Sunday, November 23, 2008

Halloween Fun!

Emily had a great Halloween this year! She was Dorothy from the Wizard of Oz. (Watch out Judy Garland!) She went to the Fall Festival at church, then out for some trick-or-treating. The next night her Martial Arts studio hosted a sleep-over! They had huge jumpies and video games and laser tag. We thought maybe we'd get a "There's no place like home!" call in the middle of the night, but our brave girl stayed through to breakfast!

Apple Pickin'

Last month Emily took some friends to a fun filled day to celebrate the fall! We went to an apple orchard and picked our own apples and had a picnic. The apples were so yummy! Then we went to Julian and ate some hot apple pie! Then on the way back we stopped at a pumpkin patch and went through a corn maze! That was so fun!

AH Zah!

Here is Emily's Tang Su Do portrait from Martial Arts! Quite the warrior princess she is. One night Chris was on the church playground with her and some of her friends playing Bully. He poked his head throught he window of the playhouse and Emily gave him a strike-center punch in the eye! Needless to say he didn't to that again!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Sad days for the Gustafsons

Hi friends and family. This is a very hard post. We had some wonderful news to share that I just couldn't wait to post, but instead it turned to bad.

We were expecting our second baby. We were at 9 weeks to the day and gathered as one big happy family at our first ultrasound appointment. Emily was there and so excited to get a glimpse of her baby brother or sister. (she was very confident it was a girl though!) That morning I explained how the ultrasound worked by taking a picture using soundwaves and she said, "Oh, like a bat!" I said, "huh?" and she replied, "Yeah, like a bat. They use sound to determine how far away they are from things." (She is so bright for 5!)

I was hoping to make lots of calls and post a beautiful ultrasound picture to everyone with the good news. We did get the picture, but we also got some bad news. The radiology center sent us directly over to the Dr. When we got there, he told us that they could not find a heartbeat. He conducted his own ultrasound and could not find one either. We were all in shock, because the baby measured 21mm which is consistent with the size of a 9 week old baby.

We were definitely in denial for a while and I kept asking, "That's it? The baby died when, today? Is there really no hope?" He said he believed that the baby had already died, but he said we have time to wait and check again to be absolutely sure. We waited 5 days and had another ultrasound with the same result - no growth and no heartbeat.

We had scheduled a D&C but I miscarried on my own the next day. We went to the ER because unbelieveably I was in labor. But I am physically recovering well and emotionally healing.

The first couple of days were the hardest for sure. I think I went through the 5 stages of grieving in those first days. I was in shock and disbelief, I was angry, I bargained with God, I blamed myself and I was unbelieveably sad - sad for me and Chris but also very sad for Emily who was very attached - She prayed every night for a baby sister for 2 years! I definitely could not say that this was for God's glory at that time...

...but after I was too tired to cry anymore, I was then able to see God's hand in the whole event!
* A week prior to the ultrasound appointment our home fellowship had a chaplain come as a guest speaker. He has minstered in over 30 baby deaths and his family suffered through 2 miscarriages. And he had very important words that I needed to have to help my and my family's grieving process.
* My appointment for the ultrasound was postponed because of Chris' schedule. It is likely that we would have gone in and not known there was a problem at all!
* Chris forced me to stay home the day I miscarried. I had planned to go into work because the Dr. had told me as long as I was still on the hormones I was taking I would probably not miscarry on my own. I would have been abolutely devistated to have a miscarriage at work!
* I was spared from the D&C - a surgery that requires general anestesia and also can cause scaring leading to future fertility problems!
* I had such an outpouring of support, meals and prayers from my close prayer partners! (Thank You!)

As I went back to work on Monday, God put Psalm 30:5 on my heart, "...weeping may remain for a night, but with the morning comes rejoicing!" That is exactly how I felt. I didn't want to cry anymore (even though I still do sometimes). I wanted to be thankful for the favor the Lord showed on us at this horrible time. Loving God doesn't mean we won't experience trials, but we must learn from them. And with Him, the burden is much lighter!

May this story encourage all of you who are going through trials. "All things work together for good for those who love God..." Romans 8:28

Monday, September 1, 2008

Blues Clues

Emily and Daddy played Blues Clues today. She made a notebook just like the one on the show and Mommy helped her make up three clues that would lead Daddy to discovering her favorite thing to do - Go to the Zoo!

Emily started Kindergarten two weeks ago! She is loving school and doing great! She is such a big kid! We are so proud of her!

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Camping Trip!

Emily has been begging us to go camping. She loves to build forts or get under our bed blankets with a flashlight. So we aquiessed, and were lucky to score a beach spot on Camp Pendleton (love those military bennies!) Many campers stopped by and said we had the best spot in the campground!

We had a great time. Emily kept laying in her sleeping bag just because she could! We played cards, played in the surf and cooked some yummy meals (after all, camping IS all about EATING!) The smores were so yummy too! It was pretty funny when the pancake batter exploded on Daddy and Emily!

We enjoyed playing in the surf. Emily had fun building sandcastles and digging holes.

And we had fun helping our little mermaid!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Warrior Princess

This is a true warrior princess. As Chris was sorting through the Army gear to return, Emily decided to model some of the battle dress for us!
This is her warrior face!

We're in the Navy now!

I went to bed an Army wife and woke up a Navy wife! (It wasn't long ago that I went to bed a Navy wife and woke up an Army wife!) Chris has left his Army boots behind and gone back to his sea legs! Chris was commissioned in the US Navy Reserves on the 4th of July on the USS Midway! (A retired aircraft carrier turned floating museum in San Diego Bay). Why you ask? Better carreer options and shorter deployments if we have to do that again! Praying we won't!!!

It was a wonderful ceremony, and thanks to all our friends and family who turned out to help us celebrate!

Chris' uncle Eric gave him the sword that he received at his Navy Commissioning in 1965!!!

We took the tour of the USS Midway and for one day only there was the original copy of the Declaration of Independence! Awesome!

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Emily's 5th Birthday Safari Party!

Today Emily celebrated her 5th birthday party - Safari Style! We had quite an adventure with over 20 of her adventurous friends taking part in the festivities! Safari Guy came and led the party in fun games - water balloon toss, tug of war, potato sack races and three-legged races. Emily looked fabulous in her Jr. Zookeeper uniform she secured from her latest trek to the zoo!

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Emily's Swimming Lessons

Emily started swimming lesssons this week. She has only had two classes, but she has already gotten her face under the water! (Big step for us!)

She loves her teacher, Mr. Bryan, and can't hardly wait until her next lesson!

Our Gustafson Family Blog

We are just starting with our blog. We hope you enjoy reading our posts and getting some insight into our fast paced life.

Please stop by often and remeber to comment!

The LORD bless you, and keep you
The LORD make His face shine on you,And be gracious to you
The LORD lift up His countenance on you,And give you peace.
~Numbers 24-26