Go USA

To celebrate the Olympics, and to help Andy make a fun video for youth group this week, the boys decided to perform in their very own twirling event.  The pictures cannot do this moment justice, because the music playing, the excited screams and laughter made this, oh so much fun.  Even Opal Dean got to participate with a streamer attached to her tail.  Bradford was probably the hit of the show with lots of awesome dance moves, and his attire of choice: just underwear.  Hilarious.

 

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# 3

We are proud to announce that Nelson baby # 3 is on the way, due February 20th.  Praise God from whom all blessings flow.

Safe Families

We have an extra visitor staying with us for a while.  It’s an exciting opportunity, stretching, yet in a good way.  A few months ago, Andy and I were contemplating what the best ways for our family to serve outwardly in this season when we have small children at home and are pretty limited in what we can do outside the home.  I read the book, Kisses from Katie, which if you haven’t read, I would highly recommend it.  The problem is, if you read it, you might not every think the same way again.

After a night of listening to Katie Davis speak (we watched a bunch of her Youtube videos) about answering God’s call to love your neighbor, and feeling like we were ready and wanting to answer that call, we felt like the best way for us to do that was to go through the process to become a Safe Family.  The program is designed for families in crisis who cannot, for a various reasons, care for their children at the moment.  Instead of losing them to foster care, these parents are given a chance to allow a safe family to host the child for a short period of time (average stay is 6 weeks), and see if they can get their feet back on the ground to welcome their children back home.  Ideally, we will work with the mom, or whoever the guardian is, and assist them as well through their time of struggle.

Our role is to care for the child, which is why we currently have an extra little guy with us.  He’s already taught our family so much.  Our kids have welcomed him into our home so well.  He’s teaching us to love someone who is struggling, to open our home to someone who otherwise wouldn’t have one, and he’s teaching us to rely on God and each other for extra grace and strength.  Our prayer is that through this process, we as a family could show the love of Christ with the hurting, and that we too would learn more about how Christ loves us.

We’re not sure about putting up pictures yet, so will need to check and see what is allowed there before we post anything.  But if an extra little boy ends up in some of our pictures and posts, you can see his sweet little face and pray for him and his family during this time.

Welcome Baby Vance!

One of the highlights of this last trip to GA was that my friend, Jenny, welcomed her second little guy into the world while we were there.  He was a little over 2 weeks early, so what an exciting surprise it was to get to meet him.  Jenny was such a champ as she had a super fast labor and had him almost immediately after arriving at the hospital!  I was so very excited to meet this little guy!

Jenny, Vance, and silly big brother, Cade:

Look at all that hair:

We love you baby Vance!

 

Our Last Summer Trip…

Last week, Andy was headed up to Atlanta for a week with the youth group at GoldRush, a student led youth conference at Perimeter.  So the boys and I hopped in the car and decided to do a little road trip with our cousins.  Sarah and I left early Monday morning and drove up to Atlanta with 5 kids 3 and under!  We had such a great time and created some really fun memories.  It was awesome to get some more time with our family, and the boys have loved all the cousin time.

We had a great time at a splash park for lunch one day:

It’s always fun to be with Riri and Pop.  We had a great visit with Grammy and cousin, Olivia too!

And we had a blast hanging out at Gigi and Papa’s house.  We got to be there to celebrate Gigi’s birthday, and get lots of good cousin time.  Here are a couple pictures of the kids lined up to put on their “show.”  Ella was the leader in teaching the younger kids some new dance moves, and it was so cute to watch.

 

We sure will miss seeing the cousins and all our family every day!  It’s been a great summer with lots of opportunities to be together, and we are so thankful!

Bman and Daddy photo fun

There is almost nothing Bradford likes as much as the iphone.  The other day Bradford and I (Andy) took a couple of pictures on the phone and I think you can tell Bman was having a good time. My fave is the serious face picture where Bradford is trying his hardest not to smile.

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Fun with the Cousins

We had so much fun this past week having family come visit us! Emily’s family made the drive down for the 4th of July, and we loved spending a few days with them.  Emily and Jason are awesome parents who we look up to so much, and their kids are such a delight to be around.  B man and Chaz were thrilled to have their cousins here to play.  this was our set up in the backyard:

Ella, Sadie, and B Man reading books.  Such a sweet moment.

Fun at the intracoastal park:

Ending our time together with beach time, pizza, and ice cream:

Thank you for coming and visiting us!  We had such a fun time, and it meant so much to us that you made that trip to see us.  You guys are awesome!