Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Cora: 9 Months

What a sweet season of life this is! Cora's personality is in full swing. She is determined and bousterious, strong-willed and joyful. She brings smiles to faces wherever we go.

Cora is an amazing little eater! We started doing Baby Led Weaning when she turned six months old and she continues to amaze us! She does an incredible job feeding herself and loves everything from scrambled eggs to hummus and broccoli. She continues to nurse frequently throughout the day as well. She has two teeth with more on the way!

Sleep is not this girl's strong suite! :) Similar to her mama she likes to nap (and does multiple times a day), but she still struggles to sleep through the night. It's a continuous work in progress :). However, the last few nights have been her best, yet. Maybe we're at a turning point?! 

Cora loves Moses (and she is the apple of his eye). Their relationship makes my heart burst. They truly adore each other. She finds him hilarious…and she brings him great joy. They play with next to each other most of the day. They share a common love for duplos and blocks.

She's on the move! Cora is crawling and pulling herself up and moving from one object to another while standing. The baby gates are up and the house is more "baby friendly" than it was months ago.

She's a mommy's girl…and say's "ma-ma" all day to prove it. We definitely have stranger anxiety
going on and trips to the YMCA and church nursery are more tear-filled than they use to be. However, she warms up quickly. She loves our extended family and as long as I'm not in view she does great in their arms.

She's growing! Cora had her 9 month appointment yesterday. She weighs 18lbs 6oz (53rd percentile) and was 27 1/2 inches tall (43rd percentile).

So grateful for this little girl…her crazy faces and warm embrace. She keeps us on our toes and brings us great joy! I can't believe how fast the last NINE MONTHS have gone! Here's to more memories in the making! 

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Oh Christmas Tree

A few weeks ago we went to Hart Tree Farm in Rockford to cut down our Christmas tree. It was cold and snowy and the perfect winter wonderland. We've been looking forward to this since our days in Raleigh and we weren't disappointed! Moses loves the snow and found just as much enjoyment running up and down the rows of trees as he did helping Jim cut down the perfect tree (which he picked out). Cora did great, and drifted off to sleep snuggled in the Ergo as the boys carried the tree back.

Thankful for moments like these…

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Cora: Six Months

I can't believe how fast time is flying…for all that has changed…and all that continues to change.

I have so much to document since I wrote last. But, for today, I'm going to marvel at the fact that my baby girl is six months old (for one more day!).

Cora…my wild child. She has a big "voice" and a sweet heart. She loves her big brother and she smiles and laughs the most when he is around.

She loves to (army) crawl/scoot and move, in general. She likes to sleep in and stay up late (and she loves to snuggle in the night).  Sleep is not her forte in life and she still gets up two to four times a night.  A work in progress and I keep reminding myself that this season will pass and God made coffee for a reason :)

She started eating solid food and she loves avocado, peas and bananas. She isn't too fond of pesto though…(she'll come around ;))

She got sick for the first time this month--and it was brutal. She came down with hand-foot-mout disease and she was quite miserable. We spent a lot of time cuddling and in the bath. The blisters were horrible…and left her throat and bottom red and inflamed. Thankfully she recovered quickly and was back to her spunky self within a week.

We have so much to be grateful for!

Friday, July 11, 2014


For seven years North Carolina has been our home.
We have been stretched and challenged in multiple ways during our time here.
We've become slightly "southernized"(y'all) and our blood has thinned.

We found community.
We were well loved.

…and we are truly going to miss this place.

But, our time here is quickly coming to an end. James accepted a job in the great mitten state. We're excited to do life with family and long time friends, once again.  So while we are ecstatic for what awaits, my heart already mourns for what we're leaving behind (family, friends, community, mild winters, chick-fil-a, & trader joes to name a few :) ).  Yet, in this season of transition…we can see God at work.  His fingerprints are all over this.  There is no doubt that while this is HARD…really hard…it is right where God wants us.

The unknowns are great.
But, good things await…
(and I will learn how to embrace the cold & snow once again!).

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Ocean Isle

It was the perfect getaway...an escape from the reality that my maternity leave was quickly coming to an end. The weather was perfect. A long weekend spent with family (some who traveled long distances to be there). It was a reunion for cousins (and for some it was their first time meeting Cora). Mornings were laid back and lazy...filled with walks on the beach, lots of coffee, amazing cinnamon rolls, and good company. Afternoons were spent at the beach and pool-playing frisbee and football, digging in the sand, and chasing little ones. Evenings were filled with games, ice cream and laughter. No one was ready to say goodbye--to this place of paradise--and each other. But, alas...all good things must come to an end. Until we meet again...

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Mother's Day

Beyond grateful that I get the honor and privilege to be their mom. So thankful for their snuggles and sweet laughter...for challenging moments that continue to teach me more about myself and my need for grace...and the power of coffee...and the words, "I love you"...
They continue to teach me how to love big and see the world through innocent eyes...to see beauty in the simple...and to laugh, often. 

They keep me accountable and keep me coming back to Jesus with gratitude and pleas for patience...and energy...and wisdom to do this life well. 

They keep our home messy...and family meals entertaining. They bring joy, immeasurable joy, to the mundane and fill our lives with an abundance of love. 

Mother's Day...a day that doesn't come without grief, longing and great joy. 

Yet, today the tears are few and the celebration great. Thankful for the role model I had and for this life...what an honor to be a mom to this crazy crew. 

Monday, May 5, 2014

Two Months

Sweet Cora, 
It's hard to believe two months have passed since we met. What a blessing (& adjustment!) the past 9 weeks have been. 

You're growing up so fast. You're much more alert now...and your smiles melt us all. You're cooing as I type this...and you're perfectly content. 

 I treasure our precious time together...and I adore your sweet snuggles (which I get a lot of because you're a lot happier in my arms than out!)

We're eager to see if those baby blues stay and your hair is starting to show signs of curl. 

You adore your brother and he loves to entertain you with his storytelling or crazy dance moves. 

We're so grateful for you! 
We love you, sister. 

Thursday, April 24, 2014

If you were still here...

I would ask you...

...how did you mother four children, keep the house clean, put a nutritious dinner on the table (and have time to research new and exciting recipes), be present in our lives AND have time to sew?

...how did you have time to record all of the minute details of our childhood in great detail (with the most eloquent handwriting) for all four of us? 

...how did you endure those long days with multiple little ones with such so little sleep? Was coffee your best friend, too? 

...what gave you the greatest joy as a mom? ...and what caused you the greatest heartaches? (Besides me...at age 13)

...do you remember when you went to the grocery store for the first time with multiple little ones...and you felt proud of yourself for making it out with a cart full of groceries AND all of us?

I wish I could tell you...

...I no longer blame you (or anyone else) for putting sugar on my paci when my colicky self wouldn't stop crying. I now fully understand such irrational behavior. 

...I now understand your love of catalog shopping. There's something beautiful about not leaving the couch (with a cup of tea/coffee or wine in hand) and ordering clothes. 

...Not a day goes by that our kiddos don't know about you and the love you had for them-long before their time. 

...Moses refers to you as his "Grandma with Jesus". It melts my heart and yet brings me such pain. 

...Being a mom is such a blessing. I wouldn't trade it for the world. So much of who I am is because of you. 

...I appreciate you so much more now...for all you did back then. 


Thursday, April 10, 2014


I am loving my days at home with the kiddos and slowly we are finding a new rhythm to our day. Cora is such a blessing. She loves to be held (and hates to be put down!), she smiles at the sound of Moses' voice, and she has an appetite as big as her brothers! Moses is a big help and finds great delight in Cora and his new role. Although the days have their challenges, it is such a sweet, sweet season and my heart is full. 

Here are a few recent pictures! 
Cora turned one month old on April 3! 

Tigers opening day!
Family walks
Moses loves to dig in the dirt!
Saturday soccer
Farm Days at NC State

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

One Month Ago

On February 19 Moses turned 4! The day started off with a mommy-Moses breakfast date. Moses picked where to go...and Jubala (a local coffee shop) it was. Oh, how I love his sophisticated soul. We celebrated with just the three of us that night with homemade pizza and cake! We had a small family party on Saturday.
The birthday boy!
We gave Moses an authentic Ethiopian soccer jersey and soccer ball.
An airplane cake made by Gigi!

Our family of three (soon to be four!)

Monday, March 17, 2014

Two Weeks

Two weeks ago today Cora made her much anticipated appearance (she was ten days overdue!) The last fourteen days have been full of snuggles and sleepless nights--and it's been nothing short of amazing. Moses has taken on his role of big brother seriously...and it makes my heart swell with joy. These kiddos are such a blessing. Here are a few pictures from the last two weeks! 

Moses had his first soccer game on Saturday. He scored two goals...and had so much fun. It was such a joy to watch (even when he tried scoring on his own team-opps!). 

More to come...

Saturday, March 8, 2014

She's here!

Cora graced us with her presence on Monday March 3 at 7:10pm. 

We're completely in awe of God's goodness and head over heels in love.