Friday, January 30, 2015

Playing and Growing and Family Time

Heidi is at that age where everyday it seems like there is something new going on. She recently discovered her feet. It is unfortunate that it is winter, because her feet are rarely uncovered. However, I have been making an effort to make sure she has some uncovered toes time because whenever her toes are free she just loves to grab them and play with them and chew on them. I think it's quite adorable (Chris thinks it's kind of weird). She can sit for several minutes at a time now, and pulls herself around to get to objects that are out of her reach. The other night at dinner she was doing this weird arm thing where she put her arms up in the air like she was excited? Or maybe playing Superman? Who knows.

Sophia is learning more with each passing day. It never ceases to amaze me just how sponge-like kids are. Everything we say and do is absorbed. And it always seems to come out one way or another. The other day she was pointing to herself while she was going potty and telling me where her butt was. I feel like honesty is probably the best policy here, so I discussed with her that her bottom (I always say bottom.. I'm not sure where she picked up "butt" from... probably Disney Junior. Thanks Disney.) is the other side, and the front side is the vagina. Well, now she goes around pointing and saying "this is my butt (pointing to back side), this is my gina (pointing to front side)". Sigh. I suppose it is a blessing to be blissfully ignorant of the social norms that dictate adult conversation. I'm sure the day will come all too fast when she will have that discretion, and I will miss the toddler innocence.

One of Sophia's favorite activities is having her nails painted (which we do probably at least once a week). She loves to have toes and fingers painted, and will pick different colors and will even sit still for a couple of coats if she decides she wants glitter on her nails. She also loves to make bracelets out of pony beads, and the other day she made one for me for my office (which I have hanging up in there) and she also made one for Emily, "because I love Emily" she said.

Sophia also really loves snuggling with her sister. She loves to have Heidi sit across her stomach, and just thinks it's the best when Heidi is playing with her nose and with her face. Too cute. On Sunday morning it was one of those times where I have memories from the opposite perspective. Let me elaborate. I remember getting up on Sunday mornings and we (Colleen, Meghan, and I) would go into our parents bedroom and crash any restful, peaceful morning moments that they had desired to have. We would all somehow squeeze onto the bed and watch news and wrestle or whatever before breakfast. This past Sunday, it was like that but this time I was the parent, it was MY bed that we were all squeezing in to. Heidi had woken up around 8:00 so I nursed her and then was playing with her for a little bit before Sophia woke up and jumped into the bed with us, and the goofballs were having a grand ol' time. Heidi was actually a little bit on the fussy side that morning before she heard Sophia's voice, and it was kind of neat to see the transformation in Heidi when her sister came into the room. She was excited to see her, and was enjoying the play time.

I feel like lately I have seen articles about things like "25 Things Empty Nesters Wish They Could Tell Young Parents" or "To the Parents of Toddlers", or my Dad recently said just how much he missed having all of us around. I know that I will probably be like most people, and years from now I will wonder where the time went, but I hope that while I am in these stages, even the days that are trying and tiresome, I will be able to look at my kids and be so joyful at the time that has been giving to me with them in these growing stages. I pray that I can impart a love for Christ in the short time that I have with them, and I hope that I am able to see each day as a gift.

Middle of the night

Poor Sophia has been ill.

Just a cold, I think, but it seems like a particularly nasty one. It really seemed to take a turn for the worse on Tuesday of this week. She was just really stuffy. She woke up 2 a.m. Tuesday morning, I think from coughing, and came into our room. I let her snuggle with us, after she turned back off the light in her bedroom, for about half an hour before carrying her back to her own bed. When I went to pick her up I noticed that she had actually changed her clothes, which may be why the bedroom light was turned on. She had changed into a dark purple shirt with ivory colored stars on it, with light purple pants with hot pink stars (her favorite shape is a star...and those match because they are both stars, right?). That morning she woke up fairly as usual and wore her star outfit :) Heidi managed to sleep through all of it.  That evening it took her about an hour and a half to eat her dinner (which she was DETERMINED to finish so she could have ice cream).

Wednesday when Chris picked her up from daycare Sherri mentioned that she seemed a little bit off since waking up from her nap. She didn't seem all that interested in dinner, even though we had Chipotle so she had rice, which she normally loves. She took a bite of rice, decided she didn't want to eat it so she tried to spit it out, but then she couldn't get it all out of her mouth so she started gagging until she threw up, and the poor thing was sick several times. 

The next day was my normal day off but last week I had picked up a shift so Chris was home with the girls. Sophia ate breakfast and lunch ok, but later she just laid on the couch all evening, barely moving, and speaking only to request that another TV show be put on. (She may want to stay sick longer because she was allowed to watch TV all evening last night, which just never happens). She fell asleep around 7:00 while I was getting Heidi bathed and ready for bed. She didn't touch dinner or any other food which would have worried me but she was drinking plenty of water. She drowsily aroused around 8:00, I changed her into pajamas and read two books and a Bible story before carrying her to bed. Poor girl just absolutely exhausted.

This morning I woke her up around 6:15, not sure if I needed to stay home from work or not, but she was chipper as could be, especially considering how early it was.  She has been a little on the tired side at daycare today but I'm hopeful she'll be bouncing back shortly!

It is so hard to not dwell and be overwhelmed with worry, even when it's something small. When I Googled her symptoms "meningitis" came up which made me slightly nervous. But thankfully, my fearful, worrisome self is not the one in control of my child's health. I can just pray for her healing and provide the best that I can in the meantime :)

The star outfit 

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Partner

I'm going to take some blog space to brag about what an awesome husband I have.

Last Sunday, I went to a yoga sculpt class at the gym in the evening. The class time went over the time that traditionally the girls have bath time, but I told Chris not to worry about bathing the girls.

I went to class and throughout the class was kind of making a list of things that I had to do when I got home. Laundry needed to be dried, dishes needed to be done, girls needed to be bathed (which for Heidi still includes a nightly lotion massage)... You know how it goes.

I came home to find both girls bathed and in pajamas, my laundry going through the drier, and the kitchen completely cleaned (and it was not just putting a few dishes in the dishwasher).

He is such a sweet and caring father for the girls. The next day, I picked up an additional shift at work (lots of winter illnesses) and because it was Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, Chris had the day off. He was able to stay home with the girls and had just a good time caring for them.

In addition to be a wonderful father, he is an amazing husband. He is very caring and helpful, and finds ways for us to do Bible-type studies together to help keep each other accountable, as well as helping with healthier eating and exercise plans.

This is on top of his workload. He is a supervisor at work, which means he does not just worry about his own work but oversees other projects and organizes other meetings as well. He is a deacon at church, and occasionally teaches Sunday School classes. He is currently in an APICs class (not sure if I spelled that right) which is a supply-chain certification that he is working on for work. He just recently passed the second out of five examinations required for the certification. In addition to that class, he is starting two classes at Seminary as well to continue his Master of Divinity degree at Bethel Seminary and is working towards becoming a chaplain in the military. He was recently endorsed by a third-party independent Baptist group (a requirement through the military for chaplaincy) and has been completing all kinds of paperwork - MEPS is hopefully coming up soon.

On top of all of this, he is also working on a certification to become a Biblical Counselor, which is quite the undertaking.

I am amazed at all that the is able to handle, and am so grateful to be blessed with a partner like Chris.


Adventures in Ikea

Chris and Sophia have had some daddy-daughter dates. Last night when I got home from work I had to run to the grocery store, but Chris wanted to go to Ikea to pick up some nightstands, which we desperately need and which I have searched Craigslist for with no luck. I suggested we divide and conquer. Heidi and I went to Costco and Byerly's, primarily to pick up yogurt because this family goes through yogurt like it is water, and Sophia and Daddy went to Ikea.

Of course, when you go to Ikea you don't really leave with just what you came for. Chris did come home with two lovely nightstands, but he also came back with a new package of bandaids for Doc Sophia as well as a half a pound of their by-the-pound Swedish candy. Apparently they had quite the blast shopping around there and even more fun picking out the candy and playing in the front area.

That night, I gave Sophia some of the candy for dessert and just handed her the bag. I was not aware that it was half a pound, nor was I aware that Chris had picked out some pieces for himself, and before we knew it the bag was gone (and Mommy was in trouble)!  The good and the bad news was that one of the nightstands was actually defective and had to be returned. The good part about this is that Chris was able to go back to Ikea for daddy-daughter date part II.  They were gone while Heidi and I went to have Heidi's 6 month pictures taken.

Daddy returned the nightstand and picked up a second one, and this time returned home also with a lamp and another package of bandaids, as well as a package of stamping markers (when questioned about the markers, the response was "Sophia insisted"). They also came back with more candy, of course. I think it is safe to say that there is just the tiniest bit of have Daddy wrapped around fingers here...


6 months!

Can you believe it? Heidi is 6 months old today. As I was driving to get her 6 month pictures taken, it was almost the exact time she entered the world (she came into the world at 10:42 a.m. and the pictures were at 11:00 a.m.) It is amazing to think that 6 months ago today I welcomed my second daughter into the world, with my husband by my side, and a merciful epidural in my back. I remember feeling scared because how could I love a second person as much as I loved Sophia? But those fears were subsided the minute I held my sweet little Heidi in my arms and was so overwhelmed with love for her that I could have cried.

6 months!!

She is such a sweet, sassy, personality-filled little girl. She loves to eat solid foods, so much so that she seems to get even frustrated by just breast milk. So far, she has had peas, beans, carrots, sweet potatoes, greek yogurt, peaches, pears, baby mum-mum banana rice rusk crackers and oatmeal (and flavored oatmeals).  At this point I have replaced morning feeding #2 (usually around 8 or 9 a.m.) with an entirely "solids" meal and have also replaced an evening feeding, at our dinner time, with a second solids meal. I am also occasionally giving her something light after lunch in the afternoon if she is still hungry. At dinner, because she eats when we are eating, she will try to feed herself because I am too slow feeding her in between bites of my own food.  When breast feeding, my left side must have a slower flow (it certainly produces less milk) than my right side and sometimes she will refuse to eat on that side. I learned from "Miss Sherri" (daycare) that she will not eat her bottle if she is facing in the direction to eat from my left side, which is just interesting because it wouldn't matter with a bottle.

She loves to sit up. Or be on her tummy. At her pictures today, she would not allow us to lay her on her back. As soon as she was on her back she started lifting her head up (like she was doing miniature crunches) and fussed until she was upright or on her tummy again. She does a great job with sitting up and can sit easily for minutes at a time. She also rolls with ease, and has started using rolling or pulling herself around to get to objects. I'm am sure she'll be crawling in no time; she has been ready to move since she was born.

She is also quite near teething. I can see the little white bumps under her gums and she has been gnawing on stuff nonstop. I have a teething necklace that she loves, but nothing as much as the Nuby soft silicone teether, which has just been the best thing ever (for both girls). Sometimes I think that is why she likes solid foods so much - she can chew on the spoon (but not on me)!!

She is also a chatterbox. Not always, but she'll get in chatty moods and will "talk" for quite a while. I am convinced I heard her say "mama" the other day. She also still loves sticking her tongue out and blowing raspberries. She discovered last night how fun it is to blow raspberries with food in her mouth. There were sweet potatoes everywhere.

Today during the pictures she again did not really smile. We got one half-smile. It's kinda funny... she was all smiley and happy before the pictures, and then during the pictures she just had this pensive little look, like she was trying to figure out this new environment and why these adults were acting so funny...and then after the pictures were over she was right back to smiley again. Sassy little girl.

Sophia can always make Heidi smile. Heidi just loves to watch what Sophia is up to, and more often than not it will make her giggle or smile. When she isn't smiling, you can almost see her thinking to herself "What is that girl up to?" It is so fun watching them interact and enjoy each other.

Half of a year has come and gone, and before I know it the weather will be warm and we'll be celebrating a first birthday.




Monday, January 12, 2015

Weekend fun

I absolutely love spending time with my girls. And they are just growing up so fast. This weekend I gave them a bath together for the first time. It's funny, I used to look forward to the time when I could do this but now that it's here, I'm wondering where the last 5 months have gone. 


Sophia really likes "taking care" of Heidi and is often asking if she can hold her. She loves being my helper. 


Sophia also discovered selfies this weekend.  I opened up my gallery on my phone and had about 100 pictures, mostly black or blurs or flooring, of the house. 


When Sophia wakes up from a nap she will typically fill her arms with as many fuzzy friends as she can carry as she marches out of her bedroom, and with her hair all messy from napping it's pretty much the cutest thing ever. I managed to get a couple pics this weekend of waking up from nap. 

She also continues to be a world-class chef and top physician. This weekend she cooked a variety of exciting dishes, like toast with ketchup, cooked in a saucepan.  She also has been bandaging  her own wounds, as well as ours. 


It was a good weekend for Copper the wonderdog too, our fur baby. He got a new dog bed and it didn't take him any time to adjust. The first picture is just him looking at himself in a mirror. Made me laugh.


Sometimes it's just "mundane" day-to-day living that I know I'll miss once my girls are older and want to remember.