Life, Kids, Sun

In Pennsylvania


Hi Friends!

Sorry it’s been so long since we’ve updated the blog. As we’ve settled into life & ministry in Florida, we haven’t carved out time to keep the blog updated like we have in the past.

Part of Micah’s new ministry responsibilities demand that he travel a little bit more. In the last month he has traveled to Virginia, Pennsylvania & California and he is headed to Russia at the end of the month! Would you be in prayer for his travels? As well as Katrina & the kids while he is away?

We are thankful for you! Thanks for checking our our blog, here are some pictures of Micah’s recent travels.

Manning the GSI table @ Liberty U.

Manning the GSI table @ Liberty U.

Enjoying free iced coffee from Chick Fil A.

Enjoying free iced coffee from Chick Fil A.

The girls waiting for our bags in Pennsylvania

The girls waiting for our bags in Pennsylvania

Getting some sledding in with Violet.

Getting some sledding in with Violet.

Attending the Shepherd's conference in California

Attending the Shepherd’s conference in California

Have to see the beach while in CA!

Have to see the beach while in CA!


kaboodle houseKatrina’s parents house where she grew up. They’ve lived in that house since they got married, 40 years ago.


We love the farmlands and rolling hills.


Violet helping Grandpa collect eggs from his chickens.

jason keira tractor

Katrina’s brother Jason giving Keira a ride.

violet autumn

Violet loved playing dress up and singing with her friend Autumn.

martin building

Micah and two friends toured the Martin Guitar Factory

anniversary video

Micah and I celebrated our 9th anniversary.


We got to go to a Five Iron Frenzy concert and got to meet Dennis from the band (and his daughter).

micah keith

Father/son selfie. Even smiling the same!

grandpa kids laughing

The kids loved playing with Grandma and Grandpa, especially when Grandpa climbed up in the playhouse, and they loved getting lots of pushes on their swing set.

family picnic

Dinner outside with family and friends.

Right now we are in California visiting family, friends, supporters & churches. In a couple weeks we’re headed to Missouri to do the same, then back to PA before we make our move down to Florida to start our next chapter of ministry. Thanks for checking out our blog!


Home Sweet Home

Its good to be back in PA! We have been catching up with friends & churches and the kids are enjoying playing on the farm with Grandpa and Grandma. Here are a couple pics of our time here in PA. California & Missouri: See you next month!

A tractor ride from Grandpa!

A tractor ride from Grandpa!

Eight grandkids!

Eight grandkids!

Family Weekend

Before we leave in just a day or so for the motherland across the ocean, we were able to go to Belleville with Katrina’s side of the family for their winter weekend vacation.  It was such a nice time of relaxation, laughing and good conversations.  Here are some pictures:



















IMG_0108We had a great time in Amish country with family, they will all be missed while we are away.


Please be thinking of us on Thursday as we fly across the ocean.  It looks like there might be some winter weather coming to the east coast, so we are hoping our flight doesn’t get delayed.

Headed Back!


Hi Friends,

We have bought plane tickets!  The departure date is March 7, please think about us as we wait to receive our visas and begin organizing our things to head back.

Thanks for checking out our blog!

Number three



Baby number three is gonna be a boy!!  We found out last week at my Week 20 ultrasound.  We are super excited and a little scared to find out what having a boy is all about.  But we are so thankful for this special gift.



He’s holding his foot in front of his face

Party time!



Let the games begin!…

Pin the tail on the donkey

Pin the tail on the donkey




The pony did not want to break... afterwards Micah showed the pony who was the boss!

The pony did not want to break… afterwards Micah showed the pony who was the boss!

Musical pillows

Musical pillows

If there is no seat, they needed to find a lap to sit on

If there is no seat, they needed to find a lap to sit on

The last round of musical pillows

The last round of musical pillows ended in one big pile



Happy Birthday to you, Happy Birthday to you…


Happy Birthday dear Violet, Happy Birthday to you!!


With our 4 year old!!

With our 4 year old!!

She requested chocolate cake with sprinkles

She requested chocolate cake with sprinkles

Little Timothy was the youngest guest

Little Timothy was the youngest guest

Time for presents…





Jam session afterwards

Jam session afterwards

Me and my friend Gwennie

Me and my friend Gwennie

Violet loves birthdays, especially her own!  She couldn’t wait to have a party and have everyone sing the birthday song TO HER!   She has grown up so much in this last year.  She really cracks us up with things she says sometimes.  Of course I can’t think of anything exactly right now, but I will try to put more of that on here.  She loves helping in the kitchen.  I love overhearing her with Keira, acting like she is her mommy, saying, careful Keira or don’t do that hunny. Violet LOVES chocolate! Maybe more than me, which is A LOT! She asks for it all day long.  Violet cannot wait for mommy to have the baby, she ask often when the baby is coming out of mommies belly.  She really wants to hold the baby.  Violet loves singing.  She is still making up songs about random things.  She loves being tickled and playing hide and go seek, especially with Grandpa.

We love our sweet baby girl, who is growing up so quickly!

15 Questions with Violet – Age 4

1. What is your favorite color? Green

2. What is your favorite toy?  Raggedy Anne and Raggedy Andy

3. What is your favorite fruit? Apple

4. What is your favorite movie? Sesame Street movies

5. What is your favorite meal? Cheeseburger and fries

6. What is your favorite snack? Chocolate

7. What is your favorite thing to eat for breakfast? Chocolate Chip Pancakes

8. What is your favorite drink? Apple juice

9. What is your favorite song? ABC’s

10. What is your favorite book? Raggedy Anne and Raggedy Andy books

11. Who is your best friend? Autumn

12. What is your favorite thing to do outside? Play in the snow

13. What is your favorite animal? Horse

14. What do you like to take to bed with you at night? Elmo

15. What do you want to be when you grow up? Dentist

A visit to the dentist

Violet had her first cleaning at the dentist.  I’ve been prepping her for when the day would come and I think it paid off.  She did great!  She did exactly what the hygienist asked her to do.  No crying, just obedience.  I love when that happens!!

Happy to be at the dentist

Happy to be at the dentist


Sitting still while the hygienist cleans her teeth


All clean, no cavities!


Also visiting Rachel at work


Getting the final check from the dentist

I’m so proud of our Violet.  I have seen kids act up badly while at the dentist (when I used to work there), so I was very happy our little girl was so good.  After the hygienist finished cleaning her teeth, she told Violet her teeth were all sparkly.  When we got home, she looked in the mirror and said to me, “Mom, I don’t see any sparkles.”  So cute!

Picture Day

A couple weeks ago a friend of ours came up from Lancaster to take some pictures of the girls, just for fun.  Thankfully, Violet was in a great mood that day.  Keira, not so much.  She did a great job, no matter what mood the girls had at the moment.  Thanks Dianne for taking great pictures we will keep forever.  Here are some of my favorites…

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Keira’s Conversation


We had a great Christmas with both sides of our family.  Micah’s mom and brother were able to be here for Christmas this year and we also spent the time with Katrina’s family as well.  We are cherishing this time together with all our family as much as possible, because before we know it, we will be headed to the ends of the earth.

Me and my girls

Me and my girls

Christmas meal with family

Christmas meal with family

Having fun with cousins

Having fun with cousins

Enjoying the newest addition

Enjoying the newest addition

Even Keira wanted to hold baby Afton

Even Keira wanted to hold baby Afton


Doctor visit - they both did great.  Violet didn't cry when she got her shot, she cried when she saw her sister getting hers.  She has such a caring heart.

Doctor visit – they both did great. Violet didn’t cry when she got her shot, she cried when she saw her sister getting hers. She has such a caring heart.

This little one is walking everywhere!  No more crawling.

This little one is walking everywhere! No more crawling.

Mommy and Violet had a fun times at a MOPS group making a gingerbread (graham cracker) house.

Mommy and Violet had a fun time at a MOPS group making a gingerbread (graham cracker) house.



Christmas is coming…




..and these girls are very happy about it!!


Catching up…

I finally uploaded pictures from our ipod, that needed to be done for some time.  Here are a bunch of random pictures from the last week or so that shows a little bit about what we have been up to.


Grandpa gave us all a ride in the big tractor

Grandpa gave us all a ride in the big tractor


Grandpa hard at work

Well, he doesn’t drive around tractors all day, but part of the time he works for John Deere.  It was fun taking the girls to see where Grandpa works, and to be able to ride in a nice new (pretty high-tech) tractor.

Violet loves helping Grandpa in the kitchen

Violet loves helping Grandma in the kitchen

Keira feeding a bottle to her bear

Keira feeding a bottle to her bear

Story time with Grandma

Story time with Grandma

Violet helped make a cake then had fun licking the spoon

Violet helped make a cake then had fun licking the icing off the spoon

We had snow for a few days!

We had snow for a few days! Violet loved it!

The first snowman of the year!

The first snowman of the year!





Hi Friends!

So, we have been sent a surprising but exciting curve ball.

Katrina is pregnant with #3!!

We are hoping for a boy this time but we will be happy with whatever He gives us.  This does change our plans a little bit, we had planned to move to Siberia in January but after a couple months of thought we have decided to move back to Moscow until the baby is born, then move on to Siberia.

We would appreciate your thoughts as we prepare for this new gift!

Thanks for checking out our blog!


We were able to be with Katrina’s family  and some of Micah’s family for Thankgiving this year.  Micah’s dad, step-mom and step-sister drove up to be with us for the Thanksgiving weekend, from Virginia.  It was nice being able to be with them for the holiday this year and enjoy some relaxing days together.  On Thanksgiving day, all of Katrina’s dad’s side of the family, the Renno’s, have a big meal together.  Last year there was barely enough room for everyone in my cousins house, so this year they needed a bigger place.  They ended up holding it at the church we attend in town, which has a lot more room that a normal sized house.  It wasn’t homey feeling like it’s nice to have, but it was a great place to be able for everyone to sit around the table, at one time, and the kids had lots of room to run and play, inside and out.  It was so nice to be in PA this year for Thanksgiving and be able to enjoy family time.

On a different note, we still have not gotten a camera… these pictures were taken by my Dad.  Thanks Dad!

Proud Violet holding her cousin, Afton

Preparing the table

Getting the food ready

Cousins happy to see each other

Micah’s dad Tom and his wife Mischelle enjoying a ride on the tandem bike

Dad and Brent going for a ride

Playing some bball


Getting the food table ready

Giving thanks before the meal

Time to dig in!

Enjoying the yummy food

Enjoying the grandbabies

Burning off some of dinner with a game of Knock Out

Back in PA

Just wanted to let everyone know we are back in PA, we actually have been for about a week now.  Now that our camera is gone, I haven’t been taking pictures, so it doesn’t even come to my mind to update the blog. 

We are looking for a camera right now, so if anyone has any suggestions about which ones are good, I would love to hear them.  I would like something better than a point and shoot, but I don’t want to pay the big bucks either for a really nice big one.  And those nice big ones are just that, big.  What do you think?


Welcome little one

Yesterday we went down to visit my brother and sister-in-law and meet their newest little girl.  She is their 5th child and they named her Afton Grace.  Violet had a fun time holding the baby and playing with all her cousins.  We were very happy to meet our little niece and enjoy the day with family.


Fair week

Last week we attended the Bloomsburg Fair quite a few times, which was one place we missed a lot while we were in Russia.  It’s filled with lots of different things… yummy fair food, games, rides, food, buildings filled with different exhibits, animals, and more food.  Here are some pictures from the week.

Met up with my best friend from high school

Birthday time

On thursday the 20th, our baby turned one year old!  Keira woke up on her birthday not feeling so well with another cold she had caught a couple days before. Thankfully no parties were planned, just a get together with family for some cake.  But after getting dressed the birthday girl started to feel better.

This is how the birthday girl woke up

There’s our happy girl

Violet wanted her hair done like Keira’s hair

Always wanting to stand

…and climb

Silly Violet

It was turning out to be a nice day outside, so I took the girls outside for some pictures.

No hands touching the pumpkin!

Yay! I’m one today!

On friday the 21st, was my (Katrina) birthday.   I turned 28 years old!  Where has the time gone?  Micah planned some things for the day one of which included us going out to eat.  Afterwards we were going to go nearby to see a good friend of mine who we went to the Bible school with and was also in our wedding.  Turns out, Micah called Martha and had her and her husband come to the restaurant to meet us.  It was a great surprise, and it was so good to catch up and to meet her hubby.

Martha and Brian

Saturday, we had some cake for both of us birthday girls at my parent’s house.  There were way too many candles on my cake though!

Getting ready to blow out the candle(s)

Violet helping me blow out my candles

Wow, this is for me?

the birthday girls


This past Saturday Violet and I with Rachel and my mom went to Knoebels one last time before they closed for the year.  We had been given some free passes, so we were happy to use them up!  We spent all afternoon and into the evening there, getting the most out of it as possible.   Violet loves riding the rides there and was so happy to be getting on one right after another.

She was a great driver!

Bouncy house

Found a friend

Rachel and I taking a ride up the mountain on the Sky Lift

The view of the park coming back down

View from the ferris wheel

Violet taking pictures of Rachel

and Mommy

On the train

We got to see some deer this time

Ending the day with an ice cream cone


I’m a bit behind in pictures these days.  These pictures are from all the canning we did at my mom’s house.  Every year my brother and sister-in-law come up to make applesauce, so they make theirs and my moms at the same time.  A few weeks later I helped mom make her chili sauce and pickles too.  It is a lot of work to can, but it yields some great results that can be enjoyed all year long.  It really makes me want to can when we move back to Russia.

So begins the applesauce canning with lots of helpers…

So after the washing and cutting, they get boiled down

Then it gets run through the kitchen aid which strains out the skins

Next it gets sugared and poured into jars

Then into the canner to seal the lids

Delicious finished product

Now on to the chili sauce…


And more cutting

boiling and boiling

Then into the jars they go and that’s about it.

And lastly pickles (which is also the name of their cat, but I’m pretty sure he’s still living)…


I put Violet to work on these


















They get cut and put into jars, then my mom put some spices over top and made a brine and poured that over top. Then off to the canner. It takes a long time to get everything done, but the end product is always so enjoyable.


…the girls are back to normal, almost.  Besides them both having a little bit of a runny nose they are their funny happy little selves.  Especially Keira.  She’s a new baby, just so happy.  I’m so thankful to everyone who was thinking of them this past week.

Before the sickness…

…the girls had lots of fun with their cousins.