Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Counting Mercies: #54 - Milestones

Mark the milestones of Your mercy...
Psalm 25:6

Since Sophi has been home, we've had plenty of reasons to celebrate around here, and I'm still trying to get caught up!

First morning home...everyone was up bright and early!
Hank wanted his birthday cake for breakfast! 

Our precious 3rd born turned 5! I love this boy! He has such a big heart and a determined spirit! We celebrated his birthday on our first day home from Bulgaria with a cake and decorations that he and his MiMi had picked out while we were gone. 

Happy BIrthday Hank! 
You hang with your older brothers so well, and I could not ask for a better big brother for Barrett. Even though Sophi is older than you, you are still so much bigger and stronger than your newest sister, and you take such good care of her! I can always count on you to jump on the trampoline with her! You are such a good brother, and as MiMi says, you are such a good Hank! We love you and thank God for your life! 

FIVE!

A few days after Hank's birthday, Will and I celebrated our 8th anniversary! At this point, all I wanted to do was get in the car and leave! I didn't even care where I went, or if anyone went with me (sorry Will), I just wanted a quiet place to get away and catch up on sleep and sort through the emotions swirling through my head. Don't worry! I didn't run away, although I did have a hard time not wishing I was here...


A few years ago (THREE kids less!)

Normally, Will and I spend our anniversary at the beach without any kiddos! This year was a little different! :) It was an anniversary unlike all the others, but at the end of the day (a long and hard day), I knew that it was a milestone of mercy! We were home! We were together! We were the Momma and Daddy to SIX little ones! God has been so good to us, and I know that whatever comes over the next 8 years, it will be good...because of His goodness and mercy! 

The second week home, we officially started back school! Hank started kindergarten, Palmer started first grade, and Web started second grade! I'm pretty sure that the boys wouldn't consider school a reason to celebrate, but I sure did! At that point, I was so thankful for a little bit of structure and routine in our lives! The kids have done really well transitioning back, and homeschooling has been a really good thing for all of us.




Whenever Palmer is having a not-so-good attitude, I plop Evie in
her bumbo right in front of him! There's something about seeing
your "baby twin" laughing at you that will make even spelling practice tolerable! :)

Sophi isn't the only one who has gained weight since she came home!
Check out the arms of the littlest Blackmon! :)

Speaking of Evie, she hit a few milestones, too! My baby girl turned 3 months old (and by the time I get this post finished, she'll be 4 months old)!  I am so grateful that the Lord sent us this little treasure! She is a great sleeper; most nights making it the whole night without a bottle! She wakes up early and drinks her bottle while I drink my coffee and read my Bible. By far, it's my favorite time of the day! The house is perfectly quiet except for Evie's sweet, little sounds!


Evie at four months! I love this little cupcake!

Her sweet smile melts my heart! She loves her brothers and grins at Sophi as long as she's not making too much noise. (For a child who can't talk YET, Sophi can be quite loud!!!) Since we've been home, though, Evie has struggled with all of the noise and commotion and chaos that fills up most of our day! Several times a day, but especially at the end of the day, something (most often, some BODY) will set her off! That little bottom lip puckers up, and she is pretty much inconsolable until I can get her to calm down! It's been SO hard to see this sweet baby girl get so worked up, and it's equally hard that no one else can seem to calm her down but me! I'm hoping this is just a short-lived phase, but this sweet little girlie is definitely more sensitive than her brothers! :)

33!

A few weeks ago we also celebrated my birthday! The boys made me a crown out of flowers, and I got to go for a jog all by myself! Sometimes it's the simple things that are the best, and as I had a few quiet minutes to myself, I did some reflecting on this past year! God's faithfulness has been so tangible, and His mercy to me and my family continually brings me to my knees! What a journey this year has been! I can't wait to see what this next year brings!

Marking the milestones has been so good for me, and it brings a smile to my face as I go back and look at pictures from our first few weeks home with Sophi! Some days - a lot of days - I feel like we're not making any progress, but when I take a step back, it's so much easier to see! I can see how Sophi has grown! I see that she is capable of learning. I see her smiling more, and sometimes I see a sparkle in her eyes, and I know that the Lord is working in her heart and healing her mind! I see her beginning to come out of her shell and play with her brothers! Remembering the little girl that first week home and seeing the changes in her is reason enough to celebrate! 

A pale-faced, scared-to death little girl on her first morning at home!

Two months later!


I can't believe that it's already mid-October and that we are working on almost 2 months of having Sophi home! I know that I say this over and over again, but it's true and I am so thankful for it! The Lord has been so faithful! He has carried us through some hard days! I so very distinctly remember how I felt that first morning home! I remember feeling like I had just woken up from a bad dream! I was so exhausted, overwhelmed, and afraid, and I wondered over and over again what in the world we were doing! Some days I just didn't want to get out of bed, but Mercy met me, morning after morning after morning! And sometimes it still feels like I'm living a dream, but it's not a bad dream anymore, just a hard one, with lots of hard moments! But I know these hard moments will be worth it! As I remember the milestones and as I count the mercies, HIS mercies, it will be worth it because nothing can shroud His glory, nothing can thwart His purpose! It's a promise...our good, His glory...even when it's hard! And, so, the counting continues! We're taking it one day at a time, and we're making it... mercy after mercy after mercy!

Birthday hug from my oldest! I never would have imagined that
at 33 I would have 6 kids, seven and under!

It is a delightful and profitable occupation to mark the hand of God in the lives of ancient saints, and to observe His goodness in delivering them, His mercy in pardoning them, and His faithfulness in keeping His covenant with them. But would it not be even more interesting and profitable for us to remark the hand of God in our own lives? Ought we not to look upon our own history as being at least as full of God, as full of His goodness and of His truth, as much a proof of His faithfulness and veracity, as the lives of any of the saints who have gone before? Let us review our own lives. Surely in these we may discover some happy incidents, refreshing to ourselves and glorifying to God...Let us, then, weave His mercies into a song. Let us take the pure gold of thankfulness, and the jewels of praise and make them into another crown for the head of Jesus...while we praise the Lord whose mercy endureth forever.
Charles Spurgeon

Waiting to see how this story unfolds..

Surely goodness, mercy, and unfailing love shall follow me all the days of my life, and through the length of my days, the house of the Lord [and His presence] shall be my dwelling place.
Psalm 23:6

XOXO,
Melanie

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