Wednesday, December 23, 2009

christmas dates

this year troy and i took the kids on christmas dates! troy bought ali a beautiful little christmas dress and they went to cucina cucina and then out to barnes & noble where they looked at books together. unfortunately they had lousy service at cucina cucina, but it's pretty fun that that's where he took her on their first christmas date since that's where he took me for our first ever date.
caleb and i got all dressed up and we went out to red robin. caleb had the mac 'n' cheese and i had my favorite crispy chicken tender salad. we then split a milkshake! our server was great and kept calling it a date and treated us super well. then caleb had pretty much the whole restaurant watching as he conversed with "Red" the mascot. they talked about their differing shoe sizes (huge and little) and the color of their legs (yellow and normal) and the fact that they were both super ticklish!
it was such a nice and special evening and i'm already looking forward to next year!

some advent highlights

caleb insisting we buy a specific tree with colored lights. and asking every morning to turn on "his colors"
decorating the tree and sharing stories about ornaments
painting cookies
making caramels and sneaking to the neighbors to hand them out
christmas dates (more on that later)
taking the kids to babies R us and toys R us to shop for each other
caleb playing with his nativity scene

Saturday, November 28, 2009


following in the footsteps of kelly and jessi, here's a list of things for which i'm thankful!
grace and peace
the way troy looks at me even when i'm wearing sweats and haven't showered
caleb singing "I love you baby Jesus" while playing with his nativity
ali's smile
bath time for the kids
the look on ali's face when troy enters the room. I hope she gets that from me
conversations with caleb
being close to family even when they live in other states
friends that feel more and more like family
date night
Qdoba after church
the chance to spend every day with two of my favorite people
the chance to spend a lifetime with my love
chai tea
game nights
God's sovereignty

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

dreaming about shoes

the other night i had a dream that i was an auctioneer at a shoe auction. i think i've had shoes on my brain because i'm kind of in love with little ballet flats... they are the shoe i've been praying would be in fashion because they are just perfect for me! but of course, i still only have one pair, so i look at them every time i'm at the store and dream about christmas.
in this dream, though, the shoes were all pretty crazy (think crazy colorful plastic with mondo feathers and sequins.). and sometimes i wouldn't show the shoe before auctioning it off. i would just say, women's shoe, size 8, pink. and you would just get what you got. i think mostly people were happy, though, and i even snuck a couple of cute ones for myself!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

your girlfriend's ugly

about a month ago, my dad was teaching a class and asked this question, "what would you say to someone who said they loved Jesus, but not his church." some guy in the class answered, "i like you, but your girlfriend's ugly."
i've been thinking about that. we've had several single guy friends in our life. most of them are very happily married now. and we LOVE the women they found to spend the rest of their lives with. i wonder, though, how it would have been if we had not liked the women. how could we be friends with someone, say we love someone, and then dislike the person they chose? sure, we might not hit it off at first. and it would take some time to get to know her. but in the end, part of the very nature of the man is to be learned by knowing the woman he loves.
the Bible says that the church is the bride of Christ. it's messed up and can offend. but how can we say we love Christ if we do not love His church? it may be hard and take time and effort and patience, but in the end, part of the very nature of Jesus can be learned by knowing His church.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Warning, FMO

(for moms only)

So, Ali is a very infrequent pooper. But regular... every six days, like clockwork (well, except this time it was seven days). I am drinking pear juice like it's my job, but I guess this is just how she is. We've gotten to the place where I even have a special "pooping outfit" for her so that nothing else gets stained. Oh the things a parent does!
In some ways it's nice... I don't have to bring a diaper bag everywhere I go (unless it's been six days, then I bring two of everything).
Ok, why did I write this blog?? I guess I feel like this is something I want to remember about Ali at this stage... won't she live that?!

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Me: Caleb, I'm glad you're awake! How are you?
Caleb: I good. I turn two in august. I have dog party. I eat dog cake, chips.
Me: wow, that sounds like fun!
Caleb: it so fun.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Monday, November 2, 2009


Caleb saw me blogging and wanted to include one of his half-eaten chocolate brownie cliff bar. So, without further ado...

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This weekend, Caleb received a belated birthday gift of a viewmaster!! I totally remember having one and absolutely loving it. Anyway, Caleb loves it too but just calls it his present. As in, "mommy, find present, please"

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More words

Snuggle: started as "sungle" and has now become "suggle"
Refridgerator: used to be "fridge" but has now morphed into "refridger"

Saturday, October 31, 2009


I keep meaning to write some of the cute words Caleb says because I know I will otherwise forget. So here we go:
Music: this was caleb's first word. It started as "sic" and for some reason is now "meggers"
Guacamole: one of caleb's favorite foods, it started as "go-me" and is now "go-go-mol-y"
Chamomile: the tea bags we have are brown so Caleb sometimes calls it "cammo-brown-meal"

Friday, October 9, 2009

recipes by chef caleb

1. cinnamon (best if made in the bathtub)
  • one cup water
  • one cup "oil"
  • mix
2. ice cream
  • two special doggies
  • two duplos
  • one purple silk flower
  • mix using a water bottle
3. cranberry muffins
  • make ice cream (see recipe above)
  • add two stuffed giraffes and a toy elephant
  • mix again (still using water bottle)
  • bake
  • don't forget to blow on them or you might "burn mouth"

Thursday, October 8, 2009


my mom's coming for a visit soon, so i've been thinking a lot about her. i've got so many incredible stories of the things that she's taught me and just the way she raised the three of us kids. and i've tried to put my finger on it a number of times; what is it that made her such a great mom?? some of the answers i've come up with were
  • she knew how to be what we needed, when we needed it: mom, friend, teacher, mentor, etc.
  • she had a background in teaching so she was able to teach things very clearly and creatively.
  • she was in evangelism ministry, so she viewed life as a ministry already.
but you know what mom would say if she was asked what she did right? (and believe me, i've asked!) she would say she had no idea what she was doing, she just loved God. the secret to being a better mom is to love and serve and follow and grow in relationship with God. He created our kids so He knows what they need. and what does He say? Seek first His kingdom.
so when Mom comes, i think this time i'll do less asking her questions about parenting and more time asking her about Him.

bridesmaid dresses and church membership

this week troy and i were talking about church (one of our favorite topics) and our place in defending, protecting, supporting, etc. the church. i began to realize a correlation between church membership and my role as a maid of honor.
as a maid of honor (and really i need to do this for all friends, but i more realize this as someone who has signed a marriage certificate), i see my role as supporting the marriage. it is no longer that i support just the bride, but now i am supporting the couple together. so when there are questions or concerns, i can listen and advise, but only in a way that encourages the marriage. when things get tough, i can support, but only in a way that points toward oneness between the two people.
and recently, i've seen my place at a church in a similar way. as a member of the church, it is my job to support the whole church and the unity of the church, not just individual friends or families. i need to listen and advise, but in a way that encourages reconciliation. i can support, but only in a way that fosters unity.
i know it's not a perfect analogy, but it works for me!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009


here's a great way help out a special family and a wonderful cause. the Ladd family needs our help in bringing their beautiful girl home from Ethiopia.
the Bible says, "Religion that is pure and undefiled before God is this, to visit orphans and widows in their affliction..." (James 1:27 ESV)
Please visit their website and help them out... just don't win the prize i want ;)

Friday, October 2, 2009

smile that can light up a building

there's nothing better than seeing this every day!
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Thursday, October 1, 2009

to get to the other side...

before nap the other day, i asked caleb if i could kiss his cheek. he said no. i kept asking...

can i kiss your head?
can i kiss your nose?
can i kiss your feet?

finally, i gave up and asked, "well, what can i kiss?!" he replied, "NOTHING!" i laughed so hard and couldn't wait to tell troy the cute story.

so then the next day i said, "caleb, can i kiss your cheek?" to which he answerer, "NOTHING!"

apparently, the punch line is all that really matters :) he'll be one of those kids who comes up to people saying, "hey, i have a joke... TO GET TO THE OTHER SIDE... ha ha"

keep working on that comedic timing, kiddo!


a few days ago, i took caleb and ali to see the salmon run. if you've never seen it, it's one of those things that's pretty cool to learn about and way way cooler to get to see. we went last year, too, but caleb was not nearly as interested so it was really more about me and getting out somewhere. this year, though, he thought it was amazing!
it was funny getting to see the big ones up close. he looked at me and said, "fish cute??" in this questioning voice like he knew "cute" was not the word he was looking for. then he changed his mind and said, "fish weird??" again, not quite the right word. so i suggested, "ugly fish!" he looked at me and seconded, "SUPER ugly fish!"

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

all good things must come to an end

i was just standing in the hallway, holding alia and minding my own business when, all of a sudden, i hear caleb running and yelling, "TWO DOGGIES!" oh no. see, caleb has "special doggie", a little lovey that he hates to be without. but what he doesn't know... sorry, didn't know... was that there were actually two of them. that way we were safe to wash doggie and there would be no freaking out if one got left somewhere. as of today, however, he has two doggies. i think what happened was that #2 (as we call the hidden one) was with the clothes in the dryer that i then put on the bed when i needed to switch laundry. and then caleb went into our room and now life will never be the same.
his excitement was through the roof. here's part of what he said, "two doggies... same same... two tags... two doggie tags... two special doggies... caleb have two doggies... two doggies same... two doggies on head... two doggies sungle (snuggle)... two doggies sleep... two doggies!!" so now what? i can't take it away. oh well, it was good while it lasted!

Saturday, September 26, 2009

two funny stories

i just love all the funny things caleb says. and i need to get better and writing them down. so, here we go:
1. the other day we were talking about "owl", which is what caleb calls his grandpa al. we told him that grandpa's name was "alan" just like caleb's middle name. caleb alan, grandpa al. caleb looked at us a while (i didn't really think he understood) and then said, "same, same... caleb and grandpa caleb". almost buddy!
2. caleb loves those bunny snacks. you know, the ones that are like goldfish crackers only taste better and are (slightly) better for you. he loves calling them "honey bunny" and "yummy bunny" because they rhyme. so, the other day we were talking about all the words that rhymed with bunny (honey, funny, runny, sunny, etc). he decided to give it a try and came up with "dog bunny!" then he started laughing as though he knew it wasn't right, but liked it anyway.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009


i've often been a bit disappointed by how inflexible caleb is, at least in regards to sleeping and daily routines. he likes to be in his bed, with the lights off and no noise around. he likes to go to bed at his bedtime after having followed the usual routine of bath, pajamas, books, brushing teeth, reading the Bible, praying, and singing a song. now that he's older, he's ok with skipping a part of the routine as long as he's been warned ahead of time (for example, "caleb, tonight we're not going to take a bath, we're just going to go straight to brushing your teeth"). i was thinking that having another baby it was going to be so nice and different to have one more flexible than caleb (because, in my mind, the only direction she could go was more flexible). oy.
alia is anything but flexible! actually, during the day she's great... naps in the ergo, etc. but at night time, man oh man! she HAS to go to bed when she wants to go to bed, which is somewhere between 6:30 and 7:30pm. miss it and the whole complex is in trouble. last night, for example. we went to community group and she fell asleep right around 7:30. now, on a normal night, she would keep sleeping, i would dream-feed her at 10:30ish (a feeding while she's still asleep) and then she sleeps until about 4ish and then again until 7:30 or so. but not last night. we had to do the unthinkable last night... put her in her car seat (which, in case i haven't mentioned, she hates). so then we get home and spend the next 1.5 hours trying to get her back to sleep. oh my poor inflexible children... and their parents!

Sunday, September 20, 2009

run-on words

a run-on word is two words that are strung together as one word with one meaning. caleb has a lot of these. some examples:
feedyou: nursing... "mommy feedyou ali"
holdyou: pick up... "mommy holdyou caleb"
effway: this way... "please walk effway"
getchoo: get you... "bees no getchoo caleb"
mommycomy: come here mom... "mommycomy holdyou caleb please"

you get the idea :)

Wednesday, September 16, 2009


today ali got a special gift in the mail. robeez! and not just any ones, these ones!

and as soon as caleb saw them he took them over to her and said, "Ali have pretty shoes!" his wife will be so lucky!

button holes

uh-oh. caleb learned about button holes yesterday. why is that a problem, you ask? because now he likes them... a lot. so last night he did not want to wear a normal pajama shirt. no way! (which is something he's been saying a lot lately, by the way... we're trying to redirect him to saying "no thank you") fortunately i was able to find a shirt other than his long-sleeve polo shirt! and today he did not want to take the shirt off so most of the day, he kept pointing out that he had button holes on his shirt. i hope he moves on quickly from this because we're going to run out of button shirts soon!

Monday, September 14, 2009


recently, fear has entered caleb's life. and i don't know why. he's afraid of some things that i can sort of understand: the car wash, bees, etc. and other things that i don't understand: dogs, ducks, bumpy streets, etc. i can't blame the fears on bad experiences because (other than the car wash) he hasn't had any bad experiences. one of my friends suggested that this age is when so much of their imagination develops and so that is affecting his view of things. this could definitely be the case.
but no matter why this is happening, i'm just praying that God would give me wisdom to help caleb not be frozen by his fear. that i could teach him about faith and courage. and that when he runs to me in fear, i could point him to the One whose perfect loves drives away fear.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

can't take the psych major out of me

i was sitting here thinking back over my day and some of the conversations i've had. and all of a sudden, i was struck with the urge to do a psychological study. i was thinking about love languages and specifically how they manifest themselves in kids and how much of them are based on nature and how much is influenced by their environment. one of my friends told me that her oldest definitely has the love language of quality time. and i was thinking that was showing up as caleb's #1 also. that got me thinking about birth order and love languages. i'm wondering if oldest children have a greater likelihood of having quality time as their top love language. i wonder if this has to do with all the alone time they had with their parent(s) at the very beginning of their lives. i'm a firstborn, and my #1 love language is quality time (although i have a hard time having quality time unless i'm also getting some "quantity" time... like, i need to spend time with people in order to let them get close to me... but anyway...)
so, if you know your love language, i would love if you would leave a comment with what it is and also what your birth order is. now that i'm not in college, i'm not going to do a full-on study (obviously) but i'm just so curious...

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

what's that taste?

one of caleb's latest things is that things can taste "weird". like soggy cereal. or pure rice milk. so now we only give a little cereal at a time so it doesn't have time to get "wierd". and we mix rice milk with goat milk. oh the little things :)

Friday, August 21, 2009


caleb is going to be such a good husband someday (and, in the meantime, a great son and brother). today, he and his nana walked to starbucks where he asked to buy me a scone (he wanted a chocolate one but since they don't make those he settled on cranberry... good choice!). then, we he got home, he walked in the door saying "Hi Mommy!" when i came over to greet him, he said "Mommy, cute shirt." love him!!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

chocolate brownie

at our favorite zoo, there are four alpacas that we feed every time we go. actually, we just feed two of them because the other two are in a separate pen and one of them likes to spit so we avoid that area! anyway, the two we feed are named Biff and Charlie Brown. but caleb doesn't call the second one charlie brown, he calls him "chocolate brownie." he's so set on this, for some reason, that once when i said "sorry charlie" to him, he replied back with "sorry chocolate brownie!"

Friday, August 14, 2009

what i can do now

just 9 short days ago, i was pregnant. very pregnant. and it was rough. i think that, coupled with having a short labor, has made this early postpartum time really good. i feel great. here are a few things i can do now that i could not do 9 days ago:
  • pick something up off the ground
  • walk down the steps in less than 3 minutes (even while carrying an infant seat)
  • get in and out of bed all by myself
  • lay on my back
  • walk without gritting my teeth
  • dance with caleb
  • kiss alia's beautiful face

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

things i didn't need

it's funny now when i think back at how long it took me to pack my bags for the birth center. i spent so much time thinking about what to bring and pulling it all together. part of it was i wanted to have everything i needed (and had to figure out what to wear!) and part of it was that i lacked motivation to decide what that would be.
but here are some things i brought that i definitely did not need...
  • relaxing and inspiring music playlist on the ipod
  • labor journal full of verses, poems, song lyrics, etc.
  • swimsuit for troy (if he had tried to change, he probably would have missed her birth)
  • two different laboring outfits (i barely had time to get out of what i was wearing, let alone put anything else on)
  • computer to keep friends and family apprised of what was going on. i don't think this one even made it out of the car...

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

memorable quotes from during labor...

  • on the car trip to the birth center, spoken because of the switch from active to transitional labor: "OH NO! they (the contractions) get worse!"
  • pulling into the parking lot of the birth center, toward the end of transitional labor: "Troy, if we ever win the lottery, can we repave this?!". he promised.
  • while pushing baby Alia out: "Alia, stop doing this to me!"
on a side note, one of the things for which i've been most grateful regarding this labor and delivery experience is how connected i felt to my body and the whole experience. i love that i remember what others were doing/saying and what i was doing/saying. there's something really sweet about it, and i didn't even know it was missing last time.

Monday, August 10, 2009

She's here!

unlike last time when i was induced, epidural-ed, monitored, and spend hours and hours pushing, this labor was super quick!! here's how i remember the day...
11am-12:15pm visit cougar mountain zoo and do my best to waddle around seeing all the animals. no contractions.
12:15pm-2:15pm eat lunch, put caleb down for a nap, welcome friends coming for a visit, still no contractions.
2:15pm-3:00pm feeling like i need to a)use the bathroom, b)should finish packing my bags, and c)don't want to be around people. have 2 mild contractions.
3:00pm-9:15pm say goodbye to friends, call family to let them know something is starting, eat dinner, get caleb to bed, win two games of ticket to ride. mild contractions every 15-20 minutes but i'm not even timing them.
9:15pm-9:30pm finish packing, tell troy to start timing contractions.
9:30pm-9:40pm have three contractions, each one getting harder and harder. call the midwife, start heading out the door.
10:15pm-10:55pm drive to the birth center. worst 40 minutes of my life. contractions getting worse and worse, every 2 minutes or so.
10:55pm-11:13pm arrive at the birth center and have a baby!! hardest and best 18 minutes of my life!

more fun stories to come!

Friday, July 31, 2009

don't ask me how i'm doing

when i'm asked how these last couple of weeks of pregnancy are going, i typically say something like "i've been better" or "i'm hangin' in there". i guess both of them are true, but i'm mostly just saying them to avoid an emotional melt down in public.
i'm in so much pain, i can't even begin to explain it. i know that the last few weeks of any pregnancy are full of discomfort and pain, but i'm pretty sure this is outside the range of normal. some women (me included during my last pregnancy) try walking to stimulate labor. i can't even get in and out of bed without help. some go through a wonderful nesting period in preparation for their little one. i can't even make it from one room to another in our little condo without stopping for support. it's getting worse and worse. yesterday, i couldn't even leave my house because a) i couldn't make it down three flights of stairs and b) i can't move my legs well enough to drive.
i think i've been trying to just play it off as pregnancy pain and trying to be strong. but today i started doing a bit of research and i'm starting to think i may have a broken or bruised coccyx. that would explain a lot... the horrible pain, the difficulty moving, the intense swelling, etc. i might be wrong, but i just have to find some reason (other than 9 months of pregnancy) for this pain i'm feeling, or i'm not sure how i'll ever work up the nerve to do this again!
thank you to all the people who have stepped up to help me out with caleb or around the house. thank you for all of you who are praying for me and for Alia to come soon. and please, don't ask me how i'm doing, just know that answer is "horribly" and i'm not sure when it will change.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

opposites attract

at least for caleb they do. he is really interested in opposites right now. his first introduction to opposites was big and little. we started talking about it by making "great big giant" balls of playdough and "little tiny baby" balls of playdough. and then we had "great big giant" dog stuffed animals and "little tiny baby" dog stuffed animals. for a while, he wouldn't even say "big", he would just make some growling, "great big giant" sound. now's he's starting to branch out to explore other opposites...
tight and loose: we talk about this when getting into his car seat. i'll pull the seat belt tight and then way loose. back and forth. it was fun and he learned tight and loose all right... but now every time he gets into his seat, he complains that it is "tight". i'm creating a monster!
loud and quiet: i read in a book (or maybe i saw it on tv) that the best way to teach a dog to be quiet is to teach them the command "speak". then they just start barking when told to bark. anyway, caleb learned loud and quiet in a similar way... playing the drums (aka hitting a pillow with lincoln logs). he was banging too loudly so we taught him how to play loud and quiet. it's cute now to watch him see just how quiet he can be. of course, he still prefers loud.
over and under: i think caleb's gram taught him this one by helping him step over a blanket. for a while he then wanted to put everything on the ground and step over it. and under is an easy one... what little boy doesn't drive cars under tunnels made of blocks?
off and on: actually, maybe this was caleb's first opposite. off was one of his first words. we must have spent hours with him laying on his changing table and asking for the light switch "ott" and "on".
there are probably more, but that's all i have for right now...

mommy's belly

caleb loves talking about my big baby belly. recently he's been interested in measuring it with his little elephant tape measure (just like the one my midwives use!). one day he measured the table and it was "3...4". then he measured my belly, "5...6". so apparently my tummy is bigger than a coffee table. i mean, i knew i was big, but furniture big?! then later, when i asked him how big mommy's belly is, he replied, "13!!", which is the biggest number he knows :) that's like a kindergartner saying "1 million" or a smart alec kid saying "infinity plus 1".
caleb's also been fascinated recently by my belly button. at first, he was a little unsure why it looked so different from what he thought a belly button should look like. so i explained that ali makes my belly and belly button look different, a little funny. so now he calls my belly button an "ali button".

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

caleb and ali

i know that caleb doesn't really get that the "baby ali" he loves so much now will be an actual crying, eating, taking time from mommy, baby. but it's still cute to watch him develop a relationship with her.
  • he love to sing about her in "He's got the whole world in His hands."
  • he wants to put lotion on her every day. while he rubs lotion on my tummy, he makes her talk to him. she often says "thank you caleb", "more lotion please", or "nice gentle hands". it's freakin' adorable.
  • he talks about reading her the "oops book" (blue hat, green hat).
  • today at bella materna, he talked about buying clothes to help "mommy feed ali".
  • every time we get in the car, he gets re-excited about "caleb sit ali car seat" or "ali seat belt, caleb seat belt, yeah" since her car seat was just installed a few days ago.

i look forward to watching this special relationship between them develop more and more.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

some highlights of my weekend

  • friday night, i thought troy was going to have to work... and he didn't! we got to play games instead. and i won 2 out of 3, so life was good!
  • saturday morning, friends babysat caleb so troy and i could spend a few hours on the beach, talking about the next 6 months. we talked about what we need from each other, what we need to purchase, who we will go and visit, how we will spend our time during the week, etc. a wonderful time of dreaming together about our new family of four.
  • between saturday and sunday nap times, troy and i checked off 4 things from our "to do before Alia comes" list.
  • randomly, caleb has been saying "Yo Baby". no idea why or what he thinks it means, but i got it on video. he's also been trying out the concept of "me, too". again, he's not really sure when it should be said, but it's sure cute to hear when he decides to pull it out.
  • while troy was pulling out some things for lunch today, i decided to lay down. caleb told me i should lay down in my bed and he even brought me his two most special blankets to cover me up. and when it was time to get up, he offered me his hand. what a sweet heart he has... and he's obviously watching how troy takes care of me.

my two companions

discomfort and exhaustion are my two constant companions right now. and they feed off of each other. i can sleep only if i'm too exhausted to pay attention to the discomfort. so, if i take a nap to help with the exhaustion, discomfort wins at night. but if i don't take a nap, the discomfort is so much harder to bear during the day.
only three more weeks, give or take!

Sunday, July 12, 2009

maternity dresses

hate. them. on. me.
there are lots of super-cute maternity dresses and i often admire how lovely women look when wearing them. and then i try one on. yuck.
i think the problem is how i carry babies. i actually like how i carry them... straight out in front. pretty much i don't get bigger anywhere other than my belly. this causes some other issues such as major stretch marks and a hard time getting rid of said baby belly. but it's the way my body works, and i like it. in fact, i actually think i look kind of cute in normal maternity clothes (except for the fact that now most of them aren't long enough to cover my belly). but not dresses. my theory is that since i stick out so far in front, dresses just hang funny and make me look and feel like a big boat.
the reason this is all coming up right now is that i have a wedding to go to of a dear friend from high school. it's in two weeks, so i'll be at 38 weeks pregnant. i've been asking around for a cute dress to borrow and have received many options. yesterday, i even got to see a picture of one i could borrow and it looked perfect. so i borrowed it today and tried it on. it looked so good on the gal in the picture! but not on me. sigh. maybe i should just be thankful that i even have some options for clothes that can fit rather than complaining about how they look. but it's a wedding, is it too much to ask to look cute??

Monday, June 29, 2009

two random things about me

when i'm pregnant, i want to buy pickles. not because i actually crave them, but because i think that's what pregnant people are supposed to crave. so every time i walk by the pickles in the grocery store, i pick them up. i don't often actually buy them, but i think about it. every time.
i don't like the nickname "babe" for me. i know a lot of husbands call their wives "babe" and vice-versa, but i just can't. i don't think there's anything wrong with it... in fact, i think it's cute when i hear others say it. but the couple of times troy's tried it or i've tried it with troy, it just doesn't work. good thing there's other cute names to call each other!

Saturday, June 27, 2009

concept of numbers

i think caleb's starting to get the idea of numbers meaning amount. he's been counting for a while... he's pretty good up to 10... but this week he started showing a deeper level of understanding. in the past, when he hasn't wanted to be done with something fun, he's asked for "one minute" or "one time" (one more time). often we grant this request. but this week, he's gotten smart. now he'll ask for "three minute" or "two time". time to start the negotiations :)

Thursday, June 25, 2009

how i'm feeling

lots of people have been asking me how i'm feeling, being that i'm 34 weeks pregnant and waddling around i could pop any day now. i'll be honest, this is rough on me. a lot more rough than my pregnancy with caleb. that's probably due to not getting back into as good of shape between pregnancies, having to chase after a 22 month old, and not getting to just lay around the house all day letting my body and joints relax. i feel a lot of joint and pelvic pain mainly, with the occasional kick to the round ligament. and i even had my first braxton hicks contraction (never did with caleb)... an event that i've been told is likely just the beginning. oh, and did i mention i'm not sleeping well because apparently alia has her days/nights switched. so yeah, i'm quite uncomfortable. the good news, though, is that i'm learning to take care of myself a bit better and not push it. also, i'm getting more and more ready to meet this precious little girl of mine!

progression of the alphabet

i wanted to get this recorded because i know i'll forget as time goes along...
1. A...B...C...
2. A...B...C...D...
3. A...B...C...D...P...Q...X...Y...Z
4. A...B...C...D...O...O...O...P...Qs...Rs...W(pronounced "double")...X...Y...Z

more to come, i'm sure

what's in a name

alia's name means "Yaweh is God" or "my God is Yahweh". and just knowing that was enough for us to love the name. but then we found out even more! according to my uncle (who's jewish) the "aliyah" or "alia" is a person who is given the honor of reciting a blessing over the torah or reading the torah. our prayer for alia is that she would know that she's been given the honor of always being able to read the Bible. and that she would be known as one who takes every opportunity to read the Word.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

caleb's sentences

in the last week or so, caleb has started talking in two-word sentences. it just clicked all of a sudden. no more "ball"... "purple". now it's "purple ball" and so on. his favorite is to add "chocoo" (chocolate) in front of anything. smart kid... chocolate does make everything better :) so i hear a lot of "chocoo cookie", "chocoo bar", and "chocoo milk".
he's even tested out a few three-world sentences. so far i've heard "more chocoo cookie", "izzy eat bana" (a friend's dog eats bananas... for real), and "mommy color purple" when caleb wanted me to use the purple crayon instead of the brown one i was currently holding. it's pretty much adorable and fun for me to learn more about how his little brain is learning and processing information. it's cute when his mouth can't quite keep up with his mind.

advice from my midwives

i was talking to my midwife at one of my last appointments and she was asking how i felt about having a second baby. i'm excited, definitely, and scared, mostly. i'm excited to have two kids but not to have another baby. you know that silly little thing on facebook where you can pick your top five "things" or whatever? i saw one that was "five things you dislike that everyone else seems to love". if i had to pick mine, shia labeouf would be on the list... and so would babies. i just like them. oh, i love my babies and the babies of those whom i love, but i'm more of a toddler/school age person myself. i like communication and crying for specific reasons (or better yet, no crying!).
anyway, my midwife had a couple of great things to say to me. first, she commented on my close, sweet relationship with caleb (points to her!). and she told me that while i was worried about how having another baby would affect him, it would be harder on me. i think she's right... he'll figure out how to deal with it and bounce back quickly. plus, i think he'll be a really great big brother. and i'm excited for him to learn that the world doesn't revolve around him :) but it will be hard on me to watch him learn. so i'm trying to think about that once in a while, sort of preparing myself and sort of reassuring myself.
the second thing my midwife had to say was about love for a second baby. she said that, for her, she definitely had that "mother tiger" love for her new baby: fierce and protective. but the deep, knowing love took a while to develop. at first, she felt like she didn't love her second as much but then she realized it was just that she didn't have the memories and time with her that she'd had with the first. i think it might be the same for me. i love alia already and i know the second i lay eyes i her, there's nothing in the world i won't do for her. but the love that i feel for caleb is different than that... it's come from a history together, from studying one another and spending every day together. and even though i won't have that love for alia right away, it makes me excited to start working on it. to start learning about this precious girl who i get to know and care for and love.
i hope i remember these things when the time comes... when i'm feeling down and confused and uncertain. i hope i remember how hopeful and excited i'm feeling right this minute. because i think it will give me the extra boost i need to make it through another day.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

one week...

and then i'll have a verdict on the whole iron situation. next wednesday i'll get my blood drawn and then, most likely, i'll get a call back the next day with the results. i guess i don't even really know all the options. i know that if the levels hold steady then i'm ok... maybe they'll need to check a few more times throughout the pregnancy. but if i drop (with taking all the supplements and doing all the right stuff), then i guess i'll be looking for an OB again. oy. i'll let you know.

limits of imagination

caleb has a great imagination. he loves to have his cars drive over to each other and talk about what they like on their toast (jelly, butter, honey, etc) or what kind of cereal they want for breakfast. he tries to put his diapers on stuffed animals and wants to clean their ears with q-tips. cooking is a favorite thing so any spatula all of a sudden whips up some eggs and anything even remotely cup-like needs to be sipped and shared. most recently, caleb has become infatuated with guitars and playing "king Jesus is all" and "pharaoh, pharaoh". so now sticks and forks and anything long and thin becomes a guitar to strum. it's all super cute.
have you ever read "Go Dog, Go"? we don't have the full version, just the kid's board book and caleb loves it (calls "dogo"). he especially loves the pages with "stop dogs stop" and "go dogs go". but here's the thing. he doesn't actually realize there are dogs in the book except on the page where all the dogs are more realistically colored. that page he freaks out because of all the dogs. and the rest, he's totally oblivious. how can a little baby fork be a guitar but a dog, if colored green, must be some sort of silly monster? what a fun mind to get to know!

Friday, May 1, 2009

gifts and abilities

i've been thinking a lot recently about my spiritual gifts as well as abilities and talents i've developed or been given. and i've come to one major conclusion.
i don't use them well.
actually, i do have the ability to read very quickly, and i do use that to read a lot of books about raising children, being a wife, as well as fun best-sellers so that i'm up on the latest trends. but other than that...
one thing i've really been noticing recently is this ability i have to understand what a person is saying. now i know that's sort of the point of communication, but actually a lot of people aren't that good at it. for me, i can pretty well understand people who speak with different accents as well as extracting the meaning out of what a person is saying who maybe doesn't always put it clearly. i've been wondering recently, what do i do with that? right now, it helps me understand my son and that's enough for me. but i wonder how else i might use it. maybe some sort of mediating or something. i hope someday i find something or start doing something and, all of a sudden, am struck with the understanding that THIS is why i've always been good at understanding.
the other thing i don't use is a spiritual gift of counseling. the reason is that i'm scared to say hard things to people. often i'll think of things that someone needs to hear/work on but unless it's a nice thing, im too afraid of hurting someone's feelings or not being liked. it's totally wrong of me and i know it. so it's something i'm trying to work on, but still opportunities go by...

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

but do i believe it?

when i was in kentucky at the beginning of this month, i threw a baby shower for my sister and my new little niece. as part of it, i did a little devotional about parenting. can i tell you just how intimidating that was? here i was with moms at all ages and stages of parenting... including my own mom from whom i learned everything i could possibly think of saying. i talked about how much i don't know and how i didn't feel in any position to be sharing. but i did share the two things i do know for sure about parenting. here's one:
I will make a lot of mistakes. I won’t always listen or respond correctly. I won’t always be consistent or a good example. I won’t always be patient or kind. But that doesn’t mean I’m a failure. Isaiah 40:11 says, “He tends His flock like a shepherd: He gathers the lambs in His arms and carries them close to His heart; He gently leads those that have young.” I love the picture that God is gentle toward those with children. He understands how difficult children can be. And He knows that often, we’re hard enough on our selves. Also, I love that the verse talks about Him holding the lambs close to His heart. Our children are first and foremost His children. And He’s entrusted them to us. While that’s sobering, it’s also very encouraging because that means that I am the right mom for my kids. And it is God who is ultimately providing for and protecting them.
do i believe that? i know i believe the part about making mistakes, all i have to do is look at any given day. but the part about not believe a failure? and being the right mom for my kids? i think i'm learning it. but it's a lot easier to remember after a fun morning and long nap than it is after a grumpy morning full of discipline. i want to know the truth and trust God in my parenting, not just my overall life.

dressing and undressing

we seem to be entering a sort of phase for caleb. he likes to decide what to wear (occasionally, not every day) and when not to wear anything anymore. yesterday, we asked him to go get his shoes so we could go to community group. he decided he wanted to wear unmatching ones. he even seemed to enjoy the slightly lopsided walk this forced him to adopt. and this morning he successfully took off his pants all by himself. he then begged me to help him take off his shirt. and he would have taken off his diaper, too, but the cloth ones we use are still a bit above him (thankfully). i'll be interested to see where these new interests take us... possibly to some funny blog stories!

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

crazy alia

seriously, she's crazy. i can already see her moving... not just feel her, but see her. she's already found both my lungs and my bladder. i swear caleb took a lot longer than this. i hope she gets all her crazy wiggling and squirming out now while she's still little!
on another note, though, i'm getting really excited to meet her. i'm scared, too, but the excitement is starting to overwhelm my fears. i wonder what she'll look like, if she'll have dimples and curly hair, what color her eyes will be, and if she'll have my feet or troy's (we're praying for troy's). i wonder if i can force purple as her favorite color or if i'll have to settle for pink. i wonder what her first word will be and what animals she'll like. i wonder how she'll be like troy, like me, and like caleb. i can't wait to meet the little miss!


caleb loves to dip. everything. sometimes this works well... he likes fish sticks in ranch dressing, chicken nuggets in bbq sauce, chips in salsa, pita in hummus, etc. other times, not so much... anything in applesauce, anything in yogurt, fruit in anything. it's so cute! he gets so excited when i pull out a little ramekin for him... his own little dipping sauce. and heaven forbid he eat even one bite without dipping!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009


my mom was anemic when she was pregnant so i knew it was a very good possibility that it would be the same for me. sure enough, in my first pregnancy, after my 28-week blood draw, i got a call. "your iron is low." and not just a little low, either. it was enough that they told me to go right to a pharmacy, get some iron tablets, and start taking a double dose that very day. i figured it would be similar this time around. what i didn't know, though, was how much it could impact me.
i had my first blood draw at about 16 weeks. already low (the level was 33.3 if that means anything to anyone). so, i ate a LOT of spinach (spinach salad, spinach pasta, spinach and egg salad, spinach with humus, etc), drank tea made out of rose hips (actually quite good), and ate a lot of dried fruit. so i was hopeful that at my 20 week appointment, the level would have at least held steady. no such luck (dropped to 30.something). it's apparently not a good thing that it dropped so much in such a short time. and that the diet did absolutely no good. so, i bought an herbal supplement and i'm getting an over-the-counter supplement, too. and while i'm not thrilled about having to take all of that, it's not a big deal... except...
here's the bad news. if my iron levels don't "iron" out (ha ha) i can't have an out-of-hospital birth. and i really like my midwives and the birth center and i don't want to have to switch. so here's praying these supplements do their thing!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

what alia sounds like

i had a midwife appointment yesterday and caleb came with me (what i wouldn't give for family nearby to watch him or come with me to the appointment... sigh). he was actually really great and was understanding of when he couldn't come up onto the bed (blood draw) and when he could (listening to the heartbeat). he really liked hearing alia. in fact, he kept talking about it the whole trip home. and when we picked troy up from work, caleb was ready to tell daddy just what alia sounded like "hwoo hwoo hwoo".

listening to my son

yesterday, caleb woke up crying from his nap... which is fairly unusual for him. as i was holding and rocking him, he had a hard time settling down, so i asked him if something hurt. "yeah" was his response. next i asked him to tell me what hurt. "head", "ear" he said, while pulling on his right ear. so today i decided to honor his communication and take him to the pediatrician. sure enough, an ear infection (thankfully only his second ever) in his right ear. poor little man! i'm so thankful for his ability to understand and communicate and am glad i actually listened so he didn't have to suffer any longer. bring on the cherry antibiotics!

Saturday, March 21, 2009

how can you say no to that??

recently, caleb has been obsessed with his children's bible. we've always read it to him right before bed, but lately that hasn't been enough. usually we're pretty set on only sleeping with doggy at night, but how do you say no to sleeping with his bible? especially when all he wants is for it to be in the crib with him. last night, i wasn't home so troy put caleb to bed. apparently, he went down just fine but then started crying a minute or so later. and he wasn't crying for mommy or daddy, no, he was crying for his bible. so, like any good christian dad, troy went in there, put the bible in the crib, and about 12 hours later, caleb woke up. what a way to sleep!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

my how they grow!

caleb and i have really enjoyed our PEPS group. it's a great way for me to connect with other moms who have kids the same age as caleb. and now it's fun because many have started working on "round two" :) anyway, one of the kids caleb enjoys the most is Kian...he can even say his name (sort of). this was caleb's first friend and now look at them!

play dough

thanks to a great recipe from elizabeth, i made play dough this week for the first time. it's nice and soft and smells like cinnamon! at first, caleb wasn't too sure of what he thought. he wanted me to make a fish, a 'Y', an 'O', and a heart but beyond that, he was content to just stab it with a fork and make sure he didn't touch it. but i was finally able to coax him out of his comfort zone with a very fun play dough game. here's how it works...
first, you make (or have your mommy make) a ball of play dough... smaller usually works best when you're just learning the game.
next, you take your hand and smash it onto the ball. the nice thing about a small ball is that you don't even have to press very hard... which is important if you're a bit hesitant about touching said play dough.
finally, remove your hand and see the amazing results. it's FLAT! and sometimes, if you're really lucky (or have recently eaten something with jelly), the play dough might even stick to your hand!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

pink lemonade please

the other day, i was totally craving some pink lemonade. and i had to go to the store anyway so i figured i'd pick some up. no such luck. i somehow chose a store that didn't have pink lemonade. instead, i ended up with 1 bottle of sweetened sparkling water flavored with pink grapefruit, 1 bottle of sparkling regular lemonade, and 1 bottle of regular grapefruit juice. which one do you think hit the spot? which one satisfied my craving? definitely NOT the first one. it was actually kind of gross. the second was good and i did drink the whole thing that night. but it was actually the regular grapefruit juice that filled my need. and the best part is that now i get to have it every morning for breakfast!

look what's on caleb's wall

a wonderful gift from troy's mom and grampa. she drew and painted the pictures, he made the frames (which match caleb's crib perfectly!)

it's a GIRL

wow. i'm surprised... even more than i thought i would be. but excited, too, about a whole new world of parenting and purple! we've decided to name her Alia Marie. the first name means "The LORD is my God" and the middle name has been passed down to daughters since my Gammy (grandma). i love the reminder in the first name that it's the LORD who should be God and i pray that Alia will come to know Him early and with a single-hearted devotion. and i'm so looking forward to her knowing and learning about the women who have had her middle name.

now that i know it's a girl, i've developed my own theory about how to tell if i'm having a boy or a girl.
craving citrus: both
craving pringles and other chips: boy
craving any and all sweet things, especially chocolate: girl
craving italian: boy
craving hambers: girl
throwing up occasionally: boy
so nauseous i wish i could throw up: girl
sick in the morning: boy
sick in the morning and evening with occasional afternoons: girl

so now i'll never wonder again :)

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

tomorrow's the big day

the day we find out if the old wives tales (which said i have a 60% chance of having a girl) are right or not. a boy would be more practical (as in all the right clothes in all the right sizes, decorating the shared room, etc.) and i've always pictured myself have at least a couple of boys before any girls. but i sure would love a girl someday... and i'm even finding a few names i like... so maybe now's the time. i am leaning toward boy, but maybe just because that's what i'm used to. i don't know... i won't be shocked either way. just a wonderful surprise!
as far as names go, well, we're still working on it. we had a boy name. it was one i loved loved loved. but then i found out it is in the top 5 most popular boy names. and i just don't want him to have the same name as everyone else. so, while we may still choose it, we're entertaining other options. the nice thing is that we have LOTS of boy names we like and can imagine as a part of our family. for girls, more difficult. we don't really have a name we love right now. some we like, but none that we're sure of. and it's been hard finding one that meets all our criteria. i just really want to be able to start calling him/her by name. and for others to do the same. so hopefully soon!
i'm actually really excited about going for the ultrasound tomorrow. except that our babysitter had something come up so caleb will be joining us... making for an interesting time for troy :) i just love the place where my midwives are sending me. there are stars (little twinkle lights) on the ceiling. and i get my own monitor so i don't have to crane my neck to see what the tech is seeing. and the techs are awesome and send you home with LOTS of pictures. if i can get my hands on a scanner, i'll post a couple up soon.

caleb's newest word


as in "car"... "vroom"... "LOUD"
"spoon"... "bang"... "LOUD"

Thursday, March 12, 2009

like mother, like son

guess what caleb slept with today for his nap? his toothbrush. i just couldn't pry it away, he so desperately wanted to snuggle it!
and for those of you who don't know why this is an indication of his being like me... suffice it to say that, while i have never slept with my toothbrush, i have been rather obsessed with the use of it.


caleb is starting (emphasis on starting) to learn what colors are. actually, i think he gets the concept, just not the wide variety of options. so far everything is either purple or yellow. he's really good at purple (although he does call blue things purple, too) and everything else is yellow. yesterday at the store, caleb was running back and forth along the refrigerated section of juices, pointing to all the cartons that had purple lids. i think he pretty much made the day of several older ladies shopping nearby.
sometimes, caleb even gets the color brown... well, only in one case. if he's holding both his purple frog stuffed animal and his brown doggy, i ask him "what color is your frog" and he says "purple". then i ask, "what color is your doggy" and he says "brown". but if i ask him at other times what color his doggy is, he'll either say "yellow" or "color" :) it's still a work in progress!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

welcome annelie!

last night, my sister had her baby! it was a long and exhausting labor that started sunday evening and didn't end until late tuesday night. although everything was progressing as is usual, it was simply taking twice the amount of time as usual... or more. hanell was so strong and so brave and did a great job, despite the fact that she didn't have any sleep or much food. i was getting regular updates from my dad, who was in the waiting room.

my favorite part was when dad called me to say annelie had been born. he was standing outside the delivery room with his ear pressed to the door. he heard the midwife saying "the head is coming" and the wonderful "one more push". he heard the announcement of "IT'S A GIRL" (which is when he called me) and the first, very loud, cry. it wasn't until later that he could call back to give me size details (8lbs, 2oz, and 22.5in) and the official name (annelie grace).

and, while i was talking to dad, hearing the good news, i felt my own new little baby move for the first time. soon it will be my turn!

Monday, March 2, 2009

expanding vocabulary

i can't believe it! i was just looking back at some old posts and saw the one called "words" from february 1st. i mentioned my list of caleb's words being somewhere around 35 or so. i'm still working on the list and now, a month later, my list is at over 70. no wonder it feels like his communication has been exploding recently.
some new favorite words: lid, walk, paper, Elmo, and pants.

classifying a zebra

caleb has this awesome animal magnet puzzle that he loves. he especially has loved figuring out that all the pieces can stick to the refrigerator and don't have to just stay in the puzzle. one day all the pieces were on the fridge and we were playing a "find that animal" game. we had done all the easy ones (elephant, giraffe, fish, dog, etc) so had moved on to zebra. first, he pointed to the cow... nope. then, the tiger... again, no. finally, he found the zebra. it took me a bit to figure out what he had done. first, he found the right colors (black and white, for those of you who never had a complete animal education). then, he found an animal with stripes. finally, he put them together to find the right animal. what a problem solver!


it's official. caleb is weaned. i haven't nursed him in 1 month and he hasn't asked to be nursed in 1 week. i really wanted to be done in plenty of time so that it wouldn't be hard for caleb to see the new baby nursing. i'm hopeful that this next 5 months or so will give him time to forget... or at least move on.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

what do you want to sleep with today?

i ask this question every single day right before nap time. at night, caleb just sleeps with his doggy. but for his nap, he gets to pick 1-2 toys/books to sleep with as well. sometimes they are stuffed animals, sometimes books, sometimes kitchen utensils, etc. i can usually guess what it will be based on what he's involved in playing with right before nap begins. because of this, during lunch i try to hide two specific toys. first, is "music doggy"... a stuffed dog who plays music when you pull his tail. i've made the mistake of allowing him to sleep with that once. after about 1/2 hour of listening to the song over and over, i finally had to take it away so he could sleep. the other toy i hide is his duck. it's just too big, and wooden, to sleep with. so today it was two winnie the pooh books. yesterday it was two alphabet books. the day before, an elephant stuffed animal. most days it's different, and i always know he's really tired when he grabs a toy or two, his doggy, and comes to me asking to dance to personal penguin!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009


that's what caleb calls his goldfish... and since i promised a post about that little guy, here it is. so, we received this fish as a party favor from a super fun 1-year b-day celebration. we thought it would be no big deal, just toss the fish in a vase, give it some food, and see what happened. well, what happened was that caleb fell in love with this fish. it's not got some gourmet fish food, a nice big fish bowl, and an adoring fan. this fish has already more than doubled in size... partly due to the fact that caleb hates to sit down to a meal unless Woosh gets to eat, too. and if it's nap time, caleb will not relax on my shoulder or be ready to go to his crib until he's said goodnight to the fish. it's really cute... but who knew i'd be starting to think about qualified pet sitters at this time in life!

Sunday, February 1, 2009

caleb's first joke

i think caleb made his first joke on friday. see, we have a fish (more on him later). and caleb loves this fish. during every meal, he likes to say "hi" to the fish. on friday, though, he said, "hi turtle". i laughed and reminded him that it was a fish. but he kept saying it and getting a huge grin on his face and a funny little look in his eye. silly boy, he was teasing me!


caleb is talking a ton. realistically, he's the only baby i REALLY know, so it doesn't seem all that unusual to me. although, i was prepared for a boy to take a while to talk, i guess i just didn't have to wait all that long. a lot of what he says, probably only troy and i would understand. but more recently, i've had people from the nursery or at stores comment on his verbal abilities and ask me how old he is.
i've started to compile a list of all the words he knows. some of them sound a bit similar to innocent bystanders, but they are best understood in context. so far, my list is at 35, and i'm sure there are some that i'm forgetting. some of his favorites are: mama, daddy, please (cuz it gets him so much good stuff), more, music, doggy, hi, sit, up, no, yeah, all done, all gone, fish, and cracker... just to name a few.
it's made me think about the whole nature vs. nurture debate. i tend to attribute a lot of it to nature. i know i was quite the talker quite early and he seems to be a really "emotionally intelligent" (as one friend put it) boy. he just "gets" communication. he likes to listen to others and does his best to participate in whatever they are doing. on the other hand, though, i had a friend over last week who commented on how much i talk to caleb and how many words i give him throughout the course of a couple of minutes. maybe it's the teacher coming out in me, but that's just how i am around him. also, i know i try really hard to pay attention to what he's saying and reward his efforts. i assume this builds up his confidence to keep trying. it also helps that, so far, he's not showing any perfectionist tendencies when it comes to talking.
all that to say, it's probably a lot of both. and i'll be interested to meet our new little one and see how he/she develops verbally. maybe it will answer some questions. maybe it will just raise some news ones. we'll see...

Thursday, January 29, 2009

how i told troy we would have "two under two" (barely)...

things that make me sick (during this pregnancy)

not eating, eating too much, waiting too long to eat, the smell of eggs, the smell of hot dogs, thinking about the smell of eggs or hot dogs, chewy bagels, coughing, dancing, etc. it's been a rough first trimester, that's for sure!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

i'm back...

partly i was busy, what with christmas and all. partly, i just didn't know where to start with all the super-fun stories of caleb at this age (16 months is my new favorite). mostly, though, i'm pregnant! so i've been spending down time resting and trying not to get sick and avoiding telling the whole world that we're having another baby. but i'm starting to feel better now and we just had our first appointment and got to hear the little one's amazing heart beating away like crazy. so i think i'll be back to semi-regular blogging now... and boy do i have stories to share!