Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Our Merry Christmas

This picture is from "our" family Christmas Saturday morning, which we did in anticipation of leaving town Monday.

As I sit here and type this I want to think we are not having a very, Merry Christmas. Our Christmas plans have changed quite a bit in the past few days due to lots of sickness in our family. From my nephew battling RSV/pneumonia, to ear infections, sinus infections, and stomach virus'. So as we have changed the plans several times of when we were actually leaving town, I accepted that it was ok and this is just what we have to do. Though still wondering why the past 2 Christmas' we battled sickness all the same.....remember last year?!
Then yesterday I started running a fever of 102, and went to the doctor to discover I have strep throat! I don't think I've ever had strep throat! So now, since today my family was to some degree actually getting to celebrate together, we are still unable to leave town since I'm still contagious until I'm fever free for 24 hours. Sigh.
As I was able to sleep most of the morning today, and still no fever, just a really sore throat, I just read that a friend of mine was having some sickness in her family as well. She entitled them her "man plans." And had this verse with it....

The mind of man plans his way, but the LORD directs His steps.
Proverbs 16:9

So I thank her for also giving me perspective, about my "man plans" as well. I too needed to remember that it's ok, as she said, that the toys and chaos multiply all around me. And that our God is still the God He says He is amongst all the travel changes, family visits, sicknesses, and that we still are so blessed, thankful and need to see the privilege it is to be able to celebrate the birth of our precious Lord and Savior, Jesus!

"For to us a child is born,
to us a son is given,
and the government will be on his shoulders,
And He will be called
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting God,
Prince of Peace!"
Isaiah 9:6

Friday, December 18, 2009

Little Casey

We call her "little Casey." For those of you who know my husband well.....she not only looks exactly like him, but I do believe she is appearing to take on his very outgoing and extraverted personality as well! So by these pictures, need I say more?!
Posted by Picasa

Thursday, December 17, 2009

5 months ago today....

.......(well yesterday to be exact...December 16th) our little Mary Etta came to join our family! I want to say "stop!" to time right now! Don't get me wrong I do LOVE all their sweet little stages! And it is hard to say one is better than another....but getting past the newbornyness (not really a word i know) changes things so much in your household! And you definitely notice it more and more with each additional child (b/c i think the first time around you are "let's face it" just trying to get the hang of this whole parenting thing, and just figure out what the heck is going on!!) But once you hit that 3-4 month marker...oh it's just so sweet!! They settle easier, sleep better (well, maybe we have just been blessed with good sleepers b/c this has been my experience, though I know not everyone's), engage more, coo/laugh/talk--oh it's just the best!! She is just so fun and sweet and I just want to eat her up!!
Let's see what is new here at the beginning of 5 months....
  • Doing SO much better with nursing! I probably haven't really talked about this one much, but we did have a rough time there for awhile. Not sure what the deal is, both girls have been just kinda finicky...Reed just ate and that was that...but the girls have had more to "figure out" with eating for some, who knows, reason. But in the past month or so it's changed so much for the better! So we are thankful for that--and I'm usually fitting in 5-6 feedings a day; since we probably will stay hold off on the solids til after holiday travels for sure!
  • Gaining weight so good! Yeah! This was such a concern with EC...since she still is little and will probably just be our petite/little girl (at 18 months only in the 8%, weighing 2o lbs., 15 oz.--just a 1 lb. gain in 3 months!) And Mary Etta weighed 13 lbs., 2 oz. for her 4 month (keeping her in the 45-50%--yeah!)! I bet these girls will be wearing the same clothes in a year or so if we keep it up at this rate!
  • Not really rolling much of yet; but I'm in no rush with movement as we have 2 other little people doing plenty of movement around here! A couple times I've found her on her back from the belly....but that has maybe happened 3-4 times total! Oh well; she can do it, but just doesn't often. And I don't know if I'll ever get the girl out of the swaddle blanket! She is really about too long for it! I know I've posted before about being a belly sleeper...but the girl HATES her belly! I still occasionally try and she won't have anything of it! It just makes her mad and she won't however she sleeps is fine as long as she does sleep!
  • Cooing, laughing, talking, squealing...she does it all!! So fun! She just is happy all the time, unless she is tired! And she still smiles with her whole body! LOVE IT!

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Our FIRST trip to the dentist!

Our first trip to the dentist....can you see how proud? Reed was such a big boy, and truly surprised us as we took him for his first cleaning last week! He didn't cry or really even protest, which is HUGE for him, as he is usually very timid in new settings and environments. We had been reading the Berenstain Bears book about the dentist for quite awhile before after checking it out at the library prior to our dentist visit. So he seemed to be very "prepared" or excited I should say about going. And loved getting the stickers and tokens to pick a couple prizes out of their prize machine. Such a brave boy!
Little sis had her first experience at the dentist as well. A little over a month ago she fell and chipped her upper middle teeth, which already resulted in one accidental busting of the lip. So I knew I should have them looked at, and they did sand them down a little so they wouldn't be so sharp. She didn't like it at all, and definitely needed more coaxing and reassuring that all was ok. Poor little thing, she seems to be traumatized by doctors and exams for even the littlest of things. But all in all she was still a brave girl!

Friday, December 11, 2009

5 years ago today......

we said "I DO!" I can't believe it's been 5 years already?! I continue to think about all the things the Lord has done and taught us over these past 5 years. So many joys, sorrows, trials, but He has continued to be our Rock and our Constant Faithful God who never changes, even though we waiver oh so often! We truly are so blessed and have so much to be thankful for in how He continues to be at work in our hearts, our marriage, and our family--sanctifying us to be more like Him! And I truly am in awe at how my heart grows more and more each year to love Casey, and know I am truly blessed that this godly man who seeks to know the Lord and make Him known is my husband! Casey I love you so much, and truly am so thankful for you in my life! I pray we would continue to seek the Lord together, and that our family would be reflection of all the Jesus has done for us....a picture of the Gospel. And I pray we continue to have many more years (45 as you said :) ahead to grow together and celebrate what God has brought together, leaving a godly heritage for the generations that follow. What an honor and a privilege to have that opportunity and to do it with you! I love you!

These pictures I love.....they were taken by some sweet friends of ours when I was newly pregnant with Reed. We never had "formal" engagement pictures made so I wanted some of just Casey and I pre-children. I love all of them, but I tried picking some of my favorites for today!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Our Treasure

For those of you that know me well you know I'm such a terrible reader. It's not that I don't like to read, but I just don't make it as much of a priority as I'd like to. I start many a books and get halfway through them, and either never finish them or try picking them up ever so often (but by then I forgot what I last read so it kinda seems pointless to do that). Well, in the past couple weeks I've been reading this book about family traditions by Noel Piper (the wife of the well-known preacher/writer John Piper), and yes I have finished it! It's been so good and I have loved every minute of it! It's given me so many things to think about as far as establishing and creating traditions for our family, not just for the Christmas season but everyday of the year as well! I like to think I'm as orderly and organized with how our home is run as Noel talks about, but I realize I have many areas to improve in as well. But this book has definitely been an encouragement to me as I continue to grow and press on for the sake of the Gospel!

Another joy we've been enjoying this Christmas season is our Christmas music! I just ordered this CD and LOVE, LOVE, LOVE it!! The kids are enjoying the music as well, which is so fun to see as well! I have loved being able to talk with Reed daily about Christmas and what we anticipate as we prepare to celebrate the birth of baby Jesus. At 3 years old, I can see him beginning to piece some of these great truths together, though I know it's also a little perplexing to him at times as well.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Sweet giggles!

Last post of the day :)
I found this video I took a few weeks ago, and thought it was too cute! I'm trying to tickle Mary Etta and get to giggle. Emery-Claire is standing there also trying to join in and "tickle", as you can see her little hand on the baby. I think she finally giggled in the video once towards the end, but it's actually cuter hearing EC laugh and then start trying to show off her body parts!

The Farm

I think awhile back I mentioned how Casey had taken Reed to the "farm" to be outdoors and ride on the 4-wheeler. This is their "man time" as they like to call it! Reed LOVES this! They have ridden the 4-wheeler, walked in the woods, and thrown rocks in the pond. I just thought these pictures were too cute and I had to post them! Last time they went to the farm it was too funny as the first thing Reed wanted to tell me about their day when he ran into the house....."I pooped in the woods!" he exclaimed very excitedly! All boy!

Posted by Picasa

The stockings were hung.....

This past weekend we had lots of fun! Since Gigi (my mom) was here for a visit we were able to put up our tree (yes, unfortunately it's just an artificial one.....I really do want to start the tradition of a "real" one, but with all our traveling around the holidays I just haven't felt it worth the effort yet to make the switch--but hopefully we will at some time). We also made some fun Christmas crafts, decorated the house, and just had so much fun enjoying this sweet time of the year as we prepare to celebrate the birth of our Lord and Savior! It's been so different (and so exciting) this year to really prepare Reed for this season and constantly talk about celebrating Jesus' birth and our need for Him to come. It's amazing how their little minds are such "sponges" and soak in all that you teach them! I so love hearing our sweet children hiding God's word in their heart and talking and explaining to them who Jesus is!

Other fun happenings this past weekend......

sitting up like a big girl in the bumbo

hanging ornaments on the tree

playing beauty salon--so fun to be a girl!

Christmas crafts that Gigi brought--loads of fun as well!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Gobble, gobble!

Hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving! We had Gigi (my mom) come for a visit, and Pops (my stepdad) stopped by briefly before heading to visit with his elderly parents. We all had a blast being together, and it was kinda nice and low-key as well. These are the only actually "turkey day" photos...obviously I didn't take very many. But have several other ones from the weekend to put up later, since we played outside in the leaves lots and put up all the Christmas decorations. Casey and I actually made our "first" Thanksgiving meal together (mom didn't arrive til about lunch) so we are proud to say we took on the cooking! We did create several easy shortcuts but some other "sides" we put more effort into...but all in all it turned out pretty good! We made a turkey breast in the crockpot--so easy and tasted really good (but I think we almost left it in there just a little longer than we needed to, since it had a slightly dry taste). But if that is worst thing that could happen, well, I feel that is pretty good!
Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Little girls

Love hanging out in laundry baskets......

Love having their "dink" (drink) accessible at ALL times--even figured out it sits perfectly in her shopping cart while she shops!

Love to pose for pictures and say "cheese" every time!
Cry often!

I think I'm beginning to see the differences more lately in boys and girls...well, to some degree. I know some of it is a true toddler trend as well. The biggest is how VERBAL she is! Tonight at dinner we heard "I want more"....Reed never would have said this at 17 months old--he was barely putting together 2 words, much less 3 words together! And not to mention things such as "hairbow", "teapot", "baby", etc. etc. Though don't think there isn't lots of cars and trains play time as well; but what else can one expect with an older brother she adores and wants to do exactly what he is doing!

Monday, November 16, 2009

4 Months already?!

Sweet big brother talking to little Mary Etta

How has it been 4 months ago that this sweet little gal joined our family?! I just want to stop and freeze her right where she is, and yet before I know it we will be celebrating her birthday! She is truly a joy and has the sweetest little smile that lights up her entire face whenever you talk to her, it's just so precious! She is beginning to watch her big sister and big brother more lately. I often see these big, round eyes (which I believe are still a shade of blue--a darker blue than the other 2, but at this point still blue) watching closely as her siblings play around her. We seem to be doing better with nursing, she was getting finicky there for awhile (both of our girls seemed to have been this way, not sure why but they have been)..but she seems to be more on track the past couple of weeks---maybe moving from the 3 to 4 month mark (clearly out of the newborn phase now) has helped her. And taking longer naps and eating more 3-4 hours stretches during the day, and definitely 8-9 hours at night (I still have been waking her up at 10/11ish to feed her before I go to bed; though she'd probably be fine if I didn't, but she is just so sweet and sleepy and it seems to be one of her best feedings of the day, and then she quickly drifts back to sleep). She still sleeps in the pack-n-play, in our bathroom. I know! Poor girl.....well, have to tell her stories about her first few months of life sleeping in her parents bathroom, how lovely!?! Hopefully soon she'll be in her own room, as I think I'm gearing up to move the big 2 in the same room, so praying that transition can work out smoothly. Though I still will have to get "creative" with nap time--which probably means EC will sleep in our bathroom in the pack-n-play (so hope that goes well!!) Lots and lots of cooing and "talking" these days, so, so, so sweet at this age for sure! And I do believe we've heard a few laughs this past month as well, not routinely, but occasionally some for sure--also, very, very sweet! I know we are so blessed with this precious baby girl, and so thankful for her life and the privilege it is to be entrusted with her life!

Friday, November 13, 2009

Soft baby shoes

My sweet friend, Liz, made these shoes for our little Mary Etta! Thanks so much Liz, they are just too cute! Liz has made quite a few pairs of these little shoes and has been selling them the past couple of months. She takes individual orders and has been selling them in a local gift shop as well. If you're interested in having a pair please let me know and I will gladly put you in contact with her!
Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

What we've been up to...

Loving each other......

SEWING! Yes, in all my FREE time with 3 little people, I've been sewing! The above pattern is one mom got me for Christmas last year (along with the cute fabric) and I finally made it for Emery-Claire....I can't believe I did the piping! Wasn't as hard as I thought it would be, and makes it so cute! I'm thinking I may get it monogrammed too---but just with a "W" of course, so Mary Etta can wear it later as well.

Fun fall pattern ruffle pants and applique shirt! Thanks so much to my dear friend, Emily--who is a fabulous seamstress by the way!, who sent me the coordinating checked fabric to make the ruffle, pockets on the back, and applique...we love this outfit!

These are the applique shirts for the girls to match with more ruffle pants....I'm waiting on more fabric in this pattern to arrive in the mail so I can make them pants to go with their shirts.

One of my friends had one of these "binky bib" (such a great idea for the spitter and attaching the paci to the baby all in one!) So I randomly came home and just thought I'd wing it and try to make my own....considering I had no pattern it turned out pretty well and serves the purpose for our big spitter girl, and keeping her paci close!

Naked girls in diapers!

Making turkey shirts. We made these last year and Reed loved it! A great idea from my friend Rebekah (she was a preschool teacher and always has such cute ideas she does with her 2 girls!) So I thought we'd do it again...was a little messy with the 2 of them (trying to make sure the paint wasn't all over everything, as both were very eager to make their shirt) but I suppose a success since Reed is usually asking to wear this shirt or his Thomas train shirt.
Tummy time!

Hanging out in baby's swing!