Wait for it…

Living a simple sweet life, and learning to wait on the Lord

summertime part 1 August 6, 2010

Filed under: Family and Friends,Summer — Michelle @ 10:24 pm

We’re having a fabulous summer!!  Right after Ryan finished school we went to visit his family in St. Joseph, Michigan. 

We had a great time…


 Kilwin’s ice cream was definitely one of the highlights of our trip, mostly for Ryan (ok, ok, for me too…)  He’s holding up his fingers to show how many times we had been to Kilwin’s while we were in Michigan.  Just in case you were wondering, we went to Kilwin’s 9 out of the 10 days we were there.  But don’t worry.  We took a few walks.  And just in case you were wondering, Kilwin’s sells all sorts of other tasty treats, like orange, lemon, and limeade, fudge, chocolates, and caramel apples.  They’re all absolutely wonderful, just in case you were wondering.  We highly recommend Kilwin’s.


 Sunsets over Lake Michigan.  Breathtaking, serene, majestic, awe-inspiring…every time I saw one my heart leaped at the thought that such a beautiful God would allow silly little humans the chance to see just a tiny bit of His glory.


 Family.  So thankful for the time we were able to spend together!!  While we were there, we got to celebrate Ryan’s parents’ 40th anniversary, and had some family pictures taken on the beach.  We especially loved hanging out with our niece, Abigail.  She’s on the top  right of this collage.  Isn’t she a doll??  She was born 5 months before Avery, and when we were visiting last summer, she was still so tiny!  I love all the changes that take place in the first few years of life.  She has such a happy, spunky personality.  It was also super fun getting to see what Avery will be like in a few months.


Father’s Day!  My husband is such a wonderful Daddy to both of our kids…and I’ve especially loved watching him be such a super sweet Daddy to our little girl!!  She loves him so much already.


Sandcastle fun on the beach


Someday, I want my garden to look a little like this…


One Month with Avery October 17, 2009

Filed under: Family and Friends — Michelle @ 9:56 pm



Here’s how much Avery loved her first bath



Chatting with her big brother…he’s so sweet with her!



Relaxing…she loves having her hands up near her head



Some of Avery’s biggest fans…Baba and Deda (my grandparents)



Resting with Dad



Resting with Mom



Avery goes to the pumpkin patch!



Jackson Moses Dean and Avery Elaine  🙂



Our family of four!



Avery in her swing



Avery’s 3rd bath was a much calmer experience for everyone involved.



Today on her 1 month birthday, Avery got to go to her first tea! Some of the ladies in my family got together to celebrate and honor my grandmother, and we had a wonderful time. There are 4 generations represented in this picture.



Avery sleeping peacefully in her great-grandmother’s arms


Michigan! January 9, 2009

Filed under: Family and Friends — Michelle @ 11:16 pm

On Christmas night, we left California for snowy Michigan!  We had a wonderful and relaxing time with the Anthonys.  Thank you, Mom and Dad, for all your help, generosity, and love!










Jack loved playing with his Gramma!







Jack’s feelings about going inside



Ice skating in an outdoor arena…so much fun!



This is a view of sunset over Lake Michigan…I was obsessed with these trees and their haunting beauty



Ryan and his sister Jennifer…looking for baby names!  Jennifer is due with their 1st (and Jack’s 1st cousin!) in May.



Here’s the snow story: After one day of getting to play in the snow, the weather warmed up and it rained, which melted all the snow away.  Sad!  So, naturally, I started to pray for snow.  And God gave me some!  Although it started late on the evening before we left, it was magical all the same.



This one reminded me of someplace like Narnia…maybe it’s just the lamp-posts  🙂


Christmas Eve on the Beach

Filed under: Family and Friends,Holidays — Michelle @ 10:13 pm



Bagdanov cousins (on my mom’s side)



The newest cousin!  Don’t you love her cheeks?



My boys and I






Jack and his Nana



My family



Melissa, Laura, Me, Aunt Lana, Debbee, and Katie





Thankful in Dallas November 27, 2008

Filed under: Family and Friends,Holidays — Michelle @ 5:30 pm



We’re in Dallas this Thanksgiving visiting my uncle, aunt, and sweet 10-month old cousin!  My mom, sister and grandparents are here too, and we’ve been having tons of fun together.  I’ll blog more about it all later, but for now just wanted to say Happy Thanksgiving!!  Hope you have had a wonderful day filled with many reminders of the blessings that come from above.  Our good God has given us so much to thank him for!  My heart is full.  The pic above is of Hope and Jackson, two little ones I am DEFINITELY thankful for.


He’s 4! November 21, 2008

Filed under: Birthdays,Family and Friends,Fun — Michelle @ 8:42 pm

Last Saturday, my little boy turned 4 years old!!  Ryan and I are so incredibly thankful for Jackson Moses Dean (‘Jack-Jack,” “JMoses,” “Jackster,” “Punky”) and for the way that God is shaping his life.  He makes us laugh daily, and sometimes we have to shake our heads at his questions, advanced vocabulary, and surprisingly accurate observations about life.  He loves music, superheroes, going to Master’s Kids, and candy.  He can say and identify all the letters of the alphabet (I had to add that b/c I was a Kindergarten teacher. 🙂  We are praying for his understanding of the Gospel and his sin to deepen, and that he would repent and accept God’s free gift of salvation.  We love our Jackson Boy!



Chuck E Cheese for birthday fun with friends




Some of Jack’s favorite friends (from left: David, Jack, Isaac, and Sam)



img_3040          img_3037

 Here are the same boys a week earlier at David’s superhero birthday party, and Jack in his superhero pose




After Chuck E Cheese, we were so happy to get to meet up with more favorite friends, the Bohrs, who were on their way home to Fresno.  Jack loves Ethan and Ellie!!




the morning of his birthday with his decorated door!




This collage needs some explanation…we had planned to have a family party on Saturday at my parents’, but that was the day that fires were threatening numerous parts of Sothern California, which closed the freeways directly in our path.  Sooooo…after much discussion, we decided that although we would cancel the party, we still would try to get to my parents’ house.  We knew it would take a lot longer than normal to go all the way around (if you look closely in the top left pic, you’ll see the line of cars stretching endlessly in front of us as we drove between 1 and 2 mph), but we agreed that it was better than sitting at home being sad.  The other top row pics are of some cool scenery we passed as we went over the hill to Moorpark.  When we got on the 101 (finally), we stopped to get McDonald’s Mc Flurrys, since Jack was being a trooper.  I got really sad when he asked at one point, “Is my party over already?”  The rest of the shots are of the smoky scenes we passed.  After 5 HOURS of driving, we made it!!




My sweet mom and sister did a lot to make sure Jack still had a fun “mini” party, complete with extra presents and balloons.




The wonderful family members who were able to be there: Debbee, Aunt Melissa (“Mimi”), Baba and Deda (who almost got evacuated themselves), and of course, the wonderful Papa and Nana!  We had a great evening together.`




The 4 year old!!



            fhgfugfgjg hfhvgjg;;;;;;;;;gbtgjbngnnhnbkghjkhghkhkhyhuygutyuthhhh  .j


(this is because Jack wanted to type…)


Glorious Girly Getaway Weekend October 25, 2008

Filed under: Family and Friends,Fun — Michelle @ 1:10 pm

I am so excited to finally have some time to blog!  The past few weeks have been packed FULL with other stuff, and so often I have just wanted to sit down and write a post, but everything else was shouting louder to demand my attention.  Today, I have a few minutes…yay!!!

God is so good.  Not only did He provide me with sweet encouragement from blog readers after my last post, but He also orchestrated the timing of a Girls Getaway Weekend (a gift from my sister and my aunt for my birthday).  The purpose?  To get away as girls, and relax, and read, and watch Anne of Green Gables.  That’s all.  It was glorious.


The timing was perfect, the weather was breathtaking, the company was delightful, the reading material was prolific, visiting gardens was serene, being in my aunt’s home was refreshing, and of course…there was Anne. 


The sky as we were landing in Seattle…it was wonderful to get a real taste of fall, since our So Cal “fall” weather has been in the 90’s…


The bedside table in my room…


My Friday morning walk


Bellevue Botanical Gardens…my lovely aunt Lana and I on the left, cousin-in-law (and friend) Laura and I in the center, and sister (who thought this all up) with Laura on the right


Our almost 3-hour vacation shopping trip to Whole Foods…what fun!!


My cousin Katie joined us later that evening, and we baked cookies and made hot cocoa in preparation for Anne Evening #1


In our comfies ready to begin!


Saturday morning we had ebleskivers (YUM!!!) and took a group walk (joined by Uncle Steve and cousin Josh) to a spot in the neighborhood where you can see Mt. Rainier


The rest of the afternoon was spent preparing for High Tea…Katie prepared our beautiful place settings, (provided by my Aunt Lana and Aunt Ellen), while the rest of us worked together to make “duhlishus” tea delicacies


It was such a special thing to work hard together preparing, then be able to sit down and enjoy together what we had just prepared!  My aunt prayed for each one of us girls before we began, and I was reminded yet again of the blessing of the godly women that the Lord has placed in my family.  I never want to take that for granted.  It is such a gift to be family AND friends with these incredible ladies!


Each of us had a different teacup (mine is in the center).  We were very pleased with how our food turned out!


After cleaning up, we got comfy again to enjoy Anne Evening #2…we laughed, we cried…it was lovely!



On Sunday we were joined by my cousins Josh and Dan for breakfast, and then we set out for the Seattle Japanese Gardens.  On the way, we stopped so I could snap more fall tree pics…thanks, Costco Home parking lot!  🙂



The gardens were breathtaking and so calming.  I could do a whole post on that one place, but here are just a few views.


Taking off to fly home. 

“I don’t want diamond sunbursts, or marble halls…I just…want…another Anne weekend next year!” 

(I couldn’t resist one Anne quote with a few changes…it just seemed fitting)


Thank you to all you girls for a weekend of wonderful memories…thank you to my sweet and thoughtful sister for thinking up the whole thing, and thank you to my beautiful aunt for refreshing us all with your hospitality, generosity and love.