Friday, December 21, 2012

Unseen Magic

"And when I give thanks for the seemingly microscopic, I make a place for God to grow within me."
 - Ann Voskamp, One Thousand Gifts.  

I just wanted to write a quick blurb about my days. Yesterday was so good to my soul, and I'm not sure if it was because of what I wrote in my journal the night before, but ...

"Sometimes I wonder If I'm addicted to the thrill of emotion and emotionlessness. Like all or nothing. I wish to just be--be in the moment and be happy with the beauty of simplicity, like the way my Christmas tree smells my house up with pine, or the three or four empty milk bottles which I pile in the sink throughout the day (those bottles should assure my heart that my boy is growing and is healthy), or the way my coffee maker makes the "heating up the water" sound in the morning, or even just the bright strand of lights that decorate my outside door. I am rich. And my happiness should not be defined by the news I see on social media or the text message or phone call from so and so. I am full of blessings and full of happiness because You have lavished on me."

I wrote that for me, to the Lord. (I always journal to the Lord.) So yesterday I ventured out into the cold, wet, December day. Laef and I ran errands, went Christmas shopping, etc. Laef fell asleep in my arms, as I shopped. I just wish I could take a moment in time and somehow make it become a solid so I could just stare at it. It was fabulous. 

I came home and put on White Christmas, made wrapping paper, and wrapped my gifts, full of such happiness and excitement. I don't know what it will be like the next week with all the holidays at my finger tips. But I am just happy. There is so much magic in the air...

Brandon has eleven days off work, and his parents are coming into town. My parents are coming, my best friend is coming for a day or two, and Laef is going to be carried around, squeezed and kissed for days. Lord, have mercy! 

As for now, I have a house to clean before my Brandon comes home. 

Today I can say I have spent 23 weeks with my sweet Laef. Yes, it's sweeter than I could ever imagine.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Five Months...

"I have found the paradox, that if you love until it hurts, there can be no more hurt, only more love." - Mother Teresa

My heart continues to overflow. I love you Laef Owen, these have been the most incredible five months of love. You are a wonder and you are perfect.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Christmas at Mi Casa

“Since love grows within you, so beauty grows. For love is the beauty of the soul.”
--St. Augustine

It is surreal how time pours its minutes into months, which are in turn kissed away in seconds. My life is full of such divine sweetness. From the middle of the night feedings to the small little coos and chatter of a waking boy looking at himself in a mirror in his crib. He is growing quickly and wonderfully. I have found a home for love.  

Laef is grabbing his toes, crossing his eyes to look at his fingers and nose. He yanks his socks off constantly. He blows bubbles, sucks his top lip in, lets out a giant song after a good bottle, and wraps Brandon and me up in a puddle of emotion every time he smiles at us. He's starting to stand and pull his body up--with chubby little wrists and super long legs. He's starting to eat rice and oatmeal cereal along with carrots, and peas. Poop has started to smell (but not that bad,) and his pants are all becoming capri's. Bibs are my favorite piece of apparel and laundry is going often. 

He loves his daddy so much. Whenever I bring him downstairs in the morning and he sees his daddy he lights up with emotion! And he's starting to grab our iPhones. (ohhh sweet Jesus...) I try not to encourage any TV, phone, computer watching. Once it starts... it never stops. 

So finally! I've been waiting for this month. So excited to start Christmas traditions. A list of Laef's "firsts" has set me on a crazy mother rampage. (I'll try to calm myself.) I'm sure Brandon probably rolls his eyes at me a million times over. And my poor girlfriends have to hear about all these "firsts." 

The Sunday after Thanksgiving, we went to our local tree farm and picked out a winner! There's something about the smell of pine as you walk through the long lines of trees waiting to be picked...waiting for a home...and the classic Christmas-tree-stand strand of lights.

This time last year I remember thinking that I would have a baby in a bouncy or attached at my hip as I decorated my house and wrapped gifts, and I had no idea what that would be like. How incredible it is to look back and remember and to then relish in the reality that it has happened and it's wonderful. 

Our close neighbors and friends came to help us out! 

Look how devious I look.... sad reindeer baby.

So Laef likes to roll around in front of the tree for long periods of time and play with his skunk, "Abe." And a side note--he's fitting into 9-12 month PJ's. Am I just one of those moms or... holy cow! He's not even five months old!

So as for the holidays, Thanksgiving was busy with lots of family. Brandon and I have been fighting a cold the last couple weeks. It comes and goes. Laef hasn't caught anything. He's great! 
My life consists of diapers, pumping, cleaning, laundry, and coffee with friends. I enjoy it. 

Laef loves food. I mean, he will freak out between each bite. So I mentioned he's eating cereal now. I was told he would start sleeping through the night. His stretch is from about 9PM-5AM. Which is through the night. I feed him and put him back to bed. I decide when he wakes up, and that is usually at 8AM. He's so good at the schedule I have set for him (eat->wake->nap->eat->wake->nap.) With full meals every 3.5 hrs, 2-hour naps twice a day and play time, which consists of playing the piano with me, rolling on the floor with his toys, tummy time, the bouncy, and the swing. <3 

Below was Thanksgiving day.

My girlfriend Molly came home for Thanksgiving. Laef loovvvves Molly! 

Yesterday, I spent time with my friend, Kori. The relationship I have with her is probably one of the deepest relationships in my life right now. She is the only person who could have made me want kids. We are both photographers and have too much in common. We made cookies allllll day! <3

The day after Thanksgiving, we walked around uptown Charlotte while they were putting Christmas stuff up in every building. I strapped Laef in and let him fall asleep. I had to stop a few times and just stare at his sweet eyelashes while he snoozed. He was held in the warmth of my body. I rubbed my face up against his soft head over and over, taking in the cold December air and gazing at the tall buildings around me and the beautiful Christmas lights. It was a clear sunset sky with Jupiter in sight and a full moon. In that moment my life was perfect. I cried. 

I put him to bed every night. And as I pray for his life, tears drip down into the crib and onto his beaming, bright-eyed, smiley, little face. I can't help myself. I step out of his room with mascara running down my eyes and let out a deep sigh. There is nothing more perfect. Ask my husband--it's almost nightly.

 Melting Pot with my girlfriends. <3

The New Year is coming so quickly, and I'm tempted to go on my rant and rave about how much better this year was than last year and how next year is going to be even better. But...I'll save that for my next blog. I guess I just feel thankful. So much could have gone wrong this year and so many things could have been awful. And none of it was. Slow healing has begun in my heart in areas. My goal next year is just to be "whole." I'm excited about the New Year. And most years, I dread it. But I feel like there is going to be something changing monthly and so much unfolding of fresh love. 

My business is booking so many weddings, I'm traveling, and I'm a stay-at-home mom. Don't get me wrong, I still have a list of things that I want fixed in my life and in relationships. I still have a long list of insecurities and what ifs. I still have questions as to why certain things are the way they are. But even if those things never get fixed, I will survive and not just survive, I'll grow. 

With Laef's first Christmas, and loads of family spending the day with us, I just want to steal my munchkin away for a few minutes, sit in silence, and cry while I thank God for sending me the gift of my husband and son. It's as if every time I cry, my tears heal my heart a little more. All the imperfections that I see melt away. 

Next blog, I want to share some photos from a shoot my friend Shelley did of our family. They are beautiful. <3 And... my son will be 5 months old next week. *sniff* And of course I will post new photos of his handsome face.

Until then... Have fun shopping, singing Christmas songs, decorating, and eating bad food!! 
Thanks for reading!