Sunday, July 20, 2014


The boys have gotten to an age where they adore imagination play with one another. I have loved being a bystander and listening to their play and how they work things out together. On this particular day, I was cooking dinner and they were in the back yard. They sat for what I think was 30 minutes (THAT IS A REALLY LONG TIME FOR TWO ACTIVE PRESCHOOLERS) on this ledge. I don't know what all was discussed. I just now that my momma heart was incredibly full. I love see the siblings in my home become friends. There's nothing like watching them interact and enjoy one another. I could have watched them for hours. The picture quality here is horrible. It was taken on my phone from inside with a screen in between us, but this is a memory that had to be captured. Two little boys discussing the issues of preschoolhood, filling their momma heart beyond measure! 


What an honor I have as their momma! I love you Austin and Jonathan!

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Austin Turns 5!

One day I blinked and somehow this little guy 
turned into this guy:

Austin at 5 years old is a ton of fun! He loves to inquire and figure out how things go. If he's not talking, he's signing! He really enjoys all things musical and holds high the ability to sing a song correctly. He adores playing with Jonathan. Most of the time they are acting something. Among their favorite pretend things is Ninja Turtles, Frozen, Firefighter rescue missions, and any superhero! He is a great big brother to Evelina. He works hard and making her laugh and likes to help feed her! We have no doubt he's an extrovert who adores having someone to share the day with. Brother is usually enough, but not always. He craves people and values their company. We've often referred to him as an old soul as he has often said things we are pretty sure could have come from an 80 year old! We love him deeply!

This year a sweet friend gave us a Birthday Blessing Box to help celebrate the birthday kiddo. Austin thoroughly loved hearing scripture spoken over him and hearing stories about his life so far. It was evident that he clung to our words and cherished that time.

Birthday boy with his brother beside the Birthday Box Cake! Taken the morning of Austin's birthday.
As part of the birthday box there is a portion that you journal for each year. I am going to use this blog post for that.

My Favorite things in Creation
  • Flowers
  • Horses
  • People

How have you grown this year?
  • Physically
    • Self proclaimed "5 year old muscles". You have keen athletic ability that often surprises your momma (maybe not such a shock to daddy!). You are able to hit a pitched ball really well. Though you prefer daddy's pitching you will hit from momma if there's no other choice! You can even do a cartwheel!
  • Intellectually
    • You are a sponge for knowledge and learning. You know all your letter sounds and have begun to understand what happens when letters come together. You are able to sound out many words when reading. You like to do "math" in joining things together to see what their sum is. You love to work on your "school" book with momma or daddy.
  • Socially
    • You deeply value people. You make an effort to know everyone's first and last name. You are learning the importance of being included and including. You like to show that you are excited when you see someone you know (PSA: please brace yourself world for a tackle hug!)
  • Spiritually
    • You have a wide base of bible stories and enjoy learning what God has to say about things. You have articulated that "I trust" in the message of the gospel. We are still exploring with you the depth of that decision. You love to play baptism with your brother in the bathtub (though it frustrates you when he won't play Dr. Dennis and baptize you!). You have enjoyed being in big church with us this year. You really thrive on worshiping God through song!

  • learn to pitch really well.
  • learn to catch really well.
  • learn to bat really well for the Rangers
  • learn how to be a dolphin (swimming)
  • I think I'd like to climb really well
During this time of asking him what his goals are for next year, Aaron asked, "What about learning to read?" Austin answered, "Oh yeah (long pause) Good goal!"
We had a blast celebrating this big 5 year old this year!



Friday, May 2, 2014


Most of you know, I was born in Brazil and came to the states when I was only 5 years old. My family - dad, mom, and brother - came in pursuit of the "American dream". My parents wanted to offer my brother and me the opportunities that the USA has. So they chose to uproot our family and we became another classic immigration family. As a child, you don't see much of what your parents surrendered. But after having moved my little family a time or two, I know what that means. I also know that with each move we've had, I always had hope for family like community. And these precious faces are the ones that taught me to hope, search, and pursue that!

This is my "cousin" Ana. Shortly after my family's move to the US, we met Ana's family. She and I were early elementary school age. Her family became our family. Her mom, my aunt. I claimed her as my cousin. Weekends, birthday parties, Christmases, family vacations, our families were always together. Of course our relationship had its seasons. We liked eachother, but hated each other during periods of our childhood. She didn't like me mothering her. I didn't like her telling my mom that I said bad words. We attended each other's graduations. We had long conversations about the boys who are now our husbands. We went wedding dress shopping together. Through the years she has camped out in my heart. Our friendship is something I cherish deeply and I am so thankful that we can continue to add to our memories. Not only that, we know have children who get to be "family".
Between the two of us we have 5 kids. Jonathan and Jonah are just a few months apart. Evelina and Lydia are just a few months apart. Last week, she bravely loaded the plane with her two kiddos and made the truck to Texas to spend a few days with us. It was a precious time!




Friday, March 28, 2014

Holes for Hope

Aaron's organization Project Restore Hope had a charity golf tournament on Monday. I got to go. I GOT TO GO. Yes, there's weight to that. You see, Aaron and I fell in love partnering together. Our strengths and weaknesses are a great complement to one another. However, the reality is that in this season of life with small children our roles don't always allow us to engage in this sort of ministry very often. So the fact that I GOT TO GO was a sweet sweet thing for both of us. God used Aaron and his team in a big way to make this tournament a huge success. The final calculations are still being made, but they were on target to increase their revenue by 50%. The day weather was absolutely perfect for golfing. Everyone seemed to have a wonderful time!

Sugar Tree Golf Course. It's beautiful!


Registration Ready!

I love to see him in this element!
Golfers ready to start off the day!

The Sundance Group from Morgan and Stanley have adopted Project Restore Hope as one of their charity organizations. They are ambassadors for PRH. It's been such an encouragement to have their support. The Sundance group were both event sponsors, golf players, and volunteers for the golf tournament. Pictured here is Jennifer (on the left) and Diane (that's aunt Diane- on the right). They were running one of our contests. Jennifer is one of the two partners of the Sundance Group. Cari was busy golfing.

Speaking of Cari - after having taken up golf just a few short months ago, was runner up for Women's Longest Drive!

This sweet lady was one of the two that made it possible for me to attend. Kay came out and kept my baby while I helped with the tournament. That's life in community and it richly blesses me!

Back home, Nana had the boys.  I dropped of two little boys with their overnight bag and bikes. I got two astronauts back! They too had a blast. Just like my little guys were transformed by the day, we pray that many lives will be transformed by the funds raised! Aaron and I believe strongly in holistic ministry. This golf tournament was a small way where we were able to rally together along with a huge community of people to raise funds to enable that sort of ministry to occur. 

There's no place in the world I'd rather be that at his side. No matter where that puts me physically!


She hugs me. I melt

If my sweet Evelina has been sad for a few minutes before I'm able to get to her, when I pick her up she hugs me. Yes - both arms around my neck on either side, the weight of her body melts into me and she clinches my neck. What 6 month old does that? I've never seem a baby be able to embrace like that. It about does me in everytime.

Simple post - yes. But it's with tears clouding my eyes that I type because I don't ever want to forget that my sweet baby girl did this. I love her!