For 65 months of wedded bliss with the absolute love of my life.
For celebrating a first Thanksgiving with the perfect baby boy I prayed about for many years.
For family and friends who love me so well in every way and in every season.
For turkey…for puppies…for crisp weather and Kodak moments.
In short, for blessings, large and small, that reveal the heart of our loving God.

As I basked in the details of this beautiful day, I couldn’t help but be consumed by the fact that I almost missed it.

With that in mind, I will not let it end without raising my glass and saying thank you once again to all of my heroes and angels at Winnie Palmer, without whom I would not be here to celebrate.

Words fall woefully short in expressing just how thankful I am this year. The experiences of 2013 have provided a perspective that prohibits me from taking any moment for granted and my heart is overflowing with gratitude. Today and everyday, I thank God for the gift of every moment…and for blessing me with far more than I deserve.

So. Incredibly. Thankful.


First Halloween

For William’s first Halloween, we hit the road for SSI.  As it often happens, Halloween coincided with the annual FL-GA weekend, so William got to experience all of it in one fell swoop!  We arrived on the island just in time for us to put him in his bear costume and head down to the Village.  Since it is primarily a vacation town, there weren’t many Halloween festivities to speak of.  As we strolled along, we realized that this holiday would hold a significance for an unexpected reason…it marked the first time that William saw the ocean!!  I say this with a slight cringe, even though it was a wonderful experience.  It just strikes me as funny that at nearly 8 months old, our Florida-born son had to travel to Georgia to see the ocean for the first time.  Oops!

He was immediately entranced by the wind and the waves.  He didn’t want to take his eyes off the grand expanse of water.  Gilbert and I are both such huge fans of the ocean that it came as no surprise–he has seafaring genes on both sides!  It was such a special time for us as a family.  We absolutely adored watching him take it all in.  We walked up and down the path along the coastline and let him soak it up.  The fact that he was in a bear costume just adds to this memory.  How many kids can say that the first time they went to the beach they were dressed like a bear?  Random, but totally fun.  :0)



So we took the long-awaited family trip to the pumpkin patch!!  William was decked out in his fall gear and we were beyond excited.  There is an adorable patch down the street from our house and we were so looking forward to sharing it with him.  Unfortunately, it was about a million degrees, even though we arrived after 5 so the experience was much less “fall like” than I had hoped.  William was not a fan of the heat, but was a definite trooper through my seemingly endless desire for photos…86 to be exact.  :0)  He seemed to be absolutely fascinated by all of the pumpkins–loved looking at them up close.  We ended up purchasing 15 pumpkins in all, including a precious little pumpkin for our little pumpkin!

This gave such a taste of the excitement that is to come with holidays.  What fun it will be to share all of the different traditions and festivities with him!!!


An Unexpected Reunion

Today I had the awesome privilege of reuniting with an old friend.

As I know many of you can relate, having a new baby makes it extremely difficult to maintain relationships.  Shortly after becoming a mama, things move into overdrive with days and weeks blurring into a deliciously abstract rendering of your former life.   Before you know it, it’s been months since you truly connected, sometimes even with those you treasure most.

Today out of nowhere,  I found myself with unexpected time before me.  I wasn’t sure exactly how long I had to enjoy, so I knew I needed to make every minute count.  Many possibilities of what to do flooded my mind, but ultimately I decided to invest in a relationship that has gone by the wayside since William arrived on the scene.   Before he was born, this friend and I used to get together at least a few times a week.  Toward the end of my pregnancy, we were having dates daily and I absolutely treasured those times.  I always emerged from our time together feeling renewed, refreshed, and with an overall improved outlook on life.  The more I thought about this friend’s impact on my life, the more I became convinced that we had to reconnect.  I may have only had 10 or 15 minutes to spare, but whatever I had would be worth it.

Once the decision was made, I couldn’t wait to see her.  I became almost giddy in anticipation, but knew I had to stay calm, lest I ruin the short amount of time we had together.  Without hesitation, I hurried to the couch, snuggled down deep into the cushions and ushered in my old friend…the afternoon nap.  Oh sweet mercy.  Initially my body and mind were in stunned disbelief.  It had been so long since I attempted a nap that I was clearly out of practice.  “Really?  Really???” my tired eyes fluttered.  “This can’t be happening,” my brain buzzed.  Oh but it was…it WAS.  Football was on TV, the Sunday sun was streaming through the windows, and before I knew it, my old friend had wrapped her arms around me and carried me off to dreamland.  Absolute bliss.

I wish I could adequately capture the magic of this incredible and long-awaited reunion.  I am quite convinced that I slept the entire time with a goofy smile on my face.  There were no dreams, no alarming wake ups, just perfect contented rest.  I savored every scrumptious minute we had together and just like I remembered, when I awoke I found myself renewed, refreshed, and ready to take on the world.  What a difference a nap makes.  Thanks old friend…hope to see you again soon.

And so it begins.

The pressure to be profound on an initial blog posting is quite intense.   I have literally typed and deleted 10 different versions of that first sentence.  Yes, you read that correctly–the first sentence…all 13 words of it…the one that said, basically nothing.  “That’s edited?” Yes.  Let me just say, that I am the mother of a busy 7 month old baby boy and if I waited for the “perfect” words to start this blog, it would never get off the ground.  So with that in mind, let me just say…welcome.  ;0)