Wednesday, May 7, 2014


Last September I started something called BSF. Bible Study Fellowship. It's a international, non-denominational bible study that meets every wednesday morning. When i first started, there wasn't any room in the children's program for Ainsley, and she was placed on the waiting list. My mom agreed to watch her for me those mornings, until she could get in. 
The first day that I went, the leader I had been assigned met me in the sanctuary at the church it is held at. She introduced me to lots of different women and marched me right up to the front row to sit down. She was the sweetest, most southern woman I had ever met. After prayer, welcome and hymnals, we walked to our assigned room for group time. 8 months ago, I had no idea that those women I met that day would impact me in such a profound way. 

Each week I began to desire my lessons more. I began to make time each day for my lesson, not just cram the whole weeks study into one or two nights. I began to really read my bible, for the first time in my life. The bible because more than just 'advice' and 'stories' to me. I was developing a relationship with someone who lives 2000 years ago. I was getting to know this man who lived a life of love and sacrifice. Things began to 'click' for me. 

Ainsley eventually got into the children's program. and I am so thankful for that. they don't 'babysit' her. they teach her. they love her. they read the bible. they sing bible songs. the children's ministry pray for these kids and invest in them. i volunteered one week and was amazed at how receptive the children are to their 'lessons'. these little people, being quiet and sitting still (shocking in itself), listening to the Word of God. 

Each week, my group of girls began to open up more and more. Some of them talking about things that they had never talked about before. to anyone. we prayed for pregnancies to happen. and they did, 3 times this semester. We prayed for our children. we prayed for each other. for each other's husbands and families. We became transparent in ways that takes years to do with people. but it was so easy for us. God moved in such amazing ways in our group this year. I could go on and on about it. I know this is my first year, and I have nothing else to compare it to. But everyone in my group tells me the dynamics and openness that occurred for us, doesn't happen often. I am so grateful for that. 

So today, the last day of BSF until next fall, was an unexpected emotional day for me. To hear the stories of so many women (all groups met together today) and what they have gone through this year. And how the women in their group helped through it. and how God used the study of matthew to help them. it was so humbling and awing. 

I wanted to articulate to the girls, and to my leader, how much they have meant to me this year. and how incredibly much they have helped me. how listening to them talk about their struggles and fears - helped me deal with my own struggles and fears. when one rejoiced, we all rejoiced. God took women who all came from such different backgrounds, such different lives, and wove us all together to form this bond that strengthened over months. even as i type this I realize i am not accurately conveying what I want to say… 

so I will sum it up with this. going to bsf that morning, not knowing anyone there, was one of the best decisions I have made in a long long time. I am deeply saddened that it is over for the year. But am already looking forward to next year. and I know the women I have friended this year are now a part of my life. 

"For where two or three come together in my name, there am I with them." Matthew 18:20 

Thursday, May 1, 2014

15 months!

15 months! I wasn't sure I would keep up with her monthly updates, but Philip and I both like that this blog is more or less her baby book. when people ask us when she started doing this, or when she reached such and such milestone, we are both like 'we will have to check the blog'. one day I will print all of this into a book for her. 
why is she so BIG?! 
weight: 22.6 oz 49%
height: 30 3/4 in 61%
OFC: 46 1/2 68% 
she got shots at the Dr today so she got a treat at Meijer when we went after her appointment 
she ate the whole cookie
size: she is in some 12 month clothes that aren't length restricting. she seems to be in between 12 month and 18 month right now because a lot of 18 month clothes are still too big on her. 
still in size 3 pampers cruisers during day, side 4 night time diapers at night. 
and she wears size FIVE shoes! 
physical: we now have ELEVEN teeth! of course she has an odd number because she always seems to. her four molars are mostly all in (the right top and bottom still making their way in). 
her hair is getting lighter and curly 
still blue eyes, with long eyelashes 
her bangs are always in her eyes, and she loves to pull her hair barrette out (she thinks its soo funny), so I have to put a little side pony tail in her hair
eating: her appetite varies from day to day. she will pretty much always eat fruit. or ice cream. and water. she loves drinking her water. her favorite snack this month are those little cheesy poof things. 
she still takes 3 bottles of milk/day. lets see what the dr has to say about that tomorrow… eek! 
messy eater 
sleeping: she goes to bed around 730 and sleeps until 7-715 in the morning. she takes anywhere from 1.5-2.5 hour nap in the afternoon. she only takes her paci now for nap time and bedtime. 
new things:
she has learned to use sign language for the word 'more' and does it well. we are working on please. 
she dances around in a circle when you say TWIRL! 
when asked, she can point to her toes, nose, hair and fingers. she can find mine and philip's belly button when we ask her to. 
she isn't very vocal yet with her words. she says dada and happy-happy-happy (thanks nana). when you ask her what a cow says she says moooo. it's crazy to me that she understands almost everything we say, but isn't saying much herself. 
she waves hi and bye when people come and go
she is like a little sponge and just soaking in so much right now 
when you ask her if she wants to go take a bath she runs to the stairs to go upstairs. still loves bath time. 
she can play apps on my iPhone and her Nabi by scrolling with her little finger 
when you say "how big is Ainsley?" she puts her hands up above her head 
she loves playing peek a boo and hiding from you 
she likes to hide things. stuff it in the crack of couch, under a pillow/blanket, etc. 
she doesn't like to hold your hand and jerks it away when you try. very independent little thing. 
she is the best hugger. ever. 
she has become a fan of jewelry (thanks to her necklaces from Aunt Annie) and loves wearing her beads and bracelets 
crawling into everything 
this is what happens when her and daddy are playing 
and my favorite pic 
she is so proud and happy Jax is wearing her beads. Jax is not as thrilled about it…. 
and how funny is this picture? that is me as a baby on the left. ainsley on the right. all on her own…