Thursday, July 30, 2009

Baby Gear . . . and other such thoughts.

I am so thankful that we are having a girl! I am especially grateful because we have only 3 1/2 months left (yikes) and not a single thing has been done in preparation.

As I wrote yesterday, I don't think that Abigail is ready yet to be moved out of her crib. Time will tell, I guess. So, having said that, her room will probably stay exactly the same right up until her little sister takes it over! Yeah for not having to change a thing!

I am also grateful that we really don't need to buy anything. At least yet. The seasons will be slightly off so we may need to buy a few warmer clothes in 6 month size depending on if this new baby grows like Abigail did (she always wore the size/age she was at the time). I'm beginning to feel the itch to pull the old things out of storage and start sorting, organizing, and washing things.

However, there is one (or two) baby gear items that I would like to have. Now, I just have to save up the money and decide which one I want!

First item . . . double stroller:

We already have a stroller and I cannot count the amount of time that Abigail used this. I have a feeling that I will want to get out of the house with both kids, and with both being so young, this seems like a very convenient item to have.
I love that the car seat can snap into the front or the back seat. With this the library, mall, park, etc seems do-able. But, I have always thought I would enjoy a jogging stroller. While, I will admit, I don't jog, I do like to walk and hope to do much more of that in the next year.

The major drawback is that these are expensive!! Yikes!

Ok, if you've read this far, I am amazed. I'm sure it is not in the least bit interesting but hey, it's what's on my mind!

The last but certainly not least item that I would like to get is a deluxe bouncy seat. This seat literally saved my sanity and probably my life after Abigail was born. When she wouldn't sleep anywhere else, she'd sleep in her bouncy seat.

We already have one but I'd like to have another one that we could use for sleeping for the first few weeks/month so this child doesn't end up sleeping with me in a very uncomfortable easy chair like Abigail did. It is also a big hassle to move the bouncy seat up and down the stairs.

The one we have is great for letting Mama take a shower, cook dinner, etc, but I'd really like a model like this:

Looks sleep-able, right? I am a big fan of letting babies sleep by themselves, and a bouncy seat, in my opinion, allows your baby to be more comfortable in that transition from sleeping inside of mom to sleeping alone in a crib (all. night. long.). First I am going to try several local used places to see if I can get a great deal on these.

Wish me luck!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Mine Mine! And other charming new words . . .

Abigail's newest favorite phrase is: mine, mine, mine, mine, mine, mine, mine! Said in a very loud and whiny voice. I don't know how many toys we took away from her in the nursery on Sunday because she kept taking them from other kids and proclaiming them "mine"! I know it is a "stage" but it isn't a stage that I want to continue for very long!

Abigail is talking like crazy these days. Most of it is gibberish but when she wants to tell you something, she certainly can. On the way to the sitter's house this morning, my brilliant daughter looked out the window, pointed, and said "moo, cow". Sure enough, there were cows along the side of the road. She amazes me!

She is also starting to put two words together. When we were pulling away from the house this morning, she spent 5 or 10 minutes saying "Bye-Bye, Dada" and "Bye-Bye, Dewey." It was quite cute. I am going to try to get a video of her tonight "reading" to someone because it is pure gibberish and so very cute.

She is also a tender-hearted little sweetheart. We were in Lowe's yesterday, buying paint for Andrew's new office, when she heard another little kid crying (throwing a tantrum was more like it, but it sounded like crying to Abigail). Her little face got all scrunched up and her bottom lip flopped out and she kept saying "baby", "baby", over and over again.

That's all for now. Sorry, no new photos or video. I know, we're bad.

We've been in the midst of finishing Andrew's new office in our basement. It will open up the current office to use as a bedroom for Abigail when she's ready to move out of her crib.

The complete honest truth is: I'm scared to death of this. I'm not ready for my daughter to be the only person on the main level of the house, while the rest of us are upstairs. She is such a TERRIFIC sleeper in her crib that I don't want to disrupt this by putting her in a toddler bed or on a mattress. I'm trying to make Andrew promise that he'll wait to move her until I agree but so far he won't budge. :(

Monday, July 27, 2009

Time flies . . .

What a busy and wonderful weekend we had. Mine started on Friday (of course) with a lovely family breakfast made by Aunt Linda. After that Abigail and I drove down to pick up a diaper trial that she is participating in. It is a lot of work but will get us free diapers for 2 weeks and a $50 gift card to our grocery store, so I can't complain.

After that, I headed off to have tea with my lovely friend, Lisa. Of course, the The Parlor was excellent and wonderful as always and we had a very nice time visiting together. If you live in the Cincinnati area, you should definitely visit. Here is our picture:



Later that afternoon, I had a cream tea with Andrew's family to celebrate his grandma's birthday. That was enjoyable as well. I have always loved the cream scones but I found the lavender lemon and chocolate chip ones particularly enjoyable as well! :) Hungry yet?

On Saturday, we decided to have a family game night at our house and I decided to make Super Nachos, which we hadn't had in some time. So yummy! We enjoyed playing games together.

Andrew and I worked in the nursery at church on Sunday. Besides Abigail saying "mine, mine, mine, mine" and taking toys from other little babies, she did great, even though both her parents were holding babies at one point. I hope this trend of not being concerned when we hold babies continues! We are working hard to helping her understand the concept of sharing! I can't believe she is starting so young.

Abigail and I went home for a nap while Andrew took his parents and aunt to the Creation Museum. They had a good time and Abigail had a 2+ hour nap, which was nice. I napped a little and read while she was asleep. I enjoyed my day of rest!

In other news: I officially told my boss last week that I will not be returning after this baby is born. I am definitely having a very wide range of emotions with this decision. I, obviously, feel very called to be a full-time mommy to my kids, even though I know it won't be easy. I am also leaving a job environment that I love and co-workers that I love as well. However, I don't imagine that I will regret this decision any! Anyway, that's all I will say for now but will probably write more later.

Happy Monday!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Baby #2 Update

I have been horrible at keeping things up-to-date with Baby #2. I know that I will want to look back at this and remember what it was like so I'm trying to write a few things down.

  • Time is FLYING by. I can't believe that the end of summer is in sight. The midwife commented at my appointment on Tuesday how fast things go with #2. She's right!
  • I have my glucose text next week (already). Bring on the protein.
  • My next appointment will contain my hemoglobulin shot (I think that's what it is called) because Andrew's blood type is not compatible with mine. I guess it keeps my blood from attacking the baby's blood, if she got his blood type.
  • Despite having an easier first trimester, the other pregnancy issues seem to be much more pronounced this time. Constant painful backaches, heartburn, hip issues, carpal tunnel problems, and some preliminary cramping are already starting to plague me! (by the way, my midwives say the cramping is nothing to worry about).
  • I'm starting to get very nervous about the birth. With Abigail we were good natural birthing parents and spent lots of time doing the exercises and practicing relaxation to aid in the birth. I've decided I have to start doing it for at least 10 minutes a day, even if Andrew doesn't have the time to help me!
Sorry if this isn't clear. I woke up with a sinus headache today (allergies and pregnancy don't mix well) and it's still lingering. Makes me want to close my eyes!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Michigan Part 2

On Friday, Andrew and others decided to climb some dunes. Here is a photo for you to enjoy! Yes, he was able to do it with his back issues and also had a backpack on. I guess that could be called progress but also makes for a nervous wife! I DO NOT want him to injure his back like that again. Horrible!


Here is a photo of the sunset looking across Lake Michigan. It was beautiful. Unfortunately, we (at least Andrew and I) were unable to make it out there on a day that was completely clear. This was still beautiful anyway!


If anyone who went on the trip wants to tell me what this lighthouse was called, that would be great. I was too busy chasing an (over) active toddler that I didn't read up on it. Anyway, it was beautiful and we visited it twice!


And last but certainly not least, we stopped by Grand Rapids on our way home (overnight) and had a very lovely visit with my Grandma Helen. She is always such a wonderful and gracious hostess. I had not been to her new place so it was fun to stop there.

Abigail also loved the visit. She was particularly fond of my Grandma's chicken and rice soup with carrots, running down the long hallways in her building, taking a walk around the grounds, and swimming in the pool facility.

Andrew and I spent time playing word games with Grandma, visiting, and watching a movie, all while Abigail was asleep.

It was particularly nice to go to church on Sunday morning because my Grandma was joining the church as a new member. It was very special to see her be able to do that. She went to this same church as a young girl so it was neat to see her "come home".

Here is a picture taken of the girls before we left for home.

We got home at 6:00 pm on Sunday, and didn't even stop at home before heading to Andrew's Grandma's birthday party. I think I still feel tired from all the travel! It was very worth it though. . . . such a fun trip!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Food for Thought

Wow, this is thought provoking! Amazing. I think he explains it so clearly. Everyone should watch this. Pass it on!!



The Michael Jackson part is a tad bit cheesy but this is great anyway.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Michigan Part 1

What a wonderful time we had in Michigan. We couldn't have asked for better weather or a nicer place to be. We had a lovely room with closet space to put Abigail's bed in. It worked like magic for good room sharing for us! The family meals were delicious (of course) and we played many games of Upwords as well as seeing the local sights.


Andrew getting ready to climb the dunes. We were close to Sleeping Bear Dunes. Our house was on Long Lake.



Abigail hated the sand but enjoyed boating and playing in the water.



Trying to get Abigail to walk on the sand.



Isn't she cute?!



Group photo. I'm taking the picture and Abigail is napping (so we're missing). This was on Friday.



Lake Michigan. It is amazing how much it looks like the ocean!

The only problem with the trip was that it was too short. I could have used a few more days to relax and explore up there. I'm sure we'll be returning some day!

Happy Mama!

This will be short and sweet. I just want to praise and thank my wonderful husband for a moment, who has really stepped up his "helping" game lately! While on vacation, he was wonderful! He fed Abigail breakfast each morning and let me "sleep in" (although I don't think I ever slept any more - oh well), gave her baths, put her to bed and down for naps when he saw it was needed, and did all the feeding while we were at my Grandma's! :)

When we got home last night and he took charge and fed her dinner. Then we started unpacking the van. I took Abigail up to bed and he UNLOADED the WHOLE car by himself!

I'm not hard person to please. It it just the littlest things that help me out and give me some sanity!

Thanks, Love!

We're Home!

We made it back from Michigan and had a fabulous time. This isn't going to be long because I am headed out for a long day of work and am already tired! :) It is always so nice to get away and to get to spend some quality time together. I'll leave you with a photo or two of our trip but I'll post a more detailed report later. . . perhaps tonight . . . if it works out.

Lake Michigan


Our house. Abigail is napping and I'm taking this photo.
More later!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Final Day!

It's my final day at work before our short vacation. I'm already dreading coming back next Monday (not that I don't like my job, I do. I just don't like being away from my girl). She screamed and cried when I left her this morning. She's been shuttled around so much this past week and is out of her routine. Poor girl.

In other news, my frustration level is about to hit the roof. I wish people would listen. Seriously, let me finish a sentence. Really. Grr!! Ok, I'm done ranting now. If you want more information, ask me privately! Ha ha!

I still have much packing to do. It's mainly food. I have things to not only bring for the journey but for when we get up there as well. I've been being extra cautious with Abigail's food intake because of some allergic reactions she has been having lately. So, I'm bringing most of her food. Hopefully this will help! Abigail is packed and I'm almost packed.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Wild Weekend

Sorry, no pictures so I will try to make this short and sweet. I tried to download some videos from our "new" camera but the card reader wouldn't work. Hmm.

Anyway . . .

  • Friday: Abigail and I had a lovely playdate with some friends from our birth class. I guess you could say they are friends since fetuses! We realized we live so close together so we had a play date and it was fun!
  • Friday Afternoon: We had AC repair guys at our house from 11 am until 4 pm so we didn't go anywhere. Andrew's aunt came over (who is visiting) came over and played for a while.
  • Friday Evening: Andrew's cousin and sister babysat (thanks guys) so we could go to a young marries gathering. It was a blast. We watched a movie outside after the rain cleared up, although none of the ladies lasted through the movie. We were all sitting inside and talking!
  • Saturday: I went to a Pampered Chef party at lunch. It was so much fun. Yummy food (of course, it was at Lisa's house) and good friends.
  • Then I went to return our non-working video camera. I didn't have the receipt so I wasn't sure what to expect. They only had one left in the store and it was a returned item that checked out fine, so I said that I would take it. We got a $34 refund and a camera that works. Yeh!
  • I made supper for all of us and Andrew's dad on Saturday night (my MIL is out-of-town) and we had a good time.
  • Quiet evening . . . thankfully!
  • Sunday: We did the usual church thing. The only thing new was that Abigail moved up to the next Sunday school class. :( So sad. My baby is growing up. They get a snack in there so I had to go in and read the labels to make sure she wasn't getting anything with peanuts or made on machinery with peanuts. We figured out she could have Goldfish Crackers (not something I would EVER give my child at home but I figured an occasional snack would be ok). She cried like usual but was fine overall.
  • Sunday lunch: We ate out at Olive Garden (yum) with Andrew's dad. Abigail was good until the very end when she was bored of sitting and ready to get down. Oh, the biggest news was that she ate an Olive Garden breadstick and almost instantly got some hives around her mouth area. I felt so bad for her. I took the rest away (secretly!) and the hives went away in about 20 minutes. One on her lip was pretty bad though. Looked like a blister. I guess it could have been in contact with peanuts. I certainly hope she's not extremely allergic to more things!
  • The rest of the day was pretty relaxed. I mowed and picked some things from my garden (4 cucumbers, 8 hot peppers, and a carrot that wasn't ready to be picked yet!). If you live in the area and need some peppers, please let me know. I have WAY too many!
We are leaving for a little vacation on Wednesday and will be returning Sunday. We are making the 8 hour drive to Michigan (where the rest of Andrew's family is). It seems like such a long drive for such a short time but I know we'll have fun. Andrew's dad is riding up with us so we'll have more help with Abigail. Yeah! Wayne doesn't know how lucky he is to ride in the car with all the good snacks. I have all sorts of things planned! :)

Friday, July 10, 2009

My Sweet Grandma: Knee Update!


This is a picture from our recent trip to Kansas of my sweet Grandma. She recently (on Monday) had a knee transplant and it really doing quite well (for being 80). I think the plan is to move her to a more local hospital on Saturday for more therapy and the attempt a move home.

She is an amazing worker, gardener, Grandmother, Christian woman, and cook! My life has been blessed beyond measure to know and to be grand-mothered by this sweet and giving person.

Would you please pray for a very quick recovery for her?



Here she is feeding Abigail in May on our trip!

I wish I could be out there to do what I can to help out, but I'm not. So, I'll do what I can, and for right now, that is pray!

Thursday, July 09, 2009

Works for Me

I suppose I ought to participate in Works For Me Wednesday or another fun blog Theme day like that but to be honest, I don't have a lot of tips and I don't have a lot that works for me, until now. I think I have finally found a cleaning schedule that is do-able with my current life that keeps my home in a mild state of cleanliness. Here it is:


Daily Chores: Unload Dishwasher, Reload Dishwasher, Wipe Counters, Feed the Dog, Pick Up Toys, Water Plants, Run 1 load Laundry, Fold 1 load Laundry.

Each person has their own designated chores. Ok, so they are all mine (right now) except the Dog Feeding (Andrew) and toy pick up (Abigail - who does a remarkably good job). Andrew did do the dishwasher loading and unloading and it was a huge help! Thanks, honey!!

When Abigail gets a bit older I will start by adding folding clothes and towels to her chore list as well as helping to unload the dishwasher when she can be trusted not to drop and break things! She is currently a very joyful helper when we ask so I really smother on the praise and will hope that this continues! She also is our thrower-awayer. She will throw away anything you want her too! :)

Ok. Weekly Chores:

Monday: Kitchen Clean (Floors, Sink, Declutter - paper trash and bills, Clean out Dish drain).

Tuesday: Dust, Declutter, and Sweep Laundry and Mud Room. Dust and Declutter Living room.

Wednesday: Clean both bathrooms (mirror, sink, counter, floors toilet), take out all trash (our trash night is Wednesday).

Thursday: Mow and Clean out car. (Andrew already mowed some Wednesday, so my Thursday night duties will be quite light. Yeah yeah yeah!).

Friday: Bedroom Clean (Dust, Declutter). Vacuum all carpeted areas.

Saturday: Weed Eat (Andrew only).

There are still some modifications that need to be made. I then go on to have monthly chores, which I won't list all here, unless specifically requested. For example I have clean oven and microwave, clean out fridge (like sanitize and wipe shelves. I throw away food more often), vacuum out cars, etc.

I have some yearly chores too but they are just now taking shape. A few things that need done more often are moping the hardwood floors but that is so time consuming and I'm trying to be very realistic. I'm not going to have time to do that every single week, even though it needs it.

I realize that things probably need cleaned more often than this but I am the kind of person who has a hard time being motivated to do something if I can't get it all done. This is working very well for me since I seem to be able to do most everything in about an hour to and hour 1/2 each evening. That's usually all the free time I have! I also am not including gardening time, although my garden is in a very sorry weedy state right now. Oh well, at least things are growing!

That's all for now. Does anyone else have a cleaning system that is working?

P.S. I used to do Flylady - prebaby - but with baby, work, etc, it was just too much to clean my sink every night, and wipe down cabinets every week - even though they probably need it!

P.P.S. Baby #2 has been very active today and tonight. . . . like all day!

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Warning: Whining Ahead

I realize that the majority of you reading this blog already know what I'm about to post. Kids, babies, children (your own anyway) are the most amazing blessing you will ever receive but at the same time can be the biggest challenge you will ever face as well.

Exhibit A:


video


Abigail simply cannot stand it if I'm in the kitchen. I have my own psychological theory about this (although I'm not a psychologist). I think that she is just starved for some mommy time and I usually make dinner right when I get home from work. It doesn't take me long and it isn't anything fancy but if she won't let me cook, what will we eat?! She's hungry too (believe me!).

I intentionally sit with her and feed her supper, and have lots of quality reading and play time after supper. I also give her a bath, read lots of books, rocking, and prayer time before bed but it's still not enough. Oh how I miss being with my baby girl (most of the time).

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Our 4th Weekend

We had a wonderful weekend. Andrew and I were able to slip away on Friday and see a movie together (thanks Anne!) and then on Saturday we had a wonderful day filled with a parade, picnic, and party at Andrew's sister's apartment. I headed home early from that due to Abigail's extreme tiredness! :) I got to see a few fireworks in my own neighborhood, so that was fine with me.

Here is a picture of our little fire cracker on the 4th.


I took this picture of her at the parade. She liked it for the most part, except for the loud sirens. The parade started out with a bang by having the fire trucks and ambulance have to leave and make an actual call. I think it was those initial sirens that scared her.

Friday, July 03, 2009

Happy 3rd!

Andrew has the day off today. Yeah! He is currently at the chiropractor's office getting worked on. I got the WHOLE yard mowed last night, dishes done, laundry started, bathrooms cleaned, so I'm ready to do a little R&R.

Here are a few sweet pictures from Sunday.





Beautiful dress from Aunt Jenny.

Thursday, July 02, 2009

Absence

I did not really intend to be absent for so long. I guess I needed a break. Absence makes the heart grow fonder, right?!

Abigail and I are definitely on the mend. We just have slight coughs. I hope we're 100% by the 4th. I now wonder if perhaps my husband has picked up this little cold. However, when I asked him this morning after he sneezed if he was getting the cold he said, "we'll see". Argh! He's so weird and only saying that to annoy me. Enough said!

Tonight will be filled with much of the same. On my to-do list is weeding the garden, cleaning bathrooms, dusting, kitchen clean up. However, the thing I may really need to do is mow the grass. Andrew did it last time but I think it set him back in his back recovery so I'm going to try to do it this week.

And, I'll leave you with a few sweet pictures - cause I'm nice like that! :)
She looked so old sleeping like this. She loves sleeping with the pillow that Aunt Cindy got her (way before she was born). She's been using it like a body pillow and it is so cute!



Picture from Monday. She kept those sun glasses on for such a long time. Please ignore my car mess. It is on the long never-ending list of things that I need to clean.