Tuesday, December 2, 2008

We are So Thankful this Thanksgiving!

Isaiah showing Elsi how to fold laundry

Elsi trying on Ben's underwear:)

Funny face

Packer girl

Can I just say, we are so incredibly blessed? Our family works together so well. The boys help (most of the time without grumbling) to fold laundry, empty the dishwasher, clean up their toys, dust and countless other chores. It is so neat to see their positive attitude and work ethic wearing off on our little Princess (even if she gets a bit distracted by wearing her brother's underwear:)). God has given our family innumerable blessings and we are so grateful to Him for that. Praise God from whom all blessings flow!

Isaiah's First Communion-No we are not Catholic!

Heather, Steve, Isaiah and Pastor Krug

Uncle Jim, Isaiah, Aunt Fatime and Grandma Dorothy

"Can I stuff any more cookies in my mouth?"

Elsiana, Isaiah, Ben and Dad for a horsey back ride

On November 23rd, we celebrated Isaiah's First Communion. When many people hear this, they are confused, as it usually relates to Catholicism, not the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod. The church we belong to, St. Paul's in Oconomowoc, has adopted a new program, called Faith Inkubators. It is a program that encourages intergenerational learning within the family and it is home-based, church-supported. We work together as a family talking about our faith, participating in nightly devotions, sharing highs and lows and doing PTA prayers (Praise God, Thank Jesus and Ask the Holy Spirit). We attend GIFT on Sundays (Generations in Faith Together) with our children and their grandparents (Bill and Bobbie) and Prime Time, our Wednesday evening program with Bible Studies. Children in our church can participate in Holy Communion as early as 5th grade after a 9 week instruction class led by a pastor and attended with a parent. Isaiah then had an interview with Pastor Knea and myself to determine whether he was ready for the responsibility of taking Holy Communion. St. Paul's also no longer confirms its Youth, they go throught the process of Re-Affirmation as a Junior in high school. Being involved with our children's faith is very important to our family and we are blessed to have a church family like St. Paul's to support us.

More Halloween Fun

Steve getting some abuse from the neighbor:)

Pastor Knea and Simon Tiedtke playing Wii boxing

Elizabeth the Ballerina

Joe the Pumpkin

Joshie the Cowboy

Okay, so Thanksgiving has passed and it is almost Christmas, and I am first posting the rest of my Halloween pictures. Better late than never:). We did have a wonderful Halloween night. Our friends the Tiedtkes and the Kneas joined us for an evening of dinner and trick-or-treating and Wii. The weather was beautiful and we even saw a shooting star. We are so grateful to have such wonderful friends.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Halloween Fun

Elizabeth, Ben, Steve and Isaiah pumpkin carving Elizabeth's pumpkin "Jack"

Isaiah with his jack-o-lantern

Ben with his carved pumpkin

Steve and Drew as the "Fat Twins"

Elsi as a pink poodle

Isaiah as Batman, Ben as Darth Vadar and Elsi as the poodle

We celebrated Halloween and trick-or-treating this past weekend (and we will again this weekend). We carved pumpkins, went trick-or-treating with our friends the Tiedtke's and had a grand old time:). We went in the evening and the weather was mild. Elsi was a trooper and walked for quite a few houses, peering in her pumpkin at all of the goodies she was accumulating. Steve and Drew were the life of the evening as many cars honked for their hilarious costumes:). We are so grateful for our wonderful friends, the Tiedtke's. They are a very special family to us.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Fall Family Fun Night

The cast of "The Leaf Pile"

Miss Sue, the bluejay

Ben, Isaiah & Elizabeth

Joshie & Ben enjoying their lollipop and cookie:)

This past Tuesday we had "Fall Family Fun Night" at Kinder Place, which is Elsiana's day care at our church. They had pumpkin ring toss, pumpkin bean bag toss, pumpkin cookies and a pumpkin patch! We had a great time that night. I was fortunate enough to be able to watch our new pastor's three children that night as well, so they were able to join in the festivities. We also were able to write on a contruction paper leaf what we are thankful for. Benjamin said that he is thankful for God. What a great witness he is:). I am so blessed to work at a church where I am daily surrounded by God's love. What a blessing!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Happy 2nd Birthday, Elsi!

Elsiana enjoying her balloons

Elsiana's 2nd birthday!

Elsiana pausing to pose for a picture:)

Yum! Winnie the Pooh cake!

April celebrates her birthday, too!

This past Saturday we celebrated Elsiana's 2nd birthday with our families and friends. We were blessed to have them surround us to praise God for two wonderful years with our Princess. Our dear friend April Tiedtke shares her birthday with Elsiana as well. Elsi walked around all day on Monday (her actual birthday) singing, "Happy Birthday to you. Happy Birthday to you." It was the cutest thing! Lord, we praise and thank you for the countless blessings you have bestowed on our family. You are amazing, God!

Labor Day Weekend

Cousins Ryan & Sarah

Captain Ryan driving the boat:)

Elsiana enjoying the lake

Ben & Cousin Ryan "sledding" down the sand dune

Isaiah & Cousin Sarah enjoying Lake Castle Rock

Aunt Felicia & Elsiana

Mischievous Cousin Ryan:)

Cousin Sarah & Uncle Pete

Everyone enjoying sparklers!

Whew! It's been a while since my last post. We were making the most of the last few days of summer:). Over Labor Day weekend, we had Steve's brother, and his family up to the cabin. We were happy to have Pete, Felicia, Sarah and Ryan for the weekend. The weather couldn't have been any better! Sunny, low humidity and 80's all three days! We enjoyed great time out on the water and by the campfire. Both kids and adults had a blast!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Last Few Days of Vacation

Isaiah with the frog, yet again:)

Look, Cousin Brett, a frog!

Brett, Isaiah and Ben on Devil's Island

Grandpa Bill with the only catch of the day

We finished out our vacation by enjoying some time on the pontoon boat on Saturday. The kids climbed up Devil's Island and Grandpa Bill did some fishing. It was a really great way to enjoy some of the later days of summer. We are so blessed to have such a wonderful place to get away to and great family to enjoy it with. Thank you Lord!

What happens when...

you leave three young boys alone (for a short while) with a fire?
Ben and Cousin Brett getting the fire ready while
Isaiah takes a picture

Ben and Isaiah "supervising" the fire while
Cousin Brett takes a picture

The three boys think it would be a good idea to add a
HUGE piece of cardboard to the fire

The ginormous fire!

Grandpa Bill, Grandma Bobbie and Cousin Brett joined us for the latter part of our time at the cabin (Friday, Saturday and Sunday). Steve and I were able to enjoy some time out for dinner while they watched all four kids for us (God bless them!). They built a fire and the boys decided to "enhance" it a bit with their own additives and then take pictures (or "evidence" as I like to call it). Luckily no one was hurt and the fire didn't get too out of control. We gave the boys a stern talking to about the dangers of fire, so hopefully this incident won't be repeated!

Time at the Cabin

Our "new" pontoon boat

Mom and Ben building a fire

Ben, Isaiah and Elsiana standing on the shores of Lake Castle Rock

Isaiah and Ben with the frog (again!)

Elsiana driving the boat

Dad, Isaiah and Ben on "Devil's Island" on Lake Castle Rock

After leaving Rhinelander on Monday, we headed to the cabin for the rest of the week. The weather wasn't very favorable, but we were able to enjoy some quality time together at the cabin. We picked up a pontoon boat on Monday that Steve is going to refurbish. Even in its dilapidated condition, it is still a beautiful ride on the water! I love it! The sunshine came out on Thursday, so we took the boat out on Lake Castle Rock and found a small "island" that the boys could climb up on. They really liked it. Ben thought it was kind of like "National Treasure". He has such an imagination!