Saturday, July 12, 2014


We have done A LOT since the stroke to accommodate this new life that we have (right now). This list is maybe to help someone else (and to remind me). (I have to actually go in to each room to remember). 

- Wheelchair bar by toilet, in Elijah's bathroom, and inside & outside shower
- took out bathroom mats
- installed push dispensers in our shower, Elijah's bathtub, and by my sink to dispense soap, shampoo, conditioner, lotion, etc. 
- toilet chair
- grip strips in front of toilet and shower
- bought a permanent hair removal system
- bought a hair dryer hood
- bought an Instyler and Perfector for one handed hair styling
-  magnetic clasps for necklaces
- wear earrings with loop thingy (I don't know what they're called but the earrings without backs....)
- bought (well, it was a gift) a NuStep (kind of like a sitting Eliptical
- had a wheelchair ramp installed outside to the front door
- installed a low peep hole 
- have a Life Alert
- Crocs inside the house for traction 
- shop on Amazon since I can't drive
- bin by Elijah's bathtub with washcloths, his underwear, pajamas, bubbles, etc. 
- basket by front door with some of E's outdoor toys (because I can't get in garage where we store the others)
- bought a Roomba (I named him Carl) so I can vacuum 
- baby wipes on kitchen table to assist with clean up (so I don't have to go into kitchen and wet paper towels)
- a nice hand vacuum out and accessible to clean up after meals
- pill box (because it's hard to open bottles)
- stack of washcloths by bathroom sink to wash face (since I can't stand and do it)
- change clothes dryer door to other side to accommodate wheelchair in laundry room
- everything obviously down lower (in fridge, cabinets, closet, etc.)
- glasses instead of contacts because they're easier...transitions lenses so I don't have to keep up with or fool with sunglasses or clips
- flossers instead of using both hands for floss
- toothpaste with pop lid
- hooks in bathroom for earrings, etc
- new haircut that is easier to style one handed
- buy cans with pop tops, applesauce pouches with easy open lids, etc
-wear shoes with back strap (other sandals fall off my right foot)
- use straws (since I can't feel my right side I spill otherwise)
- change direction of some kitchen cabinets
- use disposable hot and cold cups with lids because left hand shakes
-use paper plates because a) I can't reach real ones and b) left hand shakes
- bought Corell dishes (for when Barry is home) to make it easier to load/unload dishwasher
- purse with cross shoulder strap 

Well, that list is not all-inclusive, but it's long. These things have slowly happened over the past 21ish months. It's not perfect, but these things help me function. (I even cooked dinner in the crock pot tonight!) We still are constantly thinking of things to make life easier. We have had to make a lot of accommodations looking over this list but I almost forget about it. It's life. :)

Monday, July 7, 2014


My quiet time this morning (I'm doing a Beth Moore Bible study with a group of ladies called Children of the Day) was about God's love for us. She addresses each of us as "Sisters loved by God." Coincidence? No. 

"I, Jude, am a slave to Jesus Christ and brother to James, writing to those loved by God the Father, called and kept safe by Jesus Christ. Relax, everything’s going to be all right; rest, everything’s coming together; open your hearts, love is on the way! (Jude 1:1-2 MSG)"

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Identity Change

My identity has changed A LOT since the stroke. Some bad and some good. Some examples - I used to be very talkative, a perfectionist, I had a good job, I took care of myself - eating right, exercising, etc. I was very independent.  

Now, I keep more to myself because not everyone can understand me and I don't have the breath for a lot of talking. I can't be a perfectionist because there are some things I simply cannot do right now and those I can do (which is almost anything now) are far from perfect. I had to quit my job (I had planned on leaving when Elijah got here, but being forced to leave so suddenly makes it feel differently.) I have put on a lot of weight and there's nothing I can do about it (i still eat healthy, exercise on the NuStep/yoga/treadmill at therapy almost every day...I have even cut the ammount I eat in half.) I have to depend on others - to drive, water the outside flowers, etc. I am now a mother (see, they're not all negative. I can't walk on my own, see clearly, use my right hand normally, etc.  

But regardless of how I (or the world) see me, I am a child of God. God made me and loves me just the way I am. 

For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place, when I was woven together in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be. (Psalm 139:13-16 NIV)

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Can We Really Trust God?

This is an excerpt from Girlfririends in God, "Can we really trust God?"...I like the story.

"A daughter was telling her mother how everything was going wrong. “I am failing Algebra. My boyfriend just broke up with me, and my best friend is moving away,” she wailed. Her mom listened patiently, and then asked, “I made a cake for dinner. Would you like a snack?” The girl grinned and said, “Sure, Mom. I love your cake.” The mom smiled and asked, “How about some cooking oil?” The daughter looked surprised at the offer and responded with a loud “Yuk!” The mom tried again, “How about a couple of raw eggs?” With a look of confusion, the daughter said, “Gross, Mom!” With a smile, the mother offered, “Would you like some flour or maybe a cup of baking soda?” The daughter responded, “Mom, all of those things are gross!” The mother cut a piece of cake and placed it on a plate with a fork. As she handed the delicious snack to her daughter, she explained, “Honey, all of those things seem bad when you think about eating them alone, but when they are put together in the right way, they make a delicious cake.”

God often works the same way. We sometimes wonder why He allows us to go through such difficult times, but when God puts those hard times together as only He can, they work out for our good. We just have to trust Him to do so."

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Hope Bible Verses

Be strong and take heart, all you who hope in the Lord. (Psalm 31:24 NIV)

For what you have done I will always praise you in the presence of your faithful people. And I will hope in your name, for your name is good. (Psalm 52:9 NIV)

Insert your name, put your hope in the Lord, for with the Lord is unfailing love and with him is full redemption. (Psalm 130:7 NIV) 

Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. (Romans 12:12 NIV)

I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people, (Ephesians 1:18 NIV)

Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful. (Hebrews 10:23 NIV)

Friday, June 13, 2014

Adoption IS the blessing

Society often thinks that adoption is a second choice for infertile couples. That having a biological child is the ultimate blessing. But 
This little boy IS the ultimate blessing. 

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Bible Verse

"In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. These have come so that your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory, and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed."

1 Peter 1:6-7, NIV

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Finish What He's Started

Finish What He's Started

By:Steven Curtis Chapman

You take two steps forward and three steps back On a journey of a thousand miles
And you cry and you pray
But you know at this pace you never will arrive Well I know in your heart you believed from the start God had a purpose He knit you together for
But life has pulled at the seams
And you’re unraveling
And you can’t hold it together anymore

But God will,  He will finish what He started No thread will be left unwoven Nothing will be left undone
Every plan and every purpose
That He has will be accomplished And God will finish what He’s begun

And it may feel like 40 long days in a hard driving rain Or 40 years in a dry desert sand
But when He’s finished we will SEE
A beautiful tapestry
And know that nothing has been wasted in the end

Oh, and God will, He will finish what He started No thread will be unwoven
Nothing will be left undone
Every plan and every purpose
That He has will be accomplished
And God will finish what He’s begun

And we’ll stand as the ones completed. By the miracle of His love We’ll sing of His goodness and sing to His glory As we tell the story of how

God has, He has finished what He’s started Not a thread will be unwoven
And nothing will be left undone Every plan and every purpose
That He has will be accomplished And God will finish what He’s begun

I know that God will finish what He’s begun  

Friday, May 30, 2014


Sometimes God can receive more glory through our trials than He would in the good times. 

"I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us." Romans 8:18

When our baby was found to have no heartbeat at 14 weeks I thought if God would give her a heartbeat again He would receive so much glory. We would tell everyone we met about it! NOW I know He received more glory not breathing life back into our baby. It took all of the bad (infertility, loss) for us to end up in Russia adopting a little boy with the exact same birthday as our due date would have been. God has received SO much glory through that whole story (every bit of it had God's touch) plus a wonderful little boy now has a home (side note: he has been a bigger blessing to us than we could ever be to him.)

Same thing with my cousin's situation, or Steven Curtis Chapman 's family (who lost their 5 year old). (I just mentioned people that have lost children but the same goes for any trial.) God was, and is, lifted up through their suffering. 

Caleb Chapman (Steven Curtis Chapman's son) has said that they've been given a "treasure", one that they'd never want, but a treasure none the less. 

It's the same with my current situation. As much as it hurts, I believe God is receiving more glory through this season of my life than He would have in a speedy recovery. He has given me a treasure, one that I would never ask for, but yet a treasure all the same. I found the following in my notes from a podcast:

"Our God is the Creator of all things. He is loving, good, and has a much bigger plan. Everything that happens will bring Him glory some way or another. My life is not about me. It's about Him. This story isn't about me."

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Glorious Unfolding

Glorious Unfolding
By Steven Curtis Chapman

Lay your head down tonight
Take a rest from the fight
Don’t try to figure it out
Just listen to what I’m whispering to your heart

‘Cause I know this is not
Anything like you thought
The story of your life was gonna be
And it feels like the end has started closing in on you
But it’s just not true
There’s so much of the story that’s still yet to unfold

And this is going to be a glorious unfolding
Just you wait and see and you will be amazed
You’ve just got to believe the story is so far from over
So hold on to every promise God has made to us
And watch this glorious unfolding

God’s plan from the start
For this world and your heart
Has been to show His glory and His grace
Forever revealing the depth and the beauty of
His unfailing Love
And the story has only begun

And this is going to be a glorious unfolding
Just you wait and see and you will be amazed
We’ve just got to believe the story is so far from over
So hold on to every promise God has made to us
And watch this glorious unfolding

We were made to run through fields of forever
Singing songs to our Savior and King
So let us remember this life we’re living
Is just the beginning of the beginning

Of this glorious unfolding
We will watch and see and we will be amazed
If we just keep on believing the story is so far from over
And hold on to every promise God has made to us
We’ll see the glorious unfolding

Just watch and see (unfolding)
This is just the beginning of the beginning (unfolding)

Watch it here: well I can't figure it out on my phone. Just look up the official music video on YouTube. It is powerful.