a big THANK YOU to my mom (and dad!)

mom stayed and helped us for the first three weeks of laurel's life.  i don't know how we could've done it without her.  thank you mom!  we all miss you so much - you spoiled us rotten!

laurel was very content with "abbi"

dad finally came to fetch his bride.  thanks for sharing her with us, daddy.

i think pops is a goner, too.

uh oh, little girl is already trying to get into pops's pockets!

three weeks AND three years!

laurel is getting so big.  i can't believe she's been here for 3 weeks!

AND today is our 3rd anniversary...

i am the luckiest girl in the world

thank you, pat, for the best three years of my life.  i love you!!

slingin and swingin

mom and i figured out how to work the sling, and we both love it.  thank you kry!

it didn't really work that well for daddy

here i am in the hot pink sling aunt carley sent me.  thank you!

i love my swing, too.

thank you, eleanor!!


two weeks!

here's a two week picture in my new favorite outfit.  THANK YOU aunt ginger!!

yes, we got a new chair in the nursery.  it makes things much easier for my mommy.

hanging out with mama

if i'm hungry, watch out.  i'll latch on to anything!

i'm just so tiny, nothing seems to fit!

riding in the car does this to me.

i am an angel.  period.

i love my daddy soooo much!

and i THINK he loves me too!


the day we got home from the hospital, pat came down with the flu or some other type of virus and was quarantined downstairs on the couch for the next 4 days.  before pat started feeling better, mom caught the virus.  dad could run, but he couldn't hide.  the fever and cough followed him back to tupelo.  last tuesday night i, too, succumbed to the virus, followed by a bladder infection and some other issues i won't go into.  we are very thankful that baby laurel has remained healthy.  and we were VERY thankful to see freddy and patty (pat's parents) arrive on wednesday...         

patty (aka kissy) meeting her first granddaughter

freddy (aka buddy) and aptly named kissy

cloth diapering 101 from grandmother to grandmother

l-a-u-r-e-l, goooooo laurel!!!


happy valentine's day!

some people have asked about laurel's name.  well, if you know pat very well then you weren't at all surprised with our choice of laurel as her first name.  both of pat's parents and then pat and ginger were born and raised in the small town of laurel, mississippi.  pat's grandfather, bill patrick, was mayor of laurel for 12 years.  we think of "laurel" as a family name from both the rayner and the patrick side of pat's family.  her middle name, katherine, comes from my dad's mom, katherine estes johnston - she went by "kitty" but was known as "momee" to her 8 grandkids and 8 great-grandkids.  laurel katherine is the first johnston to be born after momee's death last january.  i consider it an honor to give her name to our little girl.

pretty in pink

these were from monday - i'm a  little behind

she has one of her daddy's expressions in this picture.  just imagine big bushy black eyebrows...

our tiny valentine.  does anybody remember that toy called the glowworm back in the 80's?  well, i think laurel looks like one when she's swaddled up like this.


laurel's story (so far) in pictures...

monday morning in between contractions

it's a girl!  after the surprise C section

that's one proud papa

why does pat look like HE'S in pain?

mesmerized mama

pat has since learned to hold laurel and keep his shoulders out of his ears

my mom and dad, welcoming grandchild number seven (after driving all through the night)

pat getting a diapering lesson from mom


time to go home

this is what i call her "earnest" face.  she makes it all the time

home sweet home!!

our little family.  praise God from whom ALL BLESSINGS flow!

mom trying to give some perspective of how TINY our little girl is...

our first bath.  i am a goner.  who knew i could be so enamored by this tiny person?


laurel katherine is here!

after a morning of surprises, our daughter, laurel, was born at 5:53 am on monday, feb 4th.  she weighed in at 6 lbs, 8 oz and measured 18 inches long.  to say we are absolutely captivated is an understatement.  here are a few pictures to whet your appetite.  more to come...