Saturday, December 20, 2008

New Job(s)

Well, when God closes a door, He opens a window. In a little less than a month Paul and I and the kids will be moving into a home in Grabill, IN to work full time at Gateway Woods. This has been something that we have wanted to do for awhile but never knew when the time would be right (i.e. Paul had a decent job, we have a mortgage, we like where we are at...) But I guess God was tired of our excuses and decided to remove some of them : ) There 'happened' to be an opening for alternate houseparents at Gateway so we interviewed for the position. We start our training on January 12 and begin working on campus the first of February. We are little sad to change the life we have been used to but very excited to be used of God in this capacity. When God closes a door....

For those of you not familiar with the ministry of Gateway Woods, check out their website: www.gatewaywoods.org

Monday, December 15, 2008

Suvar Christmas







This past weekend we celebrated Christmas with Paul's family. We stayed overnight with his mom and dad and stayed up late playing games. We of course had the traditional villia dinner which of course was delicious. We also managed to get a group photo of the fam with all 3 kids being happy (or at least not crying). As a gift I received 2 matching Christmas trees. I want to put them on either side of my front door but since we didn't get a tree this year, I set one up inside (Thank you, Becky!)

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Latest stats




Owen and Hannah went to the doctor yesterday for their (late) 2 year and 6 month appointments. Owen is weighing in at 31 lb13 oz and Hannah is a hefty 19 lbs 6 oz (both of them are in the 95 percentile : )




In case the pictures need a little explanation: Owen loves to roll Hannah around on the floor, and surprisingly she loves it too??? And the other shot is of Owen using the head of a broken golf club to "drill" holes in the bookcase. He saw his uncles, grandpa, and daddy using a drill over the weekend and I think the image stuck with him : ) He is getting an imagination and I love it.

And a side note, little Reid went in for surgery this morning to repair a hernia - please pray for healing for Reid and patience for Chet and Amanda.

Monday, December 1, 2008

A reason to be thankful...







In case you don't already know, Paul lost his job from ITT a week before Thanksgiving. It has been a different last week I must say, and the Holidays are taking on a different light for sure. Surprisingly I am not freaking out (yet). I have sat down and cried, but then got up and moved on. : ) A few people have made the comment that we might have to think a little harder of something to be thankful for (given the current circumstances) but I beg to differ:



I am thankful that we have 2 healthy children



I am thankful for the warm home we still have



I am thankful that our cupboards are full of food and we really don't need to shop for awhile (I'm going to get creative with beans : )



I am thankful that I get to have Paul home with me for a little bit during this cold weather and during the cozy Christmas season



I am thankful that God has opened up new opportunities for Paul to possibly work elsewhere or even in a different line of work



Most of all, I am thankful that God was and is in control and that His Son still saves






Unfortunately, we did not get to spend any time with my family in Illinois during Thanksgiving as previously planned, which really bummed me out. Hopefully we will be able to make it at Christmas. But we did have a great time with the Suvar's over the holiday weekend. We spent Turkey Day with Paul's uncle, aunt, and cousins and then stayed the next two nights with Paul's brother Ben and his wife. We of course had endless amounts of food and a few deals were found on Black Friday. As you can see from the pictures, Alayna just keeps growing, Hannah is now sitting on her own, and Owen continues to love on Hannah.
I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving and have something as wonderful as I do to be thankful for.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Reid update


So, I realized this week that after Reid made it home, my updates on him have dropped off. Sorry about that : ) This week I took 3 month pictures for Amanda of the little guy. He is now over 8 lbs, probably over 9 by now at the rate that he is growing, and continuing to develop as he should. He is officially off the heart monitor as of a couple weeks ago and he is both nursing and still taking a bottle. He's still such a little peanut, but big compared to where he started. I will need to get a few more details from Amanda as far as anything more specific, but as far as from an aunt perspective - he's doing great! : )

Saturday, November 1, 2008

6 months old


I'm a week late, but Hannah is now 6 months old - I haven't made it to the doctor yet for her checkup but when I do, her stats will be posted : ) Hannah is teething right now and she is having a rough go of it (and so am I) She was sleeping through the night but now is waking up 1-2 times a night and just wants to be rocked and

held. So sweet, but maybe not at 4 AM. So we keep plugging her with Tylenol and praying for those teeth to come through soon. She's getting up on her hands and knees, but no crawling yet, which is fine with me. Once she is, there is one more thing I'll have to keep track of : ) Hannah is eating pear sauce (go figure), squash, and peas. She gags on the peas, but with a little persuasion (pear sauce) she gets it down. She is loving Owen and just watches him and giggles.

And on a totally different topic - It is November 1st and I have clothes hanging on the line -an absolute beautiful day! Thank you, Lord!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Just a side note

Ever since Hannah was born I have been trying to some up with a decent name for my blog. I wanted something short and sweet but still got my central point across. I finally settled on 'Raising Royalty' with a short description of it. It stems from how there is so much out there about little girls being princesses and all about me, me, me. I thought it could be turned around for the good - we can all be sons and daughters of the King - we can all be a princess or prince - but it's not about us, it's about Him.

What do you think?

Buckeye's little cheering section




For those of you who don't know, Ohio State is playing Penn State tonight in what is a 'pretty big game.' I don't know a whole lot, I'm just the wife of a big OSU fan, so that makes me sort of a fan : ) But I thought I would dress our children up in the OSU clothes we had in the closet. Apparently Elmo is a big fan of Ohio, too, since he appears on both shirts (who knew? : ) Now for all of you who now feel sorry for our children because they are wearing 'trash' or whatever term you would tack onto the Buckeye name - ha, ha, I'm just waiting for the comments to come - from certain family members who are Illini or Wolverine fans. I don't know enough to talk trash so I'll just stay silent.
At least I know the Suvar side of the family will be in support of our children's clothes (I don't think there is any other team but the Buckeyes with the Suvar's...)

Unfortunately, the game does not start until 8PM which is Owen and Hannah's bedtime. So, they will have to cheer for the Buckeyes from their beds...
Oh, and a side note, when I went to get Owen up this morning he held up that Brutus doll seen in the picture and declared "Brutus!" and he can also locate Ohio in our book of states and he identified the word Ohio on a sweatshirt. We are so proud... : )

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Something I've learned

Selfishness and impatience go hand in hand. My children have made me realize this. I've already known that I can be a selfish person (wanting time for myself, wanting things done my way) but since Hannah has been born I have been increasingly aware of it and it disgusts me.

I have found that when I am most impatient with the kids and start to raise my voice and can feel my blood pressure rise, is when I am being selfish. So I have started to check myself when I feel myself losing my cool. Why am I getting so impatient? Most answers are: I want to get something done and Owen won't let me. I want to be doing something else and instead I am walking around for 45 minutes (or more) holding a screaming Hannah. Most of the time the realization of this makes my impatience decrease (most of the time). It's a reminder to act toward my children the way God acts toward me. I am sure there are many times God would like me to do it His way and in His time but thankfully He doesn't get as impatient as I do.

Any thoughts? Am I the only one out there with this correlation in her life?

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Another birthday party




This past weekend we were with Paul's family to celebrate Owen's birthday. Becky did an excellent job on the cake - her train was 3-D versus my little 2-D version : ) We got to see baby Alayna again and took a picture of the three cousins together. Heehaw, Owa, and Yayna (the pronunciations by Owen) And I just had to put another picture of our kiddos cuddled in the stroller together - so cute! : )

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

The morning paper and a hair cut




I snapped this picture of Owen this morning after he was done eating his breakfast. I was changing Hannah and noticed Owen was real quiet. Well, he had reached over to the table and grabbed the newspaper and was flipping through it. It was so cute I had to take a picture. He had such a serious look on his face, like he really was reading the morning headlines.


This evening we cut Owen's hair for the first time. We strapped him in the booster seat and Paul distracted his with reading some books. After we saved a snip for his baby book, I tried my best with the scissors. Owen did really well, didn't fuss at all. He still has some curls, they are just a little more tamed. Here is a before and after shot.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Columbus Day Weekend




So the Rassi's were out for their annual Columbus Day Weekend get together. We celebrated Owen's birthday on Saturday with them. I made a chocolate cake for Owen and attempted to put a train on it - Owen did call it a train so I must have made it somewhat recognizable : ) Mary and Greg were also out with their son Max, who is just 2 days older than Hannah. We tried laying them beside each other for a picture. We didn't get too much because Max is a mover! I have several shots of Max getting in front of the camera and Hannah just frowning at him. Owen had a great time with so many people to entertain him, and of course all the gifts he got! To the Rassi's that didn't make it - you were missed! (and put it on your calendars for next year : )

Friday, October 10, 2008

2 years old






Owen's birthday is on Sunday - I cannot believe that it has been 2 years already! Yesterday I made an attempt at taking his 2 year pictures. Here are a few that made the final cut. I was taking the pictures underneath some trees with one being an apple tree, and, well, Owen just had to have one : )

Random stuff





For those of you who don't know U.S. 24 runs right through Antwerp and right now they are working on building a 4-lane US 24 just south of town. It will be about a mile to a mile and a half from us. Right now you can walk right up onto the overpass and walk up and down the on/off ramps. One evening we walked the kids up there to take some pictures. We figured by the time they are old enough to remember, it will be done (plan is 2012). It was kinda fun walking in a place where you know one day will be traffic.

And earlier this summer we bought a used jogging stroller off of eBay (very used) so that I could try to get back into jogging again. This has been a pipe dream. Finally this week Hannah actually sat in the thing and we have made it farther than the front yard without her screaming. Maybe next year, if Owen still fits in it : )

OK, the picture of the tree...there were about 30 or so turkey buzzards sitting in this tree in our back year. It was very eerie. I went outside to take this picture and noticed a few sitting on our roof, too. I startled them and they were flying around our house in the big circle they do when looking for something dead. Very strange. Thankfully, they haven't been back....

OK, and the final picture I just wanted to show how much Hannah gets a kick out of Owen. She will laugh and smile at him when he is doing the littlest things. You can see her excitement in this picture of Owen just giving her some attention. Hannah hates having her face/nose wiped, but if Owen goes over with a Kleenex and wipes her nose, she starts smiling and laughing. I don't know, but it's nice that they are getting along, for now....

Monday, October 6, 2008

James has a good point...

I actually got something out of a church sermon! Now, that may sound bad, but sitting with Owen every Sunday, I would say it's an accomplishment. Yesterday we read from James and the part that stood out to me was Chapter 4 verses 13-15:
Listen up, you that say, Today or tomorrow we will go into such a city, and continue there a year, and buy and sell, and get gain:Whereas you don't know not what tomorrow will bring. For what is your life? It is even a vapor, that appears for a little time, and then vanishes away. Instead you should say, If the Lord will, we shall live, and do this, or that. (paraphrase)
The minister went on to day that we need to make sure we leave room for God's sovereignty. For me, I am a planner and organizer. And where this struck a cord is with our finances. Paul and I keep a budget and we have plans as far as when we will make a big purchase or pay something off, or save up so much. But I need to step back and stop relying on ourselves to make everything work out and trust God and his sovereignty with those things in my life. Not to have everything so in control and in a row that I leave God out of it. I say "God's will be done" but do I really mean it. Is there anything that you have so planned out that you have pushed God to the side of the matter, instead of keeping Him at the center?

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Alayna Grace

Well, Paul and I took the road trip to Columbus last night (left at 3:30, home at midnight) to see Ben, Jaime, and Baby Alayna. All are doing well and baby is healthy. Alayna was alert the whole time we were there, just cuddled in our arms with her eyes wide open. So, far she has been a mellow baby for them (for the first 13 hours at least). She also has tons of black hair. Very cute, very sweet.

Monday, September 29, 2008

I'm an Aunt (again)

Paul's brother Ben and his wife Jaime had a baby this morning in Columbus, Ohio. They had a litle girl: her name is Alayna Grace. She is 8 lbs 2 oz and 20 inches long. Sounds like eveything was textbook and mom and baby are healthy. Paul and I are driving down tonight to see them so hopefully I will be posting pictures tomorrow. Now I have a nephew and a niece : )

Friday, September 26, 2008

5 months


Just had to put in the stats on Hannah, now that she has hit the 5 month mark. According to the baby scale at Amanda's, Hannah weighs in at 16 lb 1 oz - around the 80 percentile for weight : ) She is eating rice cereal and has recently started on yellow squash (which she seems to really like! : ) The spitting up has slowed some, but she will still have those times that you yell 'whoa! where's the spit rag!' : ) I just say she pukes on the ones she loves : )

Cousins




I went with the 2 kids the other day to visit Amanda and Reid at their house. This was the first time that the kids were together (first cousins for the first time... : ) Anyways, we tried to get a picture of the 3 of them together (so grandma can put them all in the same frame : ) However, in order to do that we had to place them rather far apart since Hannah flails her arms around constantly when on her back (like a turtle on it's back) and Owen can hardly lay still for an instant. We didn't want to lay them too close to Reid and either have Hannah smack him in the face or Owen roll over on top of him. So, the picture is a bit awkward, but, hey, they are all in the same picture! : ) Reid in over 5 lbs now and is eating around 2 to 2.5 oz of milk every 3 hours or so. I think he goes a little longer at night, maybe 4 hours. But since he is mostly bottle feeds, Chet gets to help with the night feedings - lucky Chet, lucky Amanda! Reid had an eye doctor appointment today and he came away with a good report. Looks like the bleeding that was behind the eye has stopped and he doesn't need to have another checkup for a year or so. The doctor said with preemies they are more likely to have lazy eyes or need for glasses. But all in all Reid is doing great. Thanks again for all your thoughts and prayers in that department.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

One thing I do know

I don't know about tomorrow
I just live from day to day
I don't borrow from its sunshine
For its skies may turn to gray
I don't worry o'er the future
For I know what Jesus said
And today I'll walk beside Him
For He knows what is ahead
Many things about tomorrow
I don't seem to understand
But I know who holds tomorrow
And I know who holds my hand
I don't know about tomorrow
It may bring me poverty
But the one who feeds the sparrow
Is the one who stands by me
And the path that be my portion
May be through the flame or flood
But His presence goes before me
And I'm covered with His blood


I have been singing this song over and over, whether out loud or in my head for the last few days. Whenever I here something about the economy or the election or anything else that's troubling these days, I just start singing this song. It's just gets me back to what really matters in life and the fact that God really does have it all under control. I find the days more worrisome now that I have children. And I need to remind myself of the fact that God has their future in His hands, too. This is one of my favorite songs, even when I was younger. Because if you know me at all, you know I am a huge worrier (I was concerned about the ozone before it was popular to be concerned about the ozone : ) I don't know about tomorrow, but I know who holds my hand. Thank you, Jesus! : )

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Dr. Suess and football





This past weekend we got to keep my cousin Tonia and her 2 girls overnight with us. Amanda had a baby shower on Saturday that they came down for. Saturday morning as we were getting ready Tonia's youngest, Abigail, was reading a Dr. Suess book to Hannah - I thought the moment was so cute I had to get a picture of it. Hannah just watched her the whole time. The other picture is of Tonia's other daughter, Rachel, with Owen. Just as Owen was getting warmed up to them and having a good time, we had to leave for the shower : )

Then in the evening, Paul's parents and his brother and his wife came over for supper around our fire pit. Owen played a little football with Uncle Sam and supervised the game of 'cornhole.' It was a perfect evening for a campfire. And of course Owen had a great time -he got to be outside and run around and play in the dirt : )

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Homeward bound

Reid Arthur got to go home today! He went home with Chet and Amanda some time this afternoon/evening. The last weigh-in that I know of he is 4 lb 15 oz : ) Reid was discharged with a heart monitor which he will need to wear 24/7. I'm not sure of much else but I wanted to at least let everyone know that the Chet Wenninger family is together - at home : ) Now they will need our prayers as they adjust to having Reid in their constant care without the help of the medical staff that they have gotten used to over the last 6 weeks. But to have him in his own home : )praise God for his faithfulness!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Another hospital visit



Michelle and I went up to see Amanda and Reid yesterday. Over the weekend he pulled his feeding tube out of his nose. I think they reinserted it once but then removed it since he is doing a lot of his feeding/eating himself. So here is a picture from Michelle's camera of Reid with no tubes! Yea! They are talking in a few days of Reid coming home. Not sure what day yet, but soon. I don't have the rest of the current stats as far as weight and such, but he is still gaining. They are doing an MRI of his brain to check out the cyst/dimple whatever they call it and also he has to do a sleep study to check for sleep apnea. Michelle wanted to have a picture of the 3 of us - this one was taken in Reid's room. A nurse at the hospital got us mixed up once - said we all look alike ??? I really don't see it at all : )

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Buckeyes-in-training





Last evening, we took a family excursion down to the cemetery in Antwerp and picked up buckeyes. After a quick lesson in 'buckeyes are like rocks, we don't eat them" Owen was ready to help pick. He gave us a solid 20 minutes of picking up nuts and putting them in his little bucket before he was distracted with other things (sticks, dirt, throwing buckeyes, etc). We spent about 45 minutes and picked up about 3/4 of a 5 -gallon bucket full. I'm not sure what the whole plan is for all these poisonous nuts that you can't eat but I'm sure Paul has a great idea in mind : ) If anything we can make buckeye necklaces...

Friday, September 12, 2008

I Garden, Therefore I Can

OK, I was canning my umpteenth jar of peaches the other day and this meandered into my musings. I Garden, Therefore I Can - a switch on the I Think, Therefore I Am philosophy. I thought it was cute (I might be the only one) but maybe there are others out there who have been canning and preserving all summer and they can see the light at the end of the tunnel - Fall! Don't get me wrong, I am so thankful for the amount of free food that is on our property and it is an awesome feeling when you are all done to look at the full cupboards, but sometimes in the middle of it all...sigh : )I have put up 38 quarts of peaches and am now done as of yesterday, but the pears are close to being ready so I'll be doing pear sauce pretty soon. The last in a long line of produce: strawberries, cherries, green beans, squash, tomatoes, peaches, apples, and then pears. But when those are done, we'll hunker down for the winter and enjoy the fruits of our labor (no pun intended)

More on Reid


I went and visited Amanda and Reid the other day and was able to get a few pictures. Here he is with his eyes open, but he just finished eating so he has that 'drunk baby' look : ) Reid is now over 4 lbs and is sleeping in a bassinet and no longer the isolette. The one problem that has come up is that the rescan of Reid's brain shown that the blood/bruising from a month ago had reabsorbed but in its place is now a cyst. The doctor is a little concerned and they will do an MRI before Reid goes home. At this point they can't tell what this cyst is affecting (motor planning, speech, etc) but from all checks Reid is doing well, so...
As far as getting to go home, Reid has to take all food from a bottle or nursing (he started nursing for the first time on Wednesday) in a 24-48 hour period with no help from the feeding tube in his nose. He's not there yet, but he's close.
Please continue to keep them in your prayers as Reid continues to grow and develop and making the transition home.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Fire Ring






We received a fire ring and stones to go around it for an anniversary gift. Yesterday evening we tried it out for the first time and roasted hot dogs and s'mores. Owen thought he was 'big stuff' sitting on the lawn chair and Hannah even enjoyed her meal outside - rice cereal. She is still getting the hang of it as you can see - this was only her 3rd day at trying it. Hopefully we will have more days like we did yesterday so we can enjoy the fire this fall. The only thing is, these fires get me in the mood to go camping... : )