Friday, September 29, 2006

Fun day

Jordan running in the Fox Trot. He had the most laps of the first grade-29. Way to go, Jordan!!

Claire walking in the Fox Trot

Today was the fund raiser for Black Fox Elementary School. The kids get pledges and run for the school. It was really fun. Jordan came in first for the first grade with 29 laps. Claire did well with 14 considering I found out this afternoon that she has strep throat. Nice. Anyway, the last picture I wasn't going to post, but this was the second time since yesterday that I found Luke putting on my lipstick. I thought I had put it out of his reach, but obviously I didn't. At least he knows where the lipstick goes! Lovely. I hope everyone has a great weekend.

Oh, Lukey.

Thursday, September 28, 2006


We had the first normal night of sleep since Luke has been born!!!!! Well, not really since he has been born, but some days that is what it feels like. He went to sleep at 7:20 and didn't get up till 6:15 or so. Praise the Lord! Sometimes we have to do something hard (letting him cry "Mommy") to produce something really good (sleeping all night on his own). Thanks to any of you who have been praying about this for us. It sure makes things easier.

On a sad note, my dad's friend Anne Tonelson, who he has been in lots of plays with, died yesterday from pancreatic cancer. Please pray for her family (husband Joel, daughter and son Julia and Daniel) as they deal with losing her. I know my dad would really appreciate it.

Hope everyone has a good day.

Friday, September 22, 2006


Well, it's Friday. I would say that I am excited about sleeping in tomorrow, but I haven't done that in about 6 1/2 years. Luke is now going to bed on his own, but he is still waking up in the middle of the night. Actually, last night it wasn't even midnight when he woke up. I could have cried. I was so tired. So, tonight starts the process of letting him learn to get himself back to sleep on his own. How? Well, I am going to have to let him cry.

I am not excited about it, but I know it is for the best. I know that he is not sick, hungry, hurt or anything else. He just wants me. And while any other time I would love that, it is affecting my ability to have patience during the day, and I hate that. I am not being the mom I want to be because of the lack of sleep. So now it is affecting the whole family. I know that once he is on a routine and sleeping better that everything will feel normal and peaceful and good again. Not that it has been bad. In the whole scheme of things, this really isn't that bad of a problem. I am pretty lucky in that regard.

I hope everyone has a great weekend. Wish me luck...and sleep!

Monday, September 18, 2006

60 years later...

Yesterday we celebrated my grandparents' 60th wedding anniversary. We had a big reception for them at the Madison Arts Center. It was so much fun. T here were a lot of people there. I felt so blessed after watching my grandparents all day. Their friends were arriving with canes, walkers and other "helps", and my grandparents don't have to use any of that. They are in excellent health for being almost 80 and they still travel and do things that a lot of people their age can't do. Actually, my mom's mom is the same way. I am so blessed to have my grandparents in such good health.

They have had such a blessed marriage. There have been a lot of ups and downs, but they have always been faithful to God and each other. They have been such a great example to me in how to have a good marriage. I lived next door to them until I was a senior in high school, so I am very close to them. I love the fact that my kids now love to go to their house and love to be with them. I have a picture of their front porch that sits in my living room. Their front porch is my favorite place on earth. When we go there, we spend most of our time just sitting there on the swings watching the kids play. It is home to me.

Marriage is such a special gift from God. I feel so incredibly blessed to have the marriage I have. I have an amazing husband. I hope you are as blessed as I, not just in marriage, but in life. I lose count everyday when I think of all the blessings in my life. Love you all.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Better night, sort of

Wow, not so many suggestions at once!!! Just kidding. I guess everyone has the same sleep struggles at one time or another. I found out yesterday that Luke doesn't have another ear infection. He is just used to being rocked to sleep. And actually, I wouldn't mind doing that if he would then let me lay him down. But even when he is asleep when I lay him down, he wakes up as soon as his head hits the pillow.

Anyway, last night, I let him cry and I didn't have to do it very long. The first time, I went back to his room after five minutes and the second time, I was on the phone for about 10 minutes and when I got off and was going to check on him, he was already asleep. He woke up once during the night, but I went and stood by his bed for about five minutes and he was back asleep. Then today for his nap, I read to him and then told him it was time for nap, put him in his bed and turned his music on, patted him on the back for a couple of minutes, and he was out. I think we are on the way to better sleep for all of us. By the way, the cd I play is one that my dad made called "Luke's Lullabies". It has a lot of special songs on it that mean a lot to me. He loves his grandkids so much. Thanks Dad!

The funny things is, while Luke slept much better, Claire was up for about two hours coughing with one of her allergy attacks. Nice. So we still didn't get a good nights sleep. My friend told me today that when stuff happens to her like that, she tells herself that she must be really strong for God to give her something like that to handle, since He never gives us more than we can bear. I must be really strong! Just kidding. Anyway, I hope everyone has a great day. Here's to better sleeping!

Tuesday, September 12, 2006


Does anyone have any tried and true methods to get your baby to sleep? He has been going to bed later and later, only by my rocking him, and then he wakes up in the middle of the night screaming. I will rock him back to sleep and as soon as I lay him down, he is screaming. We were up for about three hours last night and I am exhausted. I would love to hear what everyone's routines are. We definitely need one! Thanks.

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Surprise date night

Stephen and I are taking a parenting class at church called Growing Kids God's Way. We took it two years ago and it really helped our family, so we decided to go through it again. Anyway, during the class, you have date nights where all the couples in the class have a potluck dinner. On the schedule it was supposed to be last night, but we missed the second week of class when they announced that it was actually next Friday.

So, we already had a babysitter at home so we decided to have a date anyway. It was probably the best date we had had in a long time. We didn't have anything already planned, so we just went to Jason's Deli and ate dinner. We sat outside and just talked, took our time eating, talked some more. It was so nice. Sometimes we forget that we still know how to talk to each other, even when we aren't talking about work, the kids, etc.

We found out this week that a couple who has become some of our good friends is separated. They are going to counseling and are very hopeful that things will work out, but it is still scary. It is so easy for Satan to slip in and make you think that everything is okay and that you don't really need to spend time together. You don't really need to make an effort in your marriage; everything will take care of itself. Well, it won't.

I am so thankful for my marriage. Stephen and I entered into our marriage knowing that it would not be easy and that it would take lots of work. Both of our parents are divorced and we knew that the odds were against us. So we look at everything differently, I think, than if our parents were still married. We know that things don't always work out like you plan. That having been said, I am blown away sometimes that God brought us together. We still love each other so much after ten years together. We love being together, talking, laughing, being with our family. We truly are best friends and I can't imaging my life with out him. I am just so thankful that after all this time we still love and like each other. It is truly a blessing.

Take some time today and tell your spouse how much they mean to you and how much you love them and are thankful for them. It won't be a waste of time and I know they will appreciate it. Never take for granted that you will always have each other. Take time to work on your marriage and make it everything God intented it to be and wants it to be. Also take a minute to pray for our friends and others you know who are going through trouble in their relationship. It will mean so much to them.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Kids really do like routine.

This week I was trying something new for our mornings. My grandmother showed me an article in this weekends paper that was about getting ready for school and making the mornings run more smoothly. It had some checklists of things to do the night before, in the morning, and right after school to make sure everything got done. I took a few of those suggestions and have been trying them out.

The main things that have helped us are (1)Laying the clothes out the night before so they are ready to be put on as soon as the kids get up. (2)The kids have to make their bed and put their pajamas away before they leave their room. (3) They aren't allowed to turn the TV on until they are completely ready. (4) They have to eat their breakfast at the table, not in the living room with the TV on. This one may seem like a no-brainer to most of you, but we eat a lot of our breakfasts in the living room, not very well I might add.

Anyway, the reason I know that kids really like routine is because Tuesday and Wednesday went great. There was no fighting, no yelling, we left on time and had a very pleasant morning. This morning, however, didn't go anything like the other two. Luke and Claire both woke up at 4:00 a.m. Luke got in the bed with me and Stephen laid down with Claire. Needless to say we didn't get a whole lot of sleep after that. I hadn't laid the clothes out the night before. I hadn't straightened up the house so it was clean when we woke up, it was just not a good morning. They got in bed late because of church, but that is a whole other issue that I won't go into today.

I guess the whole reason I am sharing all of this is to say that it is really worth the effort on the parents' end to keep everything organized, clean, on schedule, etc. Setting them up for success instead of failure for all you Growing Kids fans. Kids thrive on boundaries, routines, knowing what to expect. It just makes them feel at peace. There. That is my wisdom for today. Sorry it was so long, but I wasn't sure how to explain everything. Luke and I are going to have a better day from here on out. Lydia Class starts back today. I am excited about that. I hope everyone has a great day!

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

I gotta know...

Are there ever times when you just know that you are in the will of God? I had one of those moments today. It was so awesome. I had been going back and forth about teaching preschool again. I didn't really want to, because I really didn't want to put Luke in yet at only 15 months. But they desperately need teachers and I thought it could really help us out financially.

This keeps coming up and I keep telling God that I really don't want to work right now, but if He wants me to help get us in a better situation financially, then I will. Well, I have been keeping a little girl named Madelyn over the summer on Tuesday and Thursday. Now that preschool is starting, I will have her on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. I thought that I may could teach preschool on some of those days and take both Luke and Madelyn or work on the days where I just have Luke, to make the extra money we need to pay off our bills. Anyway, while I was trying to figure out our budget to see if we really NEEDED me to work at Sonshine School, I called Madelyn's mom and talked to her. We hadn't decided on my pay for three days a week and I was trying to figure that part of our budget.

Well, long story longer, not only do I not have to do Sonshine School again, but she is paying me more than I was expecting. It is allowing us to pay extra on just about every debt we have, increase our giving, pay a bill that we were just letting slide (I can't believe I just admitted that to the whole world!) and still have, for us, quite a large amount left over at the end of the month. I am just blown away at God's faithfulness to me. There are things in my life that I wonder about whether or not I am in His will, but this is the one area that I never question. Everytime I consider working, He consistently provides more than we need so that I can stay home with the kids. I am not saying that I think every mom should stay home or anything like that. I have some very dear friends that have the opposite situation from us; he stays home and she works and it works great for them. I also have several friends who work part time.

My point is this: I know that they are all doing what God wants them to do, and He blesses them daily. I know that I am in God's will because He continually confirms this to me and I am so thankful. I know that if you are questioning what God's will is, if you ask Him, He will show you if you are seeking Him with all your heart. (And if what you are asking aligns with His word. He will never lead you to do something that is contrary to His word.) Anyway, I was just so humbled and amazed today that I wanted to share my experience. I hope that in some small way, I may have blessed your day.

Monday, September 04, 2006

Happy Labor Day!

We have had a pretty busy Labor Day. First, we went to my grandparents' house. They live in Joelton in the house they have lived in since my dad was in the second grade. It is next to the house I grew up in. I love going there. I have a picture that sits in my living room of their front porch. It is my favorite place on earth. I can just go there and relax and think about nothing. It is home for me.

Then we went to visit my mom. She is in a rehab hospital after having double knee replacement. She will be there until Thursday and then will have outpatient rehab for about five more weeks. She is doing very well, though.

After that, our Bible study group got together for some burgers at our friends' house. It was so fun. I had been wanting to take a picture of all our kids and we were all there tonight. I also took a picture of our babies. The were born within about five weeks of each other. Luke and Knox were first three days apart, and then Zach and Cooper were three days apart five weeks later. So fun! I love our group so much. We have been together going on three years now and we all love each other so much. We have gotten very close and know that we can count on each other for anything. I don't know what I would do without them! Enjoy the pictures.