19 April 2012

Rearranging life

So today, I got completely fed up with the state of the house (how it's not really ever clean mostly) so I did something about it.

I rearranged the furniture.

That counts as cleaning, right?

I hadn't planned on doing that, although I will admit I have been tossing around ideas for a different living room set up for sometime now in my mind. But it was not planned. Usually such ideas don't come to fruition for me.

I started out cleaning. Really. I did the dishes and put some laundry in the wash. Then I picked up all the toys and assorted articles of clothing and dried up wipes that the kids had used to "clean". And I started vacuuming. Well, to vacuum the dining room (yes, I have to vacuum the dining room because the housing planner on basis is an absolute genius and had carpet installed in the all the dining room - because, you know, we enlisted folk won't ever have small kids while we're young), I had to take out the chairs.

And for some reason I was in a very thorough vacuuming mood, so I also moved the table and the pack n play to vacuum under them. So I decided to just rearrange things when I put them back.

On to the living room! I was still in a thorough mood, even though by now all the kids were crying (Sophie and Edward because they're afraid of the vacuum and Daphne because it was past nap time), but I wanted to finish. Darn it, I was going to finish cleaning! So I vacuumed the whole living room and had the following result:

the couch is now under the ledge separating the dining and living room
the coffee table is parallel the couch
the bouncer and red chair are parallel to the coffee table
the kids table is in the center of the long wall
the kids shelf is moved all the way up against the wall
the gold rocking chair is next to the TV (where it will hopefully not fall on anyone which is why it was in the other corner)
oh, and the carpet is vacuumed.

Then I decided to switch all the art work in the dining room and living room.

I think it looks nice. I wonder what Mike will think of it?

Upcoming give away!

I've decided I'm going to do my first ever give away! Yay!

I haven't decided what I'm going to give away yet, but I have decided that my 777th post (yep - that many!) is the going to be the post number of the giveaway.

Lest, of course, I forget, which is not entirely out of the realm of possibilities.

Anyway, stay tuned and keep reading! You might just win something! :)

13 April 2012

Easter

Easter passed without much to-do or fuss around here. It was a fairly quiet Sunday actually, and very nice.

I had wanted to get Sophie and Daphne matching dresses for Easter, but procrastinator that I am, I didn't start looking until a few days before Easter (at Target), so I consider myself lucky to have found one dress at all that they could match in. (We did, you'll see it in a minute).

We attempted to go to an Easter egg hunt the Saturday before with Sierra, but we arrived literally two minutes too late (that was my fault because we had to stop on the way at Walgreens so I could buy the kids some baskets in which to collect eggs). Some other children were very kind and generous though and shared their eggs with Sophie and Edward.

Afterward we went to Sierra's church, Evangel Christian, for lunch and some fun games. They had bouncy houses, and Sophie actually wanted to jump in. That is, until it was her turn to get in and jump (after waiting in line for 10 minutes) and she declined. We'll just leave it at that.

Sunday morning, miraculously, we had a few minutes to spare after getting ready for church before we had to leave (and we had to be there early since I was serving in the Children's Ministry), so I took the opportunity to take some Easter pictures. They actually turned out really well; I was quite pleased.

After church we didn't have our normal Community Group, so we got some Wendy's (I know - classic Easter feasting substance) and went to Bicentennial Park on base to have a picnic and then the kids could play on the playground. It was a beautiful day and a lovely time. I absolutely love family picnics. There is just something about the whole family sitting on a blanket in a sea of grass (there is green grass at Bicentennial Park!!), eating together and having fun. Of course, the kids aren't great conversationalists at their age, but that will come in time. It's just the togetherness of family time that I love.

After a quickly, and not much eaten lunch, Sophie and Edward ran off to play on the playground with Mike. Daphne and I stayed on the blanket so I could finish eating (since Daphne wanted to eat when everyone else was eating, of course), and then she and I had some fun together.

I was able to get some wonderful pictures of the kids playing together at the park.

We didn't do any egg dying or rabbit visiting or anything like that. I had wanted to do Resurrection cookies, but that was a planning and execution failure on my part. Maybe next year. I had also wanted to do Resurrection rolls, but again, planning and execution failure on my part. We wouldn't have done the egg hunt either, except that Sierra had invited us and it did sound like a fun time. And it was another opportunity to hang out with Sierra and her family before she PCS's. Although in hind sight Sophie and Eward probably would have been completely overwhelmed by the stampede of children rushing at all the colorful eggs lying out in the grass. Anyway, all's well that ends well.

I would also have loved to have done a family devotional, or at least some family Scripture reading together, but Mike never said anything about it and I'm trying to work on this letting him lead the family thing and since whenever I suggest doing anything of the sort he takes it as me leading, I just didn't say anything and so we all missed out. Boo on that. Next year. I hope.

Anyway, here are the pics before I get myself into trouble . . .





















A bit of brutal honesty

Sometimes it just helps to get things out there.

Have you ever felt like you were just going along in life and there were some struggles here and there but you honestly thought that was everything was okay. And then suddenly you realize that everything is not okay. Things are actually crumbling down around you.

Upon closer examination of the pillars that hold up your life, you see that they are cracked, damaged and worn. Not up to holding things up any longer.

When did this happen? What was I doing that I didn't see the decay and the strain wearing away?

Or did I know it was there and just wanted to put up a facade so that I could pretend, subconsciously, that all is well when behind that facade things are indeed not well at all.

He came down the stairs tonight dressed in his blues for the Directorate's Dining Out. His striking profile in the sharp blue uniform catching me off guard - exquisitely handsome, broad shouldered, manly - but I couldn't say so because there's this invisible wall of non-communication between us.

I wanted to go to him, to kiss him, to put my hands on his strong chest and tell him how great he looked, how sexy, how proud I am of him for his service to our country. He doesn't wear his blues very often . . . but his words last night still sting in my ears and I can't open my mouth, instead a tightness forms in my chest and I look away, focusing on something else instead.

He turns his back to me to head out the door and I glance up, taking him in, wishing I could be on his arm. Wishing we were friends again. Lovers again. Wishing things weren't the way they are and so much more.

Google storage?

I had no idea that Google had storage for pictures used on your blog.

Or that said storage could get full.

Apparently Google uses Picassa for pictures for their products, such as Blogger (among others).

Has anyone else found this out as they ran out of storage when they were trying to upload a photo for their blog?

And here I thought that the internet had unlimited space and my blog was my own personal space. For free.

I guess I was wrong. I think I might be changing over to WordPress or something else for my blog. After I do some research of course.

I'd love to hear other peoples thoughts and opinions on this and what they have done for their blog. Seriously. Please leave lots of comments dear readers. :)

05 April 2012

Playing together

My kids love to play together! I know, it's actually called parallel play, but whatever. The three of them sit together and play with blocks or whatever and they don't fight and they share. I love it! This may only be a season, so I've been capturing proof of it whenever it occurs, plus it's just cute!

I was afraid that since Sophie and Edward have such a close bond, that Daphne might be viewed as some kind of interloper, unwelcomed and shut out, but that hasn't been the case at all. Sophie and Edward just welcome her right into their playing and are happy to share their toys. Sometimes they even bring her toys to play with. That is such answered prayer! I have a feeling that the three of them are going to be pretty close growing up.

So here are a few shots from the past few weeks of the kids playing together.

Sophie set up her flower and butterfly pillows to read to them, then Edward joined in at the last minute.

Sophie, 2 years old, and Daphne 7 months

Playing blocks together

Edward is sharing his blocks with Daphne

Sophie and Edward got a fish puzzle from Tammi for their birthday, so here they are playing with it. Edward, 2 years, Sophie 3 years, Daphne 7 months



Edward's 1st haircut

I don't think I wrote about this yet (shame on me!) - Edward had his first cut hair a few weeks ago!

I have to admit, I was in denial. Major denial about Edward's hair length. Mike and a few friends had been saying for months that Edward needed a haircut, but I was like "No - he's fine. It's not that long."

Yeah, I was in denial.
 Well, I finally made up my mind that he had to get his hair sooner or later. Normally I'm not quite so sentimental, well, ok, I am that sentimental, but in the end reality does win. And I did not want Edward to have really long hair. And Mike was definitely against him having long hair.

 Luckily, my friend Sierra had told me about this amazing kids' hair cut place called Jungle Cuts. So I made an appointment and we went. Okay, the first appointment had to be rescheduled and we went to the second appointment. I had bad timing that day.

I thought that Edward would freak about getting his hair cut, but he was perfect the whole time. He spent a lot of time looking around and studying the colorful salon and the animals on the wall. And they had a video playing too that he hadn't seen.
 We had a great stylist who was very patient with him. She did a great job!
Edward even sat perfectly still when they got the clippers out so she could do around his ears.

And there's my handsome Little Man with his new haircut! It does really good and once he had his cut, I realized how long overdue it was. Hopefully I won't let it get that long again. Shorter hair does look so much better on him! :)

Sophie & Edward's birthday party

It seems like only last week I was in the labor and delivery room at OU Medical Center holding my first child, my newborn daughter in my arms, studying her face, marveling at her coos and just falling in love with her.

Even harder to believe [sometimes] is that not quite a year later I was in another labor and delivery room at OU Medical Center holding my newborn son in my arms, studying his face, marveling at how big he was and falling in love with him.

That was three and two years ago. I now have a pre-schooler (where does the time go??) and a toddler/pre-schooler. Wow! They are growing in leaps and bounds. Edward is running around jumping over everything and Sophie just talks up a storm. She is making short sentences now and loves to tell stories and sing. The other day I had a French CD on and she was singing in French! I'm not kidding! Not trying to brag or anything, she was just copying what she was hearing . . .

Last year I was not up to throwing a birthday party at all, so we had a quite get together with Mike's parents, who were in town visiting, and Sierra and her kids. We had pizza, I bought fancy cupcakes that we forgot to eat, and the kids opened a few gifts.

This year I wanted to throw a big party for them. Nothing fancy, but friends and cake and food. It was really hard to decide on a date with weekend trips planned. And Mike was supposed to go TDY, then it got moved, then it got canceled, so we ended up doing it on a Monday evening, but it worked out well. I think only one person wasn't able to make it because it was a Monday. Although a lot of people thought I just wrote down the wrong date (not too hard to picture that), so I confirmed that yes, I meant Monday. :)

Thankfully I put on the invites to not bring gifts, so the kids weren't inundated with presents. They have plenty of toys and don't need any more.

We had a great turn out. My friend Tammi was amazing and came early to help out with food. I was so glad that she did because as usual I was off schedule, so she was able to fix the food while I iced the cakes. Sierra came with Will and Alanna, Mindy brought Chloe, Linda brought Adiah and Caleb, who had turned a year old the day before Sophie, Wes and Karen came with Alex and Karen's sweet parents Ginny, Tammi of course was there and she brought Lindsey and Adrianne, Aleah came and she brought a little boys he was babysitting. I hope I'm not forgetting anyone . . .

It was a really good time. I didn't get over stressed, which was nice. I think Sophie and Edward had a good time playing with all of their friends. Daphne had a good time visiting with Ginny, Karen's mom. I had made a cake for each of the kids. Originally I was going to bake them from scratch, but the commissary had cakes on sale with a coupon too, so I ended up doing store bought cake and icing. The decorating was completely free hand though, I didn't even use a diagram for the colors. I had to decorate the cakes really quickly though, so they didn't look as good as they could have (or as good as Sophie's 1 st birthday cake). I used decorations that I had from other birthday parties, so we didn't have a specific theme per se .. .

I'm so glad we were able to have a nice birthday party for the kids. :)

So here are the pics:

Sophie's cake

Edward's cake

Alex, Wes and Karen

Mike had completely forgotten about the party and came to the house completely decorated and some guests having already arrived. He was pretty tired and very shocked to say the least. I guess I should have reminded him!

Edward's 2! Having fun with balloons too.

Mindy

Aleah - Aleah babysits Sophie and Edward when I have an appointment or a meeting or when Mike and I have a date and she loves the kids and they really love her. It's great!

Adiah and Adrianne playing

Caleb

Lindsey

Caleb, far left, Adrianne and Adiah playing doctor together - so sweet!

Sierra

Ginny, Karen's mom

Linda

Yummy food - and yes, I cleared the counter again!

Karen, Mindy and Ginny did a great job of decorating

Alanna

Tammi

Ginny and Daphne

Lighting the cakes - Edward immediately stuck his hand in his cake, so he got that piece. :)



Yay for blowing out candles and singing happy birthday!

The whole family!

I would love to know what is going on his mind sometimes!




Daphne loves her bouncer

Sierra and Alanna

Linda and Caleb

Edward has lost his pants. Again. Lol.
Happy Birthday Sophie and Edward - my beautiful children! I love you so very very much!