Tuesday, February 14

:: An Announcement ::

Parrish had an extra-special Valentine's Day this year...today he learned he is going to be a big brother again! That's right...we're pregnant. 13 weeks along and due August 21st! It's been a long and bumpy road getting here. We've suffered with fertility issues over the last year as well as doubts about the health of this pregnancy, but thankfully, it looks like this little one is doing great and we couldn't be more thankful.

Parrish got up this morning and we made the promised heart-shaped pancakes (which we delivered to dad in bed bc he has the flu!), then we gave Parrish a Valentine's gift of a "big brother" shirt and a homemade felt fortune cookie (easy tutorial on the Martha Stewart website here) with a sonogram picture of his new little brother or sister inside. I think he was a little shocked (pleasantly I think) but shocked none the less. I really thought he might have an idea of what was coming just from overhearing conversations over the last few weeks, but I think he was totally surprised. Here's a video of his very comical reaction to the news. (I especially love the look on his face when I ask him if he's going to help me change diapers!)

Part 1

Part 2

We have only told a few people about this pregnancy because we didn't want to tell Parrish until we were as certain (as anyone can be) that the pregnancy was going to be viable. So, it just didn't feel right to announce it to everyone until he knew. That said...now he knows....so if I've told you a fib over the last month about not being pregnant...please forgive me and just kidding! I really AM pregnant! Ha Ha!

With the worries about this pregnancy, I have been thinking a lot about trusting in Jesus, and it just so happens that a few of our sermons lately have been about trusting and knowing Jesus. Our music director told us the tragic story of the author of the hymn, "Tis So Sweet to Trust in Jesus." In a nutshell, as a very young woman she witnessed her husband drown in the ocean as he was trying to save a drowning child. She then went on to work in the missions field and to write the words to this hymn that has comforted so many...all out of her excruciating pain.

Our pastor Randy went on to tell us this truth (one that none of us really likes to hear):
"Our happiness this side of heaven is not the most important thing to God."
I am thankful for a pastor who teaches us the hard truths, even when we don't want to hear it. God's main goal for our lives is to grow our faith, not that our every moment is filled with joy. Sometimes growing our faith means allowing some pretty unbearable things to happen to us. Randy then went on to quote A.W. Tozer..."It is doubtful whether God can use (bless) a man greatly, until first he wounds him deeply." Wow. I just sat there and let that sink in. It's true, but that doesn't mean I like it. I'd much rather skip the wounded deeply part. And I don't know exactly how he wants to use us or IF the reason we experienced something so awful was to grow our faith. But through my tested faith I, like the hymn says, have learned to simply trust him by faith and not by sight or experiences (at least most of the time!). It's easy to trust him when everything is going our way, but I am thankful for the foundation of faith he laid in me BEFORE we lost Olivia so that when things most definitely are not going our way, I can still trust him. I printed this scripture from etsy today and framed it for Cannon for Valentine's Day. It couldn't be more appropriate for us:

So we are looking forward to the future and our new little one and the joy he or she will bring to our family. This baby is a reinvestment in life and we are trusting Jesus with the details.

  1. ’Tis so sweet to trust in Jesus,
  • Just to take Him at His Word;
  • Just to rest upon His promise,
  • And to know, “Thus saith the Lord!”
      • Refrain:
      • Jesus, Jesus, how I trust Him!
      • How I’ve proved Him o’er and o’er;
      • Jesus, Jesus, precious Jesus!
      • Oh, for grace to trust Him more!
  • Oh, how sweet to trust in Jesus,
  • Just to trust His cleansing blood;
  • And in simple faith to plunge me
  • ’Neath the healing, cleansing flood!
  • Yes, ’tis sweet to trust in Jesus,
  • Just from sin and self to cease;
  • Just from Jesus simply taking
  • Life and rest, and joy and peace.
  • I’m so glad I learned to trust Thee,
  • Precious Jesus, Savior, Friend;
  • And I know that Thou art with me,
  • Wilt be with me to the end.

  • Louisa M.R. Stead, 1882
  • Friday, February 3

    :: Valentines Crafts & Ava Sammy Prickett ::

    I've been away from blogland for a while, so there's lots to catch you up on in our world. We are so excited to have provided a mother's day out scholarship through the Olivia Charles Foundation to a little girl from Africa whose parents moved to America for her dad to attend seminary. This scholarship will not only be great for her socially as she adapts to life here in the U.S., but will also help her with her English language skills as she prepares to enter Kindergarten here next year. We are so thankful to our amazing church for finding space for her in one of the 4-year-old classrooms mid-school year. Most of you moms know this is nearly unheard of! Amy, my friend who let me know of their need, says the family is continually in awe of how God is providing for them during this time in their lives. So thank you for all of the support you show for our sweet Olivia's foundation. Many of you have given and continue to give monetarily, you've made us the beneficiaries of countless sales events you have hosted, you've prayed for us, you've given of your time and talents to help us, and we are so thankful. It is because of the help and support of friends and family that Olivia's light is still shining bright! We promise to be good stewards of your gifts. And to help us do that, our website - oliviacharlesantiques.com - is almost live. From this site you'll be able to shop our unique reclaimed furniture and accessories for our cause, learn more about the foundation and how to support it, and let us know of someone you know who has a need for a prayer pager, burial assistance, or mother's day out scholarship.
    On Parrish's birthday he talked us into adoptiong a new outdoor kitty. So, we proudly introduce Ava Sammy Prickett. The name has actually changed quite a few times. First it was Fia (the name the humane society had given her), then it was Fiona (my choice), then Ava (we think after a little girl in Parrish's preschool class that he has a secret crush on, but don't tell him I told you that bc he fervently denies it), then Sammy (after Parrish's first kitty that passed away), then back to Ava with Sammy bumped down a notch to the middle name. It's been quite a process as you can see. For the first few weeks Ava lived on our screened porch so she could figure out that this was her home. After 2 weeks we let her out to explore the neighborhood and she didn't come back for 3 DAYS! Cannon and I sent an email to the neighborhood and there was only one sighting. We combed the woods and the porches and yards of our neighbors and still no Ava. Then Monday, by the grace of God, Ava reappeared on our back porch and hasn't ventured far since, even though we've left the screen door open. We are very glad that she is sticking closer to home. At least now she has a collar with our info printed on it. When she was out before the other collar had fallen off, adding to our worry that she might not return.

    The spring-like weather lately has it feeling like anything but Valentine's Day, but it really is February and almost Valentine's Day, so Parrish and I decided to put together his class treats. I got this idea from-you guessed it…Pinterest! You will need plastic sand shovels (I bought these on ebay), "I dig you!" stickers or tags, treat bags, ribbon and of course, treats.
    Parrish helped by sticking the stickers onto the front of the bags. (I found the cute heart bags at World Market)
    Then I held the bags open while he used the shovels to scoop the treats and tied the whole thing up with some cute stripped ribbon.
    I think they turned out pretty cute (almost as cute as that grin!)

    And because we had Valentine's fever that day we also picked up some red burlap at Hobby Lobby and I made "X" and "O" door hangers. Well, technically I made the door hangers and Parrish cut scraps of burlap, glued hole punch dots to craft paper and stamped with every stamp and stamp pad in our arsenal while I worked. This was such an easy and fast project and did I mention cheap? The whole project cost less than $10. All it required was a sewing machine, 2 yards of burlap, batting, and ribbon. I traced the letter free-hand onto the burlap, cut out two of each (for a front and back side), stitched them together leaving an opening for stuffing with batting and for the hanging ribbons at the top and voila! Instant Valentine's Day decor. The best part for me though was Parrish saying, "Mommy? You're a great artist." I mean, really? I melted. How sweet was that?
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