Caps, Gowns, and a Crib

We had a fun and busy weekend! It began Friday with us heading to Mississippi for the day to meet some of Daniel's best friends from college for lunch. They had been in Florida on vacation and were on their way back to Arkansas. We hadn't seen them in almost a year, so it was fun to catch up and laugh together. We then spent the rest of the day messing around in Mississippi. I've read several places how important it is (especially toward the end of a pregnancy) to spend as much quality time as possible with your mate before the arrival of the little one because once he/she comes, life becomes a bit more hectic. Friday was a perfect day for Daniel and I to just get away from the city and enjoy each other. Hopefully we'll be able to take some more day trips like this one in the next few weeks before Riley makes his appearance!

Saturday morning two of Daniel's best friends here at the seminary graduated with their Master of Divinity degrees. Shawn and Daniel have been very close since college (both Ouachita grads), so it's been fun sharing seminary life with Shawn and his wife, Lesley (and just recently, their newest addition, Hannah). This time of transition for them, though, is a little bittersweet for us. They will be moving in less than 2 weeks to Kansas City, Missouri, where Shawn will direct a new program called Fusion at the Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. Don't get me wrong, we are SO excited for Shawn and Lesley...this is a very exciting opportunity for them, and we know God is going to do mighty things through both of them. However, we are also going to miss them terribly! Thomas (Daniel's other close friend that graduated) wants to pursue a PhD, so he and his wife, Amanda, and their son, J.T., will still be here in New Orleans while he applies to PhD programs and completes some prerequisite courses. We're thankful we're not having to say goodbye to both families at once! Here are some pics from the big day...

Daniel and I saw Shawn before graduation...and it's a good thing, because he had no clue how to put on all the graduation garb! :)

NOBTS Faculty

Here we are with Thomas and Amanda Hudson...congratulations, Thomas!

Daniel and Shawn - I'm so thankful Daniel has such good guy friends who encourage him and hold him accountable!

The Bramlett's and the Branscum's - can't wait until Riley and Hannah are old enough to play with each other!

The excitement of the weekend did not end after graduation on Saturday! Our crib arrived (thanks to some amazing friends who brought it from Jacksonville, FL), so we spent Saturday night putting it together and setting it up with the bedding! It's definitely becoming more real to me now that a little one will be occupying that room very soon! :)

Daniel in the early stages of assembling the crib. We had no instructions, and my incredibly talented husband did such a great job of figuring it all out! We didn't even have any left-over parts! Yay! :)

Here is the gorgeous, solid-wood crib! Love it!

I had so much fun putting all the bedding on!

Hopefully Riley will do lots of this while in this crib! :)

Riley's room is finally beginning to look like his room! For the longest time it's just been a huge storage area. Two of my friends, though, who were due a month and a half and two months before me just recently had their babies (both early), so I definitely want to be as prepared as possible in case Riley decides he wants to see the world prior to July 29!

Speaking of Riley, all seems to be well with the little man. He is moving like crazy, which I love! Friday night I was laying on the couch resting and realized he had the hiccups. That was the first time I've felt them. I felt bad for him, though, because they didn't just last a few seconds...he probably had them for a good 3 or 4 minutes...I guess I really am passing on my hiccuping to our son! I can't wait to see what other characteristics he's gotten from both Daniel and me. Just in case you're wanting to keep up with my belly progress, here I am last Thursday at 29 weeks and 1 day!
According to the world all around me, I do not look like I'm going to have a baby at the end of July. I still haven't figured out how to respond to people when they tell me that! I guess they mean it as a compliment, but honestly, I'd rather they just not say anything. I mean, I'm in my 3rd trimester...I want to look pregnant! :) Oh well...I know Riley's in there, and as long as the Dr. says everything looks great, I'm happy! Tomorrow the countdown begins...just 10 weeks to go!



This past Friday night Daniel took the RA's camping. I didn't really have any plans for the night until my best friend, Kristen, called earlier in the week and said she was going to be in Hattiesburg for the weekend. One of my other best friends, Anne, lives in Hattiesburg (Mississippi - about an hour and a half from N.O.) and recently had a baby in late December. Our schedules have been so crazy that I hadn't even met baby Kristen! This past weekend was the perfect chance for me to kill many birds with one stone! So, Friday after work, I headed to the "burg," as many locals (or at least my friends) call it.

Here we are last year at the wedding...Kristen (on left) was my maid of honor and Anne (on right) was my matron of honor

When I arrived at Anne's house, I immediately noticed all of the gift bags on the other side of the room. Just to put it into perspective, the only people there that night were myself, Kristen, Anne, and Anne's husband, Trey. There were at least 8 large gift bags sitting there waiting for me to open. I could not believe it! Here's a pic (not a great one because it was taken with my phone) of most of the stash they gave us. What incredibly supportive and generous friends!!!

There have been so many times in my life that I've literally said out loud, I don't know what I would do without these two. This was definitely another one of those times. Just as a side note, Kristen and Anne are the ones who literally brought me back to New Orleans in 2006 kicking and screaming (after I had been gone for a year because of Hurricane Katrina). They were convinced (even though I wasn't!) it was God's will for me to move back, and I'm so thankful they listened to Him because about a week after they dropped me off, I met Daniel on the first day of class. :) And the rest is history...

Besides the presents and being reunited with friends, another BIG highlight of the weekend was meeting Kristen Lynn Wilson for the first time. Look at this adorable little girl!

She is such a happy little thing! Even when she first wakes up, she is all smiles! Love her!

Here she is playing with Aunt Kris (the crazy one, I mean, amazing one she was named after)

Aunt Laura and baby Kristen...I sure hope Riley's such a happy baby!

What a fun time we all had! Anne gave me LOTS of great advice about parenting and preparing for Riley's arrival. I am SO thankful for all of the wisdom she passed on! Kristen, as usual, threw in jokes every now and then and kept us all laughing. It had been six months since I'd seen either of them, and I am just praying now that it doesn't take another six months for us to enjoy a reunion. Remember ladies, Riley's coming in 3 short months...hint, hint! :)