Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Allow me to introduce Samuel James

Samuel James was born Tuesday,
October 28th at 7:03pm.
He weighs eight pounds and is 20 inches long.

Isaiah now has a brother. He is quite proud.

Rose is in love with Samuel. Every little gesture, sound, and gurgle brings her delight.

Lela is thrilled that Mommy has a live doll to share.
It is bittersweet to share the "baby" spotlight.
***
Thank you all for your prayers. It was a long, difficult labor. About 30 hours of contractions spaced, on average, 10 minutes apart. Finally, active labor kicked in, but lasted a grueling five hours with intensely painful contractions. After only eight minutes of pushing, Samuel slithered out of my body. I have never relied on God for so much strength and grace. It was the hardest labor I have ever struggled through. But, look at my reward. He is beautiful; well worth the pain and suffering.
Welcome to the world, Samuel. You are my mighty, little man of God. What a gift!

Monday, October 27, 2008

I THINK THIS IS IT!! Labor pains a'rolling

WELL.......

I think I might be in labor. For real, this time. Nice strong contractions. They hurt. Coming about 10 minutes or so apart. We have notified everyone on our call list. The midwives were given the "heads up" call. Probably going to be calling them in an hour or so to let them know the progression so far. Jason is setting up the birthing tub. I think this is IT.

I have had the intense prayer time with the Lord. Asked for peace and grace. I keep repeating the scripture "your grace is sufficient for me" and finding comfort in that as I face childbirth.

I do worry that this is another false alarm. Here I have called everyone. Even blogged about it. Then, I go to bed, everything stops. And no baby. Sigh. I hope not. Bring it on!! Let the labor roll!

FYI: Hopefully, you won't hear from me for a few days. Hopefully. I'll post when I am allowed to sit at the computer. I covet your prayers. Thank you in advance.

"Not Me!" Monday


It's "Not Me!" Monday again! Woo-hew! Be sure to check out MckMamma's site; she's a funny bunny! And, did you know she is due the same day I am?? That's right. Her little Stellan is scheduled to appear on October 29th just like my little guy. What a small, small world!
***
This week I did not stare at the "Guess What" chart on my fridge where all my friends wrote down their bets on what date I would go into labor. I did not cross off every square on my calender, slightly sad that this day was NOT Samuel's birth day.

I did not eat a piece of cake every day this week. After all, there was not left over cake from my daughter's birthday and, then, no left over cake from MY birthday. No. Absolutely no cake in our house.

I did not think I was in labor five times, roughly once a day. Nope. Because this is not my FOURTH baby, I certainly should know what labor feels like, right? So, no. It was not me who just knew I was in labor. Five times.

It was not me who heard all day Sunday, "Oh, Jess! No baby yet??" No, not me.

I was not me who almost cried when I saw that the dumb dog chewed up one of my favorite toys. I mean, one of the girls' favorite toys. The "daddy" from the Loving Family. It was not me who rescued the chewed toy from the trash, washed off the mud and then returned the toy to the toy box. Even though his face and his left hand was not chewed off.

It was not me who wrote my "Not Me!" Monday list the day before, in hopes that I will be too busy having a baby tomorrow to be able to post. No, not me. Because I am soo not anxious to see my baby. I am so thrilled to be three days from my due date and still pregnant. So thrilled.
****
That's all I got. Have a Happy Monday! Smiles and blessings on all who read this post!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Name That Photo

OK! I am actually officially changing Name That Photo to the weekend! AND I am giving you a deadline. Gasp. I know. It is very anal of me. And, I will probably have a baby around the deadline, so then you will actually get more time. But oh well. Deadline is (my due date) OCTOBER 29TH. That would be Wednesday. Lots of time.

Let your creative juices flow. Here it comes. Now comment!

Twinges of birth, but no baby yet...

It is October 25th... And no baby yet. I have this funny feeling that being pregnant has just become normal. A condition I must accept and embrace for the rest of my life. Smile. I shall keep waddling around, rubbing my wiggly belly, dreaming of baby boys and continue life as usual. He has to come sometime, right? Babies always come when they are ready. God is an "on time God", right? OK. Cool. Yeah. Soon. -Ish.

Every few days I finish a chore, stand back and go, "OK. Now Samuel can come."

I cleaned our master bathroom until it was shiny and smelled good. It was definitely ready for laboring. I wondered if that was what Samuel was waiting for before joining us out here. Apparently, it was not. Samuel did not care that the bathroom was clean.

I folded all the laundry, put it away and told Samuel I was ready for him. He was not impressed.

I went on a fabulous date with my husband. Afterwards, I assured Samuel it was a perfect time for appearing. He begged to differ.

"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord. (Jeremiah 29:11) Ah yes. God has a plan. Samuel is in on it. I need to just relax. Ah. Samuel will come in his own time.

And yes, Mom. I do feel twinges. They just do not continue to twinge. Twinges that are coming and going. No long term twinges. I need some twinges! Hee hee.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Name That Photo Winner

Thanks everyone for writing in your comments. Rose is so adorable, I know. Wink wink.

Runner up is Shannon with her comment,
"I cannot believe that they are getting this out of control for a birthday party! Wow!"

**Side note** Kudos to Shannon for posting her comment ASAP. You are sooo on the ball, Girl!

WINNER is Kim with her comment,
"I know those presents are hidden around here somewhere... did you know it's almost my birthday?"

Ha, ha, good one!!

**Another side note** If you haven't noticed, CHouston likes to comment twice. Since she is such a cute, witty person, that is totally fun. I did want to open up the opportunity to all of you to comment freely and as often as you come up with cute, punchy comments. Bring them on! I will not limit my reader's creativity. Hee hee. As many witty thoughts that you can squeeze out should be posted on my blog. Let it rain! **

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Happy Birthday to Me

Happy Birthday to me!

I had a great birthday today. My sister got up with the kids this morning. I slept in until 8:30am. Which, I know, for some would not be considered "sleeping in", but for me, it was glorious! Even better than the extra two hours of sleep was that I did not have to wake up to any poopy diapers. In fact, I declared it a "mommy doesn't have to change a poopy diaper" day since it was, after all, my birthday. Hee hee.

My amazing husband took me out on a beautiful birthday date. We went to the bookstore, saw a movie and dined at my favorite Italian restaurant. We saw the movie "Fireproof" and I highly recommend it! It has a beautiful message; actually, several beautiful messages. It does not just talk about how God can solve your problems, they specifically spread the Gospel that Jesus Christ is the way to the Master. Gasp! Did the movie theatre actually play a movie that promotes Christ?!! Oh yes, it did! Quite a surreal experience to sit in a movie theatre and hear a message I hear in church. Praise God! The young guy at the front of the theatre who tore our tickets in half and then pointed us in the right direction (deep breath, what a description!) told us the movie was great! AND! He said he went to a church right after he saw the movie; that he was convicted and absolutely had to go to a church. Isn't that awesome??! Anyway. If you haven't seen the movie, go see it. Support Jesus Christ in Hollywood.

Pregnancy update: no baby today. I was kind of hoping Samuel might be my Big Present. But, I still have a cute pregnant belly to admire and fill out my maternity tops. Smile. He can't stay in there much longer. I will hold him in my arms soon enough. Sigh. I am looking forward to meeting my son. Maybe tomorrow...

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

39 Weeks, but not counting

Here I am; 39 weeks preggers. I think I look awful cute, don't you? Rachel took this picture for me and says, "Uh. That looks like another pregnant picture of you. But, with a different pregnancy." I guess they all start to look the same. Ha ha.

The final weeks of pregnancy are an intense time period. About three weeks ago I felt as though I had been pregnant FOREVER! I was incredibly anxious to be relieved of this pregnancy. I even allowed my mind to imagine various scenarios that would give good cause for a Cesarean so that I could be "delivered" early. This was the same time frame when Mr. Samuel bruised Momma's diaphragm making it difficult to breathe and gave my shoulder and neck muscles terrible pain. Being pregnant became not fun. Officially.

Sunday morning church rolled around and I found myself crying out to God for relief. "Lord, deliver me!" I pleaded to the heavens.

A young man in our church stepped up to the front of the building. God had laid something on his heart and he felt led to share it with the Body of believers.

"God breaks His people. God has been breaking me this week and I have been fighting it. But, James 1:2 says, 'Consider it pure joy, my brothers, when you face trials of many kinds.' " This young brother in the Lord continued to testify to the trials in his life and how he was learning to surrender to Christ's work in his life.

Rubbing my pregnant belly, I allowed the short lesson to sink into my heart. I realized that this pregnancy was "breaking me". Not to sound overly dramatic, but it does feel that way. Carrying around a huge belly, not being able to breathe, and feeling the rolls of emotions all day long, every day, not knowing when the end will come... It is a trial and a "suffering" of sorts. Maybe God was trying to break me so that I would conform to His will. So that I would learn perseverance and develop character.

I dropped my head right there and surrendered to Him. "Lord, break me. I realize this pregnancy is breaking me, and I surrender to it. To YOU." My heart began a changing process right there. The rest of that week, each day's trials were turned over the Lord. I tried to not complain over all the aches and pain. Instead, I chose to surrender them to my Master.

Three weeks later, at 39 weeks full of baby, I am actually ENJOYING being pregnant. I know, I know, it sounds very far fetched. But, I am telling you truth. First off, I realize I am blessed to be able to carry life inside my womb. Not every woman can, and I know God has given me a precious gift. Praise His name! Secondly, the final days of pregnancy are the most precious because they bring an end to this special time between me and my fourth child. I will never carry Samuel so closely or so intimately. This moment will never come around again for me and my second son.

I find myself rubbing my very pregnant belly and smiling! Not because it's almost over (OK, no just because it's almost over), but because I know there is a little guy in there and I love him! I am excited to see him, I am even anxious to see him. But, I am not begrudging the final days of being pregnant. One day at a time, I surrender each trial and seek the promised joy/harvest that comes from suffering. After all, I am producing a Kingdom Shaker; Samuel will do mighty things for the Lord of Lords. What a humbling realization; to be used by God to carry a man of God. Wow.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Motherhood Follies; The Princess Doll

"Let's get Rose this one!" Isaiah shouted, carrying a Tinker Bell doll high above his head. He and I were on a mission: to choose a birthday present for Rose. Isaiah ran up and down the aisles, excitement barely contained in his little four-year-old body.

"Um," I said, distracted by my budget and the prices of the toys. "We'll see."

I called Jason to ask what he wanted to get our daughter. While we discussed prices and gift ideas, Isaiah loaded my shopping cart with toys for Rose. By the time I got off the phone with Big Daddy, there were four presents toppled into my cart.

"Isaiah, honey, we can't get all of these," I told him.

"Why not?" he said. His little brow furrowed in disappointment. "But, Rose will like these toys."

We sifted through the toys, discarding the ones that were accompanied by magic and fairies. We don't "do" magic stuff in our house. Tinker Bell Doll did not make the cut.

"What about this one? There's no magic, Mom. Just a princess," Isaiah said. He pushed a boxed princess doll (aka Barbie dressed like Sleeping Beauty) into my lap. I studied the doll. No fairies. No magic. But was it the gift for Rose?

Isaiah read my thoughts and answered me. "Mom, Rose will love this princess. She wants this. She will love this. I just know it!" His eyes sparkled in anticipation. Maybe Rose would love a princess doll. The doll made it into the cart and stayed hidden in the laundry room until the day of the party.

It was a perfect birthday for a little girl, if I do say so myself. Rose was dressed in her red velvet birthday dress, her hair up and beautiful. Four other little girls (including Little Sister Lela) were primed and ready for a Tea Party. Red streamers and pink balloons adorned the living room.

The "tea" was Sprite, but was well received by all the ladies and the one gentlemen, Big Brother Isaiah. The Birthday Girl and her guests sipped Sprite and decorated sugar cookies. They squeezed out mounds of sugary icing onto their cookies and giggled as they sprinkled tiny candies on each sweet treat.

Finally, it was time to open presents. We planted Rose in the center of the couch and her friends gathered around her. Isaiah sat on the edge of the couch, excited to be finally opening the presents.

"That's the one I picked out! That's the one I picked out!" Isaiah hollered. He jumped up and down on the couch. The present was wrapped in blue (Daddy wrapped the gifts) and was detailed with pretty, curly ribbons. (Mommy added the ribbons.)

Rose grabbed the present, wrestled with the sparkly ribbons and began to rip the paper off the box. Her eyes grew big as the last of the paper was peeled away and a beautiful princess doll was revealed. All the girls gasped; what a great gift!

Isaiah continued to jump up and down, thrilled that "his" gift was the best. "I picked that out, Rosie! I picked that one out!" he shouted.

Rose stared at the doll. In a rush of pure excitement and love, Isaiah suddenly leaned over and spontaneously kissed his sister on the cheek. All the adults went "ahhhh" and smiled until before our eyes the scene twisted into chaos.

"WACK!" went the packaged doll. Rose, apparently either misinterpreting the sweet kiss or just not wanting to be kissed at the moment, smacked her brother across the head with the new princess doll. The princess doll he had lovingly chosen for her among the aisles of toys at the store. The doll he "just knew" she would love had just whacked his head.

"Rose!" I hollered over the howling Isaiah. "That was not nice!"

While Big Daddy explained the reasons why, even on our birthdays, it is not nice to hit people, I comforted the offended Isaiah.

"Rose is not my friend!" he said emphatically.

"Shhh..."

His tears dried, but a chunk of the merriment left his face. The grown ups continued to chuckle over the emotion of "a woman".

"Yep, that's what happens in my house," someone said. "I never know if she wants a kiss. And, just as soon as I kiss her. Wap! Isaiah, that's just girls for ya." Everyone laughed.

I offered a smile. Yeah, just us girls, I guess. Isaiah recovered from the princess doll whack, and Rose opened the rest of her gifts. Days later, the princess doll has lost her princess dress and lies naked on Rose's bedroom floor. A reminder that, whether used as a weapon or abandoned on the floor, even princesses have bad days.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Name That Photo Monday Madness


Yeah, yeah so between my free massage and Rose's birthday party, I did not make the Silly Saturday Name That Photo as previously promised. So, we are back to Monday. Hopefully, I will have a baby this week and will be out of pocket, so to speak, this weekend. I guess your best bet is going to be checking my blog often. Hee hee. That will be rough on everyone. Wink-wink. So terribly sorry.

OK, this weeks picture is of my Rose. It is her birthday after all. Plus, it's her turn to be spotlighted. What is my Rose thinking/saying? What is going on in this picture? Leave me a comment with your most creative caption and sometime later this week I will pick my fav to highlight in a post. You special prize will be, drum roll please, you guessed it! Me talking about YOU on my blog. So exciting. See you then!

"Not Me!" Monday



"Not Me!" Monday again! Remember "not me" really means "I did it"! Be sure to check out MckMama's "Not Me!" list. It's a kicker! Hee hee.
***
It was not me who snuck a piece of Twizzler candy into my pocket so I could bribe my daughter to use the "big" toilet at church yesterday. No, not me. I do not bribe my children.

I was not me who abandoned my husband and sister to prepare for my three-year-old's birthday party whilest I skipped off to get a free massage. I did not totally enjoy myself and did not return home relaxed and happy. Aaahhhh....

I did not secretly think my kids are the cutest kids in church. I did not stare amazed at their adorable-ness or think my youngest daughter looked like a snow baby. I did not brag about how wonderful and adorable all my kids are to everyone at church. No, I did not annoy everyone like that. Nope.

My son did not scream a blood-curdling scream at Bojangles because the little girl he was sword fighting with did not poke him in the eye with her "sword" (aka red straw). The entire restaurant did not turn and stare at my family and my screaming son for five minutes while he did not continue to howl. I certainly did not see an old woman shake her head at our inability to control our son. No, that was not my family. Someone else's for sure.

I did not read my mother's blog about how she is disappointed to not make it for the birth of her eighth grandchild and I most certainly did not cry while I sat in front of this non-emotional computer. My mascara did not run down my face without my noticing until I went to the bathroom hours later.

I am not excited at all to see this baby who has been a part of my body for the past nine months. I do not stare longingly at his jacket that says "Mommy's Little Cowboy" and I do not imagine what he will look like snuggled inside his warm clothes. I do not whisper to him several times a day, "Samuel, you can come out, now. Anytime..." I am not impatient, in the least for my son to make his appearance.
***
Well, there's my "Not Me!" for today. Hope it rang your bell for the day. Have a good Monday!

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Little Superman swirls around the house


"ISAIAH!" the holler rolls out of my mouth, jostling even my own mind. My son races past me, a whirl of boy wearing a Superman cape.

The past few weeks has brought an influx of "boyness" from my son. My eldest son. The littlest is still wiggling inside me. But, the other one, well he wiggles around on the couch, at the table, at the computer, outside, inside, in the van, up and down the hall, etc.

Last night was the much anticipated birthday party for my Rose. And it was special. There were five girls total. And one boy. One very energetic boy. As the girls sat blissfully sipping Sprite from their breakable (yes, breakable) teacups, my whirlwind swirled around the house. It was a shocking line up difference between boys and girls.

After the fifth swirl around the house, which was accompanied with fantastic whoops and hollers, I pulled the Big Daddy aside and harshly whispered, "Can you please control your son?"

"How would you like me to do that?" came the tart reply.

"Get him to quit running around crazy and ..." my words trailed off. "Just make him stop being so loud. Something!"

"Honey," the man of my life stared at me. "He's just gonna be like this. He's a boy. This is how boys act."

I sighed and hurried off to attend to the calm girls in the dining room.

I watched Isaiah bounce around the couch, flying off of it with the Superman cape blowing in the breeze. My heart filled with softness for my ball of energy. You see, to Isaiah running around hootin' and hollerin' was a party. Sitting at the table, sipping "tea" was not. He was having the long-awaited birthday party. This was how a boy celebrates.

At church today, I saw my whirlwind attempt to tone it all down and sit docile in a chair. Remembering the flow of endless energy, I was amazed at his self control. Observing Isaiah reigning all that amazing boyness in and sitting there, miserable, suddenly made me want to cry. I sat down beside him, leaving the praise and worship songs for a moment.

"Isaiah, what's wrong?" his scowl gave away the tension in his little body. He didn't say anything.

"You know what we're doing? We're singing to Jesus. You know why we're singing to Jesus? Because Jesus loves us! This is one way we can tell Jesus how much we love him. Would you sing with me?" I rubbed his back.

Isaiah whispered into my ear, "But I don't know the words. I only know 'ABCD' and 'The Itsy Bitsy Spider." His face was filled with sadness at his loss for words.

My heart squeezed and overflowed with love and compassion for my boy. Isaiah made a good point. Yeah, that is a predicament when you are four years old and cannot read the words posted on the projection board at the head of the church. I know I was having to read along. I only "knew" the words because they were on display.

Boys are different from girls. It is how God made them. And I love how God made boys/men. I am glad they are not like us girls/women. I need their strength and courage. I need their even-non-roller-coster-like emotions. I love their adventurous spirit and all-or-nothing playfulness. It is refreshing and admirable.

I love my boy. Daily, OK, minute-by-minute, I seek the Lord for direction in raising up this human who is so different from me. I want to embrace and accept who Isaiah was created to be, including the loud noises and fast feet.

In James Dobson's book "Bringing Up Boys" he writes, "You must build a man out of the boy God gave you. Brick by brick." It is a staggering responsibility. Together with my own man of God, we accept the challenge. Hang on; it's gonna be a fun ride.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Name That Photo Winner

OK, as requested here is this week's winner and runner up for Name That Photo. (I will try to get quicker about choosing my winner. I need to find a happy medium where I am giving everyone a chance and still not waiting a week to post the winner.)

Runner UP:
Shannon said...
"Somebody in this house should probably shower, guess it'll be me this week!"

Winner:
CHouston said...
"That day, Isaiah learned the hard way that skunks and slingshots shouldn't mix."

HAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHA!! You all crack me up! Keep them coming, girlies (and start sending them, boys!) Thanks to everyone for your participation; fun as usual.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Just another day in paradise

Just a couple things to say today...
***
First off, drum roll please, I am happy to announce that we are on Day Three of potty training Ms Rose and she is doing amazingly well! Whew-hoo! I am a super-de-duper happy momma. Our little Rose has attempted potty training four times this past year. The first go around was a sad failure. Rose never initiated going potty in the potty chair; mommy did all the initiating. She would go if I remembered to put her on the potty; but she had no issues with wetting her pants and hanging out in wet pants. After a good, solid 6 weeks of that, we put everything away for another day.

Eight months later, Rose's poopers have outgrown her Size Five diapers. And I am not about to buy size six! You know diapers get more and more expensive the bigger the kid, right?? So, after several poopers oozing out of her diaper, Rose became just as grossed out as Mommy and Daddy (and Aunt Rachel). A few days ago, we talked about how she had just gotten too big to poop in a diaper because the diaper wasn't holding all her poo. (Is this too gross a topic?? I hope I am not offending anyone. We're all mommies, aunties, and friends here, right??)

Long story shortish: Rose agreed, she is a "big girl" now and jumped into her big girl undies. It has been easy breezy since. Very few accidents. Lots of Rose running to the bathroom hollering, "I gotta go potty!!!!" A few close calls that required a changes of pants, but she was still on her way to the bathroom.

I am incredibly encouraged by my daughter's success. Potty training truly is a parental accomplishment one can be proud of. Isaiah has been potty trained for about a year and a half and I still celebrate his ability to pee and poop in the toilet. It's just so much nicer than changing diapers.

Just in time for Baby Number Four, Baby Number Two has joined the ranks of toilet-using-individuals. YEAH!! (Just please pray that when Baby Number Four arrives, there is very little or no backsliding into babyhood for our Little Rosie Posie. Thanks.)
***
We are getting ready for the Rose Girl's birthday party. Rose and I shopped all morning for fun party stuff. Pink tablecloth, red plates, etc. Rose also needed a birthday dress since her party is "Tea Party" and she has no dressy dresses. Found a good buy at TJ Max. And, the huge plus is that her pretty "party" dress will easily and beautifully double as a Christmas dress. Hoo-ray!
***
FYI This is my ONE HUNDREDTH POST!! Can you believe it? I really cannot. I started blogging way back in June with the hopes of finding peace in my fertility management journey. After all, when one is as fertile as I have evidence of being, one must find peace with either using a form of birth control or letting it all go and making babies every year. For those who are new to my blog, I encourage you to check out those early posts (or read the label: fertility and birth control).

Since this is my ONE HUNDREDTH POST, I want to thank my sweet readers for your, well, reading. Hee hee. I am blessed to have an outlet for writing. I love writing. Someday, I will blog less and put some of this talent (wink-wink) into a novel. But, it's OK, I won't leave ya hanging any time soon. Well, unless I have a baby. Then you might be on your own for a few days. Until my husband allows me some computer time. For right now, Mr Samuel James is enjoying his last few weeks in the womb and I am a blog-aholic.
***
And, one last thing. I just have to say my kids are so adorable! I love moments when they are just being themselves and I catch of glimpse of their amazingness. My heart catches in my throat and I am caught off guard by the emotion that rises inside me. Being a mother is the most rewarding job a woman is granted. Thank you, God for this incredible gift!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Naming babies and supplanting


Samuel James. This is the name my husband and I have chosen to name our fourth child; our second son (Due in two weeks). Both the prophet Samuel and the follower of Jesus, James, were mighty men of God. We want this for our son. Our deepest hope is that he would hear the Word of the Lord and put it into practice on a moment by moment basis all the days of his life.

Last week someone emailed us the "meaning" of the name James. It means "supplanter". We knew it meant "supplanter", but we had not bothered to look up what supplanter meant. This email included the definition of supplanter.

supplanter= one who wrongfully or illegally seizes and holds the place of another

At first, I was thrown for a little loopty-loop. Should we still name our son Samuel James? Should we use our backup middle name? I started to really pray about it and seek God's direction. After all, I totally believe that God created this life inside my womb, so He must have a name picked out for the little guy. Who does God call this child? Is he our Samuel James?

I did my own research for the meaning of "supplanter" and the meaning of James. My favorite meaning is the Judaism meaning of "supplanter". "A supplanter is one who takes the place or moves into the position of another. Read the story of Issac's sons, Jacob and Esau. Jacob was known as the supplanter for what he perpetrated on Esau". Now, this definition does not imply that "taking the place of another" is done wrongfully. Other "supplanter" definitions specifically say "wrongfully" or "illegally" takes the place of another. But, if "supplanting" just means taking someone's place... Well, God had plans for Jacob; in fact, was it God's plan for Jacob to supplant Esau? Could God call people to "supplant" other's positions? Hmmm...

As I sought the Lord for direction this past week in naming my son, I kept hearing "James 1:1". I cannot read James 1:1 enough. I read it over and over again. "James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ..." James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ. Oh yes. This is the legacy I hope for my Samuel James. That he would be known as a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ.

I believe God has named our baby Samuel James. Samuel means "to hear" or "heard of God". And our "meaning" of James is "a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ". Supplanter or no, Samuel James is called to be a mighty man of God. Phew! Glad that's settled.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Name That Photo Monday Madness


It is Monday Madness! Name That Photo is here again. This is Isaiah... What is he doing? Well, that is up to YOU! Let the creativity roll and send in those wonderfully funny comments! Winner gets... NOTHING! Except bragging rights and a mention on my ever popular blog. (Hey, eleven whole followers! That is nothing to sneeze at!)

***

I think Monday has enough "madness" with "Not Me!" Monday fun. Next week Name That Photo is going to pop up on Silly Saturday. See you then! Well, I'll see you before then. But Name That Photo will see you then. Again. Something like that. Hee hee.

"Not Me!" Monday



It is "Not Me! Monday" again. I noticed a beautiful increase of activity on my blog with my "Not Me!" post last week. (Even "met" a new friend-Hello Amanda!) And, it was fun to participate in the MckMama adventures. So, here we go again. For those who didn't "get" the "not me" thing, here is how it works. "Not me" actually means "I did it". It is a bit of backwards fun. Silliness. Good times.
***
It is not me who does not feel like blogging right now. It was not me who practically cried when my husband asked me "why then are you blogging?" I can explain. No, I really can.

It was not me who dressed my daughters in matching outfits to go to church yesterday. I am not that obsessive of a mother.

It was totally not me who had to go to church alone because my husband DID NOT have to work both Saturday AND Sunday. It was not me who felt sorry for herself until I realized that my life is good, especially compared to the women in our church whose hubbies are deployed. No, not me. I am not selfish. I do not enjoy a good pity party. For sure.

It was not me who starred at the aphids eating my tomato plants only to shrug my shoulders and walk away. I did not wish them well on their munching. I am not too pregnant and too tired to spray pesticides on my dying plants.

I did not ignore the dog asking for more food last night because Jason was not home and I wanted him to do it.

And, I most certainly am not ignoring the pee smell in the bathroom because I want to bend over my nine-month pregnant belly to wash the toilet. Nope, not me. I love to clean bathrooms. Oh my yes. Love it so.
*****
So, those are my confessions. Hope you enjoyed the "lowdown". Have a great Monday!!

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Falling out of love...

I have fallen out of love with my tomato plants. Sigh. They are just another chore. Funny how I had such an affair with them over the Summer. I loved the silly plants. I was faithful to water them and I spent chunks of my day studying the greenery for any bugs or mishaps.

These days I water them quickly and hurry along to do another pressing chore. They are covered in aphids. Between the attack of the tiny bugs and the changing in season, the plants have begun to turn brown. They still produce many little tomatoes, but the plant itself is not so pretty. And I like pretty things. Non-pretty things... Not so much. I need to spray the "natural" pesticide on the aphids and feed the plants. Sigh. Just not motivated...

On a side note: my kids are still totally digging the tomatoes. They eat them like candy, popping them into their tiny mouths. It looks like their cheeks are filled with gumballs. Watching them enjoy the fruit of my labor, does make the labor worth it.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Look who got a pedicure??

Guess who got a pedicure?? Now, I know I just blogged about our nicely tight budget, BUT WAIT! This is a homemade pedicure, given in love from my two best buddies! My sister AND my husband. That's right, my husband. They each took a foot (Jason's was the right, Rachel's the left) and sawed away at my horrible calluses. They rubbed lotion into that super dry skin, massaged my tired feet and carefully polished my toenails. Rachel painted the flower on the showing toenail, and my darling Jason tried his hand at painting a flower on the other toenail. It looks more like polka-dots, but I still love it.
I have been wanting a pedicure for months. Our budget never gave way to a splurge of foot care and I just could not justify this as an emergency and put it on the credit card. Last night, I dragged out all my never-used Bath 'n Body foot kits and politely requested a pedicure from the other adults in the house. Can you believe they scurried to bless me and love on my feet? Jason found a Rubbermaid container to pour hot/warm water in, Rachel remembered all the tricks for a good pedicure and I sat rubbing my belly, giggling at the two amazing people at my feet. It was a good evening. I am one blessed pregnant woman!

Friday, October 10, 2008

Spilling the beans about our budget

Budgeting. It's a pickle.

Jason and I have budgeted since we got married. Being the Domestic Engineer that I am, I love handling the finances. Jason makes the money; I send it in the directions it needs to go. I find what works the best for us is to keep a notebook with a breakdown of spending for every paycheck.

When we started our little journey together back in April 2003, we were soooo poor. I think Jason made minimum wage and he had this funny thing about me working. There were no kids at home, but he still wanted his wife to be "at home". I think it is more a "see how much I love you" thing and less a "I'm a man, you're a woman" thing. Anyway, we were making it on very little money. I think we made about $225/week. Sometimes less, sometimes more. And we paid rent, utilities, groceries, gas, vehicle insurance, school loans, etc. Everything got paid. We ate out about once a month and budgeted $30/week on groceries.

I look back at those early days and am amazed that we made it. It was very important to me to not have a credit card. My college days were spent playing with credit cards and I found my way out with Consumer Counseling Services. I vowed never to own another credit card.

Somewhere between here and there, we started earning more and spending more. We have had our little bumps, but nothing that was not recoverable. We paid off several expenses, but have managed to accrue more. I even broke my vow and added credit card debt back into our lives. Not the out-of-control-credit-card I enjoyed in college, but still a credit card. Jason and I both have a weakness for spending money to cheer ourselves up. Not a good habit.

The past few months have run our budget ragged. We bought a Chrysler Town and Country back in July (first payment was due August 1st), started paying a midwife on a monthly basis and spending money for the coming baby. Things have become "tight". On paper, everything works out wonderfully. However, when we ignore the paper breakdown and go out to eat five times in one pay period... Things do not run as smoothly as the paper budget predicts.

Our solution? To recover completely and start the next payment period with extra money in the bank, we declared a "no dining out" plan. Between October 1st and October 15th, Jason and I promised each other we would not eat out at all. Ouch. It has been painful. We broke our vow once with a trip to Taco Bell on October 2nd. BUT! We were out looking for a recliner, had visited three thrift stores already and still had another hour before we headed for home. Compromising on a five dollar limit, we ate out. Other than that, we have mournfully driven past Wendy's after church; offered fake cheer to the kids when they begged for McDonald fries; and told ourselves "no" after a "date" shopping at Wal-mart- no Sonic burgers that night.

I am quite proud of us. It has been over a week since we dined out and the habit feels looser. The draw of fast food is not so alluring, and we are getting use to driving past our favorite restaurants. I am looking forward to October 15th paycheck and being able to follow our budget to a "T". Including spending the allotted $20 dining out. Hee hee.

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Mommy Brags

This is Isaiah's first time to write his name. Isn't is amazing?? We were chilling at Chili's and Isaiah was working on his color book the restaurant gives the kids. He interrupted Jason and me with a "LOOK!" We starred at his writing. Wowzers. I have been trying to get Isaiah to write his name for weeks. We went over every letter in his name. He knew them all, but had yet to put them together. Then he just up and did all by himself! I am so proud!

Superman! Another piece of work from Isaiah Luke. Did this all by himself at the table and then called me over to show me. It is his first time to draw a "person", which, according to my Child Development Class I took in college, is a huge developmental step. And, it's Superman! What a cool kid, I must say. And I am not partial at all. I mean, I am must his mother but, I am sure I would feel this way anyway. You know I would. Hee -hee.

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Body Art ala Lela Mae

Body Art ala Lela Mae
What do you think of Lela's body art?
PS There is more on her tummy...

Name That Photo Winner


Thank you all for commenting on our Monday Madness Name that Photo. Lots of funny captions for Lela Mae's frosting enjoyment.

Runner Up:
amanda's comment, "the batter goes in the pan?!?! noooooo."

Winner:
Sarah B's comment, "I'm not eating your cake batter mom, my tongue got stuck!"

Good stuff, girls! Thank you so much for playing my game. You are all funny bunnies. I loved every entry!

Funny Smells and Birthing Supplies

Something smells like poop. Seriously.

I am sitting at the computer and my pregnant nose smells it!! I have sniffed the house over, looking suspiciously at all children and the dog. No one smells bad. Just the "office". (The "office" is actually a corner of our playroom.)

What smells??? This is gonna get to me...

****

We bought the rest of our "Birthing Kit" supplies last night. Jason pushing the cart full of WIC products and I toodling around in the Wal-mart scooter. Those scooters are great for pregnant mommies with aching backs. I am not embarrassed in the least about riding in one. OK, maybe embarrassed a tad. Just a tad.

Back to the "Birthing Kit". Once upon a time, me and a friend went to Wal-mart to purchase supplies for a previous birth. My friend was a hospital-birther and thought it was icky that we were having a homebirth. Every item on the list was questioned.

"Olive oil? Why do you need olive oil?"

"Um. Do you really want to know?" I knew I would want to know, but my friend... She was not as "into" birth as I.

She looked at me. "Nope. Never mind."

A few aisles over and she said, "Peas? Frozen bag of peas?? I do NOT want to know what you are doing with those." Ha-ha. Love ya, Girl!

So we have everything on The List now. Gatorade, honey, frozen peas (FYI: bag of frozen peas makes good ice packs for sore heiney), baby diapers, newborn hats, flashlight, trash bags, humongous sanitary napkins, dental floss, etc. Good list, isn't? Makes your mind wonder off to what we might be using that dental floss for, doesn't it? Homebirth is so cool.

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Will it never end? Laundry consumes me...

I folded five loads of laundry yesterday. Fun. While I folded and folded clothes, my thoughts run away to various places. I remembered how my laundry mounds began... -cue fade out music. screen fades to black. open to married couple. young, in love, etc.-

Five years and six months ago I married the most amazing man in the whole wide world and we began our journey together. For the first few months of married life we lived in a dorm-like building in the backyard of a missionary couple in Weslaco, Texas. (I know. Kind of random.) They saved money by not using their dryer so I learned how to hang clothes on the clothes line in the back yard. There is a unique satisfaction that comes with crispy clothes dried by the sun. They smell good and you get to stand out in the sunshine to put them on/off the line.

Next we moved to Fairfield, Texas and set up camp in our very own apartment. A studio apartment that Jason enjoyed thoroughly. There are not many homes that can boast a view of the kitchen from the bed in the back of the room. Laundry in the Fairfield apartment was simple enough. I was a young wife, happily washing her husband's clothes. He worked landscaping and his clothes were often caked with mud. But I didn't care. Young and in love, I sang little songs while I hauled our laundry to the laundry mat every week and washed away.

Baby Number One arrived two weeks after Jason graduated Basic Training and we lived in Wichita Falls, Texas. Adding one tiny baby's laundry was no big deal. I think I even washed his clothes separately for awhile. AND I used washcloths instead of wipes to save the boy's bum. Since there were no other babies demanding Momma's attention, I could afford the extra time and energy to wash tons of washcloths.

Baby Number Two arrived about eight months after moving to Virginia. I dressed her proudly in her pink clothes, only to watch in horror when she broke out in a terrible rash from the harsh detergent. Rose got her own load of laundry because her skin demanded the soft baby detergent. I loved opening the dryer and seeing a load of pinks and purples. And they smelled like a baby... Ahhhh..

Somewhere between Baby Number Three and present time (very close to Baby Number Four's arrival), I have lost any sense of organization with the laundry piles. My attempts to "do laundry" once a week have overflowed into an all week chore. Jason dismisses my moans and groans by saying, "Are the clothes clean? Do we have clean clothes to wear?"

Usually, I have to answer "yes". Quickly followed by "But they're all in the laundry baskets. They need to be folded and put away."

At least I am meeting my husband's standards for laundry keeping. My own perfectionist-style standards would be laundry always washed, folded, AND put away. Having three kids plus being nine months preggers really does away with one's perfectionism. I either kill myself by continual attempts at perfectionism OR I let it run down hill and clothes my eyes to the mounds of laundry. I am getting better at closing my eyes.

So that's my history with laundry. Entertaining? I don't know. Interesting? Perhaps. Hope so. What's your history? Please tell me I'm not the only one with mounds of laundry???

Monday, October 06, 2008

"Not Me!" Monday



OK, I have to confess, I have been reading the most charming blog lately. I am entering her "Not Me! Monday" writing fun. Check out her link. Just, please, oh please, don't leave me hanging; come back to my blog for more reading fun.
***
I did not secretly laugh when my husband hollered about the hair in the bathroom floor. Doing me a favor, he did not clean the downstairs bathroom. I most certainly did not get a secret thrill out of him wiping up the ick.

I did not send my sister to do our family grocery shopping this week. I would not do that because I love to shop. Not. Do not.

I did not spend three hours on the computer last night making my blog pretty. I am not that anal nor that nerdy.

I did not leave all the clean laundry in baskets, hidden in my room, all weekend. I did not convince my son that wearing sweatpants and a "muscle shirt" to bed is just as cool as PJ's because there were no folded PJ's in his drawer. He did not cry because the "muscle shirt" looked like a "girl's shirt" because it is so small.

I did not moan and groan about little feet pushing on my diaphragm all weekend. I did not come forward for prayer and rest my head on the preacher's wife's tiny shoulder and cry like a baby. I did not wish that the baby would come early so that I could be done with this.

***
Ouch. That confessing was harder than I thought it would be. Hope you like this silly "Not me!" Monday thing. I liked reading McKMama's post. (Don't forget. Just because she has 567 followers, does not mean that my blog is not as cool. OK. Her blog is totally cool; but I am working hard to make my blog cool, too. Geez-louise. I think I am a tad insecure. Enjoy McKMama's blog. I sure do. )

Monday Madness; Name That Photo

Name That Photo
Monday Madness is here again!
I had four people join the competition last week;
let's see if we can add to our numbers.
Remember chouston was the big winner last week; will she win again??
Come on, ladies and gentlemen, what caption goes with this pic?
Good luck and have fun!

Supermom looses one of her secret (but loud) weapons

So... Mommy cannot yell today. Yep. I have lost my Supermom voice. It is gone-gone. The Voice has been fading since Saturday, but today, everyone returns to work, and I am left alone to get the children's attention. I find clapping my hands works pretty well.

It is odd to lose one's voice. I am limited to soft talking which can only be heard if the person I am talking to is in the same room. As a mommy I call to the kids from every room in the house. I call to them when they are upstairs playing and I am downstairs.

"What are you doing? Isaiah, why is Rose crying?" Then Isaiah and I often carry on the rest of that conversation with me standing at the bottom of the staircase and Isaiah standing at the top. That requires a loud voice.

I also raise my voice to insist on obedience. Not yelling insults or anything; I try to limit that to crazy days. Just kidding. FYI: I do not believe it is right to yell at your kids. Talking loudly, now that's a different story. Anyway. Back to raising my voice for obedience sake.

"Rose sit down." said in normal voice. "Rose." A little louder. "Sit. Down." Still no obedience and Momma gets loud. "Rose Jubilee, sit down right now." I am not yelling. I am talking loudly. Sadly, this is often when she obeys. Sigh. I suppose, since I have made it clear I believe in spanking, I ought to spank before we get to this point. Daddy certainly does. Mommy.... I suppose I am a little too easy on them. But now, I cannot talk loudly. What am I going to do? More paddling? We'll see.

I also use my Supermom voice when there is all-out-craziness in the house and I need to bring it to a swift end.

"NO!" Lela's new word comes out in a nice holler. Rose's high-pitched wail joins in and Isaiah is flying his airplanes so loudly it makes the jets outside sound like birds. Noise fills the house and Mom's only tool is her voice.

"Everyone be quiet!" is what is needed. Or a simple, "STOP!" Without my superhuman voice, what will I do to get everyone's attention? Hmmm... Clap my hands? Maybe I will just need to go be in the middle of it and get eye-level with the loudest child to quiet that one. I will have to try my new, quiet approach.

It is going to be a different kind of day. Good times. An opportunity to grow and stretch. Good stuff.

"Whew-hew," I whisper.

Sunday, October 05, 2008

Blog Under Construction

My blog is "under construction". Please excuse me if you happen to stumble upon my blog whilest I'm playing with backgrounds and rearranging things.

I am so excited that I have stumbled upon a website that teaches how to play with the html code and set my blog up the way I want to! It's gonna be awesome! I'm totally pumped. I feel a leettle bit nerdy... But, it is so cool and I am congratulating myself for having figured it out.

For those of you who do not blog on blogger, you may not know how it is all set up. Blogger offers lots of great templates and colors, but, being the creative person I am, I felt a bit limited. Now I am free to break out of the box!! Like I have THREE columns now instead of the two Blogger's templates offer. And I figured out how to do a fun background. I'm going to work on the header. Then my signature. Oh, it's gonna be so great!

OK. I'm going to go play with my blog. Fun, fun, fun!

Saturday, October 04, 2008

October Birthdays are so complicated


To party or not to party; that is the question.

Rose turns three years old on October 26th. Samuel is due to arrive on or about October 29th. See my predicament? We have been telling Rose for the past six months that Samuel, a.k.a. "the new baby", will be here around her birthday. She is stunningly aware of her birthday coming when the baby comes. All the birthday talk has sunk deep into her cute mind. Every day she says, "Mom, did you know my birthday is coming?" For real. Every day.

My heart is to throw a huge, gorgeous, all pink birthday party for my oldest girl. But, there are some challenges. First off, I could be in labor on the 26th! Or I could be recovering from labor with a newborn in the house. Since my babies have all come 2 to 10 days early, it is incredibly probable that Samuel will arrive ON Rose's birthday!

In an attempt to compromise, we picked October 18th as a good day for a birthday party. It is one week from Rose's "real" birthday and eleven days before my due date. We should be safe with that date. However, picking a date that does not end up to be busy is only half the problem. The other side is that I am NINE MONTHS PREGGERS!! I feel exhausted by 10am; I waddle with the back pain of carrying a baby; I am too tired and sore to thoroughly clean my house. You get the picture. How do I throw my daughter a birthday party?

Jason thinks a party is too much. He wants to take everyone to Chick-Fil-A on October 18th to celebrate Rose's big day. I think Rose needs pink streamers and pink balloons. If I was not pregnant we would invite about eight families to join the pink birthday party. Jason practically gawked at me when I said I wanted to invite EVERYONE. Hee-hee... Sorry, honey. I am not thinking realistically.

Ok, so what can a nine-month-pregnant-momma do? Realistically. Here is the compromise we have arrived upon. Definitely the October 18th date. That is kind of is a no-brainer. In his infinite wisdom, Big Daddy says I cannot invite EVERYONE. Rose's two best friends are Gabrielle and Katie (new friend from new church). Those little girls are on the forefront of her almost-three-year-old-mind. Hoping desperately that we are not hurting EVERYONE's feelings (minus the invited Gabrielle and Katie), we are only inviting those two families. GASP. I feel bad just writing that. But, it's ok. Right? EVERYONE will understand, right?

Oh yeah. One more thing. Are you ready for this? MY birthday is October 23rd. Yep. Could it BE more complicated?

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Beyond Nose Piercings and Tattoos



***Here's your response, Shannon. Body Peircing According to Jessica***


There is a woman at our new church who sports a rather cute nose ring. She is the mother of four and a faithful wife to a man of God. When I first saw her ring, it took me by surprise. Not many of my home-maker friends have nose rings. My thoughts ran something like, "Wow, a nose ring. Mm.. That's different. It's cute. Looks good on her... Is that Christian? Well, she knows the Lord. She's a Christian. What does it matter? Mmm... Interesting. Guess that is a part of who she is. I think I like it... It's cute." (Scary thing, my thoughts. Aren't they?)


One of my faithful blog readers asked me what I thought about nose piercing. So I have been researching that topic this afternoon. I was surprised to learn that the first mention in history of nose piercing is actually recorded in the Old Testament. Genesis 24:22 says that Rebekah was given a nose ring as part of the package of gifts from Abraham's servant. She eventually became Isaac (Abraham's son) wife. Other cultures use nose rings as a woman's sign of marriage and commitment to her husband. Nose rings in the US began with the hippi culture of the 1960's and 1970's. They continued to be popular among "punk" circles through the 80's and 90's.


I am not a woman of the world. I know very little about the ways of the world because I have chosen to be "set apart" from the world. It is extremely important to me that everything in my life glorifies the Lord. I do not want to look like the world. As a woman of God, I find it hard to not judge those who dress like, well, punks. Tattoos covering the body and weird piercings seem incredibly rebellious to me. But one nose piercing? A tattoo? Is that wrong?


Should a Christian seek to portray a certain image? I found a very conservative article about body piercings. Reading this man's thoughts about piercings, etc made me mad. He puts much stock into a Christian's "image"; what a Christian should or shouldn't look like. He even compared Starbucks dress requirements to the church's expectations. Are we in a business or a lifestyle??


Doesn't God look at THE HEART? I think God looks past tattoos and body piercings and sees our hearts. Sometimes body art is a reflection of a rebellious heart. But, sometimes, it is not. I need to be reminded to not judge a book by its' cover and to give every individual (covered in tattoos or not) a chance to share their heart with me.


An important point, though, is that Christians should strive to be apart from the world. 1 John :15 reminds us to not love anything in the world. We are not to be "conformed to this world" but to allow God to transform our minds (Romans 12:2). The question is "What does it look like to not be 'of the world'?"


Before I answer that question, here's another thought. What about people who came to the Lord AFTER body art? There are so many amazing converts to the Faith that look like people off the streets, because they were on the streets! Now, tattoo covered and nose-ring-wearing men and women are lifting their hands up to the Lord in full surrender to His will. I think these Christians are a beautiful picture of God's salvation. In these cases, body art definitely belongs in the church.


Here's my ultimate answer. -Drum roll, please.- Should a woman of God get her nose pierced? I shall answer this question with a question. Ah-hem... What is the motivation of your heart? Will it bring glory to God? If your heart and intentions are pure; if you have prayed about it and feel God's peace, then go for it.


Looking like the world goes beyond a nose piercing. Before we demand everyone look the same, let's bring our attention to what we do when we are not IN church. What shows on TV are we watching? What artists are filling our heads with their lyrics? Who are we befriending? If I change my life and empty the things out of it that are not "of the Lord", then I will not be "in the world". It is not about a nose ring. Get it?

And The Winner IS......


Thank you all for commenting on our new feature Name That Photo! I laughed out loud at your creative comments!! While you are all winners, of course, I have narrowed it down to my top two.


Runner Up:

awalton's comment "Sorry, girls I've already licked it....ya'll have to find your own cake!"


First Place:

chouston's comment: "Girls just wanna eat cake, oh [pregnant] girls just wanna eat cake!"


I sang that Cyndi Lauper song all day after reading chouston's comment! Way to go! Now go brag that you won the contest. Hee-hee.


But, remember, there will be another one next week!! Looking forward to seeing everyone's responses again on Monday. Blessings!

Toot your horn, number 1000 is here!

It is time to celebrate!! We hit 1000 visitors yesterday! Whew-hoo!!

Thank you faithful readers! I am humbled by every visit to my blog. It is a humongous dream of mine to be a writer and write words that stir the soul. I never thought that dream might be partially filled by blogging! Who knew!

Four months into my blog and I am at 1000 visits. So cool. Keep it up you guys! Keep it up.

P.S. If there are topics you would like for me to cover on my blog, email me (or leave a comment) and I will try to oblige. -Shannon, I have not forgotten you! Your much anticipated post will be on, soon! -

Love you all!!

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

SuperBaby Bruising His Momma

Well, it's official. I am pregnant with Superman. Yep. Mr. Samuel has super-human strength and has managed to BRUISE his mother's spleen/diaphragm.

I have had bouts of incredible pain since Saturday night. Today I sought the care of a chiropractor. Laying on the side that has the acutest pain made me cry out in his office. He very quickly told me to get off that side and take some breaths. When I was able to talk without wincing and crying, he explained that he believes my little man has hurt me from the inside out.

I heard stories about this kind of thing. I always felt sorry for those women whose kid had bruised their rib. Even heard of one poor momma getting a fractured rib from her kicking child! I never thought that would be me! And now, here I am. It does hurt terribly. The original injury spot has led other muscles to grab up; my neck and my shoulders are very sore.

Another reason to long for deliverance of this pregnancy. It won't be long. I am 36 weeks today! Hoo-ray! Please pray that God heals this injury inside my spleen/diaphragm. Pray that by the time labor arrives, there is no pain when I breathe in!

revolutionary love

I have experienced revolutionary love. Love with no strings attached. Jesus Christ loves me and made a way for me to have a relationship with the One True God. God desires a relationship with you, too. If you have yet to experience this revolutionary love, please email me at jandjkeys@hotmail.com so I can share this amazing experience with you. Blessings, -Jess