Random Life From Tough Times to Baby Days

So much has happened since our last Random Life. It feels like a lot has changed, and yet things are still the same. But in a way they aren’t.

We shared with you all the news that Anna Marie likely has cancer. How are we dealing with it? We’re grateful we know Who holds all things in His hands. Yes, while what Anna Marie is facing is possibly very serious, none of us are guaranteed another day. I could be in a car accident tomorrow and ushered into the presence of Jesus. We are very prayerful for Anna Marie and being as supportive as we can with their needs while all the time looking to the Lord for what His will is.

January was filled to the brim with work, ministry, helping Christopher and Anna Marie and Joseph and Elissa, and somehow managing to keep up with our personal lives as well. The Maxwell crew has also had their fair share of colds and other similar “bugs,” including John being hit with pneumonia several weeks ago. We’re thankful most are on the mend.

Enjoy a peek into Random Life.

A Nathan Maxwell family outing shopping for Christmas gifts
One evening before Christmas, Anna planned a special Christmas party for we three sisters. It was such a sweet time of being together after crazy schedules. We enjoyed a walk with hot cocoa, and then back at home, Anna made a great peppermint snack mix, and we wrote cards to people we wanted to bless.
Before Bible club one afternoon, Anna and Mary purchased small-dollar items at Walmart that the children could wrap and then give to their moms. It was such a HUGE hit. The kids were very excited to pick something out and then wrap it!
Someone requested to see the caroling card. I meant to post it with the post on it, but I overlooked it.
Preparing Christmas food
December didn’t afford much time for Christmas shopping, but Anna and I took the Friday before Christmas to go. Then, the next step was wrapping. When Betsy heard I hadn’t gotten any wrapping done, she wanted to help that Sunday afternoon.
Mary and Jesse wrapping gifts
Giving out little Christmas gifts at church
Andrew likes to help Grandpa after church
Twelve Days of Christmas workout with Maxwell siblings, a yearly tradition
The three pregnant sisters-in-law on Christmas Eve night (and they even coordinate!): l-r: Anna Marie, Elissa, and Chelsy
Mary giving a Bible story at club
Sunday afternoon
This tradition of making biscuit pizzas actually goes way back to when Nathan was young. He had a little cookbook of recipes, and this must have been one in there. I think we used to make them on Mother’s Day, and now Christopher’s family does at Christmas time.
There Danny is again fascinated with the coffee maker.
This was a cute sight when I was going somewhere. Anna (who gave Betsy running shoes for Christmas) was out on a jog with Betsy and Christina (both of whom had new running skirts on).
Drew and Benjamin enjoyed a fire station tour with Melanie while the girls had their shopping excursion with Grandpa and Grandma.
Yes, Ellie actually rides on a sled.
Speaking of Ellie, here she’s begging to go to Christopher’s backyard to play.
The group who welcomed the New Year in!
TIme to bake!
An edible fruit arrangement thank you gift for Anna
Playtime with Grandma
Mary and Debi
Ruthie and Liddy cleaning the house with Anna and Mary.
One could confidently say lots of babysitting happened!
Card time
Cleaning and organizing at Elissa’s before baby
What a crew!
Anna Marie with her doula as labor was induced
Candlelight vigil after the Roe v. Wade anniversary.
Mom meeting Caleb
Axton turned one!
Nathan with his little helper
Shopping at IKEA
Gigi with Simon Peter.
Anna went to visit her sweet friend, CathyJo, out of state. CJ lost her mom to cancer last month. They were the family I mentioned in the last Random Life post going through heartache and sadness during the Christmas season. Mrs. D no longer experiences the pain of cancer and is with Jesus! We will see her again in Heaven. But there is still that empty gap in their lives.
Mary with Simon Peter
Ellie likes handouts from the littles.
Shrinkwrapping Managers of Their Homes books
I enjoyed baby photo sessions too!

“And he said unto them, It is not for you to know the times
or the seasons, which the Father hath put in his own power”
(Acts 1:7).

Update and Prayer Request for Anna Marie Maxwell

We want to thank you so much for praying for Anna Marie and also give you an update. They are currently working to get the surgery scheduled. As you probably know, pretty much all things medical take time—even when one is trying to work ahead and anticipate delays, etc. It’s looking like they’ll have another consult with a surgeon on Monday and will hopefully come away from that with a surgery date. Please pray that God will confirm His will and lead in this process.


Christopher and Anna Marie Maxwell — a family photo from Simon Peter’s newborn session. We’ll be sharing photos on that later!

“Commit thy works unto the LORD,
and thy thoughts shall be established.”
Proverbs 16:3

Happy 18th Anniversary, Nathan and Melanie!

Nathan and Melanie Maxwell (and Deborah)

Happy 18th Anniversary, Nathan and Melanie (a little belated)!

As maybe most of you know, Nathan is the oldest of the eight. He’s a great big brother, and he and Melanie are such a caring couple. If you’re sick, they’ll be sure to check on you and see if they can get you something. They love our elderly friends, often visiting them after church if they are in rehab. Because Nathan and Melanie give and serve, I’ve noticed their children have the same generous spirit. It’s really beautiful to see. What children see in their parents, they emulate (good or bad!).

Their sweet family grew since their last anniversary as they welcomed Deborah Carol right after Mother’s Day. Little Debi has added quite the sparkle to their lives. From a couple who couldn’t have any children for a number of years, it’s truly a gift to see six beautiful children filling their home.

Happy Anniversary! We love you all!

“Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all
things, endureth all things” (1 Corinthians 13:7).

Sarah’s Birthday Recap

Happy Monday everyone! This last month has been a blur of many things combined, and we’re in much prayer as we walk with Anna Marie and Christopher on this journey. In the midst of things, “normal” life goes on. My birthday was one such event. We had Christopher and Anna Marie’s kiddos since they were in the hospital. The family made the day so special.

I’m grateful for the Lord Jesus Who holds our lives in His Hands. The way He writes our life story is beautiful.


Making one of my favorite meals, pizza, with Danny. The sauce thing was going outside the bounds.
Cheesecake is my go-to birthday dessert! I made a chocolate chip cookie dough cheesecake.
Making coffeecake for the birthday breakfast
Happy times with lots of family around for a birthday lunch
The kids really like the Matchbox cars and can have quite a lot of noise and laughter going on in this area of our home.

“Commit thy way unto the LORD; trust also
in him; and he shall bring it to pass” (Psalm 37:5)

A Saturday Hello

January has come to a close, and we welcome February with the first day of sunshine in a long time! We have a lot to catch you up on, and I hope to do that beginning next week. Thank you for your faithful prayers for Anna Marie. They’re close to scheduling a surgery date, so more on that later. The Maxwell ladies have been juggling child care along with normal work and home responsibilities.

For now, I’ll leave you with some random pictures. Again, thank you for praying.


Ruthie and Ellie after a very slushy walk!
Matchbox cars are a loved item at Grandpa and Grandma’s house
Dad meeting Caleb
Look at Caleb’s little fingernails the day of his birth. Perfect.
Axton on his first birthday! His walking skills are taking off.

“My times are in thy hand…” Psalm 31:15

Answering a Reader’s Question: How the Maxwells Handle Groceries

“How do you handle groceries with all your children now grown. Does everyone put in an amount? Does everyone buy their own, or do the parents pay for it all?” Blog Reader Question 

First, thank you to all those who left comments with blog content suggestions. We’re excited about your ideas.

Steve and I pay for the basic groceries for our family, even now that they are adults. If they want extras that wouldn’t be part of our normal meals, they buy their own. They buy their coffee and coffee supplies and snacks they prefer. Sometimes when they are at the store, they will pick something up that we need. 

We are grateful that the Lord has provided the finances for us to be able to manage our food this way. We know that each one would pitch in with food expenses if that was necessary. We would also likely have a different approach if they weren’t wise in what they did with their money.

For those of you who have adult children living with you, how have you chosen to deal with covering the cost of groceries?

Trusting in Jesus,

“I will bless the LORD at all times: his praise shall
continually be in my mouth” (Psalm 34:1). 

The Maxwell family and ministry blog of Titus2.com.