"Let all that I am praise the LORD; may I never forget the good things he does for me."

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Summer pictures

Christian with his Auntie at the park. My children just adore her. 

Jonathan spending time with books, of course. This appears a bit ambitious--was he really planning to read all of those books???

Christian just turned one! My mom made them matching vests. So cute!

This picture was while I was at work.

My sister took this picture of Christian while she was visiting.

Cuddling with my kids and their teddy bears after work, because I'm exhausted and I missed them. I still really like my job, but it is not easy and I am arrantly tired when I get home. It can be crazy and stressful, and my feet and legs get sore from standing and walking the whole time. 

I love summer, Tes, our family, and our new home. Not necessarily in that exact order. :)


In June we went to Wisconsin for family camp. 

It was definitely worth the drive to see all of the relatives and connect and just have a good time. The drive itself, while long, was mostly fun as well.

Tes went fishing with my cousins and uncles and caught a number of fish including this nice catfish. I did make him a huge catfish stew when we got home with tomatoes and onions and spices. Just the Ethiopian way. Actually, I put way too much tomato in it. 

Cousin Kate

The kids were either in the water or the sand the whole time. 
I'm already looking forward to next summer! We actually went back to Wisconsin in the end of July to visit our relatives again :) I'm so glad we live closer now than where we did the last couple of years. 

Tuesday, April 18, 2017


A family photo

Graduate :)

Happy birthday Jonathan! He is 3 now.

Jonathan did a pretty good job pushing Christian at the park

Tes took all the pictures that he is not in. He does a good job capturing the moments. Christian adores his Ababa and you can see that in his smile here. He's not smiling for the swing as much as he's smiling for Tes. 

It was kind of cold and rainy when we finally got pictures. Good thing Tes was keeping me warm ;)

Monday, April 10, 2017

It's spring

It's spring. I like spring. I have been taking my kids for walks to the park quite frequently. Jonathan turned 3 and I love the developments he is making. He builds more with Duplos and car tracks, and his attention span is a lot longer. His vocabulary is amazing, and he speaks in complete paragraphs. He can't always answer my questions, and can get frustrated pretty quickly, but at the same time he can take the initiative to tell me all about something that happened or a situation and I'm amazed at how much he can actually tell me about things that are happening. Right now he is playing with his new Duplos from Grandma. He loves them!

Christian has been growing as well. He is no longer bald, and he is crawling and standing now. He has also started crying after me lately. I will be walking around trying to get things done and he watches me walk away and starts crying. Little stinker. I love his personality. He is a cuddle bug, he is confident, he is demanding, but at the same time he is more quiet and mild than Jonathan. He can actually sit still and be content, and that is something I don't recall happening with Jonathan.

I've been working again, starting in January. I am really enjoying my new job. I think I learn something new every time I work. I can't say very many days have gone "smoothly," or exactly according to plan, but I'm looking at the things that go "wrong" as semi-positive events to help shape my nursing judgment and experience. It has been a big part of my life these last few months.

 Last weekend, my mother and sister came to visit.

I love Christian's eyes. His little face is just too cute.

Sunday, December 18, 2016

Christmas story!

It was so cold today, -10, we didn't go to Church this morning. It would not be good to be driving to Church in this weather with two little children, and end up getting a flat tire or something. We talked to my brother in law Tamene over video chat, and he said it was 104 degrees there! In Ethiopia where he is right now. And it was night where he was. So crazy the different temperatures.

Since we didn't go to Church this morning, we had Sunday school here. I read and told Jonathan the Christmas story from the book of Matthew. We were sitting on the floor in his bedroom and I was telling him about how Joseph and Mary and baby Jesus had to go to Egypt. I tried to dramatize the story a bit to make it very interesting and help him understand. Perhaps I dramatized it a bit too much? Jonathan jumped up and opened his dresser drawers and began grabbing all of  his clothes and bringing them out to the living room. He was all ready to get in the car and go to Egypt. He is so funny. But the dramatization made the story more real to me, as well.

To imagine my husband waking up and saying, an Angel came and warned me in a dream last night, we have to get out of here, and basically grabbing some clothes and getting in the car and leaving because we were scared for our child's life?

The Christmas story is so amazing, exciting, and a wonderful thing to celebrate. We don't celebrate Christmas only because it is an exciting story, however, we celebrate because it is when Emmanuel (Jesus) was born. Emmanuel--God with us. Imagine how God was born as a baby, possibly outside, his only bed a feed box with some hay for a mattress. Wrapped in a simple cloth, no diapers--no doctors and nurses, no warm and soapy bath. Mary and Joseph were not wealthy or powerful people. But this, too me, just proves again how loving God is. He came to suffer with us and know our trials. He is not some far off God who does not understand what we go through, but he knows our pain, and our joys. In the hardest times of my life, I can say that I have known God's presence with me. Emmanuel. God with us.

The true story of Christmas can change our lives forever. So much better than Santa Claus.

Friday, December 2, 2016

embarrassing moment :)

My poor husband. He must think that God's purpose for me in his life is to torment him. haha! But I don't do it on purpose . . . thankfully, my husband has a sense of humor and can laugh about things a bit.

Last week, before Thanksgiving, Tes sent me to get some toothpaste. He told me to get a small tube, not the travel size but the next size up, so that it would fit nicely in our toothbrush/toothpaste holder next to the sink. I went to the store and I was in a hurry, so I quickly scanned the aisle for what appeared to be the right size toothpaste. I didn't open the package because I didn't want to damage it in case I didn't buy it then. I purchased it and left it unopened on the bathroom counter. Later, when Tes went to brush his teeth, he opened the package and pulled out a mammoth-sized tube of toothpaste! I don't think we've ever purchased such a large tube. He was like, "What is this?!" I was like, "well, that was all I saw, sorry."

The next week we were picking up groceries and he headed for the toothpaste aisle. Somehow, he spotted the smaller tubes of toothpaste. He was wondering why I didn't purchase one of those, so I was explaining that they must not have been there when I was shopping, because I didn't see them. I said, "maybe they were all out? It was Thanksgiving and there were a lot of people shopping and the aisle was pretty crowded." Tes said, "So people were buying all the toothpaste because of Thanksgiving?"

I had to admit it was just me overlooking the smaller tubes . . . somehow. I promise I didn't do it on purpose to irk him! Anyhow, it will be a while before we need to buy toothpaste again. That mammoth tube will last a while.

I don't do these things intentionally, but somehow they happen. For example, I have been applying for jobs lately, and for one position, I sent them the cover letter I had written for a different place. I hadn't even written a cover letter for the position/place I was currently applying for, but when I was applying I was like "I may as well attach my cover letter," not being intelligent enough to remember that a cover letter for a different place wasn't going to help my chances. Right after I attached it, I realized what I had done, but it was too late to get it back. They must have been pretty desperate, because they still contacted me for an interview. They did ask me if I had accepted a position at the other place that I mentioned in my cover letter! haha! Well, we scheduled a phone interview, but my sister ended up visiting that day and we took the kids to the park and I left my phone in the car and completely forgot about the interview. I was so humiliated. Hannah told me I should call the guy back so I did. As I said, they must have been pretty desperate, because they did end up calling me again and asking me if I was still interested in the position, after multiple trespasses! (I didn't go forward with the position because I didn't think it would work very well right now for me with my children.)

I applied for another job, and the day after my phone interview with them, Tes woke up to a message on his phone. They had somehow contacted him for a reference for me. Of course, they weren't really trying to reach him, but my reference (No, I did not list my husband as a reference! Although he could probably give a very accurate picture of my character qualities and flaws!) Somehow, I listed his phone number instead of my reference's! I was so embarrassed, and Tes was laughing at me. I emailed them with the correct number for my reference, but I didn't dare tell them that I had given them my husband's phone number--too humiliating! I just said I might have given them an incorrect phone number and gave them the right one.

So, somehow I keep humiliating myself, and if it isn't that, I'm doing things to provoke my husband, but not with that intent! I guess it is just my nature . . .

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Little children come to Jesus

Jonathan recently memorized Matthew 19:14, and we have discussed the story and read it straight from the passage several times. Today, while I was cooking lunch, Jonathan was singing "Jesus loves the little children" in the other room. I went over there to talk to him, and Jonathan told me "Jesus put hand on Jonathan head," patting his head. I told him, "Yes, Jesus loves the little children, and he loves you, and he put his hands on the children and blessed them, didn't he?"

After agreeing with me and talking about it some more, Jonathan ran into his bedroom and shouted loudly, "Jesus said, come please! Mommy, say come please!" He wanted me to call him so he could practice coming . . . to Jesus, I think. :) It was cute, and I called him, and then I got to talk to him a little more seriously about how we can come to Jesus and how he does want little children to come to him. Cute and so sweet.