Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Cooper's First Photo Shoot

It dawned on me today that I haven't had Cooper's pictures taken yet - well, except the ones from the hospital. Since the older ones are still "on vacation" at Nana and Papa's house, I thought I might take advantage and go get the 4 1/2 month ones done. You know ... the ones you take when you've forgotten the 3 month ones.

I think it was a pretty successful trip. The immediate gratification side of me is also really happy to have them in 15 minutes. Now if I could just get them framed and hung.....

Monday, December 29, 2008

Forever a Family Day!!!

Well, the moment we've been waiting for has arrived. Kevin, Sarah, and Hannah are forever a family. You've gotta see her. Right now. Go get a tissue and a diet coke and set aside a little bit of time to read and reread. Click here.

Isn't that just what you needed today?

Prayers for a continued wonderful "getting to know you" time in Taiwan. Then hurry home guys so we can love on her too!

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Ode to Troy Gardner - This One's for You!

To find a great guy, you must know where to look
I hear that this one has a page on Facebook.

Now ladies, I'm sorry to report that he's taken
My friend is the one to whom he brings home his bacon.

But Troy ... so handsome, so funny, so smart
They're lucky to have him - retail genius - Walmart.

Customer service driven - both at home and at work
Having a this guy as a friend is a joy and a perk.

Our TV wasn't working - is just wasn't right
He took care of our problem - the very same night!

Compared to some guys, he's a prince among men
He's constantly in contact with lucky wife Jen.

This summer while we ladies sat by the pool
He sometimes stopped by to "help us look cool."

He offered - no kidding, no joshing, no jokes
to run to McDonald's for large Diet Cokes.

He knows that we love them, Jen, Martha and I -
so he brought us each one - that considerate guy!

His kids? They both love him - to them he's no zero
With the Wii and home theater - he's Blake's guitar hero.

I could go on and on.. and post 'till I'm blue
Troy Gardner - we love ya - it's all ABOUT YOU!

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas 2008

The Christmas season can get crazy with all the preparations, shopping, and spending. This year was no exception. With a new baby and all that goes with that, things were a little more harried this year. However, as it always does ... the Christmas eve church service put my heart and mind in the right place and reminded me again of the reason for the season.

I am thankful for all our blessings ... faith, family, and friends. How perfect to be surrounded by all three this holiday season. Happy Birthday Jesus!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

2nd Annual Gingerbread Party

Our neighbors are near and dear to our hearts for many reasons. One family is particularly so. The mom is one I aspire to be like and the kids, oops - teenagers, are really great. They host an annual gingerbread house decorating party and have been gracious enough to host my kids for the second year in a row. How great is that?

Emma suggested we put the houses around one of the trees and make it a "gingerbread subdivision." She's at work right now assembling roads and cars. I did draw the line at fake snow. The house is in shambles enough without vacuuming snow off the floor.

I wish I could have seen the big girls' houses this year. They astound me with their architectural designs. When I get pictures I'll post them.

I'm glad they do this each year. Other than the kids really looking forward to it, having the houses around really gets me in the Christmas spirit.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Don't Worry Mom and Dad...I'm In Good Hands...

Kevin and Sarah left today for Taiwan to go get Hannah Claire. Well, at least I think they did. With the recent ice storm and all the bad weather we've had ... I'm hoping they got off the ground and am praying for safe travels there and back.

We're so honored they've entrusted us with their "first child" Sedona to watch while they are gone. They looked just a little bit nervous when they left last night so I'm letting Sedona tell them how she's done her first 24 hours.

Dear Mom and Dad,

Thank goodness things have calmed down here quite a bit. I guess it isn't EVERY DAY that this family hosts a sleepover, coordinates a girls' night out in the midst of a massive power outage, and gets a canine houseguest. But that's what happened.

So far I can't complain. I'm getting A LOT of attention. There sure are a lot of little people here. Five tonight - but they say one is going home tomorrow. Whew!

I'm getting used to the kids. They all sure smell differently and I've had to check it out repeatedly to make sure I know which kid I'm dealing with. One of them has a particularly smelly bottom - though not all the time. It's the same one that spends a lot of time on the floor. He's about my size.

There are two girls - they take turns holding me on the couch. Their mom keeps cramping my style by making them get up and do chores and things. No matter - I've been keeping their spots warm until they come back.

Wrigley and I have adjacent beds and I must have been tired because someone said I snored in the night ... but I don't know anything about that.

Better go - treats to eat, things to sniff, and laps to lay on. Wish you were here! Have a good time in Taiwan!


Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Four Months Old!!!

In all the hustle and bustle of this holiday season, I haven't been taking enough pictures of Cooper and he's growing up soooo fast. He's fairly successful at getting objects to his mouth, is fascinated by his hands, and loves to stand up.

The poinsetta plants are just about his favorite things to look at right now. If he's in the living, he'll crane his neck to look at them. A smile lights up his face then his eyes glaze over as he stares and stares. It's a bit like baby porn.

But ... if it gives me a few extra minutes to load the dishwasher, then I'm a happy mama.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Dear Santa

I know that by now you have received all the letters from the kids. Please take exception to Emma's handwriting and Grayson and Claire's spelling and syntactical errors. The little two are new at this.

For the most part, the kids have all been good this year. Cooper is doing exceptionally well with sleeping through the night so he gets extra credit. Please continue your tradition of writing them a letter back and leaving it with their presents. Feel free to put in a paragraph about room for improvement. I would be happy to provide you with suggestions - just email me. I don't do texting.

As for me, it's difficult to come up with anything I would like - as I already have everything I could ever need with this incredible family I have right here in this house. However, as a glutinous citizen of the USA and natural born capitalist, there ARE a few things I could put down on my list.

1. Self-flushing toilet
2. Toilet paper roll dispenser that only gives as much tp as needed for 4, 5 and 7 year old bottoms (sold as an accessory to #1)
3. Thighs like Beyonce
4. An all night hair salon (it can't be just me that requires a three hour appt - carving that amount of time during the day just isn't easily done)
5. About five more hours built into every day (during which time the kids are asleep, my husband is awake, and all my favorite stores are open)

Oh - one more thing. Thank you for giving Sarah and Kevin their most amazing Christmas gift ever.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Visit With Santa

Thanks to GE, the kids were able to attend a visit with Santa yesterday, complete with a story reading from an elf, cookies, and gifts. It was a nice time and the kids really enjoyed their stuffed bears (wearing a GE sweater) and a great hardback book of classic Christmas stories.

Each one of the kids got a minute with Santa to tell him what they wanted most this year. They didn't tell me what they asked for (this is Emma's scientific method of testing whether Santa is real or not) but it got me thinking what I would ask for if I were brazen enough to climb up on Santa's lap. Maybe tomorrow I'll write him a letter.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Breakfast in Bethlehem

This weekend we had a busy Saturday. For the first year since we've been here, we actually attended Breakfast in Bethlehem at our church (we've bought tickets every year and had something come up and couldn't go). Actually, it was just Cooper, the girls and I. Monte took Grayson to his first ever swim meet. More on that later.

It was a really cute event. They had a pancake and sausage breakfast, live calves, a tasting table containing regional foods for the times (dates, figs, pomegranates, etc), a play, and a craft. Between the cows and the craft, my girls were over the moon. My friend Myah even looked the part of a very pregnant Mary as she and hubby Josh are due for their third baby in January.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Fun Updates

It's been just a little bit crazy around here maintaing the regular schedule with all the holiday stuff thrown in. It's really been just about all I can do to keep my head above water. I haven't been as consistent as I'd like with jounaling, blogging, OR exercising but I'm trying to just keep breathing deeply and knowing it's ALL GOOD.

Some fun updates ...

Cooper went to the doctor for his "almost four months" checkup. He weighs 18 and 1/2 pounds and is 26 inches long. He is 80 percentile for height, 90 percentile for head circumference, and is off the chart for weight. He also grew two inches since his last checkup. Good stuff.

He also got two shots. He was supposed to get many more, but this mama just doesn't feel like we need to give all these shots at the same time. He'll get them all - I'm not against vaccinations - just spread out a little more. We have an understanding at our ped's office. They do what I ask and I exhaust them. It works out well for both of us.

Also - we are officially dog-sitting for our friends Sarah and Kevin when they go to Taiwan in two weeks or so. Sedona and Wrigley had a little "meet and greet" last night. Sarah's blog explains it all so well, I'll just let you check it out over there if you are interested. The kids are over the moon about it. It was THE topic of discussion at the breakfast table this morning.

Oh, and I've gotten three Christmas cards so far. Not even close to doing ours yet so don't be looking for it this week ... or maybe next. Anyone for Happy New Year's cards?