Goodbye '08, Hello '09

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

As I sit here and reflect upon the events of 2008, I have so much to be thankful for - good and bad. I decided to compile a list of this year's blessings in honor of such a great year full of up's and down's; high's and low's:

I'm so thankful for...

1. Robby. Of course he tops the list! Every morning, I'm greeted by his bright, little smile and it fills me with pure joy. I can't remember what my life was like before him and I couldn't live without him. I know I've said this before, but I love watching him grow and learn. What have I done to deserve to be his Mama?

2. Matt. Through thick and thin, he still stands beside me. He is the only thing to get me through my spiritual struggles and learning, the pain and exhaustion of labor and parenting, and the heartache of loss and persecution. He is truly my other half because I would be only half a person without him. I'm also thankful that he gets up and goes to work every morning to provide for his family (even though it's sometimes against his will :)).

3. Sanctification and spiritual growth. I have grown so much in the past year, but only by God's Grace and Conviction. I am no where - I repeat - NO WHERE near perfection and I admit that freely, but with every day and every experience, I learn and grow more and more in the Lord. I pray that I am pleasing and glorifying Him always as a wife, a mother, and, most importantly, His servant.

4. The body of Christ. Although we left The River Christian Fellowship this year, I am still thankful for our year spent with them. I am, however, so very thankful to have found the Magic Valley Bible Church. What a great bunch of people and strong teaching! I have learned much through them and am thankful for the friendships we have made there. We're so thankful for your guidance, charity, and prayers!

5. God's provision and strength. I don't know if I have to really explain this one. When I think "there's no possible way", He makes a way. When I am weak, He is strong. God is good.

6. Time with far away family. We were so blessed to be able to visit our family in Colorado and be visited by my parents from North Idaho multiple times this year; all of which brought us closer together.

7. Lessons in faith, humility, and pride. Yep, I fell on my face and messed up a lot this year, but that's no different than any other year, really. The only difference is what I learned from it. I strayed, I doubted, I was proud, and all landed me right on my face before God. Lesson learned.

8. Car issues. Yeah, I'm even thankful for the stupid, cruddy cars we keep ending up with, but I thank God that we have at least one good one at any given time to get us from point A to B.

9. Monster medical bills. Yes, again, I'm thankful. Even though the hospital is reaming us every month, it's proven to us that we can step up and get out of debt and work towards a house and a new car.

10. Family and friends. I am always thankful for the people in our life. Though differences in beliefs and views may have strained our relationships, we're still holding on, God willing. And when it comes to Robby, everyone has been a huge help and support for us. Thank you!

I could probably think of a bunch more, but this is my top ten. As much as I'll miss 2008, I look forward to 2009 with the hope that it will be just as blessed - good or bad. We have so much to look forward to! Possible trips in May and October to visit family once more, Robby turning one, celebrating six years with Matt, and who knows what. Oh, and many, many more blog posts, of course! :)

My prayer is that everyone has a blessed year to come, filled with hope, joy, love, health, prosperity, and success! May God bless and protect you all!

Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

No matter who you are, where you are in life, or what you live for, we would like to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas and a blessed New Year to come!


I posted an entry about a message I received over MySpace, last night, and realized that I was indeed sounding a bit boastful, even though that wasn't my intention. So, for this, I deeply apologize. It wasn't right of me to brag and I'm sorry for setting such a bad example. The message has now been deleted. I hope those of you who read it can forgive me. :)

MORE Gifts!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Yeah, you read right! Yet another knock on the door and more gifts from our church; this time for Robby! Clothes, toys, and books! Unbelievable! This time, I hugged the gift-bearer and thanked her profusely!

Up to My Ears in Blessings!


I'm going to leave that one-worded sentence there because it's the only way I can express how I'm feeling right now.

I just received another knock on my door. I opened it to find one of the Graff girls (an elder family from our church) holding a giftbag. Long story short, we were yet again blessed by the genuine giving kindness of our church family! The contents of the bag were a darling and incredibly soft sheep toy for Robby, homemade gingerbread, pumpkin bread, mint fudge, peanut butter fudge, assorted candy, and a (I assume homemade) ornament (shown). Again, I dropped to my knees in tears and praised God for His wonderous blessings! I am so very thankful for all the kind gestures and love from our church, but I'm having a hard time taking this all in! I have never seen such generosity before! All I can say is...!

I feel terrible that I don't have anything to return these kind gestures.

Christmas Blessings

Well, our wonderful church family has struck again! They came a-knockin' once more with a tote full of food (a whole chicken, potatoes, apples, oranges, rolls, a gallon of milk, etc.), Christmas presents for each of us, and another $25 giftcard from Winco. I started tearing up (as I am again right now) just before Kenny (the guy who was nice enough to drop off both the Thanksgiving and Christmas totes) went to leave. I just wanted to hug him, but I didn't want him to think I was a nut or something. As soon as I closed the door behind him, I dropped to my knees and cried out to God, thanking Him for His wonderful blessings, even when we don't necessarily need them or deserve them. God is good!

Which brings me to my next point. I asked Kenny while he was here, "Isn't there anyone that needs this more than we do? I mean, we're not in that much of need." He told me, "Well, not in our church." "So, we're the poorest ones?" I laughed. "Well...I've been there. I understand." which translated to "Um, yep!". I thought about this later. I never really saw us as "poor". I mean, we don't have a house, a new car, or a lot of cash to waste, but we live within the means that God has provided and we appreciate the things we DO have, especially each other. Even though times do get rough when funds are tight, we aren't any less happy. I guess it's all how you look at it. We may be considered "poor" monetarily and materially, but we are wealthy when it comes to God's grace, love, and mercy and are extremely thankful for our genuine and giving church! Praise God for His many blessings and gifts!

Also, to add to my good day full of blessings, I found out how much we're getting back on our taxes this year. The amount doesn't matter, but thankfully it will be enough to pay off our monster hospital bill and some other bills! Praise again!

"11I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. 12I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. 13I can do everything through him who gives me strength." - Philippians 4:11-13

Winter Roads

This photo was just sent to me from Matt, who is currently near Heyburn, ID. Poor guy has to drive in this junk! While I was on the phone with him this morning, he had to ask the owner for a shovel to be able to move his product in. The weather and roads are horrible, today, so I'm sitting here praying with all my might that everyone stays safe if they have to go out!

Also, my aunt and cousin are driving from Seattle to here tomorrow. Yikes! Here's praying they make it here in one piece for Christmas!

[Edit] Matt just sent me this photo. Makes me really appreciate my nice, warm home!

Five Months Old

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Wow. Again. Wow. Five months? Geesh! Well, he's still trying to crawl, he's mastered rolling around everywhere, he loves his solid foods and has tried sweet potatoes, carrots, bananas, and now peas (which he now likes), and he loves it when you copy him (i.e. noises and facial expressions). It seems like his little personality is coming out more and more every day. I love it!

I also liked this photo of him during this "shoot":This picture sums up Robby right now. What a goof.

Videos Catchup

Monday, December 15, 2008

Here are three more Robby videos. I fell behind on uploading them:

Robby Meets the Christmas Tree

No Likin' the Peas

Snake Baby

Still Alive

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

I was looking at my blog and realized that my last post was almost a week ago. Wow! Apologies for not keeping up! Things have been more hectic than usual it seems. Like I've said before, this time of year is usually crazy for us with all that's going on, but by the Grace of God, we're hanging on and looking toward the new year when things will slow down, again.

No really big Robby updates. He's rolling all over the place and is fascinated by the Christmas tree. He's rolled over to it on a couple occasions to bat at one of the low-hanging ornaments. I nipped that in the bud before he starts to try to topple the tree over and so far, he's stopped. He's still trying to crawl. He manages to get up on his knees or elbows (never both at the same time), but ends up just flailing around like he's trying to swim. He can get rather frustrated with his immobility, but most of the time, he just enjoys laying on his tummy, surveying his domain on the floor. He's currently enjoying bananas for the first time and loves his "nanners" (I swore to myself I'd never do the baby talk thing...oh well). So far, he has tried sweet potatoes, carrots, and now bananas and hasn't had any qualms or poor reactions to anything, thank God. Matt and I are enjoying watching our little boy grow. It's funny to watch his little personality blossom on what seems a daily basis.

As for Matt and I, it's pretty much just work and parenting. We are, however, growing more and more in our faith and are enjoying learning the Word together. It has definitely made a difference in our marriage. We are becoming very comfortable in our new church and are starting to get more involved with classes and events. We've discussed becoming members of the church and are eagerly awaiting a time when we can get together with the pastor to do so. What a wonderful group of people! We are very thankful to have found them!

Well, there's our current life in a nutshell. I will try my best to keep up on this, but lately that seems to be the last thing on my mind. I love the holidays and all, but I'm always happy to see January, knowing that we can finally come up for air!

My Baby's 1st Christmas

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

So, I'm trying to get into the Christmas spirit...even though it's looking more like spring outside than winter. We put up our Christmas tree last night and today I decided to get some photos of Robby (of course) for possible Christmas cards.

I took a few, but this one was my favorite:

I played around with it in Photoshop and came up with this:

Oh my goodness, he's such a cutie! And I'm not being biased on that! He's very easy to take photos of...well, at least they appear to be. He wasn't too thrilled with me after, but at least we got a good result. It's worth it.

Also, I just wanted to mention that my shoulder is all healed up, today. Matt massaged it for me last night, ended up popping something back into place, and now I feel perfectly fine, again. It was really hurting and it made taking care of Robby extremely difficult!

Speaking of Matt, I must give credit to where credit's due. He gave me the idea for the blinking Christmas lights on my layout, so...thank you, honey. Sorry I stole your idea. :P

Trying to Crawl

Monday, December 1, 2008

Yes, you read correctly. At 4 1/2 months, he's trying to crawl. I predict by Christmas or New Years he's at least Army crawling. Lord help us all...

Trying to Crawl

It really lightened my day seeing him almost do it, though. On top of everything else going on, just this morning the Taurus decided to not start for Matt and I've done something to mess up my shoulder. Both situations are up in the air - I don't know what's wrong with the car or my shoulder, but I'm trying to keep my cool and stay faithful. In fact, I think this might be God's way of telling me "go read your Bible", as I've been putting it off or forgetting, lately. It's extremely hard to do anything on the computer (this one post has taken me forever to type), doing dishes is out of the question (oh, darn), and Robby's down for a nap, so I don't have an excuse. I get the hint. Please pray for us.