Saturday, May 31, 2008

One Semester of Spanish Love Song

My friend Emily has again sent me a video I just have to post!  Its very funny.  Check it out and see what you think.

Friday, May 30, 2008


Sam gets to come home at around 3pm some days and many times he gets here right before I put Zekey down for his nap.  Zekers has turned out to be a Daddy's boy so far and gets soooooo excited when Sam comes home from work.  He wants Sam to hold him indefinitely, so what ends up happening is Sam lays down with Zekey and they both take a nap.  I took some pictures with my phone and thought I'd share.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Skype...if you love us you will sign up! hehehehehe

So, my friend Michawn has once again enlightened me. (Hi Michawn!) She introduced me to Skype via her family's webpage.  I had been looking for a way to make video calls since we now have a webcam.  I just downloaded it, but I haven't made any calls yet.  I would LOVE it if my friends and family would sign up.  The catch is you at least need a microphone for your computer and if you want to video call you have to have a webcam, too. Other than that, as long as you are a skype member, skype to skype calls are free!  You can also make regular calls from your computer to mobile and land line phones for a cheaper rate than normal, apparently.  I'm going to put the link below and also make a link in my sidebar.  Check it out and let me know if you join so we can talk over the computer.  I really want to try this thing out...especially the video calls!

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Braden's Birthday Extravaganza!

Braden had a really great birthday. When he woke up, he crawled/bounced/wiggled into bed beside me and layed there for a bit until I fully woke up. (This is the normal routine by the way.) Then I sang happy birthday to him and we talked for a little bit until Zekers woke up and made it very clear that our presence was needed. For breakfast I made smiley face chocolate chip pancakes and I put a sparkler in his. He really liked that. Then the most important thing happened. He got to open up his first pair of skates, which he calls skaters. They have three wheels each and for the first stage there are two wheels on the back and one on the front. When he gets really good at it, we'll put the wheels in line like roller blades. Pretty neat skates.:) When he first tried to start skating, I was holding his hand and trying to help him balance. After a whole bunch of flopping around, he finally said, "Mom, I want to do it by myself." So, I let go and off he went just fine and dandy! He kind of shuffles around, but he's doing just great and I know it won't take him any time at all before he's all over the place!  Zekey was having fun, too.  He got this little truck for his birthday (we let him open it early about a week or two ago after getting permission from my mom:) and so he and Braden were both on wheels.

This year we did things a lot differently. Usually I ask him what theme he wants and give him a couple to choose from. This year he chose everything. First he said he wanted a Thomas-Dinosaur cake. Then he got to help pick out stickers for his scrapbook and help pick out the decorations for his cake. I decided that the easiest cake to make is a cookie cake and after over-cooking the first one, I had success the second time around. Most of the time when I make cakes, I really go all out and make everything from scratch and totally stress myself out. I'm telling on myself, I know, but this time, I bought ready made cookie dough, got decorator's icing in white and chocolate from Hobby Lobby, writing icing from Wal-Mart (which I will NOT use again because it was very runny as you can see from the pictures...yuck!), got a little dinosaur scene set from Michaels and used a Thomas train that was on Braden's cake last year! For the grass, I bought a little tip at Hobby Lobby that was specifically for making grass or hair. I totally rigged a piping bag from a ziploc bag, actually several cuz it kept popping out, to do it because I didn't want to buy a piping bag. I thought I could use my Pampered Chef icing decorator and that would be enough. Not so much... Even though I used to be a Pampered Chef consultant and I use and love a lot of their products, this is one that after repeated attempts to use it, I'm NOT loving it. I'd rather use a piping bag and tips. Much more user friendly! Okay, moving on.

We also kind of did everything late this year, too. Usually, I've got decorations, candles, presents, etc all bought and ready to go way in advance. We went to Target and let Braden pick out his present a couple of days before his birthday. That was a first, too. We looked at several things that he has pointed out or mentioned and it came down to a choice between Ratatouille the movie or the roller blade skates. Really it was no contest, he was all into the roller blade "skaters"! It was so funny because he just could not stop talking about his birthday skaters and was telling everyone we passed in the store about it. For the next couple of days he did the same thing to everyone he saw. (He's definitely NOT shy!) He also talked about his train/dinosaur cake, too. He was soooooo excited and asked everyday if it was his birthday yet. So funny...

On his birthday, the second successful cookie cake was made and then I piped all the icing into place and then Braden placed the dinosaurs and Thomas where he wanted them. After we finished, I gave him a paper plate and let him practice piping icing onto his "cake". He really had fun doing that and you can see his masterpiece below.:)

For dinner I asked him what he wanted and originally he said cereal. I was going to let him have that, but when Sam and I decided we wanted an all out breakfast for dinner, he wanted in on that instead! We had biscuits and gravy (Sam makes the gravy and he's so good at it...yummy!), hashed browns, fried eggs, lil' wieners and sausage patties. Mmmmmmmm...excuse my drooling.... Then Braden went outside to show Daddy how he can skate. We were all having a really good time together. Zekey really likes Braden's skates, too. He was trying to get a hold of them every chance he could get, much to Braden's chagrin! He'll be on some soon enough, I'm sure!

Then it was time for the cake. I put five candles on it, one to grow on, of course! I then decked it out with several sparklers. I'm a pyrotechnics expert in training:) We lit it all up and sang happy birthday as Braden tried to blow them all out. It was really fun. There was one sparkler that refused to give up and Braden was determined to see to it that it went out! We all then had some yummy cookie cake, including Zekers, who just started shoving it into his mouth squirrel style. Braden decided he wanted all the dinosaurs and Thomas to be on his piece. It got a little crowded.:) We really just had a great time and Braden really loved being the center of attention for the day. Zekers is up next on Sunday. I think it will be interesting. I'm also going to try and have a little party for both boys when we visit family in a little over a week. Get all the cousins together and have some icecream and cake and play til we all drop. Yay! Okay, as promised, here are pictures....

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Happy Birthday, Braden!!!

Our sweet Braden-boy-o is 4 today!  I can't believe he is 4.  When did that happen?  He is such a blessing to us!  He has a tender heart and he is well on his way to learning to be a true leader.  He is an excellent big brother and learning how to be a better one every day.  He is funny, curious, smart, handsome, fun to be around and an absolute joy to watch.  People seriously take to him immediately upon meeting him.  He knows no stranger.  They always tell us how polite and kind and attentive he is.  What an amazing little person God has given us to raise for him!  
Thank you, Lord, for our wonderful son, Braden.  Please give us the wisdom to raise him in your ways so that he will walk the path You have set before him.  May he be a child and eventually a man after your own heart.  Please give him an endless hunger to know you, Father.  May you use him mightily for your kingdom!  Thank you for choosing us to be his parents.  May we bless your heart by instilling in him everything that you are, capturing his precious heart and raising him with the vision of all that he can be in You.  In Jesus' precious, holy name,  Amen!!! 

Monday, May 26, 2008

Just a little bit of fun - old school style

12th Grade Reading Test for the State of (enter your state here:)

Passage of this Test Mandatory for Diploma




Saturday, May 24, 2008

Braden's baby sling

One day Braden was carrying around his ducky Shelly(yep, he named "her" after me:) and puppy Rusty and was trying to carry them inside the front of his shirt.  He was getting frustrated because they kept falling out so I made him a baby sling out of a tea towel.  Here are the results....

Friday, May 23, 2008

What a way to make it through labor!

WARNING:  Please be advised.  Before you take a look at this, you need to know that this video is of a lady in labor.  She is not undressed, but you can see her very pregnant belly fully as she is wearing a sports bra and a sarong.  It does not show her pushing out the baby, it is just her singing through her labor pains.  If you are a man, I would recommend NOT watching this if you have issues in this area.  (Men are very visual beings and don't need the added stimulus!)  Please keep yourself protected!  Thanks:)

My friend Emily emailed me the link to this youtube video.  I wanted to post this because I am in awe of how this lady is handling her labor.  Not to mention she has a truly amazingly beautiful voice.  As a screamer myself, it just gives me a renewed sense of hope that I can handle any future labors differently than I have in the past:) Okay, enjoy.

Also, if you are interested the song is Psalm 23 by Michael Olson off of his Long Arm of Love Album.  You can buy the song off of iTunes for $0.99.  :)

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Arena - the book by Karen Hancock....a rave review!

I just finished reading Arena by Karen Hancock.  What a superb book!  She is a Christian author who writes Christian Science Fiction/Fantasy books.  Arena is the first book she wrote.  She has also written four others in a series titled The Guardian King Series. (Also excellent books.)

Arena is truly an amazingly, well-written book.  It is thrilling, intriguing and addictive!  Seriously, both Sam and I can't stop thinking about it.  We both wish we could still be reading it.  The plot is well thought out and the characters extensively developed.  Her writing style is such that you really do feel like you are right there alongside the characters experiencing everything they are; very vivid.  Its almost tangible.  Here's the teaser on the back cover of the book:

“Hancock’s intense debut is an excellent…edgy contribution to the genre…”
~Publisher’s Weekly

A 2003 Christy Award Winner!

“The genuinely enthralling mix of adventure, romance, and vivid imagery fused with spiritual symbolism invites readers to lose themselves in Hancock’s imaginary world… engrossing and well-paced.
~Christianity Today

Plagued by fear and disillusionment, Callie Hayes volunteers for a psychology experiment that promises to turn her life around. Unnerved by the mounting evasiveness of the research workers, however, she soon changes her mind and asks to be released from the project. To her horror, the workers refuse, dropping her instead into a terrifying alien world amidst an ongoing battle between good and evil. With limited resources and only a few cryptic words to guide her, she embarks on a journey that will change her life forever. Will she decipher the plans the Benefactor has established for her escape, or will she succumb to the deception of the Arena?

“In evangelical fiction’s best science fiction of the year, Hancock works out a progression of faith by trial somewhat like Pilgrim’s Progress. But she departs from the conventions of allegory to draw her characters in depth, and the flora and fauna of her arid alien landscape are carefully thought through." ~Booklist Top Ten Christian Novels 2002

"A classic in the making for the modern era.” ~ Library Journal

She really has incorporated all areas of interest in her books.  There is romance, action, adventure, science fiction/fantasy, and a core Christianity base.  The thing that has continually kept my mind thinking over her books is the way she depicts spiritual warfare and power.  I don't know if I can do justice in explaining this thoroughly, but I will try.  Where for us in this world God gives us strength and power to overcome and live victoriously in our everyday life and also gives us the power to combat the devil and his little minions, in her books its much more tactile and corporeal.  Where we gird our loins with truth, put on the breastplate of righteousness, a helmet of salvation, shod our feet with the Preparation of the Gospel of Peace, take up the shield of faith and sword of the Spirit (Word of God)- Ephesians 6:14-17, in her book the characters have these things, but they are actual articles of clothing or actual weapons that work in conjunction with how little or great their faith and relationship to their Creator is.  Its just amazing.  It makes me think of how it might possibly be to be in the actual presence of God in the Throne Room in Heaven.  Kind of like a wistful longing for our real Home. :)  Its such an exciting prospect.  Don't get me wrong, when God wants His works and power to be manifest in a tangible, physical way, He absolutely can and will do it.  The Bible has plenty of examples of the lame walking, the blind seeing, the dead rising, people being physically healed of all manner of illness.  People are still recipients of God's miracles in this way today.  The thing is even though the spiritual battle that is being waged between Good and evil is indeed evidenced in the physical realm, if you will, the root of it all is in the spiritual realm.  It all comes down to do you submit to God or don't you?  Do you live your life according to His will or your own?  Do you have a personal heart transforming relationship with the Savior, Jesus the Christ or do you have a head knowledge of Him and think that's enough?   The state of your spiritual journey with or without God, the renewal of your spirit, heart and mind via His strength and power, love and goodness or the lack of it all starts on the inside and presents itself in what you say, think and in your actions (outward verification).  The best evidence of a changed life is a changed life as our friend and pastor Ebb is fond of saying.  So back to what I was saying about the spiritual war being very physical in Karen Hancock's books....hopefully, you'll read them and then let me know what YOU think.  I would love to hear all about it.  If I get enough of a response, I'll make a response post about it with the entire collection of responses I get.  I have put the link in the Excellent Books and Movies I Recommend and Links to Them column to the right of my blog page. I will make the link available here, too.:)  I've also put links to the other books Karen Hancock has written.  There are three ways to order them:  Edenstar Books and Games, Christian Book Distributors or .  If you click on the link to her website for Arena or any of her other books, there is a place you can click to order from one of these places.  I got Arena as well as the last book in The Guardian King Series off of .  Though I've read the first three books in the series, we borrowed them from family and so intend to order them as well.  (Trust me all of them will be read and re-read!)

By the way, she is working on her latest book and according to her, she thinks she might be almost finished.  I encourage you to read her blog:  Writing From the Edge. She goes into her writing processes and its really very interesting.  Also, here is the link to her bio where you can find out more about how she came to be a Christian and also how she got started on writing books.  Very cool stuff.

Okay, that's all for now.  I would really love to hear what you think about her stuff.  Let me know.:)

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Update on the Marriage....What is it really all about? post

I've added three more messages to the previous Marriage...What is it really all about? post under the Bob Coy section.  You can click here to go straight to that post.

Epilogue to the boy's birth stories: Taking another step of faith

This is really the epilogue as it were to both of our boys' birth stories.  Sam and I have been given a revelation about something and we would like to share it.  We have been growing a lot because God has been showing us where we have been withholding areas of our lives/hearts from Him.  As we have given those areas up to Him, we have been profusely blessed!  Well, we have been dealing with some family issues concerning rebellion, how to respond to unGodly behavior and giving up control completely to God. 
 Well, we were handling the first two in ways we are constantly seeking God on, but the third we were not.  We have two children now and if you have read their birth stories, you know that things were not a piece of cake.  We also live in a very small space right now and it would be "inconvenient" to add another person to the mix at this time.  Yep, we hadn't given control of having kiddos up to our King.  What a travesty on our part!   Children are blessings, not burdens and God had to work on our hearts for a bit for us to have the revelation to just let Him have control of how He is going to bless us.  
He had already worked on my heart after Zekey was a few months old by just letting me watch my children interact with each other.  I knew then that I was open to having more children.  I thought it would be great to add more to the mix.  I was also hearing a lot of sermons on large families and kept having encounters with this subject over and over again in different ways.  Then, I read my friend Michawn's blog and she put it very nicely, "God will decide when He is done with my uterus."  That is so powerful and what faith that takes!  Next, we met a family at the church God led us to here in Meridian, MS that believes the same way.  The mother, Emily, gave me a magazine Above Rubies ( to read and there was a story in it that just really spoke to me.  I will put it at the end of this post for you to read.  
Anyway, after I read that, I went to Sam and asked him to read it and tell me what he thought.  I told him what was going on in my heart and how I felt like we were keeping God from having complete and free control over this part of our lives.  He didn't really say a whole lot, but I could tell he didn't like what he was hearing.;)  (Not in a bad way, just that his heart wasn't aimed in that direction and he wasn't ready for a switch.)  We usually don't when God is causing us to grow. I myself was scared and anxious at first and then there was just total peace once I confessed my fear to God and gave it up to Him.  

The next morning Sam texted me and said, "I don't think I like this."  I asked him what he didn't like.  He said he thought God was changing his heart about having more kids.  After that, it was like a heavy weight lifted off our shoulders.  We didn't even realize it was there, but it made a huge impact.  We weren't meant to carry that burden.  God is.  Isn't that so great?!  God will decide if and when to open my womb again and we are trusting Him to provide for anyone and any circumstance that comes along. Even more than that, though, we are looking forward and hoping that God will give us more children!  We can't wait!  

Another great book to read on this subject is Be Fruitful and Multiply by Nancy Campbell.  Talk about a revelation!

Here's the story that just touched my heart and really spoke to me.

In the Arms of Grace by Lisl Fair (Above Rubies - February 2008- Issue 73)
There was a time during my journey as a mother that I  did not want any more children.  My dreams and plans did not include more sleepless nights and runny noses.  Two were enough for me.  During this time, I went on a trip to Italy with my mother to do research on a novel that  I was planning to write.  I left Zoe-Mari (3) and Victor (18 months) with my husband, Robert, and a domestic helper.  I decided, before my trip, to take the Pill to regulate my cycle so the trip would not be complicated by "inconveniences".
I had not been using the Pill for years because long term use makes me ill.  We had been using other forms of contraception to make sure that no surprise would interrupt my "dreams".  The trip was a wonderful time of attempting adventures and bonding with my mother.  I took different types of medication during the trips for a variety of reasons - sleeplessness, stomach pains and nausea.
During one of these sick spells in a bathroom of a guesthouse in Rome, I had the fleeting thought, "What if I am pregnant."  I immediately pushed the thought away and determined to enjoy the trip.  It had cost so much to get here and my family were making sacrifices to let me do it.  Little did I know what the real cost of the trip would be.
We were gone for seventeen days.  I coped without my children by not allowing myself to think too much.  It was wonderful to see them at the airport and to finally be back home.  I immediately left the Pill so my body could get back into its own hormonal rhythm again.
Four days after returning, I started having heavy cramps such as never before.  It was Thursday and a visit to the toilet told me the awful truth.  I held a precious baby covered in blood in my hand.  The placenta was small, but perfectly formed, hiding a little child from my sight.  Time stood still as I realized that I had been pregnant before the trip - before I took all the medicine to make the trip convenient. 
I called Robert and he immediately said, "God, forgive me for not wanting more children!"  Together, we put out tiny baby in a pretty little box.  We clung to each other that night, each with their own feelings of guilt and shame.
The next morning we took the little box, went to Robert's mother's grave in the cemetery, dug a little hole on top of her grave, and committed our child to God.  The arum lilies were not the only thing I left on that combined grave - I left part of myself there too.
It literally took years for me to get over what happened that Thursday night.  I think, on some level, I will always grieve what could have been.  I've learned many things from our baby's death:
I've learned that it is easier to say good-bye if you've had a chance to say "Hello."  that is why I named him Simon.  I allowed myself to acknowledge him, love him and let him go into God's hands.  I've learned that God is the author of life and death.  If God wanted Simon to live, he would have lived in spite of my mistakes.  I've learned that even in the shadow of death, God's grace is present.
I've learned that children are precious gifts from God.  They are not an interruption of my life, but part of the fulfillment of my destiny.
I've learned that wholeness comes slowly but certainly.  I went through a season where my other children became an idol to me.  I idolized them because I couldn't forgive myself for what happened.  When I realized that Jesus did not judge or condemn me for Simon's death, I was able to forgive myself and Jesus took his rightful place in my heart again.
I've learned that Simon was like a seed, a little person who gave his life to turn his father and mother's hearts towards their children.
And now?  I still have dreams.  I still want to write that novel, someday.  But now I know that my highest form of worship is to love and serve my husband and my children.  That is a pleasing sacrifice to God, a sacrifice I give willingly and happily, knowing that I , my children and my dreams are safe in the arms of grace.
If you are interested in stories like this one, you can go to and request a magazine. 

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Ezekiel's Birth Story - The Finale!!!

Well, the ice packs worked! It only took about 36 hours for the swelling to go away completely. That was a change from a week and a half! At first I wasn’t producing enough due to all the swelling, so I did supplement a little bit until Ezekiel’s jaundice went away. However, I always breast fed first and then only supplemented a little bit. I did have to gradually increase the formula, but not to an extent that I couldn’t make up the difference later. When he was out of the woods with the jaundice, I had to breast feed him about every hour and a half to meet his needs. After a few days of that, though I wanted to try the herbs. I had to get my first bottles at a health food store in town and the price difference between the two is enough to wait for the online order! I will put up a link for this as well. The herbs worked right away. I know that for some they don’t do anything, but they did work for me. I was excited because my milk supply completely met Ezekiel’s needs after that. There were still times where he would breast feed every hour and a half, but usually it was only when he was in a growth spurt. Oh yeah, he finally did go poo a week later!:) During the first two weeks of Zekey’s life, we went to see Patty many times. She was an invaluable source of support and information. Thank you, Patty!

It took about three full weeks for my pelvis to be able to support my weight, but it did finally happen. Not a whole lot else happened that was not within the normal realm of my life after that. I was able to solely breastfeed until we started Zekey on solid foods at four months. Like Braden, he weaned himself. He just simply became disinterested in staying on the boob for any length of time, so at 6 mos, right before Christmas, he was completely weaned. Truth be told, I was just fine with that. 

Truly the amount of growth and trust that came out of being blessed with this little boy is just amazing!  I can't imagine having been sane after all that I went through with this pregnancy if it had been my first.  Don't you love how God orders events in our lives and totally gives us the preparation and equips us with exactly what we need when need it?  What an awesome God we have!!!  I love that God stretched Sam and I so much.  We are stronger and more united than ever!  To top it all off He has blessed us with two wonderful little souls to take care of for Him.  Wow!  That’s Zeker’s birth story. I hope you enjoyed the saga....;)  Oh yeah, by the way he came out weighing 8 lbs 14.5 oz (a whole pound more than we thought!) and 19 1/2" long.  He was also super bruised from coming out so fast!

Here is a picture montage of Zekers:

m m