Fran the (cold) Cat

Thousands of you have asked about what happened to Fran (the cat) during our weekend ordeal. Here is the story: Remember when David the 2nd King of Israel was just a Shepard? He used to spend his days guiding sheep to green pastures and leading them beside still waters and slaughtering bears and lions. If he had a sheep or lamb that had the tendency to wander off he would take the little sheep and break its leg off. The idea was that if the lamb didn’t die or convince all the other sheep to headbutt David to death, it would have to stick close its caregiver. David had the right idea I think. When we got home on Sunday, the temperature in the house was nigh on absolute zero. We were 30 seconds from having achieved a scientific impossibility in our very own rental home.

Lindsay wouldn’t even hang around because it was so cold, she took off without her phone and with our only car that would function in that kind of cold. After Lindsay left I searched for Fran but she was nowhere to be found. Eventually she emerged from under the covers of our bed shaking like a leaf. Keep in mind that she already has a fur coat on all the time. If she had enough warm blood to supply the necessary energy to her hind legs she probably would have leapt directly into my arms. I picked her up and felt her paws and they were ice cold. After a while of holding her I set her down but she would hardly let me take two steps before starting to meow and trying to trip me. I spent most of the next hour or so holding her and breathing warmth back into her. We got to cuddle with her the rest of the day and well into the night because our house didn’t get warm until evening.

The moral of the story is that if you want your cat to love you and be really affectionate just turn off the heat for a few days.

Here is a photo of Fran practicing staying warm tonight.



what does negative temperatures cause?

A cold day in the neighborhood. The weekend we were at Bay Harbor we had record setting temps. It was –6 on Sunday at noon!

We had left for the weekend and turned down our heat. Well, because our house is a little drafty our pilot light blew out on our furnace. This caused our heat to not turn on and led to our pipes in our radiator freezing!

So it wasn’t as simple as relighting the pilot light and turn on the heat. It took about 5 hours and a plumber on overtime to get it fixed. Then at about 10pm we had a pipe break in our entry way and water from our radiator gushed out everywhere. I’d say about 10 gallons came out pretty quickly.


What had actually happened was our thermal coupler when bad. The plumber came and finally fixed it today.

You’d think in this video I would have stuck a bucket under it or something, but the major damage had already been done in the first 10 seconds and truthfully I didn’t think about it until just now! Smile

I did have to throw out my homemade rice sock air blocker!

Water pouring out of the heater.

…. and that is why we are so thankful we are still renters!


Weekend away

… and I forgot my camera.

Tim and Rachel came up for the weekend and we spent two nights at the Inn at Bay Harbor. It was very relaxing and didn’t cost us an arm and a leg. This hotel is part of Boyne USA (where Marvin works) so we got a sweet deal. We love playing cards and usually focus around the game of ROOK. Tim and Rachel are the only ones who own ROOK cards and so it was their job to bring them… they forgot! And ROOK cards are the hardest to find. They stopped at a few places but no luck. In a last ditch effort they stopped at a dollar store/consignment spot in Kalkaska. They had an OLD box for $2! What a steal!  So if you see ROOK cards anywhere pick them up and I’ll pay ya back!

Other weekend highlights include:

  • eating out for dinners
  • making breakfast around noon
  • staying up late and chatting
  • painting our toe nails (girls only)
  • eating chili at the cook off (boys only)
  • playing ROOK until we dropped!

It was a GREAT weekend and we are looking to many more good weekends in February.

Stay tuned for: Weekend with the Verwys’, Weekend in Chicago, Weekend in Ann Arbor for a Michigan Game, Weekend with the ole’ high school crew (MCV)… and then we will be into March.

…I’ll try to remember my camera!


Tree... no Three!

Marvin has taken to speaking with a Mexican English accent.
Watching Napoleon Dynamite didn't help any either.



Happy New Year! This past year was a whirl wind for us! We are so thankful for where we are now and how far God has brought us this past year. We are blessed with wonderful jobs. We live in an amazing location in the USA and not too far from family!

This past week my parents came up to visit. My mom and I worked on a jewelry board.



That cute white one on the right was a hand made gift from Betsy!

We also celebrated Christmas with my dad’s side. My Aunt and Uncle live in Charlevoix so it only made sense that my parents come up here for the holidays! My mom and dad surprised the heck out of us with some awesome snowshoes. We love them and tried them out tonight with a 3.5km hike on one of the snowshoe trails here.

Later in the week we received our gifts from Nate and Andrea. We were not able to spend Christmas with them this year…maybe next year!

Marvin is sporting his new shirt…which he has been wearing ever since he opened the package 3 days ago…Lindsay is wearing her oatmeal miffins and adorning her new personalized bag.


For New Years we thought Marvin was going to have to work all night but he ended up coming home at 5pm. So we decided to head to Traverse City for the Cherry-T ball drop.


While downtown Lindsay discovered what her spiritual gift was… getting picked for things in large crowds. She was one of 10 chosen to let loose a canister of confetti at the stroke of midnight!


Before we went down town we enjoyed a night out at the Olive Garden (I had $20 in gift cards) and then a shopping spree at Target!

Marvin has been on this entrepreneurial streak and thought about selling glow necklaces downtown. So…here’s how we ended up.





We made it ‘til the cherry dropped! Happy New Year!


May your year be filled with blessing and may you bless others along the way!