Wednesday, December 2, 2009


The Vest family spent Thanksgiving with the rest of the Vests in Nashville this year. We had a wonderful weekend celebrating the holiday and eating everything in sight. I have loved being a member of the Vest clan and time together is especially fun now that there are three little ones to play with. I love that Nolan is sandwiched in between his two Vest cousins - Jon Harper and Virginia.

Jeremy and his brother Johnathan took their boys out for a 5K run - the Habitrot. They got in an extra workout pushing those jogging strollers. The best part - while they were running, I was sleeping lazily in my bed.....which I had all to myself :) Nolan spent the 5K sleeping as well thanks to my sister-in-law Elizabeth who loaned us Jon Harper's Patagonia fleeze bunting.

Other favorite moments of the holiday week:
The Vest family photo shoot (see pictures below), watching Biggest Loser, being treated to a mani & pedi by my sister-in-law Jennifer, catching up with Sara over Starbucks, free babysitting while the sibs went to see The Blind Side, a delicious Thanksgiving meal prepared by Nola, Vest family breakfast at Cracker Barrel - always a special treat, having lunch with my parents and grandparents at the lake, laughing as my Grandmommy retold the renowned story of my grandparents first meeting in Centennial Park when they were 16 and 21, receiving a beat down from my dad after challenging him to a game of Bible Trivia, a scrumptious brunch at Liz's house, and Nolan laughing hysterically at Jon Harper's Elmo doll. I just realized how many of my favorite moments involved food! Oh well.....such is the season :)

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Catching Up

The Vest family has been joyfully adjusting to life with a four month old, but sadly the blog has taken a backseat as of late. So here's to catching up. I am personally thankful that my week of travel is over. I had to leave Nolan for the first time the week before last - two nights at a staff retreat during the week and another night on a teen girls' trip to Atlanta over the weekend. It was hard on the heart to leave my little boy behind. Jeremy did an amazing job taking care of him and their time together was very special to them both. They covered some expansive terrain in the jogging stroller and went to Home Depot. I returned home to a house that was in perfect condition and Jeremy took pride in rattling off his list of house-cleaning accomplishments. I appreciated the clean house, even though part of the motivation behind it was to show me how simple it is to do both childcare and housework in the same day. However, it is rumored that Nolan watched Baby Einstein four times in a row.

I am loving my part-time schedule and cherishing the days at home with Nolan. God has been giving me some neat ministry opportunities with some teen girls that have been both challenging and refreshing. Just when I begin to think that I'm not as fruitful as a part-time youth minister, He overwhelms me with a new way to be used. He's pretty good like that. Nolan has dropped down to the 90th percentile for height and weight and clocked in at exactly 18 pounds at our last appointment. We had so much fun at our church Trunk or Treat this week. Nolan, dressed as a Tootsie Roll and sitting in his bouncy seat, was the main attraction of our poorly decorated trunk. We passed out Tootsie Rolls to complement our theme, though I think they're kinda gross - sorry kids!

Here are some favorite pictures from the last two months of the cute little boy we love so dearly:

Monday, September 14, 2009

A Tribute to Pa

This past Thursday my family lost a beloved member of the Lowry clan. My grandfather "Pa" was 77 years old. He is now in heaven with our Savior Jesus and is reunited with his beautiful wife - our "Nana." Heaven is now a sweeter place because Nana and Pa are there. Pa has been waiting for this reunion for the past two years as my Nana's passing was very difficult for him. On Sunday, September 13th we gathered together in Manchester, TN to celebrate his life. My mom's side of the family is very close so time together with them was such a gift. Even though both of my Lowry grandparents are now gone, I have no doubt that our family will continue to have many a joyful time together.

I had some regret that Pa never got to meet Nolan. We visited him in the Critical Care Unit in Murfeesboro over Labor Day, but it was not safe for Nolan to enter the CCU (many serious cases of the flu). I got to squeeze Pa's hand and he squeezed back really hard. I got to tell him I loved him. Though he couldn't utter those words back that afternoon, I didn't need to hear them that day. Pa was forever telling me how much he loved me and how proud he was of me and Jeremy. Though Pa never met Nolan on this side of heaven, he felt him kick in my belly at a shower in Nashville. Pa told me Nolan needed a spanking for kicking him so hard.

My grandparents' house in Manchester is filled with so many precious memories from my childhood. Pa had a garden full of vegetables and a farm that hosted both cows and pigs. As a child I once watched a mother pig give birth to piglets and the moment was breathtaking. My cousin Katie and I used to roller skate in the basement and swing around the poles. We would make up dance shows like "Circus Celebration", put advertisement signs around the house, and charge our aunts and uncles 10 cents to come to the show. In that house I discovered a love for playing the piano and I loved listening to my Nana sing alto. On their farm I learned how to do cartwheels, watched Martins, and took many a tractor ride with Pa. Twenty of us would gather around for an intense game of Trivia Pursuit (boys vs girls) and then we'd end the evening singing old hymns. The casserole dishes at Thanksgiving and Christmas meals filled every ounce of counter space in Nana's kitchen. Those are the kind of meals I believe they'll serve in heaven. My friends that know me best can attest to my mischievous side. I inherited this trait directly from Pa. He loved a good prank!

My dad shared some neat thoughts at the funeral. For the past couple of years my Pa has been showing signs of early Alzheimer's disease. In the evenings he would get confused and ask those around him if he could go home - even though he was in his own house. They would gently tell Pa that he was home. A few minutes later, Pa would ask the same question again, "Can I go home now?" My dad pointed out in his talk that all this time we assumed Pa was just talking to us. In the quiet places of Pa's heart, God was preparing him to go to his real home.

Dad also read two verses from one of my favorite songs at the funeral. It was a fitting reminder of the hope and victory we have through Jesus Christ!

In Christ alone, my hope is found

He is my light, my strength, my song

This cornerstone, this solid ground

Firm through the fiercest drought and storm

What heights of love, what depths of peace

When fears are stilled, when strivings cease

My comforter, my all in all

Here in the love of Christ I stand

No guilt in life, no fear in death

This is the power of Christ in me

From life's first cry to final breath

Jesus commands my destiny

No power of hell, no scheme of man

Can ever pluck me from His hand

Till He returns or calls me home

Here in the power of Christ I'll stand

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Seven Weeks and Changing Fast

Here are a few photo updates of our growing boy.  Nolan is changing so fast.  Jeremy weighed him on our bathroom scale this weekend and he is already at 14 pounds....but sometimes that scale isn't always so accurate.  That's what I tell myself anyways when it's higher than I think it should be.  

Thank you Parker and Savannah for letting us borrow your swing.  
Nolan loves it so much that he swung in it until the batteries died.

Already cheering for the VOLS

Nolan has his mommy's eyes and his daddy's forehead

Another bath - we're getting better at these (much less screaming)

Friday, August 7, 2009

Four Year Anniversary

The Wedding Day

First time to meet Jeremy's family early on in our dating days

Yesterday Jeremy and I celebrated our four year anniversary.  My parents are in Montgomery for the weekend so they kept Nolan while Jeremy and I went out on a date, a new concept since we've entered the world of parenting!  We enjoyed a delicious meal at Carrabba's - the same restaurant where we had our very first date almost six years ago.  We had fun reminiscing about the conversation we shared on that evening.  We talked about our jobs, families, the ZOE Group, Lipscomb, and pleding social clubs - so random!  We laughed as we compared this conversation to the one we had last night - how in the world are we going to send Nolan to college?!?  We've come a long ways since 2003 and the journey has been wonderful and amazing every step of the way.  I praise God for giving me such a Godly, loving, thoughtful man to be my husband.  He is an incredible role model for Nolan, a great provider for our family, and my very best friend!  I love you Jeremy Vest!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Nolan's New Laugh

Who knew the mommy was so funny?  :)

Monday, July 27, 2009

Doctor's Visit, Favorite Pictures, and Two Greats

At his 5 week appointment, Nolan weighed 11 pounds, 10 ounces and measured 22 3/4 inches.  This big ol' boy is in the 93rd percentile for weight and the 90th for height.  His formerly 14 inch noggin is now 15 1/2 inches (no more newborn hats).  We had a great appointment and Dr. Trumbull said Nolan is the picture of health.  Thank you God - what a gift!
My friend Lindsey Bagwell took this picture of Nolan at his one month photo session.  It has been so fun to see his sweet little smiles.  His daddy made him laugh for the first time this past weekend!
Time with the Daddy while the Mommy goes out for a pedicure
Feeling a wee bit nervous about his impending bath
This past weekend, we drove up to New Albany, Mississippi to visit Jeremy's grandparents.  On the way there, we were talking about how lucky Nolan is to have five living great grandparents.  The most we've ever had was one.  Here are the first two "greats."  Nolan will meet the other three greats on Labor Day weekend.
Jeremy's mamaw is 94 and still cooks up a storm.
Jeremy's papaw is 95 and still mows his own lawn.
Also this weekend - my Aunt Faye and Uncle Jerry drove over from Atlanta on Sunday to meet their first great nephew!  Nolan, who is now giving sweet little smiles, was so happy to meet them.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Family Reunion

We made the short trek to Dauphin Island, Alabama for a family reunion with my mom's whole side of the family.  We had fun introducing Nolan to all of the family.  Jeremy and I were blessed to have so much help with him that week.  Jeremy got to play several rounds of golf and I enjoyed some time on the beach and some good reading.  We also got hooked on Lost.  My parents brought Season 1 along for the week, and pretty sure Jeremy and I are now half way through Season 3 :)  During the week Nolan took his first bottle and even made it through the movie "My Sister's Keeper."
A Family Photo

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Two Week Check-Up

Nolan had his first doctor's appointment at two weeks.  We sure are proud of our boy for putting on the ounces.  He's been a great eater so far.  Nolan gained back his birth weight (8 lbs, 14 oz) and then some!

We love our pediatrician Dr. Trumbull.  We were relieved to hear that all of Nolan's constant noises (hiccuping, sneezing, grunting, and pooting) are completely normal.  Whew!

Dr. Trumbull showing us the best position for burping a baby.  
It works like a charm every time!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

The Vests Visit

Jeremy's family came for a visit to see their new nephew/grandson.  Here are some photos from their time with Nolan.

Papa John and Nodie with their two grandsons
Aunt Elizabeth (due with baby Virginia August 27)
Jon Harper takes a good look at "be be"
The Vest brothers and their boys
Cousins Ben and Bre

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Getting our Z's

Nolan has been a GREAT sleeper during his first week at home.  Here are some of his favorite sleeping positions.  We call this time of day "bottom time."  Around mid-morning, Nolan get to lay on his belly in his crib - butt naked - and listen to his Amy Grant lullabies CD. "Bottom time" is great for airing out the hiney and getting rid of diaper rash.

The Shoulder Holder position - perfect for snuggling

Sleeping soundly in the crib

The thumb is a great soother when the pacifier falls out

Everybody wins in this sleeping postion

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

The Wrights

Here are some shots of Nolan with my side of the family.  My mom and dad have spent this first week with us at our house helping with the baby.  What a blessing it's been to have home cooked meals every night, clean laundry, and an extra set of hands to change dirty diapers.

Lee Nana

Uncle Sam

Aunt Hailey

Monday, June 22, 2009

Nolan Robert is here!

We arrived at the hospital on Wednesday morning at 5 a.m. for a scheduled induction.  Based on our last ultrasound, Nolan was expected to be a big boy and if a normal delivery was going to happen, he needed to come as soon as possible.  After about 11 hours of painless labor (thanks to a wonderful epidural), I heard the nurse say, "turn on the baby warmer - it's time for her to push."  Nolan's head was 14 inches in diameter, so it took quite a bit of pushing before his entrace into the world.  After an hour and a half, he arrived just in time for Wednesday night church - 6:28 p.m.  Nolan weighed 8 lbs, 14 oz and was 20.5 inches long.  What a gift to be apart of such a wonderful miracle.  We'll forever treasure the first moment we laid eyes on our new son.  His big bright eyes and head full of blonde hair were a beautiful sight indeed.  Thank you God for a healthy baby and a safe delivery.  It's still hard to believe he's actually ours.

Jeremy's first moment with Nolan.  A few seconds later, Jeremy noticed the front of his shirt was soaked with pee.  Welcome to fatherhood!

First family photo

Sleeping soundly

Head full of blonde hair

Noley Poley is ready to go home

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Nolan Becomes an Eight Ball

This week at work, we made a video with some of the teens in order to reveal the identity of our new part-time intern - Hannah Chatham!!! When Nolan comes, I will work less hours with my job, and a good bit of my hours will come from working at home. Hannah C. will come on board when I come back from maternity leave and will work with us through the duration of the school year. She will be a huge help to me with the teen girls! Hannah is graduating from our youth group this year and I can't wait to have her working with our youth staff in the fall. It was so neat to show our teens this video because they already know and love Hannah. It was a great way to reveal this "surprise announcement." Special thanks to Sam Evans for filming, directing, and editing our video.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Weekend Visit with Jeremy's Family

Jeremy's family came down this past weekend for a visit and to help us put some final touches on the nursery. Nola always takes good pictures, so these are all from her camera. With less than 20 days to go, I can't think of anything else to do in that nursery...except sit in the rocking chair and ponder. It's hard to believe that in less that three weeks (hopefully!) this room will be the home of our brand new baby boy!
Posing by Nolan's crib
Nolan's clothes 0-6 months - lots of blue, with hints of TN orange :)
Getting bigger and bigger and more and more ready!
Our nephew Jon Harper, riding horsey with his Papa John and laughing hysterically. They have a sweet relationship and we look forward to Nolan bonding with his grandparents.
Some other bonding that occured this weekend was between Jon Harper and Titan. Jon Harper loves to say, "dog" and he definitely said "Titan" way before uttering "Uncle Jeremy" or "Aunt Hannah." It was so fun to watch them play together!