Sunday, January 29, 2012


Eight years have flown by!  Josie had a wonderful birthday.  It is amazing watching her become... whatever it is that God wants her to be.


Friday, January 20, 2012

Fingerprint Friday...

I haven't participated in Fingerprint Friday forever.  Finally, I am!

There is a song by Steven Curtis Chapman that says:
I can see the fingerprints of god
When I look at you
I can see the fingerprints of god
And I know its true
You're a masterpiece
That all creation quietly applauds
And you're covered with the fingerprints of god

So look around you and see where YOU can see God's fingerprints. Is it in nature? Kids? Animals? Where do you see them? Here's how to join in.

This morning as I wiped the toothpaste of the bathroom counter for the hundredth time, picked up toy food and dress up clothes for the thousandth time I realized that's my blessing.  As I sauteed onions for the crock pot and our french dip roast I realized that having a house smell like onion at 8am is a blessing.  As I said goodbye to Luke on his way out to the farm and looked ahead to a morning filled with folding laundry, washing sheets, wiping Sarah's runny nose I was pushed.  Those are my blessings.  This beautiful mess.  Because this mess means a house filled with children.  This mess means a partner to share my life with.  That onion smell?  We never have to worry about our next meal.  We have actually been blessed with abundance.

God gives me so many blessings daily.  The laundry, cleaning, mothering, repetition.  It's His work.  I am blessed that He picked me to do it for Him.  He knew what I'd need before I even did!

My French Dip recipe (my friend Jill gave me this originally and I modified it to our tastes):

One chuck roast
4 cups water
6 tsp beef granules
1 small onion
3 tsp butter
3 tsp Worcestershire sauce
3 tsp mustard

Saute onions in butter until the get translucent and start to caramelize.  Mix beef broth into water.  Whisk in Worcestershire and mustard.  Place roast in slow cooker.  Cover with cooked onions, pour beef broth mixture over top.  Cook on low (8-10 hours).
We like it on hoagie rolls with provolone and of course that yummy broth!  I usually serve this with green beans or broccoli/cauliflower mix but it's good with just about anything.  If you wanted to get fancy I suppose you could serve it like pot roast with mashed potatoes and make a gravy out of the broth.  I don't know about you but by January we are all a little tired of pot roast at our house!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012


Anxiety sucks.  Worrying is a waste of time.  So  easy to say.  Unless your worry is justified.  We noticed Marie was not hitting milestones when she was about five months old.  At six months our family doctor confirmed it and at eight months we were told to take her home and love her.

So until Eva hits six months I know I am going to worry.  I will actually worry until she turns one.  No, that is a lie.  I will always worry.  When she's two and stumbles I will ask if she's just being clumsy or is it something else.  When she's seven and going through a string of sleepless nights I will pray it's just part of growing up and not a sign of something.  I will worry about her hitting milestones, gaining weight, nursing well.  I will second guess everything.  Because it is my job.  Because I love them so much.  Because I am terrified.  
Since our sweet Marie and all she had to go through I don't just have a fussy baby.  I have "what if".  I worry at every cold, every time that maybe she's teething.  Is this crying a sign?  Is she holding her head well enough?
And with Eva I am for the most part reassured.  She is a very good eater.  She is strong and according to her family doctor she is doing great hitting those milestones (we check in once a month).  She is sensitive, she has a terrible temper, she gets overwhelmed and she cries and cries.  But she sleeps through the night every night.  She's huge.  She just started chuckling when we tickle her.  She has a favorite toy, a pink sock money.  She like Daddy, loves me and doesn't dig strangers.  She is really becoming a little person.
Still, that worry is there.  That cold blanket that settles over my heart and lets the blackness creep in.  What if?  We'll deal with it.  But having babies is different after you've buried one.  My heart breaks missing my Princess Marie, my heart aches at the idea of watching another child go through what she did.  And she did it smiling, she didn't know any different.  That kills me.  Kills me that I couldn't save her.  Couldn't stop it.  All I could do was cram as much love into the time I had as possible and let God do the rest.

I try to pray but the truth is that when you are anxious you forget to pray.  I cry, and I know that the Spirit hears my pleas.  The Spirit intercedes on my behalf and I am blessed by a loving Father who gave me the strength I needed to care for Marie.  Then He brought her back to Him when it was time.  He is in control of all this life that feels like chaos and I need to trust Him.  But I'm a control freak and I am a mama bear and they are my babies and once one of them got sick and I am terrified that it could happen all over.

I just don't think I can do it again.  And the worry creeps in and my heart aches cold.  I fight for light and sanity and pray, but the worry still lurks frightening in the shadows. 
She's three months old now and doing well, we're getting there.  I love Miss Eva so much...  I love all of them so much.
Photobucket Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words.  And he who searches hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.  Romans 8:26-27

Monday, January 16, 2012

Valentines is coming...

I get really excited about Valentines Day.  I like the idea of doing something special just because you love someone.  It also gives me an excuse to spoil my girls.

This year I am planning to make them these:

As far as I can tell it's just pillowcases sewn together.  There aren't any instructions.  All I have to go on is the photo.  Don't they look fun?  I am thinking for movie watching, for camping, for slumber parties.

And to make it even better this is what I found to make them with:

For Josie.
Source: via Shannon on Pinteres

For Sarah.

You need five and there's two cases to a set so I'm going to do two sets (4 animal print) and one hot pink one.  Total cost for this will be about $125.  About $74 for the pillowcases and then $50 for pillows (we don't have any extras).  It sounds a little pricey but I'm hoping that we will get our money back in use for these.  We don't have any loungy furniture or bean bags or anything.  I am hoping they last for years.  Also, because I should be able to slide the pillows out and wash the cases that should help to keep them nice.

I cannot believe in a few days I will have an eight year old.  Josie is turning 8 on the 27th.


Tuesday, January 10, 2012

New year, new me.

It is 2012.  Hard to believe.  Time is passing so quickly and for me the last years have been something I've fought.  It has been a time of healing, learning, and struggling.

I am a fighter.  I don't like change.  When Marie went home I fought hard.  I fought the reality that my daughter was in Heaven.  I fought the passage of time.  I thought that if I could keep things from changing it would bring Marie close.

After Rie went Home it took me a year to cut my hair.  Because she held my hair as she'd fall asleep.  I resisted cutting those strands as long as I could.  I refused to rearrange our furniture.  I made sure that every day when I got dressed I wore something that I had owned when she was with us.  I remembered what nail polishes I had used on her, what I had been wearing and I stuck to those colors.  Somehow I needed not to change.

Then I began to slowly realize that by not changing little things it wasn't keeping her close.  I was told Marie being in Heaven is like Josie being in school all day.  I have to learn to let go.  It does not mean I love her any less.  It took a long time to learn this.

Slowly I began.  I cut my hair.  I bought new nail polishes and used them.  I made myself stop stressing about what I was wearing (what little girl really cares about her mothers clothes that much anyway?  Well, Josie cares very much what I wear but she is nearly eight not a toddler.)  I moved our bedroom furniture, Josie's bedroom furniture, Sarah's bedroom furniture.  Part of this was forced, we were getting ready to welcome a baby.  It was a blessing, I was learning to embrace the change.

Right before Thanksgiving I made a big step.  I moved our living room and the pictures on the wall around.  The couch is now in a different place than it was when I would rock Marie to sleep every night.  Do you know what?  I remember doing it just as well even though the couch moved.  I didn't loose anything by making that change.  After Thanksgiving I made another big step.  I changed my hair.  I cut some bangs, embraced my curls.

I am getting there.  It has taken me more than two years to be able to do this.  No one tells you that.  No one tells you the odd little things that you will do when you have a child in Heaven.  The rituals that you put yourself through.  No one tells you how healing is weird.

This is a new year.  I am a new me.  I am okay with being a different person than I was when Marie was with us.  I look back at myself and I was so happy despite the worry in my heart.  Marie flew Home when God called and I started a journey.  I have been through the valley.  Sorrow is heavy and I've carried that.  I've learned, I've gotten stronger in different ways.  I see the world differently now.  I am still happy, even with sorrow in my heart.

This year I'm going to embrace me.  Who I am now.  It's okay.  Little Mama wouldn't expect me to be the same person I was two years ago.  She loves me no matter what, and I love her no matter what.  No matter what little changes take place.  It took a long time to learn that.

If I could tell myself two years ago.  That shell shocked mother with a newborn in her arms and a heartbroken five year old.  That broken woman who had no idea what to do or how to put it back together.  I would tell myself of two years ago that it was going to be okay.  Sorrow is weird and I'm still getting through.  But I'm going to be okay, I'm going to change and it won't mean letting go of Marie.

New year... new me.  Blessed. 

Philippians 4:13 ESV
I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.