Saturday, September 12, 2015

Life Lately & September Goals

I've done it again.  
Another short-term blog hiatus.  For the life of me, I really don't know how all the stay-at-home mom bloggers do it!

The second half of August turned out to be a little busier than expected, but it was a good busy.  If you follow me on Facebook or Instagram, then you may have seen some pictures of our upstairs bathroom renovation.  We are so close to completing it that I can practically taste it.  I'm planning to do a post about it once it's all finished up!  I'm pretty proud that we have been able to complete it without having to go into any debt.  :-)

So, that's where 2 weeks in August went - to installing bead board, painting, removing old grout, and then re-grouting the tile floor.  It was pretty crazy and the kids spent a lot of time at my grandmother's house, away from all the chaos.  The last of the plumbing fixtures arrived so we're ready to schedule the plumber for installation and then we'll move on towards lighting.  We love to save money on home projects when we can, but there are just some times when we feel it's best to leave things up to the pros.

The Teacher is back in school and our kids will begin preschool next week, so I'm hoping to get back to writing and interacting with all of you!

Since August was such a whirlwind, I'm not even going to rehash those goals.  

Let's just dive right in to this month - here is my plan for September goals.

1.  Have a date night with Kevin.
We just simply could not make this one happen in August, so I'm pushing it to this month.

2.  Have a mommy/son date with Brady.
This one is long overdue as well.  I can't wait for some special one-on-one time with him.  I may even see if Kevin wants to trade because I sense that Brady could use some one-on-one time with Daddy.

3.  Finish up necklace board.
I'm proud of myself for starting on this project, but now I need to push through and finish it up.  I'm anxious to see the final product and to finally get my necklaces more organized.

4.  Install plumbing & light fixtures in the upstairs bathroom.
The major grunt work has been completed and now we move onto the "fun" part like putting it all together.

5.  Finish reading Raising Your Spirited Child
I'm too embarrassed to even talk about this.

6.  Consign/donate the kid's clothes.
It's consignment sale season and I'm ready to clear out as much as we can.  I'm holding onto Brady's clothes for Davis, but purging as much of Savannah's and Davis' clothes as I am able.  If I weren't trying to save up for a few things, then I'd donate every last bit of it.  I love purging!

7.  Buy a new computer.
This has been on our list for a while now, but the funds just recently became available.  We are thankful to be able to move forward on this and I hope it will allow for more blogging!  Sharing a laptop with my teacher husband {who also just started grad school classes} has not been easy.  Feel free to give me your suggestions on a good laptop that will primarily be used for blogging and web browsing.

8.  Get both vehicles inspected.
It's that time of year and I'm anticipating some hefty repairs.  Both of our vehicles are over 10 years old, so it's to be expected.  I'll be pleasantly surprised if I'm wrong though!

There you have it.  I'll report back at the end of the month to let you know how I did!

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What are your goals this month?

photo source

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Friday, August 28, 2015

Davis at 10 Months

This month has flown by and you are not slowing down either. 

Here is what you are up to these days.

*  You are nursing 4 times a day, with your first feeding between 7-7:30am and your final feeding between 7-7:30pm.  You are nursing fine, but I try to go in another room so that you aren't distracted.  Up until just recently, you had been waking early in the morning, so I was nursing you an extra time in the early morning {anywhere between 5-6am}.  I'm thankful that you are back to sleeping 12 hours at night.    

*  You are eating soft table foods now.  You love everything we've given you - oatmeal, Cheerios, green beans, peas, soft carrots, corn, steamed brocolli, bread, applesauce, strawberries, blueberries, bananas, clementines, grapes, and some small pieces of chicken and ground beef - so far.

 *  You are back to sleeping 12 hours at night, usually from 7-7:30pm to 7-7:30am.  For a few weeks, you started waking around 5am or so and would not go back to sleep unless I nursed you.  I was starting to get a little concerned when it continued, but backing your bedtime up helped get you back on track.  I'm so thankful!

*  You have been struggling with naps lately.  I don't know if it's teething, the result of our travelling and vacation back in July/early August, or being displaced while we complete the bathroom renovation, but your naps have been inconsistent.  Now that your nighttime sleep is back on track, we're going to focus on daytime naps next.

*  You are still wearing size 4 diapers.

*  You are still wearing 9-12 months clothes.

*  You are crawling all over the place.  You don't like to be contained much, which means we have to watch you very carefully.  You can move pretty quickly, so turning around for a second can be all it takes.

*  You are working on standing up.  You love to pull up on furniture, although you aren't cruising just yet.  It's amazing how you move from one milestone to the next so quickly.

*  You prefer to be on the go, so your time in the Exersaucer and Johnny Jump Up are pretty much non existent.  You'd much rather be exploring!

*  You are back to being a happy and content baby.  Even when you weren't sleeping/napping as well, you were still a pretty happy baby as long as you were being held.  I could tell something was "off" though and I'm so glad you are more rested and back to your laid-back self.

*  You can play pretty well by yourself, but you love being with your siblings.  I love seeing you interact with them.  Brady has definitely taken more of an interest in you lately, although I have to watch him to make sure he's not too rough.  I think he's ready for a wrestling partner!  Savannah has always loved spending time with you, but she keeps a good eye on you now that you are mobile.  She is a huge help to me.

*  You love it when I read to you.  I've been bad about reading to you consistently, but I've been working on it more lately and you get so excited.  You end up playing with the pages more than anything, but you often giggle and smile at the pictures.  It's the cutest thing ever.

*  You are still holding out for more teeth.  You are working on 2 more bottom teeth and then 4 top teeth.  I can feel them, but they haven't decided to make their appearance yet.

*  You still suck your thumb.  Despite what people say, I think it's really helpful.  When you are tired and ready for nap, you pop it right in!

*  You have officially switched rooms!  After your sleep problems, I decided to put you in a room by yourself.  I probably should have set it up this way from the start, but I was not sure that Brady was ready to share a room.  Then we had to deal with "bedtime boot camp" when we moved him from a crib to a twin bed.  I thought we'd never be able to keep that boy in his bed!  We moved Brady in with Savannah and you moved into his old room all by yourself.  It's working out really well - you get to nap in a crib in your own room while the kids are free to play in their rooms and not disturb you {we had been putting you in the pack n' play in our room for naps}.

* * * * * *

I cannot believe how quickly the time is passing.  In another couple of months, we will be celebrating your first birthday.  That seems impossible!  You have been such a sweet addition to our family and you are an absolute joy.  I find myself trying to soak up every last second of you at this age.  It's such a priceless time that I will never get back and it makes me a little sad.  I know that I can't keep you this little forever.  I don't know what is to come and where God will take you, but I look forward to having a front row seat!  I love you so very much, Davis John!

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Monday, August 10, 2015

6 Years Without Him

I can hardly wrap my head around the fact that our firstborn would have been 6 years old on Friday.  As I mentioned in the video that I posted on my Facebook page, we celebrated Andrew's birthday the day before, since we had some plans with family who were in town on his actual birthday.

Our day was really nice.  We usually keep things simple and quiet, which is good for me.  The past couple of years, our day has looked fairly similar.

We started the off around 11:00am at the cemetery.  We left some fresh flowers and released some balloons.  Each of us released a balloon, so there were a total of 5.  The kids balloons were very true to themselves - Savannah released a princess balloon and Brady released a Spiderman balloon.  We picked out Elmo for Davis because it's only a matter of time before he loves Elmo.  :-)

The kids ran around for a bit and then we hopped in the car to grab some lunch at Red Robin.  We really enjoy that restaurant because it's so kid friendly.

We came home and had some birthday cake for dessert before nap time began.  My family arrived to town later in the day, so we spent the evening with them.

Our day was simple, but it was some good family time.  I love doing these special things together as a family.  The kids don't understand everything about having sibling in heaven, but I hope that someday it will make more sense and that it makes heaven more real to them.  They still think that heaven is the cemetery itself, so I'm hoping that will click at some point.  :-)

As for where I am emotionally, I can honestly say that I'm doing really well.

Do I still think about Andrew every day?  Most definitely.

Do I miss him and wonder "what if?" things had turned out differently?  Absolutely.

Does my heart ache a little bit when I think about everything I'm missing with him?  Yes, indeed.

All of those statements are true, but I can also say that when I think about Andrew, most of the time I smile.  When I see little 6 year old boys, I think of him and it helps me imagine how tall he might have been at that age or what color his hair might have been.

I don't let my mind go too far into the "what ifs" though because I will never know.  I am not privy to those answers.  I also know that God foreknew that I would be raising the three beautiful children that I do have.  I can't imagine not having them either, so I don't even let myself go too far down that path.

I'm raising the ones he allowed me to keep, and I look forward to heaven all the more because I know I will see our Andrew and meet our Charlie.    

The missing will probably never go away, but I believe it's a healthy missing.  When you are a mother, part of your DNA lives outside of your body, so I think it's only natural to feel like you are missing a part of yourself when your child is gone.

But, I'm thankful that God has allowed us to move forward and to miss him in a way that points us to what is to come in eternity {rather than what we are lacking here}...a time where there will be no more tears, no more death, and no more pain.  I love so many things about my life, but I look forward to heaven!

We are thankful to those of you who left sweet messages and have been praying for us.  It means so much to us and we are grateful.
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