Monday, December 22, 2014


Well, I promised we wouldn't do it. But here we are with another exciting, family growing, announcement...

Can you guess?

Are you nervous?

I am!

I am definitely on my way to 40...but yet solidly in my 30's. So really - I'm young, right? RIGHT?! Please assure me!

I am definitely too young to be known as the crazy cat lady.

But here I am.

Yes - we got another cat. Have mercy!

I'd like to introduce you to Thatcher (Thatch & BT for short. In keeping with the Tom Sawyer theme for the kitties, we have named this little girl Becky Thatcher)

Can't see her? Haha!! Neither can we!

No...she's not imaginary.

Lil Thatch is the sister of Huck & Sawyer. They were born/lived in the industrial park where Brian works. Huck was caught at 6 weeks old, Sawyer was caught about a month later. Thatcher was caught on Thursday. She is 7 months old, and obviously extremely wild at this point. They were finally able to catch her in this large live trap, with a can of tuna fish.

She was taken to the vet immediately, and the vet couldn't even touch her. She had to be put to sleep to administer flea meds, and then while she was out, they spayed her and took care of all her other health needs.

It was decided that we would care for her, and attempt to tame her. This will be a lengthy process, no doubt. She came to our house immediately from the vet after she woke up. We opened the cage...and she's gone!

Well, not "gone". We are keeping her in the garage, but there are so many little nooks, crannies and "behind things" that she is extremely hard to get a peek at.

She is solid black, and looks just like Huck, only she has short/normal hair, not long hair (Huck's long hair is soooo gorgeous).

Step 1 - keep her in the garage, and don't try to catch her:-) We let Huck and Sawyer into the garage for lengthy periods of time, so hopefully, she'll start to get used to them, and think of the garage as home. We basically use the garage entrance as our front door, and our pantry, chest freezer and extra fridge are down there, so we are "around" without being threatening to her. She has been using the litter box we put down there, so that hurdle is already down:-)

Step 2 - we'll leave the garage to house door open, and let her come up into the house as she explores. Once she's in the house, we will attempt to "trap" (by closing the door) her in the master bedroom/bathroom. Again, by letting the other cats in there, but obviously we'll be around a lot more, so she can get used to people by being limited to a confined (but large enough) space.

Step 3 - attempt (adults only) to touch her.

Step 4 - give her away - If we are able to successfully tame her, we will find her a new home, as I am not interested in another indoor cat. If she is unable to be tamed, we can keep her as an outdoor cat. I don't mind throwing food outside for her - just don't want another cat in the house 24/7.

So we'll see how this goes! The kids like to browse around the perimeter of the garage and see if they can spot her from a distance. Kenna is beyond thrilled that we now have 1 girl cat to go with the two boys. Because now the cats match the people.

Yaaaaaaaaayyyyyyyyy. :-)

Christmas Updates 2014

Merry Christmas to all!

I neglected to send out Christmas cards this year. Time literally got away from me! Apologies to all, but here is the "online version" I just whipped up for you. Imagine receiving it in the mail and hanging it on your fridge so you can look at us all year!

We've had a very full year, while at the same time, it's been very normal and sort of boring on the whole. We've enjoyed 1 full year now of living in Chesapeake. With our awesome outdoor space, we've hosted more large parties than ever before. It is not uncommon to have 20+ (or 30+!) people here on an almost monthly basis. 

Most of our days are occupied with homeschooling, baking cookies (my new hobby), chasing after our new kittens, Huck & Sawyer, and extra curricular activities like piano lessons and sports practices. I still watch Sonny (4) & May (3) every day, and they add smiles to our daily life also.

The kids "about me" pictures on the side bar of this blog will tell you a bit about their favourite things, if you want to check that out:-)

We didn't do much travel this year, but did make a "quick" (two week) trip up to the Toronto area for an extended family reunion, and some good visits with my Grandpa, my Mom (who flew in for the reunion), other extended family, and my sister Lauryn, who is a gracious host to us "crazy Americans". The 13 hour drive seems short(ish), now that the kids are older and much better at handling that much time in a vehicle, so we anticipate making that trip a fun summer-ly tradition.

Brian has been giving 110% to his job, as always. He's an excellent advocate for the guys that work for him, and the company has been seeing some good work come in, and positive changes occurring over all. The industry (commercial construction/contracting) seems to be stable, in general, which is good news, as they have plenty of work to bid on. He is honourable in a profession that is usually less-than, which often equals a burden that he must take on personally. When others fall short on responsibility, he is always there to pick up the slack. We are exceedingly proud of all he has accomplished in the 6 years he has been there.

Thank you all, friends and family near and far, for loving us, praying for us, and laughing with us. We are blessed, and thankful. We appreciate you all so much, and wish so much that words could adequately convey how grateful we are for each of you.

Enjoying the journey, 

Brian, Darla, Kenna, Brooks & Grey

To read our yearly edition of In Other Words, click here

For our yearly pictures, watch the video below

Thursday, December 18, 2014

All About Kenna

A brief Q & A with Kennedy, who is currently 8.5 years old

Favorite colour?: Blue, but I change it pretty much every day

Best Friend?: Ella, I guess. Sarah will probably be my best friend when she comes back, but that will be awhile from now
{friend Sarah & family are missionaries in Papua New Guinea}

Favourite Food & Drink?: Ramen Noodle Soup and Root Beer

Favourite Movie?: Big Hero Six, and not just 'cause it's new but because it's really funny

Favourite Subject?: Do we have any subjects in school with science in it? {uuuh, yah. Science} Ok, well, nevermind. I'd say, Map Skills

Favourite thing to do?: Maybe, read. And clean my room. And sometimes singing and dancing

Favourite app?: Netflix

What will your next birthday cake be?: Frozen

What do you want to be when you grow up?: A babysitter

What do you like best about your family?: They are funny, and we always do fun stuff

What is the best thing about having two brothers?: Nothing

What is the worst thing about having two brothers?: How they wake you up, and you always have to make breakfast for them, and they always do disgusting stuff

What is the most memorable moment of your life?: The time we went to Canada, and we were going to a house, and Brooks shouted out "Little House on the Prairie", 'cause it was on the prairie

Favourite sport?: Does cheerleading count as a sport? If not, then soccer

What is your best advice?: Don't lie, don't steal, don't...I got nothin' else. The reason is you'll get in trouble, and lying is wrong, well to be exact, they are both wrong

Height: 49 inches (in the 10th percentile)  Weight: 57 lbs (31st percentile)

To read her old "about me's" click here

All About Brooks

A brief Q & A with Brooks, who is currently 7.5 years old

Favorite colour?: Green, blue & pink

Best Friend?: The Parkers, The Buttons, and The Curtis' and Ella

Favourite Food & Drink?: I like the-sagna, and pizza, and I love BLT's too, and pasta. OH! And ravioli! With root beer

Favourite Movie?: Big Hero Six, I'm not copying Kenna, I really do like it

Favourite Subject?: Science, because I like to learn about animals and stuff

Favourite thing to do?: Play

Favourite app?: Angry Birds Star Wars, Angry Birds, Sonic Jump and Minion Rush, and the story book Bible one

What will your next birthday cake be?: Calvin & Hobbes

What is the best thing about your family?: That Dad loves me, and you Mom

What is the best thing about having a brother and a sister?: I like Kenna, sometimes she's nice, and Grey likes to play cars with me, and sometimes Wii and boardgames with me. And I also like that Kenna lets me play with her Playmobil

What is the most memorable moment of your life?: Finding a dollar on the sidewalk

What do you want to be when you grow up?: A worker like Daddy

Favourite sport?: All the ones I play, which is, basketball, football, soccer, baseball, and I do like tennis and golf. I really want to play table tennis though

What is your best advice?: Help people clean, help people rake the yard, help people pick up pine cones or gumballs because how 'bout if you go barefoot and you step on them. And always ride in a car, and not in a plane. How about if the plane runs out of gas, you'll fall from the sky to death, but if your car runs out of gas you just have to walk a mile

Height: 50 inches (in the 59th percentile)  Weight: 53 lbs (44th percentile)

To read Brooks old "about me's" click here

All About Grey

A brief Q & A with our Lleyton Grey, who is currently 4.5 years old

Favorite colour?: Green

Best Friend?: Abram & Giavanna

Favourite Food & Drink?: Pizza with pepperoni's and oh-ka cola

Favourite Movie?: Up

Favourite Subject?: Reading

Favourite thing to do?: Play with Sonny

Favourite app?: Minion Rush and Subway Surfer

What do you want to be when you grow up?: A worker

What is the best thing about your family?: I don't know! I don't know what that means!

What is the best thing about having a brother and a sister?: They help me

What will your next birthday cake be?: I want it to be all like, pretty, like smooth {fondant?} Yes. Fondant. {Ok, but what will it look like?} um, green

Favourite sport?: I mostly like soccer

What is your best advice?: I don't know. I don't have any

Height: 43 inches (in the 64th percentile)  Weight: 41 lbs (61st percentile)

To read Grey's old "about me's" click here

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Gallery Wall

So, since moving to our Chesapeake house, I've really not done a ton of decorating. I hung a few random things on existing nails in the walls. That was pretty much it.

I had a ton of canvases stacked on the mantel, and when I cleared the mantel for Christmas decor, I was inspired to get things where they "belong". A gallery wall is step one.
A friend of mine helped me with an approximate layout on the floor, and then, using command hooks, I set off to work! This is how I left it:-)...because I ran out of command hooks. There is still some space to fill, But worry not, I've got tons to hang still. Pictures, art, and more B's...
More to hang!
I would like to do a few pictures in the hall, also, I think. And we've got some floating shelves I'd like to put up, Basically, this gallery wall has barely put a dent in decor stash ready and waiting. Oh Boy!

Anyway, I've never done such a "mish-mash" gallery before, and so I was a little nervous of how it would turn out, but I am really loving the results so far!

Who Would Have Dreamed

I get that Christmas is so overly "hyped" in the world at large, that people shy away from declaring it as their favourite celebration, because one might assume that all the commercialism goes along with it. But I do like Christmas a lot, and it just might be my favourite. Each holiday has it's own things to celebrate, but Christmas just seems a little extra special.

When you really stop and think about the miracle of it all - it's a pretty big deal. And it's also entirely simple. Yet wrapped up in that simplicity are all the mysteries of the heavens. It's truly something full of awe.

And who would have dreamed, or ever foreseen
That we could hold God in our hands?
The Giver of Life is born in the night
Revealing God's glorious plan
To save the world