Wednesday, April 8

A Leap of Faith

Having two children is, without a doubt, a HUGE blessing from the Lord.  I absolutely adore Callie and Kellan and wouldn't trade being their mommy for the world.  There have been some set backs, however, since having them... My body just isn't what it used to be. 

 Now, I know that as you age your metabolism slows down and yada yada yada. But I don't want to let my body image get in the way of feeling confident and beautiful.  I've managed to lose the weight from my pregnancies with the help of nursing and working out every now and then, but my clothes still don't fit like they used to which means a lot of repeated outfits that are tired and worn out. 

Don't get me wrong, I love the way I look and my feelings of self worth don't come from a number on a scale or the fit of my pants, but lets face it, you feel a whole lot better when you don't have to go through 10 outfit changes every morning because things just aren't fitting right.  Any one else with me there? 

With my schedule as a full time first grade teacher, wife, mother, worship leader, daughter, sister, friend, crafter, etc... I find little to no time to hit the gym, and when I do get the time I simply don't have the energy.  This is where my new leap of faith comes into play. 

I recently joined It Works!  A health and wellness company loaded with all natural products geared to make you feel more fit, healthy, energized and beautiful.  I am THAT person who has always said, "I'll NEVER be THAT person...."  Ugh, a skeptic at heart, it's hard for me to take this leap of faith.  I'm not a fad dieter or a workout junkie.  I turn down offers for energy products and anything else that may wind up in my inbox all of the time.  But something about this company stood out to me. 

I've recently been praying for guidance.  I love my job, I love my family, I love my church home and friends, but something has been missing.  I just don't feel well.  Sluggish days are drowned in coffee breaks and the bags under my eyes are a testament to how drained I've become.  As a Christian I grew up hearing that my body is a temple.  And I get it.  But I've never really treated it as such.  Time, money, convenience... they all get in the way.   I think God has stepped in and given me that direction that I've been searching for. 

It Works is best known for the skinny wrap, (that crazy wrap thing that can tighten/tone/firm any part of your body in just 45 mintues).  Seen it?  Skeptical?  Me too... But after seeing these testimonies and before/after pictures from people I actually know (not photoshopped or exaggerated), it got me thinking.  If these products could help me to feel more energized and better about my appearance, why not try?  After looking into other products I was blown away at what It Works has to offer.  All natural supplements to assist in fruits/vegetable intake, energy, immune system support... Beauty products that tighten skin, heal eczema, reduce cellulite and varicose veins. This doesn't even begin to cover all of the wonderful products!  So I took a deep breath, and dove in head first.

This week I have 4 wraps heading my way.  If you're interested, skeptical, curious or just want to know more about the company, leave me a comment or send me a message!  I'd love to help you.  This is a journey for me, and it would be incredible to walk it with you beside me!  I also appreciate your prayers and encouragement as this isn't an easy thing for me to take on. But I have faith that God is up to something bigger than I could ever imagine... And I'm ready. 

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Monday, April 6

Matthew 21:22

When we first received Kellan's diagnosis my heart stopped.  After 3 failed hearing tests the audiologist sat me down and explained to me that he had substantial unilateral hearing loss; or hearing loss in only one ear.  My mind was on fast forward to potential learning delays, trouble in school, sports, life... Our little boy was going to have a rough road ahead of him and all I wanted to do was make it disappear. 

Josh and I sat, talked and decided, if our son was going to have a disability, this was the pick of the litter.  He still had perfect hearing on one side, he can see us, he can think, he can walk.... There were so many CAN's that this one can't suddenly didn't seem so big.  Immediately we began to pray for our sweet little boy.  We prayed for understanding, we prayed for knowledge and wisdom.  We prayed for his future and for our role as parents as he began this new journey.  We prayed for healing.  
The next step of our journey was to have an ABR test done.  We headed into Cook Children's for the test, prepared for whatever God had in store for us.  Or so we thought.  
After a very early start, we found ourselves waiting for the anesthesiologist in a holding room with a sleepy, hungry boy. "Alright Mom, it's time."  I had been coached on what to do next, but it didn't prepare my heart.  I placed Kellan on a large bed, surrounded by total strangers.  They had me wrap his blanket around his arms and body and "hug" him tightly.  A mask was placed on his face that dampened his cries to a hushed whisper.  It was eerie to see his face screaming/crying and scarcely be able to hear it.  After what seemed like an eternity (but surely was only mere seconds), his eyes went vacant and his body stilled.  The doctor instructed me to kiss his forehead and then leave... His body looked lifeless and I found myself breathless as I made my way into Josh's arms in the other room, tears streaming down my cheeks.  I knew he was asleep, safe, ok.  But the sight of him under shook me to my core.  

We decided to grab some breakfast and coffee while we waited... A trip to the cafeteria we know all too well from our days in the NICU with both kids.  There is a strange comfort we find there.

After a rushed meal we found ourselves back in the waiting room.  I pulled out my Bible and as I began to read, the audiologist walked out.  "Mr. and Mrs. Morgan?"  - That's us... Breathe, Nicki.  

She began to go over the test results by asking us why it is we were there.  I explained that he had been diagnosed with substantial unilateral hearing loss and we were there to explore how great the loss was to decide what path we needed to take next.  She then showed us his charts and said, "That's what I thought.... Well, I knew he had been diagnosed, but his hearing in both ears is perfect."  My eyes flooded with tears and again, I found myself unable to breathe.

Confused, we asked her to elaborate.  She continued to explain that she knew the audiologist that had diagnosed Kellan and she's very respected in their field.  She referred to his sudden, unexplained "perfect" hearing as an "anomaly."  Though a choked voice I managed to whisper, "No, it's a miracle."  
In Matthew 21:22 it says, "And whatever you ask in prayer, you will receive, if you have faith.” 

Friends and family, I am so unsure of why God chose our family to bless with this miracle.  But I do not question Him.  We feel so undeserving and humbled.  He knew exactly what He was doing all along.  Kellan doesn't know how special he is, how blessed and loved.  We are incredibly thankful for all of the prayers that have been said lifting our son up.  The God that healed the blind and lame, and raised the dead to life, is STILL performing miracles today!  We give ALL the glory, ALL the honor and ALL of our praise to Him and Him alone. 

I would encourage you today with this final thought;  There are times in our lives when we are fearful to pray for miracles because we are unsure that they will be heard or answered.  I am guilty of asking God to answer prayers that I ask Him in a timid, questioning voice.  Asking with FAITH means praying with the peace that no matter the outcome, God will be beside you, holding you, guiding you.  Regardless of the results of Kellan's hearing test, we were prepared to walk together in faith.  I am ecstatic that the path we get to walk is one of gratefulness and humility.   Please join with us in praising God for this answered prayer....

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Saturday, April 4

Kellan Joshua - 1 YEAR!

Writing that heading was a lot harder than I had anticipated.  One year.  Why, oh why must time move so quickly?  It becomes a little overwhelming when TimeHop shoves it in my face everyday.  Hey, look at this!  One year ago today your little boy was a teeny tiny baby all snuggled up in your chest snoozing soundly.  Ugh, instead of calling it TimeHeop they should call it Instant Baby Fever Hop.  

Don't worry.  I'm not pregnant.  

Back to the topic at hand.  Our sweet, handsome boy just turned one and I'm all nostalgic and sappy right now.  Sorry, I'm not sorry.  

For his birthday bash we decided to stick with a woodland theme.  This way any decoration I made we could somehow incorporate into his room without wasting TOO much money on things that would just take up more space in our less than stellar attic storage.

Of course, I had to stick with tradition and make him a chalkboard.  You can read more about how to create your own DIY chalkboard by checking out this post.  


I knew that he was in desperate need of a stuffed fox but didn't really feel like laying down the dough to buy one for him.  So, keeping with my DIY mentality I decided to create my own crochet pattern and make him one myself!  It took a few nights to put together, but I love the way he turned out.  Kellan will crawl up and clobber it with hugs and snuggles.  It's simply adorable.  

In addition to his birthday chalkboard and other decorations, I also made him a wooden sign with his name hand painted on it and the birthday banner on his high chair.  For pictures I decided to recreate a Pinterest find and use a year of Instagram pictures to create a large 1 on the wall.  It was a lot of fun spending time on these little projects for him.  

We invited family and friends with littles to the party to celebrate, but kept it more low key than with Callie's first birthday.  The weather ended up being GORGEOUS and we moved a lot of the kids out to the backyard to play to open up space in our too tiny house.  

Kellan was in awe of all of the activities and crashed hard once all of his guests left.  We had a great time getting to catch up with friends and family and were so appreciative of all that were able to make it out to show their love to our little guy.  

Here are some pictures from his big day!


And of course, I had to finish up his monthly photoshoots with 12 month pictures...  

Kellan Joshua,

In this past year you have transformed our family in the absolute most perfect way.  We prayed for you before God even began to knit you in my womb.  We have watched you from your very first days, fighting for your life in the NICU, amazing doctors with your strength. And as you've grown into a little boy with a laid back grin and a not so quiet determination.  You are head strong, know what you want and will go to any length to make sure you get it.  Not only is Mommy your number one fan, you are hers as well.  You've taught me how to have faith.  When we found out about your hearing loss we prayed for your healing (more about that in another post), and knew that with faith, we could handle anything that came our way.  You adore your big sister and to this day, she is the only one who can make you flat out belly laugh for no apparent reason.  She loves you more than she lets on, by the way.  We will continue to thank God for blessing us with your life for all of our days.  Thank you for giving us the pleasure of being your parents.  We love you deeply, with all that we have!

Always and forever,
Mommy and Daddy
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