Sunday, November 26, 2017

The Covenants We Make

Whew!  It's been quite a week.  I hope you all enjoyed your Turkey Day.  Our week was all about making and keeping sacred covenants.  From renewing our temple recommends to blessing our new baby to seeing our first-born ordained to the Aaronic Priesthood, it has been nothing short of a spiritually action-packed week.

I'll start with today and work backwards, I guess.  This was Coy and my first Sunday back at church after his arrival into our family.  Luckily, my Dad was able to join us for Guy's ordination.

He also stayed a while and played with us after church.  It's neat to see my family which 18 months ago looked like a family of mostly girls, suddenly blossom into a family of equal parts women & equal parts future priesthood brethren! :)  It's truly amazing what God can do with our lives in a very short amount of time.

Anyway, I'm happy for Guy.  He advanced from Primary to the Young Men's program and also received his Faith in God award which we've worked on together pretty consistently over the years.

Age 11/12 has been a bit of a trying time for us.  Has anyone else found this to be the case?  I'm so glad Guy now has the structure and principles of the Priesthood to help guide him through this next part of his adolescence, because I was truly running out of ideas.  More and more, I see the need to step back and let the principles that we have taught him rest upon his soul and let him take these next steps as independently as he seems to want.  Some steps in life must be taken alone (although I'm of course always here for when he will eventually need me again! :)  

As for our other children, we're all settling in ok with having a new baby around.  My 19-month old Val loves the baby.  My girls do too.

Scarlett, my ten-year old is so very helpful...beyond helpful, she is my second in command...always willing to jump up and see to every need.  What a blessing she is to me.

The other great event of the week is that we blessed Coy the day after Thanksgiving.  I have to say that although it didn't happen exactly the way I would have had it, what mattered most was that my husband had the power and authority to bless him with the priesthood.  And above all else, these are the things that matter.

 When my mother-in-law came to visit last week, she kept pointing out that I have "two families" now, my older children (ages 12, 10, 9) and my younger children (ages 5, 19 months, and newborn).  While I tend to not want to see it that way, in a way her point is valid.  One group is advancing to spiritual and personal independence, while the other is almost completely dependent on me for everything.  One group has been instructed well and taught over years of family home evenings, scripture study, made covenants, etc and must now put what they've been taught into practice, while with the other group, we are basically starting over from scratch!

The great promise in all of this is that we have all of these varied personalities, experiences, and testimonies now in our family to help each other along the path from oldest to youngest.  It will be very interesting to see how the next chapter of our parenting and family journey unfolds!  Wish us luck...we'll need it!!! :)

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Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Our boon baby is here!

Hallelujah, we had our baby!

Coy Boone Christensen joined our family on Monday, October 30th, 2017.  Just about everything about the labor was different from my others, but his actual entrance into the world was marked by peace, quiet, and calm.  It was very sweet.  And he is just wonderful!

I am super excited, first that he came, second, that he came on the due date that I had in my head, third that he is a boy, and fourth, I'm just so happy that I am not pregnant anymore.  You know, you just get to that point where you're mentally and physically and in every way possible just at your max.  And then one day, it's all over.  And that day finally came for me.  It's amazing the lessons we women learn through childbearing, child-rearing, or even having those blessings withheld.  Powerful lessons one way or another.

I am so grateful for the six major blessings in my life--my children.  Each child different and delightful in their own ways.  Each a gift I am still unwrapping as the days and years pass.  I don't know that there will be anymore children joining our family, but I am sure feeling super blessed to have had these!  I turned 40 a few weeks ago, and I really wouldn't have wanted to spend my 40th birthday doing anything else.

I am so grateful to each of my children (and my husband)  who've helped so much during my pregnancy and beyond to facilitate welcoming another baby into our family.  It's never easy.  It always turns things upside-down for a time until the upheaval settles into a new normal.  And we get stronger again as we adapt and learn how to do things better together.

One major thing we've been dealing with is that Coy has had jaundice, which we've never experienced before. Because of our non-matching blood types (and Coy being Coombs positive), Coy's case was a little bit more serious than most.  So we found ourselves in the ER the day after we returned from the hospital, but we've been working hard to get his bilirubin number lowered and I think he's going to be just fine.

Through this, I've had wonderful women support me and my family by stepping in to babysit last-minute and bring meals, etc.  I am so grateful for these generous friends.  Their help made it much easier to deal with the unexpected doctor's visits and ER trip.  And having my Mom come help has been awesome as well.

Anyway, that's all.  Just giving you the long and the short of it.  If you're wondering about his name, we chose Boone as in "boon" because he is a blessing to our family.  We chose Coy partially because we wanted another three-letter name for our third boy, but liked Coy for it's old English meaning: quiet, calm, reserved.
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