Tuesday, April 28, 2015

9 months!

I am about 4 days late, but better late than never!

Heidi Olivia Pitts is now 9 months old. Just like with every month that passes by, it is hard to believe just how big she is and just how much time has gone by.

My nickname for her continues to be "Sassy-Pants". As my Pastor described with his younger daughter, I feel the same way about Heidi: She has more personality in her than a baby should be allowed to have. And she does - she is spunky and smart and just so alive.

Heidi also likes her schedules. She likes to eat when she's hungry, and sleep when she's tired. She doesn't sleep in the car, she doesn't put off eating. It is just funny. I remember with Sophia even when she was this age she would nap for hours. I could do errands and the whole time she wouldn't wake up - she even slept in the bottom of a cart one time because I took her out while she was sleeping. But not Heidi. Every time I go back to get her out of her carseat, she looks up at me and has just a huge, beautiful grin on her face, happy as a clam to see me. Even when she is absolutely quiet and still in the car, and I will think she has fallen asleep, she is usually wide awake just taking in all of her surroundings. Her new favorite thing this past month is to pull the sunshade on her carseat down over her head and all the way down to her toes. Without fail, almost as soon as I put her in the car and sit down myself in the car I hear *ca-chunk ca-chunk* as she moves the little screen down. I wouldn't mind so much but then if the sun does happen to be behind me when I'm driving, I can't do anything about the sun getting in her little eyes!

She is becoming much more vocal with time, especially over the last couple of weeks. I have video of her just going "ba ba ba bwa bwa ba bwa ma ma ma ma da ga ppphhhhtttt" over and over and over again. Her little voice will change inflection too, as she is so clearly mimicking our conversation and speech patterns. I love listening to it.

As with probably most little sisters, she is starting to share in big sister's interests, which is both fun and not fun Sophia, kind of depending on the day and mood. But Sophia is really such a sweet and caring big sister that even when she doesn't feel like sharing, she will play with something for a couple of minutes and then put it in Heidi's lap and say "your turn!" even if just for a little while. And Heidi loves to play with her dolls! The other day she grabbed a doll, and was kissing it and hugging it and playing with it how she sees Sophia play with it.

She has also become quite feisty about having her diaper changed. Now that she's crawling and grooving all over the place, she does NOT like to sit still, even if it is to have her bottom cleaned. It's funny too - she is so smart that she will tell me when she has a poopy diaper by crawling over to me and grabbing me to let me know. She will be persistent if I don't catch on right away, so I can almost always tell if it's diaper vs. something else bothering her. But as soon as I go to change her, she fights getting changed because I have to interrupt her play time! She'd rather crawl around with her little naked bottom, thank you very much.

One of her new skills is drinking from a sippy cup. We've been working on it for a little while, but she's really beginning to get a good grasp of it. She's getting better about drinking from it and keeping it in her mouth and swallowing it, which is nice, because now there are less soaking shirts to change :) As far as eating goes, she is doing all those table foods now that we are doing. She loves chicken, and other meats. I made turkey meatballs the other day and she just chowed down on those, I was pretty surprised. She also loves fruits, especially banana. Eggs are a new favorite as well. She has eaten just about everything honey (she even liked peanut butter!!). The only thing I have tried with her so far that she does not like is shredded cheese, which is so strange. I don't know if maybe it's a texture thing, because she will eat cheese sticks, or maybe it's just cheddar cheese? When we were at Costco sampling food the other day they were sampling out those Red Lobster cheddar biscuits that they have, and Heidi did not like it. Odd that she would dislike cheddar and not other cheeses though, isn't it?

Heidi and Sophia had matching pink ballerina sparkly dresses for Easter. Heidi did NOT like hers, because it interfered with her crawling. She got so frustrated crawling in it because it kept getting stuck under her knees that at one point she sat up and balled up her little fists and just GRUNTED in frustration!

As with each passing month, the interaction between the two girls continues to grow. The other day when I was making dinner they actually played together in the living room for a good half an hour or so, which is really quite a long time. Heidi is, I think, quite adept at picking up on Sophia's moods and will laugh with her, or will even seem to comfort her when she is crying. They love to play together at the dinner table too, which makes for an entertaining (but slow... totally worth it...) meal time.

She is trying to walk as well, and slowly improving her balance skills. She is now transferring between two objects, so she'll stand up on something and then turn around and kind of move before grabbing the next object. I'm thinking she might even have walking down before the end of this month.

I am suspicious that there are two new teeth that may be thinking about cutting through her gums, because lately she has been biting on just about everything she can get her hands on. She even got into my purse the other day, because she knew her little chew giraffe toy was in there, and reached in and grabbed her toy, and just saw gnawing away at it.

Loving my little baby girl, and looking forward to the remaining time God gives me to be her mama! Truly, what a gift children are to parents.

Sunday, April 26, 2015

First Date

Sophia and Daddy went on her first date last night.

They went to see "Home", a movie about aliens invading Earth, and eventually they want to destroy it but it gets saved... you know the plot. But Sophia absolutely had a blast. She spent time packing a purse and getting all ready for her date.

They went to the Inver Grove Heights theater near church, which is Chris' favorite, and which was recently updated with those giant chairs that recline and are quite comfortable.

How fun it is to see things through the eyes of a child. Chris was telling me that she was constantly drinking from her cup, like every 10 seconds, and then taking a bite of popcorn in between, because she just liked being in the big chair with the cup holder.

She also ate half a bag of movie popcorn (and didn't get a stomach ache)!

Daddy spent some time preparing Sophia for what she could expect during the movie, because she has never gone to one before. He explained to her things like we don't move from our seats, and we be quiet during the movie, etc.  At one point during the movie, the audience started laughing at a scene and Sophia sat up straight in her chair, looked down the row, and said "SHHH!!" to the person a couple of chairs down! Then Daddy had to explain that we don't shush other people... ;)

Before they left for the movie I asked Chris to make sure that she went to the bathroom before the movie... There will never be a day that I am allowed to forget the time that I went to see Snow White in theaters with my Mom and Aunt Lynne. My Mom was nursing Colleen at the time, and at the end of the movie I told them that I had to go potty and because Mom was nursing, Aunt Lynne had to take me and she missed the kiss. Never will I be able to forget that. So, I reminded him to take her before the movie.

And he did.

But during the movie, the one who had to go to the bathroom was Chris. He leaned over to tell Sophia and she said "But I don't have to go potty!" and he explained that he did.

A blog post or two ago I wrote that Sophia is going through a phase where she is calling us Mother and Father, and asking us our names, and she is fascinated by the last name concept. Well...

While they were in the bathroom, Sophia said to Chris "What's your name?" and "Are you my Father?" which, imagine hearing those things coming from a child's voice in a public restroom, are potentially scary things to hear. I laughed hard enough to just about pee my pants when he was telling me about it.






Monday, April 20, 2015

The Mundane No Longer Exists

Prior to having children, life was simple. I didn't realize exactly how simple it was. Or, maybe it's not so much that it was simple, but that it was complex in a different way. I really had only my schedule to worry about though, and occasionally my husband's. As soon as a baby enters the picture, that life changes dramatically.  Here's an example of a schedule for me, pre- and post-baby. We will make the assumption that it is a day I did not have school or work, just house chores.

Pre-Baby:

To Do List: Laundry, grocery shopping

Wake up around 7:30 or 8:00 a.m. Take my time getting up, make some tea, have a nice breakfast, start a load of laundry before heading to the grocery store. Go to grocery store. Return home, put away groceries, continue laundry. Maybe exercise and then start to fold and put away laundry before dinner in the evening.

Post-Baby(ies):

To Do List: Laundry, grocery shopping

Get woken up around 7:00 a.m. Generally, by a toddler crawling into bed with me, kissing me, and saying "Mommy I want Marshmallow cereal".  Prepare cereal, yogurt with berries (this is a specific request generally). Second child wakes up around 7:30 needing to be breastfed and then have a breakfast of solids. 8:00 a.m. eat my own breakfast.

8:30 change children into clothing. Realize that their laundry bin is overflowing as it is incredibly challenging to find clothes that match for either child, though I think the toddler prefers it this way as she has developed her own sense of style. Try to find every piece of dirty clothing and put it in the hamper before transferring it to the laundry room to start a load of laundry.

9:00 still trying to get dressed. The baby doesn't want to get dressed. The dog is trying to eat mushed banana off of the baby's pajamas. The toddler is upset that her arm is stuck awkwardly in her shirt and she needs help NOW.  Start putting the toddler's hair into pony tails (2, by request). However, she has decided she wants her hair like "Big Anna" (two braids). While trying to do hair like "Big Anna's", toddler is moving around and jumping up and down trying to play with her baby sister, which results in her hair being inadvertently pulled and some more crying.

9:30 two children dressed. Get first load of laundry in. Realize I don't have clean jeans. Guess it's a yoga pants day.  Ready to go to the store, realize baby needs to breastfeed again before leaving for the grocery store or I will have one hour of shopping time (this part is improving with advancing age of the infant).

10:00 feed baby.

10:30 When done feeding, again try to gather the troops to go to the store. Put the load of laundry into the dryer if I remember. Usually I don't. Can't find Toddler's specific shoes that she would like to wear.

11:00 found shoes, shoes are on, jackets on, ready to go to the store. Toddler would like a snack.

11:15 have snack, in car, ready to go to store.

Arrive home sometime for a late lunch, around 1:00 after shopping at two stores (if I am lucky). Forget to check clothes and try to get lunch made. Lunch is made, to the specific instructions of the toddler, and a sandwich is picked at. She requests dessert. Discuss when we do and don't eat dessert, and that all lunch needs to be eaten regardless.

1:30 Nap time. Except the baby refuses to sleep, and the toddler doesn't feel like napping. Coax the toddler into a nap, let the baby crawl around while putting the first (or second, if it has been a productive day) of laundry into the washer.

I think you get the idea.

So my to-do list on Thursday this week was: Get an oil change. Which sounds like a small To-Do list but it is made immensely more exciting by the presence of smaller people with me.

The day started with breakfast, and then while getting dressed for the day Sophia started dancing around in her underwear playing with the pajamas she had just taken off.  I had decided to pack a "picnic" lunch and bring it along with for the day because I was hoping we could pop by the zoo for some fun after the oil change. We left the house around 9:00 a.m. and I exercised before my oil change appointment at 11:30 a.m. We get to the oil change place, the Honda dealership, and there is a bucket of flowers which Sophia is excited to see. We then head to the kiddos play area and the girls are just having a blast playing with the toys and dancing and having fun with her dress popping up when she stands over an air vent and talking to the fish in a fish tank they have, etc.

Of course, I had told Sophia that we might go to the zoo and she was all excited and asked if we could have a picnic (SO glad I packed one ahead of time!!). I didn't anticipate that the oil change would take over two hours and we wouldn't get out of there until almost 2... which is well into naptime. Heidi had started to fuss when we were at the dealership because her schedule is less flexible than Sophia's, and around 1:20 she fell asleep in my arms. I managed to keep her asleep in my arms through gathering our belongings and signing paperwork and all of that, and even through getting her in her carseat (though this is not a credit to me so much as it is a sign of how tired she was). I was thinking it would probably be prudent to skip the zoo as we hadn't had lunch yet and were likely to be entering into "grump" zone, but could hardly back out now because Sophia was so greatly looking forward to a zoo trip.

To the Zoo we went, and we had a "picnic" while we were there at the Family farm eating our little lunches. The family farm has a lot of babies in the spring, so we had a blast seeing piglets, a calf, some chicks, baby goats (kids. ha), and lambs. As an aside, I was watching the mama pig feed her babies and I just felt so sympathetic. Prior to kids I would have seen a mommy feeding babies. Now I find myself thinking "Oh that poor pig. 12 babies suckling at once". And those piglets are vigorous. They were all hoofing and biting and pulling and yanking all at the same time! Ouch! Thank you God for single births. Or at least less than 12 at a time. I hope she doesn't get mastitis. The sheep was a little territorial, and when Sophia was close to the fence near the lamb she started bleating and running towards Sophia. Yikes. This time around, Sophia actually fed the goats which was new, normally she kind of runs away from them. Heidi had a blast looking at the baby animals too; the ones that fascinated her the most were the chicks - if there had not been a grate in the way I think she would have liked to grab and play with one. Then we went on home for a late nap time before dinner.

We met with Oma at the MOA for dinner, because it is Ladies' night on Thursday (Chris has class) and that's just what we do. We had dinner at Tucci Bennuch, and the girls made the dinner fun for most of the restaurant. Sophia spent most of her dinner time trying to making Heidi laugh, and Heidi spent most of her dinner time laughing at Sophia. The two of them are quite the pair. We had more than one compliment from people in the restaurant about how cute/sweet they were, and one older gentleman there with his wife said that he thought they should have paid us for the entertainment.

Reflecting back on the day, it is amazing to me to think just how different my day would have looked without kids. Get up on my time, exercise, oil change, home for lunch, chores or other type of project, Mall for dinner. But so much was added to my day by the presence of my girls; previously mundane things were made fun. I had a blast sitting at the dealership waiting for my oil to be changed - it's just amazing. I hope that I never forget to enjoy my girls, and I make it a goal to try to do so every day. It's hard, and I am a selfish being and sometimes get upset that I can't make my schedule work the way I want it to, but I am so grateful that my schedule ISN'T how I want it because it means I am spending time with my girls as they are, interruptions welcome.

Romans 14:5-9: One person esteems one day as better than another, while another esteems all days alike. Each one should be fully convinced in his own mind. The one who observes the day, observes it in honor of the Lord. The one who eats, eats in honor of the Lord since he gives thanks to God, while the one who abstains, abstains in honor of the Lord and gives thanks to God. For none of us lives to himself, and none of us dies to himself. If we live, we live to the Lord, and if we die, we die to the Lord. So then, whether we live or whether we die, we are the Lord's. For to this end Christ died and lived again, that he might be Lord both of the dead and of then living.

Monday, April 13, 2015

An Adult Conversation?

Each passing day Sophia's conversation becomes more and more adult like. Lately, she has been asking a lot of relational questions and trying to figure out names for people.  She is curious about who Papa's mommy and daddy are, and who Mommy's sister is, and those types of things.  Her latest interest is, for some reason, using formal language. "Oma, you are my grandma" and "Daddy, your name is Chris but I call you Daddy" have been common phrases around the house for the past couple of weeks. She has recently discovered the terms "Mother" and "Father".  "Mommy, you are my mother" and "Daddy, you are my father" have been said a lot. She is also learning what "daughter" means and has often said "Daddy is my daughter" which is pretty cute.

Last night at dinner she was talking about our names ("Mommy, your name is Katie") when she asked what Nana's name was. I told her, "Nana's name is Kris, it sounds like Daddy's name" and she just looked at me like I was nuts. She looked back at Chris, then at myself, then at Chris, and said "Mommy is very very wrong" (actually, it sounded more like "berry, berry wrong"). Apparently, Nana and Daddy couldn't possibly have the same name. That is just silly.

Sophia is also a painfully (p-a-i-n-f-u-l-l-y) slow eater. I think she just has too much fun playing with food and humoring Heidi at dinner time to eat, so usually we are done eating and I have the kitchen cleaned up and have started Heidi's bath, and she is still eating. Last night was no different. She had eventually decided she was done eating. About an hour and a half later, she looks at me and says "Mom! I forgot dessert!" to which I replied, "You didn't forget dessert; you never ate your dinner! You have to eat dinner before you can have dessert" and she just stopped what she was doing and ran crying into my bedroom to see Chris (who was already in bed). I heard muffled voices but couldn't really tell what was being said, then this cute little pig-tailed girl comes out of the bedroom and says:

Sophia: Mommy, I want to talk to you.

Me: Okay, honey. What would you like to talk about?

Sophia: Mommy, you said that I can't have dessert because I didn't eat dinner.

Me: Yes, I did say that.

Sophia: Well, I want to eat my dinner so I can have dessert.

Me: You can eat your dinner. I will reheat it for you.

I just about died. She's not even three and she just sounded so adult; it was too precious. I went back into the room and asked Chris what he had said to her, and apparently he told her to come tell me that she loved me and that was it. He hadn't even put her up to it. Wow.


And as for little Heidi, she is gaining awareness of her surroundings more an more each day. I was in nursery in church yesterday morning and Heidi was playing along happily on the outside of an exersaucer. Clayton, a little boy about a year older than Heidi, had fallen and was crying, so I had picked him up to comfort him. Immediately, Heidi STOPPED what she was doing, crying, and crawled her little self over to me to stop me from snuggling a different kid. I could almost hear her saying "That's MY Mom!!".

She's pulling herself up on everything now, and will let go and play the balance game. She likes to see if she can do it while holding other objects too.  She has also stood up and walked behind the little dolly push-stroller that we have. I can't believe how fast she's trying to grow up!  And poor Copper, his food and water bowls have become a center of interest for Heidi; I spend a lot of time trying to keep her away from them. Thankfully Copper is a quick eater!


On a separate but related note, Pastor has started going through a sermon series in Proverbs, and at this stage in my parenting, the timing could not be better. Here's looking forward to learning about the wisdom God has for us in the Proverbs!!

Friday, April 10, 2015

The Saga Continues

I feel that it is time to document some of this :)

For those of you who know Chris well, much of this is old news.

Christopher, for as long as I have known him, has been interested in becoming a chaplain for the military. He loves Christ, he loves the military, he has a passion for both and it just seems like a great way to bring the two worlds together.

Initially when he started seminary, which was several years ago now but was put on a brief pause, he tried to move ahead with chaplaincy. It's quite the process. Because the military is government and not really an appropriate authority to be saying whether or not somebody is meeting a certain religious standard, chaplains need to be endorsed by a third party endorsing agency. This agency backs a candidate to the military, and once they are endorsed then they can move ahead with the military side of things.

This was where we got stuck several years ago in the process.  Finding an endorsing agency is like finding a church, only even more complicated. Much like a church member should read and agree (and adhere to) a statement of faith for the church, it is the same with an endorsing agency. So, if you don't agree with the statement of faith, you (obviously) can't go with that agency. It was surprisingly challenging to find agencies. Chris had passed the MEPS exam but then we ran into this roadblock.

Fast forward to now. Well, we'll fast forward to about 8 months ago. I believe it was around the time Heidi was born that a military chaplain came to speak at our church. He was endorsed by an agency that we could agree with scripturally, something that we had previously had a hard time finding. Yay! So Chris re-opened the doors to pursuing military chaplaincy. His passion for combining these two worlds has never subsided, and in fact has probaby only grown more intense. He had kind of decided to switch his degree program from the M.Div. to the MATS, just to finish it up, but the military does require an M.Div. degree so he started the work on that again. This presented somewhat of a challenge because since the time that Chris started attending Bethel Seminary and now they have switched over from doing classes on a quarterly basis to now being on a semester schedule. I can only imagine the nightmare for the degree planners. So he had to get all of that straightened out and get a course schedule worked out now for the M.Div. That, and we aren't taking out more debt for school so we are paying for classes up front (woohoo! Praise the Lord for having the resources to be able to do this).

So this has been in the making now for several months. Chris applied for endorsement through the endorsing agency, which was a several month process in and of itself.  Chris finds himself as the experiemental group a couple of times, because not only was he right in the middle of the Bethel schedule switch, but the military was also asking endorsing agencies to change how they endorse candidates because it was taking too long, so he is kind of a guinea pig for this short form of endorsing too. BUT, on Christmas Eve (Merry Christmas to us!), he was endorsed by the agency. Down the road, he'll have to do a longer form of endorsement with in-person interviews, statements of faith (his own), and he will have to be ordained.

Now that he had the endorsement, the next little hurdle was the military. He had to pass MEPS again. Chris has this thing called "White Coat Syndrome" which is basically what it sounds like - being nervous at the doctor's office.  He has worked really hard over this last year to get himself back into great health; he is lifting at the gym regularly, as well as doing cardio, and our diets have become much healthier. He lost over 30 pounds in the past  year and has really made a change for the healthier. Yay for buying smaller clothes - a great problem to have! So he went in for the MEPS exam and his blood pressure was too high. He recently had it checked at a general physical late in 2014 and it showed in the normal range, so really we weren't concerned about it (that, and he is in much better physical condition now than he was at his last check). They told him to go out and get two readings in the normal range and send them into the MEPS.  The problem is that every time he went to get it taken it was high, because he was nervous. He even purchased a blood pressure monitor to have at home so he could check it at home, and it was almost always normal. It is unfortunate that the military does not accept those readings.  Long story short, high reading after high reading, Chris went the extra mile and went to a cardiologist, who had him (Chris) wear a 24 hour monitor and do some blood testing.  The test results came back normal, and the physician sent a letter to the recruiter explaining that Chris had normal results and he had no concerns.

Now it's the waiting game. The results had to go back to the guys in charge at the MEPS to see if it would be approved. So far, the process this time around started in September and it is now April 10th. The waiting game is hard, but all that matters is that God is in control of the situation, the timing, the process, and what happens will happen when He determines it will.

Yesterday evening, Chris got an e-mail from his recruiter stating that his physical is completed and approved by the MEPS!! I was so happy! I still am so happy for Chris! It can be hard to enjoy the moment when it is all a series of hurdles, the next one seemingly bigger than the previous one, but this is an answer that we have been waiting for for SO long!

To celebrate, I made dark chocolate marshmallow pecan salted caramel brownines (so he could celebrate by gaining back all of that weight that he lost, I guess!). I'll try to periodically document along the way about how things are going, but hopefully this means he can start shadowing and get some more in-depth experience.

If nothing more, along this journey Chris has decided to look into becoming a certified Biblical counselor. We are learning along the way and gaining Biblical knowledge, which is something never wasted. God is moving, even if we can't always see how, and I eagerly anticipate his coming movements!

The Easter Post

I LOVE Easter. I truly do. It is, for Christians, and really for all of humanity, the single most significant event that occurred and it is appropriate to celebrate it. I think we fall quite short, actually, of celebrating how significant it is. 

There's your "CME" Christians that show up for church in a nice outfit on Easter because that's what is always done. There's the people who take their kids to get pictures with creepy creepy rabbits and go to city egg hunts and put up egg and bunny decorations everywhere.

That's not our house.

I'm not OPPOSED, per se, to the Easter Bunny. He is just not going to be prominent in my house. The "Easter Bunny" does not bring my children their Easter baskets. The Easter Bunny does not leave egg trails. (Why does a bunny leave eggs, anyway?) And most importantly, I am not going to take my children to get pictures with a giant rabbit (I mean really, have you ever seen an Easter Bunny costume that wasn't creepy?).

No, Easter baskets are filled by Mommy and Daddy. Easter baskets are gifts that we use to mark the special occasion for the day; much like we open presents on Christmas to celebrate Christ's birthday, we open presents on Easter to celebrate the day that Christ freed us all from our fallen state. Really, it should be a bigger deal than it is.

Yes, now that I have all of that rant out of the way, I'll talk about my cute kids and our Easter day.

Good Friday service in the evening was fun. We did not have church nursery that night so the girls sat with us, and really did a pretty good job. Sophia really enjoyed the singing during the service.

We woke up on Saturday morning and started the morning out watching the Arsenal game and having a very big breakfast of banana chocolate chip pancakes, bacon, hashbrowns, toast, and coffee (even Sophia had coffee... don't worry, I make decaf). We had planned on going to our local favorite pub for the Arsenal game, but the game started at 6:45 which is really quite a difficult time to try to get kids up. We then spent the rest of Saturday morning dyeing eggs, which Sophia thought was just so much fun, and making "bird nests". If you have little ones, this is a great idea. A coworker of mine gave it to me and I just love it. You take mini donuts, spread frosting on them (I used cream cheese frosting dyed green so it looked like "grass") and then top them with egg-shaped candy (whoppers, mini Cadbury eggs) to be the eggs in the nest. Normally I make a rice-krispie treat type dessert and shape it like a nest filled with eggs, but this was much easier for Sophia to participate in, and much more fun. Frosting everywhere. And I think she ate approximately 1 whopper egg for every 3-4 that she put on the "nests". 

Chris' grandparents flew into town for the weekend, which is always great fun. They spent some time with the girls later in the morning (while Chris and I went on a "gym date" together) and then we went shopping with them in the afternoon as well.  They unfortunately had to leave early on Sunday so we didn't actually spend time with them on Easter (the downside to Non-Revving).

Sunday morning the girls woke up to Tutu Easter baskets. When I looked through my holiday decorations tub I found only 6 plastic eggs. I have no idea where the rest went. And since I did not look through the tub until about 11 p.m. on Saturday night, that is all the eggs that were filled. I filled one with cheerios for Heidi to play with in the morning, and then filled the rest with candy for Sophia and hid them throughout her kitchen.  We read through the story of Christ's resurrection prior to opening baskets. I was trying to impress the gravity of what Christ had done on Sophia's mind so after reading I would ask some questions, which she usually answered with "Jesus", and then when I told her about the significance of Christ rising she looked at me and said "Present time!!"  So, it's a work in progress ;)

Of course, one of the most fun things about Easter with little girls is the Easter dresses! Yay! I ordered adorable "pink ballerina" sparkly tutu fluffy-type matching dresses for the girls and they were just to die for. She had to go to the bathroom in her dress that morning, and was sitting on the potty holding her dress much like a bride holds her gown when she has to go to the restroom, and it cracked me up. She was also singing, which was even cuter.

When we were driving to church Sophia requested to not go to nursery, but said she wanted to sit in the sanctuary with us.  There is children's church which technically starts at age 3, but since she's only a month away from that we decided to let her give it a try. Plus, on Easter Sunday Miss Sherri was teaching, and she is comfortable with her. So, she sat with us during the singing part of worship and then joined Miss Sherri and the other 3-7 year old kiddos for children's church. Wow. My baby, going to children's church! Just strange. She apparently enjoyed herself.

And of course, the aftermath of Easter is just as much fun, for a couple of reasons. Christ is STILL RISEN FROM THE DEAD! He lives! He conquered death and now my sins are forgiven. MY SINS ARE FORGIVEN. I don't think we pause enough to think about that truth. Every bad deed I do, the terrible thoughts that I have, my short-tempered outbursts, it is all forgiven because of Christ.  Second, Sophia has had jelly beans for breakfast every day now since Sunday. Also, have you ever had carrot cake M&Ms??  If you haven't, I suggest picking some up if you can find them in the stores. It's worth it. And of course, Hard-Boiled eggs. I always forget just how much I love these. Heidi and Sophia both love them too. I think half of the fun for Sophia is, naturally, taking the shell off. Heidi just went crazy over them, and I initially gave one to her forgetting that egg whites are not recommended until she is a year old, but she did just fine with them!

Happy Easter. He is Risen! Yes, He is Risen, Indeed!