Monday, May 31, 2010

:-) our next journey begins

Once before we got married Nicholas and I talked about some things that we wanted to do in life. One of them we both were able to agree to, but the time frame for it and the nitty little details needed to be agreed upon...there was a little conflict. We wanted to wait until our own children were more grown up to understand the whole thing. After Ashalyn was born we talked more of it and decided to wait even longer. Then the accident happened and in December we talked about it again. We even met with persons to discuss this journey. Then we found ourselves pregnant with Briley and we decided on our own without praying that we still wanted to hold off on this option. Then we had our 15 week checkup (at 17 weeks) and were given some more bad news of our baby no longer living. Now we had been doing some reading and listening to the diagnoses of the doctors and we learned of possible risks of future pregnancies. I have an abnormally misshaped uterus from everything my body has encountered, which could be the reasoning behind Briley not developing into a healthy living baby. So we were devestated to hear that this could possibly affect future pregnancies. So given all this information it became very evident to us that maybe, just maybe, now was our time. So something we have been praying about for months now is adoption. We are not giving up on us having more of our own biological children at this point, but we strongly feel led to the journey of adoption at this time. We have started the process and we have a date for our home study and Nicholas and I could not be more connected to this baby already. Yes, we understand it could be months, maybe even years til we get "our child" but we pray regularly now. We have tears of joy very often and we dream of our life with our baby. The thoughts of this baby consume much of our mind these days and we cannot wait for it all to unfold entirely. Now this is not how we EVER envisioned the adoption to play out when we talked about it after Ashalyn was born...we pictured the adoption years after all our biological children were born and they were old enough to understand why we chose to do this. Also with that we envisioned ALL our children living at home to be part of this journey with us here on Earth. We've had several times where the thought has crossed our mind but without praying we followed our plan in it all and kept pushing it to the back burner, because we weren't "old" enough yet. But, it has continued to tug at our hearts. And "adoption" has crowded billboards and tv commercials and tv shows. It was thrown in our face constantly it seemed....almost like a "hello Valerie and Nicholas...this is God!! Wake up and Listen!" So we began to pray and we strongly feel now is the time. It's time for Ashalyn to have a sibling that she can play with, not just one that she can visit at the grave or in pictures. It feels like we have so much extra love to give because we've been preparing for so long to bring another baby into our lives. And we understand that there are so many out there that are in need of that love from a mother and a father. And we feel this is our way we are supposed to give. We truly wish I was still pregnant with Briley and we really wish Miranda was here to start this journey with us. That is one thing we will NEVER understand while we are here, but we are starting to the work of Miranda's miracle and the life God has for us here.
I journaled my entire pregnancy with Ashalyn in a paper bound notebook and it is our plan to blog our adoption process. Not so much for everyone else but for us, our baby, and for us to connect with other families going through the same process. And with this, we hope people find the desire to pray for us. It's going to be a long process, as well as an emotional journey, as we wait and as we make the decisions as to which baby is right for us, which baby fits into our family and as we connect with the families that we will encounter.
As I said, we are NOT giving up on the idea of more biological children, but that is something we are leaving in the hands of God. He knows what we can emotionally handle and what His plans are for our lives. But until is our time to walk in the journey of adoption. So, this is how we will pray...and how we invite you all to pray for us.
*for the birthparents- as they conceive and carry our baby, the tough decision they need to make as they choose what will be best for their child, as they search prospective adoptive family profiles and they find the adoptive family they feel is the best fit, for the birth mom to refrain from drug and alcohol abuse while carrying the precious child
*financial aspect- already we have paid some of the adoption expenses and know there are MANY many more dollars to be paid. We pray that the finances will come when needed, whether it be through grants or extra hours of work
*for us- as we wait patiently. Already we think about our baby day and night and have had several conversations about our curiousity in our baby, gender, race, name, etc. As we continue to parent and love Ashalyn and remember our two children in Heaven. Our attitudes towards the birth parent as we try to imagine our lives in their shoes and as we are ever so grateful for the decision they will be making. As well as our attitude toward life and cutting out the areas that we have to in order to make this happen financially. And as we continue to pray for God's direction and guidance!
*for Ashalyn- as she learns now sharing, playing, just the keys to being a sibling.
*for our families- as tehy prepare to walk this journey with us. That when it's time they will have the heart to accept this baby as our own and that they understand the time we will have to put lots of time into our classes, etc.
*and for "our baby"- all aspects. Health. Conception (if it hasn't already happened) Protection from anything (drugs, abuse, neglect, emotional hurt etc.) and an open heart to a new family (something they might not understand right away)

And with that...PLEASE join us on this new adventure. Our journey of hope, love and excitement! Join us with love and prayer as we encounter the next phases of life here on earth as a family!!!

Thursday, May 27, 2010


We have been tugged in lots of directions over the course of the last year...but something that keeps tugging at our hearts is something that was discussed prior to this year and keeps coming at us! And NOW is the time. We have been in the process of a new adventure and journey and now it is happening!! We believe it is all part of Miranda's miracle, something we still believe we could have done if she was with us and wish we could do with her...but it's a dream coming true and unraveling as I type! And it now consumes our thoughts and our mind and we are ready to SHOUT IT TO THE MOUNTAIN TOPS!! Revealing it to our family this weekend and then we will be free to share with anyone our hearts desire!!! And I've gotten so much better with the blogging and I cannot wait to blog this journey!!! So if u're interested in what lies ahead...please please check back in with us after this weekend!!!
But until then, if you feel led to pray for us over the next few days and weeks...we'd love for all the prayers we can get! Not only pray for us, but for others that will be influenced by what we are doing, 3 ppl in particular...God knows!!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

It has arrived!


Saturday, May 22, 2010

Summer Grillin' = Once a month cookin'!

Since it was rainy this morning and our zoo plans with friends were canceled I decided to do my once a month cooking today. This summer is going to be extremely busy for us so the quicker we can prepare meals the better. Also we are moving to a house with no AC so the littlest we have to use the stove the better; especially for the sake of my husband. He is definately a hot box and cannot stand the hot weather/heat. And we both LOVE being outside and grillin'. So here is a look into my morning.

7:00 woke up to head to the grocery store. Got home and instantly got to work. Ashalyn insisted in helping mommy, so I didn't get as much done as I had planned but this made it much more fun and meaningful!! I wouldn't have it any other way!!! Since Ashalyn was helping Nicholas even helped to brown the hamburger and do dishes!! WOW!!! I'm the luckiest!!!

So, while he did all 7 lbs of hamburger Ashalyn and I chopped green onions, green peppers, onions and red pepper. (Ashalyn got a butter knife and only the green onions)With that we made our stuffed peppers and steak and shrimp kabobs. 2-3 meals with stuffed peppers and 5 meals of kabobs. We got 10 freezer boxes of ground beef 3 taco meat and the rest hamburger for spaghetti and enchilladas and sloppy joes.

Next, I did 5 meals of chicken. 1 Italian Chicken, 2 Stuffed Mozzarella and Buffalo Chicken, 2 Chicken Cordon Bleu. While all this was happening we had banana's freezing on sticks in the freezer to dip for banana pops. And now I have zuchinni cookies and chocolate chip zuchinni bread baking in the oven. And lastly blueberry muffins.

I wasnt sure how this would go but it was a SUPER fun experience and I definately plan on doing it again! Now, I look forward to eating at home. Not really even thinkin' about going out to eat!!! So not only are we going to be saving lots of time, but HOPEFULLY lots of money on eating in more!!!

Friday, May 21, 2010

Can you really get all that stuff that cheap?

So, after my last post I got an email on facebook. (I had several ppl message me, but this one stuck out) The email said, "did you really get all that stuff for that cheap?" Well, yes I did. So like I said, if you have an hour or two in your week to sit down, look at the ads, make a list and find the coupons it's worth your time. But to show this person that it can be done, here's a look into my shopping trip tonight.

I took the time to go thru the Meijer ad and find items that I knew I would use that were onsale. Then I went through my coupons I collected from the Blade over the past. Then on top of that I use, and So with this shopping trip I got...

*box of guaze (Free)
*Kid's Neosporin
*2 pkg of Oscar Meyer Hotdogs (2/$0.98)
*Loaf of Aunt Millie bread ($0.79)
*Aunt Millie hot dog buns ($0.79)
*big box Velveeta Cheese
*cupcake papers ($0.66)
*tub of country crock margarine ($0.89)
*4 boxes of Orville Popcorn (0.69/box)
*Reynolds Wrap Foil
*Chicken Fries
*Kraft Italian dressing ($0.89)
*Meijer 12 pack Bottled Water (free)
*3 boxes Crystal Light Fitness ($0.33 a piece)
*10 yoplait yogurts ($1.20)
*2 Hillshire Smoked Sausage ($1.00)
*1 shredded cheese
*Scrubbing Bubbles automatic shower cleaner (I made $2.01 off this product. Onsale
for $12.99, I had a $10 off coupon, plus stacked a $5.00 off coupon on top. got it FREE plus $2.01 towards the rest of my purchase.)
*2 Taco Seasoning mix (made $0.48)
*Kit Kat (Ashalyn picked out...not on sale!)
*1 box ziplock freezer bags

Total amount I paid = $41.10
Total Coupon Savings = $63.77

So yes, it is possible to get all that for that cheap!!!! And that's why I recommend couponing!

Once a month cooking and couponing!

I have decided to embark on a new hobby. Well, not sure if "hobby" is the correct term for it, but I do enjoy it and it saves me time and money. Saves me time? Well, it is a LONG drawn out process but in the long run it saves me time.
Nicholas and I have a super bad habit of going out to eat. On average we were eating out about 4 times a week. Now, I'm not lazy and don't like to cook. I actually love it. But by the time I get around to deciding what for supper it's too late to pull anything out of the freezer. So, we decided to try something new for the month of June. This weekend I worked on a menu. I have a menu planned for the entire month. Not only do I have that. I have a list of the groceries I need. As well of all the preperations that can be done ahead of time. And not to forget, I have coupons ready for many of my items.
First I will explain my coupons. I have become a coupon nut. I've read many blogs about couponing. I've experimented. And each time I get better at understanding how it works. The keys I've learned is first to know the stores that double coupons, as well as the stores that accept internet coupons. I've learned that Meijer works best for me. Not only do they double coupons up to $0.50 but they also allow you to stack coupons. What does stacking coupons mean? Well, I'll use one of my examples....Ashalyn loves LOVES loves the yoplait yogurt. I regularly get a coupon for $0.40 off one box of gogurts and $1.00 off two boxes. So at Meijers the boxes of gugurts are $2.49 a box. So the key here is to buy 2 boxes. Totaling $5.00. For that transaction you can use 2 $0.40 off coupon because you are buying two single boxes. (and that coupon doubles) so already you are at $1.60 off. But on top of that you bought two boxes and the $1.00 off coupon can be used as well! That's one FREE box of yogurt and some money off your second box. On rare occassions I can find the deal B1G1 (Buy 1 Get 1) and you can still use all three coupons, so then you get both boxes free plus an overage which goes towards money off the rest of your purchases. So with all that being said, I get lots and lots of GREAT deals.
With coupons on the average shopping trip I save 54-60% off my total purchase. A quick peek into my couponing (for those that aren't interested in couponing please excuse my rambling on, but I highly recommend this for anyone looking to save a dollar!) My last miejer shopping trip I didnt need many groceries but I needed our essentials. However, i got a few extra things because I couldnt pass up the deals and the FREE items. I got a box of band-aids, 3 containers of Huggies wipes, plus a big bag of wipe refills, 2 jumbo boxes of huggies diapers, Nick's deoderant, 1 laundry detergent, 2 3-pack bars of soap, 2 taco seasoning (these made me money to take them off the shelf) 2 boxes of cake mix, 2 frostings, 10 individual yogurts, 2 boxes of gogurt, 2 chex mix, dishwasher soap, 4 lunchables, a 2-liter, and 2 20oz pops all for $56.70. Plus a coupon at the registar for $10.00 off my next purchase, a $5.00 gift card (promotion they ran with the diapers if u read the ad) $1.00 off my next purchase and free cincinatti reds tickets (another promotion....however, we cannot attend because its for a game during the week and Cinci is too far away!) But...granted if u include the $16.00 I got at the end, technically I got all that for $40.00. And the two boxes of diapers without coupons are $19.99 a piece! So basically I paid for the diapers and got the rest free! My total savings for that transaction was $73.74. So, with that extra money we saved...we were able to go out to eat since we were gone all night grocery shopping.
Next, I'll share how I include Ashalyn in this all, since you know I DO NOT like leaving Ashalyn that long. First when I'm cutting out my coupons....I give her a pair of kids scissors and we work on her cutting skills. She still hasn't mastered this, nor is she close, but with each time I give her the scissors and part of the newspaper (she doesnt get to help with my coupons yet, but she does cut up the rest of the paper) she is intrigued by them. She opens and closes them (great hand coordination practice), she LOVES it! And then at the store, I also use it as a learning experience. When I buy more than one item we count them as we put them in the cart. We talk (social communication) as we see things or we take the time to talk to others in the aisles. (she gets many people with her wave!) She's mastered the art (she learned this on her own, I still don't know how I feel about it) of standing on the end of the cart. (muscle development) and honestly we laugh together lots in the grocery store. I'm sure it sounds like a harsh thing to make a child encounter an hour long shopping trip but we have fun and she usually loves it! And with all the money saved we are able to spare a $1.00 for her to spend at the register. She gets the dollar and she hands her item to the cashier and we allow the cashier to hand her the change. If she has pockets she puts it in her pocket and she knows first thing when we get home to head to her piggy bank. Usually there isn't much left but I am learning the importance of "saving" and I want her to learn that as well. And hopefully one day she will understand the concept of the value of a dollar! And not to mention, her piggy bank is ALMOST full and we will be off to add it to her bank account soon!!!
Now that I've rambled on about the coupon part of this new journey I'll explain the next (this shouldnt take as long) for those still reading. The menu. In my menu I have simple meals and elaborate meals depending on the day. For instance, our Monday's are our busiest days, so those are more simple meals. I've allowed us still to eat out once a week. Because that is one thing we enjoy most as a family. Our night out to enjoy each other and have conversation around the table where no work is required on our part. We can just enjoy ourselves worry free! And with this, I mentioned I made a list if all the preparations I can do ahead of time. So I have a day picked out at the end of this month devoted to cooking. I chose a day that Nicholas is home so he can help with Ashalyn. But my day is going to be devoted to browning all the hamburger I need for the month and freezing it. For tacos, enchilladas, spaghetti, you name it. Going to make the cookies or granola or zuchinni bread that I send with Nicholas for break. Basically anything that can be made ahead and frozen I'm going to do. Meatloaf, enchilladas, chicken cordon bleu, meatballs...those area all meals that can be prepared and frozen in casserole pans til ready to pop in the oven. And then to top it all saves me on dishes! I HATE doing dishes. So...instead of everytime I want to make tacos or spaghetti having to clean the pan I brown my meat in, I only have to clean it once!! So...not only does it save me time during the week on meal preperation but even after the meal with clean up!!
I have a full house with babysitting and my last child doesnt leave til 530. so that makes it hard to get a good meal started when we eat at 6 usually. So, it is easier to hop in the truck and go out to eat. I'm hoping with this newfound "hobby" that I can run to the kitchen pull something out of the freezer and pop it in the oven!! Saving us the money it costs to go out as well!!! I definately owe this thought to Rebekah Miller (as I know her!!) and may even document and picture my cooking day as she did! I enjoyed reading about her day and experience!!!

Thursday, May 13, 2010


I am going to share something that many don't know about me, some of you I'm sure have already heard it so please bear with me through it all. This story reminds me everyday how God knows all, long before we do.

About 5 and a half years ago I got one of those forbidden tattoos. I never found tattoos all that intriguing and honestly I'm not sure what propelled me to drive to the tattoo parlor that morning. Never before in my life had I wanted a tattoo. But here is the story behind this tattoo and how it leads to our lives today.

I graduated high school in May, 2001. About a week after I left for Traverse City Michigan. I went up to Little Eden Camp and worked there for the summer. I was dating someone at the time, but very unhappy with him. All the college kids there were either happily dating or in the process of finding love that summer. I remember sitting on the deck at the lodge having a bit of quiet time to myself and 3 small butterflies flew right on by me. And for some reason it sent me into a complete daydream wondering what my life ahead holds....which automatically led me to wonder who I would marry or even if I would. I knew I was off to college in a few short months, so with that I made the decision to pray daily for my future husband. I know that sounds silly because at that time I had no idea who it was or whether I even knew him at that point.

I made it through the first semester of college doing great with this newfound commitment, and then the second, and then....with that my college life started to lead me into some wild times, where slowly I began to forget to pray. I would pray only as life got tough or over big exams....but never praying anymore for my future spouse. I was living a life that could of very easily hurt my husband. And believe it or not, it was yet another butterfly that brought me back to my senses.

It was a night in December 2004 that I couldn't sleep, so I laid in bed with a pencil and a notebook and caught myself to daydream as I wrote. I don't know if any of you ever catch yourself doodling while you are on the phone or kind of in a daze, but that's what I was doing. Without thinkin' what I was doing my pencil began to draw; first a little star that was more like a trinkle than anything (2 of them actually) and then a butterfly....and that's when the tears began to flow.

On my notebook a saw a small little butterfly, that once again reminded me to pray for him whoever he was. So, as the night went on I started praying again....and slowly began to realize that the way I was living my life was definately not honoring our marriage. (once again, still not married or knowing who he was). So after not sleeping almost all night, first thing in the morning I called my friend Emily and said, "you want to go with me to get a tattoo?" I think she was pretty shocked, matter of fact....I WAS SHOCKED! What was I about to do??

I walked into the parlor and the first person I saw, completely covered in tattoos and piercings. "This place is not for me" I thought. So I started to turn around and walk out and something just told it Valerie. So, without more thought than me doodling the night before I walked back and gave the tattoo artist the picture I doodled!! He traced it on my foot and began to ink me up! And that's how I got the tattoo.

Now, my reason? That was my daily reminder to pray for my future, my spouse and my marriage. And at this point, I still did not know who, when or even if! But from that day on,I changed the way I thought about guys and the way I lived the rest of my college days. That hour of pain was the end of a life that very easily could have caused lots of emotional pain/hurt to my husband.

As life progressed I encountered many more butterflies and every single time I saidn an extra prayer that day. So butterflies have always been my thing! And soon after Nicholas and I started dating they became OUR thing!! He was the very first guy I dated that I told the meaning behind my tattoo (and I am so so very thankfull he was so forgiving and understanding from the start!)

So, at the beginning of all this, I said that this story reminds me daily of how God knows all!!! And this is how it all ties into that thought and our lives now. For about 3 weeks before our accident there were 2 butterflies that I think found their home nestled in the tree by our big front window of our house. Literally everyday I'd see these butterflies and just smile! Nicholas would be at work and so I'd say a prayer whenever I'd see them. Praying for a good day for him, his protection at work, whatever came to mind. And now looking back at it and realizing the symbolic meaning behind a butterfly I truly believe that God placed the "butterfly" in our lives to help us "heal" in our grieving of our beautiful Miranda and then with Briley. The butterfly has always helped us to pray for each other and our lives together. The tattoo on my foot was a new beginning to a great new future, that future that I have with Nicholas and our family. And then you'd be amazed at how many poems in memory of lost loved ones talk about the butterfly. At the Memorial Lighting in the neonatel unit at St V's Hospital the ornament on the Christmas tree honoring Miranda was a purple butterfly. For Christmas this year Nicholas' dad got us a gift in memory of Miranda, it was a rose with a butterfly sitting on it. I never knew the true symbolic meaning of a butterfly til now, but I do believe that God placed that one in my life many years ago on the deck at Little Eden to start preparing me for the day He would take my daughter home with Him. The prayers that I prayed for Nicholas before we were together for his path and to help build his faith, I believe to were to help us now. And knowing that and the butterfly has honestly helped us in the grieving process. It amazes us to think how one butterfly led to a simple prayer for our lives together, and then the tattoo of a butterfly led to prayers for us, for the things we will encounter and then the image of a butterfly now reminds us of our precious little girl and our dear Briley.

With all this we are reminded of God's plans being set in place long before we could ever imagine! And with each season I try to remember to pray and to be thankful that 5 years ago I chose to follow the path of a butterfly to the wonderful life I live today.....with my husband that is here to help me through all these trying times, times of tears, times of laughter, times of grief, and times of happiness. So as you can see, the butterfly will always be our thing! We will always smile and remember our children at the sight of the beautiful creature....and to this day, I do NOT regret my tattoo....matter of fact, each day it becomes more and more meaningful and more and more symbolic that we truly owe it all to our Father in Heaven, who has been watching over us as a family for years, long before Nicholas and I were together and long before Ashalyn, Miranda and Briley were created in my womb!

Each day I miss my beautiful children more and more, but I long for and look forward to the day we were reunited at the gates of Heaven!! I'm sure they are enjoying this spring in Jesus' arms and pray that each day as we get closer and closer to seeing them again that the symbol on my foot will continue to remind us of how great that day will be!

Now, with that story being shared, and the pictures from Nicholas and Ashalyn chose to take me to the Butterfly house for mother's day! It was perfect!! Hundreds of butterflies flying around; some landing on us, full of beauty and many colors, all reminding us of our love for each other. And reminding me the reason I have been blessed to be a mother. This life as a mother is not at all what I drempt...but I wouldn't change who my children are for anything. As tough as it is I will someday understand why I was a mother chosen to walk in these shoes....someday I'll get the answers that this earth and life cannot provide for me.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

where to begin

I'm not even sure where to begin at this point. I knew the next month was going to be crazy but seriously, come'on! I was super excited about the months ahead because we had so much going on. I definately like living the fast paced life, but I will be glad when July rolls around. I signed up to help out with different church and community events and they all fall in June, with lots of prep work the months leading up to it! But this blog post brings me back to a post a few weeks back about us moving.
We had met with a loan officer and at this point everything had to be put on hold. All dating back to our accident. As some may know, insurance adjusters DO NOT CARE that they are putting your life on hold when they take their time with a settlement. Very few of our hospital bills have been paid yet....and we were advised NOT to pay them. So, we wait. We wait for the insurance company of the at fault driver to step up and pay the bills. Which in turns, shows up as "pending medical bills" on our credit report. So that credit score that we worked so hard at keeping up is now being destroyed as I type this. Not a whole lot more discouraging as that, as it will affect the rest of our lives.
Now, some may be thinkin'....why would you not pay them. Let me give you a brief insight of what we are looking at. All 3 of us were lifeflighted at $8,000 a piece. Nicholas and Ashalyn were transported to the local hospital first by ambulance at $7,000. Ashalyn's pediatric ICU bill was $17,000, not including her drs, tests, medications, etc. That was for her bed alone that she did NOT sleep in much of the time. I had a fractured skull and the head scan alone was $5,000. Not to mention my 3 surgeries, Nicholas' 4 surgeries, our ICU stay, our Emergancy room appearance, our tests, catscans, xrays, therapy from OT, PT and Speech pathologist. Our continued visits following the accident. And so on. We are ever so greatful for Sauder Manufacturing that picked up and covered most of our bills through our own health insurance...but we are still looking at $70,000 out of pocket at this point. So I am praying and hoping the insurance company steps up real soon.
With all that being said, we have accepted the fact that our current living situation is best for us for now. Or at least we thought!!! Last night our landlord called us and said that their daughter would like to buy the house we are living in and we have til the end of July to find a house and move out. So now we are back on the hunt for finding a place to live. Do we continue our life around here, or do we go back to that last blog about moving away and following certain dreams? We feel almost as if God's saying, "would you listen to me already?" But after we met with the loan officer I turned down the teaching job. So now we're not sure where we will head from here, but in the middle of babysitting, Bible School, Friendship Days, weddings, planned vacations to visit our parents, (it's canning and freezing season too!) we will be house hunting, packing, moving, unpacking, etc. All while trying to yet decern God's calling! Prayers!

Sunday, May 9, 2010

my moments of weakness

I don't know if blogging is what I need right now, but I need SOMETHING. Yesterday was a good day. One thing we notice is that we don't have anything beyond good days all that often anymore. Not because we are depressed but because our lives just aren't complete. A good day with my family should be wonderful, fabulous, etc....but it never will be, because it's just not possible to be complete. We have bad days but never TERRIBLE days. Why? Because terrible is what we experienced back in September. Nothing will ever compare to that kind of terrible. Our GREAT and FABULOUS day will be the day we walk into the gates and our family will be reunited.
Yesterday Nicholas woke me up and we had a wonderful breakfast together. We then went to the butterfly house (which maybe will be another blog) and then out to eat. I had a great time with Nicholas and Ashalyn.
This morning, being mother's day, wasnt going to be anything much different than normal for us. I woke up and had my normal morning routine. I made the mistake of hopping on facebook. I am ever so grateful for all the people that recognized me as a mother today. But let me tell you how hard that was. There were lots of status' to mom's in Heaven that were rather tough on me. I am so thankful I haven't had to experience the death of my mother yet. And I am also very thankful God saved me the day of the accident so Ashalyn had a mother to spend today with....but I'm filled with tears right now, because it's only fair that I could spend my mother's day with all my children.
We knew we'd have to drive seperately to church today because of my responsibilities of Bible with the desire to remain strong I told Nicholas I was headed out. The second I walked out the door I bursted into more tears and I drove down to the cemetary before church. The wind from yesterday had literally destroyed and knocked down the floral wreath and I just needed some time to cry. After fixing the arrangement and replacing it next to her cross...I stumbled my way back to the truck. I was a mess.
For the past few months I've been doing so good. My bad days have become fewer and farther apart. And my good days have gotten closer together and become more regular. People tell me how good I look or how strong I I felt that even today I had to hold that together. I cried the entire way to Walmart. If crying is what you want to call sobbing uncontrollable and catching the cars that pass by in between tears. I pulled into the Walmart parking lot and knew it was time to control myself with a deep breath I pull down the visor to see what damage is done to my mascara...touch it up...and take another deep breath.
If any of you have noticed when you walk into Walmart there is a massive blow of warm air as you walk in the first door. So with that air, I took one more deep breath to fight back the tears. I went about my shopping and right to my left are #1 mom shirts, so I swerve my cart around to the other side of the aisle. I picked up the candy i needed for church and then head back to the pop...and there's the baby I change directions again. Next was the scrapbook section, all while trying to avoid anything that might cause tears today. I was doing pretty good at putting up that guard....but then it was time for church. I walk in the door and the first person walks to me and says, "how's this mother today?" "Pretty good", as I turn my head for a deep breath, to avoid tears. And instantly change the subject to Bible School. Next I'm talking with another mother about a random subject and a pregnant mother just comes and hugs me, so I instantly use another involvement as my breakfree from the tears. And next I'm talking with 2 friends and they too start talking about their children and their complaints of their attitudes, again I find myself excusing me from the conversation to find someone else to talk to. And that quick, another caring woman in our church just walks up and hugs me. I am so thankful for ALL of these women in my life, that showed me today they care! But how is it possible to remain that strong woman people tell me they admire me for???
So we head into church and the sermon started off about all the types of mothers. Mothers who love their children, mothers who neglect their children, and mothers in Heaven? I don't mean to sound selfish, but what about us mothers who have children in Heaven? That have to spend mother's day here on earth without them? Today I felt that I was in a whole different category as a mother. I'm supposed to still be that STONG woman that EVERYONE calls "MOM" but today I just feel like crying.
The sermon goes on and I don't listen to a single word because I'm still dwelling on all these types of mom's. I fit under the category of mother that loves her children...I feel like I fit under the category of mother that neglects her children, not by choice but because I don't hold them, I dont kiss them goodnight, I dont read to them, I dont bathe, dress, feed why can't I be that mother in Heaven? Why can't I spend my day in Heaven with 2 of my children? AND WHY DO I HAVE TO BE THAT MOTHER that people don't mention on days like today?
Not only then did I have to sit through the sermon with these thoughts....but Miranda's baby dedication was supposed to be today. Ashalyn was dedicated on Mother's day last year and today was the day Miranda would have been dedicated as well. So all the baby's that she would have grown up in Sunday School was their special day! Today was the day that I would have soooo proudly stood up there with her and promised to raise her in a loving Christian home. What better way to spend your mother's day then dedicating your little one to the Lord?
I just cannot say my mother's day was a fabulous day. BUT I CAN SAY, I AM SO VERY THANKFUL for my TWO blessings today.....that I have an amazing daughter that in between my tears can still make mommy smile and still feel blessed and that I have an amazing husband and best friend that allows me to be weak at times and just grabs me and hugs me when I cry.

Our sweet Miranda

Our sweet Miranda


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