Back in December

>> Saturday, May 20, 2017

Almost every post on this blog has been about Lily.  So today, I thought we could go back to December for a minute, before she was born.  Especially since I found some cute pictures of the girls I hadn't touched yet :)

I was craving a doughnut and decided to take Georgia and Phe to Dunkin Donuts.  It was a particularly gorgeous and windy day, so we ate our doughnuts outside.

I sometimes miss the days before Lily.  I also sometimes miss the days before Phoenix!  But it's amazing how I can love the days I'm in, and miss those days at the same time.  I would never wish I didn't have Phe, or didn't have Lily... I just wish I could've bottled up those sweet times so I'd be able to revisit them now.  That's when I'm SO grateful for pictures and videos.

They have added so much to my life... I am just so grateful God saw fit to make me their mother.
I look at them and really can't believe they're my daughters.

Well, sometimes I can ;)

This season has been so hard on her.  She's confused, but doesn't know what she's confused about.  I mean, I'm confused a lot of times!  Our life is so turned upside down right now.  And I'm trying so hard to be what she needs.  To be what all three of these girls need.  Sometimes I start to feel like I'm not enough, and then I remember... I'm not.  But God is, and He is gracious, and He carries us.  Through my weak moments, I look to Him, and He is there.

I've been coming back to Psalm 28:7 -
"The Lord is my strength and my shield; in Him my heart trusts, and I am helped; my heart exults, and with my song I give thanks to Him."

When I am weak, He is always strong.  He is how and why I am able to continue pressing on each day.

She heard an airplane ;)

Whatever your hurdle is right now, whatever crazy situation you're in, whatever hardship you're facing... turn to Jesus.  He will be your strength, and He will carry you.


Lily's Blanket

>> Thursday, May 18, 2017

Just a few days before Lily turned 4 months old, I finally finished her baby blanket!  About time, right?

When I landed on this pattern for her blanket, I really loved it.  The chart is easy to memorize, not complicated, and turns out beautifully!  But about a third of the way through, I was really not liking it.  I didn't even want to touch it.  I'm sure it was a mix of hormones, and life being crazy... but it was weird.

I finally made myself pick it back up, and then wondered why I ever stopped.

I'm so happy with the outcome.  The pattern, the size, the yarn.  I hope Lily loves it as well.

You can find the pattern - along with my project info - on my Ravelry page, here!

I know people usually say to alternate skeins fairly often when working with hand-dyed yarn, but for most projects, I actually like the way it knits up one skein at a time.

I really can't get over how beautiful this colorway is!
I might have to make a Half-Sized Hippo with my leftover yarn :)


Lily | Four Months

>> Wednesday, May 17, 2017

I typed 'Four Months' and thought "Wait, is that right?"
She grows and matures right before our eyes every day!

She loves playing with toys, and I have a feeling she'll be crawling before too long.  She certainly wants to keep up with her big sisters!  She's a major chatter box and loves having conversations (mostly consisting of baby yells and squeals).

I finally got her blanket finished - woohoo!  I'll be post more about it soon.

This face cracked me up!!


One year ago...

>> Tuesday, May 2, 2017

This date holds conflicted emotions for me.  On this morning one year ago, I got the faintest of faint lines on an early pregnancy test (like, 95% of people would likely tell me it was negative, but I tested again two days later and got a much clearer line).

Also one year ago, I started on a very difficult journey.  A journey I didn't fully comprehend until 6 months later.  It is the day my trust in my husband was completely shaken for the first time.  My best friend, my favorite human in the universe, the person I had become "one" with 4.5 years prior, the one I couldn't imagine living life without... and the next 6 months were filled with many things that continued to cause me to lose my trust in him.

I didn't open up to anyone about it during this time.  I believe that was for two reasons: 1) I did not want to give anyone a bad image of him, certainly if he didn't actually deserve it.  2) The people I would normally open up to were dealing very closely with my Dad's battle with cancer, and the last thing I wanted to do was add this burden to their lives.

Looking back, I should've opened up about it, and I know they would've wanted me to do so as well.  But as they say, hindsight is 20/20.  If I had known the depth of my situation, I think I would've done a lot of things differently.  But in the moment, I doubted myself a lot.  I was pregnant, hormonal, emotional about my Dad, emotional about moving to a new state with no friends, and overwhelmed by all of it.  I did a lot of assuming that my hormones were ruling my thoughts... but they weren't.  Turns out, I actually had a pretty level head about it all.

Almost 6 months later, I was really struggling with everything.  I had been praying and pleading with God.  I was at the point of simply not knowing what to do anymore.  I was finally ready to talk to someone else about it all and figure out how we could fix this.  And that is when he came clean about everything.  Every time I had confronted him and he convinced me it didn't happen, it actually did.  Everything I had wondered about and hoped was not true, was true.  I wasn't crazy, I wasn't going insane, I wasn't a psycho wife doubting her husband for no reason.  I was justified in everything I did and thought.

I can't begin to describe the way I felt when my husband told me he didn't want to be married anymore.  Never in a million years did I expect that.  Not even with everything going on.  I always had strong hope that we would work through it, no matter how difficult it was.  That's what I was ready to do... but he wasn't.  He simply doesn't want to be married any longer.  He assured me it was nothing I had done, and there was nothing I could do to change his mind.  This was his decision and there was no negotiating.

If you had asked me how I would react to this situation before it happened, I would've told you I would be furious, devastated, and lose my mind.  But that's not what happened.  And I can assure you that is only by the grace of God.  Even in my darkest days, through my Dad's battle with cancer, his death, and now this.  God has shown me His Hand in my life, and has carried me through it all.  He continues to carry me.

Since the night my life took that drastic and unexpected turn 6 months ago, I have begun to find myself again.  Rediscovering my identity as a child of God, mother, daughter, sister, friend.  I never thought I'd find myself in this position, and never wanted to be here.  Yet here I am.  There are so many hurdles and challenges that lay ahead for our family.  And just as He always has, God will carry us through them.

[May 2nd, 2016]

These girls have experienced so much this year that a 4 and 2 year old shouldn't have to.  They've been considerably strong in the face of something they don't understand.  We haven't told them the extent of what is happening.  All they know is that their daddy is in Iraq, and that's enough for now.  I would appreciate your prayers for the time when we do explain this to them.

God has blessed me with amazing family and wonderful friends who have supported, loved, and encouraged me this year.  I thank God for you all and the way He has used you in my life.  I can't imagine going through this without my Savior or all of you.

Philippians 4:4-7
Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice.
Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand;
do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.
And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

So thankful for that peace... I can't even fully comprehend... only by God's grace.

[April 29th, 2017]

[this post is shared with the approval of all parties involved]


Easter [2017]

>> Monday, May 1, 2017

Happy May!  I thought I'd share a few pictures from our Easter this year.

After celebrating the resurrection of our Savior at church, we came home and the girls got their Easter baskets and had a little egg hunt in the front yard!  Every Easter the girls get a new teacup & saucer for their collection, and a new swimsuit for the upcoming season of swimming.  For each of their first Easters their teacup set included a matching plate.  I love starting new, and carrying on old traditions!  Growing up, my brother and I always got a new swimsuit for Easter.

We fell in love with these dresses from Old Navy!  It worked out well since they had matching leggings in Lily's size!

They found all their eggs, filled with Tsum Tsums and candies!

Love these girls to pieces!!!

The Magnolias smell soooo good.  I love when they bloom.