Accepting with humbleness

Friends! Hello!! It’s been over a month since I posted. What!! In that month I’ve been swimming through laundry, diaper changes, sibling rivalry, a husband that is often working away with a custom crew, paying bills, growing my business, some canning, and trying to play catch up with farm records. I know I’m not alone 🙂 A lady at the park asked me how I do it with 5. I said “with God’s grace”. And I meant every word! Whether you have none, one or two, or 11, relying on God is key to living life!

Some photos…img_6052 Building a pen for chickens. img_6122 Preparing “Ole Reddy” for the fair. There was lots of interesting sprints and strength training exercise she gave the men around here 🙂img_6135My sweet girl has really been testing me lately! I think it may have to do with a certain new someone 🙂 img_6143I can’t believe how Darian looks here! Just a few short weeks ago, and now he is so chunky!! img_6156The cats stayed around, which speaks greatly about their resilience 😉 Their 9 lives may have been reduced to a lower number. Hahaha!img_6163In his Daddy’s arms. img_6166Would you look at him!? Honestly, I already forget how tiny he was!! And the days of running him to get his bilirubin checked seem like a lifetime away. He doesn’t sleep nearly as much, and loves to be held, but he is, and I say this quietly lest I change things :), my best nighttime sleeper!!img_6167Sweet babes of mine ❤img_6168She loves him dearly, just not always in the nicest of ways 🙂img_6192These 2! Cute like their daddy 😉

Back again, after writing the above part weeks ago.It’s high time to finish it! 🙂

img_6251 img_6256A few pictures from one of our corn days. And crazy Jenna 🙂

So are you wondering about my title? Accepting with humbleness.. It’s something I’ve had good practice doing lately. And it’s not always the easiest thing for me either.

I post this not for pity, for we all have our struggles. But this summer was not the easiest. After my hospital stay and Darian’s birth, the bills started rolling in. Rather large ones. And we had previously dropped our insurance, and we were soon expecting , so even if we had signed up with someone, because I was already pregnant, I wasn’t able to get coverage.

We accepted responsibility for this, but it did not make it any easier, when you see those big bills. I will be completely transparent, and tell you that sometimes I’d sit down to pay bills, see the balance in the checkbook, and end up in tears. Added to the stress was the very low milk price, that every dairy farmer will understand. When you are working hard, and can barely cover the feed bills, etc., sometimes you wonder why you do what you do?

God was teaching me something through it all. For when we are weak, He is strong! I realized that I relied entirely too much on the money in the bank. On being at a comfortable place in life. And just when I’d think, How is this going to work,God showed up. He showed up in the blessing of  meals, babysitting, etc. He showed up in monetary gifts from family and friends, so much more than we deserved!! He showed up when I went to the mailbox, and discovered an envelope with a $100 bill and no name. I still don’t know who gave it, but if they only knew how it touched our hearts!! He showed up when I started sharing about some amazing supplements we are taking, and I was able to earn some money on the side. Sometimes just when I felt so discouraged, He sent someone my way. They helped me, and I could help them. How wonderful is that?! I am so grateful for answered prayers! I write this in tears, because in a matter of a few months, we were able to pay off all our hospital bills, because of God’s grace, and the help of those who cared about us. Friends, God cares! I can not emphasize that enough! If you are walking through a valley, give it to Him! And do your best, the best you can do, and wait on Him! I know so many that have been in the valley, and still are, and I can’t begin to understand. But if I can say one thing, it is that if you ask Him, He will walk through it with you!

I was at a seminar last Saturday, and the speaker encouraged us to wake up each day with a question. “Who can I add value to today?” Friends, that is powerful and amazing!! Do it! Even when you don’t want to! Because when we look outside of ourself, outside of our struggles, God can use us in amazing ways!!

BE blessed, Be humble, Be kind, Be amazing!img_6246

You know you’re a mom…

When you return to a room 3 times before you actually remember the reason you went there in the 1st place.

When you reheat your coffee pretty much every. single. time. 🙂

When you find $45.00 of your cash in their toy cash register. Yes, this happened. And on the bright side, it was like a present to myself when I found it 🙂

When your child is telling you exactly what they think is going to happen, and you say “Who died and made you the boss?” Ok, maybe mature mothers don’t say that, but I did. The response from my 4 yr. old was, “God did” Ok then. 🙂20160723_153658When you feel too busy to edit photos for your blog. Or you just don’t care 🙂

When you put the children to bed and eat that bedtime snack in peace. No interruptions. Can I get an AMEN?! 😉

When you become a topnotch referee.20160724_153318When the poor baby gets passed around from one set of arms to the next. Some arms are nicer than others, haha 🙂

When you’re busy, and didn’t cook up a full course meal, and resort to a good old fire to feed your crew 🙂20160719_183824

When exercise consists of lunges to save a child, dashes to catch a child, weight lifting to pick up a child, you get the drift 🙂20160722_200301And maybe walks that involve weaving strollers 🙂

When needing a moment finds you in a corner somewhere stuffing chocolate in your mouth. I’ve never done this, of course! 😉

Being a mom also means endless hugs, snuggles, baby sweetness, “I love yous”, goodnight kisses, and a whole lot of joy! I wouldn’t trade it for anything, even on the tough days!20160724_151000

If you care too, leave me a comment to add to this “You know you’re a mom” theme 🙂

Baby Days

We are soaking up the baby days here. Many fights over him, timers being used so everyone gets a turn ;), etc.IMG_5954 IMG_5964He spent time on the biliblanket, and for a week I took him to get his levels checked. Every time the nurses would see me walk in, they’d say “Not again!” 🙂 I felt the same way. Poor baby had marks all over his heels. But after staying on the blanket for 3 days, he came off that, and his levels slowly came down. IMG_5946 IMG_5952He looked like a little glowworm with it on. He did really well, even though it had to be uncomfortable. I was thankful he wasn’t too fussy, because that would have been wearying! And that thumb in the mouth! I can’t handle the cuteness! 🙂IMG_5936 IMG_5994Those sleepy smiles..IMG_5943Tired boys ❤IMG_6001Bath time. The children crowd around, till I ask for space 🙂 Or on occasion, lose my temper. Yes, I do that way too often 😦20160628_173041These are days that fly past in a blur of feedings, diaper changes, and the care of a family. Days that I want to hold tight to, and not forget. Those baby grunts, the way he pushes his little butt out :), the baby smell. All of it.20160714_154743Baby clothes and the way they smell. IMG_5958A friend that stopped in to meet baby.20160703_155624 20160713_142954When I look at his little toes and fingers, so perfectly formed, I can’t help but be amazed at the miracle of it all!20160717_073620I took this picture this morning with my phone, when we were both feeling sleepy. His cheeks are starting to fill out a bit 🙂 He is 4 weeks old today, and tomorrow was my due date. I’m so glad he’s here already 🙂 Babies are just the best!

May you be blessed with a good week!

 

And Baby Makes 5

Just a quick post for those of you who may not have seen my Instagram or Facebook..

Last Sunday, June 19th, Father’s Day, we welcomed Darian Kent into our family. He came 4 weeks early, and gave us a whole new experience 🙂 We are smitten and ever so blessed!!20160619_193045 20160620_185756IMG_5901The homecoming 🙂IMG_591220160620_123251Devan had only a few minutes to hold him before he left for camp. He was so happy to be able to see his little brother before he left 🙂IMG_5903_edited-1IMG_5905_edited-1She “READS” to him 😉IMG_5911_edited-1He is blessed with loads of kisses and cuddles, and fights over who holds him next. And meanwhile the mom tries to recuperate and keep her cool, and soak in that baby sweetness 🙂20160621_193257And we are thankful ❤

Hospital Chronicles

This was not how I expected the last weeks to go. Laying in a hospital bed, hooked up to monitors, an IV dripping into my veins. Nurses and Drs. going in and out , questions, more questions, another ultrasound. And a great big weight on my shoulders as the Dr. informed me this would most likely be a 2 week stay. I’d like to say I took it all well. But, I’m pregnant. Very pregnant and hormonal 🙂 So there were tears. And the feeling of how is this going to go down. But most importantly, baby was happy and kicking as usual, so that was a wonderful blessing!

The next few paragraphs will include bits of my journaling I did while in the hospital, along with some photos.

day 2 ~ I’m sitting in my room at the antepartum unit, and writing in this journal that was made by some sweet volunteers, and packaged in a little bag with a pen, and some tissues. My nurse from labor and delivery, Amanda, wheeled me over. She is so sweet! I had to hug her before she left. I’m going to miss her 🙂 The thought of staying in here overwhelms me a bit, but I know it’s best for baby.

Breakfast

Breakfast

Day 3 ~ It looks gorgeous outside, but they tell me it feels cold. Missing my kiddos this morning, but they did come in last night, which was great! And Dale is coming down to see me at lunch, and bringing me food 🙂 He’s been doing such a great job, but I know he misses not having me at home. The Dr. was in again today, and says if there are no changes till Monday, I can probably go home!20160609_142027Poor hubby is exhausted 🙂 Notice the treat he brought me 🙂20160608_194114 20160611_120423These two fought over being in bed with me. Looks like I lost 🙂

Day 4 ~ Today felt a bit long because I had no visitors. Dale was going to come down with the children, but family was coming to mulch for us. It makes me feel humbled, but also blessed!! I heard the lullabies playing at least 4 times today. They play them whenever a baby is born. I’m praying for a good night of sleep. Last night I couldn’t get comfortable between baby moving and restless legs. And there was a sweet baby that cried most of the night. I was wishing I could take a turn with him/her since I couldn’t sleep anyway 🙂20160610_181042I could always hear the helicopter when it came and left. And sometimes I caught a quick glimpse of it.20160611_132409My view from my window. And that’s my family walking down there 🙂20160610_100556My bedside table.. 20160609_221527Strawberry pie from my sis. Oh so yummy! 🙂

Day 5 ~ For some reason, I didn’t journal this day. Dale brought the children down around 10:30, and they ate lunch with me there.  I think this was also the day I was paid a visit from one of my labor and delivery nurses. Jill is so nice, and we visited for close to 1/2 hr. I love how great the nurses here are! I also had a nurse named Jenna, which was funny 🙂 And we talked about our families, and being moms, etc. These nurses work hard, and should be appreciated for all of their hard work!

Day 6 ~ Tuning into the church service, and the tears just come again. The song “Blessed Jesus hold my hand, I need Thee every hour”, speaks into my heart.

And the devotional, whether you are going through a mountain or valley, “We’ve got the Power in the name of Jesus!” I admit this week felt like a bit of a valley for me, even though I have so much to be grateful for! So through my occasional discouragement and tears, I can’t help but think of all the good things I have been blessed with this week.

  1. The wonderful husband God gave me, who supports me and loves me well.
  2. My sweet children and their big smiles when they come in the door to see me.
  3. Family, and the way they pitch in. Food, babysitting, doing laundry, mulching our many flowerbeds, visiting me, and so many more things behind the scenes. Loving and supporting us.
  4. Friends, and the way they care. Text messages, calls, words of encouragement.
  5. Many prayers on our behalf.
  6. The kindest nurses. Their cheery faces, waiting on me like a queen :), doing unpleasant things with a smile. They blessed my heart! I feel like I learned to know some of them, and will miss them when I leave.
  7. The meal delivery people, so sweet and cheerful. One guy sang me a song when he heard my name 🙂 I’m sure most of you heard the song, “Jolene, Jolene” 🙂 He just loved singing 🙂 And he even said he’ll pray for me and baby.20160612_124256
  8. Drs. that care, cleaning ladies keeping my room clean, the security guard that loved the Lord, and encouraged Dale and I as parents as he escorted us through the hospital to the place we needed to be.I know I’m forgetting some things, and the list could go on 🙂 Discouragement may come to us at times, but no matter what we face, God is there! He shoulders our load, and encourages us, even with details that may seem small.20160612_105626This photo was on Sunday, my last full day there. I was able to get a wheelchair ride outside, feel that warm sun on my face, sit by a beautiful garden with a lovely water feature. Our children fought over who was pushing me, ran around sticking their hands in the water, and generally acted like they don’t get out much 🙂 But they enjoyed it, I know that! My inlaws came to visit too, and my mother-in-law must have read my mind, because she brought me a donut 😉 Soo yummy!20160612_11093120160612_11074420160612_110557Now I’m home, and it feels so nice! We have been abundantly blessed with meals for this week of not doing too much! And today my sisters and mom come to help make jelly. Baby is currently behaving, and so we continue to pray and wait 🙂 Thanks again for all of you that blessed our lives! We are grateful, and so very blessed!

Memories

It’s another dreary day. After days of this rainy, cloudy weather, my mood can head towards melancholy. Pregnancy hormones have my emotions all over the place. Today, after reading a Caring Bridge post about a young mother whose cancer seems to be winning it’s battle in her, I couldn’t help but cry. And wonder why? Why is it her, and her family that must go through this? Why a young mother? It doesn’t seem fair that I’m debating what to make for supper, while someone else is going through so much pain.

Right now I know of at least 3 people with cancer in advanced stages. And I wonder, what if it was me? What if it was someone in my family?

Life can be put into perspective so quickly when we think of how quickly life can change.

It made my mind wander as to how  I will be remembered when I’m gone? Will others say I took time for them? Did I lend a listening ear? Did I have a servant heart? Could they see Jesus in me?

But it’s my family who I think of most. My husband and children. Will they say I was good to them? Or will they remember me as grouchy, complaining, and discontent?

I am one whose patience level needs a lot of work. Being pregnant lowers my tolerance level, unfortunately 😦 I’ve lost count of the times I’ve lost my temper lately. Bedtime is especially trying. Everyone is tired, but the children seem to get a second wind, and it always feels like a 3 ring circus. Last night I lost my patience with one of them, and spoke very impatiently and unkindly, and caused the tears to come. As I look back at that moment, I think why couldn’t I have been more loving? I do not want my children to remember me losing my cool, and lashing out at them with my words. Each and every moment with them is a memory in the making. Am I making those memories good?

It’s funny the things you remember from childhood. Snippets here and there. A smell, a tone of voice, the way someone spoke to you. I pray that when my children get older, and look back, that the good memories are more than any bad ones they may have.

I’ll close with some pictures. Little tidbits of everyday life that we are blessed to have.

Our dog can sit so hilarious :)

Our dog can sit so hilarious 🙂

Our gentle pony..

Our gentle pony..

IMG_5816 IMG_5832IMG_5829Sisters ❤

I love seeing baby ducks around again!

I love seeing baby ducks around again!

IMG_5809Isaiah 40:8 “The grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of our God endures forever.” NIV

Keep the faith, friends! And make good memories along the way.

Phone pictures and Ramblings

I haven’t felt like writing lately. The urge comes and goes. I’ve also had a break from taking photos, which is ok with me. In fact, the break will most likely continue with the arrival of our baby. That’s life. Ebbs and flows, things changing.

This was my project on Saturday. I’ve been putting it off, and thought I best get crackin’ 🙂 I don’t enjoy painting, so I felt a sense of accomplishment when I was done. Only about 5 more doors to go on this big farmhouse.

Before…20160416_151255

 

After…20160420_185905This was my afternoon snack today. Well, the more healthy one 🙂 This baby makes me hungry!20160420_154714I’ve been sitting more than I usually do today, because of strong Braxton Hicks that don’t want to leave. So it’s extra calcium, and trying to stay off my feet a bit, per my midwife’s instructions. This baby wants to keep it interesting 🙂 My discomfort seems mild though, when I think of the young mother from church who is battling cancer, and dealing with pain. Life just seems so unfair at times, but God sees the bigger picture. And I’m so thankful we can give our worries and troubles to Him!

A Saturday night at home..20160416_184351I always treasure a break from cooking.

Jenna made sure Zoey didn’t go hungry 🙂20160416_190504Our supper from last night. I love grilling weather!20160419_181054Devan was home from school this week. Bronchitis, fever, and some throwing up. On this picture, he was feeling a bit better. Apparently, their Daddy’s phone was pretty interesting 🙂20160418_121819This morning a warm little body crawled into my bed, and snuggled up tight, wrapping her fingers in my hair. She loves her snuggles with me yet, and often gives my belly kisses (for the baby) 🙂 I sure do treasure those times, because her strong will and independence sure can be frustrating! This was a night that she told her brother she can feed the calves. So he gladly left her. The mom had to explain to him that she is not responsible enough to know who gets what. I may have to keep an eye on this chore handing off thing 🙂20160418_161508Today their was milk spilled over big sister’s dress right before it was time to leave for school. As well as all over the floor. There was wash to do, and toys to pick up, and dishes to wash. There was fighting, and back talk. And bad attitudes. From the Mom and children. A pretty normal day. I need more gratefulness in my heart for the mundane.

Should I be worried that my son has OCD? This was done of his own free will 🙂20160418_175413He’s definitely got some crazy organization skills 🙂

That’s a wrap, folks. Have a great rest of the week! And if you have the awesome springlike weather we’ve been having, soak up that goodness 🙂

 

God sees you

I write this from one woman to another. We are all different. And yet we are somewhat the same.

Dear mom at the supermarket, with a baby on your hip, and a toddler throwing a tantrum. Your cart is full, and you struggle to maintain your composure, wandering what everyone thinks of you. He sees you. He cares!

Her friends get married, one by one, and she wonders if the right guy will ever come along for her. She tries to be content in being single, yet she still wonders if maybe someday… God knows her heart’s desire. And He cares!

She shops absentmindedly. Her eyes see all the babies, and her heart yearns for one of her own. When she sees a child being treated roughly, she wanders why God allows someone who doesn’t seem to love their child, have children, while her womb remains empty. But God knows her aching heart’s cry. And He cares!

The sink is overflowing with dishes, and laundry is piled in baskets and tabletops, waiting to be folded. She hustles around, trying to put things in order, and steps on a stray lego that her son has scattered across the floor. Pain, and a sharp word slips from her tongue. He cares!

She runs into the store, hair a mess and clothing rumpled, to grab some medicine for her feverish baby. She sees the judgemental looks, and wishes she could tell them she was up most of the night, and she’s just too tired to care. Why are people so uncaring? But He sees, and He cares!

She sits in her wheelchair, the pain her constant companion. She wonders what good she is to anyone. Why did God let this happen? But her faith keeps her strong.  And while she sits, she prays for needs around her. She is a prayer warrior!  God sees her. He hears each prayer, and He cares!

The children are fighting again. Loud, obnoxious words being flung back and forth. She wants to pretend she is somewhere all alone where it is peace and quiet. But she rallies. Discipline is given, and she squares her shoulders for the next task. God sees her weariness. He cares!

Her to do list feels long. Clothes to wash, food to make, house to clean, bills to pay, and on it goes. But she says a prayer for strength. He hears her pleas, and He cares!

Sometimes she wishes they didn’t live on a farm. Other people are always going on vacation. They aren’t tied down to the daily chores that a farm brings. But she thinks of all the times her family gets to share together. The blessing of working together, of seeing new life come into the world, and she tries to be content and thankful. He cares!

She walks the hospital hall. She takes care of her patients, tenderly seeing to their needs. Her legs feel like they’ve walked miles, and they have. God sees her servant heart. He cares!

The cancer left her with a bald head, nausea, and a frame that’s much too thin. She longs to be at home with her Heavenly Father. She’s tired of the battle. God sees each tear she cries, and He cares!

She wonders if anyone sees her sadness. She longs for a hug, a word of comfort, but everyone seems so busy with themselves, they don’t even notice. Her heart aches for a listening ear. God knows, and he cares!

The list could go on. I don’t know where you are at this point in your life. But I know the One who holds each of us in His hands. And His hands are more than capable, and so strong. God will never leave us or forsake us. Trust Him 🙂

Be blessed!

Different Things..

How are you all? Doing well, I hope 🙂 I am just so thankful to feel good again! You know pregnancy can do a number to our bodies, but I have to say, right now I am feeling great, with the occasional discomfort 🙂

Dale was hauling manure most of the night, and the boys wanted to get up at 5:30 to ride along. The girls and I started our morning a bit slow. We did have to persuade a calf back into the calf barn that was out, but that’s farm life for you. Full of the unexpected 🙂

We are all anxious for Spring around here! We have been seeing robins, blue jays, cardinals, red winged blackbirds, and I’ve seen a pair of ducks too, so I’m hoping to see some babies again 🙂

Baby is active. I love feeling the kicks and movements! It is a small reminder of the greatness of this little miracle. A blessing from our Father! I have been diagnosed with placenta previa, which is cause for a little concern, but I try not too lift heavy or too much, and we will keep praying for the placenta to move, or I will need a C-section. Not what I want, but God is in control, and we will keep trusting Him! It is so neat to see baby on the ultrasound, moving around 🙂 And no, we don’t know what we are having! Choosing to be surprised 🙂

My family and I have started taking Plexus products, which is something I really wasn’t planning to do. But Dale wanted to jump on board, and I just kept hearing so much good from it, that we decided to try the products. They do have a great multivitamin and probiotic, and 2 of the children are on the probiotic. Tristan always complains of bellyache, and I want to see if it helps. He also has psoriasis in his scalp, and they say it has helped some folks with that, so we’ll see 🙂 Dale and I both love the biocleanse! It does several things, but one of the big things is helping to keep your system moving and regular, and we both love that about it. I’m curious if any readers take the products? I know there are many strong opinions about Plexus, but I do think just like with anything that you love or makes you feel better, you want to share it with others 🙂 I could use some help in not being so timid about sharing 🙂 I’m the same way about sharing Christ with someone. It’s easier just to smile and be friendly, and keep moving. Another thing to work at continually!

Our weekend looks to be full, but I’m glad to be able to go away, and feel like going away too! I got to spend a day with friends in Juniata County the other week. We shopped antique stores and goodwill, and had fun just being together 🙂 Friends are something I could not do without!

And a few pictures from around here.. Especially for our Haiti people 🙂

Snow pictures..IMG_5406 IMG_5410 IMG_5411 IMG_5419 Devan’s favorite farm vehicle to drive right now 🙂 IMG_5470 IMG_5473 IMG_5492My helper..IMG_5449

Well, that’s all for now. Have a good weekend! And thanks for reading!