It’s Close to the End of March

It’s close to the end of March. The year has progressed more quickly than I expected in some ways. In other ways it has felt like time was moving at snail’s pace. When I spoke about my over and over again patterns yesterday, and thought about some over and over again patterns in my life this morning, I realised I needed to be reminded (over and over again) about God’s love.

So I took a moment to reread this and to remember what He reminded me at the beginning of the year.

We need to remember what the Lord has said to us. And treasure it. And chew on it over and over again.

I decided to link to it here, because I have a feeling you might also spiritually feel “close to the end of March.” And there are things the Lord said to you in some of the Januarys of your soul that are worth rereading, remembering, re-engaging with, and re-believing.

I hope this re-post will encourage (or re-encourage) you. I’d love for you to add a link in the comments to something you may have posted that you needed to re-read. Perhaps the rest of us can be encouraged by it, too.


Sometimes even if you’re just crawling, it feels good to remember you’re moving forward. 🙂

It really is time for a BearBear hair cut.

We’ve been told. By friends and family. By you guys. By neighbours. By strangers who’ve made it apparent by asking how old my little girl is. I think this finally might’ve done me in — the Bear is going to get a REAL hair cut.

Here’s the slice of backstory you need: The new iPhoto, this awesome software that comes standard on a Mac has this really cool Face Recognition feature. After you tell it who a person is by tagging their face, it begins to scan your other photos to look for more pictures that might be the person you just tagged. After a while it seems to get pretty accurate. I have been really impressed when I look at a picture of myself that looks a lot like my Mom and it asks if it’s a picture of my Mom. It’s also looked at pictures of me where I look more like my Dad and asked if I’m him. I know that probably makes it sound less accurate, but trust me, you need to see what I’m talking about. It’s pretty impressive.

Since we’ve taken a gabillion pictures of the Bear since he was born, iPhoto has gotten pretty good at recognising pictures of him. Occasionally if we take a picture of another baby, iPhoto might think that baby is the Bear, until we tag the other baby to tell iPhoto it’s someone different.

I usually call home on Skype. Sometimes when I speak to my Mom and Dad they’re on Skype, too. But at other times, when I call them on their landlines or mobiles, I pull up a picture of whomever we’re speaking with so the Bear knows who he’s talking to. I pulled up a picture of my Mom for just this reason the other day, in the folder of pictures that have been tagged as her. And I noticed this additional “suggestion” at the bottom:

Yup. iPhoto thinks the Bear is his G.C. (Short for “Grandma Claire”). They really look a lot alike in that photo! Which means, if I’m honest, the Bear’s really starting to look like a girl.

I’m hoping to muster up the strength to give those goldilocks that are getting blonder by the day a wee trim…tomorrow.

Feel free to pray for me. (And HH! He doesn’t want to let those curls go — I think even more than me!) I’ll let you know how it goes.


Birfday Bear

Dear Bear Bear,

You’re 19 months old today! And at 19 months, you’re a lean mean, (but not really mean) toddling, talking, grape-eating machine. You’ve seriously never met a grape you didn’t like. And you finally have at least nine teeth!

I’m sorry that sometimes

your Mom and Dad think

it might be funny

to give you one of these incredibly massive South African grapes

and watch you try to succeed with it.*

Thanks for giving us some of the sweetest 19 months of our lives.

We’ll try to be sweeter to you! 🙂 Happy Birfday!

Mama & Dada

*Please let all the worriers, letter-writers, disgruntled critics and folks concerned with the ethical treatment of children be assured no Bears were harmed or put at risk in the taking of these photographs. Should you decide to give your child oversized grapes too, I highly recommend staying present just in case. Better yet, don’t try this at home.

My Heart’s in the Recovery Room

Hero Hub’s parents left bright and early this morning. I am so so so glad they came to visit. There were a lot of special moments. I teared up when Gun-guh (Bear’s name for Grandpa) took the Bear for one more stroll yesterday evening. And last night the Bear decided to demonstrate his mastery over the skill of walking, both hands pressed flat against his belly, chin tucked in, toddling around the flat while we enjoyed our meal together. Gun-muh tried and tried to capture a picture but he was just too fast!

We got him up to say goodbye this morning and it was tough to know that he didn’t really understand what was going on.

I was teary during our prayers at breakfast, thanking the Lord for the time we shared and praying they’ll have a safe trip home to Bloemfontein. And as the Bear enjoyed his bottle of milk just before his nap, HH said “Grandma and Grandpa are on their way back to Bloemfontein. I really hope you’re going to have memories of them.”

That did it.

The combination of a busy and wonderful visit, the reminder of how much I miss my family back in the States, my sister with my new baby niece entering the scene almost 10,000 miles away yes I checked, and the hot water heater having gone on strike was enough to give me a few tears, and a realisation that I need to sit still for while. Some of these things feel like great gain, some a great part of the cost of this endeavour.

God is so good. I am so thankful that Mark’s parents were able to join us and spend some time with us, and especially the Bear. This was the #2 factor in our decision to move to South Africa, only preceded by a desire to listen and submit to the direction of God. Seeing what we came for happen in reality is awesome, and I think that’s how we’re going to feel when we start blessing people with shoes next month.

I have some Bible verses I’d like to converse about a little later, and a desire to request more input from you. Mayhaps?

In the meantime, just give a moment — with all the joy, the hustle-bustle, the laughs and the tears around here, my heart’s in the recovery room.


The Gang’s All Here

Oh my friends! I have so many thoughts to share with you and things I’d like to ask your opinion about, but at the moment I am enjoying the company of my mother and father-in-law, visiting from exotic Bloemfontein! Plus there is the issue of working on making this website a pretty place for you to come and visit now that I have integrated the ads from BlogHer. What a challenge! (Btw, if you have any design skills and would like to help make this a prettier place, let me know!)

I thought I would just give you a taste of the loveliness of enjoying grandparents with the Bear — as I’ve told you before, there is just something special about seeing grandparents and grandchildren together that tugs at my heart strings!  We’ll be enjoying this slice of life for a few more days…

Clearly the Bear is being polite and not smiling because he has a mouthful of food.

We just need to convince Hero Hub’s sister to come for a visit at the same time and we really will have the whole gang (that lives inside South Africa) here!

HH and I will even have a date night tonight with Gun-guh and Granny holding down the fort! Our first one this year! More to come, but in the meantime, do you have any special traditions you’d like to share when you get the gang together?