I’m glad you are here to celebrate! Share a link to your blog post below and/or use #celebratelu to share celebrations on Twitter. Check out the details here. Celebrate This Week goes live on Friday night around 10(ish). Consider it as a weekend celebration. Whenever it fits in your life, add your link. Please leave a little comment love for the person who links before you.

I turned my Instagram account public. I’ve been using it to collect & document celebrations. I love it. Please follow me there: @ruth_ayres to find celebrations throughout the week.

My one goal for the summer is making all of the difference. It’s made me slow down, reminding me of my One Little Word for the year — unhurried. I’ve held their hands in the car and walking to the skate park. I’ve held their hands in the grocery store and on the couch. I’ve held their hands saying goodnight and good morning.

I’ve thought about what it means to hold their hands in the figurative sense. So I’ve taken an extra breath and listened more. I’ve ran upstairs for them to grab a forgotten item. I’ve taken them to the library two extra times.

The most remarkable thing has happened.

They’ve started holding my hand first.

And I’m reminded of the truth that allows me to believe that just maybe I can be the momma they need. Children need fans. They need people to invest in them. They need to know they’re capable and loved and worthy of someone’s time.

I hold their hands and somehow it turns into something so much bigger.


This is the perfect anniversary memory.

This conversation from earlier today.
Jay: Wait a minute! Aren’t you guys going to go to do something for your anniversary?
Me: We’re hanging out with you guys. Swimming in the rain, riding the boat, eating cake before dinner.
Jay: No, I mean aren’t you going to do something just for you guys?
Andy: And miss tubing with you?
Me: And miss the jokes and the fun on the dock?
Jay: You don’t wanna go do something grown-up fun?

Andy and I laughed. Nope. We don’t wanna be anywhere but right here.
And it reminded me how I waited for this, how we used to imagine summer days with our kids. I expected a little girl with my curls and a son with his eyes. This is not our reality — nor my dream anymore. Instead, we have so much more than we could have ever imagined.
A daughter who is becoming herself and another who has bold confidence. A son with an extra dose of creativity and another with an extra dose of all-things-boy. We don’t know the endless diapers of having four kids within a year of one another, nor did we weather the stress of sleepless nights and rocking them to sleep.
Instead we know how to build forever and how to weave threads into the fabric of a family. We know the how to weather the ugliness of being scraped by the world. We know how to make a family safe.
We know we’re in this together. Forever.
I can’t imagine a better anniversary gift than this.
Share your celebrations below. Happy Independence Day!


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  1. It's the sweetest thing when something happens that is good and that you weren't expecting, like that hand-holding. Love the picture, Ruth. Wow, those kids look so happy! There must be a celebration going on! Happy Independence Day, bottle rockets, sprinklers and all.

  2. This is beautiful Ruth. Every time you write about your family I am reminded (as an adopted child) of the gift. Happy Anniversary.

  3. Ruth, Your words brought me to tears and gave me hope and really touched me! “And it reminded me how I waited for this, how we used to imagine summer days with our kids. I expected a little girl with my curls and a son with his eyes. This is not our reality — nor my dream anymore. Instead, we have so much more than we could have ever imagined.” As someone who is still waiting, your post reminds me to have faith that God's plans for me are greater than my own dreams. Thank you!

  4. Through the gift of your story I get to see a glimpse of God's BIG story of grace and redemption! It makes me so happy to hear your words and to see those precious faces of the kids. Relaxed, happy and loved. They are, we are! Security for the trials that life brings, knowing through experience that perseverance is rewarded. Celebrating how God brought you and Andy together to create this part of His family!

  5. What a fun pic! Spending anniversaries with your forever family is the best celebration ever! And two extra trips to the library – awesome! I want to know what they're reading! Happy fourth and happy anniversary!

  6. Ruth, Your posts always comfort me. My granddaughter is being adopted by her aunt and uncle out of necessity and love. When you write about your children, it reminds me of Shakespeare's quote, “The quality of mercy (love) is not strained. It droppeth as the gentle rain from heaven upon the place beneath. It is twice blest: it blest him that gives and him that takes.”
    Ruth, you are truly twice blest.

  7. Forever is a wonderful thing that you have made real for all of us. Hand holding leads to a commonality to “weather the ugliness of being scraped by the world.” Love this post!