Thursday, December 30, 2010

I Am.

Last year, for my birthday post, I sat down at the closing of a quiet year to write these very words:

(pulled from post December 30, 2009)
It's taken me awhile to grasp it all, but I have finally arrived at the grown-up place of life is what you make it and there are lots of things in life we go through that aren't comfortable or ideal, but they could be so incredibly worse, and a simple life of comfort does nothing to change us, mold us, make us into better, stronger more beautiful versions of ourselves...I have been reminded so much these past couple weeks of just how wonderfully blessed we are and the older I get, the more I embrace change as opportunity to learn just what I am capable of.

I am capable of so much. And I am excited at the opportunity of new challenges, more love...

Perhaps I had been planted for too long and this little bit of discomfort will challenge me, in my thirty-first year, to push myself more toward new chapters in the story of our life.

They will be good chapters.
...it's surreal to know in just a matter of a few weeks, we will know her and our lives as we know it will be changed for good.



A month later, 2010 truly began when I was again transformed by the beautiful miracle of pushing out a tiny pink body, slippery and smooth, in a defining moment that seared my soul.

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Sometimes I wonder if somewhere within me, there was a part of me that knew, a part of me that was preparing all along for the beautiful new journey our family would begin.

This year has been extraordinary.
This year has been painful.
This year has been enlightening.
This year has unearthed hidden treasure within me.

One year later, I am here.

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I feel blessed and content and excited to be writing a new and better story for our family.

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I've gone to write this post about four times, and I felt inadequate every time. Because there's just so much.

And it's not just that this "big" thing happened to us. Down syndrome is nothing compared to other defining moments that shift the worlds of so many. Many of you have had much more dramatic jolting moments of truth that began beautiful stories.

It's more than that.

And I don't even really know what it is.

But this year, I have uprooted the deepest beliefs within me. I have questioned everything. I have spent hours thinking in the shower, driving in the car, lying in bed at night while everyone else sleeps. I have pushed myself to be more, to see more, to do more.

And I have arrived not in a world of answers but in a world of good questions. Questioning is good. It draws the best from us. It calls us to action. And somewhere, amid the action, I've realized the answers aren't even important anymore. Because where I am feels good. I am learning. I am striving to be more. I am loving, and that alone makes me happy.

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I love to love.

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She's giving me a butterfly kiss. And I'm loving it.


My world felt a bit shaken earlier this year, but slowly, it rebuilt. Strong and mighty.

And I am grateful for all the amazing mintues this year gave me. All 525,600 of them.

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Sunset, Isle of Capri. You have no idea how happy my heart was at this moment.

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Nella's Dedication Ceremony, Sunset, Barefoot Beach. With our beautiful Village.

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Three Men and a Baby...and I love them all.


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The girl who made me a mama turns three ripe years. May.


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Poppa turns 60. And the greatest Duo of all time: My Family and Dancing. September.

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My girls, Key West family trip. June.

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A blessed Sunday.

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My heart beating outside my body...in the form of two little blonde souls.

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Check off Bucket List: Picnic in Central Park, August.

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Check off Bucket List: Watching my girls play with kindred spirits in Montana hills, September.

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My girl found love and courage and confidence with pink leotards, plie's and Miss Blair. September.

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My mama comes and all is right with the world. September.

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Didn't know it was on the Bucket List, but it was. And so is going back. Park City, Utah. December.

Oh, it was a good year.

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And I know my heart will stretch so much more these coming years. More learning, more growing, more opportunity to rise to the occasion.

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For all the years I may have searched for who I am, I have found the answer in my thirty-first year.

I am capable.

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And tonight, at the end of another year and at the brink of a new one, I close with the very same words I wrote last year.

I am capable of so much. And I am excited at the opportunity of new challenges, more love.

They will be good chapters.


Happy New Year. Wrap up all the richness of this year, tuck it away and embrace the amazing potential of this next year. You are capable.

*Thank you to the amazing, talented, capable Kaity Ayres for these photos and for loving my girls. Kaity, I love you and your amazing heart. You are going great places, Baby.

And thank you to every one of you who have read, shared and supported with so much encouragement this year. Thank you.

454 comments:

1 – 200 of 454   Newer›   Newest»
Dawn said...

OMG I'm first :). Beautiful post! Loved it.

My son turns 4 today...New Years Eve...Happy Birthday to you too!

www.piggfamilyblog.blogspot.com

Lindsay said...

happy birthday, kelle! you are amazing!

{andthisiswhatshesaid} said...

Love this. .... I am capable... new motto!

Diana Paisley said...

Happy Birthday, Kelle! Thank you for being such an inspiration to me as a mother. I became a mother this year (in March), and your blog has encouraged me in so many ways. Watching you love your daughters helps me love my daughter even more than I could ever imagine. Know that your life has heart-ties to so many people out there...like me.

CSaM said...

Happy birthday Kelle. Those photos are amazing.

Happy 2011 to you and your family.

Jen said...

Happy birthday, kelle. The photos are amazing as always, both past and present. Your family pictures by Kaity are exquisite. Enjoy your 32nd year.

Jen

Http://lovingpeanut.blogspot.com

Claire said...

Ohmygosh! Ohmygosh! I am SO in love with the pictures of you and your girls. Like, they made me tear up. SO beautiful. Happy birthday Kelle!!! I can't wait to see what 2011 brings to you and your beautiful family.

Christina @ Faith for Fertility said...

What a beautiful post. You are a beautiful woman with two very beautiful daughters. Happy Birthday & New Year. Enjoy your 32nd year. :)

�� Ambrosia said...

I dont know that I've ever commented on your blog, but I have been reading for a few weeks. I feel compelled to tell you that I am absolutely moved by your words. Your spirit and your heart are inspiring. This post has me near tears, and I dont even know you. The images are incredible.

I AM CAPABLE.
Such simple words to live by.
Thank you for sharing bits and pieces of your life!
~a.

Chocolate Mom aka Blupoetres said...

Happy Birthday!!!

Thank so much for always sharing your most precious moments with us!!

The foresty photos are simply breath taking!

Amber said...

Happy Birthday! (It's not your birthday yet where I am, but I thought I'd say it anyways!)

I hope to find who I am by my 31st birthday...hopefully sooner!

I think you're girls are amazing, but of course you already know that! Thanks so much for inspiring so many of us with your kind, funny words, and your beautiful photography!


www.amber-amphotography.blogspot.com

mcstephanie81 said...

Happy Birthday!!

Celina GarcĂ­a said...

Beautiful...and inspiring as always. Congratulations Kelle and thanks for sharing...from your #1 follower in Mexico

Rosa said...

Kaity's pics of you and the girls are absolutely breathtaking! Beautiful..and can I add, loving your dress! Happy New Year. :)

KWQR said...

Absolutly gorgeous photos - Kaity rocks!
You are such an inspiration in all that you do.
Happy new year!!!!
xo
Kate

Micaela said...

Happy birthday! Beautiful post and Thank YOU for this last year of inspiration and beauty in your words and pictures.

Nicole said...

Fan-freaking-tabulous!! It's been such an amazing, soul-searching, learning experience for me to watch you grow and take hold of everything in your life with a brand new vengeance this year. I know everyone says this a lot, but sincerely, thank you for letting us go along with you.

Happy New Year Friend!!

(p.s.-first sonogram in one week! eek!!)

xoxo~n

The Hall Family said...

You have me in tears. The pictures are beautiful, you are beautiful and your sweet girls are beautiful! I pray youhave continued blessings in this following year as well. Thank you for sharing your life!

Marci said...

Kelle, this post just brought happy tears to my eyes! I absolutely loved this and needed to hear "I am capable." You are so amazing. Your pictures are stunning too, your little ones are just dolls. Thank you for writing this! Have a beautiful 2011 :)
Much love, Marci

Poppy's Mom said...

Happy Birthday, Kelle!
These pictures are amazing. Truly beautiful family.

This is my first time commenting (although I have emailed you in the past), and I wanted to let you know that one of the highlights of my 2010 was finding your blog. Your positivity and authenticity have affected me, and I'm grateful!

Happy New Year to you.

jennywren said...

Beautiful thoughts and words. Thanks for sharing your journey-it has been amazing to watch from way afar. You are capable and help others believe that they, too, can be capable. I love reading your blog and always look forward to what you have to say-and your beautiful pictures. Happy New Year. It's going to be a good one.

mexiyorki said...

Until now, I was one of those hundreds of readers I'm sure who read your blog and never ever comment. There were so many times I came very close but ultimately decided against it. Kelle, I love reading about you and your family. It's something I so look forward to, at times I laugh out loud to myself, at others there isn't enough tissue to wipe my tears away. Thank you.

Lisa said...

This is so what I needed to read right now. Thank you and Happy Birthday to one of the most inspirational women I know. (Okay, don't really know you, but I really do know you...)

Paula said...

You are wonderful. I live over in Palm Coast Florida. We are on somewhat similar journeys with our kids - and I have drawn stength, hope and wonderful meaning from your blog. Just want you to know your capabilities expand way out into the world. Wishing you a year filled with unimaginable happiness and blessings!

Monique said...

Oh happy happy to you Kelle Hampton!! What breath taking photos of you and your girls...pure heaven!! Love the butterfly kisses...and Nella's laugh...

Thank you for sharing pieces of you-both the extraordinary ones and the painful ones over the past year since I first met you and your family along your journey through this blog. You inspire, you teach, you share your laughter and your quench for life, you truly have a beautiful soul and I feel blessed to have found you in this internet world!
You ARE so CAPABLE of so much (and I only know you from what you share here! I can only imagine what you're like in person!..beyond amazing I'm sure)...the next chapters in your life are going to be BIG ones-good ones...and I can hardly wait to read them all!!
God Bless
Monique
Happy New Year to you and your family

Jenny said...

Happy Birthday, Kelle! Tears in my eyes, your writing and your blog is amazing. Happy New Year!!

Tiffany said...

Beautiful post.
I love the photos of you and the girls, absolutely stunning!

mellmo said...

Your so awesome Kelle! Happy Birthday and many wonderful blessings for you and your family in 2011!!!

Lindsay said...

Beautiful post. Beautiful photos of you and your girls. I love me some Nella smiles. You can just see the joy exuding from her little soul. Happy Birthday Kelle...hoping your next year is even better than this last one!

lightkeepersdaughter said...

Happy Birthday, Kelle! I absolutely love the beautiful purity or the pictures of you and your girls...

Your whole post, along with these amazing pictures, make my heart happy.

Thank-you for sharing ....

Rosemary

Stef said...

Happy Birthday, Kelle!! You're beautiful and your family is beautiful and so your blog even reflects beauty.
I'm glad you had a great day. Even 'gladder' that you had a great year; a year of growth and realness.

Also, I think there's a typo, but I could be wrong {and I almost hate pointing it out} did you mean to say
"A month later, 2011 truly began when I was again transformed by the beautiful miracle of pushing out a tiny pink body, slippery and smooth, in a defining moment that seared my soul." ??
Maybe you meant 2010? Either way, loved the post and love you!

Jenn said...

The first picture of you and the girls is STUNNING! You are beautiful, lady, and so are your girls. Inspiring and wonderful post as always.. you never disappoint =)

Mommy to a Peanut said...

Happy Birthday! And Happy New Year! I'm so glad to come across your blog this year. I look forward to reading about the adventures you share with your little ones, and I so look forward to all the adventures I shall have with mine next year.

~Debra said...

Happy Birthday & Happy New Year as well! Praying 2011 is an amazing year for you all! God Bless!

Jule said...

Happy Birthday Kelle!

Thank you for your beautiful Blog, it's enriched my 2010.

Amanda said...

Beautiful! Happy Birthday and Happy New Year!

Dayna said...

Kelle, your shoot in the woods was amazing! And your dress was gorgeous....can I borrow it? :)
Have a great birthday and an even better new year!



www.ribbontwist.com

McMel said...

happy birthday kelle! may 2011 be our best year ever!

The T Family said...

Happy Birthday Kelle. The photos of you and the girls by Kaity are amazing!!

Funnelcloud Rachel said...

Happy Birthday, Kelle! And Happy New Year! I just turned 32 a week ago. It's going to be a good year.

The butterfly kisses picture is extraordinary! Actually, they all are!

Katy said...

Beautiful, just beautiful!

ayshamartin said...

LOVE it! Happy Birthday Kelle! The pictures of you and your girls are gorgeous (well done Kaity). I think 2011 has amazing things in store for you ... Happy New Year!

Jessica said...

I have been following your blog for a while now and can not thank you enough for how your posts have inspired me to savor every moment of life. As usual, you did not disappoint and I think I have even found my latest mantra..."I am capable"
Thanks!

greatgreenroom.blogspot.com

Jen said...

Happy Birthday, Kelle. I hope the coming year is even more wonderful than the last one has been for you and your family.

Roksalanna said...

Kelle,
This such a beautiful description of your journey this year.
Happy New Year to you and your gorgeous family!
Happy New Year fellow commenters too!
Kelle look forward to more of your wonderful posts in 2011!
xxoo

Lisa said...

So beautiful and so inspiring. I had no idea how much I needed to hear it tonight! Thank you so much for sharing your heart and your life with all of us.

-Lisa

Jennifer said...

Beautiful synopsis of the past year! I am thankful someone showed me your blog so I could walk beside you in our journey this year.

:o)

j210209 said...

Happy Birthday Kelle!!
This was so inspiring to read :) xx

j210209 said...

Happy Birthday Kelle!!
This was so inspiring to read :) xx

heather said...

I just opened up your blog on my phone as I was going to sleep. Hoping for a birthday post. As soon as I saw the title, "I am", I ran down then stairs to read it on the computer. I just knew it had to have my favorite song playing along with the beautiful words and pictures. What an amazing year! You are soaking up every little bit of goodness around you and I love it! The pictures of you and your girls are beautiful! And I think I recognize that beautiful dress on you . . . Park City? Stunning!

Love you, friend!
xo

P.S. Love that returning to Park City is on your bucket list!

Debbie said...

and a very Happy New Year to you. I have spent this year with your family both online and in my heart. You were blessed when you didn't know it but finding that blessing has made you bloom into such a wonderful Mom. I truly love your girls and even if we never get to meet I want you to know that. Happy New Year family, the best is yet to come...♥

Pamela Rachel said...

Amazing!

I Love Your blog...You Inspire Me!
Maybe Someday my blog will be something to read too...Right now, I just keep up with my kids.

I too have a DS Diagnosis experience... My Son, Isaiah, is now 5. And even tho my DS experience was different than yours...Our Hearts felt the same. Zay is the Biggest Joy in Mine and My Daughters Life. We are Blessed!

And...December 30 is My Birthday Also... So Happy Birthday To You Too!

Thank You for Sharing so We can see!

~ God's Blessings to You and Yours

Megs said...

You and your baby girls are so incredibly beautiful, inside and out. Thank you so much for this blog... You are always so positive, inspiring, and real. I don't know how many times your blog posts have brought tears to my eyes! I wish nothing but the best to you and your sweet, gorgeous family in 2011 and all the years to follow.

atebordo said...

Kelle...I have never commented before, though often moved by your posts. My sister a mother of a 17month old little boy became blog obsessed and told me about your story. I have faithfully followed you and your story. Your remark on how a year of questions led to more questions rather than answers was striking to me. I am not a mother, rather a twenty year old student, but I too set out the year looking for answers and found more questions. I became comfortable in not knowing the answers, but your statement of "I am capable" is revolutionary to me, and although I do not know the answers and am filled with more questions, you have brought me to the realization that "I am capable". Though our struggles are very different and our questions come from different places we can both find comfort in that statement and I thank you for that. Sorry this is so long, I just wanted to share! You are an amazing mother and you are inspiring, thank you for sharing your journey it means the world. The joy and struggle you are share is inspiring and I never leave a post not feeling more empowered. Have a great new year and much love to you and your wee ones!

PaisleyJade said...

Have a wonderful New Year - I re-read Nella's birth story last night and once again tears filled my eyes. What a journey - amazing how in the midst of tough times, we find the beauty of life. xoxo

Katarina said...

I cried! Again!
Happy birthday, supermom!

Kimberlee said...

Thanks for saying that questions are good. I needed to hear that. :)

kymberli q. said...

Happy Birthday! Mine was the day after Christmas!

I love the "capable". I ran my 2nd 10K on Thanksgiving and my friend said, "You are totally capable." I wrote it on my hand and it is now a part of what I will always think of myself. I named a playlist after it: http://kymberliq.blogspot.com/2010/11/10kapable.html
In fact, I think I will use that picture for my blog post about what I plan to accomplish in 2011.

I will be with you in 2011 - keeping up with you and your precious family. Your blog has made me smile so much. Happy, blessed birthday. :)

Christine, Chris and Tyler said...

Hapy Birthday Kelle, may your 2011 be as rich and juicy and soul-stretching as 2010.

Erika said...

kelle, you almost share a birthday with my husband! his is new year's eve (12/31).

i am so grateful that i found your blog almost a year ago, and for everything you put out there in your writing. you have made me a better blogger- more honest, authentic, and have encouraged me to focus on the good in my life and not the tragedy.

you are an incredible woman, and YES, you ARE capable!!!!

xoxo,
erika

theurthmama.com

Roksalanna said...

Just wanted to add to my previous comment Happy Birthday Kelle!
Hope that you had a fabulous day!

Emma Cullen said...

I'm crying, and you are just so beautiful in every way, your family and your village. I'm ten years behind you, and I'm bursting to see what I can become as I grow older. It would be a blessing beyond my wildest dreams to have what you've got right here.

Lots of Love, Emma xoxoxo

shell said...

that was really beautiful.
happy birthday.

My Secret Rooms said...

You are right: it's the hard/challenging things in life that not only defines you but who offers you the opportunity to find out who you are.
Furthermore you get be who you need to be, thanks to them.
I have changed so much during the years and I know, for sure,I'm capable.
It is such a solid feeling and a good thing to lean on.

Happy New Year!
(beautiful pics, of course, gorgeous!)

Dam said...

Kelle, I only post once a Purim (rarely), but won't pass up the chance to wish you a wonderful birthday and a capable 2011. Thank you for the past year's words, pictures, laughter and tears. May they continue...

gabrielle said...

Happy Birthday and New Year, I discovered your wonderful blog a year ago when our friend and neighbours baby was born with Down Syndrome, I also as part of my job go to the deliveries of baby's with Down Syndrome and have to tell their parents often times. Your words and pictures have given me a new understanding and I have given your blog address to parents too in the days after the birth of their baby.
Thanks for sharing your beautiful family and story

cindy said...

Happy Birthday Kelle..Your blog brings honesty, hope, silliness and laughter. Your girls are beautiful ! May 2011 be full of new accomplishments, joy, love and peace. The pictures of you and the girls are beyond gorgeous.. Your blog welcomes everyone and inspires all. Much love ...

Betsi* said...

Happy New Year to you and to your family! You are such an inspiration to me, raising two boys with autism. When I am feeling blue and defeated, I can turn to your blog and say "Kid, life's not bad. It's good. And you are going to thrive rather than survive."
Thank you for that gift. Because, it's not in the peppy enthusiasm you exude that I feel most inspired, it's in the reality, the acknowledgment of grief and the way that you handle it. It's in the mourning turned to gladness that I see the silver lining.
Thank you, not only for being a joyful voice but for being real.

aprilanecdotes said...

More learning, more growing, more opportunity to rise to the occasion...May we all embrace that thought in 2011. Thank you for taking us on your journey. We have all learned by watching you grow. Happy Birthday and Happy New Year! susan

Mihaela said...

This post reminds me of a favorite quotation I found on my friend's blog. It says:

Be patient toward all that is unsolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves. Do not now seek the answers, which cannot be given to you because you would not be able to live them. And the point is to live everything. Live the questions.
-Rainer Maria Rilke

You've got it.
I love you. Even though I've never met you.
Happy Birthday!!
Happy New Year!!

Cheers,

missvlw said...

Happy birthday to you beautiful momma!!! the pictures of you and ur girls are beautiful! I discovered your site this yr and am completely hooked and motivated by it! Best wishes to you and ur fam in 2011! Btw: we are the same bday!!! by the looks of it, u had a great one!

Babs said...

Happy birthday Kelle! Thank you so much for sharing your words and pictures. I'm 30 years older than you are and still learning, still inspired by women like you who are living life completely, embracing its challenges, and above all, loving. You have discovered life's essence, and your gift is in the telling of it. Happy New Year!

Melissa said...

Happy Happy Birthday! Beautiful writing and beautiful pictures as always!

Smiley said...

Happy Birthday, Kelle! :) I thank God for this blog...it has helped me see things a little more clearly and inspires me. <3 I wish you many more! Love from Georgia...

antonia said...

have a bleesed new year!

happy birthday

xxx

The Smith Family said...

Happy Birthday Kelle!
I have been following your blog for about a year now and have enjoyed reading every single post. I have learned from you, cried with you and laughed with you through out this year.
I look forward to what 2011 holds for you and your beautiful family.

Many blessings...

LilianEveDesigns said...

You have a beautiful heart- the ability to transform life- allow one to await every word that dances off your tongue.

May God continue to bless you in the new year. Happy Birthday.

The woodland fairy photos are to be cherished baby!

xoxo

LilianEveDesigns said...

You have a beautiful heart- the ability to transform life- allow one to await every word that dances off your tongue.

May God continue to bless you in the new year. Happy Birthday.

The woodland fairy photos are to be cherished baby!

xoxo

Rik said...

In a world too often cold and critical, in a human family too often competitive and cruel, did God, through an extra chromosome, call and collect a village of vintage love and understanding to celebrate the beauty of imperfection? Hot coffee in a crudely crafted and lopsided mug made by your own precious child tastes better than from a perfect porcelain cup. Hold up your mugs, folks...high...with smiles and shouts. Beautiful, beautiful post. A message to carry us into a year where we will dance through brokenness and sing loudly above the cynic's sour serenade. Live loud. Laugh hard. Hug deeply. And sometimes, skip when you walk. Here we come, 2011! We are capable!

Sara said...

A very happy birthday and happy new year to you, Kelle! Thank you for inspiring me this past year to do more and be more and enjoy the smallest things in life. In this hustle-bustle world we live in, your blog is one of a few things that keep me grounded and remind me where I need to be (and also not to beat myself up about feeling certain ways sometimes). I'm so glad I happened upon it - thanks for taking all of us along for the ride.

May you and your family continue to be blessed in 2011!

Amy said...

Kelle,

Happy Birthday! You have such a beautiful soul and are truly a beautiful person inside and out! Your post brought me to tears...as I reflect on 2010 and the birth of my first daughter! Thank you so much for every post that you write. You inspire me to be a better person! May you find greatness in 2011 in all parts of your life!!!

lbfoster said...

What beautiful pictures of you and your girls.

I think somewhere inside most of us, we knew. I dismissed so many things. Looking back now, I believe I was being ever so subtly prepared.

That post is one of my favorites, and I admit I went back and read those very words a few times this past year to remind myself, that yes, we are capable.

Cheers to bringing on 2011. So much goodness to come. Happy New Year.

Scribble Scrabble said...

Happy Birthday! The pictures are beautiful of you and the girls. I look forward to reading your blog and watching your girls grow in this upcoming year.
Happy New Year.

Gina said...

Beautiful pictures! Happy Birthday and Happy New Year!

Mills Family said...

Beautiful, beautiful post!! total tears while reading it.. you are such a strong, amazing, awesome person and Momma!! =)
Happy Birthday Lady!

Melissa said...

Beautiful. Love the words, photos, inspiration!!

heather said...

AMAZING , you have enriched my life and Ive never met you.
Happy Birthday .

Love and Blessings
The Doughty

Lish said...

Everytime...your posts give me that that uplifting feeling, brighten my day and make me hold on to every single moment! Your are a true inspiration, with beautiful words and a beautiful family..have a wonderful birthday!

Happiness is... said...

Amazing. Your soul was guiding you before you knew it. Wow. Growth is painful, but oh so worth it in the long run. And if that's Kaity (the young girl that you shot a few months ago), she has amazing potential. Cherish her beautiful gift to you.

Mihaela - wonderful quote - thank you so much for sharing.

Nicole - Congratulations on your pregnancy. That's huge news. We are loving our hats, so thanks for being so talented. May 2011 give you a bit more balance.

KC - can't wait to read your wise words...

Happy New Year everyone. May we all greet our potential of 2012 with open arms.

-Jennifer from Annapolis

Kelly said...

Love the summary of the year! Zowie you crammed a lot in 365.5 days! And Kaity Ayres!!! WOW! Amazing photos! You knocked these out of the park and with a standing ovation to boot! xoxo

mamamia said...

Happy Birthday and Happy New Year!
It's incredible how one's heart can lead us into things we could not foretell, but knew that we needed the preparation for a special journey.
Thank you so much for everything you have shared this year, you give inspiration to so many of us, that we can be capable too.
God bless all of your family, 2011.

momto1 said...

I can't believe I've been following your blog and story for a year now! Thank you so much for sharing your words and photos and your story with so many strangers. You're awesome!

Sarah said...

Happy Birthday Kelle! I hope that this year brings whatever it is you want/need. Thank you for creating this little place on the interwebs that I can visit and be reminded that it is the small things that make this world so amazing. You are truly an inspiration! I can't wait to see what small things you will enjoy in 2011!

Sheva said...

Kelle Happy Happy birthday! In Jewish tradition a birthday is a day of blessings we give extra charity on our day make a party and take on a resolution to do something more or better, and the very best idea is that we beleive that a birthday is so special that you have the power to give blessings to others on your day. are you sure your not Jewish, lol,because I think you've done all these things without thought just instinctually. Please continue to celebrate, give and bless us all with your life that you graciously share with us all. Happy Birthday, MAZEL TOV !

Kim said...

Happy Birthday! This post made me emotional to think that I have been reading your blog for almost a year. You have changed and touched so many people you don't even know this year.
I also love when you sneak in a nursing picture of Nella. I nursed both of my kids for over a year and it's so special when they are around Nella's age and you're still going strong with it. I have many nursing pictures because I always wanted to capture it but mine are with one arm outstretched while I balanced a baby with the other arm. Yours are beautiful.

JenPep said...

I love this post. The pictures are breathtaking. Happy Birthday and Happy New Year.

Taylor said...

Happy Birthday! I loved this post and the pictures! I think my fav is the one of nella looking at the camera, you looking at her, and at the same time holding laineys hand and giving her support (she is leaning and your muscle is flexed supporting her)! Ill be 32 in March and cant wait to see what the year has in store for me- I dont know how it can beat this year :)

kwistytoodles said...

Happy Birthday! Lovely words, once again. Hope 2011 brings even more amazing things for you and your gorgeous family. x

J Scheppl said...

WOW! Beautiful post and beautiful pictures!

Happy New Year and Happy Birthday!!!!

Lianna said...

Simply one of the most beautiful posts I've ever read.

Happy New Year!
xoxo

Holly Taylor said...

Oh such beautiful pictures! Happy Happy Birthday and Happy New Year. Such a beautiful post. I love to reflect on what I have learned and come to know as true this time of year. You are amazing, not only because of your beautiful posts but you truly know yourself and share it with all of us. Heres to a wonderful 2011!

momtothreegirls.blogspot.com

Dawn said...

Happy Birthday Kelle! Beautiful post.. Your Dad's comments brought tears to my eyes. So touching, inspiring and beautiful.

Maria said...

Kelle~What stunning photos of you & the girls! You look absolutely heavenly. Wishing you a divine New Year, filled with more of the same, only better. Thank you, Nella for bringing me to this blog. Poppa~I love you. Peace & love & happiness to each & every one of you.
With love.

The Martys said...

Happy Birthday Kelle! The pictures are simply beautiful.

Here's to wonderful things in 2011!!

Cheers-
Amy

Shelly @ Life on the Wild Side said...

Thank you for opening your heart and allowing all of us to go on this journey with you. You are an amazing person, and even though I don't know you at all, I am grateful to you.

chantelle said...

Wow!! The photos of you,Nella and Lainey are breathtaking!! I love your quote "I am capable". I have a feeling I will be using that little tidbit a lot in the next few months!! Thank you for that!! xo You have given me so much these past 6 months that I have been reading your blog. My mother past away and I was only 21 and I was not quite sure what to do...For a while I just went through the motions of life...I could not talk to anyone about it,it was just way too hard..After reading your blog I have my fire back. You have reminded me that life is something to never take for granted and to live life to the fullest taking in those precious moments that you will never get back:) I am forever grateful to you for this..

Happy Birthday! All my love to you and your family in 2011! I can just see where 2011 will take you!!

Live hard, Play hard,LOVE hard!!

Chantelle

Kelly said...

Happy, Happy, Happy Birthday!
Happy New Year!

Those pictures are simply stunning. LOVE!

jodi said...

Happy, Happy Birthday, Kelle! You are a gift to so many. I love your insight on questions. I realized a few years ago that the older I get, the less I really know but that there is joy in living the questions.
Hugs from Michigan
jodi:)

PS - One of my favorite stories I listened to a few years ago on NPR
Utterly Humbled by Mystery
http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=6631954

Jacki said...

Kelle, as they so often have over the last year, your words and photos have made me smile and tear up and feel so very full of life and love. Thank you for sharing your family's journey. I think the picture of Nella and Poppa picnicking in Central Park is one of my favorites ever!

Happy birthday, and happy beautiful new year!!

Melissa LaRue Photography said...

As I am reading this, giggles are erupting through my home as daddy tickles my babies. It seems like this sound should be the soundtrack to life because, what better sound than to hear your babies laugh?

Your words soothe my soul in such a unique way. Happy Birthday, Kelle. You have changed my world, made me a better mother, lover and woman. Thank you, and Happy Happy Happy new year!

Kristen said...

Happy Birthday. And Happy New Year to your Beautiful Family.

Cheers to a talented amazing Mama!

*Jess* said...

Happy Birthday dear :) And many more to come!

Molly said...

"I have arrived not in a world of answers but in a world of good questions. Questioning is good. It draws the best from us. It calls us to action. And somewhere, amid the action, I've realized the answers aren't even important anymore. Because where I am feels good. I am learning. I am striving to be more. I am loving, and that alone makes me happy."

I feel silly quoting this whole chunk, but damn if you didn't write JUST the thing I needed. I'm glad the journey isn't made alone.

Happy birthday. May this year be a blessing to you, because you bless so many. Cheers to a fabulous woman, wife, and mama.

Anne said...

Happy birthday Kelle, you are an inspiration to many.

Anke said...

Happy Birthday and a very happy new year! The pictures of you and your girls are beautiful!!

LuLu said...

Beautiful post Kelle! Happy Birthday and wishing you a joyful New Year!
xo,
LuLu

Hannah said...

Happy Birthday, Kelle! You're amazing and inspiring -- and capable. On my bucket list one of the things would be to meet you and have you take a few photos. :)

Lotsa love and much happiness to you for the remainder of this year and into 2011!
--Hannah

Elizabeth said...

reading your blog is good for my soul. this post gave me chills. you are so inspirational! i am so happy that your year has been amazing. you have one of the best outlooks on life of anyone i have ever known, internet or real life :). happy birthday!

Brandi said...

You are so beautiful inside and out! Thank you for your blog. Happy Birthday!

Sarah said...

Happy Happy Birthday!

I know it's obvious, but you are SUCH an inspiration... My heart does a happy dance when a new post from you pops up in my Reader. I hope this year I will finally become a Mamma and strive to be as creative and open as you.

I am so grateful that you have shared the story for your family and really thinks that Oprah needs a clue in that your TV show would be MUCH more appealing than Bono's.

Cheers to 2011!

Sarah said...

Happy Birthday!! What an amazing post!!! Great pictures too, you and your girls and your family are beautiful!

Kristin said...

Absolutely beautiful. Happy Birthday!

Catherine (WA in PA) said...

Amazing post Kelle. Hope you had (and know you did) a great birthday.

Alisha said...

Gorgeous pictures, perfectly simple yet extremely profound post. Happy Birthday!

Sarah said...

Your dress is GORGEOUS

Sherri said...

I like that... I am capable of so much more. Hmmm. Thoughts to ponder now. Thank you.

Kristi said...

God has blessed you with much, Kelle. Being a wife. A mother of two darling souls. Capturing beauty through your words and pictures. And a truly sentimental heart. I love how you love. Thank you for sharing your life this past year. God bless you!

The Fischer Family said...

Happy birthday Kelle! I found your blog about 8 months ago and I'm so glad that I did! I have been learning to enjoy the small things from you and my life will be forever better because of it! Warm wishes for a truly fantastic 32 year! And a wonderful 2011!

Caroline said...

Happy Birthday, Kelle. Your blog is one of my "best of 2010" recollections and I'll note it when I make my year-end journal entry this weekend. Thank you for your words, your eloquence, your inspiration, and your spirit. My friend and I text each other to have a "Kelle Hampton day" several times a week, and can't wait to channel your energy if motherhood ever reaches us.

Your light shines farther than you know, The world over, thank you.

vernyvern said...

Beautiful. You inspire me. Happy Birthday to you! Thanks for making so many others feel capable by sharing your story with us!

Melissa said...

I am so thankful you choose to share your photos and words with us. I am so comforted/moved/motivated by it. We are the same age and my two girls are your girls' ages. Looking forward to all that I am capable of in 2011. Thank you Kelle!

Mali said...

Love this post Kelle, along with the countless others I have been so blessed to read this year. I am so happy I found this blog and you and your family have inspired me in countless ways. I'm 16 weeks pregnant and each post where you burst with love for your babies make me ache to hold and love my little bean.
Happy New Year!

Jill said...

Stronger AND wiser Kelle!

Beautiful.

Happy New Year!

Marilena said...

Happy Birthday! You have been such an encouragement to me over this past year and I thank you for it.
Tomorrow is my birthday. I used to hate sharing my birthday with a holiday but now I love it! I love literally starting a new year of my life with the rest of the world.
Hugs, Marilena

Amanda said...

happy birthday kelle! best wishes for another year full of new awakenings -- lots of love from nyc!

Ashley said...

WOW! I L.O.V.E. Kaity's pictures of you and your girls! Is one of them a picture of you nursing, Nella? Beautiful! I always enjoy reading your posts! :)

Happy New Year!

Katie said...

This post was beautiful from start to finish. Beautiful words and gorgeous photos. Happy Birthday! May 2011 bring you all your hart desires :) Thank you for sharing your story week after week. We all learn so much from you. Thank you!

lauraprell said...

Kelle, I found your blog about 9 months ago and I have falling in love with your writing, photos, and your love for life! These photos are so beautiful! May this be your best year yet! Thank you for continuing to inspire me!

Emily said...

Words can't describe it, This just pulls at my heart strings. Happy birthday.

Tiffany said...

Happy Birthday :)
Thank you for taking us all with you on your journey. It has truly been inspirational.

Jenny said...

Happy Birthday Kelle! Thank you for sharing your life and beautiful family. Can't wait to see what 2011 brings for all of us. Many many blessings...

Jenny
www.bryanandjenny.blogspot.com

Mama Marchand said...

Beautiful words, beautiful photos, beautiful family! :) Happy birthday, Kelle!

Denelle Downhill said...

Happy Birthday! You are blessed and I wish you more blessings in the new year!

Nettie said...

You always know the right thing to say. Your words have inspired me to become a better mom. A more patient, present mom.

The pictures of you and the girls are stunning.

Happy Birthday and Happy 2011!

MG Atwood said...

Capable, yes indeed, and don't forget amazing. The mother daughter photos are fabulous! Happy New Year, looking forward to watching all three of the Hampton women growing.

Valerie1283 said...

Happy Birthday fellow Capricorn! I just turned 27 yesterday! I love reading your blog!

Happy New Year's!

Renee said...

you're amazing. you inspire me on a daily basis. thank you. happy birthday.

Noan said...

Thank YOU! And a Happy, Happy New Year to you and yours!

Brooke said...

Happy birthday and Happy New Year's Eve, Kelle! The photos and your words, as always, are beautiful.

Tonja Keene said...

Happy birthday, Kelle! This post had me sobbing at my desk this morning. (Embarrassing! I am a receptionist!) So beautiful! I added a quote from you to my facebook profile.

"And I have arrived not in a world of answers but in a world of good questions. Questioning is good. It draws the best from us. It calls us to action. And somewhere, amid the action, I've realized the answers aren't even important anymore. Because where I am feels good. I am learning. I am striving to be more. I am loving, and that alone makes me happy."

Your words inspire me like no other! Thank you, thank you, thank you!

Happy New Year!

Angie said...

Kelle,

You are an amazing writer, mama, person. Your words make me want to rewind time somehow and find you when we were younger. I want to know the parents, the siblings, the family, the village, the experiences that made you this incredible person. I want to read the same books, have the same conversations, heck, even work at the same Victoria's Secret store you skipped out on! Anything to be near your goodness. How can you at this young age be so far along? So wise, loving, moving, extraordinary? We are the same age you and I and I feel like the one trying to catch up, to be extraordinary in my own way. Thank you for being a voice, a friend, a blessing to those of us out here in the great big world of blogland. You really have no idea how you've made a difference in my life.

Happy Birthday, dear friend.

XOXO,
Angie from Ohio

And those pictures are absolutely stunning. I adore the one of you nursing Nella. Precious!

MissMolly said...

DUDE. Awesome post and beautiful song to go with! You look so ethereal/heavenly/goreous in those pics!

Abby said...

As always Kelle, a tear. That is all I can say.

Happy Birthday!

My 31 is is march and as my mama told me the 30's are going to be "my best."

Blessings, Kelle!


www.littlemamaontheprairie.blogspot.com

ruthidejong said...

happy birthday Kelle ~ your blog is beautiful and inspiring. Many blessing to you and yours in 2011!

SallyGirl said...

Beautiful pictures, beautiful post. You are truly inspiring. Happy Birthday!

craftymama said...

Beautiful Kelle. You are a soul that speaks poetry and gives encouragement to all mothers, thank you!

Tali said...

i'm so grateful that i discovered your blog this year. thanks for sharing your family with us. and these latest pix of you with the girls inspires me to get some done like this with my two little girls. you look empowered and bold and strong and just downright bad ass.

Lassak Family said...

Where is your dress from? It is to DIE for!

UrbanCountryMom said...

Beautiful photos and beautiful post. As always. I read your blog for the first time when you posted Nella's birth story. It's hard to believe it's been a year.

Caroline said...

Happy Birthday Kelle! Your post reminds me of one of my favorite poems...hope you like it too!

I would like to beg you dear Sir, as well as I can, to have patience with everything unresolved in your heart and to try to love the questions themselves as if they were locked rooms or books written in a very foreign language. Don't search for the answers, which could not be given to you now, because you would not be able to live them. And the point is to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps then, someday far in the future, you will gradually, without even noticing it, live your way into the answer.
Rainer Maria Rilke, 1903
in Letters to a Young Poet

thetaooftulips said...

Tears of joy for you in your lovely and insiteful celebration of the beauty and wisdom of your life Momma- enjoy the big and small things this coming year.

C said...

Wow! Gorgeous photos of you and your girls!
Happy Birthday & Happy New Year1

I found your blog in January and have loved reading about your year :)

Sandy said...

Beautiful and breathtaking.

Happy Birthday.

Heather said...

Oh God, you inspire me. Happy Birthday and Thank YOU!! Heather

Aimee said...

Beautiful. Just beautiful. Happy Birthday Kelle!

Daniele said...

I can't believe it's been almost a whole year since your family became a part of my life. I can't begin to tell you how much good your writing and your family has brought to me. Sending love

Lindsey said...

You are a truley beautiful person and I have learned so much from you. You're writing is powerful and I love reading your blog. Thank you for sharing your story!

Danielle said...

Happy Birthday Kelle! Great pictures of you and your girls! What a post to end the year! Hope this next year is just as good for you, if not better! Wow! This is the first time I posted a comment! LOL! Yay! Happy New Year!

Klemm Family said...

Happy Birthday!

OK, I always love the pictures on your blog. The one of you holding Nella, you can't see your faces, her feet and she's holding you. Something about that is so beautiful to me. It grabs my heart.

Happy New Year!

meghory said...

I've enjoyed following this blog so much this year. I find so much inspiration in your words and you truly have the talent to express what I can't. I can't tell you how many times I've read with tears in my eyes and thought, "yeah, that". I love that you mentioned you love to love. Just last night I was writing in the journal I'm keeping for my little girl (15 months) and told her how I love to love her! Anyway, thanks again and Happy New Year to your beautiful family!

Katie said...

The Kaity Ayres photos are absolutely magical. Happy New Year, and thanks for continually making me smile!

lime79 said...

Thank-you for all you share. I always take away some sort of inspiration from your blog. You are blessed with a gift of writing and sharing. I am starting my 2011 with your words..."I am capable".
Happy Birthday & New Year from Canada!

lime79 said...

Thank-you for all you share. I always take away some sort of inspiration from your blog. You are blessed with a gift of writing and sharing. I am starting my 2011 with your words..."I am capable".
Happy Birthday & New Year from Canada!

Steph said...

Your post = excellence. Yet again.

Happy New Year from me, another mommy of 2 amazing little girls.

Steph

http://musingsofasarcasticmind.blogspot.com/

FLIP FLOP said...

Nice Pics! Beautiful family!

In the life of Nikki and Gary said...

Beautiful! Simply amazing. I can't believe it's already been so long. I've been reading since I can remember and I still get teary eyed... Happy Celebration Day of You! May the next year bring even more happiness, joy, and loves from your littles than the last year.

Sarah said...

You are beautiful, inside and out!

KaitlinCole said...

Oh Kel I love it. You SO look like mama earth in your pictures with the girl. I love reading this and time flies! I feel like I just stumbled on your blog with Nellas birth story! Thank you for letting us love your girls!

Domestic Diva said...

So very beautiful, all of it! Happy Birthday, Kelle ... you are amazing!!

xoxo,
April

Karen said...

Happy Birthday!!!

Just the 3 of Us said...

Wow...Happy Birthday...and Happy New Year to you and your family. I am so thankful I stumbled across your blog one evening awhile ago. The new photos of you and your girls are amazing.

Raina said...

Happy Birthday Kelle!! Beautiful pictures of you and your girls! I love your dress!

Bring on 2011!! I am ready for an amazing year!

Julie said...

Happy birthday. Happy New Year. Happy life!

Carissalayla said...

Happy Birthday Kelle, mine is today 33 years young!

I know I saw this every time I comment but you make me cry everytime I read your blog but today, I can't think of anything better than reading your birthday post and shedding some lovely happy tears on my birthday!

Here, Here to your 32 year and my 33rd!
Carissa

carissalayla.blogpost.com

Kelly said...

"For all the years I may have searched for who I am, I have found the answer in my thirty-first year.

I am capable."

Wow...what a defining statement...so simple, yet so deep and full of a million emotions. This post was so touching. I truly applaud you for your honesty and openness. The pictures of you and the girls are so gorgeous they brought tears to my eyes. I really feel like reading this blog has allowed me to work on myself and the type of mother I want to be for my children. This post really touched me because I am still (as I turn 30 in 2011) STILL trying to figure out my place in this world and I always question if I am being a good mom and the type of mom I want to be. Because of you, I am better and I thank you for that. You are such a wonderful inspiration.

Nikki James said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Nikki James said...

Donald Miller wrote "Sometimes you have to watch somebody love something before you can really love it yourself." Thats what you do for us Kelle. You've taught me and truly changed my entire world this year. My life is different because of you. Thank you.

Siobhan's Blog Spot said...

OMG! Tears!! It doesn't hurt that I am 7 weeks pregnant today with baby number 2(WOW), but everytime I read your beautiful words, my heart leaps and is grateful for everything in this world. I am grateful for wonderful writers/photographers/moms like you that motivate us others to be more, do more, live more see more, and love most of all! May God bless you and your gorgeous family throughout the next year!

Chris in FL--Joyful Mother said...

Oh my...how incredibly beautiful!! :) You are very, very blessed. You have such amazing, adorable little girls.

I actually stumbled upon your blog a few months back...this is my first time leaving a comment. You have a great blog indeed! Love visiting whenever I get a chance.

Happy 2011!

Chris xoxo

Regis said...

I am capable. I am capable. I am capable.

Thanks for my mantra for today. I needed some joy and positive thinking.

Crystal said...

Yes, you are capable! Thank you for letting me be part of your blog world this year. You've truly blessed me, along with Lainey & Nella and Brett and boys!

Andrea said...

Once again, my heart is full reading your words. I sit here today growing our miracle baby at 22 wonderful weeks and each time I visit your "Life Portrait" I'm challenged and encouraged to be the best Mama to this baby that I can possibly be.

You've taught us so much about Life, Love and Challenges...and Dude, (spoken in true Kelle fashion) that is wonderful!

Thank you again for sharing your Life Portrait and 2 very special little girls that always make my heart sing :)

I raise my glas to you! Happy New Year!!!

Farmgirl Paints said...

gorgeous...all of it. here's to a wonderfully blessed 2011. it's going to be a great year. love ya girlie.

the Turquoise Iris said...

This is my first comment to you but I can not click away without telling you my thoughts on your posts. You are the most beautiful person and I truly look forward to reading your posts and looking at your pics. Your words bring me to tears every other day. Thank you for sharing your gift with all the rest of us who strive what you have already accomplished.

Teisha said...

You have a serious way with words! Great post and the pictures are superb!

Kelly said...

Oh WOW these pictures are amazing! Great job to Kaitie!

Tiffanie said...

Oops, meant for my comment on the previous post to be on this post, but either way you'll see it and know that I love all your beautiful posts.

Callie said...

Amen Kelle.

Enjoyed the honesty of your post. I love your pictures of you and your darlings.

I am so glad that I am not on this adventure alone and I know there are many amazingly different people out there riding the bike with me and ready and willing to help me when my chain falls off. Cuz you know we just put it back on and get up again.

Here's to 2011 and all of the potential that is holds!
Cheers!

leemeandthegirls said...

Happy birthday, Kelle! My 31st is in 8 days, and I can only hope it's as amazing a year for me as it was for you.

sara said...

Happy birthday! Love your blog :-)

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