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And then my boy got married……   Leave a comment

We had another family wedding recently, the third time for this family, and it was wonderful.
My sweet son, the child who made me a mother and taught me of the fierceness of love that my young (20) heart and mind could hardly comprehend and understand. I always look back at my first mothering with him in wonder that the God of the universe entrusted me with this precious life as I was young, but God gives best and so He gave us Matthew.

As a side note, my fishermen and I married when I was 19 (he was 23) after being told that I would probably never get pregnant and that we would be lucky if I ever did….. but God! We married May 23, 1981 after knowing each other for 10 months. On July 5, 1981 I took a pregnancy test and much to our surprise and great delight, we found out we were pregnant. Matthew David was born the following March.

Matthew was the happiest child, always smiling, creative, fun, musical, deep thinking and hard working. Matthew’s favorite time was when the whole family would be involved in something whether fun or work related, but doing it together. He always wanted a brother, but God gave him sisters and he has managed well as and older brother them!

A few years ago he brought home to visit a sweet young lady named Emily. Emily was familiar to our family because Mandy and Emily met in college and became good friends. I kid you not, on the day of their graduation, as I was taking a picture of Mandy and her friends, God spoke to my heart that this Emily would be Matthew’s girl! I instantly felt a great love for her. So, when he brought her north to visit quite a few years later it was the completion of that moment from their graduation. We loved Emily from the start!

It took our son some time to make a commitment to marrying Emily due to some health issues and his desire to make sure she was the one. And she was! So we gathered in Green Bay for their April wedding and rejoiced in God’s goodness and faithfulness to our family. The wedding was beautiful and meaningful with God’s Word being read and the precious vows of marriage being spoken. The reception was full of joy and great dancing! Emily and her family and friends have long practiced ball-room dancing and they were fun to watch! I told my fisherman that if we start practicing now, we may look that good by the time we have another family wedding!

We rejoice in all the good that the Lord has done and is doing in our family!   We are delighted to have Emily as our daughter and believe that she is exactly God’s best blessing as a wife for our son.

So blessed,




Posted June 5, 2017 by joyfulhouse in Uncategorized

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Conversations with my 5 yr. old.

Sunday afternoon, and we are just relaxing and hanging out together.   I was making shapes for her to cut out as she now feels she has mastered the art of cutting and would like to use MY scissors —  good luck with that!   In the middle of cutting at the school table, 4 feet from me, she comes over to me real fast with that look of expectancy……  then she announces –

“Mommy, did you know that a few weeks ago, I can’t remember when, but Annie told me that now that I am 5, I can start to drink soda? Or, maybe it was Mountain Dew!”

Yes indeed, because Mountain Dew is on another level of soda in our home.  If the girls want an A&W Root Beer it is all good, but when they want a Mountain Dew I know they are wanting the buzz of caffeine and the late night that comes with it, and the talk will accelerate and the laughter will ensue!  Mountain Dew brings fun to the mix, every time!

Me- “Did she really say that?”  It just didn’t seem like something Annie would say–

EJ – “Yes mommy, she really, really did and I am not joking”

Me- “So, do you want a sip of soda? It is Sunday and the day we are most likely going to have that treat.”

EJ – “No, but I am thinking about it, now that I am 5!”


Posted April 23, 2017 by joyfulhouse in Uncategorized

Coming Back —   Leave a comment





For the last few months God has impressed upon me that it is time to blog again, to go back to recording our family history to share with our extended family, but also for the sake of putting into words the thoughts surrounding our life here on this earth.  Thoughts that have no pictures attached, just the convictions and encouragements that are place in my heart from God above.  He is so good, He is so gracious.

This time and season of needing to be still and focus on trusting God in ways that life demanded, so different than anything I have experienced in life so far, is lifting.  God has healed and restored and done beautiful things in my life.  As so often the case, a mother’s pain is the effect of another’s action, be it family or other close relationships,  and often is not her story to share but to be a burden bearer, a prayer warrior and the servant of Jesus as she walks with those she loves.   And in other times, pain is caused by a mother’s own mistakes, and I have made plenty, and I will continue to share that, freely,  so that my daughters and anyone else that reads this blog may learn.

     Psalm 98

He has made known His salvation

He has revealed His righteousness

He has remembered His steadfast love and faithfulness

All the ends of the earth have seen the salvation of our God!

Posted April 2, 2017 by joyfulhouse in Uncategorized

Joy Today!   Leave a comment



Parenting is always an exciting adventure–

Some days it is more so than not, and I do mean that in the most positive way!

Today was one of those days–

A certain one of our daughters who has been loving on a friend for the last 6 months, helping her, encouraging her,

supporting her and praying for her.

Today this daughter who does not really care to see others in pain or talk about personal things, who does not like the sight of blood and would rather not be in a hospital if it can be avoided….

Today this daughter went to a 6 hour long birthing class.  To help this friend, to extend herself beyond her comfort zone to bless one who is very alone, who has some hard times coming down the road and will need a hand to help her over the bumps and to stay on the road safely.

All in the name of Jesus and for the sake of the Gospel —

This was an exciting day in parenting — And I am blessed to see a daughter sacrifice some of her life for the love of another —

p.s. — She texted me from the class saying that a woman was going on about how she birthed THREE children all naturally…….. and then Annie added, “Don’t worry. I am not impressed!”   HA HA — she was thinking of me, having birthed six children, two at home —  but she forgot that when I tell about my birth stories I always say that just when it was time to push our babies out I was ALWAYS asking my husband if I should take some drugs!  I guess you could say I was just one step away each time from un-natural births!  🙂  It’s all good!

Posted September 7, 2014 by joyfulhouse in Uncategorized

Fifteen!   Leave a comment

DSC00654 DSC00639 DSC00568This is our beautiful 15 year old.

How time flies when you are having fun and she has been a fun and wonderful daughter.

This has been a great year for Melody as she has excelled in school, her friendships, helping with foster children, working for our rental business, her violin and most importantly her walk with God.

We love her laugh and her humor, her way of thinking and often taking things to a deeper level in school and other daily discussions.  She is a young lady and growing in all of her beauty and we are delighted that God gave her to us!

Posted April 27, 2013 by joyfulhouse in Around the house, Family, Uncategorized

The closing of 2012   Leave a comment

I can’t believe that it has been so long since I last posted.  Time does fly, whether you are having fun or not!  🙂  So much has happened and I will try to sum it up in this post. First off — God answered prayers in bringing in fish at the end of the season in Oct..  We are very grateful as the last year had been concerning.  It was wonderful to play catch-up on the bill pile and purchase much needed items for our home and business.  God is always faithful in His own timing and it is good to trust Him more and more.


Rick and I on lake superior after hike2012-11-09_13-34-54_5152012-11-09_16-33-16_133 

In November, after the season had settled down, Rick and I took the opportunity to get away for a few days and go to Lake Superior.  There is a fishery located there that Rick had not been to in years and since his friend John was working there for the fall season it was the perfect time to go visit.  As we drove into the northwoods my heart was delighted to see the rolling hills and tall pine trees of northern Wisconsin.  I was raised in these north woods on the western part of the state and I just love the look of those stately trees.  We stayed in a little town known for the fishing and had so much fun looking at old fish-boats and appreciating this industry that God has us being a part of for our living.   We stayed at a little condo on Lake Superior and it was just perfect.  I mostly loved just being with my husband, relaxing and enjoying hiking and being together.

We ate a couple meals at a local, and very busy restaurant that was unique in every way.  The food was excellent and I adored the ambiance, especially the colored lights draping all over the ceiling from one end to another.  My husband has a “thing” about lights and loves to shut them off while I, on the other hand, love to turn them on — especially pretty lights.  I thought Rick might have a hard time relaxing with all these lights shining all  over the ceiling (and all that electricity being wasted!) but he kept his eye on me and he managed to enjoy the meals without needing to go and unplug a string of lights here or there.  🙂





 A few days after Thanksgiving we received a call that every Foster Care family knows is a possibility.  This one was for us to get to the court house and take over the care of a precious little 10 month old.  Her name is Sunshine and she has rocked our world ( mostly our nights!) and delighted our days.  She came very sick and due to spending lots of time loving on her, I picked up all of her germs which laid me out for the last month  😦   She eventually got better and has since blossomed with lots of physical and emotional growth.  She has gained three pounds, cut four teeth, learned to walk, says a few words and has started the process of learning to attach, which is very important for her over-all well being in the future.  We, on the other hand, have learned to deal with toys all over the living room and the rearrangement of furniture to keep her blocked into certain areas to play, baby food and bottles on the counter in the kitchen, learning to keep on top of buying diapers and formula, keeping an eye at all times on this little life.  We have fallen in love with this little bundle and are again reminded how precious and vulnerable these little ones are.  We have prayed over her daily and rejoice in every good choice her parents make on this journey to reunification.



Christmas brought ALL of our children home, Kristi from Liberty, Matthew and his girlfriend Emily, Jeni and Jason from Oak Creek and Mandy from Appleton.  It was so wonderful to have them around the table and sleeping in every available bed space.  Precious to my mother’s heart and my husband’s as well.








 We also had our annual New Years Eve party which was so much fun and our pyromaniacs did a great job with the fireworks~ I will add more post soon pertaining to home-schooling and other aspects of our life-Blessed — over and over again  



Posted February 3, 2013 by joyfulhouse in Uncategorized

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This was our life last weekend.  We had our little friend M here to visit, or Little Putts as my husband calls him.  Big Putts would be M’s uncle, who Rick is good friend’s with.  Our house was strewn with legos and toy cars and uno cards and it was wonderful.  We roasted marshmallows, and went apple picking on Saturday.  It is always a little bit of a jolt to go back to having a younger child for the weekend but we are getting used to it and so it he!   Lots of fun on this road of willingness.  🙂

Blessed to be trusted with another one’s child,


Posted October 26, 2012 by joyfulhouse in Uncategorized