Faith is deliberate confidence in the character of God whose ways you may not understand at the time ~Oswald Chambers

Sunday, May 29, 2011

"That's Really Good!"

Lily's exact words when asked what she thought of the ocean.

I think we all agree.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Happy Birthday Sweet Lauren

Twelve years today.
My how time flies.
But even though it's been over a decade since you first graced our lives with your arrival, some things are still the same....

Those big blue eyes.

And breath-taking smile.

Your creative spirit.

And occasional bad hair day.

But as you grow, I'm discovering that there are so many more wonderful things to love about you...

Like how you love your family.

And your friends.

How you love those in need.

But most importantly, how you love Jesus.

And there is no greater joy for this momma than knowing just how much He loves you, too.

Happy Birthday Lauren!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Growing Up So Fast...

Thirteen years, fifty weeks, and four days ago (but really, who's counting?) we dressed this sweet little bug in a Pooh-bear onesie, wrapped him in a matching blanket, and prepared to make that life-changing journey from the security of the hospital to our home.

And I marveled at how much cuteness could be found in such a tiny bundle.


Tonight I helped him get dressed once again.
Straightening his tie.
Adjusting his coat.
Preparing for his eighth grade graduation.

And though the bundle had grown about 5 and a half feet since that trip home from the hospital,
I still marveled at his cuteness.

And his humor.

For example...
This afternoon we were all in the car for a long time.
A very long time.
And one of the backseat passengers was voicing their complaint of just how long they had been in the backseat.

So in an act of bribery a moment of compassion, I offered said child one of the bread sticks that we had just picked up for dinner....
If they would , you know, learn to find joy in their backseat suffering for the duration of our trip.

When I reappeared in the driver's seat, my soon-to-be-high schooler, fresh from his history exam says...

"Did you just appease her?  'Cause they tried that with Hitler you know.
 In World War II.
Gave him some land.  Thought that would make him go away.
Next thing you know he's all over Poland."

Comparing my parenting skills to one of the greatest political oversights of the 20th century?
Just what I need.

But goodness he's a funny kid.

And though I dearly miss that little bundle that we brought home the hospital years ago,
I am so enjoying the young man that he is growing up to be.

And I can't wait to see what kind of parenting advice I'll get during his high school years.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Lesson Learned

Swim season is upon us.
Lots of practicing.
Lots and lots of time spent at the pool.
Lots and lots and lots of pictures of cute kids enjoying 90 degree weather by splashing the day away.

Unfortunately, all those pictures are being held hostage by my Smart phone.
Which makes me feel really stupid.  Not smart.

I was very interested to see how Lily would do at the pool.
Before it opened we would ask her if she'd ever been swimming before.
Had she been in a pool?
Had she ever seen a pool?

At the time we had that conversation, all we got from her were gestures that simulated drowning.
Not good.

But these first few days have been great.
She's all over that pool, looking adorable with floaties on each arm, goggles, and a swim ring around her waist.
And silly me, I thought she'd be happy with that for the duration of the summer.
Just to get her acclimated and all.
And then next summer....

Oh no.
No, no, no.
This is Lily we're talking about.

She's watched Caroline and Michael have tune up lessons for swim team.
She's watched Alex do lessons with his age group...the pre-swim team swim team.
And in her mind she's ready.
So she asks me.

But I've gone down this road before.
If certain skills aren't in place, lessons are like throwing your money away aren't very effective.
And as of 6:00 this evening, she wasn't going under the water.

Until I told her that once she was able to go underwater..
without holding her nose...
then we'd see about lessons.

And by 6:15, the child was diving for rings on the bottom of the pool.

Swim lessons start June 6.

Parenting lessons, on the other hand, are ongoing.

Wordless Wednesday {Pool Time}

Thursday, May 19, 2011

A Style of His Own

Guess who dressed himself for the recital?

And guess who was more than happy to let him go looking just like that?

(He received quite a few compliments by the way.)

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

And then...

And then there was one.
One last recital post.

My piano man.

I have no problem driving him around town to lessons.
Or reminding him to practice.
Day after day.
Week in and week out.

'Cause the boy's got mad skills.
Mad skills, I tell you.
(In my very humble, completely unbiased, mother-of-this-my-first-born-child opinion.)

Now, if I could only get him to make his bed....

The Duet

I don't have one myself so it's all a little new to me.
This phenomena called "sisterhood."

Most of the time they are inseparable.
Occasionally they need to be separated.

They are completely honest with one another about everything.
Sometimes a little too honest.

But watching these two work together for the past few months on their duet has been quite enlightening.

The laughter.
The crying.
The joy.
The frustration.
The criticism.
The encouragement.
The silliness.
The determination.
The things that are shared between sisters.

When they started their practicing, it was individually, each focusing on their own parts.
But then they came together.
And they had to learn to listen to each other.
And learn to be patient with each other.
And learn to support one another.

And they did.

And the end result was beautiful.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

The Recital

Five months ago, I only knew her through pictures. 
But even then I could see in her a confidence and a joy.

Four months ago today, we met for the first time.
The confidence was for real.
As was the joy.
To this day, she's one of the bravest people I know.
Two months ago, after a couple of times observing her siblings take piano lessons, she decided she was ready to try it herself.
And her very gracious, very talented teacher found her a spot in the schedule.

One month ago, it was decided that she was ready to perform in the upcoming spring recital.
Not just one song, but two.

And just last Saturday, confidence and joy overflowed as she waltzed across the stage, took her seat at the piano and played her songs beautifully.



How I eagerly await to see what He has in store for her future.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Trip to the OT

Took Lily to see the occupational therapist last week for an evaluation.

She had a blast.


If only every doctor's visit could be this fun.

My favorite moment of the appointment came when the therapist asked Lily to string several beads onto a shoelace.
Not usually a big deal, but this particular test was timed.
And the time was so limited that she forewarned Lily, "It's a lot harder than it seems."

"Most kids," she told her, "only get 2 or 3 beads strung before time runs out."

Mmmm hmmm I thought to myself.
It's on now.

And it certainly was.

When all was said and done she had strung 5 beads and scored a fine motor age equivalency of 19 years.

19 years.

If you ask me, kids like her bring a whole new meaning to the term "special" needs.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Wordless Wednesday {Wild Thing}

...praying every day for her future husband :)