Monday, March 30, 2009

Update : 33009

Tuesday, March 17... Tough day. As you know, this was a dreaded day as we faced Luke's birthday for the first time. It was hard. We went to his grave with my parents and were joined there by Todd, Angie and their girls. I don't even know how to describe it to you. So many emotions. So awful. So wrong. So painful. STILL SO HARD TO BELIEVE. I think we were there for about an hour... maybe a little more than that... not really sure. We placed flowers on Luke's grave. We wiped away the dust and dirt that had been blown onto his marker. We sat in silence. We talked and caught up on life. Abby, Ellie, Kate and Summer ran around and laughed and played. We enjoyed the beautiful sunshine and warmth of the nearly-spring day. We remembered Luke and shared some stories. We circled around his grave, hand in hand, while Todd prayed. And then we left. 

I guess it's what you do in situations like this. What else is there to do?  

As difficult as that day was, the entire week really, we know many people were praying... we sensed those prayers, we were strengthened and encouraged by them, and we were able to get thru those days in large part because of them. Thanks to all of you who were part of that outpouring on our behalf. God was faithful to listen and kind to act. We are grateful.

Saturday, March 21... I was in the living room with Summer and my parents when I heard Nicol calling out to me from the top of the stairs, "Greg, can you come up here?" By the time I started up the stairs she had already disappeared. I found her standing in the middle of the bathroom with a wonderfully familiar look on her face. I looked over at the vanity and saw something else that has become a familiar sight over the past few years... a home pregnancy test. 

So let me just cut to the chase... Nicol is expecting! We confirmed the HPT with a visit to the doctor the following Monday. I hadn't planned to share the news here this soon, but I decided to do it anyway because the way I see it, there's no reason to wait. Yes, these early weeks are critical. Yes, things can go wrong. Yes, maybe it's best to wait a while. But THAT is exactly why I am sharing this with you... so that you can celebrate with us and, especially, so that you can pray. 

We would be - as always - so thankful for your prayers. This news has a bit of a bittersweetness to it. Bitter because it tears at ours wounds as we miss Luke so much and continue grieve his loss. Sweet because... the precious gift of new life... what more can I say? 


Sunday, March 29, 2009

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Fun Stuff : 32209

March Madness 2009 has not disappointed... in addition to great game action, it has featured some really good commercials... below are two of my favorites... the first one is just silly and fun... the second is fun as well, but it's also a sobering reminder of how quickly time flies with our kiddos.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Our Little Man

Here are some of the very first pictures I took of our little man, Gregory Luke Sponberg, on the evening of March 17, 2008.
*  *  *  *  *

Lukey, just minutes after delivery... actually, at this point we knew his first name was Gregory but we didn't decide on 'Luke' until about two hours later (incidentally, we chose Luke because of it's meaning - 'one who brings light'... hence, 'light your world')... anyway, I remember thinking 'hurry up already and get some clothes on him, it's freezing in here!'... of course, the nurse probably could have finished her job sooner if I would have stopped interrupting her with all sorts of questions... I can also remember walking back and forth, making several trips between Luke and Nicol, seeing if he was okay and checking on her as she went thru all the normal post-op stuff related to the c-section... she wanted me to stay with him so that he wouldn't feel alone, so that he'd have a familiar voice nearby... she was SOOOOO brave that night, more beautiful than ever, and totally thrilled with the arrival of our son. 

One of my favorite pictures of Luke... so peaceful... such a gift... truly a sacred moment. 

Big sister and baby brother... she was so cute with him from the get-go... wanted to hold him all the time in those early hours after his birth... and as you can see, he didn't mind! 

*  *  *  *  *

We miss our little man so much, 
we have missed out on many beautiful moments and milestones over the past 10 months, 
we will miss out on countless more as the days and weeks and years go by,
we have learned things about ourselves and others and life and God not otherwise possible. 
We remember him today,
we celebrate his 71 days with us,
we should be having his first birthday party,
we will visit his grave instead.
This feels so wrong,
this is not what we ever envisioned or planned for,
this is unimaginable heretofore, 
this is why we are grieving with hope.

*  *  *  *  *

We would love to read stories about how Luke's beautiful life has impacted you... if you knew him in any way, or even if you only know of him thru this blog or because someone told you about him, please share with us how he has touched you or someone else that you may know.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Classic Summer

Yesterday we were backing out of our parking spot after lunch when Summer noticed this rather dirty pick-up truck. 

So, what do you suppose our imaginative little one's question was? Well, I won't waste your time... you'd never guess it anyway.

Here ya go: 

"Is that - (long pause) - peanut butter on that car?"

Of course. [ :-) ]

Sorry, I know these stories may get a little old for some, but they are priceless to me.  

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Spurgeon : The Way to Joy

[ On Psalm 19:8a, the precepts of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart ]

"It is true ... there are excellent truths in [other writings], but yet they are far short of [the Scriptures]. Those may comfort against outward trouble, but not against inward fears; they may rejoice the mind, but cannot quiet the conscience; they may kindle some flashy sparkles of joy, but they cannot warm the soul with a lasting fire of solid consolations."

[ Source: ]

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

"little miss matched"

This morning we were visiting Summer's favorite toy store and we came across this interesting display. At first my mind was trying to come up with some ways that this may be representative of life and, while there probably are some parallels that could be drawn, I'm not so sure there's any real need to. Just let it be what it is... fun, interesting, unique... even if you're an "STJ" like me. (Google "Myers-Briggs personality profile" if you're not familiar with the "STJ" thing) 

As you can see, nothing matches... and you have to pay for it... and, in my mind, that's the genius of "little miss matched." Anyway, the mis-matchedness of the flip-flops is obvious. The socks? No pairs in this line... instead, you buy packs of three single socks... each, of course, being a little different from the others. There are shoelaces too and they come in pairs, but they are, you guessed it, totally contrasting in color and pattern.

No, we didn't buy anything. It would create problems for my "STJ" self. Okay, not really, but Summer did go thru a phase several months ago when she wanted to wear different shoes at the same time... her favorite combo was a sneaker on one foot and a sandal on the other... and, yes, I let go of my dumb hang-ups and actually found it quite endearing... but she outgrew that pretty quickly... her thing now is pants or jeans or leggings under dresses and skirts... and she's pretty adamant about it... I'm telling you, this kid likes to style it up!

Ok, so how can I not mention just one life parallel?

I kind of feel like we're all somewhat preoccupied with "matching" everything perfectly, i.e., presenting ourselves in such a way as to give the perception that we've got everything together. And yet, if we're honest, we are more "little miss matched" than Prada or Armani or Kenneth Cole or Claiborne or Ralph or whatever.

I wonder how much our stress levels would subside if we would just adopt Summer's fashion whims when it comes to how we present our mis-matched selves... just let us be what we is... and, please, forgive the grammar. 

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Did You Know : 3309

James Madison, at the Constitutional Convention of 1787, proposed the plan to divide the federal government into branches... Executive, Legislative, and Judicial. 

The source of his plan? 

Isaiah 33:22 --
For the LORD is our judge, [Judicial] 
the LORD is our lawgiver, [Legislative] 
the LORD is our king; [Executive] 
He will save us.

By the way, Madison was our fourth President and is known as the "Father of the Constitution."


Monday, March 2, 2009

On My Mind : 3209

I went to see you today
Except you weren't there
But you were
And that's why this is all so dreadful

We miss you so much
We love you so much
We can't wait to see you again
A moment that won't come soon enough

The wound in our hearts is still fresh
Like the earth that covers your grave, yet covered with grass
The grief remains, at times, raw
Like the frosty, wind chilled air this morning

I remember your sweet smile
On the morning of the day you left us
I remember how it brought me to my knees
And I kissed your precious cheek

Your smile will never leave us
Your eyes still talk to everyone who sees your pictures
You are such a gift
Even though you're gone

I know you are well
More alive than ever
Daily... embraced by your Father
Daily... kissed by the Savior

I miss you son
Momma does too
Your sister as well
You are always, always on our hearts and minds

One day I'll see your sweet face
One day I'll kiss your precious cheek
One day... a much anticipated embrace
And time will never run out

Summer and I went to a basketball game the other day
With your Uncle Todd and your cousins
I missed you there
It wasn't the same without you

It's been almost a year since you came to us
How can it be?
You left much to quickly
We love you son

See you soon