Thursday, August 28, 2014

Mom's Birthday!

Today we are celebrating Mom's 46th birthday!

46 fun and interesting facts about Mom:

1. She is very optimistic
2. Is the baby of her family
3. She kissed a frog :)
4. Was called "Little Lorie" by her cousins
5. Is the manager of the Heritage String Quartet
6. Dislikes mice
7. Plays piano for our evening service
8. Tutored math students through college
9. Loves teacups
10. She reached Advanced Polliwogs in swimming lessons
11. Hit two deer with the van within a few months
12. Hates seafood, doughnuts and goat's milk
13. Always has her planner in her hand
14. She has High Gag Reflex, which makes pill-taking very interesting
15. Met Dad when she was 15 going on 16
16. Had blond hair when she was a young girl
17. Loves going to Bed and Breakfasts with Pat
18. She is rarely flustered
19. Started piano lessons at age 6
20. Master editor of grammar
21. Plays piano for our church's ladies ensemble
22. She has a Bachelor of Music in Piano Pedagogy with a Minor in Math
23. Taught piano lessons for several years (in high school, college,
and early years of marriage and children)
24. Salutatorian of her high school class
25. Absolutely loves chocolate
26. She never misses an opportunity to promote family businesses
27. Tries to find opportunities to witness to people
28. Is very frugal and never misses an opportunity for bargaining
29. LOVES Kroger, especially the gas points (she has saved thousands of dollars so far!)
30. Loves lilacs and hyacinths
31. Is a true people person
32. She treasures our time as a family
33. Loves to see people she knows (or thinks she knows) when she is out
34. Walks up to total strangers and says, "I know you!"
35. Homecoming queen at her Christian high school
36. She has had 10 natural births and 10 children in heaven
37. Loves to encourage pregnant mothers and mothers with young children
38. Gave her mother angst when she was learning how to drive
39. Loves to eat prime rib when out to eat
40. Laughs at her own jokes
41. She is a very punny individual
42. She had straight hair until she had Joseph
43. Loves coming to the Barn
44. Her favorite doll was Baby with the Suntan
45. Broke her thumb as a senior in college - played a left-hand only piece for
one of her senior recital pieces
46. Her favorite hymns are Blessed Assurance and Great is Thy Faithfulness

Mom, you are such a blessing to our family and we thank the Lord for giving us a wonderful mother!

Monday, August 25, 2014

Bible Bee and a Baby Shower

We had our local Bible Bee on Saturday and everything went very well!
Here is a picture of our local Bible Bee participants!

We girls also attended a baby shower the same day for a sweet couple from church.
The theme was books and there was a book with every dish they served!

Green eggs and ham :)

The bread was shaped like a moon and the book that went with it was "Goodnight Moon"

This baby carriage was so adorable!

We had fun at these events and we will post about who's going to Nationals this week!

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Guess Who? Challenge - ANSWERED - August 2014

Well, summer's almost over (sorry to remind y'all!) and the time has come
for another Guess Who? Challenge!

The Guess Who? Challenge is posted once a month, and is
a post of an old picture of... well, give your best shot at it!
Leave a comment with your guess of who is in the picture,
and the answer will be revealed a week after the original post.

Who do you think this Mieczkowski is?

This is.......JULIA!

Great job everybody and get ready for next month!

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

May - August catch-up post

Somehow these pics never got posted, so here are some random pics from the past 3 months!

We bought a 20' trailer and it has helped immensely with getting wood!

Opening the Bible Bee materials box! 

The Local competition is right around the corner (we'll be posting about that soon!).

Rebecca and Daniel at Fellowship Bible Church in Ann Arbor

The guys went to a Tigers game with Grandpa! Unfortunately, they lost :(

 We had a birthday party for Mary and Anna to celebrate their birthdays!

Mary loves getting books (she's a bookworm for sure!).

Anna received a new bike! It was a big surprise!

Yeah, we have a little clean up to do :)

Pastor and Mrs. Harding were able to come to our house for an evening!

For a party, we had 6 watermelon - we ate almost all of them!

We had some gravel dumped on our driveway to help fill the potholes.

For those of you who have driven up our driveway, you know it was really bad.
Now it is so much better! 

James was so tired after a fun week :)

When we were at Sforzando, Joseph worked on all of our broken cars.

He got really dirty! :)

We had a blast with the Alessios and Mellases!

The little pink girl :-)

We are just starting to harvest our beans and they are going wild!

On a recent Saturday, we had a wood day and split and stacked wood for the whole afternoon!

The wood area

Melody drying garlic - Grandpa B's worst nightmare!

This log was a huge log...

...but Joseph got it split!

A tree just toppled over!

Taking away the brush

We girls helped out too!

Mia, Julia, Bella, and Rebecca had a fun time together!

The girls made a "tree fort" in our front yard :) 

Our cousin Emma came over for an afternoon and we had a blast with her!

Playing "house"

She even brought her bike!

Thanks for coming over Emma!

We thought of some friends when Mom bought this :)

Jon got to hear Ted Cruz speak in Michigan!

Jon and Ted

Whew! I think we are officially caught up now!

Monday, August 18, 2014

Caleb's Birthday!

Today is Caleb's 16th birthday!

16 fun and interesting facts about Caleb:
1. His nickname is Caus
2. He loves any motorized vehicle
3. Was the smallest baby out of us 10 kids at 6 lbs. 15 oz. :)
4. At age 8, he said regarding his survival kit, "Joseph and I are both ready to get lost!"
5. When he was age 5, he called a cordless drill a "powerless drill"
6. Works at a farm every Tuesday afternoon
7. At age 6, he said, "What is tofu? Is it food for your toes?"
8. Loves to practice on his hunting bow when he's not busy
9. When he was 7 years old, he said the vision test was easy because 
he had the whole alphabet memorized!
10. He would like to be an auto mechanic someday
11. When he was 7, he asked, "What does it mean to through ugly clean the bathroom?"
12. When we lose something, we ask Caleb to find it and he usually does!
13. At age 8 he was sure our neighbors were playing horseshoes and hand grenades!
14. His middle name is the same as his Grandpa's middle name - Frederick
15. Is the resident lawn mower of the family
16. In just a little while, he can be talking with someone as if they've been friends for a long time :)

We love you Caleb and are thankful that God put you in our family!
Please leave a comment and wish Caleb a Happy Birthday!

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Guess Who? Challenge - August 2014

Well, summer's almost over (sorry to remind y'all!) and the time has come
for another Guess Who? Challenge!

The Guess Who? Challenge is posted once a month, and is
a post of an old picture of... well, give your best shot at it!
Leave a comment with your guess of who is in the picture,
and the answer will be revealed a week after the original post.

Who do you think this Mieczkowski is?

Friday, August 15, 2014


Our friend, Carrie Thompson, recently published her new book, Unremembered.

Here is the description of Carrie's book:

In a time when everybody has a pressure on their mind, who will think for those whose thoughts are full? When each and every person is totally absorbed in their own joys and trials, who will hope for those whose hopes are withered? When time is expensive and nobody has any extra, who will live for those whose lives are stretched? When pain and sorrow are mixed with joy and love, who will feel for those whose feelings are spent? When workloads increase and get harder, who will serve those whose service has passed? When memories are high and much is forgotten, who will remember the Unremembered?

Carrie Thompson is one of ten children living on a farm in the country. Currently a freshman in college, she enjoys reading, writing, speaking, and law. Her passions include working with the disabled, the elderly, those with special needs, and children. After finishings her BA degree, she plans to go to law school. 

We encourage you to support Carrie by going and buying this book right here!

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Liebster award!

So, we got a blog award! How did this happen?
We were awarded the Liebster award by Bethany Strang! Thank you so much Bethany!

The Liebster Award exists to help bloggers get to know each other and spread the word about your blog and the blogs you love!

Here are the rules:

Acknowledge the blog that nominated you. 
Answer the 11 questions the nominating blogger created. 
List 11 bloggers with less than 200 followers that deserve some recognition. 
Write 11 questions for them to answer.
Notify them they've been nominated.

So, here are the 11 questions Bethany gave us
(we had one person from the family answer one question each):

1. Besides family, who do you admire and why?
Lydia: Matt and Christy Taylor - their love for God shines through
the songs they sing and their CD's are AMAZING!!

2. Awkward moment?
Mary: I had to lip sink the words to a high part on a song that we as a family were singing :)

3. How do you plan to impact the future for Christ?
Melody: By God's grace, here are three ways I want to impact the future for Christ:

I want to invest in the spiritual lives of others - encouraging friends in their walk with the Lord, witnessing to the lost.

I want to show others the power of Scripture memory - When God's word is deeply rooted in your mind, you literally breathe Scripture. It automatically comes to mind in whatever situation you find yourself, and it is the powerful sword of the Spirit that cuts through our sin and shapes us into Christ's image.

I want to teach about the influence of music by word and example - The lyrics of our hymnody can shape our view of God, and I am passionate about promoting a biblical view of God in my own music. Also, the music itself can literally change culture as it has in America, so I want to teach my music students and those who hear us play, that music has meaning; it can be used for good and evil.

4. What makes you laugh?
Rebecca: Joseph and his humor :)

5. What do you love about your best friend?
Joseph: They are Christian young men and are fun to talk to!

6. What is something you want to do someday?
Caleb: Be an auto mechanic

7. Is there something that you would have never dreamed of doing, yet you are doing today?
Pat and Lorie: Being parents of 10 children :) We love it!

8. What is your favorite state and why?
Jonathan: Michigan is my favorite state because we have a wide range of weather, warm in the summer, and decent snowfall in the winter. My least favorite season is construction :) Also, other great advantages to living in Michigan: it doesn't get hurricanes, mud slides, major droughts (excluding the Detroit Lions) or tidal waves.

9. When I say exciting moment, what comes to mind?
Anna: Laughing with my family and just being together (I'm thankful - God is good). A resolution in a musical piece that just gives you that feeling (often the ending or the recap, for all you musical people:). Impacting lives for Christ and seeing them follow Him. Thinking of Annie's Macaroni for lunch (aahhhh!!!!). A thousand other things that I can't think of right now. I-could-fly-over-skyscrapers moments, such as light bulb moments during my time with God, when I had a really good music lesson and am ready to attack my practice time, or receiving the exact encouragement I needed to take the next step in faith.

10. Do you love what you do?
Grace: Yes! The Lord has richly blessed. I am privileged to be a daughter in my father's home, serving my family during the years I am here. The Lord has also given me the opportunity to minister through music in several different areas - I currently teach private lessons to about 30 piano and violin students, and accompany the choirs at our church's school. Something else I absolutely love that the Lord has given me to do is to direct the Orion Chamber Music Society String Camp every summer, as well as to coordinate the Michigan Association of Christian Schools Fine Arts Festival every winter. I love where the Lord has me right now!

11. What are some goals you hope to accomplish?
Julia: Learn to swim and be a mother!

Here are the 11 blogs that we are awarding!

Beckman family:
Grove family:
Huron family:
Kwon family:
Krahn family:
Marshall family:
Mueller family:
Neely family:
Staddon family:
Strang family:
Sauve family:

Congrats to all of you!

And here are our questions:

1. Who has God used in your life and why?
2. What's your family's favorite food?
3. What is your family's ethnic background?
4. How many states has your family visited?
5. Where did your parents first meet?
6. What is your family's favorite book (besides the Bible) and why?
7. How has God been working in your family recently?
8. What is your parents' salvation testimony?
9. What is the age range between the oldest and the youngest child
in your family and how old was your mom for each?
10. How has God used trials in your family's life to bring you closer to Him?
11. What is your family's favorite verse and why?

We had a lot of fun doing this Bethany! Thanks again!

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Primary Election

Since Jon was working for Tom McMillin on his campaign,
we were volunteered to do some work as well :)

We made over 1,000 phone calls, walked in a couple of parades, and did door-to-door campaigning.
Here are some pics from the past month:

Jon and David hard at work!

Dad got to be the driver of our Grandpa's '48 Coupe in the parade!

Grandpa's car was the star of the parade :)

Go Tom McMillin!

We've got our act together :)

Jonathan Beckman helped when he was down
here with his family - thank you Jonathan!

Jon even had Julia do some computer work with Rebecca!

Posing on the stairs at Headquarters - so beautiful!

Mary was able to record a robo call that was sent out to more than 20,000 people!

We really appreciated Luke and Kit's hard work in helping us with the campaign!

Making phone calls

Caleb did an excellent job encouraging people to vote for Tom!

At the polls on election day, it was raining, so Grace and Mary had to go in the car.

With 7 hours of sitting at the polls - waving and crocheting, Mary was tuckered out :)

All of us kids with Tom on election night!

Although the results were not as we had hoped, we know that God has a plan
and will guide and direct in the future.
We were privileged to help out such a great candidate as Tom,
with strong traditional Christian values. 
In the upcoming general election in November, we would encourage you
to support good candidates with your financial and volunteer resources.

It does make a difference!

"If my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land."
~ 2 Chronicles 7:14