October through December 2007

October 2 thru October 7
Well, after a few final touches we were able to enjoy our first fire in the new wood stove. The warmth is really relaxing and the flames are quite fun to watch too.

Continuing our drive to complete the first floor before our little one arrives Kristan started painting the banister. At this point we have two coats of primer and we'll soon be ready for the glossy coats.

After all that meticulous work it was time to relax a little outdoors. Nothing like moving little stumps around or making the spinners ring out with a .22 to ease some tension.

Back inside the flooring is starting to make some progress. We got the hallway done so now all the complete rooms are connected.

In the last days before a solid freeze Sunday night we got a telephone line buried and punched into the house. Hopefully we will soon be able to have an extension of the radio station's telephone system in our house.

The woodpile grew some more this week and it is good to see the progress in getting ready for winter. The winter is surely coming as witnessed by the layer of ice on our pond this morning. Soon the ice will be here to stay.

October 8 thru October 14
Well it was definitely worth the wait. Our island counter top was available for pickup this Friday. Here Kristan is unwrapping it, it's a perfect match.

Here Kristan is puting a glossy coat on the banister and Karl is getting started on the flooring for the big room upstairs.

The flooring was the biggest deal this weekend. Lots of little cuts to fit up close to doorways, cabinets and tilework.

Working together we got more than half of the room floored Sunday afternoon.

Sunday we got our first real snow but most of it was gone by the time we got the camera out. It was a warm day and everything turned to slush. The pond is still frozen although the finish on the top has some of the melted snow making it a little rougher.

October 15 thru October 21
We've got VFCM board meetings coming to KAGV during the second weekend in November. This year VFCM is going to take some time out to celebrate the amazing ways God has worked through VFCM in 2007. The plan is to have a party the Saturday before board meetings. Since we don't know for sure how available we will be in this particular time frame we are hoping to get as much as possible prepared ahead of time. Dave and Karl worked to clean up our lower floor where we hope to setup a refuge for kids that have gotten a little too cold with the outside activities. Lots of vacuuming before setting up.

Upstairs we finally finished the flooring. It looks nice and it is great to have it completed.

Saturday we went to Nenana for Kristan to attend her baby shower and to get a vehicle with a snow plow so we can keep things passable here at KAGV. The road conditions left a lot to be desired, especially in this rear wheel drive pickup. Here is a shot of the road after the sun came up and the road finally was clear of the slippery snow ruts.

Coming back South was a much easier drive. Passing through Denali National Park all the tourists have migrated South for the winter and all the shops are boarded up.

Back home Kristan got to sort through the many gifts we have received. From little hats to diaper cakes and everything in between all the gifts are appreciated.

October 22 thru October 28
As we get to some of the finishing stuff upstairs things are really shaping up. Here we are getting started with the wall cabinets in the kitchen.

One of the biggest hesitations with the wall cabinets was the over the stove microwave. Getting the exhaust properly routed through the weall and getting solid support weren't that straight forward but it worked out nicely.

Finally the cabinet over the fridge and the kitchen has come a long way.

This last week the outdoors has changed quite a bit. A few weeks ago we experienced the darkest nights of the year. In October before the first snow fall and without a full moon the darkness is extreme even though it isn't as enduring as those long January nights. Here you can see that we've got our snow and now with a full moon, the night is all lit up. Also with all the snow comes work, here Karl is trying to keep the pond in shape for the ice skating that is planned for the VFCM clelebration in a few weeks.

November 5th
Kristofer has joined us!!!

"Kristofer" - bearing Christ inside, after his mother well named by her parents "Kristan" - anointed Christian
"Rudolph" - after his father, grandfather and great grandfather
Born 12:38 PM November 5th 2007
Weighing 6lbs 3oz
20 inches long
Sorry that our e-mail announcement was confusing, with the explanation for the first name spelled wrong. His name is Kristofer (with an "F")

November 6 thru November 10
Well on Wednesday were were allowed to leave. You can see how happy we were. This is Kristofer's first ride. Back at home things are going well as we search for a new routine. Kristofer keeps teaching us something new each day. In this picture Kristofer is getting his nails trimmed for the first time.

At the radio station board member and treasurer Glenn Fawcett has been making amazing progress at finish work on the KAGV studio facility. Ceiling tiles and light fixtures replacing bare drywall and work lights. Amongst the many improvements Glenn installed a kitchenette in the conference room upstairs.

Saturday was the big celebration we have all been looking for. VFCM took the time out from the rigor of our daily work to celebrate how God has been working with and through us this year. Snow started falling heavy just as people started arriving. This meant the men had to get together and work clearing the pond before the skating could begin. The kids really enjoyed the skating/sliding/snowball fighting.

For dinner we had great cooks bring us some very delicious Philipino food, everyone really enjoyed the time eating and visiting together. The kids had the opportunity to watch some Veggie Tales and Winnie the Pooh down stairs where Karl and Dave have set up a miniature theatre for the kids.

Kristofer got to be seen by many for the first time and Brian got to "see" Kristofer as well. Kristofer really seemed to be calmed by commotion. As a special treat we got to celebrate the year with t-shirts for staff and families.

Well to finish the night with more than just a bang, Gorilla Fireworks (our local fireworks dealer known for the dancing gorillas seen up and down the highway around the 4th of July) gave with incredible generousity to help us celebrate!!!! We had close to 20 minutes of beautifully lit up skys.

This photo was taken without the use of a flash. The glow isn't just on our faces. Thank you Lord for how we can be part of your plan!

November 11 thru November 19
This week's update has a lot of pictures of Kristofer, being the most photogenic part of our lives right now it just follows naturally that he is gonna hog this website for a while. Here he is with Mommy in the kitchen (you'll notice the dishes are in those new cupboards). Here he is attending the November board meeting in the open session on Monday.

Now for a little posing, as if he wasn't cute enough on his own. Here he is showing his pride in his uncle Christopher. Here Kristofer is taking some time out to make some performance modifications to his car seat, luckily all that was necessary was the little 3/8" wrench because he seemed to find this tool just the right size.

Taking a break from the excessive cuteness, here Dave and Daddy are working to clear a tree that had fallen across a nearby snowmobiling(AKA sno-go) trail. The trails aren't quite set up yet so getting the firewood back to the house had some interesting challenges.

Back at home you can see that the master bathroom has made a little bit of progress. Here Kristofer and Daddy found a moment that wasn't filled with eating, changing or sleeping and they took the opportunity to read together.

November 20 thru November 26
Well now all three Thiemes work at KAGV. Kristofer has accidently shown extra courage and debuted on-air. Here Kristofer is realizing that he doesn't quite fill daddy's office chair, but it made for a good ride up and down the hall.

At work we've had three extended power outages this week. Much effort has gone into repairing and fueling the big generator that keeps the transmitter going, but the little red one at our house is quite dependable. Another reminder of the great volunteers who helped us with our house in 2006, great foresight to wire our home for backup power.

The abundant power outages prompted us to install some emergency lighting so we can make our way safely to the generator and electrical panels to get everything switched over to backup power. This light had only been installed for 30 minutes before it was in use for another power outage.

Thanksgiving was a good time of relaxation. Here Kristofer is video conferencing with Grandma "Neen" on Thanksgiving day. The turkey took its time cooking but was quite tasty, Kristofer is looking forward to a Thanksgiving where he can taste it for himself.

Around the house Kristofer is finding new conveniences like travelling in the sling with daddy and sleeping all by himself in the cradle his grandma made for his daddy to sleep in.

These last two pictures are just to top off the cuteness. Where did these long toes come from, certainly not mommy? Working at KAGV, some of us get more rest than others.

December 6
One of our friends is in critical need of prayer. Elisha Blair is one of the children that is part of this ministry. He as well as all his family are personal friends as well as co-workers. The day after Kristofer came to us, Elisha underwent open heart surgery to repair a heart condition. While recovery was looking good they recently found some bleeding and he and Laurie (his mom) were life flighted to Seattle to have the necessary procedures to repair this bleeding. When the first procedure was performed more information was found that now shows that another major surgery is required and that the odds of success for this procedure are not favorable to Elisha. We ask that you would be praying for this young man. We ask our Heavenly Father to show His glory through healing Elisha. Here is a link to a website with a journal on Elisha where you can sign up to get email notification as his progress is updated http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/elishablair . The Blair family website (for a little background on their work with VFCM) is located here http://www.polarblairs.org/.
Surgery is planned for the middle of the day today, please petition our Lord and Father on Elisha's behalf.

November 27 thru December 11
Thank you for praying for Elisha. He is recovering from his surgery well. You can still check his website for the latest updates. Another procedure may be necessary and the time when he and his mom can return to join the rest of the family in Nenana is currently unknown.

We are adjusting to the new schedules and our web updates have suffered. We apologize. We have been having fun and learning a lot in the process. Karl's parents have come to visit and enjoy time with Kristofer. This winter is getting off to a slow start. The snow came and went twice already. There have been plenty of power outages. Karl and Grandpa Tom spent plenty of time fixing fuel leaks to get the station generator operational again, while Kristan and Grandma "Neen" kept the woodstove fueled and cared for Kristofer in the dark.

With Kristofer tucked carefully into a sling under his daddy's Carhartts all of us went for a hike. In addition to enjoying the time outdoors we managed to find a good Christmas tree on the land near our house.

Grandma and Grandpa spent plenty of time enjoying, reading to and soothing Kristofer.

A bit of Christmas came early for us when Grandma and Grandpa brought their weather system for us to have at our house since they are getting a newer one for the farm. Last year we were able to detect the outdoor temperature by the height of the frost coming in the door of our ATCO cabin. This year we are snug and warm inside our house and often surprised by the temperatures when we step outside. We've been watching all the new information we have and just in the last 24 hours we've gotten another chance at winter with 6 inches of snow. We'll be watching the weather station to see if this is the snow that will stay with us.

December 12 thru December 17
It is with very heavy hearts that we have to let you know that Elisha went to be with his Lord last Thursday. My first reaction was that his homegoing was so unfair, but I realize that God has blessed me with knowing Elisha here in this life for 4 years and I'd much prefer to know him for 4 years here than not at all. You can get more information on Elisha's passing on his website. Thank you for lifting our little friend up to the Lord with us. Please continue to pray for his family.

Here are some pictures of Elisha with his little sister Michaela. He is tying shoes on top of a roll of satellite cable as we prepare to fly to McGrath with his dad to re-install the broadcast equipment there. In this second picture I believe he is feeding me grass, much like an animal at a petting zoo, while sharing a pony ride on my shoulders with his little sister. We look forward to playing together again.

Winter is here. Our weather station will hopefully get a better mounting location next year. Until the winds get strong I don't expect much wind data.

The facilities over at the transmitter site don't look too inviting in this weather. Up on the top of the tower you can see bits of snow came to rest on the joints.

The sun always makes a nice display of the snow. On Saturday I was surprised to hear song birds. Their songs really stand out in the black and white world.

Here Karl is demonstrating the inverted football carry. Kristofer is growing. He works hard at it with all the eating, squirming and sleeping.

December 18 thru December 25
On Wednesday we drove North to Nenana to be part of the memorial services where Elisha's life and God's faithfullness were celebrated. It was -17F when we started our drive from Houston and -48F in Nenana. Our car performs quite differently at these temperature. The odd things like the exhaust freezing to cover and plug the tail pipe were new to us but we kept safe and warm in our little Tercel.

Both Brian and Laurie shared at Elisha's service. We thank God for the strength he has given this family and the testimony they are to us and others. After the actual service we stayed and enjoyed a potluck with everyone. Michaela enjoyed getting to know Kristofer and got to show her dad how she was able to console Kristofer to stop crying.

Back at home we decided to fight some cabin fever and all went for a snowmachine ride to collect firewood. With Kristofer bundled up, we worked together to chop up and haul a tree that had fallen on a nearby snowmobile trail.

Christmas Day
We took the day slow . Kristofer seemed to only be able to handle so much wrapping paper at a time. Here he is looking on as mommy does some of the unwrapping.

While mommy and daddy had their doubts about the big plastic jungle mobile from Papa, Kristofer was entranced. Here Kristofer is practicing grabbing Mortimer Moose.

Cinnamon rolls always are a added bonus to Christmas. After all that indulgence, Kristofer was just plain tuckered.

December 26 thru December 30
This week's update is pretty much Kristofer dominated but that is a rather accurate description of the week so no apologies.

The front packs are a great way for Kristofer to get out and about. Here Kristofer is trying on daddy's hat. Somehow it seems to be difficult to keep the carrier out of his mouth.

Don't we look alike? At least the cheese is genetic. Here Kristofer is taking his first lesson in flying.

You haven't seen many updates with progress on the house because there hasn't been much progress. Here we did make a little progress by getting knobs on the cabinets in the kitchen.