Wednesday, August 10, 2016

It's a boy!!!

Funny story…..We just found out I am pregnant….and I'm almost half way done!

We laugh and we are still a bit in shock, but we are beyond excited to announce that we are due to have a little boy at the beginning of January!

Many have said, "How in the world did you not know!?"  Well, to say it plainly, I haven't had a regular cycle because my body just wasn't working the way it should for the last few years so that's the biggest reason I had never thought to take a pregnancy test.  And then we've heard, "Well, didn't you notice getting sick or any other symptoms?"  Actually no.  And this is where I gloat.

In all honesty, I am extremely thankful and feel like it was a gift from God that I missed my whole first trimester, the waiting, the worry, the sickness.  You see, looking back, I did have symptoms but I thought they were all due to having 2 new foster babies in our home.  Evidently I got pregnant at the beginning of April and then we received our very first foster placement at the end of April (6 month and 18 month old brothers).  So needless to say I was extremely tired, but who wouldn't be with crying, teething, sleepless babes who don't know us from the guy down the street.  I also had no morning sickness at all.  Instead, I had heartburn, which again, I thought was due to the stress of having 2 new kids in our home, countless visits from random people to see them, doctors visit, etc.  Oh and the gaining weight thing….because of the change in our schedules we were eating terribly and busy all the time and yet again, stressed because of fostering so of course I didn't think twice.

Until a few weeks ago, when I noticed that, after trying to start jogging and walking more and cutting back on bread, I really wasn't loosing any weight.  I finally decided to take a test, 3 in fact, all of which were instantly positive.

So our first appointment was August 2nd and not only did we find out that I was definitely pregnant, we found out that I was 18 weeks along and we are going to have a boy!  Talk about shock :)

So again, we laugh.  We laugh because it's ridiculous and funny.  We laugh because we see how God has such a sense of humor.  When we thought it wasn't possible for me to get pregnant, He already had a plan in the works and at just the right time He revealed this gift to us in such a special way!  We know such a good and generous God and we can't wait to meet our little guy in, well, about 4 months!!!

Here's to being on the fast track!

Baby Litter--We are in love!!!

18 weeks--Just starting to show!

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Silver Creek Plunge...

A couple of weeks ago, we went on a mini vacation with some friends (the other pastor at our church, Josh, his wife Green, their boys and their friends).  A mutual friend we have allowed us to use their cabin up in the mountains so that we could all get away for a while.  We took our dogs, too much food, no agenda and spent four days in the wilderness.  It's a cute little cabin with it's own outhouse and too many spiders to count but we loved it!

We had fun sitting in the (freezing cold) creek, playing a ton of spike ball and frisbeer (too which we heard the endless arguing of 4 very competitive teenage boys the whole weekend), and laying in hammocks under big pine trees.  

Down the hill from the cabin, there was a large field in front of the campground lodge.  As we were packing up all of our yard games one night, a woman and her 10 year old son came yelling to us asking if the lodge was still open.  It was getting dark and the lodge had just closed.  Her shirt was torn wide open and she was pushing a bike and her son was being tugged along by their two big dogs.  

As we began to hear her story, these 4 teenage boys who did nothing but bicker about games all weekend, swooped in and loved her and her little boy in the best ways possible.  She had gotten into a fight with a niece and didn't want to return to camp.  She wanted to go home but the soonest anyone would be there would be at least 3 hours and it was dark and getting cold.  These boys were ready and willing to do whatever they could to help and especially cared for the little boy who was upset and scared and in need of a friend in that moment.  They brought fire wood and snacks down to the field from the cabin so we could all stay warm and keep the little guy's mind off of everything.  They wanted to give him the world and protect her at the same time.  It was such a sweet moment to see them be the hands of Jesus to these people we didn't even know and were so different from all of us.  

Long story, short….Benj, Josh, and the lodge owner took them back to camp and made sure all was well, while the boys and Green and I cleaned up and went back to the cabin to wait for their return.  As we talked with the boys at the cabin, their hearts were opened and they were able to see what living on mission and for Jesus really looks like.  They had a fire in their hearts to see justice and peace restored to these strangers' lives.  

It's amazing to see how God used us there in that camp ground, at just the right time to help care for someone in need, even on our vacation.  And I am so thankful for how God shaped my own heart in that moment.  As much as I wanted to be warm and dry in the cabin or around our fire, He allowed me to watch Him at work and gave me an excitement for what he can do when we really live our lives obedient to Him.  

Samson was pooped and slept for two days after we got home :)

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

The Backpacking Season Begins...

And so it begins….backpacking!  We love living in the Northwest for so many reasons but this is probably one of our favorites.  There are so many places in Idaho and in surrounding states that have amazing trails, campsites, and places to explore!  Last year we had a few camping trips with friends and  Benj took a few backpacking trips with the guys, but this year I actually get to go on one.  Let the training begin!

Benj and Josh (friend and fellow pastor/elder), took a group of guys from our church up to Hell's Canyon and are already planning multiply other trips throughout the summer and fall.  Here are some pictures of their trip...

Josh and his two boys, Zeke and Mason

Bar break on the trail

Anthony cooking some fresh fish

Sunday, December 7, 2014

September 2014 Baptisms...

Septemeber seemed to be the month of camping and backpacking trips for Benj and I and many of our friends!  To end the camping season right, we were able to go away on the last weekend of the month with some of our Trademark Church family to be a part of their baptisms.

We were so thankful to be able to experience a little piece of what happened that weekend…(and I was even more thankful that I didn't have to experience how cold the water was)! Everyone had the chance to share a bit of their story, be prayed for by people that helped lead them to Christ, and then be baptized in the stream by Benj and Josh.  And then we feasted!

I had hoped to post the video but here are a few pictures until I can figure it out :)

Friday, August 29, 2014

Happy Birthday to Benj!

Last month Benj turned the big 27!  Though the celebrating was fairly low key (totally my fault for not planning better…yes I'm lame), he received an awesome birthday gift from a large group of friends and family!  To those that pitched in, THANK YOU from the bottom of our hearts!  He is so thankful and so excited to start putting your generous gifts to good use.    

We've always loved riding, even before we dated we loved riding bikes together.  Probably one of my favorite memories of getting to know him and spending time with him.  Well, now he's taken it to a new level.  We got a steal of a deal on this Scott 2013 model that they were trying to get off their floors and he loves it.  It's his new baby, second probably to his guitar :)

Side Note:  He may not like this but I have to brag….Benj has lost 30lbs this past summer and is trying for 15 more!  He has worked hard for it and he continues to amaze me.  I would love to post a picture of him in all his gear with the bike, but he would probably kill me and I'm sure you all don't want to see him in spandex anyway!  I'll keep that to myself.  

Happy Birthday Benny!

Friday, July 18, 2014

The Man Trip….

Clearly I was not invited on this trip, but I'm not sure I would've been able to hack it.

Benj, Josh, and his oldest son, Mason trekked through the 7 Devils Mountain Range, surviving like men!  This was the first trip Benj has been invited on and now that Mason is 15, this was his first "Man trip" in which he had to carry his own weight and was fully responsible to be part of the team.

6 days

5 Nights

44.6 miles

Elevation:  7,000-9,000 ft.

Ave. Temperature:  Highs--70's/Lows--40's

The terrain is rough with snow still on the ground in parts, but the views were amazing and the time they had in the quiet and with each other were worth it.  Benj and Josh work hard week in and week out to lead, grow, invest in, and pray for our Church and the community around it and I was so thankful that they were able to just get away in the wilderness.

Each night they would check-in with an "okay" message that Josh's wife and myself would get, so that we could know that they were still alive.  They took a SPOT device so we could see their coordinates.  Being the worry-prone person that I am, Benj decided to say right before leaving, "if we don't check in 2 nights in a row, call the ranger."  What!?  Thankfully they arrived home safe and in one piece (a day earlier than expected because of some painful knees), and I don't think I've ever smelled that kind of stink from my husband.

Enjoy the pictures that don't do them justice and give Benj a call to hear his stories!