Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Signs of the New Year?

Another pleasant surprise this morning while I was baking my birthday cake/New Year's cake. Winter makes me appreciate the sunshine so much more. Praise God for different seasons!

The New Year always makes me a little more introspective. L and I make goals every year, and so it always puts into perspective how we want to live our lives. We've discussed making some changes to simplify our lives a little bit, and what will remain the same. It's been a great conversation piece the past few days.

Happy New Year, All!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008


So this is how L and I have been spending some of our evenings since Christmas. This was part of my Christmas gift from my mom. I tried to think of something for her to put under the tree for me, and this was one of the few items. Games, conversation, and books are much better ways to spend our evenings than in front of the television, which we've become a little too familiar with.

Anyway, it's been some fun "date nights" so far... what can I say, date night is different now that we have a kiddo. :) I will admit that we're not great at the game, and have stretched a little bit on words, but hey, we can play how we want, right?

Anyone else have some fun, cheap date night activities?

And the Motivation Keeps On Coming

More proof that our kiddo walks in small amounts of snow.

For some reason this is such a big deal. Kids can get very heavy when they're bundled up, plus carrying whatever it is I need to take with me. So, good job, E!! Keep it up!!

So this break has been pretty productive, thankfully. This is what we've done so far:

1. Found places to put E's toys. I don't know if this is a challenge to anyone else, but wow, this took a little while. Still, we conquered.
2. Cleared out our "family" closet (yes, there is only one big closet for all three of us to share), and found space for #2's stuff.
3. Went through E's dresser and found a way to condense her clothing down to three drawers, thus creating two drawers for #2.
4. Organized E's clothing totes downstairs so that a friend of ours can borrow them. This is going to create so much more space there!
5. Play. Come on, E and I are on vacation, and we're going to enjoy it!!

What we're still doing/plan to do:
1. We've been stripping the border off of the wall in our room for some time without much success. I think they superglued it to the wall or something. L read somewhere that vinegar and water is a great wall paper stripper. Oh, vinegar, now I love you even more...
2. Paint our room.
3. Play some more.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Glimpse of Sunshine?

We have made some serious progress in the way of E going outside in her snow pants. It was fun getting her out in the snow (and rain) the past couple of days. Yesterday we just took her outside in her pants, but today we put her snow pants on, and she was pretty comfortable (see pic below). By the way, if you look at the picture above you'll notice some sunshine behind us. I think it's the first glimpse of sun we've had in days... and boy, it really lifted our spirits.

I've also been a little more motivated to cook the past few days. Sometimes I really enjoy being in the kitchen, and this was one of those weeks. Some of the recipes were so/so, but one that we all enjoyed was this recipe. When all three of us like something, it must be a success. We'll be making this one again soon, and will probably end up in our regular food routine at some point.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Christmas and Outdoor Plumbing

We hope that you all had a lovely Christmas. We had our own little Christmas on Sunday, which consisted of us giving E her gift and her stocking, going to church and hanging out for a long time afterward, going outside, and just playing in general. We read the Christmas story to her (well the kid version in her bible at least). Since her aunt and uncle got her the Christmas story as a gift, she keeps bringing it over to me to read, and calls it "Jesus".

We spent Christmas Eve with my family, and Christmas Day with L's family. E handled the trip pretty well, though, she was exhausted by the end of it. She loved all of the attention, no doubt, and had fun seeing some of her cousins and the rest of the family. She's been talking about Papa since we left (I don't think it matters which one), so it's sweet seeing that attachment grow.

Anyway, it was a fun holiday, and it's nice to have some of time off to relax and hang out with E. In fact, I don't go back until the 7th of January, so we'll have lots of time together to play with all of the new toys. Thankfully I've gotten the motivation back to clean and organize my house, so let's hope it lasts.

This is E peeking to see which Aunt and Uncle were coming next.

Oh, and we should also say that we had our ultrasound this week, and found out that we're expecting a boy this time around! Our ultrasound tech called it "outdoor plumbing". We're excited, but I was especially so when L's mom got us a little blue sleeper for Christmas. For some reason it just made it more real. That was a great gift to find out, no doubt.

Anyway, we hope that all of you are having a great time with friends and family, and that we all have beautiful surprises in 2009. God bless!

Monday, December 15, 2008

"What Do You Want for Christmas?"

Really, I have no idea. Not a clue. I don't know what to tell L, or either set of parents, or my grandparents. You'd think that if you never buy anything for yourself over the year that you can come up with ideas for others by the end of it. Nope. Still nothing.

Part of this could be because I don't shop. I've heard some women say that they enjoyed shopping more once the kiddos came along - it acts as an outlet. To me, it's the same. I didn't enjoy shopping before, and now with a kiddo, it's even more burdensome. So maybe I don't want anything because I don't know what's out there? And am I the only female who doesn't like shopping?

Sigh. I should probably come up with something. Any ideas?

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Last night was L's company Christmas party, which basically means it's the one time of year all three of us get dressed up. As E was dressed in her Christmas dress, we had the great, bright idea to get some Christmas photos of her. Um... it didn't really work out, but the photo above was one of the ones that were okay.

This was our sixth company party with L's company, and I will admit that his company does a great job each time. The party was at an upscale, we-couldn't-afford-to-eat-there-unless-it-was-a-special-occasion-kinda-place, with large windows overlooking the water and the snowfall. The parties are always family friendly - so friendly, that there are gifts bought for each child in the company. After dinner and dessert, the kiddos find the gift with their name and can tear into it. E got a Little People toy of some sort, and she LOVED it.

E was able to sit with her little friend, B, who is like a foot taller, but like two months older. :) They fed each other, fought over plates, babbled to each other, ate off of the other's plate. It was cute.

E's daycare worker was also there, as she is married to one of L's co-workers. At first it seemed like E was a little skeptical like "Why are you out of the house?" kinda thing, but then the rest of the night if she wasn't with B, she wanted to be with D, sitting on her lap, eating off of her plate, eating things for her she wouldn't eat for us. It's moments like that I realized we are SO blessed to have found someone who loves E as much as E loves her. D is like a third grandmother to E (and a thousand other kiddos). D has a gift that not many other people have - like God created her to take care of children. I'm glad that there are women out there like her.

All in all, it was a great night full of good friend and great company. Hope you guys have great parties like this one!

Friday, December 12, 2008

How Have You Been Blessed?

The month of November was a rather hectic and irritating month for us. This is mostly because of our vehicles. Who knew inanimate objects could cause so many headaches? I noticed as I was driving from work one day that our Sebring was acting very strangely, and had a difficult time accelerating. Lance didn't have much time to do any work himself, so we took in to the mechanic. It's the transmission. Right. Not a cheap fix, but okay, we'll suck it up and pay it.

Life moves on, and I'm going to get E from daycare in our old, rusty Saturn when I switched from reverse into drive, and my car starts convulsing. Seriously. It was terrible. We find out that it's a semi-priced fix, but worth almost as much as the thing is worth. So, we decide to junk and get a different car.

Well, that leaves us with zero cars. And while L walks to work every day, my job isn't one that I can just be dropped off and picked up in eight hours. My car IS my office. So we drove down to L's parents and they were kind enough to let us borrow an extra vehicle they had. Yay, we have a car again until we find another car or our Sebring gets fixed.

What do you know? Two or three days after driving the thing, that car is losing brake fluid at a much faster pace than it should. Is there a leak? Probably, but L didn't have time to fix it before I had to work the next day.

Praise God that L works for a company that is incredibly laid back in their policies. Family members are allowed to drive the company vehicles. I prayed a million times that I wouldn't break it (seriously, I felt like I broke every vehicle I drove). I did NOT want to be the wife that broke the company car, you know?

My prayers were answered, the truck didn't break, but we had to buy a vehicle for me to drive. Now, L and I were pretty happy with our two paid off vehicles. Honestly I was hoping our Saturn would last a lot longer than what it did. We've also tried to prevent taking on any more debt - it certainly has made us feel like a slave (Proverbs 22:7).

Quite honestly, I was pretty disheartened. L and I have made some serious sacrifices to save what we've saved, and we were so very very close to being to our goal for the year. Now, though, I am just so thankful that God has given us the desire to make those sacrifices, as well as the means to save. Just last night we've heard of three people in our church losing their jobs, and here I am, complaining that I have to take some of our savings to buy a car. Praise God that we have steady money coming in, and that we still have money in our savings. Actually, that's just one area in which we're blessed.

In the spirit of the Christmas season, how do you feel that God has blessed you? He's a mighty, wonderful God that we serve. Let's praise Him in this.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

The Tree Goes Up

I was pretty excited this year about getting a tree and watching E decorate with us. It was pretty fun - we played Christmas music, sipped hot chocolate, and pulled out our decorations. E had a good time - she tried putting the bulbs on the tree, but didn't quite catch the concept of the hook, so she mostly handed us the decorations. The tree has helped teach her how to discriminate colors, and she's great at leaving the decorations alone. Good times.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

The Snow is Here to Stay

So I guess I wasn't really ready to "be back" as far as the blogging world goes. Life gets a little busy, and I forget to blog or just don't have the time to do it. Ah well. I hope everyone is having a lovely holiday season thus far.

The pregnancy is going well. Getting more and more energy. Able to cook meat again. Wanting salads again. Feeling the desire and having the stamina to contact friends and see them. Life is good.

I'm feeling a bit more pressure to know what we're going to do after baby #2 is born as far as my job goes. My supervisor and my daycare worker have just kind of mentioned it in passing, and really I don't know what to say. The pay is good, but once daycare is taken out for two kiddos, it kinda makes you wonder at what point do you decide to stay home full time?

Anyway, we've gotten quite a bit of snow lately. E seems to have a fascination with it, but as soon as her feet touches the ground, she freaks out. Today we did make some progress - at least she's saying "cheese" in this picture. She would stand in one spot and refuse to move unless I carried her and then she threw a fit when I brought her inside. Hmm.... tricky tricky kiddo to figure out sometimes. :)

Anyway, with all of this snow on the ground, I am really in the Christmas spirit. I have our stockings nearly finished - just need to do the embroidery. We've been reading the Christmas story to E, and she seems to enjoy it. I'm about half way finished with the shopping - and we really don't buy much, so there's not much left to do... I just need to do it.

With that said, I think it's time to do a little online shopping... hope you all have a great week!