Gigi Blog » The life and loveliness of Gigi's World

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  • Welcome to the Gigi Blog!

    Blessed to be a mother to five charming girls. Wife of an undertaker.
    Photographer. Homeschooler. Daughter of the King. 
    Lover of life, coffee and all things pink and vintage. ♥

Five Days Old.

Just popping in to post a photo of our little flower girl … she’s doing so well … we’re bonding and snuggling and baby-wearing and just enjoying this lovely stage of newborn-ness … it never gets old! It is so wonderful to have a sweet baby to hold and to share this experience with all the girls – they each are loving holding the baby and cuddling her …

Lavender … five days old …

April 22, 2014 - 8:11 pm

Sherry Varkel - Oh My Goodness!!!! Congratulations!!! I am so happy for you and Abby and the girls! Abby always said he wanted 6 girls and here they all are! :) I love the name Lavender, very pretty! She looks very much like Lyla.
I hope you are doing well and may God Bless Lavender and her amazing family! <3

April 22, 2014 - 5:13 pm

Jen Heemskerk - What a little doll! ;-)

April 22, 2014 - 2:02 am

Mara - Love her beautiful hair!

A Full Day with Lavender {and five happy little girls}

A day spent snuggling and enjoying our newest baby in the family … the girls follow Lavender around like they are tied with strings to me … they each want to hold her, kiss her, love her and watch her every move … even little Leia, who is just a week shy of turning two years old, loves her baby with an energy that certainly must be monitored.;)

 

{beautiful blanket crocheted by my grandma}

It also was Abby’s birthday today so we celebrated the joy of children and birthdays all rolled in together …

 

She certainly is a delight … I love that Lacey picked such a name for her middle name … it is fitting …

 

Lyla, especially, is loving this baby oh so very much. “Mommy, it feels like I have my own baby … I feel like a mommy,” she said, as she was rocking and holding Lavender so sweetly. “I think we should all have our own babies to love … but not Leia … just the big girls …”

 

And now again, I must go rest… The day was beautiful and sweet, but I must keep my strength up.
A happy Easter for our family. May you, too, find joy this Easter weekend.

 

 

April 21, 2014 - 6:14 pm

Heather - Lovely little Lavender :)
She looks nearly identical to my Emily at that age… thick, black hair and a tiny button nose. So blessed.

April 21, 2014 - 3:01 pm

Tawnia - Beautiful <3 Congratulations to you all :)

April 19, 2014 - 9:44 am

Annie - Beautiful. Congratulations to you and your family!

April 19, 2014 - 7:56 am

Claire - Awh so WONDERFUL! What a beautiful family! xo

April 18, 2014 - 10:56 am

Jen Heemskerk - Looks like you have another Lyla!! Love the photo of her laying n the purple blanket with the little bow in her hair. Makes me want another baby!;-) So adorable! Your girls are so beautiful…love seeing all of the many combinations that God gives you! Congrats again!

April 18, 2014 - 3:08 am

Mara - Six little ladies! Congratulations! A beautiful addition to your ever so beautiful family.

April 17, 2014 - 11:03 pm

Teresa - Adorable :) all that hair is just georgeous. I had seen the post of her birth and name but now I don’t see it…. what is her full name again?

Welcome, Lavender…

It’s a beautiful day to be born!

 

In the early hours of this cold, spring morning, our sweet baby decided to enter this world … with the amazing help of midwives, my husband, mom and best friend, the labour and delivery were just as we had hoped and prayed … and God blessed us with our sixth baby girl, welcomed into our house in the comfort of our home …

Our little girl weighed a beautiful 5 lbs. 12 oz and has a beautiful head of dark hair. Her hair is lovely! It is so much like Lyla’s hair, which is wonderful as she hasn’t yet had a sister that resembles her …

Welcome to our family, Lavender Kate Delight …

You are wonderful, precious and a treasure from the Lord! We are all so thrilled to have this sweet little girl join our family…

 

 

{just a few photos from our day today…
introducing the girls to their new sister in the morning, cozy in our own home was just a blessing.
I’m so grateful for another gentle home birth! it was wonderful to surprise the girls in the morning with such a great present!}

 

 

 

 

 

And now I go rest – we are all so happy and delighted with our little treasure from Heaven … thank you, Lord, for your blessings and protection over the delivery and safety of our baby!

 

 

 

April 21, 2014 - 6:11 pm

Heather - Oh wow! So, so, so thrilled for you! Another perfect little girl!
Congratulations! Praise God.

April 17, 2014 - 7:49 pm

Lauren - OH GILLIAN!!! Lavender is beautiful! Congratulations to you all, she is gorgeous! God is so good!

April 17, 2014 - 4:52 pm

Teresa - What a precious gift from God….. she is such a cutie…..you are so blessed ~ 6 beautiful daughters of the King…. She is sooooo adorable….

April 17, 2014 - 3:32 pm

Tara C - Oh wow! The dark hair!!
Another beautiful girl! You are truly blessed!! :)

April 17, 2014 - 3:23 pm

Courtney - Oh my goodness! Congratulations on the birth of another little girl! Love her name!

April 17, 2014 - 12:53 pm

Sonya - Welcome to the world, Lavender :) . Looking forward to meeting you soon!

April 17, 2014 - 12:14 pm

Joyce - She is beautiful! Seeing your lovely little family warms my heart and brings a huge smile to my face. Congratulations!

April 17, 2014 - 12:11 pm

Monica - Congratulations on the blessing that is Lavender ! Praise The Lord all is well!

April 17, 2014 - 11:08 am

Lynda Lu Gibb - An awesome blessing in your lives , one to be loved, enjoyed , nurtured,, hugged, teased, chased,played with,prayed with, and above all,guided to love God with all her heart. You will have a blessed life while doing all these wonderful things…Congratulations!

April 17, 2014 - 10:25 am

Erin Lynn - Congratulations!!!! There is just something indescribably sweet about six little girls. She is just gorgeous! Jesus bless her little life.

April 17, 2014 - 7:37 am

Lauren - That hair! And oh they’re all so precious together. Congratulations!

April 17, 2014 - 7:18 am

Jen Heemskerk - Congratulations …She’s beautiful. So glad that you were able to have her at home and the way you wished! God is so Great! What a nice way to begin a morning with news of a brand new gift from the Lord-You are so blessed!

April 16, 2014 - 11:56 pm

Rachel - Oh my goodness! Little Lavender! Congratulations!!! <3 Much love from Arizona, USA. :)

April 16, 2014 - 11:32 pm

Kim Robbins - Congratulations Gillian, Abby and the L’s! What a wonderful surprise to wake up too!! Welcome Lavender!!

April 16, 2014 - 11:32 pm

Devon - congratulations on another lovely little girl!! I’m so happy to see these beautiful photo’s!!! What a beautiful angel!! can’t wait to get a wee snuggle with Lavender!! xoxo

Pregnancy Update {37 weeks}

 Surely the righteous will never be shaken;
    they will be remembered forever.
They will have no fear of bad news;
    their hearts are steadfast,
trusting in the Lord.


Psalm 112:6,7

 

I truly would never want to live without God in control.

Just a little pregnancy update … last week started with some rather unexplainable bleeding, followed by a slow-moving tiny, baby and an ultrasound that picked up an irregular heart beat. From there, a little bed rest was thrown in, we were bounced around from hospital to hospital to the midwife clinic with ultrasounds and non-stress tests. {Should I mention that all five girls were and are still sick during this week? From problematic midnight nosebleeds to vomiting on our bed in the middle of the night to feverish foreheads and lethargic children … } Then un-expectantly,  on a warm Sunday afternoon during the midwife’s home visit, we were told to pack a hospital bag and head to the local hospital where we would start labour … we searched out newborn sleepers and threw what I could remember was needed into a tiny pink suitcase and headed to the hospital. Kissing the girls good-bye and telling them they’d have a brother or sister soon, we jumped in our black Suburban and headed in the opposite direction of my plans for a home birth.  It all seemed rather crazy. The baby was not in distress, but it was felt that perhaps it would be best to get ‘baby out’ due to size, unexplained bleeding and the heart arrhythmia that was recently discovered …

 

As it turns out, since the ultrasounds predicted the baby to be under 5 lbs., an induction would not be possible unless we moved to a higher level hospital, hours away from our home. After many conversations with the doctor and our midwife, knowing I have a history of having small but healthy babies (two babies were in the 4 lb. range, two were in the 5 lbs., and one was 6 lbs.) a lot of praying and talking it through together,  we decided to wait, to go home and see where God leads this pregnancy. We really won’t know too much about the arrhythmia until the baby is born …

 

Just spending the past week with so many appointments and hospital visits and facing the fact that decisions needed to be made regarding the health of our unborn baby – all of this gave me a much bigger respect for those parents who have or are dealing with major issues in their pregnancy or relating to their children’s health. I’m grateful for a sense of peace over the last few days and knowledge that God is in control, despite what anyone says, what textbooks say or suggest or what medical ultrasounds may predict. We are not aiming to be foolish with our decisions but rather react in faith instead of fear.

 

We are excitedly awaiting to hold our little baby in our arms when God sees fit… it will be wonderful.

April 19, 2014 - 9:35 am

Annie - Oh Gillian. Hugs. And more hugs. And sending positive energy your way… Hoping all is well and that you’re girls are also on the mend. When it rains, it pours seems appropriate for your week!! Wishing you tiny healthy cuddles soon-ish :)

April 16, 2014 - 10:39 am

Tawnia - Congrats Gillian and family!

April 16, 2014 - 10:32 am

Lynda Lu Gibb - Your faith and trust proved what God blessed you to know! Congratulations, another miracle to guide along in God’s world. Blessings abound!

April 16, 2014 - 9:52 am

sherri smith - We are so glad baby girl #6 arrived safely and you are well also. A huge relief and blessing. Love & Hugs from both of us.

April 16, 2014 - 2:25 am

Brenda - What a great picture of you two lovebirds. xo

April 15, 2014 - 1:14 pm

Erin Lynn - Praying for you and baby!!! May God continue to give you His peace through the rest of your pregnancy and a safe and joyful birth. My fourth girl and fifth baby, the doctors scared my poor husband so much with their concern that she was small (I’ve always had six pounders, though except for my son). She was fine and is such a blessing. Praying for your little one and his/her precious heart to be healthy and well.

You Don’t Go to School?

So … along with hundreds of other parents and students,  I attended the nearby annual homeschooling conference this weekend.

Take a guess at what this post will be about?

You got it. Homeschooling.

Not only did I come home with a fresh pile of Math books, language curriculum for next year and inspiring ideas in my head, I also came home very much encouraged and renewed. Like most very-pregnant women with lots of children to care for, I reaaaallly didn’t want to take the 1.5 hour drive to the conference, walk around all day on sore, tired feet and spend more money on math.
No, I just wanted to stay home and rest.  Maybe read a book or bake some cookies and do a little pregnancy nesting.
But it was so worth it to go.
To be encouraged and renewed and inspired in this wonderful journey of homeschooling.

And it leaves me wondering why don’t more people consider home education as a choice for their family?

If you have ever considered homeschooling – or perhaps you are just not sure of the regular public school system and have questioned the way the system works or does not work – why not actually find out some information about home education?

We started homeschooling when my eldest daughter, now 10 years old, was entering grade one. She looked at me, simply and quietly, and said, “But mommy, why can’t we home school?”

Hmmm. Well, I knew it was something I had always thought about doing, but never thought I could do it on my own. I come from a rather non-traditional educational background myself so throwing my daughter into the public school system was something my husband and I had already agreed we would not do. Instead, we had chosen a small, Christian school for our children instead.  Until that morning …  when my daughter asked me if I could school her at home.

 

With a quick prayer and energetic zeal, I said,  “Sure! Let’s try this out!”

Needless to say, we’re four years (almost five) into this home-educating thing and I love it.

But please know, I’m not just throwing this out there all covered with sugary-pink icing. No, home educating is not always easy, it’s not always fun and crafts and glue and happy days, but it certainly worth every moment invested into such a lifestyle.
It’s a full time job in many ways {isn’t mothering supposed to be full time anyways?}.
My mind never shuts off, thinking of ways to further our day with art, wonderful living books for reading, math skills and facts, grammar rules and piano scales, figuring out why one daughter is struggling in her work and making sure there’s enough time to hear the new reader make her way through her collection of books, incorporating the sticky, gluey-fingered preschoolers and still finding the energy to teach another little one to memorize her vowels and sound out her words … but it’s WORTH IT.

Oh, mothers, it is SO very much worth it!

The time I have – the time you have! – with my children is short. We are given a small window of ticking time to nurture, love, care, and, perhaps if you are willing, educate our children. Although a seemingly daunting task, I was more than excited to take on the role of educating our daughters. I knew it would be hard (and it is – like anything wonderful!) and tiring but it also means I can invest so much more time into their lives … something that spoke deeply to my own heart.

 

 

 

 

Just for fun, here’s our Top 10 Reasons we love home educating:

 

1. We get a day off when daddy is home. Since his schedule is sporadic and he usually works weekends, we work around him and it’s wonderful!

3. Intertwining our faith and values into our learning style.

4. Hot meals at lunch time on cold winter days.

5. Reading our books together by the wood stove with hot chocolate in the winter or … sitting together on a picnic blanket, reading our books outside in the sunshine during the warmer months.

6. Ditching the textbooks and running outside at the first sign of spring to do our nature journals. [Don't worry - we still finish up the school year - but we do spend so much time outside once the sun starts shining.]

7.  Solving math problems with jelly beans.

8. Never having to worry about snow days, no bus days or getting up early to catch a bus or drive the children to school in good or bad weather.

9. Spending the best part of the day – their energetic, waking hours – together as a family.

10. No homework assignments!

11. Knowing home education can truly work – statistics prove it.

Oops, that was 11 – but truly … I could go on … it’s not always easy to home educate. It’s a lifestyle choice, it means sacrificing some ‘down time’ and using it in other ways, it means a messier, noisier house some {most} days and it requires better planning and organization, letting things go and saying no to the busy schedules outside the home that make it impossible to get through all the book work -  but it is saying yes to shaping your own character as a mother (what good is a teacher who is impatient?), pulling your family closer together and in turn, perhaps bringing a sense of unity and peace to your home.  While we school, I can see where my child struggles – academically and character wise – and help the immediately with their problems. The sisters bond together easier because they are accustomed to sharing, giving and helping. There are so many positive aspects to homeschooling …

 

Let me encourage you to think about it – to pray about it. To perhaps, give it a go? It’s not for everyone, I understand that … but maybe, just maybe,  this upcoming year is the time to start for those who are ready for the adventure to top all adventures!

 

April 8, 2014 - 11:19 pm

Erin Lynn - Totally agree. Love, love homeschooling! I am a second-generation homeschooler. Something I might add, is my mom always was so worried that we were not doing enough, that she didn’t do a thorough job, that we were not staying up to grade level, etc. Be encouraged, homeschooling moms! Although when I went to college, I took on my mama’s inferiority complex, and was so worried I wouldn’t keep up with the other students,it didn’t take long to realize that I was doing just fine! I became an RN, all to Jesus’glory. So, all this to say, work hard with your kids, and pursue excellence in homeschooling, but trust Jesus to fill in the gaps.