Monday, June 27, 2016

Love Heals

Here I sit at my computer in the wee hours of the night...unable to sleep because of all the thoughts racing through my mind. Sometimes the best medicine for a busy mind is to just write it out. We have had a heck of a week. A week that should have been ordinary turned into one of the most difficult weeks of our lives. I want to go back and write specifically about the days leading up to Baylor's miracle delivery and ongoing recovery to coming home... I hope to do that soon, but for tonight, I just wanted to write out my thoughts on surviving this last week.

So many times people walk through tough times...it's a fact of life. Each and everyone of us will be touched by some sort of difficulty or trial, for some it maybe the heart-wrenching journey of cancer, illnesses, loss of jobs, divorce, loss of a loved one, the list goes on. I've come to realize in this past week that as humans, we can't do this life alone. We need the support of others.  I cannot even begin to express my thanks and gratitude for the new people we have come in contact with this week and as well as our dear friends and family who have clung to us through this journey. Every single nurse, doctor, and staff member has reached out to us with nothing but extreme love and kindness. We have witnessed God's love through so many people and it truly makes a difference in us just getting through each day. We would never be able to make it through without the kindness that has been so greatly lavished upon us. The prayers that have gone up on our behalf mean the world to us and each and every comment on social media, text, email or visit has boosted our morale and given us bits and pieces of strength to keep on moving. I know in 6 months we will look back on this time in our lives and breathe a sigh of relief...it will be a time that we grow, learn and become better from.  But in this current time..while we are walking through it...I just can't express enough thanks. My heart overflows with gratitude for my parents, my in-laws, my siblings, my extended family and my dearest friends. Without ya'll we would grow weary and weak, but because of ya'll we are able to walk this road with Baylor and we will come out at the end with our fists held high.  Baylor will be living proof that love can heal. We don't know the exact outcome of Baylor's medical needs yet, but no matter what...we know he is a fighter and because of the love and support he has...he will succeed in all he does.

Our God is so good. He has sustained us through each day and even when the tears are flowing and we are weak and tired...He has given us supernatural strength. Above all, we are looking for ways to show the greatness of God and all He has done on this journey. We are praying that through this journey we will become better equipped to love others through their own difficult journeys. Never before have I realized the value and importance of just simple acts of support...but I know from here on out, Christian and I will look for ways to support others while they walk through their own trials.

I'll leave you with a few pictures of our little guy.  I am journaling each day about his progress and I hope to start documenting that here on my blog soon.  Also I can't wait to share about his birth. Baylor is a complete miracle and the fact that he is here safe is only by the grace of God. When doctors tell you he is a medical mystery... but one that survived...you know it is only because of our God.

Introducing our precious Baylor Jace, a true miracle from heaven. He is a fighter and our inspiration for pushing onward.







Thursday, June 9, 2016

Swim, Swim, Swim!

I have been an avid, competitive swimmer since I turned 4 years old. Competing on a swim team and participating in competitive meets is one of my greatest memories as a child. To this day, I have a deep love for swimming. I have swam through all three of my pregnancy's...even up to the last month and each time I have said that swimming was my saving grace throughout pregnancy.  Not only do I love swimming myself, I absolutely just feel at home next to a pool. So it is no wonder that my kiddos have a deep love for swimming as well.  Aubrey is a fish and there is nothing that she loves more than to spend hours in the pool. She is actually quite good and I hope to get her on a team next year. Weston also loves the water and is not at all timid or afraid.  In fact, both of my children are a little too comfortable in the water and at such a young age that can be scary.

On Mother's Day, we had quite a scare at my brother's house. We had been swimming for a few hours and I got the kids out to eat lunch. I took Weston's puddle jumper off while he ate on the patio, not thinking he would need it at the table. Boy was I mistaken. Only by the grace of God did I look over into the pool...there was absolutely no splash, no sound, no panic...but I see Weston underneath the water. He apparently left the table, and in his mind, he thought he still had his floatie on and somehow slipped back into the water. I didn't notice anything, again, no noise or splash...he just went right under. Once I noticed him,  I started screaming and I flew as fast as I could into the pool. My brother saw what was happening and reached Weston about the same time. He was able to grab him and pull him up to safety. I am not for sure how long he was submerged but it was so fast and yet while running to him, it seemed like slow motion.  Thankfully, by God's goodness, Weston was not unconscious or harmed. He was a little shaken up but honestly he didn't really understand what had happened. I was shaken to the core. I have had Aubrey fall into the pool before, but nothing like this...it could have been terrible and really we were just mere seconds away from disaster. I cried for the next two days because I was just so upset about the whole incident. You realize how quickly and easy a drowning can happen and it totally rocks your world.

Christian and I have decided that no matter what, if we are outside, swimming or not, eating or not...Weston will wear his puddle jumper. It is just too dangerous to assume he knows when we are done swimming or when we are taking a break to eat.

We also immediately enrolled both kiddos in private lessons at Crawfish Aquatics. I honestly hadn't planned on putting Weston in til next year, but I felt that it was a must. It is very pricey and a good little drive, but it is money and time well spent. We are also looking into getting my CPR certified just so I would be more prepared.







Weston did great with his lessons and he learned that if he falls in, to get to the side and yell "Help, Help". We have been really working with him on that as well as stressing to him that he should never go near a pool without mommy or daddy.  Aubrey has absolutely loved her lessons as well and she can pretty much swim an entire length of the pool unassisted! She is learning great techniques like how to breathe to the side, kick and stroke appropriately...she really  does so well.

 

I'm so proud of my little cuties and how far they have come with swimming. I am so thankful for great programs that teach my little guys techniques and safety measures that they can use to stay safe. I do firmly believe no one, not even the best of swimmers, is exempt from needing to be extra, extra careful in the pool. Things just happen so quickly. Keep those eyes on those babies, make them wear safety devises, teach them proper skills, help them develop a healthy fear of the water, learn what to do in case of an emergency and most importantly pray for protection each time they get near a pool!

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Last day of Pre-K4 (Young 4's)

My sweet Bre has come so, so far. She started out at BPECC in Toddler 2 class, at about 22 months old. She had a terrible time transitioning from staying with my moms to an actual school setting. She made it through the year and then went onto Toddler 3 class. The entire year, she refused to speak to the teachers or students. We really worried about if she had a social problem and feared that this could be the beginning of something deeper. Thankfully, towards the end of the year she began to whisper to her teachers and that was HUGE for her. She has never been shy, she just refused to speak for some reason. This year, she moved up to the preschool section of the school and my Bre has just blossomed like a butterfly. She talks to her teachers and has made a ton of precious friends (mostly boys!) Academically she has just flourished. I worried for a little while that she was not grasping the letter/number concepts, but with time and maturity she has mastered her school work. I am just so proud of how hard she has worked and how far she has come. She misses the deadline for kindergarten, so she will do one more year in Pre-K4, which I think will be a great thing for her. It will give her the chance to grow and develop even more and really shine in all she does. 








I am thrilled with her social and academic growth, but we are working really hard with her spiritual heart as well. We have struggled from day 1 with Bre being very strong willed and a challenge and we still battle that on a daily basis. I only say that because I don't want to paint a picture of all sunshine and roses with my children. I want to be real and honest. Raising children is very hard and Bre likes to keep us on our toes for sure. Aubrey would take a spanking almost everyday and not bat an eye...it just doesn't bother her. She will do what she intends to do, even if it means a punishment. I can totally see myself in her and I really want to teach her to overcome that need for power and control.  

Somethings that Christian and I are seeing success with are through much, much prayer. We pray over her, with her, and even encourage her to pray with us about herself! She has a tender heart when it comes to the Lord and she wants to do what is right in His eyes...so we really try to focus her attention on that. Another great tool for Bre has been learning scripture. I have seen a huge difference in her heart when she is saturated with the Word. We listen to GT and the Halo Express in the car, it's a story and songs with only scripture, and although I am sick of listening to it, I do see a changed in her heart just from hearing the word again and again. Another thing that we have found helpful is staying calm and simply taking something of importance away from her. Getting angry, yelling or even spanking is not effective for her...but having to give up her Ipad for the day, go to bed early or even lose a dessert is a sure way to get her attention. She realizes that good things are reserved for good behavior. She cherishes a night where she gets to stay up late and hang with mom and dad...treats like that are a huge incentive to obey throughout the day. 

Aubrey is an amazing little girl and she has so much life and love in her little heart. I am beyond proud of how far she has come and I honestly can't wait to see the progress she will continue to make. I thank God everyday for giving me a little girl...a spunky...spitfire of a little girl but one that is all mine. 

So here is to you my Bre...continue to shine...continue to be a leader and not afraid to be different. Keep striving to please the Lord above all things and don't ever lose your radiant smile. Mommy and Daddy love you and we are so thankful for all you have taught us along the way! 

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Gearing up for Summer!

Whew! What a busy few weeks we have had. I have been terrible at blogging lately and I can't tell you how many times I have written posts in my head and thought to myself...I gotta remember to write about that.  However life gets crazy busy and my good intentions often get pushed aside for when duty calls. My two little ones are non-stop, crazy, busy...almost all the time so I have to use every bit of energy and stamina just to survive. As my belly gets bigger (um hello 30 weeks!), my ability to keep up gets drastically smaller. I am trying so hard not to miss out on my cuties by being uncomfortable and immobile, I so want to enjoy the summer break with them and do all the things we normally do like the park, pool and splash park...however I am barely able to pack lunches and get out the door without exhaustion! I am constantly reminding myself that they just need love and attention...not non-stop excitement or entertainment.
We have started introducing the potty to Weston and he has not really taken off...at all. I have yet to witness him actually do anything in the potty, Christian says he has tee-teed but I'm not sure it wasn't just a fluke. He loves to sit on the toilet, use tons of toilet paper and flush endlessly...just not actually use the restroom. Nothing like sister making a video of brother on the potty.  I am sure Weston will cherish this picture forever.

We had a fun playdate with our cousins at the splash park, such sweet girls!
Our dear friend opened a snowball stand in our area and we have been making ourselves frequent customers! Red Velvet snowballs are my weakness for sure!


Bre had her artshow at school and it was just precious. She was so proud to show off her hard work. Oh and cake was served so that was a bonus for her!
 Aubrey snapped this one of me and Weston. I just love and adore this boy. Girl cowboy boots and all!
Aubrey is at such a great age when it comes to wanting to learn and soak everything in. She is amazing at puzzles and can finish a workbook in under an hour. She is a total sponge right now and I am so thankful she loves learning. I'm also thankful for her school and teacher who pour into her and help ignite a passion for education. She thinks her teacher is the smartest woman in the world and that she knows more than me and her daddy combined.  Thanks Bre.
We are doing LOTS of backyard water activities because mommy can sit and prop her feet up while the fun takes place! Water tables, slip and slides and pools are just what the doctor ordered!


Christian took Bre on a daddy/daughter date at Chick-fil-A and it was so precious. Bre had a blast and felt so special. Chick-fil-A sure knows what it is doing and had a precious set up.  Complete with dinner, an ice cream bar, face painting and even a rose. I'm so thankful for the relationship these two have...and I can only pray it will keep getting stronger. 





We made the tough decision to find a new home for our Lexie. She was a fantastic dog and was truly a sweetie, but she just didn't need to be in a home with three little ones who nap.  She loved to bark and it drove me crazy! Not to mention that she was spending lots of time in her kennel and that just wasn't fair. We found a fabulous family for her and we are so thrilled she will now get the love and attention she deserves.

Mother's Day this year was one I will not forget! I'll blog about that soon. Here is me and my cuties at church...A little blurry but the best we could do!  So thankful for these precious little ones...they make my life so great.

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Beach or Bust 2016!

We are starting an annual, Moots-only beach trip on a budget and this was year two.  We started planning this back in January and we were literally counting down the days. We made a huge poster and hung it in our kitchen of the countdown til the beach!  Last year we surprised the kids the morning we left, but this year we decided to really talk it up and get the kids excited. Weston really had no idea what the beach even was, but he told everyone we came in contact with that we were leaving for the beach in "four days" according to him. They were just so excited...as were we!

We planned to go a little earlier than usual because Christian only gets ever 8 weekends off, and we figured if we waited another 8 weeks, I'd be huge and pregnant and miserable. It was a little chilly but overall the kiddos had a blast.

Weston got his hair cut the day before we left and I just could have eaten him up.  He is such a cutie pie.


This was the morning we left. I took this same picture last year when we left and I hope to do it every year...sorta as a comparison shot. 

 Top one is last year and bottom is this year. They are growing up so fast. 

Day 1 was a success...spent about an hour prepping for the beach and about 15 minutes on the beach before the kids were tired of it and ready for the pool. My kiddos are not huge beach/sand fans and really just wanted to swim in the pool. We did manage to get them to make a few sand castles and bury each other. With all the prep work required to actually get down to the beach...I can honestly say I'd just prefer the pool myself.  The sand was cool to the touch and the wind was kinda blowing so that made it not so fun. The heated pool was calling their names! 





I didn't get many shots at the pool because we were so busy!  Bre is a busy body in the pool, and refuses to wear a floatie because she believes she is a better swimmer than that. HAHA! She really does great at swimming and is fearless. Keeping her from going out too far is my biggest challenge. We got her some diving rings and it was by far the best $5.00 I have spent. She spent hours throwing those things and then retrieving them. I was amazed at her skills! All Weston really wants to do is just jump in and then float around in his puddle jumper. He prefers the more relaxed approach! 

Day 2 was more of the same. Spend an hour getting ready...15 minutes at the beach before they start complaining! Snacks helped a little but by 10:30 they are screaming, "let's go to the pool"







  




I laugh at this picture because this is the best example of the struggle it takes to get all of your things down to the beach! HAHA!


We packed our days with beach and pool and then at night we tried to do fun things out on the town. One night we went crabbing and then a late night ice cream run. Another night we went to the hangout and ate dinner and played in their sand pit (eww). We also had fun going to a candy shop and let the kids pick any treat they wanted. They both chose chocolate covered Twinkies!




We did some more late night swimming with this cutie and then had to call it a night after someone pooped in his swim diaper.  We won't name names. 



We ended our trip with a visit to the Track. It was an amuzement/ride type place and the kiddos just ate it up. Aubrey got to ride the real go carts with daddy and she was in heaven!  I get no greater joy than seeing their faces light up with excitement and amazement. They are just so fun at this age. 




It was such a special few days. Nothing fancy, nothing expensive, just the four of us hanging out and enjoying one another. You can't put a price tag on that. Making memories with these cuties is what we love to do! Can't believe next year we will be bringing baby brother along with us! So fun!

Here's to a wonderful trip, full of amazing memories and wonderful moments.