Andrew Wakes

Andrew was awake today and the nurse took his oxygen bubble off for a quick picture. They tried to decrease his oxygen, but he didn't like it. Looks like he needs help for a little longer. We are thankful to the Lord that he is here and everyone is safe; so we will pray and be patient.  


From Bummer to Blessing: Andrew is Here!


Andrew, our ninth child, was due Aug 14. This morning Dana woke up with heavy bleeding and we headed to the hospital! The doctors concluded that Dana had placenta praevia, which is when the placenta is in the wrong place (covering the cervix). This can be dangerous for mom and baby so they recommended (not a strong enough word) an immediate c-section. Dana did NOT want to have a c-section and we were not really ready to have a baby today. That was the bummer part.

The blessing part became more obvious as the doctors saw how serious the condition could have been if not detected when it was. The greatest blessing, of course, is that Andrew is here!

His name is Andrew Vernon. Vernon is the middle name of my dad, my grandpa, and Dana's dad, and the first name of Dana's great grandpa. He was born at 11:54am, July 29, weighing 7 lb. 12 oz. and 18 1/2" long.

He has had trouble breathing so far and has been in the nursery with oxygen and an IV. Pneumonia, other infections, and immature long development have now been ruled out. He just has fluid in his lungs as a result of the c-section. This should resolve itself. In the meantime, though, this could result in jaundice and difficulties in nursing. Please pray these things are not a problem so we don't have to stay in the hospital all week!

Meeting a WWII Veteran

My daughter Bethany played in a piano recital at a nursing home last Friday afternoon. After the presentation I met an amazing man. His name was Jim Cole. Mr. Cole had blue ball cap on with big yellow letters: “I am a WWII Veteran.” The first thing he said to me was, “We should have sung ‘God Bless America.’” I introduced my boys to him and explained that they had been studying, reading, and writing about war. He told us that he was in WWII for a long time as an airplane pilot. He flew “the biggest bombers we had.” His summary of the war for the boys: “Germany and Japan were trying take over the world. And they almost did. About the only countries left were America and England. We had to stop them.”

By this time a dozen kids and adults had gathered around to listen to Mr. Cole. He was old and bent, but his clear voice and build revealed that he had once been a very strong man. “The Germans and Japanese had better planes than anyone at the beginning of the war. Faster and better maneuverability.” He stressed the importance of learning and being ready. “If someone tells you to go bomb a certain country, you can’t do it unless you know where it is on the map! When I was your age, I knew where the countries were on a map.” He leaned forward and shook his finger at the boys. “Learn! Learn! Don’t be a dummy! If we have to go to war again, it will be you boys who have to fight. Learn and be ready! You’ve got to think and use your brain. Use your head for more than a hat rack.”

While we were talking Anna and Meredith Riggins and Chloe and Emma Curtis prepared to sing “God Bless America.” They sang in harmony and it was beautiful! By this time there was no one left in the room but Mr. Cole and some of us who came for the recital. As they started to sing, his shaky, bruised hands reached for the walker sitting in front of him. He slowly pulled himself to his feet. He sang with them. His face was beaming. It may not be possible for these young ladies who sang to know what an amazing Christmas present that song was to Mr. Cole.

I was inspired by Mr. Cole’s strength, his sense of honor, his sense of responsibility, his desire to be ready, and his pride for our country.

Isaac is Born!

After waiting 9 days past the due date, Isaac David is finally born! We arrived at the hospital around 3am. At 3:15 our midwife checked Dana and told us she was already 10 cm. dilated! The rest was smooth and quick and Isaac was born at 3:58am. He is 8 lb 4 oz, 21' long. Both mom and baby are in perfect health. We are thankful for this answer to many prayers beforehand. Here are the beautiful baby and mom:

New Chicken Coop

Today we built a new chicken coop for our much smaller flock and for winter protection. We bought all our supplies at the ReStore for less than $20. You can see the laying shelf inside, the door for collecting eggs, and handles on the sides for moving.

Baby Countdown

We have two weeks until Isaac's due date (Thanksgiving Day)! I'm not sure what that means since he probably won't actually be born on that day, and there always the possibility he is not a he. So . . . we are nearing the general vicinity of the time that our next baby will be born! If he is a boy, then we will be even with four boys and four girls. We are getting ready and excited around here. We are all grateful for God's blessing of this new life.

But this addition will actually make #11 in our household. We have added another family member this year. Brock Buchanan is a young man who moved to the area to attend ASU and ended up coming to our church. The short story: he lived with us over the summer, moved into an apartment this Fall, but decided he liked living with us better! So now he's back and part of the family.

And now for an unrelated, random, cute picture. Kathryn is three (front) and Samantha is one (back).

Back from Camping

We returned late last week from an almost two week camping trip. We are grateful to inherit a pop-up tent camper from my Dad. We had a great time at Timberlake Campground near Bryson City, NC (west of Asheville in the Smokey Mountains). Here is a picture of our camp. You can see a creek runs right next to it.