Wednesday, December 31, 2008

I love this time of year!

I love Christmas time and all the craziness that surrounds it.  I love that I never have time to post right now even though I have a million things to post about!  

We just got back from Missouri where we visited my family in Poplar Bluff.  I have so many great pics but they are still on my camera.  I just finished unpacking the suitcases, need to finish up the laundry, and get ready for the next round of family who comes in today.  My dad, Mason (my brother), his girlfriend, and my stepmom Barb are coming to visit.  They'll be here for a few days.  

To all my blog readers...thank you for checking up on us. I will get some updates going soon!  Until then...a recent pic of our adorable Annerson to sustain you!  She's 4 months today!  Ahhhhh!!!!!!!!!!


 Daddy and his girl

Thursday, December 18, 2008

the crib is getting some use!!!


It went really really well.  I thought I'd toss and turn all night, but I slept well & didn't wake up until we heard her cry at 6:30.  I think she'll do better because she won't hear us moving around or hear Lex talking in his sleep!  Her moving across the hall into her bedroom makes perfect sense at this point, but it's so bitter sweet.  She's no longer right there at the foot of the bed!  I can't check on her every time she whimpers or stirs. She's been in my tummy or right next to me for a year now.  This is a big step for us as parents. We probably would have done it sooner but the doorknob was really hard to turn so it made a loud pop when we opened her door.  We decided to just take the knob off for now. I'll post pics later of what it looks like now.  It's quite hilarious actually. 

YAY BIG GIRL ANNERSON!  I'M SO PROUD OF YOU FOR SLEEPING ALL BY YOURSELF LAST NIGHT!  IT'S SO EXCITING!!!!

You know what else is very exciting? Today is a super fun day for the Dooleys. Daddy's home!  I have a haircut today!  We are doing a little bit of Christmas shopping,  taking dinner to friends with a new baby, & then tonight is the 1st ANNUAL GRAY'S CHRISTMAS PARTY!  So exciting. The Grays are dear friends who we love to do life with.  They have 2 children.  Gavin is 1.5 years old and Madison is almost 9 weeks old.  She and Annerson are best friends & Gavin is Annerson's promised husband. 
 
Pope Gavin the First


Me & my BFF just chillin in our sweet rides

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Across the Hall

Annerson is sleeping in her crib tonight for the first time.  

It feels so weird to know she'll be across the hall and not at the foot of the bed. 

We'll see how this goes.  It's kinda so sad.


Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Loquacious Leah...thanks Beth!



I have been very encouraged and uplifted since my last post.  Thank you everyone who left sweet comments.  It is such a blessing to know so many people care and are praying for us.  

I am getting over a stomach bug or the flu...whichever one it is, it is "a stinky" (nacho quote).  I woke up Monday morning feeling oh so bad.  I spent all day yesterday laying on the couch while lovely angels took care of Anner.  My mother in law spent the 1st half of the day taking care of her, then my niece Mikah, then my good friend Tara.  I am so thankful that I have family and friends to call upon when I need them.  Anyway, I am feeling better.  Apparently it is going around.  The Dallas and Williams family also got struck by it.  

Lots of birthdays were celebrated last week- Lindsey McDaniel, Amber Hickman, & Zach & Calyn Dallas.  Happy Birthday dear friends!  

"Who is this guy that showed up at our amazing party and keeps getting in our pictures?"

Many of you know Lindsey.  She is a journeyman in Prague, Czech Republic.  She has a year left of her 2 year commitment.  Lindsey Lu is coming to Lubbock on the 22nd of December for a quick visit!!!  She's flying in that night and leaving the 23rd.  I am soooooo excited to see Linds  & Annerson can't wait to meet her.

Over Thanksgiving break, Amber came home.  She spent a little bit of her time with us & she was able to take some beautiful pics of Annerson. Thanks Aunt Ambi!!




These are just a few of the many she took.  You can see the rest on our website gallery.  


Annerson is doing well.  She isn't showing any symptoms that she is getting what I have.  Thank you Lord for protecting her!  She is 3 months old now.  I forgot to do a 3 month post last week. Now that she is 3 months, I can no longer refer to her age in weeks now.  That is super sad!  But for the record...she's 14 weeks :)


Her newest cuteness is constantly sucking on her fingers & holding toys. She is really close to finding her feet.  She keeps pulling them up and touching them together.  She has also been able to wear shoes lately.  She's grown into a couple of pairs.  She's still wearing 0-3 month clothes. She weighed 12 pounds on the 1st of December.  Oh, and she has a bald spot on the left side of her head.  She likes to rub her head back and forth when she's laying down or trying to go to sleep.  She's pretty much sleeping through the night again.  Every once in a while she'll wake up before 5, but several nights last week she's slept till 7am.   She gets prettier and cuter everyday.  




My sister got out of her program and is now living in a half-way house in Dallas.  

My mom is leaving her facility THIS THURSDAY!  I am so proud of her for making it this long...6 months.  But I am nervous about her getting out.  She is going to live with my Papa in Poplar Bluff, Missouri.  That is the town I grew up in.  Lex & I are gong to see her and the family for Christmas.  Please lift her up when you think of us.  She needs strength to fight the demons that have a grip on her. 

Lex & I need to hurry up and take our family pic so we can do a Christmas card.  

Lex's final is today at 1:30.  Then he is DONE for a long time!!!!!  Next semester he is going to focus on retaking the MCAT so he won't be taking any classes.  He actually only has 1 more prereq that he needs to take.  He'll take it next fall.

The tree is up.  The stockings are hung.  It's supposed to snow today in Lubbock. Ahhhh....I love Christmas time.   

Ok, that was the most random post ever.  Got to love it.








Thursday, December 4, 2008

You probably didn't know

When people ask me "How are you doing?" , I usually respond with "Good."  

Don't we all?  

Well, this is what is behind the "good". 

I am lonely.  I went from 40 hours of non stop interaction at Banana, to hanging out with someone usually every other day or so, but mostly just being with Annerson alone at  the house.  I hate it when Lex has to leave the house to go to work, school or to go study.  

Along the same lines, I am desperate for fellowship and community.  I miss being involved in Challenge.  For 4 years my world was filled with 2 Bible study meetings a week.  I always had a group of college students in my home at least once a week.  It's amazing how much life can fill your home when a Bible study takes place there.  Lex & I haven't had that in 2 years now.  He goes to a Bible study Friday mornings but I am not in one.  I feel like God is moving me to start a prayer group for all my "new mommy" friends.  There are a lot of women in Lubbock who have had babies recently and I think it'd be a good support group for us.

My mother is in a 6 month drug/alcohol treatment program in Missouri.  She entered the facility in June and she is set to get out in the next couple of weeks.  She recently failed a drug test after leaving the facility on a day pass.  We are waiting for the lab results.  This changes everything because we had hope that she was finally cleaning up and turning over a new leaf.  Now she might be right back where she started before she began treatment.  This is not the first attempt at rehab for my mom.  It is the longest she's been in a program though. 

I have a sister who is also getting treated for drug/alcohol addictions.  She is in a program in Dallas.  Many of you know Alexis.  She's the sweetest girl in the world, but she's messed around with the horrible stuff since high school.  She's now 20 years old and paying the price for it.  

I've realize that being a mom isn't always fun and easy.  I guess it's like being married. It takes a lot of work but the benefits and joys are endless.  

I worry about my milk supply everyday.  I had a breast reduction when I was 17.  The odds were against me being able to BF my children.  That was a choice I made then & I was willing to live with that choice.  But over the years I have prayed my heart out that God would work a miracle and that I could BF my children one day.  We had a rough time getting started, but Annerson & I are making it.  I always worry that I'll stop making enough or that I won't keep up with her growth.  I thank God every day, literally, and pray that if I had to start giving Annerson only formula that the time I was able to give her milk would be sufficient for her body & sufficient to give me peace about the whole thing.  I've never been "blog tagged" before, but Melissa Williams tagged me to post about a miracle the other day.  This is definitely my miracle.  

I miss Banana.  My leave of absence ends in January and I will officially no longer be an employee of Gap Inc.  It's been 7.5 years since I started working for Gap.  I love the company, the clothes, the customers & the store.  I love love love Banana.  It truly was my 2nd home.  I feel like I'm at home still when I walk in that store. I poured my heart out for my customers, boss & employees.  I miss getting to serve them, guide them, and getting to lead them.  I know I am supposed to be at home.  I've known that since I was little.  But I don't have a peace right now.  I'm not sure why.  I don't know if it's just because I'm adjusting or what.  I just miss it.  I miss the people I worked with a lot too.  I made some friendships there that I'll have for the rest of my life.  January 5th is the last day of my leave.  I am praying that I'll have complete peace about leaving by then.

I am ready to move.  Did you ever play M*A*S*H?  You know...mansion, apartment, shack, house....well I must have landed on shack one too many times.  Lex & I live in Lex's college house which could qualify as a shack to some.  His parents own some land in Wolfforth and the house sits on the land. From the outside it seriously looks like a shack.  The inside isn't as bad.  We definitely fixed it up since its former bachelor pad days.  We moved in 6 months after we got married because we could live here for free.  God called us...well me specifically....to live here.  He brought me here to teach me priorities, humility & obedience.  It's been a blessing really.  We've had major financial freedom that has allowed us to pay off our cars, school loan, any other money we owed people, and give freely to God's work.  It's been so amazing not having to worry about money as a newly wed couple.  Of course now that we only have Lex's income you would think  that we would appreciate it even more, but that's not the case.  The season has come to an end.  It's time to move on.  We need to distance ourselves from his parents.  We need to have more space.  We need a bathroom that doesn't have a jacked up sewer system that always smells....I know, gross.  Did I mention that we also now live right next door to cows?  The icing on the cake was a couple of weeks ago when Lex was running around the field at 2:30am herding the 30 cows back into their pin.  They were right by our windows!  He had to call the police because the man who lives next door (the drunk cow man) is quite crazy.  He told Lex's dad that he was going to shoot whoever threw his gloves in the cow trough.  Yeah.  Didn't think it was such a good idea to knock on the door at 2 in the morning and tell him his cows were out.  

The other day Lex said he was ready to move.  I thought I was dreaming.  But he's come to that place that I came to a long time ago.  Finally.  He's ready.  I'm ready.  It's time.

And last  but not least, I miss God.  I am in a dry season.  Probably from all the junk going on around me & all the change. It's frustrating to cry out to God and hear very little in return.  It's hard to find time to cry out to God period.  Annerson demands a lot of my energy and brain power.  It's getting easier, but it's still not natural to do the things required to be a good mommy.  So I find myself drained so often.  Not having much left over to put into quiet times, prayer times, etc.  When I do, I feel so tired & rushed. 

So there it is.  That's the "real me, ugly junk" behind the "good".  The stuff you probably didnt' know.  It's not all pretty like I'd like it to be.  But it's life.  It's where God is moving, breaking, digging around, shaping and molding me to be more like Him. Praise Him for that.  I know Lex & I are right where we are supposed to be.  We are waiting on a lot of things.  Praying for a lot of things.  Mostly though, I want to be content right where God has me.  If I die tomorrow I want to know that I am satisfied in the Lord. I want to know that each day counted for His glory, my family & the Kingdom of God.  

Please don't read this and think that I am ungrateful.  Blessings fall all around me.  In fact, everything I described above is a blessing in a way.  I walk in complete freedom knowing that God's grace is sufficient &  His provisions are bountiful.  But there are seasons in our lives that are harder than others and I am in the middle of one.  My heart is searching for understanding and purpose.  I am steadfast and faithful and preaching the power of the cross to myself as a reminder of His goodness.

"Why are you downcast , O my soul?
Why so disturbed within me?
Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise Him, 
my Savior and my God."  Ps. 42:5







Monday, December 1, 2008

3 post in 1 night

That's a record for me.  See below.

Thanksgiving Week


Lex and I went non-stop this past week.  Here are a few pics to prove it.


Lex had 3 straight days off from work.  He had some precious daddy daughter time.

 
Amber stayed with us Tuesday night.  We went to her graduation party in Hale Center Wednesday night. 



We ate Thanksgiving lunch with Lex's family at Ron & Martha's.  
Uh Lex, what are you doing?


Sweet Annerson


When Annerson is tired she moves her head back and forth really fast and likes to suck on your shirt.


Thursday night Gramey Barb drove in from Austin to spend some time with us.  She left Saturday morning.  Barb is Alexis & Mason's mom.  Is was so good to see her!!


We froze our daughter at the Tech v. Baylor game on Saturday.  Oh come on!  It was cold, but we had tickets and really wanted Anner to go to her first Tech game.  We only stayed for like 1.5 hours.  Yeah she cried the whole time...but it was probably because we were losing the whole game...ok, maybe because it was really really cold and really really loud.  Same dif. 

The three of us...Annerson is staying toasty under the blanket.


Went to a Dallas family birthday Saturday night.  ALWAYS so much fun, creative & full of sweet memories.


Happy 1st Birthday Abby!  
You are the happiest baby in the world!


Again...uh, Lex what are you doing?

Did I mention that Lex's best friend Graham stayed at our house Friday through Wednesday?  I don't know how I ended up with no pics of him.  Very sad.  We miss Graham already.

Things are settling back down now.  We got to take communion at church yesterday.  Lex went back to work today.  I had lunch with my friend Annalisa.  And now I am catching up on blogging.  My only goal this week is to get the house decorated and some pictures organized. 

P.S.  Quite possibly the most exciting thing I did this Thanksgiving week was LISTENED TO CHRISTMAS MUSIC!  I always start celebrating Christmas on Thanksgiving Day.  I feel like Kevin on Home Alone when he realizes his family is gone and runs through the house screaming with excitement. 
You know the scene, "I made my family disappear! AHHHHHHHHH!!!!"  
I'm pretty sure I did that on Thursday when I busted out the Christmas music, Noel Bean lotion & watched Elf.  Gotta love those quarky traditions.


Anniversary Part II

Continuing our anniversary celebration....Lex and I went to see the movie Fireproof on Thursday night.  The movie is amazing.  Go see it.  Praise God that I sat in a movie theater and watched the gospel be preached and proclaimed on the big screen.  No fluff.  No "are they alluding to Jesus?".  No question that Christ was being proclaimed as the only way to be right with God.  It was amazing.  Not to mention the incredible story line of the Biblical depiction of marriage and what God intended it to be.   The whole movie just rocked.  


Annerson stayed at Mimi & Potsy's house while we went to the movie.  My mother-in-law is hilarious.  She got dressed for the event.

So the "What happens at Mimi's house stays at Mimi's house" shirt is supposed to make me feel more comfortable about leaving Anner's with you and calm my extreme anxiety!?  Just kidding Mimi.  You did great!

Then on Friday afternoon we had a couple's massage at The Woodhouse.  Ah.  It was nice.  Annerson went to Mimi & Potsy's again. 

Then for the grand finale...we stayed the night at the Embassy Suites in the same room we stayed in on our wedding night.  Annerson DID NOT stay at Mimi & Potsy's.  She came with us.  No way were we going to leave her overnight.  3 hours maybe, but not overnight.  


Lex on our wedding night.  ROOM #111


3 years later
same room
sweet new daughter



3 years earlier...Gary Hays drove us away from FBC in a sweet beamer, drove us to the hotel, and brought our luggage to our room.  He was a good chauffeur.  

We couldn't stop laughing when we saw Gary's wife Melissa Friday night when we got to the hotel.  Their daughter Hannah was having a birthday party there.  I thought it was crazy that last time we were there Gary was with us and now Melissa was with us! 
What do you know....Gary showed up Saturday morning to eat breakfast. 
He forgot to bring the beamer this time. And he didn't offer to cary our luggage. Priceless.

P.S.  We were planning on swimming at the hotel.  Beth even loaned us a swimsuit for Annerson to use and we were so excited about Annerson getting to swim for the first time.  However, due to the fact that there were at least 20 little girls in the pool at any given time (there were 3 birthday parties going on) we opted to not to.  Thanks anyway Beth!

Our anniversary was celebrated very differently this year.  The past two years we have taken a trip to Dallas, stayed at the Omni Mandalay Hotel in Las Colinas, frequented the spa at the hotel, and shopped at the Galleria.  This year we couldn't do all that because we have now have Annerson.  Even though our celebration was a little less "glamorous" and we had to worry about leaving her with different people, it was still amazing.  I'm so glad that we will never get to celebrate our anniversary as a married couple with no children again!!!!  Wait. Did that make sense?



Catching up

I haven't been on the computer much in the last week.  It's been busy around here.  I'm catching up on your life right now.  Hopefully I will post soon.


Monday, November 24, 2008

Lex's patient Reagan

Lex wanted me to post about a very special little patient that needs to be lifted up in prayer.  Her name is Reagan and she's 6 years old.  Saturday night she went to bed in fine health.  Sunday morning she woke up with a tumor protruding from her kidney the size of 3 softballs.  Lex took care of her Sunday afternoon while they prepared to have emergency surgery.  She had her left kidney removed and is about to start chemotherapy.  

Lex wants us to pray for her and her parents.  They are still at Covenant.  If you want to leave encouraging comments and prayers Lex will print them and take them to the family.  This has all happened so quickly.  They are Christians and need to know that there are believers out there praying for their little Reagan.

Thanks and God bless.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

3 Year Anniversary

Lex and I celebrated our 3 year anniversary yesterday.  We had our first date night since Annerson was born.  It was so weird being away from her, but we had a super fun dinner date at Abuelo's!  

Thanks Jordan and Jessica for our awesome gift card that paid for our meal!

Thanks BETH for being super amazing and watching Annerson along with your 3 children.  I never once worried about Annerson.  She is in such good hands when she's with you.  Thank you for serving us and allowing us to have a date!



I was secretly wanting flowers and I guess Lex found out because he brought me a beautiful bouquet of stargazer lilies and pink roses. They are the flowers we used in our wedding ceremony.  Thanks amazing husband!  I love every minute of life with you.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Wake up sleepy!

I always miss Annerson when she's asleep.  Sounds ridiculous for a mom to say who gets an average of 5 consecutive hours of sleep a night.  Still, when it's time to wake my baby girl up I get excited and I can't wait to pick her up and squeeze her tiny little body.  

Early this morning I was enjoying a sweet moment with Annerson.  I was excited that she had woke up after 7 hours and wanted to eat.  As I sat there feeding her I heard God speak.  He reminded  me that my excitement for her to wake up so I can spend time with her is a faint shadow of how he feels toward me when I wake up. 

"Really?  You desire to spend time with me like I desire to spend time with Anners? You can't wait for me to wake up and give you attention?  A smile?  A hug? "

"Yes. I can't wait."

So I sat there and prayed for 45 minutes.  Spending sweet time with God. He was excited that I had woke up.   

Saturday, November 1, 2008

GO RED RAIDERS!!!!!  UNBELIEVABLE!!!!!!!!

39-33 #7 TEXAS TECH beats #1 texas

That's my Lubbock Red Raiders baby!  

Get your GUNS UP people
Thanks for the video Austin

Friday, October 31, 2008

My brave dedicated Coco Annerson Pink Leopard




#1 She's Annerson Grace
I think we get asked about once a day how we came up with Annerson's 
name. The story is kinda ridiculous actually. But here it is in case you don't already know.
Annerson's name is super special. A while back (like when Lex & I first got married) we were watching the movie Minority Report with Tom Cruise. Tom's character's name is John Anderton but we of course thought they were saying "Annerson" We just thought it was a clever deviation from the last name Anderson. We decided it'd also be a pretty first name for a girl. We said right then and there that we'd name our first girl Annerson. We never changed our minds & knew when we got pregnant that if it was a girl she would be our little Annerson. After we found out she was a girl I watched the movie again and realized that Annerson wasn't Tom's name after all! WHOOPS! But, we loved it and knew it was supposed to be her name.  
The best part about her name is that when we looked up "Annerson" to see if it was a real name we discovered it wasn't...but we also discovered that Anne means "grace" and Son means "mountain" At this point we had already decided that her middle name was going to be Grace because that is the lesson we learn over and over again from our sweet Lord. Knowing that "Annerson" basically meant grace mountain and that her middle name was Grace only reinforced our decision to name her Annerson. Her name literally is a mountain of grace and it couldn't be more perfect for her!

So thank you Tom Cruise 
for helping us name our daughter. And thank you Lord for using Tom 
Cruise to tell us what our daughter's name would be!


#2 Coco is her name and she's a pink leopard

Can we say Cuuuuuuuuteness!

Annerson is the cutest pink leopard I've ever seen. Well, she's the only pink leopard I've ever seen. I absolutely love her outfit. Thanks Mimi!! I joked with Lex this morning about pink leopard sounding like a scandalous stripper costume. So her pink leopard name is Coco. Of course, we are just kidding and would never want her to be a stripper!

My favorite part about her outfit are the paws! Raaaarrr!

#C She's brave

Anners had her 2 month checkup today at Dr. Stripling's office. She did so good. She cried through her 3 shots, but it was surprisingly easier than I thought it would be for me. I didn't watch, but held her hand and listened to her scream. Lex & I both teared up. Her crying turned to a "I'm worn out from all this!" whimper as soon as we picked her up.  

As soon as we got to the car she fell asleep and slept hard for the next 4 hours.

She weighs a little under 10 1/2 pounds (50th percentile), she's 22.75 in. long (60th percentile), & her head is now 38.5 cm round (45th percentile). Gotta love those percentiles so you can measure your kid up against everyone else!

#D She's Dedicated

Last Sunday we dedicated Annerson to the Lord. Basically what that means is that we commit to raising Annerson in a home where she will learn about God's love, His redemptive purposes and the Scriptures so that one day she will make the decision on her own to walk with Christ Jesus. I had been praying that she wouldn't cry during the dedication because we have to get up in front of the whole church during the service. Not only did she not cry, but she slept the entire time. It was awesome. The Dallas fam dedicated Abby and the Garzas dedicated Zach. Getting to share that moment with Beth & Dana was very special for me. Lex and I both cried, of course. We desire for Annerson to know God's grace & mercy. I can't wait for the day when she realizes what a beautiful Savior we have.


Right before she was dedicated. She was very excited!


She loves attention!


Annerson in her beautiful princess dress





Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Roll out the Red Carpet & Tilapia with Rice

This isn't a post about Annerson sleeping through the night for the 2nd time.  Although SHE TOTALLY DID last night!  She slept from 10:30 to 7am the next morning. AMAZING.  But this isn't about that like I said.  I'm talking about real carpet this time. 

Many of you know that Adam (my brother) and his best friend Ken Chamitoff have made a movie. He's spent the last year traveling to and from L.A. The movie is called THE RED CANVAS.

Adam goes back to L.A. next week for a 2 week long film festival.  Please pray for Steffany as he is away for that long.  She has 6 children and a friend Gadese who is staying with her.  She is the woman that Adam and Stef brought back with them from Africa when they went to pick up the twins.  Gadese is 39 weeks pregnant.


Adam, Jace, Stef, McKayley & Faith at the premier this summer in L.A.

Possibly the best looking family there is



Below is the new trailer they just released.  Adam & Ken are currently working with distributing companies to sell the movie.  I can't wait to see it!  I got to read the original script last Christmas but I haven't seen the final cut yet. 



This video is of the rapper Jackpot recording one of the songs he has in the movie.  IT"S HILARIOUS!  He keeps trying to cuss and my brother (the guy in the booth) keeps telling him he can't use that language.  Not to mention, it takes this dude like 10 years to order lunch.  You'll notice his song in the trailer. 




Sunday, October 26, 2008

ROLL OUT THE PINK CARPET

Ladies and gentlemen, it is now 7:40 am and guess who is still sleeping!  To catch up on the crazy last 24 hours read the 2 previous posts.  My alarm went off at 6 am to feed her and I couldn't believe that she had slept since I laid her down at 1 am.  Lex & I decided to let her keep sleeping.  I tried to go back to sleep but thought it wise to go ahead and get up and get everything ready for us to go to church.  Besides, I don't need to get used to too much sleep!  

So here I am, blogging while eating my cereal.  I'm completely ready for church & have her and Lex's clothes laid out and ready to go.

Funny story-last night Mimi (Lex's mom) came over to help me bathe Annerson at 8:30.  I was reading Baby Wise when she walked in.   
Page 114, "The stabilization phase is usually completed by the eighth week.  By this time, most babies are sleeping through the night or very close to achieving that skill."  HA!  I read this to Mimi, we both laughed, then I threw the book on the other end of the couch so I couldn't rip it to shreds or burn it.  But what do you know?  Annerson turned 8 weeks last night at 3:50 am.  Hmmm.......could this be the beginning of sleeping through the night?  If not, I'll still take it.  Now I'm going to go wake her & Lex up and we will all very restfully (is that a word?) leave for church in an hour! Amen.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Snoring

She finally caved in around 12:30am. That's 11.5 hrs straight !  I'm holding her though so we'll see what happens when I put her down in her bed. I think she's out pretty hard though cause she's snoring big time!  It's so cute. I'm trying hard not to laugh.

r u KIDDING ME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I'm so over it. Annerson has broken her no sleep strike record with a jaw dropping 10.5 hour stretch of no sleep...and still going.  This is beyond ridiculous and if you can't tell, my patience is fading.  If I lay her down she cries.  If I rock her to sleep (so I think, but apparently she's faking it) 5 mins. after I lay her down she cries.  She's fed, doesn't have a fever, doesn't need to burp, has a dry diaper & a sleep sheep.  Please sheep make her sleep!  I'm delirious.  Might I add that we are supposed to dedicate her in the morning at church.  She is so exhausted.  I don't know how she's keeping her poor little puffy red eyes open.  I just hope we can make it out the door tomorrow morning and that she can enjoy it.

This my friends is why I never have time to blog anymore. I'm so sorry I don't update more.  We're just having a really hard time in the Dooley house. 

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Vote as if we are not doing it

Here is an article by Pastor John Piper about voting.  Worth the read.


Voting is like marrying and crying and laughing and buying. We should do it, but only as if we were not doing it. That’s because “the present form of this world is passing away” and, in God’s eyes, “the time has grown very short.” Here’s the way Paul puts it:

The appointed time has grown very short. From now on, let those who have wives live as though they had none, and those who mourn as though they were not mourning, and those who rejoice as though they were not rejoicing, and those who buy as though they had no goods, and those who deal with the world as though they had no dealings with it. For the present form of this world is passing away. (1 Corinthians 7:29-31)

Let’s take these one at a time and compare them to voting.

1. “Let those who have wives live as though they had none.”

This doesn’t mean move out of the house, don’t have sex, and don’t call Honey. Earlier in this chapter Paul says, “The husband should give to his wife her conjugal rights” (1 Corinthians 7:3). He also says to love her the way Christ loved the church, leading and providing and protecting (Ephesians 5:25-30). It means this: Marriage is momentary. It’s over at death, and there is no marriage in the resurrection. Wives and husbands are second priorities, not first. Christ is first. Marriage is for making much of him.

It means: If she is exquisitely desirable, beware of desiring her more than Christ. And if she is deeply disappointing, beware of being hurt too much. This is temporary—only a brief lifetime. Then comes the never-disappointing life which is life indeed.

So it is with voting. We should do it. But only as if we were not doing it. Its outcomes do not give us the greatest joy when they go our way, and they do not demoralize us when they don’t. Political life is for making much of Christ whether the world falls apart or holds together.

2. “Let those who mourn [do so] as though they were not mourning.”

Christians mourn with real, deep, painful mourning, especially over losses—loss of those we love, loss of health, loss of a dream. These losses hurt. We cry when we are hurt. But we cry as though not crying. We mourn knowing we have not lost something so valuable we cannot rejoice in our mourning. Our losses do not incapacitate us. They do not blind us to the possibility of a fruitful future serving Christ. The Lord gives and takes away. But he remains blessed. And we remain hopeful in our mourning.

So it is with voting. There are losses. We mourn. But not as those who have no hope. We vote and we lose, or we vote and we win. In either case, we win or lose as if we were not winning or losing. Our expectations and frustrations are modest. The best this world can offer is short and small. The worst it can offer has been predicted in the book of Revelation. And no vote will hold it back. In the short run, Christians lose (Revelation 13:7). In the long run, we win (21:4).

3. “Let those who rejoice [do so] as though they were not rejoicing.”

Christians rejoice in health (James 5:13) and in sickness (James 1:2). There are a thousand good and perfect things that come down from God that call forth the feeling of happiness. Beautiful weather. Good friends who want to spend time with us. Delicious food and someone to share it with. A successful plan. A person helped by our efforts.

But none of these good and beautiful things can satisfy our soul. Even the best cannot replace what we were made for, namely, the full experience of the risen Christ (John 17:24). Even fellowship with him here is not the final and best gift. There is more of him to have after we die (Philippians 1:21-23)—and even more after the resurrection. The best experiences here are foretastes. The best sights of glory are through a mirror dimly. The joy that rises from these previews does not and should not rise to the level of the hope of glory. These pleasures will one day be as though they were not. So we rejoice remembering this joy is a foretaste, and will be replaced by a vastly better joy.

So it is with voting. There are joys. The very act of voting is a joyful statement that we are not under a tyrant. And there may be happy victories. But the best government we get is a foreshadowing. Peace and justice are approximated now. They will be perfect when Christ comes. So our joy is modest. Our triumphs are short-lived—and shot through with imperfection. So we vote as though not voting.

4. “Let those who buy [do so] as though they had no goods.”

Let Christians keep on buying while this age lasts. Christianity is not withdrawal from business. We are involved, but as though not involved. Business simply does not have the weight in our hearts that it has for many. All our getting and all our having in this world is getting and having things that are not ultimately important. Our car, our house, our books, our computers, our heirlooms—we possess them with a loose grip. If they are taken away, we say that in a sense we did not have them. We are not here to possess. We are here to lay up treasures in heaven.

This world matters. But it is not ultimate. It is the stage for living in such a way to show that this world is not our God, but that Christ is our God. It is the stage for using the world to show that Christ is more precious than the world.

So it is with voting. We do not withdraw. We are involved—but as if not involved. Politics does not have ultimate weight for us. It is one more stage for acting out the truth that Christ, and not politics, is supreme.

5. “Let those who deal with the world [do so] as though they had no dealings with it.”

Christians should deal with the world. This world is here to be used. Dealt with. There is no avoiding it. Not to deal with it is to deal with it that way. Not to weed your garden is to cultivate a weedy garden. Not to wear a coat in Minnesota is to freeze—to deal with the cold that way. Not to stop when the light is red is to spend your money on fines or hospital bills and deal with the world that way. We must deal with the world.

But as we deal with it, we don’t give it our fullest attention. We don’t ascribe to the world the greatest status. There are unseen things that are vastly more precious than the world. We use the world without offering it our whole soul. We may work with all our might when dealing with the world, but the full passions of our heart will be attached to something higher—Godward purposes. We use the world, but not as an end in itself. It is a means. We deal with the world in order to make much of Christ.

So it is with voting. We deal with the system. We deal with the news. We deal with the candidates. We deal with the issues. But we deal with it all as if not dealing with it. It does not have our fullest attention. It is not the great thing in our lives. Christ is. And Christ will be ruling over his people with perfect supremacy no matter who is elected and no matter what government stands or falls. So we vote as though not voting.

By all means vote. But remember: “The world is passing away along with its desires, but whoever does the will of God abides forever” (1 John 2:17).

Voting with you, as though not voting,

Pastor John

Friday, October 17, 2008

Insomnia

If anyone is up at this hour please pray that God would have a bit of mercy on us. Annerson has broken her alert period record...she's been awake since 5pm today with no naps.  It is now 1am.  We have tried everything. Food, rocking, singing, letting her cry, gas drops, white noise...what are we doing wrong??????

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Hard decision

Lex & I have been trying really hard to get Annerson on a predictable routine for about a week now.  During the day, I feed her every 3 hours  or sooner if she is hungry.  Then I keep her awake with an activity-tummy time, playmat, book, swing, or I just talk to her and play with her.  We were keeping her awake for an hour but apparently that is too long for her because she wasn't wanting to wake up and eat from her nap.  So now I keep her awake for 30 minutes with an activity.  Then I change her, swaddle her, and start the long process of trying to get her to go to sleep.   Her naps have been 45 minutes to an hour by the time we get her to fall asleep.  
We decided this was not working.  By the time Annerson falls asleep after rocking and singing and doing all things possible to try to get her to fall asleep, we only have like 45 minutes before we have to start it all over again. This doesn't leave much time to shower, clean, or get a much needed mommy nap.  My daily routine is pretty much stay in my pjs all day and somehow manage to at least brush my teeth somewhere in there and if I'm lucky, shower once a day. Anyways...We've heard a hundred times from different people & from BabyWise to place her in her crib when it's naptime and let her put herself to sleep. This sounded harsh & selfish.  I wouldn't even consider doing that...UNTIL NOW.

Annerson just cried herself to sleep for the 2nd time today!  Lex & I had a really rough night with her last night.  She's going through a growth spurt so she's doing a lot more eating than sleeping.  This morning I fed her at 9:30 and by 10:30 she was still wide awake.  I however, was not. I was seriously dragging after going to bed at 12am, waking up at 2:30 and laying down at 4:30, waking up at 6:30 and laying down at 8am and then waking up at 9:30.  Like I said, it's 10:30 and Lex has to work today.  That means I need to be on top of my game.  To do that I need sleep.  For me to sleep, she needs to sleep.  So Lex suggests we put her in her crib for her nap and see what she does.  We'd tried this a couple of other times randomly but buckled every time she started to cry.  It's hard to sit there while your child cries!

This time we were strong.  She only cried for 5 minutes & then she was crashed out until Lex woke us up at 12:30!  It was beautiful.  I got a little nap in and she got some rest that she needed.   With Lex gone, I prayed that I would be able to handle her crying when I put her down for her 2pm nap.  Sure enough, almost to the minute, she cried for 5 and then was asleep.  The funny thing about it is that if I try to get her to go to sleep by singing to her and rocking her, I think it just upsets her more because she'll cry for like an hour.  It's almost like she gets over-stimulated when we try to get her to go to sleep and she's probably crying because she wants us to leave her alone and let her sleep!  So as hard as it is, it's not selfish to put her down and let her cry because she gets to sleep faster, gets the rest she needs to grow & learn and I get a break and rest so that I can be a better mommy to her.   We'll see if this helps her sleep better tonight.  


Annerson putting herself to sleep!  She's such a big girl!

Monday, October 13, 2008

6 Amazing weeks

1 Day old

1 week

2 Weeks

3 weeks

4 weeks

5 Weeks

6 Weeks

Thursday, October 9, 2008

She's done it again


Annerson's newborn pictures are done!  THEY ARE SO WONDERFUL!  
Lezlie Andrew is such an amazing photographer.  She did my maternity pictures & then traveled to Lubbock to shoot Annerson's newborns. Lezlie is a strong believer who uses her photographing skills as a ministry.  Thank you Lez for blessing us with these beautiful pics of our little Anner!  We love you!

Check out this adorable little princess! 















If you want to see all her pictures here is the link to the client proofing site.  The password is Dooley.  If this doesn't work for some reason go to lezlieandrew.com and click on client photos.  On the client photo screen select "families & children" and you'll see Annerson's. Then enter the password.  We did some really adorable Tech shots that you have to see!

Let me know what you think!  Also let our incredible photographer Lezlie know what an awesome job she did!

Oh, and Lex wants me to let everyone know that you can buy prints from Lezlie and send them to us as gifts...or you can purchase a gift card for her print store for us.  He thinks that is a good trade off for us giving you our password to the pics.  He's crazy.