God completely surprised us with Gavin, but boy am I glad He did. Gavin is 21 months old now and is becoming his own little person. To say this child is busy, is an understatement. He will sit down and watch a Mickey Mouse every so often and he does enjoy a good book, but unless he is sleeping or eating, he is getting into something. I have found him a handful of times in the bathroom sink with the water running, on top of the kitchen counter "drawing", and most recently opening Christmas presents that have just been wrapped. Of course the mess he creates can be a bit unnerving and annoying, but I love his fearless, free spirit.
We are working on the smile.
I had to get a picture before discipline time came!
He enjoyed my nieces' presents a bit more than his own!
I love you Gavin! Your smile is infectious and I love that you still like to cuddle!
...And I am worn out...already! Lord knows this is not the first time I have shared with you all about my busy schedule, but man, I feel like we have been living in our car. I love traveling, spending time with family and friends, shopping, eating out, etc. You know, the things that keep you in constant motion, but I definitely feel God tugging at my heart to tell me I need to slow down. I know most of you can relate to the busyness, especially this time of year. I don't necessarily think the "going" is the issue. My body is (somewhat) capable of carrying out my day-to-day tasks. My main concern is that I haven't been as consistent about being still before Him and continuing to lean into Jesus. As I look into the New Year, I know that God wants me to have a season of rest-time to rejuvenate my relationship with Him. Of course, I am sure my schedule will not lend us to stay at home much, but I have to decide to be persistent about my pursuit of Him. I am so thankful that God is consistent to stick around while I wander off.
We had a lot of fun decorating our home this year for Christmas. As the boys grow older, it is nice to see them want to get more involved!
Gavin is growing up so quickly! At least he still likes for me to rock him like a baby!
The day after Thanksgiving we headed to St. Louis to meet my precious baby niece, Lila and to spend time with the rest of the family. There were a couple of hiccups during the trip (my cast about ruined me and Gavin had a little tummy bug), but the trip was well worth it! Lila definitely delivered on the sweet, cuddly, perfect newborn factor, the boys and Nate did tons of fun stuff together, and the adults were able to enjoy the best hot wings in the world. I am bummed I won't be able to see Scott and his family over the Christmas holiday, but look forward to our next visit. Who knew I would cry while writing a blog post???
They are a mess and make a mess while together!
I love this baby girl so much! Don't you think she looks like her aunt?
I am just not the aunt she looks like :-)
Noah had his Christmas program at CBS last week. I was so proud of him standing up there and doing what he had rehearsed. It made me feel a bit accomplished as a mom.
I am sure the mom of this king was very proud of her son, but I wish he hadn't stood right there the whole time! I mean, how I am supposed to get a good shot! :-)
Hello all! Though I have been sitting on the couch for the last few weeks with a big cast on my foot, I have yet to do all of my blog updating as planned. The boys are at David's parents house for the night, so I have thought I better post some Halloween pics before the next holiday is upon us!
Noah had fun "carving" his pumpkin. Halloween was just a few days after my surgery, so church wasn't an option that morning. So, the boys dressed up in their costumes and watched Toy Story! Like many families, we too are infected with the Toy Story bug. Noah wanted to be Buzz so bad, so his Grammy got him the extra nice Buzz costume that has light up wings. I had other (free) costumes for Gavin, but thought it only appropriate that he was Woody! Our trick-or-treating crew Noah did such a great job leading the little ones around the neighborhood. He walked so much that the poor thing got leg cramps that night! I know this isn't a face shot of Gavin, but I had to capture Gavin's determination at keeping that silly hat on. He walked around with his hand on his head most of the night. And last and definitely least, here is a picture of my cast and my LIFE-SAVING knee scooter. I have crutches for short distances, but this invention has saved me over the past three weeks. I can wheel around the house and do about anything. You should see people look at me at the store!!! Who knew a scooter could be so intriguing!
David and I closed on the purchase of our second home on August 30th. The process was delightfully painless, but the moving experience was a whole different story. Though the friends and family that helped out were excellent, the move was sandwiched between two major trips not to mention we moved from a 4,000 square foot rental to about 1750 square feet in our new home. Believe me, I am NOT complaining about the size of our new home. It really is perfect for us. We just got used to the space-especially the closet space-of the rental. After we returned from our second trip, I felt like the boxes would be with us forever. Fortunately, we have settled in nicely, and the boxes that have been unopened have made their way to the basement, so I don't have to look at them!
I really LOVE our new home. After the initial stress of the move/unpacking, I have a peace and thankfulness about the home that the Lord provided for us. He really did orchestrate the whole plan perfectly as He always does. This home was meant to be our first home in Seneca.
Here it is:
Our home was built in 1964. A Furman professor and his family lived here until 2 years ago. The house was abandoned until our friends from church purchased it, gutted it, renovated it and sold it to us! Please note that since my last home, I have changed my decorating taste a bit. I don't plan on keeping the walls bare forever, but I didn't want to wait until I finished decorating to post the pics!
When you walk in the front door, you enter the living room. I am proud of the Karastan rug on the floor that retails for at least $2,000. My mother-in-law purchased it for us as a house warming gift for $65 at a yard sale!
You head out of the living room into the kitchen. Everything in the kitchen is new! They did a nice job with it.
We do not have a dining room, but are thankful for our large eat in kitchen.
The original owner added this den on to the back of the house. I LOVE it! We have no plans for this room. Right now, we use it for what we need it for...toys!
All of the bedrooms/bathrooms are down one hallway. We haven't painted yet, but I am thankful that the neutral colors work for now.
The guest bathroom
The guest bedroom
The boys room. There are no decorations because we will be removing the crib and double bed soon for a trundle bed. I figured I would wait to decorate until after I did some rearranging.
Though I haven't decorated our room yet, I am super proud of my new bedspread. I wanted simple and clean.
Here is the backyard. Though we are far from finishing this project, it has come a long way. There was NO grass three weeks ago. David has been tending to his "baby" diligently. I look forward to using this part of our home.
The basement is a basement right now, so no pics needed!
There it is! We pray that when people come into our home they feel loved and welcomed. Thank you Lord for your provision.
So, I know in past posts I have commented on my lack of posting due to busyness. Well people, I haven't known busy until the last couple months of my life. So, I thought I would catch you up with our family's goings on in a collection of declarative/exclamatory sentences.
1. We have had magnificent vacations in the month of August and September, but we are SO glad to be home.
2. The last vacation was to the beach to celebrate my mom's birthday, and thanks to mom, Aunt Jane and Abatha, it was so relaxing.
3. On August 30th, David and I purchased a home in Seneca, SC! It is amazing how good it feels to feel completely settled in our present season.
4. My foot has been broken for about 3 and 1/2 months now, so on October 27th, I will have surgery on my foot. This surgery will hopefully fix the bunion (which caused the break).
5. I may be in a cast for 6 weeks. That means all baths and no driving!
6. My arthritis seems to be "spreading" to my right hand, so after the surgery, I will be starting a drug to help keep my symptoms at bay.
7. Church is awesome! I will be starting up the Mom 'n Tots group in the next month or so. I am excited about the possibilities of this ministry, but also a bit anxious about how to help it become successful.
8. Gavin is a mess. He loves to sing "Baby" by Justin Beiber. He is addicted to juice and could play the guitar all day.
9. The boys share a room in our new house. Every one out of two nights is a disaster. I hope to increase our success rate soon.
10. Noah can write his own name and loves to color. He definitely enjoys playing outside and going to his class at Community Bible Study. He doesn't like to take naps. I have a battle everyday.
Hopefully I will add some pictures again some day...when I find my camera.
Three days after we returned from Alaska the boys, mom and I packed up the car and headed to St. Louis. As always, we had a great trip. The boys get along so well and Scott and Abatha are the BEST hosts!
We spent time at the park,
played with Buzz Lightyear,
cooled off in the fountains,
went through about 50 sparklers, (Yes, that is my son holding something on fire! We thought the day would never come!)
Juneau was our second stop on the trip. We spent our time exploring beautiful Glacier Gardens and the Mendenhall Glacier. Glacier Gardens is located inside a national rainforest.
The flowers that they grow in this place are amazing. Everything was so green and lush. These are actually trees flipped upside down and flowers planted in the roots.
I wonder how much these hanging baskets would cost at Lowe's? I can see why many people get married here!
We then headed to the Mendenhall Glacier. This was my favorite stop of the entire trip. It was hard to comprehend that this "piece" of ice was formed back in the Ice Ages.
The turquoise color was magnificent!
Our next stop was Skagway. We were all pretty much exhausted, so we spent our time in Skagway enjoying the town and the fresh air.
David seemed to enjoy this picture taking point of view on our trip.
It was a quaint little town with breathtaking scenery.
And of course, we ate!
We spent the next two days at sea. It was so nice to rest, read and...eat! The boat provided great entertainment and lots of things to do. I was so relaxed I have very few photos documenting these days. Here are a couple of me and the hubby all dressed up.
I loved our pizza makers!
We ended our port stops in Victoria, British Columbia. It was a short visit (4 hours), so we toured what we could. It is another beautiful place! Here is Parliament.
It cost a mere $360 a night to stay at the Empress Hotel.
Because of the rain they get, their flowers are BEAUTIFUL. David kept making us sit down in the flowers for pictures.
Victoria at night
On our last night, David went out with a bang and won the Princess Pop Star Idol!
What a great trip! I will be forever thankful to Gary and Rhonda for this opportunity. It so amazing to see God's beauty and majesty outside your everyday surroundings. He is so great and so mighty!
How lovely is your dwelling place, oh Lord Almighty!