Friday, July 30, 2010


BJ has a grandpa and he is mine too. I am so lucky to have him.....we are so lucky to have along with the rest of our family.

He is a man with much wisdom, strength, confidence, and most of all love. You don't get to greet Grandpa without a hug and you don't usually leave him without one either. He is everyone of his grandkids biggest fans and this includes me and anyone else who is lucky enough to be married in.

We have a history you know, he is the one behind Brian and I dating again and the one who told us we might as well just get married its inevitable. He tells me all the time how lucky BJ is to have me and then finishes with and you are awful lucky to have BJ as well. I know this, beyond reason. I also know that with BJ came a whole slew of family, family that sticks together through the good and bad, family that is always there when you need them, I can name a number of occasions when we felt so alone and had a knock on the door or a kind word from an aunt, uncle or grandpa himself.

Now next to Grandpa you can almost be guaranteed to see Grandma and behind them and in front of them is a that can be seen, one that can be attested to, one to be proud of and thankful to God for. No we are not perfect, and I am pretty sure none of us would claim to be but we have one thing in common and one thing you will hear Grandpa and Grandma claim for each of us and that is a love for Jesus our Saviour and God our Father in Heaven.

I got to watch Grandpa be a part of something tonight along with much of his family...the musical review in celebration of Lynden Christians 100th year celebration. You see it is pretty much tradition to be involved in the musical program at LC if you have VanderPol in your blood. And it is pretty much tradition to sing at every large family gathering especially Christmas if you are part of the VanderPol Family. So to see so many members of the family on the stage with Grandpa was not a huge surprise. What a gift to be able to watch him do something he loves surrounded by the people he loves. What a gift to see his children look at him with love and admiration and I am sure many memories in their eyes. It left tears in mine. I am glad I got to see it, I am glad my children got to see it. I am glad my husband was able to be a part of it alongside one of the people he loves and looks up to the most...his Grandpa.

I could go on and on...but mostly I just want to say thank you Grandpa for being you and caring on so many traditions that will be carried on for many years to come. We blessed far beyond these words!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

We had a day...

Better get used to my sappy posts because for some reason I am in an overly sappy mood lately and I could not be more in love and overwhelmed with life right now.

Life is speeding past lately it feels like a whirlwind....we are always going here or there with not much time to sit and watch.

Being a working mom is different it is the hardest combined title I have ever held. It is a decision I made on my own, one I take complete responsibility for and I really believe that it was all in God's plan to happen right now. I love my job outside of the house...I am not one that can do anything unless I absolutely love it, I have to be passionate about everything I do or I will drop it, its just who I am... An all or nothing type of girl. My job came about at a time when I needed a distraction from reality and a time where my current chapter is closing and new one is about to begin. If I were in charge the chapter would have taken more time. I would have started the new one on September 2nd precisely after school started, but sometimes God opens a window and when you don't go through on your own he pushes you through it and I believe that is what happened to me.

A working mom (first of all let me say I believe we are all working moms, being a stay at home mom is the hardest job in the entire world not one I take or look at lightly) takes a lot of guff from a lot of people. People look at you differently, they make odd comments for example, are you sure this is working out instead of saying what they really feel you should be at home with the family. And speaking for every working mother out their or at least most of them, I think of my kids all the time when I am away and I miss them terribly. But I know they are in good hands and as long as they seem happy and healthy we can keep it this way. The good news is Brian and I have always made it our goal to not strap ourselves financially in a way that makes it so that I have to work, so I can quit any old time I please. But I am not pleased yet and I am happy and so are my kids and my husband as well. We are all happy!

Today though I had a business meeting, now I could of gotten a babysitter, however I risked my life and my reputation on hauling my beautiful children with me. I was nervous and prayed most of the way to Lake Samish for them and their behavior. And I am happy to report that they were complete angels. They were quiet and pleasant and amazing. The client who is a fancy client (blogpost about fancy clients later)and one that I knew wouldn't be happy with disobedience, praised me over my sweet angelic children, thanked me for the meeting handed over her prized recipes of jello salad and a chocolate rendition of poke cake and sent me on my way. I cried on the way to the freeway and not because I was upset because I was so proud of my kids. So I in turn praised them and told them how proud I was and Elliots reply was classic,"Mom it sounds like you are going to make some delicious food, will you please bring home some jello salad for me?" Oh great now I have to explain that mommy does not get paid to make jello salad unless its for fancy clients. Sounds like an oxymoron right.? Like I said more about fancy clients later.

I guess the answer to the age old question....Can a woman really have it all? Can she be a mom, a wife and be successful in a work environment all at the same time. Can she juggle it all? I am juggling most of time and sometimes a ball gets dropped but we just pick up the ball and keep juggling. I am pretty sure I have it all right now and God is at the reigns steering me left or right. Where the next stop is I have no idea but I am holding on for the ride.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Theres this wonderful place....

its called home.

After a 70 hour work week i was ready to back in this place called home. It is where I wanted to be nearly all week. I missed my kids I missed my hubby I missed my dog.

Home is a wonderful place. Its warm, its smells like its supposed to, there is always plenty to do and plenty to ignore in order to pay attention to things that really matter, there are always kids that need hugs and if my kids get tired of it there are always neighbor kids finding their way into my back yard and they are always game for hugs, there are flowers, there are projects, I love this place.

On Sunday we enjoyed each other we enjoyed our home. We rode bikes and went down trails that had jumps and I forgot for a second that I was 28 and instead went back to being 12 for an hour as I flew over dirt mounds and peeled out in the was fun, my son was impressed we laughed and giggled and enjoyed being a family of four. We spent the evening watering flower beds and then took turns throwing each other in the pool fully clothed I may add. It was heaven. I went to bed that night with a smile on my face and happiness in my heart it was a wonderful day spent in a wonderful place called home.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Its My Birthday.....Tomorrow.

So I am turning another year older. I am not really a freak out because I am turning a year older type of girl, so its no big thing. I really feel like getting older is a blessing, I mean I would never want to be 15 again and for more than one reason. Age brings wisdom and experience and perspective which are all extremely beautiful things. Growing older also bring wrinkles and recognition of gravity and bits of gray here and there which in my opinion are also very beautiful. If I could choose to be 28 forever and everything would stay the way it is right now or choose to grow older and take all of the signs of aging with it just to be able to see what else God has in store for me I would choose the latter no questions asked.

I have much to be thankful for over the last year much has changed, blessings have been continually poured out and God continues to surprise me daily. I have had a happy, healthy, successful and very full year. I think this past year I have grown more individually in reflection of me through Gods doing than any year in the recent past. He has taken time to work on the root of ME which has been challenging but also very satisfying and wonderful.

So here's to another year. I will spend it catering a 15 hour day and then enjoy a late dinner with my friends and my wonderful husband. I will also spend it being thankful for all that I have and be anxious to see what the next year has in store.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Underwear.....If you are a man you need not read any further.

First off I will let you know that you can consider this a public service announcement. And much of the post that follows stems from the fact that I spend much time catering weddings and other swanky parties that require women to dress up in outfits that they wouldn't wear elsewhere which means they most likely do not have the proper undergarments to go with the outfit which leads to some very unfortunate event.

I think these events are caused by 1 or all of the following things, either they are totally clueless, forgot to consult their wingman (spouse, friend, sister, or the like) before leaving their home, or they were taking a risk in wearing the outfit in the first place and were ditched by their wingman and left to fend for themselves. This all seems confusing but I will clear it up.

UNDERWEAR IS NOT OPTIONAL IT IS A REQUIREMENT. Whoever may have told you that going without from time to time is acceptable was crazy. The next offense having to do with your undergarments are underwear that is constantly showing because you chose the wrong pair....this is tacky and sometimes offensive. I can't take seeing another thong hanging out of the back of someones pants when they go to pick up something they dropped or worse yet to pick up their toddler.

So here are some guidelines and maybe some tips on making sure you do not offend someone with sight of your unmentionables.

#1 - Make sure when you risk wearing that ultra short dress to attend a wedding with your husband or date, that you do the reach up in the air test. This involves a mirror and your arms. Put the dress on, stand in front of a mirror and reach yours arms up in the air. If you can see your panties or anything else that you don't want to show off you are golden go for it just act like a lady please in your ultra short dress...cross your legs or ankles at least and remember to handle yourself as if your grandmother was sitting next to you.

#2 - Thongs - Now we live in a time period where the fashion world has come up with all sorts of styles and fads that require all sorts of undergarments. Thongs I suppose are one of them and they do have their place and need at certain times. However no one wants to see yours either hanging out of the back of your pants or through your see through nearly sheer white pants that you were trying to avoid having a panty line with. To address the thong first, if you feel the need to wear a thong please do the squat test....get dressed and squat down...reach your hand to the small of your back if you can feel your thong before your pants that is bad news..choose a different pair...if you feel your bum before your waistband that is a totally different problem that would take a totally different post to solve. Next see through pants or skirts with thongs. Now we all have our favorite pair of white pants possible even a skirt. To go along with this I know many of you have worked in the medical field and one of the first things you learn is to wear nude panties with white scrubs. This is an easy tip that can stretch to all areas of your closet. Nude panties are a great thing to have and can save you from the rest of the world noticing your underpants or worse yet your bum. So invest in a nice pair of seamless nude shaded panties and you will be oh so happy.

#3 - Slips- Now many of you may think slips left us in the 80's but in my opinion they are a much needed piece of your wardrobe that probably has disappeared. The fact of the matter is in certain outdoor circumstances dresses that were completely fine indoors are now suddenly see through, however if you were wearing a slip all your problems would be solved.

#4 - Choose one- Now I on occasion want to wear a dress usually on a date that is something I would never wear when caring for my children. It could be so for a number of reasons, maybe its a bit short, maybe its a bit low cut making any type of bending over scandalous. This is all fine in the right environment however I have found that choosing either the short or low cut not both or you will be tuggin at both ends all night which starts to look like a circus act after awhile.

#5 - Don't drink to much.........this is just a guideline and a great little tip. Most all unfortunate events can be avoided if you avoid making constant trips back and forth to the open bar.

I am truly not obsessed with this topic but as I stated above because of my work environment I am constantly being bombarded with these offenses on a nearly daily basis. I could share tons of horror stores pertaining to this topic alone. So bottom line I don't really care about your undergarments however no one wants to see them.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

We're Back.............

On Sunday we came home from our summer vacation. We love to camp and this year we did that very thing at the Winthrop KOA. Let me tell you at first I was very negative Nellie about staying at the KOA...I somewhat like roughing I grew up tent camping in state parks that are clean but leave a lot to be desired, however that is what camping is all about. However, I left the KOA with a new appreciation for the place, there is something to be said for warm clean showers, a clean pool and nice gravel paths for my kids to ride their bikes on free of weirdos and the like.

So thats right we just came back from camping where blocks of ice are worth their weight in gold, walking to the pool or riding your bike to the office for an otter pop are you forms of exercise and you can pass an hour or so trying to patch your air mattress in the afternoons. It was a fabulous time of doing nothing all together fabulous but everything fun. We made a trip to town everyday for a sno-cone or ice cream in the middle of the afternoon to escape the hottest part of the day, this was the highlight.

On Friday Sarah and Justin came for the weekend and they came with new toys and excitement to get us through the weekend which was much appreciated and anticipated. With them we shared the norm with good friends, good food and good times.

By Thursday I was getting antsy to cook something so I went to the store and bought a small roast and a local fruit stand for some peaches. I marinated the beer over night with a bottle of beer and some dried italian seasoning and the following day I cooked it with some roast fixings in our fire pit. For dessert I made a biscuit topped peach cobbler that cooked over the fire pit in a heavy frying pan. We ate well that night and the cooking bug went away:) I will totally come up with some more of these ideas for next time we go because it took little effort and the outcome was delicious:)

This was pretty much our favorite hang out every afternoon. ice cream or sno-cone? Whats your pleasure?
So you will get tired of seeing me in this hat by the end of the picture series. I have made a pledge to quit continually burning my nose in the sun every summer all summer long, After 28 years I think it needs a break and sunscreen doesn't do the trick anymore but a hat sure does.
My water baby..all she needs is a swimsuit, a snack and some sand and the girl is happy all afternoon. Thats my kind of girl:)
Pretty sure this butterfly was dying on the beach..don't tell Elliot he thought it wanted to be friends.
Marshmallows in daylight because betimes are still important when camping...I wish someone would have given our neighbors the memo.
Our beautiful campsite with an amazing willow right in the middle. Providing amazing shade in the hot afternoon.
Another friend a caterpillar. I think they were calling him Slinky.
He melts me.
This balloon went over us two mornings in a row.
Sno Cones again....
Uncle Justin being a good sport during the kids impromptu photo session that included I am not kidding 27 pictures of them tormenting him. Another reason why I am convinced that Justin will make an amazing dad someday.
Auntie Sarah brought lots of fun finger paints with her and gave Grace a manicure. Lots of neon brights.
The kids shared their own tent for the first time this year. They had a lot of fun and played cards in the mornings before coming out for breakfast. They now have secret plans and tricks up their out world!
We rented recumbant bikes one afternoon.
Both the kids had fun...although I think Graces legs needed to be just bit longer for full enjoyment.
THe most cooperative picture I have of them in a long time.
And as close as we are going to get to a nice family photo.

We had lots of fun, made lots of memories, and are thankful that God made us a little family. I can't wait until our next vacation but will remember this one forever!

Sunday, July 4, 2010

My Gracie Girl Turned 5....

I can't believe baby is five years old. Its exhilarating and excruciating all at the same time. Its always funny to me how you can actually watch them grow a year older in the weeks leading up to their birthdays. Their language changes, their abilities grow and their view of the world gets a little bit bigger.

I love having a little girl! She is my partner in crime and my team mate in all things.
She chose to get a pedicure for her birthday this year and as superficial as a pedicure may be we had a wonderful time. Just a girl and her mom enjoying being girls and loving up on each other. I wish I would have taken pictures of her getting the pedicure the pumice stone scrub through over the edge and the air was filled with precious giggles from my beautiful 5 year old girl. After that we shared lunch and a milk shake at Colophon Cafe. I asked her over lunch what she thought about being five and her reply was, "So far its pretty great!"

The things about Grace that remain the same from year to year are her need to be Grace, an individual, not one who conforms to what anyone else wants at this point. She is not my people always know where you stand. She is never luke warm always hot or cold. She is beautiful and cheerful and just an absolute perfect part of our family. Brian jokes that she is just like me and I suppose he is right in a lot of ways. Although I wish I could have been more like her as a child, so confident and sure.

This year she was awarded the most cheerful dancer award at the end of the ballet season. And this is a great way to describe her. Cheerful, she is for the most part easy going laid back and ready for the next shenanigan at all times.

I love you my Gracer Girl!! You are beautiful in more ways than one and I can't wait to see what God has in store for you!