Friday, February 10, 2012

Engagement Photos

This past weekend we took our engagement photos. I wanted to use the ferris wheel as a backdrop, since that is where it all went down, and thanks to Pinterest I found some cool ideas for that and for some other shots as well. And FYI-- the blue dress with the yellow tights? Totally Pinterest. Like I would ever think to wear mustard yellow tights! I asked Jo, who took the photos of the wedding at the hospital, to take our pictures, and come to find out it was her first engagement shoot! But seriously?? If this is what she does with her first engagement shoot, what else can the woman do?? We are super excited about how these photos turned out and cannot wait to get them printed out and hung on a wall! I tried to narrow it down to my favorites, but it was just so dang hard!

We bribed Carter with Pez, and he was mildly cooperative. Remember that shirt he is wearing? Christiaan was way more ingenius than he realized!

How is this picture of us?? It should be from a magazine or something! LOVE LOVE!

My favorite picture of Christiaan. Ever.

Just cool.

I have a feeling we will be calling Jo for many photos in our future. Because clearly she is very talented! You can't even tell that it had been raining for like 2 days prior to our shoot, or that it was super windy and chilly out that morning! Oddly enough, it felt very similar to the weather on the day of our wedding at the hospital. God sure has a sense of humor.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

The Christmas Wish

FYI--Yes I am aware that it is February and I am just now getting around to writing about this, and am also severely behind on other updates, but maybe this will help explain where my brain has been....

Back in August of last year, the fragile foundation of my parents' house finally gave way and the a pier from the previous foundation work shot out of the ground on the front porch. Unfortunately this cause the front door to jam, rendering it useless. I tried calling the foudation company that had done the previous work, but was told by them and then later by several other companies that the earliest they could come out was around a month later! I guess they really picked up business due to the drought over the summer. So we resorted to using the back door only. When someone finally was able to come out, it was discovered that there was a plumbing leak under the house, and thus began all the back and forth of whether the foundation issues were due to the plumbing break, or the break was due to the foundation issues. None of which my parents had the means to repair.

Eventually it was decided to repair the plumbing first, and this was supposed to start just before Christmas break. Literally just as the they were going to start, the man in charge got a phone call that they had a family emergency and had to leave. At least, that was the story he gave my mom.....

In reality, several friends and family members had written in to KLTY's Christmas Wish program. Our family friend, Karen's, wish letter was chosen and they began the process of sneaking around to check out the situation at the house unbeknownst to my mom or me. They recruited my aunt Karen, my mom's friend Debbie, and Christiaan to accomplish everything.

On the Tuesday before Christmas, my mom was finishing the last day of school before break and was called to a principals office to talk. He stalled for time and eventually took a phone call from KLTY's Bonnie Curry, who broke the news to mom about the answer to all her prayers!

She read the amazing letter that Karen wrote in, telling the history of what all has happened to our family in recent months and why my mom was so deserving of a granted wish. She informed mom that a foundation company was going to fix the house, and plumbing company was going to repair whatever was going on with the plumbing, a storage company was going to provide pod storage for everything in the house since it would have to be cleared out, and a band called FourTwelve was donating cash to help cover other costs.

Mom was totally floored, and of course cried her way through the call, which was broadcasted multiple times throughout the next day and next few days before Christmas. I have it saved on my computer but cannot figure out how to get it uploaded to my post for some reason. But she spoke so wonderfully and really portrayed a faithful servant of God and showed why she truly was so deserving of this wonderful gift! I still can't believe that all of this was coordinated without either of us knowing about it!

So we have spent the month of January prepping the house and our lives for the ridiculous amount of work the the house is undergoing. We had to clear out and pack up every room of the house except for mom's room, due to the extreme amount of foundation work that has to be done. It was quite a feat, seeing as how they have lived in that house for somewhere around 28 years and have managed to accumulate a lifetime and 3 kids worth of living there. We filled to the brim 3 entire pods with everything from the house! As of now, the foundation is done, and plumbing repair is scheduled to start this week, followed by repairs of the walls and new flooring. Once everything is done, I will post pictures of all the work!

Here is the letter that Karen sent in....

Steve and Pam have been friends of ours for over 30 years. They met in the 4th grade at church and began “going together” in the 7th grade. Steve said that he knew then that Pam would be the love of his life. They married in 1979 and celebrated their 32nd wedding anniversary this year. During their marriage, they were blessed with a beautiful family – including 4 children and 1 grandson, who has blessed their lives in ways they never knew were possible.
Steve served for many years as a Music Minister with Pam right by his side playing the piano so beautifully. Together, they were such a Godly couple and team.
In August of 2009, Steve was diagnosed with Leukemia. For the next 27 months, they spent more time in the hospital than they did at home as Steve endured round after round of chemo. For over 2 years, Pam would make a bed right there in his room wanting to spend every moment she could with him. She was his biggest encourager, cheerleader, spirit lifter, prayer warrior, and never giving up hope. She went to work when she could, but always felt torn when she would have to leave him. It was such a blessing to watch their love for each other grow deeper and deeper.
Our hearts were broken on November 10th when the doctors called for the family to come to the hospital. They were told at that time that there was nothing else that they could do for Steve, and that he would be going home with Hospice.
Their daughter, Audrah, had gotten engaged this fall. She was waiting until Spring for the wedding in order to give her Daddy time to get stronger and be able to walk her down the aisle. When the hospital staff heard this, they quickly put things in motion and got a wedding together in 36 hours. They had a beautiful ceremony in the outside courtyard at Medical City Hospital on Saturday, November 12th with Pam pushing the wheelchair as Steve escorted Audrah hand-in-hand down the aisle. Steve left the hospital the next day – they went to Pam’s brother and sister-in-law’s home to spend their last few days together.
Here is the heartbreaking message that we received from Pam on Thursday, November 17th:
At 3:40 this morning, I lost the love of my life. No words can express the heartache I feel today. We have known each other since the 4th grade, share the same experiences, held each other tight through the joyous times and through the toughest of times, raised incredible children who make us so proud, and served our Lord side by side. We are comforted knowing that he is rejoicing with our Lord and being reunited with our son, Tyler. But my selfish being misses him terribly and is not sure how I will be able to go on without him. Please lift our family in prayer as we try to cope.
Pam is not only left now trying to figure out what life will be like for her and the kids without their husband/daddy, but also dealing with issues that came up during Steve’s illness. Pam is not even able to go back home at this time. Because of the drought during this past summer, their foundation cracked in 3 places. She has checked with their insurance company and they are refusing to pay for this repair. Also, since Steve was not able to work for over 2 years, Pam is in a financial bind and has MAJOR medical bills she must deal with. In addition to that, their youngest son had to drop out of college to move back home to help the family. It was Steve’s wish that he would be able to complete his degree.
I pray that the KLTY Christmas Wish program will be able to help this precious family during this difficult time in their lives. God bless you all for all you do for the families of your KLTY listeners! Merry Christmas to you and yours!!
In Him,