Saturday, October 10, 2015

Fall and Freedom

As I write this, I am sitting in Bent's Garden Center...alone.  That means, I drove...all by myself :)  And to top it off, I didn't hit anything or stall out on my way here!  Woohoo.

So I have looked around, without children pulling at me.  And now I sit with a vanilla latte and cheese scone.  I don't have to share my scone or latte (Evie girl loves her some coffee and tea!).  Can you tell I am a little bit excited about this???

So let me take some of this time to update the ole blog :)

In random thoughts of course....

*Fall is in the air here.  The leaves are changing and I have a vest on.  We have had some cold mornings, but there have been many days lately where the temps have risen during the day and it's been quite nice.

*Evie celebrated her 3rd b'day a couple weeks ago.  I took pics, but my hard drive is full, therefore I can't upload pics from my camera.  It's on the to do list to clean off my hard drive...eventually we will get to that.  She had a blast on her big day though.  We had friends over and had pizza and "Peppa Pig" cookie cakes and "Muddy Puddles" (meaning chocolate pudding with fun toppings).

*We went yesterday and looked at the preschool we hope to start Evie in beginning in Jan.  She will get to go 2-3 days a week (and it's free to boot!).  She loved looking around and had a hard time convincing to leave :)

*Silas turned 6 months old last week!  He is such a sweet easy going baby.  We are delving slowly into foods for him.  Most days I just give him something at dinner time (evening meal--called "tea" here).  So far he has had avocado, banana, and sweet potato.  He is getting better at eating and seems to love everything so far.

*Sarah Kate is doing well at school. She was commended yesterday and was "star" runner for running club this week too!  She loves running club and seems to do quite well :)  We also do "cookery" club and she enjoys that :)

*Silas was baptized on Sunday.  Michael got to do it and that was so precious.  I teared up of course :)  We have a video of it if anyone wants us to send it to them we are happy to share :)

*This Tuesday, Michael and I are going to take our "theory driving test".  I guess I should be studying right now, but I will get to that later...

*There is Christmas stuff coming out in all the stores.  It's too early.  Just my random thoughts on that :)

That's all I got right brain is too tired to think of what else I could update on...oh well :)

Off to enjoy a little more strolling around Bents, then *hopefully* a nice drive home!

Thursday, September 10, 2015


So I have so many posts I could many things I haven't blogged about, but that is just how it goes these days.

I am good at doing random posts, so that is how we will do today :)  That is how my brain works with so much going on and such little time to spend on here.

*I have a driving lesson today.  This will be my 3rd.  While I have driven about 16 years, I haven't driven in the UK and haven't ever learned how to drive a manual.  So I get lessons.  Driving here is much different and takes learning for sure.  You are on the other side of the car, driving on the other side of the road and that really can mess with a girls brain!  Then there are so many roundabouts and different signs to learn how to navigate.  There are pelican crossings, toucan crossings, zebra crossings, etc. etc.  All I need to know to pass the theory test and hazard perception test then take the driving test.  So far my lessons are helping.  I am getting out on the road more with Michael with me and practicing what I am learning.  I have only stalled out a **few** ish times :)

*SK is back at school (started last week) and is now in Year 3 (which would be 2nd grade in the states).  She is loving being back with her friends and is doing well so far it seems with what they are working on in the classroom.  Next week, school clubs start and she is pumped to be able to participate in clubs (she started too late in the year after we got here to do them last year).  She will be doing gymnastics and running clubs.  Then she and I are doing a parent/child cookery club, which sounds fun too!  The girl will be busy this fall I think!

*Silas is now 5 months old!  He is such a sweet baby boy.  He is wearing 3-6 month clothing and some 6 month things like sleepers (the boy is tall!)  He will occasionally still sleep through the night, but most nights lately will wake 1 time for a little feed).  He rolls like a champ both ways.  He is pulling himself to sitting positions when he sits in our laps, so I am guessing he is nearing sitting up on his own.  The boy is quite the drooler.  I put bibs on him most days to save his shirts from being soaking wet.  He loves batting and playing with toys now, which is fun.

*Evie girl is nearing her 3rd b'day.  She is quite the handful most days with her spunky spirit and strong will.  She will scream and throw fits most days.  She is getting more and more into playing pretend.  She dances and sings around our house everyday and has the best giggle around.  She loves shoes and loves going to get her sister from school.  She doesn't nap, but will occasionally fall asleep in the stroller (pram) on the way to get her sister from school.  She still refuses to potty train.  I haven't had the energy to fight that one more yet.  She will get there eventually right??!!

*It has turned cold here.  Like I have worn a cardigan or sweater everyday lately.  A couple mornings ago we went out the front door to take SK to school and could see our breath.  We have had to run our radiators.  Today is a bit warmer (high of 72 I think).  Better get used to the cold and dreariness right?  :)

That's all I got for now.  How about that for a quick random update...maybe that will just be the theme of how this blog looks for this season of life.  I think I end up stressing over wanting to do better than just a random update, and then don't end up doing anything at all on here.  I think I might do better if I just give in and do it this way and not give up since I don't have pics uploaded or better organized updates.  Take me or leave me...but this is how it goes these days.  3 Kiddos and life here keep me busy.

Maybe I will come back sooner and update again with some more random goodness....

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Random update...

I know I have become a slacker in the blogging dept.  No need to try and excuse myself right?  Life is crazy and this is just a back burner thing I wish I had time and brain energy to spend time on.  Oh well...

Let me just give a random update...

Sarah Kate is in her last week of school here and then will go on summer break, which will last 6 weeks.  I am excited to have her around more and take a break from rushed mornings trying to get all the kids ready and out the door in time to walk her to school.  She is excited to get into Year 3 after the break :)

Sarah Kate really did great transitioning into the school here.  It has been crazy for me to see how well she has picked up and caught up with what they were learning here.  The school here is at a different pace than where we were in the states.  For instance...she had to catch up with her "numeracy", where the kids in her class were already doing times tables, multiplication, and division!  Then in her handwriting and literacy, where the class was writing stories in paragraph form using adverbials and chronological order and such.  She really has done awesome in working hard to catch up!

She has loved making friends here too.  Yesterday she even got to have one of her classmates over for a playdate after school.  The girl is our little social butterfly for sure!

Her accent is sounding quite "British" at times as well.  She will ask me questions and her inflection at the end sounds like a little British girl.  I think it's cute :)  And she will say words more and more that they pronounce differently or use differently.  For instance...the word "tomato" is pronounced differently here and she says it that way.

On to Evie.  This girl is a mess...She is cute, but a mess.  She will have her fair share of fits each day and is slowly learning to not scream at mommy if she doesn't get her way.  I have tried to convince her it is time to be done with nappies (diapers), to no avail.  She has no shame in wearing a diaper or wetting her underwear if we try that.  She can't be bribed or anything!  She says, "I don't want chocolate!" even when I try to bribe with chocolate.  I decided after trying really hard with her yesterday and having multiple clean ups (even having to clean the couch) that we will wait a bit more.  I ain't got time to deal with that craziness right now.

Silas is doing well.  He is 3 months old now!  Hard to believe.  He had "jabs" on Monday so has been little more needy the last couple of days, but overall is an easy baby.  He normally sleeps through the night waking around 6 a.m.  The last couple of nights he has woken 1 time for a feed, but that hasn't been his norm and I am blaming that on the shots hoping he will go back to sleeping through soon.  He is a great nurser now too.  I have no idea what he weighs now, but hope to take him tomorrow to a clinic they have 1 time a week where I can have his weight checked.  They just don't seem to check weight here near as often as they do in the states.  He is in 3 month clothes now and fills those things out with his length.  I think he is going to be tall :)

What else have we been up to...

My brain is tired.  I guess I can blame it on lack of sleep the last couple of nights.  Our days just seem to always have big lists of things that need to get done, but only so much actually gets checked off each day.  Michael had to build a gate for our driveway, which took all day on Sat., but thankfully now, we have a gate so I can send Evie out to play without her being able to run to our front yard/road.  We have recently discovered that our fridge is not properly cooling.  We knew it didn't feel cool and our milk and such were going bad very quickly.  We put a fridge thermometer in and it is reading 12 degrees Celsius.  That's not good.  Finally got a hold of the letting agency on Monday morning, then they had someone come out this morning to look at the fridge to see if it could be repaired or just need to be replaced.  It sounds like it will have to be replaced, but we have to wait to hear back from the letting agency after they talk with the landlord.  All that to say....things take forever to get done here.  So for now, I only buy what we need each day and a small carton of milk so as to not have to throw out milk after a day or so.

We are hoping to go to Wales on Monday for a little day trip (Wales is only about an hour away from us) and see the coast.  Maybe I will get a chance to blog about that...maybe.

Monday, June 15, 2015

Sarah Kate turns 7!

First I will start by saying the common saying, "I can't believe my baby is 7 today."  I really can't.  She has done a lot in these 7 years and I am so proud of how well she has done with adjustments with so many moves and settled in so well to her new home and life here in England.  This year, I wanted to let her have a fun birthday party to invite her new friends over and get to know them better.  So we planned a girly tea party.  It was fun to plan with her and also to learn some cultural differences along the way too.

Let's see....

So we decided on a tea party where we were hoping to have a garden (back yard) party where to kids could play and do everything outside.  But we live in England, so in typical fashion, it rains yesterday.  Party is therefore set up inside.

SK invited all of the girls from her class and 1other friend (Ansley--from our church, who is a little older).  SO the total # invited was 13.  That's a big #, but we ended up with 8 girls total, so more easy to handle :)

We started out the party with "Musical Statues", a common game here.  I knew the game from teaching ballet, but I knew it as "Freeze Dance".  So it goes like this:  All the girls dance to music and when the music stops, you freeze.  If you don't freeze or wiggle, you are out.  Repeat, till 1 is left and they are the winner.

After dancing, we had set up our dining room cute for a little tea party for the girls.  Each girl got a plastic goblet that we let them decorate with jewels and ribbon and markers.  I didn't think that would entertain very long, but it did.  And the cups turned out so cute!

Next came the food.  The food we made (per SK's request) was chicken salad sandwiches, doritos, and fruit).  If you are American, you know what chicken salad is, right?  Not a dish made here though, so I had to explain a bit about what it was and if they didn't like it, they didn't have to eat it.  Then we had "lemonade" to drink.  Once again, if you are stateside, you think---lemons, sugar and water right?  Here, lemonade is more like sprite.  It is fizzy.  So we explained to the girls that we had "American lemonade" and "British lemonade" and let them choose :)  Then for dessert we had scones (that a sweet friend from our church made and came to help with the party!) and dirt cake.  The girls had never heard of dirt cake, so that was fun to explain what it was to them and have them try it.   I stood to the side and listened to the girls discussing amongst themselves the dirt cake.  Once conversation went like this:
"This cake is FANTASTIC!"
the girl beside her: "No, I am telling you...this is not fantastic, it's brilliant!"

It was hard not to just chuckle at hearing these sweet little British accents all in my dining room surrounding my big girl chatting over dirt cake and calling it "brilliant!".

Finally we played a game called "Pass the Parcel".  I had never heard of it, but it is a common game played here at kid's birthday parties.  So it works like this:  You wrap a "prize" with wrapping paper--our prize being a chocolate bar.  Then you wrap something else (we chose little gummy packs) in layers over the chocolate bar (think of an onion with layers of gummies).  Then you play music as the girls sit in a circle passing the "parcel".  When the music stops, whoever has the parcel, gets to unwrap a layer.  The music starts again and you continue till you get to the final layer (the prize) and when the music stops, that person holding the parcel gets the "prize".  It was fun :)

After that the girls went up to SK's room and played.  All in all, I would say it was a successful party and fun for us to get to meet the girls that I had heard SK talk about from her class.

Today is SK's actual birthday.  It is also a school day.  Since she has been homeschooled until this year, it means this will be the first year I won't be with my birthday girl all day.  Momma is a little sad about that, but know that SK will have a fun day at school.  She has requested pancakes and strawberries with powdered sugar for dipping for dinner.  Then she wants chocolate milkshakes for dessert.

Off to get moving for the day and wake my birthday girl soon!

Here are some pics from her party!

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Typical day...

I thought it might be fun to share what a typical day looks like here for us in England.  While there are many days that aren't "typical", here is what a day looks like that we don't have sometime out of the norm to do....

Michael normally gets up first (esp. depending on when Evie--the early bird--wakes) and gets himself ready for the day and gets Evie breakfast.  I will feed Silas and get myself going for the day.  We have to get SK ready for school and all the kiddos dressed and fed.  If it's not raining, I will take the laundry outside and hang it to dry (we don't have a dryer).  I put dishes away that were washed from the night before (No dishwasher either).  Michael heads off to the church office to get to work and I head with the kiddos to take SK to school.  It is .8 miles to her school from our house, so that ends up being about a 15 minute walk each way.  I might stop in a the cafe and say hi to whoever is working and get a latte depending on how Evie is doing.  We normally have to stop by the grocery store to get food for lunch/dinner for the day.  Then we head home to do things around the house/have lunch/naps/etc till it's time to go get SK from school at 3.
When SK gets home, she practices piano and does any homework she might have then we have dinner together.

Here's where things get more interesting for our life here though...I can't drive here yet.  First obstacle is we have a stick shift, which I don't know how to drive (I am learning slowly, but limited on time for Michael to take me to a parking lot to practice) and second is learning how the roads work here.  Not only do we drive on the other side of the road from what we are used to, but there are so many signs that are different and figuring out the roundabouts--which are so crazy to me!).  So all that to say, if I need to go anywhere outside the village, I either ride the bus or Michael has to take me.  Thankfully I can take the bus to Leigh which has more shops and such or to Warrington, but when I take the bus I also have to be able to carry or fit in the stroller whatever I am getting.  So for  I needed to get out this week to get things for SK's b'day party which is this coming Sunday.  I had to have Michael take me.

It just adds to the craziness of how we accomplish things each week.  Thankfully, we can get most things we "need" each week from shops here in the village.  I have also had a bit of a hard time adjusting to not being able to just jump in the car and go somewhere with the kids while Michael works.

Now yesterday....yesterday was just crazy.  We made plans to go to Leeds (about 1 hour from Culcheth) to see Jevon, a young man in our church who has been off at University.  He was having his Senior Art show and we wanted to go and see his work.  We made plans to drop SK off at school at 8:45 and be back by 3 when she gets out.  We thought that should give us time to see the show and have lunch then drive back.

Well...that didn't happen.  There was an accident on the motorway (Interstate) which shut it down for practically the entire day.  We were able to find our way to Leeds with another route, but ended up taking almost 2 hours to get there.  We thought we might be alright on the way back and surely the roads would be clear for our return home...we were wrong.  We got back in the car about 2:30 (we had made arrangements for someone to get SK from school and watch her till we got back since we saw we weren't going to be back by school pick up time).  Wanna know what time we arrived home?  8:30.  Yep...6 hours later.  At one point, while sitting stopped on the motorway, we began to wonder if we would run out of gas, since the gage was reading so low and we were barely moving.  On top of that there were 4 adults in the car, only 1 phone left with any charge...

It was an interesting, long day.  That is one way I can sum it up.  We were all so tired by the time we got home.  Of course we rush about after getting home to get kids in the bed and bring the laundry in from outside (which was wet since it ended up raining while we were gone) and get it hung inside to dry.

I did end up with a fun surprise waiting on me at home from a dear friend.  She had ordered me some Kraft marshmallows and had them shipped to me.  I can tell you...that small act of love and care meant so much to me after such a long day.  So I gobbled up a handful and then headed to bed.

Well there ya go.  Just wanted to share on here what life is looking like here these days.

Maybe more blogging will happen soon.  I have said that before though haven't I?  :)

SK is having a birthday party on Sunday.  She has invited all of the little girls in her class over for a tea party.  I am excited to get to meet her friends and celebrate her!  Pics will come from that too hopefully!

Friday, June 5, 2015

2 months today!

I realize I haven't blogged in a month and there is much more I could blog about that has been going on this last month, but today--my little man is 2 months old.  And that is what I want to write about.

As a thank you for feeding and caring for him for 2 months, Silas gave the gift of sleep :)  I sit here this morning after a full nights rest.  I put Silas down last night at 9:30 and he woke at 5:30.  SO, thank you son for such a thoughtful gift.

What else can I say about him....

Let's do a random list, since it is still early and I haven't had my tea or coffee quite yet.

*He sleeps so well at night.  While last night was a winner, other nights aren't that bad really.  He has really only waken 1 time a night since the beginning.  His norm lately has been to lay down sometime between 9 and 11 then wake around 3:30 to 4:30 or so for a 30 minute feed then lay back down till about 7 or later.  I can't complain.  Now during the day, he doesn't really take amazing naps unless he is in the wrap, which he is most days.  That mostly is my doing, just because we are on the go most days.  He gets in the wrap every morning to take his sister to school then errands and all.  I call it his "happy place".  So on days that we are at home, he doesn't sleep as well if I just put him down.  Sometimes if I am really trying, I can swaddle him up and get him to lay down, but most days I don't try.  I kinda like the cuddles too.  And if he sleeps that good at night for me, I don't mind holding him during the day.

*He is quite the smiler now.  His whole face lights up when he smiles.  Melts me.

*His sisters love him to pieces.  They each want a  turn to hold him before they go to bed.  SK is great with him and is actually pretty helpful holding him while I wash dishes or go to the bathroom.  Evie on the other hand needs a little supervision.  She tends to get too excited and squeeze him a little too much :)

*I think he likes his baths.  He likes when I pour water all over him.

*So far (knock on wood), I haven't been peed on while changing diaper.  I have however had some pretty major pooping incidents we shall say.  One morning I was changing his diaper in our bed and I will just say that I have never seen poop fly so far...that was fun to clean up.  Then while in London he had a pretty gross pooping incident in the National Gallery...that was fun too.

*He likes to be swaddled at night.

*He was weighed last week by the health visitor and was a whopping 3.76 kg, which I converted to be 8 lb. 5 oz!  The week before he weighed 7 lb. 6 oz, so that was a big jump that week.  He is officially now on the percentile chart :)  We were thankful for such a good jump in weight.

*He has never been measured for height (something not done here I guess), but he is tall.  His newborn clothes still fit, but he is getting tall for some of his sleepers.

Overall, he is a pretty easy baby.  He will sit in his bouncy seat contently for long stretches of time.  He doesn't really fuss to much as long as he isn't too hungry or needing a nappy (diaper) change.

IN other news, Michael is in London till tomorrow for Presbytery.  We are missing him around here, but glad for him to get to spend some time with other leaders of IPC churches here in England and other parts of Europe.

SK is loving school still and Evie is doing pretty well here at home.  I will try to blog agin soon about how everything else is.  Life has been crazy for sure as we settle in to this "new" norm.  I guess life has just been crazy and busy and not left much time to sit and reflect on all of it and how to put it into words on here.  I should though...

I put some pics on Facebook yesterday, so look there if you wanna see those :)  --meaning I am too lazy to upload some on here this morning.  Off to start the day!

Saturday, May 9, 2015

1 month old!

It's hard to believe this last week our baby boy was a month old!  We have loved this first month with him and are soaking in these newborn cuddles.
Last night as Michael and I were eating a late dinner, Silas put on quite the show of smiles for us.  It was the most smiles we have gotten yet.  I still need to get a good pic of him smiling, but haven't had my phone close enough to snap a pic yet.
He is still a great sleeper at night, only waking sometime around 3 or 4 a.m. for a feed.  Sometimes he has a hard time being laid back down after that, but I can't complain after he gives me a good 5-6 hour stretch to start the night.

We have occasionally gotten some nice days here lately (mixed in with some rainy, cooler days of course).  It has given us the itch to do some outdoor gardening, which is so fun for us.  We haven't owned a house in 5 years, which means we haven't really done any gardening other than a potted plant maybe or being a part of the Covenant Community Garden while at seminary.  While we still don't own a house, we are still enjoying being in a house (as opposed to an apt. with no yard really) and having a yard we can get our hands dirty in.  It is fun also to learn about what plants do well here and finding varieties of plants that you can't really find in the states.

What else have we been up to....

Sk is still loving school and doing well.  She is having to do a little bit of work at home to get caught up with her classmates in areas like handwriting (there are quite a few letters they do different here) and math.  She is doing great overall though and I am so proud of how well she is doing.

Evie is starting to get better about pitching fits and such (being a 2 year old...).  She is a silly little girl and we love her to death.  She def. can put a smile on your face with her goofy looks she will make at you and her sweet giggle.

I have been reflecting more this week on things that I have started missing from the states and also things that I love about being here.  So how about a list...y'all know I love me a good list :)

Things I miss:

*Being able to drive---We have a manual car here (which is very common here and finding a 7 seater automatic is very very difficult).  I don't know how to drive a stick :(  So Michael has taken me out 1 time so far and we are planning to do more teaching times soon.  And then there's the whole driving on the other side of the road thing too that I have to figure out.

*Hot sunny weather.  We get occasional days here where it is warmer, but not hot really.  I don't think I will be wearing shorts too much here.  I want a good hot day at the beach (white sandy beaches specifically).

*Chick-fil-A.  I would love to have a spicy chicken sandwich, with extra pickles, fries, a milkshake and a lemonade.  Oh, and CFA sauce.  mmmm....

*Trader Joes- y'all know I love me some Trader Joe's.



Now how about some things I love:

*I love riding in the car to go places and driving through such quaint villages with amazing gardens and lovely English houses.  I love the farms covered in Rapeseed everywhere right now.  It really looks like someone took  highlighter and drew all of the field.  It is stunning.

*I love that we can walk to so much.  I love walking to the cafe for breakfast them walking over to the butcher to get meat to make burgers tonight.  I love the quaint little shops in our village.  I love that we walk SK to school.  I love the abundant supply of footpaths here.

*I love looking out of my back window and seeing our laundry hanging out on the line to dry.  It has been an adjustment to not having a dryer, but I truly love it now.

*Fish and Chips.

*The endless supply of cool places to go on date nights.  Michael and I have date night every Thursday night.  That might sound extravagant to some, but it truly has been essential for this adjustment to life here in England.  It has been so needed for us and been such a huge blessing to us that we have had Emma Rose here to be willing to help us make date night happen each week.  And it has been fun to go and find some cool places to hang out for date nights.

*Food here.  I really do love so many of the foods here.  The cheeses I can get here are amazing and so yummy.  There are loads of good yummy foods here.

I will stop there for now, but hope to keep sharing on here more about life here and things I love and things that I miss too.  It's fun for me at least to write it down.

Monday, April 27, 2015

3 weeks in... has taken me a few weeks to get back on here.  Such is the life with a newborn right??!!

Let's start with a Silas update :)

After getting settled in at home, he has been great really.  The first few days were a little difficult in that he couldn't latch on to nurse, which was due to tongue tie.  He was such a sleepy baby and so chill that he really didn't fuss that much.  I was pumping so that he could get milk that way. We had his tongue tie clipped when he was 4 days old and ever since then has been nursing great.  He has been slow to gain weight, partially due to that start, but is doing better now.  He had jaundice the first week, but not so bad that he needed any treatment for it other than getting a little sunshine. He is the sweetest baby.  And a snuggle bug for sure.  He does great at night too :)  Most nights he will sleep a good 4-5 hour stretch then wake to nurse.  He rarely cries.  When he gets hungry or tired he will just wiggle around and grunt :)  He is just a laid back, chill baby. We are loving every minute with this little dude.

His big sisters love having him around too.  They both want a chance to hold him every day.  Evie will call him "My Silas" and go running to the couch and say, "My hold Silas" and scream if we don't let her hold him right away.  She loves to make sure he has his "dummy" (aka paci) close by at all times.  Evie has had a little rough time adjusting in some ways to having a baby brother around.  I think part of it is due to teething and just settling in to a routine where her big sister is gone all day and she shares mommy's attention.  She is 2 as well, so there are daily fits we get to work through too.  She is still a cutie though and we wouldn't trade her spunky spirit for anything.  It just can test our patience as we guide her in how to use her words instead of screaming at us for things she wants.

Sarah Kate started school last week.  I might have cried right after dropping her off the first day.  She loves school though.  She has already made some good friends.  She is quite the cutie in her school uniform too :)

What else...hmmm...

Let's just leave it at that for now and throw in some pics...

From a walk we took last week in Cucheth.  I love this time of year as the flowers begin to bloom.

First day off to school.  The school is about .8 miles from our house, so SK rides her scooter.  That also means if I walk her in the morning and afternoon, I walk 3.2 miles, which is great exercise for me :)

Hopefully it won't be 3 weeks again and I can get back to keeping up with the ole blog more regularly.  No promises, but it does sound nice!

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Silas Jeddie has arrived!

I am beyond thankful first of all that today I am home with a sweet baby boy and not being induced right now.  The consultant (doctor) had scheduled me to be induced this morning if Silas didn't come on his own.  Instead...SIlas decided he wanted to be an Easter morning gift and came on his own!

So here's the birth story.  I want to share how it all went down not just to tell everyone about it, but for myself too.  It is fun for me to be able to look back at the blog years later and see details I might soon forgot.

So let's start with Sat. morning.  I woke up around 6 and started feeling like my waters were leaking.  No big gush or anything, but something was going on I knew.  I wasn't feeling any contractions and it was a slow leak, so I wasn't rushing around like crazy to get to the hospital.  My plan that day was to go with SK and take her to get her school uniforms and such that she needed to start school in a couple weeks.  We were planning to go mid morning with Ginger and Ansley (her daughter) to ride the bus to Leigh and go to the store there to get everything.

I decided to call the Labor ward first and see what they said I needed to do.  They weren't too concerned about me coming in quickly and wanted me to call in to the Antenatal clinic and make an appointment with them to just come in and get a little check (meaning just check baby's heart beat and monitor me for a little).  I tried calling and couldn't get anyone to answer.  I decided I was feeling ok and wanting to be walking anyway to get things going on their own too, so I planned to go ahead to Leigh and do the shopping with SK and our friends.

Ginger was good with going with me and Michael was on standby if I called him while I was out to come and get me if things progressed where I need to head on to the hospital.  So we road the bus on in to Leigh and walked about getting uniform needs and all.  I had contractions off and on while we were out but nothing consistent or hard enough for me to have to stop going about.

We got back from Leigh around 1 and ate some lunch.  I had tried calling off and on throughout the morning to get in touch with the Antenatal clinic but no one was answering there.  So at 1 I called back to the Labor Ward only to discover I had been calling the wrong place all morning.  So the Labor ward connected me to the right place to get an appointment to come in, but at this point in the afternoon they didn't have any appointments left for the day, so they reconnected me with the labor ward.  They then said to come on in to the labor ward and they would check me out there and see how things were going.

Michael and I got things together at home and the girls situated with Emma Rose, who had to come home from working in the cafe so we could head on out.  We kissed the girls and headed off not knowing if we were going to be kept there or sent home to wait and see if labor kicked in.

Once we got to the labor ward they hooked me up to a monitor to check contractions and baby's heart rate.  **Side note--the midwife who was checking me in used an old school baby heart rate thing on my belly to hear baby boy's they do on "Call the Midwife".  I thought that was fun...haha.

She determined that it was my water leaking, but didn't do any sort of exam to see if I was dilating any.  She told us they tend to be more hands off and esp. if my water had broken that they wouldn't want to do any more checks than needed to keep from risk of infection and such.  *Def. different than what I have experience in the past, but I appreciated that.

While I was laying getting monitored I was getting some pretty good consistent contractions that were coming every 4-5 minutes.  It was coming in waves of lighter ones and some being stronger, but nothing that really caused me to be in pain too much.  Just enough where I was feeling them and knew they were getting more consistent and stronger.

They determined that I needed to stay at the hospital in the Induction Ward for the night and they would begin inducing in the morning if I didn't start progressing more on my own.  They took us then over to the Induction ward and showed us where my bed was and said we could go about the hospital as we wanted, but to just be back by 8:30 so the midwife could check in on me then.  So the Ward...hmm.  It was quite the experience.  It is a room with 6 beds in it, each with a curtain you could pull around it for privacy.  There was a chair (not the most comfortable for Michael we will say) and a birthing ball and that was it pretty much.  There were 3 other women in the room at this time.  One of the other women (and her partner) were watching an episode of "The Simpsons" and thought it was the funniest show ever.  I thought about offering our headphones to them as a subtle hint, but didn't.  Michael and I decided to head out and go walk the halls and see about getting some dinner in one of the places at the Main Entrance of the hospital.  **That also was different than what I have experienced in the past too...being told I could and should eat whatever while I was waiting and trying to get labor going.  So we went down and Costa Coffee was the only thing open (being a Sat. night and holiday weekend).  We were able to get some sandwiches and chocolate muffin and sit down there for a little bit before walking the halls again.  While I was walking I was feeling the contractions more steadily, so I knew the walking was helping.

We headed back to the ward and waited till about 9 or so for the midwife to come.  She checked the baby's heart rate and my blood pressure was all.   After sitting around there a little bit, I wasn't really feeling contractions, so we decided to go walking more.  At this point the hospital was a bit creepy to us.  Half the hall lights were off and no one was really in the halls at all, except for the wing where the labor ward was.  We still walked about though and I once again started feeling more consistent contractions, but not too painful at that point at all.

We got back to the ward around 10:30 or so and tried to watch a little bit of a show together and read a bit.  They turned the lights down around 11 I think and so we tried to lay down (or for poor Michael...he tried using the birthing ball to prop his legs on and get where he could sleep some.  Poor guy...

At about 11:30 I started feeling the contractions coming more frequent and increasing in pain.  At 12:30 I called the midwife to try and see at what point they would move me to a labor room (hoping it would be soon since my contractions were beginning to come so strong).  She asked if I wanted to get a bath to try and help ease the pain, so I went for that.  She also gave me some kind pill that I can't remember what it was called, but it was like a strong tylenol.  The hot water was great and gave some relief and helped me relax for a while, but the contractions were still coming about every 3-4 minutes.  And the med she gave me was completely pointless.

At 2:30 they were getting more intense so we called the midwife again.  At this point I had not been checked at all and just knew in my head I was feeling pressure and had to be at close to 10 cm. if not already there.  Well...she came and saw how strong my contractions were coming and asked if she could check me.  Yes.  Yes, please.  So she examined me and said I was 2.  2 flipping cm was it.  I wanted to cry.  I thought at that moment I wasn't going to make it.  She said for me to try and get some sleep and rest, to which I wanted to respond "yeah right!".  She left and said to call if anything changed or we needed anything.

At about 3:30, my contractions were crazy intense and then my waters fully broke.  Like full on gush, big ole mess broke. (Sorry if this is TMI, it is a birth story though...).  We called the midwife again and she came in first checking to make sure the fluid was clear.  She still wasn't too concerned about things being much different I guess cause she just offered a new pad and said to ask if we needed anything.  TO which I replied, "Yes!  I need new sheets."  She didn't realize with the room being kinda dark how much of a gush there was.  So then she changed my sheets and saw how much pain I was in.  She got new sheets on then decided she should check me again.  This time, I was 10.  So if you calculate that, I went from 2-10 in a matter of an hour folks.  I was quite relieved, but also like "holy cow"!  She said that we were going to rush right over to the labor ward and for Michael to get our stuff.  He grabbed as quickly as he could and she got me in the bed where she could wheel me across the hall.  All the while I am contracting every 2 minutes and moaning/groaning/screaming in pain and feeling such pressure.

We got into the Labor room (finally a private room where I don't have a lady on the other side of the curtain sawing logs (aka snoring) while I am moaning and trying to breathe through contractions.  She immediately told me to do whatever my body told me to do and just go with what it was telling me.  I start pushing around 4 or a few minutes before.  The first few pushes weren't too bad and I was feeling kinda confident, then he crowned and I know I screamed a couple times that I wasn't going to be able to do it and didn't want to.  Let's just leave that part at "it hurt a lot" but I was able to hush up and focus on using the contraction to get him out and he was born at 4:12 a.m.

I believe he must have been sunny side up (from my memory of him coming out).  The midwife put him right on my chest and it was the most precious moment.  He took a few seconds to start crying, but then gave a good little cry and then settled right onto my chest.  He was very alert to begin with and his eyes were wide open for a bit in those first couple of hours.  Michael got to cut the cord and then I just got to have skin to skin time with him for a couple hours.  I ended up needing a couple stitches, but didn't tear bad according to the midwife.

After about 2 hours another midwife came in to give Silas a Vitamin K shot and Michael put some clothes on him and wiped him off a little bit.  I was able to get up and take a shower while Michael got some cuddle time with him :)

We then were told we could stay in our private room and be discharged from there or if we wanted to go to the ward and take more time we could.  Ummm...easy, I will take the private room and early discharge.  They came in at about 10 to start our discharge and we were home a little after 11.

So Silas's birth story is nothing like his sisters.  I am so thankful for it though.  It might have had it's interesting and hard moments, but overall it was an amazing experience and I felt well cared for by my midwife.  It was amazing to be able to not be hooked up to monitors and to not have the epidural where I was able to move about so quickly afterward.  Plus I really think labor went more easily and quickly without it.

So there ya go.  I will do another blog sometime soon hopefully of how it has been since being home.  How the girls are taking to him and all.

I will ask that you pray for him to figure out nursing soon.  He is having a bit of a time with it so far, but we aren't worried too much yet.  The midwife came by our house yesterday and another will come some time today to check and see how he is doing.  I will update more on that too on the next blog, but pray with me that we can sort that out soon for him.

I will have to work on getting pics on here, but if you are on Facebook or instagram I have posted pics on there and will try to get more up later.  We used our phones mostly so far, since it has been easier :)

And I wanted to say too how great a dad and hubby Michael has been too.  He was great and so supportive while I was laboring and has been so helpful since Silas arrived.  He loves our children so well and cares for me like a champ.  I don't think I could have done a natural labor and delivery in a whole new country without him, or I know I couldn't have.  I am so thankful for him and love seeing him hold his son and look at him with such love.

It has been a fun crazy ride the last few days that is for sure!  More blogging to come tomorrow maybe...which will be determined by my little man and how much attention he needs :)

Friday, March 27, 2015

Let's have a baby soon!'s the weekly update.

We went this morning and baby boy is still measuring on the small end, but growing and looked healthy so that is a praise :)  The ultrasound looked great and it was fun to get to see him 1 more time before we really get to see him.

On to the doc.  After going over the ultrasound with us, we decided to go ahead and do a sweep and try to get my body to go in to labor on its own.  We shall see if it works soon I guess...he said if it works, it will happen within the next 48 hours, so now we just wait and see.

Due to measuring small and all, he really doesn't think it best for me to go past due date (hence the reason to go ahead and do the sweep today).  So now the game plan is to wait and see if I go in labor in the next few days or if not, we will do another sweep on Tuesday morning to give it another shot.  If that doesn't work, I am scheduled for an induction on the following Tuesday, April 7th.

So will you pray for us?  Pray that I go into labor on my own before the 7th.  I was induced with Evie and it went smooth, so I am not worried about having to be induced, except this go around will be with no epidural, and given that I think the labor might be easier if my body kick starts it instead of inducing it.  The Lord knows the day Silas is going to be born and he has got everything in control I know.  Pray I can rest in that truth.

So I guess we are officially on baby watch!  I am ready to be past the delivery part and holding our baby boy and have him here and healthy with us outside my belly.  We can't wait to meet and hold him!

I know I have been not so good at pictures on here lately, but have posted some on Facebook and instagram...that's just easier right now.  But the big camera is packed in the bag for when baby boy arrives, so more pics will come then for sure!

Friday, March 20, 2015

Baby update!

We had another appointment this morning with the Doctor and once again are thankful to be in his hands during this time and felt well cared for.  So the newest news...

The ultrasound we had done on Monday was great and baby was measuring great.  He was on the smaller end, but we know that was to be expected.  My fluid levels looked good and he looked good too :)

The doctor did say that my blood work did come back showing that my b-12 (what I get shots for once a month) was in the normal range, which is great news, but it did confirm too that my iron was low.  So I will continue on the tablets through the rest of the pregnancy and hopefully that will be all that is needed there.

The doctor does want to have another growth scan done next week and he will see me again next Friday.  With measuring small (and having IUGR previously...He hasn't called this pregnancy IUGR, but just monitoring it due to my history), he doesn't want me to go much over 40 weeks pregnant due to risks with that which I didn't completely understand.  So next week he said he would like to strip my membranes and see if we can get things going soon for labor.  If that doesn't help get labor going, then he will do it again the next week as well I believe to try again to get labor going.

So the prayer is now that I will go into labor before 40 weeks or right about then so that we don't have to talk about induction.  Will you join me in that prayer?

In news kinda connected to this, we got a call today that our shipment is here and ready to be delivered.  It should be delivered in Monday!!!!  That is a huge praise.  I have been praying that it would arrive soon so that we can unpack those things and get settled with all of that before baby boy arrives.  Plus there are any baby things we have sent from the states in that container as well, so that will be nice to have before baby boy arrives.

Yeah!!!!  So all in all today has been good news all around.  Pray for me as I continue to take care of myself these last days of pregnancy.  Pray my iron will go up and be at a stable point before delivery so there is no complication there.

Thank you for your prayers everyone.  We have felt them so much during this transition and are so so so thankful for all of them.

I will do my best to keep everyone posted with any updates as we get closer to meeting baby boy!

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Pregnancy News...

So I am now 36 weeks pregnant.  Hard to believe we are about 4 weeks away from having baby boy! I went to the Doctor at Warrington Hospital yesterday to have a "consult" since I am new here and have had IUGR in a previous pregnancy and because of my anemia as well.  The midwife wanted me to go and see him to just have him check on things. sum up how it went...I was dehydrated, anemic, and measuring small.  UGH!

None of these things were of major concern for him or us but just something to work on and easily fixed.  Along with my b-12 shots, I now have "tablets" of iron I am taking as well 3 times a day to hopefully up my iron before baby gets here.  I am ordered to drink at least 2 liters of water each day as well.  As far as the measurements go, he wasn't too concerned seeing as we tend to have small babies, but he is having me come in on Monday for a scan to see how baby boy is doing, then I have another appointment with him on Friday.

He was a great doctor and really put us at ease that all was ok and there was nothing really to be concerned about.

Now get this part...  He asked when we came in the room what brought us to England (knowing we were from the states) and so Michael answered by saying that he was working as a minister at a church here.  The doctor lights up a bit and says "wow, that's cool".   He then goes on to tell us that he goes to an Arabic speaking church in Manchester that is reaching out to the city there and has had Muslims come in many times.  He is from Egypt and his parents still live there, who are also Coptic Christians.  We got to talk to him off and on through the appointment about his church.  It was so amazing to us.

Imagine this.  We move to a country where it is less than 5% Christian and we end up with a Christian for an OB Doc here.  God is cool...isn't he??!!

So that is a little update on how things are going for me with pregnancy.  We will go on Monday to get a scan then see the doctor again on Friday and see how my levels are doing.  Pray that I won't be discouraged.   I was a bit emotional yesterday getting that report, just feeling like I haven't been doing a good job taking care of myself, but thankful too that the Lord has provided someone to help get my body on track for a good delivery hopefully.

We are still plugging away at getting settled into our home.  Our shipment should have arrived in port (wherever that is...) yesterday if it was on schedule, but we haven't heard any news about it yet.  I am hoping we will have it in our driveway in the next week or so...we shall see :)

I also had a bit of a panic with SK and her schooling situation a couple days ago.  I called the council to check on the status of her application since we hadn't heard anything yet and thought we would have already heard.  According to the girl I spoke with, there was no openings at any of the 3 schools and she would be calling that day around to schools outside of the village to find her a spot.  I am not good with just sending her to any other school where we would have to drive her outside of the village.  I was upset after that phone call, but Michael reassured me that all would be ok and God would take care of it and we just needed to trust in him about this.

The next morning, Michael calls down to Culcheth Primary School and is able to speak with the head teacher where he gets the news that there is not 1 but 2 openings in her level class and all would be fine.  She was going to call the council herself and sort it out for us.  So it looks like all will work out fine with the school stuff, I just need to trust Jesus more.  This whole moving process has been faith growing...I tell ya.  I am seeing how much faith I lack and how much I need more Jesus in my life.

So there is a little update on things over here!  Michael preaches tomorrow at church, which he is looking forward to!  "See" you guys again real soon :)

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Random thoughts from our first few weeks... of today, we will have been in England for 3 weeks.  It really has flown by with all the busyness of setting up home and doing all that has to be done to get settled here.  With my pregnancy brain and all, I can hardly think straight, so today I give you a random list of how things are going for us :)

*We have had sickness since being here.  First off was Evie with her GI stuff, then SK, then Michael, then Michael had a cold thing, and now I have a cold thing.  I am ready for us to have a healthy home again.

*I am learning more about what it looks like to cook here and what foods, I am used to finding easily in the states, are hard-to-find or non-existent here.  Take black beans for example.  I searched yesterday at the larger store (kinda like a Walmart) down the road in a nearby village.  No luck.  I finally found dried black beans, to which the girl checking us out made a comment that she had never seen these before and wondered what I used them for.

*Nesting is hard here.  I tire easily at 35 weeks pregnant and let me tell you...Ikea can wear a girl out.  Our crate, which we thought would be here by this week won't be here for another few weeks probably.  I just hope that it arrives before baby boy makes his arrival.

*I met with the midwife here in the village for the first time last week. It went well.  I will go soon for a consult with the OB at Warrington Hospital next week and also get to see the labor ward and such while there too hopefully.  Having a baby here will def. be different than the states.  If we have baby boy at the hospital, we will more than likely go home the same day.

*Setting up a home from scratch is a whole lot of work.  I am thankful for the help we have had and our friends here that did and are still doing so much to help us get settled and love on us.  We have also been blessed to have Emma Rose helping incredibly.  Let's just say the other night, she cooked Hungarian Goulash for dinner for us...along with a salad and roasted broccoli and some yummy bread with cheese stuff on top.  It was delicious.

*Being stuffy and pregnant is no fun.  There's nothing that you can take really to help...I have used some oils with a little success, but for the most part I just stay stuffed up.  Last night I resolved to sleeping sitting straight up on the couch in hopes of being about to not feel like my head was going to explode.

*I am slowly getting used to not having a dishwasher.  And not having a dryer.  And a tiny washing machine.  It's just an adjustment to remember to wash a small load daily, then put the clothes on the drying rack each day, which also means more ironing, which isn't my strong suit.

*We also have to adjust our way of grocery shopping.  With a fridge the size of a dorm fridge, we don't go and stock up like we were used to in the states.  Plus we live about a five minute walk to the local grocery store.  So we go just about every day to get what we need for that day, maybe the next as well.  It's kinda fun, except for the whole being 35 weeks pregnant.

*Flowers are starting to peek out all around here and I love it.  The flowers here really are amazing.

*Michael leaves for London tomorrow.  I am slightly jealous I must say.  It will be good though as he is going to Presbytery and will be able to meet and spend time with other men in this presbytery.

So I guess we are slowly getting more and more settled into life here.  I love the village life and love the church we are a part of here.  God truly has blessed us and I am excited to see what all the future holds here in growing the Lord's kingdom.  I am excited we get to be a part of it and pray the Lord will use us mightily for his purposes.

Pray for me to get better soon.  I go back to the midwife in the morning and hope that will bring more clarity into what the coming days will look like as we get close to the arrival of baby boy.  Pray for Michael to have a safe time and good fellowship in London.  Pray as we wait to hear back from the council about SK's school situation.  We covet the prayers of our friends and family.  I know the Lord is caring for us and will continue to.  Thanks friends :)

Maybe I will pull the camera out later this week or next and actually take some more pics...maybe...

Tuesday, February 17, 2015


Well...we have officially landed in the UK, but it feels like we are still landing and will be for a while.  If you follow Michael and I on Facebook you might have seen we have had quite the interesting start.  Since I am up before the crack of dawn and am tired of looking at the list of all the things that need to get done, I am gonna try and blog to update everyone on what is has looked like for us so far here.

Let's start with take off shall we???

On Tuesday (meaning a whole week ago!) we headed to the airport bright and early at about 6 a.m.  Evie complains on the way there of her tummy hurting :(  We get through checking our bags and security without too much trouble, which was good.  Then as we are waiting to load the plane for our first of 3 flights for the day, Evie poops and let's just say it isn't firm :(  (OH...and if you don't like to read stories of poop and puke..stop reading now...sorry--this is just honestly how things have gone for us and the story will include both things plenty unfortunately).  Continuing on...

Evie doesn't seem too upset, but a little uncomfortable.  The first flight goes alright for the most part.  Then we get off the plane in Chicago and Evie melts.  She is miserable and hurting and unconsolable really.  We scramble to tend to her and try to find some food for lunch.  At this point I wonder if we are going to either A). not be able to continue on with the travel or B). have a miserable baby for the remainder of the flights which I am sure everyone will love who are also on the plane.  Before loading she finally calms down a little, but complaining of her tummy hurting.  We load the plane and guess who poops?  Yep...Michael took her to the bathroom on the plane and somehow managed to clean her up and get seated.  As we are getting ready for takeoff, she poops again...and this one I believe almost everyone sitting around us could not only smell, but hear as well as it happened.  I took her this time to the bathroom and quickly tended to that clean up before we hit the run way.  After that Evie fell fast asleep for the entirety of that flight which was nice.  She woke up right at landing and you will never guess it...she poops again.  I am just thankful that it isn't running out into her clothes, meaning having to deal with poopy clothes while traveling...that part at least comes later in the story.... :(

In the next airport we find our terminal and get a little snack (which Evie won't really eat...).  The final flight is somewhat smooth other than both girls only sleeping about an hour max.  Michael and I didn't get any sleep and Emma Rose (who praise the Lord is traveling with us and helping with SK all along the way).  We land in Manchester around 7:30 a.m. and head to get our luggage.  We are all pooped at this point and still have to manage getting our luggage.  Oh, and we get our stroller at the gate and somehow they managed to break the bar off part of the stroller, which irritates me, but it still functions fine...gotta still call the airline about that...

I should have taken a picture of us trying to figure out how to get all of our carry ons, 10 pieces of luggage and 2 kids and a stroller out to meet our friends that were picking us up.  It would have made a good picture, but I was too tired to think about that...

We finally get loaded in the 2 cars that we were picked up in (which...let me tell you.  It was a tight tight fit).  We headed straight to the cafe to get food and see everyone.  It was great to be greeted with hugs and cheers as we got out of the car.  It refreshed my heart after a long tiring day of travel.  After eating, we headed to our new home to check out it and get some rest.

Our church family here did such a great job of having beds set up for us and things in the kitchen so we could at least have somewhere to sleep and get by in the kitchen till we were able to make it to the store to get things and for our shipment to arrive.  All of us took a good little nap (trying not to let it be too long so we could work on getting over jet lag) then headed over to the Donahoo's for dinner and everyone in the church came to hang out at our house after that.

Can I just say what a blessing it is to have families here that have loved on us so well so far.  Truly.

The next day we were able to leave our girls with Emma Rose to play around the house while we went to Ikea to begin setting up our house with dishes and furnishings and such.

One thing I have had to learn to be ok with is the amount of time it is taking and is going to take to get our house feeling like home.  We still haven't heard anything about our shipment and as far as I know it is still at the port in SC...  that's a big bummer.  We are limited on what we can fit in a small car when we buy anything at the store and we are relying on friends here to cart us around to stores to get things.  Michael is going to look for a car today for us, so hopefully that will make it easier to get out to find things for our home to begin making it feel homey.  It is hard though, being 33 weeks pregnant and wanting to next and feel settled here before baby arrives and only be able to do so much in a day.

We have a couch and chairs as of Sunday, so that is nice :)  I plan to try and take pics around the house today and post those, even though the rooms are still quite bare with nothing on the walls.

As far as the kids go...Evie didn't really eat for about 4 days and ended up throwing up 3-4 times then SK got sick.  SK only threw up one time and has had a bit of an upset tummy on and off since then.  I won't go into all the details of that since I am sure you wouldn't mind being spared that part, but I will say that I never want to deal with that much puke and diarrhea again.  We have changed sheets and pj's in the middle of the night countless times.  OH...and did I mention that our washing machine doesn't work and we are waiting for a new one to come in that we have had to order???  Thankfully, the church here has more than taken are of us and are taking our nasty stinky clothes, sheets, towels and such and washing them for us.  That has been such a help.

It was great to get to worship on Sunday with our new church, though the kids were still not 100% and still aren't really.  Evie seems close to being back to herself, but SK is still recovering.

Pray they continue to heal and get back to themselves soon.  And protections for Michael, I and Emma Rose to not get it or anything else for that matter.

Also I was able to walk over to the GP "Surgury", which back in the states we would call the doc's office on Friday and turn in my paperwork to get registered, then fill out paperwork for the midwives group.  They were going to fax that paperwork to the midwives and I am supposed to hear back from them to get an appointment set up this week.

Pray for Michael as he goes to look for a car today.  Pray the Lord will provide a reliable car that is within our budget (or below would be cool :).

Pray that we would continue to settle in well and that our house would soon begin to feel like a home.  And in the in between we would be content with how it is and not be overwhelmed with so much to do.

Pray too for SK and getting her registered for school.  I am just realizing that I have missed a cut off date for registration for the fall and will now be considering a "late" register.  Pray that somehow the Lord works out those details for her to get into the school that is closest to us.

We also have an appointment today to get set up with a bank here.  Pray that goes smooth and we can get a bank account without hassle.

Praise the Lord with us that he has taken care of us thus far.  We have so many things we can be thankful for even in the midst of such craziness.  I have to step away from the lists and stresses and sickness to look at how kind the Lord has been to our family and provided for us.

We are excited too how the Lord continues to provide for our financial needs as well.  Since arriving, we have had another church join our support team, putting us at about 93% fully funded.  We are beyond thankful for that and trusting the Lord will bring in the rest of our needs in his timing.  You can pray and praise the Lord with us on that too.

Ok...that's enough for today.  I will attempt to take a moment today to get the camera out and take some pics of our new home (even if there is nothing hanging on the walls...

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Move time...

Well...we are less than 2 weeks from our move date.  I feel like we have been running like crazy most days trying to do so many things to get ready to go and barely had time for processing what is about to happen.  I am so excited, yet grieving as well.  Since I can barely think clearly...I will give you my thoughts in list format...

*Here is how my brain works lately...-"We need to call____", "OH, we also need to___", "I am so tired, I will just lay here on the couch and write a list of those things", "Hmmm....what can I eat while I make this list", "I need a root beer"...and so it continues.

*I get tired easily these days being 30 weeks pregnant and it is hard for me to rest when my body is telling me I need to.  Michael is doing amazing at helping me do that though.  I am thankful for him.

*The lists are getting insane.  INSANE.  From phone calls, to forms, to packing, to sorting, etc., etc...

*I went to my last OB appt. yesterday.  I am now 30 weeks!  Doc sent me with all my paperwork so I can take it with me to England.  Pregnancy has gone well, I know I haven't blogged about it much...been a little busy I know.  Baby boy moves a lot and likes to kick me right on my left hip bones.  I told Michael I think I might end up with internal bruising from his jabs :)  I have been more sick this go around, but not horrible.  I have had round ligament pain (which I never had before) and the last few weeks I have been having indigestion like crazy every. single. night.  It's fun, let me tell you.

*I do love to watch my belly move all around.  It is probably my most favorite part of pregnancy.  It is amazing to see how there's a real life baby in there making my belly move.  I am amazed at our Lord every time I see and feel it.  I mean really, it is incredible to me.

* We are now officially living out of luggage pretty much.  Yesterday, we went ahead and packed up a good bit of our clothes (which we can still access out of our luggage), but needed to see if things were going to fit and how we were doing on weight.  We are planning to take 6-7 checked bags and each bag can' go over 50 lbs.  But we are trying to get each bag as close to that as possible to be efficient as well.  Then we have 4 rolling carry ons and an assortment of backpacks and such as well.

* I cried last night at church.  I actually had a good meltdown yesterday afternoon.  I laid on our bed after packing my clothes and sobbed.  It was more of an overwhelmed by so much to do and being pregnant and too tired to do it all sobbing.  I don't like the chaos going on right now and I can't control it.  The Lord is still working on me in terms of teaching me that I can't be in control all the time and have order, and that is ok.  He is showing me I am just going to have to trust him and rest in him during the chaos and know that He will take care of us through this whole transition.

*Then I cried at church.  I have held back tears the last 2 times we have worshipped at our home church.  Then I had tears last night.  I am going to miss our CPC family.

Maybe that is enough processing what is going on in my brain for now.  This move is getting real and we are days away.  I can't wait to get there in so many ways and settle into life in Culcheth.  I can't wait to set up our home and make it warm and cozy and inviting.  I can't wait to invite people over for dinner.  I am also anxious to see SK make new friends in the village and start school in the fall...and anxious about having a baby there.  I know the Lord will take care of all of my anxious thoughts.  He can handle them, I know that.

I was reading Mark this morning and am feeling a bit like the daddy in Mark 9, when he says, "I believe, help my unbelief!"  I cling to that and cry out the same thing this morning as my day begins. I struggle with my unbelief, but want so badly to believe.  I need Jesus.  I need lots of lots of Jesus right now.
Our shipment being taken...which should arrive a couple weeks after we get there.

The luggage line up.  Well...some of the luggage at least.

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

January 5

I won't even try to make excuses for my lack in blogging.  Maybe I can dream that once we get moved I will have more time to get back to blogging.  eh....not too sure.

But for today, I am going to blog.  :)

What all have I missed recording in the blog...

Let's see...since Nov. 10th, we have been able to have Thanksgiving with family for the first time in 4 years, we took an awesome trip for the first time as a family to Disney world, we have gotten sick, celebrate the birth of our Savior, and done lots of things in preparation for our big move.  I think that sums up the big stuff at least.

After our wonderful Disney trip, we came back and immediately starting fighting off sickness.  First it hit SK, the Michael and I, then Evie and now it is back to SK, though she seems better today.  Yesterday though is what I had on my mind for blogging about.

Yesterday I found myself at the Pediatricians office with SK getting her checked out due to her sickness coming back again.  I was signing in at the front desk and had to write the date.  I asked since I wasn't sure, and it was Jan. 5th, said the nurse.

My heart sank.

If we hadn't lost our baby, and he would have been born on his due date, he would have been 5 yesterday.  5.

Then....we get called back to the room and are waiting on the doc to come in.  SK and I hear a little baby crying from another room.  SK then unexpectedly brings up her sibling that is with Jesus.  She asks how old he would be if he hadn't died in my belly.  I then tell her he would be 5 that day.  I tear up.

The Lord is faithful and fully comforting though.  He loved me in that moment and I felt it.  SK then proceeded to talk about how she can't wait for all of us to be together in Heaven and be able to celebrate her brother's birthday with him there.

**And to clarify if you don't know the story of our loss completely....we didn't know the gender of our baby, but I felt like it was a boy, so that is why I say "he".

Yesterday was a big day.  Along with realizing the date and processing the emotions with that, we also started the day with a 4 a.m. Skype call :)  We had friends (who are at the church we are headed to be with in England) go and look at a new house that came up for rent.  We were anxious to hear their thoughts on the house and if we needed to jump on it, since houses seem to be quick to be rented out and hard to come by.  Well, after chatting and seeing videos of the house, we decided to jump and send in our application for it yesterday.  We are now waiting to hear back from the application!  So we could have a house lined up now, which is a huge answer to prayers!

Things are starting to all fall into place for our move.  We are in the midst of packing up what we are wanting to ship and hope to have our shipment on it's way by the next week or so (it will take 6 weeks to arrive in England).  We, as of yesterday as well, now have all the luggage we need and have already begun trial run packs to see what we will be able to fit into our luggage and still be within the 50 lb. per bag limit.

We have about 5 weeks till our move.  It is crazy how quickly things are happening now.  We will probably order plane tickets later this week assuming we get our visas back today (which they should arrive today and Lord willing have been approved and all!).

Pray for our stamina.  There is still much to figure out in the next few weeks.  And all along the way I am still homeschooling SK.

Maybe I will get back on here soon.  First though, I have to go work on packing and sorting.  And eating...I like to eat these days too.  Baby boy seems to be awfully hungry these days.

Here's to hoping the new year brings more time for blogging...