Thursday, December 31, 2009

The Final Moments of 2009

....what a year it has been.  We are sitting in our living room watching Slumdog Millionaire.  We've never seen it so we decided  to get it tonight.  We just returned from a week long trip to Shipshewana.  We were visiting my parents for the holidays.  All week, I've been trying to decide what we should do on this last night of the year.  We didn't have the energy to do much so home is where we decided to stay.

Chad and I are ringing in the new year together while the kids are asleep.  Amaya did not get a good nap today so she was out about the minute her head hit the pillow...literally.  =)  Staying at home has become commonplace with our young kiddos...it's not too bad actually.  I do look forward to partying in the new year in the future. =)

HAPPY END TO 2009!! I WILL POST MY SCARF WINNER TOMORROW!!

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Merry Christmas!

It's so crazy how Christmas is so far away for so long and then all of a sudden it's over. We had a great time with family.

We started celebrating on Dec. 12th with Chad's work celebration.  
at this event we had dinner and since they had a live band that was playing folksy / bluegrass music we did a FUN circle dance. It was a blast!!

On December 18th we had our life group party.
at this event we sang Christmas carols at two different assisted living places.  We narrated the Christmas story (including some of the kids).  This was also fun. I wish we could have spent more time at each place but it was a special night.  After caroling we headed back to the house where we have our life group and we enjoyed some soups and exchanged Christmas presents.  It was a night of much laughter!!

On December 20th we celebrated with Chad's family.
This is always a fun time.  Chad's mom likes to give special gifts.  She made these Santa bags or HUGE stockings for each family and they are filled to the brim with fun gifts for the whole family.  It's always fun to dump them out and see what's inside.  Amaya was also fun to watch since this was really her first year enjoying the presents she opened up.

On December 24th we celebrated with our kids. 
This had to be the highlight of my Christmas season.  Earlier this year, I found a toy kitchen at a re-sale shop.  I had been looking at new ones that were good quality and looked cute. =)  The ones I liked were all over $100 and there was NO way I was spending that much on my 2 yr old daughter.  I would rather be putting that money in a savings account for later. Sooo...on my birthday in Sept. my good friend Nicki (who I had just had lunch with at Olive Garden to celebrate me) called me and said she saw a toy kitchen for $40.  Anyway, instead of going home I went to the store and purchased it.  It's huge and Amaya calls it her house. She didn't get to play with it much since we left that day to come to Shipshewana.

On December 25th we celebrated with my family.  
 My family Christmas is always a bit interesting but very fun!!  This year for our gift exchange we gave gifts to the person who was just younger than us.  The youngest person then had the oldest person which is my dad. Our family spans from 1 month old, Julia to my dad who is 64. That's all 37 of us!!  At this celebration we usually have issues with the kids running around like crazy but my mom had a great idea this year!  She blocked off the path and thus put a stop to most of the chaos. My family loves to sing so before we opened gifts we sang some Christmas Carols.  We also played a couple games and ATE AND ATE!!

 ...and now we're done. 


We had a great time at each event.  I'm so thankful for family and friends!!

DON'T FORGET TO ENTER MY 100TH POST DRAWING!! DRAWING ENDS DEC. 31ST!

Monday, December 21, 2009

100th POST.......and a giveaway!

Wow...this is my 100th post.  Yay...I've been blogging for almost 2 years now.  WOW again!


Here is a pic taken around the same time I started blogging (with Amaya). 


Taken last Sunday (we were wearing the same colors).

So I've been thinking about this post for a couple weeks now.  I've been so busy with planning things and getting the Christmas shopping done that blogging has been put on the back burner.

Almost two years ago, I started this blogging thing. I had been thinking about it for a while and I finally decided to do it.  Amaya was 9 or 10 months old and she gave me lots of interesting things to talk about. I can't believe she is going to be three in a few months.  Time flies!!

It's kind of exciting to be writing the 100th post.  That means that I've written a lot.  Some posts have been short but the main thing is that I've stuck with it. I wasn't sure when I started how it was going to go but here I am almost two years and another baby later. =)

So much has happened in the last two years.  I am glad I decided to write about it all.  It's fun for me to go back and read about it.

Now on to the giveaway.  I was talking to a friend of mine, and she suggested I do a giveaway.  What a GREAT idea!!  Thanks Karina!  Since I've started blogging, I've also started crocheting.  It's something that I really love to do.  I don't have a whole lot of finished projects but some of them have been bigger projects and have taken me longer to complete.  So far, I've done 3 baby blankets and some scarves. 

Are you ready for the giveaway?

.....it's a..........SCARF! Since, it's still in the process of being completed, I don't have a picture of it at this time but it's lime green color.

Just post a comment below and let me know how long you've been reading and you'll be entered into the contest to win my giveaway. 

Contest ends New Years Eve (December 31st)!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Random Happenings & the Kids

The other night I was washing dishes and Chad had taken Amaya to our back bathroom.  Makiyah headed down the hall (I thought he was headed after them).  I didn't check on him right away and then I heard, "Honey, Do you know where your son is?"  Soooo I went to check on him and he was happily splashing in the toilet. 
So crazy, cause Amaya never once touched the toilet so I don't really think it's a big deal...well it is now!

For the past several months we have been trying to get Amaya to say, "Yes Mommy" and "Yes Daddy" when we ask her to do something instead of "No I don't want to".  We've done that over and over with hardly any results.  Well that's all changed in the past week or so.  She has been saying "Yes Mom" (not mommy) when I ask her to do something.  It's not always in the right context but it's definitely a start.  I would say she's said it at least 10 times now.  Woohoo!!  All that hard work is paying off.

Makiyah officially has 4 teeth.  Two upper and two lower.  He can give you a big toothy grin now. Love it!

Amaya has been accident free for over a week now.  (Except for at nights...still not sure how to tackle that one).

Amaya loves to do crafts now. She asks to do a craft about once a day.  I guess that's my own fault - now I just have to get stuff for her to do....(I don't mind it too much...that's the teacher in me. =)

Amaya asks for "something special" about every day now too.  I tell her she can have something special for certain things she does (i.e. telling me she needs to go potty.  cleaning up after herself. etc.) The problem with something special is that it's usually candy...gotta think of other something specials.

Mak is a stander by himselfer (ok that doesn't make sense but I like to rhyme.)

Speaking of rhyming...I love saying things that rhyme.  Even things that don't make sense.  Chad often laughs at the things I say.  What's great is that I have a two year old and almost 1 yr. old that love it. =)

I love nicknames a few that I use now and then: Mister Lister (for Mak), Mister Lou (for Mak), Missy Lou (for Amaya), Bitty Boo (Amaya).  When Amaya was younger, I would call her Missy (a nickname that Chad did not look favorably upon so I added the Lou.  I just can't seem to help it....

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Bittersweet

So I think Samaria and I are thinking alike on our blog posts.  I read hers today and we had the same idea: to blog about this weekend.

This Saturday, we had our final service at the old Cherry Hill Church building. It was bittersweet.  It was not as sad as I thought it might be.  I have some really great memories in that old building.  That's where I learned so so much. That's where I was filled with the Spirit.  That's where I learned how to pray. That's where I was a part of the first School of Theology (now called Outpouring School of Ministry).  That's where God changed my life forever.  That's where I met Chad, my amazing and wonderful husband!  That's where I spent many many hours in the basement teaching and loving on the kiddos. That's where I spent many early mornings in 6am prayer (I must confess - I spent some of those early ones sleeping for part of the time until my body adjusted to getting up that early- heehee).

What's so cool about all these memories is that I can take them all with me.  Nothing that I've learned is stuck there in that old building.  I am glad that the next phase of City Church has begun.  Although the name is no longer the same, Jesus is still the same!  He never changes.  The things that I have mentioned above that I've learned, have only gotten better over the years.  I was a part of some of the initial stages of some of those things and I'm happy to announce that much improvement has been made.

The other night when I was sitting in the old church building, it just wasn't the same. There were no pews and the stage had been changed.  Before we got there on Saturday, I had been visualizing us sitting in the pews and when I got there, I realized that there were none anymore. What was great, was the Eric Johnson was back to lead the praise team for a couple songs and that brought back many memories. That was a fun time on the praise time.  I had a chance to sing on Saturday but with the kids and Chad having to work, I missed out.  It would have definitely been fun! 

Friday, December 4, 2009

Christmas Pics

We recently had some family and Christmas pictures taken by Darcy Holsopple.  It was absolutely freezing but we still got some great ones.  I made a new blog header out of some of my favorites. Not the one on our Christmas card this year but still some very sweet pictures.

I haven't been the best at blogging lately..I apologize.  This week started off kinda crazy. Chad came home sick on Monday and then stayed home Tuesday all day.  At the end of the day, I saw Pastor David and he asked me if I was going to email life group (something I do every Tuesday) and I said, "Oh yeah, today was Tuesday, wasn't it."  It just didn't seem like it.

Today, is officially day one of my sleep training for Makiyah.  He's been a good night sleeper for a couple months now but his daytime naps have been horrible.  I can't get anything done.  Today I've let him cry it out both times. So far the first nap it took him 2 hours to fall asleep and he just slept about 1/2 hour.  This nap, it took him about 40 min to fall asleep and we'll see how long he stays asleep.  I gotta stick with it so I can have some time during the day to do things I need to do: Like blog (haha), dishes, laundry, clean etc...

If ya think if me, you can pray that I have the patience to see this through.  I committed myself to 2 full weeks of this...I CAN DO IT!!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Whine or Worship

Today on the way home from my "Black Friday" shopping experience, I heard a little message on gratitude.
The lady said, "You have two choices in life, either whine or worship."

I immediately applied that to my life...in the past year, I've done a lot of whining...

...I've whined and wondered where God has been in the midst of Amaya's surgeries.
...I've whined and wondered where God was in the midst of Chad's job search.
...I've whined and wondered where God was when I had Makiyah and every day seemed like it was so hard b/c he didn't react the same way to "sleep training" that Amaya had.
...I've whined and wondered why I didn't have any close friends.
...I've whined and wondered why Chad didn't love me "in a better way."

Can you hear all the whining?  waaa waaa...

The past few weeks, I've made a conscious choice to be a worshipper...I'm gonna worship because whining keeps me in the same place.

...I'm worshipping because I know that Chad loves me and takes care of me.
...I'm worshipping because I do have great friends here in Bloomington and around the world (Siberia for one..my little T plug).
...I'm worshipping because God has created all babies differently and Makiyah is "one-of-a-kind."
...I'm worshipping because God opened the door at the "right" time for Chad to get his job - one that he loves.
...I'm worshipping because God was still God in the midst of all of Amaya's surgeries and she is now completely done with the need for any surgery.
...I'm worshipping because God asks me to worship simply because He is good!!

Thank you Jesus for a wonderful Thanksgiving and time with family!!  It wasn't quite what I expected but it was still a great time with family!!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

A new Baby Girl

Today I thank you Jesus for a new baby girl: Julia Noelle Weaver!

I thank you that she is healthy.
I thank you that she has fully developed lungs.
I thank you that she has a healthy cry.
I thank you that she is a girl.
I thank you that LL's recovery is swift.
I thank you for a complication free birth.
I thank you for the precious gift of life.
I thank you for answered prayers.
I thank you that her brothers will transition well to having a new baby in the house.

Yesterday, I got the message that my brother, Marty and LL had their baby. I knew it could happen at anytime but I didn't know it was happening yesterday.  IT WAS A GIRL!! I am so happy for them.  I know LL has wanted a girl and I prayed that one day they would have a girl.  When I got the txt, I started shouting and doing a little dance and Mak started crying...OOPS! I've been buying stuff for what I was hoping was a little girl.  They had done an ultrasound but she had hidden her goods (good girl). =)  Hopefully I'll get to see her on the way home from Shipshe on Satuday!  

Weaver Family Count
Boys: 13
Girls: 6

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Today I thank You, Jesus

for....

1. My health!
2. My kiddos - Amaya  and Mak!
3. My husband and the love he has for me!
4. My family both here in Bloomington and in Shipshewana and surrounding areas!
5. Sustaining me in times of hardship!
6. Changing my outlook on life!
7. Always loving me!
8. Always remaining faithful!
9. The ability to have bonfires just about anytime we want to.
10. My garden and the produce I get from it!



Picture of our backyard...just a fun pic that I pulled from Memorial Day of '06.  We played some "field day" games.  LOL...hilarious!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Severly Tested

Last night this baby severely tested me.  Yesterday I told Chad that I am so thankful that Makiyah sleeps through the night now.  So what does he do?  He was awake from 3:24 to 6:10 this morning....argh.  I am a sleepy mommy this morning.


So here is my list of thankfulness

1. Jesus I thank you that Makiyah sleeps through the night and that his sleeping habits are getting better!

2. Jesus I thank you for a husband that gives me the time away from the house when I need a break!

3. Jesus I thank you for this new day!

4. Jesus I thank you for the little things in your word that cause my faith to grow and revelation to come to me!

5. Jesus I thank you for the house that you have given Chad and I!

6. Jesus I thank you for the land that surrounds our house!

7. Jesus I thank you for the ability to pay our bills on time!

8. Jesus I thank you for making us tithers and givers!

9. Jesus I thank you for the promises of Malachi 10 in regards to giving and tithing!!

10.  Jesus I thank you for you - for dying on the cross for me and never changing the amount of love you have towards me.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Being Thankful

Today I made a pact (in my head)...I am going to post every day until Thanksgiving with my top 10 list of what I am thankful for.  Today's message at church was about being thankful and I realized that I need to be more thankful.  I need to remember what God has done for me and my family!

Today's thanksgiving will be in remembrance of some things that God has done for Chad and I.
1. I am thankful that God supplied a 2 week honeymoon with exactly what we wanted!
story: Soon after we got engaged Chad and I discussed our honeymoon. We decided that we wanted to be in the mountains and on the beach and if at all possible we wanted it to be 2 weeks long.  How we were going to do this was a mystery to me. A week after this conversation a dear friend came up to us and said, "I would like to give you my beach condo for a week."  About a week after that another dear friend came up to us and said, "I would like to give you my timeshare - it's good for a week." In the midst of this discussion, a family member said, I would like to give you $1000 towards your honeymoon.  All that happened within about two weeks after our initial conversation. That had never happened to me EVER! We went to the beach, the mountains and finished in Washington DC.  It was actually a little longer than 2 weeks!

Picture from our honeymoon 

2. I am thankful that God supplied a full-time job for me about 8 months after I graduated from IU. 

3. I am thankful that God answered our prayers for a healthy first child (I was praying for a girl).  Amaya was born in April of 07.

4. I am thankful that God has blessed us with several vacations that we didn't have to pay full-price for.

5. I am thankful that God answered our prayers for a healthy second baby (I prayed for a boy).  Makiyah (Mak) was born in January of 09. 

6. I am thankful that God answered my prayers for red hair (I honestly don't know where it comes from other than God answered our prayers).

7. I am thankful that God speaks to us and let's us know that He loves us.  (When we were praying for Makiyah we wanted a nickname and we asked God to show us one.  He showed both of us a picture of a sky...so Makiyah became "baby sky" until he was born.

8. I am thankful that God sustained us through several months of being unemployed except for a couple part-time jobs.
 

9. I am thankful that God opened the door for a wonderful full-time job that Chad loves while at the same time continuing to some degree his work at the church.

10.  I am thankful that God provided for almost $30,000 of medical bills since last November.

I have a loving and compassionate God! Thank you Jesus!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Not Me Monday

 
This is my first time of doing this "not me" Monday post.  What the heck...why not try it...I find it hilarous!

The past few weeks it was not me that has been watching Days of Our Lives because I got hooked on the "baby switch" story. It was not me that watched it online when I missed an episode.  It was not me that gave my husband updates - just in case he wanted to know.  It is definitely not me that is taping it right now because I would have missed a few minutes while putting Amaya to bed.
 
It was not me last night that had to give Amaya a shower 15 min before leaving for church because it was not me who allowed her to have a huge sucker getting it all over her hair and clothes.  Nope definitely not me. It was not me who saw Mak playing in the toilet while giving Amaya a shower (it was clean) thankfully!  It was not me who YELLED at Chad to come get Mak  - I would definitely not do that.

It was not me who showed up 20 minutes late to a Children's ministry meeting. Not me cause I'm always on time. It's not me who is known for being tardy...that's not me..you must be talking about someone else. It's not me who has stacks and stack of laundry - all clean - in the bathroom and a load in the washer. It's not me who should be doing that right at this moment.  It's not me who is using my free time to blog a bit.  I would never do that...not me! 
and...it's definitely not me that threatens Amaya with spanking for peeing in her pants...I would NEVER do that.  I would never allow something like that to happen in my house.  It's not me who says "Be Quiet" to Mak when he keeps crying while I'm trying to watch something on TV...definitely not me!  
It's not me that made fun of my husband last night for saying something (not funny).  I wouldn't laugh at my husband and make him feel bad...certainly not me!!
and it's not me who would post an interesting picture of my daughter on my blog...




Sunday, November 15, 2009

Trick or Treat with City


I've been wanting to post some pics of Amaya and Mak in their costumes.  So here ya go. Mak was a little frog and Amaya a lady bug.  We had fun at the event hosted by our church.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

A Recipe and A Revelation

RECIPE
Last night I made one of the best Fish meals I've made in a long time.  I don't make fish very often since I don't have many good tried and true recipes. I served it with a side of asparagus. I got my most recent issue of Taste of Home's Simple and Delicious and I decided to try a recipe out of it.  It was "simple and delicious."  For any new and seasoned cooks, I recommend both of these magazines: Taste of Home or Taste of Home Simple and Delicious.  I've had a subscription for several years now and I love it. I told Chad I might not renew one of them so I can get another magazine but just thinking about that makes me kinda sad...not sure if I can do it. =)


Crumb-Topped Baked Fish (My variations in parentheses)

4 Haddock or Cod Fillets (I used Tilapia - I got these at Wal-mart, they were individually frozen)
Salt and Pepper to taste
1 1/4 c. seasoned bread crumbs
1/4 c. shredded chedder cheese (I used Parmesan Cheese)
1/4 c. melted butter
1 T minced fresh parsley (I used 1 t. dried parsley)
1/2 t. dried marjoram
1/4 t. garlic powder
1/4 t. dried rosemary, crushed

Place fillets on a greased baking sheet (I used a Pampered Chef stone); season with salt and pepper. In a small bowl combine the remaining ingredients; pat onto fillets (just the top).  Bake at 400 degrees for 15-20 minutes (I did 20 min b/c the stone takes longer to heat) or until fish flakes easily with fork. 
Makes 4 servings.


Asparagus (Found at Simply Recipes)

1 bunch of asparagus
2 T the most exquisite Extra Virgin Olive Oil (I used what I had)
2 T fresh grated Parmesan (I used the bagged kind b/c I used all my fresh with the fish recipe)
1 t. lemon zest - freshly grated lemon rind (I used lemon juice since I had no lemons)
Salt and freshly ground pepper

Prepare the asparagus by rinsing them thoroughly, break off any tough white bottoms and discard. Cut into 1 to 2 inch sections, slicing at a slight angle (I left mine whole).

Fill a medium sized saucepan half way with water, bring to a boil. Add the asparagus and reduce heat slightly to a simmer. Parboil the asparagus for exactly 2 minutes. Drain the hot water. While the asparagus are still hot, toss them in a bowl with the olive oil, Parmesan, and lemon rind. Salt and pepper to taste. Serve warm or room temperature.
I didn't follow all of the above boiling directions. Below is what I did. 
(Fill a big pot halfway water. Once it's boiling, put the asparagus into the water for 3 min.)

This meal gets a ***** rating from me.  This was YUMMY!!!

REVELATION (this is from an email I sent to my life group today)

On Sunday Pastor Kim, asked us to pray, "God give me the courage to allow you to get in ALL parts of me." This really spoke to me.  Have I given all parts of my heart to Him?  Have I given Him the those deep, hidden areas of hurt, bitterness or whatever it may be.  Sometimes we don't even know until it's revealed to us through the word and a specific message that God has for us.  I pray that today, you have the courage to allow God to get in an area that you have kept from Him.

A few days ago, I was reading in II Peter 5 and I read these scriptures for it seems like the "first" time.  I've read it a lot more than that but my eyes were opened anew to it.

"Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time,  / casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you." II Peter 5:6-7

I had always read these two scripture separately.  They are on two different pages in my Bible and I don't think I've ever read them together.  (Crazy!) I've never attributed my humility with casting my care upon Him.  I've prayed for God to make and keep me humble but have been keeping things that "I need" to take care of.  That's definitely something in my "chest of drawers" that has been hidden - it's in one of those lower drawers...that ones that don't get opened much. I pray that through this Braveheart Series (this is our October topic at City Church), our true hearts are revealed and in turn made stronger as we turn and give our all to Jesus!
 

Monday, November 9, 2009

Some of our recent happenings

Today, I took some pictures of one of Amaya's favorite activities. I got the idea for this in the Montessori
Catalog I get.  It has some fun activities - that I have to buy of course - but who needs to buy anything when a few baby jars and pyrex measuring cup will do just fine.   (Don't get me wrong, I'm sure I'm going to purchase a few things when I start "pre-schooling" Amaya. Right now though, I can improvise.)



After I attending the IU game in Wednesday night, I had some popcorn left which I mistakenly left on the toy box.  Nothing is safe anywhere in this house at the moment with a super busy 9 1/2 month old boy.



Yesterday after church, I wanted to get some pictures of Amaya and Mak while playing outside.  Amaya was a willing participant but Mak not so much.  I'll have to post more pics soon.  She was so cute.  At one point, she had a big stick in her hand and was heading down the driveway to "school."  This totally corresponds with her, "I'm six" statement whenever you ask her how old she is.  (haha)


Thursday, November 5, 2009

A Year Ago Today

Exactly one year ago today, I was calling the doctor at about this exact time because Amaya had this HUGE abscess on her neck that kept getting bigger and more infected as time went on. 

At 11:30 was our Dr. appointment and from there we were sent directly to Riley Hospital in Indianapolis to wait for HOURS!  We had fed Amaya some snacks at the Dr. office and because of that she had to wait 6-8 hours for her surgery.  They called it emergency surgery but waiting 6-8 hours didn't quite seem like an emergency.  She did really well for not having anything to eat and drink for that entire time.

What an awful day that was - one year ago today.

Thankfully today she is healed, healthy and whole! We have been released from Riley and don't have anymore check-ups in the future.  I am thankful for the Doctors that we saw while we were there: Dr. Engum did most of the procedures and I can't think of the other doctor who did her last surgery close to her ear. I am thankful for God sustaining us in the most difficult time I have ever been through! God's grace and mercy and LOVE are amazing!

In case you're just joining and were wondering what happened....here is a link to some of what we experienced over the past year: Previous Post on Amaya's Riley Experience

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

In Response to Seasons of Friendship

My good friend Samaria recently did a blog post: Seasons of Friendship.  As I was commenting on her blog post I realized that I should just do a response to her blog post.  I had a lot that I wanted to say in her comments section (almost more than what she had written). LOL

Here is what I wrote in response to her blog post:
So first, I had this whole paragraph written and my computer shut down. So frustrating cause I put a lot of thought into it. =) Anyway, I agree with you on your evaluation of friendships. At this point in life, you want friendships that will stick. It's easier to believe in the good of the other person because you think they are more mature. Sometimes this is true and sometimes this is not. I think of our friendship and I know that we've survived some rough times. I'm thankful that we've rekindled the fire of our relationship (even if just more recently). Life brings so many changes: dating, marriage, children and in the midst of all that, you face life's issues - some that are extremely hard. A true friend will ebb and flow with you through those times. A true friend will give and respect the space needed. A true friend will be there to embrace you when the time is right. Friendship is definitely not cookie cutter. (Ok ok...I'm thinking I should blog a response to this so that I don't write more than you...haha) I have so many thoughts on this. GREAT BLOG POST!  

When I read Samaria's post, I was reminded how at the beginning of the year, I was praying a lot for friendships that "stuck." Friends that I could trust no matter what I was going through.  There are times in life that we need alone time. There are times I need friends more than ever. There are also times I need friends to give me space.  Sometimes I need a friend when my kids are "acting up".   Sometimes I need a friend to give me space when my kids are acting up.  Sometimes I need a friend to sit with me and just talk about nothing and not expect anything in return after I have a baby. Sometimes I need a friend to stay home and give me the space needed right after I have a baby.  Like I said in response to Samaria's post: "friendship is not cookie cutter," there is no formula.

As I'm writing this, I am realizing how much I need friends to give love and respect my need for space.  I have this God given desire to sometimes be alone at times, to sometimes be with one other person and to sometimes be with a whole group of people. Like I wrote earlier, at this point in life, I need friends that understand and respect this and in spite of their agreement or disagreement with that statement, can still love me.   One thing I have learned from friends is that I cannot depend on them for my happiness.  That has to come from God alone. God alone is what can give me that eternal joy...not matter what happens in my friendships.   

Proverbs has many great verses about friendships.  A few that really stick with me:

Proverbs 27:17
"As iron sharpens iron, so a man sharpens the countenance of his friend." 

Proverbs 27: 5-6
"Open rebuke is better than love carefully concealed. Faithful are the wounds of a friend."

As I read the second one, I think about how a faithful friend will "rebuke" when needed and will be there to help you pick up the pieces.  There are so many good verses about friends and God knew we would need His word to lean on through life! Thank goodness for His word that never changes!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Sex and the City #2

All this month we've had a great series on SEX at our church, City Church.
You may be wondering what kind of church does a series on sex.  Well, it's a church that's right on with what God wants His kids (us) to know.  I can't tell you how many times this past month I've seen "sex issues" on TV. On Dr. Phil, The Doctors, Dr. Oz....you name it, it's probably been on there at least a couple times this past month.
So many times I've watched part of these shows only to be disappointed with what they are presenting.  It doesn't line up with God's word and no one wants to stand up for presenting sex within a marriage.  All the talk shows only mention your "partner."  For some reason I don't like that word.  Chad is my partner yes but he is so much more than that. HE IS MY HUSBAND, the one who God has chosen for me, who He created for me. Therefore, I will call him, Chad, my HUSBAND!!

One thing I absolutely love is how God had already designed sex to be great in marriage.  Here is why God gave says He gave us the gift of sex.

(These are from Intimate Issues)
1. I gave the gift of sex that you might create life. (Gen 1:28)
2. I gave the gift of sex for intimate oneness. (Gen 2:24)
3. I gave the gift of sex for knowledge. (Gen 4:1)
4. I gave the gift of sex for pleasure. (Prov. 5:15, 18-19)
5. I gave the gift of sex as a defense against temptation. (1 Cor 7:2, 5)
6. I gave the gift of sex for comfort. (2 Sam. 12:24)

When I saw all of these reasons I was amazed.  I knew about 1, 2 and 4 but I had know idea about the rest of them.  I love how God has so many "surprises" for us even after we have been saved for years.  The Bible says: (I Corinthians 2:7) "But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, the hidden wisdom which God ordained before the ages for our glory."
I love how the word of God is a mystery that can only be revealed a little at a time.  I love how we did this series at church to reveal these mysteries to me at this time.


What about you, what new mysteries in God's word have you discovered lately? Maybe some from this series? Maybe you're reading this and you've discovered a new mystery...if so let me know.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Sex and the City

When you think of a title like that, what do you think? 

Do you think movie that you would never watch? 

Do you think, yeah what an awesome movie?

Do you think...that's a church doing a series on SEX?

Well, I think the last one.  This past month has been all about SEX. That's right S.E.X.  You didn't read it wrong.  You read it exactly right.  We've been talking about God's design for sex at our church, City Church.  When I think about the TV Series Sex and the City, I get disgusted (honestly).  I could never watch it because it was just a bit much for me.  Even thinking about the movie, there was never even a second that I would have thought about watching it.  Maybe that's not so for some of you.  Growing up the way I did, I never talked about sex much even with my friends.  I thought about it some and wondered what it would be like on my wedding day but it was not a subject of discussion. 
Of course as that day got closer I thought about it more, but even then it was very guarded.  It was guarded so much so that it was almost too much.  (Now I'm not saying that if you're single, you need to be thinking about sex.) What I am talking about is: God's Design for sex within a marriage.  (Check back for that post in a few days).

Sumer (a good friend and co-leader of our family life group) told me about this wonderful book: Intimate Issues by Linday Dillow and Lorraine Pintus.  I've read some good books but this one is by far the most informative, straight-forward, and point-blank book on sex that I have read.  Before I got married, I read Intended for Pleasure (totally recommend if you're about to get married) but for after you have kids and after all the honeymoon stuff dies down (and yes it does), you need something, someone to give you advice.  You need someone who's been there.
Come'on be honest...who of you is going to go to your pastor (if you're a christian) and ask them about some of your most secret sex questions?   Anyone.....anyone? (Think Ben Stein here).  Ok, so there are not many people who would want to do that.  But you still have questions.  Right?

The book Intimate Issues talks about the top 21 Questions Christian woman have.  It does a fine breakdown of the Song of Solomon. Even if you have read it while thinking about your spouse, you've never read it the way they describe it....I'm pretty sure about that one. =)  I think Sumer will agree with me on this one. =)

Stay tuned for more on this......

Thursday, October 22, 2009

One thing that irritates me..



So I'm going to be completely honest here. =) 

I was at the chiropractor a few days ago getting a much needed massage (a blessing that came as a result of all of Amaya's surgeries). As I was waiting, I saw a couple with two small children that reminded me very much of my own.  The girl looked almost like she was Amaya's age and the boy looked a bit older than Mak.

Since I love watching kids, I smiled as I watched the kids begin to play.  Then as I proceeded to be polite, I said hi and I asked how old they were.  The mother and father both looked at me with a "very polite" look: "She is 2 1/2 and he is 11 mo." I say, "I thought they looked about like mine. I have a 2 1/2 yr old and a 9 mo. old."
This was followed by some polite stares that said, "please don't talk to us again...I don't know why you talked to us in the first place."  YIKES!

After that small uncomfortable conversation took place, I was called back and given that much needed massage.  But as I thought about the exchange that took place, I remembered how I had tried to strike up a conversation with the father once before with the same result. Some people are just super grouchy or super stuck on themselves...or perhaps they've had something bad happen and they don't want to talk to someone who looks like a teenager and shouldn't be having kids ??  I'm trying to give them the benefit of the doubt but for some reason that irritated me at the time.  I'm supposed to be loving and giving...I guess that doesn't mean other people will be the same.

I think the thing that gets me the most is that looking at them, they looked like a very friendly couple.  They look like someone we (Chad and I) might have a lot in common with.  This gets me thinking about the "vibe" I give off when I'm around people I don't know.  I always try to smile a lot and engage in some conversation - even if it is just about our kids...at least we have that in common.  I hope I'm always friendly. =)

On another note: my pretty girl (otherwise known as Amaya) "called" some new people today.  We have this alarm clock that looks kinda like a phone and anything that looks like one, is one. =)  So she is calling people and telling me who she is calling.  She always wants "Mommy" to talk to them first (that's a good sign - cause mommy will have to see who she is talking too and make sure it's appropriate).  Anyway, so today she called, Sabannah (othewise known as Savannah), Sabwina (otherwise known as Sabrina) and Bwenda (otherwise known as Brenda). I'm not sure when she saw Savannah last but it must have left a good impression on her. =) Sabrina was in the nursery on Sunday night and she's talked about that night since then. Brenda baby-sat for a bit over summer so Amaya just remembers her and always wants to say hi, but hardly ever does...silly girl.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

What are they talking about?

So Samaria and I were talking about getting ideas for blog posts and I'm STUCK!

Here is one of the ideas we talked about that I've seen before.
Go to your picture files go to the third file and find the fourth picture and blog about it. Well, I have to say the fourth picture was not a good picture so I went to the third pic and it included my mom and she would rather not be on here soooo I went to the fifth picture.

This is a picture of my brother, Mervin on the left and my bro-in-law, Doug on the right. They were getting ready for my brother, (DeWayne) Dewey's wedding.


What do you think they are talking about?

Friday, October 9, 2009

Wisdom

This morning as I was reading in Proverbs, I am once again reminded of just how cool God is.


Proverbs 8:11
For wisdom is better than rubies, and all the things one may desire cannot be compared with her.

Proverbs 8:30-31
Then I was beside Him as a master craftsman; and I was daily His delight, rejoicing always before Him, Rejoicing in His inhabited world, and my delight was with the sons of men. 

Proverbs 9:10-11
The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy One is understanding.  For by me your days will be multiplied, and years of life will be added to you. 

Wisdom: Delights in me!
Wisdom: Everything my heart desires cannot compare with her!
Wisdom: the fear of the Lord is only the beginning!
Wisdom: will multiply my days!
Wisdom: will add years of life!
Wisdom: speaks excellent things!

I am so thankful for God's wisdom in my life.  What really stood out to me this morning is how wisdom is better than rubies and that all the things I desire cannot be compared with her.  It made me think of all the things I was desiring right now.  Things I want to happen right now...things I want to change.  All those things cannot compare to wisdom.  I then started thinking how important wisdom is.  "She" (as the Bible refers to wisdom) was there at the beginning, when God was forming the earth, as a master craftsman. Wisdom was daily HIS delight. Wisdom also delighted in the sons (and daughters) of men. Wisdom was with God and wisdom is with me, helping me and guiding me.

I then had to think of my precious kids, how I desire them to live for God and give their hearts to Jesus.  As I read the scripture: "The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom", I had to thank Jesus for those "words of wisdom." One small fear I've had: will my kids serve the Lord with all their heart?  Will they choose to live the life that He has given them? This scripture quieted those fears this morning. When my kids accept Jesus as their Lord and savior, the fear of the Lord will be deposited in their hearts...when they have that fear, it is only the beginning of wisdom.  It is only the beginning.....

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Creepy...


So I was looking for some pictures of pillows today and I came across these...anyone else think these are a bit creepy?



Sunday, October 4, 2009

My pretty girl!

Just couldn't do a post all about Mak and not do one for my pretty girl Amaya.

For all you Bambi lovers out there here's a good story:
This morning Amaya saw a deer outside and she said, "Mommy I go chase the deer?"
I said, "No, Amaya...we have to go to church."
Amaya said, "Daddy, kill the deer?"
....and mommy laughed!

She knows her daddy....

I forgot to add earlier: She is almost fully potty trained now.  I was training her but was always putting diapers on her when I went out.  My sisters came last weekend and because we were so busy she spent the entire weekend in diapers.  On Tuesday after they left I put her in her underwear pants (as she calls them) and she has not had a "full" accident since.  She has started to pee in the undies but has stopped.  That has been the extent of her accidents. I am so proud of her.  This is a big step.   I still put her in diapers for nap time and night time so that is the next step.  
I went to church today and she stayed dry so YAY!  Now I have to try it when I go grocery shopping....she had a diaper when I went Friday but she stayed dry the entire time...woohoo.

Mak is 8 months old and moving

Makiyah is 8 months + now.

He started officially crawling at 7 months 3 weeks.  I can't believe it.  He never went through the army crawl phase like Amaya did. He just decided one day that he can get up on all fours and take off.  He actually took his first two "crawls" the day before Labor Day.  I know I shouldn't compare him to Amaya but I do.  =)  Amaya was at least 9 mo. old before she did the actual crawl.  I've heard this is typical - boys do things fast (physically) than girls.

He's already starting to pull himself up on his toys.  He doesn't have the strength to always stay there.  It's actually a bit humorous.  He will fall and lay there for a bit and get the biggest smile.  I have to laugh b/c typically in that situation a baby would cry.  He is anything but typical.

A few months ago when I was praying for Makiyah, the Lord spoke to me and said that Mak would make people smile.  We had a bit of a rough time when he was a newborn and baby so it actually made me cry to hear that (go figure). =)  Anyway, he's been making me laugh and smile ever since.  I love the Lord!!

Mak has two teeth now but I'm still nursing. I am excited to make it past 9 months (the time I quit with Amaya because she simply had no more interest).


My handsome man, Mak!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Reflections

Last night we had our amazing life group.  I am finding that more and more I leave with "nuggets" to think about over and over during the week.  I am so thankful for our "family city group". God is doing something!

Not only has it been a blessing, it has been a challenge.  It's a challenge in a good way. God challenges me to think and reflect on me.  Last night, I believe Jeremy was talking and he mentioned two things that people do - it was two opposite things...both negative things -JUDGING AND BEING JUDGED.- I realized I've been on both ends of that.  Judging and being judged for decisions that I have made.  This is so negative and does not create any sort of lasting friendship.  Our series this month has been on the book, Walk Across the Room by Bill Hybels.

Sidenote:
My friend, Samaria just wrote blog post on a book that she really loved.  Check it out - that book is next on my list of reading material. Sounds great Samaria - thanks for the blog post.

The book I mentioned above (Walk Across the Room) is one of the greatest books I've read in a while.  I often have a hard time reading and finishing a book (I do have to mention that I still have a few pages to finish in the book). I usually start and read the first 2-3 chapters and then I lose interest.  This book along with the series at life group has really been a kick in the rear to change some things in me that needed changing.

So going back to last night's life group (have to go take care of the kiddos for the time being - love being a parent - just need to adjust to the interruptions) I'm back now several hours later.

Last nights life group we talked about how "friends" like to judge one another especially in the church instead of going through life's lessons with one another and being there for each other.  I've been guilty of this so many times. I have such a high standard for myself that I often forget that I put that on other people too.  I often think I can't make any mistakes and when I do, I beat myself up. This is not what God intended...he intended for GRACE to be present every day that I live.  Going on the other side...being judged is just as bad...it creates a place where you can't trust and where you have a hard time loving.

The easy solution here is just LOVE! Love those around you!  Let God's love change your heart! LOVE! LOVE! LOVE!

Ok so this is really hard to do...REALLY REALLY HARD! Especially if you try to go at it alone.  Change is hard anyway you look at it but I think this is one of the hardest things to change.  You have to change your vision and how you look at the world.

Lord give me eyes to see like you see.  Give me a vision for those around me.  Change my heart and my mind to be pure and holy before you and before others. I ask you to take any judgment out of my heart and replace it with love. Help me to extend grace to my friends and any new friends I make.  I love you Jesus!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Yuck!

It's been a bit of an eventful morning around here.  Not with the kids this time...it just involves a spider.
I'm not a fan of spiders...I shudder just thinking about them. Anyone with me?

The other day I noticed two little black spiders on our ceiling but forgot about them since it was lunch time which is always followed by nap time preparations.  (side note: I think we had some spiders hatching in our house b/c this is the third spider I've seen in just a few days).  This morning I was checking my email and I noticed something out of the corner of my eye...it came down and slid underneath the keys on the computer. It was so subtle that i barely noticed it...but then I remembered the spider that had been living on our ceiling.  I hit the key that I thought it went under and then went to take care of one of the kiddos (I believe Amaya was sitting on the potty). 

Then I came back and thought I would just forget about it. HA...not really!  I cannot stand spiders...I don't like the thought of spiders, I don't like to see them, I don't like them near me...ICK!  (Arachnophobia - I think I saw that movie one too many times)

So I proceeded to lift the entire laptop on it's side and I hit all the keys and finally I saw the little legs sticking out of the keys. (Another shudder from me).  I hit the key gingerly so it would leave the computer keyboard but so I wouldn't squish it.  It was a fast one...it scurried out and went who knows where.
At this point I had a decision to make...do i just pretend that all that never happened and sit down and finish my emailing for the morning?  Or do I try to find it?

I almost did the first one but then I decided that I would constantly be checking all around me to make sure it wasn't crawling on me. Soooooo with a fly swatter in hand, I picked up all the things around me and finally something moved. You should have seen me as  I moved everything, you would have thought it was a huge snake.  I was ready to jump back at any moment. LOL In fact I did retreat after I first saw it but then SMACK!  I got it on the first try. 

No spider is going to survive my deadly fly swatter. Now if only I knew where that last spider was... =/
 

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Amaya and Mak Comparison

Hey all...I just thought I'd do something fun.  Everyone is always saying how much Amaya and Mak look alike so I did a comparison. 

What do you think?
 
 

Thursday, September 10, 2009

It's a New Day!

What a beautiful morning!  The sun is shining. Amaya is enjoying her new favorite show on TV - Clifford!  Mak is taking a nap and I'm enjoying this time blogging.

One of our (Chad and Mine) goals for the next few months is to run/walk a 5K charity event.  Bloomington always has a lot of running events in the fall so we'll just have to see what we want to support.  (I haven't actually checked it out so I'm hoping there are some in Oct. so we have time to get ready.)
One of the reasons for our goal is to lose some weight.  I figured it out...between the two of us we would like to lose 35-40 lbs...WOW! That's a lot.  We can do it.  I recently stepped on the scales and realized that I gained weight since Mak has been born. This wasn't a complete surprise since that happened with Amaya.  I really had to work at losing the weight after she was born so I figured I would have to do the same this time.  I was hoping I wouldn't have to but didn't quite work out that way.

At least now Chad and I can work on our goal together. It's hard when you have a busy life but I want to make sure I am healthy to enjoy my kiddos when they get older.

My second goal (which will take longer) is inspired by what I read on Darcy's blog yesterday.  Check it out.  It's a beautiful story!  Love this blog - our kiddos are about the same age and seem to be a lot alike. =)

So my goal is to grow out my hair and donate it.  I've done it once and it was a great feeling but actually very hard to let go of my hair.  I did like my short hair once I had done it.  The first time I did it - it took me a while to grow it out - couple years so I think I have at least a year and a half left.  I had been thinking about doing it so I had only gotten my hair trimmed the last two cuts but usually I get to a certain point and then want a change again.  This time I'm going to do it!! Thanks Darcy for the inspiration!

Leaving you with some of my favorite pics of Mak and Amaya from the last week.

Here is Amaya after I curled and "styled" her hair....just having fun with her hair. She doesn't let me play with it very much so I take advantage of the times she does. =) 

Monday, September 7, 2009

Amaya

I'm just dedicating this post to by beautiful girl Amaya.
These days there is so much I forget to post about.  She is getting so big.  She says so many things now and I can't keep track of them all. For some reason recently she's become a bit camera shy so I try to capture other images of her.  Here we were outside playing while Daddy was parking cars for IU. 

Just thought I would add a couple funny sayings of hers:


A computer is: on-cue-ber
Tony the tiger is: Tiger the Pony

I love my little girl!

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Mak at 7 months

Makiyah is now 7 months (ok over 7 months)  Here are some cute pics I took close to his 7 month birthday.
 
Isn't he handsome?

I'm so proud of him...he can finally sit up on his for for a few seconds.  He has started to get up in the crawl position and just rock. And he has his first tooth now...in honor of Teresa's birthday. =)

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Marshmallowkaylan & Lammie

We welcome the newest members of our family:
Marshmallowkaylan and Lammie (or Lambie).
Born: August 26
Weight: 14 oz.

Thank you grandma for taking Amaya to Build-A-Bear to create our new family members.

Amaya had a lot of fun and she chose a cream lamb. 

Here is the conversation Amaya and I had when I asked her what she wanted to make with Grandma.

Me: "Amaya what color do you want your BEAR to be? Black, Brown, Light Brown"
Amaya: "Just brown Mommy"
Me: "Do you want your bear to have a skirt?"
Amaya: "No"
Me: "Pants?"
Amaya: "Yes"
Me: "What color pants?"
Amaya: "Red"
Me: "What color shirt do you want the bear to wear?"
Amaya: "White"

Me: "All right, that's my girl!  Red and white."

Amaya: "Look Mommy like this bear" (she shows me her "IU" bear that has a red shirt on)

I must say (for you Samaria) my little girl is a smart one.


Here is Amaya pushing her new babies out of the store.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Mak @ 6 Months

Makiyah,
You're six months old already. Actually 6 1/2 months. So crazy. It really seems like yesterday you were born. I don't want to go back and repeat those early months but I can't believe how fast time flies.

At six months you can:
Flip over front to back and back to front.
You can move yourself around by flipping. You don't want to stay in one place very long.
You laugh and laugh! You have a great belly laugh and I can make you laugh almost any time I want to.
You have already managed to wiggle out of the bumbo (thankfully w/o hurting yourself, even though it was on the hard kitchen floor.)
You finally sleep through the night.
You take pretty good naps throughout the day too.

Finally finishing this at 7 months
You move backwards - not quite a crawl but almost.
You definitely love your mommy - ME =) a lot!  When you see me you almost always want to be picked up.
You love when Amaya plays with you - you don't even mind when she lays on top of you. You just laugh as we are trying to discipline Amaya and let her know that she can't do that.  Silly boy.

You make mommy smile.

Hello, I'm a parent, and I survived.

I just finished this email to my life group...thought it was good posting material.

A few weeks ago I wrote about persevering.  I've had to persevere just to get this email written.  I looked at the time it autosaved: 11:46...right now it's 3:01.  WOW!!  That's how my day has been.  Mak just cried (intermittently) for about 2 hours while I in the mean time tried to figure out what was wrong. He was asleep each time I put him to bed (4x to be exact) and then each time woke up screaming....ahhhhh.
This is definitely not a joy of parenting...I won't even joke about it.  I know you've all been there (well except for the Warsaws). =)

 
So now, after tylenol and teething gel he is finally asleep.  Is he getting teeth, you ask?  I have no idea but if that's why he was crying at least we're covered.

Today I have no great message about something the Lord gave me...I just simply survived...I am a parent. 

Anyone else have those, "Hello, I'm a parent and I survived" days?

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Life is fragile....

So many hardships we face in life are so small compared to the big picture. What is the big picture?
The big picture is this...if we know Christ we have and know what happens after death.

My sister just lost her mother-in-law last night. Her husband lost his mom and their kids lost their grandma. She was just 61 years old. She was supposed to be around for many, many more years.

When I think of them my heart breaks today. I am sad for their family. I am sad that she went home so soon. At the same time that I am sad, I know that she has found her eternal home in heaven. She is singing with the angels. What a glorious time she must be having. Although we have tears here on earth, she is smiling - no longer in pain, no longer hurting.

Do you have that assurance today...the assurance that when you die, you will go to heaven? Do you know Him, the one who loves you with a love like no other.

Father, I lift up the Hershberger family to you. In this sad time give them a comfort in knowing you. I ask you to wrap your loving arms around them and speak to them words of life and love. I ask you to give them a peace in their minds and help them remember the things they loved about Mary and the good times they had with her here on earth. I ask you give comforting thoughts to the grandchildren - Cole, Aliyah, Brodie and Sydney, and children, Brad, Doug and Jill. Give them a greater understanding of your ways and your love. I pray also for Paul her dear husband for years. I pray comfort and peace for him. Thank you Lord! In Jesus Name I pray, Amen.

There is coming a day,
When no heartache shall come,
No more clouds in the sky,
No more tears to dim the eye,
All is peace forevermore,
On that happy golden shore
What a day glorious day that will be!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Wow...so behind

I've been a terrible blogger as of late...I did want to share a some pics of a photoshoot I had with Darcy Holsopple Photography. Wish Chad would've been with me..he had to stay behind since he has a full-time job now.

Me and the kids


I wanted one of us running b/c Amaya is always saying, "run mommy run."


My man - Mak



My girl - Amaya

the sisters....

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Amaya

Had my very own photoshoot today with Amaya. =) I was just having fun taking pics outside of my pretty little "big girl." Here are a few of my favorites from today.Isn't she a cutie?


I call the one in the middle her "bad girl" pose. I'm not sure what she was doing at the moment I took the picture but it made me laugh. In the bottom one she is sitting by Mak as she is telling him what is on her puzzle pieces.

For laughs: Today I asked her if she wanted to go outside and she said, "I don't know..maybe. I guess so." Totally funny because she LOVES to go outside.

Monday, June 22, 2009

My little girl

For some laughs:

Yesterday I asked Amaya a question and she looked at me and said, "actually, yes." It was so funny because it fit whatever I asked. What a cutie.

When Amaya has something she doesn't want me to take away and I take it away, she looks at me and says, "Mommy don't take it away." (in a little girl whiny voice). It's usually not funny at the time but when I think that she is only two years old - it makes me smile.

Amaya's progress:
Amaya is doing great!! She is off antibiotics and last night when I asked her if she was hurting anywhere she smiled and said, "yes." So that really means no. It had been more than 6 hours since she had any pain medication so it looks like we're past that part too!! When I was asking her if it hurt anywhere she first pointed to her other side and then she smiled and said, "No mommy this ear is fine." When did she become such a big girl?

She's still sleeping @ 9:21 this morning so I think she has enjoyed a night of no medication interruptions - as did we!

The incision by her ear looks absolutely wonderful. I can't say the same for her neck but it looks like they had to stretch the skin to close it.

I'll have to get those pics posted so you can see.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Good Bye Riley (Children's Hospital)

The title is appropriate because we finally found out what has been causing Amaya's neck to become infected over and over and over and over. No that's not a typo. Her neck has had a small infected abscess about every 10 days since February. In fact it became so common that we didn't even get too concerned about it.

The neck infection procedure:
It would look great like it was healing up. A couple hours later we saw a little white spec about the size of a pen tip. A few more hours it was the size of a kernal of corn and then by the next day it had usually tripled or quadrupled in size and then sometime in that day we would have to "pop" it to allow the pus to come out. The last two times this has been horrible. The second to last time she threw her arms up so hard and unexpectedly that I bit my tongue which left a nice red mark for several days. Not a fun time for either of us.

Timeline:
June 2008 - Chad and I noticed a small pea-sized bump under the skin in Amaya's neck. We decided that we would talk to the doc next time we went.

November 2008 - On a Thursday we noticed that the bump under her skin had gotten noticeably bigger. By Friday evening we were really concerned since it seemed to have doubled. We had an appointment on Sat. morning. She started antibiotics right away. By Sunday afternoon it started turning red. It was more red on Monday and by Tuesday afternoon had started to get really "tight." On Wednesday it had started scabbing and we noticed the first signs of pus. Wednesday at 10pm she had her first surgery which left a gaping hole in her neck.

December 2008 - Infection returned again - another round of antibiotics

January 2009 - Second surgery

March 2009 - Infection returned again and again - antibiotics again

May 2009 - Infection returned again about every 10 days - no antibiotics

June 10, 2009 - YESTERDAY
We went to Riley for a scheduled surgery on her neck. This surgery was supposed to last about an hour and then we could come home again. (In and out in one day). We were in the waiting room and the nurse came to give us and update and from the look on her face it seemed like something had happened. She told us that Dr. Engum would come talk to us as soon as the surgery was done but it looked like they would have to continue to work on her.
As Dr. Engum was working he found that the trac that he had taken out in January had completely returned (not a good sign) and that it was connected to something up near her ear. This was not his specialty so he called in another surgeon for Ear Nose and Throat. At the time that he was talking to us the other Dr. was already removing Amaya's left tonsil to see if the Branchial cleft (pharyngeal arch) ended in her tonsil. Disclaimer: I really don't know if I have all the medical terminology right but this is what I remember. We waited for another 2 hours or so and then we were called down to another floor to talk with the other Dr.
He said that they didn't find the end of trac in her tonsil so they would have to do another surgery cutting at the front edge of her ear and up the back and then coming back down again. (An S shape) He explained that there were risks associated with this surgery. The facial nerve could be damaged. At worst she could lose some function in the left side of her face. At best the nerve was not near the trac and nothing would happen.

From that point she would be in surgery another 3 hours.

WOW - 3 hours! So long to wait to see your little girl. I was never worried about the surgery but the facial nerve thing did worry me a little bit. I was sitting there and I realized that I really did have peace about the surgery and to me it didn't matter how long it took. I wanted them to be thorough and I just wanted this whole ordeal to be done. It's been almost 7 months to date from the first surgery to this one.
We waited and then waited some more and then they ended up being done sooner than they expected.

This is a whole lot of info so I will update more later. It's been a looooong two days for everyone involved. The important thing is that this evening Amaya finally gave us a full real smile something she hadn't done since yesterday morning.

Here are some links to some older posts concerning this subject it starts from the oldest to the most recent. All of these posts were sometime in Nov. and Dec. 2008.
Our Recent Journey
Sunday Updates
More Updates
Our Riley Appointment
Amaya Updates

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Riley Update

We had an appointment for Amaya at Riley almost two weeks ago now. Dr. Engum told us that we would need to schedule another surgery so he can try and figure out what is going on in that little neck of hers. =/

I'm not very happy at this news since this is the THIRD surgery that she has had since Nov. I know in the big scheme of things this is not big but I think about my life and I have NEVER had a surgery and she is just TWO.

Thankfully our insurance should cover everything since Chad just started his new job two weeks ago now so we don't have a whole lot saved up.

Please pray for Amaya for complete healing. This has been one of the most frustrating things I have ever experienced in my life. Probably the most. I want to understand what's going on.

Chad and I both want it to heal up completely without any recurrances. We were just talking the other day about getting a second opinion. When is the right time to do that? How do you do that? Our doc. says, he just doesn't understand what's going on. What we want to say is, "FIGURE IT OUT!!"

"Many are the afflictions of the righteous but the Lord delivers him out of them all." Psalm 34:19

Thank you Lord for your unfailing love. Thank you Lord for your mercy and grace in times of frustration. Thank you that you hold nothing against me. I trust you Lord to deliver me.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Keep Me focused...

on you Jesus!

Today was one of those days where I was just plain tired. I know when I am tired my mind seems to wonder. I think about so many different things and then it turns negative.

We had another Riley appointment for Amaya today so we got up early. I didn't get to bed until about midnight and then Mak got up around 6 and then didn't go back to sleep like he normally does. Didn't really matter because I knew we were going to be driving soon. Anyway, I got back and almost fell asleep while feeding him. I knew I should take a nap but had 5 loads of laundry to do and dishes and a messy house. If it had just been the dishes and messy house I would have said forget it. Couldn't do that b/c you see we are leaving for Shipshewana tomorrow as soon as Chad gets off work.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Chad has a new job!

Finally...Chad has a new job. After months of praying and frustrations on my part, he finally has a job. I have to admit that I believed a door would open but my hope was getting thin.

He was called last week to talk with a company he had interviewed with in Dec. That job that he interviewed for at that time was phased out of the company because of budget issues. They told him at that time that he was their #1 candidate and that they would call him if something else came up. It came up and his first day was today. PRAISE GOD!!

When he went to talk with them on Wednesday, they asked him how much he would like (money-wise) and he gave them a range and then came home and told me all about it. =) A few hours later they offered him the job. They salary they offered him was +$5,000 what he had asked for.

What an awesome blessing!! For a while now it's been a struggle financially. When Chad told me about our budget, I got worried because we were short several hundred dollars. I say this because in all the months that we should have fallen short, we never did. God faithfully provided as His word says. We have been faithful in our tithes and offerings. On top of that, we also started giving to our church building fund. (Totally Chad's doing on that part. I definitely did not have the faith for that.) I often have a difficult time when it comes to finances. I worry when I shouldn't! God has always taken care of us....ALWAYS!! We've had two prophetic words given to us about God's favor being on us! That is truly the case with us!!

On Saturday, Chad was mowing and he found lots and lots of mushrooms on the edge of our property...just another way that God's favor is on us. =) It's a little funny to think of finding mushrooms as God's favor but it was a great ending to an already great week.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Days that end in Y - #2

So I said it was to be continued...here is more.

While I'm so thankful for God's grace in my asking, I want to be more trusting. I want to trust Him and never doubt. I want to be so in tune with Him and always know without any doubt that He is going to take care of us.

I have a difficult time looking at Him without thinking I have to do something.

For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith
---and this not from yourselves---
it is from God.
Ephesians 2:8

There have been so many times, I beat myself up about what I haven't done, what I'm supposed to be doing. In whom do I put my trust? God asked me simply to believe Him. So many times I'm trying to please man because it makes me look better. Jesus help me please you and you alone in ALL things!

So this weekend, Rod Aguillard gave my husband and I word from the Lord. He said the Lord's FAVOR is surrounding us.