Mother’s Day and a message from Dr. Chuck

Mother’s Day is one of those holidays that carries mixed emotions for many folks. While some are over the moon to celebrate their first of many special days as a mom themselves, others are grieving the losses of their own mothers, grandmothers, children who MADE them mothers or the babies who they never got to hold in their arms. Still others are praying for the 7 millionth time that THIS will be the year they get to be called mama. That was the case for my cousin, who, for as long as I can remember, always, always, always wanted a baby of her own. For 20 plus years she and her hubby struggled with infertility and baby loss and the horrible, wrenching pain that comes with knowing you have the heart of parents, but not the baby to fulfill the role.

Until this year! This year, in January, God picked THEM. They received the call that a birth mother wanted them to parent the sweet baby girl she would soon be bringing into the world. Can I just tell you what immense joy has surrounded my family at the arrival of baby Smiley. I can’t even describe the divine hand that was so apparent throughout the process, but I can tell you, that THIS was the most memorable of mother’s days for her. So, as my cousin was one of those children mourning the loss of her own mother on the day, this year the sting was accompanied by sheer happiness as she spent the day with her sweet baby girl.

Hers is a story of hope and as I held my own mixed emotions on Mother’s Day, I saw in my cousin’s story a huge motivation to choose joy. On Sunday, Hfoe took Chuckles and me to the beach after church. We decided on arrival it may have been just a little too windy and cool for bathing suits, but we did dip our toes in the water and chase a screaming Chuck as she darted away from waves. After our beach shenanigans, we decided to head to the marina, where, on a whim, I said I wanted to rent a paddle boat to putter along around the big boats and to see the sea lions up close. It was perfect. As we peddled peacefully around million dollar yachts, Hubs did the bulk of the work, C steered and I took a quiet moment to think about Blue. I know our baby blueberry made us parents of two nuggets and in my mind I celebrated that as we watched sea lions bark at lurkers nearby. I may never have gotten to hold her or hear her call me “mama.” She will never give me a scribbled Mother’s Day card from the nursery at church, but in my heart I know I will see her again and celebrate with her in Heaven. So, for my first Mother’s Day as both a mother to my most favorite runtly and a mother to one gone too soon, I smiled. I laughed with my honey and giggled at my sweet girl as she was so excited to steer the boat and “do it myself!”

After our paddle boat ride, we were famished! All I really cared about was getting some nourishment, but we took a walk to the end of the marina and chose an upstairs restaurant with a killer view and a 30 minute wait. At first, the wait time was a little daunting with our squirmy toddler, but when our “first available” seating preference yielded a prime spot on the patio overlooking the water…we knew we had scored! The kid was behaved, the fish and chips were delish and the scenery was perfect. All in all, the day was made really great by my handsome hunter-fisher-outdoorsman-extraordinaire. HE was, by far, the catch of the day! Ha! I had to throw out the cheesy obvious line! Oh, and I forgot to mention the AMAZING surprise of the morning! He had worked in cahoots with our photographer who had taken an impromptu photo of Chuck and me at her 2 year photo shoot. It wasn’t a shot I had purchased because it wasn’t in the budget, but I loved it. Well, he bought it! And on canvas, none-the-less. AND, he did it all without me having a clue WEEKS ago! Isn’t forethought the BEST gift ever! Sorry girls, he’s taken!

So, as we drove back home we talked about what this next year has in store for us. We have lots of big things coming up and we decided that maybe we should go ahead and let y’all know the biggest of things…right here. Well, we will let Chuck tell you.

She has a budding fascination with doctoring. I blame it on her talking Doc McStuffins stethoscope. There’s not much cuter than a two year old with a lisp asking to listen to your heart. Or in this case…


Dr. Chuckles confirms: Baby Brother or Sister to arrive on Turkey day.

That’s right folks! It has happened again and boy was that fast! I am already 12 weeks along and we have seen the heartbeat twice. We are feeling confident in this little bean and we are secure in the knowledge that only God knows His plans for our family. Soooo, prayers for stickiness are appreciated and cherished!

P.S. I wanted to take a second to say thank you to all of you for your support and prayers through what has been the hardest life event for our family. As we anticipate the arrival of this next gift, we celebrate the love that has surrounded us from even places and people we would never have thought to search. And, now, we choose JOY!

Silhouette Craft for Mother’s Day

I came up with this really cute idea for the grandparents at Christmas, but I decided to post about my yarn and jute ornament craft at that time instead. So, I thought I would share this with you now for a quick, thoughtful Mother’s Day craft!
 Have you ever admired your grandmother’s silhouette plaque from when she was child? Or maybe you have been to Disneyland and considered purchasing the black outline of your little cherub’s face? Well, now you can do it for yourself!
What you’ll need:
White/off white wood plaque from craft store
Mod Podge
black paper
About 6 inches ribbon
hot glue gun
Digital Camera and printer
First, you need to take a clear profile photo of your child. I lined Chuck up against our white wall and had Hfoe keep her attention looking the correct direction so I could snap a few pics and then decide which was the best to print for our purposes. Once her photo was printed on regular printer paper, I cut it out around the outline of her profile.
Next, I traced the outline of her sweet little face in pencil on black paper and cut it out. I used construction paper, but I suggest black scrapbook paper or something similar since once I got to the mod podge stage the construction paper started to shed a little. Overall, I liked the flecked look of the final result, but you may not.
Once your silhouette has been cut out, it’s time for the mod podge! I’m not gonna lie, this is my favorite part. I love how such a simple crafter’s tool can create such masterpieces! Anyway, swipe a small amount of mod podge on the back of your outline and align it in the middle of your plaque. Once your kiddo’s face is good ‘n stuck, you can begin slowly swiping thin layers of mod podge over the top of the entire plaque. You want a uniform look and because the mod podge will leave faint lines, choose a direction for brush strokes and stick with it. I suggest at least two coats, but I think I did more like four. Just be sure to let it dry between coats so it doesn’t get all goopy.
Once the front of your piece of art is completely dry, flip it over to attach your ribbon for hanging. I chose a sea foam green color because I figured it would go with most decors, but you can choose any color. Cut the length you want and tie the ends together in a pretty little bow. Next, go crazy with hot glue to attach it…like REALLY attach it! Too much is never enough! You wouldn’t want this little gem to fall off a wall due to a poorly attached ribbon!
And that’s it! Voila! You have a pretty, nostalgic, thoughtful Mother’s Day gift of your little nugget’s face fit for gifting to every doting grandmother in your life! Enjoy, Share and craft away kids!
Oh, and don’t forget to enter my giveaway I’ve got going on here.