January 27, 2015

24 Weeks Baby Number Three and Frazzled

Here's the thing. I'm not where I want to be. But I wasn't at 24 weeks with Sophie either and now I love that I have that picture and it was documented so I will share this.

Just like the last 24 weeks while pregnant with Sophie I am frazzled (and 24 weeks pregnant with Claire).

This is the month where Jacob travels a lot and it's hard.

So here I am in my yoga pants and wrinkled shirt with my hair undone. But I wanted to remember it's length and these frazzled days with two (very) lively little girls (3 1/2 and 1 1/2) who love to seek out mischief together... but I'm sooo thankful they have so much fun together and love being with each other.

You can tell I was frustrated by my children's smiles (or lack thereof). But we got it done!

To clarify- I know I'm big. Telling a pregnant woman that is just rude. Asking if the woman is sure there aren't multiples in there is rude. I've been big with both girls too. With Claire I thought it was because of the bizarre surgery while I was 16 weeks pregnant (and maybe it was) or maybe it's just my frame/make up. So...

How far along? 24 weeks  (Baby's the length of a cantaloupe or about 12 inches from head to heel).

Total weight gain: 16 lbs. Clearly not doing well this pregnancy....

Maternity clothes? Um.. seriously? I never left them.

Stretch marks? No.

Sleep: Decent but trouble falling asleep.

Miss Anything?  So much it's not funny. Mainly my patience.

Movement:  A lot! This little one is active.

Food cravings:  Not really. Just eating too much junk.. :(

Anything making you queasy or sick: Aspartame.

Gender: It's a BOY!
Labor Signs: No.

Symptoms: Heartburn. So.. according to the wife's tales he should have a head of hair (that would be a first!). Extreme hip pain. Extremely extreme.

Belly Button in or out? Outie ish.

Wedding rings on or off? No... I've already started to swell up. Thanks a lot poor eating.

Happy or Moody most of the time: Mostly happy and carefree but the patience.. where did my patience go?!

Highlight of the week: Claire and Sophie playing and giggling together so much.. It's such a gift. And... I'm turning 36 this week! So here's to being pregnant and over 35. Woop.

Looking forward to: Getting  the girls transitioned into one room. They are super excited (well, Claire is, Sophie has no idea what's happening).

January 6, 2015

To just not care

I've been silent for far too long.

Striking out and "really" blogging was an interesting move I don't regret. But life is real and doesn't stop.

All of the demands and expectations of writing with intention, purpose, focus, and "something to offer" is truly exhausting. Not to mention adding a watermarked or public domain image and including graphics... utterly exhausting to tell you the truth. But enjoyable. Then there comes life. Today I am 21 weeks pregnant. What?!

Originally I blogged here to connect with far away family. Then, when I realized that my most faithful reader (ME!), loves to reread old posts for recollection purposes, I began to write with my favorite reader in mind (ME). This is a huge "real blogging" no-no.

So starting the "real" blog I had a conflict of motivation and freedom to write.

And it has silenced me.


 But sometimes... You know what?... I just don't care. I want to look back and remember how I shared my big news (what a romantic post this will make).

But I will tell you one thing, I will remember this fed up feeling of being confined by all of the rules. As a teacher, baker and citizen I'm a real crazy rule follower. But as an independent, living my life woman I am NOT. So I'm writing what I want right now with NO image.

The last I had posted on my "real" blog I had joined weight watchers. And found out I was pregnant two days later.

Who wants to count points anyway? ;)

 So here I am at 21 weeks pregnant, half way there, with a little boy to bless our home in May. My hips are exploding as they always are and I'm fighting the urge to mentally and with kindness, punch every woman who says how her hips never hurt and she never felt better than while pregnant. That's great for them, really, but when you feel like a barge in bed trying to roll over and your hips actually feel like they are unhinging... well... the pain is kind of always on your mind.

The girls are thrilled about sharing a room soon and Claire wants to name little brother baby Isaac or baby Jesus. Sophie really has no clue what's happening but when Claire squeals and dances with excitement then Sophie tromps behind her squealing in delight.

And that's life.

 I've been a stay at home mom, no job out side of the home kind of lady for coming on FOUR years.. Can you imagine? I've worked past the awkward first year of feeling pent up, frustrated and unsure and then through the comparing years to follow to figure out how our life works at home.

What is perfect, functional and acceptable for us.

 And funny things have sprung from this heap pile of composting emotions.  

Our marriage is more honest. 

  When we were "single" (married but before kids), I always felt like it was hard to 'relax' at home, like I had to be working, productive or prove myself.

Now I've got relaxation down to an art and I don't care if Jacob sees me on the couch for two straight hours doing nothing.

It sounds small but it took years of excusing myself: "The girls JUST went down!", "I'm so exhausted they were up all night," and he spent years saying, "You don't have to excuse yourself. I NEVER think you're lazy." Until finally, this beautiful blossoming of me not caring and sitting and staring whenever I want occurred.


 It's a beautiful thing.

So that's all from these parts. I'm growing by the day but so are our two sweet girls. We still have our fur critters in the backyard. Our lives are punctuated right now by doctor's visits and the exciting uncertainty of how a new human will substantially and forever change our lives for the better.

Isn't it great to share?

 If there is a reader other than me, then what's worth sharing in your life?

September 5, 2014

3 Year Old Interview

Look guys! Twice in one month! If you want regular posts please visit me at Oatmeal Smiles where I post regularly!

We have a clever and witty little 3 year old on our hands.

She started pre-school this past Wednesday and had a paper circle sent home with her as a "homework assignment". It should be decorated "about her".

In preparation I asked her some questions and wanted to save the response here.

Interview with a 3 Year Old

Claire- Age 3 

What is your favorite book? Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star (?)

What is your favorite story? The Three Little Pigs, but it's a little bit scary. The Big Bad Wolf isn't real though. 

Who should we put on your circle? Bailey, Rogan, Athan, Carly, Dakota... CLAIRE! 

What do you love? Trees! Leaves! 

What is your favorite show? Angelina Ballerina. 

What do you like to play? School... Church... 

What else do you like to do? Drawing pictures.. Sparkles.. Pink... Cats. 

What do you want to be when you grow up? A doctor! 

What is your favorite food? "Atemeal" (oatmeal).

What is your favorite song? "Holy, Holy, Holy". (side note: the other day I heard her singing this hymn with an added "Holy, Holy moly!")

What is your favorite place to go? The zoo. I want to go there with Aunt B today! 

She's a hoot!

Happy weekend friends!


Absence.. They say it makes the heart grow fonder.

So.. Feeling any fonder?!

Seriously, it's been months and I'm so sorry! 

I've been putting so much effort into Oatmeal Smiles that I've completely neglected this blog that I love so dearly.

Forgive me?

What we've been up to:

We travelled up to Nebraska for J's work. We visited friends along the way and went to the Omaha zoo. Awesome.

Then we visited grandparents.

And just last week we went to the beach (Gulf Shores Alabama which is beautiful!! Who knew?!)

That's it in a nutshell!
Gratuitous beach shot. Because beaches rock and I love this picture!

The girls are at the stage where they are playing together. Moments of wild laughter and giggling interposed with desperate screams and crashes. Aw.. Sweet sisterhood!

Little S is taking tentative steps and is so incredibly cuddly. Miss C is independent and loving mommy only right now so I'm eating it all up!

What have you been up to? I've missed you guys over here!

May 2, 2014

Who You Are/Who They Will Be

My friends,
I've really neglected you. If you were an ivy your soil would be a little dry clump and your leaves would be wilting. Forgive me!

Today I was talking with a friend about how our children are becoming who we are- not who we are telling them to be.

Ouch... double ouch.

I've been posting over at Oatmeal Smiles about my anger.. These tantrums of Claire's and her defiance have really brought out edges in my heart that I'd rather not know were there.

Parenting is hard.

Wonderful and full of blessings...

And hard and full of sanctification.

I am not as patient, kind, disciplined or self controlled as I would like to be. Me in my yoga pants with unbrushed hair at 3 in the afternoon every day of the week is not me living the high life.

Add to that my distraction and lack of grace in tantrum season...

Talk about a perspective shift...

What about yourself, your habits, your weaknesses do you hope they will not be?
What do you hope for them? What traits do you want them to have?

More simply put:

If you imagine your children growing up to live your life how does it make you feel?

What a reality check for me.

I want my children to love their own children the way I do (and hopefully better). I want them to be in a kind and committed marriage to a gentle man like I am.

But I want other.

I want them to have self control where I do not.

I want them to have confidence where I lack it.

I want them to default to prayer rather than despair.

I want them to be gentle and patient as a default. I do not want them to anger easily. I want them to live big lives full of faith and to not be easily discouraged or disheartened.

Do I want them to feel about themselves the way I do about myself now? In my post baby body that is not my top priority? No way.  Never.

And in that, I had a big perspective shift today.

It's something I need to think long and hard on.

How would you live differently if you knew your children would live life the way you are?

April 8, 2014

Big Bad Wolf- Reflections on an almost three year old and her side kick

That's a long title my friend.

But I've missed it here.

And I'm excited.

Sit back and prepare for lots of caps locks. And if you love me AT ALL comment. If not, I will mail you something horrible.. like a half eaten noodle.

And I know who you are. (kind of).

So today I've kicked up my socked feet and am going to give you some insight into the wonderful shenanigans that is our life.

Tang It

And... that pantry is why I wanted this house. Clearly.
The other day I heard a little voice from the pantry say, "Mommy, I spilled a little."

I went in and there was Claire standing over an entire emptied container of Tang.

My face... I was holding back my frustration and shock.

Then she very gently said, "Everybody makes mistakes."

Anger dissipated.

I love this girl.

Claire is obsessed with stories. Obsessed I tell you.

Goldilocks. She now asked for "porridge" in the morning and when she lays down for her nap she says, "aaah... Jussst right!"

She asks me to tell her specific stories from my childhood. Right now her favorite is the time I got my shoelace caught in my bike and crashed.. then I ran home crying, dragging the bicycle behind me.

Only, then she begins to retell it as though it happened to her....

"When I was a little girl... I went fast fast fast on my bike! And I went CRASH!"

The Three Little Pigs.. Oh My Word. The big bad wolf is EVERYWHERE. Today she was running in the back yard with sheer delight which can only be attained from being a toddler and having zero, zilch, nada worries. Then she would stop and yell at the top of her lungs, "You're being TOO loud class!"

Then suddenly a squeal and I said, "What's wrong?!"
And she said, "Nothin'. Just scaring away the Big Bad Wolf."


And in the afternoon as a helicopter puttered overhead she threw her head back in wonder and yelled up at it, "BIGGGGG BAAAAAAADDDD WWWOOOOOLLLLFFFFF!!!!"

And in that moment, my hands covered in wet dark soil, the 9 month old's slobbery lips covered in dry grass, I thought to myself, "THIS is the best moment of my life."

And it is.

Giving up a career and work for "this"?

Totally worth it.

And the little one.. Oh the sweet little one.

With her little round head, big brown eyes, and sweet and easy demeanor.

Today she:
-sat up in her crib by herself for the first time
-finally crawled FORWARD for the first time instead of backwards around the entire living room
-finally clapped both hands together...
-started fake laughing/coughing and squnching up her face and showing her little upper gums in a fake smile

It's all just too cute not to share.

March 20, 2014

Blog Tips, Blog Awards and Jo!

This is a pic from March 15, 2014. See, I'm behind but still plugging away!

I am still making an effort to post a bit less of the girls to give them a break.

Today Oatmeal Smiles got an award! You can check it out here at "Blog Killers and Blog Thrillers: What Makes a Blog Successful."

Other bloggers always said they loved the blogging community and I never really got engaged in it until Oatmeal Smiles (where I'm actually wanting more traffic) verses here where I'm pretty established with friends from my daily life.

For the first time I'm seeing what people have been talking about!

Tea Party!

Today I went for lunch in a tea room and Claire LOVED it! Complete with tiaras, big brimmed-flower-topped hats, boas and all. We "may" have a birthday party there this summer! ;)


Claire officially has a filler word.
She says "Detta" in response to most anything.

"How are you feeling?" Detta!
"What do you want to eat?" Detta!
"Is this your cup?" Detta!

And there is only one word to describe Sophie. Sweet. She's such a character and acts shy and smiley all the time.

I love it!

If you blog, do you feel like you have a blog community or blog friends?
What about facebook?

March 19, 2014

Worn: Motherhood rubs a hole in your heart

March 14, 2014

There's something about this picture I love.

I've seen it in my mind for days now and finally had to capture it.

This worn corner of the table is where Claire sits. The left side even more worn from her little left hand which she favors.

It captures this phase of our lives...
Dried oatmeal I scrape off so many times a week.

It's worn, like us. 

 Sleep deprived and not as young as we were at the start of this journey.

But more beautiful for being on it.

More beautiful by being rubbed raw and bare.

Motherhood does this to you I think. 

Rubs a hole in your heart so you no longer can hold any love back.

Worn; in the most beautiful way...

March 17, 2014

March 14, 2014

Did the title (date) of this post confuse you? Sorry! I'm behind but not giving up!

This sweet girl wanted to help with dishes. And she did. She really, really did. The girls have been sick with colds etc. so we've been not sleeping well and busy. But life is good.

She was VERY unhappy that her shirt was wet and we changed it about three times.

She is so like me and so very unlike me (in her neatness and order that is). :)

March 15, 2014

Nap Tricks & I got featured on Mama Gab!

Hey guys!
Oatmeal Smiles got featured on Mama Gab's Pin it Party! This is my first time to be featured and I'm pretty excited! Can you tell?
This is not a recent picture at all.. BUT it shows my excitement!
Today I wrote about our current nap battles.. Ugh..

That's all I can say. One big, ginormous UGH!

Click here to read the post 10 Tips & Tricks for Nap Success.

I mean, when do you just give up on naps all together? It's worth the battle I know. But as you guys know, sleep is such a precious thing!

Many of us have been walking this new mommy road together and know the battles we've had.

Add to the nap battle some general two year old contrariness.


      Today C went to the store with daddy. She came back visibly elated.

      I asked, "Did you have fun at the store with daddy?"

      She said, "Yes.... No! No I did NOT have fun at the store."

Basically it's a game of constant contradictions. Anyone else? 

I'd love some lights of hope in this parenting tunnel! ;) 

Parents of older children, does this get better?

 Is it worth the battle?

What battles are you currently fighting that cause you frustration?

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