Sunday, October 23, 2011

How Do You Say Ania?

Our little one has finally arrived! We wanted to share a little bit more about her name and her birth. It took a little while, but all are doing well.

Last summer we took a vacation to Hawaii. While there we bumped into three moms at the beach who all had little ones that were Eva's age. While Eva played, Corrie started talking to one of the moms and found out they were all from Poland. Adam's family has a Polish background, so we started asking her about popular Polish names. The first one she shared was Ania, and Corrie and I were both pretty sure we had found our girl name. Ania (more commonly spelled and pronounced like Anya ... the Russian version), comes from the Hebrew name of Hannah which means grace. We know that we are always in need of God's grace, so we are happy to have this little daily Polish reminder as part of our family. Her middle name, Louise, was the name of Adam's late grandmother on his Mom's side. We're happy to honor her as well.

As for the birth story ... we'll be sharing limited details here. All you moms can get the play by play from Corrie :) Last we posted, we were still waiting. Literally within a few hours of sharing that news, and after drinking 2 ounces of castor oil, contractions started. Both of our parents excitedly made their way down, but the labor had subsided by 10pm. Corrie went to sleep, but was kindly awoken at 2am with more contractions. Around 6:30am we headed to the hospital just to get checked for peace of mind and they admitted us on the spot. Corrie labored in UCSD's Birthing Center ... the only one found in a hospital west of the Mississippi. The place is kind of like a medical day spa. The staff was incredible and we felt extremely lucky to have a Polish nurse who was with us every moment. A volunteer doula was also on hand the entire time as well. At 5:17pm, little Ania Louise was born!

Ania nearly slept through the night and we all got some much needed rest. We hope to come home from the hospital tonight or tomorrow morning. Until then, enjoy the pictures. Thank you for all your love, support and prayers through this process. So grateful to have such a great community.

Special thanks to Erica Ruse and Mai Pham for watching the newest big sister, Eva Jean, yesterday. The two just met for the first time!

Friday, October 21, 2011

The Waiting Place

Corrie was due on October 15th. It is now October 21st and the baby still has not arrived. Like a fine wine, roasted turkey, or aged cheese ... some things just take a bit of time. We have both been learning how to live in the moment. Not that we really want to learn a life lesson right now, but we have enjoyed long walks, visiting every children's attraction in San Diego and just enjoying some calm with Eva and friends before the storm of Baby #2.

This morning Corrie had her midwife appointment, so here is the latest. In order to deliver in the Birthing Center at UCSD Hillcrest, she must start labor before next Sunday. We're keeping our fingers crossed and  hoping that baby comes before then. If not, she is scheduled to be induced next Sunday morning. She will receive regular stress tests until then to make sure all are healthy ... and today's results were great.

So we continue to sit and wait.

I also think my mother may have a hysterical pregnancy going on. She likes to text and send emails and do fire drills with my dad as they "pretend" to leave for the hospital. Provides good comic relief, and reminds us how excited everyone is for the arrival of our little one.

And Corrie just took a shot of castor oil. No joke.


Excerpt from Oh! The Places You'll Go by Dr. Seuss

The Waiting Place … for people just waiting.

Waiting for a train to go or a bus to come, or a plane to go or the mail to come, or the rain to go or the phone to ring, or the snow to snow or waiting around for a Yes or No or waiting for their hair to grow. Everyone is just waiting.

Waiting for the fish to bite or waiting for wind to fly a kite or waiting around for Friday night or waiting, perhaps, for their Uncle Jake or a pot to boil, or a Better Break or a string of pearls, or a pair of pants or a wig with curls, or Another Chance. Everyone is just waiting.

No! That’s not for you!
Somehow you’ll escape all that waiting and staying. You’ll find the bright places where Boom Bands are playing. With banner flip-flapping, once more you’ll ride high! Ready for anything under the sky. Ready because you’re that kind of a guy!

Eva meeting Elmo at SeaWorld ... she kind has a crush.

First time with paints at the New Children's Museum.

Riding a turtle at the San Diego Zoo.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Tic Tock

We are still waiting for our second little pumpkin to arrive. Never easy to live in the in between, but isn't that the case for most of life? We are attempting to take in all that a San Diego fall has to offer. Literally had a beach day last weekend. Corrie had her last day of work on Friday and is no hurry to deliver this baby. Due date is on Saturday. I keep thinking she will deliver early. We'll see!

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Saturday, September 10, 2011

Summing up Summer

A lot of ground to cover. Life has been full and change is in the air around the Klekowski household.

Since our last post ...
  • Remember that trip I took to Haiti!? Our church did a huge effort to help Children of the Nations start a ministry there to children living at the epicenter of the earthquake. We hoped to maybe raise $100,000 ... we ended up raising nearly $250,000!! Corrie and I learned a ton through the experience and were blown away by everyone's generosity.
  • In May, Corrie took a new job as an employment attorney at Paul, Plevin, Sullivan, & Connaughton LLP. After several years at a smaller firm, Corrie was ready for a change and wanted to focus her practice. Though the job is a bit more demanding, she enjoys having a much smaller commute and really loves working downtown.
  • In June, we took a much needed vacation with some friends to Maui. Eva loved the hiking backpack as she got to see waterfalls that were "gorgeous" ... her words, not mine :)
  • This has been the first year since 2005 that I have not visited the continent of Africa, but Corrie and I still got to see some big dreams come true. Several years ago, Corrie connected with an amazing Malawian human rights attorney. The two of them came up with the idea to host a human rights clinic in a local village. The goal was to help educate and empower people about their basic rights and teach them what to do when they are violated (which, sadly, happens a lot). Through a lot of planning, a team of passionate people from our church hosted the first clinic in July! In addition, I had an idea for creating an Intern Exchange program for college students between our church and our sister church in Malawi. Four Americans and four Malawians swapped lives for a summer and their lives will never be the same. It was an eye opening and amazing experience for all involved. Corrie and I also got to host Pastor Sean (of Flood Malawi) and his wife for a few days as well.                                                                        
  • We attended several weddings and I got to officiate two of them ... one of the highlights of my job!
  • We once again entered the US Open Sandcastle Competition and took 2nd place. Though I still think we should have taken home the prize, it was a blast to spend the day building something out of nothing. Though she probably should have rested, Corrie joined the team with a 6 month old baby in her belly.                                                                     
  • The summer started with a change for Corrie and ends with a change for me. After 12 incredible years of college ministry (I started doing this as a freshmen in college!), I will no longer be a College Pastor at the end of this month. The reality of this change has not sunk in and though I am so grateful for the hundreds of students that I have gotten to know over the years, I am excited to move on to help our church pursue new endeavors. For several years we have been talking about expanding our church through new campuses and it is looking like we will be headed in that direction over the next year. This change will free me up to help lead the charge. Our College Group is in great hands. Along with an incredible volunteer team, a gifted guy I have been training (Adam Wright) for the past year and a half will be taking over.
  • Corrie just turned 30 yesterday and I follow on September 22nd. Eva turns 2 on October 4th.                                                     
  • Last, but certainly not least, Baby #2 will arrive (hopefully) sometime around October 15th. Though our hands will be full, we can't wait for the new addition. We'll keep you posted regarding all the exciting details of his or her (we both think her) arrival.

Just writing all this is making me tired. Corrie and I believe in living life to the full, but are learning the importance of rest as well. Thanks for journeying along with us.

In other breaking news ... Eva is starting to potty train. She took her first poop today and exclaimed, "It's a snake!" I think we're in for a ride with this one!

God bless,

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Eggs That Cost Me Nothing

Above is the evidence of my latest attempt to get one good picture of my moving-non-stop-furrowed-brow-goofball-girl-who-likes-to-color-on-her-forehead-and-in-her-ears.
Okay, well, first, I’m pregnant. 3.5 months along. Due October 15th. Feeling great. Not going to find out gender. Very excited. Hope we can handle another crazy monkey in the house.
Second, Adam is back from Haiti. It has been an adjustment to reconcile “normal” life here with the images and stories he witnessed there. He has been wise and intentional about taking the time to process those experiences.
The result of his trip is that Flood (our church) has decided to commit to helping Children of the Nations build a school in Haiti. As part of this commitment, Flood is attempting to raise $100,000 by Easter. More info here.
Adam and I feel strongly burdened to participate significantly in this campaign. I won’t recount all the moments or thoughts or urgings that swirl together to make up a conviction. But the result of the last few months is that we feel convicted to give an amount to the project that really requires us to sacrifice.
It is less about the amount, more about what it costs us to give. Looking through the bible recently I was reminded of how often God asks us to give to the point of our own discomfort. Like David says in Samuel 2:24, “I will not sacrifice to the Lord, my God, burnt offerings that cost me nothing.” Or, for example, in Mark 12, Jesus watches people putting money into the temple treasury. Many rich people put in large gifts, and then a poor widow puts in two small coins. Jesus says of her, “this poor widow has put more into the treasury thank all the others. They gave out of their wealth; but she, out of her poverty, put in everything – all she had to live on.”
It is easy for me to give out of my excess and think myself generous for the gift. I am always the rich people giving out of their wealth large gifts that cost them nothing. Reflecting on this, Adam and I wanted this gift to be significant to us personally. So, we committed to a spending freeze for all of Spring. Basically our loose rules are that we are allowed to purchase necessities, but can’t purchase things that we just “want.” The money we save, goes to Haiti. And it should hurt.
Living on less has allowed me to see how little of what we spend is really necessary. Most everything I want I realize after pausing and thinking about it, that I really don’t want that much. Most of my wants are fed by impulsive desires just to soothe or reward myself and not by a true appetite for the item desired. To look those impulses in the eye and refuse to indulge them has been empowering. Though, I must admit that gift cards have come in handy these last few weeks. And it also helps that I am pregnant and therefore uninterested in new clothes.
I have also realized how much opportunity there is to share and re-use. Most of the things we want, we can find to borrow for free. If you want it, chances are someone has it and is not using it.
So, the result of all of this is twofold: (1) I realize that I can’t out-give God. Even when I try to sacrifice, it doesn't feel like sacrifice. It feels more like a gift to me than from me. (2) We need someone to donate plastic Easter eggs so Eva can have an Easter egg hunt in the backyard.
And if you happen to drop a gift card in one of the eggs for Eva’s parents, that will be accepted too. Or better yet, drop a Benjamin in an egg and we will add it to our gift for Haiti.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Thoughts from Haiti

I just arrived home from Haiti. I wrote this for my church's blog and thought I'd share with you all as well. To read more about our visit click here.

I’m tired. Run down. Seen too much. Overwhelmed. The team is getting a little delirious. By the end of each day, we surprisingly experience a lot of laughter. Probably a way to cope with all that we’ve seen each day.

What do you do with the overwhelming stench that hits you when you enter a tent city? What do you do with the heartbreak of a girl who lost her entire family in the quake? What do you do with the sideways cross painted in the voodoo temple?

The people here have endured much. The human spirit is amazingly resilient. The people want to work. They want to care for their families. I have been impressed by the way these families dress sharp and have their hair done. They have not lost their dignity.

Yesterday we attended a good sized Pentecostal church. It was definitely an interesting experience. At one point, our entire team was on the church floor as the bishop poured (literally poured!) oil on each head and asked us to bless them. 700 people later, we had finished the job! While this was foreign to me, when I got past my own insecurities and just viewed it as an opportunity to pray, I was amazed by the way God allowed me to pray on their behalf. I was especially moved each time I prayed for a young man. I could tangibly feel the burden for these young guys to step up and lead their future families and communities courageously. Looking into their eyes I saw so many possibilities.

Today we are attempting to finalize the plans for Children of the Nation’s work in Haiti. We are finalizing board members and formalizing partnerships with other agencies so that together, we can offer the best care possible.

We just got freed from a traffic jam due to a strike. A drive that should have taken 30 minutes took 3 hours. Unbelievable.

I am tired. Ready to return home. Excited to see my family once again, and not looking forward to the long flight ahead.

Before I move forward to visions and plans for what this means for me and my community at home, I want to sit in this moment. To remember these people. To remember what I’ve seen. To be still and know that He is God.

See you soon,
Pastor Adam

Sunday, March 6, 2011


I just put Eva down to bed. Said our prayers. Said goodbye. Said I love you a hundred times.

I'm leaving for Haiti in a couple of hours.

The past week has been really tough. When Eva's heart condition returned and we found ourselves back in the ER again, it felt like everything had gotten tipped upside down. I felt disoriented, confused, frustrated and tired. Corrie and I then had hectic weeks that kept us preoccupied, so we haven't really sunk into this new reality with Eva, probably still in shock and denial about it all.

Yesterday, I found myself hosting a seminar speaker at a conference our church was putting on. Sitting on the floor in a packed out room, God began to speak. Talking about desire, spiritual growth, disappointment, grief and loss, I found myself confronted with all the questions and feelings I had been avoiding all week.

What do I desire for Eva?
Am I able to live within the disappointment of these unmet desires?
Have I truly surrendered these desires to God? Have I grieved?

Listening to your daughter's racing heart is unbearable. Watching her cry for help in the emergency room is heart wrenching. Why the pain? Why the sorrow?

Yesterday I learned that it is within the great tensions of life that God most truly reveals Himself and invites us to grow with Him. Life and death. Joy and sorrow. Abundance and scarcity. God hasn't abandoned me, my family or my little girl. He grieves with us. Hurts with us. Laughs with us.

Though there is still much to process, I find myself leaving for another adventure and entering into a foreign place filled with despair, sorrow and loss. What does God have in store for me in Haiti? What does He have in store for my church? What does He have in store for you?

I have an odd job. One that finds me on the college campuses of San Diego and flying to the earthquake ravaged city of Port au Prince. There is so much pain in the world. So much hurt. Yet as I laid my little girl down to sleep and she reached up her little head to give me one final kiss, I am reminded that there is so much beauty. So much joy.

Life is full of confusing tensions, and I hope that I can continue to walk the meandering and difficult road within all of them. Please pray for me and my team while we are away. Pray that God would give us a vision for how our church can best serve the Haitian people ... and while you're at it, send some love Corrie's way :) She's just a phone call or email away. I'll be home on Tuesday, March 16th.

Au revoir!

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

A Brighter Day

Eva's little heart is doing much better today. She no longer has a fever, so hopefully she won't have any more episodes. We're scheduled to see her heart doctor in a few weeks, so hopefully we'll get some better answers then. She seems to be feeling much better ... sleeping like a champ and starting to eat again. Corrie is doing better too. She went back to work today.

Thanks for all the prayers!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Eva's Annual Health Update :)

Hey everyone,

Can't believe it was just a year ago that we were posting like crazy about Eva's health ... well, sadly, here's the latest update.

On Sunday we took her to the ER because she was in a heart episode. On the way there, we feel like we witnessed a miracle as we could physically see her coloring change as her heart went back to normal all on its own. They still admitted us, did some tests and discharged us with increased dosage on one of her heart meds. Corrie and I are both really bummed that this heart thing hasn't gone away, but thankful we didn't have to stay in the hospital. It appears that a high fever is a trigger for her heart issue.

Yesterday, Corrie woke up feeling really sick, so she stayed home from work. We still had our babysitter show up to help her out. Around noon, we noticed that her coloring had changed once again and that she was shaking like she was really cold. She wasn't acting fussy or irritated, just a little dazed. Whenever we have seen these symptoms she is normally in an episode. We checked her heart and she was fine, so Corrie got on the phone with her doctors. Several hours later, neither her pediatrician nor her heart doctor was too concerned (though we still are!). The entire funkiness with Eva lasted about an hour.

Last night, Eva slept beautifully and her fever has reduced a bit. Corrie will be with her today.

We don't know what this all means. Doctors aren't being super helpful, but luckily she has been in good spirits. The only challenge right now is that she isn't eating. She's been like that since Friday, so we're concerned on that end. She's drinking liquids, but that's about it. Corrie also still feels really ill ... and I leave for Haiti and the Dominican Republic Sunday night.

If you get a chance, could you pray for the following?

- For Eva's fever to disappear
- For Eva's appetite to return
- For wisdom from the doctor's ... to discover why she gets these cold spells
- For Corrie's health to return
- For emotional sanity for our family :)

We're holding together the best we can. It just feels like Eva's a little ticking time bomb .... we thought this was all behind us, so it's tough to open the door to all of this once again.

We love you all and thank you for your support.

Adam & Corrie