Fall 2013

Fall 2013

Thursday, December 31, 2009

Thankful Thursday - winding down the year

As I reflect back over the past year, there are many things that I am thankful for.

#1 - Health - Mark and I have been blessed with good health this year. My mom had a scare with melanoma earlier this fall. Thankfully, the surgeon was able to remove all the cancer and she is doing well. Our families have been safe and overall healthy - this is always a reason to be thankful!

#2 - Another year of school completed - When I first started school, I had planned to be graduating this month. Unfortunately, my work scheduled didn't allow for me to take as full of a courseload as I had hoped so I had to add an additional semester. But, with the support and encouragement of my friends and family, I have finished another year of college - AND I will begin my last semester in January. Graduation is only 126 days away - YAY!!!!

#3 - Family and Friends - You are such a wonderful blessing in our lives!

#4 - My terrific husband - 5 years ago this week, Mark and I were just starting to email each other, but hadn't met yet. I had no idea that our relationship would develop into something that fits both of us so well. I am so thankful that God blessed my life with this man!

#5 - Our adoption journey - Last year at this time, we were starting to talk about adoption and look at our options. Today, we have completed our home study and are approved for adoption! The journey has been and continues to be happy, sad, fun, challenging... oh, so many things. But, we are glad to be on it and we can't wait for God to bring "baby Hansen" into our lives!!

I hope you all have a safe New Year's Eve and blessed 2010!

Sunday, December 27, 2009


Hope that everyone had a wonderful and safe Christmas! The weather kept everything kind of uncertain this year. Church services were canceled Christmas Eve so I ended up with a quiet evening at home. Mark made it home from work Christmas Day morning - later than expected because of the roads. My parents were supposed to come to our house and then we would travel to my cousin's but again weather kept us all home. Mark and I enjoyed the day together - I had cooked a ginormous (HUGE) fresh ham to take to Marge's house so we didn't have to worry about having enough food - lol! I had the right ingredients to make cheese potatoes and green bean casserole (two of my favorite holiday dishes) so we enjoyed lunch, watched some Christmas shows and took a nap. All in all, it was a good day.

Yesterday, we celebrated Christmas with Mark's family. I didn't get as many pictures as I would have liked, but here are a few.

Mark's sister Betsy and her SO, Tim

Tim's son John and Mark's mom, Joanne

Mark's sister Sandy

We'll get together with my parents next weekend and probably go to my cousin's house sometime in January. Isn't that the fun of living in Minnesota?  Never know what to expect with the weather so we have to be prepared for all possibilities!

Today, Mark had an extra load to South Dakota. I went to church this morning - I love singing the Christmas carols and seeing the beautiful poinsettas decorating the sanctuary. The kids are so fun to see dressed in their Christmas best and full of energy from all those Christmas goodies! I'm looking forward to a Christmas when our little one is part of the festivities!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

A Thankful Thursday Merry Christmas

Although I am thankful for many things today, I'm going to write about the obvious one.

I am thankful that over two thousand years ago, a baby was born in a simple stable. Born to a young woman who showed complete faith and trust in God. Can you imagine Mary's conversation with Joseph? That had to be interesting. Yet, she believed and accepted her calling.

I am thankful that God cared enough about me (and YOU) to send His son - knowing the price He would pay in order to save us. That we were worth that ultimate sacrifice. Amazing, unconditional love - far beyond anything I can imagine.

I am thankful that Jesus chose to die for our sins, to act as the reconciler between us and our heavenly father - unselfish, compassionate, beyond compare.

And I am thankful for the chance to celebrate the birth of the Christ child and thank God for the gift which I did not deserve and cannot repay, but received anyway.

Merry Christmas to everyone!!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

A Few Christmas Favorites

TV Show - The Year Without a Santa Claus or How the Grinch Stole Christmas

Hymn - Silent Night

Movie - Probably National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation - Cousin Eddie cracks me up!

Funny Song - I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas

Cookie - Mini Chip Snowballs

Gift - Last year, I was just getting ready to start my clinical rotation in Fairmont. It's a 2 hour drive each way and although February isn't usually the snowiest month - the roads can be difficult at times. Under normal circumstances, I would not consider this romantic, but my sweet hubby put together an emergency kit that was so thoughtful and caring that it made me cry!

Tradition - Mark and I each have a stocking that hangs in our family room. On Christmas night, we fill each other's stockings. As soon as we wake up Christmas morning, we get the stockings, climb back into bed, and open our presents. It is one of my favorite parts of the holiday. I can't wait to share this tradition with our little one!

What are your favorite Christmas things?

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

How much can one squeeze into a day?

I'm pretty sure that I am one of those people who tends to thrive on chaos. It's 8pm and I am finally sitting down for a few minutes - I've been up and running since about 6:30am. Now, that's not much different than usual (and a sure to be expected experience if motherhood happens).  At least I've been productive!

Does anyone else feel like they are way ahead of the game and then when the week before Christmas comes realize that they still have a LOT to accomplish - or is it just me? Last night we had some snow and freezing rain - I was all set to leave this morning for my blood donation appointment and opened the garage door to find out that I probably wouldn't make it out of the driveway.  Hmmm... what to do? I had so much to get done! An angel in the form of our neighbor Jason saw me and zoomed over with his 4-wheeler, he had the driveway plowed in a matter of a few minutes - thank you so much Jason!!  You are terrific!! The bad roads probably kept people at home because the crowds weren't bad and the last of my shopping  is now done.  All but 3 presents are wrapped (I need Mark's help for those). Christmas cards are in the mail. Ham is defrosting in the fridge - it's HUGE! We took it out on Saturday evening and it's still pretty icy - must be about 15 pounds. Hopefully, it will be unthawed by Friday AM. More cookies baked this evening. Gift bags put together and spinach dip made for work holiday party and potluck tomorrow.  Laundry in process. Oops - forgot one thing - the kitties are reminding me that they haven't had their dinner - lol!!

But, I think I'm ready for Christmas - now I can relax and focus on the real reason for celebrating. Rett wrote an awesome post on her blog - I echo her thoughts.  Check it out here!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

the weekend before christmas

Melanie and I did some last minute shopping.  We ( I mean Melanie) have the Christmas cards set to go, I need to put stamps on them. Ken and Tasha should be coming over any time now for supper. We went to see Grandma Hansen on Saturday and gave her a goodie bag with some bread (gift of the Magi bread), honey, bisquit mix and pumpkin butter.  It was a good weekend


Thursday, December 17, 2009

Thankful Thursday

I'm cutting it close, aren't I?  I was tempted to skip posting today (just pooped out after a long day), but decided that it is more important to take a few minutes to reflect on what I am thankful for.

#1 - A good movie - I admit it, I love some of those really stupid movies. So... I have to say that I was excited to turn on the TV this evening (something I rarely do) and find one of the Austin Powers movies on.  Watching it was a fun way to pass time as I was wrapping some presents.

#2 - I'm also thankful that most of my Christmas shopping is done.  I have a few small items left to buy, but overall - I think I'm in pretty good shape. Anyone got a good idea for a food gift for  my preceptor who is a vegetarian?

#3 - I have to say that I am thankful tomorrow is Friday. I'm ready for the weekend - think I'm trying to accomplish too much during my school break! We're going to visit Mark's grandma and I'm looking forward to that. I need to get Christmas cards ready to mail - I was hoping to have them out by now, but it's my goal to get them finished by Sunday. So... I"m looking forward to a productive couple days.

#4 - That my hubby will be home later tonight. We've both had a busy week and I haven't seen him much. It will be nice to have some time together this weekend.

What are you thankful for today?

Monday, December 14, 2009

Happy News for Dwight and Linn

I've mentioned Dwight and Linn before - they are an amazing couple who love God and have filled their home with children. They have been in the process of bringing Jubilee home from China for nearly 2 years and the road has been filled with blockades at times. Recently, they were told that their chances of adopting Jubilee were not looking good - yet they trusted God's promise to them and chose to act as if they had not even received this news. As I write this, Linn and daughter Emma are in China - their court date for Jubilee's adoption is Monday and they will be bringing her home on December 23!  What a reminder of God's faithfulness!  Click here to see their "Gotcha day."

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Faith & Musings

I prefer to live my faith quietly.  Yes, it is the heart of who I am. Without my faith, who knows where I would be today?  God has sustained me at some of the lowest points in my life and deserves all the credit for the happiest and most joyous moments as well. Friends have told me that their faith has been deepened and strengthened by watching some of the struggles I have went through. I say that VERY humbly because although I want to be an example to others, I am the first to admit that I am soooo human! It is easy for me to go about my day without stopping to seek guidance or fully consider my words, thoughts, and deeds.  My actions fall far short of my intentions when it comes to living out my faith.

Our church's choir concert was today.  Our teenager group "Mountain Movers" sang a song that really touched my heart and convicted me. It is by Casting Crowns and is called, "While You Were Sleeping."  I've added it to the songs on the play list and I encourage you to listen to it.  If it doesn't play right away, you can always scroll to the bottom and select the song to hear it play. The words that spoke to me were:

"United States of America
Looks like another silent night
As we're sung to sleep by philosophies
That save the trees and kill the children...

America, what will we miss while we are sleeping
Will Jesus come again
And leave us slumbering where we lay
America, will we go down in history
As a nation with no room for its King
Will we be sleeping?"

I don't know why this struck me so profoundly today, but it did. Where are my priorities?  What is important in my life?  Do I put God at the top of my list or does He get "fit in" after I  have accomplished everything else that I think I need to get done in my day?  Where does He fit in your life?  I'm pretty sure that I need to be more conscious about keeping God at the top of my list.  We talked about this recently in our visionary parenting class at church. #1 - God, #2 - Spouse, #3 - Children - then everything else falls into place. 

Yes... just my thoughts and ramblings.  I'd be curious to hear what you think!!

And on a little less serious note, a couple of pics to share with you...

I meant to take some pictures of our Christmas open house yesterday, but as people started showing up I totally forgot.  However, I did get one picture as we were getting ready for the fun.  Vivien felt the need to supervise and direct.  Yes, I chased her off the table before getting any food out!!  We had a nice time - small turnout, but it did give us the chance to visit with people a little more.

My Reeces's Rainbow ornaments arrived yesterday!  Duncan has found his forever family, but Anastasiya and Jeffrey are still waiting for theirs.  What beatiful angels they are!!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Thank you Sarah!!

I wanted to share the very special items that I won on my friend Sarah's blog giveaway.  What is even more important is that Duncan - the little boy that Sarah is a Christmas Warrior for - has a family who is committed to bringing him home!  And other children on Reese's Rainbow have found their forever families, too!

This picture does not even come close to showing how adorable this little tutu is!  You'll have to take my word for it - or check out LeeAnn's website - she is making these to raise money to bring Olga home.

And here are my other goodies from Sarah - some absolutely yummy soaps and a beautiful soap dish,
3 soft and very pretty dish clothes, and my favorite noodles made by Sarah's mom Judy (not much better than a crockpot of beef and noodles)!

Thankful Thursday

A couple things come to mind right away this morning as I think about what I am thankful for today.

#1 - Heated car seats - It is chilly out there!! Although my car is parked in the garage - that seat was awful cold this morning - well, at least until the seat heater warmed up.

#2 - As many of you know (first hand), we have had some nasty weather over the last couple days.  Yesterday morning, I was not looking forward to the drive to work - but hey, the bills have to be paid.  :)  Mark had not made it home yet as I was getting ready to leave around 6am - he called at about 3am to tell me he was stuck and waiting for a tow truck to pull him out. I opened the garage door and found a snow drift about 3 feet high in the driveway. There was no way that I was making it through that! As I was trying to decide what to do, my sweet husband called to tell me he was almost home.  After about 30 hours with minimal sleep, he still drove me to work before coming home to clear the driveway out, getting a few hours of shut eye, then coming to pick me up from work.  Then, he had to leave for work again. He is a thoughtful, considerate man who I love VERY much!!

#3 - I need to get some pictures posted (I'll try to do that later today) - I am excited about my recent "winnings" from my friend Sarah's blog!  I can't wait to use them, especially cooking with her mom Judy's awesome noodles!

Sunday, December 6, 2009

What have I been up to?

It's been a busy week!  I was at my clinical site on Monday and Tuesday.  Finals Wednesday and Thursday.  I had planned to get a little more blogging done, but time got away from me.  So... what other than the above, what's kept me busy the rest of this week?

Decorating the house for Christmas

Our family room has a snowman theme - it's also where my Precious Moments nativity is set up.

Friday was spent getting ready for Cookie Day. Each year, my mom and I host friends and family for an annual Christmas cookie bake.  We average at least 10 different kinds of cookies and other treats - and at least 10 dozen of EACH kind.  It's a fun way to visit and get holiday baking accomplished.
Yesterday was THE day.

Spritz cookies are Gail's responsibility

Mark is "supervising" Gail and Tasha as they make sugar cookies.

Just a few of the different cookies and goodies that everyone went home with!

Tasha and I at the end of a long day of baking cookies!

Thought I might take a day to relax, but the week is looking pretty full.  So... Mark and I decided to get a few things done in preparation for our annual Christmas open house which will be held next Saturday. 
I put him to work making meatballs - always a favorite!

We are looking forward to sharing our usual holiday traditions with our children
as well as making new traditions together as a family -
hopefully next year, I'll be here posting pictures of us with a precious gift from God - our "baby Hansen!"

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Thankful Thursday

I meant to post some pictures and my Thankful Thursday earlier today, but our internet was down.  Now it's late and I am pooped out so this is going to be just a quick version - I'll have to save the pictures for tomorrow. 

#1 - Final exams are finished for the semester!!  I can't tell you how glad I am that this semester is over with.  Working part-time, going to school full-time, plus trying to get as many residency hours in has really been a challenge. There were definitely days that I had to pray for strength and determination to keep going.  Not sure how I did on my exams yet, but at least they are done. I will continue to work on my residency hours over the holiday break, but no classes until January.  YAY!! 

#2 - The comfy bed that is calling my name right now! 

Yep - that's about it for the night!  Have a good one!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009


Tonight, I am just wishing that our little one was here so that I could be holding him/her in my arms right now.