Thursday, January 21, 2010

Thank You, Father!

Well, it's that time of year to reflect on what God has done for us in 2009. I did this last year and I want to continue to do it so as a family we can look back and remember how good God has been to us. In the video, Cooper is singing a prayer the boys have learned and we sing at dinner. I love to hear the boys sing it together. So here is a look back at 2009:

In January, just a couple of weeks after writing this post, we received two offers on our house that we had been trying to sell for 2 1/2 years! We ended up getting our asking price for our house and this was nothing short of a miracle. We are so thankful God sold our house and I'll have to say it was PERFECT timing! We were getting to the point where we were about to have to dip into long-term savings to pay the mortgage because Travis was unemployed/self-employed and we didn't have a regular income. We had discussed many times either me finding a part-time job or Travis taking a second job to help with finances. God definitely took us on a faith journey through the selling of the house and Travis' time of unemployment. It was probably the hardest time we have endured since we have been married, but I'm definitely grateful for the lessons we learned about trusting God.

In February we moved for the first time this year to a rent house so that Travis could complete some work he had already committed to. God provided just what we needed to get by during the rest of Travis' unemployment/self-employment. I've started doing our taxes for this past year and it's actually kind of comical looking at everything because on paper we made very little this year. But that isn't the point. The point is God took care of our every need despite our income. Because of his provision for our family we made it through 9 months of Travis doing small construction jobs without incurring one penny of debt! Praise God!

During the rest of our time in Spring we continued to try and figure out what God wanted us to do about moving and about the farm. Things were not looking good for the possibilities of joining the farm. We were also concerned because I was going to have to work part-time if Travis joined the farm and we still wanted to add to our family. We just didn't know how that would happen or what that would look like for our family. I just remember specifically praying about me being able to continue to stay home and adding another child to the family. I just felt like God wanted me to ask Him for these things and not assume that He wasn't going to allow that for me.

One particular day in May I remember going over some finances with Travis and we were both getting stressed just talking about it. Later that afternoon I just remember giving it to God and truly letting him have our burdens. That evening we got a phone call regarding a position for Travis to manage a medical clinic in Harlingen. It sounded kind of random, but we were definitely interested in finding out more information about it. Travis talked to the doctor who started the clinic and was very impressed and we both felt like this was what we were supposed to do. Travis went and interviewed for the position and he was offered the position later that month. We were thrilled that we would soon have a regular paycheck that would allow me to continue to stay home and allow us to have another child!

In June we came down to look at houses and found a great house with a pool and we were able to negotiate an awesome deal leaving us room in our budget to renovate it which is exactly what we wanted.

In July we moved for the second time this year. During the move down here my car was towed incorrectly and the transmission was ruined. We were not happy about the situation, but luckily we had set aside some money for a new car once we sold the house. Once again God provided for us. We were able to find a great used car at a price below our budget. I had an idea of what I wanted in the ideal situation- leather seats, DVD player for the kids, and bucket seats in the middle row. But buying a used car you don't always get what you want and especially when you have a limited budget. Travis called one afternoon to tell me they had found a car- it was an Expedition which wasn't necessarily what I wanted, but I agreed to go look. He said it was leather seats and had a DVD player. When we got to the car lot we opened the doors and it had bucket seats in the middle! So we decided to go ahead and buy it and we have been very happy with it. We were also able to save money since we came under our budget!

Once we finally closed on our house in August we began renovations. Not long after we closed on the house we found out we were expecting! We finally got the house far enough along to where we could move in. So for the third time this year we moved! And yes, I don't want to move for a long time!!! We spent almost a year in transition and it's so nice to be in our own home again.

In November on our trip to Tyler for Thanksgiving Cooper was diagnosed with pneumonia. After a few days in the hospital in Tyler he was taken to Children's hospital in Dallas. God once again showed us mercy. We were surrounded by family who helped to care for Tyler during this time. We were also surrounded by incredible doctors and nurses who helped Cooper during his stay. We are so grateful God choose to heal Cooper without surgery. We are so thankful for our sweet Cooper and the joy he brings us and we are so grateful we got to bring him home happy and healthy!

Looking back this hasn't been the easiest year. We have had a lot of uncertainty and change in our lives, but we have so much to be thankful for each day. Travis has a good job and works in an incredible environment with an amazing boss. I'm so proud of him for stepping into a new job and working hard for his family. I've heard multiple people complimenting him on the job he is doing and how the atmosphere has changed since he arrived. We don't know what the future holds for Travis, but we are trusting God in the meantime. I'm also very proud of the boys. They have done such a good job adjusting. It wasn't easy at first, but they have made new friends and enjoy going to school and AWANA each week.

The move to Harlingen hasn't always been easy with all the changes going on in our lives. It's been different moving from the city to a small town and sometimes I feel like I live in a foreign country! HA!!! Our biggest frustration has been our struggle to find a church home. I kind of feel lost without it and it makes me really miss our old church. We are praying that God would lead us to where He wants us in the new year so that we can feel grounded again.

We have a lot to look forward to in the new year. Most of all we are anxiously awaiting the birth of our daughter. We can't wait to meet her. The boys are constantly talking about her- what she will eat, what toys they will share with her, where she will sleep, etc. It's really cute and I hope they will still love her once she arrives!

I'm really impressed if you have continued reading this far. I hope you will take the time to remember what God has done in your life this year as we begin 2010!

Monday, January 04, 2010

Visit from Gram and Papa

After Christmas, my parents came down for a long weekend. We had a great time with Gram and Papa. We opened presents,

built a sandox in the backyard,

played some golf,

ate some good food, watched football, and had way too much fun shopping for a sweet little girl! Thanks Gram and Papa for a great weekend. We are looking forward to a fun week in February!


We had a great Christmas this year celebrating with the Johnson Family. It was a little strange for us because we live here now and were by ourselves on Christmas morning. I don't ever remember a Christmas growing up or since we have been married that it was just our immediate family. We opened stockings here and had breakfast as a family and then headed over to Travis' parents house to open presents with the rest of the family staying there. This is the first year that the boys were really into Christmas and it was fun to share in their excitement!

Here we are at Tyler's Christmas Program at his school. He did great and it was a lot of fun to see him on stage with his class.

On Christmas Eve morning we stayed home and made some cookies for Santa. I let the boys use the cookie cutters to shape them and then I baked them. Then I let the boys decorate the cookies with icing and sprinkles. It was hilarious watching them. Cooper only decorated a couple because he was too busy eating them!

You will need to zoom in on the picture to get the full effect. This is Cooper showing off one of his cookies. I'm pretty sure 1/4 of the sprinkles went on this one cookie! He is SO proud!!!

Oops! Caught eating another cookie.

Christmas morning- ready to see what Santa brought.

Tyler opening his stocking.

Cooper was excited about his truck!

Shelby opening presents at Grandma's house. She was VERY excited about opening her kitchen.

Cooper opening his present from Uncle Ross. This present caused an immediate fight between he and Tyler. Tyler thought he should have it and we had to have a little heart to heart about sharing before continuing on with more presents.

Uncle Ross also included a Coon skin hat???

Tyler showing off his walkie talkies from Cade.

Grandma and Grandpa gave each of the boys a farm rug and a ton of tractors, combines, cotton pickers, and pickup trucks. The boys were in heaven and we would have to call Tyler in the other room when he had another present to open because he was busy playing with his farm!

On Christmas afternoon we headed over to Great Grandma Johnson's house to eat a delicious dinner and open presents from Santa! This is the second time the boys have seen Santa this year and Tyler has no fear and Cooper is TERRIFIED to say the least!

Cooper worried that Santa is about to call his name. Mama had to go with him to get his present because he was so scared!

I hope everyone had a Merry Christmas!


It's time for our recap of 2012!  This year has brought some major answer to prayers and we have seen the hand of God move in incredible...