Thursday, July 30, 2009

Seeing God in the everyday...

I love it when God sends me little reminders.

Getting ready for our sweet little babe.
While cleaning up car seats and strollers,
God reminded me yet again that He is in control.
I love how He teaches lessons in such gentle and beautiful ways.

Crosses in clothespins.

"Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith..."
~Hebrews 12:2~

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

This Boy...

Silas John

"Blessed is the man
who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked
or stand in the way of sinners
or sit in the seat of mockers.

But his delight is in the law of the LORD,
and on his law he meditates day and night.

He is like a TREE planted by streams of water,
which yields its fruit in season
and whose leaf does not wither.
Whatever he does prospers."

~Psalm 1:1-3~

On July 27th, three years ago, we were blessed with the gift of this precious little boy.

His name comes from the latin for 'tree', and we delight in watching him sprout up and grow.

He is our little farmer.

His eyes sparkle at the mention of riding in the tractor with Opa or Uncle Garry.

He looks just like his daddy, right down to the gap in his front teeth.

He loves to snuggle with mommy. Still. For now.

He drinks more warm milk each day than a baby calf. It's a good thing our milk is free.

Three years ago, he was in such a hurry to arrive that we didn't even make it to the

delivery room at the hospital. And his feet are still racing, taking him on adventures every day.

We can't wait to see where God takes him

We love you little man!!

Enjoying his birthday:

:: a delicious mix of delight and uncertainty

:: getting in some rough and tumble time with daddy

:: enjoying birthday cupcakes from some very special relatives
Thank you!! xoxo

:: big adventures for a 3 year old and his sister

:: The perfect end to a big boy day
Thank you Aunty So King and Uncle Man!

We had a wonderful time celebrating our Silas-boy.
He is such a treasure and we thank God for him every day.
We love you, oh so much, Silas John.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Blessings in disguise...

"You are the one who put me together inside my mother's body,

and I praise you because of the wonderful way you created me.

Everything you do is marvelous! Of this I have no doubt."

~Psalm 139:13-14~

What a sweet little babe!! I know I'm the mother, so I'm obviously quite biased, but have you ever seen such a beautiful little face...and those cheeks!!! I can't wait to kiss them a million times over! I went in yesterday morning for the ultrasound and Baby K.'s heart is a-okay!! All its parts are functioning properly and it raced along between 132 bpm and 157 bpm. Wonderful! The ultrasound tech said that they are actually taught that anything between 100 -200 is just fine, and they actually like to see a big variance in the heart rates because it shows the baby is developing the ability to transition through various stages of rest and activity. So, as far as the heart is concerned, a great result. The U.T. went on to check the baby's growth and the more questions she asked, the more I laughed! First, "Were your other babies big?" (Gracie was 8 lbs 6 oz., Silas was 9 lbs, and Levi was 7 lbs 14 oz - but two weeks early, and Baby K. is weighing in at 4 lbs already!) and then "Does your husband have a big head?" does one respond to that!!! The reason she asked is because the baby's head circumference is measuring at 33 weeks (we're only at 29 weeks). Apparently the head size is a genetic trait that is carried by the males. She remarked that it's a good thing this is my fourth baby! LOL! She showed me the growth charts and while Baby is right on average for leg and head to rump length, its in the 97th percentile for weight and absolutely off the charts for head circumference. Oy!!

We did, however, get some surprising news which may, or may not, turn out to be more serious. It appears that our sweet little one is missing a kidney. There's a possibility that the ultrasound was just 'off' and they'll try again in the next week or two to see if it shows up. It could also be 'lost in traffic' (the kidneys travel up into position while the baby is forming, until they eventually fall into place) and are either stuck somewhere or are just still making they're way up. There's also the possibility that our baby only has one kidney. The outcome of this ranges everywhere from totally inconsequencial to potentially serious. We find out next week what the doctor wants to do. Some doctor's will just leave it for the time being and wait until the baby is born to do follow up testing. We may go back for a repeat ultrasound to see if anything has changed. Or we could get sent to McMaster for a 3-D ultrasound to see what's going on, and if there's anything else that isn't showing up on our small town unit. So we'll keep you updated, as best as we can. Right now, we're really feeling at peace with everything. This definitely falls into the category of "Worrying about it doesn't change anything" and so we'll just deal with things as they come. Thank you for your prayers. What struck me most through all of this was that if not for the low heart rate, this ultrasound wouldn't even have been done and we wouldn't even know about this. Thank you Lord for uncovering the unknown! And also, the U.T. could've just checked the heart and monitered the heart rate and ended it at that. But she was very thorough and went above and beyond what was required, which led to the missing kidney discovery. Thank you for praying about the ultrasound. I truly believe that this is an answered prayer. So, as unsettling as this potentially is, we are truly grateful for what is happening. Again, I'll try my best to keep things updated here, as we covet your prayers. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! What a blessing to know that we are covered.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

A wee prayer request...

Once again, waaaay behind in the blogging. I'm so sorry. We're still having problems with our internet, and life has been beyond busy this past week. I won't add a picture to this post and hopefully it will load before our connection 'times out'. As wonderful as modern technology is, it can sure be frustrating sometimes!
Anyways, the reason for this post is a quick little prayer request. I had a regular pre-natal check-up yesterday and when the doctor checked the baby's heart rate it was only 108 bpm, for about a minute. After some poking and prodding she managed to get it up to 130 bpm, but was concerned that it had been so low. A normal heart rate for a baby (in the womb) is between 120 and 160 bpm. Baby K's heart rate has consistently been around 140, so even the 130 would be more of a resting heart rate. It could be just a fluke, or a very deep sleep, but the doctor wants to make sure that there's nothing that we're missing and so I'm off for an ultrasound tomorrow morning. If you could just pray that the ultrasound tech will get some good clear pictures and if there is anything that we need to be aware of, that it would be very evident. I'm not too worried- sweet babe has been as busy as ever kicking and squirming and jabbing me all throughout the day and night - but it will be nice to get the ultrasound done and confirm that everything's on the right track. Thank you for your prayers, encouragement and support. We feel so blessed by our 'virtual prayer circle' and thank God for each and every one of you! We'll keep you posted...

"...We have placed our confidence in Him, and He will continue to rescue us.
And you are helping us by praying for us.
Then many people will give thanks because God has graciously
answered so many prayers for our safety."
~2 Corinthians 1:10,11~

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

This Girl...

Gracie Jo Koobs

Her name means "God's gracious gift".
And she is living up to her name in oh so many ways.
Named after my Oma Meinen, Grada Johanna, Gracie Jo seems
to also have taken on many traits that Oma was well known for.
She is very determined, can be somewhat bossy, is
incredibly nosy and has a fierce love for her family.
She is such a precious gift.

Five years ago, I was feeling both elated and terrified as
we left the hospital. I seriously wondered at the fact that we could
bring this screaming, eight pound six ounce bundle home
with us, where we would be solely and completely
responsible for her. They didn't even make us write a test.

And now, five years later, I marvel at this girl.
She amazes me each and every day.
Seeing God at work in her heart and her life astonishes me.
Who she has become, despite our best intentions, humbles me.
The joy she has for life is contagious and touches so many.
She loves deeply, from her heart.
And the love Peter and I have for her overwhelms us.
And we continue to be filled with gratefulness for
God's gracious gift.

'Every good and perfect gift is from above,
coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights...'
~James 1:17 ~

Gracie Jo was ready to go before six o'clock in the morning.
This girl lives to party.

She chose the menu for the day.

It was the most beautiful day for a birthday.

Full of bubblelicious fun.

Barbie and her most hilarious edible 'cake-dress'.

..which Gracie Jo was absolutely thrilled with!

And nothing beats celebrating, princess-style, with beloved Aunt Michelle!

Happy Birthday Gracie Jo!
We love you so much.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Return to the land of the living...

"But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ."
~1 Corinthians 15:57~

We're back - and doing great!! I'm so sorry for not getting up a post before now. I can't believe over a week has already gone by! To all of you who sent messages and called to see how we're doing - THANK YOU! Last weeks disappearance was due to 'internet malfunctions', I know many of your were worried that it was related to baby troubles, but we're doing just fine! 'Baby K' seems content for now to stay safely tucked away and get in a few more weeks of growing. I'm continuing to feel overwhelmed with gratefulness...

:: For 4 sleep-ins in a row! My parents took Gracie Jo and Silas on their first camping trip last
week. I missed them soooo much...but sleeping until 6:30 every morning was divine!

:: For the bag of books and magazines that came along with a special delivery from Peter's aunt

:: The messages and e-mails that continue to come and make us feel so loved

:: For maternity clothes that fit!

:: For a ginormous pot of chili that the whole family LOVED!

:: Freshly baked cherry squares, with cherries lovingly picked straight off the tree. So yummy!

:: For our runaway calves who graciously allowed themselves to be rounded up and loaded onto
the truck without me chasing them all through the back forty. Phew!

:: And last, but not least, this girl...
...who we are celebrating today. But she deserves a post all of her own. Stay tuned!

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Consider this...

"Consider how the lilies grow.
They don't fuss with their appearance—

but have you ever seen color and design quite like it?
The ten best-dressed men and women in the country
look shabby alongside them.
If God gives such attention to the wildflowers,
most of them never even seen,
don't you think he'll attend to you, take pride in you, do his best for you?"
~Luke 12:27, 28 (The Message, NIV)~

These beautiful flowers are blooming in our front garden right now.
I love looking out the window and seeing their bright splash
of colour - especially with all the rain we've been having. They're so
warm and cheerful. The best part about them is that I had absolutely
nothing to do with them being there! After much debate, I'll swallow my pride
and show you this picture of the garden the lilies are in...

So this is the state of our front flower bed. Yipes! It was weeded
back in June, but I didn't have time to mulch the whole front bed.
After that week of hot weather, and now all the rain, the weeds have
reclaimed their territory. They're even taking over the pathway
to the front door (good thing no one ever uses the front door of a farm house!).
Anyways, my plans had been to conquer this jungle this week.
Apparently, however, this doesn't fit in with the 'take it easy'
that the doctor ordered. Sigh. At first I was really frustrated
by the work that has been piling up....well, okay, if I think about it too
much, I still get frustrated by the work that is piling up .
But God is patiently teaching me something amidst all of this.
Remember the lilies? Notice how they keep on growing,
despite the weeds that are crowding in? That's right.
Life hasn't stopped just because I have baskets of
unfolded laundry in each bedroom. The barn chores are still
getting done without me, my family is still eating three meals a day,
the kids are happy playing with play-doh and are full of stories when they come
in from the barn with Peter. We're doing just fine.
And even though the shower hasn't been cleaned, the lawn needs to
be mowed, the kitchen floor is still sticky with the juice Levi spilled
yesterday morning and our kitchen windows still have bedsheets over
them because I haven't finished sewing the curtains,
our sweet little one is safe and content
tucked away in their little cocoon. Thank you Father!

So today I will remember the lilies....

"What I'm trying to do here is get you to relax,
not be so preoccupied with getting

so you can respond to God's giving
People who don't know God and the way he works
fuss over these things,
but you know both God and how he works.

Seek the Kingdom of God above all else,
and he will give you everything you need."
~Luke12:29-31 (The Message, NLT)~

Thank you again for all your love and prayers.
God is truly using you to give
our family the most precious gifts. xoxox

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Giving thanks...

"Gratitude bestows reverence,
allowing us to encounter everyday epiphanies,
those transcendent moments of awe
that change forever how we experience life and the world."
-John Milton

Today my heart is overwhelmed with thankfulness.
Praise for a Father who knows exactly what I need, even before I do.
Whose love and care for our family goes beyond anything I could have asked for or imagined.
Who is graciously supplying us beyond our needs.
Today I am remembering Opa and counting my blessings...

:: a beautiful bouquet of Sweet Williams that came along with our dinner yesterday

:: a phone that rings, carrying messages of love, concern and promises of prayer

:: a friend who hunts down an open grocery store on Canada Day and brings us some staples

:: no less than 5 offers for a hot meal delivered to our doorstep

:: cousins who have 'been there' offering timely advice and reminders of what's really important

:: a husband who I could literally write pages about (but will spare you )

:: three children who are so unused to me lying on the couch during the day, are sure it must be
an open invitation for some extra-special cuddle time

:: one sweet babe who seems content for now to rest in mama's womb

Thank you for all your messages. Your thoughts. Your prayers. Your offers of meals and everything from babysitting to laundry folding to garden weeding. We are so blessed to be loved by you. We are definitely overwhelmed. And thankful beyond words. God is so good!

"This service that you perform is not only supplying the needs of God's people
but is also overflowing in many expressions of thanks to God."
~2 Corinthians 9:12~

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

The latest...

I had an unplanned visit to the doctor's yesterday. Anyone uninterested in the details of pregnancy-related things please feel free to skip this post and just pray that our little bundle decides to hang out for at least another 10 weeks before making their grand appearance. For the rest of you...
Last Saturday night I started having a bit of spotting, which went away Sunday morning and then came back Sunday night. I wasn't too worried because on Monday morning, I felt a little tired, but fine. But then all of a sudden around supper time on Monday I starting feeling really sick. Nauseous, fever, my back hurt really bad and and so after having a bath I went straight to bed. I was sick through the night and having a lot more contractions than normal. I was still not feeling great the next morning and when I went out to help Pete in the barn, I fainted. So we went to the doctors and they ruled out a U.T.I. (bladder infection) which I thought may be causing everything. They were, however, concerned about signs of pre-term labour. They wanted to do a Fetal Fibronectin test (for an easy to understand explanation about this check out but I would have had to go to the hospital and potentially wait a few hours to have it done. Since we had left the kids at home with friends, I was anxious to get back and so they did a visual internal inspection of my cervix. I wasn't dilated, but the doctor did feel the cervix looked iritated. It's possible I've just picked up a virus which is causing all this and the bleeding was just from over-doing it last week, but they sent me home with strict orders to 'take it easy' and if I have any more bleeding and the contractions don't settle down, I have to go straight to the hospital for the fFN test . I had a fairly restful sleep last night, and the 'sicky' feeling seems to be gone this morning, but if I'm on my feet too long, I still feel kind of light headed. Peter is the most amazing guy in the world - taking on the role of both mommy and daddy while I 'take it easy'. He knows I'm not very good at just sitting back and letting other people (including him) do 'my work', and every now and then he gives me one of those looks and I know I had better get back to the couch. Please pray for us through these next few days. 1) That my body recovers from this virus/or pre-term labour 2)That baby stays safely tucked away and continues growing inside me for at least 10 more weeks - 14 weeks would be full term. 3) It's very hard for me to just 'take it easy'. Please pray that I will accept the help that's offered and let my body regain it's strength 4) For Peter, to have the energy and strength to keep up with all the farm work and for taking care of all of us and 5) thankfulness for the support and understanding of our parents as Peter spends a bit extra time at home right now, and for friends who helped watch the kids yesterday while I was at the doctors and helped Peter sort our calves for shipping this week. We're so blessed by and thankful for our family and friends. This includes all of you! We covet and cherish your prayers and I will do my best to keep you up to date with how things are going here. Thank you again for all your prayers.
The LORD is my strength and my shield;
my heart trusts in him, and I am helped.
My heart leaps for joy
and I will give thanks to him in song.
~Psalm 28:7~