Friday, December 28, 2007
Saturday, December 22, 2007
For those of you who have been on our ‘mailing list’ for a few years now you’ll find this year’s update to be rather unusual. With no cross country move to document or major life changing decisions being pondered over; it appears that we lived a very regular life for the past twelve months.
However, in keeping with tradition, our family grew for the third consecutive year. Kathryn Elizabeth moved out of my uterus and straight into our hearts on December 3, 2007. She is growing quite well and spends her time eating and sleeping. We are absolutely smitten with our newest addition and amazed at how our love has grown for Brooklyn and Isabella as well.
Brooklyn’s personality has really begun to emerge in the last couple of months. She appears to love all things rhythmic; dancing anytime music can be heard, singing along and playing her instruments each day. She has been walking since the end of October and really gives Isabella a run for her money. She has a charming mischieviousness about her and a wonderful twinkle in her eye. I am so excited for this year coming up as she begins to talk and let us into her world.
Isabella, what could I possibly say to sum up Isabella? That girl needs her own reality show, she keeps me on my toes everyday. Belle has developed a real love for crafts and baseball this past year. We were blessed to be able to take her to four Jays games this past season and are hoping to do the same next season. She began attending Pioneer Clubs at our church this fall and is enjoying her special night out immensely. My baby has become a true big sister this year, how quickly they grow!
For myself this ‘regular’ year has relaxed and rejuvenated me. Having no stress about major life decisions this year has been such a welcome blessing. I’ve even begun to embrace the life of a stay at home mom; learning about stain fighting and feeding toddlers healthy foods; things I never thought I’d find myself enjoying. I’ve been working from home since July as a transcriptionist. The job really fell into my lap and the work comes in spurts. I have learned a lot through various assignments, making it enjoyable and it fits into our lives perfectly.
Returning home has been a blessing for Nick as well. Being surrounded by so much love and encouragement Nick has been able to refocus his journey on becoming the man God has called him to be. Although there have been many struggles and much to drain his physical energy he has continued to learn the lessons of ‘being’ in Christ this year. As Nick prepares for his accreditation interview at the end of January he is encouraged by his growth in knowledge of the Scriptures and of what being in ministry is really about. Nick has spent time with people from all age categories through different ministry experiences this year and it has been neat to watch him embrace each challenge, not only to complete the task but to learn more about himself in each situation.
Now that we’ve had some time to downshift and revel in familiarity we find ourselves really enjoying the settled life. We look forward with anticipation to the end of January to know if we’ll continue to settle in here for another year of ‘regular’ life or if we’ll be hopping back on the roller coaster we’ve been used to in previous years.
We’d like to thank everyone for the support you’ve given us over the last year. Whether you’re near or far: whether you’ve been able to support us with hands open or folded; we greatly appreciate your encouragement and love. We trust that this letter finds you happy, healthy and enjoying the holiday season!
Until next year, warmest wishes
Wednesday, December 12, 2007
This fall we enrolled both girls in their respective classes Parents and Tots 3 and Parents and Tots 1. We all got up early and headed to the pool on Saturday mornings. Me and Brooklyn would hang out and eat breakfast while Nick and Belle did their lesson. Then we would switch kids. It was a great time of individual bonding. I was sad when it ended the last week of November. We will probably enroll the kids again in the fall, but it wont be the same. The next class Isabella enters is one without parents. I"m not sure she'll be ready for that in the fall, we'll have to see.
Both kids learned a lot of new skills and had a super fun time. Unfortunately there aren't any pictures of it. Not because I didn't bring my camera, not because I wasn't snap happy and ready to document this precious time. The lack of pictures is due to the state of our society in that no one can take pictures in a public pool here, just in case you're a pedophile. Totally sucks that I can't share the way Brooklyn's eyes light up when she is in water, or the way Isabella throws up her hands in victory when she emerges from the water after going down the slide. Totally sucky that I wont be able to share that with them either, but I'll hold those memories dear in my heart, a photo album not open to those with dishonest intentions.
Saturday, December 08, 2007
I went to the hospital on Monday morning to be induced which was the original plan. I had told my doctor that I would love to not have to be hooked up to an IV in the process this time around as I truly, truly hate getting an IV. So we decided to go with Cervidil to start and see how the day would go. At 9:00am I was 2cm dilated, just like I had been for the past few weeks. At noon my doctor came back and checked on me and I was still at 2cm. Absolutely no change at all. The monitors said I was having regular contractions, but I wasn't feeling them. Nick and I had spent the morning talking and watching 'Knocked Up' on our portable DVD player trying to keep the mood of the day light. After the doctor's noon visit I totally broke down. I just couldn't believe I had been sitting there all morning and my body was doing nothing, absoultely nothing, even with drugs to help it along. To add a little insult to injury there was a lady in the next birthing room screaming to high heaven and I was sure it was going to be a day straight out of Friends, (you know the one where everyone and their dog has a baby while Aniston is in labor.) I excused myself to the bathroom and had a good little cry. Then I put on a smile and headed back to the bed to watch another movie. This time we chose Pirates of The Caribbean, secretly hoping to drown out the laboring woman.
My doctor was supposed to return at 5:00 to check on my progress, but got sidetracked and arrived shortly after 6. I had finally made it to 4cm!! We decided to break my water and wait until 8:00 at which point my doctor would return and hook me up to the pitocin. My doctor when home, minutes away. The laboring woman in the room next to me finally accepted an epidural.
As soon as my water was broken I could feel the contractions I had been having all day and they steadily got more intense. They were coming right on top of each other and lasting about 90 seconds each time. Since we had had such an emotionally exhausting day I told Nick that if this was how intense 4cm was going to be I would need a shot of morphine, just to stay in the game mentally. Now Nick is in the delivery room to talk me out of drugs unless even he thinks I need them. He immediately went to get the nurse. She said I could have the morphine only if I was still at 4, and I was. She returned with the morphine and I rolled to my side, got the shot and breathed a sigh of relief. I was informed it would take about 15 minutes for the morphine to kick in. It was about 6:50 at this point.
I had three or four more contractions that were steadily stronger with a lot of pressure and I began to lose it. In retrospect I should have known I was already fully dilated, but having been told seconds before I was at 4cm I was completely convinced I was having a bowel movement at the most inappropriate time and it was going to kill me before I had the baby. :) In most ladylike fashion I explained to Nick that I was dropping the mother of all bombs and could he please get the nurse so I could be helped to the bathroom to retain my dignity.
The nurse arrived and I rolled to my back and began to roll to my other side to exit the bed when I was gripped by the python that is labor and could not move. The nurse calmly said, 'why don't we take care of this here' and had me assume the usual position to check my nether regions, and all of a sudden two crazy sentences were screamed;
'STOP PUSHING RIGHT NOW!' and 'I'M NOT DOING ANYTHING I CAN STOP!'
The nurse told me to start panting in order to stop pushing, while she put her hand on the baby's head and pushed her back in a bit and held her there. The nurse started calling for another nurse, my doctor had already been called. No help came so my nurse had Nick run out to the hall to get the delivery table, (a table on which is all the stuff needed to cut the cord et cetera). As soon as Nick was back in the room she moved her hand and let me push the baby out. Poor Nick got the doctor's view of our baby entering the world which he never, ever wanted to do.
Our baby let out a single cry and then was quiet, the rest of the world was chaotic enough. The second nurse entered the room and calmly mentioned that perhaps 'we should move the cord from around the baby's neck before we cut it'. Gotta love the calm ones.
Our baby entered the world at 7:05. Our doctor entered the room at 7:06. The morphine kicked in at 7:07. And we became a family of five. Kathryn Elizabeth Franks moved out of my uterus and right into our hearts.
I was moved down to a recovery room around 8:00 and from what I can remember of my drug induced haze the loudly laboring woman was delivering at midnight when they brought me Kathryn to feed her. I'm not sure when she had that baby, but I still heard her screaming at 2:00am.
I am thankful that once my body gets into labor it goes so quickly, but I wouldn't mind getting there without waiting in a backless gown all day.
We chose Kathryn Elizabeth purely because we think it sounds nice and old soulish. We will be going with Katy or Kat as short forms, but not Kathy. During our conversation Nick pulled the baby name book out and we looked it up. Kathryn means 'pure' and Elizabeth means 'pledged to God'. Again I am amazed at how perfect a name we chose for our daughter without even meaning to.
This pregnancy was quite a surprise to us and it took some getting used to. We had our ups and downs while we waited for this baby to be born and in total honesty it took up until just a few weeks ago for us to be truly excited about adding another member to our family right now. But, every good and perfect gift is from above, and Kathryn truly is a gift. God gave her to us in his timing, which was of course perfect, and we are both smitten and absolutely giddy about our most recent addition. The only appropriate response is to daily offer her back to him, to acknowledge each day that her life is a gift to us and for him to do with as he wills. Kathryn truly is our responsibility to purely pledge back to God and to raise her up to know him and serve him.
Tuesday, November 27, 2007
We have plans/activities scheduled for the rest of the weekend and then Nick has to work on Monday and Tuesday so choosing the day this time around is proving rather difficult. I know that should this happen naturally we will be thrilled about it whenever it happens, but in choosing the date there is a sense of making sure it works with life, and a small smidgen of hope that labor will begin on it's own the longer we wait.
However, I do need to be done being pregnant. I know, I know, please hold back all your 'how could you be so selfish to chose your own comfort over your baby' comments should you be urging to spew them forth. My physical limitations and maladies impede my ability to take good care of the children I already have, it's time to be able to bend at the waist again and pick up my 13 month old babe who needs some snuggles.
So, somehow there should be a post up here by Tuesday about our new little one. I may not post much before then because sitting is really. not. comfortable. And I have given myself long to do lists each day to keep from going insane. Like baking 300 cookies, which I'm off to do now.
Thursday, November 22, 2007
Here are the rules : Link to your tagger and post these rules on your blog. Share 5 facts about yourself on your blog (some random, some weird). Tag 5 people at the end of your post by leaving their names as well as links to their blogs and then let them know they are tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.
1. I have been on two blind dates with guys I "met" online. Neither one was worth the time.
2. I have a tattoo and, once I am done having children, plan on getting another one on my lower back. Great motivation to put down the Pringles.
3. My bicycle was stolen many, many years ago. I think my second year of college, so 2000 I think. I've never replaced it even though I often wish I owned a bike.
4. I would love to do the Amazing Race, (surprise, surprise), but it's honestly the only reality tv show I would like to be on. Game shows are another story!
5. I have faithfully watched ER since it's pilot episode. I fell for George and I watch every week waiting for his return. Just kidding, it's just a show I love and will watch until it goes off the air. Even when I lived at college and we weren't allowed tv's I still went home to watch it or at least set a tape for it.
Now I tag Will, Tara, Mary, Angela, and Kelly. Sorry if you've been double tagged, I didn't see anyone else tagging y'all though.
Monday, November 19, 2007
Every night before Belle goes to bed we read a story to her. She loves that part of the day and has her favorites. The Maple Leafs book, the Ballet book and anything about "Clippers" (aka Clifford) right now. We read them to her and then say prayers and tuck her in. The other night Brooklyn joined in before she headed to bed. She shares Belle's love of books, sorta. Belle loves the stories, Brooklyn loves how they taste.
I think it's safe to say that the girls love the weather though. We only played outside for about 25 minutes this day as both of them rebelled against hats and mitts. (We have sniffly noses as a consequence!). I have a great video of Brooklyn walking, but am having issues uploading it here today. She is walking everywhere, and quite quickly. The only way to slow her down is to put shoes on her! They trip her up just a bit.
Isabella is working on learning to ride a tricycle. She hasn't gotten the concept of peddaling and spends most of the time with her feet on the ground just 'walking' it. But, with practice she'll get the hang of it.
I'm sure there will be many more days of outside play this year, which is one of the perks of living out East. The days are few that we can't go outside. Doesn't mean we make it out everyday, but it's nice to have that option. I'll still be hoping for a White Christmas, there are some things you should get no matter where you live!
Sunday, November 11, 2007
We got our character assignments a few days before the party so we could learn the basic background information. I really did try to learn my part, but I woke up on Saturday just feeling trashed and definitely not up to "acting". You can imagine my surprise/chagrin when I walked into the party to be handed my 'lines'' and 'inside scoop' for the first scene and learned that I was the murderer! I so did not feel up to the challenge, and while I'm sure no one will be asking me to join Community Theatre I did well enough that no one even suspected me.
I found it so much harder to be someone other than me than I thought I would. Luckily it appears I'm pretty good at deflecting, my saving grace indeed! Since no one accussed me of the murder I was crowned the winner. There was even a prize, I now get to be the host of our next Murder Mystery night, and there will be another!
Wednesday, November 07, 2007
Isabella seems a little more intune with the idea that there's a baby in my tummy this time around. She climbs up on my lap and puts her hands on my belly and tries to wait to feel kicks and moving. She says hello to the baby every now and then as well. She didn't really do that when I was pregnant with Brooklyn.
I wonder how the adjustment will go for them when the new baby arrives. Isabella handled it so well last time that I'm not feeling anxious or worried, just curious. Moments like these with the doll make me happy to know that our new baby is going to be welcomed and loved by everyone in our life, no matter how old they are.
Monday, November 05, 2007
After doing all the cooking I then had to organize my freezer so everything would fit. And what's the fun of organizing the top of the fridge freezer only? I then moved on to the deep freeze. Some deep freezes do become catch-alls, but not ours as it is housing a zillion burgers/sausages/hotdogs left over from some church events this summer. Should anyone want to BBQ in the middle of the winter- we're your hook up.
Upon completing my organizing I then had to write the menu. No simple date and meal in the square, not for this overly organized fool. I also had to write if I had already made it or if I would have to buy anything for it, you get the idea. I did stop short of color coding everything.
Upon this fascinating night of organization I began to realize that I am a hardcore organizer. And in a totally quirky way. For example, I don't like loose change, in the LOOSE CHANGE JAR. And I don't like cluttered junk, in the JUNK DRAWER!
I like to be organized and it's true that my lack of blog posts is because I've been on an organizational bonanza around here. It's taking a long time to get the house back in order since the implosion of "Sciatica Attacks Week", but it's also good to tap into who I really am and do the job the way I want it to be done.
Sunday, November 04, 2007
While I was convicted for about a minute about the fact that I was actually cheering for George's marriage to end so he and Izzy could get together, I quickly got over it. I mean, they're fictional characters, no one is really getting hurt, that justifies it, right!?!
This week I was struck by one exchange that got me thinking. When Izzy comes down to talk to George and claims she isn't 'hardcore', using Christina as her 'hardcore' example. If you didn't watch the episode, I can't explain the whole exchange, you'll have to download it and watch it. I was just really struck, (I already used that word but I suffer from pg brain), by what she did and how in fact I would define her as 'hardcore'.
I got to thinking about the women I compare myself too, the 'hardcore's' of the SAHM world. Am I enough Martha Stewart? Enough June Cleaver? Enough health-conscious-environment-friendly-creative-mind-building-body-challenging super woman?
And then a better question hit me, do I even want to be?
The thing for Izzy was defining what 'hardcore' was for her. I would put it in the words of saying she that she's 'hardcore' heart, what do I desire to be 'hardcore' at and am i? Do you know what you want to be 'hardcore' at and are you?
It's kinda like that tombstone question, what would you hope others will inscribe on your tombstone after you've passed away? What do you want your legacy to be? When your children are making scrapbook pages of days with you, what do they write, what moments are important? Are you 'hardcore' you?
Wednesday, October 31, 2007
Wednesday, October 24, 2007
Isabella also found the sweetest treasure in the bag- rain boots. She has begun this trend of not wearing any pants after her quiet time in the afternoon, she just decides she's done with them for the day. She must, however, wear these rain boots. Yesterday it actually rained here and she got to wear them outside, Isabella is officially the luckiest girl in the world.
Brooklyn is loving the new clothes as all of hers were getting a tad bit tight and I hadn't dug out what Isabella had outgrown just yet. It's good to have pants that go all the way to your ankles, especially when you are now walking and so people notice when your pants are too short!
You read right, Brooklyn is on the move. She's taking up to five steps at a time right now and hates to be sitting. She must stand all. the. time. It's exciting but she's already been so active, I have no idea how I'm going to keep up with her. Isabella is going to have to start watching out too because Brooklyn doesn't let anything stand in her way!
There were a couple questions after my last post, and so I don't forget to answer them:
Yes I did make the banner myself. I took the picture way back in July and finally got it done. Yay for photo editing programs!
RMAOH= Random Moments At Our House
Tuesday, October 23, 2007
Yesterday while the girls were down for the afternoon nap/quiet time I spent the better part of two hours rescuing my pantry. I'm sure it's been in disarray for a bit longer than just last week, but I sure didn't notice it until then. Isabella often goes into the storage closet on her own to get apple juice or a snack. She went in this week and I had to rescue her!
After my cleaning and organizing was all done I felt pretty good about it. Upon Nick's arrival home from work I learned the difference between 'clean' and 'tidy'. When you tidy, everyone notices. When you clean you're the only one who knows unless you point it out.
I was super glad to discover that I hadn't bought any groceries we didn't need. Unfortunately I didn't find the VCR remote. I think it's time to give up hope on that one, it's swimming with the alligators.
Monday, October 22, 2007
I've been starting off my days with a bowl of hearty oatmeal. Yum. And a nice cup of tea. It fills me up splendidly right now and once I'm an all consuming breastfeeder it won't be hard to add some fruit to the mix for extra calories. I had totally forgotten how much I love a bowl of warm cereal in the morning. I sit here at my computer and do some blogging/message boarding/surfing while eating my breakfast in the quiet of the morning.
Since it's been ten days I've come to the realization that I do not read enough blogs to have new reading material each morning. I'm okay with that, but it leads me to my 'Question of the Week'. What other sorts of sites, (feel free to leave the addys), do you surf on a regular basis?
Friday, October 19, 2007
Wednesday, October 17, 2007
The women at our church are the first to try the program, though the hope is for it to spread church wide and touch not only men and women but families as well. It surprisingly easy and hard at the same time and after only two weeks of being in the program I can already sense a change.
We've all been segmented into small groups; some were chosen and some were set up by the organizers. We've committed to read a certain passage of Ephesians five times a week and after reading it just sit and listen to God for a few minutes. Then journal, in just a sentence or two, what God said to us through the passage. The next week it's a different passage as we make our way through the whole book of Ephesians. Once a week we get together in our small groups and share. We share the blessings and challenges God has placed before us through that reading, and what He has been saying.
It's been such a neat experience already for me. To have joined up with three friends, whom I feel like I'm now really getting to know. Instead of just saying 'fine' when asked how we are, we now get to share what we're really thinking. Did we spend the week feeling encouraged by God's words? Did we yell at him and wrestle with what the words were speaking? Did we actually carve out five sessions of time to spend with God?
Such a cool thing to Jog with a friend. When they're out of breath and can only say what really matters. When they're sweaty with pit stains, but hey, so are you. When you all desperately need some water and you're refreshed together. When you're jogging up that hill and all you can do is groan because seriously this sucks, but at the end of the run you know you'll feel great.
Saturday, October 13, 2007
Brooklyn has really startled me over the last month. It seemed that she thought Isabella was the best reality show ever and could watch her every minute of every day not needing to do anything to compete. In the last 30 days she has learned the actions to a few songs we regularly sing, learned to blow whistles, get to standing from sitting on the floor, initiate playing peek-a-boo, she laughs so heartily and this afternoon she even took her first steps! It's amazing to me how much she has learned in such a short span of time, not only over the last year but even in just the past few weeks. I worry so much about her missing out on being 'babyed' since the new baby will be so close in age to her, but time and time again she has proven her strength- both physical and mental. I know she'll shine in a middle sibling role.
For her birthday we went to Andrews Scenic Acres with some friends. When we made the plans it was significantly warmer than when we went, but our friends stuck it out with us and I think had a pleasant time. Then we came back to our house for pizza and cake, some hanging out and once the kids were in bed the girls managed to kick butt at some Wii.
Thanks so everyone who came out for the party. Even though it was cold, and it's hard to keep little ones entertained in the evening. Thanks to everyone for giving of your time to come hang out and celebrate Brooklyn, we greatly appreciate it.
Tuesday, October 09, 2007
I thought alot about why I blog and why I read blogs over the weekend. While there is the catching up and watching people's kids grow aspect; there is also something different that keeps me reading and writing. Just a few weeks ago I stumbled upon this blog and a post entitled "Surprise is not a big enough Word" while up in the middle of the night unable to sleep. I can't explain why but this post just put me at ease with so much guilt I had been carrying around. I don't want to sound full of myself, I do mean this with the utmost humility, but I write about my struggles on here and how I am working to overcome them quite honestly. I like to think, what if someone else facing a similar struggle can read these words and they can help? For that reason alone I wont go private.
However, since mrcds doesn't seem to feel the need to stop commenting I will be adding the comment moderator so I have to approve the comments before they show up. I'm not a fan of this option, but that's the way it's going to be because none of you great people should have to read this dribble.
I'm not sure if you may be saying to yourself "That's great Amanda, but how are you going to deal with the emotional smut still being put on you by mrcds as you'll still have to read their comments?" Well if you are, this is how I'm hoping to deal with that.
In the last comment posted by mrcds they stated: "Not to be mean but have you ever considered that I may be someone you know just trying to point you in a different direction. If I didn't care then I wouldn't comment. You do know me and I just can't face you and share the things I feel.". There are several options as to how I can react to this;
1. Do you really know me or are you trying to mess with my head by stating this?
2. If you do know me, do I consider you a friend? If I do consider you a friend then we need to have a coffee because friends don't treat friends like this. If you really do know me you'll know this is not the firs time I've stood up for what I believe in the face of opposing opinions. You know that I can handle talking to you in person.
3. If you do know me and we just 'know' each other then perhaps I can share a bit more with you. Maybe something about the language I use is a bit confusing to you as my intention in writing should not be for you to think any of those things you think.
So, mrcds, no one can see my comments left by you any longer. Let me know who you are and we can work out our differences, or at least part ways with a bit of closure.
Thanks again for all of the positive feedback, and especially to the first time commenters, I really appreciated it. I will be back in a few days once I'm not quite so fragile over these comments and back in my usual bloggin style!
Thursday, October 04, 2007
It turns out I am some kind of special and Anonymous could not leave me alone. In fact this person felt the need to hide behind a fake identity and leave another dispicable comment on my blog:
Monday, October 01, 2007
Nick has chosen a boy name that he loves, and I like it. It doesn't send shivers down my spine, but neither did Isabella's name, until I met her. So I guess we have the boy side of things taken care of.
There is potential for another girl and so I must consider those options as well, except I can't think of any! For me how a name sounds is just about as important as what it means as you can see from the other names we've chosen.
I've been trying to think of what meaning goes best with this babe's life thus far. I tried looking at online baby name finders, but that was rather difficult. I think the phrase I would use to sum up what I want the baby's name to mean is 'a change of perspective'. I wonder where that search will take me.
Sunday, September 30, 2007
You may recall me mentioning that we're decorating the kid's bedrooms and that 'after' pictures should already be up. They should be and aren't, so here's a progress update shot. The room started off plain white with dusty rose carpeting. We've gotten really far, eh? Just kidding. The walls have been painted, but need a lot of touching up, (two year olds helping paint is a cute theory). We did the walls in a light pink, with dark pink stripes up about 3 feet. There is a border going in and then some of my decorative touch to turn the room from blah to princess pretty. We've also done the first coat in the nursery, but that's all. Hopefully we'll have it finished before I go away at the end of the month.
Total sidenote- I am going away at the end of October! The ladies retreat is written in pen on my calendar and Nick has booked the weekend off. This will be my first weekend away from the kids since Brooklyn was born, I am so ready for a break!
The break will be much deserved after the October we have on the go. This weekend Nick and I sat down to plan when we will have Brooklyn's first birthday party and discovered that at least one of us is already booked every. single. day. of October. How nuts. We did some swapping and will be able to have a birthday party for her which is exciting as it is an important day.
The fullness of the calendar has put a bit of a damper on my enthusiasm though. I love being busy and every day that flows by quickly right now is a blessing, but I also love being spontaneous and when you're booked solid a month in advance there isn't much time for that. A friend reminded me this week that I can make it because I'm creative. Hopefully that will lead to a month of fun, spontaneous, scheduled fun!
Friday, September 28, 2007
Isabella has done fabulously well with the potty training gig so far. She rarely has accidents, and when she does it's usually because I'm tied up with Brooklyn and can't help her with a tricky waistband or something. Every now and then we put a Pull Up on her for a car ride that involves one of the 400 highways as a 20 minute drive can turn into two hours on them. She'll use the toilet at people's houses, at stores, at baseball stadiums. It really has gone a lot better than I anticipated.
As long as you're just talking about peeing.
There's something about pooping on the toilet that Isabella just isn't digging. She'll hold it in all day until we put on her Pull Up for the night and then within minutes she'll have taken a dump. Or you can watch her working on a doozie and so pick her up and take her to the toilet to finish the deed, but she'll just stop. We make sure to sit with her in the bathroom while she's trying to poo and if she has an accident we try to explain that she's not in trouble, but perhaps she could try to get the toilet next time !?!
It's not like I'm at my wits end or anything. Wiping one poopy bum a day isn't the end of the world by any stretch of the imagination. And Brooklyn only poops once a day too. Two poopy diapers a day isn't that bad either.
I know that Isabella has two more falls before she can attend kindergarten so we have a fair bit of time to work on the potty training thing, but with my sensitive sense of smell and occasional naseousness I really would like to be done with the bum wiping.
I just remembered what newborn poop is like. Aw, poop.
Tuesday, September 25, 2007
We went from 3 to 3x's and as you can see by the picture they're noticeably larger.
It got me thinking what a difference two pounds makes in a lot of different situations. What a difference two pounds makes to the health of a premature babe. What a difference two pounds makes to someone struggling to lose, or gain, weight. What a difference two pounds of food makes to a starving family. What a difference adding two pounds makes to a workout. What a difference lifting two pounds makes to someone shaking under a load.
Two pounds sounds almost insignificant but when you really think about it, it's rather large. Just as most of the small things in life are really bigger than they seem at first. For example, I never thought I would learn life lessons from folding underwear!
Monday, September 24, 2007
Her curiosity continues to grow each day and her questions and imagination continue to catch me off guard. I am astonished at the number of times a day she asks to go to school. When I tell her she's not yet old enough she grabs her keys and this toy she has that looks like a lunch box and heads to the door anyway. She stands at the front door for a bit and then comes down the hallway stating; "Honey I'm home, I had a great day!".
This is her trying to get in her bedroom while Nick paints the tall parts. Climbing was a little too painful for her. She has since figured out how to push out the bottom part and crawl under.
Brooklyn will be one in mere weeks, isn't it crazy? She has begun to develop a sense of humor that is uber cute. It's not giggley and hamish like Isabella's but more subtle and witty. She knows when she's doing something cute and eggs you on to laugh with her eyes. She's climbing well, cruising well and will walk beside you holding one hand. She sleeps so peacefully all night and two naps a day, (when it fits our schedule, one loooooong one when it doesn't). The only skill I think she is 'behind' Belle in is learning to use a spoon. I think I've mentioned before that Brooklyn is not a tidy eater. She really has no use for a spoon. But she inhales everything. I am pretty sure she actually ate more than me at supper yesterday, and she always eats her portion and what Belle leaves behind. I'm curious to see what her weight will be at one year, I'm thinking we hit the 'triple her birthweight' expected, (roughly 21 lbs).
This week Isabella tried pronouncing the word 'particularly'. She uses it in context and it cracks me up. 'I like my socks, paticularly the blue ones." I can hardly wait for them to have conversations with each other! I'm sure they'll be waxing eloquent far before I'm ready.
Saturday, September 22, 2007
Friday, September 21, 2007
This week while we were in the midst of the program shift the time was filled with a segment of a DVD series featuring Beth Moore. What a great speaker! Granted, my head hurt a bit from the video as in her enthusiasm it felt like she was yelling the entire time, but I really enjoyed the session.
Especially the line where she said:
'When we trust don't we so often say; God I trust you to do what I say.......... in Jesus name!'
Lately I've been thinking about trust and faith. As you know I began a job as a transcriptionist in July. I am an independant contractor for a firm. I have been given three hours of work in the last six weeks. This does not pay the bills. And so I struggle with the line between trust and irresponsibility. I'm just not sure where it is and as far as a 'feeling' on this issue lately I'm not feeling anything at all. But it's a struggle nonetheless. Should I be looking for another job? Or do I continue to be faithful to do work when it's provided and life as usual when it's not? It's a hard call for me. In the past I've always assumed that the answer is to go out and find another job guaranteeing the bills would be paid. When I talked to hubby he said maybe the reason we keep circling back to this place is because we haven't truly trusted God. We get close to not paying the bills and then find a solution ourselves.
And Beth Moore had so many poignant things to say on the topic. Like how we trust God to do things our way, not really his way, just the solution we can think up.
It's been a very challenging week for me to contemplate this. Still not sure where the line lies between faith and irresponsibility. Still knowing that God is able, but not sure that I don't need to do something in there.
Monday, September 17, 2007
This pregnancy has been quite weird for me in several ways. The major one being that I have been pregnant forever. Can anyone remember when I posted that first ultrasound picture? I don't blame you if you can't, wasn't it sometime in the late 1900's? I am truly amazed at how I daily marvel at how quickly Brooklyn has grown from newborn to one-next-month and at the same time this pregnancy has most definitely surpassed it's expiry date.
However, on Thursday I went to get my RhoGAM shot and I had to go to the hospital to do so. I should have left early in order to deal with the assanine registration process at our hospital, but I put it off over and over. There was nothing in me that wanted to listen to other women labor. Finally I got to the hospital and they sat me in an empty delivery room. There I sat in the rocking chair looking at the bed all set up for the next laboring woman and the baby warmer there for the new babe. I started to get so nervous and tense and anxious. I am so ready to no longer be pregnant, but I'm not so much looking forward to the process of ending it. Luckily L&D was completely empty. Completely, as in not a single laboring woman, not a single newborn babe. The recovery beds were full of people from other wards all definitely beyond their procreation days. It took just shy of an hour for them to enter my name into a computer, go to the pharmacy to get the shot and come in to greet me. Then 30 seconds for them to stick me with the needle and send me on my way.
I have a love hate relationship with hospitals.
Another weird thing for me is that I'm totally nesting. I did not nest at all with either of the others. Possibly that was because we had major moves during both of my previous pregnancies, I don't know. There are little sticky note lists in each room about what must be accomplished in the next 10 weeks and we're working hard around nap times to decorate the girls rooms. I am actually looking at the calendar and scheduling time to have Nick move our major appliances so I can clean behind and under them. It's a bizarre thing for me.
Other than that it's pretty much pregnancy as usual. I have very mixed emotions about our third baby. I am totally excited for the possibility. I love that someone new will be joining our family, that we'll be able to snuggle a newborn again, that I get to make baby announcements and get all 'Anne Geddes Holiday Edition'. I'm excited to see Belle and Brooklyn welcome a new little person into our lives. It is very exciting. But on the other hand I so desperately want our next baby to be a boy. Both of us really, really do. I know that a healthy baby is the ultimate gift, and I don't want to belittle that in any way- I will be so content no matter what gender our baby is. It just might take me a few days post birth to get there. I was joking with a lady on Sunday that the real reason you can stay in the hospital after the baby is born is so that you can cry about whatever without having to entertain guests. Whether it be the birth going the completely opposite direction from your birth plan, or welcoming your third girl (ohmygosh the estrogen!), to the world. By the time the release you, you're all giggly and smiley and excited about this little person. I was a little shocked when she nodded in complete agreement. So, I don't think it makes me an awful person to admit that I will need a minute or two if we have another girl.
I think my computer time must be about up because the muse for this post is kicking me rather hard as if to say; "stand up lady I need a stretch!".
Saturday, September 15, 2007
One of the greatest traps of being a woman is the compare game. And we all do it. Most of us probably do it on a regular basis. But we don't talk about it. We walk around pretending that we don't or saying honest things followed by a zillion giggles so that no one else feels uncomfortable.
And honestly that bugs me. I would much rather get to know the heart of each person I've ever known. To get to know you without your make up on, in your sweats, gobbling a pint of ice cream. I would rather get to know you at 3:00 am while soothing a colicky baby. One of my relational cravings is intentional personal relationships, and you can't get those if you're not honest and vulnerable.
So, my honesty is hopefully a door. A door to get to know you honestly. And that's all.
Wednesday, September 12, 2007
To be loved means to be chosen. The sense of being chosen is one of the very best gifts love bestows on the beloved. When I am chosen I am seen as unique. When I am chosen I am recognized as someone who has something to contribute. When I am chosen it means somebody wants me. I am not isolated or unconnected, I belong. That's what God does when he chooses, and he chose each one of us. But in our fallen world being chosen almost always means being chosen at the expense of someone else. It makes choseness competitive and the consolation prize envy.
Envy is the toxic bile of those who believe themselves to be unchosen. Envy is disliking God's goodness to someone else and dismissing God's goodness to me. Envy is desire plus resentment. But I cannot stop being envious simply by trying hard. Envy can only be healed when I come to live as one who has been chosen by God who loves each of his children with infinite uniqueness.
God holds out a certain joy for each of his children. There is however one way to lose your joy. To compare your gifts and feel the sinking sensation that the greater another person's gifts or talents the more you are diminished.
If you offer your gifts and humbly receive the gifts of others your joy will be made complete. If you don't you go through life wishing for the joy that belongs to others, you will end up feeling no joy at all.
When you notice envy or comparision rising up within you, don't berate yourself. Instead remind yourself that you are fully loved by God- no one else's achievements or life can diminish that.
From Mere Christianity: "We get no pleasure out of having something, only out of having more of it than the next man. We say people are proud of being rich, or clever or good looking but we are not. They are proud of being richer, or cleverer or better looking than others. It is the comparision that makes you proud, the pleasure of being above the rest."
Comparison kills community.
What would it take for you to be completely at peace with how God gifted you.
Envy doesn't keep me from doing things. I still volunteer, have people over, attempt to make new friends, I get up and keep trying after I fail. But envy keeps me from feeling joy. No matter how clean and welcoming my home is, it feels insignificant because someone else owns my home. When I go out with friends and I'm not the one who gets complimented I feel self conscious and nervous. When someone begins to share how God has blessed them materially I actually doubt His love for me instead of rejoicing in their blessing. I don't envy because I don't think the others deserve what they are getting. I don't envy because I want what they have.
I envy because I long to be chosen and I still view chosen as a fallen human. I crave to be the popular girl, not just the popular girl's invisible friend. I desire to have "it" as defined by the world. I envy because my mind is having trouble being renewed and my attitude re-written by God. Confession: There's nothing that I wouldn't give to walk into a room full of people, full of confidence in who I am and approach strangers simply because I believe there is value in them knowing me. I used to think that was an issue of self esteem, but am beginning to think it may be an issue of envy. Either way the path to freedom is love; and not love in the movies or even the love of a spouse. But His love. A love I will never fully comprehend but am hoping to embrace.
Thursday, September 06, 2007
I don't have any children starting any grade of schooling. I'm not eagerly anticipating a new arrival. I haven't bought a new house or new toy, I'm not embarking on or returning from any exciting excursions.
Just a few weeks of regular life. I don't mind it, but it makes for some very boring blog fodder. And I find it makes me a bit pessimistic. What do you mean I haven't been invited out in two weeks, am I not cool enough anymore??
Next week we start putting some things in place schedule wise. Our weekly drop in time at the Early Years Center begins on Monday, we have Ladies Time Out on Thursday, our small group should be starting up again either this week or next I think. I've got crop nights beginning next friday. It will be nice to have a full schedule, I really am looking forward to being with people, outside of my house for a purpose other than buying groceries!
We've also begun decorating the kid's rooms so there will be some fun pictures of that in the next week. Stars and Moons and Princesses. And I should probably start documenting this pregnancy a bit better. I did pretty good with the first two babes, but I don't want Baby #3 to be the one without a baby book or any memoirs.
Even after all that airing of the brain I am stilll quite blank.
Saturday, September 01, 2007
I want them to eat well and I want to do the best I can. It's true that Isabella is currently in a hot dog/chicken nugget & fries/mac & cheese stage that I am not going to wage WW3 to get her out of, but I do strive to provide nutrition and learn more each day about what nutritous eating is.
The thing that makes being in the kitchen so dreadful for me is the inevitable ensuing headache. I am serving three to four different dietary demographics each time I make a meal. Nick being a 6'5" athletic guy who will use that as an excuse to eat 24/7, Isabella who can eat what we eat- the operative word being can, Brooklyn who is just moving from everything mushed to all things chewable and myself eating for two while hopefully never seeing 200.
I have always loved dinner and we have always eaten good dinners. I am a recent convert to breakfast and since it's new terrain I am enjoying figuring it out. Lunch, however, still eludes me and healthy snacks are a carribean island I've never been too. One nice thing about kids is that they need to eat every 3-4 hours or else everything crashes, so I at least have the reminder to eat on a regular basis.
I am determined to fix the mistakes I made during my breastfeeding attempts that I can now see in hindsight in order to make it a successful venture this time around and so eating has begun to consume even more brainpower than normal for me. I do not eat nearly the amount of calories recommended for a breastfeeding woman, and I'm not obsessed with my weight or anything like that, I just don't think to eat.
I just did up my second round of "Once a Month Cooking". (If you're going to try this method and I highly recommend it, give it at least two cooking attempts to decide if you like it. The first time is overwhelming but the second one is a lot better!). We've been eating food from our freezer for supper for only one week and already I can feel a weight lifted off my shoulders. With supper virtually off my mind I can turn my focus to those elusive carribean islands.
I wonder if I'm just odd that I don't think about food all. day. long. Has anyone else been on a journey like mine? What has helped you master the pyramid?
Thursday, August 30, 2007
I was sitting back thinking about how nice it will be when we're busy, (I'm a bit weird that way, I love busyness!). When each person has their own color marker to use on the family calendar in order to keep track of their activities. I signed up the girls for the fall session of swimming lessons and got excited to have an activity. Then I decided to think of how/where I would be volunteering this fall, stuff like that.
That's when I realized that we are already at the point of needing a family calendar! Our weeks are full. The difference is that with smaller kids the majority of the activities happen before supper and not after. I know that having full weeks mean that the days will fly by and that has me excited too. I am not ready to have a baby tomorrow, (fingers crossed Elizabeth!), but I am so excited to add our third addition before we ring in the New Year.
I'm sure not a fan of the dog days of summer, I love the ironic fast pacedness of the holidays, but I'd rather take it without the heat! I hope everyone, (especially my three loyal readers), has a great fall, full of activity and blessings and challenges. Happy New Year!