Thursday, October 29, 2009

Hello from Bristol, Va

We are slowly but surely making our way home. I will be so thankful to sleep in my own bed tonight. I desperately miss my pillow, why on earth didn't I bring it with me. We've had a great trip. I'm so glad we tagged along with Ryan this time. We've had wonderful family time.

I do have a prayer request to share for Ryan's dad. He's having surgery this morning on his foot. He's having a skin graft done on the top of his foot ((ouch!! that doesn't sound like fun does it??)). He had a farm accident awhile ago and his foot just hasn't healed. So please pray that this surgery brings his foot healing. Pray that it will heal quickly and that there will be no infection.

Hopefully I'll update with some pictures of our trip tomorrow sometime. I can't wait to get home...there's another house that just came on the market today that we can't wait to see :)

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Nate Turns 4

Yikes...there's only an hour and 8 minutes left of Nathan's birthday. I almost didn't get this post up in time and really it doesn't include the pictures I want. I'm working on limited computer resources down here in Alabama! But I just had to wish one of my favorite boys ever a HAPPY BIRTHDAY! Christian got to talk to his "best friend" on the phone tonight (thankfully Nathan didn't mention that he was actually in the middle of a birthday party that we were missing...oh there would have been tears if Christian knew that). Anyway Nathan was very excited about a new dinosaur, and a Handy Manny toolbox and a few other grand things. Christian was just excited to talk to Nate which is suprising since Christian is NOT a phone person.
I tried to come up with a few pictures of Nathan as a baby and this is what I found. That's Nate in Emma's arms all the way on the right.

And this picture was taken at the hospital (where else would you find purple chairs) just two hours after Nathan was born. Emma was so excited to hold her new brother! She was born to be a big sister. She does it so well and Nathan is so blessed to have her!
Dear Nate,
It's hard for me to not cry thinking about your sweet face and that strawberry birthmark on your forehead that's now faded and your stunning brown eyes. I miss you terribly and I love you so, so much! You are such a cuddler. I loved it when you moved closer because I finally had someone to cuddle everyday. My favorite memories of you were when I would lay you down for your nap everyday and I would pray for you and rub your back and most of the time you would fall asleep as I prayed. Such sweet times. I am so thankful for those days I got to share with you and all the delight you brought my life! You have a special place in Uncle Ry's heart too. I think you might win the award for most nicknames. Uncle Ryan is still coming up with new ones for you. And remember when you used to like to pull ears as your comfort thing when you were a baby?? I think Uncle Ry secretly really liked that. He would always sit next to you and lean his head over so you could reach his ear. And Christian absolutely says your his BEST FRIEND and I think McKenna might think you're another big brother for her. She loves you too!! We can't wait to see you. I'm glad you're feeling better now so we can come see you soon!!
Love you bunches!!
Happy Birthday!
Love, Uncle Ry, Auntie Judy, Chrish and Kenna

Monday, October 26, 2009

Hey Y'all

Can y'all tell I'm in Alabama?? Just so you know the southern accent is alive and well down here!! It still catches me by surprise every time someone opens their mouth :) I'm just not used to it y'all.
Anyway, we're having a great time. We've discovered two very fun playgrounds. The drive down wasn't too bad, although that new Leapster game would have been a lot more exciting if I had actually remembered Christian's Leapster. And the indoor pool and hot tub would be a lot more fun if I had remembered my bathing suit. But other than that, we're having fun!
Ryan's working today, so we went to Walmart and a park. The park was amazing. We saw a bunch of snapping turtles in a pond and tons of geese. I think McKenna would have hugged one if I hadn't stopped her. I thought the things will run away from her, but I think it was more than willing to be the recipient on one of McKenna's hugs. I also went to Sonic for the first time. Oh my word, we need those up North!!! I would love to have a drive-in where you can get a grilled cheese (Christian loves grilled cheese) and a grilled chicken sandwich on a whole wheat bun (I know you can get one a McDonalds, but it's not nearly as good).

So that's the scoop. Nothing too exciting! I'll post some pictures sometime if I have a chance. Right now McKenna is taking a nap and I'm desperately trying to keep Christian from waking her up. That boy is so noisy!

Friday, October 23, 2009

Road Trip

We've talked about it for years.
It's never worked out...
until now!
We're hitting the road this weekend to travel with Ryan for work.
I am dying to get out of here.
Out of this townhouse.
Away from the constant "house buying" thoughts.
Away from this yucky, rainy weather.
Away from our schedule and laundry and dishes.
It probably won't be much of a vacation.
It definitely won't be for Ryan.
But there will be five nights in a hotel where I don't have to make my own bed.
And there will be five free breakfasts already made for me by those sweet people at Hampton Inn.
And there will be an indoor pool :)
And I won't be cooking or cleaning or hurrying everyone to put on their shoes so we can get to preschool on time.
Okay, okay...
we will be dealing with lots of driving and inevitable meltdowns
BUT I'm prepared!!
New Leapster Game - Check!!
Lots of treats to eat - Check!!
Juice Boxes - Check!!
New DVDs for the car - Check!!
2 new car games Christian has never seen - Check!!
Lots of spare binkies- Check!!
"blankie" - Check!!

Sweet Home Alabama - Here we Come!

P.S. I have no idea if I'll have time for blogging or not! I hope so! The laptops coming with me :)

P.P.S. Don't you just love Reese Witherspoon in that movie??!! She is so adorable and we were born on exactly the same day of the same year. Ugh... she definitely ages better than I do.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Happy, Happy Fall!!

We have been loving this 70 degree weather! Much to Christian's delight we've spent as much time outside as possible. We were at the park the other night while the sun was setting and it was beautiful!

I cannot even tell you how many pictures I have of Christian with a stick in front of his face. Boys!!

McKenna wants to do everything Christian does these days.

Christian is my outdoor boy! He loves trees and walnuts and sticks and mud :)

And this was not staged! They really are becoming very sweet friends.

McKenna was chasing after Christian all night wanting to hold his hand.

Fall makes me Happy!! And so does special time with my kiddos!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

A Rabbit Trail of Thoughts...

You see, I love Diet Coke. Like really love it!
Definitely too much, but I drink the caffeine free kind so that helps... right?
So I joined the Coke Rewards program because I might as well get something in return for all the D. Coke I drink.

And the Coke Rewards program lets you earn Omaha Steak gift cards! Yummo! We are totally hooked on Omaha Steaks to go along with our Diet Coke addiction. Ryan's sister sent him Omaha Steaks a few years ago for his birthday and we've been ordering ever since (Just every once in when we have giftcards :). It's not cheap, but not super expensive either. Just create an account and they'll start sending you all these emails about their promotions. We usually get a packaged deal the comes with hot dogs, steak, chicken, baked potatoes, and dessert. Is your mouth watering yet??

And that's how we got dry ice!!!! The Omaha Steaks stuff comes in a cooler packed with dry ice! And it is so exciting for Christian (and me too...the stuff is rather fascinating).
You win if you said "dry ice."

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Hair Help!!

McKenna is such a cutie. She loves shoes and purses and is such a girly girl. But she has some issues... issues. She looks like this about 80% of the time.

She will not keep any kind of hair clip or pony tail in her hair. I've had lots of people tell me to use those tiny little rubber I've done that and she ends up ripping out huge chunks of hair. It's awful and then she crys and I feel bad that I put it in her hair in the first place.

Her hair really looks cute when it's pulled back and I really want it to grow out. I love her without bangs, but is it worth it? We're getting so close to the point where it's long enough that she'll be able to tuck it behind her ear (like she'll ever do that).

Look how cute that face is right after a bath!!
So what do I do???? Should I just get some bangs cut?? Should I continue to try to let it grow out and just let her look messy in the meantime???
Seriously, I want to know what you would do!!
Ryan and I are divided!!
He asks me when we're going to cut it everyday.
I constantly go back and forth about it!
So leave a comment or vote on the sidebar.

Monday, October 19, 2009

I'm so excited...And I just can't hide it

I feel like I have so much to say about this sweet boy of mine and I just don't even know where to begin...but I want to get it out, because I want to remember this day. I want to remember this boy. I want to remember the ways God is working in his life. I want to remember how the Lord humbled me and clearly said to this weary mommy heart of mine that He's got it under control.

I've shared several times before about how Christian is my "difficult" child. I'm not saying that to be mean or embarrass him one day, I'm just being real. Just sharing the truth of our everyday lives. Christian is never know what's going to set him off or what kind of mood he's going to wake up in. Most of the time he wears me out. He challenges me constantly and his daddy too. He makes me work hard :) which is good because motherhood is not for the faint of heart. His behavior keeps me humble and discipline is very frequent in our home (and I hate that, but it's true). So I pray and pray and discipline and pray and talk and talk and admonish and teach and pray and cry and yell (remember I'm just keeping it real) and pray and teach and discipline and....I wonder if it ever does any good.

And then there was today.

We were eating lunch and I started talking about how much fun it's going to be when Christian is in Kindergarten because he'll get to stay there all day and eat lunch with his friends. And Christian's lower lip began to quiver and the next thing I knew he was sobbing in my arms telling me how much he loved me and needed me and how he wants to eat lunch with me everyday FOREVER :) And I know that might not sound like a big deal to some of you but it was so refreshing to see that hard little boy melt in my arms.


And then later Christian and McKenna were watching Caillou's Christmas because McKenna is obsessed with Caillou and we've seen every single other episode of Caillou about 30 times so we were watching his Christmas movie. I was sitting in the kitchen working on some stuff and Christian came in and said "Mommy is Santa for real?"

~Warning this is controversial~

And I said, "No sweetie. You know that Santa was a real person a long time ago but that we just pretend Santa at Christmas." (Yes, I know...we're like the only people in the whole world who don't do Santa with our kids...but that's another blog post).

And Christian starts crying and I'm worried that maybe he's crying because he wants Santa to be real. And I'm feeling like the worst mom in the world for ruining my child's Christmas even though we've always told Christian that Santa is pretend. When I asked him why that made him sad he said; "I was just hoping Santa was real because then the poor kids would all get toys for Christmas, but since mommies and daddies pretend to be Santa they won't get toys because their mommies and daddies don't have any money."

And I was shocked. He was crying for the poor boys and girls because he was worried that they weren't going to get toys for Christmas? Really? Thank you Jesus...he does listen to me sometimes. The "poor box" as he calls it, that we've been filling for months now for Operation Christmas Child has been teaching him to think of others. He usually puts his happy meal toys in there and he always wants to buy the "poor kids" stuff at the store, but I didn't really know that he actually cared about them. So we had this wonderful discussion about how the Bible tells us that it's our responsibility (not Santa's) to take care of the poor children and then we talked about different ways that we could do that and he felt much better and is so excited to pack our Operation Christmas Child boxes!! I can't wait either!


And lastly...this is what I never want to forget!!! I was hanging up some stuff in Christian's room (I'll have to post a cute...yes, I've finally decided to hang up some stuff on the walls of this townhouse...anyway...) So I was hanging something up and I messed up because I didn't have a level and I have no idea where our level is and I was getting frustrated. And I heard Christian whispering over in the corner by his train table and I thought I heard him say "amen." So I asked him what he was saying and he told me he was too "shy" to tell me. So I asked him if he was praying and he said "yes." And after talking about it for a minute he told me that he actually prays all the time. Of course I was skeptical and I asked him when the last time was that he prayed other than right then and he told me that he just prayed in the shower.

OH MY WORD!!! Here I am struggling so much with him just begging the Holy Spirit to work on him and my prayers actually are being heard. I mean of course I know that God hears my prayers, but for so long I've felt like they weren't really making a difference. But God is working on his little heart, drawing him to him. Christian has a real, honest to goodness relationship with Jesus, which I think is so profound and exciting for a four year old. I had some suspicions back in the summer when Christian asked Jesus into his heart on his own, but I didn't really know that Christian prayed to Jesus on a regular basis, but tonight he told me a whole list of things he's prayed about, like his booboo finger yesterday. Ohhhhh....I'm so excited!!!!!

So back to the you want to know what he prayed over there in the corner? He asked Jesus to help me with my project because PopPop wasn't there to help me, and he didn't know how to help me, but he knew Jesus could help me :) And for the record, I did get it done.

I'm kind -of tempted to get up right now and do a little happy dance!!! :) That's how excited I am about the day we just had. Okay, so he did get disciplined for poking McKenna in the back of the head over and over while she was trying to watch TV. And I do believe I had to address a disrespectful voice several times. And he did tell me that the lunch I fixed him was disgusting ...but really it was a great day. I love that boy with every fiber of my being and I know the God has great plans for him! I think the Lord let me hear that little "amen" tonight just so this JOY could rise up in my heart.
And Christian, my precious first born son. Someday you're probably going to read this and I want you to know not only how much Daddy and I love you, but you have a Heavenly Father who loves you more than I could ever imagine! I know that he wants to do incredible things in and through you. I know that you are just clay in the hands of the Potter right now, but you are a masterpiece in the making and I am so thankful that I got a glimpse of the masterpiece today. I am so honored to be your mommy! I wish you could eat lunch with me everyday...FOREVER...because I love talking to you. I love knowing what your little mind is thinking. I love you! You are God's perfect gift to me!

Can you guess....???

what Christian was playing with??

Sunday, October 18, 2009

PJ Buddies

Hi Nicholas! This is for you! We miss you buddy!

The House...that we're not going to buy

So here it is...the house that we almost bought. We love it, we really do. But after lots of back and forth we've decided to walk away from this one for several reasons (mainly because the seller was not really willing to negotiate and we really want to get a great deal). We know that someone else will probably snatch it up quickly, but we're okay with that. So the WAIT continues. Thanks for praying us through this one. So many of you have continued to ask us and check in with us about this whole house thing and that has been so encouraging.
I'm doing this Bible study on Esther right now and the main thing I've gleaned from it so far is that we do not understand the mind of God. We do not know his plans, but he is always working. He is always doing something and if we work at listening to Him our lives can be used to glorify him. So maybe we're staying in this townhouse a bit longer just to teach me patience :) Maybe it's so I can reach out to a new neighbor who is hurting in a very deep and real way. Maybe the price on that house is going to drop and God is just protecting us from paying too much for it. Maybe God has the perfect house in mind for us that has trees in the yard (I hate it that there's not one tree in this neighborhood). So I'll keep you posted.

Friday, October 16, 2009

And we countered....

and now we're waiting! Are you getting tired of all these house posts yet? Maybe this will all be over by Monday....or maybe it won't be over until March. Who knows!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

They Countered...

with almost their full asking price. Hmmm....but we know that they had TWO other offers and they countered ours and let the other two go because they were both contingent on the sale of homes. But here's the deal...we are not about to pay the full asking price or close to it in this market. Because I have a feeling that two months from now that house is going to be worth even less than it is now. What to do?? What to do??? We'll be countering again tomorrow, but I have a feeling it's all going to fall apart. Or maybe not.

Bottom line...if it's meant to be, God will work it out!!!

We made an offer :)

After almost a week of intense debate we made an offer on a house. We love, love, love the house. It's more than we ever imagined we could buy and would just be perfect for our family. It's got a bedroom on the first floor which is probably my favorite feature of this house. It would be the perfect playroom. It's also in a neighborhood on almost half an acre. I don't love the neighborhood aspect of it but for various reasons we've decided not to pursue building a house at this point. So we've narrowed our search to existing homes and this is the best deal we've seen so far.
So we made a written offer last night. Now if you know Ryan and I you know that our number one priority is getting a good deal. We do not want to be upside down in something six months from now. So even though the asking price was low we offered them significantly less. What we have on our side is the fact that our offer isn't contingent on anything (we've already sold our house). We can close on the house whenever they want to. So today we feel cautiously optimistic. We haven't heard anything yet and we didn't expect to. We think they'll make a counter offer, but they might not (our bid might have been too low). We will NOT be disappointed if we don't get this house. Both Ryan and I feel complete peace that it's out of our hands and that God knows where he wants us to live.

But I will tell you that all day I've been thinking about what color to paint this room and wondering what I'm going to put in it since I don't have a dining room table. I'm sure Christian will have some sort of fort or train track constructed in there in no time and that sounds just about perfect to me.

Dreaming about paint color in this room too :)

Wednesday, October 14, 2009


McKenna just said "Abby" for the first time while sitting at the computer looking at Abby's picture from her birthday post. She's said stuff that sounds like "Abby" before, but this is the first time I've heard it in the context that she was purposefully actually talking about Abby. So cute! I think she misses her because she smiles so big whenever she sees a picture of Abby.

A How To Guide For: Swimming in the FALL

Step 1: Find one silly boy!

Step 2: Find a buddy willing to do it with you!

Step 3: Assess the situation

Step 4: JUMP with all your might!

Step 5: Swim, swim, swim!

Step 6: Repeat until your coat, shirt, socks, shoes and pants are full of hay!