My wish came true! We got loads of snow yesterday and last night...it is sooooo WONDERFUL!! And it couldn't have come on a more perfect week. I couldn't resist taking some pictures of it since it IS, after all, an answer to my secret prayer for snow on Christmas. :)
It started as a frosty coating of ice on all surfaces, even the spider webs!
Then it started to snow and transformed Bready and Sollus hill into a winter wonderland.
We had to take Mariah out on a walk to experience her first snow. Not sure she was really able to appreciate it under all those layers!
It was beautiful and this morning there is even more snow! I am loving it. Thank you Lord! Such a heavenly Christmas present!
I think this picture sums up what Mariah thinks of it all!
It finally feels like winter in Ireland. Yesterday we woke up to a very frosty day and even had ice on the windshield before going to church! It reminded me of Minnesota, so I really didn't mind at all. I do miss the snow though!
Well, it seems that Mariah has officially taken over my blog. She is definitely a point of interest as far as the camera is concerned! I will try to be a bit more diverse in future days, but for now, here is more Mariah!
Squeaky clean after her bath and chatting to daddy.
I really like these cloth diapers that we are using. This one that she is wearing is the Bum Genius brand and they are so easy to use! Love, love, love them!
And down below we have a picture of the cute outfit that the Sahlstroms bought for her! I can't believe how quickly she is growing into things! I just tried this outfit on a few weeks ago and it was way too big! But now...
...she fills it out nicely!
(that's the politically correct way of saying she is getting chubby!!)
So my most recent struggle is getting up early like the Proverbs 31 woman. I know, she is crazy perfect but it's a goal, right? So the last two mornings, I have somehow managed to get up early enough to read my devotions in the morning before Mariah wakes up and it makes such a HUGE difference in my day. I really gotta do that more! I don't know why it's so easy to forget what a privilege it is to meet with the King of Kings each morning. And that He actually WANTS to meet with me! Wow...what a nincompoop I am sometimes!
I just discovered this fun weekly photo challenge and have been inspired by it to use my camera a bit more than I have been lately. This week's challenge = REAL LIFE. I forget sometimes with all the busyness of real life that these are the moments I will want to remember when I am old and sitting in a nursing home someday. So here is one such real moment that takes place on a weekly basis in our house...
My husband, being a musician, spends a good deal of time at his instruments. These days he finds himself with a little helper.
I think she is going to be a daddy's girl!
Check out some other "real life" moments...and maybe even join in yourself!
I am sorry that I have been slow about posting pictures and updates these days. I am amazed how much time this little person can take up! But I am loving every second of it! Mariah is doing really great and is a great blessing in every way. What a tremendous gift from God we have been given!
Here are a few of the things we have been up to the last few weeks...
Irene, our good friend, made this beautiful quilt for Mariah! It is absolutely lovely!
Grandma Maryann made the sweet little sweater that Mariah is wearing. It is so special to have these beautiful handmade gifts.
Grandma Becky came with us on our first walk after the birth. Mariah was four days old in this picture. It was so wonderful to have my mom stay with us for the first two weeks. We were blessed like crazy by her. She just served us so selflessly the entire time by cooking, cleaning, and doing loads and loads of laundry! Thank you Mom!!
Our wonderful friends, Paul and Ramona and their three beautiful children came by for a visit as well. The kids were so sweet with Mariah.
Daddy and Mariah having a conversation about their day.
Mommy giving Mariah her first bath!
There are lots more pictures to come...if I ever get around to downloading them from my camera. I will though, I promise!! (someday)
My "bump" continues to grow and our little blessing makes itself known quite often with great big kicks and movements. I just love it and can hardly wait to meet him or her!
Below: 35 weeks!
I took this today and am now 38 weeks (as of tomorrow).
I feel so good and seem to have a lot of energy today (I think it's that iron supplement I started taking!). I am really looking forward to seeing my parents, my sister, and my niece soon! I feel extremely blessed that they are all able to come over to visit at this most amazing time in our lives. It will be very special to share it with them! We'll keep you updated!
Sadly, I have a very UN-green thumb. It seems that every house plant I've had has died under my over-attentive care. It's such a bummer. So, that is why I am posting these pictures of my hanging plants outside my front door. They are so pretty and thriving right now and I am just not sure how long this is going to last.
So, there! Some evidence that not all plants hate me! And see that little green bush at the corner of our step? That is a tomato plant that has had its stem broken in two places but still hasn't died! I think it was given by God to encourage me! It even has little yellow blossoms on it! Miracle DO happen!!
I was kind of wondering how great it would be to go camping while 7 months pregnant. I think people thought I was a tad crazy to consider it (and I was beginning to wonder myself), but it was actually really great. We have a nice little air mattress that makes sleeping comfortable and our tent is so cozy. Plus, I just LOVE camping so much. I am so happy that David loves it too. To me, it beats an expensive room in a classy hotel any day (as long as it's okay that I look like a homeless person for a while. I probably wouldn't be so keen on it if I had to go to a wedding the next day, but you get my drift!).
So here are some of the reasons why I love camping...
(this is a memorial to the hungry poor who died during the famine)
Amazing camp sites on rocky ledges...
...with incredible views!
Encountering wild life!
(This is a jellyfish that was stranded by low tide)
Stunning backgrounds for my 30 weeks pregnant picture!
Watching the sunset get increasingly more beautiful.
And best of all...bringing home some fish for supper!
I was so excited when David came back to our tent with fish in the bucket that he had caught right off the rocks in the ocean! That's my man! And the mackerel were delicious.
I love how our Heavenly Father provides for us in surprising ways.
David and I LOVE to explore new places and find adventurous things to do in Ireland, but with the high petrol prices and us going to the States this summer, we have been trying to be really careful about spending. WELL, a few weeks ago, David had half a dozen or more music students going for exams near a town we had never been to before, called Fermanagh. This is where God stepped in and surprised us with a little unexpected holiday! One of the student's parents were unable to bring him to the exam so they paid David petrol money, money for a nice meal (for three of us), plus money to go and visit the Marble Arch Caves! It was an amazing day out and we enjoyed it so much (and didn't have to spend a dime...or rather a pence!)
Here are a few pictures from our adventure...
Descending into the cave.
It was very warm outside, but started to get pretty chilly at about this point.
There were stalacmites and stalactites in abundance!
We took a boat ride down the underground river and then walked quite a way back into the cave. It was beautiful and the pictures don't do it justice. This video is really funny because you can hardly see a thing...very cavelike! Enjoy! :)
I had the amazing opportunity to play with the New Irish Orchestra as they played behind Keith and Krysten Getty in Derry last weekend. This talented couple has been writing modern hymns for several years and one of their most popular is "In Christ Alone". I was a little over my head with only four days to practice the 15+ songs, but it was very good for me. I haven't practiced my violin that much in I don't know how long!
Can you see me? I am in the back row of the orchestra (on the floor), second violin from the right. My friend, Ramona, is sitting right in front of me. David took a short little video clip so you could get a taste of the atmosphere. Too bad there was a tall guy sitting right in front of him!
What a blessing it was to see celebration like this one! There is no greater reason to celebrate than a life entering into a personal relationship with the Creator of all living things! The beautiful young lady who was baptized gave a powerful testimony to the change in her life. Praise the Lord!
We had quite a baaaad hold-up on the road the other day (sorry, I know that was lamb, I mean lame!). Okay, enough with the "humor"....I thought you all might enjoy a little peek into a typical Irish traffic jam out in the country side! (Sorry the video is so blurry. I had it set on a weird setting.)