Sunday, April 29, 2007

Take Heed

This is what happens when:
1. you allow your at-times-rather-mischievous mother to feed you chocolate tofu pudding
2. you are comparatively helpless, with your hands full of Katelyn Grace
3. and you have two younger sisters who dive for the camera as soon as they see that their older sister's dignity has been significantly - but, thankfully, only temporarily - damaged
... although, since I'm posting the pictures, I'm not quite sure how "temporary" the damage is.

Gross, I know. It took some serious persuading and frequent reminders to get me to put this up here. I know I'll regret it tomorrow.

"I can't believe you're taking pictures of this."

"Is it gone?"

"Here. Have a napkin."
Note: That is Shannon's hand, and my face is on the other side of the napkin.

By the by, we do not condone the consumption of chocolate tofu pudding. Our trying this at Whole Foods was merely an experiment.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Missing Katelyn Grace

I've had a terrible wave of Missing-Katelyn-Grace-ness come over me the last few days. To think that she's all the way out in San Diego just smiling all of her adorable first smiles, and I'm not there to see it. It's almost enough to make me want to FedEx myself out there.

In honor of Katelyn Grace's two-month-three-week-and-one-day birthday, I decided to put up some of my favorite pictures of her, taken in the last two days she was at home. (Any excuse to put up pictures of the little princess will do!)

And so begins the delicate process of cutting a baby's fingernails.

But Katelyn Grace is completely relaxed and contented, as long as her mommy is holding her!

Katelyn Grace loves lying on my pillow. Sometimes, while I'm working on the computer, she'll just lie there, looking around at all of the bright colors, for half an hour. The night before she left, she and I had a little photo-shoot....

vv In her cute little carseat, ready for the trip to Atlanta! vv

My two all-time favorites:

So precious! We miss you, our darling little sister! Please come home to us soon!

Monday, April 23, 2007

A Recommendation

Please read the first comment to "Heartbreak and Blessing." Again, you will be blessed. Thank you, Michelle!

Friday, April 20, 2007

Our Thanks Goes to Dad!!!

We are so thankful to Dad for everything he does to enable Mom to homeschool all of us. I know it's not always easy. For the past few days, the four of us (me, Leslie, Austin, and Shannon) have been racking our brains to think of what we could do for Dad.

Yesterday, Dad received a mysterious phone call from me, in which I asked if he wouldn't mind giving us his Friday evening from 6:30 on. The answer was yes. His questions about what, where, and why, were met with ambiguity and vagueness. No, he needn't worry about getting dinner beforehand. No, we weren't going out to Grandma and Pop's. Well, he'll just have to wait and see.

Tonight, we all donned our "church clothes," (as they are termed here in the South) and headed to the downtown waterside for a nice walk and talk. Then, it was over to California Dreaming, one of Dad's favorite restaurants, where we treated him (and ourselves!) to a dinner of babyback ribs, delicious salads, and wonderful potato soup. (By the by, not everyone ordered all of that!)

We love you, Dad! You are appreciated so much! Thanks for your commitment to your family and your desire to stand up for what is right no matter what the cost. Thank you for reading Scripture to us in the evenings after dinner. Thanks for all of the interest you take in our music and for the wonderful encouragement you give to us each and every day. Thank you for your hilarious, entertaining sense of humor. You have the quickest wit of anyone we've ever known! Thanks for instructing us in such a wide variety of subjects, from how to shoot a .45, to how the judicial system works, to what kind of life Paul the Apostle led, to how to cook steaks to perfection, to the history of the Watergate incident. You're wonderful!

Proverbs 4:1 - Hear, ye children, the instruction of a father, and attend to know understanding.

Thanks, Dad, for everything! We love you!

The South....

... where people think little of alligators sunning themselves within feet of bike paths.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Heartbreak and Blessing

The following was originally posted on my blog, More Precious Than Rubies.

* * * * *
Jessica Weatherford lies small and helpless on the opertating table, staring at a blue surgical sheet hanging inches from her face.

It blocks her view of the Caesarean operation on the other side, as a doctor delicately reaches for her baby.

A baby Jessica's been waiting for.

A baby she prays will live long enough to hold in her arms.

So begins one of the most heartbreaking stories I have ever read. This is a story of a young couple who experienced the unthinkable: the joy of finding out they were soon to be the proud parents of a baby boy, and then the sorrow of discovering that their first son would never live to see the outside of a hospital. You see, a severe disability, Trisomy 13, made it certain that little Zeke would not survive more than a few minutes - if that long - outside of his mother's womb.

But this is also the story of God's faithfulness and a mother's love. While most parents would have chosen to abort their child, Dave and Jessica Weatherford knew that God had a plan for their son's life, however short He saw fit to make it.

Psalm 139:13 - For thou hast possessed my reins: thou hast covered me in my mother's womb.

I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvellous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well.

As I read of this couple's struggles, their hopes, plans, and faith, tears streamed down my face. Theirs is a heartwrenching story. But I received a tremendous blessing from reading of God's faithfulness through every trial.

Their story gives a whole new meaning to Psalm 139. God has a plan for every life, even that of a severely disabled baby who lives for only 35 minutes outside of his mother's womb.

You will cry as you read of Jessica taking her baby in her arms, whispering, "Hi. This is Mommy. I love you."

But I can assure you that you will be blessed as I have been.

Part 1: Zeke's Gift - Love to Last a Lifetime

Part 2: Zeke's Gift - "Hi. This is Mommy"

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Missing Katelyn Grace

We miss our precious little baby!

Friday, April 13, 2007


Our dog likes leftover mustard greens.

Monday, April 9, 2007

The Treatments and Therapies Begin!

Rapid changes continue to occur around here, and the busy-ness has not let up in the least!

Leslie, Mom, Shannon, and I are going to Atlanta on Wednesday for a therapy appointment for Katelyn Grace. From there, on Thursday morning, Mom is flying out to San Diego. She will be gone a whole month, living with my aunt Sharon, getting periodic treatments done for Katelyn Grace. This treatment is called neurocranial restructuring. After doing countless hours of research, Mom is confident that this treatment is one of the best options- if not the best option - for Katelyn Grace.

I'm not sure that I could give an accurate description of the treatment, complete with all of the scientific lingo, but I'll try to give you a very broad idea of it ... a very broad idea, mind you. Basically, it goes to the root of the problem - the brain - instead of treating merely the symptoms of slower brain development.

We are going to miss Mom so much. And to think that we have to miss a whole month of Katelyn Grace's babyhood! When she comes back she will be three-and-a-half months old. More than likely, we will miss her first smile.

Katelyn Grace is sleeping, at most, about 6 hours a night. She tends to be very restless when she is awake, and sometimes has trouble sleeping during the day. We know that she has some stomach problems which make her struggle and tense up. Mom thinks that she may have a touch of colic. Mom drinking some kefir each day seems to be helping, though!

Please be in prayer concerning Mom's trip. Our prayer is that Katelyn Grace would be a good little traveler on her 7-hour flight, and that Mom's stay in San Diego would be helpful and productive.

Katelyn Grace has each of us wrapped around her little finger, and we are doing our best not to spoil her rotten. She is so much fun to hug and cuddle and kiss and sing to. God sent us such a blessing in the form of our little Katelyn Grace. We thank Him for sending us this little bundle of joy, and pray that our family would be worthy of the care that He has placed in our hands, to be handled - thankfully - with His help.

Sometimes I just stand looking at Katelyn Grace, watching her eyes wander over the room and her mouth form into the cutest little "O" shape. She's so helpless, so little. I believe I have gotten a tiny glimpse of what a mother's love must be like. And how much greater is God's love for us?

This little baby is so adorable, innocent, sweet, precious. Oh how could anyone ever not want a little blessing like this of their very own?

* * * * *

Sometime this coming weekend, I hope to post pictures of a very special meeting between Katelyn Grace and another precious baby. Coming up, there should also be some very interesting pictures of an Easter egg coloring party that Leslie, Shannon, Grandma and I had on Sunday afternoon. Fun times!