Wednesday, February 16, 2022
Tuesday, February 15, 2022
We’ve been keeping a little secret…. We’re welcoming a new little princess into our family!!!
Heath and I are adopting a baby girl!!!!
She is due to be born on March 27th!!!!
I am officially paper pregnant, and I couldn’t be more surprised or thrilled myself that we’re given the gift of becoming new parents again to a precious one. The miracle that I am a mom will never get old to me.
So….as you can see from our announcement picture, we decided to take a last minute trip or baby moon with our kids to Disney World a couple weeks ago to celebrate our growing family and to pour ourselves into our children before I go back into survival mode which is the first few months of bringing a baby home. I can’t begin to say just how special it was to be at Disney World riding the rides, building memories at our favorite restaurants and character meets while I held the joyful secret that my heart is carrying a baby girl. I am so glad we parted the waters of our cold January life for sun, fun, and celebration at the most magical place on earth. It just seemed fitting!!
While still processing this news myself, I couldn’t hold it in any longer. Those of you who are on social media have seen our announcement already, but I wanted to share a bit more of the story in this personal space.
If you happen to be new here, adoption is the way the Lord grows our family. We have adopted all of our children! I love the way adoption reflects the way God brings His children into His family! (Ephesians 1:5) It’s a process that starts with pain and grief and ends with hope and redemption! Beauty from ashes.
Hahahaha. So, this surprise was on us actually! Before I begin there, let me back up just a little more and give you some back story. When I came back to blogging last year I said that I would go deeper with you online this space so that’s what I’m going to do. I’m taking the long way around to tell you how the Lord birthed this journey in us.
We didn’t know the Lord had this plan for us to have 4 children, but when we were asked about being interested in adopting this new little one, we automatically said “YES!”. Hahaha, more children weren’t even on our radar! (This is such a God thing.) We were perfectly content and happy with our three precious children, and I thought Rosemary would be our last child for a number of reasons…. First, she acts like a final child. ;) Heath and I both grew up in a home of three children. We are in our late thirties already and I’m beginning to feel it. We have a very full life, and I personally didn’t think more children would be on the table. Let’s just leave it there for now. Ultimately we were so very grateful for our family of five.
Backing up again.
Last year was….a lot.
It was a hard year for our family and for me personally—much harder for me than 2020. Most of it is personal stuff I won’t share, but I will say that I felt like I was brought to the brink. I stayed home by myself with the children most of the time. Homeschooling for the first time just doing the best I can and not having much support there. My husband is a pediatrician and was much, much, much busier than he has ever been working late nights and getting called into work more. The load of stress as he navigates an ever changing pandemic is something every healthcare worker has found a learning curve that no training could prepare one enough for. While he was present when he was around, we felt more like two tired ships passing in the night than a married couple most weeks —which left me pretty lonely and managing a lot by myself. Most of you may know that I’m introverted so it takes a lot for me to feel lonely, but I was very lonely in a house full of kids who are extroverts who were not getting the time with friends they truly needed. I wasn’t getting that either.
In June we lost two grandparents to Heaven suddenly, exactly to the very hour, one week apart. Two funerals saying goodbye to two of our favorite people in a week. That was very hard and brand new territory for us to deal with that kind of grief and watch our parents grieve was hard.. that’s when Heath’s work started to pick up. Delta cases in July were on the rise very suddenly.
Just a month later I was one of the breakthrough cases of the Delta variant of Covid, and I was very sick at home at the end of July going into August. The kids had to manage at home by themselves while I quarantined in our bedroom for 10 days. Heath was so busy at work he couldn’t be home to take care of us, although he did well to train the big kids to take care of the house. (Oh, also he potty trained Rosemary that week too! There’s always a silver lining!) The Lord absolutely protected my lungs from the virus, but I suffered from some long Covid symptoms. I actually became sick (not with Covid) again 3 more times before the year’s end which left me fatigued mentally and physically. Needless to say, by the time December was approaching I was ready for the New Year to roll around for a fresh start. Also for our kids to start back to the new private, Christian school we enrolled them in. (They’re loving being back at school, by the way, and I am too!)
During the stretch of several months that felt like one wave after the next was trying to knock us down, and in the midst I pursued Jesus a lot. I always like to think that I do, but 2021 brought me to the feet of Jesus in prayer literally throughout the day. Every single day. I needed wisdom. Healing. Comfort. Guidance. Strength in long suffering. Patience. Joy. Peace and Hope….. each morning He gave me what I needed and I came back for more of Him.
Okay. So. What happened in the midst of this is that He spoke to me through His Spirit… so some of these things were not a surprise…
More of that next blog….I have to go pick up my sweet girl from school now. Just wait until you hear the rest. God is good!!!
(We’re going to have a baby, friends!!!)
Tuesday, January 25, 2022
Thursday, January 20, 2022
Monday, January 17, 2022
Sunday, January 16, 2022
The first week of the 2022 gave us in Kentucky the best gift this year—winter came!
After a December that felt way more like a terrible case of the worst of spring with an F-5 tornado, flash flooding, and warm gray days, we deserved a cold, seasonal white winter to enjoy.
Right at about 5-6 inches, our area received a perfect blanket of snow that came in the form of big fluffy flakes that began in the early morning with the sunrise (somewhere behind the snow clouds) and ended mid afternoon. It fell gracefully throughout the day, the perfect way to watch it fall from swollen snow clouds to the frozen ground. It stuck right away!
Truly, I don't know if me or the kids were more excited!
We gathered all the snow gear we could find and all the warm hats and gloves and scarves for it was honestly bitter cold, but our excitement kept us outside over 15 minutes!
Tiny tongues caught snowflakes, snowballs were thrown, snow angels made.
It’s a lot of dedication for moms to get everyone all layered up and ready from head to toe, including ourselves, and bundled like Ralphie and Randy from the Christmas Story! When it’s 11 degrees outside, every inch is covered in at least four layers here! Why, in just a matter of moments we are back inside and dropping clothes on the rugs in the mud room and setting them in front of the electric fireplace we have in there to dry before our next outing.
It’s a lot, yes, but once I’m out in the brisk air and feel the snowflakes on my own cheeks I come alive!! I understand why kids love snow so much, because I still love playing in the snow!
This snowfall came with brutal temps so the outside play may have been few, but that means we come in for mugs of hot cocoa, which I enjoy making from the Hershey’s recipe on the cocoa container. I also add a handful of marshmallows to melt in the cocoa on the stove and then top with even more fluffy marshmallows in the mug! Perfect to sip while watching a movie. Later I had a deliciously fresh cup of my favorite Starbuck Christmas blend coffee in one of my favorite mugs, my brother Taylor brought home for me from Washington D.C. There’s nothing like warm sippers in hand and cozy blankets to snuggle under on snow days!
In these cozy pictures you’ll still see our Christmas trees still up from Christmas, but now we have everything put away at this point except a few twinkle lights to liven up the long winter nights. I’ve learned that gives me joy!
I’m so glad the Christmas trees were still up so we could enjoy the snowfall and the twinkling lights together! We rarely ever get December snowfalls like this, although I remember vividly a few Christmas snows growing up.. the last was the year we married in 2004. It felt like a perfect Christmas miracle!
I gathered the kids and read to them a new precious book my sister gifted them for Chrismas about Jesus. They played while I read. I don’t read to them all as much as I used to or as much as I would like to, but when I do it warms my heart so much!
The following day I awoke to a glistening white outside, and I knew I absolutely had to bundle up and get back in the frosty snow globe of a world.
The sun made the snow crunch under our feet!
Rosemary and I played in our yard while the big kids snow boarded down the neighborhood hill nearby. We had such a good time!!
My big two probably walked up that hill a dozen times or more so they came back in cold, tired and wanted to zone out on the couch with a movie.