Sunday, April 26, 2009

Novice Photographer

Happy Birthday to my sisters, Laura and Linda! We had a fun party tonight. Aliza wanted to help open presents so I had to think of a more exciting job for her. She became the birthday photographer. For those of us who were there it was absolutely hysterical. She was so enthusiastic. She pointed the camera (at herself) and told the person to say "CHEESE" then she looked at the picture she took and announced that it was "AWESOME!" Her hand was generally over the lens, but she managed to get a few good ones.

And then she started to really get the hang of it and decided to help me pose. Mommy, do this... (she demonstraed) and then took the picture. She missed my face on the "scary eyes" pose! Sorry Jeff!

We had a fun weekend that I intend to blog about a little later.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

New Kid

This little guy has cut 5 teeth in a week. I knew it was coming since he had not had a new tooth since early December. At first I didn't think it really affected him too much, but then I realized how many fewer temper tantrums I've had in the last couple days. How much longer he has played by himself without crying and how much more he has giggled and laughed. He's really a new little boy....and oh so cute these days. That tongue has been out at the funniest times.

Friday, April 17, 2009

How to Find a Distribution Tank

We are getting ready to resubmit our blueprints to the Health Department. This time with only 3 bedrooms. We will be proposing to relocate our septic tank and tie it in with out current drain field. So as part of the submission we have to locate our distribution tank (totally uncover it so the inspection can lift the lid) and diagram the drain field. So Brian, my brother, came over this afternoon to find the distribution tank.

Step 1: Find the edge of the septic tank and the pipe that leads to the distribution box.

Step 2: Follow the pipe by poking a metal rod through the ground every couple inches making sure that you hit the pipe. Mark the pipe line with red paint so that this process doesn't have to be repeated!

Step 3: Dig until you find the distribution box. The distribution box is where all the sewage water is disbursed to the drain field. It is helpful to have a niece for a cheerleader! Her constant chatter and directives will keep you amused. I think she told Brian at one point to cut a particular tree down and put it on the garage roof! hmmm...

Step 4: Open up the distribution box. The hope would be to see where the pipes are running. When we opened up the cracked lid our box was full to the brim of dirty looking water. I wonder if that's a problem? I'm afraid we just opened a big can of worms. Can the Health Department tell us that we have such a crappy (no pun intended!!) system that they demand that we get a new one? Even though ours seem to work for us? Only time will tell.

Thursday, April 16, 2009


I thought it was about time to catch up on what the children are doing these days.

We gave Josiah this pull-along John Deere tractor for his birthday. He pulls it along everywhere. We have a circle in our house and he walks around and around.

Our tradition is to have the children play independently in their rooms while we get ready for the day. I thought Josiah's room was baby proof. I quickly learned that it is not boy proof!
This picture was taken at Grandma's house, but the first thing he does every morning is pull his blanket out of his crib and wrap it around his head.
Then one morning we found him on the rocking chair....rocking back and forth while standing up!
And he pulled the drawer out from under his bed and climbed in. He has also climbed up on the guest bed that is in his room. The other favorite activities are to closely examine the knobs on the space heater and the electrical cords from the lamps that are in the room. I think maybe he'll be an electrician. haha.

Josiah finally got his 8th tooth last week. A tooth hadn't popped through since early December. He points at everything wanting to know what it is. He said "Yes" last week. And I can't wait until he learns a few more words because the "MMMMmmmm" sound to get food or juice is getting old!

This is Princess Aliza!
She wears this dress almost every day. The first day she put it on she wanted a necklace to go with it. (That's what she is holding above her head.) When the dress is on she refers to herself as Princess. I've already had to pull out the sewing machine mend some of the ruffles.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

The Shack

I just finished reading The Shack by Wm. Paul Young. It's an fascinating and compelling book. Definitely a "must read." This book is a fictitious story of a man's encounter with God. It deepened my faith, gave me a new perspective on God's character and challenged many religious stereotypes I've picked up over the years.

So I told Jeremy he had to listen to this book. He downloaded it from and listened to it all day yesterday. He's finishing it tonight. At 11:30pm last night we were both curled up in bed listening to/reading this book.

I was almost asleep at midnight when we both sat up straight after hearing an explosion that sounded like it was right outside our house. Jeremy said he saw a light. We got up and looked around. Saw nothing. I laid back now and spent the next hour trying to convince myself that it wasn't a gun shot and no one was trying to get in our house.

At 1:00am I was still not quite asleep (but Jeremy was) when our room was filled with light from a vehicle outside. I shook Jeremy awake. I was quite scared. Jeremy sat straight up and started saying (really loudly) What? What? Where? In our house? I was trying to wake him and tell him it was me talking to him, but he thought someone was telling him that something happened to me. (Ok. Obviously we were both pretty scared!)

So we peek through the mini blinds and there is a vehicle going very slowly down our street with roving spotlights and emergency lights. All white lights. The vehicle is coming towards us while we are peeking out the mini blinds and stops and the spot light appears to be pointed right at our little peeping eyes. Now my heart is pounding! I'm sure they have seen us and presume that we fired a gun! We leave the window and the vehicle proceeds towards our house and TURNS IN OUR DRIVEWAY! I tell Jeremy to get dressed because he is going to have to talk to them. At this point we are convinced that law enforcement is looking for a criminal. The vehicle then turns around and stops in front of a light pole in front of our neighbors house. We then remind ourselves that all the lights on this vehicle are white and come to the conclusion that the explosion was something electrical this was a utility truck coming to fix the problem.

At 2:20am there was still a guy in a bucket at the top of the electrical pole. Yes, I looked. I was still awake! But then I did go to sleep and morning came too soon.

Monday, April 13, 2009


Ugh! Potty training. I don't recommend it at all--for any parent! It's part of the deal, I guess, and one of those things that would certainly be easier done with a training manual. Aliza is so, so close. In the last week she has totally initiated #1 and been successful. She hasn't had an accident since she started initiating. On the flip side she has not gone #2 since she started initiating. Today was day 6 since she last pooped.

On Saturday she woke up and told me at breakfast, "Mommy I not going to throw up." The Mommy radar went on alert. I realized it had been 4 days since she pooped and thought that was probably the reason for her tummy feeling upset. I figured I'd do a quick suppository and the problem would be fixed. The suppository didn't do the trick. On Sunday I picked up a stimulant laxative for children figuring that was another fool proof plan. It didn't work.

By this morning I figured I really needed to make some progress. I talked to a friend and called the Dr. office just to make sure I was on the right track. Of course the Dr. office said a toddler shouldn't go more than 3-4 without pooping. Oops! I made another trip to Wal-Mart for grapes, mineral oil and a child's enema (just in case). My biggest concern was that Aliza not get to the point where she got sick.

She ate A LOT of grapes at lunch time and didn't know there was mineral oil in her apple juice. Then tonight I gave her the laxative again and let her soak in the tub. She was in and out of the tub wanting to use the potty. AND she was actually agreeing to push when she was on the potty. I tucked her in hoping that I wouldn't have to use the enema tomorrow. When I got home from TCBY (we have to celebrate a big tax return!) she had pooped in her diaper! I was sooooo excited. I was so relieved you would have thought I was the one pooping!

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Happy Easter!

Hallelujah! Jesus is Alive! Death has lost it's victory and the grave has been denied. The Lamb of God has risen. He's Alive! He's Alive! Hallelujah! Jesus is Alive! Those are the words from one of our favorite Easter songs by Ron Kenoly. I could sing it over and over and over. We had church last night where we celebrated communion with some who are celebrating their first true Easter. Then this morning we had a breakfast with the church. After eating and singing we talked about what was significant about Easter for us this year.

For me, this Easter I really thought about how to make Easter real for my children. I don't want Easter to be about candy and bunnies. While that part of Easter is really fun there is a much more significant meaning that I want to instill into their souls. I may be raising them in a Christian family with Christian traditions, but that does not guarantee that they will choose to accept Christ as their Lord. To that end, I will be very intentional in the things I do to instill in them a desire to follow Christ every day of their lives.

I REALLY wanted to make Easter baskets, but I wanted the Easter baskets to point to the true meaning of Easter--Christ's resurrection. I found a book last year called My Easter Basket and it talks about how the different colors in the basket tell the story of Jesus' death and resurrection. (ie. green is for the palms that lay on the road of Jesus' triumphal entry, purple is for the wine at the Last Supper, brown is for Jesus' death. ) My idea was to create baskets with an item for each color. I was successful and I suspect that this will be tradition for our family.

We read the story first.

Then we gave them their baskets. No, they didn't "get it" this year. That's ok though.

And then we had an Easter egg hunt!
Caleb's first egg hunt. It was fun to watch him catch on to the idea. I think he had fun!

Aliza had her own designated area this year. She was a pro.

Josiah found a couple eggs. He kept running to the far reaches of the yard and had to be rescued. Thanks to Uncle Jeff and Aunt Janell for watching out for him. Josiah is particularly fond of Aunt Janell. I think it's because she lets him off her plate. Whenever she sits down to eat Josiah is right there waiting to see what sweet thing he can get off her plate! And Uncle Jeff kept Janell's plate supplies with his favorites today.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Decorating Easter Eggs

Holidays are so much more exciting with children around! Aliza couldn't wait to decorate eggs this morning. Before Grandma came she wanted to call her and ask Grandma to bring her a blue egg. We used a coloring kit that had dye in q-tips. You broke off one end which allowed to dye to flow down into the other end of the q-tip. Then you could color.

You can barely see it, but she has a grin on her face as she started her first egg.

An almost finished product.

Caleb got in on the action too! And Josiah, well, he wanted to taste the eggs.

Aliza did most of the eggs so I wanted to get a picture of her with the eggs. She was concentrating so hard on holding the eggs that she couldn't look at me. The story that she repeated today was about the egg that rolled off the table and under the china cupboard. It was cracked when I retrieved it. That was memorable for her!

Monday, April 6, 2009

After 3 Long Months...

Aliza initiated using the potty twice in the last three days and both times she sat down and promptly went! Hooray! Maybe, maybe, just maybe we are crossing a hurdle and moving towards the finish line.

As for my finger, I have a knuckle band-aid now and trying to get some range of motion back. It is still super tender and throbs and burns easily. The goal is not to break the scab, but the Dr. said I've taken really good care of it. That would be thanks to Jeremy. He's been heroic. Tonight is the last antibiotic and I'm sure hoping I'm feeling better tomorrow.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Domestic Duties can be Dangerous

Wednesday I was washing lunch dishes and this glass broke in my hand. I looked down and saw that I had cut myself badly. I figured I needed stitches, but it was a wide cut and didn't look like it could be pulled together. I was alone with the children and got scared. I could hardly think who to call and I wanted someone to come quick! After several no answers. I called a retired neighbor couple. He is on the local volunteer fire department so his idea was to take me to see the paramedic on staff. His wife stayed with the children and off we went. The paramedic poured hydrogen peroxide on it and slapped on a band-aid.

I didn't feel good about it when I got home. I called Mom at work for comfort, but she didn't give it to me. Dad came over and off I immediate care. Our immediate care center is fabulous and this experience was no exception. The wait was minimal. They looked at it and said they were going to clean it and put a scab on the cut. I'll spare you the details since it's hard to type, but it hurt...bad. And I am really bad at breathing in scary situations and ended up fighting to not pass out for an hour. Oxygen and everything. The Dr. was so nice though. She stayed in the room with me and didn't make me feel stupid at all. I survived without passing out and drove home.

She wanted to check it out again in 24 hours so I went in yesterday. It looks so gross. Now my job is to keep it clean. I have to keep it dry and when the children are asleep I have to take the bandage off and let it open to the air. And I have to wash it too. The goal is for it not to get infected so I'm trying my best to do my part. I feel a bit gimpy though!

I'll feel a lot better when the antibiotics are finished. I have no gumption. I'd like to just stay in bed!