Friday, February 27, 2009

Pictures from Opal's 1st Birthday

Opal playing with the alphabet drum that she got from Aunt Nancy and Cousin Oliver

Opal sitting in front of Grandma Wendy. Grammy Alice is taking the picture ~ we were playing bounce the balloon.

Opal's My Little Pony Birthday Cupcakes (what a cool idea, order a cupcake cake and then you don't need forks, plates - great idea Suzanne!) Opal sitting in her new chair and Grammy Alice giving Opal a bottle.

Isn't our little precious Opal just beautiful! We thank God for this little miracle. Opal weighed 16 lbs 11 oz on her first birthday!! No more feeding tubes or O2 tubes ~

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Today, February 24, 2009!

Today is Opal's 1st birthday. Her party is this evening. I will post pictures after we get home. I have been thinking about her and the last year. She has definitely come a long way. She started out at 1 lb 15 oz and 13 1/2" long. She now weighs, I think, close to or over 15 lbs. She is no longer dependent on O2 or her feeding tube. She loves to stand and has the biggest grin. She is definitely a joy in our lives.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Celebrate Winter

"Celebrate Winter" that was the title of my devotion this morning. My first thought was to celebrate the beauty of winter: the snow, the crisp morning air, and the evergreens that stand so tall here in Washington. My thoughts couldn't be farther from what the writer of the devotion had in mind.

First I turned to the scripture that goes along with the title, Psalm 42. The first thing I noticed was a note I had written on July 16, 2004 - from Charles, so many times when I am struggling and once again today as Jamie returns to Iraq and JC's funeral. I immediately found myself back to that day. Feeling sad and anxious about Jamie going back to war. I had struggled so much in the previous months he was there, worry of would he return (he did on 3/11/05) and feelings of sadness about the loss of a dear friend and a friendship that had suffered over the previous two years (mine and Julie's, JC's daughter ~ another story in itself). I remember praying for Julie that day and my decision to stay away from the funeral out of respect for Julie. I heard later she had wondered if I would be there...

Psalm 42 is filled with questions regarding despair and hope. So many reminders that God is with me whenever, wherever and however I am doing. the dear my soul pants tears have been my question "where is your God"
...these things I I shouted with joy and thanksgiving
...why am I downcast...put your hope in God
...deep calls to deep...when I read this I think of being overwhelmed, in so deep not even sure how to get out day the Lord directs his love, at night his song is with me...
...I call unto God who is my Rock "why have you forgotten me?" and He replies "I am here my child"
...put your hope in God, for I will yet praise Him, my Savior and my God!

words of reminder that God is with me, even in my greatest despair and hardest struggles. Never forget Alice, that God loves you and will never ever leave you! Thank you Lord for this strong reminder on this chilly morning.

So now as I think of "celebrating winter" I think of celebrating the dark days of depression (not wanting to be in those days but acknowledging they are a part of me), that even though some days are so difficult for me I can remember and remind myself that God is with me every step of the way and He will never leave me. Though I stumble and fall, He will pick me up again and again. Though my mind wanders to places of major despair he replaces those thoughts with memories of my dear children and delightful grandchildren - reasons to live and celebrate each and every day.

So I close with a thank you to the Lord this morning: thank you for the reminder that you are always near, that your love will never leave me and all I have to do is call on your name and you will be beside me.

Friday, February 6, 2009

A Rainy Morning

It is a cold and wet rainy morning here in Blaine. I don't think I am complaining just commenting. Yesterday was a beautiful sunny day.

I have not posted a lot lately, not sure what to write. So thought today I would just drop in, add a couple pictures of the kiddo's, and say hello.

When we were in Las Vegas last fall after my sister's death, we were able to go to the cemetery where Royce is buried. Here is a picture of his marker. Sometimes it is hard to believe that he has been gone for over 31 years. Sometimes I wonder what he would be like had he lived but then I remember that he had many health complications and life would not have been easy for him.

In reflecting about Royce, I am reminded how blessed I am to have Jamie and Brandon here with us. Jamie is doing we
ll. Busy working at Fred Meyer's in the electronics department and helping Suzanne in raising Opal. Opal is almost a year old. She has been the trooper and is growing stronger every day. She is now off of all the oxygen and is trying hard to walk. Here are a couple of pictures of her from earlier. I will get lots of pictures on her birthday to share.

The above picture was taken around Thanksgiving. Because I was so sick with a bad cold at Christmas time we were not able to spend any time with Jamie, Suzanne or Opal.

Here is a picture of Max and Christopher taken at Christmas time when we were in Boise. I hope to get more pictures from Danalyn & Brandon that I can share with all of you.

Well, I guess this is all for today. I will write more later. Hope everyone has a good day.