Fall Pictures 2019 (and NEWS)

Hello, our online family! Yes, all of you reading this. Though we don’t know you personally, and will most likely never meet most of you, you’re still are our online family. 🙂

So, as with all family, you share what you are going through and we’d like to share our latest news with you. We are so excited to announce, we are EXPECTING!! Yup, you heard that right. Baby number seven will be joining our family.

Family of eight people standing next to trees and landscaping.

your questions answered!

So, we get a ton of questions from you guys. From family questions to blogging to everything in between. I’d like to take this post to answer some of those. If I miss something, ask away in the comments below and we’ll answer them.

why so many kids?!

With our announcement of baby number seven, here are some of the comments we’ve gotten:

  • You guys are crazy.
  • Why so many kids?
  • How in the world do you support them?
  • You guys should have five more, your kids are wonderful.
  • Whatever the Lord gives, you have to accept them as his gift.
  • And the list goes on.

I’d love to take a minute to discuss these questions. I come from a family of 11, my husband is an only child.

When we had our 5th child, we thought we were done having children. When she turned four, we got rid of the baby things. Little miracle Elijah was unexpected (his story HERE).

Initially, I was closed to the idea of more children. But, even before we delivered I can just sense God stirring my heart. Something only God alone can do (because we take children very seriously). And here we are, sharing in the joy of another gift from above.

And this is the part that I really speak from the heart. It’s one thing to get pregnant (though I know there are many women who cannot conceive and my heart goes out to you), it’s another story to raise the child. Children need a Godly Father figure actively in their lives. The role of a dad in the home is unreplaceable. He will be the first image of a child’s perception of a Heavenly Father. He will be the example of how to love, respect and cherish a wife (something that the children will come to view as standard).

We so often discuss the importance of a Godly and active mother in a child’s life, and yes, don’t get me wrong, I strongly agree. We as mothers (and wives) can many a substantial impact on the lives of our children. However, there are some roles and responsibilities that can only be filled by the Father and Husband.

And that is why adding one more child means one more life we will be accountable for before God. We are incapable of being “perfect” parents, no matter how hard we try. We are very human and very flawed and will continuously make mistakes. However, with the guidance of the Holy Spirit, we are able to achieve far greater results.

kids’ reactions-

So, last year when we were doing our fall photo shoot, we announced we were expecting Elijah (post HERE). When we found out this year we were expecting again, we decided to tell the children and record their reactions just like the previous year.

We got to the part where we were taking our pictures and my sisters were lining the kids up to take a picture of them. My husband and I turned around with baby Elijah holding a sign, “promoted to Big Brother”.The kiddos were shocked, HA! They thought we were joking. Elizabeth was shocked the most. Our oldest, Benjamin, figured out we were expecting a few months ago, I have been so ill. Without going into the details, this pregnancy is a difficult one. (On a side note, if you’re going to make a sign that says “promoted”, be sure all the children know the word, lol.)

how do you run a blog?

A frequent question we get is how in the world we run a blog with all the kids? I like being transparent and open with you, so:

I don’t run this blog alone! This year, my husband went part-time with his business (he owns a roofing company) and he now works part-time alongside me. The many questions that answer evokes though, right? I’ll attempt to answer. His English isn’t the greatest so what he helps me with is the household things that I can’t handle alone while running a blog (and we all know things around the home never end). He helps with setting up all the equipment for videos and taking them down. He does a lot of the kids’ duties that I managed before (helps with appointments, school events, taking them to and from school) and the list goes on. Whatever he can do around the house to release me of work, that’s kind of what he does.

We love balancing life together, and NO, this is not for every family. Some couples just cannot work together. But, I am so grateful it works for us and we absolutely LOVE it.

We also have someone on our team that is almost full time as well. Her name is Victoria and she handles all the backend things for us. I consider her more of a partner than an employee though. She is local so she comes into the home and does the recipe testing with me, she helps me shoot the videos and completely manages our social media. (All the platforms, except Instagram. Though it’s our smallest platform, it’s my favorite and I manage that myself. I also answer all the comments on our blog.)

So grateful Victoria is a part of our life. She is such a huge blessing to our family.

Without her and my husband, we would not have a running blog. There’s way too much that goes into it and with six kiddos (almost seven), I would not be able to manage it (or our children would be lacking mom in their life and that’s not an option).

Three boys posing for a self portrait.

Lastly, the question we get most often is how we balance everything?

I may dedicate a whole post to this answer one day, it’s a loaded question. I’m all about being organized (OCD overload). I like to know what we are doing and how we are going to do it.

We try to have everything completely finished (workwise) before our children come home from school so we can dedicate our evenings to them and their events. Elizabeth is taking violin lessons, Nathan does chess club and engineering and the boys do basketball, and they are involved in church events. So, ye, they keep us busy.

No matter how hard I work, I can work harder with greater results. However, what helps me keep things balanced most is knowing we have a greater calling in life than our blog.

As a wife, my top priority is God, then my husband, then our children and everything else after that. Keeping that in perspective really helps with keeping a balanced life.

exciting happenings on blog-

Well, that was a larger post than expected. Now that the questions are out of the way, I’d like to share that we are finishing up our first EBOOK!

I need your input for our next EBOOK. Would you be interested in something that has all Ukrainian classic recipes, or one-pan meals, or the most popular recipes on the site now but in electronic book form? I’d love to hear what you want to see next. As soon as this one gets published, we will start on the next one.

I hope you enjoyed our 2019 Fall Family Pictures, our family updates and the answers to your questions.

Thanks for visiting, friends.

We so appreciate all of you. Without you, this blog would not exist. 🙂

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  1. As parents of 8 children (Oldest is 32 and youngest is 15), we can understand. Hubby was also an only child and I was from a family of 7 children. Your children are absolutely beautiful, by the way, and I wish you nothing but health and blessings. By the way – I LOVE your blog.

    1. Thanks for the encouragement, Debbie. We are so happy to have you a part of our online family.
      We will take the blessings. Wishing you and your family the same. May your children (though much older than ours) always respect and cherish you as parents.

  2. Huge congratulations! Praying the pregnancy gets easier and everything goes smoothly. Thank you for sharing with us such special and exciting news in your family.
    Excited for your eBook! For the next one, maybe one-pan meals? That sounds great for busy mamas! And HUGE YES for Bible study!
    Again, congratulations and may God bless you!

    1. You are so sweet, Victoria.
      Thanks for the input on future ebooks, your ideas are noted. I’m thinking we could do a really creative study on a particular topic. Something I’ll have to pray on brainstorm about putting together. I’m glad to hear I’m not the only one that would find that useful. 🙂 Have a most blessed weekend.

  3. Wow I just read your post and the previous one of baby Elijah and it brought tears to my eyes! You guys are an amazing family such great Godly examples! May God bless the rest of your pregnancy and delivery and of course the new baby!! And btw already made a few of your recipes and we love them!! Can’t wait for the new Ebook ?

    1. Thank you, Marinochka. We try the best we can (but we are very human and flawed, promise, no different than you.. 🙂
      Thank you for trying our recipes. I seriously cannot wait for the release of this ebook, it’s going to be so neat.

  4. What a beautiful blessed family!! Love you’re recipes and reading about your family and faith!! God is great!

  5. I wanna encourage you that GodS plan is the best for us, I love you’re family and you’re blog. Me and my husband are praying and waiting for a baby more than 7 years and We hope that God will do a miracle in our family. I know many people are saying bad staff about family’s with more kids but they don’t realize how hard is to want to have a child and you can’t. May God continue to bless you’re family and you’re health to be able to bring a healthy baby on this world. Many blessings

    1. Sveta, your comment just touched a sting of my heart like no other (crying BIG tears). I am going to add you and your husband to our prayers (I am part of a prayer group and we will pray for you there as well). If you come back to read this reply, please email me, I’d love to share something personal with you. valentina (at) valentinascorner.com. <3

  6. Congratulations! What an exciting season in your family!! May God bless you and the baby that you are carrying. Definitely yes to the Bible study – something family oriented would be great! And more simple and healthy recipes would be just the thing for us busy moms 🙂

    1. I like where you are going, Oksi. I think a Bible study would be really neat, even thinking of possibly a FB group where we can all be more open with discussion. It would be awesome to learn from each other as we are all in different seasons in life and can share some wisdom. 🙂
      Simple and Healthy recipes sound lovely. We’ve really been changing our diet and that would be a GREAT ebook, me like! =)

  7. Congratulations! So many kids is definitely not for everyone. It’s wonderful to hear your husband helps so much too! May God bless you and your family.
    I think it would be cool to have an all traditional, Ukrainian meals EBOOK to have it all in one place but I think it would be better to have those quick meals considering everyone’s busy life styles. Thanks for sharing!

    1. Yes, Vita. 100 percent agree and I hope that point was understood in the post. We can have 15 kids but if the dad is completely absent and mom is struggling to stay sane, what good will that do?
      We are really going to focus on easy and quick meals this upcoming year on the blog itself but I’m really considering an ebook as well. Easy meals and classic Ukrainian/Russian recipes both sound wonderful.

  8. Seriously your family is thee cutest! What a beautiful family! May God bless this journey and may all your sickness subside ?

  9. Out of curiosity why do keep having more children? Is it because you don’t believe in birth control or you just personally want a big family? I have four kids and soon to have five so I hope I don’t offend you or n any way by asking it’s just curiosity if I had the income I would personally have six and maybe seven, lol,, I love a big family soooo much. I really admire you as a women and a mother keep doing your thing. I would like to see more parenting advice on here please and thank you!!

    1. Elizabeth, thanks for the question.
      Unless you are having children every 11-12 months until you hit menopause, there is a form of contraception involved (even if that means counting the days or anything else natural, you are still refraining from conceiving :)..).
      We both really wanted a big family. Though I strongly believe that is NOT for everyone, we are really so humbled and feel privileged God would entrust us with raising, guiding and shaping 7 humans that will one day go out and made a difference in the world (by God’s grace).
      About money. If you are wise and shrewd with the finances you have, they can go a LONG way. 🙂
      Is it easy, NO. Are there days I just need to leave the house for some quiet or else I will go bananas, YES. Overall though, it’s an amazing journey. I hope that answered the question.

  10. Congratulations!!!! You’re a great role model for your children, may God bless your growing family!
    Love your blog

    1. I’m not sure about all that, we just try our best. Many blessings to you and your family as well. Thank you for the ebook vote.

  11. God Bless you and your beautiful family. I am so happy for you.
    Congratulations 🙂

  12. Hi Valentina, congradulations with another baby! .. about food- with the advancement of technologies to help us lead easier lives (lol) maybe more recipies of Instapot healthy meals, quick meals


  13. Congratulations! What wonderful news:). I am so happy for you. Babies are such a blessing and a gift from God. You are so wise and I really enjoyed reading this post.
    What beautiful pictures of your family. You’re children are really growing so fast. Thank you for sharing your exciting news. May God bless your pregnancy and delivery.

  14. Congratulations! May God bless you, the child you’re carrying, and the rest of your family. Wish you a blessed pregnancy, delivery, and a healthy child!
    Valentina, I love your blog and especially enjoy reading your personal posts. I have made many of your recipes already and whenever I feel like cooking something “new”, I come here to browse:)
    I’m a mama blessed with a loving husband and two beautiful children. Caring for a toddler and baby 24/7 is definitely a challenge. When hubby comes home in the evenings, I’m happy to have much help, but find myself “too tired” for hubby.
    I’d love to see a post about what you do to keep the spark alive between you and your husband. I love reading your posts on faith, they are so incredibly inspiring and definitely give me something to think and pray about!
    As for the ebook, definitely some quick/healthy meals:)
    Sorry for the long comment!
    May God bless your beautiful family<3
    P.S. You have such beautiful children

    1. Thank you kindly, Katelyn, so sweet of you. And thank you for giving our recipes a try.
      When I was a young wife and mom (yes, I can say that we’ve been married for almost 17 years), I was so exhausted with being a mom and there was nothing left of me for my husband and it really affected our marriage (just being transparent). You can read THIS post where I share ideas and reasons behind why a husband should come before the children. I hope it will give you inspiration for your marriage.
      Thanks for the feedback on the ebook, very helpful.
      It’s comments like yours that inspire me to keep posting and creating, I so appreciate the comment. 🙂

  15. Congratulations Valentina on your new baby news!!!!!! Loved reading your blog & enjoyed seeing pictures of your family! (Your baby boy is so precious;)) and the rest of the family looks great! Be blessed!

    1. You are too kind, Kate. Thank you for the kind blessing. He is so loveable, the kids say they will not be able to love another baby as much as they love Elijah.

  16. May God bless your growing family even more with each day and His guardian angels protect you in all of your ways! Thank you for what you’re doing. I love your recipes, they are easy but so wonderful. Keep going, guys! We need you 🙂

    1. From the bottom of my heart, thank you for such beautiful words, Lily.
      I’m so happy to hear that our online home is enjoyed. 🙂 🙂

  17. Congratulations and happy for you. Personally I love big families . May Lord bless your pregnancy, delivery, and recovery.
    My mother always tells me if God sends a child, He will provide for a child.
    What i found out, doesn’t matter if it is you’re having child # 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, or etc. people will always ask you common questions, why so many kids, how you will support them financially? Like those people who asks those questions are supporting you financially, lol.
    Once again, happy for your guys and may Lord bless your family.

    1. Ha, Nika, enjoyed reading your comment. It’s okay though, I’m not offended. I like being open and would rather they ask and not think I’m nuts and not ask, if that makes sense. Each of us will have a different journey to walk and it’s neat to see how the pieces all fall into place for all of us.
      And, yes, He sure will provide. So thankful for that.

  18. congratulations that’s great news so happy for you God bless you and your baby and your beautiful family

    1. Thank you so much, Innochka! Now that the worse is behind me and I actually feel like I will survive this all, I am very excited :).

  19. I have 2 kiddos, my boy is 32 (10 1/2 lbs) and my girl 31. I was an only child so the hardest part of parenting, for me, was understanding all the quibbles between them!
    You’re amazing! Bless you and your family. Jesus is so wonderful in so many ways. Anxious to see your newest addition, I know you are too. Life is so amazing. Will be praying for you.

    1. Catherine, you’re so sweet and kind. Thank you for the blessings, we will take it. Many blessings to you and your loved ones.
      P.S. My hubby was an only child as well, I come from a family of 11 so I cannot imagine what life would be like as an only child. 🙂