Caleigh’s birth story – sort of


When it comes to hearing birth stories, there are two types of people: those who want to know every single detail, and those who don’t. I’m guessing the majority of my friends are found in the latter group. So if you really want a play-by-play of how Caleigh miraculously entered the world, just email me. For the rest of you, here’s the abridged version: It hurt. A lot. It was worth every ounce of pain, of course. Because after all that hurting came my healthy baby girl! And the rest, as they say, is history.


I brushed over some of those birth details, I know. But I’d be remiss to gloss over what the Lord reminded me through that experience.

20150831-DSC_0013In the hospital room where Caleigh was born, there were two picture frames on the wall – one containing the word Hope, the other Strength. I remember sitting in the hospital bed, waiting for the induction medicine to kick in. I knew that a pain-filled night was ahead of me.

Strength Hope

I saw those words on the wall and thought to myself, Oh, what good reminders! When I’m in a world of hurt here in a few hours, I’ll just look over and remember to be strong. To have hope. That’ll get me through. I can do this!


Before I even finished that thought, another tidal wave of a thought crept up and overtook the first: No, Ang, that’s wrong! Those two words in and of themselves will do nothing for you. You’ve forgotten something. The Source!


Truths like, “The Lord is my strength” and “God is my rock, in whom I take refuge” began to run through my head. Of course! What was I thinking? It’s not me. I can’t do this alone. It’s about Him! He is my help and my hope.


There came a point during labor that I just wasn’t sure if I could physically go on. I remember saying, “Oh, Lord, help me!” My midwife didn’t miss a beat. She said, “He is helping you, honey. He’s here!”


Such truth in those simple words. He was there! Even in moments of great physical pain, He is present. He is my Strength and my Hope!


After Caleigh’s birth, a friend visited us in the hospital and dropped off a gift. It was a CD called Roots for the Journey by Yancy. One of the songs repeats the phrase “My hope is in the Lord.” Oh, what a blessed relief! I absolutely cannot do life on my own. It’s only by His strength.


So very thankful for my beautiful baby. For simple reminders of His truth. For opportunities to live those truths out. And for a patient Savior.

Caleigh Elise

Our sweet baby girl finally decided to make her debut – 10 days late! Whew! We are so thankful that Ang had a much healthier pregnancy this time around and that we’re now a family of 5!

Without further ado, meet Caleigh Elise Mitchener!
She was born August 31 at 4:55am. She weighed in at a hefty 9 pounds and 22 inches.
We are in love!20150901-DSC_0032

It’s a Girl!

sanda-0124Big news! Baby #3 is a girl! We are so excited for this new addition to our growing family!

Ang and baby are doing well as of now. At the last sonogram, the ultrasound technician said baby girl’s got a head full of hair! Ang’s blood pressure is continuing to rise slightly. She’s also taking even more iron supplements to try to get her iron level up before giving birth, but we’re keeping an eye on things as we get closer to having the baby. We’re still looking at an August 21st due date.

It won’t be long now! Bring on the diaper changes, sleepless nights, cuddles and coos!

Now to think of a name…


“Are you excited, Noah? We’re going home in a few days!” Noah’s wide, cheesy grin indicated his enthusiasm as he quickly colored in another airplane on his countdown calendar. Soon, we’d be headed back to the States for an extended furlough full of raising support and adding another little minion to our family.

Finally! We’re going home!  Then I started thinking. Are we really headed home? No, not really. We’re just headed back to our precious families and to houses filled with memories of what home used to be for us.

Over the last four years, Noah has called four different houses in two different countries “home”. We haven’t lived in those places with any sense of permanence. We’ve held off hanging pictures and buying certain furniture because we knew we wouldn’t be settling there.

Even after three years in the Dominican, I still don’t know that I can call the DR “home”. There are amazing aspects to living in the Dominican. We’ve somewhat acclimated to DR life, but we aren’t Dominican. Can we ever really call this country full of beloved people “home”? The truth is, we’re living as strangers in a foreign country.

The past 14 days stateside have been strange, though, too. I keep forgetting that it’s OK to drink the tap water. It’s weird being able to throw the toilet paper in the toilet. (TMI? Sorry.) Vehicles (usually) follow traffic patterns. I don’t feel like I’m going to run a moto concho off the road at any moment. It feels odd to walk through the grass with bare feet. People aren’t as “friendly” here – you don’t walk into a room and say hello to every person within hearing distance. I’m beginning to feel a little like a stranger in my own country, too…

So where is home? It isn’t in the States, but it isn’t in the Dominican, either.

And then I remember something Paul declared several times throughout his writings. This world is not my home! I’m living as a foreigner and stranger on this earth. Neither the Dominican nor the US is my final destination. My true citizenship is in heaven! I’m so excited that someday I’ll be able to experience the place I truly call “home”.

Table for Five, Please

Surprise, surprise! The Mitchener family is growing by one!


We’re praising the Lord that our third little munchkin will arrive sometime in August. God’s timing is always perfect. We are already excited for all the adventures this new little life will surely bring to our family.

It looks as if we will be heading back to the States for the birth. With Ang’s history of preeclampsia, we honestly feel most comfortable seeing the midwife who delivered Leyton. Our plan is to extend our August furlough a bit as Angela won’t be allowed to travel after being 8 months pregnant. Ang and the boys will leave for the States in early July, and Scott will join a couple weeks later.

We’ll head back for another checkup here in the DR in a few weeks to find out the gender and make sure baby is still developing properly. Prayers appreciated as we prepare for the arrival of Baby Mitchener #3!

Breaking News – Freedom Missions Team Grows by One!

Introducing… our newest little missionary.

Leyton Reid Mitchener was born on February 3 at 8:59 am.
He weighed in at 7 pounds, 14 ounces and measured 21 inches long.

Things are finally starting to settle down here in the Mitchener household.  There has been some adjusting to life as a family of four, but Leyton has been such a great baby!  We are so blessed to have another healthy little guy.  He has already changed so much in these three weeks.  Noah loves his little brother already, and minus the occasional poke in the eye, he does a great job “helping” with Leyton.  Thankfully we’ve had help from our small group from the church.  They’ve been bringing us amazing, delicious meals – and these couples have busy families and responsibilities of their own. Talk about being the hands and feet of Jesus to us right when we need it.


It’s hard to believe we are three months out from moving to the Dominican, God willing!  We’ve gained a couple of new monthly supporters over the last week or so (yay!), but we still are in need of others to join our support team if we are to make it by our target date.  You can pray for us this weekend as we head to Illinois to present the ministry at a church there.

Scott and I are trying to learn more Spanish vocabulary and “basics” as we get ready for language training when we hit the ground at the end of May.  It’s been slow going, but we’re attempting to keep a good perspective on this area of our preparation.  Dominican Spanish is different in many ways from other Spanish-speaking countries’, so we won’t fully “get it” until we are immersed in it for awhile – this is another area in which we could really use your prayers and support.