Monday, December 31, 2012

Girls Night

I will get back to our regularly scheduled Christmas posts very soon, but first I have to share our girls night with you. I got to spend the night with this cutie while we were at PawPaw and MiMi's house.
Usually the only time SK sleeps with me is when she is sick, very sick and I need to be close to care for her throughout the night.  This time though was entirely different, this was just for fun.
It didn't take long for sister to fall asleep once we went to bed.  It was after 10 o'clock though so I really don't blame her.  Christmas vacation takes a lot out of a girl. I watched her for a while after she fell asleep, her breathing was quiet and regular.  Just as sweet as watching her fall asleep was waking up with her the next morning. Well rested and ready for the day, SK always wakes up so happy.  I was there to see that first stretch and that first smile.  I watched those big brown sleepy eyes squint and blink as she woke up.  I heard her breathing become louder and louder as it does when she's awake.  I rubbed her back and shoulders listening to her little sighs of brief relief from tight muscles...there constant and beaming was that smile.  In the midst of all that is going on there is always that smile.

Happy New Year!!

Monday, December 24, 2012

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas!!
Isaiah 9:6 "For unto us a child is born, unto us a Son is given; And the government will be upon His shoulder.  And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace."

Friday, December 21, 2012

Things money can't buy

Observing a moment of silence as a nation as the bells toll 26 times in Newtown, CT marking a week since these innocent lives were taken.  My heart hurts deeply for these families, there is nothing to say to ease their pain.  There will be a different feeling in our home over Christmas break this year.  A gentle, grateful spirit as we deal with the quarrels that will inevitably arise between brothers.  Less irritation as I clean up the kitchen that seems to get more filthy every minute they are home...they never stop eating you know.  The dirty clothes on the floor, the Legos strewn about their room, the globs of toothpaste left in the bathroom sink and the shoes left here, there and everywhere will only comfort me with the knowledge that they are here...home.

Their laughter, squeals, hugs and just their presence in our home is a blessing.  It's the regular, everyday things I am grateful for...watching a movie together, sitting down to supper together, playing games...being intentional and in the moment in this sweet season with them.  A bit more love, patience, forgiveness and gratitude is what is needed this year.  Our Savior demonstrated that as he humbly came to live among us.  He came not with all the pomp and circumstance worthy of such a King, but as a baby born in a Bethlehem stable.  He came with love to serve and ultimately save us from our sins with His death and resurrection.
 Merry Christmas from our family to yours, may Jesus be at the center of all we do this season.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012


As I drove my daughter to school on Monday morning, I found myself overcome with tears.  The closer I got to our primary school the harder they came down.  I took Sophie Kate into school that morning as I do each morning that she goes to school and I walk the halls with these K-2nd graders.  It fell hard on me Monday morning.  I have a preschooler and a 1st grader at our school and I was just overcome.  

I know that sweet age so well.  I have a six year old son.  I know the smiles and silliness, the laughter and love that they bring to life.  What I don't know is how it feels to lose one of them and I pray to God I never do.  I am heartsick and heartbroken for the families of Sandy Hook Elementary.  

I have a five year old daughter with special needs as well. In dark times like these I am thankful that she will never know the evil in this world.  My boys will have to face the realities of this selfish world too soon, but little SK will never be aware of such atrocities.  

I couldn't wait for my children to get home to me last Friday afternoon.  I just needed to put my hands on them. I didn't allow the kids to hear any information regarding the school shootings.  I just want them to be kids.  Yes, we have since talked about it with our oldest to answer some of his questions, but only as they are able to handle it.  

We spent quality time together as a family this past weekend with my thoughts constantly going to the families in CT and the tremendous loss they are experiencing.  I knew nothing more to do than to pray for them and hold my four close.  

A family in our church hosted a Christmas party this weekend for special needs children and their families. This is the second year they have done this and it is such a sweet, tender time together.  
Santa insists that Sophie Kate sit in his lap.  He wants her out of her wheelchair and with him.  He speaks so kindly to her as only Santa can, I'm not sure she will ever get too big to sit in Santa's lap.
Thankful for these moments with my children, may I never take them for granted.

2 Timothy 1:7 "For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind."

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Their Prayers

I love to hear parents tell me of their children praying for Sophie Kate.  There is nothing like the simplicity of a child's prayer.  It's so pure and genuine and heart felt, so in the moment.  I feel like my prayers have a hidden agenda at times (of course not hidden to God, I am only fooling myself if I think that).  My selfishness takes over and I want God to do what I want over His sovereign will.  I have different angles and different thoughts running through my mind and I may not give the attention to prayer that I need to.    However, listening to a child pray for another child is different entirely.  Their words are so simple, why do we try to make it so complex?  Their intentions are so pure, why do we try to muddy it up with our own agendas?  

I have had people tell me of my boys asking prayer for their sister at church when she is sick.  My sister has shared with me about the prayers of her children (my nephew and niece) for SK.  A fellow special needs parent told me of her typical son praying for SK a couple of weeks ago when she was so sick.  This young man's brother has passed away, he misses him greatly and sends up prayers for his brother's friend who is struggling with illness.  A friend recently shared of her daughter's regular and steadfast prayers for SK's health, even through her surgery last fall.  I am so humbled that these little hearts would be turned and burdened for our girl.  I wonder what God thinks and feels when one of those little ones bows their head in prayer.  

God's Word tells us in Mark 10:13-16, "People were bringing little children to Jesus for Him to place His hands on them, but the disciples rebuked them.  When Jesus saw this, He was indignant.  He said to them, 'Let the little children come to me and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these.'  Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.  And He took the children in His arms, placed His hands on them and blessed them."

They truly are all precious in His sight.  Thank you friends for sharing the prayer of your little ones with me, such a blessing.    

Monday, December 10, 2012


My boys joined me in worship service this Sunday.  I realize that may sound a bit weird but usually they are in Children's church while the grownups are in worship service or "big church" as it is more commonly known.  I appreciate that they have a worship service more kid friendly and tailored to them and all their wiggles and giggles, but it is also a very nice change of pace for us all to worship together.  Because of their ages now, it is a more enjoyable experience, more worship and not as much work (as I remember it).   

My youngest stood on the pew seat beside me and I could hear him singing along with all the songs, such beautiful words and music to my ears.  I think I am too used to sitting in worship service without them and it shouldn't be that way.  They need to see their parents in worship and I loved having them with me.  It was a very meaningful morning.  

I have found that I am coming into contact more and more with others who are hurting or going through difficulty. Maybe I am actually being a bit more aware or sensitive to it, but I know it is all for a reason.  They may not be hurting or going through the same difficulty that I am but I am moved just the same.  Believe me, that is progress for me because for so long there was no one that could possibly hurt as bad as I did unless they to had a child like my daughter.  All other hurts in this world paled in comparison to mine and I had it way worse than anyone else.  

Let me tell you what a work God has done in that area of my life.  It is nothing I have done, but with patience and time God has changed my outlook and my heart.  I will never say that I have arrived, but I can see progress in that area of my life that I have prayed over for so long.  I hope this is all coming out right.  I have said before that I don't want all that has happened in our family to be in vain.  As a follower of Christ I am called to more than just surviving it, I am to comfort others with the comfort I have been given. I am to listen, support, pray, serve and share what God has done in the life of our family...what He has done in my life. In a place where I believed no joy could ever live again, God has placed healing, love, relationship, joy and even laughter once again.  That is what my Christmas will be full cup runneth over. 

Thursday, December 6, 2012


The short version as to how we came about getting Frank is that we finally wore Chad down.  The longer version is that the boys have been wanting a dog for some time to which we have continually said "no," up until the time that they wore me down and I decided to join forces with them, it was much easier that way, ha ha.
 Frank, with Cooper on the way to his new home

Frank hit it off with everyone right away. 

We went back and forth for a while trying to decide between a big outside dog or a small inside dog.  I think SK finally made that decision a bit easier for us because we knew we wanted a cuddle companion for her too.  

I think we found the perfect fit...

We took him with us one Saturday to the boys' flag football games.  He wore himself completely out and rode all the way back to the car sitting with SK in her lap in her stroller. He's too cute!
photo by Brad Curfman

Seeing how much the boys enjoy him and how sweet he is with Sophie Kate has made it all worth it.
photo by Brad Curfman

A big thanks to my brother-in-law Brad for the last two pictures.  He has some serious camera skills and captured our little buddy just perfectly.

Sophie Kate is feeling much better and is back in school this week.  Thanks for all the prayers, concern and help last week.  She's definitely weak, but is looking more and more like her smiley self each day.