"Let all that I am praise the LORD; may I never forget the good things he does for me."

Sunday, December 18, 2016

Christmas story!

It was so cold today, -10, we didn't go to Church this morning. It would not be good to be driving to Church in this weather with two little children, and end up getting a flat tire or something. We talked to my brother in law Tamene over video chat, and he said it was 104 degrees there! In Ethiopia where he is right now. And it was night where he was. So crazy the different temperatures.

Since we didn't go to Church this morning, we had Sunday school here. I read and told Jonathan the Christmas story from the book of Matthew. We were sitting on the floor in his bedroom and I was telling him about how Joseph and Mary and baby Jesus had to go to Egypt. I tried to dramatize the story a bit to make it very interesting and help him understand. Perhaps I dramatized it a bit too much? Jonathan jumped up and opened his dresser drawers and began grabbing all of  his clothes and bringing them out to the living room. He was all ready to get in the car and go to Egypt. He is so funny. But the dramatization made the story more real to me, as well.

To imagine my husband waking up and saying, an Angel came and warned me in a dream last night, we have to get out of here, and basically grabbing some clothes and getting in the car and leaving because we were scared for our child's life?

The Christmas story is so amazing, exciting, and a wonderful thing to celebrate. We don't celebrate Christmas only because it is an exciting story, however, we celebrate because it is when Emmanuel (Jesus) was born. Emmanuel--God with us. Imagine how God was born as a baby, possibly outside, his only bed a feed box with some hay for a mattress. Wrapped in a simple cloth, no diapers--no doctors and nurses, no warm and soapy bath. Mary and Joseph were not wealthy or powerful people. But this, too me, just proves again how loving God is. He came to suffer with us and know our trials. He is not some far off God who does not understand what we go through, but he knows our pain, and our joys. In the hardest times of my life, I can say that I have known God's presence with me. Emmanuel. God with us.

The true story of Christmas can change our lives forever. So much better than Santa Claus.

Friday, December 2, 2016

embarrassing moment :)

My poor husband. He must think that God's purpose for me in his life is to torment him. haha! But I don't do it on purpose . . . thankfully, my husband has a sense of humor and can laugh about things a bit.

Last week, before Thanksgiving, Tes sent me to get some toothpaste. He told me to get a small tube, not the travel size but the next size up, so that it would fit nicely in our toothbrush/toothpaste holder next to the sink. I went to the store and I was in a hurry, so I quickly scanned the aisle for what appeared to be the right size toothpaste. I didn't open the package because I didn't want to damage it in case I didn't buy it then. I purchased it and left it unopened on the bathroom counter. Later, when Tes went to brush his teeth, he opened the package and pulled out a mammoth-sized tube of toothpaste! I don't think we've ever purchased such a large tube. He was like, "What is this?!" I was like, "well, that was all I saw, sorry."

The next week we were picking up groceries and he headed for the toothpaste aisle. Somehow, he spotted the smaller tubes of toothpaste. He was wondering why I didn't purchase one of those, so I was explaining that they must not have been there when I was shopping, because I didn't see them. I said, "maybe they were all out? It was Thanksgiving and there were a lot of people shopping and the aisle was pretty crowded." Tes said, "So people were buying all the toothpaste because of Thanksgiving?"

I had to admit it was just me overlooking the smaller tubes . . . somehow. I promise I didn't do it on purpose to irk him! Anyhow, it will be a while before we need to buy toothpaste again. That mammoth tube will last a while.

I don't do these things intentionally, but somehow they happen. For example, I have been applying for jobs lately, and for one position, I sent them the cover letter I had written for a different place. I hadn't even written a cover letter for the position/place I was currently applying for, but when I was applying I was like "I may as well attach my cover letter," not being intelligent enough to remember that a cover letter for a different place wasn't going to help my chances. Right after I attached it, I realized what I had done, but it was too late to get it back. They must have been pretty desperate, because they still contacted me for an interview. They did ask me if I had accepted a position at the other place that I mentioned in my cover letter! haha! Well, we scheduled a phone interview, but my sister ended up visiting that day and we took the kids to the park and I left my phone in the car and completely forgot about the interview. I was so humiliated. Hannah told me I should call the guy back so I did. As I said, they must have been pretty desperate, because they did end up calling me again and asking me if I was still interested in the position, after multiple trespasses! (I didn't go forward with the position because I didn't think it would work very well right now for me with my children.)

I applied for another job, and the day after my phone interview with them, Tes woke up to a message on his phone. They had somehow contacted him for a reference for me. Of course, they weren't really trying to reach him, but my reference (No, I did not list my husband as a reference! Although he could probably give a very accurate picture of my character qualities and flaws!) Somehow, I listed his phone number instead of my reference's! I was so embarrassed, and Tes was laughing at me. I emailed them with the correct number for my reference, but I didn't dare tell them that I had given them my husband's phone number--too humiliating! I just said I might have given them an incorrect phone number and gave them the right one.

So, somehow I keep humiliating myself, and if it isn't that, I'm doing things to provoke my husband, but not with that intent! I guess it is just my nature . . .

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Little children come to Jesus

Jonathan recently memorized Matthew 19:14, and we have discussed the story and read it straight from the passage several times. Today, while I was cooking lunch, Jonathan was singing "Jesus loves the little children" in the other room. I went over there to talk to him, and Jonathan told me "Jesus put hand on Jonathan head," patting his head. I told him, "Yes, Jesus loves the little children, and he loves you, and he put his hands on the children and blessed them, didn't he?"

After agreeing with me and talking about it some more, Jonathan ran into his bedroom and shouted loudly, "Jesus said, come please! Mommy, say come please!" He wanted me to call him so he could practice coming . . . to Jesus, I think. :) It was cute, and I called him, and then I got to talk to him a little more seriously about how we can come to Jesus and how he does want little children to come to him. Cute and so sweet.

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

encouragement :)

If the Son therefore shall make you free, you shall be free indeed.
John 8:36

Dear brothers and sisters, we are not just saved from Hell, not just saved from the fear of death, but we are saved from sin. We DO NOT have to be slaves to sin any longer. Jesus Christ gave his life on the cross to redeem us--to purchase us. Sin is no longer our master. Christ is our Master and it is Him we serve.
For so long in my life, even after I was a Christian, I still served the flesh--my own desires. But Christ gives us power over the flesh. He has given us His Spirit and we can do away with our old sinful nature and be filled with His power over sin. 
The blood of Christ has power over sin. No matter how defeated of a life we have lived, He has the power to make us into a truly new Creation.
It is my strong desire and prayer that as Christians, we begin to live through the Spirit, and demonstrate the fruits of the Spirit in our lives.
Self Control

While we will not be perfected until we see the Lord, we can begin to reveal Christ in our lives NOW. He is God. He is far more powerful than any addictions, desires, habits that we may have. If He has made us free, we shall be truly free.

Monday, November 7, 2016


He started out with his feet by the piano part and ended up stuck like this :)

Finally got those pictures I wanted.

It has been such a beautiful beginning to November.

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Other things we've been up to

My little stinker in a suit. Kind of like putting him in an angel costume. He is just as naughty in a suit as he is in anything else. Kinda cute, but so frustrating, when this little guy in a suit is walking away from you when you're calling him to come back. Man.

Last week, Tes had to travel for work, and we stayed in his hotel with him for a few days and had a nice time. ;) 

We also celebrated Tes' birthday with my family by having a picnic in the park. I made blueberry cheesecake (my Grandma's recipe) for his birthday cake. It turned out really well.

My name is Daniel

I finished school last week. For my final project, I designed a simulation experience for 2 year nursing students with a Hypertensive patient who begins to experience a stroke. I presented the simulation to nursing faculty at the community college I partnered with, as well as submitted a video submission to my school. Finally, I wrote my last paper, a 53 page paper discussing the project and research related to the project. 

So I am finally done! I have been "enjoying" my kids. :) 

Jonathan has been swinging in Christian's swing lately. Haha! But he is a little big for it. Just a couple of pounds over the limit. So I make him get out if he isn't sitting still in it.

Christian doesn't really care for the swing so much. He prefers to be held (of course,) so I have him in a carrier a lot while I am cooking or doing dishes.

I took the kids to the park this morning and then I was sad I hadn't brought my camera, because it was a beautiful day and there were golden maple leaves all over the ground--it would have been perfect for pictures. So I got them on the couch later, but they were both tired and Christian started crying. Right after the pics he went down for a nap.

Jonathan was supposed to nap, too, after lunch, but I put him to bed 4 times and he never did stay there. The last time, he came out of his bedroom wearing a leopard print headband on his head, pointed to himself, and said, "My name is Daniel, Mommy. My name is Daniel." So he helped me pick up toys and clean the living room, but he wanted to be called Daniel the whole time. 

I think that might be because last week in Children's Church, they told the story of Daniel in the Lion's den. Jonathan likes Lions--one of his nick names is Ambassa, which means Lion in Amharic. That is his nick name from Ababa. It was a neat lesson because they also took pics of the kids and then glued paper lion manes on the pictures! Such a cute idea. 

We've been trying several new churches since we moved to a new city. I think this one (a conservative Baptist church) will probably be the one we go to. When it comes down to choosing a church, Tes and I feel most comfortable raising our kids in a conservative environment just like how we were both raised. I guess when you start thinking about what behaviors and values you want your children to have, this is what most closely matched our hopes for our children. So as our children grow, learn, and make friends, I hope this is a good environment that encourages them to be respectful, honorable young men who have a fear of the Lord.

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

My boys at the park

This is my life right now!

I cannot believe how incredibly blessed I am.

I have two beautiful boys.

They are so worth it :)

They are fun, too!

Jonathan and Christian photo remake

This is Jonathan!

This one is Christian

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

stand fast in the faith of Christ

 May God bless you. We are expected to run this race for a time, so we must stand firm in Christ, knowing that our work is not wasted. The gospel of Christ is our goal.

I Corinthians 15:58
Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.

I Corinthians 16:13
Watch, stand fast in the faith, be brave, be strong.

Hebrews 12: 1-2
Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, Looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

1 Peter 1: 8-9
Be sober, be vigilant ; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world.

It is Jesus Christ who is the living water. Whoever drinks from him will never thirst again. Lay aside  every weight. The world cannot, cannot satisfy.

Friday, August 12, 2016

Newborn pictures

 I ran across these pictures from St. Patrick's day and it made me sad . . . how much Jonathan has grown up since then!

 These are our newborn pictures:

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

The baby post

This is him! Christian.

He was born at 10:43 pm at night and weighed 7lbs 13.2 oz and was 20.5 inches long. Unbelievably he was born "natural" (no epidural or intrathecal), but really only because I wanted one too late and my midwife refused--I was 9 cm when she was able to check me to see if I could get one. Oh well. I had wanted to have a baby "naturally" because I was curious as to how bad it feels to deliver that way . . . now I know. But I already can't really remember how bad it felt so I guess it is true about forgetting that part. And as far as a delivery goes, it went super well, even though from my perspective it was a nightmare. I think labor lasted for 10 hours altogether, because it didn't really start until 1 or 2 in the afternoon although my water broke in the early morning, and then it got more intense around 5 pm. The contractions never got regular--I would have two or three or so in a row and then several minutes of nothing and then a bunch in a row again. My sister was there and she and Tes helped me a lot! I wouldn't let them stop pushing on my back. My sister gave me ice chips with mango drink powder on them in between contractions and that was nice.

He is a sweet little baby and I did lots of skin to skin with him the first couple of days and already feel "bonded" which is so nice because I think it took a little longer with Jonathan. Really everything has gone a lot better than it did last time, with recovery and breastfeeding. Christian seems very content and does not cry a whole lot. He's so tiny and cuddly and sweet. I'm in love. :)

before baby came . . .

Here are some pictures before the baby came :) Tes and I went to Duluth by ourselves a couple of weeks ago and it was really nice to get away by ourselves. On the way home we got Jonathan back from my parents and stopped and got sweet corn and Jonathan enjoyed eating it in the car. 

 This is Jonathan dressing in a costume ;)

Monday, July 11, 2016

pregnancy pictures and fourth of July

We had a very nice, relaxing, and super hot 4th. 

Tes decided to teach Yoni how to get the ducks to come to you instead of run away. It was hilarious to watch.

Yesterday, Tes took some pregnancy pictures of me before church. Only 4 more weeks to go! I am so ready . . . I think. 

It was fun to compare these pictures with ones from when I was pregnant with Yoni. And just comparing the two pregnancies in general. They say no two pregnancies are the same, but I really was still kind of surprised. Last time I had some morning sickness, at least some nausea, and this time I had zero. I kept thinking it was going to come and it never did. And then with Jonathan, food just tasted so good. I obsessed over food. And with this one, its "I guess I probably should eat since I'm hungry." Except for ice cream sandwiches which I would eat whether or not I am hungry!
I just hope that labor could be different too. I had terrible long back labor with Jonathan so I would love it if this time it was shorter and not so painful. :) But  the actual delivery was fine with him so I would take that. 
Anyway, a healthy baby and safety is all that really matters when it is all said and done.