Sunday, March 28, 2010
Thursday, March 25, 2010
THIS WAS MY SWEET JOJO AFTER CALEB'S SOCCER GAME...
I HAD ONE OF THOSE "TERRIBLE MOTHER" KIND OF FEELINGS TODAY. WE WERE AT CALEB'S GAME AND JOJO WAS SITTING RIGHT NEXT TO ME ON THE BLEACHERS. AS HE GOT UP TO GET SOMETHING, THE BOARD THAT HE STOOD ON WASN'T ATTACHED... NEITHER WAS THE BOARD THAT HE FELL ON... HENCE THE NAIL HEAD THAT HE SLAMMED HIS HEAD ON WAS EXPOSED... I GUESS THAT IS THE KIND OF EQUIPMENT YOU HAVE OUT HERE IN THE COUNTRY:)
I SCOOPED HIM UP AND HE WAS CRYING A LITTLE, THEN THE LADY BEHIND ME SAID, "AHHHH, HE IS BLEEDING." WHEN I TURNED HIS HEAD AROUND IT WAS PRETTY MUCH JUST POURING OUT...
AHHH! I DON'T DO WELL WITH A LOT OF BLOOD. I AM NOT AT ALL AFRAID OF THE BLOOD, BUT MORE AFRAID TO LOOK AT AND INSPECT WHAT IS CAUSING ALL THE BLOOD. GREG OF COURSE WAS AT CHURCH, SO I HAD ALL THE KIDS THERE BY MYSELF. THANKFULLY, I HAD A FEW OTHER PARENTS MORE THAN WILLING TO HELP, EVEN OFFERING THEIR BLANKET TO WET AND TRY TO FIGURE OUT WHERE THE SOURCE WAS. THANKFULLY WE HAD A MALE NURSE:) THERE WHO SAID WE WOULDN'T NEED STITCHES. ANOTHER FAMILY GOT THEIR FIRST AID KIT AND AFTER WE STOPPED THE BLEEDING WE DOCTORED HIM UP WITH SOME ANTIBIOTIC CREAM AND WE WERE GOOD TO GO.
I KNOW THERE WASN'T ANYTHING I COULD DO, BUT I STILL FELT LIKE A HEEL!
I THINK GREG AND I ARE GOING TO GO OUT THERE AND FIX THOSE BLEACHERS... OTHER WISE KNOWING US... IT WILL BE ANNA NEXT WEEK WITH AN INJURY.
JUST A COUPLE OF DAYS AGO, JOJO WAS RIDING HIS BIKE WITH ME WHILE I WAS JOGGING IN THE NEIGHBORHOOD. HE THOUGHT HE WAS SO BIG RIDING THE WHOLE TIME. HE KEPT TELLING ME HOW IT WAS REALLY IMPORTANT FOR HIM TO GET EXERCISE FOR HIS HEART.
THEN HE WAS TELLING ME HE NEEDED TO TAKE A BREAK AND GET SOME KISSES FOR ENERGY... THE KISSES WOULD GIVE HIM ENERGY TO FINISH THE RIDE.
AFTER I FINISHED KISSING HIM A FEW TIMES HE LOOKED UP AT ME WITH HIS BIG BLUE EYES AND SAID, "I WISH YOU WEREN'T MARRIED." I SAID, " WHY JOJO?" HE SAID, "CAUSE I WANT TO MARRY YOU."
MELT MY HEART...
THEN HE CHEERFULLY SAYS, "CAN YOU MARRY TWO PEOPLE MAMA?"
I OF COURSE TOLD HIM, "NOPE JOJO, BUT I KNOW GOD HAS A REALLY SPECIAL GIRL PLANNED FOR YOU TO MARRY SOMEDAY. MOMMY PRAYS FOR THAT LITTLE GIRL ALREADY JOJO."
HE TRULY SAYS SOME OF THE CUTEST, SWEETEST, FUNNIEST THINGS... I NEED TO MAKE IT A POINT TO WRITE THEM DOWN... I DON'T WANT TO FORGET HIS PRECIOUSNESS!
THANKING GOD TODAY THAT JOJO IS SWEETLY SLEEPING ON THE FLOOR NEXT TO MY BED...NO WORSE FOR THE WEAR AFTER HIS EXPERIENCE AT THE SOCCER FIELD.
Monday, March 22, 2010
I have to say I have been a lurker on Linny's blog for awhile... this woman amazes me. You will have to check out her blog at www.aplacecalledsimplicity.blogspot.com They have the most amazing story of how God created their family and it inspires me... lots of beautiful children through her own womb and adoption.
So I decided to join in her Memorial Box Monday post because after I read her post... I knew I had to post about an amazing way God showed His provision in our life in our early years of Marriage.... God is amazing how he provides... isn't HE???
So here is just one of the many stories of God's provision in our life... He IS a mountain moving God...
Just one week after we got married we moved from Wisconsin to Texas to both start our new jobs as teachers at a Christian school. I had always known that if God ever blessed us with kids that I wanted to be home with them... truly that was one of the only things I had wanted in life... to be a wife and a mother and to be able to be with my child after they joined our family.
Well, as it turned out it wasn't easy to conceive for us. The ironic thing was that it had nothing to do with the cancer treatments that Greg had received, but had everything to do with me. Praise God that after 4 years of marriage we were blessed with our Louis. Throughout that pregnancy Greg and I did a lot of discussing. His mom had stayed home with him for a couple of years and then went back to work as a preschool teacher and was able to take him with her. He grew up in a home where his father was a parochial teacher as well, so I know he had his doubts that we could do it financially with out me working. He had good reason to wonder.... we didn't make all that much:)
We decided we would try it and trust God to provide... (I was so ecstatic... it was a dream come true for me) Since Greg and I had taught at that school for a few years we knew many of the families at the church and school. We decided that I would take care of one other little girl during the day and then pick up kids after school and provide care for them at my home. (I have to give a shout out to Christa, one of the sweet little girls that I watched after school, she isn't so little anymore but a beautiful college age girl... wooh that makes me feel old Christa:)
This is where the story gets interesting...Greg and I had served the church in many ways over those first few years of marriage, praise team, youth counselors, etc. At one point Greg had served on a committee, (the funny thing is neither Greg or I can remember what the committee was even for) He had served with a group of men...
Ok, fast forward to about when Louis was about 2 months old. The school year had begun. We had figured out that with the money I was bringing in watching the kids, we would be just a little over $200 dollars short each month... We just moved ahead knowing God would work it all out.
One afternoon I was at school picking up the kids and was stopped by a sweet little girl. She was the daughter of one of the men that had served on the committee with Greg. She came up to my vehicle and gave me an envelope and said, "My mom wanted me to give this to you."
In the envelope was a letter. He wrote about knowing that money would be tight for us being young and now just on Greg's salary. They were really thankful that Greg and I had given a testimony in church about saving ourselves for marriage and each other. They had a sister that had come that one Sunday wem talked and it had been just what she needed to hear. The crazy thing was he had written this verse on his note Galations 6:6 Anyone who receives instruction in the word, must share all good things with his instructor. We were just 2 young early 20 somethings who had given a short testimony... we certainly didn't feel like instructors at all! We were floored by that... (Obviously, that was all God's work, not ours at all:) (Please don't at all think I am sharing any of this to say look at me or us... But truly to say Hey look at God, look what He has done... that is my heart.) This man and his wife had gotten married a little later in life and were blessed abundantly financially... he felt God leading him to share out of his abundance with us... (he even offered to let us use his really cool sports car some night for a date... we never did, bummer, that would have made for a fun memory:) I was shocked, just the note itself was amazing, such an encouragement to us.
Then I looked at the check... can you imagine what the check was for??? First off, I don't think that I had ever seen a check that big... it was for $2500. Yes, it would certainly cover what we would have been short that first year I stayed home with Louis and with just a little leftover. How did he know that we needed $2400? I am still amazed at the number that God laid on this mans heart... truly amazed. I drove right over to the the High School that Greg was now working at and drug all 6 of those kids in with me to show him the awesome handiwork of God right in our hands. I think that moment took away all doubt in Greg's mind that God would take care of us. We felt like that was God's will for our family for me to stay home with Louis and He provided completely.
Still to this day people wonder and ask us how we do it with just Greg working as a Pastor and me home with the kids... and now with us trying to tackle an adoption and all that will entail. Now, I am one frugal gal, (my dad always says that my mom can stretch a buck to five...but I can stretch it to ten... I love that Dad:) Actually I find it kind of fun to try to stretch all that God has given us financially and make it work for us... but it isn't me doing the work it is all God. I could NEVER stretch it like God does. And it continually amazes us... CONTINUALLY. That is it, God will and does continually provide for us. We have no want for anything...nothing! He provides more than we could ever need. He has provided ABUNDANTLY!
You are right Linny. He is our miracle working, mountain moving, awe inspiring, gasp giving God.
Ok, that was kind of a novel... but that was fun, sharing about the goodness of our GREAT God!
And do not set your heart on what you will eat or drink, do not worry about it. For the pagan world runs after such things, and your Father KNOWS that you need them, But seek His kingdom, and these things will be given to you as well. Luke 12:29-31
This is funny, my friend Mary just reminded me in my comments that same year God also abundantly provided for a vacation for Greg and I. Not only did He meet our needs but even for a vacation... something that we certainly didn't need but wanted. Isn't that almost crazy??
We had referred our sweet friends Mary and Chris to the realtor we had used and because of that she entered us into a drawing for a vacation package she was giving away... and guess who won? Yep, us. So we won a cruise that of course we took with Chris and Mary. What great memories, thanks for reminding me of that:)
Saturday, March 20, 2010
THEY ALL FELT LIKE THEY WERE ON SOME BIG ADVENTURE... I JUST LOVED SEEING THEM OUT IN NATURE HAVING SUCH A BALL.
We were blessed this week to have some friends out while they were on Spring Break. We of course still did school. I needed to remind the kids that we took our Spring Break when we went to Texas.
Thursday, March 18, 2010
MY MOM BOUGHT THIS BIRD BATH FOR SAMUEL'S GARDEN WHILE WE WERE IN FLORIDA TOGETHER... I LOVE THE LITTLE BIRDS ON IT... IT REMINDS ME OF THE VERSE WHERE IT TALKS ABOUT IF GOD WATCHES OVER THE SPARROW, HOW MUCH MORE SO DOES HE WATCH OVER US... A PARAPHRASE OF COURSE... I ALSO LOVE THAT THIS CRAZY OKLAHOMA WIND CAN BLOW IT OVER AND NOT DAMAGE IT AT ALL:)
MY OLDER BOYS CAME OUR OF THEIR BEDROOM THIS MORNING WITH THIS LITTLE GIFT THAT THEY MADE FOR ME. I LOVE THEIR SWEET TENDER HEARTS.
Tuesday, March 16, 2010
- THE PLACE WHERE MY CHEST LITERALLY HURTS AND I THINK, NO I KNOW, THAT I FEEL MY HEART BREAKING ALL OVER AGAIN...
- THE PLACE WHERE I IMAGINE HOW HIS SKIN FELT AGAINST MINE...
- THE PLACE WHERE I WANT TO BE ABLE TO SMELL HIS SWEET SMELL AGAIN...
- THE PLACE WHERE I WANT TO BE HELD BY GOD, BUT FOR SOME REASON HE SEEMS MORE SILENT THAN HE DOES ON OTHER DAYS...
- THE PLACE WHERE I WANT TO GO BACK TO THE "OTHER ME" , THE ME I USED TO BE, BEING THE NEW ME HURTS WAY TOO MUCH SOME DAYS...
- THE PLACE WHERE I WOULD RELIVE THAT DAY WITH HIM IN A
- HEARTBEAT... EVEN WITH IT'S EXTREME SORROW, JUST TO HOLD MY PRECIOUS CHILD AGAIN...
- THE PLACE WHERE I JUST WANT TO GO BACK AND RE SEER EVERY INCH OF HIS BEING INTO MY MIND, FOR I FEEL MY MEMORIES FADING OF WHAT HE REALLY LOOKED LIKE, NOW I WONDER IF I AM JUST REMEMBERING WHAT HE LOOKED LIKE IN PICTURES...
- THE PLACE WHERE I REALLY WANT SOME ANSWERS TO MY QUESTIONS...
- THE PLACE WHERE I REPLAY SO MUCH IN MY MIND...
- THE PLACE WHERE THE EVER PRESENT ACHE IS ALL THE WAY AT THE SURFACE...
- THE PLACE WHERE I JUST WISH LIFE WERE SO DIFFERENT THAN IT IS...
Saturday, March 13, 2010
HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO MY UNCLE THOMAS! HE, MY SISTER BETH, AND JOJO (ELIJAH THOMAS) ALL SHARE THE SAME BIRTHDAY. THIS PICTURE WAS TAKEN AT OUR LAST FAMILY REUNION ON THE DAY THAT HE RENEWED HIS WEDDING VOWS WITH MY AUNT, HIS WIFE OF 50 YEARS. I LOVE HOW ANNA IS JUST WATCHING HIM LAUGH, TOTALLY ENTHRALLED WITH HIM... SO FUNNY.
OUR SWEET PRECIOUS JOJO... MY 9 LB. 6 OZ BEAUTIFUL BABY BOY!
THIS IS TYPICAL JOJO:)
OH HOW WE LOVE THIS SWEET, PRECIOUS BOY... HE FILLS OUR HEARTS WITH JOY AND LOVE. WE ARE GETTING READY TO FILL OUR DAY WITH FUN AND CELEBRATING HIS LIFE. WE WILL BE HAVING OUR FRIENDS THE TIEWS OVER TO HELP US CELEBRATE.
Wednesday, March 10, 2010
3 OF THE 4 OLDERS:)
MY PRECIOUS FRIEND MARY
While in Texas, I was blessed to be able to attend the Sally Clarkson, Whole Hearted Mothers conference with my sweet friend Mary and a group of her friends. Last year at this same time, my friend Lula and I met her and some of her friends there too. I was so impressed by her friends last year and am so thankful that she has them in her life. Last year right away some of them came up to me, gave me a hug, talked about Samuel, and told me that they had been praying for me. Wow, strangers willing to talk about my boy and willing to be with me. It felt so good during a time when it felt like many were avoiding me and if not avoiding me, avoiding conversation about the death of my son... at the time though that was all I could think about. I know 4 months after his death, yep, it was still all I could think about. At that point I was in complete despair and totally depressed. I tell people now, that I think that 4-8 mos after Samuel's death was the hardest for me. I don't know why... I know that the shock had worn off, I think I was trying to figure out who I was with out him... I still am at times... who am I now, as I move forward in life, with this hole in my heart? How does God want to use this in my life... He wouldn't have allowed it if He wasn't going to use it. It is like this unopened package... waiting to we unwrapped, what God will do with all of this... all of the pain and hurt of the last 18 months. I can't wait till it gets unwrapped and I can see more of His purpose in this journey.
Well, what difference a year makes. Her friends are still just as nice, amazingly nice and welcoming:) The conference was great. But most of all I just treasured being with my friend. Mary and I still laugh at the fact that now 11 years later we still tear up when we talk about us moving from Houston. Ugh... that was hard. I often wonder how our life would look if we hadn't moved from away from them and the amazing church we were at. You can't ever go back, but it is sometimes fun and a little sad to think about. God has blessed Greg and I so much with the friendship of Mary and Chris. Once back in Houston, we spent a wonderful afternoon and evening with them. The dads took the kids to the park to shoot a video for Mary... and Mary and I sat with a glass of wine and talked. I TOTALLY unloaded... lots of tears, and she cried with me. It felt so good. She was sharing about how she felt after Samuel's memorial service and how she couldn't sleep, was sick just thinking about me at home with my milk coming in and no baby to nurse. As sad as it was to hear, and to live it, it touched me that she has been thinking of all of the details that I have gone through. She is such a good friend...
I was so blessed by our time Mary... Thanks for hanging with me through every step of this grief journey... Greg and I love laughing with you guys, till our sides hurt. We love sharing those special times that we can with our families together... we just plain love all of you...
Tuesday, March 9, 2010
That gives our hearts much joy... but yet I say that with trepidation. We should hear from the Ok-ahoma Sup-eme Court on their ruling in 3-4 mos. and then from there depending on how that turns out there will be 1 or 2 more hearings... So we wait... I will try to keep you posted.
Part of me is bummed... I was praying for a small miracle, that somehow it just wouldn't get dragged out... but that was not meant to be.
Part of me had a feeling it would go this way... but part of me is in disbelief that this is our adoption story... our first birth mom living with us, then that baby too is stillborn, just like our Samuel... then we get this situation that will be so up in the air for so long. It is just a bit bizarre.
Part of me is so excited to see God reveal His plan for our family... this is not how I would have ever planned it:)
Part of me is so tired of waiting... but there is a part of me that can feel God refining us all through this journey, it hurts incredibly, but yet at the same times feels kind of good:) I know I am weird.
Can you tell, I am a whole mix of emotions. I am so thankful I am married to a steady Eddy:)
So we wait... we repeatedly lay our worries at Jesus' feet... We will try not to worry about tomorrow for we know that today has enough worries of it's own.
We try to just wait on the Lord, not really the end result... (although that will be absolutely blissfully wonderful to know the end result when it arrives:) As I was running today I was thinking about that, and trying to make my focus, just waiting on Him, not the outcome... it will have to be a daily surrender that is for sure. But really, sometimes I look at her and think, "Will you really be mine? Or does the Lord just have you here for such a time as this, you need us right now. You need us to love you right now... you deserve that, to be fully loved by a family now and for as long as you are here with us." There are so many thoughts and feelings that run through my mind when I look into her eyes. And there she sits totally oblivious to all that is going on around her... that is pretty precious. What innocence...
As I was running the Lord brought to mind the verse from Isaiah... They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength, they shall mount up with wings as eagles. They shall run and not grow weary, they shall walk and not faint.
I am thankful that His word tells us that He will renew our strength when we wait on Him...
Oh, and by the way, there is another thing I realized when I was running today...
It is official... I am totally out of shape... I have been a slacker, and I paid for it today... the tightness in my chest inspired me to get back into a routine with my running... Then I will be able to proclaim that second half of the verse... that I will run and not grow weary. Because today I was one weary woman...
Thanks again for praying... I will try to keep you updated as things progress, but we should have a fairly quiet next few mos... till we hear back.
Monday, March 8, 2010
Tomorrow morning is a big morning...
I just wanted to mention it, in hopes that you could pray...
I hate always being so vague...but at this point we just have to be... I am starting to wonder if I will ever be able to post her picture...
Anyways I will try to update at some point today... once we hear something.
PLEASE PRAY FOR:
God's will to be done in her life.
The very best for her life will be accomplished.
That all of that would be accomplished in the most efficient way possible.
That this would all be resolved and we could move forward as a family as soon as possible...
That God would protect our children's hearts through all of this.
It is hard sitting and waiting, wondering if the precious little miracle from God that you are falling in love with, (Yeah, who I am kidding, that happened a long time ago) will be able to stay with you for just a little longer or for forever:).
Thanks so much for your prayers!
Saturday, March 6, 2010
ANNA AND GREAT GRANNY
Tuesday, March 2, 2010
I still feel awful, Greg's cousin and niece both seemed to have come down with it now... and my sister in law may be next. Big bummer. I am praying that they recover quickly...
It all reminds me of our trip to Wisconsin, the one where now all my relatives remember it by saying, "Remember the time we all got the Louis fluie?" That was a long time ago...
We had a beautiful day... I can't post any pictures from my in laws computer, but will when I get home. It was gorgeous out, so we headed to the park. We also let the kids jump rope, roller blade and rip stix around the cul du sac. Caleb was hilarious, he totally was pretending to be Apollo Ohno. I think he did over 50 laps around that thing... and he still had tons of crazy energy when we were playing our board game tonight. It was so nice to get out and get some fresh air today. We all needed it.
Well, I wanted to share too, that as far as the sweet little girl goes... the appeal has been made... so the wait till we know the outcome of this will be even longer. Ugh! Really, I knew it could happen, but it still makes me a little mad... is that wrong? Caleb, last night was crying about how unfair life is. It was all in reference to losing Samuel, then faith's baby, then the miscarriage, and still being unsure if we will get to keep this sweet little girl. I had to ask him if he thought we should still pursue conceiving and adoption or if it was just too hard for him and the other kids. He right away said that it was worth the risk to him. Of course these are all great teaching moments to talk with him about how life isn't fair, but that God will sustain us through whatever He allows to come our way. There are so many who have it far far worse than us... We have much to be grateful for... I always want my kids to know that.
Anyways, we should know a bit more within the next couple of weeks but I am sure the appeal to the OKla-oma Supre-e court will take a long while. Your prayers are always appreciated. Please pray that the Lord fills all of our hearts with great peace that can only be from Him. Pray for things to happen as quickly as possible. Pray for wisdom for our family. Please also pray for the Lord's protection on this little girl's life all of the way through.
This makes me fear what could happen even if we end up with her in the end...Obviously, this is my great desire, of course, but there is a fear that we can protect ALL of our children. I wonder if I will need to make my blog private. I already am thinking of changing things so that it becomes a little more anonymous. I need to get to that soon. I am so computer illiterate which means that may take a lot of effort for someone like me... Anyone have any tips for me?
Thanks again for hanging with us on this journey... God is faithful... He can move mountains... He will strengthen us for the road ahead... He will walk it with us!
Ok, I need to run... Hoping to hit IKEA tomorrow:)
Monday, March 1, 2010
We headed down to Texas to FINALLY celebrate Christmas with my in-laws. (My mother in law was ready with Christmas cookies and the tree still up) Greg was such a gem to drop me off in Dallas to attend a Mother's conference with Sally Clarkson. I met up with my precious friend Mary and a bunch of her friends. It was an absolute blessing for me to be with those ladies. I am so thankful my dear friend has such wonderful friends. When we moved and left my sweet friend Mary and her husband Chris almost 11 years ago... we cried... we still cry when we talk about us moving. But I am so thankful that God blessed her with such great, welcoming, loving friends... they accepted me right in as one of their own... so neat to be with other sisters in Christ. The conference was awesome, the fellowship great... an absolutely delightful time....
But back on the home front sickness was brewing...
Greg was up all night Friday to Saturday with Hope while she was throwing up... We all thought it was something that she ate because we are thinking for many reasons that she has some major issues with some food allergies that we are trying to figure out.
Hope was fine on Saturday afternoon and all day yesterday. We even had a wonderful night celebrating with all the extended family... (I cringe thinking that we may have exposed them all to something) ... But then Jojo started later last night, then Hope restarted... then Anna, then my father in law, and then my mother in law....
Ahhh, break out the disinfectant... I feel awful that we brought this with us somehow... I feel bad for them... and am praying that the Lord protects the rest of us from getting it:)
I was thankful for the opportunity to rest with Jojo all night and help him and pray over every inch of that little guys body... to place him repeatedly back in the Lord's care... Praise God he is on the mend... keeping things down, Hope too, and hopefully Anna and the in-laws are close behind:)
I am thankful that we have a God that heals... I have seen first hand that it may not always be a healing on this side of Heaven, but if He doesn't chose to heal here on earth... He certainly does heal them for all of eternity...
Praying that we get over this quickly so we can enjoy some good family and friend time for the rest of the week.
It was really nice to get a break from life... but I do feel a little out of touch:)