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December 27, 2011

Baby Blessings; our nest has been blessed.

Baby Blessings...

Of all God's blessings big and small
a Baby is the best of all:
A precious soul to love and raise,
to guide and nurture in God's ways.
A precious life to shape and mold
whose tiny hands are yours to hold;
a life entrusted in your care
to bathe in love and wrap in prayer.
Your life will be so richly blessed
with lots of joy and happiness,
you'll wipe away the baby tears,
enjoying him for many years.
The fresh clean scent of baby soap,
the innocence so full of HOPE, =)
your life will never be the same;
so welcome him in Jesus' name.

I love this sweet poem that was given to me on a bookmark with a sweet pin of "baby shoes." It couldn't be more perfect and I love that it said "so full of hope." What a blessing. Finally, I'm doing all of those things. Wiping baby tears. Giving baths. Holding tiny hands. And just completely enjoying my baby. Every moment I spend with him, each new day is a blessing. I'm not taking anything for granted. Nothing. I'm cherishing every second.

They sent me home from the hospital with that "little pink bottle of shampoo" I've talked about before in my post "The Snowglobe"... You can find it here...

 It is the smell that I remember of my sweet Maddie. I'll never forget holding Jonah and smelling that sweet smell. It almost took my breath away it was so wonderful. I felt like I was holding her as I held him. It was so so sweet. I kept the bottle and I smell it often. Oh the sweet little reminders.

Oh Lord will you help me to shape and mold this sweet little one into the person You want him to be. For we know he is so special and You have great plans for him. He is such a blessing through the midst of a storm. He is truly a rainbow baby and we are so grateful for him.

I have SO much to share still, pictures, stories of our first Christmas and some heartache over missing Maddie, but today, I just want to hold my baby and be grateful that he is here. So for now, here are some of our professional pictures. The first set is from the hospital at one day old. The second set was taken by my friend Lois of Sunshine Portrait Studio at 4 days old, or should I say new. =) Oh how I love this baby boy!

In the Hospital at one day new. =)

Four days new... so much love behind these photos...
My sweet friend Lois wanted to take pictures of Jonah in a nest. These pictures couldn't be more perfect, I just LOVE how they turned out! Enjoy =)

This picture speaks volumes to me... Jonah and Maddie Birdie. <3

Our nest truly has been blessed... Thank you Lord for our Little Dove, Jonah...<3

December 20, 2011

Having Hope this Christmas...

It has been a wonderful week of kissing, hugging, snuggling, feeding and loving on my precious new little boy. I wish I could put into words just how much he is helping my heart to heal. He has given me so much happiness again in a time when finding happiness seemed impossible. I just know that the Lord knew I needed him for Christmas.

He is such a wonderful gift.

A gift of love and hope.

After the year we've had, going into this Christmas season, our family has such a different spirit. The things that used to matter. Don't.

All that matters is the happiness and health of our loved ones and our sweet babies.

Thinking back to just one short year ago, as I was in labor with Maddie Grace and my life was about to change as I became the mother of a little girl, I had no idea what was ahead of me. All I knew was this precious gift of a little girl was born. She was in my arms. She was there. The happiness I felt that day will carry me the rest of my life. Her presence and grace in the moment of her birth overwhelmed me.

She truly was God's gift of "Grace" to me. She still is.

Fast forward to 11 short months later through many many tears and heartache. God gave me another gift.

A gift of "Hope."

The moment Jonah came into the world, hope was born into my life again.

Through much prayer and faith and trust. Hope came to flesh. My hope. My Jonah.

As you could see in my previous post, the moment he was placed in my arms was an emotional one.
Probably the most emotional, raw moment I've ever experienced in my life. I waited so long. So very long to feel the warmth and breath of him on my skin. I waited so long to take in all of his wonderful newborn newness. I ached and missed all of these things with my sweet Madeline after she was gone from my arms. He filled them again. It is still so surreal to me. I will never forget this moment!

I thought the words of my sister in law, Annette summed it up perfectly. She posted these words under this picture she took of me holding Jonah for the first time...

"Many things may try to take our Joy... This year we have loved and lost so much... This moment will forever be a part of me, it was the purest form of love and raw emotion... Absolute beauty!!! She learned to let go of what she thought the future would bring and accepted what God truly had in-store for her... Jonah Asher Ross"

Jonah was what God had in store for me all along... He was sent to restore my hope, and he did.

It's bittersweet.

I miss Maddie more that words can express, but I can't even imagine my life now without sweet Jonah. He was sent to me when my heart was broken. He has renewed my strength and given me faith and joy that not many people experience. He is perfect and amazing in every way.

He doesn't even know how special he is... I wonder if he will one day?

As Christmas approaches and I am in love with this season and my new bundle of a baby boy, I can't help but think about another precious baby boy. The One who this season is truly about; the Lord Jesus Christ.

I wonder how Mary must have felt as she approached her delivery? I'm sure she had fear and questions. I'm sure she would have loved to asked God why He chose her? Yet He did, fully knowing the outcome at hand, that she would birth the Saviour of our World. That He would grow up with one purpose at hand, to die on the cross and save this lost and dying world. And that He did.

God gave so much, for you and for me.

He gave us His Son.

What a gift. For there is no greater gift.

As I hold my sweet boy today and think of the sacrifice of giving a child, I can hardly imagine. For I didn't chose to give my sweet girl, I don't think I could have. I know the pain that comes with her being gone. I know how much I ache day in and day out for her, even still this day.

Yet God still gave...

Why? Why did He give?

So you and I can be saved. So our sins can be forgiven and so we can have a home in Heaven with Him for eternity.

John 3:16
For God so loved the world, that he gave his ONLY begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

Have you considered how much God loves you in spite of your sin?

Do you realize that your sin had to be paid for?

The good news is, Jesus already paid for that sin when He died on the cross and displayed Calvary's love.

The greatest love that has ever been given. The greatest gift that we can receive.

You too can have "Hope" this Christmas. The hope of Heaven and eternal life.

Through this blog I've shared our story about our gift of a daughter. And now, a new chapter has begun as we have our  gift of a son. Grace and hope are a huge part of my life because of them and I will continue to write of them the rest of my days.

God has given me so much love and grace and hope.

This is a free gift for you and for me, that is freely given to all. The free gift of eternal life.

But do you know Him? Do you know His Son? Accept Him today, don't wait.

If anyone has shown me how short life can be, it's Maddie.

We just don't know if we have tomorrow. 2 days wasn't very long but it was all she had. Yet I can go on fully knowing I will be reunited with her in Heaven. I KNOW I will be there because of the gift I accepted 13 years ago, when I bowed my head in faith and asked Jesus Christ into my heart. Since that day I have tried my best to live for the Lord. Although I have failed Him many times, He has never failed me. His Word tells me us that He will never leave us or forsake us and I know that He has kept that promise.

As we celebrate Christmas, I am so thankful for the hope and gift of Heaven.

And I am thankful for my new gift of hope here on earth.

God is so good to me. He has given me much more than I could ask or ever deserve and I am so thankful for that.

As this year comes to a close and I know the hardships and heartaches I've endured, I know one thing is for sure. God led me through it all. Day in and day out, He was there.

He carried me through what most call the "worst thing you can go through... the loss of a child."

But through it all I kept my faith and HE restored my hope.

Through prayer, through His Word. Through Jonah.

I have so much hope this Christmas. Even as I approach the one year birthday and death of my daughter, I still have hope. A renewed hope.

Hope in Heaven.

Hope on Earth.

God has given me this and for that I am grateful.

I now spend my days doing what I planned to do a year ago. Jonah is filling my arms and healing my heart. He is God's will for my life.  I had to wait a little while, but God kept His promise to me and blessed me again and this time he has given me hope along with grace.

 Do you have hope in Him this Christmas? He will keep His promise to you too.

Titus 1:2 In hope of eternal life, which God, that cannot lie, promised before the world began.

Job 11:18a  And thou shalt be secure, because there is hope...
Much Love,
Natalie Ross

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And now... lots more pictures of my sweet little bundle of hope!

So completely in love with this little boy... <3

Jonah looking so much like Maddie Grace

Our family...

Our AMAZING doctor. He's been through so much with us. We love him!

Completely smitten

First Bath

So in love with Jonah Asher...

Brothers <3

Our early Christmas present

Daddy getting Jonah dressed to go home. =)

Going Home outfit...

Getting his chains cut off. =) I'm free!

Leaving the hospital

Bringing Home Baby... First car ride!

Bringing Home Jonah

Welcome Home Jonah Bear!

Rick introducing Jonah to his room. =)

Home at last... and we are praying for many precious memories here together. =)