"Two" much fun!!

I cannot believe that today my firstborn is 2! It really does seem like just a couple weeks ago he was sitting in his bouncy chair and playing in his Johnny Jump-Up toy. It feels like just last month we were studying the ultrasound pictures and trying to figure out who he/she would look like (for the record, he looks just like Dad with a hint of Mom!). It seems only a short time has passed since our empty arms ached for a newborn to hold. But as of today at 2:52pm, two years have passed since Dylan graced this world with his presence. Now he is 2 and has but the world to conquer! I praise the Lord for this birthday, for many parents never get to celebrate it with their children. I praise the Lord for the fact that he talks like he is 3, for many parents never get to hear the sound of their child's voice. I praise the Lord for the fact that (accept for the occasional sinus/allergy problem) he is healthy, for many children are battling illness and disability.

Tim and I truly thank the Lord for what a blessing Dylan is in our lives. Few occasions can redefine one's life the way having a child can. When I think about the love I have for Dylan, I am reminded of the parallel that must exist between our love for our children and God's love for us. Even just the littlest things Dylan does are pleasing to me and bring me joy. Each smile, each laughter, each song, each word are are treasurable things. Each fall, each tear, each cry are concerning things. My favorite thing as a parent is to have my child in my presence and to be in good communication with him. Does God feel this way toward us? Surely so, and much more-- As evidence by so many of the Psalms in the Scriptures.
Yesterday we celebrated with a birthday party in all its toddler glory, complete with a Cars theme. Among the many wonderful gifts Dylan received were the items needed to complete the makeover of his room. He is now officially a Cars fanatic! Many of Dylan's friends and family were able to come and we were so grateful to have them! Click on any of the pictures below for a closer look!

Cupid was running late...and tales of bathroom humor

Tim and I finally got a chance to spend a romantic evening together last night! We had our Valentine's celebration over a nice quiet dinner and spent the evening together (Dylan spent the night at Nana and Babu's). Better late than never for Cupid. I felt bad because Tim was not able to spend time on his paper yesterday, but I so enjoyed spending time with him. Relationships definitely need that boost that positive interaction time can bring.

I have been thinking for awhile now that I need to post more pictures featuring my husband and my son...together. I said something outloud about it yesterday, and Tim said "I've been thinking that too". Okay, so 'Hello', I can take a hint. Here is a picture taken during last week's brief but strong thunder & lightening storm. Dylan was definitely not feeling secure during the storm...until his daddy held him in his arms. Daddy lovingly explained what lightening and thunder are, and how to count the seconds after you see lightening to know when the thunder is coming. By the end of the storm Dylan was saying "See dat lighting?" and counting "One, two, three, boooom!" You have to understand that Dylan is NOT a "still" child; he is always moving. So this was a truly precious sight - which lasted for 15 minutes. And which his daddy treasured.
The phrase 'potty training' is one which strikes fear in the heart of any mother of toddlers. We have had Mr. Potty in our hall bathroom for many months now, but have not been insisting on his use. Within the last couple of months, though, Dylan has taken a real interest in it. He has definitely not mastered it, but he is making great strides. Two weeks ago #2's began happening in the potty and he has successfully done that about 4 times (although he yells "Uh Oh" when he does). He will generally go when asked, but seldom will ask or tell you of his need.

It is still somewhat of a novelty item to him, but he has quickly learned that pottying is something that he has the ability to control. What I mean by that is he knows that by saying things like "Go out Mommy!" or "Go somemore" or "Need go potty gen", he can manipulate his schedule and do what he wants to. I figure it is the first step in him figuring out how to master bladder/bowel control. In the meantime, he is very proud of others when they succesfully complete their potty attempts. And he is trying to teach his friends!


I honestly can't say that I remember a Valentine's Day since being married where we were this busy - where Tim and I seemed to be going in so many different directions. Nonetheless, my sweet Valentine put forth the effort and made the time to come by my work and surprise me with 2 dozen of the most beautiful coral-peach roses I have ever seen. I truly love roses (as evidenced by my 9 rose bushes outside our house) because of their visual appeal and their fragrant appeal. Our office sure did smell delicious today! My gift to Tim was a coupon card for a fantastic evening together in the near future - now, if we can just find the time to work out our schedules so we can make it happen!
Dylan had a fun day at daycare celebrating Valentine's. His day was complete with what I like to call a "junk food party" and a Valentine exchange. This is him on Heart Day:

It is easy to show love to someone in light of a holiday like this. Gushy, froo-froo, I Love You cards given by men to women who give them chocolate or a new pair of boxers. It is not rocket science to love someone who loves you back. But the Bible has this to say about love:

I Jn 4:10-12 This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us.


Goldfish and Whales

February is here but we are seeing our share of tolerable weather - which we have been taking advantage of by being outside. Yesterday we spent the day at the local park with my friend and her daughter. It is fun watching the two 2-year-olds interact! The girl is already somewhat more physically coordinated than Dylan, but he is too busy exploring nooks and crannies to care! Our pediatrician asked us at our last visit if Dylan was stringing 2 or 3 words together yet, to which Tim and I both responded "Oh yes!" But this week he has begun to form complete sentences, with nouns, verbs, and prepositions. We were truly amazed as he said on the way to church this morning "I want some goldfish". Now, that was not just him asking for a snack. He realized in that little almost-2-year-old mind that we were on our way to church, where they serve goldfish every Sunday. Talk about cognition! But then again, I am biased...
One Silly Boy

My journey through the Bible took me to Jonah yesterday (speaking of fish, huh?!) and I learned something new from this timeless story. The name Jonah in the Hebrew means "dove". That struck me as interesting because in alot of ways Jonah was like a dove. He was intended to be a messenger to the people of Ninevah, and while his message was not one of peace, it was intended to bring them back to God who is the peace-giver of life. However, Jonah "ran away from the Lord (Ch. 1, v. 3)" and became like another Biblical description of doves: easily deceived and senseless. When I read a passage that I have read over and over again and find a fresh stream of truth in it, it is then that I truly realize that "The Word of God is living and active. Sharper than any two-edged sword..." Heb. 4:12

Feeling better

After a full week of being 'down' with illness, I am finally back at work today. Thank the Lord for Nana's who can take care of grandsons while Mommies recover! I had a combo respiratory bug & stomach virus that kept me feeling miserable for quite sometime. I managed to give Nana my stomach bug and Grammy my respiratory bug. Who says I don't share? But Dylan and Tim are well, which is a huge blessing.

We are still awaiting news from Tim's interview. At last check, the company was still 'deliberating' on their choice. In the meantime, a promotion has come up for Tim at his current job and he thinks he may get it this week. Please pray for him whenever our family comes to your mind -- Tim has about a month left to finish working on his Master's thesis. And he has 10-page papers due every other week until the end of the semester. It is going to be tough on him, but we are down to the home-stretch of the seminary race!

Dylan is doing great - amazing us everyday with his vocabulary. He is not yet 2 but is telling people "preeshate it" (appreciate it) when he wants to thank them. And he loves to sing songs to himself and his stuffed animals. Such a joy...

I started a 'read through the Bible' plan a couple weeks ago. The plan I'm on lets you read through the Bible in 3 years, instead of the one-year plan (I am a goal-oriented person and knew that I would fail at a one-year plan!) One of the recent reading assignments had me reading through Hebrews 2, which is a great chapter. These verses touched me most.

14 - Since the children have flesh and blood, he too shared in their humanity so that by his death he might destroy him who holds the power of death - that is, the devil - 15 and free those who all their lives were held in slavery by their fear of death.

17 - For this reason he had to be made like his brothers in every way, in order that he might become a merciful and faithful high priest in service to God, and that he might make atonement for the sins of the people. 18 Because he himself suffered when he was tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted.

There is so much hope and encouragement in this passage of scripture. And to me, this reveals to me a very personal Jesus, and yet a very power Jesus. I pray these ministered to your heart as you read them.

We continue to seek the Lord's will in regards to chaplaincy. We have made contacts with many personnel and now await their responses as well as guidance from God. Thank you for the many words of encouragement and the caring questions you have voiced.

Have a great Super Tuesday and a wonderful week. Get out there and vote -- my motto is if you don't vote, don't complain!

From Drowning in Disappointments to Upheld by Hope

It’s not supposed to be this way... I chose to revisit one of my favorite books yesterday.  (Love Lysa’s story!) And my whole heart resonat...