Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Redemption Day - Four Years Later

Oh, this day.  I went to bed last night not thinking I would fully feel the weight of it when I woke up..but Im so, so thankful I did.  I don't ever want to not feel it.  Knowing the reality of Ansley's diagnosis is what makes the mighty redemption God has poured out over her life that much MORE a display of his power and grace in her life.  We celebrate this day every year and I never could have dreamed four years ago that this would be as sweet as it is. 

And today...?  We're leaving for Disneyworld as soon as Daddy gets home :)  I am BESIDE myself!  Our sweet love, who we knew may never have the gift of speaking, is running around talking about meeting Minnie & Jake...seeing the princess castle...and on and on.  Zachary can hardly contain himself making sure we remember everything he wants to do/see/experience.  It is SO fun to see how excited they are. 

We've had many a request for updated pictures, so I'll leave you with a few...but you can rest assured we'll be back with more once we're home from the most magical place on earth!! 




 

Friday, March 8, 2013

FIGHT

I've never been the resolution type, but I asked God to give me a "word" for the new year.  Literally, a word.  Over the course of the next few weeks it was clear....

                                  FIGHT.

The past 8 or so months have been heavy.  And to be honest, I was having a hard time not sinking in the rough waters.  The waves are certainly going to knock you down because frankly, they're meant to.  Since when were struggles and trials not supposed to be hard?!  But oh, the waves seemed to get bigger and bigger each pass.  FIGHT.

"When you pass through the waters, I will be with you;
and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you."
Isaiah 43:2

Its ironic to re-read my hopes for Zachary's kindergarten year, because oh myyy how the Lord has granted those requests.  My boy certainly had to learn where to look for Help because we encountered difficulties far beyond what I was prepared for in those first few months of "kinder fun"...but now...HE KNOWS where his Help comes from.  Listening to his pleas on the way to school those first few months..., "Dear Lord Jesus, please be with me the whole day today. Please be with me the whole day."  Tear filled Momma & Daddy pleadings we never saw coming for deliverance.  FIGHT.



And that angel girl...letting go of sorrow's past.  STANDING UP.  Refusing to let the waters drown me.  Impossible still.  Fighting to believe He is not done writing her story.  Because she needs my prayers and hope in the One whose power has been unleashed upon her more than I can recount.  FIGHT.



Confidence in the burn of our hearts to bring the fatherless into our home.  To continue building our family...but knowing He is sovereign still.  FIGHT. 

Knowing God gives us our first breath and appoints our last...

-My sweet Pawpaw, who preached the hope of Jesus Christ for nearly 50 years, set free after a two year fight with cancer.  The next day welcoming 10 houseguests for our college group's retreat in our home.  Juggling gravesides and students...wanting to be present with them...wanting to grieve.  An angry neighbor trying to ticket our student's cars...and a stomach bug hitting my three loves an hour later.

- A young mom...family of a family member... losing her cancer battle with two little loves, a husband and family left with ache. 

-And a beautiful friend and her boy.  Oh, the FIGHT for hope in this sorrow.  I spent sweet time in a mom's group at my church for a few years when Zachary was a wee one.  News came in the night that their lives had been taken by the hand of her husband.  Horror that continues...two angel girls still living.  Only God can redeem.

"I will make rivers flow on barren heights; and springs within the valleys.
I will turn the desert into pools of water, and the parched ground into springs.
Isaiah 41:18
He invites me to FIGHT.  For more hope, more trust...belief in the redemption only His hand can bring.  Life only He can give.  Wounds only He can bind up and heal.  He is good.  He is good.  And His love endures forever.

Friday, August 17, 2012

He's SIX!!


There have been few evenings lately that have not included teary eyed talks with the husband about this boy and the coming kinder fun.  We have talked about it like it's Disneyworld and after his orientation day...he was hooked.  Made a momma's heart let out a big sigh of relief!  And though I'm far from elated he'll be gone all day...I'm excited for him because he's so excited. 


Zachary's birthday was widespread over parties with buddies and parties with families.

 

p.s. It undoubtedly needs to mentioned that his slow pokin' momma smoked everyone on that track and came in first for the birthday boy. 


Sister needed some ice water & a shady spot to relax with her main squeeze on that hot summer day.  And no, Rob is not profusely sweating from the shoulder...he had just come off the bumper boats.

THE day started off with birthday donuts...



Minnie & company can often be found suiting up in brother's fire station :)

Zachary shares a birthday with my oldest brother, so we had a fun family double birthday celebration.

And birthday boy ninja training...

Yes, all birthday boys :)
A slightly more typical representation of my oldest sweet.  His heart is being so pruned right now...Rob & I can both see it.  The teary eyed questions, the desire to know more...the Lord is stirring in him.  Hoping his name is called into the kingdom soon! 
And as we prepare to venture into the school days, my greatest desire is that his heart knows TRUTH.  To be equipped in knowing how to FIGHT his battles and where to look for Help. 
A new season for him and for me.  Going to miss him like CRAZY, but I know it'll make our time together that much better.  Shew...slow this train down!!!
Judges 6:12 "...The LORD is with you, mighty warrior."
That's all you ever need, Buddy.  Love you more than words my growing boy...Happy 6th Birthday!

*Look below for "She's THREE!!*

Thursday, August 16, 2012

She's THREE!!

Father's Day collided with Ansley's birthday this year...which led to some hilarious Father's Day questionnaires {by the sweets} followed by a birthday/Father's day breakfast.  Courtesy of PDub.  She wasn't actually at our house...but you get the idea.




 If you are awake, you might pick up on a theme surrounding our golden haired angel's birthday. 

 
It's so weird that Zachary happened to match his sister for church that morning.


 Birthday party goodness was had...candles were blown out...hopes were cast once again in our heart's for the coming year.

 

Psalm 65:11 "You crown the year with your bounty, and your carts overflow with abundance."



 This year holds much anticipation for our littlest sweet.  With her first day of preschool less than a week away...my heart is FULL.  Can't pretend there isn't fear mixed in with our overwhelming excitement, but I want to try to operate out of the hope of the crown of bounty already in place for her.  I want to sit in a desperate anticipation of watching her cart be filled...one sweet life gift at a time this year.  To absolute...overwhelming...overflowing abundance.  Because of our great and merciful God who has displayed his hand of strength in her thus far.  He continues to require...TRUST.  He continues to invite us into...IMPOSSIBLE HOPE...bold surrender.  The only place where there is rest.  So hard for me.  CanNOT believe it has been three years.  To look back...I remember all of it.  You know what gets me...what really gets me? 

"Psalm 56:8 "You keep track of all my sorrows. You have collected all my tears in your bottle. You have recorded each one in your book."

Not one moment unnoticed by the One who desires my heart above all else. Not one.  Patiently collecting each tear knowing His power is coming.  Refining fires...so painful...but He knows not even a smoky stinge will remain.  I have become speechless in the moments of realizing how fully He has moved for her.  How He has spoken LIFE of out what was dead in her brain.  And I love that no doctor on this planet could tell you otherwise.  Our unexplainable miracle girl.



Happy 3rd birthday lovie.  Sing with a LOUD voice my sweet.

Luke 17:5 "One of them, when he saw he was healed, came back, praising God in a loud voice."

p.s. you'll never guess what kind of backpack she has :)

(Zachary's birthday post coming a little later this evening...Berenstain Bears just ended :))

Friday, June 22, 2012

Chicago!

Rob's grandparents just shared their 60th wedding anniversary...so we took a fun weekend trip to Chicago to see the whole extended fam.
(You are about to experience an obscene amount of pictures...just felt it fair to warn you at the onset)




If you have a little boy who loves firefighters, as you know ours does...take him to the Firezone outside of Chicago...FU-UN!






He enthusiastically answered every question, so it only made sense that he was the demonstration helper :)



p.s. Chicago is cold.



Happy 60th to Grandpa Rich & Grandma DeeDee!!!


My sleeping buddy for the weekend.  We had 2 king beds and decided in favor of sleep, so Rob slept with Ansley in one and I slept with Zachary in the other.  Both kids (and parents) slept like champs.  Worth it!





"The Cloud Gate"...but we preferred to call it the bean.

 



The closest we got to a group picture...and there were over 50 of us...so as you can see...not the best attempt :)




FUN getaway!