Tuesday, December 30, 2008

A little more time with our girl

Amanda's flight was over booked and for some reason they down sized the plane so their was no more room. Her mom was none to happy, it cause changed to plans but what do ya do. So we were compensated with 200% of the cost of a one way ticket. She is guaranteed to get on a new flight tomorrow that will get her home around 4pm.

On the upside she was able spend the day with us in town. Both her and dad got hair cuts, we had lunch at BK and got LeAnne a few size 18 month outfits. We came home and all took a nap, which was really nice. I even got to sleep with my precious girl on my chest. I love having her so close to me. Tonight we plan to chill and play a game after lil one goes to bed.

Well I am off to change ANOTHER diaper...LeAnne is STILL not feeling well. She is still having some stomach cramping but eating, drinking and playing.

Precious Pictures

Reading a book to daddy

Check out the adorable braids!

Going in for the kiss

We must teach her to close her mouth. :-)

Random Thoughts From Mama Bear

I've been waiting to write about our Christmas until I could sit down and put my thoughts together so they all sounded pretty. I've been trying for a long time to write a family update letter to put in our Christmas cards but I've been having trouble being creative and didn't want people to have to read yet another boring Christmas letter. Well the time has come to stop trying to make it all pretty or creative and just do it. Life is a work in progress, not always pretty, and it's better to write the memories down and share a family update even if it's not creative or doesn't sound elegant.

New Years card coming to your mailbox SOON!
Our New Years family update letter is completed. I am ordering pictures to go inside and will bet them ready to send out before I go back to work.

Christmas Eve
We went to my mom's house for dinner, visiting and to open gifts. The guys shoveled 3 feet of snow off of my mom's room before dinner. Talk about work up an appetite and some sore muscles. Dinner was yummy! LeAnne woke up from her nap kinda cranky but soon was having fun with her cousins. I got some great pictures of our girls that night. LeAnne had fun playing the the wrapping paper, boxes and my new mixing bowls. It so much fun to watch other people receiving gifts. We left grandmas house wondering if more snow would come like the weather man said. At home we got the kids in bed and Santa made a visit to our house.

Christmas Day
First gift I was able to sleep until 7am! Then I got up, made coffee, put cinnamon rolls in the oven and started to prepare ingredients for the Quiche all before LeAnne woke up at 7:30am. 2nd gift was we only got an inch of snow. :-) It was fun having a white Christmas but the snow sure made life interesting. After mama bear put the Quiche in the oven we opened gifts. Santa was good to us all this year. LeAnne got the hang of opening gifts but still had more fun stacking the presents, and playing with the paper. Amanda was really happy with her gifts and had fun watching her sister play. I cried when I opened Amanda's gift to me - a framed 8X10 picture of her and her dog. It's so rare we get pictures of her when's she home so I really treasure this picture!! Our Quiche was done just as we finished opening gifts and seconds prior to lil girl melting down because she was hungry. We hung out as a family, clean up and watched a classic Christmas movie on TV. It was so precious when LeAnne fell asleep on the floor for the first time ever. We went to my sisters for dinner in the afternoon. On our way down we saw at least 200 deer, pheasant, an eagle and a huge (estimated 2000 pounds) bull elk. We missed the shot because he ran off but you talk about a majestic animal. We had a wonderful time at my sisters, and dinner was yummy. LeAnne actually let Uncle Stan pick her up. Amanda and her cousins played board games and hung out in the girls new rooms. Their house was decorate so nice and it looks amazing! The drive home was a bit icy but we made it safely! What a blessed Christmas celebration! It was so nice to be rested enough that I was alert and not in a daze like last year. It was different not being able to see the rest of our family. We did talk to them so that helped. John talked to his brother for the first time in a while and we really want to take a trip to see them this year. Family is such a precious gift.

Reason for the season...
It's so easy to get caught up in the ever present, commercialized ways of the season we over look what Christmas is all about. I found myself on more than one occasion this Christmas season feeling like I wasn't celebrating the miracle of Jesus's birth the way it should be celebrated. I really miss being apart of a church, and we must find a new church home. I miss the fellowship, the worship, and growing in my relationship with Christs. Look what I did.. I did it again... I started thinking about myself instead of reflecting on the gift of Christmas. Geesh being human is messy, I am so self-centered and need to be more Christ-centered. How amazing it must have been able to watch Jesus grow up. I am so thankful for the birth of our Savior! Christmas isn't about the new things we get, but about celebrating the gift we've been given so selflessly, a gift that will provide us ever lasting life with God in heaven. Being a parent myself now I feel like I am seeing life with a new set of eyes. These ramblings are even a bit much for a rambling post so I'll stop by saying I yearn to be better and I am thankful for our savior.

My poor baby girl...
I was awaken Monday morning at 1:30am by the piercing cry of my daughter. I walked in her room to an awful smell and found she had thrown up everywhere. My poor baby girl! I spent the next 1/2 hour cleaning up while she cried because she just wanted mama to hold her. Then we sat for a while, she threw up one more time, and then finally drank some juice diluted with water and pedialyte She finally fell back to sleep in my arms about 4am. She slept soundly until 8:30am, had a few icky diapers that morning but then ate well, drank well and was in a great mood the rest of the day. I wish I knew what was causing her to get sick like this every once in a while. We've wondered if it could be a food allergy or a milk sensitivity. Thoughts?

Prayer for Stellan & the Mckfamily
LeAnne's one night of an upset tummy is nothing in comparison to what poor little Stellan is going through right now. I follow Stellan's mom's blog, which I found through another blog I read and it amazing how close one can feel to a family she's never met. If you're curious about their whole story I urge you to check out MckMama's blog. Please pray for this family as Stellan is in the PICU fighting RSV.

Is it really that time already?
Amanda goes home today. :-( I hate this time of our visit. We always urge her to stay, she'd have her own mini apartment at our house now, but we realize she must go home. She has said maybe she'll come go to college here and live with us. It's hard to imagine our girl will be in college in 2 1/2 years! WOW time flies so fast!

Thank-you to all our family and friends who have blessed us with their love, thoughtful gifts, and fun celebrations. I am so thankful for my family & friends! I love being a mama! I am thankful for my husband, my children, God's provision & guidance, and so much more! Life is so precious.

The thoughts in my head continue to whirl but I'll save them for next time. Thanks for coming along on this journey of my thoughts. :-) Coming soon... A recap of 2008.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

My Favorite Christmas Pictures

We had an wonderful Christmas! I'll write more soon but for now here are a few of my favorite pictures.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Christmas Cookies

Yesterday I made Christmas cookies with Amanda and my youngest nieces. It was fun , I really enjoyed the experience and look forward to LeAnne joining my helper team next year. The cookies themselves didn't turn out all the best. I think I was too distracted while making the dough so they certainly don't taste like my mama's cookies. Some of the cookies are a bit interesting but I am not going to let it bug me because as I've learned this year "Life is messy"! Next year I will have the dough pre-made so I don't have distractions and can use my helpers to bake and decorate. I got up this morning to finish backing the Chocolate Krinkle cookies and the Chocolate Chip cookies because we ran out of steam and it got too late. :-) The girls were a huge help when it came to keeping LeAnne happy!!!

Amanda's bag arrived late yesterday afternoon! :-) She's one happy girl! I love having our girl with us! She's growing up so much!

John spent a lot of time yesterday on our garage room taking the snow off so the roof doesn't collapse when it starts to melt. He officially hates snow! Poor guy was EXHAUSTED and freezing. We are expected to get dumped on again Christmas Eve, oh that's today! LOL!! We are off to Grandma Marcia's house tonight for Christmas Eve!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

The best Christmas gift...

LeAnne showing Amanda where her nose is.

Amanda & LeAnne playing on the couch.

I already have my Christmas gift and it's the best gift ever... our little family all together, enjoying each other, helping each other, playing together and making memories that will last a life time! Amanda is having a blast with her little sister, she can't believe how well she's walking and just keeps saying "she's adorable". It makes me so happy to see them together! We are so blessed and so many prayers have been answered!

Since Amanda's bag didn't make it here yesterday she got to open one present, her PJ's and so I thought LeAnne should open one too. Hee hee! Daddy tried to put his foot down but I wore him down and he let her open one gift as long as I didn't help. Way to go baby -- she's a pro already! She got ot open her little tug boat to play with in the bath tub. Then last night we watched our Transiberian Orchestra DVD and then Fred Claus. Today we are going to make Christmas cookies! yummy! Amanda is so excited!

I've resigned myself that I am just not going to get a Christmas letter written this year and think if I start now for next year it might happen. Hee hee! Instead I am going to have someone take a nice family picture of us and put that inside the cards.

Well little one will be up soon so I bet get these pictures uploaded. Amanda's bags made it to Walla Walla last night and should be delivered to us today. In other news; Mom's play was amazing, I took some pictures and recorded her song but I need to let her see them before I share. I wish everyone could have been there. The play has an awesome message and was so cute! Oh and guess what... it's snowing here again. Yikes!

I pray ya'll are having a blessed Christmas season.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Amanda's here

Amanda arrived last night! We got home about 8pm, we survived the icy roads and got home before the snow hit. Only hitch was Amanda's flight from Portland was delayed so she got off one plane and straight onto the next plane for her connecting to Walla Walla and her luggage didn't make it onto the plane. No biggie they'll deliver it to us as soon as it arrives. Hopefully she'll have her luggage this afternoon. We are so happy to have our girls together for Christmas.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Snow pictures

Here are a few pictures I took around our house this morning. I bet we have 2 1/2 feet, drifting to 3ft in some areas. Check out the icicles on the side of our house. LeAnne was outside for only a minute while I snapped these pictures because she was upset I left the house. Brrr it's COLD! So far Amanda's flights are on time and she is probably in Portland by now. Were off to town around 1pm, we'll do our shopping and pick up Amanda at 5pm if all flights are on time. I'll check in once we get home. Thanks for your prayers!

Is it Spring yet?

Tomorrow is the "official" first day of winter and I am ready for it to be Spring. LOL!! The way Winter is kicking off I pray were not in for a long, hard Winter. Dayton received a record 11 inches of snow in the 24-hour period ending at 8 a.m. today (Dec 19, 2008), The Associated Press reported today. That obliterated the old record of 3.5 inches set in 1978, according to weather service records. Information found in an article in the Union Bulletin newspaper. I know in years past living in Western Washington I wished for snow and hated to see it go so quickly but I am pretty sure I've had my fill of snow now! LOL!! I know this snow has my dear husband all worried about everything and that's not him to be a worry wart. We have another strong storm front moving into our area this afternoon which is forcasted to bring a lot more snow. UGH! We are praying Amanda's flights are not canceled, she arrives here safely and then we are able to make it home. This afternoon we will be leaving LeAnne with mom while we go grocery shopping and then pick up LeAnne. LeAnne is still not feeling well (either am I) and getting stuck in the snow with a toddler is not a good so were playing it safe. These roads are down right treacherous! I look forward to having to spending some quiet time close to home with my husband and our girls! The snow is beautiful, it does seem more peaceful outside, and it will be neat to have a white Christmas. I look forward to taking a walk in the snow with John and Amanda.

I am praying LeAnne & I get healthy quickly so we can enjoy Christmas! She's got a stomach bug and I have a cold. Good times as daddy says! I am so EXCITED to have John home for a week! 5 more days until Christmas!! YEAH! I'll post some snow pictures of our house soon.

LeAnne loves rocking in Grandma Marcia's rocking chair. Notice the snow in the window. LeAnne and I spent the night with Grandma on Thursday. Thursday night LeAnne figured out how to climb onto grandma's rocking ottoman, climb into grandma's chair and she was pretty proud of herself. Look out!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Snow...Snow...Snow and more snow!!!

YOWZA this snow is nuts! This Western Washington native has some serious adjusting to do now that we live in Eastern Washington!!! We have 8-10 inches of new snow since last night and it's still snowing hard! I have 3 inches of new snow on my car since I cleared it off at 7am! John is staying at my nieces in Walla Walla today, he'll work tonight and we'll deal with getting him home Friday morning. OMGosh will Amanda's flight be delayed or canceled? EEKS! She is scheduled to arrive in Walla Walla at 5:30pm Saturday. Let's pray she's not delayed and arrives safely. I better alert my family still in Western Washington we may need their help. If she gets stuck in Seattle I'll give them a call to get her from Seatac until we can get her here. Thank God for family! :-)

I am off to go pack up, clean off the car and see if I can make it to my mom's a few blocks away. It would be fun if we could make Christmas cookies with Grandma Marcia today. I'll take pictures and post as soon as I can. It's a winter wonderland over here! :-) I think it's pretty likely we'll have a white Christmas!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Brrr...snow & sick lil girl

Winter has arrived in full force! We have about 14 inches of snow and it's 8 degrees right now. John's been busy keeping the walk ways clear and de-iced, thawing a frozen pipe and thawing our cars. Snow is beautiful but a lot of work! I made a trip to the store today to get some staples and survived.They're doing a great job of trying to keep the roads clear. Amanda sent John a text today asking if it was really 15 degrees. She's very excited to have snow for Christmas. I believe school will be open but 2 hours late tomorrow. I am going to take the day off to be with LeAnne, who is sick. She woke me up screaming at 3am. She puked all over when I picked her up. Cleaned everything up and got her back to bed by 4am. I was wide awake so I worked on my grocery list and then took a shower. She woke up screaming again a little before 6am and once again puked all over me, herself and her bed. Then started the diarrhea. Poor baby has been feeling terrible all day long. She has tried to be in a good mood when she could and were trying to keep her hydrated. I hope this passes quickly. Well I am off to bed. I would appreciate your prayers for safe travels for all of us over here this winter and for LeAnne to get healthy soon. John works Monday - Thursday night and then he's off for a week. :-) Stay warm and be safe!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Our snow baby!

I woke early this morning to 6 inches of snow and it's still snowing!!! It's BEAUTIFUL! I love it! I am thinking it's here to stay for a bit too because they're predicting some mighty cold temperatures next week. I mean like high temperatures under 10 degree's Fahrenheit. I am not looking forward to driving in the snow but this is where we live now so I must figure it out!

LeAnne's first reaction to the snow was "oooooh" It took me 15 minutes to gather her snow clothes, bundle her up and she was outside for maybe 5 minutes! LOL!!! The snow suit great aunt Katie sent works perfect! She was very curious, then daddy put her down, she tried to take a step and fell face first. Oh she was one unhappy baby girl! Once daddy put her onto the side walk he had just finished shoveling she was much happier until she slipped and fell face first. Shows over and we went inside.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Christmas decorating & more...

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas our house.
Our trip to town on Saturday was fairly successful. We are 90% done with our Christmas shopping, and we got our Christmas tree. This year we got a different type of tree for a change of pace. It's called a Concolor Fir. LeAnne napped in the car so she was reading to go once we got home. Decorating with her toddling underfoot is definitely a challenge! We kept giving her decorations that she could enjoy without harming and she really did fairly well. Our Christmas tree has dog pen around it to keep little hands at bay. So far she is respecting the fence. She loves the lights! If you listen carefully she is trying to say "pretty pretty". Their is a little snowman that makes funny noises when dropped that she LOVES! I'll post a video of her playing with it. Listen for her laugh. Oh I forgot to tell ya she had a her picture taken with Santa at Walmart on Saturday. She wasn't scared at all and had a big smile on her face. We didn't get the picture because you had to wait around for a few hours and she was DONE shopping. It was a free Walmart picture.

12 more days until Amanda comes on December 20th! I decorated the downstairs with Christmas decorations too. Daddy just needs to give it the finishing touch by adding some lights. We are so excited to be together as a family this Christmas! Seeing my family spend time together is the best gift I could ever receive. The recent loss of a dear friend has me cherishing my family even more! Life is such a precious gift, enjoy it, make a difference in the lives around you and share your LOVE!

This Friday is the Christmas program at school. John, my mom and LeAnne are coming. I can't wait to introduce them to the kids, my co-workers and have LeAnne's pix taken with Santa. Now lets hope she holds it together since the program doesn't start until 7pm.

LeAnne & I were invited to the 1st annual cookie baking party at the Hoyecki's next Saturday! The forecast is calling for snow Friday through Sunday! I am praying it doesn't stick around and then over Christmas break snows a ton. I am dreaming of a white Christmas!!

I must run off for now to finish up my lesson plans for this week before lil one wakes up. I pray each of you has a blessed week, full of love and laughter.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

(Not so) Silent Night

I saw this poem in Baby Talk magazine (written by Melissa Balmain) and it fits LeAnne's current stage almost perfectly. This Christmas Daddy, Grandma & I are wishing for days without screaming, at least one good nap a day and silent nights.

(Not so) Silent Night

Silent Night, sheer delight.
Kid's asleep-shocking sight.
Can't believe she's not up until all hours,
Screeching while the whole
neighborhood glowers.
Hey-let's trim up the tree!
It's our once chance, you and me.

Silent night? Well, not quite.
Kid's awake; plans ignite.
Won't be trimming the tree
after all,
Baking cookies or decking
the hall.
Next year, maybe-we'll see-
Or we could wait until she's 3.

When LeAnne is reading for a nap we are heading into Walla Walla to finish our Christmas shopping and get our tree. Our hope is she will nap in the car and be a happy girl! We hope to get our Christmas decorations all up this weekend too. This should be interesting with lil one at our feet!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Did she really put two & two together?/Pkg from Auntie Katie!

Good Morning!!!! It's hump day! Up and over we go. Best news for me is John is off for the next 3 weekends and a week before Christmas! Yahooo! So get this yesterday was John's day to have LeAnne, while he was in the bathroom my sister called, well he comes out of the bathroom (it wasn't long) to find LeAnne holding his phone babbling and then he hears my sister saying "give the phone to daddy". WHAT? Are you kidding me? She knew to answer daddy's flip phone? How adorable and scary is that! :-)

Thank-you Auntie Katie for spoiling our girl once again! Our girl is so blessed to have family and friends who love her so very much! LeAnne scored once again... 3 new dresses, a few cute long sleeve onsies, a Winnie The Pooh snow suit and 3 new dresses. Perfect timing on the dresses because I've bene having trouble finding a Christmas dress I likes. :-)

Well I must go get LeAnne some breakfast, wake up daddy and then I am off to work! Oh on a work note I had the best teaching moment yesterday with my student. We don't know if his handwriting will ever be wonderful so I am starting to teach him how to type. The first lesson was really terrible so we've been looking around for a special keyboard and software, but in the mean time I wanted to give it another try. So I told him I had a challenge for him, showed him how to put his left hand on the home keys, I sat next to him and did the same thing and then had him look at me and type asfd asdf asfd many times while saying it in a sing song voice. Then I said okay now look at me and type dad, no peaking and.... he did it! OMGosh he was so proud of himself! SCORE!!! I love this little guy!!! He loves the computer and I see it being a big part of his future so the more I can teach him the better. He wants to be an Astronaut, loves all things space, and Star Wars. I refuse to set limits for him, the sky is the limit in my mind and I am going to do the best I can to help him be the best he can be.

Have a wonderfully wacky Wednesday!!


Tuesday, December 2, 2008

LeAnne & Sleeping - Prayers/Wisdom appreciated!

It's going on week 2 or 3 that LeAnne has been having issues with sleeping. Well I take that back it's just a new issue, she's NEVER been the best sleeper. Did I make the mistake of rocking my girl to sleep? We get her asleep then the second we pick her up from our chests or lay her down she wakes up SCREAMING! It's worse for her naps. We've let her scream up to an hour and it doesn't seem to help at all. I don't want to let her scream all day long. I've heard of giving them like 10 minutes then going into soothe them and walking out but for her I don't see how that will work because if we go in there all she wants is OUT of the crib and into our arms. I think that would just prolong the process. I am willing try for a bit on this first nap of the day and then give up on that nap if she won't go down but she still needs at least one nap a day right? I know by giving into her screaming she wins but I can't listen to her scream and scream and scream. It breaks my heart! At the same time I know I need to teach her how to soothe herself to sleep but how do I do that? I feel like I've done something wrong. How do I make it better for our girl? Poor grandma Marcia too! She's trying everything and it's not working. UGH! I know we can't rock and/or hold her while she's sleeping forever but how do teach her? She's not sleeping as good at night again either. She's up once and then not sleeping on. I tell ya our little girl is high maintenance!

If you have any suggestions please share in detail. Also I'd appreciate your prayers! Well I must go give our girl some breakfast before I go to work.