Wednesday, September 30, 2009

And The Winner Is....

Jenny!!! Jenny is a fellow-blogger who I met online one day after googling "Confessions of a Stay at Home Mom" to see if anyone else had written about what I just posted. Come to find out, we have 2 boys the same age, and they are ever so alike in personality. I love reading her blog! Congratulations on winning the $5 Starbucks gift card!! Of all the people I know, you, my pregnant and nauseous bloggy friend, so deserve this!! (You can thank Martin, by the way, who picked from all the worthy entries out of a coffee mug) :) Just send me your address and it is on its way!

Stay tuned everyone for 2 more giveaways in the next few weeks!!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Living By Lists

Are you a list-maker? I have a love affair with lists. Honestly. I was making lists as far back as I can remember. One of my first "lists" was when I was about 8 years old, and made a library check-out system for all of my books so that my friends could check them out. Nice friend, huh? I categorized them alphabetically by the author's last name, then put little index cards in each book with a return date. I still remember doing this, and getting frustrated that not all of my friends wanted to check out my books.

I still make lists. But somewhere between getting pregnant with Micah and now (4.3 years ago), I became one of the most disorganized moms on the planet. Put me in an office, my desk will be color-coded, alphabetized, and neat. But at home, I am a mess.

Just recently I started using a few lists that have helped make my life a little easier. And in good list fashion, here's a list of them:

-A Menu "List". Parents Magazine has a year long menu organizer ("Meal Planner Plus") that I bought at Target, and I love it. I now plan out my meals 2 weeks at a time, and keep the calendar on the fridge. Even if you don't own this, you can print out your own planner at

-A Shopping List. Sounds simple, but I used to do this every 2 weeks and then always forget something. Now I just keep an on-going one on the fridge. Got a magnetic one at Target for $1. (Can you tell I'm there a lot?)

-A Chore List. This has our household chores broken down by the day. I put this on the fridge with boxes for each item so I know if I've done them or not. (If anyone wants me to post this, just let me know and I will do it).

-An on-going "To Do" List. This is in my planner, but I have it broken down by each area that I deal with every day: Household, Errands, Phone Calls, Emails, Ministry, Work. Keeping it separate really helps me to prioritize better.

What lists am I missing? Do you have any lists that help you be more organized each week? I want to know! After all, I do love lists!! :)

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

A Getaway and a GIVEAWAY!

The old song "Leavin' On a Jet Plane" has been running through my head since yesterday. I'm sure you'll appreciate reading that because now it can be in YOUR head too!!! :) Tomorrow morning at 7am I am bound for Nashville, TN for the National MOPS Convention!! I am really excited, but also sad to be leaving the boys behind (okay, and Martin too). Everyone keeps saying "enjoy this time!" but I have not had 17 hours totally alone for over 4 years! What will I DO with myself?! (The other girls don't arrive until midnight tomorrow night).

I'll tell you what I'll do - spend 5 hours on the airplane, take a taxi to the airport (alone), wait in a very long line and hope that they still have a room left with enough beds (heard that was a problem last year), then immediately go to registration and a general session. I'll eat dinner (alone), go back to my room, change into my bathing suit, and then soak in the spa. Aaaaahhhh!!! That is music to my ears. At 1am I will wake up to welcome the other 2 women who flew in, and then get some sleep. I'm REALLY looking forward to Friday night, when I will get to re-connect with one of my BFF's from high school who I have not seen since I was 15 years old!! We are going to eat at the Cracker Barrel, my FAV!

AND, as I promised, I am doing another giveaway for my 190th post! Here it is - you have until Monday night at midnight to enter! Just leave me a comment and you're IN!

In honor of the Pumpkin Spice Latte, and to welcome FALL (which arrived just yesterday), enter to win a $5 Starbucks Gift Card (not much, I know, but you might be able to squeeze 2 drinks out of it, and hey, who doesn't love free gift cards in ANY amount, right?!) :)

Friday, September 18, 2009

Celebrating 10 Years!!!

10 years ago today...

I married my best friend.
We had 8 bridesmaids and 7 groomsmen.
We honeymooned in Whistler, Canada.
We lived in a 700 square foot apartment in a beautiful complex.
Both of us worked full time at the college we had graduated from.
We wanted to wait 2 years until we went into the ministry.
We wanted to wait 5 years until we had children.
We wanted one boy, and one girl.
We were young, but so in love.


We have grown deeper in love.
We have changed and become better because of the other.
We have had 10 years of fun, laughs, tears and forgiveness.
We waited almost 3 years before going into ministry and just completed 7 years.
We found out I was pregnant right around our 5th anniversary.
We have 2 boys and could not imagine it any other way.
We are older, wiser and have persevered through the storms.
God has created us for each other; his strengths are my weaknesses, and my strengths are his weaknesses. God knew that we would need one another.
It is an adventure, one I am thankful to share with my best friend.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

First Week of School

All week long I have had these posts in my head for this blog, but you know why I haven't posted? Because I promised that on my 190th post I would do another giveaway (great intentions) and then forgot to actually get something to give away!!! Ah, I know my few readers would let me off the hook, but I am a woman of my word, so I have instead procrastinated on blogging so I can come up with a giveaway. Today is my 189th post, so hopefully I will think of something good by my next post!! :)

Let me tell you what this week entailed for us:

-Sunday I preached at church. I spoke on "Resting During the Busy Seasons of Life." This message had been so heavy on my heart that it was just bursting to get out of me. (If you'd like, you can listen to it here.) This Sunday I was nervous, because it was our first week back after 6 weeks and I hadn't seen anyone in so long. Also, there was a new couple at church (maybe more). Why does that make me nervous? Because I know that some people have a problem with women preaching. The first time I gave a sermon, a couple left when they heard I was preaching that morning and eventually left the church (that being one of the smaller issues they had). So, as much as I want to just focus on the message that God laid on my heart, I am well aware that some people have an issue with hearing from a woman, and I never know who might react to that. My pastor is so supportive. His view is that God is the head of the church, not him, and if anyone has a problem with it, they can view him (the pastor) as the "authority" over me. I am so thankful that I have an outlet to use this gift and it is not being suppressed, like so many of my other female friends. Okay. Enough of that for now. I am not one to hotly debate this issue; I am just thankful that I can be free to use the gifts God has given me.

-On another TOTALLY different note, on Micah's first day of school, he did so well. Except that he did not want his picture taken. So I took 3 consecutive pictures of him turning his back to me, and those will have to do for his "first day of school pictures." BUT. That night Martin took the camera to the Dodger game, and it fell out of his bag and we seem to have lost the camera forever. This is devastating to me. Even though Micah's back was turned, it was his FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL PICTURES!! My only consolation is that he did go to the same preschool last year, so we do still have those pictures. I am still so sad about it though, I can't stop thinking about it. I researched before buying this camera. We saved up. Only $125, mind you, but that's a lot of money to us. There was a 2 gb memory card in there full of pictures and video. To a photographer, this is devastating! I have a trip to Nashville next week (for the National MOPS Convention) and have no camera to take now!! On top of that, I'm getting to see a friend I haven't seen since I was 15 years old. So you can imagine my disappointment. Ugh.

-On ANOTHER TOTALLY different note, today I have to take our new kitten in to the vet. He seems to be sick. He has not been himself and we're a bit concerned. Cha-Ching$$$!!!

-And yet on one more totally different note, I have a dentist appointment on Monday. Where I'm sure she will inform me that I, again, need at least $3000 in dental work, and that my HMO insurance won't cover most of it. I will likely need at least one root canal, along with all 4 wisdom teeth removed, a deep root cleaning, and a few fillings. Yes, this is the typical dentist visit for me, which is precisely why I haven't gone in 3 years. The last time I went, my teeth were chattering because I was so afraid (I'm not lying) and they had to keep my mouth open with a clamp. Oh, and because of my gag reflex, I practically threw up the entire time she worked on me. Please pray for me!!!

This has been week one of the first week of school. Adventurous, yes. Exciting, yes. And a little nerve wracking. And I'm so glad I can share it with each of you :)

Friday, September 11, 2009

Fun Times with J

Jaden is growing so fast. He is now 2 years and 4 months old, and his vocabulary has just exploded. It is such a different experience from what we had with Micah. At this age (just turned 2), we were just realizing the extent of Micah's speech delay and he could still only say a few words. Jaden, on the other hand, communicates in full sentences and can carry on a lengthy conversation, even telling stories. I think part of this is just growing up with a big brother. He has been watching the video The Letter Factory, and now knows all of the letters and sounds. Yesterday I found him looking at his sippy cup and naming the letters! "The S says sssssss", and he went on to spell SCOOP." I just believe more than ever that we cannot compare kids progress, because they are all so different. There are kids more advanced than Jaden, and I could get sad that he's not at their level. But when I look back at Micah at this age, I am amazed at Jaden's progress. So it's all in perspective.

Jaden is definitely in the "mine" stage. Especially when we are around other kids. He carries his two Thomas trains everywhere, and no matter where we go, if he sees another kid from across the room, he pulls his trains close to him, turns to the side and says "mine!"

Martin took the boys to the park yesterday, and he was swinging Jaden on the swings. Another little boy came to play, and Jaden furrowed his brow and said "Hmph! Mine!" Martin saw that Jaden was looking at the little boy, and Jaden said "playground mine!" Martin said "Jaden, the playground is not yours." "Not my playground?" Jaden replied. "No, it's everyone's playground, Jaden." Jaden said, "everyone's playground? We share?"

Today a little girl named Trinity came over, and Jaden was having trouble sharing. Everything that she wanted to play with, he threw a fit. We think this might partly be because very few toys are actually his; the boys share all of their toys (well, actually, Micah takes all of Jaden's toys, so that makes more sense). Anyway, at dinner I told Jaden, "Jaden, all of our toys are from God. They are God's toys. We are just borrowing them. That is why you need to share with Trinity." Jaden said, "I share with God. I share with Jesus." Not Trinity, just God & Jesus.

Here are a few of Jaden's other favorite sayings:
"I farted!" (followed by tons of giggles)
"I bupped. Excuse me" (followed by tons of giggles)
"Watch The Letter Factory, Mommy?"
"Lay with me mommy! Tell me a story about The Wiggles."
"Micah hut me!"

He talks constantly in the loudest voice possible. He seems to shout every sentence. And because he's still trying to speak correctly, he spits a lot when he's talking, and ends up with drool on his chin. He has grown so much... We love our little "googy"!!!

Here are some older pictures of him and his personality (he STILL has the binky, by the way...):

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Back to Reality!

Below is a post I started last week while we were at my parent's house. We are now back from our mini-vacation, and we had so much fun. It was hard to come back to reality!! Last Sunday we visited my "home" church; the church I went to in high school and early college. It was so fun running into people I hadn't seen in over 10 years. I was really nervous to go - nervous about how the boys would do in their classes, how I'd feel around people I hadn't seen in so long, etc... but all of that was put to rest the minute we walked in the door. I felt like I was home. After church, three of us couples went out to eat with our six kids in tow, and it was so fun introducing our boys to our friend's kids.

During our trip last week, we also got to spend time with my family, visit with friends, and go to the San Diego Zoo. It was 104 degrees in my parent's city, but thankfully we were able to stay in their air-conditioned home during the afternoon sun. When we came back here, it was 85 degrees out, but felt even hotter inside the house because we have no air conditioning! Go figure...

Here are some pics from the Zoo:

Micah was NOT happy to go on the aereal tram!!

We got a new kitty the day after we came home, too. He is an 8-week old "snuggler" that I found at the shelter. Micah wants to name him Gilbert (after the cat in the the cartoon "Caillou") but I just think this kitty looks like a "Toby!" We joke all day long calling him both names... should I be a good mommy and just let Micah name him? :)

Anyway, here is the post I started last week:

During this trip, Micah has been cracking us up with some things he has said. Here are a few:

On the way down here, we drove by a high school with a large cougar mascot painted on the wall. Micah said "Mommy, do they learn about animals there?"

Sunday morning he woke up and said loudly during breakfast, "Papa's Fat!" and then he started giggling. My dad touched his belly and said "My belly's fat because I ate a little boy!" Micah very seriously replied, "you ate a boy?" My dad said, "Yes. I ate a boy who was naughty." Micah's eyes grew bigger. He could tell that Micah thought this story was true, so he said, "Oh, I'm just joking." Micah replied, "You joked with the boy and then you ate him?!" We might be explaining that one for awhile :)

Micah just told me, "Mommy, you smell like junk!" Somewhere along the way he thought of this saying and now says it at VERY inappropriate times. A friend of mine came over recently to visit with her new baby, and Micah walked over to her and said "You smell like junk!" We can't help but laugh, which only reinforces it. It is pretty funny ;)