Hello, our online family! Yes, all of you reading this. Though we don’t know you personally, and will most likely never meet most of you, you’re still are our online family. 🙂

So, as with all family, you share what you are going through and we’d like to share our latest news with you. We are so excited to announce, we are EXPECTING!! Yup, you heard that right. Baby number seven will be joining our family.

Family of eight people standing next to trees and landscaping.

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Baby holding a picture frame sitting on mulch next to a rock.

your questions answered!

So, we get a ton of questions from you guys. From family questions to blogging to everything in between. I’d like to take this post to answer some of those. If I miss something, ask away in the comments below and we’ll answer them.

Husband and wife standing together on a side walk next to bushes and flowers.

why so many kids?!

With our announcement of baby number seven, here are some of the comments we’ve gotten:

  • You guys are crazy…
  • Why so many kids??
  • How in the world do you support them?
  • You guys should have five more, your kids are wonderful.
  • Whatever the Lord gives, you have to accept them as his gift.
  • Etc, etc.

Family picture collage of mother and daughters and a father and sons.

I’d love to take a minute to discuss this. I come from a family of 11, my husband was an only child. We take the topic of childbirth VERY SERIOUS. Having a baby doesn’t take a lot of brains, it’s the raising of the children that is so challenging.

When we had or 5th child, we thought we were done having children. When she turned four, we got rid of all our baby things. Little miracle Elijah was unexpected (his story HERE). When we got pregnant with him (and the shock of the pregnancy wore off), surprisingly we were open to the idea of one more. Initially, I was closed to the idea. But, even before we delivered I can just sense God warming my heart to the idea. Something only God alone can do (because we take children very seriously). And here we are, sharing in the joy of another gift from above.

Six children sitting next to each other next to flowers, bushes and other greenery.

And this is the part that I really speak from the heart. It’s one thing to get pregnant (though I know there are many many women who cannot conceive and my heart goes out to you), it’s another story to raise them. Children need a Godly Father figure actively in their lives full time. The role of a dad in the home is unreplaceable. He will be the first image of a child’s perception of a Heavenly Father. He will be the example of how to love, respect and cherish a wife (something that the children will come to perceive as normal).

We so so often discuss the importance of a Godly and active mother in a child’s life, and yes, don’t get me wrong, I strongly agree. We as mothers (and wives) can many a substantial impact on the lives of our children. However, there are some roles and responsibilities that can only be filled by the Father and Husband.

And that is why adding one more child means one more life we will be accountable for before God. We are incapable of being “perfect” parents, no matter how hard we try. We are very human and flawed and will make mistakes over and over. However, with the guidance of the Holy Spirit, we are able to achieve far greater results.

A family of eight sitting on a bench next to green bushes.

kids’ reactions-

So, last year when we were doing our fall photoshoot, we announced we were expecting Elijah (post HERE). When we found out this year we were expecting again, we decided to tell the children and record their reactions just like the previous year.

We got to the part where we were taking our pictures and my sisters were lining the kids up to take a picture of them. My husband and I turned around with baby Elijah holding a sign, “promoted to Big Brother”. We turn around the kiddos were shocked, HA! They thought we were joking. Elizabeth was shocked the most. Our oldest figured out we were expecting a few months ago, I have been ill. Like really SICK! Without going into the details, this pregnancy is a difficult one. (On a side note, if you’re going to make a sign that says “promoted”, be sure all the children know the world, lol.)

Kids standing next to each other looking away. Parents and a baby holding a baby reveal picture.

how do you run a blog?

A frequent question we get is how in the world we run a blog with all the kids? I like being transparent and open with you so here we are.

I don’t run this blog alone! This year, my husband went to part-time work with his business (he owns a roofing company) and works part-time alongside me. The many questions that answer evokes though, right? I’ll attempt to answer. His English isn’t the greatest so what he helps me with is the household things that I can’t handle alone while running a blog (and we all know things around the home never end). He helps with setting up all the equipment for videos and taking it down. He does a lot of the kids’ things that I managed before (help with appointments, school events, taking them to and from school) and the list goes on. Whatever he can do around the house to release me of work, that’s kind of what he does.

We love balancing life together, and NO, this is not for every family. Some couples just cannot work together. But, I am so grateful it works for us and we just LOVE it.

Sisters sitting on a rock next to a bush of pink flowers.

We have someone on our team that is almost full time as well. Her name is Victoria and she handles all the backend things for us. I consider her more as a partner than an employee though. She is local so she comes into the home and does the recipe testing with me, she helps me shoot the videos and completely manages our social media (All the platforms, except Instagram. Though it’s our smallest platform, it’s my favorite and I manage that. I also answer all the comments on our blog.).

So grateful Victoria a part of our life. She is such a huge blessing to our family.

Without her and my husband, we would not have a running blog. There’s way too much that goes into it and with six kiddos, I would not be able to manage it (or our children would be lacking mom in their life and that’s not an option).

Three boys posing for a self portrait.

A collage of two girls and a baby boy holding a baby reveal picture.

Lastly, the last question we get most often is how we balance everything?

I may dedicate a whole post to this answer one day, it’s a loaded question. I’m all about being organized (OCD overload). I like to know what we are doing and how we are going to do it.

We try to have everything completely finished (workwise) before our children come home from school so we can dedicate our evenings to them and their events. Elizabeth is taking violin lessons, Nathan does chess club and Engineering and the boys do basketball. So, ye, they keep us busy.

No matter how hard I work, I can work harder with greater results. However, what helps me keep things balanced most is knowing we have a greater calling in life than our blog.

As a wife, my top priority is my husband, then our children and everything else after that. Keeping that in perspective really helps with keeping a balanced life.

Husband and wife with two daughters next to greenery and orange flowers.

Brothers standing together on a side walk around greenery.

update on dad-

Many of you have been asking how my dad is doing from our last post. He has not recovered as expected from his initial surgery. Two weeks ago, he was back in the hospital for a week and had a pacemaker put in. We are hoping he is going to start feeling better with that.

exciting happenings on blog-

Well, that was a larger post than expected. Now that the questions are out of the way, I’d like to share that we are finishing up our first EBOOK! It’s going to be amazing! Many, many new and amazing recipes (a variety of recipes). A ton of tips for cooking and also some food for the soul, all in one. We will be launching it the week before Thanksgiving and I’m so excited for you to see it. It will be very affordable and you’re going to love all that it will come with. 🙂

I need your input for our next EBOOK. Would you be interested in something that has all Ukrainian classic recipes, or one-pan meals, or the most popular recipes on the site now but in book form? I’d love to hear what you want to see next. As soon as this one gets published, we will start on the next one. (I’m also considering publishing a Bible study we can do together, that might be fun as well. What do you think?)

Valentina for Valentinas Corner standing in a side walk in a flower garden.

I hope you enjoyed our Fall Family Pictures, our family updates and the answers to your questions.

Lastly, don’t forget, we started to post something personal once a month (the last Friday of the month). Next month, we will share our baby’s room remodel. So excited about the transformation and cannot wait to share it with you.

Thanks for visiting, friends.

We so appreciate all of you, and, without you, this blog would not exist. 🙂