Last post of the year! :)

I missed posting this at Christmas, so here is our family,lovely self timer shot and all 🙂 Really, it involved a lot of exercise for the mom, as I ran back and forth so many times, the children were done, and finally said “Ok, that’s a wrap!”, and we get what we get 🙂 So maybe next year I should hire someone 🙂img_6651_edited-1As I shared before, this year was tough, and yet full of blessings, and we grow more when we have to struggle, do we not? I am looking to the new year, new goals, and I’m excited for what God has in store!! One of my goals is to do something nice for somebody every day. Whether it involves something big or little. I can tell you that God has been working on me, to nudge me to do more, because I have so much. To be honest, some days I feel like I don’t have much. But that is the devil’s tactics. And how can I learn contentment if I always look at those that seem to have it better?  I’m a work in progress, and still fail miserably some days! 🙂

Our oldest is 14! She enjoys school, her friends, holding her baby brother, and time with her horse. Cleaning and barn chores are not her favorite thing, but she is a big help to me!!

Our oldest son is 11, and he has been such a great helper lately! He loves to get up at 3:30 a.m. to help his dad milk, and we have to limit that to 3 or 4 times a week, because he does need sleep to handle school and it’s challenges! I also love how he has been making his bed very neatly each morning without me telling him to 🙂 Of course he is a normal child, thinking he knows pretty much, and fighting his siblings, but we definitely are seeing some positive changes 🙂

Next in line is our “farm boy”. He is 8, 9 next month, and still loves his cows, playing farm, and getting dirty 🙂 He is a strong willed child, and hard to handle sometimes, yet he has a soft heart. We have seen huge improvements in him with school, and he almost made honor roll! We are so grateful for the supplements that we are certain are helping him, and I love listening to him read, and hearing him talk about school!

Next in line is our spitfire 🙂 She turned 5 in Nov., and is full of energy and creativity. She was “the baby” for so long, that she is still a bit jealous of her baby brother, but she sure does love him! Her will is strong, and she is so independent that it drives her momma crazy sometimes, but who likes boredom anyways?? 🙂

And then our newest blessing. He is 6 mo. already! The children still fight over him multiple times a day 🙂 He is chubby, and full of smiles, and recently started rolling. He has a cheering crew for everything he does 🙂

We are blessed! My prayer for you all is that 2017 is a year of new growth, stronger relationships, and full of blessings from our heavenly Father!!

Thanks to all my followers who check in on my little space here! I appreciate it!

Bring on 2017!! 🙂

Remembering

It’s Sunday morning. Normally I would be at church. Instead I’m at home with a child who isn’t feeling the best. The wind is blowing away outside, there is a load of bedding in the washer because Sick Child :), Darian is snoozing, and to be honest, it feels quite cozy 😉 I’m sad that I’ll miss the Christmas dinner we had today. In fact, I was definitely feeling some self pity this morning. But this is life. So I will do things today that I have not taken the time for lately 🙂 Writing this post, putting some pictures into an album, designing our Christmas card (which by the way I do not like, because we did it in 10 minutes with a self timer 🙂 ), and maybe some reading, a nap, and some extra baby cuddles. And that’s what today’s post is about. My babe.

On a Sunday 5 short months ago, I woke up to use the bathroom, and thought my water broke. It didn’t take long till I knew it did 🙂 I had been home from the hospital 6 days, after a week was spent there to hold off labor, in hopes that baby would have more time to develop those lungs. A week that really tested me, and grew my faith. I was 36 weeks, and baby was coming, ready or not. A call to my midwife, and advice to head for the hospital, even though I wasn’t contracting, because this whole pregnancy had its issues 🙂 Waking up hubby (who got bug eyed :)), scrambling to find someone to help do the morning milking. And a rush trying to pack my bag, call Mom, and get myself together. I had only 2 hrs. of sleep, and I remember feeling like I couldn’t even think what to pack. Realizing that I did not even have a newborn boys sleeper. It was my 1st time birthing at a hospital. It was my 5th child, and yet in a way it all felt new and scary.

We headed to the hospital around 4 and arrived at approximately 4:30. Still not contracting. The decision was made to put me on a drip, and get contractions going. And thus it began. I was hoping to have him in a few hours. 🙂 But my body said different. I would contract, and they would slowly start going away, then my dosage would go up, and they would start again, and die off again, and on and on it went 🙂 We walked the halls, chatted with my midwife, who by the way, got her sleep disturbed, and still came in to the hospital to be with us. All day. And we tried to snooze a bit. And up, up went the dosage. And contractions started getting worse. I like to say that this baby wanted to come before he was supposed to, but then he changed his mind, haha 🙂 My labor was not horrible. Just long. The last hour or so was hard. It is all a blur, as many of you know. That bit where all your focus is on that end goal. Trying to get through the pain. And I remember the back massages from my midwife, the squeezes to my hand from hubby, the praying , “God get me through”.  There was such a neat moment, when a favorite nurse I had when I came in in premature labor at 34 weeks, came in to start her shift right as I was nearing delivery. I don’t even think I acknowledged her much because I was in too much pain, but I remember thinking how God worked. She told me she had heard I was in, but was sure she would miss the birth, because they all knew how far along I was already. She was so surprised to make the delivery 🙂

A few pushes later, with the Dr. barely in the room, and he was here! Crying. “It’s a boy!”. More crying, from baby and the mom and dad 🙂 And our world was changed again. Darian Kent, 6lbs., 13 oz. Beautiful baby boy.

There was still pain to bear, some concern, and me thinking please let it be done. I remember clinging to him, trying to shut out the pain from what I knew was necessary. As I look back, I marvel at how God works, and sustains us . I can say every bit of it was worth it! Every bit! It is why we as mothers choose to go through it all again. 🙂

I still get emotional as I remember. And as I look at how big my boy is getting. I remember how he slept so much during the day. How I woke him to feed him because he had high bilirubin levels. How I had to take him again and again to get his little heel pricked. The wonderful meals that came. That baby smell. A new normal.

Thank you for taking this little trip down memory lane with me 🙂 I would love to hear stories from you, my readers 🙂 So interesting how each child is different! And here are a few pictures of my baby now. He no longer resembles that skinny little dark haired baby boy 🙂img_20161115_145715img_20161020_13351320161120_093938I snapped this one as he snoozed this morning. Can you tell I love sleeping pictures? 🙂

Enjoy your Sunday, friends!!

 

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

A Farmer’s Life…

.. with some opinions from the farmer’s wife 🙂

I think some folks are of the opinion that farm life is a magical way of living. They can come spend a week here and see 😉 While I love that we are blessed to live on a farm, there are days right now when I wonder why we do what we do. Perhaps my pregnant self is voicing it’s opinion. It happens way too often 🙂 But when your walk is more like a waddle, and the contractions and tightness are present more than not, and you can’t see your feet, you may get a bit irritable at times. Just saying 🙂

These past weeks have been rain and more rain, with farmers trying to get crops in between showers. It’s been busy. And when I say busy, I mean you may or may not sleep every night. I’m talking about the guys here. I have slept every night, some are just shorter than others 🙂 But when the husbands are busy, the wives and children must fill in more. There have been days that my body feels so weary, I can almost cry with relief when the children are all tucked in bed for the night. But it’s what you do, because it needs doing.

I think God was speaking to me in my devotions today when I read this verse. Yes God, I heard you 🙂2016-05-20 18.52.10I was a tad ungrateful for the busyness lately 🙂 And it hurts a bit to work so hard, with milk prices so low. But God provides, and though I forget sometimes, and complain, I am grateful for His love. He shows up in little ways, ways that we don’t even realize right away. Then you look back, and think, wow! He does care so much!

20160516_163503 20160516_163448These 2 have been doing so well at pitching in and helping at milking time. Sure, they grumble sometimes, and complain about their aching backs, but I have been blessed with their desire to help. They know I’m not supposed to carry milkers right now, and if I grab one, I usually hear, “Mom, you know what the midwife said” 😉 It makes me feel good that they care!

We absolutely enjoyed the sunshine these last 2 days, but I’m glad for the rain tomorrow, because that should mean a nap for the farmers 🙂 And maybe the farmers wife 🙂

Our supper tonight was easy and tasty, because yes, the farmer needed to eat and head for the fields. Again 🙂2016-05-20 19.59.02Lord, may we remember to be thankful for every day, even the tough ones!

Hope you all have a good weekend!

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!