Thursday, December 31, 2009

Saying goodbye to 2009..welcoming 2010!
































The past two weeks have been so busy, but with lots of wonderful things! Some of our most memorable moments..

Uncle Matt came in from CA for Christmas and the kids LOVE being with him so much! He doesn't come home often enough though, so Matthew...make it a New Year's resolution! Or we will have to go to CA more!!

Madeline and Mallory both sang in Christmas Eve services at church and Madeline had the honor of singing a duet in one service of "Happy Birthday Jesus" Talk about proud parents! That girl has no fear..we attend a large church...must have been 2500 or so folks there :) She continues to be our "rockstar"




Mallory lost her 2nd tooth! Yes, day after Christmas! She is now sporting a large hole in the bottom of her mouth!


We made CRAFTS..yes, CRAFTS..gingerbread houses, shrinkdink trees, Christmas cookies..you name it we did it..thanks Grandma! Kept the kids from killing each other from "togetherness"

Parker turned 7 months on the 23rd! Kind of snuck up on us! Guess this is what happens though in a busy house of 6!!


Madeline got a cold and she passed it to Lara(too many late nights and early mornings)...but, no one else is sick! Please keep praying for a hedge of protection! Thank you Lord!


It has been nice this week to have some "downtime". We have so much to be thankful for this year and we feel God's presence in our lives. We look forward to 2010 and know that with God ALL things are possible!
"May the God of hope fill you with joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit." Romans 15:13









Saturday, December 19, 2009

Santa Parker Style






Ho Ho Ho..Parker is happy to oblige countless pictures with humiliating(?) outfits and Santa hats. Could he be any cuter? We don't think so!



I took Parker for his 6 month pedi visit a few weeks back and the report was excellent! We don't go back until he is 1 year to the pedi. Dr. said he is developing as a "typical" 6 month old and even a bit ahead. Dr. commented he couldn't hear anything in his heart. Said he wouldn't believe it if you told him he had a heart defect. We keep praying this is our miracle! He has great strength, bears weight well (likes to stand), and is even starting to crawl. He is still working on sitting "hands free," but he can roll anywhere these days. You can't turn your back for a minute or he's halfway across the floor! He is lifting his tush and pulling his legs under him. He pushes backwards instead of forwards, but it is so fun to watch. He has some new sounds which are loud squeals, but so fun to hear! He is so much more interactive and reminds me of our other kids when they moved from infant stage. Mike always said how fun they were at this age and he is no exception!

We are in the throws of Christmas preparations and have no shortages of parties, programs, and events, but we are focused on the reason for the season. Remembering that Christmastime is God's chosen time. A time for us to receive forgiveness for the wrong things we've done. God sent us a Savior because we need a Savior. If we didn't need a Savior, God wouldn't have wasted time sending one. God sent a Savior so we could receive forgiveness. Forgiveness...all it takes is saying, "God, I don't deserve to be forgiven. I just cast myself on Your mercy." And God says, "That's what I've been waiting for. You are forgiven."

Thank you Lord for forgiveness!

God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him. (John 3:16-17 NLT)

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Merry Christmas from the Font's!


Here it is our Christmas card 2009!!!

It has become increasingly hard to get a good picture of all of us and 4 kids is no exception! We had the card done in September, so Parker has grown so much!! Thank you to our fabulous photographer Christine Meeker who always knows how to get the perfect picture! http://www.christinemeeker.com

I have lots to say, but not enough time to write today (never fear I will be back to write), but I want to share from Rick Warren..

"But the angel said to them, "... I bring you good news of greatjoy that will be for all the people." Luke 2:10 (NIV)


Knowing that Christmastime is God's chosen time teaches us that Christmas is the time for us to renew our faith.


We need not fear God because of the Good News of Christ's arrival; it is a Good News meant to "bring great joy to all people." (Luke 2:10 NLT)


What is the Good News?


You matter to God: God knows everything about you -- the good, the bad, and the ugly -- and He still loves you. He cares about you. He loves you more than you could ever know. God is for you, not against you.


You are not an accident: Regardless of the circumstances of your birth, you were not the result of an accident. God has a plan and a purpose for your life. The only way you will find meaning and satisfaction is to discover God's purpose for your life and then to get right into the center of his will. "

And from our Christmas card..

May the gifts you receive this Christmas be the ones that abide in your heart-the peace of God...the presence of His joy...the warmth of His love.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Let it Snow, Let it Snow, Let it Snow!!!

















Well, this post is late (naturally), but SNOW it DID last Friday!!! And not just a barely noticeable flurry! Big, beautiful flakes and not just for an hour or so, but off and on all day. School was closed at 1pm and the kids had a ball in the snow. Makes for a memorable Christmas! I even took Parker out for pictures although he thought it was a bit too wet :)


Snow in Texas is rare..yesterday we were back to 77 degrees, rainy and humid, but the weather over the weekend was COLD (at least by Texas standards)! The snow reminded me of some of my favorite memories. As a child I lived in Boston, Alaska, and Wisconsin where there is no shortage of snow. The kids made a snowman and threw snowballs even if they were more like ice. I was amazed at how something so simple could excite all of us and even the entire city. A simple gift from our loving God!


Blessings to all!




Lara

Friday, December 4, 2009

Thanksgiving, Santa, and SNOW?











I am WAY behind on Christmas this year, but I guess I have an excuse? I am hoping that by changing the blog background I am on my way!!! Parker has been to see Santa (see pic) now to get the "whole gang" together..what a trick that will be! 4 kids? Poor Santa! At least this year we will have no "screamers"..Parker was oblivious to the bearded Santa that strikes fear in the heart of small children! We have a "threat" of snow today (a rarity here) and the kids are praying God delivers! We went to the tree lighting at our town square last night, so all of this should get us on our way.
Today I was blessed by a friend. Her words were the Holy Spirit witnessing to my soul and I must share. She posted about the Drs writing "simple ears" as the marker that pointed them to her daughter being diagnosed with Ds and how it had always hurt her to hear that comment. She had some pictures done and the photographer focused on her child's hands, feet, and ears! This made her think more about these ears and God revealed this to her..
"You see we don’t have to have “fancy ears” or “special ears” or any certain kind of ears at all to hear God. We just have to have a heart that is willing to listen. He doesn’t care what our ears look like or what some doctor says about us…He just wants us to love Him and for us to want to get to know Him better. I really can’t think of anything that is more simple than doing that. "
As most of you know, Parker's one marker was "low set ears" which I must confess I resented hearing, reading, and even looking at Parker's ears. Mike and I kept asking, "what does that mean?" and still don't honestly understand it, but through the gift of a friend I now have a new perspective! I love when God sends His love in awesome and unique ways!
I am reminded that when God doesn't do what we want, it's not easy. But faith is the conviction that God knows more than we do about this life and HE will get us through!! Disappointment is cured by revamped expectations!!! Remember this story?
" A man went to the store searching for a singing parakeet. He was a bachelor and his house was too quiet. The store owner had just the bird for him, so the man bought it. The next day the man came home to a house full of music! He went to the cage to feed the bird and noticed for the first time the bird had one leg. He felt cheated that he'd been sold a one-legged bird, so he called the store owner to complain. "What did you want," the store owner replied, " a bird that can sing or a bird that can dance?"
"The ways of God are without fault." Psalm 18:30
Thank you my friend for giving me a revamped expectation!!!!
Blessings!





Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Tooth Fairy!
















and no I dont mean Parker! Mallory FINALLY lost her first tooth at almost 8 years old(she will be 8in Feb)! All of our kids are late getting teeth(don't get them until one year) and Taylor we thought was late losing at 6.5 years. She has been waiting since K to loose teeth and holds the honor of being the only 2nd grader who hasn't lost any teeth...no more! She can return to school and put her name on the "lost tooth" chart. It is the little things...makes me a bit misty-eyed..my girl is growing up and all too soon she will be going shopping with friends..and taking about boys..wait, she already does that?!

Monday, November 23, 2009

6 months old!











“Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name. For the LORD is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations.”- Psalm 100:4-5


Happy 6 months my precious Parker! Mom, Dad, Taylor, Mallory and Madeline couldn't be more in love with you! You have grown so fast and that "baby" stage is already ending :( You surprised me last night on tummy time and inched and grabbed a block! I have "proof" LOL! Right place at right time w/camera which NEVER happens! Looking forward to our first Thanksgiving, we have lots to be thankful for!
Blessings to all!
Lara

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Trust and Obey..







Mallory learned an old hymn this week at school and I have found myself singing it all week..



"Trust and Obey

because there is no better way

to be happy in Jesus

than to Trust and Obey"

Simple words, but great reminder! Parker had a terrific visit to the Cardio Dr Friday. He "passed " all his tests with flying colors..BP excellent! pulse/ox 97%!color, beautiful!weight gain strong (14lbs 4ozs ,naked so no cheating), and his xray looked great. Heart not swollen nor signs of pulmonary distress (leakage from heart). She showed me the areas on the xray where we can see some slight leakage, but it is minimal. Heart size is normal too. Amazingly she said we might even wait until he is 2 years(WHAT?) rather than next summer although if he has any more leakage showing we may proceed next summer. We could even wait longer, but as she said we want to have surgery before Parker would develop a "fear" of the surgery. Before age 2 they may have stranger anxiety, but they don't know what is happening. I asked 1million questions again about "why" change of plans, why wait, etc...and she patiently answered them. Parker is very "fortunate" in that his AV canal defect in the VSD has a very small hole. The VSD component is what dictates the timing of surgery since it can cause pulmonary damage from the leakage of blood to the lungs. Kids with this defect don't usually have small holes, they are usually quite large which is why they are 4-6m when they have surgery. I asked again if this could "fix" itself, but was again reminded that his anatomy only has one mitral valve and it needs two. I feel at peace although there is a part of me that wishes it was behind me. Funny to sound "jealous" if that is the right word? of my friends who are already through the surgery! I love you girls so much please don't take that the wrong way :) I want to be on the other side, but also know we want the best outcome, so...we will "trust and obey!" She remarked at how strong he is and how strong his tone is. Parker is bearing weight very well on his legs and trying to sit independently. I like when the Dr comments that way! She was amazed really, she said "just like a typical baby!" She said we are blessed and she is correct!! So, we don't see her again until end of March and know more about surgery then. I left with her commenting that this summer is probably better and I am sure we would feel better with it behind us too, but we wait on God's timing. We go next week for another Synagis shot, then to Parker's 6mo well baby w/Pedi the following week. Parker is 50% on the Ds growth chart in weight and height. Nice place to be I think! I hadn't seen that chart in awhile and it was interesting to see. She also said that his weight gain may start to slow so not to panic, he probably won't gain as quickly as he gets older since he is almost 6months. A relief since I always panic if he isn't hungry one day :)
Looking forward to a week off with the kids and Thanksgiving with family. Not looking forward to grocery shopping, but maybe midnight is the time to go?
Count your blessings one by one!
Lara
PS. check out his hair!! Love the shirt with "bad hair day" :)

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Thoughtful Thursday



















first and foremost, the news is excellent for Baby Leila! She had a successful surgery and is recovering so well! As her Mom wrote, the news is all good! Continue to pray for her protection from illness and a quick recovery so her family can be home for the holiday.





Yesterday Parker and I visited The Rise School and had a wonderful visit. What we saw was very encouraging and the "unknown" of what the future holds didn't seem nearly the mountain my mind has created. I left feeling confident and not anxious about his future and know that I am coming to a turning point (or so I believe) with his diagnosis. He continues to do the things "typical" kids do and my heart bursts with pride with each smile, laugh, coo, and new skill(see pic for his best raspberry sound). I don't know what the future holds, but I don't know what it holds for any of us, so I choose to live in the moment and the gift of each day and be thankful!




We have a visit with the cardiologist tomorrow so I will post a medical update then.




Be thankful! Blessings to all!




Lara






2 Corinthians 4:15All this is for your benefit, so that the grace that is reaching more and more people may cause thanksgiving to overflow to the glory of God.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Prayers for Leila

Today is November 17th, the original date we were given for Parker's surgery before we were rescheduled for Oct 21st, then we were postponed! BUT, today, a precious little girl named Leila is having surgery with Dr. Fraser and I am asking for prayers for her family. I am amazed that God introduced me to this family and am honored that we can learn from her journey. God continues to amaze me with how he has orchestrated all of this long before Parker was born! So today please pray for strength for the family, wisdom for the surgeon and medical staff, protection from any illness, no unexpected issues, and a quick recovery that includes being home for Thanksgiving.

Anticipating God's best!

Monday, November 9, 2009

Thankful!







"Give your entire attention to what God is doing right now, and don't get worked up about what may or may not happen tomorrow. God will help you deal with whatever hard things come up when the time comes" (Matthew 6:34 MSG).


A fitting scripture for what I have been feeling lately. I love the translation from the Message. We spent the weekend at a swim meet and a baseball tournament for Taylor and I found myself thinking about Parker missing these moments in life. I am not surprised that these are the verses he gave to me. I am thankful that Parker continues to thrive, he doesn't need medication and know we are truly blessed! Today's devotion arrived with another reminder...thank you Lord for always meeting my needs! Parker's new favorite toy is his Nuk brush and here he is with big brothers winnings! Wonder if the Nuk brush could make my other three brush their teeth more often?


"May you always be joyful in your union with the Lord. I say it again: rejoice!" (Philippians 4:4 TEV).


Thank God in all things--Whenever you pray, you should always pray with thanksgiving. The healthiest human emotion is not love but gratitude. It actually increases your immunities. It makes you more resistant to stress and less susceptible to illness. People who are grateful are happy. But people who are ungrateful are miserable because nothing makes them happy. They're never satisfied. It's never good enough. So if you cultivate the attitude of gratitude, of being thankful in everything, it reduces stress in your life.Think about the right things--If you want to reduce the level of stress in your life, you must change the way you think because the way you think determines how you feel. And the way you feel determines how you act, which is why the Bible teaches that, if you want to change your life, you need to change what you’re thinking about.This involves a deliberate conscious choice where you change the channels. You choose to think about the right things. Because the root cause of stress is the way we choose to think, we need to focus on the positive and on God's word.What is the result of not worrying, praying about everything, giving thanks, and focusing on the right things? Paul tells us the result is, "you will experience God's peace which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand. His peace will keep your thoughts and your heart quiet and at rest as you trust in Christ Jesus."

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Do you wonder when?
















Lately I've been feeling these moments of fear/sadness about "when" the delays begin. I guess because Parker is no longer a "baby" at 5 months I've been "looking" for those signs of delay if that makes sense. Maybe it is a false sense of hope that Parker won't have any delays, maybe it is a hope that the test is wrong and this is all a bad dream. I remember my pediatrician saying at 6months you may begin to notice the delays, so as we approach that timeline the anxiety is creeping in. I've been thinking back to when the other kids were young trying desperately to remember when they sat up, stood up, walked,etc.. Some milestones I remember without fail. Taylor and Mallory walking on Mothers Day (Taylor at 11months and Mallory at 15 months). Never once did it worry me that they were "behind" their peers (or ahead for that matter). I hate that Parker has to endure "exercises" and "playtime" with purpose. He doesn't know any better, but I feel guilty if we don't exercise, stimulate, or stretch his mouth daily enough times. I wonder if his entire life will be spent around therapy of some kind? I hate that Satan robs me of the joy of just loving my son for the moment. I was looking back at my photos to see if I could remember when Madeline sat alone for the first time and found a picture. 7 months. "Good, I thought, 2more months, Parker will surely be able to sit by then." We have been working on standing, bearing weight on his legs which he tolerates well at this point, I wonder will he pull up at 10-12months? Will I always compare him to my other kids or will I one day accept him for his timeline for achievements?
What struck me was the resemblance between Parker and Madeline. I saw this early on when Parker was born, but these pictures show how much they do look alike. Someone told me that Parker has 1/3 of me, 1/3 of his Dad, and 1/3 of the "extra" which makes him more like us than the Ds. These pictures prove it! Madeline is so proud to say, "Parker looks like me Mom." I wonder when she gets older will she feel bad about saying that?
I know that God is still working on the "what for?" in me. As I always pray with the kids, "his mercy is new everyday and his grace is sufficient." Lord give me the peace that passes all understanding and the ability to trust you in all things.
"Do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded" Hebrews 10:35

Monday, November 2, 2009

Parker's First Halloween





























today is "wordless wednesday" on Monday :)







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