Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Wow. Time Flies.

Wow, time is flying.  I cannot believe that one year ago today I held my sweet little boy for the first time.  I remember walking in to a room filled with nannies and toddlers and Dave spotting him lying on the floor playing with toys.  When you watch the video now Dave and I look so awkward.  We are passing him back and forth to each other because we were so excited and didn't want the other person to be left out.  I remember wanting to just look at him because all I kept thinking is "He's real!"  It was one of the greatest moments of my life thus far and a moment I will cherish forever.

Fraz, you have far exceeded any hopes, dreams and prayers that we've had for you.  You are a very special little boy and I am grateful everyday that God has allowed me to be your mom.  I pray that you grow up to love God and devote your life to bringing Him glory.  I love you.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

The Schmid Family.

Meet the Schmid Family.  They are incredible people and they happen to be some of our good friends.  They are in the process of adopting a baby from the Congo (YES!) and they are being featured on the Give 1 - Save 1 Blog this week.  Please go check it out to learn more about their family, their insane creativity and help them bring home that baby!

Seriously, click here now.  You won't regret it.

Saturday, August 24, 2013


My summer schedule with work is so busy that I haven't touched my camera.  This past week was my first week back to "real life".  We had lots of restful days and lots of fun family adventures.  I decided to take my camera along so I wouldn't forget this wonderful stage of life.

Here are some of my favorites (get ready...there's lots of photos):

Thursday, August 22, 2013

One year ago.

One year ago today, my world was changed.  I was on my way to a meeting for work when "the call" I'd been waiting for finally came.  It was our agency calling to tell me about our little boy.  A few minutes after I hung up the phone with her this photo was in my email inbox.  Best day ever!  I remember being shocked at how much I loved him instantly in that moment.  I couldn't wait to have him in my arms.  

And now I'm the luckiest mom in the world.  I get to hang out with this stud every day.  I'm so thankful that God made us a family.

Celebrating today and praising God for his blessings.

Saturday, May 4, 2013

What we Know 3.0


You are getting so old!  Stop growing. are no longer a baby but a little boy.  I wish I could freeze time.  You are learning new things everyday and surprising me with what you know all the time.  I'm so thankful for you in my life.

You officially started walking on April 25 (more than 10 steps).
You love to cheers your drink.  At first you didn't take a drink after you would cheers, but now your getting the hang of it.
Your noises are starting to sound more like words now.  You try to repeat almost every word we say.
You get bright eyed and shout "Home!" anytime we walk in the door.
You love to go outside, especially to the park.
You tried sushi and a hot dog from the stand in the park and like them both.
You love to watch airplanes and birds flying in the sky.
You shout "No, no, no!" to any dog or squirrel you see thanks to your friends Tye and Kali who taught you that when they were babysitting.
You learned how to drink from a straw.
You transitioned from formula to milk with no hesitation, fuss or question!
You LOVE to read books these days.  Your favorites are written by Dr. Seuss and Sandra Boynton
We took our first visit to the library.  It didn't go over well because you like to be loud and crawl around everywhere.  We'll try again soon.
You learned how to fold your hands to pray.
You are absolutely obsessed with the beach and sand.  You don't even pay attention to me when you are there because you're so preoccupied by eating the sand and people watching.

I love you and I'm so proud of you.



Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Spring Break.

Every year since I was a freshman in high school we have gone on vacation to Destin, Florida over spring break.  Before Destin we never vacationed at the same place.  We did a lot of camping growing up and it was my parents goal to show us the entire US before we graduated from high school.  We got pretty close to accomplishing the goal but after discovering Destin, we were hooked.   I have so many memories there with my family and friends and I was so excited to bring Mayes to start his memories there as well.   We had a great trip, beautiful weather and great company.  Here is our Spring Break in photos.

First time touching the sand.

Obviously he loves it. 

He even thinks it taste good.  He just kept eating it...weird. 

Fraz loved the pool.  He kept sticking his face in the water. 

Pimpin ain't easy.

Easter Morning

 Nama and Fraz

The gang. 

 Easter egg hunt.

Papa's helping Adler. 

Nama's helping Fraz.

 Playing chase in the commons area.

Tired from chasing Papa!

 Mayes' first bike ride and it was a success.

 The wonderful parents, grandparents and vacation planners.  

Thanks for a wonderful trip!

Sunday, March 31, 2013

Happy Easter.

 He is risen.  

He is risen indeed.
Happy Easter.  Hope your day was filled with joy, hope and celebration.


The VanWinkle's

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

what we know 2.0


You've been home for just about three months and it's crazy to think about how much you've changed in that time.  We've loved watching you grow and develop and seeing your personality come out.  We are so proud of you.  Although your changing everyday, here's what we know about you at this moment.

  • You do a speedy crawl when we yell "Go, go, go..."
  • You dance on command.
  • You know how to blow your nose.
  • You love to talk and try to say lots of words.  Some of the words you know are Mama, Dada, ball, more, all done, bye, papa, night night, bottle, nose, mouth and many more.  You try to say new words every day!
  • You think its really cool that you know how to wave and say, "bye, bye."   I think it's time for me to teach you a little about Nsync.
  • You are getting more opinionated about the food you like.
  • You put your hand up to your mouth to tell me when you're hungry.
  • You lick your fingers like there's chocolate on them.
  • Your favorite foods are blueberries and grapes (Pad Thai might be on the list soon).
  • You are finally getting more teeth.  Your top two teeth are popping through now.
  • You laugh for no reason when you're all by yourself.
  • You have become very fond of your blanky.
  • You can stand all by yourself.
  • You're cruising furniture like it's your job.
  • You don't like sleeping with a night light.
  • You like to throw food on the floor when you're eating.
  • You are obsessed with spoons of any kind.
  • You fake cough after you hear others cough and you usually cover your mouth (I will take credit for that).
  • You have a joyful heart.
  • You know that the University of Michigan is the team we cheer for the in the VanWinkle household.
  • You shout "Yay!" whenever you are excited about anything (a minimum of 10 days).
  • You have quite the arm on you and love to play catch.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013


Dedication seems like a never ending process as a parent.  You have this child that you love so much and you control so much of their every day life that sometimes you feel in control of their entire life.

You forget that,

God is the one that offers them grace.
God is the one that allows them to be in your family for however long he desires.
God already knows who they will become.
God already knows what He will say to them as they stand before his throne.  

And I often forget that without God, my child is nothing.

There have been countless times that I've prayed for these truths to be on my mind throughout each moment in my day.  There have been countless times that I've prayed for my heart to fully give my son to the Lord.  I pray that this desire never dies and that these prayers continue for the rest of my life.

In the beginning of March we publicly dedicated Fraz to the Lord in front of family, friends and our church community.  It was a great day of celebrating his life and our future hopes for him as a Christ follower.

The Missio Dei crew.

Yep, he's crying, I'm laughing.  Awkward and memorable all at the same time.

We had time to share with the friends and family that came to support us our hope and prayers for Mayes' and the man he will become.

Everyone in our group wrote on a rock their hope and prayer for Mayes.

 Our family.

 Surprise visit from Aunt Janni and Uncle Kevie.  So glad they could be there.

 The Grandmas (Nama and Grammy)

 The after party:  jumping on the bed.

 The girls.

 I hope I daily dedicate Fraz to the Lord and count each moment that I have with him as a gift from God.  

Wednesday, February 27, 2013


This past month has been pretty crazy with all the visitor's we've had!  Mayes has done amazing with the revolving door of our home.  Here are some pictures of all the people he's hung out with the last few weeks.  Be warned, here are a LOT of photos.  I couldn't decide, sorry!

Mayes and Cousin Kru

Cousin Adler teaching Mayes how to cause trouble.

Our sweet friend and neighbor.

A shared birthday celebration with Papa Schupra.

His first time eating banana cake (a Schupra favorite).

Meeting Uncle Phil and Aunt Becca.

Happy Birthday Papa Winks!   

We really weren't torturing them...I promise.

Meeting silly Uncle Andrew. 

Aunt Julie and Ben came for a visit!  We had so much fun. 

Sorry Ben that you have to wear that sweatshirt.  

Tanster and Mayser. 

Lavey, Tenny and Fraz.

Teeny, B to the L and Fraz.

The Apt.  (minus LJ, plus two minis) 

Tennyson, Mayes' new friend.


We said give kisses and this is what happened.  Bo, about to eat Fraz and Fraz blowing a kiss.  

Bo.  (I had to post this picture because he's so cute)

Gearing up for bath time!

We've been waiting for a long time to be able to take this photo.  So thankful for these boys!

Yep...they were riding the horse.  
(Read more about our time with the Parton's here)

We're so thankful for all the people that sacrificed a lot to come and meet Fraz and hang out with us.  We couldn't imagine life without each of you.