Family News

Apr 13

Fun with Company!

We’ve enjoyed the company of part of the Stelzl family for  two weekends, fitting as much as we could into the few days they were here! During the first weekend, Mr. & Mrs. Stelzl, Sarah, and the three of us toured downtown Chicago and they treated us to a ride on the lake/architectural riverboat tour! Finished the day with a tasty supper at Giordano’s!


The following weekend, Mrs. Stelzl and Sarah joined us for a busy weekend visiting friends, going back to Chicago to see Navy Pier, and a very fun activity…shopping! The Stelzls bough Sauntina a new, light blue summer dress. She looked like a little princess! We also visited Pacific Garden Mission and listened to a live performance of “Unshakled!”



Last weekend, Mom, Dad, and David Staddon drove 10 hours to surprise Daniel for his birthday! We played many ROOK card games, enjoyed laughter around the table, and a rousing game of mini golf…in the rain!

Uncle James!Happy Birthday, Daniel!Surrounded by guys doing pushups. :)Watching David practice violin...Down time with Grandma. <3Celebrating Daniel's birthday in a big way!Mini golf!

Apr 13

The Little One is Growing!

We’re starting to see a little bump from our second sweet baby! 15 weeks along and I’m feeling so much better now that the morning sickness is over! Happy spring!


Apr 13

Easter Joys!

Happy Resurrection Day and may we remember His sacrifice all throughout the year! This was Sauntina’s first Easter and we enjoyed spending the morning in church listening to the story of Jesus’ resurrection and what it means for Christians. How blessed we are live with hope and JOY!

Here’s a glimpse of our first Easter all together…and what a range of emotions Sauntina had!


The Olson family invited us for a delicious meal and fellowship for the afternoon…what a blessing to have new friends. Robert enjoyed a hearty game of hockey with their son and a friend!



Later that day, Sauntina had her first egg hunt with her neighbor, Claire! She was thrilled with the brightly colored plastic eggs, but she was not so excited about her first experience with grass (thus the tears in some pictures). SmileIt was a lovely day!


Mar 13

Welcome Paul William Waller!

After 26 hours of labor, David and Priscilla met their little son, Paul, last Saturday, March 16th. We were blessed to meet Paul when he was just hours old – what a precious baby!


Less than a week later, we held a baby shower for Paul and everyone enjoyed meeting the newest addition to the staff! Thank you, Lydia Waller, for taking the pictures!

Here comes the happy couple!My neighbor, Claire!Esther with baby Paul!Mrs. Barth gave the was wonderful!Julie, Grace & Amy!Sauntina loved Bernida. :)Sauntina inspecting David's "father" gift. :)

Mar 13

A Few Extras…

We have battled the stomach flu and cold in our home this past week…and come out victorious! Due to our illness, we haven’t done much lately but here are some extra glimpses into different activities we’ve enjoyed this new year!

Visit and supper with Mr. Stelzl!Sauntina's first harp lesson with Becky!Yeah! More diapers!...and a free box!Bath time. <3

Sauntina's favorite babysitter...Aunt Esther!Experimenting...and enjoying...homemade fruit leather!Playing piano with Daddy. <3

Mar 13

A New Heartbeat!

(This is a sneak preview of version 2.0. The full release is scheduled for September 30, 2013!)

Mar 13

The Staddons Visit!

Dad & Mom Staddon, Donald and David drove up from West Virginia to surprise Esther for her birthday a few weeks ago…and they succeeded, too! It was so much fun to have them here for five days and we fit a lot into those days together. Thanks to the tip from a grocery bagger, we visited the ice sculpting in Downer’s Grove and despite the nip in the wind, enjoyed the varied and unique sculptures everywhere.

Sauntina enjoying some homemade apple fruit leather!Part of Esther's "party"...a trip to see ice sculpters!Esther & her "little" brother, David!Happy Birthday, Esther!Girl time!This little girl is learning how to stand holding on to things...and she loved watching her uncles!Happy grandparents and granddaughter!

Last week, Robert and I planned a spontaneous trip to Indianapolis to meet the McDowell’s newest little addition and see friends at South Campus. It was a short, full, fun trip indeed!

Meeting Baby Grace for the first time!Sauntina & Rebekah playing with RobertDarra McDowell with her beautiful baby!The McDowells took us downtown Indianapolis to see the former Indianapolis Training Center...completely renovated!L to R: Cameron & Rebekah (daughter Abigail), Us!, Nathaniel & Darra (daughters Rebekah and Baby Grace), Ryan & Charity (their daugther went to bed:). Between the four couples, there were five girls!

Feb 13

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Valentine’s Day had always been a mixture of emotions when I was single due to the emphasis on love, romance, and having that “special someone.” My Mama helped change this view years ago when she excitedly celebrated this special day with a special dessert, a small gift (like a new pencil set for school!), and an extra candy or two! She captured the true meaning of this  day…showing love towards others and making them feel special! It’s a beautiful day to watch fathers making their daughters feel special with a small gift, a son to his mother, and a brother to his sister. Isn’t that exactly what Jesus did for us? He not only told us we were special, but demonstrated it on the cross and thus removed our penalty for sin completely and forever if we accept Him. Now THAT is true love!

This was my second Valentines to actually have my very own handsome, wonderful valentine! And not just one this year, but a sweet, cuddly, tiny one, too!

Robert gave me a lovely classical CD mixed with some romantic instrumental songs called Everlasting Love, a tribute to the 50th wedding anniversary of friends of the artist, and my little darling had to promptly test it out. 🙂 I guess it passed inspection because I was allowed to have it back and listen to it that afternoon! Robert also gave me a beautiful bouquet of spring colored roses still in bud, and I have enjoyed watching them blossom these last couple of days! I even caught Sauntina trying to nab one of my roses!

IMG_20130213_162251IMG_20130214_135940 (1)

Praise the Lord for His Valentine’s gift to us…and the blessing of loved ones near and afar. We have so much for which to be thankful!

Feb 13

Happy Birthday, Mama!

Although thousands of miles separate us, I’m so grateful for technology that allows us to call, Skype, text, and share pictures with my family in Canada…and today is no exception! It’s my sweet Mama’s birthday today!

There is so much I could say about her, but I’ll narrow it to just a few special memories. Mama has always been a classy dresser and tried hard to pass it along to us. I remember groaning, age 9 or 10, when Mama chose our outfits when we were going out somewhere special – a nice white t-shirt or button up shirt with a nice, coordinating pair of shorts or skirt. Looking back on pictures, I’m so glad she stuck with it! The outfits that she chose were so classy looking, neat and clean. However, Mama also believed in allowing children to be children and there was one time when she decided to let me where whatever I wished…and we were going to the Focus on the Family headquarters none the less! Guess what my attire was! A floral pink pair of shorts with a pink plaid top! My choice was simple…wear my favorite shorts and my favorite top (who cared if it matched?!?!). Mama had such patience with us!

Mama’s ability to tackle daunting tasks and finish jobs until they’re complete has always amazed me. If it’s not renovating their home, then it’s making 50+ freezer meals for Robert and I last May! I used to wonder why Mama would come alive around 5 in the evening…and since I now have a baby, I understand! That’s when you make supper, feed the baby, play for a short time, then they are off to bed and you can tackle some jobs uninterrupted! How Mama made homemade bread, canned jams, vegetables, and fruit, grew a large garden, looked after sheep, washed cloth diapers, raised four children under 6, ran a home, sat and took time with Dad each evening, cooked for company, kept the house clean, did all the laundry herself, and sold Mary Kay, I shall never know but I now have a whole new appreciation!

Thank you, Mama, for you wonderful example of motherhood for me to follow and I pray this new year will be the best you’ve had yet! We love you!

2011_Wedding_Kendalyn_KLS_00502011_Wedding_Kendalyn_KLS_0052Then there were two...Three kiddos...And four!Aleita and I celebrating our graduation day together!

Mama helping me get ready for my wedding - June 20112011_06_11_KABK_0080One more prayer time with my parents before marrying Robert!


Jan 13

30th Anniversary Celebration!

In a day where only half of couples who marry stay married, we very happily celebrated my parents’ 30th anniversary with a fancy dinner during the Christmas holidays! Although their anniversary had bee in August, we weren’t able to celebrate together until now! Everyone dressed up in their finest, Kathlyn and Sauntina wore their adorable southern belle dresses from Nana & Dido, Able looked dapper in his little infant tie and vest, and we all gathered for a family picture and conversation over a delicious dinner.

Thank you, Mama & Dad, for your Godly example of living for Jesus, for taking Him at His Word, and for showing us by example how to read and apply God’s Word. We have had so many adventures in our years past and seen the Lord work out impossible situations; we’ve been through tight financial times (when we children hadn’t a clue because you all made it so fun with simple blessings and inexpensive joys…like playing fort with cardboard boxes!); we’ve moved many, many times; lived in two different countries; and had various emergencies where the Lord gave grace and no one was injured for life.

Happy Anniversary and may your adventures continue!!!

Nana & Dido with their grandchildren!Kowalchuk Family Picture - 2012! Thank you, Kerzdenn, for these pictures!

We attempted a picture of the two girl cousins together...and this was the best we could get. :)Kathlyn and Able!


Doesn't that look melt your heart? And behind every picture with a smiling baby is a person/group that makes them smile!My dear, sweet parents!

We love you!