Monday, December 24, 2012

Our Christmas Card That Wont Be Mailed This Year

Zach, Pax, and Chaz

Our 2012
January: Find out we are having twins! (Many mixed emotions about this)
February: Buy and move into our first house (and learn the hard, and cold, way that heating oil goes quickly).
March: Anatomy ultrasound: Two more boys!! Also, Courtney and Paxton stay a week in Medford so James can paint as much inside the house as possible w/o the two year old tornado to work around.
April: The amniotic sack of Baby A starts leaking and Courtney rushes to the hospital and doesn't return home for 6 weeks. We celebrate our 5 year anniversary at a "hotel" in Portland with "room service" (all paid for by health insurance!).
May: Courtney turns 30 in the hospital. May 27, Charles and Zachary arrive, Courtney is released from the hospital; Chaz and Zach remain in the NICU under great care.
June: Paxton turns 2. Chaz and Zach continue to grow.
July 15:  Zach comes home!!
August 15: Chaz comes home!!
September-December: A blur.

After 5 months combined of hospital stay, almost $1 million dollars in medical expenses, around 3,000 miles driven for medical purposes, and minimal psychotherapy for PTSD recovery, we have 3 healthy children, are debt free with a great job, and have 2 vehicles and a nice house. By God's grace we have family and friends who carried us through it all. Thank you, all, for your continued prayers and support of all kinds.

Merry Christmas from the Waltons

Photo: Zachary (7mo), Paxton (2 1/2) and Charles (7mo)

Friday, February 17, 2012

That’s Our House!

Months ago we started to consider buying a house. I met with a mortgage broker to see if it was even a possibility. We called a realtor and started scouting a real estate web site and soon a house popped up in Canby that I just KNEW was our house. I even exclaimed, “James! That’s our house!” It was the first one we looked at and within a few minutes of being there we decided to make an offer.

The house had only been on the market a few days but another offer was submitted on the same evening. The sellers chose the other buyers. I was a little confused; I just knew that was our house.

We continued to look at other houses but nothing compared to the location, quality, and size for the price of that first house. We looked at the house for sale next door; it was a great house but I knew I couldn’t live there because I didn’t want to hate my neighbors for living in “our house”. We made a few offers elsewhere but weren’t excited about them and were glad they didn’t get accepted. Then we found a fixer-upper just down the street.

Our offer was accepted on the fixer house and we entered the process. The contractors and sub-contractors came out to give us quotes on the remodel, and our realtor took our earnest money check up to the Beaverton office. After the contractors left the house I sat there with an uneasy feeling. I called Dave, the realtor, and asked, “did you turn in the check yet?” “No, I’m in the parking lot”. “Good,” I said, “don’t submit it. This isn’t right.”

We decided to pull our current offer and submit a lower offer just in case it was the price that I was feeling was so wrong. The next day, Dave called and said someone else offered higher and we didn’t get the house. “But…” he said,

“I have word from the selling agent of the first house that the other buyers couldn’t get financing and are about to pull their offer.”

“Great! That’s our house! Submit our offer again!” No need to discuss this with James; I knew we were in agreement.

Someone else submitted an offer also. Our wonderful realtor wrote a letter to the sellers describing us, in case that helped in the their decision.

It turns out the other people’s offer was a bit higher, but the sellers chose us.

Thank you, Lord, for letting us in on Your secrets, for guiding our ways, and for taking care of Your kids. You are good; may our lives in and out of this house reflect our thankfulness of your grace and mercy.

After a few months of paperwork, inspections, and repairs, we closed the deal on February 16, 2012.

That’s our house!

PS. For buying or selling a home, we suggest contacting David Peck, Realtor

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Dizygotic What?

We found out on December 1 that we are having another baby. The first ultrasound was on January 9; it was a day that changed our lives forever.

I hadn’t been feeling nearly as miserable as I had been with Paxton. On the way up the hill to the clinic, I told James that I was preparing to hear that there was nothing in there. He agreed with me and we proceeded to the office.

Two months in a row previous to this pregnancy a cyst burst on my left ovary. As the ultrasound tech began her search on my abdomen I asked her to check out the ovaries to make sure they were clear; she kept silent. My mom, Paxton, and James were in the room with us and I tried to keep from crying as the technician pressed on my very full bladder for what seemed like an eternity, her continued silence making me even more concerned. Finally she said something.

“I have something else to tell you…”

I rose up to my elbows as my worst fear had been confirmed. “There’s nothing in there?”

She turned the screen to show me and said, “Here is baby number 1… and here is baby number 2.”

Say wha?!!!

My mom instantly burst into tears. So I cried. So Paxton started crying, not sure why we were crying but thinking it appropriate to join in. James just sat with his elbows on his knees and his rubbing his beard, every so often whispering, “Wow.”

We were flooded with emotions but only one word kept coming out of our mouths: Wow.

Since that day, I have gone through many phases that went something like this:



Blink…… Blink.


“We need a bigger car!”


“I’m going to be HUGE!”

and most recently, as we near the end of the first and exhausting/nauseating trimester, settling in to

“I hate being pregnant; its a good thing we're getting 2 for 1 because I am never doing this again.”

I know everything is going to be fine. I can come up with a gazillion Bible verses and promises that don’t actually make me feel any better because I have to process through this in my own way...with time. Having other people around me getting excited has been helpful. Having people offering help through the pregnancy and entering baby-mode has been relieving. But ultimately, I am just very aware of the fact that God gave us 30 weeks to adjust to this big news and for that I am very thankful.

It takes a lot for me to throw my hands up and give my life to the Lord because I’m a pretty capable person. But this? This was a zinger. And it’s exactly what He meant to do.

Somehow that gives me the most peace.