"Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, "Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?" And I said, "Here am I. Send me!"
~Isaiah 6:8 NIV
"He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the LORD require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?"
~Micah 6:8 NASB

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Christmas 2013

Merry Christmas from Us!

Words can not fully describe how special it was to celebrate Anne's first Christmas.  Thinking back to last Christmas, I can definitely say that this year was filled with so much joy.  Anne won't remember much, if anything, of this year's Christmas but we will.  On Christmas Eve, my family celebrated Christmas at my parent's house.  We had dinner and gave each other the wonderful gifts that we purchased.  I love Christmas.

Christmas Day, we got up early and got ready to travel to Aunt Michelle's house.  Anne was well rested.  She gave her mommy a Christmas present by sleeping for 7 hours straight between Christmas Eve and Christmas.  Anne and I sang some Christmas songs while she ate breakfast and I got her dressed.  Then I read her the Christmas story out of Luke chapter 2.  She was wiggly and doesn't yet understand the amazing gift that was given to us on Christmas, Jesus, but she will as she gets older.
She will just love the presents that she received.  Great Grandma made her a rainbow colored baby blanket.  I love it.
 My mom gave her this wonderful bear.  It talks and will teach her about her body, sing songs, and help her learn language.
 The many faces of Anne's first Christmas.

 ...And now we are ready for start the journey back and go to bed.  The drive was really snowy, but Steve got us home safe.  Christmas wore her out and as a special Christmas present to mommy she slept for 7 hours again last night.

Monday, December 23, 2013


Thank you so much to the people that have supported our Wycliffe ministry this year. 
Have a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Let It Snow

* Now 25°,  Light Snow Feels Like 14°

It's a cold snowy day today.  The snow looks so pretty but I'm not looking forwarding to going out in it later.  It's been coming down pretty steady all day.  The news stations are predicting 4-6 inches before it's done.   Anne was just staring out the window earlier in awe.

We bundled her up in her snowsuit to get some pictures of her in First major snowstorm.  She was not a fan of the cold.  We did not stay out for very long.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Decorating for Christmas

Anne 'helped" me today decorate for Christmas.  Steve put the tree up this past weekend, but I haven't had a chance to put the ornaments on it yet.  I took advantage of the fact that mom was over to get the Christmas decorations up.

 I love this picture.  The Christmas tree is an ornament that was given to me by my Aunt Honey on my First Christmas in 1981.  The other was given to Anne for her First Christmas,
 Anne has her own little stocking.  I can't wait to put a little toy in it for her to open on Christmas.  She won't remember this Christmas since she is so young but we still want to make it special.

Monday, December 9, 2013

Two Month Update

I captured her laughing.
Our sweet little girl is two months old today.  Yesterday, we had her baby dedication.  She was beautiful.  She had her 2 month doctor's appointment today and got her first shots.  She did such a great job.  She fussed and cried a little while getting the shots.  Poor girl.  After I gave her some infant Tylenol, she calmed down a bit and has napped most of the afternoon.
This is Anne before her shots
This is Anne after her shots.  She seemed so confused about what happened.  She knew that the nurse hurt her but didn't know why.  She looked at me to rescue her.  She was pretty snuggly when we got home.  Then I put her in her swing for a nice long nap.

Weight: 9 lbs, 15 ozs
Eating: Milk is still her favorite food.  Steve has been taking the first morning feeding to give her a little extra sleep.
Sleeping: We have started trying to set up a bedtime routine.  If it's a bath night, we start with a bath.  She loves bath time.  Then we put her in a sleeper for the night and give her a bedtime snack.  She gets a new diaper and while she is getting a diaper change she gets bedtime lotion (a little baby massage) on her belly, arms, and legs.  Last, she gets swaddled and rocked to sleep.

She usually sleeps between 3 and 5 hours before waking up again for a new diaper and a snack.
Milestones & Firsts: Well, everything is new for her.  
Some noteworthy things were:
* I love her smiles.  I know sometimes it's just gas, but other times I think it's because she recognizes us.
* She celebrated her first Thanksgiving with a trip to Michigan.

* She had her first sleep over and Grandma's over Thanksgiving weekend.  Steve had to work all weekend and I didn't want to be alone in the house the whole time.

* We took her for her first Black Friday shopping.  We didn't stay out long and went in the afternoon to avoid the crowds.

* She loves her morning sing-a-long time during her breakfast.

* Her floor mat has gotten quite a bit of play in the last few weeks.  She is starting the focus more and reaching for the toys.  She isn't grabbing yet, but I think she is close.  For now, she just hits them to get them where she wants them and sometimes gets fussy if they don't "listen."

* She has started rolling on her side more and if propped up on her side she will try to roll over.  She is not a fan of "tummy-time" anywhere other than on Steve or myself so if she does roll over she gets fussy fast.

* She absolutely loves bath time.  It won't be long before she grows out of her sink bathtub.

* She loves to nap in her swing.  Sometimes she sleeps up to 3 hours during the day in her swing.

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Thanksgiving 2013

I have so much to be thankful for this year.

  1. "The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and I am helped. My heart leaps for joy and I will give thanks to him in song." Psalm 28:7

    I am thankful for a God that loves me unconditionally and provides for all our needs.  I'm thankful that I serve a God that doesn't give up on me, even when I feel like giving up on Him.  I'm thankful for a God that hasn't a perfect plan for each of us, even when I don't understand that plan.  I'm thankful that God is my strength and my comforter.
  2. I'm thankful that we several Bibles in our house because we are blessed to have an abundance of English translations available to us.  I'm thankful for an organization, Wycliffe, that has a goal to bring the Bible to every people group, even those that don't even yet have a written language.
  3.  I'm thankful for my amazing, loving husband.  We have been through so much in the last few years and have grown stronger together.
  4. Anne is our rainbow baby and a blessing.  Someday she will understand what that means.  We love her so much.  Words cannot even begin to describe what a miracle she is.  There are days that I just stare at her beautiful face in awe that she is really here.  I'm thankful that I'm able to stay home and take care of her everyday.  I love watching her experience all her "firsts."  The look of awe and wonder on her face when she figures something out or experiences something that first time is so fun to watch.
  5. I'm thankful for my family.  I'm thankful for parents that are still married after 33 years.  My parents taught me the value of marriage and commitment.  They taught me the value of work and that there was no such things as a free lunch.  I'm thankful for sisters and a brother that love each other.  I'm thankful for an extended family that loves each other.
  6. I have some of the greatest friends anyone could ask for.  The few years have not been easy for me and one thing you realize when bad things happen is who your friends are.  I'm thankful for their listening ear and their hugs.  I'm thankful for the new friends I made in an incredible online support group.  I don't know how I would have got through it without them.
I have so much more to thankful for.  I could list things forever.  We have a home, food to eat, electricity, jobs that provide for our needs, a ministry that we love, monthly financial partners that believe in us, people that love us that prayer for us regularly, and much more.

Happy 1st Thanksgiving Anne!

Friday, November 22, 2013

One Happy Mom

 I love watching Anne learn new things.  She doesn't usually like to lay on the floor.  Frankly, she is not often a fan of not being held.  We have been trying to have floor time a little every day just so she gets used to playing by herself.  This morning though I got out her play mat to see if she would at least try to play with it.  She seemed to enjoy looking at all the colorful animals.  She just sat and stared at the lion for several minutes.  She is so close to grabbing ahold of the giraffe.  She just hits it and occasionally pushes it by her face.

 She loves her new swing.  Our friends Mike and Sarah has a swing similar to this one and she loved it when we were in Ohio.  For the past week, she would only take about 20 minutes naps by herself.  Yesterday, she slept for 3 hours.  I was able to get all the dishes and laundry done.  I even got to cook myself some lunch.  Thank you Once Upon a Child.  Today, she has been napping for an hour.  We will see what I can get done today.
I'm so in love with this little girl.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Anne's Nursery

I figured since she is almost 6 weeks old now, it's probably time that I post some pictures of Anne's nursery.  She is one blessed little girl.  We love her so much.  She has a great view out of the backyard out her window.  Her rainbow bears keep watch of the room.

She has more clothes then I do.  She has a closet in her room with newborn sizes that she is wearing now and 0-3 month that she will be wearing next.  In the other room, we put the bigger sizes that she will grow into.  It's hard to imagine her that big since she is so tiny now, but she is growing so fast.  Her socks, hats, blankets, burp clothes, etc are in drawers in the other room too.
Her changing table and baskets of onesies and sleepers in newborn and 0-3 month size.  The big basket on the top shelf has her cloth diapers in it.

Her dad is a bit of an Ohio State fan so it should be no surprise that her room is Ohio State themed.

Rewarding Wycliffe Weekend

We had another fun-filled weekend.  Steve was invited to speak at two different churches, one on Saturday evening and the other on Sunday morning.  Friday afternoon, we drove to Toledo, OH to visit Steve's Grandma.  Anne loved meeting her Great Grandma.   Steve's brother Randy and his father stopped by his Grandma's house to meet baby Anne too.  We stayed overnight at Steve's Grandma's apartment on Friday night.

Then Saturday, we were off to Lima, OH so Anne could meet her Aunt Stephanie, Uncle Carl, and her cousins Ariana and Heiress.  Of course, Anne loved them too and they loved her.  Saturday was a busy day with a lot of driving.  Anne did a great job tolerating being in her car seat for so long.  Saturday evening, we stopped at Great Hope Missionary Church in New Carlisle and Steve shared with them our Wycliffe ministry and how they can be a part of it.  Anne was so excited and proud of her daddy that she started cheering (ie: crying) right as he started talking so I missed a portion of his talk.  It was a pretty small church and everyone was really nice and welcoming to us.  They invited us to join them for their after church potluck too.
Saturday evening, we stayed with our friends Mike and Sarah again.  They are spectacular friends and Sunday morning Steve shared about Wycliffe at their church service.  We are so excited that God is opening up these opportunities for us to share the great work that He is doing in Bible Translation.  We are always looking for new opportunities, not just to whole churches but also to small groups too.  God has been good to us this year.  We are praying hard that He continues to provide as only He can.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

One Month Update

Our sweet little girl is one month old today. I can't believe it.  We love her so much.  I love watching her discover new things.

Weight: 7 lbs, 13 ozs
Height: 22 inches

Eating: She is still eating around the clock.  Usually about every 2-3 hours and sometimes as often as every hour.  She still wakes us up throughout the night to eat.

Sleeping: She is more alert and awake during the day in the past week.  Her eyes seem to be able to focus more.  She will turn her head to the sound of our voices.  I try to get her to take a short nap during the day, so I can get things done around the house.  When she is awake, she wants to be held.  We are going to have to work on that in the future, but for now I'm enjoying my snugglebug.  She still only sleeps about 3 or 4 hours at a time at night.

Milestones & Firsts: Well, everything is new for her.  
Some noteworthy things were:
* She had her first road trip to Ohio.  
* She "watched" her first Ohio State game.
* It could have just been gas, but I think she smiled at us.
* She is holding her head up more and starting to push with her legs against my legs
* She loves to snuggle up on daddy's lap and fall asleep.
* We tried cloth diapers this week and it involved a blow out and a whole wardrobe change.  Her legs appear to be too skinny still for the ones we have.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Anne's First Road Trip

This weekend we took a 4 hour drive to Springfield, Ohio.  It was Anne's first road trip.  I love documenting all her "firsts."  I just love watching her figure things out and learn new things.  She slept almost the whole way to Ohio, except for when we stopped to eat and get gas.  She woke up and started to protest her being in the car seat still about 10 minutes before we got the Riley's house.  She did a pretty good job sleeping during the night, even though it was a new environment.  She is growing up so fast.  We stayed with some friends, Mike and Sarah.  Anne just loved meeting some new friends.  At first, we thought that they trip would too long for Anne, but she traveled like a champ.

I don't think we had any idea just how much stuff we would have to bring with us just for her.  The car  is full of Wycliffe stuff, her stuff, and a few things for us.  I just hope we didn't forget anything.  We will probably have to do laundry if she keeps spitting up on her "spare outfits."

Steve had the joy of speaking at the morning service at Trinity Missionary Church in Springfield, OH this morning.  Steve shared about who we are, what we will be doing with Wycliffe and did a message on 1 Timothy 1:5.  
"But the goal of our instruction is love from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith." 1 Tim 1:5 (NASB)

τὸ δὲ τέλος τῆς παραγγελίας ἐστὶν ἀγάπη ἐκ καθαρᾶς καρδίας καὶ συνειδήσεως ἀγαθῆς καὶ πίστεως ἀνυποκρίτου, 1 Tim 1:5 (Greek New Testament)
Everyone at the church was really great and seemed receptive to Steve's message.  They also loved meeting baby Anne.  She did such a great job listening to her daddy speak.  We are praying that God will lead some in the church to partner with us and our ministry.  We had so much fun this morning meeting everyone.  Steve has known the pastor for many years since he was a counselor at Ludlow Falls.

Mike and Sarah have a 4 month old son.  Sweet baby Anne looks so little next to Johnny.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Anne's First OSU Game

Anne is all ready to watch her first Ohio State game. 
Steve is hoping that OSU will pull out a win for Anne's first game.
Anne also had a great time meeting her Great Grammie.

 She loves her daddy
Four generations  - (From left) My mom, Anne, me, My Grandma

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Anne Michal's Birth Story

I'm not sure I can put into words exactly all the emotions I'm experiencing right now.  I am so in love with this little person.  The moment that she was born has nothing on the Grinch.  I think my heart grew 10 times.  She is so perfect.  After everything we have been through to get her, I can't believe she is finally here.  Our beautiful, precious, perfect rainbow is finally here.  I'm not going to lie and say that labor was a breeze.  It was not; it was rough but Steve was such a great labor coach.  I'm so glad that we took the childbirth class.  Laura Meyer was a great teacher.  The moment she was born I forgot all about it the pain and just wanted to see her.  Now, I'm just loving my new family and recovering physically.

The Short Version:
Anne Michal Pitney entered the world at 4:17pm on October 9th, 2013.   She was 6lbs, 3 ounces and 19 inches long.

The Long Version:
 I woke up at 1:45am on Wednesday morning thinking that I had to go to the bathroom.  As soon as I stood up, my water broke.  What a way to wake up in the middle of the night.  I was surprisingly awake after that.  I woke up Steve and told him to which he responded, "Are you sure?"  Yup, I was sure.  I was hard to miss.  I wasn't feeling any major contractions, so we figured we had a little time.  Steve took a shower and I running around the house making sure that we weren't forgetting anything.

We got to the St. Joseph Regional Hospital at about 3am and we admitted to triage.  The ran some tests and said that I was only 1cm dilated but since my water broke they were keeping me there.  They were also concerned about the color of the fluid and tests which indicated the presence meconium, which is essential baby's first bowel movement taken inside the womb instead of outside.
Because of this, my OB (who was amazing) said that NICU would be there in the room to exam her as soon as she was born.

After 4 hours, I was only 2cm so my OB considered putting me on Pitocin to get active labor started but wanted to try a pill first.  The pill worked and the "fun" began.  We had a tub in our room which I loved.  I sat in there for a hour at one point...totally recommend to anyone delivering at St. Joe - ask for the room with the tub.  The nurses were all so nice and had some great helpful advice.  Steve was a great coach helping me focus on breathing and making sure I was drinking enough water.

At 2:20, I was finally 7cm and ready for the epidural.  Two hours later, she entered and was whisked away to the NICU team in the room.  My OB and the nurse were so excited when she was born that they forgot to tell us the gender.

My parents, who had been there since the morning, were there to meet their grandchild just moments after she was born.  At St. Joseph, they have "The Golden Hour" which is basically a whole hour when I get to hold the baby and it's just time for mom, dad, and baby to bond.  No visitors, no doctors or nurses...just us.

They kept us in the hospital for 48 hours for recovery and to run tests and assessments.  We finally took her home Friday evening.

Our First Professional Family Photo
All Ready to go home