Sunday, March 06, 2011

An Amazing Day

What a glorious day this has been both weather wise and how I spent it. I started out spending time with Jessa for her birthday by going downtown to the Iditarod. I enjoyed myself tremendously. The crowds were unbelievable thus why very few pictures. We didn't see much of the actual dog race, but it's the whole atmosphere of it all. We went into several shops and then we had the famous M.A.s hot dogs (where we saw Lisa Murkowski, whoopee). The line was really long but it was well worth the wait. It was a great morning spent with her and being outdoors felt good.

I've said many times over that my biggest regret in coming to Alaska was that I didn't come when I was younger and could climb to the top of these mountains our young people climb. Micah Peter came to me and asked if they found a way to get me up there. Well with pulleys, a sled and Micah, Matthew and Nathan, we started out with them getting me to the top of Mount Baldy. I was praying leading up to today and today that I wasn't being foolish in trying to do this. But so like my mom, I feel young at heart, but body hasn't got the message. So bundled up, we headed up and these 3 young men gave me a most amazing afternoon. I experience God's beauty and that was the ultimate goal. I also experience exhilaration and some great fear as we climbed. As we got to the steeper part I crawled, walked, rode Matt's back (which I was really afraid doing and asked not to continue on after the first break). We didn't make it to the top but I've got further up then I've been on foot and these young men made it happen. BUT because we didn't get to the top, we couldn't slide down the other side in all the snow as had planned and had to go back the way we came up over rocks and tundra with Nate and Micah being the rear brakes and Matt being the front brakes. I was sooooo afraid of how this was going to work through the rocks, brush and deep snow. I was close to tears as my biggest fear of the day, it was getting dark. I was praying and I tell it brought back the fun of being a child as we headed down the mountain at high speeds with the guys loving every minute (minus the terrible leg cramps Matt and Micah got). These 3 were challenged mentally and physically and loved every minute of it.
Like I said a most amazing day. Here's some pictures of it. Though I didn't do much, this 51 year old is going to feel the effects of this entire day tomorrow (what do I mean tomorrow, I already do). But it was great fun. The guys asked if we could try again and they'd go a different way to get me response, uh NO I don't think so. And Micah actually apologize for not getting me to the top. I don't think he or the other two have any idea of how special what they did for me means to me. I truly feel loved by these young men. Now if I would've come out of it hurt and maimed, I would have thought differently ~ not really. Thanks guys. I love you all.

Here's the pictures.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Forever and a Day

Don't pass out - I know it's been forever and a day since I've posted. I've tried several times over the last couple months but I thought I had been locked out as it wouldn't even let me comment on other blogs; but it turns out there's something wrong with my Firefox and my blogger (per Jenna) so she had me go through Outlook. So I'm back. I don't know how faithful I'll be but I'll try.

Life has been really different over the last year. Becoming a grandma is the next best thing than being a mother (some times even better because I don't have them all the time ~ tee hee ~ having said that, I really would love to have them more often than I do). Grandpa babysits Savannah twice a week and I leave those morning wishing I could change places with him. Watching Savannah and Noah grow up is one of life's greatest joys for me. I look back and really see how our children's lives change our life as they grow up. I have gone from having three daughers, whom I've always had a close relationship with and we did almost everything together as a family, even after they became adults, to adding two young men into our family through Levi and Dallas. Both very different from each other, but both of which I love very much. Then add in my granddaughter and grandson; they now have their own family. When they say they want to be with their family, that doesn't mean Jody and I any more. Many nights I've cried and prayed for these two young men and my girls and their little ones. I want to be there for my daughters but not be "meddling" in their lives. I have been blessed to have ALL my girls close. I knew one day that would change and that change is coming sooner than I had hoped (but I can't talk about that yet, I'm still coming to terms with my oldest daughter LEAVING ME and not her just leaving but taking my little grandson with her.) Once again, another change that I'm having to deal with. God will help me, I know but....maybe some day I can share the tearing of my heart over this, that I desperately cry out to God daily to help me prepare for.

I have so many things to share, and would like to, but too often the written word is taken wrong and I can't say all that's in my heart to do it justice any way.

Bottom line, one word sums up my life these last several months and that is CHANGE!!!! For the first time in over 36 years I am not the youth leader. I asked to step down as I felt like though my spirit is willing my flesh is weak. Though my heart still beats for the youth, my body won't let me do everything they like and need to do. Along with that, I want and need to be able to help out with the little ones so their mommy's and daddy's can be involved. Fortunately, I still have some of the youth through the ABM as I am a bandleader over 9 out of the 13 youth. I love our youth as if they're my own. Some days I wish I didn't as I hurt when I see them struggle. I don't think any of them even begin to know how much this pastor's wife prays for them and has even cried for them.

I definitely can't sum up all the missed months in one blog and I have no intention of even trying to do so. On a lighter note....I can't wait for winter to pass, I'm so ready to truly enjoy othe outdoors by BEING outdoors and not just looking at it. Oh to be able to take my grandbabies OUTSIDE for walks, and to the park. Soon, it'll be here soon (I'm trying to convice myself, sorry)!

For now I'll leave you some of my favorite pictures of my favorite babies.

Sunday, August 08, 2010

Ready, Get Set....

Well crunch time for IYC and the assembly is right before me. I really didn't think I would be going to International Youth Camp this year as Jessa was due on the 31st of July and that would be just too soon for this grandma to live her daughter, son-in-law and grandson. But God had other plans and IYC here I come. I didn't think it would be that big of a deal for me to miss IYC but it's been so many years that I have gone that I actually can't imagine not going. I am really looking forward to that. There are two things that are on the down side, my husband won't be at IYC and still definitely need your prayers as to be able to make it to the assembly. He has only one hour yes, just ONE HOUR to get someone to work for him as for him to be able to go. I am trusting the Lord though. The tough part is we hope to BUY him a full ticket instead of him flying the stressful way of going standby. As we all know the closer to departure time the more expensive those tickets get. BUT it's in God's hands. Secondly, I will so have withdrawls from my grandbabies. It's amazing how much a part of my life they have become in such a short time. I am sooooo blessed to have them nearby. I wish they and their family would be coming also. Hopefully next year. I am thankful that we have iPhone 4 and we actually can do face time. Hopefully Jessa can go over to our house and use Joleesa's phone. I love my girls and I adore my grandbabies.

So any way it's time to get ready and to get set as my flight leaves out Thursday evening. I arrive in Asheville on Friday afternoon and my precious Sister Perkins will be there to pick me up and I'll be spending the Friday afternoon and evening with her. Then I'll meet up with the dear Williams Saturday morning early to meet up with the Hays as to get everything set for IYC.

I am soooo excited. The longing for the fellowship is HUGE, top with with looking forward to the feasting that Lord has for me (and I will be focusing on ME as their are things MY soul is in need of) at both IYC and the assembly. Anticipation is definitely present.

Monday, July 19, 2010

The Apples of Grandma's Eyes

Noah snoozin on grandma's lap. He is such a doll.

My little lady. She's so precious.

My life has been changed forever by these two precious gifts.

Monday, July 05, 2010

Noah Finds Land on July 2nd

Noah finally left the ark at 9:25 am July 2nd weighing in at 6 lbs 4 oz, 17 1/2" long (little shortie, but has a long torso). 4 weeks early. July 1st at 2:45 am Jessa's water broke with no for warning of any kind of labor. At the hospital they waited 12 hours to allow the contractions to begin on their own. A few little contractions occurred but didn't make any difference. At 2 pm they induced labor. Off and running she began having HUGE contractions. 12 hours of contractions "on steroids" (as Jessa puts it), they said she could begin to push so I called Jody and the girls back to the hospital thinking it would be any time now. Though Noah had decided the water needed to go, he wasn't sure he wanted to see land (smile). He kept turning himself every which way and with every two pushes down he receded back a push. Then he got stuck behind Jessa's pelvic bone. That little stinker was afraid of the outside world. Jessa pushed for 7 hours through some horrendous pain. Tears were flowing down my face as I watched my daughter, exhausted, push through with no breaks in between contractions (this was even WITH an epidural)a side effect of pittison. She was on the border of needing a c-section but she was determined to not come this far only to have to do have that. The last option was forceps to turn him and pull him out. If that didn't work within 2 minutes they would have to do a c-section. Prayers were going up everywhere as we even stopped right there and had prayer. PTL he just slid right out once they turned him right and moved him away from her pelvic bone. The NICU team was waiting to receive him, as is common procedure for assisted deliveries. They moved quickly through his examine and PTL said he was healthy and could stay with mom and dad and put him on mom bare chest and he right away warmed up. He is the cutest little guy with lots of black hair and dark eyes (not sure yet if they're dark blue, or brown). Such a perfect miracle. Mom tore internally and externally which require lots of stitches. My daughter, Jessa is a CHAMPION marathon runner. I am so proud of her. She is so sore she can't hardly hold her son but she is right there doing all she can. She can't hardly sit or find a comfortable position but she continues to find a way to nurse. Levi is right there figuring out how to take care of his son with one hand. It's great to watch him rise to the challenge and conquer!

God is so good. I have felt like July 1st was just 4 days long as they didn't get to come home until July 4th. Jessa and Levi's celebration was better then any 4th of July celebration (it's just their celebration was in their hearts, as our bodies are exhausted). God has changed my life all over again as I now have a GRANDSON and a GRANDDAUGHTER.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

I'll Never tire of the View

from my living room window. The mountains take on attitude. Today they are being invaded by clouds but the green grass peeks through as the clouds circle around. They almost look overwhelmed by the clouds (that could preach). Other days the sun makes them just glow. Last night, a rainbow came out of them. Even on the dreariest day, I love my mountains.

I know it's been five weeks since I've posted, it's not due to my not attempting to. Two major reasons I hadn't. 1)I just didn't know what to say (doesn't make sense, I know), and 2) When I did start to post, my computer went out on me. For weeks my computer was over heating. I'd be on it for 5-10 minutes and then it would just die on me. Took it to Best Buy and the warranty was expired and they said they thought it was the hard drive. Someone at work recommended this other computer place that had a very quick turn around and great service. Well Brother Nowling was not happy about their turn around time or their service, but 3 days and $100 later, I have my computer back. The fan was gooped up with dust and all not allowing it to work. I actually think the fan hasn't worked for a year or more because I had it in to Best Buy once before because it would get so hot and I kept getting the blue screen...get this they told me it didn't have a fan. Ugh. Any way I have my computer back.

So what's been going on...I think I shared ladies retreat and the Perkins. I really miss them. I was just thinking how they would get up in the morning and go sit on the deck with their morning coffee and enjoy the day no matter how cool it was outside. It was so peaceful. Just a few minutes ago I was longing for Brother Nowling not to have to work the night shift so we could be enjoying those kinds of mornings together. Any way, moving on.

After Perkins left things went into full swing for convention and camp. I told Brother Grant we needed ladies retreat back in April as only 3 weeks between the two about killed me physically and stress wise. Yay, it is back to April. We had the Hawkins here for convention and camp. We had a revival spirit going in to it and God blessed mightily. We had 26 in camp (including the two babies and a pregnant Jessa). I tell you Satan fought along the way with things regarding camp, so I knew it was going to be good. Our theme was "Shapened to Serve". Brother Hawkins preached on getting the dirt out. You could feel the struggle of individuals as they didn't want to let go of things in their life that was causing "dirt" to remain. As he preached about letting go of some of the things in the world that creep into the Christian's life such as video games and some movie sagas such as Twilight you could really see the struggles even on faces let alone at the altar. The Lord put it on me Monday night to have the bonfire start earlier and for individuals to write on paper the things that were revealed to them to get out of their lives and burn them. We went from the altar service down to the fire and through them in. I knew there were some that were holding back and some that threw it in but though it burned on the paper it was still in their heart. Tuesday night the power came down and one camper asked if we could have the fire again. WOW the power at the fire that night as we became "set apart". We had our baptismal following at about 9 pm and even in the chill of the evening (and the water) you could feel the victory. At camp and since I realized the great responsibility we have to hold to these commitments AND to not be a stumbling block to those who God has dealt with certain things in particular. To help to hold them accountable and US accountable so that we don't lose out in the end.

We really enjoyed the time with the Hawkins, my only complaint was there wasn't enough time with them. Following camp we had a Heritage Day revival that Jenna was in charge of with Jared Nolen. Jenna did a great job moderating. It was something watching her try to find the Lord's direction at the end of a service. It was glorious time in the Lord as well.

At camp several of us got colds (including the Hawkins). Little Savannah got really congested but God watched over her and she's doing much better. I am still struggling with what is probably a sinus infection. But God is so good.

I've been loving watching my little granddaughter Savannah. I believe it was Brother Perkins made the statement that babies are new every day. That is so true as I watch her change every day. She is such a good baby. Full of smiles. I love to hear her little laugh and watch her play with her feet. I love to cuddle with her either the first thing in the morning, or the last thing at night and pray with her for her daddy to come to know Jesus and for her mommy to show here daddy and her Jesus in everything she says and does. Joleesa is a wonderful mommy. She loves her little girl and is proving that she wants to raise her for the Lord. Dallas loves Savannah very much too (and Joleesa). He is a good young man, he needs to know Jesus personally...Please help me pray for him.

Oh and my dear oldest daughter, Jessa. She is so beautiful as an expectant mother. She has had to deal with some things during here pregnancy that I didn't, such as stabilizing her thyroid and now having gestational diabetes. She's called out to God to take away her fears. I've watched Levi and her as they prepare for our grandson to enter this world. I can't wait to hold little Noah. I will be in the delivery room with her as I was with Joleesa. I have to say, I'm a bit apprehensive of what my role will be with Jessa. With Joleesa, I was there for Joleesa. To keep her comfortable and listen to what she wanted and be her mouth if I needed to as her situation was different. Levi's gone to birthing classes with Jessa...he's the husband, I don't want to overstep him but I'm Jessa's mother. I'm a woman. But I've learned to stand back and watch and step in when needed (though that's not my comfort zone), that's what I'll do on that day. I think Jessa's more patient then I am at this time. I hold Savannah and I remember Joleesa being afraid that we wouldn't love her like we should, and my love for that little girl is so HUGE and I think how amazing God is because I know I have more love in me to wrap around the miracle of life of NOAH. Jessa has dreamed about being married and having a baby and it's happening. It's amazing how LOVE is so endless. Noah I am so excited to be able to see and hold you for the first time.

I've been saying how I have entered another season of my life. I watched Jessa, Jenna and Joleesa at the piano one night of convention and felt so old but so proud as my three grown daughters sung and worshipped the Lord. Now as they begin to raise their children for the Lord my prayers are raised for them to have wisdom beyond measure to stand up against the world for their children.

If Jessa delivers in time I am looking at going to IYC and the assembly. Bless Brother Hays' heart that he goes by faith that I'll be there. I want to be there, but I WILL be there for my daughter as she delivers her first child. I truly believe God has it all under control and I'll be able to be a part of both.

I'd like to put pictures up, but that's one of the disadvantages to relying on others for pictures, I didn't take too many myself. We have pictures and videos of convention and camp but they were done by Jenna and Levi. So I'm at their mercy. I do have a few pictures of the Hawkins as we made the trip to and from camp. I'll have to get them off my camera. Brother Nowling, and the Hawkins and I went to the SourDough Mining Company for dinner one night and on the spur of the moment decided to drive up to Flat Top Mountain but get this, NONE of us had a camera (except our phones).

So does this make up for 5 weeks...Now I need to try to get some house cleaning done as I've been invaded by baby swings, play rugs, changing tables, chairs, etc. It feels like everything is closing in on me, even in this big house so I need to try to get things organized differently. So God bless everyone until the next time...

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Busy, Busy, Busy and it's just going to get Busier

Wow. I didn't realize it had been a month today since I last blogged. Life is just so busy. I don't know even where to start. I know there's that's happened before but I'm going to begin with ladies retreat. It was a great ladies retreat. We were so blessed to have the Perkins here. I have known Sister Perkins for many years through IYC. Last year, we shared a room with her as I flew into North Carolina and rode with the Williams to IYC and so did Sister Deborah. We shared a late night of talking, laughing and crying. As I sought the Lord for an evangelist for ladies retreat, it was made very clear to me it was to be her. BUT she is deathly afraid of heights and had never flown. We promised her we wouldn't bring her without bringing Brother Danny. It's always fun watching someone lean on the Lord to conquer fears and that she did. When I talked to her when she got to Seattle she said she felt the Lord just carried through the air to Seattle. Flying standby can be tough but everything went so smoothly for them.

We then had a great retreat with 15 in attendance and 5 babies. Only 4 of us were over the age of 30. It was a blessed retreat as everyone helped out with the babies and the Lord ministered through classes and messages. We were able to take the Perkins to Hatchers Pass and once again watching God work was great as for a moment Sister Deborah laid her head down and grabbed my hand with her cold clammy hand only to sit back up, determined to enjoy every minute. That she truly did. Saturday night we had a shower for Jessa. Though we were all exhausted the ladies and Levi had great laughs together once again. Sunday night we were blessed as the Holy Ghost moved in our worship and as Sister Perkins preached on Joseph. It was a glorious time in the Lord.

Monday we headed to Portage Glacier and Seward. Such sweet fellowship we had along the way as enjoyed the handiwork of our Lord. We came back so Brother Nowling could go to work and we headed to Earthquake Park (Joleesa joined us) where Sister Deborah could FINALLY see HOW the Sleeping Lady was the Sleeping Lady.

Brother Danny and Brother Nowling are so much a like it was pretty awesome. I am so glad they had their time together as well. Here in Alaska there aren't too many people our age as we are blessed with such a young church. We LOVE THEM ALL DEARLY. But it is such a treasure when we find a couple like the Perkins where you just enjoy yourself thoroughly talking about the Lord and life in general. The men are so a like that even when we went out to eat, twice they both ordered the exact same thing... We came home and Joleesa built a fire in the fire pit and our Southern friends enjoyed a crisp night around the fire telling stories about our families.

Tuesday Jessa joined us and we went downtown and met Jenna for brunch and then we shopped the souvenir shops. Brother Danny became a man of few words again amongst all of us women but he was patient with us as we spent 5 hours shopping. Then we headed home and Levi met us and we went to the Sour Dough Mining Company for dinner.

We were so blessed to have them in our home. Now my plate is full trying to get ready for camp. Work has been hugely stressful for several weeks along with everything else so please pray for me.