her first day of twelve


Today my sweet girl turned twelve.  Oh how I miss her tiny little hands and toes, but oh how I love the beautiful young lady she’s becoming.

Her day consisted of our traditional donuts, swimming with friends, and presents with family.  And then her friends joined us once again for cake and ice cream.  I know this is how it’s going to be now.  Friend time slowly starts taking priority over family time.  I know this is the normal progression of things.  It hurts my mama heart a little bit, but seeing her happy on her birthday made up for all of my feelings.  After all, the day was about her, not about me.  About this sweet baby girl who has grown up SO much the past six months.  Her birthday reminds me what an incredible gift she is.  And I hope I help remind her of this every day.

Happy Birthday to my dear Evie Grace.  You are a shining light and you make us so proud.  It is my greatest joy watching you grow.  Love you so very very much.

her last day of eleven


It is the night before this sweet girl turns twelve.  She has grown up so much the past year.  Even the past 6 months.  Even more so the past 3 months.  Heck, I look back at pictures from just a few weeks ago and I swear she’s an inch taller.

She doesn’t like to hear that she’s growing.  When people comment on how she’s almost my height you can see her shrinking a bit in hopes that maybe they’ll think she’s shorter than what she actually is. It’s an interesting time….when she has one foot still in her childhood and another one dipping into adulthood.  I can see that a part of her really wants to just stay a kid, while the other part of her desperately wants to grow up.  And while it’s a little heartbreaking seeing her change, it’s been so wonderful to see how she’s matured not just in height, but emotionally and socially.  So many things that make my mama heart ache, yet so many things that make it burst with pride.

I think this almost 12-year-old girl is pretty amazing.

(It was a little tougher getting her to take these photos this year, as she was very busy hanging out with her friends.  She gave me about 3 minutes to quick take these.  Just a sign of the times.  To see how much she’s grown from last year, click here.)


Their last days of 3rd and 6th grade

It’s hard to believe the school year is already over.  It went by SO fast.  Warp speed.  It’s going faster each year.  Why don’t you just tear my heart out right now?

With that being said, I love summer.  We are so happy it’s here.  I love having them home, having no schedules, no homework, no making lunches, no nagging them to do all the things.  And I feel so good about this year, Evie’s first year of middle school.  Do you remember all my feelings the beginning of the year?  I was so worried about how it was all going to go.  And it went SO WELL.  Evie thrived this year.  She did amazing.  And Eli rocked 3rd grade.  Prayers answered.  I am so proud of them both.  They are great kids and now I get them home for the summer.

I love them so much.  Summer please go slow.


a month of good things

“How abundant is your goodness which you have stored up for those who fear you.”

Psalm 31:19


Darin was unexpectedly laid off from his job in March, but ended up accepting another exciting opportunity by April’s end.  It’s an amazing story of faith and trust, a one and a half year journey that led us to where we are now.  God has taught me so much during this time.  And I am so proud of my husband and so grateful for God’s provision in our lives. It brings me to tears to think about it.

Instead of starting his new job right away, he decided to take some time off.  An entire month.  It was so nice to have him home.  He got up every morning with me to see the kids off to school, driving or walking them to the bus stop with me.  He came along to all of the school functions and had lunch with Eli at school on his birthday.  He took both Evie and Eli to the doctor while I was working to get them checked out and picked up prescriptions.  He took almost daily walks with me and Leo.  He also got a lot of things done around the house.  We took advantage of our day alone time while the kids were at school and grabbed coffee and lunch and drove to South Minneapolis and took walks around the lakes and shopped and spent a lot of time sitting on our front porch.  Other than the week and a half we were both sick, it was absolutely lovely.

Today is his first day at his new job and I miss him.  I know that sounds sappy.  And I thought I might miss my alone time during the week while he was home.  But having him here was just so nice.  I know it was an incredible gift that I don’t take for granted.  It made me feel very thankful for him and my little family and our time together. And thankful for this next chapter that we are starting today.

Heather - This is so sweet! I’m so glad you had that time together and that everything worked out with the job. I hope you both had a good day today!

his first day of nine


Today he turned nine.  I can’t believe it.  I remember the first moment I held him in my arms in the operating room.  I remember holding him for hours the following days in the hospital.  I remember snuggling him in the middle of the night in the NICU for a week.  I’m wondering if this is why he’s such a great hugger.

We had our typical birthday breakfast, he picked long johns.  The decorations were all gold for our golden boy for his golden birthday.  It was so great that Darin was home with us.  It happened to be his GEL program at school, which worked out nicely.  We loved seeing him give his presentation and having lunch with him.  We went and got birthday ice cream after school.  It’s all about the treats on your birthday.  Evie got him a chess set.  He loved it.  He got a Kindle.  He can’t wait to read on it.  He requested pizza for supper and then we had his birthday cake….red velvet with chocolate frosting that Evie helped decorate.  His neighbor friends enjoyed some cake with us and then they played chess with him on the living room floor.  There were a few tears at bedtime because he didn’t want his special day to be over.  He was all smiles today and gave out hugs like gifts, even a big snuggle and hug when I tucked him in for bed.  He’s good like that.

Happy Birthday to my sweet boy.  You are such a great kid.  And you are incredibly loved.  I thank God every day for the gift of you and your hugs.  xo

Heather - I love seeing these posts every year! I can’t get over how much he has grown this year. I’m so glad he had a great day, even with the tears!