Thursday, July 30, 2015

Happy Birthday Peanut!

It's hard to believe that an entire decade has passed since this little Peanut entered my life. I can clearly remember the day he was born...

First of all...he was two weeks early! I was in the middle of the biggest project to date at work. Not only were we rebranding from The New PL to A-Channel, but we were also changing graphics systems at the same time. For the Graphics Coordinator of the newsroom...that was a tall order. But, I felt confident and up to the challenge. Until I got the phone call. We were just finishing up the evening newscast when Jo-Anne called to let me know they were on their way to the hospital. What?!? Seriously? If this is a joke, it's not funny. No, it was definitely not a joke. She was in labour.

I cleared my schedule with my (accommodating) supervisor and headed for St. Joe's. This was a moment I had been anticipating since finding out about the Peanut on December 24! Despite arriving "early" he took his time with the delivery. We spent many hours on those hard benches in the waiting room. However, it was all worth it when I entered the room and saw that adorable little bundle.

Jesse has always had a special place in my heart. He's the only kid that I've been in the waiting room for. He is curious - asking questions and being "hands on". He is loving and sweet. He is funny. He loves science and exploring and is really great at figuring out how things work.

I am so blessed to have Jesse Harding Koiter for my nephew. We have had some super fun moments over the years and I look forward to many more!

Friday, July 17, 2015

Good Things Come to Those That Wait

Four months ago, I woke up feeling nervous but excited. I was going to meet face-to-face with someone I had connected with on eHarmony about a month before. I know, I dating. Gah! But it had worked for a few of my friends and what did I have to lose?

Devin's profile caught my eye when I saw this photo --> Honestly, I was not looking for a single dad and in the past had dismissed any matches that had kids. But, this photo spoke to me. I loved the backdrop - it reminded me of my fishing trip last summer. And I loved the two faces looking at me. As I clicked through his profile, I noticed how open and honest he was with the information he shared. I decided to contact him. Over the next few days, we messaged back and forth and I definitely felt a connection with this guy.

We continued to communicate by email/text and we finally made arrangements to meet in person when he came back from Florida. Since he lives in Welland and I live in London, we met halfway in Brantford at The Keg. All afternoon my stomach was in knots. My friend Jackie messaged me to see if I was excited and I told her I felt like I might be sick. She laughed and said that's "butterflies" and that I should enjoy it. Ha ha. Enjoy it? Why, oh why are first dates so nerve-wracking? 

As I suspected, as soon as the initial "hi, I'm Janice" was over, I was just fine. In fact, it was the best first date I can remember! We had so much to talk about and the whole evening just seemed so easy. We had to leave when they were closing The Keg, but we weren't done talking! In fact, we have had many dates where the time slips through our fingers and logistics force us to shut it down.

I've often wondered where my path in life would lead me. I certainly didn't anticipate being 38 years old and single. But, God did. He knew the decisions that I would make that would lead me to this point in my life and the experiences that would shape who I am today. He was also working in Devin's life at just the time that I was wondering why things had not worked out for me in this regard. We are both convinced that He brought the two of us together.

I am so lucky to have found someone that shares my family values, is solid in his faith and treats me with respect and intentionality. I look forward to what the future has in store for us!

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

16 Candles

There are milestone birthdays in everyone's life. I clearly remember turning 16 because it meant I could get my driver's license. I turned 19 in France. Of course turning 30 carried its own consequences!

Today, my niece Abigail Elizabeth marks a milestone as she turns 16. I am so proud of the beautiful young lady she has grown to be. I realize that calling her a "young lady" makes me sound old...but that is what she is! John & Karen have done an awesome job parenting and stewarding this girl to where she is now.

I became an auntie when Abby was born, so she holds a special place in my heart. We've had lots of fun over the years with sleepovers, picnics, special outings, etc. I'm thrilled that she has developed such a love of music (playing the guitar, piano, trombone and learning more!) and is quite the little performer!

Happy birthday Abigail as you mark this milestone. Now, stay off the roads everyone! :)

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Mr. Liam

It's hard to believe but eight years ago today, this little firecracker was born. I clearly remember getting a call from Jo-Anne. She needed me to come over to watch Jesse because they were headed for the hospital. It was around dinner time, so I packed an overnight bag and hit the road. When I arrived at their place, they were just finishing up Swiss Chalet take out. I stayed with the Peanut while Jo-Anne and Nick set off for the hospital.

When he finally arrived (just before midnight) he had a shock of dark hair and the cutest little face. We were all thrilled to meet the newest member of our family. Since then, I've watched Liam grow into quite the little character. The things this kid comes out with are hilarious! He makes some very interesting observations sometimes and it's like he's an old man trapped in a little boy's body.

Liam has a great sense of rhythm and music and is constantly bee-bopping to his own beat. He is passionate about food and loves helping out in the kitchen. This little guy has added much joy and laughter into my life and today I'm happy to celebrate his 8th birthday.

Thursday, July 02, 2015

Follow Up

I wanted to take a moment to follow up my previous post about Dad. He has made amazing progress and is heading home today, after only two and a half weeks!

We are so very proud of his determination and effort during his various therapy sessions. He still has some work to do, but he is well on his way!

Thanks for your thoughts & prayers.