it’s monday again + non-toy gifts.

This is going to get old, but wow, last week was crazy!  It just keeps happening.  Some how, the older Jack gets, the more we’re involved in, the busier we get.  And fall makes it that much worse!  Fall is my very favorite season — and yesterday felt like fall!  It was cool.  It was 59 degrees when we got dressed for church.  Jack wore a light sweater with elbow patches — ahhh!!  I wore boots and light sweater.  LOVELY.  I love fall!  All of that to say, we have been running around like crazy it feels like.  Last week was a blur, but we are good and had many good things happen.

Friday evening Jack and Tommy spent some time together — it was sweet!  Tommy has started taking Jack golfing.  Jack loves it!  It’s fun for them to spend time together, and I think Tommy has been waiting for this for awhile.  Saturday morning we woke up early to head downtown for a 5K.  It was the Sprint for the Prints 5K for Precious Prints.  A really great cause — they help provide comfort to families like ours who lose a child, so we were happy to support them.  It definitely is something that we would have loved to have for Gabriel.  Our friends the Parrishes, who we met last year after they lost their baby, did a video for Precious Prints [I shared on my facebook page a couple of weeks ago] and are a family who has a charm of their daughter’s thumbprint.  Jack rode in his stroller and then ran through the finish line with us.  He loved the 5K!  It’s right up his alley.  Afterwards, he checked out the food and had a bag of Cheetos, an orange, 2 donuts, and a water bottle.  Gotta refuel.

weekend 5k

Then we headed home to set up for Tommy’s sister and brother in law’s going away party that we hosted.  They move to Nebraska today, so we had a fun time Saturday afternoon celebrating them with all their people.  Then we went to mom and dad’s for burgers and came home, put Jack to bed and watched the Tennessee game.  It was a full day!  And so fun.  We will really miss Molly and Drew but are so happy for them and this big move in their lives.

weekend going away weekend molly and drew weekend party

So we had a great weekend, lots of fun celebrating and hanging out, and resting and playing on Sunday.  A great weekend!  Now on to a new week.  Today I’m over at the Knoxville Moms Blog sharing one of my very favorite list posts to date — 25 non-toy gifts for kids.  I’m ALL about this.  Head on over there and check it out!

non-toy gifts for kids

Hope you had a wonderful weekend!  Did it feel like fall where you are??

latest happenings.

This month is flying by!  I still can’t believe it’s November, and it’s already 1/3 of the way through the month. 


Yesterday Jack and I got to go to lunch with my Grandfather.  We had a special Veteran’s Day lunch with him and then dinner at his house last night. 


 Veterans day

My favorite Veteran 




Last week was a blur.  Jack had hand, foot, and mouth disease, and it was rough.  Very little sleeping, a lot of crying, and no eating and minimal drinking.  He had some dehydration issues, but thankfully we were able to get him to drink just enough until he was feeling better.  Now I have hand, foot, and mouth, but it’s not nearly as bad as Jack’s was.  Poor boy had blisters all over the place, but his mouth was the worst!  So thankful he is so much better! 


Three weeks ago Jack was around some irritants to his asthma and had a bad asthma attack.  He needed oral steroids to help improve his lungs, and our pediatrician started him on an inhaled maintenance steroid – which we have been talking about doing for awhile and now know we definitely need to do.  Hopefully it will help to keep him from having these bad asthma spells.  He was having trouble getting oxygen in, and I didn’t even realize how bad it was.  I felt terrible.  But he is ok, and our pediatrician is fantastic at taking care of him and reassuring me. 


Other than the sickness, we are just moving quickly through the fall.  Jack is loving preschool, and he and I are both crazy about his teachers!  We ran into one of his preschool teachers from last year at Target over the weekend – it was so nice to see her again.  We have been so blessed that Jack has had 4 amazing preschool teachers!  These women have taught him [and me] so much, encouraged him [and me], and loved on him when we leave him in their care. 


I am really enjoying the time I have while he is at preschool.  I had decided not to send him this year.  When I had thought about it last winter when everyone registers, I thought it would be good for him to be there so I could have some time with our new baby.  But after we lost Gabriel, I didn’t think I could send him.  And it didn’t feel right, too.  I am so thankful for a precious woman who talked to me and encouraged me to take this time.  I’m also so thankful for her heart to bless us by sending our toddler to preschool, and so thankful for all of those who helped make it happen.  I still can’t believe it, and we feel so undeserving, but are so very thankful for that gift.  It has been really nice to have that time and be able to rest, work on some things, and heal.  Really thankful for this sweet gift. 



That’s about all that’s going on around here.  That and that it is freezing today!  I’m going to go dig out our winter clothes now.  We definitely need them now.  Hope your week is off to a nice start! 

30. when memorials give hope.

This is it – we are wrapping up October, wrapping up the 31 Days series.  I could actually write on this topic for awhile longer, but I will be ready to take a break from thinking about one thing.  It sure has been good for my brain and my heart though to focus on hope for a month.  But I will talk more about that tomorrow when I recap this month. 


Today I wanted to share a sweet memorial.  My parents’ neighbors placed this in my parents’ backyard as a memorial for Gabriel and my Granny. 


memorial planter



It was such a kind act, a sweet gesture of hope.  Because now when I’m at my parents’ and I look in their backyard I will remember my sweet baby and my loving grandmother.  I’m thankful for this that reminds me of them – for the hope that they are in Heaven, for the freedom to remember and smile, and for the joy that I have from being blessed with them in my life. 


One thing I’ve realized by writing through this month of hope is that I want to be hope-giving to others.  We have had so many people giving us gifts that give life, that give hope.  And I hope that one day I am able to do that, too.