Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Merry Christmas

We are enjoying our Christmas celebrations in MI with family and friends. It's been so good to be with our family as we celebrate God's gift to us, Jesus. As Malachi would say, "happy birthday Jesus." The cold air, bare trees and blazing fireplace have kept us in a festive mood; our childhood memories will be forever linked to a midwest Christmas experience not sunny skies and California palm trees. Although we love the fact that we will soon be greeted by CA warmth when we open the door rather than frigid mind numbing wind. We've had some snow and just enough to give Malachi the delight of making snowmen.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

an opa sighting

my dad had a meeting in pasadena yesterday, he flew in that morning and out in the evening. so we drove to hang out for about an hour and a half, we'll take anytime we can get. malachi was excited to see opa and it also thrilled him that opa flew on a plane to see him. the last week every plane we see has been opa's plane and we've had to explain that those planes were not actually carrying opa at the moment. malachi is also obsessed with mater and mc queen from the movie, cars. he has never seen the movie, but he has a book about them. so he received a couple little cars as a surprise from opa and they are now with him all day long. this adds to the excitement of malachi now sleeping in a big boy bed with is new pillow shaped like mater the tow truck, its worked great. he loves sleeping with mater and he has transitioned out the crib and now claims the bed as his own. he stays in bed once we put him down and he stays in bed in the morning until ryan or i come to get him. it's gone a lot easier than i imagined, now if everything else about an almost 2 year old energetic litte boy could be as easy. like how to stop him from throwing food to the dog or sitting in abram's baby swing....

Sunday, December 2, 2007

2nd Annual Tryptophantastic 4.7 K Run/Walk video

our friend allison shot this short clip - it is a little belated...

Friday, November 30, 2007

hot coco and rain

it is really raining, not just spitting rain, the real stuff, so we had a hot coco party today to celebrate! half of malachi's spilled all over but we had fun.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

life with malachi and abram

i thought i would share a glimpse into a day with malachi and abram because sometimes i forget that what they do each day changes from week to week and some of you don't get to see them all that often. so here are some things you discover about malachi if you spent the day with him:
- he loves airplanes, the picture above is next to the long beach airport where we can go and watch planes land and take off, sometimes the pilots even wave at us.
- he repeats a lot of what we say - so he has learned some interesting words from us and others who live with us, eric and dirk. eric recently let him know that the you tube video he loves of monster trucks (yes our son is addicted to you tube, and asks multiple times in the day to watch, and i quote, "boom boom") has the music of the song "bad to the bone," so now his latest phrase is bad to the bone, associated with eric.... dirk taught him to raise his fists and say trouble, so i asked kai the other day to do trouble and he said dirk, dirk: so dirk is associated with trouble, i have to say dirk set himself up with that one
- he often leaves a room, shuts the door and tells us bye-bye, see ya
- he peels the tangerines we get from the farmers market all by himself
- he sleeps with his cars and trucks, most kids sleep with something soft but not malachi, he insists on 3 or 4 cars going to bed with him each time
- he has this look when he isn't going to listen to me, he looks out of the corner of his eyes at me and then proceeds to do the opposite of what i ask
- he loves his little brother and gives him gentle kisses and a blessing on the head, he also tried feeding him a fishy cracker the other day, what a great sharer, thankfully i heard him tell Abram, 'Here ya go,' and promptly removed the cracker from his mouth before he choked
- he is pretty adventurous and has learned that he can climb on top of the cave at the new pirate park, he is actually a great climber much to my dismay, but his climbing is not allowed because my friend who is skilled rock climber told me she doesn't even let high school students climb above their height when rock climbing and this cave is probably 9 feet high. so we aren't going to find out if malachi would be brave enough to jump off...
- he loves reading books and sometimes just sits by himself and reads behind the book shelf -thanks to loving grandparents his book supply is endless
- a few of his favorite things: baseball, elmo, football (he already cheers for USC by saying GO Trojans), cars and trucks of any size and shape, Sienna, singing & dancing, and his blankie

now for abram

our little guy Abram, who is now 2 months old and such a sweet baby is changing to quickly. i can't believe its been 2 months since his birth day and his speedy arrival on a Saturday afternoon. i know a lot of people have heard his birth story...but let's just say i still think about the day and am so thankful he wasn't born in the car on the way to the hospital, it was way too close. we had his 2 month appointment today and this is the latest:
- today he weighed in at 13lbs 6 oz and is 25 1/4 inches long and is very healthy
- he makes me smile because when I reach to pick him up from a nap his smiles greet me almost every time - he warms my heart
- his little voice is developing and he likes to tell us long stories, while he looks at our faces very intently
- ryan discovered his ribs are very ticklish and he laughs when he is tickled in the right spot - a baby's giggle is so great
- he still likes to wake me up at about 2 am and 5 am to eat - what great bonding time in the middle of the night - thankfully he falls right back to sleep and so do i
- being swaddled tightly helps him sleep like a champ and we have the best swaddling blankets, thanks to our friend allison, aden and anais is the brand and they are GREAT
- being in the sling is one of his favorite spots and puts him right to sleep, this also allows us to go grocery shopping, on walks and just get around town rather easily
- his eyes are still very blue so the jury is still out on whether they will change
- he enjoys being in his swing and on his playmat which is great because then I can get a few things done around the house

so those are the updates of my boys. i am so thankful for them and what a gift they are, and how they are teaching me incredible lessons about life, sacrifice, love and serving. i was reminded listening to the radio the other day that Jesus told us to be like little children and what a privilege to be with little children each day who remind me about what Jesus desires of my attitude and heart. today as ryan walked out the door malachi understood he was going to the office and then said mommy, home. i am thankful to be home with him and to not miss out on the moments of each day. in the last weeks i have been sad about leaving my job at Kingdom Causes and have really been processing about where my time if any will be spent working outside the home. through many conversations live and by email, in prayer, and just my thoughts i have been so challenged to grow into a new season of life with two little boys and my incredible husband who walks with me. (plus great friends and family to support us) i am still learning and processing as i write this, but i am also incredibly thankful for today and being right where i am.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

2nd Annual Tryptophantastic 4.7 K Run/Walk

On Thanksgiving morning we continued a family tradition that we started last year. The Tryptophantastic Run/Walk is a fun run through Bellflower, that is still relatively "underground" (that means it is just us and a few friends). This year the race began at 8:31 and everyone who participated had personal records for the course, not to mention that everyone won the race for thier specific age bracket. The Fieldhouse's, Pruett's, Annika, Eric, Heidi and Sam (one of our homeless neighbors and her dog) were all in on the action. It was a lot of fun and we are certain to do it again next year. So put it in your calendars now, Thanksgiving Day 2008 at 8:31!

Monday, November 12, 2007

abram's little smiles

here is a peek at our little buddy abram.

Friday, November 9, 2007

night out



the girls: me, tia, and chrissy

my life is dictated by abram's feedings right now - he hasn't had a bottle yet...but since he has been going down at 9 i went out with my sister and our friends last weekend. it was the first time out without any of my boys (ryan stayed home with the boys). i felt a little strange without someone with me needing my attention for something, but i got over it kind of quickly. it was also the first time in awhile that i arrived somewhere at 10 to begin the evening - i'm 29 now and not in college. we went to this hole in the wall place, but kinda cool, where an 80's kareoke cover band was playing. so instead of a sound track for those brave souls singing, it was a live band, and they were good. our friends chrissy and shaun were brave and performed for the crowd, they rocked. it was a fun night with my sister and friends and now i'll probably return to most evenings where i'm home by 10 now that my sister has returned to MI.

abram is growing

as i type abram is lying on the chair in the living room falling asleep. he has his little arms spread out and is tucked into the corner. he is changing so fast and getting chubbier cheeks and legs, but is still longer and leaner than malachi was as a baby. it's funny how the clothes just fit abram differently. abram has also started greeting us with little smiles and sweet baby coos, it's so amazing to see his development. God's creativity becomes so evident to me when i look at his deep blue eyes, his little nose and long fingers. he's such a sweet baby - although last night when he woke up every 2 hours I didn't think that was the sweetest thing to do. He had been going down at 9, sleeping until 2am and then 5am and back to sleep until 7:30 - that routine is when I moved from my zombie state to an increased energy level and awareness of life around me. so hopefully tonight we can go back to long streches of sleep again. below is abe at 6 weeks!

Thursday, November 8, 2007

lucy the lizard

the first picture captures how malachi felt about the pet lizard he had for 2 days last week. not just a little gecko but a full on lizard. ryan found the lizard in our yard and caught it in the bug catcher. the lizard was affectionately named lucy and shared the bug catcher with an enormous jerusalem cricket that they also caught. malachi's face lite up when he saw the lizard. on the other hand my stomach, in fact my whole body, felt shaky upon sight of this little guy. i acted excited when malachi ran to show me his new friend, at the same time i explained the lizard had to stay outside. i imagined a lizard running around my house... we have a dog and a fish and we didn't need another animal to take care of. lucy now lives in the backyard again and malachi looks for her when we play outside. i think lucy is much happier in the wild with all her other friends.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

elmo and pumpkin

here are a couple pictures from our halloween night. the rest of the pictures are on my sister's camera... i happened to have a elmo costume from a friend and malachi happens to love elmo. abram just wore a little pumpkin beanie. the boys had fun with their friends tessa, ely, micah, and elijah (aka: chick, ladybug, monkey and ghost)

(so I added some more pictures from our night, thanks sarah...)

Friday, October 26, 2007

a cup of coffee

coffee in the morning at our house is a staple - malachi can already tell you who in the house drinks that hot stuff. so these pictures give you an idea of the essentials of our morning routine - roasting, grinding, brewing and drinking the beans and hanging out with the boys.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

sponsored by you?

Tomorrow is the golf marathon for Kingdom Causes and Ryan is golfing a 100 holes to support the work that is transforming people and neighborhoods in Bellflower. I'm writing a blog entry about this because I'm excited about how we have seen God's hand at work. A teenager who frequents the community center is one story of God moving and bringing hope. Before getting connected to Kingdom Causes "Liz" had nothing to do after school, so this led to some negative activities. Through some other teens in the neighborhood she was introduced to Our Place, the community center, and started hanging around. Today she is part of the neighborhood teen leadership group and filling her days with activities that are building her as a leader and creating positive change in her life. As Ryan golfs 100 holes in the CA sunshine tomorrow it will be to continue the stories of hope like Liz's and grow Kingdom Causes.

Please consider pledging, it's not to late to sponsor Ryan, whether it's a set amount or per hole donation, each gift builds Kingdom Causes' capacity to transform lives and Bellflower. Go to to make a pledge. Thanks for your support!!

Thursday, October 18, 2007

moma and popa

we have enjoyed having my parents in town the last week, although my dad was working while he was here and made appearance to get his grandson fix. not only have i enjoyed the extra pair of hands around the house, but malachi and abram have had a blast playing with oma and opa, or in malachi's words, moma and popa. we have just hung out a lot, but also enjoyed the Bellflower Parade (50 year city celebration) and the Pumpkin Patch. highlights of the parade were mickey mouse waving hello to malachi and the dancing horses. we have to say the city kicked it up a notch with the 50 year birthday, this parade topped last years. then we went to the pumpkin patch on Tuesday, and ryan chased malachi around and around, the kid literally ran from one pumpkin to the next the whole time. thank goodness God created babies to just hang out... it's hard to believe we've almost had abram for a month now. so thats a brief of update from the verwys house.

Friday, October 12, 2007

Praying for Tessa

Today, Tessa Joy, our friends, Mark and Allison's,baby girl is having her first surgery for her cleft lip and palate. She is such a beautiful baby and her smile lights up a room, Malachi and Abram are already fighting over who gets to benefit from an arranged marriage. Tessa is in surgery this morning and then afterwards will have a couple weeks of restrictive recovery. Her little arms will be restrained so she doesn't touch her mouth, so no sucking for comfort. And she will have to be syringe fed for a time. Please pray with us that her surgery will go well, that she will have quick recovery and comfort, and that Mark and Allison will be sustained through this as well. Tessa has a long journey of surgeries and dr. visits ahead, and we trust that God will be faithful in walking with her and showing himself in every moment and day.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

malachi loves his little brother

A lot of people are wondering how Malachi is doing with a new little brother. We think each day brings new learning to his world about sharing, being patient, and loving Abram. He always asks where the baby is if Abram is not in his direct line of sight. Now he wants to hold him, but maybe only for a second and then he declares he is "done." Bascially Malachi has now learned that when mom nurses it means she can't get up and stop me from something, so he then jumps off the furniture or grabs the camera... What a smart kid. We think he loves Abram and is adjusting like any 21 month old would; with some fanfare and fun.

grandma verwys is here

Grandma VerWys met Abram for the first time on Saturday and is staying with us for a week. We love having her with us in CA and the boys love their grandma being with them. So having 2 little boys now isn't that hard when you have a grandma around to help. This is my easing into life with 2.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Welcome to the family Abram!

We are exctied to announce that little baby Abram Jack VerWys entered the world on Saturday September 22 at 5:32 pm. He weighed 8 lbs. and was 22 inches long.

I got to do the catching, as you can see in this picture. What a miracle!

We're looking forward to introducing him to you all soon.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Over The Rhine

beautiful! last night we treked through the rain of LA (which for all you who live out of ca it is an adventure) to the over rhine concert. i can't remember the last time i went to a concert and we hestitated because i am very pregnant, but i like this band and i probably won't go to a concert for another 2 years +. it was a great show and the venue was intimate so i felt like they were singing to us. it's always inspiring to be in the presence of musicians who compose thoughtful and intriguing lyrics and then play beautiful music with it. so anyway check out their website to hear their latest record:

Friday, September 21, 2007

my first baby is a little boy

malachi is becoming quite the little boy and i think this picture captures it all. notice he has an airplane shirt on - he loves airplanes and yesterday as we drove on the freeway to pick up my brother from the airport all i heard was; "mama, mama, mama" as he pointed out the planes to me flying next to the freeway. he thinks as i drive i am able to turn around and look at him to see what he is looking at...

also a fun quote our neighbor shared with me:
Life is short, break the rules, forgive quickly, kiss slowly, love truly, laugh uncontrollably, and never regret anything that made you smile.
Life may not be the party we hoped for, but while we're here we should dance...

Saturday, September 15, 2007

still pregnant

my due date is still days away (sept. 26th) and since i was 2 weeks late with malachi i don't anticipate making that date. i am continually stopped when i am out and about by curious on-lookers to confirm my prego belly is not a ball stuffed under my shirt or a guess at the sex of the baby. ryan and i were thinking we'd design a t-shirt that says "yes i am having a baby." ryan enjoys noticing the looks i get from people, i think i have become used to ignoring it.

we are excited to meet our little guy very soon and the reality that we will soon have 2 little boys is becoming more real. we met last night with our doula, who also was with us for malachi's birth, and we were again reminded how amazing the experience of pregnancy and birth and new life is. we are very thankful for the gift we have been given in the pregnancy and how much we have to look forward to in the birth of our son. God's presence is so alive in every detail of the baby's growth, birth and life. It struck me last night again how God has designed my body to nurture this life and then get it out into the world, incredible.

we will keep you all posted on our lives in the next couple weeks and let you know when the BIRTH DAY arrives. please pray for continued health and some comfortableness as my belly swells, a wonderful delivery and healthy baby.

thanking our firefighters

look at this

our neighbor hosts a barbecue every sept. 11th and then invites our local firefighters to come over and thank them for all the do. malachi was very excited to see the fire truck and check it all out. he loves making the sound of the sirens. later in the week as he lay on his changing table getting a new diaper he started making the siren noise. when i put him down he went to pick out his fire truck pjs. he loves fire trucks! he is in a truck and car phase right now and loves zooming his cars all over the place. he still asks daily to see the pictures from the demolition derby we went to in july. i think i'm destined to go to car shows and demolition derbies for the rest of my life!

Monday, September 3, 2007

malachi playing in the pillows

malachi showing me he is one

As I was folding laundry Malachi decided to play on the bed in the pillows. He then waited for me to get the camera and take his picture, maybe he has become used to us sticking a camera in his face all the time. We are trying to keep up with how quickly he is growing and changing and becoming a fun little boy.