Category Archives: Parenting
It is worrisome when your battery indicator light comes on. It’s more worrisome when you are traveling on the interstate. It’s more worrisome still when you are on the interstate miles and miles away from home on vacation with your husband and eight kids. It is down right horrible when all of this happens on a Sunday night.
We about a half and hour away from checking-in to our cabin in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee when battery light came on. I was in the passenger seat and so I looked in the manual to see what it said . . . the battery is not charging correctly. We started to lose power so we pulled off the interstate and tried to get to a gas station before our van completely died. We told the kids to pray. We made it to the Love’s gas station in Dandridge, Tennessee.
James called AAA and they said they would send someone out. He explained that we he was on vacation with his wife and 8 kids. The AAA guy called us and said he was about a half an hour away. Mike got to Love’s and charged our battery. Then he checked to see if the battery would hold a charge. When he tested things, he discovered our battery was good, but we needed a new alternator. On a Sunday night with eight kids we were stranded in Love’s parking lot. The AAA guy closed to van hood and said he would make a few phone calls.
James told me the bad news. We told the kids to keep praying. I looked up some auto repair shops and all of them were closed or closing in just a few minutes. James and I talked getting the van towed to a auto repair place, renting a vehicle, and finding another place to stay if we missed our check-in time. We talked about how much money all of this would cost. We talked about the possibility of spending the night in the van at Love’s gas station and calling for a tow, taking the van to the repair shop, and getting a rental in the morning when we knew things would be open.
The AAA guy, Mike, was talking on the phone for quite a while. He got into this truck and sat for a while. He got out of the truck and walked toward us. James thought he was going to come over to talk to us so he got out of the van, but Mike stayed on his phone and kept walking back and forth so James got back into the van. Finally Mike asked James to pop the hood.
Mike got off the phone and motioned for James to come talk to him and then he started changing the tire on his own work truck. He then told James something totally unexpected. Mike had found the alternator at an auto parts store and he would change it that night after he got his truck tire changed! He gave me a thumbs up and mouthed, “we’re good,” at me. Curious to know what was up I opened my door and James told me the good news!
Mike drove James to go get the new alternator. They got to the auto parts store at 8:02 p.m. and the store closed at 8 p.m. They saw the guy inside, but he shook his head at them and waved they off. So Mike called another store a little farther away. They had the part and didn’t close until 9 p.m. so they went there.
Mike changed our alternator and by 9:30 p.m. we were on the road again. Mike would only let James pay for the alternator and he refused to accept any money for changing it out! The kids and I tried to sing happy birthday to Mike but he was embarrassed and walked away. We thanked him profusely!
While we sat there our oldest daughter said I know the name of this place is Love’s but I hate it! It was not fun sitting in the van for 3 hours at Love’s gas station, and none of the kids wanted to go to a Love’s gas stations again, but I can’t say that I blame them!
God can take what seems like an absolutely horrid situation and turn it into a story about how He is watching out for us all the time!
There is a little shelf beside my bed that has my important stuff on it. My family recently moved to a new house so I have been thinking about what things are most important to me. A stuffed animal moose and a camping nightlight moose remind me of Alaska where I went on a mission trip that brought me closer to God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit.
A little heart that reads, Always My Mother, Forever my FRIEND. My mom read different ones to my 5-year-old daughter at the store and picked this one out for me. It truly is my prayer that my kids will grow up and see me as someone who is their friend.
The footprint painting is a surprise find that was lost in our old house but my super awesome landlords/friends found and returned to me. On it are the footprints of our five oldest kids and it reminds me of my JOB and my kids. My mom job is the biggest, scariest, most awesome and most important job ever.
One book on my shelf is “14,000 things to be happy about.” It is just a quirky book that I bought a long long time ago that so me! Also on my shelf are the books, A Christian Mother Goose Rock-A-Bye Bible, Tuesdays with Morrie, and Many Ways to Say I Love You by Fred Rogers. My little prayer jounal with Bible verses, prayers, and quotes that I have been hiding in my heart is sitting on my Bible.
Another lost and found treasure is a plastic license plate that reads “Smile God Loves You!” My family got it for my grandparents who had displayed it in their kitchen years and years ago. I kept it after my Grandma went to the nursing home and now that both of them have gone to eternity in heaven it is a little thing that remind me of the BIG TRUTH that they helped me learn: God Loves Me and everyone else too!
I keep a little album of photos of my grandparents by my bed. The other day was 16 years since my Grandpa has been gone and though I miss my grandparents so much I celebrate that they are with Jesus! Photos are priceless memories!
My stuffed animal purple turtle that my husband let the kids pick out me because they know my favorite color and my favorite animal! James was pretty surprised to find it because they knew what they wanted to get me! a purple turtle! It reminds me that they do love me (even if it sometimes seems like they are just trying to make me crazy)! An Ewok from my sister who knows I love Star Wars. A Precious Moments white porcelain cross that was our wedding cake topper, and a plaque with part of the Footprints poem are on the bottom shelf. They are symbols of my two best friends my James, and my Jesus.
The shelf itself was made by my husband’s late great-grandfather. He loved his family and he loved to make useful things for his family.
It is hard work to unpack and organize after a move. It has made think about what is most important to me and why it is important!
With 4 out of 8 kids recovering from a stomach bug I opted for a super simple dinner. I suggested soup, and even one of the kids who hasn’t been sick wanted chicken noodle soup. I suggested sandwiches to a healthy kid and the kid was not impressed. All of the things he wanted required extra cooking and time. I went to the pantry and looked for other options and found one single serving microwavable tomato soup cans and offered that to the healthy kid. The tomato soup was approved. Sandwiches and soup were prepared and dinner was served. After the kids prayed, one of the sick kids said to me, “Thank you for making supper.” The healthy kid flashed a big grin at me. It made me feel like the best mom ever just because the kid was so thankful for the tomato soup.
I am happy that I could make my kid happy by heating up some tomato soup. It seemed like a very small thing to me, but it was a big thing to the kid. You never know how the things you say or do no matter how big or small affect those around you!
I am happy to report that no one has been sick since early this morning and everyone seems to be feeling better! We are so thankful for the prayers of our friends and family!
Hooray! My due date is now only seven days away!
grand multiparity n. the condition of a woman who has had five or more previous pregnancies. This means my pregnancy is considered high risk, but I really haven’t had many complications!
One fun fact are that babies of “moms of many” sometimes don’t get into birthing position until labor starts. The other day I had an ultrasound just to check to see if my little one is head down. She is head down but not dropping so all the contractions that I’ve been having aren’t productive in changing my cervix. Did I mention that I believe Braxton-Hicks contractions are evil?
Another not so fun thing is that I have lots of Braxton-Hicks contractions and they get worse with every baby. This week I had three days in a row of misery where I couldn’t get the contractions to stop. Thankfully I’ve been given a couple of days break from them, but I know very well that this is just the calm before the storm!
I’m trying for a VBAC delivery, because #7 was breech I had to have a surprise C-section, but chances are a VBAC will go off without a hitch!
We’re ready and waiting!!! My bag is packed. The car seat is ready and the tiny clothes are washed and put away. Now if only we can find the “safe place” where I put the Pack ‘N Play bassinet!
Our sweet “BB-8,” also known as Baby 8 has caused quite a stir among our friends and family! So many have been wondering and praying that our new addition is a boy because we have shared God’s promise of three sons! We have a deal with God! James and I are up for whatever God wants and how ever many kids He wants for us! We have been trusting Him and He ALWAYS has a better plan for us than we do! If James and I would have stopped at three kids we would have missed out on a whole lot of love!
Here’s a video of us telling the kids the news by giving them some gifts to open! You may need to turn the volume down at the 1:40 mark!
Gift number one: A little ornament
Gift number two: a totally neural outfit
Gift number three: A note that read, “You get to find out today if a brother or sister is coming your way.”
Gift number four: a tiny snowman sleeper
It should still be nice and cold in Indiana in mid-February when our sixth baby GIRL comes home and we can’t wait! Our ultrasound showed that she is healthy and well and an estimated 15 oz. Praise God!!!
My first doctor’s visit for baby number eight went wonderfully. I love the doctors’ office that I go to. Every time I go I feel like I am visiting friends that are dear to me. Their caring, compassion, and professionalism as they have cared for me and my babies through the years is priceless. I should be used to the hurried pitter-patter of a little heartbeat playing on the doppler, but I leaves me awestruck each and every time. I made a recording on my phone to play for my husband and the kids. I keep playing it over and over to listen to. During the recording you can hear the my heartbeat and the quicker heartbeat of our little baby. I have been feeling pregnant; I’m extra tired, a bit queasy, and I’ve put on a few extra pounds, but hearing the baby’s heartbeat makes is all the more real to me. I know the next 200 days until we get to meet our little one is going to fly by!
We are blessed and oh so thankful for everyone’s love and prayers for us! God is good!