Tuesday, November 17, 2009
We love the name Kale, but I kinda have this thing against one syllable first names. It isn't that I don't like them, it's that they don't go with the flow of our other children's names(Lucas, Raylen, Treyson). So, before we even came close of picking a name we knew that it was going to be a two syllable one. We talked about name after name, but Kale was the one that we kept coming back to. We tired to elongate that to a longer name and came up with Kallen. Buuuuut, that spelling would be mispronounced and it also looked kinda girly to me. Hence the name Kellen. We love both Kellen and Kale so I'm sure we will call him both, kind of like we do with Raylen(Ray) and Treyson(Tres). Not that you care about that whole story behind the name. I just thought that I'd explain it just in case any one got confused.
So, you got the name, the explanation behind the name, and assurance that I am still alive and haven't given up on blogging or Treyson's Purpose. Since I have broken my blogging silence I'm sure that I will be more motivated to post more often.
Now, if I could just finish painting the baby's room....
Saturday, September 26, 2009
Got any baby boy name suggestions? Send them my way! The only rule is: don't suggest a name that you wouldn't want me to actually use. By that I mean, if the name is still on your list for a possible future child, then don't suggest it. I wouldn't want to snatch your baby name. :) But for those of you who are done having kids, or have some cool names that you like that have received the husband veto, then let me hear 'em!
Friday, September 25, 2009
I was very pleasantly surprised though. The counselor was extrememly nice, and we actually walked away from the appointment feeling like we knew a more than we did before hand. She explained that the problems that Treyson had could possibly be linked to a bad gene in either Josh or I. If both Josh and I have the same bad gene that caused Treyson's problems, then we have a 25% of reoccurence in this or any future pregnancy. That may sound like alot, but, that is our absolute highest odds, and most likely they are much lower than that. And no, they can't test Josh and I to see if we have this bad gene because there are thousands of genes and they don't know which one to test. She also said that it may have not been caused by a bad gene, it could have been caused by something as simple as an interruption in blood flow to the baby some time between 10 and 30 days after conception. I know that may not neccessarily sound like good news to any of you, but for us it was good to know. When you've been in a situation like ours where nobody can really give you any answers because no one has any answers, any news is good news. My mother in law said it perfectly, "When you find out all the things that could possibly go wrong with a baby, it is a true miracle that so many babys are born perfectly normal."
The next appointment was the ultrasound. It was a precautionary appointment, just to be on the safe side. Everything up to this point has looked just right with the baby with no reason to think otherwise. The ultrasound went great. The doctor pointed out the kidneys(which were both functioning perfectly), the stomach, and the bladder. He measured the volume of amniotic fluid and the level was great. The brain and spine looked and measured normal. The arms, legs, abdomen, and head all measured right on target.
We breathed a big sigh of relief and were simply estatic. Praise the Lord for a healthy and very active baby. The doctor then asked if we wanted to know the sex of the baby. Um, yeah!! I don't think I have the patience and self-control to not know.
So the doctor took a look and said, "It's a girl."
Josh and I both said, "We knew it!"
(We though we knew it because a friend did an ultrasound for me at 15 weeks and the baby looked most definitely like a girl.)
My mother in law, who was with us was like, " Are you sure?"
(She has a knack for predicting babies and even though she hadn't said, she thought we were having a boy.)
The doctor kept looking around and paused over something and said, " I'm going to have to change my mind. It's a boy."
WHAT?! It didn't matter to Josh or I one bit whether it was a boy or a girl, but we had already gotten in to the girl mindset after my previous ultrasound. So when the doctor told us(and showed us) that it was a boy we were both SHOCKED. It felt like finding out that I was pregnant all over again!
We left the appointments very estatic about our healthy baby boy! I have to go back for another ultrasound in a month for another look at the baby's heart. I'm telling myself that the doctor is just being cautious and needs a closer look(even though Treyson's heart was perfectly fine), but truth be told I'm a tad bit nervous.
In spite of the bit of underlying worry, my spirits aren't dampened at all! Baby Boy( who has no name yet because we thought he was Baby Girl), is a healthy little wiggle worm. I thank you all so much for your prayers!
Now to find him a name....
Thursday, September 17, 2009
1. We don't always get along.
I know that comes as a shocker to most of you...ok well, maybe not. I think any one with common sense knows that all couples argue at least every once in a while. Josh and I actually do get along most of the time, but we have had our share of bickering and even a few knock-down drag-outs along the way. We've yelled and argued,(Some times in front of the kids, even though we said that we would never do that). We've gone to bed mad,(Even though we said that we would never do that either). And we've said things we don't mean. (Like when he called me demanding and said that I want all my demands to be met immediately. I know that he didn't mean that. (*wink*) And then there's the time I told him that if he did not stop talking this instant that I was going to hit him with a baseball bat. We laugh about it now(and we actually laughed about it then too), beacause we both know that I didn't mean it...sort of.) So yes, we do fight, but no, it isn't very often.
2. We spoon.
When it comes to bed time we're like two spoons in a silverware drawer. We rarely fall asleep without being atleast mildly intertwined. This, folks, is true marriage adaptation, beacause we didn't exactly start out this way. I'm the touchy feely one who likes to cuddle and hold hands, and Josh, well, not as much. And to top it off, he's hot natured and I'm not. So when we first got married I stuck to him like a leech and he was less than thrilled. But in just a year's time he began to change. I guess he realized that I wasn't scooting over, so he better learn to sleep with me attached, or function in life with out sleep. Now he unkowingly reaches for me in his sleep if I'm not right beside him. *smile* And he can't fall asleep without me. *sigh* Sweetness, eh?
3. We laugh. Alot.
Josh is hilarious. His sense of humor is what won me over(another story), and he keeps me laughing today. He is gifted with the art of finding humor in almost any situation. The ability to laugh hard and often has made a huge difference in our marriage. No matter how irriated, or upset, or sad, or mad I get, it usually only takes a few comical attempts on his part to have me laughing again. What a great quality!
4. Josh is an encourager, and I'm...not.
Josh is such a good encourager. It truly is one of his gifts. He is my daily encourager in all the little details of life. He is always telling me that I'm a great mom and wife. Even though I know that I fall short in so many ways, he never cease to find ways to encourage and lift me up.
Now me, well I'm just not good at the encouraging part. I really try to make an effort of encourage the kids, but Josh tends to get the short end of the stick with my efforts in this area. I guess I figure that he knows that I think he is an awesome husband and dad and that I love an appreciate him. Why else would I be trying to hold his hand all the time?! (Can you see the two different wave lengths we function on?)
Last but not least,
5. We love each other.
Yup, we do. We really really really really do. May sound sappy, but it's true. I totally and completely love him with all my heart. And I know with 100% certainty that he feels exactly the same way. We're a team. We fit together like two puzzle pieces. No one else could fit with me the way he does.
These five things are just a little glimpse into who Josh and I are as a couple. There is a whole lot more that could be said, but I think I'll keep some things to myself. If I flaunt what an awesome catch I have then I may end up having to fight some girl for trying to steal my man. *heehee* (That laugh was a sorta funny sorta evil laugh, because I'm really not kidding about the fighting thing...if I had to.)
And now, to Josh,
You're my blessing in disguise.
And I hope you don't mind
that I put down in words,
how wonderful life is
now that you're in the world.
Come what may,
I will love you until my dying day.
All my love,
P.S. I hope you like your new yo-yo. :)
Friday, August 14, 2009
But now I've gone off and chased a rabbit. Back to Daddy Gross Bug, er, uh, whatever his name is. Anyway, while it was the tune that originally attracted me to the song, it was the lyrics that ministered to me. I only caught about the second half of the song, so when I got home I went straight to the computer and looked it up. Thankfully the DJ said who the artist was, or else it would have made my search somewhat more difficult. I searched the song and the video came right up. Gotta love that youtube! Once I watched the video I was shocked that it ministered to me also! I really only watched it because I wanted a chance to listen to the song again.
The past year and a half has been a very difficult one. Losing Treyson completely ripped my heart out. We have also have a parade of other difficulties that seem never ending at times. While life has been stressful, difficult, and full of heartache the past year and a half, I haven't felt the despare that I have felt when I was in a different place in my life. The recent heartache in my life hit when I was firm in my faith and walking closely with the Lord. That does not diminish the pain, but did give me a firm foundation to fall on, even if I felt like I was falling face first every single day, over and over again.
While I have been a Christian since a young age, I did chose to wander from the Lord about a decade ago. Ok, I didn't actually wander from the Lord, I pretty much ran as fast as I could. I guess stepping away from my close walk with the Lord may have started as a wander, a meander of sorts. Once I felt the sting of blatantly being out of the Lord's will for my life, I took off to running away full force. I spent the next several years of my life in that state. I won't go in to the details of what my life was like then at this time, I can sum it up in one word.
Webster defines "desperate" like this(when I said I was a lover of words, well, definitions are words, so I really like definitions too.): desperate: Rash, violent, reckless, and without care, as from despair; intense; overpowering.
I can't speak for anyone else's experience as to what it feels like to be a Christian that has purposely stepped out of His will, but as for me that is exactly how I felt. I was a child of God that had run to far away, that when my life came crashing down around me, I felt as though I had no one to turn to. I knew that the Lord was there waiting for me. But I felt too dirty and undeserving to turn back to Him. That feeling is utter despair.
Of course in time, I did wise up and take steps to mend my broken relationship with the Lord, the memory of that pain has never faded. I am actually glad of this fact, because it is humbling to remember where the Lord has brought me from.
Ok, now I feel like I've used way to many words, to explain how and why a song ministered to me. If you are still hanging in there with me, you are quite a trooper. I've posted the lyrics, just because they remind me where I've come from. I've also posted the link to the video. If you completely hate rock music, then I don't even suggest giving it a try. But if you have even a little bit of an open mind, then maybe the Creepy Bug Dude can minister to you too. Never underestimate how the Lord and choose to speak to you. If I were a betting gal, which I'm not, I'd bet that Papa Bug never intended this song to have any true spiritual value. But the Lord chose otherwise. At least in my life any way.
Here are the lyrics:
(quick side note. I sometimes find the meaning of lyrics difficult to grasp without hearing the music also. I guess that's another hint that maybe you should watch the video.)
If you would like to watch the video, click here.
Oh, and if you do watch it keep watching when you think it's over as to not miss the F.D.R. quote. You know I love me some quotes!
a quick p.s. The scene on the building where the desperate man is being pursued by another man and the pursuer yells out, "I'm never gonna fade away!", perfectly portrays the scene in my heart when I chose to quit running away from the Lord, and turn back and run towards Him. Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good! His love endures forever!
Wednesday, August 12, 2009
We have actually known for quite awhile that I was pregnant, but chose to keep it under wraps this time around. I guess after having Treyson I felt more like keeping it to myself for a little while. I don't in any way want to give the impression that since we have been more private this time,(not even telling the majority of our family until now), that we aren't excited and happy. We are VERY excited. The emotions are just a little different this time around. I kept telling myself,(and Josh), that I wasn't worried about complications, but I guess I needed a little time to convince myself.
This pregnancy is going great though. For the first month and a half or so I was constantly sick and tired. In spite of the discomfort, I actually found this encouraging. I felt like it was God's way of reassuring me that I was very much pregnant. And boy, I have felt very much pregnant. More so than with any of my previous pregnancies. The nausea and fatigue have improved the past couple of weeks, but I'm still struggling with the issue of no food on earth sounding appealing the majority of the time, but then if I don't eat I get nauseated. A bit of an impass, eh? But what a glorious impass to be at! I am so dreadfully excited about this new baby that all the nausea, weird smells, fatigue, and overactive emotions in the world couldn't damper my spirits in the slightest.
Back to how I know this pregnancy is going so great though. Apart from the hormone induced problems, and, most importantly, an incredible peace from God, I have other proof that things are excellent. I've had two ultrasounds. One at 7 weeks, where I saw a bean with the most beautiful heartbeat in the whole entire world!! And one at 9 weeks, where Josh and I got to see a very squirmy, kicking, arm stretching little baby!! Both our jaws dropped in amazement at the sheer awesomeness of it. (Not sure if "awesomeness" is an actually word, but i'm going with it anyway.) I also had my first actual doctors appointment at 11 weeks and I'm measuring great and the heartbeat it strong and perfect. Things couldn't be going better! We just can't stop praising the Lord for His goodness and constant reassurance!
I will be going to see the specialist at some point in the next few weeks, so I will of course give you an update after that appointment, but as of right now things could be going more perfect with this baby's development. Thank you all so much for all your prayers. I can't tell you enough how much they mean to me. Honestly, what nicer thing can you do for a person other than lift them up in prayer? I can't think of one. And also, thank you all for being so genuinely excited and happy for us. It makes my heart smile to read your sweet words of congratulations. God is good, in spite of our circumstances in life; whether good or bad, happy or sad, how we want things to be or if things are the opposite of how we want them to be, God is still good. But we are full of praise that He has chosen to grant us such a wonderful blessing. Praise the Lord!
Tuesday, July 28, 2009
But tonight I feel greedy. I know, that given the opportunity, Treyson wouldn't change the outcome of his life. He is perfect and living in perfection with Jesus at this very moment. He wouldn't come back here, even if he could. But tonight I want to change things. I want him back. I want to hold him. I want him here. Now.
He would be 13 months old right now if he were still alive. Just starting to walk and talk and discover the world in a whole new way. I feel cheated that I'm not getting to experience this. I'm not getting to watch him learn and grow. I'm not getting to love him here on earth like I feel like I should. I know that God doesn't make mistakes, and I in no way do I think that He is to blame. I just really really miss my baby. I would give anything to be able to hold him again, even for just a minute, and tonight it is breaking my heart that I can't.
Saturday, July 11, 2009
Wednesday, July 8, 2009
Day 3 :BEACH!!
Ray and Daddy building a sand castle.
We caught 68 hermit crabs that day. I just had to take a picture because I thought I would never catch that many again.
That's what 68 hermit crabs of various sizes looks like.
Day 4: Shilitterbaun
This is Luke doing the boogie boarding ride. He did great! I was so proud!
Me and Ray
You know how I said I took a picture of all those crabs because I thought I'd never find that many again? Well, we found 150 this day. Yup. ONE HUNDRED AND FIFTY hermit crabs.
And here is one of the bigger ones. Cute little things, eh?
The kids and Josh in the pool
Luke with a giant cookie from McAllistar's
Our resort at night(view from the beach)
Ray and Daddy
This kiddos on the last day when we were about to head home
We had a great time and would most definately go back. We got and EXCELLENT deal on our resort($80 a night, instead of the usual $182 dollars a night. The resort made a mistake online, but chose to honor the price we booked it at.). We were so blessed!
Monday, June 15, 2009
I also thought that while I was posting pictures, I'd throw in a few from when Ray was sick. This was pre-hospital when she was actually her sickest. Pitiful, isn't it?
Thursday, June 11, 2009
Yup. A tattoo.
I had it done about a week and a half ago. It was one of my life goals. (I can actually see my mom cringing at this very moment. Not because I got a tattoo, even though she wasn't thrilled when she learned about it, but at the fact that getting a tattoo was actually one of my life goals.) Not just any life goal, but in the top FIVE of my life goals. My number one life goal, that goes without mentioning because if you know me you know that this is a absolute given, is to whole-heartedly follow God's will for my life no matter where it leads or what He calls me to do. That goal is so far first in my life that it isn't even apart of the 5. I know that if following Christ is my number one goal in life, then I don't have to put things like, "being a good wife", or "being a good mom" as goals. Following Christ obviously calls me to do and be several things that are so basic to my Christian faith that they go without mentioning. My top 5 goals list is more of a personal thing. It is things that I personally would like to accomplish before I die. If Christ calls me to something otherwise that doesn't include my personal goals, then I am completely fine with. Each of my personal top 5 will be bathed in prayer before I attempt to acheive any of them....as was the tattoo.
I know, I know. You have probably never heard of someone praying about getting a tattoo...but I did. I prayed for over a year about getting a tattoo in general and I prayed for over a month about the exact tattoo that I got.(My mom probably has permanent cringe marks on her face after reading this.) Any way, back to praying about tattoos.
The tattoo I got gently expresses my pro-life view. It is something about myself that I know is permanent, so why not permanently express that on my body? Okay, okay. I know that I just opened myself up to a huge Biblical tattoo debate which I do not wish to engage in, so I think I'll just change the subject back to my original point with was my top 5 personal life goals, not whether or not you think tattoos are Biblical.
My other 4 life goals are:(in no particular order, because honestly there isn't a particular order)
1. Write a book
2. Adopt a child
3. Surf in Hawaii
4. Be a missionary to a foreign country
It makes no difference to me at what point in my life any of these goals are reached. In every step of each individual goal the Lord's direction will be sought, so the outcome really isn't left up to me. I CAN tell you that accomplishing two of these four remaining goals is already in the works. But I'm not going to tell you which two. I am still praying for God's guidance as I decipher His will from my own desires. I am pretty sure that in the next couple of months I will be sharing with you about one of these things and asking for prayer. But until then, I guess I will just have to leave you waiting and ask for prayer in general.
Love you all.
Sunday, June 7, 2009
Saturday, June 6, 2009
Monday, May 25, 2009
Family members include:
My Grandy, who served in WWII and after as a Colonel in the Army Air Corp(before there was an Air Force).
My Pawpaw and several of his brothers who served in the National Guard.
My cousin, Kirk, who served in the Navy.
And especially to my best friend of 13 years who is currently serving the the United States Air Force.
Thank you, Captain Daniel Hall.
Tuesday, May 19, 2009
Uh, thanks. But you might want to re-check your list and make sure that the baby lived for more than one hour before you go sending them formula and all. Sheesh.
Anyone need a can of Enfamil Next Step formula with iron? You are more than welcome to take it off my hands.
I don't think I'll be needing it.
Monday, May 18, 2009
(I tried to get a chicken free picture, but they were swarming me. There was a whole flock at my feet that you can't see.)This tree was given to us several days after Treyson was born by our good friends, Kris and Heather . I can't even begin to tell you how much I love this tree!! There are so many special things about this tree. First off, it is a crepe myrtle, so it blooms every summer. It will start blooming right around Treyson's birthday and stay blooming for several months to follow. Neat, huh? Also, the blooms are pink, which is Treyson's modern birthstone color. Even neater, huh? And third, it is planted in my back yard in a place where you can see it out of any of my kitchen windows. Why I look in to my backyard(which I do about 6 thousand times a day. Not because I am obsessed with the tree, but because the set up of my house lends itself to looking out the back windows 6 thousand times a day....and I seem to spend alot of time in the kitchen.), my eyes instinctively go to the tree, and then proceed to wander around the rest of the yard that can be seen from the kitchen. I love that the tree is always there for me to see. So tangible. The thought has crossed my mind what I would do with the tree if we ever moved to a different house. The thought of leaving it behind is unthinkable and I've all but decided that I'd be willing to pay just about any sum of money to have the tree moved. No place would be home without it.
Now I'm not getting all eastern and trying to say that I think Treyson lives through the tree, or that the tree is somehow a part of Treyson. I just adore that as the years go by, I have a living, growing, changing reminder of a child that I didn't have the opportunity to see grow and change. I've told Heather several times how much I love the tree, but I don't really think she realizes how much I LOVE THAT TREE. Heather has been such a wonderful friend to me from the very beginning of this journey. She is always there, but never pushy. I don't know what I'd do without her.
Well, I need to run. You can only keep a captive audience when talking about a tree for so long and I think I'm pushing my time limit. Also, I just looked out the window to find that Luke is playing some kind of baseball/fetch game with one of the chickens. They both seem to be enjoying themselves, but I'm not sure how safe it is for the chicken.
Saturday, May 16, 2009
Even though I am not ready to share those thoughts and emotions(even with myself), I would still like to begin share some of Treyson with you. I stay super busy(don't we all??), so I know that if I have the opportunity to blog real quick right now, then I need to take advantage of it.
Like I said earlier, our house is filled with reminders of Treyson. I did that on purpose. When you love someone very deeply, denying that they existed would hurt even more than reminders that they did exist but are just no longer here with you. I like that every room in our house has some little reminder of Treyson, even if that reminder is inconspicuous(pardon me for butchering the spelling. I know what is means, I just don't know how to spell it). Over the next couple of weeks I would like to share some of those reminders and keepsake with you. There is no way that I could share them all, nor would I want to. Every mother knows special things about her child that no one else knows. So as a mother I want to hold some of those in my heart just for me.
This first picture is of something very precious to me. (On a side note, you will probably hear me say that about everything I show you. But that is just because they are all treasures to me.). After Treyson passed away a friend of the family made a cast of his hand and had this priceless treasure made for us.
That is Treyson's hand. Isn't that just amazing? If you look real close you can see how long his fingernails were. He was born desperately needing his fingernails trimmed. It was one of the many perfect things about him.
The mold of Treyson's hand has it's own special case, but it sits on top of the armour in our bedroom. The only time we packed it up in its case was to evacuate for hurricane Ike. I was not about it leave it at home.
This next picture is of another item that was packed up and brought with us for our evacuation.
My mom had this little box engraved. I just love it. It also sits up on top of my armour. The lid comes off and this....
Wednesday, May 6, 2009
Tuesday, April 21, 2009
-C.S. Lewis, "Prince Caspian"
Mama(surprised): Why not?
Ray: I pooped.
Mama: Why did you do that in your diaper and not in the potty?
Mama: Because why?
Ray: I pooped. It stinks.
Mama: I know it stinks, but why didn't you do it on the potty?
Saturday, April 18, 2009
Tuesday, April 14, 2009
"I CAN'T BELIEVE WHAT YOU ARE TELLING ME!!!"
He then proceeded to ask me about 9 million times if we were really really really going to the beach tomorrow.
When I told Ray, she just waddled(the cloth diaper makes her waddle) around saying,
"Beach. Beach. Beach. Going to beach. Beach. Beach. Beach. Going to beach."
Needless to say, I'm pretty darn excited about digging my toes into the sand tomorrow. I know most of you are thinking, "Our beaches are gross!"
But when the beach is in you, well, it really doesn't matter. Like I've said before, I feel like a fish out of water when I go for too long with out being at the beach. So honestly, it doesn't matter the condition of the water, I just need to breathe again.
Here is link to a little song and video. I like Jack Johnson. He's a surfer that lives in Hawaii, and his music has that beachy sound I love. Enjoy.
Thursday, April 9, 2009
Here are the rules:
1.Link back to the person who gave you the award.
2. List seven things you LOVE
3. Link to seven blogs and let them know you have an award waiting for them on your blog.
Like Jennifer said, I'm not going to list my husband and kids, or any family members for that matter. Heck, I'm not even going to mention God. I love them dearly and deeply, but my seven things are going to be more random and silly things that you might not know about me. So, here goes...
1. I love the beach. (okay, so I didn't start out with an unknown revelation, but I just couldn't not mention it.) I love everything about the beach!(another quick side note. I don't actually love EVERYTHING. I don't like thinking about sharks when I'm surfing. I don't like it when a bunch of dead fish wash up and it makes the beach stink like...well, dead fish. I also don't like it when oil gets spilled in the water. And I really don't like it when people litter. But I'll shut up now because this is a LOVE list, not a gripe list. Besides those previously mentioned things, though, I really do pretty much love everything about the beach.) I love the sounds, the smells, the sand, the water, surfing, sandcastles, watching the kids play.....the list could literally go on forever. I also love anything that reminds of me the beach. Beachy colors, any thing that looks like it would be in a beach house, and beach paraphenalia. Needless to say the beach is a part of me.
2. I love the show Big Brother. When it is on, my world revolves around it(probably not quite so much now that we have DVR though.). Even when it is kinda trashy I can't help but watching it. I guess the reason I love it so much is because I think of it as the epitomy of reality tv. I know it is somewhat edited, but still, it seems to get down to the nitty gritty of who people really are and I love that. No secrets. (Another contributing factor probably is the fact that I read George Orwell's "1984" over a decade ago but the whole creepiness of the whole big brother thing always stuck with me.)
3. I love being outside. Now that spring is here I find it very difficult to get my inside housework done. I want to be outside as much as I possibly can. It is causing quite an issue with things like, getting the dusting, vacuuming, and toilet cleaning done. Oh well. Soon it will be too hot to spend the entire day outside and I'm sure that I will have more than enough time for housework.
4. I love texting. I'm not much of a phone person when it comes to talking, but I can text my head off. My brother-in-law and I always joke about who has the fastest thumb. I do, of course, hands down. When Josh and I started dating we texted each other several HUNDRED times a day. We still use texting as a mode of communication. At times we even still text each other when we are in the same room.
5. I love my chickens. No seriously. I really really love my chickens. It all started when I was a young teen. We lived in a country town. My dad went to the video rental store to get a movie and came home with a baby chick. (that's kinda how it works in the country. The honest to god deal was, a free baby chick with a movie rental.) So, we named her Peck. She was an awesome chicken. She acted more like a dog than a chicken. Our family had a big garden at the time and every kid was required to spend 45 minutes a day pulling weeds and working in the garden. Peck as like a litte side kick. She would follow me while I worked, eating worms and grass and just being a little sweet heart. So when Josh and I got our first batch of chicks three years ago, we were lucky enough to end up with another little mother hen like Peck. When our dog had puppies the hen used to sit in the kennel with the puppies whenever the mama dog was away. Needless to say...I'm in love with chickens. I know that some people find them creepy, but I absolutely LOVE being a chicken farmer.
6. I love hot tea. Josh and I drink hot tea every single night without fail. I drink green tea in the mornings and sometimes in the afternoons, and then in the evenings we drink herbal tea. It's just our thing, I guess. It would feel weird if we didn't do it. Same routine every night. Josh says, "You want tea, babe." I say, "Yes." He says, "Big mug or little mug." I say, "Big mug." Always the same exact exchange. I guess that's marriage for you.
7. I love my best friend. More important than my right arm. More memories than a Tolstoy novel. Enough said.
Here are the seven blogs I am honoring:
1. Rachel at Time for Little R and R
2. Allie at Salad Days
3. Amanda at The Hoyt Family
4. Hollie at Everything Changes
5. Erika at Musings From a Stay at Home Mom
6. Jennifer at A Journey of Love and Faith
7. Well....there isn't going to be a 7. I can do this how I please, right?
Tuesday, April 7, 2009
Wednesday, April 1, 2009
Now that the Lord has been transforming my heart it has been both a blessing, and a curse. I have come to realize that as Christ's love fills my heart, along with it comes a burden.
I've found myself so very heavy hearted for the lost around me.
I've found myself weeping and broken over the pain of virtual strangers.
I've found myself consumed to the point of near frensy trying to help those that some times don't even want my help.
Agh! It can be so frustrating at times!
I was telling my wise confidant whom shall remain nameless, that I don't know if I'm cut out to work at the Hope Center because at times I come across people with deep hurts, and I take it to heart so much that it is almost more than I can bear. I don't know if I get too involved emotionally, or if investing your emotions is the most excellent way to minister. Either way, I'm invested, and my heart is breaking.
So, to close this, I have two things weighing heavy on my heart right now that I would like to ask you all to fervently pray for:
1. There is someone in my life needs the Lord and I have seen evidence of the Holy Spirit working in their life. Pray for salvation for that person and their spouse.
2. I have a family that I want you to keep in your prayers. It is the family of one of my clients at the Hope Center. She is very young and trying to decided whether or not she is going to have an abortion. She is in much emotional pain, as are her parents. It is taking much retraint on my part to give her space and resign myself to just pray for her.
Thursday, March 26, 2009
Earlier this morning I was doing Bible with the kids. Ray would not be still. She's only two, so I don't expect too terribly much from her. The problem was that she wouldn't be quiet. She kept talking and interrupting. Finally I yelled,
"Sit down and be quiet during Bible!!"
No sooner than the words were out of my mouth I realized the irony. ooopps!
After Bible I was reading other books to the kids. One was a kids silly song turned in to a book. Half way through the book I couldn't help myself and just started singing the book to the kids instead of reading it. After about 3 seconds Ray looked up at me and said,
"Mama, Mama! NOOOO! Ma, just read."
Not even my kids like my singing. Oh well. I guess I can't blame them. I don't even like it. When I sing with the radio or a cd I usually try to turn it up so loud that I can't hear myself.
And the day continues....
We were getting out of the car at Basic Foods and Luke said,
"PawPaw and Grandma",(which are my grandparents) "can park in handicap spots."
"Yup, that's right.", I said.
"Can they park in regular spots too?", he asked.
"Yes. They can park in both kinds of parking spots.", I answered.
"Wow! I sure wish that we were handicapped!"
Tuesday, March 24, 2009
Anyway, I wanted to share a picture from last weeks devotional, and a quote from this weeks. They don't pertain to each other at all, but I liked them both....so here you go.
Ewwww! Pretty scary, eh? I am terrified of sharks. It struck a chord deep in my heart to picture sin looking like that ferocious beast. I think that if we had a visual of the devouring nature of sin more similar to the one above, then we might be a little more cautions to not just steer clear of it, but to paddle, I mean run the opposite direction!
And for the quote of the week;
"We learn prayer's deepest depths in prayer, not from books. We reach prayer's highest heights in prayer, not from sermons. The only place to learn prayer, is in prayer, bent and broken on our knees."
I like this quote because I have learned this one from experience. I have honestly read or heard some awesome books, articles, sermons, and Bible studies on prayer. They have all been beneficial to teaching me more about the power of prayer and also in encouraging and inspiring me to pray more. But nothing compares to what God has taught me during the actual act of prayer. It has been during times of prayer that the Holy Spirit has been able to comfort, direct, and speak to me most clearly.
The challenge of the week to the members of CSUS was to spend 5 extra minutes in prayer a day this week. So I am challenging you to the same. I couldn't hurt. And only God knows what 5 extra minutes can do in your heart. Let's give it a try this week!
Monday, March 23, 2009
The names have been changed to protect the, ugh, innocent? Alternately titled, A Long Post So Hang In There
After co-op I went to work at The Hope Center. Many of you know that I work as a counselor there on Monday afternoons. I mainly counsel clients who come for the free pregnancy testing that the Hope Center offers. If you aren't familier with what the Hope Center is, well...it is pretty much exactly what Treyson's Purpose will be one day. It is a pro-life non-profit resource center for women with crisis pregnancies. I became connected with the Hope Center back in November with Meagan and I met with the assisstant director in an effort to get advice and information that would help us with Treyson's Purpose. In January I got a call from the lady that we had met with asking me if I would be interested in training to be a counselor there. She told me that it would benefit with Hope Center while providing with the knowledge and experience that I could use to further Treyson's Purpose. I seized the opportunity enthusiastically! What better way to get knowledge of how a pro-life non-profit agency runs, than to work at one?! Super excited doesn't describe how I felt. So I did the class part of the training in January, and went straight in to the counselors training the next week.
Over the next several weeks I gradually started doing more and more of the counseling on my own. Now I am fully on my own. Every Monday I look forward to going. Don't let the fact that I am so excited about it fool you in to thinking that it is simple. I have had some heart wrenching experience while working there. I have talked with women, and girls for that matter, that have some of the saddest stories I have ever heard personally. There are times that I feel so completely inadequate to help them at all. That is why I committed from my first week working there that I would spend my entire drive from my house to the Hope Center(about 20 min) in earnest prayer, praying that God would prepare the hearts of the clients I will see that day, and to prepare my heart to minister to them.
On my way there today I prayed that God would allow me to have a client to that was married, a Christian, and actually trying to get pregnant. That is the totally opposite of what we normally see, so I just prayed that God would send one my way for a little encouragement. It wears me down emotionally at times for the majority of my clients to be the women and girls that make up all those crazy statistics that I never thought were accurate until I was actually was faced with the women that make them. Underage post-abortive girls, 13 year olds with multiple life altering STD's, 20 years olds on their 4th pregnancy, women who have had 3 or more abortions, etc..... I have had more than one occassion where I have had to go in the restroom and pull myself together before I can walk in the room and tell a 16 year old that was forced by her parents to have an abortion after being raped at 13, that she is indeed pregnant again, and that by law I have to turn her boyfriend in to the state because she is a minor. Or there have been times that I have had to ask the other counselor that works at the same time as me to pray with me because my brain is mush after hearing a horriffic story and I feel unable to form words that could possibly provide comfort.
THAT is why I prayed for some nice, married, Christian to come my way that was just dying to be pregnant. That is what I prayed. And that is what I got. Times two. My first two clients were sweet married women that claimed to be Christians and had been trying for 1-2 years to get pregnant. I was thrilled to talk with them and run their tests. But I was heartbroken when I had to give them their results. Negative.
After the second client I was a bit discouraged. Ok, I was actually on the verge of tears. I was frustrated with how life seems to be unfair and how I had to be the bearer of heartbreakingly bad news. So client three comes along. And now we have a positive. Inspite of the fact that she wasn't married and beared the emotional scars of the post-abortive woman, I was happy for her. Her and her boyfriend have been trying to get pregnant for two years, and even though they aren't married, the lover-of-life in me genuinely congratulated them enthusiastically. Well, my enthusiasm was wiped away when the boyfriend of the newly pregnant girl began flirting with me. Yes, I did say flirting with me. Right in front of his pregnant girlfriend! At first I thought that maybe he was just giddy about the news and the giddiness was making him super friendly. But when they walked out the door after I scheduled their ultrasound, and the secretary exploded at his audacity, I knew it wasn't just my imagination. So much for being excited about client number three.
Just when I was seriously considering going in the restroom and crying for a minute, just to get in out, I get client number 4. I won't go in to details, mainly because my heart can't take it. But I will say that I am pretty sure that she will be having an abortion in the next week or so. That will make 3 abortions in two years for her. I am praying divine intervention in that situation.
This evening I am desperately trying to be at peace about client number 4. I not only prayed desperately before I went back in the room to give her the results of her pregnancy test, but I had the other counselor pray for the client and I as I talked with her. I have never felt so completely inadaquate in all my life. I literally felt like the life of that unborn child was in my hands and if I could just find the right words to say to the mother that I could save it. No right words came, aparently.
I know that my job is only to speak in the spirit and then let God do the work. But it is hard for me to not take the responsibily on myself to save that child when I am the one that is tangibly talking with her.
*Sigh. Big, big sigh*
Tuesday, March 3, 2009
For the most part I am blessed in every aspect of my family. I completely adore my in-laws. I consider Josh's parents my other set of parents because I feel as though I could confide in them the same way I could my own parents. Likewise could be said for my grandparents. My mom's parents my only living grandparents. I am extremely close to them. This past week I have been reflecting on how much of a blessing it is too come from such a close family.
I guess what really made it all hit home was last Friday we went over to my Uncle Donald and Aunt Catherine's house to visit. They live right up the road from us(is "right up the road" a totally southern term? If it is then I appologize for the bad grammer. But honestly, they do live right up the road.) We went by to visit, and to get some goodies from my Uncle Donald's garden. After we left I started thinking about how not many people have a great-great uncle less than a mile from them that they can just ride over and get some carrots and broccli from their garden. Then again, not many people even have a great-great uncle.
Then even later when I was smiling thinking about Luke and Ray pulling carrots, picking kumquats, and running around the yard playing and petting their dog, it hit me. Not many people have a great-great-GREAT uncle that they can go over to their house(walk if we wanted to)and do that. All I can say is that we are blessed.
Here is a picture of Luke with some of the carrots. Tonight we ate some of the broccoli out of his garden. It was so incredible good that it inspired me to add broccoli to my little garden. We eat a ton of broccoli at our house, but it had never occurred to me to grow it in my garden. Broccoli wasn't one of the vegatables that we ever grew in the gardens that we had at our house growing up, so I guess in the back of my mind I felt a little clueless as to how to grow it. But, I will be planting some ASAP!
Here is a picture of the seeds I have sprouted so far.
Yup, it baby chickens. Also, know as chicks, for us chicken farmers(wink, wink). The above picture is what 46 chicks look like. Pretty cute, eh? For those of you that live in the area, you are welcome to bring your kids by to see them any time. Come soon though because they feather out fast. We also have three ducklings. Besides your own newborn baby there isn't anything cuter than a duckling. The chicks are pretty darn cute too though.
Friday, February 27, 2009
Wednesday, January 21, 2009
Treyson's Purpose is a faith based, safe and confidential place for anyone dealing with life choices regarding pregnancy. We provide education and counsel for anyone regardless of age, race, or religion. We hold to the promises of God found in his word and desire to minister to women through Christ's love, without judgement or condemnation, regarding choices made for past, present, or future pregnancies. "The Lord your God is with you, he is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you, he will quiet you with his love, he will rejoice over you with singing." Zephaniah 3:17
It was difficult to cover the vastness of the way in which we desire to minister to those whom we may come in contact with. I feel like Treyson's Purpose is so vitally important that I could honestly write a disertation on all the many many aspects and intricate ways in which I feel that the Lord will use this. But, alas, a few sentences was what we had to work with, and that is what we came up with. Meagan and I both feel that "ministering to women through Christ's love" pretty much covers the root of where we feel that God is leading us. Everything else is just details.
Friday, January 16, 2009
I became a Christian at the age of 7. I remember very clearly the moment of my salvation. The Lord lovingly spoke to my heart and called me to him and I was 100% willing. But, sadly, it has taken me 22 years since that time to come to the point where I commit to him every aspect of my life, holding nothing back for myself. Over the past 22 years I have had a wonderful walk with the Lord where he has always proven faithful to me, even though I have not always returned the favor. At any time in the over 2 decades that I have known the Lord if you would have asked me if I trusted God fully I would have quickly responded, "Asolutely!". In all the ups and downs of my life,(and trust me, there have been downs. Some very far downs to tell you the truth.), even when I was choosing to push God away and live in rebellion to him, I still feel like I trusted him. I didn't have much of a tolerance for the doubting Christian who only seemed to think that God was good if he was lavishing them with blessings, and when he wasn't they would whine and complain that God was uncaring towards their situation or needs. For me, it seemed that the kind of trust that believed in God's goodness and love, and the bad times just as much as the good times, had been given to me at the moment of my salvation. It hasn't been until recently that I realized that I didn't trust the Lord as fully as I had always given myself credit for. I knew that I had always possessed parts of myself that I was unwilling to fully commit to the Lord. I would fervently pray and ask the Lord to shape me and mold me in to a servant for him. But I was still worried to give him every single aspect of my life. What if it wasn't in his plan for me to ever marry? What if he wanted me to move some hideously cold place like Alaska? What if I was never able to have children? What if he wanted me to be a missionary to Africa? What I had to give up all my Beatles music!? I was positive that I could never be happy with any of those things if that is what he had planned for my life. So I would pray and tell him that where ever he led my life I would do my very best to follow.
To an extent.
I was far too afraid of the unknown to fully commit every thing to him. As much as I wanted to give him everything, I couldn't. And as much as I wanted to ignore the fact that I couldn't and focus on other aspects of my walk with the Lord, it would still pop up from time to time. Every loving nudge from the Holy Spirit to commit my all to him would send shockwaves of fear through me. Obviously he wouldn't be pushing the issue if he didn't have something that he knew I really wouldn't want to do planned for me. I got this underlying feeling that the only reason he wanted that sliver of my willl that I was holding on to was because he really did want to send me to Africa, or even worse, Alaska. It was plain as day to me that he must want me to die from frost bite while attempting to be a missionary to eskimos.
Haven't I given him enough? I know it wasn't the exact perfect whole hearted committment, but it was pretty darn good. I mean, the 99% I was willing to give him had to be better than the 0% that many others gave him. God is a mighty God and he should be able to do a whole heck of alot with 99%(and honestly 99% was a good day. Some days were more like 90%, or 80%, or 75%...) What is one measly little percent? I kept hoping that he would see that I wasn't giving it up and therefore send me somewhere like Cocco Beach, Florida, or San Diego. Surfers and beachbums need Jesus too, right? But, (insert *sigh*), he wasn't giving up. And I wasn't giving in. I threw my energies into other things: Christlike character, scripture memorization and meditation, being a Godly mother that instills a love for the Lord in her children, eccetera, eccetera, and so on. In the past year alone my walk with the Lord has grown and deepened in leaps and bounds. I very nearly forgot about that miniscule part of myself that I was holding on to.
Then, the Lord began speaking to me and revealing himself to me anew through several different avenues. I had a violent change of heart. I say violent because once I truly caught a glimpse of how MUCH the Lord loves me it almost sicken me to hold anything back from him. It wasn't a fear-inducing burden to fully turn myself over to the Lord. It was quite the opposite. Completely and entirely freeing. I didn't want those parts anymore. He knows and desires what is best for me far far more than I ever could. It was the most freeing and deeply peaceful single act that I have ever done. I no longer worry what he has in store for me and where he will lead me. It is no longer my responsibility to plan my life. My only responsibility is to follow him where ever he directs. Oh, and guess what didn't happen when I gave every inch of my will over to him? He didn't ask me to go to Africa, or even Alaska for that matter(although I almost think I would prefer Africa). Infact, he hasn't asked me to go anywhere yet. I do have to admit, I was somewhat disappointed when God didn't have some shocking feat that he wanted me to do. I was so enraptured with love and commitment to him that I wanted to DO something huge to prove to him that I was willing. I forget that I think in human terms and God doesn't. He knows my heart, therefore he didn't need me to prove myself to him. I'm not saying that my commitment to following God's will for my life will never take me somewhere that I don't really want to go. I just fully trust that I will be much happier doing whatever he has for me to do, as opposed to trying to direct my own life and achieve my own happiness. I've been there and done that. I made a complete mess of things in my attempts to try to orchastrate my life as I saw fit. Even with my best intentions of living a Godly life, it was not the same as giving my complete will over to him and committing to following his direction daily regardless of where that takes me.
With my new commitment am I suddenly a near perfect christian that exibits the characteristics of Christ in everything I do? Not by a long shot. Is life perfect? That is a resounding no. While I will strive for the first for the rest of my life, the second with never come to pass, at least not in this life. In fact, right now our family is faced with some difficulties that feel very nearly impossible to fix. At times I do get stressed and upset, but then the gently Lord reminds me that it is not my responsibility to try to fix things. He will fix every thing as it should be if I just move my will out of the way and allow him to. That can still be a difficult thing, but then I remember that freeing peace of giving it all to the Lord. No longer do I have to frantically figure out how to fix the messes around me. No more wasting time telling God how I think he needs to work in my life.
So now, in spite of the adversities that I sometimes feel are coming from every direction, I am so full of a joy and excitement that almost feels uncontainable at times. The God of the universe has a wonderful and specific plan for my life in which he is going to use me for his purpose.
Did you catch that?
God, the same God who created the entire universe and everything in it, loves me with a deeper love than I could ever have the words to describe or even understand. And he not just loves me, but he also has a plan for my life. It isn't just me though, that he feels this way towards. He also has that same love and perfect plan for you and your life. I now feel silly for not having fully trusted him before. While the past 22 years have in no way been a waste, they have not been the full life that God had intended. There are so many heartaches I could have avoided by fully trusting him. Heartaches not just from sin, but also from trying to direct my own life and fix my own problems when I could have just given it all to the Lord. But I am striving to never make that mistake again. I couldn't be more excited as I anticipate how the Lord is going to work in my life. I also fervently pray that each and every one of you can experience this same freeing and peaceful feeling that I now rest in by entirely committing youself, your will, and your plans for your life to the Lord. I can honestly say,
Where ever he leads, I'll follow.