Here we go…


Richard’s brother asked how many takes this took to make this video.

Let me tell you—one.  The only one.  I mean, really?  How in the world can you duplicate that?  It was perfect in all timing.

Here I was walking the dogs when I found a fox hole.  And then I called and had my daughter come out.  And then we called and had daddy and Max come out.

And then we decided that Adelyne (because she is normally crazy) would have a bunch of fun dancing to the music in front of the fox hole.  And so we played the music.

Well, Adelyne decided she really wanted the dogs to dance with her.  And, surprisingly???? the dogs were not interested.  So, while she spent her time chasing the dogs, daddy is in the background going crazy with his son to the music.

It is and will be a family classic for keeps.  Now, whose wedding will it play at?  Maxwell’s (in daddy’s arms)?  Adelyne’s (running after the dogs)?  Or perhaps simply at Richard’s birthday or our 50 year anniversary????

In any case, it was fun to make but WAY more fun to watch!




JoJo Dirty Face…Obviously Daddy is in charge!

My husband has one day off a week—and it’s not the weekend. Which should be obvious if you know that he is a pastor.

If you did not know that he was a pastor, now you do.

So his one day off a week is during the week. It is now on Tuesdays.

On Tuesdays, I, however, am not at home. I am an hour away teaching Bible in Poznan. Therefore, on my husband’s one real day off a week, I leave him all alone with the kids.

He LOVES it!

Not that I leave him alone. Although…Now that I think about it…Hmmm???


Just kidding.

He loves his day with the kids.

And, on his day off, he REALLY tries to focus just on his kids. They play, they jump on the trampoline, they swing.

He takes them to the park.

Or he simply holds them and makes dinner.

In fact, I just walked through the door, and he is upstairs bathing them right now.

I think, if he was here next to me, he may say that Tuesdays are his favorite day. A day where he gets to invest in the lives of his children in an awesome and personal way—by PLAY!

You know that the kids are ALWAYS happy when daddy is in charge.

How do I know?

I’ll let this photo that Richard sent me of Josephine speak for all 3 (Ada, Max, and Jo).  It says, “Daddy is the best!”


“Now, stop taking photos of me, Daddy, and come back to play.”

Happy, Happy Tuesday, our friends!  Take the time to stop and play with your kids.

It’s the one thing you will NEVER regret.

The Return of GoGo Baby and her Momma…

Last year I shared a photo when my husband returned after a month of travels to Africa. It was of my daughter and son—and my son simply laid his head on my husband’s lap, in awe of his daddy and his closeness and presence.

Sometimes as the mom, since we are typically the “No” parent, we wonder how our presence is felt when we are not there or what our homecoming would be like.

After all, Daddy is always “So Much Fun!” and the “Tickle Fight King!” And the list goes on…

Me, as Mommy—Well, I am the do your homework, clean your room, brush your teeth—EXCUSE ME?! lady.

Yet. Just yet…They must have missed me quite a bit these past two weeks when I went to America to help my mommy out (she broke her shoulder and had emergency surgery) because I got a glorious homecoming from the one that made me a momma and the other that fought with his entire being to live (and live he did thanks to the Grace of God and your prayers around the world)…

And Daddy got his baby back. His final baby. She was tired and in shock. And just as cuddly as could be. She is her daddy’s girl—although in the photo, you may wonder 😉 Chalk it up to jet travels. The two days we have been home since, she has trailed after him in the home continually shouting, “Dadda! Dadda! Dadda!” and then just stares and smiles at him until he responds.

All in all, my journey finally brought me home to my babies and my Richie…And Josephine and I couldn’t be happier. Because together, as 5, we are complete.

Xo for now from here to there. My next cultural blog post will be…
Europe! It makes it easy for you to get fat.

So stay tuned. In the meantime, enjoy our glorious reunion…


waitingwhen is momma going to come?

Waiting for Momma…

daddy's baby is back!gogo baby has arrived

But GoGo Baby came first!

mommy's home!

After I gathered all the luggage, I finally arrived.

And I was in heaven with my hugs and cuddles.

i get them both!complete!

Rich and I still have yet to take a photo.  It’s probably because we are now in survival mode with jet lag taking over the warped bodies and minds of Brooke and Josephine.  But we get to go to Kalisz on Thursday for the celebration dinner from our Christmas in the Square (raising money for children with cancer) event.  Perhaps then we’ll snap a childless shot together.  And, maybe-just maybe, I won’t fall asleep at the event.  We will have to wait and see.

Ciao for now (or Pa in Polish).

As always.  We love you…

B and R

Mommies, Remember we need to dance with our children, too.


We just moved back to Poland 2 weeks ago this past Tuesday. And today I have actually been just enjoying a chill and unpack slowly day. Richard, my better half of crazy, and Ada (our 8-year-old first child) were in Poznan, Maxwell (our 2-year-old middle child) was sleeping, and Josephine (our 6-month-old baby) was rolling around on the floor.

I’ll fly away came on the radio, and I immediately stopped what I was doing and scooped Josephine in my arms. So many times we think that all daddies need to remember to take time to stop and dance with their daughters. But what about the mommies? Are we less responsible for taking the time to dance with our babies???

So I did it. I stopped what I was doing and scooped up my daughter. I held her in my arms. She held my face. We danced all around the living room, twirling and spinning and tilting our heads back and smiling.

I sang to her smiling face, “Some glad morning when this life is over…I’ll fly away!”

One day I will leave behind my daughter. I will fly away. My savior’s face I will see.

But, in the meantime, while I am still here, I want her to remember me. I want her to remember the song.

And I want her to remember the time her mommy stopped to twirl, sing, and dance with her daughter.

A Mud Run Kept Me in Arizona? No—but the belly is why I started the blog! Happy 2 months, #and2makescrazy

I have a baby in my belly and a 1-year-old and 7-year-old at home.  And I have a husband that I have rarely seen since June.

My daughter, well, right now while we’re in Arizona (United States), she’s the invisible girl—hardly seen!  But that’s an awesome thing.  Because it means that she is usually with friends or cousins playing her little heart out.  You see, we technically live in Poland (since 2001…we started something called Fundacja Bread of Life).  In fact, if this surprise belly didn’t pop up, we’d be back there right now.

Yep!  We were scheduled to be back in Poland on May 10th.  But around May 5th, I felt a little something…called pregnant.  Sure enough, about 10 dollar store tests later, we both finally believed it.  Good thing our mud run was the day before, eh?


And so, my hubby and I decided that there is very little in life (outside of Jesus) that is more important to us than our children.

You see, we went through 5 years of very hollow infertility before God gave us Adelyne Marguerite.

And then it was another 5 years before God gave us our heavenly baby Sam (here’s a honest look at loss and miscarriage:

And, well, I haven’t shared it all on this page, but then 2 years after Sam, we were given Maxwell Loren.  But he was a gift that was almost returned to heaven.  We nearly lost him…multiple times.  He’s our spirited little fighter and an absolute joy in our life.

And that brings us to today…a year after Maxwell was born.  Now I’m pregnant with, whom we call, Belly Josephine (here’s some photos here:, inching my way to 40 years of age.  Yes, getting fossilized here, folks!

13 years of marriage to a man that I nearly didn’t date…

13 years of marriage and 4 babies:  2 that we’ve been able to keep here on earth; one waiting for us in heaven; and one kickball champ in my belly.

And we’re suppose to be in Poland.

But since we value our babies more than life itself, my husband and I decided that I would not travel and would ride out this pregnancy here in the United States with my family just one minute away.  Therefore, I’ve remained in our little rental farmhouse with egg-laying chickens…and he, well he’s been back and forth and around the world getting his “work on”.

He spent the majority of his summer in Poland and Moldova and Zambia.  He’s spending the majority of this fall in Africa and Europe…and I told him that if he’s not back in time for the baby, Adelyne’s my partner in the delivery room.  She was thrilled with that and told me she would sit around and eat popsicles.  Sounds like she’d be great support, eh?!

His work is awesome…but he’s also missed a ton:  Maxwell’s first steps and most of his first words.  Maxwell’s new affinity to climb all objects and to feed himself with a spoon.  Josephine’s major belly kicks and several doctor’s visits to date.  Most of Adelyne’s swim meets, and so much more.

In fact, he’s been gone so much that my son walks past the computer and says, “Hi, Dadda!”


I say all this to say…

Home.  Alone.  With an invisible 7-year-old.  With a 1-year-old.  With a belly baby.

I decided that NOW is the time to start a blog.

And boy it has been a challenge.  And a ton of fun.  And I have not one specific topic to write about—nor focus on.

Sometimes I’m all roaring wife.

Sometimes I’m all crazy momma.

Sometimes I’m zany foreigner.

And sometimes I’m all religious nut.

But…hopefully all of the time…I am real.

And, hopefully, you have enjoyed my blogging journey.

Two months, today!  Woot-woot!

Over 8,500+ views.

And Fifty+ Countries on 6 continents.  Thanks, friends!

It would appear that you are a bit crazy, too.

Just like I am.

Just like Rich.

I just KNEW we’d get along swell!

Looking forward to what the next two months will bring.  Because often even I don’t know until the day before (or, to be honest, the morning of).

Sending you off with a big American hug and 3 Polish kisses,

Brooke (aka the first half of the crazy)


The Christmas mullet…what a shame!

Business in the front…Party in the back!

That’s my daughter, baby!

It’s August.  Why would you write a blog about The Christmas Mullet? You may ask.

Well.  I figured August was the PERFECT time.  After all, there are moments in life when you REALLY, REALLY, REALLY want your children to look good.  No.  Scratch that.  Not good-GREAT!

Christmas is definitely one time.

And back to school another.

Both perfect times for memorable photos.  You know, the photos that actually make it into the photo album.  The moments that you actually cherish…forever!

I figured, since most children were getting ready to go back to school-or just went-it’d be the perfect time for a little seasonal humor.

What you have to remember are three things:

1.  We live in Poland

2.  They eat a lot of soup in Poland

3.  They especially celebrate Christmas Eve

And so it happened.  It was the evening before Wigilia.  Which means, December 23rd.  Poland is a very old country steeped in tradition.  And there is hardly a day bigger in Poland than December 24th itself.  Wigilia is The Day!

Everything is done for their Wigilia dinner to make it just traditionally perfect!  And, oh, it is quite lovely.

So, before we get to Adelyne’s Christmas Mullet, let me introduce you to a few Polish Christmas Eve (Wigilia) traditions.

Traditions include:

Linens on the table—crisp and white, often with hay/straw tucked underneath the tablecloth as a reminder of the birth of Jesus Christ in a humble manger.

An empty chair and place setting—a reminder that there was no room at the Inn for Mary and Joseph.  If a stranger happens by, they are welcomed in and given the chair.
(I haven’t heard of that happening yet, though, with any of our friends.  But the thought is lovely)

The children watch for the first star of the evening (to symbolize when Christ was born), the Gwiazdka.  And when the first star is seen, my favorite part of Wigilia takes place-the breaking of the oplatek (the Christmas wafer).

The wafer is then shared with those around you as you exchange beautiful wishes and love.  It is as heartwarming as it sounds.  Warm fuzzies to be sure.  Oooh.  And I forgot.  As you share the oplatki with those in the room, you get kisses too.  What fun!

In the homes we’ve attended for Wigilia, Luke 2:1-21 is read.  The head of home stands as he reads the Holy Scriptures.  It’s beautifully reverent.  After the reading, it’s time to pray and eat!

Oh the eating is soooo good!  12 meatless dishes are very traditional in Poland for Wigilia.  And when I say 12 meatless dinners, I should also say that 1 of those dishes is traditionally carp.  Want to know the fun behind that?  Some people buy the carp alive at the grocery store and keep it in their bathtub until it’s time to prepare said carp for the Wigilia meal.

Image *Woot-woot!  We had fun with that tradition.  Robert twas a good carp.*

After the meal, the Gwiazdor comes (Starman) and delivers presents!

And, of course, many koledy are sung (Christmas carols).

Perhaps this helped paint a picture of why I would have HOPED (obviously, flawed thinking to begin) that my daughter might just, for once in her life, TRY to avoid disaster for one day 😉

But, of course, her daddy HAD to serve her soup for lunch.

And what happened when she went in for her first bite of barszcz (borscht)???  Her hair fell into her soup.  Heaven forbid!  She couldn’t have that.  So she hopped right down from the table and went for her school supplies and, low and behold, found a miraculous pair of “fixers” aka scissors.  Where was daddy?  That’s the question that was heard around the world.

Let’s just say—her paper cutting skills were already bad.  Now you are witness to the fact that her hair cutting skills were even worse!

So, here it is, folks.  The evening of December 23rd.  I have a daughter with a mullet.  We have Polish Wigilia the next day.  Woe to me.  No Christmas card pictures this year!



Dun…dun..da…dun…Mullet time!

Perhaps, however, this mullet is FAR better than your average Christmas card anyway…

Like I quoted at the beginning…Business in the front.  Party in the back!  Although, from the looks of Adelyne’s mullet, she must have been going for the half business full party mullet.

Well, if that’s what she was going for, she succeeded!  Brilliantly.

Wesolych Swiat, my friends!  Wesolych Swiat!  (Merry Christmas)

Hope your 1st day of school pictures turn out a tad bit better…perhaps even mulletless.