Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Snow, Snow, Snow!

The family loaded up the cars and headed toward the mountains on Saturday. Unfortunately so did half of California. They closed the road and didn't allow anyone else up the mountain because there were just way too many people. It was a bummer to say the least. But, we loaded up the cars again on Tuesday and headed back up the mountain, hoping there would be less traffic. There were still a good number of people, but not enough to stop us from getting to the snow. We enjoyed a few hours of playing in the snow, throwing snowballs, and even sledding. It was a beautiful day and the scenery was spectacular.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Merry Christmas!

Jewelly and I had a wonderful Christmas here is So Cal. We woke up early and gathered in the living room. Morgan led the family in a time of Worship and Jewelly read about the birth of Christ in the book of Luke. That was a good way to start the day. Then we opened up some Christmas gifts. After getting cleaned up we headed out for breakfast at the home of Jewelly's Grandfather and Grandmother. A few hours later we headed to the house of her grandparents on her mother's side for dinner. The food was terrific all day. We had a wonderful day! We did miss my family in Michigan though. We love you guys and can't wait to see you again!

For Christmas I bought Jewelly a really nice camera. She was excited to get it. I was very excited about playing with it also. We have had a lot of fun getting acquainted with it these past few days. The pictures below are some of the first shots taken with it.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

A New Hart

Jewelly and I had our first visit to the Doctor's office yesterday. We already new it, but it was confirmed that we should have a new Hart entering the world some time in the first week of August 2009. They did the first Ultrasound and determined that Jewelly is at seven weeks. Although the ultrasound only shows what looks like a little peanut at this point, I almost cried when I saw the heart beating strong. God is so good. His ways are amazing. "For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made." Psalm 139:13-14a.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!

Wow! Can it really be Thanksgiving tomorrow!?! Is Christmas really less than a month away!?! Up until this week it has felt like summer in Southern California, but this week the weather has turned and we have had some nice cool whether...even some rain!!!

We have much to be thankful for this year. We are thankful for a house filled with love and laughter. A nation where we can worship the Lord freely (for now). Jobs that allow us to pay our bills and save for the future. Family and friends to love and build memories with. Our sweet little dog Macchiato. Our marriage, which gives us the opportunity to serve someone other than ourselves. Hopes and dreams for the future. The gift of salvation through the Lord Jesus Christ. The list could go on and on...

As I write this Brian is out running errands for me as I rest on the couch battling a head cold. I never get sick, but for some reason this cold has really gotten a hold on me. I'm so thankful to have a wonderful husband who willingly runs to the store to get me Johnson & Johnson Vapor Bath, Vick's Vapor Rub, and a Cold Buster smoothie from Jamba Juice. Thank you honey! You take such great care of me!

While you celebrate the holiday, Thanksgiving, tomorrow be sure to take time to truly give thanks. It is so easy to let days like Thanksgiving pass us by without thinking about the purpose of the day. While you enjoy the delicious food and company you are surrounded with tomorrow remember to go before the Lord with a thankful heart.

We are thankful for each of you dear friends! Grace and peace to you!

Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his love endures forever. - I Chronicles 16:34

Monday, November 17, 2008


Would you let me share my heart with you just for a minute?

Over the past few years the Lord has worked in my heart to build a passion for adoption. I'm not sure when it started, maybe when my family began the journey of adopting Natasha, my sister from Belarus, or perhaps it was before that. For quite some time now I have known that some day I desire to be the mommy of adopted children. I want biological children too, definitely, but I love the extra blessing of giving your heart to children who might not otherwise have a chance. I recently heard someone say, with a biological child you get to have a child, with an adopted child you get to help a child. In both cases children are a gift from the Lord entrusted to us for a time of shaping and molding and raising to the glory of God.

I distinctly remember a conversation Brian and I had before we were married where we were discussing our hopes and dreams for our family. Through that conversation I learned that Brian shares my desire to build a family through adoption. He shared his experience with a small Jamaican girl on a missions trip that stoked the fire in him to adopt someday.

In our conversations over the past couple years our thought has always been to have children biologically first, then adopt down the road. This may be the path we take, but in recent weeks and months I have become more and more aware of the pressing need and wonder if perhaps our adoption dreams might be fulfilled sooner rather than later. There are millions of children in need of forever families. The percentages of those who consider adoption versus those who actually adopt are heartbreaking.

One of the biggest hurdles for many is the cost of adoption. Though this is steep and will certainly be a challenge for Brian and me, I know the Lord is faithful and He will provide. Would you join us in praying for the children in need of forever families? Would you ask the Lord to raise up the church to take a stand for these precious ones? Would you pray for me and Brian that we would follow the Lord's leading to adopt in His perfect timing?

There are many resources for those of you who would like to find out more about these staggering needs and how you can get involved. Here are a few resources to check out:

Monday, November 10, 2008

Happy Birthday Brian!


Today is Brian's 33rd birthday! He shared with me the other day that he will be a third of a century old sometime early next year (I can't remember the exact date, but he knew it!). Wow! I am blessed to be married to a man who has learned much in the time the Lord has allowed him to be a blessing here on earth.

To Tom and Judy - Judy, thank you for allowing the Lord to use you to carry Brian and give him life. Thank you for nurturing him and loving him through his childhood and teen years. Thank you for not shaking him to death even when you wanted to (and thank you Tom for intervening!...Brian told me a story about this once :-) Thank you both for teaching Brian about the Lord from a young age. Thank you for giving him the example of parents who love and are committed to one another for life. Thank you for allowing him to pursue the Lord's calling on his life even when it meant moving across the country. And thank you for giving him to me as my husband. You have blessed me more than I can express.

Brian - Baby I love you! I thank the Lord daily for giving you to me! All the years I prayed for you, not yet knowing who you were, I could not have imagined a more perfect partner and friend. Your heart for the Lord and knowledge of His Word greatly inspires me. Your dedication to ministry is amazing. I love hearing stories of how the Lord has worked in your life and how He uses you to touch the lives of the students you minister to. I am in awe of your tenderness when I watch you with are going to be an amazing daddy when the day comes! And your love for me is more precious than I could ever deserve. Thank you for making me your wife and for treasuring me just as Christ treasures His bride.

May the Lord richly bless you today and in the days, and weeks, and years to come. Happy Birthday!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Catching Up...

Wow! It's been quite a while since we posted last. Time is flying by! We're enjoying the seasons--both of life and actual seasons. It has been a hot fall, but today is cool; perhaps the weather will actually change now.

Last time we posted we asked for prayer for our friends the Clarks, whose daughter was born quite early. They are all doing very well. Kate has been home for almost two weeks now and is doing beautifully.

We'll be posting some fall pictures soon so check back!

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Rejoicing and Praying

We just found out that our dear friends, Michael and Abby Clark, welcomed their little baby girl Kate Elise into the world this past Thursday evening, 7.5 weeks early! Both Abby and Kate are doing well, but they have quite the journey ahead of them. Kate came into the world 3 lbs 11 oz and 17 inches - a beautiful, tiny girl!

Would you please join us as we rejoice in the Lord's goodness in providing Kate's safe passage into the world. Also, pray with us that He would continue to work in this situation to His glory as Kate grows and thrives in the coming weeks, as Abby heals from the emergency C-section, and as Michael, Abby and Kate adjust to life together.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Disneyland 2008

On September 20th we had the privilige of hanging out at Disneyland for the day thanks to Jewelly's work. Capital Group gave all their employees and family members tickets, free hats, and Disney Dollars for food. The tickets were park hoppers so we enjoyed the rides at Disneyland and California Adventure. I think our favorites were the Tower of Terror and Space Mountain.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Wonderful Weekend

This weekend was everything a weekend should be. Time together, time with family, time with friends; resting, working, accomplishing, playing. It's times like these I remember how completely blessed I am to live the life I do.

Saturday evening we had a wonderful dinner and game night with our good friends April and David and Kim and Brandon. Thanks for an awesome evening guys! We had a great time!

This afternoon we took a picnic to the park and enjoyed fellowship in the beauty of God's creation. As we were talking Brian brought up an interesting thought. In our society we have built up so much land, destroying the natural beauty of the earth; yet everywhere you go people have intentionally maintained plots of land, parks, where we can go to relax and soak up the beauty that once was. He mused that perhaps our need for parks is related to our desire for what was lost in Eden, an attempt to attain what once was, but is now lost. We were created to live in the center of God's glorious creation--to tend it and enjoy it. So next time you see a park, think about the garden of Eden and look forward to heaven when we will be again in the center of God's creation as He intended it to be.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

One Year Together

Jewelly and I celebrated one year together on August 3rd. What a great year it has been. The Lord has blessed us tremendously. We celebrated our anniversary with a trip up the Pacific Coast Highway to San Luis Obispo. We stayed in a cute place called the Apple Farm Inn. I highly recommend it. They have a cider mill on sight and they would bring out cider and fresh baked cookies each night at 7:00pm. We sipped hot cider and played a game of checkers in the lobby. We also drove up to San Simeon and took a tour of Hearst Castle. We were amazed at the beauty and the magnitude of the castle as a whole, but more so than that, we were in awe of each individual pillar, statue, piece of furniture, carved ceiling, painting, and tapestry that he had brought in from all over the world. There is more history and culture represented there than in any museum I have ever been in. After leaving Hearst Castle we drove a few miles further to visit the Elephant Seals hanging out on the beach. Another reminder of God's great handiwork.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Crash Test Dummies

Jewelly and I are starting to feel a bit like crash test dummies. Sunday evening, while at the Costco gas station, my car got hit again. A big truck tried pulling past me as I was starting to put my credit card in the machine. He turned a little early and clipped my front left bumper. I didn't even notice that it happened until Jewelly jumped out of the car. That is the second time my car has been hit this year. Jewelly's car has been hit 3 times. Between the two of us that makes 5 accidents in one year. Two of them were hit and runs (while the cars were parked in parking lots. Two were due to other people running into us while we were present. One was kind-a-sorta our fault, but both cars were backing up at the same time out of parking spaces, so it doesn't really count, right!!! Thank you Lord, for teaching us humility and for helping us not put too much value on our cars. Help us use our cars as tools to build your Kingdom. Amen!

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Macchiato the Gopher Hunter!

Macchiato decided to become a gopher hunter for the day. He was unsuccessful at catching the gopher, but he sure had fun trying.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

The 4th of July!!!

We hope you had a happy and safe 4th of July!

Our day was pretty low key and uneventful. We spent the day hanging out with the fam. In the late morning we went down to the Brea country fair with Grandma and Grandpa; it was super hot, so that didn't last too long. Macchiato went to the fair with us and ran from patch of shade to patch of shade. We headed home pretty quickly since he looked like he was about to collapse! We're thinking he regretted begging to come in the end. :-)

After we got home we took a much needed afternoon nap to recover from the heat.

Dinner was a family bar-b-que at Grandfather and Grandmother's. Uncle Mark put together a feast, as always, and we finished it off with a delicious and festive cake that Shannon made.

In the evening we headed over to the Fullerton Courthouse to watch some fireworks. We had fun with the camera while hanging out waiting for the show to start. Enjoy!

Thursday, July 3, 2008


Wow! We have really fallen behind on our blog. It is amazing how quickly time flies by and the way in which day to day activities squeeze every last minute out of each day. June was a fun, yet busy month that somehow slipped quickly by. Here are a few things that took place this past month:

- Brian wrapped up his second year teaching at Whittier Christian High School
- Kaylee turned one!
- Jewelly got a new hairstyle!
- We enjoyed more time getting to know friends from Bound By Grace (BBG - Our Fellowship Group at church)
- We moved in with my parents to save money for a house

We plan on adding posts related to several of these topics in the next few check back soon!

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Roughing It!

Roughing It! That is what we were supposed to be doing this Memorial Weekend. The annual camping trip was on the calendar. The reservations were made. Jewelly and I even purchased an air mattress and new sleeping bags. The fun was about to begin...until we found out it was snowing on our campsite! Although our sleeping bags are rated for 30 degree weather, we opted not to test them out. The camping trip was cancelled. All hope was not lost though. A friend of the family called with the news that he was able to get us a condo in Big Bear. Saturday morning we headed up the mountain. When we arrived, we were blown away by the place. It was beautiful!!! The place was huge. It had four bedrooms. Each bedroom had its own bathroom, all of which contained large jaccuzi tubs and jaccuzi showers. The living room, kitchen and dining area were also quite nice. Hopefully some of it can be seen in the pictures. We were truly blessed.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Jewelly's Birthday!

Yaaah!!! Jewelly's Birthday is this week, Thursday, May 15th. I am so grateful that God gave her life and then gave her to me. I'm a blessed man.

Friday, May 9, 2008


Thank you all for keeping Tom and our family in your prayers these past few days. The surgery went well. It ended up being more extensive than the doctor had hoped...they had to make a third incision in his back along with the two on his chest and neck. The surgery was originally supposed to be 5 hours, but it ended up being close to 8. Needless to say Tuesday was a very long day for the entire family. We were all at the hospital more than 14 hours!

These past few days have been very important as the medical team has been working on regulating Tom's pain and ensuring that his oxygen and blood levels return to healthy ranges. The doctor placed him in ICU Tuesday for observation and as far as we know he is still there. This is not indicative that he is in critical condition, the doctor just wants to be extra cautious given the state of Tom's lungs (from emphysema) and risk of pneumonia if his breathing is not as it should be.

Brian and I are back in California now. We are checking in with his mom, Judy, daily and will try to keep the blog updated. We really do appreciate your prayers as we continue to trust and seek the Lord through this.

Monday, May 5, 2008

Prayer Request

As you may or may not know, Brian and I are in Michigan right now to spend some time with his family as his dad, Tom, has surgery. Tom is working through esophageal cancer and they have decided to do surgery to remove the tumor that is in his esophagus. The surgery is scheduled to take place tomorrow, Tuesday, May 6 at 11:30AM (EST). We would all really appreciate it if you would keep Tom and the family in your prayers as this takes place. We will be flying home Wednesday evening and will be sure to update you all when we have a chance.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Reminiscing about our Engagement

So far it has been an amazing nine months. As our one year anniversary approaches we have been reminiscing about our engagement and how much fun we had. I sent Jewelly on a scavenger hunt to a few locations that had special meaning to us. I gave her clues that were put inside little smiley face eggs. The first clue took her to a terrace on a hill where we had thought about having a wedding reception. Her dad and one of her brothers were waiting for her with the next clue. That clue took her to Yogurtland, the place where it all started for us. Two of her other siblings were waiting for her there. The next clue took her to a park on a hill where a few months earlier she had given me her first kiss. It was there that she caught up with me for the last clue. You have to watch the slideshow to see what happened next.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

The Fam

Here's the latest Nelson and Hart family pic taken while we explored the Montage Resort in Laguna Beach!
From left to right: Braden, Mike (Dad), Stephanie (Mom), Morgan, Emily, Jewelly, Brian, Natasha, Anne (holding Kaylee), and Owen.

Are you done yet???

As you may know Brian is currently working on his Masters in Apologetics. Going into this weekend he had to finish reading his fourth book of the semester, write a book report, and complete a question set consisting of eight questions, each three to four paragraphs in lenght. By the grace of God he finished all of it and we still got to spend some time together.

One of the highlights of our weekend was going to pick up our wedding album today. Yes, you read that correctly, we have been married for almost nine months and we just got our wedding album...better late than never, right? It turned out beautiful and make me excited to print more pictures from our wedding and hang them in our house! The other fun thing we did today while out in Glendora picking up our album was visit some model homes. Though they are way out of our range, which at the moment is the apartment we are in, we had fun dreaming!

Here are some pics of Brian working on his school stuff. I got a little bored this evening! =)

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Beach Day

Jewelly and I headed down to Huntington Beach today to spend some time with a few friends. We recently met up with another couple who go to our church. They also play beach volleyball. I was able to play a few games. Wow! Talk about being out of shape. I got winded just warming up. Jewelly was watching, while hanging out with a few of the lady friends. After playing two games and getting sweaty, a few of us took a stroll down to the ocean and jumped in. It was quite frigid, but oh so refreshing!!!

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Living and Loving

As of today Brian and I have been married 8 months and two days. What an incredible time this has been! Over and over we have stopped to marvel at the precious gift we have been given in one another. This is a beautiful season of two lives becoming one in the grace and mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ. In our blogging we hope to share all that the Lord is doing in and through us as we journey together with Him.