Eva is One

On December 18th, our little lagniappe baby turned one.  I can hardly believe it!  The past year had been a blur of diapers and boxes and gps directions, but I wouldn’t change a single second of it.  (Even if Eva’s dear little self STILL doesn’t sleep through the night.) At this point in the year, I keep thinking, “Two years ago I had no clue that Eva would be.” Now, as cliche as it sounds, I could not imagine my life without her.  It’s true that your heart grows for each child, and I would venture to say that it grows more for the very unexpected ones.  Eva is a peanut (still in 6-9 month clothes), but doesn’t let that hold her back from trying to keep up with her sister and brother in activity and far surpassing them in noise.  We had a good time celebrating with cupcakes on her actual birthday and with a big cake surrounded by family the next weekend.  Eva wasn’t sure what to make of all the attention and she cried when we sang to her, but caught on to the jig quickly as soon as frosting passed her lips.  

I am overwhelmingly grateful for the “grace upon grace” that is my Eva Louise.  

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Fidelis

I alluded to the fact that we are birthing things of a new sort here at the Magee household. Fidelis Beer Company has been a long-time dream of ours. It’s about to be reality! Check it out!

Emmanuel

“Our Life himself came down into this world and took away our death.  He slew it with his own abounding life, and with thunder in his voice he called us from this world to return to him in heaven.  From heaven he came down to us, entering first the Virgin’s womb, where humanity, our mortal flesh, was wedded to him so that it might not be forever mortal.” -St. Augustine, Confessions

I was going to write something tonight, but upon reading this, I realized I absolutely have nothing better to say.  

Hallelujah.  God is with us.

Cyber Monday/ Giving Tuesday

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It’s that time again.  Christmas time.  Shopping time.  It’s inevitable, but what if you could make a difference with your Holiday shopping this year?  Well, you can.  This week, you can help bring an orphan home to his forever family with your purchases through Noonday Collection.  It’s as easy as:

1-Shop at http://www.kellimagee.noondaycollection.com

2-Choose KELLI MAGEE from the Ambassador name drop down boxx

3-Type SHELLEY TANNER in the “Trunk Show” box

Ten percent of every purchase you make will go to help bring Titus home to his forever family.  So, not only do you get beautiful, handmade gifts, you help provide pathways out of poverty for  the artisans who make these wonderful gifts, AND you help bring a family together.  Everybody wins!!!!

 

The Black Hole

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On my old blog, I once shared about the black hole of post-partum depression I found myself in nearly three years ago.  I don’t want to re-hash everything about my experience today, I just wanted to acknowledge once again that it’s real and real people suffer from it.  It comes out of the blue and even if you love your new baby with all your heart and even if he happens to be the cutest little boy to ever grace the planet, you may end up in the black hole.  I did.  

What I really wanted to share today is how I got out.  The broad stroke of it is that God reached down and pulled me out EVEN THOUGH I DIDN’T WANT TO COME OUT.  The fine print goes a little something like this.  Miller hated nursing and this broke my heart.  Even though he was my second and I was supposed to know what to do this time, I can remember struggling even in the hospital to keep him from screaming every time he ate.  It was demoralizing.  Those early days and weeks are a blur of increasing darkness.  One day, when I was at my lowest, a good friend told me to just bring Els over to play with her girls.  It had been an awful morning, so I gladly complied.  When I got to her house, she met me at the door with a hug and cried along with me.  She didn’t try to cheer me up or pull me out just then.  She just climbed down the ladder and pulled up the chair beside me and cried with me.  I’d love to say that everything was better after this day, but it took a long, long time.  I did know from that day forward that I wasn’t alone.  That I wasn’t the only person to have ever been in that hole.   In slow, careful steps, she began to show me the way out.  

This all came to mind as I talked with some ladies this morning about how we need each other.  As women, as mothers, as Christians.  We Americans want to be so independent and do it ourselves and never let them see us sweat, but it’s just not true.  I’m not sure what would have happened to me if not for my friend in Beaufort.  I’m glad I don’t have to know.  

The heartbreaking reality is that three years later, I remember very little about Miller’s babyhood.  He was (and still is) devilishly cute and extremely loving.  I would never wish post-partum depression on anyone and I don’t want to go back, but God used the experience to mercifully draw me closer to Himself and give me life-long precious friends.  For that, I am forever grateful.  

“Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me.” -Psalm 23:4

Exciting News

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Pretty much every time I have shared “exciting news” on my blog in the past it’s been to share that we are adding another member to our family.  While this is not the case now, we Magees are certainly birthing things of another sort these days.  Brian has plans in the works that we’re not quite ready to share, but soon, soon my dear readers, we will be shouting it from the rooftops.

In the meantime, I am thrilled to announce my partnership with Noonday Collectionpurchasing with a purpose as an Ambassador.  Noonday is an amazing company that creates sustainable wage jobs for artisans in developing countries such as Uganda, India, and Guatemala by marketing the beautiful, handcrafted jewelry and accessories that they make.  We are also advocates for orphans globally and Noonday trunkshows can be held as adoption fundraisers.  I want to write a whole lot more about this (I could talk for days), but I just wanted to introduce you to the company.  Whether you’re like me and just starting to shop for the holidays or you’re almost done, think about this holiday season.  Please let me know if you would like more information or have any questions.  

On Autumn

We hail from the south.  Not just south of the Mason-Dixon, the REAL south, the deep south.  So, while we spent our lives trick-or-treating and celebrating Thanksgiving, the two holidays did not historically require long sleeves, or even jackets.  Growing up, my family would drive to the mountains of North Carolina to see the “fall colors” because most of the time trees were still green late into October at home.  

For these reasons, I have decided that Autumn, or fall, or these months (yes, months!) between August and Advent are my favorite thing about Northern Virginia.  While fighting traffic on my way pretty much everywhere lately I’ve wanted to get out of the car and dance and sing for joy because of the beauty of each and every leaf on each and every tree everywhere here.  Last weekend we took a little family trip to a homebrew store in a neighboring town via a Virginia Byway and I felt with every turn we had entered into a true wonderland.  This weekend, we visited Arlington National Cemetery and the combination of fire-hued trees and cool temperature served to heighten the solemnity and magnitude of the place.  

We celebrated the 238th birthday of the Marine Corps and veterans of all the military services over the past several days and I am immensely grateful for those who have gone before us, fought the good fight, and paved the way for the freedoms I so often take for granted.  ImageImageImage 

*Note: We also visited the Manassas Battlefield, where the Civil War began in earnest.  And, like Brad Pitt in Ocean’s 11, we take snacks everywhere.