Friday, June 29, 2007

He's All Boy, Part I

"Momma, I have bug!" He loves bugs and is not scared of them. His mother may be. A little.

In Detroit last month, we were in a nature park of sorts when Caleb promptly bent down next to a turtle and attempted to pick it up. Talk about heart attack. Me and the turtle. He didn't care one bit that the turtle was hissing at him. My brother-in-law commented that it was a pretty big turtle. The man has seriously not been in Texas enough because the turtle was maybe 6 inches across and that is small by our standards. Nonetheless, it was big enough to make me freak out a little and wonder why God thought I could handle boys. I don't have a brother and my sister was (is) so scared of bugs you could throw a piece of dark yarn her way and she'd run off screaming. Not that that ever happened. I'm just saying one could do that. (God knew what he was doing giving her a girl because she is SERIOUSLY scared of bugs!).

Justin's been reading Wild at Heart by John Eldredge and I just got a book called That's My Son: How Moms Can Influence Boys to Become Men of Character by Rick Johnson. Both books make the point that moms can be overprotective when it comes to boys because we are much more likely to value safety and security over adventure. I can already see that's true in the way that Justin and I parent. But, as both books point out, boys have to be able to be adventurous in order to gain a sense of masculinity. If I want my boys to grow up to be men who protect their own families, I have to give them some space to be boys in the growing-up years. I definitely need to work on that!

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Inspired by My Friend

Last Friday was Malachi's Memorial Service. It was the most faith-filled memorial service I think I have ever witnessed. My friend, Kerri, is amazing, as many of you already know from keeping up with Malachi's CarePage, and the faith she and Ben have displayed through all of this truly inspires me. I am amazed at their ability to comfort and encourage others through their pain.

I have a book by Anne Graham Lotz called Daily Light, which is a collection of Scriptures with a similar theme for each day of the year. I don't always read it every day, but I am often amazed at how relevant the Scriptures for the day apply to my life or something going on around me. Here are the Scriptures for June 19, the day Malachi went to be with Jesus:

"Beloved, do not think it strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened to you. Now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ. The God of all grace, who called us to His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you. In the world you will have tribulation, but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world." (1 Peter 4:12, 1 Peter 1:6-7, 1 Peter 5:10, John 16:33)

I think many have wondered why Ben and Kerri have had to suffer this pain and trial. I know I have wondered that. But I also know that they don't wonder that; they don't question that God brought Malachi here for the purpose of spreading His love and message to everyone he came into contact with. Through this fight, so many have been blessed and encouraged by the love of Christ that exudes from this family. Malachi's short life has inspired me to be a better Christian, a better friend, a better wife, and a better mother.

Several times a day, I see Malachi's picture on my refrigerator, and it always makes me pause because he and Caleb were only 6 weeks apart in age. It reminds me that we're not promised even one more day with the people that we love. Why God chose Malachi and not Caleb, I'll never know, but it makes me hug Caleb a little tighter, be more patient with his "toddler-ness," and want him to know Jesus more than anything in the world. And the way he'll come to know Him is if his mommy and daddy are showing Jesus to him and everyone around them.

Last week, I saw this poem at Shannon's blog. A father was searching for the words to the poem because he had recently lost his son and wanted to put the poem on his stone. It made me think of Malachi.

We only see a little of the ocean
A few miles distance from the rocky shore;
But oh! out there beyond - beyond the eye's horizon
There's more - there's more.

We only see a little of God's loving,
A few rich treasures from his mighty store;
But oh! out there beyond - beyond our life's horizon
There's more - there's more.
-Author Unknown

There is SO MUCH MORE to our lives than what we see! :-)

Ben and Kerri, you may never know the impact your faith has had on so many people, including us. It's impossible to look at the two of you and not see Jesus. We are forever grateful for the example you have shown.

Monday, June 25, 2007

Contests!

July-4-button-160pix.jpg

5 Minutes for Mom is having a July 4th Giveaway extravaganza. Lots of cool stuff to be won...go check it out.


Steph at Adventures in Babywearing is having a summer sling giveaway; it's a Solarveil sling by KimzKreations.

The "Mommer"

"Mommer" is what Caleb calls his pacifier. Yes, he's 21 months old and we still let him have a pacifier (only when he sleeps). Before I had kids this was one of those "things" my children would NEVER do. A child walking around with a pacifier! Hmph. Well, as we all know, having children promptly kicks you off your high horse about any of these types of issues. I know the experts say they shouldn't have a pacifier past 15 months...blah, blah, blah. I know.

Part of the problem is that Caleb doesn't have anything else that he's attached to. I have put the same stuffed animals and blanket in his bed almost since his birth. He could care less about any of them. He's not attached to any sort of "lovey." Except the "mommer."

We have no idea why he started calling it a "mommer." We have always called it a pacifier or a paci, but he has affectionately named it his "mommer." Maybe because it sounds like "mommy" and he loves his mommy so much and she is so comforting to him. Yeah, we'll go with that.

I got pregnant when Caleb was 15 months old, the last possible date at which the experts say a pacifier should be used. And, as has been well-documented on this blog, the next 5 months I was practically incapacitated with nausea and vomiting. We decided this period of time was NOT the appropriate time to try and take away the pacifier because I just couldn't deal with that and the nausea, too. We needed to retain all sense of comfort and normalcy that we could since mommy wasn't at her best during those months.

So. We've reached that time where we're overdue to get rid of the thing and he's terribly attached to it. We want it gone before the baby gets here and he tries to steal the baby's pacifier for his own.

I expect there to be much wailing and gnashing of teeth over the loss of the "mommer." I know some kids get rid of it themselves or never grow very attached to it at all. Caled came out of the womb with a suck blister on his wrist. The nurses asked me as soon as they could if we might permit Caleb to have a pacifier. Once I had nursed him a couple of times, I agreed, and everyone (especially Caleb) was a lot happier. It's always been his comfort.

I'll let you know how it goes.

(And, for the record, because I always feel like I'm defending the fact that Caleb still has a pacifier, mostly to myself because it's been drilled into my head that he shouldn't still have it, kids who are thumb-suckers go way past 15 months. I'm just sayin', no judgments.)

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

In Memory of Malachi

from his parents:
"I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Now there is in store for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will award me on that day--and not only me, but also to all who have longed for his appearing.
2 Timothy 4:7-8

Malachi Thomas Schaefer did just that. He fought the good fight, he finished the race, and he kept the faith. Now on the 19th day of June, 2007 he quietly passed on to receive his crown of righteousness. We thank you all for your prayers as Malachi fought his battle against AML. Please keep praying for our family as we endure his loss."

This blog will remain silent as we mourn with our friends the loss of their precious baby. Please continue to pray for Malachi's parents, Ben and Kerri, and his sister, Emily.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Pray for Malachi

Please pray for Malachi. He's still fighting a bacterial infection and is now in ICU.

from his parents:
""The LORD is my light and my salvation—whom shall I fear? The LORD is the stronghold of my life—of whom shall I be afraid?...For in the day of trouble he will keep me safe in his dwelling; he will hide me in the shelter of his tabernacle and set me high upon a rock." (Psalm 27:1, 5).

These words describe where we are right now. The Lord is keeping Malachi safe in His dwelling, hiding him in the shelter of His tabernacle and going to set Malachi HIGH upon His rock! Thank each of you for focusing us on our Lord and his promise to accomplish the perfect plan.

Malachi is not dong well at all from the look of things. He is extremely bloated and resting all of the time. Around 2:00 pm he was intabated(sp?) and now a machine is breathing for him so he can rest. He is completely sedated and being given pain medicine. He had a CT scan of his throat area and the scan showed major mucositis. Thankfully a tube was in place before a major problem arose and Malachi could not breath. Right now he is getting a new PICC type line placed in his leg and a spinal tap is being preformed. He is on major antibiotics, fluids, and pain meds. He does not look like himself but the fight is still there. No matter what happens we know that the Lord is holding Malachi in the palm of his hand and has placed just the right people to carry out His perfect plan."

Doctor's Orders

I had my check-up today, which lasted WAY longer than normal because my doctor got called into an emergency c-section right after they called me back! We were the ones making everyone wait 2 years ago, so I didn't mind so much.

I didn't gain any weight this month, so that's still a -7 overall. She's not worried and said I'll gain it eventually after my body recovers from all the months of losing. The baby is growing well and everything else looks good.

I hurt my back sometime last week and have been having bad spasms off and on since then. She ordered me to get a pregnancy massage. Bummer, huh? Actually, she said I'll probably need more than one for them to work out the kinks. I can't argue with that!

Monday, June 18, 2007

Tree Musings


"Blessed is the man
who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked
or stand in the way of sinners
or sit in the seat of mockers.

But his delight is in the law of the LORD,
and on his law he meditates day and night.

He is like a tree planted by streams of water,
which yields its fruit in season
and whose leaf does not wither.
Whatever he does prospers."

~Psalm 1:1-3


sorry for the fuzzy picture

Please Say a Prayer


I posted about Malachi back in January, and his mom, Kerri, comments here often. Malachi has finished his chemo treatments now, but he has a bacterial infection that his body is having a hard time fighting off. Would you please say a prayer for him today? There is a team of doctors that are trying to figure out how to go about treating this, and they are giving him morphine for the pain. His little body has been through so much already; please pray for his complete healing.

Friday, June 15, 2007

The glory of children

"Children's children are the crown of old men, and the glory of children is their father." ~Proverbs 17:6

There is almost no greater joy to me than to know that my boys will grow up with Justin as their father. A man of integrity and strong conviction, a man with a tender heart, a man well-respected by others, a man with more patience in his little finger than I possess in my whole body. A man who loves his wife and is not afraid to show it.

I love you, babe, and am honored to be walking this parenthood journey right beside you.


"Lord, I pray that my husband will inspire his children to honor him as their father so that their lives will be long and blessed. May the spiritual inheritance he passes on to them be one rich in the fullness of Your Holy Spirit. Enable him to model clearly a walk of submission to Your laws. May he delight in his children and long to grow them up Your way. Being a good father is something he wants very much. I pray that You would give him the desire of his heart." ~from The Power of a Praying Wife

"Whom the LORD loves He corrects, just as a father the son in whom he delights." ~Proverbs 3:12

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Sling Contest

There are so many cool baby slings out there, and there's a contest here to win a $75 gift certificate to MamaKanga. I would love to have a stretchy pouch or a wrap for this next baby. I know he'll be carried much more than Caleb was since I have a little one to run after all day.

Check out the contest here and stop by MamaKanga to see all the beautiful baby gear.

Monday, June 11, 2007

This Means War!

Yesterday, Caleb and I were out in the yard playing while Justin was mowing the grass. Caleb looks across the street at our neighbor's house, where they have a small LSU flag in their yard and says, "Go Tigers!" I'm thinking, "what did he just say??" and "where did he learn that?" Then it occurred to me that while babysitting Caleb (graciously and I'm very thankful!), our neighbor taught him to say "Go Tigers!" :-|

Our neighbors graduated from Louisiana State University (LSU), the Tigers. Justin and I, as most of you know, graduated from Texas A&M University, the Aggies.



Apparently, as the story goes, there was so much Aggie stuff in our house that Shelley felt it needed something else. Like a toddler saying, "Go Tigers!" We told our neighbor that when their 6-week-old little boy is able to talk, it's war.


Just a little good-natured neighborhood rivalry. :-)

Friday, June 08, 2007

Impressed

Wednesday night, Justin and I attended a team-building dinner for his group at work and their spouses. The guest speaker for the night was one of the founders of the company, who told us a little about the history of why they decided to start an engineering company in the late 80s when lots of companies were folding because of the oil and gas crisis. He said their vision for the company was always based on the concept of servant leadership. At this point, I'm thinking "Wow. I've never heard anyone outside of a church talk about servant leadership." He even quoted Philippians 2:2-4.

I was quite impressed! He said that as employees of this company, you should be looking at how you can serve your co-workers, vendors, clients, etc. I was especially amazed when someone asked a question about why the company had been so successful through the oil and gas crisis and he replied, "It was God."

I came away with a new appreciation for the company that Justin works for, and an appreciation for these men that have held to their values (something he also talked a lot about) in the fast-paced corporate world, even when no one else around them has done so. And God gets all the glory.

Quite impressive, don't you think?

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

You Won't Be Sorry

For those of you hounding me to update Caleb's blog, click over there to see an awesome picture of him! You won't be sorry you did.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Busy

Things around here are busy, as you can tell from the lack of posting lately. Caleb's suffering from a little virus. I had to take him and Justin to the doctor on Saturday morning (Justin also has been suffering from a weird virus that attacked the muscles in his arms and made them really weak. He's much better and getting stronger every day). Mommy finally gets to feeling better and everyone else gets sick!

Justin and I have a dinner to go to tomorrow night at his work for employees and spouses. No kids. So, I have to find someone to watch Caleb for a few hours. These are the times I wish we had family close because I know my mom and Justin's mom would jump at the chance for us to drop Caleb off for a few hours. *sigh* Most of our friends have more than one child at this point, so it gets trickier to find someone who is not busy with their own family life when I need a babysitter. My favorite babysitter is getting married next month and moving to Arkansas, so she's a little busy with all that.

GiBee commented on my last post that I should be pregnant more often because it "agrees with me." I just had someone at church tell me that on Sunday night. And during my last pregnancy more than one person said it, too. I agree...I look better pregnant than I do not pregnant because pregnancy is the only time I can't seem to gain any weight! My face is thin, and I love it! :-) I feel that same way about being pregnant more often and would have a bunch of kids (my husband and my family are cringing right now because they know how many kids I've said I wanted!), except that I'm not sure I could be as sick as I've been with this one and take care of more than one child. At my last appointment, my doctor said she didn't know how I'd been taking care of a little one feeling like I have been. I've had lots of help; that's the only way!

Caleb and I just started a "mommy and me" swim class last week. It's good for us to get out of the house, and for me to get a little exercise in the process. He HATED it. He pretty much screamed his head off the entire time. Probably because he was getting sick and his mommy didn't know it yet. They sing fun songs and play with toys in the water, so I'm hoping he warms up to it this week. It's fun for us to do something like this together because pretty soon we won't have that luxury when mommy is nursing a newborn.

I'm also helping with our church's VBS next week. I'm doing a little enrichment booth on prayer that the kids will spend about 8 minutes in (there are about 15 booths that they will visit in between the lessons and crafts). If y'all have any bright ideas on how to talk to kids entering Kindergarten through 6th grade about prayer, send them my way. I taught high school and don't yet have kids in elementary school, so I'm not really sure how to go about it. (They will be studying about Jonah, Daniel, David & Goliath, Esther, and Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego in their lessons, so I want to tie in a little of what they've already learned or will by the end of the week.)

Monday, June 04, 2007

In Order to Please My Mother

Family picture at the Detroit Zoo


My mom has been hounding my sister and I to update our blogs, so here it is. :-)

Our trip to Detroit was good. Caleb did exceptionally well on the plane both times, despite being confined to our laps for 2 1/2 hours and being delayed in the airport for an hour and a half on the way out there.

The rest of the time his body was invaded by some alien child. He was CLINGY to his daddy and me the WHOLE time. He wouldn't even let his Mimi take him outside to swing while I took a shower...for a whole week. I guess we really had him out of his comfort zone, being in a totally new place and wreaking havoc on his schedule (up too late at night, sleeping in the same room with mom and dad, and little or no naps).

It was so great, however, to spend time with hubby's family! We only get to see them a few times a year, and we had not visited his brother in Detroit in 3 years. I didn't have a brother growing up, so I've adopted hubby's brothers as my own. Any girl they want to marry will have to get through me first and I am PICKY and protective! ;-)

So, to the part my mom really wants to see,the pictures.

Caleb doing his favorite thing as of late, swinging ("Mommy, wing more! wing more! wing more!")

Sporting his new Cookie Monster and Elmo bibs from Mimi:


Daddy and Caleb at Greenfield Village (in the Henry Ford Center complex):


Caleb "talking" on the phone. He always wants to talk to whomever I'm talking to, and sometimes he holds things up to the phone for them to see. :-)


Daddy and Caleb at the monkey exhibit (can you tell who was taking the pictures?):


I think that's about long enough for now. I'm feeling MUCH better these days; it seems 22 weeks was the magic number this time around! I'll try to remember to take another belly pic soon. Strangers are asking me when I'm due, so I know I've gotten bigger. Still no weight gain to speak of, besides the two pounds, but the baby is moving a lot and having a good old time in my belly. It seems he has the same schedule as his older brother did in utero...wake up just as mom wants to go to sleep and kick her.

I hear Caleb on the monitor saying, "poo poo diaper," so I'd better go check and see if it's a false alarm or not. I hope so. ;-)


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