Jul 12

Children are a Heritage from the Lord…

Each day, we wake up to our little blessing making her little noises, alerting us that it is time to rise and shine! Although some of the mornings are rather early (especially after a late night), one look at her precious face and you can’t help but smile back!

These two are my all time favorites!


Here’s a few photos of Sauntina as she begins “talking” to us and laughing in delight!

Playing with Daddy and her little friend, Claire.2012_07_28_KLS_00072012_07_28_KLS_0018She "talks" so often with her tongue!Uncle Daniel!And inbetween the smiles, there are other cries. :)2012_07_29_KLS_00262012_07_29_KLS_0045

Precious, little baby Sauntina!

Jul 12

Join us at Chick-fil-A on August 1st!

I received an email this morning about Chick-fil-A and the stand they’re taking to firmly and vocally support God’s perfect design for marriage and the family. The article below says the rest…


Boston Mayor Vows to Ban Chick-fil-A
by Karla Dial

The nation’s second-largest fast-food chicken chain has been taking fire from gay activists since its president reaffirmed his ­ and the company’s ­ support for biblical values in a recent interview.

“We are very much supportive of the family ­ the biblical definition of the family unit,” Chick-fil-A Chief Operating Officer Dan Cathy said in a recent radio interview. “And I pray God’s mercy on our generation that has such a prideful, arrogant attitude that thinks we have the audacity to redefine what marriage is all about.”

On Friday, the Jim Henson Company announced it is severing ties with Chick-fil-A, just days into a promotional campaign; CEO Lisa Henson ordered the company to donate the money from Chick-fil-A to the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation. And Boston Mayor Thomas Mennino announced plans to make it “very difficult” for anyone to open a Chick-fil-A franchise unless the company changes its stance on same-sex marriage.

As a result, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee is calling on all those who support biblical values to show the restaurant chain their appreciation on Aug. 1.

“Too often, those on the left make corporate statements to show support for same-sex marriage, abortion, or profanity, but if Christians affirm traditional values, we’re considered homophobic, fundamentalists, hate-mongers and intolerant,” Huckabee wrote on his Facebook page. “There’s no need for anyone to be angry or engage in a verbal battle. Simply affirm appreciation for a company run by Christian principles by showing up on Wednesday, Aug. 1 or by participating online.”

Yes, we're going back a little in time, but it's the only picture I had of Chick-fil-A!

Jul 12

At last!

Yes indeed! It’s about time I updated again after these long weeks of silence! Sauntina has changed so much since the last pictures I posted and so here is a little taste of the last couple of months!

Dido & Nana Kowalchuk!With Aunt Aleita!2012_06_03_KLS_0092The Pendergast Family came to visit Chicago for an entire week!!!  It was so good to have the kiddos back again!I was able to meet Corrie's baby, Kristyn, for the first time and Corrie met Sauntina!Sharon came back from serving in the Philippines and we snagged her for a visit one afternoon.  :)Sauntina LOVES spending time with Daddy!Our one year anniversary!2012_06_11_KLS_0032Celebrating Father's Day!She won't be this size for too much longer. :)


This past weekend, we went down to West Virginia for the FEW Conference (Family Encouragement Weekend) and also so that the other family members could meet Sauntina. She was the center of activity for the entire weekend and I just saw glimpses of her here and there as people held her and passed her around!

Grandma & Grandpa Brannon taking an evening walk.4th of July volleyball game!!!2012_07_05_KLS_0002Sautina loved Grandma Brannon!We celebrated Robert's birthday with the Wilkes, Neely and Staddon family.  It was a big birthday celebration!

Meeting Grandma Brown and Uncle Alan!

This was Sauntina's sleeping space during our visit. It was just perfect. :)

Jul 12

A Fun Date Night!


Jun 12

One Year Ago Today…


Happy 1st Anniversary, Kendalyn!
I love you! <3

May 12

Two Weeks!

Time is flying by so quickly and our little daughter is two weeks old all ready!  She’s had quite a few visitors, won the hearts of many, and continues to grow steadily. Robert and I are very blessed!

Sauntina just a few hours after she was born!Daddy weighing her - 8 lbs 3 oz!Daddy putting on her first diaper.  :)Ata Becky with Sauntina at the baby shower!2012_05_11_KLS_0025Sauntina at 2 days oldNana & Sauntina on Mother's Day!My first Mother's Day...celebrated with my own mother and mother-in-law!Sauntina's first lesson in piano appreciation with her Daddy!  :)Mother's Day family picture!2012_05_13_KLS_00372012_05_17_KLS_0006Nana & SauntinaWelcome to our world, beautiful daughter!

May 12

Sauntina LaVerle

The Staddon family

Our little daughter, Sauntina LaVerle, has arrived!  Born a week and a half early, Sauntina entered the world on Wednesday afternoon at 1:11 PM. She weighs 8 lbs., 3 oz., and is 20 inches long.  Kendalyn was in intense labor for about 5 hours and had our little girl a few hours before her mother arrived from Alberta, Canada (who was on her way down to help with the birth! <g>).

Our neighbors helped us inflate and fill a tub for the water birth, and a dear lady from down the street stayed with Kendalyn the entire time since our midwife hadn’t arrived yet.  Sauntina didn’t want to wait for the midwife and came 2 minutes before she arrived and into the arms of her father, who scooped her up and praised the Lord for a safe delivery with no complications.

We are blessed with a beautiful little family! Mother and baby are recovering slowly, but well.  Thank you for your prayers!

May 12

The time is drawing nearer…

We are less than two weeks away from the due date and we are excitedly waiting for the day when our little one will enter the world!  My Mama sent a picture of Mama & Dad’s first child (me!) and now their firstborn is about to have HER firstborn!  I gratefully think back on how the Lord raised me in a Christian home with parents who love the Lord and do whatever He asks them to do, go wherever He leads, and be whomever He wants them to be.  Praise the Lord for a Godly heritage and may we walk in our parents’ footsteps!

Here’s some pictures of when I was a little girl:

Just a few weeks old!Marilyn & Kendall Kowalchuk with Baby KendalynDad and little Kendalyn at Grandma & Grandpa's house!IMG_0005

And here is one adorable baby picture of Robert’s.  I know I have more of them somewhere, but cannot locate them at the moment so we shall do a more thorough representation of his cute childhood stages in a later blog post!


Apr 12

April summary…

Baby Staddon is growing and starting to run out of room!  Here’s a picture of him/her at 33 1/2 weeks along!  Note the BEAUTIFUL red bud tree in the  background!  We are blessed to have such a lovely front yard!


April 11th, we experienced our very first Passover Seder here in our home.  Robert and I have never been to one before, but he led the group with a book written out for the event and did an incredible job! I was fascinated by all the symbolism and meaning behind everything the children of Israel did in remembrance of what the Lord brought them through to enter the Promised Land. It was a beautiful time of reflection on how the Lord keeps His promises and leads His dear children along. We had a full house with about 30 guests attending with us.



We were blessed to have my dear friend, Amanda, and her husband, Jonathan Reinke, here for a couple days mid-April. I haven’t seen Mandi for four years since her wedding so it was wonderful catching up with her, getting to know her husband better, and meeting her two beautiful children! We had many hours of visiting, took them to downtown Chicago to see the sights, visited the Shedd Aquarium (little Brooklyn loved all the fish!), and took them to a Chick-Fil-A for their first time (Micah wasn’t quite sure what to make of the big cow).  Smile  It was a wonderful visit!

Brittany Smith came for a visit to see Mandi - so wonderful to be surrounded by good friends!Visiting the Shedd Acquarium!2012_04_14_KLS_0002Brooklyn and I had an instant friendship. :)L-R: Micah (1), Mandi, Jonathan, and Brooklyn (2 1/2) Reinke!Chick-Fil-A!

We celebrated two birthdays this month: James’ and Daniel’s! James came to visit a little after his birthday and we went out to eat at tasty Taco Grill. Then we came back to the house and played some games with Clayton Reedstrom. For Daniel’s birthday, we had a small group over and played speed Scrabble with edible alphabet cookies (they tasted kind of like animal crackers) that his family had sent him!  It was so much fun! Happy Birthday to James and Daniel!


And last, but not least, here’s the most recent picture of Baby Staddon at 36 1/2 weeks! We shall get to meet him/her soon!!!

Baby Staddon

Apr 12

March Summary…

March was full of guests, fun, laughter, and adventure! To begin the month, Chad and Alissa Christiansen came up to the Chicago Headquarters to teach the staff their In The Gap training. We were blessed with many valuable tips on how to witness to children, teach children character, and boldly share your faith. Robert’s sister, Esther, came to help teach and added a fun dimension on the skits and lesson plans! We ended our time with the Christiansens by celebrating Alissa’s birthday at our home ~ complete with a DELICIOUS ice cream cake the girls’ made!



The Staddons have been working on editing a book on music written by Dad Staddon and this was the final editing session! Woohoo!



One afternoon, Liz Miller, Claire and I went out with Ara before she left for home. That is one difficult part about living around here…the staff changes and you make friends, then receive the opportunity to continue praying for them as they head home to minister in their community. God bless you, Ara!




Robert and I have been attending monthly meeting and appointments with our midwife, and there is the greatest state park on our way home: Starved Rock. It always provides a nice walk after a long drive and I love the smell of trees and plants just beginning to bloom in the spring! Baby “KeBo” is about 30 weeks along in this picture!



A group of us enjoyed fellowship at Cracker Barrel one Sunday afternoon. I tried grits for the first time, and let’s just say that Robert finished them. I have yet to acquire a taste for this particular southern food!



With all the wonderful things that have happened this month, one of the best for me was having my brother, Jevenn, come to visit! I hadn’t seen him since our wedding last June so we had much catching up to do! He stayed for 10 days…and did we ever pack things into those 10 days, too!

Daniel, Jevenn, Robert and Barak played a timed game of Settlers of Catan while I held the stop watch and kept this potentially long game moving. :)Marty treated us out to the Pizza Company & Oven Grinders - fabulous food!What visit would be complete without an Axis & Allies game? While they played, I kept them fed.  :)