Friday, December 31, 2010

Happy New Year!

My 2010 could not have ended any better than it did! My sister gave birth to my sweet nephew, Nicholas, yesterday morning and it was just a complete shock to me. He was a week early and her babies are always late so I wasn't really expecting his arrival to come when it did. I'm thrilled for them... Even though I secretly hate her for her super quick and easy births. Lol. I have only gotten to love on Mr. Nicholas once but I'm sure that there are many more days where we can do that:-) It's always a joy to add another life into the family. We now have children on my side of the family that are 4, 3, 2, 1, 4 months, and then there's Nicholas. Soon we'll add Bailey and things will really get crazy!

I would have to say that my most lofty achievement in 2010 was that I truly learned to become more content at home. I love staying home with the girls but I was under the impression that days where we didn't go anywhere or do anything "fun" were dull. However, I have really worked on learning to not only stay home much more but to enjoy it. I am SUCH a people person so the process of learning to stay in and be happy about it was actually something I had to work at. I'm not saying that I'm where I need to be but improvement has definitely been made!

I'm not really into making resolutions per say but I'm very excited for 2011 because with the start of each new year, there is the potential to make it my best yet! I'm excited for March where we will be completing our family with the addition of Bailey. It should be a busy year but filled with lots of love and happiness.

Happy New Year, everyone! I hope that you all can make 2011 your best yet:-)

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Operation Christmas Clean Up

Oh my word, I'm going insane! I had the house in ship shape before Christmas and the girls' toys were organized so we knew where everything was. Then... We all received tons and tons and tons of gifts and now nothing has a place. I love Christmas but this is so overwhelming!

We have shelves in our toy room that help keep things off of the floor. Our initial plan was to put a lot of their new stuff on the top shelf and just pull it down as they requested. Yeah.. That didn't last long. I think we now have two things unopened. Lol. Luckily we purged ourselves of some old toys yesterday and filled a huge trash bag but it's still overwhelming to look at all their toys. Keeping the toy room clean seems impossible, too.

The lack of organization travels into just about every area of my house right now, to add to the stress. I'm in the midst of taking down the Christmas decorations so there are bins everywhere. It's hard to accomplish all that I want to in one day because I don't like to neglect the girls for the sake of the house. I also got some new kitchen items that I haven't found places for so that is also on my to-do list. Even the bathroom has been hit... I have been given some awesome new towels. I feel bad throwing away the old ones (even though they really did need replacing) so now even my linen closet is suffering the after math of Christmas.

I've never been so excited for trash and recycling days in all my life! Tomorrow the recycling will go out and I will be able to finally say goodbye to the many, many boxes that have been crowding our bin. The trash comes on Friday and I'm thinking of calling ahead and telling them to just bring a separate truck for our house. Lol.

My plan was to get our house back in the condition that I like it today but it seems like there was a new mess at every turn just from the girls playing. I'm really trying not to stress about it or let it get to me because it's just part of it. It's not as big of deal as I like to think it is and it WILL get done.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Housebound

I had some errands to run today and after getting home, I decided that I'm going to chose to be housebound for much of the winter. Holy cow! It was snowing and the wind chill factor was below zero. It's not a problem when it's me but when it requires putting 2 little girls into car seats and taking coats on and off in the freezing weather, it's just not worth it. Perhaps I'll just save all of my errands for John's days off when I have help.

Looking back, last year was a lot easier to deal with the winter because Adrienne was still in her infant seat. Sure, that thing is heavy but you just take it in and out of the car and she had a Bundle Me that was like her coat. It's also more difficult this year because Adrienne is more independent and wants to walk and get down in the snow. It's amazing to me how the girls don't seem nearly as bothered by the weather as I do.

New York has gorgeous seasons but man oh man, winter is TOUGH. I don't know how we endure it year after year and come through alive. It's just awful. As I always say though, it sure does make you appreciate the beautiful Spring weather when it finally gets here.. In sometimes April or even May.

I'm sure glad the girls got so many new activities for Christmas because we are going to be home a lot over the next couple of months. I've had it with the cold weather. I'm on strike.. Not that it helps! Lol

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas!!!!

Merry Christmas, everyone! I am currently sitting in my living room and blogging from my new Dell Net Book. This is amazing! It has opened a whole new world of convenience for me and now that I can have a computer downstairs with me, I think that I'll be blogging much more! Thank you, Mom and Dad!!

Our day could not have gone better. John and I decided to just get each other small stockings and not to waste money on lots of gifts. He was absolutely precious... He knew I had wanted the Charlie Brown piano music so he went online and found it for me. It was one of the most thoughtful gifts that I have received! I never specifically said "get me that" but he was obviously listening to me to know how much I wanted it! Also, he got me my favorite candies and gum and a gift card. It was actually really fun doing no gifts because it just pointed the focus more on the girls instead of ourselves. They were so precious and very gracious about all the gifts they received. It was hilarious because they got lots of little things but their BIG present was a play kitchen. Brooke had been asking for one for ages so we assembled it late last night and hid it under a blanket it in their toy room and shut the door. After all the presents were unwrapped Brooke said, "I didn't get my kitchen but I'm still thankful!" Lol. Then we cued her in and showed her the kitchen and she was floored. Ah, I just love watching Christmas through my children's eyes!

Our day has been really busy... After a quiet morning at home we went to John's grandma's house to exchange gifts with our extended family, then we went to my parents' house and did gifts there and had a wonderful lunch of ham and all the fixings. Last, but not least, we ended up at John's parents' house and had a whole other round of gifts and fun there.

Both girls are in bed and my house is kind of in disarray from the many, many, MANY gifts we got today. John is toying around with his new Play Station 3 that his family got him while I sit right next to him on the computer. We are so technologically savvy now. Lol. I'm sad to see the Christmas season come to a close but I seriously could not have asked for a more perfect day than today. And the best part?? John took tonight off:-) We're so lucky!

Merry Christmas! In the midst of it, I am MOST thankful for the Savior who came into this world has a tiny baby to deliver us all. Happy Birthday, Jesus!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Adjustments

I know it's silly and I still have three months until the baby is born but I am so anxious about how Adrienne will adjust. It actually consumes my mind. Brooke will do great because she will be helpful and involved in the baby but I guess I'm just worried about Adrienne getting lost in the shuffle.

Adrienne is the most laid back and content human being I have ever met. She doesn't really lose her cool and she's very, very quiet. She's pretty happy to share and even if someone takes something from her she gets over it very quickly and finds something new to play with. She's not really a "squeaky wheel" but trust me, we give her plenty of "grease." Because of her temperament, I often worry that her easy going nature will make it challenging to engage her when the baby gets here. It's hard to explain... If she was a more of a needy child I wouldn't worry about her letting her voice be heard. I think I will actually have to work harder to make special time for just her because isn't the kind of kid who really engages you... It's the other way around completely. Don't get me wrong, she's hilarious and precious and she does some of the craziest things but she's not an "in your face" kind of person.

I've said it before... I always feel bad for my quiet, laid back girls (more Adrienne than Brooke) because I am NOT like that. When I'm quiet, there's usually something wrong and I think I assume the same thing about them. Silly, I know. I definitely need to get used to the fact that not everybody has to be outgoing and bubbly all the time. Lol.

Another stupid thing that I worry about is "middle child syndrome." I don't know.. I've just heard a lot of people talk about that and I don't want to ever think of Adrienne being caught in that rut of being too small to be my big girl and too big to my baby. She's special for who she is and not what order she falls in our family. I'm sure she'll know that.

So yeah, these are the irrational thoughts that have been floating around in my mind. I'm like this, though... I get worked up over things that never come to pass. I'm sure that when Bailey arrives we'll figure out all these kinks. We always do!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Bookie's First Play!

We had our church Christmas program tonight and Brookie stood up with the kids to sing. Talk about precious! She had been practicing and practicing the songs and knew them all by heart so I was really proud of her. She and her cousin, Nathan, sang louder than all the big kids put together. I sat there watching the 2 of them and had to choke back the tears because I couldn't even believe how big they had gotten. Here are some pictures of our night...



Wednesday, December 15, 2010

One of Those Days

Today has been a challenging day to be a mommy. Brooke woke up on the wrong side of the bed and Adrienne is battling a cold so I had some fussy girls on my hands. We had just planned to stay in all day (which we do quite a bit) and somehow that made it worse. I love being home with them but when they're grumpy it's almost better to be out because you have other things to distract you from it all.

About lunchtime I was fried. The girls weren't terrors or anything... They just required a lot of extra parenting and reminders to behave. I made lunch and Adrienne got mad at me so she took her hands that were completely covered in refried beans and sour cream and rubbed them into her freshly washed hair. Then she threw her lunch off of her tray. I was almost to the point of tears at that point and it was one of those moments where I just had to walk away before getting too angry. The mess all over my tan carpets and clean baby didn't really help.

Once lunch was cleaned up (and the carpet.. and Adrienne's hair), I put both girls in their beds for nap time. I think Miss Brooke came downstairs about 3 times to say that she wasn't tired or that she needed something but I kept sending her back to bed. I dozed off for about 10 minutes and then heard both girls crying on and off and laughing upstairs. I was SO angry because Brooke must have gone in Adrienne's room and woken her up or something. I'm not really sure but the end result was an abbreviated nap time and an afternoon with grumpy, non-rested girls.

We had church tonight but I came home and put them right to bed. Believe me, we were all ready. Now that the house has been quiet and I've had some time to clear my head, I can hardly remember what was so bad about today and somehow am ready to start it all over again in the morning! Isn't it funny how motherhood is like this addiction... No matter how hard it gets or exhausted you are, it's that wonderful that you just keeping coming for more, despite getting very little appreciation. I surely hope that tomorrow is better but that's what it's all about- The ups and the downs.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Slight Change in Plans

I had my 24 week prenatal visit today and all went very well! The doctor found the baby's heartbeat right away and it's always a pleasure to hear that beautiful sound. I just love being pregnant!

My C-Section was scheduled for the 23rd of March but the doctor had to set it back a few days. The board at the hospital apparently won't let them schedule C-Section before 39 weeks anymore. I was only going to be shy of 39 weeks by one day but they still wouldn't let him do it so we'll have the baby on the 25th, which is a Friday. I'm really happy about it though for a couple of reasons... March 25th is the day that John asked me to be his girlfriend and then a year later, his wife, so it's a happy day! And also, I think it will be nice having it on a Friday because nobody from our family will have to miss work or anything to help us out with the girls over the weekend. It's also more convenient because we're scheduled for noon that day, as opposed to 8 on the 23rd, so we won't have to be there at 6. It will be great for Brooke and Adrienne to have a normal morning at home with us that day.

I'm getting really excited as the day approaches.. But mostly really nervous. I just keep focusing on meeting my new daughter and being able to see who she looks like. The miracle of life will never, ever get old to me!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

"It's Christmastime In The City"

We just got back from the city late last night. Despite it being FREEZING and snowing, we had a really great time! The only problem was that I wore high heels like the genius that I am so towards the end I was about to die. Other than that, it was a wonderful day.

We saw the tree at Rockafeller Plaza, FAO Schwartz, Times Square, Macy's, The Plaza Hotel, and the Trump Tower. I'm sure I'm leaving things out but we walked and walked and walked and saw lots and lots of things! I couldn't have asked for better girls, either.. They were so well behaved and cooperative the whole time.

Here are a few pictures of our day...



Saturday, December 4, 2010

The Past Week

I definitely jinxed myself with the last post about how the girls were getting better. As soon as I did that, I got sick and then John got sick. Uck! It was awful but hopefully it's completely over with now that it's gone through our whole family. The only good thing that came out of it was that I got to stay in bed ALL day on Wednesday. I felt horrible and was throwing up but I seriously don't remember the last "break" I had to do nothing for an entire day. The things we call relaxing when we're moms. Lol

Thursday was my birthday and I was thankful because that was one of the few days this week that wasn't tainted by sickness. John made my morning very special with a beautiful card and some awesome presents... 4 maternity shirts, a Cranberry Chutney Yankee Candle (My most favorite thing ever), awesome new cookie sheets (that I desperately needed), Christmas PJ's, and a new perfume, Pure by DKNY. He is such a thoughtful and loving husband and tries so hard to make my birthday special every year! He had worked the night before so he got some rest and my dad watched my kids and my sister's kids for a little while so we could have a girls lunch at Olive Garden. Isn't that so sweet? We had a great time! My mom met us, along with my brother's wife. Then, for dinner, we had a party at my parents' house with steak and twice baked potatoes. It was a very special day! The best part was that John took that night off so we came home and watched a movie by the Christmas tree.

Adrienne had her 18-month appointment the other day. She weighed in at 22 pounds, 10 ounce and she was 31.5 inches tall. She's only in the 25Th percentile for weight and in the 50Th for height. She's a little peanut! She got 2 shots but didn't take it too hard and she wasn't even grumpy afterwards. Usually all hell breaks lose after her shots but we lucked out this time!

I'm very excited because tomorrow we're leaving for New York City!! We only live about 3 hours away so I'm going to go to church and play the piano and everything and then we'll leave. We're staying outside of the city in a beautiful Hyatt (that we got for $50 on Price Line!) and going to Bobby Flay's restaurant!!!! Can't wait! Then, on Monday, my parents are driving up super early and picking us up at the hotel where we'll meet and drive into the city together. We didn't want to go to the city without people who knew that they were doing but we didn't want to have to get the girls up so early so this was a happy medium. It's going to be a great trip! John's never been so I'm mostly excited for him.

Well, speaking of our trip, I better finish up our packing. It's so much work to be the mom when you're going out of town. Lol. It's all worth it though:-)

Monday, November 29, 2010

Thanksgiving Recap.. Late, I Know!

I had wonderful intentions of getting on and sharing all about my wonderful Thanksgiving and all of the many things that I'm thankful for. Thanksgiving was amazing and went off without a hitch! Everything turned out great and it was a really wonderful day.

Then... My lofty goals came to a screeching halt when BOTH girls caught a stomach bug (at separate times). I have been in a fog of exhaustion and throw up over the last couple of days and I'm HOPING we've reached the end of it. Brooke's bug started on Friday night when she came into my room and threw orange cupcake up everywhere. That was a fun mess. Lol. She started to get better on Saturday morning so it was a quick moving bug. Once we got caught up from all of that laundry and exhaustion, Adrienne got the same bug.. Only worse.. on Sunday night. She's basically herself today, just really sleepy, and as for me, I'm exhausted! Soaking sheets and scrubbing carpets in the wee hours of the morning has a way of doing that to ya! In the midst of it, though, I still love being a mommy and caring for my girls. It's all worth it!

We just put our Christmas tree up tonight and it's absolutely beautiful! Adrienne was afraid of it at first but I think she'll be okay. Lol. She was more interested in eating candy canes than helping decorate. Figures, right? I'm really excited about the wonderful month of Christmas celebrations we have ahead of us. It's by far my most favorite time of the year.

Well, John's off so I think I'm going to go relax with him. I'm seriously keeping my fingers crossed that the bug doesn't catch us next. Yikes!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Thanksgiving Menu

I'm desperately trying to organize my thoughts for the huge Thanksgiving dinner. No matter how many times I look at the list I feel like there's something I'm forgetting but I don't think so. Here's what's on the menu...

Turkey
Homemade Gravy
Cranberry Relish (Which already has my mouth watering)
Pineapple Stuffing
Stuffing with apples and dried cranberries
Strawberry Jello Pretzel Salad
Yeast Rolls
Mashed Potatoes (All 20 pounds of them!)
Butternut squash with brown sugar and maple syrup
Baked Yams
Brussel Sprouts
Corn
Creamed Cauliflower
Broccoli
Homemade Applesauce
And for dessert: Apple pie, pumpkin pie, and cheesecake

Phew! I think that about does it. I don't think that anything is missing but we'll see. It's really not all that much to do though. I will do the turkey in a roasting bag (which I HIGHLY recommend) so that will be almost effortless. Then most of the items on the menu I can do throughout the day at my own pace (as we aren't eating til 4). The veggies and potatoes will be the only last minute things to stress me out. Oh yes, and the desserts will be done hopefully the night before. Out of the massive amounts of cooking that I'll be doing the only thing that has me overwhelmed is dessert. I would MUCH rather cook than bake but sometimes you just can't avoid it! In fact, I bet I could even make the pie crusts tomorrow and roll them out on Wednesday. Hmmm... I just might do that!

I am SO excited for Thursday! I love to think down the road to when all three girls will be old enough to cook with me. It will be a blast! Brooke loves to help in the kitchen and it's fun but it will really be nice when I can say, "Hey Brooke, could you mash the potatoes?" Yeah, I know... Years from now! Lol

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Catching Up

Wow, it's been over a week since I was on here last. I really hate that! Playing the piano and writing are my two "releases" and seeing as how I don't have a piano you would think I would write more! I guess not.

Nothing too exciting has been going on around here... Just the typical everyday stuff. That's what I love though! My sweet Adrienne is quickly growing into a toddler, leaving so much of her babyhood behind in a flash, and my precious Brookie makes me smile constantly with her silly inquiries and comments. Both girls are really at fun stages right now! And of course, the little girl in my belly is a non-stop kicker and she makes her presence known all the time. It's the best:-)

I have had now had a week to let it soak in that I will be a mother to THREE daughters. WOW! At first it seemed kind of like a dream or a fairytale and almost like it would never come to fruition. It's starting to feel more and more real with each passing day though. I'm SO excited! This will be our last baby (despite many people assuming we'll "try for that boy") and I'm excited to feel that sense of completion once Bailey arrives. I feel very, very lucky to be able to raise three little girls and help them grow into the women they'll need to be. It's a great responsibility and a huge honor.

John and I will, once again, be hosting Thanksgiving for his side of the family this year. I'm pretty sure that our headcount is close to 30 right now. I think I mentioned that a few weeks ago but it's impossible to not mention it again. Lol. We bought our big 25 pound turkey and all of the soda that we'll need so that's definitely a start! Last year I found our turkey frozen the night before Thanksgiving, despite letting it thaw for the suggested 4 days, so this year I decided I would give it WAY more time. I'll be thrilled to kick it out of my fridge come Thursday though! It's just taking up way too much space. I'm really, really excited about cooking again this year. I've got the whole system down to a fine art and I know just how much food we'll need and in what order to prepare things. It's a blast! I'm especially excited because John will be off on Wednesday and Thursday so it's going to be absolutely wonderful. He's a huge help:-)

That's about all there is to update ya on! Now I'm off to send John to work... 2 hours early:-( If only they would pay him to NOT work overtime. Haha

Friday, November 12, 2010

Announcing......

We are having our third GIRL!!! We couldn't be happier and are so in love already. She was bent over completely in half when we saw her and her big toe was on her forehead. Hilarious! Maybe she'll be a gymnast like her big sister, Brooke??

I was excited because she was measuring right on track her for gestational age, whereas my other girls measured big at this point. It's probably wishful thinking but I'm hoping that she comes out smaller, as I tend to have big babies. I love them regardless, obviously, but when they come out so big it's kind of sad because they already grow so quickly.

As for her name, we have decided on Bailey Quinn. We both love it! She will be born via scheduled C-Section on March 23, 2011. I was excited before but now I'm a million times more in love and eager to meet our latest addition.

The receptionist at the doctor's office today heard we were having our third girl and said, "Oh, I'm really sorry." Can you believe that? I didn't tell her that our baby was sick or that we had lost a child, I told her GOOD news. I told her, as politely as I could, that she better not apologize. Despite not knowing her, I had to choke away the tears because I know that people are just going to be rude and assume that we're not THRILLED to be having another girl. People these days!

What an exciting day! It's safe to say that I'm on cloud 9!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

The Gender Issue

Two days from now we found out if baby #3 is a boy or a girl. As I've said, I truly think it's a girl.. Which is just a hunch that I have. However, I will eagerly and excitedly welcome either gender.

People can be really rude, ya know? I can't even tell you how many people have said, "Well, if this one is a girl, there's always next time." Another one of my personal favorites is, "I bet you'll really be disappointed if it's another girl." Who are you to decide that, 1) I have to have a son one day, and 2) that I don't want another little girl. I feel that those comments are very offensive because you are basing the significance on my child's existence on his or her gender. It's not fair. We got these comments during my pregnancy with Adrienne but it's definitely FAR worse this time around.

I would love to have a little boy, don't get me wrong! Seeing John with his son would be special and it would be exciting to get to experience all things blue and boyish. With that being said, though, I feel that it would be equally as wonderful to experience John loving another little girl. We are going to be thrilled regardless.

I know people that place way too much hope on the gender of the baby that when it's the opposite of what they wanted or tried for they're disappointed. I think that that's a crying shame and that people who wouldn't openly welcome a child of either sex have major issues. There are people out there who can't have children and I'm willing to guarantee that they would take any child they could get. People have no business being ungrateful and I sure as heck am not going to be!

So, in 2 days we'll know the answer to this all-too-significant question. I can't wait!! It's going to be a wonderful blessing, regardless:-)

Saturday, November 6, 2010

All Fired Up!

I read a quote today that raised my blood pressure in seconds. It said, "The happiest women depend on men for absolutely nothing." WHAT?????? Are you serious? Why are we such a warped feminist society where we think that depending on a man is some horrible thing? I'm just lost on this one.

I depend on my man for lots of things, let me tell you. I depend on him to be my best friend because when he tells me that I'm beautiful, special, smart, worth something... I believe it. I depend on him to provide for our family, not because I can't make money or have no drive to work, but because HE thinks that what I'm doing at home is of utmost importance. In fact, he's putting on his uniform right now to go work on his night off because he knows I depend on him. I depend on him to help me raise our kids and take care of them... Not because I'm incapable of doing it but because God designed children to need daddies. I depend on him to love me because he, second to God, is the most important person in my life. Yes, I may depend on my husband for many things but I'm thankful that I have a wonderful man that I can depend on. What in the universe is wrong with that?

This culture just sickens me. It really does. God designed the man to be the head of the family structure and that's just not a popular idea today. I submit to my husband out of love for him but ya know what? Because he loves me and sees my best interest at heart, it's rare that the decisions he makes are that opposite from what I want. He's not some dictator who rules with an iron fist... We're a team. And when we do clash? We talk about it and come to common ground. It's about a mutual respect and love for one another and just because he's the head of our household, he's not superior to me... We just have different roles.

I also get really frustrated that so many people that I encounter say that I "don't work." At the doctor's office they say, "So, you're unemployed?" Another person told me, "Well you don't work so it's easier for you." Excuse me? I don't drop my child off at daycare for 8 hours a day so yes, you work out of the home, but when I'm home during those 8 hours, I'm working. I get no lunch or coffee breaks like working moms do so don't diminish the fact that I work extremely hard from home. I'm by no means out to judge working moms out there.. I'm just saying that I hate being compared to them because what I do is every bit as important and challenging.

Maybe the person who quoted this is deceived into believing that dependence equals being treated like a doormat? I'm not really sure. I just know that as a woman, I love looking at my husband and knowing that he is strong enough for me to depend on him. While I know that I have the brain power and work ethic to work for myself and depend on nobody, I'm thankful that I don't have to!

Friday, November 5, 2010

Mystery Solved??

Despite being up crying for a bit last night, Brooke was pretty much her usual self today. She was maybe a little bit grumpy but I attributed that to her being sleepy. She had no fever though so I was encouraged that things were looking good.

I thought my sweet princess was on the mend but as John was helping her take her shirt off for bed tonight she screamed hysterically, "My ear!" I thought that maybe it had gotten caught and hurt for a second but I soon realized that it was just plain hurting her. Anytime we would touch it or that side of her face she would scream out in pain. I know that kids can get ear infections with colds but it really surprised me that it would happen as quickly as it did, seeing as how she was just checked out on Tuesday. So I guess we're headed to the walk-in in the morning. Don't these things always seem to happen on the weekends??

It broke my heart because I gave Brooke some Ibuprofen (to help with any pain she might be having) before bed and immediately after taking it she said, "Mommy, it's not helping me." She then started to cry! I wanted to cry right along with her. I just wish that she had told me earlier so I could have given her some pain medication much sooner.

On another unrelated note, Brooke and I had the funniest conversation earlier. We were talking about the baby and whether it would be a boy or a girl. She said, "Mommy, if Jesus gives us a brother we're not going to say 'Hey, Jesus, we asked for a sister, not a brother,' we're going to be thankful either way." Lol. I guess she's been hearing me talk a lot about being happy for the baby regardless of gender because people assume we will be upset if it's another girl. I always tell them that we'll be thankful either way and the gender isn't important. Where do people get off assuming that we'll be disappointed over a new life? I don't get it!

Alright, John's off tonight so it's time to go watch a movie. Tonight it's Jonah Hex. I can't wait:-)

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Perplexed

It all started on Sunday when Adrienne came down with a cold. I was waiting and waiting for Brooke to get sick also but it took her a couple of days. On Tuesday morning she woke up with a fever close to 103 and because Adrienne hadn't been running a fever with her cold I was confused. I got her in to see the doctor where he said that some kids spike fevers with colds and that all else was fine.

Wednesday came and Brooke woke up energetic and happy, and most importantly, fever-free! We went about our day like normal because I was assuming that it was just a cold and not a virus or anything else. That evening she started to get really cranky and exhausted and her fever came back up to like 102.

This morning she woke up with a fever again. Despite that, she plays happily throughout the day when the fever is controlled and her appetite is actually normal, as well. She gets grumpy when she's sleepy or running a fever but other than that, is a total joy.

I don't understand this fever's randomness. Ya know? None of it makes sense to me. If it was a virus I would expect Adrienne to have the same symptoms. The doctor said if the fever is still here by Friday to bring her back and they'll run blood work to check for infection but I'm praying that she wakes up back to normal in the morning. Poor baby!

If these colds and fevers are any indicator of how our winter will go, I think I may give up now! Yikes... Keeping kids healthy is tough during the cold months.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

So There Really Is A Baby In There!!

I am so excited because this baby is really starting to get active! It's been several weeks now that I've been able to feel fluttering and kicking in there but it was kind of too early to say anything. If you've been pregnant you know how it feels but even so, it can be subtle at first. Now it is unmistakably a baby!

While I've been feeling this munchkin moving around on the inside, I had yet to be able to feel it from the outside. Last night that all changed! As I was laying in bed with my hands on my belly I got kicked repeatedly! I was so excited that I pulled John's hand over to share the moment with me but wouldn't you know, s/he stopped. Figures! It's become an addiction to have my hands on my belly waiting for the baby to kick and now that I've felt it, I only want to feel it more!

Being pregnant is such an honor. The thought of nurturing and sustaining a precious little life will never get old to me. What a perfect way that God created for human beings to come into the world!

Now... off to wait for someone to kick me:-)

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Trick or Treat!

We just finished up an eventful evening of trick or treating. My little Eeyore and beautiful princess had a great time but I think I had even more fun watching them. Not to mention, John's aunt made their costumes and they were absolutely gorgeous! If I had my camera cord I would upload some pictures but it's still MIA.

I had another nasty asthma attack this weekend and am currently dealing with bronchitis, along with the regular asthma stuff, so I was debating whether or not I would go out tonight. Cold air does NOT mix well with asthmatic lungs! However, armed with lots of good medicine, I roughed the cold night and had an absolute blast with my beauties. It was also great because John had his first Halloween off in 5 years so he could be with us the whole night. John's dad passed out candy out at our house for us while his mom and sister came to help out with the girls. We got tons of candy and we were only out for an hour! I'm not sure what we would have done with all of the candy if we had stayed out for the full 2 hours.

Growing up as a pastor's daughter we never celebrated Halloween. We would pass out candy and go to church Halloween substitutes but we never did full on trick or treating. The first year that Brooke was here we dressed her up as a ladybug to pass out candy and honestly, it was a blast. We've carried on the tradition and in my opinion, allowing your children to dress up and get candy from church is just a compromise. Either you agree with the holiday altogether or you don't. We don't celebrate Satan or compromise our beliefs on who Jesus is or what He means to us at all.. We just let our children look darn stinking cute and get a boat load of candy. That's what MY family believes and we are no less Christian or spiritual for our opinion... Just like we don't judge people for not taking their kids out. It's a fine line, I realize.

I just don't see Halloween as an issue of the heart so I'm not sure why so many people get hung up on who's celebrating it and who isn't. We're not saying that we don't believe that Jesus is the Messiah or that Jesus didn't die on the cross for our sins. To me, those are issues WORTH fighting over. Those actually matter. But if we're going to fight big on matters of opinion then when the big things come, how will handle them? I choose to pick my battles.

So, yeah, sorry for the rant. We had a great night and I'm happy that my girls had a special time with us!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Is It Christmas YET?????

My silly Brooke has been hilarious today! Well, everyday but especially today. She's been asking a lot of questions lately about the upcoming holidays and she's REALLY excited about everything coming up. We've been trying to explain that Christmas is pretty soon but it's not quite here yet. Yeah, kind of hard to explain to a 3-year-old who wants everything NOW.

This morning Brooke woke up and said, "It's Thanksgiving today!" When I told her no she said, "Oh that's right... It's Christmas today!!" She was REALLY excited about it. You have no idea! I told her that in about two months it would be Christmas but we had the whole holiday season to enjoy it so it would be here very soon. She bought into that and kind of settled down.

Then, on the way home from some errands today she said, "Christmas is on Saturday!" Again, we had the talk and she cried when I burst her bubble. I put her up in her bed for nap time and she drifted off to sleep singing, "Christmas is only 2 mumps away!" Hahahaha! I love that girl:-)

I can't really blame Brookie for being so confused. After all, I've had Christmas music on in the house for over a month now and all the stores have their decorations out. She has every right to be frustrated that it's taking so long!

I'm SO excited to experience Christmas with my girls this year. Obviously I'll love watching Adrienne but Brooke has such a huge grasp and understanding so it's going to be real blast to see it through her eyes. I'm with Brooke.. Get here already, Christmastime!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

And Another Chapter Closes...

My sweet Adrienne is officially weaned. 17 months is a long time to nurse a baby (according to most people's standards) but I nursed Brooke just shy of two years so I feel so weird that we're done already. It's always bittersweet when one of my kids moves onto the next step but she self-weaned and it was done in the most natural, healthy way. For that I am extremely happy!

Adrienne was never much of a nurser anyways so really, it's surprising that she nursed for as long as she did. I always said that my goal was to get her to a year and anything past that would be a bonus. Well, I got 5 months worth of "bonus nursing" so that's definitely a good thing. She always associated nursing with eating (go figure!) while Brooke associated it was comfort and security. Those 2 girls are so different so would I be surprised by them being opposites here??

Breastfeeding is such a beautiful, amazing thing. I have had countless hours of precious time feeding both of my girls. I have sacrificed my body, my time, and my ability to be away from them for many, many months. I am so thankful for all of that! It's crazy to think that I have been either pregnant or nursing since June of 2006 with no break. If this next baby nurses for at least a year then I will be done nursing in March of 2012. That would be 6 continuous years of having my body of "loan." Wow... CRAZINESS! Maybe this short break from breastfeeding won't be so bad after all:-) Lol

I still can't believe that Adrienne is officially done! This time last year she was just tiny and now she's completely weaned and very much a toddler. Oh how the time flies!

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Talk About Romantic!

Can I just say that I love my husband so much?? That man is the best thing that's ever happened to me! He lives to please me, walks all over himself to help me, and continually amazes me with his thoughtfulness and sensitivity to my needs. You can go throw up now:-)

He took last night off to go to a hayride with some friends up in Rochester. It's about 2.5 hours from our house but he said that we would just drive back that night to save money. Honestly, I was dreading that part of it but I didn't want to spend the money on a hotel either. John made arrangements for the girls so we could get
up there early before the hayride and go to dinner and the mall first. When we pulled into a hotel I said, "Are we lost?" Then he told me the news that he had gotten us a hotel early in the week but he wanted it to be a surprise! He then said that our friends had cancelled so we were just going to spend the night doing whatever I wanted! It was just perfect:-) We went to the Cheesecake Factory for dinner, which a HUGE treat because we don't have one where we live, and then to the mall, where I tried on lots of clothes but found nothing I liked. We went back to the hotel and snuggled up to a good movie and relaxed. It was such a blessing to have that time alone with my man!

We got back this afternoon about 12 so we weren't even gone for 24 hours but it sure felt like a nice long break. We LOVE our girls but we are the best for them when we are first best for each other. We came home and had a quiet afternoon and evening at home with out babies and it was just an overall a wonderful couple of days! Life is so incredible awesome:-)

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Down A Van

We have prided ourselves on saving money by driving inexpensive used cars. We paid $2000 for our van and it wasn't the most glamorous van or our dream car but it worked. It got me where I was going and it even provided transportation for several vacations. I stay home with our girls and for us, that means sacrificing some of the niceties in life. Obviously it's worth it because you can't put a price tag on being able to raise your children yourself!

Anyways, our van has been on the fritz for a while and my father-in-law (a mechanic) has been trying to figure out what's going on with it. There's a good possibility that the problem is with the engine.. So yes, for a cheap van, that's a cataclysmic blow. On top of that, we need new tires. Hardly sounds worth repairing at this point, huh? It's also got 130-some-odd-1000 miles on it so it's not like it's got a lot going for it.

I am SO thankful because John working nights frees up his car during the day so I am rarely inconvenienced by all of this. I have friends who only have one car and their husbands work normal hours, meaning they never have a vehicle. For this, I am extremely blessed. I never knew how much of a perk John working nights would be! I am also extremely grateful because my parents have been so accommodating letting us use one of their cars whenever a need arises. That has also been wonderful!

Of course we want to run out now and get a new van. I think we've pretty much decided, however, that we'll save money and wait until March (when the baby will be here and not fit in our car) to buy another vehicle. Somehow I am very content in this. Even though I know that when John does overtime during the evening hours that I'll be stuck. I need to be content in my own home and if I can't be then that's just not right. We don't always have to go somewhere or do something!

I am so thankful that God has promised to provide for all of our needs. I know that He knows we'll need a car that will fit the baby in March so I'm not going to sweat it! One day at a time!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Language Explosion

It's amazing to me how even though Adrienne is my second born, everything she does is just as exciting as it was when we experienced it for the first time around with Brooke. When I was pregnant with her I was a little curious about how that would all work out but I quickly learned that new developments never, ever become mundane when they involve my children!

Lately I am shocked by Adrienne's vocabulary. She says just about anything she wants to say and she can repeat anything and everything. It was so sweet because John gave the girls a bath last night and when she came out of the bathroom she said, "Dressed!" She was SO excited, too. I would have never thought that a one word declaration could make me smile so much but trust me, it does over and over.

Another thing that John and I find quite impressive about Adrienne is that she really loves people and is very social. In fact, there are several people at church whose names she blurted out tonight and we were in shock. Of course she knows how to say every family member's name (even our large extended family) but when she moved on to saying names of people she only sees once or twice a week, we were surprised. That's my girl.. Such a people person:-)

I am finding the experience of having a second child to be blast! I really think that Brooke's enthusiasm and excitement over Adrienne's achievements is partially what makes it so awesome. She is the first one to say, "Mommy, Adrienne said a new word!" Or, "Look what Adrienne's doing!" Brooke's love for her sister is something special and I hope it always, always stays that way.

These fun days that we're living in are what make it all worth while. Ya know? Motherhood is an exhausting, never ending job and sometimes life can seem pretty routine. However, one little smile or a new word out of the mouth of your baby can instantly cure all of that!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Dread

I feel so guilty because whenever I think about this baby, all I think about is how much I'm dreading the delivery. I'm excited to be a mommy again, I'm thrilled to add to our family, and I'm ecstatic when I think of a new person that I will get to discover. I just can't seem to get past that C-Section...

I've been down this road before, I know. My first C-Section was an emergency type situation so I didn't have time to process the "what ifs" or the magnitude of what I was about to go through. Then, when I made the decision to opt for a repeat C-Section with Adrienne (for safety reasons, combined with my doctor advising me that I was not a good candidate for a successful VBAC) it hit me hard. The main reason that that C-Section bothered me was because I felt like I was giving up that part of my womanhood and that I wouldn't be able to experience birthing babies naturally. I was afraid of the surgery, but my main feeling was guilt that I couldn't birth babies. Silly, I know. I realize that now. I dealt with those feelings and then, her birth was horrible. Being coherent and so aware of what was going on made the actual procedure ridiculously horrible for me (high blood pressure from freaking out, constant vomiting, you name it...). Then, to top it off, she was sick and in the NICU for the first 24 hours of her life so I couldn't even see her.


So, that leads me to now. I'm in a better place than I was after birthing Brooke... I realize that I am not any less of a mother or woman because I can't naturally deliver my babies. Would I LOVE that experience and prefer it? Absolutely! But it's not a statement of my character. However, I just want to look forward to the day I meet my baby and not dread the whole delivery and recovery experience as much as I already am. I think that my experience being so scary last time is lending to these fears and I just need to focus on what's important... And that's a healthy mom and a healthy baby!

We'll be scheduling our C-Section at our next appointment so I'll definitely have plenty of time to prepare for the date and time. I think that may scare me even more! I know that I'm being irrational and worrying about it now is only going to make the actual day that much worse. As my parents always told me growing up, "Think happy thoughts!" I'm sure trying.. But this C-Section is kind of a big deal!

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Lots Going On

The last couple of days have been jam packed but wonderful! John was off so we got lots accomplished, as usual. I'm always exhausted after his days off so I don't know how he does it because he doesn't get to rest like I do. What a man!

We took the girls to the pumpkin farm on Thursday and had the best day! We just enjoyed feeding the animals and picking out our pumpkins. We told the girls they could get whatever they wanted and Brooke picked out a small pumpkin while Adrienne went over to a 20 pound pumpkin and attempted to pick it up. She was SO mad that it wouldn't budge. Hilarious! We came home and put the girls down for their naps while I ran out to an allergist appointment (more on that in a minute). John and the girls made a homemade lasagna while I was gone so I even came home to dinner! It was John's fist attempt at lasagna (as I do all the cooking) but he followed my directions and made a WONDERFUL dinner. What a man! After we ate, we carved our big family pumpkin, made caramel apples, roasted pumpkin seeds, and watched a pumpkin movie. It was the PERFECT night as a family! I'm a little bummed, though, because I can't find my camera cord to upload my pictures so I haven't been able to do that yet. My brother-in-law stopped by while we were doing our pumpkins and sent me some pictures of that part so I can at least post a few of those..

In other exciting news (to me!)... After 12 years at the same allergist, I made the switch to a new doctor. I am THRILLED because I seriously think he's going to make me feel human again. Asthma and allergies are severely interrupting my life and I'm just so fed up. I'm on 10 daily medications, 2 allergy shots a week, and I still am up all night not being able to breathe and just altogether feeling like garbage. He said that that's just not normal, which my other doctor never told me, and the technology in his office was incredible. He wants to do a CAT scan of my sinuses, among other things, and he changed up some of my medicines. I'm also going to be starting a new round of shots. He also did a test of my airways and discovered that out of like 2.75%, my airways are functioning at .56%, meaning that I have really small airways so I have to work that much harder to breathe. I knew it wasn't in my head! I've had asthma forever and I'm just learning this! He said he can treat me much better with that knowledge. So yeah, it sounds silly, but I feel like I'm getting my life. What a BIG deal!

On Friday I had my 15 week appointment and I heard the precious baby's heartbeat. It never, ever gets old:-) We have our big ultrasound on the 12Th of November and I'm EXTREMELY excited! I can't wait to have an identity for this baby so we can start planning better. I'm telling you all, though, it's a girl. I don't doubt it. Maybe I'll be wrong and get a boy? I win either way!

Today I went to New Jersey with my sister for the day. Her sister-in-law was having a baby shower and she was just going to drive up and back by herself but I made arrangements to keep her company. We have 4 kids in between the 2 of us (almost 6, in a few months) so even being in the car for that long was enjoyable because we could actually talk and listen to good music. It was a long day and of course I missed my family but it was very refreshing to get out with her and be able to spend quality time with her! It's rare that we have times like that so it really was a great day. John was amazing and held the fort down here and I came home to 2 gorgeous, happy, and CLEAN girls, along with a spotless house. It was wonderful!

Alright, here are a few pictures to leave with. Enjoy!





Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Blogging Burn Out

Wow, after 3 and half years of blogging I think that I just got burnt out. Day in and day out of faithfully sharing my thoughts turned into me having nothing to say. How could that be? I'm rarely without words! Haha. I've said it a million times... I love my blog and I love being able to look back through the years to remember things so I'm going to try to be more faithful to update.. For MY sake. Anyways, to get me back on track, I'll just do a bullet post today. I'll throw a nice formatted, paragraph-form post out the window.

*Christmas Play... I have been so busy thinking about, writing, and planning our church's Christmas play. We haven't done a play in several years so I decided to take that project on. I just wrote a really cute musical with some songs and stuff so I'm excited. A lot of people are helping out at church so it should be fun. I just have to figure out how I'll play the piano for some of the songs, "direct" it and organize it. Yikes. I wish I could split myself down the middle!

*The girls are doing fantastic! This cooler weather has brought on lots of nice days at home baking and playing. Those are my favorite moments that we have together!

*Brooke's been keeping her regular nap AND going to bed great lately! YES! For a while there she would be awake in her room really late if she had a nap but now she's still out by about 8:30. For this I am EXTREMELY grateful! She has had a little streak of an attitude lately but she really is a great, affection, kind-hearted little girl. What child doesn't have an attitude sometimes?

*Adrienne is still the most content creature I have ever met. She continues to "go with the flow" and rarely gives me a problem. Sometimes I feel bad for her because she's so easy but she's VERY happy that way. I guess I just don't identify with her quiet, easy-going nature so it's hard for me. We're polar opposites! Lol. She is saying a countless amount of words now and her favorite game is identify her eyes, ears, mouth, nose, chin, and hair. It's so cute!

*I am going to be 15 weeks pregnant tomorrow! I have just started getting REALLY bad headaches (that I always get in the second trimester) that have been rough but I'm pushing through! I go to the doctor on Friday and I'll get to schedule the BIG ULTRASOUND! What's your guess? Boy or girl? I've also started to get a little belly. I just made the switch to my maternity jeans because the others were just getting too uncomfortable. I guess I could take a picture of my growing self but it might depress me. Lol. I had just lost 16 pounds before getting pregnant but I know this is a good cause:-)

*John's off for the next 2 days. YAY!!!!!!!!! We're taking the girls to the pumpkin farm tomorrow so I'm really looking forward to that. We're also excited to watch the Atlanta Braves in the post season over the next couple of days (and hopefully weeks). Let's go Braves!

So that's about that. Life is great and I'm really loving it more and more with each day! It's been especially nice to start slowing down after the summer rush and I am happy to be laying low these days.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Feeling Human!

On Thursday I went to my primary care doctor and on top of running a 103 degree fever (which mind you, started while I was in the ER), my lungs sounded worse than ever. It didn't take her long to determine that I had pneumonia. She couldn't believe that they didn't catch that in the ER the night before and was really surprised that they had just let me go home. She gave me lots of wonderful medicine... Steroids, a strong antibiotic, and some other medicine to control my asthma. Within 24 hours I was feeling semi-normal again and now I'm feeling pretty decent! I've started to sleep through the night again (YAY!) and regain my energy so that's good. I'm a little anxious about how I'll feel when those wonderful medicines stop this week but I'm keeping my fingers crossed!

John and I had a wedding to go to for one of his work friends last night. It was nice to be able to get all dressed up and out for the night with my man.. Especially after being caged in the house for so long. I was really sad to leave the girls since I had been away from them so much due to being so sick but my parents took amazing care of them. I don't know about anybody else but I happen to think that grandparents are the best!

I was just thinking today that I am so thankful for medicine and doctors (Well, doctors that actually know how to do their jobs!). People used to die of simple illnesses like pneumonia but now that we have such awesome technology and medicine we don't have to suffer. What a world!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

What Gives???????

I love Fall but with this time of year comes severe, severe allergies for me. Ragweed and Golden Rod bloom like crazy around here in the autumn months so it really takes a major toll on my health. Being pregnant and all, I am hesitant to take much of anything to help me feel better but that has all been impossible, as my asthma has been outrageously awful as well.

This whole mess started about two weeks ago. I knew it was coming when September got here but never expected it at this magnitude. I went to the walk-in with a mega asthma flair up where they put me on steroids, which always make me feel great in the asthma department. After a five day course of those medicines, I immediately reverted back to not being able to breathe as soon as I stopped taking them. It's frustrating. Having to stop in the middle of a sentence to take a breath or not being able to run around after the girls without feeling winded is very sad for me.

A few days after that asthma issue started I began to feel REALLY dizzy. I know that with pregnancy you can feel dizzy... Especially if you stand up too quickly or don't have food in your system. However, it was a constant, all-day-dizziness that would NOT go away. I went to the doctor and they found that I had severe inner ear infection that was completely messing up my equilibrium, as well as a sinus infection. Why would I be surprised after all of my allergy issues?

Then tonight, only three days after seeing the doctor for my ear, I ended up at the doctor's again for my asthma. When I got there they were very concerned and told me to go to the hospital right away to be admitted. They wanted to take me by ambulance because my oxygen levels were low and my heart rate was really high but I outright refused. My primary care doctor is out of a different hospital than the my OBGYN so I decided to go to the one where my OBGYN works. Because of that, however, the primary care doctor couldn't really admit but called over to the hospital to explain what was going on. When I got to the ER, I met with some fly-by-night nurse practitioner who took my issues very lightly. Long story short, he wanted to give me more steroids (that my primary care doctor SPECIFICALLY told me to stay away from because I was just on them last week) and when I refused he sent me home saying that that was all he could do. I left the hospital with my oxygen levels still low, my pulse still high, a fever, and still unable to breathe without struggle. I sit behind this computer right now wondering how I'll get through the night with this awful struggle to simply breathe.

I am beyond frustrated now. It's been over two weeks since I've felt "normal" and it's just not fair. I have no energy, mainly because I'm up all night fighting to breathe, and I feel bad that my girls aren't getting the mommy they deserve:-( I'm going to make some phone calls tomorrow and try to find some help. This is getting old FAST.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

15-Month Stats

Adrienne had her 15-month checkup today and she checked out great with the doctor, not that we had any doubts or anything! She weighs 21 pounds, 10 ounces and is 30.5 inches long, putting her right in the 50Th percentile for both. She hasn't really gotten much bigger since her first birthday but that's completely normal. Heck, if they continually grew at the rapid pace that they do over the first year, they would be 200 pounds by their 5Th birthday! Haha

In other Adrienne news, she's doing absolutely great. She continues to be a good natured, content little creature and her vocabulary is blossoming wildly. She can repeat just about anything we ask her to and the list of words that she uses regularly is pretty impressive. She also listens to what we tell her to do and it's always fun to watch her complete the tasks on demand. Her latest thing is doing "flips" where she bends her body in half and puts her head on the ground. It's hysterical!

A couple of weeks ago I asked Adrienne what her name was and she said, "A." We never call her that but it made sense because it's the first part of her name. For the longest time she would repeat that "A" was her name. Now, however, when we ask her what her name is she shakes her head and says, "NO!" She sounds all annoyed, too. It cracks me up!

Adrienne has also started that phase where she repeats my name all day everyday. I hear my name over and over again from sun up to sun down. It's so sweet... Most of the time. Lol

I feel so blessed to have such healthy, vibrant, and budding little princesses. They sure do make life fun, huh?

Saturday, September 11, 2010

So, Guess What!

After keeping my secret for nearly two months now, I am excited announce that we are expecting baby #3!! I'm almost 12 weeks along and headed for a due date of March 31 but the baby will be born a week or so early via ascheduled C-Section (BLEK for that mode of delivery!). This baby was a big surprise at first but we're getting excited and feeling blessed that the Lord had given us another baby to love on.

When I was pregnant with the girls I always told people that I was expecting after I had my first ultrasounds. This time around, however, I just felt so in shock that I couldn't even believe it was happening so I've kept it more private! Of course family and some friends have known but we waited until yesterday to officially break the news for the world to hear. I actually saw the baby's heartbeat on the 13Th of August so we've known for a while that things are looking good! On top of that, I've had some crazy food aversions and several weeks worth of being sick so we have felt fairly confident about this little munchkin.

We had a big scare yesterday when I went for a routine prenatal appointment... The doctor put the doppler on my belly and tried and tried and tried to find the heartbeat but just could not, even after like five minutes. My heart was racing, as well as my mind! I've never experienced that! The doctor quickly did an ultrasound, however, and we saw a beautiful little creature with a racing heart. So precious! He/she was moving around and it was so amazing to see life at such a young stage. I've never had a 12ish week ultrasound before so I was really impressed at how lifelike the baby looked... He/she has arms and legs now and you can distinguish that it's a baby, unlike the 8-week ultrasounds that I'm so used to.

I know everything will work out great and that we will never regret this baby coming into our lives. It's just scary when you aren't quite prepared for something of this magnitude! I know the girls will do great, as they are doing awesome with their new cousin, and Adrienne and the baby will be 23 months apart so that's almost perfect. Brooke and Adrienne were 27 months apart and that was ideal and I'm hoping this will go over just as smoothly.

I am convinced that we're having another girl. In fact, I'll be so shocked and question the ultrasound tech if they tell me it's a boy! I truly don't care about the baby's gender and would NOT be disappointed either way but I'm definitely thinking girl. If it's a boy we have the name Wesley John all set but for a girl we're still tossing up several names. I'm really pushing for Macie but will see if I get my way:-) I actually get quite offended when people assume that we'll be disappointed if this baby's a girl. What, because a gender is what makes someone so special? I think not!

So now that you're in on my little secret I can actually talk about life more often on here! It's been so hard... Not wanting to mention being tired or sick or going to an appointment. It's all out in the open now so that's good!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Refreshed

John and I got home yesterday afternoon to 2 very happy little girls! I'm not sure if they were happy to see US or the bags of popcorn and peanuts that we hoarded for them from our all-you-can-eat seats at the game. Haha! It was so great to see them and it was even better to hear that they had behaved like little angels, slept great, and kept up with their regular routines. Oh yes, and my house was spotless... Just like I like it:-) Again, we were SO BLESSED by John's parents here. It was incredible!

I cannot say enough nice things about my husband and the time that we had together. Even the long 5 hour car ride was fun and I don't remember laughing that hard in a long time! John is everything to me... He's my best friend, my confidant, and the person who knows me best. Though we love our children and love being with them, it was so nice to be able to just get away and be carefree together.

We had an absolute blast at the game. The seats were awesome and the best part? John caught a foul ball off of is favorite player's bat! That right there was amazing! The Braves ended up losing 5-0 which was a bummer but we had such a great time that it didn't seem to matter nearly as much. At one point the rain started coming down HARD and it was freezing so we ran for cover and laughed and talked as we waited for the rain to stop. After a short rain delay the game resumed but even that wait was fun!

We stayed at a beautiful hotel, got to walk through downtown Pittsburgh, and most importantly, were able to eat at Chick Fil A on the way home!!! We don't have them in New York so our vacations always revolve around finding me that precious restaurant. Pretty sad, I know!

John's getting ready to leave for work now which stinks but I feel so refreshed and refueled. I am so thankful for an amazing trip with my amazing husband!

The view from our seats...



Monday, September 6, 2010

So Much To Smile About!

I am so excited to announce that today I became an aunt again.. For the the third time now! My brother's wife gave birth to a very handsome little guy this evening. His name is Ryan Jared and he weighed in at 7 pounds, 11 ounces. He's absolutely precious and I feel so blessed to be able to have another special child in my life to love on. The miracle of life NEVER gets old, does it?

In other exciting news, tomorrow morning John and I are leaving for a 2 day trip! He's a huge Atlanta Braves fan so we're driving to Pittsburgh to see them play. The tickets there were so cheap and we figured it wouldn't be quite as busy of a city. We got 2 tickets along the right field line with all-you-can-eat passes for a grand total of $87. Can't beat it! I'm so excited to be out late tomorrow night at the game without any responsibility. It will sure be weird, though! I feel very blessed because John's parents are actually going to stay at our house so we don't have to uproot the girls. I was anxious to leave Adrienne but she never wakes up at night so I feel confident that everyone will be able to sleep well tomorrow night. With the girls being home I won't really worry about them as much as I would otherwise. John and I will head home on Wednesday morning so we'll be back before they know it! John and I so need this after him working 12 hour shifts for the past 3 days and just catching each other in passing. I can't wait for all of the one-on-one time we'll get to enjoy with one another!

Alrighty, off to go pack and get everything ready for our trip. I CAN'T WAIT! Hopefully the Braves will even WIN for us tomorrow, too!

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Potty Prodigy

I am amazed at Adrienne lately! Every night before bath time she was looking at the potty and saying, "Uh, uh!" like she wanted to be put on it. I never thought to put such a young baby on there but I've started doing it and she goes on demand for me all the time. It's remarkable! I put her on in the morning when she gets her diaper changed and even if she has nothing in there she'll push and push until her little face is red. It's so funny! We also follow the same routine at night. Now she looks at the potty and says, "pee pee."

Another thing that she's been doing is telling me before she goes poop. She'll say "poo poo" and then go but I haven't actually caught her yet to put her on the potty for it. If I'm in the middle of something it hardly seems worth it to take her pants off, rip off her diaper, and rush her to the potty.. Though I know I should.

She's WAY too young to be potty trained but holy cow, she's a step ahead of where Brooke was at this age. I'm certainly not expecting her to be out of diapers anytime relatively soon but I'm definitely going to continue following her lead with the potty!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Welcome, September!!

Ah, I'm SO HAPPY that it's September! Hopefully it means that life will settle down once the crazy summer ends. I also love when all the kids go back to school because then I get my nice quiet stores and parks back when I'm out and about during the week. After the non-stop busy couple of months that we just lived through, I'm ready for things to stop moving at warp pace!

I have decided that I'm turning into a northern girl through and through. Having lived in Texas for the first 9 years of my life, I used to cringe at the thought of being cold and I only ever wanted hot temperatures. Now I'm roasting when it's 80 and longing for the cool New York Fall weather in the 50's and 60's. Today it was 95 (which is not extremely common) and it was dreadful! I'm super excited for this weekend when it's supposed to be in the 60's and rainy. That is perfect weather if you ask me!

My favorite days are when we stay in and read books, bake, play, clean, and cook comfort food for dinner. There's nothing like the smell of Autumn leaves or the smell of your furnace kicking on for the first time of the season. I can't wait for bushel upon bushel of apples that I will turn into countless pies, breads, muffins, applesauce, dumplings, and all manner of other wonderful goodies. I love to distribute all of these goodies between neighbors and family. I'm also SUPER excited about Thanksgiving where I will cook dinner for about 20 people. It's one of my favorite things to do each year!

Fall is going to cost me a pretty penny this year because Brooke had a huge growth spurt. She has gotten a lot taller so despite all of her clothes (down to like 18 months!) fitting her waist, she has got to go up to a 3T for length. She also needs all new shoes and socks but that's to be expected. We've been buying things here and there but I'm thankful that we can kind of ease into the cooler weather so it won't be all at once. I'm encouraged though because Brooke has an enormous box of hand-me-downs for Adrienne.. Lots of beautiful dresses and jeans! I even found a pair of Brooke's old size 5 Nike's that were barely worn so that saves about 30 bucks right there! Despite spending money, I love buying clothes for the girls and it's so fun to dress them for the cooler weather. Have I mentioned that I LOVE this time of year?

So bye-bye lazy, hazy, crazy days of Summer. Fall is here to take over and that is just fine by me!

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Mellow Yellow

In case you don't me, I'm kind of... Intense. Lol. I'm always going a million different directions and am kind of particular about how I like things. Sitting still is not something that I do well and I'm rarely quiet. I dive into things head first, most of the time without much thought, and enjoy going against the grain. My dad always jokes that I was born complaining about the temperature in the delivery room. Thanks Dad! I am your typical "type A" personality and that's just how I'm wired apparently. I am extremely thankful for my amazing husband is the polar opposite of me and keeps me grounded. What would I do without him?

When I had Brooke and she was quiet and introverted, cautious and guarded, I completely credited John for her personality. She has always slept well and been extremely compliant and very happy to play on her own. She is particular, however, and likes things to be a certain way. She hates messes and freaks out when things don't go according to her plan. Despite that, I still thought that she was extremely laid back.

Next Adrienne came along... She slept through the night in her crib at about 2 weeks of age and has never looked back. She has always eaten like a pro, accepted any sippy cup that we've given her, and been overall happy to be just about anywhere. She is a little bit more mischievous than Brooke was as far as getting into things and she loves to create messes, but seriously, you have never met a more mellow creature until you have met Adrienne. Sure, she has her moments, but for the most part, she occupies herself quietly with shoes, books, buckles, and baby dolls. She doesn't really get overly excited or upset about things but instead, just kind of takes it all in stride. She is hilarious and silly for most of the day but when you tick her off or hurt her feelings she just furiously sucks away at her thumb. Lol. So cute:-)

I am starting to believe that baby #3 will be a terror!! Haha! How could I, of all people, have a super content child and then give birth to an even more mellow kid? I just don't get it. Do I even want to know what the payback will be like? Because let's face it... I kind of have it coming to me BIG time!!

Friday, August 27, 2010

Living My Dream

John has been off the past couple of days and they have just been wonderful! I enjoy having him off SO MUCH that I often have to remind myself to learn to be equally as content when he is working. You just can't live for those days off because you'll miss a lot on the in between days if you wish them away!

Life has just been amazing lately. Do you ever have those times when you sit back and look at all of the blessings around you and wonder how life could get any better? For me, it happened today when I ran out to the store to get a few things for dinner. I announced that I was making breakfast for dinner when I got back and when I came home, John and the girls had made the waffle batter together. It was just precious to me for some reason! Another moment when I couldn't fathom life being any better was when John and the girls had a parade downstairs and they walked in circles blowing whistles and riding their stuffed animal horses. Little moments like that, where I see my husband being the amazing daddy that he is, just fill my heart with so much joy!

Another thing that has been a source of much happiness for me lately is that my girls are best buddies. They walk everywhere hand-in-hand and they are rarely seen apart. Brooke assumes responsibility for Adrienne (which can be challenging for me) and has been known to attempt to change her clothes and/or diaper and brush her hair. It's adorable but Adrienne doesn't really appreciate it and it ends in a huge fight! Lol. I love watching those girls together and my heart fills with joy when I think of them growing up with a built in best friend in each other.

I walked into one of my friends from high school the other day and when I asked her what she was up to she told me she was a doctor. A doctor???? Seriously???? I couldn't believe my ears because that is such a prestigious degree. I told her how proud I was of her and she told me that she was equally as proud of me for being a mom because that's all that I ever wanted out of life. While I temporarily felt as though I haven't been as productive as she has, I quickly snapped out of it and remembered that I am seriously doing all that I ever wanted to do and I'm living the life that I always said I would live. All titles and degrees aside, that is what matters at the end of the day... That I am fulfilling MY dreams and not the dreams that society thinks are of the most importance.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Fed Up With Naps

We have reached a crossroads with Brooke that has left me completely clueless. Here's the situation... If she does not take a nap, she is an absolute disaster. I love her dearly but it's obvious that she still needs the afternoon period of rest because she can barely function without it. However, if she does get a nap, we pay for it at nighttime. The other night she was in her room singing until after 10. It was just awful!

I think the obvious answer is to say that if she still acts like she needs a nap then I should give her one but bedtime is so difficult. I know how frustrating it is to not be able to sleep and I don't want to cause that for her but at the same time, she needs to kind of learn to deal with it. I don't mind the singing so much but it's quite frustrating to have her come out of her room 3 times saying, "There's a bug in my room!" or "I need a drink of water." It's hard to know how firmly to discipline her in these situations.

I am a stickler for an 8:30 (at the very latest) bedtime for her because of John's schedule. Due to him working nights, John and I don't get those hours of cuddling and quality time before we drift off to sleep like most couples so I have tried VERY hard to set aside the 2 hours before he leaves for work for just us. That may sound selfish but our relationship is of utmost importance to me and I put him first here. The kids are going to grow up and leave in 18 years or so and I don't want to look over at John at that point and realize I don't know him. So yeah, all that to say that a later bedtime is just not a good option for us.

So I'm baffled on this one. I don't know what the solution is and I know that there has to be one. Do any of you experienced moms have any input? If you do, please share!!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Heavy Hearted

A couple of weeks ago there was this video circulating on Facebook called "Why Cops Don't Smile." A lot of people from John's department were posting it so I thought I would check it out. For all of you police wives out there that worry, do not look at it. For me, it gave me chills all over my entire body and bad dreams for many nights. It was a true video... And that's probably why it was so sad and so scary.

With that being said, I have been worrying more and more and John each night as he leaves for work. This is an endless battle with me. Most of the time I'm at peace with his career but I do go through seasons of doubt and fear. Have you ever woken up in a cold sweat and wondered if your husband was alive? That happens to me from time to time... Especially after that darn video! John has also been working a lot of overtime so that doesn't help my cause for worry, either.

Then, on Monday, one of John's co-workers who was a dispatcher for his department was crushed in a horrible farm accident. The details aren't super important here, I guess. All that matters is that despite living for a few days he ultimately died on Wednesday evening. He left behind 3 kids and a wife and I seriously have been dying for them. John worked closely with this man and always spoke highly of him. He apparently had a smile that would light up a room and a voice that would cause you to feel warm and secure. He was just one of those people that everyone liked. I know John is hurting through this loss, along with a lot of other people from work, but can you imagine his poor family?

These thoughts all kind of tie together for me into one single sentence... Life is short. Seize the day, make every moment count, and live like today was your last. I like to think that by worrying about John or keeping him home more that he'll be out of harm's way but that's just not true. Cop or no cop, on duty or off, young or old, those that we love can be taken from us in the blink of an eye.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

I'm Back... And Extremely Unmotivated!

Hey all! I kind of took a hiatus from the computer world because I just needed a break. We got back in town a week ago from tomorrow and had an amazing, amazing trip! John didn't actually go back in to work until Sunday night so we even had some downtime at home to get caught up on everything. Having him off for 8 days has made it awfully hard to get back into the swing of things though. I love him so much and adore having him home! If only he could retire 30 years early or so. Lol

On our trip we did so many fun things.. Lots of great shopping in little shops, lounging on the beach and building tons of sandcastles, eating at fabulous seafood places, and just enjoying one another. Life has been so busy lately and it's nice to have a refresher like that to just get away from it all. Here are some cute pictures of all of our adventures...








It was such a perfect vacation filled with so many special moments! I only wish I had the time and space to share the rest of our pictures on here. If you're my Facebook friend you'll be able to see all of them.

Hopefully all is well with everyone else! I should be back in the blogging business semi-faithfully from here on out.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Cape Cod or Bust!

I am so extremely excited... We leave early Sunday morning for our vacation! John surprised me and booked the hotel a while back and where we were going was suppose to be a secret but he caved! Lol. We can't keep anything from each other:-) We're going to Cape Cod, Massachusetts, which is somewhere that I have always, always wanted to go! He got us and awesome hotel that's walking distance to the downtown shops and restaurants and close to the beach. I absolutely cannot wait!

We're still debating when exactly we're leaving. John was originally off on Saturday night but he picked up some overtime at a local casino because they pay really well for security. He's doing some event there until around 2 A.M. Sunday morning. We're tossing up whether or not he should come home and sleep for 4 hours or so or if we should just bite the bullet and leave right then. Leaving at 2 would be hard for us... especially him because he wouldn't sleep AT ALL... but it would workout SO much better for the girls. It's like a 6-7 hour trip so we're anxious to get that part of the trip behind us. On the way home we're breaking the trip up though so that's really our only big chunk of driving that we have to do. John swears he'll be fine to just drive and not sleep (Because that's the shift he's usually on) but when I think of the exhaustion he'll feel, I feel awful for him!

Tomorrow will be a crazy day of mowing the lawn, packing, cleaning the house (because I'm a freak before we leave!), and just getting everything in order to get out of here. I'll be on some time late next week with lots of cute pictures!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

My Bubble

I have horrible allergies... So awful that the 6 medicines I take daily and the 2 shots I get weekly still leave me feeling miserable. I get NO relief and am always sneezing, wheezing, itching, blowing my nose, and coughing. I have year round allergies, too, so I don't ever get a break from feeling this way. It's an exhausting and frustrating way to live. Trust me!

John did some research to help me feel better and he found the Idylis Allergen Remover. After reading the reviews we thought it would at least be an interesting experiment to see if it works. We just got a small one for our room for starters (which is great because my allergies prevent from sleeping well) and what do you know! I can sleep at night now!!!!!!!!!!!! I always joke that I am allergic to the world so I should live in a bubble and I now have that "bubble" for at least a part of my day. It's so nice to not be up all night sneezing and blowing my nose. I feel very excited and very blessed to have some relief.

I sound like an infomercial, I know, but I'm telling you, people! If you or any of your kids suffer from allergies, buy this product and you will be amazed at the impact. Now, I think I'll go retire into my "bubble!" Lol

Friday, July 30, 2010

Kindness Pays Off!

The girls and I were bumming around the house this morning when some weird stranger came knocking on the door. I'm always a freak whenever someone knocks on the door because most of our company is the kind that just comes right it! So when I saw this strange man, I grabbed my phone (just in case!) and with a pit in my stomach, opened the door.

The man said, "So, I have a really big favor to ask." I'm thinking "What in the world do you want????" I then noticed that his truck said "Dog Control" so I figured he worked for the town and wanted help finding a lost dog. Then he said, "My grand kids are up from Utah and I want to take them on the river walk today but I have no wagon. Do you know where I could find one to borrow?" Right next to him sat my wagon. I mean, seriously, what was I supposed to say? I was kind of apprehensive and then he passed me his card and told me that he worked for the village and all of his information was listed there. So, without really thinking or anything, I told him he could have the wagon for the day as long as it was back this evening. I honestly didn't doubt that he would return it. I guess I'm just naive. When I told John, he was completely shocked that I would be so trusting and he honestly couldn't believe what I had done. There's a cop for ya! Lol

We left for a birthday party this evening and when we returned, the wagon was on the porch, parked safe and sound. On our front door was a nice note that said, "Thank you for trusting me!" And inside an envelope was a gift card for a free large pizza at the pizza shop in our town. I couldn't believe it! When I loaned that guy our wagon I really just thought that I was doing him a favor.. Not that I was going to receive something in return.

I hate that this world is such a cruel and mean place that we have to even bat an eyelash before loaning something to someone. Ya know? I tend to be WAY to trusting and it hasn't come back to bite me yet.. It's actually continued to be rewarding! But maybe John's right? I probably shouldn't trust just anyone. Even so, I'm really glad that I could help that guy take his grand kids on a walk! :-)

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Kid In A Candy Store

Since John became a cop (almost 5 years ago) he has had to order all of his police gear online. It's not quite the same as being able to go sift through things in a store to find exactly what you want. So when his brother (who just graduated from the academy) found a police store about an hour from here, they were pretty excited. Today we hopped in the car and went!

From the sounds of this magical place, I was expecting a huge warehouse that was filled with all manner of police stuff. I got one part right... It was filled with police stuff but it was NOT a warehouse. It was this tiny place that had anything and everything that a cop could ever want or dream of. Seriously, John could have spent $500 in there without even blinking! We were there forever and I was feeling kind of claustrophobic but there were tons of cops in and out of there and I basically sat in a chair for like 2 hours and listened in on everyone else's conversations. What else was I to do? Oh yes, and I also helped pick out boots. I was very helpful, if I can brag! Lol

John walked away with an awesome new flashlight that holds a charge for like 12 hours and only takes 90 seconds to recharge. He felt bad spending the money but his flashlight now isn't working consistently and when you work nights, you NEED a light! He also had to buy a new thing for his gun belt to hold his new flashlight and then some new boots. I basically had to BEG him to buy the boots though because again, he hates spending money on himself. I was so happy when we walked out of there with things for him! It took some effort on my end but it was worth it!

The police store was kind of like a version of my personal hell... The bathrooms were "manly" (AKA... Filthy!), there was nothing pretty to look at (other than pink handcuffs!), and there were nasty, hairy dog beds (but thankfully NO dogs today). However, I was feeling so happy to be doing something for John by being there with a happy heart. How many times has he sat outside of the dressing room while I've tried on 12 different pairs of jeans? Or how many times has he walked through Target with me just because I like to look? It was so nice to "give back" to the man who does SO much for me to make me happy:-) He was completely in his element and I was thrilled to see him doing something for himself for once.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Let Her Be Little

My day started this morning with Brooke wanting to wear her bright yellow shoes. More than anything in the universe, that was her one desire. Now, I'm all for snazzing things up and these patent leather crazy yellow shoes are cute sometimes... Provided that they are matched with the perfect outfit. However, when they don't exactly match the outfit that she's wearing, I have to kind of think of ways to distract her from them. This morning, though, I just let her be 3 and ya know, it felt good. I'll admit that the shoes weren't horribly mismatched with her outfit but they wouldn't have been my first choice. That didn't matter though. She was proud that she had chosen her shoes.

Then, we had my nephew's birthday party tonight and Brooke wanted to wear her insanely huge (but adorable) tutu. Guess what... I let her! I'm not going to lie... I was happy when she decided to take it off about 10 minutes through the party but at least she got to assert her independence. She also enjoyed the attention of everyone complimenting her tutu! Lol

Brooke is starting to more and more want to have a say in the ins and outs of her day... How she wears her hair, what shoes she wears, what clothes she wears, etc... You get my point! I try so hard to remember that she will only be 3 once and this is her only childhood. Life is too short to waste time worrying about bright yellow shoes or enormous tutus. These are lessons that I am slowly learning!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Widing Down

This week has been an absolute whirlwind. We've been getting home so late that the girls have been going to be late, thus waking up late. We were so wiped out that nobody was up until 10 today! By the time we did what we needed to do this morning, it was time to put Adrienne down for a nap and then head right back up to the church and do it all over again. I am just thankful that it's only one week out of the year!

Tomorrow night we will end the week with parent's night at church and I am SO excited to see Brookie do her little presentation with her class. My mom and John's mom were her teacher this year and they did an awesome, awesome job with the kids. Brooke, along with the 5 other kids in her class, has had a really fun week of it and she learned so much. It's so funny because she was the only girl in her class and the boys are SO ROUGH but she's so dainty. All the workers kept telling the boys "ladies first" so by the end of the week Brooke had become quite spoiled. Lol. She's in for a rude awakening!



The dinners all went off without a hitch and everyone enjoyed them. It was so nice because people kept bringing fresh veggies from their gardens so I was able to utilize those each night with the dinners. It was fun getting creative at the last minute! Tomorrow night I have to cook dinner for parent's night but then I'll be off the hook until the next church function. I think we'll do NOTHING next week and it will feel like heaven to be home.

I'm sad that John has to go back into work tonight and I feel bad that he got no time to rest during the past couple of days. Poor guy! Hopefully he can catch up on his rest next week. He is one tough cookie!

Monday, July 19, 2010

The Longest, Hottest Week

This week our church is doing its yearly Vacation Bible School (VBS) and every single year, it just so happens to be during the HOTTEST week of the year. I love how that works out! Lol. We don't have air conditioner in the church so you pretty much sweat the whole time but it's just par for the course.

We have a lot of hungry kids that come so we have always done dinner before our VBS each year. I've been cooking those dinners since I was 12 so I signed up again this year. I have wanted to say no for the past few years because it's so hard on the girls to have to be there so early but it's not so bad. Besides, it's only for a week and I don't think that that's too much to ask! I honestly LOVE to do the food and am always happy to cook for others so it's nice to be able to do that. Cooking the food is very challenging because I feed the kids and all the workers (about 75 people) on a meager budget of about $200 so I have to be selective in what I make. Last night was homemade chili with nachos and cheese and tonight was homemade mac and cheese with watermelon. The rest of the week will include sandwiches with chips and fruit, hot dogs and hamburgers, chicken and biscuits, and PIZZA NIGHT (courtesy of everyone donating money to fund that). I love to make a dollar stretch and it's fun!

On top of my job, John is in charge of doing the games and recreation portion of VBS so he's really busy the whole night. It's difficult because he usually sleeps until 3 or 3:30 each day but I've been having to wake him up an hour early to get me to up to the church. We don't get home until almost 9 and then he has to leave for work at 10. I feel so bad for him! Thankfully he'll be off tomorrow night and the night after that. Relief is on the way!

So yeah, it's a hot, long, tiring, and exhausting week but it's rewarding and worth all the blood, sweat, and tears. The girls each have a little class that they go to and they're having a blast so thankfully they're not complaining. And if my babies are happy, SO AM I! :-)