On Grief

Most of us have either lost a loved one through death or sat with a friend who has done so. Perhaps we have heard of the stages often associated with grieving, which may include bargaining, denial, anger, depression and eventually, acceptance. Maybe we have gone through these stages ourselves or watched our friend go through them.

In every case, grief is about losing someone or something that mattered to us. When it is a person, others around us understand and empathize and it is often a fairly public event in our lives. Funerals and memorials are deeply meaningful rituals that offer us the opportunity to express our love and pay tribute to those we’ve lost.

However, other losses are less public or obvious. Couples who assume they will have a family grieve when they learn they are infertile. Singles who planned to get married someday find that no one has come along. People who have trained for careers and found success elusive lose promotions, or even jobs. Dreams come crashing down around us when disappointed expectations, illness, injury, abandonment, conflict, natural disasters or financial hardships come into our lives. These are important losses as well.

Recently my husband's candidacy for the ministry expired. We have been grieving this. No longer will he have the opportunity to serve a congregation, and the truth of this is spirit-crushing. Hope was always there for the past two years post-graduation, but the dream never came to fruition. There are times throughout the day (or night) when the pain strikes again and it becomes hard to control the emotions. Another loss we have to contend with is seeing friends move on with their callings. We have to say goodbye to more than just our own aspirations.

Sometimes those who are grieving are sent a subtle message that they should just “count your blessings” or “rejoice in the Lord always” when these things happen. Christians in particular may feel they are not allowed to really experience and grieve this kind of loss. But we need a Biblical perspective on loss. Scripture demonstrates and encourages honest and open expression of sadness; consider especially the Psalms, where pain is lamented and feelings are aired freely. (Psalm 38; Job) Honest questions are asked of God. “Where are you, God?” (Psalm 79) “Does this really need to happen?” (Matthew 26:36-39) “Is there no alternative?” The final word is that God remains faithful. (Habakkuk 3:17-19) We are invited to rejoice, not in our pain, but in the continuing presence of God at work in us. This is a matter of trust and faith.

We need to acknowledge losses in our own lives; we need to validate losses in the lives of others. We need to recognize them, grieve them, and then put them into perspective. God remains faithful. He is there to sustain us even in our darkest hours. We would never be able to shoulder the entire weight of our grief by ourselves.

Praise be to the Lord, to God our Saviour,
who daily bears our burdens! (Psalm 68:19)


Callum Says

The world through the eyes of a toddler.

I went into his room to get him up from a nap, and he sits up and, eyes closed, drowsily whimpers:
“My eyes are stuck shut. I can’t see everything, and you.”

We went for a walk to the pond:

C-note:“Look, it’s all sparkly. What’s that are those?” Me: “That’s the sun reflecting onto the water.” C-note: “Oh, the pond is a mirror for the sun!”

We went outside one day and one of the freight trucks was, well...just a trailer:

“The truck doesn’t have a face! Where did it go?”

At lunchtime, eating a sandwich:

“I don’t like the crunch.” Me: “Why not? That’s the best part.” Him: “Oh! Can I eat the crunch? Yum, yum.”

Driving in the truck, someone pulls right in front of me:

Me: "Aaaaargh!" C-note: "What's wrong, Mommy?" Me: "Oh, someone cut me off, and it made me angry." Him: "Oh, that truck cut Mommy off? He's a bad guy."

On vocations:
"When I get bigger and bigger and bigger I have my own tractor and go in the field and cut the grass!"

On bodycare:
"Can I have some of this handcream?" Me: "Why, are your hands dry?" Him: "Yeah, my hands have to be wet."

After Stu said "Guess what?" I responded with "What?" C-note says:

“Don’t say what, Mommy, say pardon.”


Six Years Ago Saturday

...we were wed! This post was a long time coming because of a sick toddler. Six years ago there was no toddler. I was holding other people's babies...
...although we did have a baby cat...We travelled the world!Okay, it was just England, not the world. Still, it was a great adventure! Look, we both had more hair then, too! ;)
We may not ever get uninterrupted sleep again...
...ample time for reading,or money to travel to foriegn lands...but that's not important.
Our journey so far has been exhilirating, challenging, joyful, painful, full of tears and laughter. I am so blessed to have you in my life, and I thank God every day that he led me to you, a compassionate, gentle man, full of the Spirit. Your strong faith has given mine new life, for I never really knew God like I know him now, and that's because of you!
You are a wonderful father to our children, and through your patient and gracious nature I know they will be encouraged to serve the Lord, have confidence in their abilities and discover their talents.
My dear, wonderful husband, my confidant and friend, I love you so much, and I thank you for loving me. I can't wait to see where God leads us next...


Eighteen Weeks

A-team is eighteen weeks! I forgot to record the first rollover, which was the day we had that crazy earthquake here in southern Ontario. I guess that makes it easy to remember. He rolls from tummy to back, but not the other way yet. We brought out the excersaucer and he really enjoys that. He's getting pretty good at grabbing things, and loves to chew. Most often you'll see him with a finger hooked in his jaw. Lots of drooling, but no teeth yet.

Bug in Mouth

Early this morning, (like 1:30 early), I had to attend to some wailing, and, after solving the problem grabbed my water glass from the counter for a swig. Being dark as it usually is at 1:30 in the morning, I didn't notice Mr. Ear Wig taking a dip in my glass and soon felt six tiny legs scrambling for a foothold on the tip of my tongue. Spewing everything back into the glass, I shuddered as I slammed it down and ran into the bathroom, immediately dousing my mouth with Listerine. I probably didn't need that, but it made me feel better. Sorry Mr. Wig, for subsequently terminating your life. You sure look weird with your head that bites and your butt that pinches. There's just too many of you invading my home lately. You eat my hostas during the night, but I don't mind that too much. I know you won't crawl into my ear and burrow into my brain like a childhood friend told me (that's why people gave you the name, although the tale is untrue.) You're not allowed in my house, though, and like all insects that find their way in, you are immediately Dealt With.



A-team turned four months this past week, but I will blog about that on Monday. Until then, enjoy this cute photo. ;)

Thanks, Boys!

for my late Mommy's Day present.



Recipe adapted from Aldergrove's Best Cuisine


2 cups flour (1 cup a.p., 1 cup w.w.)
1 1/2 tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 tbsp sugar
2 eggs
2 1/2 cups milk


Mix dry ingredients together. Add the eggs and milk; mix. Pour ladlefuls onto a hot oiled griddle and when fully-cooked, enjoy eating them!

*Tastes great with a little butter and syrup, or with berries and cream as pictured here.


Did you ever have one of those days where you've forgotten about supper, and then suddenly it's 4:30 and you're trying to figure out what to make? And you're so tired because the children didn't nap at the same time, so you didn't either? And you can't make a decision because you're so tired? And you start asking too many questions that begin with and?

Make pancakes!

Everyone loves pancakes, and they're quick and easy to make. This time I got a little creative and pureed some berries I had in the freezer (good way to get fruit into them) and whipped up some cream I still had from making a dessert a week or two before.

Click here for a good recipe.



This was a fun photoshoot, although she didn't like it too much when we sat her next to the garden statues.
What do you think she's thinking?


Happy Canada Day!

Happy Canada Day!
Over at Canadian Mom Blogger, author Nicole has created a Blog Party for Canadian Mommies! You can link up your blog on the party page and meet other moms in the Canadian Blogoshpere. They also have a draw for great prizes for participating! Come and visit the party and meet other Canadian moms.