The Culprits

Thursday, June 5, 2014

2014


This has been a busy and momentous year for our family thus far. Justin and I celebrated our 20th wedding anniversary on the 3rd of this month. We were able, thanks to some wonderful sisters-in-law, to get away for the night. I am so incredibly thankful that I am still married to my best friend, and my lover. We can hardly believe it has been 20 years already. Sometimes, we still act like a couple of teenagers in love. Just ask our kids, who are grossed out by our affection for each other on a daily basis. This is not to say we get along perfectly, or that things have always been easy. But we still like each other a lot, and for that we are thankful! 

THEN: On our wedding day.

NOW: On our 20 year anniversary.


Senior Picture 2014

 The next day, our oldest son, Seth (who will turn 18 in August), graduated from the Idaho Virtual Academy, surrounded by many supportive friends and family. His father and I are incredibly proud of the godly young man he has become. He has a passion for youth ministry, and will be attending Boise Bible College this fall. 
The high school graduate and his very proud father.

Jarod, who turned 14 in April, just completed middle school and promotes to high school level in the fall. Micah turned 12 in May, and will be promoting to the 7th grade. Gideon turned 9 in January and is going into the 4th grade. Titus will turn 8 in August, and will be going into the 3rd grade. Isaac, who just turned 5 years old in February, has already been doing Kindergarten level activities, as he enjoys being a "big boy" and doing school time with his brothers. He will continue with this in the fall. We are still homeschooling. The older boys school through the Idaho Virtual Academy, and the younger boys work with miscellaneous curriculum.
Here are Jarod & Micah, after they gave their science presentations at May's IDVA school fair. We were delighted to see Mrs.Baillie, who was their former on-line elementary school teacher. She was always a big help to me and was with us for many years. Both boys were awarded blue ribbons.


OTHER HAPPENINGS:

Just before our anniversary date, Justin ventured out into the mountains with the 5 youngest boys for an over night back-packing trip. Seth was off with friends for the night. I was completely alone in our house overnight....for the very first time in almost 18 years. It was a little difficult for me emotionally, but also very good for me. God drew my heart to rest in Him. The boys & Justin all arrived home the next day, healthy, dirty, and happy. 
We recently had to say goodbye to our sweet old lady dog, Scout. She was very sick, and it was her time. She was survived by some very sad Sturgeon Aunties, Grandma, 6 very heart-broken boys, 1 sad mommy who tried to fix her, but couldn't, 1 sad yellow lab, and 2 ambivalent cats. I told Justin that we really needed some sack-cloth and ashes, because there was weeping and wailing in this house, all day long. That was a sad day. We will always remember what a faithful, slightly neurotic, sweet old girl our little Scout was. 

In late April, my mother, Deanna, developed pneumonia, along with some other infections. She was critically ill, so I took the 3 younger boys (and left the 3 oldest with my husband), and drove immediately up to WA to be with her. Cousin Regina & her husband Chris graciously let me stay with them for the week. They only live 5 minutes away from the hospital, so I was able to spend all of my time with Mom. Through the prayers of many, and good medical care, she pulled through & is doing much better now. We are are so thankful to God that she is still with us. My younger boys were such good sports, and behaved so well in the hospital for hours and hours on end. Cousins Regina & Emily were life-savers, and watched the boys some of the time. My older boys were angels, and got so much school work done while I was away. I didn't get to see many family members, especially on Justin's side of the family, since I was not there for a vacation.  Fortunately, my own father, sisters, brothers, nieces, & nephews were around the hospital frequently, so I was able to see some family. Even though it was a bit of a frightening time, it was also a good bonding time for my family. 

On February 14, we traveled to Las Vegas to attend my sister Gloria's wedding. I was her maid of honor, just as she was in my wedding! She also asked me to sing during the ceremony. Afterwards, I realized that I have been privileged to sing in all 3 of my sisters' weddings! Gloria was a gorgeous bride. She married Elmer, a very kind and fun man. Many Haukaas family members could not be there, but I was delighted to see some of my cousins, aunts and uncles there. I am so happy my sister has found love and companionship. The boys LOVE their new "Uncle Elmo". Welcome to the family, Elmo!!! We love you! 


What we're up to: 

Justin and I are currently having semi-regular Bible Study in our house (co-leading with another couple) on Tuesday nights, and are volunteering in the high school youth group on Monday nights. Justin is mentoring a couple of young men in the youth group, and I have found myself very attached to the girls in my care group. I am no longer playing keyboard or singing with the "SweetTarts". I am now playing worship (& occasionally singing) in the Celebrate Recovery Band at our church on Friday nights, which is a blast. I am also co-leader in the Life-Support group (dealing with relationships, and other emotional issues), and will be starting to co-lead a 12-step class in a couple weeks on Sunday nights. Justin is on the hunt for a new job, and excited to see where God will lead him. We both are growing closer and closer to Jesus, and can't wait to see what he has in store for our lives. 

I'm somewhat sorry to admit that, even with all these boys, we really are not involved in sports. The boys are not on any teams, and we do not really watch sports very often. I realize that is completely un-American, but that just hasn't been a priority, which is OK because we can't afford it for 6 boys anyway. However, we do TONS of camping every Summer. There is daily tree-climbing, scooter-riding, tree-swinging, and other such adventures in the back yard. I don't think our boys are too ruined. ;) They have also all discovered a deep love of reading. Seth enjoys history pod-casts, and audio books. Jarod and Micah have recently discovered the genre of fantasy, and all things dragon-related. Gideon is enjoying The Hardy Boys. They all love music. Seth is a classic rock buff, and plays a mighty mean bass guitar, as well as acoustic guitar, and electric. Jarod and Micah both can play a few songs on ukulele, as well as guitar. Gideon has a drum set and loves to practice when he remembers to do so. Isaac and Titus do a great job shaking their shakers....sort of to the right beat. ;) 



I think I have covered all of the most important happenings of the year thus far. Below are a few more miscellaneous pictures that encapsulate our happy, blessed and full life. God bless, and hope to hear from you, our dear friends and family, very soon.  


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Thursday, November 28, 2013

Praying for Turkey


 
Such a civilized bunch are we....


....as well as graceful.
This is how we speed up turkey digestion to make room for pie. 


Abi & Gideon decided to write stories after dinner....

....while the others watched 'The Hobbit'. 
Got my girl-time in tonight with my sweet & silly nieces. They took turns being the photographer.

Justin has been faithfully leading our family in nightly bed time prayers, and each night we usually pray for a different country. We ended up praying for Turkey three nights in a row this week. We're following a prayer plan that we get via email. I don't know if the prayer-plan-writers thought praying for Turkey would be funny during Thanksgiving week or what, but those three nights our conversation with Isaac (our youngest, who is 4 yrs old) went something like this:

Isaac: "Daddy, what country are we praying for tonight?"

Justin: "We're praying for Turkey tonight."

Isaac: "Turkey??? We're praying for Turkey???"

Justin: "Yes, we're playing for Turkey."

Isaac: "Hee-hee-hee!!!! We're praying for Turkey!!! Hee-hee-hee!!! (Literally says, "hee-hee" when he giggles.) 

Three nights in a row. Same conversation. 

But the third night, after normal the "hee-hee-hee-we're-praying-for-Turkey"-s:

Isaac: "Daddy, why are we praying Turkey for?" (His way of asking what the country needs prayer about.)

Titus (our 7 yr old) piped up: "CRANBERRY SAUCE!!!" *Giggle-giggle-giggle*" (Didn't literally say, "giggle". He just giggled.)

 
Then last night, we finally prayed for a different country, which I'd never heard of before: Turkmenistan. Turkmenistan? Really? Of course, Isaac still thought it was funny, because Turkmenistan was just a really silly name for Turkey. He and Titus still got their "hee-hee-hees" & *giggle-giggle-giggles* in.  And apparently we all had Turkey on the brain, because Jarod forgot how to say, "Turkmenistan" when it was his turn to pray. Instead, quite reverently and sincerely, Jarod prayed for, "Turk-mania". Yes, he did. And so, four nights in a row, Mommy got in trouble for *chuckle-chuckle-chuckling* (didn't say, "chuckle-chuckle"; just couldn't stop shaking and choking slightly) during bedtime prayers. Tonight, I can't even remember the name of the country we prayed for. Sad, I know, because it was like five minutes ago. But I don't think it was Turkey-anything though, or I would probably remember. As I tucked the boys into bed tonight.....

Me: "Goodnight, boys. Happy Thanksgiving. I love you."

Titus: "Happy Thanksgiving, Mommy. I wish we had prayed for Turkey again tonight."

Me too, kid. Me too. But still, even though we didn't pray for Turk-o-Rama, or Turkey-Lurkey, I am SO thankful for SO many things. I'm thankful that we still have the freedom to worship as we wish, that we are not tortured for believing in Jesus. I am thankful that we have carpet on the floor of our cozy house, instead of a dirt floor (though there is usually plenty of dirt on the carpet--not the same, I know). I am thankful that we have clean, running water, instead of having to walk five miles every day to find a mud puddle to drink from. I am thankful my children can go to the doctor (and naturopath) when they are sick. I am thankful that my family gets three meals per day, instead of per week. I am thankful for a husband who is seeing needy, lost, and hurting people through Jesus' eyes, and who is teaching our sons to do the same. I'm thankful for God's patience with me. And I'm so. very. thankful. for Turkey. 

From our family to yours, Happy Thanksgiving!!!

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Stuff That Happened This Year



It's 'only' been 6 months since I updated our family blog. Thought it was time to stop neglecting it. Here are some highlights since Spring: 

For starters, Jarod turned 13, and had lots of friends over for a slumber party. I survived to tell about it, though the essence of socks, armpits, and "recycled" pizza lingered in my house for a few days there-after. 

   
This is Jarod. He is very cool now that he is 13.

This is Micah. He turned 11 this year.

So happy together. Mostly.


Justin & I had our 19th anniversary. Still in love. Looking forward to our 20th in a few months.



This is Micah's first day of Middle School Youth Group at church. He is now officially "cool" too, in case you were wondering.


Seth started being allowed to "group date" this year. He felt a little gypped when he realized that he had already been hanging out with "groups" of friends & that not much had changed. But, hey....he can CALL it "dating" now. That matters. He also turned 17 this year, and is now a senior in high school. He has plans to get his driver's license, and head off to Boise Bible College....all in the next few months. He has a passion for youth ministry, and for music. I am very proud of him, and know he will do awesome things with his life. The first birdie will be leaving the nest soon. No, I do not want to talk about it. 


Summer Camps & lots of family camp-outs happened this past Summer. I may back-track & do a camping blog post at some point. Because you can never have too many camping pictures.












My incredible, very sexy, hard-working man has been building me some awesome stuff this year, such as this amazing home-school computer table, and two sets of these awesome bunk beds for the boys' rooms. He is also remodeling the bathroom by the boys' rooms, because the floor had water damage & the change was long over-due. I may blog about that later as well.






I had the immense privilege, this past Spring, to go to Seattle to be with my little sister, while she had her 3rd baby, her first little girl. It was an exciting adventure which I embarked upon with all six boys. We had to leave Justin at home, as he could not take the time off of work. I had a blast with my boys, but I never want to do that without my husband again. Ever. I mean it. And that's all I have to say about that.



















The cousins all had a blast together.....mostly.

Welcome, Adelyn!!!! I was so blessed to be allowed
in the delivery room when she arrived. So special! 
So proud of my beautiful sister, Keri, who is such a good mama.

Had so much fun spending time with all my little nieces & nephews,
whom I rarely get to see. Miss them so much now.

This is my cousin, Regina. She is the angel who
watched my boys for hours on end so I could
spend time with my sister & brother-in-law
at the hospital.






While in Seattle, we got to visit Nanny & Papa, as well as Cousin Sorin. 


Fortunately, Nanny & Papa gave us lots of gifts to take home, one of which was this handsome puppet here. We decided that he was John the Baptist. John is a happy sort of fellow & he gave us much entertainment on the trip home. On the end of Seth's hand, John stared, smiled, danced & waved at strangers in the cars next to us, while the boys & I got to watch their various reactions. According to our observations, there are more happy drivers out there than not. Some pointed & laughed. Some waved back. Only a couple gave John & Seth grumpy looks. Seth found himself slinking down to the floor at one point, after pulling up next to a car of cute girls & being embarrassed by John's antics. Silly John.











This year we also welcomed Cousin Aaron Gabriel Alexander to the family. I may elaborate on this story in a coming blog post as well. Right now, I'm sticking to highlights.



 




Last, but definitely not least, Titus turned 7 years old. He is quite adept in utilizing "The Force", so watch out, world!


For those family members who might feel left out, fear not. For your information, and so that I won't forget, more bloggie-type-stuffs (from 2013) to come are as follows:
*Visit from My brother & sis-in-law.
*Visit from my parents.
*Things that God is doing in our family.
*More family birthdays.
*Camping pics from this past Summer.
*Bathroom transformation.
*Random, weird boy stuff.
*How my husband took Halloween away.
*How we get to have an extra long Christmas season so that my childhood is not lost.
*Too many things to remember, so let me know if I've forgotten something very important. And please forgive me if I never get around to any of these topics before my next post (or ever), which will most likely be in another 6 months from now, give or take.
                                         ~~~The End~~~