life has this way of sneaking up on you sometimes…

If you had told me of the things I would be doing this year, of the people I would meet, the places I would go, and the things that would happen each day on this grand adventure of life…..I wouldn’t have believed you. We’ve had so many different things happening each and every day- I hardly know where to begin!

I guess I’ll start at the beginning- that’s a very good place to start. 🙂

In January, we were delighted to have the Wissmann family with us once again for a bluegrass gospel concert!

We thoroughly enjoy getting to visit with them every year and listen to the delightful music as they seek to minister to others. They are a huge blessing to our community and church when they come down each January!

February marked a change for me- I was starting to get an idea of what exactly I needed to do next, and the Lord brought a lot of clarity and direction to my life.

I knew that I needed to finish piano technician school, and I had so many ideas for different things I wanted to do and try…the interesting matter would be figuring out where exactly to start! I continued on with work and was reading and studying lots of different things.

Josh and Kylie invited us and Kylie’s family over in February for a fire and smores roasting…I so love smores, and the fellowship was delightful!

Of course, adventuring was still on the lineup on into February….we spent each week trekking up to Centreville for 4-H Forestry Bowl practice:

We saw lots of Centreville by day, and Centreville by night.

I started taking fiddle lessons from the amazing Mrs. Sharon Bounds!

And I took my first mandolin class as well!!

I did a little poll working:

And of course, a trip to Vulcan was in order as well. 😀

I never get tired of the beautiful view from there.

4-H was back in swing for livestock somewhat by March, so I took the siblings down to Auburn University’s meats lab for a workshop on different meat cuts and processing procedures. I LOVE road trips, and this one was no exception!!

Planning the route:

Headed out!

My meat lab participants… they were so excited to be there:

I picked back up woodburning as well, after a very long time of not doing any! I’m having so much fun with that….

We also decided to do quite a bit of kitchen remodeling. Here are some of the “in progress” pics:

And here’s a pic with it pretty much finished up. We are so loving the new floor, especially. You’ve never seen someone so excited to be rid of the white vinyl composite tile in their kitchen!! 😀 😀

After we had the kitchen remodel somewhat behind us, we celebrated National Sibling Day. Cause all the feels…we weren’t able to get everyone together, so I decided a bad photoshop job was in order. Because yeah…

This was the last sibling pic pre-Tobias…. 🙂 Oh, did I mention Tobias? 😀 He is my sweet and precious newest little sib!! 😀

Tobias’ day of birth began early…Mama had to be up at the hospital at 4am, so I took her and Daddy up there and dropped them off. It’s just easier to keep all the cars at home when Mama is having a baby since they wouldn’t be needing it anyways.

Mama’s labor ended up being very long, and Toby had gotten rather comfortable and wasn’t helping much with the labor process. He wasn’t really getting settled where he needed to be, and was causing little to no progression of labor.

Later that evening, I went ahead and came back up to the hospital. I had all of the luggage/supplies for after the baby was born in the car, and I didn’t want my parents to be without what they might need. We were also all figuring that labor would move a bit faster. I am so thankful for the time I got to spend with my parents during that time, and for being able to watch them together….my mama’s love for Toby, my parent’s love for each other….the prayers that were being offered up on Mama and Toby’s behalf… watching them, I was realizing once more that if it was the Lord’s will for my life, I really wanted to be a wife and a mama. I had been considering signing back up for a particular dating website for a while, and made the decision that yes, I wanted to try that again. So, whilst waiting during the labor process, I went ahead and filled out the application to sign back up….(more on this later. 🙂 )

Late in the evening, it was decided that the safest thing to do would be for Mama to go ahead and have a C-section. There was some concern that both Mama and Toby would end up in distress if the labor continued for too much longer, especially since her water had been broken since early that morning.

That was my first time to be at the hospital when someone who is dear to me is rolled out for surgery. After they took my mama to go and get her prepped and ready for surgery, I just sat and absolutely bawled. I know that C-sections happen all the time, but this was *my* mama….I’m thankful for my dad, who gave me the biggest hug and told me everything was going to be just fine, and for a friend of mine who was texting me through the evening reassuring me everything was going to be just fine…..

After about 10 minutes, they brought my dad scrubs and he began to get ready to go and see mama and get Toby….the whole surgery didn’t last more than 1/2 hour. When he came back, he had Toby with him, and he had been able to talk to Mama and knew everything went well and that was doing wonderfully.

And Toby…..<3

I spent the next couple of days driving back and forth to the hospital so that we could visit with Mama, Daddy and Tobias.

In between driving back and forth to the hospital, making sure things were running smoothly at home, and getting the necessary shopping done, there was quite a bit of coffee consumed.

It was finally time to bring Mama, Daddy, and Tobias home from the hospital.

During the duration of Mama’s pregnancy, Jackson was telling everyone that he was pregnant too….with a black chicken. We thought it would be quite funny if a black chicken came home from the hospital with Toby, so I made one! Mama wrapped it up in a blanket and put it in the car seat with Toby. We brought it home to the proud papa:

After Tobias was born, life started settling back into a routine….

(to be continued)

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