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springtime hope

Jane Austen once wrote that a couple with a 15-month-old who brings a newborn home and then proceeds to survive two weeks of planting season will be able to withstand any trial that may befall their marriage.

She didn't actually say that, but if she had been a dairy farmer she definitely would have used it as an opening line to a book.

I've been MIA lately because of said newborn -- sleep being a vastly overrated commodity in his world -- but we're doing well here.

The corn is planted. The beans are going in the ground. The heifers have been worked. The rain has finally let up.

And while coffee is in high demand in our house these days, we are giving thanks for all those things.

For instance, Chris was still up planting at 1:30 in the morning a few weeks ago. I was up feeding the baby. I was texting him jokes to keep him awake. He was sending me good Vince Gill and George Straight songs he was listening to in the planter. It was practically like a date -- just minus the restaurant, babysitter and, you know, being together.

Our little boy also has silent reflux -- the variety that you can't see but you can definitely hear, the kind that causes him to cry for hours a day -- and we are getting that under control too. Or at least making progress in that regard.

Has it been the smoothest month of our lives? Not by a long shot.

But, as a recent Wall Street Journal article suggests, we have chosen a mantra to repeat for these days when the hours are long, the crying seems incessant and the sun refuses to shine.

It's not actually a mantra. It's a verse, and one that my dad has brought up several times recently, perhaps because he knew more than I did that I needed to hear it.

"Suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God's love has been poured into our hearts" (Romans 5).

That is what we repeat to ourselves at 1:30 in the morning or when a piece of machinery breaks down or the baby is feeling criddly. Trials aren't bad. Hard things are worth it. Suffering. Endurance. Character. Hope.

(Besides, when we are feeling tired or sorry for ourselves, we talk about the Little House on the Prairie. Do you know who doesn't have it bad? Us. Do you know who did? Ma. Ma Ingalls did. She had it ROUGH, people. Pa is wearing through the soles in his boots and Ma is having to deal with him moving all the time while taking care of her soddy and saving meat for the winter and making sure wolves don't run off with the children. I mean, a few newborn tears are nothing in comparison when you get right down to it. Some people say to man up. I remind myself to Ma Ingalls up.)

So we are planting. And we are taking care of babies. And thanks to our heavenly Father, who gives us warm spring nights, two chubby children, four lazy dogs, rolling hills, a programmable coffee maker, and each other, we are doing just fine . . .with lots and lots of hope.


  1. For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us. Romans 8:18

  2. Congratulations on your new little one!

  3. Love this! Congratulations on the new little man! Here's to a few hours of sleep. :)

  4. Congratulations on the birth of your son! May God continue to give you grace in the hard times while constantly reminding you of His love and care for you.

  5. Beautifully written! Congratulations on the newest piece of the puzzle!

  6. It's not at all in reality a good mantra. This is a saying, your decide one the fact that dad has brought away a couple of times a short time ago, potentially given that she learned around I did that should take note of it all.


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