I love this season

I love this season
"For everything there is a season..." Eccl. 3:1

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Happy 1st Birthday, Caleb

Dear sweet Caleb,

This year has been incredible! 

Grateful for that unexpected call on your birthday Aug. 12, 2010 that started our forever family journey.

The first time I held you in my arms

First time in Daddy's arms

You spent 10 days in the NICU and then....it was time to go home with Mommy and Daddy!
this is the face you made when we asked u if u were ready to go home
Our "tiny miracle" weighed 4.10

riding out of the hospital in your big car seat

You were social from the start. You love to smile at people.  It brings our hearts such joy to see you smile and for people to smile back at you.

Bringing you into our home was an answer to many prayers. 
 Psalm 113:9, "He gives the childless woman a family, making her a happy mother, Praise the Lord!"

He added a beautiful arrow to our quiver:

"...Children born to a young man are like arrows in a warriors hands.  How joyful is the man whose quiver is full of them..." Psalm 127:4-5

We kept the nursery ready for your arrival...we were "preparing for rain."  Look what God did!

The Lord filled our hearts and our nursery.  This pic was taken in your crib. 

Our prayer has always been that you'd have a heart like Caleb. 

"He has a different spirit; he follows me passionately.  I'll bring him into the land he scouted and his children will inherit it."  Numbers 14:24 (the Message)

We pray this verse for you often, that you'd be a mighty warrior, a Christ follower, from an early age with an endless passion for the Lord.  That His love, grace, and mercy will draw you near to His heart, compel you, and drive you to share the gospel in a dark world.  That you'd love Truth and that you'd desire to obey His Word. Praying that you make wise choices based on the Truth.  That you would fear God alone and not seek to please people. That you will look beyond impossible and allow God to do great things in and through you as you yield to Him.  Praying you'll be strong in Him and very, very bold for Him. Praying you'll always know of our love for you.  How grateful we are to be your parents.

And look at your in your nursery now, at one year old, standing up! 

So... a quick recap of your first year by picture....I wish  I could add them all...but here are a few of our favs, Caleb:

This is how you spent your one month birthday.

What a joy to watch you sleep...especially like Daddy...with one foot out of the covers.

At 3 months, this was your favorite pose.
1st CandyFest....your Nana made your costume...you were a handsome lil lion

Your 1st Thanksgiving!
"Shout for joy to the LORD, all the earth. Worship the LORD with gladness; come before him with joyful songs. Know that the LORD is God. It is he who made us, and we are his; we are his people, the sheep of his pasture. Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name. For the LORD is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations."  Psalm 100:1-5

Our first Christmas together.  You loved the Christmas Tree.

Your favorite Christmas present was your wagon!  You love to ride in the wagon!
I was so happy when you could sit up in the bumbo long enough to stroll you in wagon around the neighborhood.  You loved it, I loved it, and the neighbors would always wave, smile, and sometimes even stopped to talk to you.  I had prayed on numerous occasions for God to bring you into our lives on that route; what a blessing to praise him and turn those times into praying over your life.

One Dec. 30th, we were able to return to your birthplace and finalize your adoption!  It was a great day!

In February, you wore your 1st sports coat

We committed before the church to raise you as unto the Lord...acknowledging you are His
"For this boy I prayed, and the Lord has given me my petition, which I asked of Him. So, I have also dedicated him to the Lord; as long as he lives he is dedicated to the Lord." 1 Sam. 1:27-28

Parent/child dedication was such an emotional day...because we were able to celebrate with our Sherwood family God's faithfulness to bring you into our lives.  Your Sherwood family loves you, Caleb.  They have prayed for you before you were born; they continue to pray for you.  We are blessed with a praying church family.  (I loved that while you were being introduced to the family, your feet were going 90 miles an hour).

You have learned soooo much this year!  From opening your eyes to cruising around the furniture...I have loved being with you every step of the way.

My most favorite Mother's Day 2011

Your 1st beach trip! 

You love your daddy!  And your Daddy loves you. 

First youth camp

This year was filled with firsts; too many to name, but all incredibly etched in my mind.  You were a little learning and growing machine this year. 

We went a lot of neat places together.  You even got to visit both sets of your grandparents at their houses...one you took an airplane to and even got pilot's wings.  The other we drove to Florida to see...and you swam for the very 1st time in a pool.  Your grandparents love you so very much.  I am working on a page with pictures of you and them so you will always be able to see the love they have for you in their eyes.  This page will also include your great grandparents, which you are blessed to have.  I also hope to put pictures of you and your extended family on another page.  You have a wonderful extended family that have also enjoyed watching you grow this year.

I have learned this year that the old saying holds true, "time flies when you are having fun." Before I knew it our family was gathered to celebrate your first birthday at our house!  The baby was gone and the pre-toddler had come.  At your party you enjoyed the company of your family and loved the chocolate birthday cake; it's the 1st thing you fed yourself!

Caleb, You have brought so much laughter to our hearts and lives.  As we look toward each new day, our prayer for our family is found in Deuteronomy 6:4-9 which reads:

"Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the door frames of your houses and on your gates."

I thank God for your life and how He brought you into our lives.  Celebrating God's gift of your life to us while we walk this earth.  What a special boy you are.  Jesus loves you dearly.  He has a wonderful plan for your life.  Seek Him, son.

Caleb Elliot Grubbs,

We love you!

Happy 1st birthday!

Monday, August 1, 2011

The joys of diapers & infant car seats

 One Sunday in May of 2010 Sherwood students, parents, and student workers at Sherwood surprised us with a baby shower.  It was an awesome surprise; a themed shower...diapers, wipes, and car seat!  The students purchased our infant travel system stroller/car seat (the big blue package in the middle of the stage) and a TON of diapers and wipes.

We loaded the diapers into the nursery closet.  This pic doesn't even do justice to what the closet actually held...it spans further to the right/left and goes up even higher than the picture could capture. 

Not until today, August 1, 2011, only 11 days shy of Caleb's 1st birthday, did we finish up using the very last diaper.  The diapers and wipes were such a HUGE BLESSING!  Thank you, thank you, thank you, again for diapering Caleb!  We truly appreciate it!  Here's the after shot! 

Let me give a shout out to the Lord, whose timing is always perfect...the Publix baby diaper sale ran last week, and I bought my first thing of non-preemie diapers for a great deal with my store and manufacturer coupons in preparation of this moment (when the lifetime supply of diapers would run out).  After my first diaper purchase, I realized how much money we were able to save all last year thanks to the generosity of sweet people!  Thanks y'all!

As for the travel system we received, this was little four pound Caleb's 1st ride in his infant car seat on his way to the car.  He was wearing his "tiny miracle" outfit. 

Again, just shy of a year, I recently started noticing signs that my baby was moving into the pretoddler phase as it began getting harder to put him into the infant car seat without bonking his head; even his legs dangled over the edge.  Did I mention...he was heavy to try and tote in it as well. 

Closing the chapter on Caleb's 1st year is bittersweet.  I recently washed the padding of the infant car seat to store it for the next baby Grubbs; there was a lot of finality in that process, no more baby Caleb, and welcome pretoddler Caleb. 

We had so many precious memories in the infant seat, from bringing him home to the hotel from the hospital, to crossing into our home state with him, bringing him into our home for the first time-the infant car seat is filled with memories of many firsts.  We also put a lot of miles on that infant seat, from flying to see grandparents, to youth trips, or day trips to visit daddy at work...

It was really cute when Caleb learned how to peek around the car seat to look at the driver....

And I loved when he learned to find me in the mirror...I'd turn around to see his beautiful smile!  (I took this pic from the front seat of the car).

This year has been priceless.  Firsts...I treasure them!  I am extremely grateful for Caleb's precious life that we've been entrusted to raise on this side of eternity.  There are so many joys found in being Caleb's mom..I love them all! 

Recently, rather than deleting a particular email from Toys R Us, I opened it...to my surprise I found that the car seat that I'd heard so many good things about was on sale....a rare thing for this brand...which is normally excluded from coupons, etc....and it was just in time for our purchase...another PRAISE the Lord!  I LOVE His timing!  And His Spirit's leading me to open that email! 

Look at the big boy loving his new seat!  Such a welcome site!  A beautiful new season!  He couldn't stop smiling from the time we put him in it.  I am sure it was a mixture of being able to ride facing forward, being able to see us, as much as it was probably a lot more comfortable than being stuffed into a tiny infant seat as a growing boy. 

I look forward to all that God has in store in the days to come and the memories to be made in the big boy car seat! 

Again, I am reminded of the following verses:

"He settles the barren woman in her home as a happy mother of children. Praise the LORD." Psalm 113:9

Ephesians 3:20, "Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us."

He is so good, y'all!  Mountaintops and valleys!