little ones

Nothing could be sweeter than adding these tiny princesses to our household for a few days


the giggles, the questions, the echo as Eden repeats everyone’s words

the breathy excitement as they snuggled in bed, “tomorrow! our baby brother will be born tomorrow.”


Disinterested in the slumber party, Eden chose instead to cling to Erik even as he brushed his teeth. It was later, much much later when she fell asleep in my arms– a delicious sort of satisfaction that nothing can rival.

I’m not one who is glad to be done with diapers, bottles, binkies, cribs and strollers. Every aspect of babyhood is delicious to me– even the messy and sleep-deprived parts. As I write this, Eden is again sleeping in my arms, a perfect little cherub.

I love bathing little people– measuring the water with my hand until the temperature is just right, filling the tub with toys and bubbles, carefully washing their curls and wrapping their little bodies in fresh white towels.

And I could admire Elle admiring herself all day long.

four princesses ready for breakfast

and brothers ready to heed their every command

Of course, caring for little ones is simple when I’ve planned nothing else for the day, have no where to go, and can leave the cleaning for tomorrow. I’m in awe of my friend Kit and so many mothers like her who nurture these little ones while making dinner and preparing a lesson for Joy School.

I’m afraid I became a little too smug about the ease of adding to our household when I jumped into the shower at about 11:30 a.m. Just as my toes touched the water I heard a scream that couldn’t be ignored. Towel clad, I ran to where Elle was napping and found her vomiting all over her face and hair and–wail!- her princess dress. Stefan helped me carry her to the tub where we sprayed crying little Elle down and washed her hair three times. Wrapping myself in a robe and sweet Elle in two towels, I settled into my toile loveseat.

Kissing her hair and holding her close, I rocked her until sobs turned to giggles and her black fringed eyes sparkled with mischief– “Does this mean I get popsicles?”

In a heartbeat, Stefan drove to the store. And we ate popsicles. And slept.


p.s. rumor has it that baby Darren (born moments ago) looks much like Elle– that’s one beautiful boy.

February 20, 2011



  1. cristie

    February 21, 2011

    precious photos.


  2. Tracy

    February 22, 2011

    A BOY!!!!!! Oh I am so happy for Kit and Kevin…after everything. Oh my such blessings. And for you – look at this sweet bunch you get to dote on for a few days. What a blessing again. That pic of erik with eden..made me sob. So sweet.

    Much love.

  3. Tifani

    February 22, 2011

    How appropriate that this post follows your own beautiful words about true friends. You are truly a friend to all, Michelle!

  4. Kristin

    February 22, 2011

    They’re beautiful girls and lucky to be with you at this time.

    Reminds me of the day my own son was born…and his three older sisters were 6, 4, and 17 months old.

    And then 18 months later we added another daughter.

    A boy certainly changes things up!! I am excited for this family to embark on a new adventure.

  5. Cath

    February 22, 2011

    This post is making me cry! Maybe because I’m in the thick of all these things and I long to capture it like this. The lips spread apart during sleep, the wet hair and wet bodies wrapped in towels, the ever-present binkie. But the usual rush of it here makes “capturing” a challenge. I wish I had your eye and your camera in our home for a day. You’ve been busy. Those are sweet girls. Glad baby brother arrived safely.

  6. Lisa

    February 22, 2011

    Beautiful, wonderful, loved everything about this…the photos, the girls, popsicles, Erik, a baby brother..he will be the most adored baby brother in the world!

    Most especially loved those gorgeous girls post-tub in the white towels.

  7. Kevin Linkous

    February 22, 2011

    Michelle thank you so much and to all of you amazing Lehnardts! We waited so long for those precious angels and it’s always hard to leave them even with grandmas and grandpas but what a blessing to have friends that are our adopted family that we can leave them and know without a doubt that they are soooo loved and adored!
    In fact last night Elle woke up and asked if she could go back to Eriks house! Thanks for cleaning them, feeding them and allowing them to enveloped in the magic that is your family! They love you and we love you! I cried reading this post!
    It is special to see how you capture them in your photos but what I loved most was picturing Eden sleeping in your arms and seeing her cling to Erik, so precious!
    That must be what Heavenly Father feels like when he sends his children to be with us and he knows they are being loved and adored! Thanks again!

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