Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas!

"For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given; and the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace." Isaiah 9:6

Monday, December 13, 2010

Are we adopting again?!

By Charlie Beal

My Life is Not My Own
Go ahead and say it with me, “My life is not my own.” It sounds pretty powerful, doesn’t it? For me, saying these words is exhilarating. It gives me visions of being the selfless person I’ve always wanted to be…a life-changer, and somewhat of a hero. It makes my chest puff out, my muscles feel a little bigger, and my self-esteem sky rocket. But in truth, when I stop and really think about what these words mean, my selfish side takes over. The initial joy and motivation the words bring is almost instantly gone when I think of reality of what my life would be if I truly lived by those words. Visions of me never getting time to go on a date with my wife, never getting time to myself, or never getting to take a guys golf trip, are all that fill my mind. The new truck I want, the Hawaiian vacation, the country club membership…all gone.

If you have kids, you probably understand that really, your life is already not fully your own. From the moment you wake up to the time you go to bed, you basically exist to meet their needs and keep them safe. Whether you go to work to make money to support them or make meals, bath them, and comfort them, your every day goal is to take care of them first and yourself second.

Why is this subject even on my mind these days? Well, I’ll try to give you the short version. As you may know, we adopted our sweet boy, Jeremiah, from Ethiopia in March of this year. The night before we left for Ethiopia, I had a dream we would meet our next child on our trip. In the dream, I was hanging out and playing soccer with a boy at an orphanage. At the end of our time together, I told the boy, “If you’re here a year from now, I’ll come back for you.” It was a very vivid dream, but was quickly forgotten when we arrived in Ethiopia because of the hectic first few days we had there. The first day we met our son, the second we actually got to take him with us, the third we went shopping, and the fourth day we visited a few orphanages.

At the second orphanage we visited that day, we blew up balloons and played with many kids. After a few minutes of playing, a 5 year-old boy walked up to me, said something in Amharic, grabbed my hand and led me into the orphanage. Inside, he very proudly showed me his bed and took me back to the classroom where he pointed to English letters and pronounced them as best he could. After getting through about half the alphabet, he grabbed my hand again and led me outside, where he quickly pulled out a soccer ball and kicked it toward me. Like a ton of bricks, memories of my dream hit me at full force. While continuing to kick the ball back and forth and acting like a fool to keep him laughing, all I could think was, “Is this our next child? Is God really doing what I think He’s doing right now?” After a few more minutes of me flopping around like a rag-doll and letting him score goals on me, he suddenly stopped, staring at me intently, and let out a loud karate, “Waaaaa” while striking a Bruce Lee-stance. (Funny, as our 5 year-old daughter was in the “karate” stage.) I thought, “He’s happy, he’s goofy…sounds like a Beal to me.”

A few days later, we saw the boy at the Transitional Home after his doctor check-up and I was fortunate enough to get to play with him a little more before we headed back to the hotel. Before leaving, however, we let a representative from our agency know that, “if he is still on the Waiting Child list in six-months, we would like more information on him.” Long-story-short, he is still on the list and (SURPRISE!!!) he has an older brother…and (SURPRISE-PART DEUX) they both have medical conditions.

After finding out about the brother and the medical conditions, I thought, “We probably don’t have the money to support two more kids, let alone kids with medical conditions.” Plus, I’ve always heard you shouldn’t adopt a child older than your current oldest child. Apparently, it can screw up the dynamic of the “birth order.” With all those reasons, I quickly dismissed the idea of adopting these boys, while Becca continued to bring them up to me. I felt bad, but I’m the man in the relationship. I’m supposed to be the logical one and not do things which could “harm” our family’s future (ie…put us into debt, etc…). Well, after a few months now, Becca hasn’t stop bringing them up to me and to top it off, one night Emmy prayed, “And God if you want these boys in our family, we’ll say yes.” (Picture my jaw hitting the floor and tear-ducts going into full production.) The innocent faith of a 5 year-old can really put things into perspective for a logical-thinking grown-up. Becca and I just looked at each other and agreed we should look into it further.

So here we are, trying to imagine life with 4 kids, a mortgage payment, a school loan payment (which acts like a mortgage payment), day-to-day expenses, all while hearing in the back of our hearts and minds, “My life is not my own.” Those words never ring so true than when I imagine if something happened to Becca and I, and our children were left with no one to love them, care for them, read to them, or hold them. I would want someone to take them in, no matter the cost or hardship their new parents may face. When I think of our children alone, the conviction can’t be any greater. My life is not my own.

Imagine if Jesus decided on the cross, “Nope. I really would like to help you guys out, but this whole thing is putting a lot of stress on me. I mean, let’s be honest, you’re asking a lot of me.” Fortunately, He stayed the course and showed, in the truest sense of the words, “My life is not my own.” So, why shouldn’t we?

Please pray with us as we lay our future in front of God…pray for our hearts and minds…for wisdom and peace with whatever God holds for us. Most importantly, please pray for these two boys…that God would provide a loving family for both of them, whether it’s us or some other family. We serve a mighty God who knows our hearts, knows what we can handle, and knows how to provide in all things.

I’ll close with this…Jesus has prepared an amazing banquet for all who come to Him and there is ALWAYS room for more at His table. Last time I counted (and here’s when I faint), there are 8 chairs at the Beal dining room table. Please pray.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

One year ago today...

One year ago today I was working in Emmy's class

One year ago today I didn't have my cell phone with me which was and is a normal occurence

One year ago today I didn't expect to get a call about you

One year ago today I thought we'd have to wait at least another month to hear your name, see your picture, and learn everything about you

One year ago today Daddy was FREAKING out because he got "the call" and couldn't get a hold of me for about 2 hrs.

One year ago today I was helping a classroom full of preschoolers glue, cut, write, color, share, and get a snack.

One year ago today Daddy was mad at me for not having my phone attached to my body. See we had made a deal neither of us could look at your picture without the other.

One year ago today when Daddy called and told me we got "the call" I didn't believe him.

One year ago today I started crying when I realized it was true.

One year ago today I drove too fast to get home so I could see you for the first time.

One year ago today my hands were shaking as I opened the file with your picture.

One year ago today we saw your beautiful face.

One year ago today we fell in love with you.

One year ago today we prayed for you with your beautiful face in our minds and heart.

One year ago today I felt so happy that I finally got to see you!

We love you Jeremiah Eyob...

First picture we saw of you!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Orphan Sunday

"Not flesh of my flesh nor bone of my bone, But still miraculously my own, never forget for a single moment, you didn't grow under my heart but in it...."

We put this quote on our announcements for Jeremiah's arrival. I love it. It describes perfectly the way we feel about Miah. I can honestly say after almost 8 months with him that he is my child. He is my own. Some people will say "...and Emmy is your own?" after saying we adopted Jeremiah. I know adoptive parents can get offended easily and really it's just because their/our hearts are sensitive to this subject at times. I don't get offended because they are using improper "adoption" lingo...I know they mean no harm. They are not aware of how those words can hurt a child. I truly have prayed I wouldn't be so sensitive to those comments because I don't want Jeremiah to become sensitive to them. However I also know I have to correct them in a non defensive way for Jeremiah. I never want him to feel he isn't mine. I never want him to feel like Emmy is my own and Jeremiah is my adopted son. No...they are both my own but came about differently. He IS my son.

I just find myself looking at him wondering how in the world he is he came from Ethiopia...and how it just feels so natural and right that he is my son!! It's all so miraculous and amazing!

God is so good. God has adopted us into His family. When Adam and Eve sinned They alienated themselves from God. They became spirital orphans. The only solution was to restore them (and us too!) back to God. Well no longer are we orphans. We turned from Him yes, then crucified His son yes, but this was His plan to bring us back to relationshiop with Him. He paid a price, a big price....His son dying in our place that we might have a home with our Father again. We have all the rights, inheritance and blessings. We are no longer Orphans...we are loved and we are cherished and we are HOME with Christ Jesus our Lord and SAVIOR! All we have to do is believe...

If you haven't prayed for these children please do today. These 147 million children around the world that have no family. I can't imagine. Pray about how God wants us to help...How God is calling you to help. It could be as simple as sponsoring a child or being a big brother or sister for these types of programs. Or it could be opening your heart and home to a child.

This is a great website to find out more!

Psalms 10:14 But you, O God, do see trouble and grief;
you consider it to take it in hand. The victim commits himself
to you; you are the helper of the fatherless.

Psalms 68:5 A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows,
is God in his holy dwelling.

Isaiah 1:17 learn to do right! Seek justice, encourage the
oppressed. Defend the cause of the fatherless, plead the case
of the widow.

Psalm 82:3 Defend the weak and the fatherless; uphold the cause
of the poor and the oppressed.

James 1:27 Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and
faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their
distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.


Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Adoption is much more than...

Go to this blog and read this is exactly how I feel but could not explain it any better. Adoption is much more than doing "good", being like the stars, following a popular trend. It is a God given desire...with ALOT of prayer by the birth mom and adoptive mom God works miracles.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Adoption Journey at

Our journey to Jeremiah...we had him 6 months as of yesterday!! We love you son! :D

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Oh the joys...

My blog was just published on Adoption Experiences website. Their link is on the right of this page. It will be neat to have more people read the blog and hopefully be encouraged in their own walk with adoption.

So one of the things we got to experience when adopting Jeremiah was giardia. A parasite. It's taken a couple treatments and a couple months for us to finally EVICT this stinkin' bug. And by the way, it IS stinky!! Whew!

Although we rid ourselves of the "stink bug" we are now dealing with some effects of a possible dairy allergy. This is hard because Jeremiah LOVES dairy. Milk isn't his favorite but cheese, cottage cheese, yogurt. This is going to be tough. We'll get through it and hopefully his tummy will feel better after we figure out what is wrong. He sure doesn't like most of the foods I am giving him. :/

Other than that we are just enjoying our last days of summer. It's been beautiful here other than a few summer thunder storms. Hope you all enjoy your last days of summer as well!! :D

Below are a few pictures I took recently...I love my kids. :)

Sunday, August 8, 2010


I've got a fever. It's called baby fever...and I have it BAD!

I know what you are thinking "she is crazy! She just got a baby 5 months ago!" Well you are right...I am crazy!

I have hard days, good days, sleepy days. But all these days are so fun and filled with so much joy! I would love to have a full house. I just love hearing Emmy in Miah's room in the morning. They laugh, yell, and just giggle till I can't stand it and have to join the fun. It is so sweet...I am getting ready to add another. Whether another bio or through adoption we'll be praying about it and let God figure that out. ;)

Daddy however isn't ready...he is enjoying Miah and Emmy too but thinking more level headed than me. Tends to be what men do, right?

I am also itching to start an orphan ministry at our church. I am really praying about this. This would be a big step and I want it to be ALL God. I don't want to try and make this happen. I want God to make it happen so it will grow, flourish and impact people to love orphans. I am just really ready to advocate in a big way for orphans. However God wants to use me. So I am praying and waiting on Him in this too.

So we wait...we pray...and we wait some more. Sound familar?? Story of our lives, right?! Waiting, trusting, praying, and waiting some more. Although it can be difficult to wait, waiting always leads to something beautiful...

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Emmy's 5th Birthday

Can't believe Emmy is 5 years old now...July 7th was the beautiful day our sweet girl turned 5. Charlie and I were just looking at pictures of Emmy at 2 1/2 years old and were just in awe. How does it go that fast? Really how does time go so slow at times and yet at other times it goes so unbelievably fast?

I remember being pregnant and friends, family, strangers would all tell me to take each day in, and really appreciate every moment with Emmy. I can honestly say I did. I really feel I appreciated and loved every moment with Emmy. I didn't have a hard pregnancy, and I adjusted pretty well to becoming a Mom. Some have a really hard time with their first...I however had a great time and wasn't stressed. I really enjoyed her. I still do!

Everyone knows I want to adopt again but I hope to again enjoy the miracle of birth too! It's a beautiful gift. I feel very blessed having been apart of both giving birth and adopting. Not everyone gets to experience both.

Emmy is a beautiful gift. She is a wonderful big sister, has so much love to give, is sweet, strong, caring, smart, silly, and loves to share JESUS with anyone!
Love you baby girl!

Monday, July 26, 2010

It's time for changes...

I know it's not January 1st where most people start their New Year's Resolution, but for me today I am going to start changing some things. First I decided to change my blogs template. It needed a change. It needed to freshen up a bit... :)

This is how I am feeling in a lot of areas right now. Having two kids is much harder than I thought it would be. Those of you with three, four or more are probably laughing about now. Don't get me wrong, I am one of those people that wants to have a house full of kids but for some reason adding Jeremiah has been hard. Perhaps all the transitions have made it much harder. Let's see we moved to Oregon (first big move EVER for both of us), we added to our family through adoption, bought a house and moved yet again all in 8 months. Hmmm...Just writing that out makes me realize even more how crazy our life has been!! :D

So it's time to stop whining,

time to pick up my boots and get movin'. Enough lazy mornings, no more excuses, I have to get organized and start making each day count. Alright maybe I will allow one or two lazy mornings. ;)

I want to be used by the Lord...I want to see my days have purpose and although I know there is purpose in laundry, cleaning, meals, and wiping poopy bottoms
I want to know I accomplished more than that. I want to know I helped a stranger, encouraged a friend, and had time with my Savior each day.

So today I am eager to be used by God...I know I can't do it all

and I WILL fail in my attempt at becoming the World's Best Mom, Friend, Wife, Sister, Daughter, Servant, and well...Human! :)
However I know that if I choose to give Jesus my days I will be used by Him.

John 15:5;13-17
"I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends. You are my friends if you do what I command. I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master's business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you. You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit—fruit that will last. Then the Father will give you whatever you ask in my name. This is my command: Love each other."

I do so love taking care of my family...that is my biggest job and I love it! :D
Fourth of July pictures below...

Friday, July 2, 2010

Jeremiah can say...

Tries to say Emmy, but comes out "Mammy, mamma, emma." Always different. ;D
Nana (Banana is his fav food!)
Ball (sort of bah)
Bye Bye (Bah Bah)
Nigh Nigh (Night Night...his blankie is Nigh Nigh also)
Mo (More)
Baby (Bebe)

Jeremiah is such a funny little boy. He sighs when we sigh, He kisses on demand (Yum!), He has caught onto the game "I'm gonna getcha...I'm gonna getcha." and he crawls as fast as he can giggling. It's the best. :)

He screams ALL the time...Happy, sad, doesn't matter. He just likes screaming. He throws toys all the time too. That is real fun in the supermarket. He poops all the time too! Ewww...stinky.

Jeremiah is pulling himself up on everything now. He is getting really strong. He is doing new tricks all the time...climbing up stairs, opening cabinets and emptying them too, and basically getting into everything.

He is a typical 14 month old and I love it. The screaming I could do without though!! :D I love him so much and I see my love growing more and more everyday. We are so blessed to see all these "firsts".

Friday, May 28, 2010

Does anyone read this blog anymore?!

I am sure not too many people do since I am seriously failing to keep this blog up and running. It's been a big transition going from one to two. I am hoping it's my hardest transition!! :D

Tonight I felt like I needed to write. I wanted to tell everyone about Jeremiah. I want to say how much we've grown as a family. We loved Jeremiah before we got him. I can say I truly did. When I first saw him it was LOVE AT FIRST SIGHT!! I couldn't believe we had him in our was pure joy. When we got home it got hard though. I can't explain adoption depression? Jetlag? Transition from a fairly independent 4 year old to a 10 month old baby requiring constant attention? Trying to figure out said 10 month old baby...why does he throw up all his food? Blow outs, crying, clingy, trying to do everything the "right" way for an adopted child, give Emmy attention, feel guilty for Emmy not getting attention, feel guilty letting Jeremiah cry for 10 seconds, etc. It was a rough few weeks.

We have really gotten in a groove now though. I don't believe in jinks' so I won't knock on wood. :D I know we'll still have our moments (with two you have those moments) but really I feel like our family has grown close in the past few weeks. I can say how much more my love has grown for Jeremiah. Although adopting is so different than having a biological child in so many ways it is also the same. I loved Emmy so much more at 6 months than I did at 3 months. Again much more at 3 years than at one year. My love for her just continued to grow...I can already tell it's the same with Jeremiah. We as parents love our children the more we get to know them...the more we pray for them...the more we allow God to work in us and through us to these little ones He put in our lives and hearts.

I was thinking about this because of how much my love has grown for Jeremiah. Everyday I learn more about our little boy and think about the life he had before us. The trials he endured at such a young age...and the trials he will endure later too. Rocking him to sleep tonight I was so caught off guard by my emotions...thinking he had never been rocked to sleep the way I rock him...that he probably never had someone sing to him the way I sing to him...that he didn't have someone love him the way I love him. It broke my heart thinking my son missed out on this. Then it broke my heart even more knowing so many are missing out on these moments.

Oh Lord, arise, defend the fatherless. Let them feel your lovingkindness!!

We know God calls us to love and care for orphans. God calls each of us to that in different ways. If we feel the Lord nudging us toward adoption and we are scared that is normal. In fact I don't know one person who hasn't been scared to adopt. We just need to trust that if God is leading us to adoption to then follow Him and trust. We love the children He has entrusted to us...We love them because love is a action...not a feeling. The feelings come after obedience. Pray and when you know God is saying "yes...I have a child for you through adoption." Pray some more...and trust. He has an amazing blessing for you...He wants to grow you...stretch you...bless you! We are blessed, and in love with our boy. :D

Monday, May 10, 2010

1st Birthday and Mother's Day

We celebrated Jeremiah's 1st birthday May 7th. We choose May 7th with the help of our physician. Jeremiah was most likely born before this day...we just can't know for sure. It really doesn't matter though because God knows.

It may be hard for him later in life to know he doesn't know his actual birthday. I know the date and time Emmy was born. I know all the details...I am sad I don't know these things for Jeremiah. So I was thinking about all of this Sunday and I realized how special it is that he has a secret with God. No one on earth knows the day or the time Jeremiah was born except his birth mom or dad whom we will never know until we pass through this life onto the next. But God knows...That is Jeremiah's little secret with God. Although it will be hard for him I want him to know how special it is that He and God have a secret together. A secret that Jeremiah will know one day...

Two days later I celebrated Mother's Day. My first Mother's Day as a mom to TWO children. A dream of mine that has come true. I always wanted alot of kids and never knew how they would all come to be...slowly I am finding out. I just couldn't help but think of Jeremiah's birthmom. I am sure every Birthday, Mother's Day, Graduation Days, etc. I will think of her and pray for her. My prayer is always that she will come to know the Lord if she doesn't already. I also always pray for comfort, and peace for her to know Jeremiah is safe and with a family who loves him as their own. Thank you for giving him LIFE.

We are praying about adopting again. This time an older child. A child who most likely would not be "chosen" because they have extra "baggage". Although my heart is already on board I am also mentally preparing/praying about this because I know how selfish I am!! :D I know it would be a challenge in so many ways...I know I would be blessed to be apart of it all...but that selfishness just resides in me. I am praying alot about this.

Biological or adopted; we are just excited to see our family unfold. We are so blessed to have Jeremiah and Emmy. To have more would just let our cup overflow!!

We love you Emmy and Jeremiah!

Saturday, May 1, 2010

A new normal...

It's so fun watching these two interact. I love it!! I was finishing dinner and Emmy was pretending to be a Teranadon (sp) dinosaur from a show she likes watching and I noticed Jeremiah was copying her laughing, and smiling. I had to catch it on film. But of course when the camera comes out they don't "perform" as they were, but he still did some of what he was doing. I love our new normal. Enjoy...

Thursday, April 29, 2010


I will be alone for 7 days with two sick kids...not to mention I am starting to feel sick. I am popping pills like crazy hoping/praying I will not get sick. Charlie has a tradeshow for work. We hate it when he is gone!! We will miss you daddy!

We had Jeremiah's first birthday on Sunday. What a blessed day it was. We choose May 7th to be his birthday. With some help from our Doctor this is the day we will celebrate his life. But the biggest day we will celebrate is the day he was in our arms forever. His gotcha day March 16th 2010! This day we will PARTAY! :D

Enjoy pics from his birthday party and some random pictures I thought you'd enjoy.

Friday, April 16, 2010

One month...

One month "gotcha" day. One month ago today we "gotcha" FOREVER! :D

We are having a blast with our little man. He is crawling on hands and knees now. His leg strength is much better. He refers to us now as mama and dada! :D
He is eating amazingly and in two weeks he gained a pound and a half. He is really teething now...maybe he'll have teeth for his first birthday!?

He is really bonded to us and loves Emmy. She can sometimes bug him but what big sister doesn't?! (hehehe)

We are just so blessed to have him in our lives. We love you little man!!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

One month ago today...

One month ago today I held you for the first time...
One month ago today my dream was fulfilled...
One month ago today we saw the face up close we'd seen in a dozen pictures...
One month ago today I got to whisper I am your mommy and I love you...
one month ago today I became a mommy to two children...
One month ago today I kissed your lips (FINALLY!)...
One month ago today I couldn't believe it was all coming true...

It seems like you've been with us much is all so natural and we are so blessed to be your family. Thank you Jesus for this precious gift. Tomorrow is our one month "gotcha day". The day we "gotcha" forever!! :D

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

We started praying for our next child months ago...Through those months God has led us to pray for an older child. Our hearts are wide open. We'll see what God does. :D

This poem was on a friends blog. I needed to post it. It speaks volumes to us.

The Waiting Child
by Debbie Bodie

I saw you meet your child today
You kissed your baby joyfully
And as you walked away with her
I played pretend you'd chosen me.

I'm happy for the baby, yet
Inside I'm aching miserably
I want to plead as you go by,
"Does no-one want a child of three?"

I saw you meet your child today
In love with her before you met
And as I watched you take her out
I knew it wasn't my turn yet.

I recognize you from last year!
I knew I'd seen your face before!
But you came for a second babe.
Does no-one want a child of four?

I saw you meet your child today
But this time there was something new
A nurse came in and took MY hand
And then she gave my hand to you.

Can this be true? I'm almost six!
And there are infants here you see?
But then you kissed me and I knew
The child you chose this time was me.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Couldn't help but copy this from another's speaks volumes for what today says for us believers.

How deep the Father's love for us,
How vast beyond all measure
That He should give His only Son
To make a wretch His treasure.

How great the pain of searing loss,
The Father turns His face away
As wounds which mar the chosen One,
Bring many sons to glory.

Behold the Man upon a cross,
My sin upon His shoulders
Ashamed I hear my mocking voice,
Call out among the scoffers.

It was my sin that held Him there
Until it was accomplished
His dying breath has brought me life
I know that it is finished.

I will not boast in anything
No gifts, no power, no wisdom
But I will boast in Jesus Christ
His death and resurrection.

Why should I gain from His reward?
I cannot give an answer
But this I know with all my heart
His wounds have paid my ransom.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Two weeks...

We've had our boy for two weeks now!! It seems like he has been with us forever. It doesn't seem like that short of a time because he has adjusted so well and has been bonding amazingly.

In two weeks these are some things we've figured out about Jeremiah. Some things that have changed too.

1. He holds our fingers, hands while we give him a bottle now
2. Makes eye contact now while drinking a bottle
3. Can hold his weight on his legs now when he couldn't before
4. Takes a pacifer (makes naps much easier!)
5. Eats a variety of foods now and ALOT of it!
6. Talks a lot now and babbles all the time
7. Is less clingy than when we first got home
8. Has a parasite! Ugh.
9. Has shown us his *nasty* side...when he gets mad watch out!! Throws his head back and kicks his legs like he is a toddler throwing a temper tantrum!! :D
10. Sleeps through the night
11. Dropped two feedings
12. Makes us laugh REALLY hard...Especially Emmy. She thinks he is SO funny.
13. Had his first doctor appt. and the Doctor thinks he is about 10 months. He is in the 5th percentile for weight. Feeding him lots of GOOD fatty foods. :D
14. Makes everyone smile

We love you baby boy and are so blessed to be your family!! :D

Friday, March 26, 2010

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Ethiopia in a few pictures...

The pics are backwards so start from the bottom to see the first time we met our little guy!