Sunday, November 4, 2012
It is so hard to imagine a year ago, she was nestled inside my belly. And how wild that now I can't imagine a day without her. She has changed my life in more ways than I could ever anticipate. I feel so completely blessed by her sweetness and her easy-going personality. She has made the transition for us practically effortless. We really hit the jackpot with her! If ever there was a day I could go on and on about how great she is, I'd think it'd be today, right?? The girl has slept through the night since about four months. She eats just about everything. No wait, she definitely eats everything if you put it in front of her! She is content playing by herself. She is a quiet girl who likes to soak up her environment and just take it all in. She smiles whenever I do anything silly. She is such a love! One of the first things she learned to do on command was give kisses. I just melt! Her favorite stuffed animal is Mr. Fox, and she could just sit there and give him kisses and squeezes all day. I cannot believe how lucky we've gotten with her. Truly blessed.
Winnie was such a happy birthday girl today. She let out plenty of squeals of excitement along the way, too! The only time she wasn't at her happiest was when we had to take her dessert away. She didn't like that. So she cried. And we let her because it was her birthday.
Oh my sweet Winnie. You make me one very, very happy mama. I am so glad we got to spoil you today and show you how to celebrate in fashion. You will never know just how much I adore everything last, little thing about you. Happy first birthday, my girl.
Tuesday, September 11, 2012
--I pinned this link the other day because it seemed close to home... I am a newlywed remember?! How great to add a few new tools to my belt right off the get-go. After reading it, I felt totally inspired and ready to tackle this marriage/partnership in a healthy, happy way. I would ordinarily just post the link on here in hopes that you'd follow it and read the article. But this is too good not to just put straight on here. It's helping me and I hope it can help someone else see things differently, too!
It’s true: A happy wife makes a happy life. Please don’t use moodiness as an attempt to manipulate your man, but in all things rejoice, because that’s the right thing to do. (1 Thessaonians 5:16; Philippians 4:4)
2.Honor His Wishes
Give weight to what your husband thinks is important. Make those things a priority that matter most to him, whether it’s having dinner ready when he gets home from work or keeping the house tidy or limiting computer time. Don’t make him ask twice. (Philippians 2:4)
3.Give Him Your Undivided Attention
Yes, I know that women are masters of multi-tasking, but when your husband is speaking to you, make a point to lay other tasks aside, look into his eyes, and listen to what he is saying with the goal of understanding and remembering his words.
Have you ever been around a person who won’t let you finish a sentence? That gets old fast. Even if you think you already know what your husband is going to say, allowing him to say it without cutting him off mid-sentence shows both respect and common courtesy.
5.Emphasize His Good Points
Sure, he has his faults (as do you), but dwelling on them will only make you (both) miserable. Choose instead to focus on those qualities in your husband that you most admire. (Philippians 4:8)
6.Pray for Him
Ruth Graham advises wives to “tell your mate the positive, and tell God the negative.” Take your concerns to God. Faithfully lift up your husband in prayer every day, and you will likely notice a transformation not only in him, but in yourself, as well. (Philipians 4:6-7; 1 Thessalonians 5:17)
Your husband is a grown man, so don’t treat him like a two-year-old. Leave room for God to work. You are not the Holy Spirit, so do not try to do His job.
Cultivate an attitude of gratitude. Don’t take your husband for granted. Be appreciative for everything he does for you, whether big or small. Always say thank you. (1 Thessalonians 5:18; Ephesians 5:20)
9.Smile at Him
Smiles spread happiness. Smiles have even been shown to create happiness. Smiles are contagious. And a smile makes any woman more beautiful.
Did you know that the way you respond (or don’t respond) to your husband’s romantic overtures has a profound effect on his self-confidence? Don’t slap him away when he tries to hug you or make excuses when he’s in the mood. Your enthusiastic cooperation and reciprocation will not only assure him of your love, but will make him feel well-respected, too. (1 Corinthians 7:3-5)
11.Eyes Only for Him
Don’t compare your husband unfavorably to other men, real or imaginary. It is neither fair nor respectful and will only breed trouble and discontent. Avoid watching movies or reading books that might cause you to stumble in this area, as well. (Psalm 19:14; Proverbs 4:23)
12.Kiss Him Goodbye
I once read about a study done in Germany which found that men whose wives kissed them goodbye every morning were more successful than those who weren’t kissed. Success and respect often go hand-in-hand, so be sure to send him off right, and don’t forget to greet him with a kiss when he returns home, for good measure. (2 Corinthians 13:12)
13.Prepare His Favorite Foods
Although the rest of the family is not overly-fond of spaghetti, my husband loves it, so I try to make it at least two or three times a month as a way to honor him. Next time you’re planning meals, give special consideration to your husband’s preferences. (Proverbs 31:14-15)
I love to sit near my husband, whether at home or away. Our church shares potluck dinners every Sunday afternoon, and although the men and women normally sit separately to visit, I like to position myself close enough to my husband that I can listen to the conversation, as I think everything he says is so interesting. At home, I’ll take my book or handwork to whatever room in the house he’s working in, just to be close to him, because I enjoy his company, even when neither of us is talking.
Nobody wants to be around a whiner or complainer. It is grating on the nerves. Remember the serenity prayer: accept the things you can’t change, courageously change the things you can, seek wisdom to know the difference. (Philippians 2:14)
16.Resist the Urge to Correct
I know one wife whose spouse can’t tell a story without her stopping him fifteen times to correct inconsequential details: “It wasn’t Monday evening, it was Monday afternoon…. It wasn’t blue, it was turquoise…. He didn’t ride the bus, he took a shuttle.” Please. Please. Please. Don’t ever do that to your husband — or to anyone else, for that matter! (Proverbs 17:28)
17.Dress to Please Him
Take care of your appearance. Choose clothes your husband finds flattering, both in public and around the house.
18.Keep the House Tidy
To the best of your abilities, try to maintain a clean and orderly home. Seek to make it a haven of rest for your entire family. (Proverbs 31:27)
Do not pressure your husband to keep up with the Jonses. Take satisfaction in the lifestyle he is able to provide for you. (1 Timothy 6:6-10; Hebrews 13:5)
20.Take His Advice
Do not dismiss his opinions lightly, especially when you’ve asked for his counsel in the first place. Make every effort to follow your husband’s advice.
Voiced compliments and heartfelt praise are always welcome, but you should also make it your habit to just look at your husband in a respectful, appreciative way. Think kind thoughts toward him. He’ll be able to see the admiration in your eyes. (Luke 6:45)
22.Protect His Name
Honor your husband in the way you speak of him to family and friends. Guard his reputation and do not let minor disagreements at home cause you to speak ill of him in public. Live in such a way that it will be obvious to others why your husband married you in the first place. (Proverbs 12:4; 22:1)
23.Forgive His Shortcomings
In the words of Ruth Bell Graham, “A happy marriage is the union of two good forgivers.” Please do not hold grudges against your husband. Do not allow a root of bitterness or resentment find a home in your heart. Forgive your husband freely, as Christ has forgiven you. (Mark 11:25; Matthew 18:21-35)
You are not always right, and you do not always have to have the last word. Be the first to say, “I’m sorry.” Be willing to accept the blame. It takes two to argue, so “abandon a quarrel before it breaks out.” (Proverbs 17:14; 21:19; 25:24)
25.Follow His Lead
If you want your husband to lead, you must be willing to follow. Neither a body nor a family can function well with two heads. Learn to defer to your husband’s wishes and let final decisions rest with him. (Ephesians 5:22-24)
This list is written by a woman named Jennifer Flanders, who also wrote a book called Love Your Husband, Love Yourself. Here is a link to her blog http://lovinglifeathome.wordpress.com/2012/08/06/25-ways-to-communicate-respect/
Get inspired and enjoy!
She is ten months old! That first birthday is quickly approaching and I can't decide whether I am more excited or sad that my baby girl is growing up. There is absolutely no stopping it from happening. She is becoming quite the mobil, curious, silly, sneaky girl and each day it is getting harder and harder to keep up with her. But talk about rewarding! The things she learns in the span of one day rattles my brain. I love hearing her babble, almost like she's having a full on conversation with herself. I love watching her crawl, and stand up and crouch. I have recently decided to start giving her free reign to feed herself at some meals. Yesterday I mashed up some peas and she just thought it was the funnest thing in the world to grab them with her fingers and shove it in her mouth. She has this odd habbit of every time she takes a bite, she immediately puts her fist in her mouth. It can get real tiresome if I'm spoon feeding her purees. Must be teething. I've learned when in doubt, crabby, tired, not tired, rashy, cranky, screaming, fever...blame it on the teething. Anyway, I've done the same with shredded bits of apple. She enjoys the freedom and learning how to be more self sufficient. And let me tell you, the girls LOVES her water! In the beginning it was hard just getting her to take one sip of it, but now she drinks non stop it seems. After the honeymoon I declared that Winnie and I are inseperable for life. I just don't think I could go another day without seeing her, touching her, kissing her, making her laugh.... it was too hard! So now, we spend every second together just about. Except when I have to work or when she's sleeping and even still it's hard to leave her! She thinks I'm pretty funny. Mind you, I do whatever it takes, as silly or embarassing as it may be, to make her laugh. Yesterday morning as I was mopping the floors, I had her bouncer positioned right at the landing of the kitchen into the family room, and we were listening to the wedding CD... well she just thought it was the funniest thing to watch me dance with no inhibition. Frank even had to join in. Just laughing away! I do it for her. I love those moments.
More about my sweetie---
anything involving being outside
discovering new things
making pouty faces
her Mimi and grandpa
unfolding newly folded clothes
Not a fan of:
sitting in the same spot for more than 5 seconds
She's a hoot. Gotta love her!
Monday, September 10, 2012
Thursday, May 17, 2012
Life has been crazy busy and so good. Feels like we've been living in the fast lane for the last year. I wouldn't change a thing! Well maybe something, but I can't think of what. It's been stressful, trying, triumphant and very, very rewarding. We moved a little over two months ago. Talk about a big adjustment! No longer did we have mom and dad close by to run to (aside from being nearly right across the street from them now :)), to make us dinner when we were too tired and too broke to do it ourselves.. oh the changes we face when we finally have to grow up and move on!
I love our place. It is so us. We have a big front and back yard, and a quaint living space, really. I just started my own garden. Lettuce, carrots, tomatoes, peppers... yumm!! Oh, but it just didn't feel complete until we welcomed a new doggy into our home and into our family! Frank, previously Dartagnon, came to us from another family who was forced to give him up. I just can't think for the life of me why or how someone could give him away. He's an 18 month old Bernese Mountain Dog and he is sweeter than sweet. In fact, I just so happen to think he is sweeter than the half dozen sweety chocolately cupcakes he devoured the other day. Ok, so maybe he has some things to work through. But who doesn't? Despite the unforseen astronomical vet bill, we still love him fiercely. He brings such a dynamic aspect to our home. Frank adores us. I mean, really adores us. He's a whole lotta dog, a whopping 100lbs and still growing! But he's gentle and listens better than Kyle most days ;) Winnie thinks he's pretty special, too.
Kyle is still busy with school and work and being a new daddy. Oh, and to top it all off, he is starting training to become a firefighter. The guy just can't get enough of life-- it's one of the things I love most about him. Eventhough the days are long and grueling, he wants more. A lot more. Most don't know how he does it. But I do. He's magic. There, the secret's out!
Winnie recently turned six...six...SIX months old. Wait, hold the phone, where did the time go?! Will I always be asking that? I have a feeling the answer is yes. That little girl. Oh my goodness, I could talk about her for days. It's true. My world revolves around this little person. She is growing and becoming so playful and silly, and yet still has her serious side from time to time. She sits on her own. She has a funny giggle. She loves when we pop up and scare her. She puts up with my terrible singing and uncoordinated dance moves, and loves me beyond all things. She needs me. And I have come to realize that I really need her. She makes life so fascinating and thrilling, madening sometimes, but again, I wouldn't change a thing. Now that Winnie is eating solid foods, our feeding times have gotten much more pleasant and less frustrating. She will eat you under the table any day of the week! Her favorite is sweet potato. And bananas. And pears. And peas. And carrots-- can't forget about carrots! From the beginning we called her Winn The Bin, I don't really know why or how we came up with that nickname, but it's stuck. Tonight, she pooped in the bath. And yes, I was in it with her. Usually I love our bathtime together, but after scooping her doodies out with my bare hands, I can't fathom when we will share that time again. I'm sure by tomorrow it'll all be forgotten, but for right now-- yuck!! Was that too much? ;-) I'm going to keep going. If that's alright with you? Winn sleeps through the night most nights. After finally transitioning her into the crib (yes, it took us until she was about 5 months because we were just flat out scared of what it'd be like) bedtime actually got much easier. I think she likes the freedom. She is a real water baby! I mean, she LOVES it. She splashes and smiles constantly. And now that warm weather has finally showed up at our doorstep, we are soaking up every ounce of it we can.
It's funny how a year and a half ago how different life was. And now I can't even picture that life we were once living. Of course, I miss the freedom every once and a while, and alone time, but wow, a life without my sweet Winnie girl? Cannot begin to think of that! And luckily, I don't have to :) Ok, I feel better now. Who knows when I'll be back again, but I hope it's soon. Goodnight!
Saturday, March 31, 2012
Tuesday, January 24, 2012
I don't remember exactly when I learned to read on my own, but I'm sure it was a monumental day. I loved the quirkiness and rhyming rhythm of Dr Seus. I loved the family togetherness of the barenstien(?) bears. The classic appeal of toad and frog. Ah it is all too much. Nostalgia is at an all time high!!
High school was when my book preference really took a transformation. In my AP english class, we had a required reading list. I took one look at it and didn't find one title I had ever heard of! Boy did that get me out of the box. I started reading novels like Me Talk Pretty One Day and Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance. I realized there was more out there for me than teen girl melodramas. I discovered a new world in books. I still get excited each time I open a new cover. Where will I go today? What will I be doing? I root myself in the story and allow myself to get taken to another place. It awakens my soul and broadens my imagination.
I hope Winnie will like to read one day. I hope she will find it enchanting and life altering. I want to share with her my favorite books and hope she keeps coming back for more.
I always wanted to be with someone who loved to read almost as much as I do. I envisioned late nights in bed as we both hold tight to the pages completely enthralled with our stories. I pictured early Sunday mornings reading the newspaper together and sharing a cup of coffee.
Kyle likes to read. No wait. He loves it. Hallelujah! Crisis averted.
I recently started my first Steven King novel. It's called 11/22/63. It's over 800 pages! Easily the longest book I will have read. My mom finished it in a matter of days. Piece of cake for her. I know without a doubt that is who I got my fierce desire for reading from. Watching how glued she was to the thing, I can only imagine it's good. It's about time travel and a man's quest to stop the assassination of JFK. So far, 150 pages in, I'm hooked.
In fact, I must go. I have more to read!
Monday, January 23, 2012
In the past couple of months, we have undergone quite a few changes. And besides the most obvious one, our new addition to the family, we also managed to loose one as well. My beloved cat, Skeeter, has a few issues. Ok, the cat is seriously bonkers. But I love him. Probably, wait, no definitely, more than I should. Before making his home permanately outdoors, he peed all over our bed, thus forcing us to buy a new mattress (which we really couldn't afford, so we had to buy an inexpensive, and just so happens to be an extremely firm one.. causing much back pain for both of us and a lot of trouble falling asleep because it feels like laying on wood floors). For the longest time, it has been hard for me to admit this harsh reality about my cat to others. I was, and continue to be, ashamed that I let matters go as far as they did. It put so much strain on the relationship between me and Ky. I still don't know why I let it get between us like it did. My stubbornness has GOT TO GO! Let me continue. He then peed on our couch, multiple times. We are still trying to get the stench out. Cat urine is honestly the worst smell. It's the kind that permeates all things around it, and the kind that you can't get out of your nose no matter how hard you try. He also managed to pee in the nursery, before it was a nursery of course. So every once in a while, the smell comes wafting back. Ugh. It is an absolute nightmare, one that we are fighting to end once and for all. He has caused so much irrepairable damage. I am exceptionally cranky today because of my poor nights sleep. Awful. Miserable. And I can't even blame the baby. What is this!? We were blessed with a good sleeper and I can hardly reap the benefits. Boo. And yet, I continue to love him. One will never know or begin to understand why, not even me.
On to other matters..
From the beginning, breastfeeding has been a challenge for us. Winnie and me, that is. At first, it was just painful. Excrutiating hardly describes it. Sometimes, I could do nothing but cry as I tried to feed my baby. Eventually the pain subsided and we moved on to other issues. She began to get fussy almost every time she nursed. It was so hard to get her to latch on and be content. It has been such an internal struggle for me, a new mom. Not only was I feeling downhearted because it wasn't easy, but what is a brand new mommy like me to do when she can't provide for her baby? I tried not to get too down on myself about it because it only made things worse. I know it's not always a piece of cake for people, and certainly not me. But every once in a while, the feelings of not being enough, not being sufficient for my child creep back in. I know I am a good mother, and in some form or another, I will find a way to nurish my baby. But the road has been and continues to be a long and challenging one. She still gets fussy from time to time, and it's hard to tell if she is getting enough. My newest worry is her constant spitting up. More times than not, she will spit up quite a bit after she eats. It is a lot. I am not overexaggerating. Is she having a bad reaction? It is something I ate? Is she allergic? I just don't know. It is exhausting. And yet, I won't give up. I have gotten used to the fact that most of the time I am covered in spit up. We even joke sometimes that I have become immune to the smell. And it doesn't smell nice. Oh the wonders of mommyhood...
Since sitting down to write this post, I have had to get up three times to calm my crying baby. It's bedtime, and definitely not her favorite time of the day. I've had to learn to let her just cry it out sometimes. As hard as it is, she sleeps so much longer and deeper because of it. It just makes me so sad listening to her unhappy though!
Being faced with these struggles has tested me in more ways than I can count. At the end of the day, I am grateful. For gaining more patience. For becoming a nurturer. For earning strength and for letting go of what I cannot change. I am grateful for battles big and little, because they shape me and force me to grow. And that is a good feeling.
Wednesday, January 18, 2012
This girl smiles like it's goin outta style. LOVE her! Can't wait for more snow days spent with my little family. I was just thinking... next year is going to be so different with her when it snows. She might actually wanna play in it, or my guess.. eat it! ha!
Tuesday, January 17, 2012
Monday, January 16, 2012
Tonight for dinner I made:
-spicy roasted sweet potatoes (!!)
They weren't kiddin-- these babies are SPICY! Loved em. The recipe is super easy. All you need is cayenne pepper (1/2t), chili powder (1/2t), garlic powder (1/2t) and some salt. Coat a baking sheet with olive oil, heat the oven to 400*, peel and cut potatoes into 1/2 inch pieces and coat with ingredients. Cook for 20-25 minutes, flipping half way through. Delish! Click here for a better reference:http://homeiswheretheholmansare.blogspot.com/2010/11/spicy-roasted-sweet-potatoes.html
I also made a version of the oh-so very popular PAZOOKI )deep dish cookie with ice cream on top) for dessert. It gave me a great excuse to use my sweet little ramekins that Jaimie gave me last year for Christmas.
You can find the recipe here: http://www.blueeyedbakers.com/home/2011/8/8/deep-dish-cookie-pies.html
*sidenote-- I didn't put as much butter as it calls for and I substituted the milk chocolate chips for white chocolate :)
I've found so much inspiration on Pinterest for new recipes to try. Tomorrow I am going to make crockpot Chicken Taco chili and put it over rice. Yummmm (hopefully ;))
Tuesday, January 10, 2012
WINNIE SLEPT 8.5 HOURS IN A ROW LAST NIGHT!!
That was after she took a 4 hour nap before that. And after I fed her, she went back to bed for another 3 hours! That girl really likes her sleep apparently.
She must be growing. :)
I am a happy and well-rested mama today! Bring it on, world!