April 28, 2010

Vicious cycle

So, TEN DAYS AGO I got a cold...and I thought it was getting better, and then last night I woke up several times with a flamin sore throat and have spent all day feeling crappier than I have in a while.


I honestly don't really know what to do other than take vitamins-since there are NO cold medicines that I can take while being pregnant. Which is super stinky. I guess this is making up for six months without being sick, huh?!


Here it is a time when I need to be at my most physical ( imagine me walking up and down flights of stairs multiple times a day, carrying things from our current home to our new house)...and I feel down right puny. GAH!

I suppose this is teaching me patience, because I suppose there is really no REAL rush in getting everything moved in by Friday. I mean, it won't be HORRIBLE if I find myself spending all weekend doing all these things.

But, honestly my to-do lists are haunting me.

And so...so, I strive to keep things in perspective.

Read this in my time with God this morning:
"But God will ransom my soul from the power of Sheol, for he will receive me." Ps 49:15

April 22, 2010

The renters clause

So, Brett and I are the proud "renters" of a Fort Benning house.....for anyone that's read this blog over the last few months, I KNOW I do not have to tell you how happy I am about this!!
No more driving an eternity to get to civilization, no more DEADZONE for my iphone, and not to mention the all important see ALL OUR BELONGINGS AGAIN! My dishes! My picture frames! My artwork! My bedding!! YAY!


Here's the deal though. The decision to live in someone elses house with someone elses stuff, running a heavy open door policy for any soldier or soldier family/friend member that needs to come and stay, plus getting some up-close and personal observation of the Woods ( who's house and stuff and ministry we were sitting on top of) has been such a learning experience for me. Sadly most of the lessons I have learned have not been how to do ministry better, or techniques in being a better witness of Christs love or anything nice like that ( although that does come into play) instead pretty much every lesson I've learned has been about how selfish and how stuck in my ways I am.

Soon after we moved in I read Luke 9:57-62, which incidentally is entitled "The Cost of Following Jesus" in my Bible and it talks about these three different characters who have different excuses for not following after Jesus. And the irony here is that I actually taught a lesson on these verses when I was living at Fort Lewis. HA! Apparently I needed to listen to my own cautionary tale because it became very very clear to me over the six months that we've lived in this house that while "The son of man has no where to lay his head" ( v. 58), I pretty much ASSUMED that God was going to give me a sweet pad with all sorts of personal space....WRONG. Basically, I thought that I was a sold out little follower of Jesus but apparently that "sold out"-ness had a lot of clauses attached.

And so, over the past 6 months I've been slowly whittling away at my clauses.

I am writing this now, a week before we move ( we aren't getting our belongings until the next of next week so we'll be here one more week before officially moving), because I feel certain that I will need to learn these lessons again...why? Because I've been on a constant learning-cycle-rinse-repeat for SIX MONTHS and I feel like I've only barely gotten them through my thick skull. And I know, that there will be all sorts of new uncomfortable situations in our future. Because uncomfortable is what we've signed up for- That was the big following Jesus clause that was right up there in big red letters.

April 21, 2010

What's in a name?

So the story of how Baby Hiphopopatomus's name came to be started so long ago that Brett and I can not remember who exactly mentioned it first. Which is really the best way to come up with a name. In some ways it makes me feel like there was no question about it, since all other names that were discussed ended up just being "back ups" no matter how we looked at it.
And so, while we still have not decided on his middle name, Ransom has been his first name in my mind before he even really existed.

I do remember talking about the name while Brett was in Afghanistan. We first and foremost loved it because it was a constant reminder that Christ paid the ransom for our sins when He died on the cross-that each and every one of us was bought and paid for-when we didn't do anything to deserve it. In fact, the hymn that we had the congregation sing at our wedding ( How Deep the Father's Love for Us) has the line, "His wounds have paid my ransom." So you could say the name has been on our hearts from the very beginning.

And then there was the icing on the cake. Which is really for my literary following, if you haven't read C.S. Lewis's Science Fiction trilogy ( aptly called The Space Trilogy or Ransom Trilogy ) you should go get your hands on a copy of "Out of the Silent Planet" RIGHT NOW! These books are wonderful, as really all of C.S. Lewis's books are and so the fact that his Hero is also named Ransom...well, that seemed fitting since Brett and I first bonded over our love for C.S. Lewis and Tolkien ( our child should feel lucky his name is not going to be Aragorn or something! haha! ). And so, really, there was never much of a question...no other name fit quite as well, and that is the story of why.

It has been hard telling people the name because a lot of people have obviously turned up their noses...which, for the record, I suppose I understand. It is definitely not a conventional name, but since Brett and I are both lovers of words it was almost impossible for us to have a name that didn't have special meaning to us personally...and so we have, for the most part, ignored the looks of disapproving. And I hope that one day our son will hear the story of his name, and he'll love it as much as we do. It is my prayer, that just as his name tells a story of Christ's love for us, so will the life that our son lives.

So, there you go, the story of the name!

April 20, 2010

breaking the pattern

So, I made it 26 weeks without getting any kind of cold or flu or anything which is pretty incredible considering that I went through the fall and all of the winter, everyone around me was dropping like flies and yet I didn't get sick! It was awesome, and then I was making dinner last night and my throat started to hurt and it didn't take long for my nose to start to run and ta-da! I have a cold!!!

I literally walked around in a haze today. I ran several errands where I would go into the store, wander around and come out with nothing.

Just in time for this evening when we had four guys over for dinner ( that's not counting the three that are currently living with us), all total I was feeding 8 guys! So, anyway, I figure that if I can do that with a serious head cold than I assume I can some how take care of a baby on little to no sleep....well, actually, no. I'm still not so sure! haha!

April 19, 2010

Abigail's version of "Nesting"

So, its come to this. I'm finally coming up on my third Trimester. ROCK ON. And I have just gone ahead and given in to my Nesting desires. I mean, sure, I don't really have any place to actually make said "nest", but thank goodness we live in the modern age. The age of computers. The age of websites. The age of bookmarks.
Which brings me to my new favorite indulgence. It is SO much better than looking at magazines or making clippings from catalogues ( which is what we all did in the olden days), now I just click up on my toolbar where it says "bookmark" and I place all the things I want for my "nest" inside. In fact, really, its even better than a REAL LIVE nest ( sorta, or at least that's what I'm telling myself) because I don't actually have to PAY for any of it! YAY!

And now I'm going to force my nesting upon you like a person would force a slide show of boring vacation pictures on you at a dinner party ( which, incidentally has now been translated into the seemingly innocent "facebook photo album")

Without further ado my Nesting Wish list:

I would like this for my "new" spare bedroom that I do not actually have...

Its a "wrought iron headboard wall decal" from Mina Javid, how fun is the idea of having wall art instead of an actual headboard?!

Since our "new" house will have wood floors ( this is actually a true fact, we just don't actually live there yet), I would like this for our living room floor:

Martha Stewart has come up with these super cool tile rugs ( 19.7" x 19.7") that you can then put together for your own custom rug. Sweet.

OK, so this next one is for the "new baby" room that will one day exist...and you guys can totally help me with this one!

I got this picture off of HGTV's website of Beautiful Baby Rooms and I was immediately captivated by the idea of having a model of the solar system as a mobile for the baby room! For one thing, the planets kind of have special significance to little Hiphopopotamus's name ( post coming soon) and for another it just seems like a cool alternative to all the "babyish" mobiles I've seen around...Incidentally, I also like the idea of securing buckets on the wall as a cool place to store toys and stuffed animals.

Ok, so on to the next one is another "new baby" room item that I'm just dying to have:

These totally cute Garlands can be found at Mahar Drygoods, with a whole bunch of other really fun products that if I was at all crafty I could probably make myself...but I'm not and so I'm stuck just wishing I could buy them...alas, the garland I want is out of stock :-( ...But maybe I could commission one of my fabulous crafty friends to make them for me, hmmmmm?! I'll pay well I promise!

This last one just seems like something fun to have, though I'm not sure exactly where in the house I'd put it ( but isn't that half the fun? Finding a place for something?)

I found this tray and stand at westelm. com

So there you have it, folks! My nesting wish list...seriously, its almost as satisfying as actually setting up a house!
So what's on your imaginary wish list?

April 17, 2010

Head on down to the nearest desert

So, I don't know if you've noticed but there are is a major geographical theme happening in the Bible. Now, its a pretty obvious one just because of where most of the Bible takes place, but for the purposes of this post I like to forget about the practical reason for all the deserts ( not to be confused with desserts...man, that one extra "s" and you've got a completely different feeling! But I digress) and instead focus on the application reason for all of them...I mean, think about it! How many hardcore biblical characters wandered around in deserts...without even looking at my bible I'm going to list a few: Abraham, Hagar, Moses, ( ALL the Children of Israel) Elijah, David, John the Baptist...there are a ton. And it always seems like a lot of learning happens out in the desert, doesn't it? This is beyond encouraging on so many levels, but, while I was doing my Sit Down with Jesus a few days ago, I was struck by a brand new 'desert' moment, here it is:

"And an angel of the Lord said to Philip, "Rise and go toward the South to the road that goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza. This is a desert place. And he rose and went. And there was an Ethiopian, a eunuch...He had come to Jerusalem to worship and was returning, seated in his chariot, reading the prophet Isaiah..." Acts 8:26-39

Now, I totally stopped quoting there, but if you're not familiar with this story, or haven't read it in a while go to the book of Acts in your Bible and finish it up...but for now take a little look see and check out what smacked me in the face:

Umm..yeah, for a little background, up until this point the book of Acts its pretty much stock full of CROWDS of people. I mean, after Jesus died on the Cross the disciples had their HANDS FULL with all the witnessing and the saving people and the growing of the Church. Everywhere you look there are literally THOUSANDS of people being saved and following Christ! Its pretty incredible. And then we get to this little incident. Where the Lord tells Philip ( who was probably use to the crowds and the major evangelistic moments by this time) and he tells him to head off to this certain location. Which, oh yeah, P.S. its a DESERT.
I wonder what Philip thought about that. I wonder if he wondered if the Lord was maybe a little off in his GPS. I mean, there was a lot of work to be done in the cities and villages! There were hundreds of thousands to be told about Christ! I mean, the harvest was just RIPE for the picking! But, instead he's sent off to the desert. Which is where the word "deserted" comes from. ( How could the Lord POSSIBLY have anything good happen out there?!?)
And yet, in this barren waste land of a spot, on this little road "in between" there was ONE GUY who was in need of instruction.

I think sometimes God sends us to Desert places. And sometimes he even interrupts us in the middle of doing "his business" in some busy locale and tells us to head off to that deserted spot. He seemingly stops "all the amazing work" that we're doing and tells us to go somewhere quiet, somewhere slow, somewhere where nothing ever seems to happen.....and yet, I guarantee He has a reason!
I don't know where you're located right now...if you're in the "busy city" of Jerusalem of your life or if maybe you're in the "desert road" that's outside-but let me assure you, there is a reason for both! There just might be just one person that's out there in the desert who needs your company, or maybe there is something out there that you need to see, but whatever the case when the Lord tells you to head into the desert, do what Philip did...arise. You'll find something good there. Promise.

And now for des(s)ert!

April 15, 2010

Around the corner

I realize its been days and days since I've posted anything-but if you knew the lovely pregnancy symptoms I'm dealing with you'd forgive. I'm pretty sure.

Annnnnd. I'll leave it at that.

So, the Navigator Conference this weekend was great. On several levels. On the superficial level, the hotel did not disappoint. It was fancy ( comfy beds! comfy beds!) and the service was outstanding and the food was yummy and just kept coming and coming...which was lucky, because I needed all that food to translate into energy for all of the catching up with people I had to do between all the really amazing speakers and workshops. Conferences are usually not my favorite thing ( I'm not gonna lie) because by nature I'm a rebel and so normally to be in rooms filled with OTHER people that are excited about the same things I'm excited about and doing the same things I'm doing I get all huffy and pouty and wonder why everyone is doing what I'm doing...except in this case. In the case of serving our military branches....then I'm pretty happy about all the other people there being just as pumped and just as willing to bring the gospel to people in ALL walks of life. Seriously its pretty close to heaven.

And now I'm home. Home as it is at the moment. We put ourselves on the waiting list to get a house on Fort Benning about a month ago now...and, well, nothings happened. I've tried to just not think about it and to just be "in the moment" here...but its HARD. I'm such a planner and so you can imagine that I've practically decided where every book, every dish, every piece of furniture is going to go...and then Brett lets me down easy by telling me it may not be until June that we get a place. JUNE! (!!!) Does anyone else know how far away June is?! But you know what even though I've been told that, I still have this sense of expectancy almost every day. This sense that surely not, God! Surely we'll get a call today that a place has opened up...
Do you ever have a sense of expectancy even when all the signs are pointing to "no"? Sometimes I think its important...

April 08, 2010

Wherein I do NOT talk about food...

So, my good friend Lindsay did a little calculations today and took note that of my 12 lasts posts, six of them are about food. hahaha!!!

I guess this proves that my fears that I would "never ever like food again" were greatly unfounded. Greatly. But seriously, that's how I felt! Its amazing how quickly one forgets how AWFUL morning sickness is...I guess this is why we are not all only children.

Annnyways, my topic for tonight is NOT pregnancy related ( and the townsfolk all rejoiced!) its about my weekend plans! Brett and I had a nice "restful" weekend last weekend ( i.e. we didn't travel anywhere) and now we're off again!! This time to the All Military Navigator Ministry Conference in Colorado! I'm excited for several reasons, first I'm going to get some MUCH needed fellowship time in with some of my bestest friends from Washington, secondly there are some SUPER COOL speakers and workshops that I get to attend and thirdly I know there will be ton of unexpected great times mixed in for good measure....such as the fact that this conference is being held in a nice hotel where I HEAR they have excellent beds. I cannot WAIT to sleep in an excellent bed. And those little tiny bottles of shampoo...I love those. Hotels. I'm a big fan.

So! There you go! I'll be back on Monday, if not sooner to tell you how it all goes down!

The olden days ( I'm assuming)

I'm not quite sure what life was back in the "olden days" but I do know that without my computer and without Brett ( he was using said computer to finish writing a paper), I am pretty bored. And so I decided the only reasonable thing to do was to make Banana Bread.

I've never made Banana Bread because it had "bread" in the title and I always assumed that bread was hard to make. But, then I came across a recipe on Simplyrecipes.com that actually used phrases like, "no mixer necessary" and "simple but perfect"....so I decided that even *I* could make it. And I was right!! It was easy and super yummy...and SCORE I used our almost gone bad bananas too!

( Gosh, I wish I could take prettier pictures of food...)

Anyways, here's the very simple recipe if you want to make Banana Bread too...

3 or 4 ripe bananas, smashed
1/3 cup melted butter
1 cup sugar (can easily reduce to 3/4 cup)
1 egg, beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon baking soda
( I also sprinkled in some cinnamon for good measure)
Pinch of salt
1 1/2 cups of all-purpose flour

No need for a mixer for this recipe. Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C). With a wooden spoon, mix butter into the mashed bananas in a large mixing bowl. Mix in the sugar, egg, and vanilla. Sprinkle the baking soda and salt over the mixture and mix in. Add the flour last, mix. Pour mixture into a buttered 4x8 inch loaf pan. Bake for 1 hour. Cool on a rack. Remove from pan and slice to serve.

April 06, 2010

A rebel's drink

Today was one of those days where things were made much better by being taken out for Pizza by my wonderful husband, and then finding a packet of Black Cherry Koolaid hidden in a back cabinet of the kitchen. SCORE.

I'm now drinking the drink that takes me directly back to two different times in my life. One being any birthday party growing up. We didn't have Koolaid on a regular basis at the Abt House...but I pretty much sported a red mustache at every birthday party I went to or had from the age of 4 to the age of 10. I'm feeling the sugar high as I write, but at the same time its just not as satisfying when you've had to personally stir the sugar into the water...it really SHOWS you just HOW much sugar you're drinking!! I prefer the ignorance of youth. Though I am thankful for the experience of age, I'm drinking this koolaid with a straw ( no mustache for me!).

The other major Koolaid memory would be visiting my sister when she was living on her own during college ( shout out to Stacey here.)...being the total rebel that she was, after moving out of the Abt House she drank Koolaid any time she wanted. Since I was only in my early teens at the time, and a loooong way from getting those kind of koolaid privileges of myself, I was totally jealous of her "grown up-ness". She got to eat Mac & Cheese any time she wanted and any kind of sugary cereal that she felt like buying. Which, as we all know, is the reason that we all grow up. She was so cool. ( She still is)

April 05, 2010


So, Georgia straight up cheated me out of my favorite temperature. 70 to 75 degrees is, as we all know, the perfect set of temperatures. And Georgia just decided to skip right on over from 60 ( too cold)...to 90 ( too crazy pills HOT). Which is why I bought a swimsuit today. Not a "hang out by the pool and catch some rays" swimsuit...because that would be WRONG on several levels. 1. The rays would kill me because those rays are like FIRE. and 2. I'm basically a beached whale. And no one wants to see that lying next to their pool...for one thing, they'd just start throwing water on me and pushing me towards the waters edge in the hopes of saving one of Earth's most magnificent creatures. Then everyone would just be embarrassed.

Anyways, the swimsuit I bought was for "hardcore swimming" purposes. Let's all take a stroll down memory lane and remember when swimming was literally my life ( up until I graduated highschool). Those were some nice years and the smell of chlorine still makes me terribly happy. But, that time in my life passed. And for some reason I have been hesitant to take up swimming as a full time form of exercise ever since. ( Wait, that's a lie. I do know the reason. Because most of the "free" pools that are available to me are only open for lap swimming at times that Abigail Is Never Ever Awake and Active.) Buuut, according to my sources, here at Fort Benning there are many pools for me to choose from and I can lap swim to my hearts content. This is important because, lets go back to the whole temperature thing. I had to do my "exercising" at 7:30pm last night because that was the first time that I stepped out side and didn't start sweating immediately. And so I bought a giant swimsuit ( we'll see how long it lasts me.) in the hopes that I will be able to continue to exercise through my third trimester.

I'll let you know how this goes....

April 03, 2010

Hot Cross Buns! Hot Cross Buns!!

I continued my tradition of making Hot Cross Buns for the second year in a row ( in the Abt family, if you did something once and it was fun, it could immediately become a tradition...and so, last year, when making Hot Cross Buns and they didn't turn out a total failure and people actually ate them-I decided, "And Lo it shall be a Tradition of Easter Proportions" So when Easter came around this year, and I was living in a house without my standup mixer ( and the all important dough hook) I went so far as to borrow one from a neighbor because IT WAS A TRADITION. AND YOU DON'T MESS WITH TRADITION.

I used Martha's recipe that you can find here...but I did NOT use raisins ( ew!) but doubled the dried cherries ( yessss!) and I also do not believe in making my own icing unless absolutely forced and I'm here to tell you that scooping a tub of Duncan Hines vanilla icing into a bag and then piping is JUST AS GOOD.

April 01, 2010

Another two bite the dust

So, last year I wrote a blog post that you can read here
that gives you a little run down of the applications that I use on my iphone on a daily/weekly/never basis.

And then this last week my sister and Tabitha both got iphones. Talking to both of them several times about their new toys has reminded me of just how wonderful my iphone is...in fact, SIDE NOTE:

The first moment that I can pinpoint as a moment when I was definitely acting pregnant, but we just didn't know I was pregnant yet was when we had just moved to Alabama (*sigh*) and realized that my phone did not work in the house ( or even on our street), so we went to the AT&T store to see if they had some sort of booster or something and sadly they said that yes, they do have boosters but they wouldn't work were we live ( A DEADZONE). So we go out to the car and we're sitting there, and Brett turns to me and says, "So, how important is having an iphone to you?"-or something like that...it may have even been "Do you mind getting a different phone?" Or who knows...but it doesn't matter what he said, because in my mind it translated into THIS IS THE END OF THE WORLD.
And so I burst into tears and sobbed. That's right, I sobbed. Over an iphone.

And bless his heart Brett did not check me into a mental institution right then and there. In fact, he was super nice about it...haha! And, well, I still have my iphone, I just can't actually USE the phone part when I'm in our house....so that just shows just HOW much of a stink I made about it. And also, it shows how much I love my phone ( hormones and irrationality aside).

OK, so without further ado here are some changes from that last post that I wrote about my applications. I still use Pandora all the time. And it really IS like having free satellite radio in your car. But, here are some other winners.

Facebook ( free). I know I said I hated it. But they've definitely improved. And while the computer version is much better. Its good in a pinch.

Readello ( free). This syncs with my googlereader so I can easily access my blog rolls when I'm away from my computer. AWESOME.

iflipr.( $3.99) I use this to memorize my bible verses for the week, but there are also like a MILLION other flashcards you can download for free and learn. SO EDUCATIONAL ;-)

Imdb ( free). Yes, they've made an application for this terrribly useful website that will then answer all your disputes with friends, spouses and yourself regarding who the actor is that played in that unnamed 1987 film that started with an "E"....seriously, this app quickly and easily solves all sorts of mindbinders for me.

Allrecipes.com ( I got the free version), the little brother of its counterpart website-you can easily access your own account ( therefore any recipes you've collected) or look up new ones...WHILE YOU'RE IN THE STORE. Fabulous.

E!Online ( free). Ahem. I hate to admit that I care a lot about celebrity gossip. Because I DON'T...but every so often you have a free moment and you really want to know how those Kardashian sisters are getting along. This app is for you.

Starbucks ( free) This one is really only useful when traveling. But then its WONDERFUL. It'll track where you are and then tell you where the nearest starbucks is...this has saved Brett ( since I'm currently not drinking coffee) from near breakdown several times.

Now for the really important one...that if you download it I want you to contact me IMMEDIATELY. Its called "Words with Friends" ( get the free version) and it allows you to play scrabble with anyone else who has the app too! So, go sign up today!! get yourself a little user name and then look me up ( Abigailsday) and then we can play scrabble together from ANYWHERE!!! HOW WONDERFUL WILL THAT BE?!?! ( Also, for those of you who are skeptics this is easier than real scrabble because it catches you if you use a nonexistent word and just doesn't let you play it...meaning if you can't think of a word just start putting letters together...you may get lucky and create a word you didn't even know existed. Like Brett did. Last night. With the word "forb" for 31 points. I mean, really?!? FORB?!?! ( but it is a word...I looked it up. )

Anyway. I look forward to your comments of any new, awesome apps that I absolutely NEED to get. ( Also, let me know when you're on Words with Friends so we can start playing ;-) )