April 30, 2014

easter 2014

Easter has become one of my favorite holidays, especially now that we have kids.  We have settled on a few traditions that we are enjoying and that help to make the season more meaningful for us.  We painted eggs like we do every year - the kids always really love doing this together.  We also decorated some to make a little space village using this adorable kit that I found at Target.  The kids really loved this one and we had a lot of fun with it.

We made Resurrection Cookies the night before Easter.  This was our first year making these, but we will definitely be doing this again.  It was a really great visual for the kids as we made them together and we really talked through both the Crucifixion and the Resurrection.  We also read "Benjamin's Box" and did Resurrection Eggs again this year.  The kids looked forward to this every night, and this was also such a special time for us and we had some great conversations together.

We couldn't have asked for a more beautiful Easter Day.  The weather was gorgeous - perfect for celebrating His Resurrection!

April 23, 2014

six years old

This sweet boy was six years old yesterday.

It's so true what they say - the days are most definitely long, but the years are so, so short.

Like most mamas do on their children's birthdays, I was thinking back to the day Caleb was born.  We were so excited to finally get to meet this precious baby that we had been waiting on for so long (it took us quite awhile to even get pregnant), but we were also so very nervous.  I was pretty scared (terrified) about the whole labor thing.  We were eleven days past our due date when we went in to be induced.  Then we waited all day long for our little guy to get moving, but he never did drop.  He had no plans on coming out that day on his own, so we eventually decided that we would have to go in and get him.  I had a c-section that night and our sweet boy came into the world. 

Looking back, I realize that the way he entered the world is the way he's been ever since.  He has his own time frame, and it's not necessarily the way that we think it should be.  But he gets there - sometimes with great pushing and prodding and encouraging from us - but he does get there.  And when he does, it's usually with a bang!  

My sweet Caleb,

You are six years old now, and you are such an amazing little boy.  You are full of energy and you are so funny.  You have the most wonderful laugh - especially when you get a deep belly-laugh going!  You are always moving, whether it's running, or dancing, or doing flips.  You like to sing and have started to request certain songs when we are in the car.  And you always want it louder!

You love your sister and you are a very good big brother.  You look out for her and care for her, and you also tease her and pick on her and try to boss her around.  You know - typical big brother stuff!

You and your daddy have such a special, sweet relationship.  You love doing anything with him - whether it's playing outside, fixing things around the house, or climbing onto his shoulders. He is so patient and loving with you and is always teaching you how to do things.  I love watching the two of you together!

You have good manners and are always so polite.  You thank me all the time for the littlest of things - from making you a bowl of popcorn (your favorite snack right now) to washing your favorite pajamas so you can wear them again!  You tell me almost every morning when I come downstairs all dressed, "You look beautiful, mommy!"  

You have the most incredible personality that is just shining brighter and brighter every day!  You are so smart - I have no doubt that you will be much smarter than your daddy and me one day.  We get to see little glimpses of what and how you are thinking through things, and it just blows us away sometimes when we realize what is going on in that head of yours.  You are the most precious gift from God, and I am so very grateful that He chose us to be your parents.

Happy birthday, sweet boy!

I love you bunches and bunches, forever and ever.


April 2, 2014

this is our story

Today is Autism Awareness Day.

I haven't talked about autism here on the blog before, but it feels like it's time that I do.  Our sweet Caleb was diagnosed with autism a little over three years ago, just before his third birthday.  It was not a complete surprise to us, and yet, it was completely shocking.  His diagnosis was simply confirming what we already knew to be true, but no parent can ever be completely prepared to hear the words or to read it in print.  

A lot of time has passed since then, and life for our family looks a whole lot different these days.  We have been through some really difficult days, and we have been through some pretty amazing ones.  There have been days when I didn't know what to do, and I felt like I was failing Caleb in every way possible.  They usually ended with me in tears, praying for God to show me what in the world I was supposed to be doing for him.  And there have been days when Caleb has done something so incredible - something that we weren't sure he would ever be able to do or something to show us how smart he really is.  Those days probably ended with me in tears as well, thanking God for his faithfulness and marveling at the work that He is doing in my son.  
 The newest numbers show that one in sixty-eight children has autism.  If those numbers don't make you stop and think, they should.  If your family hasn't been affected by autism, it will be.  It's only a matter of time.  Maybe not directly, but in some way, we are all being affected.  These children deserve for us to become more aware, more tolerant, more understanding, and more accepting.   
This boy is my little rock star.  He is my life and my love, and he walks around with a piece of my heart wherever he goes.  He is the most precious gift from God, and I am so very grateful that I get to be his momma.
He is our one in sixty-eight. 

{all pictures are from the Autism Walk we participated in last October}
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