Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Baby Photos

Josh and I went in this morning for the 2nd and final sonogram of Baby R. According to the Doctor, everything looks great. The heartbeat, length and weight are normal. He/she weighs about 12 ounces now (but somehow his/her mommy has already managed to gain 12 pounds!!). We were able to see pictures of the spine and legs. We could see the baby moving around and at one point, one of his/her hands with all the perfectly formed fingers was very clear. The technician tried to point out the kidneys and liver, but to our untrained eyes, they pretty much looked like cloudy grey blobs.

Here are two pictures--both of the face. The first one is pretty clear. You can see the lens of the left eye and the two fists up by his/her face. The second picture is harder to make out but you can see the nose and open mouth if you look carefully.

For those of you who are dying to ask. . . No, we don't know the sex. So even if you pester us, we wouldn't be able to tell you =)

We're very excited and can't wait to meet this little one! Only 4 1/2 more months!

Friday, May 26, 2006

Life is so fragile

My mom just called me. She and my dad were driving to visit my grandparents when they witnessed a car explode in a field off the side of the freeway. By the time my dad could get down to the car, the field surrounding the car was also on fire. He could not get close enough to help the driver who was trapped in the car.


Pray that God brings comfort to the grieving family of the driver who perished. Pray that the driver was a follower of Christ and that many will be saved through this tragedy. And pray that God constantly remind each of us how precious life is. It is a fleeting vapor. We are as the lilies of the field which are here today and gone tomorrow. Without Christ, we, too, would perish in the flames of hell for all eternity. Pray for boldness to share the gospel with those who do not know Christ. It is urgent! The season of life is short and once "the grass withers and the flower fades" we will not have a second chance to preach the gospel.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

A word to my single friends

While home sick with the flu, I decided to rummage through my husband's books to see if I could find any good reading material to fill my time. In his stash of books was a thin paperback by Jay Edward Adams entitled Christian Living in the Home. The title caught my attention and I devoured it in just a few hours of reading.

The book deals with (as you may well surmise from the title) Christian Living in the Home. Much of the book is directed to the marriage and parent/child relationships, however, there is a very insightful chapter on singleness, which I would highly recommend any Christian single to read.

I did not meet my husband until I was almost 27 and had never seriously dated anyone prior to that. Believe me. . . I had plenty of time to question whether or not God was going to bring someone into my life! I didn't want to waste my time of singleness by making one of two common mistakes: 1) Focusing too much on my singleness and missing out on the joys that come during that season or 2) Focusing too little on my singleness and missing a wonderful opportunity to prepare and refine myself for marriage. During those years of singleness, I did a lot of reading on the subject. There are a lot of good resources out there, several that I would recommend (ask me sometime), however, none is as succinct nor as practical as Adams' handling of the topic.

If you are anything like me, you are probably looking for a sound biblical perspective on this issue. Not only that, but you're probably also searching for some practical advice regarding steps you can be taking right now to prepare yourself spiritually and emotionally for the time when God fulfills your desire to be married. This is one of the few writings on the topic of singleness that addresses both of those things. I hope that you have a chance to read it and find it helpful in your Christian walk.

P.S.--While you're reading, you may also want to read the two chapters following the chapter on singleness. One is addressed to wives and one to husbands. Both are excellent.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Cutting Corners

One of the most challenging and motivating things to do is scale-back financially. My husband and I have tried not to live off of my salary the last 8 months. We've done pretty well, but when the money is there, it is easy to blur the lines and use a little here to cover this and a little there to cover that. And, in addition to using it to cover daily expenses, we have used a portion of it to do things like build up a savings reserve, fix up our back yard, buy furniture, travel and eat out. I must say, we've enjoyed living "high on the hog" but now we're buckling down and getting serious about transitioning to a single income. I'm already half-way through this pregnancy and we want to have our financial plan in place and active before the baby is born. That means, we need to act NOW.

Being given the title of family financial manager, I sat down last night and analyzed every last penny we've been spending. I may be weird, but I get a strange sort of thrill from looking at our financial portfolio and figuring out ways to cut corners. I like knowing exactly where we stand.

I am so thankful to have a husband who is a hard and skilled worker. I know he puts in 100% at work, even when his co-workers don't. I think God is very honored by that and I know that I am proud to be the wife of a man that really tries to work "as unto the Lord." And, I am also thankful that with the money he earns, he desires to manage it in a way that glorifies God.

After analyzing every spending category, I brought my findings to the attention of my husband and we tried to brainstorm some ideas. The easiest "corner" to cut would be our giving, but under his direction (and I heartily agree), that isn't an option. So, we're figuring out other creative ways to trim away our spending and continue to build our savings. It's a fun challenge and I'm looking forward to it.

All I can say is that I'm glad we bought our airline tickets to Prague BEFORE we decided to buckle down and get serious!

Monday, May 22, 2006

From the kitchen window

Since the title of this blog is From Rebecca's Kitchen Window, I thought I'd post a picture of what I see out one of my kitchen windows.

Last summer, our backyard showcased a lovely weed patch from fence to fence. After hours of labor (largely on the part of my husband who did all the hard work, like putting in sprinklers), we are looking at a much more inviting setting for this summer's backyard barbecues.

I've been really proud of the results. Gardening is one of those activities that offers very tangible, visible rewards, and I am beginning to love it! We didn't spend a lot of money and have done all of the work ourselves (except for the cement patio). The roses are blooming, the gladiolus are pushing up through the soil, and the wisteria vines are growing. Who says the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence?!?!

Wednesday, May 17, 2006


Being home is nice. Being home sick with the flu is not so nice. Being sick with the flu when you're pregnant is even less nice.

I can say, however, that I've really enjoyed the Jello. It's a wonderful alternative medicine for those of us who have been sworn off of every known drug for 9 months. Who needs Nyquil or Advil Cold & Flu? A bowl full of cran-raspberry Jello is just about as effective, right? Just don't let my doctor know that I'm finding Jello to be a great cure-all. She might add it to the already lengthy list of taboos, right next to all my other favorite remedies!

Monday, May 15, 2006

Friday, May 12, 2006

Wedding Link

For those of you (ahem, Jessica) who wanted to see wedding pictures, hope you enjoy. As my sister reminded me the other day, a lot has changed in 8 months--mostly my waistline! The week prior to our wedding, I was seriously ill with the flu. I had lost so much weight from being sick that my wedding dress was too big. Fast forward 8 months and I'm shopping for elastic-waisted clothes because I've outgrown everything! I wonder what God has in store in the next 8 months. . .

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

A Sip of Summer

Nothing signals summer like fresh homemade lemonade and limeade. In our house, yesterday was the kick-off of summer.

Limes were on sale and I'm a sucker for sales. So, last night at 9:45 I pulled out the juicer and started juicing the limes I bought on a whim at the grocery on my way home from work. At 10:00 my husband was wondering what all the ruckus was about (those electric juicers can be quite noisy) and at 10:30, we were sipping on glassfuls of summertime!

I think I've finally perfected the recipe to have just the right combination of mouth puckering and lip smacking. Give it a whirl and let me know what you think.

Rebecca's Fresh Lemonade/Limeade


About 10-12 medium sized limes and/or lemons (enough for about 1 1/4 cups of juice)

2 1/2 cups tepid water

1 cup sugar

2 cups ice cubes

about 3 cups cold water

pretty glass pitcher


Finely grate the rind of 1-2 limes/lemons. Reserve.

Combine sugar and tepid water in sauce pan and heat over medium heat to completely dissolve sugar. Remove from heat and allow to cool.

Meanwhile, juice the limes/lemons (save one empty rind). Add juice to lime/lemon zest. Cut empty rind into small wedges and add to juice mixture.

Add ice and juice mixture to sugar base and carefully transfer to pitcher. Add cold water to taste.

Serve over ice in tall glass goblets to your favorite 6-8 people =)

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Yosemite Pictures

1) The view from our room
2) Afternoon Tea in the Great Lounge

3) Biking the Valley Floor 4) Dressed for Dinner

5) On the bridge at the bottom of Yosemite Falls

6) Yosemite Falls

A Weekend in Yosemite

For one of our wedding gifts, we received a weekend get-away in Yosemite at the Awahanee Lodge. When we opened our gifts back in October, seven months seemed so far away. But, as always, time flew by and now we're already back from our trip. Our room had a wonderful view and we were able to enjoy a 5-course dinner in the Lodge's dining room.

The weather and scenery could not have been more beautiful. The falls were absolutely stunning. And, due to a rock-slide at the southwest entrance, there were less tourists than we expected. On Saturday, we took a bike ride and on Sunday, a nature walk up to the bottom of Yosemite Falls (brrr!). And, of course, I took a ton of pictures with my new camera!

There is something amazing about Yosemite. The sheer granite cliffs, the majestic waterfalls and the rushing rivers are reminders of how powerful and beautiful God is. Truly, there is nothing that man has ever created that can even come close to the stunning beauty of nature. The best we can do (and we do quite well because He made us to be creative beings) is to imitate God's creation. But God created from nothing. . . nothing but His own imagination. He is so amazing!

Friday, May 05, 2006


My sweet husband surprised me with a digital camera for my birthday.  He knew I had been wanting one but I never, ever guessed that I would actually get one.  So. . . expect more pictures to accompany this blog.  As soon as I figure out how to use the camera, that is!

Thursday, May 04, 2006

16 1/2 weeks

After my 15-weeks post, I was surprised by the number of people who emailed me and said they wanted frequent baby bump updates.

So, to all of you who are interested, here you go. This was taken yesterday--16 weeks and 4 days into the pregnancy. I've been amazed by how much I've popped out in the last 2 weeks. My weight has only changed by a little over one pound in that time, but suddenly none of my regular clothes fit.

I'm quite thankful for the cute maternity styles that are out right now. My husband says he thinks my maternity clothes are more stylish than my regular clothes (maybe that's because they aren't 5 years old like the rest of my wardrobe!). At any rate, I'm glad I'm not having to resort to muumuus and tent-dresses . . . yet!

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Why today is a great day. . .

I got 8 hours of sleep last night (see Favorite #16). When I woke up, it was warm and sunny out (#1), and a bright pink rose had blossomed overnight (#5) I got dressed in my new maternity clothes (#3), brushed my teeth (#25 & 26) and went out into the living room. Waiting for me in the hallway was a handwritten card from my husband (#4). Josh asked me if I wanted to go out to dinner tonight, my pick (#9).

Once I got to work, I had an inbox full of emails (#12) from several good friends, wishing me "happy birthday". For lunch, Yvette (#14), Nikki and I enjoyed Subway turkey sandwiches (#15) in the sunshine of the downtown plaza (#21). When I returned to my desk, a large bouquet of gorgeous flowers (#20) was waiting for me with another hand-signed card from my husband (#4). My coworker returned from lunch a few minutes later with a Passionfruit Lemonade Tea for me (#2). And all before 2:00!

So far, this has been a wonderful birthday! Who wouldn't want to turn 28!?

28 Things

When I was in college, I came up with a little birthday tradition.  Every year, on my birthday, I try to jot down a list of my favorite things--the number of items on the list equal to the number of years I am celebrating.  The idea is to capture all the little things that represent me at that moment in time. I've really enjoyed looking back at those lists.  It's fun to see what foods, clothes, music, books, people, etc that I liked and how my tastes have changed.  The lists aren't profound, neither are they comprehensive; they are just the first 28 (in this case) things that come to mind. I only wish that I had started earlier, back when the lists were shorter!
So, here goes.  Here is today's list (in no particular order):
28 Things I Love
1. Spring
2. Passionfruit Lemonade Tea
3. Maternity Pants (ahh, they are so comfy!)
4. My Husband's Handwriting (especially when he writes me cards)
5. Watching Things Grow in the Garden
6. Cooking
7. Fresh Squeezed Lemonade
8. Ranunculus
9. Olive Garden
10. Feeling the Baby Move
11. Reading My Friends' Blogs
12. Email (especially for friends who don't live nearby)
13. Digital Cameras (what a great idea!)
14. Lunchtime Walks and Talks with Yvette
15. Subway Deal-of-the-Day
16. Sleeping 8 Consecutive Hours at Night (enjoying it while it lasts)
17. Olive, the Dog
18. Morning Bike Rides with My Husband (when we actually have the willpower to get out of bed!)
19. Traveling to Cool Places like Mexico and the Dominican Republic
20. Unexpected Flowers at Work
21. Eating Outside in the Cool Mornings and Evenings
22. Hymns: Ancient & Modern
23. Alistair Begg (on the radio on my morning drive)
24. Reading the Daily Bible Every Night with My Husband
25. Crest Extreme Mint Toothpaste
26. Listerine
27. Getting Real Mail

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Desiring to be with Christ

Last night, for some unknown reason, I had trouble sleeping. I think the longest stretch was 20-3o minutes. (Maybe it was newborn-training!) Needless to say, I'm very, very tired this morning. God sent me a word of encouragement through this morning's daily reading in Charles Spurgeon's Morning and Evening. I've posted it here and hope that you also find it profitable, even if you slept a full eight hours.
"I pray not that thou shouldst take them out of the world."
-- John 17:15
It is a sweet and blessed event which will occur to all believers in God's own time-the going home to be with Jesus. In a few more years the Lord's soldiers, who are now fighting "the good fight of faith" will have done with conflict, and have entered into the joy of their Lord. But although Christ prays that his people may eventually be with him where he is, he does not ask that they may be taken at once away from this world to heaven. He wishes them to stay here. Yet how frequently does the wearied pilgrim put up the prayer, "O that I had wings like a dove! for then would I fly away and be at rest;" but Christ does not pray like that, he leaves us in his Father's hands, until, like shocks of corn fully ripe, we shall each be gathered into our Master's garner. Jesus does not plead for our instant removal by death, for to abide in the flesh is needful for others if not profitable for ourselves. He asks that we may be kept from evil, but he never asks for us to be admitted to the inheritance in glory till we are of full age. Christians often want to die when they have any trouble. Ask them why, and they tell you, "Because we would be with the Lord." We fear it is not so much because they are longing to be with the Lord, as because they desire to get rid of their troubles; else they would feel the same wish to die at other times when not under the pressure of trial. They want to go home, not so much for the Saviour's company, as to be at rest. Now it is quite right to desire to depart if we can do it in the same spirit that Paul did, because to be with Christ is far better, but the wish to escape from trouble is a selfish one. Rather let your care and wish be to glorify God by your life here as long as he pleases, even though it be in the midst of toil, and conflict, and suffering, and leave him to say when "it is enough."