She is obsessed with Theo the hedgehog these days. She wants to go see him first thing every morning and tell him good night every night before she goes to bed.
Watching this man love this boy has made me fall in love all over again with him.
I was so honored to get to interview Max Lucado for the podcast — look for his fantastic episode coming up soon!
I love this picture so much because that’s Kathrynne cheering Silas on through the fence. She had surprised him and showed up for his game along with some friends of hers and she was speaking such words of encouragement to him when she got there. Watching your kids encourage and be each other’s biggest cheerleaders is one of the greatest gifts as a mom.
I taught her how to feed Theo his food… so she always makes sure that he has plenty now. Maybe more than plenty! 🙂
As Baby D grows and learns new skills, more and more they can play together and they have the best time! She adores him and he gets so excited to play with her.
This might not seem like a big deal… but this is actually huge for Baby D. This was the first day he was ever able to hold himself in this position (on all fours)!
We are so proud of this boy!! In the last four weeks he has accomplished some major milestones: getting his first two teeth (a big sign of nutrition and that he is no longer malnourished!), learning to sit up (he can hold a non-prop sit for up to 5 minutes sometimes!), holding a hands and knees position for at least 20 seconds, starting a blended diet (real food) through his feeding tube instead of formula, pushing up with extended arms and holding it, improving his spacial awareness and fine motor skills.
Case in point, in feeding therapy last week he got excited about eating and grabbed a teething biscuit offered to him and put it in his mouth (he’s never grabbed something and put it intentionally in his mouth! He doesn’t know how to chew and swallow it yet, but wanting it and knowing to pick it up and put it in your mouth is a great start to getting there!)
Some of these might seem like tiny wins or things you would take for granted, but they are a BIG deal for him!! We are so grateful for his therapists and doctors who have gone above and beyond to help him and us these past 6 months (truly… multiple medical professionals have given us their personal cell phone numbers and have texted and called off hours to check on him when he’s been going through a rough patch!) I have never had greater respect or appreciation for medical teams and therapists as I do these days and we know that this boy would not be here if it weren’t for them (he was born at 27 weeks weighing one pound!!)
He is a miracle in every sense of the word and the joy that he brings to our home is hard to adequately put into words. We love you to the moon and back little boy and are so grateful for your life. You are such a gift to our home!
Baby D’s new food! Such a milestone to move from formula to this and he’s done so well!
They’ve started to be able to play together in the playpen together — and it’s the sweetest to watch.
Mamas, let your kids witness you relying upon God.
Last week, I spoke at the Fresh Grounded Faith event in Chino, CA with @jennrothschild.
It was my first speaking event like this in around two years — and two days before the event, I almost completely lost my voice.
Silas — who was coming with me to the event — said to me, “Mom, I don’t know how you’re going to be able speak with your voice like that.” I told him, “I’m just trusting that God is going to show up and help me.”
I did all the things: rest my voice, drink hot throat coat tea, take local honey, take throat lozenges, drink probiotic drinks, eat Ruffles potato chips (my singer friend @katerapier told me about this trick), and I even drank some sort of mushroom potion Jesse bought for me at Whole Foods.
Even after all of this, my voice was still hoarse and I felt like it was on the brink of going out completely at any moment.
Y’all. God showed up on my behalf when I stepped onto that stage. Not only was my voice strong for the entire 35 minutes, but I barely even looked at the few notes I had written down. Instead, I just felt His power coursing through me to deliver a message on the freedom I’ve found in Christ as I’ve stopped believing lies and starting camping on and immersing myself in the truth of how much I am loved by God.
And my boy was on the front row watching all of this. He got to see God’s faithfulness to his mama in such a profound way.
God doesn’t need us to be strong, capable, or have it all together. He just asks us to be willing, to say yes, and to step out in faith. We can trust Him for the rest!
Thank you to @crosspointchino for these two photos (above and below).
Little did I ever dream that I’d be packing a breast pump in my speaking suitcase when I was 40 years old! Only God!
Traveling with a 12-year-old boy revolves around food… his most common questions on the trip were something like, “When are we eating? Where are we eating? What are we eating?”
It was beautiful in Chino, CA!
The ladies at the church rolled out the welcome mat for us — including giving us a gift bag as soon as we got to the hotel!
My publisher made this new banner for speaking engagements to advertise Love-Centered Parenting.
The church fed us an incredible dinner and breakfast! We felt so welcomed and looked out for.
Jennifer Rothschild was such an inspiration. She’s been fully blind since age 15… but she’s not letting that hold her back one bit!
It was a true honor to hear Joni Eareckson Tada speak. In the midst of quadraplegia, two cancer diagnoses, and intense chronic pain, she chooses to be a victor instead of victim.
During our Q&A time, I literally had tears rolling down my face from laughing so hard. These two women are true inspirations and it was humbling to be on the same stage as them!
Silas’ only request was that if we were going to CA that we had to stop at an In-N-Out. One of the ladies heard that he was really excited to go to In-N-Out and she asked if she could give me money to buy him a shirt!
It’s such a gift to get one-on-one time with our kids! I love that speaking engagements double as special time for memory-making with one of my kids!
While I was gone, the girls had Homecoming at school. Isabel (pictured with Kathrynne here) is almost like a daughter to us/sister to our kids. I’m so grateful for the wonderful friends our kids have… and that we get to know and love so many of them because they spend so much time at our house! Having teens is the best — except that Isabel leaves for college next year. But we’re trying not to think about that right now. 🙂
Every morning, these two lay on the bed together and watch a show. She usually has her hand on him. The relationship they have is just beautiful. Little did I ever envision I’d get the blessing of mothering littles again!
My friend, Kate, passed on this activity center to us for Baby D since her Gigi had outgrown it. He LOVES it! And it’s perfect for him to sit in during his feeds.
Kierstyn was convinced to find a way to sit in it with him! 🙂
Thanks to Jamie Ivey, Kierstyn has a her first set of crayons — and she loves them!
It was a Baked Oatmeal week! We had this for breakfast one day this past week (it’s a family favorite!) and I shared it on Instagram… and then people all over the country started making it and posting about it. It’s the perfect time of year to make it because it’s such a warm, hearty, and comforting breakfast!
Rebekah Lyons came for a podcast interview this past week, too. Her words of encouragement on living A Surrendered Life and mothering a child with Down Syndrome blessed and encouraged me so much!
I love this picture so much! Watching my friend, Kate, step into motherhood this past year has been such a gift. She’s a fellow foster mom and her smile says it all.
Foster care is hard. Really hard. And it’s been especially hard since she’s single and is fostering alone. But she bravely said yes to a call for a little baby girl a year ago… and who would have ever envisioned that a year later Gigi would be celebrating her first birthday as Kate’s DAUGHTER!!
I’m just constantly inspired by her love and by the way she loves so well. And I’m so grateful for gift of her friendship. Who knew that foster care would also gift me such a beautiful community of women who have become dear, dear friends?!
Speaking of foster moms, I also went to a new-to-me meet-up of foster and adoptive moms this past week. We had a Trader Joe’s dip tasting in addition to a time of sharing and encouragement. It was a blessing to hear from other moms who are walking similar journeys.