Wednesday, December 24, 2008

CHRISTmas 2008



I can’t believe this is our 6th year of writing our family Christmas letter!  This year has been full of trials and blessings.  The biggest lesson we’ve learned this year is “God’s timing is perfect.”  Chris’ phrase for the year has been, “It’ll be alright! God will work it out.”  
          One of our greatest trials this year was waiting patiently as God revealed His ministry to us.  Chris started applying to church positions in October 2007.  In anticipation of “quickly” being called to a church, we moved in with Chris’ dad and step mom.  We thought it would be just a couple of months but ended up being there for ten.  They were very gracious to us in opening up their home for that long and for soon having to live with a newborn again! In October 2008 (a full year later), Chris was called to Reston Presbyterian Church (RPC) as Assistant Pastor of Assimilation in Reston, Virginia.  His main responsibilities include being in charge of the Home Fellowship Groups and getting people involved in the life of the church.  This position is part-time for now, so he also works part-time at Fairfax Christian School as an ESL teacher. The school is right next door to the church, so he doesn’t have far to commute between jobs. If you know where Reston, VA is, then, you will realize that this is a HUGE blessing!  God worked it out that the school needed a part time ESL teacher the same time the church was trying to fill a new part time staff position. What seemed like forever to us was God putting all the pieces of his perfectly timed plan together.  Chris has an amazing ministry at the school.  He teaches five different classes everyday in four hours. The kids are from all around the world, but mostly from Korea. They are very honest about their spiritual lives and many have shared that they aren’t sure about the claims of Jesus. They have been challenging Chris with their questions and he has been working hard on communicating the wonderfully good news of the Gospel without using all the “Christian” words we’ve all become so accustomed to.
As many of you already know, we welcomed Josiah Potter Greenwood into our family on June 28th – our BIGGEST blessing of the year!  We are truly honored and blessed to be called his parents.  Each day is new and exciting as Josiah learns how to do something new or as God reveals his unique personality to us.  We still have his website for you to visit (Go to www.babysites.com, type in Josiah Greenwood to read our journal entries and see pictures of our family), which might be better than filling up our entire Christmas letter with stories about Josiah!  We do want to say that when he laughs and smiles it seems as if the room grows brighter and the stresses of living in a busy culture fade away. We wish all of you could experience the joy he has brought into our lives.

Well, I’ve finally “retired” from the public school system to be a stay-at-home-mom!  When Chris and I went on our first date back in December 2000, he asked me what I wanted to do with my life.  I told him I wanted to be a stay-at-home-wife and mom.  I felt like my calling was to raise children in a Christ-centered home and to support my husband in his calling.  Well, eight years later I am FINALLY able to start my ministry!  One of the hardest things I had to do this year was to step back into the classroom.  Things had not been finalized with RPC, so Chris and I thought it would be foolish for me to quit my job and try to live off his part-time job at Target.  Chris quit his job to be a stay-at-home-dad while I went back to teaching. The first day back, I cried the whole way to work and kept asking God, “Why?”  A few days later, when I was willing to listen to God, He revealed to me that situations in my life aren’t done in vain.  He helped me realize I will be able to minister to other women who have to go back to work after having a baby, and FULLY know what they are feeling.  On September 26th, I taught my last lesson at Eastern Wayne Elementary School.  I traded in my lesson plan book for some cook books, work clothes for some blue jeans, and washing hands because of germy kids to washing hands because of dirty diapers, and I’m thankful for it!  I’ve enjoyed setting up our home here in Centreville, VA.  The most exciting room to set up was Josiah’s nursery.  It brought my heart great joy to finally “nest.”  We made sure to have a guest room for any who would like to visit us.  We are about 30 minutes from Washington, DC, so there is LOTS to do!

We could write tons more but we realize you have more to do than read all about the Greenwoods. May the Lord grant you a wonderful Christmas season and a wonderful New Year!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Human Teether


It's official---Josiah has cut his first tooth!  It has barely surfaced, but we can definitely feel a sharp little point on his front/bottom/left gum.  The last few days of nursing have been rather interesting.  Josiah has thought I am his own personal teether.  I've had to be a little firm with him by not nursing him for about 15 minutes.  The strategy seems to be working because the rest of his meal goes without me being in pain!  I've heard horror stories about babies teething, and I have to say that yet again we've been blessed!  He's been a little bit whiny, but nothing unusual. 

He continues to do well with solid foods.  We've introduced carrots because after a few days of just rice cereal he wasn't the least bit interested. I don't blame him for not wanting to eat just the plain rice cereal.  He is LOVING his carrots--I think he gets that from me!  He grunts at me when I'm not feeding him fast enough. 

This year has been fun incorporating Christmas traditions for our new family.  Some traditions are from our childhood and others are new for us.  Josiah can't fully enjoy them now, but we hope that in the future our traditions will be special to him, and he will incorporate some of them into his family.

We hope everyone takes the time to focus on the real meaning of Christmas--Jesus' arrival.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Can't Keep Up with this Feeding Monster


Well, Josiah will being having his first experience with real food today!  We were going to wait until he was six months since that is what our pediatricians suggested. Mommy has had a hard time keeping up with our little feeding monster, so we are going to go ahead and do some rice cereal.  The last few nights before bed he has been nursing for a good 30 minutes and then Daddy has had to give him an extra bottle to top him off.  Lastnight, Josiah ate an extra five and half ounces!  After having some play dates over the weekend, we realized that Josiah is REALLY big for his size!  We hung out with Owen and John on Saturday night.  John is a month older than Josiah and was so tiny compared to Josiah.  Then on Sunday we hung out with Jesse as we watched a football game.  Jesse is two months older than Josiah and again Josiah towered over him.  We feel like it is time for Josiah to start on cereal to help him out and to also help Mommy out with nursing. 

On Thursday, Josiah and I will be going to our first MOPS (Mothers Of Pre-Schoolers) group.  I am really excited to finally connect with other women who are stay at home moms.  This will also be a good opportunity for Josiah to be around other children.  It'll be interesting to see if we can get there on time--Josiah has been sleeping until a little before 9:00 the last few days!



*3:15pm*

Well, Josiah just finished eating his rice cereal, and he LOVED it!  He knew exactly what to do with the spoon.  After eating quite a bit of cereal, he finished his 3 1/2 ounces of milk!  I will be posting some pictures for you to watch his first feeding.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Thanksgiving 2008


Well, we've celebrated our first Thanksgiving as a family.  We went to Lola and Pop's house in Springfield, VA (about 30 minutes away) and met up with Papa T, Lin-Lin, Uncle Chuck and Aunt Melody.  Josiah LOVED all the attention that his family gave him and liked having some different faces besides Mommy and Daddy to look at.  Josiah had lots of smiles for his Papa T and Lin-Lin.  He also enjoyed a little rest time with Papa T.  Papa T didn't get much of a nap as Josiah was showing him his new talent of taking his socks off! 

Our family has so much to be thankful for this year.  We are most thankful for our relationship with our Lord, Jesus Christ.  We are also thankful for the gift of Josiah and, we are truly honored to be his parents.  He has taught us to laugh often and to stop and enjoy the little things in life.  Chris and I are thankful that we are now both doing what God has called us to do.  It has been a long time in the making, but Chris is finally a pastor and I am a stay-at-home-mom.  We are thankful for the home that we have and how the Lord continues to meet all of our needs!  The list could go on and on, but we just wanted to share a few.

We were also able to set up our Christmas tree.  This is very exciting to us because we haven't had a Christmas tree for the last three years.  There are some pictures of our tree and Josiah being his cute little self.

We hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving and was able to relax.  We've said it many times before, but we are thankful for all who have prayed for our family during this year.  Know that your prayers were not said in vain.  Our Lord has been good to us!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

A big weekend


Well, we had a very busy weekend.  It started off Saturday morning helping Mommy in the kitchen.  We baked some cupcakes and brownies for the church bake sale.  While we were baking, Daddy went to the CS Lewis Institute for a seminar.  We hung out as a family while we waited for Mimi to arrive.  When we got back from the airport,  I got my first haircut.  Mommy regreted cutting the mullet off after we had done it. She has admitted I look like a big boy now!  I was really good as Mommy and Mimi gave me my haircut.  I didn't want them to mess my hair up--that's what ladies compliment me most about!  Sunday morning I got up and went to church with the family.  I helped Mommy and Mimi in the nursery.  OK, so I was the only one in the nursery, so I really did help them out!  If it weren't for me, they wouldn't have had anyone to watch!  After church, Mimi watched me so Mommy and Daddy could pick up some fire wood.  It sure took them a long time.  Mommy and Daddy left their wallets at the house, so they weren't able to get any money for the fire wood man.   I'm so glad that they left me with my Mimi or they might have forgotten me some where!  I enjoyed my first fire and wonder when I can start helping Daddy build fires.  I heard Mommy say that I can't be alone with Daddy when it comes to fires.  I wonder what Daddy did when he was younger to have Mommy say that! On Monday, Mommy and Mimi took me to this HUGE grocery store called Wegmans!  I slept through most of it.  I'm glad that Mommy and Mimi had such  a good time, but I hope to stay home with Daddy the next time and let the girls go shopping.   When we got home, Mommy and Mimi made some of Big Grammy's famous bread.  Mimi and Auntie Doris finally figured out the receipe.  I'm glad that Mimi shared the receipe, so one day I can have some of this bread and Mommy can tell me stories about Big Grammy.  While Mimi was here, we were able to take a CHRISTmas picture.  You will see a couple of silly pictures of Daddy, but you will have to wait until our CHRISTmas letter to see the family picture!  Then on Monday night I hung out with Mimi, so Mommy and Daddy could go on a date.  They said that it was their first date since I was born.  They sure do need to get out more!  I was a good boy and took my bottle from Mimi.  I ate 6oz from her!  I might need to lighten up on Daddy and take a bottle from him soon! 

Well, I guess I should get going.  I've been pretty busy.  I'm looking forward to a day of just hanging out with Mommy and not having to go anywhere.  I sure can't wait for my Daddy to get home.  Maybe I can take a nap with him again this afternoon!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Growing, Growing, Growing


Well, Josiah is a little over four months old.  He is growing like a weed!  Chris and I had to go buy a few things over the weekend because he has gotten too big for his clothes!  We had to buy some 12 month onesies, so he wouldn't be squished anymore.  They are a little big, but it gives him some growing room.  If the outfit doesn't have a onesie piece, then he can wear 6 or 9 months.  He is still as skinny as can be.  He hasn't graduated from size 1 diapers.  As a matter of fact, the velcro tabs over lap each other!  Chris and I bought clothing when it was going out of season and just calculated how old Josiah would be.  Well, let's just say that it hasn't worked too well for our advantage! Smile 

Josiah is learning to do so many things.  He is learning new sounds each day.  Sometimes he smiles when he does a new sound and sometimes he gets a scared look on his face.  He is doing a much better job sitting up.  He still isn't doing it on his own, but he is working on building up those muscles.  He is so close to rolling over.  If only he could get that shoulder out of the way!  Tummy time is still an ordeal each day.  The last two days, he has been looking out our bedroom window and seems to like it--well, only for so long.  It's not an immediate screaming!  He is doing a lot more with his toys. He's figured out that if he touches them in a certain way that he can make them move.  The newest thing he has started doing is putting things over his face.  When he is eating, he covers his face with his arms.  If he has a bib on, he puts it on his face.  If we give him his taggie blanket, it goes over his face.  He still loves his bath time.  Some nights I think he gets whiny on purpose  because he knows we will be put him in the bath tub.  Last night, he was as whiny as could be.  As soon as I started undressing him, he started smiling and making happy noises.

Chris and I are doing really well!  He is really enjoying me being at home.  He likes all the cooking that I am doing each day.  I don't mind the cooking either.  I am having fun trying new things and adding the special little touches that I couldn't do before when I was working.  Thank goodness we have the Wii Fit or we might need to go clothes shopping for ourselves!

Well, I should get going since the little one is napping and this gives me the chance to get some things done around the house.  Please know that if anyone would like to visit, we always have an open invitation.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Finally in VA


Well, Josiah is almost 4 months old.  Where has the time gone?  He is going to his four month check-up today.  There are so many doctors in the area that take our health care plan that we picked the closest one to us.  This practice is actually a family practice, so Chris and I will be able to go there if we like them.  If we don't, then there are MANY more to choose from. 

We are almost done with getting everything settled.  Josiah's room was the first to get done.  It pretty much was done the first day we were here.  He likes having his own room and crib.  The first couple of nights were a little rough sleeping wise, but now he goes down around 8:30pm and sleeps until 4:30am-5:00am--it just depends on how hungry he is! Smile  After that feeding, he goes back down until 8:00am. We will be taking pictures of his nursery and putting it on the website for you to see.  He is getting to be such a big boy.  We have one of those Bumbo seats, and he is starting to sit up on his own.  Every afternoon, we go for a walk.  Let me tell you, he LOVES to walk.  As soon as we get inside, he starts fussing.  I'm trying to figure out what we are going to do when it is in the 20's this winter.  I think we will need to purchase one of those stroller covers for him.  Right now, I am enjoying our walks because the leaves are changing colors.  I will also post some pictures of some trees that I took one day while we were walking.  It's not the same as fall in New England, but it is definitely better than the South!  Chris made me laugh the other day because he got home from work.  Usually, Josiah and Chris will go for another walk to get the mail.  I asked Chris if he was going to take Josiah and he told me that it was awfully cold outside.  He then told me that it was in the 40's and it was winter out there.  I just chuckled at him and asked him, "Winter? Really?"  He said, "Okay, maybe pre-winter."  I told him, "You should try fall and when it gets to be the 20's and 30's then it'll be winter."  Boy, is he in for a shock!   Josiah also loves his bath time.  He is trying so hard to get out of his recliner seat, so the other night we let him float in the bath tub while Chris held him.  He absolutley LOVED it!  Josiah is starting to "talk" a lot more.  He usually has a time in the evening when Daddy gets home where he just talks and talks and talks some more.  We say Josiah is telling Daddy about his day.  He is also big on laughing.  The other day, I was babbling to him and all of a sudden he started laughing.  I have no idea what I said, but I guess it was something that tickled him. 

 Chris is enjoying his jobs at the Christian school and the church.  He is definitely in his element.  The ESL classes at the school were split up and he got the older students (13-19 years old).  His Bible class is the most challenging because the majority of the students are not Christians and practicing different religions.  They have come from overseas for their senior year so they can graduate from an American school to go on to an American college.  They are asking him some really tough theological questions.  This is definitely a ministry for him which he is really enjoying.  Things at the church are going well.  He will be preaching his first sermon this weekend.  I think we will be able to attach it somewhere to the babysite for those of you who would like to hear it. 

I am so enjoying being a stay at home mommy.  I'm definitely in my element.  I have waited so long for this time.  It is as sweet as I imagined to be.  There were some tough times when I had to go back to work, but it is all worth it now!  I enjoy getting up in the morning and feeding Josiah.  While I'm feeding him, we read a Psalm and say our prayer.  Then he works out under his play gym, while I work out with the Wii. He usually goes back down for a nap at 10am and gets up to eat again.  Then we do whatever until his next nap around  1pm.  Then he gets up and we go for our walk and then start getting dinner ready.  We are finally getting on a schedule, so Mommy knows when to plan things!  I am so thankful that Chris is willing to work two part time jobs, so I can stay at home with our son.  I enjoy supporting Chris in his ministry.  We will be starting a Home Fellowship Group for 20-30 year olds in November, so we are really looking forward to that.  Cellblock 2030 will be making a comeback!  Smile

Well, I guess that is it for now.  Please come back some time next week to see some updated pictures.  For those of you who have a Facebook account or would like to get one, we will be posting videos of Josiah that way.  Photographer mommy has taken too many pictures and has used too much of our memory to do videos.  Embarassed

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Who needs a schedule anyway?


We are a day away before my mom, Josiah and I start traveling to VA.  We will leave on Thursday and drive half way to NC.  Friday we will get up and drive the rest of the way to NC, so Josiah can see Papa T before he leaves for England to see Harper.  Then Saturday we will get up to drive to VA.  We are trying to break the trip up for the little one. 

Josiah's schedule has been all out of wack.  Before we got here, he was going to bed between 9:00 and 9:30 and sleeping until 4:30ish.  After putting him back to bed he would get up to eat before I went to work and sleep until 8:00.  Well, he hasn't done that since we've gotten here.  The last two nights it has been between 11:00 and 11:30 before he has gone to bed.  He has gotten up to eat somewhere in the 6:00 hour and then goes back to sleep.  So I am hoping that once we get to VA that I will be able to get his room organized and set up as quickly as possible and really start working on a routine with him.  The only routine that I've had this week is stretching him to not eat before 3 hours.  There were a couple of days when that didn't work too well, but I think it was due to him going through a growth spurt.  All I can say is that Mommy definitely needs a schedule and routine!

I have to admit that Josiah has been a wonderful baby through this all.  The only times he has gotten fussy is when he is hungry or when he needs some time to himself.  When I say fussy, he isn't crying or screaming.  He makes a noise that sounds like a motorcycle starting!

Again, we ask for continued prayers as we will all be traveling over the next few days.  Chris is heading back to NC today.  His mom, sister and stepdad will be traveling to NC tomorrow.  They will all leave for VA Friday afternoon after packing up the truck.  Then everyone will leave for GA Sunday.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

It's Official

I wanted to let all of you know that I got an offer from the church in VA this last weekend. I officially accepted last night and we are planning on moving at the beginning of October. I am traveling up to VA on Friday to look at some housing options and to finalize the job situations. God has been sooooo good to us through all of this. It has taken much longer than we were hoping, but everything is falling into place perfectly. His timing has always been perfect and once again He is showing it. Thank you so much for your prayers and your encouragement over the last few months. We are excited to finally be make to doing ministry "officially." The church is an EPC church called Reston Presbyterian Church or RPC. The church website is www.rpcconnected.org if you want to see more. We wanted to let all of you know. I'm sure we'll write more soon.

Friday, September 5, 2008

30 years


Well, it's official...I've been on this earth for 30 years now. I've heard people talk about how their 30th birthday was hard because you are another decade older, but I don't feel a bit different than I did last night when I went to bed at 29. I guess I've always liked my birthday because I look at it as a chance to have another year to grow wiser. This year I will have LOTS to learn as I learn to be a mother to Josiah. As I sit here, I realize how much of a privilege it is to be his mother.

On Monday, I got some very sad news. One of my friends from work lost her baby as she was delivering him. She was 2 weeks from her due date and didn't have any problems during her pregnancy. I've been asking, "Why?" a lot this week. During this time, I've also realized that I have no right to complain when Josiah won't go to sleep at night or he won't take a nap during the day or when I've only gotten a few hours of sleep. I'm sure my friend would love to have the opportunity to hold her crying baby who won't go to sleep and to be awakened in the middle of the night to feed her baby. I ask that you pray for her as she goes through this time of sorrow. I can only imagine what she is going through, and I'm sure it isn't even close to what she is really feeling.

Chris heard from the church in VA today. They are meeting tonight to discuss him and the position. Hopefully, we will hear something by next week. We will let you know something as soon as we hear from them.

Josiah has finally gotten over his colic. He has been going to bed around 9:30pm and sleeps anywhere from 4:00am to 5:00am! Eventually, we will get him to bed earlier so Mommy and Daddy can have some adult time, but we are just thankful that he isn't crying for 3-4 hours at night. It really broke our hearts to hear him crying and being in such pain.

We hope you all have a great weekend and thanks for all the prayers that have been sent up on my behalf over the years and the prayers that are being sent up on Josiah's behalf over the last few months!

Monday, August 18, 2008

For I know the plans...


Well, it's hard to imagine that Josiah is now 6 weeks old. It seems like he has always been a part of our lives. As I sit here, I try not to have a heavy heart. On Monday, I will be returning to the classroom. For how long? I don't know. Things are moving along with the churches in VA and SC, but nothing is finalized yet, so we feel it would be pretty foolish for me to quit my job and not have any income coming in. We thoroughly enjoyed our time in VA. Chris and I can see ourselves at this church ministering. The only problem is they want Chris to work part time and have a lower salary. For Chris' position to go full time, he is the one who would be in charge of reaching out to people and get them involved. The reality is Chris would have to work a second job which would mean less time to focus on ministry and chances are he wouldn't be as effective in getting people to the church which means it would take longer for the position to go full time. Chris talked with the chair of the search committee last night and just shared his heart in the matter and how he wants to be able to provide for his family and have our needs met without struggling each month and how he wants to be most effective for the church. They are meeting on Wednesday to discuss if they will recommend him to the session with a little bit higher salary. Then, in two weeks, the session will meet to vote on whether they will agree to us coming. I know the Lord has called me to be a stay at home mom, but there is obviously a reason why I'm going back to the classroom. He has a plan. I know one day down the road I will use this sorrowful time to minister to another woman. It's just never fun going through these moments. I just wish I could be at peace with the whole situation. I do have great comfort in knowing that Chris will be staying home with Josiah to take care of him while I work. He is a great daddy and loves our little man so much! He says he will even bring him into work during my free times so I can get a Josiah fix. He will work Monday and Friday nights and some on Saturdays. He was very understanding when I asked him to limit his time at work during the week, so we can have time together as a family. It will also be very stressful the first few weeks of school, so I will need as much support from him as possible.

Please continue to pray for us and especially me as I return to work on Monday. I know the Lord has a plan for the Greenwoods.

Friday, July 18, 2008

On the road again...and again...and again

Well, I'm trying to pack for our first road trip this weekend. We are going to Atlanta for Chris' grandad's memorial service. It is so hard to pack for a 3 week old who has LOTS of poopy diapers--whoever says 4-6 poopy diapers is normal, hasn't met Josiah yet! It seems like we change his clothes at least 2-3 times a day. I'm just putting things in the suitcase that I think we may need and hopefully will have a much better idea on how to pack when we go to Charleston next weekend to see my family. Josiah is going to meet his Great Gram Ila, Auntie Sue, Uncle Toady and Cousin Tayler for the first time. The weekend after that we will be traveling to St. Matthews, SC for a church interview and the weekend after that we will be going to Reston, VA for another church interview. We continue to pray that the Lord will lead us in the right direction and we won't jump at the first opportunity. We truly want to be where the Lord wants us to be--the place where He will be glorified. Please pray for safe travels and that Josiah will be a good traveler. He usually falls asleep as soon as we put him in his car seat, so we are praying that it will be a good indication of how he will travel. Please come back and visit the website to see pictures from our great adventures!

Monday, July 14, 2008

Joyful and Sad

Well, it is hard to imagine two weeks has come and gone. Sara and I have been running around like chickens with our heads cut off. Josiah has been a model baby up until about 2 days ago. Things began getting a bit more difficult. He still sleeps like a champ. The only problem is he has started that sleeping later and later. We are now around 11:30PM when he actually sleeps his first good block of time. This has been a big change for his mom and dad since he was going down around 8-9:00PM. We are learning as we go. We haven't allowed him to cry himself out at night because we want to be sensitive to our living arrangements. Dr. Joe at our 2 weeks checkup told us to make sure he adapts to our schedule not us adapt to his. Well, that is proving slightly harder than we anticipated! :-) Other than some sleeping rough spots he is a great little guy and is doing very well.

This last weekend was tough for me (Chris) especially. As I was trying to celebrate the two week mark, I got a phone call Friday night at work saying that one of my grandfathers, Granddad Freddie, was not doing well. In fact, he had been moved into hospice and was not expected to make it much longer. The following night we found out he had passed away. There are so many reflections for this event it is hard to communicate them all. He was my first grandparent to experience the sting of death with. I have been blessed to have so many grandparents who are now great-grandparents for so long with me in this life. I find tremendous comfort in knowing he is with Jesus right now. He loved the Lord deeply, and I have no doubt about his eternal home. The hardness comes from the quickness of the news and his passing. I wish he had had a chance to see Josiah. I wish he had been able to see him smile and hear from our lips that we desire to raise him to understand the deep and rich heritage of the Christian faith. That great cloud of witnesses the author speaks of in Hebrews chapter 12 has taken on a new meaning to me as I imagine Josiah's great-granddad looking down and cheering him on. He was a good man. Good because he knew a great Savior.

As we travel to the memorial service next weekend, please be in prayer for us. We have a good amount of distance to travel and it will be a challenge for all of us. I want Josiah to at least meet his Great-Grandmother Imogene. It has been hard for Sara and I to make it over to the Atlanta area since we moved to NC, and we want to take advantage of the time we have to travel. Losing a loved one is never easy, but there is a peace that surpasses all understanding when we know that he is enjoying the company of Jesus.

Thank you for your prayers and support through it all. We are more grateful then we can ever express.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

1 week today

Well, it has been a busy week! We have been so encouraged and excited to read all of the e-mails and guestbook entries. Thank you so much for your kindness and support. Josiah is doing great and we are learning the ropes of being parents. As you look at the pictures, you might have noticed we went to see the doctor a few times this week. Josiah has had a hard time shaking his Jaundice. We had to get him tested three times this week (Wed, Thur, and Sat). It about broke Mommy's heart on Wednesday when the nurse kept squeezing his little foot to get some blood. Daddy asked the nurse if we would have to get Josiah an IV after all that blood being taken. The nurse on Thursday was much gentler and just tipped his foot back and forth to get the blood. After the results on Thursday, we were told to get a special UV blanket to help his body work out the remaining junk. The doctors were never panicked about his Bili-Rubin results, but they wanted to go ahead and knock it out. We went back today and his number had dropped 2 1/2 points, so we are moving in the right direction. We have another appointment on Monday and hopefully that will be the last one for this issue.

Josiah had quite a day on Thursday when Mimi and Mommy took him to the doctors. There was a family at the doctor office who had a child who had bruises on his back side. The child wasn't allowed to be released back to his parents. The child's aunt, grandma and grandpa were there along with his parents. A lot of finger pointing was going on. Things started to escalate pretty quickly, and we were sitting right next to them. When the grandpa came around the corner and started accusing the dad of abusing his grandson, we got up rather quickly and left. It got bad enough that the police had to be called in. Please pray for this little boy that seems to be going through a lot right now. It breaks my heart to even think about this child being abused. Mimi and Mommy went to another waiting area to wait for the test results. While I was in there, the lactation nurse came in to talk with me to see how Josiah is doing with nursing. She asked me to explain how his bowel movements looked. I explained to her, and she said that my milk has started coming in. I told her that I thought it had. Then she responded with, "No, your milk has definitely come in. You have leaked all over your shirt." In a rush to get out of the waiting room where all the chaos had been going on, I had forgotten to latch my bra! I was so thankful that Josiah was there to cover me up as we walked out of the doctor office. After the doctor appointment, we had to head to the pharmacy to pick up his bili-blanket. Josiah and I waited in the car. I was sitting there looking at him and talking with him. I heard the car door open up, and I just assumed it was my mother. When I looked up, there was an elderly man sitting in the drivers seat. I told him I thought he had gotten in the wrong car. He was a little surprised and apologized and shuffled back to his car. Today when Chris got to go rent some movies, I asked him to go ahead and lock the doors because I didn't want any unexpected visitors.

Other than that, he is doing wonderful. He still likes to sleep a good bit and does a great job at night. We are excited about having him around and he is fun just to watch! So far he has peed on Daddy, snotted on Mommy (sorry no pic), and had a blow out on his Mimi. All we are missing is a throw-up. Any takers? :-)

He is working on his smile, but has got his grumpy old man look down cold. He is extremely mellow and doesn't cry all that much. We are working him towards a passy to stretch out his feeding times and to keep him away from his fingers. He has told Daddy he can't wait for football season to support a quarterback other than Eric Ainge.

Thank you again for all you have done. We are humbled and grateful for this wonderful gift from above. All we can say is we are honored to have been chosen to be Josiah's parents.

Friday, June 27, 2008

2 cm and walking


Well, we are just getting back from the doctor and running some errands. Josiah has been working hard this past week. I am now 2 cm dilated and 50% effaced with his head down. The doctor went ahead and removed my membrane in hopes that this will help with labor. We have an appointment for Tuesday, but he said that the chances of me making it until then will not be very likely. He says if I do come back on Tuesday, they will probably help the process along. I will probably be doing lots more walking with the encouragement of my husband and mom--they've had me out and about for the last two days. We will keep you posted. Thanks for the continued prayers and please continue to pray as we wait and prepare for Josiah's arrival.

Friday, June 20, 2008

A little sweet nothing


Well, nothing has been happening over the last week as far as Baby Josiah is concerned. The doctor said that I haven't dilated and that my cervix is still back. So all those Braxton Hicks were for nothing! : ( That's okay though because Josiah isn't ready to make his entrance. If he needs more time to grow and prepare, then we will try to wait patiently for him. The doctor did say that he is head down still, so that is a relief. Josiah didn't really like the doctor checking me out today because he was doing quite a bit of kicking! My blood sugar was a little high today. A bit of advice--don't treat yourself to a sweet tea before going for a doctor's appointment! The doctor wasn't concerned about it, but I will remember that for the next visit.

Well, that is it for now. Chris can go to SC with little fear of me going into labor this weekend. We'll keep you posted if anything changes.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

A word from dad

It's late, and I just finished watching "The Great Debaters" with my dad. I would recommend the movie to anyone who wants to experience the pain and hope of the 1930's. I was most struck by the role Forest Whitaker played in the movie. He played a father figure which I must say I greatly admired. He was firm and tough on his son at times, yet was not to proud to humble himself for the sake of his family. He defended the right for his son to walk a walk of integrity and did so by modeling that life throughout the movie.
I hope to be that kind of father. I hope my son sees me as a father who is firm and tough, yet loves him with all that is in me. I pray that I can teach him what it is to walk humbly before the Lord. To love justice and defend the weak and downtrodden. I hope to teach him that "an unjust law is no law at all." - St. Augustine.

I am not a perfect man, and those of you that know me at all have probably seen my imperfections in one way or another, but I often wonder is the mark of a Godly man perfection or the willingness to never give up seeking to follow the One who was perfect? I feel unprepared to be a father, and yet I feel I was made to be one. I can't wait to see my son for the first time within the next few weeks (I have him penciled in for next Monday...we'll see HAHA). I wish I could maintain an ongoing to see Jesus with the same intensity I long to see my son. Alas, the world is so enticing and deceitful it is hard to keep the main thing the main thing.

Well, I suppose I have rambled enough. I would like to close this posting with a prayer for Josiah. I would encourage any of you to pray this with me over the next few days until he joins us out here where the air is, but if you have your own words by all means pray away.

God of Abraham, Isacc, and Jacob
will you on this day please be with Baby Josiah.

Will you please nurture him, protect him, and
strengthen him for the trials that await him in this world.

Will you so surround him with your presence
that even in his sinfulness he might know true peace.

Will you place in his spirit a sense of longing
to know you in your fullness and glory.

Will you guide him towards all that
brings you glory as he lives in this world.

Will you lead him away from all glory
that distracts him from seeking you.

Will you give him the wisdom to
look past his parent's faults and see your face.

Will you grant him a ministry that will usher in the
coming of your Son and the declaring of your Name.

I ask that you do all of this for one sole reason:
The magnification of your name throughout the earth.

In the name which is above all other names
The name of the Hope of the world, Jesus Christ

Amen.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Almost 39 Weeks


Tomorrow we go to the doctor's, and he will do our first internal exam to see if the process of having Josiah has started. It looks and feels like he has started dropping, and I have been having some mild "cramping" the last week. I am hoping the doctor gives us some good news even though Daddy says Josiah can't come until after this weekend because it's not a good time for him! : ) The reason Daddy doesn't want him to come until after this weekend is because he will be going to SC on Saturday to preach at a church that is a good possibility for a position. My mom will be coming into town on Friday and staying with my cousins just in case Josiah decides to not listen to his daddy. We will be planning a trip to VA after Josiah arrives to visit another church that is interested in Chris. There is still a church in MI, but they won't be meeting for a couple of weeks due to committee members being out of town. Doors seem to be opening up, and we continue to pray that God will give us a clear picture on where we need to go.

We had a great, long weekend. Corey and Simon flew in from England on Friday, and we have had lots of fun catching up. We had a baby shower for Baby Girl Gildener on Monday. It was so nice to be able to celebrate this new life while they were here. We can't wait for Baby Gildener to arrive--but not too soon because she needs to grown some more in her mommy's tummy. Corey and Simon are talking about coming home in January. We will make sure to come back for a visit then so the cousins can meet.

Not much else is going on here. Just anxiously waiting for Josiah to arrive. We will post any information we find out tomorrow after we get home from the doctor's office. Make sure to check out the new photo album to see all the pictures from the "family visit." Keep us in your prayers as Chris travels this weekend and we prepare for Josiah to come.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

36 Weeks

Well, we are just under 4 weeks until our due date. The next few weeks should go by pretty quickly. This is my last week of school with the kids. Then I have a week of teacher work days. Corey and Simon will be here the weekend of the 13th for a few days. My mom is coming up on the 20th because Chris is going to South Carolina to preach at a church that weekend. So as you can see the month of June will be pretty busy and should go by quickly.

Chris and I finished our birthing classes last week. We had a lot of fun! Chris was pretty traumatized from watching the video on the delivery of the afterbirth. I embarrassed him on the last night when we were playing Jeopardy on the list of words our instructor gave us. My competitive side came out a little bit.

We are excited about the future and just wish it would get here soon!
:-) This whole journey has been such a blessing as we've watched and experienced the growth of a new life. We often wonder if God sits back with a smile on His face as He watches us grow and live this life He has given us. We have learned and experienced so much! From what after birth looks like (yuck!) to new exciting products that can repel "Micro-Bial" (Just ask Sara about that one!) Thanks for being a part of this journey and keep those prayers coming down the stretch as we all finish this part of the race.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Born Again


I want to take a minute to share a cute story from school yesterday. While my students were waiting for the buses to come, one little girl came up and started talking to me. She was telling me how the other day she was at church and her preacher was telling the congregation if they wanted to be born again all they needed to do was come to the front of the church. She told me a lot of people went to the front, but she didn't go because she didn't want to be a baby again because she wanted to grow up and be an adult and teach like I did. It was all I could do not to start giggling. I told her that when you are born again it doesn't mean that you go back to being a baby. I then asked her if she had another idea about what it means to be born again. She then told me she thought it means you act really bad like a baby does. I told her that it didn't mean acting bad. I asked her if she wanted me to tell her what it means to be born again, and she wanted me to. So I explained it is when you accept Jesus into your heart because you realize you are a sinner and you need Him to help you go to heaven and to do good things while here on Earth. I think she was relieved she wouldn't go back to being a baby. I feel like a seed was planted yesterday, and I realized that conversation could be the very reason why the Lord hasn't moved us on to our next place yet.

Just a little update on how Josiah is doing. I went to the doctor on Monday, and he said Josiah is head down. Hopefully, he will stay in that position between now and delivery day. His heart beat was nice and strong--I'm always so relieved when I hear the little guy's heart beat. I go back on June 3rd and get to do the fun GBS test--some abbreviation like that. He asked me if I've started feeling contractions yet, and I told him I didn't have a clue. If I had, then they aren't that bad! He said that we are at the point that if I do go into labor early Josiah should be fine lung wise, so that is a relief.

Chris has sent out some more resumes to churches in other denominations. He has heard back from six other churches who will be bringing his information to their committees. The EPC churches in PA and MI are still possibilities, but they are just taking awhile. Chris decided to send out to other churches and let God close doors on the ones He doesn't want us to go to. We've had a few doors closed, but it brings the pregnant mommy comfort in knowing there are more than two possibilities out there! : )

I only have 10 1/2 more days of school left! I know Chris is looking forward to having summer wife back, and I can't wait for Josiah to meet summer mommy. I am ready to be done as are the kids. We've gotten to the point where they are fighting like siblings. It is a sign that we need to pack up and head home for the summer. I have fun days planned for the last two weeks of school, so hopefully that will help everyone to get along. If not, there will be some who are awfully sad sitting there watching everyone else do the fun things.


PS-We found out that Josiah's cousin is going to be a girl!! We are so excited for Corey and Simon!!!

Thursday, May 15, 2008

34 weeks


Tomorrow I will be 34 weeks, which means I only have 6 more weeks until my due date. Tonight will be our third birthing class. We are suppose to go visit the hospital tonight if they aren't too busy. Auntie Coco will be going with us--she is going to be another coach if for some reason Chris isn't here because of a job interview or having to start.

Chris had his graduation ceremonies this past weekend. Saturday was the hooding ceremony. Josiah and I brought his hood to be placed on him. It was very special to be a part of the ceremony. After the hooding ceremony, we had dinner with the family. Then my parents and I did a little shopping at the outlet mall.

Sunday was Mother's Day. Josiah got his mommy a nice card. It's amazing how well he can write already! : ) We had lunch with Papa T and Granny Linda. Then we hung out with my mom and dad at the hotel. We played some Wii and had lots of fun laughing. After we finished playing, we met my gram, aunt and cousins for dinner to celebrate Mother's Day with them. We went back to the hotel, and I fell asleep while the rest played the Wii.

Monday was the actual graduation ceremony. It was outside and the weather was soooo cold and windy. I haven't felt cold in weeks, but I did that day. They did have a big screen set up inside one of the buildings, so I was able to go in there. We did go out when Chris walked across the stage. My parents left from the ceremony to head back to Georgia. Chris and I stopped to have lunch in celebration of all of his accomplishments.

The rest of the week has been playing catch up on sleep and house chores. Chris has Saturday off, so we are looking forward to just relaxing and putting the glider together. We were going to wait until we moved, but since it doesn't look like it will be happening any time soon we decided to go ahead and do it.

As for the position at the church in PA, we haven't heard anything. It is getting a little frustrating. Chris and I have been discussing some other possibilities. He has tomorrow off, so he will look into them then. Keep us in your prayers as we continue to seek God's will.

Friday, May 2, 2008

More Showers of Blessings


Yesterday, we had a baby shower at my work. The Lord continues to bless us beyond our imagination. We are so thankful and appreciative of all that is given to us for Baby Josiah. We received lots of goodies. Everything from clothing to grooming stuff to books to gift cards. Chris and I feel like we are ready for the little guy's arrival.

There has been some talk of maybe putting the car seat and stroller together this weekend. There are a few things we want to check out---how padded the straps are and how much head support the little one will have. There are just a few small things that we will need to get, but we won't need to buy them for a few more months--maybe after Chris gets a position at a church.

Chris and I started our birthing classes last night. There are four other couples in the class. The others are due in July, so we are a little further along than the others. It hit me last night that we are getting down to the wire. After these classes are done, we could potentially have three more weeks until our due date.

Josiah is still really active. We were sitting in class last night and our instructor was telling us that our doctors may have us start counting fetal movements. She said that the baby should move around four times in an hour. Well, Josiah went ahead and did his within 5 minutes. The other night he was up having a party from 2:30 in the morning to around 5:00am. I don't know if this is a sign of what is to come, but I can't wait for Daddy to enjoy some of this wake time with me!! : ) I've gotten to the point that getting up is not so bad any more. It is a good time to just pray for different things--from Josiah being a follower of Christ to having a safe labor and delivery to our ministry together as a family.

This week is going to be a busy week. Family will start coming into town on Wednesday for Chris' graduation. We will have his hooding ceremony with the divinity school on Saturday, then have a celebration meal together. Then on Monday, we will have the Campbell University graduation. We are looking forward to spending time with our family and friends as we celebrate Chris' calling into the ministry.

We are still patiently waiting to hear about a position at a church. The PA church is still a possibility. We will keep you posted on what is going on. Please continue to pray that the Lord will have us where we will be most effective for His kingdom.

Thanks again to all who have helped us celebrate Josiah's arrival.

"Sing to the Lord with thanksgiving; make melody to our God on lyre!"
-Psalm 147:7re truly blessed and thankful for each and every one of you!

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Nesting?

Well, we have less than nine weeks left (hopefully), and we have been preparing the best we can. God has been so good to provide for all our needs. Chris hopes to hear from the PA church soon about a possible face to face interview time. We have been coming up with a game plan (some call it nesting) to prepare for having the baby here in Goldsboro. Linda has graciously offered for her and Dad to stay at another house and allow Mary to move in for the pre/post due date time. This is a huge blessing and should work well for everyone. We are starting our pregnancy classes this upcoming Thursday and will meet throughout the month of May. Chris will graduate officially from Campbell the weekend of Mother's Day. We are excited to spend time with family and friends for this special time. Sara is doing well and is counting every day down for the baby and for the end of school! She has been a real trooper. Some friends of ours (Brad and Rayel) just had their first baby this past Monday. We are so excited for them and it makes our little guy's arrival date seem much more real. Thank you again for all your love and support. Each of you hold a special place in our hearts and prayers.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Baby Shower Games


The winners will be receiving their gift cards in the mail shortly but
thought we would post the answers and the winners for each game. A few games had multiple winners, so I numbered each response randomly, called Sue on the phone and she picked numbers not knowing why her mom was asking her to pick numbers, but Sue doesn't get too surprised by too much that I do anymore. Okay so here goes!

1. We'll have to wait on the Date/Time/Length/Weight until the little
one arrives, but we have the master list.

2. Animal Babies - We had seven correct - Joan Perry was selected
randomly

Alligator - hatchling, bull, cow, congregation
Alpaca - cria, male, female, herd
Bee - larva, drone, queen, swarm
Camel - calf, bull, cow, flock
Dove - squab, cock, hen, dole
Goat - kid, billy, nanny, herd
Goose - gosling, gander, goose, gaggle
Horse - foal, stallion, mare, herd
Kangaroo - joey, jack, jill, troop
Falcon - chick, tercel, falcon, cast
Mallard - duckling, drake, duck, flush
Mouse - pinkie, buck, doe, horde
Penguin - chick, male, female, rookery
Gerbil - pup, buck, doe, horde
Badger - kit/cub, board, sow, cete
Whale - calf, bull, cow, pod
Prairie Dog - pup, board, sow, caterie/town
Squirrel - Pup, buck, doe, dray
Crow - chick, cock, hen, murder
Swan - cygnet, cob, pen, bevy
Turkey - poult, tom, hen, rafter


3. Crossword Puzzle - 3 correct - Jane/Liza were randomly picked
1 often sent with birth announcement - picture
7 these keep babies feet warm - booties
9 toy often hung over baby's crib - mobile
11 skin irritation on baby's bottom - diaper rash
13 kept in fridge, used to sooth aching gums - teething ring
16 where baby's diaper is refreshed - changing table
19 newborn food bought in the store - formula
20 squeezing all the water from the washcloth - wringing
23 something you wrap baby in - blanket
24 baby wheels - stroller
25 fictitious creature that delivers baby - stork
26 used to take baby's temperature - thermometer

2 baby's bed - crib
3 baby sized noisemaker - rattle
4 baby doctor - pediatrician
5 how daddy feeds baby - bottle
6 where baby rides in car - car seat
8 used to make baby a pendulum - swing
10 baby soother - pacifier
12 baby protective gear at mealtime - bib
14 where some newborns sleep - bassinet
15 what the doctor used to monitor baby's size - growth chart
17 shoulder protection during mealtime - burp cloth
18 device to make toddler mobile - walker
21 baby's clothing worn under the "real" outfit - onesie
22 was the most missed - to protect baby, sometimes negative - CODDLE

4.Baby Name Search - 13 correct - Kristen Martin was randomly selected

5. Toilet Paper Game - Sara is 10.5 sheets around

Kim Kellam guessed 11. Other responses ranged from 12 - 50!

6. Bible Babies - 5 correct - Ellen and Amelia were randomly selected
Note to all: Ellen's boss Dr. Dan was the one who actually did the test,
but since it seems many sought outside help, we didn't disqualify her...
good going Dr. Dan!

Isaac - Abraham & Sarah
Ishmael - Abraham and Hagar
Jesus - Joseph & Mary
John - Zechariah and Elizabeth
Joseph - Jacob & Rebecca
Cain - Adam & Eve
Joel - Son of Samuel
David - Son of Jesse
Josiah - Son of Amon
Judah - Jacob & Leah
Esther - Daughter of Abihail
Rachel - Daughter of Laban
Joseph - Jacob & Rachel
Aaron - Amram and Jochebed
Sarah - Daughter of Asher
Noah - Son of Lamech
Johan - Son of Shimeah
Rehoboam - Son of Solomon
Nehemiah - Son of Hachaliah
Rebecca - Daugther of Bethuel

7. The Diaper/Candy Game - 6 correct - Doris/Jaycee were randomly
selected

3 Musketeer Mint - Sheryl Amegin, Brooke Davis, Rayel, Ginger
Butterfinger - Doris Martin, Chris Royea, Ellen Ryan, Nancy Milne
Reese's Peanut Butter Cup - Holly Freeling, Wendy Martin, Heather
Halter, Celeste Vernon
Rolo - LaNae Johnson, Molly Perry, Stephanie Spencer, Heidi Royea
Snicker's - Becky O'Connor, Sonya Spaulding, Kristen Murphy, Jane Perry
Mounds - Kim Kellam, Tami Royea
5th Avenue - Joan Perry, Nan Nye, Kristen Martin, Bethany Fox

8. The Words you could make out of Josiah Potter Greenwood - Winner Chris Royea with a an honorable mention to Stephanie Spencer and Heather Halter. Longest word was from Joan Perry - 9 letters

9. What is Sara Wearing - Heather Halter

Heather guessed a green shirt with black capris. Sara was wearing a
green and white top with black capris.

Thanks again for making this special time for Sara and Chris so much
fun!

Mary

Saturday, April 12, 2008

It's Raining, It's Pouring


Chris and I had our virtual baby shower last night, and we again are overwhelmed by the blessings of our family and friends! We are so appreciative of all the gifts that have been sent to Josiah. We had LOTS of fun playing the games with you. Chris used his new video camera to record the fun we were having. The file will be too big to download on the website, but we will put some still pictures in an album for you to see.

We are so thankful for all the gifts that were given to us. Josiah's nursery is ready to put together now that we have his rocking chair, bedding set, mobile and hamper. Now, we just need to find him a nursery! : ) We are praying that it will be sooner than later, but know that God will have us move when He is ready.

We look forward to dressing Josiah in all the adorable clothing that we received. It's hard to image someone that small fitting into it! We can't wait to cuddle him in his new blankets and to play with him on some of the bigger floor blankets we received. Bath time will be a big splash when we use his new bath seat and wash clothes we received. I'm sure that Josiah will get use out of his new swing when he has his "wake time" (aka-crying time). We look forward to putting him in his bebe seat as he learns to sit up and when we have special picnics in the living room on rainy days. Daddy looks forward to reading the new books we got--Josiah already loves reading time with Daddy. I look forward to when Daddy uses the bottle warmer so Mommy can have a night here and there without having to get up! : ) We look forward to worshiping with Josiah with his new worship/lullaby CD and capturing memories in his photo album and journal. We also appreciate all the gift cards we received. I'm sure there will be plenty of things we will need to purchase--um, more diapers--after he is born. : )

Again, we want to thank you for celebrating Josiah's upcoming arrival and helping us to prepare for our precious little gift. You will never know how truly grateful we are to all of you!

"Sing to the Lord with thanksgiving; make melody to our God on lyre!"
-Psalm 147:7

Saturday, April 5, 2008

First Plane Ride


Well, we had our first plane ride to Georgia this weekend as a family. It is probably the only time people will be excited to see Josiah get on a plane with us! : )

Chris and I had an enjoyable flight after having a little bit of a delay due to weather. It was a little warm for the Mommy, but after taking some layers off and putting the air on me, I did just fine. I guess this is a sign of what is to come when I go through menopause. Poor Chris!

We spent Friday morning in Fitzgerald, so Chris could get his eyes checked and get some new glasses. Mommy and Mimi did a little shopping for some cooler clothes. We ate some lunch, then headed back to Valdosta to have an ultrasound done at the Pregnancy Support Center. Tayler and Mimi came along to meet Josiah. Tayler thought it was neat to see her cousin. Josiah was "blowing us kisses" during the ultrasound and was giving Mommy some good punches and kicks. It still amazes us how God has created this little guy! After the ultrasound, we did a little more shopping at a maternity consignment shop and found some more cooler clothes. I have a need for cooler clothes because the school system I work for won't turn on the air conditioning for a few more weeks even though the weather has been in the upper 70's and lower 80's. After shopping, we came home and hung out for a little while before we got ready for the rehearsal dinner. It was so nice to see Ellis and Jenny and to celebrate their love for each other. When we got home from the rehearsal dinner, Mommy went to bed and Daddy decided to take some time to unwind by playing the Wii.

I will take a few minutes to update you on Chris' position search. He had a phone interview a little over a week ago with a church in Pennsylvania. The next afternoon, they called to tell us that Chris was their first choice. They said that they had a lot of things going on at the church this week, but they would be getting back with us to let us know what the next step would be. We are excited about this position, Pastor of Student Ministries, and how God could use us at this church. We are excited about the potential move to Slippery Rock, Pennsylvania. We will keep you posted on the position. Please continue to pray that this will all work out before Josiah makes his entrance into the world.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Shower of Blessings

It's been a while since I've written an entry (Chris typing), but I wanted to share how extremely thankful Sara and I are for the generosity of those who came to our first baby shower. I wasn't able to go to the shower yesterday, but when I saw all of the gifts when I got home, I was struck by just how good God is. As new parents embarking on the new adventure of raising a child, each and every gift is a blessing and an opportunity to give to our child. Those of you that know me best won't be surprised to see my next sentence. To me, showers are a chance for the newest Greenwood to enjoy many things his stingy ol' dad would be too cheap to get him! :-) I look forward to many days and nights of watching Josiah sleep in his crib surrounded by his new froggy friends (including Pickles the Frog). Sara and I look forward to stylishly and comfortably carrying him around in the Baby Bjorn and the travel system stroller. We know we will be able to keep an eye on him using the reflection mirror as he stylishly rides in our car with sun blockers and the car seat protector with detachable tote. :-) I'm sure he will spend many hours playing on his new play mat wonderland and listening to his ABC's and chimes. We have some new books to read to him along with his first New Beginnings Bible. He has clothes and diapers, wipes and bath toys, bottles and lots of other wonderful things. He has a changing table and a diaper champ to put all those diapers his mom will be changing....don't tell Sara I said that! Josiah's hand painted chair is a beautiful work of art, which we hope will last many years to come. The signed frame will hang on his nursery wall as a reminder of God's goodness through those who love, pray for, and are excited about this new one's entry into the world. Our hearts are full of gratitude for every gift because it reminds us of each person who gave to our son. Thanks to all of you for your support and kindness.

"Sing to the Lord with thanksgiving; make melody to our God on lyre!"
-Psalm 147:7

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Human Trampoline


Well, Josiah is getting quite the personality, even in the womb. Sunday night Chris and I were coming home from a Bible study group. The whole time we were there, Josiah had some body part up between my lungs. Well, when we got in the car to come home, he decided he was going to stretch out. When he did this, he had a part up between my lungs and another body part jumping on my bladder. Did I mention that I had to go to the bathroom? Josiah and I had a little talk, and I told him, "I'm gonna get you if you don't stop." Right on cue the little guy gave me the strongest "punch" he had ever given me. He actually brought tears to my eyes. Chris started laughing and wanted to know who had just won that battle.

Well, Josiah continued to have a body part up between my lungs, so when I got home I decided to try putting an ice pack on my stomach. I had read in a magazine that babies don't like the cold. Sometimes they will put an ice pack on your stomach if your baby is breech and needs to turn around. I figured I would try out this theory--at this point I was desperate to breath with some ease. Within 15 minutes, Josiah had moved himself from my lungs and everyone was getting along again.

It just amazes me how this little guy already has his own personality. He really loves to move around and be active. I'm not sure if this is a good sign of what is to come, but we will take whatever the good Lord gives us. I can't believe that Friday we will be 25 weeks along with 15 more weeks until our due date.

Please be in prayer this week as we have been in contact with a church in PA. Chris talked to the pastor yesterday after taking the weekend to pray about the position. We have decided that we want to put our name in the hat to be considered for the position. They said that they will let us know something by the end of the week on what will happen next. We just pray for continued wisdom on what God wants us to do.

"For the Lord gives wisdom..." -Proverbs 2:3a

Friday, February 29, 2008

23 Weeks


Well, today is Josiah's 23rd week of life. According to the Baby Center webpage he is around 11 inches long and weighs a little over a pound--the weight of a large mango.

Josiah is really starting to kick and punch. They are hard enough that Daddy can feel them on a regular basis. Josiah is already starting to get his own little personality even in the womb. He likes it when Mommy gets home from work and puts her feet up for a little bit. He really starts moving around. He likes when Daddy reads him bedtime stories and his devotional. He has even started moving around when his Mimi calls him on the phone. He still likes going to church and listening to the music. I'm still praying that he will have his daddy's musical abilities. We are excited to meet this little guy, but want him to stay put for awhile longer.

Chris has sent out two more resumes. One to a church in Ann Arbor, MI and the other in a small town in TN. We've heard from the churches in TX and Omaha. Both said, "No." We weren't upset about it because we desire to be where the Lord wants us. We have come up with "Plan B" if a position at a church doesn't pan out.

We hope everyone is doing well. We thank you for all the prayers that you have lifted up on our behalf. Know that prayers are lifted up in return for you.

"Let them praise his name with dancing, making melody to him with tambourine and lyre!" -Psalm 149:3

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Test Day


Today, Chris has headed to Durham to take his written ordination exams. He will be taking three exams with the longest one lasting two hours. He might take all three today, but looks like he will split them up between today and tomorrow. Once he takes these exams, he will be another step closer to being ordained. We are praying that he will pass them on the first try. If he doesn't, he will have to wait a few weeks before he can take them again.


We are still waiting to hear from a couple of churches that have Chris' resume. They have a few more weeks of accepting applications, so it will be a little while before we hear anything. We just continue to pray that God will place us where He wants us. From the get go, we've said we will go wherever He wants us.

On Monday, we got to hear Josiah's hearbeat again. We also got to hear him moving around, along with me laughing. Things are looking good and I'm doing a good job on my weight gain--praise the Lord!

This past weekend my family came into to town for a visit. Tayler and my mom came for "Girl's Weekend." We did crafts and just hung out. My mom and I made a floor quilt for Josiah to play on. I made his name out of some fun scrapbook paper and framed it. My mom made a fleece frog blanket for Josiah to snuggle with.

We tried all weekend for Tayler and Mimi to feel Josiah moving, but he was playing his game of hide-and-seek. He did that for the longest time with his Daddy, but Chris finally got to feel him move a couple of weekends ago. I guess he didn't want to share all of his new tricks at one time.

That's all that is going on in the Greenwood Family. Please continue to pray for us as wait patiently for the Lord's calling on our life.

"For I know the plans I have for you, " declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."
-Jeremiah 29:11

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

My Little Flutterfly


Well, Josiah has become more active. His new nickname from his Mommy is "Little Flutterfly." There are a few things that will get him a fluttering in my belly. He likes to listen to Chris Tomlin and Casting Crowns. If I turn them off, he will start to move around until we turn them back on or he just gets plain tired. He likes when we go to church and we are singing songs. I think he is going to be musical like his Daddy. I might need to stop singing so he has a chance to have good musical skills unlike me! He likes when his Daddy reads stories to him at night before we go to bed.

His newest trick is putting his feet or hands right below my lungs and pushing up. We've had some discussions about how it is too soon for him to be up in my lungs taking my breath away. I told Josiah that he needs to enjoy all the space he has because in a few more weeks it's going to be tight in there. Some days I just have to put a little pressure where he is poking me and he moves away. I think he wants to let me know that he's still in there.

Overall, we are doing great. Chris and I are still praying for a position at a church and continue to have faith that the Lord will provide for us. His time table is perfect and He knows what He is doing. Chris will be taking his written exams on February 20th and 21st. Please pray that all will go well, and he will pass on the first try.

"Let them praise his name with dancing, making melody to him with tambourine and lyre!"

Psalm 149:3

Thursday, January 31, 2008

No longer my own


Tomorrow, I will be 19 weeks--almost halfway there! The last week or so I've realized that my body is no longer my own. Gone are the nights where I sleep on my stomach and back. Instead they are replaced with sleeping on my sides because that is what is best for the baby and me. Gone are the nights where I sleep the whole night through. They are replaced with visits to the bathroom and gentle flutters from my little "flutterfly." Gone are the meals where I eat whatever I want and how much I want. Instead, I am making healthier choices for me and the baby, so he gets all the nutrients that he needs and so I don't get heartburn.

Even though I've had to make some changes in my life, I can say it is all worth it. I don't mind making the sacrifices to do what is right for Josiah. If Jesus was willing to sacrifice his life so we can have abundant life, then I can sacrifice a few months of changes so Josiah can have a chance to start life healthy. As I've written that thought, I've realized that the sacrifices aren't going to stop after he is born, but I'm more than ready to make those sacrifices. I'm ready because for the longest time I've desired to be a mom and to fulfill the calling God has given me.

"I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called." --Ephesians 4:1

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Why Josiah?


In the Old Testament of the Bible, there are two books called Kings (1 & 2 Kings to be exact). These books are filled with...you guessed it, kings! If you read these two books closely you will soon find out that many of the kings were not very good ones. About half way through 1 Kings, the country known as Israel divides into two kingdoms. One retains the name Israel and the other is called Judah. Judah has a mixed history when it comes to its kings. Some were good and some were bad. One of the best kings Judah had was named Hezekiah. He was king during the time of another Bible person with a book named after them, Isaiah. Hezekiah was a Godly man and did all he could to lead his people in the ways of the Lord. We considered Hezekiah as a name for our firstborn son, but neither Sara nor I felt like Hezekiah was quite right. After Hezekiah died, the worst king in Judah's history came along. His name was Manasseh. After Manasseh came his son, Amon, who followed in the footsteps of his father and was another horrible king. After Amon was killed, his son came to power. His name was Josiah. He was the great-grandson of Hezekiah. He was only 8 years old when he began to rule, but like his great-grandfather he was a great man who sought to do what was right in the eyes of the Lord. He was guided by another Bible person and book title holder, Jeremiah.

Family and friends, there is no greater prayer for Sara and I than to have our child grow up and seek to do what is right in the eyes of the Lord. Josiah will be raised hearing the story of his namesake. We will teach him, pray for and with him, and model for him what it means and looks like to walk rightly before the Lord. We will do this with constant guidance and time with the Lord. We only get one shot at life and only one lifetime to pour ourselves into any children the Lord blesses us to care for. Josiah did not have a Godly father or grandfather and yet God is faithful to honor the heritage of Hezekiah. My prayer is that our legacy does not skip generations, but continues on down to nurture those who come after us into the faith of the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.

The Bible is a book rich with heritage and history, but it is chiefly a book telling of the glory of God. This glory is displayed through the loving sacrifice of his Son, Jesus Christ, on a jagged, horrible cross almost 2,000 years ago. While I know that for many of us sitting down to read the Bible can seem overwhelming, maybe we could all try to read it a little bit more. Could I ask you to start with the story of Josiah's namesake? His story is found in 2 Kings chapter 22 thru chapter 23 verse 30.

As I said earlier, Josiah will know this story from the Bible. Will you?

Shalom,

Chris & Sara

"Before him (Josiah) there was no king like him, who turned to the Lord with all his heart, with all his soul, and with all his might, according to the Law of Moses, nor did any like him arise after him."

2 Kings 23:25

Monday, January 21, 2008

It's a...


We just got back from our ultrasound and found out that we will be welcoming Josiah Potter Greenwood to our family. That's right, we are having a boy!

Josiah wasn't very willing to show himself at the beginning of the ultrasound, but the nurse continued to take measurements. Part way through the ultrasound she said she knew what we were going to have, and she said, "It's a boy!" Throughout the rest of the ultrasound, Josiah wouldn't stop showing his "business" or "spear" as some have been known to call it (Uncle Todd).

We were very excited to hear that we are having a boy, but more importantly we were excited to hear that he looks healthy.

"And he (Josiah) did what was right in the eyes of the Lord, and walked in the ways of David his father; and he did not turn aside to the right hand or to the left." --2 Chronicles 34:2

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Almost 16 weeks


Well, I went to the doctor on Monday to have some blood taken for some tests. I think it is my least favorite thing when I go see the doctor. Actually, getting on the scale might tie with with it! I am actually doing well weight wise, which I've been praying about since I tend to gain weight easily. I've been making healthier choices for meals and snacks. The Lord has taken away my cravings for sweets--I say the Lord because I definitely wouldn't give up sweets on my own!

I got to hear the heart beat again while I was there. I think it is my new favorite sound to hear. Baby Greenwood decided to play his game of hide and seek with the doctor again. We will go back on the 21st for an ultrasound to hopefully see what we are having. We will post some pictures and a journal entry on that day, so come back for a visit then.

"Let us come into His presence with thanksgiving; let us make a joyful noise to Him with songs of praise!" --Psalm 95:2

Thursday, January 3, 2008

New Year, New Beginnings


Well, I'm a litte late on writing a New Year journal entry, but I slept the rest of 2007 away. Chris and I were traveling back from Georgia and spent the night in a small little town in South Carolina on New Year's Eve. We went out to eat and then headed back to the hotel. Once I got in my pajamas, I was out for the night. I'm still trying to figure out how to bottle up the hormones that make you so sleepy during pregnancy. Chris stayed up to watch some football, so we were both happy in what we were doing.

January will be a busy month for the Greenwood family. Chris will be turning 30 in just a few more days. We don't talk much about that around here because someone is not ready to be turning the BIG 30.

Please continue to pray as Chris gets ready to take his written exams. He will be taking four exams that last around 3 hours each over a 3 day period. This is really the next big step in finding a position at a church.

He hopes to have the exams taken by the end of the month. He will also be preaching in a couple of Sundays at the EPC church in Durham, so we will go over there for the weekend. There is also a presbytery meeting at the end of the month we will go to in Charlotte. Chris and I will be attending so we can talk with some people about possible church positions. Please continue to pray for us--that Chris will find a position at a church within in the next few months. We are open to move anywhere, but there is a strong pull for a Georgia move and staying in North Carolina. We will just have to wait and see where the Lord puts us. I know we are both very excited about starting the next chapter in our lives--Chris being in full time ministry and me being a stay-at-home-mom and supportive wife to Chris.

Baby Greenwood has been a little busy himself. He is finally in the second trimester. At our last doctor appointment, he was being a little stinker for the doctor. The doctor briefly and faintly heard his heartbeat, but Baby Greenwood wasn't sticking around for long. The doctor was trying to find the heartbeat again, so I could hear it. Well, Baby Greenwood was on the move and must have been moving all around because the doctor was searching all over my belly to hear the heartbeat again. Baby Greenwood must have gotten tired of moving around or figured he might as well get this visit over with and cooperated with the doctor. It brought such joy to my heart to hear his little heartbeat. I haven't felt him move yet, so I'm looking forward to that day. Hopefully, I will feel him "flutter" some time this month. I've gotten over morning sickness, which I praise the Lord for. I was able to enjoy food during the Christmas holidays unlike the Thanksgiving holidays. I'm starting to get more of a belly bump that others are noticing, so I'm feeling a little more pregnant each day.

Well, we hope that everyone has a Happy New Year. We pray that the Lord will bless you beyond your wildest imagination and that you will seek His will for 2008!

"For I know the plans I have for you, " declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."

-Jeremiah 29:11