Sunday, May 12, 2013

Happy Mother's Day!!

She stood over a hot stove making Yakisoba for her Marine and three small children when the labor pains began. Two hours later, this brave Scottish lass gave birth to her fourth baby (5th...including the precious one she delivered after he/she had already gone on to Heaven, too beautiful for earth.) Jacqueline had just come from her first foreign country, USA, to be stationed in yet another, Japan. There wasn't another woman as naturally, stunningly, beautiful as she. The red, waist-length hair, perfectly freckled face, big blue eyes, and thick Scottish brogue, made her stand out whether she liked it or not.

As I sit writing (texting with one hand while I nurse Micah lol), I can't help but imagine my very own mommy giving of herself for me and my three siblings once upon a time. I never truly understood the love, worry, fears, dreams, sacrifice, and joy she was giving hourly until I was blessed with a baby of my own. A mother's love truly is unexplainable! Thank you mom for being: adventurous, brave, for boldly loving us, sacrificing your dreams to help us reach ours, the tears you wept in prayer for us, for drying our eyes when we broke our skin, bones, pride, and hearts, for telling us so often that we were unique and beautiful just the way we were that we actually believed it ;), for teaching me the joy of taking care of a family, for making the most of every circumstance you were in, for creatively pouring the importance of values and faith in God into us, for fighting thyroid cancer and using your years since to give to others, and for all the memories I hold on to dearly!

All your children are grown now (and are taller than you ;) lol), but we still look up to our mommy! When we hit difficult bumps on our separate journeys, you are still the first one we want to call. To know that the powerful prayers of mum are blasting up to Heaven's door on our behalf, is so comforting. You are the bravest, strongest, and most compassionate woman I know. Thank you for speaking the truth to us when we need it. I know you are not perfect...but you're pretty close to it. ;) I love you mom! Happy Mother's Day and many many more.

I also want to give praise to my mother-in-law, Linda! She raised five outstanding children and fought in prayer on their behalf. Now I am blessed to be remembered in her supplications.
This woman is remarkable and I am certain that she could do absolutely anything she put her mind to. Stephen is an incredible man with integrity and character, a loving husband, a fun and courageous father, and a hard worker in whatever he is given to do. I believe he is all these thing and more because of the constant guidance and instruction that was poured into him by a very wise mom. :) Thank you, Linda, for quickly adopting me into the family and making me "your favorite daughter-in-law." I am so thankful that God blessed me with the world's greatest MIL! I love getting to glean from your wisdom and years of experience. We love you, Ma! :)

And to my sisters, sisters-in-law, girlfriends, adopted mothers, gran, grandmas, aunties, mentor moms, and those who have invested in my growth as a young mom...THANK YOU! :) Thank you for being real, transparent, and genuine. This being a mom business is tough stuff and sometimes it's SO encouraging to know that someone else's kids have rolled off the changing table (twice), eaten PB&J's for the past 3 meals, watched a movie so that you can have a moment to finish a project, and have made artwork out of their poop (true story!) Thank you moms for lifting me up at just the right moment. I love you all!!

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Saturday, May 4, 2013

5K By The Bay Day

This morning I had the privilege of joining some motivated PWOC (Protestant Women of the Chapel) women in Newport News for a 5K. A fellow Chaps spouse, Reta, planned this event and sent out an email inviting a host of us to run for the Riverside Rehabilitation Institute. When I saw the email, I thought to myself, "That looks like fun, but Stephen is gone for the weekend so I'll have the kiddos to push in the double jogging stroller (which is a workout that I'm not proficient in yet! Lol) ." I almost registered but then decided to close out of that web browser for some reason.

Well, the next morning at our meeting, I was talking to a friend who mentioned that she had already registered but wouldn't be able to make the race and was looking for someone to run in her place. :) I thought that was conformation that God had provided and would therefore give me the ability to "run and not grow weary."

Here's some pictures that I took and some that I stole from my friend, Reta (thanks!)

We got up at 0600 to get ready to head up to Newport News. It started raining on our way up but thankfully it stopped when we got there...mostly. Tierzah had a movie to watch and a million snacks to keep her tummy happy.
Both kids did really well!

The beginning of our race...

Awesome PWOC military spouses! Krysty and her little ones, Kelly, Deb, and Reta!

Sandy and her hubby cheered us on! Notice their wind blown was soooo coooold and windy.

I have a big smile because the coolest thing had just happened...I could see the Finish Line and was fighting with all I had left to run as fast as I could against the wind and mist. Then out of nowhere, a teenaged boy gestured to me that he would push my stroller and run alongside me so that I could run faster to the finish line! He literally carried my load at my toughest moment so that I could make it to the end in one piece. ;) It made me think about how life is a lot like that. We're all running our individual races but we need one another. We need community, friends to share life with, and we also need to have our eyes and heart open to see other people who just might be at their wits end and may need us to "run a mile" carrying their load for them. I can not even count the number of times God has blessed me through family, loved ones, and strangers who have become wonderful friends! "Thank you!" to the boy who helped me today, and every single one of you who has taken a moment to encourage or lift me up.

This is a perfect picture of what I'm talking about. The man in yellow was pulling the gentleman behind him. I could see that the man in white was obviously in the process of rehabilitation and struggling to keep up, but his friend didn't slow down or quit helping him to press forward. I'm thankful that God is faithful to pull me through tough circumstances and even days were I just feel spiritually, emotionally, or physically in need of restoration.

Anyway! My time was 37 mins which is definitely not my personal best but considering I had never run that distance pushing 80+ lbs...I'd say it was a fabulous run. ;)

Later today, both kids decided they didn't want to take naps (ahh!) so I loaded them up and we walked around base, flew a princess kite, and I inhaled 1k+ calories at McDonalds for dinner. Don't you love how they put the calories in plain sight on the menu now? ;)

I always have more to write but we'll save that for another time. I will ask for prayer, though. It's absolutely insane to realize that we only have 7 weeks left in VA before the movers come to pack up our home and move us to CA. Please pray for us as there are so many details involved in this process.

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