Monday, May 31, 2010

2 Years Ago Today....

I married my best friend,
And I can't wait for the next 50 + years.
This next year holds many changes for us, a baby, a move and a new job (just to name a few). I am not afraid of the transitions, because I know that we will be together through it all and that we will be relying on the Lord for our strength, day by day.
I'm so excited I get to live the adventure of life with you.

I love you babe.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Lucy's Quilt

Lucy's quilt started out like this:
Became this:
Then this:
And finally:
It's done! :)
It is awaiting it's owner's arrival :)

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

An Evening With the Boys

For the past four years, I have worked for the Fowler family as their babysitter (I like to call myself a nanny - it sounds more sophisticated, and the boys were never babies when I was with them... :)). I have truly grown to love the family - they have a special place in my heart. Pamela has grown from an employer to a dear friend, and Drew and Kyle are my buddies.

Last night, Brad and I got to have Drew and Kyle come over for dinner and to play for a bit. I worked late since Pamela and Dan were out for the evening and since I had to pick up Drew from a golf lesson two blocks from our house, I figured "Let's hang out at our place tonight!" It was so fun. I always have so much to tell Brad after an afternoon with the boys, he has spent some time with them - but not within the past year and a half, and it was fun for him to see how much they have grown and to interact with their little personalities. Dinner conversation revolved around Chloe and her "amazing" jumping skills (the boys couldn't get over her curiosity), Drew's golf lesson that afternoon (Brad and he had a cute conversation going about learning how to do an "Up and Down) and Kyle's baseball game.

I had to laugh when Drew stated, as we sat down for dinner, "Chicken! I love chicken!" I quickly responded, "Hey Mister! Whenever I make you chicken for dinner, you complain, 'Chicken again!?!? We have chicken all the time!' But now, when Brad makes it - it is all of a sudden your favorite? What's up with that?" All he could do in response was giggle. :) Brad had made BBQ chicken on the grill and it was extra good - Kyle asked me, "Can you make sure my mom gets this recipe?" :)

After dinner we played us some serious Mario Cart. Brad now finally understands why I get frustrated playing Wii with Drew and Kyle - they always win. (My competitive spirit is something that God is still in the process of sanctifying :) ) I loved hearing the boys taunt Brad or try to tell him how to race (They have long since learned NOT to give me instructions in the middle of a game - my "humble" spirit can not take direction, especially from a 7 year old), Brad's reply was "Mind your own screen!" I could only laugh, because I often come home and express to Brad how "frustrating" it is for me to play Mario Cart with the boys - it is seemingly impossible for me to win. His always tells me, a little to gently for my taste (I never feel like he truly empathizes with me on this subject), that "it's okay for kids to win sometimes." He got a taste of his own medicine tonight - the boys whooped us. :)

Needless to say, I'm going to miss these boys. A lot.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

"Are you ready?"

It has gotten to the point in my pregnancy that random people are asking me questions such as, "When is the big date?" "Do you know what it is?" and "How much longer to you have to go?"

These questions usually throw me off, mostly because people in they city don't usually talk to strangers but also because they don't phrase the questions in a way that makes me think "pregnancy." It usually takes me a second to realize and tell myself, "they are asking about your big belly Silly."

This happened earlier today, while I was stopping in at 7-11 for my mid-day I-know-I-have-a-long-afternoon-and-evening-ahead-of-me-I-need-energy Dr. Pepper fix, the man behind the counter asked me "Are you ready?"

If questions like this have ever stumped me - this one really did.... I allowed to blame it on the pregnancy? No? Well, I am going to anyway. "Lucy has stole half of my brain - hopefully she will give it back after she is born." (Don't judge me people - I am not daft - I would have you know I graduated college with honors)

Anyway, by the time my brain kicked in and I gave myself the "You are so slow" mini-lecture, I replied, "I better be! She due to arrive in 23 days."

This got me thinking... are we ready? And I am happy to announce that we are.

The crib is set up. The rocking chair is ready for some cuddling. The changing table is stocked. The dresser drawers are full of clean blankets, outfits, pjs and burp cloths.

Really, the only thing on my "Baby To-Do" list is finish Lucy's quilt. Sure - finish refinishing the dresser, and make curtains are still on the list, but honestly - with the house on the market we are thinking it might be best to wait for those two projects until we are in our Texas home (it feels strange to say that still - but I am so excited!). For one, we will have a garage that is ours alone that will provide a better work space to finish the dresser. And two, I don't want to make custom curtains for a room that will only be occupied for 2 months max.

Since the house is uber-clean-all-the-time-because-we-hope-that-our-house-gets-a-showing, tomorrow, on my morning off, I plan on pulling out the sewing machine. Turning on some tunes. Making some lemonade. And sewing away.

Good plan? I think so.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Moody Graduates 2010!!!

One of the things about graduating early from college, is that not all your friends get to graduate with you - instead they graduate a bit later.

This last "semester" (its funny how time is not separated into "semesters" once you get out of college) has flown by for me and I can't believe the time has come for all my dear friends to graduate. We got to go to two graduation parties today, it was so good to see a good number of guys from Brad's floor who were in my class, and also to catch up Miriam - my freshman/sophomore roommate.

(From L to R) Alex, Colton, Steve, Jessie, Josiah, Kyle and Joel

Miriam and Alex

Me and Miriam

Alex, Me and Miriam

An afternoon of seeing good friends - what could be better?

Friday, May 14, 2010

Texas sized changes ahead!

Brad here, with some exciting/scary/emotional/life changing, news. About 5 months ago Sarah and I started praying about where God would have us go next. While we have LOVED our time here in Chicago and been so blessed by our friends, church, and nearby family in Michigan and Minnesota, we knew that God was calling us to move forward with the call that he had placed on our lives. That call is to further the ministry of the Church in America through ministering in a local congregation in some fashion. So we started the process of seeking out new ministry employment opportunities. At first we searched close to home in the greater Midwest region, but God lead elsewhere.

In the process we met with dozens of churches, and were invited to formally candidate at three of them. We were blessed in our interaction with each of these churches, and as we prayed God lead us to a small church with a huge passion to serve Christ in a town called Pampa, TX.

Pampa is the second largest town in the panhandle of Texas. It is about an hour Northeast of Amarillo, TX and two and a half hours to the west of Oklahoma City. The town is made up of about 17,000 people with a large age range and many families. We have to say the people of Pampa have so far struck us as some of the kindest most genuine people we have ever met.

We will be serving at the Bible Church of Pampa, who has called me to be their Senior Pastor. We are humbled and excited for the ministry that already exists at this church! The church has about 50 people currently meeting each week, but the facility has been completely updated in the past 6 years. As a result there is space for all sorts of ministry and connecting to happen. The church already has an Amazing Awana (children’s ministry) program that has over 70 children each Wednesday night, the majority of these kids are from un-churched homes. We really believed that God has called us to this church to come along side an awesome group of people who are serving the Lord with great effort. The community has many needs and we are excited to do everything we can to teach these people about Jesus love for them.

We are currently starting a two to three month transition phase in which we will, if God wills: have our sweet baby Lucy, sell our Condo, purchase a new home in Pampa, and complete a move. We would ask that if you can, you would lift us up in prayer for God’s help and blessing in this process. In particular if you would pray for a safe delivery for Sarah and Baby Lucy, and the sale of our currently home in a timely manner. We are so excited for what God is up to and pray that we can stay in His will.

We love you all!


Thursday, May 13, 2010

4 Weeks

Our due date is in 4 weeks.

Looking back a few months, we didn't even know we were pregnant when we were 4 weeks along. Now, 32 weeks have passed and I find myself 36 weeks pregnant, suddenly very aware how real this upcoming change is.

I know that many changes are in our future. Right now, I am not worried about transitioning to life with a baby. I am in awe of the miracle of it all. The realness of it. I am so excited about being a mom. Having a baby is something that I have dreamed about since I was a little girl - I spent hours playing with "Baby Pam," pretending to be a mommy. I was even disciplined as a little girl for not disciplining my baby doll in a Godly way.... lol - true story. :) But now I am on the brink of having a real-live baby to care for, and although there is no earthly-parent who disciplines me now, I have a Heavenly Father who still corrects my behavior and shapes my .

I was struck this last Sunday in church as portions of Psalm 139 were read aloud.

1O LORD, you have searched me and known me!
You know when I sit down and when I rise up;
you discern my thoughts from afar.
3You search out my path and my lying down
and are acquainted with all my ways.
4Even before a word is on my tongue,
behold, O LORD, you know it altogether.
5You hem me in, behind and before,
and lay your hand upon me.
6Such knowledge is too wonderful for me;
it is high; I cannot attain it.
13For you formed my inward parts;
you knitted me together in my mother’s womb.
14I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works;
my soul knows it very well.
15My frame was not hidden from you,when I was being made in secret,
intricately woven in the depths of the earth.
16Your eyes saw my unformed substance;in your book were written, every one of them,
the days that were formed for me,
when as yet there was none of them.

The Lord knows my little girl. Even now as she is still in my womb. He knows her character, her temperament and her personality. It is this knowledge that, at this moment, gives me peace about raising Lucy.

I trust that the God who knows her, so intimately, will give Brad and I the strength we need to raise her up in the knowledge of Him. I trust He will supply us with grace when we are deficient, so that we can get through difficult days. I trust that He will give us the wisdom we need to gently correct and discipline. I know I (we) will make mistakes. Parenting is not easy. But it is a huge privilege.

It is comforting to know that God knows me too - I agree with David when he writes in Psalm 139:6, the knowledge that You intimately know me "is too wonderful for me; it is high; I cannot attain it." My Heavenly Father knows where my deficiencies lie. He knows where I am weak. He knows my character and what has the ability to stress and frustrate me. I cling to the promise that God gave Paul, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness" (2 Corinthians 12:9, emphasis mine).

I know as a mom, all I will have to offer Lucy on some days is my weakness. I hope and pray, that those days will be the best days of our relationship, because those days will be the days that we have to rely on God's power to get us through the mundane and normal events.

God knows you too. He knows your weaknesses. His grace can meet you in your moments, or days of weakness. He is sufficient.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

What will Lucy look like?

We got to see both sides of our family in the month of April - Brad's family at the beginning and my family at the end. During both trips I collected pictures of Brad and I as babies and young children - I thought it would be fun to imagine what Lucy will look like as we looked through pictures of Brad and I as kids.

I hope you enjoy imagining alongside me. :)

(Sarah, born 11-11-1987)

(Brad, born 1-29-1986)
Grandparent Love
(Sarah, held by Grandma Chisholm)
(Brad, held by Grandpa Buning)
First Days
(Sarah, enjoying her swing)
(Brad, going home picture - taken by the hospital)
Play Time
(Sarah, on a blanket stitched by Grandma Addington)

(Brad, his sense of humor started at an early age :) )
(Sarah, enjoying tummy-time)

(Brad, checking out his toys)

(Sarah, exploring)

(Brad, "I'm coming to get you!")


(Sarah with Daddy)

(Brad with Mommy)


Life Jackets

(Sarah with Mommy in Cross Lake, Minnesota)

(Brad with Daddy)


One Year Old




Playing with Siblings

(Sarah with Becca)

(Brad with Amy)


Pictures with Mom or Dad

(Sarah, with Mom and Becca - this picture was sent to Dad when he was in Saudi during Dessert Storm)

(Brad with Dad and Amy)


All Dressed Up




Growing up

(Sarah - silliness starts early)

(Brad - gotta love the early 90s)

The Evolution of a Nursery - Part 3

Lucy's room is almost finished - just a few more finishing touches are needed - but it feels so much better now than it did a week ago. Where disorganization once ruled, organization now reigns.
The lanterns I ordered ended up being just what this corner needed - color and fun. :) I found the two baskets just inside the door (lower right) at the Salvation Army - $8 total. The amazing crates in the bookshelf were all gifts and have really come in handy for organizing Lucy Lu's toys.

The dresser is one of the things that needs to be finished - but Chicago's weather has not been cooperating with our efforts. I got tired of waiting to organize Lucy's clothes so this last weekend, we ran two loads of laundry, cleaning all her little outfits, blankets, towels and burp cloths in preparation for her arrival. It was really fun to go through, snip off tags, wash, dry, fold and organize all the adorable clothes we have received - we felt very blessed looking at the coffee table and realizing that Lucy has pretty much everything she needs for the next year.
If you are observant - you will notice that my seeds have enjoyed their soil and are all growing really well. I think I am going to give them another week or so before transferring them to pots outside.

It pays off to decorate your room in high-school in the green/pink/blue because then you can use a lot of your decor when accessorizing your firstborn's nursery. The above shelves have been in many homes and have held many of my treasures - it makes me so happy that now I can use them in Lucy's room. We decided to lower the crib mattress - mostly so that we could hide the lovely golf clubs that reside underneath. I also really like that the crib skirt now falls to the ground - the 2 foot gap was bothering me before. :)

Bear and Racky were Brad and my buddies growing up and they may be two of my favorite things in the nursery. Their well-worn bodies speak of childhood devotion and love. I can't wait to see what special stuffed animal Lucy becomes attached to.

So there you have it, Lucy's nursery. The only things that remain on the to do list are 1) buy blinds, 2) paint the dresser, 3) paint the mirror white (hanging directly opposite the door - another Salvation Army find - I love the shape of it), 4) paint the book shelves white and 5) figure out curtains.

Goodness, that list is a bit longer than I thought it would be - but all the essentials are done, we even have the car seat and stroller in the car. Whenever Lucy decides to make her appearance (Her due date is 30 days away! Augh we-can-hardly-wait!) we are ready. Or, as ready as we can be. :)

The little "Aunts" in San Antonio

We got to spend about a week with my family in San Antonio at the end of April - it was so good to see everyone, relax and play with the little girls.

It is pretty difficult for me, when in the presence of these two, not to have a great time.

Anna Ruth keeps me smiling :)

And Laura Rae keeps me laughing... :) (Meet "mini-me" - she looks just like I did when I was her age, and has the same constitution too :) )

They are so excited for Lucy to come - Right after I got into San Antonio, Anna asked, "Where's Lucy? I want to see her." I had to explain that Lucy is still in my tummy, and we have to be patient and wait until she is ready to come out. (Although I'm just as anxious to "see her" as Anna) A few times over the weekend, Anna would come up to me, stick out her tummy and say, "My tummy is fat because I have a baby inside me." She is great.

It's crazy to think that these two sweet girls will be my daughter's aunts. I really hope they have a sweet relationship with Lucy and all our future kids.

While in San Antonio, we attempted to play "Sorry"...

...had fun showing the girls (and Uncle John) our iPad...

... enjoyed watching Grandpa read to the little girls (I remember when Grandpa used to read to us, "Mr Poppers Penguins," and "Summer of the Monkeys,")...

...and we got to celebrate Jana's graduation too!

We had such a fabulous trip, our time in San Antonio always feels a bit short (time with family always does these days). But I get to see my mom in June (She is going to come up for Lucy's arrival), Jana in July and the rest of my family in November at the Addington Family Reunion - We can't wait!