In the Fall we celebrated Sukkot in Indiana. It was a great time spent with friends and family (Lydia came up to celebrate with us and we greatly enjoyed having her tag along.).
I figured that I would start up where I left off. Marta was about 4 months old at the time of my last post. These are just a few of the highlights since then.
In the Fall we celebrated Sukkot in Indiana. It was a great time spent with friends and family (Lydia came up to celebrate with us and we greatly enjoyed having her tag along.).
Marta continues to grow and learn every day. She brings such joy and happiness into our lives and into the lives of those around her.
Painting continues to be a hobby of mine and I enjoy decorating my home with some of the finished work but also giving it away to friends and family who request it.
In January we found out that we are expecting our second baby in September. There are so many things to be thankful for this pregnancy! There was much less morning sickness than with Marta (which led us to believe it may be a boy). We were also able to find a midwife much sooner than with my last pregnancy. Even though I got pregnant relatively soon after giving birth to Marta, it's been encouraging to see how my body has bounced back and is taking everything in stride.
One of Jake's and my favorite things to do is host friends at our apartment. God has blessed us with opportunities to minister to the Young Adults in our area by having them over for game nights and pizza, These friends have been a tremendous blessing to our family and we feel honored to have such wonderful people in our lives.
This year we celebrated Passover with family in Ohio, It was a very special time and we were happy to be with the ones we love.
It was my due date, April 27th, when I first started to suspect I was having contractions. They began around 7 am, as intense as menstrual cramps, but being a first time mom I wasn't sure if these were the real deal. Because we were unsure of the realness of the contractions, I decided to head to work with Jake. When we arrived at the client's house we were nervous and excited at the prospect of having our baby within the next hours! Jake told the client that there was a chance that we'd have to leave early and the client was very kind and understanding, he was even concerned that I was working too hard and kept telling me to take breaks. As the contractions became more intense I tried to work faster. The weeks leading up to this day we had been working hard to paint this house before the baby arrived and this was the last room. We wanted to finish the job before we took our "babymoon" vacation for a few weeks and we were hoping to finish the room that day.
Thankfully we finished the room around 2:00pm. Jacob thought we might have enough time to finish a small job that he had in that neighborhood. So, I sat in the car timing my 'cramps' and resting as he finished up that job. By now, the cramps were pretty uncomfortable. Once we started home at 3:30 or so, I was dreading every turn and bump in the car. When we were almost home, I remembered that there was a church nearby having a rummage sale to raise funds for the food pantry. So, we stopped by and bought a few shirts for Jacob. By this time, I was leaning against tables and the contractions were coming more regularly. With every contraction I was just trying to make it through... I alternated between focusing on the contraction and trying to distract myself, all the while just trying to relax. Our friends were excited that we thought we were in labor but I was just dreading the car ride home.
At home we made pizza together for dinner. This was around 6:00pm and I think it's when active labor started because I was no longer able to stand during contractions. I notified the midwives and they advised me to rest and eat some food. We finished making the pizza, but it took a while... every time I had a contraction I had to get on my hands and knees while Jacob did his best to comfort me. After we ate, we tried to sleep. but I couldn't sleep because the contractions were so intense. I started to use some vocalization techniques that I had learned about (I felt like screaming), and I also tried to relax. Jake and I timed the contraction together and we would send the times to the midwives occasionally. It was 10:00 pm and I knew that I was definitely in labor but because I was having contractions that were 1-2 minutes long with 2-5 minute breaks I didn't know how much longer it would be. The contractions were VERY intense and I wasn't able to think clearly... I couldn't remember any of the coping techniques that I had studied about except trying to relax and vocalizing. The midwives were telling Jake to have me 'take a nap, take a shower and rest'... for some reason this really got on my nerves and I started to worry that they'd never believe that I was in labor. I remember crying out to God with each contraction and also thinking "I could really use an epidural right now" and knowing that if it had been available that I'd have taken one for sure. FOR SURE. Suddenly I felt a strong pressure in my pelvic area and I thought I might start pushing. I told Jake and he texted the midwives. They called to talk to me, thankfully it was during a break in contractions. They asked me to describe what I was feeling, I started to describe it but then had a contraction. They said they were on their way. One of the midwives stayed on the phone with us and told Jake to read the section of our birthing manual called "When baby comes quickly". It's the chapter designed to help us know what to do if the baby comes before the midwife arrives.
Two of the midwives arrived at about 11:15pm. I was on my hands and knees in the bed. They made sure I was drinking water. Once they got settled in the third midwife ("the boss") arrived, it was now 11:30pm. She suggested I get out of bed and empty my bladder, to which I moaned "noooo, I can't" (I was really whiny, I guess, lol) but I did it anyway and Jacob helped me. Once I was on the potty I didn't think I could move from there. TMI WARNING. At this point I couldn't tell if I was 'pushing' or if I was having an extremely large and painful bowel movement. The Boss then told me to try squatting in front of the couch with Jacob supporting me. Again, I said "nooo, please, I can't, I don't want to" but I did. After a few pushes my water broke and I was able to feel the top of my baby's head with my hand. Jacob felt it too. Just a few pushes later and my baby was lying on my chest, a little pink baby girl. It was 12:37am.
We named her Marta Joy, She weighed 6lbs and 1ounce, she was 19.5 inches long.
Hopefully I'll post another update soon.
Until then, Blessings!
Before Jake and I were married, I tasked myself with the responsibility of creating a comprehensive list of every household item Jake and I may need during our marriage. This list was extremely helpful in allowing us to avoid disastrous situations that could have easily been avoided had we planned a little better. For example; cooking our first meal only to discover we do not own a can opener; not realizing that we do not own a plunger until we are well in need of one; or not being able to write a letter because we do not own a piece of paper.
I've titled the Google Document "Getting Started". So check it out!
Because each person's wants and needs can vary greatly, you would want to look over this list and customize it to suit yourself.
When first starting out, it's probably smart not to buy everything new. But shop around a bit at thrift stores and garage sales Friends might even give you items that they've been meaning to get rid of- That's where we got several pieces of furniture, including our couch and recliner.
Be careful about shopping at Goodwill. I can't speak for all Goodwill thrift stores, but around here they over price many of their household goods. Sometimes you'll even find a better deal buying an item brand new! It helps to have a phone with internet access, so you can check the going rate of an item.
Besides thrift stores and garage sales, we used the app called "Offer Up". It's similar to Craigslist, but a lot more user friendly. People who use Offer Up (At least where we live) tend to be quick at responding. We've also experienced fewer scammers through Offer Up as compared to Craigslist.
You may want to check Facebook and see if there are garage sale groups for you area and the surrounding areas. This is great if you are looking for an item that is sold fairly often. Otherwise, you're lucky to find what you want because the turnover is very fast. If you don't see the item you want within an hour or two then it's likely been sold. I don't like to sit on Facebook and refresh the group every 3 minutes hoping to see what I'm looking for... but if you have the time and patience, more power to ya!
As a side note, be very careful when buying used furniture; Bed bugs, cockroaches, urine and smoke are a few of the yuckies you could run into; so check an item very carefully before you buy. Thankfully, the worst problem we had was a bunch of sunflower seeds in the bottom of a couch... We cleaned them out immediately as there are plenty of critters that could be attracted to seeds.
Not everyone prefers to buy used, and that's okay too, but you'll need a much larger budget just starting out. The combined total of the furniture in our fully furnished apartment amounts to under $200. For us, that's worth it not to have the most stylish home. The Lord provided for us in so many ways! Just about each piece of furniture has a story of God's provision attached to it. I love to look around our house and be surrounded by the goodness of God.
Jake and I enjoyed bargain shopping before and after the wedding- it's a great bonding experience :) May you also enjoy filling your home with good things!
Oh my, so much can happen in such a little amount of time.
At the end of October I moved out of my parents’ house and moved in with some friends of mine. The most selfless, loving and generous family I have ever known. After a couple weeks of adjusting I started looking for a job. I found a nanny job about 20 minutes away, but it did not start till January 9th. I took the job and was so excited, but a week before I was supposed to start, the family contacted me and let me know that they did not need me anymore. That was very disappointing to me, but I later concluded that God had something better for me. So, I went back to job searching and kept praying that God would bring the right job to me at the right time. In January, a lady contacted me wanting to know if I was interested in learning more about her long-term, full-time nanny position, I was very interested and let her know. I had an interview with her the next Friday and by the end of January I had a full-time job. I was so excited and ready to work again. I am so happy that God had better plans for me. I love how God worked everything out to His glory.
I have been going through a rough time in my life for the past couple months, I made some life changing decisions, but they were decisions I needed to make for a long time. They have caused lots of pain, but that does not mean I made the wrong decision, it just means sometimes there was going to be pain no matter what I decided. I know that the decisions I made were right and that my future will be better because of it. I have come a long way, but I know I still have a very long way to go. God has been with me through it all and I have found comfort in many songs, below are some of the ones that have really comforted me.
Your Hands by JJ Heller
Steady My Heart by Kari Jobe
Matter by For King & Country
It’s Not Over Yet by For King & Country
Shoulders by For King & Country
Have a blessed weekend!
Here’s a sample of what’s been going on this past year!
Naomi and her family are living in a small, quiet town in Western Kansas, though they spent very little time at home during their adventurous summer. The fantastic news of Naomi expecting another baby was a great way to start off the new year. But Joe, Naomi and Joseph spent an exciting summer traveling from Florida to Oregon and many places between visiting relatives before Michael made his debut at home on September 2nd.
Gina, Jake, Bethany, Emily and Lydia all made a trip to Kansas in September, with hopes to be present at Michael’s birth. However, God had other plans and Michael was born before any of the Potts or Lansfords arrived. Regardless, the Potts and Lansfords enjoyed the time spent with the Foxes; meeting Joe’s coworkers at the school, making soap with Naomi, sewing and even making a trip to Colorado for Michael’s circumcision.
In March of 2016 Bethany became engaged to Jacob Lansford, they were married on June 5th. Jake and Bethany had hopes to start a business within the next year or so, one night they prayed that God would give them a sign about the timing of exactly when to start a business of their own. A few days before the wedding Jake and Bethany started a Handyman business and only by the grace of God have they managed to turn profit from day one.
After starting a marriage and a business God saw fit to start a family. In August Bethany found out that she’s expecting their first child at the beginning of May 2017. The Lansfords are living in Arcadia, Indiana and attend a local church where some of the members keep the Sabbath and others are interested in Jake teaching them Hebrew dance.
At the start of the year Emily was enjoying working 30 hours a week nannying for two different families. In the Summer she helped to move her family down to their new home in Marengo. Since then, in October, she and Lydia have moved to a small town just outside of Evansville.
Emily is currently searching for a job, she is keeping her options open to jobs that may prove to broaden her skills and interests. Photography continues to be a hobby that Emily is improving and using to create beautiful pieces of art (it probably helps too that the subjects of her pictures are pretty adorable).
High School graduation was an important stepping stone for Lydia this year. After she finished high school she kept herself busy helping Gina around the house, cooking, cleaning, taking care of the foster children, volunteering at the crisis pregnancy center and studying topics that interest her, including fashion and psychology.
She’s been working through online courses in psychology. As usual Lydia has enjoyed putting her artistic ability to use blessing others and expressing herself in creativity.
Introducing Michael Fox!
Here is a picture of Joseph & Michael
Joseph is doing a wonderful job as a big brother.
I can't wait to see them in December.
Have a blessed day,
Naomi is expecting baby number 2!
Lydia, mom and I are going to be going to Kansas at the beginning of September to be there when the baby is born. I can't wait to go, it's gonna be a great time. I'm excited to find out if it is a boy or a girl.
I will be making two blankets again since they are not finding out the gender of the baby.
Have a great week,
Hey ya'll! Hope you guys had a great summer! Here is a short poll just to get to know you a little bit better.
First question: What is your MBPT? It means Myers Briggs Personality Type. If you don't know what you are, here's a link to a test you can take. https://www.16personalities.com/
Have a great day! Blessings,
Many of you may not know, but my family is moving!
For 2 years my family has been actively looking for land.
We found 2 properties and looked at them between the months March-May 2015.
We have found quite a few properties that we really liked, but only 4 that made our qualifications. We didn’t look at a property unless it had high speed internet, because we wouldn’t be able to survive without it. Just kidding, my Dad works from home (which is a huge blessing) and can’t work without it. :)
The first property was 30 acres with a house.
We will the call this the green house, we went and had a showing at the green house and really liked it.We prayed about it a lot and were going to make an offer, but the sellers decided that they didn’t want to sell anymore.
We were sad, but we knew that it wasn’t God’s will.
So we kept looking, after a couple weeks we found another property that was also 30 acres.
It was so pretty, nice rolling hills, a barn and a good place to put a pond. We all really liked it.
But when we were thinking about making an offer the sellers decided they did not want to sell anymore. Yep you read that right, they decided not to sell just like the people with the green house.
We were again disappointed, but knew that this property was not God’s will either.
Finding two properties that met our needs was confirmation that God had something for us, just not these at this time. It was like God saying: "I have something for you just not this and not yet." -Mom
From then we kept looking but didn’t find anything, so we got into gear to get our foster care license which is a post for another day.
Fast forward to March of this year and we started actively looking for property again. One Time I was looking for houses in my room and I found 2 that could we could look at, let’s call them the white house and the brick house.
My mom called and set up the showings for the end of March.
So at the end of March we packed up and headed 3 hours south, to look at the brick house/land first.
We looked at it and fell in love with it right away.
It "felt" like home to everyone. There was a peace in the home we all liked.- Mom
For lunch we headed over to our friend’s house that is 1 hour from the brick house and had lunch with them. Then I decided to stay with our friends for a couple hours and visit since Lydia, Bethany and Jake stayed there for the weekend and were going to leave in a couple hours.
The rest of my family went to go look at the white house.
The white house was half the amount of acreage and more square feet than the brick house and they said the atmosphere was so different there than the brick house. My mom said that she could not exactly explain the atmosphere at the white house, but that it was dark. But the brick house was different because the sellers were strong Christians and you could tell by the atmosphere and by all the Bible verses hanging on the wall.
So we decided to look more into the brick house, my parents set up for a time to be shown the perimeter of the property by the sellers. They liked the land even more after seeing more of it.
So they moved forward with putting in an offer.
So to make a long story shorter we bought the brick house and are moving in July.
After we knew we were going to move, we had to get our own house ready to sell.
Once our house was on the market it sold in 1 week, which was really exciting that we did not have to have any more showings. The closing for our house is set and we will be moving towards the end of July.
So for those of you that are interested I will share some pictures I took when I saw the property the second time knowing that it was soon going to be ours.
Below you see 2 apple trees.
Above is the view from the back of the house, there are some cherry trees on the hill.
I hope you have enjoyed this update.
Have a blessed weekend!
How quickly time passes! It seems like just yesterday that I was running outside to go play with my siblings in the woods. And now I'm a nanny 5 days a week.
My life has turned out to be more busy and enjoyable than I thought it would be, but also more challenging.
Here's a look into my week, two days a week I nanny a 6 month and 21 month old boys and 3 days a week I nanny a 5 year old, 3 year old and 10 month old boys. It has been an amazing adventure caring for these boys, it's so fun to see each of their personalities and to watch them as they learn to express themselves in their own ways.
I've been a nanny since August, I chose nannying because I love kids and thought it would be something I enjoy. Well I was right, I have enjoyed it immensely. My boys (what I like to call them) have taught me so much, they have taught me to be more patient, to multitask, how to play rescue bots, how to love deeper, to enjoy the little things and so much more. I hope that I have taught them half as much as they have taught me. :)
Since nannying takes up most of my time, I don't have as much free time as I used too.
But when I do have free time, I like to practice guitar and photography. Since we are also in the process of moving I have even less free time, but that's okay cause I know this is temporary time and that I will eventually have more free time again.
Now my life may seem boring and it probably is to you, but it's really not. I have so much to be thankful for, I have a great family, food to eat everyday, a job that I love, great friends and some best friends that I miss like crazy!
Now what is the point of this life anyway?
Is it to have a good time?
No, this life is all about giving glory to God, we need to constantly look at our lives to make sure that there is nothing that is taking glory away from God and giving it to ourselves.
I'm not claiming to be perfect or to have it all figured out, but one thing I do know is that God has put me here for a reason and it is my job to glorify Him where I am.
Sometimes I feel like my life isn't really making a difference, but then I have to remember to look at the big picture and remember that God only made 1 me, there is no one in the entire world like me.
And, if i'm not being me, then there is a puzzle piece missing in God's puzzle.
What I'm doing is making a difference even if I don't see it.
Have a blessed and productive week!