Friday, February 26, 2010

Back to the daily grind.

I'm back! Well, I actually was never gone, but I took a leave of absence for a couple weeks to enjoy Justin's pre-deployment leave. We had so much fun! I'm so so glad we decided to take it because it was soooooo worth it!
The 2 weeks started with Justin's mom, Darby, coming to visit us from England! This was the first time since we were married in 2006 that she has been to our house so when we found out she'd for sure be coming we were elated!
Darby got here on the Saturday before Valentine's Day and spent the next week with us! On Sunday morning I got up and made breakfast for my "gang"! It consisted of French Toast Casserole, eggs, and a mixed berry salad. It was so delicious even I was impressed! We got ready for church and headed off for our day full of fun! After church we went to John and Michelle Randall's house (our pastor here, who happens to be the same pastor we had back home and the one who married us). It was a fantastic afternoon full of great food and lots of laughs!
We headed back to our neck of the woods (our church is roughly 30 minutes away in San Juan Capistrano) and had the opportunity to watch a couple of cute little guys so their mommy and daddy could go enjoy a night out for Valentine's Day! Talk about spreading the love!! It's also so fun to have more little people in our house. I sometimes feel bad for Eli because he is an only child and is often playing by himself, but we certainly get our fill of Quinn and Grayson so I never really feel that bad!
The next week flew by, unfortunately. We went to Sea World, the Zoo, did a little shopping, ate lots of food, and had great conversations! I'm so glad that mom was able to come and spend time with Justin, Elijah, and I before Justin deploys.
The next week we spent most of our time at home oddly enough! I had grand plans of ice skating, roller skating, the park, the library, but we just chilled out here. We stayed up way to late and slept in way to much, but I think it's what Justin and I both needed.... Some good US time!
God has really done a work in both of our lives the last 8 weeks or so. We are learning daily, hourly, minutely to rely on Jesus for everything. Our love for each other has grown leaps and bounds and I know it's all because our love for Jesus has grown even more!
As we close these two weeks I look back and thank Jesus for giving us this time together as a family as we know so many people don't get the opportunity.
I am confident that we will climb this very tall hill and be even stronger coming down the other side.
We covet your prayers as our countdown has almost begun. I pray the next 6 months will fly by, but also that we'll take advantage of the time apart to prepare ourselves for what's ahead!
(That doesn't mean I am looking forward to this deployment in any way, but because we have to be apart that we'll grow and learn where God wants us too.)
Hopefully in the next couple posts I can add pictures of all the fun stuff we did, but for now it's time to cuddle on the couch with two loves!

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Hard at work

Justin is outside right now making shelves for me. I found some in a West Elm magazine that I really liked, but hated the price tag so he decided to make them for me! Isn't he so sweet! Anyway, that really has nothing to do with this, but I was going to do a full blog post of what we've been doing the last week or so, but instead I'm going to enjoy all the precious moments I have with Justin off of work... Then when he is back to work next week I'll post one of my famous posts!

Anyway, here are my boys hard at work making my shelves!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Sneak peek

Here's a sneak peek of what we have been up to this week!

I'll post the rest when life settles down, but for now we are enjoying Justin's pre-deployment leave!

Thursday, February 11, 2010


During the course of this last month, Justin and I have had an earnest heart to live completely sold out for our Lord. We have such a heart for all the lost souls in the Marine Corps. We (especially me) aren't ones to boldly come out and question people's faith. Justin and I firmly believe by just living our lives as above reproach as we possibly can is going to be a bigger witness than anything we say.
There have been specific instances in my life over the course of the last 3.5 years (and my whole life for that matter) that I have made very poor decisions and have dealt with things that were in a way, not Christ-like. I tend to have a bad attitude and get all defensive. Justin has been a huge encouragement to me because he is totally opposite! He is a go with the flow, mellow, easy to please person. I have learned so much through those specific instances because of his positive attitude.
Recently, my heart has changed. Don't get me wrong I still daily struggle with having the right attitude and making wiser choices in how I'll react to situations, but I feel as though God is redeeming me of that stronghold and is allowing me to remember when I did fail to encourage me.

The Apostle Paul is someone who I long to be like. His complete faith in my Heavenly Father is one most people look up too. His desire to reach his own people (Jews) and the sorrow that fills his heart because of their lack in faith is something I admire. Paul's sorrow was so profound that he tells Christ in Romans 9:1-3, He would give his place in heaven if it would means the Jews would confess their sins and accept Him as their Lord and Savior.
Moses also had the same sorrow when the children of Israel were worshiping the golden calf. Exodus 32:32 says, "Yet now, if You will forgive their sins--but if not, I pray, blot me out of Your book which You have written."

Obviously, it is not possible to give up your place in heaven, but to have such pain and sorrow for someone to be saved is totally amazing.
My heart is filled with sorrow for the non-believers, but certainly not to the point of Paul or Moses'.
I am in awe of how when I pray for my enemies(Enemies in my opinion here is one who has hurt me, doesn't know Christ, or doesn't see eye to eye with me) , God can change my heart from hurt and pain to such love and grace
I am reminded to be prayed up. Spend the alone time with God. I need to be daily speaking, praying, listening, and waiting upon the Lord.
Once I have accomplished that, I need to take the step of faith and to be bold.

Being bold in my faith doesn't mean that I try to cram Jesus down the throats of everyone that I come in contact with, but instead it is trying to build a bridge for them to get to Jesus. Listening and extending grace then looking for that open door to share the Gospel.
I want to be an example to those closest to me of how great my God is. How He sustains the entire universe in the palm of His hand. How He is in absolute control. How He is approachable. How He is the giver and maker of life.

God desires to take me and you deeper, higher, and wider with him. I just need to be willing.
I need to let go of my selfishness. I need live by the Spirit and not by the flesh. To make sacrifices (tv, computer, movies, magazines, music) and dwell on things of The Lord.

I realize that there will be some that reject God. It's talked about all through the Word. There are those who will delay their acceptance of Christ, and those who do accept Him. By simply preaching and living God's Word, simply I will be able to engage in dialogue with the non-believer. Patiently demonstrating that God's Word is proven time and time again.

I want my only regret to be that I didn't live sold out enough for The Lord.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

We are officially out of diapers!

Yep, you heard that correctly. We are, and have been, out of the diaper stage! I really thought the day would never come. Elijah is such an easy going kid, much like his father, and when we tried to potty train him around his 2nd birthday last March-April he took to it quickly, but then began to back track and potty in his underwear ALL the time. So we decided to wait a few months and give it another try.
I was hoping that we could have him potty trained before the new year, but uhhh, with all the moving and changes we opted out and waited.

We officially started potty training on the 18th of January! Elijah was 2 years and (within a few days) 10 months old. We had built up for nearly a month that one that specific day he would be wearing only underwears (as he calls them). It really has surprised both Justin and I at how well he has done this. Of course we've had some bumps, but for the most part he'll go many days without accidents. A few weeks ago we stopped doing diapers at night too!

So our household is officially diaper free! I couldn't be more excited!

Aren't those buns so cute in little Walle underwears!?

Friday, February 5, 2010

Happy 4th Anniversary, Honey!

Justin and I spent a fantastic evening together yesterday celebrating our 4th wedding anniversary. It was a night i'll never forget! We didn't do anything amazing, but being able to spend the entire evening together was such a rich blessing.
Unlike me, Justin was super excited about our anniversary. I'm not entirely sure why, but to be honest, I was just viewing it as any other day. We had no plans to go out, in fact, we had no plans at all. We decided to just lay low and stay home. We didn't have enough money to go out and I didn't want to add more money to our credit card on something we didn't need. I was really okay with it.

During the course of the last year and especially the last few months, Justin and I have become even closer. We had both been praying before our move that God would give us a fresh start this new year and that we would both walk deeper, wider, higher with Him. I feel we've done an excellent job keeping each other accountable (I also have an amazing sister in love who keeps me on track too!! Love ya sis!). My love for the Lord has grown leaps and bounds. I have enjoyed reading my Bible daily and spending many many hours praying (I try to pray all during the course of the day when God reminds me of something or someone to pray for). Now, I don't say all that to gloat or boast about myself, I say it in complete humility. I have become quieter in a sense and more ready to receive and listen. I am head over heels for my Savior.

The last 4 years haven't been without our fair share of trials both good and bad. I don't share this often, but Justin and I hit as close to rock bottom as I ever want to get. The D word never came up, but we were both unhappy. A lot had happened in the course of a few years. We got married, got pregnant, joined the Marines, had a baby, moved across the country, and the shortly there after Justin deployed. I figured if we survived the deployment then we would be fine, but what I failed to realize is that I never once put our marriage in God's hands. I never let Him lead... I'm a control freak, God is working on me. I just figured we'd make it if he came home alive... (Great thinking, eh?)
Once Justin was home and the initial bliss had died down, God revealed to me how much we needed Him front and center in every area of our lives. The Lord began convicting my heart in many areas. Over the course of the year we faced new challenges that I'm sure most married people at our stage had already experienced because they spent more than a few months here, a few months there, together. We became closer and more unified, just as God had intended.

Now fast forward, here on February 4, 2010. Four very fast years later, I stand in awe of all God has blessed us with. I am so humbled and grateful for all we've been given.
Yesterday I never once prayed that God would provide us a way to go out on a date, but He knew my hearts desire. When everything fell into place I was reminded of a verse in Romans.

"Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered." Romans 8:26

The Lord knew even without me saying a word. How awesome is that? The Holy Spirit is interceding for me because of my weaknesses (and sometimes pride). I am so so so so thankful for God sending His son to die for me so that He can intercede when I cannot even utter a word!

I'm ending with a short message to my beloved. Be blessed this week in whatever happens!


You are an incredible man of God. Your tender heart for the Lord, Elijah, and myself makes me fall in love with you all over again. In the almost 6 years we've been together you have taught me what unconditional love is. I am so thankful for all that you bring to this family. As I reflect on the last 4 years I am so blessed and incredibly honored that God chose me to be your wife! I pray these new 4 years God would use us to further His kingdom as we draw closer together in Him. You are the light of my life. I don't know what I would do without you. Thank you for daily choosing to love me, even when I down right don't deserve it. Thank you for your willingness to serve me. Thank you for giving me the cutest, smart, fun-loving, little boy ever!!

Yours forever,


Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Our house!

As promised, though MANY MANY days after here are the pictures of our new place. We are obviously not done decorating, but we are slowly making progress!
My check list for this weekend is getting new window treatments, finish our landscaping, and clean out our large laundry room closet which I am turning into my "craft" room!
I'm excited to share these pictures with you all so you can see how much we change and add!

The outside of our place.

Welcome to 492 Trent St.

We have a pretty large yard as you can see here.

Our Entry way.

Our very spacious living room. The rocking chair is going into our room once our black leather arm chair gets here.

Looking down the hall from our entry way to the bedrooms. The door on the left is the bathroom. Our room is on the left and Eli's is on the right. We got Eli his own small book case! He loves it!Looking down the hall from our bedroom.

Elijah's room. All his toys fit in there!! YAHOO!

Again, from the opposite side of his room.

And the rest of his room. As you can see it's pretty spacious.

Our bedroom.

We have a door to the outside. It also has a screen door to it so I can keep it open during the cool days.

View from that door.

The hall and our own entrance to the bathroom!

Our large walk in closet! I need more clothes to fill it!

Our bathroom. We are eventually going to buy new stuff for in there, but till then we are using the stuff that was in Elijah's bathroom in our Twentynine Palms house.
We have a lot more counter space than at our last place! Plus TONS more storage!! We even have a separate linen closet.

Looking down the hall again from the other direction.

The other side of our living room looking at the front door.

Our last name sign from Justin's family for Christmas! It's one of my favorite pieces of art!

Looking into the kitchen from the picture above.

The kitchen! It's so spacious and new!

View from the corner of the dining room. I am waiting to accessorize it till we get our table on Saturday. I already have the stuff picked out at Urban Outfitters.

Another view. We have a decent size pantry right there too.

The laundry room. I have a sink and a window!!

A peek into a trashed storage room. I didn't take any pictures because Justin's gear is all over it.

And last, but certainly not least, our 2 car garage!!

So, that's it folks!

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

From old to new

So if you are friends with me on Facebook you know that Justin and I spent the entire weekend together for the first time since we got here to Camp Pendleton. It has been a crazy few months for us. I know I've said that in my last posts, but it seriously has! We love love love where we are living! We have friends, a GREAT church, and so much to do. One of those fun things we have discovered we like to do together is fixing up used stuff. So without further ado, here is what we did this weekend.
I bought these two cute "love birds" at the Dollar Store. I really like the design on the wings and since birds are my new accessory love I had to have them! But, I HATED the color! Boring beige.
So I painted them. Our new bedding has some yellow in it so they are going to fit in perfectly with our bedroom!

Didn't they turn out fantastic? I just love them!! I can't wait till our dresser has other fun stuff on it so it can look more complete!

Next I bought these candle sticks. They were originally black and steel colored. I had asked a friend what I could do to sprucen up our dresser. This was her idea. So thank you Kelly, for your insight because I love them! I still need to find candles to put in them. I'm thinking in honor of Valentine's Day coming up I'll buy a red and pink. I saw some at the Dollar Store so in total they will have cost me roughly $10.

Justin had started spray painting them before I got the chance to take pictures of them. I really fell in love with their design. They looked like they could be expensive with the right color!
So I chose to color them silver!! At a department store each candle stick would cost $20 at least! I am so so happy with the way they look!

And last but not least is the lamp I got for a whopping $7! Another GoodWill find! It was in pretty bad shape. From looking at the plug it is probably 50 or so years old. It's so unique! My mom has a lamp "similar" in the fact that hers lights up on top and bottom too! I have always loved that lamp. It was passed down to her from her mother. Unfortunatly it won't be coming into my home when my grandma passes, but into my cousin Nicholas'. I was pretty bummed when I heard I couldn't get it (not that I'm one to fight over family heirlooms) but I have kept my eyes opened for one since then! I am so so so happy with the one I have! I actually love it more than the one my mom has, except it has no family meaning... Guess i'll just have to pass it down to my kids!
Anyway, its made out of some kind of metal. The metal was in pretty bad shape so I had to use a wire brush and clean it up. And again, Justin had it apart before I could take pictures. So the pictures I have are of it already cleaned and ready to be painted! My super smart handy husband used the silver spray paint we had used on the candle sticks and sprayed the lamp shade holder and switch holder. Again, we went with a bright fun color. We are hoping to find or make the perfect side table for it to sit on. I also need to find the right kind of shade... Idea's anyone?

So, that is my post for the night. I have a couple more things I want to write about, but its getting late and I am still recovering from a Kidney Infection. Tomorrow I am planning on posting pictures of our house thus far! I've promised a certain someone (Dede!) for a few weeks now that I would post some and I finally took some yesterday so be expecting those!
Until then, goodnight!