Saturday, June 28, 2008

A new Vue

Saturn Vue

Interesting to note: Grace has been on a Chitty Chitty Bang Bang kick yesterday & today. We've watched the movie twice now. With a bit of free time, I watched some of this classic film with Gracie. The castle scenes were most definitely Neuschwanstein & the Vulgarian village scene really reminded me of Rothenburg...just blogging about it earlier this morning. Googled filming locations & sure enough, Neuschwanstein and Rothenburg. Ha! How funny...I was just talking about that charming village. Here are some pictures from the movie website. Bob has some Neuschwanstein pics somewhere. Ask Randy about his castle adventures with his FRIENDS. :o)

Waiting for Grace

Now that summer classes are offically over, I've been working on some photo journaling stuff. During the search for a couple specific photos, I ran across my pregnancy journal - a most wonderful gift from my cherished friend, Renee. I read through it again, noting a couple things. First, I did an amazing amount of travel during my last month...really, lots & I'm sure, had I asked, most would not have been approved by my doctor or my mother. Here's the list:
  • 25 days before due date: Keukenhof, Holland - the tulip festival was breath taking...or maybe those were my Braxton Hicks labor pains?? Lovely indeed & I'm so glad I went. That seaside visit was refreshing - I still remember the smell of the salt spray. And now I know, South Holland nor Holland, MI hold a candle to the real deal!

  • 9 days & counting: Garmish & on to Austria for a stroll & some sun by my favorite little moutain lake: Plansee
  • 5 days pre-due date: Rothenburg - who could pass up a festival in this historically charming village on the Romantic Road?? Not me...
  • due date plus 8 days: no action according to the doctor, come back Monday. Yes, we are going to Italy, Tracy!! How can you be so close to the world & not see it? We made the trip to Venice in back in just two days. Not much time there, but just enough for my sister & neice to see why I loved it so. Of course, I had all the hospitals mapped out & action plan in place just in case. Plus Venice was only 6 hours away with 2 army bases/facilities in between... :o) It was fine really.

The second thing I discovered while perusing life in preparation for Grace, the prayer I compiled from scripture as she made her debut still needs to be typed. With the combination of waterworks & my handwriting, it's a wonder how my sister, Tracy, even made it through the prayer- some parts are just plain hard to read. It's well past time to translate, so here goes...

Father, thank you for your presence; for being here to welcome baby Grace into the world. Your word says that you are her creator. She was in your care even before she was born this day. Long before she was conceived in my womb, she was conceived in Your mind and in Your heart. You planned her though I did not. You thought of Grace first. It is not fate, nor chance, nor luck, nor coincidence that she is breathing this very moment. She is alive because You wanted to create her.

Lord, You said, "I will fulfill My purpose for Grace." God, you prescribed every single detail of Grace's body. You deliberately chose her race, color of skin, her hair and every other feature. You custom made her body just the way you wanted. You've determined the natural talents she will possess and the uniqueness of her personality. Your word says that You know her inside and out. You know every bone in her body. You know exactly how she was made, bit by bit; how she was sculpted from nothing into something.

God, because You made Grace for a reason, You also decided when she would be born and how long she will live. You've planned the days of her life in advance; choosing the exact time of her birth and even her death. Your word says You saw Grace before she was born and scheduled each day of her life even before she took this first breath. Every day was recorded in Your book.

God, you also planned where Grace would be born and where she will live for Your purpose. Her race and nationality are no accident. You left no detail to chance. You are not surprised. In fact, you expected it. You have welcomed her into this world. You are her Father to love, care for and provide for her. Cover her with your love. Give her a supernatural awareness of your presence. Call her. Prepare her. Give her health and instill an ability to trust You in all things. Guide her. Fashion her with spiritual blessings. Just as the handmaiden Hannah lent her child for Your service, so I offer Grace to You, Lord. You are her salvation.

Treasured friend, Sarah, and my fun niece, Merideth, read the following scriptures & sang songs while Grace was being born & getting her first bath:

Psalm 139:14-15 Oh, yes, you shaped me first inside, then out; you formed me in my mother's womb. I thak you , High God--breathtaking! Body and soul, I am marvelously made! I worship in adoration--what a creation! You know me inside and out, you know every bone in my body; you know exactly how I was made, bit by bit, how I was sculpted from nothing into something. Like an open book, you watched me grow from conception to birth; all the stages of my life were spread out before you, the days of my life all prepard before I'd even lived one day.

Psalm 22:9-10 And to think, you were my midwife at my birth, setting me at my mother's breast! When I left the womb You cradled me; since the moment of birth you've been my God.

Psalm 71:6 I've hung on you from the day of my birth. You took me from the cradle; I'll never run out of praise.

Isaiah 49:1, 5 Listen far flung islands, pay attention, faraway people: God put me to work from the day I was born. The moment I entered the world He named me. He said to me, "You're me dear servant, Israel (Grace), through whom I'll shine."

Luke 1:41 You are blessed and the babe in your womb also blessed.

Matt 19:14 One day children were brought to Jesus in the hope that he would lay hands on them and pray over them. The disciples shooed them off. But Jesus intervened: "Let the children alone, don't prevent them from coming to me. God's kingdom is made up of people like these."

Eph 1:3-6 How blessed is God! And what a blessing He is! He's the Father of our Master, Jesus Christ, and takes us to the high places of blessing in Him. Long before He laid down earth's foundations, He had us in mind, had settled on us as the focus of His love, to be made whole and holy by His love. Long, long ago He decided to adopt us into His family through Jesus Christ. (What pleasure He took in planning this!) He wanted us to enter into the celebration of His lavish gift-giving by the hand of His beloved Son.

I Samual 1:28 I prayed for this child, and God gave me what I asked for. And now I have dedicated him (her) to God. She's dedicated to God for life." Then and there, they worshiped God.

I also found a note written by Tracy or Sarah that they sang "Jesus Loves Me" over Grace while she was being born and bathed. I'm finished piddling now. I think I'm driving home a new car today~ Wheee~~~~

Saturday, June 14, 2008

It's your day~

Happy Birthday, Gracie~ You are my treasure!
Click to play Happy Birthday Gracie
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Thursday, June 12, 2008

Manarola - Cinque Terre

What a pleasant surprise when an email arrived from a friend I met in Manarola, Italy. We exchanged email address back in May 2003 - that was...ummmm,5 years ago. We lost touch while I still lived in Germany, but he came across that little piece of paper & thought he'd say hi. How nice! So this morning after returning the hello, I've been dreaming a bit about Cinque Terre. Here's a peek into my daydreams~

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Better news for Dakota!

Received the following update regarding Dakota! Praise God!

The post-surgery MRI shows actually 95% of the tumor was removed, not just 80% as originally stated. Dakota is responding to ALL motor skill testing. There appears to be a mobility problem in the left arm, but he does have feeling in the arm so the doctor is hopeful therapy can help with the left arm immobility. Considering what the surgeons were telling them before the surgery the arm thing seems so minor to them at this point. Our God is a good God! Autumn again says to tell everyone THANK YOU from the bottom of her heart for the prayers.


Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Dakota update

I received this message last night from my friend regarding Dakota: HE SURVIVED SURGERY! They were only able to get 80% of the tumor. He is in recovery. This is all we know at this point. I just wanted to pass along what details I had. Thanks for much for all your prayers in this ongoing battle for this little guy's life. I'll pass on details as I get them.

Sunday, June 08, 2008

Big Week

Lately, I've had lots to say but Blogger's kept me at bay with some cookie problem. Cookie problems - what a problem to have, eh? But I finally resolved the problem at 3:30 AM with nothing else to do. No, I was just really motivated to resolve the issue & move on. Resolve & move on~

It's beeen a big week round here indeed! Summer camp started for the little Miss. She's a happy girl these days planting flowers, making strawberry jam and having a bike wash at school...oh, right - it's "summer camp." That makes a big difference, you know? This week, she actually told me "It's ok, Mom. I can go in by meself." That's big for us & I'm smiling!

My studies...well, we're pressing on for sure! I'm taking Augmentative & Alternative Communication as well as Assessment this semester. Enjoy both of them...the instructors are great & I'm learning lots despite the pace...despite being on campus 4 night per week. So much for building margins in my life. Much to my surprise I aced an exam that I was certain demonstrated my "ill prepareness." Hmmmm - guess I was more prepared than I thought. That feels nice~

But speaking of margins....check this out - a CLC sermon series on just that - building margins in our lives. It's so right where we live. Watch it live on Sundays or catch the most recent installments via video or audio message.

I witnessed an accident this week - right in front of me. A mini van turned into the path of an oncoming truck. Nasty & gnarly accident - just pray everyone was ok. The van was in the intersection, waiting to complete a left turn. The light was yellow...they proably thought the
truck was stopping given it would not make it through on green or even yellow light. Nope - that truck was bound to make the light. In a moment, everything changed. In a moment~ it really shook me up. I called 911 as soon as it happened & was calm, but afterward - really shaken up. I was on my way to a client's house for therapy & though I've been there dozens of times, I couldn't find it...I was so disoriented, my brain just not working right. You just never know when a moment might alter your life with magnanamous proportions. Time to slow down...take my time & build some margin in my life.

Sunday, June 01, 2008

Dakota update - surgery delayed

The head surgeon on the team had an emergency surgery that kept her up for over 36 hours and she refused to operate on Dakota until she can be rested. There is a team of 5 surgeons who will be operating and after the last scan they have said it will be a minimum of 12 hours on the operating table. It will probably be the first of the week. God is still able to completely remove this tumor and no surgery is needed and that is what we are believing for. Let's pray specifically for Dakota's breathing and mobility during the interim. He is having trouble catching his breath and his legs are giving out on him easily.

I'll keep you posted, my friend. Friendship is truly a wonderful blessing, but when friends share a common belief in our great God above it takes friendship to a whole new level.