Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Holiday Funnies

Now that the two big girls have cell phones, and the biggest girl has a social media account, we enjoy passing back and forth things that strike our funny bones.  Maybe one of these will get yours, too:

Amanda Bell Kohl's cash rant

The Secret Life of Children, Improvising the Nativity Play

Christmas According to Kids, Southland Christian Church

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Holiday Weekend of Love

It has been a fun, festive and full weekend with family, friends, food, shopping, decorating, baking and lots of LOVE! What's not to be thankful for here?

Monday, November 21, 2016

Contextually Speaking

We have regular conversations in Krinkeland where the theme is "Consider the Source."  I remind people that someone can find a statistic to support whatever point is trying to be made.  Todd loves to rail against the "liberal media" and how there's no such thing as an unbiased news source.  We also talk about the danger of ever presuming someone's motive... how we should always take things at face value, and assume the purpose is for the greater good.

Then, there's the issue of context, and statements being taken out of context.  Regardless of who you are, what you believe, the color of your skin, which presidential candidate you supported, we all have thoughts that come from a certain framework and that translate into statements that all make up a larger picture.  We all know there is great danger in removing a singular statement from a larger body of words.  At the slightest, taking something out of context can just make things seem ODD.

For example, well, we have plenty of examples.  Within the past day or two in Krinkeland, the following statements have all been uttered, truly, and, if you don't know the wider context, we all sound NUTS:

"I know what that stoplight smells like-- metal! What do you mean you don't know what metal smells like?! Haven't you ever sniffed a quarter? Boom!"
"It's rather disappointing-- the past two days, my poop has been unremarkably normal."
"Well, are you going to the store to get me cat litter, or what?"
"My doctor called, and she said I have ebola."

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Honoring Death

In the past eight days, I have attended three memorial services.  I did not know any of the three people very well, but I knew enough about their well lived lives to want to honor them and for my presence to bring some shred of comfort to their families.  One friend, who lost her father to cancer, posted this tonight on social media:

These last couple weeks have seemed like a walk through the dark valley. Dads health was depleting before our eyes, and the end seemed horrifyingly close. I must admit I never thought I would emotionally survive losing my dad, but then something miraculous took place. God took my father home, and in turn He sent His angels (all our family and friends) to carry us through. To say we felt your prayers would be an understatement. There were times I literally had to check to... see if me feet were touching the ground, because I knew I was being carried. The love and generosity of hundreds in this community has left me speechless and my heart bursting at the seams. I can't put into mere words how grateful we all are for each and every kind gesture that has helped us through this valley. With tears streaming, I humbly offer each of you my deepest appreciation and thanks. The greatest legacy dad left all of us was the ideology that "in the end all that is important is the people you've loved." Today, I feel like I live quite possibly the most blessed life imaginable. God is good all the time, all of the time God is good. 

Our time here is but a moment.  Let us be honorable.  Let us make a difference.

Thursday, November 17, 2016

The White Snake

Our dazzling firstborn made her high school theater debut tonight in "The White Snake," an ensemble straight play based on an ancient Chinese folk tale. Just as Amanda described, it was a very pretty play... and our actor was very pretty, too. She had a gaggle of friends who came to watch her. I am so grateful for every experience our children have, and for the joy I experience in seeing them grow in all the ways God intends.

Tuesday, November 15, 2016


Between Todd's absence, with work trips that are getting more frequent and longer, and sick kids, and one who didn't sleep well last night, and my early morning workouts, and daylight savings time, 8 p.m. feels instead like midnight to me!  While two kids are already in bed, two more have not yet returned from their evening activities.  So, I carry on... we carry on...  This winding down time gives me time to reflect on everything I did not accomplish today, this week, this month, this year.  Fun!

On the list: family pictures.  It's been a couple years since we had nice photos taken, with our immediate family and/or with extended family on either side.  I just couldn't get it together to make that happen this year.  Thankfully, we have had a long, warm fall and Todd doesn't mind messing around with the camera, so Christmas cards will still happen.  Someone has cute, silly, sassy kids!

Monday, November 14, 2016


Lots going on around here... Daddy's gone and Mommy's going crazy... but the kids sure are cute!

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Cagey Cager

Benjamin is, this year, for the first time, playing on his school's basketball team. They had their first scrimmage this evening, and I guess at this point I would say "playing" might be a bit of an overstatement for our number 6, but he seemed to enjoy being with-- and bossing-- his teammates. He also is developing a knack for staying away from the ball and the action... just like his mama.

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

The Election

I am not going to write about the crazy  2016 presidential election. There's been enough yelling and name-calling in Krinkeland and all over this land. I voted... and I hope you did, too... Now, pray for everyone, every day, and love and live on.

I worked on election night, covering local and state returns and reactions from the county GOP headquarters, where I was assigned, for ECM Publishers and the Monticello Times newspaper. It was fun to be working, and it was really fun that my biggest girl tagged along to shadow me.

Reelected state representatives Joe McDonald (29A) and Marion O'Neill (29B)

Wright County GOP Chair Don Soupir and Amanda (He was also her middle school tech ed teacher.)

Reelected State Senator Bruce Anderson and Amanda

Monday, November 7, 2016

Bowling for Knowledge

Elisabeth competed in her first Knowledge Bowl meet of the season, with her new teammates at Buffalo Community Middle School. They didn't place, but they were a lot of fun to watch, and they sure seem to work well together. I love, love, love my girl's smile! And, for the record, two of the meet questions could be answered by knowledge of the musical "Hamilton."

Thursday, November 3, 2016

School Girl

We had to swing by the high school to make a delivery, just as class was getting out for the day. Madeline and I found ourselves in the throng of big kids. She clung to my arm with both of hers and mumbled into my elbow, "I am not ready for high school at this time." I assured her, "Of course, you're not, Baby. You're only seven. Just stick close to me. I'm not ready for you to go to high school, either." And, then, I found in her backpack school papers that show we have plenty of work to do before high school.