First Day - July 2015



I didn't pick a word for 2015.

When January rolled around, I was still reeling.

From my brother dying.  From my marriage nearly falling apart.  From lost friendships and loneliness and the unfairness of it all.

Had I picked a word on January 1st, it wouldn't have been an accurate depiction of what was to come in the next year.

I had no idea.

That grief is like a rolling tide.  

That I'd feel Aaron in every breath I take and that missing him and loving him and being his little sister, well, those things never end.

That marriages can start again.

That you can wipe away the things of the past and move forward.  That continuing on isn't settling or giving in or resigning to mediocrity, but courageous and life giving and, holy cow, it's real love.

I still miss my friends and have realized that that part is just going to take more time.

We are nearly 7 months into 2015 and I have my word now.


And really, I think it'll just be my life word.

Because when I see where I am, when I look over at Andrew, when I see Josie becoming a lady, when I see Gabe's whole face light up with that big grin, it really is the only thing that comes to mind.

We have been redeemed.

Saved from error.

Each of us on our own and all of us together.

It's the story of our family.

And 5 years ago today, Gabe's redemption story crossed with the rest of ours and, man, I'm so glad it did.

This past week, as Andrew and I celebrated our anniversary on the beach, I couldn't help but go back to the day we got the call about Gabe.  We were doing the same thing, celebrating our anniversary at the beach.  With Josie and David and Amber and Olivia.

We were having the best week and I didn't want to leave.  I wanted to stay and be comfortable and stick to the original plan.  Which is very reflective of how I lived most of my life.

And then:


Well, Javon, then Von, then Baby V, then Gabriel, then Gabe.

Andrew has made quite a few rash decisions that didn't turn out well, but this one?  Telling me I was nuts and throwing all of our stuff in an expensive rental car and driving 8 hours through the night with our tired 3 year old to get back to Georgia and go pick up the boy that would become our son?

Well, he got that one right.

I remember the way he smelled that night.  His grey skin and seeing his scars for the first time.  I remember those deep eyes and fat wrists and, even if it took me awhile to let my guard down, falling in love.

Gabe.  The one I didn't see coming.


Happy Gotcha Day Sweet Gabriel Gordon.

the rolls!  i can't deal.


Sweet Summer

Ok, Ok.


I give up.

I'll quit claiming I'm going to blog more and just acknowledge that, in this particular time in my life, blogging on the regular just ain't my thing.

Life is good.

It feels active and balanced.  Both things I totally dig.

Our days are a steady mix of work and preschool and gymnastics and swim lessons.  Toss Andrew's much more relaxed off season schedule and a plethora of hours in the pool and you have a pretty good picture of what we've been up to.  It's the stuff Summer is made of and we are all enjoying the heck out of it.

However, I can't give up this space.  After all, I need a place to keep our memories.  And obviously you need to see my babies turning into real live humans right before our very eyes.

Shall we?

T-Ball ended.

My tiny slugger impressed us at every game.  Boyfriend has skills.  And that picture?  Heaven have mercy.

2nd Grade ended.

I went to her last day of school party and had so much fun.  However, I'm glad I didn't follow my initial life goal of being a teacher.  These kids were pumped.  And loud.  And goofy as all get out.  I would have lost my sanity.  God Bless the teachers.

We had a Grandparent Invasion.

Both kids were adequately spoiled and, a week after Andrew's parents left, I'm still undoing the rotteness.  They don't seem to get why I won't play Candyland 700 times in a row when Nana and Mae Mae did.

This one just because they sat in the same chair and did not (push, pinch, eyeroll, complain) about it.

Since T-Ball is over, Gabe picked up a new, less outdoorsy hobby.

Puzzles.  All day, everyday.  And for a kid that has very little ability to sit still, he can concentrate on one of these bad boys for a good hour.  That's gold around here.

He's also obsessed with school.

Or more like obsessed with his pretty teacher at school.  He has to do self prescribed "homework" on the days he doesn't go.  So glad we left the Screaming At The Door phase behind us.  

Josie is enjoying Summer Break.

She spends her days riding bikes with friends or playing with her entourage shown above.

She also started gymnastics.

She started with the goal of figuring out her cartwheel (which I still cannot do and am just a little (a lot) sad about), but was bitten by the bug pretty quick.  I see lots of gym time in our future.  

please note: neither of my children are in this picture but I wasn't willing to 
give up my spot in the shade to get them in a shot.

Both kids are taking swim lessons.  

Gabe because he is fearless even though he sinks like a rock.  One week in and he has it down.  Today he wore me and my mom out by jumping in and swimming side to side on repeat for hours.  I can't wait to be confident in his skills so I can resume my position on my float.

Josie swims like a fish and has for years, but she wants to join the swim team so she needs to learn the proper way to do each stroke.  She's picking it up super fast so we are hoping to get her on a team ASAP.  

Now we are caught up again.

Happy Summer, Y'all!