Monday, August 29, 2011

It's Been Awhile...

WOW. I have taken quite the “break” from the blogosphere lately. For some reason, I was completely lacking inspiration and desire to write and share for a while. I feel like the urge is returning, though. And boy oh BOY do I have lots to share. What a busy and exciting last few months and weeks I and my family have had!
First of all, we found out baby Shackleford is a HE. Jaxon Joshua will be making his appearance in late January. Josh and I are ecstatic. Our baby boy is going to be such a joy. He already is. My sweet cousin did the ultrasound for me in her free time, but unfortunately couldn’t give me pictures, because they were out of paper. I will be having another ultrasound in a couple of weeks, though, and will get some pictures to share then.
I also have had some changes in my job lately, and they are for the better. Praise the Lord for His goodness! I have seen Him move in mighty ways regarding my work schedule and how it will cooperate with taking care of my sweet boy. For about a year now, I have been working 50 hours a week in the engineering department at Phillips Machine Service. It was a great job – kind of monotonous – but a great job, nonetheless. I was thankful for it. Josh and I worked together, and we truly enjoyed that. We have always loved working together. When we found out baby Jaxon was coming, Josh and I began to pray that the Lord would make it clear to us what His plan was as far as my working after baby was here. I have always known I wanted to work in some capacity, even when I had kids. I enjoy contributing to my family. I did know, however, that I wanted my number one priority to be my family – my baby. Josh and Jaxon need to be my focus. And they are and will continue to be. So, we prayed – Lord, make a way for my work schedule to decrease. I need to be home more often when baby arrives. And He began to open doors. About the time I decided it was time to talk to my boss about what I’d like to change within my work schedule, my former position, which I enjoyed much more than the engineering department, opened up again. Immediately Josh and I thought – OK, Lord. We’ve prayed. We feel this opportunity could very well be You opening a door for us. And I went to talk to my former boss. I explained to her the situation, what I wanted, what I needed, and asked what she thought. SHE WAS ALL IN. So, thanks be to God, I will start out with 3 months off when Jaxon arrives (not fully paid, but Josh and I have been saving for that time) return to my job after, working 4 - 10 hr days. I will be off on Wednesdays with my sweet boy. That will break the week up nicely, I feel. And, EVEN BETTER, she said she was willing to allow me to work part time later on, if Josh and I decided we could handle that financially. Our prayers were answered and we were blessed – praise the Lord! God is BEYOND good and gracious to us. We are so thankful for His guidance. His plan is truly best. We look forward to seeing Him continue to work and bless us as we follow His will. My dream is to work 3 - 10 hr days. Please pray with us that the door will open for that to happen at some point.
Last but certainly NOT LEAST, I had the privilege to travel with my parents to Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri, last week to see my brother, Daniel, graduate from OSUT (basic & AIT training combined) and become part of the United States Army National Guard Military Police force. What an experience! I couldn’t be any more proud of his accomplishments. His Platoon, the 4th, was chosen as the honor platoon for the training class and he was chosen to be on the color guard, and MORE. He did so well and grew spiritually during these last 5 months. We are so very proud of him. I will post some pictures, and perhaps some video, of the graduation and family day in the near future. Haven’t been able to sort through them yet.
SO - with all that's been a crazy busy few months. And it's only going to get busier from here! Stay tuned...

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