Who IS this Crazy Family?

I, Jennifer, am the main rambling poster on this blog. I’m not going to say much here, except describe my family, as that IS who I am! I can describe my degree, my previous work, where I grew up, etc, but really, my life is being a wife and mother, and a child of a very GRACIOUS GOD!

I am married to the most perfect helpmeet, Ken.  Ken is the articulate, funny one, but he doesn’t have the time to dwell on his posts (I think, thus far, he’s posted only the first 3 on this blog).  He’s much too busy with his work websites for Regent College and his personal clients AS WELL as his photography.  That and …

Sabrina, Sean, Savannah & Claire - (c)Brooka Photographic

Our four (almost 5) children. We have three daughters.  Sabrina is our figure skater, almost a teenager and in high school.  She chose GRACE for her middle name. Which is a good reminder for me to be grace-filled with her as she is with me.  She’s too beautiful for her own good, and the hockey players at the rink enjoy watching her skate way too much for my taste.  But she’s beautiful, you can’t help but stare at beauty when it’s before you.  And her physical beauty is a reflection of her internal beauty.  Her strength, determination and her most amazing attitude. When most of us are handed what she has been handed in life, we don’t fight pretty, Sabrina takes it all with grace, with hope and with a strong will full of helpfulness, thoughtfulness and mercy. I am SO grateful she is a part of our family.

Fun in the Sand (Waldport, Oregon)


AT THIS MOMENT, Ken is keeping score at our son’s VERY FIRST HOCKEY GAME EVER!  Sean (timbit Cougar #14) is our only boy (thus far) and is currently 7.  His favorite hockey player is Alex Burrows (Canucks #14) so Sean chose his middle name, of course, to be Sean “Alex Burrows” McAllister, but we thought that might change over time – so we decided Sean Alexander might be a more “permanent” choice.  And Alexander “Protector of Mankind” is a pretty good name for our son who has an innate awareness of right and wrong and is maybe a little TOO physical in trying to make sure that justice prevails.

Beach Sprite (Newport, Oregon)


Savannah, 5 years old, is our “first” daughter, she is the sprite.  SHE is the one who has the mischievous twinkle in her eye full of determination. The first day at our house I told my husband that she has the best smile, but I couldn’t capture it to show him. That has since changed and if there is a camera out, she is in front of it, full of joy. Delight. Grand ideas. Savannah gives the BEST hugs. For a child who didn’t cry for a week after moving in with us, to a child so full of hope, joy and strength, we are truly blessed to enjoy the miracle of her. We chose HOPE for her middle name, because she was the answer to a prayer, a fleece, and with her followed Sean and Sabrina, who gave us family, and hope for a future for all children who are often lost in generational poverty, abuse and neglect.

Pure Joy

Claire Marie

Finally is Claire Marie Dawn.  Who was our miracle. All of our children are miracles, but Claire Marie wasn’t supposed to happen. First of all, Ken and I both have autoimmune diseases that deplete our ability to conceive, and secondly, we had FIVE children living with us (3 in diapers, in a 2 bedroom townhouse that was for sale) when Claire was conceived (I still think it was immaculate).  I was so tired when I went to the doctor with two babies for a prescription refill, just assuming that the selling of the townhouse and 5 kids was the reason.  When she asked when my last AF was, I said, sometime between Mothers Day and Victoria Day, but she knew my history and held one baby while I peed in a cup – and came back in as much shock as I was.  If I hadn’t had two babies and needed to drive, well, and pregnant, she may have given me something to make me stop shaking. I didn’t believe her and went in for bloodwork.  After six years of peeing on sticks, I never thought one would actually come back POSITIVE!

Claire’s story is the beginning of this blog – but she is quickly following after her big sister, Savannah.  Jumping down the stairs, climbing walls, giggling, screeching and talking up a storm. She hasn’t yet weaned from climbing into our bed every night, but I’m loathe to change that yet, I love waking up to her stroking my face, kissing me and telling me she loves me. Claire’s wild blonde curly mane stands out from her siblings’ Mediterranean roots, but their joy in each other is apparent at a glance.

April Fools Baby

And then our next miracle, who is kicking away, he (?) really likes the warmth of the computer on my lap, as he seems to be very active (or maybe it’s pressing into him) while I lay in bed typing.  No one can possibly convince me that God does NOT have a sense of humor.  For this baby was also conceived in what we would consider “immaculate.” With the adoption paperwork being signed only a few weeks before, we were very “careful” to try NOT to conceive a baby (again, not like it could possibly happen) so not only were we using TIMING, but BARRIERS!  And the ultimate joke, DUE ON APRIL FOOLS DAY! This little one is DEFINITELY a miracle, and although this pregnancy has had lots of mommy complications, the joy of his being is overwhelming to me.  And, no, we don’t know for sure that he is a he, BUT our 12 week ultrasound did seem to show the strong possibility that this child is NOT SHY and NOT a girl.  =)  *we will know in a few weeks if this prediction remains the same, this paragraph may change*

This is our family. As I try to figure out how to format this blog (finally) I wanted you to be able to see and get a sense of how much we love and admire each of our miracles, our blessings, our gifts. Ken and I have seen the work of God in our lives in SO MANY ways, and I’m pretty sure you have too – but sometimes we need to stop and change our perspective to see these gifts, these graces, scattered throughout our lives.

4 responses

    • Thank you Shannon. I spent some time on your blog the other day and was moved to tears by your joy in the midst of great grief. You are amazing. Thank you for encouraging my emerging husband’s photography too! BC is a BEAUTIFUL place to live, it’s hard to not WANT to capture it for the world to enjoy!

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