Viewing entries tagged
We all had the post holiday blues today. We didn't really want to dive back into school work. So, we made brownies and homemade pizzas and that made everything a little better.
I think we all need a bit more babylike wonder in our world. If you are curious, you explore. If you want something, you find a way to get it. There's no fear. No second guessing. Just going for it.
Today, you decided to climb in the dishwasher. And then decided to throw dishes out. Never a thought crossed your mind. What if that glass breaks? Or what if I fall backwards?
Baby wonder, it's something special. And so is a sleeping baby.
You all were super excited to go to Mimi and Popi's annual New Year's day Parade and Kickball game. It is always a fun way to start the new year with family and friends. Having your grandparents and cousins living so close is such a gift. I hope you never take it for granted.
Birthday bath. In what feels like the blink of an eye, our baby girl is one. It's so ironic how I can simultaneously feel the brevity of time; yet, can't remember life without you. So grateful for you.
Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail.
They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. Lamentations 3:22-23
"But first, remember, remember, remember..." -C.S. Lewis
Today is world prematurity day. Our two youngest. Both preemies. One born almost 8 weeks early and the other 5 weeks early. One stayed in the NICU, while the other went home with us within three days of being born. Both miracles.
The challenges drew me closer to God and I felt Him during those valleys in the most beautiful way. It's amazing how our pain and darkness can make our eyes so much more open to His light. How we become aware of much more.
It's almost like we live in a fog when everything seems to be easy and just right. We let the wrong things consume our minds and our time. Our hearts and lives. I am striving to remember the valleys. To hold on to that longing. To the pain and fears He overcame. That need, that only He fills.
Today, and everyday, as I look at you both and I am reminded that His plans are perfect. His story unfolds through each one of us and I feel so thankful you are a part of my story. That He has used motherhood to bring me closer to Him. To make me more alive and more in awe.
You haven't wanted to play in this much lately. You are crawling all over the house and trying to balance by yourself now standing. You walk around holding onto furniture and I am certain it won't be long before you take off on your own. BUT....today, you crawled over and you wanted to get in. I am so grateful for you and the light you bring all of us.
You always have a football.
You are counting the days until you can play football for a team. We've told you that you can try out in middle school. I know this feels like an eternity to you. But, I also know just how fast the time will pass.
I worry about your sensitive spirit. But I know there are times we have to let our children fly. To be brave. To try. Win or lose. And be there no matter what the outcome. It's not easy. Not for this mama.
"I was faced with a dilemma - one so many of us face quite often; I could either wrestle my life and my kids and my house and our Christmas into something fantastic; something perfect... Or I could plant myself down right in the middle of the mess and realize that the mess is actually my life, the only one I'll ever get, the one I'm in danger of missing completely, waiting around for fantastic. That Christmas I chose to be present over perfect, and that's still what I choose today"-Shauna Niequist
I was watching the sun stream through the windows this weekend while she was taking a bath. I remember last year this time. Looking out this space; which at the time was a torn apart kitchen under construction. It was the start of the holiday season. It was also the start of me going on bed rest. The start of what would eventually become pre eclampsia and another premature birth.
Those days were difficult; yet a year later I look back with such gratitude. I felt like my whole world was a mess. We couldn't cook or do laundry in our home for months. I was going to weekly doctor appointments and in and out of the hospital for observation; all of you were with us for almost every appointment. I felt like I was letting our family down. I couldn't go out and do Christmas activities. I couldn't decorate or bake or do the things I loved to do with you.
Through it all, love poured from so many. Our church provided meals for us. Mita took our laundry and lovingly cleaned our clothes. I'll never forget the day that Mimi showed up and decorated our home. Hallmark Christmas movies played a lot and we spent time as a family snuggled in bed, doing all I could to stay healthy.
We were together.
It was a time that is normally busy but became unusually slow. It was a beautiful reminder in being present and together. I pray that I can take that slow and infuse it into our Christmas each year. I don't want to try and orchestrate a pretty picture of some perfection that doesn't exist. I want to cherish these days and hold onto what this season is truly about and I don't want to miss the light that He has so graciously brought into my life.
You needed to be nursed before we left for the soccer field. And then you fell asleep with ten minutes until we needed to leave. Big sissy also needed help with her hair. I was about to help her when I noticed this scene. The two of you. Our oldest and youngest. Often times I can feel overwhelmed with getting to where we need to be. Making sure I have everything for everyone. But in this moment I just paused. There's so much beauty in these days. I don't ever want to be too busy or too consumed to notice. To be grateful.
Yes, my love, you will be with them soon enough. Let's enjoy every minute of you right here by mama.
At 11 years old, she is wise and mature beyond her years; yet she is in no rush to grow up. I love the conversations we have as she is getting older. Last night, she came to my bed, where I was still awake tossing and turning. It was one of those nights that I had let worry get the best of me.
This has been a struggle for me most of my life. Worrying about the "what ifs" , that most often never present themselves. Worrying about the "hows" and "whens" of life. Not fully trusting in God and His plan; trying to find a way to control things myself. I know His truths and His love, but so often I give in to my own fears and anxiety.
My husband and I are open to our children about the weaknesses we struggle with. We want our children to see that God can overcome all. Last night, as we lay in bed, I shared with her all that was on my heart. I told her how I was praying for peace and that I wished I didn't worry; especially about some things that seem so silly. She held my hand and then shared with me the most beautiful words. There was a peace that came over me and I knew that God had used her to speak to me in that moment.
Today, I read these words from Francis Chan. "Worry implies that we don't quite trust that God is big enough, powerful enough or loving enough to take care of what's happening in our lives."
If you are someone that also struggles with worrying and fear, my prayer is that we will all remember our God is big enough for any worry we have. For any trial we will face. But, more than that, let's not forget that He loves us just the way we are. He created us, so who better to understand all that we are facing than Him? In all openness and transparency, this is easier said than done for me at times. My prayer, is to believe it and live it.
Something special is starting between them. I continue to learn so much mothering our four children. Being from a big family myself, I had no idea all my mom did to make us all feel loved. And sometimes no matter her efforts, I selfishly wanted more. Oh, the grace I know now. Had I only known it then. So many nights, I sit in silence feeling like I wasn't enough to them. Feeling like I've somehow not given one of them enough of me. God reminds me that He will fill any gap I can't . I wasn't made to do this on my own. I was made to love and that is all they need. He will give them the rest.
water and light. stops me every single time.
and this boy. oh, how i love his heart. what a blessing to have him to love and protect three sisters. such a gift to all of us.
The worries of life could be infinite; our health, our finances, our family, our relationships, our future. Through the years God has definitely shown me time and time again that He is in control, that I need to let go of worry and fear and trust solely in Him and His plan.
At 39 and pregnant with number four, there is a lot on my heart and mind. During our 3rd pregnancy I got really sick and our daughter was born almost 8 weeks premature. Those frightening hours have been making their way to the forefront of my mind; yet, I keep finding His peace amidst all the fears that want to take over. Life may not always go the way we envision. It will have its detours, but if we keep our eyes on Him, He will always point us to where we need to be.
I can’t stop thinking about the lyrics to the song called Captain by Hillsong United. Typically, I only share a portion of a song that is speaking to me, but today, there wasn’t a part I felt I could NOT share. I hope these words will speak to your heart as well. No matter what uncharted waters you are going through, always know, you are not alone.
Through waters uncharted my soul will embark
I'll follow Your voice straight into the dark
And if from the course You intend
Speak to the sails of my wandering heart
Like the wind
Clear the skies before me
And I'll glide this open sea
Like the stars
Will align my voyage
And remind me where I've been
And where I am going
Lost in the shallows amidst fear and fog
Your truth is the compass that points me back north
My soul's trusted Lord
All my allegiance is rightfully Yours
He is our only son; compassionate, caring, and sensitive. His heart is as pure as I know. His mind still so innocent.
As much as I know all of this, I also know the realities waiting in the world. The world that will want to change him. To change his heart and mind. There is so much this generation faces in their youth. It's not that past generations didn't have the same challenges, they just seem to come younger and stronger now. Addictions to so many things...drugs, alcohol, pornography, fame, gambling, material possessions. The list is infinite. It scares me how much corruption our children can be exposed to and how innocently it can happen. Its such a reality that can't be ignored.
I keep thinking about these words from Need to Breathe.
Ramblers in the wilderness we can't find what we need
Get a little restless from the searching
Get a little worn down in between
Like a bull chasing the matador is the man left to his own schemes
Everybody needs someone beside them shining like a lighthouse from the sea
Brother let me be your shelter
I'll never leave you all alone
I can be the one you call
When you're low
Brother let me be your fortress
When the night winds are driving on
Be the one to light the way
Bring you home
More than ever, I believe it is so important for our children to have godly influences in their lives as friends. We can guide and direct our children, but there comes a time that friends and peers begin to play a huge role in their world. My prayer is that our son and each of our girls will have friends who they can count on to be "their shelter." Friends, that will be there to "light the way and bring them home" should they start to get off God's path for their lives. Additionally, I pray that each of our children can be Christ's light to those they are around. As the song says, "everyone needs someone beside them shining like a lighthouse from the sea"