Friday, December 29, 2006

2006 Thankfulness Cont.

To continue my list of things I'm thankful for in 2006 is:
Number Two
I’m thankful for my baby girl, Isabelle Agnes. She has taken our lives to a whole other level. I love holding her and starring into her beautiful dark eyes looking, fully trusting and innocent, back at me.
I love to watch her as she grows and changes. I love the fact that she loves to be read to….at 4 months! I even love reading “Moo Baa La La La” over and over again and getting up in the middle of the night to feed her. I am amazed that I have the privilege of shaping this little life. I pray we can give 100% and more than anything else, I want her to grow up to have a heart like David. That’s all that really matters in the end. I am thankful that her presence in my life has reminded me of the plight of the lost children in the world. When I’m starring into her eyes I keep thinking, “somewhere in the world right now, a mother is looking into the beautiful eyes of her baby daughter and making the heartbreaking decision to abandon her or worse…”

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

2006 Thankfulness

I decided I would take a few days and highlight some things I am thankful for in 2006. As you can guess from my blog, 2006 has been a year of real blessing and I can't stop thanking the Father for the good things in my life lately. So let me start with this:

Number One
I am thankful for Conrad, my husband. Having been a single adult for a decade has given me a great appreciation for marriage. I love being married. I love belonging to someone and having someone belong to me. I love Conrad for his faithfulness and gentleness. I love him because he’s easygoing and usually up for almost anything (excluding extreme sports!). I love him because he’s giving and full of compassion, and anyone in need is likely to be on the receiving end of his giving. I love him because he loves my family like his own. And when my Grandpa was sick, Conrad was there, with my dad, helping out, like it was his own grandfather. I love him because he’s the best daddy. He loves our little girl better than anything and his eyes light up when he sees her. And he works hard at caring for us and providing for us (oh ya, and he’s pretty good looking too!) I love you, honey!

...More to Come Tommorrow...

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Christmas In Review

Isabelle's first Christmas was great! We had a really good time with friends and family and Isabelle got lot's of thoughtful gifts! Unfortunatley she slept through almost every present opening and seemed mostly overstimulated the entire weekend...but I can't blame her, as, let's face it, who isn't after three or four days of Christmas Celebration!! Her favorite gift, I think, was the Baby Einstein play station that my parents got her. Of course, this also lended itself to overstimulization and she about freaked out after 5 or 6 minutes in it.:) Over all tho, I think she had a great time!

Friday, December 22, 2006

Big Brown Eyes

Right Now Isabelle is totally a momma's girl. She's happy when I pick her up and hold her, or when I read to her, or put her to sleep. Not even Conrad can put her to bed these days, only Momma can. I figure I'd better enjoy it now, because more sooner than later she will be utterly a Daddy's girl. It always happens! But when I'm feeding her or talking to her and she looks at me with those big brown eyes, my heart melts and I think I'd give her anything, up to half my kingdom! Can you blame me?

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

A Life of Grace

Today I was reading back through some old emails that I had labeled “keepers” and found one from a dear friend. She and I were interns at Teen Mania together and became fast friends because we were both from Ohio. We remained friends and visited one another throughout our college years. I even had the privilege of being in her wedding way back in 1997. A couple of years ago, her husband was taken from her and their two small children in a freak bicycle accident.

I remember seeing my friend at the funeral and being absolutely in awe of her strength and reliance on the Lord. And as I got deeper into my marriage, and reflected back on what it would mean to loose my husband and the father of my children, my admiration for her only grew. The email I found was called “reflections.” It was her thoughts and feelings on the one year anniversary of her. She wrote about what she missed most about her Love, what he meant to her life, how she felt when he died, and what she was thankful for. She also wrote the following:

This is what I have learned since my husbands death…
• Life can be short so don’t waste the moments I have right now. God, people and relationships are what matter most, so I need to spend my energy in the right way. Let people know how important they are to me. Share your feelings now.
• This world is not a fair world, so instead of asking why, ask why not me? I have received many blessing that I did not earn so why not accept the tragedies as well. It is not fair to say that I only accept the good in life and not the bad as well. If everything was fair I would never get what I don’t deserve and always get what I do deserve. I would rather live in a world filled with God’s grace than a completely fair world.
• I am not in control of my life. There is a randomness to life that is beyond my control.
• God gives us what we need to get through difficult times. He carries us when we can’t go on.
• I have realized that withdrawing from others means death to my soul. Choosing to live, love and give again means my heart will grow and that I will experience sorrow again. If you love much, you have much to loose. I can make a choice - life or death, it is up to me and no one else.
• Take life one day, one hour, one minute at a time. Set small goals that you can accomplish and eventually you have accomplished a lot.
• The best way to get through grief is to share your feeling with others. Talk about it. Journal about it. Schedule time to do it.
• When someone is sharing with me I can be a better listener by not trying to fix their pain, but by being interested in how they are feeling. Accepting their feelings and not trying to change them.
• Don’t waste the pain, be a better person because of it.
• Everybody grieves differently; there is no right or wrong way. Don’t compare myself with others.

And if my friend is reading this today, I wanted to let her know that her life has been an example. One day, when the rains fall on my life, I pray I can respond as Christ-like as you.

Monday, December 18, 2006

Baby's First Christmas

I can't believe that it is almost Christmas. We are ready on this end, and as far as I'm concerned it can't come soon enough! I know Isabelle is only four months old, so I'm sure we will have more fun opening her presents that she will! Christmas also came early for us, as Conrad got his Perminant Resident Card in the mail tonight! And it only took the government about a year and a half to process it! Whoo hoo!

Friday, December 15, 2006

All I want for Christmas...

All I want for Christmas...I already have. I am very thankful for all of the blessings in my life. Especially my amazing husband who is more than I ever asked God for. And for my beautiful daughter, who is perfect and sweet. These two are better gifts than I ever deserved. And I'm thankful that the Lord doesn't give us what we deserve!

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Why I’m A Blogging Slacker

I know I have been slacking on blogging lately. But don’t worry, I’m not a person prone to much guilt, so I haven’t been suffering from Blogging Guilt! I have however been getting calls and emails asking why I haven’t been posting. So I decided to tell you why:

1. It’s Christmas, and I have been baking cookies and wrapping presents. I like doing these things. ESPECIALLY when they are done in moderation. I hate doing things last minute and I don’t get WHY you have to have 17 different kinds of cookies every Christmas…WHY?
2. I have been shopping. I like to shop…but I don’t love to shop. And I despise malls at Christmas time. I will go to great lengths to avoid that crowded “dashing through the snow!” That’s why I love the internet. My favorite sites lately are (so cool!) and of course, gift cards are a beautiful thing. And this site might brighten your day:
On that same note, I will say that I have been hearing horror stories of being scammed. So I’ll tell you a lil’ story. We have been shopping for a digital camcorder. To make a long story short, we found a site that listed several hundred dollars lower on the camera we wanted. WITHOUT reading reviews (WHY we did this I’ll never know) we ordered. Found out that the camera didn’t come with cables, cords, or a battery….THAT would cost us hundreds more. At that point, I canceled our order, got hung up on the “customer service” guy, and THEN read reviews on this company. Scary scary reviews of credit cards being charged thousands of dollars from companies in Italy and Nigeria…what?? Needless to say, my internet shopping has been cut short while I canceled my credit card. So I feel obligated to say Buyers Beware:
3. I had a bad morning today. I usually leave early for work and leave Conrad and the baby sleeping soundly in the morning. This morning I went into the office with Conrad and we dropped Isabelle off at daycare. It was really hard to leave her there this morning. Maybe it was because I usually pick up, not drop off. Or maybe it was because her usual caregivers weren’t there. Or maybe it was because I laid her down in her crib and had to leave her giggling there alone. I don’t know why, it just made for a really bad morning. My husband is now ready to go to heroic lengths to make sure I am not the one taking her to daycare  I don’t think he can make it through another morning like today. And I am still praying for a job miracle. This one is okay, but eventually something will have to change. What? I don’t know.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Blast from the Past

Over the weekend, we went to visit my family. My grandparents just built a small house on the side of my parent's home. It's a cute little house but it required my grandma to downsize quite a bit and that required my expertise...throwing things away! Anyway, we ran across a box of old pictures and I thought I really had to post some of these for my family to see...and there are a few self discriminating pictures as well.

Yes indeed I was a cheerleader!

My mom and I, nice hair, huh?

And this is a singing group my whole family used to have called the Young Lites...classic. I'm related to almost everyone in this picture...maybe everyone?!

Monday, December 04, 2006

The Return of Tin Tin

Any of you who have traveled outside of the U.S. have run into the world renowned Tin Tin and his trusty side kick Snowy. One night I was trying to do something..anything with Isabelle's little tuft of hair and I resorted to what mothers all over the world resort to. Conrad came home from work and said, "She looks just like Tin Tin." So I had to take a picture.