jordyn's fourth birthday party...

today we had a little birthday party for jordyn. she turned four while we were at the beach two weeks ago. we had a chance to celebrate with some of her friends & they had a great time.

this is a picture of our friend, Will. I have to share the story behind this photo ~ Most of the kids were in the back of our house playing and the moms were in the living room. My friend Susan walked into the kitchen and found little Will at our kitchen counter, he had snuck 2 cupcakes and began to eat them. He was as quiet as a mouse and enjoying every minute of it.

the "theme" of the party was a craft party, we had a few crafts out on the table and the kids went to town, they had a great time - gluing and painting and making a huge fun mess!

here is jordyn with her yummy chocolate cupcake!!!

here is jordyn with her very good friend emma, they are gettin ready for present time.
both of the girls have july birthdays!!

jordyn received a lot of nice girlie-girl presents. she loved them all.

jordyn had a great morning!!

thank you to all our friends who came to celebrate!!!


back in the swing of things...

it is really hard to believe that school started today and it is time to get on a schedule, no more lazy days of summer, not that with three kids they are ever lazy.

this morning i started off my day with a quiet time, i got up a little after 6:00 and for those of you who know me, i am not really a morning person. it has been on my heart and i have heard God speak to me over and over about my prayer life and quiet times. they are pretty few and far between. i am always praying as i go about my day, but really sitting, listening and studying, i don't do that much. my dearest friend, amy and i are going to begin this week holding each other accountable for our quiet times.

we are reading "what happens when women say yes to God" by lysa terkeurst and doing the bible study.

the biggest piece of information that i took with me throughout my day was....
whatever God says do, do it!
and pair that with the scripture from Proverbs 3:5-6 "Trust in the Lord with all of your heart and lean not on your own understanding;but in all of your ways acknowledge Him and He will set your path straight.

those two things have stuck in my mind and heart throughout the day. i desire to be obedient to His will and have that be noticeable to those around me. i want to be able to tell stories (in my blog) that show obedience and how God will work in our lives if we follow what He says to do.

first day of school...

joshua had his first day of school today. he was so excited to go to school. it was a pretty smooth morning, he got up and got ready without a problem. ( not so easy for mommy, i must say). i am not really a morning person, but i started today getting up at 6:00 (ok, it really was 6:10) to do my quiet time ~ a new routine i will post about later!

he went right into his classroom, no looking back!!

when i picked him up he said he had a great day! he was excited and talked a lot about all the things he did today.

so far, so good... let's hope the rest of the week goes as smooth!!!


little bud

i realized as i was looking back through my posts, that i really haven't posted too much about jesiah. i guess it is because he is the go with the flow kid. he has always been so laid back and such a good little guy. jamil gave him the nickname "little bud" when he was just a few days old.

when he was born he was an easy laid back baby. in the hospital he was already sleeping 5 hours at a time, my nurses would bring him to me and we would have to wake him to nurse. he was such an easy going baby. he was happy and content. jesiah fit in our family perfectly as the third child, his older sister being only 19 months old and his older brother being only 4 1/2, we were thrilled that he just fit in and took the role of the baby. our hands were pretty full already.

to this day he remains to be such an easy kid. jesiah bennett turned two in march. he is so bright and has such a sweet disposition. he is always always smiling. in fact the other night we had our most favorite babysitters here and beckie said to me (as jesiah was standing in the middle of the living room floor surrounded by a huge pile of mega blocks that he just dumped with a big ol smile) that he is going to get out of a lot of trouble because when he is being disobedient he is doing it with a big sweet smile. she is right ~ as the baby and a sweetie, he is going to get away with a lot!

jesiah LOVES buzz lightyear and the disney cars. he loves to play with his brothers light sabers and dress up in his sister's princess dresses. often, jesiah is our quietest child only because a lot of the times he is off playing by himself while the other two are begging for attention (positive or negative). though he is a talker ~ he can talk ~ he speaks like he is four years old: in complete sentences and pretty clear. although when i talked to his church nursery teacher he said that jesiah is quiet and spends a lot of time looking at books. when he is home and with us he talks and talks!!!

jesiah loves to climb and run and jump. no surprise for this boy ~ he was rolling over at like 6 weeks old, he was climbing before he could walk and he escaped from his crib before he was 18 months old. he can get out of a high chair, booster seat or stroller with not a problem at all. we got a new (to us) set of bunk beds for the boys and there is not a ladder, we thought this would prevent him from climbing up to the top bunk, oh no , not this guy - he can climb from the bottom bed to the top using the footboards ~ no kidding!! little bud is busy!!

jesiah bennett is a little bit of a daredevil. once he has seen his sister or brother do something ~ he is ready to do it too! he loves the water and loves swimming. he had a blast in the sand and the waves at the beach. he has been putting his face in the pool and dumping cups of water over his head in the bath tub.

he is a snuggler and loves to be held! he is a momma's boy. and i love it!!

little bud is a big blessing in our life and family!!!


first grade open house...

jordyn and joshua with our friends madison and sidney breedlove.
who will be at union academy also!

joshua sitting on the rock outside of union academy!!!

so here is what joshua has to say about his new school and going to first grade...

he loves his teachers
he thinks they are nice and he thinks they are pretty - he is right
he loves his classroom
he is so excited about first grade
he even loves it better than wesley chapel (which is a tough act to follow)
he was excited to see not one but 2 friends will be in his class
he thanked me for letting him go to school there....

i told joshua to thank God, He was the One who answered our prayers and blessed us with a spot at union academy.

we had a great morning at the open house. joshua left there so excited about starting first grade. i was super duper impressed with his teachers. they were so kind and caring and welcoming. i look forward to working with them this year. i was very impressed with union academy as a whole. i am so excited to be one of the families there.

as soon as we got to school, we ran into lisa and josie carroll, who are friends from our old church. josie and josh have grown up in church nursery together. they are in the same class, i am thrilled.

it was a great introduction to a great school!

i will be sure to post about his first day...


jordyn's friends @ the beach

i realized i had this post saved as a draft from a while ago. and i thought i would go ahead and finish and post it!

when we were at the beach on our first day, jordyn made some friends !! she was smiling and waving to this group of four teenage girls who were sitting behind us. shortly after she began this the girls came over to say hi to her. in the picture above jordyn is in the middle of mailina (left) and sarah (right)!

all of my kids just loved the girls, every day the girls would come over and spend time playing with the kids or just talking! that was the highlight of our first week was looking for the girls, there were four of them, i will post a picture of all four of them with my kids in a later post!

i thought it was awesome that the girls made time to hang out with us! we truly enjoyed getting to know them!!!

some beach pics!


waiting on God

have you ever sat in an audience listening to a speaker or to your pastor and think that they are delivering a message written especially for you. that is what happened to me last week. i think that pastor steven wrote sunday's sermon just for me. it was like he knew exactly what i needed to hear. he talked about hearing from God and how sometimes it feels as if He has gone silent. he used the greatest analogy. he said when we are waiting on God, it is like a teacher waiting on his students to take a test. the teacher is silent and not giving the answers to the test, b/c he already taught the lessons the student's should have known. and he is waiting to see if the student's will pass the test.

i feel like i am in a waiting period, kind of like i am on the phone with God and he has placed me on hold. it was like He gave me only so many details to a scenario and then he placed our call on hold, he left me in suspense and with many questions not answered. i am waiting for Him to pick back up and complete my story!

one thing that i learned from pastor steven and have been able to truly reflect on this week is that the process of this waiting period is actually the point of it all. God knows we want the answer, the yes or no, the direction. But He is waiting to see what we will learn and experience during the process.

and as pastor said, you know when God is silent - He is up to something. just like children, i know that from first hand experience with my 3 little ones.

i always question and wonder if what i think i am feeling or hearing or desiring is truly from God. pastor gave 4 ways that you know that God is speaking to you. first is the scriptures, this is first and foremost ~ everything God is telling you to do will line up with the bible. second is what He is impressing on your heart ~ God does give us the desires of our heart as long as we are delighting ourselves in Him. if our desires are lining up with scripture and we are listening and pursuing a relationship with Him ~ most likely what He is instilling in us will be from Him. third, what do others say - and this has to be the "right" others, people who hold you accountable and love you and want the best for you. and fourth what do the circumstances reveal.

i am waiting on a lot of answers to a lot of things right now in my life from small things to big things. here is an update to three things that have been in transition:

church ~ God led us from a church that we were a part of for over 5 years. we put a lot of our hearts and our souls into this church. it was a start up church and we served in almost every area there b/w jamil and i. when God removed us from there, it was quick and very unexpected. He has led us to a new church home! we are grateful and so excited to be a part of this new church. we continue to look forward to see how God will use us there. the church shopping process was painless and smooth. jamil has been serving in the student ministry, and i am feeling led to serve along side of him!

school ~ joshua got a spot in union academy, he will start on monday. tomorrow we have his open house. i am so excited! he is excited and nervous. this was a huge answer to prayer. i prayed that God would put him there and God's plan was to do just that.

as for me, i am not going to be going to nursing school in the fall. my schedule was pretty rotten, i had classes at times when i had no childcare or preschool. so we decided to put that on hold. i am going to pursue a doula certification and take classes so i can to get my 3 remaining prerequisites out of the way and also work on a lactation consultant certification. this can be more flexible while i still have 2 out of 3 kids at home. i know God has a plan for where and how He is going to use me. i am passionate about young women and young mothers and sharing the love of Christ with them.

finances ~ well, this is our trouble spot and we could use a lot of prayer. when we left the church, we also left behind jamil's part time salary. so we have been in prayer to exactly what we need to do. we desire to get out of debt and each time we take a step backwards it makes that even harder. we need to replace his salary and are praying about the best way to do that. there are some things in the works and a few ideas that we are praying through. please pray with us that God will show us exactly what we need to do to get our financial house in order.

fun day!

today we had a fun day!! we are spending this week catching up with all of our friends. we went to my dearest friend, amy's house. i have known amy and her husband ken since we were in college. they have the sweetest, funniest, little boy, will. will is 3 years old. we already have an arranged marriage between him and jordyn. will cracks us up, he says some of the funniest things. he is a witty and smart little fellow!! he calls me aunt dawn and he says it so cute. and i have just loved him since the day amy and ken brought him home. they adopted will from russia when he was 6 months old. he is such a blessing to all of us.

amy and i spent a lot of time talking and catching up. and the kids played wonderfully together. they were thrilled to see each other!!

it is good to be home although i have laundry up to my ears and all kinds of stuff to do, i need to enjoy time with friends!!!


Busy Weekend

It was a busy weekend and so far a busy start to a busy week. We have been on the go a lot this weekend. Friday night and Saturday morning I worked on unpacking from our trip. Then we took the kids to the waterpark. On Saturday evening I met up with an old-new friend (long story for another blog!) and we stayed out way toooo late. We grabbed some dinner and then went to the new Starbucks in Indian Trail, needless to say they kicked us out and we stayed in the parking lot talking for a long time. Sunday, we went to church and then grabbed lunch with our good friends, the Prevettes Needless to say we wore out our welcome at lunch b/c the kiddos (3 mine and 1 theirs) were pruning the bushes outside of Fuddruckers. Sunday afternoon we napped and then Sunday night we went back to church for a special Praise and Worship night for volunteers - which was awesome! Today we went to Union Academy to get paperwork to enroll Josh and then we went over to our friend's house for a play date. In total we had 6 kiddos, 2 of each age - 2, 4, 6. Five boys and my little girl! It was a riot -- the kids had a crazy fun time. I think it literally took 2 hours to get them out of the house and into the van. I felt good knowing I am not the only mommy in the Charlotte area who has such a chaotic household and wild and crazy kiddos. But what a blessing it is!!!


beach + 3 kids does not = a vacation!

well, after a long 7 hour drive, we are back from the beach after 2 weeks. safe and sound. tan and rested. well, atleast safe, sound and tan apply. but i don't think that rested fits a mom who is on "vacation" with her 3 kids. let's just say that it was wonderful to be at the beach and to be relieved of some of my duties (cooking and cleaning for the most part) as a mommy, but managing 3 kids in a different environment with family isn't always easy or provide for a lot of down time for me.

since it has been 2 weeks since i have blogged, i will have to catch you all up on everyone in my j crew! i will download some photos from the beach as soon as i can find where in the suitcase my camera and usb are.

i did have a chance to do a lot of reading, thinking and praying. God did reveal to me a lot of things during this time. and i am excited to see how He works in our life!

stay posted for more blogs and pics in the days to come!!!


happy fourth of july

today has been a busy but fun day. jamil had off today and we took the kids to the free movies at the arboretum. then we went to chik fil a for lunch and ran a few errands before coming home. while the kids were doing their quiet time i ran around the house getting some things packed for our 2 week beach trip. this afternoon my parents and jamil's parents came over to have a cook out. jordyn's birthday is next week, and since we will be at the beach we celebrated it today. we will also celebrate it next week on her actual birthday at the beach, but this way jamil and jamil's parents had the chance to wish her a happy birthday - which in kid's terms means bring gifts! when we get back from the beach she will have a little party with some of her friends. every year we are at the beach during her birthday. i can't believe she is going to turn four!!

for her birthday this year, we started her barbie collection. she has had a blast this evening with them. i have to honestly say that i love playing with barbies also. i loved them as a little girl and will enjoy playing with them with my daughter!! barbie has changed since i was a kid, she is much more appropriate in size (bust, waist and feet) i remember reading or hearing about the way they used to make barbie, that her dimensions were so out of wack - her bust too big and her waist and feet to small, that if she were a real human she wouldn't be able to stand up. i am glad they have made those changes. although, the little shoes that came with some of the outfits do not fit her feet, very strange???

anyway, tomorrow we have a pretty busy day and then we leave for the beach for 2 weeks. i am going to take my laptop but don't know if i will have a chance to get on and blog!! if not i am sure i will have a lot to catch up on when i get back!


six -- going on sixteen!

on saturday night we went over to our new friends' (from our new church!) house for dinner. they have four most beautiful girls! as we were driving over to there house, my kids were asking about our new friends. when joshua found out that they had all girls and no boys, he was a little nervous and wondered who and what he would play with. i told him not to worry, he would have a great time.

we were greeted at the door by our friends and joshua was off, he and their oldest daughter hit it off immediately. they were chasing each other around the house, they were outside on the playset and playing soccer. after we ate, we went the kiddos upstairs to watch toy story 2. well, our friend went upstairs to check on the kids, when he came down he informed us that joshua had his arm around his new friend. they were sitting on the couch and joshua had his arm around her and when he saw her daddy coming upstairs, he took his arm off of her. then when he left, he put it back around her ~ we know b/c he purposely came back in the room.

i had tears in my eyes laughing so hard at my six year old son "putting the moves" on his new friend! it was all sweet and innocent, but yet it did make me think about how in the world he came up with that plan.

he gave his new friend one of his wristbands (that he loves). he also told us on the way home that she kissed him and that she was his new girlfriend and he wanted to marry her.

jamil and i just chuckled. although, i asked jamil if he thought we should have a little chat with him about his new love!

we didn't make a big deal of it, since they are kids and i know it was innocently do ne! but i do realize that it isn't too early for us to teach our son how to be a gentleman!

i do wonder if the roles were reversed and that was jordyn on the couch how jamil would have reacted.!!!