Wednesday, February 9, 2011

One Rock At A Time

So, here I sit. So incredibly grateful for the rocking chair. The white one that was sitting in our garage for several years after we moved Mayce and Bryce to older rooms, and thought we had no need for it. The one that was so simple and so I thought....until Blake hit "the phase." And when I type, phase, I mean "angry, frustrated, clingy, disobedient, sad" phase. We had only been in the new house 6 months, our 4th precious baby was here, and taking some new attention, and life as he knew it was upside down. Not to mention the fact that I was now homeschooling two, and needing some specific time in the day to do so. He was sad, he was almost 2 and he was NOT having it. We found that bedtime began to be hard on him, and he quickly shifted from laying down quietly, to crying for several minutes. These were Blake's for mine.

I was now a mother of 4, six and under. I was recovering from delivery, settling into/keeping a home triple the size of our other, homeschooling a 5 and 6 year old, shifting with my hubby as he transitioned in his job, all the while, realizing that days at home were now the norm, and going out was now quite difficult. I found solace and comfort in the sweet, short, time I had with my Father before my kids woke up, and I put all I had into making each day enjoyable, purposeful and disciplined. Then...Blake hit his phase, and I hit a new phase of tired! Brayden was 4 months old, and we could just not pinpoint why this was so difficult for him. After much prayer, I walked out to the garage one day, and felt two words pound in my heart..."rocking chair." "God" I said, "he's too old for that!" His response "it's not just for's for you too."

Needless to say, that caught me off guard. But, you better believe I ripped that chair out of the garage that second and cleaned it up! We moved it to his room, and began reading his bible story in the chair, then rocking and singing love songs to him for about 15 minutes. As I would sit there with Blake snuggled on my chest, I was overwhelmed with emotion. It literally seemed that each rock of that chair brought healing. It was like we were both being mended in our heart with every single squeaky motion. As I would sing/worship and whisper every phrase I could think of to tell Blake how much I loved him, my Father would literally do the same thing to me. It produced the most incredibly intimate moments.....every single day, every single rock.

One day, while rocking, I began to thank the Lord for this "simple" solution to such a difficult phase. He began to flood my heart with this incredible concept of healing one step, or rock, at a time. See, it's often the simplicity of His plan that is so impactful for His glory. He could have given David supernatural strength, but instead he gave a stone. He could have given Moses a fleet of angels to whisk the Israelites away, but instead he gave him a staff and an interpreter. He could have given the world a mind-blowing heavenly entrance of the King, but instead he gave us a precious baby in a humble environment. This mommy business is not easy, and I will never claim it to be, but I certainly know that if our focus on His perspective is lost for one second.....if our eyes leave the Master and glance at the storm of our circumstance.....we will begin to sink faster than we can imagine. Just like Peter, we too can get weary, afraid and overwhelmed (understandably) and begin to lose sight of Who is guiding our faith walk. The story is not in our weakness, though, but rather in His beautiful redemption.....which He freely gives without hesitation!

I called out, and He the form of a chair. Never would have imagined this white hunk of wood to bring so much peace and mending to our hearts......but the Rock of Ages knows exactly how powerful one rock with Him will be, and for that, I am eternally grateful!

"The Lord is my Rock, my fortress, my deliverer; my God is my Rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold." (Ps. 18:2)

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Fall Festival.....Take 4......ACTION!

This was one of the best years we have had at the ol' festival and I was thrilled! See, this little outing has become quite a "task" over the past few years. Let me explain:
Year one: Mayce and Bryce are 3 and 4, it is VERY cold and they both have a runny nose! We endure because we really wanted them to have fun, but I think it ended up being harder on everyone in the end......"next year will be better" I say:) Well.......
Year two: Mayce and Bryce are 4 and 5 and I am 8 months pregnant with Blake and SHOULD be on bedrest. I just can't resist seeing the kids and the weather was a little better than the year before, soooooo, I haul my lawn chair from event to event and sit and watch. Towards the end, everyone was tired of waiting on me, I'm sure, and my poor father in law was sweet enough to carry my chair around the entire stadium! HA! "Next year, we WILL enjoy this!" Well.......
Year three: I am pregnant, AGAIN, with Brayden, yet this time only 6 months:) About 45 minutes into it, I decide to walk about 10 feet from my family to get some popcorn for Blake. As I sift through the masses, wait in a LONG line, and head back, I quickly realize they have left where they were. Of course, I did NOT take my phone, and I proceeded to be lost for the next 45 minutes, only to finally catch up with them as all the kids were getting fussy and we were ready to walk out!! The only "watching" of the kids I managed to do was on the camera in the car on the way home:( "Next year HAS to be better!" Well.......
Year four: Yayyyyy! Finally, a success!! Now, don't get me wrong, I have loved being with the fam every year, but we have certainly made some sacrifices for the good ol' festival, and I was ready for an easy, fun outing:) The weather was perfect, the kids were happy and well, let's just say, I NEVER left for popcorn, Ha! Plus, we were able to do all they wanted to before the number of children reached 15, 000!! :) So, here are the pics from this year......Hallelujah!!

Daddy and Blake (23 months)
Ropin' for candy:)

Mama and Brayden (7 months)
Blake LOVED the toddler area....He thought he was big stuff:)

Mayce and Bryce waiting for a ride

And finally, the kids doing what they do best......"seeing who can go the fastest!" :)

Thursday, August 5, 2010

10 Years....

......Hallelujah! 10 years and 4 kiddos later, Monty and I are closer than ever before, more in love and stronger than we could have ever imagined.....and all glory belongs to our Father!! What a beautiful journey this has been so far, and although there have been some deep valley's, I could not imagine one second without this sweet man and his indescribable love for me!! Monty out did himself this year and planned an entire 4 day trip without me having any idea what was to come! We ended up in Beaver Creek, CO at the most incredible resort I have ever been too:) He organized dinners at some fantastic restaurants, a horse back ride to a remote mountain top restaurant, a 3 hour spa treatment, ridiculous shopping (haha), and golfing (of which I don't do, but LOVE to ride in the cart and watch him because I never get to do that anymore:)!! This man just continues to amaze me with his love and kindness. of which I do not deserve. The Lord has used Monty's unconditional love throughout these years to literally heal my heart and break through some major unlovable walls I had. So, Monty, there are no words....."thank you" is just not enough, but you are everything I could ever dream of, and as long as I am this earth, I want to be beside you!!
"His mouth is sweetness itself; he is altogether lovely. This is my lover, this is my friend." (Song of Solomon 5:16)

Plane ride to CO

View from our room
Flowers waiting for me when we arrived:) They were exactly like the ones he gave me when he proposed 11 years ago...two red and one white, representing the union of our lives and Christ being the constant center of it all. I cried like a baby then and I cried again on the trip! HA!

Right before horse back ride

Monty's dream home:)

Tuesday, April 6, 2010


Let me just start by saying a big "Hallelujah!" that Brayden James is here and I am no longer hauling this pregnant body up and down my stairs! :) He is one of the most beautiful, sweet spirited children, and we have enjoyed him so much in the last 2 weeks. It just feels like we are complete now, and by complete I mean, "run mama ragged between 4 little ones" complete! HA! That's a great feeling:)
The last few months have certainly not been without their challenges, and I will be the first to say that choosing to fight sometimes made me weary. The details are just details, and not really needed here, but as a whole, I will say that I welcomed this new season with open arms......and alot of green energy tea:) We are settled in to our home and grateful to be passed the moving in stage. Monty is managing his office now, and walking in so much grace it's mind blowing. Let me take a few sentences just to say what an absolutely incredible man he is! You know, many people lose sight of treating their family as good as they treat those around them, but I can honestly say, that man treats us better than anyone I have ever come in contact with. When he's here, I just want to be right next to him, and when he's gone, I miss him like crazy. He is amazing.....never have I met anyone who loves the Lord with such purity and humility.
So, back to life. Monty is enjoying this new position and doing rather well at it, if I do say so myself;) We are currently taking a "break" from homeschool until we get on a better schedule with little man, so the kids are trying to see if they can set a world record by how long they can stay outside! Seriously.....I told Monty if we chunked a tent and some food outside, they would never come in:)
Finally, on to our current season, the "Brayden/Nana" season, as I like to call it:) My precious mother quit her job in February because she wanted to be the hands of Jesus to us.....and I mean that! I don't think she even knew how much the Lord would use her, she just knew her heart stirred to be here more and help me, and she was more than obedient to that call! I don't know what I would have done without her, and will forever be grateful for her heart. In February, she started coming for 3 or 4 days, every week, just to help around the house and be an incredible mama and grandma! She is still coming currently, and I am not sure if we remember how to do life with out her now:):) Nana, you are a gift from our Lord, and words cannot express how you have blessed us.
So, here we are. Brayden joined us on March 22nd, after going into labor during an incredibly anointed service, and laboring all night in the most peaceful setting I have ever felt. The Lord gave me a very vivid picture during that service, of me running and jumping over this large canyon. Now, I have never done the Long Jump in track, but that is exactly what my body looked like. It felt as if He was saying that in order to move into this new season, I had to run and jump, and never look back. I felt that there are times that we walk, times we run, and times we sit still, but then there are some seasons that move you to a completely different spot, and you just have to JUMP! It was right after that when the contractions started and Brayden arrived at 5:15 in the morning, after never having a contraction closer than 2 minutes apart. We pushed one time, and he came with ease. Monty and I savored every moment of his arrival, and words can't express the beauty of the Lord in the room that night.

Here are a few pics from the last few weeks. Please, please remember.....there is a Mighty, Mighty Maker who designed you with intention and certainty! He is the Defender and Victor, and no matter what the enemy intends or pretends, we have a beautiful choice to walk hand in hand.....trusting all the way. Trusting through the pain, the heartache, the exhaustion and the rejoicing. You were MADE to worship and, I am of the opinion, will find little satisfaction until you know that. Bless you....may He stir your heart to JUMP and never look back!

Friday, December 11, 2009

Blog Slacker!!

Ok, so I am totally a blog slacker!! I never thought I would have to admit that, but now I think it has gotten so bad, I must join a 12 step program;) There have been TONS of changes in the Durham house, and I feel like we are just now getting our feet back under us. Now, let's see, where to begin? Well, I guess I can just do a super quick recap, then show some cute pics of the kids.......yeah, that sounds pretty good:) First, I am getting fatter by the second and really feeling well for this fourth pregnancy:) Still having the circulation issues, but probably to be expected when I am on this number! HA! That being said, we MOVED and it was.....well, slow....slower than I ever wanted, but "lesson teaching" slow for sure. I am learning to gain some much needed patience, and drop some yucky's a good thing, just not fun. In the midst of the move, the Lord and my Nanny had a beautiful encounter, and she went to live with Him:) The house certainly became a side note, and the new revelation of Godly character and principles was laid afresh in my heart.
So, here we are. All settled in, meeting neighbors, hanging pictures, planning get-togethers and adjusting to STAIRS! Now, I won't harp on this point, but it must be said.....the reality of the level of "out of shapeness" I was in, slapped me in the face when I met those stairs! :) They are Holy sandpaper for me, and I love them.....I do.....I tell myself that everyday, as I climb them exactly 437 times before lunch:)

Kids are healthy, happy and huge! Mayce is as beautiful as ever, and the biggest helper I have ever met. Her compassion level just blows me away. Her favorite phrase is "mom, let me do that. You have a baby in your tummy. Just sit." Now, whose not gonna love that:) Bryce is still my mighty man with passion running out his ears. He loves all, and has the sweetest, most sensitive heart. To say he is a protector would be an understatement! Then, there's little Blake. He is growing like crazy, and not interested in walking in the least bit, although we politely informed him he is a year old now and could start anytime:) He is so love able, and SO inquisitive. I love to watch his eyes when he gets picked up, because they scan the room faster than lightening, taking full advantage of this new aerial view he just received to decide where he will conquer next:) All in all, we are well......and blessed. I see all the works of the Lord over the past ten years of our marriage journey, and if I think of it longer than 2 seconds, I will weep. He is good, folks, really really good. His mercies are new, His Name is strong, His power is mighty and His love is relentless.

Here are a few pics of what's been going on and I promise more house pics soon. Thanks for indulging the extremely long "catch-up" blog, but in a few years, I would have forgotten some of these beautiful you had to put up with the wordy mama today:) Bless you!

Pulled all the Christmas decor out for the new house:) YAYY!

Blake after his first haircut:) He did so good!

He also figured out how to put his lunch in that new hair cut:)

Bryce practicing some "new tricks," as he calls it, on his bike. Notice we do all said "tricks" while bike is completely still! HA!

Our first snow (well, kindof) in the new house:)

Monday, November 9, 2009

One Crazy Weekend!

What a crazy weekend we had!! My mom came down on Thursday night to help me get a jump start on my packing, so Friday we hit the ground running. I had noticed that Mayce had been acting a little different on Thursday, but just thought she was a little tired. On Friday, she seemed a little grumpy and did not eat really well. Now, for the past week and a half, the nasty stomach bug had filtered through both of my boys, but it was fairly mild and went quickly. It had been a week since anyone was sick, so I thought we were in the clear:) Well, we went to bed a little late Friday night, and Mayce wanted her Nana to sleep with her. We had all been asleep about 2 hours when I noticed the hall light and bathroom light come on suddenly. I jumped out of bed to find my mom cleaning off sheets, pillows and clothes because Mayce had gotten sick in the bed. She was laying on the couch, and in the short time it took me to get to her from asking what was going on, she had gotten sick again! My heart broke in a million pieces for her, because she was just miserable. She continued to throw up for the next 3 hours about every 15 to 20 minutes. After the first 5 times, I began to call our pediatrician and the ER. When her doctor called back at 3:30 am, she ordered her a RX for nausea. She took one and fell asleep, with me sleeping on the floor next to her bed. She literally turned over every 5 minutes, and it was very obvious she was hurting. By 6 am the next day, she woke up with a 102 fever and pain. She was very miserable and very sick. I still thought she had a really bad stomach bug, so we began to try the popsicle/juice route for the next few hours. However, I could not get her to try much and her fever was increasing. About 6 pm that night, Monty and I decided to take her to Cooks Urgent Care, and I am more grateful to our Heavenly Father for that wisdom than you will ever know! After an IV, blood samples, Strep test, H*N* test, x-rays, and u-sample, we were very surprised to find out she had a UTI with the main infection being in the upper part causing pain. Needless to say, we were relieved it was not her appendix or any other flu, but we knew this was very painful:( The doctor felt that she might have had a virus too, so all the way around, she was pretty sick. Our experience there, despite all the tests, could not have been more peaceful, and we were blessed by two beautiful nurses who passionately loved the Lord and detected His Spirit in Mayce's little heart. Isn't it amazing how His Spirit just draws "all men to Himself?!" One nurse asked Mayce what her favorite book to read was and she answered "Luke.....from the bible." She just smiled and said "mine are Acts and Romans!" They, then, began to talk about their favorite scriptures:) What a sweet and comforting moment He provided. We ended up coming home around 11:30 pm, after receiving some fluids, antibiotics and nausea meds. I would love to report that she was 100% the next day, but sadly, this will be a few days of recovery. She still has not eaten well, but I am sure in the next few days, we will be up and running:) In fact, her Nana took matters in her own hands this morning and offered her a dollar to eat some toast.....and let's just say, Mayce is a little richer today! HA! Thanks for all the prayers from our dear friends, and thank you, Nana, for serving us and being such a blessing through this entire process!! Please be encouraged today in knowing our God IS a "strong tower for the righteous to run too" and an "ever-present help in our time of need!":)

This was soon after she recieved her IV, which she was such a trooper for:)
(sorry pic is so blurry, all I had was my phone camera)

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Durham Family....come out, come out, wherever you are!!

Well, it's been a while since we've been in the blog world, so I thought I would post of few pics of what we have been up to:) Sadly, for a months worth of time, it's not a whole lot, but I forget to take pictures often.....pregnancy brain!! HA! By the way, we are also excited to announce that sweet Durham #4 will be a BOY!! Bring on the quarter backs! We will also be moving in the next 30 days and we are absolutely THRILLED about that:) The kids are so ready for more room and I will try to take some pictures of that little adventure;) Be blessed in His presence today, as you seek to fulfill His beautiful plan for your life.....the joy of that journey will overwhelm you!
Trying to hit the park when it's nice out. This particular day, the kids totally cracked me up! Mayce and Bryce really wanted to play with these bigger kids and were kindof being snubbed until the big kids made a big mistake....stopped to have a play plan meeting! HA! Mayce jumped right in the middle and asked them why they were not letting the younger kids play and suggested an idea of how everyone could play together. In about 5 seconds this group began to take the lead from a 5 year old and the rest is history! Too funny....her daddy was proud:)

Blake enjoying his park experience:) Love the sun grins!

We've also enjoyed digging for worms and trying to sneak them in and show mama.....nasty:)

I have mentioned before how much Blake enjoys being outside, and not much has changed:) We also like to sample the diverse pallet of "food" that the ground has to offer! HA!

Lastly, we have been teaching our 11 month old to read......what? doesn't everyone do this??? JUST KIDDING! I just found him sitting in this chair one day and it was too cute to pass up throwing a book in front of him:) This lasted a grand total of 5 seconds!!