Friday, January 31, 2014

Isaac Happenings

The leftover-containers and baggie drawer is so interesting!

Don't you think so?

'Course, "helping" Mom with the dishwasher is pretty fun, too!  I just love to take out all the silverware and chew on it along the way.

Lentils are so yummy!


Mommy gave me an empty egg carton to play with and I discovered that I could sit on it like a stool!

I really enjoy climbing these days, especially my little rocking chair.  Mommy calls me her "monkey boy," so here I am making monkey sounds for her!

Look how big I am!

Back and forth I go.

Climbing up is no problem!  Getting back down is something I'm still mastering.

It's a new climb!

I wonder if my daddy is coming home soon?

Until next time!

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Thankful Thursday

713.  The incredible sensation of feeling my baby kick for the first time (and many times over) this past week!  17 weeks along and lovin' it!

714.  Warm blueberry muffins right out of the oven (thank you, Nathan, for requesting them!)

715.  The delight of watching my firstborn be so adventurous on the playground :)

716.  A beautiful vase of fresh flowers gracing our kitchen table; a gift from a memorial service this past Sunday

717.  Isaac's hearty baby laughter that is so contagious

718.  The privilege of being a mother

719.  Lunch out with a sweet friend

720.  Getting sick (yet again) with a 24-hour head cold on Monday, which just so happened to be Nathan's day off, meaning that he could babysit all afternoon and I could sleep!

721.  Electricity

722.  Refrigerator magnets which kept my child happily busy for a nice chunk of time while I prepared dinner tonight

723.  Clean floors (at last!)

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Links Page Updated

Just thought I'd let you all know that I updated my Links page today.  I added a few new websites/pages/blogs that have proven to be encouraging resources as well as subtracted ones that are no longer in use.  Enjoy!

Monday, January 27, 2014

Operation Organization!

As I shared in a recent post, one of my goals for the new year has been to tackle several organizational projects where the second law of thermodynamics had clearly taken over territory in my home. After fighting so much illness lately, last week finally brought about some spare time for tending to these projects.

Bathroom cabinet #1: before.
(Can anyone say messy?)

Bathroom cabinet #1: after.
(Much better!)

Bathroom cabinet #2: before.

Bathroom cabinet #2: after.

My little helper.

Another project I worked on was the distribution of all of Isaac's outgrown baby clothes into clear, plastic bins according to size.
Here are the stacks of clothes ready to go into the bins.

And voila!  Another project completed!  There was even a leftover bin for the clothes he has yet to grow out of!

Somebody has recently discovered the great joys of climbing and thought these stacks of bins made the perfect jungle gym!

He loves to put anything that resembles a necklace around his neck: beads, ties, USB cables, scarves, etc.!

Love that smile!

Monkey boy on the move!

Kitchen Cabinet: before.

Kitchen cabinet: after.

Whew!  It felt great to get these projects accomplished!  Now, whenever I open these cabinets, I don't cringe anymore. :)  I was also able to tackle the basement monster and get it looking much better, but since I haven't finished cleaning the floors down there, I thought I would wait to post before and after pictures.
Stay tuned... :)

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Thankful Thursday

708.  Little boy sneakers

709.  Organized cabinets!

710.  A dishwasher

711.  My husband who is a good daddy

712.  A nice, warm bed in which to sleep --- off I go!  :)

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Ladies' Gathering

In between sicknesses at our house, I enjoyed hosting another ladies' gathering for the women of our church.  These are always fun times of getting to know one another better, making a craft, eating, and this time, playing a game.

Our craft was making "stained glass" candle holders using punched-out tissue paper and Mod Podge.

It's always fun to get to see each person's creativity come forth!

Here, Celeste decorates her candle holder to match her bedroom.

Makayla's candle.

Celeste's finished product.

Kaye's candle holder.

Francesca's artistic flair.

I was too busy leading a game and serving food to snap any more pictures.  But I think I can say that everyone had a good time! :)

Monday, January 20, 2014

Thought for the Day

In follow-up to my last post, I came across this quote in one of the books I am currently reading entitled, Loving the Little Years, by Rachel Jankovic.  I thought it was rather pertinent. :)

"So while your children are little, cultivate an attitude of sacrifice.  Sacrifice your peace for their fun.  Your clean kitchen floor for their help cracking eggs.  Your quiet moment for their long retelling of a dream that a friend of theirs allegedly had.  Prioritize your children far and away above the other work you need to get done.  They are the only part of your work that really matters."


Saturday, January 18, 2014

Life with My Little Boy

Well, this morning was just one of those mornings.

After four long days of caring for a sick, often fussy, constantly clingy baby, Isaac's incessant crying this morning really started to wear on me.  I left the dining room to grab something from the kitchen for his breakfast, and he cried.  I tried to take a shower while he played in his playpen in the bathroom, and he cried the entire time.  After I finished getting ready for the day, I rescued him from the playpen and carried him around with me, and still he cried.  Daddy came in briefly from a church work day and put him in his crib for some rest, and he cried and cried and cried.

My nerves were frazzled.  I was ready to scream.  I wanted to "pull my hair out" as the saying goes.

Here it was, Saturday morning, and I was ready to finally be productive; to exit survival mode and actually get some cleaning and organizing projects done around my house.  Yet, my child's loud cries were making it difficult to think straight, let alone get anything done.

I realized at that moment that I had a choice before me.  I could pursue my all-important projects and try to ignore Isaac's escalating cries...which I figured would be impossible since they filled the house and would probably only continue to frazzle my nerves until I exploded.  Or I could pursue fellowship with my once-again-very-needy child (who it seemed had needed me at every waking moment of the week...and many of the sleeping ones, too, and had no concept of the fact that I was drained).

With the options before me in my mind's eye, the choice seemed obvious.
I was a mom first and foremost.
The projects had waited all this time; they could certainly wait some more.  I didn't have a clue what was making my child so upset, but I knew I needed to try to comfort him; and besides, it was too early for a nap anyway, so there was no way he was going to go to sleep anytime soon.

With a sigh and a prayer, I picked Isaac up out of his bed and began to sooth his cries and wipe his tears.  Then, I strapped him into the Ergo carrier with the mission to create "a sanity moment" for myself while giving him the close cuddling he seemed to need.  I was desperate to regain some calmness in my soul, and my growling belly told me I had better make sure this little "sanity moment" included some food, too!

I turned on soothing music, popped some toast in the toaster, and brewed a cup of apple-cinnamon tea.  The toast done, I smeared almond butter and honey on for a tasty snack, and then the two of us relaxed at the kitchen table.

It's amazing what a few moments of stopping to smell the roses (or in my case, the cinnamon-apple tea) can do for a person!  The food and drink gave me strength, the music gave me peace, and the cuddles with my baby gave me assurance that choosing his needs over my own was the right decision.

Eventually, he did take his morning nap, allowing me to check off the first organizational project from my to-do list while he slept.  When he woke up, we tackled another one in the bathroom together where I was able to de-stress by de-cluttering, and Isaac had a ball "getting into" all sorts of new treasures (i.e. trash) from under the bathroom counters!  Then, with those projects behind us, we took a much-needed walk in the fresh air and sunshine.  And what do you know?  It turned out to be a most pleasant and productive day after all, despite the rocky beginning!

I share all this to let you know that despite the happy pictures I often share (like the ones below), not every day around here is perfect peaches and cream.  I have my share of hard moments, rough days, and frazzled nerves, just like anybody.  Yet, despite my failures and times of mommy-exhaustion, I am so grateful to be able to say that God is faithful all the time.  He never fails, never grows weary, and never leaves me to flounder on my own.  His mercies are new every morning, and His Word is the bread of strength for my needy soul.

I love being a mom and I truly delight in my child, but I am still learning every day what it means to be the kind of mom the Lord is pleased with; one who loves genuinely, unconditionally, and sacrificially.  It is a journey to be sure - one of excitement, difficulty, long days, short nights, and immeasurable rewards!


And now for a few pictures of the ever-adorable child God has blessed us with!  (The first several were taken before he got sick.)

Doesn't every mom have a picture of their child discovering the joys of toilet paper?

So that's why he was so quiet!

He managed to empty the entire roll before I realized he had gone missing!

Happy little ducky after bath time!

A new hat (albeit, a little small)!

Hammin' in up...

Trying to take it off.

Got it!

This picture cracks me up!  I was trying to catch his "Alfalfa" look and instead, caught him blinking with the funniest expression!  This was taken Day 1 of the stomach virus, but you wouldn't know it to see this face!

There's the "Alfalfa" look (see the hair sticking straight up?).

Another evening after he had thrown up all over me, himself, and the couch, while the couch cushions were drying in the hall, Isaac discovered what a fun climbing apparatus the couch became without that bulky cushion in the way!

King of the mountain.

Trying to stay hydrated.

A new little perch.

Yesterday, Nathan graciously offered to carry Isaac in the Ergo while he made dessert for youth game night.

Isaac loved this snuggle time with Daddy and had all sorts of questions about what was going on!

Poor little sickie-boy...

Love to see my man caring for his little boy!