Chris's Change of Command

Chris's Change of Command

Daily Bible Verse

Saturday, November 24, 2007

God is at work...

It has been a very difficult but amazing week for the Steele family. I was so adamant about not going to Atlanta for Thanksgiving. I didn't want to make the 9 hour drive to and from and then turn around 3 weeks later to make the drive again for Christmas. My sister convinced me to come after begging and promising me some live in babysitting so that I could get some much needed rest. We drove to Atlanta last Saturday and arrived at my sister's home around 6:00 pm that night.
The next morning I went to brunch with my brother, Mom, Dad, and children. We all met back at Holly's that afternoon and put the kids down for nap. That is when I realized something was not quite right with the pregnancy. I asked my Mom and Dad to take me to Northside Hospital just to get things checked out and make sure nothing was wrong. We spent the rest of the afternoon and evening at the ER finding out that Chris and I had lost our precious baby. For some reason only know to our Heavenly Father, He took the baby home to be with Him. I have cried many tears of pain and grief this week, especially because my wonderful husband is not able to be here with me. But in all the pain and hurt, God has blessed me with a heart of thanks. God made it possible to be here in Atlanta surrounded by my family during this difficult time. He has already blessed Chris and I with two beautiful children for which I am so very grateful. God has always been faithful and I know that he will continue to be. He knows what is best for our family, and I trust in Him completely.
Thanks to all of you for your well wishes and prayers. Our God is faithful and true, and He will get us through this tragedy.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

One Last Hug for a While

It has been almost two weeks since Chris left. I've had my ups and downs, but we are slowly but surely getting the hang of things. I have spoken to him 3 times and he sounds good. He is extremely busy and sounds very positive about their mission and how things are going. The count down to June is officially on!

The kids and I have kept ourselves busy with Halloween and the regular schedule around here. Luke dressed up as Diego the Animal Rescuer and Hayley was his sidekick, Baby Jaguar! They had so much fun trick or treating. This year is the first one that they really understood what was going on. I could see the wheels turning after the first house we stopped at for a treat. Both of their eyes got so big as the candy was put into their bags, and they turned to look at me like, "Did you see that, Mommy! Free candy!"

This past week it was Parent Observation Day at gymnastics. Luke was so excited to show me all of the things that he has been learning. I was impressed with how well he listened to his teachers and could do most of the tricks pretty well. Hayley also had to show me her tricks, although I see them every week because her class is a Mommy and Me class.

I am looking forward to the Holidays. I cannot wait to go home to Atlanta and be with our family. Christmas always seem to make time go so fast and when January rolls around we will have 2 months under our belt and 5 more to go.

As far as the pregnancy goes, I think I am turning the sickness corner. I still feel pretty yucky in the evenings, but morning and middle of the day are getting back to normal. My instinct tells me that this one is a boy, but I thought that Hayley was a boy too. I was SOOOOO wrong about that! I'll just have to wait and see. I think that my ultrasound will be scheduled for the 2nd week in January. Very exciting.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Chris is on the way HOME!

After 5 weeks of training in the desert of California, Chris should be home around 9:00pm tomorrow night. We are all so excited to see him that time is seeming to creep by right now. I know we only have a week until he leaves for his 7 month deployment, but we will take any time together that we can get.

Luke had a busy week. He has been taking swimming lessons on Monday and Wednesday afternoons. He is really starting to become more confident in the pool. He even tried to swim a little by himself on a noodle. After going all the way underwater, I thought we would never get him back in the pool. His teacher, Miss Tiffany, did a great job at convincing him that going under is all part of learning to swim like a big boy.

Luke also went on his first class field trip to Mike's Farm. I was able to go with him and we had so much fun. First we went to hear "Granny" tell us all about the Pioneer Days. She told us how they cooked, washed clothes, played games, etc. Luke found it all very interesting. Next, we went over to the barn for a sing along with Cowboy Earl! Definitely my favorite part of the trip. Luke even got on stage to help him sing "Happy Trails". After the music, we when on a hayride to pick our pumpkins and finally went to eat lunch. Luke and his buddy, Eric, had fun looking at all of the animals together. All in all , it was a great trip.

I took a picture of Hayley that describes her to a tee!

Part Hello Kitty princess, part truck driver (love the hat!). She is still working on potty training. We had a few great days of keeping her diaper dry but not so much clean, if you know what I mean. I just have to be patient and it will happen. She amazes me at how independent she is already. She tries to get dressed all by herself and she can get her shoes on sometimes. She talks a mile a minute with some of the funniest expressions. Who knows what the next day will bring with her. Everyday is a surprise!

Sunday, October 14, 2007

And baby makes 5!

So we are having another baby. What a joy and blessing. Chris and I are so excited that God has blessed us once again with the privilege and gift to raise a child. I am currently 9 weeks along and feeling pretty gross. The nausea is constant and I am extremely tired, but I know it is all for an unbelievable cause. Of course we are both sad that Chris will miss the pregnancy and birth for this child, but that is what a video camera is for, right? He is not expected home from Iraq until 3 weeks after my due date. God has chosen this time for us to have another child, so I know that he will take care of every detail.
Luke and Hayley are excited as well, although I don't know how much they get at this point. It will be fun to see their response as my belly grows and when they get to feel the baby move. I look forward to creating those memories with the two of them.
We are all counting down the days until Chris gets home from CA. He is expected to be back in about a week. He will then have 6 to 9 days before he leaves for Iraq. We will take every minute we can get until he has to go.
Well....I'm off to get anther bottle of ginger ale and lie down on the sofa (seems to be where I am most of the time lately). Until next time.......

Saturday, September 22, 2007

We Miss You Daddy!

Chris left last Monday for training out in California. He will be gone for about 5 weeks. When he returns, we will have less than a week before he leaves for Iraq. The kids are adjusting ok. They ask when Daddy is coming home pretty frequently. Luke always counts everyone at the dinner table. Lately he will count and when he gets to Chris's chair he says, "Mommy, somebody is missing! Daddy's not here. I sure do miss him." We love the Daddy Dolls that I ordered from Hug a Hero. Hayley sleeps with her doll every night. I kinda wish I had my own.

I did give Chris this Mizpah charm from James Avery for our anniversary. love it! He wears his half on his dogtags, and I have mine on a necklace with a cross that Chris gave me for Christmas two years ago. I also got a deployment bracelet to wear. Another idea I got from a friend. Everytime I look at the bracelet, I pray for Chris and his Marines.

The comment that I frequently get from others is, "You are so strong! I don't think I could do what you do." I have to say that it's not me that is strong, but my God that is strong! He is the one that has laid the plan for our family and I know that it is His perfect will that is unfolding in our lives. He gets me through everyday with joy not fear or saddness. Not to say that I don't miss Chris terribly to the point where my heartaches or worry sometimes, but God says in His word, "Do not be anxious about ANYTHING, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus." Philippians 4:6-7
I want to say thanks to those in advance for praying for Chris and his Marines while they are away. We do appreciate your support.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

So Much to Celebrate!

Well, we have had a busy week so far but, boy, has it been fun. Chris is still home on block leave. We enjoyed a night away this past weekend to celebrate our 8th anniversary. It doesn't seem possible that we have been married eight years and we have be together for eleven and a half! God has truly blessed our marriage. Chris loves and supports me in everything that I do. He is my best friend and hero (in the true since of the word)!

Luke started gymnastics and 4 year preschool this week. He is loving both. As I dropped him off at school this morning, he lovingly gave me a kiss and said, "I'll see you later Mommy! Have a good day!" Off he went to check out the centers and his new cubby spot. Some of his old buddies from his class last year are in his class again as well as some new faces. I love that he loves school so much! He is not too big on sharing everything that happened at school. Usually I get, "School was fun!" or "It was fine". Today I learned about a new friend named Danny and that he played chase on the playground. He also informed me that Mommy begins with the letter M (m was the letter of the day).

Hayley started gymnastics this week too. Her class is a Mommy and Me class. I need to remember to wear my workout clothes next week. I think I get as much if not more of a workout chasing her around the gym and helping her with all of her tricks. She absolutely loved everything about class. We sang and stretched at the beginning and then we moved to different stations around the gym. She loved the bars and balance beam. She not only wanted to walk forward and side ways on the beam, but she also tried walking backwards. Her little face just lit up each time she succeeded at something new. Her favorite thing about gym was the cool stamp she got on her hand at the end of class. You would think she won a gold medal.

My parents are coming in town to visit this weekend. We are all looking forward to their visit.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Gotta Love Mickey!

I just bought tickets to go and see Playhouse Disney Live On Tour! The show is not coming until March '08, but it will give us something to look forward to while Chris is away.

I think that I am more excited than the kids are at this point. I just love to see their faces and watch them dance and sing when we go to a show. We took Luke to see The Wiggles last year, and I couldn't stop watching him the whole time. Pure joy on his face!
Here they are watching Mickey Mouse Clubhouse (an every morning event). I remember lying on the floor with my head propped in my hands as a kid. My brother and I used to watch TV sitting in that position. Have you tried it lately? Not as comfortable as I remember.
Chris gets home tonight from 2 weeks in the field. His block leave starts next Monday and I am so excited to have him home with the family for 2 weeks. No big plans, just lots of family fun!

Thursday, August 9, 2007

Pre-deployment Brief

Tonight I have to attend Chris's battalion's pre-deployment brief. I cannot believe he is getting ready to leave again. He just got home in February, but here we are preparing for another 7 months without Daddy. I know that we will make it through. God is so faithful and supplies every need. I just dread the day he has to go. Deployment is hard on the kids and myself, but it is so hard for Chris. I hate that he has to miss another Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Both Chris and I feel strongly about his job and mission while he is away. We both know that we are making this sacrifice for a reason. He has seen such tremendous improvement since he was in Iraq last time. It gives me great hope for their country and their ability to succeed.

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

You tell 'em, sister!

So we are having lunch at Chick-fil-a (our favorite spot!) trying the beat the heat in J'ville today. My car thermostat said that the temp was 102! Anyway, we met some friends and ate our typical chicken nuggets, fries, and fruit cup.
Once we finished lunch, it was off to the indoor playground. Hayley and Luke were off and running with their friends and having a grand ol' time. Well, in come 3 or 4 "big boys" as Hayley calls them. They were a little rough and about 3 times her size. A couple of the boys went tearing past her and almost knocked her down. Did my sweet little princess cry and come running to Mama? Oh no! She turned and looked at them and yelled "STOP" at the top of her lungs with her hand out. Way to stand your ground little lady.

Sunday, August 5, 2007

Where does the time go?

Time goes so fast. We just celebrated Luke's 4th and Hayley's 2nd birthdays. I look at them and I am amazed at how quickly their "baby days" have passed, and we are moving closer to the preschool/schools days. Luke will begin 4 year preschool in a few weeks and I choke back the tears as I think of him growing up. Don't get me wrong, it is such a gift to get to watch the two of them grow, learn, and become the people God has made them to be. I just don't want to miss a moment! Happy Birthday my precious babes.