Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Christmas Day 2014

Christmas Day started slow and quiet.  I got up early to run before anyone else was awake, and then hung out with Jonah once he made himself known.  We hung out downstairs by the Christmas tree eating and playing, while I sipped on my coffee until we heard Noelle start to stir.

she slept with her new Anna doll

After a late night at my parent's, Noelle ended up in our bed and slept until almost 9:00.  We think this will be the last year of "sleeping in", as we're sure she'll figure out the whole getting to open presents when she wakes up by next year.  She had fallen asleep in the car on the way home and so we just let her sleep in her little reindeer dress she'd been wearing.  No pajamas and no clean diaper. Parents of the year right here!

Once she did get up, I changed her into pajamas that matched Jonah's, because now that we have two littles, they have to match as often as possible. And of course by then it was time to put Jonah down for a nap.  We made our cinnamon buns from a can, and ate those while Noelle opened the last wrapped Christmas book, which I had strategically made sure was the story about Jesus' birth.  Luke read the book, and then we started opening presents.

gotta get the chapstick on her chin

We didn't get anything big for Noelle this year, just small things, but we knew she would be super spoiled by everyone else in our family.  We gave her a few puzzles, a Care Bear blanket, Frozen themed pajamas, and a doll. Luke got her a few things for her stocking, including some Care Bear chapstick, which she is obsessed with putting on.  Once everything was opened, she played with some of her new toys while we cleaned up.

matching jammies

After Jonah woke up from his nap, we headed off to Luke's parent's house to celebrate Christmas with his parents and sister.  We had decided to keep the meal simple since his mom is still recovering from the accident and there were only going to be a few of us, so we ordered Chinese.  Lydia did make us two dishes that she'd had when she lived in Taiwan.  Everything was super yummy, and so much less mess to clean up!

"helping" Jonah open his gift

We exchanged gifts and hung out with his parents and sister for a few hours while Jonah took his afternoon nap.  I loved all my gifts, but I'm really excited about the restaurant gift card and movie tickets his mom gave us to send us on a date once she's feeling recovered enough to watch the kids. And Noelle of course loved all of the gifts, including Jonah's, and all the attention she received.

grandpa helping Jonah open a gift

Also, Christmas seven years ago is when Luke proposed!  I cannot believe how quickly the time has flown, and all the changes that have happened.  He proposed to me on the front porch of his parent's house after we had gone out for a walk to talk and look at all the lights in the neighborhood.  I love Christmas, but being proposed to makes me love it even more!

back at home helping Jonah open his keepsake pocket knife

Monday, December 29, 2014

Christmas Eve 2014

I cannot believe Christmas has already come and gone, but I would call Jonah's first Christmas a success!  I remember thinking last year that we would have an 8 month old with us the following Christmas, and it's amazing just how fast it came.  Aside from the letting him scream himself to sleep at my parent's house on Christmas Eve, he was a pretty happy baby and did well with all the places we went and the amount of people around him.

Jonah and Grandpa

We always spend Christmas Eve with my side of the family.  To me, Christmas Eve is as much Christmas as Christmas Day is.  Growing up we always had a big spaghetti dinner at our house (or out in Seattle if we were visiting my dad's side of the family for Christmas) on December 24th.  My dad grew up doing this, and my mom continued it after they were married even if they didn't have any of his side of the family over. If we ever move away or take over being in charge of Christmas Eve, I will definitely continue serving spaghetti- easy and delicious!  And traditions, I am all about traditions.

somebody ate some yummy veggies for his Christmas Eve dinner

We also always opened presents from our west coast relatives, which we continue to do, and now also open presents from my parents and my siblings since we won't see them on Christmas Day. Almost every Christmas Eve that I can remember, my mom's best friend and her family have come to dinner as well.  Last year my mom and her best friend decided that since all of their kids are grown, we would do a white elephant gift exchange amongst ourselves.  This year the exchange involved my parents, my three siblings, my brother-in-law, my other sister's boyfriend, my parent's exchange student, my mom's best friend and her husband, their two sons, and daughter-in-law.  Luke and I ended up with a game and large drink dispenser for parties.

Noelle doing what she does best

Since Noelle and Jonah are the only two kids, they always get super spoiled.  Everyone, including the relatives on the west coast, gave them presents.  Noelle was awake for gift opening (though she did ask to go home at one point because she was so tired), but Jonah was asleep for the whole thing so we just ended up taking his presents home.  We left my parent's house a little after 10 (so late even for me!) and I was worried that Jonah would be a mess for the car ride home since we would have to wake him up.  But thankfully he did really well, and after I nursed him at our house he went right back to sleep. 

while Jonah was napping

Noelle ended up with a number of things from Frozen, which somehow has become her favorite movie.  She absolutely loves the "princess dress" that her Aunt Ruth gave to her at Thanksgiving, and pretty much wears it night and day.  My mom got her an Anna doll, which Noelle slept with on Christmas Eve, the kids I watch in the mornings got her a Frozen crown and jewelry set, and my mom's best friend got Noelle a Frozen coloring/sticker book. Quite a few of those things have already ended up coming with us to various places.  

 waking up on Christmas morning with her Anna doll. 
 and she also slept in her Christmas Eve dress since she fell asleep in the car

Some of my favorite gifts related to the littles were my matching Toms for me and Noelle from my sister Becky.  I know my days of matching my daughter are numbered! My other favorite was some pictures from my sister Heather.  When my parents were watching the kids a few weekends ago, my sister went over to their house and dressed the littles up in coordinating outfits that she had purchased, and took pictures of them in front of my parent's Christmas tree.  So stinkin' adorable!  I can tell Jonah cooperated better for the pictures than Noelle did, but in the one picture my sister framed, Noelle is smiling and Jonah has a the face of someone who is about to break out in tears.  But he's wearing a bow tie- can't get much cuter than that!

I love living near my family and being able to see my siblings and parents, and I love that Noelle and Jonah get to grow up with family around.  I can already picture future Christmases when they will be older and will hopefully have cousins to play with!

the girls

Friday, December 26, 2014

Jonah: 8 Month Update

How are there only four more months till he turns 1?  I've been trying to focus more on just enjoying my baby as a baby because one day soon he won't be a baby anymore!  Whenever I hold him and dance around with him, I think about how one day he won't let me do that anymore.  And that the next time I'll dance with him will maybe be at his wedding someday.  I'm definitely not a fan of time moving so quickly!

not super cooperative for pictures this time

Height and Weight:  Standing him on the scale he weighs about 14 1/2 pounds, which isn't any weight gain from last month.  But I'm not sure if he weighs enough to measure accurately.  Either way, I'm going to need to work on getting more calories in him!  And not sure on height right now.

Sleep: Two weeks ago we had 3 or 4 nights in a row where he slept through the night!  It was absolutely amazing, and made my 5 a.m. wake-up time a little more agreeable.  Then he had some nights this past week where he cried 2 or 3 times, but then went back down to one time a night.  I would love to get him more consistent with sleep, and a friend recommended the Baby Wise book, so I've started skimming through it when I can to see if it might be a helpful method for Jonah.  I think he would benefit from being on more of a schedule, but it would definitely be an adjustment to our very relaxed, go with the flow life-style.  But he's only this little for so long and eventually won't need naps anymore.

He still naps twice a day, usually 1.5 to 2 hours (occasionally longer) in the morning and about an hour nap in the afternoon.  He goes to bed usually around 7:30 and usually wakes up around 7, but occasionally earlier or later.  He still does not nap when we are out and about so I try to make sure we can be home after a few hours to get him down for a nap.

Eating: He usually nurses when he wakes up, a little bit before each nap, when he wakes up from his naps, and before bed.  It's definitely become more of a struggle to get him to focus on nursing.  Any little thing seems to make him turn his head to look around and see what's happening.  I'm a little worried that my supply is really going to go down even more since he doesn't seem to make much of an effort at nursing.  We're still supplementing so he gets three bottles of formula, which I just upped to 6 ounces in each bottle.  I only give him the bottles after he nurses, but it's almost like he knows they're coming so he doesn't make as much of an effort to nurse.

He gets 2 to 3 meals of food each day.  He loves carrots, sweet potato, banana, pear, and apple.  I've been doing a mix of store bought baby food and making baby food.  He's good about eating the mixed veggies that are from the store, so hopefully I can continue to get him to enjoy his veggies, unlike his sister.

Diapers/Clothing: He's still in size 2 diapers and doesn't really seem too close on growing out of them.  Clothing-wise he's wearing mostly 6 month and 6-9 month stuff.  I can tell that his 6 month sleepers are getting a tad snug so I'll have to put those away soon.  So crazy how fast he's growing! And of course he has 4 Christmas pajamas that we've been cycling through for the past month.  And will continue to wear as long as they fit!

Social/Milestones: This boy is a charmer!  He smiles at strangers who stop to talk to him when we're out and about, and they are only encouraged to talk to him more when he gives them that big two toothed smile!  He does some babbling- mostly dadada, but also some bababa and occasional mamama.  He's pretty much a pro at sitting, and will go from sitting to his hands and knees, and then laying down on his belly.  When's he's laying down on his belly, he can scootch himself around in a circle, and will occasionally have forward or backward mobility, but no all out crawling or army crawl yet.  He's now giving us the challenge of rolling over to his stomach whenever we are trying to change his diaper.  And when he's sitting he will pull himself up to kneeling or standing on Noelle's bed rail or on a toy.

We've left him in church nursery twice, and both times I've been called to come get him.  He is definitely a mama's boy and calms down once I get him.  We're going to have to work on that so that I'm able to sit through an entire sermon.  Someday I'll be able to.  He loves smiling for daddy and watching Noelle, especially when she's moving around.

Likes: He likes standing with assistance to hold on to the coffee table or the table toy that we have. He also seems to prefer being in the ergo when we are out, but also sometimes does well in the front of the shopping cart.  He still likes being outside- even if it's cold.  Sometimes in the morning he'll start to get cranky, but when we go to take my friend's kids to the bus stop, he becomes all smiles and happy.  He also loves sitting up and splashing in the bathtub.

Dislikes: He definitely dislikes being away from mommy.  He doesn't like being left to play with a toy by himself for very long, and some days he does not like being put down unless he is being played with.

Fun things we did: We celebrated his first Thanksgiving!  It was special having the whole Wiedeman family together for it, and he got to spend some time with his Aunt Hannah and Uncle Josh, who he has only seen briefly.  He had a bunch of Christmas parties and a Christmas cookie baking extravaganza to attend.  We went to MOPS and had a couple of play dates, all of which he did pretty well at.

Some pictures from the month:

hanging out with aunt Hannah

decorating his first Christmas tree

 getting fed by Noelle

 wearing some Christmas jammies

sitting in the high chair for the firs time

dressed in his Christmas best for church

Monday, December 22, 2014

A Rudolph Run and Weekend Fun

After the craziness of last weekend, this weekend was nice and quiet.  No parties, no big plans, and we just got to spend time with our little family.  The only thing I had on the agenda was a race that didn't start till 10:00 on Saturday morning.  I slept in till 8:00, and by I slept in, I mean that's how late Jonah slept in.  Once he got up, I nursed him and then got myself ready to head to the race.

It was the Rudolph Run 6K (first time I've ever raced this distance) and I had convinced a friend to run with me.  I left Luke with the littles and headed out to meet my friend.  The race was at a high school in Howard County, and there happened to be a pee-wee football tournament going on at the school so it was a little crazy, but we eventually found each other and headed to the start of the race. We had red blinking Rudolph noses on, which we decided we would get a picture of us wearing them, and then take them off for the race.  But we did get a few compliments before taking them off.

The race ended up being two loops around the same course and partially on grass, which I didn't love. I did, however, love that there were no hills!  My toes never warmed up until after I finished, but I somehow managed to average a 7:30 pace.  Surprise to me! My friend and I hung out for a bit and then decided to go chat over coffee before we headed home to our families.  It was so nice being out for a bit and relaxing!

not happy about trying to crawl

When I got home we got ourselves ready for the day and headed out to do some last minute Christmas shopping.  Target was super crazy and we ended up just leaving.  But we found some fun white elephant gifts at the mall, and bought the few gift cards we needed for people.  Our evening was nice and quiet- bathtime and bedtime routines for the kids (and me since I still go to bed when Noelle goes to bed!)

I want to remember these little quiet evenings that we have as a family of four.  They aren't always easy, especially when Jonah has a short nap or an earlier nap, and it's a struggle to keep him awake until at least 7.  But there are fun moments too.  Turning on Christmas music and dancing around. Doing "Ring Around the Rosie" with Noelle and Care Bear.  Trying to get Jonah to crawl instead of just sprawl his legs out behind him.  Laughing at the funny things that come out of Noelle's mouth. Reading books and watching Christmas movies together.

Christmas Sunday clothes

I can only imagine what next Christmas will look like with two very mobile children, but in the meantime, I'm loving how much fun the toddler and baby stages are.  And if this is it in terms of how many kids God wants to bless us with, I want to enjoy the last "first" Christmas we will have with our Jonah boy.

Friday, December 19, 2014

December Last Year

It was a year ago on December 7 that we found out Jonah was a boy!  With Noelle, we found out during the anatomy scan that we were having a girl.  And with her, I really had no feelings one way or another about what the gender could be.  Jonah, on the other hand, I had a feeling from the moment I found out that I was pregnant that he was a boy.

Heather Boockholdt maternity picture

I believe that every single baby is a gift and wonderful blessing, and our prayers were always that God would keep our baby safe and healthy.  But for some reason, as soon as Noelle was born, I pictured having two little girls someday and so wanted a sister for Noelle.  When we got pregnant again, I was convinced it was a boy since in my head I would have two little girls, and I thought that God would give us the opposite of what my plan was.  And that's exactly what He did- but He of course knows best!

We decided to do something a little different for finding out the gender with baby #2.  During the anatomy scan we had the sonographer write the gender down and put it in an envelope, which I then took to a bakery.  The bakery made cupcakes and filled the inside with blue or pink based on what was in the envelope.  We invited our parents and siblings over for our little "gender reveal" party the next day, and after a quick lunch, it was time for us to bite into the cupcakes.

As the mommy-to-be I wanted to be the first to see, so I got a head start on biting into my cupcake. As soon as I took a bite, I saw the blue and yelled "it's a boy!"  We were all excited, and I think I had convinced most of my family that it was a boy, so no one was too surprised.  I hung out with everyone for a little while, and then went up to our room to let it soak in and have a few minutes to myself.  And I started bawling.

I did not NOT want a boy, but I had so wanted a sister for Noelle.  And I think it was partially hormones, because I felt like I had no control over my crying self.  I hate that I was such a mess, and I love Jonah so much it hurts and would not trade him for a girl for anything!  It did take me a few weeks, but I started to really get on board with having a boy (even though that was what I was so sure he was from the time I got pregnant!)

Heather Boockholdt Photography

Plus now I can say I have a favorite girl and favorite boy.  Until we have a third someday (should God bless us with another), then someone will have to share.  And we will love each one so much!

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Christmas Filled Weekend

It's been a busy month, as usual during the holiday season, but oh so fun to celebrate Jesus' birth and all the joy that goes with it!

This past weekend, we had Luke's work Christmas party, as well as a cookies and cocktails party with some new neighborhood friends.  Luke's work party was on Friday evening, and I almost bailed at the last minute.  It had been a rough day with the kids and my sister was coming to watch the both of them- I wasn't worried about the kids, but I felt bad for my sister! Noelle had been super whiny all day, and Jonah had only had one nap and I figured he would lose it any minute.  But I threw on a nice sweater and away we went.

the whiny girl took an hour long nap on me

Thankfully it was only about 20 minutes away in Clarksville, so I figured we could rush home if Heather sent out an SOS.  Luke's company did a game this year where each employee bought a toy that represented them in some way, and as they were unwrapped, the employees had to guess who had brought it.  And then after the party, all the toys were donated to Toys for Tots- fun for us and fun for the kids!  The food was of course yummy and it was fun to catch up with some of his co-workers.

On Saturday I dropped the kids off at my parents and Luke and I headed to a cookies and cocktails party at a new friend's house in our neighborhood.  We brought cookies to exchange and I tried some yummy apple cider sangria.  It was great being able to meet a couple of other neighbors with little kids, and I got to hear more about the pre-school where we are potentially sending Noelle in the fall. I hope we can continue new friendships!

Then on Sunday we had our "baby Bible study" Christmas party (I call it that because everyone in that group has kids), which included a lot of delicious food and a white elephant gift exchange.  For this exchange, the plan was for each family to bring something that was laying around the house that you didn't want anymore.  We brought a tortilla maker and ended up coming home with an ammo box with some stuff in it.  There was definitely some re-gifting from the year before, as well as from the gift exchange we had been a part of with our other Bible study the week before.  Luke and I had a lot of fun, and Noelle always has a blast being surrounded by kids her age.   We are certainly blessed by each person in the group and we really enjoy seeing how our friendships have grown!

It was a busy, but fun-filled weekend.  And now only one more weekend before Christmas is here!

Sunday, December 14, 2014

O Christmas Tree 2014

I had grand ideas of going out to a tree farm to cut down our own Christmas tree in honor of Jonah's first Christmas, but that definitely didn't happen.  I think with Thanksgiving being later in November and there being less time till Christmas, our weekends filled up quickly with various parties and celebrations.  I wanted to have the tree up for as long as possible, so we did the next best thing- went to Home Depot on a rainy weekday evening to pick one out!

2013 tree

Last year we took almost 18 month old Noelle out to a tree farm with our friends Megan and Joe to cut down a tree, and it was a lot of fun!  The farm was close by, and it was fun to wander around amongst the trees to find the one.  [Sidenote: last year we went tree hunting on the day we had our little family gender reveal party and found out we were having a boy!] We've almost always had a Douglas fir, which we affectionately call Douglas throughout the time it stands in our house.  Last year we ended up putting most of the ornaments on the upper half of the tree to keep out of reach of little hands, and we also had a significant amount of snow the day after we got the tree, which of course made tree decorating feel even more festive.

 me and the littles with some Home Depot trees

When we ran out to Home Depot this year, we debated about whether we should even go since it was raining and we'd be putting a wet tree into the back of the van, but I really didn't want to wait any longer to bring home our tree!  We bundled up the kids, made the five minute drive up to Home Depot, and quickly selected a tree.  Since we were literally the only people out in the little outdoor section of Home Depot, I went and hung out inside with the kids while Luke tracked someone down to help him get the tree ready to go.

Ellie the elf!

Noelle, Jonah, and I mostly wandered around the Christmas section looking at the different lawn ornaments, lights, and other Christmasy things.  Noelle liked picking up the toys, and of course, attempted to ride the child-size Rudolph toy.  Even if it wasn't a classic Christmas tree hunt, it is still a good memory of Jonah's FIRST tree!

a boy and his tree

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Weekend of Christmas Fun

This past weekend was full of Christmas festivities with family and friends.  I started Saturday with a 7 mile run (2nd longest run since Jonah was born!) in preparation for a day of cookie baking.  I definitely wanted to burn as many extra calories as I could with plans to eat cookie dough and sample the different cookies that we were all making!

 "helping" Aunt Becky mix her dough

For at least the last four years, my mom has hosted a day of cookie baking and a cookie exchange at her house.  This year included my mom and two sisters, as well as my mom's best friend and her daughter-in-law and the girlfriend of her other son.  With seven of us making at least two types of cookies, we had a very full kitchen!  We were also trying to figure out how many sticks of butter we had used between all of us, but we stopped counting when my youngest sister said she would be using 15 sticks for her 2 recipes!  I had baked my brown sugar and toffee cookies the day before and pre-made the dough for my pretzel monster cookies knowing that I would probably be preoccupied with kids for a good bit of time.

we like cookies!

I brought the littles with me since I'm pretty sure my sisters look forward to seeing the two of them more than me, and I knew Noelle would have fun "helping" and getting lots of attention.  My dad held Jonah for a little while, and then Jonah took a nice nap in the pack'n'play while I was able to get some of my cookies baked.  It was definitely a fun day, and I came home with a whole lot of cookies, most of which have been distributed to neighbors and Luke's family.

On Sunday, our one Bible study group got together for our annual Christmas party.  We love the fellowship that we have with this group and the relationships that have come out of it.  For a few years after college I really struggled with feeling like I had close relationships outside of my relationship with Luke, but no more!  God has really provided some amazing friends who love Him and have pushed me to grow in my relationship with the Lord.

thank you for the picture, Kristina!

We ate lots of yummy food and did a white elephant gift exchange, which was hilarious as usual.  We ended up with some practical things- a ledge shelf that our friends have had since they got married six years ago and never took out of the box, as well as a box of band-aids with quotes from Shakespeare on them.  Someone also ended up with the signed picture of our friend Johnny (who has since moved away) for the third year in a row.

Kristina got them at least both looking towards the camera

Jonah was kept out way too late that night, and cried the whole drive home and then slept horribly and napped horribly the next day.  But I think we're slowly getting him back on track.  We love that little munchkin, but he does not leave room for a whole lot of flexibility.  BUT I know this little stage will only last for so long and the sacrifice is worth it (or the sleeplessness that results when we keep him awake!)

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Countdown to Christmas

The Christmas season is my absolute favorite time of the year.  As I've grown in my faith, I've come to love that we celebrate the birth of our Savior.  The other stuff- presents, Santa, time with family- is all fun too, but everything is underscored by Jesus!  Especially in 2011 and 2013 when I was pregnant, I felt a tiny bit like I could understand Mary and the joy and expectancy of pregnancy.  And of course, having babies makes me understand even more just how much Christ humbled Himself to be born a helpless babe.

And having a baby and toddler at Christmas makes everything seem new and even more exciting. We bought Noelle a car she could ride in last year and I remember how much fun Luke and I had putting it together the night before, and then watching her get excited about it when she saw it on Christmas morning.  This year I didn't get anything big for Noelle, but I'm pretty sure based on her obsession with Care Bear, that she'll be super excited about the Care Bear sheets I picked up at a Tot Swap, as well as the puzzles we got for her.

Christmas 2013

I also think traditions are really important and since we've been married we've been starting some of our own.  Eating cinnamon rolls on Christmas morning, watching the movie Stardust, and spending Christmas morning with just us are a few.  For our kids, I wanted to give them a special keepsake gift on their first Christmas.  For Noelle we got her a locket engraved with her name, and for Jonah we got a pocketknife engraved with his name.  I hope that these are things they can keep, and maybe even pass down to their kids.

Another tradition I started this year was a countdown to Christmas with 25 books about the holiday.  I purchased most of the books at Goodwill and yard sales, and then wrapped all of them.  Each night starting on December 1st, Noelle picks out one of the books and opens it for us to read.  I have to say I've enjoyed it because it gives us new reading material, even if she does request that I read the book to her three times in a row before bed.

reading Christmas books with Daddy

She's liked all the books, except last night after she opened the book "Here Comes Santa Claus", she kept saying "not dis one" and wanted to open another one.  Luke gave her the option of reading it or going to bed, which she reluctantly agreed to reading the book.  And on the third time through, she had fallen fast asleep. Gotta love toddlers!

I love this girl and starting new traditions with my kids.  I can only imagine how much fun it will be when Jonah is old enough to fight over whose turn it is to open a book.  And of course coming up with fun new traditions as they get older!

Thursday, December 4, 2014

November in Pictures

Aside from our Thanksgiving fun, our November looked like a pretty typical month around here. Play dates, speech therapy, small group get togethers, and time with our families.

Noelle and Zoe take a nap together.

 Jonah mastering the whole sitting up on his own thing.

Forced hugs and selfies with mommy.

Wrapping up baby Jonah.

A failed attempt at taking pictures of the littles in their Christmas clothes.

Thanksgiving and getting to see lots of family!

A much happier Jonah!

Play group and Noelle having her first date with Anderson. (Thanks for the picture, Beverly!)  And Anderson is 1/4 Chinese and Noelle is 1/8 Chinese, but neither one looks a bit like it.

Overall, a very fun month, and now onto my favorite season of all- celebrating Christ's birth!

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Thanksgiving 2014

Thanksgiving this year started with me meeting Luke's sister, Hannah, to run the YMCA 5K Turkey Trot.  Unfortunately we weren't super on top of things and didn't plan on where to meet, so I never found her before the race started.  But we did see each other on the course and then we met up at the end.  It was a fun being able to get out and run with all the other crazy people who like to get up early to pay someone else so they can run.  I've done this 5K two times before, but haven't done it since I was pregnant with Noelle, and I'm so glad Luke's sister agreed to do it with me!

the whole Wiedeman family

We did Thanksgiving with the Wiedeman side this year since all four of Luke's siblings were in town and the whole family hadn't been together since the summer of 2013.  Luke's mom is still recovering from the car accident his parents were in, so all of us "kids" were responsible for various food items. We somehow ended up with the turkey, but my sister has a connection and was able to get it fried for us. Luke made the marinade, and then we passed it off to my sister on Wednesday and she took it Thursday morning to get fried!

Once it was done, Luke picked it up and we headed over to the Wiedeman house, where his siblings were finishing up all the sides and desserts that they were making.  Noelle had a blast being spoiled by her aunts and uncles, and Jonah was a good little babe and napped while we were eating.  All the food was delicious and I ate way too much, but it was so good to be with family.

Jonah's first Thanksgiving

We decided to head out a little bit early and stop by my parents' house so that we could see everyone there.  My brother had just arrived home from studying abroad in New Zealand that morning, and we hadn't seen him since June so we really wanted to be able to at least say a quick hello.  I think they were happy to see us, or at least see Noelle.  That girl is so loved!  She better soak it up before Jonah gets old enough to share some of that attention.

Noelle watching tv while sitting on Uncle Jason's shoulders

Definitely a wonderful Thanksgiving!  I'm so thankful for our little family and for all of God's provision for us.  I'm thankful for everyone's health, and I'm thankful that I get to be a stay at home mom with our two littlest blessings!

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Our First Baby

Three years ago on the day before Thanksgiving I found out that I was pregnant with Noelle.  We had been sticking with our plan of not preventing for about 9 months and I was eagerly waiting for that positive pregnancy test.  I had already wasted quite a few and had told myself I had to go two full months without getting my period before I would use another test.

At the beginning of September I had quit my high-stress job and was on the lookout for a new one. The economy wasn't great, but we had agreed it was time for me to leave a job that I was losing sleep over, and we were trusting God that He would provide for us financially with only one of us working. It was nice being able to catch up on sleep, take care of the house, and I watched my friend's baby girl while she worked a half day on Fridays.  Of course, watching her sweet girl made me want a baby of my own all the more!

Well, the Tuesday before Thanksgiving I went with my dad to pick up my sisters from the airport. My youngest sister had been studying abroad in Australia, and when her semester ended, my other sister flew out so the two of them could travel around.  It was a later flight, and as we were driving back home chatting and catching up, I noticed that my stomach felt off.  It wasn't quite the end of November, but I thought maybe I would go ahead and take a pregnancy test the next day.

Luke and I slept in the next morning with plans for a leisurely day.  As he was hopping into the shower, I pulled out another test preparing myself for the disappointment I always felt with each negative one.  This time though, I instantly got a positive!  There was no waiting the 2 or 3 minutes the test said to wait.  I was so excited and freaking out inside, and flipping through my head trying to figure out how to tell Luke.

I'd had some grandiose plans I had thought of before, but I just couldn't hold my news in!  I whipped back the shower curtain and told him I had a positive pregnancy test.  

His response? "Oh really?"  

I told him I'd had that particular test sitting in the closet for a few months so maybe we should go buy a newer one just to double check.  After I went for a run and got myself ready, we headed to the grocery store to pick up a few things, including more pregnancy tests.  I took one as soon as we got back home, and it was instantly positive again.  I was so beyond full of joy and thankful that God had answered a long awaited prayer.

And now our baby girl is almost two and half years old.  So crazy to think back on that day and see where we are now.  Definitely super blessed!