Wednesday, August 27, 2014

copper and wool

It's a love story people! August 25th marks our 7th year of marriage. Seven whole whopping years. It doesn't seem like enough really. I feel like I've been with this man forever [but in a good way] :) I can still remember the very first day I saw his sweet face. We were at Liberty Bible Church...he came in late and sat right next to me during service. It was like magic was in the air. We might have even shared a Bible that day... [awwww]. I saw him later in the lobby, someone introduced him to a friend standing next to me. But no one ever introduced us. We just stole glances at one another thru the crowds of friends. That image of him standing against that wall in the Liberty lobby will forever be burned into my brain. I could have married him right then...{**swoon**}

Our paths crossed again later that day at a baseball game. We finally spoke. I remember how perfect the moment seemed. He was playing was a gorgeous was in the air...and then THUD. Derek had a head on collision with another guy on the field. It was NOT pretty...let me tell ya. And that pretty much sums up the story of our An amazing love story with a surprising THUD every now again...clearly sent by God to keep our heads out of the clouds.

From there it was lots of googaley eyes and smiling ear to ear...and driving around in his truck with me sitting in the middle of the benchseat...and talking on the phone for entire nights and then dragging ourselves to work without any sleep. Thank goodness we met and married within a year. Otherwise the people around us might have seriously died from our giddiness. No joke. We layed it on THICK :)

look at us lovebirds.
this was when he would get mad if i wasn't sitting next to him.
like i mean RIGHT next to him.

We went to one of our favorite places last night to celebrate this love story of ours...Heston's Bar and Grill in New Buffalo. We LOVE that place. It's simple and full of giant slabs of yummy meat. And they basically have no vegetables on the menu. It's our dream place :) 

We sat and munched on cheese and crackers and ate coconut shrimp and sent funny text messages to our very best friends on earth {Luke and Michelle}. I think the waitress was annoyed with us...who goes out to dinner and texts people? WE DO. Not normally though. On normal nights we don't touch our phones during dinner. But on a night when we celebrate our wedding, our life together...let it be known that WE TEXT THOSE TWO PEOPLE. I hope we do it for the rest of our lives...send them messages from wherever we are on our anniversary. They've been with us thru it all. From THUD number one to the latest and biggest of all THUDS...and everything in between. They're woven into this story of us.

I secretly snapped a picture of the old couple sitting near us at Heston's last night and sent it to them while we ate. Knowing one day it will be us. All four of us...old and silver haired with faces full of laugh lines that show we really lived this gift called life. I can just see us sitting there talking about our grandkids and our yards and about the good old days when we would can pickles and relish and jams on a whim while kids tore thru the house laughing and fighting. And the guys will be sitting there and smile those goofy grins at each other and will be totally drinking beers, both still probably packing heat and dreaming about old trucks.

see what I mean about beer and goofy grins and staring at each other???
We were married at their house, you know. In their YARD. It was one of the best days of my life. Perfect really. It rained hard that morning...but just hard enough to make the grass the most beautiful green color imaginable that afternoon. I remember everyone being worried around us...that RAIN. The chairs would be wet, it could be muddy; we hadn't really planned for a storm. It was an outside wedding and reception. But you know, ask anyone around us, we didn't care. We were ready to dance in the rain...make the most of whatever the day brought. And, oh did we dance. Like only the crazy Gora family can.

I thought a more lovie pic would be better here
than one of Bob doing his famous floor crawl :)
So here we are. We made it to another anniversary. We have SO MUCH to be thankful for. It's been quite a year, right? We're on the backside of another unplanned torrential that wore heavy on our hearts but in the end has refined our very souls. That RAIN. It's hard to see thru but it really does make the ol' grass greener. I'm looking forward to what the future holds for the little family of ours...all the good [and hard] years ahead. To the dinners out at Heston's Bar with our bestest of all the mornings ahead sitting on our porch reading our Bibles and listening to the leaves rustle while the kids crawl all over us...and to the nights ahead where the only THUD we hear is Rigby falling out of bed [this totally just happened by the way!].

Happy anniversary to my camoflauge wearing, beer loving, THUD surviving dream of a husband.

Love you babe. xo.

Saturday, August 23, 2014

It is well

I'm up to my ears this morning in house cleaning and interior projects...not to mention the fam, but I had to take a few minutes to blog otherwise it may NEVER happen. I'm trying to type as quiet as I a few minutes the three people that are able to walk will be crowding me and asking me for things. :)

So where do I start? How about with the biggest and best happenings as of late.

Derek is in the clear and released to work! Yep. We're back. It's August now, which means this is month of EIGHT of Derek being off work. [um, totally crazy, right?] So it is beyond awesome and a huge praise that he's been medically released to be a working man again. I can't believe we've even been able to make ends meet with no income to speak of for all this time. I know I repeat this ALOT. But my heart is overwhelmed really and it comes to mind often. It's been the amazing and giving people in our church, our family and dear friends, and those crazy ironworkers who have kept us afloat...and I'm sure the many who have even given to us without us even knowing. May God bless these people. Seriously. We have our home and food and new school backpacks because people gave to us from their very own pockets. Thank you all from the very deepest spot in my heart. Not having to worry about these things has really helped us to focus on what really matters in this life of ours...the people in it. That's been HUGE for us. It's been a long road and what you've all really given us is time to heal. And that my friends is priceless.

Derek graduated and officially has his "book" and a degree! That means if he can find a job, he'll be able to make that full ironworkers wage. Whooo-hooo! Plus, he graduated ya'll. I'm so proud of him. He worked hard these passed 3 years going to class, doing homework [like every night...ew] and working full time to make this happen. He really is the King of Iron [a nickname from school he may never live down...ha].
being a goof...
waiting to make it official
sweet victory!
great job guys
all that hard work payed off!!
[aka...king of iron]
We have a kindergarten-er...if that's even a word. Our little Rowan Mae is growing up. She had been saying for weeks that she did NOT want to go. But when the time came, she didn't even shed a tear [she left that for her Momma]. She is loving it too. The little homework papers, her new lunch box, recess with cousins, using pencils and erasing...the little sweet details that make this time so special for her. I pray blessings upon this child. That she will grow and live and give all of her heart to her God. That she will be a light in this world and in her classroom. Yes, I want her to learn and have dreams and be a genius, if she must. But more than all that, I want her to live each day fully to the One that makes all that possible. In the days before she started school I talked to her a lot about this God of ours. How He has a plan for her life. How he protects her and that she never needs to fear because her God is with her.

The night before she started school she asked me to read a story from her Bible. She chose "The Captain of the Storm" from Mark 4 and Matthew 8. And I love the way God works by the way. She chose the very bedtime story she needed to get her thru her own fear...that dreaded first day of school. It's the story of when Jesus falls asleep in the boat and that crazy storm comes...and his friends are scared sick because the waves are so high and crashing so hard that they are sure the boat is going to tip. Thru their eyes, it's chaos and fear. But they forgot that they're not alone in the boat. That big, huge FORCE that is God was there the whole time. He awakes and with a word..." 'Hush!'...the strangest thing happened. The wind and the waves recognized Jesus' voice"...and all the storm became still and quiet. This actually meant something to Rowan because one of her favorite songs to sing is It is Well by Kristene Dimarco. There's a part in the song that says "the waves and wind still know His name". This gave me the opportunity to explain the words she sings regularly. That even the wind and waves obey God...nothing can get in the way of the good plan He has for those that are His. Her eyes lit up to make the connection. A big truth, but simple enough to connect the dots. Gotta love that gospel.

We belted this song out on our drive to school Wednesday morning. Just me and my little fearful five year old. Praise God for a timely word and song.

So yes, my dear little one. Thru it ALL, keep your eyes on Him. Trust in Him, the waves and wind still know His name. Just like all those years ago on a boat carrying our Jesus and his friends. A good truth for us all. Five years old or over thirty five.

It is well friends. Jesus is in the boat with us.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

mr. eames

Two of my very good friends sent me a surprise in the mail the other day. I got a strange email telling me to go to DO [my old office] to pick up a package. I should have known they'd do something crazy. These two girls...big hearted, mischevious and beloved friends...who I miss SO much. I spent hours a day [for years] next to these two creative minds...designing, dreaming, celebrating each other's successes, and even torturing ourselves over the projects we hated. We shared ideas and had crazy nights out dancing and acting like nuts. Instant friends and confidants from the moment we met...and that's hard to find in the competitive interior design world. We planned our weddings together. Did life together. And everything is different now. They both moved away, on to bigger dreams. And I left the design world for my dream...{thegoralife}...these 3 beautiful babies and my rock star husband :). I know we're all happy where we are. But I still miss those days. Such sweet memories. Such good friends. So I guess I shouldn't be so surprised by this unexpected and over the top delightful gift. 

They called it a "baby" gift. But I'm pretty sure it's more for ME than baby Most people don't even know how amazing this gift is. I guess you sort of have to be into interior design or modern furniture and architecture to get it. And I'm POOR. Like dirt poor after Derek's dance with death. So fancy designer objects do not make their way into our house. So this really means a lot to this Momma. Thank you my lovelies. My jaw is still on the ground.

Hello Eames Elephant. I love you :)

even the box is amazing
Rowan and Rage testing out Mr. Eames
{so cute}
I love the look on little Rage's face...
he knows he's really something up there
and the big kids had some fun too...
bubble wrap anyone?
I told him to act like an elephant...hee hee
{precious elephant riding babe}

Friday, August 1, 2014

Rig is 4

Our Rigby turned 4 this year. How is that possible? It's been a year of transition for this little man. Not too long ago he was the baby around here, and now he's a big brother. And I'm not joking about the BIG part. This kid is about 60lbs and only four years old...and not fat or chunky at all. He's just solid. I always joke that his bones must be heavy...seriously...we can't figure it out. At the beginning of my pregnancy with Rage I had to quit picking up both kids because I had placenta previa. By the time the baby was born, I couldn't pick Rigby up even if I wanted to. We used to call him Biggy when he was a baby...a nickname he may never lose.

Besides the fact that he's huge size wise, this kid also has a HUGE heart. He is always willing to compromise with his sister, usually getting the short end of the deal. If he has a handful of candy, he'll even give you the last couple. He's just that kind of guy. He tells his friends he loves them and always asks for an extra hug at night when I tuck him in. My guess is that he gets this from his Daddy...that guy is ALL heart too.

Rigby also says the most hilarious things. I love to hear him tell stories. No one can say it quite like Rig. He has the sweetest giggle and loves to be tickled and wrestle. He also acts like a weirdo whenever people come over or he meets someone he'll hide behind a door and make animal sounds and throw things into the room where we are. ? I'm told Derek used to do this when he was little too. Another thing we can blame on him :)

He also loves to NOT wear clothes. This is sort of our biggest issue with him. He prefers underwear. JUST underwear. He refuses to wear clothes with buttons...pants, shorts, even shirts. The kid will not wear jeans. If bottoms must be worn, you better believe the waistband will be stretchy. It's like he wears old man clothes. I can't tell you how many times Derek has come home and said, "I want him wearing clothes." It's a daily battle.

He loves all things Ninja Turtle and camouflage. Dinosaurs are also on the top of his you can see by the shirt he insisted wearing for his birthday party. It was HIS birthday, I couldn't force the kid to wear the preppy shirt Momma had picked out :)

Look at those brown eyes...dreamy and sweet

Opening his presents!

Cake, need I say more?

his very own ride

Daddy giving him some helpful advice...
holding the pedal down was a challenge for some reason!

kawabunga dude

I thought these were so cute!

We even made our very own ninja turtle lanterns.
Thank you pinterest!