Thursday, October 29, 2009

for every season...

There are so many things about fall that tug on my (Krisha's) heartstrings. I always think of hot apple cider, Appalachian music, drives along the parkway, hikes at the Peaks of Otter, horizons of fiery oranges, reds, and yellows and crunchy leaves that cover the green grass. Fall makes me feel nostalgic. I adore fall....because...well, it has a predictability that doesn't disappoint. It always comes and yet each year I await with great anticipation the peak of the colors. It is exciting and new every year. It never seems to get old and yet I know it's coming. Why can't all seasons be like fall?
It reminds me too that God created seasons with purpose. We (humans) seem to need refreshment and change and yet we find security in knowing what is coming next. It also doesn't take long for our hearts to grow bored and ungrateful, desiring the next season. I'm convinced that we wouldn't appreciate fall if it lasted all year. Nor would we love spring if it wasn't preceded by cold and dark winters. I'm learning a lot about seasons of life. There are just so many facets: seasons of marriage, of parenthood, of relationships with friends, seasons of changing indentities (for me: single missionary, working newlywed, what I like to call the "sugar momma"-putting B through seminary, and now full-time mommy). This season appears to be a season of blessing. Even on the days I feel worst, I look outside and it can't be ignored. The beauty literally overflows all the way up our doorstep. Seems to be the theme of my life right now.

The previous owners even planted mums that bloomed this fall. JMU colors- purple and gold!! Couldn't have been more fitting.

Fall reminds me that God is in the details and in every season. And though some seasons seem to allow us to enjoy Him more than others, He gives us all seasons (of rejoicing, of birth and new beginnings, of sadness, true struggle, and even grief) to push us to Himself. It's true we don't welcome the tougher seasons. I admittedly do not. And often we pray for friends or family to just have their circumstances change so that they would not have to go through such a season. But still the greater prayer should not be avoidance of pain or suffering. It should be prayer for strength to draw near to Him. Prayer that something greater, and deeper is accomplished amidst the pain. Something that couldn't have happened any other way. Something that -had God given us the choice-we would've taken the easy way out and forsaken the Greater reward of knowing Him more deeply. Something so great that we won't fully understand it this side of heaven. I'm convinced that those seasons that give us a clearer picture of the hope we are living with and for.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Road trip

So we decided that since Brian never took any vacation days, we'd spend Friday creating some family memories: apple-picking with Chase and Zoe!

I had predicted that the bigger adventure would be having these two in the car together. They actually did much better in the car than they did at the orchard. You can tell Chase got all muddy by the knees of his jeans. Here are some car pix.

Chase reading his animal book which at the moment was more interesting than the live beast sitting beside him.

Looks like he's kicking Zoe but really he's grabbing her with his toes which he loves to do while making a high pitched squeel.

Out like a light.

Here is a video of what we heard the whole ride down in the car. Zoe is breathing loudly (as usual) and Chase is snoozing a way. The video was just shy of capturing Chase smiling as he heard Zoe's snorts in his dream. It was the cutest thing how he was asleep but smiled in his sleep when Zoe snorted in his face, almost like he was thinking "that's my snorty bully.........zzzzzzzz"

We headed for F'burg to visit "grandma," "grandpa" and aunty Catherine. We got to see Catherine all dolled up and I even got to help with makeup! And we got to meet Dillon, her date too. Doesn't she look stunning?!

Chase spent some quality time with grandpa & grandma and the dogs. Zoe didn't exactly get along with Kenna, the female Collie... maybe it's true that dogs are moody too when it's that time of the month! (Yep that's right; we have two in diapers!)

Brian and I were glad to get some time alone; we went on a "date." Yep, we actually walked around, ate lunch together w/o the kiddo! Here are some pix from our lunch at a really cute diner downtown F'burg.

aww, he thinks I'm sweet

you're pretty cute yourself!

On our way out of town, we watched Catherine's travel soccer game which was a really good match. I know she'd say she was disappointed at missing some shots, but I thought she played very aggressively. It reminded me of my soccer days (though I was never at the level Catherine is. Still it was fun! ) And of course Zoe was a hit! She drew many a fan at the soccer field.

Thanks Susan/Brian/Catherine for having us!!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

My 18 month old!

Chase is 18 months old!!! This post is a little late as you'd think it would be easier to remember Chase's age since he was born on the first of the month. But no. Somehow I barely keep up with the month changing and seem to forget that my baby is now a month older.

He loves standing on the couch!

Being silly!

Sitting on daddy's lap

Reading a book.... only it's upside down.

I can hardly believe that my little Chase Alexander is 1 and 1/2 years old!!! He is definitely a little ham that knows how to make us laugh and be silly. He's always full of silly expressions, winks, eyebrow raises and big teethy smiles.

Chase has come a long way! This little guy went from being a picky eater (refusing most solids) to now enjoying many adult foods. He went from being under 50th percentile in weight to being 26 lbs which is now a little above average I think. He used to be terrified every time I cut his nails and he didn't enjoy bathtime and now he doesn't mind nailcutting and LOVES bath time. He can use a fork (with a little bit of help stabbing the food) and even enjoys drinking out of a regular cup right after we brush his teeth. He is doing better at handholding when we walk and usually follows directions. Just the other day I asked him to bring me the "Brown Bear" book and he looked through his mountain of books and brought me the right one! He babbles tons but has started to pick up more signs like: please & thank you (along with his already mastered "all done," "more" and his crossed hand for when we bless the food). He has been able to pick up more body parts as well and point to them when I ask (assuming he's not distracted with something else).

His latest obsession is spinning in circles. But not just spinning... he looks to the bottom left with both of his eyes which he figured out makes him more dizzy which = more fun!! By the video you'd think we gave him sugar right before bed!

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Chase's Summit

Whenever we get the chance, Brian and I like to expose our son to the great outdoors. When fall was just starting, we made our annual trip to the Peaks of Otter. Upon returning to VA last year, we decided to go to enjoy the leaves and the beauty right here near the Roanoke Valley. It left such an impact that I wanted to ensure that this is a fall family tradition.

So this year, rather than being in the baby Bjorn, Chase ventured up to Sharp Top (the top of the Peaks of Otter) in a hike pack on his daddy's back.

He got to enjoy the view, take in his surroundings, sleep a little,
and even climb a little at the very top.
He even had his pocket bib on so he could have snacks along the way! Many a passersby made the comment the Chase had "the best seat in the house." But I know Brian looks forward to the day that Chase can hike alongside us! (Check out that Elvis lip. "uuhuuuh!")

Chase touching a horse for the first time. There's something about how soft their noses are that makes me happy! I think Chase liked the horse once he got over his big his nostrils and mouth!