Sunday, January 27, 2013

The Long Road to Recovery

This little First Aid Kit is what the hospital resorted to last week when everyone realized that Mariah was pretty much petrified of the healthcare workers. I mean EVERYONE! She even screamed when the maintenance people came to empty trash. She screamed when the Food Services delivered her food tray. It was pretty bad. 
 It makes me wonder what she endured previous to being home. The nurses quickly called in a Family Life Worker to play with Mariah. Maggie was a gem! I loved her. She was so sweet and patient with Mariah. Maggie was happy to play doctor with this kit. This was also her gift to Mariah.
This picture above was taken the night before surgery. Let's just say she was not a fan of the iv pole. She kept pushing it away! She got a little bit angry. 
Notice the numbers on her monitor? Let me explain. The green 128 is her heart rate and the blue 127 is her pulse. Those numbers are really the same just measured on different areas of her body. The problem is, they want those numbers to be 70-95. If you look closely you'll see pink numbers below the blue 127. That is her blood pressure. Pink is not the color that they wanted to see. She got so angry every time they came to take her vitals that she screamed. She was never sound asleep enough to sleep through it. The nurses tried everything. Nothing worked!The nurse commented to me that they never got a good blood pressure reading. 

Every shift change the nurses asked me if Mariah had high blood pressure. Notice that beautiful blue 100? Well, that was her O2 saturation. It was perfect! She had good oxygen flow......because she was screaming. No need to worry about pneumonia on this kiddo. Many times as the nurses or doctors would leave her room, she would be so sweet and using her sign language and limited verbal skills........she thanked them. They all chuckled! They couldn't help but like her.
Not a great picture of me but I'll take one for the team. Here was Mariah after her sedated testing the Tuesday before surgery. She was a mess. She cried terribly but after a 20 minute nap, she was happy. Jeremy came back from the retail pharmacy there and couldn't believe the difference. 
We also wanted to take a picture with Maggie.This was taken right before her surgery. Maggie was the Family Life Worker who befriended Mariah. Since I was not allowed to walk her into the OR, Maggie offered. I asked them to give Mariah some Versed, the only tears shed were ours. 
Isn't this a sweet picture? We were immediately allowed to the recovery room to see her before she woke. She was sleeping when we got there. As soon as I said her name, she opened her eyes and began crying. I took Jeremy's picture as he leaned over attempting to comfort her. Sorry for the poor quality.
This picture above is one of many moments where we were not able to console her. She was in pain and there was nothing I could do. I felt helpless. The epidural, morphine, valium, and Tylenol were not doing their job. It was horrible. Notice I am still in my jammies. Nothing in the world could force me to leave her side until we got this under control. Be still my heart!
This was discharge day! She was happy to leave this place. Especially if it meant a ride in this red wagon!
Dr. Rink was super nice to us. I don't require that in a doctor. I look more for surgical quality than bedside manner. Just let me say how impressed I am with him. He spoke so sweetly to Mariah and had so much patience with her. You see, Mariah doesn't like him much. He told us to get several toys out of the toy closet. After all, she deserved it. 

A friend of mine suggested that we pick up some extra Christmas ornaments while in China to give to all of Mariah's doctors. We did remember to do that and I am so glad we did. We have given all of her doctors an ornament with a Thank You card and picture. They all seem genuinely appreciative of something from China especially purchased for them.
This was a sight to behold!! There truly is no place like home.

We are at home healing. It is a difficult road for Mariah. We underestimated her pain. There is no way to really prepare for it. When she is happy, she is very happy. However, when she is is pretty bad. I hurt too, for her. Physically, the only thing I can do is hold her and console.  

We see her feeling better every day. It is so nice to see our sweetie back. Her appetite is great! She is such a good eater. She absolutely loves her vegetables! Jeremy found out this week that she also loves deer bologna. My dad gives us some every time we go home. Mariah will smell it on Jeremy's breath and take his hand to the kitchen for some bologna.

We will not know how successful the surgery was for a while. All I know is she needed this and at the very least we should have far fewer urinary tract infections which cause fevers. As I mentioned in another post, fevers can cause an adrenal crisis for Mariah. This truly was a life-saving surgery.

Thank you for your prayers for our family. There were many people from coast to coast praying for us. Many of whom we do not know. There were people from my own church who were praying and continue to pray. Our parents' churches were praying. Our siblings' churches and friends' churches were praying. I'm sure others that I'm not even aware of that prayed. Thank you so very much. 

We were given a measure of strength and grace from the Lord, like we have only experienced a couple of times before.....for Ben's spinal surgery at birth and more recently his kidney problems. We truly leaned on God.

I am exhausted from our hospital stay. God gave us the strength to stay up for countless hours while watching our baby struggle. We listened to the monitors beep constantly due to her high heart rate, her high blood pressure, her medication finishing, for occlusions in her iv lines and more. I would never want to experience that again but we would if it was necessary.

I also wanted to take a minute to thank those of you who helped us out before and since coming home. Jeremy came home from church (the Sunday before we left) with several cards. All of which included money for us to help with the expenses of living away for the week. We were so humbled that you all thought of us and gave of your own to help us. This is what the body of Christ does for it's members and you were a wonderful example of that to us in our time of need. I don't mean financial need. We just needed to know that others were lifting us up in prayer and thinking of us, thinking of our baby. 

This week I had a friend from church bring supper to us. It honestly was so welcome for me. I was very tired, and admittedly sick. I have tonsillitis. I had little energy to prepare a meal. To be honest, I needed to grocery shop too. The meal was delicious and most appreciated.

Of course, I also had a birthday this past week. My kids don't understand why I don't get excited for my birthday anymore. Well, at's not all that exciting. Jeremy gave me breakfast in bed, bought me beautiful roses and a few other gifts. Cake and ice cream topped off the night.

We will continue to stay home and heal. I'm not sure when we will be out and about. I'm in no hurry. Mariah will go back to Indianapolis in February for more tests. Again, they will be sedated tests. We ask that you continue to pray for swift, gentle healing and for her anxiety as she sees doctors.

In the meantime we rest in this promise: 
~Malachi 4:2    But for you who fear my name, the Sun of Righteousness will rise with healing in his wings.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Warrior Princess

Our day is here. After waiting for over six months for it, I wanted to say forget it. But, I knew better. We packed the van the night before, my mom drove down to take the kids back to PA the next day and we were as ready as we could ever be. It is so hard to get ready for something like this.

First of all, my washer had broken the week before. It was not Whirlpool's fault. When my kids put a load of laundry in to be washed, one of Rebecca's tops was caught in the door of my front-loader. The entire cycle ran but unfortunately the sleeve was caught in the door. It tore the rubber seal on the door. I will admit that Sears has lost my business. We bought the extended warranty 2 years ago with our new set but we found one excuse after another for them not coming to repair. In the end, it got fixed. I then had 14 loads of laundry to wash/dry/fold/put away within four days. Plus pack for my older four kids to go to PA for a week. Then pack for Jeremy, Mariah, and me to come to Indianapolis. 
We came to Riley Hospital for Children a day early for testing. Unfortunately, the test was a complete failure. They were not able to run the test. They tried! 
Wednesday, the day before surgery, we walked into the hospital and we were greeted with one of Jeremy's dad's closest friends. He is a pastor here in Indianapolis. We visited with Pastor Randy Gilmore then he prayed with us. What a surprise to see a familiar face.
That night, we had another visitor. My sweet friend Karen came. She lives in Michigan but was in the area for work and wanted to meet Mariah. Karen's daughter was in the orphanage with Mariah. Karen brought the softest lamb for Mariah and more importantly brought lots of hugs and kisses! This was also a friend we had only spoken with over the phone and on Skype. We love this family dearly! I have to be honest.....Karen was itching to get her hands on Mariah. It was so obvious!
Mariah's surgery was supposed to be "only" six hours. We were admitted to the hospital the day before for surgery preparation. The surgery schedule came out and she was scheduled for 10:45am. Mariah knew something was very wrong. She was extra clingy. We were both very okay with that.

The surgery schedule got pushed back a little. We had some awesome nurses, doctors, and Family Life Worker (probably fancy for social worker) with us. The doctors were all on the same page and more than happy to answer any question. I had a lot!!! I did not want anyone to touch my baby unless they knew how she was to be medicated throughout surgery. (Mariah has to receive stress doses of cortisol throughout surgery and for days after.) They were on top of it.

I begged for one of us to be allowed to take her all the way back to the OR. I really tried. The answer was no. I understand that but my little one has suffered so much. I wanted her to understand that one of our faces was the last she would see. Fortunately, our Family Life worker had played with Mariah for two days and was able to take her back to the OR. I guess that was better than nothing. So, Jeremy and I prayed with our sweetie and they carried her to the OR. We watched through the double doors as tears rolled down our faces. 

We took a few minutes with just the two of us. Jeremy held me as I cried. Eventually we made our way up to the surgery waiting area. After there just a few minutes a sweet adoption friend I met online came to sit with us. She lives here in the Indianapolis area and just wanted to offer her support. Rebecca came bearing a gift for Mariah as well. It is the cutest stuffed polar bear. Rebecca, thank you! You took our mind off of things for a long time and insisted on buying us our lunch/dinner. We had no choice. She has a way with words!
Finally, after a very long eight hours we got word that the surgery was complete. Dr. Rink came out to speak with us. We were one of two families remaining in the waiting room. He thanked Jeremy and I for allowing him to perform her surgery then went on to thank us for seeing value in her life! How awesome was that? He sees our adoption story!

I had also begged to be allowed back to recovery before she woke. They understood and allowed us back. It was pitiful! I knew what to expect but it was still sad.

The first night was difficult. She is on a floor that is entirely for critical patients. We had a nurse in the room the entire night desperately trying to manage her pain. Her blood pressures were really high. Her heart rate was in the 150s or higher. She cried and I was not able to hold her. Moms are supposed to make it all better and there was nothing I could do. I was excited to see that every single time Mariah opened her eyes, she looked around until she spotted either Jeremy or me. Then her eyes were fixed on us. That was so nice to see. Bonding in action!!!
Friday was better. I was able to hold her. Then we had a visit from another cyber-friend, Heidi. She and her daughter (also from China) came to visit. Mollie quickly took to Jeremy and played with him. It was adorable when she saw Mariah. She looked at her mom and said, "Mama! She looks like me!" You see, Mollie is only 3 1/2. She saw another China girl! Heidi and Mollie made a blanket for Mariah and brought her stickers, a doll,and lots of hair barrettes.
Heidi also brought Jeremy and I our Hospital Survival Kit. It was a care package full of goodies! We had a large bag of M&Ms, box of granola bars, box of fruit snacks, squeezable applesauce, Twizzlers (one of my favorites), beef jerky (Jeremy's favorite), gum, water bottles, and a few other things. She thought of everything!
We have been so touched by words of encouragement we have received and the kindness we have been given. Yes, this has been very difficult. But our friends from WV before we left showered us with gifts of love! Even some friends we don't know but have been touched with our story! 

Mariah's pain is being managed with an epidural. She is receiving valium, morphine, Tylenol, and cortisol by iv. She has two iv poles and is not a fan of them. Before surgery she was pushing the iv pole away. She is in a hospital like none other we have ever seen. They nurses are all so sweet. They offer us anything all the time. The doctors are so kind. 

Right now we are dealing with the anesthesia team, endocrinology team, and urology team. They come visit at least twice a day. Her iv pumps beep continuously. Her monitor beeps when she is irritated or has a high heart rate.  Sleep is not easy to come by. Her med schedule keeps nurses in the room at least once an hour.

Today she ate real food!!!! Not a lot but it is a start!
I wanted to end this post with one of the sweetest videos. I have yet another friend in the in the adoption community that sent this of her little guy praying for our Mariah. Maddox, you have a very special place in my heart!
Just click on the following phrase.....Prayer from Maddox
Psalms 139:17-18  How precious also are they thoughts unto me, O God! how great is the sum of them! If I should count them, they are more in number than the sand: when I awake, I am still with thee.

Thursday, January 10, 2013


I Corinthians 13:7  Love beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things: endureth all things. Love never fails.
I guess I've been putting off writing this post. However, Jeremy and I have waited a very long time for this to come. We are not strangers to doctors' offices or hospitals. I have counted how many different hospitals we have used for our kids and the number is seven. On Tuesday January 15th that number will increase by one. 

Ben is usually the recipient of these hospital stays but this time it is Mariah. Are we anxious? Absolutely! Are we prepared? No. I don't think we could ever
be fully prepared. But we begin Mariah's journey to better health on Tuesday. For that we rejoice!

We have waited for over seven months for this day. We dread it yet praise God that we waited! After being put on the back burner (so to speak) by another hospital I began to research. I have spent hours on the computer and phone. One doctor's name seemed to consistently come up....Dr. Rink. 

We prayed and researched some more. It was all orchestrated by God. Through a series of phone calls with  Dr. Rink we finally had answers and relief!

Dr. Rink is one of two doctors in the United States and the world who specialize in Mariah's necessary urological surgery and is considered  an expert. After working with our insurance company we are approved to go to Dr. Rink. 

Mariah will enter Riley Hospital for Children in Indianapolis on Tuesday January 15th to prepare for her surgery on the 17th. The first day is for a bunch of tests requiring sedation. She then will be admitted on the 16th to prep for surgery on the 17th. Her surgery is very long and meticulous and will require at least six hours of the surgeons' best work. She will remain hospitalized for 5-10 days. Mariah will be having a surgery that hopefully will be life changing for her. We hope you understand that we are not going into a lot of detail as we wish to preserve her privacy.

On this journey to adopt we have met some incredible families. We traveled with one in particular that has made a huge impact on my life. Annette traveled alone to get her fifth daughter! Her dedicated husband stayed home with their other four girls. Annette was super sweet with us while in China and we have maintained a sweet friendship since returning home. 

Also, we met (online) Heidi and her husband, Jeremy. He is a pastor in Indiana. When Heidi found out we were coming to Indianapolis for Mariah's surgery, she immediately got to work. I received an email that brought me to tears. Heidi's church has an apartment that is a 45 minute drive outside of Indianapolis and they offered to let Jeremy and me stay there during Mariah's hospitalization. I was stunned at such an offer! As it turns out, it is just a little too far to make that work. But we are amazed at the kindness and generosity of our adoption friends.

We are trying to avoid the flu pandemic that has hit the area. I am severely limiting Mariah's exposure to public. Unfortunately, sick people don't always stay home. We do not wish to have her surgery date changed. We have waited a long time for this.

Please pray for the surgeon as he is unsure of the specifics of her surgery. He will know more once we get there on Tuesday. Pray for Jeremy and me as we watch our baby undergo a very difficult surgery and recovery. Please pray for our older four kids as they spend time with both sets of grandparents while missing us and worrying about Mariah. And of course, pray for our Mariah. We don't know how she will handle any of this. She is older than what is typically expected. There are no guarantees of success as a result of her age.

We have not mentioned this to many people because quite honestly as a mom it is really hard for me to talk about. No parent wishes to see their child undergo any surgery. I think I buried the upcoming surgery way back in my mind and busied myself with being a home schooling, stay-at-home mom.

We certainly would appreciate prayers for our Mariah. Any surgery is dangerous for a child. With Mariah's adrenal problems this really complicates things. The anesthesiologist will be on high alert as he closely watches her adrenal functions to avoid an adrenal crisis.
It will be difficult for all. Grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, and friends will be storming heaven's doors for this child. She is worth it!!! Have you seen her pictures? 

I am also excited as we likely be meeting two adoption families. LuXue's (Mariah's orphanage mate) mom is hoping to drive down from Michigan for work and wants to meet with us.  Also, Heidi and Jeremy (mentioned above) are planning on a visit as well. 

As I stumble over the appropriate words to say, I still end up with thank you to a some special people. Jeremy and I realize that you cannot be out-given. Even though we would love to try! That was evidenced at church tonight. Those words do not begin to explain how we feel. From the bottom of our hearts, we are truly honored to be your friends.

I will delicately attempt writing about Mariah while we are in Indianapolis. I am looking forward to this next week being over! Prayers are appreciated. I hope everyone understands why we have not shared this before now. My heart is aching even now as I type these words. 
Please pray for this sweet girl! And maybe her Momma and Daddy.

Ephesians 3:20   Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly                                 above all that we ask or think.

Saturday, January 5, 2013


As I promised earlier this week, here is my Christmas post. Look at this little gal. We attended our Christmas Eve service at church then came home to open our traditional "Christmas Eve gifts". It is not usually that exciting but the kids get new jammies every year. They also open their ornaments and gifts to each other. 
So, Rebecca was a little excited to get her jammies. She totally did not expect to get her blanket sleeper but I found it at Target and I had a pretty good idea it would go over well. She was so excited!
Again, these are pretty boring gifts but the kids do enjoy. They love the gifts that they get for each other. 
These are our sugar cookies we make. This is the first year I did not ice any of the cookies. Our older four kids are finally at a point where none of them need help. Ben tends to eat more of the icing and then it ends up absolutely everywhere, but those are the memories, right?
Our traditional wait at the top of the stairs! The kids woke up around 7:30am and had to wait for Jeremy to feed Mariah her medicine-laced breakfast. They were pretty patient.
Jeremy then reads the Christmas story from the book of Luke. All while they sit and wait to open gifts.
Little "M" was tentative at first but she then realized how this all worked. At the beginning, she tore of tiny bits of paper and handed each piece to me. It took forever!!!
She loved her Minnie Mouse chair! It is still quite the hit in our house.
Christmas proved to be a little much for Mariah. We put her in the safe zone......her high chair. She did fine after we helped her regroup.
Kyle finally got his Star wars Malevolence ship. He loved it!
Micah was happy to get his air soft gun.
Here is our sweet Becca with another pair of jammies. The simple things make her happy.
And Ben got the complete set of Avengers characters.
She loves Minnie Mouse!

We then traveled home to Pennsylvania for a very quick one day stay. Jeremy had to be at work so we made this trip on Friday and came back on Saturday!

We visited with both of our families and it proved to be a bit much for Mariah.
As we sat on the floor at my mom's she had to be contained!
Grandma and Pap got her a kitchen set and food.
I love how her eyes disappear when she smiles big!
The kids begged to go play outside at 8pm. Like any good parents we said, "Sure"! 

The weather forecast called for 1-2 inches overnight. This is what we woke up to on Saturday morning. It was at least 6 more inches. Normal in Pennsylvania!
My brother began to help clear the driveway.
We were finally able to venture to Jeremy's parent's house. It was quite the adventure. The roads were terrible. Our van is not the best in snow. We actually got stuck in Jeremy's parent's driveway. The funny is level!
So we walked the few feet to Jeremy's grandma's for a quick visit. She lives right next door!
Jeremy's grandparents have always held a very special place in his heart. 

We had lunch at Jeremy's parents! You can never go wrong with pasta!
Let the gift-giving begin!!
Mariah is really getting the hang of things!
Even Uncle Jeff enjoyed helping her!
That pretty much wraps up our Christmas. It was fun to watch the excitement in our kids' eyes as they watched Mariah enjoy her very first Christmas! Jeremy and I love to watch our kids' excitement when they get what they never expected.

The boys love their Legos/Mega Bloks. Becca loves her Green Machine (basically a fancy Big Wheel). Mariah.........loves everything!

It got to be a bit much for Mariah as she still struggles with all the changes. She acts like a pinball in a room. She just cannot decide what to do with everything. We lovingly call her "Mariah the Destroyer".

I have decided that Rebecca is our "Sugar" and Mariah is the "Spice"  in our family! You can probably tell that from the pictures. We love it this way! 

I fixed our traditional Christmas dinner of turkey, mashed potatoes, baked corn, candied sweet potatoes, stuffing, peas, and rolls. My intention was for this to be done together. But my stove burner gave out on me and blew one of the fuses for my kitchen. Let's just say that the sweet potatoes were not done with the rest of my dinner. 

Jeremy ordered the necessary part and I again have a completely functional stove! Thanks dear!

What a wonderful Christmas we had!!!! We wouldn't change a thing!

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

The Last December Birthday

As I sit here typing this post it is the late evening of Jeremy's 40th birthday. I promise to also write about Christmas but that will be in another post this week. Tonight, I dedicate this post to my husband. He is my sweetheart and partner in everything. 

Earlier this month Jeremy and I celebrated our 17th wedding anniversary.  Yes, we were young when we married. We laugh at how much we have grown up together. We dated for six years before we married. I was just a month and a half shy of my 21st birthday. The day we married was a very cold day. The high that day was only 32 degrees and the low was 14 degrees. It was very cold!!! I remember the weather that day very well.

Today we celebrated Jeremy's fortieth birthday........just the seven of us. What an honor to see yet another birthday come for him. I admit that I am a little jealous of his very young outward appearance. I cannot tell you how many times people express how young he looks. I am very happy to share that the gray hair has made an appearance on Jeremy's head! Unfortunately, they are hard to see given his hair color.

There are so many things about Jeremy that people outside of our home probably would not believe. Jeremy is such a comedian. He honestly  can make us all laugh hysterically just by the way he tells a story. 
Just tonight he shared with me an "incident" that happened to him at church this morning. Keep reading to follow that story! I stayed home from church with a sick Mariah. He usually leaves around 6am. Since there was no early church service or Sunday School, he didn't leave until 8am. He was dressed in his usual Sunday attire of a suit, neatly pressed shirt by yours truly, and a necktie. 

Sundays for Jeremy are very chaotic. He has a lot of responsibility that most people do not even realize. In the midst of Jeremy running back and forth from the balcony sound booth to his basement office/television production room he had an "incident". Of course, he did not share this with me until mid-afternoon today. The story is that he tripped (he believes his foot either caught on the carpet on the very top step or just slipped on the carpet) and he fell the whole way down the staircase. I knew he was okay as he was standing right in front of me. As he continued the story, I laughed (a lot) out loud along with Micah. Jeremy's iPad went flying and so did he....did I mention......the entire way down the huge staircase! He did hurt his left hand. It is swollen, black and blue, and as he opened a gift tonight he let out a little "ouch"! In the midst of all of this, he still can laugh! 

We enjoyed some time together as a family. Everyone is tired but we love birthdays! We sang to Jeremy, had some cake, and Jeremy opened his gifts from us. I got him some new clothes, nothing all that special. His office is a little cold in the basement so I got him a couple of sweaters. This was after he blurted out just the other morning...."I'm done with these stripes!" I was a little baffled by that statement. I found a couple of sweaters at a great price that did not have any stripes. Evidently, that is now important to Jeremy. Who knew?

Jeremy truly has a heart of gold. He treats me so well and is an awesome dad. Jeremy definitely is the spiritual leader in our home. He is up every single morning at 6am (or before) and comes downstairs to read his Bible and pray. He sets the bar pretty high for me! I guess what I am saying is, he makes me want to be a better person.
Jeremy then comes upstairs and gets Mariah out of bed and gets breakfast for her. This is his choice and he wants to be able to spend some time with just her as she still struggles with adjustments. He has the joy of shoving the spoonful of medication mixed in applesauce into her mouth! She can make that a touch difficult. Then he gets ready for work and is gone around 8am. 

His days are long, and difficult. Many people at church do not realize he is on staff. Jeremy produces and directs the television broadcast of our church's Sunday morning service. He also webstreams the church services for the Sunday early service, late service, evening service, and Wednesday evening service. He runs the church's Southern Gospel radio station. He oversees the church's television station. He edits the Sunday morning service, produces commercials, builds commercials and a ton of other things. 

It was Jeremy that actually came to me about the decision to grow our family. Jeremy was so supportive of each pregnancy. For me, that part is very difficult. I end up hospitalized with severe morning sickness. Jeremy was my "go to" person. He would come home from work for lunch and feed the kids when he knew I was so sick. Jeremy is the one that came to me and told me that he thought the Lord was speaking to his heart and that we needed to pray about adopting a little girl from China.
Jeremy has a very slow temper. He is humble. He is tender-hearted. If he knew I was typing about this, he would probably ask me to take it out. But here it goes! A few weeks ago on his way to work/church on Sunday morning at 6am he passed a young woman on the side of the road walking without shoes. He drove past her then turned around and went back. He offered her a ride. She got in the car and it was clear to Jeremy she needed help. She had no shoes on her feet. She said she left them on the side of the road somewhere. 

Jeremy drove her to a homeless shelter and eventually the director came out. The director told Jeremy that she was not welcome there. I guess she had a history. Jeremy was left standing there with this woman who clearly needed help. His heart was conflicted. She needed help but he needed to get to work. He finally decided she needed to go to the hospital ER and someone there could help her. 

This is not to say he is perfect. Because none of us are. If Jeremy would just learn to close a closet door, or bedroom door, or cabinet door I would be very happy. He leaves one potato chip in the bag. He leaves one cracker in the sleeve. He cannot all! 

But, he is perfect for me! 
Jeremy is humble to a point of believing he is not intelligent. Jeremy is a great provider for us. He is a wonderful father to our kids. I love this man. He was created to be my partner. I owe his wonderful parents a huge debt. They raised him so well. What great examples they were to him. Jeremy's dad has been a faithful pastor to a Baptist church in Kittanning, PA for 32 years! His mom has supported him and has been the church pianist for 32 years. She also teaches Sunday school, taught at their Christian school, organized countless church functions, helps council women and couples, and is a wonderful help meet for Jeremy's father.

So, forgoing a Christmas posting (for now), I wanted to wish my sweet husband a very Happy Fortieth Birthday! I love you like crazy!!!!!
And so does this new little one!