Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Blog Break

I looked at someone's blog who had mine linked to theirs and it showed that my last post was five days ago. I knew it had been awhile, but didn't realize it had been that long. I normally am somewhat of a blog stalker, often checking my favorite blogs a couple of times a day to see if there is a new post. No pressure on anyone, though:) I usually really enjoy blogging every few days. Anyway, where have I been? Pretty much sleeping whenever my children sleep. I do not remember being this tired with Ellie or Luke's pregnancies. But this is also the first time I have been pregnant with two other children to take care of, so I don't know. There have been a few days that I honestly felt drugged and it was all I could do to meet their basic needs. Forget the other things-like house work. Thankfullly I am in the same place with my mom and we have almost moved in with her. My poor parents. Our dryer broke-so that's extra fun. And I have so much to do with the new house these days that I have recently let them take their naps at mom's house so I can run a few errands while they sleep (after I have slept a bit myself). Needless to say-super busy and blogging has fallen by the wayside.

As for the nausea-I have thrown up twice so far. Both times because I hopped out of bed too fast in the morning. But when your three year old is calling "mama!!"-that's just what you do, without thinking. So, now the saltine crackers have found their little home by my bed and will probably stay there for the next few months. Ellie and Luke seem to really think it's some kind of treat to eat saltine crackers first thing in the morning and have some along with their milk. I can't seem to get enough Subway sandwiches piled with crunchy veggies, especially sour ones, like banana peppers and pickles and a little vinegar as well. I decided today I can't go to Subway everyday so I bought my own stuff to make a sandwich at home. Also, last night at our favorite BBQ restaurant I finished off everyone's pickles. And although those things sound fairly healthy, unfortunately the weight gain is coming along nicely :( It makes me wonder if I'm having a girl, because no matter what I did with Ellie, it seemed the weight just came. And it seemed no matter what I ate with Luke, I did not really gain as much weight. Hmmm... That should be nice for my 10 yr. high school reunion in October. Oh well-that's life, right? Anyway, just wanted to say hey to all my blog friends and I haven't drowned in the midst of pregnancy and building a house.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Reality Check

I have read several blogs lately about struggles and the things that the Lord is doing in people's lives. One of them being my sister's blog. You should check it out (All Things Ada), it will bless your heart-it always does mine. And she is an excellent writer! She has her masters to teach English, so I am always wondering if she is secretly critiquing (sp?) my writing. J/K, LB-she isn't like that at all! Anyway, she was talking about how she is dealing with some surfacing bitterness (that she didn't even realize was there) over the things she has given up as a mom. I can certainly relate to that! I don't want to repeat everything she has said, but do want to echo that same thing that I certainly have/and continue to struggle with at times.

I feel very strongly that God has called me to stay at home with my children. Let me say that I absolutely feel more satisfied and fulfilled in my role as wife and mom than anything else I have ever done. But it is hard. Very hard. It requires more than any job I have ever had-BY FAR! It demands physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual strength-often on the spot. And so much wisdom-way more than I have. Which should always, always make me desperate for Christ and His Word. But here is the constant battle-I'm desperate for Him one minute and the next the flesh and pride creep in. I will often find myself going about my day without really examining my heart. I will often subconsciously think "I'm doing a pretty good job" and bam, Steven says something that didn't set well with me, or the kids are flipping out, and my reaction is not Christ-like, to say the least. And instantly the ugliness of my heart is revealed. Or maybe it's not so obvious. Things are going well on the surface and then I read something from His Word and the sin in my heart is not so subtle anymore. Steven often teaches that God's Word is like a road sign that reveals you are headed in the wrong direction-from 2 Tim. 2:16 "All Scripture is...profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness."

This very thing happened just the other day as I was reading from "Morning and Evening" by Charles Spurgeon. The verse is "You have been weighed in the balances and found wanting." -Daniel 5:27 He then writes, "It is good to regularly weigh ourselves in the scale of God's Word. You will find it a holy exercise to read some Psalm of David, and as you meditate upon each verse, to ask yourself, "Can I say this? Have I felt as David felt? Has my heart ever been broken on account of sin, as his was when he penned his penitential psalms?...Then turn to the life of Christ, and as you read, ask yourself how far you are conformed to His likeness. Then take the epistles, and see whether you can go with the apostle in what he said of his experience. Have you ever cried out as he did, "Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death?" Have you seemed to yourself the chief of sinners, and less than the least of all the saints? If in this way we read God's Word as a test of our spiritual condition, we will often have good reason to pause and say, "Lord, I feel I have never yet been here. O bring me here!

I read it several times. I just thought he put it so well. So this is when my not-so-great writing skills really show up. I am trying to wrap all this up and am having trouble. But basically, I am thankful for His grace and mercy and that He is patient with me and that He is doing a sanctifying work in my life. And although I don't feel that I give this impression, I would never want anyone to think from this blog that I "have it all together". I am so extremely grateful for the life God has entrusted me with and I want to enjoy it to the fullest, BUT I am a sinner, and so are the other three people that live in my house :) We do not live in a fairytale, but I will not hesitate to say that my prayer is for Christ to be seen and exalted in me and my family. And that He will continue to bring me to the end of myself as a mom, because it is so true what LB said-that this life isn't about us, it is about bringing Him glory. And she's right, my life is His. And the less of Ann there is and the more of Christ there is, then the more the people around me are going to enjoy me.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

I know this is the second post in one day, but you might really thank me. On Friday Ellie, Luke, a few of our friends from church, and I all went to Bridgestreet and let the kids play in the splash pad (isn't that what those are called?) We also stopped by Bath and Body Works for their 75% off sale. It ends today! I got those wallflower plug-ins for $5 (normally $12.50). Now my house smells like pink grapefruit. (2 refills are also $5) I also love, love their moisturizing handsoap! It is my favorite because it is antibacterial and it really does leave your hands much softer than regular handsoap. And it smells so good. How could you not love that stuff? (5 for $15)

And here a few pictures of Ellie and Luke in the water. They loved it!

Haircuts & Scissors

Ellie has recently taken a big interest in haircuts and scissors. So far, I haven't taken her anywhere, because I would like it to be long and all it has required is a little trimming on the ends. But as I wrote about in a recent post, I take Luke to get his haircut, so Ellie has now seen what a "real" haircut is. As for the scissors, I'm not sure if she used them this year at preschool or not, but that isn't something we've ever done at home. I have thought a few times that she's probably ready for a child's pair (supervised, of course). Anyway, the other day I got out of the shower and things were very quiet. Luke was napping, and I really don't worry about Ellie anymore if things are quiet. But I went to check on her and she had found the haircutting scissors (extremely sharp) and had cut some paper into lots of little pieces. I gave her the schpill about not ever using those scissors and we would get her some of her own soon. So then this morning I was getting ready for church and heard her giving Luke instructions to sit in the chair so she could cut his hair(she only had pretend scissors). Then she instructed him to give her a haircut. I snuck in and took a few pictures. All that to say, I'm anticipating the dreaded moment when you realize your child has cut a huge chunk out of their hair (probably right in the front). I just feel it coming. I am trying to avoid that, but the signs are all there. Of course, I will let you know if that happens and pictures would definitely be included.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

I Must Be Pregnant Because...

This morning I was making pancakes and after I poured the milk in I noticed that it smelled a little funny and the batter was thicker than it should be. So I smelled the milk and wasn't quite sure. I then poured a little in a cup and tasted just a bit. Note to self: If you pregnant in your first trimester DO NOT taste milk that you even think could be soured. It might have been the worst thing I have ever put in my mouth. I immediately started gagging and dry heaving over the sink. I couldn't get the taste to go away either. I was frantic to find something else to drink. Ellie was sitting on the counter and kept asking if I was okay. I was finally able to get it together after some juice. You know really, I don't know if I wasn't pregnant, that I wouldn't have done exactly the same thing, it was so disgusting!!

Also, today when I was in the shower, I shaved one leg, but forgot to shave the other. Again, maybe it's not a pregnancy thing, but we'll just blame it on that.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008


Yes, that's right. You're looking at a positive pregnancy test taken by me on Sun. morning! Looks like we're going to be having our third baby in February! It came as quite a surprise, but we are absolutely thrilled. Steven and I knew we wanted to have another one, but would've liked to have waited just a few more months until we got settled into our new house. You know, moving in the heat of July and being nauseous-not so fun. But that's okay, God knows and His grace is sufficient. Sun. morning it hit me that you know, my monthly visitor had not arrived as it does on time every single month. So, at 5:30 in the morning I went to Wal-Mart to buy a pregnancy test because I knew I would not be able to go back to sleep for thinking about it. Steven was a bit confused, since I had not even mentioned any possibility of being pregnant to him. Sure enough, that little pink line popped right up. Praise the Lord! It really is such a blessing. Especially since I have several friends who have quite a hard time getting pregnant on their own, it makes me so thankful that it is so easy for us. It truly is humbling to know that God has seen fit to bless us with another life. It makes me think, "God, really? Sometimes I don't feel as though I'm doing a very good job with the ones I have." I know you other moms know exactly what I am talking about.

So, I am also very excited to experience this pregnancy in the South, with family around. It hit me last night that all my family can be there this time. Ellie seems to really get it. (I mean, as much as she can) When I first told her, I explained that my belly would get big and when it was time, I would go to the hospital and the doctor would take the baby out. She didn't like the idea of me going to the hospital, it upset her a little. But now she seems excited and will ask me a few times a day "Mom, do you still have a baby in your tummy?" She also refers to the baby as she; "She will grow up and play with me", "Is she sleeping right now?" If I could pick, I would pick a boy, mainly for several different convenience purposes. But, we'll be thrilled with whatever the Lord chooses to give us. Also, I've been wrong with both of my pregnancies, I thought Ellie was a boy and was convinced Luke would be another girl. I'm pretty sure we will find out what we're having. I like the idea of waiting since we already have one of each. But again, I am the type who likes to have things organized and ready, so I think when it comes down to it, we will find out. That's about it. Oh, and I'm feeling really good for now, but it usually hits me around 8 weeks. I kind of think of it as the calm before the storm. So, stay tuned. I'll keep you updated on everything as our family (and my belly) continues to grow.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

2 Things About Ellie

I was looking at the pictures I just posted of Ellie and Luke in the chair and noticed that Ellie's big cheese reveals pretty clearly her missing front tooth. No one may have even noticed, but I thought if any of you were wondering "Has she already lost a tooth?"-I would fill you in on why at age three, she has a missing front tooth. When Luke was maybe, at the most, 8 weeks old (Ellie at the most 18 mo.) I was at home getting ready to nurse Luke. He was in my arms and I was trying to get to the sofa to sit, and in doing that I kind of tripped over Ellie, knocking her to the ground. She was crying, but not abnormally hard, so I laid Luke down(crying because he was hungry) and noticed blood running out of her mouth. My first thought was that she busted her lip, so I took her to the sink to try and rinse the blood out and it hit me to check for teeth. (Luke still screaming, Ellie screaming) I raised her upper lip and beneath all the blood, there was definitely no tooth. My heart kind of dropped into my stomach and I felt a little nauseous(sp?). So, I walked back over by the couch and there it was, the entire tooth on the carpet. Now, you may think it would've been hard to find because baby teeth are so small. But it came out root and all and I am here to tell you that baby teeth roots are just as big or bigger than the actual tooth. My nausea increased a bit and I started making phone calls. I talked to a pediatric dentist and just FYI-you can put a tooth back in and hope that the root reattaches to the tooth, but it's very possible that it won't and it's an uncomfortable process for the child. And it could easily get knocked out again, possibly causing the child to choke on it. So, needless to say, we decided to let her go snaggle for the next several years. It's just become part of her now. (side note-Probably the most stressful moment I have had since having two children)

Okay, second Ellie story. This one is much happier. The other night Steven and I were going to have a night out to dinner at this fabulous new Mexican restaurant in Huntsville at Bridgestreet. Well, when Ellie woke up from her nap, she was not at all happy that I was leaving her for the night. So, because she had had a great nap, we just decided to take her with us. We had a wonderful dinner and then decided to go to the Chocolate Crocodile. Chocolate heaven! Ellie picked out two white chocolate covered pretzels, one with sprinkles, one without. She couldn't finish both, so we put the one with sprinkles in the bag and she wanted to carry it herself. We enjoyed our walk back to the car, passing the fountains and all the shops. When we got to the car, we realized she didn't have the bag anymore. She was pretty upset, so Steven went back to look for it. Ellie and I circled around in the car, waiting for him. We really weren't saying much and all of a sudden from the backseat I hear "Thank you for this day, thank you for my pretzels, thank you for Daddy" I looked in the rearview mirror and her eyes were shut so tightly! Now, she prays often, but it has always been because of prompting, she may pray on her own by herself, but I have never heard her do it. Because she was really hoping for Steven to find the pretzel, I said "Ellie, why don't you pray and ask Jesus to help Daddy find the pretzel." And she said, "Mom, I already did." It kind of confirmed what I was already thinking-that her saying thank you for everything was her way of asking God to show Steven where her bag was. It blessed my heart so much. I pray, and truly believe that the Holy Spirit can work in a child's heart, no matter what age, and through the simplest things. Well, I was convinced Steven would return with the bag, but he didn't. But Ellie really seemed okay about it. She kept talking about "a little boy maybe got it. " I don't know where she got that, but again, you just don't know if God gave her a peace in her heart about. These verses have come alive to me since I have had children- "And they were bringing children to Him so that He might touch them; and the disciples rebuked them. But when Jesus saw this, He was indignant and said to them, "Permit the children to come to Me; do not hinder them; for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. Truly I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it at all." Mark 10:13-15

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Funny Pictures

I left Ellie and Luke with Steven tonight while I went to Bible Study. When I got home, the huge pile of clothes on the chair (some of which I had already folded) were completely messed up. When I asked him why, he just showed me these pictures. Please notice Luke's super short haircut and his wet shirt that is from drool. He will be 21 months on Jun. 10 and he still soaks his shirts most days. He is not teething right now, either (that I know of). I think he may just be an extra-drooly baby. We wouldn't trade him for anything though, drool and all. Even when it is chocolate drool or sticky sucker drool :) Also, there are a few pictures of Ellie getting Luke to dance with her. She pretends that he is the prince. He is okay with this sometimes, but not always.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Paint Color Marathon

So, I have just finished picking all the paint colors for every square inch of my entire new house. I have picked out lots of paint colors before, but never for that many rooms in only a few days. Also, I have always been living wherever I was painting, so I could just come home after going to the paint store. Not, go to the paint store, go to the new house, then go back home to the rental house. I don't want to sound like I am complaining too much. It really was a fun thing to do. And I am so thankful to have this opportunity-ESPECIALLY that someone else is doing the painting!! But there were a few of the colors that got on the wall and it really felt like they were saying "nana nana boo boo" and sticking their tongue out at me. Like it just wasn't the color that was on the swatch and I didn't really know how to find the color that I had in mind. It is so much pressure. Now, I know that no one in the whole world is going to care as much about what colors are on the wall, except me (Steven almost, but not quite). But colors can make or break a house.

So, I have made SEVERAL trips to Sherwin-Williams over the past few days, so many that when I walked in this afternoon, I just smiled and said "guess who?" The girl was making fun of me, because I had used up all the quart size samples. At first it was funny, but then she really started giving me a hard time. She even told me the painter had come in and was joking that I had painted so much on the walls, that I hadn't left them that much to do. I'm a little confused, because isn't that what you do when you're trying to find the right colors? Its kind of trial and error until you find the right color. I don't know, maybe I am a little OCD about it. Oh well, we'll see if it paid off tomorrow when they start putting all the colors up.

What were Ellie and Luke doing all day? Well, Ellie helped me on one of my trips to the house. She thoroughly enjoyed using a paint brush, dipping it in the paint, and getting to paint on a blank wall. And I should've known better than to let her in a house with all wet doors and trim. So, we left with white paint on one of her best play dresses.

Luke had a rough morning, because I took him in for his second haircut (of his entire life). He HATES haircuts. He knew exactly where we were as soon as we walked in and was just clinging to me, sobbing. I let him sit in my lap, but it was no help. He just kept his face buried in my chest until I had to pry him away so the barber could cut the front. Ellie was sympathetic for a second and came over and patted him on the back. But after that she was involved in some sort of pretend game where she would walk back and forth from the window to the chair, talking to somebody. Things got much better for Luke when it was over and the barber gave him a sucker. He kept it while we ran a few errands, and was still working on it at lunch. I didn't have the heart to take it away after his traumatic experience, so he would eat a few bites of lunch and then take a lick of his sucker. His hair is a bit shorter than last time, so we won't have to go back for quite awhile. I will post some pictures soon.