Archive for October 2011

Full House!   Leave a comment

Celebrating Gretel’s birthday, with a Packer party of course!

Is it fear or suspicion in her eyes???

These are three good friends and they are so much fun to be with.  Gretel did not have a jersey to that was her present from Karee and Annie.  Now they can show their undying love,  oops, I mean fan appreciation for their favorite quarterback together!

I am so glad that God gave us a large living room.  Every Packer game we have a normal group that attend due to not having cable at their home.  Our other friends know they are welcome to come to watch with us but I never know who may come or not.  By the half time of this game we had doubled in numbers and yet were not crowded at all.  What I thought would be an easy win turned into a stressful couple hours at the Minn. Vikings really put up a fight, a DIRTY one, I might add.  We still won which is what matter when it comes to sports, at least that is what Mr. Johnson says  🙂

Last week we got a call from a friend telling us to head outside and see the Northern Lights.  Since our home is surrounded by trees we sometimes miss seeing activity in the heavens.  We ran out the door and headed down to the docks from where there is a clear view to the north.  The sights was like nothing I have seen in the last 10 years, simply stunning and radiating from a single point in the sky.  It was incredible.  We also went into out cottage yard and they were beautiful there as well.  God was really showing off to delight His children and we were DELIGHTED and gave Him the proper praise for His work!

The heavens declare the glory of God and the firmament shows His handiwork,

Day unto day utters speech and night unto night reveals knowledge

There is no speech nor language where there voice is not heart

There line has gone out through all the earth and their words to the end of the earth!

Ps. 19

This is his tired look, still so cute.  Melody and I were getting ready to work on our flute/violin duets and I was warming up on the flute when Andrew looked at me and crinkled his face into tears and went running for Melody.  I guess I need to work on my pitch or something!

On Wednesdays Sammy comes over after school to play and eat supper and then go to club at church with our family.  We played battle ship last week and we had to end it in a “tie” lest there be tears, I am not saying who’s tears!

He is growing up and just turned nine.  Can’t believe it!  I am so glad for these times to be with him and to help him attend club so he is hearing about the God whom his mother loved and served so well.

The days are busy and fun as God weaves our lives with others from infants to older adults, young couples and singles, loving and serving them and enjoying blessing others and being blessed right back!  God is so great to make up this thing called relationship.  As iron sharpens iron or all hands on deck, or like floating on a lazy river, each relationship is different and yet beautiful.  We are thankful that our home can be used by God to minister to others and I have one happy husband when we head to bed at night after a full house of folks have been here.  Satisfying joy!

Blessed to be able to bless






Posted October 31, 2011 by joyfulhouse in Around the house, Door County Life, Family

Happenings in Oct.   Leave a comment


Jeni and Jason — Two years of marriage, God is so good.

Jason and Jeni came for the weekend and we had such a wonderful time.  Jason was recovering from an accident where he was rear-ended on the way to work.  Many prayed for him and he did not suffer nearly as badly as I have heard others suffer after whip lash.  God is so kind to answer our prayers on his behalf.  They left on Monday and you won’t believe this, but Jeni was rear-ended going into Milwaukee.  She was driving their other car while Jason was driving Matthew’s car which he loaned to Jason and Jeni until they purchased a new car.  Wild times!  We prayed again and Jeni was also covered by God’s healing hand and recovered quickly.



Love this bunch, love who they are and the joy they give us!

Beautiful, beautiful people


Matthew came up to fix a light on Kristi’s car and check out what was wrong with it.

He had lots of help and lots of blonde opinions, because we blondes love to share our thoughts when it come to car repair!

When he took it for a drive, Annie and Melody piled in and went with.  All they said when they got home was that “He went really fast”.  I DO NOT want to know those kind of things……. when will they learn that!

Precious brother, always quick to bless and help our family.


Melody was a help with Baley.  Baley is a city dog so we can’t let her loose or she might run away or run in the street.  We enjoy her.

Jazmin is a country dog so we can’t let her loose or she might run away or run in the street!  We enjoy her too!

We are doing a very focused year of Spanish.  We have signs around the house on objects to help us with associating the words to what they mean.  Jazmin has to wear this sign.  It makes her uncomfortable and sulky as she thought the sign should have read “human”.

Our dear friend Betty recently suffered from a serious illness.  Praise the Lord, she is being made well by prayers and medicine. We are taking care of her grandchildren to help the family.  Robyn has Mia and Betty’s son Eric and his wife have Andrew. When they are here they make the day very busy but so much fun.  I finally figured out how to get Andrew to nap so we are making progress at keeping his days in order.  He is such a sweety and we love both him and Mia.

This is Robyn.  She is the same age as Matthew and we have watched her grow up but only in the last five years have we really connected and spent lots of time together.  I love this young woman, our whole family does!  She is such a delight to be with and blesses our home with her kindness. God is doing a wonderful work in her life and we are blessed to know her.

Rick was home for lunch one day last week and we were trying to get a picture of Mia and her cousin Andrew together.  Mia would not leave Rick alone and wanted his applesauce which of course he freely shared with her.  He is such a softy with little ones!

Rick made sure that Andrew knew where to look on the internet to see the latest Packer news!  Aren’t his eyes just precious?  He loves sitting on “uncle Rick’s” lap.

We have enjoyed our October even though it has been the strangest for fishing on record.  I will have a separate post all about it soon.  We have done well with school and gardening and caring for these little ones.  We have had wonderful fellowship times in our homes with meals and watching great preaching, the Packer parties continue and Annie’s job has now ended for the season.  We have homes left to close down for our care-taking business and some cleaning to do but that is also winding down.  We celebrated Kristi’s birthday without her being with us and I survived. 🙂

Life is precious








Twenty years ago I went to my last Packer’s game, and then as our children got older I was replaced by them and learned to enjoy staying home to watch the game. It wasn’t like I attended every game, just one a year, but I missed going. So imagine my surprise when Rick invited me to go with him to the Rams game along with Annie and Melody. My first thought was that a flu must have wiped out everyone in the family and I was the only one left so they had to ask me! Not so, my husband just wanted to make me happy!   Leave a comment

When Rick invited me to go to the game it was like we were going on a date…..   you know, the kind of date where you take the children and 70,000 other folks…  It doesn’t matter to me, I just love being with him…. and the other blondes  🙂

Here are the other blondes.  It was a wild day at Lambeau, the wind was blowing at least 40 miles an hour so our hair was whipping around because we forgot clips or bands.  Not Rick’s hair of course as he crammed a Cummins hat on his head and that took care of that!

Things had changed since the last time I was at a game starting with the parking.  We parked not too far from the stadium on a family’s yard!  As we walked toward the stadium I noticed that this parking enterprise consumed the neighborhood and everyone had their signs out and every inch of lawn was covered with vehicles.  Some folks had speakers ( nice loud ones I might add) playing music and the party feel was in the air.  I was taking it all in when Annie gave me the warning that her father, my beloved, does not allow for strolling and that the walk to the stadium was to be done at a fast pace with all of us following behind in single file behind Rick.  I quickly shaped up and picked up my stride, good thing my pace is fast normally. 🙂

We walked into the stadium and I was immediately awed by all the changes they had made in the two decades since I had been to a game.  The sky boxes all around the edge gave the feeling of being in a coliseum and I had forgotten the sound of the excitement and the feeling of energy that is there at the game.  We followed our fearless leader closely, just as we had all the way through the masses and into our seats.  What fun!

As we stood for the national anthem my family pointed me to look right above the scoreboard, maybe 30 rows behind us, and I heard the man behind me comment that THEY ARE COMING! Within a second four or five air force jets went flying over us, so close that I could completely see the underside of the plane with every detail.  The sound reverberated around Lambeau and my heart pounded from the noise…… SO COOL!

So the game started, we cheered and yelled and high-fived with all around us.  I made friends with the ladies to my right and exchanged emails due to their interest in booking a cabin in Door County next year….  hey, a little business amidst the fun is not a bad thing!  The farmer and his son-in-law in front of me were friendly, more so as the beers went down.  I am a friendly person myself, although not so much with men, but my trying to remember how to draw the line with beer-drinking good ole’ boys got me a stern talking to from my husband at the half time.  I guess a few high fives and a couple responses to them was not pr0per conduct.  🙂    I got to practice being a snob the second half  🙂

Rick took us down for snacks and drinks just before the half and the girls and I made history!  Rick and I went off to the bathrooms, another huge change they have made as these were nice, and then we went to order snacks.  Although not too busy we did have to wait in line.  We ordered and then Annie went to another stand to get a juice as she does not drink soda.  We got our things and started to munch when I noticed Rick pacing…. and looking at the screen and pacing some more.  He looked at me and asked if I could make it back to the seats without him so he could get back into the game.  My blank look told him enough!   I could not remember which hall we came out of and he wanted me to find my way back!!!!!   he clearly forgot it had been 20 — yes TWENTY years since I had been there!   We waited a few more minutes, probably 10 minutes in all from the time we had left our seats, maybe 15, when Rick turned to me and stated emphatically, “This is the longest snack and potty break in the history of our family!”  I just about cracked up, really!!!   I wanted to remind him that in the winter when they all come in snowmobile suits which have to be removed to go to the bathroom ( at least the girls!) it MUST take longer then we had just taken.  But, I didn’t say anything, just smiled at my sweetheart and grabbed Annie to head back in.  I do love making history!

So much fun, being with our precious daughters,  history was made 🙂 , I got to practice being anti-social and the Packers won!

It was a good day,









Posted October 26, 2011 by joyfulhouse in Door County Life, Family, marriage, Packer Life

People are asking how Kristi is doing way off at college in a foreign land, VA! Here she is!   Leave a comment

      Here she is, beautiful as ever and her smile says it all.  Yes she misses family and Jazmin but she is doing well.  She is enjoying the teaching and especially making such wonderful friendships with other young men and women.  God is good!

This is her roommate Cierra, they are beautiful women of God

They help each other find there way around campus!!!  🙂  Aren’t their smiles beautiful!

This is Kristi planking…. new term for us.  She is mimicing the art form which is on top of the soda machines.  Crazy!

This is another figure made by the art department at Liberty.  It actually had a great message as You can read on the title in front of the picture.  The Trashy Heart is the name.  It symbolizes that what we take into our brains by reading, viewing and listening may trash our brain and our heart.  The figure was completely clear accept for the heart and the brain which were discolored.  Great reminder of a Biblical truth.  Reminds me of the Sunday school song, Oh Be Careful Little Eyes what You See!

This figure was so lovely — Kristi is lovely as well, as always.

Kristi usually saves this kind of a face for when she is watching the Packers and they are loosing!

I do love this look, mysterious and lovely at the same time!

First time trying on wigs… Red!  NO, NO, No, and again her father says NO!  He loves his blondes!

So, Kristi is growing in the Lord, and being challenged, she is having fun and enjoying new relationships

We are getting used to missing her and I have almost got the grocery change under control,  less milk, doritos and butter with her gone.

We love to talk on the phone with her, text and skype.

She comes home in 24 days, yes, we have a countdown as we cannot wait to see her, feed her good homecooking and hug her!

We love her and are proud of her.



Posted October 26, 2011 by joyfulhouse in Door County Life, Family

Life of a Commercial Fisherman’s Wife   Leave a comment

Three weeks ago when we had the wild wind storm (pictures below), I had the scary pleasure of helping my husband with the watch care of the boat.  The winds had started on a Thursday morning and by evening were gale strength.  We had Bible study up at our Pastor’s home and so Rick, Annie and I headed out leaving Melody in charge of the house.  We stopped by the boat and Rick watched and accessed the way the wind was blowing and went and through another line on the boat.  We headed to Bible study and into the second hour the lights started to blink.  I called Melody to see if we still had electricity and we did.  The strange thing about northern Door electricity is that within the three miles that we were from home there were at least 5-6 circuits, so from neighbor to neighbor there is no pattern for who will be out of electricity or who will have it!  If the lights went out at Pastor’s it might not mean that our would be out at all.  I mentioned to Rick that I did not want Melody to be alone if the power did go out so he decided that he would go home  while Annie and I stayed another 30 minutes before Pastor said we needed to just pray and get everyone home as the winds were picking up and roaring.  We got home and within a few minutes our power went out. 

I found the flashlights, of which only one worked well and the rest were weak lights at best.  If only I had stocked up on batteries like I normally do when I am at Fleet Farm!  We lit candles and grabbed blankets, making the living room our sleeping area for the night.  Rick and I went down and did another check on the boat, she was still there and rocking.  We dozed off after returning from that check, the girls on couches and Rick in his chair and I unfortunately in a somewhat comfortable, but not really J  chair covered in blankets for warmth.   Around midnight we went again to check the boat and this time Rick tied a line from a post across the harbor so that the boat was also being pulled away from the dock and hopefully suspended there so that the damage of being thrown against the dock would be minimal.   Again we went to sleep and awoke at three to go and check the boat again.  Actually I woke as Rick woke but he wanted me to stay and due to my being so groggy I agreed and he headed out.  I only half slept as the concern for my husband over-powered my desire for sleep and sure enough within moments he was back and I knew he needed me.   I threw on his work jacket and headed out, trying to clear my head to think clearly as I knew Rick would be shouting orders to me and needed me to respond quickly and correctly. 

We got down to the dock and two of the lines were broke so the Freitag was bouncing hard.  A huge tire that is attached to the dock to protect the boats was missing so I could hear the sickening sound of metal of our boat scraping against the dock. 

I went out on the dock praying each step of the way that I would not fall as I knew the boards were loose in places and some were broken.  I reached the boat and leaned over grabbing the rail to brace myself against the dock to keep the 42 foot steel boat from hitting the dock while at the same time bracing myself to not be pulled off the dock as the in the ebb of the wave the boat would pull away and might well have taken me with it! 

God is really good, He really does equip us to be helpmates for our husbands and to use His strength and wisdom which He gives freely when we call on Him, and I was calling on Him!  You see I have an issue with vertigo which is set off by darkness or small movements and I was in the middle of those two things out on the dock.  There is a light on the dock but it did not shine onto the dock and the wooden dock, peer, which I was standing on was shifting slightly with each wave.  It was wild, but I trust a God who does wild things and as I prayed I was calmed and able to do each thing that Rick needed me to do.  Well, except one.  I moved over onto the cement dock where he was going to throw me a line from the boat which I was to catch to pull the boat away from the dock  to secure it again to a post.  Rick threw the rope my way but the wind caught it and it fell not to far from the boat so her reeled it in to try once again.  Our docks have no railing around them to hang on to and I was far from a post to steady myself so I knew I could not lean over the water to grab the rope and although I hated the helpless feeling of not being able to reach the rope as Rick tossed it toward me again I knew that safety was more important.  This time the rope came within 6-8 feet of where I was before the wind again blew it down into the water.  Rick quickly came and improvised a tool from rope and a box hook which he tossed out to retrieve the rope before the waves took the rope to far away from us.  He caught it and grabbed it out while I messed with lines and moves things away from entangling his feet as he worked the rope around the post, pulling it tighter with each slack in the line as the waves rolled.  The wind blew through my jacket and my hair whipped around my face as I stood waiting for the next order to move the truck for more light from the headlights or to grab the flashlight and hold it for him. 

Rick soon had things under control and I headed to the truck to get out of the wind and try and get warm.  Rick re-checked lines and then came to the truck.  Upon shutting the door I looked at him and said “maybe it is time for you to get a desk job!”   Rick gave me half of a smile and then responded with “I don’t think that would suit me very well.”   As we drove toward the house with the winds swaying the truck I knew that he was correct, that would be a little too tame for this fisherman of mine.

Fall Family Pictures   2 comments

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Posted October 19, 2011 by joyfulhouse in Uncategorized

Winds over Door County   Leave a comment

A few weeks ago, Door County was hit with  the fiercest wind storm in many many years.  The damage was extensive and some folks were without electricity for seven days.  We were fortunate to get electricity back within the day and then were able to bless another family with food and showers as they needed.

I have to admit that I do like it when it blows now and then as wind is one of the parts of nature that man cannot control.  As a fishing family we know that well.  We can pray and pray and sometimes God stills the winds and sometimes He knows better the plan for the day and the winds continue.  That is when I rest in the Sovereign God of the universe who is the one who is in charge, and knows best!

The damage has kept us busy with clean up and we won’t be done with that until into November.  Our days are filled with the end of the fishing season and it has been the windiest October in years.  Today it is supposed to start to blow again, and powerful winds that could really knock out our trap nets and end fishing for the season earlier than the closing day which has been extended to Oct. 30th.  We are praying that God will change the winds, we will see what God does!

John 3:8

The wind blows where it wishes and you hear the sound if it, but cannot tell where it comes from and where it goes.

Choosing joy


Posted October 19, 2011 by joyfulhouse in Commercial Fishing Life, Door County Life