Love you more

Every time I tell Ian I love him he tells me "I love you more". He asked me yesterday if I loved Ava more than him. I told him that before Ava was born I wondered how I would love anyone else as much as I loved him, but God had given me so much love that I loved Ava just as much as I loved him. He told me "well, I love Ava more than you"! Oh, that shocked me but I would not want it any other way!!!

Welcome to motherhood!

Welcome to Motherhood....again! This is the first week we have been by ourselves. All of our nannies have gone home. I decided to give Ava a bath. So while she was a sleep a got everything together. I filled the little tub with water, making sure not to get it too hot. Made sure the towel was laid out, and got all of the items I needed. Here we go. I can do this on my own. Of course she started crying! I cleaned up her dirty diaper and put her in the tub. She immediately pooped in the tub...a bunch!!! So I cleaned her off as good as I could and let all that good water out. I picked her up and ran to the bathroom to get another rag. When I grabbed the rag, another one fell in the toilet! So I have a wet slippery baby in my hands, a clean rag and a wet one from the toilet. I went back to back to the sink to clean her up and about that time, she peeped! Luckily it missed me and went on the floor. I know what you are saying...Welcome to motherhood!!! I LOVE IT!!!!

Lots to be Thankful for

I have so much to be thankful for. First of all, thank you God for loving me and sending Jesus for me. Now I can live an abundant life with Him. Next, I am so very thankful for my family. I have wonderful parents who have dedicated their lives to raise us in a godly home. They have shown me the importance of having a relationship with our heavenly father. Then there are my sisters. Oh my. When we were growing up, I never imagined we would ever like each other like we do now! I am totally embarrassed of the way I acted growing up. We literally fought like cats and dogs! God knew what he was doing when he put us together. He knew we would all need each other when we were older. He knew I would need them when I was forty and was going to have a baby!! Each one of them have their own gift. It is so neat to see what God has designed us all to be. Lastly, God has blessed me with a wonderful family of my own. I have a husband that takes a stand in leading our family to serve Jesus. I am amazed every day of how much James loves and cares for his family. He has been right there with me and we have tried our best to do what God wants us to do. God has really blessed us. He has given me more than I ever deserve. Thank you God for my family and my two wonderful children. Your plans are always best!!! Thanks so much!

She is here!!

I know, I know. I should have updated a week ago, but things have been a little busy lately!
Wednesday, November 10, turned out to be the big day! We had an induction planned on the 11th. I kept telling myself and others that I had a feeling she would arrive on a different day. She has never been planned or has followed a plan. So Wednesday, I began having contractions. I really did not think they were the real things. They were not consistent. Well, about 11:00, I began tracking them. Kristi Morgan came over to stay with me. (what a sweetheart!!!) At 11:45 I text James and asked him if he had anyone to cover for his bible study if we had to go to hospital. He came home early for lunch. I called the doctor to ask them what I needed to do. Low and behold my doctor is off on Wednesday!!!!! The PA asked me how many contractions I had have and she told me I needed to get to the office ASAP! Well we loaded up in the truck and when we hit the county road, I looked at the clock. It was 12:50. I remember thinking "this is going to be a LONG trip to Shreveport!! Oh my, have I waited too late? We arrived at the office at 1:40. They saw I was in true labor and sent me to Labor and Delivery at 2:15. All my family arrived by 2:30. I finally got an epidural at around 4:00. Ava Grace was born at 6:09pm. What a day! Needless to say, the epidural did not work!! I worked and worry so much about being able to have a stinking epidural and it did not work!!!! All I can say is this has been an unforgettable experience from the beginning and it continued all the way to the birth! I bet it will continue being an unforgettable experience for many years!!

Another Day

I start my day about 5:15. I had a feeling that I should stay at home. I was feeling a little sluggish and usually that means I have too much dilantin (seizure med). I kept telling myself that I could wait till after school to get it checked. I got finished with my bible study and went to get dressed when I received a text. It was from Robin(my sister) and she always seems to give me encouragement just when I need it. Well after I read it, I began to cry and could not stop! I was having a meltdown!! I had five minutes to get dressed plus my nose was bleeding like crazy. I realized I was not going to make it to school and maybe I needed to take the day off! I called into work and began my maternity leave a day early. On top of all of that, my lower back started hurting. That's just great, was this back labor and what should I do? I got James to cart me around town for a few errands. We decided to have a little lunch so he dropped me off at Daddy Sams (BBQ place) and went down about a block to leave my car to get the oil changed. We ate lunch with several friends who are nurses. When I was was leaving, Robin calls me. As I was leaving, my shoe broke! And I was going to walk to get the car. No such luck. I had James go get the car while stood out in the middle of Daddy Sam's parking lot talking to Robin because I could not walk anywhere. I know this sounds crazy for me to write about but at the time all I could think about is OMG!! What else could go wrong. I finally made it home and took a short nap. After supper, I had a pretty bad pain in my eye. After about 30 min. I started getting drainage from the eye! OMG I could bet you $100 I have pink eye!!!! What in the world? I had a few students that had this Monday. So now I have to find med. tomorrow and find a way to keep James and Ian from catching it. I guess I should have listened to my body at 5:15 this morning and gone back to bed!!!

Birthday Time!

Well the time has come to have the Birthday Party we have been waiting for. We are to be at the hospital at 5:30am on Thursday. We had our last sonogram today and she is pretty big. If I had to go to due day, we would have a good 9 pounder! She is knocking on the door of 8 pounds right now. Ian was talking to my belly this afternoon and said, "hurry up Ava, we want to hold you". I have mixed feelings. Yes, I am ready to hold her but while she is inside, I know she is safe and I know where she is! When she is here, I can not keep her from growing like crazy and sometime she will be out of my site. I guess I will just have to cherish every minute I have with her like I do with Ian. We will keep you posted.

Due Date moved up!

I just noticed that I have not posted about our new due date! Dr. Briery, our specialist, has given the permission to induce two weeks early. That means in five days, November 11, 2010 we will be holding our little girl!!! We go Monday to make all of the arrangements. Since all of this has been God's plan and timing, we would not be surprise if she decided to make her appearance at any time. We will keep you posted!

God speaks through Judges

I hope this is not too long of a post, but I have to organize my thoughts. I am reading in the book of Judges. As I have done several times before, I said Lord what are you going to show me in Judges? It never fells He comes through. In chapter 6, it starts off with "Again the Israelites did evil in the eyes of the Lord" When will they ever learn? Then I thought they are God's chosen people. We as Christians are His chosen people and we mess up all the time. When will we ever learn? Reading on I came to where God sent an angel to call Gideon to help the Israelites.

Let me pause and tell you that I am in the early stages of labor. I am preparing for the arrival of this little miracle that God has given me. It has been an exciting 36 weeks. None of it has been the way I planned. It has been HIS plan and I have a feeling that her arrival will not be as I plan either! I have a doctors appointment today so I have stayed home from work to pack our bags just in case. I have enjoyed this morning more than you would ever know. The quietness of the house (other than a load of clothes washing) has been so nice. Beds are made, and I have picked up all of remnants of Ian's star wars battle from the living room floor. Then I set down to read my Bible and gaze out all my windows at the calves grazing in the pasture. "God what are you going to show me today?" I have to be honest, I keep thinking about this little girl inside me. What will she look like? What if something is wrong? Her eyesight, her hearing, her mental capabilities, and...what if she is a he! (Lots of crying this morning!)

So to go back to Gideon. The angel of the Lord appeared to him. He told Gideon to prepare a sacrifice. When he did, Gideon placed it on a rock. Then the angel touched the meat and bread and fire flared from the rock consuming it. Miracle #1. Then Gideon proceeds to either test God or needs more encouragement to do what God wants him to do. He lays out the fleece. Gideon knew that asking this might make displease God, but yet demands two more miracles! It is true that to make good decisions, we need facts. Gideon has all the facts, but still he hesitated obeying God because he wanted more proof. In my commentary, it said that demanding extra signs was an indication of unbelief. Fear often makes us wait for more confirmation when we should be taking action. Visible signs are unnecessary if they only confirm what we already know is true.

Lord, you have brought us a long way. There have been more signs than I can even begin to count. Forgive me of my unbelief. Forgive me for not believing you are going to take us all the way through. However you have formed and created Ava will be perfect. You are God. I will be her number one supporter throughout her life. My purpose is to bring her to a relationship with you and I pray you will give me the wisdom and knowledge to do that. You have blessed me with a wonderful family and you have called me to lead them to you.

Here's a little update

I know it has been a long time. I have just been trying to get stuff ready and I just have not had any inspiration to write. Have you been there? Well, today I have had the inspiration...I have to let you know how it is! My back hurts! My belly sticks out about three feet!! I am emotional!! and I have been REALLY grouchy today!!! How is that for inspiration!
My day started off with me reading about Joshua dividing the tribes. I kept saying to myself..."God what am I suppose to get out of this???" But I did read a verse that said, Joshua was 80 years old and tired. God told him he was not done with him. So God still uses us when we are old. OK. For some reason I have been thinking about that all day. I am still waiting on the revelation about that scripture. Moving on, I go to get ready for the day and found myself in a conversation with James. When I went to get my clothes on, I always stop to make my bed. I started on one side and when I went around to the other, I saw the clock!!! It was 7:12 and we usually leave the house at 7:00! I grabbed something to wear and left the bed half done. Ok, so here is my outfit...a pair of extra large knit pants(not maternity), a tank top that was not maternity then a dress over it all. I have worn this lately. I came out and by the time I was in the kitchen, my pants had dropped down under my belly and the tank had jumped up over my belly! With no time to change, I said to myself...It is going to be a long day!!! And to top it belly button has decided to show itself off! Oh, was pregnancy like this the first time around? Then when I go to get my kiddos to take them to the bus, one little kindergarten girl ask me everyday.."Are you going to have a baby?" I guess they can't help but notice since my belly is about eye level to them.
On a good note, I had a baby shower at school. It was great and we got more stuff for our little one! Everyone tells me little girls need lots of clothes. She is starting off with more that she will be able to wear! Thanks everyone.
I don't think I have updated since my shower at church. It was a fairytale shower! Beautiful! I am still amazed at the decorations and the cake. Thank you ladies for all your hard work!
I hope I have not rambled too much, I guess I needed to vent a little! Thanks for listening!
Have a great Day!

I just Laugh!

You know I spoke to the ladies yesterday, well James came home today and told me he heard I did a great job. He said that they thought I was funny!!? I share my deepest secrets and you think I was funny. So I laughed. I was trying to remember...didn't Sarah laugh??? I looked it up and in Genesis 21:6 it says, Sarah said, "God has brought me laughter, and everyone who hears about this will laugh with me," I have been laughing since April! I just look at myself and laugh. I laugh at James because he will be 40 Saturday. He doesn't think he is getting old. I have been telling him, you just wait. OK, I know 40 is not old and in about 10 years, 50 won't be old either!!

I am rambling...if you could have seen me this afternoon, you would have laughed to. I was squatted down trimming my hedges, thinking "this is not a good position to be in right now...and I start laughing and fell over on the bump called my rump! Yes, God has such a sense of humor! And I am so glad I can share it with you. He has brought us great laughter!

What a great day!

Today I had the opportunity to share our story with the Ladies of our church. I have known that I was going to do this for several weeks and have been thinking about it. I pretty much had it all together this week so I could just practice and try to make it flow better. I stayed up till 1:00am this morning trying to say it. I found myself falling to sleep as I was talking and saying the weirdest things so I went to bed!!! My first thought this morning was I have to cut that down. We will be there all day!! I really tried ladies, but there is just so much that God has done! I want everyone to know about it. Thanks for listening, ladies.

I came home this afternoon and crashed! When I woke, I started thinking about all the things I have to get done before this little angel gets here. The next project on the list is her shower. That will be next Sunday. I have been given a list of items to give to the hostesses. They are keeping me busy. I guess that is a good thing because did you happen to look at that ticker thing at the top of the page? Today it said 60 DAYS to go. What happen to the hundred and something days?! The other day I looked at the big belly in the mirror and it hit me...THAT THING HAS TO COME OUT!!!!! Oh Lord, am I really for this?

Saturday Morning

Here I am Saturday morning and my mind is going crazy! I have so much that I NEED to get done and so much that I WANT to get done. I am speaking to the ladies of our church next Sunday and I don't have it all together!!! So today was going to be that day when I got by myself and focus on that. Well, I have washed two loads of clothes, ordered two pairs of shoes (that I hope will fit my fat feet), and I have checked my email. It is 10:00 and my guys will be back soon so you know what that means! As I read over my messages, I came to Ali's update. She is a 5 year old girl who is fighting cancer. Her mom is amazing! She shares her feelings as they journey though this wilderness. This morning she wrote about being busy with all the stuff we put in our lives and when the storms come, we forget that there is peace for the taking if we get in the right boat. I would love for you to read her thoughts and to see what God is doing in their lives...its a miracle! http/

So, even though this little one will be here is less than 10 weeks...OMGoodness! I will try to take one step at a time and not stress over my list of things to get done. God has done too much in my life for me to miss it because of all the STUFF that I THINK are important.

I have a new picture of Ava Grace but my computer crashed and I am using James'. It does not have the scanning software I need on it. She is growing and still has her arms in front of her face! What was neat about these pictures is her fat cheeks! I could not believe it. James still thinks she has a big nose. My friend said she had MY nose....did I call her my friend? LOL. So, honestly, do I have a big nose?? So, what's wrong with a big nose? ...........OK, I'm leaving now, to go meet with God. See ya.


When I saw these, it really hit me. She is a little baby! She is a 3lbs 7 oz. chunk! As Melanie said today, "full figure" females must be a strong trait. (Mel, I just couldn't bring myself to write "fat"!!!) Anyway, not sure if Ava Grace will be wearing new born outfits!
Ok, She is sticking her tongue out. That is not her lip! She also does not like to have her picture taken...that is not yet. I can't wait to kiss on that little arm!


We met with our specialist, Dr. Briery on Thursday. They did a sonogram and all kinds of measurements. First off we wanted to make sure we had a girl, so the tech showed us! James said "whats that" and the tech said "girl parts!" James said "oh, let's move on." Very obvious a girl!! Then the tech tells us she has a big belly and more fluid than normal. Dr. Briery said I probably was on the borderline of gestational diabetes. Baby is 3.2 lbs and is in 95 percentile. So, I am trying to eat better. If any of you have dealt with GD, please give me some suggestions. Doctor is very concerned with having a big baby, so I will be seeing him every two weeks and my regular doctor the other weeks. I mention to Dr. Briery that OB said she would induce a few days early just because I am high risk with seizures. Briery said...about two weeks early!!!! Oh my I was not ready for that. Once I started calculating everything, I realized I was not ready at school. So I have been a little anxious the last two days. I know everything will be fine. I am a last minute person but I have realized I have got to get myself together and get it all done!! Ava Grace will be here real soon.

Oh, sorry for not posting pictures, but the only ones we got were the "parts" pictures. I thought it best not to post on the world wide web!!!

Here we go again!

Well another story of God taking care of things. Thursday I had a doctors appointment. I took my glucose test and fail it!! I had to do the three hour test and chose to do it on Saturday instead of taking another day off from work. Well the three hour test was yuck! I got a little sick at my stomach, so that really made me wonder. I had already searched the internet to see what gestational diabetes was and what it could mean for me and the baby. Needless to say I was starting to worry. I have to admit that I was not "believing God". Then I heard that small voice inside say "Julie, we are not done yet. I am still working things out." Ok God, I gotcha. Well, I passed the test!....I can go back to the bake shoppe!!! Just kidding. That really scared me so I am TRYING to eat a little better. And besides that, while I was shopping the other day, a lady working at the dressing room shouted across the store "well there's someone about to domino!" I turned around and said sheepishly, no. She said "well, are there twins in there?" Walking away I said "no!" She said "well, you sure are big!" I wanted to say "WELL, you sure are rude!" but I just walked away. As I tried to shop, I got madder inside, I felt like everyone was looking at me thinking oh that's who she was talking about! I had to leave. As I drove home I started thinking about all my friends who have been telling me I am looking great for six months. I wonder if they are just trying to make me feel better, because I am really looking like a COW!!! Just wondering!!!

I have another specialist appointment on Thursday so I hope to be able to post pictures. Check back and see!!

What a Day.

Today was meet the teacher. I prayed today that everything that came out of my mouth would bring God glory. I knew several people would ask me about the baby and this was my opportunity to tell how good God is. Well, I did not talk to too many people since I do not have a homeroom class. When I left school, I had this burning desire for a sugar cookie with icing from the bake shoppe!! So I stopped by and got one....a big one! There was a young girl that helped me and two other ladies (whom I was acquainted with) off to the side working. When I turned around they both were looking at me so I broke the ice by saying "yes I am"! They said they were not sure and did not want to say anything. I started telling them our story. One lady started tearing up. They were so sweet. Then the young lady said she would be shocked too if she got pregnant since she and her husband could not have children. I told her that all things were possible with God. She said it would be a miracle! The other lady said "well we are looking at a miracle right now!" My heart was so touched by those ladies in the Bake Shoppe. I just may have to visit them more often!!!

The Bump

Here is a picture of the "the bump". This was taken July 25, we have grown just a little since then. We are doing pretty good except for the heat! It zaps me! And....for the Bake Shoppe cookies with icing!!! Gotta stop that! And the dreams! I have had the craziest and funniest dreams. I wake up every day telling James about them. I sometimes still can't believe this is happening. Well, I started back to school today. Ugh! One good thing about it, I will be so busy, November 25th will be here before I know it! I did get a few things accomplished this summer...the room is painted a soft pink thanks to Garrett and Kristy Morgan and the crib was ordered and put up thanks to Dad and big brother Ian!!

Who's Looking?

I would love to hear from some of you who stop by and read our blog. I want everyone to know what God has done for us and to give encouragement to anyone who needs it.

More of God's Blessings

I was reading through my blog today and saw that I left something out. First off, I did not do this blog just to brag or to let you guys know all of this, but it will be saved for me to reflect back on and also for Ava Grace to see how she came to be.

Here is what I left out. Two weeks ago, right before this last sonogram, the specialist call me with the results of the two part screening I did. This was the screening to show the chances of downs, trisomy 18, and neural tube. The nurse said they were all negative!! She asked me if I wanted to know what the odds were and I said I sure. She said that with downs, our odds were 1 in 10,000! With the trisomy 18, the odds were 1 in 10,000! I believe she said they stop looking for concern at 1 in 300. Then she said for neural tube defect the odds were 1 in 1,000! Here they stop looking at 1 in 100. She told me that that was very good!!! Anyway, just another blessing from God!!

Ava Grace at 19 weeks

I am still learning about this blog stuff so sorry for the small pictures. The first one shows...nothing. meaning it's a girl! The next is a picture of her with her arms up by her head.

It's A Girl

Well, we went to the specialist today and all we were concerned about is what the gender was of the child. Right off, he assured us that it is a girl. Of course we already knew that but we wanted some confirmation! God is so good. But that is not all God showed me today. The doctor said, "Julie, you realize that when you first came to our office, there was a 1 in 48 chance that you would have a child with down syndrome or neural tube defects because of your age and having epilepsy and taking anti-seizure medications. After your first sonogram and blood test, you now are at a 1 in 300 chance." Wow! There are many things that he was concerned about since I take this medication; heart problems, spinal problems and cleft lip. He really studied the heart for a long time. James asked him if he saw a concern and he said no, he was just looking to make sure the valves were opening and closing properly. Everything was working great! He then said that the spinal column looked great too! Then he took a picture of the upper lip! No cleft lip, it was perfect! It hit me that God was taking care of all the little details. When we first met with the doctors they told us all the things that could go bad because of my age and medication. They said I would have this triple screen test to see if I was a possible carrier of all these problems, then we would discuss whether to have an amniocentesis. I really had no doubt that I would have to have this discussion! Well, as of right now there is no need. Even with the odds stacked against us, Everything is looking wonderful! Thank you all for your prayers for Ava Grace.

God Knows My Heart

I can't believe that I am sixteen weeks into my pregnancy. It seems like everyone has one burning question..."Do you know what you are having?" Each time I feel like God is giving me a test. Will I tell them I know it's a girl because God gave me a promise or will I fell the test and say we are not for sure but we think it is a girl? That seems to be the easy way out and I don't look like a crazy women! What if it is not a girl and my belief was wrong. But I know what is in my heart and I believe I let God down each time I do not proclaim the promise he gave to me. I have really struggled with this lately. Today I came across a phrase in my bible study and it has put my struggle to rest: If I err, let me err on the side of belief. God looks on the heart. I'd rather Him see misguided actions from a believing heart than safe and sound actions from an unbelieving heart.
Friends, I believe we are having a girl because almost two years ago God promised me that He had a girl for us. If not, that's fine, God knows I have had a believing heart.

Still Amazed

I have to share with you another God moment. This is what I wrote in my journal on April 2 (7 days before I found out I was expecting).
(Acts 12:13-15) The prayers of the group of believers were answered even as they prayed. But when the answer arrived at the door, they didn't believe it. We should be people of faith who believe that God answers the prayers of those who seek his will. When you pray, believe you'll get an answer. And when the answer comes don't be surprised, be thankful! Believe me, I was shocked after I went back and read this. God answered my prayer while I prayed and then when the answer came, I was surprised. Why not just be thankful!!

It all Begins

I am writing this blog to share with everyone what God has done in our lives. This is just a glimpse of what our God can do.

James and I were married in 1994. We both were 24 years old when God finally placed us in each others life. (That's a whole different blessing!) After we were married three years, we were ready to start adding children to our family. I never thought it would be that hard. After several years of trying and many heartaches, we were finally pregnant at age 29. By the time Ian was born, I was 30 years old. That was not exactly how I had planned it, but I knew God was in control and he had blessed us with a precious boy.

Well, we wanted our children to be close in age so after two years we began to try again. Nothing seemed to happen. I took several rounds of clomid but it did not work. My doctor sent us to a fertility specialist. James and I both seemed uneasy about going but we did anyway. We knew in our hearts that God could do anything and if we were to have another child he would be the one to do it. We stopped going to see the specialist. Years went by and by and by. I just did not understand. It was not easy to forget. We desired to have another child. Why was God not allowing it. Through out a period of eight years, I had three doctors tell me I was in early menopause! What! How could this be? Why? Why us? I never accepted it. So many people would say "just forget it and it would happen" . People, you don't just forget it. I prayed that God would take this burning desire from me if this was not his plan but he never did. I really believed that there was another child for us to love and share our home with. We started looking into adoption. I was interested in adopting from China. I met people who had adopted from China. Was this God confirming our direction!! I was so excited. We began to fill out our application when I saw one of the questions wanted to know if either one of us has a convulsive disorder?? Does that mean epilepsy? Because I did, but it had been almost four years since my last seizure. They were under control. I spoke to the agency and I was devastated when they told me yes, that included epilepsy. They really wanted me to be seizure free for five years. I got my neurologist to right me a letter. It did not matter. China was out. What was God doing?

Fall of 2008 I participated in a bible study called Believing God by Beth Moore. If you have not done this one, I challenge you to. It changed me. I was doing this study why we were going through all the adoption stuff and I just could not figure out what God wanted me to do. I really felt God leading me in a direction then it was pulled out from under me. Each day he spoke to me and helped me understand him better. But I felt like I was crazy most of the time. Would, could God really speak to me like he has?

My Promise
I was frustrated one Saturday because I was feeling crazy. I thought God told me he had a little girl out there for us, I just did not know which way to go to find her. If we adopted from China I was going to name her Ava. Her birth name would relate to our name Ava. It would be a sign that God had orchestrated it all! That Saturday afternoon Ian an I went to Longview just to do get out of the house. I was always looking for another car so I thought we would stop by dealerships. On our way, I was really fussing at God. "What are you calling us to do? Where is this girl you promised me? Where are we to adopt from? Am I just crazy and you have not promised me anything?" (and I was doing all this fussing out loud!) At that moment we stopped at a red light and I looked up and the name of the street was Avalon. I busted out to God, "what is this God, you want me to go look at an Avalon car?" ( and I was sassy!) I looked up at the sign again and I tell you the truth, all I saw was Ava!!! My skin begin to scrawl and I began to cry! "Lord are you giving me a promise?" This is the way I ended that day: "Lord, I don't know who Ava is. She may be our daughter in another country. She may be Ian's wife. She may just be a girl that needs my prayers, but God, I commit to pray for her whoever she is." Wow what a day! It is an awesome feeling to see God work and I believed with all my heart that he worked that day!

How do I keep Believing?

I knew I had to have faith and keep believing God's promise. The following Tuesday night was our Bible study meeting. As I went in, I wanted to share with all the ladies about what had happened, but I kept biting my lip. They are going to think I am crazy and what if it never happens. I remember in one of our lessons, we learned that we have to proclaim God's promises if we are to believe in them. So, that night my mouth flew open and I shared with my those sweet ladies about Ava. Crazy or not, I had to proclaim it. That night there was not a dry eye in the room. They were so excited to one day find out who Ava was! I told them that I did not know if God would give us another child but, if he did it would not be ordinary. It would be a WOW moment and everyone would know that it was all because of HIM!!

During the past year

I have not stopped believing. I have had to step out several times and share my story. Some of those I shared with thought I was crazy and some stood behind me and began to pray for Ava also! I never forgot about adopting. My heart went out to children all over the world that needed a family. Why could I not help them. I kept looking for open doors but they seem to keep closing. Life goes on and on and on. In the fall of 2009, I became convicted about my busy life. I thought, I get up, go to school, come home and take care of my family, run Ian all around town, gripe about my house not being cleaned, gripe about not having enough time, and so on. As I thought about this, I realized, this was normal. Everyone does this and I was right there with them. I was no different. I was ordinary. The Holy Spirit convicted me about this and I began to try to figure out how I could be extraordinary. I wanted God to do something with me. How could I be used for him? During this time, Dr. Tilley preached on this and I told James at lunch that day about what I had been struggling with. I told him I just wanted to step out of my box and do something extraordinary. And before I knew it I said "I want to go to African with the church". He said "well, go." We would be traveling in July. I was so excited to see what God was going to do in my life through serving other people. Later, I mentioned to James, what if while I am there, I find Ava? He said, I guess you will have to bring her home!

God's not late!

Easter day all my family came to our house for lunch. We had a great time. Ian had been sick the week before with a virus and that Sunday I felt like I was coming down with it. I was hoping it was just my nerves from trying to get everything set up for my family! Well the nausea feeling did not go away. Wednesday I decided to do a pregnancy test. I knew it would be negative. For the past eight years it was always negative. Guess what??? It was positive. It said Pregnant! I did not believe it because I had been taking some progesterone since I was going through menopause! It probably caused a false positive. When James came home from youth bible study, I told him that I had done the test. He had to see it. He set down on the side of the tub and started laughing!! I was in shock! We did not get our hopes up because of the progesterone. The next day I called my doctor and told them that I thought I was pregnant and needed to come in. They tried to get me in the next week. I said "no, you do not understand. I will be forty next month, I needed to know now!!" I went in on Friday. I did the urine test but they did not even complete it before they took me in to do a sonogram. The whole time I was in shock. I did not know whether to laugh or cry from excitement. Could this be real? It was real!!! There it was on the screen and then I heard the heartbeat!!! James and I were in SHOCK!! The doctor was in SHOCK!!