While Chet was writing blogs, managing the home front and on Daddy duty this past weekend, I was able to attend the third annual Hope Mommies Winter Retreat at the Haven River Inn in Comfort, Texas. I feel as though there are too many facets about the retreat that I was challenged by to give it a sufficient write up. Especially since I am rocking a baby while typing. Erin describe it beautifully...check out what she had to say!
I am typically early to arrive anywhere by nature, and Friday was the same. I was the first hope mommy to arrive on location, which gave me some quiet time soaking up the beauty. A river flowed through the property (incidentally a river has been a part of every retreat), to me descriptive of God's living water renewing us each day. The weather was dreamy for February in Texas. It was the exact place God chose to be a part of the healing in 31 lives.
The weekend was full of tears, laughter, new relationships kindled, old relationships deepened, delicious food, powerful testimonies, new babies' refreshing smiles, late night talks and prayers, reaching out to others through pain, worship... and HOPE. This year's "Marked" theme is the perfect description for Hope Mommies. Chelsea, Mary Beth and Erin's words of wisdom, and all 31 journeys shared were each a testimony of how God is revealing Himself through our missed children.
God chose a tender, meek and beautiful woman to be Gwendolyn's mom. I am so glad she said "yes" to the Lord in such pain 2 1/2 years ago.
Chelsea shared a video by Francis Chan you must watch! I know I won't be able to form all my notes and thoughts into a good blog, but I think everyone needs to watch this 5 minute video. I want the way I am Marked to be living for the eternal.
Additionally, I can add to Erin's words that we all didn't sleep much...if at all. And that is how this week has started...
I arrived home Sunday night to a sickly Grey, who ended up at the doctor on Tuesday. She is still under the weather and not her usual happy, busy self, fighting off this nasty virus. I am selfishly enjoying the extra snuggles though, as she is usually far too busy to stop and lay in my arms. Chet captured the moment I walked in the door Sunday evening, and she has nearly remained exactly like this for 5 days now. Which is probably nice since her parents are sickly too:
Because I didn't do the blogging last week, I didn't get to mention the official stats from her "9 month" well check on the 29th (she was older than 10 months). Grey weighed 17 lbs. 9 oz. (20%), was 27.5" long (40%) and had a 17.2" head (50%). Dr. G. said she was physically and socially like a 12 month old, and that she was in excellent health.
This week has been TOUGH for me. I am not okay with my baby being sick. I am used to taking hundreds of photos of my smiley, happy, active princess, but that just hasn't been possible. She has been sleeping and not feeling well enough for photo shoots (and bows), so I just have one blurry photo to share from this morning.
My beautiful little 46 week old, playing with an empty Kleenex box (we have plenty of them around here):
- She had 3 top teeth pop through in one day. That's not really fair considering she already didn't feel good. ;) That adds up to 5 teeth, and she is grinding them all the time. YIKES. I hope this doesn't become a permanent habit.
- She is waving bye-bye, clapping and communicating with baby signs. Every time I say "YAY!" she claps and screams! It's so stinkin cute. :)
- It is a rare thing to see her crawl, as she has discovered how much better walking is. She is nearly running now!
- She is so, so very strong willed. Oh my. She even decides to hold her breath and pass out when she doesn't appreciate something we have told her to do/not to do. Whew. :)
That is our prayer.
Let all those that seek thee rejoice and be glad in thee: and let such as love thy salvation say continually, Let God be magnified. Psalm 70:4