Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Some say it better than I could

I love this quote...for a couple of reasons:

Here is a little mouth to kiss; here are two more feet to make music with their pattering about my nursery. Here is a soul to train for God, and the body in which it dwells is worth all it will cost, since it is abode of a kingly tenant. I may see less of friends, but I have gained one dearer than them all. Yes, my precious baby, you are welcome to your mother’s heart, welcome to her time, her strength, her health, to her most tender cares, to her life-long prayers! Oh how rich I am, how truly, how wondrously blest!

Elizabeth Prentiss

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Who's a Smartipants?

We're still cloth diapering over here. Previously, I was trying to do about half and half...half cloth and half disposable. I wanted to save some money, but I also didn't want to be doing too much extra laundry. It was working out nicely. I bought one box of 70 diapers (we get Up and Ups) to last us each month. I'm bothered that they've increased their diapers by about $6 though. When they first started that brand or whatever was $8.99...now they're $14.99. I try to use coupons when I can, so I can usually get them for a dollar or 2 cheaper. Anyway, evenstill, $14.99 a month isn't so bad for diapers. However, to be completely honest, we spend more than that because I use Huggies overnites ...1 per night...so a box lasts about 2 months. I guess it comes out closer to $25/month in diapers then.

With Matt laid off right now, I'm doing a lot more cloth. What a wonderful thing it is to have the cloth option so money can be used in other places. We use the Flips, which I still really like. I just wish I could get the stink completely out of the inserts. They're better after using some bleach. Maybe I need to bleach them again. I had also been using some Proraps with the Flip inserts. I love those covers! The velcro gets a bit annoying (sticking to things) at times, but those covers are all business! And, they're so cheap. We had been given some hand-me-down ones, but the biggest we had was medium. I'm going to try to pick up a large one with my swagbucks.

I decided to invest in a 3 pack of Smartipants, since I was relying pretty much on my 6 Flips, and they arrived this week. I'm really excited to try them. They are a 1 size system similar to the Flips. The main difference is they are pocket diapers, so I can't reuse the cover. They feel like they are made with very similar materials. I haven't used pocket diapers yet, but because the insert comes out in the wash all by itself...I'm willing to try them. They are snap diapers as well, and what's cool is, the flaps can overlap if you have a skinny baby. Not that I know anything about that...hehe. At first glance, they look like they'll do just fine. I'm just a little disappointed the colors are so pastel, and well, quite girly. I bought the boy pack, but the blue is really a light purple. Oh well. I'll let you know how those go.

I also ordered 3 additional homemade covers, one large, and 2 XL. I still have those big prefolds...so I'm hoping I can use the bigger covers with those. Those prefolds made Stevie's butt very large, haha, and he would leak out of the diapers because they were just too big for the covers I have. I splurged on these covers because they were 3 for $15 (it was a remnant sale)...and free shipping. I figured I couldn't beat that! If Stevie is too small for the XL, I'll save them. I really think at some point he'll outgrow the onesize diapers and covers...even though they grow with your baby, and these could be a good option at that point.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Dear Stephen

Your baby days are just slipping away. Because you're not quite walking yet (but you are getting so close), I'm able to hold onto some of that baby-ness a little longer. I'm going to miss those loud thumps of your big hands and legs as you crawl over these hardwoods. You really do resemble a bear or dinosaur when you crawl...in a cute, strong way. You've grown so much you don't fit as comfortably on me anymore when I put you over my shoulder in the rocking chair at bed time. I still cherish that you snuggle right in...though with a bit more adjustment due to your tall body. One night a couple of weeks ago, you laid your head on my shoulder, we rocked, and you started doing your kiss sound (lips and tongue smack). I delayed your bed time that night as we "kissed" back and forth for several minutes. You melt my heart little boy! And that curly head of yours, I could just kiss up all the time.

I just went in to turn down your nap music and peeked in on you. I love how you snuggle your beloved lion during naps. You almost always have one arm around him as you snooze on your belly. You've even snuggled that penguin a time or two. I'm finding them tossed out of your crib less and less. They are becoming more like buddies rather than toys.

You are quickly moving on to new things. A month ago, "tricks" were all the rage. You had seen Grandpa do his ball trick (where he pretends to throw a ball in front of him, but he really tosses it behind his back) at your birthday party. You laughed and laughed. A couple of weeks later, I realized just how much you understood. You picked up your ball and put it behind your head...laughing and laughing, looking at me. Sometimes you'll do it with 2 balls one in each hand. Other times, you'll put that one ball behind your head and switch hands. When Grandpa's around, we can be sure ball tricks will happen. Yes, you just might have a career with the Harlem Globetrotters some day!

You just never cease to crack me up. You enjoy playing with the brooms in the dining room. You've started this new thing I call "swimming." You lay flat on your stomach on the floor with your hands out front. Then you push yourself across the entire room backwards with your hands. I'm thankful that we don't have to have the fancy toys to entertain you! I'm sure once you get those words together you'll be a chatter box! You jabber all day long, and it makes your dad and I giggle when you ask questions. You talk and end your "sentence" with clear question inflection. Daddy and I are starting to run again, and you come with us in the jogging stroller. You think it's the best. Daddy usually pushes, and sometimes I'll run up next to you. You melt my heart again as you give me a grand smile and say, "Hiii!" and jabber on. You started pointing a month or so ago, but you point with pincer fingers, your thumb and index finger pinched together. So now, you often talk about what you're pointing to.

Your coordination is amazing me these days. You can put your little car on the ramp bump perfectly. You put your farm animals in the silo even though it requires some maneuvering and changing of positions to make them fit. You love to turn the pages in the books when we read. Sometimes, since you're still gaining the skills, you get frustrated. We're working on patience and good attitudes. And sometimes, we just need a break from hard work!

Bubbles are the new thing in our house. I'm going to end up cross eyed and out of breath with all the bubble blowing I do around here. You like me to blow bubbles over and over. Then you find something new to play with for a second...just until you notice I've stopped with the bubbles, and then you want me to start all over. I guess that awareness starts early (like when my dad would fall asleep with a game on tv and I'd change the channel...he'd immediately be awake and want it back). During one of those moments, we created a new "Minute to Win It" challenge. I try to get the bubbles to go through your little basketball hoop. I love how we have so much fun together.

Everyday is a new adventure. I try to make it "relaxed" fun...basically not planned fun. We've been discovering butterflies and toads and caterpillars in our yard. We enjoy toys, we enjoy cleaning (usually), we enjoy reading, we enjoy God's creation, and most of all, we enjoy each other. I'm so thankful I'm able to spend these days with you, Stevie. It's a dream come true. I love you so much!

Love and a kiss,

Friday, August 6, 2010

Reunion 2010

Just a few pictures of our time. None of them were taken by me because we forgot our camera! You can tell in some of them that Stevie wasn't quite up to his best yet. Hopefully, next year, he'll be his healthy and happy self all week. (And of course, Stevie hasn't been sick in months...so it had to be that week.)

Chrissy's photography of Stevie and Noah in his wagon pulled by Bethany:

Then my dad got a couple of Stevie playing in our tent:

My Grandma with just some of her great grandchildren:

Some of my cousins (yup, all 1st cousins) and their spouses:

This was Stevie and Noah last year:

Thursday, August 5, 2010

We're back

We've been away on a family vacation for our family reunion, and this week is VBS at church. It's been a busy couple of weeks, and I'll fill you in on a few things.

A few days before we left on "vacation," Matt was laid off. I'm only putting this on here to ask for your prayer. It honestly makes me nervous having just moved into our home, and we are a 1-income family. But, we know that God works for the good of those who love Him. We just don't know what He has next for us yet.

We've all been thrown for a loop a bit...it's been nice having Matt around so much more, but at the same time it's not always relaxed. We have some worries, and he's busy applying to and looking for jobs. He's really working hard.

The reunion was fun as always, and I was able to enjoy it more not just having had a baby 3 weeks earlier. My dad is one of 10 kids. 8 made it...and their kids...and their kids. Anytime we're able to be with my cousins is a blast. Stevie exceeded my expectations while we were there. I was nervous about the car ride because his previous history riding in cars has been less than stellar. He started crying and screaming any time we'd go somewhere more than 5 minutes away, and especially if it was anywhere near nap time. He did really well for the 9/10 hours out and 9/10 hours back. There were a few times of crying but nothing outrageous. He really needs to start walking though because he couldn't stretch out during our stretch breaks. He doesn't like to crawl in the grass...and so...he was pretty much held outside the car. He even did ok coming back into the car if snacks or meals were visible. The 9 or 10 hours were way better than 14 1/2 last year...trying to nurse and all that deal in the car and on a butt area that just wasn't going to heal...among some other nasty complications. Yeah, too much information. We also stayed in a tent the entire week...Saturday to Saturday. I was honestly nervous about that too, haha. Stevie doesn't nap well unless he is home. That's all there is to it. He cries and cries at my parents', and if he doesn't get naps, well, it's not pretty. He adjusted wonderfully. He had his own room in our tent with his pack and play. There were only a couple of times the whole trip he cried when we put him down, and it was literally only for seconds. His naps and nights were shorter than usual...which showed by the end of the week, but all in all, I vote him camper of the week. I commented to Matt a few days into our trip that because he was doing so well and adjusting beautifully, I was able to really enjoy our time there to the fullest. Then Wednesday came. Wednesday night, Stevie had the highest fever of his little life, about 103 something (102.7 under arm). Nothing was helping that little boy feel better that night. But thankfully, the fever only lasted the night (which he slept through), and he seemed to be ok by morning...just a little tired and cranky with a smaller appetite the next couple of days. One of my little cousins looked like she had fifths disease...so Stevie may or may not have gotten that. He only had what might have been a rash for part of an afternoon...and I think, since it didn't last all day, it was probably just from his Daddy wrestling him and leaving him with "scruff scratches" from not shaving. Who knows? I was just so thankful his fever went down, and he was pretty much back to normal. He conked out the moment we pulled out of the campgrounds. He's happy to be home...and I'm doubly happy and thankful Matt has been available to take him home early from VBS to try to get some morning naps in. He definitely fits the category of a "scheduled" boy...a well rested boy = a happy boy...the opposite also applies.

Anyway, that's where I was...and where I wish I still was.