Welcome

Thank you so much for taking the time to visit our family blog. This may be your first visit here, or you may be a friend from across the globe, or family that we have just seen. Who ever you may be, thanks for taking the time to read about our little family, and all we are learning on this adventure the Lord has called us to live! Here you will find, the random thoughts, funny stories, prayer requests, and the journey our family and Jack is on with his battle with Leukemia.

2 years old!!!

My sweet boys turns 2 today! The time has flown by, and he is no longer a baby, but a little boy... He brings us so much joy, with his funny ways and delightful giggle. I cannot begin to imagine our life without him in it.


Tyler at the hospital- a few days old...



Hard to believe that two years ago, I was at the hospital hours away from meeting our first baby boy... and now, today, we are playing with play doh and singing songs. How the time flies.

Tyler at Mimi's house a few days ago...


We love him more and more each passing day- even on the tough days! It is funny the things that make your heart melt... his sweet face when he is kissing his baby brother, his little chubby hands, the way he calls my name in the morning... the way he runs, to the way he laughs... he is a treasure and we are so grateful!

Happy birthday my Big Boy!


More Than I Deserve...

Again, I am being made aware of how I deserve so little and have been given so very much. Christmas Eve service was such a fresh reminder of why we celebrate this holiday season. We are rich indeed, being heir with the Savior. Gratefulness fills my heart today.

This Christmas day is no exception to the fact that I have been given MUCH more than I deserve... my family lavishly blessed us with a new computer! Our current computer has only 40G of memory total, so you can imagine with all the photos we have taken over the past two years, that memory is getting slim! We cannot believe how generous they are, and are so grateful for this gift. That was more than enough for us... Christmas should have ended there!

But then my husband surprised me with a new camera!!! Yup- I get to join those who have a Nikon D40. What a blessing and surprise. He knows how much I love to take pictures, and we have two adorable subjects to capture. I cannot believe it! He is so generous and has worked so hard to give me such a wonderful gift.

To make the camera even better, I was given a 18-135 mm lens this morning.... another undeserved gift! Hopefully I will learn to use it quickly and have many wonderful photos to share.


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The day should have ended there... I already had been given much more than I ever thought or deserved. We shared gifts with family, got to see tears of joy and gratefulness.... the day had been pretty much perfect. Even with a tantrum or two from Tyler, the day has been amazing, and with the gospel in view, has been even better than I ever thought!

But wait... there is more.... The last gifts were being given... and all of a sudden I was handed a small box with my name on it, but no indication as to whom it was from... inside was the greatest surprise of all.... keys to a 2005....


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Holy Cow, right??? What in the world....?!?!?!!? I still cannot believe it. Jordan found it last Thursday... it is everything we had wanted, and he got a deal from one of the dealerships he works at. When I opened the box, my heart stopped. I just could not believe it! What a blessing. I am undone. My husband... oh what a man he is, what a generous hard working man. I do not deserve such love and generosity.


So, I say all of this, not to boast in the blessings of the day, but to point back to our wonderful savior and King, who gives so much more than we deserve, starting with the gift of our salvation. All of the amazing things I have been given this holiday season, pale in comparison to the riches I have in Christ. I pray that today, you are able to say the same, as you reflect on his goodness to you.

Weakness

The past few days have been "one of those days"... you know the kind, where you are made a little more aware of how completely weak and helpless you truly are. In the midst of trials, I find that God has been ever faithful to lavish grace on me, and I am so grateful for these moments, as they are teaching me so much. The following tales, have been filled with moments of temptation, weakness, weariness, but also marked by laughter and grace.... God is good to teach with a gentle hand...

The past 4 weeks had been actually going very well, things were going quite smooth- two kids- home alone- not too bad ... perfect set up for me to learn a lesson and grow in my faith. Day one of the week of tantrums started with a rough going nap time.. Tyler fell asleep in the car on the way to Sam's club, and I had to wake him up for our little shopping trip. Once we got home, he didn't want to nap... after an hour of tears (his not mine) a diaper change, and some songs, he finally obeyed and closed his tired eyes and went to sleep. This ended with the sounds of my hungry baby filling the house, letting me know it was definitely time to eat! I nursed Jack, with hopes of taking a nap afterwards... it had been a long night of little sleep for me the night before, so I was pretty tired already.... I put Jack down and lay down eager for a few morsels of precious rest...

15 minutes after falling into a deep sleep- which immediately followed my head making contact with the pillow... I hear Tyler crying, and then an instant later, Jack started to cry.... and thus the madness began! Both boys were crying furiously... and inconsolably...

Tyler heard Jack crying and freaked out- toddler tantrum all the way- complete with kicking and screaming and throwing himself around- so I put Jack on our bed, and call Jordan for help/wisdom/prayers... I just felt so weak and utterly helpless. It took a good hour to calm Tyler down and get him to obey- meanwhile, poor baby boy cried in our room the entire time.

So a very similar scene has transpired at least once a day since that first episode... it is just so hard to know how to correct a screaming toddler when you have a baby attached to your breast! God has been kind to help me to laugh at the situations that I really cannot do anything about and to respond with joy. None the less, we have tried and are, by God's grace alone, committed to training our big boy. After seeking some counsel, we feel better equipped to deal with the task at hand...

I am seeing my need to be gracious and kind. To learn to be quick to respond in love and not anger, and to see my son's sins primarily against the Lord and not me. I am learning that even on a few hours of sleep, God WILL sustain me, and that is building my faith more and more. The nice thing about having only one child was, you can nap when they nap... add more kids to the mix, and naps become a precious gift and not a guarantee!! How kind of the Lord to show me that I, a wretch, deserve nothing.... and yet, he carries me and covers me with his wings.

This all may sound a bit fragmented... as my mind is has kind of not been working as well, since little baby Jack came into the world!!! Just my thoughts, as foggy as they are...

Oh, but how much I love these boys... I praise God for filling my heart with love and tenderness to these little lovely sinners... Isn't it amazing that I, the worst of all sinners have been given a heart of love for such sweet boys...

Birth Announcements!

I have been wanting to post for a little while now, but between naps, a crazy toddler, and a nursing baby, I have had little time.... well, the free time I do have is being filled with finishing up Christmas shopping, wrapping gifts, and trying to keep the house in order!

I have many pictures and some funny stories to tell, but no time! So today, I wanted to post our birth announcements, and let the loyal few readers know that we are indeed still alive!! I would have mailed one to all of our friends, but stamps are expensive! Below are the front and the back, courtesy of the gifted photography and design work at Perceive Design.

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Magic Moments

My sister-in-law, Megan, took some photos of Jack, last week, celebrating his 1 week old b-day!

Here are just a few of them, there were so many wonderful ones to choose from. She did a fabulous job! I wish we had these kinds of pictures of Tyler too! If you just had a baby, I would highly suggest you have her take some pictures to capture the first weeks of sweetness. They pass too quickly!




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A week already!!!!

Hard to believe a week ago we were at the hospital having this little baby! Goad has been so kind to us this week, as we have begun to make the adjustment from one child to two. I have been snapping away, trying to capture sweet moments.... a friend of mine said to me, "New life is so amazing isn't it?" I couldn't agree more!

Special visit from Hemi and Siena!

Lots of time spent in mommy and daddy's arms... I love this stage when they are just a big ball of baby!

First bath at home. He didn't like it too much, until I washed his hair!


Daddy reading to his two boys...

Notice Tyler's concerned look... he still doesn't know what to make of Jack's little cry.

Shaggy, pre-hair cut!!! I didn't realize how long it had gotten until I saw this picture!

Pre- cry face...
Sweet little angle baby...

My parents came for a visit...

Tyler seems so massive to me now. Every time I change his diaper, I think, man... he is too big to be wearing diapers!!! What seemed so little to me a week ago, is just so big! But he sure is one cute little big boy!

We are having fun getting to know our new little one, and experiencing so much grace. I am recovering so well, and could not ask for a better baby. He has put himself on a schedule, without much work on my part, and Tyler seems to be adjusting well. By God's grace, I am also doing better than I expected on just a few hours sleep!!! God is so good!

A boy named Jack

Wow, so where to begin.... so this is our son Jackson Chase... isn't he cute?


So, we took a lot of photos of the day/weekend... Here is the day in a nutshell.. with photos to capture what it was all like! We called the hospital at 8 am to make sure they had a room for me, and were given the green light to come! Tyler was already at my parents house- we left him there the night before. We realized we needed to drop off a movie at Blockbuster, and grab something to eat, so by the time we got to the hospital, it was 9:30... ooopps!


We got the last room open too! We got checked in, waited in the waiting room for a little, and finally got taken to our room, by the best nurse Karen. Room #3! So they hooked me up to the heartbeat monitor, and contraction monitor. Our room seemed to be missing a lot of supplies, so getting everything in place took a while. We also had a broken contraction monitor, so after 45 minutes of them recording nothing, we got one that worked! At this point it was almost 11.


Once the monitor was in place, my contractions (which I had been having irregularly for a while) were 7 minutes apart. The nurse informed the Dr. and they finally began the Pitocin at 12:10 pm. That is when they say "labor" officially began. I was 3 cm and 70% at this point. So we waited for it to kick in, hung around, and waited.... around 2 pm, things picked up. My contractions were about 5 minutes apart. Dr. Apgar's wife, who is also an OBGYN, was on and came in and broke my water around 2:30. I was also 4 cm and still 70%. About an hour later, my contractions were 1-2 minutes apart and had gotten really strong. Jordan lovingly told me it was time to get the epidural... and by that point, I agreed!
I got the epidural between contractions at 3:40 pm. It was great at first, but then something wasn't quite working, and I began to have major back pain and severe contractions. They called in another anesthesiologist, who discovered that my tubing had a kink in it somewhere under all the tape on my back... so finally after a hard hour, my epidural was working great! Pain free by 4:30! But then, I got the shakes real bad... which was kind of funny. My hands would just start shaking, like I had been outside in the cold for hours!

So the next 30 minutes passed, and the shakes kind of passed... and the nurse came in to check my progress, and was shocked to find that I was 100% effaced... she said she thought that I would progress very quickly at that point... if only my Dr. had listened to her!


Yep- that is me at 10 cm!!! I started feeling a ton of pressure soon after the nurse checked me at 5pm. Each contraction I had, the pressure grew tremendously. So when we told the nurse at 5:30, and she checked me again, I was at 10 cm and the baby was at 0 station... She had me do a round of pushes, to see how things would go, and he descended to +2 station... she made me stop because we were ready to go! Except, the Dr. was still at home in Damascus with his 18 month old daughter!

The nurse told the Dr. Apgar (the Mrs. 9of my OB) and she called Dr. Apgar (my OB) to get in the car now! It wasn't until 6:12 that he walked in! I tell you, that 45 minutes was agonizing! Everything in me wanted to push that baby out! Jordan had to coach me through each contraction again, to keep me from pushing! Once the Dr. got there, it was pushing time. Almost 20 minutes later he was out! He weighed 8lbs 2 ounces, and was 21.5 inches long. Yep, we have big babies!



But what would a delivery of mine be, without some minor complications?? The umbilical cord was wrapped around his neck. So once his head was out, I had to stop again, while the Dr. cut it. He was quite blue in the face when he came out...


So everyone thinks he looked so much like Jordan when he was born. These are both taken moments after delivery...


Unlike Tyler's birth, I was able to hold and nurse Jack right away. It was an answer to my prayers. God was so faithful to me!



Some new things they are doing at Shady Grove, is washing the baby in the L&D room with the mom there. They do not have a nursery anymore, so the baby stays with the mom pretty much the whole time. It was certainly different than with Tyler, who spent most of the time in the NICU. So this was his first bath...

At last, we made it to our new beautiful, private room... quiet and calm...


The next day we had several special visitors... my first big boy...

Grandma and Grandpa came... Tyler gave some kisses...

Girlie, Ethan and Megan came. They brought us gifts and were so cute holding Jack...

Baby Shrek was from Uncle Kerrin... he thought Jack and Baby Shrek looked a lot alike...


My Abba came...
Sister Shelly... the proud aunt...

Judy- my abba's wife...

Bob, Julie and Kenzi came too, but I didn't get to take any pictures! Sunday morning, we were ready to go! I didn't sleep much the two nights there, so we were eager to get home. Once we got the boy in his car seat, cleared to go, it was a sigh of relief that we could leave, we headed home! Good-bye wonderful private room.... I enjoyed the blessing it was very much!

Ready to go at last!

This was just such a sweet moment for me... we had to leave Tyler in the NICU for three days after I had been discharged... so it was just so happy a moment to be able to walk out the door with my baby!

Home at last!
On a conclusion note, my recovery has been so much better than the first time. I am tired, and achy, but feeling good. Jack seems to have his day and nights confused, so sleeping at night has been elusive, but hopefully that will iron out in the next few weeks. Tyler has been funny... getting used to life with baby and boy... we will see what happens as he adjusts to this new addition. God was and continues to be lavish in the grace and mercies he pours out on us!

Thank you again for the prayers! I have many new pictures to post, just haven't loaded them up yet! Give us a few days and we will get some new ones up!