Tuesday, January 4, 2011

A year of blessings

At our church, the first Sunday night in December is our "testimony tree" service.

Each person who wants to share can get up, give a testimony about what the year has been for them or what God has done in their life, and then place an ornament on the tree that represented their year.

My ornament this year was a band-aid.

I didn't actually place a band-aid ornament on the tree, but had I been able to find one, I would have.

2010 was a real year of healing for me. With Lola's birth came great healing, and the Lord truly helped me conquer several fears I had throughout and even after pregnancy and her delivery. There were many other difficult circumstances this year for me as well, but each step that seemed to go wrong, God was right there to show me that, no matter how troubling the waters were that I might be wading through, He was going to use my circumstances in a way to show me that He truly is the Ultimate Healer.

2010 was a great year, full of many blessings.

In January, I was 40 weeks pregnant, and looked like this....

....and, just two days later, we welcomed sweet Lola into our family!

A mere week later, I shared my 31st birthday with this special boy--his third!!

In February, being the mom of three small boys and a newborn gave me the opportunity to have a few small panic attacks over things like dirty fingers (or worse, tongues!!) getting into Lola's little mouth.

Lola showed us that she was a really great sleeper....
(and a super CUTE one, at that!!)

In March, we closed a chapter on Ethan's hearing loss and speech issues.  After almost a year of intensive speech therapy, it was GREAT to hear him talk in full sentences and learn to memorize verses like his brothers did at his age!

 Shane finished the boys' bedroom remodel--whew! What a project!

The boys helped, of course, by painting their closet for us!
In their undies, as usual.

In April, Lola turned three months old, and we celebrated our first Easter together as a family of six!

I'm so blessed to have four amazing children and a great mother of my own.
What a wonderful gift from God!

I went to my first Kindergarten Mother's Day Tea with Colin at his school,

watched him graduate from K-5,

It was a pretty special day.

I also started getting into couponing--and by June, I was pretty good at it!!

We let the boys get their much desired mohawks....

And celebrated Father's Day with the most amazing man I know!!

July brought lots and lots of T-ball games! It was a great lesson in beginning the sports/church/activities/family/balance struggle we all face in life, but a great family activity for all of us!

August was a very full and exciting month for us.  Our garden was mass producing, and I was in the kitchen most days, baking zucchini bread, preserving peachesmaking spaghetti sauce, and canning up a storm!

Lola was getting big enough to 'play' with the boys....

We enjoyed a much-too-quick visit from my Dad, stepmom, and sister...

...and we had the opportunity to take a trip to Missouri to visit some of Shane's family down there.  
 What a wonderful month!

In September, we celebrated Shane's birthday on Labor Day.  The day was going great, until we ended up in the emergency room with a pretty seriously injured Ethan! Sweet little guy was a trooper....

...but ended up with a broken leg and a hip-to-toe cast. Eeeek!

and the big boys started our favorite sport--soccer!!

October was a big month!

 We were told poor Ethan needed another new cast (his third!),
and that it would need to be on for four more weeks.

I got my *amazing* annual tree pictures, including the very first one of miss Lola!

And, we spent lots and lots of time as a family at the soccer fields!

At the tail end of the month, Ethan finally got his cast off and took
a luxurious, much missed, very coveted and very looooong BATH!

 We celebrated Colin's seventh birthday with lots of Bears gear,

we celebrated a Storm soccer championship,

and had a fun time trick or treating for Halloween!

Whew! That month was a crazy one!

 It was a great time of reflection for the gifts of my four little blessings, my husband,
my family, and so many other things that the Father has blessed me with!

In December, Lola started making this face,

we visited with Mrs. Clause at the library,

and had a wonderful first Christmas together (despite being sick!)

I am so grateful to God for the wonderful year He gave us, the healing He provided me, and I am greatly looking forward to what 2011 will bring our family!


Jenny said...

Oh I just adore your family. I look at your blog and seriously wish you lived closer. I think we would get along great and our kids would LOVE hanging out! How fun would that be!!!! I pray 2011 is a wonderful year, full of lots of laughter, love, and more sweet moments!

Amanda Hoyt said...

Wow, Dev. A.M.A.Z.I.N.G. post!
You are truly gifted at sharing your family with us in a way that we feel that we know you and all of your family members very well. Love it! You are a wonderful friend to me and I can't wait to see what 2011 will bring for us - praying that it will be even better than 2010 :) (and who could top that!?!?) Love

Homegrown Tribe said...

What an awesome year! love seeing it all put together like that. I'm only into March on mine. {grin}

you have such an adorable family and man those kids are getting big!


Nancy said...

I'm posting because I lost your email when my hard drive died. :( And because I like to read posts on our blog, too! :)

I somehow missed that you went through an entire year of speech therapy/eating issues with Ethan. How in the world I missed it, I don't know. Our Caleb went through the exact same thing. We realized the oral aversion first and got him into therapy for eating around 8 months. Literally he would throw up with anything that wasn't finely pureed...just like E Ry. Plus, he had a dozen or so food allergies, so we were very limited in what we could feed him.

Then around his second birthday we noticed that he wasn't talking more than "mama" and a version of "dada." It really became apparent that his speech was behind when Rebekah began saying words more clearly than Caleb. Rebekah's speech therapist gave us some things to work on with Caleb, and his speech has become unbelievably better! He will be 3 in April and is talking in whole paragraphs. We will have another speech evaluation next month to take another look at some particular sounds that still aren't coming out right, but we are so thankful that he is doing so well.

I agree with you one hundred percent. All of the doctor training in the world cannot replace a mommy's instinct! So, so glad that Ethan has graduated and is doing so well. Your children are all so precious!


Stephanie said...

Great recap...I was thinking of you and Lola Claire's bday just the other day...
And that face Lola started making in Dec. is one that Micah has started making this week. It is SOOOO funny - but so far I can't get it on camera.

Kathy said...

A million and one reasons why I love this post. Love. No words. Just love.

Love to you and your family.

Rambling Rachel said...

There are seasons for healing and what a wonderful walk through of your year! I grew up in a family with four kids and it was a great experience. I'm greatful for how all of my siblings enriched my life and how they continue to add so much beauty to my life.

May you have grace today and going forward.