Thursday, July 24, 2014

We haven't melted . . . YET!

I figured out pretty quickly that Texas summers are like PA winters. You just stay inside and don't attempt to do many activities outside. And my brave Babe! He just endures the outdoor temps while working, whether the PA cold or the Texas heat! He never complains.

We are alive and well here in our new "home". I say home in quotes because we are currently staying with my parents. Though we are settling in nicely, it doesn't quite feel like reality that we are here to stay since we are not in a house of our own. 

We were not able to find a suitable house to rent before we had to have the moving truck returned. Currently all of our belongs are in a storage unit, with the exception of the few things we brought to my parent's to make our stay here feel a little more like home. My parents are so gracious to allow us to stay with them! Though we hope the arrangement is temporary, their house offers a great set up. We have our own room and bathroom and Baby Girl has her own room as well. So thankful for their giving hearts! And of course, Baby Girl is loving all the attention Grammi and Poppy are pouring on her. (Babe and I are loving the "breaks" we get as well!!) 

Babe started working the first week we arrived and since has been working for 2 different companies, sometimes working two jobs in one day. We are not sure how permanent either job is, but for now we are grateful for anything provides income. 

I had an interview this week at a local Christian university's onsite cafe. The job looks promising and seems like something I will enjoy! I am thinking I'll work 2 or 3 days, with my mom watching Baby Girl. I look forward to getting back to work, simply to meet people and be social. 

Despite things that seemingly went "wrong" with our move, so many more things went right. Above all, we have a peace that passes ALL understanding! We know God has not forgotten us and he continues to guide and direct our steps. 

If you've been praying for us, thank you! Please don't stop :)

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Texas Update

Thank you to those of you who have prayed,  text, commented on fb, helped with packing and loading the truck or stopped by to give hugs and say goodbye over the past week. 

WOW what a week!!! I finally feel caught up on rest after Baby Girl and I slept about 10 hours last night!

Baby Girl and I arrived in Texas yesterday with my parents via plane. ALL of our stuff is on it's way now with Babe and 3 of our awesome friends helping to drive the moving truck and our pickup truck. Should arrive by tomorrow morning.

Our original plan was to stay with my parents for awhile and put our stuff in storage until we find a place. After loading the truck, we got a little weary thinking of loading and unloading our stuff so many more times. We are going to Plan B and looking into finding a house to move into right away. Babe and I have had our eyes on a few rental properties that we found online. Yesterday my parents drove me around to those properties to get a neighborhood view and feel. Tomorrow, once Babe arrives, a realtor is taking us to tour some of the houses we picked out. Praying for a rental house that we like, that is in our budget and within a reasonable distance of my parents house and church. 

Baby Girl is doing good overall. She did awesome on the plane ride and is loving exploring Grammi and Poppy's house. I know the change is effecting her, though, as I see small changes in her behavior. We will be very glad to have daddy with us again and to get into our new "normal".

Please continue to pray for us. As much as we've looked forward to this, it is still a BIG change. Lots of adjusting, transitioning and being  s t r e t c h e d!

Thanks, friends!


Saturday, July 5, 2014

It's not "goodbye". It's "see ya later".

This is our last weekend as Pennsylvania residents. Next week this time Alaina and I will have landed in Dallas with my parents and Durrell will be soon to follow in the moving truck. ((deep breath)) It's starting to hit. But hit mostly in waves of excitement and anticipation. This is our adventure. And how exciting it is!!!

Yesterday morning as I was alone and driving around the Lancaster County country side, I thought over the events of the last 3 years. I remember times of crying tears of frustration. Times of asking God WHY?! Why was our house not selling? Were we to stay in PA? Why would our hearts not stop longing for something that may not ever become a reality!? Right at what felt like my breaking point, the doors swung open. And now . . . W O W. It's really happening. God answered our prayers. Not in our timing, but in His.

? Will we live in Texas forever? We don't know.
? Do we feel "called" to Texas? Or feel that God "told us" to go? No. It is simply something we have dreamed about doing and we are going to give it a try. We feel at peace with our decision and have been amazed at the doors that continue to open for us.
? What if we hate Texas? We'll come back to PA.

At times I have had a bit of a bitter taste in my mouth about Lancaster County. The small town-ness sometimes gets to me. But as the weeks have counted down to our departure, I have been reminded of the things I love about this place. There is a tiny part of me that is sad to leave my hometown and it's deep rooted traditions and religious backround. But I know many of the traditions I have held on to will be passed down to future generations, no matter where we live.

And so, as we embark on our journey, it's not "goodbye". It's "see ya later". Because we'll be back, if even only for visits. We'll be back!

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Your grace abounds in deepest waters
Your sovereign hand will be my guide
Where feet may fail and fear surrounds me
You've never failed and You won't start now

Spirit lead me where my trust is without borders
Let me walk upon the waters
Wherever You would call me

Take me deeper than my feet could ever wander
And my faith will be made stronger
In the presence of my Saviour

For over 2 years, we have had big dreams of moving to Texas. Our attempts at making it happen continuously failed. In the last couple of weeks, doors have been opening and our dreams are becoming a reality. Our house has sold. We are now free to make the move we've been hoping for!

If all goes as planned with the settlement of our house, we will be headed South by July 12th. That is in 6 weeks!!! 

Do we have a house in Texas yet? Nope.
Does Babe have a definite job lined up? Nope.
Are we nervous or scared? Sometimes.
Are we excited to embrace a new life? Most days.
Why are we moving? Why not. (my parents live there, which is a big draw . . . we've also found an amazing church that we absolutely love . . . And we keep thinking, if we don't do this, we'll always wonder "what if".)
Are we crazy? Probably.

To most people, we are crazy and maybe even foolish. And then there are those few who encourage us onward, daring us to step out of our comfort zone and embrace change and growth. 

I know it will not be easy. Packing has already proved to be more of an emotional process than I realized. We are leaving behind all that we have ever known. But I also know that we are about to embark on a journey that will change us for the better and we will (hopefully) never be the same again. 

Here we go, ya'll! ;)


Monday, March 31, 2014

Confessions of a first time mom . . .

I am enjoying being a mom.


To be able to say those words makes my heart happy. The transition into parenthood has not been an easy one for me. Before Baby A arrived, we had prepared ourselves for a big adjustment . In the beginning, things seemed to be smooth sailing and I thought we had by passed the hormonal blues and uncomfortable adjustments. This sounds selfish of me to say, but around 3 months into the journey, I realized all the things I missed about non parent life. I missed ME time, US time and I realized that there was no going back. I felt STUCK.

Overall, Baby A was and is a "good" baby. Our frustrations with her were probably some of the same that most new parents have with their newborns . . . challenges with sleep time and breast feeding, early teething, etc. The hardest part for me was what felt like the loss of my independence by being with her A L L   T H E   T I M E as a stay at home mom. Babe did the best he could at giving me breaks, but with nursing, it was difficult at times. 

Seasoned parents continuously remind us to cherish every little moment with our baby because the days quickly blend into weeks, months and then years . . . 

That is wonderful advice, and so true. I can't believe my baby girl is close to 8 months old already! And though there were (and still are) times when 5 minutes of trying to calm a screaming baby feels like hours, it really is only moments. And our journey has only just begun

What changed for me? One thing - being out of the newborn stage. I'm gonna be honest, that is not my favorite age. At this point in our journey, Baby A is a very active and adventurous baby. She is crawling and pulling herself up already (at 7 1/2 months!) and loves to dance and clap. She is quick to smile and lights up a room with her bright eyes and funny faces. Her personality is really coming out and she is FUN!
Another thing that changed and is still a work in progress - taking time to re-fuel. I try to be intentional with filling myself up by taking time with God each day and focusing on His promises instead of my selfish desires. Also getting ME time now and then is a must. Even if having "me time" means sitting with a cup of coffee while Baby A naps instead of quickly trying to get house stuff done. 

I recently read James 1:5 and it has become a verse I cling to . . . "If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you." It's so simple! Just ASK and GOD will give it to you!!! I am asking God DAILY for wisdom! In many areas of life, but especially concerning my daughter. Parenthood brings so many uncertainties. But I have been clinging to Jesus and his word to help me on this journey. 

I have not "arrived" in my parent hood journey. I am just now enjoying it a lot more! And that in itself is a huge accomplishment for me! 

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

A New Year

There's something so fresh and exciting to me about the start of a new year. It's like a blank piece of paper begging to be written on. Towards the end of December, I enjoy looking back in my journal at the entries I wrote throughout the year. I like to see what things changed or stayed the same. I try to set aside some time on New Year's Day for reflecting and setting goals for the new year. This past New Year's day, Babe and I took a little time and prayed together over 2014 and all the changes we hope it brings. I kinda liked that . . . Maybe it was the start of a new tradition.

2013 was bitter sweet for us. Some of things we had hoped to accomplish or see come to past did not. The sweet part?  We got to experience the miracle birth of our Baby Girl and become a family of 3. That in itself outweighs our disappointments!! Our goals as a couple in 2014 seem to be a repeat of 2013. But that's OK. Sometimes (actually, most times), dreams take a little longer to come to past then we think they should.

For me personally, I've decided to set weekly goals instead of yearly goals. As a mommy, I've been finding that time just seems to slip away from me. If I am not intentional about my day, the days quickly slip into weeks and before I know it, it's the next month already. I also set specific goals. For example: instead of having a goal to "be more encouraging", I've set a goal to send a card a week to whomever God puts on my heart. If I break my goals down by weeks, I'm hoping by the end of the year I actually accomplish the things I set out to.

Excited for this new year. Praying for God's wisdom and direction as we seek His will for our future plans.

From our little family to yours, may you have a happy, healthy and prosperous 2014! 

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Holding My Baby Tight

My thoughts have been all over the place this last week, so forgive me if this post is a bit muddy. 

When I was younger, I thought my parents were strict. Especially in my teenage years (of course)! They had regulations on things that I thought at the time were silly. As I entered into adulthood, I slowly began to see the things they were trying to protect me from. They may have been a bit overboard at times, but the boundaries they had set up for me were meant to keep me safe. I wouldn't say they were overprotective. I was given choices and allowed to make mistakes. But they were involved in my life, always. And now, as a parent, I find myself having the concerns for my baby girl that my parents did for me. I get where they were coming from.

There are so many different parenting "techniques", if that's what you call them. This book says to do this, that Dr. said to do that. Don't do this. You'll scar them if you do that. What works for one child may not work for another. I feel overloaded!

A local news article this week concerning the sexual abuse of a minor by a "trusted" adult has shaken me to the core. I was holding Baby Girl as I read the article. Fear gripped my heart. I want to hold her and never let her go. Never let her out of my sight!! I found myself questioning the integrity of even those closest to us. How will I protect my baby from the crazy things in our world?? 

As I've been processing things this week, fear has attempted to cripple me many times. I've had to remind myself that my baby girl is in God's hands. I can't keep her in a bubble her whole life. I want her to learn, grow, make mistakes and learn from those mistakes. Babe and I have and continue to pray for wisdom to know how to raise Baby Girl and our future children. We need that wisdom to know what works for us and our family. The unknown scares me. I like to know who, what, where and when. Life isn't predicable. Bad stuff happens. But my heavenly Father never leaves his children's side. He will hold my babies and never let them go. He will never let my babies out of his sight. 

And so we will daily seek wisdom from our heavenly Father and trust that He's got our little family in His hands.