March 2008


Okay, so I’m really, REALLY wishy-washy.  I’ve changed my presentation once again.  Although the last presentation was practical, in that it left a lot of room for pictures and writing, it didn’t satisfy my need for “cute.”  So, my practical side looses again.  My husband isn’t surprised. 🙂

Speaking of my husband, three years ago this week is when he and I were courting.  Nowadays, when I step outside, the spring air sweeps me back to those first glorious moments of being in love.  It’s amazing how scent has the ability to flood my mind with memory.

I am still in awe that God was pleased to have us be husband and wife.  He said “yes” to what I had told myself “no” a hundred times.  Not only did he allow our marriage, but he blessed it and kindly gave it to us. 

He has used our marriage as a tool in both of our sanctification.  What a joy it is to live together as joint heirs of his grace!  How we rejoice in this estate and praise God for such a perfect gift.

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Hi everyone!  We arrived home from Moscow on Monday afternoon as planned.  What a wonderful trip we had.  Jonathan and Rayia were great hosts, and created a fun, encouraging vacation for us.  We especially enjoyed spending Resurrection Day with them.  As Christians, Resurrection Day really should be the most glorious of all the holidays we celebrate.  Christ’s birth was an important event; but without his resurrection, we would have no hope.  Praise the Lord for all that was accomplished when Jesus rose from the tomb.  Thank-you Soderbergs for all the wonderful ideas you gave us for making this holiday the most joyous day on our calendar.  And thanks for such a great time with you all! 

On our way to Idaho, we stopped in Plains to visit Grandma Mallery.  We had breakfast with her at The Butcher’s Nook and enjoyed a lovely visit.  We are always so blessed by our times with Grandma.  “Rejoice in the Lord always” is a command she diligently keeps.  What a privilege it is to be her grandchildren.  Here’s a picture of her singing “Jesus Loves Me” to Remember:

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During our stay in Idaho, Honour enjoyed getting to know his cousins, Titus (4) and Adeline (2).  Here are pictures of them during Titus’ birthday party:

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And here’s Sissy with Uncle Jonathan:

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I should have gotten a lot more pictures; but I’m really not the greatest when it comes to photography.  With time, I hope to get better at it.

Now that we’re back in Montana, we have started the process of building our house!  Today, Ransom met with someone from Flathead Electric about getting electricity to the property.  On his next set of days off, he plans to dig the foundation, as well as the trenches (is that what you call them?) for the electrical and water lines. 

Those of you who have been around construction for years will laugh at my lack of knowledge when it comes to correct building terms.  In fact, you’ll laugh at my ignorance regarding the whole building process in general.  I really know nothing about it; I’m glad my husband does!  The next few years will provide quite the education for me.

I should close; the babies are asleep and I should be too.  We love you all!

-JESSICA

 PS  Yes, I changed my presentation AGAIN.  Sorry for being so wishy-washy.  I like this presentation because it’s nice and wide, allowing more space for pictures.  And, speaking of pictures, I figured out why some of you haven’t been able to view them.  I won’t bore you with details, but you might want to look at older posts where you weren’t able to see pictures, ’cause you should be able to see them now. 🙂

Wanted to let everyone know that we’ll be out of town for a few days, so I won’t be writing any new posts for a while.  We’re going to visit Ransom’s sister’s family in Idaho.  We’ll be arriving home Monday afternoon.  After we get home, I’m sure I’ll have lots of fun pictures to share with y’all.

Have a blessed Resurrection Sunday; praise the Lord for the victory we have in Christ Jesus!

-JESSICA

 PS  I couldn’t figure out how to get the time corrected, so I just eliminated it all together.

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YES!  After more than an hour of trying to figure this out, I think I’ve successfully put a picture of my son in this post!  Here’s Honour, saying “hi” to everyone.  When we tell him to smile, this is the expression we get.  Pretty cute, huh?  And, yes, he inherited his dad’s unruly hair.  Let’s see if I can get a picture of his sister on here too…

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This is Remember Elizabeth.  Isn’t she beautiful?  She’s so expressive, making it lots of fun to take pictures of her.  Let’s try one more…

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Here they are together.  Honour was very insistent that she needed her pacifier; but Sissy seemed to think otherwise.  What a great smirk on her face!

Yes, I decided to change my blog’s presentation.  Just thought it looked more “me.”

And by the way, the time is not showing accurately on these posts.  Thankfully, the date is.  I’ll see what I can do about getting the time corrected.  Thanks for everyone’s patience! 

-JESSICA 

Last week, my grandma passed away.  The Saturday before she died, I went to my grandparents’ house along with my husband, children, parents and siblings.  I stayed there with my babies the next three nights and three days.  I was was by her side when the Lord took her home, along with my son, mother, grandpa and aunt; we sang hymns to her as she left.  We had finished the fourth verse of “Nearer My God to Thee” when she took her last breath.  With tears flowing, my mother and I sang the last verse:

“Or if on joyful wing, cleaving the sky,/ Sun, moon, and stars forgot, upward I fly;

“Still all my song shall be, Nearer, my God, to Thee,/ Nearer my God, to Thee, Nearer to Thee!”

Her burial was on Wednesday, March 5.  The following Saturday, March 8, there was a beautiful memorial service held at Grace Church in Kalispell.  I was privileged to write the eulogy for this event.  I’ve posted it here as a tribute to the woman she was and a testimony of God’s grace.

-JESSICA

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On Tuesday, March 4, 2008 at 7:12 AM, Edith “June” Schmid left this world and was ushered into the presence of the Lord.  She passed away peacefully, while surrounded by her family.  She is no longer inhibited by an earthly body, but is free and rejoicing in her heavenly home.  Her family is grateful to God for the precious gift she was to them as a sister, aunt, wife, mother, grandmother and great-grandmother.

June was born on June 30, 1935 to Steven and Marian Reba Ellis in Parks, Nebraska.  She was the ninth of twelve children.  Her childhood home had a great influence upon her.  Her parents were sturdy and resourceful, qualities necessary to raising a large family during the Depression.  June was particularly close to her mother, and learned from her example what it practically meant to be dedicated, loyal and unconditionally loving toward one’s family.  She attended Parks High School; she especially enjoyed history and language arts.  She graduated in 1953 and began working as a telephone operator as well as a carhop at Mac’s Drive-in.

 In the neighboring town of McCook, there lived a young man by the name of Wayne Schmid.  He and June would see each other at high school basketeball games.  He was a handsome fellow who rode a Harley; she, a dainty yet energetic cheerleader.  They began dating in January, 1955 and were married on August 20 of the same year.  Before their first child was born, June worked as a clerk at the Hitchcock County Treasurer’s office.

On September 14, 1959, Wayne and June were blessed with their first daughter, Paula Sue.  Thus began June’s career as a mother, which was the defining occupation of her life.  Little did she know at that time how many more babies hse would be caring for in the future, once again as a mother as well as a grandmother and great-grandmother.

 In 1960 the Schmid family moved from Nebraska to Los Gatos, California where they lived for the next forty years.  Their second daughter, Tracy Ann was born July 2, 1963.  During her girls’ growing up years, June was an examplary homemaker, honing her domestic skills to a “T.”  Dinner was always delicious and on time; the laundry was always pressed and folded; her house was the picture of order and beauty.

Not only was she dedicated to her family, but to her friends as well.  She made those she met feel at ease and was a gracious hostess.  You would never go to the Schmid home without being offered something to eat as well as receiving a healthy dose of conversation.

When June was sixteen, she attended a revival meeting in Parks, Nebraska where she heard the Gospel and accepted Jesus Christ as her Savior.  In 1980, the Schmids began attending Los Gatos Christian Church, and it was here that June was baptized.  In this Gospel-centered environment, where the Word of God was preached faithfully, she began to grow spiritually.

In the mid-1980’s both Paula and Tracy were married and soon, June was a grandma.  Suddenly, life was all about this new role.  If she wasn’t with her family, she was busy doing something for them.  June especially loved preparing dinners for family gatherings and shopping for clothing for the grandchildren.  If one of the daughters was having a baby, she was the first to assist with preparations for the new arrival.  Anytime either of her girls had any type of emergency she and Wayne would drop everything and be there for them.  They were also present in the day-to-day lives of their family, helping in the little ways as much as in the big ways.  Their utter selflessness and total dedication to their children and grandchildren has been a source of inspiration to all who knew them.

When both their daughters’ families moved to the Flathead Valley in 1998, Wayne and June didn’t give a second thought about following them.  Although Montana, with its legendary winters, was not the first place they would have chosen, it was where their ten grandchildren were, and that was all the reason they needed for moving.  The next ten years would be much the same as the previous years had been, full of family gatherings, helping their daughters in times of calm and crisis and being there at anytime for anyone of the grandchildren.

2005 was marked by events of joy as well as sorrow.  In July, Wayne and June’s eldest granddaughter was married; in the fall, it became apparent that June had ALS.  The doctors estimated she had, at best, a year to live.  In God’s mercy, he gave her more than twice that amount of time.

As the disease progressed, and June’s body became weaker, ehr inner man was strengthened.  She came to understand more fully what a loving and gracious God she served.  She and Wayne began attending Grace Church in Kalispell, where the preaching of the Word and the love of her brothers and sisters in Christ upheld her during her physical struggle.  Even in her weakened state, June continued serving her family and friends as long as she was able; and when she could no longer serve with her hands, she served with her smile.

In 2006, Wayne and June enjoyed traveling to Arizona in their RV with their dear friends, the Askvigs.  They traveled to Nebraska as well, accompanied by their children and grandchildren, to attend June’s family reunion.  In September, their first great-grandchild arrived.

By May of 2007, a second granddaughter was engaged, and a second great-grandchild was on the way.  Although she no longer could communicate verbally, June’s joyful countenance said more than words.  She loved being surrounded by her family, and relished the visits her friends paid her as it became more difficult for her to visit them.

Throughout June’s illness, Wayne was her constant caregiver and companion.  He consistently demonstrated Christ’s love to her and June was so grateful to him.  His example of loyalty in the midst of hardship is a legacy to his family.

June’s life was indeed a life well spent.  She is a testimony of the grace of God.  She impacted the lives of her children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren in an eternal way.  Our prayer now is that we would be faithful, and follow in her footsteps.  We look forward to seeing her again in the presence of the Lord.

 

My first post on this blog…it seems I should say something momentous.  But, I’m afraid life is rather “non-momentous” at our house just now.  Ransom is working the night shift at the jail, Honour is sleeping soundly and Remember is laying contentedly in her cradle.  I can hear an occasional “thud” from the crew upstairs; I happen to know they’re watching the old, animated Charlotte’s Web.  But other than that, all I can hear is the tapping of my fingers on the keypad and my little girl’s soft breathing. 

Actually, from another standpoint, this evening is very momentous…BOTH MY BABIES ARE ASLEEP!  YAHOO!  This usually only happens for fleeting, half-hour intervals during the day.  Then my attitude is, “Quick!  Get as much done as possible!”  Oh, well.  The life of a mama with a toddler and a newborn.

Although I am busy, I simply love having two children.  When Remember was born on Christmas Day, life changed dramatically, but in a wonderful way.  Yes, I have very little discretionary time, and when I do, I usually want to sleep.  But I am so grateful for my babies.  I am overwhelmed that God has seen fit to bless me with two already.  I know I am unworthy of such precious gifts and can only wonder at his goodness to me.

We all have colds just now.  Poor little Remember has a raspy cough.  She has been very happy in spite of it though and delights us with her smiles and coos.  She’s been trying very hard to “talk” to us.  She’s definitely a female and wants to start communicating!

Honour has discovered he can make me laugh.  Certain looks, certain tones just tickle me and sometimes he uses his antics to his advantage, such as when he’s in trouble.  He seems to think, “If I can just get Mama to laugh, maybe she won’t discipline me!”  I’m sorry to say, sometimes it works!  It’s amazing how clever an eighteen-month-old is.  He’s such a great little guy and really is very obedient.  Right now, we’re working on following instruction with a cheerful attitude…both of us.

Ransom is eager to begin work on our house in April.  He recently filled out an application for an electrical permit and has been creating a building schedule to help him keep within his desired time table for completion.  We’re excited and sobered by this step at the same time.  It will be wonderful having our own house in a few years, but the process of getting there is rather daunting.  We would appreciate your prayers for wisdom during this phase of our lives.

We would also appreciate your prayers for my grandma, June Schmid.  She has turned a corner in her illness and is having greater difficulty breathing.  Hospice just started coming this week. 

Yesterday, we visited Grandma, and as I sat with her, so many thoughts crowded my mind.  Above all, gratitude filled my heart for the wonderful privilege it has been to be her granddaughter, for the sweet memories I have of the times we’ve shared for twenty-two years, and for the fact that she has seen not only my first but also my second child.  I’m so glad God saw fit to send my babies when he did, for they have brought a very special joy to Grandma during her illness.  I love seeing the delight in her face when she holds Remember and when Honour plays at her feet.  God has been so gracious to her and to us.

My little girl is now waking up for her last feeding of the evening, so I’d best close.  Love to all the family and friends who read this.  Please bear with me, as I’ve never kept a blog before and really have no idea what I’m doing!

-JESSICA