Monday, January 3, 2011

Check out the waves...

Okay, please forgive me for being so behind on posts.  I have no excuses to offer, except extreme laziness. 

We just wanted to post a couple of videos from North Shore, our favorite place on the island.  Apparently, it was everyone else's favorite place yesterday too.  It seemed like everyone was out to watch the more than 30 foot waves that took over the beach.  It was absolutely gorgeous and I know no video could actually do it justice.  What a sight!  I think J would have jumped in if we would have let him!

We love it here.  It is nice to know we are in the Lord's will and that we finally have a place to call home...for 3 years anyway!  More videos and blogging to come soon.

Love all of you!

...Okay, so apparently, at least for now, I am kidding about posting the video.  But you can still go check them out on my facebook page HERE.

I love my little man...

I love my little boy. That seems like such a silly and obvious statement, but it is so very true.

I love his smile. I love his laugh. I love his curious personality and sense of adventure. I love that he sits on my lap and reads the books that I fell in love with as a child, probably just to humor me. I love when he looks at me, with his super long lashes, and says, “Please, Mommy?” I love his luscious little lips that he seldom uses to give me kisses that haven’t been begged for. I love that when he hears a thud that he is not responsible for, that he comes running and yells, “Are you okay, Mommy?”…His genuine love and concern for others amazes me every day.

He brings more joy to Bryan and I then could ever be imagined. I don’t think that there is anything that can prepare you to be a parent. There are so many challenges along the way (and he is only 2, we haven’t even hit the worst of it yet!), but the reward of watching him grow, learn, and explore each day is something that I am thankful for, beyond measure.

This evening, J seemed a little bit upset before bedtime. I still have no idea what was bothering him, but he seemed to need some extra attention. We read him his Bible story and another book. He seemed like he was going to go right to sleep, but screams soon were being echoed in the hallway after we had gone downstairs…I am all about letting kids “cry it out”, but this didn’t seem like that kind of night. I think J needed some extra reassurance that he could count on his parents to be there for him.

So I went upstairs again. Sigh.

When I went upstairs, I felt terrible that I had sighed. He just needed extra hugs and kisses, and someone to tell him it would be alright. He was so sweet…I am sure my pregnant belly was in his way, but he turned and clung to me for dear life. He was afraid that I would leave him again, so when I laid down next to him, he took his little arm and wrapped it around my neck and shoulder. Froggy in one arm and Mommy in the other. If I so much as moved, he grabbed me tighter to ensure that I would stay put.

I pray often for my little one, but tonight, while he held me, I felt the need to pray over him then and there. I cried quietly and prayed over this little man that the Lord has blessed me with. Not just that he would fall asleep, but that he would grow to be a man of God. A man of God that loved his family and would be an example of Christ to those he encountered. I prayed that he would come to know Christ at a young age. And then I took some time to pray for myself.

I feel so inadequate to do the job that I have before me this coming year. Bryan and J are two peas in a pod, and the thought of deployment seems a bit unbearable to think about right now…Maybe my hormones are getting the best of me…I want to be the best mother that I can be for J, and that was my prayer this evening. I prayed that the Lord would grant me the strength to be a rock for J, while his Daddy is doing an important job overseas. I prayed that I, too, would be an example of Christ to both J and his new sibling. And more than that, I prayed that I would please the Lord in doing so.

Our children need prayer and it is our responsibility as parents to offer petitions to the Lord for them. But don’t neglect that parents need prayer too. Parenting is a job that shouldn’t be done without the help of the Lord. Don’t for a second think that you can do it without Him; because that is the moment you have failed both the Lord and your children.

I still don’t feel ready, but maybe that is a good place to be…I only have God to rely on, and there is no better support than that.

Much Love, Jessica

Monday, November 1, 2010

Pearl Harbor

When we found out that we were moving to Hawaii, the first place that Bryan said he wanted to visit was Pearl Harbor.  Bryan and his Papa LOVE military history.  They watch films together and go to all of the museums (and have even been known to sneak into exhibits, but that is another story)...but my favorite thing that they do, is that EVERY December 7th, they call and wish each other a Happy Pearl Harbor Day.  I don't think that they have missed one since we have been married.  Papa even got a call while Bryan was in Iraq haha!

Papa asked me to post photos after our visit and I am just now getting to it, but I wanted to let Bryan and Papa know that you are my favorite veterans and I am proud of what you have done for our country!  I love you both...

It was a privilege to visit.  I don't think that we realized how overwhelming and emotional the visit would be for us.  We only visited the Arizona Memorial, so I am looking forward to going back again.  Hopefully this will give Papa another excuse to come and visit!

Much Love,


Monday, October 11, 2010

We are here...

First of all, please forgive me for not keeping up with our family blog! We have no real schedule, and living in a hotel does not always present good internet for blogging opportunities…neither does having a 2 year old that refuses to nap…but that is another blog post for another day!

Most of you reading this are enjoying the beautiful, cool, fall weather. Some of you are already enjoying your fireplaces. Others are enjoying Geig’s apple cider and Buehler’s cider donuts. And I must say that I am completely envious. I must be going through that “feeling sorry for myself” phase today, because I am totally missing home! But, I am attempting to find good replacements for my favorite things to keep me going while I am here…Like Leonard Jr.’s hot malasadas, and the best pineapple I have ever eaten. Not to mention the daily rainbows and the fact that the beach is fifteen minutes away from me. The 85 degree weather is something I will never get used to (fall and spring are my favorite), but at least it isn’t 120 like it was in South Carolina!

We are feeling very blessed. We are able to move into our house this week, a day earlier that we were expecting. Most people here wait at least a couple of months for housing, so I consider our 5 week stay at the Schofield Inn only a small feat in comparison to others’ stays. It has put me into planning mode, so I have been planning out our meals for at least a couple of weeks…I know I am a loser! But I can’t wait to take care of my boys and feed them real food, in a real home! And a routine would be nice too.

Bryan has been enjoying his job so far, so that has been a blessing as well. It is nice that he is finally able to do what the Lord has called Him to do. While this job is going to be very challenging, it is nice to know that we are where the Lord wants us and in His will. You can’t, or at least you shouldn’t, argue with that! We are looking forward to seeing what the rest of our time in Hawaii will bring for our family. Many challenges, of that we are sure!

Please continue to lift Bryan up in prayer, as he prepares to deploy this spring. He has been in contact with the chaplain that he will be replacing when he arrives in Afghanistan, and WOW does he have a tough job ahead of him. He will be preaching, counseling, and doing medical ministry while he is there, and is in charge of a large ministry area. Please pray that the Lord would keep him strengthened and encouraged, in the midst of trials. As much as I hate deployment, it is a relief to me that Bryan will not have us there, so that he can focus on the mission that he has ahead of him.

We love and miss all of our family and friends dearly. We appreciate your support and prayers, and we can’t wait to be with you all again soon! Here are a couple of snapshots that I have taken so far, nothing spectacular, but enjoy anyway…And lots more to come soon!

Much Love, Jessica


Monday, August 16, 2010

It's All Happening So Fast...

So many things are running through my head right now.  I only have 24 more days left in the Continental US.  Did I just read that correctly?  24 DAYS...Sweet Moses...

So much has happened this summer already.  J and I were able to travel home for my brother's graduation in June, and of course we were able to hang out with my awesome siblings...

My brother, Matt, who is getting ready to enter the "real world"...

My beautiful sister, Lauren, who doesn't know how beautiful she is...

And my brother, Jacob, who makes me laugh harder than anyone I know,

Then I had to buy a new myself...again.

And I tried to sneak the beautiful Miss L in my suitcase...

Then we moved in to our new place...

And met some fabulous new friends with amazing kids...

(Jack's Inn Moms...please note that we will be taking photos shortly, so be prepared! You are not off the hook!)

All of our belongings and our beautiful car on their way to Hawaii...and shortly, we will be as well.

So much change.  So much that is unknown.  So much that is completely beyond our control.  And yet, I have to keep reminding myself that I just need to, "SUCK IT UP, SOLDIER!"

I am moving 4500 miles away from everything that I know and love.  I know Bryan will deploy eventually once we get there.  We have no house when we arrive.  I will be over 2000 miles from any land mass.  And yet the Lord tells me this...

Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.  Isaiah 40:10

And then He tells me this...

For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the LORD, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call upon Me and go and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.  Jeremiah 29:11-13

I have no reason to fear what we are transitioning through right now.  I have an amazing Savior that is holding my hand through the whole process.  He is my advocate and He loves me enough to never give me anything that I can not handle without Him.  And more than that, He has a plan for me!  Though this may not be an easy life, or a life that many understand, it is what God has chosen for our family and I will gladly follow His plan for us.  And on the days when it may seem impossible or unbearable, I know that I can turn to Him and he will grant me the peace and grace that I need to make it through. 

Much Love,


Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Weekend with Halle: Savannah...Part 2

Savannah was gorgeous, but it was hot and I was sick of carrying my camera at this point, so there are not as many photos...

And I don't know how I managed this, but I did not get a single photo of Halle and I together!  Thankfully Halle got this awesome one while we were visiting Paula Deen's store and restaurant...

And to clarify...S.L.U.T.S. stands for Southern Ladies Under Tremendous Stress haha...

We loved eating at Paula Deen's Restaurant, Lady and Sons, and totally think it was worth waiting an hour in line for.  Did I mention that the hour in line was just to get on the list to eat???  We were lucky and were able to eat right away at the bar.  Our waiter was awesome!!!!! He was pretty stoked to meet Ernest too...

If you ever get the chance you should eat here!

Halle ate an asparagus sandwich (AMAZING!) and I had her famous pot pie (half of it anyway)...It was delicious.  And you can't go to Lady and Sons without getting desert!

Her frozen chocolate mousse pie is to die for and should be called "Death by Chocolate"!  I have made this at home and it is incredibly easy.  Here is the recipe!

I loved this store too, called Kitchens on the Square.  It made me wish I had an unlimited budget!  And Halle found an awesome souvenir there for Ryan, whose request was a funny that she found one...

And some more randomness...

I had a blast, Halle!  Thank you for coming to see me...imagine the photos that we could get in Hawaii! 

Much love,