Category Archives: Expecting

A Way In The Wilderness

kelli_ezra0034Just a few days before Valentines….two pink lines appeared before my eyes.

As one might expect….I would be over the moon, ecstatic. Shouting with joy at the top of my lungs. Dancing throughout our home….dreaming up all the creative ways we would share this news with our family and friends.

In fact, I was not like that at all. Yes, I was happy…..but my spirit felt suppressed. My joy was quenched. Fear immediately began to take residence and steal every bit of celebration in what was to be a super special moment, day, season…

When I found out that I was pregnant with Ezra….I honestly never thought I would/could lose the pregnancy. I saw the pink lines. It was set in stone. He was in there…..and I would see him in 9 months. End of story.

After having an early miscarriage in November 2014….my world was rocked. It was so unexpected. I was blindsided. And just like that… story included a miscarriage. Another loss.

In August 2015, I realized how much my wounded heart was affecting me. It was keeping me from living wholly. What was once the happy-go-lucky, all is well, everything will work out, glass is overflowing…..was now speaking nothing fruitful over her life and allowing fear to rule all thoughts and dreams. I began to believe that I should no longer expect goodness or blessings in life…and that any and all joy, happiness, gifts…..are all reserved for Heaven. Don’t expect much here, Kelli. Look at where it got you these past 5 years.

I found myself in Nashville just two weeks after I found out I was pregnant. Every trip to Nashville is always refreshing to my soul. I crave being there, especially when I feel like I need a little boost….as I know I will leave being filled up by friends that fully know and love me. Friends that speak LIFE. And its those conversations that I can’t wait to get around the table to hear and take part of.

My dear friends Cameron and Heather took me to dinner…and that night was a game changer for me. Through all the tears….my heart began to patch up a bit. Their words over my life, my future, this new life growing in my womb….was like healing balm to the deepest parts of my heart. Y’all to be loved in such a way….that people just freely speak over you….speaking things to our Heavenly Father on your behalf because you can’t even muster the words yourself. THAT is friendship. And that is love.

“Kelli, you have been in a long season of mourning…..and THIS IS YOUR SEASON OF JOY. RIGHT NOW!”

Those words still ring in my head, every single day. Its a truth that I continue to cling to. [Thank you, Cameron!]
kelli_ezra0012Something changed in me…..and I fight for it daily. I know and have always believed that God is good….no matter the valleys that I have walked though these past 5 years. He was always near. I was never alone. But this life is meant to be lived wildly…..shining brightly of His goodness. God delights in us. He wants good for us. He desires to bless us…..and not for us to be selfish with it, but to be a blessing to others. He loves us and He is a giver of good gifts….not just in Eternity, but here on earth. I am worthy of His love…. [including all the mysterious ways He chooses to shower us with love]
kelli_ezra0057This pregnancy was extremely emotionally for me during the first trimester. There were phone calls that I wanted to make, that I will never be able to make. I would sit in the parking lot after my doctors appointments and just cry out to Jesus……and ask for Him to comfort my heart and to fill the voids that I was feeling in that moment. Isn’t that how it should always be? I was taking a social media break during this time….so picking up my phone, getting that digital hit to distract and suppress my feelings by scrolling through other peoples stories was not an option….and I was forced to sit, to be ok with the silence and to reach out to the One who desperately desires to be our first call….and ask Him to draw me near. God not only wants to satisfy our hunger, but he desires that we hunger for more….more of Him and more of what He desires for us and from us.

So, the verse that has been my theme this year is this:

Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.” –Isaiah 43:18-19

➳ ➳ ▲▲▲▲▲▲▲▲▲▲▲▲▲▲▲▲▲▲▲▲▲▲▲▲➳ ➳

When my sweet friends, Jeremiah & Rachel dared to dream with me on a baby announcement shoot….they were in it heart and soul. Their ideas and visions were as if they had read the writing on my heart. They blessed me with their time, love and talent. We spent the afternoon together at our local nursery and they so wonderfully captured my sweet Ezra and I. Its rare for this mama to be in front of the camera….so these images are a treasure to me. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

If you’re still reading…..thank you. Thank you for your time…..and for listening to my thoughts in this season. Thank you for your prayers. For thinking of me when you do. And before I end this post….I want to encourage your heart… remind you that you are LOVED and WORTHY of His love.






I can NOT believe that this image was taken one year ago today! I remember wanting to document this day, which was July 3, 2012….since my due date was the 5th and the only plans I had for the 4th was a low key day. Our day was low key alright….until this very firecracker that I am holding….was lit and it exploded…..resulting in my water to break. Funny, huh?!

No, Ezra was not a 4th of July baby…..he wasn’t even born on the 5th! July 6th is his ONE YEAR birthday. This subject will be its own blog post…..

This momma is getting a little sentimental….

Ezra Reed

I can’t believe my baby is ONE MONTH old today. On July 6th at 9:32am….my sweet Ezra Reed Trontel was welcomed into our world. Weighing in at 8.9 pounds and 21 1/4 inches long. As I was approaching my final push….I remember thinking that I was just moments away from my son being placed on my chest. This is a scene that we have all seen….and it was about to happen to me! So surreal.

This story wouldn’t be complete without sharing that Reed and I had tried to start a family of our own for 3+ years. We weren’t being die hard about it, but it started to cross my mind that maybe we wouldn’t be able to have children of our own. Out of fear and every other wrong intention…I started to entertain the idea of adoption. I started to think this was my free ticket out of having to deal with greater fears such as childbirth. God obviously had other plans…..

When I first found out that I was pregnant I was gripped with fear. Fear of something being wrong with me. Fear of all the doctor visits. Fear of any and all needles and blood work. You name it….I was a afraid of it. When I thought about my labor and delivery….my plan was to be drugged up as soon as I walked through the hospital doors. I didn’t want to feel pain.

Well, God did a mighty work in me during my 9 months of pregnancy. I faced many of my fears and crushed fear beneath my feet at every doctor visit and prick from a needle. I experienced freedom like never before as I walked out this season out. Little did I know that this baby inside of me was being used by God to show me a side of Him that I was not experiencing. The biggest lesson learned was to TRUST. Did I really TRUST God? Did I really believe His promises….to never leave or forsake me?

My heart began to change in regards to my birth plan. I went from wanting to control the situation- to trusting my body to do what it was CREATED FOR. Whether this meant “all natural” or “non-medicated” or “epidural” or “c-section”….God was in control and all that I was being asked to do was to TRUST.

So, that was my plan. To trust God and the body He gave me….

My water broke on the 4th of July while we were at a friends house enjoying a BBQ and fantastic firework show! I’m all about a party…and I wasn’t quite ready to leave yet, but baby had other plans. It was about 11pm when I called the doctor and she said to come on in…..we arrived around midnight and it was confirmed that my water had broke and I was not going anywhere until baby made his arrival!

[4th of July: oh my! im HUGE!]

Long story short…I slept through the night and woke up the next morning- still no contractions. WHAT?!? So my nurse suggested we get up and at it and do whatever it takes to get this labor going. So, I ended up walking a total of 4+ miles around the hospital….yes, in my gown….along with doing jumping jacks and lunges. Still, no contractions. I was OK….I was not anxious or worrying about what to do next. I knew I was in good hands. My doctor would stop by through out the day to check in on me and around 5pm she made the executive decision that if I was not progressing into active labor around 11pm then I would need to start pitocin. When your water breaks you have between 24-36 hours to deliver your baby and my doctor is on the 36 hour side of things and she knew that we needed to do something, unless I was willing to risk needing a c-section.

11pm approached and I indeed needed pitocin to get this labor started! Man, that stuff works! It didn’t take long for my body to react and I finally started feeling contractions. If I were to do this all over again…I would order an epidural along with the pitocin, but we didn’t. However, after a few hours of Reed witnessing my pain he asked if I wanted an epidural. YES and THANK YOU! Unfortunately, the anesthesiologist was unable to see me for an hour….AWESOME! When he arrived- I was ready. At this point I was exhausted from the day that I didn’t even feel the needle go through my back! SERIOUSLY?!? Such a God thing- again, no pain and no fear. The epidural is what I always feared most, especially having limp legs….which I also didn’t ever notice!

It was around 6:30am when it became GO TIME! I was so blessed to have my amazing doctor, favorite nurse and husband by my side. I wouldn’t have had it any other way. Each person knew how incredibly important this day was- not only because my son was to be born, but I was facing a life long fear and they were there to help me through it. My doctor was AMAZING….and did everything in her power to deliver our baby as smooth and non-dramatic as possible. We were cutting close on time….and baby Ezra was a BIG BOY!!!

At 9:32am I heard my sons cry and he was placed on my chest. I immediately looked at Reed and at that very moment- I felt complete. This is what life is about.

The story behind Ezra’s name:: I was talking with my aunt Vicki early on in my pregnancy and was just sharing with her how the Lord had literally brought me through so much, while revealing new things about Him every day. I also shared that I felt the timing of our pregnancy was nothing short than perfect. Reed and I had tried on and off for about 3 years to conceive and in October 2011 it just happened…

We went on to talk about how 2010 was a year of ashes- of pain– of loss, while 2011 was about beauty, and this pregnancy was part of that process. With our baby due in 2012 I had claimed this year to be a year of LIFE! As I look back on these two years…it’s amazing to see how God not only takes, but gives! He is a God of redemption. He makes all things new….and we are experiencing that now!

Before our telephone conversation ended- my aunt said “Isn’t it amazing how God is using a baby- an unborn baby- to help you.”

As Reed and I were thinking and praying about names- we came across the name EZRA, which means “GODS HELP.” Right then and there….we knew. Ezra would be the name of our son.


[photo by Reed]

Dear Ezra,
You are the most beautiful blessing from God. You have changed your dads life, as well as mine…for the better and we can not imagine our life without you. You are only one month old, but have impacted our life in so many ways. To care for you…..I see glimpses of Gods love for me. As I hold you when you cry….I can’t help but think how our God responds to our tears. Oh I can only imagine the revelation that will come in the next days, weeks, years….I am so thankful to learn through you. You are most definitely Gods help….and I believe this on so many levels. Words can not describe my love for you…..

Love, momma.


Week 42

HELLO friends!

It’s been silent for two weeks on this blog of mine, but for good reason! Our son, Ezra Reed Trontel, was born on July 6th at 9:32am. He weighed in at a whopping 8.9 pounds and 21 1/4 inches long….and with a head full of hair!

In my last post I mentioned wondering if that week would be the finale to this series…and I was right! The very next night on the 4th of July [yes, at a dear friends house while the husbands were lighting up the sky with fireworks!] my water broke……and the journey began. More on this later….

This Weekly Photo Maternity Series was such a fun project and I do plan on printing a book and keeping it for Ezra to flip through one day. This project was for Ezra all along- I mean, how awesome would it be to see your mom document you in her growing belly in a creative way that was her own personality? I would have loved that! Reed and I have already looked through the entire series and now that he is here- it gives us such a different perspective. Check it out here.

Well, I wanted to officially end this Weekly Photo Maternity Series the only way I know how…..and I love this so much more than all the fruits and veggies!

I have to give a HUGE thank you to my sweet husband- Reed who took the majority of the photos for this series. He does not consider himself a photographer and this really was a commitment every single week. Reed, thank you for jumping on board this project and believing in my vision. You are the best. I love you!

Thank you….the readers….for all the encouragement as I documented this sweet season in life.
The End.


photos by: Amy Conner

OUTFIT DETAILS:: top: Harlow | jeans: AG | jewelry: Jcrew


week 39

It seriously feels like yesterday when I first downloaded the BABY CENTER app on my phone. I was 6 weeks pregnant. I was nervous. No one knew we were expecting except God and I……until I shared the news with Reed, of course!  It was an exciting and intense moment all wrapped into one.

I count it a blessing to have carried this boy of ours full term. What a beautiful experience this pregnancy has been and I can’t thank the Lord enough for being exactly what I’ve needed in this season. My God is faithful. My God is good. SO good!

As I took this photo this week, I couldn’t help but wonder if this would be the last photo that I take for this series. Or….will there be next week? It’s a waiting game, but I’m using this time to guard my heart and fill my mind with TRUTH.

To be honest, fear does try to creep in….but as I have already experienced….God has a GREATER PLAN for me. All that I was fearful of at the very beginning was for nothing….none of what I feared has come to pass. I’ve already had my shout fest with the enemy….crushing every lie that I believed for years…..crushing the hook he had on me for years….it’s over. So thankful that the Lord has used my baby boy to teach me very real lessons in life already! There’s more to this….and I’ll share later.

Well, according to my app our baby is waiting to greet the world! He might measure to be a bit over 7 pounds [my doctor is guessing more like 8!]….like half of a watermelon!

I can’t believe I’m at the WATERMELON stage!!!! Yikes!

Have a wonderful and safe 4th of July, my friends! I had to take this photo at the local fireworks stand….you know, he could be a firecracker baby afterall ?!?! We’ll see…..


photos by: Reed

OUTFIT DETAILS:: tank top: MOMMA by H&M | cardigan: JCrew | scarf: Red Velvet by Elsie Larson