Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy New Year

I'm feeling fairly short winded tonight. I have much on my plate and not a lot of time before I need to hit the sack. Here is a 2009 review. I'm just doing this quickly so please forgive me if I forgot something!

January: Nothing much happened. Work!

February: Abigail turned 1 year old. My parents came out for a visit.

March: March was fairly uneventful, except the last week ushered in a cold for Abigail that she would fight on and off for 6 weeks (or so).

April: We discovered that we were expecting another sweet girl in November. My due date was November 14.

May: We made a trip to Kansas and enjoyed a lovely stay with my aunt and uncle in Nebraska.

June: Another month of work and staying home.

July: We took a little trip to Michigan with Andrew's family.

August: My parents came out for a visit and we headed to Pittsburg at the end of the month for a family reunion.

September: At the beginning of the month, Andrew and I were able to get away for a little one night retreat. It was so nice not to have child duty for a night. I don't think I've slept that deeply since Abigail was born (or since that night).

October: I was getting large and ready for the baby to come. We took at trip (when I was 37 weeks pregnant) to Shaker Village in Kentucky. Andrew also had a business trip to New York this month.

November: On November 8, Elsie Joy was born after a brief and relatively easy birth. She was born in a birthing tub in Dayton. It was a wonderful experience. A few days after Elsie arrived home, Abigail became very ill with some virus and got her first antibiotic. My mom came to help out with the new baby. On the day she arrived in the area, I started to get very ill myself with a breast infection (not mastitis). It cleared up the day or two before she left!

December: December was filled with adjusting to a new baby, being at home with both girls, and getting ready for Christmas. The holidays were busier than I wanted them to be (what did I expect with two kids) but enjoyable, none-the-less.

I'm getting ready to write down some goals for 2010 and am going to set up monthly reminders on my calendar so this isn't just a one-time thing. Hopefully I will write about them and then at the end of the year, we'll see how I did! :)

I'll leave you with a picture of my sweet Elsie Joy giving me some of her first smiles.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Still Crazy!

Well, I still haven't taken the time to upload pictures or video from Christmas.

I took the time to sanitize my kitchen sink, counter, and fridge today. It was nice to get all that clean!

Abigail seems to have picked up another cold. I was just thinking how wonderful it has been that she's been healthy for six whole weeks now! A record! This cold doesn't seem to serious. Hopefully it won't develop into anything else. She's been playing and eating and drinking normally so hopefully she'll fight it off quickly (and NOT pass it to her sister!).

I feel like I'm on vacation this week since Andrew is off work. I made it to the Library by myself today. So nice! I'm hoping to make a JcPenney run later in the week (he has to work on Wednesday).

The most exciting thing around these parts is our new TV and Blue-Ray player. We bought ourselves a new flat-screen TV with some Christmas money and decided to get a Blue-Ray player since we can now play high-definition things. We were also thrilled to discover that our Blue-Ray player also can stream videos from Netflix, Blockbuster, and You Tube (it is hooked up to the internet connection in our house)!!!! Hello HOURS of entertainment for Abigail with the Happy Cow Commercials and Elmo videos on You Tube.

Actually, I'm only kidding. I really try to limit Abigail's TV watching to when it is only necessary (like when I'm in the shower) but it is nice to be able to watch those downstairs. I let her watch the ABC song with Elmo twice today. She was thrilled!

Also the TV streams Pandora Internet Radio. If you haven't heard of this, you're missing out. Andrew listens to it all the time anyway but it's nice to play it over our sterio system.

We're living it up! :)

That's all for now folks. Maybe tomorrow I won't be so lazy and actually get some pictures and video on here!

Saturday, December 26, 2009


It has been a whirlwind of a week. We have had so many things to do and places to go. I got a new camera with my Christmas money so hopefully we'll have more pictures and fun stuff like that!

I hope to resume to regularly scheduled blogging soon!

Quick updates:

Abigail continues to amaze me! She learns new things every day. Tonight she said "Sorry Bella" to her cousin. It was so cute! She can almost say her ABC's by herself. She can count to 10 but still leaves out 4 and 9 so I'm not sure that counts yet. In January I'm going to look into some "curriculum" (of sorts) to work on recognizing words and beginning to read. This will definitely be a no-pressure sort of thing but she is interested so I figure - why not! Perhaps we should really start to work on recognizing her colors first.

She is also interested in the toilet but has yet to do anything in it. I'm not pressuring her there either. I'm just making it fun and letting it be her choice whether to go or not. She's still young and I don't want it to be something she fears. She sits on the potty (her choice) once a day or so, so we are moving the right direction.

Elsie is growing like a weed. She is smiling, cooing, and getting so big. She has yet to turn into a real decent sleeper yet. Perhaps I'm spoiling her because I'm being so lax on her sleeping habits. She is still sleeping most of the night in a swing or bouncy seat. I try to have her start the night out in her bed. She goes 4 or 5 hours for the first feeding and 2 to 3 for the second at night which means I'm still getting up twice a night. She is a remarkably easy baby, despite not sleeping much at night. She really rarely fusses, unless she gets hungry or gets hiccups when she's tired! I couldn't have asked for an easier baby. I'm so spoiled!

Okay - more later. I will update on Christmas and other such happenings!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Our World

Here is a word picture of what is going on in our world at this very moment:

- Abigail is in bed talking herself to sleep. So sweet!

- Elsie is sitting beside me in her bouncy seat with hiccups. So sweet!

- Andrew just left to go see a movie he has already seen with some family. (Yes, he has to work in the morning).

- I'm blogging.

- Our van is in the repair shop . . . again.

- My fridge is bare. I need to go shopping . . . but when and with 2 kids?! Yikes!

Chivalry is Alive!

My dear, sweet, loving husband got home from work last night at 9:45 pm.

He called me on his way home and I told him that our van was acting weird during the day (same problem as before - ugh!) so at 9:50 pm, before even setting foot in the house, he was under the hood, trying to figure out the problem.

The main reason why this is so important is that in our house right now we have no milk, eggs, juice for Abigail, veggies for Abigail, or fruit for Abigail (the last two she eats at each meal - most of the time). I MUST go to the store today!

Monday, December 21, 2009

I'm still here!

I'm still here. I wish I could find time to write more but my computer time is limited with little ones around.

I'm doing bedtime by myself for the 2nd time because Andrew is working late. And for the second time Abigail is throwing a fit at being put to bed. How does she know her dad isn't here? I don't get it.

Anyway, I'm trying to be strong and not give in and just let her stay up. I'm exhausted from a rough night last night (every member of my family woke me up, actually - including the dog and my husband) and I really could use a peaceful night!

I have a post forming in my mind about the change in my job status and what it is like. Hopefully I'll get a chance to write more soon.

Perhaps I'll get the chance to take a bath here in a few minutes.

Good night!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

New Day

What a different day we have had! We have had a wonderful day! I have a happy, bouncing, agreeable, loving, obedient (mostly) toddler today.

She didn't listen a few times when it came to the computer but after some correction, I think she got the message.

We had fun reading, singing, dancing, cleaning, and just hanging out today.

What a difference a day makes!

I also must add how thankful I am for my sweet baby, Elsie. Seriously, the child is a dream! She cries when she's hungry and occasionally cries when she's overly tired and can't settle down but other than that ... nothing! She's laying on my bed at the moment, wide awake and cooing to herself.

I think the Lord knew that I couldn't handle a high needs child and while I may regret saying this, at this point she seems to be pretty laid back and mellow!

I am so blessed with my wonderful family . . . husband and two beautiful girls. I do feel blessed . . . even during the tantrums! :)

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

What a day!

I was going to go into detail but now I'm just too tired.

Abigail has been a challenge today, being super happy and talkative one minute and then throwing a tantrum the next.

From hitting me and her sister a little too hard, to not eating her supper, to throwing a tantrum in each of the two stores we went into today, I know we've hit the "terrible-two" attitude stage.

In going through all of this, I know that it is just her age - that it will pass - that she's adjusting to a baby too.

My prayer is that I will be able to calmly guide her to realize that her attitudes and actions are sinful (I know she won't grasp this just yet). My prayer is that I will not react to her attitudes and actions just because they are embarrasing or annoying to me as a parent. I'm not sure that makes sense but I want my reactions to her as a parent to be guided by my concern for her heart and sinful nature and not guided by my own selfishness (being embarrased or annoyed). Hopefully that makes sense.
How can this sweet face be so naughty sometimes?

I love this girl more than anyone could imagine!

Monday, December 14, 2009

I've lost my mind!

This may not seem like a big deal to some but here's what I did last week (yes, I'm sharing my stupidity with you).

I have been working on writing thank you notes for people who gave us gifts for Elsie/Abigail or brought us a meal.

They are all written (thus far).

I put addresses and stamps on 1/2 of them and mailed them. I was still working on addresses for the other 1/2.

I realized several days after I mailed them that I only put $.41 on them and current postage is $.44. I also realized I didn't put my return address on any of them!


I also think I threw away the list of thank you's I had to write.

I attempted to recreate my list last night (at 3 am because I couldn't sleep thinking about it) and I'll have to write them all again, put postage on all again, and attempt to mail.

My main concern, however, is forgetting someone!


P.S. If any of you mom's have tips on how I can get my daughter to stop fake crying, I'd love to hear it. She's been doing it all morning. Completely fake but does it every 5 minutes. There goes the fake crying again. Hmm.

P.P.S. Here is what I have done so far this morning: fed baby, fed Abigail, made mexican chicken dish for crock pot, made rice, made two pecan pies, ate breakfast, unloaded dishwasher, reloaded dishwasher, read to Abigail, baked pies, hand washed dishes, fed baby, got baby to sleep in her crib (first time!), called guy about Sterling house roof, and blogged. I am getting ready to shower and hopefully go shopping this afternoon because it is such a warm day. I have to take advantage of it!

Friday, December 11, 2009

A New Day

After I got the girls to bed, things calmed down at our place last night. I only got up with Elsie twice (I've been doing that for about a week now) and Abigail was quiet as a mouse all night and slept until 8 am!

We've had a wonderful day already. I managed to get a shower during Elsie's morning nap (which is still doing on) and I actually exercised for a while! Abigail was fascinated by my workout video so I'm sure she'll start joining me soon. I held a baby during the last 10 minutes of the walking workout so it was extra good for me! :) Elsie was easily lulled to sleep by my movement.

Just wanted to say that we're fine but looking forward to Andrew's return tonight.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

And the day was going so well

I had a wonderful day . . . up to a point.

Abigail got home from her Nana's and we had a nice supper together, read some, and got her ready for bed. Andrew's cousin came over to babysit so I could go to our small group Christmas party tonight.

As soon as I said good-bye to Abigail, she had a complete melt-down. I have NEVER seen her cry and scream like that before. NEVER. Complete hysterics. I finally (after 15 minutes of calming her down) decided to try to leave anyway.

I got all loaded in the van and gave it 5 or 10 minutes to see if she'd calm down. I listened at the door and could still hear her screaming (she never does this) so I went back in.

The ONLY thing she wanted was to go with me in the "new car". So, I bravely decided to try to take both girls. She would not go to bed for me and she did not want to stay with Andrew's cousin and play.

After taking Andrew's cousin home, Elsie started screaming in the car and Abigail kept saying "home" so I gave up and just came home.

Abigail was fine once we got back and went to bed easily. I can only think that this was some sort of reaction to 1) not being around me all day, and 2) having Elsie get to go with me to the party and she didn't get to go. Anyway, it made my nerves SHOT!

Ugh, so much for feeling like I had this two-kid thing down. Not only am I disappointed to miss our young marrieds small group Christmas party but I feel like an utter failure as a mom. Yuck!


Wednesday, December 09, 2009

All Alone Again

Andrew is in New York . . . again. He was there two months ago as well. I never expected any travel when he took this job but things in the office changed and well . . . it's necessary now.

Instead of dwelling on all the things that could go wrong when he's away (and with two kids - yikes!), I'm planning some fun things to do for me and the girls (well Abigail anyway).

I want to say a big "thank you" to my in-laws who are keeping Abigail overnight tonight and some tomorrow. I can't wait to sleep in again tomorrow! Andrew left from here at noon today so I got to sleep in as well (as long as Elsie does) - which this morning was 9 am! Do you know how long it has been since I slept in until 9 am?! I was definitely before Abigail was born.

I also love getting the house all sparkly clean when he's gone. It's in pretty decent shape right now, actually. Despite having two girls to care for during the day, it's amazing just what being in the house does for me getting it clean. I have never really been home all day before (because of work) and by doing just little things, we can keep it pretty clean around here. The bathrooms need some work, and my desk area, but the rest of the house is clean. By clean I mean that Abigail and I actually dusted the living room the other day (and vacuumed!).

Okay, all for now!

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Elsie Pie

My sweet little Elsie is 1 month old today. Hard to believe!

She is starting to come into her own. She is beginning to fight sleep a little bit (a trait she shares with her sister) and is starting to not fit in some of her newborn things.

Time . . . slow down! :)

Elsie and her wonderful daddy!

Monday, December 07, 2009

Sleep Update

Last night Elsie ALMOST slept for 5 hours! She was at about 4 hrs and 45 minutes when she got hungry! She was in her swing. She fell asleep about 9:30 pm and unfortunately, I wasn't able to fall asleep until about 10:30 pm (something about my husband coming in and turning on the light at 10 pm and then tossing and turning for a while) so I have yet to sleep that amount but I now have hope it will happen soon!

She still has yet to sleep in her crib. I need to really try to work on that so she can get used to sleeping laying down. I'm really going to be very adamat about her napping in her own bed starting in the next few months. We had such a time with Abigail's naps until I really started insisting that she be in a bed for naps. I want to avoid that with Elsie if possible.

Speaking of, she's struggling with going down for a nap right now, so I'm going to try her crib for a while.

Enjoy the Christmas photo we took yesterday. We took a LOT of them, so I'll post more later!

Friday, December 04, 2009

Dearest Elsie Pie

Dear Sweet Elsie,

When your sister was born, she used to get letters from me all the time. However, mama is busy with two girls (and still recovering from all this) so this will be my first letter to you. Sorry for the delay!

I am so thankful that we named you what we did because it is so fitting! Elsie means "my God is bountiful" and indeed He is! He has brought overwhelming Joy (your middle name) to our life these past three weeks.

He is bountiful in so many ways and I want you to know that. I can see His mighty hand in our lives since you've been born. First of all, your birth was amazing (I'll post a birth story later). When you came home from the hospital, God protected you and provided healing for your sister so that you did not catch her bug.

God is bountiful in that He provided a way for us to be well cared for when I wasn't feeling well with my infection by allowing Grandma RoRo to be here. He provided a way for me to continue breastfeeding you and protected you from coming in contact with anything that would make you sick.

You light up our lives and bring us such joy. We can hear the joy that you bring to your sister when she says, "Elsie Pie". Our greatest desire for you is to know the joy of salvation that is only available through knowing Christ. That is our mission to you as parents, to guide you to know that sweet saving grace.

Last spring we were surprised to learn that you would be joining our family and I must say that was one of the greatest surprises of my lifetime (if not the greatest because we were planning for your sister).

I don't think words can properly express what a wonder you are to me and how much love you have brought into our little family.

I'll love you for always,

Your Mama!

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Home, home!

This feels like my first week to actually be home with the girls. With family in town, Andrew home, and lots of help before (and not able to do much), I didn't really feel like I was at home with them until now.

It's going great! We've had an occasional moment with Abigail and a whiny attitude but they are pretty much centered around food and/or nap time. Over all, we've been having a great time. I have even managed to get a shower or bath taken each morning! As long as I get Elsie to sleep and closed in her room (safe and sound where big sister can't play too roughly) then I am able to get ready.

Abigail is fascinated by me taking a bath. I usually have a little observer running in and out of the bathroom telling me that she's watching the Happy Cows (which she isn't really, she's in the bathroom), that I'm reading a book, that I'm taking a bath, that I need more water, etc. It's quite funny.

If I am able to get ready in the mornings, then I can use nap time (Abigail's nap time that is) for other things, like napping myself . . . or blogging, which is what I am doing now.

Eventually, when Elsie starts to sleep better/more/etc, I will probably try to get up and ready before Abigail wakes up. That might not be for a while yet, however.

Now, if I'm able to pull off getting all our Christmas shopping done before Christmas, we'll be good to go!

Here are some photos!