Toot Sweets

AliyahI have been wondering more and more lately if our family size in now complete. We’ve always left it up to the Lord and trusted in His provision for us. Michelle and I would be happy if Aliyah was our last, but we’d also be happy to welcome another if God so chooses. I confess, now that I’m fifty, I look forward to getting diapers out of our house.

Aliyah is a joy. Even though she’s a bit stubborn at this age (almost 3), she is also funny, loving and caring. She’s my Toot Sweets, the nickname I’ve been calling her since she was born. The name comes from a song in the movie, “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.” The YouTube clip of  the song is below. Aliyah, as you watch this, may it remind you just how much your Dad loves you!

Oh how blessed I am to have such a wonderful wife and wonderful children! Thank you, Lord!

Sweet Anna

Anna (age 7) has always been our most expressive child when it comes to showing love. She is constantly showering us with hugs, kisses, and home-made cards and notes. This is a masterpiece she slipped into my bag before I left for District Conference in Detroit Lakes, MN, April 2013. My two favorite lines: “your the best dad I’ve known” and “I love you like a real daughter!”

I’m so glad she is my real daughter!

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Josh’s First Job

ImageWe entered a new phase in our lives this week: Joshua started working! He’s had interest in a possible landscaping job, but we really didn’t have any contacts. Last Sunday at church I learned that another young man worked for a Christian landscaper. I asked if he needed help and he did! On top of all that, the landscaper turned out to the husband of Pam Johnson who I’ve gotten to know this year through the International Cultural Communicators club that meets at Hope.  What a blessing!

I have to admit I was nervous for Josh. It’s hard to see your kids grow up! But he’s hard-working and dependable; I know he will be a blessing!

Violin Teacher

MichelleAnnaViolinI took this photo on Memorial Day 2013 and posted it to Facebook along with this comment:

Confession: I’m in love with Anna’s violin teacher.

So glad she’s my wife!

I praise God for bringing me and Michelle together! I hope that after I am long gone, my children will always remember how much I loved their mother.

It is because of Michelle that I get to enjoy a home filled with the beautiful sounds of piano, violin, guitar, singing, and drums.

LeRoy and Vonnie

Playing for VonnieOur family has been blessed by countless people who have crossed our paths over the years! On this day I praise God for a dear couple in our church, Vonnie and LeRoy. Vonnie fell a few weeks ago and broke a bone, which eventually landed her at Presbyterian Homes in Bloomington. Today we loaded up the clan and a few violins and headed there to visit her. Her dear husband, LeRoy, was there – still caring, still adoring his bride.

LeRoy Vonnie 2Michelle, Jonathan and Anna played several songs. I just had to snap a photo of LeRoy and Vonnie because of the huge smiles on their faces! I was grateful for all my kids for going to visit, but my heart soared hearing these three using their gift to bless others. Before leaving, Zachary prayed over Vonnie. I am a proud father, thankful for God’s work in our lives!

We love Pastor LeRoy and Vonnie!

Dreaming

DSC06474Last night at the dinner table, I asked each of the kids to describe their life as if they were 40 years old. It was a speaking opportunity and a chance to use their imagination.

At first Jonny (age 9) said he wanted to work at McDonalds (and no doubt living in our basement!). I urged him to aim a little higher and he said, “I want to work at a fancy restaurant, you know, the kind that serves chips while you’re waiting for your food.”

I guess we need to get out more.