Wednesday, April 29, 2015

hey, coach.

Ten years ago, I was the proudest Diamond Darling at Hillcrest High School because I had the cutest boyfriend on the baseball team. I would travel all over the Upstate several times a week just to watch him play, and I was especially loud when he was in the lineup as the pitcher. I would stay up late the night before games to make cakes + bags filled with his favorite candies + cookies + signs to hang on the fence at the entrance to the field, and I would wait for an hour most nights just to get a quick, post-game hug from a stinky boy that I wouldn't be able to see again for another eight hours (oh, the heartache!).
Now, TJ is teaching at the same school where we first got googly-eyed over each other, we have a baby boy that looks just like him, and he just finished up his first season as an assistant coach for the Bryson Middle School baseball team. Things have changed, no doubt about it, but one thing will never, ever change: our story is my favorite story. I didn't make him a sign or bring him a cake decorated like a baseball this time around, but I think he enjoyed seeing (and, let's be honest, hearing) B + me in the stands more than he ever enjoyed those things. I, for one, loved watching him bring his skill set + love of the game + support of the kids together as one out on the field. The final game that we went to was played at the field formerly home to the Greenville Braves, and it was pretty incredible to watch him coach at the same field that I watched him play at when we were both just a couple of seventh graders. And, to top it off, the Bulldogs won!
Not only did I have the most handsome baseball-playing boyfriend ten years ago, now I can say that I have the most handsome baseball-coaching husband today. I'm so proud to call him mine-all-mine!

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

walking for babies.

A little over a month ago, I posted about our commitment to walking for the March of Dimes. Saturday was the big day, and our team was so dedicated to the cause that we braved the cool, rainy weather with our best walking shoes on! Hundreds of people were standing at the starting line proudly holding their umbrellas + anxiously awaiting the nine o'clock walk time, and no one seemed to mind the puddles at all. It was beyond humbling to support this cause with my newly-born baby boy as a member of our team, and I look forward to making this an annual event. Walking for babies + their families with Team Oaks of Righteousness provided the sunshine that was lacking that morning, and God was faithful to answer our prayers to stop the downpour that had been predicted the entire week leading up to the event. About five minutes into the walk, the rain was no longer falling + all the umbrellas were put away. Not even dreary weather can hold us down, y'all!

Our team raised a total of $580 for the March of Dimes, and our goal is going to be even higher next year. We, also, hope to have more people step up + join our team next year, too! This organization helps both mommies + babies remain as healthy as possible both during pregnancy + after the birth of a child/children, specifically babies who are born prematurely. I, personally, know many families who have kiddos who were born before their due dates, and I'm sure you do, too. We're going to do this each year for them. We want them to know that they are not alone + that this community grows in love and support of them each year. On top of the meaningful aspect of the event, it's also a lot of fun! Not only will Braxton be walking next year (say whaaaat?), but he will also be much more capable of understanding more about the world around him. Teesh + I want to introduce him to events like this, to explain why so many people are gathered together, and to help create a deep compassion for others within him. As parents, teaching our kiddos about love -  not just as a word or feeling, but as an action - is one of the most important things we can do.
We wear green to point towards growth, we donate to support research + healthy, full-term pregnancies, and we walk so that they may be called oaks of righteousness (via Isaiah 61:3). Won't you join us next year?

Sunday, April 26, 2015

earth day.

This year's Earth Day was spent mostly outside walking the streets of our little neighborhood while pushing my itty bitty one in the stroller that morning + laying on Teesh's blanket in our front yard that afternoon. It was so much fun to watch his little eyes look all around at the bright colors that were before him, and I couldn't resist becoming the mamarazzi so that I could savor that precious day forever. He smiled his usually smiles, laughed his usual laughs, stole my heart over + over again every time his eyes locked to mine, and reconfirmed (for the millionth time) that motherhood is the best journey. Without even saying a word, he tells me the most beautiful stories about this wonderful life that I get to call mine.
I hope your Earth Day was full of as much thankfulness as ours was!

Friday, April 24, 2015


Last week, I shared words + pictures of the cutest bowtie-and-suspender-wearing kiddo on the block, but what I didn't share was my excitement + anticipation during the months when I only dreamed of what he would look like wearing this specific outfit. My heart swelled as I opened the gift and discovered the adorable get-up inside, and I immediately made plans for it to be worn on a special day. It's hard to believe that it has been six months since I held this outfit in my arms, and it's even harder to believe that it has been worn by the little one that we longed to meet for so many months. I think he must have known how excited I was for him to wear it, because he was making faces like his mommy the whole time the camera snapped away during our little photoshoot. Maybe it's because he hangs out with me all day, but I love that he is easily entertained + excited about the smallest of things just like I am. He's even a professional at the mouth-wide-open smile already!
I thought I loved the little boy growing inside of me on that October morning, but it pales in comparison to how much I love him today.

Thursday, April 23, 2015

a sweet reunion.

It had been a loooooong time since the four of us had been together in the same room at the same time, and our dear Sam took the initiative to fix that problem. This past Saturday night, we all attended a women's event at Pelham First Baptist Church called Sold Out Sisters. Each table had a theme (ours was orange + purple in true Clemson fashion, of course), and we were served a delicious dinner with yummy dessert that followed. There were a lot of heavy hearts in the room that night, but the presence of the Lord was there, too. It was so much fun to hang out with these girls and to be reminded of both the power of the Gospel + the need for the Gospel, and I really hope it's not another decade before we all hang out again.

Middle school friendships are wacky and weird, as you well know, but these three girls were my friends when I didn't think a soul in the world cared about me. They'll always have a special piece of my heart, and I can assure you that I will never forget how they drew near to me when most others went running. Whether you're in middle school or enjoying life in a retirement home, I believe that friendships are precious tools that God uses to show us how much we mean to Him. May we never lose sight of the beautiful gift of having a friend, and may we also be intentional about always being a friend, too.
"You can't stay in the corner of the Forest waiting for others to come to you. You have to go get them sometimes."
-Winnie the Pooh

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

growing baby b.

In honor of this little guy meeting Nonnie for the first time, we made sure that he was dressed in his Sunday's best. What we weren't prepared for, however, was the fact that the outfit we had originally counted out was the one that fit him best. Why did we count it out, you ask? Because both the shirt AND shorts were sized for a six month-old. Nope, this mama is not ready for her three month old to be double the size of the average baby his age. Those crossed hands coupled with that sweet face and chubby body are getting bigger by the minute, and I am so thankful to have a front row seat to watching it all happen. He already makes the ladies go googly-eyed, especially this one!
My goodness, just look at that face!

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

baby marshall.

Remember that time dozens of my friends are either pregnant or have just had a baby? Well, folks, it is true, and I would be lying if I denied how excited it makes me! This past Saturday, friends + family gathered together to celebrate Mary Beth and her soon-to-be baby boy, and it was pretty great to have so many of my long-time favorite people in one house for a couple of hours. It's always fun to catch up with people you haven't seen in a while, and this sweet shower proved the validity of that truth. We are all so very excited for Marshall Anderson Cooper to make his debut sometime over the next ten weeks, and I'm already looking forward to play dates. Boys are the obvious theme of this baby season, which means that Braxton will soon have an entire team of little ones to play with! There are a few baby girls in the mix as well, so the team even has a few cheerleaders, too. What's not to love about that?
Mary Beth was + is stunning, and that little one growing inside of her will make her feel loved like never before soon enough. Motherhood looks great on this sassy lady already!

Monday, April 20, 2015

five generations.

Yesterday afternoon was bright + beautiful in spite of the dark clouds that hung above our heads. The rain stopped long enough for us to hang out on the back patio at The Springs with Nonnie for a little while, and I love this special memory more than words can adequately express. She and Papa were the ones who instilled a deep love of both Christ + family into the Phillips clan, and it was the biggest honor to introduce her to her great-great-grandson on this Sunday that was filled with anticipation + excitement. My heart was beating out of my chest as she held him + gave him kisses, and it was a memory I'll never forget. It's not every day that the oldest member of the family + the youngest member of the family are in the same still frame with so many years between them, and floods of memories filled my mind as we stood there with smiles on our faces. I'm grateful to be a part of a family where we treasure each other + are intentional about gathering together, and we owe it to this beautiful lady + her husband who has planted those seeds in all of us.

Nonnie has touched more lives than any of us could ever keep up with, and now I can say that Braxton is on her list. Oh, what joy is still pulsing through this mama's heart! I hope I live to be ninety-four (almost ninety-five) years old, and that the people I love will tell me of all the happy memories my life has consisted of if my mind tries to erase them from my memory. I hope they'll tell me of this sweet afternoon first.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

mister bowtie.

Sunday was a special day filled with lots of special things so we had to make sure our little one was dressed in his best, of course! This was Braxton's fourth Sunday at church, and it was also my first day back on stage leading worship with the band. Well, it was my first official morning back, at least. I maaaay have jumped the stage on our first Sunday back - with permission, of course. Anyway, TJ was on daddy duty all morning, and he overcame the stress of dressing + driving a three month-old without mommy quite impressively. Our dear friend, Chris, turned another year older younger AND the team that recently returned from Haiti shared their stories with those that gathered with us at both services that morning, too. To top it off, we celebrated Cara's birthday that afternoon, and then  dined + fellowshipped with our community group that evening. Like I said, there were lots of reasons to celebrate this Sunday funday!

So, without further hesitation, I present to you the cutest baby boy wearing the cutest bowtie + suspenders you have ever seen. His adorable little personality matched his adorable little outfit quite perfectly!

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

cara turns four.

It seems like it was just yesterday that we were celebrating Cara's first birthday, and now she's already four years old. In honor of such a wonderful day, the whole family gathered to eat pizza + eat cake and ice cream + watch her eyes light up with every present she opened. It is so fun having so many cousins to watch grow up, and it is extra fun having another generation now with us to celebrate. That's right, folks, Braxton has taken our family to a whole new level - one that makes me significantly less important as I learned from everyone at the party. Nevertheless, I'm thrilled to see him grow up with all the little ones of the Phillips clan, and to be passed around + loved on by everyone.

Have you ever seen such a pretty four year old? Just look at those precious curls!
Happy birthday, Cara!
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...