learning from my son

I am stubborn.  Strong-willed, whatever you want to call it… just ask my parents or my husband and they’ll agree in .2 seconds (while most likely cracking up laughing).  I can’t even try to ignore it.  I’m pretty sure this is why God gave me Cullen.  Bless him, he is an amazing little boy–AND he sure is strong-willed.  I pray that God uses that trait mightily, because ultimately I believe it’s a great quality that can help him accomplish incredible things.  Right now though, as we’ve entered the THREES (oh my) – I think God is just plain old teaching ME about myself.  And it is a tough pill to swallow.

Gracious, it’s hard to see ugliness come out in your child when you know it’s equally ugly in you.  He struggles with so many of the same issues I struggle with.  Therefore, I am constantly fighting the urge to get angry or upset when I need to practice patience and grace.  My will is stronger than his, sure, but the hardest part is giving him GRACE over and over again–staying calm and patient instead of getting worked up (which just makes everything fall apart).  I can’t tell you how many times I have to ask the Lord to give me an extra dose of strength, patience, and understanding because I can’t do it alone.  I fail often and it is humbling.  God’s teaching us both (probably me even more than him) lessons every. single. time.

I think I needed him for a son to fully understand how sinful and gross some of these traits are in me.  I’ve got to confess them and work on them.  I have got to stop acting like I can do everything on my own and don’t need the Lord daily, hourly… sometimes by the minute. 😉 Being his mom is forcing me to become softer, gentler, and more patient. I’ve had to ask my little guy to forgive me when I mess up more times than I’d like to admit–but we’re learning together.  I’m praying he changes my heart, & molds and shapes my will, as he does the same for my children.  This parenting thing is not easy – and I certainly don’t have it all figured out… praise the Lord that He forgives both of us and gives us grace to try again.

Cullen, my dear son… this may be a hard phase, but I wouldn’t trade you for anything.  You are a precious gift to me.  Each morning as I pray for God to give us wisdom in raising you and your brother, I also pray that no matter how many times we inevitably screw up, He’ll use you to further his kingdom in a mighty way.  I pray that your intelligence, determination, and character will be used for amazing things. I can picture the strong man you’re going to be when you grow up.  I just know He’s got some awesome plans for you… and I can’t wait to see what they are. {if we both survive the 3’s… just kidding!}  I love you, buddy.

USCIS appt & other good things

We had our USCIS fingerprinting appointments today. I got all nervous about it, but it couldn’t have been simpler (or faster-took less than 10 minutes! Thank you Charlotte) and all the people there were so sweet. Now we wait to hear if we’re approved.

Last week was a really tough week, for various reasons..but things started to turn around this weekend. I got to meet my new godson, sweet baby Jacob the miracle baby! He made it to almost 38 weeks after all (Abby went into labor at 29 weeks…none of the doctors could believe he stayed in there that long. Power of prayer, people!). He is just precious.

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Aunt Dee (our cousin Deanna) got engaged!! We’re so excited for them. And guess who will be making their ring bearer debuts?? Not sure I’ll be able to handle all that cuteness…

We’ve also been enjoying some time with friends… how sweet are these two?

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Lane has been sleeping the week away (as in, I’m waking him up at 9 am and he’s still taking 4 hour naps. Is he a teenager??)

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While Cullen channeled his inner Ethiopian (please please can my little girl have a crazy head of beautiful curls?!)

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And lastly, I got this yesterday-tell me this ornament isn’t the prettiest thing?? I love it so much.

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And this week/weekend is looking mighty promising with some wonderful friends flying into town! God knows when we need a pick-me-up 🙂

first day of preschool, 2012

Yesterday was the boys’ first day of preschool in the 3-year-old class, at their same church preschool from last year that we love.  We had signed them up to go 3 days a week, but after a great summer together (I’ll admit, I was worried–once I got used to having 2 mornings a week to get stuff done, I thought it would be hard missing it–but it really was a sweet summer with my guys) we decided to switch back to 2 days a week again.  In the MWF class they would’ve been in different classes and this way they are still together, too – I’ll admit my mama heart just wasn’t quite ready to separate them! (nor do I think they’re ready)  Anyway – we all love their new teacher and are looking forward to a great year – I mean we all know how much they love going to preschool.

Once again, they went right in and had a GREAT first day – they were so excited reading books when we went to pick them up that I wasn’t sure if they’d really want to leave or not!  Daddy gets to work from home all week because of the DNC being in town, so he got to come drop off AND pick up – what a treat! Love these guys. (this is their first day from last year, to compare 🙂  Look how much they’ve grown!)

Pieces of the Pyles 9.2.12

Our week… enjoying the last few days of “summer” before the boys go back to preschool. They were going to go 3 mornings a week this year, but my mama heart got all sentimental wondering how long I have with the two of them (it could be a while before we add another family member, or it could not be-but they’ll only be preschoolers for so long!) so we switched back to 2 mornings a week again-and this way they’ll get to be in the same class too. I don’t think they’re/we’re quite ready to separate 😉

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my “triplets” heading to the park – spending lots of time with our friend Eli while Miss Abby’s on bedrest baking baby Jacob!

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Discovery Place Kids, always a favorite

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my favorite little superheroes! love these boys.

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Man’s best friend.

Working on dossier paperwork and grant applications… Prayers for us to be accepted for some grants would be much appreciated-they would be such a huge help!

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Daddy’s been working really hard lately-lots of long days-so we’re thrilled to have him home for a long holiday weekend!

We’ve also been having some fun with our world map…enjoy this cute little moment talking about our journey to baby sister 🙂