"When you called me to be a Mama, You didn't ask for perfection. But that with every breath, I'd point them to You."

Friday, February 25, 2011

Funny Things My Kid Says -- Volume 1

Starting a "series" to make sure I document everything my kids say. Right now it's obviously all Jaden... won't be long and I will get to start adding in Brandon commentary as well ;)

"My blankie is WET! Put it in the dreyer! Put it in the dreyer right now PLEASE!"

"I'm not going to poop in my bed tonight!" -- followed the next morning by -- "I didn't poop in my bed!" (this is a major accomplisment every single morning now according to Jaden since we had a really bad fiasco of poop in the bed last week) ;)

"I love you veeeerry verrrry much!"

"Oooooo look at my shirt!!!" (He's quite into "fashion" these days) ;)

"Hurry up, Daddy!!" (He's also getting quite bossy).

"My dinky hurts!" (This came out of nowhere last night, and we have not been able to figure out why the heck he said it). ;)

"I wanna watch the Bucs on the computer! I wanna go there! I wanna give the Bucs a high-five!"

"I wanna give TC a hug, a kiss, a high five and knuckles!"

Every time we have to change his diaper... "Don't take my sockies off!!"

Me or Cody: "Did you poop??"
Jaden: "No - Brandon did."
(He's always blaming his younger brother) ;)

And to wrap up this entry... here's one not-so-funny... but rather sweet from prayer time recently...

"I wanna see Heaven. I'd like to see God. I'd like to go there."

Sunday, February 20, 2011

My New Love

I had to share... I have a new love. I didn't think it would be right to keep this discovery to myself.

For my birthday, my parents got me a candle. A "WoodWick" candle. I don't know why it took me two months to actually light the thing, but I finally did for the first time last week, and I am truly in love. WoodWick candles use real wood as the wick... so when the candle is burning, it not only smells really good... but it also sounds like a real fireplace crackling along.
And the one above is really awesome because it's called "Autumn Sunset" -- and it truly does smell like autumn. It smells like cozy fireside, cuddling on a Sunday afternoon, leaves burning outside. It smells exactly like my favorite season.

I will never again buy a candle that isn't a WoodWick candle. If you're a candle lover... or even if you're not... you have to check these out. Since I just recently discovered how much I love them, I haven't done a lot of searching for them around town -- but I do know that the Hallmark store in College Square Mall carries an assortment of them. And -- you can visit their website for a wide vareity of different products that they offer. And of course -- they change their scents every season.

I know what I'll be asking for when my birthday comes around again. Or heck... I'll even accept one on Mother's Day... or... Christmas... ;) (Hint hint, Mom and Dad -- you can buy gift certificates on their website)! ;)

Here's their website - enjoy your shopping :)

WoodWick Candles

Wednesday, February 16, 2011


I heard a song for the first time today on the long drive back from Des Moines. The lyrics hit home so I wanted to share. It's written from a man's perspective... but you get the idea ;)

*Got a baby girl sleeping in my bedroom
And her momma laughing in my arms
There's the sound of rain on the rooftop
And the game's about to start
I don't really know how I got here
But I'm so glad that I did
And it's crazy to think that one little thing
Could have changed all of this
Maybe it didn't turn out like I planned
Maybe that's why I'm such a lucky man

Like the girl that I loved in high school
Who said she could do better
Or the college I wanted to go to - till I got that letter
All the fights and the tears and the heartache
I thought I'd never get through
And the moment I almost gave up -
All led me here to you
I didn't understand it way back when
But sittin' here right now - it all makes perfect sense

Every stoplight I didn't make
Every chance I did or I didn't take
All the nights I went too far
All the girls that broke my heart
All the doors that I had to close
All the things I knew but I didn't know
Thank God for all I missed
Cause it led me here to this

I cried when my momma passed away
And now I got an angel
Looking out for me today
So nothing's a mistake...

Cuz it led me here to this...

(By Darius Rucker) ;)

Monday, February 14, 2011

Quick Update

Brandon's ninth tooth is about to pop. We can clearly see its white tip coming up, and he's had a lot of swelling, but the tooth hasn't completely popped through the skin yet. It's been bothering him a little bit the last day or two - lots of chewing on his fingers and a lack of appetite. He woke up screaming as if he was being tortured at around 11:00 last night... we gave him some Tylenol and he slept the rest of the night.

Jaden is now saying "sorry" all on his own quite frequently. If he can see that we are frustrated with something he's done - or doesn't do - he has been coming over to me all on his own, resting his head down on my shoulder - and saying, "Sorry, Mama." So sweet, so cute and so grown up.

Brandon has stood without support quite a few times now. He doesn't do it on purpose, and once he realizes that he's doing it, he usually gets really excited with himself and then sits down immediately. ;)

We are two weeks away from introducing Brandon to milk - no more buying formula - no more bottles. I'm pretty excited. No more washing bottles - no more bottles drying on my kitchen counter - no more dirty bottles taking up my sink. Kind of sad though, too... can't believe he's reached that point!

We switched Brandon to a "big boy" car seat this weekend and said goodbye to his infant seat. He HATED being put in his infant seat... and he was finally to the point where he was too long for it. His little feet and legs hung off it so we decided to make the switch a little early. He now sits in a regular car seat FACE FORWARD. Technically you're supposed to wait until they are a year old and weigh 20 pounds before you let them sit forward instead of backwards... but he weighs 22 pounds and is two weeks away from his first birthday. Close enough. And he is much happier sitting face forward.

Brandon hasn't been real good at taking two naps a day for quite some time now -- which is a big adjustment for us. Jaden took two good naps a day until he was 18 months old. Brandon is usually ready for his nap between 11:00/11:30 and then can sleep until 1:30/2:00. It's horrible timing because he misses lunch a lot and then has to eat a later lunch... which screws up his appetite for supper... but after trying for quite a while to keep him awake until early afternoon... I've given up. It's also a rough routine since he normally is awake by 2:00... he is then incredibly tired by 6:30/7:00. This also makes supper time rough. But oh well... I know it's a phase, and it will pass and hopefully as he gets a little older we will have an easier time making him wait until after lunch to put him down for nap.

Jaden continues to fight potty training. Our new daycare lady is awesome at attempting almost every hour to put him on the potty... and we try at home... but we are not succeeding at all. I don't understand it, and Cody and I are getting pretty frustrated. He is showing absolutely no desire to learn, and he hates having to interrupt play time to sit on the potty. I keep getting assurances from our doctor and from other people we know who have had the same issue -- that I don't need to stress over it. He will not graduate high school in a diaper. Still... I'm ready to have one less kid to buy diapers for!

Brandon is still not sleeping through the night. Jaden didn't sleep through the night until he was a year old. And Brandon hasn't had much of an opportunity to try lately with all of the sickness, ear infections and teething he constantly goes through. The ENT doctor in Iowa City told us he thinks that Brandon might sleep much better after he gets tubes put in March 11. He said even when the ear isn't infected, there could be fluid in his ear quite frequently that bothers him during the night when he's laying flat. I also haven't had the opportunity to make him "cry it out" either. How do you make a kid with an ear infection - or a kid with a cold - or a kid who is teething badly - "cry it out?" That would just be cruel.

A big event for us this past week was switching daycares. I won't go into all of the reasons as to why we switched... but we are glad we did it. Our kids are doing great at their new in-home daycare, and we are paying half the price of what we used to pay. I actually think it was the toughest decision I've had to make yet on my journey of parenthood because we'd been going to the same place since Jaden was a baby... almost three years. Daycare can be such a huge stress for parents but it can also be a great blessing for the kids if you find the right one. I'm glad we made the decision that we made, and I also think it was a prayer answered for us financially. It's amazing the ways in which God provides!

That's about it for us. We are loving the "warmer" temps, and I just got an email from my Scentsy sales lady. I'm super excited to order all of my spring and summer "scents" for my Scentsy pot... I'm going to force myself to wait about a month though. Especially since there's snow in the forecast again for this upcoming weekend. Can't wait for our first walk, first visit to the park, first steak on the grill and the first smell of freshly cut grass! I'm hoping Brandon starts walking soon so by the time we can be playing outside, he can run around with Jaden instead of trying to crawl everywhere!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Pray for Kate

Talk about being humbled. My last entry I complained about sick kids. Today I am thanking God that all I had to complain about was snow removal, ear infections and coughs. Many of you have probably already heard about this sweet little girl facing the battle of a lifetime... but in case you haven't... I wanted to share. The more people that hear this story... the more people that pray for this child and her family... the better.

Visit her website, visit the blog that has been receiving entries and visits since the summer of 2009. Say a prayer. Say 1,000 prayers. Then hug your kids tight and feel thankful.


Tuesday, February 8, 2011

I don't have a punching bag... so I'm writing this blog.

"They say God doesn't give you more than you can take - I just wish He didn't trust me so much."

That has been on repeat in my head for the last week. We have been put through a lot since last Monday morning. And every day I have said -- well -- tomorrow has to be a better day... and then I'm proven wrong. So today -- I'm saying it again. Tomorrow has to be better. Heck, even tonight has to be better than last night.

I'm writing this entry because... well... for one thing, I haven't updated the blog in a while. And secondly... misery loves company. And I know that there are other mommies out there who read this. So this is written for you to remember that on your bad days - or even your bad weeks - that you are not alone. Heck, you could even bookmark this entry for you to come back to and read on the days that you want to pull your hair out. I've been pulling my hair out for a couple of days now. Brandon has literally been pulling some of my hair our the last few days. So -- you are not alone.

It started with the forecast last Monday. Blizzard warnings were issued, my incredibly busy work schedule got thrown out the window with the wind, and Jaden started coughing. I think when it starts snowing, I need to ban myself from Facebook. Because almost every status update I read is from teachers or students excited they'll get some days off -- or from people who can't wait to get home from work and be snowed in with their significant others - cuddling on the couch, catching up on their DVR shows, sipping red wine. I literally get angry sometimes. Don't these people realize that there are those of us who suffer when it snows? Snow to me means - hectic mornings trying to get ready for work without Cody there to help. It means having a cranky husband who hasn't slept for days and is tired of working in the middle of the night. It means sad questions from Jaden asking - "Where's Daddy?" Snow to me means my family is apart - my husband is tired - my kids are cranky - and Mommy is stressed. (It also means good money for Cody's business --- but that's hard to think about when I catch my 11 month old son covered in melted chocolate ice cream on our way out the door as I'm already running late for work because I've been taking care of the boys and the home by myself for the third straight morning). So -- there's that. The blizzard. Since last Monday night, Cody has had one night off. Last Friday night. Every night since then he has had to go out in the middle of the night for at least a few hours. They have a lot of snow removal accounts - which again is great for business - not so great for my sanity. Or his.

Then my kids got sick. Really sick. Jaden came down with a really bad cold - a horrible cough - and a fever by Friday morning. Friday was supposed to be his last day at the only daycare he's ever known since he was a baby. (That's a whole different story - and probably will turn out to be another blog entry topic) ;) Cody had to be at work - I had to be at work to turn in my 2011 budget. (Really? That was the last thing I wanted to be focused on at that point) -- and my mom - who normally is our "back up" babysitter when the kids are sick -- was in Cedar Rapids. Because on Friday morning - on top of everything else - my grandpa passed away. My mom is now parent-less. I am now grandparent-less. And I had nowhere for my sick little boy to go. I called my dad. Thank goodness it was the one day that he didn't have 12 meetings scheduled for work. He was able to take the day off to spend some quality grandpa-grandson time with Jaden. We sent Brandon to daycare - and I went to work spending the day at my desk trying to put together our budget in between trying to stop the tears from coming after just finding out about my grandpa. It was a very long day. By Friday night, Brandon's cold was getting worse, Jaden wasn't any better, and I was bracing myself for a very long weekend, as well. Saturday Cody was gone a good chunk of the day doing a home inspection. Our basketball team lost to Drake. We shouldn't have lost to Drake. Saturday night it snowed. Again. Not a lot - but enough so that Cody had to work a good chunk of the day on Sunday, too. By Sunday afternoon my kids looked miserable, acted miserable, and I'd had enough. Cody took them to convenient care when he got done working. We were lucky - no strep throat, no ear infections... but coughs so bad that they both had to receive steroid shots to try and help with the cough. We also received a warning from the doctor - "no daycare on Monday." Monday - the day they were supposed to start at their new daycare. The day of my grandpa's visitation. The day Cody was supposed to be able to catch up on sleep. Now he was stuck at home with two very cranky kids who were sick of being stuck inside - sick of being sick. I went to work until noon and then headed to Cedar Rapids for Grandpa's visitation. Last night was spent filling out all of the paperwork for the new daycare, buying diapers to send along, cleaning bottles to send along -- and praying that the kids would be healthy enough to go to the new place this morning. Cody also had to go into work at 10:00 last night... but hoped to be able to sleep all day today. Ha.

2:00 this morning Brandon starts crying. Cody had just gotten home - we go in to check on him, and he's running a fever of 100. Seriously?? I went back to my bedroom for two minutes, laid on my bed, and got mad at God. I'll admit it. I said a very very sincere but heated prayer - "give us a break - give my kids a break - please!" Then I took care of my fussy little guy. In the process of all of this... I forgot to set my alarm to wake me up this morning. I woke up at 7:30 -- all three of my guys still sleeping -- and panicked. In order to get to work on time and get my kids dropped off at daycare -- I have to leave the house at 7:15. I still had to shower, pack up the car with all of their daycare stuff, wake my kids up, assess their health, get them dressed, get them their medicine, etc. Not to mention -- I had to leave them at a brand new house with brand new people, and they still aren't completely feeling like themselves. Then Cody tells me he has to go into work at 11:00 today instead of being able to sleep. It's never ending. At least that's how it feels.

As I type this, I have received a couple of updates from the new daycare - Jenn - she says Jaden is doing good helping her bake cupcakes. Brandon is a little needy and wanting to be cuddled -- but that's to be expected when he's at a place he doesn't know and is cutting his ninth tooth. (Yes - he's teething on top of everything else). And I am sitting here saying... things have to be better tomorrow.

Days like today - weeks like this past week - I am more than ever grateful for my faith. Because even when the days don't get better when I think they should... I know they will in His time. I have faith - therefore I have hope. And I also have a wonderful family, an adorable little 11 month old who has taken a few steps towards walking by himself the last few days, and a fantastic three year old that looked at me when I got home from saying goodbye to my grandpa last night and said, "I missed you Mommy!"

I have faith... therefore I have hope. And... there is a bottle of red wine in my refrigerator waiting for me... just in case I ever need it.