Cleft Lip, Family, My Story

Harvey, 365 days later


Harvey is ONE! I never shared his birth story, even though I typed it out a few weeks after he was born so I have decided to share it now!

DSC_1930ccMarch 31, 2014…. It is Kamden’s birthday!  I woke up feeling a little like labor was in the air.  But I wasn’t really sure.  I had been in pain for weeks and sweet baby boys position had just made me miserable.  I had an appointment that morning.  I found out at the appointment I was progressing, and was in between a 3-4 and 50% thinned. (sorry for all of you who that is way too much info for, but this a child birth post).

I left and went to pick up a few last minute birthday gifts for Kam.  Then I ran to Walmart and picked up a few groceries.  By the time I got to the house to eat lunch with the fam, I told Joel I  was really thinking I might go into labor that day.  He reminded me that I had all the others at 38 weeks and 2 days, and waiting until Friday (it was Monday) was much better for his schedule.  Of course we both laughed at that, knowing we don’t have any control. 

I had already been praying that I could wait until AFTER Kamden’s birthday.  I did not want to miss his day.  I was able to go to dinner and Goody’s for dessert.  I was having a few contractions throughout the evening but they were not consistent however by 8:45 when we were at Goody’s they were pretty strong.  When we got home we got the kids ready for bed and I went ahead and made sure all the bags were ready.  By 11:00 I laid down hoping that I could just sleep.  I had contractions 10  min apart for an hour and decided I should wake Joel up.  By the time he was awake enough to know what was going on, my contractions were now 3 minutes apart and we both knew we had to hurry!  We got to the hospital at about 1:00am (had to wait for someone to get here, then we had to drive to the hospital)

It was a very rushed process with lots of skipped procedure (like being admitted before stuff starts happening) But I was between an 8 and 9.  They called my doctor and by the time he got there I was ready to have a baby!  We will skip all the fun stuff, and jump ahead to 2:20am, when this perfect little boy arrived!  He was so gorgeous and wonderful!  Funny how all the chaos disappears and you just fall madly in love with this tiny baby they just laid on your chest!  He came into this world 2 hours after his big brothers birthday ended, on April fools day!  We didn’t text too many people at 2am but I just knew when we told people the next day they would think it was a joke!  We sent photo proof with our text the next morning! 


For those of you who may not know, Harvey was born with a incomplete unilateral cleft lip and a notch in his gum line.  He had surgery July 2014 to repair his lip.  He was so incredibly perfect before and I love looking at all of these pictures of him before his surgery!  He is just as perfect now though and I kind of feel blessed he has two smiles!  Melts my heart!


This boy is so funny!  He loves to play with his big brother and sisters!  Everyone spoils him rotten though!  He is not walking yet, but crawling and climbing on everything he can get to.  He has not been a big fan of baby food, table food, bottle OR sippy cup (mom is his favorite!) but he is finally coming around to table food as long as we let him feed himself.  He loves pizza, peanutbutter sandwiches, and ice cream. He is obviously a health nut!


I have said it so many times over the last year, but this boy has taught me SO much about life!  I don’t know if I will ever be able to express all of the things he has helped me to see.  All I know today, is that I am honored to be his mommy.  To watch him grow and learn.  To be his teacher and guide through life.  I look forward to holding his hand as he walks, helping him memorize scripture and showing him what it means to love Jesus.


My prayers are big for this little guy.  I pray God gives me all the strength and wisdom I need to be the best mommy I can be for him.  That he knows our love for him always and knows he came into this world perfect in our eyes.  I pray that he knows Jesus deeply and knows how loved he is by Him.


I’m ending it with this picture, because right now, he points at everything and says “dat” but it is also a good reminder that he is really ONE!  Look how smart he is, holding up one finger- hehehe!

Family, My Story

And… He’s 12!



I was a nervous 17 year old girl.  I had no clue what the next 24 hours would be like, let alone the next 12 years.  Joel and I checked into the hospital at 10:00pm to start the induction process the next day.  The night was a blur because they had given me something to help me sleep.  I woke up the next morning to find out it was time to have a baby without the help of pitocin!  Kamden was ready to be born and was not waiting on the doctor!  He came into this world quickly into the nurses arms and peed all over her! That sweet 6 pounds 10 ounce baby boy stole our hearts immediately!


I would love to say that the adventures motherhood have been easy, but any mother knows that is not true!  However, I am incredibly thankful that God has extended me so much grace and love all these years!  I am beyond blessed to be a mother and although I became a mother very young, I am grateful for all the things I have learned through the trials of being a young parent.  There have been many hardships over the past 12 years, but God has never wasted anything.


Kamden you are truly a blessing to our family!  Your hard work and willingness to help always amazes me.  You have a big heart and imagination.  You love endlessly and you care for your family.  You are smart (oh man you are smart- maybe sometimes too smart!) Your love for reading inspires me to want to jump into the book with you!  You can build things incredibly well and I know you will use your hands to create so many amazing things!  I love your smile and how it lights up your entire face!  Oh and your eyes- they are so genuine.  Your curiosity and thirst for knowledge is obvious. I have enjoyed watching God shape your heart and mold you into the young man He desires for you to be.  I can’t wait to see where God takes you!


Happy 12th birthday to our amazing boy!



Family, Farm Life

Pink Sparkly Cake

Sometimes in life, there are blessings you have to just be patient and wait for.   You know, those things you want so badly and then you finally get them.  Our third child was that way for me.  We had 2 wonderful, healthy kids but I just knew we were not done.  The husband on the other hand, well it took more like 6 years to convince.  By the time he said yes, my heart was exploding with joy.  When our sweet Garner Reese joined our lives, we were all (the big kids included) just beside ourselves.  She was so perfect and amazing!  

I honestly can’t believe it has now been 2 years since she arrived!  She has kept us laughing and smiling every day for these last 2 years.  She is truly a joy.  She talks our ears off, has the wildest imagination, and really does say the funniest things.  Her facial expressions are sometimes just too much.  She is smart- yes I know, everyone thinks their kid is smart, so I am just one of those moms!  She loves pink, babies, shoes (especially her pink cowgirl boots), chocolate, playing with her big brother and sister, and puppies.

In the week leading up to her birthday, I asked her “Garner what do you want for your birthday?”  she yells “CAKE” Well, that is easy enough right!?  I said “oh ok, just cake!” and she said “ummmm….. pink cake…… with sparkles”  Really?  This little lady who is a few weeks shy of turning two just requested pink, sparkly cake?  Well ok then!  

I had already planned the party.  I had decided to go “Simple and cheap”  Well, if you know me, simple doesn’t usually work for me, even when I try.  I was going to make a few simple decorations and bake some cupcakes myself.  The invite list was a little long…..   So, it ended up being bigger then I planned, and I spent way more time and money on it then I would have liked.  The day of the party, we had some unexpected bumps and all the things I had planned didn’t happen,  BUT, she had a blast and that is what matters, right!?!?  

Here are the details.  We decided to go with a Farm Fresh theme.  She LOVES our farm animals and that her daddy takes her to see them all.  She kind of loves her daddy.a little.tiny.bit. 

Farm animals don’t always do what you ask them to, so the photo shoot for the invitations was not what I had hoped, but they turned out adorable any way.  


We decided to rent a location for the party because weather is unpredictable this time of year and we weren’t sure if we would be able to do an outside farm animal party.  We basically had one big room with tables and chairs and plenty of room for the kids to run and play.  

The cupcakes (my crazy self made a little over 100 of these….. yes I am nuts and I will not ever attempt that again!)  They are not perfect but they tasted pretty good so I guess was a win.  AND, The icing was pink, with sparkles so Garner was happy! I just brought crates to stack the cupcakes on, a framed invitation, an adorable sign I painted/helped paint at Cross My Art, and a lace table cloth. I used a fancy paper cutter to make the cupcake toppers and cupcake wrappers.  Luckily, my good friend The Cookbook Queen has all kinds of helpful things, like the fancy paper cutter I can borrow, sparkle for the cupcakes, AND amazing recipes for frosting! Image

Garner was not so sure about everyone singing to her.  She kind of just looked a little nervous, but then blew that candle out and started enjoying that pink sparkly cupcake she had been waiting on so patiently.  Image

I also used the fancy paper cutter for this banner.  The lighting in this room is terrible, but you get the idea.  I used some vintage looking papers on the banner. Image

So what did we do for entertainment?  Oh My list was long- but then I got tired and gave up.  I ended up with two planned activities, which were both so simple but I figured I was trying to appeal to 2 year olds, so it was ok.  The first one I had seen on pinterest.  Basically you blow up balloons, and make them look like pigs.  We did this very simply by cutting out snouts and drawing eyes and a tail on with a sharpie.  Then you put them all in the “pig pen”.  The idea is that we scatter the pigs and the kids have to hurry and get them back in the pen.  BUT, the kids had so much fun with the balloons before we played the game, that we never played the game. Oh well!


The other activity was  custom coloring sheets that I purchased off etsy.  The kids seemed to love them too.  I paid $5 for 4 and ordered them from this shop.  Image


Garner had so much fun with everyone.  She smiled non stop!  She is still talking about her birthday party! Image

My sweet friend made Garner’s birthday outfit for me and it looked so cute on her!  I am just so thankful for this precious gift!  She is truly a blessing to us!