charley, charlie

Back in July I mentioned we’re adopting from foster care. This entire time we’ve had a specific kid in mind who really stole our heart, and we’re proud to say we’re now officially moving forward with adopting him!


His name is Charlie. Kinda like how some of you spell our other son’s name – Charley.

He’s 14.

And he’s amazing!

Our good friend AJ Hurley is a master of all things film, and interviewed Charlie a while ago in a piece he put together for the Heart Gallery, a great organization in Tampa (well, nationwide) who photographs and videos children in foster care and lets the community know there are kids in our own neighborhoods needing families, love, and a home. Jesse Miller, who is pretty much a sister to us, runs the Heart Gallery here in Tampa and was the driving force behind making these videos happen. Another good friend of ours, Dan Weisberg, is the voice you hear. Ever since Robyn saw Charlie’s video, she knew we would be his parents.

You’ll have a chance to get to know Charlie more as we spend more time with him. We are excited and blessed to be able to take this step forward in our life and in his. We know it will be work – family always is! Already we know Charlie is much like us – a funny, smart, amazing person who has experienced  loss and tougher life events than many. We feel a kinship to him, and are looking forward to continuing that relationship.

We’ve started visits with Charlie, and the timeline until he moves in with us is not definite yet. We are really enjoying this time of getting to know him. Feel free to pray for us and him as our family continues to grow!


robyn’s birthday wish


Today’s my birthday, and I’ve got one wish. Ezra lived exactly 800 days, and January 16th will be 800 days since he died.

I wish for us to sell 800 Because of Ezra bracelets by January 16th. I’d like to see Ezra’s name all over this country. Of course, any money raised will go to Because of Ezra – into research into a cure. Plus – we have a cool announcement on the 16th as well.

We’ll keep a current count at the link below! Thanks, everyone – you people make me smile every day. – PLEASE SHARE!

pieces of Ezra


Although it is hard to see, the picture above is of a piece of our wall which Ezra drew all over with a pen. As a Christmas gift to me, Robyn had a friend of ours (thanks, Michael) remove it from the wall, build this frame and mount the piece in it, and replace the drywall where it was pulled from, freshly painted to match the rest of the wall. I had no idea any of this happened. She gave it to me last night, Christmas Eve, and it is probably the most beautiful gift I’ve ever received. I’m so grateful for Robyn.

There are pieces of Ezra all over our life. This square of drywall, with the most “unimportant” squiggles of misbehavior, makes me catch my breath every time I see it.

In our shower, there is a small ledge at the bottom when you step in. Ezra and I would take showers together, and he would line up all his plastic toys on that ledge – always facing away from him. Each time I’d turn them toward him, he’d turn them away again. Now, every time I take a shower, I think of Ezra lining up his toys on that ledge, facing away from him.

I check the mail and remember Ezra as he would walk around in front of our house, just like in the video below. Such a quiet, “unimportant” moment which I always come back to. A sunny afternoon with my son. Nothing to do but hang out. A piece of Ezra.

A few months ago, a man named David called me after finding Ezra’s story online. His beautiful wife, Lauren, had been diagnosed with neuroblastoma at 29 years old – very rare. Last night, as I was driving home, I saw David had posted she’d died.

On Christmas Eve.

I cried in my car. David – Robyn and I send our love to you. We are crushed to hear this. I am so sorry.

In Lauren and David’s story, there is a piece of Ezra.

Today, as you are surrounded by people you love, and maybe as you grieve ones who aren’t there, find some joy in these “unimportant” moments. They are the stuff our joy is made of. These simple moments are the building blocks we use to create a feeling of being loved, and of loving.

We did many big things with Ezra, and there were many important moments in our life with him. But when I think of our first-born son, I remember him in the back yard covered in leaves. I remember him bobbing his head around in Outback as a song he liked came on. I remember how he would dance, and laugh, and dance, every day he was able. I remember these small moments with such clarity, pain, and joy.

To live your life with someone you love is so significant.


Our prayer for you this Christmas season is for many of these “unimportant” moments. For living life with people you love. For smiles, even if they’re with sad eyes, as ours often are. The world is so tragically beautiful – and I am broken in it, and I am awed by it.

From Robyn, myself, and Charley – a Merry Christmas to you and yours.