Saturday, December 31, 2011

2011 in review!

If I were to type a "Christmas" letter, this is what it would say!

This past year has been one full of excitement!

First we welcomed Carl Victor into the world on Jan. 10th.  He was born at 11:33 PM and weighed in at 7 lbs. 1 oz. and was 20 inches long..

About a month and half later, March 5, Josiah's sister, Lydia got married to Douglas Caudill!  They are now expecting a little one almost any time now!

Doug and Lydia's wedding pictures!

In May Josiah's dad had a heart attack.  But praise God that he got the help he needed and at the right time so he is still with us.

A couple weeks later (May 28) Josiah's brother Noah got married to Mary June Velie. Josiah was a usher and he had to wear a suit and tie.  I think he look pretty nice in it.  Here is a picture that Josiah's aunt took of us.
They are also expecting a little one in April 2012.  

Noah and Mary's wedding pics!

In the beginning of August we went to North Dakota to help Josiah's parent's fix up their farm house that they had just moved into!  We really enjoyed it there-the quiet was the one thing that stood out to me.  I guess living in the city I am used to noise all the time.  It was literally a breath of fresh air to be out in the country for days and not hear the constant hum of cars going by.

Our North Dakota pictures!

On September 6, my sister Alicia and her husband Rick welcomed Lillian Ruth Stelling into this world!

Lillian Ruth Stelling

And at the end of Sept. Josiah enlisted in the National Guard.  He leaves in just a few days for OSUT for 4 months.  We are really going to miss him, but we are also happy that he can do this as it was his childhood dream to be a solider.  We know that we will have some rough days without him, but we will make the most of it and keep busy and before we know it, we will be going to go pick him up!  We are already looking forward to that day, and we have a countdown notebook that we made where we rip out one page a day with the numbers of days on it until we get to see him again!  We are proud of him!

We had 2 Thanksgiving meals this year.  One at my Dad and Mom's.  And then Josiah's parents came from North Dakota and all the Brainard's had a meal together.  Both were really good times.

Thanksgiving at Whittakers

We went over to my sister Alicia's for Christmas this year and we all had a really good time.


God blessed us richly this year and 2012 promises to be a busy also with Josiah going to Basic Training, and also with 2 little bundles of joy expected, plus the unknown.  I look forward to the coming year and pray that God draws us all closer to him and that we glorify Him all that we do.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

We are still alive!

Just a quick post to let you all know that we are all well.  Life has just been pretty crazy lately.  I have actually start quite a few posts, but not finished them yet.  I plan to though.  It is hard to find time to sit and type out every thing that I want to when I have 3 little ones in the house.

Last Thursday I had the privilege of going to my sister Esther's house and baking with her and my sister Abby for a bake sale that she (Esther) was having to raise money for adoption costs.

Saturday was my sister-in-law Lydia's baby shower.  We had a great time and we are getting more and more excited.  I cannot wait to meet my newest niece or nephew.  It will the first one for me on the Brainard side.

Sunday was Family Day at RSP for the National Guard.  It was great meeting every one that Josiah talks about all the time and watching him do his PT.  I took Carl with and left Ivan and Ursula with Rachel.  As usual every one fell in love with Carl.

Last night our church had a special meeting about the Haiti trip that a group of people from our church and a couple others went on in November.  That was a great reminder to me as to how much we have here in America, but yet we take it for granted.

Tonight is Josiah's work Christmas party.  We are leaving the kids at Grandpa Dale and Grandma Jackie's house.

I have been busy thinking about projects for the kids and I to do while Josiah is gone.  I want to keep busy so that I do not miss him so much.

It is hard to believe that he is leaving so soon.  Some days I feel like I will be just fine when we watch him leave the airport, and other days I feel like I am going to be an emotional wreck.  But I know that God is with us and he will be with my sweetheart and we will be looking forward to the day in April when we will be reunited.

Well, I must run as my little ones are waking up and I need to get them ready to go to my parents' house.

God bless!!!

Friday, October 21, 2011

My Prayer

Today as I was sitting and playing the piano I came across this hymn and the words just hit me like a hammer and as I played and sang I could not help from crying.

Spirit of God, Descend Upon My Heart

Spirit of God, descend upon my heart;
Wean it from earth, through all its pulses move;
Stoop to my weakness, mighty as Thou art,
And make me love Thee as I ought to love.

Hast Thou not bid us love Thee, God and King?
All, all Thine own, soul, heart and strength and mind;
I see Thy cross--there teach my heart to cling:
O let me seek Thee, and O let me find.

Teach me to feel that Thou art always nigh;
Teach me the struggles of the soul to bear,
To check the rising doubt, the rebel sigh;
Teach me the patience of unanswered prayer.

Teach me to love Thee as Thine angels love,
One holy passion filling all my frame;
The baptism of the heav'n descended Dove,
My heart an altar, and Thy love the flame.

Monday, October 17, 2011

First Drill/RSP

Well, Josiah had his first drill (or as they call it right now, RSP) this weekend.  And he loved it.  It was certainly different to see my husband come home in a military uniform.  It will take a while for me to get used to seeing him in it.  The kids think it is great, and they talk about the army and military all the time now.

For those of you who care here is video of what Josiah will be doing in the National Guard

When he has his December drill they have family day, and I get to go and spend the day with him.  I am pretty excited because I love seeing what Josiah is doing and what the places look like where he is.

Church was a bit of a challenge by myself with the 3 kids, but nothing that I cannot handle.  We definitely have work to do, but I found out that I can do it and it is not so bad.

I praise God that he has been changing my attitude about Josiah joining the National Guard.  Sure I know it will not be easy, but I am actually looking forward to the challenge, and I just want to please God in all I do.  I realize that I am responsible for myself and how I act, and I want to please God even if I am in a situation that is far from easy.  I do not want to have any regrets.

I am starting to get more excited about all of this, not to say that I do not still have moments of not liking it.

I just want to say thank you to all the military wives out there.  I am beginning to realize the sacrifices that they have to make are huge and they have to be pretty unselfish.  Thank you.

God bless!!

Friday, September 23, 2011


These touched my heart this morning and thought I would share it with you all.  May be it will be an encouragement to someone somewhere!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

"Sing, O barren." --Isaiah 54:1

  Though we have brought forth some fruit unto Christ, and have a joyful hope that we are "plants of His own right hand planting," yet there are times when we feel very barren.  Prayer is lifeless, love is cold, faith is weak, each grace in the garden of our heart languishes and  droops.  We are like flowers in the hot sun, requiring the refreshing shower.  In such a condition what are we to do?  The text is addressed to us in just such a state.  "Sing, O barren, break forth and cry aloud."  But what can I sing about?  I cannot talk about the present, and even the past looks full of barrenness.  Ah! I can sing of Jesus Christ.  I can talk of visits which the Redeemer has aforetimes paid to me; or if not of these, I can magnify the great love where with He loved His people when He came from the heights of heaven for their redemption.  I will go to the cross again.  Come, my soul, heavy laden thou wast one, and thou didst lose thy burden there.  Go to Calvary again.  Perhaps that very cross which gave thee life may give thee fruitfulness.  What is my bareness?  It is the platform for His fruit-creating power.  What is my desolation?  It is the black setting for the sapphire of His everlasting love.  I will go in poverty, I will go in helplessness, I will go in all my shame, and back-sliding, I will tell Him that I am still His child, and in confidence in His faithful heart, even I, the barren one, will sing and cry aloud.
  Sing, believer, for it will cheer thine own heart, and the hearts of other desolate ones.  Sing on, for now that thou art really ashamed of being barren, thou wilt be fruitful soon; now that God makes thee loath to be without fruit He will soon cover thee with clusters.  The experience of our barrenness is painful, but the Lord's visitations are delightful.  A sense of our own poverty drives us to Christ, and that is where we need to be, for in Him is our fruit found.  --C. H. Spurgeon

Exciting NEWS!!

Well, Josiah got word from his recruiter yesterday and she said that the waiver was approved and he is going down to MEPS on Friday to get sworn in!  So happy for him.

I am still struggling with all this.  You could pray for me in this area.  As a wife I want to be supportive of any decisions that my hubby makes (in the case that the decision is not sinful).  And I would like to be excited,  but sometimes I am not, and that makes it hard for him.  I love him and I want him to be proud of me and I do not want to make his life hard for him.  I am happy for him to be a solider, but it is the going away for so long that I have a hard time with.

Monday, September 19, 2011


Josiah is not in the National Guard yet as he is waiting for a dependency waiver to be approved.  It has been almost 4 weeks since it got submitted.  You could pray for him.  He is getting restless about it.  Just pray that God's will be done.

In other news, our little girl, Ursula Joy, turned 3 yesterday.

Here are pictures so you can see how much she has grown up.

Josiah holding her an hour after she was born.

Here she is 9 months old.

Here she is at 1 year.

Here she is on her 2nd birthday!

Here she is at 2 1/2, holding her new brother, Carl!

And here she is at three!!

I cannot believe that my precious little Ursie Joy (as we like to call her) is already three.  I pray that she  grows up to be a godly woman who loves God, desires to do His will.  I love you, my little girl. more than you can ever know.  You so far are my only girl and you hold a very special place in my heart.  I look forward to training you up to be a happy and joyful young lady!  God bless you!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

I'm a auntie again.

My sister Alicia and her husband Rick, had their little girl on Sept. 6. Her name is Lillian Ruth Stelling.  She was 7 lbs. 2 oz. and 19 in. long

Here is a link to a picture of the happy family!

I have not gotten to see her in person yet, but, Lord willing we are going over on Sunday after church to see them.  I cannot wait!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Starting out!

I have wanted to start a blog for a long time, but I have such a hard time explaining myself sometimes, that I feared people would not understand me. But now I have decided to just do it and hope that my readers can understand me.

Josiah is in the process of joining the National Guard. I am excited, but always a bit scared. Scared because "boot camp" is 4 months long, and it is in MO. I know I will be able to do it, but right now I cannot imagine him being gone for 4 months and having the total responsibility of our 3 little ones. I pray that God will help me. I have family here that I know will support me. I am also scared that he will get deployed, and I can hardly stand the thought of it. I know that there are many wives out there that have done, and I am SO proud of them. It is harder then I thought it would be.

That is all for now. My little ones are waking up and I have much to do as usual.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Exceeding great and precious promises. 2 Peter 1:4

If you would know experimentally the preciousness of the promises, and enjoy them in you own heart, meditate much upon them. There are promises which are like grapes in the wine-press; if you will tread them the juice will flow. Thinking over the hallowed words will often be the prelude to their fulfilment. While you are musing upon them, the boon which you are seeking will insensibly come to you. Many a Christian who has thirsted for the promise has found the favour which it ensured gently distilling into his soul even while he has been considering the divine record; and he has rejoiced that ever he was led to lay the promise near his heart.

But besides meditating upon the promises, seeking in thy soul to receive them as being the very words of God. Speak to thy soul thus, "If I were dealing with a man's promise, I should carefully consider the ability and the character of the man who had convenanted with me. So with the promise of God; my eye must not be so much fixed upon the greatness of the mercy--that may stagger me; as upon the greatness of the promiser--that will cheer me. My soul, it is God, even thy God, God that cannot lie, who speaks to thee. This word of His which thou are now considering is as true as His own existence. He is a God unchangeable. He has not altered the thing which has gone out of His mouth, nor called back one single consolatory sentence. Nor doth he lack any power; it is the God that made the heavens and the earth who has spoken thus. Nor can he fail in wisdom as to the time when he will bestow the favours, for He knoweth when it is best to give and when better to withhold. Therefore, seeing that is is the word of a God so true, so immutable, so powerful, so wise, I will and must believe the promise." If we thus meditate upon the promises, and consider the Promiser, we shall experience their sweetness, and obtain their fulfilment.

C. H. Spurgeon

This blessed me so much, so I wanted to share it with you and and hope it blesses you as much as it did me.

Welcome to our world!

Just thought it would be cool to start a little blog to let you all get a glimpse into our crazy home. Some things in our life are about to change a lot and I want to share the journey with you all!
God bless