Monday, March 26, 2012

Party Fun.

A mid-birthday party moment, where one of the kids encouraged all the others to shake their booties. Hilarity and fun for all participants and observers ensued.
Eli's 5th Birthday
Priceless. I love how the only dear one in focus is the sweet lady not participating in their silliness.

Also, he wanted an Army-Transformer birthday.  Who knew there was actually such a hybrid.
Eli's 5th Birthday
That tank turns into a robot. Thank you Publix.

The party was relaxed fun.  Fun at Gammy's house, just as he had asked for.  Just a few close friends and family to celebrate our exuberant little boy marching into 5. Grandma Jayne and Great-Grandma and Grandpa Hermie even made the the long trip back from Georgia (and then back again), to make sure this boy knew just how spectacular his is.

Linking up as part of Beth's You Capture, FUN, because what's more fun than a party?

Friday, March 23, 2012

Marching Into Big-Kid Land.

Five makes him such a big kid. Gone is my little baby, and here sits a big boy with the personality to spare.  I miss my little chubby blond boy who wanted nothing more than mommy to hold him, but oh how I love spending my days with this wonderful child.

Sidewalk Chalk

He has an amazing artist touch, but only if it is his idea.

Art Time

How handsome can one kid be?  I personally believe he should be the new advertising model for Auburn University.

Auburn 11.19.2011

This was the year of wearing the batman costume, everywhere. I mean I know this picture is from Halloween, but really, he wore it almost everyday for six months.

Halloween 2011

He is our water child, with no fear of the water.  Even when the temperature is frigidly uncomfortable for everyone else.

Disneyland Day 1

This is the year he fell in love with the Pacific Ocean when his brothers weren't so sure.

Beach Day 9.18.2011

He would stay at the shore all day, every day, if only it were possible.

Half Moon Bay

This was year of the broken arm, twice. Neither time did it slow him down a bit.

Santa Cruz 8.26.2011

Kind, loving, giving, handsome, rough, loud, wild, smart, adventurous, fun, happy, emotional, expressive, and a pure JOY to watch grow and become the amazing person God intends him to be.

Backyard 4.13.2011

His daddy, when asked to describe him in one word said, "Lionhearted." Perfect. Because that is exactly who he is.
Monterey Bay, CA

And because I'm his momma, you know I have to look back.  I mean, what a beautiful baby. Oh, how the time has flown.

A great Eli smile


On turning 4.  And 3.  And 2And 1. And meeting this precious boy.

Friday, March 9, 2012

Community, Encouragement, Accomplishment

Seaside Half Marathon

Six months ago my dear friend Kristine called and encouraged me to sign up for the Seaside Half Marathon.  I looked down at my body that was just about as out of shape as I have ever been.  I had not participated in any consistent exercise since prior to Colin's pregnancy.  I had also spent 5 months in California eating my feelings.

This seemed like just about the craziest thing I could agree to do, but then the encouragement from other lovely ladies came in and I signed up.  I know it was not by my wise judgement, but by the Lord's leading that I agreed.

A neighbor and a mostly online friend, Hannah, tweeted not too long later about recommendations for a spring half marathon for herself.  I immediately suggested she join us on this adventure. She agreed and so began a three days a week running regimen.  Doing this with a partner was irreplaceable and also a rather intense way to foster a friendship.  If nothing else would have been gained, this friendship was worth it.

Seaside Half Marathon

There were frequent group emails, music sharing and run meetups planned.  It is amazing what community can do.  Being a part of this took me from an inactive eater to a runner with confidence.  I'm a runner.

The night before the race in my {extensive-I-can't-sleep} prayer time. I really felt the Lord speaking to my heart, "If this race is for your glory, don't do it. Give it up. If this race is for Me and my Glory, I will give you everything you need to complete it."

The morning of the race arrived early. We had plenty of time to park, eat and and overreact about how cold it was in the pre-dawn moments.

Kristine prayed over us. The perfect scripture intended for us all, "Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, says the Lord Almighty!" (Zechariah 4:6)

And off we went in confidence into the crowd waiting for the start.  I never heard the gun. I felt the crowd tighten and suddenly we were off.

Off into the beautiful, clear Florida sunshine.

Normally I hate the first 2 miles of any run, no matter the distance.  But, with the excitement of race day morning that feeling never showed up.

However, somewhere in mile 2, Hannah's foot started really hurting.  She had a previous problem that had barely bothered her in all our training, but here on race day she had to fight through the pain for 11 miles.  I'm so proud of her determination. We stayed together.  This whole thing was a team effort and race day was going to be no different.

The course was an out and back course.  That turned out to be really fun.  There were so many of us in our group that there was always someone to be looking for on the other side.

The entire thing felt like a celebration. Now, I'm not saying that about mile 9 my legs weren't screaming at me to stop.  But, the feeling passed suprisingly quickly.  The extent to which is enjoyed it is that as we sailed into the 12th mile I almost wanted the race to be another mile longer so all of this wouldn't be over.

Finish Line Elation
Seaside Half Marathon

It was so wonderful to do this, but only more wonderful to accomplish it with this group of women.

Also, if you are a runner of races, put this one on your list! A beach vacation, great community support, a fast flat course and Vera Bradley sponsors the race so the swag is unbeatable.

**More stories to come on the amazingness of the whole weekend away.**