Saturday, April 21

twenty six

today i turn twenty six.

birthdays are always a time of reflection for me. i can't help but ponder on this last year, and even more, my entire past that has brought me to where i am right this very moment.

my youth pastor came to preach at our church this past week. his voice alone makes me tear up; a man that i truly love and admire. in his voice i hear laughter and long nights, many mistakes, bus trips, worship, becoming, the times and places that shaped me to be the woman i am today. i hear my friends who became my family, the chunk of years that were some of the best years of my life. i hear his voice on my wedding day when he commanded me to love my husband, and even more than that, to love my God. most of all i hear the time when i truly came to understand the gospel and grace.

i saw an old friend the other day. just by looking into her hazel eyes, and without saying a word, i felt it all. i felt all of our memories come flooding back and i knew she felt it, too. neither of us had to say a word but as i stood there holding story, and she stood there, story holding onto her finger, we said it all. how did we go from that to this? and, how, just how did we get here?


i don't know what i would have thought if you told me when i was 15 or 16 years old that i would be married, and staying home raising my three kids, all born before my 26th birthday. given my mood-swiningin', slightly sarcastic, miss independent self, i could have been thrilled about this one day and would have never believed it the next. 

it would be safe to say that many of my friends thought i was crazy when i got in engaged right after i turned 19 and married right after i turned 20. and then even crazier when i started popping out babies left and right. but when i look back on the years that lead me to place that i am today i see the Lord's hand continually guiding and directing me. my heart bursts with gratefulness for Him fulfilling my deepest desires to marry a man who loves and serves Him, for the abundance of blessings He has given me in each of my children, and for trusting me to raise these three little lives. 

and, truth be told, sometimes being a mom makes me want to rip my hair out. and run. far, far away.

but, you know what? i wouldn't have it any other way.

to many the road that i am on as a wife and mother isn't the most adventurous. it isn't the most daring and exciting. and it isn't what a lot of 26 year old women would want for themselves. some might think less of where i am at and what i am doing day in and day out. dishes, dirty diapers, and a three hour nursing schedules aren't really that fabulous.

but, wait.

this is my great adventure.

...and He's not done with me yet. i am ready for how the Lord will use me in my 26th year, ready to show others His love and His grace. i am ready to continue falling more in love in my maker.

i am so blessed to claim these twenty six years as my own.

now, if you'll excuse me. two little boys just collided and a certain baby girl is a-hollerin'.
… it's back to the glamorous life.

83 comments:

  1. Happy Birthday! You are so sweet! Have a wonderful day!

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    1. thank you, elise! i hope you are enjoying your new design!! xoxo

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  2. Happy Birthday! That was a great post and you have a wonderful perspective on your life! I'm turning 30 this year and am taking some time to reflect on where I am in life... I must say I'm pretty happy with things! Sometimes it's nice to take a moment and cherish everything around you. Have a great day,

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    1. thank you so much, erika! i agree... so important to look around and give thanks for it all. i don't do it often enough.

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  3. Beautiful. I admire this wise, but still entertaining post. :)

    -Lindsey
    Et tu, tutu?

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  4. oh the happiest of birthdays to yo my beautiful friend! Seriously go have a fab day!

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    1. thank you! fab. day so far :) love you girl!

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  5. You pop out babies like a mormon ;) haha ....i hope your birthday is amazing, you are wonderful &i luv you!

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    1. haha i will claim that ;) love you friend!!

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  6. too funny....my first thought was, man, i wish i would have had three kids before i turn 26 (next month). Lol. Such is the way of life :)
    Happy, happy birthday!!!

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    1. thank you!! xoxo and happy birthday to you next month :)

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  7. Happy birthday! I'll be 26 in August and I dread it! Haha! I don't want to be old.....I got married at 18, right before my 19th birthday. I can't believe this August I'll have been married for 7 years. Marriage was always something I wanted, kids not so much but I'm glad to say I've experienced motherhood but having three by now?! Lol! You are super woman.

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    1. thank you friend :) you crack me up. super woman i am not... crazy woman i am.

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  8. happy birthday!! this is such a great post. just when i saw the title i thought, i hope i have a husband a kids by the time i'm twenty six haha :]

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  9. Happy Birthday! Your life parallels mine....and after all these years I have no regrets. Bring on the glamorous life!!! :)

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  10. Happy Birthday! I connected so much with this post, and relate to it a lot. Thank you for sharing. God is so sweet!

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  11. Happy birthday, Danielle! I love the way you put it here - this is your adventure! Other's may not understand it - but they don't have to! I admire you very much :)

    xo

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    1. bre, you are so sweet. thank you for your always encouraging, always kind words.

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  12. and don't ya just love the glamorous life ;)
    at 26, i didn't want to have children...it wasn't until i turned 27 that i got the "urge."
    and it wasn't until almost 10yrs later that the Lord blessed me with my Nicholas.
    God's timing is not our own, but it is perfect.
    you have a perfect little family Danielle! be blessed!

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    1. thank you so much maryanne! grateful for you and your friendship. "God's timing is not our own but it is perfect." So true.

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  13. Happy Birthday, friend!!! I hope you have a very blessed 26th year!!! xoxo

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  14. a big happy birthday to you! enjoy the glam that is mommyhood, nothing better!
    <3

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  15. :) You're awesome :)
    Happy happy birthday sweet friend!!!!!!!!

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  16. happy birthday to you! what a good reminder that raising our children & loving our husbands is our very own adventure. praying this 26th year you will be blessed! ♥

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  17. Happy Birthday Dannie girl! You are a beautiful woman, & I'm so thankful for your 26 years!

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    1. you make me smile, kirra sue. ps: i have been stalking your life looking for your blog and upates on you and your little sweet babe. we need to email. STAT. or maybe VIDEO CHAT. please?!?!

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  18. Happy Birthday! What a sweet, reflective birthday post!

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  19. Replies
    1. i love you! i rocked my new red sunglasses this morning. and also... how did you know i needed a wallet? xxoxo

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  20. happy birthday, sweet mama!
    so grateful for you, and the light you shine.
    friends that push me closer to the king are a treasure.
    YOU are such a friend!

    love you, party hard, girl :)

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    1. so agreed. and you do that for me all.the.time. thankful for your heart for HIM. love you friend!

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  21. so beautifully presented. i get it. i understand it. love this post. and happy birthday to one inspiring, beautiful mama. hope your day is great and you get spoiled a bit.
    love you tons.

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    1. i love you friend! when is our skype date?!?! i need it!

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  22. Happy birthday sweet friend! I love reflecting back & seeing things happen that could only be because of the Lord. His hand is in every detail. Thankful for who He has formed you & your beautiful words. Enjoy today.

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    1. thank you for your sweet words, cory! you are precious.

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  23. Happy Birthday!!! It's crazy how quick the time passes! I feel like I was 26 just yesterday and now I'm 31! The best thing is that because you got married young & had children young, you'll be able to really go out and enjoy life when they are grown! That's something we sometimes forget to do in our teen's & twenties, so you'll really be able to soak it all in. Hope you have a very special day =)

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  24. I cannot tell you how encouraging this post is for me. So many times I hear negativity about being young and being a wife and momma. I am 23 and have a 6 month old and I agree with every work you wrote. its so refreshing not to hear "there goes this or there goes that" in reference to sweet and innocent babies. yes its hard but so worth it. thanks for the words of positivity.

    happy birthday! to many more!

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    1. there are so many wonderful things about being a young wife and mama, it's easy to forget them sometimes but lately i can't help but feel overjoyed for the blessings!! thank you!!

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  25. happy birthday!!! arne't birthdays the best. it's so crazy to reflect on the past year and see the journey that God has brought you on...and to remember that he's not even done yet! blessings on your day and year. :)

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  26. Happiest of birthdays sweet friend (cannot believe you didn't tell me!) and I hope you get all the love you deserve.

    ::me now wrapping my arms tight around you and giving you the biggest squeeze::

    Love you and welcome to the 26 club! Xo.

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  27. Happy birthday sweet lady. Tomorrow is my day(32)...my how the years fly, dont they?

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  28. Happy birthday to you, beautiful girl!

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  29. Happy Birthday! What a beautiful post! Thank you for being such a wonderful witness!

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  30. aww happy happy birthday! You are such a good example to us all

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  31. Happy Birthday girl! My husband and I got married both at 19 and it was the best decision we've ever made. Not like marriage is perfect, but when God brings two people together and you are best friends, you just know it! And there's nothing more precious than bringing your 3 kids into the world with a godly man that the Lord has given you as a life partner. It reminds me of 1 Timothy 4:12, "Don’t let anyone think less of you because you are young. Be an example to all believers in what you say, in the way you live, in your love, your faith, and your purity." Bless you in your 26th year!

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    1. thank you so much for this and for sharing that verse! xo

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  32. happy belated birthday! i wish when i was 26 i had as much wisdom and grace as you do (maybe i will this year, in my 35th!) i enjoy to read your words always. you are a beautiful gift!

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  33. Happy belated birthday! I definitely think your life sounds fabulous. For someone who's wanted to be a mommy for quite some time, it sounds like a wonderful blessing to me. I hope you had a great day of celebrating and reflecting!! xoxo

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  34. Happy happy birthday sweet friend. I think your life sounds like a precious gift. Glamorous nursing schedule and all.
    Love to you! xoxo

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  35. Happy belated birthday!! I hope you had fun on your day!! xoxo

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  36. girlllll. 3 kids by 26? you're following in my footsteps ;)

    keep it up and you'll be looking at 6!
    happy day (belated) :)

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    1. thanks friend! your footsteps would be great ones to follow :) love ya.

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  37. i love this post so much :) happy birthday friend!!

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