Friday, December 18, 2009

It's the Big BIRTHDAY!!!

My first thought when I woke up at a decent time this morning:

It's our son's BIRTHday!!!

That was at 7 something, not at the 4:15am when my nurse was kind enough to bring me some toast and juice before my no more eating cutoff. I love my nurses, I really do. I firmly believe God has used them in my life and hopefully I've been used in their's. My nurse last night was Jen, and she came in before we went to sleep just to chat and answer any questions and give us an idea of what to expect today, and really, God used her to calm my spirit.

I had been excited, but also incredibly scared up to then, and after talking with her, my heart was just anticipating meeting our son. Maybe because she and her husband have had a miscarriage and are having difficulties being pregnant, so we talked about the struggles of trying to get pregnant...and that made me remember what a blessing it was just to get pregnant, how we didn't know if we'd keep this boy, and now that he wants to make an early appearance, how still incredibly blessed we are to just be having a child.

So many people would love to be in our shoes, not because of the issues, but because we're having a baby today!!!

And so, no fear, I'm just excited and praying very hard for the whole process today.
And I can't wait to meet my son and to see the expression on my husband's face when we see him for the first time.

Okay, time to cry... :-)

But really, God be praised for this whole journey and this day. We're so thankful for all our friends and loved ones who have and are praying for us. We are truly blessed beyond what we deserve.

I can't wait to introduce you to my son!!!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Tomorrow's the BIG Day!

So for the record, my attitude has improved greatly. And my day nurse yesterday and today is really lenient and lets me take breaks from the monitoring. And last night they let me off to go for a wheelchair ride and just to chill. Then when I went to bed I only had to have it on for 2 times during the night for an hour each. So, I slept better and got some reprieve.
Today I'm strapped down again, but we're on a countdown...tomorrow's the big day!


And yes, I'm still terrified and excited all at once, but mostly just ready to meet my son and see what the future holds. I can't control the events of tomorrow, how surgery will go, how healthy baby will be, how I'll recover, etc...I just keep praying for our son's health and that we'll both have peace and be relaxed. And for the doctors who care for both me and the baby, for wisdom, steady hands, etc...
And for my husband. I almost wonder if he's got the bigger job, he's got to take care of both of us. He'll go with baby right away but I'm sure he'll be doing some running back and forth to some extent. Thankfully both my and Andy's parents will be here so that will help give him some support.
I'm so incredibly thankful and in awe of my husband. He's handled this whole situation and every circumstance with his typical steady reliability and calmness. I don't know how he does it but I'm sure thankful for him. He's taken amazing care of me and been my rock at the same time. He's been here bored with me and waited on me hand and foot and let me cry when I need to.
He's going to be an amazing Dad and I just keep hoping our son is like him, both at birth and in character as he grows. He has an amazing example before him. Okay enough or I'll be crying again. It just touches my heart to think of how our son will view his Daddy...because he's pretty incredible.

So tomorrow's the day, and today we're just hanging out trying not to think about it to much. Of course it's all we can think about.
We'll probably try to get me released from monitors later this evening long enough to get some pictures together one last time before the 2 (and a half with the dog) becomes 3.
We'll be a family of 3 (1/2) for Christmas...that's pretty cool.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Are They Trying to Drive Me Bonkers?!

So I figured it out...way back when when they used to put people in straightjackets, etc...they weren't in them because they were crazy, they became crazy being in them.
Because really, any of us when confined to a small space against our wishes will in fact start to lose our minds.
I should know, I'm on my way.

I've just been informed that I again for the 3rd day in a row have to have continuous monitoring of the baby's heartbeat via an itchy gooey monitor on my belly. Which doesn't sound so bad, except that I'm already stuck in bed let alone being held to pretty much one position or then if you move you have to readjust the monitor to pick up the baby's heartbeat again...

You'd think if I was stuck in bed being hooked up wouldn't make that big of difference, but it does. Because then you literally can't do anything. UGH...
Every little bit of freedom is worth rejoicing over. And when it's taken away, you kind of want to cry and scream.

It's just extra frustrating because it doesn't seem like the doctors get the frustration. I get that it's for the baby's well being, but really, he's been fine and even monitoring every other hour would be better.


I'm considering being a bad patient and refusing to be monitored. But then my nurse mother and others, including my husband, would have my head.

So I'll pretend to be a good patient and just start chewing the bed rails or something...

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

3 Days and Counting...

So today the doctor set an official date and time for our c-section.
Friday, December 18th at 1pm is the designated time for our son to enter the world.
Of course, things could change and we could have him's such a rollar coaster on that front in our lives. But that's the latest we'll meet our son. Which is good news, because it was supposed to be Saturday, because that was the official 34 week mark. But they'd prefer to do a c-section on a weekday when there's more staff around and at that point he's just hours shy of being 34 weeks. Which is close enough in the doctor's mind. Mine too because that cuts a day off the bedrest and an extra day with my son...

I can't tell you how excited and terrified I am to meet our son. It occured to me today to wonder if he'll be as handsome as his dad. I hope he's a spitting image of Andy personally. Although having my chubby cheeks might be expected. If he has any chubbiness to him, which being premature he might not. Someone at Caribou said they hope he has my eyes. Which I understand, that's what I get complimented on. But really, I love Andrew's eyes so much so a big part of me hopes he has Andrew's eyes.
The very fact that I'm thinking about these things is exciting. We'll be meeting our son in less than 72 hours!!!

Then there's the terrified part that isn't sure of what to expect. There's so many unknowns when you have a preemie baby. He could do amazingly fine and we'd miraculously be home by Christmas...which would be a miracle. Or every possible unfortunate scenario could happen and he could be here for months...we just don't know. I like to think he'll be at least reasonably healthy and that we'll be relaxed about the extra challenges of having a preemie. We're not in general overly worried or obsessive people. Hopefully that will carry over with our son. Although then I worry we'll be too laid back. Ugh...stop thinking about it.

All this to say, we won't know until he's here. And so, Friday is the much anticipated arrival date for Baby Boy Preston. I can't wait to celebrate our son's official Birthday. And celebrate we will, no matter how healthy he is or isn't. Because he's our son, and he'll be entering the world by God's Grace. And that's reason to celebrate.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Baby Adventures

I'm not totally where to start this post, other than to tell you it's going to be a doozy. I'll try to be concise, but it's going to be long, so bare with me.

I have to laugh reading the last 5 posts or so. I had such a bad attitude for no reason! Now I could have so many reasons to have a bad attitude, and God has used them to show me how blessed I really am. So here's the story:

When I wrote my last post about being thankful, we were at my parents home up North. We had a great weekend with friends and family and were planning on leaving on Monday the 30th to head home. Well, that didn't happen. I woke up that morning and had some serious bleeding (sorry guys). So we made a trip to the local small hospital where they ran a bunch of tests, including an ultrasound and monitoring the baby's heartbeat. They didn't find too much but were concerned, obviously. They wanted to keep me under observation until Wednesday, which I was having none of. The bleeding had stopped and I was not willing to sit in some little hospital without an OB for 2 days. So after some convincing and phone calls, the doctor was willing to release me Tuesday morning after talking to my OB as long as she took responsibility for my care and I saw her Tuesday afternoon when we got home. Which we did, and everything was still good, so it really looked like an isolated incident.
So, I went to work on Wednesday and tried to rest up.

Thursday morning came, at exactly 4AM because I was bleeding again, ALOT, so we made a hurried trip to the ER where they promptly rushed me up to the birthing center. Where after being hooked up to monitors they deduced I was having some contractions, which I wasn't feeling much by the way. Baby was doing mostly okay with them, so they gave me some drugs that made me feel VERY interesting to stop the contractions. I spent all of Thursday in the hospital, but things really quieted down, so at about 8:30pm they let me go home. Which I was excited about. :-) So we went home, I was able to shower, do the facebook thing, greet the dog who was incredibly glad we were around again, and try to get some sleep.

At about 12:30 that night I woke up because I had some more bleeding, but thankfully my doctor is amazing and had given me her personal cell phone number and told me to call her no matter the hour if something happened. So I called her then and she said to see if it would stop or if it got worse, etc... So I went back to sleep only to wake up at 5 with more fun I called the Doctor and she said "I'll see you at the hospital" so back we went...where they admitted me for at least 24 hours for observation...which they did, observe that is. It kind of looked like things were quieting down again, until the middle of the night that is...why do things always happen in the middle of the night?

So Saturday morning the Doctor did a bunch of tests and tried to see if my water had broke. It didn't seem like it, but was definitely having issues. Baby still was doing great, but me, not so much. By right after lunch, my doctor was done observing, and made the decision that I needed to be in a hospital with a NICU just in case. Thankfully, amid the protests of my nursing friends and mom :-) They let Andy drive me down to St. Cloud. Which has the closest NICU and a great one at that. It's only about an hour from Alexandria, and between Alex and the Twin Cities.

We got to the hospital around 4pm or so, they immediately got me to ultrasound to look at the baby. Baby looked pretty good but my amniotic fluid was a little low. Once I got back to my room they hooked me up to monitors and I tried to figure out why my hips hurt soooooooo bad...well duh, it hit me and the nurse a while later, I was having contractions that weren't on the monitor 'cause they were in my hips, ouch!!! That alone was enough to convince me I didn't need the experience of labor, especially in the midst of this craziness they wouldn't let me eat because they were worried I was going to be rushed to have a c-section. Thankfully, not the case.

I made it to Sunday, and my parents came down to see us as well, which was encouraging. They finally let me eat Sunday morning, I got to take a shower and dress in scrubs and not a gross hospital gown, etc...Also, I get fun super tight stockings to keep me from getting blood clots in my legs...gross, they are not fun!! But, better than blood clots I guess. Also when I'm sleeping they have these weird leg wrap things that inflate to help keep the blood flowing back to my heart rather than my legs. Anyway, I digress.

Monday morning they did a Biophysical ultrasound on baby, which is basically an ultrasound looking at 4 things, movement, practicing breathing, muscle tone....ummm don't remember the 4th one. Anyway, he scored a perfect 8/8 and I got to see the hair on top of his head!! Yay!! He's my super cute not bald baby!
Also they measured my amniotic fluid, which had dropped from 6.9cm on Saturday to 4.2cm on Monday. Which leads them to assume somewhere in all of this that my water broke. So I got put on tons of antiobiotics to prevent baby and me from getting an infection. And they set an end date to all of this being Saturday the 19th at which time I'll be 34 weeks.

So the sum of the matter is that I'm on bedrest here in St. Cloud hospital until baby comes, which could be anyday if things change, but the latest will be Saturday the 19th, because after that they consider the risks of staying pregnant in my condition to outweigh the benefits to the baby. But we need the precious days until them if the Lord allows. We really could have the baby anyday but hopefully it will be next Saturday. I made a mini calendar for myself out of notebook paper and crayons and am counting down the days. Which is incredibly exciting and scary all at once. Not just the medical/physical side of all this, but that we really will be parents soon, like we can say the day...We hadn't planned on baby being here until at least the middle of January and possibly February because it seemed like everyone in our families goes overdue. Well, not so much now.

So the synopsis is that my placenta is damaged on the edge which is what's causing all the problems and somewhere in there my water probably broke. Add to that the fact that baby is breech and it seems like we will almost definitely be having a c-section. Which if you had told me that 2 months ago I would have been sad and upset, but really, I'm okay with it. I've never obsessed about having a "completely natural" childbirth, although I did want to try as much as possible, I was just open to the possibility it wouldn't go that way. Which it's not, and that's okay. All I pray for now is a healthy delivery of our baby and no complications. However that comes about is okay with me. I do pray also that I won't have a ton of side effects and recover quickly, especially because baby will probably be in NICU for several weeks, I would really like to be able to be with him as much and as soon as possible, but again, the Lord knows best.

So things that now make me thankful:
~Baby is handling all this incredibly well. His heart is beating strong and he's kicking me!!
~I've seen a side of my husband I could never have imagined. His care for me has been amazing and incredible. He waits on me hand and foot and holds my hand when I cry or get upset...which I do a lot these's kind of a rollar coaster of emotions.
~Amazing friends and family...we've had so many people call or come visit and everyone who comes and visits brings us snacks or food or stuff to do. Plus Our super amazing adopted grandparents are caring for our "first baby" the dog, Dexter and we know we don't have to worry about him at all...although I miss him like crazy. Also a great church family who are taking care of details, like letting us borrow a car to get here since our car is still waiting to be fixed amid this insanity lately. And cleaned out our fridge and garbage and did the dishes we left there and did our dirty laundry too...who but true friends/family in Christ would do those gross things?
~Incredible nurses who make me laugh and almost overcare for me. Everyone who comes in the room, including the doctors want to know what they can get me, I'm so spoiled!! Evidenced by the nurse who sat and painted my toenails this afternoon. What a servant's heart!!
~An amazing God who's love and care overwhelms me at times. I'm so blessed that all this has been closely monitored and that He made it clear we need to be in this place where baby and I can be cared for so well. All of these things I've listed are blessings of God, and more than ever I can see how He's orchestrated the last few months of our lives to make this period as smooth as possible. God's so much more gracious than I deserve.

And so, it seems like we'll have delivered a baby within a short time...and I'm scared, and I'm excited, and I can't wait to meet this precious one God has given us. Again, I thought we'd have a big chunker of a baby, at least 9 pounds. Now if we make 5 pounds it'll be a huge blessing. So we're having a peanut instead of a chunk. And I can't wait to hold him. We are so blessed.

Friday, November 27, 2009

I AM Thankful

I AM Thankful
Lest my last two posts deceive you, I am feeling thankful on this Thanksgiving. I'm just also prone to discouragement...I could blog now about how our car needs a new ignition switch and therefore was towed from the grocery store to our garage and we had to borrow a car to make the 250 mile trip to my parents, or how halfway there in Wal-Mart I realized I had failed to pack some necessary clothing for any girl having gone through puberty. Or how expensive that was to buy at Wal-Mart...
But I won't, because really, I do have sooooo much to be thankful for.
So here's my list:

1. My salvation, and included in that, a God who is amazing and loves me so much that He died for me. Can't get any better than that.

2. My absolutely amazing, unbelievable, indescribable husband. He's God's perfect companion and leader for me. I love and respect him sooooo much!!

3. My soon-to-be-born Son. Have I ever mentioned that I'm sooooo glad we're having a boy? Don't get me wrong, I love girls, and I had always thought we would have a daughter first. That is, until I got pregnant, then I just knew, it was a boy. And for Andrew's sake, I was glad. But now, I am so enraptured with little boys, and the thought of having my own.

4. My family...It's soooo good to see my parents!!

5. Friends!! New and old, young and old...j/k!! I get to have breakfast with my two best friends from highschool tomorrow...I love them and their kindred spirits!! There's never any gaps with them, no matter how long it's been.

6. Our church family!! Because they really are a family, God knew what He was doing there. I can't imagine what the first 3 years of our marriage would have looked like without them.

7. My Puppy Dexter. He's a constant source of joy and consternation in my life. And a wonderful companion that I would miss so dearly.

8. A warm home.

9. Jobs that we get payed for. :-)

10. God's grace and mercy as I learn and grow to be more like Christ. For putting up with my unthankfullness and mistrust of the past few weeks. And teaching me to trust Him no matter what.

And so, I'm thankful, no matter what comes our way, the Apostle Paul got it right:

Philippians 4:11-13
11 Not that I am speaking of being in need, for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content. 12 I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. 13 I can do all things through him who strengthens me.

Which includes being thankful for the hard things. And so I'm thankful for trials in my life, and for a God who gives me grace and mercy no matter how I respond.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

To be Held

I think I sounded very melodramatic and depressed in my last post. Not sure this is going to be much different. I've realized I mostly am just having a really hard time trusting God that He's doing the right things...
Which, I have absolutely no right to do, so that whole "What are you doing God?!" attitude is definitely out.

We had our second childbirth class last night, and then we went to the grocery store to buy milk. And then when I forgot my WIC folder, we didn't buy the milk, I was crabby, and the car wouldn't start. You have got to be kidding me!! That was my attitude. We've known the car was tempermental for a while. It's actually just the ignition, it only likes to let you turn the key if you rub it and say nice things just the right way. Well last night it was done, no turning the key. So after many tears on my part, Andrew was a hero and walked home and got the truck to come pick me up. Thankfully we live less than a mile away. Anyway, we're supposed to be driving the 250 plus miles to my parents house tomorrow morning...and there's no way in my 30 plus weeks of pregnancy that I can make that drive in our very bouncy old I cried a lot.

Now, God is gracious and Andy's former roomate is letting us borrow his little Saturn to make the trip. So 1. It gets great gas mileage. 2. It's a stickshift, so it'll be fun to drive. But unfortunately 3. It's teeny tiny, and I'm not...enough said.

Basically, my attitude of gratitude is lacking deeply right now. Doesn't God know that we don't have the money to fix our car?! Doesn't He know that Andy can't take the time off work to go get the car towed home this afternoon? I know, He does know this and His answer is obviously...chill...I've got in under control...

These really are minor things, and we do have AAA praise the Lord, so the towing should be free, and we are blessed with friends who take care of us. But really,
I'm discouraged. I shouldn't be, I should be thrilled that our son is growing stronger everyday, that soon, I'll be holding him. That I have an amazing husband who I DON'T DESERVE who is soooo patient with me and loves me unconditionally. Not a lot of women can say that.
Yet, I dwell on the negative. And I let my emotions rule me. And I'm scared. Scared of how God's going to make it work, scared of what the future is bringing.
And yet, God is gracious and keeps giving me songs to comfort my heart.

"This is what it is to be loved and to know that the promise was that when everything failed, we'd be held..."

"Sometimes the way is lonely and steep and filled with pain, so if your sky is dark and pours the rain, then cry to Jesus, cry to Jesus, Cry to Jesus and live.

"We'll give thanks to You with gratitude
For lessons learned in how to trust in You
That we are blessd beyond what we could ever dream
In abundance or in need
And if You never grant us peace ...
But, Jesus, would You please ... "

So I'm going to cry, and ask God for His mercy and grace that I don't deserve to sustain me, and I'm going home to my Mommy too! :-) And really, God is gracious, I'm just discouraged. And I know He can handle my honestly. And He loves me anyway.

AND, HE GIVES US SNOW!!! IT'S SNOWING!!! What a reminder of His cleansing forgivness.
I have a lot to be thankful for, most of all, a God who loves me and holds me when I cry.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

True Gratitude

I've been reading lots of blogs and facebook messages about being truly thankful this time of year. Thanksgiving is less than a week away, and I really sense people, especially Christians, attempting to have a greater attitude of true Thanksgiving. I haven't been ignorant of this, and really, I agree. But somewhere deep in my heart this past week, I've been rebelling. Because I don't feel thankful.

I've always struggled my whole life with how God takes care of us and other people. For example, in college, I worked my tail off trying to pay my bills and not rack up credit card debt and get good grades. And then I'd listen to other people who played sports/did music/ didn't work talk about gifts (of money) that God bestowed upon them to pay their bills. And really, the attitude of "NOT FAIR!" crept into my heart. Okay, I was wrong, God is not fair to us, praise the Lord!! He is merciful and gracious and I certainly don't want what's "fair".

That said, I struggle with how God provides for others and seemingly not for us...which I've been so convicted of this week.

I have sooo very much to be thankful for, the biggest of which is my salvation. Then comes my husband, my soon to be born son, my extended family, my amazing church family, I could go on...but that's not the point either.

The point is this, I need to have an "attitude of gratitude" no matter what. Even if I have no physical possessions and poor health and no family. I'm loved by God and He's gracious enough to allow me to be saved and to serve Him. That's more than enough for an entire lifetime of gratitude.
There is a single gal who's been coming to our church lately. And she's teaching me a lot. She has so much she could complain about, no job, few possesions, no car, and she's trying so hard!! And whenever I talk to her, she's smiling and just thankful that someone picks her up for church. I managed to lay hold of some clothes this week that expanded her wardrobe by leaps and bounds. And I was convicted.

Money is tight for us, we've been pouring everything into our savings account for when I'm on maternity leave to be able to pay the bills. And so, Christmas is going to be interesting, and people don't understand that. I keep realizing how much a baby "needs" like sheets for the crib to start with! But then, when I'm freaking out because we don't have a dresser/changing table to put the baby's clothes in, I'm thankful we already have clothes for our baby and really, if we can't afford a dresser for him, he could care less that his clothes are stored in a rubbermaid.
And really, we "can" afford it, I'm just not willing to dig into that savings account. So I'm praying really hard and trusting God...because as these lyrics that have been going through my head all day say, what we "want" and what we "need" are so different!
"Oh, the differences that often are between
Everything we want and what we really need"
So, I'm going to meditate on this verse "And my God will supply every NEED of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus"
and this song will be in my heart as well...
and I'm grateful, for a God who loves me and died for me, for a husband who's doing such a great job of taking care of us, and for my son, dresser/cloth diapers/clothes and whatever else excluded...
And thank you Lord, for everything.

Nichole Nordeman "Gratitude"
Send some rain, would You send some rain?
'Cause the earth is dry and needs to drink again
And the sun is high and we are sinking in the shade
Would You send a cloud, thunder long and loud?
Let the sky grow black and send some mercy down
Surely You can see that we are thirsty and afraid
But maybe not, not today
Maybe You'll provide in other ways
And if that's the case ...

We'll give thanks to You with gratitude
For lessons learned in how to thirst for You
How to bless the very sun that warms our face
If You never send us rain

Daily bread, give us daily bread
Bless our bodies, keep our children fed
Fill our cups, then fill them up again tonight
Wrap us up and warm us through
Tucked away beneath our sturdy roofs
Let us slumber safe from danger's view this time
Or maybe not, not today
Maybe You'll provide in other ways
And if that's the case ...

We'll give thanks to You with gratitude
A lesson learned to hunger after You
That a starry sky offers a better view
If no roof is overhead
And if we never taste that bread

Oh, the differences that often are between
Everything we want and what we really need

So grant us peace, Jesus, grant us peace
Move our hearts to hear a single beat
Between alibis and enemies tonight
Or maybe not, not today
Peace might be another world away
And if that's the case ...

We'll give thanks to You with gratitude
For lessons learned in how to trust in You
That we are blessd beyond what we could ever dream
In abundance or in need
And if You never grant us peace ...

But, Jesus, would You please ...

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Lots of Pregnant Bellies in One Room

We started Childbirth classes last night. And yes, I know there are tons of people out there who say they are pointless or that you'll either laugh or cringe through the whole thing. But really, I was so excited for them and so relieved to be there. I went through the whole "panic we're actually having a baby" phase a while ago. Now I'm in the "PANIC I HAVE TO GIVE BIRTH TO THIS BABY" Phase...And unfortunately, I don't think it's a phase...

So I've been really, really looking forward to these classes. I'm not expecting to be told tons of new information that I haven't already read or heard. I am expecting to be calmed down a bunch, and for it to open discussion between Andrew and I about what we hope our baby's birth will be like.

So after our first class last night, I am feeling much more assured. Frankly, it was fun just to be around lots of pregnant women!! As the teacher said, look around, these will be the parents of the kids your kid will go to school with. It's fun to realize all our babies will be born so close together, and to not feel as big as a house when I realize how small I am compared to others. Or how big I am, and that we're all normal!! And practicing breathing, I know how to breathe, but it was a great reminder to chill out!! This baby will come no matter what.

Next week we take a tour of the maternity floor and delivery and all that good stuff. And I'm excited again. I really just need to think and process all of this without being overwhelmed. And these classes are helping me do just that.

Now for the funny stories...I know one girl in the class, met her husband, couldn't remember her name or why I know her...oh yeah, else do I know anyone in this town?! I need to pay more attention to my customers. It was a relief to know someone though, and fun to compare bellies! :-)

When I walked into work yesterday, my boss, and good friend, was laughing. I basically ignored this until she came into the back room where I was putting my apron on and said "now don't be offended" and I though uh oh, what did I do? "But you're starting to waddle." And I laughed so hard because she was right, I was waddling because my hips hurt and it was easier to walk that way...I just didn't realize it. That seemed to solitify how far along I actually am. I'm almost 30 weeks for crying out loud!! I keep feeling like I have to defend how far along I am, when really, 3rd trimester baby! We're having this baby soon!! I guess I was used to it since we announced SOOO early that we were pregnant. But it's been fun that way too.

So, 3 more classes to go, then it's Christmastime and then it's a month to kill until baby comes. January's looking pretty long, but I for one am ready for the Holidays this year!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

A Belated Veteran's Day Thought

I do realize that Veteran's Day was almost a week ago, but I've been pondering a thought all week and am ready to share it.

The morning of Veteran's Day our local AM talk radio station played a prayer prayed by President Franklin D. Roosevelt on the morning of June 6, 1944, D-Day. I was sooo moved by it because
1. the president prayed publicly
2. the war was one that had to be fought
3. the things he said, I highly doubt we'd ever hear our president saying them
4. He called the nation to a lifestyle of Prayer!!!
Rather than try to explain the significance, I'm posting the audio from YouTube and I'd like to copy a text of his prayer and let you see for yourself why it's so powerful. It's long, but bear with me please.

"My Fellow Americans:

Last night, when I spoke with you about the fall of Rome, I knew at that moment that troops of the United States and our Allies were crossing the Channel in another and greater operation. It has come to pass with success thus far.

And so, in this poignant hour, I ask you to join with me in prayer:

Almighty God: Our sons, pride of our nation, this day have set upon a mighty endeavor, a struggle to preserve our Republic, our religion, and our civilization, and to set free a suffering humanity.

Lead them straight and true; give strength to their arms, stoutness to their hearts, steadfastness in their faith.

They will need Thy blessings. Their road will be long and hard. For the enemy is strong. He may hurl back our forces. Success may not come with rushing speed, but we shall return again and again; and we know that by Thy grace, and by the righteousness of our cause, our sons will triumph.

They will be sore tried, by night and by day, without rest -- until the victory is won. The darkness will be rent by noise and flame. Men's souls will be shaken with the violences of war.

For these men are lately drawn from the ways of peace. They fight not for the lust of conquest. They fight to end conquest. They fight to liberate. They fight to let justice arise, and tolerance and goodwill among all Thy people. They yearn but for the end of battle, for their return to the haven of home.

Some will never return. Embrace these, Father, and receive them, Thy heroic servants, into Thy kingdom.

And for us at home -- fathers, mothers, children, wives, sisters, and brothers of brave men overseas, whose thoughts and prayers are ever with them -- help us, Almighty God, to rededicate ourselves in renewed faith in Thee in this hour of great sacrifice.

Many people have urged that I call the nation into a single day of special prayer. But because the road is long and the desire is great, I ask that our people devote themselves in a continuance of prayer. As we rise to each new day, and again when each day is spent, let words of prayer be on our lips, invoking Thy help to our efforts.

Give us strength, too -- strength in our daily tasks, to redouble the contributions we make in the physical and the material support of our armed forces.

And let our hearts be stout, to wait out the long travail, to bear sorrows that may come, to impart our courage unto our sons wheresoever they may be.

And, O Lord, give us faith. Give us faith in Thee; faith in our sons; faith in each other; faith in our united crusade. Let not the keeness of our spirit ever be dulled. Let not the impacts of temporary events, of temporal matters of but fleeting moment -- let not these deter us in our unconquerable purpose.

With Thy blessing, we shall prevail over the unholy forces of our enemy. Help us to conquer the apostles of greed and racial arrogances. Lead us to the saving of our country, and with our sister nations into a world unity that will spell a sure peace -- a peace invulnerable to the schemings of unworthy men. And a peace that will let all of men live in freedom, reaping the just rewards of their honest toil.

Thy will be done, Almighty God.

Franklin D. Roosevelt - June 6, 1944

I hope this impacts you as it did me. I won't make a lot of comments other than to say this. We need to PRAY FOR OUR PRESIDENT!!! I was moved to tears over the realization that he doesn't believe what FDR prayed. That the very word "republic" is a "bad concept" to him. (Please, no political discussion, this is my viewpoint, and if you don't share it, great!) FDR prayed for faith, for an "unconquerable purpose" he called the nation to daily prayer, to prevail against evil, and that God's Will would be done. Amen!! That's all I can say. Whether or not you think we should be in Iraq or Afghanistan, we can all pray those things!!! And pray that our President has such a love for our country and God that he is willing to do what FDR said HAD to be done.

And let us pray for our troops as FDR said, for strength, courage, and hope.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009


My husband is doing the dishes. I love my husband. That's about it!!

Yeah right, like I could say so little. The great thing about this situation is that he's rather slow at doing the dishes. So I usually do them. But tonight, I came home, he's doing the dishes. And I'm letting him, because he loves me and I love him. That's about it!

Lesson Learned

I married Andrew for many reasons, but one of the things that I liked about him was his awareness and caring of what goes on in the world. He's not obsessive mind you, but especially working in the news field he's very much aware of the news and how that will affect our lives. Call it personal responsibility I guess. Anyway, I loved and admired it. I still do, I just have to know when to walk away and let him be informed by himself.

Take Saturday night for example. The U.S. House of Representitives was discussing multiple amendments and then voting on the ever infamous "health care bill". Which I have issues with the name alone because EVERYONE in this county has access to health care. Not everyone has health insurance. Two VERY different things. But I digress.
We, even though we don't have cable, have an abundant 13 or so free channels through the VHF/UHF *I don't remember which* stations in town. Including C-SPAN, which growing up, I always thought was pointless, who would watch people talk and vote? My husband, that's who. So I spent my Saturday evening watching the House discuss the abortion amendment and then eventually, like way late at night, vote on the bill.
While all this "discussion" was going on, I made Andy change the channel at least once, because I was in tears.
Now, I will note this in the beginning, because it's not really my point of argument for the day, the abortion amendment was good, and it was bad. Good, because it's right and moral and Biblical. Bad, because it being added to the bill caused a lot of on the fence Democrats to vote in favor of the bill which they might not have without it because they are actually pro-life. So yes, if the bill is going to be passed, it needs the amendment, but without it, the bill might not be passed. It's kind of a win/lose situation. Just a thought. Anyway...

The main problem that brought me to tears wasn't the screwed up "health care" bill (I know, politics, don't even go there) or the fear of what kind of nation we're bringing our son into, it was the female representitives discussing the abortion amendment. I about died listening to all these women discussing how horrible it was of all these people to try to take away their "right" to have an abortion or their "right" to buy supplemental insurance that paid for abortion. "Women have the right to control their bodies, they have the 'right' to pay for an abortion if they want to". Putting aside the illogicalness of that "rights" argument, it was devastating to listen to. All I could think about were the lies these women had been told, the lies they are speaking, and the countless lives ruined as a result of them. First of all, we don't have a "right" to our own bodies, but that's another Biblical discussion.
Secondly, abortion is a lie!! I've always been strongly pro-life, but I admit, being pregnant has changed how passionate I am. When I was 8 weeks pregnant (so really, 6 weeks from conception) we saw our little son's heart beating on an ultrasound screen. We heard the incredibly fast beating over the speakers. I heard my son's heart beat, and I was in awe. He was so small, not even recognizable as a baby, except for the precious heart beating. You could see it beat and pumping and hear it's rhythm. And you want to tell women that at that point it's still all "tissue"?!!
I was in tears because if only we could have an ultrasound machine in every crisis-pregnancy center, or planned parenthood. If only women would have to have one before they had an abortion. Because really, it might not change some women's minds, but it would show the truth instead of speaking more lies to them. So many women know, and understand what an abortion is, and don't care, but so many women don't know or understand that their baby is alive!!

And so my heart broke, because all these female representitives were selling the lies and doing so it so passionately. And I cried, for all those babies who feel pain and hearts beat, and never get to be held or loved. And I cheered for the passage of the amendment to ban abortion funding, but I cried for the loss of lives and the destruction that this "health care" bill will cause. And I pray, for women who don't know what it is they carry, and how quickly they could love those babies, or of how many people who are willing to love them for them.

So lesson learned, don't watch emotional politics while pregnant. And yet, maybe it's good, because it gives me more to pray for and care about.

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

What a Life!!

I'm hoping my last post didn't sound too's rather ironic and funny now, after the fact. But that's hoping that this week is much less traumatic than last week.
My ankle is better, my burn is healing, and I had to have a root canal on the tooth that died...not fun!!
But, overall, I'm on the mend and doing better.

I did get to take the fun GD test yesterday at my Dr. Appt...gross...sugar high for hours is all I had. But saw our little boy, and little is now a relative term. He now weighs approximately 2 pounds 7 ounces and is kicking sooo much!! Andy couldn't make it to the appointment so I asked the Dr. to triple check that baby was still a boy, no fear, he is! Not sure why I thought it would have changed, I'm just so excited to have a son!! I couldn't even imagine a girl at this point, so I'm a little paranoid I guess. I look at my husband and get so excited to have a son like him!

Speaking of Andy, we spent the weekend in Sioux Falls with his parents and sister. We had a good time, got to see some friends and do some shopping. It's getting so hard to find anything in my closet that fits over this growing belly!! So I got a few new clothes to help! There's a trust issue for me, money. We really are trying to save as much as possible right now for when I'm on maternity leave and so the budget is really tight...and Christmas is upon us and the heat bill will be getting bigger, which is a stretch in normal years, let alone trying to save money. But like I said, it's a trust issue. God knows what our bills are going to be and me worrying isn't going to help any. I did buy some new and used clothes (I've now experienced Savers, love that store!) which leads to a funny story.

We were shopping in the mall in Sioux Falls, I had bought a shirt at Sears and then Andy and I were picking out new tennis shoes at Famous Footwear (buy one get one 50% off!) because his are falling apart, literally, and I need some shoes that didn't have laces, can't really breathe when I bend over at this point! Well, I left the Sears bag with Andy while he paid for the shoes and I went to pick out some clothes at Motherhood Maternity (love that store too!). Long story short, Somewhere in between Andy no longer had the Sears bag, I freaked because we didn't have the money to start with, let alone lose a bag with a shirt in it, we raced around the mall, never found it, drove to the restaurant where we're meeting his parents, I cried, I got upset, he felt soooo bad, we resolved with each other, but I was still heartsick that God would allow this when we don't have ANY extra spending money anyway. So at dinner Andy's parents asked if I felt okay, and I said to ask Andy, and we both laughed, because by now our drama was kind of funny, mostly because I cried in the store :-) So Andy told them what had happened and his dad (who was in the shoe store with Andy) says "Oh, you mean that bag that I said I'd carry for you?!" I start laughing in giddy relief, hit Andy on the arm, and he goes "oh yeah, he said he'd carry that bag since I had the shoes." WoW! I love my husband, but good grief! Great timing to remember these things!!
But I learned a big lesson, chill out for one! And two, I really do doubt God at times and not trust that He's taking care of us and Sovereign. Even if we had lost that bag, God is still in control and that was His perfect plan.
I'm a slow learner...

So anyway, it was a fun weekend and Dexter had SO MUCH FUN playing with all the dogs at our friends house. I had a good time visiting with Jessica and Lando, who have one year old Diem and are expecting again in March. I realized how fun it is to talk to another pregnant woman. I need more of that sometimes...

And like I said, our son is moving like crazy! Sunday morning Andy felt him kick his hand specifically, and the look on his face made me fall in love with him all over again...

I did get the H1N1 vaccine yesterday...much prayer and discussion occured, and we felt I should. So I feel somewhat relieved and pray God still protects our family and our son.
I've been struggling lately with how expectant mothers talk about loving their unborn child. I do love him, but it wasn't this feeling of love I have when I look at Andy, or anyone else for that matter. Well, now that I feel him responding when I push on my belly, and kicking so strongly, and I can picture holding him in 3 months, I do understand better. I love him soooo much!! He's my son, and while I don't understand all that that means, he's my precious gift from God, a mixture of my beloved husband and myself, and a sign of all God's given us, and I love him!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

God gives us Lemonade

There's a mostly Christian artist named Chris Rice who sings a song "Lemonade" and the chorus goes something like this "Life gave me lemonade and I can't imagine why, born on a sunny day before the clear blue sky, live life without pretending, I'm a sucker for happy endings, thanks for the lemonade..." It's actually a pretty cute love song, but I've always struggled with the "life gave me lemonade" instead of giving God credit for making lemonade out of lemons, I think that's the concept of the lemonade anyway. That's why I say "mostly" Christian artist, because he does a lot of crossover stuff, which I get, you leave the word God out of it and you get more people to listen. Except so many secular country songs talk about God...anyway, I digress.

My whole point being that I feel like I need to make that my heart for today, that there are "lemon moments" in the world, but God has a plan and can use them if I let Him. If for nothing else than to teach me something and bring Him glory, which is a lot.

My "lemons" for today? I managed to roll/sprain my ankle yesterday while walking the dog...thought I was fine until I was at work, and then I hit a point where I could barely walk. Now I've been icing it and keeping it up for the last 14 hours or so, which isn't easy to do while typing...and being frustrated at my clumsiness...
I couldn't make Andy's lunch, I can't play with the dog, I can't walk the dog who's looking at me with huge sad eyes, and I'm just hoping I can make it through six hours of work standing on it. Thank the Lord for ACE bandages! (I'm also leaving out the lemons of having to buy a new curling iron 'cause mine went on the fritz and burning my hip on a cookie sheet...don't ask!)

So I want to feel incredibly sorry for myself, and indeed I do, but somewhere in this I'm sure there's a "Be Still and Know that I Am God" moment...but all I want to do is cry...
Is this the point in pregnancy where I get all emotional? Because I'm feeling it!

I dreamt about our son last night, at age 5 for some odd reason, and he wouldn't tell me "love you mommy"...kind of freaked me out in reality. I think it's because I've had the conference we went to this weekend on my mind. It was "Love and Respect" and I was so moved and convicted about respecting Andy so much better than I do, and acting like it! The speaker's biggest example that stuck out to me was, would you want your son's wife speaking to your baby boy the way you do to your husband? I didn't think about it too much the first time he said it, but then it hit me, we're having a boy, we're having a son! And if I don't teach him how he should be treated by women, with respect and Godliness, he'll 1. resent me, and 2. not have a great marriage... So there's more motivation for building Andy up...not that I needed it, God's good motivation, but this is a biggy too...

So, I'm off to cry a little, and then hope that I can bring some joy into this day for others and enjoy some lemonade!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Yeah Right

So last week we purchased a "training collar" aka shock collar for our wonderful mischievious little dog. It's still in the mail and last night I was having second thoughts about the need for it, he hadn't been too naughty the last few days. Yeah right, maybe because we'd both been home and taking him on hour long hikes every day. As I write this I just rescued my pajamas from his jaws and he's perched on the chair trying to jump up to the table to get the slippers I set there for "safe keeping"...Yeah, he's a good dog alright, who needs some serious obedience training. Maybe it will come today.

In other news, it's kind of hitting me, we're having a baby! Duh, I know, but with every renewed kick in my belly, I'm reminded of God's goodness. It had kind of become normal to be expecting a baby, I had kind of lost the wonder of it, the miracle in it all. More so than the normal miracle of birth. We prayed so long and hard for this baby, we weren't sure God was going to answer that prayer with a yes, and when He did, it was amazing!! I never want to lose the wonder of that. For months I cried and prayed and was stretched beyond any faith I myself had, to come to a point of saying "You are God, I am not" Which is exactly where God wanted me I'd say for sure. I'm not saying it works this way for everyone, but when I had come to the end of myself, for several months mind you, and really said, "okay Lord, whatever you have for us, If you can be best glorified in it being Andy and I forever, then great, not just okay, but praise the Lord! If you are best glorified by us searching your face for years for a child, and then grant that wish, Praise the Lord! If you never grant us a child, Praise the Lord!"
That was when God could use me, and when He gave us a child. It was not immediate, but it did happen.
It's so easy to type those words now that I have a life growing inside of me, but I truly pray that even if I never get to keep this little boy, that I will say that with all my heart, Praise the Lord!
I have been given the privilege for several months of carrying this life and seeking God for the strength to do so every day. I know now that we can have children, and that we have a lot to learn along the way. But I never want to lose the wonder of realizing that God had said "Yes!" And the miracle that is our little boy who is growing every day regardless of what I'm doing, that is God, and His unfathomable love for His children. We don't deserve to have a baby, we don't deserve any goodness from God's hands, we only deserve His wrath, so I treasure this blessing even more. I pray that every kick will remind me of God's love for me, a sinner, but a redeemed child of His, I don't deserve any of it.

I think of being a mother like I now do of being a wife. Beforehand, I had no idea what I was getting into, but I knew this, I was supposed to marry Andrew, He was the one God had for me. He taught me more about the Love of God and the glory of God, and I knew that I could bring God more glory by being married, specifically to Andrew. And I pray that I have. I have learned and grown and been stretched in more ways than I could possibly imagine, and in ways I never would have as a single person. And isn't that the point of marriage? Not for my own benefit or pleasure, but to bring God glory?! Although, to quote John Piper " God is most glorified in us, when we are most satisfied in Him." And I find my satisfaction in serving my God by serving my husband. And it brings God glory.
So I pray that it's the same for motherhood. I'm not a total fool, I know there will be hard days, when I'm so exhausted I can only cry and reach out to the one who made me and this baby, but I know too that I will learn reliance on God in a way I never could have imagined, and I pray I bring Him glory in that.

This video I saw about a month before I got pregnant, and it was the cry of my heart, but it also echoed the hope I had that God was faithful whether than meant having a baby, or not.
I think so many people who have never struggled to conceive don't understand or grasp that utter pain it can bring, or the questions that have no answers. This song portrays that so well.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Maybe it's time to get ready?

We are now the proud owners of a baby's crib. We picked it up Monday through the help of a state/county grant/aid. Since we were looking at used semi-okay cribs before, I'm so thankful to be able to have a brand new crib! No safety hazards here! We are so blessed to have people who tell us about these things and to be able to use these programs. It's a blow to my pride, but that's okay, my pride probably needs a few more blows. The other good news is that with my reduced work hours due to issues with the baby, we now qualify for WIC, so more help with groceries and the 4 gallons of milk we think we need to ingest every week. I was allergic to milk as a kid and people tell me to be careful how much I drink so as to not inflict the same thing on the baby, but seriously, I can't get enough of the stuff!! Maybe I need more calcium, but I am taking a calcium suppliment in addition to all my other vitamins and the milk. Ahh well...

So with the arrival of the crib I've started thinking about the baby's room. People keep telling me or asking me aobut what stuff we have for the baby and what we need, etc... And really, I have no clue!! We own a swing, got a great used but looks new one at a garage sale this summer. Now we have a crib. We have an assortment of clothes from various garage sale's, mother-in-law, and a dear friend who had a son. I'm sure I need some more eventually, but right now, I do have some clothes. I guess some socks for his feet would be good, but that's what footsie clothes are for right? I guess what I'm saying is that because we found out soooo early that we were pregnant I was really careful to not get overexcited and get super prepared. Now with each punch/kick I'm reminded that this baby is happening and we will need everything people keep asking me about. The thing is, I've never had a baby, so how do I really know and understand what we'll need? Strangely enough my chiropractor has become my salvation. She just had a baby last December and is offering us everything to use from her bassinet to bouncy chair to a book about vaccinations (they freak me out!) to making me a list of "essential" baby items that we'll need. Her sister did that for her and she said it was such a great tool to relax and just get what you would actually use. So that gives me some peace of mind.

And then there's the whole issue of decorating the baby's room and picking out sheet colors and blankets, etc...what theme, what color, I don't know! And really, why rush into it? I know, the baby will be here before I know it, but how about getting a little closer to that actual event before I freak out. I think my issue is mostly that I like to overprepare and get my hopes up about things too soon. If we even talk about taking a trip I'm on the internet looking for a motel and researching everything to do in the area. I'm somewhat obsessive compulsive about some things, so I've tried very hard in the last few years to take a deep breath and slow down and just enjoy the process. Now I'm worried that I've gone to the other extreme and become unprepared.

I really do think that after we get through October possibly November that I'll be more "into" getting ready for this baby. I think I just don't want to end up bored and twiddling my thumbs through all of January. Why not use that month of "nesting" to pass the time more quickly? Just a thought I guess. Andy's so laid back about everything that he's definitely not pressuring me. I think I would feel better if I simply understood everything people ask me or that I had a clue about what we are doing with this baby. So if you ask me questions in the future, just remember I've never had a baby, don't know what I'm doing, and basically, I'm okay with that.

Thursday, October 08, 2009

Time for Change

So after lamenting how much I like Fall, let me say this, I like nice falls, this really cold wet one isn't exactly what I meant. Okay, just had to get that off my chest.

In other news, it was time for a change. It seems that after my determination to not get down this Fall, it happened anyway. I think Andy working long hours for two weeks and spending a lot of time alone at home with the dog kind of got to me after a while.

In good news, the dog is behaving slightly better. He still gets aggressive when he wants to play, but now he just gets a "time-out" in the kennel for a few minutes and then he usually calms down. He's also gotten more cuddly and will now cuddle and sleep on your lap rather than in the middle of the floor or the back of the couch. So that certainly makes him more loveable now. Although his renewed desire to sleep on the bed and preferrably right between us is getting slightly annoying and making nighttime interesting.

Andy's now back to his normal schedule so hopefully that will help a little bit too. Although it seems we've gotten busy again or just not using our time greatly so I need to work on quality time with him. I've been so lethargic lately that that is certainly not helping either.
On that note, I'm feeling the need to make some good girlfriends who have time, like to say yes to things, and actually want to spend time with me. That was my lament this week when Andy was working so much. It kind of all piled on at once. I'm so guilty sometimes of just fearing being rejected so therefore not asking to spend time with someone and therefore missing some great friendships and opportunities. Gotta work on that one too.

So all this leads up to the need for a drastic change. So what do I do you ask? Chop off my hair. Nope, not kidding. And I love it. My hair is so thick and when it gets too long it gets so heavy and just gross. Not really, but I think it's gross. So every once in a while, it's time to let it go. And I'm excited, because this is easy and quick and the baby will have less to pull on. Assuming I keep this style until after he's born. So, that's my monumental change for this Fall, Andy likes it, and I'm certainly less frustrated with my hair. Here's the latest baby belly update and the new do.

One other note of sorrow for me. I've been feeling the baby move/kick/hit more and more. Which is great. The sad bit is that Andy doesn't have a ton of patience and or skill and hasn't felt the baby move yet. Which probably wouldn't bother me except for the several friends I have who's husbands felt their babies move before 20 weeks, even 18 or so. Nevermind that I'm almost 24 weeks pregnant and nothing for dad yet. It's just frustrating because I want him to be excited and share in this part. And maybe it would make it more real too. I'm not sure. Anyway, I like my hair.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Fall (ing to pieces)

I love Fall, it really probably is one of my favorite seasons. Only because I love Winter as well, and Fall makes me excited to leave the gross heat of summer and enjoy the wonderful snow and cold of Winter. I know, all you summer/south/heat lovers now know for sure I'm nuts and probably dislike me greatly. Sorry, Midwest/Northern born and raised and love the cold. Okay, I don't love -30 below with -50 windchills, but I do love Snow and Sleds and Skis and Mittens and Winter and Christmas. So Fall is just an encouragement that those things are in fact coming. Plus I love hooded sweatshirts and warm fuzzy pajama pants. And when it hits 50 or so, out comes that sweatshirt. The ones that now still fit that is. I'm finding I'm needed slightly longer things now to cover my ever-expanding baby belly. That's another reason to be excited for Winter, we just have to speed through Thanksgiving and Christmas as usual, spend January preparing and counting the days, and boom, baby in our lives. That's my hope anyway, that it will go quickly like that and I won't have to count every day going "really baby, let's go!". Optimistic I know.
Anyway, that detail aside, I love Fall, I'm excited to see the leaves change and to wear my hooded sweatshirts. I love the smell of Fall in the air. I know, it's dead leaves and smoke, but it still smells good! I love the anticipation, the sheer joy of it all.
In high-school/college the Fall was usually my hardest time emotionally. For whatever reason, less light, less nutrients,whatever, it was usually the time I would fall emotionally and spiritually to pieces.
But like the other many blessings my husband has bestowed upon me, he evens me out. He really does tend to keep me more balanced (only by God's grace I know and am thankful for). Mostly because he's pretty even-keeled and I'm well, not. So I'll get all worked up about something and he calms me down and talks me down. And really, after 3+ years of this, I really don't get as high-strung to start with. Now, let me stop and say that's God's grace and mercy at work in my life too. I've had to grow up a lot, physically, emotionally, and spiritually, since being married, and God has used that to grow me in His image. At least, that's my prayer. And I do see growth in Him in my life.
So this Fall, I'm anticipating Winter, loving the beauty around me, being so thankful for my steady husband, and am in awe of a God and Creator who loves me enough to keep me close to Him and grow me up to be holy and white as the snow to come.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Really?! What does this say about my parenting?!

News Flash:
We have a dog to give away, or in seriously need of some training. He's been a good puppy for the most part, a little high strung and hyper, but really, he's part terrier, what did we expect?
He loves to steal stuff and have you chase him, but he's been pretty obedient over all. Until this last week. We had him neutered a little over a week ago and ever since then, it's like he's possessed. And I don't know what to do with him. He's always loved to chew and if you let him, chew on you, but if you told him to stop or "NO" he would. Now, he just gets sassy and crabby and barks at you and really bites hard if you ignore him. This HAS to stop.
1. We have a renter upstairs who probably doesn't appreciate him barking all the time.
2. With the baby coming he can't A. Bite B. Steal Stuff C. Bark a lot D. All of the above. The correct answer is D.
3. He needs to obey!!!
We were at the grocery store on Sunday and he was in the car and when Andy went to get out of the car he jumped out. He's never done this before first of all, and secondly, he wouldn't come when we called!!
I think a lot of it is an attention thing, he wants to be chased, he wants to play, he wants attention period, even if it's bad attention. But this has to stop! I thought the neutering thing was supposed to calm a dog down, not have the opposite effect. Grrrr....I'm sooo frustrated!!!

Monday, September 21, 2009


I'm creating my own word- PackRatitis- meaning having the disease of being a pack rat. Which I have tendencies to be, and my husband definitely is. Which can or cannot be a problem depending on how you look at it. But when trying to make room in a smaller house for a baby, it can be a problem. I've done a fairly good job of cleaning my stuff out of our "office" turned baby's room lately. So today, our day off, I'm being a taskmaster and begging Andrew to clean out his desk so we can move it out. Since it's raining and dreary out he's being kind enough to humor me. I've been feeling a bit overwhelmed by the amount of stuff we've accumulated since we got married especially and moved into a bigger than 3 room apartment. Somehow I think the stuff multiplies to fill the space you have. Anyway, I feel like we have tons of stuff, why do we keep it, what's it for, who really cares how much stuff we have? etc... And really, why can't we just toss stuff? Like my notes from college, do I really need 90 pages of notes about intercultural communication? You never know, maybe... gross, I disgust myself.

But then, I was cleaning off the top of the filing cabinet, trying to figure out where we are going to move the filing cabinet to, and wondering why it was endearing to me at one point that my husband loves music so much he seriously owns 300 cd's, and why do I have to be the one to move them to a new spot? When I found this:

Random I know. But it made me smile and kiss my husband. This seemingly pointless piece of a tree trunk that measures about 6 inches in length is a piece of our first Christmas tree as a married couple. Which has a wonderful story to it. First of all, had to have a real tree. No discussion. Secondly, lived in a teeny-tiny barely room for us apartment. Thirdly, we went so late in the day that it got dark, I got cold, I'm sure I cried at some point, but we got a huge honking tree out of the woods, paid the man, and made it home. Only to drag this, I swear 7-8 foot tree upstairs to our apartment and have to cut probably 1+ feet off of it. We made it though, and the tree took up about half of our 12 foot living room that Christmas. Seriously, there was room to walk by it, sit on the couch, and watch TV about 2 feet away. But it was real, it was big, and it was beautiful. And it made great memories for our first Christmas together.
And this little piece was part of what Andy had to saw off the bottom after we got it up into the apartment, and he decided to keep it. I couldn't figure out why, I mean seriously, sticky piece of wood sitting on the bookshelf in our apartment. I cringed and teased him every time I dusted around it. But he was stubborn and would laugh back at me and say something to the effect of "just leave it be". So I did, and when we moved to this house, it got put on the filing cabinet with the rest of his odd collection of stuff to keep.

Until today, when I decided to clean it off and move most of it to the top of the dresser which until now collected clothes and stuff the dog was trying to eat. And I found this piece of tree, no longer so sticky, and I didn't cringe, I was instead so thankful that my husband is thoughtful enough to care about the little things, to enjoy the little moments of our life together, and to keep a part of our first Christmas Tree. And even though we're probably still packrats, I have a lot of memories from the past 3 1/2 years that I'm reminded of in a lot of the "stuff" that we keep around. And honestly, I wouldn't trade them for anything, even more space.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Just a case of loneliness?

So Andrew (my beloved husband), has been working evenings this week filling in for someone who's on vacation. I enjoy having him home for a while in the morning, but that fact that he doesn't get home until pretty late at night is pretty hard on me. It shouldn't matter whether I'm alone in the morning or the evening, but it does for some reason. I can be so productive in the morning after he goes to work and before I go to work, but somehow at night I just sit and wait for him to go home and feel sad and try not to cry.

That sounds so desperate and needy I'll even admit how bad that sounds. But it's true. Before I was married, I could spend a whole evening alone and not feel an ounce of sadness. I definitely have some introverted tendancies to where I need some alone time, but not like this.
I know lots of couples who can work opposite shifts from each other or just go to bed before the other one, but I have serious issues doing this. I don't go to sleep very well and I love the time with my husband. I treasure deeply going to sleep with him and waking up with him. I think some of it is our desire when we were engaged of just being in the same town together, and we couldn't wait to be married, but yet, we treasured that for marriage, so now, it's soooo precious.

Anyway, I simply treasure even more the time I get with my husband and I'll be thankful when this is done, except he's doing it again in 2 weeks, and with his job it's always a possibility that these will be his regular hours. So I have some growing to do, and some dependance on Christ instead of my husband, except I love being dependent on him. I mean, not that I don't want to be dependent on Christ, just that I don't ever want to grow independent of my husband. I'm not sure how this will all play out when I'm a new mom and up late at night and he needs to sleep, etc... Okay, I have GOT to work through this!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Do we ever really do anything as good as Mom?

I scrubbed my kitchen floor yesterday, and I mean really scrubbed, like hands and knees and everything. Why I did this when my hips and legs are already killing me, I'm not sure, but I did. My one confession being that I don't clean under the fridge or stove in any place that we rent. You don't even want to know the gunk and grossness that lies below there from previous people. My justification being that it's not my crud so why should I clean up other disgusting people's disgustingness?! Of course now that I know how gross it is it will bug me for days that I skipped that part. I used to clean cabins/houses for a pretty good hourly wage, and yes, I cleaned under the fridge. So maybe if I got payed $13 for an hour to clean under my "rental fridge/stove" I would do it. Since I'm not, I'm going to have to feel a lot more guilty first.

I've decided I can no longer watch the news after the 6pm news. I have nightmares if I do. Like of little boys being stepped on by horses and houses on fire and it's just not good. I'm blaming it on my mothering instincts that are apparently now in full force. Which I decided yesterday when the dog got neutered and I almost cried because he was so scared being left at the vet's and I felt guilty for inflicting pain on him. Yes, it's for his and our good, but who cares?! He's my baby and we were letting him feel pain. Yep, mothering instincts are here.

Speaking of the dog, he loves toasted bread products. If you make toast, a bagel/english muffin, whatever, as soon as he hears the toaster pop up, he's at your feet tail wagging and making your life miserable. Don't sit down while eating said products, he'll either be on your lap or the back of the couch trying to steal bites on the way to your mouth. If you stand up and eat, he'll jump up on you for a while until you cave in and feed him some. Best to throw it far away to distract him for 5 seconds or so. It's his favorite thing, or so I thought until yesterday when we made eggs and he REALLY freaked out. Apparently toast comes in second to eggs, there's just no way to describe him when he wants these, he's almost human. Kind of like a demanding child...hmm...

And speaking of mothering, I made cream puffs tonight. Just for the sake that I had heavy whipping cream and decided to try. My mom makes incredible and amazing cream puffs. Mine were okay, too much work for 11 puffs, but they are good. Not like Mom's. Her's would be worth the work, mine are debateable. I wish I could cook/bake like my Mom. When she makes bread products, she doesn't use a recipe. Growing up it was, "well, put this much in and I'll tell you if it looks right." Great tasting, not so helpful for learning to cook since I have no concept of amounts or depth. Driver's Ed for example: "Turn your blinker on halfway down the block." That's great if I know what and where halfway down the block is, I still can't tell.

Anyway, I love my Mom, and I really wish I could be like her in more ways than cream puffs. I wish I could do most of my life as well as my Mom has done hers. My one consolation is that I loved my grandmas to death. My Grandma Otto (who has passed away) still makes me cry when I think of her and I can't compare her impact on my heart and life to anyone else. The consolation being that my kids will have just such and amazing Grandma Otto as well.

Thursday, September 03, 2009

Not quite what I expected...

Today is my day off in the "middle of the week". My doctor restricted me to working 4 days a week after all the drama with the baby a while ago, and really, it's much appreciated! I really do need a day to rest up, it does me and the baby good. That's what I planned today, some coffee with an amazing friend, some lunch, some errand running, a walk with the dog, a nap, and maybe some cleaning out of the office/baby's room. Except since I'm pregnant I've seemed to lost my mind and totally forgot that I was supposed to go to a surprise birthday lunch. Which thankfully, I was reminded about at coffee so I still got to go. Except then my whole schedule was thrown off 2 hours and all I've got done on my list is the coffee, lunch out, and errand running. And it's almost supper time! grrr.... Maybe I will just go take that nap and worry about it all later. Because really, that's the point of today, to rest up!

Monday, August 31, 2009

Moping Monday

Normally I love Mondays, weird I know, but usually they are the one full day off I have "alone" with my husband. Not today, he's filling in for someone at work tonight so I'm alone and realizing how spoiled I am to be able to have a complete day with him normally. Plus I'm tired and feeling emotional so I really just miss him and want to cry about it. Instead I'll get ready for bed and be thankful I get him to myself tomorrow evening. Well myself and the whole Metrodome. Yep, we're finally making it to another Twins game. Gotta say farewell to the Dome as the commercials say. Plus it's Caribou Coffee night at the Dome tomorrow so we got cheap tickets and will hopefully have a great time. The dog (Dexter) is going to the baby-sitters for the night, where he's sure to be spoiled a plenty. It'll be a late night with the drive back, but will be fun to have my hubby to myself in the car for the 4-hour round trip. Cancel that, I'll probably sleep the whole time... :-)

Saturday, August 29, 2009

I'm Joining the Ranks

I think I've officially joined the ranks of parenthood. Not that being pregnant didn't get me there, it's just now I'm starting to accumulate all sorts of baby paraphenalia and wondering "how much stuff can we possibly need, and where do we put it all?". I don't think there's a good answer for that, because I don't even know where to put all our junk as it is, let alone the baby's.
What brings this on is we purchased our first "big" baby item today. We got a great baby swing at a garage sale for only $20! It's very clean, no scratches on the metal, has two speeds, and even has the infant headrest thing that comes off later. The lady had it marked at $35 but she said she would take less as it was getting later in the day and I was going to offer her $25 but decided to ask what she'd take for it, thinking if she said $30 I'd say $25 then. Instead, she said $20 and I said "sold!" 'cause that's how excited I was. I should post a picture of it but right now it's sitting in the corner of the "baby's room" that is also holding our guns. Yes, real live ammo shooting guns. And yes, they will be moved before the baby is born, so relax.
Anyway, I'm super excited to be finding some of the bigger baby items we'll need, but wary over the way they'll take over. Not that the baby isn't going to take over our lives for a while either...yeah so never mind.
I also think the baby is going to apparently take over my blog, as that's what's constantly on my mind these days, but I will try to think a little deeper than that for another post some other time.

Friday, August 28, 2009


An additional thought from the last post, I am so, So, SO thankful that this baby is due in the middle of winter and that I live in a cold state.
Several reasons: 1. I hate sleeveless shirts, and therefore am so thankful I don't have to be 8 months pregnant in the middle of the summer. 2. I would much rather have to bundle up than wear more summer clothes. 3. Sweatshirts really do accentuate and make a pregnant belly even cuter. 4. Winter clothes, so much more forgiving than summer lack of clothes.
That's all, purely selfish, fleshly, and shallow reasons, but I like it nonetheless. And it's certainly not hurting my feelings any that it's going to barely break 60 degrees tomorrow so I can already break out the sweatshirts that make me feel cute and pregnant. So for all you summer lovers, sorry, this is Minnesota, I was born and raised here, and yes, some of us actually love the cold. Not the 40 below nonsense, but 0-70 degrees doesn't hurt my feelings any.

Bakin' up a Baby

So my first title for this post was Cookin' up Baby, which sounds like I'm actually cooking a baby, while this one isn't much better, it's supposed to be a play on the words having "one in the oven". Anyway, I digress. People kept telling me from the moment I announced I was pregnant (which was like 2 seconds after I found out) that I had to take weekly/monthly belly pictures to show how the baby and I were growing. The problem with this being, and I never actually understood it until I was pregnant, because I always just thought pregnant women were so cute, but for the first 3 months, you really do just feel fat. It's not a hatred to the baby, it's not a bad self-image, you just lose all control over your stomache muscles, you don't feel the baby moving, the "hard baby stomache" hasn't taken over yet, you don't usually look pregnant (unless you're a size 0-2 to start with, in which case, don't even talk to me) so really, you just feel and possibly look fat. All this to say is that I either thought I just looked fat or I felt fat. I didn't want people looking at pictures of my "baby-belly" and go, really, she just looks like she's gained weight. Now that I feel the baby moving, can do nothing about my projecting belly, and it's getting harder to the touch, I'm all about my baby-belly picture. So the other night my husband finally took this one of me at about 17 1/2 weeks pregnant.

Afterwards, and I do mean AFTERWARDS, because I sure didn't make it a fun experience for him, I was feeling sort of chagrined. First of all, I realized how judgemental I must be of peoples pregnancy pictures, because I'm sure self-conscious of my own. Secondly, who the heck cares? Seriously, who cares what I look like?! We're so excited to have this baby, after a lot of prayer and tears and I rejoice daily over God's incredibly undeserved blessing of being pregnant, so why shouldn't I rejoice in my "fat/baby-belly"? And why let what anyone else may think rob me of the joy of showing of the baby in the oven? Thirdly, now that I realize this, I'm a little sad that I didn't take pictures before now. Because in reality, I'm only 2 weeks from being halfway through this pregnancy. I missed that opportunity because of my denying God's blessing.
So that's my chastisement to myself, and ever since then, I'm sincerely hoping some brave stranger out there asks me when I'm due. Because it's a dangerous question, but I'm open to it now. And I'll keep "Bakin' up our baby" and thankful that there's a reason I'm so tired, forgetful, and "chubby". :-)

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Snips and Snails and Puppy Dog Tails...

There's a poem that begins like this... "Snip and Snails and Puppy Dog Tails, that's what little boys are made of." I never understood that totally, especially the Snip part, but little boys are definitely on my mind lately. We were told about 4 weeks ago by our doctor that she was 80% sure our baby was a boy. Last week, she made it 100%, and looking at the ultrasound, there's no denying it.
Whenever we talked about having a baby or even right after we got pregnant, I always just pictured a little girl. But somewhere in my heart and head I knew that would be dissappointing to my husband, and somewhere in my gut, I knew we'd have a boy. Call it Mother's intuition, I don't know, but I knew. So I wasn't really surprised when she said it was a boy. A little in shock over how I'm going to raise him, but not surprised. I look at my nephew, who's a nonstop bundle of energy and creativity and mischief, and wonder how we're going to do it. It sure seems that our boy is as active as my nephew, so it'll be interesting that's for sure.
Don't get me wrong, I love little boys, I'm just scared to death to raise one. Everytime Mary Lisa brings her son into Caribou, I about die, I love him, he's so precious! I love my nephew to death, I love the little boys in our church, I just never knew I'd have to do what they do. I figured I'd get practice on a girl first. Boys are easier in the sense of in the future probably less drama and emotions, but the energy bit, boy I'll be busy. Pun intended of course.
The thought that makes my heart swell whenever I think it is how amazing my husband is going to be. He is an amazing husband and is going to be an even more amazing father. He will be every little boys dream of a daddy. He's smart, handy, busy, active, and fun! What more could a boy want?! He loves to go, go, go. Bike, Fish, Walk, Boat, Canoe, etc... he does it. And he'll have our boy right by his side, or behind him in a trailer on the bike trail. And he knows so much! He's super smart and will have our son swinging a hammer before he can walk I'm sure. :-)
Overall, I'm so excited to have a little man to give my big man, and really, after buying lots of blue and green at a rummage sale last week, I can't wait to hold my little man in my arms...only 5 months to go!!

A little discipline please!

So being disciplined isn't exactly my best quality. I was finally getting the hang of being disciplined about going to the gym almost every day when I got pregnant, which means being exhausted beyond explanation, which means working out is a joke. When we first got married I was pretty good about being disciplined in having a menu and a plan for supper every night. Now at 5:30pm I find myself going..."uh oh...what are we eating tonight?" I also used to make the bed every day, and put away the laundry as soon as it was clean, and wash dishes every night, etc., etc., etc...
Then it's this blog, when I started it, I must have either had a lot to say or lots of time to say it, because I was pretty good about blogging regularly. Now, not so much. I'm not sure if it's because I have less time, less to say, or simply less big changes in our lives. Well, with the coming baby boy in our lives, I feel the need to not forget how I'm feeling and what I'm thinking these days. So I'm trying again. Maybe not every day, but hopefully at least once a week.
Maybe start out with just a little bit of discipline. With some of the complications that have ensued with this pregnancy, I'm no longer working on Thursdays for the most part, so maybe that will be my day to blog. Whatever happens, I feel purposed to be more disciplined. I am making the bed more regularly now, and hopefully doing dishes more often, so maybe the other stuff will follow. The Bible seems to have a lot to say about being orderly and disciplined in different areas of our lives. Somehow, I've never seemed to think it was important enough I guess. My prayer is now I will.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

The Irony

So why is it that we, okay I'll say I, always seem to say that I just need to let go and trust God to take care of it, and then I never do? There are so many things (okay everything) to look back on in life and see how God had perfect timing and His plan was much better than what I thought I wanted. And yet, when it comes to a new situation to trust God with, I fail to do so completely. And frankly, if we don't trust God completely, are we really trusting Him? There is no part-way with God...He doesn't do a "okay, I'll just meet you in the middle, you can trust me with your job but not your spouse, or you can trust me with your time but not your money." It doesn't work that way, Proverbs 3:5 says "Trust in the Lord with ALL thine heart." (emphasis added) not some, not part, but ALL. It seems so often too that words such as "Well, God's in control right?" or "God will take care of it." "I just have to trust right?" seem to roll off my tongue and lips but never quite sink into my heart or actions. I often wonder why I'm surprised when God shakes up my world just to get me to loosen my grip on "my" life... Isn't that my constant prayer, that I'll learn to trust Him more? And if I won't relinquish control, then He has to shake me up. And yet, God never demands I trust Him. He certainly wants me to, and yes, does command it in Scripture. But as for everyday life, He doesn't force me to trust Him. I'm not a little robot who has no choice but to trust the big God. No, I have a choice everyday, with every emotion and action, to trust in the one who's bigger than it all. We really have no idea how Big God Is. The universe alone is an incomprehensible picture of God's greatness, and yet, I have the gall to say, "Oh no God, see I know how I want this to go, so I'm going to make it happen my way." or, "Really God? What are you doing?! If you would just let this happen right now, I would be so happy!". How foolish I and we as humans really are. To think that our timetable and agenda is better or more important than the God of the UNIVERSE. HELLO! What don't we get?! And yet, there's that great big God of the universe that has the world in motion and yet He wants to make my life a better glorification of Himself. He's orbiting planets and yet He still cares about the little details of my life and giving me the strength to bear all things for His honor and glory. And all those MAJOR problems I'm losing sleep and tears over, He's got it covered! He sees the beginning, end and in betweens even if I never know why...and really, He doesn't need to show me! It's so easy to look back and see how God worked and give Him the glory when I see the whole picture, but what about those things I never know how they turned out and why they did they way they did? He's still in control!
I'm grasping to try and make the point I've had mulling in my brain for the past week or so. Basically what I'm trying to say is that in our human finitness we try to put God in our little boxes and explain why He does stuff..."Oh, someday you'll see why God waited on this. " Or, "Oh, that's why God didnt' let that happen." or, "Oh, now I see what God was doing." When in reality, Who CARES?! God doesn't answer to me! I'm soooo self-centered that I think that God's at least someday got to explain it all to me. What if I get to heaven and try to ask God about something (Which really, will I care about why my taxes were so high when I'm praising the King of Kings...I don't think so!) will He really deem it important to explain to me...HE'S GOD! He gets to do whatever brings Him glory without EVER sharing why. And really, from Scripture, I can have complete assurance that God will only do that which glorifies Himself and better displays Himself to the world. So if He gets glory from my losing $20 out of my pocket, go for it! I'm so dillusional to think that God's got to assure me of His plan. HE DOESN'T REPORT TO ME!
Basically, here's me, little peon of existance, here's God, MAKER OF THE UNIVERSE!

And yet, here's me, little peon of existence, and here's God, who loves me so much that He sent His Son to die on a cross so I could be with Him and bring Him more glory through my salvation and eternal life...Do I get how they can both be true? Not really...I sure try to puff up myself to much more importance than I have, and I sure need to humble myself in sight of the cross...But again, God's got it under control. I wonder how much more glory I could be giving God if I could get this through to my emotions and actions... I guess my prayer lately is that I would realize how little imput I get into what God's doing, and yet be grateful that He allows me to see how He's working in my life and others.

"Come now you who say, 'Today or tomorrow we will go into such and such a town and spend a year there and trade and make a profit' yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes. Instead you ought to say, 'If the Lord wills, we will live and do this or that.' As it is, you boast in your arrogance All such boasting is evil. So whoever knows the right thing to do and fails to do it, for him it is sin."
James 4:13-17

"I would have lost heart, unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living. Wait on the LORD; Be of good courage, And He shall strengthen your heart; Wait, I say, on the Lord!" Psalm 27:13-14

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Sitting Still

It seems like since my marriage to Andrew, I've had to fight for time to just sit still. Not that he doesn't know how to relax, it's jus that his idea of relaxing is skiing or biking for miles on end. Which I've also realized is quickly becoming my idea of a good time too. But all this to say is that I'm learning to just say yes and go with him, and he's learning to sit still and just relax in random ways with me. And all that to say that yesterday, on our day off, Andy agreed to take me to supper in St. Cloud and do some random window shopping. Which sounded like a great escape to me who was starting to go stir crazy.
So we made a few visits to some camera stores, managed to find another battery for our Canon-20D, and looked at remotes for it as well. Then we made a stop at Scheel's All Sports simply because it's one of our favorite places to be and spend money. Andy usually heads straight for the biking stuff while I wander a bit. So when I caught up with him, I started looking at their clearance bike jerseys since now's the time to buy. One exciting note being that I found one, but that's a sidenote. Meanwhile we "happen" to browse through their very limited (for winter) selection of clearance bikes, since it is winter afterall. And low and behold there's a Trek Madone 4.5 in 56 cm and a 58 cm... which would be Andy's size by the way. Now, our current plan has been that after we get our tax refund this year Andy would be getting a new road bike. Seeing as his is over 20 years old and I've managed to accumulate 3 new bikes these past 2 years. I at least was planning on this costing quite a bit of money and trying to plan for that accordingly. Okay, long story short, we talk to the salesmen, Andrew takes me to a yummy dinner at Buffalo Wild Wings...yum yum! and then I talk him into buying this bike, we go back, he needs a 58cm, 'cause he's so tall! and he's then convinced to buy the bike at an amazing savings of our well, savings account. Basically even though it's last year's model, it's the bike he'd love to have, at about a grand cheaper than this year's model. So he's happy, I'm excited and vindicated, and our checkbook is even happier. Oh yeah, and we also got 2 free t-shirts out of the deal. Well, rather I got the t-shirts. He gets a bike, I get the t-shirts. Seems fair.
Andy's regret is that he wasn't buying the bike at our local bike shop but really, they didn't have this bike for this price. It stinks, but it's the way it is. And also, Scheels advertises with Andy's employer, and he'll buy the pedals and his new shoes and stuff locally. Because yes, even he agreed to move up in the world to SPD-SL pedals. Wonders never cease. So come this spring folks, look out! He'll be cruising so fast you won't even see him...wait, now I'll never catch him...hmmm...should have thought about this longer...
But really, I'm super excited for him, because he did 2 races this summer and he simply couldn't keep up with the head pack, not because he's so slow, but his bike ran out of gears. So my hope is that now he'll be able to see his true potential in speed. Because really, he's super fast!
We never did make it to Barnes and Noble, which was my goal for the evening, but that's okay, we had a great dinner and I was able to make my husband excited. It was a good night. Except now it seems that our idea of relaxing is still revolving around bikes and skis. Oh well, at least we're spending our time together!