Cherry Stoning

One day early in June, we received a surprise package from Austria. Inside was a letter, a family photo, and a cherry stoner.

The letter was from a long-time blog reader. She shared how she found years ago, how our families differed and how they were the same, and how as a family practice physician she now passes on practical information to her patients that she learned from Titus2.

She said when she read our blog post last year about our cherry pitting, she wanted to get us a cherry stoner from Europe, and that’s exactly what she did! She also shared a family favorite cherry recipe that we want to try.

We weren’t given any cherries this year but we bought some from the store to try out our cherry stoner. Wow! What a great, easy way to pit cherries. Thank you, my friend, for your encouragement and for our cherry stoner!

Trusting in Jesus,

“Blessed shall be the fruit of thy body, and the fruit of thy ground,
and the fruit of thy cattle, the increase of thy kine, and the flocks of thy sheep.”
(Deuteronomy 28:4)

Happy Independence Day!

Happy Independence Day!

We can’t forget the extreme sacrifice and bravery our forefathers displayed for us in laying down their lives so that we–the United States of America–could be free from Great Britain and stand alone as our own nation. They gave us independence; they gave us freedom; they gave us liberty. At the greatest cost. Their own lives. Yet that freedom was freedom in a beautiful way. A freedom to live God-fearing lives, honoring our government, obeying the laws of the land, and creating a country we could be proud of. That freedom has restrictions.

In the same way, I’ve been reflecting on our freedom in Christ. Yes, Christ set us free, but it’s not free to live however we want. Galatians 5:13: “For, brethren, ye have been called unto liberty; only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by love serve one another.”

No, it’s the most amazing, beautiful freedom. It’s to be a bondservant in Christ. Mark 8:33: “… Whosoever will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.”

That, my friends, is true liberty.


PS: This is a powerful quote from CH Spurgeon: “We must know that our time is short, and that our life will soon come to an end, and yet we fail to know it practically, for we are not as earnest as dying men ought to be. In this the arch-enemy is not as foolish as we are, for he so well knows that his time is short that he remembers the fact and is motivated by it.

“If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.”
John 8:36

Random Life, Summer in Full Swing

Happy July! Wow. I am shocked at how fast June went. I spent a lot of time writing, and it’s been exciting to see the Lord’s blessing upon this first draft!

My sisters are doing well. Thank you so much for praying! As those of you know who are involved in ministry work, there is often great spiritual warfare. Satan does not want to lose! This last week was super intense for them, but God brought them faithfully through! They have return tickets to come home in two weeks, and we’re excited to see how the Lord will continue to use them, and yes, I confess, anxious for their arrival home.

Soooo, without my sweet sisters and their presence, I thought this Random Life might be harder to pull off. But, again, the Lord brought together all kinds of pictures to give you a peek into Maxwell life.

It was an exciting month, with Jesse buying his house debt-free! Seeing my brother become a home-owner and now his mind turning into all-things-house has been great to see. He’s jumping into a quick remodel, and Dad and brothers have lent some help. You know how Anna and Mary are with these projects, so they’ll be happy to assist when they get home!

Dad and Mom have enjoyed early-morning-long walks before it gets too hot. Summer came very quickly here in Kansas, but we’re grateful for ALL seasons!

Okay, enjoy a peek into the last month.


Christopher and Anna Marie and all five kiddos flew to Washington to visit Anna Marie’s family. What an adorable family!

Whew, what a small crew we are without Anna and Mary. We took a Sunday evening walk in Weston, a state park nearby.

Abigail trapped a raccoon who had been taking her chickens!

This munchkin can ride a real bike now! Super cute.

Jesse signing a paper for his house.

Ha, ha. What it takes for me to write! Even Ellie! 🙂

These two.

Miss Calia loves to “wash” dishes.

When Christopher and Anna Marie were in Washington, they visited a place which holds a lot of memories for them exactly 8 years prior–when they started their courtship!

Jesse working on his house

After one of their long walks.

Loving my writing!

Stopping in with a Father’s Day gift.

This Benji is total cuteness!

Dad keeps our grass mowed! Those yellow leaves have to do with the fact we’ve had an extremely hot June with little rain.

Look where Mr. Arnold decided to go as I was doing laundry. He’s a curious guy.

Nathan took a mini-trip with his girls.

Ellie met the kittens! Pickles (the gray + white one) didn’t like Ellie at all and hissed at her. Tiger, on the other hand, thought she was okay.

Ellie’s kinda used to the bat-at-her-thing from Arnold! 🙂

Cleaning out Jesse’s car on a Saturday.

Joshua’s favorite place in Washington is at the Pike Place Market.

More house stuff.

Taking photos one Friday evening for a local church event.

Miss Elizabeth is really growing up!

Melanie with her two little guys

Dad and Mom stopping in to see Jesse’s progress.

Ellie still takes to being a lap dog.

Making tortillas with my nieces.

Mom with Kyle.

Trying to fill in while Anna and Mary are gone.

Mom was a creative grandma for Aunties’ playtime. She had each of the children write down their favorite game and put it in a basket. Then, they drew a paper and would play whatever game it was.

“The eyes of all wait upon thee;
and thou givest them their meat in due season.
Thou openest thine hand,
and satisfiest the desire of every living thing.”
Psalm 146:15-16