Hi There!

Summer has gotten the better of us and my trying to keep up and write has completely derailed.  We’ve taken some fun trips and been summering it up and working on all of Leo’s medical stuff.  Plus throw in each of all our things and grief and summer has almost given me a nervous breakdown.  July has been the absolute worst…hard as freakin’ hell.  Not going to lie, we’ve had fun, but it’s been really really tough.  I wanted to stop in and just write something…I miss this space when I’m away…so as my per usual, I’ve gathered some random thoughts for today.

Leo loves sitting on our counter tops…along with the rest of us…which I deeply love.  The counter was Everett’s spot.  He adjusted and attached and bonded so quickly with us, but mornings were always hectic and busy so his favorite spot was on the counter up above the chaos.  It was his little space to start his morning off and ease into his day with some breakfast and always a yogurt with a straw.  It was his spot and always will be.  We all just sit up there to remember him and feel a little closer to our boy.

He also really loves his food.  Like really really loves his food.  Truly and deeply.  He’s the skiniest little thing, but it certainly is not because the child ins’t eating.  He is happiest with his snacks.  One of his favorite snacks is a green smoothie.  He LOVES a smoothie, so much so, that when he nears the end of the glass and knows it, a fit ensues.  A crazy loud, adorable fit.

These two have a special little bond.  Solomon is crazy attentive to Leo and is always ready to help him in any way he can.  Sol was the same way with Everett and I think he feels that extra little connection to Leo too.  It’s one of my most favorite things to watch.  They are quite smitten with one another.

Sure signs of summer break:  Backwards hat wearing, all the game playing and swimming at friends’ pools.  Only 2 weeks remaining and then it’s back-to-school.  We’re all in a little shock and disbelief our time is coming to an end.  It’s like I’m screaming at summer, “Staaaaaaaaay!!” while simultaneously screaming, “Get the eff out of here.” 🙂

We get more and more little glimpses of Harper, Hudson and Solomon as teens every day.  I can just see it.  They will not stop growing and changing and getting bigger and more grown and more fun.  Give me all the big kids of the world.

In June we celebrated 15 years of marriage and 1 year since we sent Everett into surgery.  Our anniversary is now marked by a really heavy day…the last day Everett was fully Everett…a true mingling of joy and sadness.  It was hard and sad and heavy.  We tried celebrating and then it kind of crapped out on us.  That’s what grief does.  You can have the best laid plans and then sadness and anger and pain swoop in and derail it all.  But good plans gone awry didn’t change that Josh Kelley is still my total jam.

I’ve really not felt like myself for a while now and it’s been very difficult to navigate.  I know a big part of it is not creating.  I function and process my feelings much better when I can be creative in some way.  In an effort to help myself I started two new journal projects.  One project is a themed journal with a group of 11 other ladies.  I chose “strong” as my theme because this past year I’ve felt so weak and lost and flat out like I’m drowning.  I want to feel strong and capable and equipped and I’m excited to have a whole journal full of reminders of exactly what and how “strong” can look.

Leo is having an important heart procedure this morning.  We’re hopeful for some answers and news which will lead to a path for his special little heart.  I’m hoping to get in quite a bit of writing during our stay.  Hopefully you’ll hear from me a little more regularly with a little down time.

Thanks again for dropping by and reading.  I know blogging isn’t the “it” thing anymore, but I so love to type away on these keys.  Thanks for always being so kind and willing to read.


  1. ❤️

  2. Thanks for continuing to share with us! Big kids are super fun, aren’t they? But I sure love my snuggles from the littles! Enjoy your last two weeks of summer!

  3. Christie says:

    Sending live your way! ❤️❣️❤️

  4. Carrie Austin says:

    I love your blog. Your honesty, your creativity, your thinking……..and it’s a great diary for you along the way as well. I type letters to a special friend I have had for 32 years, we don’t speak on the phone, or email or facebook, it’s only the letters and we both LOVE it! There is something very cathartic (is that a word??) about typing/writing out your words/feelings/thoughts. I’ve followed your blog for so long now I don’t know what I would do without……..

  5. Oh sweet mama, you are STRONG. Putting one foot in front of the other when things are unbearably hard is the epitomy of strength. Don’t underestimate how much work that is! Strength is that you are letting yourself feel the feelings and still continue to move forward bit by bit even when it feels like you aren’t. It’s not stuffing the feelings and pretending that grief didn’t happen so that you look all perfect on the outside. Hoping this next year brings more lightness to all of you.

  6. Carol Short says:

    Always enjoy reading your posts and had missed hearing from you and your precious family. Glad you’re back.

  7. So blogging may not be the “it” thing anymore but I am so thrilled it is still your “it”. You bring so much to each of us who follow along side you and your precious family. You make me think, you challenge me, and I look forward to hearing amazing things about Leo and his warrior heart. Keep it coming….please.

  8. Toni :0) says:

    Really enjoy reading your blog. Wishing you all a great last two weeks of summer. My kids don’t return until Sept. 4th.

  9. Love your thoughts. Grief is so raw and needs let out!

  10. Thank you for sharing, as always! I love reading along. And Leo couldn’t be cuter in his little scrubs!! Sending you lots of positive thoughts for his procedure!

  11. Ah Laura I have missed you and your sweet family. So glad to hear you are all ok was worried in the quietness. Thinking and praying much for little Leo while he is in hospital xx

  12. You are the strongest person I know. Even when you feel weak. Love you.

  13. Capable you are, my friend.
    Strong in your faith.
    Stubborn in your love.
    True grit & God’s grace…a lovely combo!

    Miss you! ❤️ di

  14. Gina Lister says:

    Good to hear from you again. I always enjoy getting a peek into your family. Keep on loving others sister. ❤️

  15. Christy says:

    I love your blog!! I always look forward to your posts! Please don’t ever stop!!

  16. Jane Godbehere says:

    Who cares what is the “it” thing is. As your extended family, we look forward to every post so we can grieve with you and rejoice with you. I love that last photo of Leo. Spunky!!

  17. I love your blog so much. Thank you for sharing. Thank you for writing.

  18. I don’t always comment, but I read every single thing you write – and that picture of Leo in his blue scrubs hit me right in the heart. Partly because of the picture of Everett in his blue hospital outfit four pictures earlier. Thank you so much for sharing your boys with us. Holding onto hope with you.

  19. Brigette says:

    Isn’t it funny how people see things in us that we don’t see for ourselves? I totally get that grief and mourning and finding a new normal has made you feel weak and lost but I see you as anything but that. In the last year you’ve been navigating the sea of grief and helping your family navigate it as well, you went back to China and brought home another wonderful child. Weak people couldn’t do those things but you have. You are stronger than you feel. I see you as extremely brave and strong and my wish is that this journaling with help YOU feel strong again.

  20. He is simply the most precious thing and I can’t wait to see him in heaven.
    He’s so lucky… you’re so blessed.

  21. Heather says:

    I’ve been a reader for years. Keep it up. Your family is inspiring.

    Those blue scrubs and no slip socks gave my heart a jolt. My Lily was at Vanderbilt in yellow at about that age for several heart procedures. Now at age 11, we know an open heart procedure looms ahead of us and we pray for sweet healing before that day comes. Already an open heart baby at 6 months while in China without a mommy by her side, I know she is strong. But I’m not so sure how strong I am. I know you may not feel strong often but from the outside looking in… you are a picture of strength. ❤️

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