In Da Tub

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Oh, hi! It's me! I'm in da tub.

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I made my own bubble bath with my little bumbum.

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Then, we uhhhhh... sorta had to evacuate the tub really fast.

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I'd rather not talk about dat.

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So I had two baths this afternoon and then I was finally a little fresh cakes.

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After that I ordered some milkies...

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... and then took a series of cat naps.

When I saw Mommy start to doze off out of the corner of my eye I knew it was time to start fussing. No sleep for Mommy today!

Thanks for praying for my boogies to go away! I had a nice evening with Miss Paula while Mommy and Daddy went to a wedding! She helped me drink all my milkies even though it’s hard to drink anything with a buncha boogies clogging up my little nosey!

And as for you, brothers and sisters, never tire of doing what is good.
(2 Thessalonians 3:13 NIV)

Fussy

{For some reason this didn’t post last night as I had intended!!}

On top of being miserable from her shots, Nora has a very stuffy nose. Not sure of it’s a result of the vaccinations or if she has a cold. I’m inclined to believe it’s the latter, as the big kids are a little sniffly. She’s not eating much and has been a cantankerous little thing for much of the day. We had a few moments of contentment, however.

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I had been reluctant to put her in the bath tub because of her foul mood. There has been the rare occasion when we’d fill the big tub all the way up, get the oxygen tanks all situated, etc. and she wants nothing to do with bathies. This seemed it would be one of those instances, if I had to guess. Apparently I was WRONG!!!

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Crazy cute and sweet!!!!

Please pray that Nora’s tiny stuffy little nose will be back to normal soon and that she’s not too terribly uncomfortable! Thank you so much!!

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Post bathies cuddling!

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If I say, ‘I will forget my complaint,
I will change my expression, and smile,’
(Job 9:27 NIV)

Goodnight!

As a Mother Comforts Her Child

Everything was all fun and nice this morning.

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Then it was time for Nora’s appointment with the pediatrician… With SHOTS. The appointment went very well up until the last part when the needles showed up. Nora was just going about life as usual when suddenly she got jabbed in the legs with two very painful needles. They all but took her breath away. I scooped her up immediately afterward, swaddled her and held her tight as the tears streamed down both of our faces. I HATE seeing her in any pain. Of course I would spare her from it, but these shots are for her benefit. They will protect her from getting sick. I kissed her cheeks and stroked her little head over and over again, wishing I could somehow explain this pain to her. She doesn’t understand, as no baby possibly could. Even as she gets older it will still be hard for her to comprehend. How could I, as her Mommy just STAND THERE and let her get hurt like that, she might wonder!

The rest of the day has been rough. Nora wasn’t even in the mood for a warm bathies. I spent a good part of the afternoon holding her tightly in my arms and whispering sweet things in her ears.

In an eerily similar way, I’ve responded to pain and suffering in my life much like Nora to her shots.

“How could God allow this to happen,” I’ve been known to scream out from time to time, “How could He just ‘stand there’ and let (fill in the blank) happen? Doesn’t He care? What did I do to deserve this?”

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I demand answers to these questions in my immature fits of rage and sadness. God certainly sympathizes, but doesn’t expect me to get it. There is no way I could possibly grasp an understanding of God’s plan, the Big Picture. Perhaps there was plenty I’ve done to deserve the pain and suffering, but God doesn’t work like that. He is a caring and compassionate God that already suffered and died FOR US. In my most recent moment of despair back in January, God picked me up off of the floor after my excruciating “shot”. He swaddled me in His arms, held me tightly and whispered sweet things in my ears, “I’m so sorry you have to feel this, my sweet child. I know it hurts you terribly. I would do anything to protect you from this, but this pain is for your benefit. It is protecting you from the distractions of this world. I want you to rely on me for comfort. I want you to trust me that something beautiful is in store for you. This pain won’t last forever. Someday you’ll be free of any pain or suffering altogether. You will finally understand why. But in the mean time I’ve given you the gift of time to help you heal and to ease your suffering. Don’t give up on Me!”

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Wallpaper border at the pediatrician's office!

Like Nora, I give a little contented sigh of relief. I am comforted and loved as my head rests upon His shoulder. I trust You, Lord God!

The Lord  is good,
a refuge in times of trouble.
He cares for those who trust in him.
(Nahum 1:7 NIV)

As a mother comforts her child,
so will I comfort you.
(Isaiah 66:13 NIV)

Part 2

I really need to be more disciplined about writing my posts at a reasonable hour. I wanted to include so much more to Love Letters From God, but I kept dozing off. Actually, it was Nora that had some things to say:

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Oh, hi! It's me, Nora!

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Here's me getting lots of love in the morning from my Daddy before he goes to work.

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He misses me while he's at work.

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Daddy thinks I'm just as cute as a button!

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Yeah, I guess I am kind of cute!

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I got myself tired out yesterday afternoon.

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Mommy much prefers cuddling over laundry and vacuuming!

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Then I woke up and tried some blanket.

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That wasn't very delicious.

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Okay. That's all. Get outta here!!

Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins.
(1 Peter 4:8 NIV)

Fun

Although the day was overcast, gloomy and a little drizzly, it started out beautifully.

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William left the house a little later than usual which contributed to some silliness as the kids were getting ready for school.

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As he was about to head off to work with his backpack on, I couldn’t resist the opportunity to snap a “First Day of School” photo to add to the collection of kids on my Facebook newsfeed. Gavin and Greta got a big kick out of that! {notice Greta in the background}

Nora woke up just as it was time for Gavin and Greta to head up to the bus stop, so she insisted on seeing them off.

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The rest of the day was peaceful and productive. Nora had been grouchy much of the previous night for Miss Amy. She had some sleep to catch up on, it seemed, so I got lots of little things done in a whirlwind of organized chaos. It’s always a race to get stuff done while she sleeps. Before I know it, she’s yelling out orders for milkies and she wants it yesterday!

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I'm forced to snack on my hand while I wait for service around here!!

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Mmmm. Milkies.

Nora has been eating really well these past few days!

A day that began so beautifully concluded much in the same way with a faint little rainbow in the sky.

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Yes, my soul, find rest in God;
my hope comes from him.
(Psalm 62:5 NIV)

Wonderful Weekend

It’s hard to believe that it was only a week ago I was feeling so downhearted and depressed — how different everything is right now. It’s been a great weekend! God is so so so so good! Gavin had a birthday sleep over here at the house with 6 boys he’d been in class with in previous years. We’d never done the slumber party thing before, for obvious reasons. We realize the description of “slumber” party is misleading. Perhaps it would be better branded as a “stay up all night drinking copious amounts of rootbeer and having Nerf gun wars” party… Let’s be honest!

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William took the 7 boys to see a movie and in the process learned that he will never, ever, under any circumstances become a school bus driver! But for a couple boys, they were a rowdy bunch and they were just having fun. Very, very loud fun. Their energy levels did eventually wane as the night progressed — or perhaps it was a collective sugar crash. William and I slept soundly without so much as one interruption! Greta was safely and peacefully tucked away at her Meemee’s house. Nora was sooo happy to see her sister when Greta arrived back home!

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Today ALL of us paid a visit to invaded the Welage house, Nora included. We hope we didn’t dash your plans for a nice relaxing Sunday afternoon, Bryan & Jen! Thank you! Nora has been in such great spirits these past few days that we decided to get out and do something, with her included. We had such a nice afternoon, complete with swimming, snacks, and scooter crashes. (Note to Self: Next time bring helmet for Gavin) Nora brought her bikini with her, incase she fancied a dip in the pool. She opted to nap in the air conditioning for the afternoon after a delightful milkies cocktail.

Meanwhile, back outside all of us, especially Greta, enjoyed the company of an extraordinarily friendly butterfly.

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This butterfly hung out with us on the back patio for a good hour, taking turns landing on all of us. It was the neatest thing!

For the most part we are at home with Nora and it can get a little tedious and exhausting. But honestly, I think it would be the same way with any new baby. We ARE able to have some fun “normal” here and there. It was an awesome weekend!

Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. (Philippians 4:8 NIV)

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Relaxing

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Mommy and I had the evening to ourselves so we went swimming in the bathtub!

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Then we went out and sat on the deck!

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I like listening to birdies and crickets and doggies

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My mouth will speak in praise of the Lord .
Let every creature praise his holy name
for ever and ever.
(Psalm 145:21 NIV)

A Day in Pictures

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If anyone speaks, they should do so as one who speaks the very words of God. If anyone serves, they should do so with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. To him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen.
(1 Peter 4:11 NIV)

All Things = Possible!

In a state of semi-awareness I rolled over beneath the warm blankets. The red glow of the alarm clock brought about the realization that it was Thursday. Day of Nora’s cardiologist appointment, and that it was 6:01, time to wake up. Simultaneously William’s phone began resounding its melodious harp alarm tone which indicates to the cat that it’s time to start meowing at the door. No chance of anyone accidentally sleeping in here. I wanted to frisbee the phone out the window and pull the covers up over my head. “Can we just fast forward over this day?” I wondered to myself as I enjoyed the tender shoulder massages from my husband. I had a quiet conversation with God before I eventually mustered up the motivation to swing my feet out of the bed and onto the floor,”Here we go.”

My anxiety was kept under control, but I had no idea what to expect from this appointment. No amount of worrying was going to change anything. Nora hadn’t been herself a couple of days ago, her oxygen sats had been questionable… What will they tell us? I went through the motions of getting myself and the big kids ready for the day, pausing every so often when I felt the ominous fog of fear and worry starting to creep in, “I TRUST you, Jesus, I TRUST you, Jesus, I TRUST you, Jesus…”

Kisses were tenderly administered to Gavin and Greta as they were shuffled up the street to a neighbor’s house from where they would catch the school bus. I’m so very thankful for the support of loving and accommodating neighbors!

The 40 minute drive to Children’s was uneventful and we got there just in time for Nora’s appointment. Upon exiting the elevators, we enter directly into the waiting area. I immediately noticed a kindly older woman sitting by herself in one of the chairs. She had a book in her lap and the most heart-warming smile on her face as our eyes met. I thought for a second that maybe she recognized me from my blog. She looked absolutely tickled pink to see us. I was immediately distracted from my apprehension as I smiled back at her. I picked Nora up out of her stroller to console her fusses while William checked her in with the receptionist.

“She’s a beautiful baby!” the woman commented.

I agreed, bouncing Nora in my arms, placating her cries.

“I can SEE the love you have for this baby,” she said, “You and her Daddy, you’re doing a great job with her.”

Tears welled up in my eyes. What a sweet thing for someone to say. I told her a little bit about Nora, not wanting to be presumtuous that she knew us from the blog. She had never heard of us, never heard of the blog, but somehow seemed like she had been sitting there waiting specifically for us, on a special assignment from God Himself. Her name was Shirley. I fumbled through my purse to find one of the cards I have made up with the blog URL on it to give to her. She gladly accepted it and asked me if there was anything at all that she could do for us. I asked her for prayer. There is a quote about entertaining angels without knowing it. In this instance it couldn’t have been more obvious. We bid her farewell as we were called back to the room for Nora’s echo. My heart was so warmed after that encounter, all fear was gone.

Nora behaved phenomenally for her echo. She was bright eyed and alert, just looking around as the tech moved the ultrasound probe over her tiny chest. She tolerated as much as she could before letting us know that she’d had just about enough. They got the information they needed and ushered us into another room where we waited to speak with the cardiologist. Our wait time was blessed by the precious company of Linda M. who peeked her head in the door right on cue! She is another such angel, but I know her well enough now to know that she does actually have a physical address on this earth! Hard to believe, but true!

We were having such a nice time with Linda that the time passed by quickly and before we knew it, it was our turn with Dr. Hirsch. We went over the past two weeks since we’d been seen last — Nora’s eating habits, any changes in her appearance, breathing, etc. There really wasn’t anything overt to report except her fussy Monday. (But who ISN’T fussy on Mondays?) In Dr. Hirsch’s opinion she looked great. She was developing and gaining weight just as she should. So then on to the echo results… I stood there with my hands tightly clasped, still in prayer for the results that already were. He explained that THERE HAS BEEN AN IMPROVEMENT IN THIS ECHO COMPARED TO THE ONE TWO WEEKS AGO!! The pressures have improved, as has the circulation of the blood and they are also hearing the murmur (which is a good thing with a VSD)!!! While there was no visible evidence that the hole has decreased in size, these are all indications that it IS decreasing! We don’t have to come back for another THREE WEEKS!! We shook hands and thanked Dr. Hirsch before he left the room to go on to his next patient. Happy tears were on auto-flow all over the place.

As if that weren’t enough awesomeness for one day – it only continued. We gathered our belongings, made our next appointment and headed toward the elevator. This was about two hours after we had arrived and met Shirley, yet there she was again. Her eyes lit up when she saw me and she said she’d been looking for us. She had a little something for us, she said, and with that stuck an envelope in the pocket of my purse. Just as quickly as she had appeared, she was gone again. I was excited to see what she had given me and wondered what it was. Sweet Linda helped me out while William went ahead to go get the car. With my hands full of an EIGHT POUND NINE OUNCE baby girl I wasn’t able to look at the envelope until I got out into the car.

We hugged Linda goodbye and loaded up into the car. Eagerly I reached for the envelope that Shirley had given me.

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I opened it up and there was a $50 bill inside. Speechless and even more convinced that she fell straight out of the sky and landed there in that waiting room especially for us. I showed it to William. Tears flowing. What an amazing, incredible, beautiful, perfect morning. THANK. YOU. GOD. Shirley, if you are reading this, thank you so very much! (I’m not sure if they have the internet in heaven!)

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My three birds made an appearance late this afternoon! :)


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Greta and Nora on a walk *by themselves* (wink)


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Party rocker in the house tonight...

Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but not with God; all things are possible with God.”
(Mark 10:27 NIV)