Tuesday, February 14, 2012


Bobby had a sock problem.

Every time he took off his socks, they ended up inside-out. Apparently, that's just his natural tendency for sock-removal! Which, is okay, except that Bobby's sock problem...

...meant that I had a sock problem.

Every time I did the laundry and folded socks, I was spending additional time turning them the right way. Not a big problem, obviously, in the big scheme of things, but an annoying extra step in the already unpleasant task of laundry folding.

I tried to do my wifely laundry duty with little complaint, and lovingly fixed the socks. (Admittedly, I considered leaving them as they were a few times, but that wouldn't have been kind, and I don't think I ever stooped that low.) But, I did regularly mention that it was wearisome, and would help me considerably if that was taken care of before the socks made their way to me.

For some time, nothing changed. I don't fault Bobby for it. Habits are hard to break...especially when it changes the way one changes clothes at the end of a long work day. Anyway, the message didn't seem to be getting through, and I was preparing myself for what I thought could be a lifelong pattern.

And then, just like that, it all changed. The laundry basket was full of clean socks, not a single one of them inside-out! He did it! It didn't come naturally, but he made the change deliberately, out of love.

It's a little thing, I know. (The most meaningful expressions of love often are.) But, every time I fold the laundry, and the socks are easier to deal with, I think about how much Bobby loves me. Does it matter to him how he takes his socks off? It does now. Because he knows it matters to me. And it's a deliberate demonstration of his love.

What this sock-folding lesson has taught me, and continues to remind me with each laundry load, is that my expressions of love to Bobby must also be deliberate. They must be intentional. It doesn't always come naturally to show him how much I care, which means that I need to make intentional efforts. Daily life, ever-changing pregnancy hormones, and a brain continually focused on preparing for baby can take my mind off of expressing my love for him as frequently and clearly as I should.

Today marks our eight-year anniversary of "togetherness". Our relationship has changed during these past eight years. We used to be high school sweethearts; now we're married and having a baby. And, I know that our interactions with each other will continue to change as children enter the picture and our family grows. My desire for this next chapter of our love story is that our love will continue to grow, as well, through intentional, deliberate efforts.

It matters. And, it's worth it.

Happy Valentine's Day, handsome. 
Thanks for being my husband. 
Thanks for all you teach me. 
And, thanks for taking care of your socks. 
I love you!

Monday, February 13, 2012

The Big Reveal

The waiting is almost over...tomorrow is the big reveal! Tomorrow night, over dessert (chocolate-covered strawberries...a Valentine's Day tradition in the Phillips household), Bobby and I will privately open the envelope that has been staring at us from the mantle since our ultrasound last week, and learn whether or not we're expecting a little boy or a little girl. (Thankfully, the ultrasound didn't accidentally reveal baby's gender to us...not even close. In fact, I have my doubts as to whether or not Mr. Ultrasound Technician actually saw what he needed to, but that's neither here nor there. We'll trust that he did.)

Much to the surprise of several friends, the waiting has not been difficult for us...truly! In fact, there have been times in the past couple of days when I've questioned whether or not I even still want to find out early.  Practically, it makes so much more sense to find out now. The nursery can be painted and decor chosen specifically in shades of pink or blue, the wardrobe can be gender-specific, and goodness, I know we're going to need all the time we can get to settle on a name...particularly if Baby Phillips is a 'she'. Still, there's still the traditional part of me that says, "don't you want to wait until delivery? Why do you want to take away one of life's only surprises?" Of course, we'll still be surprised tomorrow...but it isn't exactly the same as waiting until birth, which is the plan I thought I wanted until five months ago.

Oh, well. All that to say, we're finding out tomorrow! Second thoughts (and nerves) aside, we made the decision months ago, and I'm certain it'll be highly romantic. Valentine's Day PLUS the celebration of our eight years as a couple. February 14th is a particularly special day for us, and learning more about the person joining our family in a few months will make the day even more memorable. I'm incredibly excited! Even if I am a little apprehensive....

Friends have offered guesses as to what they suspect baby is (and it's so much fun when they do!), and have asked whether or not Bobby and I have a preference.

For me, that's an impossible question.

On the one hand, I'd love to have a baby boy. I'd love to watch Bobby teach him to throw a baseball, and I'd love imagining what my husband was like as a little boy himself. I'd love experiencing the messes and the mud, and learning all about trucks and trains and superheroes. I'd love seeing Bobby teach him how to be the kind of godly gentleman that he is. And, I'd love to be an example of the kind of godly woman I'd hope for my son to someday make his bride.

But, on the other hand, I'd love to have a baby girl. I'd love to see her melt her daddy's heart, and watch Bobby tenderly protect his little girl. I'd love to see glimpses of myself as she grows up. I'd love playing 'dress-up' and dreaming together. I'd love to show her how to take care of a home, how to lovingly handle her dolls, and picture her as a mother herself. I'd love to teach her to wait for a man as special as her daddy is, and I'd love watching Bobby walk her down the aisle someday.

Either way, I am content in knowing that it's part of God's perfect design...that He knew long ago whether we'd be welcoming a son or a daughter this summer...that there's a plan for the child He's creating for us...and that our little one will be fiercely loved by its' parents, and by the Lord.

How can we be anything but overjoyed, whatever the envelope reveals?!

For the record...
Bobby thinks it's a girl.
I think it's a boy. 
Although, whether as a result of intuition or Bobby's influence, I've started to think 'girl' in the past couple of days, as well.
know one of us is right!

Monday, February 6, 2012

He or She?

Tomorrow is a big day! Tomorrow we have our 19-week ultrasound, which could, along with (hopefully) providing reassurance that our little one is growing and functioning well, reveal baby's gender.

I say "could" because although in less than twenty-four hours we could know whether we're having a boy or a girl, the plan is to wait even longer. Seven more days, to be exact. (Maybe we're crazy.)

But, Valentine's Day is just a week away, and the plan for our appointment tomorrow is to ask the ultrasound technician to write down the gender on a piece of paper and place it in an envelope for us to open together on the 14th. (Romantic, right? We think so.)

With that said, I have been mentally preparing myself for the possibility that the secret could be revealed tomorrow morning. We could accidentally see a little, uh, "something"...or, not see a certain little "something"...if you know what I mean...and I think you do.

And, that realization is absolutely surreal. Because whether we're surprised tomorrow or when we open the envelope in a week, I'm sure that learning our baby's gender will be another "this is really happening!" moment. I can only imagine the new connection to and excitement for this child that we'll experience when that happens.

There's a difference in saying...in knowing..."we're having a baby", and "we're having a son" or "we're having a daughter". I'm so looking forward to that.

He or she? We shall see! (Or, will we?)