September 24, 2007

Apel July/August/September Update

Alright! You can all rest easy. We are still alive. A lot has happened since our last hang in here while we fill you in.

First, on July 25th, Kirby had surgery to correct some complications brought on by Asher's delivery. Most of you know the details, but for the sake of having a public blog, I will keep it pretty vague. She was kept in the hospital for 3 days. And for the first 40 hours, she had no pain medication!! Her wounds and pain were that or worse of having a baby--and yet no pain medication. She is the strongest person in the world. The nurse had made a mistake and 4 nurses after her had missed it...but then she got Demoral for the next 36 so it made up for it!

We were released that Saturday night and able to catch some of Kirby's family reunion. Kirby has been healing really well ever since. She had one follow up appointment almost two weeks later and the doctor said that she was ahead of schedule -- normal Kirby.

The next major thing was our house. On August 2nd we closed on our first home (see "We Buy Ugly Houses" below). It was a complicated, but exciting process. It's been a ride the last two months with this house. It's over 50 years old and had never been updated so we decided to do some renovating before we moved in. We knew it would never get done if we waited until after we moved in. And if we were going to put some money into it for the sake of 'resale value', we would prefer to get to live in those updates.

A couple from our church, Duane & Marylou Breiger, were gracious enough to let us stay with them for a few weeks -- which turned into about seven -- while our house was being finished. Words cannot express our gratitude to you guys. We love you. We're so thankful for the friendship we share. Thank you, thank you, thank you for all that you have done for us over the last 2 months.

Lance and Blake Czajkowski did a lot of the remodeling and were awesome (if you need anything done let us know and we'll get you Lance's digits). They took out walls, added ceiling joists, created custom cabinets, and dealt with all of our requests and changes.

And Mike Garratt knows a lot more than just chicken -- this guys is a machine and knows a ton about remodeling! And I cannot get away without mentioning the faithfulness and hard work of Tommy Clements and Jonathan Houston and their wives for letting us have them for many nights into the wee hours of the morning.

Thanks also to my brother, Cary, for all that you did and Aaron for helping tile our countertops.

My Dad also made many late-night trips to help us with the tile, sink, gas problems and a lot of other things. We love and are so thankful to you ALL!

Shipley Wedding

A month ago, on September 2, our best friend, Cate married Ryan Out-of-Shapley. (Sorry Ryan Helena Boy spirit never dies.) It was the most beautiful wedding EVER (says Kirby)! The entire family was so honored to be in the wedding: Kirby was the Matron of Honor, I was an Usher and Asher was a "ringbearer" who was pulled down the aisle in a wagon--he did great!

He was the cutest thing and smiled at everyone the whole way down.

Pretty soon you can check out all of the wedding pics here.

We were so happy to welcome Ryan into the family, since Kirby is like the sister that Cate's never had. I could go on and on and never quite capture how we value her our friendship with these was Kirby's toast at their Rehearsal Dinner:

Ryan, you know how much of a gift this girl truly is. I don't have to tell you that. She has been the best friend a girl could have--and how much more she will be for you as she was created to specifically be your helper! You will have the most loyal friend and devoted wife a man can find.

For several years everywhere we went we were known as, "Cate and Kirby"...actually we didn't go many places without each other. We were pretty much inseperable.

Then two years ago, when I got married and it became "Charlie and Kirby", Cate graciously stepped down from the title of my best "best" friend, to my best "girl" friend. Tomorrow night at 7:30, I look forward to doing the same.

I've often told Cate how easy Charlie makes my job. I can't help but desire to do anything but love him by the way that he loves and honors me. When someone is constantly considering you better then himself-truly modeling Christ in your home by putting your needs and desires before their own-you can't help but love them and constantly try to out bless them in return.

I know that you will treat her the same. I've seen you treat her this way. And because of this, I have great peace and much thankfulness in passing on my title. I'm confident that now Cate has her "Charlie" (as he's been her standard since I met him.)

I realize that I keep comparing you to my husband, but this is the biggest compliment I can pay anyone. How thankful I am that she's never settled for anything less than an equivelant to Charlie.

Ryan, I love you. For the way you love our Cate and the way you love our Lord.

You have my word that you will never have to worry about Cate bad mouthing you to me. I can't imagine her ever doing that now. But years down the road, I want you to know that I will forever do all that I can to encourage and build up your marriage with my actions and words, and everything in my power to encourage her to love and submit to you like she loves Jesus.

I want all of the rest of you here tonight to know-if you don't already-just how much the Lord really is the author of this marriage-I can testify to that.

I'm so thankful to the Lord for Ryan. As we've been praying for Cate's "future husband" over the last several years-long before he even came around-He's been shaping Ryan into the man that will love and lead Cate under Christ's leadership. The very qualities that we've been praying for, the Lord has given Ryan.

We've prayed for someone who would be gentle yet bold in dealing with Cate, someone who would be careful with their words, and cautious in their decision making, someone who would be strong enough in their convictions that they would honor the Lord before seeking to please Cate. I've seen all of these displayed through Ryan...and yet none of these are truly just from Ryan, but what the Lord has done in him.

Ryan and Cate, I can't wait to see how God uses your marriage and your family to show others that Christ's love is still real and relevant today.

I'm passing on my title of "Cate's best best friend" to you, Ryan. I know that you will fill this role with much care and much more completion as the two of you become one. As you grow together in your love for Jesus you truly will be inseperable.

We're soooo IN

Last weekend, Kirby's family came in to help us get the house "move-in" ready.

The MVP goes to her mom, who did all the dirty work. Bathrooms.(I wish we had before and after pics b/c you had to see it to believe the magic that she worked.) Windows. Screens. And after all that-she mowed the lawn!

Both her brothers moved boxes and furniture to their various rooms. Todd completely transformed out landscape with all the cutting, trimming, and tidying up he did with the yard and trees. Thank you, Todd! It looks GREAT! Jordan also helped Todd with some yard work and swept off the roof.

Kyle and Kirby were able to finish setting up the kitchen and Asher's room so that we could finally spend the night in our new home the next evening. We're so thankful you were here to help us get going.

Thank you to Kirby's family for getting us in! We appreciate you all so much!

As of last Sunday, we have been living in our house over a week now!

It's good to be home.

Thank you to all of our many friends and family who helped us in so many ways and stayed up long hours, working really hard.

Asher has been doing so much and growing up right before our eyes, but he will get his own post. SOON...