Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Thank you for your prayers

The surgeries went well. God is so faithful and helped me to be able to go in with Vivian until she fell asleep. My fears instantly vanished. And she hopped up on the table no problem. Tim decided to go in with Leah because she was having a rough time with fear. It turned out to be a great decision since they had to restrain her and he does so much better with those types of situations. The surgeries were quick, each one only lasting about 20-30 min. The staff was AWESOME and came and got us as soon as Vivian was awake. She had a really tough time with the anesthesia. She was very combative and screaming. :( Before we could even really think about it, Leah was coming in, popsicle in hand. She did better with the anesthesia but did have a couple of bouts with stomach upset. We were able to go home within an hour or so of Leah being done. The recovery has been much harder for Vivian but still not even as bad as we were anticipating.

And I got the most wonderful anniversary present ever!! Tim got up with the girls and let me sleep. I love this man!!

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Prayers please

Vivian and Leah are having their tonsils and adenoids out on Mon at 7:00am. Any prayers would be greatly appreciated. I was completely fine until I went for the pre op appt and found out all the things that could go wrong and that we can go in with them while they fall asleep. I know they will be completely fine, but I can't watch them fall asleep like that. Tim said he will go in with them. I am praying that they surgeries will go as expected and that the recovery time will be minimal. The dr said that they could be down for a week or more. It just depends how on them.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Ok so last week I became the mom of a teenager....


.....my baby will be three years old.


Lord please help me to slow down and enjoy them while they are young. Thank you so much for allowing me to be their mommy.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Teenage Eve

Well, today is teenage eve at our house.

Meaning tomorrow morning our first born will wake up as a teenager.


This is turning out to be the hardest milestone for this mama's heart, yet. With many more to come, I am sure.

But there is a funny note to add.

I did the math and this will be the beginning of 17 years of being a parent to a teenager. Something to look forward too right?!?!

Monday, November 30, 2009

How great is our God!!!

The last few weeks have been very trying. In addition to Vivian's breathing issues, Tim has had a neck problem that for the last week has been causing numbness in his arms, dizziness and nausea. The dr thinks that his brain stem is being pinched by his vertebrae. We don't have traditional health insurance, so anything that we spend up until our (high) deductible is out of pocket. That has been causing stress for Tim and I have been very anxious for the past week wondering and waiting to find out what is wrong with my husband.

I want to share something AWESOME that God has done.

I was opening our mail (that has been in a pile for a few days) and I found a card addressed to Mr and Mrs Brown with this note inside....

Tim and Audrey,

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any troubles with the comfort we ourselves have received from God. 2 Cor 1:3-4

A little gift from God

In the card was $300 in cash.

I picked up the phone to call Tim. He answered and immediately got a call and put me on hold. When he came back, I quickly told him about the note. He was silent on the other end for a min and then said, "The call that I got was the dr's office telling me that the ct scan is scheduled for tomorrow and it will cost $300."

Sing with me.... How Great is Our God!!!!!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

It's AMAZING....

What a little sleep will do.

I have had a couple nights of (Niquil induced) good sleep and I feel like a different person! Vivian has slept in her bed the last two nights (fairly quietly) and she has sleep pretty well.

We went for a 2nd opinion yesterday and the ENT took one look at hers (and Leah's) tonsils and said they have extremely large tonsils that aren't that way due to sickness, they are just genetically large. So he recommends having them out. The thing is that we do have to wait for Vivian to turn three or else she would have to be admitted to the hospital. So I am planning for 12/28, the Monday after Christmas. I think she will be fine until then as long as she doesn't get sick.

So there is an end in sight!!

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Trials, they are a plenty

Well, let's just say we are in a "season of trials."

We went to the ENT and they said it will be about 6 weeks before they determine if Vivian's tonsils will come out, after allergy testing and medication. So...... 6 more weeks of making sure that she is breathing at night and making sure that she doesn't get sick and make her condition worse.
In addition to.....

-Leah who continues to not sleep well at night. By that I mean she gets up 5-6 night a week, resulting in a very sleepy and cranky girl every day at about 5pm. We have found out now that she too has obstructive sleep apnea and may need her tonsils out.

-Major issues on the business side of life. With very little notice, a major account lost due to no fault of our own, at the worst possible time of the year and this blow was provided by "friends" of ours.

- The main waterline to our house was run over and broken. Thankfully Tim was able to fix that pretty quickly.

-Week number two of sickness for me. Complete with ZERO voice which has been fun with 4 kids. Add this on top of my thyroid being off and you have a mama that can barely function.

Through all of this and more, I am being constantly reminded of the song that I sang at church after our son Jacob died. I have even arranged to sing it tomorrow at church. But I will most likely have to postpone, since I have no voice. Tell me that satan is not just working overtime on us. But I will cling to this song and others as I walk through these things that God has ordained for me. Pretty or Ugly, Fun or Not, God has ordained this path and I will walk through it. And try to learn everything that I can from Him while I am walking.

The pathway is broken
And The signs are unclear
And I don't know the reason why You brought me here
But just because You love me the way that You do
I'm gonna walk through the valley
If You want me to

Cause I'm not who I was
When I took my first step
And I'm clinging to the promise You're not through with me yet
so if all of these trials bring me closer to you
Then I will walk through the fire
If You want me to

It may not be the way I would have chosen
When you lead me through a world that's not my home
But You never said it would be easy
You only said I'd never go alone

So When the whole world turns against me
And I'm all by myself
And I can't hear You answer my cries for help
I'll remember the suffering Your love put You through
And I will go through the valley If You want me to
Cause when I cross over Jordan, I'm gonna scream, I'm gonna shout
I'm gonna look into your eyes and say, "You never let me down, so take me on the pathway that leads me home to you, and I will walk through the valley, If you want me to. "
by: Ginny Owens

Sunday, October 18, 2009

The blessings of friends

Thank you to my sweet friends....

One who talked me through my nervous breakdown today when I just about couldn't take it anymore and graciously lent me an awesome space heater that is currently heating my whole upstairs since our heater exploded this morning and is now out of commission.

One who is coming over tomorrow to take care of Miss Mercy tomorrow so that Mercy wont have to stay in her crate all day while I am gone to a school field trip with Mackenzie. I am also thankful for her hubby, Jerimy, who is our chiropractor and is helping us take care of our sick little one.

One who, on a moment's notice, is watching my two youngest kiddos for the field trip despite the fact that it's her bday tomorrow, she has a cold, she has an art class at her home in the morning and her in-laws are in town for a visit. Oh and did I mention the fact that she is going into this knowing that Vivian will probably be a bear since she is so tired? And she is feeding them lunch so that I don't have to pack their lunches?

And last, but certainly not least, my hubalicious who is the most amazing friend ever. He has slept on the couch for the last two weeks so that I can sleep with Vivian and listen to her breath all night. He has listened to me cry with worry over my baby. And above all else, he has continued to encourage me to trust God with all that is going on in our lives. No matter how hard it gets, I can always count on Tim to be right beside me through it all.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Prayers for Vivian

I wanted to ask you guys to be praying for Vivian. I took her to the pediatric pulmonologist yesterday and she doesn't have asthma. That is a huge praise! She does have reflux and they also suspect that she has obstructive sleep apnea. The dr said that her airway is blocked by her enlarged tonsils (partly due to reflux) so when she sleeps, she has trouble breathing. That may be causing her to have seizures. We are going to do a sleep study at Children's and some more xrays to find out what is going on and how to treat it. She also seems to have developed allergies so she is congested and that seems to worsen the situation. Over the last two weeks the episodes have gotten much more frequent and Tim and I have gotten pretty good at recognizing when it's going to happen and we can help her. Unfortunately, the breathing treatments and the steroids aren't helping very much since it's an obstruction, so we just have to watch her until the sleep center has an appt for us. The dr told me to sleep sitting up with her, which is not an easy thing to do. She's also very tired and cranky during the day since she's not able to sleep well at night.

Overall, we are very thankful that she doesn't have asthma. The dr said that if she is having seizures, they most likely aren't neurologically driven. They are probably only happening because of the obstruction. So another huge praise there. We are going to have a rough few weeks but hopefully we will get some answers and a plan after the sleep study.

Thank you so much for your prayers

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Penny for your thoughts

Just some random thoughts for the evening.....

Go Dawgs!

I am planning on outlawing gum, playdough, all writing utensils and change at my house. I am tired of finding all of the above scattered, smeared, and hidden all over the house.

I do not have the time or energy to play with my puppy enough, so I am thinking of getting another one so that she will have a playmate.

My children once were a blessing to others, I am not sure what has happened. I am now "that woman" at the store who is hollering at her children and yanking them out from under the clothes racks.

I would love for the guy who told Tim once that our house was "hospital clean" to come over and see it right now.

We are VERY close to having no children in diapers for the first time in almost 6 years. I can't even believe it!!

Friday, September 4, 2009

Lots of fun!!

Mackenzie's first concert! TAYLOR SWIFT!!!
Sporting her tshirt

Taylor with her sparkly guitar
The concert was beyond awesome. Taylor came out into the audience and did a song just steps away from us. It really made Mackenzie's night.

Miss Vivian alone at the park with mama.
I think that's the first time that has ever happened. lol

I can always count on her to pose for me.


Monday, August 31, 2009

Do hard things

This is a book that Mackenzie has been doing in her Sunday school class at church. And this past Sat, Tim and a few other dads took a group of teenagers to the conference in AL. It sounded incredible. They issued a challenge to us as parents to not let our kids conform to the expectations of the world. We need to help them rise to our heavenly father's expectations. I read some of the book for the first time last night and I have to admit it's convicting to me. I want to be known to my girls as a mom who practices what I preach. So I am going to "Do Hard Things" with them. Check out this link.... DO HARD THINGS

Sunday, August 23, 2009


Last week I was helping Leah change out of her dance clothes. I said, "Let me help you take off your leotard." And she looked at me and said, "And then you will help Vivi with her vivitard?"

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Understanding the relationship between theology and real life

We went to an orientation for discipleship at our church last night. It is a 2-year program that the elders at the church put together. Two of the goals are to learn theology and to equip people to be able to use it in their every day life. It's not enough just to learn it. We need to be shown how to use and apply the truth. This is EXACTLY what Tim and I have been desiring for a long time. We have really needed direction and accountability. I am just so thankful that God directed us to this church and I am thankful for the hearts that the elders have for the body of Christ.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

First day of school!

Today is the day!

They both got right up when I woke them. Thankfully Tim made breakfast to help me out. We took our pictures and were on the way EARLY! I couldn't believe it. We got there early so we stopped in the church parking lot across the street to pray. We all had out teary moments and got ourselves together. When we got to the carpool line Mackenzie saw two friends she made this week at volleyball, so she was a little less nervous walking in with them. We pulled back around and parked so that I could walk Madi in. And I saw several other parents taking lots of pictures too. Madison walked right into her classroom just like she has done it her whole life. She got a little nervous so she wouldn't talk when we got there but she didn't cry. We stayed with her for a few minutes and then I asked her if she was ready for me to go and she nodded her head yes. I gave her one last hug and that was that.

I am praying that they have a wonderful first day! I will upload the pictures soon.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

A new chapter

This week begins a new chapter in our family.

One that will be exciting and busy. And is unlike the last few years of constant diaper changes and nap schedules. Times they are a changin'!!

Mackenzie will be in 7th grade. She is starting this year at a new school and (Lord willing) last school. She is doing volleyball and assisting on a Christian cheerleading squad.

Madison will starting Kindergarten. I feel like the year of K that we did at home has really prepared her for school. She's already reading so I think she will feel confident in her class. She is also going to be doing karate and and she really wants to play softball in the spring.

Leah will taking ballet, reading, music and art.

And miss Vivian is going to be taking ballet.

And mommy is going to be a professional chauffer.

It was hard to imagine when they were all so little, that this day would ever come. And I have been overwhelmed at how fast time has gone. I am so thankful that God has shown me this and helped me to see the need to just ENJOY them.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Too much of a good thing

We just bought a nice LARGE bottle of gain. This would be the mega concentrated, HE kind. It has the dispenser where you push the button and it comes out. Wellduring my "quiet time" today, Madison comes yelling telling me that something happened in the laundry room. I walk in to a room full of gain. It must have slipped off the washer and fell. Then it exploded all over the room. I am talking even on the ceiling. So I got all the towels that were waiting to be washed and cleaned up everything I could. Then I went on about my business of washing clothes. When Tim got home he got the shop vac and got up as much as he could. The problem is the sticky film that's now on the floor. Just when I think the excitement is over, I opened up the washer and realized that there was diaper in there. Thankfully since there's no agitator, it's not as bad as it could have been. But still not fun. And since the diaper spent a few days in the hamper, I also have mildewed clothes. No need for tv at our house!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

The last few weeks....

...have been interesting over here.

Let's see....

We got a dog. Vivian had her first ride in an ambulance. The police came to our house, twice in the same week.

The first time was because I thought someone snuck in while I was out walking Mercy. I had run home to quickly switch cars and walk Mercy, and when I did I heard a noise. And then more noises. So I was convinced that someone was in the house. I called Tim and he came home. He heard the same noises so we called the police. It was the most excitement they had had all week. B/C when they walked in the garage, they heard the "footsteps" too. Guns in hand, the whole nine. After a thorough search, the culprit was our door to the crawl space.

A few days later, someone who shall remain nameless, didn't shut the door after their mother instructed them to set the alarm. We were in a hurry to go to the vet and the alarm goes off. I was in the front with the Mercy who chose that very moment to run awya from me for the first time. I quickly round her and the girls up and get them in the van and turn the alarm off. We head towards the vet. I get a call from my mother-in-law telling me that the police are on the way to my house!! Yikes! So I turn around only to find the very same sheriff who had saved me from my door a few days earlier. Thankfully he is a nice guy and thought it was pretty funny.

Later that weekend, after coming home from church, we found a puppy in our back yard. It was really hot that day and we were worried about him. So we gave him some water, some food and put up a sign in the front of the house in case his owner was looking for him. In the meantime, we put the dog in our fence in the back b/c we have some big dogs that live near us and I didn't want the little guy to become a snack. Apparently he was not very appreciative. He came up on the porch. So Mackenzie and I put up a gate so that he would stay in the yard. Then he attempted to scale the gate and fell backwards all the way down the stairs. I thought for sure this dog was a goner. Oh no. This dog is invincible. Now the dog comes barreling up the stairs and clings on to the gate with all fours! Can you say psycho dog? He managed to slide himself around the gate (and the porch for that matter) and go through the top level of the porch. Then he found the dog door. Thankfully I was watching all this from inside and blocked the dog door before he was able to get in. At this point, the dog had worn out his welcome. So animal control came to pick him up and we hope he found a great family who likes to mountain climb.

Other than that we have had scarlet fever, a severe reaction to penicillin, a PRECIOUS tea party thrown by my sweet neighbor, a black widow on the playset, some of the hottest weather followed by wonderfully mild weather, Mackenzie was a helper at vbs, we dressed up like cows and got free meals at Chick-Fil-A, we have had an awesome time making our yard beautiful, we now have one daughter "legally" wearing makeup, Madi lost her first tooth, Mackenzie did art camp and a scrapbooking class and we are now wrapping up the summer with the stomach bug for 5 out of the 7 of us. Dog included, although the vet assured me that she didn't catch the stomach bug from us. It's more likely that she ate something that didn't agree with her. But vomit just the same. Thankfully it seems that everyone is on the mend and Madison and I are holding our breath until it's completely gone.

Oh yes and school starts in two weeks. Summer, what summer? :)

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Pampered Mercy



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Madi lost her first tooth!!!!

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Sunday, July 5, 2009

4th of July in the boondocks

First we were in the parade with our church band. We handed out bottled water and tracks to the crowd.

The band

After the firetrucks came and put out the fire, we hung out with friends until the show started. Then we watched fireworks. Never a dull moment. We had a fire in the woods before the show.
Vivian and Tyler checking out why her shoe was hurting her. :)
Watching the little kids in the back of the truck
Vivian waving a flag

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Some late father's day praise for the men in my life

My husband and best friend- I am so proud of this man. He is working so hard for this family. I don't know how he is able to even walk through the door after working in this miserable heat all day. But he does it with a smile on his face. He always has time to spend time with his girls and then helps with baths and dishes. He balances me out when I am stressed with my day to day and really helps me focus on what's really important. I love him soooooooo much!!

My daddy- I am extremely proud and grateful to have such a wonderful father. He truly is a role model and friend. I have watched his walk with Lord blossom so much over the last several years. He has been in the executive world for as long as I can remember. However, he was laid off in April from his job and he has taken on the role of "mister mom" since my step mom was the first to find a job. Now he is getting up at 5am to take my sister to swim practice, taking her to and from her job and more swim practice in the afternoons, spending time with my little brother, making a meal plan, shopping, cooking, cleaning, etc. All while sending resumes out.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

False alarm- no pox

No chicken pox. It is looking like this massive outbreak of red bumps is an allergic reaction to the first antibiotic this child has ever had. I am hopeful that within a couple of days, we will be back to the land of the living!

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Well, I spoke too soon!

It looks like after 2 weeks of scarlet fever, Vivian now has chicken pox. Add that to hubby working long hours and all weekend, cranky kids, oh and did I mention we got our puppy last night? Fun times over here!!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

All done!!

We are on day 8 of sickness and I really want to be done! I have cranky girls who don't sleep well, are itchy and choking and scaring their mama. I am all done!!

Through the years

All around 2 years old

(if you click it, it will open bigger)
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Thursday, June 11, 2009

Another baby in the house

That's right folks, another one.

We just can't help ourselves.

We love babies!!!

And since ours is no longer a baby........

We are getting this one!!

Meet our "new" Mercy. That's what Vivian calls her. :) Since our first Mercy was temporary, we are reusing the name. Mercy was born on May 1 and we will picking her up on June 26th. Mercy is pure bred Shih-tzu born to champion parents. http://cuteshihtzu.com/ She will be about 8-9 pounds fully grown. A tiny princess dog for our princess girls.

A few updates

-A couple of months ago, we got our first dog. Three weeks later, she bit Leah and had to return to the rescue. The whole family has been sad. She was a really sweet dog, just not good with kids.

-After two days of pee pee on the floor, the chair, the rug, Mackenzie, etc we have decided that Vivian is NOT ready for potty training. She knows when and where but doesn't connect that she has to stop and go. So we will wait a few months and try again.

- We have officially been accepted to a wonderful Christian school for the fall. Mackenzie will be in 7th grade and Madison will be in kindergarten. This is a HUGE answer to years of prayer about schooling. We are very excited and working through the summer for the girls to be ready. Mackenzie finished her 6th grade year well but the bar is raised now, so we are working on math and language arts through the summer to better prepare her for the workload next year. It's going to be a lot of work and a change for all of us. But we are so excited!

- We are still in the process of choosing a program for our adoption. Apparently when you already have multiple children, your options are limited. Please be praying with us that God would make clear to us the path that we should choose.

-We are loving our new church home. It is such a blessing to our family. We have found the love of the body of Christ like never before. The girls all enjoy their classes. Mackenzie has made friends there and has gotten involved with the a ministry for the teenagers that builds leadership skills. Tim and I are really enjoying the parenting class that we attend on Sun mornings. Very practical application for parents based on biblical principles. And most importantly, our pastor is faithfully commited to teaching the word of God.

-After a couple of years of rough roads with our business, things are going well. We are so thankful for God's provision in that area.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Where is my baby?

She is growing soooooo fast!!

She finally has enough hair for pig tails!

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My 30th birthday

Truth be told, I was a little hesitant about this birthday. Like all of a sudden I was going to turn into a pumpkin at midnight. But I am hapy to say that all is well and I am still me.

I went out to lunch with my oldest friend Harmony, while my other sweet friend, Amy, watched my girls. And I had such a great time. At the end of our lunch a sweet man who had been sitting near us came over and wished me a happy birthday. And he said, "I hope this is the best year ever!" Little did he know that I turned 30. haha

My sweet husband has been working so much over the last month or so. And yesterday was no exception. The poor man didn't get home until after 9 last night, and he felt so bad. But I am just so thankful that he has work to do!!

I have been really stuggling with my health over the last year and a half, and I can finally say that I am feeling better!! Praise God!! I think that the man at the restaurant was right, this is going to be the best year ever!

The birthday curse is over!

For the last two years, my birthday has been surrounded by terrible tragedies.

2007- The day that all of our landscaping equipment was stolen
2008- The day after the terrible tornado at my inlaws house

All day yesterday I was waiting to get a call that something bad happened, and it never came!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Your tax dollars at work

Here we are with 7 public school days left for Mackenzie.

Guess what they did on Monday?

A bus safety course

Enough said.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

A few funnies

A couple of days ago, Vivian was in a foul mood when she got up. So after a few min I put her back in her bed. I thought she was asleep and about 20 min later Leah and Madi were playing out in the hallway and I hear, "Guys!!! Hey Guys!!! I'm sweepin' in here!!"

We were outside today and Madi and Leah are chatting. Mind you, I am sitting next to the them.
Leah, "Madi, are we taking a bath tonight?"
Madi: "I don't know, ask mama."
Leah: "Mama, are we taking a bath tonight?"
Me: "Yes."
Leah (to Madi) "We are taking a bath tonight so we don't have to clean out our toes right now!"

I was holding Mercy like a baby the other day and Vivian was next to me. Vivi got right in my face and said, "Mama, let she go."

Who needs tv? :)

Thursday, April 9, 2009

We now own a bus

We got a E350, 15 passenger van. We got in it today at the dealer and Madison said, "Mama, it's just like an airplane!!" Hilarious.

Oh and it wont fit in the garage. :(

Thursday, April 2, 2009

God's Sovereignty

I am overwhelmed and humbled today. I am in awe of God's plan for His children. It's incredible to be able to look back at events and see how God was in those moments, directing our steps. He is faithful and true. His grace and mercy surpass anything imaginable. His peace will comfort those in mourning.

Deut 31:6 "Be strong and courageous, do not be afraid or tremble at them, for the LORD your God is the one who goes with you He will not fail you or forsake you."

Matt 5:4 "Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Our newest addition

Our first adoption is complete.

We'd like to introduce you to the newest member of our family........


We met Mercy today at a animal rescue event. I fell in love with her immediately. We had been looking for a dog all weekend and kept coming up empty handed. We needed a small dog but none of the rescues would give us a small puppy because of the kids. At our last stop today, we tried again to inquire about small puppies, but they were jumpy and just not what our family needs. The man turned my attention to Mercy, and I was hooked instantly. Even more importantly, Madison loved her. She is very afraid of dogs so we thought this would help her to get over the fear. Mercy is a 2-3 year old Corgi/Beagle mix. She has a great temperament and she's a small dog. She has had an owner but she was abandoned a few weeks ago after being rescued from the pound. Because she was in for the 2nd time, she was on the list to be put down. The great people from Dog Pack Rescue rescued her and have had her in their shelter for three weeks. She has had all of her shots, been micro-chipped and house broken. We are thrilled to be able to give her the home that she needs.

Mackenzie's new best friend!

Here she is after her long day

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Monday, March 16, 2009


We had a couple of firsts last week.

Madison got her first hair cut.

Really just a little trimming up in the back.

Mackenzie had hers cut too.

And my baby can swing on a big-girl swing!!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009


Here are some cute things we are have heard lately...

Vivian- "You talkin' me?!?!?"

Leah- (singing) "Guuuuummmmm, now is the time to worship!"

Madison- "Leah, please forgive me for saying that I didn't want to be your sister anymore."

Talk a good first impression!

We are applying Mackenzie and Madison to go to a private christian school next year. And last night they had an open house. So we decided that we would just take all the girls. No big deal right?

We go in and sit down in the assembly armed with snacks and drinks. Madison instantly started complaining. She was hungry, tired, etc. We of course, had to go potty several times because that's just how we roll. So finally the assembly starts and we are trying to listen to the presentation and Vivian starts getting antsy. So Tim took her back to the back. Then Madison starts saying her stomach hurt. So I sent her back to stand with Tim. Honestly, I was tired of listening to the complaining. A few min later, the headmaster came over and told me that I was needed in the hallway. So I walk out into the hallway and there is Madison sitting on the floor with a completely white face. She had thrown up in several spots down the hallway while trying to get to the bathroom. You know those times as a mom, where you wish the floor would swallow you up? Um yeah. So I take her in the bathroom while the headmaster calls the janitor team to come and clean up the mess. Madison felt much better, of course, and didn't want to leave. And I really wanted Mackenzie to be able to go on the tour. So I stayed out in the hallway with the littles while Tim went back into the assembly with Kenz. After a few min we went on a tour of the school. They split us up, so I took the little girls and Tim took Mackenzie. We went and looked at the gym, the tech center and the library. And Vivian talked and complained the entire time. I mean she literally DID NOT STOP TALKING!! So we finally make it down to the kindergarten room to look around and get a feel for what they do and Vivian wants out of the stroller. So I pick her up and she is soaking wet. Her diaper had leaked like never before. All over her and all over the stroller. And the best part was that she had eaten a chocolate cookie while we in the assembly and it was now pasted all over her pants and her stroller. You can imagine what it looked like. So I pull her to the back of the classroom to try to discreetly change her clothes, her diaper and clean up the stroller. All while she is documenting everything in her not-so-inside voice! Then Madison had to go potty again. I guess she just wanted to be able to say she had been in every potty in the building. I am sure they will be calling us soon.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Running the race

How well are we running the race?

Are we helping the weak and weary succeed in their christian walk? Are we helping each other stay away from sin?

Our sermons the last two weeks have been on this and have been very eye-opening. I wonder how many christians have been in a position where they need encouragement and love from fellow believers but are left to endure the trials alone.

Friday, March 6, 2009


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Sunday, March 1, 2009


We officially have our first imaginary friend.

Friday at lunch Madison announced that she now has a pretend friend named Yella. It's hysterical. Not really sure where the name came from but we were informed that Yella does not yell. She was 15 on Friday but when we went to pick the girls up from nana and papa's yesterday, we found out that Yella's birthday was yesterday and now she can drive. She is one of 5 siblings and she's the oldest. Apparently we are going to have to buy a bigger vehicle because now we don't have enough room in the car for everyone.

Monday, February 23, 2009

A whirlwind of a week

Last week was one of those weeks where you don't really take it all in until you're past it. My dad and brother came into town last Sunday morning for a visit with my grandmother. They were planning to stay two days. We met them down at my grandparents house around 10:30. My nanny was not having a good day. She was struggling to breathe and was very anxious. We had the girls with us, so Mackenzie went in to talk to her but we kept the littles out in the living room. They had all seen Nanny doing pretty well at Christmas, so we wanted that to be their lasting memory of her. Tim and I decided to take the girls and my brother out to lunch to get them out of the house. And by the time we got back, she was worse. At that point, Tim took all the kids home and left me there with my dad, aunt and grandfather. By this time, nanny was really struggling. So we made the decision to take her to the ER. When we got there, her oxygen level was around 70. They put her on 100% oxygen but she didn't want to keep the mask on. Within about an hour of being at the ER, they decided to give her atavan to relax her so that she could benefit from the oxygen. We continued to stay right by her side through all of this, telling her how much we loved her and we didn't want her to be afraid. At this point they moved her to a room where they could monitor her levels more thoroughly. Other members of our family began to show up to support her. Over the next few hours her levels continued to decline. During this time they told us that she could hear us so we sang to her and read her scripture. Around 7pm her levels had decreased so much that she had to be placed on a ventilator to breathe. She was then put in CCU for constant observation.

Over the next two days her condition continued to worsen. It was obvious that her life on earth was coming to an end. We continued to stay by her bedside and sing to her and read scripture. She loved God's word so I know that was a comfort to her.

On Tuesday night (Feb 17th) the dr gathered all of the family into a room and explained how grave the situation had become. There was no hope for an earthly recovery. We all supported my grandfather as he made the decision to go from the ventilator to comfort care. We all gathered in her room and held her hand as her spirit went to be with the Lord. It was the most beautiful passing I could imagine. She had her husband, her children and two of her grandchildren quoting Psalm 23 and singing Amazing Grace together. It was an overwhelming scene for me. We were all incredibly sad but the overwhelming emotion was joy that she was with Our Father. She passed away about 10:50pm. My dad and uncle high-fived over the end of the bed knowing at that VERY MOMENT, she was in the presence of God!! I am getting chill-bumps now even thinking about it.

The next few days were a blur of activity. Planning, phone calls, late nights, tears and laughter. The funeral was Friday. I was overcome when I walked in and saw how beautiful the church looked with all of the flowers. This was the church Nanny had attended for 30 years so it was very special to have the service there. I had two very sweet friends who came to help with the music. Our incredibly gifted friend, played the piano. And my sweet friend and neighbor blessed us with her beautiful voice. My grandparents heard my friend sing "This is the air I breathe" a few years back and just raved and raved over her. So it was really precious to have her sing that song at the service. She also sang harmony with me on "Come to Jesus." It was very important to me that I honor Nanny with a song. She was my musical inspiration and always supported my gift of music. It was a sad but joyous day. In the funeral procession was when Tim and I realized that six years ago, Jacob had been buried on the same day.

I know that the next days, weeks, months and years without my Nanny will be difficult for all of our family. Especially my grandfather. This June will mark 50 years of marriage for them. We know through this that God is near to the brokenhearted and will be our comfort. Romans 8:28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.

Psalm 23
(My Nanny's favorite Psalm)

1 The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not be in want.
2 He makes me lie down in green pastures,
he leads me beside quiet waters,

3 he restores my soul.
He guides me in paths of righteousness
for his name's sake.

4 Even though I walk
through the valley of the shadow of death, [a]
I will fear no evil,
for you are with me;
your rod and your staff,
they comfort me.

5 You prepare a table before me
in the presence of my enemies.
You anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.

6 Surely goodness and love will follow me
all the days of my life,
and I will dwell in the house of the LORD

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Happy Birthday to my son

Happy Birthday to my baby boy!!

We love you and we miss you so much. We rest in the peace of knowing that you are forever with our creator and savior, Jesus Christ.

Jacob Nathaniel

Monday, February 16, 2009

It is well with my soul

That is what I am praying tonight. My nanny is on her way to be with our maker tonight. The drs have said she will probably pass within 12 hours. She has been my rock my whole life. We love her and will miss her. But I can't keep myself from smiling knowing how much she loves the Lord and is about to be IN HIS PRESENCE!!!

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Happy Valentine's Day!!

We decided instead of doing the couple's thing this year, we would hang out with the girls. We had a party complete with heart-shaped pizza and fondue! It was great time.

One of our heart shaped Papa John's pizzas

YUMMO! They all loved having their own carnation at their seat We had strawberries, cherries and pretzels in our chocolate fondue
Showing off their movies

Posing again

Happy Valentine's Day!

Mackenzie is really growing up Leah took over the picture taking duties

And Madi took this last one