Tuesday, December 28, 2010

32 weeks---only 7 more to go!

I will be 32 weeks along with this sweet baby on Thursday!  I can't believe it!  In some ways it has taken forever, but in some ways it seems to be going by fast!  I knew time would fly as soon as the anticipation of Christmas was over, now the little milestones to get through are New Year's Eve/Day, Super Bowl, and Valentine's Day!  I see the doctor on Thursday morning, and Kris and I have planned a date for Thursday afternoon/evening.  Part of our "date" is looking for a vehicle.  We sold our Honda Element (I miss it so much!) because it only seats 4 with seatbelts, and we need 5 full time seatbelts, not to mention the extra kids that we drive to/from school and church stuff sometimes.  I would really {heart} a nice used Honda Odyssey, but I am not sure if we are going to be find one we can afford.  We are looking for something with lower miles, 6 or more seatbelts, and a low payment...seems impossible, but I think it will be ok!  We will find something!  After our car searching, we're planning on having dinner at my very most favorite place to go to dinner in all of the world---Olive Garden!  Yay!  I would like to go to a couple of stores to look for some pj's for the hospital (mine are all so old and raggedy!) and get a couple more little things for the diaper bag.  We might see a movie, not really sure yet, but we're just planning on enjoying being together---alone (except for the kiddo I can't escape!)  I cannot wait!  It's been such a long time since we've gone on a date.  We need this time together, it's just so important.  I'm hoping it will be a little refresher that I need to get me through the rest of this pregnancy!

The kids have been enjoying plenty of movies on this Christmas break.  It's not been nice enough for them to play outside, they both have had runny noses and coughs.   I'm hoping that the next couple of days will be in the 50's and 60's so they can get out and run off some energy!

Christmas Week 2010!

The kiddos had a great Christmas this year!  Here are a few pictures! 


Katie started her Christmas break from school on Christmas Eve-Eve (the 23rd), so we kept busy that day while waiting on Daddy to come home from work with some painting...


And some Legos and wink-practicing...

Then on Christmas Eve we did some more waiting on Daddy to get home and then headed to Jay and Jill's house.  All of the grandkids got to have a special visit with Santa, everyone sat on Santa's lap except Asher, he wasn't about to sit on this stranger's lap who came right in the back door!  We had to settle for a group picture of all of the kids (and precious Louie-Meme's favorite grandchild!) with Santa!


Then on Christmas morning, little dreams of a Felicity Doll and  a Choo-Choo came true!



Sunday we had Christmas with my family, and Katie and Asher both had a good time playing with cousins!





We are so blessed this Christmas!  We're blessed not only because of the material things that you can see in these pictures, but because of the greatest gift that has ever been given-Jesus!  We feel so fortunate to know that his gift meant salvation for us, a chance for an eternity in Heaven!

Merry Christmas!

Friday, December 17, 2010

This mama's prayer.

I have to admit that I have been struggling a lot with anxiety and depression the past couple of weeks on and off. Some days/hours are good, and I feel calm and happy, and others it's all I can do to not just run away and scream or crawl in bed and cry.  It's so hard to admit that I am not just a perfectly chipper mom who always does the right thing. When I was younger, I had visions of what I might be as a mom, and truthfully, I am not that mom yet, but I still desire to be...I want to be full of grace, kindness and wisdom, but most of the time I find myself anxious, grumpy, and speaking/yelling too quickly. My mom had those same problems when she was a young mother, but now she says that if she could go back, she would just relax, and not worry about everything so much.  She says that now she realizes that time goes by so fast, and she feels like maybe she shouldn't have sweated the small stuff.  I want so much to learn from that, but I still struggle...I just struggle.  I know that I need to be IN THE WORD...every single day, and PRAYING every single day, but I just make excuses.

Lord, I just want to pray right here and now for YOUR grace, wisdom, patience, and goodness to permeate my very heart, my soul, everything that I am.  Lord, I just want to be filled with your love for my children, my husband, my family, and even for strangers.  Please free me from the bondages of sin, anger, anxiety, and depression.  You know me inside and out Lord, you know my comings and goings, every move I make, every thought I have, and you hear every word that comes out of my mouth.  Lord, please forgive me and cleanse me, help me recommit my life to you today, Lord, right now.  I want to be all that you want me to be, as a mother, daughter, wife, and friend.  Lord, I say yes to you today.  In your precious name I pray, Amen.

30 weeks along...only 9 weeks to go!

We made it to 30 weeks!  I had my clinic appointment yesterday, and three blessings happened--I passed my glucose test, and my blood pressure was perfect--126/76, and our sweet baby's heartbeat was perfect!  Those are just huge blessings for all of us!  I talked to nurse about scheduling the c-section, and she said we would schedule it at my 36 week appointment, and it would most likely be scheduled for Thursday, February 17th!  We're so excited to meet our little 5th Alexander...we just cannot wait!  Unless my blood pressure goes back up, we will most likely not have another sonogram, so it looks like we won't know *for sure* that we have a girl in there until the birth...it might be kind of exciting!  I have been sorting baby clothes for both, and did little pink and blue laundry, so we will see!  I just feel so blessed that things are going ok...I was so worried there for a while, but God is so faithful!

We have been keeping pretty busy with Christmas stuff.  It seems like we just have a ton of church activities right now...I'm having trouble keeping up with everything!  I think the thing  I am most looking forward to this Christmas is Christmas Day, just hanging out here at home, just the 4 (5!) of us, in our PJ's for the day.  I told Kris that I just want to sit on the floor and play with toys with the kids, and not worry about laundry, dishes, or cleaning...I just want to savor the time with Katie on one of her probably last "toy" Christmas's, and listen to both of them talk and laugh and play.  Lord, please just help me relax in you for the day...just help me to stop and breathe and play this Christmas...please help me recognize these beautiful gifts are from YOU, because of YOU, and for YOU!

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Asherisms...

Asher and Kris were just eating leftover pizza for lunch, and Asher kept asking for "or ee-huh," "more pizza".  It made me think of all of the cute things he says, the way he pronouces things, and I wanted to write a few of them down so I don't forget them someday.  He pronouces ice cream, "i-heam", which is funny, because I remember Katie saying "hi-ki" for ice cream.  He says, "ding-ding" for thank you...have no idea where that came from, but it sure is adorable, and he says it A LOT--he is very courteous! He has started saying "all aboard" when he's playing trains or lining up dining room chairs for a train...he says it pretty clearly though!  He loves trains!  Santa "might" be bringing him THIS for Christmas, and I can't wait to see the look on his face! He seems to be getting more to the "terrible two's" stage, and is into dumping toys, just to hear the crashing sound and see my frazzled reaction!  Being 7 months pregnant and chasing a big toddler aren't mixing too well, but we're making it...a day at a time.  I'm so thankful for this little two and a half year old blessing...he really is amazing and wonderful...even on his difficult days!  I love you little Asher Pea!

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

28 Weeks and Christmastime!

We're 28 weeks along this week!  We have about 10 weeks until we get to hold our new baby in our arms!  I go to the clinic tomorrow morning, hoping to have good blood pressure and a good blood sugar test.  I have eaten WAY too much during the last week with Thanksgiving and pre-tasting Christmas Reese's Bells, so I'm hoping all of those turn out ok.  I am feeling the baby move so much.  Today I could feel BIG kicks in my ribs and tiny fingers wiggling down low in my belly at the same time...so amazing!  Kris and I STILL cannot believe we've been blessed to have another baby.  It's more than we ever imagined!

We're getting ready for Christmas around here.  We have the tree and inside decorations up, Asher loved putting the Christmas tree up this year.  There are about 15 ornaments hanging on one bottom branch of our tree that he decorated himself, and I just love it (but our tree seriously is leaning a bit on that side!)  I have almost all of my Christmas shopping done.  I did a lot of it online this year, just to avoid too much stress of being in the stores.  I have been wrapping things and putting them under the tree already...so far Ash has only unwrapped one, and it was Katie's---he picked the wrong one! 

I have been working on planning the grocery lists and menus for Christmas food.  So far I'm planning on bringing Jalepeno Popper Spread and Buffalo Chicken Dip to celebrate Christmas Eve with Kris's family, Christmas Morning brunch will be Amish Breakfast Casserole and French Toast Souffle, and we'll probably have munchies and soup throughout Christmas Day.  It will be just the four of us...I'm really looking forward to the whole day of playing with new toys and relaxing!  We're celebrating Christmas with my family on Sunday afternoon, and I'm thinking we'll have even more munchies/snacks/appetizers that day. I'm trying to kind of cut down on all of the candies/goodies I'll be making this year, just to save a little stress and money.  I'm planning on making two kinds of Velveeta Fudge, chocolate and peanut butter (it sounds weird, but is SO good and SO easy!), my Mom's caramels, and maybe cinnamon stained glass candy.  We'll make cut out cookies to leave for Santa too.  I always looked forward to caramels, cinnamon candy, and sugar cookies when I was growing up, I use my mom's recipes for all three of these and I think that makes it kind of special.

Hope everyone is having a Merry Christmas this year!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

So very thankful!

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving!  I just feel so very blessed to have Kris, Katie, Asher and this new little one in my life!  I have to admit that today wasn't the easiest parenting day for Kris and I.  Asher was 1/2 cranky and 1/2 ornery, and Katie was 1/4 great and 3/4 sassy all day!  What a day...Kris and I were both so happy for bedtime to come.  BUT...we are both so thankful for the two of them...we know that this is all part of the privilege of being a mom and dad.  With tomorrow being Thanksgiving, I just needed to focus this evening on how blessed we are...even on rough days!  We have so much to be thankful for...our kids (all THREE!)...our families...our home...Kris's job. We are so very blessed!

Tomorrow we will be 27 weeks along in our pregnancy!  I can't believe we only have 12 weeks left before we get to hold our new baby...we were talking today about how it still doesn't seem real sometimes.  We are amazed that we get to hold a newborn again...our newborn...it's just awesome!  We can't wait to see how much Katie and Asher will just love her (or him!)  We just can't wait to have our family of five in the recovery room all together!  What a day that will be (12 weeks away---YAY!)

Thursday, November 11, 2010

25 weeks today!

We're 25 weeks along today!  I visited the clinic today, and my blood pressure was down to 112/78 so I didn't have to visit the hospital like I thought I might have to.  The first time they took it, it was higher, but it went down just a few minutes later, so they counted the best one of the two on my chart.  I think we're going to make it just fine through this pregnancy...I just need to have faith.  This morning Kris and I prayed together and I prayed and read one of my favorite verses, Zephaniah 3:17.  I tried to just really focus on the meaning  of all of the words in this verse.  It says that The Lord your God is with you, he is mighty to save.  He will quiet you with his love, and he rejoices over you with singing.  I know that I've talked about this before, but can you just imagine our Heavenly father "quieting" us with his love...you know...when your child is crying, you just try and quiet them by holding them in your arms and talking quietly to them...ahh...I love the thought of letting Jesus do that for me!  I also just can imagine him singing a song...about me...to me...sounds pretty selfish, but that's how much our Savior loves us...really He does!  Can you even imagine it...it's hard for me to believe sometimes, but I know it's true!  Anyhoo, we've made it to 25 weeks!  Yay!  If we were having a normal delivery, we would have 15 weeks to wait, but since we're having a scheduled c-section, we only have 13 whole weeks left, and possibly a few days of the next one!  If she delivers us 10 days before the due date, our sweet Valentine will be here on February 14th!  So excited!  I think we have decided on the name, Claire Elise Alexander...Kris and I both just really like it...and if she comes out a boy, he will be Palmer James Alexander...either way, we are so incredibly blessed!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Thankfulness...

I am just so thankful today.  Thankful for my family, thankful for our safe, warm home, thankful for cars that run (most of the time), thankful for Kris's job, thankful for our amazing church, and mostly I'm thankful for my Savior who loves me, unconditionally.  I just feel blessed today.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Trick or Treat!

Our little "Alligator"!

Big Sis and Little Brother!

Our little "Funky Fairy"!

Posing with Daddy on the porch!

We had a fun Halloween this evening!  We took the kids out in our neighborhood, and they really had fun!  Asher learned how to say, "Trick or Treat", and remembered to say "Thank You".  He kept saying, "nice to me" after each house!  I think he thought everyone was so nice to give him "nandy"!  So cute!  Katie was a good big sister, and helped Asher up and down stairs! 

Baby update...we'll be 24 weeks along on Thursday.  Things are going ok.  I've had some problems with my blood pressure going up and down, but at least it's not consistently excessively too high.  I had to visit the doctor's office twice last week to check it. It was a pretty stressful week though, so it's not surprising that it was high. I guess I'll have to keep going weekly to monitor it.  My other labs and tests seem to be ok.  We only have about 15 weeks to go!  We're all getting pretty excited to meet the 5th member of our little family!  I'm feeling ok, pretty tired sometimes, but otherwise doing well.  My belly has finally started to look pregnant, rather than just extra fat!  I'm enjoying feeling the little kicks and wiggles of our sweet little one.



Thursday, October 21, 2010

22 Weeks and good news at the doctor's office today!

My blood pressure was much, much better and my lab tests that they took last week were ok!  I feel so incredibly thankful and blessed!  I am really feeling our little one move around these days, I love that feeling...so wonderful!  We're 22 weeks along today, only 17 more to go!  We'll probably have the baby at 39 weeks somewhere around February the 16th-18th!  I still wish we could find out *for sure* that she's a girl!  We're just going to plan on pink and take one baby blue outfit to the hospital *just in case*.  Either way, we are so blessed to have this little one on the way!

We have some fun days coming up!  Tonight we're going to Bryce's last football game of the season in Altamont.  Tomorrow at 8 pm Kris starts vacation!  Saturday is our nephew, Tre's 3rd birthday party, and we're looking forward to using our new firepit a couple times this weekend.  Next week is Neewollah here in Indy!  Monday night Katie and I are going to honor our tradition of attending the Queen Neelah Talent Competition.  Wednesday the food boothes open, Friday is the Kid's parade, and Saturday morning is the Grand parade.  Then, of course, Sunday is our church's Homecoming and Halloween! We're planning to take the kids trick-or-treating around our neighborhood, and then we'll come home and have "Mummy" dogs for dinner!  Love it when we have such a fun filled calendar!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Doctor's visit...

I went to my appointment today, and was able to hear sweet Claire's heartbeat!  Such a beautiful sound!  After my appointment I had to have some additional blood work, to check my thyroid and creatinine level (which measures kidney function) and I am also having a lovely 24 hour urine test. Later this afternoon the nurse called and we got a little bit of bad news, though.  My blood pressure was very high, so the doctor wants to see me every week until we get it under control.  She also wants me to rest as much as I can.  She didn't put me on "bed rest" but she did ask that I take it easy, get help with housework, play with Asher while sitting down, and lay down if I become dizzy. I have had some dizziness and headaches lately, but I didn't think anything of it.  It has felt like normal pregnancy symptoms. I did pass my first 1 hour glucose test, though, so that was good news.  I am praying that through my diet, I can overcome these blood pressure problems.  I just need to be able to provide a safe little home for Claire for at least 18 more weeks.  If you have an extra prayer to spare, I will sure take them...

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Our weekend...

Yesterday we headed over to my parent's house to have a work day, and help them catch up with some yard work and house stuff.  Lots of wood cutting, weed chopping, roof patching and fence building got done yesterday!  Then we sat around the fire and roasted some hot dogs and GIANT marshmallows!  It was a good day, and I think Mom and Dad were excited about all 6 grandkids visiting at one time.

I wasn't feeling too good this morning, and was up during the night quite a bit not feeling well, so the kids and I missed church today.   Even though I missed being "at church" there was a certain relaxed feeling and comfort of staying home today with the cloudy weather and little bit of rain this afternoon.   Asher and Katie got in clean PJ's and watched some tv, and played Littlest Pet Shop toys together in the living room floor.  We also caught part of the Chiefs game today, and it was exciting for a little while, but they ended up losing to the Colts.  I got a little bit of housework done including killing 1 zillion ants in our kitchen...yuck...so frustrated with those.  Later this afternoon we drove through Dairy Queen (in our PJ's) and got ice cream and drove through the park to see the animals.  Asher likes the goats and the buffalos the best.  It has just been a really nice day!  I only wish Kris hadn't had to work today...he would have enjoyed it.  This evening we're having Creamy White Chili for dinner, and just going to hang out and wait for Daddy to come home from work.

I see the doctor this week on Thursday morning, can't wait to hear sweet Claire's heartbeat again.  We have been calling her Claire, but we're still working on that middle name.  I am really feeling lots of movement now, and can kind of feel those individual limbs, when she stretches or kicks...I love that...so very much...it's the best feeling.

I think that's all for now. I hope everyone has a blessed week!

Friday, October 08, 2010

Baby Girl Name Possibilities...

Claire Veronica Alexander

Claire Elyse Alexander

Claire Alise Alexander

Claire Naomi Alexander

Avery Claire Alexander

Ava Claire Alexander

Clara Mae Alexander

Myah Claire Alexander

Avory Claire Alexander

Ella Claire Alexander

These are my favorite names so far!  Kris keeps calling her Claire Annette (get it--clarinet?)  Ha!  We can't name her that, although I do know a sweet person named Annette!  :o)

Thursday, October 07, 2010

20 weeks-we're half-way to our sweet baby today!

Yay!  We made it to 20 weeks today!  I'm so happy!  I feel so blessed!  I still can't believe it's happening!  I'm feeling the baby move now, just tiny little bumps, but I love it.  I still don't look too pregnant, because I'm such a big girl, but I am wearing mostly maternity clothes now.  I still haven't gained weight, only lost about 3 pounds, but again, with me being overweight already, we're doing ok.  I'm feeling ok, with morning sickness still *pretty much* gone.  I'm just still tired a lot, but I think that has to do with just taking care of Asher and the house.  We've been thinking about names a lot, even though we don't know for sure if it's a girl.  We have Palmer James picked out for a boy, and Claire_______ for a girl.  We need name help!  We love the name Avery Claire, but Kris really truly wanted the first name to be Claire...so we'll see!  Maybe we will just need to look at her face to know for sure.  We're trying to decide whether to pay for another sonogram on our own, maybe a 3-D one, to find out for sure if she's a girl.  The insurance and type of clinic only pays for one unless ordered by the doctor.  Hopefully we will know before we go to the hospital so we'll know what to pack!  We just can't wait.  It's nice, though, that during our waiting time, we have so many holidays and other things to keep us busy!  :o)  We can't wait for our little Valentine!

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

Tissue Paper Garland

Hi!  I am linking up to Frugal Friday at The Shabby Nest! I am always so inspired by everyone's craftiness there!  I have been wanting to try one of the rag garlands or a wreath, but haven't been able to make it out of town to get fabric.  I was trying to think of something I could "try it out" with that might not be so expensive.  I thought about tissue paper, but wasn't sure I would be able to find a "muslin" colored tissue paper.  Then my wheels started turning and I remembered the adorable candy corn tissue paper I had seen at Wal-Mart...lightbulb moment!  So here are the steps:

1. Probably the most time consuming part of this project-Go to Wal-Mart and buy tissue paper 2/$2. I bought two packages.

2.  Unfold the paper and refold so that it fits in your paper cutter, cut 5 inches wide.  You can also cut with scissors of course!
3.  Stack two sections of tissue paper together and sew a straight stitch all the way down the middle of your tissue paper.  You can keep going with the next set of tissue paper so you will have one continuous garland.  I used three bunches.
4.  Cut into the tissue paper about 3/4" wide and almost to the sewn line.  Be sure not to cut your sewn line!
Then do the other side!
 5.  Then start scrunching and gently pull the little fluffies apart!
6.  Hang and enjoy!
The possibilities of this little craft are ENDLESS...you could use pink and blue for baby showers, red and green for Christmas, specific colors for birthday parties, etc!


Just so thankful...

...for all of the blessings in my life!  I just have so many things to thank the Lord for this morning...my little boy who keeps giving me random hugs and squeezes this morning, for my pretty girl who tried so hard to have a better attitude last night and this morning, for our home, for Kris having a good job, for our sweet puppies laying in the sun in the backyard, for groceries in the pantry, for our church family, for this new sweet tiny baby growing inside me...so many things...I am just blessed beyond measure!

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Welcome Little Pumpkin!

I'm hosting a baby shower for my friend Emmalee on Sunday.  I put everything together to see what it would look like today...I think it will be so cute!  My friend Charisse is making the cake, and we're having orange sherbert/pineapple juice/7-up punch.  This is their third girl, so instead of a traditional pink theme, I thought it would be fun to have a fall theme, welcoming their newest little pumpkin (she's due in November!)  She will have 3 little girls 4 and under!  You can click each photo to see more detail.  I hope she enjoys everything! 




It's another little mystery and other updates!

We had our sonogram yesterday, and the tech was not 100% sure, but said that if he were betting, he would say our sweet baby is a GIRL!  The important thing we learned is that our baby has all of it's organs and looks normal and healthy!  We feel so incredibly blessed!  Kris and Katie (and me too...honestly) are just a little disappointed that we don't know for sure, but it might be kind of fun to be surprised!  We'll just have to pack things for a little boy or a little girl to take to the hospital unless Dr. S. orders another one, and she likely will before delivery, just to make sure baby is ready for the c-section. 

We're planning to be completely moved from the other house this weekend, and I think I will feel an enormous relief.  I've been moving things back in the Honda, and I know already that we are going to have another garage sale soon!  We have way too much stuff!  We should close on our refinancing this week, too, and we're just feeling so blessed to be able to afford our home again.

We're looking forward to lots of fall fun stuff in October.  Friday night is Homecoming for IHS Bulldogs, and they are undefeated so far, playing Coffeyville!  We think we might try and go to the game.  Katie's school's Fall Fest is next Friday night, and then on Saturday, we're having a work day at Mom and Dad's with a bonfire and hay ride.  Then of course, Neewollah is coming at the end of the month and Halloween!  Asher is going to be an Alligator and Katie is thinking of being "Kris-The Wal-Mart Manager" for Halloween!  We really like visiting our neighbors on Halloween, it's just a fun time.  Lot's to look forward to!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Tomorrow is our sonogram!

Yay!  I am praying that we will be able to see if we're having a boy or a girl, but mostly I just want to see a healthy, growing baby in there!  I am really struggling with not being able to feel the baby move.  I try to feel it, I lay still, sit still, move around, rub my belly, talk to the baby, I've tried everything!  I just have very little feeling in my belly area.  I loved that experience with Katie and Asher, and it will break my heart if I never get to feel this sweet baby move.  Maybe as baby gets bigger, I will feel those sweet feet.

I will be 19 weeks along on Thursday. I feel a lot better, morning sickness seems to be over for the most part (Thank Goodness!).  I just have that full/bloated feeling now, and don't feel like eating too much. 

Katie wants to go to the sonogram with us, but we haven't decided exactly what to do yet.  I would love for her to see her new baby brother or sister, but I am afraid of how she would feel if something wasn't right.  I know I just worry too much!  We'll probably let her go, so it will be all four of us in that little sonogram room anxious to see our new baby!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Cheesy Bacon Potato Soup and My Fall Basket!

It has been a great day!  The UPS dude came this morning and brought the fall basket from Marythekay!  It's so adorable!  I haven't decided whether to keep it on the bar, or move it to the dining room table!  I love it!  Thank you again...so much for the cute basket! 


The recipe for Cheesy Bacon Potato Soup is below. I'm trying it out today, and it smells wonderful so far! It's similar to our favorite soup in the whole world, Cheeseburger Soup, but uses bacon instead of ground chuck. I've also got some bread in the bread machine, so for once in a long time, I will have a yummy dinner ready for everyone when they get home! I have just been so tired this pregnancy...we've had a lot of take out during the past couple of months. I am ready for homemade soups, stews, and chili for FALL!

Cheesy Bacon Potato Soup

Ingredients:
6 strips of bacon, diced
4 cups peeled cubed potatoes
1 can (14.5 oz) chicken broth
1 small carrot, diced
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup chopped celery
1 tablespoon parsley flakes
1/2 teaspoon celery salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 can cream of celery soup
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 cups milk
1 cup Velveeta, cubed
2 chopped green onions for garnish, if desired.

In a large sauce pan, cook bacon until crisp; drain.  Place cooked bacon, potatoes, onion, celery, parsley flakes, celery salt, pepper, and chicken broth in a dutch oven. You may need just a cup of water to make sure mixture is covered.  Cover and simmer for 30 minutes, until potatoes are tender.  Meanwhile, mix flour, milk, cream of celery together with a wire wisk.  Set aside.  When potatoes are tender, add milk mixture to the soup.  Simmer for 15 more minutes.  Add Velveeta cubes, heat through and serve.  Garnish with green onions if desired!  Yum!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

First day of Fall!

Today is the first day of fall!  Fall is my favorite season, I just love everything about it!  I'm joining in the Fall Festival at This Blessed Nest!  There is some amazing inspiration there!  Be sure and check the previous week's Festival's too! 



This was a serving platter I created using an old ceramic urn and a stoneware platter.  I turned the urn upside down, gorilla glued it to the platter, and spray painted it glossy black.  I added a small grapevine wreath, some little leafy wreaths that I bought from Dollar General a couple of years ago, and a 1/2 price ceramic pumpkin from Hobby Lobby.   Just kind of fun fall centerpiece for our dining room table!


Just a little centerpiece for our eating bar.  Love my ceramic rooster from Hobby Lobby (from at least 5 years ago!)  I move him around all of the time!  The little pedestal bowl was made using a wooden candlestick and a small stoneware bowl.  Again, I gorilla glued them together and spray painted them with Wal-Mart flat white paint. 

Thanks for visiting!  Hope everyone has a beautiful day!


Monday, September 20, 2010

Look at this! So excited!

Winner, winner, chicken dinner!
I'm so excited!  I have never won anything, except a set of plastic yellow handled steak knives at a trivia contest!  This basket of goodies is adorable!  Love all of it and can't wait to decorate the basket for all of the beautiful fall and winter holidays coming up! Yay!  Thank you Marythekay! Woohoo!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

More blessings and whoosh, whoosh, whoosh!

Today has been an excellent day!  I have had no depression today...not any at all!  What a huge relief!  I mentioned earlier that I had been having more depression with this pregnancy than with the other kiddos.  Well, it's time to tell the truth...I have been pretty overwhelmed and have had a significant amount of depression during this pregnancy.  I know most of my posts here are pretty positive and upbeat, but the reality is that almost every day I struggle with feelings of depression.  I visited with my doctor about it, and she said that there are really no safe antidepressants to take during pregnancy, and she was amazingly understanding but asked if I thought I could tough it out.  I told her I could, but honestly, there have been some days when I felt like it was nearly impossible.  Today being a depression-free day has been amazing...I'm praying for many more days like this!

I went to the clinic for my evaluation with the nurse practitioner and dietitian today, and I was so excited when she whipped out the Doppler again!  I got to hear the baby's sweet little whoosh, whoosh, whoosh (you have to say those really fast when you read this) of a heartbeat.  The BPM were 160 today, they were 145 on Tuesday.  I am in LOVE with that sound!

We've had a couple more little financial blessings happen, and I am just amazed at all of the things that have worked out just since we took our house off the market.  I think God was just waiting on us to be obedient so he could pour out some blessings!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

The sweetest sound

We were able to hear the baby's heartbeat yesterday, and it was so beautiful and sweet!  We go to the hospital on the 29th for our sonogram, Downs test, and diabetes test.  We just cannot wait to see what we're having! 

Our refinancing is going really well (huge blessing!).  Our appraisal was today, and it was quick and painless!  So thankful for this!

I'm not feeling too super great today, so this is kind of just a quick update for anyone who might be following.  Hope everyone has a blessed day!

Monday, September 13, 2010

Unmerited favor...

Can I just say that God is AMAZING?  We are not deserving of his awesome power, his ability to work in our lives, and we sure don't deserve his forgiveness and grace.  But he is a God of LOVE!  Yesterday our pastor reminded us of the story of the prodigal son.  Jesus was painting a beautiful picture of how God is with us...waiting on the porch, scanning the horizon, looking for his children...ready to RUN to them and hold them when they come back to him!  I feel like that lost daughter, who has just been floundering around, trying to find my way, making wrong turns, wrong decisions, and who has finally just decided to go home to my Father, and crawl in his arms and let him handle all of my problems.  I feel so incredibly blessed this morning.  Just amazing! 

This week we have had some amazing blessings happen.  After some prayer and 6 months of waiting and wondering,we took the house off the market this week.  We visited with Marilyn about it and she was so gracious and understanding.  We visited with our realtor, and she too, was just so supportive of our decision.  We applied for a new mortgage to refinance our loan. We were approved with at 4.75% interest rate!  Our payment will go down by $200.00 beginning in December!  We were thrilled!  We also had a couple of other financial blessings that were just huge to us.  It's amazing how God works, even when we don't make good decisions.  I know he is with us, loving us, even when we make mistakes and sin. Again, I just feel incredibly blessed.

We see Dr. S. tomorrow morning.  I am praying to hear that strong beautiful heartbeat with the Doppler.  We're praying that everything is ok.  I can't feel too much movement yet.  I have a lot of numbness in my belly area where nerves may have been damaged during Asher's c-section, so I'm hoping that's the reason I'm having trouble feeling the baby move.  We'll have our sonogram next week to find out if we're having a girl or boy.  My morning sickness is getting so much better, I'm still hoping for that burst of energy in the 2nd trimester, I have a lot to do!  Baby nesting here I come!

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

16 weeks pregnant and other stuff...

We're 16 weeks pregnant this week!  It's amazing that we're almost half way to baby already!  My due date is February 24th, but we'll have the c-section about 7-10 days before that.  I'm kind of hoping for a Valentine's Day baby on the 14th!  :o)  We see Dr. S. again next week, and then our sonogram is the following week!  I just can't wait to find out what we're having so I can start baby nesting.  :o)  I'm feeling better, but still having lots of tummy trouble some days.  My energy is slowly coming back.  I've struggled with depression a little more with this pregnancy than with Kate or Asher, but I think it's just a giant combination of reasons.  My belly is growing, but because I am already a big girl, it's hard to tell.  No pants fit, though, so I know it's solid baby in there, no squishing the chubbiness! Our baby is the size of an avocado,  but feels more like a cantaloupe already!

We're starting to feel some clarity and peace about our house situation.  We are just having the feeling that we should take our home off the market and just tough it out until springtime.  We know that God is going to take care of us...he is always faithful.  By June, our financial situation will look very different than it does now, and if we can make it through these months, we'll be OK.  We are so blessed that we just have 10 months of tough financial times, some people don't know when their situation will be better, if ever.  We are so blessed, even though the road is rocky sometimes.

Katie is loving school, and was so disappointed that there was a Labor Day holiday!  She loves her teacher, and seems to really thrive with a structured schedule and expectations. 

Asher is doing good...he's growing into such a big boy.  He just amazes me the things he knows and words he can say now.  It's like he's preparing to be a big brouther!  He loves babies, and points them out everywhere we go.  He's a sweet little dude...we are so blessed...

Monday, September 06, 2010

His grace is enough...

It's enough to cover my sins, every single day.
It's enough to get me through this pregnancy.
It's enough to free me from the anxiety I have today.
It's enough...it's all I need...God's unfailing love and grace.

Wednesday, September 01, 2010

We have internet again!  Yahoo!  We were able to get internet only for $14.95 without a phone line, and I am just so thankful.  I have been lost...I didn't realize how much I used the internet, for checking the weather, for looking up recipes, for balancing the checkbook, paying bills, and most importantly, for connecting with other people...I missed it so much this past month.  Anyway, I'm back, and just feel so happy to be blogging again!

My sister posted on facebook that this was the first day of her favorite months...the "ber" months...and I agree!  I am so happy that fall is on it's way and August is over!  Katie started 5th grade today!  She loves her new teacher, and is so happy to be back to school.  She loves it, and I love it that she's learning more about God as she learns regular school stuff.


Asher seemed to enjoy having Mom and Dad all to himself today...he is cute and is putting lots of words together.  He now says "Lub you Mama"...it completely melts my heart!  He is able to tell us pretty much everything using real words now, even though it's just Alexander language apparently, because lots of people can't understand what he's saying!  He is a cheeseball...and just growing so fast.

We are heading into week 16 of growing this sweet baby!  We'll have our sonogram to find out if we're expecting a girl or boy the week of September 20th, cannot wait to find out!  I'm looking forward to doing some thrifting and sewing to get ready for this sweet new arrival.  We've decided that a boy would certainly be easier, because of bedrooms and baby supplies already on hand, but a girl would be an amazingly fun surprise too!  Whatever happens, we are blessed!  I can instantly think of 10 families that are desperately trying to get pregnant or adopt a baby, and why God chose us to bless with this little one is beyond me...it's so humbling, and so amazing.  I've been praying extra hard for people that I know that want a baby so badly.  I know that it's heartbreaking to want someone in your life so much and not have it happen

Our house is still on the market, but I'm almost wondering if God wants us to stay here.  It's been such a confusing thing.  I don't understand it, but I know God knows the reasons, and his plans are perfect.  I just have to keep reminding myself of this and trusting in it completely.  Letting anxiety go is the hardest part for me.  I've begged God to release me from it, but I just don't know how to "physically" let go of the anxiety in my heart.  Pregnancy hormones+Anxiety= me an emotional fruitcake sometimes...poor Kris.  It will all work out...for I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you, plans not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future...Jeremiah 29:11

Friday, August 13, 2010

Trust.

Hi.  I've been thinking about this little word.  I've been thinking about what it means.  I've been thinking about ways that I can show God that I trust him.  I have been talking to Him about it.  A lot.  It's a difficult thing, to completely trust someone...even if that someone is the God of the universe.  There are lots of verses in the Bible about trust, Proverbs 3:5-6 comes to mind mostly because of our Caravan ministry at church.  I know that I just need to do what the Bible says, to TRUST him with all of my heart and lean not on my own understanding.  My understanding of why our house has not sold is just not good, so I am declaring not to lean on that any further!  I really, really just want to trust in the Lord with all of my heart.  He knows our situation, he knows every detail.  He knows about our finances, he knows about our mortgage, he knows about the desires of our hearts to watch the sun set from our front porch, to live simply, to cherish the outdoors and freedom from debt...he knows every beat of our heart, every wish, every dream...He...the God of the entire universe...knows all about this.  We pray every single day about selling the house, and I know there are so many other more important things that I should be praying about.  It just feels like if we could get this taken care of, so many other things would fall into place.  I know I can't go my whole life just waiting for the next big hurdle to be crossed off the list, I need to be enjoying the little everyday things now.  Lord, please help me trust you, please help me to be aware of the blessings all around me today.  In your name I pray...amen.

Monday, August 09, 2010

Just checking in!

Crystal and the kiddos came over for a visit today, and she brought her laptop and wireless card, so I decided to check in!  The kids are growing so fast.  Rylee has finally surpassed Katie in height!  Reagan is such a big girl at 4, and Reese is just such a big serious boy!  Asher and Katie are enjoying the company, but it's so hot out that they've all been stuck inside.  We're planning on going to the zoo and park later when it cools off. 

Our little blueberry (which is no longer the size of a blueberry!) is doing good.  Morning sickness seems to be tapering off, and our first trimester is almost through!  I see the doctor on August 20th, can't wait to just hear that sweet heartbeat again!  I am still really tired, but I think part of it is the heat, and part of it is just having two other kids (one of them being a normal 2 year old!).  Hoping to get some energy back soon.

We still have not sold our house.  It's been on the market 5 months.  We still believe that God has a great plan for us, but we have no idea what it is.  We will just wait and see.  Everything is going to be ok!  I'm partly trying to convince myself of this, but I know in my heart that it's true.  We did have someone call and ask for bedroom measurements today, so that could be a good sign...we will just keep praying and waiting!

 

Monday, July 19, 2010

We're going "unplugged" for a little while...

We've decided to let our phone/internet/dish tv go for a while to save some money until the house sells.  It was a tough decision, but there are so many other more important things.  We just feel like this is the right thing to do.  We're going to try and visit the library once a week, so I will try and update the blog then.  I'm also going to keep a "blog" offline in a document on the computer.  I will miss checking in on other's blogs, but I will try and do that a little bit at the library.  Everything is going to be ok!  Hopefully we will sell the house soon!

Baby news...Our due date looks like it's going to be February 23rd.  We still can't believe how blessed we are to have the chance to have one more precious little one.  Asher has even started looking in my belly button for the "beebee"!  Ha!  Katie is just sure it's a girl and wants a sister so badly!

I guess I will sign off for a while...I know things will be ok.  God is faithful.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

He's changing my mission and perspective...

I have lots of stuff churning in my mind this morning, and I just want to share some of it.  I have to confess...one week ago, before I took the pregnancy test, my mind was on one thing...selling this house.  Suddenly this week, things have changed.  I am focused more on being a mother, taking more time with Katie and Asher, making sure that they know I love them with all of my heart.  It's amazing how my perspective has changed in just one short week.  Last week I was obsessed with house/decor blogs, keeping up with the latest up-cycling craft, continuously changing around my growing garage sale milk glass collection, being just crazy with theories and schemes to sell the house.  Since then, I have just been feeling my spirit surrender and yield to the Lord, just feeling myself literally melt into the only One who can handle this.  Suddenly my prayers are not about the house, they are about His will, his desire for our family, praying for our little blueberry.  Nothing. Else. Matters.  Nothing, except God and his will for our lives.  I've gained this huge amount of clarity...this clear knowledge of my purpose...of being a mother, of being a wife, and of being a servant.  I feel calm.  It feels like a mission, one that only God could have given me.  We weren't trying to have another baby, but God knew that it was his plan for us.  He knows all about this.  He knows all about Katie and Asher, and their need for us to be Godly parents, he knows all about the desires of our hearts...which have changed immensely this week.  He knows everything, and the amazing part is that he loves us.  He LOVES us...He loves us...amazing...just completely amazing.

This morning as Kris and prayed together, we both just felt the Holy Spirit leading us to just completely surrender.  We prayed for our ears and eyes to be open to his plan for us. 

Thank you, Lord, so much for your Holy Spirit...please help us just to listen for you, to listen for your still small voice.  Please help us see opportunities for your will to be done.  Please keep our hearts WIDE open to YOU, and to you only.  In Jesus' Name.

All to Jesus I surrender;


All to Him I freely give;

I will ever love and trust Him,

In His presence daily live.

Refrain:

I surrender all,

I surrender all;

All to Thee, my blessed Savior,

I surrender all.

All to Jesus I surrender;

Humbly at His feet I bow,

Worldly pleasures all forsaken;

Take me, Jesus, take me now.

All to Jesus I surrender;

Make me, Savior, wholly Thine;

Let me feel the Holy Spirit,

Truly know that Thou art mine.

All to Jesus I surrender;

Lord, I give myself to Thee;

Fill me with Thy love and power;

Let Thy blessing fall on me.

All to Jesus I surrender;

Now I feel the sacred flame.

Oh, the joy of full salvation!

Glory, glory, to His Name!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Updates...

Baby Stuff...We have a doctor's appt. with our OB/GYN on Friday, July 23rd.  She's on vacation this week, so we had to wait until the first available appointment next week.   Jenny, Dr.'s nurse asked me if I had begun taking prenatal vitamins, and asked if everything seemed to be going ok.  Jenny was with us all throughout our pregnancy with Asher, so she knows a little bit of history of our years of trying, etc.  She was excited for us. Having an appointment makes it seem so much more real.  I'm feeling ok.  I have had just tiny little bouts of nausea, and have had little cramps here and there...those scare me so much, but I know that every pregnancy is different.  I had those little cramps with Katie and Asher, but I was much sicker with both of them by this point.  I'm just praying that things are ok in there...it's difficult to imagine loving another little someone as much as I do Katie and Asher...but I already do...I love this little tiny blueberry!

House Stuff...We are trying to decide whether to lower the price on our house again.  One of the houses in our price range on the next block sold, so I still have hope that maybe our house might be right for someone.  They moved to a larger house here in town, and I saw them moving today.  I have to admit that I was a tiny bit jealous, and even teared up just a little bit (pregnancy hormones, I'm completely sure!).  I just want our house to sell so badly.  We have a number in our head that would allow us to pay off our mortgage, pay the commission, pay the closing costs, and pay off our lawnmower that we bought for the new house.  It's $3K less than our asking price now, but I am just not sure if we should drop the price or not.  We've been sort of praying about the price change, and I pray all of the time about selling the house...I know that God has the divine plan.  I just wonder how this measily house selling business could be important to him with so many much more important needs happening all around us.  I know HE is infinite...and has limitless capabilities...I just wish I knew what will be happening with our house.  We talked to Marilyn about a time frame or deadline of when we would need to know about renting her home or not renting it.  She has asked that she be able to move forward with other plans at the end of the year if we're not out there.  She has been amazingly generous and patient with us.  We know that has been a huge gift from God!  Things will work out someday, and I am so ready and anxious for that day!

Summer Stuff...Katie is going to VBS in Tyro this week, and has Missionary Fun Day, and FaithWeaver Friends this week too, busy, busy, BUSY!  I think I am going to take the kids to Big Hill Beach tomorrow.  We just need to get out of the house.  It's only $1 for each adult and kids 12 and under are free...so for a little bit of gas, and $1 we can go play in the sand and water.  Asher has never been to the beach before, so it might just be a great big adventure for him.  I think I will pack the cooler full of cold fruit and water bottles, with some homemade chocolate chip cookies and maybe a couple peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.  And of course...I will definitely bring the camera!  Maybe it will be fun to get out for the day!

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Well...we have some news...

A couple of days ago we learned that we are going to be a family of FIVE!  We're so excited, feel so incredibly blessed!  It was a complete and total surprise blessing!  After several years of infertility between Katie and Asher, God has blessed us twice more, with Asher and this new little one!  We are in awe.  Suddenly the concerns of selling the house, figuring our our financial situation, and everything else that has been bothering us is fading to the background in the light of this incredible news.  We're only about 7 weeks along, so please pray with us that our littlest pea is healthy and growing good in there. 

Katie just got home from camp at Ochelata.  She had a great time, and was nominated for Camper of the Year!  She is crazy happy about a new baby, and keeps kissing and hugging my stomach!  Asher doesn't know what to think.  He doesn't seem to understand.  By the time the baby is born in late February or early March, he will be almost 3, so maybe he will be able to understand then.  We're just so excited!  We can't even believe it!

Thursday, July 08, 2010

Steadfast...

My heart is steadfast, O God,
my heart is steadfast;
I will sing and make music.
Awake, my soul!
Awake, harp and lyre!
I will awaken the dawn.
I will praise you, O Lord, among the nations;
I will sing of you among the peoples.
For great is your love, reaching to the heavens;
your faithfulness reaches to the skies.
Be exalted, O God, above the heavens;
let your glory be over all the earth.
Psalm 57:7-11

I want to be steadfast, and KNOW that God is soverign, that he has everything under control, but I'm struggling today.  Lord, renew a steadfast spirit within me, create in me a clean heart, one that is open to your hope!  I really, really want to sell our house, we need to sell it.  I just want to so badly.. I know he knows the desires of our hearts, and he knows the plans he has for us...plans to give us hope and a future...plans not for disaster.  I know these things in my mind, because I've read them in the Bible, which is TRUE, but my heart is just deflated today.  Please, Lord, please renew my faith.

Tuesday, July 06, 2010

Another Autumn-like July day!

Today it is raining cats and dogs!  It's so rainy and cool and just so pretty outside!  Today my friend Pam took me to lunch for my birthday.  We went to King's Coffee Co. in Dearing, and it was so yummy!  I had tomato basil soup and a grilled cheese with cheddar and provolone...YUM!  I also had two cups of Jamaica Me Crazy coffee...I may not sleep tonight!  Ha!  It was so good, and Pam and I had a nice visit!  I think the rainy cool weather just made the soup and coffee taste 20 times better than usual! 

I was thinking today about how blessed I am.  Even though we're struggling a little financially now, it's just amazing to me that we're able to make it...to pay all of our bills, and I'm a stay at home mom.  Two years ago, I decided to work part time, to be able to stay home with Asher, 6 months ago, I was laid off.  I never imagined that it would be possible for me to be home.  I'm still not sure what's going to happen in a few months, but God knows...and he has it under control!  I remember while I was working full time I would drive by people's houses on days like today, rainy and dark outside, lamps lit and cozy looking inside...I was so envious of those who were able to be home.  God knows the desires of our hearts, and even just those little simple blessings, of being at home, of having a candle burning, and feeling cozy!  HE is the GIVER of these things...and I'm so thankful!

Saturday, July 03, 2010

This July day feels like FALL!

It's been totally rainy and cool outside today...and I LOVE it.  I have my cinnamon candle burning in the kitchen, the kids are snuggled under blankets watching a movie, and Kris is taking a nap!  It would be nice if we could be outside in the sunshine doing some fireworks, but I love these kind of days just as well!

Friday, July 02, 2010

Stars and Stripes!

I wanted to wish everyone a Happy Independence Day with some cute photos of my kids happily smiling but "someone" wasn't having it!  He had a major cow when it came time to take some pictures...he wanted to keep playing in the water!  So we finally let him loose to go splash some more...maybe we'll get those pictures in front of the flag some other time!  Ha!


While they were playing in the water, I took some pictures of the porch. 


I will miss this porch when we move...we have spent lots of time playing out here...it's nice and shady, and the concrete is nice and smooth for sidewalk chalk, hotwheels cars and tricycles! 

I think that's all for now...hope everyone has a happy Independence Day!

Thursday, July 01, 2010

July 1

It's July 1st, and it was 68 degrees this morning...wonderful!  It's so beautiful outside.  We're heading out to the new house to mow and take down wallpaper today.  I think I'm going to let Katie do some smoke balls and snakes while we're hanging out there today.  I love the 4th of July! 

Katie has her last softball game tonight.  She enjoyed it this year, but the team didn't do too well.  They lost every game. :o(  But, she learned a lot, and had fun!  She especially loved learning the little softball cheer, Big Bad Katie, Rip one down the middle...ha!  She is a good encourager of the other little girls...she cheers them on from the outfield!  Bless her heart!

We still haven't sold our house...and there are times when I just can't stand the anxiety of waiting, but I know God has a plan.  He knows all about this.  He knows the desires of our hearts.  He knows what lies ahead.  I'm so thankful for this!

I think that's all for today!

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Red Cake Plate Creation!

I just wanted to join in on Met Monday over at Between Naps on the Porch and Transformation Thursday at The Shabby Chic Cottage.  I am always so inspired by everything that everyone comes up with.  Last Saturday was by far the most amazing garage sale Saturday EVER!  It all started Friday afternoon, actually.  I went to a few sales and saw this cake plate for 50 cents.  I wanted it, but I was in a hurry, and didn't get it...but I thought about it all evening and regretted not grabbing it up!  The next morning I went back by there and it was still there!  It was meant for me!  :o)  I went to a church sale and bought several decorative urns/pedestal things for 10 cents each!  Amazing...I hatched a plan to make one of the beautiful serving plates that I've seen around!  Here is the process...

Two separate pieces...destined to be together!

I pulled his little feet off with pliars.

I used Gorilla Glue to glue them together and...
are you ready?

Painted the whole thing RED! 
(Please pardon the terrible photos, I dropped my camera and have been using an old lens...doesn't work too well!) 


Thanks so much for stopping by! 

Saturday, June 26, 2010

A New Look!

Hi.  I changed the template to my blog up just a little!  I love it!  I think it looks really fresh and pretty!  Here is a link to a whole wealth of blog inspiration: blog inspiration!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Blessings this morning...

This morning, the kids are still sleeping, I'm on my 2nd cup of coffee, and I'm just feeling blessed.  My mom and dad came over last night to go to Katie's softball game.  After the game, Katie and Mom and I made 4th of July t-shirts while Dad and Asher literally rolled all over the living room floor :o)  Asher started it and then Grandpa started rolling!  Just last year during Katie's softball season, my dad was just recovering from a major stroke, bleeding in his brain, and a blood clot...just amazing that he is still with us and can "roll around" with his little grandson...I feel so blessed and THANKFUL for this!  Later on I caught Asher and Dad comparing "boo-boo's" and kissing each other's ouchies!


Thank you Lord!  A friend on facebook lost her dad this week, he was only 67, I think.  She lost her mom a few years ago.  I can't imagine how that would hurt...especially with grandchildren.  I'm saying special prayers for her today.  I just feel really fortunate to have Mom and Dad and Joyce and Kenny still in our lives, for Katie and Asher to get to know each of them, for them to be able to laugh together, to play together, and snuggle together.  So very truly thankful for these things.

We had a showing last night.  My mom said she had a "feeling" that they would like it.   I think I just feel at peace with whatever God has planned.  I would LOVE to get an offer, but I am also content to just wait.  I know God has a plan (and it's a good one!)

I wanted to share some of my amazing garage sale scores from Saturday.


I just feel like God blessed me with all of these things...I got three decorative birdcages...a large one 20"x10"-ish $2 (which I already spray painted red and put out on the front porch! Ha!) and two smaller ones 14"x8"-ish $1 each, 6 flower frogs for $.10 each, a set of 3 wooden candlesticks for $.50, a pretty polkadot blouse for church for me $1, tons of clothes for Katie, priced from $.10-$.50 each...gap, old navy, a cute, cute skirt for church, some tween-ish tops that she really loved, a cake plate for $.50, a pedestal thing for $.10, a print with a cool frame that I am going to turn into a chalkboard for $.10, a ziploc bag full of colored chalk for $.10, a box full of vintage piping, quilt binding and trim, all still in packages for $1, and a box full of vintage buttons for $.50...completely amazing that there were so many wonderful treasures for very little money...a big blessing! 

Katie is a good garage saler!  She had fun and even bought Kris a yellow lab statue for father's day for $.25!  She's thrifty and thoughtful!  :o)

I think that's all for this morning, but I will update if we hear anything on the house!  :o)

Friday, June 18, 2010

God's Amazing Plans!

God’s Amazing Timeline for our Lives:


Leading Kris and I together, even though sin. Giving confirmation to us through street signs and sunflowers.

Giving us Katie, who was so beautiful and amazing, our first true look at what God can do!

The day that Kris found out about the vision center job and I found out about the case manager job in Indy.

The move to Indy was a direct (the most direct I’ve ever witnessed) reach of God’s arm to draw us to his side. He pulled us up from “the Pitt”, from our life of keeping up with the Jones, from “going to church most of the time” to “In-dependence on Him” through so many things, our new church family at Indy Naz, peers who lead us to deeper devotion, through so many things!

The struggles we had during the first year of living in Independence were also a way of God just reaching down, picking us up, holding us close to him, and comforting us. He comforted us through Katie’s hospitalizations with pneumonia, chest x-rays and testing for cystic fibrosis. He held us and provided for us while we paid the high rent and lived in the rental.

He was lovingly patient while we moved from Indy to Mound Valley, and kept us safe on the road each day. He gave us the relief from paying high rent with that move, and gave us a cute little home of our own.

He held us, comforted us, and got us through our miscarriage. He gave us strength to get through it, and gave us a child in Heaven to see someday.

He again was patient with our decision for Kris to work at the DC. He surrounded Kris with men of faith to work with, and lead him deeper into his faith. He let us sell the MV house, so that we could be closer to Kris’s work in Bartlesville.

He lead us to the calling of adopting Zac. He gave us wisdom of the Holy Spirit to discern that it might not have been the best decision, and helped Zac find a home where he was meant to be. He helped us love and appreciate Katie in an amazing way. Going through that was so difficult, but God had his hand in it…he was holding all of us, including Zac in his arms.

The entire time of moving to Caney, working at the dc, contemplating moving to Bartlesville, God still had the good and perfect plan for us to be in Independence. He drew us back to Independence, and provided Kris a job back in the store; he gave us our little rental home for a while. He protected Katie and I from carbon monoxide poisoning while there! He brought us here, to this home for a reason. He gave me Pam, to walk and talk with and lose a little bit of weight with, so that I could get pregnant and have our little Asher. We prayed for so long for another child, we cried and mourned the loss of our baby in Heaven and of Zac, but God had a plan to bring us Asher!

He has given me the opportunity to stay home with our children for a reason. He has given us so much. We just need to wait for his next answer, his next plan for us. I know his plans are best. We have learned that over the years of searching and moving and trying to plan things on our own. We know that HE LOVES US, and he wants what is best for us…so we will trust him…completely.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Trusting, waiting, dreaming...


Do not be anxious about anything but in everything by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.  And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.  Phil. 4:6-7


I'm trying to remind myself of these verses as I pray for our home to sell this morning.  I feel like I've been praying and petitioning God about moving to the country home forever...it's been 6 months.  I know there are reasons and plans beyond what I can see or imagine, but I'm so impatient.  I worry that Marilyn will get tired of waiting on us, and change her mind about letting us rent.  I worry that we are not going to be able to pay our mortgage much longer.  I worry that we haven't paid Katie's tuition in full for this past school year.  I worry about everything that needs to happen when we sell this house.  I know I am not supposed to worry, but I'm naturally a worrier, and it's an area of my spirit that I struggle with every.single.day.  Lord, please help me not worry.  Please help me put my TRUST in you.


I started a photo album on facebook called, "The Old Orchard Cottage"...I think that's what I am going to call our little home and my little "studio" out in the country.  When we were looking at the house, Marilyn told us there was an old orchard on the property, but she didn't think it produced fruit anymore.  Well, we have been watching little apples grow for the past month...they are beautiful!  There are at least three trees producing fruit!  We're so excited!  We have plans to prune in the fall and hopefully get the trees in better shape for the next time around. (I think they produce every other year?) Anyway, we're not spraying for worms or anything, so they will probably be pie apples, or apple butter, with the good parts of each apple.  So excited for living out there this fall.  There are so many things that we love about it out there, the sunsets are beyond amazing...just beautiful and completely wonderful, and all of the different trees and plants and bushes...so many things blooming and changing.  I just can't wait to sit on the porch in my PJ's and drink coffee while watching the sun come up over the trees.  I can't wait to watch the kids play in the yard, and not worry about them screeching with joy too loudly!  I can't wait to let the dogs run and explore and then fall asleep on the porch!  I can't wait for Kris and I to sit out on the porch swing under the stars after the kids have gone to bed!  I know it won't all be peachy and rosey, but there are so many things we are just really looking forward to!  Please pray with us that our home will sell soon!

Wednesday, June 09, 2010

VBS!

VBS is going really well!  We have had about 50 kids, hoping and praying for even more throughout the week!  Our pastor would like to have a baptism on Sunday for the kids who have said yes to Jesus!  :o) 

I told our realtor to be ready, because we were going to be selling the house *NEXT* week!  Praying that God has just been waiting for VBS to be over to get our move happening!

Katie and Asher have been having a blast at VBS.  They both really enjoy it, but we are all pretty tired each night so far!

Monday, May 17, 2010

Trust seems to be the theme lately!

Pastor Bill talked about trust last night in his message.  He told the story of David and Goliath, and how David did not have his trust in the armor that Saul tried to give him, he didn't have trust in the sling and stones, he completely TRUSTED GOD to help him defeat the giant to had defiled his God!  Amazing!  For a while now, I think I have been partly trusting in our realtor (bless her heart--she's amazing!), trusting in my own ability to get the house clean enough for someone to want to buy it, trusting in "enough money" to keep us afloat, trusting in things...but where should my true trust lie?  IN the one who loves me more than anyone, and the one who would never hurt me, the one can work miracles, the ONE who has the ultimate plan for my life---JESUS, MY LORD!  So very thankful for this! 

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Trusting and Waiting...

"Remember it is because He loves us that He waits. Immediate intervention would abort the far greater thing He has in mind. Trust Him for the greater." - Elisabeth Elliot


My friend Jo had this as her facebook status, and I think it's just a great quote...it was perfect timing for her to post it because I needed a little extra encouragement this morning.  I keep thinking there is either something harmful that God is protecting us from, or something greater that he is hatching while we're waiting to sell the house.  I just have to believe that he has a plan, and it's a good plan!  I just have to remind myself of this, over and over, or Satan creeps in and makes me have doubts. 

VBS is coming along, just 3 weeks until our Egypt adventure.  It's been exciting and stressful, but overall, I've seen God's provision so many times already.  We have all of our staff positions filled, about 60 adults and teens!  Praise Him!  So many people have said yes, and I am just so very thankful!  We also have someone who has graciously offered to bake 15 loaves of fresh, open-hearth baked bread for us everyday!  Amazing!  We had a generous budget from the church, so we were able to get everything we need for the crafts.  It's time to start buying the dried fruit and nuts, and the week of VBS we'll buy the fresh fruit.  The marketplace will be set up in our Family Life Center, and I just think the kids are going to have a blast making bricks out of mud, visiting the animal courtyard on Friday, and trying their hand at writing hieroglyphics!  The music is FABULOUS!  I am ready to have VBS!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

He will provide!

We're still waiting to sell the house.  It's been on the market two months today.  We are so ready to get out to the country.  We mowed there last Saturday, and I just couldn't believe how pretty it looked.  I am just in love with the rolling hills, the quiet, the giant yard.  I love the sound of the kids playing and Kris mowing.  I just can't wait to feather our nest.  Please, Lord...please let our house sell soon.

Yesterday and today, the Lord lead me to read two different passages in the Bible about his provision.  The first one was not to worry about what we will eat, drink, or wear and he gave examples of the birds of the air and the lilies in the fields.  Today's story was the classic story of Jesus feeding 5000+ with the little dude's lunch.  I know that God is with us, and he is in control.  I know that even though we're struggling with our finances, we still have plenty to eat, plenty to drink, and we have clothes to wear!  He is also providing enough for our mortgage for shelter.  We're going to be ok.  I just need to concentrate on his provisions, and not try to figure it all out by myself.

Tuesday, May 04, 2010

Great is Thy Faithfulness

Lamentations 3:21-23, says,
Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope:  Because of the Lord's great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail.  They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.

Thank you so much, Lord, for your new mercies every morning.  Even on days when I completely fail, as a wife, mother, friend, you still love me, and make things bright and clean every morning.  Thank you, Lord, for your unconditional love!

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Let everything that has breath praise the Lord!

Psalm 150:1,2,6
Praise the Lord.  Praise God in his sactuary; praise him in his mighty heavens.  Praise him for his acts of power; praise him for his surpassing greatness...Let everything that has breath praise the Lord!