Simply beautiful...

Simply beautiful...

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Precious Baby Boys...

It's 7am and the house is quiet. I am wrapped in a blanket and reading a blog. Bentley is wrapped up too and sleeping in his bouncy seat next to my chair. He is so beautiful and peacefully looking when he sleeps. I don't think there are many things more pure in life than watching a little baby sleep... I am struck by God's precious gift to us through Jesus when I look at our baby son. Recently, I have known or heard of several families who have had great heartbreak in regards to their own babies. As a mom, my heart aches and breaks for parents like this because I can't comprehend it.

I just read a blog that I have recently been following. I don't know this family... the blog was sent to me by a friend, but I cry most everytime I read it. I cry because my heart aches for this family, especially after just having our own newborn son. Their 2 week old son, Samuel, is struggling to hang on to life as the parents are praying like neverbefore and sharing their faith with others. No one would ever dream of this situation for their child, but I hope that I would handle it like them... with an unending trust in God and His goodness. Please read about the Parkins family and pray for them.

Reading about Samuel and remembering all the recent pains of my friends, reminds me that Christ experienced the same heartbreak. He watched his son, Jesus, suffer and die in the most brutal way... and He did it willingly... for us.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Our First Few Months in Oregon

I have to admit that I haven't published any videos of our family until now due to the fact that I couldn't figure out how to do it! Now that I have conquered my lack of knowledge of using YouTube, I can share what I've been working on. Since Harper's birth, I have tried putting together a "music video" (if you will) of milestones or of a hand full of months... I put this video together in order to record our first few months in Oregon (August through the beginning of November). I hope you enjoy seeing what we've been up to. But I must say, it's LONG... but there... you've been warned!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Holiday Treats

I've always said in regards to food, "everything in moderation". The same is true when it comes to all of the treats displayed in front of us over Thanksgiving and Christmas. I absolutely love the holidays. I love the smells and tastes, the music, the family get togethers, the cooking and baking... I could go on and on. For Thanksgiving this year, I decided I wanted to make a pumpkin dessert that wasn't the traditional pie. Don't mistake me, I love pumpkin pie! But there's something to be said for adventure. Besides, I knew our family get together would include several pies. If my dessert went awry, we'd have plenty of back up options.

For my recent birthday, I received a copy of the cookbook, "Barefoot Contessa Back to Basics" by Ina Garten. As soon as I saw the recipe for her "Pumpkin Roulade with Ginger Cream", I knew that was my challenge... to make a rolled up cake! I had seen these cakes in the past and thought, "I'm not that good of a baker to make one of those... isn't that when you pay someone else to do it?". Well, with a little help from my sister and a couple of new half sheet pans, I found that these rolled up cakes are a facade... meaning that they appear to be much more difficult to make than they really are. I was delighted that our cake turned out beautifully and tasted even better!
When I knew that I'd be making such a "pretty" dessert for the adults, I decided I wanted to have something special for the kids to enjoy. I've had a few friends in the past who made chocolate and candy dipped pretzel rods at their parties, and I always loved them. So, it was an easy conclusion as to what to make for the kiddos. I bought two bags of pretzel rods (so many are already broken when you buy them), one package of chocolate chips, and used sprinkles and chopped honey roasted peanuts that my mom had on hand at her house. I melted the chocolate and began dipping and covering the pretzels. All I can say about these is that they are EASY. The kids loved them and even left a few for the adults to enjoy!
These desserts inspired me so much that I am planning on making my own version of this cake for Christmas... I'm thinking a chocolate roulade with citrus cream. I'll post pictures if it turns out.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Our Sweet Bentley

I cant believe it's been nearly two months since we brought Bentley home from the hospital... he is now 7 weeks old and we are loving getting to know our son! I feel like we are finally past that stage where you don't really know your baby and it often feels awkward. We finally know what all his different cries mean, that he prefers to be swaddled when he's tired and we can always count on a smile from him when we tickle his cheeks. At this point, Jeremy and I still consider Bentley to be a very mellow boy. He is often happy just hanging out in his bouncy seat, swing or in our arms without a peep. We are certainly glad he doesn't spend most of his day crying, since the nurses who helped delivered him informed us he was born with a 3-month-old cry... the boy is LOUD!

It is so special at this early stage of his life to feel incredibly connected to him as his mom. As is natural, it's been difficult for Jeremy to feel as close to each of our kids while they're newborns... mostly due to the fact that he's not the one feeding them and the rest of the time they sleep. Since Bentley has been much more alert and smiley as of the past weeks, I've been able to witness Jeremy's bond with him grow... and I do say... my boys are so cute together!
I feel incredibly blessed to have such a healthy and happy baby boy. I was just driving in my car today with the kids and as I glanced back at them I thought, "my dream has come true". When I was a little girl playing with her dolls, I always dreamed that someday I'd have a car with the back row filled with babies... that makes me smile.

Bentley is absolutely precious and has melted my heart to pieces. I can't wait to continue to watch his personality grow and help shape him into a young man of character who loves the Lord. I love you my sweet boy!
Harper has been eager to share her toys with her brother... it'll be just a bit longer until he can really play with you sweetie, but we appreciate the gesture!
Jeremy and his Dad (OoOo) with Bentley on Thanksgiving.
Getting some love and quality time from his Nana.
OoOo getting his quality time too!
Back at it... Me and my boy after our first "official" run together. Boy was it COLD!
Brother and sister... She just couldn't keep his attention.
We had a blast giving both our kids their first bath together... Harper is turning into quite the little helper with Bentley and we love it!