Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Million dollar smiles

 I live in an old house. Its not ours. I don't have a dryer so my wash is hanging all over the place on a rainy day. My boys dress in raggy pants and shirts. 

But you know what? I do not  envy the lady who has all she can possibly need but no littles to fill that empty place in her arms. No smiles to greet her with. 
A friend from Germany visited us and told us how many of the german couples there do not want to have children.

Maybe next year I will have a dryer, or maybe I will someday have a new house to live in. But what I know is that I have 5 of the sweetest blessings any woman could ever have, whether she believes it or not.
  I am rich, very rich.

Monday, September 15, 2014

6 Months!

Yesterday marked the 6th month of Marianne's life. What a lot has happened since the birth! And what a change for the better she is showing lately. We are ever so grateful!

It was the toughest 6 months of my life. There have been tears, prayers, worries, and those all many times over. Many Drs checkups that were not always very helpful. Lots of exhausting short nights. Trying to get enough milk into her with a syringe so she would get enough. Wondering at first if she would even make it as weak as she had become once we realized that something was wrong. I had to stay home much longer with her because she needed so much time to eat. There was no time and energy left for anything else.

So many people have helped. So many people have prayed! How I thank everyone for doing what you did for us! I wish there was a better way of thanking everyone personally, but I know that is impossible. I just hope these photos are a small reward for you! God certainly answered many prayers.

At 6 months she has reached the 30th percentile again and almost doubled her weight. Its still a ways away from the 85th but it is much better than it was. She is a vibrant,  excited little girlie doing everything that the book says a 6 month old should.

She can almost sit. She rolls over every which way in bed and is starting to push up on her knees when in bed.She laughs, cries and smiles. She gets excited when daddy comes home. She loves it when her older siblings play with her; she loves playing with toys. She gets upset if we take her toys away.
 She is our little miracle.

 Are her troubles all over? We certainly don't have the answer to that, but we are forbidden to be anxious for tomorrow.

I never knew how much love I had in my heart to give until God gave me 
A special child to love.
-Pioneer Mom

Growing Up

It seems like just yesterday when these two were still in their diapers. Now they are both in their saddles on their own horses. One in grade 6 and the other in 4. It is with bittersweet joy that I watch them grow up. For now, I treasure these days to the fullest.

 The good thing is, I still have one in diapers! And three not officially in school yet.

Jessica Faith
Joseph Kyle
Timothy Earl
Victoria Hope
Marianne Joy

-Mommy and Daddy love and treasure you more than you know.

Yes, God has blessed us abundantly. 
Thank YOU Lord!

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Transformation taking place

I wish I could say exactly what happened to make this baby start gaining lbs again, but it seems like a bit of a mystery to us, one that we are just enjoying! I have added some coconut oil and cooked egg yolk to her diet. That might play a role, and perhaps she is also stronger on her own to nurse like she should. Whatever it is, its a joy to watch her not only get heavier each week but also make her way up the chart again. Now at 5 months she has passed the 15th percentile on her way up!

She still has a ways to go to catch up to big sister, but no worries! If she gets there or not doesn't matter, we are just happy with the way she is going now.

She has gotten much stronger as well. She still does not have the grasp in her hands that other babies her age do. For that I have started exercising her plus putting her on the tummy -- a lot. I believe we'll get there soon, with lots of love and patience and some extra attention! She is such a special little gift to our family. We all adore her, and she is so loved!

(the pink dress was a homemade gift from a friend; very special)

Friday, July 25, 2014

Trip to the ER

For a change we took Victoria in to see a Dr this week. She is two and in the stage where she loves getting in trouble, or so it seems! So one afternoon this week I found her in the pantry where she had managed to pull her high chair through the door and then got on it and was able to reach my medication. I know, this is not good! I asked her what she was doing and she proudly showed me the empty vitamin E bottle. it was almost new and I had not taken out much more than 15 out of a hundred if even that. I quickly picked up the pills I found and then off to google to see what happens in a v e overdose. I didn't need to read much past the words: in case of overdose seek emergency medical attention. 

I called Daniel and told him what had happened and that we needed to take her in. I also called the local nurse, who contacted a ped for me and then called me back and said I needed to make that child vomit. I had never done such a thing before, but by then Daniel was home so he held her while I stuck my finger in her throat. She threw up a blob of the stuff, but we still felt we needed and were encouraged by the nurse to take her in. You don't let a child eat 80 or more v e's and not do something about it! I also looked in my chart to see what to do in case of vitamin overdose. It said to give charcoal and milk so that's what I did.

Off to the nearest hospital we went. It was one hour after ingesting the pills that they suctioned out her stomach. It must have been the most horrifying experience for a little girl, but one that needed to happen. She showed no negative side effects so we believe she was spared the worst. I am so thankful I caught her in time. The Lord is merciful!

Monday, July 14, 2014

Trip to Guatemala

We came back from a short trip to Guatemala city. The Dr. took a good look at her, did several tests, but was not able to find any more at this point other than the uti she has had. We are to watch out for more uti s in the next few months. If there is a further problem that she gets them, we are to come back for more testing to see if her urethers have defects. Otherwise, he encouraged  us to just feed her, perhaps try a little formula on the side to see if that did the trick. Not that I think it is the problem, but if that would fatten her up I'd be willing to try it.

What we would have liked to see was if there was a way to get her tested for metabolic diseases, but it seems like that's not so easily done this side of the US. The blood would need to be shipped to the US, or we would need to go there for further tests. We feel that is a little out of reach at this point. But the Dr himself was so unconcerned about any serious problems that we don't feel it has to be done right now. 

She is a happy and healthy girlie otherwise so we might just be destined to have a small baby on our hands. She is clearly very smart and alert.

We might have more questions in the future, but for now we try to relax and believe that the Lord is guiding us and we can trust in Him and that we are doing our part.

Monday, July 7, 2014

The decision

 We have made the big decision to take our girlie to Guatemala City tomorrow. We have seen Drs here several times but so far no one can give us the answers we need. There are times when we look at her and see nothing wrong either, but then she should be recovering from her lost weight but does not. She is such a sweetheart and we just want her suffering to end. She looks happy here, and thankfully we have lots of those times, but too often I can tell she has discomfort. 
We need to trust that the Lord has led us to take this way. Right now all we see in front of us is a big mountain, but we can trust the Lord is holding our hand as we climb it together.
 The following song has been my comfort so often after this baby, and it will sustain me further.
I know not what awaits me,
  God kindly veils my eyes,
And o’er each step of my onward way
  He makes new scenes to rise;
And every joy He sends me comes
  A sweet and glad surprise
  Where He may lead I’ll follow,
  My trust in Him repose;
And every hour in perfect peace,
  I’ll sing, “He knows, He knows“;
And every hour in perfect peace,
    I’ll sing, “He knows, He knows

One step I see before me,
  ’Tis all I need to see,
The light of heaven more brightly shines
  When earth’s illusions flee;
And sweetly through the silence comes,
  His loving, “Trust in Me!

Oh, blissful lack of wisdom,
  ’Tis blessed not to know;
He holds me with His own right hand,
  And will not let me go,
And lulls my troubled soul to rest
  In Him who loves me so

So on I go not knowing;
  I would not if I might;
I’d rather walk in the dark with God
  Than go alone in the light;
I’d rather walk by faith with Him
  Than go alone by sight

Monday, June 30, 2014

If the path I travel

Look who's happy here! The culture test last week revealed that the bacteria did not return. Praise the Lord! But, even though she started out looking better right after that, there are still some signs that there might be deeper problems. But even the Dr noticed positive improvements so we are still hopeful. Hopeful like we have been from the start!

 Her passport is ready this week, so we are planning to go to Guatemala city next week IF she does not improve with all symptoms. We hope desperately that it will not be necessary but we are ready if needed. She has so many good signs. She started giggling last week! Nothing sounds sweeter!

If this whole experience with our precious baby draws me closer to God, it will not have been in vain. That is my prayer.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Bad news

I am longing for the day when things will change, but until then, we will take things one day at a time. I want to thank you all for standing with us! All encouragement is welcome. I love your comments, so please leave me some at the end of the article! Thanks!

Marianne has come to a standstill with her weight at this point. this is the first time a week has passed that the scale showed 0 oz gain. I took her back to the Dr today, and we are doing another culture test to determine if her bacteria is still present. 

Whatever the situation, it is apparent that she will need help and need it soon! We are praying for the Lord to lead us.

We will not be able to do much more in this country, so we will need to know where to go, whom to go to, when to go, and all the other details that will need working out. 

I know you are praying. Thank you!

(At this point, if anyone out there happens to know of a great pediatrician in Guatemala City, please share! We are not sure how to go about finding a good Dr. Right now we think we would likely go to  Guatemala city for further treatments, but we have yet to see where the Lord leads.)

Friday, June 13, 2014

Baby Update

Dear friends. Last week we took our Marianne to another Dr who performed some more tests, and he found a bacteria in her urine. This could be enough to cause a bunch of the symptoms she has had. She is now on antibiotic treatment which ends next week. 

There have been some improvements, so we are hopeful that this might heal her and finally allow her to become that strong and healthy child she was when she was born.

Thank you for praying! I will keep updating here.

Friday, June 6, 2014

Marianne and Victoria

Here is our tiny little girlie at over 11 weeks. Something is wrong with her but we can't find out yet what it is. She is getting lower on the growth chart as we continue to pray and do the tests available in this country. What is in store for us we don't know at this point, but we are waiting to see what the next few weeks will bring. If you are burdened to do so, please pray for us as we seek the Lord in  this!

Victoria celebrated her second birthday last month. At least we have one chubby healthy little girlie!

Saturday, May 3, 2014

Marianne 6 weeks

 Big sister is a big help and she enjoys these moments. I enjoy seeing them!

We are still trying hard to get her weight gain to go up. At 7 weeks she has gained almost 1 lb after she reached her birth weight at one month. That is too little, but at least we are going up and not down! We have had her seen by a pediatrician but nothing is wrong with her that is obvious to us at this point.

We are just thankful that she is all right and that we don't need to worry anymore. We might never have an answer as to why she can't nurse enough on her own to gain, but there are other ways to feed her so that's what we do. And we do know that she is getting stronger so there is hope that all will be well soon!

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

the first picnic after baby!

 two weeks ago I could have only dreamed of something like this. thankfully, things change, get better, and slowly return to a more normal here. Marianne is still not quite where she should be with weight and nursing, but definitely better. 

I decided it was time for a picnic! After baking a casserole out of the freezer and making sweet iced tea and a few more dishes, we packed up and headed out, which was only about 8 minutes from home!

 It was fun just watching the kids be their young innocent selves, enjoying childhood at its best.

 Climbing trees...

 running around barefoot in that hot sun, getting red cheeks...

Jessica comes back from hunting for rocks.

 Building boats out of foam plates, looking for life in the water...


It has been a great day. 

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Timothy adores his little sister and can't get enough of her.

 And Victoria gets as close as possible whenever she can. 

 Grandparents meet grandchild number 25!

Monday, March 31, 2014

Update on baby

 Here is an update. we are very thankful our baby was born healthy and strong, but since the birth she has lost a lot of weight, till we found out she has not been getting enough nourishment. Since then we have been working extra hard to try to get the milk into her that she needs. I see improvements already, so we believe she will soon be back to where she started from.  It has been a very hard and exhausting beginning, not to mention complications with the surgery, but all should be well soon, especially now that my Mom is almost here to take care of us. God is good! We thank friends for praying for us!

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Welcoming into the world--

Our sweet and new little babe,
Marianne Joy
Born on Friday the 14th of March

 This little girlie got named after my Mom and myself, Maria and Annie. We think it will be special to her as she grows up.

 Introducing the two babies at the hospital.

 What a Joy to behold! A new life never fails to be a miracle.

We had made these special shoes for baby before she was born, and timothy asked to be the first to put them on. I promised he would, and he enjoyed it. He really loves his little sister, and feels proud to watch over her as I leave the room. 

Sleep peacefully, our little bundle of Joy. we love you, and are happier than we can say that you joined our family...
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