Friday, December 30, 2011

pictures for the family

before thanksgiving, my sis and i had pictures taken by this talented lady as gifts for our parents and grands. here are a few:
(none of these pics are watermarked...please don't borrow without permission.)













happy new year to you and your family!

Thursday, December 29, 2011

the ugliness

the longer i'm a wife and mother, the more i see my need for a Savior...my sinfulness.

it's ugly.

sometimes, i can't stand to even look at myself in the mirror because i'm afraid of the ugliness that i might see.
it's those times that i don't want to pray, even though i need to, because i'm afraid of my sweet, heavenly Father seeing the ugliness that lives in me...pretending He doesn't already know it's there.

as i think about 2011, i think about all of the what ifs and should'ves...i think about situations that i handled sinfully, instead of gracefully...times when i let my flesh control my actions and words instead of the Holy Spirit.

and i wonder...

how could a completely sinless Father love me...a completely sinful daughter?
how could He, before the beginning of time, call me His own?
how.could.He?

and i sit amazed...

amazed that He could love an overbearing, insecure, selfish, vain me!
amazed that, even after i continually fail or give up, that He stays beside me, never leaving me.

despite my failures, my insecurities, my misgivings, my unfaithfulness, He is always faithful, always there with an unending, unfailing love. oh, to love like Christ.

as 2012 approaches, i sit amazed and thankful.

thankful to be a wife, a mother, a sister, a daughter, a friend. thankful for a Godly man who loves me and provides for our family, and who is supportive of me staying home with our children. thankful that, despite the lack of sleep and the stressfulness that comes along with parenthood, i get to wake up everyday and do something that i love. i get to spend my day with an amazing little boy and a sweet baby girl, and it's here that i'm thankful for God's love and grace that covers me. thankful that His grace abounds and pushes me towards becoming more like Christ. thankful that He doesn't give up on me.

yes, i'm most thankful for His grace because without it, there'd just be the ugliness...

for you, o Lord, are good and forgiving,
abounding in steadfast love to all who call upon you.
give ear, o LORD, to my prayer;
listen to my plea for grace.
in the day of my trouble i call upon you, 
for you answer me.
psalm 86:5-7

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

{nora} two months

little girl is now 2 months old.
she's a lot more alert, taking in the wonders of the world around her.
she has discovered her hand and can stare at it for quite a long time for a baby. 
she started sleeping through the night...
which makes for one happy mama {yay}
little girl is growing, so up went all of her newborn clothes. {tear}
but, that means she's a healthy baby!
right before she turned two months old, we did have a trip to the er. it was early on a sunday morning and nora had a fever of 101.6. i paged our pediatrician and was told to go to the children's hospital er. what i thought would've been just a quick visit, turned into a 5 day stay.
she had rsv, respiratory syncytial virus, which is a very common virus that has cold symptoms, and most kids get it sometime before they are 2, but can cause problems for young babies. jude had it when he was one, so i wasn't worried at all...however, nora couldn't eat a thing without coughing and gagging on the mucus (eww), which made her throw up everything she ate! this meant she had to have fluids to keep her from becoming dehydrated. 
everyday we'd think we were going to go home, but the doctors would say one more day just to be cautious...i'm glad they did, because if i were at home, i wouldn't have known what to do when she couldn't keep anything down, and really wouldn't have been able to do anything. she needed the fluids they were giving her in the iv to keep her hydrated, and most of the time we were there she was very lethargic...my sweet baby would just lay there and barely move.
i stayed with her the whole time, which was the first time i had ever been away from jude for that long. thankfully, both of our families live near us, so we had their help with little man. 

her bout with rsv wasn't as serious as some cases. 
some babies have to have oxygen or breathing treatments, so we thanked God that she didn't have that serious of a case.
by thursday, little bit was wiggling, smiling and ready to go home...and so was i!
she loves to smile, and when she does, you can see how happy she is in her eyes.
i love those open mouth gummy smiles.

Monday, December 19, 2011

two years {jude}

december 10th came quickly this year. 
i wasn't ready to embrace it! 
my little man turned 2.
the past 2 years have been a blur...filled with hugs and kisses, laughter, tears and tantrums! i wouldn't change a thing...well, maybe i would make time slow down so i could stop and file away every brown-eyed stare and sweet slobbery baby kiss that came along my way. little man has been such a blessing. he's grown up so fast. 
he loves his daddy...about the same time everyday that daddy gets home...i don't know how he knows what time it is...he starts calling da-da. he loves to ride his cycle (a push motorcycle) and to mow the lawn with his bubble lawn mower. he has this amazing ability to hold on to the smallest of things for the longest of times...he'll find an acorn "hat" (the tops of the acorns) and hold it in his hand for hours...he loves cars and cars the movie...he's learning how to say please when he wants something and thank you when he gets it...and sometimes he confuses the thank you with your welcome and tells me "elcome." he loves being mommy's "elper," helping me cook, putting dishes away, or picking up toys. he is also quite stubborn...like his mommy and daddy...he likes to have his way, and when he doesn't get it, the world has come to an end!
i love to hear him say "mama hold you," fluctuating on the you when he wants to be held.
he loves taking showers instead of baths. i love it when we say it's night-night time and the first thing he says is "bible" and then "ock" (rock) and then "sing." my favorite is when he sings with me...jesus loves me and somewhere over the rainbow...and when he tries to say prayers...my heart melts.
i thank God for the time that we've had with this handsome, rambunctious, sweetheart of a boy. i pray he will come to know the Lord at a young age and grow into a God-loving, God-fearing man. i pray he will continue to want to read the Bible with us, and say prayers with us. 
what a blessing it has been to be his mommy.
happy birthday, jude!
i love you!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

our {2011} Christmas card

In Living Color Christmas Card
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