Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Change of Plans

- From Aaron

We weren't originally planning on coming home for the holidays, but our plans changed.
We're not sure what our schedule is yet or exactly how long we'll be stateside, but this is a helpful time to disconnect and regroup a little.
Don't be surprised if the blog is quiet while we enjoy some time resting and connecting with family.

The Hendrick family

Saturday, December 24, 2011

December Beach Birthday

Little one.  We love you.  
We love you even though you keep getting older, when we've asked you to stop that.

We celebrate your sweet life and pray you know how very special you are to us and the God who made each freckle on your precious face.  You are such a smart, happy, loving little boy but we're most thankful for the simple fact that you are ours and God trusted you to our care.  Eight Christmas Eves ago you came into our lives and have since been one of the greatest gifts we have ever been given.  Happy Birthday Ashton.

Monday, December 19, 2011

New Family Photos:: New Blog Design

The talented and patient Troy Livesay took some photos for our family this past week.  The same night he took our pictures, he also made Kung Pow Chicken and let us eat it.  Family photos + Kung Pow Chicken = A few hours when we all thought maybe Troy could jump over high buildings and pull off wearing stretchy pants.

Tara held a flash high in the air.  It felt so legit.  We looked like freaks on the streets of Port-au-Prince.

Thank you Troy for making us look a lot cooler than we really are...and for making us look less sweaty and less ready to strangle our kids.

This year was one of the least stressful picture taking years.  Why you ask?  Because I was sure whatever endeavors I made for us to match and look nice and all be smiley would be ruined by the time we drove two short miles to where we were taking the photos.  So there was no color scheme for our clothing.  The only request of the boys:  Please don't lean up against your dad's nasty truck.  The kid's shoes were filthy.  The clothes I wanted to wear looked dumb on me, and I changed them at the very last minute.  These are some of the only shirts we own that don't have weird little holes in them.  Why this happens to clothing here is a huge mystery to me.  So there ya go.  I had low expectations..heck...I practically had zero expectations and it turned out great.  I'm sure we owe it all to Tara's high-held flash.

The real us
It looks like I'm trying to push out a baby and Aaron is a serial killer.

Haiti makes me over the top nutty most days, but I must hand it to this has a way of turning type A, first born control freaks into people who are totally like, "Meh" about things they used to be insane about.  I think I will be forever grateful for this phenomenon once it stops making me wonder if I should move into an insane asylum.

Thank you Aaron Hendrick for making this here blog look so bangin.  You are the best, and I already know you can pull off stretchy pants.

And thank YOU for bearing with me as I sound like I'm accepting an Oscar or something.  Sheesh.

I'll shut it up now because I sound a tad bit obnoxious, and we all know I need to save my acceptance speech for when I receive my Oscar for guest appearance on Glee.

We're off to this magical place this morning to celebrate a soon to be eight year old.  Why do babies have to get bigger?  Why oh why oh why oh why?

Sunday, December 18, 2011


Aaron finished the fence yesterday on our 112th attempt to grow a garden.
We've never added a fence before.
We figure when the garden fails, we will still have a fence.
Which means we're already winners.

Imagine that arbor and fence covered in beautiful vines.
It's so dreamy, I can barely stand it.
The boys scavenged rocks from all over the yard to form the walkways.
You would have thought they were building the Taj Mahal.
Aren't kid's brains magical?
Do you miss your kid brain?  I do.

To celebrate the fence's completion the lettuce popped up.
Wasn't that thoughtful?
Be still my beating heart.

Our first cilantro leaf.
Is it strange to sit and stare at one cilantro leaf for 15 minutes?
And think of salsa and creamy jalapeno sauce?
And then drool like a mastiff?
Don't answer that.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Saturday Suggestion

We recommend sitting down with someone you love and letting your jaw drop in marvelous wonder. It does a soul good to feel incredibly small.

Boston Globe: The Big Picture: 50 Best Photos from the Natural World.

Happy Saturday.

Those who dwell among the beauties and mysteries of the earth are never alone or weary of life.  
~ Rachel Carson

Friday, December 16, 2011

Guess What? We Won!

Thank you for voting, begging your friends and family members to vote, and for not unfriending us as we annoyingly asked you over and over and over to vote for Heartline.

No one tell the children, but I guess some times it does pay to whine, beg, and be a nuisance!  Thanks for doing that to help us spread the word.

Thank you for loving our women and our babies.  Thank you for standing with us as we fight injustice and dream of a world where women and children's lives are important and valued.

Thank you, Giving of Life.  

We're fist pumping the sky over here celebrating this glimpse of justice and sweet mercy!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

A Child is Born

Rosemarie had her baby this morning.  Baby is nursing like it is her job.  Mom lost a lot of blood.  Your prayers are appreciated.  As always, I'm incredibly thankful for the midwives at Heartline.

If you would like to pray for our pregnant ladies, here is a link with photos and information.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Tin Whistle Concert

Bingo.  This picture captured exactly how thrilled Anson was to be playing the tin whistle.

The fine arts emphasis for the past six weeks of Classical Conversations has been tin whistle.  The kids have been learning music theory and practicing, practicing, practicing for their tin whistle Christmas concert.

For six weeks they have played these pesky instruments.  For six weeks I have wanted ear plugs and have said no less than 100 times, "Please.  Will you go in your room and play that.  And shut the door?  Or maybe the roof would be a good place to practice.  How about I dig you a giant hole in the backyard and you can climb down in it and practice?  That would be cool, right?  Or what about I send you on an airplane and you practice your tin whistle at your grandparent's house?  Wouldn't that be fun? 

I've got Peace Like a River played on a tin whistle by a seven year old is anything but peaceful.  It's actually an oxymoron.

If you want to torture someone let three kids play three different songs on the tin whistle at the same time.

But their big day came and watching them play away on their tin whistles was really, really sweet.  They played music and recited part of the Christmas story.  Children telling this precious story of a baby born in a manger will forever be a thing of beauty.

We only have three more days of school left.  I can't wait for the school books (and the tin whistles) to be put away.  I am ready to have these crazy kids all to myself for a few weeks.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Sticks, Boys, Gardens

I was busy giving ugly buckets a face lift when Santa's sleigh Aaron's truck drove up.

Aaron paid a visit to the stick guy.  Our sons could not believe their eyes.
Four boys stood drooling and in awe of an entire truck-bed full of giant. sticks.
When we saw their stick-marveling faces Aaron and I had a revelation.
We should have waited and gotten the boys a truck load of behemoth sticks for Christmas.
We totally blew this.
Did you hear anything I just said or are you busy staring at the dirt on Aaron's truck?

Artemis thought she died and went to heaven.
I think she pulled a "sweep the knees" on Aaron right after I snapped this photo.
She doubles as a ninja.

Aaron built a beautiful fence all day.
It will be dreamy once it's finished.
He was dreamy in the meantime.

This is the cutest kid on earth.  The end.
Look at those lips.  If he can hold them just so...the nail will go in.
He attempted to hammer that same nail into every stick in the yard.

There was a moment as Aaron was driving fat sticks into the ground with a sledge hammer when he roared, "I feel like such a PIE-UH-NEER!" Rar. For some reason men think it would be cool to live like the people on Little House on the Prairie.  After he got feeling back in his arms Aaron sobered up.  "Well.  I feel like such a pioneer...until I walk over there and use my battery powered skill saw."  Whah-whah.  It was fun to feel like Charles Ingalls for 11 seconds.

Is it wrong to pray sincere prayers for cilantro to grow?  90% of our diet prior to moving here consisted of Mexican food.  The other 10% was made up of cream cheese.  If I could grow cream cheese I would.

Is there a better feeling?

Yes.  That 90 year old white lady is still hanging out in our back yard.  Total creeper.

This...this right makes my heart skip a beat.
New life bursting forth.  
Tiny growing bigger.
Weak getting stronger.
Reaching for the light.
Telling the truth.
Whispering, "Remember.  Never forget."