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Monday, November 29, 2010

"My cullahs are Blush and Bashful" ..."Her colors are PINK and PINK!"

So, I guess this is what happens when the mother of two boys gets to celebrate her daughter's first birthday...
My one wish for my girl on her special day, was to be surrounded in love.  My wish came true.

Thanks to Marty, Mom and Gram for help with the cooking; Dad, Sandy, Nana & Grandpa Ed for travelling so far, Missy & Kristin for making the last-minute cake, Abigail for capturing the moments, Derek for helping me cross of my list and to everyone who came to celebrate with us.  I could not think of a better way to cap off the first year of Ellie's life.  THANK YOU!

PS:  We all know that the party for a One year old is really for the THANK YOU ALL for indulging me!  Oh, and favorite pic of the day...

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

5 till One- Birthday Countdown

Dear Children-

I began this post as a letter to Ellie 5 days before her birthday, but all of these apply to all of you.  Here are 5 little nuggets of advice from your mother:

1.  Get to know your Maker.  And by Maker, I mean the one and only Jesus Christ, Lord and Savior.  As much as your dad and I want to be your "everything", even we cannot love you and be there for you like Jesus can.  It is inevitable- everyone you know will eventually, at some point let you down. God will not.  I promise that I will show Him to you in every way that I can.

2.  Stick with it.  Never quit.  Never give up.  I am referring to marriage here, honey.  Your dad and I don't know what it is like to have parents that are still married, but we'd both probably say that is the one thing in our lives that we long for no matter how old we get.  Some people may make marriage look easy all the time- and maybe for them it is.  For the rest of us, however, marriage can be tough.  The absolute best advice on marriage that I can give you is to love, unconditionally, no matter what.  In the best of times, marriage will be fun, exciting and easy.  But in the hard times remember this: Love your spouse through the eyes of God completely unselfishly.  Seek the good in your spouse and honor the commitment you made.  Always.

3.  To have a friend, be a friend.  Be the friend you want to have.  Take the risk, share your heart, be OK with being vulnerable and open.  True "heart/sister/brother friends" are more valuable than gold.  Unlike family who you don't choose, friends become your friends because you WANT them to be.  Guard your heart and use discretion when choosing your friends.  But, when you do discover that a person is worthy of your love and friendship- give your heart freely to them and love them unconditionally.  Should a problem arise between you and a heart/sister/brother friend- approach, talk it out and move on.  Chances are you will be closer afterward. 

4. Tithe.  I cannot even begin to tell you how important this one is.  EVERYTHING you have comes from God, we owe HIM everything, so please, at the very least, give back to Him what is biblically required.  Give joyfully and with thanksgiving.  I promise you that the Lord rewards the faithful.  And while we are on the subject of giving...give your time, your talents, your resources to those in need.  You will think it is you who is giving, but in the end, you will be the one walking away with the greatest reward.

5.  Write, record, type, photograph...document your life and the life of your family.  You won't ever regret anything you do to capture your history and the history of your spouse and children.  You will enjoy looking back to see where you've been, what you've looked like and reflecting on God's blessings in your life.

Well, there you have it.  5 little pieces of advice from me among thousands that I will probably give you in your lifetime.

Tate: Accidentally just slung toothpaste all over Brit.
Brit: Crying about being covered in toothpaste.
Ellie: Sleeping peacefully in your crib.
Dad: In Michigan oblivious to it all. :-)

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

6 till one- Birthday Countdown

Believe it or not, you share the same birth month with 6 other VERY SPECIAL PEOPLE
Carole Ann Vansant Everett- family
Brooks Owen York- friend
Brooks Bowman Ray- friend
Jack Garrett- friend
Tommy "Papa" Shaw- family
Nancy Dolph- family

What you're doing now:
Tonight you are crying out in your crib intermittently...just so you know, carrots give you gas.  sorry for that.  will wait a few more months to try those orange trouble makers again.

Monday, November 15, 2010

7 till One - Birthday Countdown

In seven days my baby will be one year old.  Here's seven memories of my girl:

1. When I found out I was expecting you I did what I always do when I am expecting a baby- I went out and bought a journal so that I could write down my thoughts and my memories of you.  The color of journal I chose?  Pink.  Do you think I knew?

2. When the ultrasound technician so rudely proclaimed "girl", I almost hyperventilated- she could barley keep the sonogram wand on my belly because of my sobs.  I stared at the monitor in disbelief and to this day I cannot believe I was blessed with you.  My girlfriends threw me a "pink party" that night to celebrate with a mom who had two times been blessed with boys...but finally got her girl.

3.  The first thing I said to you when I saw you was "she looks like Tate!".  Guess that wasn't poetic or particularly memorable, but I wasn't expecting you to look like that...or have THAT MUCH hair!

4. I've used a hair dryer on you since the day you were born...and a comb.

5.  I let you sleep with me for your first 4 months of life.  I know that is awful, but I couldn't help it.  Our room was SO COLD and you were SO LITTLE.  I loved that special time with you.

6. In those early days, you were SO SLEEPY!  I remember fretting over you and praying that you would be OK.  I would hold you in front of the window so your yellow skin could drink in the sunshine.

7.  I almost let you drown when you were about two weeks old.  I was bathing you and you got really slippery and soapy water got all over your mouth and you were breathing in the soap bubbles and I thought I might have a heart attack.  But you survived...and I did too...barely.

Friday, November 12, 2010

On this day...

Today I lift up a friend who has been where no mother ever wants to go. 
On this day, two years ago, she gave birth to an angel who went to be with Jesus before his mama ever even saw his face. 

We held that mama, we loved her, we cooked for her, we grieved with her, we were there when she laid her baby to rest.  But we don't walk in her shoes, we don't see through her eyes we don't hurt with her heart. 

I draw strength from her strength and the way she only ever looked to the Lord for comfort and for peace.  I remember being afraid to tell this friend that I was expecting another baby just a few months after losing hers, but oh how she rejoiced with me.  It was then that I began to understand the love and strength of a Christ-filled heart of a true friend.

And on this day, her newest miracle will be on the operating table. We all pray for strength for that baby, for the doctors' hands to be steady and minds to be clear.  For peace and patience as the mama waits...and prays...and prays...and waits...until she can hold her baby again.

God Bless you, my friend.

Tuesday, November 09, 2010


Sunday, November 07, 2010


First there was "ma ma", followed by "da da" (which has three meanings- daddy, dog & bye bye) and today it was "uh-oh" as you dropped your cup over and over and over again saying "uh-oh" each time and laughing at how fun this new game of yours is.  Not sure if it is considered a word or a phrase, but either way, you are hilarious and you entertained all four of us today.

Friday, November 05, 2010

First Born Friday

My first born in a word: heart


the first experience i had when i knew mine was no longer beating in my chest, but bundled up in a blue blanket early one june morning in 2004


i've never seen a man lose his for another like the way your daddy did for you when he followed you to the NICU


you wear it on your sleeve


you say it might explode because "the most beautiful two girls in the whole world live in this house"


mine breaks when yours does


Jesus lives in yours and you both live in mine