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Thursday, October 27, 2011

Blog Bash 2011





I love a good party - and since we just moved  - These are the only parties I'm invited to lately. (hahha, i'm just kidding, people here are so wonderful and we are fitting in nicely). I'm linking up over at Women Living Well Blog bash!

This is the most recent updated picture of my family
So that's a little about myself already. My name is Jessica. I grew up as a missionary kid in Ecuador since I was 2. I tell you that b/c that has completely shaped who i am today, how I think, and my desires for my kids. My parents are still living there. I went to a small bible college and there met the man of my dreams who took a while to realize I was in front of his nose. :) he finally did come to his senses and noticed one of his best friends would make a "fun" wife, so we got married November 2006. (Yup, soon will be 5 yr anniversary). He is from Western Colorado and we lived in his home town for about 10 months before we moved across the country to Scranton PA. We had a wonderful almost 4 yrs there and met tons of wonderful friends and people who shaped our lives, all while Richard attended Seminary. In may of this year, he got his masters, so we had to think of what we wanted to do next. Oh yeah, we also had 2 kids while we were there. :) Carson is 2 and half, and Landon 13 months. We had a great community of young families in our church and it was the perfect setting for us to start ours with so much wisdom and support there.

To make a long story short  we decided July 2011 to move by faith to Fort Collins CO, to help out a church plant called The Crossing. So August 13th we packed up our truck and pulled out of the place where my 2 children were born.  It was a huge move, and Richard did not have a job at first, and we only knew one couple in Fort Collins. It's been so amazing to watch God provide a job for Richard, and you can read that story here. To be completely calm and sure that God led us here, and watch details work out both in the church and in our lives. To see how God is molding us and changing us and using us, bringing Glory to Himself, has been amazing and just what we needed as a family. And slowly we are gaining new friends. Although we miss our good friends in PA, we have great people here that we are getting to know so well and enjoying that.

I recently wrote a big blog about why I blog, you can go here to read about that. And please do, b/c I really was able to share my heart there.
I usually blog in the afternoon while both my boys are napping. And I truly cherish that time. I love being able to share my heart and read great stories about other's lives. I guess you can say it's my outlet for the day. :)

I love my boys to death but am learning so much about this whole parenting thing. I love staying at home with them and spending my days with them. It's not always easy and i easily get frustrated but I would never change my circumstances right now. It's wonderful to have the flexibilty to go out or help others in need. And I truly want these days that I am at home to be profitable for my boys, for me, and for others.

I would love for you to join us on our journey as we help in the church, learn how to live this life glorifying God, and living in Grace that he graciously bestows on us. I would love for you to watch as we make Fort Collins our new home, and see how God provides for our daily needs. And we absolutely love being back in Colorado!

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I'm also linking up at Fall Followers Fest over at "The Wiegands" and that link up party! Lots of parties to attend this time of year. So exciting. Hope to see you back soon. :)

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Parenting

Some of you know I've been pretty discouraged lately about parenting issues with Carson. He is a normal 2 year old and he has really been pushing the limits for a few months now, and it just kept getting worse and worse.
There was one night I said to Richard, "I think it really would be easier to just give up, let him do whatever he wants all day and not listen to the screaming fits all day long". I really considered that. I felt defeated, like a terrible mother, and at a complete loss of how to handle his sinful nature and direct him towards obedience. I saw so much anger and frustration in my heart and mind that I was completely discouraged. I couldn't overcome the frustration and patience that had run out!
Richard has been so encouraging to me, and praying for both of us about this issue. I have been seeking God for wisdom and strength every day. I know this sounds a little ridiculous but I just didn't know if i had any more patience in me to go through another day.

Now I also realize that Carson has had a crazy few weeks that hasn't helped the situation. He was sick a few weeks ago, then hadn't been napping or sleeping well at nights, then we had visitors, a trip to MN, a weekend away, and going out all the time. We were hardly just at home for more than a day, and his schedule was all messed up. So I know this played a huge part.

Well this weekend and this week so far, I have really concentrated on the sleeping issue and the routine aspect of our lives. And I can see the fruits of it, I think.

This week I have begged God for wisdom, asked my mom for help, asked friends for help, and Richard and I have talked a lot about it!
Today my friends (and even yesterday) i have seen a different young man. Who knows why, but I'm thankful for the break. He has been pretty compliant, and so very pleasant, playing with his toys, sitting with me to read books, etc. I have made a huge effort to spend some quality time with him, to remain calm and patient in what could escalate to a terrible situation with him, and I'm happy to say, today has been a good day. God has graciously given us all the Grace that we needed and a little break from all these fits and disobedience lately.

A friend from the past sent me a little note on Facebook the other day, and she was so encouraging. She also attached a prayer from a book called "the power of a praying parent". I haven't read the book and also don't know much about the author or anything, but this prayer was so encouraging to me. And I will paste it here for all to read!


Lord, I submit myself to You.  I realize that parenting a child in the way You would have me to is beyond my human abilities.  I know I need You to help me.  I want to partner with You and partake of Your gifts of wisdom, discernment, revelation, and guidance.  I also need Your strength and patience, along with a generous portion of Your love flowing through me.  Teach me how to love the way You love.  Where I need to be healed, delivered, changed, matured, or made whole, I invite You to do that in me.  Help me to walk in righteousness and integrity before You.  Teach me Your ways, enable me to obey You commandments and do only what is pleasing in Your sight.  May the beauty of Your Spirit be so evident in me that I will be a godly role model.  Give me the communication, teaching and nuturing skills that I must have.  Make me the parent You want me to be and teach me how to pray and truly intercede for the life of this child.  Lord, You said in Your Word, “Whatever things you ask in prayer, believing, you will receive” (Matthew 21:22).  In Jesus’ name I ask that You will increase my faith to believe for all the things You’ve put on my heart to pray for concerning this child.

 
I know that being a parent is such a privilege. God has been burdening my heart with how much a mother's attitude and countenance affects and directs the household, and that is where I was getting so discouraged b/c I felt so inadequate in this area. But I know God gives me grace, he forgives, and gives strength to overcome my sinful flesh - and for that I am humbled and thankful and leaning on Him. Seriously I think I'm learning more about life and godliness than my boys are!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Fall family Pictures

Apparently we were too busy on Saturday and all the events wore my family out! Saturday night around dinner time, Landon started throwing up. yup, you heard that right! I know what all of you are thinking - weren't you guys just sick? Do you not eat healthy? Why are you guys always sick? I know, I know, I'm just as dumbfounded and annoyed at this as you are. Later that night Richard got very sick!!! So no church for us. 
If you can believe it or not, when we were sick 2 weeks ago, we missed our "Porterbrook" session, and Sunday AM we missed another one before church. I think our Pastor might think we are doing something on purpose. Our new church friends must think that we are always sick. And truthfully we are lately. It's so weird, b/c i don't think we are sick this often. 
I know when you move to a new place you are susceptible to sickness, b/c of different viruses and bugs in that area, so i was prepared for us to be "cold" sick a lot this winter. but not stomach sick so many times in the fall!!!!! But oh well. I guess I'll have to swallow my pride and admit that "yes, we are sick again, and try as I might to be clean and healthy it still happened to us". 

So our plans of Porterbrook training, church, then date night were all canceled. And we spent the day inside as a family with football, movies, chicken noodle soup, ginger ale, and saltines all day!!!! YUCK!!

By about 5pm Richard was doing better and Landon was too. We all needed a little fresh air and change of scenery so we got dressed and headed to a near by park. It was perfect temperature out. And we took our annual Fall Family Pictures. I told Richard that I really want to set this as a tradition. I just love fall so much, and I think it will be great to get good fall pics every year to keep our family pictures updated. (but we did find it hard to work with a timer and the boys). I think we got a couple good ones at least.




 
 

Cutie even if he wasn't feeling the greatest

Such a ham



I love you Richard!


Saturday, October 22, 2011

Galloping Goose 10K

Today was the "long"-awaited 10K race! I had the privilege of starting off with my awesome Sister in Law! My Goal starting out this year was to run a 10K before the winter came, and when we decided to move I wondered if it would really happen. Thankful that my sis in law took the initiative to find this race for us so we had something to aim towards. :) Once you register there is no turning back. 
I also had been training pretty good until about 2 weeks before the race. i felt confident in it until then. :( B/c we were so busy it was hard to get good runs in, so I was a little unprepared. Also something I didnt' take into consideration was that the course was all gravel. This really makes a difference - less traction or something, i was way more tired than usual. Plus the course seemed exceptionally hilly. With a huge hill on mile 1 and 4 and then many smaller rolling hills the rest of the run! I was pretty exhausted by the end. I had wanted to make it under an hour and i really wanted to do about a 56 minutes or less. Sadly I could not accomplish any of my goals. :( Maybe I should learn to not underestimate running in Colorado, see here
I ran it in 1 hour and 9 sec.  avg pace 9:39 min mile
6th in my age category
46th overall
(there were not that many runners) 
I guess I'm happy with 6th in my age category. :) (18-29)
Autumn and I before the race
nervous but ready


Carson had so much fun playing with his Cousin Aspen




 I love these next few pictures: 
Landon 13 months, Axel 10 months (twins) :)
I love how they are looking at each other


I love his hand on landon's back

Finishing very tired
But loved hearing Carson yelling
"mommy" as I came through the finish line

Autumn finishing well
 After our race we went straight to the Denver Zoo! It's a great Zoo! And beautiful weather! The first time we've taken the boys and it was so fun!
See the tiger to the left of them?

There really is a polar bear behind us :)
Look at Landon's great smile!

 

Then they rode the Carousel ride at the end!
It was fun to spend the day with family. We were all tired after a few hours of the Zoo and we only saw about half of it! But it was still such a great day!

Now I'm at home resting. :)

Friday, October 21, 2011

Minneapolis

I had the wonderful opportunity to fly out last Saturday to see my Younger sister, her new baby, Dominic, and my mother who flew in to help her. I was so thankful for how the trip worked out, how God provided for us, and the timing was perfect. I always hate leaving Richard and it is a lot of work to travel with my 2 boys by myself, but it was all totally worth it! 
Grammie and her newest Grandson

We had a direct flight to MN and I was so thankful for that. The boys did relatively ok but didn't sleep at all. Carson had to go to the bathroom once, but the nice stewardess was helpful and held Landon for me. (boy did not realize how tiny those bathroom are until you try to take a toddler in there with you!). 

Grammie with her 2nd youngest Grandson
Sweet, sweet Dominic!
So while we were there, we had a great time galavanting all around. We went out to eat to my  mom's favorite Olive Garden and a cool French Bakery place. We had Caribou coffee often and really Lived IT UP! :) My sister lives 2 miles from the mall of America and an IKEA. So you guessed it, we spent a lot of time there. :) I could not get over how HUGE the MofA is!!!!  So HUMUNGOUS! We could've walked around there forever it felt like. There was so much to see and do for the boys. it was a lot of fun.



 They had a whole lego place that they boys loved right beside the amusement park. Carson kept going back and forth from playing with legos to looking at the "trains" (rollercoasters) that kept zooming by us.

 



Landon loved all the baby things to cra

Carson's "nap" time :)

The boys got very little sleep the whole trip. And we all know how that aids to toddlerhood "tantrums". But we survived. I was so happy when they fell asleep in the stroller so we could shop longer. Basically the only naps they got was in the car rides or the stroller, so we made sure to take our time walking around IKEA to ensure a good long nap. :)

They flights back weren't as smooth as on the way there. The boys were very tired and mommy was tired. I could go on about how figitey a 1 year old is on your lap and how hard airports are when they are crowded and only snack foods all day for the boys, but when I step back and think about it, overall it went as good as can be expected. I had nice men sitting next to me each plane ride, and the last one (which the boys did the worst on) he was the nicest and most helpful. Carson obeyed through security, and on and off the planes which is when I really needed him to stay with me and pay attention. (since at those times he was not strapped into stroller). And even the delays that seemed annoying, turned out better in the long run. So overall a good trip.

But needless to say I was a tired momma falling into Richard's arms at the airport. I literally brought one sleeping baby inside the house and went straight to bed, while Richard brought the rest of the stuff in. Thank goodness for men. :)
It was wonderful to see my sister and see the new baby, and see her in her new role as a mother. She will be the best mother for Dominic and I'm so happy for her to experience the joys and intense love and emotion of motherhood.

Now tomorrow is my big 10 K race! I was not able to train the last 2 weeks as much as I would've liked. :( Up until last week, i was training well and felt good about the race, but since then it's been up and down. I did run 2 times while in MN for about 4 and half miles at a good pace. So let's hope that keeps me going during the race. I will admit I'm a little burnt out from running and look forward to the break when this race is done. I have high goals set for the race, and I'm nervous about meeting them. But in the end, it's all about enjoyment, so I need to try to keep my focus on enjoying it. Don't worry - I'll be sure to let you all know how it goes. :)
Meanwhile - gotta get the boys taken care of and our lives back in order from the trip. boys need some serious restful activities. (who am I kidding, momma needs that more :) )

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Fun Fall Activity

Fall is a lot of People's favorite season! And I will have to also jump on the bandwagon and say that it is mine also. I love this time of year. I get very grumpy in the hot, sweaty weather. And probably the only things I love about summer are less socks to wash and match, and the sun shining more often. 
Fall in CO is proving to be wonderful. So sunny! Little rain (so far anyways) and beautiful fresh air to breathe in. Perfect for jeans and sweatshirts and cuddle time with the family in evenings and early mornings, but good nice "park day" weather during the day. 
As you've probably noticed around here - we've had a busy schedule. (read previous post). But boy was it tons of fun so far! It started out last week, Wednesday. In the evening Richard's parents came to town. I love that they get to see our boys more often, and I really love that Carson especially really recognizes them and responds so well to them. 
On Friday of last week, we all went down to Denver to spend some good time with more family. Richard's brother and his 2 kids and wife live there. And also Richard's sister and her brand new husband. :) (welcome to the family, Chris)  
We went to a beautiful place called Hudson Gardens. It was the perfect warm sunny fall day. So much for the boys to do. Running around in the pretty flowers, watching the train go around the tracks, playing in the pumpkin patch. So much fun! I love fall activities.
Cool Fountain
train going around
on train tracks









Afterwards we went out to eat together. Although the boys were super tired from the day's activities we had a great time as a family!  We love being so close to more family members - but we really do miss the 3 families we left behind in PA. Too bad we have to all live so far away! It is a sad part of life. Thankful for technology to make it easier.

Stay tuned for more "stories" of our latest adventures
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