Friday, March 25, 2011

The laundry basket

It's been one of those weeks around our house.  Things have just been a little off.  Daddy had to work late more nights than not.  Addi has another ear infection and is pretty much in a terrible mood.  Our dog has an ear infection as well and has been waking us up in the middle of the night scratching her ears.  And Miss Alexa Jayne has been testing her boundaries all week long (a typical occurance for a two year old I hear).  All of these things combined have made for a pretty grouchy momma!  We even tried to get photos of the girls taken this week, and after our first attempt ended in diaster, we rescheduled for another day.  Well, round two didn't end much better.  Addi would scream everytime I put her down to have her photo taken.  Of course, Alexa was a little ham is loved every second of it.  I sooooooo badly wanted at least one good picture of my girls together, but Addi just wasn't having it.  When things get like this, I find it so easy to only focus on the negative about it all.  I get so wrapped up in our messed up schedules, the INSANELY dirty house (yes, its that dirty if it is actually bothering me), and a failed photo attempt, that I just can't see God's glory in it all.

{SIDE NOTE:  Speaking of the defiant 2 year old, as I am typing this she is in her bed refusing a nap.  I went in her room and told her she was going to go to time out if she didn't lay down and take a nap.  Her response was, "OK, Mommy!  Time out and then NO NAP!"  She was so excited to have another option rather than taking a nap!  Lord, help us!}

Anyway, back to the point.....

So, yesterday, after I had been throwing a pity party all day, I was trying to get some things accomplished around the house.  As I was folding laundry, both girls decided it was time to wake up from their nap.  I had laundry strung from one end of the couch to the other.  So, I got them both up and tried to finish folding.  With the assistance of my little 'helper' (said with sarcasim), I was able to get it all folded.  So, with Addi on my hip, I went to put all of the laundry away.  Alexa was watching Wonder Pets so I thought I had everything under control.  Well as soon as I was done putting it all away, I came in the living room to find this....

Alexa had found a black crayon and decided to make the laundry basket her canvas.  My first instinct was anger, as we have been working on the concept of ONLY coloring on paper that Mommy gives you.  But, before I could get anything out of my mouth, I just had to laugh.  She was soooooo proud of herself.  She couldn't be more excited to show off her work of art.  It was at that moment, I felt my heart grow tender and flood with emotion.   It was one of those moments that I will play back in my mind forever.  One that I have taken a mental picture of and will cherish for years to come.

That one simple moment reminded me that life won't be like this forever.  One day, I won't have my sick baby clinging to me and wanting me to hold her all day long.  Instead, she will want to go the doctor all by herself and handle it on her own.  One day, her tears won't be because of an ear infection or because she got put in time out.  Instead, they will be over a boy who broke her heart or a friend who hurt her feelings.  One day, I won't have to figure out the best ways to discpilne my toddler who is testing the boundaries.  Instead, I will have to let her drive off in a car of her own and pray that she will make wise decisions on her own.  One day, I won't have an overflowing pile of teensy-tiny socks and footed pajamas to fold.  Instead, I will have a surge of laundry at my door once a month as they visit me from college.  One day, I won't be upset because my baby isn't cooperating at her photo shoot.  Instead, I will be standing in awe of my beautiful daughter taking bridal portraits as she is ready to embark on a new chapter of her life.

Life isn't going to stand still.  Instead, it is going to continue to fly by at lightening speed.  No matter how crazy this stage of life is, one day I am going to look back and long to have just one of these days back.  Their problems will just grow bigger, more complicated, and will have more emotional strings attached.

So, for now, I want to hold on to these simple moments.  I want to find joy in picking up the 26 A-to-Z Fisher Price animals and the 100 play cupcake liners that cover my living room floor.  I will smile when I see that top shelf on my dishwasher filled with bottles and sippy cups.  And, cherish the days that my baby girl wants me to hold her and not put her down for a second, even to go to the bathroom.  Because its these little things that remind me of just how perfect life is at this very moment.

God used Alexa, a black crayon, and this little laudry basket to touch my heart today.  When I see this laundry basket for now on, I believe I will have a different reaction.  Instead of my normal grumble, I will smile.  I will be reminded of this sweet moment and what it taught me.  The day will come that I will long to have little feet pitter patter around the house, hear giggles and squeals as my girls play, and feel like I am the most special person when I walk in the room and have little arms wrap around my leg.   The day will come that I miss seeing this little white laundry basket covered in the works of art of my sweet, precious baby girl!

But, until then, I am going to cherish what life is right now, craziness and all!!

Monday, March 21, 2011

8.8 in 61

Week 2 is finally over!  For some reason, I found this week to be really tough.  I have been a bit discouraged that I was not seeing much progress on the scale each day.  That is probably most of my problem, I shouldn't weigh myself everyday.  The little to no change each day gets me frusturated... but, also brings a little more motivation!  Jonathan keeps telling me that I am probably building some muscle from the running and muscle weighs more than fat so I shouldn't go completely based on the scale!

Anwyay, I lost a total of 2.8lbs this week.  That brings my total weight loss to 6.2lbs.  I still have 8.8lbs to go with 61 days left!!  I am still hopeful that I will be able to reach my goal!!  The morning hasn't started off well as I finished off a piece of pizza Alexa had for lunch and then ate a cake ball (thank you Hudson for sharing), so I better stay on the treadmill extra long today and vow to be good the rest of the week!!

Praying that Week 3 is a success!

PS:  I promise to blog about something worth while this week!!  I have been really busy fulfilling card orders (that I am very thankful for), but it didn't leave me very much extra time last week!  Sorry!

Monday, March 14, 2011

11.6 in 68

Yea, my first week of "Project Get Rid of Baby Weight and Make Over Myself" has come to an end!  I am very thankful this week has been a success!  I lost 3.4 lbs!!!  Woohoo!!!  Its not a lot compared to what I need to loose overall, but it is a start!

Well, its time to get on the treadmill.... I got a long way to go!!!!!!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

SIX Months of JOY!

I am having a really hard time coping with the fact that my teeny, tiny, little baby is growing up!!  Honestly, I still look at her as if she were my newborn baby!  Last week we went to a friends house to see her one-week old baby boy.  It was then that it really hit me.... Addilyn is NOT a little bity baby anymore.  She is really growing up!!!  And its just going by way too fast!!!  She is HALF A YEAR old!!  It doesn't even seem possible!  I really feel like I just found out I was pregnant with her!

It is SOOOOO different the second time around!  I feel like I was always rushing Alexa on to the next stage.  I was so ready for her to start cereal and jar food.  I spent all day coaxing her to roll over, or crawl, and eventually walk.  I couldn't wait for what was coming up next.  I wished it all away.  But, with Addi, its so different.  I am not sure if I am scared of her growing up too fast because I don't know if she is my last baby and I will never go through each stage again.  Or, if I just have her invisioned as a tiny baby because she is so much smaller than Alexa.  I really don't know what it is, but I just want her to stay my little snuggly baby girl!!

Much to my dismay, she is definitely growing up!  The last month has been absolutely WONDERFUL!!!!  She is FINALLY a truly happy, happy, happy girl!!!!  Seeing her smile and giggle is the greatest reward!  She spent the first 5 months of her life so unhappy that I just wasn't sure if she would ever grow out of it!!  She now smiles ALL the time and has the sweetest little giggle in the world.  Big sister get most of the laughs, but occassionally daddy and I get some too!!  She is proving to be more content than we ever thought she was.  She really must have been in so much pain! :(  We have been taking her to an AMAZING chiropractor, Dr. Kip Mayo.  Since we started seeing him 4 weeks ago, Addilyn has done a 180!  He has worked some miracles!!  We are so thankful for him and his practice!  Everything about his office is wonderful!  They are all so sweet and truly care about my girl.  Even Alexa Jayne makes herself at home when we go there!  She starts clapping and yelling "Addi, Dr. Mayo's office!" when we pull in the parking lot!  We all love it there!!

Addi is definitely on the small side still!!  But, we figured her growth would be a little slow since she decided to make her arrival a month early!  She offically weighs 13lbs 8oz (7th %tile), is 26in long (57th %tile) and her head was in the 75th %tile.  She is still a petite little girl!  She still fits in most of her 3 month clothes, but has worn a few 6 month things.  We are getting a lot longer use of all her baby clothes than I expected.  She is more beautiful than ever!! She has the bluest eyes and the longest, darkest eyelashes!!  She gets compliments on her beautiful eyes all the time!  She is just so striking!!  She has lost a lot of hair!  Right now, it is still dark, but I am 95% sure her roots are growing in blonde!  Jonathan and I both had super blonde hair as little kids, so it really won't surprise me if she turns blonde for a little while and then goes back to having dark hair when she gets older!

She started rolling over about a month and a half ago.  She is a rolling machine!  She was so excited to figure out she could move around on her own.  She is not quite ready to sit up on her own right now.  She can sit for a few seconds on her own, but then she topples over.  I keep telling Jonathan there is no way she can sit on her own because she doesn't have a 'base' of any kind!  She loves to sit up and tries to sit up on her own when we put her in her bouncy chair now.  She has pretty strong abs to be so little!  She LOVES to be outside.  She is the most content when she is outside in the sun with the cool breeze.  She loves her daily stroller rides and swinging with her big sister!

She FINALLY started taking naps in her own bed!!!  (I have a picture below to prove it!)  It was all my fault that she didn't nap in her bed!  I LOVE snuggling with her while she sleeps.  So, as soon as I laid Alexa down for nap, Addi and I would curl up on the couch and snuggle for 2 hours!  It was such a sweet, special time and I am soooooooo thankful I spent the first 6 months doing that while I could!!  One day, she won't want to do that anymore! :(  But, Daddy insisted that I lay her down in her bed at nap to get her used to her bed.  So, being the sweet, submissive wife I am (right, honey?!), I agreed.  She has done great in her bed and I think the scheduled naps have made her happier.  She rolls straight on her tummy and sleeps about an hour to hour and a half in the morning, and about two to three hours in the afternoon!  I am sure she is much more comfortable in there then in my arms.  However, she is still sleeping in our room at night in her amby baby!!!!  I LOVE being able to look over at her in the middle of the night and knowing shes ok!  She sleeps great in our room, about 10 hours a night.  But, I think Daddy is about to make her move to her own bed at night too, so until then, I am going to savor every moment of it!!!!

We started cereal when Addi turned 5-months old.  She definitely isn't too crazy about it!  I am not one of those moms who forces it too much!  We try, but if she starts crying or just spits it out, I just move on. A few nights ago we attempted carrots for the first time.  She did ok, but she didn't love it!  She made some funny faces and swallowed about half of them.  We will do carrots one more day and then we are moving on to sweet potatoes.  Hopefully she will learn to love it soon!

We are so thankful for our sweet little miracle!!  God has blessed us far beyond our greatest imagination!!!  She brings so much JOY in our life and I can't imagine what life would be like without her!!  God's plans ALWAYS prove to be far greater than my own, and I am so THANKFUL He has entrusted her precious life to us!!  The past six months have been some of the hardest of my life, but they have definitely been the most rewarding!  I am so excited to see what the next months have in store, but I am also completely content with Addi staying my baby girl!!!

Addilyn Joy, we LOVE you so much!!!  Happy 6-Month Birthday Beautiful Baby!!!  

Monday, March 7, 2011

15 in 75

OK!  I know that most of you don't care about this at all, BUT I am going to use my blog as my accountability!!  I desperately need accountability right now, and I figured this would be the perfect way!! (especially since I always ask Jonathan for his help, and then get mad at him and take it the wrong way the second he says something!!)

I am TERRIBLE about dieting for 3 days, and then eating anything and everything I want for the next 27 days.  Every Monday I say that I am really going to get serious, but then I go to Bible study and they have cinnamon rolls, or donuts, or kolaches!  I mean, seriously, who can pass that up!?

BUT, this time, I really, really, really, really, reaaallllllllyyyy am serious!!!  I HAVE to, MUST, ABSOLUTELY, loose 15 lbs in the next 75 days!!!!

Why 75 days?

In 75 days, we are headed to the beautiful Naples, Florida with Jonathan's whole family!!!  I am sooooooo excited about this trip, especially since I haven't been on a big trip since my honeymoon FIVE years ago!  However, the thought of being seen in a bathing suit is almost paralyzing!!!  And, I know, with a 2 year old who loves the water, there is no way for me to spend a week at the beach and avoid wearing a bathing suit!!  I mean, I can't even wear it and hide in a chair... I will have to be running around chasing my crazy girl up and down the beach!  Oh, Lord, HELP ME!

Since Addi's arrival, I have totally neglected myself.  I need a total body makeover!!  So, its time!!!  Every week, I will post my progress, whether I have gained or lost!  Maybe if I know I will have to confess it for the world (or my 2 readers), I will feel more motivated to stay to it!!

Well, here goes nothing!!!  I better get my booty on the treadmill while my babies are asleep and quit talking about it!!!!

Let the diet begin......

Monday, February 28, 2011

Alexa's Cupcake Party

Those of you that know me know that I am obsessed with party planning.  I really do LOVE every second of it.  If I had unlimited funds I would throw a lavish party for every occasion!!  I mean, who does't love a good party!?

So, when it came time to plan Alexa's second birthday I was almost giddy!  There was no doubt in my mind that the theme had to be cupcakes.  The girl LOVES cupcakes!!  {I am not exactly sure where the passion for cupcakes came from ;-)}.  So, in November my sister and I found the most perfect cupcake paper, so party planning was in full force!!

We celebrated Alexa's birthday on February 12th at my parents house!!!  It was soooooooo much fun!!!  Far greater than I could have ever expected!  She had such a great time!!!  The day after her party we went back to my parents house.  I guess she thought she was going back to her party because she was so disappointed the whole time we were there.  We would ask her what she wanted to do (their house is LOADED with fun.... a jump castle, Barbie jeep, swingset, play room FULL of toys), but all she could say was "have a cupcake party"!!  Poor baby!!  But, it was confirmation that it was all worth it!!!!

Here are a few pictures from the big day!!!

Overall, a HUGE success!!!!!  Thank you soooo much to everone who came and made her day soooooo special!!!  And a BIG thank you to Valaree, Cassondra, my mom, and my husband for all of your help!!!  I could not have done it without you!!!!!!

Now, what am I supposed to plan??  Maybe an Easter Extravaganza?!  {wink, wink}

Friday, February 25, 2011

Happy 2nd Birthday Alexa Jayne!

My Sweet Alexa Jayne!!

WOW!!!  T-W-O years old!!!!!  I honestly do not know where the last two years have gone.... they have flown by so fast!  But, I do know they have been the best two years of my entire life!!!

Daddy and I prayed so long for you!!  We often say that God just needed to take his time creating you because you are such an extra special design!  :-)  Well, the wait was definitely worth it!! The whole time I was pregnant with you, I spent hours imagining the little person you would be.  And, baby girl, you are more than I could have ever dreamed of!!!

The last year you have grown up so much!  You went from barely taking a step on your own, to running around everywhere like a crazy woman!!  Daddy and Pops think you are going to be a soccer player because you are so fast and energetic!  You love to be outside swinging, jumping on the trampoline, blowing bubbles, and just getting dirty!

You are such a smart girl!  You know all of your colors and shapes.  A few months ago, you learned every letter from A to Z.  You can recogonize them and know the sound that they make!  You can count to 10 and recogonize your numbers too!!!  You now have a huge vocabulary.  You know so many words and repeat pretty much anything (which definitely keeps mommy and daddy on their toes)!

You LOVE to sing songs.... we bribe you with songs all the time!  You favorite songs are "The ABC's", "The Itsy Bitsy Spider", "Bringing Home a Baby Bumblebee", "Jesus Loves Me", and mommy & daddy's version of "The Beauty and the Beast Song"  aka "Princess Song" to you!!  Mommy and Daddy have duet versions of your songs that we sing to you after bath!  Its one of my favorite times of the day!!!  You giggle with delight at how silly your crazy parents are!

You are a great eater!  You pretty much love it all, but some of your favorites are goldfish, rice, hamburgers, M&M's, cupcakes, chicken, apple sauce with sprinkles, cinnamon toast, and Princess Soup!  You love drinking water, orange juice, and lemonade.  Unfortunately, when we took the bottle away (at 22 months...oops!) you started refusing to drink milk!  So, we have now substituted with a gummy vitamin! You LOVE getting your "princess gummy" every night.... you look forward to it all day and are absolutely giddy when you get it!!  Its so fun to see you so excited about something so simple!!

In August, you transitioned it a BIG GIRL BED!!!!  Papi built you the most beautiful bed in the world!!  It amazing!!  It even has your name at the foot of it!  You love your new bed... you have done so well in it from day one.  You have only gotten out of it a handful of times on your own when you refused a nap!  Your new room is just perfect for you.  You have a kitchen, table & chairs, chandellier, and a closet full of toys!!

You also became a BIG sister!!  You are an absolutely AMAZING sister.... I could not be more proud of you!!  You LOVE baby Addi!!!  You take such good care of her and are always checking in on her.  She loves you so much!  She watches every move you make and soaks it all in.  You often tell her what you are doing and make sure that she is included!  She smiles and giggles at you all the time, especially when you are smothering her with your love!  She is now at the age where she grabs everything, and a lot of times, unfortunately, its your hair.  You are always so gentle and sweet to her, even when she hurts you!  One day I asked you if you wanted to take one of your baby's bye-bye with us (implying a baby doll).  You replied "Yes!!  Take Baby Addi"!  My heart melted at that moment!!!  You are so nurturing and loving!!!  Addilyn is so lucky to have such a sweet sister and best friend!  I pray for your relationship with her and know that you two girls have a lot of fun times ahead of you!!  I can not wait to watch you two learn and grow together... I know you will have such a special bond!!

You are such a beautiful girl!!!  Your sweet, soft curls melt my heart in a million pieces!!  I love to run my fingers through them and watch them spring right back up.  Your hair has gotten soooooo long, its actually down to your shoulder blades when it is wet, but your curls make it look so much shorter!!  Youtr curls fit your personality so well!!  Your big, beautiful, blue eyes are breathtaking!!!  You have long, dark eyelashes... your eyes are soooooo gorgeous!!!  At your 2 year check up you weighed 25.5 lbs (33rd %tile), you were 35.5 inches (88th %tile), and your head measured 18.5 inches (35th %tile).  Needless to say, you have come a long way from the teeny tiny 5lb 10oz baby we brought home from the hospital!

Your inner beauty is even more ravishing than your outer appearace!  I can't even express into words how awesome you are!!  You are so F.U.N!!!!!!!!  The best word to describe you is spunky!!!  You have the cutest little giggle and the most beautiful smile!!  Your smile can light up a room.  Even when you are sick or sad, you still have a smile on your face!  Every time I take you to the dr. when you are sick they don't believe me because you are still so happy.  You love to be silly.  You could rough house and be tickled all day long.  You always ask mommy and daddy to play "got you".... which means we run after you, catch you, tickle you and say "I got you!!"  You love to be loved on.  You play like a crazy woman, and then run over to get a little loving in, and then go right back to playing.  You walk up and say "big hug mommy", throw yourself on me, rub your face all over me, and then you are on your way again.  It makes me crumble in a million pieces!!!  You can also be a little defiant!  You love to test your limits and know exactly which buttons to push!  You are VERY strong willed... you know what you want and will do what it takes to get it.  I secretly LOVE this about you, but have a feeling it will create some challenges along the way!!!  I love to watch daddy discipline you.  You know that he is a softy, so you smile and bat your eyes the whole time.  Lately, you sweetly say "Daddy" with a soft little sigh.  9 times out of 10 it really does help!!  I told you that you were a smart girl!!  :-)  You are so well rounded!!  You love to play outside and get dirty.  You can play in the dirt and be covered in bubbles and then come inside and love on your baby dolls!  We gave you a train set for your birthday, knowing it was a bit boyish, but you love it.  However, when the train falls off the track, you say "it's ok train", pick it up, give it a kiss, and then set it back on the track.  You are just an all around total package!!!!!

I thank God everyday for blessing us with you.  I am so proud of you and love you more than you will ever know.  Daddy and I pray for you everyday (normally many times a day).  I pray you always have a sweet heart and gentle spirit.  I pray for you to live a life of honor and humility.  I pray for your salvation; that, above ALL else, God is your everything!!  I pray that in whatever path you choose for your life, God would be glorified.  He would shine through you.  I pray He gives you a heart for others, a passion to serve, and desire to live for Him!  I pray for the friends you will have.  I truly believe you are who you surround yourself with.  I pray that God has hand picked the people that He will set in your life.  I am praying for the lives of your teachers, mentors, coaches.  I fervently pray for the man God has created for you.  Whoever he is, wherever he is, I pray he is a true man of God.  A man who will seek to put God first and you second.  A man who is hard working, honest, humble, gentle, and knows how to treat you like a princess.  You are the daughter of the King, and you deserve to be treated like one!

Alexa Jayne, you are our princess!!  You are one amazing baby girl!!  Daddy and I love you more than we can ever express!  I am so proud to be your mommy!!!  I can not wait to see what God has planned for your life!!  I am so excited about the adventures you have set before you!  I feel so honored that God gave me you!!  He trusts ME with your life!  You and your sister are the greatest gifts I have ever been given and I vow to treasure you, protect you, and give you my ALL - my very BEST!!!  I promise to seek His direction for your life.  You are going to do amazing things sweet baby - I just know it!

Happy 2nd Birthday Alexa Jayne Walker!!!

I love you sweet girl!!!!!!!!!!