Life’s Celebrations

The last couple of weeks have been fraught with much emotion and difficulty. We have been completely depleted from the great loss of a beloved family member. Being forced to say our final goodbyes has amplified greatly each temporary goodbye as so many of our family members have come in and out of our lives over the last couple of weeks. Despite all of the heartache, stress, and general upheaval, I find myself marveling at the beauty of having children. Because even in the midst of weathering great storms such as these, they make the bright spots of God’s grace shine through so clearly. Each moment of tender love from my babies, and each milestone we reach is another moment of thanksgiving as we remember just how loving our God truly is.

Samantha is over halfway through her sixth year of life, and watching her grow in character and spirit is nothing but pure joy. She makes me incredibly proud, and after a whirlwind trip to Florida, she put in a tremendous amount of effort to finish up our kindergarten year with a flourish. For Samantha’s big graduation, we decided to create a little compilation of her newly acquired skills in the form of a “lapbook.” What makes me so proud is not only those academic skills that we can measure, but the tremendous amount of growth I’ve seen this year in her perseverance, determination, and sense of responsibility. School isn’t always enjoyable and enthusiasm naturally wanes, so there is nothing that makes me more proud than those times when Sam is not looking forward to her work at all or is daunted by the difficulty of it, but she pushes through to completion and does a great job as well. Her confidence has grown every day as she realizes just how much her hard work can pay off, and I couldn’t be more grateful to be able to be a part of this process.

I’m so very proud of you, Samantha Lynn, what a light you are in our lives!!

Look how much you’ve grown in one school year!!

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And here is our end of year creation! Click on any picture to make it bigger!





Not only am I enjoying Samantha’s growth, but I’m also savoring the love that I get from my sweet boy. I treasure up each moment of affection from my baby, and there is nothing sweeter than his little voice. Every “Love you, Mommy,” eskimo kiss, and sweet little prayer is balm to my soul, and I am grateful beyond measure for this grace from God. What a gift my precious babies are.


(Photo credit goes to Samantha for this one!)

One of the more intimate moments with my children that I treasure most especially is our bedtime singing. I hope I never forget the sound of their precious little voices full of such life! I tried to capture the essence of it with this voice memo (which is kind of long and unedited), in case there are others who might enjoy this little window into our lives:




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3 thoughts on “Life’s Celebrations

  1. This is a treasure! You are a treasure, Tori! Thank you for sharing these precious moments with us. Congratulations Samantha! You are such a hard working girl. I’m glad you like to read and learn. Cormac, you are going to be a talented singer like your mommy. I sure do appreciate all that you have done these last few weeks to support family. Everyone has commented on how beautifully you sang at Dad’s memorial. Love you!!! Think the world of you. Hugs to you and a HAPPY, HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

  2. What a gift you have given to us on your Birthday!!!! This is such a treasure! What a legacy you are giving to your children! Samantha has grown and developed so beautifully, her accomplishments are due to her diligence and your loving instruction, we are so proud of you both!!!! And Cormac is, oh my word, what can we say about Cormac?!? He is so priceless and I LOVE his singing!!!!! And I could not be more grateful for a son-in-law who sees the value of his wife being at home to love and instruct his children!!! I love you so dearly Matt, you are a WONDERFUL father!!!!!! And with Grammom, I wish my daughter you a WONDERFUL BIRTHDAY!!!!!!!!

  3. What a beautiful reflection and celebration. Your children are precious, Matthew and Tori. It is wonderful to see them confident and you proud. Your family is inspiring. Love to all five of you (well, six counting Annie). 🙂

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