Wednesday, June 22, 2011

From Everlasting to Everlasting

This is what I got to see a few weeks ago. He knew I needed it.

              Before the mountains were born                                      
                                         or you brought forth the earth and the world,                         
                                             from everlasting                                
                                                                to everlasting...                                    
       You are God.    
                                                                                                                          Psalm 90:2                                         

Sunday, June 19, 2011


I am really grateful for this man
...who makes us laugh all day long.
...who is in every way sooo good for me.
...who loves the Lord and leads our family well.
....who is an incredible father to our little boy(s).
...who is a man of wisdom and integrity and character.
...whom God uses to help me become the woman He wants me to be.
...whose crazy personality is so clearly reflected in his son.
...whom I am so blessed to get to journey beside.

I am really grateful for this man
...who is a great father-in-law.
...who welcomed me into his family with no expectations.
...who is a hard worker and instilled that value into my family.
...whose life gave life to my husband and, in turn, to my babies.


I am really grateful for this man
...who gave me life.
...whom I miss very much.
...who is brilliant and hilarious.
...whose love of the beauty of the outdoors he passed along to me.
...who always worked so hard and so well to provide for our family.
...whose unconditional love for me made it easier for me to receive God's.

Happy Father's Day

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

All of Me

Walking through these new challenges, the Lord is surrounding us with people who have already been there. My friend, Sarah, and I were roommates together in Ocean City years and years ago. She is an incredible mother of two girls and one boy. Her little boy, Bowen, is now nine months old and was born with a serious heart defect. Her husband, Matt, is the lead singer of Sanctus Real. He recently released a song called "All of Me" that he wrote while Sarah was pregnant with Bowen. Check out this short video to hear more about his heart behind the song. It is amazing.

You can read more at their blog, Bowen's Heart.

"All of Me" from Ryan Lynch on Vimeo.

Monday, June 13, 2011


We had planned on spending the summer in Vail, Colorado on a summer project.  All the plans we had made, however, changed instantly in the perinatologist's office a few weeks ago.  So, now we're home with good access to consistent medical care.

Summer at home brings with it unexpected challenges and opportunities.  Caleb is no longer in school, so I am playing with the idea of coming up with some weekly themes for us to explore...bugs, space, etc.  With summer, he gets a lot more time with his dad...which has been wonderful.  They have spent hours playing with water in his new little pool.  Another special thing they do together is watch the TV show Wipeout on the computer every Saturday.  I am not a fan, so it is definitely a Daddy/Caleb thing.  Yesterday, he put together the costume in the pics below...his "Wipeout superhero costume."

And so we have this short little season together as a family of three before things change drastically in the fall with the coming of a new little person.  I am so grateful to have this time to nest, to learn, and to seek God.  I sometimes get nervous about the unknown and unforeseen challenges of the fall...with a new baby and medical issues and ministry in full swing.  But, as He keeps reminding me, I need "not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself (Matt 6:34)."

In the meantime, C and I are both signed up for some reading programs.  B and I are working on some Scripture memorization together.  And, I am hoping to get some camping in. Hopefully we can sprinkle some extra activities throughout the summer such as learning to sew and the awesome ideas from this blog post.  Check them out if you have kids.  Happy Summer!

Saturday, June 11, 2011

"...that the works of God might be displayed in him."

My friend Holly sent me the following talk from John Piper: "Why was this child born blind?"  In John 9, the disciples ask Jesus if a man's blindness was due to his sin or that of the parents.  Jesus responds by saying that it wasn't that they sinned, "but this happened so that the works of God might be displayed in him (John 9:3)."

Yes.  That is our prayer.  It has been our prayer all along.  We are asking God to use this wiggly little boy (and Caleb as well) to show others how wonderful He is.  He has already been doing so in our lives.  :-)

Piper gave this talk the day before our ultrasound.   Cool, huh?  If you have some time to sit and listen, it's great stuff.  The text of the talk is also written out on the website...if you just want to read it. 

Find the talk here.

"...but this happened
so that the works of God
might be displayed in him."
John 9:3

Thursday, June 9, 2011

What we know as of now...

WARNING:  This post is long, and it is as much for my own memory as it is to help friends understand what's going on.  Also, I in no way possess any medical training.  So, feel free to correct me if you see any errors here.  It's all as I understood what the doctors were telling me.  :-)

Last week, we traveled up to Albuquerque again to see multiple doctors.  Because the appointments spanned two days, we stayed the night with our friends Kyle and Chrissy.  Their hospitality made what could have been a challenging trip significantly more enjoyable.

We were pretty nervous about what the doctors would say.  There was still so much we didn't know, and we had waited to meet with them to learn more about what our little boy will be dealing with.  We wanted to be educated by the doctors...not the internet.  Expecting more hard news, we instead ended up leaving each appointment surprisingly encouraged.

From the NICU doctor, we learned:
  • The length of his stay in the Newborn Intensive Care Unit will be roughly until his due date (September 3rd). 
  • Soon after he is born, he will be on monitors and IVs.  He will receive an ultrasound, an EKG, and an echo cardiogram. He will also probably receive antibiotics. 
  • Trisomy 21 babies have a harder time eating at first.  IVs and feeding tubes could be involved.
  • Along with that, nursing will be difficult.  I can use a hospital-grade pump, and they'll use that once he's off IVs. 
  • He might need help breathing, and he will likely be assisted by oxygen or a breathing machine.  
  • She expects Downs babies to come prematurely.  This, however, was contradicted by the pediatric cardiologist. 
From the pediatric cardiologist, we learned:
  • Prematurity isn't necessarily more prevalent in babies with Down Syndrome.
  • His arteries and veins look normal...which is great. 
  • After he is born, they will quickly evaluate him to ensure the diagnosis is correct.  This is partly the reason for the echo cardiogram. 
  • They will then meet with us to determine a follow-up plan.    
  • He will have surgery when he is 4 months old.  It is a 5 day recovery if all goes well.  The surgery involves using a dacron patch (a woven, plastic material similar to that of a parka) to create the missing septums.  Apparently, the heart covers the material with cells and it doesn't need to be replaced.  In fact, the heart grows in proportion to the body and the patch stays the same...meaning it becomes rather insignificant over the long term. 
  • The surgeon has never seen a fatality.  A few have needed a second surgery or an artificial valve put in, but it has a great success rate.
From the OBGYN doctor, we learned:
  • We won't be in Albuquerque this summer as much as we thought. 
  • She will deliver us, and the delivery will hopefully be like any other.  It won't necessarily be caesarean, but there will be NICU doctors immediately on hand. 
  • She will induce us at 38 or 39 weeks.  I am less likely to deliver before that due to the fact that Caleb came late.  My pregnancy history is the greatest factor in determining whether this baby will come early or late. 
From the Perinatologist, we learned:
  • Our baby looks great!  They did what is called a "biophysical profile" on him via ultrasound.  It took them a very short time to find what they needed to see.  As I understood it, they were looking for the following four things, and they scored him accordingly:
  • Resistance in the Umbilical Cord:  Score: 2 out of 2
  • Fine Motor Skills:  Score: 2 out of 2  He was opening and closing a fist while they were looking. 
  • Practicing Breathing:  Score: 2 out of 2  He was hiccuping while they watched...which counts.
  • Amniotic Fluid Level:  Score: 2 out of 2
  • So, he scored 8 out of 8!!  We were so proud...and grateful!  :-)
So, it was a good trip...full of good news and good friends...and mostly a very good God.  We're so thankful for our God who cares for us through great medical doctors and great friends and family. 

Also, through this trip we were able to learn more specifics as to what we can be praying for.  I am hoping to create a prayer list on a separate page listed at the top of my blog.  Thanks again so much to all of you who are praying!  It means more than we can ever begin to express.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Meet Baby Pelton

He looks so very much like Caleb did as a baby.  It was our first reaction, and this quick ultrasound photo was a sweet gift from the Lord in the midst of all the news.  Thanks so much for all your sweet messages and prayers.  How blessed we are to have such wonderful people in our lives.  Tomorrow, I hope to share more about what we know so far about what the first few months of his life will look like.  In the meantime, I leave you with this beautiful little face...

"For you created my inmost being; 
you knit me together in my mother's womb. 
I praise you because I am
fearfully and wonderfully made; 
your works are wonderful, 
I know that full well."

Psalm 139:13-14

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Fearfully and Wonderfully Made

Two weeks ago, we received some news that is still changing our lives.

After our routine 20-week ultrasound hinted at something strange, our doctor sent us up to Albuquerque for a Level 2 ultrasound to get a better look.  We left Caleb with good friends, and we made the trip just the two of us...engaging in a pretty long argument about nothing along the way. 

Once there, the ultrasound technician who saw us was sweet and cracked countless jokes, but we weren't at all in the mood.  We were both apprehensive as to what the screen would reveal.  As she began to look at the heart, it was obvious even to us that something was not normal.  His little heart seemed to have only three chambers.  The tech seemed concerned and spent what felt like an eternity taking more pictures of various parts of his little body.

Eventually, the doctor came in and explained the following:  He has an Atrioventricular Canal Defect.  In the first weeks of his life, the wall (septum) between his atria didn't form.  Neither did the septum between his ventricles.  It is a congenital heart defect that is common in children with Down Syndrome.  Due to the heart defect and some other indicators, the likelihood of our little guy having Down Syndrome was 50-70%.  So, at their recommendation, we did an amniocentesis.   

During the days that followed, our tears were mixed with much joy and gratitude.  Family and good friends were praying for us, and we felt it.  Again and again, the Lord was reminding us that He "works all things together for the good of those who love Him (Romans 8:28)" and that He has a plan for our littlest boy's life...a very good plan.  That didn't change when we received the news four days later that he does indeed have Down Syndrome.  

There are still so many unknowns.  But, God knows.  There are so many emotions.  But, He's walking us through this.  And, we are clinging to Him.  

"Yet I am always with you;
you hold me by my right hand.  
You guide me with your counsel,
and afterward you will take me into glory. 
Whom have I in heaven but you? 
And earth has nothing I desire besides you. 
My flesh and my heart may fail,
but God is the strength of my heart
and my portion forever."

Psalm 73: 23-26

And we're up and running...

So, obviously it has been a little while since my last or so months to be more precise. I had started playing with blog design. I had decided to base my blog theme off the verse in Ecclesiastes 3:11, "He has made everything beautiful in its time." I wanted this blog to be a place where I could gather together things that I found beautiful...stories of my family, photography, crafts, etc. I wanted to celebrate the beauty of my Lord reflected in the things He has made.

Then, something rather significant happened, and I got a little distracted. We found out on December 23rd that we are pregnant! The night before, we had had a conversation with my Dad to tell him we were adopting internationally. So, it was something of a surprise to see what we saw that next night. 

I had taken the pregnancy test at Brandon's encouragement...just to get the question out of my mind. I was in no way expecting to see the word "pregnant" unaccompanied by "not." The picture above we took that night...before we told anyone. We were incredibly stunned, and I cried. With that shock came much joy, and along with Christmas morning came the opportunity to tell my parents something I had been wanting to tell them for over three years.

So, the grandiose thoughts of learning CSS and trying my hand at blog design soon fell to the wayside as I began to dream of baby names and nursery colors. I had all intentions of getting back to my blog someday. And, now, six months later, this precious little boy currently making his presence known in my body necessitates that I get this thing up and running again. So, now begins my jump back into the blogging world...

Thanks for reading.