Monday, March 30, 2009

Lead Me

Tristin and Bell playing in the dirt. They look like this every time they play outside. There is a struggle that I face constantly. Every day from the time I wake up until the time I go to bed. It may not seem like that great of a struggle to everyone. It is no secret sin, nothing that I need to ask forgiveness for. I often do find myself crying out for help, guidance, direction and wisdom. The struggle I face daily is doing the absolute best job I can raising Godly kids. God has chosen to bless us with five lives to shape and mold. That is a huge responsibility. Adding to that is the responsibility of homeschooling them. It is one of the best gifts I can give them. But if I don't stay centered in Christ the overwhelming responsibility can consume me. I don't mean the work that I put into it or the time it takes each day. I mean the task of taking their education into my own hands and eventually sending them out into the world with the trust that we followed God's leading every step of the way. I don't live in fear that I am not doing a good enough job or that somehow we are wrecking our kids. I am doing my best and God covers everything else. My best means me actively seeking God's will and not mine. It means answering them with a pleasant tone when I want to snap back. It means showing them the unconditional love that my Heavenly Father shows me. It means extending them grace and then explaining to them the grace of God. It means showing love to my husband in front of them and not letting him "have it" when I want to loose my cool. It means teaching them to do their chores with a merry heart and not doing them for them because that is the easy way out. There is one facet that I continually struggle with though and that is discipline. Not the act of doing it but choosing the right discipline for the offense. As my children grow so do their offenses. When they were younger it was simple. I wholeheartedly believe in making each offense a learning lesson. To me that means that there is logic in my discipline. Some children in our house prove to be easier than others. They have reached an age at which they have started fighting. For weeks I have been praying for a consequence to hitting that makes sense. I am happy to report that God answers prayers. Last night my kids were playing and one of them got hurt. I was upstairs but clearly heard I hate you yelled out. I can not stand those words, especially when they are spoken over one of my kids. My first reaction was to put the offender to bed early while myself and the other child played the board game I had agreed to play with both of them. But again that is just a punishment not much teaching being done there. As I walked down the stairs ready to announce an early bedtime after an apology, the Holy Spirit reminded me that death and life are in the tongue. That talk is cheap (an apology) and powerful (I hate you). That while an apology is in order it takes more than that to restore a relationship. The Lord then gave me the answer to my prayer. It was simple, I don't know why it never occurred to me before. After a heart felt apology the offender will have to show their love for the sibling that they hurt. They have to actively look for ways to show their love and sacrifice their time to serve the other person when they need help. I am calling it serving and showing. The one on the receiving end is not allowed to hint that they need help, the offender must be looking for ways to help. God truly is faithful to help us when seek Him. I am so thankful that he can see through all the junk that I bring to Him each day and still love enough to care about the deepest desires of my heart.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Our Story

When Chad and I met we "just knew" we were made for each other. He and a friend called me over to play cards at night. That was the first time we spent any time together. I came over and we played go fish, because that is all I knew how to play (being raised in church I obviously knew cards were of the devil). That night he walked me out to my car. After talking at the car for a loooong time we got in, only because it was cold. We decided that if we were in we should at least drive around (a favorite past time even now). We drove and we talked the night away. I dropped him off and went home early that morning only because I had a U of M game to work at. After that we inseparable. We started dating in September and got married in January. We already had a family because I had Kaitlynne. She loved Chad and even before we were married she asked if she could call him Dad. That March I went to the hospital because I was having severe pain in my stomach. Chad came from work to meet me there. The doctor said it was gull stones. Most likely caused because I was pregnant. We were completely thrilled. We wanted to start a family as soon as possible because Kait was already three. In November Tristin arrived. While I was pregnant we decided I should stay home to raise our kids. We knew it would mean some financial sacrifice but that was something we wanted to give our kids. While I was pregnant we started discussing homeschooling. We began trying almost immediately for another baby. I found out on Fathers Day that I was pregnant. About ten weeks later we miscarried. We tried again, same thing. Once more, same result. After three miscarriages in one year we decided that we were done. We were thankful for the two children we had and didn't want to go through that pain ever again. Then one night the Spirit of the Lord spoke very clearly to us and told us both that we were going to conceive and this time we would not miscarry. That is how we got our sweet Bell. God convicted us for telling Him we didn't want anymore kids. We always prayed for God to lead our lives and be in the center of His will. We thought we meant that prayer but deep down in our hearts we wanted to protect ourselves from any more baby heartbreak. After that we decided to let God decide the size of our family. Two more sweet babies later here we are. We are not sure if our family will grow anymore. I have a peace that we could be done and be in the center of God's will. God has not spoken directly to either one of us. I used to think that letting God determine your family size could only could mean not using birth control. Now I believe that God can speak to your heart and let you know when your family is complete. For the time being my answer to the most commonly asked question is we think we are done. With that being said as surrendered children of the Most High that is not up to us. If he leads us in a different direction we will follow.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009


Hudsyn and Chad playing under our desk. She crawled up under there with him while he was running some electrical. She's more than a bit of a Daddy's girl!!!
I know it's been a long time since I posted. I have been so busy that I have only got on the computer to check my bank account and the weather. I have been running on very little sleep and when I have a free minute I try to get a little rest.
Baby Greysen has been having a bit of a rough time. Many days he is very fussy. He throws up quite a bit, not just as in often but also amount. He didn't start that until he got sick a little less than two weeks ago. He caught what was originally a cold. It went from being a cold to RSV. He was almost gasping for air and although I didn't realize it at the time he was almost blue. We took him into the hospital two days after he was after he had seen his doctor. My dad's wife, Carlyn and I took him in. Since we went to the hospital that she works at (and once gave me a job at) I stayed and registered him and she took him back to see the doctor. I think by the time I got back there the doctor had already decided to admit him. He wanted to send him to Children's by ambulance which concerned me, that turned into fear when I found out that five nurses were coming to pick him up in case he needed to be intibated (not sure how you spell that). He did pretty well. Literally every medical care person that came to see him after he started getting better said that they were glad to see his color back and that he had really scared them. So now he is doing a lot better just a lot of throwing up and very hard and forceful coughing. Then the night we brought him back home Bell crawled in bed with us and was moaning and crying in pain. Chad gave her motrin and put her back to bed, she slept for a couple of hours and then got up crying again. He got up with her again and she was just inconsolable. I took her into the doctor and she had an upper respiratory infection, two ear infections, her asthma was acting up and she had tonsillitis. She got an antibiotic and is feeling much better. Did I forget to mention that somewhere in there my van broke down. We took it in but couldn't pick it up before our trip to Children's. It all worked out fine, just a hassle. By the way I wanted to say a huge thank you to Carlyn and her Mom. Carlyn took off work to help with baby Grey and the kids so that Chad could come down to the hospital with me and baby Grey. Her Mom, Sandy came in the mornings and watched all four kids still at home, did my dishes and straightened up. She stayed until Carlyn got home from work and took over. I can't thank them enough.
Adjusting to life with five kids is been a bit of a challenge. I think it is more the closeness in age of the last three than the amount of kids. There is 15 months between the girls and 16 between Hudsyn and Greysen. I didn't have a difficult time with Bell when we brought Hudsyn home. She was so laid back and always waited while I fed and diapered Hudsyn. Hudsyn has a very different personality than Bell. Bell is very emotional and temperamental but sweet and easy going. Hudsyn is temperamental and sweet but not even slightly close to easy going. She reminds me of Tristin when he was that age. You couldn't possibly have enough hands to handle her. It takes me and someone else to watch her in our childproofed living room. She climbs on everything tries to climb over the couch and onto the swing with baby Grey in it before she gets caught. We have been successful so far in keeping her away from him. She no longer tries to hit him in the head after she so sweetly rubs his head and smiles at me. As spastic as she is I would never change anything about her if I could. I know people say that but I really wouldn't, I adore her. She has the most amazing spirit and piercing blue eyes and a smile that makes you smile too. Now Bell has hit her terrible two's and she is either having some sort of emotional melt down or hitting someone over the head with a blunt object. I wouldn't change anything about her either. I have the greatest kids, truly I do. I am blessed beyond anything I ever dreamed of. I love my kids and staying home with them. Life is very busy but I love it.
I am going to try really hard to post at least once a week. I want to be able to look back through my posts and remember what life was like for us right now. So if I don't post you'll know that I am spending my nights walking across the floor trying to soothe a fussy baby. Whom by the way is also absolutely perfect!