Saturday, December 31, 2011

What a difference a year can make!!

I can remember bringing in the New Year 2011 with Brandon at the Bi-Lo Center celebrating with our church Redemption and just thinking about all the year had to hold.  Birthdays, Anniversaries, the normal stuff and then many many first!  Birth of our First son, First Mother's Day, First Father's Day, First holidays with a new family member, and oh just how exciting it all sounded on that night.  We had so much to look forward to!  But no thought that night could have ever prepared me for those moments that I got to experience!

The day Karson was born what a memory!!  What an awesome experience to have with Brandon and to go through together.  But the memories from that day are overwhelming.  That first cry, first time you hold him in your arms, first prayer as a family, first time talking to Karson, first family picture (yeah I'm big on pictures!) first bath, first night together.  Truly just an experience that you can't even explain or put into words!  (And they automatically prepare you to be a close family because they give you this really small room to stay in while at the hospital so you get pretty tight! :)

And then to celebrate your first mothers day and first fathers day.  Things that you have celebrated with your parents for years and now its your turn.  But I can also remember sitting back and this really happening?  Oh how I long to be the best mom to my precious child! And can it be that Mother's Day is one of my favorite times now....yeah I think so! Not a day to pamper mommy....but for me it was a reminder as to why I do all I do.  It helped me to realize I take care of my husband and my sweet baby because I LOVE to.  It's what I was born to do (if you ask me!) And although it takes quite the energy out of me to do all that I want to for them it's also the gift God has given me.  And may I never take a day for granted that I take care of them because it's my calling!! And to see my family honor me was just a small reminder to me that everything I do whether seen or done behind closed doors for them is all absolutely worth it!!  Becoming a mom has showed me more of my worth and why I am here and I am so honored to have this as a new roll!  

And then to honor Brandon on Father's Day!  I know for a fact Karson will grow up wanting to be just like his daddy!  A warrior, a leader, someone our family can count on, disciplined, determined, dedicated!  He's the whole package....what an awesome example Karson has to follow and look up to!

Our first summer together going to the beach spending time with family and friends.  New family traditions. His first time out to the dove field, his first thanksgiving, first time out to the land, his first christmas! 

 So many memories from this year that I will forever cherish.  And pictures are a great reminder that we will all look back on someday, but the memories I have stored up I will always remember!  This year was AMAZING!  Just a true blessing that I am so thankful for!  

But I know I can close and still say....THE BEST IS YET TO COME!!!!  So we welcome in 2012 with open arms, open heart, and open direction to what God has in store for us! 

"Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen."
 Ephesians 3:20-21

Friday, December 30, 2011

Karson's First Christmas

Another first in our life with Karson!  Enjoying the christmas holiday.  Getting older anyone could probably agree it just becomes another holiday, with the same traditions, and almost like making sure we do everything we have always done every year!  But this year brought some new enjoyment and excitement with Karson.

I put up our christmas tree right before Thanksgiving because I knew we would be traveling and I wanted to enjoy it when we got back from Sumter.  I loved it this year as I decorated it a little more off the fact that we have a little one in the family.  Then Karson and I made his first christmas ornament to go on the tree.  He was not so excited about me painting his hand and foot to put on the ornament but you gotta do what you gotta do right :)

We decided to take him to Riverbank Zoo to look at all the lights.  We left one day after Brandon got off work and went to get supper and then headed to the zoo.  Of course he is not at the age to really appreciate it and talk back to us but he loves staring at lights so we figured it would be something we could all enjoy together.  And I am sure now we will go back next year and he will be saying "lights, lights, lights!"

He got his first pair of Christmas pajamas to wear christmas night (which I must say were adorable!) and although he didn't realize what was going on Christmas morning we were filled with joy having him with us! We started our morning just like we do every morning playing in the bed and laughing with one another.  

He of course loved playing with the wrapping paper, boxes, and anything unusual for children to play with!  

But that didn't stop him from being spoiled rotten by all of his grandparents, aunts, and uncles!  He got quite the mix of toys to bring back home with us. We started at my parents house that morning and then made our way to Brandon's parents house.  Where Karson was finally getting the hang of this?!?....Oh no not so much...still just enjoying the paper!

Yep...I think I'll eat this!

The last gift Karson opened was a lifetime hunting and fishing license from his Grandpa and a wooden gun that his grandpa had carved and painted himself.  Needless to say, Karson's Daddy was pretty excited about this (and one day Karson will be to!)

Oh yeah and Uncle Michael got a gun from Aunt JoJo....these boys had a good christmas!

Another wonderful holiday making lasting memories with my precious family!!!  What a year 2011 has been and what a blessing God has given us in our son Karson Clay Kinder! 

"Now to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, to God who alone is wise, be honor and glory forever and ever. Amen." 1 Timothy 1:17

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Only few know the price!!

Oh the holidays!!  We rush around trying to buy presents, going to parties, decorating.....posting status updates all about Christmas.  Voicing our opinions on Santa or no Santa...or how crazy it is spending so much money during this time of year....BUT if we stop and think about it what are we all hoping for this time of year....Time Around FAMILY!  It's always a time where we are creating family traditions some new, some old, and everything in between.  What most all of us want at this time of year is family.

So lately my mind has been heavy with all the military people I know.  You see the bottom line is a lot of them will celebrate Christmas away from their family, away from their wife/husband, and children.  And to think probably their only christmas wish would be to spend time with their family.  Just to be home!!  What a great price they pay for our freedom....for us to be sitting around with our family this holiday season....for us to live in a free world.  And honestly that appreciation goes further because even if they aren't serving our country overseas many of them are miles away from their family on different military bases having to celebrate all the holidays on base! They truly pay a price that only few could ever understand or comprehend.  One that I will never be able to comprehend.  And yet it goes even further than that....because behind every great man or woman serving our country they have their family here at home who is "serving" our country as well.  By sacrificing time spent without their mom or dad, or time away from their husband or wife!  I have to say I admire military wives more than you could imagine.  Brandon leaves me for a week and I think I am not gonna make it.  I cannot imagine being away and having the courage and stability all these wives have.  You see we have a lot to sit around with our family and be grateful for this season.  Let's not take this time for granted!!!

And honestly, its not just this time of year its ALL year long.  People spend time away from their family...wives raise their children without daddy being home, no break, no one to wrap their arms around them each night.  Daddy's who miss the birth of a child because they are overseas serving our country...miss the first words, the first smile...whatever it may be!  And I know they don't want our pity by no means...BUT they do deserve our appreciation!  Its because of them we live in the land of the free and the home of the brave.  Don't let a military person go by you without telling them you appreciate them this holiday season!  We truly do not know the price!!!

The video below is a deployment done just a few short months ago.  Family who will be away from one another this holiday season!!  All the photos were done by LizOdom Photography! Her husband also deployed this same time.  What a video of emotion and pictures showing how passionate all these people are!

Karson's First Thanksgiving

Karson is so full of life right now!  He is sitting up, playing with his toys, and always wanting someone to play with him.  So we always go to Sumter for the holidays and this was Karson's first time celebrating Thanksgiving.  Brandon always goes out to the land over thanksgiving and usually most days we are home he hunts.  Well really no usually to it, he hunts!! But we knew we wanted to take Karson to the land for the first time to and he loved it.  He has always loved being outside which makes me happy because I hope the older he gets the more he will want to run and play and use all his energy up outside!  He loved the land...he was mesmerized by the fire...and was such a good boy.

Seriously amazing blue eyes!

Then we celebrated Thanksgiving this year at Brandon's parents house with lots and lots of food!  And of course Karson had to come dressed for the occasion with his tie shirt.  After lunch he played outside with his cousins and oh how I wish I could see inside to all of their minds and just know what they were thinking sometimes!

We really have SO much to be thankful for this season and I am just in awe of all God has blessed us with.  

"Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen." Ephesians 3:20-21