Sunday, October 31, 2010

Our Object

"To be like Christ.
To displace self from the inner throne,
and to enthrone Him;
to make not the slightest compromise with the smallest sin.
We aim at nothing less than to walk with God all day long,
to abide every hour in Christ
and He and His words in us,
to love God with all the heart
and our neighbors as ourselves…
It is possible to cast away every care on Him daily,
and to be at peace amidst pressure,
to see the will of God in everything,
to put away all bitterness and clamor and evil speaking,
daily and hourly.
It is possible by unreserved resort to divine power
under divine conditions
to become strongest through and through
at our weakest point."

-Bishop Moule




Three little, precious people are the "divine conditions" under which God daily calls me to "unreserved resort to divine power." Oh, Father, give me more grace to turn away from myself and toward you!

Thank you for the quote, Jacqua!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

I Call This One...

"Just Back from the Library."

Monday, October 25, 2010

Seven Years

Today is the seventh anniversary of our wedding. I can't believe how quickly it's gone.


This is a picture of David and me the last time we got away, fall of 2008. I'm happy to say that we are currently away again, returning later today. Thanks for making it possible, Mom!

And thank you, my Love, for my anniversary trip, and for the seven wonderful years that we're marking today. God has been merciful to us.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Matchy, Matchy




Having two little girls is too much fun!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010


On October 2nd, my longtime friend and former college roommate got married.
I met Katherine Ches Reynolds in 1998, when we were both freshmen at James Madison University. No doubt, humanly speaking, it was one of the upperclassmen on the Executive Team of InterVarsity who placed us in the same small group, but it was the Lord who slowly brought us together as friends. And it was He who brought Katherine to Maryland after graduation and made her a part of Covenant Life Church.

And then, about six years later, God brought her Tom Martin.

(Disclaimer: My camera is not very well, and many of the pictures I took that day turned out very blurry. I apologize in advance, but I'm still going to post some, as they're the best I have.)

The following names, which you might recognize, appeared in the program for Tom and Katherine's wedding.

Nancy Nalle: bridesmaid
Don Nalle: groomsman
Lena Nalle: scripture reading
Cara Wilcox: bridesmaid
Meg Wilcox: flower girl
Matthew Wilcox: ring bearer

Quite the family affair, no?

Meg was terribly excited about the wedding, starting many weeks in advance. I mean, new dress, new shoes, basket of flower petals, walking down the aisle to prepare the way for THE BRIDE... what's not to be excited about? Oh, and let's not not forget getting your hair done with the big girls...

I know this is cliche, but Meg honestly looked like a picture-book angel in her beautiful up-do, courtesy of the amazing Mrs. Erin Hill.

From the back:

Our dear friend Miss Mariel was on hand to help with Meg and Matthew that day. Meg was just a little bit happy to have her as a playmate. Can you tell?

The bride, getting all dolled up for her man...

Nana and Meggie...
IMG_8455 me makes three generations!

Given the level of family involvement, I don't have any shots from the ceremony. But it was lovely. And I didn't go down the aisle with a crying, contorted, red face (like I might possibly have done in another friend's wedding, when I was pregnant with my first child). Abstention from extreme weeping was my contribution to the loveliness. However, I definitely needed the wadded up tissues that rode incognito in my bouquet when Katherine came down the aisle on her dad's arm. If her serene, locked-on-Tom smile wasn't enough to get me going, the tears sliding down Tom's cheeks and onto his tux would have done it.

My favorite shot of the day is this one, taken during formal-portrait time, as the bridal party was waiting for the family shots.
OK, so let's state the obvious, shall we? Now well into their fifties, my parents are still pretty much the best-looking "real folks" (air-brushed magazine people excluded) that I know.

And Matthew? Well, Matthew was, um... profoundly cute in his little suit. And speaking of the clothes, this little man was almost as excited as his sister about the new wedding duds. I don't know that I ever imagined a small boy being quite that thrilled with a pair of black, patent-leather shoes. I kid you not. By the by, I think that Matthew looks more than a bit like my dad in the shot above. Any takers on that notion?

This picture is lousy, but the moment that followed it was very dear. I put my camera down and watched my friend of twelve years, standing there next to her husband, arrayed in her pristine, bridal white... and then she glanced at me, and we locked eyes for a long moment. And as my tears welled up and overflowed, my eyes were telling her, I can't believe we're here. I can't believe all that God has done in our friendship. I can't believe you let me be a part of this day, your day. You are standing next to your husband! You look so beautiful. You are going to love being married. I can't believe we're here!

And then she mouthed "I love you," and I mouthed, "I love you too." And she went back to the conversation with Tom, and I dabbed my eyes with a napkin and thought about how stupid it is to wear make-up at weddings.

One more shot of my cutie-tooties at the reception:

And this is Matthew's portrait of Peter Bang, wedding photographer extraordinaire.

Hey, Peter! I know you're super busy, but I sure am looking forward to seeing some of the REAL wedding pictures from Tom and Katherine's day. Hint, hint. Not that I've been waiting, or stalking your blog or anything like that.

OK, so Peter's not reading this. But a certain K Martin might be, some day, and if so, I want to say: thanks. Thanks so much for making my family a part of your wonderful wedding day. We can't wait to be a part of your married life too.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Visit from Dacia and Josh

Dave's sister and her fiance came to the D.C. area last week, so we had the rare treat of a visit with Aunt Dacia and Uncle Josh. Meg and Matthew were both excited to see them. The last time they were here was shortly after Matthew was born!

Here is Aunt Dacia helping Meg with a jewelry-making craft.


Dacia and Josh are very generous and came laden with gifts for the kids. Here M&M sport their new Disney t-shirts and their new hats.

That night we got to go out, just us grown-ups, for our favorite brick oven pizza at Laurienzo's. It was so nice to get some adult talk time!

The next morning we got the usual parting picture of everyone together...

and one final, surprise shot, captured by Meg or Matthew.

Before leaving town, Josh and Dacia took Meg, Matthew and Dave to our local Build-A-Bear Factory, where our kids got to choose and create their very own stuffed buddies. Unfortunately, I wasn't able to be there to get pictures, but I took one at home today just so you could see what they made. This is Matthew with Kitty and Meg with Rosie the Bunny.
These animals have seen very little down time since they arrived in our home, let me tell you. They have utterly vanquished Meg and Matthew's former bedtime pals, been at the center of many a game, and been fiercely protected from a certain baby sister by their vigilant owners. I think that Auntie hit a home run with this outing.

Dacia and Josh, we're so grateful that you came! Thanks for taking two extra days from your very busy lives to hang out with us and bless our kiddos. We look forward to seeing you again!

Monday, October 04, 2010

Beach Pic I Forgot

I'm interrupting my recap of last week to feature this photo, which I somehow forgot to include in my beach posts. Here it is, a little moment of father-and-son fun:

How come boys can jump so high? It's not even fair!

Sunday, October 03, 2010

Finally Home

Last Tuesday, Aaron came home.
You can't make out the message on his shirt in these pictures. It says, "I was worth the wait." Boy, were you ever, Buddy!

He is one beautiful kid. My dying camera doesn't even come close to doing him justice.

Just a brief synopsis of the welcome party:

A small crowd of friends and family waited at Dulles International Airport for the flight from Frankfurt to arrive. Julia's dad, Mr. Arnold, was there with the long-suffering, expectant big brothers, Ben and Elijah. Joining them were Dave, me, and the kids, Mom, Uncle Eddie, Aunt Heidi, and a friend of the Rob Nalles from their community theater group in Charlottesville. (Carl has my eternal gratitude for taking Matthew for a spin on his motorized bike thing and letting him play with the headlight. Our son had no idea that Heaven is located in baggage claim!)

Finally, Rob and Julia emerged from Customs with their prize. Aaron first greeted us by sticking out his tongue, but his smile almost split his face in two. It soon became clear to everyone that he was quite pleased to be the center of so much attention. He strutted around like a little rooster, showing us his stroller-steering skills. And while Aaron reveled in his new fans' adoration, I enjoyed seeing my older cousins reunited with their folks after many, many days of separation. Ben and Elijah have been troopers.

Of course, they are young men, so there were no tears or anything. But I think they were happy to see their Dad and Mom again.

You can read the full story of Aaron's homecoming here and learn more about how he's settling into his new home and family here.

We can hardly wait to get to know our new cousin more. Welcome home, Aaron Vanya Nalle!

Our Week

Whew! What a week it's been since we arrived home from the beach!

First we got to be there when this little guy arrived on American soil.

We had a great visit with another set of family members...

and finished the week out with a wedding!

More to come on all three events.