Thursday, January 17, 2013

Snow 2013

Blake and Gracie had a blast playing in the snow!  It was certainly more snow than we anticipated.
Sweet Gracie could not tolerate the snow for long, she is not a fan of getting cold.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Shower for Baby Levi

 I have the sweetest friends who threw a baby shower for Baby Levi!  I was overwhelmed by all the sweet ladies (and sweet young ladies) who came out to celebrate this exciting time!

Everything was beautiful- of course, because #2 can throw a heck of a party.  Levi is BLESSED to have so many friends and family who already love him.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Landry's Birthday Party

Gracie sure did enjoy Landry's 4th Birthday Party this weekend.  She loves Landry, cake, playgrounds, and presents so this was her idea of a fun day.  

Gracie experienced "the ball pit" for the first time.  She was absolutely in love.  When we left, I made sure that she left all the balls behind- the germs....probably not.  It was totally worth it.

 Happy Birthday Landry!

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Apple of my Eye

Gracie loves to eat apples like a "big girl."  She will ask me to wash two apples and sit on the couch with her while we both chomp down on some Red Delicious.  I love to watch her learn to do new things- even eating an apple.  I told her that she is the "apple of my eye."  That got me to thinking.... what does that mean exactly?

Wikipedia defines this phrase as "Someone who one loves above any other."  Too often this is the case with Gracie.  I look at her in complete amazement.  The things she has learned over the last 3.5 years is astonishing.  Blake and I too often put our relationship with Gracie above our relationship with each other.  Even worse, before our relationship with Christ.

I told Blake this morning how conflicted and anxious I am about Levi's arrival.  I want to cherish Gracie's last weeks as an only child.  I worry that I cannot juggle the attention of 2 young children and 1 sweet husband.  I worry that I won't be able to love another child as much as I love this one.  I worry that Gracie will resent me for adding another baby.

I believe this is all the work of the enemy.  Of course, Gracie will have plenty of special moments regardless of how many brothers and sisters she has.  Of course, I will love this child as much as any other!  Of course, I am capable of great love.  And Gracie is so excited about Levi that she will be the best Big Sister since 1982 when I became one!

"Apple of my eye"  

I found this phrase in the Bible.

Deuteronomy 32:10
He found him in a desert land, and in the waste howling wilderness; he led him about, he instructed him, he kept him as the apple of his eye.
in the Book of Psalms 17:8
Keep me as the apple of the eye, hide me under the shadow of thy wings
in Proverbs 7:2
Keep my commandments, and live; and my law as the apple of thine eye.
Lamentations 2: 18
Their heart cried unto the Lord, O wall of the daughter of Zion, let tears run down like a river day and night: give thyself no rest; let not the apple of thine eye cease.
as well as in Zechariah 2:8
For thus saith the LORD of hosts; After the glory hath he sent me unto the nations which spoiled you: for he that toucheth you toucheth the apple of his eye.

God loves all his children.  We are all "the apple of his eye"  And I can keep this straight in my head.  When things get tough, I need simply to run into the arms of my Savior for strength and reassurance.  I will pray that He shows me how he sees me.  Then I will rest comfortably in His lavish love and turn away thoughts of inadequacy.  Just as sweet Gracie does when she has a tough day, she runs into the arms of her mommy or daddy and rests securely in our love.  And perhaps asks for an apple.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Christmas 2012

This was our best Christmas yet!  What a blessing to be able to see all of our family this year.  Gracie enjoyed all of the time she had with the Gills and Sorianos.  (of course anytime she sees Sydney or Amy is her favorite day)

December 23- Sunday we spent lunch with Granddaddy Gill and family in Alex City.  Gracie walked away with lots of goodies, I won a light up screwdriver and Blake won a little fry daddy.  The screwdriver proved valuable immediately as all the kids were putting batteries in their toys.  
Then we went to my parents house and celebrated with the Vines and Soriano clan.  It was a fun dinner!  Entertainment provided by Gracie and Sydney.

December 24- Christmas Eve we spent as a family of 3 for the last time!  We enjoyed a fabulous dinner at Waffle House and then hot chocolate and present opening at home.  Gracie loved the kitchen that Blake built her so much that she refused to help make cookies for Santa.  
She did not mind eating the cookies though....  Santa was lucky that Gracie left him any at all.  

December 25- There is nothing like spending Christmas morning with a 3 year old.  The wonder and excitement in her eyes was the greatest gift of all.  She loves to watch others open presents and to share in the joy of giving.  I love this angel.  
The Gills and Hamils came up and had Christmas lunch with us, and of course, showered Gracie with even more love and gifts.  Even Baby Levi got a present this year!  

God blessed us richly this Christmas.  We thank him for the special moments we had and the memories we made.  Happy Birthday Jesus!  Thank you for allowing us to celebrate the greatest gift of all.