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Monday, November 23, 2015


(an anniversary early morning selfie before he was off to work)
Thirteen years ago today I was a nervous and naive bride preparing to walk down the aisle and commit my whole heart and future to my boyfriend of 3 years. My love. I'm sure I imagined each day to be a fairy tale. At age 22 we had so many dreams and hopes in front of us. Those early days I never dreamed of the heartache and trials that God would use in our lives to draw us closer to Him and bond us more tightly together. Infertility. Selfishness. Loneliness. Just to name a few. Letting go of a fairy tale that we had written and clinging to a faithful God to walk us through the story He had written for us. It's been a great story thus far! There has been uncertainty at times. But it's been full of joy and surprises that we never could have imagined on our own so many years ago. So today I'm extra thankful. I'm thankful for God's design of marriage. I'm thankful for God's constant and faithful work in our own marriage.  I'm thankful for a man that loves me. 
A man that makes me laugh alot. 
A man that takes fatherhood seriously.
And a man that I'm confident will still be here, right next to me, in another 13 years.

And I'm so thankful for God's good plans and the story he continues to write for us.

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Pax in 1st grade

This boy is loving 1st grade. You can see Paxton's Kindergarten favorites here. And you can see his Pre-K favorite here.

Holden in 2nd grade

We began our school year on August 31st. Just playing a bit of blog catch up! You can see Holden's 1st grade favorites here and Kindergarten favorites here. It's fun for me to look back! Holden is having a wonderful school year in 2nd grade!

Sunday, November 8, 2015

August 6, 2015

Oh to go and redo a day...I would sleep in on August 6th. I considered it. My alarm went off at 4:45am and I thought about texting my two friends and saying I was skipping the run that morning. But it was a typical Thursday morning and I was meeting two girls for an early 4ish mile run. I left my house a little after 5am and ran about half a mile to meet up with them. When I met up with them I made a u-turn so we were headed back in the direction of my neighborhood. I was following closely behind them. Apparently, too closely. You know so I could be involved in conversation, because why else do you run with friends? I always enjoy the conversation and distraction. Then just as quickly as our conversation began, I hit an uneven part of a sidewalk and bit it. Because I was so close to them I didn't see the the step up. I hit the ground hard. My memory is fuzzy but I don't think I even stumbled or had time to react. It was not a slow-mo movement. I just hit the ground fast and hard. I had a small water bottle in my right hand and I was still gripping it as I lay on the concrete. I had attempted to catch myself with my left hand. And that was the arm I knew was injured. Before getting off the ground I said, "I'm going to need to head home. Y'all go on." I knew I was hurt. It wasn't a - dust your knees off and keep running type of thing. My friends walked me home. Later they told me that my speech was slurred on the walk home and I wasn't walking straight. I was a little tipsy. I kept saying I felt like I was going to pass out. But adrenaline got me home and during the walk I wasn't crying or feeling much pain. Good ole adrenaline. The fall happened about 1/2 mile from my house. I called my dad as I walked so he could come and sit with my boys. I knew Jeremy would be taking me to the ER as soon as possible. And as soon as I saw my husband, the blessed adrenaline was depleted and excruciating pain set in. Thankfully we didn't have to wait long for my dad and we headed to a nearby ER around 5:45am or so. The place was empty and I was seen right away. There they gave me some drugs, confirmed with a painful x-ray that I did indeed break the radius. My arm was kind of funky looking. We knew it was broken without the x-ray. And then that sweet ER doctor set the broken bone. God bless him...all the while he was yanking my arm in the air attempting to set the bone and I was trying my best not to curse he was saying something like, "I could never be an orthopedic. They have to do this to people all the time." I think he said that phrase several times. He also informed me during that visit that we would most likely be looking at surgery in a few days. Boo. At this point, I can't remember some details. 1) I was on drugs. 2) It has now been 3 months ago. But I think it was that afternoon that we saw the Orthopedic. Man, she was wonderful. If my little family ever needs another Orthopedic she will be our girl. When we started trying to figure out childcare for my surgery date, she looked at me with the most compassionate eyes. She had just realized that I was a mommy to little ones and she knew far better than I did what a challenge life was going to be for me due to this injury and the weeks that were ahead. She is also a mommy to little ones and so she quickly won an imaginary prize for best bedside manner and compassion. I'm going to spare you the 6 week saga of recovery from surgery. It was a rough 6 weeks. Full of tears and frustrations. Apparently, not everyone can break their arm as good as I can. My Occupational Therapist, who I'm still seeing weekly, calls it "my very special wrist fracture". It is called a galeazzi fracture. If I understand it correctly, it means that I broke the bone (the radius), displaced the joint and created and whole lot of ligament damage in the process. A few weeks ago, after a follow up with my doctor, the truth leaked out. I got a strong impression that she never expected my arm to fully recover from this injury. So the fact that I had as much movement as I did at my last follow up made my doctor really happy. Both my doctor and OT say that I am way ahead of the game. I'm further than they expected me to be at this point. If I didn't want to live a physically active life, I would probably be okay with where I am right now. They tell me that I'm at a "functional" place with my forearm rotation and wrist movement. But functional doesn't include push ups and those types of things that have become a normal part of my week. I haven't exercised at all since the day of my fall. I've now been cleared to run, I just need to get out there and do it once in the daylight. I have not been cleared to go back to Camp Gladiator and I probably won't for several more months. I've missed it. But my left arm is not ready for weights or push ups and planks at this point. I'm no longer in constant pain, but many things do cause pain. But it's supposed to be a good pain, so I do those things anyways. Lifting Abe and carrying heavy things is painful, but it's forcing my arm to move in ways that it doesn't want to move yet. I'm trying to push it out of it's comfort zone and stretch it a little further every day. I'm 2 months in to rehab and I've been told I have 4 months left. The morning that I broke my arm, I honestly thought that I would be in a cast for a month or two and then I would be good. I never actually went into a cast, but instead a permanent 6 week splint. I never imagined this would go on for nearly 8 months. And I'm sure it's good that I didn't know the severity of it all. Those first 6 weeks took a toll on me physically and emotionally. I was in a funk. But I am definitely on the upswing of things now. Things are improving each week. And that my friends is what happened to me on August 6, 2015. A few pictures from this unexpected little twist in my life.
 At the ER with a funky shaped arm.
 Jeremy taking off all my nail polish the night before surgery. This man... acts of service is a way he easily shows love. That is what comes naturally for him. And he was a total rockstar through this whole ordeal. He kept up with the house, the laundry, meals and made sure our little guys felt loved. Not to mention, being my set of hands and caring for me. I know it was stressful for him and I must have apologized a billion times for getting us into this predicament. But he was simply amazing. When the going gets tough, Jeremy shines.
And by the end of the 6 weeks, he could totally rock a ponytail for me. I had some sad, sad hair for a couple of months. Try doing your hair with only one hand. Not pretty. Also try putting on a bra or washing your hair or putting on deodorant. Oh I was a mess. And Jeremy had to do just about everything for me.
 I can't believe I'm even posting this one. Jeremy sent it to my parents with the caption "the lunch lady is ready for surgery". Haha. Sometimes he's so funny, at my expense. But still funny.
Post surgery. Finally getting some snuggles from my little guy. It was a hard adjustment when I suddenly couldn't hold and take care of him.
 Jeremy was home with me for a week. And then family and friends helped out for a few days and took care of some meals. That was a blessing.
And these two boys were the other rockstars at our house. They had to open sippy cups and peanut butter jars. They had to get Abe from his crib for me. And here they are washing the grapes and removing them from the vine. They didn't have me serving them much at all and instead it was their turn to serve me. It was good for them. And I very rarely heard a complaint.
 I won't lie. My boys watched A LOT of TV during my recovery.
 My hand...I think the doctor realized at my next visit that the medical assistant had wrapped me too tightly. I mean!! Swelling was normal post surgery, but look at the size of that hand!
 In the picture above I think I was two weeks post surgery. They unwrapped me to check the incision and pin. I didn't realize until this moment that there was a pin HANGING out of my wrist. I nearly passed out. I knew I had a metal plate and some other new metal in my arm. But I didn't know anything was coming externally out of my skin. But it was keeping my wrist stable so I wouldn't rotate my forearm at all. The radius is the bone that rotates while the ulna does not, so it needed to be stabilized during the healing process.
Then I was moved to this uncomfortable contraption that was made and molded to fit me. Let me just be honest and say they were all uncomfortable. But this one I hated the most.
 Peeling, crusty, dirty, stinky arm. 6 weeks post op and x-rays were done. Bones were healed. But still I was in a ton of pain. It made no sense. I was taken out of the permanent splint and put in this removable one...
At this point, this was as far as I could straighten my arm. It had been bent at 90 degrees for 6+ weeks. Today I can almost straighten it all the way.
 First thing on the agenda was a bath so I could wash my arm.
 The picture above is showing how I couldn't rotate my forearm.
And now I can turn it almost completely palm up. Palm down is a struggle, but I'm making progress. And Bio Oil is doing wonders for my scar. I've come a long way and I've got a little longer to go.

Friday, October 30, 2015

Diaper Free Zone!

Our home is now a diaper free zone. And it really has been since July. Abe was ready and we went with it. It was pretty painless and effortless on my part. The boy did amazing! Because of my incident (I've yet to go into here, but I will) we didn't get to do our special trip to Build-A-Bear until late August. But Abe and I eventually had our date, just as I did with the other two boys (Holden's is documented here and Paxton's here).
 Headed in. He was underwhelmed by the whole experience.
 My puppy loving boy chose an actual teddy bear.
 Bathing and brushing it's hair.
 Then it was no surprise at all that he dressed his bear as a firefighter. He has been completely obsessed with both fire trucks and firemen for quite some time.
We ended our evening with a scoop of vanilla icecream. I'm so proud of this little guy who caught on so quickly to potty training. He continues to grow up right before my very eyes.

Pax's Celebration

In lieu of a party, Pax had some time with a neighbor friend to celebrate his birthday. We picked up Andrew on Friday morning. Conveniently for us, this friend goes to a nearby University model school and is home on Fridays! And we headed out for bowling and a pancake lunch at IHOP. That's what the birthday boy wanted and so that is what he got. I was not feeling 100% and didn't take very many pictures, but here are the ones I did take.
 Andrew and Pax
 The whole crew of boys
 This guy would have bowled all day. The other three, not so much. But Pax is just so easy going and has a great attention span for activities. Plus he really loves bowling.
Abe's first try at bowling.

Later that afternoon the rest of Pax's birthday gifts had arrived and were waiting for us on our porch. He loves his special book nook!
Another birthday celebration in the books! I love celebrating with my boys.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Pax's 6th Birthday!

I was not feeling great on Pax's birthday but he didn't seem to mind. And I don't think he even remembers my condition two months later. At one point a week earlier he said to me, "I have a feeling your arm is still going to be broken on my birthday". So I started getting worried this his 6th birthday was just going to be the worst. Yes, I was a little dramatic about the whole deal. My sweet husband reminded me that if our children can't roll with these types of punches (birthday or not) then we've got much bigger issues in our family. True. So I didn't feel good. But we kept it low key and I faked it. His two big wishes on his special day was donuts and board games. Easy. Done deal.

Because Pax's birthday fell on a Wednesday and we have church activities on that night, we opted to take him out to dinner the night before on Tuesday. Chili's is still one of his faves. It's the same place he chose last year.
The waiters sang to him which he really, really wanted and enjoyed. In fact at one point he almost cried during dinner because he thought that Jeremy or I was not going to let the waitstaff know it was his birthday. Jeremy had already told them in secret so Pax could be surprised. They even brought him some ice cream.
Birthday tradition to open a gift from the brothers first thing. Holden and Pax had been talking about this robot boxing game from our church. So Holden picked this one out for Pax and he was so excited as soon as he saw the box.
 Breakfast of Champions! I love this picture.
And then we let the games begin...
I played a few rounds of Sorry. One of my favorites.
We ate cake all week because that's what you do on your birthday week, right?
 White cake with buttercream icing is his favorite....just like his mama. Unless you offer me carrot cake. Or lemon. :)
Wednesday night after we returned home from our church activities, he opened the rest of his gifts from us.
A new CD player for his room along with some Chris Tomlin and Toby Mac CDs.
A lamp and some new chapter books to go in the book nook. We put together a little book nook in his room as part of his birthday gifts. He loves to sit and read so now he has a special place to do just that.
Legos! He is our lego boy and he loves to sit and build.
And a plasma car. He had been wanting one of these for a while after riding his cousins.
It was a good day of celebrating our boy! And I know that he loved every minute!