Saturday, January 16, 2010

Lord, Haste the Day When Our Faith Shall be Sight!

3 years ago today, I spent the first night away from my sweet Robbie. We were together every day and night, most every minute, for almost 20 months.


As I drove away from the hospital that night, I knew my God was in control. But I also knew that He better be bigger than I first thought if we were going to survive this tragedy.

He is.

I Miss

~your big blue eyes
~your round cheeks
~your smell
~hearing you say mama and dadoo
~watching you run to the door to greet daddy
~you climbing into bed with me in the early morning
~watching you play outside
~reading your favorite books -- Are You My Mama?, ABCs, Green Eggs & Ham, Bible storybook
~hearing you pray
~singing to you. I always sang: "You are my sunshine, my only sunshine. You make me happy when skies are gray. You'll never know Boo how much I love you. Never ever move away."
~your tantrums
~you falling to sleep in my arms
~watching you point out the letters in the stores and in the car
~your laugh and big expressions

I Don't Know

~why this is our story. I begged that it would not be.
~why God didn't prevent it or perform a miracle. He could have.

I Do Know

~our God is love
~our God is always with us
~our God is not surprised or taken off guard by anything
~our God will never fail or forsake us
~our God is worthy of our praise, regardless of the circumstances
~our God always does what is best -- under His definition and His perspective only -- to glorify Himself, to increase His Kingdom, and to allow us to know Him more.
~our God has defeated death and the grave

I had heard of You with my ears,
but now my eyes see You. Job 42:5

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Christmas Cards


As promised, here is our Christmas card for 2009 -- not the most professional picture you will ever see, but it definitely captures the monkeys at this stage. Caleb is content with his ABC book, and Eveley is content to be a handful.

For me, the family Christmas card was something I really looked forward to when Robbie was born and we became parents. I was so excited to have a little one to show off to the world and pretend that everybody wanted to see and hear about our business (kind of like I do on this blog...).

Anyway, I scheduled the appointment at a department store's photo service just a few weeks before Christmas. BIG MISTAKE. But here was our first family Christmas card!

Christmas 2005

I have since learned that it is all about the kids - nobody cares to see a full body shot of us... Thanks, Sears.

I then resorted to taking my own pictures. Much better idea. Controlled environment. As many takes as we can handle. Editing galore.

Christmas 2006

Just a month after this picture was taken, our sweet Robbie went to heaven. After that, the process of creating and sending our Christmas card would change dramatically. I wanted our 2007 card to somehow capture the crazy year we had experienced.

Christmas 2007

Another year. Another change. At the end of 2008, we were getting ready to welcome little Caleb into our family. As I was preparing our cards, I just couldn't leave Robbie out. It still felt very wrong to sign our names - Bob, Lauren, Eveley Joy and Caleb. To me, it seemed so obvious that something was missing. I couldn't do it. (which is why I just referred to ourself as the Byrne family in the previous card).

This became our Christmas/New Year card for 2008-09

Creating our card for this past year, I faced the dilemma once again on whether to include pictures of Robbie. I don't believe there is a right or wrong way to handle this situation. And next year I may decide to do something totally different. But this year, I didn't let the decision taunt me. I no longer believe that my decision to not include Robbie's picture somehow means that I have forgotten him, no longer think about him, or have "moved on."
We are moving ahead -- taking each day as it comes and trying to gloriy God in this life that He has given us. We are walking this journey with the firm assurance that God is with us and has already scouted out the path ahead. He knows what is in front of us, and we trust where this journey will ultimately lead -- to an eternity with Christ and our sweet Robbie.
"Trust Him at all times, O people. Pour out your hearts to Him. For God is our refuge."
Psalm 62:8

Monday, January 11, 2010

Still Going Strong!

I've decided that I'm going to try and capture these two every Sunday - preferably in the morning before heading to church. (That is a pretty ambitious task given the way that Sunday mornings tend to go around our house.) It will be fun to watch them grow and change over the year.
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Thursday, January 7, 2010


I think this is my very favorite picture of sweet Caleb. Ever. Love it.
He is such a cutie!

He has had lots of fun playing with his favorite Christmas present -- these blocks were handmade and painted by my dad and brother. How cool is that?!

Eveley now has a favorite activity -- sledding! I hate to break it to her that we will most likely never see another snowstorm of this magnitude in her lifetime. But she is still enjoying the nearly 6 inches of snow remaining in our yard.

And this is Eveley's favorite pose -- no eye-contact, arms folded, lips pursed, and, in a tone of disgust, she'll say: "Mom. Quit looking at me."

Seriously? She's only two and a half and way too young to be copping an attitude.

She still wears diapers for crying out loud.

Somebody needs to tell her that!

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Project 52

I'm sure you have heard of Project 365 if you are a regular traveler in Blogdom. What a great idea! -- take a picture of your kids/family/world each day of the year. At the end of the year, you have a wonderful collection of memories from the year.

But I am a realist. There is no way I will be able to capture a picture each day. No way.

First of all, it will probably take me a week to even remember I am doing this. Then, I will most likely misplace my camera for a few days here and there or find a dead battery just as I'm about to snap my memory.

So, I am launching Project 52. I will do my darned best to capture 1 photo (at least) each week of the year that sums up our lives that week. Don't let me forget! I'm going to add it to my sidebar to remind me, and write it on the fridge and bathroom mirror. And even if I can't find my camera, I'm going to force the kids to sit in front of the laptop for a webcam shot or stalk them with my iPhone. It will be fun to look back on a year of our journey and see how much the children will grow and change.

I can do this.

Here's the first.

My little princess, saying "cheese" while refusing to look at the camera, and my chunky monkey cheesing proudly.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

A Rockin' New Year

So our New Year has started off with a bang. It truly was a rockin' New Year Eve as I spent most of the day (and the week) rockin my little Caleb who is pretty sick. He's been battling a terrible cough/cold/pink eye -- the yucky virus as I like to call it. He's sleeping right now and has hopefully taken a turn for the better.

Then I was awakened at 2 last night by my husband who decided to contract the yucky virus himself. When he was up, he realized that we had no water. I didn't care. It was 2:00 in the morning.

I got up with Caleb at 4 and then got him back to sleep around 4:30 when Eveley joined me in my bed. By 5:30, both kids decided I had met my sleep quotient for the night, so we went downstairs to watch a little Dora.

I now realized the water was not working. Anywhere. No water. Now it was a big deal. I checked the fridge and saw we had about 2 cups of water in our filtered pitcher.

Quick thinking. What should I save that for? Toilet flush? A drink? Brush my teeth? Wash the kids faces? Nope. I quickly made 2 cups of coffee before anyone got another idea.

So, here I sit. Ringing in the New Year with a hot cup of coffee, sick kids, and a sick hubby. Truly Beautiful. (He keeps asking me how it is that I escaped getting the yucky virus. "I didn't," I respond. "I've had it for the past week and a half." Oh well.)

I'll share our Christmas Card soon. The pics above are just a preview! Unfortunately, I didn't order enough and our snowstorm really slowed down the mail. Sorry!!

Update: Our water is working now! Praise God! I'm off to make a full pot of coffee and enjoy the day with my family.