Saturday, April 19, 2014

Love Wins

“To love means loving the unlovable. To forgive means pardoning the unpardonable. Faith means believing the unbelievable. Hope means hoping when everything seems hopeless.” 
― G.K. Chesterton

 Today I’m thinking about the greatest gift ever given to me, you and the entire world.  He took on the sin of the world…He took on death…and won.  Love wins.  Always.  How humbling and amazing and incredible and I just will never grasp the magnitude of His love for me and you.  We don’t deserve it.  We’re ugly sinners and yet in Christ, we are new creations.  We are beautiful.  Loved.  Cherished.  Valued.  Redeemed.  Renewed.  Restored.  It absolutely floors me and I am beyond grateful.

We are so grateful for all of you and all of your love! 

Love Wins

Wednesday, April 16, 2014


 My daughter is only 8 and I am so thankful I can teach her the ways of the Bible instead of and in addition to the world’s ways.
 God is more concerned with our hearts than with our appearances. But the LORD said to Samuel, “Don’t judge by his appearance or height, for I have rejected him. The LORD doesn’t see things the way you see them. People judge by outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart.” 1 Samuel 16:7 NLT

love wins

Monday, April 14, 2014

Back to work

Dave went back to work last week and he spent the entire week moving into his new office at the new police department and catching up on all his paperwork. He just wanted to get back to something normal in his life and it helped him to get back to the police department. Dave said that everyone was really nice and happy to see him which made him feel really good. Overall he said it went very well but he was definitely tired each night when he got home.

Today he goes back to his regular schedule and he will be back in uniform. His uniform fits a little different from all the weight he lost and he had to adjust his gun belt by two notches too because it fell right off him when he put it on last week. 

His mouth still hurts. It comes and goes, some days are better than others. Sometimes his mouth hurts alot even bringing him to tears but other times it doesn't hurt too bad at all. We just keep praying that the pain will go away soon and he will not have to deal with it everyday. It hurts to watch him have that much pain but it is alot better than it was even two weeks ago.

I know it is good for Dave to be back to work but I miss having him here and the boys really enjoyed having him teach them math and history too. Odin said that he really liked having Dad teach him math problems everyday as Dave laid on the couch recovering.  I know it was not fun for him but it was nice for us to have him around and now we really miss him.

We have had a share of sinus colds/coughs going on around here this last week.  Gabe was up a lot every night and he is just starting to feel better.  The kiddos were so excited to be able to play in the sunshine.  They were outside for hours playing games and coming up with creative wood, nails and duct tape weapons.  We had a great time with friends this weekend.  Love fellowship and hearing the childrens laughter and loudness coming from every room of the house.  Thank you for the continued prayers cards and support.

Love Wins  

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

date with my girl

It's been a long time since we have taken the other 2 kiddos(the public school kids)
on a date.  We try to every month but with everything going on it just never worked out.  Odin and Jonah are always with us so that is totally different.  Olivia and Jeremiah never know what we do all day long! Hee Hee...We try to at least spend some quality one on one time with them and make things cheap and simple.  We are thrifty and simple people here.
Olivia always wants to go roller skating.  She loves it, just wish there was a roller rink closer instead of having to drive to Appleton.  The music is usually stuff we don't allow them to listen to but we just skate to the beats and once in awhile they throw Brit Nicole or  Toby Mac  in there.    She light up when they do this.  They had a lot of birthdays there this time.  There was this big family skating together behind us at one point.  The husband had made a few remarks to us a couple times as we passed.  I just said yes and nodded.  Kind of like when your kids are talking to you and your not really listening and you say yes to something you never recalled saying yes too.  The kids are getting good at this.  Sometimes they trick me and know I am  totally not  listening to them.  So we are skating along and all of a sudden this guy is behind us again and we here OH GOD!  We look back and he is on the floor.  So we decided to go around one more time.  I was  kind of scared of this guy.  He was totally on some kind of drugs and acting crazy the whole time he was there.  His family was out there by then too.  To make a long story short, they wheeled him of the rink in a wheelchair and he broke his femur.  Crazy!
Olivia looked at me while we were skating after all the hoopla and says
mom, I think we should pray for that scary man.  
She cracks me up. 
 Her prayer every night starts out like this
your an awesome God
keep rockin on
keep making miracles happen
love this girl

we ran to Hobby Lobby to return something and she wanted to push the cart. So happily she is cruising along, and ya know how small those carts are at HL.  Seriously small...
She decides to run as fast as possible down the isle and put her feet up on the foot part of the cart and hold on and go for a ride....well she tipped the cart over her head and it landed on her like a laundry basket.
Like this...

I totally wish I had a camera phone then.  I was tempted to ask the lady by us to take a picture  and email it to me.  It was seriously priceless.  
That is how she rolls...

Saturday, April 5, 2014

long week

 David had a very long and hard week
after our last trip to Mayo he started weaning off his pain medicines
last Sunday morning he went off all of his prescription pain medicines completely

within a short time he was having lots of pain and very tough side effects
we had no idea how much pain he actually had until he cut out the medicines that helped him
at first we thought he had the flu until we figured it out that it was from going off the medicines
Dave got very little sleep all week but he took mini naps to get by

Dave's sense of taste is slowly coming back but his appetite decreased again last week
he lost more weight too
a lot of his clothes don't fit anymore or are really baggy

his hair is growing back and its nice to see his crown of gray again

it was hard to see the sadness resurface and see him in such pain but it was good for him to get out of the house running a few errands here and there
it's good for the kiddos to see too
they really miss their Dad and hope he will be back to full Daddy duty soon
I can't wrestle as good as Dave does

Dave said this past week was one of the toughest he has had through the whole journey
real life sometimes mean real pain
real faith also means real pain
real connection with God can come from such pain
Dave certainly has seen this first hand

Monday Dave is going back to work
obviously he could not work until he was off his pain medicines
he hopes and prays for a new beginning
 he plans to do office work the first week  and then get back into his normal work a week later
please pray that this big change and his return to work goes well

here is a photo of my Captain America fans before they went out to a matinee to see the new "Winter Soldier" movie which they all said was "awesome"

Tuesday, April 1, 2014


where are these weeks going
everything is just rolling together this past month of Dave's  recovery
I really haven't had a chance to write 
 forgetting to pick up my camera but
I have been reading a lot here and there
more than I ever do
and spending a lot of time with my family
getting kind of sad that it will be Dave' last week home with us during the day
the kiddos are going to miss him.
it has been awesome!
time is just flying by 
we have had a lot of puking going on again
Jeremiah and Olivia had projectile vomiting again
I feel like you can never get that smell out of anything
praying Dave doesn't get it.
I cannot wait for spring
just to have the windows open and the kiddos running around outside
they are anxiously waiting to ride their bikes
 camping season starts at the state parks
I am so excited to see Gabe camping this year 
the messes and excitement of all things new
long walks and hikes with the kiddos

Long drives tend to make me space out and
go through my thoughts and sing songs of praises to our awesome King. 
like the one we just took to MN a few weeks ago
lots of time reflecting and talking about our hopes and dreams
Dave and I can barely talk 5 minutes at home without somebody needing something
so it's nice to have some uninterrupted time to catch up on things

it was hard being at the Mayo Clinic
always is
it seems to open your eyes on a different level to the hurting around you
my heart about skips a beat trying to figure out what I can do for others
looking around there breaks my heart
tears come to the surface so easily
not sure why but they do
there is so much hustle and bustle walking around there
meeting people in passing
or talking to them on the elevator
on in the waiting room
i love to slow down and take the time to see and hear what is going on around you
taking everything in that God has put in front of you
it' amazing what he opens our eyes too if you let him 
I love to strike up conversations with others
and hear about their life or journey they are on
life is full of stories
I love to uncover what God wants me to do with my feelings, what makes me cry and what he puts on my heart
I always have all these dreams 
someday I hope to fulfill

Thank you for all the birthday wishes, calls, emails, cards and gifts....
I am not a huge birthday person myself 
my awesome husband made the cake himself
he rocked it!
I do not like attention on me by any means.
The kids wondered what age you have to stop decorating at?
they were bothered that I didn't want decorations
I love the simple joy they get from things

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Wish Jill a Happy Birthday!

You are an amazing woman, an amazing wife, an amazing mother, and everyday I give thanks to God for bringing the two of us together.
I hope you have a wonderful birthday Jill 
Thank you for loving me.

(Sorry folks, she left herself logged on so I hijacked her blog to wish her a happy birthday)

Friday, March 28, 2014

Week 5 Update

Dave is doing well.
His throat feels much better and the sores inside his mouth are starting to heal
the swelling on his tongue has gone down too
he's starting to eat more solid foods and getting back to a normal diet and he can even taste more food now too
overall his weight has been stable and he has even gained a few pounds back
he does have some swelling in his neck under his jaw which the doctors told us would happen and they have a funny name for it. 
this is common after surgery to remove lymph nodes and he keeps massaging it which helps reduce the swelling and also some of the pain
the nerves in his jaw are starting to respond better too
he still has a little droop on his right side but it is much better
Dave's hair is growing back too
we cut it short when he started it and now the hair is growing back at a pretty good rate
his facial hair is growing back too but not the same
i don't think he will be able to grow a beard again or at least not for a long time
the hair only comes back in blotches on his face which is sort of odd so he is just keeping it clean shaven for now
We have cut back on his pain medicine and he hopes to cut it all back in the next week
our hope is for Dave to be cleared to go back to work early next month at least on a temporary basis so he can start feeling "normal" again

we have had a crazy week otherwise at home
we have some stomach bug going around
Gabe was puking for about 5 hours the other night
Dave and I were constantly doing laundry throughout the night
I can't say we have ever done that before.
We went through so many sheets, pillows, blankets and pads 
he kept rubbing his head in it
we had to keep washing his head off under the sink all night
crazy is all I can say

 The next day he was fine but Jeremiah got it
so he missed school that day 
he seemed to be puking more than Gabe 
but today he seemed great
back to his normal self again 
 Jonah and I have tummy aches but I am hoping it stays away from everyone else

I was talking to the older 2 boys(actually working through one of our boy books we have) about hair and puberty and stuff
 and we hit the subject of breasts 
and they asked what the purpose of nipples were on boys
and I laughed so hard
Odin says"  boys have nipples for muscles and girls have nipples for milk then"
seriously this parenting thing is funny
How do you keep a straight face?

I love how this girl doesn't care what she looks like!
We use to wear wigs all the time in high school
heck we would go into town with wigs on
 and dress all crazy just for fun because we loved it
I will try to find some pictures
Olivia you are a free spirit just like your mama
and I love you dearly for it.

Have a great weekend
thank you for all your continued love and support
we love you dearly!!!

Monday, March 24, 2014

All these weeks we have been walking in and out of St. Vincents
through the valet parking/emergency entrance
pass the patients with anger and pain on their face
or tears surfacing 
the kids like to cause a problem going through those automatic revolving doors
I think the valet parking attendants are glad were not there
past the sweet greeters that so kindly try to beat you to the automatic door button
love that
such sweet volunteers
pass the people in the larger waiting room
where you can gladly add a piece to the big puzzle 
which I always wonder if it ever gets done
I  wonder why the patients are there
sometimes I wish we all had a label on our head when we were in the Dr.s office
not really
 but it would be sometimes easier to start conversations that way
my kiddos always grabbed a candy or 2 from the jar by the nurses station
they are  the candies that are dum dums without the stick
of course they take all the purple and red ones
or help themselves to a cup of hot cocoa
Jonah brings his own marshmallows 
gotta love that guy 

our forever friend Tom
who is battling colon cancer
who the kiddos now write too
they love pen pals

we excitedly wait to see Tom, maybe Glen or meet a new person that is before Dave
we love talking to these people and getting to know them
I feel like they just become part of your life and your journey
hoping to bring a little love and joy to their hearts
I always wonder what it's like to be a nurse/Dr. in that department
I would love to just hang out in the waiting room spreading love, and joy to others and praying for them
what a great job that would be
we were trying to figure out what random act of kindness to do for the patients
since we have only baked for January's random acts of kindness
it was a little tricky but we managed

we first tried to drill into the boxes and thread the letters but that was a mess

then the kiddos wrote their own little notes

then we added a prayer and a cross

then we added one of these

Choose Joy Fundraiser

wrapped them up, prayed over them and gave them to one of the nurses to 
randomly bless others with
it was so much fun
 love wins

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Week 4 Update
Dave had hoped to cut down on his prescription pain medicine earlier this week
He cannot go back to work while he is on these medications so he was trying to speed things up to get back to work
He cut out the medications completely earlier this week but it did not go well at all
He was up at night in a lot of pain
His mouth is still full of open sores that look like canker sores and some are on his tongue that have caused it to swell up and it really hurts too
Now we know he was not ready to go off the full medications yet
The doctors had him go back on his pain medicines to give it more time to heal
This is very frustrating to Dave because he wanted to try to go back to work but he is going to need more time to heal
I had to remind him that most people need 8 weeks to recover from head and neck radiation and he was trying to do it in 4 weeks
We drove up to Mayo Clinic in Minnesota yesterday for another long day
Good news is both doctors who examined Dave said he is doing great
His neck is healed but they still have him doing his exercises and on the inside of his throat there are no signs of any problems or infections...praise God!
Starting next week they want him to try to cut down on the pain medicine and slowly cut it down  over the next couple weeks until he is all done
It was hard to watch them use the scope on Dave
they numb up his nose and then put this device inside that goes up his nostril and down his throat that the Doctors look through
every Dr. that looks at him has to scope him
It looked very painful and Dave said it is painful but he is used to it now
It has a camera on it so they were able to show us all the spots where the tumors were located and praise God it all looks good and healthy
We drive back home today and are scheduled to return here in June for more tests
Thank you to everyone for their continued support and prayers
Thanks too for my Mom and Dad watching the kids while we traveled here
Thanks to God for his amazing love and healing powers

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Week 3 Update
Dave is now in week 3 of his recovery and doing well
mostly good news this week
his neck looks great and healed nice
his stretching exercises are helping too and his range of motion for his neck is really good
his weight is stable now and he hasn't lost any weight for a week 
Dave can eat some solid foods and his taste is coming back
his hair is growing back nicely too

Dave's throat still hurts and it still has some tender raw spots inside his mouth
his tongue is still swollen so that makes it harder to talk (hurts) and swallow too
he still needs pain medicine but yesterday he started to reduce the amount and little by little he plans to reduce it even more
we go to the Mayo Clinic next week for a long day of medical appointments and follow up with his team of doctors
I will post updates after that trip with more information

Thank you for continued prayers and support
Love wins!

Tuesday, March 11, 2014


 those cheeks

those toes

that nose and lips

we can't imagine life without this little guy in it

Jonah having fun with Gabe

How blessed is the man whose quiver is full of them.
Psalm 127:5

Children are the most unique and creative of all God's gifts. And each one must be received this way--as God's unique gift to you.
Part of this gift means that you will be transformed into someone you'd never have become without them. It's a gift of spiritual growth and discovery, experienced each day as you relearn life through the eyes of your children.

Love Wins