Friday, May 31, 2013

A New Tablecloth for us!

I'm so excited to show you a finished project!  This one has been a little while in the making. Actually months in the making.  It was one of those projects that I had to rip a few seams.  I guess a few would be an understatement.  I was almost done with it when I left for Florida.  You could say it's been calling my name for me to come and finish it! :o)
 For Christmas I received one of Heather Mulder Peterson's pattern books.  I love it!  I picked a project that had a little more difficulty than I'm used to, so it made it very fun!  But, when I finished, the tablecloth did not lay flat.  Ugh.  So, I ripped out and replaced the fabric that seemed stretched. still didn't lay flat.  I finally had to ditch most of the pattern and just use the blocks with a simple border around it.  Not the finished project I envisioned.  But, I like it just the same!
Have I mentioned lately that I'm in love with Aqua?
 The table that is in our home (our house is furnished by our landlord) is quite small.  We had to improvise and put a large sheet of wood over it so we can all fit around the table.  Plywood is pretty splintery, so we always have a tablecloth on our table.
Sewing is so therapeutic!

I'm linking up with Crazy Mom quilts for Finish it up Friday....her post today makes me really want to make a Design Wall....

Thursday, May 30, 2013

My Sweet Callie

My sweet Callie...I just love her!  She's full of spunk and personality!  I thought it was so cute the other night watching the older 3 try to clear the table.  Our sweet Callie wasn't done yet!
 She ate and ate and took her time and enjoyed having the table to herself.  She sure did make that salad look good!

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Yard Work Day!

We've been so blessed to have some rain the past couple of weeks.  We even had a couple of thunderstorms!  I love a good thunderstorm!  So, what does all this rain mean?  For one, laundry that is piling up in our basket since we can't hang it on the line to dry.  (we've had to string line in a couple of rooms so we can at least have a couple loads done a day.)  and it also means that everything is turning green!  So gorgeous!  Patrick declared this past Monday as
  Yard Work Day!
 Love my sweet Callie.  Always such a cutie pie!  And a big helper, too!
 And the chickens got a good clean coop.

 St. Barths has some gorgeous flowers!  What a beautiful place.  I love how my kiddos all pitch in and help.  It's true that many hands do make light work!  And fun, too!
Micah was just so excited to be able to put on his new shoes again.  Several times a day he brings me his shoes. I think that's a hint that he likes to play outside!

So, the yard is looking good, flowers are blooming, trees are trimmed....It's almost time for company!

Monday, May 27, 2013

The Plan

 When I mentioned taking my vitamins a couple of posts ago, I put "Love you Dad"  I did this because while I was in Florida, he was the one to run to the store to fill all of my prescriptions and buy me my vitamins.  And would even come back with some real chocolate milk for Micah!  And being the good Mom that I am, I would have to sample some (maybe a bunch) of it first! :o)

Last week all the medicine I was taking made me queasy.  So, taking my vitamins wasn't an option.  But, now that I'm not taking anymore pain killers, I'm back to my vitamins.  Oooh, I start to gag just thinking about them!

I'm starting to do I describe it?...different.  I have more energy!  Praise the Lord for that!  I have the sewing bug and it's been nice to sit and sew a little in the evenings.  I'm trying not to nap as much if I don't need it, but the times of rest when the 3 little ones go down has been marvelous.  My pressure?  Well, it's not as strong.  So that's good, but the pressure has been replaced with a pain.  I told Patrick that it feels like I have an open wound deep inside.  The pain isn't by any means excrutiating.  Just there, bothersome, uncomfortable and sometimes it just hurts.  But, being able to have an un-foggy brain helps me to deal with it. (Ice packs are nice too!)  So, what's the plan? We're taking it one day at a time, praying for wisdom, and I'm taking my vitamins!

Saturday, May 25, 2013

You know you have Cabin Fever when...

I know I've bragged a few times before about how amazing my husband is.  He's taken over all of my duties while still trying to keep up with his own.  To prove my point, he's chopping green peppers for our lunch as we speak. Yes, I know...amazing!

This morning he decided to run to the store and pick up a few groceries for our Sunday Meal.  He took Silas, Callie, and Joshua with him to get them out for a while.  I kept Micah here since he would be going down for his nap.

As everyone was getting ready to go and putting on shoes, Micah went to the closet where we keep all the kiddos shoes.  He diligently searched through looking for his and finally found one.   He toddled over to Josh, one shoe in hand, and started saying "Nan Noo, Nan Noo"  (Thank you) hoping to put on his one shoe and go to the store.   Sweet know you have Cabin Fever when that happens!

Thursday, May 23, 2013

A Different Kind of Year

So far, this 2013 has not went as planned.  The first half has been a little overwhelming at times, but knowing my God loves me and I am in His hands is a truth that I treasure.  When my illness came back in February, and then a trip to Florida last month, we've been on "survival mode" around our home.  I am so ready to get back to normal, or at least a "new normal" for us.  This week was another one of those weeks that didn't quite go as planned.  I don't want to write out every bit of our latest, but here's a few tidbits:

~We realized the new meds weren't working.
~The doctor (my Rheumatologist) also realized my ESRs (the marker in the blood for inflammation) were higher than ever and prescribed some new meds along with some pain meds. She believes that while I do have Rheumatoid Arthritis, there is something else going on in my body causing my pain.
~I don't do well with new pain meds.
~I don't do well with new pain meds. + vitamins
~I don't do well with new pain meds + vitamins + Codeine.
~My doctor decided to send me to St. Martin for an MRI.
~Hearing many people talking about panicking in the tunnel made me afraid, too.
~Quoting verses and praying to your Savior truly does give you the Peace that passes Understanding (plus realizing a husband that wouldn't be all that thrilled if I went all the way to St. Martin for a test and had to come back because I pressed a panic button helped too) :o)
~I don't do well with pain meds, an empty stomach, and a rocking boat on the way back to St. Barths.  Let's just say my husband is the best to remind me to bring a plastic bag in my backpack.
~Sometimes a negative result is exactly what we want, but at the same time not knowing can be worse.
~I don't do well with Morphine.
~Migraine headaches aren't fun at all!
~Your children's voices get 20x louder when you have a headache!
~I have the most understanding husband in the world.
~Doctor #7 is also stumped.  She thinks I need to go to Martinique to see the "Special Diseases" doctors.
~Doctor in Florida recommends Mayo Clinic

Please pray for us as we seek the Lord's Will for the next step.  This morning my Red and White Blood Count was normal!  Praise the Lord!  My ESR is still elevated, but down from last week!
So for now, I'm going to sit tight.  Relax.  Take my Vitamins (I love you Dad)  Prepare for my parents to come and visit! (Yipee!)  And Be Still and know (without a doubt) that HE is God.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Great Fish!

One of the benefits of living on an island where your uncle is a fisherman is getting fresh fish delivered to your door.
 As in fresh, I mean so fresh that as soon as the above picture snapped, Patrick said, "Ouch!  It bit me!"  Yes, they were even jumping in the bag! (Do you see Callie Grace peeking at the fish?)

There were Grouper, Yellow Tail Snapper,

 ...Parrot Fish, Trigger Fish,


....and a super excited boy to have fish for dinner!

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Silas brought three visitors!

After getting our home ready for church on Sunday, Patrick left to pick up people to come to services.  Shortly before he arrived back home, Silas came to show me that the visitors he invited to church came!  He was excited for 3 new "people" to come!  Do you see them?

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

A Typical Sunday Morning

Just like most families, our Sunday mornings have always been busy.  But, since we've moved to the mission field and have services in our home every Sunday, our morning is super-duper busy.  We try to get as much accomplished on Saturday to make things a little easier.  We iron all of our clothes and have them laid out and ready.  We decide ahead of time what will be a quick breakfast.  The coffee pot is ready to go and chocolate milks are poured and waiting in the fridge.  We do as much cleaning as possible on Saturday (sweeping, mopping, dusting)  But, with a family of 8 there are always last minute unexpected delays.  Here's a typical  Sunday Morning for us:

 When the older 3 wake up they get ready as quickly as possible so they can help the rest of the morning.  Normally we eat breakfast together for weekdays, but on Sundays it sort of happens in shifts.

 We do any last minute cleaning and putting away of toys that mysteriously made their way out through the morning.  Hhhhmm, notice anything out of place on the bookshelf?

 We serve lunch to everyone that comes on Sunday.  Patrick and I try to prepare as much as possible the night before.  But, this Sunday we made the cake that morning.  My oven has been running very hot lately and in our busy-ness we didn't keep an eye on our cake.  Oops!

Patrick puts final touches on his message.  His french is coming along wonderfully and he is doing so great!  I'm so proud of him!  He used a powerpoint type presentation where he puts the verses and main points up on the TV during the message.  That way they can see what he is saying also.  He's been preaching some great messages and I'm loving his series on prayer!

Then, I try to compliment my sweet 3 year old on her dress choice, but try to gently teach that the purple shirt doesn't match.  I showed her the ironed and ready dress and she was excited to wear it.  Whew!  

 Then, we work at taming the curly mane of my sweetie.
 Much better!

 Josh makes his selections for the songs we will be singing.  He's an excellent Song Leader!
 The girls finish up the dishes and help make sure everything is tidy.

Elisabeth puts final touches on her Sunday School Lesson and sets up the kiddie table and chairs in her room.  She made a great coloring sheet and has the songs all ready to go.  My 3 little ones are blessed with their Sunday School Teachers!

Through all this busy-ness the baby sneaks in one more nap.
I love our Sundays and it's so exciting to see God work!

Monday, May 13, 2013

A Great Birthday

Last Thursday I had a wonderful 37th Birthday.  Did I really just type that?  Can I actually be 37?  Seems old.  
I had already been spoiled by all of my family in Florida with early birthday presents.  Denise took me out to dinner at Cheddars.  It was my first time there and I loved it!  We had so much fun together.
Then, Mom and Dad took me to get a manicure, pedicure and a haircut.  I was so pampered! And then....they bought me a gift I had been drooling over and hoping to get...but I'll post on that another time! ;o)

Patrick was so thoughtful to make me a birthday cake in my favorite color, Aqua!  And the chocolate frosting on top was perfect and so delicious!

 My sweet family loves to decorate for holidays.  (I do too.  Maybe they get it from me!)

Patrick let Silas and Callie pick out gifts for me.  When they saw this blow up pool, they knew I would love it.  And that they would too.  We've already used it a few times in that past few days.  It's been so hot and it's a perfect way to cool off.  Micah loves to splash and laugh, and gulp down lots of water.

What a great birthday!  Looking forward to all the things to accomplish, plan for, and to make memories of for my 37th year!  Thank you Lord!

Sunday, May 12, 2013

The Influence of a Mom

I have been so blessed with many great woman in my life.  A Mother has much influence and Iam thankful to have some ladies in my life that have a role of "Mother"

My Grandma (AKA Grandma June)  
Grandma watched me some when I was little.  One of my earliest childhood memories is of Grandma making scrambled eggs with ham in it for me and Grandpa while we watched "The Price is Right"  I had them both to myself and loved being with them.  Growing up we knew the wisdom of Grandma and learned so much from her.  She loved her children, that's for sure!  She took care of my Dad with such motherly love, and he adored her in return.  When I arrive in heaven, after I see Jesus, I want to see my Grandma. 
 I miss her so much!

My Mother-in-Law (Denise)
I know the term mother-in-law can be jokingly used negatively.  Not so for me.  Denise is a lady that loves her son (my cute hubby) and raised him with love and care.  I owe much to her.  She has also become my friend.  I love to be with her!  We laugh, shop, share memories, tell Patrick jokes :o)  She's a wonderful Grandma that loves her grandchildren, but also respects me as their Mom.  That is a blessing to me.
I love you Denise!

My Mam-maw
It is so neat how the Lord always seems to work out me getting to see my Mam-maw.  I love it!  Every time we say good-bye, we don't know when the next time will be that we see each other.  But, the Lord always takes care of that! If you met my Mam-maw you would know she is beautiful inside and out. She's a put together lady that is dressed the best at church on Sunday Morning.  And what a faithful lady she is to her church!  When you are with Mam-maw you will make some memories!
She loves her family and loves to just be with us and talk.  Mam-maw treasures her family.  And we treasure her, too!
I love you Mam-maw!

(My aunt Robin)
I have so many memories of my aunt Robin.  Every summer we would visit Michigan to see our relatives there.  Robin would spoil us!  (That's how she earned the name "Momma Michigan")  She was the cool one that would let us have Swiss Cake Rolls and Pepsi for breakfast.  Or stay up late and watch movies.  She would always line us up on the couch while she went into her closet to bring us our gifts.  She would bring out outfit after outfit for us each to wear for the upcoming school year.  I'm talking lots of clothes!  And she has such great style, too!  I loved it!  Now, she spoils my children with clothes and games and lots of packages.  She's amazing and selflessly gives of herself.  If you go to her church you will here countless people brag on Robin.  I'm so blessed to have her for my "Momma Michigan"
I love you Robin!

And of Course....My Mom!
Where do I begin?  I was always always close to my Mom growing up.  Our relationship just grew and grew and she is a friend as well as my Mom.  We have so much in common. We're both #3 in the line up of siblings.  And if you didn't know it, #3's are pretty awesome! :o)  She's my quilting buddy and we call each other daily with quilting dreams and questions.  We're planning a quilting retreat for sometime in the future. It will be in a cabin, in the mountains, with a couple of sewing machines, mounds of fabric, and lots of Coke and Tea Parties!  My Mom is also an amazing Grandma.  Although she thinks her grandchildren do no wrong.  hhhmmm.  :o)  She would do anything for her family and does on a daily basis. Even though her children are all grown, Mom's job is as busy as ever taking care of her 4 girls and being there for every grandchild as much as possible.  Even though we live far from each other now, Mom is there for me 24 hours a day.  And I use my phone quite often to prove it! :o)
I love you Mom!

 Blessed indeed with these  wonderful ladies!