Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Julie is Gone.

Julie flew back home to Norway last Thursday.  

April (with Lucy's arrival) and May had been so crazy around here that we all sort of lived in denial about her leaving.  Me especially...I'm pretty good at denial.

It has been a whirlwind of a year here in the parsonage.  As we walked into the airport to send her back to her own country, I couldn't help but feel like we'd just been there to get her.

And at the same time, it was sort of surreal thinking of all that had gone on while she was here.  The last time I walked into that airport as the mother of boys, and this time I walked into the airport with a teenage daughter and baby girl...a baby girl that wasn't on my "plan" list for the year.  I can't help but look at myself in this picture and laugh a little...because that Sarah didn't have a clue what she was in for. :)

I still don't.

Before Julie arrived, you probably noticed *cough* that every other post involved her.  And then August came, and Julie arrived and then she pretty much dropped off the radar from my blog.  Before she came, I remember thinking how much fun it would be to blog about life with a teenager.  And then she came, and I realized, I can't blog about that, not now at least.  Because at the time, no matter how funny, or frustrating, it was just too soon.

It's amazing how some time can give us a different perspective on any given situation.  Over the next year, I hope to look back on the time Julie was here and reflect and learn from those experiences.  

Julie became a part of us.  And saying good bye at the airport that day was much harder than I had anticipated.  Or maybe it was just the fact that I had to come to terms with it...there's no denying she's leaving when you watch her board the plane and lift off.

I learned a lot about myself, having Julie here.  I learned I have waaaay more to learn about having teenagers.  ;)

It was for a time.  I keep reminding myself of that.  So much of life is just for a time.  So much of me  wants to hold on to everything just the way it is.  I look at the boys and I think STOP GROWING SO FAST.  And Lucy...already filling out and growing by the minute, and I find myself sad that it's going so quickly.  Yet...it's supposed to.  They're supposed to grow.  Julie was supposed to go home to her family.  And if I'm sad for too long, I'll miss out on the joys ahead.  

So here's to learning to let go, embracing change...even enjoying it. 

Love you, Julie!  

Wednesday, May 26, 2010


A week or so ago I tried to share some amazing pics with you...but my computer idiotness defeated me.  But today I triumphed.  Can I get a Yipee from anyone?!?  


All the pictures are courtesy of my friend Sarah.  Sarah and her family are on deputation to be missionaries in Germany.  We met last Summer, through blogging and mutual friends.  Then in August they came to tiny town to our little church to share their ministry.  And we got to meet.  And became instant friends.  After Lucy was born, she took these amazing pictures as a gift to us.  I love them.  And I love her.  And, if you go check her blog(s) out, you will love her too.  I promise.

Now...on to the "aww-ing"  (because isn't that what we all do when we see cute pictures?) 
You can click on the pics to see them larger...

Even Odie got in on it ;)

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Blatantly Obvious

I'm feeling very contemplative lately.  Maybe it's the lack of sleep.  Maybe it's the isolation that mothering a newborn brings.  I've been sucked into my own little world of feeding, diapering, snuggling, feeding, feeding, feeding, well...you get the idea.  Or maybe it's God trying to show me something about myself that I really don't want to see.

I'm savoring every moment of this newborn-fog, because I know how soon it will be over.  Gone like a flash. And I know how much I'll miss it. Yet, it's hard to escape the sense of invisible I feel lately.  I don't mean "invisible" in a depressed sort of way.  I know my value.  I know my purpose.  I know the hope I have, because God is in those.  I mean "invisible" in a disconnected from other life activities sort-of-way.  It's made me realize that life goes on without me.  

Friends will find others who have time to lend advice or just a listening ear...
Ministry will continue and even flourish...without my constant attendance...
My boys will survive without their momma knowing every detail of their day...
Running partners will find new running partners...
Life continues on...it doesn't stop to wait.  It doesn't fall apart because I'm not there.

It's got me contemplating.  Why does that hurt my pride so much?  How can it make me feel both relieved and insecure at the same time?  Relived that I don't hold all things together.  (Big surprise, I know)  Relived that I can step aside and take a break.  And the ugly insecurity?  It's for the exact same reasons...weird.  

Pride (for me) always always always causes a host of problems.  It's always on-going.  Kinda like weeding flower beds.  One day you can spend countless hours pulling the nasty weeds, and you go to bed that night thinking man, my flower beds look perfect...go me!  Only to wake up the next morning to find dozens of weeds  have seemingly grown within hours.  And then, if you're me, you think  ahhh...why bother weeding at all?!?  Dumb things just keep growing no matter what.  So I give up for awhile...until one day I notice how terrible my yard looks!  They can only be ignored for so long.  Sooner or later they're blatantly obvious.  There's no ignoring them anymore.

That is pride for me today. Blatantly obvious.  Not very pretty to look in the mirror at.  Time to undo it.

Friday, May 14, 2010

So Much Good Stuff...

Please note this is my third blog post this week.  *wink*

Last night our church held a baby shower for Lucy and I.  Lucy looked like this the whole time...

My friends from church did an amazing job hosting.  From the pink and orange decorations, to the yummy chicken salad croissants and cheesecake it really was perfection.  They even had everyone there address their own thank-you envelopes, and then sent me home with extra thank-you cards AND stamps.  Is that genius or what?!?  Being the terrible event hostess that I am,(seriously, I'm not joking...you don't want me to host anything for you...it will be oh-so-blah) I so so so appreciate those who are gifted at it.  THANK YOU MY FRIENDS!

My friend Jenni was a surprise guest and devotionalist (is that a word?  Doubtful, but I like it)  Anyways, when I saw her walk in I was confused.  I had thought I'd just given addresses for invitations to family and church people.  Jenni is technically neither.  Then I wondered if I had slipped her name in the invites without realizing it?  (my sleep deprivation on top of my already-bad-memory makes that entirely possible)  Turns out, it was just a lovely surprise for me!  She spoke on Hannah in the Bible, and reminded me of my own journey to Lucy.  Jenni and I have been friends for 6 or 7 years now...she listened to me (for quite some time) convince myself that three kids was more than enough for me.  She was also there a couple of years ago when God started whispering that maybe there was more to His plan...the letting go of the control was a journey.  It's funny how God can bring me through such a profound experience or lesson, and before long, I've already forgotten the journey ( I blogged about it here and here.)  Last night Jenni reminded me of that journey, and that Lucy was planned by God long before I had consented to handing over control.  What if I hadn't?  Makes me tear-up to think of the blessings I'd be missing...makes me examine my life right now...where am I not giving up control?  What am I missing out on because I think I know what's best?  Thank you Jenni...for being the friend that asks the hard questions, even when I don't want you to ;)  Love you.

Here's some pics...
This quilt was made by Betty from church.  Betty is a special lady to us, and this quilt is just amazing.  Did I mention she's in her mid-eighties!?!

My mother in law got Lucy her own little stroller.  I commented on how she definitely won't have her brothers wanting to share it...

I. Was. Wrong.

He also confiscated this box from her loot...

Check out all the stuff...

And the shoes!!!!

And the cutest diaper bag ever...

I'd been eyeing it since December.  But resisted.  *insert pat on back*  Thanks for not resisting, mom!! :)  

A friend gave me this...along with a Starbucks card.  Does she know me or what?!? Lucy slept through the night last night...11:30pm-6:00 am, yay!  Now, if she could keep doing that for the next week I might be able to catch up!  Until then...my kitchen looks like this:

Gonna get to it...eventually.  

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

A Dress and a Haircut

I had no idea that blogger had changed how you can upload pictures.  If you go into the settings you can change it from the "old way" to the new way.  Which means I can make them really big...without knowing any code or fancy stuff.  Go Blogger.

This is Ben's sister Sarah and Lucy in her first dress...and tights.  :)  See how big I made it!

And this is Lucy and I on Mother's Day...see how normal sized I made it? Notice how very badly I need a haircut?!?  So badly that I in fact sent Ben to the allergy doctor with Noah because it overlapped with my haircut appointment...and I just couldn't reschedule.  Does that make me a bad mom?  Heck no.  

It makes Ben a great dad.  *wink*
And here's a very bad pic of my new hair cut.  The haircut is good...picture taking abilities = bad.
Seriously, am I the only dork out there who didn't know Blogger added new capabilities?!?  There's probably other miraculous stuff out there just waiting for me...

Monday, May 10, 2010

To My Long Lost Readers...

I haven't blogged since last Monday. Yikes. It was a busy week...throw in some sleep deprivation from a newborn and ya get no blogging.

And because no amount of coffee is going to lift that fog, I give you bullet points.

  • Our internet went down yesterday. I spent quite a long time on the phone with our service provider in hopes that they could fix it. They couldn't. She told me to consult my computer professional. Which would be my brother Ryan. And THEN (after texting Ryan about my dire circumstance) I went over to see if the wireless router was plugged into the wall...and it WAS NOT! And then I fixed it. YAY me! Note to Qwest: the next time I call, you should in fact treat me like an idiot and ask if it is plugged into the wall. Problem solved.
  • Little Lucy is a little bit naughty at night-time. Apparently the Moses Basket that she spends countless hours a day napping in, is not good enough at night time. She wants to snuggle in my arms. Which is precious. And annoying all at the same time. But man, is she cute.
  • The adorable pictures at the top were taken by my friend Sarah. So the "Captured by Sarah" is not me. I wish it were...I also wish the PICTURES WERE BIGGER AND THAT BLOGGER WOULD JUST COOPERATE WITH ME! She took so many good ones, and I'll work on getting them posted soon, because you really will want to see them...in a size that you don't need a magnifying glass for. Blogger better get it's act together in the mean time...or else. ;)
  • It's hair cut day today. I had debated letting it grow out a little more, because it's already several inches longer than it was (thanks to hormones and preggo vitamins.) And then I remembered that I really don't like my hair that long and so today, the inches are coming off. If only a haircut could also take away about 30 pregnancy pounds with it...
  • I've had lots of emails asking how nursing is going...remember that post? I'm happy (and amazed) top report that it's going really well!! Lucy is a natural at it...and thanks to you and your comments (and my nurse-friend Stephanie) I'm much better prepared this time around. But...
  • Lucy will be 3 weeks old tomorrow. I'm gonna wait another week and start mostly walking/jogging. I'm so anxious to get back to running, I miss it terribly. But, the thought of running with "these nursing machines" I currently have makes me cringe in pain a little. Any tips other than binding my sports bra even tighter with massive amounts of duct tape?!? Seriously. Help me.
Well, I think that's more than enough information to process for one day. :)

Monday, May 3, 2010


My real life is a lot like my blog. It goes in tangents. If you've read for very long, you've probably thought to yourself, "Dude, she beats a topic to death and then moves on to a new one...which she then proceeds to beat to death...and so on and so on..."

That old saying, Variety is the spice of life...may be true. I wouldn't know, I'm not good with variety. Or balance. I tend to focus on one thing at a time. Which is good for the one thing and not so good for everything else.

Lately, it's been pregnancy, baby Lucy, her three big brothers and the newness of being a family with four kiddos (which happens to feel pretty great:)

Ministry has taken a back burner for me. Which is ok and not ok at the same time. The ok part is the brief break I'm taking from my "official" ministry roles at church...other gifted individuals have stepped in and done wonderfully. But during Ben's sermon last night, he talked about our personal witness and ministry to those around us...the "unofficial" stuff...and I knew God was trying to get my attention.

The stuff like spending time in God's word and prayer...enough time to actually hear Him...not just opening it up and reading quickly here and there in order to make myself feel better that I actually opened it up *cough*

Being conscious again that my life, all of it, all the time is a witness to those around me. God has placed me right here. For a purpose. A purpose bigger than what I've boxed it into lately.

Of all the things in my life, the one that always always always needs to be my "tangent" is my relationship with Christ. Yet, sadly, it's often the first thing I push down the list. Every. Single. Time.

But amazingly, every single time...He quietly and gently calls me back. His love and patience with me astounds me. It really does. He doesn't need me. He is God, after all. But...He loves me enough to never let go. I don't know if I'll ever be able to wrap my head around that.

But I'm so thankful for it. And someday, I'd like to be that woman...that pastor's wife, the one who always keeps Christ first where He belongs...but until then, it's just me. Good thing He's not finished with me yet.
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