Friday, December 30, 2011

Miscarry

Finding out I am pregnant leaves me bursting with joy and excitement. Uncontainable joy that I don't try to contain. So, I tell early because I want to share my joy with the world! While I understand why people choose to wait to share such blessed news, I just can't do it! I've had people question the wisdom of this decision, asking what would I then do if something "happened". I've gotten the shocked question...Have you even heard the heartbeat yet?!!! Alas, I have always thrown "caution" to wind.   My view has always been that if I miscarried my baby I would want the love and support of my friends and family to see me through that tough time. A miscarriage is a baby lost whether anybody else knows about it or not, and I just didn't feel like it would be something I would want to go alone.

We lost our baby on Christmas Day at eight weeks, and as hard as it has been, I am not sorry that I shared.  The joy that we felt before was just as real as the loss that we feel now, and I am grateful for the acknowledgement of that fact.

I am left humbled by the miracle that each precious life is.  I am reminded that few things in life are guaranteed.  A baby in my arms next August was no more guaranteed than are long lives for the rest of our children, or even my next breath, and I don't ever want to take that for granted.  God tells us that our lives are like vapor, here one second and gone the next.  The only way to make that vapor count is to be living for Him everyday, throwing caution to the wind on a daily basis.  In moments such as these the reality of this hits home.  It is good to be reminded, and to be motivated to make life count in the way God meant it to. 

God is good.  God is faithful.  His love endures.  He binds up the brokenhearted.  He makes our yoke easy and light.  Thank you Jesus for all of our blessings.  I am so very glad to know you.

         

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Monday, November 21, 2011

Brrr

Ice froze the door handles of Nick's truck thid morn before work.  He ended up accidentally breaking a window trying to get in.  Spent an hour in the 30 degree weather and then had to call off work.  Garage parking from now on!  We are so new at this whole freezing weather thing!  Anyhow, we used the day to go to Costco and get some things for thanksgiving, and boy was Costco packed!  It was insane!  They must have had like 1,000 pumokin pies there too!

We are doing Thanksgiving at out house this year!  That's a first.  I am supposed to make an edible turkey, so we will see how that goes.  At this point it is still frozen solid attempting to be defrosted while in the fridge.  Oh, boy.

The twins are started to remember and "read" certain books with me.  Well, really just the one.  Go Away Dog.  Every night they tell me "read the dog".  I LOVE hearing them learn and remember stories.  It is adorable, and I really can't believe just one year ago they really only said, mamma, dadda, and baby.  MY how they are grown from babies to toddlers, and now on the brink of full out little boys.  Be still for a while clock.

Caleb is pretty much amazing!  He is definitely advanced both physically and verbally!  He can now say hot, ball, mama, dada, no, and uh oh!  He actually said four words in a row once..."no no don't touch" after we told him that a bunch of times regarding the wood burning stove.  Amazingly, he just knows it's hot and pretty much doesn't touch it.  There have been no burns.

Noah is still our little softy, and pretty sensitive.  He LOVES playing with Chey Chey, and he is just growing so fast.  He is very perceptive, and really understands peoples feelings.  He is also a very big rule follower.  He will remind you to put on your seat belt, and not go to fast so you don't get a ticket.  If he thinks a rule is being broken, he reminds me to keep it!  Funny boy.  He still lvoe being told stories.  He will listen to a book being read, but prefers for me to tell him a story.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

We went to church today for the second time at our new "Hillside" in Wrightwood!  Noah did really good going into his class, especially since Jackson is in his class!  Micah and Levi screamed for WAY less time than they did last week, and Caleb made it throught the whole service with out them having to page me!  I guess he cried on and off though.  I REALLY hated to leave him.  He was clinging to me whiel I sat in there for a while trying to get him used to it, but I finally just went out quickly.  I LOVE that he wants to be by my side, but I would like it if he could just spend that one hour in there so I can hear the message and not be sad that he is sad.  Hopefully it gets better!
Poor Micah and Levi too!  They are just not used to getting left with strangers!  I don't blame them for screaming, but they will obviously do better if we go every week!  Hopefully they don't get sick as much as they did from church last year!

Noah, Micah and Levi all got really sick from church just last week!  It started on Wednesday with Micah and Levi having 104 fevers and both throwing up, but only once each.  Then it was gone as quickly as it came on, within one day.  Then Noah came down on Thursday and was over it by Friday!  Thank goodness it was short lived, and PRAISE Jesus Caleb didn't get it!  I think my breastmilk played a part in protecting him from getting sick!  God designed human milk so wonderfully amazing!  I am so thankful!

Anyhow, we made breakfast burritos at Jeremiah and Nicole's after church and Noah stayed when we took the other boys home for naps, and watched Cars2 with his cousins!  What a big boy he is getting to be!

The three littlest ones napped for 2 hours....all at the same time!  Glorious!  I took a nap myself, and actually woke on my own without being woken by someone else!  That almost NEVER happens to my sleep!  What a great feeling! 

Overall, a very relaxing and restful day!  Thank you Jesus!

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Six years and counting...

Today we celebrated six years of marriage!  Seems like yesterday, and yet an entire lifetime ago!  Brianna and Ricky watched the kiddos while they slept so that Nick and I could go to dinner!  We went to the Blue Ridge Inn in Wrightwood.  It's a dimly lit romantic little place, and I had a yummy steak!  Nick ordered fish and chips, and he said he like it.  We just enjoyed each others company, and savored a little night out!  It was way overdue!

I'm so thankful that Nick chose me, and I am so thankful that God has blessed out marriage, and continues to bless it!  So very thankful for the children our home is blessed with, and excited to see the new faces He may bless our family with!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

I'm alive....just buried under boxes!

We moved!  I never write anymore!  I NEED to.  My baby can walk!!!  And he's almost ONE! sniff!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

September so far...

Is all about getting our house! I have been on the phone with a lot of agents, lenders, and insurance agents! I'm buried under mounds of paperwork, but soon it will all have been worth it! Our own house FINALLY, with four acres for the boys to run free! We've been in escrow since the seventh, and will hopefully be closing around October seventh.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

The tale of a not so typical thursday

So Test Kitchen Tuesday actually occured on thursday this week.

Italian Chicken and Rice Casserole was a little dry in my opinion, but had really good flavor.  I think I will try to tweak it next time to make it a little moister.  Overall it was yummy though, and a nice twist to a chicken and rice caserole.




Today Levi got the back of his head gashed open by the little tyke pool falling on his head, courtesy of Noah and Micah holding it up and then dropping it right on him.  He ran towards the house crying and holding his head, and as soon as I picked him up and touched the back of his head, my hand came away bloody.  I located the gash, and could tell right away it would need a stitch.  So my Dad luckily was able to come home from work early and watch the other three boys while I took Levi to the doctor  Naturally, I feel like a fantastic parent bringing my son, who has a broken collar bone, in to get stitches.  Nice.

Levi was such a good boy though.  He threw a fit when I took him into the doctor two days after he broke his collar bone, which now I know was because he was in so much pain.  So, I was a bit nervous about what would happen this time.  He suprised me when he just sat on the table like such a good boy and let the doctor search through his hair for the gash.  Then he sat so good waiting for the doctor to come back and give him one staple, which is what he said it needed.  I felt so bad that he didn't know what was coming and was sitting there nicely.  It wasn't hurting him anymore at this point, so I felt so bad that he had to be hurt more.  That boy has had enough pain in the last three weeks already!  The doctor didn't recommend numbing his head first either because he said it would take four shots to numb it, versus one quick staple.

Anyway, he sat in shock for about a half a second after the staple went in, and then burst out crying, and cried for about three or four minutes.  It sucked.  Then the doctor gave him two stickers, and I promised him ice cream, and he was fine.  My little trooper.

No more doctors, no more blood, no more scaring mommy, mmmk!?

Noah unloaded the top of the dishwasher rack all by himself today.  I was one proud mommy!  He put everything on the counter, which made it easier for me to put away!  He really helped me, and he was veyr proud of his accomplishment.  It was really cute.

We have been consistent with disciplining and training the boys over the last few days, and we are already noticing a big difference in their behavior.  Yay for boys who are learning to obey well!  I strongly believe that we teach our children to obey us, to teach them to obey God, so we don't want to slack in this area any longer.  Lord, help us!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Caleb...

This sweet boy took his first steps yesterday.  How can one moment bring up such conflicting emotions within my heart?  Thank you Lord, for the gift of watching our children grow.  Give us the wisdom to raise them in your nurture and admonition, as they spring up like weeds before our eyes!

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Meal Planning Week One

Wen to Costco today and bought everything for a weeks worth of meals!  I'm excited!

http://eatathomecooks.com/2011/08/menu-grocery-list-recipes-year-2-week-42.html

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Levi...

DOES have a broken collar bone after all.  16 days and 3 appointments with Kaiser later.  I am pretty mad.  Kaiser is ridiculous.  Their ER is quicker than San Antonio's, but apparently that's because they send patients with broken bones home before they even x-ray them!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Test Kitchen Tuesday

That's right.  I have dubbed Tuesday the night for trying new dinner recipes. 

I have been recently attempting to meal plan, because I have faced facts that running to the grocery store is not possible.  And when I don't know what to make for dinner, and I have only chicken breast and rice for ingredients, it makes me grumpy.  Anyhow, I have been looking over lots of recipes to add to our collection, and I think I'll share my foodie finds.  Yay! We are going to be saved from eating tacos or pasta every night!

So, tonight I made South of the Border Skillet that I found on a blog called Eat at Home.  You can find weekly meal planners with grocery lists already made for each week.  Seriously, that is the stuff of fantasy.  I am in love.

This is the finished product from tonight.  It's glorified beans and rice, but oh so yummy.  We usually eat dinner with meat in it, but we didn't miss it one bit!  I will definitely make this again!  We paired it with fresh salsa from Costco, and the most delicious salad I have eaten in recent memory:

4 cups baby greens
1 avacado, diced
1/3 cup salsa
1/4 shredded cheese
2 green onions, sliced
Cilantro, handfull, chopped
Toss.  Enjoy.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Our baby can stand alone!

Noah went to my mom's after pre-school was done, so we went to pick him up, and stayed for dinner.  Chicken legs, mac-n-cheese, and corn and peas.  Yum!  Nick snapped this picture of Caleb playing by the slide.  I am sure he will be climbing up it in no time!  He stood alone for about 15 seconds in the grass, the longest he has gone so far.  He will be toddling in no time...no rush please!  I want to keep him my baby forever!  I never want his squishy chubbs to go away!
All four boys had a grand ol' time getting a shower with the hose.  When it's this hot, just do have to do it!  Maybe my parents should put in that pool...or we need one once we move to Pinon Hills!

Sunday, August 28, 2011

It's so hot!

The summer has officially arrived, even though it's just about ended!  It has been over one hundred degrees the last four or five days, and boy is it hot!  It's a good thing it hasn't been this hot most of the summer, or our air-conditioning bill would be so high!  We have even been leaving it on at night, which we don't usually do. 

If the boys go outside we have to be playing in the water.  Luckily, Caleb loves the pool.  I like putting him in there because it is a mini-playpen that he actually likes!  He has actually learned how to crawl out in the last few days, but he usually stays in for quite awhile first.  A few days ago, he watched Micah and Levi get out of the pool and go get on their bikes.  He watched them for a minute and then crawled right out, went over to the little radio flyer bike and climbed on and sat on it just like you are supposed to sit on it!  He learns so much from having big brothers!

Today at church Caleb crawled over to a 3 year old little boy in the fireside room and was being so friendly and cute.  He really captures attention because he is so happy and smiley.  He is such a blessing!

We cleaned the carpet this weekend and man did it need it!  Too many spills and potty accidents, and it hadn't been cleaned in 2 years.  Hopefully we find a house in Pinon Hills soon so we won't have to deal with nasty blue carpet anymore!

Had an enlightening argument discussion on FB about evolution and God.  A girl I used to go to church with was claiming to be a Christian even though she said she wasn't sure if Jesus was real or not.  Ummm, how does that work?  I pointed out the fact that believing in Jesus is key to being a Christian, and she accused me of judging her!  Don't you have to believe in Buddah to be a Buddhist!?  Geez.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Ah, summer!

I took the kids on a walk to my mom's house today.  I wanted to die about halfway through.  I had the triple stroller, and four children who couldn't or didn't want to walk any longer.  It was about 90 degrees, and I was drenched in sweat, but I trudged on!  I couldn't dissapoint the kiddos.  It did help that a solo walker told me I was supermom right about the time I felt like giving up!

So in honor of all the exercise that was had earlier in the day, we had cheeseburgers, sweet potatoe fries, mac and cheese, and broccoli for dinner.  We ate it at the picnic table.  We had watermelon ganita for dessert.  It was the perfect backyard summer dinner.  It was followed by giving all four boys a bath outside in their pool!  Ah, how I love summer.

Levi's neck and shoulder are much better than they were a week ago, but it is nowhere near back to 100%.  It still hurts him and he won't lift his arm all the way up.  It is hard to put shirts on him without it hurting, and he still won't let me pick him up from under his armpits.  The doctor said he should make a full recovery but that it could take weeks or even months.  Poor baby.

I experienced hearing the twins talk to each other today, and it was obvious they totally understood each other, and I couldn't make out what they were saying.  It was so funny that they understood each other perfectly.  Micah has been so sweet pointing to Levi's neck and saying, "Levi hurt. Neck.  On slide."They are talking to much, and turning into little boys.  They can boht now ride a big boy bike with training wheels!  So we now have three little boys zooming around the backyard on bikes!  It's adorable! 

Caleb is still melting my heart on a daily basis.  He is so happy.  He is even happy having been taking naps very well for the past 2 weeks.  He keeps taking only one nap, either the morning or the afternoon, and staying awake for the other one for an hour in his crib, so I get him up.  It makes he an overtired baby, but he still doesn't get very cranky.  I am still troubleshooting trying to figure out what is going on with that nap!  I really doubt he is ready for one nap!  That would be veyr unlikeyl at only nine months! 

I am also having some nursing difficulty.  Suddenly a crack has appeared, and it is killing me!  I have no idea why is cropped up all the sudden!  For the time being nursing on that one side requires me to sike myself up before hand to stand the pain! Ouch!  Hopefully it goes away soon!

Been having such a good time with Nick lately.  We went to dinner at Buca di Beppo on Friday night, and we have been spending a lot of time together.  I'm such a lucky woman! 

Noah is doing really well in preschool.  He sometimes doesn't want to read the books we have without pictures, but I don't really blame him!  He is still excited to do his preschool "work" everyday, and I am so proud of him!  I really think he is growing in his love of learning, and he is learning about Jesus everyday too, which makes me the happiest of all.  That's what it's all about, and and I am so glad we get to share this time together!  I only get one chance to do this life with my family, and I am so grateful we are doing it this way!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Nine Months

Caleb is nine months old today!  Boy, is he a busy, mobile little baby!

Friday, August 12, 2011

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Noah's First Day of Pre-School!

My little boy is officially a pre-schooler!  He was so darn excited to start pre-school today, and his excitement made it so much fun!  The last few years he has been pretty resistant to me trying to teach him letters and such, so much so that I worried over how things would go when it was time to start homeschooling.  Well, all those fears seem to have been for nothing as of now.  He just wasn't ready to have too much structured learning yet, but now he is ready and he is very excited! 

The first thing we did today was learn a bible memory verse, which we will practice everyday of the week.  I am really excited aboout doing this with him.  I count it as such a priviledge to be teaching him how to hide God's word in his heart!  I am looking forward to memorizing the verses with him as well!

The rest of the school time was spent reading a few stories aloud, and talking about them, as well as a few activities for him to do out of a little workbook.  One had him drawing lines, and the other had him picking out objects that were identical to each other.  This one I explained to him using his brothers as examples of identical looking objects!  He totally aced that activity!

The day was a success, and we are both excited to do it again tomorrow...and I think Caleb is excited too!  I'm so happy they can all continue learning and growing together!

Sunday, August 7, 2011

6 teeth

Caleb now has 6 teeth! Both top teeth next to the front teeth are now visible! The right one appeared on July 30, followed closely by the left one on August 1! I don't know if the teeth are hurting or what, but he will not stop biting! He doesn't even really bite when nursing, he just keeps biting my left arm near my shoulder! Right where he can reach when I hold him! I have red marks and bruises! Ouch! He is too cute though, so I can't get mad when he does it!

I finally got my last bunch of cloth diapers. I think I have 24 now, and I am definately a believer! The first laundry soap I used (Rockin green) left the didpers stinky, so I wasn't so sure, bug the new soap I have (Nelly's) works great! So glad I took a chance because we are going to save a lot of money! Especially if we have 10 babies! :)

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Tacos and a Baby!

Made chicken tacos for dinner tonight from The Pioneer Woman!  Boy, were they yummy!http://thepioneerwoman.com/cooking/2011/03/my-brothers-chicken-tacos/

We finally got to meet baby Jace yesterday!  He is so small and sweet!  Why do babies have to grow so fast!?  Sometimes I wish I could just have a redo with all of the kids and do it all over again, just so I could go back and enjoy each moment a second time!

I was glad to hear all about Nicole's experience with her natural VBAC2.  I wanted all the details! haha  Besides my midwife, I don't know one other person besides her (our age) that has had a baby without any drugs!  It's nice to have someone to talk about the experience with!  I think I will ask Nicole if she wants to write up her birth story and guest post it on this blog!  I would love to read it, and maybe share it with her permission.  It is so important and empowering to women to know they can give birth naturally, and I think hearing stories of women who did it is the first step towards making the decision to go for it!

Friday, July 29, 2011

Family Biking!

Today we went on our first bike ride as a family of 6!  I rode my bike with one kiddo in the bike seat, Nick rode his bike pulling a double bike trailer and Noah rode his own bike!  What a big boy!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

4 teeth!

Caleb now has 4 teeth!  His top right front tooth broke through on July 18, and the left one broke through on July 19.  He has been pretty fussy getting these two teeth, more so than he was with the bottom front two.  Those two he barely seemed to notice getting.  This time he has been wake up 3 or 4 times a night instead of once.  One night he kept waking up every 15 minutes for part of the night, so I definately knew his teeth were bothering him.  He has been wearing his amber teething necklace most of the time, and I have given his tylenol a few times as well.  I am pretty sure since they are both broken through now that things will get better for him!  I can't believe he is going to have those top teeth now!  It seems like those front top teeth belong in a baby older than my little baby!  He is growing too fast!  I am thankful he doesn't really bite me when he nurses.  I think he likes nursing to much to risk having me yank him off for biting!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Are we home yet?!

Since Nick and I were married five and a half years ago, we have called five places home:

1.  Our first apartment
2.  Nick's parents house
3.  A house in Wrightwood
4.  The tiny house off of Daycreek
5.  Our current home in Rancho

Our sixth anniversary in coming up in November, so we figure it's time to move again.   

But we are hoping this time will be different.  That's right.  We are hoping this time we will be moving into our very own home!  No more rent!  No more landlords!  No more living with the ancient blue carpet that our many, small, potty-training children insist on watering!

So, we signed an offer on a house today.  In Pinon Hills.  It's about 35 minutes from Rancho.  Up the 15 , and then off of the 138.  The house is off of a dirt road!  I never thought I would move there!  In fact, I think I swore I wouldn't.  Ya know, if I swore.  Which I don't.  But for a hundred thousand less than what we were thinking of spending in Rancho, we will be getting so much more, and I think we are making the best decision for our family.  If we get this house, I think we are going to love it, and Nick and I both really feel like this is where God is leading us.  Plus, how could a big house on 2 acres, and a 6 car garage for Nick not have us excited!?

So, please pray for our family, for this big decision, and for God to have his hand in it every step of the way.

On a side note: my heart loves our current home.  I feel like it is mine, even though it isn't.  It's not for sale, but even if it was, it isn't big enough for our growing family.  We moved here when Noah was one.  We brought the twins home from the hospital to this house.  Caleb was born here for crying out loud!  Our family has grown so much here, literally.  If, and when we move from this house, I will mourn it a little bit.  So also, could you please pray for my silly, sentimental soul?

Monday, July 18, 2011

Eight

Caleb is eight months old!
He's cutting his two top teeth!
 
He weighs 23 pounds!
He can't keep his hands out of his mouth!
He couldn't be more precious to us if he tried!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

My Mount Everest

We live atop the steepest hill in all of Rancho Cucamonga.  It's quite a view.
Seriously though, it's gotta be a 45 degree angle.  That's steep right?  I'm not so good in the math department. Whatever the angle, it is my excuse for not going on walks, which is pretty much the only form of exercise I have time for, with the kids in tow, of course.  Between the stroller and the kids, we're talking about 160 extra pounds for me to push up and down this hill.  Therefore, no exercise has been happening 'round these parts.  Hence the reason my butt is in the wrong hemisphere.  The southern one.  I prefer the northern.

Today, however, all of that changed.  Today was the first day I took all the boys on a walk to the park.  We are quite the sight.  Triple stroller, and a baby in a carrier.  "Are they all yours?" asked the neighbor.  "You've been busy."  "Why, yes.  Thank you for noticing.  You'd understand if you saw my husband."  Of course, I didn't actually say that. I would have liked to see the look on his face if I would have though!

Anyway, I am ashamed to say we totally cheated.  We went down the hill.  But Grammy met us at the park.  So when it came time to leave, we piled in her car, put the stroller in the trunk, and she drove up the hill.  Do you blame me?

Maybe tomorrow will be the day we make it down the hill, and up again.  It's time our hill became my excuse for being in shape, instead of out of shape!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

3 things

So much has been going on around here. I'll start with the least important factoid.

1) I chopped off my hair. Into a bob. Shorter than it's ever been. I pretty much love it. I suppose the fact that I love short hair on myself means I am getting older. That combined with the fact that I pulled a beautiful white hair from my head today.

2) We are contemplating moving to Pinon Hills. My mind really begins spinning when I think about this for too long.

There are so many benefits for our family when it comes to moving there, but then of course there are drawbacks as well. I love being close to my parents and so do the boys. I see my mom a few times a week, and it is nice knowing she is close by if I need her help, or if I want to drop by for an hour to let the boys play and chat. My mom watches the boys for me sometimes when I go to the store and such. In some ways I just can't picture my life living further away from her. I know it seem silly when we are talking 30 miles. It's pathetic, right? Some people live days away. But I am spoiled, and used to what we have.

So, that all sounds pretty negative. However, we could buy a house for SO much cheaper up there, and it would be much bigger and have much more land for our growing family. Not to mention practically all of Nick's family now lives up there, and all the moms stay at home, so we could all hang out.

Which leads me to the last, and most controversial point I wanted to make about all the things that have been going on around here.

3) I recently stumbled upon a lot of information regarding birth control and family planning. Or should I say the lack of birth control and family planning. As many people know, I have had it on my heart for a long time now to have a big family. It seems like every time Nick and I would talk about having more kids, I would increase the number I thought we should have by one. Or two. This desire of my heart lead me to find blogs and websites and books about families who let God plan their family sizes. Even though this idea is so counter-cultural, I began looking into it because it matched up with what is in my heart. The more I have looked into it and prayed about it the more sense it has started to make to me.

God made husbands and wives. He made our bodies, and he gave us desire for each other. The natural result of this is usually bearing children. His first commandment to husbands and wives was to be fruitful and multiply. It all started making sense to me. God says children are his blessing to us. Which other blessing that God offers to us do we seek to limit?

I believe that God is the same yesterday, today and forever. If this is true, then the current idea and trend to limit the number of children born to us is a result in a change in the culture, and not a result of a change in God's ideas about children.

Now, I totally understand that my natural inclination to want to have a large family makes me more open to this "radical", yet ancient way of thinking. It still scares me a little to be sure, because I am a planner. I want to plan my pregnancies. I want to avoid being pregnant in the summer months. I want to plan births for when I think it would be most convenient in relation to seasons, and activities such as homeschooling.

But.

Then I remember that I serve a God who loves me and my family and my children more than I do. I serve a God who knows everything, and created everything, and has my best interest at heart. He knows what I can handle. He knows when our family will be complete better than I do. Do I think I can plan our family better than He can!? If I say I trust Him, and if I say I lean not on my own understanding but on His, shouldn't this apply to every aspect of my life, and not just the parts I feel comfortable trusting Him?!

Anyways, I have loads more to say about this topic. Enough for now though! I will just say lastly that I began my search into this topic by reading a book called Family UnPlanning by Craig Houghton if anyone is interested. It's a really short book. Have a good day!

Monday, July 4, 2011

Fourth of July

Euclid Parade, Swimming with Jess, Fireworks at Aaron and Ashley's. God Bless America.

Although, Noah covered his ears while watching, and Micah and Levi went into the house they hated it so much. Levi said "cared" meaning scared. They were not fans! Micah did come out in the backyard with me for a bit and when he saw a far off firework that wasn't loud he said WOW!

Here we all are.  Note Levi's finger up his nose. 

Anyway, Caleb went down OK and fell asleep at their house, but was woken up by all the noise. I rocked him outside on the chair swing. He was so amazingly cuddly and warm, and fell asleep contentedly on me even though the fireworks were so loud. He watched them for a while with his head on my chest, and then just shut his eyes and went to sleep. It was bliss for mommy. He also fell asleep at the parade this morning in my sling, and he was gripping a flag for the whole nap! It was adorable!

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Micah is...

Micah is two and a quarter years old today. Wow, those last 3 months just flew right by! I feel like we just celebrated the boy's birthdays, but alas, time has past. I am always trying to capture a picture of Micah smiling at me, and I finally did the other day. Naturally, he was covered in some food substance, I think it was pizza sauce, but that's OK. It shows the true Micah. He is two, and he is a messy eater. He feeds himself though, and for this I am glad!

Micah is a fantastic singer at age 2. His singing is adorable. He sings "Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star", "You're More than Enough", and "Our God is Greater". And he can sing the days of the week song. I love that our house is filled with the singing of many small boys. It is a beautiful thing, and such a blessing. I pray our boys never stop singing praises to our King.

Micah STILL loves his silky blue blankie, and he STILL sucks his thumb. I don't mind. He is cute, and sweet, and he is STILL my baby.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Old school pool

Nick's Dad found this pool at a garage sale the other day, and he gave it to us to use. We had one like this when I was a kid. I like it because the kids can't press on the side and let all the water out. And by kids, I mean the twins. They kept doing it to our blow-up pool, and it was making Noah crazy, which in turn was making me crazy due to the screaming. Ah. No more screaming. At least not over the pool. Ha.

Caleb loves this pool a whole lot. He crawls all over it, and pulls himself up to the side, and splashes like crazy. He loves the water in general. He crawls into the bathroom when he hears me turn on the water to give baths! All of our babies have been water babies, and Caleb is no different!

The boys also adore the little water slide this pool has. And I adore watching them enjoy going down it. Life is good, espeically in the month of June. Yay for summer!

Monday, June 20, 2011

Cut the toy clutter!

Went through the backyard and house today, and threw away all the old and broken toys away. I still have a lot of toy organizing and donating to do, but it's a start. We have too many toys. They aren't even played with, but rather strewn everywhere. I am tired of cleaning them up. A new era in the Toy Kingdom is starting at the Swavely house. There are going to be a lot less loyal subjects than there used to be!

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Father's Day

We had a pretty relaxing day today. I made Nick his favorite breakfast today, but I didn't leave the eggs runny enough. Ooopps. We went to church in the morning and then went to Nick's parents house. My Dad is out of town, so of course we couldn't visit him. They are on their big road trip vacation to Florida!

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Seven months young

Seven months have gone by too fast my son, but we have enjoyed every minute! You now weigh just under 22 pounds, and are 28 and a half inches tall. People are always shocked when I tell them how old you are! You are such a big, strong boy for your age!
You can crawl. Everywhere! You especially like to crawl out the back door, trying your best to crawl after your brothers. You can pull up to standing on your knees. I came to get you up from your nap today, and there you were holding onto the crib rail and smiling at me. Needless to say, the crib mattress was immediately lowered! You also just started to try and cruise today, putting one little foot sideways and taking a step! Of course, by now you can sit by yourself very easily, for long periods of time, and you can even sit yourself up whenever you want to.
You also are really starting to enjoy solid foods! Carrots are your favorite. You also eat sweet potato, apples, peaches, bananas, (but only in small chunks, not pureed)and avocados. I bought squash to make for you, but I haven't gotten around to it yet. You just started wearing cloth diapers this week, and your fluffy tush couldn't look cuter in them!
My favorite thing of all about you though, is your amazing personality. You are the happiest baby, Caleb, and you bring so much joy to your family. You are starting to interact with your three big brothers so much, and you love trying to play with them. You are like our little ball of sunshine. Always smiling, always laughing. Your eyes are so bright, and full of curiosity, and I am thankful everyday that Jesus chose us to be your family.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

8th grade graduation and ramblings

Today Nat graduated from 8th grade! We got her flowers, and she was embarrassed! The kids played in the fountain outside of Panera bread. They loved it. Caleb slept in my sling while we walked across the parking lot to target to buy milk. The twin fell asleep on the car ride home, but luckily went back to sleep when I put them in their cribs. Noah went home with my mom. We went to mom's house after the twins nap, and I made Salmon tacos. Nick met us there after work. Caleb took three 45 minute naps today. He fell asleep while I nursed him for his afternoon nap, and I fell asleep right there with him. My favorite. I took an adorable picture of him wearing a super hero mask. Noah is adamant about not wanting to share his room with Micah and Levi, and he is adamant that he want a metal bunk bed, not a wood one! Where on earth did he get such a strong opinion about those two things? I thought he would like sharing a room, at least still at age 4! What the? I have eaten left-over ice cream cake every night since my birthday! I need to just throw it away, seriously!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Bunk beds and twinsies

I want to get bunk beds for Noah's room. I am planning to put one crib where the bottom bunk goes, and the other crib somewhere in there. Caleb has been waking @ 5:30ish every morning and won't go back to sleep. I think it is because he knows I am right there in the room, so I am thinking I should figure out a way for him to have his own room. The bunk bed idea is all I got, and there is no way I am taking the twins out of their cribs yet. Noooo wayyyy! Anyway, we are gonna try and find some on Saturday.

Caleb can officially babble things that sound like mama, dada, papa, baba. It is so adorable. He is so squishy. And so smiley. And so precious. He can also veyr nearly sit himself up. And if he is sat up, he can sit there for more than 5 minutes. My baby is growing so fast. He has 2 teeth now also. The second one came in May 13th. He rarely bits me while nursing.

Micah and Levi have been saying each others names for about a month. Levi says Mi-cAH, with a heavy emphasis on the AH! It sounds a bit like he has a Hebrew accent. Ha! Micah says Wevi. Actually they both say all 'L' sounds, like a 'W'. I love it. I looove hearing them call to each other. Levi kept calling out to Micah the other day at bedtime because Micah had already fallen asleep. "Micah, come on!" he kept saying it, over and over. Micah is so used to sleeping while Levi makes noise though, that he didn't wake up! It was so cute hearing Levi call for his brother!

The other day I was brushing Levi's teeth and he was looking at himself in the bathroom mirror. I said, who is that? And he took another look, smiled and said, "Micah!" Umm, I love him! It must be a little confusing....he's trying to figure out how a mirror works, but every time he look at Micah it is like he IS looking in a mirror! How is a 2year old supposed to understand that!

The twins have started asking "why" about everything! I can't believe it starts this soon! Levi also says, "A different one". He said this when he wanted a different bottle (I mean sippy cup, right, cause I totally weaned them from the bottle already) because the nipple had too big of a slit in it! He also said it when he wanted buckled in the front car seat instead of the back one. The twins BOTH still eat playdough, and crayons! Why?! I have no idea! Are they missing some sort of vitamins?!

Monday, May 23, 2011

28 is great!

Today is my birthday, and we went to Chick-fil-a for lunch!  Nick took the day off, which he always does on my birthday!  What a nice hubby!  Anyway, I got a slice of cheescake in honor of myself (Ha!), and it was so good.  The boys got to play in the play area, and I got to snuggle Caleb.  You can see a little bit of my blad spot in this picture!  Ha!  Thank you pregnancy hormones!  Caleb is worth 100 blad spots, hand down!  Man, I love six months old!  We also had the fam over for dinner, and most importnantly ice cream cake, which is my favorite.  So bad, yet so good!  Twenty eight is going to be the best yet!  I am blessed with an amazing family, and I thank God for them!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Caleb is 6 months old today!

Caleb weighs 20 pounds 14 ounces, is 28 inches long, and has a head circumference of 17 and 3/4 inches. This puts him in the 90th percentile for weight, 87th percentile for height, and the 74th percentile for head size.

He is a BIG boy!

We waited until 6 months to start any solid food, so up to this point he has been entirely breastfed! I do feel a sense of pride and satisfaction knowing all of his healthy growth has come right from his mama's milk! Daddy decided to feed Caleb some bananas without me for his very first food, so I didn't get a picture! But, I fed him some avacado the next day, which is what I had intended his first food to be, and I took these pictures. So, it was his second bite! He wasn't a huge fan, but I know he will get the hang of it before long! I love my littlest man!

Caleb is really growing physically and taking off mentally too! He is still the happiest guy around, and barely fusses even though he has just broken his first two teeth! The first one came out the day after Easter, April 25th, and the second one made it appearance May 13th. The bottom front two, of course!

Caleb also rolled from back to tummy for the first time on Easter, and now rolls like crazy all over! And he started sitting unassisted for up to a minute or more in the last week! He also started getting on his hands and knees, rocking back and forth, and even pushing himself up to a push up position! He is VERY strong! Just a few days ago Daddy stood Caleb up next to our baby/toddler rocking chair, and he stood holding on to that thing for a few minutes!


He also started babbling mama, and baba, despite Daddy's best effort to get him to say dada! I, of course, love his choice for his first babble! He also loves blowing raspberries, and spitting up a storm. He is learning to use his mouth in so many ways, including biting on everything he can get his chubby little hands on! He gives me a chomp every now and then while nursing, but I just detach him when he does it, so he will know not to do that!

With so many changes going on, Caleb had a rough couple of weeks of napping, but things are starting to get back on track! He takes 2 or 3 naps a day, and sleeps about 12 hours at night, waking up twice to eat between 6:30 pm, and 6:30 am. I am pretty happy with his sleeping overall!

So, as you can see by this giant list of the things he learned in only the last two weeks, he has gone through SOO many changes! Too many, too quickly for my taste, but so much fun to watch all the same!
I have a strong feeling he will be learning to crawl sometime this month, and then my house will be even messier than it is now! Is that even possible!?

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Soon: Birthday, Wedding, Easter

Got spray tanned today at Jess and Mike's new house! Then ate dinner with them...spicey pasta yum! Levi got the vacuum plug stuck in the hole in the wall today, but Nick got it out. I swore we would have to rip a bigger hole in the wall to get it out, but he got it out no problem of course! Those boys! Some days I think they conspire against me on purpose! Love them tough! Crazy messes and all! Mom bought me knee socks and a neon green hair scrunchy today! Only 2 more days until Nick's 30th birthday, and 3 more days until Jess's wedding, and 4 days until Easter! What a busy weekend! So fun! I am so excited! :)

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Flipping over, pushing up and speaking out!

Just this past week Caleb started flipping from his tummy to his back a few times. I would go to get him up from his nap, and he would be smiling up at me from his back, even though I put him down for his nap on his belly!

Then, just yesterday he was trying to push up on his hands and knees a little bit when I had him on his tummy! I was so shocked to see him do this already, and I got a little teary! My baby is already getting so big! And yet he is still soooo little!

Now today when I layed him down for bed he kept flipping to his back! I went in twice to flip him back on his tummy, but he wouldn't stay put! Finally he fell asleep in his back, on his own! Considering he hasn't slept on his back in over 2 months, I am pretty happy it only took a few times of flipping him over, and a tiny bit of fussing for him to fall asleep on his back. I didn't think he would do that well! Anyway, we will see what kind of naps he will have tomorrow! I am hoping they don't go terribly! Fingers crossed!

Oh yes, he also scoots backwards! I had him on my bed on his tummy, and he wiggles and pushes around, scooting himself backwards as he does it. He went backwards from one end of the bed to the other in just a few minutes! Before long he will be on the go, and I am gonna be in trouble! ;)

I have to report also that Noah cracks me up, and I love how he says things. Sometimes I don't realized the cute way he pronounces things because I am so used to hearing him say it that way! Today I noticed he says:
Some instead of thumb. He also still says free for three, and fink for think, and grill for girl.
We were talking about honeymoons today at bedtime, and he called it a moonhoney! I giggled so hard on the inside! He is so sweet, and curious, and smart! He notices everything, even subtle things like peoples moods.
He told me I hurt his feelings tonight because I snapped at him to not come back out of the bathroom until he went poddy! I don't want to hurt my little boy's feelings, and he helped me realize how sensitive he can be!
He will randomly tell me he loves me, and call me his best mommy ever.
He asked me yesterday, "We don't like being sick, right mom!?"
He still loves me to tell him stories at bedtime, sing him "more than enough", and watch him at the door for "1 more minute".
We were talking about loosing teeth, and about how he would grow big teeth, and he said he didn't want to grow big teeth! I said I didn't want him to either! I am glad we are on the same page with this whole growing up thing!

Oh, how I will miss my little boys when they are all grown up!!!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Letter to Caleb

Caleb,
One of my favorite things is nursing you to sleep at night. I love cuddling up next to you in bed, smelling your sweet little head while you contentedly nurse, feeling your little hands touch my face, so comfy, so peaceful, so warm. You are starting to fall asleep less often by the end of our bedtime session now, but for a few months there you would fall asleep every time. If you are still awake when we are done, I just lay you down in your crib on your tummy, you pop up on your hands and smile at me, then lay your little head down, and go to sleep. I cherish these little moments now more than ever.

I have seen how fast they dissapear.

I never imagined I would still be feeding a baby during the night by almost 5 months, but here we are, and you know what!? I don't mind a bit, and even look forward to when I get to tuck you in next to me during the wee hours for a little milk. This baby phase is so fleeting, so precious, and I am soaking up every drop of you. I love you sweet boy, my fourth son, and my little sunshine.

Love, Mommy

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Wacky Weather and a Wedding

Seriously, this weird spring weather needs to make up it's mind! Rain and cold, then 90 degrees, and now rain and cold again! We had just enough of a taste of the warm weather to make me long for summer, and now it's gone again! Boo! Allison's wedding is tomorrow! I am super nervous about leaving Caleb being over an hour away, and I am toying with the idea of taking him. I am actually quite seriously considering it! I really don't want to leave him. The only reason I don't want to take him is that I don't want to disturb his sleep. But I am afriad he will wake to nurse for comfort and be pissed if my mom tries to give him a bottle. We should have tried it before, but we didn't. We shall see. The boys are all getting colds again. I am at my wits end about it, because it is all because of church. EVERY time we go they get sick. Then we wait until they are better, miss one sunday, go back, and it all starts over again. We are getting really tired of the cycle! Why do people bring their sick kids to church. I think it's rude!

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Weekend

We got a lot of cleaning and organizing done this weekend, the main thing being the garage! What a relief to finally have it cleaned out! We were beginning to look like hoarders! ha!

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Happy Birthday Boys!

Today our sweet boys turn 4 and 2! It's so cliched, I know, but I can't believe they are already 4 and 2. It goes by so, so fast. Like a blink. It is such a blessing watching them grow, and I will always have the memories (and the pictures!) of their babyhood. They are still babies to me anyway! We took all the boys on the Metrolink today to Union Station in LA, then on the subway, and finally on a bus ride all the way to the Science Museum! It was quite the adventure, let me tell you! Grammy and Papa came with us...it was definately an adventure that required one adult per child! The boys always hear the train whistle from our backyard, and until today they thought it was the train at Victoria Gardens, but now they know better! Noah was so excited to see the train pull up at the station, and it was just priceless watching him experience seeing a real train for the first time! I love sharing this stuff with my kids...it's like getting to experience it for the first time all over again! I love that! When we finally got to the museum, they had a really cool little exhibit for kids that had a pretend little house, complete with a kitchen, living room, bedroom, and backyard with a garden! The kids loved it! They also had an awesome aquarium exhibit with an under water tunnel, and a touch pool. They had a little dive show as well, where we got to see a scuba diver in the tank. The kids seemed to like it, and the diver gave them a high five on the wall of the glass tank! Caleb did really good all day, and just took his naps in my sling! He slept and nursed while we rode trains, subways, and buses! I love that he is so flexible! It allows us to take the kids places and not always stay home for naps. I love my sweet baby! The twins were so tired as we began out trek back home, that they fell asleep on the city bus! Nick was holding Levi, and Papa was holding Micah in a carrier, and they just passed out! It was hot, crowded, and loud, but it made no difference! I was glad they at least got a little nap! We were all definately tired at the end of the day, but it was worth it seeing the boys faces watching the trains, and looking out the windows at the city going by! They loved it, and it made for a memorable birthday! Happy Birthday my little loves!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Last day of three and one!

We had such a fun day on the last day before the boys birthday! I decided to take the plants out of the planter box and put sand into it for the boys to play with instead. I was just going to thrown the plants away, but mom was over and she re-planted them all on the hill! Now we have a whole little strawberry patch on the hill and the kids can't reach them as easily to pick them while they are still green! We also have rosemary and oregano on the hill now too.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

He found his feet today!

Foot-grabbing is one of my very favorite things, and Caleb is one of my very favorite babies, so today was pretty much one of my very favorite days.



Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Breaking news...


I realized today that I almost have actual footage of Micah fracturing his foot. Actually the 5th metatarsal on his right foot, if you want to get technical. I stopped filming about 60 seconds before he got hurt so I could go inside and finish making dinner. Mothers don't encourage their small children in activities that may break bones, right? But there I am in the background encouraging them, recording them even! In my defense, you can hear me tell them to go go go go go jump be careful! Ah well, I'm not sweating it too much! As much as I want to, I can't protect my children from everything in life, and their picnic table jumping antics seemed harmless enough. Boys will be boys, right?!

Anyway, the day he actually broke it was last Tuesday, March 15. We took him to Kaiser on Thursday, March 17 and they x-rayed his foot at that time. The Dr. told us it looked like there was no fracture, and that he just sprained and bruised his foot.
Then I get a phone call Monday morning, the 21st, saying he actually has a fracture, and can I bring him in right away for a cast! WHAT?! I really was in disbelief that it took them that long to let us know our toddler's foot has a fracture requiring a cast! I am still trying to get down to the bottom of why it would take them so many days to let us know this! We just switched to Kaiser the first of the year, and I am not very happy so far.
Then today I spent about an hour on the phone with Kaiser trying to procure a "boot" for Micah to wear over the cast so he can walk around without slipping and slidding all over the place on our laminate flooring. They keep giving me the run around about which Dr. needs to order the boot, and then finally they find information saying that Micah isn't supposed to be bearing any weight on his foot. A day has now past since he has gotten the cast on, and finally someone bothers to tell me he isn't supposed to be walking on it. So it took 5 days after his initial appointment for me to get the full story about his condition and treatment. Ridiculous. And how on earth can I possibly get an almost 2 year old to not bear weight on his foot. Riiiiiight.
The best part about this whole ordeal is how absolutely sweet and cooperative Micah has been throughout. Seriously, he is such a sweetheart. He didn't move a muscle during the x-ray, and then held his leg up perfectly still while two big male cast putter-oners, put on his cast. No crying, kicking, or screaming for this laid-back dude. He doesn't mind the cast one bit, and he has a smile on his face to prove it!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

St. Patrick's Day

Made green pancakes for breakfast this morning. Nick stayed home from work so we could take Micah to the Dr. to see about his foot. They took an x-ray of his foot, and there was nothing broken! Thank you Jesus! I was not relishing the idea of Micah's foot in a cast! He was sooo good during the whole appointment! I think he really enjoyed having some time with most of mommy and daddy's attention. I had Caleb with me but he was asleep. It was really nice to just have one big kid with us to give attention as well. It felt like a break! Imagine having 2 kids under two at a Dr. appointment feeling like a break! ha ha!

Then tonight I made corned beef and cabbage for dinner, and Mom and Dad and Nat came over to share it with us. Gale came over as well, but she left before we ate it! Yum! Last year I made it for the first time, and I remember not liking it. This year I realize I didn't like it last year because I was about 5 and a half weeks pregnant with Caleb and my morning sickness was just about to start, so I think that had a whole lot to do with why I didn't like it! This year I thought it was pretty tasty!

I took these pictures of Caleb today, and I love them. His eyes are beautiful and his skin is so soft and perfect. Ah, my baby!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Wednesday

Mom got home from Ohio today and came over first thing in the morning to see us! The kids were so excited and so was I! We really missed her! We got to check out her car, which somone hit yesterday when Dad was on his way to pick her up at the airport! Bummer! Noah said, "Now Grammy's car is ugly!"

It was nice and warm today, and the kids played outside a lot. Then later on in the afternoon Noah wanted me to make popcorn and we watched a cartoon. We just put the corn into a brown bag and microwave it, add a little olive oil and salt, and yum! He loves hearing it pop! When the twins woke from their nap, we made more so they could have some and they loved it too! Then they promptly removed their diapers and ran through the backyard half-naked while eating their popcorn. They are nuts! :)

Micah hurt his poor little foot yesterday, and he is still saying it hurts today and favoring the other foot a little bit, so we are taking him to the Dr. tomorrow to make sure he didn't break anything. He was jumping off of the picnic table onto the giant cheese when he hurt it. Poor baby.

The twins are talking so much, and adding so many words to their vocab by the day. Levi talks a little but more than Micah right now. He will repeat any word you say pretty much, and Micah will just look at you and blush when you ask him to repeat words sometimes. Levi can say "Micah" and "Noah" really good now. It is soo cute how he says it. They both also started saying "es" which is yes. I love the way toddlers learning to speak say things!

Noah still says things that are so cute as well. I love how he says "f" for "th"...like "I am free" (three), and he says "grill" instead of girl, and tonight he told me we needed to clean out the garage because it was a "zaster" (distaster)! I love it, and I don't want to forget the sweet, innocent way that they all speak! :)
Caleb has been using his hands like crazy the last few days! He can't stop grabbing things, and putting things in his mouth. His hands and fingers, toys, or even my chin. It doesn't matter what it is, he just wants to bite it! He is starting to bite the occasional "button" now too! Ouch!

Friday, March 11, 2011

Today's Special

Who says
there can be
too many cooks
in the kitchen?








Monday, March 7, 2011

Cheeks

The only time
in life

when chubby cheeks

are one of your best features.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Crocs

I am such a fan of Crocs now it is ridiculous.I am an even bigger fan of the boy wearing the Crocs.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

So


So sweet.

So cute.


So stinker.

So silly.

So Noah!