Saturday in Pictures

Saturday was a “work on Joseph’s house day”! Because of the quantity of items to be thrown away, Joseph rented a dumpster. By Saturday evening, the dumpster was full: carpet, doors and door frames, toilets, bathtub, shower, ceilings from the dining room and kitchen, partial walls, the back porch, and more were piled into the 40-yard container.

It is exciting to see Joseph’s house take a different twist, although it definitely is in its roughest shape until the rebuilding part begins. Out with the old and in with the new! Reminds me of a spiritual analogy. As we rid our lives of sin and repent, the Lord cleanses our heart. Removing sin isn’t easy, just like demolition. In fact, it can be a messy job, as sometimes it requires going back to individuals we have wronged and asking forgiveness. Rebuilding, which is like cleansing from sin, takes work. It takes effort. “Therefore I will judge you, O house of Israel, every one according to his ways, saith the Lord GOD. Repent, and turn yourselves from all your transgressions; so iniquity shall not be your ruin.” (Ezekiel 18:30)

The girls scraped ceilings.
The girls scraped ceilings.

John demolishing the porch
John demolishing the porch

John tore down the porch. It was quite the job. Although at first glance, one might have thought the porch was fine, it wasn’t. The wood was rotted and falling apart–too much to bother trying to repair.

The guys put up a temporary beam to support the ceiling. If you look at the last picture, you'll see they took it down.
The guys put up a temporary beam to support the ceiling. If you look at the last picture, you’ll see they took it down.

The living room
The living room


Dad and John taking a brief break.
Dad and John taking a brief break.


Jesse tore out the master bath.
Jesse tore out the master bath.

Dad tore out the half wall between the stairs and the living room to open it up.
Dad tore out the half wall between the stairs and the living room to open it up.

It took John all morning to tear the porch down.
It took John all morning to tear the porch down.

The girls made a great team, and despite the heat, they perservered.
The girls made a great team, and despite the heat, they perservered.

To open up the kitchen, Dad tore out the wall between the dining room and kitchen. Joseph tore out the dining room ceiling as it was built rather strange.

The header comes down!
The header comes down!

Anna and Mary
Anna and Mary


Mixed into the day, Christopher and I worked on two photo sessions with Joshua. He slept most of the time, so that made it nice. Isn’t he adorable?



Back to the work scene:

John and Jesse hauled the porch, piece by piece to the dumpster.
John and Jesse hauled the porch, piece by piece to the dumpster.

Anna tore the sheetrock off the east wall so two windows can be added.
Anna tore the sheetrock off the east wall so two windows can be added.

Mary peeled and scraped the wallpaper.
Mary peeled and scraped the wallpaper.

Break time!
Break time!

It was a warm day, and since the guys had taken the ceiling out in the dining room, the attic heat seeped into the house, and it would have been no use to turn on air conditioning.

The demolition progress looked like tornado aftermath. Dust masks and gloves were a necessary item.
The demolition progress looked like tornado aftermath. Dust masks and gloves were a necessary item.

Anna pulled up tac strips left behind after carpet removal.
Anna pulled up tac strips left behind after carpet removal.

Near the end of the day, Joseph cut part of the living room wall to open up the dining room a bit more.

Thank you all for your enthusiasm. Even though we haven’t met many of you in person, your support and love for our family is an encouragement.

PS – No news on Melanie. She is now 39 weeks and her due date is Friday.

A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit
will I put within you: and I will take away the stony
heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh.

–Ezekiel 36:26

43 thoughts on “Saturday in Pictures”

  1. That is so amazing to be able to turn a old house into something amazing! And DEBT FREE!!! Wish my family could do that, but unfortunately we don’t have other family to help us like yours.

  2. Having just renovated a house ourselves in the last few years, I know what kind of work goes into the effort. What a blessing to have a whole family work on the project together! Good luck and congratulations to Joseph!

    PS Joshua is ADORABLE! πŸ™‚

  3. Whoa! What a day! You certainly got a lot accomplished. That was quite a job! This is another area of skill that you all have worked hard at and Joseph’s house is a project the Lord’s been preparing you for. Get some rest too.

    I really like the first picture of Christopher and Joshua. And the one of him in Daddy’s hands. He looks so handsome when he sleeps. He is adorable.

    Praying for Melanie and baby. Hope the baby is born soon. Can’t wait to see Abby and Bethany with their new little sibling.

    Hope the Moody book projects have been going well too.

    God bless! Rebecca K.

  4. Thank you for sharing the pictures of your work. It is so much fun to watch the progression. All the possibilities are so exciting! He blesses and blesses again.

  5. Wonderful work! I just wish we could come and help you, but it is too long a trip from France to your place! Your enthusiasm is beautiful, one can see the joy of the Lord being your strength!
    Joshua is such a sweet baby, and the pictures of him are just beautiful. Praise God for a healthy baby. Your family are in my prayers, especially Melanie, for a safe delivery and a healthy and happy little one.
    You are such a beautiful family and an encouragement for other families. May our Father in heaven richly bless each one of you, and may He guide you always closer to His will for your lives. Love, Elisabeth

  6. WOW – what a difference already. It is going to have such a nice look all opened up like that.

    Love the photos – Joshua looks so peaceful and content.

    Thanks for sharing.

  7. Two of my favorite things to hear regarding home remodeling: opening up walls and installing more windows!! Natural light does wonders for a house and for the people in it! I cannot wait to see what Joseph has planned and the final result.

    In Christ,


  8. What exciting family times!! May the Lord continue to abundantly bless your kingdom work!

    Praying for you dear Maxwells!

    Psalm 92

  9. Wow!! That is some amazing work….you all are such an insipiring family to so many in the way you all pitch together and help one another out. It is a beautiful thing to witness.

    I am SO happy for you Joseph and I know your whole family shares in that happiness with you.

    Thank you so much for the sweet pictures of little Joshua….we always love seeing those pictures instead of the family working much better….always jump in with those! Just teasing…we love all the pictures of the family but little ones are so precious.

    God Bless to you all,
    Wendy B.

  10. Thanks so much for the pics. Keep ’em coming. It’s such a delight to follow the process. What a great showcase for the construction business.

  11. How exciting to be diving into remodeling his own home, and to have all the love and support from his family in doing so. Can’t wait to see what he redoes with the house.

    Blessings, Mrs. Mari

  12. Wow! You are all such hard workers! You accomplished a lot in only 3 days!

    Joshua is to cute for words! Love picture of C and J!

    God bless you.

  13. It’s amazing how much was accomplished in one day! Thanks for sharing the updates! Also, I love the pictures of little Joshua! He’s such a beautiful baby! πŸ™‚


  14. Uffda, you did A LOT of work in one day!! If I ever buy another house (not likely) I will hire team Maxwell. And if the heat there was like the heat here I don’t know how you did it. Can’t wait to see the after photos.

    I love the 2nd photo of Joshua asleep the best. He looks like he did all the renovating work and needed a sleep break!

  15. It is so wonderful to see your whole family working together! Even though the work looks hard and hot-everyone is joyful still. What a blessing!

    That baby Joshua is so beautiful. I’m not sure I’ve ever seen a happier daddy!

    Praying for Melanie as well. Their new little one will be here very soon. Thank you Lord for allowing Melanie to carry this baby to term. What a gift!

    As always your family is an encouragement and a blessing. Reading this blog is so uplifting and never fails to point me back to Jesus. Thank you so much!

  16. I love that I was scrolling through the pictures of the house being torn apart and all of a sudden there was the picture of Joshua looking so very cute! Made me laugh. (Only 5 ish weeks till I get to meet my newest baby, so seeing Joshua made me very excited and a tiny bit impatient).
    I am so impressed at the way you all work together. I really hope and pray my husband and I can grow a family a bit like yours. My eldest is only 8 so we are at the beginning of this journey.
    Thank you for showing me that the sort of family I dream of having is possible. There are so many out there who tell me my dreams are unrealistic. It is good to know of other families who are doing there best to live and work together, even if there are far away (I am in the UK).
    ps- Praying for Melanie and the safe delivery of their baby.

  17. It is SO refreshing to see all you ladies wearing skirts no matter what you are doing! I don’t always comment here, but I do read often and APPRECIATE your modesty and standards. Thank you for being such a breath of fresh air in these last days of immorality and lack of modesty!

  18. That is great that Joseph got his house when there is no rush to marry anyone and he can now take his time to carefully thing about what to add or what to take away from the house and what changes he wants to make to his baby. That way by the end of the remodeling job he will end up with a house that is exactly what he would want to raise a family in and will be useful for many years to come. Also it would be fun for all the Maxwell girls and ladies to put their talents to work and even provide homemade curtains and other linens that it is possible to make. There does not seem to be much selection in the way of what I consider attractive window coverings out on the market today so it would be fun to see some homemade window coverings for this soon to be lovely house.

  19. Here’s a tip: to remove wallpaper, fill a spray bottle with about 1/4cup of laundry detergent and warm water. Spray wallpaper wait a few minutes and remove with scraper. Also cute baby pics.
    Thank you

  20. I can’t believe you did all that in just one day — wow! And I guess you all have done some house projects before so aren’t shy to just jump in and get it done! And your family always looks so happy to be working together — no grumbling! Thanks for the photos — I will look forward to seeing before/after comparisons. And that Joshua is one cute baby!

  21. So amazing to see all that you were able to accomplish in just a day!
    The baby pictures are precious.
    I’m so glad that Melanie and baby are getting close. I delivered all of our children early. We lost our third (second daughter) because she arrived at 20 weeks gestation. Our fourth I was on bedrest a lot, but our fifth surprised us all by arriving just 5 days from her due date. The longest I had carried any of our children.
    I’ll continue to pray for Melanie and baby and watch for updates.

  22. As we were all working outside Saturday, together as a family (it is planting season here), I was reflecting how grateful I am that one of the things the Lord lead you to encourage others in is being a family that sticks together. No organized sports to separate you on a daily basis, but choosing things to do that you can do as a family. This was a valuable lesson for us many years ago. My husband and I will always be appreciative of your ministry. The Lord has used you in mighty ways in our life! And with a post like this one you continue to encourage others to an awesome way of life!! Thank you.
    Ok – those photos of Joshua – well there just aren’t words. Too, too sweet! Oh, I bet you all are having fun!!!
    People think buying houses debt free isn’t possible for most everyone, but the track you are on, it is possible. Enjoy working together and your children will learn to be profitable with their time. They’ll have their houses too.

  23. My goodness that is quite a project to be undertook. Looks like it will keep everyone busy for several months. Do you have a projected done date, or will it be open ended? When we remodeled our home, the front bedrooms were pushed out to where the patio had been, a wall taken down to make a breakfast bar, and the kitchen doubled in size. I kept getting updates from my family ( I was studying in France at the time) and I was amazed at all the work that was done when I returned home.

    The baby pictures are adorable. If word got out how good Sarah is with them, she could pick up a few side jobs with photos of newborns. People love good photographs.
    Joseph would like it finished by the end of summer before our fall trip.

  24. Amazing, family team work! Very inspiring!! Gives us hope that all the chores that are daily done now, in our children’s younger years, can and prayerfully will be sowing seeds that will last a lifetime of hard work, service and helps! Thanks team Maxwell!!

  25. Wow! I love how you can all get a job done quickly. I didn’t realise
    Joseph wanted to start this now- but then again i would too.
    I can’t wait for next week you would all be finished.;-)
    Best wishes joseph.
    Joshua looks so cute in the basket.
    It would be great if all your blog readers could meet, but
    just know we all love following your family and pray for your
    growth in all God has for The Maxwells.

    Where is the next trip to after Summer?
    Here is the latest on our fall schedule.

  26. He’ll be finished by the end of summer? Wow! I love that you have a plan since it has been my experience that these big projects can go on and on and on (but you guys know how to schedule and stick to it!). When I had my house re-sided, a project that was only projected to last 2 weeks including the new paint, I had a big green dumpster in my driveway for 6 weeks (and I had a newborn, and siding is a very loud activity — ugh!). The two men working on the project kept getting into arguments so sometimes only one of them would show up to do the work, which is why it took so long. It was frustrating. So, I guess my point is that it is so good to see your family doing this together and everyone seems to have special skills to help. I just came back to look at the demolition photos again — it is amazing what you accomplished in one day. Now the fun part begins — making that home his own!

  27. Dear Maxwell Family,

    Thanks for posting the house renovation pictures. Thank God you have a large family to help with this project!

    As for the baby pictures, Joshua is the most beautiful baby boy I have ever seen. What a precious blessing from our gracious God!

    We look forward to seeing you all in a couple of weekends at the SEARCH HS conference!

    With love and prayers from NJ

    The K Family

  28. oh little Joshua is Sooooooooooo cute! cant wait to see baby number 2 come along too!

    the house looks good! carry on with the good work and photographs!

    God bless

  29. Don’t you just love demolition?! My husband is a guts-and-glory sort of man who loves electrical and plumbing repairs but looks askance at finicky finish work; I think I’ve developed that way over the years! Though really, nesting is fun, too. I think there should be a little kiosk with chairs and lemonade, right in the store in front of the paint chips. Again, hats off to Joseph and all the “pitcher-inners.” Thanks for sharing snippets of your work day! Love from NH.

  30. Congratulations! May I ask a question? I admire how your family schedules things in. Our family is good about but sometimes I battle getting into a spontaneous project. With the house being just bought this week and even known about this week, how was such a huge project so suddenly scheduled in? Was it that your schedule just happened to be open or were things pushed aside? It seems so big to be able to jump so suddenly in so would love to hear how that was scheduled in. Thanks and God bless.
    Schedules are very freeing. Because of our schedule, we can slip one-time events in easy, because we are caught up in other areas. This is a big project so we make a slight shift in the evening schedule to pick up house project time and Saturdays are always project days and so we just move to this project versus other ones. The long answer from a guy’s point of view is Redeeming the Time. We would also recommend Managers of Their Homes and Preparing Sons.

  31. Sarah, I like your analogy – its so true! The pictures remind me of our renovation project on our own house. There was a time where all we were doing was tearing down. Now we are in the midst of rebuilding. I know what it is all about – lots of work, but also a great time for building relationships! Your family is a great encouragement to us.

    The pictures of baby Joshua are so adorable!

    May the Lord bless your family,
    Samantha ~ Québec

  32. I got to thinking last night….Does the family that you bought the home from know you all and that you have a website? If so, how neat would that be to see your house totally gutted and redone! Then again, they would probably wished they had hired you all instead of selling once they see the end result! πŸ™‚

    However, just going to your site would hopefully be a spiritual transformation for them.

    Love & Blessings to all…..we look forward to hearing about another wonderful and God filled birth soon.

    Wendy B.
    We don’t know them and it was empty for awhile.

  33. What a huge task, but how wonderful the family is pitching in to help Joseph. Thank you so much for sharing these work-in-progress photos! πŸ™‚ And I echo what others have said about Baby Joshua—what a precious doll! When I showed my middle daughter Rebecca (24) the photos of Joshua, she squealed with delight! (Lord willing, she and her husband will be parents one day). ~ Thank you again for taking time to share updates with us, and for being such a wonderful inspiration.
    Love, Patti M. πŸ™‚
    P.S. I am actually on a family vacation at the moment, but am still keeping up with the Maxwell family activities–I truly feel you all are “long-distance friends”! πŸ™‚

  34. Thank you for your response to my question above. Yes, those books have blessed our family. My husband has page marked most of the Redeeming the Time book and refers to it often. I was impressed with the projects speed in beginning, but truly when the Lord provides, He also does it in the right time. Amazing!

  35. Congratulations! So many exciting news in your family lately…babies and a new house! I am impressed that Joseph bought a house debt-free…and am interested to hear how it went for Nathan and Christopher as well, as you mentioned it was a different story for all of them. Maybe you have shared those stories earlier?
    One thing that immediately came to my mind is that as a woman, our house, our home is a very important place for me. I would like to be part of choosing the home I will love and that will work for our family. I am not criticizing your sons choices (as I said, I am impressed) but as they bought houses as bachelors…I just am curious. Will he wait to decide on wall colors? Appliances? Or just choosing everything as he sees the best? Looking forward to seeing the house progress!

  36. Just discovered your website…there is so much to take in and learn from! Now to get my husband on board to teach our sons home renovation skills.
    How far away from the main family house is Joesph’s house? Living alone after living in a house with a large family would be a huge adjustment. Does he know how to prepare meals?…if he’s like my nephews, he “visits” at strategically planned times of day…LOL
    He’s still living here at home.

  37. I’m surprised Joseph is still living at home, isn’t he close to 30 yrs old. I hope this is not a rude question, but why? I’m trying to understand your beliefs.
    Hi Pat,

    Actually he is in the lower twenties. We love him and he loves us. We have a great time together. We mutually treasure our time so until God gives a wife why move out? As soon as God gives him a wife, he will be moving out.

  38. Our homeschooling journey also began in the early 80’s with the first of our seven children (5 graduated and 2 to go!). We are also close-knit relationally – love that about home educating, don’t you? Anyway, we are always encouraged to find other “old timers” and witness the blessings God has bestowed upon their families as they have grown. Sometimes our children wonder if there are very many other young adults (in their 20s and 30s) remaining with the desire to honor the Lord and “be in the world, but not of it”. I am SO grateful this desire is still alive and well among Christian home schooling families. God bless you all.

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