Our Carli is a Blessing - A Gift From Heaven Above

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Sunday, October 1, 2017

Happy 9th Birthday Carli Lynn!

"Like a small boat
On the ocean
Sending big waves
Into motion
Like how a single word
Can make a heart open
I might only have one match
But I can make an explosion..."

Happy 9th Birthday Carli Lynn! You may only be one little girl, but the positive impact you've had in so many other peoples lives by far exceeds even your imagination. May you continue to always offer a smile to brighten another's day, give a kind word even when they are hard to find and hold your head high when things don't always work out the way you envisioned. I cannot wait to see what you accomplish in the year to come!

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Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Then There's Ava

When Carli unloads my dishwasher, the silverware drawer gets reorganized and each utensil is carefully and neatly stacked...when Ava unloads the dishwasher well, the silverware at least gets in the right drawer. I can't say the same about the Tupperware bowls...somehow those ended up in the floor of the pantry today...

What's funny...ask Ava to clean the toilets and you've never seen such a well cleaned bowl (by 7 yr old standards). I'm pretty sure Carli just hides in the bathroom and doesn't even attempt to clean the toilets when it's her day for bathroom duty!

Ava is suppose to put 5 things that tell her class about herself in this brown paper bag...here is what she put in her bag:

1. Softball rings - b/c she likes to play softball and "apparently I'm pretty good."

2. Mini Emoji Pillow - b/c she collects the bigger ones and is obsessed with all things emoji.

3. A picture of her and her siblings - including her new baby sister coming in January.

4. A Sonic Peppermint - b/c "we go to Sonic an awfully lot."

And last but most original...

5. A bag of dirt - b/c "Mom, I like dirt. It's fun to play in and roll around in and when it gets wet, guess what?! You have mud and then it gets even more fun!"

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Monday, August 21, 2017

First Day of School 2017

Another first day has come upon us!  Carli was very ready for her first day of school.  Ava was a bit nervous.  She missed meet the teacher b/c she came down with a case of strep throat last week...maybe she was getting it out of her system before the school year started.  One can hope!  :)

Carli Lynn (3rd Grade) & Ava Ruth (2nd Grade

Keeping the tradition alive...I may have to bribe them to hold hands next year.

Carli said the highlight of her day was this...picking her seat, right in the middle in front.  :)

Ava with her teacher, Mrs. Grigsby and Carli with her teacher, Mrs. Hultberg.

Ava was ecstatic to be in the same class as her buddy, Autumn.

Their first day went great and they were all smiles when Drew and I picked them up.  We think Drew is mad at Keith for taking his sisters away from him all day!  I had a lot of cuddles today but he struggled to nap, it was apparently too quiet in the house to sleep.  :)  Here's to a great school year!

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Sunday, August 20, 2017

Happy 40th Anniversary Grammy & Pa!

"I come from a long line of love
When times get hard
We don't give up
Forever's in my heart and in my blood
You see I come from a long line of love."

Happy 40th Anniversary Mom and Dad!

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Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Just a Little Trim

Carli cut a good 5 to 6 inches off her hair today...and despite my urging, Ava refused to donate her locks and only cut off maybe an inch or two. She even refused before and after pics bc she looks the same!

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Sunday, August 13, 2017

Ava's First Softball Tournament

Ava played in her first 8u tournament as a Sassy Slugger this Saturday.  She was a wee bit nervous but once she got out on the field she did amazing!  She played outfield and a mean catcher.  She got some really good hits too!  This was her teams first tournament together and they won 3rd place!  The only teams to beat them were two teams who were moving up to play 10u ball at the end of the month. 

Drew with his buddy Braleigh.  Drew was not a fan of Ava being out on the field and not on the sidelines playing with him!

This was also Keith's first tournament to coach his team.  He did a great job.  Pa stood in as a pitcher, pitching all 4 games in one day!  All in all, we had a lot of first today and it ended really well!

Sunday morning we asked Ava if her legs were tired and sore from squatting at catcher for 2.5 games and she laughed and said, "No, why?" Ha!  Must be nice to be so young!  :)  Keith and Pa were a bit sore Sunday!

Ava was very blessed to have both sets of Grandparents get to watch her play in her first tournament.  She had quite the cheering squad!

We are looking forward to a great season!

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Monday, August 7, 2017

Baby Hays #4 Reveal

Over Easter, we lost our 6th pregnancy at 9.5 wks. The roller coaster that started us off on was not one we had planned. When I went back for our follow up with the OB, everything was fine. But 2 wks and still I had no cycle, so we went back and it felt like we were dropped off a cliff. The blood test showed I was pregnant but the doctor seemed to think it was chemical. They told me to come back in two weeks and we'd have a sono and we did but all we could see was a sac, an empty sac. The OB still thought probably chemical b/c nothing lined up to be otherwise. But still, he wanted to wait two more weeks before he intervened. So two wks later, we went back fully expecting to see an empty sac, only they found an baby that only measured six wks, not the eight they expected. Still, the doctor said to keep things realistic, the baby measured up to two wks behind where it should according to all the data we had. 

So 10 days later we went back, and there was a heartbeat and the baby measured 8.5 wks...a full wk bigger than it should have. So the doc said, sometimes science can't figure it out...let's see again in a couple of wks. All this time, I've had blood draws out the wahzoo - I'm on progesterone which makes the nausea worse...so I'm on nausea meds twice the normal dose to keep functioning and still no knowing what to expect. We went back two wks later and baby measured 10 wks! Right where baby should be if they went back original data and we surpassed the 9.5 wk mark where I had lost my other two babies. Keith and I breathed a sigh and thought maybe just maybe we can see God's plan now.

That was on a Thursday. The following Monday night we were at Ava's district softball tournament in Quitman riding back to the hotel and a balloon popped and there was blood. Lots of blood. And I knew that was it...we were done. After 2 hrs at Quitman ER, an ambulance ride, lots of tears, and even more prayers they found a very active, healthy baby on the ultrasound...but told us there's a 50/50 chance we'd still miscarry. I continued to bleed for the next five weeks. But each wk, the baby has grown and they eventually found the hemorrhage and it has gotten smaller.

So, today at 16.5 wks, after lots of nerves and prayers...we told our kids we were having another baby. A baby girl to be exact, she's due to arrive in January. We are excited, scared and still protecting our hearts a bit. But the joy and excitement on the kids faces makes the tears and fears of the unknown worth it. I can't say we planned four, but I can say God did. And He has always had a plan for our family...what's one more strong willed child in our household?! If you've made it this far, thank you and we won't turn down any extra prayers if you wish to send some our way.

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Friday, August 4, 2017

8 Years - Same Face

Same blue eyes, same silly face...a little more hair and a little less rolls. I am not sure where the time went!

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Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Water Play

I haven't had the umph this summer to go out and plan activities for the kids.  We pretty much survive.  :)  I kind of let Kayla take care of fun outside activities when she's here once a week...but now Kayla has to go back to school...something about a real job and I was inspired to set up a water slide for the kids. 

Turns out Drew was not a fan.  Ha!  He's a little more reserved than his sisters were about new experiences.  He cheered them on and after 30 minutes he demanded a bubble bath...much more to his liking as far as water play was concerned!

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Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Sibling Love

Drew is getting big enough to voice his opinions and hold his ground these days!  He LOVES that his sisters are home for the summer and he gets to play with them all day long.  Most of the time the girls appease him...most of the time!  :)

Drew loves to play outside with his sisters.  He and Ava play in the dirt a lot and occasionally the girls will allow him in on their softball games.  :)

He's never been interested in coloring or writing but  Carli has been working on him all summer and finally he will color with her for a few minutes at a time - his favorite things to color are big trucks and ducks.  :)

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Saturday, July 8, 2017

Up All Night Tournament

After Ava winning 1st place in her tournament, Keith drove from Quitman to Nacogdoches at midnight last night to watch Carli and her Sassy Slugger's play in an all night tournament. And it was so worth the effort. They started playing at 6:30 on Friday night and finished up at 8:30 this morning! After playing 7 games, they won second place, only losing in the championship game by one run. I didn't get to be there and cheer them on in person, but I am so thankful to Amy, my Dad, Courtney and Keith for sending me updates through the night. What an amazing experience! I am so anxious for Carli to wake up to tell me all about it!! In the meantime, the challenge is on to keep Ava and Drew quiet enough to let Keith and Carli sleep!

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Thursday, May 25, 2017

Last Day of School

Well, it's official.  The last day of school has arrived.  As all the teachers jump for joy, all the parents hunker down and prepare for summer...ha!  Actually, we are very much looking forward to our summer!  It's mostly fully of softball with a beach trip and several random activities planned.  Most of all, we plan to enjoy eachother!

The girls sure have grown this year!!
First and Last Day Pictures

So on the last day of school, we pretty much show up...have a party and leave!  :)  Carli's class had a breakfast party. 

We thoroughly enjoyed Carli's teacher, Mrs. Shofner.  This was her last year as a classroom teacher.  She is moving to be over the Special Ed program in the 3rd -5th grade wing next year.  Carli loved Mrs. Shofner and is excited that she will be in the same wing of the elementary school as her next year!

After Carli's party, we went down to claim Ava.  They weren't having a party but were having a pretty laid back day full of movies and special treats.  I offered to come back for her but she decided to come on home with us anyway.  Ava loved having Mrs. Ivy this year.  We were certainly blessed with amazing teachers.

Autumn moved to Troup over Christmas and she and Ava hit it off immediately!  Ava loves Autumn and we are praying the get in the same class next year!

We also took our teachers end of the year gifts.  The girls wrote their teachers notes and we created a wordle for them.

Here is Mrs. Shofner's letter and Wordle:

Here is Mrs. Ivy's Note and Wordle:

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