Announcing Benjamin Steven Maxwell!

It’s with great excitement we share the happy news of Benjamin Steven Maxwell’s safe arrival into the world Tuesday evening, at 9:45 p.m.

More later, but thank you so much for praying! We are delighted he is here, and Mommy and Baby are doing well. No NICU time for Benjamin! He weighed 8 pounds, 14 ounces, and isn’t his dark hair and chubby cheeks so totally adorable?


Benjamin Steven Maxwell

Daddy and Son!
The kiddos got to meet him today!
Mom and Benjamin

“Only be thou strong and very courageous, that thou mayest
observe to do according to all the law, which Moses my servant
commanded thee: turn not from it to the right hand or to the left,
that thou mayest prosper whithersoever thou goest.

Joshua 1:7


When spring blooms in Kansas, I suddenly have a hard time deciding which is my favorite season. Maybe it is spring. The days are just so beautiful.

You know those not-a-cloud-in-the-sky days where the warm sunshine soaks into your skin? Not to mention the variety of your short-sleeve wardrobe (good-bye down coat!), of children giggling and playing, of sinking your toes into the grass, and of gratefulness for the first spring flower.

It’s only February 21st, and spring has come early, and yes, I know winter isn’t truly over, but it might as well be. Good-bye super cold temperatures, and hello spring!


Sweet Calia!
Anna and Calia
Enjoying the nice weather!
The first blooming flower this spring!

“Behold, I will do a new thing;
now it shall spring forth; shall ye not know it?
I will even make a way in the wilderness,
and rivers in the desert.”
Isaiah 43:19

Oh Baby!

Melanie and Sarah

Melanie’s in the home stretch with Baby, and we’re so excited! Today’s doctor’s appointment was great. We covet your prayers for Baby and Melanie as they enter this final stage. We can’t wait to share the news!


“For thou hast possessed my reins:
thou hast covered me in my mother’s womb.”
Psalm 139:13

Paying Ahead or Behind – Vocational Success

Seems like everyone has heard someone bemoaning their school debt. US News reports that the average college grad has more than $35,000 in school loans. That is a lot of money. Young families often struggle greatly under such a burden, and it puts tremendous pressure on a fledgling marriage. What if both husband and wife have loans? Trying to pay behind for “success” might be the greatest obstacle to their being able to attain it.

Now, picture raising your children with the mindset of paying in advance for success. They learn to make the most of their youth years. From twelve on up, they use their time preparing to be skilled adults while making a reasonable income in exchange for their time. This does not mean that they don’t have fun. They just find beneficial ways of having it. Instead of video games, they thrive on the enjoyment that comes from learning. Instead of hanging out with friends, they work out with siblings or dad or mom, which build strength and family relationships.

Soon they will seek the endorphins adult-type achievement brings as opposed to skateboards and amusement park rides. All choices involve a trade. Will they trade up or trade down for the value of their time? Likely, those trades will have great bearing on the value of their future vocational time. What their time is worth to others will directly correlate with how much time they will have available for their future family and serving the Lord.

Pay for success in advance.

“The thoughts of the diligent tend only to plenteousness;
but of every one that is hasty only to want” (Proverbs 21:5).

Making Life Exciting

What can you do to add a little spice to life when you have four children ages four and under? Hide their dessert cookies in the basement, give them flashlights, and let them go on a cookie hunt in the dark.

As you can see they were very successful!

“Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a
bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto
all that are in the house.” Matthew 5:15

Baking with Aunt Mary

Maybe we should rename Aunt Mary the Baking Aunt, as the kids love to bake cookies with her. Mary was babysitting Josh, Ruthie, and Liddy Thursday while Christopher and Anna Marie were out with Daniel for a doctor’s appointment, so what did they decide to do? Yep. You guessed it. Bake cookies.

So what’s our favorite go-to chocolate chip cookie recipe? Actually, it’s now in the revised Managers of Their Homes book. Totally the best. But I’ll share it with you here in case you don’t have the book.

The Best Chocolate Chip Cookie

Yields: 20-22 cookies

3/4 cup butter (room temperature)
1 1/4 cups firmly packed light brown sugar
2 tablespoons milk
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 large egg (room temperature)
2 cups plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips

Heat oven to 350°. Beat room temperature butter for 1 min. Then add brown sugar and cream with butter till light and fluffy. Then add milk, and vanilla. Beat at medium speed until well blended. Beat in egg. Combine flour, salt, and baking soda in a separate bowl and then mix into butter-sugar mixture until just blended. Stir in chocolate chips. Drop dough by spoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheets.

Bake 7-12 minutes until desired doneness. Cool on cookie sheets for 2 minutes before removing to cooling racks. Enjoy!

“My meditation of him shall be sweet:
I will be glad in the LORD.”
Psalm 104:34

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