Wednesday, December 22, 2010

The Incarnation

I'm not a noted theologian and I'm not terribly eloquent, but I wanted to share a few thoughts I have had this Christmas season. I have learned a few things about babies in the last two months. They are so helpless. They can't even hold up their heads. They can't see very well. They only way they can communicate is through crying and making noises. They are very humble creatures. They trust us SO much. Noah is never afraid that I'm going to drop him or not feed him or stop taking care of him. In light of this, I have been so overwhelmed with the incarnation this year. In our small group at church we have been reading A. W. Tozer's The Attributes of God. God is eternal, omnipresent, immutable, just, full of grace, wrath, and love. This very God that I worship put on flesh and became a tiny helpless baby for my sake. Unbelievable. He had to cry to get what he needed. He had to be held by two sinners to get where he needed to go. He had to learn how to talk. He stepped out of heaven where everyone was always telling him, "You are right. You are holy. You are perfect." and step into this wicked world where everyone told him, "You blaspheme. You are strange. You are wrong."

I've also been contemplating what it would have been like to be his mother. Knowing she would have a holy, perfect child, was she disappointed at his humanity? Did she understand the weight of the moment as she held him in his hands for the first time? Because she was so close and so intimately related to Him, did she ever doubt that he was actually the Messiah? I am so overwhelmed that Jesus was born in a manger. How did Mary handle that? Was she scared?

I love Noah so much. I can't stop kissing his cheeks. When he smiles at me I have joy like I've never had before. I think often about what he will be like when he gets older. I worry about him. I hope the best for him. I get nervous when he seems out of sorts and I make everyone put on hand sanitizer before they can hold him. I'm sure that Mary loved Jesus like this. I'm sure she gazed in his face while he nursed. I'm sure she laughed as he learned to walk and was proud when he learned from his dad how to build things for the home. It makes me cry to think that she had to see him suffer on the cross. Of everyone in Jesus' life on earth she was probably the most intimately acquainted with him and I would bet that she loved him in a way that no one else loved him. Then she had to watch him suffer so horrifically. If I had to watch Noah suffer in that way I think I would be vomiting. I would throw up and I would weep and I would try to get him out of the hands of those horrible people. She was called to something so difficult, and yet so blessed. She spent such precious time with the Savior of the world.

This year I am very thankful that Jesus willingly laid aside his power and clothed himself in humanity. I'm so thankful that He humbled himself and became obedient to death, even death on a cross. The incarnation is such a breath-taking mystery.

An Ode to Christopher

I was just looking at a friend's blog and their Christmas tree was so beautifully decorated, like you would find in a magazine. For a second I was tempted to be jealous and to think that our tree was so lame compared to theirs. Then I realized that I'm so happy that our tree has colored lights, homemade ornaments, and a few Disney characters hanging up there. It might not be magazine worthy, but I think it represents us well. For some reason comparing our shabby tree to my friend's fancy tree made me really thankful for my husband.

I love that Chris doesn't care at all about having a house that looks like it could belong in a magazine, but he does care that our house is comfortable and that people feel like they can kick up their feet here.

I love that he has a really good, manly beard.

I love that he likes baseball. It's so all-American of him. And I love that he knows everything about baseball. It is always so attractive to me when we start to talk baseball history.

I like that Chris embraces his nerdiness so well... Magic cards, video games, etc.

There is a lot more that I love about Chris, but I have been instructed by him in the past that I'm not allowed to blog about intimate details of our life...especially his intimate details. I'm just so thankful that I have a husband who appreciates colored Christmas lights and doesn't compare our family to other families that are more beautiful or have fancier things.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

The Lone Wolf

I decided I need to start documenting the things Chris says in his sleep. He always speaks crystal clear and even though I'm wide awake, I am often confused as to whether he is asleep or not. The other night we had this sleepy conversation:
C: Did you hear the lone wolf?
B: What?
C: It was either a lone wolf or a coyote.
B: What are you talking about? They were in our yard?
C: Yeah. There was a lone wolf in the yard.
B: Why does it have to be a lone wolf? Why can't it just be a wolf?
C: Because wolves run in packs and he was all by himself.
B: (Laughing) You are so weird.
C: What? Am I not making any sense? I'm serious.

Snow Shoeing

Chris finished his classes on Friday and he got all A's!!! I'm so proud of him. He worked so diligently this semester and really took school seriously for the first time in his life. Most Saturdays this fall he was busy doing homework and yesterday he had no homework to do. I was so excited! We decided to go snow shoeing near our house. Chris carried Noah in the ErgoCarrier and off we went. Frazier had a blast and since he was post-holeing up to his neck the whole time, he slept the rest of the afternoon.
Noah was starting to get a little mad
The view of Game Creek, the area where we live
Hiking along
Check out Frazier's ears. He was VERY excited!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Happy Birthday Bethany!

Today is Bethany's birthday and I am so thankful for my sweet sister in law! When Chris and I got married I could not have imagined what a fantastic new family I would be a part of. I remember the first time I met her in the Wichita airport and she was beaming to see her brother and his fiancee. She immediately made me feel at home and made me feel like her sister. We don't get to spend that much time together, but we have some very fun memories regardless. One of our favorite days was when she visited Jackson and we made potato soup and laid on the blow up bed most of the day watching movies.

I'm so thankful that Bethany loves Jesus. There have been plenty of times when she has encouraged me to love the Lord more through our conversations on the phone. She is transparent about her struggles and humble when it comes to being instructed by the Word of God. She has such a servants heart.

I can't wait for her to come out and spend Christmas with us next week!

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Two Months!

Father and Son have a very special bond
Our first family photo at the Christmas concert
This is what Noah wears on our walks
My Big Boy! We think he is starting look more like the Newbold side of the family
Baby Noah is two months old! We had our two month wellness check yesterday and he weighs 10 lbs 11 ounces and is 23 inches long. He's in the 50th percentile for length and the 25th percentile for weight. Growing like a weed that little one!

Noah has had lots of firsts this last month! He celebrated his first Thanksgiving and was very thankful for Grandma, Grandpa, Auntie Bethany and his great Grandparents. He went to his first birthday party for Abby Gava's 6th birthday at the Rec Center. He had his first few shots :( That was sad. He used his cloth diapers for the first time. He stayed in the nursery at church with Emily and Cheyenne and did great! I was very hesitant to put him in there, but since there was only one other child I felt okay about it. He went to his first two Stroller Strides classes and slept through both of them. He went to his first concert at the Center for the Arts. It was Christmas music performed by the Jackson Hole Orchestra and the Jackson Hole Chamber Choir. He spent his first night without Mommy and did an awesome job taking bottles from Dad. Chris took such sweet care of his little boy and loved his time alone with Noah.

We are so thankful for our little guy! He is such a joy. He loves to smile and coo at us... especially in the morning. We have gotten into a pretty consistent schedule starting at 6 am. He sleeps for a 4-6 hour stretch every night and I'm super thankful for that! I often pray that it would be 6 and not 4 hours, but it doesn't always work out that way. It's really hard for me when he wakes up at 4:30 am and is ready for the day, but that doesn't happen as often now that we are on a more consistent schedule. He always takes his first nap in his swing and sleeps for like 2 hours. I put him in there so he doesn't cry and wake up daddy. We love to go on walks using our ErgoCarrier. He usually sleeps the whole time.

Parenting continues to teach us many lessons on humility and selflessness. I constantly have to search my heart and decide if I am simply doing the easy thing or the thing that will benefit Noah and our family in the long run. I love to do the easy thing! But the truth is, I want to do what serves Noah most and what brings glory to our great God. It often takes sacrifice on our part to do this. This is great practice for when we need to begin disciplining our little boy and there will be lots of temptation to do the easy thing instead of the thing that best serves him in the long run. I am learning that my time in the Word will probably never look the same as it did before children. It's a little more sporadic and it takes a lot more discipline to sit to down and read. I try to read out loud in the mornings while nursing Noah. This has been a great time with him! I hope it gets me in the habit of reading God's Word to him and making most of the time that I have during the day.

I have been struck by what an amazing gift it is to be a stay at home wife and mom. When I first brought Noah home I was very uncertain about the whole thing. I loved him, but I was so overwhelmed and felt like what I was doing was not profitable. I'm so thankful that God has changed my heart! Chris is really giving me the most precious gift by letting me stay at home and parent Noah while he works to support us. I love being home with him. I love cooking for our family and trying out new recipes. I love that we get to go for walks almost every day. I love that I'm not missing anything. I love that I get to have people over from our church and minister to them. This week I am starting to counsel and disciple people again and I'm so thankful that I have the time to do that!

I can't wait to see what the next month holds!