Sunday, July 1, 2012


So this post is a bit late. As most of you already know, Michael and I are expecting a little BOY!! It's so crazy to think that our due date is ONE MONTH from today!!! We got the nursery all put together, we just need to get the glider ordered and wait for baby!! We were just talking this morning about how "surreal" it all seems. Walking into the nursery helps make it feel more real, because it is no longer our guest room. I love looking at his little clothes, crazy how small they start out!! Work has been busy for this mama, but will continue to slow down in the next 2 1/2 weeks. I enjoy my jobs, but I am looking forward to a break, and then spending time looking after my own child. :) We were blessed by so many wonderful people, whether they were throwing showers for us, or attending the shower and just loving on us. It has truly been humbling, seeing how people who haven't even met Peanut yet, just want to love on him!!! Each time Michael helped load things from showers, we just stood there in awe! God has placed many wonderful people in our life. And we can't wait to introduce ALL of you to our son once he arrives! Right now we are just trying to finalize our birth plan, pack our GO bags, and just enjoy time together. Crazy to think that in a matter of WEEKS our lives will be changed FOREVER!!! In a good way too!! We have a couple classes at the hospital this week, start our weekly midwife appointments, and then it's just time to wait! Thanks again to those of you who have continued to love on us, and pray for Peanut, he sure does a good job reminding me that he is here, and that he is a precious gift from our Wonderful Lord!! This may be the last post before Peanuts arrival, unless I am able to find some more free time before then!! Thanks again for following us on this amazing journey God has chosen for Michael and I!! Here's a sneak peak at Peanut's room!!

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Time sure does fly when you're having fun!!

Sorry for the LONG delay in postings!! No, this is not the post where Peanut's gender is revealed, that will come mid-June! :) So far baby is doing GREAT!!! Michael was able to feel Peanut kick for the FIRST time on his birthday!! It was pretty special!!! Since then, Peanut wiggles and squirms around a TON!! I even find myself waking up during the night due to wiggles and movement, with a smile on my face!! I just LOVE how God gives those reminders that baby is ok! We are now able to SEE Peanut move!!! It's quite funny!!! Michael and I just laugh!! Peanut really loves hearing daddy's voice!! You would think I was popping popcorn in my "grow area" while Michael is talking!! Michael started calling my belly my "grow area" for fun and it stuck!! :) We have been pretty busy, Michael is doing yard stuff, and we are trying to rearrange rooms so the nursery can be painted. My summer will jump start in a few weeks, and so will all the showers. We will hopefully slow down mid-June, when the last of the showers, before Peanut is born, are done. We will have our shower in Kansas City afterwards. One of my dearest childhood friends is expecting her first child in just a few short weeks, and so I am excitingly awaiting a text to say baby is here!!!! For our Anniversary and Baby Moon, we went to, what I like to call, The Pella Dutch Festival!! Since there weren't any tulips, calling it the Tulip Time Festival just didn't seem right :)We enjoyed taking a few days off of work, and just having some down time. We were so blessed to have our wonderful neighbors look after Cooper!! Cooper just LOVES Tim and Julie!! Many days he just stares at their house!! Their dog loves squeaky toys, and now Cooper loves them!! Here is his new favorite toy!! His squeaking chicken!! He is always near it.
It's been fun comparing profile shots of Peanut, and looking at them side by side!! Especially after Peanut had a mild growth spurt!! Here is the difference between week 16 and week 24!
This next Peanut shot was taken at 28 weeks and 6 days!!! I can't believe we are ALMOST down to single digit weeks!!!
We have since started going to see our midwife every 2 weeks!! We just feel SO blessed everytime we hear that little heart beating, and also when we see baby move!!! God just continues to bless us and most days we are speechless! I have started reading a short story every night to Peanut, while doing little tickles on my "grow area" :) It's fun like I already mentioned to watch baby move as I read. Thank you to those of you who have continued to keep us in your prayers!! I had a wonderful Mother's Day, a few tears were shed, thinking of my baby already snuggled with Jesus, but then hope falls on my heart and it brings a smile to my face! I will try to post more profile pictures as Peanut continues to grow each day and week!! ~Michael and Ashley

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Post worth waiting for .....

So a few months ago, I posted about our Christmas Adventures!! Things have been kinda crazy lately, with me trying to rearrange my work schedule to prepare for summer.
One story from Christmas that we will now share is what I like to call
"The Christmas Peanut"
After we opened gifts with family, and everyone was sitting around trying to gather their boxes and wrapping paper, Michael asked everyone to stop what they were doing because we still had a gift to hand out. Michael said he would explain once everyone received theirs. Well, He was handing out a peanut to everyone. My sister thought it was a contest to see who got the biggest one :)
Once Michael had handed a peanut to everyone, he proceeded to say, "Ok, now hold your peanut in your hand for safe keeping, some of you may have noticed that Ashley is NOT holding one in her hand, that is because she carrying 'OUR' peanut in a very special safe place!" It didn't take long for everyone, especially our moms to figure out what was going on! :) Lots of tears were shared, and hugs!! We had a hard time keeping in from family for almost a WHOLE month!!!

So everyone has been keeping their "peanut" in a safe place, but also in a place where they can see it on a regular basis as a reminder to be praying that this little life would continue to grow stronger and stronger!

We decided to keep it with just family for awhile, and a few close friends who were joining us is praying.
Peanut is scheduled to make an appearance sometime around August 1!! This happens to be my cousin Kaitlyn's birthday and she is pretty excited to have the chance to share her birthday!!

As we approached our 18-20 week ultrasound, the emotional waves of anxiety began to come our way again. We were told this may happen as we approach the time in pregnancy that we lost McNugget. Which for us was the ultrasound. God was SO good to surround us with many loved ones praying! We were receiving notes, emails phone calls and texts throughout the week which helped take the anxiety away. One good friend sent us some scripture,


1 God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.
2 Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea;

10 Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth.

These verses reminded me that no matter how the appointment went, as one of God's children, I know He had His arms around me, and that everything He would bring our way would ULTIMATELY bring Glory to His name!

So, March 2, was our ultrasound, we went in, and had decided a month earlier that we would request the tech we had the first time. We needed to have positive associations with her and her ultrasound room. She was a very compassionate lady, and was aware of our anxiousness. She gooped me up, turned on the monitor and this was the FIRST image we saw, and making it the first picture she took!!

Talk about a Gift from God!!! Peanut was laying in the perfect spot for a profile shot!!! We had fun watching Peanut get annoyed as the tech tried to get baby to move so she could do measurements. We had a blast during this ultrasound!! I had told her that Peanut was probably sleeping, as this is when I usually am in the car singing along to the radio, so this was probably nap time! We DID find out Peanut's gender, and we will share...eventually!! We would like to enjoy this with our family for now, and then announce at showers! We are just so excited that Peanut was growing nice and strong, and 2 days ahead of schedule :) According to measurements anyway!

I was out shopping for myself the other day, and the lady I was with, she knows, along with everyone else, that we have called this baby 'peanut' since we first found out. She was browsing through baby clothes, and found this onesie!! Spelling may be wrong!!

We love it because it can work for both a boy or a girl!! I really just loved how it says 'LIL' Peanut' How perfect!!!!

For those who have been praying for us, we are truly GRATEFUL!!! For both your prayers, and for our God who has just showered His love on us through Peanut and all of you!!!

We know that God has a plan for Peanut, and we are excited to watch that plan unravel.

1 Samuel 1:27

I prayed for this child, and the LORD has granted me what I asked of him.

Friday, January 6, 2012

Our Christmas Adventures...

Welp, Michael and I decided to stay home this Christmas, well I guess Christmas Eve is always just us because we go to the Cornerstone service, and then down to Jolly Holiday Lights in Des Moines. By the way, if you are looking for a fun tradition, this is GREAT!! It's a fundraiser for the make a wish foundation!! It's something we enjoy, and Cooper likes riding in the car looking at everything as well! Well, we have a tradition, when we return from the lights, we get a warm drink, cocoa, or cider, and then open one gift. This gift is ALWAYS lounge-wear, to wear that night and all day Christmas Day. We look forward to when we have kids, and we will draw names to see who gets to pick our "jammies" for who :) Right now it's us, but we enjoy it. We are excited for the day that we welcome our children into "our" traditions! It is very important to me that we have traditions now, and not just wait until we have kids. That way, when our kids grow up and move out and start their own traditions, we will still do ours.
We enjoyed just staying at home, trying out our new Kuerig machine, which we LOVE! Thanks Nancy!! It was just nice to relax, especially before spending the rest of the week driving up north to Mason, and then to KC.
Our travels started with a hiccup! A funny story, involving Cooper, Police, and Peta. We had decided that since my cousin Ryan from Colorado was doing a wrestling tournament in Waverly, we would head that direction to cheer him on. Welp, as many of you know, Cooper LOVES the car. I took him for a potty walk, cracked the windows, and gave him water. Remember this has been an exceptionally warm winter, so it was about 50 degrees, and sunny. After 1 1/2 hours in the gym, I hear my license plate read over the intercom. My first thought was someone was taunting the dog. So I got up, saw an officer at the door, but just kept walking to the car. Got to the car and Cooper was asleep. When he saw us he got all excited, so we decided that we would just take off. I went back inside to get our stuff and to let our family know we were leaving when the officer and the announcer were getting ready to announce my car again. I told them the car was mine, and the guy was relieved. He kinda laughed, and said, that some young girl had called the POLICE!! yeah, police! She was concerned about Cooper, because he was now out of water. The officer said she was refusing to leave the car. So he told her he would talk to the owners. He had no problem with Cooper being in the car, mostly because conditions were fine. It was a beautiful day, and Cooper didn't seem distressed, but rather comfortable when he approached the car. He kept complimenting Cooper, and saying how his boss has Wheatens, and how is next dog will be a wheaten.
So the officer and I went to the car, because I told him we were just going to leave. He reassured us that we could stay. He told the story to Michael, and Michael asked if the girl was with Peta. The officer chuckled, and said he wasn't sure, she sounded really young, but maybe the mom was. After the officer had been in his car for a while, he returned to our car and told Michael that he had called the girl, and told her everything was ok. The girls response, and he said it was word for word.."I'm so glad to hear that, I'm just really big into PETA!!!" So that's the story of Cooper spicing up our trip!!
The rest of the traveling was nice. We enjoyed getting family pictures with the May's and the McHenry's, and we can't wait to see them!
The week of Christmas and New Years, was hard, but not as hard as I had anticipated, and I know that is due to many of you who have just showered us in prayers. And for that we are VERY grateful! God was so good to just wrap His arms around us that entire week. And our families were very sensitive to our thoughts in things that were said and done.
We had busy week, so we celebrated New Year's with New York! So we could go to bed! We look forward to what's in store for 2012! This beautiful weather has been such a blessing, and the year is just beginning!!

I'll try to do better at posting, things were just crazy this last month!

Monday, December 5, 2011

one more to go :)

Well, I just really want to start out with a HUGE THANKS to those of you who were praying for us over Thanksgiving! We could definitely feel your prayers. I had a few moments of tears, but for the most part it went really well! Seeing the Plaza lights were a great help too!!

Most of the McHenry gals!

Brian and Laurie with the girls!

Brian and Laurie :)

Michael and Myself! :)

Here some of the fireworks, it was so pretty and a ton of fun!! Lots of people too!! We saw a small dance performance, and heard TONS of great Christmas music! It's just a fun time!!

All in all, it was great to share this with Michael's brother and his family! We enjoy traditions, and I feel this will not be the last time we venture out for this event!!

Brian, Laurie and their girls, have been very gracious to open their home to not just us, but to our dog Cooper as well!! It's been fun staying with them. Laurie and I get much joy out of watching the guys have their brother time!! So refreshing!!

We had a wonderful meal before heading out to the Plaza Lights, which Mom Mac prepared!! It was DELICIOUS!!! She does such a wonderful job making sure EVERYONE has an item of almost favorite on the table!!! Thanks for the wonderful meal!!

Welp, that's all for this post!
Thanks for reading!!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Being Thankful!!

This morning, well it started earlier than any other morning for this gal! Cooper needed to be in Ames by 7:30, for a haircut, and I needed to get some last minute stuff for Thanksgiving. Welp, Michael left around 5:30, meaning it was pretty much pointless for me to go back to bed. So, I got out my women's devotional bible, which I finally found what box it was packed in just 2 days ago! I was encouraged as I looked at the tabs I had put on some of the pages, because they contained verses that I found very helpful, MANY years ago!
The passage that REALLY brought me to tears was:
Romans 5:3-5
3 Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance' 4 perseverance, character; and character, hope. 5 And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us.

God has really been teaching me so much about myself, more so in the last week. I have never realized how prideful I was, both in my relationship to God, and my status as "married". It's almost as if I thought that was a pass to all things good, no problems, or hurdles, especially when it came to having a family. I would find myself getting angry, not at people, but at their situations in life, and wondering why it worked for them to have what I though I should have. God has really been humbling me, changing my mindset when I see a young girl pregnant, or finding out people I know who are not married, or who are but have no desire for children, are having kids. It's amazing what God will use to change one's heart. Oh how I wish I could have learned this a different way, but as I read in Romans, this 'suffering' will not stay a suffering, but will ultimately produce HOPE!!

As we head into the holiday season, I pause to give thanks for MANY things!
1- My God!! He's SO big and he sees the BIG picture, and is daily revealing new things to me.
2- MICHAEL!! God sure knew what He was doing when He lead us together! Michael has had SO much compassion and patience towards me. I am SO grateful he CHOOSES to love me daily!! even when I know it can be tough! :)
3- Family!! Where would we be without them?!?!? I wouldn't want to know!! We are so blessed to have such a wonderful family!!
4-Friends! God has greatly blessed us with AMAZING people to love us!! and to allow us to fellowship with!!
5- Work! I really do love my jobs!! My kiddos, teens, teach me SO much!! The more I do long term shifts, as in overnights for my family, I have a much more appreciation for them! These parents do so much to ensure their kids have a great life, and it's just amazing!!
6- Health! Don't know what to put with this! :)
7- Church Family! Our church, which is where Team McHenry debuted, has been such a blessing to us! Striving to minister to us, and allow us to give back with our time! We enjoy working with the older 3 year-olds!

We have so much more to be thankful for. Christmas, and what it symbolizes is a BIG one!!

Please keep us in your prayers, especially has we enter the holiday season, I will be seeking out prayer, particularly in the next few weeks!!

~Team McHenry~

Thursday, November 17, 2011

oh the anticipation....

Well, the holidays are quickly approaching, and now the emotional waves are back, almost fierce now. All of our plans for the holidays are now VASTLY different!! We were going to host Thanksgiving, because I would have been 35 weeks pregnant. Now we are not expecting, and we have decided not to stay home. I really wanna see the lighting of the Plaza down in Kansas City, something BEAUTIFUL to help with the way I am feeling. I think that the worst part of this is just anticipating what each day will bring. I hope and pray I don't become an emotional basket-case and ruin what should be a fun time with everyone. I really almost feel like staying home, but I also want to be around people. I just REALLY DO NOT want people treating Michael and I like we are fragile, that sometimes makes it worse. Sometimes I feel like people are just waiting to see me cry. Now I know that's not true, it's just how I feel sometimes. I am really hoping and praying that when people see us, especially during the holidays, they don't try to ask us how we're doing and coping, I would rather people just wish us a Happy Thanksgiving, Great to see you!, Merry Christmas! and Happy New Year!!! This will help out TREMENDOUSLY!! I understand people are curious, and they care, and want us to know they care, but during this time, being around people we haven't seen in a while, I don't want to have to hold back tears because I am trying to talk about how I am coping. It's already going to be hard.
I do enjoy getting little notes of encouragement. I understand it's tough for people to know how to engage, but just a hug or a pat on the back, speaks VOLUMES!!! We don't need heavy words, or people trying to console us, especially when they have no idea what's going on in our heads. Just letting us know you're thinking about us, and praying is great!
Today has just really been one of those days. Tons of emotions, had to stay home from work! Granted it was a SUPER short work day, we're talking maybe 2 hours :)
Thank you to those who have and continue to lift us up in your prayers, please DO NOT stop!! We need them! At least I know I REALLY do!