the morning started out like any other. the kids and i popped downstairs to josh's office to tell him good morning, i got breakfast going and then caught up on a little housework before we were leaving that afternoon.
but then the phone rang. judah was gone.
josh and i sank to depths we had never known before. everything around us kind of disappeared, and we spent the rest of the morning crying, talking, and praying together as a family. but the trip!! we knew there was no way we could miss out on the celebrations, but the idea of laughing and eating massive amounts of cake in a house with twenty other people felt like an impossible, and almost painful, goal.
josh talked with his mom back and forth throughout the day, and she shared with him that they had decided if we could still come, they would like to keep the kids and send us to a hotel for the weekend to give us some much needed time to rest and mourn. josh asked me about it, and i told him from behind bloodshot, swollen, marshmallowish puffy eyes that i didn't think i could make even the simplest of decisions that day, that i would do whatever he said to do.
a few hours later, we were in the car on our way to georgia.
we're so thankful for the gift pam and jim gave us in time away. our little ones were sad about judah, but it was preschooler sad. like can't-find-a-favorite-toy-sad. it was so good for them to have around-the-clock playmates while we could pop in and out as our emotions needed. like i told pam and jim, we had no idea what we needed, but they nailed it for us!
while we certainly had some sad time (like when i buried my head in our waitresses' chest that night and cried about our baby dying -- no, i didn't know her in the least), but we also had some precious time with family.
one of the highlights of the weekend was the trip to the park to get photos with the little cousins. grandma lewis had bought them converse sneakers just for the pictures...
not only did izzy fly off the merry-go-round, but she flew into the mud puddle beside the merry-go-round. thanks to rebekah for these next shots (oh, and please note the discovery we made on izzy's belly when i took off her soaking wet shirt)...
little did we know that the artiste had turned the markers on herself when she was done with her nursery creation that afternoon during naptime. thankfully, her grand-mére(*) thought it was a riot, and she reminded us not to sweat the small stuff.
got it. although i don't know that i would consider this "small stuff". ;-)
* grand-mére is french for "grandmother". yeah, i'm cultured like that.