Thursday, October 27, 2011

Daycare story

Stryker's teacher stopped Logan at the door as he dropped Stryker off yesterday. The conversation went a little like this...

teacher: "I need to tell you what Stryker did yesterday during nap time."
Logan: "Oh no, what did he do?"
teacher: "All the kids were asleep on their cots, except for Stryker. He was laying there very still with eyes open. I turned around after cleaning the counter to find out Stryker was not laying on his cot. He's fast because I was only turned for a second."
Logan: "You have no idea."
teacher: "I found him laying underneath the boy's cot that was next to his. He saw me looking at him. So, he cut his eyes away from me & would glance back in my direction to see if I was still looking at him. As I walked toward him whispering that he needs to get back on his cot to sleep, he slid out the other side & tip-toed to the wall. He tried to stand as close to the wall as possible & would, again, keep checking in my direction with a little grin. It was like he was telling me that I couldn't see him! But he was not making a peep. I picked him up with him smiling big, rocked him for a little while before putting him back on his cot. He was so cute!"

Now, you see what a handful our little boy is going to be!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Birthday Party weekend!

Saturday (October 22nd) was Coco's 60th birthday!!! Happy Birthday Coco!!! May you have many more wonderful years. Stryker & I played with Coco all day along with watching football. Then, we had dinner at Bright Star in Bessemer (Coco's choice for her celebration). It was a surprise dinner! She was completely surprised! Thanks for all her friends for coming.

Aunt Barbara with Coco

Sunday afternoon (October 23rd) was occupied with another birthday party. It was our friend's daughter's 1st birthday, Precious Peyton! Such a sweet girl.

Stryker & the birthday girl

flirting as usual

Stryker & daddy stuffing their faces with cupcakes & ice cream

feeding himself

enjoying some cake pops

sliding outside

first time to drive a power-wheel; guess we know what to get for Christmas!

driving the power-wheel

hitting the cupcake pinata!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Devotion #14 - Is it my fault?

"My child is dead & it's my fault! My body failed me & didn't fulfill its purpose. I was too active & stressed." This is a common feeling for me & possibly many other women.

When life knocks you to your knees, remember you're in the perfect position to pray.

Is a still, small voice within calling your name. Listen. Can you hear Him saying, "It's time to free yourself from your guilt & forgive yourself." The grief journey may lead you to a place where you need to forgive yourself. If I take a step back & look at my feelings, I can realize that this applies to me as well. The concept of letting go of anger, guilt, & condemnation toward yourself may be something you have never considered as sin, which keeps you separated from God. God will forgive me & will enable me to forgive myself. Perhaps I even need to forgive myself for placing blame needlessly on myself. This is a difficult thing to do because I want to find something or someone to blame. My self-critical personality leads me to blame only myself which is not the way it should be. Having faith in God requires me to trust in Him & His plan. For whatever reason, this miscarriage was in His plan, so I need to forgive myself & draw closer to Him in order to move forward.

When we forgive God for our miscarriage, we release our expectations of what we think God should have done to prevent hurt, failure, or loss of any kind. God has big shoulders & allows us to vent. He wants us to tell Him how we feel so we can trust Him wholeheartedly. Satan is defeated when we stop pointing our finger at God (or ourselves) & admit our false expectations. God understands fully. He suffered the loss of a child too. These statements hit me hard. I never thought about it that way. So cry out to God if you need to, I did. He is the only person that can truly understand & at the same time, heal you.

Lord, I feel so guilty & often blame myself for losing my child. Although others try to comfort & console me, deep down inside I'm haunted by the thought that I could have done more. I feel snowed in from my grief. My mound of self-condemnation is so high outside the door of my heart that I feel as if I'll never be able to dig out. Help me, God. Enable me to forgive myself. Dig through the snowdrift of my guilt & melt away my blame. You are my redeemer, the One who has the power to set me free. Restore me today. Amen

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Pumpkin Patch 2011 - Hayden, AL

As you can see below, we had a wonderful time at the Pumpkin Patch! Stryker was able to do more this year instead of just being toted around. We arrived right after lunch & spent the rest of the afternoon enjoying the outdoors.

this boy's too hyper to pose behind one of these!

We weren't sure how Stryker would do jumping in the inflatables, but after a few seconds he started jumping around like crazy! He loved it & we really enjoyed watching him.


When there were lots of kids, Stryker would sit down & let the other kids bounce him all over the place! He would just laugh hysterically & so would we.

now, this is a tractor

Stryker was able to ride a horse! The owners were amazed when Stryker immediately grabbed the saddle with perfect posture like he's done this his whole life. The owners were really shocked when they found out Stryker was only 20 months old!

proud daddy!

look at him go!

he's a natural

at the petting zoo

he's my size daddy!

peeking through

petting the animals

oink, oink

Stryker kept saying "quack, quack" thinking these were ducks

what is this?!

this one's funny looking

hay ride to the pumpkin patch

let's roll this ball!

trying to pick it up

jumping in the hay

of course, he flirted with the girls

climbing all over the place

throwing hay at mom

mom dumping hay on Stryker

I love playing with my little boy

riding with mom on the way back from the patch

this boy has stolen my heart

inflatable slides!

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Kiss the camera

Stryker loves to play with our phones. One day, I turned my video on to see what he would do. He saw his face & kept kissing the phone. The funny things kids do!

Stryker's 20 months old!

Yet another month has passed. Little boy, you still amaze us with your personality & intelligence. You have lots of fun each day & never want to miss a thing. Guess that's why you don't like your daytime naps! Here's what is new:

1. still loves to sleep in your own bed with lots of blankets (which by the way are not used to cover you, but to cover your head!)

2. new bedtime routine: crawl in our bed, pull the covers up to your neck, point to tv, point for us to lay next to you, smile, & say "tv" (you want to watch sports or something on sprout tv for kids)

3. still loves to play ball, be outside, dance, sing, play rough, run, climb, play in water, etc.

4. potty training started about 3 wks ago: you're doing wonderful; the teachers are amazed at how quickly you're picking it up; hoping to stop buying diapers in the near future!

5. words that you have said: Elmo, cookie, water, please, more, dadda, momma, mom, no, yes, ball, baseball, football, Coco, pee-pee, poo-poo, potty, dog, cat, boo-boo, cracker, in there, milk, bean, blueberry, yellow, red, mouth, ear, head, nose, eye, blanket, tv, car, bird, Bert (from Sesame Street), hot, cold, tea, bat, bath, light, fan, quack-quack, meow, woof-woof, awww (lion sound), balloon

6. can drive a power-wheel car

7. can switch hit when playing baseball (stronger left-handed though)

8. loves to draw or color

9. still a dare devil: we have yet to find anything that scares you

10. wants to cook your own waffle in the toaster

11. like lots of different foods: corn-on-the-cob, baked beans, fries, green beans, tomatoes, hamburger/cheeseburger, pizza, pork chops, mandarin oranges, apples, grilled cheese, french toast sticks (cinnamon), blueberry Ego waffles, shrimp, bread, cucumbers, ice cream, cookies, cheetos, cheese curls, crackers (all kinds), watermelon, chocolate milkshakes, tater tots, loaded potato bites, chicken, blueberries, biscuits, scrambled eggs, cornbread, pinto beans, white chicken chili, chips, candy corn, m&m's,

12. beverages: love milk & sweet tea, hate juices, not a big fan of carbonated drinks

We love you so much, buddy! Can't wait to see what this next month brings...

Friday, October 14, 2011

Friday night football!

Uncle Steve with Stryker watching the drummers

Aunt Barbara & Stryker watching the football game

We took Stryker to this year's Homewood High School football game! It was October 14th at 7pm but we were able to get there early to see the festivities. We met Coco, Aunt Barbara, Uncle Steve, & Uncle Dan! We had a blast!! Stryker really enjoyed watching the Homecoming queen walk on the field (such a flirt). He also would watch the drummers & try to mimic them. Surprisingly, he was on beat! Guess, he got his musical genes from daddy. He would sit in our laps watching the football game & saying "foooo-baaaalllll" every so often. So cute. We missed Uncle Jon & soon-to-be Aunt Holli (Uncle Jon played the drums in Homewood's band). Maybe next time.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Chasing girls will always get you in trouble...

riding the carousel at the Galleria with Coco & momma

his little black eye

Saturday was a lazy day for the little man & me. Stryker woke up late which allowed me to get the housework & laundry completed. We sat around watching football & eating a late breakfast. Around 3pm, we met Coco at work before running errands & then meeting Logan at Mugshots to eat dinner. It was perfect weather for outside eating. The radio allowed us to keep up with the Alabama game & the t.v.'s were on the Auburn game. Stryker enjoyed watching football, eating, & seeing all the people. We had a good time, but Stryker spotted a blond-haired, diamond ear-pierced little girl to play after we ate. Stryker would run up to her, lay his head on the wall, wave his little hand, smile, & say "hey". So sweet & such a flirt! At least he has good taste, right?! The little girl's dad was laughing at the two because it was so comical. Stryker tried to run past her so fast but ended up catching his foot on a crack in the cement resulting in a face plant. He poked his bottom lip out, reached for Logan, & cried. I think he was slightly embarrassed. A black eye started to appear. Logan took the opportunity to give Stryker a manly talk while walking back to the car. "Son, it doesn't matter if you're 2 or 22 years old, girls are always going to do this to you..." I wish I had this little talk on camera.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Potty Training 101

Yes, we are starting potty training this week. Some people say that 19 months is too young but Stryker's school teacher said that he was ready. So let the fun begin...

Monday was day 1 of potty training for the little guy. His teacher said to bring him to school in a diaper & then she would take it off. Mrs. Kelli is an amazing teacher! We appreciate her so much. I gave him a big pep talk Sunday night before he went to bed. I know, he's too young to understand my pep talk. But I wanted to psych him up! Logan dropped him off at school around 7:30 am. Coco picked Stryker up around 2pm. The teacher said we should continue the potty training at home with taking him to the potty every 30 min & only putting a diaper on during sleep. Even though he had several accidents throughout the day, he was able to pee pee in the potty that afternoon!! Logan & I hated we missed this first but Coco was able to witness it. Way to go buddy!! Tuesday (day 2) was a little better than Monday. Stryker went pee pee in the potty 4 times & several small accidents. Wednesday included a few small accidents & pee pee in the potty about 3 times. We are so proud of how fast you are catching on to this potty training thing. I've always heard that boys are harder to train but you're making it look so easy! Keep up the good work little man!

Friday, October 7, 2011

Devotion #13

Sometimes I think that I'm coping with my loss fine until a person, place, thing, or event triggers a sensitive spot inside of me. I try to excuse my silence or rationalize my anger, but my heartache keeps getting worse, occasionally keeping me awake at night. It seems as thought I'm running into more & more pregnant women. "God, I really don't need a constant reminder" - thoughts that fill my mind. I know He is not playing a mean joke or trying to always give me a reminder but I catch myself asking Him so many questions. Seeing an abundant amount of pregnant women is just me being more observant because of my loss. Pregnancy & birth is always a miracle. No matter if the pregnancy/labor went smoothly or there were complications, it is still a miracle. I've always felt this way, but I definitely understand it more deeply after Stryker & our miscarriage. Ever since Stryker was born, I've said a short silent prayer when I see someone pregnant (asking for a smooth pregnancy) or when I see a newborn (thanking God for a wonderful miracle).

Our doctor played a significant role in our loss experience. Dr. Adcock & the other medical staff has influenced our family during our struggle at the end of our pregnancy with Stryker as well as during this miscarriage. I truly thank God for leading us to meeting Dr. Adcock so that we would have faith in our care. You should thank God for how He used your doctor if you experience a difficult pregnancy or miscarriage. It reminds us that He is in control with every aspect of our lives.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Devotion #12

Sunday was the third part of "At the Movies" series at church. We are Marshall was the focus. Thank you, Pastor Andy for the sermon on adversity. I really needed it to prepare for this week. I thought I was doing well until yesterday when there were several things that sparked a reminder of our miscarriage. I did a lot of praying last night for strength & peace from God. I guess it showed me that I still need time to heal & there will still be difficult days. Grief is a process.

The righteous perish, and no one ponders it in his heart; devout men are taken away, and no one understands that the righteous are taken away to be spared from evil. Those who walk uprightly enter into peace; they find rest as they lie in death. - Isaiah 57:1-2

This Bible verse spoke to me during church. I don't understand why this happened to our innocent baby, but I should be comforted knowing that God spared our baby from evil. We don't know why this happened or the cause, but we know without a doubt that God has a plan for our lives & our baby's life. Baby Green #2, we love you & will see you in Heaven one day.

"God takes the place of Mom & Dad. He's the best parent a child could have. Don't worry about the children, Jesus has a rocking chair..." This is a good quote from the book. It reminds me that God is caring for our baby until we get to Heaven. We are all children of God.

Lord, am I suppose to hurt this much? My arms ache to hold and rock my baby. I miss my precious baby. Will my life's song always be so sad? Meet me where I am today and encourage me with Your truth. You are my song of hope. It's comforting to imagine that You could be holding my child in Your arms. Right now, I need You to hold me. Wrap Your arms of peace around me and rock away my fears. Put a new song in my mouth. Amen