Thursday, January 22, 2015

Overflowing With Personality: Our Daughter Anna

Anna, at the age of 6 1/2, is a character.  

Currently her favorite show is Good Luck Charlie. The main character in the show has a video diary that the  show is created around. 

One particular evening Anna decided that she too wanted to make a video diary. She asked me to curl her hair like the main character's and I agreed to film her. However, in her video diary she just made a bunch of stuff up. So no, I do not walk around the house drinking soda and eating popcorn, and Paul does not watch TV like crazy.


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I asked her permission to post this video on my blog and she said yes. That is a BIG deal for her because  she is typically a private child. 

Because I like to encourage my children to do what they are passionate about, I asked her if she would be interested in trying out for the local play of Rapunzel.  Her response?  "But mommy, I don't like doing things in front of people. I'm too shy."

Fair enough.

So, for now, I will enjoy the mini glimpses of her performances that I eye as I walk through the house.   

Though she sometimes allows me to sit down and watch her "show," most of the time she becomes embarrassed when she sees anyone watching her.

It is such a treat to watch this little person's personality blossom.


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Paul's Exercise Video




Last night I taught Paul how to do a plank. I told him that it works all the muscles in the body. 

I guess I might have exaggerated with the ALL statement.  

He promptly informed me that it did not work your eye lid muscles and would not put that to rest.

I sent a text to some friends about this child's need to always be right. One friend sent back that he should move his tongue in and out because the planks do not work the tongue muscle. Another friend sent back that he should breathe in and out through his nose while doing planks in order to work his nose muscles. 

Well, Paul being Paul, he did just that.  

Another friend sent message that she would need a video of Paul doing said exercise. 

Paul was more than willing to shoot a video showing how he can infact work every single muscle in his body at the SAME time.

Enjoy! 

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Thursday, January 8, 2015

Living Fully In The Moment

“Time is a relentless river. It rages on, a respecter of no one.
And this, this is the only way to slow time: Fully enter time’s swift current, enter into the current moment with the weight of all your attention, you slow the torrent with the weight of being all here." - Ann Voskamp


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Thursday, January 1, 2015

2014: Our Year in Pictures

This  past year (2014) I was intentional about keeping our photos in order. Because of that, when New Years Eve came around I had an easier time of reflecting on our past year. Boy was it a year. I didn't realize all the stuff that we had done until I looked over all the photos.

 

January

New Years Eve of 2013 was spent with our friends Colt and Ashley in South Carolina.  We stopped to stay the night at their house on our way to North Caroline.  


We spent the first week of 2014 at a beach house with Roger's Family.

While in North Carolina we took the kids to see the Medieval Times Dinner Theater

February

In February a  big snow storm came rolling through which caused the kids to miss an entire week of school. We had the neighborhood kids over for smoothies and dance parties.


March

In March my mom came up to spend the day with us and Anna got her first (and only this far) manicure.

Layla (Roger's sister) also came up in march for a visit and we went exploring in the woods because the weather was unusually warm.

April

In April a Jasper Family meeting was called to order. My mother-in-law Scarlette had been accepted as a CBF Missionary and needed help brainstorming for the upcoming year.

We also had more warm weather and took advantage of it by going to the Zoo with friends.

May

May was an incredible month. I turned 30!  My cardiology team celebrated this milestone with me at the clinic. 

In May Roger and I also celebrated our 10th wedding anniversary. We celebrated this 1st decade by spending a week alone in the Big Apple . . .  New York City.

my favorite spot in NYC

the house we stayed at on 19th street

We attended our 1st Broadway Musical. Wicked

June

In June our youngest, Anna Catherine, graduated from Kindergarten.


We traveled to Georgia to watch Roger's mother, Scarlette,  commissioned as CBF Field Personnel.

And took part in the wedding ceremony of our dear friends Kelsey and Tyler

Roger trying his best to direct the rehearsal in the rain.

 July

In July we took Paul and Anna to the Frazier History Museum. Paul was insanely excited to see all the armor.

We also spend many lazy summer days with friends and around the house in our own wonderland of a backyard.



In July we also said "goodbye for now" to Roger's sister Layla and her husband Aaron. Shortly after this picture they got on an airplane for Micronesia. They are currently teaching High School there.

August

In August our friends Colt and Ashley, who we visited at the first of the year in South Carolina, came back to Kentucky to get married. Roger was asked to officiate the beautiful wedding. 


Anna started gymnastics for the first time.  Which, it turns out, she is awesome at!

And the kids started 3rd and 1st grade. Can you tell little Paul is not excited about summer being over?  Can you tell that I am totally ready for a break from parenting all day long?

September

 In September Paul started back his soccer season.

In July Paul turned 9 but we were unable to have a big party for him until September. He requested a Scottish themed party. My friend Rachel made him a bagpipe cake and my father in law brought his DJ equipment out to pump Scottish music into our backyard.


We also took mini getaways into Louisville for ice cream and cake at the Pie Kitchen.

October

In October Roger, the kids, and I traveled to Pennsylvania where we stayed in a condo in the Pocono Mountains.



Days were spent sipping coffee, playing in the backyard and hiking down the Delaware.

  

 Because we were so close to New York City we opted to take the kids there for a day trip. 
traveling to see Lady Liberty

Exploring Ellis Island

People watching in Time Square
At the end of October we celebrated Halloween back in Kentucky with our neighbors. Our street REALLY gets into Halloween which makes it fun for all ages.

 



November

November was a crazy month. I was trying to finish out my semester strong and the kids were getting very much ready for winter break.The long nights of homework, followed by the hours spent working in the ER, as well as the hours spent traveling on the road (6hrs a week), were wearing me down. But we tried to take breaks when we could and spend as much time together as possible.

 

We were out to dinner and Anna convinced us that we NEEDED to take a carriage ride.

Took time to visit my grandma Beaulah in Northern Kentucky.

December

Like for most people, December for us is a bit busy, but not nearly as the previous month. However, I should not speak for Roger. Pastors always have a rough December. Any and everything seems to take place during advent.

Christmas Dinner at the church
 While Roger was busy with his pastoral duties, the kids and I spent cold lazy days binge watching Christmas movies.


Oh, and sometime during the month of December Paul had to have tests run on his heart. This was just a precaustion because of my heart history. However, he was super excited to have his heart looked at and requested that I go with him and take photos. He told the nurse "you don't need to call a chaplain in for me. I already have one. My mom is a chaplain."   It is sweet to see my child proud of what I do.


This year Roger and I opted to celebrate Christmas with the kids on the morning of Christmas Eve. We had all day to lay around, open presents, laugh, sip coffee, and eat candy, before he had to head into work to prepare for the Christmas Eve service. Now that the kids are older it is important to me to start our own family traditions.

The simple kid got his magic tree house journal.

She begged for high heel leather boots and that is what she got.
 
New Years Eve was low key this year. Rog and I let the kids stay up late ( they barely made it to midnight), we munched on left over food, played board games and watched movies.  When the year rolled over to 2015 I stood on the front porch and blew this little horn that Anna had gotten from a friend. It embarrassed the kids which made me stand out there even longer and blow even harder.

We attempted to take a New Year selfie but Paul was still mad at me for standing on the front porch blowing a horn.   The poor dog is probably thinking 2015 is going to be another rough year for him.


 Happy 2015!!!   









 


Sunday, November 23, 2014

Hospital Chaplain: My first Infant Death

On Friday evening I sat in the floor holding a young mother as her 2month old passed away. It was my first infant death as a hospital chaplain. I sat in the floor with the mother clinging tightly to me, and  rocked back and forth with her. As we rocked I whispered in her ear the only prayer I could muster up in that dark moment. "Lord. Lord. Please Lord. Help. Lord. Lord. Please Lord Help."  We said this over and over again between tears.

It is Sunday afternoon and I still haven't processed all of the emotions. Mainly because I haven't had the time. There were other trauma's that night and other families that needed my shoulder to cry on and my prayers for strength. I didn't get to bed until after 4am. All of Saturday was devoted to getting caught up on sleep.

Today at church the song Blessed Be the Name of the Lord by Matt Redman was sung. The lyrics really touched me today.

 Blessed Be Your name
When I'm found in the desert place
Though I walk through the wilderness
Blessed Be Your name

Every blessing You pour out
I'll turn back to praise
When the darkness closes in, Lord
Still I will say

As a hospital chaplain I feel that I have been called by God to walk along side people in their darkest hours. It doesn't get much darker than losing a baby.

When the doctor informed the mother of the death and the mother collapsed into my arms, honostly questioned why MY GOD, creator and sustainer of all, would allow such a thing to happen to such an innocent little life. In that moment I had to make a conscious effort to fall back on my faith.

You give and take away
You give and take away
My heart will choose to say
Lord, blessed be Your name

As the family gathered around the tiny lifeless body of their 2 month old baby, I offered a prayer. It was the hardest prayer I have had to pray thus far. Through gritted teeth I thanked God for her precious little life and asked God to surround the family in their time of sorrow.  After the prayer I made the sign of the cross on her itty bitty forehead and said "May you rest in the arms of Christ." The mother refused to leave the hospital until I whispered in her ear that I would take care of her baby. 

To honor my word to the mother, I went back into the trauma room and helped the nurse tuck the precious little baby into the body bag. As I tucked the blankets around the lifeless body of another woman's child, I felt honored to be the hands of Christ.

As I left the hospital early that next morning I couldn't help but have a smile on my face as I said "This is what being a Christian is all about."  Believe me when I say that there is no way I would be able to do this kind of work without the power of Christ. I give Him all the credit. I'm just so amazed that He is able to use little ol' me.




Sunday, September 28, 2014

Memories

As a young girl I spent most of my time at my maternal grandparent's house. All my positive memories have the backdrop of the family farm. I still remember the day that PawPaw bought it. It was beyond exciting. For years I had sat in the big tree in MawMaw and PawPaw's front yard overlooking the no longer maintained piece of land. To my little girl self it seemed like a desert, with its rolling hills of dirt. You can imagine my excitement when PawPaw came into the house one evening announcing that the farm had been put up for auction.

I have a vivid memory of tagging along with PawPaw on the day of the auction. He pulled out on the land in his truck, popped open the tail gate for me to sit on, and strategically placed his folding chair that he always carried in the back of his truck with him, right in front of the auctioneer. In his relaxed country PawPaw kind of way, he filled his pipe with Prince Albert tobacco and lit it up. He spent the next how ever long it was, chewing on his pipe and lifting his trucker cap to scratch his head. After a few grunts and head nods the farm was ours.

Being that the 100 acres had sat untouched for God knows how long, the first major task was getting rid of all the groundhogs. Those little critters had taken over. Being the smart old man that he was, Pawpaw opened the farm to anyone interested in making a little extra cash. He offered $50 for every groundhog that was killed and brought to his door step. My uncles wasted no time and immediately got to ground hog hunting.

However, there was one specific groundhog that no one could manage to shoot. He was a sneaky one! Deciding that he would not be outsmarted by a groundhog my Pawpaw called my uncle Travis to bring the backhoe over to dig him out. I, having overheard the conversation, asked to tag along on this crazy little adventure.

I sat in the back of the truck watching pawpaw directing my uncle Travis on the backhoe and my uncle David, who had brought his shot gun over. We had a shooter, a digger, and a director. "Dig right over there Trav. Yep right there. Oh there that damn thing is. Shoot it David., shoot that damn thing. You were too slow, it got away. Dig over there Trav.,right there. I said right there.”

Eventually the ground hog was shot, the hole covered over, and grass planted. It took several years to get the farm up and running. There was a barn to rebuild, brush to clear out, a fence to be put up, and livestock to be bought. I watched it all from the tail gate of PawPaw's truck. On cool fall evenings when I sit on my front porch I am reminded of the man who's blood runs through my veins. He was the first person that I felt truly believed in me and was proud of me, no matter what I did or did not do. What would he think of me now? His first grand-baby is 30 years old, sitting on her front porch, in her bare feet, typing out a story of him, while her barefooted 6 year old daughter eats an apple beside her. Knowing my Pawpaw,I am sure he would be proud. Yes, there once lived a man that made me feel as if I hung the moon.

I have a small paper due tomorrow and it took all the will power in me to start typing on it. I really hate doing ANYTHING school related on a Sunday afternoon.  But alas, yesterday was spent celebrating the birth of our son Paul, so naturally, I put the paper off.

So there I was (like every good story starts) sitting on the couch typing away when I heard a horrid scream coming from Anna. The poor child had put her hand in a bowl of scalding hot soup. How? well, Roger and I are exhausted and didn't feel like doing the whole dinner round up so I made a big pot of vegetable soup and we are feeding the kids as they ask. He had just filled a bowl of hot soup up for Anna and somehow she managed to fall over, putting her hand in the bowl.  SCREAM.

Welp.  There goes the paper writing. I have a poor little girl with a burnt hand.

Roger is currently running to the store to get little kid pain meds. (we had run out apparently.  wonderful timing. I know, we ROCK!) Anna has finally calmed down from screaming bloody murder and I am laughing at the fact that while she was screaming I, feeling helpless, totally asked "would you like for me to pray?"  I blame the chaplain internship. She simply looked at me puzzled and started screaming EVEN LOUDER.

Oh Sunday afternoon. The afternoon in every week that I feel as if I have been hit in the face with a 2x4.

This journey of life that we are on is so strange, but I am beyond thankful that I have someone like Mr Roger Jasper to journey along with me.   

Alrighty then, I guess I best get back to typing out that paper..... and doing the laundry..... and tending to the kids.   Oh Christ have mercy.