Saturday, April 25, 2015

The Rescuer

With final exams coming in less than a week, a messy house, and nothing packed or prepared for NJ, what better time than to take my messy messy thoughts and attempt to put them on the blog? After all, as my good friend Donnie says, "why do today what you can put off until tomorrow?" 

Why indeed? 

This week has been all about the countdown. Owen cried in my lap this morning about having to leave in a week and how Emma Grace and Isaac can't come with him. So I did what every good parent does and tried to put a positive spin on a five week hospital stay far away from everything he holds dear.

The tricks I pulled out of my bag?

-but Aunt Sarah Ellen is coming the same day we are!!
-there will be an indoor pool!!
-you'll get to ride in your new stroller a lot!
-there's a lake there! Remember when you played in the lake?!

To which he replied, 
"there's a lake here too, Mom."

Touche son.

It's hard to turn a crappy situation into rainbows with a child who sees everything as black and white. He is not easily snowed.

But he is excited and in love with his new stroller. He tells anyone who will listen about it. He loves loves loves it and wanted to ride in it in Target the other night. Target. It is highly possible that we have created a monster.

The older two are adjusting to the impending separation. There have been some tears this week, but my hope is that they will be so busy with school and friends that they won't even notice we're gone? Sounds reasonable, right? And we're also spoiling them in an attempt to assuage any fears. After dinner the other night, they asked to split a milkshake? Yes kids, suck down that sugary treat. And next week when you're bummed that Mom and Owen are gone? You best remember.........we let you have that milkshake.

Parenting at its finest.

Speaking of parenting at its finest, my dad sent me this sermon this week. And wow. It was all about trying to see Jesus. And this part really resonated with me:

Sixth, if “we want to see Jesus,” there is
suffering involved. I hate that.
The second part of the Table shows us
suffering. The cup is his blood, and
blood is pain, blood is suffering, blood is
And that's WHERE HE IS, where people
suffer. So that's where we have to go to
see him. Didn't he say, if you fed the
hungry, visited the sick, it was doing
those things to him? So if we avoid the
sick, avoid the hungry, then WHOM are
we avoiding?
How will we see him if we don't want to
go where he goes?
If any man wants to come after me,
let him deny himself, take up his
cross and follow me.
That is where he went after the cup -- to
the cross. A disciple is not above his

Ugh. Couldn't we just go to church?

Some of you are almost laughing, except
it isn't funny. Here I am talking about
"if" suffering is involved, and whether we
want to go there or not, and you're
already THERE.
You’re LIVING there, in suffering that is,
and you WISH TO GOD that you could
live somewhere else. It's not a theory.
You're hurting now.
Debilitating illness, the ravages of age,
unfair death of a loved one, emotional
pain, injustice all around you. Lost your 
job, lost your house. You are hurting
now, you don't understand, and it's not
fair, and it's not SUPPOSED to be this
There is good news and strange news.
Through the suffering of Christ came
forgiveness of sins. If we suffer along
with him, if our suffering is like this, 
what does that mean?
We want to give you Jesus, not hell.
I am sure some of you have more than a
taste of hell in this life.
We believe Jesus rescues us. From the
hell of this world, and the next.
Rescue. "It's what he does, and it's all
he does, and he will not stop." 
-Mike Tucker

Sometimes it's easy to get caught up in our own suffering and forget that there was someone out there who suffered far greater than we do. Someone who suffered so that ultimately, at the end of this life, our suffering can end.  We may have "lost" our house, we may have illness, we may have to work hard at our marriage in these trying times, we may have to try to explain hard things to young children, but if all this brings us closer to seeing Him? To seeing his miracles? To being a part of his rescue?

Well dang.
That makes me pretty grateful.

Thanks Dad for the much needed reminder.

After all, "life is like a box of chocolates.

You never know what you're gonna get?"

But we do know one thing.

We can be confident of one thing:

"Rescue. It's what he does, and it's all he does, and he will not stop."

So as we pack our bags and prepare for change, we can take hope with us. Hope that through it all, we will see Jesus. We'll pack that hope right in the suitcase and carry it with us and pull it out when the going gets tough. And if we lose that hope or forget about it or leave it zipped up in the suitcase, I'm sure our friends will remind us that it is there. It exists.

Because our friends and our family are awesome like that.

So basically, what I'm trying to say in my messy jumbled up brain is this:

Life is messy.
Owen loves his stroller.
The bigs are adjusting.
We have good friends.
We have awesome parents.
We have each other.
We have Jesus.

What more could you need?

The End.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

New Wheels

I ordered some new wheels today.

Don't get too excited. 

Unfortunately they're not for me or Todd.....

They're for Owen.

After much research, and multiple times where we're in public places and he is overwhelmed by the crowd and wants to be carried, we decided to bite the bullet and purchase a special needs stroller. 

This is not a cheap decision and we are SO SO SO SO SO blessed to be able to use money raised by friends to make this purchase. So blessed. And awed. And amazed. And humbled. And excited about what this means for our family.

There was part of me that was scared I would have to talk him into it because he's bigger now and "strollers are for babies." Well apparently that's my own insecurity. I'm 100% sure I will be self conscious that people will judge me and my six year old in the stroller, but I'll have to get over it because I just showed him this picture and he was so excited!! Apparently he knows he gets overwhelmed and tires easily and he likes being strapped in and feeling secure. Oh, and he wants a sun shade on it. So back to amazon I go, because if he will ride in this better with a sun shade and save my arms and back, it will be money well spent.

So look out, New Jersey.

Here we come, in T-2 weeks and 3 days, rocking our new wheels yo.


 The countdown has begun.

PS - if you are a special needs family and want to know how the stroller works out, message me, and I'll give feedback in a few weeks. (Reading reviews really helped me!)

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Ain't Nobody Got Time for that Bunny

Sometimes life (and holidays) just aren't what you think they will be. Easter 2015 was definitely one of those times. I had visions of family pics in our new house, somewhat matching and decent outfits, Easter baskets filled with candies, treats and, something special for each kid, etc. You know - the works - because when somebody dies for your sins and then they rise from the dead, it's kind of a big deal.

Instead of an awesome celebration, our Easter looked like this:

Literally, I made nothing for Easter. Not one hard boiled egg or resurrection roll or special treat. The kids got one basket with nine eggs full of jelly beans  (so that's a whopping three eggs each) and they got a gift card. Lackluster to say the least. And when EG started crying because there was no ham in the oven when she got home from church and I told her the oven was empty like the tomb, she said, I probably shouldn't use that excuse anymore. Dang. Harsh. And just FYI, we had ham the next night because I'm a bad mom, but I'm not THAT bad. A late celebration is better than no celebration, right?

And I didn't get any pics or input into their clothing because I was still asleep with Owen when they left for church. When a friend dropped the older two back home, well, let's just say.......their outfits were interesting. Isaac wore a black and red striped flannel shirt, and EG had on a black dress with hot pink running tights and winter fur lined boots. And Sister definitely did not brush her hair. Like at all.

Yup. Life with Owen oft throws a kink in our plans and we got no choice but to roll with it. Dude was one sick little boy and we're so glad he's feeling better now and actually went back to school today. And I vow to maybe/hopefully do better next year? Like maybe I'll lay out their clothes the night before and put a flashing neon sign in the bathroom that says BRUSH YOUR FREAKING HAIR!?

Anywho -

before stomach viruses and flannel/fur lined lackluster Easter celebrations - we did a little something called moving. And painting.

I painted the crizzap out of our little town home and I'm obsessed with my kitchen color.

I could stare at it all day long.

And the kids were troopers when I dragged them to the paint store over and over and over and over and over and over again. The samples were $1. We ended up with 15 samples and 7 gallons and my picture was posted outside the store asking me not to enter and bug Earl the Paint Guy. Again. EVER.

So we're settling in to our new home and making new lackluster memories that include, but are not limited to, climbing walls to try to make Owen smile.

And even though I didn't go to church on Easter Sunday, I'm still rocking my new Jesus shirt that a friend gave me:

 because it's true.

I do love Jesus.

And I do cuss a little a lot.