“i ya you” means “i love you”

>This morning, Katherine came into the living room smiling and just said, “I ya you!” Then she wrapped her little arms around my leg. It was one of those moments that make you melt. So precious. This was the first time she has said it without one of us saying it to her first. As you can imagine, I cried, then I picked her up & held her. We danced for a while. This was a morning for being thankful. More and more everyday I recognize just how blessed we are… and how far God has brought us. Our family is a miracle.

growwhereyoureplanted.org

still, part 2 of 2

>The journey that led me to October 2, 2009, was one that I have kept pretty quiet… until now. God allows everything that comes into our lives for a reason, and if we keep all of our struggles inside, how can we help others get through the tough times? So here we go…
………
It started out as a surprise on Monday, August 17. I went to the doctor and got the news… SURPRISE! We’re pregnant! It certainly wasn’t planned, but we were extremely excited… more than we thought we would be. So, we started planning… quietly. We decided to wait until we went to the doctor for our 1st ultrasound before we told anyone outside of family and very close friends. For 3 1/2 weeks, we were filled with thoughts of… a new addition to the family… boy or girl?… due in April!… will this be our last child?… need to find a bigger house!

Our first ultrasound was set for Thursday, September 10. Jeff and I sat in joyful anticipation as we waited for the nurse to call us.

Amazing how emotions can change…

As the technician pulled up the pictures on the screen, we giggled as we looked at the head, arms, legs, etc. Obviously, the baby was small at this point, but you could still make it out. The tech seemed to be focusing on something, and then finally she said, “I’m having trouble finding a heartbeat.” By now, I was about 8 weeks pregnant, so the heartbeat should definitely have been detected. After looking at one more screen, she turned off the monitor and just told us how sorry she was. Within 15 minutes, our excitement suddenly turned to shock and utter sorrow.

The next step was to wait for the inevitable miscarriage. For 3 symptom-free weeks, my inner struggle grew deeper and deeper. Could the doctor have been wrong? There were so many emotions… confusion, sorrow, guilt, anger, frustration, pain, indifference… numbness… too many to really explain.

On Sunday, September 27, reality hit. I began to have signs that ultimately led up to Friday, October 2. When I actually lost the baby that Friday night, it was incredibly difficult, physically and emotionally. My amazing husband helped me through it… helped me to understand the situation for what it was.

This was my second miscarriage. The first was October 22, 2006… in between Jeffrey and Katherine. We again grieved the loss of this precious baby, and also thanked God for our two beautiful children… knowing more than ever that they are both here for a purpose!

What started out as an incredibly difficult weekend became a blessing in disguise. I was able to celebrate “new life” by sharing in the experience of a very dear friend’s wedding on Saturday evening. On Sunday morning, hidden behind my guitar, I experienced an incredible time of personal worship… At a time when I had wanted to ask “Why, God?”… all He wanted was for me to be still. As we worshiped to that special song, Still, it became crystal clear that God works together every little detail. Maybe the details don’t always turn out as our finite minds would have imagined, but GOD works ALL THINGS together to accomplish HIS greater purpose!

We were never promised that it would be easy. We were never promised that difficult circumstances would not come into our lives. “Peace like a river” does not mean the water is always “still” on the outside. A river progresses through several different levels of rapids as it winds down its path… at least on the surface. But deep down, at the foundation, it is always… still.

Be still and know that I am God…” Psalm 46:10

www.growwhereyoureplanted.org

still, part 1 of 2

>This is going to be a 2-part blog, starting with the words to a special song… The past few weeks have been a journey for me, which I will explain more in part 2 of this blog… This song is an incredible reminder of the fact that God is ALWAYS in control and He wants us to just be still and know He is God! As you read, think about the words and how our loving Father wants to speak to you through them…

Still

Hide me now under Your wing
Cover me within Your mighty hand

When the oceans rise and thunders roar
I will soar with You above the storm
Father, You are King over the flood
I will be still and know You are God

Find rest, my soul, in Christ alone
Know His power in quietness and trust

When the oceans rise and thunders roar
I will soar with You above the storm
Father, You are King over the flood
I will be still and know You are God

I will be still, I will be still
Be still… Be still and know
I will be still… I will be still
Be still… Be still and know
Be still and know YOU are GOD

Find rest, my soul, in Christ alone
Know His power in quietness and trust

When the oceans rise and thunders roar
I will soar with You above the storm
Father, You are King over the flood
I will be still and know You are God

I will be still and know You are God
I will be still and know You are God

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“Be still and know that I am God…” Psalm 46:10


www.growwhereyoureplanted.org

when you miss…

>Tonight was a “date night” for Jeffrey and me. On our way to putt-putt, he kept endlessly reminding me of how he was going to beat me! Those of you who have been following this blog know that I am the “competitive perfectionist”. Well, maybe I let go of that a little tonight.

For about 3 holes, I was focused on trying to get him to hold his club right, to stand on the right side (he hasn’t figured out that he’s not left-handed), and to TAKE HIS TIME!! After screaming “TAKE YOUR TIME” about 30 times, I finally decided to just let him play. Amazing how much more fun we both had when it didn’t matter how he hit the ball. I saw how precious it is to watch a 3-year-old just enjoy playing for fun… with Mommy. I mean, it won’t be long before we are deep into the competitive side of sports anyway, and then will I be missing these days?

I got lots of hugs and love tonight… but I also got a bonus… as usual, Jeffrey had one of his profound messages that always inspire me. He kept running to stand with me every time he finished putting… and one time, he looked at me and said, “Mommy, can I stand with you when you miss?” And of course, I responded with, “Yes, of course you can. You can always stand with me.” His response was simple and heartwarming… “Mommy, God stands with you when you miss, too.”

How in the world were we blessed with two such precious children? God is so good. Just remember the words of an innocent 3-year-old… God stands with you when you miss.

No wonder Jeffrey is becoming the inspiration for a lot of my writing…

www.growwhereyoureplanted.org

hopeless romantic…

>I love romantic comedies. I would venture to say that most females (including myself) live for the “magic moment” in these movies… you know, when the perfect-looking “Ken” and the perfect-looking “Barbie” just “know” and then they kiss. Here are some of my favorite magic moments…

  • 27 Dresses – “I cried like a baby at the Keller wedding.”
  • 13 Going on 30 – after they jump off the swings
  • You’ve Got Mail – “I wanted it to be you SO badly!”
  • A Walk to Remember – “I think I might kiss you.” “I might be bad at it.” “That’s not possible.”

And the list goes on and on… Especially today, on Valentine’s Day, I have wanted to watch whatever romantic comedies are on TV!!! Why is it that we like to watch stories about other people’s lives so much??

Obviously, real life is not like the movies… I am a firm believer that Hollywood is one of Satan’s biggest schemes. We can let ourselves get so caught up in the “perfect world” we love on the big screen that we miss the incredible life God has given us… I have been guilty of this many times in my life.

Just a challenge on Valentine’s Day to really think about and appreciate what you’ve got. I am a perfectionist (sometimes to the extreme), so this reminder is as much for myself as it is for anyone else… If we demand and expect too much perfection, we really can miss what is right in front of our faces. Life is hard, but God is good, and we all have SO MUCH to be thankful for! I don’t know about you, but I want to be the “hopeless romantic” toward the wonderful man God has blessed me with!!

One Call…

>One call can change your life.

Fortunately, the call I got Monday afternoon was not as devastating as it could have been. Over the past few days, my mind has been processing the “what if” possibilities of Katherine falling all the way down the stairs at her sitter’s house. As you can see from the picture, she is fine, with just a few scrapes and bruises. The understanding of what could have been is almost too much to bear, but it awakens me to the stark reality that God has a reason for allowing this to happen.

The gamut of emotions my heart has worked through has been endless… pain, frustration, anger, fear, gratefulness, utter joy that she is still here… along with the overwhelming obsession to watch her every move, not wanting to take anything for granted ever again!

Yes, I know the cliche, “these things happen,” but I also know that things happen for a reason. This was a wake-up call for me, one that I have needed for a long time. God is calling me to get my priorities right.

Don’t wait until you receive that “one call” to wake up… Let God become the priority He wants to be in your life… And while you’re at it, let Him reorganize your other priorities as well.

“You will seek Me and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart.” – Jeremiah 29:13

Mommy Break

>Oh, the joy of Starbucks…

I’m sitting here at my favorite place to relax, just enjoying some “me time”. It’s amazing how a $4 cup of coffee and my computer can give me the feeling of so much freedom, as if there aren’t dishes to wash, laundry to take care of, and mouths to feed.

I have always been a loner, even venturing to take short trips by myself. There is a feeling of deprivation if I don’t get at least a couple of hours to myself each week. 🙂 But how does this time need to be spent? It’s different every time. Sometimes I write, sometimes I spend time with God, sometimes I read and sometimes I just like to enjoy the time with my coffee.

We all need a “mommy break” sometimes. I believe it helps us to become better mommies, because we are able to break away for a while and see what we really have waiting for us at home. It helps me to appreciate the fact that God has blessed me immensely, and my precious family deserves the best that I can give them.

Time, It Is a Movin…

>I went into my 8-month-old daughter’s room this morning to find her standing up in her crib, holding the rail. In shock, I thought to myself, “where did the time go?” I can remember being in the hospital delivering that little miracle just like it was yesterday. Time passes so fast, and we miss it in our day-to-day worries.

One of my favorite John Lennon lyrics says, “life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.” How true! How often do we sit down in the middle of the day just to play with our kids or enjoy a good cup of coffee instead of worrying about “tomorrow”? My challenge to everyone reading this is to take an hour today and just enjoy “where you’re planted”. We only get one chance to live each moment, and I don’t want to look back and wish I had taken more time to notice the little things.