Friday, April 24, 2015

A Place For You

My little girl's room is ready. It's soft and light and feminine. Everything in it was handmade, re-purposed, refinished, or gifted in love by family and friends.
It's a room full of thoughts, blessings, prayers, love, and joy all for her and it couldn't be a more special place for me to walk into and soak in the meaning of the things around the room.
Friends and family have spent hours searching, creating, or making some things. I spent hours covered in paint or glue, sewing and drilling, and hunting and searching for the items to make it perfect.
All for this tiny little girl I've never met, I've never seen face to face yet love so fiercely and long for so deeply I spend countless amounts of time preparing for.
And it's when I'm silent in her room I've prepared, my momma heart connects to my Father's heart in an understanding so raw and real.
He's preparing a place for me.
He's gone to prepare a place...for me. I've never seen Him face to face, I fail pitifully and sin miserably yet my Father spends time preparing the perfect place for me. Just like my unconditional love for my daughter, my Father leaves no detail to spare as He crafts and creates perfection...for me.
My little girl's four small walls are prepared in the most loving way my being can know how. But to ponder in my heart the love being poured into the places He is preparing for us, leaves me breathless.
I'm counting down days to bring her home to this room prepared for her. And I'm anticipating the days ahead of discipling her beautiful young heart towards her Father and His preparation for us!

 "In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also."
John 14:2-3 

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

37 Weeks

How Far Along: 37 Weeks
Size of Baby: 6lbs and 19 inches long
Gender: Girl!
Maternity Clothes: Because she has dropped I've actually been able to wear some of my regular shirts again, but of course, paired with my beloved maxi skirts.
Movement: She gets pretty active after I've been active and really starts squirming when I'm drinking ice water, but I guess I would be too if ice was going down my back.
Cravings: So my in-laws brought watermelon for Wilson's party, but let's just be honest, it was just their guise to bless my craving socks off and I'm pretty sure I consumed my weight in it!
Symptoms: Contractions are starting to make an irregular appearance in my day...and night. Nothing to time, nothing to stop me, but things are starting to train for the big day. I had my appointment today and little lady is looking beautiful and the midwife is still predicting an early arrival.
Best Moment of the Week: I got to go with all my sisters to get pedicures (Above is a belly shot of the cousins after their momma's toes were painted). It's been a fun tradition in the past that Matt treats me to the pampering before baby arrives, but this was the first time I got to go with my sisters and it was awesome. I celebrated my baby girl by getting my toes all bright pink for her arrival!


Friday, April 17, 2015

36 Weeks

How Far Along: 36 Weeks (I'm a week behind in posting this, but y'all are used to that now right? :)
And photo creds go to my creative husband who told me I needed to include both pictures: one of me in focus and one of the cherry blossoms in focus. I just appreciate his willingness to fuss with my camera every week to document this so when he was super excited about his pictures you better believe I include them both :)
Size of Baby: Our ultrasound last week measured her around 5lbs and 18" long.
Gender: Girl!
Maternity Clothes: Thanks to her dropping I can now wear some of my regular shirts again, but my regular jeans are now out of the running. I've found one pair of maternity pants that doesn't have that annoying panel thing and they actually work somewhat. But because she's so low it honestly feels funny to have anything tight around my hips so maxi skirts rule supreme!
Movement: She's losing a lot of her space as everything shifts towards her birthday. She isn't somersaulting anymore, but she loves to stretch out and doesn't care about abdominal walls or kidneys getting in her way.
Cravings: Fruit, watermelon, pineapple, fruit, blueberries, strawberries, fruit, kiwi, mangoes...fruit. 
Symptoms: At my 36 week appointment my midwife once again noted I'm measuring a month behind. I'm also losing weight as my thyroid meds have been upped again. She said little lady is extremely low and she is willing to "bet money" I won't make it full term. She said to get ready because we'll be having a baby at any time. I told her I was really hoping to make it to May and she laughed. She doesn't share my optimism. But babies come when they come regardless of what I want or what the midwife says. So I'm still going to pray for at least May 1!
Best Moment of the Week: Getting her crib all set up with the bedding, and just sitting in the rocking chair in her room knowing in just a few weeks time she will be in our arms. Oh and Jefferson daily asking if she can come out now so he can teach her stuff :)

Harrison at 36 Weeks (No pics, just update after a midwife appt.)

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

730 Days - Two Years With Wils

The past 730 days have been a blur, literally. You are a non-stop, on the go, brute squad member, giggling, slobbery, blur...and we are in love with you!
I should have known on April 15, 2013 when you barely let me make it into the hospital doors before deciding to make your grand and dramatic entrance into the world, that this was just par for the course. This is who you are, a "watch out world, here I am" kind of guy.
You love a good knocked down, dragged out wrestling match, anything with a motor, every kind of sport that involves a ball, and possess incredible skills in finding the muddiest of puddles to jump in. You are trying to convince me you're ready to ditch the diapers, you love jumping down stairs, cuddling when you wake up, and watching "Yo-Ho" (Jake and the Neverland Pirates) and Veggie Tales.
You've never seen a chicken nugget you didn't like, a stranger that wasn't immediately your friend, or any kind of cheese that you'd be willing to pass up. You have a hound nose for sugar, love singing and music, and 2 Timothy 1:7 is your favorite verse and you recite it in the most adorable Wils-way.
You are the roughest, tumbliest, teddy bear full of joy and adventure. These past two years have made our family richly blessed having you in it! We are smitten with you Wils and we couldn't be more proud of the man you are becoming. We love you! Happy Birthday Baby!

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Hurry Up and Wait

I'm terrible at waiting. I don't do it well at all. I'm a work in progress since waiting is a huge part of life and God does some pretty big things in hearts during waiting times.
Waiting is a balance. You can't just sit back with a magazine, you can't wallow in worry of "what's next", you can't ignore you are indeed waiting, and you can't be so busy that you miss what you've been waiting for.
The past few months have been a series of waiting for big events to play out, travel dates to arrive, birthday parties, international flights to land, jobs to be completed, bill due dates, doctor's appointments, consignments sales, and spring to bloom.
And when I look back at these past few months, all the days of waiting disappeared into a flurry of memories and moments to cherish. 
Because the waiting really isn't terrible, it's rich and heavy with the gift of time you'll never get back.
And while longing for spring to bloom and the warm long days to arrive the richness of the waiting has been filled with new adventures with my men. We've hit the streets of DC and met tourists from Holland, made friends with mounted police, and helped a grad student not study when Wils stole his pen and a fun game of chase ensued.
And now we're waiting for another birthday. The days tick by as we count down our baby girl to join our family. The clothes are washed and hung, the crib is set up, diapers are ready, and we wait.
But since I don't wait well, you won't find me just sitting around or stressing the unknown. These are very special days of soaking up spring with my favorite guys in the world. Days full of the the three brothers being their wild and adventurous selves before their world gets a touch of pink.
These days of waiting, my heart is ever before God as I prepare to have a daughter for the first time. As I become a role model in a way I never have before. I pray this time of waiting will continue to be one of God growing in me as I wait for my little girl.
Because you, our little lady, are eagerly anticipated by a giddy mommy and daddy, three adoring big brothers, and a whole host of family and friends eager to see your beautiful face. You are loved, celebrated, cherished, and completely worth this wait.

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

35 Weeks

How Far Along: 35 Weeks
Size of Baby: 5 lbs and 18" long
Gender: Girl!
Maternity Clothes: Still living in maxi skirts because lets face it, they are super comfy and I can't justify athletic shorts/pants every single day even though they rival that comfort level.
Movement: I can tell she feels bigger and like she's running out of room in there. Her movements are growing very strong and pronounced (read rib bruising). She perks up when the boys are going crazy nearby, which is quite often actually, and when I accidentally grab Matt's full caff coffee. 
Cravings: Still on my fruit kick. I'd also like to take this moment to publicly declare watermelon the best thing ever created to be eaten and there needs to be more of it in my life.
Symptoms: I went in for my 34 week appointment last week and the midwife grew concerned when I only measured barely 30 weeks. After encouraging her to look back through my records at how I do this with every single pregnancy, she agreed to lay aside the freaking out and just do an ultrasound to confirm baby girl's well being and prove everything was just fine. Sure enough, though she's on the light weight side of 30% for her weight at this point, she looks perfect, growing healthy and we even got to see her practicing sucking and breathing motions! She was nodding her head up and down and waving her hands back and forth. She has "dropped" and is much lower now which is contributing to my sudden drastic measurement change, but all is on track and we're in the home stretch until we get to meet our little lady!
Best Moment of the Week: Celebrating Easter as a family and realizing next year we'll be adding a pretty little dress to the suits and ties as we celebrate our risen Savior!
 

Sunday, April 5, 2015

White Shoes and Linen

Growing up in the South means you begin life ingrained with rich traditions and lots of "because that's the way it's done."
You say "sir" and "ma'am", eat dressing and gravy only at Thanksgiving and Christmas, and never wear white shoes before Easter.
But on Easter it was all white, lace, and linen. My sisters and I each had a brand new pair of white lace socks, shiny white shoes, and depending on the year, a stylish hat complete with the elastic chin strap, which really hurts by the way if you pulled your hat off too fast.
And now I'm the mom weaving traditions and deep roots into influential minds. No white shoes or linen pants before Easter, or seersucker, or cream suits, and always take 347 pictures on the way out the door for church on Easter morning.
It's inevitable, it's coming, and my boys are just at the point of accepting this fact of mom-arrazi on Easter morning as much as they are accepting of waiting on their favorite seersucker and white boat shoes.
But traditions of fashion, Easter dinner menus, photo shoots, or egg hunts all fall away in the light of traditions aimed to deeply root young hearts in the tragedy, torture, and triumph or our Savior.
Ingraining in our little men (and lady to come) the traditions of Passover, the last supper, the garden, the cross, the torn veil, and the empty grave are more important than taking pictures or waiting to wear linen.
And while I'm grateful for memories of blazers and little ties captured in pictures, I'm even more blessed to hear these little men bow with us in prayer, praising their risen Savior for His sacrifice and salvation. 
Happy Easter 2015