"Our Little Commune" It's 11:40 p.m. on Monday, December 27th. I have the alarm set for 6:00 a.m. so I can elliptical before the babies wake up. I should be sleeping, but I can't. It's not a bad thing, quite the opposite. I'm on cloud 9, completely and utterly blown away by God's goodness. And, since I'm not allowed to say anything yet, I'm preparing my "words" for when I can (obviously by the time YOU read it, the cat is out of the bag!). In order to fully appreciate this story, I'll need to back track a little bit ...
In college I had some amazing friends. Some of my friends I still converse with, make plans with, and see on a relatively regular basis. But, and I'm truly fine with this, throughout my life I've always been a "friend for a season." In high school I had great friends, for high school. In college, I lost touch with high school friends and made new friends, college friends. Those friends were amazing friends for that season. As I moved into my teaching career, I made great friends there too ... My husband is the opposite. It takes Steve a while to trust people and when he makes friends, he makes them for life. Truly, for life! His best friends today are the same guys he hung out with in middle school, high school, through separate colleges (none of them went to the same school!), and into married life. These guys have all married, and managed to bring their wives into the friendship. It's an incredibly unique situation, I know, and I'm blessed to have "inherited" such amazing people in my life. And since we've weathered several "seasons" together, I think we're in it for the long haul.
The boys often joke (just about every time we're all together) about "the commune." A large fictional piece of property that they would construct so we could all live together. It's been rumored to contain things like: a community pool and playground, recreational facilities and even a helipad. I'm positive the guys would all have their dreamed about motorcycles and the girls would be content to live close enough to all workout together and have constant playmates for the children. In all seriousness, Kevin, Scott, and Ryan have been around for just about every "big" event in Steve's life. All three of them stood up at our wedding. And as they got married, Steve and I have been able to be there for them. We attended all of their weddings, had baby "showers" when their children were conceived, visited soon after the births, and camped for extended weekends. We've spent EVERY New Years (since our marriage) together, and built a little community that someday we hope will include living in the same city, (if, of course, the communal property doesn't pan out)!
At any rate, this blog post is to celebrate an incredible year in the life of this little "community." This calendar year God has taken all four of our families and turned them upside down with new life. At our New Year's Eve party on December 31, 2009, the community consisted of two little ones: Kayleigh, 13 months and Carson, 9 months.
In May, as you know, God blessed Steve and I with "Big" Benjamin. So, our "community children" went from 2 under 2 to 3 under 2. In August, God gave Ryan and Renee Texer their sweet Emma Rae. So, our community grew from 3 under 2 to 4 under 2. In September, God blessed Scott and Kelly with their second baby boy, Eli David. We're now at 5 under 2. Kayleigh turned 2 in November and the age range expanded to "2 and under." But we're still a VERY busy group when we get together.
Tonight, after much anticipation, and many prayers, our good friends Kevin and Megan welcomed their miracle twins into the community - Eden Elizabeth and Conner Thomas join the busy band to give us 7 children, 2 and under! Bet ya' wish you could be a fly on the wall at OUR next get together ... :)
In all seriousness, 2010 has been an amazing year for the Van Dyks, but we are just as flooded with thankfulness for the way that God has overseen our dear friends this past year. It hasn't been easy for any of us (all with separate challenges that are our own stories to tell), but when I look at back at 2010, these will be some of the moments that I thank God I could witness.
Congratulations Kev and Meg, we can't wait to see your little treasures. And thanks, again, God for: Kayleigh, Carson, Benjamin, Emma, Eli, Eden and Connerr!
Hugs to you all, Kristi (and the rest of the sleeping household).