Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Ice Skating Videos

I got a new point and shoot camera for those spur of the moment pictures when I don't have my big camera. Honestly, though, I bought it for the video capability. So you will all have to bear with me as I am a little video crazy right now! If you are just a casual reader of my blog you may just want to pass on this one. If you are family...you might like seeing Mya learning how to ice skate. The second video is clips of all the kids ice skating at Jason's party.

Jason is nine years old!!!!
Jason decided to have a family birthday party. He wanted to go ice skating. So we enjoyed a family dinner at Red Robin. Jason ate up all the attention. He ate every single bite of the ice cream without sharing any because it was HIS birthday. After dinner, we met up with Mamaw and Papa, all the aunts, uncles, and cousins for ice skating. The kids all had a blast. We then came home and shared ice cream cake and opened presents. Jason finished it off by spending the night with his cousin Nate.
Our family has embarked on quite a few adventures this past year. Starting with our
move to Colorado in April, we began an adventure with homeschooling. This has been quite a journey... I must say that now that we have reached the halfway mark I think we can make it! I am most impressed. I love the support from the teachers that help us make it through the tough moments. All three boys are going through a reading program called the Barton System. It is specifically for dyslexia. I am hopeful that there will be an improvement as we progress through the program.

I am still debating on whether all four kids will continue homeschooling or if we will return to school. I am all for keeping them home. But I need to really pray about their individual needs. Brittney seems to be adjusting well and making friends at co-op. Jason on the other hand is not really connecting with friends there so I am not sure what to do with him. He doesn't want to go to school but he misses having friends. I think once we get established in a church that he will be ok.

Our newest adventure began a little over a week ago. My sister and her three boys moved in with us. My sister is going through a divorce so they are staying with us in the transition period. It is a good thing that we both love chaos and thrive in it- there are 8 children here ages: 11,10,9,6,5,4,2, and 17months. Its quite loud and fun to say the least. Dana moving here was such a blessing to me- probably more than she realizes. My heart's desire and prayer has been to get more structure into my life and my kids lives. My goal was to start implementing a plan during Christmas break. Well, Dana is so much better in this area than I am. Her structure motivates me. So my house has been cleaner and more organized, meals have been made, everyone is settling into a routine, and I think, despite the extra children, my husband is happier.

Despite Jonathan's recent issues, all is well in our home. We are looking forward to 2009. First on our list is to find a church to connect to... we desperately need fellowship and a place to belong. Please pray along with us on this. Its a scary place to be- wounded and on the outside of the pack. It makes you very vulnerable to attacks.
Who knows what else is ahead? I am sure it will be quite an adventure.

Some days it is hard to believe all that Jonathan has been through. Some days it is hard to believe he is still alive. He is definately a miracle. He should not be here. But he is...and that means God has a purpose.

On days like the ones he has had the past few weeks I have struggle to understand what that purpose is. I know that so many lives have been touched because of Jonathan's life. He has reached into many hearts and brought healing by his unconditional love and blindness to others flaws. He has displayed a childlike faith that puts most of us to shame. Until recently, he has not even wrestled with "why me". He has just accepted this call on his life and joyfully proclaims- I have special needs because I have a brain tumor. See they cut my head open from ear to ear. You want to hear a song. And then he goes into a mini concert of worship songs for the whole grocery store to hear.

Most of the time- at least in the busy moments-I don't wrestle. But when I am caring for him after he has thrown up, or give him the maximum amount of headache medicine, or listen to him come unglued because he can't cope with anything, or watch as he struggles to hold something in his hands and they shake and objects fall then I can't help but wonder why. In all honesty, I wonder why God allowed him to live. There is a fear deep inside of me that if things were to go that way now it would be so much harder for him to understand. Thoughts I can't really dwell on.

I know that God allowed him to live for me, for his daddy, his brothers and sisters, for all of us who are touched by him. There is so much good. I know it. Today his pain is on my mind and the anxiety of the unknown weighs heavy on my heart. I know that I would be far to weak spiritually to endure the suffering this child has and not bitterly turn my back on God. I only have the emotional pain and I walk very often on the edge of desertion. The truth remains though- that there is no where else I could go, no one else to turn to but my Lord. So I am grateful that he remembers that I am but dust in desperate need of my Savior and the truth and hope that He holds.

So you are probably wondering what brought this all on. The past few weeks Jonathan has progessively gotten sicker. I am sure that it is probably nothing or a sinus infection or the lack of faithfulness to a gluten free diet. But as he has thrown up 3 times in the past 2 weeks in his sleep, has constant headaches, constant nausea and increased fatigue I have started to worry. I emailed the doctors in Denver yesterday and they agree that we need to scan as soon as possible to rule out anything tumor related. He is scheduled to be scanned tomorrow morning.
See- this it the cruelness of any cancer. It never goes away. Even after years of clean scans, you can wake up one morning and life completely changes again. Something simple could be nothing or could be everything. Its torture to always be suspended somewhere between living and dying.

Sorry for the depressing post. I promise to post more uplifting posts today. But I need you to all be praying for Jonathan and for us. We need healing in more than one area! Thanks for walking this path with us.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Trying to catch up... before Christmas and its thousand pictures!

Making Christmas cookies got a little physical this year!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Wow, I have been gone for a long time from this blog! I am sorry friends. Its been crazy around here and by the time I sit down to write I feel mentally depleted. Plus, I have been quite distracted by facebook and the opportunity it has given me to chat. My sister in law and I have had more conversations in the past couple of weeks than I think we have ever had.

So much has been going on out here in cold and snowy Colorado. I think my kids are feeling a little snow overload. I caught them saying something about wanting a " Tennessee Christmas!" I am not sure the longing they have for their friend back in Tennesee will ever go away but we are trying to soften the hurt just a little. We are slowly making friends and getting involved with others. The kids were busy today making presents to send to their cousins and friends in Tennessee. I am not sure if they will make it in time but we will try.

Brittney celebrated her 10th birthday on Dec. 11. I can't believe that it has already been 10 years since I first held in her my arms and looked down into her purple and blue bruised face. I was so ecstatic to hear her cry- now I am begging her to tone down the drama just slightly! Actually, I must say I am so proud of her and thankful for her. She is so mature in the things that matter but still catches me off guard when she acts like a "normal" kid her age. She is a blessing to me in so many ways. Now that she has gotten older, it is so much fun to have a constant shopping buddy.

We were not planning to celebrate her birthday until after the holiday rush died down a little. Feeling bad, I mentioned that maybe she might want to have a friend or two come home from co-op with us and spend the night since her birthday was on co-op day. Well, by the time we left co-op we had three girls come home with us and two others that joined later. So we threw a spontaneuos birthday party that I think Brittney really enjoyed. The girls were awake until almost 2 am!!!!! Thank goodness sleepovers are a rarity.

Brittney also auditioned for a play last week. Although she did not get offered a part, she did get a call back which she was so excited about. It was a really good learning experince for her. She is going to try out for a different play at the beginning of January. Jason and Josh also decided they too want to audtion... I am holding them off for now.

I will try to update on more of the December events soon... just wanted to drop a little post to say that I am still here... just really busy and really tired!

p.s. Please keep Jon in your prayers. He has had a few rough days with some vomiting and headache. This always happens to us right before its time to do his MRI again and its usually nothing but my mommy heart can't help but worry.