Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Mothers Day...

Somehow, my crazy thoughts led me to this story this morning, and realized I had pondered these things in my heart for 3 years and had never shared them out loud.  God is so good to bring about lessons from our crazy thoughts.

On the day Abby Kate was born, I was giddy and could not wait to see her sweet face.  For 9 months I had imagined what she looked like, and as all parents feel, I think, she far surpassed what I could have asked or imagined.  Funny enough, the first thing I noticed on my perfect daughter was not her beautiful face, her dimple, her dark hair and skin, but it was her hands....and they took my breath away.  No, she did not have 6 fingers or strangely large or small hands, but she had MY hands.  Every detail of her hands reflected mine.  Her fingers were long and lean.  She had wrinkles that resembled mine, even her tiny fingernails were shaped like mine.  

I have thought back on this so many times.  I had no idea my baby would be the spitting image of my handsome husband.  Even my sweet Nannie stared in her precious face and asked, "where is my baby in you?" (me being the referenced baby :)  However, her hands were exclusively mine.  And now, every time she laces her slender fingers through mine, I get a little teary.  I remember God knitted her together with part Bobby and part me.  How creative.  How intimate.  How beautiful.

But you know, as egocentric as we are...hoping to see a glimpse of ourselves in the tiny life we birth, I have realized how powerful that is....that God uses two parts of a person to make another whole person.  And not only is that powerful, it is humbling.  So humbling.  Watching another walk around with traits of your own is a bit surreal.  And it becomes even more harrowing when your personality traits, your habits, your faults become evident.  That is why, I believe, parenting is the single hardest thing I have attempted.  It is why I am daily crying out for God's to parent her through me, to help me get past myself to point her to a perfect Father who will change her life.  Who will bring freedom.  Hope.  Beauty.  Purpose.  
There is not a day that I do not ask God, myself, and others who will listen....HOW exactly do I do that?  Our pastor is doing an incredible series right now on parenting that has been incredible and impacting.  You can listen to the series here.

But a few things that he has taught that has strongly convicted me and touched my heart.  One being that we need to study our children.  God is a perfect Craftsman.  No two people are alike.  So we are encouraged to study our children and know how God made them.  How they are best loved.  What gifts God has given them.  How they are made uniquely to contribute to the world and what God wants to do with them in the world.  And two, every day my ability to point Abby Kate to Christ comes from an overflow of my own relationship with Him.  We cannot give our children something we don't have ourselves.  If I do not know the Word, the moral reasons why I say "no" or why I teach certain character traits, then I cannot teach Abby Kate.  I cannot merely hope that Abby Kate will see me attending church and acting a certain way on Sundays.  She has to see my faith as my life.  Every day, every second, every action, every word.   It feels like such an overwhelming task.  Impossible really.  And it is.  It truly is when I am walking in my flesh, feeding it the things it wants, like gossip and greed and lies and materialism and selfishness and pride and laziness.  But I have found, when I arise before my household, cry out to my Father for help, for guidance, for wisdom, for His will to be done, my day suddenly becomes more intentional.   And I am reminded that motherhood is God's greatest call on my life.  That raising my children to live a life about knowing Him and making Him known matters above all else.  I truly believe motherhood coupled with marriage is God's ultimate training ground.  He expands your heart to learn new truths about Him through the joys and hardships of both.  To strip you of selfishness, to broaden your understanding of unconditional love, to learn faithfulness and patience, to experience the power of redemption.  

So this weekend, I am so profoundly grateful.  For my child who I get to love on daily.  For this child who I feel kicking and moving around inside of me.  For the child/children I pray I may bear in the future and/or for the child/children we may adopt one day.  For it is through them that my understanding of the love of my Father has been deepened and heightened and widened.  And really, is there any more precious a gift He could give me with exception of His own Son?  And by allowing me to become a mother, showing me His own love for me through that act?  So, thank you Father for allowing me to experience Mother's Day.  Not the holiday in which my children (or husband) runs out to buy me a present.  But a yearly reminder of the blessing of being allowed to do what I do.  And the daily reminder that I must do better.  Not the guilt and shame that You do not author, but the reminder that I desperately need YOU.  And the sweet knowledge at the end of the day that I can cry out and ask You to redeem my mistakes.  And You will....

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Bo's Room

I finished Bo's room last week and am thrilled with how it turned out!  The only thing I had to buy was the bedding and it came with the valance and everything so it was SUPER easy this time!  I am having our rocker recovered and it will go in the blank corner and we are getting a cow hide rug for the floor but I love it all!  We had all the western decor in one of our guest rooms as my sweet hubby loves and had collected it so it only took putting it together.  Now I am going to sit back and relax in my 3rd trimester, enjoying my girl and fixing good food to freeze!  

Thursday, April 09, 2009


I woke up Monday morning and spent time in the Word, convicted at the end that I should seek fun ways and exciting traditions to begin for our family as we celebrate Easter.  As a Christian, this week is paramount for our faith.  I want this holiday to be the greatest celebration my children know...I so desire for them to look forward to it as I did for Christmas.  But then, classic to my distracted nature, I forgot until last night.  As I laid in bed trying to fall asleep, I startled awake wondering how in the world it had become Wednesday night and I still had done nothing to teach Abby Kate or to begin the anticipation of Resurrection Sunday.  So this morning, I asked my precious Bible study friends to share what they did and got some fun responses....thank goodness God has given so many creative brains.  Mine is wired more for stories, dreams and vision verses actual ways to carry out that vision or dream.  And though I love the art of telling stories, both verbally and written, my communication gifts are best suited for teenagers, college students and young adults.  So I often feel absolutely clueless when I communicating with my precious 3 year old.  
Here are some fun things they shared...
My super creative and precious friend Ashley shared about resurrection bread (which she shows how to make on her blog) and resurrection eggs, which I promptly went and purchased after Bible study.  I bought ours at Mardel's for under $10.  They are adorable plastic different colored eggs which are numbered and inside each one is a token that tells the story of Jesus and the cross.  You can open them each and tell the story or open one each day leading up to Easter.  It comes with a book if you do not feel comfortable telling the story.  It is a great visual and Abby Kate LOVED it!
My other sweet friend Lisa shared of a fair they had attended where they used paper that disintegrated in water and each person wrote a sin they had committed that day on it.  After telling the story of Jesus dying on the cross to remove our sins, they placed the paper in a large bowl of water and watched them disintegrate.  She said her 4 year old exclaimed, "OH! Jesus died so my sin would be taken away forever!"  Wow.  A great lesson.

So if you have more...I would LOVE to hear them.  

Until then, I pray for each of you that you have a restful and blessed Resurrection Sunday...and  that you celebrate with your whole hearts at the fact that we serve the only living God!  

Thursday, April 02, 2009


Abby Kate

Well, we had another doctor's appointment today so I had to share our latest "pic."  When I saw his profile today, I literally gasped thinking back on the profile picture that I had framed for months of Abby Kate.  I think they are pretty similar.  So fun.
I have also felt pretty huge.  I have gotten BIG this time, thinking I was not even out of my normal clothes at this point with Abby Kate and I just feel gigantic.  I have gained the same amount of weight at this point as I did with Abby Kate so my OB measured me and I am measuring 3-4 weeks bigger than I am!  CRAZY!  I am just praying I do not have to mimic my mother in law who gave birth to my 10 lb 13 oz, 23 inch long husband!  AGH!  I have such an easy birth story from Abby Kate, I don't think I will be singing the same tune if I have to deliver a huge boy.

In other news, we got back from an incredible trip to Vegas with my parents, my brother Hal and his buddy Mike.  My sweet sister Ash is too close to delivery so she could not travel (and we missed her :).  We had a ball.  Strangely, we all forgot our cameras.   We ate delicious food (14 meals with no toddler), shopped and watched great shows.  One of the highlights was seeing Ray Ramono and Kevin James do stand-up and Adam Sandler surprising the audience at the end.  It was crazy fun!  My sweet sister-in-law sacrificed her spring break to play with Abby Kate and my incredible mother-in-law took off a few days as well.  I am so thankful for family!  Though being away from Abby Kate so long was hard, it really helped me return home rested and renewed, ready to tackle motherhood with excited vision.  There is nothing like being away to cause you to reflect and see areas that need to be worked on.  So I am home, loving on my girl with reckless abandon, savoring these last few months of having an only child.  And it was great to be away with my hubby too :)
I pray you are all doing well!