Monday, August 31, 2009

Move along now. Nothing to see here.

I'm not showing, yet.
But, I thought I'd go ahead and start documenting the expansion.
There's some sick part in all of us that enjoys seeing women grow to cartoon-like proportions.
There are no guarantees I'll keep posting them when I'm a whale though.
Just letting you know up front.



Sunday, August 30, 2009

The Nelsons

I just wanted to write about some of my favorite people, the Nelsons.

I met Justin and Victoria through Cornerstone in Boulder.
They were in college and dating and looked like they were MAYBE 16 years old.
They're from California.
Justin said funny things like, "stoked" and "wicked".
Victoria is seriously one of the most beautiful people I know.
And she's going to hate some of the pictures I posted of her.
But, my hair in the pictures is WAY worse than any of the pictures of her. :)
She's one of those people who can make t-shirts and sweats look cute.
See? I don't lie.

I got to know them while volunteering with the youth group.
Vic and I led a Bible study with 6th grade girls.
It was a blast!
(With some of our girls. I'm on the far left, Vic is 3rd from the left.)

We also took some trips together with the youth.
One time we went with the kids to camp.
It was called "Extreme Kansas".
Seriously.
And, it was extreme.
It was at LEAST 100 degrees everyday.
No showers.
And we slept in tents.
I, to this day, have NO idea how Justin got her to come along!
Vic, even though she's far from an "outdoorsey" girl, was a trooper.

(L to R: Victoria, Katie, and Me)
See? I didn't lie about my hair.

One day we played that game where all the adults hide and the students try to see how many of us they can find.
Vic and I had a GENIUS plan!
We grabbed the keys to the van.
Jumped in.
Locked the doors.
Turned on the AC on full blast.
And then just laid on the van floor, in the AC heaven.
The students found us in no time.
They banged on the windows shouting, "We SEE you in there!!!!"
We ignored them.
I love that memory!

Victoria also worked at the preschool.
That was a blast!
I laughed every time one of her 2 1/2 year olds called her "Fattoria" or "Titoria".

(L to R): Victoria, Megan, Stefanie, and I)

(L to R: Stef, Megan, Me, Victoria, and Maggie)
THAT was a fun year at Mt. Hope!!

Vic and Justin also have one of those marriages we look up to.
Those two adore each other.
They help and serve each other.
They're best friends and it's evident being around them.
Its encouraging to say the least.

Almost 2 years ago, they moved back to California (where their families live) as they were expecting their first child.
Their precious little girl, Moriah, was born with a heart defect and CHARGE syndrome.
They have literally been in and out of the hospital since she was born, in January 2008.
I believe Moriah has been in the hospital for 10 months straight now.

I'd love for you to check out their blog, Moments with Moriah.
They have the most beautiful baby girl and the most encouraging testimony.
It's been a really hard year for them.
They struggle at times.
But, they are amazing parents, constantly fighting for and advocating for their little girl.
Please join me in praying for them.

crop+fam.jpg

Monday, August 24, 2009

K-Group Camping

We love our friends.

Last weekend we went camping together!
16 people.
7 dogs.
Eleven Mile State Park.

Ben and I went up a little early on Friday since he had the day off.
We arrived to find that there was NO shade.
Not a tree in sight.
Kind of strange for Colorado.
But it was beautiful!

We set up our tent.

Checked out the lake.

Made dinner.
And went for a walk.



It was nice spending time together.

We started a fire and waited for our friends to arrive.
And then they did.

Jack was a little weirded out about the other dogs.
Especially meeting new dogs when it was dark.
But, he got over that.
Thank goodness!!

Then, we went to "bed".
Quite possibly the worst night of sleep ever.

The next morning we got up, had breakfast, and enjoyed the crisp, cool Colorado morning.


The girls went for a walk.
The guys tossed around the football and frisbee.

I didn't take any more pictures this day.
I hate when I do that!

We hung out, talked, read books, sat by the water...
It was a hot afternoon!
We were all thankful for the water and the breeze that came off it.

It was around this time that Jack decided he'd like to go home.
Anytime we opened the car, he jumped in.
And stayed.
We literally had to pull him out of the car.
He's an inside dog through and through.

The girls loaded up and went to find ice cream.
It was an emergency.

That night, the girls made dinner.
Our group eats well...even when we're out in the middle of nowhere.
I wish I had a picture of the spread.
It was amazing.

After dinner, a storm rolled in.
There was wind.
Lightening.
More wind.
And then rain.
(Picture stolen from Jennifer's blog.)
Not really ideal camping conditions, but we survived.
At one point we sat in our cars.
Jack loved that part.
Our car (Ben, Rachel, Katie, and I) played 20 questions with Mike and Cathy via walkie-talkies.
That made me laugh.

We finally headed back to the tents and eventually fell asleep.

The next morning was beautiful!

Jack sat in the car again.
This time he KNEW we would soon be heading home.

The guys cooked breakfast!
It was fantastic!

Afterwards, we packed up and headed home.
We quickly unloaded the car.
Showered.
And then napped.
Best nap ever.

It was a great weekend.

Bun in the Oven.

It's true!
I'm growing a human!

Here's proof...
It's not the clearest picture, but you can see Baby Bolt's profile...head and little arm.

I'm now 11 weeks pregnant.
The baby is approximately the size of a lime.

I feel great.
No nausea.
No puking.
All in all, it's been just fine thus far!
I'm hoping that lasts. :)

We've chosen a midwife, Jessica Nipp.
She delivered our nephew, too.
We like her a lot.
We're planning a home birth.
And we know a lot of you think that's weird.
That's okay, though.
We know that's the best option for us.

Hmm...
What else?

Oh!
We think Jack may know.
He's rarely more than a few feet away from me these days.
Sometimes I go in the kitchen just to have sometime without a dog under my feet.
I like the kitchen!
That's where we keep the apples and peanut butter!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Threshers

A couple weekends ago, we (and the Bolton fam) loaded up the cars and drove 14 hours to Hamilton, Illinois.

We were going to visit Ben's paternal grandparents and his extended family.

This is Grandma A.J. (Picture taken at our wedding last year.)
She's everything you'd think of when you picture an idyllic grandmother.
She bakes the most amazing cinnamon rolls and pies.

And this is Grandpa Bob with Ben and JB.

He's awesome, too. And funny.

This is the view from their back door.
They live on a beautiful farm surrounded by corn fields.
Walking around the property, you'd see barns, grain bins, the old hog buildings, old tractors and trucks, cats, a garden...
It's fantastic!

I found it entertaining to watch my nephew, Zion, poke this cat with a stick.


The main event of the weekend is Threshers.
"What the heck is that?", you may ask.
Well, I guess a long time ago the community would rent a thresher and they'd all come together to help each other thresh their wheat.
It was a community event.

This is Ben and I in front of the threshing machine.
Long after that process faded, everyone still gets together to eat, check out each other's tractors and old farming equipment, and watch the tractor pulls and horse pulls.

This is Ben and I (and our peers) at the horse pull.
There seemed to be an entire generation of people absent...ours.

JB, Ben, and Jim in front of Grandpa's tractor.


We saw some interesting fashion trends in Hamilton.
Like this one.
Hot.

Even the teenage girls were sporting the cut t-shirt look.
(Weren't we sly with the picture taking?)

We also played cards, read our books, ate ice cream, and visited with family.
All in all, it was a great trip!
It was fun to hear and see the history of the Boltons.

I'm off to take a pair of scissors to Ben's t-shirts!
He'll look like that tractor driver in no time!