Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Thankful.

Suddenly I find myself on the eve of holiday season and it feels like this year has gone by so fast. And at the same time, so dang sloooowww. These are the days of excited screams and hugs when Dad pulls up into the driveway, (and I) simultaneously boil inside when hes two minutes late. A year ago, Bryce was in the front pack and now the belt on the shopping cart barely fits around him. A year ago Luke had just transitioned to his toddler bed and now I'm browsing twin beds and comforter sets.

For the most part I can see the silver linings of the drama in toddlerhood. Cody reminded me the other day how much he admires that quality in me. I believe one day their fiascoes will actually be funny. Right now I just have to breathe. The horrible public embarrassment and bewilderment at the temper tantrums doesn't go away. I really impressed myself today with how calm I was able to be while a certain son screamed his brains out in the grocery line. I only needed a cantaloupe. Breathe. But then we got home and I couldn't get the shrink wrap off my new box of green tea. Mom's turn to cry. 



One of my biggest fears is becoming burnt out and indifferent to my kids meltdowns. Where is that balance between 'get over it' and helping them work through their feelings? The answer seems to change minute to minute. So crying over tea assures me that my heart is still beating and sensitive. And I'm thankful for that. Thankful for the times I cry out to God for help. Asking for energy. For forgiveness. Without my kids, I might not have learned how fervently I need the Lord in my life. I might not have learned how to turn the other cheek and begin anew (again and again) day after a day full of tantrums and bullying one another. And then just when I think the sun has imploded and won't ever shine again, they laugh. They share. They eat a piece of broccoli. I might even get a hug or two before it becomes a wrestling match with me in the middle. 

Luke says the funniest things and wants to kiss me on the lips. Bryce is happiest in my arms and presses his cheek to my lips when he wants a kiss. We love peanut butter and listening to Dad play guitar. Highs and lows they are my family. I could pull my hair out over them and then turn around and go to war for them. Everyone says I'll miss these days, and truthfully I'm not so sure about that! They are definitely precious moments but so far each stage of their lives is my new favorite. Each new ability brings excitement and another possible way to end up in the ER. Lord please have mercy and don't let us grow out of naptime quite yet.






Monday, April 4, 2016

Heart Full & Hands Full

As a parent you get asked all kinds of questions on a regular basis. Especially if you want more kids and in our case, if we want to try for a girl. I usually (jokingly?) reply that I might not survive another child. I realize that I am not the first person to have two kids and a huge part of our population actually has more than two kids--and I am thoroughly impressed with you. Cody and I were both sure we wanted more than two originally but now we are just so in love (and tired) with our two. We agreed to not make a definite decision until Bryce turns two. Having this decision on hold has been really freeing for us, instead of playing the what-if game on square footage and seat-belts we are just absorbing the beauty in our hands right now. Its really a refreshing thing. When Luke was a baby we dreamed of future siblings for him. Since Bryce has joined us, our puzzle feels complete. Our hearts are full and our hands are full. 




A few weeks (maybe months actually..) I was curious if I was really as busy as I felt I was. So I started jotting down my 'day in the life'...

5:30AM- Mumble "I love you, be safe, bye" to Cody as he leaves for work
6AM- Luke is at my bedside staring me down to see any clue of wakefulness. Climbs into bed and snuggles like a fish out of water. 
6:10- Snuggle time complete (thankfully no black eyes) and the running of the hall has begun since Bryce is babbling. Luke makes sure to relay the messages ("Mom seeping" & "Byce wake up")
6:30- Diaper changes and morning milk. Fumble through making toast. Drink room temperature coffee while reading books, hot wheeling and cushioning falls. 
7:30- Bryce is cranky. Luke wants to scale the walls. 
8AM- Party in the bathroom while I try to put my face on. It starts to rain.
8:30- Loaded into the car. Not sure where we are going but Luke is crazy hyper and Bryce wants to sleep. Not a good combo for a our cozy space on a rainy day.
9:10AM- Wind up at Chick-fil-A for coffee. Stumble through the door and greeted by happy families in unwrinkled clothes.  
9:45AM- Kids have been enjoying themselves and I got to drink some (hot) coffee. Feeling like I've done something right until Luke poops and I realize I forgot the wipes. Considered using the purel hand wipes because things were just beginning to go so well. 
10:10- Strapped in and loaded into the car heading home. Bryce falls alseep in the car seat and I successfully transfer him to the crib without waking him. So awesome! Decide to throw Luke into the shower instead of using 40 wipes to clean him.
11AM- Its still raining. Set up play tent and crawl tubing so its like Chick-fil-A came to us. Sorta. 

After this was getting Luke down for a nap then Bryce waking up and more juggling and I stopped writing things down because I'm sure you can imagine. It was more an experiment for myself anyhow. There's the whole "stop the glorification of busy" but I guess that doesn't apply to moms. Well maybe in some circumstances but I did want to see if I am as busy as I feel. The answer is definitely yes. Hands full and hearts full. 




Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Its a crazy, beautiful life!

Wanted to squeeze in one more little blurb to round out the year here! Life as a family of four is way more exciting, tiring, phenomenal, exhausting, mind-blowing and dizzying than I anticipated. I mean I knew my world would be turned upside down, because thats what out of this world blessings do to you. But wow. Wow. WOW. Everyday is like a crazy roller coaster. And often all through the night too. But I really, honestly wouldn't trade it for the world. Watching these boys (and their daddy) love on and goof around with each other fuels me through the life lessons being taught (and learned). 








I had about 45 million other photos and stories and one-liners and crazy moments to share (and record for future embarrassing stories) but right now they're all escaping me and I'm just relieved that for however long it lasts, both these kiddos are sleeping soundly! Maybe this next year I'll at least start journaling in one of the three irresistibly cute ones I've purchased. Maybe not. These days are often a blur and Instagram and Facebook are just way too convenient of alternatives. 

Closing out this year recognizing that I don't really know what I am doing, but with my husband by my side and Jesus molding my heart, I can be grounded in the moment at hand. Just when I think I've failed and cannot recover, I'm given a reassurance of love and I'm so grateful for this love my family has for me. I have them all hopelessly fooled that I'm superhuman. Well actually, Cody just reminded me tonight that I'm human and that means I make mistakes when I cried over clothes that I ruined in the dryer. Nevertheless, I'm equal parts excited and nervous for the coming year and the adventures ahead!!







Monday, September 14, 2015

Welcoming Bryce Roy!

Our second lovebug of a boy was born on July 13th at 2:57 PM! He measured 21 inches and 8 pounds, 3 ounces. Now if you're not the squeamish type, keep reading for the full story!


Monday morning I woke up at 6:30 feeling a contraction, which had been typical for the past week so I let it and the following one pass without too much thought. Once I finished scrolling Instagram, I waddled my way down the hall to the bathroom and my water broke! Not a gush like with Luke, but enough that I knew what was happening. It was 6:45 and Cody started work at 7. I quickly called him and told him it was "D-day"!! (Backtracking a moment here--he stayed home the previous Friday because between my random contractions and Luke developing a pink eye infection it was a home in need of Dad super powers! Friday morning he told me he was staying home and that I should put my tough girl pants because we were going on walks and doing yard work until I went into labor! Haha!) So when he arrived to work Monday everyone asked about the baby and he told them all we had walked and worked on over the weekend and that I was still pregnant. Only to have his phone ring seconds later with me giving him the 'get-your-butt-home-now' news!

By 9AM we were in the hospital with consistent and growing contractions, thankfully they were of more typical timing than I had experienced with Luke. Around noontime I was still dilated to a 2. Disappointed but not hopeless. By 1pm I couldn't take the pain anymore, especially considering I still had 8cm to go. So Mr. Epidural came in and by 2pm I was feeling moderate relief and had dilated to 8cm! Within minutes I started feeling the pressure to push, and the nurse told me I was at 10cm but that it would be best to let him drop further before pushing. Having the epidural was so helpful for me, I only had to handle the pressure and not the pain. Which honestly, the pressure is very painful but its just a different type of pain! My mom, Cody and Katy had been taking turns comforting and encouraging me. The nurses advised no more lunch breaks for my support crew and at 2:40 I was given the go-ahead to push! And at 2:57 Bryce was born! I remember being in such shock (but also relief) that he was born so quickly. And since I had no fever and Bryce was completely healthy we got to stay together. Huge, huge answer to prayer!!!



Bryce is a real snuggler, and its forcing me to learn how to cuddle, to sit and be still. I'm not sure I'll ever master the skill, he definitely gets that ability from Cody! Bryce is a bottomless pit just like Luke and has grown so fast already in his first two months of life on the outside! Luke is very sweet with him, gives kisses, does tummy time with him and loves picking out what he should wear. Bryce has been a smiley boy too! Loving the love he has for all of us!!





Saturday, May 30, 2015

Little Man Quilt

I recently finished a quilt for our second boy on the way! I really love Luke's blue and gray quilt so I modeled this one after it. Except in red and gray to keep with their room colors. Also side story.. I realized Luke's birthstone is blue sapphire and so is his quilt, baby-boy-number-two is due in July (he better not wait til August to arrive!) and his birthstone will be ruby and his quilt is red! I mean come on! How perfect is that?? Now I know God has much bigger things to orchestrate, but I definitely have to credit Him for knowing my OCD and sentimental self!


Finish size of this quilt is 36" x 45" and the squares are 6-inchers. Sewing down the ric-rac was the trickiest part for me, they're slightly crooked--next time I'll use more pins to keep it from slipping about. After purchasing the polka dot print for the backing I realized buying yards of each print was going to be slightly excessive. So after that I toned down my shopping zeal and purchased a couple half yards and mostly fat quarters for this project. Leftover squares were stripped down for the binding. Oh! And I actually machine quilted this one!! Simple stitch in the ditch, but it felt good!!




Getting more and more excited and anxious to meet this little guy! Let me tell you, he's busy busy busy already. Hoping for a few calm moments of snuggling with him and this quilt though! This is the first quilt I feel proud of creating. I feel like I'm starting to know what I am doing, sewing straighter seams, planning out design more, etc. Its been just over a year since I finished my first quilt and this is my seventh one! So I guess its about time I start showing some skills and confidence :) Big BIG thank you to all my friends and family who remain so enthusiastic and encouraging of my creations. You're really the best!





Thursday, May 21, 2015

What good is a race with no hurdles??

This has been one of those weeks where Thursday, today, feels like Wednesday of next week. Its just been so crazy! Had a particularly trying daycare day with a child who, to put it mildly, has separation anxiety. Then Cody had car battery trouble getting home from work, and then our water heater needed fixing. Oh and lets not forget we are prepping for our bedroom remodel/swap this weekend so I've been packing up our entire room! Thank goodness I have these two, soon to be three (!!!!), men in my life to remind me to have humor and we're all in this together!


Luke is the cutest little go-getter right now, always has to be right in on the action with us. He 'washes' dishes, helps with dinner, waters the plants... I just love it! He picks up Cody's level and inspects everything, turns pencils into makeshift screwdrivers, 'vacuums' and puts his laundry away! He also is super great at picking things up off the floor for me. Getting hard to do that with his little brother packed up inside like a jack-in-the-box!




I do have to highlight though that the blessing of this week was the timing of our tax return! We had some materials to purchase for our room remodel this weekend and our state tax return came in several weeks early meaning we avoided putting any of this project on our credit card. Can I get an AMEN! God always provides!




Thursday, May 14, 2015

Flannel Baby Blankets

I know I just got done raving about the easy peasy fleece blankets, but these double sided flannels are just as addicting! I had so much fun pairing fabrics for little-man-on-the-way. Although there is a boom of girls going around right now too, so I guess next I should venture into a few feminine choices! 





Each blanket is two one-yard cuts of fabric, sewn right sides together (inside out). Leave about a two inch section un-sewn so you can flip it right side out. Before doing so, it really helps to trim excess fabric off the seam line for a clean finish. I also clipped the corners on a diagonal for to help them lay flat. Once you've turned your blanket right side out, fold the raw edges in and sew closed as close to the edge as possible. There are many stitch options for this, I just did a normal stitch right along the edge in thread that would blend in. 




I alternated between sewing the in-set border at 1" or 2" from the edge. I'm slightly leaning towards the 2" edge as my preference, for now. Also sewing with minky was not as scary as I read! Just make sure to pin often to keep the fabric from slipping. 




I can't wait to wrap up our newest little guy in these blankets!! 10 more weeks to go!