"We have never been called to define God, we have been called to behold Him." - Abraham Joshua Heschel

Moment in Time Photography - Blog

January 27, 2012

Provision and Blessing Abound

God has been providing constantly for our family. Sometimes, it is hard to see, sometimes it takes looking beyond myself to fully realize just how fortunate we have been, just how blessed we are.

It's about forgetting about me, about my wants, and learning to trust fully, rest completely and surrender every area to God's control.

We found out on Tuesday that Troy is now teaching an evening class at the college two nights a week. And, that he has one class at one of the high schools in town. As of now we are still waiting to hear about one LTO that he applied for, he didn't get one of them and we are pretty sure that he didn't get this one either.

But you know what? It simply means that God has something so much better for us. It might not be the *traditional* work of 9 to 5 (or similar) but it is going to be good.

I am so thankful for the way that God is working, for the way that He is blessing our lives and filling our days and providing for our family.
Anthony had a GREAT time in Toronto visiting my family and we have been thrilled to have my mom here since Tuesday. Sadly she leaves tomorrow morning, but I will be going down in just over a month (!)

Alexandra is learning to read by leaps and bounds She's my silly girl. Shes known how to read for close to six months, I've caught her reading to her dollies but she has refused to read to Troy or I. This past week she has been reading like crazy. We've gone to the library twice this week to pick out books for her So proud of her.

Owen is still Owen. He is growing and losing that little boy look. We sign him up for Kindergarten in two weeks...my baby. And yet, he's ready and I am ready. But it is hard, we are moving into a new season of life. A season that involves letting go and watching the grow and change and flourish as they come into the little people that God has created them to be.

I have been busy, learning how to cut even more out of our grocery budget (homemade buns are yummy with homemade burgers (venison/beer/beef!) and that is just one way of God providing for us), patching knees on pants like it is going out of style....why oh why do they all insist on wearing out at the same time?

Babysitting lots the past 16 days. Again, not something I expected to be doing again on a full-time basis, but it is only temporary and it is just another way that God has been blessing us. It's been SO much fun but I am so not used to having a 10 month old around anymore and I am tired by the end of the day. A good tired though because he is the sweetest, easiest little boy and my kids just love having him around! It is such a joy to watch my 3 interact with him

I was super excited last week to have a family photo shoot for a family that I had never met before. They were a wonderful family and I am very happy with how their pictures turned out. . . I have even said yes to photographing a wedding! Not something I ever planned on doing, but a good friend of Troy's asked (I took their newborn pictures) and I felt like I could do it. So at some point in June (still waiting to hear on the date) I will be a wedding photographer (!)

We were supposed to be able to see the Northern Lights the other night, but by the time we got far enough out of the city that the lights weren't too bright, there was too much cloud cover to see anything! But it was a nice drive out to country and a peaceful drive down the back roads to get home.

January 19, 2012


After a winter that has been fairly mild, this cold comes as a shock. And when I say cold, I really do mean c.o.l.d. As in freeze your nose hairs and teeth cold. As in, there is ice inside on the windows...even on top of the plastic that has been put up to help keep the heat in. Cold as in I have zero desire to bundle up to take the 25 steps across the street to see if there is mail in the mailbox.

But if it weren't this cold,
this morning I would not have seen the sparkling for ice crystals on the ground as the sun rose over the tops of the houses.
I wouldn't have been able to spend the morning with a wonderful friend while our kids played really, really nicely together.
I wouldn't have been nearly as thankful for the sunbeams that are streaming in my living-room windows right now, warming the room up and shining light through the house.

Tonight, Anthony heads to Toronto. On a plane, with a friend of mine who was generous enough to let him fly down with her. This is his first big solo trip. He's stayed with his gramma and aunt and uncle before, but they live here in town. He is super excited. I'm super excited because it means on Tuesday, my mom comes up here to visit! She is flying back with Anthony.

We have found out that Troy has one full-time period for February. Thank God! It means that we will have benefits again. It means he still needs an LTO for us to make ends meet, but the addition of benefits again is huge (it means I don't have to ration meds any more...but even in that God has been providing and carrying me through).

I have a family photo shoot Saturday and am really looking forward to it. I can't wait to meet the family and find out what make them *them*. For me, I think that is one of the best things about being a  photographer. It's finding out what makes a family *them* and then being able (or trying at least) to capture that through the lens of my camera in a way that others will see it too.

I have pictures.....lots of pictures, but my laptop died and Dell is sending me another one....it will be here Monday, but until then I have no editing program and no way to upload the pictures to the computer. But that's OK. Thankful it comes on Monday and thankful too that Dell was helpful and willing to accommodate me (it was a brand new laptop...I love super special surprise Christmas presents....that started giving me grief 3 weeks after I got it and it went downhill from there!) But the new one arrives on Monday and I am looking forward to it!!

January 13, 2012

Counting Grace, Finding Joy, Choosing Thanks

It is hard. So hard. 

But for me, it is worth it, pointing back to God when I sit and question and wonder when it will ever stop. 

Yup...trials, love them and hate them all at the same time.

So what will I do?

I will (ahem...try) to consider it ALL joy. Yup, all of it. 

Because in the midst of it God is teaching me to trust Him, and sometimes His love brings pain.

But you want to know something?
That's a good thing. 

It really is.

It means I stop and consider God's Character, Who He is and what He does. Not just in my life or the lives of people who I know, but through out history.
And guess what...."The Lord is full of compassion and is merciful" (James 5:11)

Did I happen to mention that I am involved in 2 (yes, 2!) Bible studies on the book of James?

What are the chances that God is trying to tell me something that is not making it's way past the stubborn, me-focused walls in my heart and mind?!?!

One of them is this:
James:Mercy Triumphs by Beth Moore

and the other is the Bible Study Troy and I go to Wednesday nights at our Pastor's house. Just looking, verse by verse, chapter by chapter at James and learning how to apply it to our lives and to live for Christ by showing mercy and living in community even in the midst of trials.

We are still waiting to hear if Troy will have full-time work come the start of second semester in February.

Waiting, waiting, waiting. Sometimes I don't wait all that patiently and I get discouraged and frustrated and lose sight of the fact that God knows.

He has this all under control and none of it (did you just read that?) NONE of it, is a surprise.

Not the joblessness.

Not my reactions to it.

Not Troy's reactions to it.

Not the effect it is having on our family.

NONE.OF.IT is a surprise to God and you know what? It's all good.
So at the start of a new year, I count blessings - those little glimpses of light and hope and joy - in the midst  of my day:

178. kids laughter

179. family board games

180. sleep

181. encouragement

182.anticipation of a visit

183. little boy *tiny hugs*

184. gentle kids kisses

185. a house becoming (slowly) organized

186. Kijiji

187. Etsy

188.stepping out in fear and faith

189. two (!) Bible studies on James
190. vanilla ice cream

191. gift cards

192. silly kids

193. snow-pants, hats, mitts, slush strewn in our enterance

194.beautiful sunrises

195. hand written letters

196. bear, deer and cow in the freezer

197. no meat on our grocery bill

198.waiting on God

199.struggling to grasp joy and have it placed in my lap
200.coffee with a friend

201.cuddles with sick kids

202.an evening to myself

203. Anthony truly happy

204. gift cards from a number of different people (some who know me well enough to know that Starbucks is the way to my hear *grin*!)

205. rain (in January, in Northern Ontario)

206. friends at a distance, connected through Facebook
207. time to clean my house

208. booking a 5 day trip just for me.

209. cheap airfare

210. new meals to make and try

211.kids playing kindly together

212. chance to play with my kids 1 on 1

213. work for Troy for a day...another day booked

214. warm, warm January weather (like windows open, heat turned off)

215. night-time pictures

216. McDonalds with a good friend and her kids

217. tears

218. waiting

219. purging of old toys

220. learning (again, continually) to die to self

221. home-made pretzels

222. a daughter who loves to cook.

223. Dell costumer service and a replacement labtop.

May God's grace find you this weekend. May His joy surround and bring laughter.

January 09, 2012

Little Chef

Alexandra got this cookbook and this cookbook for Christmas.

I think the pictures speak for themselves.....:)

January 01, 2012

Cure for the Grumpies

 Because it's been a rough few weeks. I have been so easily frustrated and just in an all round crummy mood. There are so many reasons for it.
 Some of which I can justify, some of it is simply me being lazy and allowing my human nature to win even when I so desperately don't want it too.
Some of it is the meds and the fact that I think they need adjusting again (but when the dr. who is doing mat leave for my family dr. asks me why I'm there, I tell her and she looks at me and the 3 kids I have in tow and says "How do you have time to be depressed?" I really have no desire to go back until my family dr is back!)
 But this day, overcast but warmish with a touch of wind. Filled with lots and lots of snow and ice. This day was needed.

God's grace in the moment. In the middle of the frustration and apathy, He showed up and showed me Himself.
 Reminded me of the mercy of Jesus and the grace that flows from His love always, daily, for the moment.
 Sometimes, for me, it takes getting out in the middle of nowhere (or in this case a lake on the side of the highway to Upsala) for me to find God again. To be reminded of Who He is and who I am without Him and to find the joy of who I am with Him.
 The kids had a blast. Well, Xanj and Owen had a blast (but it WAS Xanj's idea to go...she is totally into the whole outdoor adventure stuff), Anthony wasn't feeling 100% and spent most of the afternoon sitting in the van reading his TinTin book (and wishing he could be home playing a Star Wars III!)

 We were gone all day. Left the house before 8am and didn't get home until after 5.
 And I was content.happy.joy-filled.
 Because God is all I need. In the midst of the uncertainty of jobs or the tension that sometimes builds under the stress of that uncertainty or the rollarcoaster of emotions that seem to over-take me some days,
 God is all I need and that was the reminder I got loud and clear as the kids were fishing (or pretending to be polar bears and roaming around the lake!).

 The smiles on their faces and the beauty of creation around me.

I love that God knows what will touch my heart, what I need, when I need Him to reach down and touch the places of ice within my heart.

 This post is every where and I am not even sure if it is coherent...

 I am thankful for people who surprise me with generosity and gifts. For people who are real and honest.