Monday, December 31, 2012

Looking back on 2012

I realize I didn't do much blogging this year.  :)  Oops.  I really had hopped to do more, but I guess real life got in the way.

On this last day of 2012, I'd like to take a moment to reflect on some of the happenings of this year.


  • What a joy she is in our lives!  She didn't start walking until May of this year (around 21 months), but life got so much easier once she learned how to walk!  All of the sudden, the whole world was at her fingertips!  
  • It has been so much fun to see her grow and develop.  She has always had a lot of words, but now, she is stringing 4 and 5 words together to make sentences, and is really able to communicate with us! 
  • Some of her favorite things this year were camping, boating, spending time with grandparents and cousins.  She also loves books, dolls, and most recently, playing with her nativity sets.  She loves music, and sings and dances along to anything that has a beat!
  • It is amazing to see the world through a 2-year-old's eyes.  She points out things I have never really "seen before," and makes me stop and really see the world before me.
  • She loves to "snuggle," rock, and read stories before bedtime, and her favorite movie right now is the Veggie Tale's "Esther" because she sings so much.
  • I am really enjoying our time together because I know that will change as we add to our family!
  • Ben has had the opportunity to take on a new job with Palouse Rive Rock.  It is a growing family business that my dad, brother and grandpa started a few years ago.  He is really enjoying the hands on experience and challenges that it brings.  
  • He also started his BKEngineering LLC and has been doing some contracting on the side.   
  • We found out in May that a new little one would be joining our family!  There was much fear and trepidation as we entered this journey, as I have only had "stress" in relation to any of my pregnancies!  
  • It was a huge step of faith and we embarked, and I can say with a joyful, thankful heart that I will be 36 weeks this coming Friday, January 4th.  My pregnancy has been pretty much "normal" up to this point, and I can only thank the Lord for that!
  • We found out at Kayla's birthday celebration that our new addition would be a little sister, thanks to the pink heart inside Kayla's birthday cake!  
  • We can't wait to meet our sweet little "Minnie!"
  • Ben and I celebrated our 5 year anniversary and our 30 year old milestone by taking a trip to Cabo San Lucas, Mexico without Kayla.  We spent a week there and really enjoyed ourselves!
  • We bought a 5th Wheel RV Camper that is 18 years old!  It is in almost-new condition, though, and we are excited for all the memories to be made in it!  
  • We took a trip out to Montana to throw Nadeen a 60th birthday party!  We told them then that we were expecting!  My dad also celebrated 60 years of life this summer!
  • We always enjoy trips to Boise to visit dear friends.
  • We found out we are going to be an aunt and uncle again as my brother and sister-in-law are adopting a sweet girl from China!  We await her arrival in March of 2013!
  • Summer days were filled with garden and yard work and spending time at the river camping and boating!
  • We are still living in our cozy house in Pullman, and are working on moving Kayla upstairs to her "big girl room."  
  • We celebrated Christmas with my family by renting a beautiful home in Coeur d Alene Idaho for a week.  Skiing, time at the water park, shopping, ping-pong, going to "The Hobbit," reading and entertaining kids were among the list of activities!  The house was beautiful, and we had a beautiful view of the lake with snow on the trees.  We even built some snowmen and the kids loved playing in the snow.  
  • We are very involved in our church as Ben is the head of the Trustee's board (that oversees all of the maintenance type issues)  and I continue to serve on the Praise Team.  We really enjoy being a part of such a wonderful family!  
  • We are a part of a small Bible Study group that meets once a week, and this fall, we hosted each Monday evening.
  • I still sell Pampered Chef and enjoy the parties I get to do.  I am also still making my hand crochet headbands, flowers, ear warmers and wrist bands.  I just set up a business facebook page, so my goal is to figure out how to use it now!  Check it out Kovanda Kreations!
  • All of my four grandparents are still alive and in good health, and we enjoy spending time with them as much as we can!  
  • Having my brother and his family and my sister and her husband so close is such a blessing.  We are always having get togethers for birthdays and other impromptu events!  We are blessed to have so many baby sitters around as well!
Well, I know there was more to our year than that, but I think that about does it for now!  

Blessings to you as we close down this year and being another one!  

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Remembering Our Sweet Baby K

This day always is a reminder to me of the little one I won't get to hold this side of heaven.

With a heavy heart, though, I have much peace knowing I WILL meet that sweet baby someday.  I often wonder if it was a boy or a girl.

It's amazing to me that I could have a three year old running around.  I think the thing that is hardest, is the little things that remind me of them.  I will never forget that precious life, and as Kayla grows old, I often wonder what he/she is like.  Especially with Kayla's younger sister on the way.

I have learned to not be defined by the loss of this child, though, but to embrace all he/she has taught me.  There is a reason for everything that happens, and I have tried to learn all I can from that bittersweet time in life.

One thing I am constantly reminded of, is what a blessing life is.  Each day we get is a blessing.  We don't deserve the next breath we take, and yet, we complain about....

My kid having one of "those" days
The dinner I burned on the stove top
My husband not getting home on time
The promotion I should have gotten
Feeling like I haven't accomplished anything all day being a stay at home mom
The cold we've had forever
The time we just don't get to ourselves anymore
The dates we don't get
The spouse we are still waiting for
Family and friends that just drive us crazy sometimes

And the list goes on.  I'm just as much to blame as the next person.  I'm not pointing fingers here!  I struggle with these things too.

"Do everything without complaining and arguing..."
"Be Thankful"

That sweet child is a reminder to me of those verses.

Surly if God is able to use a child I have never held in my arms to teach me some of those lessons I need to learn, I am forever grateful.

So with a heavy heart today, I still hold my head high and am thankful for knowing that precious life in a way I would have never imagined.  I know there are so many of you in the same boat.  So many that have had to endure this pain, and for that, I am sorry.  Please know you are not alone!

Until I hold you in you Baby K!

Thursday, September 20, 2012

20 Weeks, 6 days-a day to remember!

On this day at the same time in Kayla's pregnancy (1 day shy of 21 weeks), I was admitted into ER for pain that I can not even describe.  (Worse than childbirth....:)) 

At that point, we had no idea what was going on.  The doctors didn't.  They took a wild guess.  Ovarian torsion.  Super rare, but all signs pointed to it.  48 hours later, I went into exploratory surgery to remove whatever was growing in there.  My OBGYN has been doctoring for over 30 years, and had never had to do that surgery on a pregnant woman.  I'm thankful he had the skill to know what to do when that time came!

Kayla was a champ-she came out of surgery with her heartbeat as strong as ever, but my body decided to go into labor.  With some magnesium (yuck!), and other meds, they got my contractions slowed down (which had been about 2-5 minutes apart). 

We went home 5 days later, and bed rest became my lifestyle!  The next 18 weeks were another challenge, but one worth taking, as we met Kayla just 3 days after I was taken off all bed rest at 38 weeks.  There were so many days when I wasn't sure I would even get to hold her in my arms.  Then even if I did, would she be ok? 

The feeling of hopelessness-knowing there is nothing you can do but lay there and pray your body doesn't go into labor. 

Talk about some of the scariest days of my life.  My faith was tested right along side with my patience.  It was a "Daniel" experience.  An experience I hope I always remember the lessons I learned so that I never have to experience it again.

At same time, the amount of love and sacrifice that so many of my family and friends made to help us was so humbling.  I am so blessed to have such incredible people in my life. 

A special thanks to my amazing husband who took care of pretty much everything during that time, and to My mom and sister for being such amazing help.  Jenny for driving up from Boise to help take care of me.  To my mother-in-law who also made a trip out from Montana during that time.  Taryn and Cathy for driving up from Boise to visit.  And so many others who provided meals, stopped in for visits and took the time to call.

So here we are-one day past where that was, and I am so thankful.  For each healthy day, I will give thanks and praise the One who gives them to me! 

That's not always easy with a 2-year old running around (in the throws of potty training...).  But I can still choose joy and a positive, thankful attitude.

To Him be the Glory!

Friday, September 14, 2012

A few more adventures!

Hello blog world!  Remember me?  Sorry I have been MIA. Life has happened, and it's been a ride!

You see, the Kovanda's wouldn't want 2012 to be the first "normal" year of marriage would they?  Of course not!  The Lord has kept us on our toes.

Of which I am thankful.

I never want to be too content (that is a fine line), or complacent. That is a scary place to be. Ever read about that in the Bible?

We celebrated our 5th year anniversary (with a trip to Cabo San Lucas!!), and yet, because of all we have experienced in the past 5 years, I sometimes feel like we have been married 10-15!  And not in a bad way. I am just so thankful the Lord has brought us together to experience this life as a team. I surely couldn't do it without him!

So here we go on two more big adventures!

The Lord has blessed us with another child on the way, due to arrive around February 1, 2013. I can't believe I am already 20 weeks along. The pregnancy has gone pretty well so far. Sick for the first 16 weeks, and now I have developed placenta previa, but baby is great!!  Hooray!!

Kayla will be a big sister, and we will go from a family of 3 to 4!  We still remember our first, though and can't wait to meet him/her someday!

Gender reveal is tomorrow. Can't wait!

Ben is starting a new job on Monday. Another big change for him as well as our little family.   That will be for another blog post, but I am so proud of him for leading our family in this way. He is taking a road less traveled and really stepping out in faith, but I couldn't be more excited for him!

Deep breath. :). I think that's good for tonight.

Thank you Lord for the many many blessings you have given us!

Thursday, February 16, 2012


Relationships take work.  That's not new news, right?! 

I thought in honor of Valentine's Day this week, and a few things that have been on my heart, I would post about relationships.

We were blessed to be able to enjoy dinner out on Sunday without sweet Kayla (thanks Mom!), and we began mattress shopping.  I think I have decided I would rather shop for carpet.  :)

So, on Valentine's Day, we headed back to Spokane to try and finish the mattress shopping.  Sucess (or so we think, until we actually get the new bed!  We will keep our fingers crossed!)  We ended our day at The Old Spaghetti Factory (one of my favorites!), and Kayla was a champ all afternoon.

Anyway, on the way home, I was listening to a radio broadcast on Positive Life Radio, and they were talking about relationships. 

I am so blessed to have wonderful friends, family, and an incredible husband.  When things are good in those relationships, it doesn't seem to take a lot of work, right?  But when we start hitting some rough patches, or things don't quite go as we expect, all the sudden drama enters the picture, right?  Or am I the only one that this happens to?

All the sudden, we see the blaring faults and wonder how we got here AGAIN.  How did we get hurt by this same thing again?  How did we make the same mistake again?

Well, it should be pretty simple if we really think about it. 

We are two imperfect people trying to have a "perfect" relationship.  (This relationship can be with our spouse, friend, or family member)

Does our relationship with the Lord come easy?  I don't know about you, but mine doesn't.  It takes work, right?  Work to carve out that time to spend with Him.  Work to know what He is saying.  Work to know what He wants us to do.  It doesn't come easy. 

And that relationship has one perfect person in the equation.

So why should we expect our earthly relationships to come easy?  These relationships have TWO imperfect, sinful people in the equation.  Ever stop to think about that?

Interesting thought.  Thank the good Lord for grace, so that we can start each day with a fresh perspective, looking at these relationships with that in mind.  Of course it takes work. 

Work on myself.  Instead of expecting that person to be what I think I need in the relationship, am I BECOMING the kind of person they want to be around?

How do I do this? 

Colossions gives us a pretty good idea about what this should look like:

1.  Be compassionate
2.  Be kind (giving people what they need, not what they deserve),
3.  Be humble
4.  Be gentle
5.  Be patient (put up with those you would rather put down)
6.  Over everything else-clothe yourself with LOVE

How do we do this?

How do these become attributes we "put on" daily? 

The end of that passage sums it up-"let the word of Christ dwell in you richly"

I must spend time in the Word, with Him, for these to be characteristics of my daily life.

What a challenge!

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

The rest of the January Declutter list

How is your decluttering going?  :)

I know I gave you a pretty long list last time, and don't worry if you didn't get through it, because I didn't either.  I got side tracked on a few projects.  And that's ok! 

So here's the rest of my list for January:
  • Catch up on paperwork and year end filing (We were a couple years behind, so just tackle it, wherever you are at!)
  • Declutter file cabinets.  (Go through old files, and throw out papers and manuals you don't need)
  • Sort through all those "paper piles"  You know, the ones that sit there or get put in a drawer to "do later."  :)
It's a great time to go through paperwork to get ready for tax season, etc.   Plus, you will feel so much better about tackling your other projects if this one is done!

It's a blizzard here today, so what a great afternoon for a cup of coffee and some quality time with my files! 

Good luck!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012


So I found a great 2012 Declutter and Organize Calendar from

In thinking about keeping things "simpler" this year, I really liked this calendar.  It gives you a task a day that can be done in a short amount of time.  By the end of the year, you have gotten through a log of projects you easily put off!

So I am going to re-blog some of her ideas, as well as incorporate some of my own.  I'm hoping to come up with my own version of a Simpler, Decluttered 2012 Calendar!

As I stated in my last post, don't let the "list" bog you down.  If you have some things that apply, and you would feel better if you prioritized them, then do it!  If not, let it go, and have a great day doing the things you alredy have planned! 

She has hers listed one a day, but I am going to chunk them into a week or two weeks worth of time.  I know that I won't always do the "one a day" approach, but might do a couple items on the list in one day, and then none for a couple. 

Anyway, take it as you wish, and happy Decluttering and Organizing your life!  :)

January 1-14
  • Set up a place to donate items you are getting rid of (either for goodwill or garage sale)
  • Pick a cabinet in your washroom/entry way and clean out just the top shelf or one drawer
  • Declutter the top of your kitchen cabinets and dust
  • Go through old spices to discard expired and old ones (and get some fresh ones from your PC consultant! ;) )
  • Organize your "can" shelf.  Make it workable-do what works for you!
  • Go through your freezer to let go of old, freezer burned food
  • Declutter and clean out your nightstand (and the top of it!)
  • Clean out under the bed
  • Throw out the junk in your junk drawer
  • Organize your junk drawer
  • Go through and declutter your island (if you have one)
Have a great, productive (or not!) few days!  Please don't feel like a failure if you don't make it through the "list." 

Oh, and make sure you prioritize time with God, your sweet little ones, and yourself!  (I'm speaking to myself on this one too!)

Sunday, January 1, 2012

The Beginning of 2012

Happy New Year!  I really can't believe that we will start writing 2012.  I remember when they all predicted the world was going to end when we rolled from 1999 to 2000.  Where do the years go?

We just got back from a week vacation with the Morgan Family on Whidbey Island.  We stayed in a beautiful home that had an incredible view of the water and mountains.  What a fun way to bring in the new year! 

I'm not one for "resolutions."  I think I've tried before, only to feel like I failed when I look back and see what I didn't accomplish.  As with most of those that make resolutions, I think.

I always look forward to the New Year, though, as it seems to bring a fresh start to life. 

So often, I think of all that I need to accomplish in a year/month/week/day, and make my lists accordingly.  I get excited as I "check things off" the list.  One by one, the tasks diminish, until my page is all scratched off.

Then I start a new one.

Sometimes my projects and tasks never do get crossed off.  Sometimes, I just rip the page out, and add those projects that didn't get marked off to my "new" list.

Am I the only one that does this?!

Like I said, it can get easy to get lost in the list, tasks and projects for the day.

Instead, can I pause and remember the One who gave me the ability to...

wash the dishes
clean the bathroom
change a diaper
make a lunch
pick up toys
manage our finances
take care of our home
tend to the yard
pick up toys
make meals
call friends and family
teach lessons
encourage my husband
did I mention pick up toys? :)

...and realize that He doesn't ask me to make a list so I can check it off. 

He asks me to bring Glory to Him as I go throughout each task, praising Him for the ability to do what I can with the time, talents and treasures He has given me.

I pray I will do a better job of keeping this mindset this coming year.  It is hard, as the pace of life continues to pick up speed, trying to rob us of the joys that each moment brings. 

I'm sure I will continue to make my "lists."  But maybe I can have a different perspective.

Be still.  Stop and listen.  You just might hear a voice saying, "well done, my good and faithful servant," rather then the nagging voice of "how come you couldn't get that done?!"

Here is to a simpler 2012!