Monday, February 27, 2012

Days, Weeks, and Routines

  • Instead of using words to describe our week, here is a video of it:

  • I don't know if this will inspire others (or at least give you an idea or get the creative juices pumping), but Ricky and I just started a new evening "routine" this past month that is working out really well for us. Usually, the kids are asleep no later than 8:30 p.m. We aim to get ready for bed at 10:00 p.m. and be asleep by 11:00 p.m. This means that we have an hour and a half of adult time every night (8:30-10:00 p.m.). We shower every third night (Ricky has to help me bathe; you could substitute a nice, hot bubble bath here for yourself or as a couple!). Then, we have computer time every third night. And, we have date night every third night -- free and kidless. We rotate three ideas for date nights (movie night, devotional/prayer night, coffee shop night -- complete with hot tea, chocolate, and a game, like Chess or Quarto), which means that our date night ideas occur every ninth night. [i.e. Night #1 = Shower. Night #2 = Computer time. Night #3 = Date.] Now, the time schedule pretty much is never accurate, but we have a guideline. The important thing is that we keep clean, have alone time, and nurture our marriage (even if it is for only 30 minutes) frequently. And, we may not be great following the schedule, but the routine is succeeding!

  • I think I am going to continue memorizing verses from the book of Romans for a while. This week, I am going to add the two subsequent verses to one I already quote: Romans 5:3-5 ~ Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

A Fear (that shouldn't be)

I think that one of the reasons my husband married me is because he thinks of me as fearless.

I will admit that it is hard for me to think of something I fear (I mean, besides hating spiders). Up until a few years ago, I couldn't think of anything. {This is an open-ended blog post with no pat answer, sorry. I'm just confessing a struggle of mine.}

The biggest fear -- the fear of death -- holds no sway on me. In fact, there is nothing I welcome more. I long to die, perhaps too much, because I cannot wait to be with my Love. To laugh with Him, to dance with Him, to hold hands, to play together, to explore together, to be rid of my fallen self, to see, to know, to be full, to be... Anyway, bottom line here: fear of death has no place in this heart!

But, there is one thing I have discovered. Torture. The kind that does not end in death. Just embrace pain with no end in sight and the promise of getting to die remains elusive. Burning to death seems unbearable, but I feel like if I knew that I would only have to persevere for twenty minutes before I could die, then I might be able to handle it (by God's great grace, of course!). But I do not think that I could endure torture without having the hope that I get to embrace death (embrace Jesus) in a few minutes. I hear and read all sorts of remarks pertaining to torture without death, such as how the spirit and body seem to separate and how much Jesus' Spirit intervenes and helps the person. And, I remind myself of that comfort when I think of torture. But, still, I get nervous and my palms sweat.

I am certain that this why I admire the Persecuted Church. They are tortured and remain faithful to Jesus.
Perfect love drives out fear... ~ 1 John 4:18
Yes, LORD, perfect me in love. Drive out this silly fear. Help me to be able rely on the fact that You will not desert me in such a time of need for I can be confident that Your Spirit will help me to endure and stay strong. Thank You, Jesus!

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

A Birthday Babe

  • Happy Ash Wednesday! And Lent begins... I've been reading some really good stuff on Lent lately. Here are some good quotes from Ann Voskamp: "Don’t think of lent as about working your way to salvation. Think of it as working out your salvation... our sacrificing that we might become more like Christ in His sacrifice... failing lent? It is a good Lent because this Lenten Lament of my sin — it is preparing me for the Easter Joy of my Savior... Lent gives me this gift: the deeper I know the pit of my sin, the deeper I’ll drink from the draughts of joy... She who knows her sins much, loves much, and the road to heaven is paved with the realization that I deserve hell." What am I doing? For the next 40 days, I am going to hide in the office (to get away from the craziness) while Ricky cooks dinner in the evenings in order to read my Bible, pray, and listen to my Father. I am way excited! {My Lenten celebration was inspired by this post.}
  • Micaiah has worked his way up to sleeping between 10-12 hours at night. Ricky and I just slept for 8.5 hours uninterrupted a few nights ago since the beginning of Micaiah's pregnancy! We have four thumbs up ;)
  • Ricky's grandparents flew in from Arizona to visit their great-grandkids! They came with Ricky's parents to celebrate Aolani's birthday :) I will mostly just let the pictures below illustrate our birthday bonanza weekend.

We made a Berry Cobbler for her birthday dessert.

  • Aolani's antics: repeat the names of her family over and over all day (Mommy, Daddy, baby, Wadi), bounces on her donkey so high that she gets air (trying to get a video), goes behind the bathroom door to poopy and then stands in front of the commode to wipe and flush (she really wants to be potty trained!), and is a ridiculously happy child (every one comments on it constantly).

Four generations

  • Verse to memorize this week: Romans 6:11 ~ In the same way, count yourselves dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Birthdays, Bows, and Burps

  • Little Miss Aolani turns two in two days! We did go to South Carolina over the weekend for Ricky to take another test for his career. He thinks he did well... My parents met us there to help attend to me and the kiddos. We also celebrated her birthday with them while we were there by going out for ice cream!
  • Valentine's Day: I wish I could share with you that we did something romantic, or creative, or even thrifty. But, we both forgot it was V-Day until lunch. We got pizza for dinner, put the kids to bed, popped popcorn, put a movie in, and I fell asleep on the couch in less than 10 minutes! This is the real life of the DiMartino parents :) Maybe next year...

  • Aolani's antics: nurses and burps her baby (a bunny named Buttercup), acts sweeter towards me (hmmm...), helps me take laundry out of the washer and start another load, loves to say Oh My! (see video below), enjoys stickers, paints on the walls with the grease from door hinges, and is back to refusing diaper changes :( We had an all out battle of the wills last week -- I trapped her in a corner and told her that we would stay there until she got on my lap for a diaper change. 45 minutes!

  • At two months, Micaiah is 24" long, 10.6 lbs, and cute as a button! All he needs is a t-shirt that reads I like boobs ;) [His mommy's , of course!]

  • Micaiah is officially a thumb-sucker.

  • Verse to memorize this week: Psalm 130:5-6 ~ I wait for the Lord, I expectantly wait, and in His word do I hope. I am looking and waiting for the Lord more than watchmen for the morning, I say, more than watchmen for the morning.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Because of Jesus

“Because Jesus was strong for me, I am free to be weak;
because Jesus won for me, I am free to lose;
because Jesus was someone, I am free to be no one;
because Jesus was extraordinary, I am free to be ordinary;
because Jesus succeeded for me, I am free to fail.”

~ Tullian Tchividjian

Friday, February 10, 2012

Tim Tebow Fan (Or Not)

This ONE minute video is too good not to share -- enjoyable and well-done :)

Aolani LOVES it, as you can see, and is always asking for it!

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Giggles All Around

  • Ricky is trying to get a higher certification in Court Reporting. He had a written exam this past weekend (a day-trip he took alone), and he has a tougher verbal component this weekend in South Carolina. So, we will go there as a family. My parents will meet us to help take care of us (and celebrate little missy's 2nd birthday).
  • We had a family from our church over for dinner this past weekend, and they have a 5-year old girl and 8-year old boy that played hard with Aolani. I think she had the time of her life!
Preparing for the Super Bowl
  • We finally got around to measuring our little runt. Aolani weighed about 25 lbs (25th percentile for her age) and was 32" tall (10th percentile for her age).
  • One of my favorite things she is saying is that she calls frogs ribbies :)
  • She is not only reading to herself, but she has begun to sing dejus (Jesus) over and over!!
  • Micaiah has begun to sweetly coo this past week. AND, just tonight, he could not stop smiling at me while nursing so much that he broke out in a giggle-fest responding to my laughs -- first laugh and my heart just melted.
  • Verse to memorize this week: Hebrews 10:23 ~ Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Good Form

"I would maintain that thanks are the highest form of thought, and that gratitude is happiness doubled by wonder." ~ G.K. Chesterton

"I have seen people copy the whole Bible by hand in notebooks so they can have their own copy. The Bible is the scariest weapon in the world." ~ Christian worker in Iran

"We deserve nothing but hell. If you think you deserve heaven, take it from me, you are not a Christian." ~ Martyn Lloyd-Jones

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Spectacles and Spectaculars

  • Ricky's work colleagues held a surprise baby shower for us last week. Well, I did not know about it. Anyway, Micaiah received a lot of board books (which we desperately had want of as Aolani destroyed all of hers). Since Aolani opened all the gifts and might of thought they were hers, she screamed and cried "Books! Books!" as they were being packed up for us to leave. Everyone was so sad for her. She is such a bookaholic ;)
  • We also got to cancel doctor appointments last week because we had to clean our kitchen and laundry room floor after the washer emptied all of its water onto the floor. And, the dryer aspect of our washer/dryer-in-one has been broken for eight weeks now. I have been hanging up every load of laundry ever since. Not a big deal -- if you have a place to hang-dry, which I do not. The repair man finally came and "fixed" it, without the "fixing" part happening. {Exhale.}
  • Huge blessing: Several people were wanting to help us; so, every week we have two women that come over for a few hours to do whatever I ask (sweep, wash dishes, change diapers, start dinner...). Also, one lady and her 10 year-old daughter come over once-a-week to play with Aolani for a little while. Today, the girl commented that she was tired from Aolani having too much energy and wearing her out ;) Tell me about it!
  • The Spectacle: Earlier this week when Aolani awoke from her nap, I went in to get her and was completely speechless once I turned on the light. There she stood in her crib. Naked. And, covered with poop. She had taken off her clothes, removed her poopy diaper, and proceeded to smear it everywhere possible -- the crib, the floor, the crib tent, the sheets, her body... Remarkably, her outfit and stuffed animals only suffered mild casualties, comparatively. Yeah, I was stunned and dumbfounded. It took me an hour just to take care of her (praise God for grace in letting the baby nap the whole time Aolani desperately needed my attention). I left the crib for Ricky ("We have a big surprise for you Daddy, but you might want to change your clothes first!"). She made the mess before falling asleep in it. She suffered enough punishment just having to sleep in and breathe her poop, so I did not need to do any more. She was traumatized by it all because she did not say a word for almost an hour once I got her, did what I asked, and nursed for a long time (for comfort) afterwards. Let's just say that I don't think she will do that again?!
  • Busy week, it was.
  • Micaiah: sleeps all night (6-8 hours at once; woohoo!), is getting a nice bald spot on the back of his head (just like Aolani did), and smiles (big and bright) :)
  • Let me say that just waking up once at night to tend to the baby is so breathtakingly grand.
  • However, Micaiah was constipated the entire day after he first slept through the night (at 6 weeks). He was uncomfortable and in pain. Poor fella. He cried and cried. Except when I nursed him; so, that was what we did all day.
  • Aolani's antics: says new word and sounds every day, does not need bribes to get on my lap for a diaper change or naptime, copies everything Ricky does, adores and flirts with herself in front the mirror, tries really hard to jump, calls me "Mommy" (finally), points at things and declares who uses or owns the object...

  • Still working on memorizing last week's verses: 2 Corinthians 10:3-5 ~ For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does. The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.