Monday, December 07, 2009

before Thanksgiving, Hannah and I did alot of prep work together. the first of many, i hope!

this little guy is enjoying his tummy time more. he's so much more content that he isn't that motivated to go anywhere, like hannah was. he'll just sit in his swing forever or lay on a blanket not really moving. but he is holding his head up better.

helping decorate, of course.

yes, what you saw on the news was correct. we had snow last week. very strange. seeing as how this was charlie's first snowfall, i wanted to commemorate it.

salon a la daddy. i'm not sure why Hannah was getting star treatment, but they both seem to be having fun :-)

now don't laugh mom! we really have been having some cold days. below freezing, no. but cold to us. and we've had alot of outdoor activities. that i neglected to take pictures of. i know. i'm sorry. we had a great time at our sunday school christmas party on friday (sans kiddos). it's been just over a year that we've been here, and we really feel connected and at home now. then we went to the children's parade in downtown, like last year.

Hannah's been having a wonderful time with her advent presents from my mom, she opens one every sunday of advent so she can start learning now why we're celebrating. she knows quite a bit of the story now. I feel like i've made up my own little catechism, i seem to ask her the same questions each time we talk about it. like why did Jesus come? she asks me "why" all the time now. "why is charlie hungry" "why is it cold" why are you washing that" why why why!

she talks SO much. it still kind of baffles me, the things she says and how much she picks up and remembers. i was sorting through our winter gear and came across a few hats meghan let me borrow, a few years ago, i think :-). she picked up one and said, "this hat is so pretty. i look cute in it. this hat will keep me warm!"

patrick planned a special night for two people (hint: it wasn't the above two people), of watching White Christmas, drinking mulled cider he made and eating kettle corn. alas, who comes waltzing out of her bedroom but our wide awake little munchkin? so patrick let her stay up for a little while and participate. who knows, it may be her first memory :-)

You see our whole family in church together for a very special occasion: our baby dedication. baby and toddler, i guess. we did them together. we had a special baby dedication/children's baptism service sunday night, and i was holding back tears from start to finish. If i get that emotional when someone else's kid gets baptized, what am i going to do when it's my own?

I would say mine are the cutest ones, but those are my friends' babies up there too :-)

We keenly felt the absence of our families. Sometimes living so far away is harder than others.
He prayed a blessing over each child.
Our senior pastor is in green, and children's pastor in red. (for those of you who notice small details, i realize Charlie's bottom half doesn't match. he doesn't have black pants, sorry!)

As those of you who have been blessed with children know, words cannot begin to express what my babies mean to me. to us. (sorry patrick :-). I don't want to assume that everyone is familiar with the whole baby dedication thing, so i'll give you a rundown.
Patrick and I were both blessed to grow up in homes where we always attended church and the Bible was taught and we were encouraged to follow in our parents' footsteps. But when it came right down to it, the decision was ours to make. Our parents' influence over us was great, to be sure, but our backgrounds, our physical presence on Sundays, our own dedications when we were children, even having a pastor for a father, none of that remotely affects our personal relationships with God. We each had to make our own commitment, which we did as children. So the baby dedication wasn't deciding anything for Hannah or Charlie, it was more about us as parents. An opportunity for us to make a public covenant between us parents and God, primarily, and also with the church body and our extended family, who all play a role in our children's development. An opportunity for us to surrender our children to God, acknowledge them as His, and commit to raising them as such. It is our profound hope that they will follow in our footsteps and both decide to accept Jesus Christ as their own Saviour and Lord when they are old enough to understand that they need a Saviour. We are completely dependent on God's wisdom to raise them up in a way that honours Him, and hopefully prepare them to be used by Him to change the world and further the Kingdom.
Then after that time, we had a special celebratory family dinner at macaroni grill! and we did really miss our families. :-(