We’re back from a great time in Ohio.  Andy ended up going with us
(Yeah!)  But now everyone’s asleep.  (Finally.  It only took Jack 2
hours to fall asleep tonight, she sarcastically writes…)  I got a nap
in today, and I should work on this whole stack of mail here to sort
through, but this is the first chance to write about our little Jackson
Paul, who is now 3.  So, the mail can wait for the sake of sentimental
thoughts of my baby’s birthday, right? 
There is a place in our family only Jack can fill.  I’ve learned
so much from him.  I didn’t know when we found we were pregnant with a
4 mo. old what in the world we were going to do, but I’m so thankful
God knew just what we all needed, Jackson Paul. 
Some memories from Jack:
–Seeing him for the first time, I couldn’t stop laughing, crying,
laughing some more, staring at him.  He was so beautiful from the
minute I first saw him…and strangers still comment on how handsome he
–He was laid back from the start and came a week late…I should’ve known this boy would do life on his terms.
–It’s not often a baby comes home from the hospital having gained weight…but our “Hungry Jack” did πŸ™‚
–He got his 1st passport when he was 2 mos. old for his first trip to
Brazil at 4 mos.  (Funny story from then: we were at a resort with
cascading pools of natural hot springs–all for $30/night with
meals–and he would do this fake cough to show off to people…yes,
even at 4 mos.  In Brazil, they bundle up their babies even in the
summer, and he was dressed appropriately to be in a hot springs pool,
but the ladies were saying “Ooooh, that baby is dying of a cough and
she doesn’t even know better.”  Of course they were speaking in
portuguese, so I had no idea what they were saying and Andy was smart
to not tell me until the next day.  They have no problems telling you
what you’re doing wrong with your kids…or what they think you should
do.  It’s funny now πŸ™‚
–Jack has a strong conscience I hope he never loses.  He may sneak
into something but then feel guilty and tell us about it.  Just the
other day, I gave him some ice cream (a rare treat) and he wanted to
make sure it was ok, so he said “I’m gonna eat my ice cream.”  Me:
“Ok.”  Jack: “All gone.”  Me: “Uh-huh.”  Jack: “And you smile at me?”
–Jack has taught me what it looks like to live life with abandon.
–He is a peacemaker.  This is something we’ve prayed so much for and
still do.  He has a bite mark even now and often has scars from his
brother…and yet, Jack continues to turn the other cheek.  He has a
love and enjoyment for Miles that I know comes from God, and I learn so
much from him of sacrificial, unconditional love.  I pray this never
       Times were rough with a 13 mo. old and a newborn.  People always
said it would be easy to have them so close together.  I would never
use the term “easy.”  Miles stopped walking and talking at 13 mos. and
Jack had major colic.  For some peace and quiet, we ate most meals with
the vacuum on because the noise was the only thing to calm Jack down. 
Ironic.  People thought we were nuts.  We were.  But we got through.
        We would hold him for hours and hours on end as he’d scream his
head off.  Those of you who have experienced colic know the
helplessness you feel.  It’s so hard to not be able to do anything to
lessen the pain…it just has to pass, and sometimes I never thought it
would…but it did.  And if I’d known how much I’d miss it, I would
have savored it more.  As exhausting as it was, I can hardly remember
Jack as a baby.  He’s SO independent, and now the fleeting moments I
can hold him are so precious to me. 
       I’m sure this is kinda boring to read.  I just needed to process
it for my sake.  Our little baby is 3.  Miles still calls him “Baby
Jack.”  Our 38 lb. baby πŸ™‚  His life really is a testimony of how God
knows best.  I thought it was a horrible idea to be pregnant with a
newborn, but I can’t imagine life without Jack.  The hard times brought
me to the end of myself, which continues to refine my character.  And I
can enjoy the good times all the more because of how hard times have
So, Happy Birthday Jiggy.  You’re my favorite 3 yr. old in the whole world.  I love you so much.DSC_0017
swing3 popsicle


11 thoughts on “

  1. jilandrich

    How sweet this is. I love your introspection as a parent. You have so much insight and seem to be able to learn so much from your boys. I just love that. Jack is quite the cutie. I love what you wrote about God making him a peace maker. That is so awesome. What a special kid. Happy birthday!

  2. Liffus

    welcome back! and happy birthday to jack! i really like the pics of you guys with your names.we’d love to get together with you guys again soon. this week is really full with family and hospital follow-up blah blah blah but maybe some time next week. i’ll be in touch. i’m excited for you to meet margot! see you soon hopefully!

  3. cherithpeters

    Happy Birthday Jack!  Sara, I have missed your posts SO much for the past few weeks!  Thanks goodness you’re back.  You’re right, God knows just what we need when it comes to the little ones…how much joy we’d miss out on if we were in charge of timing.  I just read your previous post too, for some reason it didn’t get sent to my email like the rest do….anyhow, your passion for missions and the struggle that you two have in trying to find your place is a blessing to me. That sounds aweful, but Steve and I are also very passionate about world missions, and struggle to find our place in it…so it is helpful to hear someone else who is so elequent in expressing the passion, the emotion, the faith that God has a place for all of us in His work, and the patience to find out what that place is.

  4. tsdg

    Happy 3rd Birthday Jack. What a special little guy. I love hearing of God’s faithfulness to your family especially in those tough first months with this little guy and taking care of a 13 month old. God’s grace is so evident in your life and you have so much to share of his grace with others.

  5. peteandheather

    Happy B-day Jack!  And welcome back!  I love reading about God’s faithfulness in the lives of others–it’s such a great reminder to me to be aware of His faithfulness in my own life.  By the way, definitely not boring!  πŸ™‚  I love the combo of the funny and sweet stories, along with hearing about the little man that God is molding Jack to be.  (And the great pics are fun too!)  πŸ™‚  I hope you get to enjoy a somewhat relaxing week now that you’re back home.

  6. spies_likeus

    Awww, Happy Birthday Baby Jack πŸ™‚ What an awesome kid. These memories are so sweet. Xanga is great because these memories will be even sweeter in 10 years, or 20 years πŸ™‚  You can always look back and read this. And how awesome to, like you said, have a living example of how God knows best πŸ™‚ That’s amazing and it’s something I need to remember on a daily basis πŸ™‚ Miss you !


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