Thursday, May 20, 2010

She Was Watching

This girl...she's the one who can make me cry with her words.  At least a couple of times a week she will say something that will put me on my knees.
 Just the other day we were driving in the car and the song "She was watching"  by Mark Schultz came on.  I don't know if you've ever heard it but it's about a little girl who watches her daddy's relationship with the Lord and wants to be just like him.    We were singing along and came to the part about the daddy losing his job and how the mommy danced with him in the kitchen and Marina piped up from the backseat "Mommy! that's just like you and Daddy! Remember!"  Well....I lost it...I could barely answer her as I remembered that day.  When I think about that time I usually remember the tears and the anxiety... But I praise the Lord that my little girl remembers her mommy and daddy holding onto eachother.   I pray that all of my children remember the good things and amazing provision that the Lord has given us over this past year and a half and not the mommy who was scared or the daddy who was angry at the trial we had been given....We are so humbled and grateful by all of the encouragement, spiritually and physically, that we have received during this time.  The hand of God has touched us through His people in a mighty way and we are forever changed. We are holding on tighter to the Mighty One who is the creator of all things and when our grip begins to weaken we know that He is the one who will never let go.

James 1:2-12

Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have its perfect result, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.
But if any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all generously and without reproach, and it will be given to him.
But he must ask in faith without any doubting, for the one who doubts is like the surf of the sea, driven and tossed by the wind. For that man ought not to expect that he will receive anything from the Lord,
being a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways. But the brother of humble circumstances is to glory in his high position; and the rich man is to glory in his humiliation, because like flowering grass he will pass away.
For the sun rises with a scorching wind and withers the grass; and its flower falls off and the beauty of its appearance is destroyed; so too the rich man in the midst of his pursuits will fade away.
Blessed is a man who perseveres under trial; for once he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him.

In His grip,

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

The longest post ever...

So much for keeping my blog updated...I guess you can call me a once a quarter blogger! Anyways, we've had a very busy few months. We've moved again since the last time I posted and we are finally getting back into a routine after having my family here for a visit.
My in-laws were here for a month over Christmas and I didn't post any pictures of their visit so here are a few:

The kids loved having their grandparents here for a whole month. It was such a blessing to have them be a part of our everyday lives again.

On Christmas day after we opened our gifts we went to the movies with the Green family. Afterwards we had them over for a prime rib dinner. It was yummy!

The boys hiked Daisy Mountain.

We went to Sedona to see a production of Christ's birth. They turn a whole area into an old Bethlehem marketplace and all of the actors are in character. It is really cool. Here are the kids listening to a story about David and Goliath.

All Michaela wanted for Christmas was twin Ariel' we had to buy two of the same toy! We thought that was hilarious. She was so happy!

I took my mother in law to an English tea room.

We had a wonderful visit with them and it was sad to see them leave...The kids just adore them so much!

We had a couple of quiet months after my in-laws left but then in March we made a big move! We had only been in our new rental house for 7 months when our dear friends asked us if we wanted to live in their house while it was for sale. They were moving to Tennessee and their house here in Anthem would be empty. We prayed about it and felt like it was a good opportunity for us so we made the move. We love this house and it is such a blessing to have a pool!!! Here are a couple pictures.

About 3 days after we moved into the new house my parents came in for a visit. I also got the surprise of my life!
My sister and her family came in with them!!! I hadn't seen them in over a year and I had never met my niece Natalia! I think I scared her with my screaming. I'm surprised the neighbors didn't call the cops with all the commotion that was going on at my front door!

We got to spend Easter together and my mom bought all of the kids matching outfits.

My sister's family.

My parents and the kids.

It was so fun having my sister here. It was a little crazy having 5 little ones in the house and we all ended up with the stomach flu for a few days.....but I loved every minute of it! Well, except for the part when we were all throwing up in the middle of the night....that was not fun!

My brother in law, Steve, is a major pizza lover. He heard that Pizzeria Bianco in Phoenix was supposedly the best pizza place in the nation so we just had to go there.

They don't take reservations so we just put our names on the list when we got there. They said it would be a 4 and a half hour wait....yes your heard that we waited! We would be seated at 10:45pm!! We were all hungry so we actually went and ate at another restaurant and came back and ate again! I was so tired by the time we got the pizza that it didn't even taste good to me, or maybe it was because I had already eaten dinner. I'm glad we went because now I can tell people who come to visit that it was not worth it.

This is Julio dancing with Marina and Emilio at Harold's in Cave Creek. That was a fun night! Emilio and Natalia were dancing up a storm with the live band.

This is in Frontier Town before we went to Harold's.

We went the the children's museum. The kids had a blast! Poor Marina didn't come because she was still having tummy troubles from the flu.

Of course, I had to take them to the tea room.

Julio was not happy about going to such a girlie place until I let him eat the sugar cubes. All of the kids thought that was the best part!

Me and my sweet neice.....She is adorable and she loves me!! My sister told me that she doesn't like to go to anyone besides her but she would come right to me. I think she would get confused sometimes between me and my sister. I guess we have a lot of the same mannerisms and we look alike. I love this baby.....I miss her and her rolly legs....

My cousin, Linda, was visiting also so we spent a day with her and her kids in Scottsdale. We got a lot of stares walking into the restaurant and into stores with all of these kids. It was so funny!

Some people think It's weird that I love having family visit us so often and for so long but I really love having houseguests!!! Don't get me wrong, I do like having some down time and just spending some quiet days at home but I also love having my house full of the people that I love. I really think that sometimes in our American culture we get so caught up with having nice things and a big house and just living in our own little bubble away from our extended family that we don't get the blessings of learning and living with other people. That is the one major thing that I do not like about living so far from our parents. I really want my kids to experience our Italian culture and to learn from their grandparents and it hurts me to not be able to give them that. I think the whole communal living thing would be awesome. I would love it if we could all have our own house but live on the same piece of land and just share all of the responsibilities of living together. Julio and I have always talked about doing that with our families. We actually bought land in Michigan with my parents and before we moved here our plan was to build houses right next to eachother. That didn't end up working out but I can keep hoping right?...