Saturday, January 8, 2011

All Things New

Happy 2011!  2010 was an exciting, change-filled year for our family, and I hope it was for yours too.  When 2010 began, I never could have anticipated all that it would bring.  I was a terrible blogger in 2010....terrible.  Two kids, pastoring a church, family, friends, vacations, the loss of a dear friend, weddings, morning sickness (better yet, all day sickness), packing, moving, etc, etc - I just couldn't find the time to sit down and write about it all.  Looking back, I wish I had.  I know there are small moments I have forgotten, and cute things the kids did, my feelings, frustrations and joys about motherhood, an all of the inbetween that I would have liked to have documented.  So, here's my fresh new start, and quite a long review of what happened in the rest of 2011....

Wanna know what's new with the Brueseke's?  Kind of alot, actually....

Boden turned 3 in July.  Often, when talking to him you would think he was 9, he is so funny, logical, imaginitive, and bright.  He loves to color, is doing quite well at staying in the lines, and gets excited about doing "school work" - he has learned to recognize all of his letters and is now learning their sounds and learning to write them. 
He has an excellent memory - he has done great with memorizing any scripture I give him.  Earlier this summer he learned the entire 23rd Psalm in less that a week.  Mostly just by listening to me recite it to him while he played with toys.  This Christmas we taught him Luke 2:10-11.  Watch below for the clip:

Most of the time he is a delight - but that doesn't mean that strong will of his doesn't rear it's head once in awhile.  A rather common converstation with the strong willed Boden goes something like this:

Mama: "Boden, you can either take a nap in mamas bed, or in your bed today, but you ARE taking a nap.  You have the option, what do you choose?"

Boden: "Well, Mama....Actually....I don't wanna take a nap, Soooo, I can play in my room or watch cartoons...that's MY option."

It's also interesting as a parent, to have your child speak to you the way you speak to them.  Sometimes humorous, other times, downright scary to know that's what I sound like!

Miss Claire is now 14 months old!  She celebrated her 1st birthday on October 27.  We had a party with family the weekend before her actual birthday.  My sisters and I made a catepillar cake that coordinated with the birthday outfit I had so much fun making for her. 
She has been such a fun child - she started taking steps around 10.5- 11 months and she hasn't stopped since! When she's awake, she doesn't stop moving - in 14 months I think I've read her a total of 5 pages of a book while she was sitting on my lap! She loves to be up running around and exploring - and chasing her big brother, but when it's time to nap, there is rarely an arguement.  She lays down and is out for a few hrs twice a day.  And at night, just lay her down and she's out for at least 12 hrs.  She and Boden are like night and day in the sleeping aspect...I'm not sure he has EVER slept 12 hrs at night!
Claire had a lot of trouble with ear infections in her 2nd 6 months.  She had 5 ear infections throughout the year, and then starting in October, we just couldn't get rid of them.  She was on antibiotics continually for Oct and Nov and finally got tubes put in just before Christmas.  She has been much happier since.  She signs: eat, more, please, thank you, bye bye, sleep/night-night. She says: mama, dadda, ball, sometimes she says eat, and hi.  I think her speach was delayed a little by her constant clogged ears - we've noticed her really picking up more and following directions very well in the past month.  A couple weeks ago I asked if she needed to go potty and she turned and went straight for the bathroom and banged on the toilet.  I was so excited, thinking "this is going to be awesome! she'll potty train herself!" I got her all undressed, set her up on the potty, and what did she do? she flailed and screamed like I was pulling her leg off or something.  ah, well, at least she knows what I'm talking about, right?

Shortly after my last post of 2010 we had a whirlwind of life happen.... 

We took a family vacation with two other families to Destin, FL.  It was beautiful, fun and relaxing....for most of us.  Poor Michael was miserably sick the whole time.  He tried to have a good time, but just didn't feel good at all. 
Then in September, we made the decision to take a new position at a new church....all the way across the country!  Michael had been connected with the pastor of this church for several years, he had been one of Michael's professors at Regent University during his Masters Program (which he finished in Aug '10!!!! Yay Michael!) and they had gotten together whenever Michael was in the area.  This past summer, the opportunity arose for Michael to join Pastor Jim and the team at Western Branch Community Church, in Chesapeake, VA as the Discipleship Pastor.  After lots of prayer and discussions, we were confident that was what God was calling us to do.  While very exciting, it was also very scary.  We've both lived in the midwest our entire lives, and always relatively close to family.  This move would put us at least 16 hr drive from Michael's family and 22 from mine!  I've gotten used to being able to make the 6 hr drive from Missouri to NE to see my family with just me and the kids whenever Michael is out of town, or when family events are occuring and Michael can't get away, and had I definitely gotten used to Michael's mom watching the kids for me one day a week so they could get some "Bubbe" time while I got some "me" time.  We also love our church family in St Louis, and will really miss them all.  It was such a difficult decision to leave, but we had so much peace about the decision, we knew it was God.  And we knew that God would make it all work out.

Shortly after that decision was made, and we began preparing to move, we got another surprise we were most certainly not expecting!  Baby #3!!!  I remember very vividly having a phone conversation with my mom on Thursday.  Here's basically how it went:
Megan:  Mom, I've got some news!
Mom: You're Pregnant!!???!???
Megan: Are you crazy? we are getting ready to pick up and move across the country where we know no one.  I couldn't possibly also handle being pregnant through all that.  No, I'm not pregnant. If I were pregnant Mom, I imagine I'd be crying right now.
Mom: well, what's the news then?
Megan: I was just going to tell you we decided what dates we'll be visiting for Thanksgiving....

And, then...that night I didn't sleep at all! I have never had that happen, but it was so weird.  I got up and cleaned for a couple hrs, tried to sleep again, then got up and knit for a few hrs, and then read, and finally around 5 am I fell asleep.  Friday morning I felt so awful.  I assumed it was from not sleeping.  We went to the dentists office and I almost had to leave because I thought I was going to vomit from them smell.  I told Michael we needed to get a pregnancy test just to rule that out so I would feel better.  I remember the look on his face when I said that, it was like "Are you crazy?" haha.  So, later that afternoon, we sat on our bathroom floor staring at a positive pregnancy test - both  in complete shock! Thinking "Seriously, God? Did you not think we had enough going on right now?  How do you expect us to do this too?"  I didn't cry like I thought I would though - I was excited - even though I was shocked and completely freaked out - I was excited.  How could we not be?  Obviously, God knows what we don't know - and he's a much better judge of what I can handle than I am.

So began the awful "morning" sickness - which was actually mostly afternoon and evening sickness.  Which actually worked out rather well.  I survived the day until naptime with the kids, and then Michael would get home and take care of the kids and make dinner for them while I spent the evening in bed or vomiting.  It was pretty awful this time around.  I got weekly migraines through the first trimester too.  Not alot of fun - I'm SO glad that is behind me now. The 2nd trimester has been much better to me.

Then, in the end of September, we woke up in the middle of the night to a shocking phone call.  Our dear friend, Renee Ploen, had passed away suddenly.  Just sitting on the couch at home, her heart stopped.  She was just 56 yrs old.  Mike and Renee have been like family to us - Our friends, mentors, another set of parents.  I will never forget that night in the hospital or the days following.  Nor, will I ever forget Renee. I have never met anyone quite like her - she loved the Lord so much, and everyone who knew her, knew that.  She was so honest, always told you like it was, even if she knew you weren't going to like it.  And the way she did it was with such love, there was no way you could be mad at her.  I loved that about Renee.  She never tried to make me feel better by sugar coating things - if I was whining to her about something and I was wrong, she let me know it!  And man, when she out!!! She was a prayer warrier - especially when she was praying for her family.  Oh, and she was funny - I smile everytime I think about her, she always had me laughing when I was with her.  Espeically her famous Walmart parking lot story.  Those of you who know that story are laughing right now just thinking about it, aren't you?  I miss Renee so much.  She taught me a lot about marriage, life, family, and being a pastors wife.  Renee's death caused me to examine my life and really think about how I spend my time and what is really important in life.  I am so thankful that God brought the Ploen's into our life when He did.  This is one of my favorite pictures of Renee because it is exactly how I remember her - always laughing and so full of life :

At the beginning of November, we began our "family tour."  Michael finished up his position at Destiny Church and we decided to wait to move until after the holidays.  We rented out our house to a lovely family, had movers pack most of our stuff and haul it to storage until we have it moved to Virginia, and moved to Sullivan, making Michael's mom and step-dad's house home base giving us the opportunity to spend time with Michael's family in the area.  We also made a weekend trip to Branson and Silver Dollar City with Michael's dad and Rocky, spent a couple weeks with my family in Nebraska around Thanksgiving, a trip to New York City with Michael's dad & his new wife, Rocky, another trip to Nebraska to celebrate Christmas and also my cousin's wedding, then back to Missouri for Christmas...and then packed up everything for the road trip to Virginia!  (There's so many pictures from all of these, I'm not going to try to upload them all here - but I do have a lot of them posted on Facebook, and will be posting many more in the next day or two, so I would love for you to check them out over there.)

Those two months were quite challenging for us to be always living out of suitcases, in someone elses home, and our kids totally off-routine....but, I wouldn't change it.  I'm so thankful to have gotten to spend so much time with family and friends before we left.  Saying goodbye was hard, but we are excited about what God has planned for us in this next season.

So, Here we are in our new home, Chesapeake, Virginia!  It was a long 2 day road trip to get here, but the kids were awesome.  They may have watched more cartoons in those 2 days than they usually do in 2 weeks, but hey, we do what we have to do to survive, right?  We are still living out of suitcases (sort of) since our moving truck is a *little* delayed, and we are still living in someone elses home (which I cannot complain a bit about, we are so blessed to have been provided with our own semi-apartment area where the kids have their own space to play) until we find our own place, but we ARE working on getting into a routine!

Michael is excited to jump in to his new role at the church, and we are both excited about meeting new friends and getting to know our new church family.  Excited to find out if our new addition will be a little brother or a little sister (which we will hopefully be finding out VERY soon), excited to find a new home for our family (that will hopefully be big enough for lots of visitors!) and excited for the weather to warm up so we can spend a little time at the nearby beach!  We are EXCITED about all the new things to come in 2011!


**The family pictures you see here in this post and on my new header were taken by my beautiful friend and amazing photographer, Heidi Keene. She did an amazing job even though Claire refused to crack a single smile the entire time (turns out she wasn't feeling well and she spiked a fever that evening). Check her work out at and if you are in Nebraska - I highly recommend her!!!


Amanda said...

Congratulations on #3!!

I hope the adjustment of being away from family goes well. The first year in FL was the hardest for me. It's getting easier and starting to feel more like home as I meet more people.

And when I have a tough day, I just remember the beach is just 10 minutes away!

Scott and Steph Wenz said...

Congrats on #3! You have been through all of that and still found time to update the blog! Way to go! Your pictures are beautiful and so is your family. Will have to check out your photographer! Also, where did you find your blog template or did you create yourself?

Megan Brueseke said...

Thank you both!

Steph- the header I created in photoshop and then uploaded to blogger as one photo. The background and template are just from general blogger options.