Archive for the ‘Kidd News’ Category

Christmas Newsletter 2018

Friday, December 28th, 2018

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

What a year! Milestones to celebrate, challenges to face, ups and downs, lots of laughter and tears.

January found us finishing renovations on our Toronto home, February saw us hiring a realtor and staging the house, and in March we accepted an offer which closed the end of June. So grateful to have that long and difficult process behind us!

On May 19th we celebrated our tenth wedding anniversary! God has been so good to us.

And much more happened this year: two family baptisms, a family wedding (in which I was a bridesmaid and Melinda and Serena were flower girls), a camping trip, family get-togethers, picnics, tea parties, crafts with the kids, skating, skiing, boating, hiking, swimming, and more. Life was very full this year.

Then, to top it all off, in mid-November we moved into our new house! Currently we are living on the main floor, using two side rooms as temporary bedrooms, and operating with one half-finished bathroom, a laundry room sink, and a stove, fridge, and a couple tables for a kitchen. It’s a little cluttered and chaotic, but it’s home, and we’re happy to be in it at last. We have an 8′ tall real Christmas tree gracing our living room, Christmas lights framing our large window, and Christmas music playing almost every day. We have a magnificent view of the snowy landscape too. We are soaking it all in and counting our blessings every day.

Speaking of blessings, we have a boat full…

Justin is 9 years old, and he continues to grow in maturity. He’s been a huge help at home, cheerfully doing chores such as hanging laundry, stacking wood, washing dishes, mopping, etc. He remains a sweet-tempered, easy-going boy, much to our joy. His passion continues to be Lego, although he has a growing interest in cross-country skiing, and he’s becoming a real bookworm too. Justin has a keen memory, and makes insightful comments during catechism and Bible reading times.

Patrick is 8, and has also been a huge help around the house. Like Justin, he’s been tackling chores such as hanging laundry, stacking wood, sweeping, washing dishes, folding laundry, etc. He has an eye for detail, and is fairly observant. The other week he was telling our dinner guests what roads he would take to Grandma’s house, demonstrating a good sense of direction as he did so. Patrick loves to build with Lego, but he also has a growing interest in drawing, reading encyclopedias and nature field guides (birds, reptiles, etc.), and spotting wildlife (turkey vultures, garder snakes, and deer being the most popular thus far).

Oliver is 5, and remains an energetic and exuberant little boy. He officially started homeschooling this year, and proved to be a quick and clever student. Like his brothers, he’s been learning some new chores, and has been growing in responsibility. He’s also been learning some new skills this year, such as swimming and cross-country skiing. Oliver can usually be found in the “Lego room” with his brothers, or playing house with his sisters, or out working with Daddy. He’s also great for a snuggle on Mommy’s lap in a cozy chair with a book.

Melinda is soon-to-be 4, and she is a sweet and snuggly little person, too. Melinda has been tagging along with Oliver’s schooling, and has already learned her alphabet sounds, counting, colors, etc. She is a little girly-girl, changing her outfit multiple times a day, and also picking out cute clothes for her little sister to wear. She loves to play house, and you can often find her and Serena setting up all their things in a cozy spot. Melinda likes to pitch in with others’ chores, and is particularly quick to help with sweeping and mopping. Her favourite colour is definitely pink, and she loves her toy cat “Kitty” and her doll, “Lucy.”

Serena is 2 1/2. She has big blue eyes, golden curls, and is full of sweet smiles. She loves to sing, or more accurately, to be part of the family’s singing after meals. She will run for the hymnals as soon as the meal starts to draw to a close. Serena loves to tag along and be a part of whatever we are doing, whether it’s playing house, building with Lego, washing dishes, doing school, or simply laughing at a joke. She is quite a talker now, and the results can be both cute and hilarious. She is our little sunshine.

Ryan has been working like a champ all year, first finishing the renovations of our old house, then tackling our construction project again with his dad faithfully helping him at almost every stage. It’s been quite a Herculian task — mudding the drywall alone took 6-8 weeks! Ryan put in 10+ hour days, 6 days a week, to get the house ready for us. This past month, since we’ve moved in, he’s been taking a well-deserved break, and the kids and I have been enjoying all the extra time with him.

As for myself, this year presented some struggles and health challenges related to chronic fatigue. But I have much to be grateful for, not least of which is my supportive family and our new home. God has shown great mercy to me this year, for which I praise and thank Him. Amazing Grace! How sweet the sound that saved a wretch like me.

May the Lord bless and keep you all this Christmas season and in the New Year.

Kristin for the Kidds

Celebrating God’s Grace

Saturday, May 19th, 2018

 

 

Christmas Newsletter 2017

Wednesday, December 20th, 2017

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

We hope this Christmas newsletter finds all our friends and family well.

This year, after many months of prayer, planning, and preparation, we made a life changing move, the upshot of which is: We are building a house! You can find a shortened version of the construction photo album here.

We are in the process of trying to sell our Toronto home, and are halfway through the construction of the new house, which is located in Markdale, ON, about a two hours’ drive northwest of Toronto, and a 20 min. drive from Ryan’s parents. Ryan has been overseeing the project and building the house largely by himself, with the generous help of his dad, a few hired hands, and the occasional volunteer hours of friends and family.

We are so grateful for all the support and encouragement from family and friends, but are especially indebted to Ryan’s parents, Michael and Marilee, who made a room in their basement for our family to live in during the construction phase, gave us free run of their house, and have contributed so many resources towards helping us. All the help from family and friends has made the transition so much easier.

The kids have been pretty resilient through the process, though they miss their home and friends in the city.

Justin is now 8, and growing in maturity and responsibility. He is sweet-tempered, easy-going, and eager to please. He’s even had a hand in the building of the new house: moving materials, fetching tools, spreading gravel, etc. Justin loves to spend time with friends and family, especially his cousins. His biggest interest continues to be Lego, and he has demonstrated a remarkable ability  in recreating objects that he has only seen in pictures (e.g. a Lego model of the submersible that discovered the sunken Titanic). His reading ability advanced by leaps and bounds this year and he is now reading books on his own.

Patrick turned 7 this year, and is also growing in maturity and responsibility. He too had a hand in building the new house. Patrick is analytical, witty, and a hard worker when he sets his mind to a task. He is quite a monkey at climbing. Patrick also has a great interest in tools and machinery, more than you would expect from a young boy. For example, when Ryan gave him a broken weed wacker for his birthday and told him they would fix it together, you wouldn’t believe the amount of excitement it generated! A chip off the old block, that one.

Oliver is at the grand age of four years and is ever the rowdy one, yet once in a while you can catch a sweet little glimpse of him playing house quietly with his sister Melinda. He is a clever little boy, he loves to tease and joke, and his smiles and giggles are contagious. Oliver is also excited about Lego and playing with his older brothers and cousins. He has a big imagination and is full of ideas of things to do and games to play.

Melinda will be turning 3 just after Christmas. She is a “kleine moeder,” that is, a “little mother.” Melinda is very observant, and can help me find things when I’ve forgotten where I placed them. She likes to help with the housework, although sometimes she will re-organize things to suit her own tastes. She has quite a vocabulary, and will tell you in no uncertain terms that she won’t eat salsa because it has “halapeenyos” in it, and is, as such, too “picy” for her. She keeps me on my toes. She loves to play with PlayDoh and her toy kitty, and loves to read books with Mommy.

Serena is 1 1/2 years old. She is our sweet little cherub with big blue eyes and wispy blonde curls. Almost everyone who sees her comments on how bright her blue eyes are and what a big beautiful smile she has. And she is fairly easy to coax a smile out of, much to our delight. You can often find Serena tagging along with her older siblings, especially Melinda and Oliver. She loves dolls, and will wrap her babies in just about any bit of clothing she can find, so after a few embarrassing incidents, we try to keep our dresser drawers tight shut and our laundry out of her sight.

Ryan and I are still happily in love–which is good because our 10th anniversary is fast approaching (in May 2018). This year has had its ups and downs for us, with the stresses of trying to sell, trying to build, trying to homeschool, and trying to find time for the kids, each other, and all our many other responsibilities. It’s been little chaotic, to say the least, but God has been good to us, and we have been growing closer together through it all.

A Blessed Christmas, from our family to yours.

The Kidds

Christmas Newsletter 2016

Thursday, December 8th, 2016

Merry Christmas and a Blessed New Year!

Well, the first half of this year was rather a wild ride for us, but we have a lot to praise and thank God for, as many of our friends and family already know.

Last Christmas (December 2015) we had the delightful surprise of discovering that another precious child was on the way. Then in late January we were told that an ultrasound had found a subchorionic hemorrhage, which threatened the pregnancy and the baby. Over the next three and a half months, I was in bedrest most of the time and Ryan worked from home in order to help manage the children and household chores. We had the support of family and friends during those months, through prayer, meals, childcare, etc., which meant a lot to us and helped to ease the burden. I was eventually induced and Serena Hope Kidd was born on May 17th — my 30th birthday.

Yet that was not the end of our difficulties, as shortly after her birth little Serena was laboring to breathe, and an x-ray revealed a hole in her lung. Over the next few hours her condition rapidly deteriorated, and Ryan and I began to fear for her life. Serena was transferred to Sick Kids, where she bounced back quickly, praise God, and after a week in the NICU we were able to take her home.

It was a wonderful, busy summer and fall, with Ryan at home on extended paternity leave and five little kiddos filling our home with fun and laughter.

Some of the highlights of the year include: birthdays; Serena’s baptism party; summer vacations, long weekends, and holidays spent with both sides of the family; my brother’s wedding; family time at our property up north; having a sweet new baby in the house; etc.

Justin is seven years old now. He continues to be an outgoing, active young boy with a big imagination and a heart of gold. After school is over for the day, you will often find him playing in the backyard with his cousins. If not there, he’ll be building something with Legos or filling reams of paper with action-packed drawings and pictures. I am pretty proud of him for the way he will help and care for his little siblings, even without being asked, and how reliable he is with running little errands for me.

Patrick is just over six years old. He’s a pretty strong and agile boy, and he can climb a wall or tree like a monkey. Patrick shares his father’s interest in machinery and man projects, and it’s not unusual to see him working alongside Ryan or discussing how to fix things with him. The two of them like to scheme together behind my back (or right in front of me) to buy machines like snowmobiles, tractors, and excavators. Patrick is attentive to detail and can be fairly thorough in his work.

Oliver is three, and still our little sunshine. His big blue eyes sparkle with mischief and fun, and his smile and giggle are incredibly contagious. You can’t ever miss him if he’s in a room with you, as he will always make his presence known. He loves being around people and being involved in what they are doing, and will often be found playing with his older brothers or his cousins. He adores his baby sister, as do his older brothers, and like them he attempts to smother little Serena daily with kisses.

Melinda is almost two, and she’s a busy, intelligent little girl. She already had a growing vocabulary by 16 months, and now she’s saying whole sentences, asking questions, making requests, etc. She’s got her own ideas about how to run the house, and it’s a race every day to stay ahead of her! That said, she can be very sweet, and she likes to help Mommy and her brothers with their chores. Her favourite toy is her pink kitty, which she hugs at night as she falls asleep.

Well, you’ve already seen Serena about 4 times (all of the kids wanted their picture taken with Serena, including Patrick, although in each of his photos with her he was looking at Serena and not at the camera…). However, I still wanted to include a photo of her all by herself…

Serena is our sweet little doll of a baby, with big blue eyes, long dark lashes, and plenty of chub. Now over six months old, she delights all of us with her big sweet smiles, her coos, and her laughter. She’s an irresistible little bundle of joy, and we are so privileged to have her as one of our family.

Ryan and I have our hands full — full of blessings from God. Sometimes having so many blessings proves to be quite a challenge, but overall we are thankful and happy for the wonderful life God has given us.

And we are eternally thankful for the gift of His precious Son, whom we celebrate at this time of the year. We could not have such a spirit of joy were it not for the hope that we have received through Him.

To God be the glory, great things He has done!

Praising God for Our Precious Child

Thursday, May 19th, 2016

With deepest joy and gratitude to God for the arrival

of our precious baby, we would like to announce

the birth of our fifth child,

Serena Hope Kidd

born at 3:50 am on Tuesday, May 17, 2016

weighing 5 lbs. 7 oz. (2.4 kg.)

_________________________________________________

Baptism

Serena will be baptized at

2:45 pm, on Sunday, June 12, 2016

at the New Horizon Church in Scarborough

(Bridletowne Park Church, 2300 Bridletowne Circle)

See www.newhorizonchurch.ca/wp/map for directions.

All are welcome to attend.

_________________________

Serena, 7 days old, with brother Justin at the homecoming party

_____________________

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What are the baby’s birth specifications? A: weight: 5 lbs., 7 oz. (2.4 kg);  length:  19 in. (48 cm); dark hair.
  2. How long was Kristin’s labour? A: 2.5 hours from start of established labour to birth.
  3. Where was the birth? A: The baby was born at Scarborough Grace Hospital.
  4. Were there any complications? A: due to a subchorionic hemorrhage and a pregnancy-induced liver function disorder, the obstetrician considered it best to induce labour 3 weeks early. After unsuccessful attempts to induce labour with gel and breaking of the waters, labour was finally established through intravenous oxytocin.
  5. Are mother and baby well? Mother is well, however, little Serena was transferred to the NICU at Sick Kids Hospital on account of complications affecting her lungs and breathing. She made steady progress in her recovery and was sent home a week later with a clean bill of health, for which we are very thankful.
  6. How is breastfeeding? A: Serena was initially receiving fluids through IV, was then introduced to milk feedings through a nasal tube into her stomach, and is now breastfeeding exclusively and is doing well.
  7. Why did you name the baby Serena Hope?  A:  The name Serena means “serene, calm, peaceful.” The name Hope means, well, “hope.” We chose the name some months ago, long before we realized how tumultuous and difficult the day of her birth would become, and how fitting her name would prove to be. God was our Rock, giving us hope in the midst of the storm, shielding our tiny baby girl. We knew that, whatever the outcome of those first 24 hours, little Serena Hope was in His Almighty hands.
  8. What is the baby’s theme verse? A: God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, even though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea (Psalm 46:1-2).
  9. Fun fact: Serena was born on Kristin’s 30th birthday. She is the best birthday gift Kristin has ever received. 🙂
  10. Why are you choosing to baptize your baby? A: We do not believe baptism will make the baby go to heaven automatically.  But just as male babies received the covenant sign of circumcision in the Old Testament, we believe that God requires us to put His mark of ownership on our children, and in baptism He promises to save our children as they grow up to receive the covenant promises, repenting of their sins personally and learning to love and obey the Lord Jesus.
  11. Do you need meals or anything else? A:  We are very thankful for all the support we have been receiving from family and friends. The other four children were in the wonderful caring hands of their grandparents for the week that Serena was in the NICU, but are now home again.
  12. Donations in honour of? If you want to give a gift in honour of Serena, we might suggest sending a donation to the Christian Blind Mission.   CBM provides eye operations and life impacting treatments to children in the third world who are truly in need.  International Justice Mission also does good work and it accepts international donations.

 

Thank you all for your love and prayers for us at this precious time!

A Belated Christmas Announcement

Saturday, March 12th, 2016

by Kristin

We had a little Christmas surprise (or rather, a big one) that we wanted to share with you.

We’re having another baby! Baby Kidd #5 is due June 6, 2016.

However, we have been facing some complications with the pregnancy, and there’s a significant risk that the baby could come prematurely. We would appreciate your prayers for this little one at this time.

~The Kidds~

Christmas Newsletter 2015

Wednesday, December 9th, 2015

Merry Christmas and a Blessed New Year!

Time flies when you’re having fun. God has been very good to us again this year. Some of the highlights of 2015 include:

Spending the holidays with family.

Camping and cottaging with family.

Two family weddings (Kristin’s cousins).

Lots of weekends spent enjoying and improving our new property up north.

Assembling tandem bikes with the kids for Ryan’s hobby business.

Having a 10′ inflatable pool in the backyard and teaching the kids to be comfortable in the water.

Enjoying our new little daughter and sister, Melinda Joy, who arrived late in December of 2014.

Homeschooling the boys; learning about ancient and medieval time periods together.

Birthday parties for the kids.

Reading lots of exciting books as a family.

And the list could go on….

The kids are growing fast.

Justin is six years old now, outgoing, enthusiastic, a little precocious and a little scattered. He has a caring heart, a bright mind, a boundless imagination, and a restless energy about him. He loves Lego, play-acting, dress-up (soldiers, knights, etc.), and drawing.

Patrick is five years old, sensitive, thoughtful, and a little headstrong at times. He’s a real homebody, and tends to be quiet and shy when around other people. Like Justin, he too loves Lego, play-acting and dress-up, but Patrick gets especially excited about working with Daddy, and talking about tools, machinery, and heavy equipment.

Oliver is two and a half years old. He is funny, energetic, enthusiastic, and into everything like a dirty shirt! If his older brothers can do it, so can he, whether it be drawing, play-acting, building Lego, doing school, building forts, climbing dirt piles and boulders, etc., etc. There’s no holding this little guy back. He smiles almost all the time, and he’s like a ray of sunshine in the family.

Melinda is the new girl on the block. She’s learning how to survive with three older brothers, and how to fend for herself. She is beginning to cruise the furniture, and can wiggle across the floor like a fish in water. Melinda loves oranges, her toy cat, and playtime with her brothers, mommy, and daddy. She likes to listen to us sing hymns and read stories. The boys are pretty thrilled to have a little sister, and it’s clear that she loves them all too.

A very Merry Christmas from our family to yours. May God bless you richly in the coming year.

 

Melinda Joy Kidd

Friday, January 2nd, 2015

Update Jan 17, 2015: Baptism Day Photos (picasa)

———-

With deepest joy and gratitude to God for the safe arrival

of our precious baby, we would like to announce

the birth of our fourth child (and first daughter),

Melinda Joy Kidd

born at 6:40pm on Monday, December 29, 2014

weighing 6 lbs 9 oz.

_________________________________________________

Baptism

Melinda will be baptized at

2:30pm, on Sunday, January 11, 2015

at the New Horizon Church in Scarborough.

See www.newhorizonchurch.ca/wp/map for directions.

All are welcome to attend.

_________________________

Melinda with brother Justin, 5 days old

_________________________

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What are the baby’s birth specifications? A: weight: 6 lb. 9 oz. (2.7kg);  length: 20.5inches (51.5cm), dark hair, blue eyes.
  2. How long was Kristin’s labour? A: 2 hours from start of established labour to birth.
  3. Were there any complications? A: due to a pregnancy-induced liver function disorder, the OB considered it best to induce labour 2 weeks early.  Apart from breaking the waters to induce labour, we’re thankful that the birth was all natural without complications.
  4. Where was the birth? A: The baby was born at Scarborough Grace Hospital due to having to be induced on account of Kristin’s liver function problem.
  5. How is breastfeeding? A: Melinda is feeding very well and is thriving.
  6. Why did you name the baby Melinda Joy?  A:  The name Melinda means “Gentle” or “Sweet.” The name Joy means, well, “Joy.” [You could say she’s our “Sweet little bundle of joy.” 🙂 ]  The proximity of her birth to Christmas had an influence on the choice of names. Christmas is a time of joy, of rejoicing, a season to celebrate the coming of our Saviour. Hence the middle name Joy. Furthermore, it is our prayer that our daughter, as she grows and matures, will aspire after the mother of Christ, Mary, a young woman who found favour with God, who humbly trusted His word, and who offered herself as a willing servant to the Lord (Luke 1:30, 38).
  7. What is the baby’s theme verse? A: The theme verse is taken from Mary’s song, the Magnificat: “My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit has rejoiced in God my Savior. For He has regarded the lowly state of His maidservant; for behold, henceforth all generations will call me blessed. For He who is mighty has done great things for me, and holy is His name. And His mercy is on those who fear Him from generation to generation” (Luke 1:46-50).  
  8. Why are you choosing to baptize your baby? A: We do not believe baptism will make the baby go to heaven automatically.  But just as male babies received the covenant sign of circumcision in the Old Testament, we believe that God requires us to put His mark of ownership on our children, and in baptism He promises to save our children as they grow up to receive the covenant promises, repenting of their sins personally and learning to love and obey the Lord Jesus.
  9. Do you need meals or anything for the baby? A:  We are fairly well supplied with meals at the moment, thanks to family and friends. However, we would gladly accept donations of hand-me-down baby and toddler girl clothes, so Melinda doesn’t have to wear her brothers’ baby clothes. 🙂
  10. Donations in honour of? If you want to give a gift in honour of Melinda, we might suggest sending a donation to the Christian Blind Mission.   CBM provides eye operations and life impacting treatments to children in the third world who are truly in need.   International Justice Mission also does good work and it accepts international donations.

Thank you all for your love and prayers for us at this precious time!

Christmas Newsletter 2014

Thursday, November 13th, 2014

Merry Christmas and a Blessed New Year to all our friends and family!

The year went so fast. It’s hard to believe it’s the Christmas season again already.

It was a long, cold winter. The ice storm that hit the GTA a few days before Christmas in 2013 knocked out our power for two days. Thankfully, between a large kerosine heater and some generators we borrowed from Ryan’s brother Joel on the second day, we were able to manage the inconveniences of no electricity with little discomfort.

Come the new year, the weather was bitterly cold at times and the winter seemed to last forever. Needless to say, we stayed indoors a lot. Ryan and I tried to keep the boys busy with some preschool and woodworking activities.

In March and April, we celebrated Justin’s 5th birthday and Oliver’s 1st. During those early spring months, Ryan and I made some plans and began transforming two small rooms in our basement into one large playroom for the boys. Ryan took out the partition wall, added some new drywall and pot lights, and painted the room a beautiful sky blue. Together with my sister Danielle, I painted some big fluffy white clouds on the walls and painted the doors and trim white. Over the course of the year, I added a toy organizer and a small table and chairs. Later in the year, Ryan built a jungle gym for the playroom with two towers and monkey bars for the boys to climb and swing on. If another harsh winter strikes, we are well prepared!

In May, we were thankful and joyful to discover that we were expecting another child. Baby Kidd #4 is due to arrive in January 2015!

Summer brought a buzz of activity. I was gardening again this year, as well as spending hours preparing for homeschooling Justin in the fall. On top of that, I volunteered to help my sister Danielle prepare for her wedding, as she had only a few months to get ready. Many hours of planning and crafting went into making it a beautiful event. I also took the kids and their cousins to the Reptile Zoo in Vaughn for a field trip in June.

Over July and August we attended three weddings and a wedding shower and went camping/cottaging with both sides of the family. What an exciting summer!

In September, we celebrated Patrick’s 4th birthday. We also acquired a 50 acre parcel near the Beaver Valley in Grey County, about a 20 minute drive from Ryan’s parents’ house. Over the next few months, we spent many weekends there, camping out in the cabin and, with the help of family and friends, doing a lot of work in the fields and bush, cutting back the growth at the edges in preparation for a neighbouring farmer to come and cultivate the land for us.

The boys and I have been enjoying homeschooling for the most part. Some days they are excited for school and other days, well, they are not-so-excited about their work.

Justin is my star math student. He loves math, and really has a head for numbers, surprising me at times with his understanding. He is obsessed with Legos, and can disappear for hours at a time behind those little blocks and minifigures in the playroom. He is also becoming quite a help with little tasks around the house, such as washing dishes, caring for Oliver, fetching things for me, and cleaning up toys. He is a bright and happy boy, whose smile and giggle can really light up a room. He likes to ask a lot of questions, and can really test the extent of my knowledge with his insatiable curiousity.

Patrick is more quiet and sensitive than his older brother, but nonetheless a sweet little boy who loves time and attention from Daddy and Mommy. He has faithfully remembered the new little baby in his prayers during the course of the pregnancy. One of Patrick’s favourite things to do is spend time with Daddy working on some project or machine. He also loves tigers, and likes to dress up in a tiger costume whenever he has the opportunity at Grandma’s house.

Oliver is our resident cutie-pie. Now 18 months old, he is energetic and enthusiastic to be involved in what everyone else is doing. Whether it’s washing dishes or sweeping the floor with Mommy, playing Legos or colouring pictures with his big brothers, or hitting keys on Daddy’s laptop while Ryan is typing, Oliver is an irresistible companion — in more than one sense! His infectious giggle would cause anyone to break out in a smile. He loves his teddy bears and stuffed animals, and can’t go to bed without them.

Between three lively boys, a pregnant wife, volunteer positions, and hobbies, Ryan has been keeping very busy once again this year. He had the boys helping him with the tandem bike business again this summer. Though he did not participate in any long distance bike rides this year, he took all of us on a number of rides down the Don Valley trail. We attracted a lot of attention from passerby with our bike for five (kangaroo baby seat + tandem bike + tandem bike trailer = 5 riders). The conundrum he has yet to solve, however, is where to add on a seat for a sixth passenger once the baby graduates from riding inside Mommy!

We are thankful to God for all His many blessings, and for the strength He gives us to face the trials and challenges of each day. We rest in peace, knowing that God guides and governs the future,  and that even in the midst of troubles and distress, we can trust Him to see us through dark days and over a difficult path. Not in our time, but in His time. Not by our plans, but by His wisdom.

A Blessed Christmas to all of you,

Ryan & Kristin, Justin, Patrick, Oliver, and Baby

Christmas Newsletter 2013

Thursday, December 5th, 2013

by Kristin

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! We hope this newsletter finds you all well.

What a wonderful year this has been for us! We are so very blessed, and give thanks to God continually for His mercy toward us, both in saving us in the midst of our sin and rebellion and for granting us such abundance when we are in no way deserving.

In January and February we were enjoying the snow. The boys and Ryan had lots of opportunities to shovel off driveways together, both for ourselves and for our elderly neighbours. Ryan also did some little woodworking projects with the boys just for fun, such as building a birdhouse, some rough wooden boats and cars, and a jointed crocodile from scraps.

March saw us preparing for the new arrival. Ryan built a small bunkbed for the boys with some help for me, and I built a shelf for the baby’s room with some help from him. I also made some curtains and a crib skirt to add some finishing touches. Then the hunt was on for a bigger vehicle to move the growing family around. We settled on a 2008 Toyota Sienna with low mileage, and thus far have been blessed with its reliability and performance.

End of April, our precious little Oliver Truman Kidd made a surprise arrival. I developed a pregnancy-related liver condition which necessitated inducing labour two weeks before the due date. Praise be to God, the complication and the early introduction had no ill effects on Oliver, and my liver returned to normal levels quickly.

We spent May in wonder and awe over this tiny little person (and he was tiny! Born 5lbs 14oz!). Ryan was home for two weeks on paternity leave, and his mom and sister came and helped us for some time too.

June, July, and August saw us adjusting to life with three little ones, getting in some vacation time and weekends away with extended family, attending church picnics, playing at the neighbourhood park, and enjoying some family bike rides. Ryan once again went on some long distance rides this summer, biking to Haliburton and the Blue Mountains, and doing some 100+ km loops around Toronto.

We spent September and October trying to enjoy to the fullest what we knew to be the last warm days of the year, getting outside with the kids as much as we could, and trying to finish every last painting project we could think of. Don’t ask me how it happened, but I ended up urethaning three dining tables, and then staining and urethaning a 5′ x 6′ bookshelf. Needless to say, I was pretty tired of painting by the end of it!

We had wonderful Thanksgiving celebrations with both sides of the family, and had the opportunity to make and can lots of applesauce, thanks to the productive apple tree in our backyard. The boys and I dropped in on the local fire station for a visit, and were given a first class tour of the firetrucks. We also enjoyed a whole day at the Toronto Zoo with Justin and Patrick’s cousins from the Kidd family.

These last couple months we have been working on a variety of projects and have been making preparations for the winter and the coming year. Ryan did quite a bit of volunteer work this year for various kingdom ministries. The last couple of weeks he has been editing sermon audio files during his available evening hours. In addition to his numerous volunteer activities, Ryan still loves getting out on his bike, tinkering on industrial arts projects in his garage, and spending time with his boys. Ryan hired on Justin and Patrick again this summer as his assistants in his tandem bike business. They earned a few dollars for helping to remove packaging and fasten pedals and water bottle holders to the bicycle frames.

Justin turned four in March. In the summer we took the training wheels off his bike, and after a tempting bribe and about 15 minutes of practice — not joking! — he was riding like a champ – except it took a little longer to learn to use the brakes!  He is obsessed with Lego, and will often be found making spaceships and cars, or acting out a battle between his Lego men forces. He is an outgoing kid, and loves to play with cousins or other children at church. He adores little Oliver, and has told us that he wants more baby brothers to play with!

Patrick too loves his baby brother. Patrick turned three in September. He has a beautiful smile and the cutest giggle. Patrick is enamored with firetrucks, backhoes, and other construction equipment. He loves to spend one-on-one time with Daddy or Mommy, whether it be working with tools, doing household chores with me, sitting on Ryan’s knee watching backhoe videos on Youtube, or having a storybook read to him. For the past month or two, we have been reading through the Thornton Burgess bedtime book series, which is a real favourite of both the boys.

Oliver, our sweet little baby, is growing too fast for us. He is seven months old now, and is starting to crawl and get into things. He popped his first tooth at 4 1/2 months and now boasts four chompers. He has the most adorable squeal and is loads of fun to play with. He is a pretty happy and easygoing baby most of the time.

I have been pretty busy and happy too. Early in the year, I was busy preparing the baby’s room for Oliver’s arrival. More recently, I have been making a school room for our boys in the extra bedroom, complete with a child-sized table and stools. I have some Montessori and phonics materials, lots of timeless storybooks, and some great ideas in store for teaching them in the new year. As for other interests, I upgraded my camera this year after our point-and-shoot broke. I’ve been enjoying learning about the fundamentals of photography and experimenting with the camera settings to catch great photos. I’m also interested in learning more about canning and food preserving and trying some different recipes and techniques.

We pray God’s blessings upon each and every one of you this Christmas and for the New Year.

-The Kidds