Goodbye Sweetpea Love

She lived 14 years and had a wonderful life chasing squirrels, lizards, and barking at horses on road trips with her mommy and daddy.

She loved to sleep on comfy doggy beds made of pillows and blankets.

She was a good big sister to Pebbles

And best of all, she really loved her mommy and daddy

I’ll miss this precious face for the rest of my life and I can’t wait to see her someday when I get where I’m going.  Mommy and Daddy love you forever Sweetpea.


My First Miscarriage: FINAL Part 7

To read part 6 click here.

The rest of the week at vacation bible school was an incredible experience full of joy and blessings.  It was so wonderful to have the children telling me how much they enjoyed coming to missions, and giving me sweet hugs.  It was amazing to see how excited they were to learn about Jesus and his love, and I was thrilled to be able to share the good news of Jesus with them.

On the fourth day of VBS, we had some of the older children stay behind to listen to a message from Pastor Wallace about when he accepted Christ into his heart.  Afterwards the children could return to the classrooms with their teachers, or stay behind if they wanted to talk more with an adult about their faith.

I spoke with Zachary, a sweet 9-year-old boy who wasn’t quite sure what to think about God.  He told me that he believed in God, but that he wasn’t ready to make any kind of decision that day. I told him that there was no pressure to make a decision, and that God would work in his life and reveal himself at the perfect timing.

I asked him to tell me a little bit about himself, and he told me that his puppy dog had recently passed away and that his father was serving in Iraq.  I told him that his puppy dog was in Heaven with God, and that he would see him again someday, and it was the happiest place his dog could be.  I then told him that I was going to pray for his father, and tell everyone I know to pray for his father.  I told him that God would be with his father, and Zachary’s eyes filled with tears.  It broke my heart to see this precious little boy who had such a heavy burden of worry for his father.  I gave him a big hug and asked if he would like to pray with me, and we prayed together for his father’s safety and protection.

I then told Zachary a little bit about myself, and how God saved me when I thought that I had no one who cared about me.  I told him how much Jesus loves me and Zachary and how he was willing to die on the cross so that we can spend eternity with Him. I then gave him a bible, and told him that anytime he feels alone or scared or worried, he can go to God in prayer and he can read the bible and know that God is right there with him.

We said another prayer and then I walked him back to his classroom and he gave me a hug goodbye.  It was the best moment of my life sharing God’s love with a child.

The Sunday before Vacation Bible School started, Pastor Wallace prayed that we would have so many children attend that the teachers wouldn’t know what to do or where to put everyone.  Praise God for Pastor Wallace and that awesome prayer! I feel so honored and blessed to have been able to witness to so many children that week, and I am so thankful to God for showing me how great his love is, so that when I spoke about that love, the children could see the pure joy in my face.

It was the worst week of my life and also the best week of my life.

Losing my first child was one of the hardest things I’ve ever experienced, but knowing that my child was born in Heaven with my Savior is an amazing feeling.  Someday, when I die, I will get to meet my child and I will get to meet my sweet, sweet Jesus.  I can’t wait for that day to come, but until it does, I will walk through this life, remembering the love of my Father, and telling everyone I know, how that love can save.

A note: I wrote this story in 2011 before I had any other miscarriages.  I thought that this story would help other people, and perhaps it has, but a year later after suffering from 3 miscarriages and months and months of tears and pain, this story is helping me.  The testimony I wrote of God’s great love for me is just what I needed to hear during a time when I am feeling broken and weary.  I pray that this story will be a blessing for you as well.

God bless you and thank you for reading,


I Can Only Imagine by Mercy Me:

“Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance.” – James 1:2-3

“He will wipe every tear from their eyes.  There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” -Revelation 21:4

“But our citizenship is in heaven.  And we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ, who, by the power that enables him to bring everything under his control, will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like his glorious body.” -Philippians 3:20-21

“Jesus answered, ‘I am the way and the truth and the life.  No one comes to the Father except through me.” -John 14: 6

“Therefore we do not lose heart.  Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day.  For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.  So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen.  For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.” -2 Corinthians 4: 16-18

“Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.” -Romans 12:12

“Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst.  Indeed, the water I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” -John 4:13-14

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My First Miscarriage: Part 6

To read part 5 click here.

As I was writing the bible verse for the day 3 lesson plan, John 3:16, a bible verse I had read a thousand times before, it hit me just how much God loves me and you. John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”

A few weeks before, I was talking to my dad about the story of Abraham having such a great faith that he was willing to sacrifice his son, but instead sacrificed a ram on the altar as a substitute for his son Isaac.

My dad was telling me that the story was a parallel between the ram as a substitute for Isaac and Christ on the cross as a substitute for us. He was also talking about how Jesus could not have planned for these events to happen in such a way if he was just a man, but that is one I will share in a future post.

As I thought about the parallel between that story and the death of Christ on the cross, and as I read over John 3:16, I began to cry.

While I was in the middle of losing my first child, God was showing me just how clearly he understood what I was going through.

He loved me so much that he gave up his one and only Son just so he can spend eternity with me.

Not only did this reveal the enormous love of my God, my savior and redeemer, it also showed me the compassion of my God who knew the pain of giving up his Son to die in my place.

The weight of that sacrifice, I will never fully understand, but my God was willing to save me.

Though I do not deserve to be saved, though I questioned his great love for me, though I ignored him and rejected him, though I gave up on him, my God was willing to die on the cross, all for me, and all for you. I am the nail in His wrist, but he loves me anyways.

I can never know for sure why I lost my first child in a miscarriage, but I have a feeling that it was so that God could make me understand how much he loves me so that I can tell others how much he loves them.  Instead of being angry over the situation, I was happy because God was using me to save others, by sharing the story of His perfect love.

To be continued in the final part 7.



Beauty will Rise by Steven Curtis Chapman:

“So do not be ashamed to testify about our Lord, or ashamed of me his prisoner.  But join with me in suffering for the gospel, by the power of God, who has saved us and called us to a holy life – not because of anything we have done but because of his own purpose and grace.  This grace was given in Christ Jesus before the beginning of time, but it has now been revealed through the appearing of our Savior, Christ Jesus, who has destroyed death and has brought life and immortality to light through the gospel.”  -2 Timothy 1:8-10

“Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face.  Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.  And now these three remain: faith, hope, and love.  But the greatest of these is love.” -1 Corinthians 13: 12-13

“Then Christ will dwell in your hearts through faith.  And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge – that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.” -Ephesians 3: 17-19

“But God demonstrates his own love for us in this way: while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” -Romans 5:8

“How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are! The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him.”  -1 John 3:1

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My First Miscarriage: Part 5

To read part 4 click here.

After that moment of revelation, I knew what I needed to do. I needed to keep my focus on Christ. I had made a commitment to teach Vacation Bible School, and it was time that I truly put my heart and soul into that challenge.

I stayed up late that Monday night working on our new lesson plan for day 2. I was very excited that we had changed from the classroom setting to the large sanctuary, as it enabled me to create the lesson in a way I was more comfortable teaching. The previous lesson plans were great, but I’m just not a big fan of a lot of games and activities. I wanted to teach the children, pray with them, and show them how fun and awesome it is to serve God as a missionary. I made it my goal for the week to get the children excited about telling others about Jesus, and I think we were successful in doing just that.

I can’t say enough, how truly amazing our Savior Jesus Christ is. His love is like nothing else in this world, and if you can accept that and humbly ask for his healing power, he is mighty to save. There is no doubt about it, I was sad and I was going to be sad for a while. There’s a grieving process and I was about to fully embark on it, but with Jesus on my side.

I was also still dealing with the physical pain of the miscarriage, but I feel like the Holy Spirit was right there with me, giving me a great strength that I’d never seen of myself before. This is not the Amber I knew. The Amber I knew would have given up at the first sign of stomach cramping. But this Amber looked more like the work of Christ. In my weakness, He is perfect and strong, and I praise God for molding me into someone who does not give up. (Okay now I know someone reading this is dying laughing because I just spoke of myself in third person-I know it sounded weird, but I couldn’t think of another way to write it).

As the week went on, I learned more and more about how awesome God truly is. And here I thought that I was the one teaching the children. Every night after vacation bible school, I got to work on the next day’s lesson plan. As I studied certain lesson plans, it was amazing the wisdom God revealed before me.

To be continued in part 6.



Safe by Phil Wickham:

“Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.  Be self-controlled and alert.  Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.  Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that your brothers throughout the world are undergoing the same kind of sufferings.  And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast. To him be the power for ever and ever. Amen.” -1 Peter 5: 7-11

“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” -John 3:16

“There is no fear in love.  But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.” -1 John 4:18

“Be strong and courageous.  Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” -Joshua 1:9

“The righteous cry out, and the Lord hears them; he delivers them from all their troubles.  The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. A righteous man may have many troubles, but the Lord delivers him from them all” -Psalm 34:17-18

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My First Miscarriage: Part 4

To read part three click here.

With God’s help (I didn’t want to admit it at the time) we were able to get through the first presentation without breaking down into tears, and then the vacation bible school coordinator came in and told us we were moving to the church sanctuary.  It was a huge blessing to move from our tiny classroom to the sanctuary, and although I had to re-structure our presentation to fit that new setting, it ended up working out much better than the classroom ever could have.  That is where God needed us to teach to be the most effective, and I’m so happy that it worked out that way.

I even got to use a microphone, which I have to admit-I just LOVE having a microphone in my hands.  It brings back memories of my childhood when I had a play microphone and I would sing for my pretend audience ;-)

Each presentation got better and better as the day went on, and when we finally finished I was relieved.  Even though I knew we had a lot of work ahead of us, and it was going to be a rough week, I felt better knowing that we survived the first day, and that it would only get better from that point on.

When I got home, I didn’t want to sleep.  I just wanted to sit on the computer and read blogs about miscarriage and get on to read the miscarriage/pregnancy loss message board.  Although, I was glad to have those resources available-I quickly realized that having a miscarriage during the week of vacation bible school was the best possible time to have it, because I was so busy that it didn’t give me time to sit at home and feel horrible over this loss.

One really good thing did come out of reading miscarriage blogs, because I found an article from a Christian author who suffered from several miscarriages, and she said that it was okay to be angry with God.  That was a natural feeling and that we needed to take that feeling to the cross, and let Him help us deal with that part of the grieving process.  So, that’s what I did.  I talked to Jesus and I told him that I didn’t understand and that I was angry that this had happened to me.

I can’t tell you how important it is to be honest with God, even when we don’t think that it is possible for us to go to Him.  God will bless you beyond anything you can imagine if you can just let your guard down and allow Him to heal you, even during the times when part of the healing process is learning to move past your anger against God.

After talking with God, I decided I needed to read the book of Job in the bible.  Job was a righteous man who feared God and hated evil.  Satan was sure that he could get Job to speak against God, and said this, “Have you not put a hedge around him and his household and everything he has?  You have blessed the work of his hands, so that his flocks and herds are spread throughout the land.  But stretch out your hand and strike everything he has, and he will surely curse you to your face.”

Job was put through many tests in an effort by Satan to get him to curse against the Lord;  he lost his possessions, his children, and his health.  Although he lost everything, Job did not lose his trust in God, and when nothing else was left, he had God and that was enough.  God eventually spoke to Job and even restored his possessions, health and family and gave him even greater blessings than he had before.

That night, I spoke with my husband about what I had read in Job and I asked, “Do you think that maybe I’m going through a test?”  His reply changed my entire week, “It’s very possible.  Whatever you are going through, God is only allowing it to happen because he knows that you are strong enough to be tested.  He knows that you won’t give up on Him.”

Suddenly, the rest of my week was changed.  Instead of being angry, and focused on what I was losing, I realized that God was ON MY SIDE and he already knew that I was going to win this battle.

I also remembered a prayer that I had prayed to Him a few months prior:  I was watching a movie at a monthly bible study we attend, A Greater Yes: The Story of Amy Newhouse, about Amy, who was a high school student who had a huge heart for Christ.  She was diagnosed with cancer and I won’t spoil the story for you, but basically God used her suffering for a greater purpose: to save others.  It was such a powerful story to me, and I just prayed, “God, whatever I need to go through in this life to bring you glory, let your will be done.”

I can’t know what God’s purpose is for any of the suffering during this life, but I do know that any pain that I experience in this life, my God will use for a greater eternal purpose.

To be continued in part 5.



Blessings by Laura Story:

“God is our refuge and strength, and ever-present help in trouble.  Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging.” -Psalm 46: 1-3

“Hear my cry, O God; listen to my prayer.  From the ends of the earth I call to you, I call as my heart grows faint; lead me to the rock that is higher than I.  For you have been my refuge, a strong tower against the foe.  I long to dwell in your tent forever and take refuge in the shelter of your wings.” -Psalm 61: 1-4

“My soul finds rest in God alone; my salvation comes from him.  He alone is my rock and my salvation; he is my fortress, I will never be shaken.” -Psalm 62: 1-2

“The name of the Lord is a strong tower; the righteous run to it and are safe.” -Proverbs 18:10

My First Miscarriage: Part 3

To read part 2 click here.

I woke up at 3 am the next morning in a state of agonizing pain, ran to the bathroom, and knew for sure that I was having a miscarriage as I looked down and saw heavy bleeding.  My heart sank and I didn’t know how I was going to tell my husband that we had lost our baby.  I couldn’t cry at that moment; I was in shock and trying to process the end of my short pregnancy.

I got back in bed, touched Jon’s shoulder, and said, “I’m having a miscarriage for sure. I’m so sorry.”  That’s when it hit me and I started to cry because I felt like such a failure, and I wondered if I had caused this.  I thought, “If I had just listened to Jon and not bought a pregnancy test, I might not have known this happened. We wouldn’t have broken hearts if I had been more patient.”

When it was time to wake up and start getting ready for Vacation Bible School, I wasn’t sure if I was going to go.  As I sat there thinking about Sharon (my mother in law who I was teaching with) having to teach by herself, I was angry that this was happening, but I didn’t want to leave her alone on our first day of vacation bible school.  I got out of bed, took more Tylenol than you should (but hey I was in pain and I didn’t want to feel it while I was trying to teach) took a shower, and waited for Sharon to pick me up for VBS.  I asked Jon to call his mom for me and tell her what was happening, and to ask her not to talk about it.

I was so angry and bitter and I just couldn’t believe that this was happening to me when I had to spend the next five days teaching and doing something I was already uncomfortable doing without an added miscarriage to it.  I can’t remember if I prayed that morning, but I think that I was ignoring God while I was trying to deal with my emotions.

For VBS me and Sharon were teaching missions, and we had 5 different age groups come through every 30 minutes.  We had everything planned out perfectly and our room was ready and set up.  As our first group arrived, chaos erupted.  We only expected to have 20 to 30 students, and instead we had 70+.  Our classroom was too small and there wasn’t enough chairs for everyone.  Praise God for the other teachers, because they arranged the kids 2 per chair and were a big help in managing the situation.

As we started the presentation, and every thing seemed to be going wrong, I thought, “How am I going to make it through this week.  Why is God letting this happen to me? Did I do something to upset him?”

To be continued in part 4.



“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.  Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.  For my yoke is easy and my burden is light. -Matthew 11: 28-30

“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” -Romans 8:28

“My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” -2 Corinthians 12:9

My First Miscarriage: Part 2

To read part 1 click here.

The next morning, Sunday, I woke up and was still having stomach cramps.  I then noticed that I was starting to spot.  I did a little bit of research online and realized that I might be facing a miscarriage.  I debated staying home and resting, but eventually decided to go to church.

I was in a constant state of prayer, just begging and pleading with God to heal me and my baby, and let me go on to have a healthy 9 months of pregnancy.  As we started singing the song by Chris Tomlin, Our God ( I started to weep.

The lyrics, “And if our God is with us, then what can stand against us” really touched me deeply.  In my moment of weakness, I knew that God was stronger than all of this, and he would pull me through this.

After church, I went home to nap and get some rest before heading back to church to work on set up for Vacation Bible School.  All I could think about at this point in time was, why on earth did I sign up to teach?  I kept thinking, “If I had known this was going to happen, I would have never signed up.”

It is obvious to me now that Satan was trying to attack me at my weakest moment, and he was doing a good job getting inside my head.  But God had his hold on me, and the Holy Spirit guided me to not turn away but instead continue to pray to my God.  Prayer is the only reason I survived that battle.

It was the hardest day of the week for me, because I had no idea yet if this was happening, but I felt hopeless and sure that I was losing the baby.  In my weakest moment of heartbreak, I fell to the ground and cried out to the Lord, “Please Lord, please. Please keep my baby alive. Please Lord, PLEASE!”  I was crying so hard that I could hardly breath and I was begging God to let me have this child.  It was heartbreaking for me praying, because I knew that God could save this pregnancy, but I also knew that it might not be in his will for me to have a child right now.  I knew that I had no control over what was going to happen, but I hoped that God would give me what I wanted.

After I calmed down, I pulled myself together and went to church to set up for Vacation bible school, and I focused on that task and tried not to think about what was happening with my body.

When I got home from setting up for VBS, I looked to God’s word for comfort, prayed, and then left it in God’s hands.  After praying, I felt confident that God would heal me and the baby, and I went to sleep that night feeling peaceful.

To be continued in part 3.



“So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God.  I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” -Isaiah 41:10

“The Lord is my light and my salvation-whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life-of whom shall I be afraid?” -Psalm 27:1

“When you lie down, you will not be afraid; for the Lord will be your confidence” -Proverbs 3: 24,26

“Cast your cares on the Lord and he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous fall.” -Psalm 55:22

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My First Miscarriage: Part 1

It was June 10, 2011 and I was anxiously waiting for my period to start.  I had been extremely emotional that week, and I just had a feeling that I might be pregnant.  I think I sat on the couch all day long, just sitting, and waiting for something to happen.  I was too nervous to do anything other than sit there and wait.

When my husband came home from work, and my period had not yet arrived, I begged him to go to the store and buy me a pregnancy test.  Jonathan asked that I be patient and wait a few more days, as he didn’t want to waste money on a pregnancy test.  I’m quite annoying when I don’t get my way, so Jon eventually gave in and went to the store to buy a test.

I took the test, set it on the counter, and asked Jon to set his timer for 3 minutes.  My hands were shaking from the nerves, and I was scared that I would see a negative result.  I went and sat on the bed, folded my hands in my lap, and prayed to God.  I asked God, that if he could just bless us with a child, I would be a good Christian mother.

The three minutes passed and I ran to the bathroom, as I started to yell out to Jon, “It’s negat…” I suddenly noticed a second line.  Tears filled my eyes and I couldn’t believe what I was seeing:

Jonathan was in shock.  I had to do a google search to show him that even if the line wasn’t as dark as the control line, a second line faint or not was a positive result.  We had to leave the house because we had plans to eat dinner with Jon’s parents at I-HOP; we decided that we shouldn’t say anything yet.

On the car ride there, I look over and notice that Jon is crying, and I said “Are you okay?”  He replied, “I’m happy.  I didn’t think we would ever get pregnant.”  (A side note: I suffered with endometriosis until January of this year-that story coming later). It was a beautiful moment seeing my husband so happy about the life God created through us.

We were both full of joy as we ate dinner with his parents, and it was very difficult not to talk about what we had just discovered.  After dinner we were going to meet at their house to watch a movie, and we decided that we were just too happy not to share our good news.  We went to target and found two bibs that said, “I love Grandma” and “I love Grandpa”.  When we told Jon’s parents the good news, his mom screamed in excitement, and his dad was just as shocked as Jonathan.

It was a wonderful and exciting evening celebrating our pregnancy.  We calculated that I was due around February 16, 2012-just a few weeks before our one year wedding anniversary.

The next morning, we made a trip to Walgreens to buy a digital pregnancy test.  Lines are so confusing, and I needed to see the word:

We spent the rest of the day talking and planning for our Valentine’s Day baby.  It was one of the most joyful days of my life-being completely filled with excitement and hope. I had promised God that I would be a good Christian mother, and I was ready to start immediately.  I read the bible to my belly starting from the beginning.  I even made Jonathan read some of the bible to my belly-which we did feel a little silly doing, but I believe that life begins at conception.

Later that night I called my parents to tell them the good news.  My dad was shocked but happy.  My mom was worried for me.  It was funny to see how everyone reacted differently.

After I got off the phone, my stomach started to cramp, and I told Jon that I was headed to bed to get some rest. We wanted to call others, but I was worried that maybe I was causing too much stress to my body.  I thought a good nights rest would make everything better.

To be continued in part 2.



“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.” -Proverbs 3:5-6

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Friday Homemaking Tip

A quick Friday tip from my husband’s grandmother.  I was never able to meet Jon’s grandmother (on his father’s side) because she passed away from cancer years before I was in the picture, but I enjoy hearing stories about her.

For the longest time, I would wait until the dishwasher was completely full to run a load of dishes and I was always complaining about needing something and having to wait for it to be clean.

One day, Jonathan finally shared some of his grandmother’s wisdom and told me, “My grandma always said not to wait until the dishwasher is full to run it.  As soon as your done with the dishes, run it that same night.”

Genius! We can often go through dishes and cookware quickly and this tip has made a huge difference in keeping my kitchen clean and having tools available when I need them.

Have a great weekend,


Whole Chicken Part 3: Homemade chicken soup

This is part 3 of my 4 part series on how to use a whole chicken.

Part 1 will discuss how to cook the whole chicken in the crock pot.

Part 2 will discuss how to make homemade chicken broth from the leftover bones and skin.

Part 3 will discuss how to make homemade chicken soup from the chicken broth.

Part 4 will discuss the health benefits of homemade chicken broth.

Homemade Chicken Soup:

Step 1: Chop 1 onion and 2 cloves of garlic.

Step 2: In a large pot, saute the onion and garlic in melted butter and olive oil (the smell is wonderful!)

Step 3: Add the homemade chicken broth and anything else you would like: brown rice, lentils, vegetables, pasta, etc.  I like to use chopped up carrots and brown rice.  (I used about 2 carrots and 1 cup of brown rice)

Step 4: Season with your favorite seasonings: salt, pepper, thyme, paprika, cayenne pepper, etc and simmer for an hour.  Add in chicken and season to taste.

Step 5: Serve and enjoy or freeze for later.  This chicken soup is really good for you and also a great meal to have on a fall or winter day.  Freezing some for a sick day would be a great idea as well.

I hope you enjoy, and join me for part 4 where I will discuss the health benefits of homemade chicken broth.



Linking with Courtney from

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