watching the sun bake

As soon as I get my camera photos uploaded, I'll post those. But, until then, here are a few iPhone photos of our family beach vacation to Florida last week. My, my how we love the coast.


boys after golf



mca wwa

vgw mca


TKAM mca

awa seashell

mcguires moose

mcguires menu

vra birthday

mca wwa beach

awa dresses


IT'S A...

We just got to the beach and my Mom cut the cake...

And Baby A is...


More soon...but know we are thrilled, and we have a few surprised members of the family! :)



All this week we have been having VBS at our church. I am teaching the 3rd and 4th graders (which consists of a class entirely of girls!). Every night, we march into the sanctuary, say our pledges, pray, take up an offering, and then we dismiss the younger children to their classrooms. After that, we have Missions Central with Mrs. Ruth Hawkins. Mrs. Ruth, who I wrote some about in this post, is a lady in our church who is quite a trip! I really think she has been everywhere in the world. Just last night, she had on a t-shirt that proudly displayed, "I've Been Baptized in the Jordan River!" She is hilarious and so full of life. I love her dearly. I don't ever think I've seen her when she's not smiling.

As she was speaking last night about a missionary to the U.N. in New York, I was certain that I felt the baby move for the first time. I don't know how to describe that feeling, but it blessed my heart beyond imagination. I told Mat about it, and later that night, I told Mrs. Ruth that she gets the honor of being the one who was speaking when I first felt my baby move.

When we got home later that night, I was lying in bed, and I felt the baby move again. Mat tried to feel it, and he thinks he may have once, but he couldn't be certain.

There are absolutely no words to describe the feeling of having a baby move inside of you. Most people have told me it feels like "flutters" or "butterflies" but I think it feels more like a tiny, tiny bump. It's often quick, but it's there, and for that, I am so grateful! This has definitely been one of my favorite parts of being pregnant.

Since we found out the gender and even since I felt the baby move, things have slowly become a little more real. Like I said Wednesday, we haven't decided on a name yet, but I know when we do, and when we tell our family and friends, things will definitely become all the more real.

I absolutely cannot wait until we cut that cake on Sunday night that will reveal a blue or pink cake so we can start telling everyone about this little miracle that's moving around like crazy inside of me!

20.5 weeks pregnant with words


Baby A gives a thumbs up

I went to the doctor today, and we did find out if Baby A is a BOY or a GIRL. Unfortunately, we can't tell anyone what I'm having until after we've told our families at our little gender reveal party on Sunday night. But, don't worry. I'll let you know early, early Monday morning, for sure.

Here's just some things I want to remember about our day...

ultrasound monitor

The technician who did our sonogram is hilarious. We love her so much. She is sassy, but so good at what she does, and she always baby talks to our baby on the sonogram screen. It means so much to me. Right when we started the sonogram, she went straight to find out the gender. And she did. And she showed us how she knew that it is what it is. I just had to take her word for it, because I never can see anything on those sonograms! Mat asked her how for sure she was, and she said there was no doubting it! My doctor, Dr. Link, later confirmed to us that the baby definitely is a _______. :) Mat and I were (and are still!) thrilled to death!!

I had been feeling a little uneasy over the past few days because I haven't felt the baby move, so I asked our tech if she could let me hear the heartbeat. She, of course, did. She said Baby A's heartbeat was coming in at a strong 132. I was so relieved. She also showed us Baby A's two kidneys, brain, and four heart chambers, along with 2 arms, 2 legs, a straight spine, and good skin. Who knew you could see skin on an ultrasound!

Unfortunately, Baby A had its back turned to us almost the whole time. The tech tried and tried to get the baby to turn around, and finally, Baby A did. Here's some photos...but don't think I'm going to post the photos that would give away the gender!

baby face 20 weeks

baby thumbs up 20 weeks

And in case you are like me and have a hard time making these things out, here are the same two photos with some explanations...

baby face 20 weeks2

baby thumbs up 20 weeks2

More than just knowing and being thrilled by what gender our precious kiddo is, we are absolutely blown away at the graciousness of God in this situation. Lord knows, our conception alone was a miracle, and I still cannot find words to express my gratitude to the Lord for bestowing this child upon us. Mat and I are forever grateful to be entrusted with this great blessing. Thank you, Jesus.

The Lord has done great things for us, and we are filled with JOY.
-Psalm 126:3

Great things, indeed. And joy is abundant.


happenings...and almost 20 weeks

Happy Monday!

We had a lazy weekend compared to last weekend. For the 4th, Mat smoked some Boston Butts. They were so good, and I was so impressed with Mat's smoking skills. The guy has got it going on. I for sure married up!

boston butts

We invited some friends over, and we had a ball! We got to meet our friends, Ken and Sarah Lovett's son, Luke, who was adopted from the Ukraine earlier this year. We are so happy he's now at home with his mom and dad! Mat and I bought Luke some sparklers, and we think they were a big hit with the little guy! We also got to see the Rices-- Adam's been gone to training for the past six weeks, so we were so happy to welcome him back to Louisville where he belongs! :)

everybody on the 4th

first sparkler

the lovetts

We had a TON of food, including these guys. It only took one of them to clear up my sinuses.

jalapeno poppers

And Meg also sent me a pic of this baby girl on her 3rd 4th of July. If this doesn't scream America to you, I don't know what does...

EPG cupcake july 4

In other news, we seem to have a new creature grazing our yards. Meet Black Cat, and no-- he/she doesn't have a name, because I haven't been brave enough to venture into his/her personal space and see if he/she is a he or a she.

Black cat

In Baby A news, I will be 20 weeks tomorrow. I go to the doctor on Wednesday morning to find out if this little person inside me is a boy or a girl. I honestly have NO clue as to what I think it is. I know most moms have a hunch, but this mom is completely clueless. Most everyone has said girl except for my mom, Mat's parents, and just a handful of others. Everyone else (the majority) has said girl. We will be completely happy and excited for either, especially because this is our first.

Here is the ONLY photo I have of my pregnancy bump. I believe this was made (while I was sitting on the couch with Mat) when I was about 18 weeks (2 weeks ago)...

Baby bump 18 weeks

It has definitely grown since then! Trust me.

We have VBS at church at night this week, then on Sunday, we're loading up and headed South...way South...to the Gulf Coast. It's been almost 2 years since I've smelled the salt water and put REAL seafood in my mouth, and I cannot tell you how excited I am. My year+ spent living in Mobile was all I needed to fall COMPLETELY in love with the Gulf Coast, and I am beyond eager to return to where my heart is the most content. I am so glad Mat also shares a love for the ocean and for the Gulf Coast. We are two peas in a pod.

Unless you live by the water, you won't know what this means, but before Mat and I were married, and when he was in Mobile, he would say, "I just need to see the water." I didn't really get it then, but after living in Mobile for a while, I completely get what he's saying now. Sometimes, it just does my little heart and soul good to "see the water." And I'm not just talking about loving the beach. I'm talking about needing to see the water.

Not only will seeing the water be great, but I can't wait to "introduce" Baby A to the water. I just know that I will feel he/she move when I get my first glimpse of the Gulf. :) I am thankful for family who makes a beach trip possible for me year after year.

Enjoy your day!

Oh, and P.S.- just so you know, we will be doing a "gender reveal" thing with family Sunday night. After that, I know Mat and I will let everyone know what the baby is. Follow us on Twitter or check our FB pages if you're dying to know! :)