"Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you."  I Thes. 5:18

It has been 4 weeks today since Lily's palate surgery.  A week ago today Lily had her follow up appointment with her doctor.  Yesterday was 12 weeks since Lily was placed in our arms for the first time.  My heart is overflowing with gratitude and thanksgiving for that all God has done and continues to do in her life. 

thankful that Lily's squinty-eyed smile is back!

thankful for a great report from her doctor...

Lily's palate has closed completely and Dr. Buckmiller felt great about her healing.  She said it will be another 3-6 months before she will be able to use her palate correctly as it continues to heal but we are praying that she will break the mold and start sooner! 

at Lily's follow appointment with Dr. Buckmiller and nurse Emily

Made a stop on the drive home from her doctor's appointment
Liy's first "real food" (Baskin Robins counts right??) 

this one says it all...

thankful for real food and family meals together...

Lily got the green light to begin eating soft foods last week.  Starting today we can move into giving her most other foods as well.  Needless to say I was thrilled to put away the blender that had become our friend for 3 weeks (although Lily did enojoy her role of official liquifier by pushing the button everytime!)

We all love our family time together so having Lily join us again for meals is a special treat.  It had been so long that Spencer even said yesterday that it felt strange being able to eat in front
of her.  

eggs are coming her way!

thankful for no more no-no's...

Lily was able to remove her no-no's during the day last week and starting tonight she won't have to wear her football gear to bed!  She has not complined ONE TIME over the past 4 weeks about ever having these on her arms.  I'm sure I would NOT have been so cooperative if I couldn't bend my arms to get what I wanted.  What a blessing it has been not to fight her on this, in fact when she sees them she still points to them and wants me to put them on!  Think they will go in the closet today. 

happy little girl even with her no-no's
getting ready for bed with her football arms...still smiling!

thankful for family and friends...

We are so grateful for the gift of family.  My parents came from SC and Michael's mom traveled with us the long 8 hour drive for Lily's surgery.  My parents stayed a few days after our return home and Dad became our "assistant Sherpa" while Michael was at work.  Let's just say the he knows everyone at Publix better than I do!  My mom rocked our angel so I could get some sleep at night and Michael's mom who has a background in nursing kept me calm during the days after Lily's surgery. 

Our friends Marcus and Katie graciously opened their home to us when we came to town for surgery and our follow up appointment.  Her parents even allowed us to stay in their condo when Lily had her surgery.  It gave us little piece of home while we were away during a difficult time and it was such a blessing...not to mention the added treat of having a little girl time with my friend Katie!  They have 3 adorable little girls who doted on Lily and shared all their toys with her.  What a gift they have been to us. 

my parents are just a LITTLE smitten with Lily!

thankful that Lily loves her big brother...

Lily's eyes light up everytime she sees her big brother!  He makes her laugh and he is a great example of love to her. 

this just make me smile...

at Spencer's promotion...doing the double "squinty-eyed" face

thankful that Lily loves books...

Books have been our friend from the first night in China.  We still read her two favorites every day that we took with us on our trip.  She is learning more about words and recognizing different animals and objects...I love reading to her and watching her grow. We went to the library for the first time yesterday and she couldn't stop pointing and making her happy noises when she saw all of the books! 

Gaga reading Goodnight Moon...a new favorite

thankful for her curious nature and desure to figure things out...

Spencer and his cousin were buidling a  roller-coaster a few weeks ago and Lilygot  right in on the action...she watched everything they did with amazement.  Of course her "help" made their job harder at times but they were a good sport about having her by their side.  I served up some chocolate milksakes during the fun which made everyone happy!

thankful for the whispers of God...

The night before Lily's surgery we were having dinner at my friend Katie's house.  I walked by a little table they have for their girls to do homework and art.  I looked down and noticed some homework that her oldest daughter was working on that day.  I immediately got my camera to take a picture of what I saw...

Joshua 1:9..."Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid nor dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go." 

Tears welled up in my eyes for this was one of those moments when I felt as if God was speaking right to my heart...

the words on this page were one of hope and comfort...peace and promise...

they were a reminder that He would be with me during Lily's surgery...hours away from home...in every moment of every hour...in whatever lies ahead for our little girl. 

This verse is also one of our first family verses that we learned together over two years ago.  Isn't is just like God to choose to speak His truth through the homework of a little girl.

thankful...so VERY thankful

*I have several posts I want to share...hopefully they will come sooner than this one did!  thank you for your prayers...as you can see God has answered in abundance...



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