Wednesday, August 31

We've been...

Looking adorable on our days at school

Waiting impatiently for sister to get home from school

Baking morning glory muffins

Ready to go in

And blueberry apple muffins

Helping mom make cookies

Wiping our dirty hands

Washing dishes

tying our shoes

Finally deciding on a pair of sunglasses

For a spirit day at school

Inventing new ways to keep tabs on the tv, video game and computer time around here

And our behavior
PS: I was going to post about our new little systems, but I don't want to bore any of you. So if you are curious how we're doing our thang, let me know and I'll post about it. It's been working fabulous!

We put our babies down for naps

ALL of them

Had surgery

Held a grudge

Had brother story time

The funniest thing has happened since Daughter started school. I've become a total homebody. I literally go NOWHERE except to take and pick her up, run mandatory errands and walk to the mailbox. The rest of the time I'm at home, but I feel busier than ever. I think I may be taking my homemaker role more seriously. Terrible I know, but man oh man, I was letting things slide. So now that we're all on a schedule everyday, it just seemed natural to organize and prioritize everything else too! Hubby is loving it because my gas bill in my car has dropped significantly. ;)

Thursday, August 25

The Big Reveal

When I was prego with Baby, I started seeing all these gender reveal parties everywhere. I LOVED the idea and wanted to do one so badly, but we weren't sure we were even going to find out the gender ourselves. 
Well, when I got pregnant with jelly bean, I KNEW I wanted to do a gender reveal. 

Just one little issue...
this was the year of simplicity for Hubby and I. And he ESPECIALLY did not want to spend a lot of time, effort or money on parties. 
So we compromised.
We decided to do the party,
but keep it simple, small and affordable.
So that meant hardly any extras,
no fluff,
just the basics.

And it turned out alright. 
None of our family could come, so we were a little disappointed to miss sharing our news with them,
but we were still happy to share with our friends that could come.
And I know that most parents choose not to find out before the party, and I thought that sounded so fun; for the guests to be able to share in that moment of first finding out.
However, I really, really wanted a girl.
I mean really.
So I didn't want to find out in front of everyone what I was having and chance showing any glimmer of disappointment. 
Hubby and I found out about three and a half weeks before the party.

We are good at keeping secrets.

I hardly took any pictures that day, it just didn't happen.

Here's the wording I came up with for the invitiation:

"We've got a secret
we can't wait to share.
Let your guess of the gender
be what you wear.
Blue be for boys,
Pink be for girls.
But your won't know our secret,
'til our secret's revealed!"

It was so fun to see what everyone thought we were having in all 

the blue and pink outfits.

We chose to keep the menu simple and sweet with just desserts, 

fruit and refreshments.

We did our reveal using fortune cookies. I thought it would be kinda

to just have one person find the lucky cookie. So I made a slip

with the announcement and slid it in one cookie.

YAY!! SO exciting!

We are so thrilled, BEYOND thrilled. 

And thank heavens, because Daughter would have it no other way. ;)

For favors, I decided to give everyone a little shaker of sugar and spice. :)

A little blury, but you get the idea

And here's the short clip from when Janet opened her cookie and made our announcement.

Thank you so much to everyone who could make it! It really meant a lot for us to share this exciting news with you all!

Rambles on a Thursday Afternoon

Hello dear readers of mine.
How is everyone today?

I hope everyone is feeling joyful and loved 
and if not, I am praying you feel that way soon!

Because you are!!

I am feeling pretty content right now.
I think contentment is one of my favorite feelings.
Being completely and utterly satisfied with what God
has given me and done for me.
It doesn't get much better than that.

In news around the house,
Daughter is still LOVing school,
Son is still really enjoying his time with just mom and brother
and Baby is well, just getting cuter every single day.
Tough crowd, huh?

Behavior has been pretty good also, which is encouraging.
Man those days of whining and complaining and fighting and refusing,
they are so draining aren't they?
I adapted a couple new discipline systems around here 
and they are going pretty well.
I'll try to post about those this week.
I think they're really helping.

I am officially taking over the money management around here.
Full time.
Up until now I have only managed small household finances:
groceries, personal family items, gas, etc.
We just decided that perhaps I should
go ahead and take over the whole deal.
Not because there was any issue with HUbby doing it,
but just to get me more involved in it 
and ease his burdens just a touch.
Just one less thing he needs to worry about.
So I'm excited, hoping that I can help and 
relieve a little stress,
but also nervous.
What if I mess up??
What if we go broke??
What if ...
oh jeez....
I'm so silly.
We'll be fine.
I can do it. ;)

I had a terrible dream last night.
It woke me and kept me up for two hours.
I was sick to my stomach.
I am going to share my dream
but I hope none of you read too deeply into this.
It's seriously awful.
And I don't want you all to think this
is a reflection of my innermost thoughts.
It is absolutely crazy.
And I can probably blame it on some crazy episode of
Desperate Housewives and Law and Order blended
in my sleeping brain.
I dreamt that Hubby and I thought, for some reason, that
there was someone that was going to
take our kids and there was nothing
we could do physically or legally to get them back.
So to prevent this atrocity,
we did the unthinkable.
We killed our kids in their sleep and made it look like an accident.
It was so awful.
I never saw them, the kids,
in the dream.
I just somehow knew that's what we were doing.
I woke up and could hardly breathe
(which we all know is nothing new, but it wasn't the wheezing,
it was like gasping for air or almost hyperventilating).
I almost woke Hubby up,
but he's usually VERY incoherent in the middle of the night.
So I checked on all the kids,
and then sat with a cup of water,
in my bed and prayed.
For a long time.
And every time I would stop praying,
close my eyes,
and try to sleep again,
the images of flames would return,
We burned our house down in my dream.
Then I would snap back up and pray again.
All three kids woke up during this time
when I was awake in bed.
They woke up at different times,
one had growing pains,
one got hot,
one wanted a drink.
And I almost felt relieved that they woke,
that they needed me to come and tend to them,
make them comfortable and sleep again.
Ugh...what a sick dream.
I wonder what it means?
Do you believe in that?
Deep meanings of dreams?
I hope it means nothing.
I hope it's just an awful mash-up of Desperate Housewives and Law and Order.
It's got to be.
Mixed with a little pregnancy hormones, right?
Speaking of pregnancy, I'll be posting the gender reveal tonight.
Have a fabulous afternoon! 
Talk to you all soon!!

Tuesday, August 23

The Way I See it...

There are two kinds of people in this world.

People like me.
And people like Hubby.
And if there are other kinds of people, well, they just have missed my radar.

You see, I, by true definition, am a morning person.
Hubby, is not.

And that's it, those are the two types of people.

I wake up in the morning and nine times out of ten, swing my feet to the floor, say a little prayer and head downstairs. No time is wasted, I start coffee, breakfast, emails, blogging, reading, getting ready for the day, laundry...all of it within 15 minutes of waking up. Even on the mornings when I am dragging, as in I went to bed too late and some little human woke me up around five in the morning, I still manage to get it together fairly quickly. I usually have music playing and am declaring a dance party by 7:15 am.

I can be up and out of the house early and prefer first thing in the morning appointments and play dates. Dr. appointment at 8:30? No problem. Lab work at 7? You got it. Play date at 9? Perfect. Grocery shopping at 8? I'm there. Garage sale at 6:30? Done.

It's just the way I'm wired. I always have been. When I was a kid, I never slept in. I had no problem getting up and at the bus stop on my own by 6:30 around age ten. I usually only woke my family to wave goodbye. I've always had an alarm but rarely needed it.

In college, I'd drive 45 minutes to school to be at class by 7am, but I'd meet a friend at Starbucks around 5:30 every morning just to start our day off. I worked at a coffee shop for a few years and working at 4am was my favorite shift. I loved waking up, watching the sunrise, feeling the dew as it was falling, the bustle of early morning commuters. I loved all of it.

The first time I slept in past ten was when I was prego with Daughter. I slept one day until noon, you know that ridiculous tired feeling you get when you're pregnant? And I was shocked when I woke up and saw the time!

The downside of all this morning business is that by 7:00 at night, I am frequently checking the clock and yawning, by 8:00 pm, I could very well fall asleep with no issue and by 9:30or 10:00 pm, I am out cold, drooling on the couch.

But it works for me. And for my kids, who are also, apparently, morning people.

Then there's Hubby. He is absolutely NOT a morning person. When his alarm goes off on the days he works early, he will usually keep sleeping. Through the alarm. I usually have to shake him or slap his face or arms to get him to turn it off before it wakes up the kids. Then he'll reach a heavy hand over to his night table, usually knocking over a water bottle or cup on his way, slam his hand down on the table and with eyes still closed, keeping slamming the table until he finds his phone (picture the whack-a-mole game at Chuck E Cheese). Once he finally grabs his phone, he swings his heavy hand with said phone back over to the bed and tries to look at it. Emphasis on "tries." His hand is actually TOUCHING the button that turns off the alarm and even touching the snooze button (both of which would silence the glaringly loud and obnoxious sound ringing from the phone speaker), but having a hard time actually pressing either button.
I am generally next to him, hissing at him to touch the damn button or give it to me immediately! I have come to the conclusion that he actually cannot hear me at this point and is just struggling to open his eyes and comprehend what is going on. He finally slides open the phone (unnecessary to turn off alarm), goes to the menu screen, tools screen, alarm screen, and then clicks the option off, usually after one or two of our young children are awakened by the shrill ringing throughout the house. And I wish I were exaggerating. One time I happened to be outside early in the morning watching the sunrise when I heard his alarm going off. Outside. I heard it outside. I'm sure he wakes my neighbors every morning as well.

Now that the alarm is officially turned off, he will do one of two things. Ask me to wake him up at a specific time (usually 30 minutes or so later) or he will sit up on the edge of the bed and stare at his dresser for ten or fifteen minutes. Sometimes he will actually fumble through his phone menus again and reset his alarm for another thirty minutes and then the whole thing happens all over again (except the rest of the family is up by now, eating pancakes and reading the paper). Other times he will just sit a while longer, staring at the dresser. I used to ask if he were okay. He never answered with anything short of a caveman type grunt, so I stopped asking.

After he finally decides to get OUT of bed, he stands up and walks with a drunk/very old man stumble over to the sink, where he leans against the counter, turns on the water (just for kicks) and stares for quite some time. What does he stare at, I'm not really sure, actually. The sink, the mirror, his eyes could be closed even. It's all in the mystery of the morning, really.

Once he's dressed, he makes his way down stairs, still stumbling, and sits himself down in his recliner. He folds his arms, scoots down in the cushions a little and closes his eyes. Sometimes he'll mumble a little to inquire about coffee being ready or not, and then it's time for a tiny morning snooze. I usually let the dogs in to come greet him (read wake him up) and bring him a cup of coffee. This whole recliner things lasts about twenty minutes until he's finally awake. And when I say that I mean it. He is finally awake and up and able to speak. It's almost like a rebirth, or a coming of age, every morning. A miraculous moment, when all the senses align, all the brain functioning returns, all the motor skills start to get going.

And usually by this point in the day, the kids and I are ready for a nap. ;)

However Hubby is at his best in the evening, awake, vibrant, talkative and generally annoyed that I cannot stay awake past sunset. It's an interesting match.

And that's just the way I see it.
So what kind of person are you? Morning or night?

Gifts 769-786

Watching Daughter dance
Her eyes sparkling on stage
Blueberry green tea
the crazy hairs I can't get to stay where they belong
Discussing books with friends
Baby room ideas
Baby names
Cheeks like the skin on a peach
coloring pictures with daughter
reading story after story with boys
not starting my day off with prayer and realizing the difference it makes
daughter learning to read
teaching bunny ears
asking God for help through a rough day
Resting, knowing He's got me ;)
a sky, scattered with beautiful and tiny white clouds
a sunset to watch in traffic
letting go of frustrations

Saturday, August 20

Dear Daughter...

Dear Daughter,

Daddy just left to go pick you up from your first day of Kindergarten. My stomach is swirling with butterflies; we've been checking the clock every ten minutes for the last hour and a half, waiting to go pick you up and see how your first big day went!

A few days ago, you went to a party at your friend's house. It was a Kindergarten party for all your friends just starting Kindergarten. Kati sent you home with a letter and envelope for me to write you a letter that you will open when you are graduating. Well, Son was kind enough to tear up the envelope in a little fit of rage, so I decided to write your letter here and then I'll print it up and seal it for later.

Last night when I tucked you in, I was closing the door and turning out the lights and said one last "I love you." You said in the sweetest and most sincere voice "Mommy, I love you SO much." I laughed and thanked you and said I loved you SO much also. And you said "No, I love you SO much because you hold me, and you teach me things and you are always my friend." I teared back a little and thanked you for saying such wonderful things. Then you said "I'm really going to miss you when I'm at Kindergarten tomorrow." I told you that I would miss you too, but I would be okay because I knew that you were going to be having so much fun learning, making friends and having a great time.

Where did the time go?? I remember the day I brought you home, but better than that, I remember little days here and there. Days that have no significance on the calendar, Just days when I walked with you and Rylie (our dog) to the park. Days when I sat on the couch and watched you sleep in my arms for hours. The day when you fell down the slide for the first time. I really truly remember these days, what you wore, the weather, everything. I can still smell your hair, see your eyes crinkle from your huge cheeks smiling. I can still feel your warm little head sleeping on my chest, still see you running in that toddler way you ran, your tiny auburn curls bouncing. I still hear your tiny, squeaky voice when you talk to me. And now I have etched a new memory: watching you go off to Kindergarten.
When I dropped you off at the gate today, you immediately spotted your teacher and gave her a big hug. Then I watched as you looked around, obviously confused, maybe a little overwhelmed, wondering where to go and what to do. I wanted so bad to call out and tell you last instructions, but I knew you knew. I knew I had to let you go and learn and try and accomplish these things on your own. To feel that sense of pride that you can and DID in fact do this, take this big step.

I was pretty shaken as I walked to the car...holding back tears with big, deep breaths. I prayed fervently that Jesus would be with you, or rather that you would KNOW and remember that He was with you. When you arrived home, you strolled right by me, the biggest grin on your face and a whole new aura about you. You seemed older. Bigger. More mature. More confident. It was so wonderful to see you so proud of yourself and spilling every little detail to your brother, Daddy and I.

I couldn't help but think of next year, and then middle school and then high school and beyond. I could help but pray for your heart and mind and most of all soul.

I hope and pray that we have given you a home and a family to be proud of and confident in. I pray that I have showed you God's love and that you will show those around you His grace and love as well.

I pray that you would be patient and understanding, always remembering that we do not know what another person is feeling and thinking. That our only job in this whole world is to love them and show them Love.

I pray that you would be earnest and work hard, knowing that God gave you skills, talents and passions so that you would be a good servant for Him. I pray that you remember when you hate a task or job, that you are not doing work for another person or even yourself, but for your Maker. And that you will not always see how it glorifies Him, but if you are faithful and earnest in your work, He WILL receive HIS glory.

I pray that you realize that you alone are not wise and every decision is a difficult one when you do not seek Jesus' guidance and wisdom. I pray that you are eager and not prideful, always begging for His wisdom.

I pray that you smile and laugh often, knowing that each breath you take, every tree you sit beside, every emotion you feel, every breeze that blows, every stormy day and dark night, every person you pass is a gift. A gift to show you of His love, a gift given freely, that did not have to be given. A gift to fill your heart, your spirit with everlasting and true joy.

I pray that you wake up each morning, desperate to see through Jesus' eyes, love with Jesus' love and mourn over the things that make Jesus mourn.

I pray that you love, that you find love and that you show love.

I love you so much Daughter,
I am so proud of you.
I am so thankful that God has blessed me with you and trusted me to take care of you for this short time we have.

Always yours,

One last summer evening...

Just a week or so before school started we enjoyed one last late summer afternoon/evening with friends running in the sprinklers. Those are things I hope my kids recall from their childhood.

Friday, August 19


Cinnamon apple pancakes and' fave!

Baby requested a bowl of just powdered sugar, please. ;)

I don't make meals at my home with my children't "likes" in mind. I make meals that are healthy, varied and hopefully tasty. Obviously I don't purposely CHOOSE things I know they hate, but I figure if I always serve their favorites, they'll never try anything and never discover new flavors. So this meal was just that, a whole wheat pasta with roasted squash, onions and bell pepper, tossed with raw, chopped tomatoes, basil and garlic in olive oil and then sprinkled with feta. Son was gone for this meal, but Daughter and Baby were with me (who are both somewhat picky) and they lost their MINDS for this dish, much to my dismay. I was FULLY prepared for whining and complaining and kids going to bed on the hungry side.

Daughter loved serving herself and helped herself to seconds even!

Being so silly

Dinner: Success ;)

A little post dinner story time


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