She walked down the aisle and called his name.

He turned, unable to utter words, but a smile that said more than words could ever capture.

He wrapped his arms around her and there, in this quiet moment, the world stopped.  There, at the altar, they prayed and thanked God for this day and this moment.

This sacred ground…

An hour after their vows had been exchanged and the church guests had left for the reception, I walked back to the nursery of the church and found the two of them.  I watched as they practiced their first dance in the midst of baby toys.  I lifted my camera to my eyes and tears accompanied as I prayed that they would never forget this moment…twirling around the nursery room with clouds painted on the walls, laughing and grateful to have begun their life as husband and wife.  And there it was again: sacred ground.

Karalyne and Reed, your day and your love will forever be written on my heart.  Your friends…your family…your love and your humility will forever be a part of my life and I am better for it.  Thank you for giving us the privilege of documenting this day for you.  We love you…

 

When family formals leave you all misty-eyed…

Also – I am NEVER getting over this little flower girl…Grandma couldn’t make it – so they FaceTime’d her.  Once again – teary eyes…Let’s just pause and talk about their GORGEOUS RECEPTION.  SOOOOOOOO stunning…I’m not crying…you’re crying…Are there a million dancing pictures?  Yes…  Yes, there are.  Because I couldn’t resist.If you’d like to see more from their wedding, CLICK HERE to view their slide-show.

 

And here are some of the amazing vendors…

Dress Designer: Pronovias
Bridesmaid’s Dress Designer: Revelry

Sometimes, there are people who have the gift of making you feel home.  They create a space where you can immediately be known and loved.  And the Theobald’s are those people.

From watching their giggles when mom and dad got the chance to sneak up on them, to the moment when their middle man looked up at his mom and said, “Now I get to tell you something I like about you!  Mom, you’re BEAUTIFUL” – I just couldn’t thank God enough for them.

Thank you, Theobald family for braving the attack mode mosquitoes on the most imperfect of nights – all to make it stunning and sacred just because you were there.

And PS: if you haven’t connected with the ever so amazing Peg over on her blog, let me just go ahead and introduce you – CLICK HERE.  You’re going to love her.

 

To see more from our time together, just CLICK HERE to view their slideshow.

Laura and Mac – I remember the early days of parenthood.   The lack of sleep.  The overflowing diaper bag.   The entire encyclopedia of differing opinions on how to BEST raise your little one.  The joy of it all and the desire to JUST FREEZE TIME.  (After one really good night of sleep though…)

Just in case you were not aware – you are doing a BEAUTIFUL work.  You are LOVING your girl to the brim.  You SEE her.  For the joy that she is, hilarious facial expressions and all.  And you will keep SEEING her.  And reminding her all of her days of WHO she truly is.

That’s the work.  And you all are doing such a magnificent job.

Little Miss E…one day, you’ll be a grown woman.  You’ll hold these images, and you’ll know the full story: your parents loved you with their entire hearts.  They always have.  And they always will.

I’ll treasure our time together ALL MY DAYS, love.  Every last giggle.  Every last skeptical glance.  And every last moment where your heart filled with so much joy, your face couldn’t begin to hide it.

To see more from our time together, CLICK HERE to see their slide-show.

 

My mornings while Ted traveled often looked the same:

Wake up.  Waffles into toaster.  Grab milk. Fill cereal bowls.  Make eggs. Wake sleepy children using silly names for added effect/chutzpah and just to keep myself entertained.

This particular morning started like any other.  I checked all the boxes on my task list that would make it possible to get my daughter to school by 7 am for chorus.

She grabbed her backpack and we started for the van, confident and proud of our work that would get her to chorus on time.

As we approached the last hurdle – the hallway out to the van, my eyes noticed a little lizard on the wood floor next to the garage door.  “That’s weird. I don’t remember the kids having any lizard toys… I wonder when that joined our home.”

As I left my eyes there and pondered how another toy was added to our home without my knowledge, the toy MOVED.  This led to the stunning realization that this was NOT a toy. It was a real lizard. IN MY ENTRANCEWAY.

At this point, I was left with three potential options.

  1. Ignore said lizard due to our time constraints and hope it remained in that one particular spot by the time I was back from dropping Hannah off.
  2. Try to grab said lizard though my coordination before coffee is less than desirable.
  3. SCREAM for my son to come and be the hero.  This mama is not going to win in a showdown with a lizard.

I chose option three obviously.

Jayden (the hero) came bursting around the corner ready to serve in whatever way he needed as he sensed the ABSOLUTE desperation in my voice.

“Lizard!!!!!  Get it.” (My ability to speak in complete sentences was hindered greatly due to the hour of the morning and the nature of the event.  And the lack of coffee…)

My son went to work while I watched the entire escapade and took over role of head cheerleader/shouter of obvious directions. This lizard seemed to have been trained in the art of both the zig and the zag.

Luckily, my son was no quitter.  He valiantly chased the lizard and cornered him. After the high-speed chase around our front hallway, he proved victorious in obtaining the lizard.  All was well. And the lizard was so adorable when such capable hands held him.

But this momentary reprieve was destined to end.  Because all of this hulabaloo had stirred the attention of my 4 year old.  This precious child then decided his entire life was OVER if he did not get to hold said intruder.  His trail of tears indicated imminent death from lack of holding the lizard. Cries fell upon our ears and we all decided that we would do whatever it took to MAKE IT STOP.  In this particular case, that meant we handed this leaping lizard over to the adorable yet unreliable grip of my 4 year old. His tears ended, a smile took over his face as his hands grasped our new green friend.  But this crafty lizard saw his opportunity amidst our stupidity and leapt for his life. Our precious moment turned into a mad scramble with kids running, voices raised, legs flying and the second rescue mission commencing.

As my eyes widened to take in the ridiculous nature of this scene, Jayden lifted his cupped hands to reveal the rascally lizard.  After goodbyes and soft kisses were shared, the perpetrator was released into the wild. My daughter and I rushed to the van amidst hysterical laughter as we made our way to chorus – one lizard lighter and one late excuse richer…

Your mom and dad knew before anyone else…you were coming.  You were growing in their hearts at such a rapid rate that they could feel the transformation piercing into every portion of them.  It just took time to find you.

They filled out forms.  They showed up for interviews.  And you grew.  And grew.

One day the phone call came.  You were HERE.  It was time to meet mom and dad.

Bags were packed, prayers were prayed, hands trembled with excitement and a million other emotions because YOU were waiting for them.  You, who had grown in their hearts to the point they that they might explode, WERE HERE.

Little Miss C and Little Mr. A, may you know that even with all the risks and fears of utter heartbreak – your mom and dad would go through it again – a million times over.  They have loved you long before you took your first breath.  And they will walk you through the good and the hard and the everything in between that is life.  Because love walks us all the way home…

 

 

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