Thursday, May 31, 2012

Rigg rides a pony named Tucker

Life has been busy.
I think business is par for the course with 2 boys under 3 who run everywhere and climb on everything... 

thinking about it makes me tired, busy...

and we have been going,going,going... to the zoo, to the children's museum, to the pool, to papaw and mamaw's and pops and mimi's and the park...

and to ride a pony for the first time!

So there are these wonderful people Mr. and Mrs. J, who for lack of a better description, love us.
Oh how they love us...
They let Andy and I have our wedding reception at their house, they were generous beyond belief toward us when Caden died, and now they give of their time to give Rigg his first pony ride...

(blurry pic taken on phone...however if you look close enough you not only will see Riggs doubt being mounted on a moving pony and Ryder's curiosity about his brother's large hairy seat, but the fact that my mom and I are wearing the same shoes...)

So Mr. and Mrs. J live super close to my parents, and part of their horse pasture borders my parents yard. We often take the boys to see the horses and feed them apples. Rigg loves it... and always runs down to the fence even when the horses are not out.

However last Thursday...(I am so far behind on keeping up with my own life) we went to see Mr. J and Tucker.

Rigg was a bit hesitant at first but really warmed up. I am so thankful for families who love on us and give us gifts like time and pony rides.... what an awesome blessing!

Oh, and Ryder was there too...but you couldn't stop the boy from running his chubby legs off. Wide open spaces are Ryder's favorite!(as are dirt, sticks, creeks, rocks, and making his mother run and sweat... all of which was available and happening at this point in time...little boy heaven.)

Thursday, May 17, 2012

My Mother's Day gift

It's no secret.
Every year I ask for the same Mother's Day gift.

And I LOVE it.

I ask for family pictures.
I love getting pictures around the same time every year to see how the boys grow, how they change.
My hope is that we can do this every year so that by the time they are teenagers I have to beg for weeks in advance for good attitudes and no photos of rolling eyes...
it is something to look forward to.  ;)

This year we met up with Melissa from Willow Grove Photography.  Who is awesome. She is super adorable and so easy going. She has 4 kids of her own, so I feel no need to apologize for the behavior of my boys... at least no need to apologize at length.
She spent an hour at the park with us on a gorgeous afternoon.
She captured our family as it is right now.
the running-will-not-stay-still boys
the paci-sucking Ryder
the chatter-box Rigg
the beautiful chaos that is young children

the God given gift that is my family.

Here are some a ton of my favorite shots.


Tuesday, May 15, 2012

the hole

I was ill prepared for Mother's Day.

Not in the material sense. I had that all taken care of.
But mentally prepared, I was not.

In all honesty, it didn't even cross my mind that it might be hard. (clearly running around trying to keep house-and-home tidy as well as chasing raising 2 young boys is steadily erasing working brain cells)
I was looking forward to Mother's day. Enjoying my boys and spending time with my moms, biological and marriage related.
I was focused on the tangible... I was preoccupied with that which is always tugging at my legs, pulling at my time... preoccupied with the urgent, that is moment by moment, my life with children.

So it snuck up on me... the grief... the aching emptiness and throbbing sadness.
And for a few moments (OK- like 45 min) it stole my focus and my joy, replacing it with tears and sorrow.
All I saw was the huge hole Caden left behind.

My church celebrates Mother's Day with child dedications. I always enjoy seeing the little ones and hearing what their father's have to say about them. But this year, right in the middle of the second child I started to tear up... then it got hard to breathe... then I lost it.
I practically ran from the sanctuary to find a better place to lose it.
I found a quiet, dark Sunday School room. With the gift of a full box of tissues.
Thank you Jesus.

I was overwhelmed with missing her. And I was also silently kicking myself for not being prepared for this...and feeling SO guilty for not thinking more of my precious baby girl on this of all days.

I listened to worship through a crack in the side door... still in the myself, just me and my growing pile of tissues.  I listened carefully to the words of the songs.. all declaring Jesus and His great love for me. All slowly wrapping their warm tender words around my wounded heart bringing comfort. And truth... the truth of Heaven... and rest.
My struggle here is so temporary compared to the vastness that is eternity. And I would rather have a promised eternity with Caden then an unsure few short years here on earth.
And I know I do not have to worry or pray for my baby girl.
She is safe and sound.
And I know I do not have to worry about me... for when my time comes I will go to be with her.

These truths eased my tears... slowed my sobs and quieted my troubled spirit.
Reminding me of the abundant blessings God has lavished upon me. Blessings I tend to lightly gloss over when I focus on the hole that Caden left behind.  I so desperately want to live joyously and in full awareness of God's undeserving grace in my life.
I want to be overwhelmingly grateful with the fullnessof it... but I still want to remember the hole Caden has left.
Because the hole is a screaming reminder that better things await.
and I am ready.

Monday, May 7, 2012


It has taken me over a week to get this post up.

not even kidding.

Nothing serious has hampered my posting abilities... just normal, everyday mommy-life stuff... you know, 2 littles filled to the brim with snot, a mountain of laundry - done in stages, dishes, I might have mopped the floor once... and mostly trying to keep 2, very active, little boys busy.

Which is kinda what this post is about; my crazy, loud,extremely energetic boys!

(right now, just because I want to finally post this, I am ignoring the fact that they are climbing on and jumping from the furniture...still in their PJ's...and possibly eating chocolate pop-tarts.)

Evenings around here are filled with LOUD. On good weather days we head to the park and let the boys run off some energy... and on rainy nights... like all of last week, you get a bit more creative. Like letting your husband be a jungle gym while you do dishes, peruse Pinterest and snap pictures.

During most days, the boys try to fill the time with activities of their own invention.  Their newest enjoyment is dive bombing onto the couch from the end table.  I struggled with this at first... not wanting them to climb on furniture, or fall off furniture, or push each other off furniture. Then... life swirled up around me, choosing my battles... I did not choose this one. Still not 100% sure if it was by decision or default...anyway,
 Mommy - ?, Boys - 1...

really they do a pretty good job of being careful... but then you get this...

which results in this...

And this... (stinker)

and mommy says "how 'bout we play on the cars?"
they were thrilled I tell you... thrilled.
Whatever... I saved Ryder's life... I know it.
He can thank me later.

notice how Ryder drives the car... hilarious.

And then sometimes... much to my amazement and delight... they are adorably peaceful together. Like the other day when they were having their snack... and all was quiet... and my insides froze at the realization and thought of what said silence could mean...
And then I found them like this... and my heat melted.

and I realized I could not be more blessed.

These 2 boys are amazing blessings.
Even though they do make me crazy-tired-pull-out-your-hair-crazy... I wouldn't trade it.
At least not today.