Here's a few pics in no particular order. We had a great time with G&G. Murphy was great. The girls loved having everyone around! Will have to do it again sometime soon!!
Murphy snuck in.
Pasty family pic! Almost everyone is looking. I'll take it.
Poor little Ya. Still at the point where she kind of looks like a boy, beautiful as she may be. It would probably help if her mom didn't dress her in black and green.
I remember playing this game with my dad when I was little. The girls loved it!
I think Ya is laughing at Grandpa's belly.
Russ had been taking all the pictures and wanted me to take some of him running around with Noa. Honestly, this is the best one. Not my thing! I understand the principle of thirds and all, but accomplishing that while they were running around is beyond me. I would like to point out that it looks like they're both superimposed on the picture. I think that requires some weird skill. Had to get the flash just right... But, blow the picture up and look at how happy Russ is! Not many could catch that...
We are heading into a series about Prayer at church. I wasn't asking to be "enlightened," so to speak, but the Lord has done a lot in my heart in just a matter of days. I began this year wanting to get back to the discipline of daily time in the Word, which can be difficult since the girls wake up before the sun is up (and who wants to read before you have your coffee?), they are lovely little energy suckers during the day, and when they go down at night, all we feel like doing is laying around and patting ourselves on the back for making it through another day. So reading hasn't really been on my long list of things to do. But, funny thing happened. At the same time I was making this New Year's Resolution, Russ found his Ipod touch that has been lost for over a year. We never used it before, but when we found it I wanted to set up a Diabetes app that would let me chart my sugars better. So I started carrying that thing around. I'm not high tech in the least, so I have no idea what's available to me in that respect, but Russ suggested putting a Bible reading plan on there too. So I started a plan to read through the Bible in a year. Simple as that. I wasn't very hopeful, though, as I've started that many times before and only gotten so far. I have read Genesis about 95 times and then somehow, I trail off after that. Anyway, at this point, I'm still motivated. Maybe because it has only been 2 weeks. Maybe because I like Genesis. I don't know. I like to think it is more than that though. You see, the Word of God is living and active (Hebrews 4:12), and when we read it, we spend time with Him and he changes us. I have become addicted to His presence again. The more He helps me discipline myself, the more it becomes a delight rather than a chance to check off the box. (Side note:this book (I couldn't put it down) helped tweek my perspective quite a bit too. I would recommend it to everyone!)
I have started praying again. Not that I was totally void of it before, but I would easily get distracted, and easily look to myself for the answers. News Flash: I don't have the answers! Neither do you. We were created to be totally, exclusively, perfectly dependent upon our Creator and He loves the chance to get involved in our messy lives.
So, as any self-centered person would do, I started praying for the things that directly affect each and every day. I started praying for Ruthie. She is a precious little girl who is every bit of two years old, and most days she dominates the environment. I can't find enough things for her to do! She follows me around constantly, usually whining, screaming, or crying. If you haven't experienced that, it can get quite old, and it is hard to do anything besides pacify her. Very annoying. Anyway, back to the point. I started praying for her. I prayed for the other girls too, but it seems that she is at a stage where she just needs a little extra prayer. So within a day, I noticed a difference. I prayed for specific things. One of the worst things (among many) is that she is very attached to Russ right now and only wants him to do things for her, like getting her out of her crib when she wakes up from her nap. Since he works, this is my job, but she would have none of it. Every day, she would throw a fit for about forty five minutes if I was the one to get her up. So, I asked the Lord to help specifically with the nap time! The next day, instead of crying from her room when she woke up, she said, "Daddy, I'm up!" When I went in to get her, she just wanted to be hugged and loved on by me - not another mention of Daddy. The other girls were still asleep and we just hung out on the couch for a while, laughing and having fun. She looked around the room and said she wanted to clean up (umm... this has never happened) and proceeded to pick up every toy that was lying around and put them back in their basket. Seems like a small prayer, doesn't it? Seems like an insignificant little thing to somebody on the outside, but I knew that my Creator heard my cry. After months of a daily tantrum that strained my relationship with her and stole my energy for the day, it changed overnight! More importantly, I knew I was a child of God. I knew my voice mattered to Him. I knew he longed to come down to help me, even with the smallest things.
He also answers large prayers. He is big enough to do so. On Monday, we found out that Nana is cancer free! The prayer that we have been praying for months was heard! Not to say that it always plays out as we want it to, but in this case it did! We are overjoyed. He is a Healing God! He heard our little cries for help! He heard our very large requests! Honestly, they were only large to us. He easily holds the world in His hands!
So, I start a new journey this year of seeking God again. He knows that we are easily distracted, easily deceived, and very selfish. We like to pat ourselves on the back when we succeed rather than remembering He graces us with even the breath in our lungs. I want to remember that. I want to remember to thank Him for that and much more this year.
because Christmas is over. :( This is what Noa says every time we get in the car (speaking of the yard decorations people have up, you know, the nativity scenes, the big Santas and whatever else). So ironically, I'm finally able to post some Christmas pics because Christmas is over! Here they are in no order.... (who has time for order anymore?)
Overjoyed on Christmas morning!
Awake for 25 seconds and already eating candy...
Not so great. Ya is crazy. Thanks for trying, Noa.
Hmmm. Still strugglin'.
A little better? I don't know. Impossible task.
Ruthie wanted "Gammy" to see her "Gammy jacket" (that my mom bought for each of the girls).
And I'll leave you with a cute little bum. Is this the sweetest thing you've ever seen, or what?