The Schro-Dos!

He has ARRIVED! I can breathe again! Let the celebration begin!

I have always wanted a house full of boys and Jonathan always wanted to build a wiffle ball team. Pretty cool to see how God really does give us the desires of our hearts!

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When working through names, I ran across one that meant, “Abundance” and I think that just about nailed it for us. God has truly blessed us abundantly, with our family, our health, the way He has orchestrated certain people in our lives to grow, encourage and mature us.  The way He has expressed His kindness, His faithfulness, His provision.  He has taught us so many good and hard lessons along the way.  We have a roof over our head, food on our table and love to go all around. We surely live in great ABUNDANCE! 

The middle name I wrestled with for quite some time. I wanted a family name but couldn’t quite settle on anything. At about 8.5 months into this pregnancy, Jonathan and I were enjoying a dinner with my parents and some friends, when someone  asked what Jonathan’s middle name was (which is his dad’s middle name also). THAT’S IT! Why did it take me so long?! And the meaning is spot on: “Peace” or “Peaceful Ruler.” Which is again, so very fitting.  Jonathan and I have truly enjoyed a time of peace, coming out of intense turmoil during the last pregnancy. And even personality wise, this boy has been wayyy more calm in the womb than Joram– who was practicing capoeira en utero and has been on the go ever since.

So there you have it. Allow me to introduce to you the newest member of the Schro-Home:

His name is Jethro Frederick, our Abundance.

The Lord gives strength to his people;
    the Lord blesses his people with peace. Psalm 29:11

Blessed beyond measure,

Amy

 

2 Years of Adventure!

Today is my son’s 2nd birthday. Time flies! I can’t even BEGIN to tell you how full my life is with this boy. He’s one of the greatest gifts we’ve ever been given.

Watching him develop has been incredible. He’s got Samson-like upper body strength and above average athletic ability. (He was slide tackling himself while we watched the World Cup, can sink heavy bean bags in the hole and can air kick a soccer ball on point EVERY. TiME). He’s a great dancer, funny, curious, a social butterfly (has he FaceTimed you yet?) sensitive, affectionate and might I add – extremely fearless and  independent.

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Every morning, we get our 10+ minutes of snuggles in. He crawls into my lap and we love on each other. I think it fills up the emotional tank for the day. After that, life can turn into a war zone, helmets included. (Thankful for my medical background!) Sometimes I think those few quiet minutes could be his apology in advance for the adventures that will transpire throughout the day. Either way, I’m blessed by those few minutes.  There’s way too many things that he does throughout the day to  bless me that I want to store up in my heart yet it’s already SO. FULL.

And does this boy LOVE his Daddy. When we watch church online, he’ll dance to the music and scream “DA-EEEE” every time the camera zooms in on Jonathan.  And scream his name when he gets home from work. Dance parties and walks around the block where we lose a toy down the sewer happen frequently. You can find him running around the house with a bat or chasing our dog with his bubble mower, reciting his alphabet. (Thank you, SuperWHY!, his speech has improved dramatically) Our living room has become an indoor soccer court, . It really is a wonderful life.

Joram is the best little boy. Never in a million years, could I imagine my life without him or forseen how awesome he would make motherhood to be.  We constantly pray for wisdom for this little guy as he grows, that he would be able to discern right from wrong at a young age and not get tripped up by silly things that can so easily entangle.  What a tremendous blessing he is!

Happy Birthday to my sweet boy, Joram, “The LoRd is Exalted.”

 

The baby without a due date…

Every baby has a due date… At least I thought.

I’ve don’t like paying attention to the due date because Babies. Do. what. THey. want.

However, I am at the point in this pregnancy that I literally d r e a m of delivering a babe, only to wake up still carrying a watermelon in the midsection.

In the first trimester, EDDs (Estimated Due Dates) are based off of the woman’s cycle. In the 2nd trimester, it’s all about genetics – how big/small your baby is, how fast they grow, etc. And the third tri, it’s a free-for-all, diet, exercise, etc.   All throughout this pregnancy, I had people coming up to me shocked at how small I was.”Is everything ok with the baby?!”- a question I heard often. I brought this up to my doc who informed me it’s a 3cm+/- scale that’s used to measure the babe. If I’m at the +or – 3cm mark, they start doing tests. For example, at 32 weeks gestation, a woman’s belly should measure 32cms.

For 4 consecutive appointments deep into my 3rd tri, I was consistently measuring -2cms small. The week of Jonathan’s New York trip, I got sick, puking sick. If I am dehydrated enough, I can throw myself into labor. Not cool. I was officially measuring 3cms too small. Time to start testing. I had just  switched practices at this point and there doesn’t seem to be any major concern. Should we question the accuracy of the EDD?- the original was set for July 14th.  So when is it? Gotta go back and find your first sonogram and medical files. All I know is that the eviction notice has been sent. There’s no room in the Schroer Inn and Womb Service will no longer be available. I think I’m uncomfortable to look at! Girl, you HUGE! haha

**Side note, Joram was almost 2 weeks “overdue”. I remember joking that he would get a spanking for every day he was late… I don’t think I ever capitalized on that one 🙂

I walked into my last appointment thinking I was already in the overcooked stage and said, “40+, feeling strong” to which my midwife replied, “39, all day long.” Wait, what?! I gotta spend another week in this body? That’s like turning the last corner of a marathon only to find out you have to run an extra 5K to the finish line.  I was getting rounder by the minute and sure enough, I had caught up to 39cms. Must’ve been the raw chocolate peanut butter protein balls I destroyed the last few weeks.

Sooo, either way, I’m a baby time bomb and he’ll come whenever he feels like it. As long as he makes his appearance before Christmas, I’m content. Jonathan has been awesome; we get into “Rapture-Mode” every night and make sure the house is in order and everything is as it should be.  I’m so thankful for those who have called or text with encouragement, prayer and support. We def feel the love! Keep you posted.

“The LoRd will perfect that which concerns me.” Psalm 138:8

In His Grip,

Amy

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A playlist to burn the house down…

IMG_0012This beauty is called Crown of Thorns. I love it. It’s a native to Madagascar and Thai growers believe that  more blooms means more luck. This succulent doesn’t like to be overwatered yet lately has been  thriving with all these summer storms. It felt like my day the on a past Sunday and I had to make a decision.

Not that my life has been as heavy as the weather lately but that day, I was undone. Let me explain:

My son just discovered markers last week. It was cute. He played with them for a few hours then realized that the caps can come off and had even more fun. I’m so THANKFUL for washable markers! My table, face and his clothes came back to their full glory before long.

But this day, as I walked out into my living room, one of my greatest fears came true. I physically felt my heart break like the first time I was hurt by a boy when I was 15.

A sharpie marker… my white couch…

Damage was done. Nothing I can do. I went to find my son who was on to the next thing, in the closet- discovered what glitter and craft paint can do to a carpet. It’s officially time to burn the house down.

Knowing that a toddler can’t associate punishment long after the action, I calmly brought my son out to the couch and said, “Que es esto? what is this?” To which he very proudly responded,” a ‘A!'” Yes, if you look closely, my son had permanently inscribed the first alphabet letter in my couch. He’s a genius…

Can you see the “A”??

I know it’s just “stuff”. But those craigslist couches cost more than that Sharpie.

So what am I gonna do? Crown of Thorns. Focus on the beauty OR the sharp, needle-like spindles that hurt to touch (or look at for that matter)

I had a choice that day, as do we all most days. I choose which way my heart will go, which appetite to feed, the negative or positive.

I started blasting worship music as it it poured down rain, had a good cry (overwhelmed that there will be TWO boys soon) and moved on. I love my life, my family, my son(s), my couch and most importantly, Jesus has pulled my life out of darkness and now I’m basking in His marvelous light. I have nothing to complain about. EVER.  Here’s a few songs I’ll pass on to encourage you for future reference:

01. Be Still My Soul- Out of Eden
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2. Moving Forward- Israel Houghton
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3. You Revive Me- Christy Nockels
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4. Our King Has Come- Elevation
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5. Awakening- Chris Tomlin
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6. I Will Exalt- Bethel Live featuring Amanda Faulk
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7. Beautiful Exchange- Hillsong
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8. Gloria- Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir (One of my faves, reminds me of Arlene)

09. Deeper-Hillsong United
10. Jesus’ Blood- Delirious

Jonathan came home and saw the damage. He just flipped cushions and switched things around. Problem solved. What a guy.

 

 “Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthymeditate on these things The things which you learned and received and heard and saw in me, these do, and the God of peace will be with you.” Phil 4:8-9

Peace and Sharpies,

Amy

“This sandwich is in mint condition.”

Jonathan has just returned from a week long stint on Long Island playing music and speaking to a youth camp at Island Christian Church and what a week it was!

He and the band left at 4am to catch their flight and *hopefully* the first train out to the city. Jonathan’s sister Becky was the shuttle, packing all five guys and their equipment in her car and get them where they needed to be. The guys realized that the train would be leaving at the exact time they would arrive at the station. Being the New Yorker at heart and not wanting to wait another two hours, Jonathan sprints out of the vehicle, guns blazing towards the train, yelling at the conductor to wait while the rest of these Southern boys are politely thanking Becky for the ride over. Becky knows what’s at stake and she’s yelling at them,”SHUT UP AND THANK ME LATER!  RUN!!!” Somehow, they all made it just before takeoff.

City Boys!

Jonathan was the official tour guide and these Florida boys were blistered up by the end of the day rockin’ the city with their cool band boots yet were beyond satisfied that they experienced New York at it’s finest. NY pizza and the famous Bacon, Egg and Cheese bagel with hashbrowns was on the menu and they enjoyed every minute of it. Central Park, Ground Zero, Manhattan, the works.

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Playing at Youth Week 2014

They rehearsed 5 hours on Saturday, were up early Sunday morning to play at the church and Jonathan had the opportunity to speak.  The congregation was amazed. This was the same Schroer-kid that was a trouble-maker years ago. Many, many people came up to him afterwards to hug him and even spoke of how much his mom, Arlene had impacted them. It has been 2 years since her passing and this was the first time they’ve been able to see Jonathan and tell him in person.

The week flew by! Becky and long time family friend Gina Lang kept up with me sending me photos and video clips as well as FaceTiming me live  (thank you LoRd for technology!) while the band played. I felt like I was there myself. Joram danced naked in the bathtub while we watched “Daaa-eee” play music from the iphone.

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Facetiming Daddy during band practice

After each evening session, the guys would hang til midnight or later playing sports with the youth. He said they became like family in that short week they were there. Jonathan said it was like two worlds colliding: His new life, the band and all these people he grew up with. For Becky, it was a dream come true. She’s been praying for Jonathan to come out and lead worship for years. She and her kids were there every second “stalking” Jonathan and helping out in any way they could. She was a HUGE support to me that week and blew me away with herinvolvement with the band and kids at Youth week.  I am so blessed by this family.

Youth Week 2014

 

The band returned Thursday morning and had a hard time saying goodbye. It was like that “mission-trip high” kinda week.  Jonathan said he and the band got to worship in a whole new way that he hasn’t experienced before. THe only minor setback was at 2am before their flight home, Jonathan was slamming some Swedish fish and suctioned out his crown from a root canal he had a few years ago. He’s fine now but I think he might lay off the Fish for awhile 🙂

We are blessed! What an incredible week!

In His Grip,

Amy

A weekend sermon…

This past weekend Pastor Eric talked about storms in life. And I don’t know how many sermons I’ve heard on storms so I tried to stay tuned for what God may be speaking to me for this particular weekend.

Jesus spoke to his disciples about getting to the other side of the Sea of Galilee after a long day. After Jesus fell asleep under the deck, the disciples encountered a significant storm. Being terrified, they woke Jesus up and cried,Don’t you care that we are about to drown?! And how many times has it seems that God has left us in the middle of our obedience to encounter a Category 5.

I journaled on the last painful trial I had been through and what I’ve learned from it.  In the last 3 years, everything has changed.  In 2011, my husband and I ventured out on unknown territory- the making of an original music CD. We felt like it was the direction that the LoRd was leading. We worked extra side jobs to raise money. During that time, Jonathan’s mom was diagnosed with Stage 4 Ovarian cancer.  I started full time nursing school almost the same week that a German moved in with us who was still in learning English.  We got robbed the $2,000 we saved for the CD. Cars broke down. Our computer blew up.  Nursing school had it’s unprofessional “politics” and dished out personal blows below the belt. A misunderstanding with a friend in ministry started an incredibly long and painful battle. Unforseen issues kept piling up with the recording of the CD. The band was discouraged and the project was hung up indefinitely. Jonathan and I were exhausted.  I got pregnant and was beginning to lose weight with all the sickness. My mother-in-law moved in with hospice right after Christmas. “LoRd, don’t you care that we’re drowning?!”

Two days into 2012, my mother-in-law passes away. The German found other living arrangements so we could grieve. I started to feel better. School eventually finished. The CD project miraculously was revived, mastered and produced. We welcomed our first son, Joram. We had so much support from friends and family.  It felt as if God had taken us to the other side of the shore. We made it through that storm.

After reviewing today’s sermon with my husband, tears just spilled down my face.  Arlene’s sickness laid a strong foundation for me but for my husband, it really shook him to the core. I felt like I was stronger afterwards but yet this situation with a friend in ministry absolutely crippled me.

“Even after a storm, the waves are still significantly rough.”
-Pastor Eric Ward

We haven’t given up on God. We love the LoRd. But do we take as many risks as we used to? Do we have as much faith as we once did? How will I respond to the next battle when I sometimes wonder if we’ve fully recovered? Obedience lead me to a season where I deeply questioned His character. Things didn’t turn out the way they should’ve. We remember Romans 8:28 but at times it seems like that’s just a church-y answer to deep pain.  In America, we like to have the endings the same: happy, healthy and better than ever. All is well that ends well.

But Jonathan reminded me that Jesus’s whole life goal was to be crucified. There’s nothing sexy about that. He laid down his life in the most gruesome, horrific way so that the price for my freedom could be paid. It’s nice to be acknowledged, supported, befriended.  But it says in Scripture that He was a man of many sorrows, stricken by grief and yet for the joy of it, went on ahead because he knew the cost of giving up was greater. And it also says throughout Scripture that He SEES, He HEARS, He KNOWS, He CARES… so all my questioning of if He’s paying attention to my drowning gets taken out to the trash. With that knowledge I capture those thoughts of doubt and charge into Him with my troubles (1Peter5:7). Deep down, I know one day, He’ll make all things right. Romans 8:28 really is one of His precious promises and He paid a high price to give it to me.

“Now no chastening seems to be joyful for the present, but painful; nevertheless, afterward it yields the peaceable fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.” Hebrews 12:11

I know I’m not the same person I was, for that I’m thankful!  That crazy season was like a bootcamp and I’m leaning on His promises more than ever before. I know that not everything turns out the way we expect them too but I can still trust Him who knows what’s around the corner.

“But may the God of all grace, who called us to His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you.  To Him be the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen.” 1 Peter 5:10

 Whatever season you may be in, may you trust Him through and through. He will, in all things, make good on every one of  His promises.

In His Grip,

Amy