Monthly Archives: July 2011

mr. mom//days 4-8

First of all, let me apologize for the large pictures.  I was uploading them from my phone.

The days are running together now.  Wednesday is always a long day.  This Wednesday started with an hour of dropping kids off.  I never imagined it would take me that long!  But there is so much to do.  And I am so thankful all of our friends who are helping with the kids.  And the food!  We have no lack.  Thank you all.

At the end of Wednesday, our preschool minister took Ellie and Kate home with her.  They put Ellie’s hair in pig tails:



When they got home, her husband told Ellie that they don’t run in the house.  She said, “seriously?”

Thursday, one of our college student friends kept the kids at home.  They baked cupcakes!


That night, Kate prayed that Sonya would get home safely and that I would be able to drink coffee.  What a sweetie.

Friday is my day off so it’s the day to get things done.  Like getting Brotey fitted for his tux in an upcoming wedding and shopping.  He was really into it.










That night we had creative quesadilla night.  We put the left over ingredients from the pizza night into quesadillas.  They were pretty good.



Victoria really pushed the envelope by making pasta and creating a cheesy pasta taco.  She hopes to have a cooking show someday called “Better Than Yuck.”




Then we watched movies in the basement and camped out down there.

This morning I made chocolate chip pancakes.


Everyone except Kate thought they were great. I’m just glad that I didn’t burn any.

I put peanut butter, syrup, and chocolate syrup on mine.


Then, Ellie did her own makeup.



Everyone is doing well, but we really miss Sonya.  We’ve heard from her several times.  They start the children’s camp tomorrow.  So, please pray for strength, stamina, and health for the team.  They’ve already met some of the kids and built some relationships.  It is going to be a great week.  Pray for God to move in the lives of many.  The fields are white for the harvest.


Mr. Mom – Days 2, 3 and 4//Kate report

There is so much going on right now. It’s hard to describe it all. Sonya’s gone. I’m on vocal rest. Kate possibly has arthritis. And, Monday was my birthday. So, summing it up is difficult. Here are some highlights:

Day 2

Ellie is “calling” Sonya a lot on her play phone. And she also asks, “Where’s mommy?” all the time. We say, “Africa” and she says “Oh.”

We’ve been blessed with some amazing friends who are helping so much this week. Each Saturday night the kids are staying with someone who then brings them to church on Sunday. Keeps them from having to get there so early with me and me from having to get them ready before the break of dawn! That made Sunday so much easier. Again, we are so blessed. We did discover, though, that Ellie can now climb out of her pack-n-play. Not sure what to do about that.

We ate at some friend’s house for lunch yesterday. While there, we told Ellie that she couldn’t jump on the exercise trampoline without shoes. So she walked right over to the fridge, grabbed a magnet shaped like a flipflop and tried to put it on. When it didn’t fit, she said, “It doesn’t fit.” and went about her business.

Day 3

Then, last night was crazy with Ellie. She was up forever and climbed out of her crib for the first time. Really not sure what to do about that. Any suggestions?

Today, we had Kate’s first rheumatology visit. The appointment was a 9am in St. Louis. We had to be there at 8:30. It’s 2 hours away. Once again, a precious soul took Ellie at 6:30. The rest of us headed up for the visit. The visit went well. It will still take another three weeks to diagnose her symptoms as arthritis, but if that’s what it is and it stays in the one knee, that will be a blessing. Much easier to treat.


I was reminded again of how bad I am at this Mr. Mom thing when Kate asked if we had any snacks on the trip. Of course we had no snacks. Mommy packs those!

After the visit we went to the science center and hung out for my birthday. We had a blast. It was so special.




I don’t guess I’ve ever gotten to spend time like that with our four older ones. In the middle of it all, we went to the Macaroni Grill for lunch. They treated me so special. They even snuck around and told the waitress that it was my birthday. Of course I could see what they were doing which made it all the more fun. They brought me the Ghirardelli chocolate cake. It was amazing! The cake is in a bowl and comes with a little bowl of chocolate dipping sauce and a blob of whipped cream with toffy and chocolate bits in it. A-ma-zing. It looks a little something like this:


But the best part of that day: Sonya called. I can’t tell you how incredible it felt to talk to her. I miss her so much. But I am so glad that she is there doing what she is doing. That God is going to use her the way He is. Still, I’m counting the days until she returns.

At the end of the day, they put four candles in a cupcake and sang Happy Birthday to me. It was a very special version.


All in all, it was a great day. A very special birthday. Only thing that would have made it better? Sonya here, of course!

Day 4

Everyone slept good through night so I felt a little better. Sarah Dodge kept the kids at the house and they all had a blast. While she was there she made homemade pizza for our dinner! It rocked! I mean really. It was good. The older kids went swimming with some friends while Ellie and I spent some one-on-one time. It was really nice. We sang “Ring Around the Rosie” and hit the ground more times than I care to remember. But her laugh and the phrase “Do it again, Daddy!” are all worth it.


Still, counting the days until August 6.




Day 1

This is the first full day without Sonya. She road to Gadsden yesterday, then boarded the plane in today. She flew to Atlanta (doesn’t everybody?). And now she’s on her way to Amsterdam.

From there, Nairobi!

I’m so proud of her. She was nervous about flying. But today, God gave her excitement. She was nervous about leaving us for 2 weeks, but God has provided so much love and help from our Lynwood family. She is awesome and I know that God is going to do tremendous things through her this week. I know that He’s going to do great things in her as well.

It’s hard sitting here tonight without her on the couch beside me. This would be our coffee time. Then we’d get ready for bed and turn in early because Sunday is an early morning. And I’ll miss her so much during worship tomorrow (especially since I can’t sing right now, post to come later). But I’m so glad she went. She heard God’s call and answered as she should have – obediently! I can’t wait to hear all about it. And I’m so thankful for the example she is to our kids. True courage not the lack of fear, but doing the right thing even when you are scared. That’s my girl. Courageous.

She’s also being a mentor to this sweet girl from Gadsden:

She’s my favorite person in the world.  Sonya, that is!  No disrespect to Holly.  She’s sweet too.

We all miss you, Sonya. I love you more than I can say.




Oh, and Bozeman was there to see them off as well.

and a child…

…shall lead them.  Isn’t that how it goes?  What is that from anyway?  If it’s the bible, then I’m really embarrassed.

Anyway, that’s what happened last week.  When we had to go to St. Louis with Kate there was one more day of VBS left to go.  Sonya and I were doing the music.  So what did they do?  They asked the kids to lead.  Our Victoria sang while Emma joined a few others to lead the motions.  I can’t tell you how proud I am of them.  Just wish I had a video or some pics.

And, I haven’t written a post about this yet, but Victoria has been writing songs.  Good songs.  I started working with her last week to chord one of them and make sure it fits rhythmically.  I’ll record it as soon as I can and post it.

Yeah, “a child shall lead them” is from Isaiah 11:6.  I googled it just so I’d know.  And now you do too.

You’re welcome.


Kate’s big adventure//home now

Update:  Yesterday afternoon Kate saw a team of rheumatologists.  They agree that everything looks like Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis (JIA) but an official diagnosis is takes time to come to.  First, you have to rule out every other thing.  We’ve done a good bit of that.  Only time will rule other things out.  Which brings me to the next step: the problem must last for 6 weeks.  So, we see the rheumatologist in 2 weeks to check her progress.  If things are the same, then we will schedule another appointment to make an official diagnosis.

Thank you all so much for praying and helping out.  We are extremely blessed by our Lynwood family.  We have not been in need of anything.  Thank you.


Kate’s big adventure//what next

Many of you have seen our FaceBook posts and Tweets about Kate. Here’s the story:

Kate woke up Monday, July 4, with a swollen, sore knee. No reason. No trauma. Tuesday she started running a fever that reached 102.5. Wednesday, we took her to Dr. Hoffman and she was still running fever and an inflamatory marker was elevated. After blood tests, leukemia was ruled out, but bacterial infection and even staph were still among the worst “unknowns.” Both would require surgery to clean and I.V. antibiotics. So, the best option was to go to Children’s Hospital in St. Louis, let them test, and if anything needed to be done they could do it there. We went to the ER and saw three doctors: a resident, the attending, and a pediatric orthopedist. At 1:50a.m. they put her out and removed some fluid. The tests came back negative for all the bad stuff, so they sent us home. We got home right after 5a.m. No diagnosis, just “give her some Ibuprofen” and keep a watch on it.

Every morning it is swollen and sore. She usually asks to be carried down stairs. After Ibuprofen and a little time it gets better. Still swollen and sore but she can walk and even run some.

Yesterday, when she woke, her knee was visibly more swollen, the pain was pretty bad, and her fever returned. So, they admitted her yesterday to Children’s Hospital in St. Louis for testing. We will see a rheumatologist this afternoon and get some recommendations.  The suspicion is Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis.


Kate is handling this well. In fact, this is like a little adventure. She gets breakfast in bed,


special guests who bring her toys, and check out our view:


We like to pretend that we’re in a luxurious 5th Avenue apartment overlooking Central Park.  It’s kind of like princess living. Accept for the doctors and needles!

Please pray for our little girl.


my favorite person in the whole land//the birthday girl

Today is a big day. It’s the anniversary of the day my favorite person in the whole land took her first breath.

## years ago my bride was born in New Orleans, LA.  Her parents were in seminary.  Her father studying to be a pastor.  They ate at Pancho’s Mexican Buffet often because it was cheap.  We figure that’s why she likes mexican food so much.

But she’s not a Louisianian (is that what you call them?), oh no, she’s really from LA.  Lower Alabama.  Well, that’s where her family is from.  As a pastor’s kid she lived in rural Alabama and mainly in Fort Walton Beach, FL and Tampa, FL.  But I don’t really think she’s a Floridian either (I’m pretty confident about that one). Together, we’ve lived in Mobile, AL, Louisville, KY, Little Rock, AR, Gadsden, AL, and now Cape Girardeau, MO.  Following God is one crazy, awesome adventure.  And just over a year ago began the next leg of that journey.

And after a wild year, I have to say that I’ve never been prouder of her than I am right now.  This year has been crazy.  Lots of sickness.  Two house payments.  A dog.  Thousands of miles in the car for weddings, anniversaries, and funerals. A miscarriage.  And last week,

all night in the Children’s Hospital in St. Louis with a child with a mysterious swollen knee. Has she been tired?  Oh yeah.  Has she been upset?  You bet.  But she clings to the knowledge that we are in God’s will and that His plans for us are the best.  And that even when He leads us through testing, fire and water, and crushing burdens, His ultimate goal for us is a place of abundance (Psalm 66:10-12). Her faith never waivers.

I love her more than words can say.  Way more than my actions usually show.  Her kids adore her.  Way way more than their actions usually show! She is a precious jewel and a woman after God’s heart.  She’s my favorite person in the whole land.  She’s my friend and my wife.  I am so blessed.

Oh, and did I mention that she’s hot?