Saturday, August 28, 2010

birthday girl's special day...

Much to my dismay, I decided not to have a birthday party this year for Berlyn. It was too difficult coordinating 5 different sets of family and their schedules, and with Darcy's new job, (he has been working many long days and nights and wouldn't be around)...it just didn't seem the season in life for us to do a big birthday party (as much as every creative bone in my body longed to do it).
So, I decided we would celebrate (just the 5 of us) on her actual birthday (even if it meant early in the morning before Daddy had to go into work) and I would still bake Beryln a special cake, make her a birthday banner, and would even put up a few balloons and decorations for her. I racked my brain trying to figure out what special cake I could make her and the Saturday before her birthday (as I was rocking her to sleep and reading her favorite story to her) it dawned on me! My yummy loves, loves, loves "Pat the Bunny"...so a "Pat the Bunny" birthday cake was exactly what I planned to bake her! Once I had this idea set, I had fun with it and was even able to get out a little creative energy in the process :)
Perceiving my disappointment in not being able to throw Berlyn a big 1st birthday party, a couple of my very intuitive and thoughtful friends approached me a few days before her birthday and asked if they could come over the day of her actual birthday to bring her some birthday cheer. I was thrilled with the idea and all I had to do was bake an extra batch of cupcakes! And so, an impromptu birthday party was brought to us!..making this a very special day indeed, and reminding me that God knows our hearts, our needs, our desires and He uses special people in our lives to bring the joy, encouragement and love we need at just the right time. My heart was touched by the generosity and simple acts of these dear girlfriends of mine.
Here is a video of our baby girl's special day...Enjoy!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

My Baby is One Today

Berlyn,
You have blessed our lives each and every one of the 365 days that you've been here. We've loved you since before you drew your first breath...since you were an idea, a hope, a dream, and our deepest heart's desire. You make our family complete, gifting us with joy and reminding us daily of God's providence.

We love you for your wet and stingy kisses;
your King Kong moves as you go into every room innocently ready to conquer and destroy;
your chubby tan lines between each roll of precious baby skin;
for your fuzzy comb-over hair
and relentless quest to empty every cupboard in the house;
We love you for your simple love of books and your enthusiasm in doing
all things "Paul & Judy"
(like patting the bunny, feeling daddy's scratchy face, putting your finger in mummy's ring and nosediving into the book to smell the flowers);
I even love your wet little head peeking around the shower curtain getting soaked and flooding the floor beneath you in every effort to keep mommy in your sight even while I am showering;
for your compulsiveness to climb stairs and stand in an open fridge;
for your love of cheetos, icecream and bananas,
and your distaste for all things green and healthy;
for your willingness to smile and "cheese" for the camera
(showing your true Schrieber spirit);
and your loud grizzly roar (and sometimes never ceasing whine;)
for your babble and giggle and determined spirit;
for your inclination to call all dogs "Darla;"
We love you for your wobbly walk and your speedy crawl;
for your forehead-to-carpet tantrums and your boneless acts of protest;
for your conquest of all things forbidden
(like sunblock, cell phones, keys, remotes, and legos);
for your adoration of your big brother and the outdoors;
We love you for the extra chaos and abundant joy that has overwhelmed our hearts and our home and has pieced together a family that is whole.
Thank you darling for all that you are and all that God is preparing you to be.
Always remember, before you had a being in this world, you had a being in His heart.
May you keep Him closely kept in yours and be a mirror
for His beauty to the world.
Happy Birthday beautiful one.


Friday, August 20, 2010

George Lucas in training...

This one is for my Mama Jo, a long awaited clip of Brayden I wasn't able to share upon her request months ago. It was recorded back in November when Brayden was narrating a Star Wars book he had penned and illustrated on his own. His writing skills have definitely improved in the past 9 plus months...but since I just recently figured out that I can share recordings if I put them into iMovie form first, you are getting a very very late sneak peek. Enjoy the heart of this adorable 6 year old Jedi warrior!

Good Shepherd

Stripped. Layers of convenience and comfort peeled away so that I'm left with nothing but pure, sweet, raw dependence on Him.

Like sheep that have been shorn of their hair...I stand vulnerable, afraid, but look to my Master and trust that the Good Shepherd has a purpose and a plan. That the stripping and shearing is for my own good and will bring forth a profit...Not a profit of wool or prosperity, but of life that brings glory to Him.

Finding these days that I am stronger than I thought I was. That His strength and matchless might is always within my reach--ready to be invoked...That I am perpetually within the sound of His voice and He hears mine.

Thank you Good Shepherd. Once again I am humbly wise to your providence.

As with any Good Shepherd, even in times when I'm prone to wander, you still stand by your flock, seeking the lost but not forgotten. Never ceasing to guide, watch, preserve, restore, tend and feed the children of your pasture.

Shepherd of mine, I love your ways.

"He will stand and shepherd his flock in the strength of the Lord."
~Micah 5:4

Saturday, August 14, 2010

one step at a time...



as with the young, we are learning to walk in faith
one step at a time
with sincere gladness and thankfulness,
perpetually following hard after God.
any season in life that brings me in close communion with the Lord on a daily basis
is one worth living and claiming with joy.
to be stripped of everything but complete trust and hope
and dependence in Him feels as vulnerable as a child taking it's first steps,
yet equally liberating.

"You make me glad by your deeds."
~Psalm 92:4
today's heartwarmer:
(Brookie's lunchtime prayer:)
"Dear God, thank you that we celebrate Daddy so he is working so hard for us.
In Jesus' name we pray,
Amen."

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Weekend Getaway-Part 2: Our CIELO

This post is dedicated to our weekend getaway to Lake Michigan ("post-race"). It was simply beautiful, refreshing, restoring, and exactly what our family needed. The week before Darcy's race was by far the most mentally challenging and exhausting weeks he has had. With this new career change, he has had to become licensed. He spent the entire week before the race studying for two major exams. He took one on Wednesday and passed, and the final one (most difficult) was taken on Thursday (my birthday). He passed this one as well, surpassing his first exam score~ giving me the best birthday present ever! Many people have to take these exams 2 to 3 times before passing, so we were so relieved he passed and so thankful to have that chapter of our journey over. I was so proud of him, and so thankful for God's provision during this time.
And, needless to say, Darcy's 1/2 ironman tri was by far the most exhausting physical challenge of his life. To sum it all up, the last week in July was the most mentally and physically exhausting time for Darcy. With all of the days and hours spent training and studying, it was tiring for me as well to have him away so much.
This post-race getaway was peace to our souls and tremendous refreshment to our spirits.
We rented this quaint little cottage that was nestled back in the woods, tucked around the corner with direct access to the beach.
We delighted in the fact that it was appropriately named "Cielo"
It truly felt like a slice of heaven.
[and to me it felt like God's handprint, His favor on our lives, through (once again), even the smallest of details]
I'll let the rest of these photos speak for themselves, telling the story of our weekend "Cielo" in illustrative form.
































(every household needs one of these...sure beats bending over a bathtub!)

































I was blessed to sneak off to the beach our last morning, before anyone awoke. Just me, my cup of Joe, and time with my Father. I walked in quietness, listening to the song of the lake bestilling my heart. At one point, I looked across the water, at it's vastness where I could see no end...and I thought to myself, this is exactly as His love is for me
~ there is no end.
I reflected on His goodness. How He makes all things new. and good.
My heart is full.
And with all of the frightful and exciting things ahead of us...
I am committing to always love Him and seek Him first and best.
To loosen my grip on all earthly things and yearn for and store up all things "Cielo."
Blessed to be a child after His heart.