Saturday, April 30, 2011

Haydee's Fan Club

We have Hayden this weekend. Our lake house area was hit really bad with a tornado last week so my parents have gone to clean up and assess things. Fortunately, our cabin was sparred and all our friends and neighbors are ok, some of their houses, notsomuch. So Hayden had a game last night and my two had never been to a ballpark where they didn't own it. They were obnoxious with their entitlement to go in dugouts and walk onto fields. We are going to have to work on understanding the difference in Daddy's field and everyone elses. Meanwhile I have never seen two be so proud and excited for someone else. Micah literally cheered throughout the warm up and through the game. He coached Hayden through every pitch. SadieJane would just yell "Go!" "Base!" , etc. Our girl of one work sentences. I had a good time but don't really look forward to singleparenting organized sports. We'll see how that goes. Today is our last Chapel Hill game and we hope to go out in style. The kiddos and I are excited to cheer on the panthers for their last game this season! Maybe we are cheering for them...or maybe we are cheering because its their last.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Trying to Bloom Where We Are Planted.

Mick and Micah worked on our garden about a week ago and I haven't had a chance to get the pictures up. We planted lots of tomatoes, squash, beans, cucumbers, and a few more things. We started this little garden in an idea I had from a magazine and now it has turned into quite the event. Micah definitely LOVES to take part...and I'm sure this year SayJ will help with the pickin'. Just like these plants, our immediate family (Mick, Micah, SadieJane and I) are all just trying to bloom where God has planted us, lately our Creator has been planting us in some places we'd rather not be...but nonetheless we are all desperate to bloom!
I've had alot swirling around in my head lately and I think I'll feel better getting it out onto the blog. I promise to write a funny Harper children blog next so as usual skip this if you aren't in for some seriousness. As I thought over what I am about to write about tears came to my eyes, but you no what...they weren't tears of sadness, nope, they were tears of thankfulness. They actually weren't even tears about the hard stuff I wanted to type out, but they were tears of "my cup runneth over" because even in the hard season, my family, and my God have been so MUCH for me that the hard stuff seems not so hard at all. (Well at this point anyways, which is why it was a good idea to wait to write about it:) for everyone's sake) When I think about where our family is right now, internally we are at a really good's those external things that are really cramping my style. Or not. So, a few of the minor baby elephants in the room are that we have had a really hard baseball season, with constant criticism and questioning of character, values and even being questioned about our commitement to the Lord (obviously, most of that is aimed at Mick, but since we are one in the Lord, it affects me greatly and possibly even more so than he) It has been so bad that there is rarely a game (I can only think of one) that we've gone to that I haven't overheard or been right there when someone slanders, says nasty things, or is just rude about that "idiot coach". I know this sounds small and I need tougher skin, etc, etc, etc. but it still hurts and makes our ministry not so fun. I have alot of thoughts on what is going on there, but right now I'm just going to scratch the surface, for fear of too much emotions from my next, much larger elephant in the room. You all know that my sister has had a rough go at life in general. The bare facts are she was addicted to meth along with a host of other things for a very long time. She came out on the other side and has been clean (for what I think to be) 2 years. A miracle in itself and if you read my blog something I wasn't certain we would see so soon. But God definitely brought her through alot and He deserves all the praise and glory. I know there were lots of you praying. The big news is that she is pregnant again. She is well into her 7th month(I think, denial includes getting as few details as possible) and I only found out a month or so ago. While I am thankful for new life and the gift of children it is just a hard place to sit where I am right now. Call it selfishness, worry, doubt, sin or all of the above, but I am still trying to register how this all works exactly. Obviously I am leaving out ALOT of details that might make this alot easier to understand but I am trying to guard my words and make sure I don't misrepresent my own feelings or anyone elses. My sister is doing well, but obviously we don't always see eye to eye. We are definitely two different people, with two very different worldviews. I love her so much and pray that this new life is a blessing to her and to all that get to be apart of their lives. I have alot of other emotions along with it and again we find it hard to have time to talk to one another beyond the superficial aspect of babies and family. I pray that we get past that and that our families will still get to grow and know each other better. I just ask your prayers for our families as we learn to ebb and flow into whatever God may have for us. I have spoken to very few people about this, for a variety of different reason, so if this is news to you it isn't because I was keeping it hidden (we all know I don't even hide the color of my undies (pink)) but I have seriously had a really hard time processing and knowing what to do with this news.
Since my family tends to live in denial(myself included), other than the initial shock of this current situation we've done little to move forward from it. I am hoping that opening it up and putting it out there will help all of us to grow closer together and closer to Jesus.
Lastly, my sister and I will now both have two kiddos. She has Chase with her and will soon have the new baby girl. Hayden her oldest, is with my parents and with us anytime we can manage the three:) This new baby is a girl and I know God has a plan to use our situations to bring us closer together, I really hope we can look back in the next five years, just like we have the last three and see how far God has brought us.
Harper, her second child was born at a time right before everyones world crumbled by Heather being crippled by drug usage and as a family being torn in a million directions dealing with both our contribution to this problem as well as finding any way possible to get her help. Unfortunately, the last thing that has been heavy on my mind is our relationship with Harper. He lives with his dad and doesn't know his siblings or his cousins, or any of us at all. It is such a hard, sad, situation and I want so badly to fix it. Thinking about a new baby coming into our family and how we will love her and get to know her is exciting, but then I feel guilty that we haven't done the same with Harper. I am praying about ways to make ammends for where we have failed him and ways to slowly hopefully get to know him too. As you can see, being the mother of two children of my own with lots of prayers for them as well, my prayer time is bound up with lots of "gimmees" to the Lord. So the final reason I put all this out there is as usual not for a good dirty laundry Hill/Harper dump but it is to beg you for your prayers too. The complications and impacts of these last few situations make some snide comments on the ballfield seem even smaller...but nonetheless God knows the numbers of hairs on our heads and cares for us in ways that we can't imagine. Thank goodness, for without His close love and care I would be oh so lost.
I am also aware that these situations we face could be so much worse, our family could have easily been torn apart by addiction and my sister could be in jail or dead. BUT, God saw fit to spare us from those tragedies and so many others. We have much to be thankful I mentioned at the beginning of this novel I started out in tears of thankfulness because even in all this I find myself "happy in the Lord", this doesn't mean I am all smiles and sunshine, but it does mean I have a Rock to lean on and a God to seek for things I don't comprehend. I will admit I am ending this post in tears of sadness as I reread it and I am overwhelmed with the hardness of it all.
In thinking through this post and our current circumstances this song has ministered to me and made me rethink what "hardship" really these words if you haven't already heard this song by Laura Story...

We pray for blessings
We pray for peace
Comfort for family, protection while we sleep
We pray for healing, for prosperity
We pray for Your mighty hand to ease our suffering
All the while, You hear each spoken need
Yet love us way too much to give us lesser things

Cause what if Your blessings come through raindrops
What if Your healing comes through tears
What if a thousand sleepless nights
Are what it takes to know You’re near
What if trials of this life are Your mercies in disguise

We pray for wisdom
Your voice to hear
And we cry in anger when we cannot feel You near
We doubt Your goodness, we doubt Your love
As if every promise from Your Word is not enough
All the while, You hear each desperate plea
And long that we'd have faith to believe

Cause what if Your blessings come through raindrops
What if Your healing comes through tears
What if a thousand sleepless nights
Are what it takes to know You’re near
And what if trials of this life are Your mercies in disguise

When friends betray us
When darkness seems to win
We know the pain reminds this heart
That this is not, this is not our home,
It's not our home

Cause what if Your blessings come through raindrops
What if Your healing comes through tears
And what if a thousand sleepless nights
Are what it takes to know You’re near
What if my greatest disappointments
Or the aching of this life
Is the revealing of a greater thirst this world can’t satisfy
And what if trials of this life
The rain, the storms, the hardest nights
Are Your mercies in disguise

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Easter Sunday...the fun continues! Part 2

Can you see the excitement in the guys eyes...especially Mick...oh wait he was too busy checking the braves score.

Micah's eyes were also hidden and his Sunday finest was long gone.

After brief naps for everyone but me we headed to the Wallace's for another egg hunt and dinner. They have become like family to us so it was nice to spend time with them on Easter. I am so excited because I finally have some pictures of Maxsim other than his ''birth" day. He is growing up and sitting up so big! Kevin just had their back yard sodded up and they got new benches that the kiddos put to good use. My family was at the lake for Easter and we didn't get to make it this year. Sorry Jenny! We'll be there for Mother's day I hope!

Easter Sunday...Funday! Part 1

Easter Sunday we got up and went to church with much gnashing of teeth about our outfits as previously mentioned. But after church I had to play tennis and the kiddos went to Aunt Wendy and Uncle Mickey's to eat and egg hunt. I got there in time to see them hunt and had a great time. Micah needed a wagon for his eggs and SadieJane as usual picked one egg. She is a simple girl just like her Momma. Hahaha. Uncle Hank and Aunt Betty (some of Mick's parents best friends) were there and all of the kiddos insisted on having their picture made with them. It was too cute!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Six for Seven.

Finally, Amy posted on her blog and facebook so I can keep uptodate with my blog. Some people (cough, Suzie, cough) were bitter that I like to post things when they actually happen but if I don't post them, they get lost on the camera. Love you, Suz:) I wore pink and blue so that I had it covered on predicting the gender. The title is Micah's ability to predict gender. He was correct on Amy's bundle which puts him up to 6 out of 7 correct. He is almost up to being as accurrate as an actual ultrasound and definitely more accurate than those pee tests from Walgreens.
Anyways, last Friday I got to go with Amy and 200 hundred of her other closest friends to find out the gender of this bundle of joy in her belly. Ok, there were less than that, but it was so fun to see all of her family there and you can tell she and her boys are well loved! We've had similar situations up until now, but she found out that she is going to be the Momma of another BOY! Seeing that little heartbeat and his fingers and toes...were so precious and I am so thankful that I got to be apart of it. Amy and I were friends before we were born so it is nothing short of amazing that we have a friendship that has lasted long enough for us to be sharing each others joys the way our Mom's shared their joys of having us! I will say too, that Mom's of two boys always seem so cool. So I guess Amy will up her coolness factor after little Stephen Harper Dobbs is born! (that isn't the chosen name, but a nice suggestion don't ya think?)

Monday, April 25, 2011

My Two Smallest Easter Blessings.

While we all know my lack of love for all things lies and fakeness (aka Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny) the kiddos are fans no matter what we say or what we don't. Either way they woke up to some treats Easter morning. They had so much fun and there were just a few little things. It actually was almost better than Christmas in that we didn't overwhelm them with stuff. Hmmm. After that delightfulness we turned to the matter at hand, getting dressed for Jesus. That went over like a lead balloon. Micah cried the whole time and even into Sunday School. I went with a real dress for SadieJane and she tripped over it incessantly. All of us matched on Sunday because we'll be wearing our outfits again for family pictures. Since we can't afford to do artsy fartsy ones like the ones we had done in September most of you wont ever see the good pics so below is how easy it is to get a good pic of my two...hahaha. Don't judge us that we had Easter lunch at Moe's. We had coupons.

Happy Easter from the Harper's! Mick did attend church with us. I just forgot to take his picture. Maybe the people at the mall will remember when we have them made. Hee hee. Sorry Mickey!