Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Monday, March 29, 2010

Birth Pains

The birth pains of having children were designed by God to bring child into this sinful world; as our Williams quiver grows, I see that those same birth pains continue after our little blessing lay in my arms. There is much pain in growing spiritually, there is much growth in being pushed beyond what I in my flesh am capable of doing. As I sit here this morning meditating on my exhaustion and wondering why last week was so much better and far less discouraging, I'm reminded that walking in the Spirit is Supernatural. Last week I was consistent and diligent to get into the Word of God, I was constantly in prayer and asking the Lord for His portion to get me through each moment. We had a great week of learning, discipleship, growth, and fun! Today, Monday, I overslept, didn't get time with the Lord, fumbled to get things done, grouched at my children, didn't make it to the gym, and now I sit, finally resting in the hands of my Father. He is so sweet to remind me of where "my strength comes from." So, after naps this afternoon, my prayer is our day begins again - afresh and renewed - focused on our Lord and walking in His Spirit.

The Christian life is a process whether you are 3 or 30 - it has no earthly destination; just a road full of obstacles ready to be mastered, preparing us for greatness in the kingdom of God.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Abby @ 9 weeks

Abby is 9 weeks old! She weighs around 8 pounds and is 19 inches long. Most people who see her think she is merely days old -- they are quite shocked when I say she is already 9 weeks. This week, on her 9 week birthday I was finally able to introduce her to my M2M group and my special mentor mom's. It was so wonderful to relish in God's answered prayers for our family, after 3 months of being away from my Christian sisters,  I was finally able to share communion and our precious gift Abby with them all. What smiles all those women had when they saw her - they had been diligently praying for her health for over three months. It is so wonderful to celebrate answered prayer! "Grandma" Johnnie was especially excited to see Abby since she was sick around the same time we all were so she hadn't seen Abby since she was 2 weeks old.  Sweet Johnnie was delighted to rock and feed Abby while I enjoyed our lesson. It was a wonderful few hours of rest before taking all the kiddo's home for a wild afternoon.

Abby is eating 3oz every 3 hours; she loves to eat and has no patience! She will only nurse a few moments and then when the milk stops flowing easily she gives up and cries for a bottle. That means I spend a lot of time pumping and cleaning bottles.  Abby is much different than the boys, she must be swaddled or in the baby Bjorn in order to sleep, she hasn't a clue what to do when she isn't packed all together, so she just lays there and cries. She is still constipated and we just added Mira-lax to her bottles, but she still isn't getting close to regular. Her tummy is very bloated and her belly button really sticks out (there is a little hernia under the belly button too).  Abby loves to sleep, either in the Baby Bjorn, swaddled in her swing, or in her Papasan seat. She is yet to find her schedule, sleeping almost all day and then a few days later up all afternoon and into the evening. She enjoys baths, being loved on by her protective brothers, and riding in the car, though she isn't fond of her car seat when its not moving. She is on breathing treatments for the next two months, then we'll take her off of them and see how she fares.

I'm finding that three little munchkins is a lot of work, but it has also forced me to relish quick periods when everyone is awake and happy to enjoy one another - like dancing to crazy music or making fun and quick art projects. I've been trying to get Gabe and Drew together more, working as a team on projects. I still tend to look at Gabe as a baby, but he is much more capable than I give him credit for. He has really stepped up and expected me to give him chores and jobs just like Drew has. Gabe loves to feed his sister in the car and is the best passy finder in the house. Both boys adapted to having a little sister with flying colors, they are yet to act jealous and seem to find Abby a great asset to our family.

Drew & I had a dental visit this week - no cavities! You should have seen the faces on all the people when I came waltzing in with three kids! Gabe watched Drew get Xrays and have his teeth cleaned; he enjoyed the process and didn't act scared. Gabe will get his turn at the dentist when he is 3! After Drew was done,  my mom came and picked up all the kids and I had my teeth cleaned. You know your a busy mom when you tell the hygienist that sitting having your teeth cleaned is like being at the Spa! I had a whole hour to myself, it was heaven.  I really was pleased with the kids behavior, they were so well behaved and interactive with the dentist and hygienist so well. It opened some doors to a great discussion about the Lord and how influential He is in our parenting. I've been cautiously witnessing to our hygienist for the past 6 year, she had a difficult marraige, then divorce, and has a special needs child  - she is very angry at God and our family doesn't quite fit in her"God box". She was rather inpersonable to me until John began going to her for cleanings a few years back, his "special needs" broke through her wall and she has been much more open about herself and family. This past appointment she mentioned how special it is to see a married couple so close and raising such wonderful kids. It was a great opening to share with her the mighty work the Lord has done in our lives. I can't wait for my next appointment in September, we're already praying for more doors to open!

I finally activated my gym membership this week - that was hard because once I un-suspended the membership I knew I'd have to start going. So, I got up at 4:45 am on Friday, pumped for Abby,  and headed to my first spin class since June. I didn't fall off the bike, but realized how little endurance I have left. I did manage to stay awake all day and found myself praying a lot for energy and power from the Holy Spirit (which is a great thing I should be doing everyday). The time spent spinning on the bike I try and pass in prayer. I specifically prayed that I would handle the challenges of never getting a break well - lately I've seen my patience level drop and my attitude act resentful to my kids and husband. I also prayed for my words to be sweet and kind to my kiddo's. One specific place I've been reading is in the Psalms. This month my call to action has been praying & practicing Psalm 141:3 which says, " 3Set a guard, O LORD, over my mouth; Keep watch over the door of my lips." I must say that I get tons of practice everyday. Drew constantly asks questions and this verse challenges me to think before I speak - to speak words of life instead of words that bring down. It also helps me to stay silent as much as I can, its much easier to hear God in the silence (which is rare with three kiddo's) that when I'm constantly rambling off every thought that comes into my head. I have found that intentionally speaking words of life to others has a profound impact on my own inner thoughts. When I am always thinking of building others up, those negative thoughts don't have room to take shape or fester. Each new day brings challenges into my life, most are thoughts and attitudes that the Lord is wanting to work on. There is a joy in having three kids and no time, it brings out the worst in my at times which allows me to work that much harder and call upon the Lord to live His life through me. I can't do this thing on my own and when I al truly walking in the Spirit amazing God-things happen!

As we prepare for the week leading up to Easter, please pray that I'll keep Christ the  center of all things. That the wonderful gift of Easter will not pass by our home, but that we would stop and celebrate the wonderful Gift that Christ gave us on the Cross.As Drew shared with Nana last night, "We serve a living God, not a dead God!" Amen to that, for if Christ had not risen then He would have been merely another man claiming to be God - Jesus was either a Liar, A Lunatic or the Lord and his resurrection on Sunday proved to the entire world - past, present, and future generations that He was who He claimed to me - Jesus Christ our Savior!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Inscriptions For Gabe

"Gabers", you are such a blessing! We had 5 whole days with just us (and Abby who slept through most of it!). Without your older brother around I realized that your blossoming personality is beginning to emerge. Your not a little baby anymore, you are turning into a little boy with your own unique thoughts. You interact with nature through touch and thought, you think through your actions and then dive right in without fear. God has blessed you with a quick mind and a fearlessness that will serve you well in life.

You are such an intelligent and inquisitive little man, your vocabulary is growing and without Drew to interrupt and answer for you I've been able to hear many new words come out of your mouth. You love to say "stop it" and "help me!"  Without an older brother around you became my helper, when I needed something you would get upset if I did it myself, You were always looking for opportunities to serve - you get that trait from your daddy! Gabe, you loved to follow me around and ask questions, hand me books, look at the frogs, play trains, and run around outside. You enjoyed special mommy time  and your normally quiet behavior blossomed into a little boy of thunder! I could see your mind swimming with ideas just waiting to come to life!
You ran around energetically, asked me questions by pointing or bringing me things. You loved playing on the playground going up and down the slide repeatedly. You became my little boy, always checking to make sure I wasn't leaving you because you were fearful that with Daddy and Drew gone I was next. It was a wonderful time just the two of us!

While Daddy was gone I scanned a bunch of pictures from his childhood, I can't believe how much you look just like your Daddy! I pray you grow into a man and follow in your Daddy's footsteps!

You most certainly have his wide-eyed smile and golden hair!Your simular personality is an added bonus!

Friday, March 12, 2010

Just a Blink.....

12 years ago today I met the man of my dreams. He wasn't everything I had prayed for, but after 12 quick years he is now a godly man that I couldn't have ever imagined being married to. God has blessed John with a steadfast love for life and integrity that can only come out of a deep love for our Lord. My husband has grown into a man whose character is beyond what I prayed for as a teenager. John is a man above reproach, my friend at all times, even when I'm not very pleasing to be around. John is a servant leader whose intentions are always for our good. I am a blessed woman to be married to such a man!

What a privilege to be married to such an amazing man for over 7 years. I can't wait for him to return home from Oregon in just a few more days! His place in the family is greatly missed.

As our family moves into a new chapter of our lives- a family of 5, complete, and ready to jump into life I've been looking back a lot at where we came from and where we want to lead our family. John and I have been praying lately asking God for direction and discernment as we move into this next phase of family life.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Abby Is 8 Weeks Old!

Here is Abby sporting some new Newborn outfits on her 8 week old birthday! Don't you just lover her double chin! We'll go back in Friday to get her new stats. I bet she is 7 1/2 pounds by now.

Vitamin D

We had a great week of wonderful weather and some fun learning time. I'll post more later, but here are some pictures of the fun we've been having.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Greater Things Are Yet To Come....

(Abby at almost 7  weeks - weighs in at 7 pounds exactly!)

It has been a long week, I tried to attend my mother's conference Friday and Saturday, but only made it until 4:00 am Saturday morning when Abby's sniffles got worse. So, my sister and I packed up and headed home. I put Abby on the pulse-oxygen monitor and she was breathing at 100%, go figure. She has been like that for 4 days now, she sounds yucky but is breathing great. I'm taking her in to the doctor today just to make sure I'm not missing anything. John had the flu or food poisoning over the weekend so he was out too. It made for a rather depressing weekend, but Monday was a new day! I set up a schedule, thanks to John's encouragement, and was able to feel like I accomplished something! We did school, played with cars and water and swords, Gabe had blanket time and Drew actually did all his chores without grumbling or complaining (something we've been working on the past few weeks!). I even managed to make us a yummy dinner! The boys also have some sniffles and a cough so they are on breathing treatments 2x a day -it seems to be asthma related since they are having symptoms of eczema and hay fever which worsen at night and in the early mornings.

On to better news, Abby is sleeping better and I am feeling way less depressed. We made the decision to send Drew to a private Kindergarten next year, John will work a part time job this summer to pay the tuition. We'll also home-school him in some basics this Spring/Summer to see how things go. His reading lessons are slowing but I've discovered he is great at math.... go figure! We've been working on counting to 100 this week and he is almost there. He also has learned to count by 10's/ We also studied volcano's yesterday which he loved! We talked about Mt. Saint Helens eruption in 1980 and learned about magma and how volcano's are formed. Daddy is going to take Drew up to Mt. Saint Helens in a few weeks when they are in Oregon for John's brothers wedding. Such fun! Gabe has been enjoying blanket time and wrestling with Mommy. Yesterday he had horsey rides on my back and just loved it! We also played in water with some trucks, its so much fun to be 2!

Abby is growing like a weed, at 6 weeks old she has moved from Preemie clothes to Newborn clothes. I'm taking her in today to get her lungs looked at and we'll see what she weighs, I bet she is over 7 pounds. UPDATE: She weighed 7 pounds exactly! Her constipation was due to the Zantac so they moved her to Axid, which did the trick, she has had 3 BM's in 24 hours!

She is still constipated a lot and very gassy, but it doesn't seem to bother her too much. She sleeps mostly through the night, with her final feeding around 11 pm, then 4 am and again at 8 am. This morning I freaked out because I awoke at 6:00 am and she hadn't cried for her middle of the night feeding. I went in and woke her up, relieved that she was just fine. Abby's favorite spot to sleep is in her vibration chair in our walk in closet. She loves the quiet, darkness, and the smell of Mommy's clothes. Abby loves to be swaddled and is rarely happy all spralled out, she loves confinement!
(Being Entertained with Water and Bugs while Mommy made Dinner)