Thursday, April 24, 2008

Guess what we heard?!?!?!

Today Daniel and I went to see my midwife. Yes, midwife...we're having a baby!! And today, for the very first time, we heard baby Audi's heartbeat. I'm 12 weeks and 4 days today. The little one is due November 3.

You may also know that we are traveling to Nepal in a few weeks. And, yes, we are still going. My midwife has given me the green light and we've also gotten the green light from an American doctor who is friends with the folks we know in Nepal. She knows exactly what we'll be doing on our trek in the Himalayas and has lived and practiced medicine in the country for several years.

This baby already has such a blessing over his/her life. The doctors have not only said it will be okay for me and the baby to be in the Himalayas at 15, 16, and 17 weeks of pregnancy, they've actually said the timing is PERFECT! I love that about God - His perfect timing. He knew that this trip was planned. And He knew that little baby would be conceived at the perfect time to allow for us to go on this last trip together overseas before our family expands. Sure, we'll continue to travel after the expansion, but this will be our last trip for a while, just the two of us (technically speaking ;-))

Another amazing thing about baby Audi. Six people have had dreams about the baby, three of them being refugees that I tutor. I'll start with the one that came last summer - almost a year ago.

-I was tutoring Marian Omar and she said to me, "Miss," (they all call me and all other women 'Miss' rather than 'Mrs.') Anyhow, she said, "Miss, I dream about you last night. You have 2 babies. What do you call that? Twins?" "Yes!" I told her, but told her we weren't pregnant and definintely I wasn't having twins. :-)

The next three dreams were shared with us during the week before baby Audi was conceived.

-I called Habiba Omar, Marian's sister, to say hello. I don't tutor her anymore. As soon as she heard it was my voice on the other end of the phone, she said, "Miss, are you calling from the hospital? I dream you have baby girl and call me from the hospital. You say, 'Come, Habiba, see my baby girl!'" I told her we weren't pregnant and kind of laughed. However, I saw my small group leader, Nikki, the following night and she told me she had something to tell me.

-Nikki told me that she had three dreams about me in one night...and it was Friday night, the same night that Habiba dreamed I was pregnant. In all three dreams, she dreamed that I was pregnant!

-That same week, I was at Catholic Charities and a co-worker of mine and Daniel's came up to me and said, "Kim, I had this dream about you this week and you were pregnant. You had this cute little pregnant belly!"

We thought it was interesting that three people had dreams about me being pregnant, all in the same week, but we actually thought it was the Lord just encouraging me. I tend to be a hypochondriac and would occasionally say that maybe I couldn't get pregnant. And I was sad about the 'what if'. So, I believed God was just saying through those people's dreams that I would be able to bear children. End of story.

Well, 5 weeks later, I took a pregnancy test and....the results were:

After we began telling friends about the baby, we heard of two other dreams people had about the baby.

-Sakina, a Congolese refugee who is a strong believer and is one of my students, replied to my telling her that we are having a baby with, "Miss, I know. I dream you born baby boy."

-Izehi, a dear friend who now lives in Turkey, upon hearing our news told me that before she moved to Turkey over a year ago, she had a dream that Daniel and I would, in fact, not be moving to Turkey with her and our other friends who moved there, and she also dreamed that we were expecting a baby!

It's really so sweet to hear that the Lord is speaking to dear friends and sweet refugee students about our child. We are humbled and encouraged. We believe the Lord has divine plans for this child!

baby Audi at 6 weeks, 4 days

When we return from Nepal, we'll have another sonogram and find out if baby Audi will be a 'he' or a 'she'!

Friday, April 18, 2008

Tour de Cafe

Three years ago at Catholic Charities' annual 'Tour de Cafe' I had just started volunteering with an ESL class and walked up the stairs with two little African children from the ESL class in either hand. Little beknownst to me, I would meet the man who would become my husband that night, and his initial attraction to me would be my apparent love for internationals. You can read here for the rest of this story under the "How We Met" section of our "KNOT" page.

The 'Tour de Cafe' has been a special event for the past two years because of that. However, not only is it special because it's the place where I met Daniel, it's special because it's the night when we at Catholic Charities celebrate refugees by having a coffee, tea, and treat tasting of food from all over the world as well as music and art presented by the refugees. This man is a former ESL student of mine and I currently tutor his son. Daniel is his employment case manager. He is from Burma and of the Karen people group. He is a phenomenal artist. Here are some samples of his paintings.I also tutor four of the kids in the this family. The father, grandmother, and baby stayed home this night. There are 10 people living in a four bedroom apartment - grandmother, parents, and seven children. Can you imagine? They are such a sweet family with hearts that love the Lord. During Christmas Catholic Charities gives Christmas gifts to our families through Toys for Tots and private donors. I was teaching ESL to these parents at the time and got to deliver their Christmas gifts. The oldest daughter wrote me the sweetest letter thanking me for the gifts and speaking blessing over me from a passage in Psalm 12. So sweet!

Saturday, April 05, 2008

Easter Sunday at the Audi household

He is risen! Hallelujah, Jesus Christ is risen indeed! We celebrate His victory over death and His coming forth from the grave. And what better way to celebrate life than to sow new life into the ground!
Daniel and I spent Easter Sunday afternoon together planting flowers in the front bed at our house. We planted gerbers and petunias and after weeding the flower bed we saw that some of the gladialas we planted last year were peeking through the soil again, ready to grow into beautiful blooms again this year.

Have you ever thought about the miracle of growth - human life? trees? plants? flowers? We transplanted some of the flowers, but we also planted seeds for morning glories and moon flowers and zinnias. I said to Daniel, "Isn't it amazing that water and good soil will make this seed sprout and a beautiful flower will come fort from the dirt?" Amazing. God's design and order are absolutely amazing!

purple petunias

pink gerbers

the front flower bed

Easter traditions

I think I've reverted back to being a child...or, maybe I never grew out of being one. Either way, I still enjoy painting Easter eggs and going on Easter egg hunts and all of the fun traditions of Easter weekend. Of course, I know the weeekend is really about celebrating Jesus. And we also did that!

Traditionally my family has a big get-together in Ruston on Easter weekend, but Daniel and I had decided that we'd done enough traveling from January to the beginning of March that we didn't think returning to Ruston for Easter would prove to be restful for us. So, we forfeited the Easter egg hunt and picnic at Uncle Sidney's and enjoyed a long, relaxing 4-day weekend here in Fort Worth. Part of that weekend included having a co-worker and her husband over for lunch on Saturday.

Daniel and I had been wanting to invite Khadra and her husband over for a while and finally got around to making the time to do it. It just so happened to be Easter weekend. We had never met Khadra's husband before and were looking forward to meeting him. He is Somali but grew up in Iraq and also lived in Germany for quite some time. Boy did he have stories to tell. Khadra had told me that he loves traditions and cultures, so we thought that we'd celebrate some Easter traditions with them during their visit.

After our picnic on the blanket outside Khadra and I came inside to prepare the eggs for dying, and the boys stayed outside and Daniel learned much about Mahmoud as he told him stories of his life in Iraq and in Germany. Then, we took turns coloring the eggs with a clear crayon and dying them. Mahmoud suggested to put them back in the carton in the shape of a cross since we were celebrating Easter - nice cross, huh? Then Mahmoud suggested that we hide the eggs for each other and have a mini-egg hunt. So Daniel and I hid some eggs and Khadra and Mahmoud found them. Then, they returned the favor for us. Don't we know how to have fun!?!?!!?