Wednesday, July 30, 2008

My Littlest Princess



One of my Grandma's favorite things to do when we come to visit is go Garage Sailing. This time was no exception. It didn't matter that she had just had a surgical procedure the day before. She is committed to good bargains and has passed that trait on to her daughter, granddaughter, and now her great granddaughter. Rylie loves to go Garage Sailing and will frequently yell out if she sees a sign while we are driving! This trip I was able to get this adorable Cinderella dress for Anna. I thought it was so cute on her! I also got her Halloween costume, a sweet pea pea pod. It is so adorable! I can't wait for Fall to show you those pictures!
While we there, Anna enjoyed a bath in the sink and her Great Aunt Jill!

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Encouragement for Mommies!

I read this quote by G.K. Chesterton on Girl Talk blog, a few weeks ago. I thought it was encouraging!
"[Woman is surrounded] with very young children, who require to be taught not so much anything as everything. Babies need not to be taught a trade, but to be introduced to a world. To put the matter shortly, woman is generally shut up in a house with a human being at the time when he asks all the questions that there are, and some that there aren't...."
"[W]hen people begin to talk about this domestic duty as not merely difficult but trivial and dreary, I simply give up the question. For I cannot with the utmost energy of imagination conceive what they mean. When domesticity, for instance, is called drudgery, all the difficulty arises from a double meaning in the word. If drudgery only means dreadfully hard work, I admit the woman drudges in the home, as a man might drudge [at his work]. But if it means that the hard work is more heavy because it is trifling, colorless and of small import to the soul, then as I say, I give it up; I do not know what the words mean…. I can understand how this might exhaust the mind, but I cannot imagine how it could narrow it. How can it be a large career to tell other people's children [arithmetic], and a small career to tell one's own children about the universe? How can it be broad to be the same thing to everyone, and narrow to be everything to someone? No; a woman's function is laborious, but because it is gigantic, not because it is minute. I will pity Mrs. Jones for the hugeness of her task; I will never pity her for its smallness."

Friday, July 25, 2008

Linky Love

We are temporarily home, but leaving in an hour or so for Idaho with Ryan's side of the family. After that we are going to be enjoying our friend's house in the Mountains. I'm not sure if we'll have Internet at either of these locations. I'll set a few things to post while I'm gone, so hopefully it will work. Please pray that we will have a safe drive as it will be a six to eight hour drive. I'm really hoping the Banana will handle that much car time okay!

Several of my friends have recently started their own blogs. Since I love them and their links, I thought I'd let them be the focus of today's Linky Love!

Blessed With Girls: This is my friend, Erin's blog. We met through a mutual friend, Michelle. I have enjoyed getting to know her and now she's moving away! Thankfully I will still be able to keep up on her life and her beautiful daughter (and one on the way!) through her blog.
Mandi's Blog: I met Mandi when I was a youth group leader and she was a teenager who had just moved here from Texas. We formed a relationship and I have really enjoyed her zany sense of humor ever since. I have watched her grow through some pretty rough trials and have learned much from her!
Janice's Blog: Janice and I are friends from Church. My favorite memory of her is when she called me one night and said, "I just got tickets to see Alabama and the concert starts in a half hour, want to go?" That started 15 years of friendship! (Wow, 15 already?!)
Karrie's Blog: Karrie is my friend from College. She was my Pi Alpha Chi little sister (Go Pandas!) We have had some fun times and a lot of laughter! I had semi lost touch with her over the years, so it's great to have her back in my life!
Michelle's Blog: Michelle is my friend from Church and sort of neighbor. Almost everyone else from Church lives at least 15 minutes away from us. She and I live 3-5 minutes away (depending on who's driving!) She is one of the most giving, sacrificial people I know. She (and her husband, Dave) are continually seeking for ways to bless my family and others. She was a HUGE help when I was on partial bed rest. She cooked dinner for my family for three months, helped me clean house, brought me coffee, etc. She calls me when she's running to the store to see if I need anything. She has been a great source of comfort to me while I've been grieving over my miscarriage. She has cried with me and watched the girls so I could go spend some time with God, as well as other things. She really is a blessing to me!
Ryan's Blog: Okay, so I know his blog isn't new, but he recently invited some of our friends to co author it with him. Now, Chris and Dave are contributing posts on a regular basis. It's fun to read different perspectives on things. Chris is of the Miller Brother fame (acclaimed children's author) and Dave is of the being married to Michelle fame! Seriously though, I've known Dave since he was a little boy and a playmate of my brothers. It has been awesome to watch him grow in the Lord and become the wise sage and good friend that he is. Chris I have known since we were in the awkward pre teen years. We lost touch for awhile and now are friends again with our wonderful families. His wife, Angela, is one of my close friends and we all know how close Rylie and Keegan are (a little to close for her Daddy's comfort!). Anna and Truitt have been seen making eyes at each other as well!

Enjoy all of these blogs and give them some love!

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Grandma and Grandpa's House



This past week, my Mom, Rylie, Anna and I went to a neighboring state to visit my Grandparents. My Grandma had an Angiogram (Heart Catherization) while we were there. They found that she has a blockage in her heart. She needs to have surgery to remove some of the Ovarian cancer, but can't have this until she has a stint put in her heart. Unfortunately, because of the chemo and other complex things, she isn't able to have the stint they want put in. Her doctors are convening this week to figure out what the best option will be. She was disappointed at this news, but overall in pretty good spirits and good energy. Usually when we go visit, we make a Fred Meyer run, go garage sailing, have lunch at Taco Bell, and eat Abby's Pizza. We kept to tradition, with the exception of my Aunt and Uncle bringing Abby's Pizza to the house instead of us going out. We also changed things up a bit and went to visit my other Aunt and Uncle at their house. It was nice to see all of them. We were also able to see my cousin, Cory and his girlfriend for a little bit. I had fun playing cards (Hand and Foot) with my Grandma, Aunt Jill and Uncle Rick. Uncle Rick and I won, by the way! It was so good to spend time with my Grandparents and to watch them interact with my girls! I'm trying to take every opportunity I have with them and am still praying for their salvation.

*Congratulations Steve and Keren! Keren's Mom just called me to tell me that baby Norah was born about an hour ago! She was over eight pounds and has blond hair! Keren was able to have her VBAC like she really wanted and her labor was much better than it was with Jacob! Praise the Lord and welcome to our VBC family, Norah!


Vacating!







We are officially on vacation! (These pictures are actually from yesterday.) We are taking a two week vacation in three parts. Our first trip is to the Hood Canal to stay at our friend's beach cabin. It is absolutely beautiful here! The house is decorated nicely and is very comfortable. Last night we ate dinner outside at the patio table. This is a treat for us since we're not able to do this at home. Rylie was thrilled to be able to stand in the ocean and find shells and throw rocks into the water. Anna loved watching the birds and gazing at the flowers. Ryan and I were enjoying not having any other responsibilities and being able to focus on each other and the girls. It has been very relaxing so far!

Friday we'll go to Idaho with Ryan's side of the family to a house on the river. Next Monday, we'll go to our friend's house in the mountains! I love vacation!

Time With Friends




Sunday afternoon, we enjoyed barbecued hot dogs with our friends, Aaron and Becky at their house. I love going to their house. It is so comfortable, warm, welcoming, and relaxing. It's one of those places that makes you feel like home. I think that is mostly due to their wonderful hospitality, but their home is also very lovely. Rylie especially enjoyed the hammock and sharing chocolate strawberry cake with Uncle Aaron. She also loved the fact that they brought her home a few surprises from Disneyland (they also brought Anna and I souvenirs!) They are so thoughtful and caring. I am so thankful for how they love my girls!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Not Doing Your Best

I have been feeling very overwhelmed lately. This is partially due to feeling like I want to crawl into a hole and partially from my hormones going crazy. It could also be due to the fact that my laundry pile is bigger than my daughter. I feel like I'm losing control of my house. I feel like my days are drifting and not intentional. I have been feeling hopeless. Some of this stems from grieving, some of this stems from lack of discipline.
My friend, Kate, gave me two great books to read. The first, Shopping for Time (which my husband also gave me) I have finished and highly recommend. It is by C.J. Mahaney's wife and daughters. The main lesson I learned from this book is to get up before my children to spend time with the Lord and then prepare for the rest of my day. I was doing this for awhile and it made an incredible difference! Because of all that my body has been going through lately, I have been sleeping in instead. I plan on changing this.
The second book, Secrets to Getting More Done in Less Time, by Donna Otto, is proving helpful so far. I'm only into the third chapter, but one of the highlights is instructions on how to make your own personal planner/organizer.
This article from Girl Talk blog was very encouraging to me as well. Please go read it!
The main thing that has been helping me is spending quality time with the Lord! The other morning, Ryan took care of the girls so I could have some quiet time. I spent some time in the Psalms. My soul was refreshed. I felt like I communed with the Lord, He heard me and encouraged me! I learned many things from this time, but the main thing was that I need to rejoice in the Lord. I find my joy, relief, peace, comfort in Him alone! Everything good comes from the Lord! I need to keep this forefront in my thinking. I deserve nothing good, yet He continues to bless me. I need to see those blessings and meditate on the goodness of the Lord!
I'm definitely a work in progress, but I hope you are encouraged by some of the things I am learning!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Why God doesn't always explain pain. . .

"God cannot make plain all he is doing, because there are millions and millions and millions and millions of effects of every event in your life, the good and the bad. God guides them all. They all have micro purposes and macro purposes. He cannot tell you all of them because your brain can’t hold all of them.
Trust does not demand more than God has told us. And he has given us immeasurably precious promises that he is in control of all things and only does good to his children. And he has given us a very thick book where we can read story after story after story about how he rules for the good of his people. "
Go here to read the rest of the article by John Piper.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Anna's First Rice Cereal!






Anna had her first solid food tonight, rice cereal. She has been watching us eat and trying to pull my plate to her for a month now. Her doctor said she could start rice cereal now that she's four months old because it could help with her acid reflux. (By the way, she's 13.5 lbs now and 27 inches.)
She was definitely more interested in Daddy and the camera and sitting up in her high chair than the cereal. She wasn't sure what she thought of the cereal. She has to learn to keep her mouth closed after a bite so it doesn't all run out. All in all, it was a fun experience!
Please pray for my Rylie girl, she has had a fever all night and all day today. I think she might have caught something at Vacation Bible School, because Luke is sick too.
Congratulations to Josh Hamilton, the Texas Ranger, who just slammed 28 home runs out of the park in the All Star Home run Derby! This is a record! It's even more amazing that his pitcher is a 71 year old high school coach, not a major league pitcher. Hamilton, wanted to thank him for all of the work he has done with high school kids over the years. The other side of the story is that Hamilton was addicted to heavy drugs and was out of baseball for three years. He has since found "faith" and is on top of his game.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

I'm Home

Just a note to say that I'm home as of last night. The surgery went well, if you call that kind of surgery "well". There were no complications. When we got home we had a beautiful hydrangea from Allan and Sara waiting for us on our front porch! It was wonderful to come home to something so pretty and then to see the sweet card, even signed by their boys, was such a lift to my spirits! Thank you!
Su called and said she was in the neighborhood bringing Pastor David and Collen dinner and wanted to know if we wanted some as well. Ribs and homemade terriyaki, lemon marainge pie and cheesecake twice in one week! We have some great cooks in our church!
Michelle graciously stopped by to check on me and brought me some tulips!
Mom and Dad kept Anna overnight and took her to a parade today. I hear she really liked the Harleys, so we might be in trouble!
Rylie had her first sleepover with her cousin Abby and loved it! Today she got to go to a friends Birthday party and swim in the big kids pool.
I'm so thankful for all of the help, support, and prayers that we have received!
I have some things that have been a big comfort and encouragement to me from the Scriptures that I wanted to share with all of you, but right now, I'm pretty drugged up, so I'll have to write that when I'm a little more coherent.
The girls and I are going to stay the night at my parents tonight. Partially so Mom can help me with the girls in the morning and partially because our Saturn broke down and Ryan has to be at church much earlier than we want to be in the morning.
Thank you again to everyone!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Update

I thought I should write an update for those of you that I haven't talked to this week. I ended up not having the D and C Tuesday because I thought I had passed everything naturally. My Doctor decided I didn't need it. However, I was still experiencing a lot of bleeding so I called my doctor today to ask what I should expect. He had me come in for another ultrasound and discovered that I hadn't passed the baby or the placenta yet. I was so surprised, I thought it was almost over! He was concerned that I might hemorrhage over the weekend and end up in the ER because of the amount of blood I've already lost, so he scheduled me for a D and C tomorrow at 2:00. I have to go into the hospital at Noon. This throws a monkey wrench into VBS because Ryan is doing the puppet show and was going to have to get a pie in his face during the picnic tomorrow. He's not too disappointed about the pie though!
I'm a little nervous because I've never gone under with general anesthesia before. The only time I've ever been in the hospital was to deliver my girls. It makes me sad that I won't be going home with a baby this time.
"So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand." Is. 41:10

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

My Birthday





This has been the hardest week and a half of my life, but my friends and family were still able to give me a happy birthday. It started last Thursday night when we went on a double date with Aaron and Becky. Thanks to Dean and Sherylle, we had a gift card to Bahama Breeze, for some crazy, hormonal reason, I was craving ribs! We had a great time relaxing and laughing and then we went to a movie. Saturday, Ryan and Rylie made me cake and hugs. Sunday, my actual birthday, my family had a lunch party for me. My Mom bought tiaras for all the princesses! Monday, Ryan and Becky threw me a fun game night party. It was sans kids and involved a lot of laughter! Go here to see more pictures from the night. Thank you everyone for cheering me up!

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Our Little Ballerina

Lately Rylie has been interested in ballet. This partially stems from her cousin Abby who is taking a ballet class. This picture is of Rylie doing her own dance. The child definitely has my sense of coordination and rhythm! But, she looks darn cute in her ballet dress!

Sunday, July 6, 2008

My Blessings!




Last night, Rylie and Ryan made me a cake for my birthday! Ryan graciously reversed the numbers on my age! I'm sure Anna would have helped, but she was busy jumping! She's four months old now and super happy! I'm so thankful for all of my blessings!

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Baby Providence


When I went to the doctor on Thursday I asked for an ultrasound picture so I could have something to remember my baby by. I thought I would share it here. I know it's hard to make out, but to me it's beautiful!
He said there was no change, still no heartbeat. We were not surprised so we talked again about different options. After much thought, prayer, and research, we decided to do a D & C. This is scheduled for Tuesday. It's surgery with general anesthesia, which I've never had before, so I was a little nervous about that.
But then, on Friday, my plans changed a little because I started cramping and bleeding. I don't know what to expect from my body. If everything hasn't come out by Tuesday, we'll go ahead with the D & C.
I have to admit that I freaked out a little bit when things started. I had my mind set on having surgery and not having to see the whole process. I wasn't mentally or emotionally prepared for it to start coming now.
I have reading Psalm 139:16, "For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother's womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was non of them." This is so comforting to me to know that God created my baby and loves my baby. My baby is now with Him in glory! Amazing!

Fourth of July Pictures









Here are some of my favorite pictures from yesterday! Go here to see all the rest!
Anna enjoyed her first Independence Day by going to the Church picnic and then to Nana's house (Ryan's Mom) for some barbecue. She was pretty disappointed that we wouldn't let her have any of the watermelon that her sister was fastly consuming. She did cheer her sister on in the 3 Legged Race, the Potato Sack Race, and the Water balloon Toss.