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Hey sweet boy

You are one today.  One whole, very full, year old.
I really don't even know where to begin with this, so I'll just dive right in to the meat of it.

I LOVE YOU.  So so much.  I physically feel my heart ACHE when I look at you.
Every time. {yes even when you are crying or won't take a nap or clinging to my legs while I try to cook dinner}

Let's go back to the beginning...

I cried when I found out I was pregnant with you.  Not to give your siblings ammunition on your or anything, but I want you to know how much you have changed me.  I cried when I found out I was pregnant with you.  Cried because I was scared.
Almost all the big things in my life have been...A+B=C.  Of course there were normal setbacks and disappointments and misfires and teenage insecurities and MANY failed pursuits and unrequited loves.  But when it came to finding the love of my life, we found each other before we had to look.  We went to college.  We got engaged.  We got married.  We had two blissful years before deciding to plan a family.  We planned and got pregnant.  We had a baby.  We waited two wonderful years and decided to have another baby.  We got pregnant.  We had a baby.

And then we got pregnant.

And without a shadow of a doubt, it was THE best thing that has EVER happened to me.  For the first time I was made to give up my beloved CONTROL of my life.  Because I am NOT in control.  I always stated that I believed that, but it was just some principle I understood but did not comprehend
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You my dear are the most precious tool that God used implicitly to change my life.  I still cannot believe that God chose your daddy and me to raise you and your precious brother and sister.  I feel like I won the children lottery jackpot.  I am fully aware most mothers feel this way and it makes me proud and humbled to be in their company.  Parents who are "obsessed" with their children as blessings... given to us to use to His glory... make me the MOST happy.
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So, back to your story.  I was sick for 20 weeks, then just plain tired for the rest.  Emory was 5 months old when God made you and 7 months old when we found out about you.  She was 14 months old when your daddy and I got a MEAN {and I mean evil} bout of the stomach virus that married my nine-months-pregnant-body to the cold bathroom floor.  It also took us to the hospital at 6pm that night, where we were informed you were not coming... I was just severely dehydrated.

Again, you and God had other plans and the next morning at 8:55am, on December 11, 2011, your perfect little 8lb self came screaming into the world and I barely remember any of it.

And then you were ours, in the flesh.  You were an incredibly happy, beautiful, terrible nurser of a baby.  The fact that nursing was such a nightmare, after two successful experiences with your brother and sister, was so so hard.  You had RSV right after you started sleeping through the night and then you didn't start sleeping again {hardly at all} until after four months old.

Again, everything I thought I knew about being a mother or having an infant was challenged by you.  You taught me that I didn't know what I thought I knew.  You taught me what it feels like to not be able to do things by myself.  You taught me I can't do all the things I like to do, all the time.  You taught me it really isn't about me.

You taught me that all I really want to be when I grow up is your mother.
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If you didn't know any better you would think these weren't fabulous things to learn.
But they were defining things for me.
Character building, life changing, purpose giving things.
I learned to ask for help, let the little things slide, get over myself and get real with the fact that I had three small children and life as I knew it is not real life.

YOU are real life.

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You are my inheritance.  You and your brother and sister are the most important things that your daddy and I can leave as our impact on this world.
From the very beginning God made man and woman not to make a lot of money, or strive to the heights of "society," or fulfill the world's vision of success, or be perfect.  He made them in his image, to be fruitful and multiply, and share His gospel.  What better tools to fulfill His Will than the mighty blessings he entrusts us with from their very birth?

You taught me what was important.
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And Jacob, oh Jacob, what a PRESENT you are.  You are a shining light.  A happy, cherubic face of pure JOY.

You laugh at everything.

You love your brother and sister...well, you have always loved your brother and turn to his voice with a smile, but over the past two months you have started to love your sister too :).  At first you would pouty face and whimper when you heard her coming but now the two of you can just make a face at each other or throw a glance the other's way and you both crack up.  And now if she gets too close you just start slapping at her face like she used to at yours :).
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You cry if someone simply looks at you the wrong way.
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Daddy calls you a puddin'.  I call you my puddin pop. DSC_0027 copy bw
You love to be held and are happiest in my arms.  You, like your sister at this age, cannot get enough of your daddy.  I would not say you are independent at this point :).
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Since you were born, one of your favorite places to be is cheek to cheek.  Even now if I put my cheek on yours you will lean in and press yours to mine.  And you are never the first to break that connection.

You are cruising everywhere, standing on your own and loving it, two steps away from walking.
You eat anything I put in front of you and get frustrated if we don't feed you fast enough.
You still love to dance.
You always raise your right arm and make your hand do this star-trek type thing.  I don't get it.  But it's you.
You say DaDa when Daddy comes near but no momma yet.
You woof when asked what a puppy says.

Your skin is like BUTTA and is almost too soft to even feel.  Seriously.  {it's nothing like butter but everything like BUTTA}

Bottom line {yeah, after all of that there is a bottom line :)}...you are such a GIFT.  A little blessing that was unplanned and heaven sent.  Sometimes God's greatest gifts aren't just unanswered prayers, but answered prayers that were answered before you even thought to ask.
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I love you, I love you, I love you.

You will always be my baby and I will have to try very hard NOT to baby you as you grow up
I empathize with every "terrible" mother-in-law out there who turns Maleficent with the thought that her little boy might leave her...leave her for another GIRL
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I will follow you to college and show up unannounced on your doorstep with soup and Kleenex when you are sick

You will never NOT fit in my lap

I will tell your future girlfriends/wife about your incredibly soft baby skin and your precious tushie

And on your thirtieth birthday you better believe my sixty year old self will place my cheek on yours...
but this time let YOU be the one to break the connection.
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Happy first birthday baby
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Behold, children are a heritage from the LORD, the fruit of the womb a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior are the children of one’s youth. Blessed is the man who fills his quiver with them! He shall not be put to shame when he speaks with his enemies in the gate.
Psalm 127:3-5


  1. Happy first birthday sweet Jacob. I miss you and your round happy face- you are a blessing to all of us!!!!

  2. Oh my goodness. Such a sweet, perfect letter. My phone is probably going to be fried from my tears hitting the screen.

  3. So sweet!! Cannot believe he's already ONE!

  4. What a lovely lovely post!

    I absolutely adore this: From the very beginning God made man and woman not to make a lot of money, or strive to the heights of "society," or fulfill the world's vision of success, or be perfect. He made them in his image, to be fruitful and multiply, and share His gospel. What better tools to fulfill His Will than the mighty blessings he entrusts us with from their very birth?

    I needed this today. THank you!

  5. Talk about opening up the floodgate! Thanks for sharing this heartfelt post. Of course it speaks to mothers, but it speaks to parents and reminds us what a blessing our children are!
    Love this little boy! His laughter and his happy face just melt me.
    Happy Birthday, Jacob!

  6. This is lovely and so very true! Very well said....I hope your little blessings find 'in laws' as wonderful as Stephen did! :-) Still laughing out loud at Jacob laughing! Love these munchkins! Special hugs to our littlest one! Happy birthday, Jacob! Love ya'll, La

  7. SWEET post!! Love all the "real life" pictures - so precious! Happy Birthday Jacob! Amazing what God gives us even when we don't ask :)!!

  8. What a beautiful post. Hope I get to see this little guy and all of you very soon. They are all growing up so fast. Love you

  9. Mercy, Mama, you made me cry. Jacob is equally blessed to have you for a mother!! Happy 1st bday to your little puddin' pop!! xo

  10. Nat this post is beautiful- We love you Jacob and wish you the happiest 1st Birthday! Baby laughs are the best and Jacob is one amazing little boy. muah :)


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