Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Every creature of God is good

The other day, Matthew and I were at the fabric store. If you ever need to find me, you may want to try a fabric store. All of a sudden, this woman came out of nowhere and said, "what happened to his ear?" I could feel my face getting red. I was angry. Why was she asking this? Was it really important to her to understand why he doesn't have an ear? Does she ask questions of every handicapped person that she sees? She then said that she is a nurse. I have no idea what being a nurse has to do with being nosey of a child's handicap. What if I asked her what happened to her waistline, and I needed to know because I used to be a runner...

I have had this question by little kids, and it makes sense, because they are taught that people have 2 eyes, 2 ears, a mouth and a nose. When I simply explain that God made him this way, they find that acceptable and move on.

We have been to the Children's Hospital in Little Rock a lot in the past 18 months. Every time I go there I am humbled. Some children are dealing with some very serious stuff. None of us should take for granted what we have. When we are at the Children's Hospital, people don't stare. They don't act strange when Matthew gets excited and his head bobbles. They smile. They have a look of understanding in their eyes and they smile.

Something to think about the next time you see a handicapped person. They are just like you and me. Everyone of us has issues, some are just more visibly obvious than others. We are all children of God and special in His eyes. No person chooses to be handicapped, and no parent prays to God that they will have a child with special needs, continuous doctor appointments, expensive therapies, and physical and social challenges.

Every creature of God is good. 1 Timothy 4:4

I know some of you are curious about Matthew's progress. All you have to say is, "do you mind if I ask you about Matthew?" And I would be happy to tell you about all of the great things he is doing.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Christmas Stockings

The countdown is on! Only 55 more days until Christmas, my most favorite holiday. I usually start decorating the day after Halloween, so we have time to really enjoy it. I am so excited about my personalized Christmas Stockings. They come in two styles: a traditional shape, and a high heeled boot. I can make them in whatever colors you want, but the most common color combinations are shown below. Most have a velvet and suede fabric combination with beautiful beaded trim. And they are so special- because they are presonalized, with your name. No one else will have a stocking quite like yours!

I think the boot turned out amazing! Of course it can also be done in many other color combinations. I am also working on a leopard print boot.

If you are in the Northwest Arkansas area, please stop by Signed, Sealed, and Delivered next Sunday, Nov.7th for their Christmas open house. I will be there, taking orders for personalized Christmas Stockings and a few other great items. See you there!

(If you aren't in the area, and want your own stocking, just contact me directly.)

Thursday, October 14, 2010

One of a Kind

When Matthew was born, one of the many tests that he had, was a chromosome test. He was about 2 weeks old when we received the phone call saying that Matthew has an extra chromosome, and we would meet with the geneticist in about 3 months. They didn't give us a lot of details, except that the extra chromosome has a piece of 7 and 8 on it. The most well known extra chromosome is down syndrome, or trisomy 21, meaning that the extra chromosome has attached to pair 21. As a parent, I wanted to know what Matthew might be dealing with so I googled "trisomy 7" and found out that there are no live cases of trisomy 7, all would miscarry. Not always a good idea to search the internet for answers.

We finally met with the geneticist. He asked what questions we had. We wanted to know what Matthew's syndrome was called, what other kids like him dealt with, and what his mental capacity would be. The doctor explained that the extra chromosome had a piece of 7, 8, and 22 that had fromed 1 chromosome, but it was not attached to a pair, just hanging out by itself. Then he explained that there is a data bank holding the information for all chromosome disorders in the entire world. There is not a single match to Matthew. In the entire world! So the doctor could not answer any of our questions, but we actually found that to be good news. We can't compare him to anyone else, so he has no limitations.

Before Matthew was born, I heard someone say that "all children belong to God. We just get to take care of them." Matthew may not be like anyone else, but he is a child of God. Even though we don't really know what lies ahead, I am honored that God gave him to us.

Sometimes it doesn't make sense. Why wouldn't God make all children perfect and healthy. Why would a child ever have to suffer? And why would a baby's life on earth end too soon, while her family and hundreds of people were praying for her? My cousin's sweet 7 week old baby girl went to heaven last Friday, due to complications with heart surgery. At her funeral this morning, the pastor read this verse:

Psalm 139: 13-16. For You formed my inward parts; You covered me in my mother's womb. I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made, marvelous are your works, and that my soul knows very well. My frame was not hidden from You, when I was made in secret, and skillfully wrought in the lowest parts of the earth. Your eyes saw my substance, being yet unformed. And in Your book they all were written, the days fashioned for me, when as yet there were none of them.

God knows what Matthew is going through- He made Matthew. And God knew all about sweet Hadley. We may never comprehend God's plan in times like this, but we must trust that He has a plan. In Hadley's short 7 weeks on this earth she has had an impact on more people than most of us do in our entire lives.

Hadley's life is shared at hdstones.blogspot.com. Please pray for her parents and family to find strength and comfort.

Saturday, September 25, 2010


Matthew was born 6/22/09. It was a scheduled C section. By the time this day came, I was fairly confident that God had worked a miracle and Matthew would be perfect in every way. Wouldn't that be the perfect story of the power of prayer. What a great testimony I could share with everyone. In a C section, you can not see anything that is going on, but you can hear everything. I can still remember the most beautiful sound in the world when Reece was born by C Section- I couldn't see that he was born, but I heard him cry! Amazing! It is hard for words to describe. As Matthew's C Section began I was ready, waiting for that cry. waiting. And then I knew he was out.

Silence... I strained to hear anything, just silence...

Then the silence was broken by the doctor "where is the pediatrician! this baby has issues!" I saw the nurses take him over to the warm table to clean him up, and I heard a tiny little moan. That was it. Just a moan. As the doctor fixed me up, I asked JD if Matthew looked ok. He said yes. As my doctor was finishing me, he said rather matter of factly that the baby was missing an ear and that is not something that you would ever see on a sonogram. Isn't it crazy that a sonogram can pick up the slightest piece of a brain that does not exist, but can not see the absense of an ear.

When the pediatrician saw Matthew in the nursery, he was taken to the NICU, where he would spend the next 7 days. They ran numerous tests on him in his first 2 days, he had wires everywhere; oxygen, IV fluid, heart rate monitors. At one point they tested him for seizures and placed wires underneath the skin around his head, for 24 hours. They checked all of his internal organs, eye sight, hearing. It breaks any mother's heart to see her baby connected to that many wires. He had an MRI done on his brain. They even took blood to check for any chromosonal abnormalities.

After a few days, my hosptial stay was up, I could go home. But how can a mom go home and leave her baby? I couldn't make logical sense of it. He had to stay. He was not eating well, not gaining weight. I later realized that it was his difficulty to swallow which caused feeding to be such a struggle. Feeding never did get easier, but eventually he did gain enough weight to be sent home. My mom and I thought that once the IV fluid was removed, he would experience hunger and cry. He didn't. In fact he didn't really cry until he was a month old. Silence is an interesting thing. Sometimes God uses silence to get our attention. Once everything is completely quiet we finally listen to Him.

I like this verse from Ecclesiastes 3:1,7- To everything there is a season, a time for every purpose under heaven...A time to tear, And a time to SEW, A time to keep SILENCE, And a time to speak.

God definately had my attention. He has the power to do anything. Nothing is impossible, so why didn't he heal Matthew? Maybe my testimony isn't quite complete yet. Maybe God wants more from me. I don't know God's plan for Matthew, but I do still believe in miraculous healing. God didn't heal Matthew (at least not yet!)

Sunday, September 19, 2010

personalized treat bags

Halloween is going to be here soon. Although Halloween is not my favorite holiday (Christmas is!), who doesn't love an excuse to eat candy and dress up!! I am really excited about my newest creation. I have monogrammed little tote bags with "trick or treat" on one side and the child's name can be on the other side. The bags are 8" wide by 7" tall. They may be a little small for the serious candy collectors, but the perfect size for a little personalized gift bag.

You can find them at Signed, Sealed, and Delivered in Rogers, AR. They have just about anything you would ever need to decorate your home for the holiday or any day. My personalized loveys are also available at Signed, Sealed, and Delivered. Check it out!

Friday, September 10, 2010

the day my world stopped

The day was February 23, 2009. It is a day I will never forget. It was a Monday, but I was not at work- I had actually just lost my job and found myself unemployed and not sure what to do with my first day at home. Jonathan and Reece were at daycare, and I was 5 months pregnant with our third boy.

Then. The phone rang. It was my doctor. I heard him saying that there was a problem with the sonogram. The baby was missing a piece of his brain. It's called Agenesis of the Corpus Callosum. He didn't know what it was, and told me I could google it. I learned that it is a piece connecting both hemispheres of the brain and transfers information. It only forms between 5 and 16 wks gestation. Symptoms could include low muscle tone, difficulty swallowing, low perception of pain, seizures, facial abnormalities, vision and hearing impairments, mental retardation.

What! Why! What do I do. My husband was headed out of town for work for 2 days. He stopped by on his way, gave me a big hug, and told me that there was nothing we did to cause this. It might be easy to say that, but very hard to believe that. I spent the next 4 months trying to figure out what I did, what I ate or drank, or what I was exposed to. As that day came to an end- a stranger knocked on our door to tell me that our cat had been run over.

The next week we went to Little Rock for a specialized sonogram. They were concerned about the large size of his head, and extra space in his brain that could be hydrocephalus. The next sonogram would be in 10 weeks, where they would decide if we needed to deliver close to the Children's Hospital or if it could be done closer to home.

I am so glad that I had maternity photos taken. Most mothers look back at their maternity photos and remember how happy and joyous the whole experience was. When I look at those photos I remember being on my knees, praying, asking God for a miracle. God had my attention, and I could not have made it through this without trusting Him.

Finally it was time for the second sonogram. The corpus callosum that I had prayed to miraculously appear was still absent. But the doctor was not concerned about the extra space and determined that we would not need to deliver in Little Rock. And that was still great news to us. At that moment we decided to call him Matthew- "a gift from God".

The future was still so unknown, but I found comfort in this verse:

Psalm 139:7-10. Where can I go from Your Spirit? Or where can I flee from Your presence? If I ascend into heaven, You are there. If I make my bed in hell, behold, You are there. If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, even there Your hand shall lead me, and Your right hand shall hold me.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

sewing a seed- what is that?

What is sewing a seed? It has several meanings to me. I love, love, love to sew and create things. For years I have been doing anything from hemming pants, to designing and hand sewing wedding gowns. Last March, I finally took a leap and created my own sewing business "Sewing A Seed", which specializes in custom sewing and monogramming. Here are a couple photos of my baby loveys. They are made from soft minky fabric and ribbon strips. Of course they can be personalized for any baby. Babies really love the soft fabric and the textures of the ribbons. I can make just about any color combination that you want.

But Sewing A Seed means more to me than just literally sewing. As a mother of 3 boys, I am responsible for raising them to the best of my ability, with God's guidance. They are like little seeds and everyday I have to stop and praise God as I see them growing up before my eyes.

I have never blogged before, but it is time to start. I have too much to say and too much to be thankful for. I will be sharing experiences from my sewing business and being a mommy. Please check back. I will be posting again soon.

2 Corinthians 9:6. But this I say, he which soweth sparingly shall also reap sparingly, but he which soweth bountifully shall reap bountifully.