Friday, December 31, 2010

New Year's Eve

Well, 2010 was certainly an interesting year.

I want to leave that sentence by itself on a line because really, truly - Ben and I have seen some awesome/exciting/terrifying changes in our lives this year. We've tried to reflect on the past few months not just at the end of the year, but in little gulps and swallows of time, sometimes days and sometimes weeks.

Looking back at 2010, we saw many prayers answered. Some of these prayers had been prayed for a LONG time - 2-3 years. And all of a sudden: right after the other, they were answered. God's timeline was/is very different from the one we imagine(d) for ourselves. But everything seems to be working out!

In August, we found out we were expecting after 3 long years of tears, sadness, and hope. This struggle was one of the hardest emotional battles I've fought, and I continue to pray and hope for our friends who are in the same situation. This time helped us to understand each other better, to depend on God, and to open up about our hurt to others. I find it interesting that after I shared our story with a few friends and the circle of prayers grew wider, our prayers were finally answered. A good reminder to Ben and me that our church family, not just here but all over, are there for us and want to share our burdens.

However, we were a little a-feared because Ben didn't have steady employment. He took jobs with a temp agency and found a good position that we thought would be alright for a while. He also delivered pizza 2-3 nights a week. Meanwhile, we assumed I'd continue with my two jobs: teaching and Starbucks (Starbucks for the health benefits). I can't tell you how much I have appreciated Ben over the past couple of years that he's been out of law school. Work in the legal field is very hard to find right now, and he'd go to interview after interview and try his best, yet when there's over 100 other people applying for the same position...it can be a little disheartening. Even though he was discouraged often, Ben continued to try to find a good job. He took on seemingly menial & thankless jobs like delivering pizza to help our finances.

Another answer to prayer came when a friend called Ben and mentioned a legal position in her office. Within 3 weeks, Ben was out of the temp job, done with pizza delivery, and in to his new place of employment. Health insurance followed, I left Starbucks, and life has settled in to a new rhythm. Ben's job is another long-awaited answer to prayer. I looked back in my prayer journals from a couple of years ago and there it was - "Please send Ben a good job with insurance!"

The most recent development in our lives is our prayer for a good place to live. We put our townhome back on the rental market, had a few showings, and within a week, it was rented to a new tenant! As the mama bear, I was a little worried about finding a good place to live in a few days so we could move in January.

We found one house that was okay - one person described it as a "one-hiney kitchen" - it had a yard, but was a teeny tiny house right next to a bunch of power lines (cue the tin-foil hats!). Still, it was in our price range, so we went on and applied. Then Ben and I went out and cruised the streets of Denver. We found another house and met the owner and we thought we were in love with the house! It was their first house, teeny/tiny again but in a fun neighborhood close to parks. Ben and I had pretty much decided we seriously needed to consider this one.

We looked at one other house in one of the trendier Denver neighborhoods. I have to admit, it would have been fun to live there because of all the cool shops and such right around, but for some reason, the house didn't quite jive with me. Ben was head over heels in love with the house for the local restaurant action. But Mama Bear was being picky.

Finally, we stopped by one other house. We weren't quite sure what to expect - having done our research and Google Street View, as Ben put it, it didn't look so much like a house as a guard shack. We loved the neighborhood (even though it didn't have enough public restrooms for a particular pregnant lady) but would the house measure up?

Well. The house was our Happy House. Creaky wooden floors, built in 1891, not one but two kitchen windows over the sink (something I've always wanted!), a yard with fruit trees and a grape arbor, an old raised bathtub, a laundry room, and enough storage space for all of our junk....!!!! It definitely needed some TLC because the two students living there hadn't taken care of it...but as I told our rental agent - "We love to take old houses and love on them." So if you want to come and help us move on January 15th....

We're very thankful for all of our blessings in 2010, and we pray that we'll be able to use them to serve God in 2011. Happy New Year!

Monday, December 6, 2010

Kickstart.

Well, there's nothing like a kick in the stomach to make you start blogging again. Heh. Heh.

No really, life's been exciting the past couple of weeks as I've really started to feel the future MLS player (or English Premier League?) that's making its presence known down below. My emotions run an interesting mix between excitement, apprehension, and of course, a little anxiety as Baby kicks, punches, and hiccups its way through each day.

One of my friends at work told me she really missed the kicking and punching after the baby was born, and I can understand why! If I don't think I've felt anything for a while, I start to wonder if anyone's home down there. Although this warm fuzzy feeling might disappear in a month or two when there's no extra room at the inn.

School is winding down for the semester. They're interviewing someone for my maternity leave position tomorrow, so I get to go in and talk to him or her. It looks like my last day at the school will be in the first week of March.

There are a couple of major dates looming right now - we'd like to make it to the Florida College Lectures in February (one of the last weeks I'll be able to travel, according to my baby book - here's hoping I don't go into labor on the plane) and the last week in February is the senior play I'm directing. Don't worry - I'm making sure to plan things with plenty of help just in case.

Oh yeah, and how could I forget that our townhome is now back on the rental market and we're going to try and move before Baby is born? :) We like things to be a little stressful - we feel more motivated. Or something like that.

More coming next month about the new birth center I hope to use for delivery, as well as assorted updates on life and how we live it.