Saturday, February 28, 2009


So today I woke up and immediately started nesting. I never knew doing a load of laundry could make me so happy or bring such a huge smile to my face but I couldn't help but smile as I pulled each sweet, tiny little outfit out of the dryer. I am so my mother's daughter! I could just imagine our sweet baby girl wearing them all and how sweet she will look and how warm and cuddly she will feel. I just had to share these sweet photos of my first load of baby girl laundry.

Her bag is all packed and her nursery is all ready so now all we need is our sweet Ava Kate!

Our Dream Come True!

My dear friend Kimberly is a very creative and gifted photographer. Last week when she was in town she took some more maternity photos of us at Erinshire. Kimberly is also expecting a blessing this August!
I love this one because I also took my bridal portraits at Erinshire and have one sitting in my wedding dress in this same doorway to the chapel.
Loving our littles!
It won't just be the two of us much longer.
If you know me you know that I really do wish this for Ava Kate because there isn't much I love more than dancing!
I love how she captured the true joy I feel in my heart about my dream come true!
We are still in awe of God's miracle!
Our pitiful attempt at humor!

Friday, February 27, 2009

A Special Day!

Last Saturday my Papa and I finally got to have our date. He started taking me and my sister on dates back when we were little girls. I remember for our first date I wore a pretty little church dress and my mom even put my hair in rollers the night before. I was so excited to go on my first date. Papa asked me where I wanted to go eat and told me I could pick anywhere. I looked at him and said "Could we go to Arby's?" as if I was asking for him to take me to a five star restaurant. This time I got to treat. It was actually my Father's Day gift to Papa. Yes that is right we had our date about 8 months later. Between the two of us we had scheduled and rescheduled several times. I was so glad we finally got to have our date. It was a wonderful time of reminiscing and getting some good advice from Papa on becoming a parent for the first time. I have always looked up to him and my grandmother and they have both been such an example to me in their faith. They have set forth an amazing legacy for our family.
I really wanted to find a picture from our first date but haven't found it yet.

After lunch mom, grandmother and I continued to work on Ava Kate's quilt. Grandmother is the only veteran quilter of the three of us and that was a while back so we have really kind of been winging it but I think we have done pretty good for beginners. I do have to say that Nana has been the one to do most of the work especially last Saturday. Grandmother and I were there more for moral support. Thank you Nana and Grandmother!

Justin's mom also made Ava Kate a special blanket that she gave her at my baby shower. It is something she has been working on for several years. Thank you Grandma!

Friday, February 20, 2009

35 Week Update

I’m a little behind in getting this post done but it has been a pretty busy week. So Happy Belated Valentines to all of you! We enjoyed our last Valentine’s as a childless couple. My day started off with chocolate donuts so I knew it was going to be a good day! Justin and my dad both brought me pretty flowers and cards. I also got the new Fray cd which has been playing in my car over and over since I got it. We went to an early movie and dinner since I tend to get most uncomfortable in the evenings. Valentine’s Day also was the 5 year anniversary of when we first started trying to get pregnant so this one was definitely one with great reason to celebrate.

Sunday I had another baby shower that our Sunday school class threw for us. We have been so blessed by the friendships we have made in our class. We started going to that class when I first moved here even while Justin was still in Denton. They prayed us through him finding a job here, selling our house there, finding a house here, our possible adoption process, infertility treatments and now my pregnancy. Caroline was so sweet to offer her beautiful home for the shower. The food was delicious, fellowship was fun and again we were overwhelmed at how blessed we are. We came home with more wonderful things for our baby girl!

Monday I had an appt with Dr. Mascarro and she said everything was still looking great, heartbeat was strong, and I’m still measuring exactly where I should be. She said she would see me again in a couple of weeks and check to see if I had dilated. She also said they often like to induce IVF babies a week to week and a half early so it is very likely Ava Kate will be making her arrival sometime the week of March 16th just a few days after my birthday. I can’t think of a better birthday present! March 2nd we’ll have our last sonogram with the specialist and then see Dr. Mascarro that afternoon so we will probably know more after those two appointments. I think I’ve gotten past the point where I’m concerned about the labor and delivery part and I’m just so ready to have her here. We’ve got the carseat in the car, her bag is packed and mine is pretty much ready to go! We’ve been trying to walk as many evenings as we can in hopes that maybe it will help me start dilating. While I am getting a little uncomfortable mostly with aching ribs and heartburn I feel very blessed that I’m still sleeping pretty well at night, haven’t had any swelling and have really had a pretty easy pregnancy. Now I’m just praying for a delivery that is as smooth as my pregnancy!
35 Week Belly!

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Showered With Blessings

Yesterday we had our first baby shower and wow were we blown away! The shower was absolutely beautiful from Susan's beautiful home to the table and the cake and the flowers and all the lovely people that were there. I had eleven hostesses and they went above and beyond on putting together a perfect shower. There was an abundance of everything- food, friends and lots of wonderful things for Ava Kate in fact I think I opened presents for close to two hours! I was so excited to have several friends travel from out of town to be there and some even surprised me! Lots of people brought books instead of cards and wrote a sweet note to Ava Kate in the books and of course I had to fight back the tears as I read them. We were truly showered with many blessings and as I looked around at all the special people in the room I realized how blessed we are to have so many wonderful people in our lives that already love this little girl like we do!

Last night we piled everything in the dining room until we had time to find it all a home. Everytime I walked by I was amazed! Today after Justin's mom and aunt left to go back to Houston we got after it all and were able to find a home for pretty much everything. This afternoon my mom came by and helped me put away the last of it and believe it or not everything has a place.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Ava Kate's First Photo Shoot

Just One Year Ago

It was just one year ago today that we did our first IVF transfer. It was the end of a difficult week as we had learned our embryos were all poor quality. With the support and prayers of all of our family and friends though we still managed to have hope that God would do a miracle. A little over a week later we got our first negative pregnancy test. I can’t even begin to describe to you the heartache and grief that I felt. The next days were some of the darkest days of my life. I truly felt hopeless at moments and wondered how I would ever have the strength to continue to wait for you and endure the difficult days ahead. Thankfully I don’t have to count on my strength though and God did restore to me my hope and eventually he also gave me the strength to feel I could try again. I had no idea what God had in store for us in the coming months. Now I can rejoice in God’s plan because His plan was always you! He always knew you would be my baby even if it meant I had to endure years of waiting, crying, praying, watching many others have babies so easily and going through multiple unsuccessful procedures. The path I was on was always to you. While in those moments I wished I could have control and do things my way now I am so grateful He didn’t allow that because then it wouldn’t have been you, my miracle baby, my Ava Kate. I know eventually you may grow tired of me telling you that you are a miracle and such a special gift from God but I’ll never stop saying it. Getting to feel you growing inside of me has been one of the greatest joys I’ve ever known. People often stop and ask me if you are moving because when they walk by my office at work they always see my hand on my belly. Most of the times you aren’t but I just don’t want to miss anything though so most of the day my hand is there. I just want to experience every movement and flutter. It is the most amazing thing I’ve ever felt. Sometimes it still feels surreal that in just a matter of weeks you will be here and my life will forever be changed. My prayer for you is that you will be healthy and happy and know how deeply you are loved and most of all that you will know your heavenly father and experience his love and grace as I have. He has big plans for you Ava Kate and I look forwarding to watching them unfold. The verse I clung to over the past few years as I waited for you has always been Jer. 29:11- “For I know the plans I have for you declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future”-and I hope this verse will become as special to you as it has been to me.
I love you to the stars and back!


Wednesday, February 4, 2009

33 Week Update

Precious foot that I can't wait to kiss and squeeze!

Her sweet face! This picture doesn't do her justice on the actual sonogram it was so much more vivid.

We are down to 7 weeks now! We went to Robyn and Jerrod’s the weekend before last and enjoyed our last weekend getaway before Ava Kate’s arrival. As always Robyn cooked lots of delicious food- chicken fried steak, twice baked potatoes, fresh green beans, bread pudding, and she even made me chocolate donuts Sunday morning before we left. Saturday Justin watched the boys so Robyn and I could go enjoy a quiet lunch together and then we got in a little pampering with a much needed pedicure. It was the perfect last getaway! I have to share a couple of my “pregnant brain” or “blonde” moments with you. Robyn and Jerrod live on a ranch so when we were leaving to go to Fort Worth for the afternoon we had to drive over the cattle guards as we were leaving the ranch. Once I got over the first cattle guard I realized my car was not moving. I told Robyn my car won’t go and she said are you in neutral and I said no. I looked and there were no lights on or anything and my car was definitely still running. Then I suddenly realized much to my embarrassment that my foot was still on the brake. Wow!

Last Tuesday and Wednesday we got to spend the day at home thanks to the icy roads. I enjoyed getting the extra sleep and having some time to finish up one of my books. By Wednesday though Justin was about to start climbing the walls he had such a bad case of cabin fever. I think we were both ready to get back to work on Thursday. Thursday night we had the last of our childbirth classes which was pretty amusing. One of the local pediatricians spoke about newborns and she was quite a riot. Last Friday I enjoyed a girl’s night out with the high school girls from the bible study at church we used to lead. It is always fun to spend time with them and feel young again! They really wanted another slumber party but I told them I wasn’t sure I could handle that at this point in time. Saturday my mom, grandmother, sister and I all started working on a quilt for Ava Kate using the scrap fabric from the rest of her bedding. It was fun and also challenging trying to design the quilt and figure out exactly how to put it together. We got quite a bit accomplished for one afternoon though. Sunday we celebrated my Papa’s 75th birthday and then watched the Super Bowl with our Sunday School class. Needless to say things have been busy which has its positives and negatives. I enjoy staying busy because it makes times go faster but my body is having a harder time keeping up with my usual pace of life.

Monday we had not just one but two doctor’s appointments. First we had an appointment with the specialist for another sonogram. I always look forward to getting to see our sweet baby girl on that screen and yesterday was no different. Sunday night when we got home from the Super Bowl party I had a tiny bit of spotting so I mentioned this to the specialist even though I knew this could be normal and was probably nothing to be concerned about. He was very thorough in the sonogram and not only measured Ava Kate but also all of my fluids to be sure everything looked good. His words were “Your baby looks perfect, everything looks perfect.” What reassuring words to hear. He said she is measuring 4lbs 15oz and 17 inches long which he said is right on track for where she should be. We got to see her face so clear and vividly this time too which was absolutely amazing! It literally took my breath away. She was just so beautiful and so feminine looking. It made me even more anxious to see her in person! That afternoon I also had an appointment with Dr. Mascarro. I also told her about the spotting so she said she wanted to err on the cautious side and so she did a full exam and confirmed I am not dialated yet. She also decided to hook me up to the monitors for a while just be sure Ava’s heartrate was good and I was not having any contractions. Ava Kate has a tendency to kick anything that is on my belly and Monday that was the monitors they put on me. I am pretty sure she is going to be a little bit stubborn but then again they always say the apple doesn't fall far from the tree. For a while she was kicking at the monitor and so her heartrate was going up and down like that want it to but after a while it started staying pretty flat. The nurse came in and said it looks like that baby has gone to sleep. She left the room and came back with a cup which leads to my second “pregnant brain” story. When she came in with the cup she said I’m going to see if a glass of cold water will help wake her up. She then proceeded to hand me the water at which point I said “Oh you want me to drink the water?” She said well yes what did you think I wanted you to do with it and I said I thought you were going to pour it on my belly. My mom and the nurse both got a good kick out of that and said we needed to be sure and write that one down. I don’t know if pouring the water on my belly would have worked as well or not but drinking it definitely woke Ava up and her heartrate was all over the place after that. After probably 45 minutes of monitoring they said everything looked great and I was on my way to get the last of my bloodwork. I really had not been that concerned after the spotting but I have to say I really appreciate the fact that both doctors were so thorough and cautious and after both of those exams I left with an even stronger peace about the health of our baby girl!