Yesterday baby hit 35 weeks in the cooker. I can’t bend over without holding my breath, and turning from one side to another in bed requires “the flop”. Nothing is graceful anymore. Putting on my socks requires great skill of dextrity and balance, of which I have none right now. Once they’re on, they’re on to stay. I’m grateful I haven’t burned my belly on the stove yet… that usually happens at least once, at least mildly. But I do love the tiny foot in my right side, constantly stretching and growing and reminding me that soon I will get to tickle that foot and kiss the nose that accompanies the little body housed in my crowded tummy. I am thrilled that in one more week, if I go into labor, the birth center where I’m going will let me deliver. We’re just so excited to meet her!
January 21st Matthew will be going to Haiti for a week with a team from our church. We’re excited for this opportunity! Please pray for our family here while he is gone, as we will have a new baby and sometimes the first couple weeks can be an extra bit challenging! If you would like to financially support the trip, we suggest you look at the website www.cpr-3.com which is the organization the team will be going with. You can make a tax-deductible check out to Gateway Church with Matthew’s name in the memo. You can mail it to our home, or to the church. I will include those two addresses at the end of this letter. Matthew’s health has been great. He continues to run, even in twenty-degree weather! He goes to the Dr. next week and will find out if there are any latest changes from his last round of blood work.
Nadine worked for two weeks straight on a fairy book, which consisted of a notebook with pages and pages of drawn fairies, their houses, and what they make. It was so fun to see her creativity blossom into those pages! She’s not really artsy, so this it was especially fun to watch. She prefers to take care of her stuffed animals, serve them tea five times a day from her tiny tea set, or play outside. This morning the boys were running around and she said, “Yes, they lost their convenience.” I’m not exactly sure what she meant by that.
Elijah’s sweet spot in life is scientific discoveries. Yesterday he made an electromagnetic device and had fun experimenting with it. His Science teacher online is “Dr. Algae” but he always calls him “Dr. Allergy”. It’s his favorite thing about school. He also has skill at remembering how to spell words, and just remembering in general! I pray that his ability to speak extremely loudly will be used for God’s glory. Sometimes I don’t think of it that way.
Jack, along with some help from his siblings, but I’d still say he’s the biggest culprit, cleans out our cupboards weekly. His ability to eat ginormous portions and STILL be hungry an hour later, never ceases to amaze me. From ten-inch carrots, to a huge bowl of oats with bananas AND blueberries, to three platefuls of spaghetti… yeah, I could go on. Oh, he also likes unsweetened coffee and espresso… though we don’t indulge him but with a sip here and there. His other enjoyment in life is shooting things and building things. He currently has a necklace made out of safety pins right now… temporarily replacing his usual necklace of chain or pretend gold. He “loves shiny things” so he says and calls most things golden. His pockets continue to bring me smiles whenever I empty them to do laundry. It’s always exciting to see what he thought was special enough to carry around ALL day in his pocket. A few coins (he has an uncanny knack at finding them), the tiny baby Jesus from the manger scene, angel wings from the other nativity set, a paper clip, a glass marble, a screw. He’s growing up, and after losing his bear SOMEwhere in the house, hasn’t slept with it for at least a week, and is very brave about it.
Elsie, Elsie, Elsie. Sometimes it just suits to say her name three times in a row. When we tuck her in bed at night it never ceases to amaze me how she sleeps with everything that’s in there. She has her bunny, her blanket, her baby, her books. She knows when one is missing. We’ve never had a child like her. She stays in the school room the whole morning and either colors or cuts paper with a little pair of scissors. “I need my cut,” she will say. She likes to get dressed. A lot. Before her head pokes through her shirt she will say, “Where is me?” The other day at breakfast she woke up her usual cheery self (I say that with a hint of sarcasm) and when someone chuckled or smiled in her direction she said, “It’s NOT FUNNY!” Which of course made us all laugh the more. She definitely likes to have fun, but maybe just not first thing in the morning.
I’ve been struggling with making time for my own personal time with God each day. It was so helpful to talk to Matt about it, confess my need for change, ask God to please remind me of His awesomeness and speak to my deaf heart so I can hear. The answer came this morning as I read Luke 5. As we seek the Lord about some changes to our family and Matt’s work, sometimes we have fear about the unknown. Jesus gave Simon a clear instruction that seemed a little impractical: to go out in the middle of the day, instead of at night, to catch some fish in the deep water. Whether Simon was obeying with faith, or out of exhaustion because there was nothing else to do, he obeyed. What he experienced was nothing short of a miracle! Then after they hauled all of those fish to the shore, Jesus told him “Do not be afraid anymore. From now on you will catch men [in order to free them]!” Then Simon left it all and followed Him. When we try to do things on our own, there is fear. When we leave it all up to Jesus, we are amazed and see His provision. This is something we are trying to embrace with our whole lives.
160 Cowan Road,
Parkesburg, PA 19365
408 Madison St.
Coatesville, PA 19320