Sunday, November 3, 2013


For weeks before Winston turned one, I had wanted to take just a few minutes to get some pictures of him all dressed up in honor of the big day.  However, every weekend either one of us was under the weather, or we were moving, or we had events going on and so weekends came and weekends went with no pictures.  

We finally decided that picture session would be the Saturday after his official day of turning one.  I wanted to get some balloons and that morning we trekked off to Party City.  What a zoo Party City can be on a Saturday morning!  Luckily I was ahead of the masses, clutched my balloons and headed out into the windy day.  A huge gust came and blew my "1" balloon off into the atmosphere with gusto - and I was left standing there with the string in my hand!  Stunned, I walked to the car with colored balloons whipping around me and knocked on the window.  Benjamin rolled it down and I said, "My 1 balloon blew away... do I go back in?  It was $10!"  I saw the look on his face..."Ten dollars for a balloon?!"  I had confirmed again what he already knew to be true... I was indeed crazy!  

After piling the remaining balloons into the car, I turned around and braced myself for the line I was about to have to stand in.  The girl who had filled my balloons minutes before saw me come back in.  I said, "My one flew away.... I have the string, just no one!"  I must've look like a sad case standing there with a balloon-less string in my hand because she quickly pulled another balloon out, filled it up, did a triple tie on the string and handed it to me.  Just before I walked back out of the double doors, I clutched the balloon against my body and beat feet to the car!  

That evening, the weather was great, the lighting was perfect and Winston was his happy self...  What follows are photos that I can't help but look at over and over.  I can't believe how much he has changed in a year...
It has been truly a gift to be a witness to seeing his little personality develop.  I can already tell that he is going to have a great sense of humor!  He giggles often: at me, at Lulu, at Benjamin, at himself!  His giggle and all out laughs make my heart smile in the biggest way!
In that, he is truly living up to the meaning of his name: Joyful Stone.  He is such a pleasant little kid.  He is constantly waving at folks when we are out and about.  He chatters quite a bit and has been known to run around the house squealing his joyful noises at the top of his lungs.  Our prayer for Winton is that as he grows older his heart will be sensitive to the Lord and that he will rely on Him as the Cornerstone of his life.  
From day one, Winston's eyes have slayed my heart.  I will never forgot laying in recovery when the nurse brought Winston in.  She handed him to Benjamin.  Benjamin started shifting so that I could see Winston better.  I remember saying "Hello Winston, I'm your Mommy!" when his head turned so quickly and he just locked eyes with me.  That was the minute, in that one look, I knew that I was head over heels in love with this tiny human.  Nothing else mattered in that moment.  He was a beautiful creation, knit together by an Almighty God out of the love that Benjamin and I have for one another.  We knew that we would love this Winston Ace with everything we had.  Always.
We have been uber blessed in the fact that Winston has always been a fantastic sleeper and a wonderful eater.  Even in the womb, this kid slept through the night... either that or I am a super hard sleeper and was oblivious to the fact that he moved at night time!  He is a kid who can sleep just about anywhere in any noise level {even at a Monster Truck Rally!} and he most nights dives for his bed where Fishy and Hee'lan are there to greet him into night time adventures!  As far as food goes, we haven't come across a whole lot that Winston doesn't like?  He loves fruits and veggies (even broccoli and cauliflower!), eats chicken, pork, and beef like a champ; has been known to down some fish sticks and can put away Mum-Mums like nobody's business.  It has been fun watching him try to new things.  I am always wildly impressed by what he ends up liking!  
How can you not think that this face isn't just precious?!  It's his cute facial expressions, even the ones where he is being pouty and about to cry, that I store away in my heart.  They are the reason I eagerly leave work at 3:45 every afternoon to rush and pick him up for.  I treasure each minute I have with him, even the ones when I have had a hard day at work and I'm exhausted yet he is busily walking around the room touching all of his toys, bringing them to me so we can play.  I love having "conversations" with him.  I am mesmerized how he picks up tonal inflections and mimics them, how he is starting to form words and put meanings with them.  He is a champ at pointing and can say what sounds like "What's this?" when wanting to explore something new.  I love how we can sit for a good while with one toy or cuddle on the couch.  Bath time is hands down one of my favorite times of the day.  We sing, we splash, we laugh!  These moments don't last forever and I often remind myself of such.  There are many nights when laundry piles up and furniture doesn't get dusted... but man oh man, did we play our hearts out!!
Clapping is one of Winston's favorite things to do.  We clap when we're done with dinner.  He claps when he sees Lulu.  He claps while he laughs!  I hope that it means he will grow up to be an encourager.  Encouragement is such a powerful language to be fluent in.  My mom was a wonderful example of encouragement and I hope to be the same for Winston.  It's important to me that he not only knows how to support and come along side of those he loves, but that he has a heart for helping others to know and love the Lord.  I pray that he knows deep in his bones that Benjamin and I are his biggest advocates.  That he knows that we love him fully and completely.  
It's hard to imagine that one tiny life could change mine so drastically.  It has been a phenomenal year.  A true adventure.  It's true when people say that you don't really get what it means to be a parent until you actually have a child that is counting on you for everything.  Everything.  There have been times when it's not easy, but man... is it worth it!  Benjamin and I are looking forward to the next year and the next and the next and so on!  I am so thankful and honored to be a part of Winston's story, his legacy and that I get to have front row seats to seeing the future that God has for him unfold!  Mommy and Daddy love you Little Bug! 

"Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for He who promised is faithful" 
Hebrews 10:23


  1. What a great testimony to the love and power of God in all your lives! Love you lots, guys!!! Gillxx

  2. He's absolutely perfect! Loved this post...and loved reading your hopes and dreams for him. He's going to impact the world GREATLY!

  3. So cute and what a twinkle in his eye!

  4. He is adorable! Loved your Christmas card and getting to catch up through your newsletter :)


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