Tuesday, August 31, 2010

BIG News and BIG changes!!!

This post is one that I thought I would write many times over and much longer ago than today….but finally I can openly share some big news and changes that are going to be happening in the Smith household! For those of you who have prayed for us during this time – Thank You!

Dominic has worked for nearly the past nine years for South Dakota Advocacy Services, a non-profit agency that represents persons with disabilities. It was his first job out of law school and one that helped him develop his writing and legal skills and provided several very interesting opportunities. As you may guess, being a non-profit agency does have its downfalls and it became evident to us over the past year and a half that this job was not meeting some of the basic financial needs that we had. With a new baby on the way, we knew that we needed to do something.

As you know, the economy has been tough and there are often hundreds of people applying for a single position. This was a very real road block for Dominic as well. We would pray about possible opportunities, asking that God would either open the door or close the door so that we knew we were headed in the right direction. We were constantly asking ourselves - What does God want here for us as a family? God please show us what we should be doing!!!

And then one day, out of the blue, Dominic got a call from a recruiter. This was a shock to both of us because something like this hasn’t ever happened before. He got Dominic’s name as a possible candidate for a position with an Estate Planning firm in Tyler MN.

We decided together that this was something that he should at least pursue to see where it might lead – even if it was a position out of state. Every morning when we would pray together as a family we would ask that God just be very clear with us….open doors and closed doors. We wanted whatever happened to be what God would want for us – so that we weren’t making choices irrationally etc.

This position in MN continued to progress and last Tuesday Dominic was offered the position with the firm and as a family we decided that this was something with which we would forge ahead.

This position will allow Dominic to learn an area and practice of law with which he is not today familiar, but he is excited about the opportunities it will present. It doesn’t come without cost though. Part of the difficulty in making this decision came with how we would handle our current living situation and the possibility of a move.

The boys have already started the school year. With a new baby coming and non-existent daycare availability for two young ones in the community to which we would be moving, and getting our house on the market and being able to sell it in this economy could all prove to be difficult. So we started talking about the option of a temporary separation during the week – so that Dominic can go and start his training and the rest of us have the support of family and friends very close by to help if we needed. This isn’t something either of us wants to do long term – but we felt we could do anything for 6-12 months until all of the “kinks” could be worked out.

This was the most difficult part of this decision. It isn’t the “most ideal” option. Living together as a family only on the weekends isn’t what we would want long term by any means. But for a time it is something that we know that we can do – with God’s help.

About 2 weeks ago I blogged briefly about this book I got called “Plan B”. From the moment I stared reading it I was convicted. God was speaking to me through those pages. Sometimes God doesn’t give us the “easy” path. When it is always easy we often stop relying on Him to help us through. When something isn’t “ideal” we tend…well at least I do…to spend more time looking to God for support.

So we talked a lot about this….about the fact that this is an opportunity for both of us to step out of our comfort zones and trust that God has been leading us here…and will be leading us through it too. Does that mean it will be easy? Probably not all of the time. But is it possible that we don’t see the full picture God has intended for us today? I am certain of it!!

And I believe that this will give us an opportunity to be intentional about our relationship too. I know that I take Dominic for granted. I don’t appreciate all the time we have together. I am pretty sure that this opportunity will help keep us focused on what is really important and hopefully eliminate some of that petty “picking” that we do on each other and our faults. Those things won’t be so important when our time together is more “precious”. My prayer is that this time will help me to see any and all time as precious so that I am less likely to take the time and Dominic for granted in the future!!

So there you have it…BIG changes for the Smith family coming down the road. On Friday he submitted his resignation with his employer and will need to stay there for the next 30 days. He will begin his new job on the 4th of October! He has secured a home to rent for the next 6 months and now we are trying to furnish his new space....if anyone has any old pots and pans etc. they aren't using and want to see go to good use let me know! :) I joked this morning that I feel like he is going off to college because we need 2 of everything! :)

We covet your prayers during this time of transition and change. We know that the enemy will continue to attack us and try to expose our fears and weaknesses. Please pray that our hearts would remain focused on God and the strength that He can provide to us. This is a new adventure that we are embarking on and we are excited and nervous about the ride – but confident that with God –all things are possible!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

First day of school

Who is this man that is now living in our home?? I thought we had a 13 year old son and one day this guy appeared out of nowhere and our 1st born baby has mysteriously disappeared!! :)
Gabriel was all smiles for his first day of school! I am so glad that he is excited about the 1st grade!!

Elijah wasn't thrilled about taking a picture with his older brothers but they both wanted to try anyways!
I can't believe that another summer has come and gone already and that our kids are growing so fast!
Sorry about the picture quality here too...something happened when I transferred them from the Zoom Browser I use to the blog. They don't look this fuzzy even on my camera screen! Anyways - enjoy your week!!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Hamburger or turtle??

I realize that the title of this post may seem a little strange to some of you....

If you have been in my position, you may know what I am referring to!  But if not let me explain.

Today we had our big ultrasound.  I had decided again..cheater I know...that I wanted to know what we were having.  We didn't find out with the first 2, and then did with Elijah. I felt to stay balanced that we should probably find out again! :)

Everything in the ultrasound looked good. Baby was moving like crazy and so our tech really had to work to get some of the important shots. But he did a great job and showed us the areas of the brain, and the spine and the heart etc.

Everything looked as it should and baby thus far seems to be growing like it should.  We told him that we wanted to know if baby was a boy or a girl. I was desperately watching the whole thing trying to see if I could figure it out myself. Most of that stuff looks indescribable to me...so I couldn't tell at all.

When we had Elijah's scan I had done some searching on the internet and seen that boy parts are described as looking like a "turtle" and girl parts like a "hamburger". (Sorry for those of you who may have TMI here!!)

With Elijah the "turtle" was quite evident.  This time I couldn't see this myself as he scanned around...but like I said everything was difficult to distinguish. And then he put a circle around something and said "Well do you know what that is?"

Then he started to type on the monitor....GI....and I knew right away. We were looking at a "hamburger"!!! :) :)

That's right  - we finally get to say that the next Smith baby is going to be a GIRL!!!!

We are THRILLED. Dominic is still in shock I think! :) I am not sure that all these boys are going to know what to do with a little girl....but we are all excited to have the chance to find out!

She will be named after my best friend, and faithful, Godly example, Karlena. I can't put into words how much it means to me to be able to have a daughter and to be able to forward Karlena's continuing legacy to her. God is so so good.

And I have already gotten some of my first "pink" gifts today from my family!! My dad dropped off the pink cotton candy they got for me at the fair that Isaac forgot to bring home yesterday and Beth stopped by on her lunch hour with some pink flowers in a pink vase with Miss Karlena's first pink teddy bear!

I feel blessed in so many ways and so thankful to be able to share it here! Have a wonderful Tuesday!!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Trying to get positive

I have had a rough day....honestly I am in a terribly negative mood and was all ready to post about how miserable I am feeling...but instead of inviting you all to sit on my pity pot with me I decided instead to post a couple of pictures that we took recently.  I am determined to have a better perspective on things...so hopefully these positive pictures will be that start! :)

This is Gabriel without his 2 front teeth. He lost them both weeks ago but I never got around to showing how he looks.  I think it is adorable!

Elijah just cracked me up this morning. He is using a fork to eat more and more and his most favorite food is watermelon. He eats it like mad!! What will we do when fall comes?!

And this was taken of me this morning. I am half way through this pregnancy already! Gabriel came in as Dominic was taking the picture and said "Mom what happened to your tummy? It got all big!"  I reminded him that there was a baby in there and he said "Oh no...you have another giant meatball again!"

When I was pregnant with Elijah Gabriel thought I looked like a giant meatball....I guess I am starting to get that way again! :) 

On another note a package arrived today that included a book I had forgotten I'd ordered. 
It is called "Plan B" by Pete Wilson.  I am on page 18...reading while photos downloaded... and I have already been in tears and know that this book arrived just today because I needed it most today.  The premise is "What do you do when God doesn't show up the way you thought He would?"

That is exactly my "problem" today. And the way I felt today I just feel done...beat. The first 18 pages have hit that nerve to the core and have started to challenge me already in how I want to respond....I guess I know what I will be doing for the rest of the evening!!  I will share more later as I get farther into the book!  Have a good evening!

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Random Stuff

I haven’t posted in awhile…and honestly it has been crazy around our house and I haven’t had much time to post so I thought I would quick share a few updates from the Smith household!

I am either 18 wks 3 days or 19 wks pregnant today. My 2 sonograms were conflicting on the dates but we will know more for sure in 2 weeks from today when we have our big ultrasound!! I love this season of pregnancy. Feeling babe kick and move – even if it is small – is so amazing to me.

We have been spending every weekend doing home improvement projects. So far we have done a little landscaping/trimming in the front of the house, power washed the entire house, power washed and prepared our garages for painting – which can’t happen until this rain goes away!, steam cleaned the carpet in the whole house, washed walls and touched up paint upstairs, cleaned and scratch repaired all the wood upstairs, repainted the front porch, ordered shutters for the front of the house and fixed a few rotted window sills. Wow….I am tired just remembering it all!

Isaac decided to join cross country this year and has started running 4 days out of the week. That along with baseball, bike riding and time at the pool has caused him to really slim down! He didn’t need it at all, and I noticed on Sunday that his shorts were practically falling off of him and so he weighed himself and has lost 8lbs since May! Fortunately he has a HEALTHY appetite and is eating all the time so I am not worried about it.

Gabriel has another loose tooth, but this time I am staying away from it!! Because of the large space where his 2 front teeth once were, he can no longer say words correctly that start with “F”. It is so adorable. He says “tooth thairy” instead of tooth fairy! He is taking swimming lessons for a couple of weeks and is concerned about the “big test” this Friday. We have tried to tell him that he can’t fail at this and regardless he is learning something he didn’t know before.

Elijah is still recovering from his croup. He still sounds a bit hoarse and just isn’t himself yet. I think he is also getting his 1 year molars so he is always irritable! He is into EVERYTHING these days. Mostly the toilet and the garbage can. He has this little bunny that he carries everywhere and it has been thrown away and sent for a swim more times than I can count! Fortunately we have 2 of those bunnies so he always has a spare while the other is being washed.

Well for now that is about it for us….hopefully there will be more time and more to share again very soon!! Have a wonderful week friends!


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