"but [she] treasured all these things, pondering them in her heart"

Somehow celebrating Jesus with J-Man this Christmas has made the holidays more enjoyable than I ever could have imagined.

Maybe it's the fact that we get the daily reminder of how incredible it was that God came in the form of a baby when we look at J-Man...
Maybe it's because we get to be a part of his "firsts" with him this year...
Maybe it's the fact that we get to invite this little guy into our own family traditions, doubling our joy...
Whatever the reason, we want this time to be a special time for him because it is a special time for us. The time when we get to celebrate our God coming to be with us. Bart and I are praying every chance that we get for him to know this truth early on in life.
Some memories to treasure so far from this Christmas season:
- We have been singing different Christmas hymns to J-Man before nap time and bedtime. As soon as I start singing, he focuses on me (maybe because he's hoping I'll stop? I must admit, I don't have the best singing voice out there!!) and seems to be listening to every word. "Silent Night" has been the song that seals the deal and leads him of into his blissful sleep...
- Any Christmas tree is an automatic hit in his book! The lights on them are so intriguing to him! He could stare for minutes (which is like hours in "baby time").
- J-Man wanted to make Mom a Christmas gift this year! I think he did a pretty good job considering it was his first go at it. Mom LOVED it!

 Many more memories to come!


a rolling stone gathers no moss

Well, the little guy has been with us for more than a month now! This is a record! We hope this is only the beginning though.
So Bart and I find ourselves calling him by the nickname J-Man regularly. So erase "Baby Swoosh" and "Baby J", J-Man is here is to stay on the blog as well.

Here are some highlights from our past month + together...

- J-Man cheered on the Auburn Tigers to victory after victory this season! He has not missed a game OR his chance to show off his blue and orange. Now the real test for his cheering abilities: cheering the Tigers on to claiming the title as National Champions!
- Reaching milestones!- we are now rolling over from tummy to back, carrying on extensive "conversations", and bearing more weight on his legs. Keep up the good work, buddy!
- Got to spend a few days visiting with my family! Don't you know he was spoiled rotten by the time they left :) Hey... that's what grandparents are for.
- Starry Christmas party! The kid got loaded down with gifts. Most of them are under our tree and I'm not sure if any other gifts will fit down there. J-Man, you are one blessed kiddo.
The party really was a sweet time. Families, mixed of biological, foster, and adopted, filled the church gym. The three things that touched me the most were- I was reminded of the strong community that Starry has. Starry is becoming family to us- providing us with a strong support network and simply put, fun times. I was also reminded that this was a picture of many individuals living out the calling of God in their lives: making disciples of Christ within their own homes. The third is the strong volunteer network that is present at Starry. Everything from donating gifts, to providing the man-power to wrap the gifts, to passing out Chick-Fil-A sandwiches, the community has stepped up to love on and serve kids needing just that. Bart and I were so humbled.

As a dear friend reminded me... hold your children loosely for they belong to God. We are attempting to do just that: love J-Man as God is calling and allowing us to do, but know that he doesn't belong to anyone here on earth ultimately, but to God. He's in good hands :)