Friday, February 19, 2016

Our Week

It's been a fun filled week with the littles!  Fun in the simple, every day way of hanging out and having adventures. And by adventures, I mean play dates and going to one of our favorite indoor places- THE MALL! (And most definitely not every moment was fun!)

after nap cupcake with a side of bedhead
Daddy had off on Monday for President's Day so we "slept in" and then hit up Chick Fil A for our free breakfast meals and some play time. On Tuesday we had a snow/ice day so no school for Noelle, and Daddy worked from home (which makes any day SO much better!). By the afternoon, it was sunny and had warmed up quite nicely, so we were able to escape the house to pick up some groceries (we sure know how to party!).

On Wednesday we had a play date with our church's MOPS group at a local nature center, and it was fun to watch Noelle and Jonah explore everything. Some favorites were the toddler room where they could touch everything, the ramp/path through the forest, and of course pushing buttons to go up the elevator. We even got yummy food afterwards with friends before heading home for a nap for Jonah!

Jonah is a teenager, and Noelle's facial expressions- always full of disdain!
After some begging from Noelle on Wednesday, we made our way to the mall on Thursday to do our usual carousel ride, play area, quarter rides, and lunch. The Lululemon store had a stand out in front with water, Kind bars, and flowers for people to take. Noelle loved the flower, and Jonah devoured the Kind bar as we made our way to the carousel. There may have been some spilled milk at lunch, Jonah falling out of the stroller on his face, and then only a short car nap on the way home, but overall, it was a fun morning just me and my babies.

We started our Friday with a play date with our other MOPS group at the home of our group's mentor mom. She has two sheep who bleated their hellos as we got out of the van, and Noelle loved it! She even sang them "Baa, Baa Black Sheep" as we were getting ourselves ready to drive back home. Our mentor mom had her kid's old toys out for all the MOPS kids to play with, and since there was a train set, Jonah was good to go, and Noelle loved the dollhouse and tea set. And I was especially grateful for my time with other mamas!

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Happy Valentine's Day to My Love!

Happy Valentine's Day to my forever Valentine!

I am so thankful that I get to do life with you. That I get to watch you be the daddy to our kids, and that I get to cheer you on in all the amazing things that you do. You work so hard for us- and I love that you've been able to pursue a career that you really enjoy. It's hard to believe that you've been in the IT field for fewer years than you've taught, yet you've already learned SO much!

Thank you for the little things, like filling up the van with gas and bringing me flowers when you can tell it's been a rough day. Thank you for talking to me about Jesus and about sermons, and letting me talk to you about the latest blog posts that I've read about God and motherhood.

Thank you for supporting my love of Starbucks and Chick Fil A. You know I love my coffee! Thank you for allowing me to spend time running, and for doing all the 21 day fix workouts with me. I know I wouldn't have made it through those initial 21 days without your support.

Thank you that we can be so simple and yet have so much fun together- our Valentine's date this year was Noodles and Company for dinner, and then Walmart to pick up fun Valentine's gifts for the littles. And thanks for continuing the tradition of pizza on Valentine's Day! (And for picking me up a salad so I can at least feel like I'm being a little bit healthier!)

Thank you for being my permanent wedding date. And for being my best friend. And for laughing with me when our children are just being extra crazy!

I love you!

Friday, February 12, 2016

Winner Winner Chicken Dinner!

It was just like any normal preschool day, and Jonah and I were on our way to pick Noelle up from school.

Probably 95% of the time we're listening to Noelle's music in the car- aka the CDs that came with her baby genius movies or the Christian music CD she got from Nana. The other 5% of the time we listen to Luke's music or mine. (And 99% of the time, my music is back and forth between the two Christian radio stations in our area. Unless it's Christmas, then it's Christmas CDs on repeat.)

Well, as Jonah and I are driving along, I decide to turn the radio to one of my tried and true Christian stations, WGTS. I've listened to this station consistently for about the last nine years, and as far back as I can remember, they've always had the family name game. The morning, afternoon, and evening hosts each have a boy or girl name, and if your child has that name as their first or middle name, you can call in and share about your child.

And the best part- they treat your whole family to Chick Fil A!

I'm half listening as we're driving, and I vaguely hear that the star of the afternoon is Amanda. Wait, what, did I hear that right? Amanda is Noelle's middle name!

The DJ says the number to call, and I grab my phone, but three numbers in can't remember the rest of the number. I quickly pull into the school parking lot, google the number, and call it. A girl picks up, I tell her my daughter's middle name is Amanda, and she says she'll send me through to the DJ, Becky.

Next thing I know, I'm talking to Becky and totally blanking on how to answer her questions about what my daughter enjoys and how we've been spending our winter days. I think I said something about her watching all the princess movies, and how she loves her little brother sometimes a little too much.

But we got our Chick Fil A gift cards in the mail! So yay for a family date to one of our favorite places!

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Being Vulnerable

Vulnerability. This was the topic of our latest MOPS meeting, and it was a good one.

I think my thoughts on it are a bit scattered, but the over all topic struck a chord with me. We have to be vulnerable in order to build relationships. We have to be real, and share the ugly, hard stuff with others. As humans, we need that space where we can be real, and still be loved, even if real means being a complete mess.

2015 was a hard year for me- lots of ups and downs, hopes built up and hopes dashed to pieces. Feelings of jealousy, bitterness that it wasn't my turn. Being frustrated that I couldn't trust God's plan for us. I feel like I'm fairly open about my desires, but maybe not as open about how the ugly side of me comes out.

Another baby may never happen for us. Or it may just not happen the way I thought it would. I'm wanting it and praying for it.

And God is working in me. He has been so gracious to me in the last few weeks (and always!), really drawing me to Him. He has put it on my heart to pray for the many, many friends and family members who are expecting (four of whom are due any day!), and I feel that in doing so, my feelings have shifted more to thankfulness for all these precious lives that God has blessed my friends with. Some are having their first, very prayed for baby, and others are adding baby #3 or #4!

It still weighs heavy on my heart some days. And God keeps bringing me back to Him, and reminding me that only He can make me happy. God is good, and I am SO blessed!

We've finished our third cycle of clomid, which is the extent of what my GYN wanted to do. Since my cycle came on it's own (no medication to induce it last month!), I don't know if that changes anything about what she will want to do next. We may be pursuing things with a reproductive endocrinologist, or maybe just letting things go for now. I'm just praying for lots of wisdom and peace on what to do going forward. And, as always, God holds the future in His hands.

hands full, heart full
I wasn't sure if I should write this out, but this is me being vulnerable. Sharing the state of my heart. This is where I am in life right now, learning to trust God each day, and knowing that He is good all the time!

Monday, February 8, 2016

Attack of the Stomach Bug

Last week all four of us were taken down by the (self-diagnosed) norovirus. Late afternoon on Wednesday Noelle threw up all over her bedroom floor. I got her changed, sopped everything up, washed it down with cleaning solution, and she fell asleep on my bed. And when I went to get her up a little bit later, she threw up again as soon as she was standing. Soon after, it hit me, and the two of us were down for the count sharing my bed as the "sick bed", while Luke slept in her bed. The worst was when I was puking over the side of the bed into a trash can, and I could hear her start puking next to me. Luke was super amazing and kept the laundry going and cleaned up messes.

Thursday was basically a "let's watch Barney all day" kind of day so that I could sleep/rest on the couch and try to do some more laundry. When Luke came home from work, he said that his stomach wasn't feeling so great, and he was in bed before 9:00- which never happens. Jonah also puked that evening, and apparently at some point in the middle of the night because he woke up with puke on his pajamas. Poor kid! But he handled it so well, and even when he puked on Friday, he would be upset for a few minutes, and then happily go play. Noelle didn't get out of bed until after noon on Friday, and spent the rest of the day curled up on the couch. I was thankfully feeling much better and spent some time scrubbing and wiping down as many surfaces as I could.

On Saturday, we were all still tired, but symptoms were gone. We decided to cancel a get-together we were hosting because we knew some cleaning still needed to be done, and we do not wish that nasty bug on anyone! The talk at pre-school drop-off this morning was how everyone was getting hit with this stomach bug, so it's good to know we're not the only ones. I'm just thankful it moved quickly and that Luke and I weren't hit with it at exactly the same time.

our outing today to replenish supplies
On another note, I have definitely become a super wimp when it comes to the cold. Especially cold weather running. I have gone running 39 times this year, and have only run outside 5 times! At least I'm getting good use out of the treadmill, right? I mean, the massive dumping of snow we got made it impossible for like a week, but really it's the temperatures below 20* that make me dread the thought of leaving the house. Today was the fifth time running outside and I was pleasantly surprised by my pace. I think my body was happy to just go at what felt comfortable, and to embrace the downhill! I really want to find a race to run, but might look for one in the warmer months. And I just need to work on convincing Luke to move south. And then all our friends and family to come join us. (#teamnashville or #thebeach)

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Jonah at 21 Months

Really, we're almost to 21 and a half months, but better late then never. And I so want to capture what our crazy boy is up to and what he's like!

And though we're still three months away from him turning two, we are already deep in the terrible twos! He tells me "no" on a daily basis, and runs away when I ask him to pick something up. And if he does not get his way, or I do something he doesn't want, there's usually a full fledged meltdown. He very much so wants to do many things on his own; it's just a battle trying to get him to communicate that without him whining or crumpling into a heap on the floor. He wants to take off his own shirt, wants to sit on the toddler potty whenever Noelle uses the bathroom, wants to wash his own hands even though he can't reach the water spout in the sink. Little mister independent.

On the flipside, he can also be quite polite. Whenever I give him something, he usually responds with "tank you!" He's usually willing to say sorry when we prompt him to do so after he's done something he shouldn't. I think he's also a little too used to us telling him to say sorry because when Luke told him to say good-night to me the other night, he promptly responded with "sorry". We all laughed, which made him say sorry over and over again. He knows he's a stinker!

He definitely has a quick temper, which is so different from Noelle. It does not take much to throw him into a fit, and Luke and I are going to have to learn how to work with him. I worry because when he's angry he starts to throw things, and I don't want him to hurt anyone else. Even when he was younger, he threw crayons at the library and I walked out in tears because it was my kid hurting someone else. I'm definitely praying for wisdom on that front!

Thankfully, he's generally a good sleeper. Goes to be between 7:30 and 8:00, and wakes up around 7:00-7:30 in the morning. It's very rare that he wakes up in the middle of the night (thank goodness!), and he naps for about two hours during the day around 2:00. He loves to have his crib full of toys, books, and trains, which is nice because sometimes he'll just play for a little while before he starts crying for us.

He's wearing size 4 diapers and 18-24 month clothes. Based on when he stands on the scale, he weighs 25-26 pounds. He will try most foods, but usually doesn't finish anything. He'll want toast in the morning just because Noelle has it, but only takes a few bites. He'll ask for a banana when Noelle has one, and only eats a few bites. Luke is much better about telling him no more food until he finishes what he's been given.

He is saying quite a few words, and even two word sentences. I'm amazed at how much he's able to communicate with us, especially since Noelle was only saying one or two words at this point and signing please, more, and thank you. I did teach Jonah some signs, and even though he says please, he'll still rub his tummy when we remind him to say please.

This kid has one of the cutest smiles I've ever seen. I think he knows he's a little charmer, and I know I'm in trouble! He loves trains, balls, and wrestling with Noelle and Daddy, but he also likes to wear Noelle's princess dresses and high heels. He certainly brings lots of laughter and fun to our family!