Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Snapshots

I came across some pictures my sister-in-law's husband took when they visited us last summer and thought they provided some nice snapshots of the city.

The playgrounds here are called Tot Lots,
and the number corresponds to the cross street (this one's at 110th St).

This is just across the street from us.
Nice to have a diner so close!
Rosie has been here 3 times so far and has done great every time.

Also nice to have markets so close.
One of the cashiers here takes Rosie's picture on her iPhone
every time she comes in... and tries to give us a "Rosie discount."

Bibimbap is a Korean dish with meat and vegetables served over rice
then all mixed together. Jady likes it more than I do... but I should give it another chance!

Riverside Park, near where we live.
That's New Jersey across the Hudson River.

Again, the Hudson from the park and the George Washington Bridge. 

And a few of my own pictures...

Best view from our apartment on a beautiful day

Our oak tree has sprouted!!!

From this...

... to this!

A few days old...

... and now 20 weeks.

Monday, August 12, 2013

An Open Letter to my Mother

Dear Mom:

There are so many times--now that I have my own little girl--that I have thought about you with fresh appreciation, knowing a little better the ways you've taken care of me through the years.

And I don't just mean the routine work of changing diapers, fixing meals, and doing laundry (although that is huge!). I realize that one of the most important acts of service you've shown me was being willing to put those tasks on hold just so you could be with your children. Thank you for not being too busy providing for our physical needs to spend time speaking to our souls.

Even still, when I visit, I know you will just sit on the couch and listen (or talk!) for as long as I need you. In a world where it seems like everyone is hurrying and scurrying, this means a lot. 

I was always a little worried that once I had your first grandchild, I might need to take the backseat for awhile... that now your attention would be on a precious little one, and I would need to get out of the way. But to my relief, when you showed up at the hospital after Rosie was born, you saw me first. And you smiled at me with a love that I knew would have traveled any distance even if there wasn't a new baby, too. 

And the first time you left after Rosie was born? I will never forget the way you explained to me that you knew it would be hard to leave your grandchild, but you hadn't expected it to be so hard to leave me, too. And then we cried together on a park bench like mother, like daughter... while dad ran away from the female emotions as fast as he could! :)

You have modeled for me a gentle and quiet spirit: calmness even when things are falling apart, submission to authority even when you may not agree or understand, and self-control to simply do life's plain, common work without complaining or grumbling. 

After I had Rosie, you have encouraged me to be a better mom not by having more "me time" but by having more God time. You made sure I knew the importance of daily studying the Word, even now that time is so precious. And your prayers with me while we are together, and your prayers for me when we are apart... that has given me such strength and confidence. I know that whenever I text or call to ask for prayers, you will respond, "I've already been praying for you today!" Thank you for your example.

I hope I can be to Rosie what you have been to me. 

Love,
Julianne


Friday, August 2, 2013

No Slight Thing

Life continues to speed ahead.

This is old news by now, but we have decided to stay in our apartment for another year. Because moving in NYC (and with a baby) is such a daunting task, we are doing our best to make this place workable for a little while longer. It is small, but it is still more than we need. Running water, electricity, indoor plumbing, and comfortable temperatures are luxuries our forefathers would certainly have enjoyed. We are thankful to be in a good place in a good neighborhood here.

Jady is working hard to provide for me and Rosie. He does a good job juggling all of his responsibilities and manages to make it cheerfully through an ever-changing schedule of studies with a variety of people. He also just launched a new outreach a few weeks ago called the Daily Phone Devotional. If you have two minutes, give it a call: 1-800-560-DEVO.

In Rosie news, she is almost 4 months now and enjoys bouncing in her jumperoo, grabbing on to fabric, chewing and sucking on her hands, smiling at herself in the mirror, riding down the cold aisles of the grocery, being outside, sitting in our laps at restaurants (especially if she can watch people or cars going by), blowing raspberries and spit bubbles, and listening to Mommy or Daddy sing. She hates tummy time (unless she's propped up) and especially hates riding in her car seat. The best word to describe her personality is vigorous. She is always ready for action and loves to be moving.


We continue to be won over by her charm. How is it that such a little person can have so many feelings to express? How can a 12 pound creature possess such ability to communicate and love? A Dickens quote I have been pondering lately: "It is not a slight thing when they, who are so fresh from God, love us." We are so thankful God has sent Rosie our way, and we recognize it is no slight thing to receive her. Oh, what a wonderful and yet terrifying task awaits us as we seek to train her in God's ways!