ten thoughts on a wednesday |30|


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we leave for morocco on friday morning and i am intensely excited … and intensely nervous about how much we are going to miss moses. we are so lucky and happy to be able to take off - just the two of us - on a fantastic trip to a fascinating and beautiful (and warm!) place, and i just hope the experience won’t be spoiled at all by the depth of longing i know we will feel to hug our little boy! the past couple of days i have had moments that have literally taken my breath away when i think about being away from the little mo for ten whole days. luckily we have absolutely zero worries about his wellbeing while we are away - ian’s mom is seriously the awesomest (and we are so, so grateful to her!) - but oooooh man are we going to miss him. 

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we have had three awesome baby-free date nights in a row! a couple weeks ago we went out for deeeelicious pizza at a really lovely restaurant on high street kensington (and maybe got mint oreo shakes from burger king on the way home…); last week we had a special evening out on valentine’s day (more on that below); and last night we saw aladdin the musical together (and maybe shared a mint cookies and cream shake from shake shack on the way home…). we’re really on a roll, now headed out for a ten day long baby-free date :) we feel like it’s a good idea to get lots of this stuff in before life changes a lot when baby number two comes along. 
(also randomly pictured above - a little baby bump selfie in a moses-streaked hall mirror, and a snapshot from my walk through decked-out chinatown on the way to the theatre)

today i went to a yoga class and couldn’t stop thinking about how awesome the human body is. there were many different bodies in the class - young and old, toned and plump, rigid and supple, all moving alongside my own body, pregnant with a tiny, kicking baby body. beating hearts, working muscles, breathing lungs, seeing eyes. i believe that possessing and taking care of a physical body is central to our purpose in life as humans and i’m just amazed by all the biology and anatomy and physiology that works together so beautifully and allows us to do and experience so much. and pregnancy! It’s so, so, so miraculous, and i am tremendously grateful to experience it. 

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on valentine’s day morning, i woke up very early to make my traditional heart-shaped cinnamon rolls. for some reason the dough didn’t rise well for me this time around, so they were way too dense … and they didn’t look too pretty. but this tradition is so special to me. grandma and grandpa had helped us do a little “heart attack” on our living room wall the weekend before (which you can see bits of in that cheeser grin picture of moses above), so our flat was feeling pretty festive on february fourteenth. that evening, i met Ian near our old flat for a surprise date that he had planned. it turned out to be going to beauty and the beast in concert - a showing of the film with a live symphony orchestra playing all the music. to be honest, i initially thought it would be kind of lame and that i'd wish we’d saved the money and just watched a movie at home! but it was actually spectacular. you don’t realize how much music is in a film like that, or how magnificent it really is, until you hear it performed live! i was pretty spellbound by the whole thing and it was an awesome sensory experience. 
after the show, we walked back to the tube across golden jubilee bridge, and the city was perfectly sparkly over the thames. it had rained all evening but had just let up, and the air was so fresh, the night so crystal clear. we stopped in the middle of the bridge to kiss (because duh, valentine’s day…!) and it was one of those glistening moments in time when you just are so full of contented happiness - a moment that i soaked in and then tucked into a permanent pocket in my heart. i am so so so so so so so so grateful for my forever valentine. my husband is truly my best friend, my deepest love, and my perfect partner. sometimes i still can’t believe we got married and are sharing this crazy beautiful life. 

the saturday before valentine’s day i went to a fun galentine’s dinner with some girlfriends: 6ca5fd51 41c2 40d1 ab33 9aede3f301d2 jpg
we were at our table for over two hours chatting and laughing and it was really wonderful. 

moses continues to bring ian and i so. much. joy. he’s just the sweetest, sweetest boy and daily we say things like, “can you believe how adorable our kid is?!” to each other. little mo makes the cutest little grunt noise to say “yes,” has mastered smiling for pictures (but won’t always do it on call!), learns about one new word every day, gets so excited about brushing his teeth, is learning more and more about sharing (sometimes the hard way), and confidently answers “jesus, dada and mama” when asked who loves him. he is continually obsessed with toilets, and is getting more into the concept of a baby brother being in my belly. tonight at dinner he insisted on sharing some of his food with the baby! 

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it was so great to have ian’s mom and dad with us here in london for about a week before we all five went on our road trip up north. moses and i took grandma and grandpa to the royal courts of justice, the sky garden, and the v&a museum (where we found an awesome statue of moses’s namesake). they had some adventures around the city on their own and some good quality time with their son while i had a bunch of meetings for my church calling over the weekend. it’s so fun for me to spend time with my parents-in-law and make connections about ian’s genetics and upbringing. i’m so glad that little mo and baby brother have the blood of these wonderful, noble people flowing in their veins. 

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living in a country with stricter gun control laws than those in the usa informs my stance on this issue so profoundly. i am so disturbed that i wasn’t so disturbed by last week’s news about the school shooting in florida - that kind of news honestly just feels commonplace, and isn’t that just heartbreaking?? 

the strong nesting instinct that women commonly experience at the end of pregnancy is already hitting me quite hard! i calculated yesterday that when we get back from Morocco we will be less than six weeks away from having a baby. ahhhh, it has gone by sooo quickly this time around … and my brain is zipping thinking about getting the flat and our lives ready for a newborn! we still haven’t totally moved in to our new place and i just want everything to be perfectly set up and tidy and organized and perfect for when baby boy arrives (i guess especially because he is hopefully going to be born right here at home!). so as soon as we get back from our trip it’s game time

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i love my life. i’ve been pretty much showing my mother-in-law around my life the past few days, as she prepares to temporarily replace me as moses’s primary caretaker over the next week and a half. and I just keep thinking: i love my life. it’s simple in some ways, it’s challenging in some ways, it’s evolving in some ways …and i just sincerely love it. ian and i have decided that one of our main goals for our years on earth is feeling that we genuinely love our life as we progress through all the different chapters of mortality. 

happy wednesday! indeed, life is beautiful. 

england road trip with grandma and grandpa


ian’s parents came to town last week! it was so great to have them here in london with us for a few days, and this past weekend we took a lovely little road trip out into the english countryside together. moses adores both grandma and grandpa and has absolutely delighted in being with them - and ian and i have too, of course! grandpa had to go back to work in texas yesterday, and grandma is here for another couple of weeks because she is soooo kindly taking care of the little mo while ian and i go to morocco for ten days (we leave this upcoming friday!). i feel so blessed in the in-law department and it’s just always really good to be together. 

here’s some photos from our road trip, which included stops in cambridge, a couple villages that ian’s ancestors came from, lyme hall in the peak district, and oxford on the way back to london. we stayed two nights in a cozy little cottage on the edge of the peak district and all five loved seeing beautiful and historic bits of england. we spent a couple hours singing random songs together in the car (singing seems to be the only sure-fire way to help moses be happy after he’s been strapped into a car seat for several hours!), stayed up too late talking at the cottage, and caught some good weather and a stellar sunset. 

i love england so, so, so much. 

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we climbed to the top of a church tower in the center of cambridge and enjoyed the views. 
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i love strolling around the colleges at cambridge (and oxford!) and peeking in. everything is just so, so pretty - and so english.
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the chapel at king’s college in cambridge is among the very top most spectacular man-made structures i’ve ever seen. i've been inside now three times and each time i’ve walked in my jaw just drops! the fan ceiling and the stained glass is just mindbogglingly gorgeous. 
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^^ little mo among the snowdrop flowers in the churchyard of the village that his great great great grandparents lived in! ^^
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for some unknown reason, moses has definitivitely decided that he will pronounce both grandma and grandpa as “baka” - in a whisper. it’s pretty cute.
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^^ lyme hall - three points for you if you know which version of pride & prejudice this place appears in. ^^
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our quick stop through oxford reminded me again how much i love, love, love that town. 
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england: where i first truly connected with god as a child, where i lived for the first time on my own as a teenager, where i found myself in so many ways as a missionary, where i became a mother and really started creating a family. this green island is so significant and beautiful to me. it’s home. 

hooray for another weekend exploring this green and pleasant land. with grandma and grandpa!!