Category Archives: mylin

Shattered (into) Pieces

For 6+ months, the 4 year old has been in charge of unloading the dishwasher each day. We started slowly with the silverware.  Then added stacking all the plates and cups onto the counter and now have progressed to then getting onto the counter to put them away in the cupboard ONE AT A TIME.

See, as a veteran dishwasher unloader, I have learned the the safest and best tactics for unloading, stacking, and putting away the fragile dishes.  As a mama, I am imparting this wisdom onto our kids, as per my job description (see Deuteronomy 6:5-9).

However, as a fellow sinner, the 4 year old took it upon herself to do it her own way today, which she honestly believed was ok.  Not just ok but safe.  Not just safe but BEST. Taking a handful of bowls and placing them on the 2nd shelf of the cupboard…and you all know what came next.  The crash.

As I enter the scene, looking something similar to this,



You’d think I would be meditating on the verse that Lydia just text me, “Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth” – 1 John 3:18

But no, I was grieving my beautiful green bowls that lay in pieces all over the counter on top of the other clean dishes and all over the ground where my 1 year old was headed as he crawled.  I yelled.  I banned the children from the kitchen. I mourned, silenty. I cleaned and swept and threw away the bowls.  I put away dishes and swept again and double checked so no tiny toe would be cut by a minuscule shard of what once was a pretty green bowl.   I boiled a little.  And I realized that I handled that situation really poorly.

And God brought to mind His spin on this whole situation.  Isn’t it just like us to make such a mess of ourselves, our situations, and our lives when we, in a brief moment of proud confidence and selfish ambition, try to do it our own way?  The way we think is ok? And safe? And BEST?  And look at how quickly we can make it all a mess. A mess that we are incapable of cleaning up ourselves.  A mess that God so lovingly uses for us, in spite of us and out of love for us.

God does this



out of our mess.  Out of our shattered pieces His light most certainly will shine through.

 Each time he said, “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me. 10 That’s why I take pleasure in my weaknesses, and in the insults, hardships, persecutions, and troubles that I suffer for Christ. For when I am weak, then I am strong.

– 2 Corinthians 12:9-11


Ms Virginia

Our sweet Virginia left this earth earlier this week

Breaking the news to Mylin was surprisingly heartbreaking as she burst into tears on daddy’s lap.  A parent can never be fully prepared for the honest emotions and faith of a child.

We are so thankful to have enjoyed the gift of her friendship for 2 years.  Her presence in our lives provided many opportunities to teach our children about service, respect, love, humility, and lastly, the importance of eternal life

She was a part of our family…

Virginia 001(Baby Sullivan)

winter 2012 011(Little Miss Mylin)037 (Sullivan’s first birthday party)038036

February and airplane 005 (Meeting baby Olson)February and airplane 004

And she will be greatly missed…

The grown-up 4 year old

Today, the lovely Mylin Hadassah celebrates being 4 years old

This one, I cannot believe.  4 is so old.  I truly miss the days of it being just me and her around the house – just the girls.  I didn’t realize how precious of a gift that time was!

We chose the meaning behind her name, Mylin (a family name), to mean ‘Heart’s desire.’  To think back to her birth story and our lives transforming from a couple into a family brings a lump in my throat and also a smile to my face.  I LOVE LOVE LOVE those first few hazey, drunk-with-love days of having a brand new baby.  If for no other reason, I will keep having more out of the sheer addiction to how sweet it is to have those who are so fresh from God, so near to us.  Mylin ushered that entire love into our lives.

Olson's firth month 002 February and airplane 007 February and airplane 008 February and airplane 052 February and airplane 068 Snow and March 021 Momiversary 019 IMG_20140526_170341608 IMG_20140609_124635095 strawberries with grandma IMG_20140615_153331228 IMG_20140619_094529609 IMG_20140620_084718855 IMG_20140624_165613076(these pictures are just of the last 5 months…look how much she has grown up!)

Mylin, God chose you to be the big sister for very specific reasons.  He knew you would be the best at it!  We are so thankful for your mature manner of handling responsibility,  your growing humility, and your love for all things ‘BABY’ – especially your 2 brothers!  You keep us on our toes and make us hit the ground running many days – but we would never want to experience a day without you.  We are so grateful and honored to be your parents.  What a privilege and opportunity 🙂  We love you!

Celebrating Motherhood

My two favorite girls in the whole world:

Momiversary 008

And the ones that made me a mom:


Happy Mother’s Day to everyone who is and has a mama – thanks, God, for this precious relationship!

100 Happy Days

Joel and I are officially grown-up. Or officially cool. Or just officially not cave-men with flip phones any more. Anyway you slice it, we have ARRIVED.

moto g picture

As any of you with smartphones know, this is a blessing and a curse.  It’s so fun to have ‘everything’ literally at our fingertips, yet we struggle to actually focus on what is important (also literally at our fingertips – because they just never go away)


Anyways, with all this new technology comes many opportunities to connect with friends – insert INSTAGRAM OBSESSION (follow us @joelandrachel)

Today, I am beginning a 100 day challenge to document and reflect on Being Happy (100 Happy Days).  Thanks to my friend over at Bee in a Barn for asking me to do it with her!  Basically, each day I’ll instagram (is that a verb, like ‘googled’?!) a picture with a quick description of what makes me happy/thankful….

Bigger picture: God is SO GOOD all the time!!! Whether it makes us ‘happy’ or not, He gets the glory for all of creation and everything that comes from it…I’m so excited to see how He’ll use this 100 day challenge to work on my heart!

Want to join in?!  Go to this website, sign up, and join in!



Reason #87…

…why I am so grateful to be called to stay-at-home with our babies

So I don’t miss moments like this: stinker picture taker! 061

Olson and his girls

Every afternoon Mylin and I get to have some alonetime with Olson after Sully is down for his nap and before the 3 of us lay down for ours.  We get to do fun things like ‘read’ to him (Mylin’s job while I do some computer work), give him eye contact or make faces while looking at him in the mirror, and give him some tummy time and time to kick around.  Also, some days we just play around and take pictures of each other:

stinker picture taker! 001 stinker picture taker! 002 stinker picture taker! 003 stinker picture taker! 004 stinker picture taker! 005