December 17, 2012

Traditions.

Christmas is a time that is filled with traditions; ones that you celebrate as family. From going to the tree farm, and selecting the perfect tree to cut down and bring home, to decorating sugar cookies with friends. So far this season I have done both of these things, along with many others; but in light of the recent events taking place in our world, I have been struck with how thankful I am that for me and my family Christmas is more than a tree, cookies or gifts.
For some, accepting God's gift of His own Son is the hardest gift to open on Christmas morning. Maybe it's easier to wrap up toys or clothes, than to open up their own heart to a gift that is beyond our human understanding.
The fact is, the angels we place on top of our Christmas trees, that we work so hard to get to stand up straight, represent the hosts of angels that came to the lowly shepards over 2,000 years ago declaring,

 "Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. 
Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. 
This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger." 
Luke 2:10-17

The lights that we string around our tree, and adorn every eve and crest of our homes, were originally placed to showcase the fact that Christ is the 'light of the world.' The gifts that we spend hours agonizing over and wrapping are meant to represent the gifts that the wisemen brought Jesus after following a star.
This Christmas I challenge you to pause, even for a moment, to reflect on the simplicity of a baby; a baby that came to save the world...a big task, but not one to large for a God that loves us so much. The gift is simply waiting...it might not be the most flashy gift under your tree, but it certainly is the only gift that will last forever.

November 25, 2012

5 Months Old

Blake Denver - FIVE Months
  • He now is now almost 15 pounds!
  • He is now wearing 6 month clothes.
  • He is growing...I hope because he is waking up again at night to eat and be comforted...
  • He is down to only three naps during the day.
  • He laughed for the first time on his five month birthday :) Best gift ever!
  • He love to "talk" and has a very sweet little voice.
  • He loves looking in the mirror at his reflection, and looking at mom or dad too.
  • He found his toes, and plays with them all the time.
  • He accidentally rolled from his back to his tummy...real ones haven't happened yet.
  • He rolled over from his tummy to his back for the first time (on his 4 month birthday).
  • He enjoys play dates with many of his friends...well they will be someday :)
  • He tried baby oatmeal for the first time...we are going to try again next month.
  • He loves to be naked; he will talk up a storm and wiggle all around when he is.
  • He yells out before he has a really big sneeze.
  • He celebrated his first big holidays: Halloween and Thanksgiving.
  • He loves Christmas...I don't know for sure but since I was singing "Deck the Halls" when he laughed I think that is a pretty good sign.
What a month to be thankful for. So thankful for my family, our new home, my friends, my church, Jason's job and so many more things. We are such a blessed family; I thank the Lord that He is taking care of our needs and providing for our family.

Happy Thanksgiving from the Bernard Family!

November 03, 2012

Master Bedroom

I am finally ready to post some of the hard work that Jason and I have put into our house since we moved in in April. We knew that we wanted the master bedroom done before Blake came...not that that happened, but the big things, like the paint, closet doors and new furniture were done when he came early. I must say that it does feel like a retreat when I go in there. So thankful for a finished room that is so light and beautiful.

After
Before

October 29, 2012

Smiles and Squeals

Blake Denver - FOUR Months
              video
  • He now is  13lbs.  13oz.(25th percentile); 25 1/4 in. long (75th percentile); 41 cm in head circumference (10-25th percentile)
  • His bedtime is around 8:30pm to 9:00pm.
  • He slept over 11 hours straight one night...average is around 7 hours straight a night.
  • He has started making lots of different sounds: "growling," "ahhhh," and many squeals.
  • He loves watching football on the weekends with dad.
  • He enjoys going for walks and looking at all the trees.
  • He can hold his head up without it falling around.
  • He can sit up in his chair all on his own.
  • He rolled over from his tummy to his back for the first time (on his 4 month birthday).
  • He is starting to push with his legs when he is on his back...rolling over that way isn't far off.
  • He loves to suck on his fingers all the time.
  • He visited his dad at his work for lunch with mommy.
  • He "talked" with grandpa and grandma Nolz on Skype.
  • He had his first trip to the grocery store with just mom.
  • He does not like being put into his car-seat...he's okay once we get on the road.
  • He went to his first pumpkin patch.
  • He loves getting to spend time with his grandparents, aunts and uncles. 
  • He enjoys looking at himself in the mirror.
Just last weekend Jason, Blake and I went to the pumpkin patch out at E.Z. Orchards. This of course was Blake's first experience out at a pumpkin patch, and he seemed to enjoy himself. We went to the petting zoo, went on a hay ride and got a pumpkin. I'm excited to watch him walking around next year, but was impressed with how well he did this year.
We finally got a picture of the four generations of Bernard boys. Hoping that Blake will get some of that Bernard height too. :)
Happy Halloween!

October 17, 2012

Blake's Angel Buddy



Friends are something that once you find them you don't ever want to let them go. They help you when you are struggling, and are there to cheer you on when things are going good. Sometimes we meet them when we are very young, or we meet later in life. No matter when the moment happens; that friend is something so precious.

Blake, Jason and I, along with many others were expectantly awaiting the arrival of Blake’s ‘Little Buddy.’ Our friend’s Tim and Michelle were anticipating welcoming their own son this month. Michelle and I had had many conversations about watching our boys grow up together, about watching them go from baby buddies to friends.
On Sunday, the Lord determined that this sweet little boy was going to open his eyes in heaven. Blake’s sweet friend-to-be is playing with the angels. Little Ezra James was born, although he was already welcomed into God’s loving arms, Sunday, October 14th 2012 and weighed  7lbs. 15oz. and was 21 in. long. Michelle and I decided we know who the “little” buddy actually would have been. 


“For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
    neither are your ways my ways,”
declares the
Lord.
“As the heavens are higher than the earth,

    so are my ways higher than your ways
    and my thoughts than your thoughts.”
Isaiah 55:8-9


My heart hurts for the plans that I had made for that boy, and the dreams that I know his parents had for him. But, God had and has greater plans. I am confident that the Lord has a plan in this; which has been seen with the amount of lives Ezra has changed already. I am confident that the Lord did not make a mistake; His ways are not my ways. His ways are good; His ways are just; clinging to that promise. I am blessed by his mercy shown to Tim and Michelle even through this time. Thankful for the strength and peace that can only come from above.

Dear Blake,
Ezra is still your little buddy my love. 
Just last week mommy and you felt him move in his mommy’s tummy 
and the four of us had our picture taken together; the first of many. 
But, now your little buddy is watching out for you in heaven. 
He is waiting to meet you, to play with you one day for all eternity, how amazing is that? 
He never knew the sadness we are feeling right now, 
he only knows what it is like to walk and learn from Jesus. 
I just pray you would get to enjoy this life my sweet baby boy, 
but with a yearning for your perfect home yet to come. 
I pray that you would come to love the Lord 
as much as your mommy and daddy do.

Your little angel buddy, Ezra, will always be carried in our hearts.

Love, Mommy

October 12, 2012

Blown Away


Last weekend was a first at the Bernard house...we went on a triple date with our whole Nolz side of the family for the first time. We went to the Carrie Underwood concert, "Blown Away," at the Rose Garden. What an amazing singer she is! It was crazy to think that I had watched her sing on TV when she was just getting her start, and to see where her talent has taken her.  It was also Blake's first time with a babysitter...other than grandparents (bigger step for me I am pretty sure).  My parents, Jason, Blake and I and Kinsey and Gary. Kinsey and I were reflecting on the fact that last year at this time Blake and Gary weren't around...and now it would be hard to picture our family without them in the picture.


Hanging out with Aunt Kinsey and Uncle Gary :)
Before the triple date, Blake and I were up in Portland for the weekend for the annual Women's Retreat with our church. Although I didn't get to spend as much time enjoying the speaker, I did get to spend some sweet time with some friends, my mom, my aunt and my sisters outside of Salem. Kinsey and I met up with Carrie and some of her friends at IKEA...fun to start thinking about Kinsey and Gary getting married and getting their own place. :) I was also pleasantly surprised because Blake slept 8 hours straight both nights that we were in the hotel...something I think my mom and aunt also appreciated since they were sharing out room.
Girl's Lunch Out :)



It was an awesome weekend...and as you can see by Blake's many smiles I think that he had a pretty good time too. :) So thankful for the many blessings of family and friends in my life.
Loving this time in my life.

September 25, 2012

One...Two...Three!

Blake Denver - THREE Months
Three Months Old
First 'real' SMILE captured on camera :)
  • He has grown to around  12 lbs. 8 oz.
  • He is now wearing 3-6 month clothes. 
  • He is still wearing size 2 diapers.
  • He has started "putting himself to sleep" during his day naps and at night.
  • He goes down for the night sometime around 8:30pm, and will sleep until around 2am and then sleep until 5am...then until around 8am he wakes up for the day.
  • He slept 8 hours straight one night...mom loved that :)
  • He is constantly smiling, especially in the morning.
  • He loves playing with his dad when he gets home from work at the end of the day.
  • He loves taking "big boy" bath now and splashing in the water and bubbles .
  • He still likes to snuggle in the mornings after he has eaten.
  • He likes to read books with mom and dad before he goes to bed at night.
  • He is getting stronger, and is holding his head up much more steady.
  • He is starting to push with his legs when he is on his tummy.
  • He likes to suck on his fists...even both at the same time.
  • He has started squealing and giggling when he is really happy. 


It is such a blessing getting to watch our little boy grow and learn new things. He is a wiggler, smiler and sweeter than I ever could have imagined. I love the mornings when his tummy is full and he is full of smiles and cuddles for his mama. I love seeing his eyes light up when his daddy gets home from work...and seeing Jason look at his little boy. I love giving him baths; watching his little arms and legs discover that when he moves around the water moves. 

I love my little boy.