A Birthday Boy

I was made for loving you
Even though we may be hopeless hearts just passing through
Every bone screaming I don’t know what we should do
All I know is, darling, I was made for loving you

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You happen to be the “fun” uncle

You’re a passionate man – and your passion for the littles melts my heart.

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Your love for our littles who went well before us – stops my beating heart. You’re the best daddy, and I can’t imagine doing this whole family thing with anyone else.

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You happen to be my favorite, and I love celebrating my favorite people.

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You are strong, you are a leader, you are the half that makes me whole. You are gifted and talented. You work hard and you play harder. The best part of me is you. Your silliness is contagious, your laugh never fails to make me smile, your passion is inspiring, and the way you love people – is an example I hope to follow for the rest of my days.

I was made for loving you
Even though we may be hopeless hearts just passing through
Every bone screaming I don’t know what we should do
All I know is, darling, I was made for loving you

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You’re my favorite

Happy Birthday My Love, my prayer is that with each passing day you continue to grow into the man God has destined you to be. That your life be filled with more joy than you can handle and more blessing than you know what to do with. I pray that your heart stays soft so that you keep being molded and shaped into an amazing husband and an amazing father. That your dreams become tangible and your cup be filled to overflowing. You have been made with a special gift, a purpose, and my greatest joy is watching you discover and walk into what God has for you.

I love you with all my heart! Praising Jesus for You!!!

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Marching, Doula’s, and a name for Squishy

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I will start with this. Story of my life. I usually end up finding a few in random closets. My cat, Syd, loves these things. So I have many a causality per week.
Next, I’m going to toot my own horn for a minute…. March of Dimes…. Can I just say – WOW!
My original goal was $250 to raise. I met that. So, I set a new goal – $500. I’ve met that. With people’s generous donations my total fundraising stands at $510. So, like I have before.. I set a new goal. This one is lofty. This one is a stretch. But I KNOW that if there are more generous people out there I can meet this goal. Dollar by dollar.
New Goal – $1000.00
So, if you feel compelled, please, please, please donate. This goes to a wonderful cause. I have a HUGE goal. I’d love to meet this goal. It’s a big one. But, the cause is so worth it. Plus, it’s one that I am super passionate about. It’s important to me that all mothers and babies get a healthy start to pregnancy and life. I’m always going to advocate for full term babies!
So, if you feel led, here’s my personal page: http://www.marchforbabies.org/babybrooks
This week is boring, basically because not much has changed, really. So, feel free to skip it. I just feel like I should write down what 23 weeks looks like so that someday I can look back and not ask, what happened to week 23….
Next appointment: End of April (25ish weeks) – However I will add that my first Doula appointment was on Tuesday. I’m stoked. We nailed down a decent birth plan. One for her and one to give to the hospital staff. I probably sound a little nuts, but I am soo excited to be attempting a natural, un-medicated birth. I’m excited to experience what my body is capable of. I’m really excited to feel and watch my body do something that I have always assumed it didn’t know how to do (I’m learning to trust!! GASP). I’m really excited to nurse. I’m mostly excited that I have a really great support system in place to help me achieve all this. Also, she suggested I read a few books, this is my first, so far I love it!
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Ps. If you are in the Spokane area, I highly recommend her. Sarah is quite possibly the sweetest and she LOVES what she does.
Exercise: Still walking the pup most days after work. Still participating in my once a week yoga at work. Someday when we finally replace our DVD player (which is currently broken) I will pop in the yoga DVD I ordered forever ago.
Maternity clothes: Yes and no still. Some shirts are, some shirts aren’t. Most of my skirts and pants are maternity though. That likely won’t change anytime soon 🙂
Sleep:  Sometimes I win, sometimes I lose. But, most days I lose.
Food cravings:  I will say my craving for Thai food has exceeded the desire for a Bonzai Burger. Although both always sound good.
Symptoms: I can’t. I just can’t even start…. I will say: Purpose. I’m thankful there is a purpose. (side note: who decided that it was a good idea to put ribs where you’re supposed to grow a baby??? It’s not my favorite idea at the moment)
Baby’s Size/Milestones: Little C is still transparent, and a bit red because of the developing veins and arteries under skin, but this won’t last long, as Little C is about to pack on the fatty chub that gives skin a more person-like look. Little C’s face is fully formed, and is simply waiting on the fat to fill out. Little C is starting to kick like crazy, usually in response to noises hears from the outside world. Little C is also busy constructing the blood vessels in his lungs that will allow him to breathe the air on his own once he is born. Little C is a bit over a foot tall, the size of a bunch of grapes, and he weighs probably more than average, because lets face it, at 21 weeks he was a fatty already.
Movement:  It’s glorious. Seriously the best thing in the world. Little dude has found my cervix, bladder, and also my ribs as practice for his soccer skills.
What I miss:  I miss a lot, but mostly my memory. I miss being able to control my emotions a little better. Seriously. It’s like a flame that moves to a forest fire in a matter of seconds sometimes, and then before I can even realize what’s happening I’m in a pile of tears that snowball into sobs. It’s the weirdest thing ever. I do not like it.
What I’m loving:  Unrelated: New Furniture. LOVE IT. I feel like I have a grown up living-room! Growing a baby, how amazing my hair feels and looks. I’m loving how active this dude is. His little feisty personality kills me. Loving my craving for Thai. I’m loving his name……….
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What I’m looking forward to:   I’m SOO looking forward to painting/decorating Little Mr’s room, which I say every week. But we bought paint last weekend. Now we just need to move a few things around to make room to paint. I’m looking forward to Maternity pics and new hair cut and color in May! Looking forward to so so much. A life full of baseballs, tackles, snuggle sessions, and raising a man who loves Jesus. VIABILITY (1 more week)!!!!!!!! Baby Showers!!!!!!! I feel so spoiled and blessed.
Baby Purchases:  Notta thing bought this last week (well, except paint – does that count? Oh, and Momma got some new clothes…. Sorry bubs, momma took the prize this week). I just have been working on a list of things we need still and things to register for. I feel weird about registries, I feel weird about letting people buy us gifts. We paid to get here, we knew the expenses of a babe were coming…. But I will have an open mind and allow blessings to come, if they come. I never expect gifts, though. Ever. I’m always humbled and blown away by people’s generosity.
Best moment this week:  On Easter, we started telling people his name, that was pretty awesome. This is completely unrelated, but it’s my besties birthday! This last weekend her and I had a girls date and got appetizers and pedicures. It was amazing! I have sooo much love for her, she doesn’t even know how much of a blessing she is.
Happy Birthday Sweet friend!!
Hello 23 weeks! I can’t believe you’re here. I can’t believe that I’ve been gifted this amazing opportunity. I hope that as things get more and more uncomfortable that I never once take this experience for granted. That I remind thankful and humbled at Gods amazing grace.
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The Love I Know

 

He painted ‘I love you’ on the bridge
Then watched them burn
She bet all she had upon the love
Now she’s holding her cards and lost her turn

Two hearts in search of wholeness
Both willing to risk it all
Could true love have fled so easily
Leaving both broken from the fall

Not the love I know
It knows no boundaries
Keeps no record of wrongs
That’s the love I know
It takes the good with the bad
And it fights to stay strong
That’s the love I know
This love always finds a way to carry on
That’s the love I know

He sits all alone and stares into an empty sky
She goes through all her mixed emotions
Trying to find a reason why

Was their pride too big to swallow
Was their hurt too deep to heal
Could they find some understanding
Find forgiveness that’s real

That’s the love I know
It speaks in kindness
It seeks only what’s true
That’s the love I know
A love without condition it looks to renew
That’s the love in know
It knows that when hope seems gone
Hope will come through
That’s the love I know

The love I know comes from a holy God to man
Isn’t it time that you received it
Are you starting to understand
The love I know

That’s the love I know
It speaks in kindness it seeks only what’s true
That’s the love I know
A love without condition it looks to renew
That’s the love I know
It knows that when hope seems gone hope will come through
That’s the love I know
That’s the love I know

So, some people may or may not like the direction I’m taking recently with my blog. But each week my blog will always start with a song that has been impactful over the course of the week. Most of which happen to be within the Christian Music genre. Take it, or leave, or skim right past. But I these are the little things I don’t want to forget.

Now, most of this song is focused on romantic relationships that have been damaged. However, it’s the chorus that really got me. I feel like lately there has been such a HUGE increase in social media wars. Shaming women for their decisions about breastfeeding or not, vaccinating or not, cloth diapers or disposable, home births, water births, fully medicated births. Not to mention the hottest debate right now is 50 Shades of Grey. I mean, seriously, type the number 50 into your Google search and I can almost guarantee that 50 Shades of Grey will be the first option to pick. I refuse to pipe into these debates because to me it’s not a debatable subject. I know what I believe and I know what God has asked of me and my family.

What’s most disappointing is how some of the Christian community has forgotten Love in this process. It seem like everyone is using books about fictional “romance” to be the standard of Love.  After talking with my husband about this topic last night and reflecting back on the debates that flood my Facebook, I realized that what’s missing in almost everyone’s debate is: Love.

Love isn’t kinky sex written in novels or displayed on social media or best seller box office hits.

Love isn’t purposefully using hurtful, unkind words to shame someone for the choices they’ve made out of ignorance, blindness, or selfishness.

Love isn’t passing judgment on a mother who has made a choice because she believes it’s the right choice for her family (example: vaccinations, water/home birth, co-sleeping, epidurals, natural birth).

Love has a standard.

And honestly I feel like Love has been lost in all of these debates and rants about who is right and who is wrong. Why all the shame? Why all the fighting? Yes, as a believer we have an obligation to walk beside our brothers and sisters and call forward the issues that do NOT line up in God’s Word. BUT, there is a productive way of doing so, and a not so productive way of doing so. Frankly, some choices are not even our business to argue or input opinions on unless it is completely harmful to their spiritual health.

“The love I know comes from a holy God to man
Isn’t it time that you received it
Are you starting to understand
The love I know

That’s the love I know
It speaks in kindness it seeks only what’s true
That’s the love I know
A love without condition it looks to renew
That’s the love I know
It knows that when hope seems gone hope will come through
That’s the love I know
That’s the love I know”

How is this defined? Look to the author of Love. How do my words and reactions display His love? Am I speaking in kindness and seeking truth? I mean, Jesus set a perfect example of Love and how we’re to carry it out. How are so many people forgetting this? Many of my Christian friends have engaged in back and forth banter, claiming that they’re standing up for what’s right and what God has asked of them, but I don’t see much kindness in many of their words. Like I said earlier, I’m not seeing Jesus like love, trust me – I am just as guilty sometimes. So this song, it’s been a good reminder to me of what my Love is to look like. Whether that’s within the intimacy of my own marriage or out in public while surrounded by much debate.

I have a lot of my own opinions and beliefs about all said topics, but it would completely irrelevant to share that. I am however, not tolerant of sin, and not afraid to point back to the bible about His standards that He has made clear for us. There are many choices I believe are the wrong choice and many that I think are the right choice (and there are certainly some topics that don’t have a right or wrong choice) but it doesn’t mean I’m going to love any differently.

On that note:

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 So my littlest favorite turned 1-year-old this last week. I don’t know where time goes, but it certainly goes way too fast. This chunk of a lady is walking, and growling (um, the cute growls), smiles, and eats snacks like she loves even the lamest of foods. She holds a very special place in my heart (ok, all my favorites do..). I can’t imagine my life without her.

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At her birthday party my niece became acquainted with a new baby. This babe is a teeny tiny 3/4 month old who is just sooo sweet. My niece clearly loves babies and is soooo tender and sweet when loving on them. She made sure to inspect every finger and every toe. She gently brushed her hand on her cheek and kissed her sweet little forehead. I have never seen such tenderness from a crazy 10-year-old. Heart.Melted.

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I have some pretty amazing friends. Like, ok, they are so amazing that I absolutely consider them my family. No questions asked. And then there is this man in my life, who happens to be my bestest friend in the whole world. So I found a little something that one, fits my minion theme and two, holds true for all my friends.

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Ok, biggest apologies for the lengthy post, so if you’re still reading here is this weeks latest on our Little Squishy.
Next appointment: End of February (17 weeks) – This will include an ultrasound.
Weight Gain/Loss: I am still only up 5 pounds max *I think*. Like I said last week, this is an odd update. but I’ll know more come my next appointment.
Exercise: Bought myself a yoga DVD. Now I can do more yoga than I was before. I’ve been terrible at walking. But I have been doing planks about 2-3x a week, that counts right?
Maternity clothes: About the same – All jeans and pants have been switched. My leggings are starting to feel snug. But they’ll do until spring – bring on the maxi skirt!!!
Sleep: Meh, sometimes good, sometimes bad. I’ll take whatever I get and I’ve learned this is a new normal, and I’m ok with that.
Food cravings:  I’ve got nothing on my list that I HAVE to have… I guess I love any and all fruit (can’t get enough of it) and I LOVE me come baby carrots and salads right now…. But I don’t CRAVE it.
Symptoms: Still some lingering nausea here and there. Forgetful, clumsy, dizzy (so bad), tired, and of course the usual.
Baby’s Size/Milestones: Baby is now the size of an avocado measuring just over 4 inches long and weighing just over 2.5 ounces. It’s wiggling around testing out its new range of motion in the arms and legs, sucking his/her thumb, and practicing swallowing. I find all these little tidbits simply amazing. Little one’s heart rate is still consistently in the high 150’s and low 160’s. Usually landing around 161bpm.
Movement:  *same* I’ve decided that I’m not going to listen to my doctor anymore about movement. I don’t care where the heck the placenta is or how it will change what I feel from the babe moving. At this point it’s said to be unlikely that I feel the baby – I happen to maybe disagree. Someone said to me a few weeks ago, ” Whether you’re right or wrong about feeling the baby move, it’s better to just go with it and believe that it’s baby. No one can REALLY tell you that it’s not, and no one can REALLY tell you that it is. So you may as well enjoy whatever you feel and believe that it’s your baby.” I loved that. I know that I am super sensitive to what my body does so sure, maybe it’s gas… Maybe it’s not. Maybe it’s digestion, maybe it’s not. But clearly new things are happening in this area and I’ve noticed. I choose to be excited and hope that just maybe it’s the start of something.
What I miss: Having the EXTRA energy to be a good housekeeper. Clear skin. Today is the first day I’ve really thought about wine and how it seems like it’s been a really long time since I’ve had a glass. I don’t miss it, but I guess today I would say it sounds nice.
What I’m loving:  Growing a baby, how amazing my hair feels. Also, how quickly my nails are growing. All the new quirks my body is doing. It seems like everyday I notice something new now.
What I’m looking forward to:  Feeling movements and knowing the gender…..I can’t wait to see babe at the end of the month….. and buying ALL THE BABY THINGS.
Baby Purchases: We did it. We purchased wipes and diapers. But, right now we are working on getting some house stuff done and ready for little one’s appearance first, then we’ll focus on actual baby items needed.
Best moment this week: Noticing a big change in the appearance of my stomach. Ok, well at least to me it looks like it’s changed quite a bit. Also sending out invitations to a….. Gender Reveal party….. EEEEEP.
Hello 15 weeks! Be kind to me, please:
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Birthday’s, Crafts, and New Hobbies

Wow, I can’t even believe that we are now a solid week into October (okay… okay, I am one day off). I feel like it was just yesterday I was day dreaming of sunshine and beach days. We certainly had plenty of sunshine (and still do) and it was amazing, but I can seriously count, on one hand, how many times I wore a swim suite…. no more than 3 times. YIKES. I wish we had done more, but I think I was covered in a dark cloud that made the super sunny days not shine so bright. Now, now it’s fall and I get to wear some cute clothes and snuggle up in my tall socks and boots. I love boots. If it could be fall all year around, I would be one fluffy happy girl!

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When the weather turns I tend to start wanting to bake and cook yummy fall meals, or decorate the table and cozy up for the winter. Seriously, I am in full on snuggle mode.

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Something else about fall makes me feel crafty. I’ve always been one who loves to create new things and scrapbook. Perhaps even make a Fall or Spring/Summer wreath. This time though, I’ve started making something new, something I’ve never tried. Infant/toddler headbands. You guys, I am addicted to making these things! I know I have so many friends and family members who are ready to pop, already popped, or getting close to popping, so they will make excellent gifts. I also make some in expectation that just maybe we’ll have our own little one someday to style up with little adornments.

(Ps. Yes, I will be starting to sell these, if interested 🙂 Haven’t worked those details out yet, but I’ll get there)

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This fall I have also found another new hobby that I intend to perfect. Ok, maybe not perfect, but I am determined to get this instrument learned and learned well. So far I have mastered been able to throw about 4 chords together and slowly play one song. This is a tool that I think will come in handy and hopefully push me a little closer to my life dream. I’m in love with learning something new, and something for myself. I feel like I am experiencing a whole new side of Me that I’ve never known before…. and I like it.

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October is also a month that I hold near and dear to my heart. This month most people know it by Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and that’s ok, I fully support that and recognize that it needs awareness. It’s also Down Syndrome Awareness Month. My niece has what’s called Translocation Down Syndrome. This girl, she is a fighter, she had open heart surgery at the tender age of 6 months old and has since gone through countless procedures and medical interventions. Yet, she still ALWAYS has a smile on her face. I believe we can learn a lot from children in general, but a child with special needs also has much to give and much to teach us. She is strong willed, affectionate, feisty, courageous, fearless, sensitive, and a true gift from the Lord. She has been an inspiration to me, and honestly on some of my lowest days, she is a huge reason why I keep pressing forward. October also happens to be her Birthday Month. YEAH!!! This little one will be 10! My words are insufficient to express the love, care, and concern I have for her. I can’t wait for the day that I am closer to her (in distance)! Miss you so much, Buggy.

Dearest Madison,

This TeeTee loves you so much. Those words actually don’t even come close to how much value you have. You, my love, are so so treasured. Not just by me, or your Momma, or even the Grammy, but by The King, who created and knit you together so perfectly. His divine plan for your life is clear. The amount of joy and laughter you have brought each of us is a true gift. Don’t let anyone, ever, look down on you for your differences. You, sweet one, are perfectly made and precious. You may be from tiny town, but your gifts and strengths and worth are far greater. I love watching you grow and flourish in all He’s created you to be.

Happy Birthday to my little Mermaid. To the one who stole my heart from the very first cry.

I love you to the moon and back,

TeeTee

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October also happens to be Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness month. For obvious reasons this one is a heart string for me. Not only have I experienced my own losses, but because of Gods request for me to blog my heart, I have walked with so many others through their loss(es). It’s a painful journey and one that I wouldn’t wish on anyone, but I am honored that I have been able to be a source of love and support during a difficult time. I’ve even watched some my blogger friends fight this battle and it’s ugly. I fully believe that there are ways to prevent pregnancy loss and infant loss. Consider donating to the March Of Dimes or Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep, or get involved in a local organization who is working on finding solutions. I am deeply saddened that I have had to experience this type of loss, but I’m proud of who it’s refined me into. I’ll never understand why, I may be lucky to know the reasons why two of the 3 failed, but I’ll never understand why these things have to happen or why the Lord allowed it. But I do know that He has been faithful to me and SO many other woman who have walk through Pregnancy and/or Infant Loss.

 

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