So it’s been a really long time since updating which just means we have been so super busy! So much has happened since my last update, so there’s lots to fill you in on. WARNING: Be prepared to read a LONG list of God’s awesome blessings in our life over the last few weeks…it might take a while!
First off, we are all settled into our new two bedroom apartment! It is still on campus, just right down the hill, but it is reserved just for students that have 1-2 kids (which is why we lived in the one bedroom before). It looks great: we’ve managed to find a nice organized space for all of our stuff, curtain rods and picture frames have (almost completely) been hung. I was so proud of Colby because he even managed to wire and mount a ceiling fan in our living room which is AWESOME since there were no overhead lights when we moved in (it’ll also be great for the 2-5 days of “real summer” that we experience here in the Bay area!). We only had a couple casualties from the move (which entailed about four flights of stairs!!!): two really cheap $30 bookshelves from Target. So after one of our many appointments in the East Bay (which is where all our doctors are… we live in the “North Bay” so it’s about a 25 mile drive to Berkeley/Oakland) we decided to go to Ikea which is nearby to replace the broken bookshelves and boy did we ever hit the JACKPOT!!!! Of course, I had to start in the “as is” section (after a super cheap cinnamon roll, that is) on my endless quest for the best bargains ever. First, we spotted the rocking chair (with ottoman!) that we really wanted for the nursery – a floor display for 50% off! Gotta get that. Next we spotted the bookshelf we had actually come to buy for 40% off for a small chip in the back – check! Next we spotted a really nice (real!) wood dresser that would work perfect with a changing pad on top for the nursery: 50% off! I was getting so excited… we swung by to pick up the last bookshelf and then came to the realization of a potentially major problema. Our totally awesome friends let us borrow their car with better a/c since the one in our car doesn’t work so well – so what was the problem? It was a Ford Focus…with a big carseat in the back! We couldn’t let these bargains get away, so we HAD to make it work! Afterwards, I told Colby we were ready to join the circus! We literally turned off the radio and I (again, literally) prayed the entire way home that we and our treasures would make it home in one piece while Colby drove about 30 mph on the freeway! And, of course, we made it safely and Colby assembled all the “as is” furniture perfectly – even with no instructions! Next great find: while moving we randomly found a Wal-Mart gift card that had somehow been misplaced since our wedding (September 2007!) that we put towards the crib/mattress purchase! All in all, we got all the nursery furniture for just a little more than we expected to pay for just the dresser. I am constantly amazed that God really does desire to give good gifts to His children just because, even when they are silly things – He cares so intimately for us! As soon as the crib is set up with the bedding/decor, I’l post some pics!
A little background on the next huge blessing that came our way… When Colby and I decided to move to SF, we knew we’d only be bringing one car, but sadly, Colby’s car died the January before we moved out last July. So we have been struggling along as a one car family for almost 2 years! It’s been a rough road and really annoying for Colby to be stuck at home with no options while I’m 45 minutes away working a 12 hour shift! I have to admit being a tiny bit nervous at the thought of him being home with Judah when I go back to work with no car for emergencies, but we were going with the flow, trusting God “had our back”. A dear friend of ours at Seminary recently got a new car and through a maze of different circumstances really just needed to get rid of the old one that was turning out to be more of a burden that anything else. It’s an older car and Colby let her know that we might be interested in buying it for errand running/preventing his insanity/emergency use. Her response: no need for $$- here’s the keys! It needs a tiny bit of work and the title to be switched over to our name but we were floored by such incredible Divine provision when we hadn’t really even been looking!
Next on the blessing report: baby showers! I had my first baby shower this past Saturday and it was so much fun! A sweet friend from church that is one of the volunteers in the Children’s ministry hosted us in her home with some of the most delicious homemade brunch goodies, TO DIE FOR homemade red velvet cupcakes, the most adorable decorations and a good crowd of children’s ministry volunteers as guests. I received some beautiful gifts and felt so loved and comforted knowing that these folks are my family out here while I’m so far away from Georgia! I’ll be heading to shower #2 tonight which my work buddies are throwing for Lizzy (another pregnant coworker) and me! It sounds like it is going to be another great time with pampering for mommies and on-the-way babies!
Next up: the Grande Finale of great news! We’ve been to two specialist appointments since Friday that I actually have good reports about both! Friday was the Perinatalogist for a follow up ultrasound about Judah’s growth and arm. The good news is he is growing right on schedule and is about 2 lbs. 15 oz.! All the rest of his limbs, head, abdomen and amniotic fluid are measuring dead on: we could not be more grateful for no more horrible surprises! His hands remain clubbed and it appears as though his right humerus is still too small and not really growing. I’m not really sure what the long term implications of this are, but I have been referred to a Pediatrician that can be the liason to help me get information/appropriate referrals about treatment options after birth. We will be heading back for another ultrasound in about a month. Today, we had a follow up echocardiogram. Everything was looking pretty good, his right atrium even appeared to be a bit smaller than in previous echos! Of course, the usual answer of “we won’t know for sure until he’s born” was the final answer but the Cardiologist did not seem so sure of the Partial Anomalous Pulmonary Vein as he did at the last visit. This means that there is the possibility he may not have to have heart surgery at all! He is satisfied that Judah is doing well enough for now and that he will be stable (from a cardiac perspective) at birth that he does not need to see him for another echo until he is born! It felt a little weird to just walk out of the echo procedure room to the elevators instead of back into the office area to make another follow up appointment – but it was definitely a good weird! Words cannot express the relief and almost disbelief of two specialist appointments in a row without any new and horrifying blows. We are so thankful.
I am still feeling well with ankles, shoe size and rings intact, but I can also tell that in about 8-10 weeks, this little man is going to be making his entrance. The days at work seem relentlessly busy and I am so tired after 12 1/2 hours plus a 30-45 minute commute both ways. I am praying for God to give me the strength to hold on until the bitter end so that I have as many days as possible with my little man at home on maternity leave… I have my eyes on the prize of December 18th as my last day of work!
Although it sounds a bit old fashioned or granny or something – the words of an old song have been popping up in my mind constantly over the last few weeks: His eye is on the sparrow and I know He watches me! This is based on the verses from Matthew chapter 10, verses 29 and 31: “Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from the will of your Father… So don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.” I am realizing more and more that He not only cares about us as a whole being, but he cares about all the teeny, tiny “sparrows” in our hearts and lives and not one of them falls to the ground without Him knowing and being right there to comfort us. This means that he really does care about the clearance rocking chair, the homemade cream cheese frosting, the love of an expectant and fearful mother and father for their son and the joy that good news brings… not because God is really interested in Ikea or cupcakes, but because He is so intimately concerned for us, His children! Once again, I am brought to the cross where the price was paid for me to have a personal relationship with the Father, Son and Spirit that bring the comfort, joy, love and perfect gifts that could only come from the Father of Lights who never changes!
James 1:17 “Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.”