August 18, 2014

Our FIRST first day of school

Well, I thought I was going to hold it together. I did great showing face in front of him. I did good walking out with Wes. Then, I made the mistake of calling my mom and the water works turned on! What is it about a phone call to your mom that does that?

Andrew started 4K today! He is going to a Christian program at a local church. He goes 2 days a week, all day. From 9-3. (or 9:15 to 3:15... I'm still a little confused). I thought the school was perfect for him because it's main focus is learning through play. Sure, he'll do some worksheets, but it was important to me that the curriculum wasn't a crack the whip type. And, for us, it's a plus that learning about God and talking about him is a part of the day.

He did great this morning! His main concern before leaving the house was how Wes would be without him. I overheard a pep talk Andrew was giving him.  "It will be okay Wes. I have to go to school, but you don't have to be scared without me. You will be with mommy all day and I'll be with lots of new friends. I'll see you when you come to pick me up". I'm not sure where Andrew's huge, loving heart came from, but I pray it never changes.
When going in, they are to use the restroom, put their book bags in their cubby, grab the folder and have a seat. Goodbyes are done in the hallway. Which, fine fine, I guess is a good thing. I can see how me going in the room would make things more difficult. I may not have ever left!

It felt strange walking out with just Wes. I all of a sudden couldn't remember what it was like to have one kid. An 18 month old at that! What did I do with Andrew at that age?? We came home and played outside before the temperatures reached hell-ish levels. We had a snack and watched an episode of Team Umizoomi. Did our shape sorting. Colored. Changed a stinky diaper. Spun around in circles until he was falling all over the place and giggling. He yelled at me to make lunch, so I complied. (serious). We read some books and he is now down for a nap.
One benefit to this whole school thing - I have a kid with me who is guaranteed to nap! I exercised, straightened up the house, have cookies baking and LOOK!! - I'm blogging.

I really do miss him. Like heart hurting miss him. I've had to hide my phone from myself once or twice to stop myself from calling and checking in on him. It's a scary thing to entrust your children with someone else when they've depended on no one but you for almost 4 years. Well I guess it's scary anytime. I've spent a lot of time in prayer and have been reminded that he is in God's hands. I know I'm not supposed to worry. I've prayed for peace in my heart because I'm not supposed to live in fear. I've prayed for his safety and well-being. For him to have FUN and make great friends. For his teacher to have a soft, loving heart and for her sanity :)

I can't wait to hear all about his day.. if he'll tell me about it!

April 1, 2014

Half a Year

Isn't it funny that when you're in the thick of something difficult, something you may not be particularly excited about, 6 months can feel like a lifetime. Or when you are excitedly anticipating something 6 months away, it may feel excruciating.
But if it's the opposite... if you're happily moving through life, if everything is as it should be, time flies faster than the speed of light. It seems to go just as fast if something you dread is coming up in 6 months.

I'm having a hard time grasping the fact that Trey has been in the states for about 6 and a half months and back with our family for just about 6 months. A half of a year. In some ways, it seems like such a long time. It feels like he was never gone. We've had little quirks we've had to work out, but in most ways, in the important ways, he just fit right back in and him being away doesn't even seem like it was a real thing. (I'm sure he would say differently)

When I think about the rhythm we've fallen into, our day-to-day life, it feels like it's been a long time. When I carelessly and without a second thought shoot him a text during the day or he calls during lunch, I feel like we've been doing that forever. When we settle down to watch our shows at night (or A show.. let's be real.. we're too tired to stay up past 9) it sure doesn't feel like there was this big blip in time where we didn't do that. *Fun fact, he was just sitting next to me, reading this and spilled his very cold water all over my lap. Like it jumped out of his hand and splashed all over me. And he laughed (while apologizing). Are you supposed to want to strangle your husband that's only been home 6 months??*

But it's ONLY been 6 months.
These two have only known each other for that long. And you'd never guess it. They are thick as thieves. That little boy's eyes light up when he sees his Daddy. Both boys wait anxiously by the door when they known he's come home. The time has just flown by. Six months is nothing and yet I sometimes already find myself taking his presence for granted.

It sure didn't seem like a small amount of time while he was gone. It seemed impossible. It was miserable at times. Time crawled slower than a snail. And now I find myself wanting it to slow down just a little. Time is a relative little thing, isn't it?

March 17, 2014


I have coffee and sleeping kids. Could it be any better? I don't think so.

Last year there was so much going on while Trey was gone that I couldn't write about. I would sign on here and try to write, but I just can't be fake. I couldn't come on and talk about shallow things when there was so much going on. All this to say, I'm just going to write about where I'm at. It won't always be witty and light-hearted. But hopefully, there will be lots of that thrown in.

I'm a sucker for a resolution. I love the feeling of the new year and all of the promises that come along with it. A fresh start. But I've learned over the past 10 years or so that, well, they just don't usually stick. I heard a statistic on the radio the other day that only 8% of people actually keep their resolution. Why do we start this one day out with such high hopes and motivation, only to go back to hold habits in what? 2 weeks?

So I didn't do it this year, per say. I made goals, yes, but I didn't promise myself any one absolute thing. This year I was going to focus on growing as a person in general. And I think I'm off to a good start.

Did I need to lose weight? My God yes. My body looks like.. ya know.. two kids popped out of it in the past three years. There is that. But I knew I could be doing so much more to be HEALTHY. And it's hard to not compare yourself to others, am I right? I feel like I'm SURROUNDED by women who bounce back after pregnancy. I see it everywhere. But really, I don't know how hard they may work to get there. All I knew was how hard I was not working.
While Trey was gone last year, I was doing really well with my eating habits. I was sticking to clean, real foods. I loved it and my body loved me for it. I was also doing Body Pump at the gym. And then.. well.. he came home and it all went out the window. Now my resolve has been gone. At the beginning of the year, I started a program called Bikini Body Mommy and I've loved it. I've worked hard at it, but I haven't been eating the way I should have been. I'm stronger and healthier, and that is great, but I know I can push myself harder. I know I can feel more comfortable in my skin. So I'm working on it. I'm improving. I'm not where I need to be, but that's okay. I'm getting there.

I also wanted to grow in my walk as a Christian. We're doing something now that we've never done since getting married. We've found a church that we love and we go (excuse the pun) religiously. I'm also going to PWOC every week and I love it. I'm purposefully surrounding myself around godly women. I'm praying more. I'm learning more. I know more about the old testament than I ever have thanks to PWOC. But I know my heart can do better. I'm doing all the right things on the outside, but I know my heart needs to be worked on.
The idea of getting re-baptized has recently been on my heart.. strongly. I started going to church with a friend in middle school and somewhere in those years, was baptized, though I don't remember if I did it for the right reasons. Did I really understand what I was doing? I can say for sure that nothing changed for me afterwards. I didn't spend my teenage years following Christ, that's for sure. So I'm doing some soul searching and wondering if that is something I need to do again... knowing for sure why I'm doing it. Either way, I'm letting God work and mold my heart this year. And every year to come.

I'm trying to accept myself for where and what I am. I've always struggled with comparing myself to others, but I'm learning to be okay with ME. It's my life and my walk, I can't live it for anyone else. It's taken me a very long time to learn this. But I'm getting there. With everything. I may be taking extreme baby steps, I'm progressing in everything I've set out to progress in, and I would call that a win!

March 13, 2014

I WILL write more. I WILL write more. I WILL write...

Promises promises. I tell myself them all the time. I will find the time. I miss writing. I'll do better, I promise. I have great intentions, I do. But then things get in the way. Like those two children who want to play with me. Dirty dishes and that dust that will not go away. Lack of sleep urges me to nap if I never find the chance. That little nagging voice in the back of my head (hi God) that says, "oh hey.. you still have 16 more pages to read out of this week's chapter for church. You promised you'd do that too". Then that silly promise I made myself about working out for 90 days.

So much to do. So very little time.

But this is such a creative outlet for me and I have been missing it my friends. I never realize how much until I sit down to type. It clears my mind. Makes me feel all good inside. Keeps my brain working. Let's face it. I'm just not being challenged enough by making animal noises, trying to remember those dern shapes and colors, or tracing letters.

So here goes another promise to myself. 30 days of straight writing (not including weekends.. or maybe weekends.. who knows). I won't lie, sometimes I'll probably need topic prompts, but I do have a few things I want to write about. Like how we have no clue what this year is going to hold for us. Or how one of my very best friends is leaving us in just a few short weeks and how devastated not only I will be, but my kids as well. How I've tried to grow myself this year so far and how much of a work in progress I am. My new found appreciated for being a stay-at-home-mama and how I really have been taking this time in my life for granted.

So hopefully I still have a few readers out there. It's hard to brush the dust off and get going again, isn't it? I'm going to give it my all! I'll throw in cute kid pictures to entice you!
Morning Cartoons (this is a rare thing.. the stillness.. so I had to capture it)

After Run or Dye this past weekend. It was cold and hell-ish.

February 19, 2014

My Baby is ONE

I know I have slacked majorly with writing about Wes. To be fair, I just haven't been blogging like I used to. But I won't waste time with excuses.. he'll just have to be reassured about how loved he is when he scours the interwebs, looking for blog posts on himself.

Wesley turned one two Saturdays ago, on the 25th of January. We had a small get together with some friends. I didn't go all out like I did with Andrew, but that's okay. We had fun, we celebrated Wes' life, and ate some delicious food, and Wes had his first cupcake. All was well.

Wes, you are such an awesome little boy! You are alike your brother in a few ways, but you are definitely your own person.. and I LOVE that. You two are alike in that you love a routine. You have the same sleep patterns (Thank you God.. seriously). You don't like to be away from Mommy or Daddy. You love most food. You have a sweet disposition. You hit milestones when you are good and ready to. And your favorite cartoon is Team Umizoomi.
There are also things that make you very much Wes, though. When you aren't teething or sick, you are so calm and content. You are very laid back. You're more independent and as long as you know we are in your general vicinity, you feel comfortable to explore and play on your own. (It took Andrew much longer to do that). While you enjoy food, you're a little more picky than your brother was. You won't let us help you eat, but you won't yet use utensils either. So it has to be something you can pick up, which means you have to approve of the consistency of it. If it makes your hands too messy, you won't eat it... 

I don't have official measurements, because, well I won't go into how difficult it is to get an appointment at our doctor's office, but you are smaller than your brother was. And that is just fine. We happen to think you are pretty perfect. 

You are all around just a joy to be around! 
You love balls. You will throw them and chase them, play catch with us, roll them around the house. Anything with balls is a hit. Also, anything your brother is playing with. You love to be outside. You thoroughly enjoy music, and always have. You wave hi and bye. No words yet, not even a mama or dada, but I don't think your brother had yet either. Your favorite person is your Daddy. If he is around, you want him and no one else. Which is pretty amazing seeing as how you've only known each other for five months! 

You are wearing size 18 clothes all around. 
Size 3 shoes (close to a 4). 
Size 5 diapers. 
You're slowly moving your bedtime to 6:30-7, but up until now have always gone to bed between 5:30 and 6. Which means the time you wake up in the morning is moving from 6 to 7 (praise). 
You are still taking two naps when you can, but can be stretched if absolutely necessary, though it's not fun. 

Don't let the lack of blog posts fool you, Wesley. The three of us are head over heals in love with you!

January 22, 2014

Andrew's Heart

Warning: I'm going to use this space to do nothing but gush about my kid! I'm a mom, I have the right and it would be weird if I didn't, yes?

I've always believed that Andrew was a very special child. Not in just a typical way, but that there was a little something extra going on with him. And I know, what parent doesn't, right? I've never been able to quite put my finger on it, but maybe an understanding of things beyond his years. Or a sensitivity to people that would really allow him to do something great with his life.

Since we've moved away from family again, we've put ourselves out into the community a lot more. While we were in Texas, Andrew was just far too clingy to allow for many others to care for him, so I nurtured that. Aside from hourly care here and there, we didn't do much that required him to be in someone else's care. But coming here, I was determined. I needed to get more involved, not only for my own sanity, but for the boys' happiness and well-being as well. So not going to PWOC was not an option. Church was going to be a given every week. They were going to have to adjust.

And now I'm hearing how others are seeing Andrew and it's (one) making my heart melt and (two) causing me to become so much more aware of how I need/want to guard his heart.

Last night, we had one of Andrew's Sunday school teachers from church come over to babysit. Her and her sister have told me frequently how much they enjoy having Andrew in their class, so when I found out about an "optional" (ha!) function Trey had and that spouses were "highly encouraged to attend", they were the first people I thought of. Luckily, she was more than happy to do it.

When I got home last night, we chatted for a while and, I admit, I shed a few happy, proud tears while she was talking about our son.
At the start of Sunday school, they do praise time. They play music and let the kids sing and dance. There are younger and older kids together during this time, so while some (the younger) really enjoy it, some of the older ones are in that, "this is stupid" phase. Ms. J (that's what we're calling his teacher/babysitter) said that they use Andrew as an example frequently. That he just runs in there and dances like, forgive the cliche, no one is watching. That he is just giving his all to God and he doesn't care what anyone else thinks. That he is the epitome of having a childlike faith and sometimes encourages those older ones who may think it's a little silly to get up and dance anyways.
She told me about a little three year old girl that came in one morning for the first time. She was visibly scared and unsure, understandably. Andrew walked right up to her and said, "my name is Andrew, do you want to be my friend?". She took his hand and they danced together until is was time to go into their classroom. She sat down next to him and he then told the teachers that she was his new friend and he would help her do everything.
I was so speechless and taken aback. That is exactly the way I want him to be.

There are times when I pick him up from childcare from PWOC and they'll tell me a little something like how polite he was, or how he insists on helping them clean up.

I make it a point to do my workouts around him sometimes, because it opens up the whole living healthy conversations. Sometimes I'm visibly hurting or struggling, like yesterday. At three years old, he cares enough to stop what he's doing, come over and attempt to do the exercise with me and says, "Here mom, I 'll do it with you. Maybe then you won't hurt as much". It was all I could to not quit and just love on him.

There are just a very few examples, but they completely cover who he is. There are a few downsides to this.. like how sensitive he is. Super sensitive. It doesn't take much to make him cry. Which is totally fine here at home with us. But all of these qualities that I've praised about him, I'm afraid will also cause him to get picked on growing up. And really, that's fine. I know every kid, at some point, is going to get picked on. And for my kids, if it's going to happen, I hope it's because they are going out of their way to be kind. Or for being themselves, without caring what others think. Or for loving God totally and whole-heartedly.
It's been an eye opening experience to see how others view him. It's made me be very aware of what I want to pray over him about. I pray that his heart NEVER changes. I pray that if he faces criticism, that he has enough strength and faith to withstand it and not let it change him. I pray that he continues to love people for who they are, without giving it a second thought. I pray that God gives me the wisdom and the words to encourage all of these things in him. I just pray that I do this whole parenting thing right! He is a truly special person and I hope I never screw that up!

January 8, 2014

I Dislike Wordpress

I tried out Wordpress, trying to get my writing mojo back, and it really just made it worse. I don't like it at all. Blogger is more familiar and comfortable. Honestly, I was almost ready to stop blogging all together. I hardly have the time and when I do, I don't have the mental energy to spit out something interesting and witty. But this weekend I was getting pictures organized for scrapbooking, and looking back on past blogs to help me remember what was important in that time frame. It was such a big help and a ton of fun to go back and read about what was going on in our family! So I don't think I'm ready to throw in the towel. I think I'm finally just ready to truly do this for myself. I don't know if anyone is still following me here, but I'd love for our family and friends to follow along and see what's going on in our lives.

The holidays have passed and we're now into 2014. We had a really nice and quiet holiday season. For the first time since we moved away from family, 5 years ago, we stayed put. While it was sad at times, I'm convinced that we made the right decision. There was no rushing around. We were able to keep the boys on their schedule and enjoy the quiet. Trey was still off of work, even though we didn't leave, so we were able to have lots of quality time together. The kids were able to wake up in their own house on Christmas morning and we started our own traditions.
Making cookies on Christmas Eve
Matching Christmas jammies
Little Christmas morning bottle action
Andrew made a move on him in his new car

 New Years Eve was super quiet. We hung out at the house, got Chinese food take out, put the boys to bed and watched the NYE festivities going on around the world. However, we did force ourselves to stay up to midnight. Actually, I forgot. We stayed up until 11. Watch the ball drop from the Eastern Time Zone and called that a win!

While all of that time together was nice, I'm glad we are back into the normal swing of things. Trey has been super busy with school work. This week he has an 8-page paper and a briefing due. He has to turn both in on Saturday. Yes, Saturday class. That's as fun for him as you can imagine. His CCC (Captains Career Course) lasts until the end of May. We aren't yet sure where we'll be going after that, but should find out by early February. We are going to try and stay here actually, but you never know. I know he'll be glad when some of the uncertainty is gone.

We went back to PWOC today.. it was good for my soul! We've been out for a few weeks during the holiday and I realized just how essential that group of ladies is in my life. I feel refreshed and whole again after meeting this morning. Not only for myself, but it's great for the boys too. Andrew is having a blast there. His friend, Annabelle, was there with him this morning. He was so excited to see her in PWOC! I was told how helpful he was with cleanup and how well he did in general. The sweet woman that was with him when I picked him up, gushed about him for a little. Not only did he do so well, but she talked about how much fun it was for her to play the grandma role. The little one was sleeping in another woman's arms when I walked in. So, obviously he was pretty comfortable as well. And me.. it was refreshing to be back with my friends and learning more about the Bible. It's so nice to be able to befriend so many woman, of all age ranges, that all strive to put God first. I could go on and on about my love for that group, but this was supposed to be brief! I'm putting the boys into childcare on post one day a week for a few hours thanks to the urging of my husband to get some time to myself. I'm extremely, extremely nervous about this! I've joined the spouses club here and will be going to my first luncheon next week.

Andrew is enjoying playing with the new toys he got for Christmas. He's infatuated with the cartoon character Daniel Tiger and is now insisting that we call him Daniel. He's really into tracing letters and numbers, coloring, doing small puzzles, and as always, his cars. He's beginning to venture into Spiderman, which is fun. We are going to be signing him up to play his first sport that will start in March. We haven't decided yet between soccer or T-ball!

Wes is almost a year old. He's very curious about everything. Loves to walk holding onto our fingers, but I think is no more than a month away from walking on his own. I pray that I'm not wrong about that! He loves to play with anything that is a ball. He loves his walker, but not for the walking purposes. Only for the lights and music. He loves to throw things (doesn't matter what) and chase it by crawling. He's hard to feed right now because he doesn't want purees, but there's not a lot he can do finger food wise.  He has 7 teeth and is working on two more, so that's fun!

And I think that is all! I yet again hope to write a little more often, but I'm not promising myself anything...