Wednesday, July 29, 2009

MckLinky! Weekly Blog Hop!

Favorite Kid Photo

This is hard to narrow down to one photo... I have sooo many that I love. This photo is definately one that tops the list. Daddy, and Nathaniel holding new baby brother, Brayden safe in their arms. This picture was taken in the hospital the day after Brayden was born.

MckLinky Blog Hop

Saturday, July 25, 2009


Yes, you read that right. We went swimming!
It was only a baby pool... but it was a big step.

Since last June when we lost Brayden we have not been in a pool... It wasen't 100% intentional, it had just not come up much. There were a few opportunities... but we were just not ready.
But this... was a big first step for me.

The kiddos have been going to a new childcare provider and she lives in a community that has a nice pool with a pretty big baby pool. It also has a big mushroom like fountain in the middle. Very fun. We both new there would be times when it would come up. Her boys are used to going and they would ask. Nathaniel also saw it and would want to go.

So we decided that it would be good for me to be with them and go the first time. This was probably more for me than the kids. But I knew I needed to do it.

To say the least, Nathaniel LOVED it. He swam and swam like a fish enjoying every moment. It was a little nerve wrecking for me.. especially at first.

But then it was ok.
suprisingly ok.

He was eager to show us that he was practicing putting his face (actually just mouth and nose) under water.. blowing to avoid getting water in. He did great, and was proud of himself.

He has been doing this awhile in the bathtub and asking to "go swimming for real in a pool". I guess this prepared me somehow for the pool more than I thought. The baby pool.. which is only a foot deep was just like a large bathtub (or so I told myself) I felt confident that he was ok and could do this.. just as he had may times in the tub.

I did it. It felt good. We had fun.

Here are some pictures from our day...

I am so thanful that we had this opportunity and I am thankful that Nathaniel did so well. No apprehensions or fear. Just pure fun (:

What an answer to prayer.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Wednesday's Walk ... Down Memory lane...

Fun Times with Daddy!

This blog carnival was started by Lynette Kraft at
Dancing Barefoot on Weathered Ground. This is a fun opportunity to document some of the things you don't want to forget and share those memorable times with others so we can enjoy them too. You can visit her site by clicking the picture above to share in her memories as well as others.

As I thought about what I wanted to write about I sat watching my husband interact with our children. Shreals of laughter and joy came from nathaniel as he laid in Daddy's lap being tickled! Elliana didn't want to be far from the action as she sat in daddy's arm dancing all around enjoying the craziness. I love these special moments...

Today's memory is actually not from a one time event. It was a ritual of sorts. This memory goes back to the many nights my husband spent on the floor...getting clobbered by boys! One of my favorite memories of Brayden is the times he spent playing with daddy. My husband Loves to get down on the floor and have tickling, wrestling times with the kids. I remember before we ever had kids hearing Jake dream about the day he would have kids to tickle and wrestle with. Once Nathaniel was here... he couldn't wait to have others to battle the time with... he wanted to be covered in kids!

Brayden loved being a part of this playtime. Whenever Daddy and Nathaniel got started, Brayden would come running in to jump in. As small as he was he would do all he could to wiggle his way into the action. Running, playing, laughing, tickeling.... pure joy and fun. When they were weren't tickling or attacking Daddy the boys also loved to play ball. They had a special game where Brayden would sit in Daddy's lap and Nathaniel would be down the hall. They would roll the ball back and forth. Daddy would help Brayden jump up to chase the ball... Nathaniel would always get it first and Brayden would dive back to Daddy's lap to do it all over again... this would go on and on. Oh, what boys they are. Oh, the fun that was had! Sweet, Sweet memories.

One of the few videos we have of Brayden is one of these playtimes. If I can figure out how to upload a video I will add it to this post.
Here is a picture I found... it's not the best pic of true tickle time but shows just how much Brayden loved being in on the action with Daddy! Rule is... once Daddy;s on the floor, he's fair game! LoL

Watching the 3 of them tonight was bittersweet. I love to see them having so much fun, I love to hear Nathaniel laughing and shreaking with joy... but how I miss seeing Brayden over there with them. To think how crazy things would be now....

Miss you and love you so much baby boy! So thankful for all the moments we were able to share... So thankful for all the laughter

Monday, July 20, 2009

In the Arms of Jesus

Its late... and I should be in bed. But I'm itching to blog. Life has been so busy lately and I have not had the time to sit and write. There has been so much on my mind and heart to share... so I decided to catch up a bit.

If you haven't checked out the Name Gallery lately, please do! I have uploaded LOTS of new pictures! Keep them coming! Please send them to You can check out the gallery by clicking on the beach picture in the right sidebar.

I recieved an extremely special gift recently. It was from Kim, a very close friends mother. Last June, shortly after we lost Brayden, Kim was praying and God told her that she was to give me this beautifull statue. It is Jesus holding a little child. It is a Lenox peice called "Footprints in the Sand."

You see... Kim lost a little boy at just 3 days old. This month Christopher would be 34 years old. Shortly after he passed, her mother gave her this statue as a visual reminder of where her little boy was... in the arms of Jesus. Also, as a reminder that when we don't feel strong enough to make it on our own.. God will Carry us through. Kim now felt convinced that God wanted her to pass this statue onto me, as a visual reminder of where my Brayden is...

I cannot begin to express my gratitude for such a special, beautiful and thoughtful gift. It means more than words can express. My favorite picture is of Jesus hugging a little boy (
Pictured in this post) and I carry a copy of that picture in my purse all the time. It is so hard to fathem something like this.. I may never understand the situation this side of heaven. Our human minds can't comprehend Heaven... or what it must be like. It's amazing to be able to have a visual to look at to help imagine what a beautiful sight that must be. It is a source of strength to get through each day as I remember the truth I know in my heart. I may not have all the answeres.. I may not understand the "Why's"... but I do know one thing for sure... that my baby boy is loved, cared for, and missed... but is held safely in the Arms of Jesus!

Thank you Kim for this incredible and beautiful gift. Thank you for your obedience and openess to share your heart with me. Thank you for the prayers and love for our family... God Bless You!!

Sunday, July 5, 2009


Recently, we were asked some challenging questions. There is an incredible opportunity that came our way and I was blessed and honored at the mere thought. Things are still in the works and we will see what the outcome will bring. Whether anything comes from it or not I have been filled with thoughts that I wanted to write out...
What do we feel we are holding back from because of what we have experienced? What things do we wish we could do, but feel unable to accomplish? What are our goals, plans, dreams for the future?
It has really make me think. alot. Life has completely changed in the last year. Everything we do is different. I am more apprehensive, yet cherish the moments more. I am very protective, yet love my children better. I get nervous easily, yet allow the frustrating moments to just pass by. My life is forever changed.
There are so many things I hope to improve. So many things I want to change and feel better. I want to stop holding back and continue living life to the fullest. Living the life that Christ would have us to live. After much thought I have come up with 3 specific things, 3 goals that I would have for our lives. 3 things that I want and need to see come from all that has happened.

1. I want our family to swim again
swimming has ALWAYS been one of my favorite things! I was born at the beach, took lessons and was on swim team through my teens, used it as my preferred cardio exercise, and always loved to swim. I want my children to also know the joy in swimming.
2. I want my children to have swim lessons. The fear that comes from thinking about swimming again has alot to do with the fact that one of them may have the same fate... they would not be prepared, not knowing how to swim. I want so badly for them to learn through lessons so that they as well as us will have confidence in the water. It just seems like such a hard thing to do still...
3. Starting whatever it is we are to do to help others through all this. Whether it be through advocasy, support group, awareness, etc... I know that something big will come of all this... I believe our lives can and will impact the lives of others... and I look forward to the day when we can see what that looks like. In the midst of such pain, I desire to reach out... if only we knew the direction, ... and had the strength...

Phil 4:13, "I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength." Nothing is impossible with God. I know that live will get better... healing will come, pain will be bearable, and lives will be changed. I am so thankful for the love, support and prayers that are contuing to be sent for us. We still need all we can get. I am also blessed to have a Heavenly Father who loves us so much... who gives us His joy and strength to make it through each day. My prayer is to get to the point where He is glorified in all of this. I want to be used as he would want to use us and to reach out to bless others.
It takes time... It takes action... It takes prayer.. It takes strength.
But ALL things are possible.

July 4

As is each "family" event yesterday was another one of those event days where I was really missing my Brayden. It just never seems right to all get together without him. We went as a family to the cemetary. Took flag pinwheels and small flags to add to the arrangements. I know he would have loved the pinwheels so much. We also took a pinwheel with us to the park for fireworks.. it always feels good to have something.. a peice of him there... to feel that he is with us. Here are some pictures from our day...

Big Brother, Nathaniel heloing place some American Flag's into the arrangements.

The dragonflies were here again today!! Although this time there were several! There were in Brayden's tree and flying all around, it was special to see them again. I love these little signs... to know Brayden is with us.. and smiling down on us.

Getting ready for the fireworks!

We love you and miss you so much baby boy! Not a day goes by we don't think of you.. and wish you were with us.