Wednesday, January 29

On the mend

I stayed home with A today so I could keep up with her meds and make sure she got plenty of rest. We made a Target run this morning for some things to keep A comfortable today and she found another Frozen dress she had to have!  She loves it-she fell asleep in it tonight!
Lots of rest and snuggles today!
She was feeling better tonight so we celebrated with froyo!

Tuesday, January 28


It has been SO cold in Iowa this week! Wind chill in the negative 30s!  We've managed to have some fun despite the cold! Friday night we went out for pizza!
We then went to a Dance Marathon fundraiser at Ainsley's school. She was super excited to see her teacher Miss Sara! She danced the night away! 
Our wash machine stopped working this weekend! Ugh-thankfully Ryan has fixed it! Ainsley helped too!

Sunday we helped with children's church check-in so we dressed Ainsley in a warm dress and braved the cold!

Dinner at Steak n Shake!

We took A to the doctor tonight-she has strep so we started an antiobiotic tonight. Hope the meds kick in soon!
In the meantime this vanilla shake made her feel a bit better last night!

Thursday, January 23

Hope in the midst of darkness

Since 2004 we have had the honor of sponsoring a sweet girl in Haiti through Compassion International.  
When we started sponsoring her she was four.  This December she turned 14!
Her name is Germita.  
Germita & I write to each other 2-3 times a year.  Compassion International recommends that you write to your sponsor child frequently to provide "hope in the midst of darkness".
Germita tells me about her family and always asks me to pray that she would be smart and do well in school.  At times I feel a desperation in her desire to learn and do well in school.  For many years she would write about her struggles in school...she doesn't seem to have confidence in her academic ability.
My prayer for Germita over the years has been for her protection, health and that she would know her worth as a beautiful child of God.
I have told her for many years that she is smart, beautiful and capable.
Ever since she became a teenager I told her that we wanted to continue to support her if she wanted to go to college.  Through Compassion International you can support a student through college in their home country for a minimal monthly payment.  
Germita never wrote to me about college...but I kept mentioning it while encouraging her with scriptures and letting her know that she can do it!
February will celebrate our 10 year anniversary of knowing Germita and we got a letter from her this week.
She told me that she is now in grade 9 and that she wants to be a nurse!  She went on to say that "the question of university (college) is the object of my thoughts.  I believe that God will make my dreams come true."  I wrote back to her right away and told her how proud I was of her.  I also shared that Ryan and I work at a college and help students be successful so we will be with her every step of the way.  
This summer we started sponsoring a boy who is also from Haiti (through World Wide Village) and he is in 2nd grade now--so I think the planning for college will work out perfect with our Ainsley being a few years away from heading off to college!  Germita normally signs her name at the end of her letters.  This time she signed the letter "your beloved daughter".  

Monday, January 20

School fun

Today Ains had school so we were able to take her and pick her up since her daycare and our work was closed. Here is Ainsley helping to pick up the balls at the end of they day-she looks so serious :)!
It was fun to see her running and playing!

On our drive home Ryan went down a big hill and Ains put her hands in the air like we were on a roller coaster! Ha! She kept saying "faster, faster"!
At school today they had several activities to teach the kids about the good work of Martin Luther King, Jr.  

Wednesday, January 15


Tuesday we took Ains to the eye doctor.  The doctor said her eyes look great!
She had fun playing while we were there!
And she ate LOTS of snacks! It's hard to keep her entertained for two hours at the doctor!
That night we went to Hobby Lobby to get her Valentine's Day cards and treat bags! She wanted to stop and smell all of the flowers!
She's a good shopping buddy!

Monday, January 13

13 Years

Ryan and I were married 13 years ago today in Clinton, IL!  We were both SO young--just fresh out of college.  We got married and moved to Texas where Ryan was serving as a missionary in Mexico at the time.  

In college, I fell in love with Ryan's heart for The Lord and his care for others. Before we started dating I wanted to make sure he would be marriage material!  So we were friends for three years and then started dating during our senior year in college!
He is a loving dad who would give his life for our sweet girl. He has said many times that he wishes he could bare her medical concerns, and I believe he would in a heartbeat.
He is kind, caring and approaches life very differently than me (which is a good balance)! Our marriage has had some unexpected joys and sorrows but I could not imagine living life with anyone other than Ryan! 
He makes us laugh and knows how to fix just about anything! I love you Ryan's to many more fun years and the next adventure!

Friday, January 10

Disney Day 7: Goodbye & Tips!

We are so sad to say goodbye, but so thankful for the fun memories we had this week!  Angie and Avs left for the airport around 9 am and we left at 11 am.

My sweet girl got dressed today and wheeled her stroller to the door and said "lets go to Disney"! She's going to miss this place!
I'm going to miss these views and the warm weather!

TIPS (this is mainly for me if we visit again)! Find the Baby Care Center-this was SO helpful since Ains is still in pull-ups! Do a couple of character meals-Cinderella and Chef Mickeys was our favorite! Take naps to recharge-well worth the travel time back to the hotel! It's okay not to see it all, enjoy what you see! Extra magic hours ARE magical! We got to ride a ton of rides with no lines! Take some time to relax-my sister and I took an hour one night and hung out in the hammock by the pool! Disney is not all fun and is WORK with little ones! So...take lots of breaks and rest when you can! Have fun-it goes by quick!

On our flight home Ryan fell asleep, so Ainsley put some stickers on him!
On to games!
We made it back to Iowa!
Ains was puzzled by the chair in the bathroom so she tried it out and couldn't stop giggling!
We got in the car and Ainsley kept yelling "let's go to Disney"! It may be a long night!