Monday, May 31, 2010

Happy Memorial Day!

Happy Memorial Day!!!

We enjoyed a beautiful day here celebrating and remembering our country's heroes. We went to two parades, one in the morning and one the evening. We spent the afternoon cooking out with family and playing in the warm wonderful weather. Okay, well the kids played in the warm wonderful weather... I lounged on the couch for a while regretting eating so much food!

We also took a little time and visited one of Seth's grandfather's graves. Both Seth and I have a honorable heritage in that both of his and both of my grandfathers served our country in times of war. Both of Seth's grandfathers and one of mine served in World War II and my other grandfather served in the Korean conflict. All four were real men. All four lived honorable lives and all four have passed away. I think of their generation with so much respect. They were really just teenagers when they began to carry the burdens of responsibility... in war, in providing for their families, of farming, of being faithful husbands and diligent fathers. They did not shirk from duty or waste their time and lives on things of no consequence. Their lives mattered. I wish America was still full of such men.

The girls thoroughly enjoyed the day, particularly the parades.

There were lots of big firetrucks:

And fancy cool cars:

And fabulous head wear:
And there happened to be two adorable little girls:

Eden literally clapped the entire time. She is really really good a clapping. ;)

Maddie was intently watching for the next handful of candy to be tossed her direction.

But not even candy could distract Eden from her clapping....

Hope you all enjoyed this holiday as well! I'm thankful to the Lord for our great nation. The land of the free and the home of the brave!!!


Friday, May 28, 2010

Neti Pot ~ Free Offer!

Free Neti Pot

I took advantage of this offer a few weeks ago... I THINK it's still valid. I went through the process (except for actually submitting) to check and it worked for me.

I had heard of Neti Pots and had been tempted to pick one up and try it. But I'm not big on spending money on something until I know for sure if it works! A totally free offer (free shipping too!) was fabulous!

Our whole family has a cold this week. This may be the weirdest pregnancy symptom anyone has ever complained about, but when I am pregnant, I seem to produce snot by the bucket load. That's wonderful information to share with the world, isn't it? ;) I think its a sign that I am getting old that I have no problem sharing this with everyone....

Anyway, when you add the fact that I am very limited in what medicines I can take to the Niagara Falls that is my nose whenever I have a cold while pregnant, I was all too ready to try this Neti Pot. Its drug free and basically just flushes out the sinus cavity with a saline solution. Some people with allergies use a Neti Pot regularly to help with their symptoms.

Using the Neti Pot felt weird. Not painful but weird. When I was done, I wondered if this was a bad idea because I was left with that somewhat uncomfortable feeling that you have after swimming under water if you didn't plug your nose. But after about 30 to 45 minutes, I realized that annoying sensation was gone and my sinuses were totally clear. I was breathing totally free of congestion and my nose was not running.

I am officially a fan of the Neti Pot! Just had to share.... =)


Thursday, May 27, 2010

Baby Girl Ultrasound Pictures

Here she is! I know its small but you're looking at (clockwise) a hand, a straight on face shot, a foot and a profile shot.

We saw her yawning (cute!) and bouncing all around. The tech kept commenting on how active she is, which relieved me. I have felt hardly any movement whatsoever. With previous babies, I was definitely feeling movement all throughout the day by this point. I actually started feeling Maddie at 14 weeks, which is apparently pretty early. So I was getting a little concerned by the lack of activity I was feeling, but we learned today that the placenta is "in front", acting as a shock absorber for fetal movement. Good to know!

Everything looked just as it should. She is a whole 11 ounces! How it is that I have gained... well never mind about that... it's more than 11 ounces though! =) Really, it is sort of weird how I gain pregnancy weight. I gained a solid 8-9 pounds before I even knew I was pregnant. We had taken Maddie and Eden to the museum and I got on the scale to see what I would weigh on Mars. Before finding that out, the machine graciously told me what I weigh on Earth. How thoughtful of it... :/ Seth saw what the number was and we both looked at each other and shrugged. Too many french fries? A few days later.... I knew the real reason! But since that first month, I have only gained 3 pounds. One per month. I am just rebelling against those charts that tell you what to gain and when!

We took Maddie with us, which she was both excited about and also disappointed about not staying home to play with Nana. She was very good while we waited and is becoming such a friendly little person. The ultra sound tech was very pleased to have Maddie in the room with us, especially since that same tech had performed several ultra sounds for us when Maddie was the baby in the womb!

Maddie had a million questions about... um... everything. Why are the lights out? Why is Mommy lying down? Why is the baby gray? Seth and her chatted the whole time while I kept my eyes on the screen. As far as the baby's appearance, Maddie thought she had a big head. She momentarily thought that the baby must be a boy since it had such short hair, but then we reminded her of all the newborn baby girls we've known who also had short hair. Even SHE once had short hair. Gasp! he he he

When we got home, Maddie was given the privilege of telling Nana if she had a new brother or a new sister.

A sister.

As far as names... I am still undecided about whether I want to share our choice... when we have one. Which we don't. Seth did not want to even discuss it until this ultra sound (and knowing the gender). So now begins the 5 month long badgering process. He tends to not like my suggestions (at least the first several times I mention them) but he does not want to give his own suggestions. I've learned though that if I start off with really unique names (I was going for "Dallas" for a little while LOL) then something like "Eden Grace" sounds much more normal and acceptable to him. =) So give me your suggestions of totally out there names for me to start with... then in a little while when I say what I really would like, they will sound great to him!

I'm really considering keeping the final two picks a secret until after she is born. I think I'm going to need to see this baby before knowing if she is a Dallas or a LaFawnda. ;)


Its...... a ...........

We are just returning home from our ultra sound and....






Yup. A 3rd princess. But I'm still the Queen. ;) And Seth still reigns as King.

The ultra sound tech didn't spend a while lot of time in that "region" but as she passed through a few times, I looked for myself and I think it looked like a girl as well.

Poor Seth. There must be a support group for him somewhere!


Monday, May 24, 2010

Cast your vote!

On Thursday the 27th, we have an ultra sound scheduled!! We hope to discover our little peanut's gender so.....

Place your vote on the sidebar!

This is such fun for me!! Seth and I usually have a little wager between us as we prepare for the big 18- 20 wk. ultrasound concerning our guesses for gender but neither one of us can commit to a choice! ☺ Part of me is convinced its a girl, while part of me thinks it really could be a boy.

One thing is for sure: If its not a girl, it will be a boy.

Is it any wonder that I must blog? How would the world get along without my deep intellect.

So if you need more detail to calculate your opinions, here are some tid bits of info related to old wives tales about detecting the baby's sex, just for fun:

I'm carrying high and round. Girl?

I have no real cravings... just food. Every 2 hours. If there is any food that always sounds good to me, its salad. So that is a toss up!

I feel the best I ever have while pregnant. Boy?

My skin is super duper dry.... some say it means its a boy.

I like to sleep on my right side, so that supposedly means a girl.

According to a Mayan belief, if you take the mommy's age and the year of conception and add them together, if the result is an even number, it is a girl. If it is odd, its a boy. If that is the case, its a girl.

Baby's heart rate is in the 130s so I think that means boy, right?

My skin is pretty clear so... boy.

So if you actually put any stock in these silly old wives tales, you must be quite torn in your decision right now! And NO, it is not twin boy and girl! Despite what my pesky brother in law insists, there is only one babe in this bump.

I will be sure to let you all know, presuming Baby cooperates! Maddie is going to come along with us to the appointment and she is so excited!!

Maybe soon you can expect a poll about names... =)


Saturday, May 22, 2010

Warm days

We've been so blessed with some very warm weather the past few days. I have LOVED IT!!!! And so have the kids....

Here are our girls playing in the "pool" with a few of their cousins:
Run run run to the pool...

... jump in...

...jump out...

... and repeat!


...with a few squeals in between...


Thursday, May 20, 2010

Blessings of a Budget

For as long as I have known Seth... which is about 10 yrs now..., he has always been a person who lives on a budget. When the rest us dumb college kids paid our school bill (hopefully) and blew the rest, Seth was careful with every penny.

When we first married, I didn't always appreciate his frugal nature. But as time went on, I realized that I really like having lights that go on when I flip the switch. I really like not having bill collectors call me. I really like knowing that we could be approved for loans should we need one. I really like the freedom and lack of stress that comes with no debt looming over us.

So somewhere in the first year or two of married bliss, I embarrassed the budget way of life. Not that I was a crazy extravagant spender before hand... as a single girl, I had been "paying my own way" since age 16 and did an okay job. But I never knew exactly how much was in my checking account (just a ball park figure) and I never stuck to a rigid budget. Given the opportunity, I would impulse buy. Thankfully, Seth converted me before I had time to develop any really nasty spending habits.

In the past several weeks, however, we have been knee deep in home remodel and moving and those made from scratch dinners I usually prepared were impossible. Even since moving in 3 weeks ago, we have not had a functioning kitchen so most of my grocery shopping has been done through a fast food drive through window. Even the convenience foods at the store cost more than I typically spent on a dinner and definitely did not taste as good! So what happens when you add double food costs and extra house hold expenses that come with moving (I'm sure the neighbors really appreciate the curtains we finally put up!).... you get a budget that has been blown to Smithereens! (I am not sure where exactly "Smithereens" is...?)

So this week, with our kitchen now a few dollops of putty and a few strokes of paint away from being totally done, I am committed to getting back on the budget band wagon.

I. will. not. spend. more. than. I. have. been. allotted.

Its hard. The habit of just buying whatever "I need" has already taken root. Isn't is amazing how quickly bad habits form? I'm always amazed by how fast we as people form terrible habits but a new good habit can be such a struggle to learn!

I've been reminding myself of the blessing of sticking to a budget. I need to remind myself of these blessings a lot because its only Thursday, I'm all out of money, and I don't get another "allowance" until Monday. Its gonna be a long weekend, driving by all the garage sales filled with treasures, and past McDonalds and its refreshing iced coffee calling to me as I blink away the tears.

So I may be a mite over dramatic but still... lets review some of the blessings of a budget:

• Growing in self control. Always a good thing. "Just Say NO!" was the anti-drug slogan when I was kid. But I think most us like to live by "Just do it!" as Nike would suggest! ;)

Allowing God to provide in special ways. When we always take matters into our own hands and just go purchase what we want or even need, we don't give God an opportunity to provide for us in a way that doesn't compromise our good judgement... that judgement we had when we set up a budget but so quickly loose when faced with a temptation to spend.

A year and a half ago, my husband went out of town for one week. He left me with my weekly money, and I had planned to eat as frugally as possible (not hard when its just me and the girls) and leave some to do special fun things with the girls to make our week more bearable without Daddy around. Seth left on a Sunday afternoon, after church. He hugged and kissed us goodbye and then drove off.

Maddie started sobbing right away. She was so sad to see Daddy go. She was soon distracted by her cousins all playing and riding their bikes. She was still in her dress shoes because we had not yet bought her sneakers. She had out grown hers and since it was just the beginning of Spring, she was getting along fine in her boots. This day happened to be the first good day to play outside of the year.

I really felt badly that she didn't have any sneakers to play outside with her cousins in. I did not want to spend a lot of our week's money and be forced to skip one of the activities I had planned. I decided I would check the nearby dollar store on the off chance that I would find something suitable that didn't cost a lot. I knew that playing outside would be the most fun activity in Maddie's opinion.

I was praying as I drove to the store and walked in side. I asked where the children's shoes were and headed to the back corner. The shelves where the clerk had sent me were totally emptied... except one pair of white and purple sneakers. Initially, I thought They probably won't be her size... but then I thought, Why wouldn't they be? Don't you think God has be listening to you pray?

I picked up the shoes and turned them over to see the size. They were just what she needed!!! WOW! Then I found the price tag. I was disappointed to see $8. That probably sounds really cheap to everyone, and it is... but I knew that WalMart occasionally had bins of sneakers for $4, and I had been hoping to get a $4 pair of sneakers.

I debated for only a second but I knew Maddie was stuck inside in her dress shoes instead of playing outdoors with her cousins. Oh well, I though. Maybe we won't go to Children's Museum. I took the not-so-cute but perfect size shoes up to the clerk. While I was waiting in line, I laced them up so that Maddie could get out and play the minute I returned. When the clerk scanned to price tag, the screen said $0.01 I didn't think anything of that, since obviously their machine was broken. Then the lady said "One penny." I smiled and thought she was joking. She held out her hand for my one penny.

"That can not be right. Are you sure?" I said.

"Yes, it's right. They are the last ones and clearanced out. One penny, please."

"God is so good to me!!" I said, knowing that she may think I was a wacko. She seemed to actually agree rather than think I was strange.

I took those shoes back to Maddie and told her the story of the "shoes that God gave her". We have those worn shoes packed away for safe keeping in our basement.

A budget forces us to prioritize. There have been innumerable times when I did not have enough funds to make a purchase, but left the store planing to return the next week to buy the item, only to forget totally about it. Obviously, it wasn't so important after all! I'm so glad I don't have the extra clutter that those things would have ended up being!

Creative thinking. Any homemaker trying to make the most of her home knows that when the money runs out, that is when our creative juices get flowing! How can we reuse, fix up and improvise instead of just buying what you need or want?

As a teenager, I spent a bunch of time with my best friend, Holly and her mom, who is the Queen of Fun! It was like her whole occupation in life was to spend her days doing fun things with us girls... and then making us something good to eat! At least that is how it felt to me. I remember her saying "Okay girls, I've got 4 bucks! What are we gonna do?" We'd put $1.50 in the gas tank and then go to the thrift store, or make crafts or buy fabric to sew something, or drive to the apple orchards, or dress up in ridiculous outfits and take pictures, or dress up in even more ridiculous outfits and video tape ourselves acting out scenes from "White Christmas" or "Fiddler on the Roof", or a create a themed dinner party using items found around the house, or .... we made a million memories and spent pennies doing it.

Proper perspective for our children I genuinely feel bad for kids who own everything they want. I know from experience that when I earned things... whether it was clothes, a trip to camp or youth conference, or even simple toothpaste, I appreciated them so much more. I remember really wishing for cool toothpaste as a kid and young teen. But when I had my first job and went WalMart to buy toiletries for myself with my own money, that $1 tube of generic stuff looked just fine! We are still a few years from being able to teach our little ones about budgeting, but Maddie is saving in her piggy bank already. She thinks she has enough to buy her Daddy a motorcycle, but unless its a match box version, she is mistaken!

Demonstrating contentment We can say we are content all we want. But our actions will always speak louder than our words. A fat credit card bill shows that we truly are not content. Not content with what our husbands can provide. Not content with what the Lord has given us.

A chance to bless others. If you really want to have some fun, sit down with your spouse and plan out how to you are going to bless other people with the money you will save by adhering to your budget. It is even more fun than garage saling and drinking iced coffees!

Well, I personally needed to make this list! Budgeting is a blessing, truly. Can any of you think of more blessings to add to the list? (Comment, people, comment! Hint hint!☺)


Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Scripture Prints

I am so excited to pass along this link to my friend Amy's Scripture Prints.

This is a collection of amazing photographs, with encouraging King James Version Bible verses on each print. Amy is not a professional photographer by trade... she is a wife and mommy with a great talent for photography. I truly feel that Amy is meeting a need with this new venture. Placing Scripture around my home is so important to me and really lifts my spirit. I have often bemoaned how difficult it is to find Scripture decor for my home that is KJV. Even if I can find something lovely with a KJV verse on it, it is almost always very expensive.

Take a moment to check the Scripture Prints out; it's well worth your time even if you have no intention to purchase one. Each one is beautiful and inspiring, and in my opinion, there is something to complement any decorating theme. My only trouble has been narrowing down which ones I want!


Friday, May 14, 2010

Asthma Update

Just wanted to let you all know that Maddie is doing a lot better the past few days concerning her asthma. I'm so thankful... there were a few times over last weekend when I wondered if she needed to go to the E.R. I am one of those moms who never knows when exactly a situation warrants a visit to the E.R., or a call to the doctor, especially after hours. I suppose its because of the time we took Maddie to E.R. resulted in 4 hrs. of waiting and receiving no care for our crying wheezing 2 yr. old. Its not an experience I ever wish to repeat! That was her first attack so I think if she ever needed to go again, we (and hopefully the doctors) would more quickly know what course to take.

Anyway, I decided to try some different remedies because clearly what we had been doing was not cutting it. Firstly, Seth and I both agreed that albuterol was not helping. Even though albuterol is supposed to be the rescue medicine and pulmicort is intended for daily use (which she does get), we were actually seeing more success with just extra pulmicort doses throughout the day, especially before bedtime. Our doctor had given us the go ahead to mix and match the two medicines according to what we saw the most improvement with, and since albuterol is prone to some side effects, albeit minor, we just won't use it anymore.

Secondly, I have been wanting to explore natural remedies for asthma, and all our families health concerns. So I purchased some vitamin D in liquid form to add to Maddie and Eden's juice. About 4 drops is a serving size so the girls do not even know its there. I have no doubt that they lack Vitamin D since most people do, and since it is still not warm enough to play outside very much. (Although today is a wonderful 70 degrees for the first times is weeks!) I also read that omega 3's are very helpful with astham sufferers so I am making an effort to incorporate foods rich in omega 3's into our diets. Even if I can not definitively say it is helping with the asthma, it can't hurt!

I also purchased a small bottle of eucalyptus oil. I've become interested in essential oils for healing and cleaning purposes. Soon, I plan to order a starter set from Beeyoutiful, where they have better prices even including shipping, but for now I started with one bottle from our local natural foods store. I personally love the smell of eucalyptus. I remember my mom hanging branches of dried eucalyptus in our shower. It was the most invigorating scent to wake up to! The steam from the shower seemed to make the dried branch come alive. When my mom finally stopped arranging flowers as her hobby, I missed those branches hanging in the shower more than I missed all the dried flower arrangements she used to always be making!

I was unsure about actually using the oil. I tried rubbing it on Maddie's chest, but she complained that it irritated her eyes. It is rather strong when it directly out of the bottle. I then followed another idea I read online, and put a few drops on a paper towel and placed in right inside her pillow case while she was sleeping so she could breathe it in overnight, while her eyes were closed. This was also not successful because I noticed that she scooted her little sleeping self all the way to the other side of the bed. I guess it was still too strong. The best method has been to put a few drops in the humidifier which is on every night, and when she naps. This created a really enjoyable refreshing scent without being too overpowering. Seth is particularly sensitive to strong smells so I know I will need to be careful with my essential oils as I experiment with them. I, even while pregnant, do not have a strong sense of smell. I am always drawn to strong perfumes because I just don't even catch the fragrance of the more gentle scents. I probably walk around offensive to the world without even knowing it! ;) Actually, Seth would tell me, no doubt about that!

The eucalyptus oil is intended to clear nasal and chest congestion and open inflamed bronchial tubes. I read somewhere that it decreases production of mucus in the chest as well, which Maddie has a real problem with when her asthma is at its worst. Aside from those benefits, it is a natural germ and mite killer. So I like that aspect since humidifiers can be breeding grounds for nasty little boogers. I plan on never washing the humidifier again... just dumping a bunch of oil in it. Just kidding. ☺ Some people add eucalyptus oil to their bedding when putting it through the wash to kill bed bugs.

Personally, I have become a big fan of adding white vinegar to most of my laundry to kill stubborn urine smells from the girls' bedding and PJ's. I've noticed that when I add vinegar to the wash while washing Seth's dress shirts, his black shirts attract less lint. No more walking around all Sunday morning rolling the lint contraption on himself! ;) And I (nor Seth) detect a vinegar smell to it when it is finished.

Thank you for those who have been praying for Maddie. I am hoping that if we continue to be diligent about vitamins, and the oil enhanced humidifier, along with her daily pulmicort, I won't need to add steroids to her regiment. We'll see how she does in the next few weeks and months.


Thursday, May 13, 2010

Making hair bows!

I decided to try my hand at making hair bows for my girls! And ya know what I found out? Its really fun, and after a few trial runs, pretty easy!

Here's what I have finished so far:

For these classic looking bows, I followed these instructions.
(Just a quick disclaimer about the instruction links I attach to posts like this: I often only read that particular page so I'm not endorsing the entire site. Venture off the linked page at your own risk... though I think this particular site I am linking to right here is strictly hair bow ideas... FUN!)

I used floral wire to secure the bows. Floral wire is such a versatile house hold item! I use it all the time, especially at Christmas for hanging decorations up or replacing lost ornament hooks. It's so cheap and one roll lasts a long long time. After twisting the wire in back and snipping off any extra, I hot glue it to an alligator clip (I found small ones at Walgreen's). Before hot gluing it to the clips, I "lined" the clips with ribbon... very easy to do. I didn't take a picture but you simply cut ribbon slightly longer than the clip, hot glue on top. Wrap the ends of the ribbon under and glue down for a more finished look. This is basically what I did. The clip doesn't show very much with bows this big so I wasn't too meticulous about it.

On the green satin bows above, I used a contrasting ribbon but for the yellow and white I just cut additional pieces of the same.
Its important to seal the ribbon after you cut it so that it doesn't fray. All that means is running the cut edge over a flame very fast. You need to be careful not to singe it, and different fabrics are more fragile than others, but a quick pass will take care of any possible fraying. Here are some instructions... I used a lit candle so that both my hands were free.

The second type of bows I tried were these fluffy organza bows. I loosely followed these instructions.

I was going for more a fun girlish look rather than the elegant ones on the link. Instead of decorating the middle of each flower with beads, I pinched the back of each flower after sewing all layers together to make the flower fluff up. I sewed the pinch in place. Make sense? Hmmm.... now I know why crafting sites post so many pictures!

Here is what one layer looks like all by its lonesome. It was a funky flower- ish shape, then the edges were singed over the candle. (This white organza was very delicate and couldn't tolerate much singing without turning into a wholly mess. The purple material in the flowers above was a lot more resilient and easier to work with. When I make more out of the material, I'm going to try singing the edges even more for extra curling effect.)

You simply stack 5 to 6 layers together, and sew threw. Glue to a lined clip.

I could easily become addicted to hair bow making! It was really fun, and they are much cheaper than buying them! Let me know if you try it yourself!!


Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Birthday Pictures

This is Eden on Sunday while family sang "Happy Birthday!" to her. You can tell how much she likes the attention, huh?! She is so different from Madison when it comes to people looking at her... Maddie, even at her 3rd birthday, was cowering into Daddy's shoulder as we sang. But Eden relishes being the center of the attention. When we go to story time at the book store, she often goes up onto the platform and sits next to the person reading and just smiles at the crowd. I'm very glad that she is so extroverted because with that hair of hers, she sure gets a lot of comments from strangers every single time we go out.

She has a tendency to stick her tongue out... I actually think she knows she cute and just hams it up! She certainly gives it a try when she's caught being naughty!

Speaking of being naughty, I've been half joking that the girls are on a mission to burn down our new house. In the past week, they have taken a red marker to the new white kitchen cabinets, taken a green crayon to the window sill in their bedroom, pour juice on the end table in the living to "clean it" and (this is really gross) Maddie striped Eden of all clothes and diaper, put her on the ottoman to go potty, then pour urine onto the brand new carpet. That one probably took a year or so off of my life span.

Then today, they truly proved that they are trying to burn down the house. Our kitchen in only about half done. We've been sort of camping out, thus I have two open boxes of kitchen stuff sitting in the dining room. Buried deep in the box was a box of matches. I found the girls hiding behind the drapes with their hands full of matches.

*sigh* Its a good thing they are so cute. And its a good thing they take naps! The house couldn't take it if they didn't!


Sunday, May 9, 2010

Happy Mother's Day!

This is my mom, who goes by "Bear". I know... it's different. Kinda makes Eden sound really normal and boring, huh? But my Mom is a unique person in more than just her name. She's funny and quick witted. She's also seemed to always believe in me. I remember once attempting something really hard and she said that if anyone could do it, I could. Don't we all need that unconditional confidence from our moms? I often think of that statement, said casually while we were driving in the car. As moms, we don't get to pick which words we say our children will remember most. How careful we must be to provide an over abundance of positive and loving encouragements in hopes that one of them will be seared into our children's memories instead of something negative.

To me, this picture, taken at my wedding, personifies my Mom. Doesn't every Mother of the Bride lug a lawn chair out of her trunk, park it in the front lawn of the church and take a smoke break while cracking up at something apparently quite hilarious? It was far from my favorite photo when I first received my wedding album.... but it has grown on me over the years. It really makes me laugh to even just think of it.
I love my mom and know that she loves me. Happy Mother's Day, Mom! ♥
My family surprised me this morning with some adorable works of art that the girls had made. I didn't take the time to post a picture, but imagine lots of glitter, glue and foam hearts, flowers and the words "Happy Mother's Day!" I loved them. My little girls also must have had more in the piggy banks than I realized because they bought me a sewing machine!! I am slightly suspicious that their Dad contributed to the fund. ☺ I'm eager to sew something... I just don't know what... or how. But that's all part of the fun!
We had a nice lunch out after church today. Nothing says "Happy Mother's Day" to me like steak kabobs. He he he. Seth, though not a mother if you didn't know, ate like it was all about him. He finished his entree, then finished half a chicken breast that my Mom couldn't finish, and then ate a half a chicken breast that I couldn't finish. The man is truly a phenomenon. He probably eats about 3,000 calories a day and tips the scales at 157 lbs.
After Seth ate every morsel left on our tables, we had a small birthday celebration for Eden at my in-laws house. She was lavished with some adorable outfits and some fabulous and ultra-girly toys. I do believe that she has more purses than I do!
This evening Maddie and I ended up coming home before church began due to Maddie's asthma. She's been having a very tough time this Spring. Usually, her asthma improves in the Spring and Smmer but it is getting worse this year. I would really like to avoid increasing her prescription medicine so I am looking into natural remedies. Please pray for wisdom as I try to learn and make decisions. Also please pray that God would heal her of this ailment.
Happy Mother's day everyone!

Friday, May 7, 2010

Happy Birthday, Eden Grace!!!

My little Strawberry Shortcake (who actually isn't short at all for her age) turns 2 years old today.

This overly cheesy grin was displayed while she opened her little gift from Mommy, Daddy and Madison.
And now for a walk down memory lane....
May 7, 2008 at 4:05 pm
6 lb.s 8 oz.s
20 inches long

Seth was thrilled by the fact that she was born in the daytime and not in the middle of the night like Maddie. I was thrilled to have her born. She was induced 3 wks. early due to some minor complications but I was one miserable woman for the entire last month. She was healthy and she was OUT. Who cares what time of day!!!?!!!
Her only "preemie behavior" was that she was excessively sleepy. I could NOT get her to wake up to eat AT ALL for 4 days. I ended up putting expressed milk in a medicine dopper and trickling it down her throat to get something in her. Obviously, things improved but it was bit stressful for a few days.

Maddie was amused by the moving baby doll when she noticed her but for the most part, she still was convinced that the world revolved around her. At 19 months. what else could be expected of her? ♥

Eden's hair has been red from day one, though the curls didn't show themselves until it grew past this duck feather stage.

She was a happy easy baby. She traveled with me to youth conferences and youth activities all summer long. She nursed in some very uncomfortable places! But she and I both enjoyed having the opportunity to sit and cuddle during all the preaching services. She was a perfect baby for take along trips... she was quiet and sleep fairly well at night.

Her first Christmas:

And thankfully, eventually, her hair did grow!!

The name "Eden" means "delightful" and it truly suits her well! We are so thankfully for our little sweet heart!


Monday, May 3, 2010

The danger of living near your in laws

It's not what you think.

This morning, as I do most mornings, I brought Eden into bed with me to cuddle her back to sleep. She tends to wake up at about 6am and if she stays up at that point, she is tired and cranky way too early in the day. So I try to put her back to bed until Maddie gets up, an hour or two later. Sometimes, I sneak out of bed once she is asleep, but this morning (and most of the time now that I'm a pregnant), I fell back asleep with her.

When I woke up again at about 7:30am, she wasn't in bed. I didn't hear the girls playing or talking so I made a quick tour through the house. I did not find them, but instead discovered that the front door was wide open. I stood at the door scanning around for them and calling their names but saw and heard nothing. I raced back to my bedroom for my phone, grabbing my husband's fleece on the way. I ran around the outside of the house but only found an indoor riding toy in the backyard. Even though it would be impossible for them to manage it, I looked inside the above ground pool to make sure they didn't some how climb inside. Thankfully, there was no evidence of them in the pool.

I assumed that they had gone to my in-laws house, since we walk there often now that we live a few hundred feet away. As I made my way through my back yard and another house's yard, I called Seth. He was leading the opening service at the school so he didn't answer. I wanted to call the church phone but my phone hasn't had a screen display for some time now and I did not want to take the time to locate the church number. So I went ahead and called 911. I knew it was premature but I had no way of knowing how long they had been out wandering around. If I didn't find them at my in laws, they could have been ANYWHERE. I was crying while explaining to the dispatcher the situation. I was also calling the girls and running across the large backyards.

I kept thinking that even though I was positive they intended to go to grandma's house, would Eden keep up or even want to follow Maddie? They could have ended up going separate ways, and Eden would not be able to figure out where home or grandma's house was. They is a thickly overgrown field bordering the neighborhood and as I walked, I keep my eyes in the brush for movement. And then of course the possibility of someone snatching them was in the back of my mind.

Arriving at my in laws house, the door was opened a crack, and there was Maddie's face in the window. Eden was lounging on grandma's couch, with a spoon hanging out of her mouth. They had climbed onto the counter and retrieved the sugar bowl and were helping themselves by the spoonful.

I let the 911 operator know that I had found them and they were fine. I don't remember what exactly I said to Maddie but she said to me, "We just walked to Grandma's house, Mom. Why are you acting like this?"

Maddie was wearing her pajama t-shirt, a tiny pair of shorts she usually wears under skirts and shoes. Eden had on her pajamas and no shoes or socks. Both were as happy as larks and saw no reason for me to be upset.

I got out the defibrillator, restarted my heart, grabbed the little runaways and went home, hoping that the entire neighborhood was not seeing me in my pajamas. Maddie still not understand my wide eyes or near hysteria. She was thrilled with herself since she had watched for cars as she crossed the street. She had just wanted to go see grandma, after all. The fact that grandma wasn't even home didn't seem to matter to her.

And so, we now have high up locking devices on our doors leading to the outside. I've tried numerous times to explain to Maddie how bad and scary that was but she truly is not comprehending. Maybe I should just tie her to her bed after she goes to sleep...?