Friday, November 23, 2007

Let's Go!!

The holidays have arrived, and that brings the good and bad out in our communities.
We just spent a beautiful day of Thanksgiving, reflecting on the wonderful ways God has blessed us - and then comes Black Friday - the most disgusting of consumerist days. On the late news Thanksgiving night, the title below a report actually read "Black Friday Eve" ? What?! Anyway, it was a special report about the rioting outside the local mall, as tens of thousands of people were waiting in sub-freezing temperatures to be the first inside to commence the shopping.

Don't get me wrong here, if you were there or if you participated in Black Friday shopping, there's no condemnation there. The thing that gets me a bit fiery is realizing that Americans have become blind - not only to what Christmas is actually about, but blind to the world around us.

By focusing on the "obligatory" gift-giving, we've completely lost focus on what Jesus was born into this world to accomplish. Jesus spent a lot of time acting on the words He spoke - He recognized the errors of the time and a lot of those are the same today. If you believe something, you act like you believe it.

If you truly believe that Christmas is a celebration of Jesus' birth, how can we justify the commercialism and false generosity it's become? I'm not saying "don't buy gifts", I'm not even saying "don't play Santa Claus", an I'm certainly not saying "do not have any fun... Christmas is serious". What I am suggesting is that we do something meaningful this time around.

I've challenged our small group and now I'm challenging you. Pray about what they have to give - I won't guide you here, God knows what you have and what you can give. Pray with your spouse and come to an agreement about what that gift will be. Then pray and see what you're supposed to do with it, and who you can bless. It might be a sacrifice of time, finances, energy ... but the person God leads you to will be blessed. This shouldn't take away, but enhance your traditional family Christmas.

The only direction I will give is this: Give your gift.. in person. Reach out to someone and give to them. Try to avoid a charitable organization this time around (not because they're bad, but because that's not the point of this exercise). Give generously and spread the love of Jesus! And if you would, I'd love to hear all the stories of blessing your neighborhood or community.

Finally - Jesus spoke candidly with His followers concerning our action here on earth... Matthew 25
" I was hungry and you fed me,
I was thirsty and you gave me drink,
I was homeless and you gave me a room,
I was shivering and you gave me clothes,
I was sick and you stopped to visit,
I was in prison and you came to me.
I'm telling the solemn truth: Whenever you did one of those things to someone overlooked or ignored, that was me - you did it to me!"

Let's stop "believing, but being inactive" and start putting our faith in action!

Friday, October 12, 2007


I know it's been a LONG time since my last post. Our hard-drive failed the last week of August, and we've been trying to rebuild our digital lives since then. I think we've cut about 6 teeth and traveled to North Idaho, along with a million other things.

In September, I felt like the energy that was gaining in the summer, had lost it's momentum - not sure why, it just did. There were some really tired, low, burnt-out feelings, and I think I just lost focus on what's really going on here.

Recently I had a picture of those "visible" people ...

you know, the ones from 9th grade science class? You can see the organs, and skeletal structures, etc. through their transparent skin?

Well, I've been feeling like that is the way we should be living. I'm still trying to wrap my head around the whole thing, so bear with me, as I flounder through this one.

Hebrews 4:12-13(NKJV) ~
"For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thought and intents of the heart. And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are naked and open to the eyes of Him to whom we must give account."

I guess what I'm saying, is that we try to cover up who we really are, in order to "appear" like better people, or Christians, etc.

But, God can, not only see right through our disguises and words, see our thoughts and our hearts.
Now, this isn't a challenge to cover all those things up because "God can see what my heart is..." , but I think it's a challenge to live with your heart and mind being transparent. If you have things in order in there, you've nothing to worry about. (I don't know anyone who has it all together). We're all sinners and we all fall short...
But, if you have tumors in your heart, and destructive thoughts in your mind - this is a lot more difficult task - it's also a greatly liberating one.
Being open and honest with the things of your heart , as confession, or otherwise, will bring freedom.
God wants nothing more than for you to be who you were created to be.
So, let's take it all off! :)

Friday, August 24, 2007


About 3 years ago, our church went through a season we refer to as "Staking You Claim". During this time we were asked to create images of our spiritual claims of freedom. I've been reminded of something I wrote during that time, and am finding current relevance in the imagery - the following is what I wrote in 2004:

The worship started with a feeling of great expectation. I could feel the presence of God coming through the instruments, and all I wanted to do was bow down in awe. My body was frozen. A cold sweat covered me. My heart began to beat in a
trembling rhythm, could the people around me feel the conflict welling up inside me?

In the same moment of fear and conflict, my fleshly vision was clouded over with a very distinct spiritual picture. I am inside a wooden, stained, crudely crafted box, I can see through a key hole and I can feel the weight of the lid. I am certain that this
box has been locked for years, because I know this is the reason I cannot move to bow, shout, run, dance, lift my hands, lift my heart in worship. I had seen this picture before, and always from inside of the box. I had assumed that there were chains
around the box, as well as a large lock holding the chains. I had come to accept this position, as I had no idea who held the key to the lock.

This morning was different. I could see the box from another vantage point. This time, I could see the box through God's eyes - His loving voice saying, I didn't put a lock on that box . Look what's stopping you from bowing. He was right, there was
no lock - no chains. There were stones piled loosely atop the lid of the box. Each stone engraved with another lie I had come to know as reality. They read: Unimportant, Show-off, Uncoordinated, Ridiculous, Inappropriate, Unattractive,
Undignified, Simple, Disrespectful. Some of these stones had been inherited, some had been placed with ugly words, some with unapproving eyes, and some because of my own insecurities.

God's spirit swelled inside me - my body was overcome with confidence. I closed my eyes and took one step forward - I stood up inside my box - then another - I pressed against the lid and felt the stones shake - I only had to move five feet. Each step more freeing than the last. Each time I pressed against the lid, a stone fell to the ground. As the stone labeled Inappropriate tumbled, I arrived at my destination, I knelt down, then laid flat on the floor, with my face in the carpet. As I did this, I began to sob. What a simple task that I had denied myself all these years. Beside me the box sat empty for the first time in my life.

I felt the blessings of God raining down on me as I lay there in tears. Since that experience, God has given me many more opportunities to defy those lies. I have discarded the box. Although, I still have lingering fears, each time I come against
them in physical way (bowing, clapping, shouting, raising my hands) I am blessed in wonderful ways.

There is one stone left that I have made into jewelry. This stone says Uncoordinated. I have been wearing it around my neck since I have been outside my box. This stone discourages me from dancing and moving. Each time I feel the
urge to dance, a cold sweat comes over me and I am frozen. I will no longer feed that lie, I will bury that stone!
Like a child I will dance in His presence!

So, that was then... I can honestly say I do not know where that "uncoordinated" jewel was lost, but it's been gone for a while now! (that in itself is a miracle). What's going on now that feels like I'm revisiting this image? Well, I've found that there have been times recently where I've thought I was being held-back from some things... like I wasn't "allowed" do function in certain ways, or "released" to do certain types of ministry... well - those are lies! I know right now with certain clarity that the enemy would love nothing more than having me voluntarily step back into that box of bondage and lies, have a new list of excuses why I cannot do the things that God has for me. Well, guess what? I'm not going back in that box. The constraints that I have thought existed, do not. Knowing that, I will not be held back, I will run forward, as a flagbearer of truth and grace!

On another note... I recognized recently, that although the box was unlocked, I had to physically move in order to live in that freedom. Sometimes our healing requires action on our part. So... what's your box?

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Wake Up!!!

So, maybe there have been a LOT of distractions this last month, but I've found myself this week with that feeling of urgency again. Perhaps, in all the distraction we lost a bit of momentum, and I want to start gaining speed again... I'm ready.

God brought a passage in Ephesians to mind, and after reading it, I really felt like it woke me up. Like, it slapped me right across the face... "wake up!!!!", it wasn't even one of those nice mommy "good morning" songs... it was like one of those "you are late for school, get the heck out of bed!!! what are you waiting for?" - sorts of wake up calls. No time to shower, or finding clean clothes, not even breakfast - just get in the car and go!

I think The Message paraphrase version is a bit more raw and conveys what I'm thinking a bit better - Ephesians 5: 11-17 :

"Don't waste your time on useless work, mere busy work, the barren pursuits of darkness. Expose these things for the sham they are. It's a scandal when people waste their lives on things they must do in the darkness where no one will see. Rip the cover off those frauds and see how attractive they look in the light of Christ.
Wake up from your sleep,
Climb out of your coffin;
Christ will show you the light!
So watch your step. Use your head. Make the most of every chance you get. These are desperate times!
Don't live carelessly, unthinkingly. Make sure you understand what the Master wants."

Don't get me wrong, I don't think this passage is saying that we are supposed to abandon all chores and tasks that don't have eternal consequences - we should still be cleaning our houses and bathing the children, etc.

What I do think this is saying is that we have been called out as Children of God to be different, separate, holy - and that means a priority shift in ways that maybe we hadn't explored before. I think, if we're willing and ready, God will show us what's going on in His Kingdom, and we can be a part of it - we can change the world... we can actively participate, instead of living Christian lives that look more like "theological historians".

In order to live that way, there must be action! - We have to actually engage ... move forward... and Wake Up, open our eyes and be ready to run. So, just like that - there will be change... otherwise what's the point? Some things are about to give... and we're about to take off running!

Thursday, July 12, 2007


Yes, it's been a while since I posted. Not because there's nothing going on, but because I haven't had enough clarity, to write what is happening around here. I've got to say, I'm still having trouble wrapping my head around this stuff.

After deciding that it's time for a change, with our schedules and priorities a few major things went down. 1) David was hit with the worst infections he's ever had. Sinusitis, tonsilitis, conjunctivitis + an ear infection and a form of dermatitis. 2) His employer decided to lay off about 1000 people and created more stress than we can remember.

The "2 months on nightshift" flu, hit him - really hard. I don't ever remember him being that sick. I believe that this is the sort of thing that happens when you put your body through this kind of stress - and confirms to me that there MUST be a change.

His job is secure (which I'm not sure was a great thing this time around), and things seem to be chilling out at his job, for now - which doesn't mean that we aren't scrambling to get him out of there.

I'm not complaining - I feel like the stress and sickness and whirlwind of the last month, has confirmed that something must change. So, that part is good. Trusting that God will take care of all the details that we can't is another thing. I do know that God is faithful, and He is good - His love endures forever... what I struggle with is all the details. Why? Has he ever left us hanging before? No. I just feel like this new phase of our lives is going to look a lot different than the last, and I would love to have a preview, but that's not really how God is operating this time around.

Here's a new picture God gave me of our current situation...
Remember the Atari game Frogger? *Insert Frogger theme here* - The Frogger game concept was this: You need to get a frog across to the other side of the street and river, while avoiding catastrophic dangers such as traffic, snakes, water, alligators, and the all important timer. With your Atari joystick in hand, you controlled the frog - and timing was key. I feel like right now, more than before, we are being called to be in-tune with how God wants us to move. It will be subtle, we're gonna have to listen for His voice, over all the distractions - "Jump ... wait... wait...ok, jump now... again.... again... wait... don't look at that giant truck coming toward you ... ok jump ... jump ... don't pay attention to the alligator... just keep your eyes over here with me... good... wait... jump, jump jump!" Once on the other side of the highway and river, we will be able to look back and see all the things God had in place to get us there, and it will be SO great. On this side of things, each leap seems like we're stepping out into nothing - we know that is where faith comes in... the good kind of sweaty, scary faith! It's SO stinkin' exciting!

My Great Grandmother, Naydeen Taylor, told stories of when her husband would come home from the mine and say something like "guess what happened at work today?" and she'd reply "you lost your job?!" (with a grin, and excitement) -
"wouldn't it be great to see what God would do?".

So, at this point, my prayer is, "bring it on, Lord - we're ready for our next move, we know that you are good and faithful, and we're ready to see what you have for us!"


Thursday, June 21, 2007

Pick up your shield!

Wow, the winds of change are blowing. (Did you feel it Kristin?) We've sensed for a while that the winds were about to shift directions, and they really have. It wasn't even subtle - it was like all the weathervanes were pointing west and then a gust of wind blew through and now they're all pointing east.
I don't know about you, but a lot of "stuff" has gone down in the last week or so - big things, little things and really extraordinary things.
David's search for a new job has really begun. Resume complete - applications submitted, and the search continues. In the middle of all that - there's a big change. I guess it's a priority shift and a recognition of our place in what God's doing around here. I can't imagine him searching for a job at any other time - and he is finally a BSU grad, so his degree will make pursuing a job that much easier.
As for what God is doing, well - he's shaking things up. Not in a little way. In a really big way. (so, Cassidy, you might want to get ready to 'sing opera'!) From the things I've been reading, God is calling things out all over the country. Things that need to be repented and ways that need to change - right now! My sis-in-law just wrote to me and said that they had a similar wind change at their youth camp last week. She said the alter was surrounded with young people repenting and releasing deep dark sins that they had been bound to. That there was so much freedom gained in one week.
The stuff in my head is so big, I'm having trouble tying it all together, but here are a few words that have been spoken that I think are really relevant.

*Kristin's vision of gathering tulips - and realizing that the harvest season is short*
*Erica's dream of the storm gathering, the flood waters rising - and the people standing around talking about how they should plan for it, instead of moving to higher ground.*
*My picture of the tsunami - the turning on a heel and running fast, warning all who will listen*
* Carly's picture of someone choking, and standing up to help them - then getting distracted before she reaches them*
*a picture of blueprints of the church - and realizing that somewhere in our history the blueprint was misinterpreted, so we've built the church over and over again, but part of it is out of spec. Now after all these years of church, we have recognized that error and are afraid to fix it because it's going to be really messy. It will take some major demolition to get to that error and fix it - but it's GOT to be done*

Some kind of conclusion? No, not this time - this is just the beginning of some really big things. Let's say this is the launch pad. I say, gather your weapons, and don't forget your shield - 'cause it's time for taking this next ridge! Anybody with me?

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Feel the Burn?!

I am feeling stretched... it's getting painful. I think something's got to give. There's a time for perseverence and a time to change things up. At this point, I really don't know what the answer is. Do we persevere ... again... some more? Do we just accept things the way they are? - I doubt it. I guess it's just time for some real deep pressing in. Asking, pleading - "God, where do You want us, and what do You want us to do? We are Yours! Do with us as You wish!" I know that He will supply the wisdom we need.
James 1:5 "If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him."
What's this all about?
Life. Well, yeah... life - but more specifically, "are we supposed to be here right now, still?"
I mean, David's night shift, well, it sucks. I don't know what it's really accomplishing other than making him tired and upsetting the balance of his "real" life. Seriously, your quality hours should not be spent at work, right? Well, when you are working 12 hour shifts - through the night, and have a family, etc. you end up spending your only "awake" hours at work - far away from your family and home.
The solution? We don't know. The shifts are the nature of his job, at his company. There's really no way around it. I mean, when he's on day shift, it all seems pretty peachy, but then come the 4 months of night shift and it always gets to the point where it is painful again.
With any other job at any other company, if he felt like this, we would just move on - get another job somewhere else, across town - but his job is such that "any other company" is not across town, it's in a different state. Or any number of different states.
Then that brings up a delicate question - are we supposed to be somewhere else? It is painful to even think of moving from here. We love it here - and we love our group of friends. Then again, whether we're comfortable with something or not is not the "answer" to whether we're supposed to be doing something or not.
So here we are.
Asking for direction. Knowing that God will give it to us liberally, because he is an abundantly good God.
Bring it on, Jesus. We are ready to hear your way - if that's here, then give us more strength, more wisdom with how to deal with this stuff... or give David favor where he works, so that he can do something different there. We know something has to change, so Lord - I pray that you will orchestrate that change. Open our eyes to the "big picture" of what's going on - and don't let us miss out on what You're doing! Give us patience and strength... and David rest.

Thursday, May 31, 2007

Hang Ten!

For about 6 months Kristin has opened her home for an hour a week for some super-concentrated interceding for our community. During those meetings we've prayed, wept, rejoiced, pleaded and laid on the floor while God poured out visions and prophecies. Last week, we really felt like we made some big strides in recognizing and acknowledging errors in our (the church, both global and local) ways.
I saw a picture of a tsunami. The first thing that happens isn't the flooding, it's the receding of the tide. With a tsunami, the water recedes so far out to sea, and some are actually drawn to that receding... almost as a curiosity, not recognizing that the tides will turn instantly and they will drown. There's another group - those who recognize the receding tide for the danger that it is, they run. They run, as fast and hard, inland as they can - they scream and shout and alert anyone else who will listen. These are the people who live through the tsunami - and are able to bring others to safety as well.
This picture of desperation and urgency, is one that has really been sticking with me. We cannot walk out to the lowest tide, and stand around talking about how low the tide is, "wow, what a dry season", "church has been bla bla bla" etc. We've got to move - move fast, and tell as many people as possible that they too can be safe, on higher ground. Lord, give us the tools to speak your truth! Allow us to see the errors of our ways, and turn on our heel - walk away from those deadly things, and bring others with us!

*Update 6-7-07* - This week, this picture has been continuing in my head... over and over I see the same picture, but it's been sort of slow-motion on a very important part. As we recognize the danger, we turn - we turn on our heel. This "turning" to me is the exact definition of repentance. Repentance isn't just the recognition that there is danger in our actions, it is the changing part - the part where we turn and run from the thing that is causing us to fail. Wow, could this be any more timely? Have you been to ? Well, K is participating in this fast, which is about repenting for the sexual immorality in our nation and it's destructive path - it's impact on our world and the church. Do you think, maybe, this is part of the turning? I do. I think that there are other sins we need to call out, but this is definitely one of them - and perhaps one of the most destructive and parasitic. So, thecall fast/walk, etc. take place on 7-7-07 and we are being asked to fast and pray along with them - if you're interested, or feel the pull in that direction, I encourage you to do the same. I know there will be other sins revealed, and we are going to need to step up to the plate and call them out!
Father, make us ready for when your tide turns - give us the courage to break off these errors and sins that are holding us in the sticky mud... help us to see the things that are holding us back from running.

Friday, May 11, 2007

What are you waiting for?

This week I have had this phrase going through my head "What are you waiting for?". I know this isn't just for me, so I'll let you in on a secret... you can't sit around and wait for all your ducks to be in a row! Think about how many times you've said something like "When I [insert excuse here] - then I will [insert ministry here]."
Excuses sound something like this: When I: "finish this training" "find a spouse" "have kids" "am financially stable" "sell my house" "buy a house" "clean my house" "have a perfect marriage" "feel better" "am healed" "have more time" , etc.
Ministries sound something like this: I will: "feed the hungry" "preach the gospel" "give financial support to missions" "become a missionary" "serve my local church" "reach out to my neighbors" "exercise my spiritual giftings" ...

All those "excuses" are valid - they fill up our lives. They can be fulfilled, but let's just say that they don't. Let's say you are broke for the next 50 years - does that mean that you aren't meant to support missions? no. If you are only "kinda" healed, and still have more ailments, waiting in queue to be healed too. What if you are never fully healed here on earth - does that mean that you can't move forward and preach the gospel? no. Now, I believe wholeheartedly that we are called to pray that all those things happen. We can be healed, we can have a healthy marriage, we can be financially stable, we can sell our homes, etc. but we cannot afford to wait around for our "stuff" to be taken care of before we move forward in the things we know we have been called to do. See, if God has called you to something, he already knows your imperfections, and called you to it anyway.

I was thinking of one of those Ironman races - you know the ones that last FOREVER? Swimming, biking and running? And people train for years for one race. Even people in seemingly great shape, barely crawl across the finishline. Then you'll see that one guy - that lost his leg in some horrible incident - and he's in this race with a prosthetic leg! And he's finishing it! Why? Because he wasn't going to let something like "not having both legs" stop him from the goal that was set before him.

So, here's my point that deserves some pondering... What are YOU waiting for? I say, do it! Now is the time! Silence the excuses and make your God-given goal your priority. Let's see what happens!!

Saturday, April 28, 2007

Live, damnit, live!!

For a few months now, I've been feeling like I needed to be prepared to "speak life". I was drawn to a chapter in Ezekiel, where he was called to prophesy to dry bones. He stands before a valley of bones and prophesies that they will once again be attached to tendons, flesh and skin - and that God would breathe life into them. Then he is called to prophesy to the wind to breathe life into the bones. When the bones come alive, they stand united as a large army. These bones are a picture of Israel's dead hope, and separation from God.
Ezekiel 37:14 " I will put my Spirit in you and you will live..."
As I've prayed about my place in all this, I've come to a startling realization that we are surrounded by "dead people". People who have yet to know Christ, and people who know who He is, but are walking around like zombies, thinking they are alive, but have yet to experience God's living breath. There are a million different ways this scenario can be played out, but I think there are people and places who need an infusion of God's breath every single day. Some of them are as simple as a friend who needs an encouraging word reminding them that they are loved, more deeply today, by God, than by any other at any other moment in time. Others will be "touch and go", and the situation will be desperate, there won't be time for intimidation - I will have to be ready and willing to speak the truth of God's living Spirit.
I'm reminded of tv moments where someone is not breathing, the situation is dire - the Dr. becomes angry (partly because they are afraid the person may be lost, and partly because they have done all they know to do) - Resuscitation begins, and as the Dr. pounds on the patient's chest, he screams "live! Damnit, live!". Appropriate or not, this is the desperation I'm feeling. A burden for those who are in "critical condition" whether they recognize it or not.
" So, I prophesied as I was commanded. And as I was prophesying, there was a noise, a rattling sound, and the bones came together bone to bone. I looked, and tendons and flesh appeared on them and skin covered them, but there was no breath in them."
..."This is what the Sovereign Lord says: Come from the four winds, O breath, and breathe into these slain, that they may live."Ezekiel 37:7-9

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Now Is The Time!

This last month went by so fast! From Ella's birth to Grace's 3rd birthday then Easter - where did the time go? Whenever you have a baby, older people will say "it goes by so fast" - and you smile and nod, as if you were really listening. But it really does.

Time is moving forward whether we're ready for it or not, and I find myself caught up in the daily "stuff" way too often. I am sitting around wondering, pondering, questioning what chore I need to do next, instead of looking at the big picture of life.
Whether my kids eat PB&J or T-Bone steak, in the long run it's most important that they know and follow Christ - and are a part of a family where trusting God and following His lead are our top priority.

This is a song we've been singing at church - I think it conveys my thoughts a lot more clearly:

The winds are blowing through again, so we must follow.
A people daring to believe, we can change tomorrow,
And be the miracle of light and we won't give up the fight.

Now is the time for us to shine
Shine with the face of Christ Divine.
No compromise, for all of heaven cries,
Now is the time.

The river's running through again rejuvenating,
For everything you touch you change,
And we've all been changing.
We're a city on a hill
Tell the world you're shining still
Tell this world you always will

Now is the time..

Jesus, Jesus, precious Jesus, King of Lights
Jesus, Jesus, raise a church that's shining bright

I want to follow but what does it mean,
To live in this world and keep everything clean.
Nothing I own here is ever my own,
When I live in the mercy and blessing you've shown.
I lay down my rights; see the world through your eyes,
And fight for the hungry who pay for our lives
I want to have you in all of my world
So, Jesus, consume me, flow through me, cos now is the time...

Written by Delirious?/Matt Redman c2005 Curious? Music/UK

Thursday, March 22, 2007

No Surrendering!

Ella's first 2 weeks have been great. She is really calm and peaceful. She eats like a champ, and sleeps like the rest of the Schram family - so we'll keep her! The other kids had a rough couple of weeks, but today they're seeming a lot more like "normal".
Grace's 3rd birthday is on Monday and she is SO excited about her getting "3" and chocolate cake, and Grandma and Grandpa are coming. I think she's said that a couple dozen times already today.
Adding another baby to the mix really did bring an incredible amount of joy to our home - but in the middle of last week, both David and I were sleep-deprived and really feeling grumpy. And in the few moments where it was just me and the 3 kids, it got pretty chaotic, so I was starting to really wonder if I could do this all day with just me and the kids. The disharmony only lasted for a couple days, but I definitely do not want it to be welcome here.
At church we've had a different sort of battle cry lately - "I will not surrender my joy!" I definitely feel like we had to fight for it recently, but it is here. Joy in perfect measure for the 5 of us.
David went back to work this week, and so far - I've managed without him. It was really great to have him here the last 2 weeks, although I know he had to go back to work. I'm so thankful that he has a job where he can afford to be with us when we need him.

Friday, March 09, 2007

Ella Joy

I'm not entirely sure if it was the "buffalo chicken chili" or the Cornerstone prayer meeting - or maybe she was just ready to be born. Whatever it was, I went into labor at midnight Wednesday night. I knew it was the real deal, but I also knew it wasn't time to go running to the hospital. So, I paced, rested, did some last minute chores, bounced on the exercise ball, anything I could think of to move things along. I knew David would be waking up soon to go to work, and I could tell him to call-in instead - and hopefully the kids could sleep a bit longer before we had to make our trip to the hospital. I couldn't have asked for better timing for any of it. By the time I was having a lot of trouble with my contractions, the kids were waking up, and we were getting them ready to go. We dropped them off at Kristin's around 7am, and made our way in the "morning commute traffic" to St. Luke's. I had a couple more monster contractions on the way - and one in the parking of the hospital, so I knew things were moving along. Within 1 hour of being admitted, I had already been moved to a delivery room, had an epidural and had my water broken. Around 10:45am, Ella was born. 7lbs, 2oz - 18inches, beautiful and very petite. This was by far the most pleasant birth experience we've had, and we are so thankful for that. Ella and I stayed the night at St. Luke's and David and the big kids stayed at home. Gracie is a proud sister, but I think we'll have to keep an eye on her, cause she thinks she needs to "hold baby Ella" a lot. Peter wasn't too sure what to think of the whole thing. He mostly doesn't understand why mommy can't hold him all the time. But he has been very gentle with her, and likes to touch her soft hair, and cheeks.
We're happy to be home and resting, and so so happy to add more joy to our little family.
Ella means fearless - and I believe it will be prophetic for her. Lord, bless her with fearless faith, boldness in word and deed , and abundant joy!

Friday, February 16, 2007

Long time ... no typing.

So, it's apparently been months since the last time I sat down and typed a "blog" entry. Why? (you may be asking?) Because... there were holidays, and projects galore... and 2 kids under 3 (one of which has been potty-training for what seems like eternity). That's enough excuses right? Don't get me wrong it hasn't all been busy or hectic, but for the most part, anytime I've had any energy, I've been taking full advantage of it with projects around the house, and when I haven't had energy, I've been taking full advantage of that and laying down napping and such.
We've had a very eventful start to 2007, and it's been really great to get so many projects done in so little time. After Christmas David only had to work 1 week of nights, and then he did the ol' switcheroo to "day shift". Which has been SO great - and I can't begin to describe how much I love day schedule.
David got some new power tools for Christmas and has definitely used them around here. He set to work on projects that I had even forgotten were on the "list of projects". And we're nearly done painting every corner of our house. Each wall and item, and piece of furniture makes me really like our "old" house.
With another baby on the way, we decided to utilize the other bedroom in this house, and make a small "boy" bedroom in the basement. That room had previously been used as a guest room/sewing room/storage room, so it mostly just needed to be cleaned out and "updated" to a room fit for Peter. That project is finally complete and Peter has been sleeping in there this week - who knew having the kids in separate rooms would allow them to sleep-in every morning? What a nice change of pace. Gracie is now sleeping in a "big girl bed" (her silly grandpa's old twin bed) and she's very proud of that accomplishment.
In days of immense energy I would do as much as humanly possible - painting, sewing, cleaning, etc. and the house is definitely coming along. I've lost my "sewing room", but that's been ok too - I've adapted a "portable sewing" routine, and am able to get my stuff out and put it away with ease at this point. I'm hoping to continue with the Nampa Farmer's Market this season, although, I will take a much more relaxed approach this year. I enjoyed it so much last year, and would really like to keep those connections with our rapidly growing community.
Now we're in the last few weeks of patiently waiting for our new bundle of joy - and for once, I'm not feeling too stressed out about the idea of having 3 kids under 3 years old. I'm looking forward to what this spring has to offer.
All of this just to say, we're still here, just too busy to sit down very often. That is changing pretty rapidly as I get closer to my due date, I'm having to sit and rest a lot more than I'd like to admit. Check back soon for new baby photos and intriguing stories of giving birth:)