Wednesday, March 30, 2011

"Oh the Cleverness of Me!" *

Patrick asked me last week when I was going to put up Natalie's name in the nursery, decorate with all of the fun wall decals that I bought, and put up the curtains.  I told him that I wasn't going to do ANYTHING in the nursery (other than finish the painting) until all of the junk was out.

This junk includes: 1 antique hair drying chair, 1 coffee table, and 2 rather heavy televisions.  These are things that I cannot lift/carry, and thus they are his problem and not mine.  I've realized, though, that we both live very busy lives.  He can't carry the stuff down three flights of steps alone, and I can't help him (it was hard enough assisting him when I wasn't 27 weeks pregnant!).  Between the two of us, we have things going on every weekend from now until the baby comes . . . so I decided to help him out.

Craigslist is awesome.  I posted one free television and got rid of two.  People will be coming this week to carry them away . . . so not only did I manage to find good homes for them, I also did it in a way that WE don't have to do anything!  No trips to the dump or the Goodwill, no trying to cram it in and out of our little cars, no hassle, no worries, no problems!

I've noticed that the little things are those which Patrick appreciates most: when I pay a random bill, when I take care of phone calls that need to be made, etc.  I'm very blessed that he usually takes care of the bills and makes arrangements for various things.  When I am able to help him out, though, it makes both of us feel good.

My other "big" accomplishment for the week was calling Comcast (6 times) and reestablishing our wi-fi (old roommates forgetting the password=Erin talking to 5 different guys and wading through long minutes of phone menu options).   Patrick was excited A. because he didn't have to deal with Comcast over the phone and B. because he can now watch Netflix through our Wii.  I think he's more excited about B.

*so saith Peter Pan

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Coffee and the Word

It's funny how the need for coffee hits me at the strangest times.  Since I'm pregnant, I have been trying to limit my caffeine.  If I wake up and I don't need coffee, then I hold off until later in the day.  Today was one such morning.  As of right now, though, I am feeling the need fill my tank.  While this is fine for my coffee habit, I do not want my Bible reading to be the same way.

When I'm not pregnant, no morning is complete without coffee.  I've weaned myself off of the two-three cups every day system that I had before, but I must confess something.  The mornings that Patrick makes coffee are the best.  Waking up to a fresh, hot pot that I did not lift a finger to make just turns even the gloomiest morning into something cheerful for me.

This post is my decision and pact to read my Bible every morning before doing anything else.  If waking up to fresh coffee makes me happy, how much more will beginning my day with the Food of Life?  

Monday, March 28, 2011

Pictures, Conversation, and Music

Despite the return of chilly weather and the absence of warm breezes and sunny skies, I have been decidedly thankful and filled with joy this past weekend.  First, we did a 3D/4D ultrasound and got to see our beautiful daughter, then Patrick had a fun music gig at the public library.  We even had an interesting conversation in the middle.


My daughter is cute.  Really cute.  Somehow seeing her face changed everything for me.  Yes, I was completely excited about her before, but now I have a face to associate with her.  Instead of just talking to the faceless, wiggling girl in my womb, I can now picture her as I speak.  When I feel her kick, I know exactly how she looks.  Even her unpleasant placement of her feet in my ribcage is now just a little bit more acceptable because I've seen them there (yes, we even were shown a her wiggling feet moving between my back and my ribcage . . . ).  Truly, this was one of the most amazing experiences of my life.

Conversations: Mars and Venus?

On the way from my parents' home (after the ultrasound) to pick up Patrick's guitar at our home, we had an interesting discussion in the car.

I pointed out the trees on the side of the highway: red buds swelling with life, about to burst open at any time.  A week ago the trees all looked dead, but they were now filled with the promise of beauty and life to come.  I mentioned to Patrick that it almost made me cry because it showed me just what an amazing God we serve.

He grunted and said, "Great."

This annoyed me just little because I wanted him to share in my wonder and awe.  I began talking about spring and its similarities to the Christian life: winter is a time of death (or apparent death) and spring is the bringing about of new life.  Every flower that opens declares God's glory because only He can open it; every life growing in every womb cries out the wonder of God because only He can perfectly knit it together.

He understood, but his sense of awe comes from what God allows man to do: the music of Bach and Mozart, the contour of a beautiful building.  To him, these are the most awe-inspiring works of God.

We are both different: we each see and praise God for His amazing creation, but we view said creation in different ways.  While I may feel that nothing speaks of the wonder and creativity and splendor of God like the beauty of His natural creation, this emotion in no way decreases the glory of His workings through the hands of men.  As long as one is proclaiming His glory, I guess it really doesn't matter what part of His workings awe one the most!


This gig was by far the most enjoyable and entertaining of any Patrick's that I've ever attended.  The group played for a bunch of 3-8 year old children, and they also talked about rhythm, instruments, and music.  It made me realize just how much fun having a young child will be: these kids were up dancing, singing along, and just plain having fun listening to some good, clean music.  One little girl in pink cowgirl boots just danced and swayed the entire time while her little friend threw his stuffed dog up in air and did tricks to catch it while he danced.

When the guys didn't know the words to the "Scooby Doo" song (a request), one boy of about 4-5 got up and sang it from beginning to end complete with dance moves and a few sound effects.  During "Old MacDonald," animal noises and shrieks of laughter filled the room.

All in all, it just made me think: Patrick is going to make a great dad, and we are going to have a lot of fun with our kids (especially if they get his dance moves!).

Thursday, March 24, 2011

. . . With All Your Mind . . .

Tomorrow marks the start of a new women's Bible study. It's kind of neat--I'll be joining my mom and several other women who were a huge support to me throughout my childhood and teenage years . . . to be there as an adult (not as my mom's tag-a-long or a babysitter for all the kids) will be a new experience for me. However, I am most excited about the book which we will be studying: Loving God With All Your Mind.

Although I did this book with a college and career Bible study a few years ago, this seems like the perfect time in my life to pull it out again. With all of the emotions that are swirling inside me right now with everything that is happening, I need a good reminder about how to keep things in perspective, how to deal with my emotions, and how not to let them control me.

I tend to be a very emotion-driven person at times. When things get difficult, it often seems impossible for me to separate my emotions from my reactions and the way that I treat people. One thing wrong leads to the seeing of everything else in a more negative light. Being pregnant doesn't help me to balance my emotions either.

During a breakfast with a very dear friend recently, I confided that EVERYONE is on my nerves. Well, not everyone, but I have noticed that my fuse is much shorter these days. This is something about which I am praying--I hate living in that way. Yes, some days are much better than others, but I clearly see that I am being too much ruled by my emotions.

Loving God With All Your Mind helped me greatly through the stresses of my first few years in college, and I have pulled it out several times since that Bible study. To once again go through it in depth with the added accountability of godly women is something for which I am most thankful. This isn't about me becoming a nicer pregnant lady--it's about me honoring God with all that I say, do, and think.

On a really, really happy note . . . my Nook is in Maryland and is on its way here!!!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011


What do Pippi and Natalie have in common? Both get very active and want to play with me just as I'm about to go to bed every night. Perhaps they can amuse themselves together later on, but for now it's just funny how they are both on time schedules opposite of my own.


I awoke to the sun rising, the birds singing, and a fresh pot of hot coffee. What a beautiful way to begin. Mornings like this are a blessing since they have not happened often since the cold weather came in months ago. The beauty of spring is arriving, and with it comes hope, joy, and the promise of life.

It seems to me that one cannot help but reflect on the beauty and glory of God on a day such as this. Rejoice, and praise your Maker. Delight in His wondrous ways. Sing out, and glorify your Redeemer. Honor and bless His holy name.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Days, Pictures, Nooks, and Praise

The count is finally down to under 100 days! In 99 days, I will reach my estimated due date. When we were engaged, everything got more exciting and real after we reached the "100 day" mark. Right now, it's no different.

On Saturday, we will go and have a 3D/4D ultrasound done. While I am very excited about it, I think that it is Patrick who really, really, really can't wait. For the past several weeks, he has asked me continuously, "Have you set it up yet?" Since the 3D/4D ultrasounds give the best, clearest head shots after 26 weeks, I have had to tell him to be patient. By the time we go, I will be almost 27 weeks pregnant.

Although it seems as if there is still a long way to go, the days steadily keep going down, Natalie is becoming increasingly more active, and the ultrasound this weekend will show us almost exactly what our little girl will look like when she arrives.

I ordered a clock for the nursery with a $10 coupon for, and it should be arriving on Tuesday. It is sooo cute! If only we could get rid of the two televisions and the hideous hair drying chair that now occupy what is soon to be Natalie's room, I could get everything in order (hint, hint, Patrick).

More exciting than a clock is the fact that my Nook is scheduled to be delivered on Thursday. Yes, it is taking a lot longer than I originally thought when I ordered (had I gone with the Kindle it would have taken two days instead of 7 to ship!), but still. I have an ever expanding library of free books awaiting its arrival. Cookbooks, inspirational fiction, pop-fiction (Pride and Prejudice and Zombies for free?! I've wanted to see what it was all about since Dr. Wilkotz's class!), Star Wars (Patrick is currently dying of embarrassment), classic fiction, fairy-tales, and more call my name as they wait to be downloaded on my new favorite thing. To top it off, I have the ESV Bible and a prayer book by Matthew Henry that I found for free as well!

Since ordering the Nook, I have been like a little kid waiting for Christmas. I honestly haven't been this excited about a "thing" in a LONG time! When I graduated from college, I received some money . . . and I talked Patrick into letting me spend said graduation money on something that I really wanted (instead of on groceries or something equally . . . not fun). Because, I argued, I would only be graduating from college once and since the money was a gift and something extra, I should be able to buy something to commemorate that time Besides. I'm going to be nursing at all hours of the day and night soon--my time will be much better spent reading good books than sitting in front of the television! I really, really, REALLY can't wait. Hurry up, Thursday!

I have a feeling that God is up to something huge right now, but I don't want to write about it until I know for certain. If things continue as they seem, then God has once again provided us with something that we do not deserve and something more amazing than I ever could have imagined. Even if He chooses not to bestow this gift, He has still given me more than I could have ever asked or thought. What an amazing God I serve. Yes, He gives and takes away . . . but I really think that, to His people, He just gives. It all depends on your mindset.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Disjointed Continuity: Such is Life

I had a health scare on Friday when I woke up with pains all across my baby belly. Of course, Natalie had picked the past week to "tone down" her movements, so the combination of painful stomach muscles and the lack of kicking in my gut had me panicked. The doctor said to take it easy since there was nothing that could be done if anything was, in fact, wrong (23 weeks is too early), and I did. Saturday saw the pain on half my belly gone, and then came Sunday.

My baby does NOT generally move during the day. She likes to wait until I am good and tired and just about asleep. Sundays, however, are different. For some reason, she delights in hearing the voice of Dr. Nick Ganas as he preaches and she revels in distracting me as she tries to display her immense leg strength. I must confess that it often takes me by surprise: nothing, nothing, nothing, BOOM! If you see me laughing in church, it is because my daughter is trying to keep me from paying attention. Of course, Patrick sees me half jump in surprise and half giggle to myself, and then HE wants in on the action. "Is she MOVING?!?" he asks in an audible whisper just before reaching over to start poking my stomach in an effort to provoke his child to wrath. I have a sneaking suspicion that we (and when I say "we," I mean HE) are distracting everyone sitting behind us . . . and that would be the entire church since we sit in the very front.

Saturday saw us running up to Christiana Mall in Delaware to register at the mega Target store. I had a coupon for a free $20 gift certificate with the opening of a new registry, but it had expired on February 17. Being my mother's daughter, I decided to try and use it anyway. I got the impression that Patrick was embarrassed that I would even ASK the cashier if she would honor the coupon . . . guess who is now in possession of a $20 gift certificate to Target? He was just a little bummed when I refused to let him use it to buy some clothes that he found on the clearance rack, but hey--I did all the work. That free money is for the baby . . . or me since right now the baby and I are one. ;-)

Today marks the last day of peace in my life. Not forever, but quite literally for the rest of the week. The home restoration guys are coming bright and early tomorrow morning to, *gulp*, set up scaffolding in my dining room, pull out and replace the wet and ruined drywall, and to paint the water damaged ceilings of nearly my entire home. It's not their fault, but I can't help but be irritated that my home will be invaded for most of the week by men doing a job that they should not have to do! Yes, it's true. This is the second time they are coming in less than a year, and the damage is much worse this time than last. If only the condo association had fixed the roof properly the first three times . . .