Friday, December 3, 2010

December, I'm ready for you!

Is it December already?! I suppose it's time for me to update! (And maybe change out of the fall layout?)

SO, here is an update on my life the past couple weeks, yes I am terrible at blogging!

-We got back from our mini-"vacation" in Kansas... the plane ride home went okay, only some fussing! Okay..maybe more than some. maybe lots. and tons of people giving me that "i-know-what-you're-going-through" look and nod, with a shy smile. Also, tons of crazy advice: "your baby is crying because he can smell burger king and he's hungry..." uh? excuse me? my baby is less than 2 months old. he doesnt get hungry smelling food hes never tasted before. lol.

-We have all had colds ever since returning from KS. For some reason, we just can't kick them! All three of us.. brad less than Colton and I, but him a little bit still. What is going on with colds this year? Seriously.

-On a very happy note: colton has been sleeping through the night. Yes, 8-9 hours every night. can you believe it?! its been over a week of it, and he is STILL doing it!!!! Honestly.... I am soo thankful for sleep these days!

-Christmas shopping... I am almost done with all my XMas shopping for this year, only have to finish Colton's presents and Brads presents. And my mom, but I have a wonderful idea for her, hopefully it will pan out! I have Brads all planned... but for Colton... i dont know why shopping for a will be 3 month old is so hard! I nixed all clothes from my options list. So, I have gotten him gloves and sunglasses for his stocking so far. What else? If only we had a better toy store around here. Online shopping: here I come. Any ideas for a baby for Christmas??

-Christmas card... almost done. Ordering it today (hopefully) but here is a preview of the picture:

Yes, I know. Adorable. We decided to go with a picture with just Colton in it. We just couldn't figure out how to get a good picture of all 3 of us, without another person here to take it. So just Colton it is! Anyway, I think that it is probably cuter with just him anyway!

-Speaking of pictures.... I won a photo session with the amazing Linnie Arnesen through her blog! She was our wedding photographer, and she did our engagement photos. Love her, So excited. When we head back to KS for Xmas, we should get some super amazing family photos! Though not in time for XMas card pictures, still perfect for framing!

Anyway.. that's all for now.
Lots of love!!!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Lots & Lots of Firsts

Miscellany Monday @ lowercase letters

Okay, okay... I am going to try this "Monday Miscellany" thing... all thanks to my good friend over at Daily Sips

1. The first I am SO excited about: sleeping through the night. Yes, ladies and gentlemen. Colton has slept through the night for the VERY FIRST TIME. Last night... 10pm-6am. No crying whatsoever, just sleeping. My baby might be a prodigy. I hope this continues!!!!!!!

2. A couple days ago, Colton had his very first flight! And he did SO good! I was super nervous to fly (by myself) with a 7 week old, but Brad was heading out for the week and I was not excited to stay by myself in NC with all my family in KS. So we decided, pretty last minute actually, that I should head home and give my baby some grandma/grandpa/auntie meggie/lots of family time. And I am so thankful. The flight went SO WELL though... He slept practically the whole time, no fussing at all! What a relief! Hardest part: holding the baby, my carry-on, and the diaper bag, while folding up/unfolding the stroller at the end of the terminal. But, thanks to a couple very kind strangers, I survived. And here I am!!!

3. Speaking of flying... while there I had the first person to be rude to me about my baby! While getting in the front of the line to get on the plane, a perk to flying with a child under 5!, a not-so-kind lady took a look at my baby sleeping in the stroller and said "he's sleeping now... so probably he will be screaming the whole flight" UM.. WHO SAYS THAT! I was baffled. Bewildered. Shocked. All I could mutter was "i hope not!" While on the plane, I worked extra hard to prove her wrong, and thought of all these amazing come-backs. "Probably... hopefully we'll sit next to you." "Sometimes, you just have to let your child scream." "He screams so loud it used to hurt my ears! But i'm used to it now"... etc. PS... I'm not a bad mom. These are just rhetorts and don't necessarily convey the truth! Any other good ones I've missed?

4. Colton met his future favorite 2nd cousin. LB of Kelley @ Daily Sips met us in KS for them to meet and play. We got so many ADORABLE pictures of them. Colton is almost 2 months, LB is 5 months, and the difference in their size is ridiculous (and hilarious!!!) Pictures to come... i don't have any way to upload them off my camera right now.

5. Colton decided he wants to be a bully. When laying next to LB for pics, the first thing he does is reach over and grab LB's hair and pull. Luckily that boy has a tough scalp! Don't worry though... he definitely got Colton back. He tried to roll onto him and play with him. It was hysterical!

6. Has anyone else noticed that my life has become consumed with baby? Seriously... what did I do.. talk about... think about... before him? He is my world and I abso-freaking-love him so much!!!

7. The unit Brad deployed this last time just deployed again. It doesn't seem like they have been home long enough to deploy again! Seriously.. talk about taking this "one year dwell time minimum" to the absolute minimum. I can't imagine what these women are going through so soon after we just went through it. I have been praying and praying for them.

Okay.. thats enough miscellany for this monday.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Christmas Card Time!

As long as I can remember, my family has always sent out Christmas cards. They were always the kind that had a picture of either just us kids or the whole family, along with some sort of decoration around them or words and our names. Similar to these at shutterfly:

I LOVE these Christmas cards! I have always wanted to send out my own, but as my husband's family does not send out these cards, I told him I would wait until we had a baby. And so now.. it's on. Christmas card time, here we come!

Speaking of shutterfly... I love them. I made Brad a photo book of the first few years of us for our anniversary this year, and it was so easy to make and he loved it. I gave it to him about a month late... but nevertheless, it was pretty amazing. You can find photo books here:

Anyway, Christmas cards. We haven't taken a Christmas card picture yet, but we are debating between one that has just Colton in the picture, like this one:

or one that has our whole family, like this one:

What do you think? I am torn, and my husband really isn't being much help! I love them both! PS... the pictures they use as examples are pretty much perfect... I am not sure that our photo will be of that quality! Hopefully it would still be cute though :)

Hopefully, I can get our cards out before Christmas... I am not sure if I will be able to though!

PS.. Shutterfly has a wonderful promotion right now where bloggers can get 50 FREE photo cards!! Learn more about it at: .. pretty amazing. Shutterfly has always been so good at sending our coupons. We even got $20 free as a baby gift from Shutterfly! A-mazing.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

One Month

Well, I don't have much to say, or much time to say it. This past month has been a whirlwind of .... amazingness. Brad and I have watched Colton grow and grow and it is wonderful. He has gone from a teeny tiny infant (okay, he still is that!) who sleeps all the time, doesn't have too much awake time, and doesn't eat much at a time. He still sleeps quite a bit, but he has increased periods of awakeness, with increasing alertness. He now LOVES watching mobiles - the mobile over his swing is his favorite. I tell you, he can stare at that mobile waving above him for 10 or 15 minutes straight, just observing. It is so sweet! He sleeps better at night than before. He will go to sleep in his bassinet around 10 or 1030 every night, as opposed to 1230, and wakes only 2 times usually to eat. Both times he goes right to sleep after he eats for an hour. During the day, he does NOT want to be apart from either Brad or I. If he is being cuddled or sleeping on one of us, life is good for him. If we try to put him down, not so much. His swing is our saving grace, the only thing that keeps him happy (sometimes) and lets me get something done!
Brad has been home from work the whole first month, which was SUCH a blessing. He only went back to work on Monday (Coltons 1 month bday) and now he still gets to come home around 10am every day, except once a week he has a full day. This should go on for another couple weeks. I honestly can't believe how blessed we are for him to have this kind of time to spend with us. So many army wives spend some or most or even all of the first few months of their child's lives with their husband deployed or on a TDY, it is quite common, and I know that the Lord has blessed us tremendously and planned the timing of Colton's birth just for us.
My favorite thing that Colton has learned to do this past month, is smile in response to my smile. He doesn't do it every time I smile at him, just about half the time, but it is so stinkin sweet! I love his little smile, his tiny dimples in his cheeks, his toothless gums.

My baby woke up... Until next time!

Monday, October 18, 2010

3 weeks old

So, every time I try to add a picture, google chrome glitches and shuts down and loses my whole post! :( so no photos this time. And... this would have been a long post but it probably will not be any more!

So my baby is now 3 weeks old... where does the time go!!!

We had almost one week of "just the 3 of us" after my parents left, before Brads mom came to visit, and it was so fun. I felt like we were playing house... except for the 3am feedings of course! We had a few fun outings and Colton did so good! We even went to the mall for me to buy a pair of non-pregnancy jeans that fit... not quite the same size as before, but not pregnancy! woohoo!! We spent several days at home the whole day, and usually I would get a little stir-crazy doing that very often, but now that there is a baby here to take care of, I didn't get stir crazy. It was cozy and fun, and we all loved that time. I left Colton with Brad for the very first time that week. I only went to the grocery store and it was right after a feeding so i knew he would be okay, but i was still a bit nervous! I was gone an hour and a half, and was definitely ready to be home by the end of that time!

Brads mom came and we had fun with her here. Her and Colton bonded and spent lots of cuddle time together. During that almost week she was here, brad and I left colton for the very first time. We just went to walmart, and only for 30 minutes, but it was quite a big step for us! Everything was fine, of course, and I was very proud of us. Brad and I tried to go on walks every evening that week, and usually Colton loved the walks. A couple of the times he fussed, but I think those days were a little windier and was making his face, the only part of him exposed, a little chilly. Poor baby!

The same day that Jo left, Megan, my sister, arrived. I was so excited to have her here! Another first: I left Colton with Brad through a feeding for the first time! Meg and I wanted to hit the mall and do a little shopping here, but that isn't as easy with a baby.. so I pumped right before we left and Brad bottle fed him when he woke up. He did so good with the bottle, what a champ! I was a little nervous about it, but he ate 3oz in 15 minutes... hungry baby! It usually takes him about an hour to eat the same amount when nursing. I think he just likes the closeness when nursing though :) BTW, while shopping, I bought another pair of jeans that are only ONE size bigger than my pre-pregnancy jeans. WOOHOO! Hopefully not much longer, I miss having so many jean options. Right now I only have 3 (meg brought me a pair of jeans! Thanks sis!).

Colton had his 2 week appt today, which is actually 3 weeks but we werent able to make an appt for earlier. He now weighs 9 lbs 9 oz, almost 1 lb bigger than his birth weight! What a good grower!!! They also checked his jaundice levels again, and he is at a 16. That is the same it was when we went to the hospital 2 weeks ago. Hopefully it is just breastfeeding jaundice, most likely it is, but they will re check at our 2 month appt. If it hasn't dropped by then, we will discuss further treatment. Hopefully it has though!

Well.. sorry about the photos but hopefully next time I can get it to not freeze up when uploading them!
Have a great week friends!!!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

1 week old photos

crying shouldnt be this cute...

daddy, baby, and cat
on our way to church

Brad, Colton, and Lambie taking a nap

precious sleeping baby
baby is more entertaining than tv
cuddling in the recliner

the first week has been a whirlwind. my parents came in town to meet their grandson and they loved every minute of it. they were so much help as well- we didn't have to think about meals at all or do any dishes. Also... Brad and I got to nap and put the gparents on "baby duty" (which I think they secretly really enjoyed!) which was a big help for those nights we didn't sleep!

during this first week we did spend one night and one day in the hospital again. when we went in for his 2-day after discharge appt they checked his bilirubin levels and he was at a 21- which requires intervention. So we were immediately sent upstairs to the pediatric unit at the hospital to put our baby in a bili bed. It was so sad - he had to wear baby shades so he couldn't see and we couldn't hold him at all except when he was eating. I was a slight mess about it and didn't sleep at all the whole night. Colton didn't seem to mind too much actually. He fussed a little bit but we were able to calm him down just talking to him and holding his hands. luckily one day and night was all it took to get his levels down to an acceptable level and now he his jaundice is almost gone!

His sleeping is going well - he sleeps for 3 or 4 hours at a time during the night and during the day we have noticed more periods of awakeness lately. he loves to just look around. its very fun - the first few days he slept in between every feeding and had very few awake periods (i hear that is normal for most babies, esp those with jaundice). I love seeing him so curious about the world! It is so sweet!

Have a wonderful week everyone! :)

Friday, October 1, 2010

Birth Story

I first want to say... giving birth is definitely the most amazing experience of my life. Seeing my son for the first time and holding him for the very first time is something I will always remember and always cherish. He is absolutely amazing and I am every day thankful that the Lord has given brad and I such an amazing opportunity.. such a wonderful blessing .. to take care of a tiny little helpless baby, and help him grow into an amazing child (although hopefully not very soon. i want him to stay little forever.)

So here is a summed up version of Colton's birth:

My water broke around 4am Saturday morning, although I wasn't having very many or very intense contractions. Brad asked if we could sleep a couple more hours before going to the hospital since I wasn't having contractions 2-3 minutes apart yet. Haha he definitely didn't understand! At the hospital, they gave me pitocin to get my contractions jump-started and to get me to dialate.. I was only at 1-2 cm when arriving. Around noon, they re-checked and I hadn't dialated any more. My contractions were then one minute long and pretty intense, with only one minute in between each. Since i couldn't get an epidurral until 4cm, and it didn't look like that would happen any time soon, I went ahead and asked for pain medications. I had thought I didn't want anything but the epidurral because I didn't want my baby to come out sleepy, but the nurse assured me that pain medication will help me dialate faster since my body will be more relaxed. She added it to the IV and from that point on, I was pretty drowsy. I remember I could feel the pain about the same as before but I was too drowsy to care anymore. I drifted in and out of sleep for several more hours and when they checked me again at 4 or so, around the time the pain meds were wearing off, I had dialated to a 5. Thankfully! So I got the epidurral and slept another hour. Around 645 it was pushing time and Colton was born around 715. The pushing wasn't painful- but it was hard. I am so thankful that I got the epidurral because this big baby ripped me - vaginally and cervically. That would have been very painful. Because of the tears, I had to get sewn up (obviously) and it took two doctors to accomplish this. I was not allowed to hold Colton right away like I had asked. I wanted to hold him before he was even washed up, but the nurses wouldn't allow it and so I couldn't hold him for almost an hour after he was born. When I finally was able to, it was beautiful and amazing. I am so thankful for him and I can't imagine my life without him.

Brad has been the best dad I could have ever hoped he would be. He changes diapers more than I do (a lot more!) and he loves Colton so much. We are constantly "bickering" over whose turn it is to hold the baby. I never knew that having this baby would increase the love I have for my husband. It definitely has and the Lord has blessed us more than I would have ever hoped.

There's more to say.. but my baby is hungry now. :)

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Welcome Baby

Colton Pierce was born Saturday, September 25th at 7:15pm, 8lbs 10oz, 22.5 inches long

this was one of his first hospital pics

getting ready to come home for the first time

more to come... not much time right now! :)

Friday, September 17, 2010

8lb Baby

Well I had another Doctor appt on Wednesday. I always go with such high hopes that I will hear something along the lines of "woah.. youre already in labor! couldnt you feel those intense contractions?" haha. I know that this will probably NOT happen and that I will know when I am in labor, but it's good to dream right? I did hear though that this baby is still in the right position to come out (oh good!) and that she guesses that he will not get here until 40 weeks or so (Oh great... 2 more weeks of this?! lol). Also... her guess as to his size right now is 8lbs, and that he will be 9 if she is correct and he gets here close to the due date. Holy big baby, Batman! Brad said "Good! I hope he's 10lbs... we could have ourselves a Saints linebacker as a son!" Um... only if you give birth to him, honey. I'm praying even more earnestly that he comes out NOW to make this all a little easier on my poor body! Also... the story at the hospital on post is that they do not induce labor until 10 days past the due date. That date happens to be 10/10/10. How cool of a birthday would that be?! Although I definitely do not want to have to be induced that much past my due date... it would be slightly worth it for him to have the coolest birthday of 2010. I guess this is all in God's timing though, right? If He picks our baby to have the coolest birthday of the year, and me to be pregnant (gulp) 3 more weeks... then I should accept this and know that God's timing is always the best timing. Maybe He is teaching Brad and I patience... or teaching me how to survive with little sleep without being slightly crabby :) We shall see, I suppose.

Well everyone.. the weekend is upon us! Any exciting weekend plans??

Friday, September 10, 2010

apple cider doughnuts!

I have been craving and craving apple cider doughnuts the past few weeks... but there is no cider mill anywhere near me!! Which is really weird to me, growing up in Kansas there are cider mills everywhere, or apple markets, or other places that have these delicious cider doughnuts. So I decided to order some cider doughnuts from the amazing Louisburg Cider Mill (mmmm.. they are delicious!) a couple weeks ago, but all that did was make me want them even more! And unfortunately, ordering donuts and paying for shipping makes them cost a lot more than they are probably worth. :(
SO: I decided to attempt to MAKE my own cider doughnuts! How hard could it be, right? Here is the recipe I picked:

Apple Cider Doughnuts
  • 1 cup apple cider
  • 3 1/2 cups flour
  • 2t baking powder
  • 1t baking soda
  • 1/2 t ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 1/8 t ground nutmeg
  • 4 T butter at room temperature
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • Shortening or vegetable oil for frying
  1. In sauce pan over medium-low heat, gently reduce cider to 1/4 cup (about 20 minutes). Let cool.
  2. Meanwhile, combine flour, baking powder & soda, cinnamon, salt, and nutmeg. Set aside.
  3. Using a mixer, beat butter and sugar on medium until smooth. Add eggs one at a time, continuing to beat.
  4. Reduce speed to low and gradually add reduced cider and buttermilk, mixing just until combined. Add flour mixture and continue to mix just until dough comes together.
  5. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and sprinkle generously with flour. Turn dough onto one sheet and sprinkle top with flour. Flatten until 1/2 inch thick. Transfer dough to freezer and freeze until slightly hardened, approximately 20 minutes.
  6. Pull out of freezer & cut doughnut shapes. Place cut doughnuts and holes onto other baking sheet and refrigerate another 20 to 30 minutes.
  7. Add enough oil or shortening (I picked shortening.. the doughnuts are less greasy I hear when you pick shortening!) to a deep sided pan to measure almost 2" deep. Heat over medium to 350*.
  8. Carefully add donuts to oil and fry each side until golden-brown. Drain on paper towels.
Now... I read this recipe and thought "sounds simple enough.. I can totally do this!" So I got all the necessary ingredients and equipment and attempted it. I did not, however, purchase an oil thermometer, so I had to guess the temperature and do the fry a donut hole, check to see if the inside is as done as the outside method. It failed and failed. Finally, I called my grandma (who I swear knows everything about everything to do with cooking/baking/frying, etc). She suggested baking them on a wire rack with a cookie sheet underneath it to catch the oil after frying. She said that should dry up the inside a bit. And guess what? She is a genius.. It worked! my done on the outside but not on the inside doughnuts were done all the way around after 5 minutes in a 350 oven! I wish I had a picture to show you, but I don't. Anyway... here's the glaze recipe, because they don't taste as good without a topping:

Apple Cider Doughnut Glaze
  • Simmer 1 cup apple cider until reduced to 1/4 cup (again). Whisk in confectioners sugar until smooth and glossy, I used almost 1 cup.
  • In another bowl, mix 1 cup sugar & 2 t cinnamon in a shallow bowl. Set aside
  • After doughnuts are done, dip one side in the glaze and then in the cinnamon sugar mixture.
mmm... these are delicious! It makes about a dozen... and I have eaten one. My husband has eaten 5... yes, FIVE... since last night.

Speaking of the husband.... Our 2 year anniversary is coming up on Monday! Isn't that precious? The picture at the beginning of this post is a picture taken of us almost exactly 2 years ago. So much has changed since then!

Baby Talk:

I had another appointment yesterday, which was not very exciting actually. Baby's heart beat is the exact average of what most baby's heart beats are (which it has been since like... week 7). I think that is probably good though! I asked if there was any way to tell if he is breech or if he has already flipped himself into the right birthing position, and so she pulled in an ultrasound machine and said that we could find out right then. I wish Brad could have been there, but he had to work and didn't know that we would have the ability to see an ultrasound.. anyway, this baby is absolutely precious and I cried a few tears yesterday... He is adorable! His head looked HUGE.. but I am hoping that is just the ultrasound distorting it a bit :) .. His belly also looked big, which is good because chunky babies are absolutely adorable and because that means he is growing quite well inside of me. The midwife showed me his little hands, and I saw all 10 fingers. I think he actually had some of his fingers in his mouth, but it was hard to tell. Anyway.. all this to say that he is head down, feet up, ready to come out. I would have guessed this being as I feel his hiccups so low and such powerful kicks up in my ribs. But it is good to know for sure!

Anyway... that is pretty much it! They won't check dilation until 40 weeks or until I am having real contractions for a couple days with no increase in intensity or duration. Or until I am in labor at the hospital, of course. I do have appts for the next 3 weeks scheduled though, but I am hoping I don't need them!

Any guesses on when he decides to arrive? I keep telling him there's a whole big world out here, and he can actually stretch out (which he so wants to do... but unfortunately either a rib, or a bladder, or the side of my belly, etc. stops him from fully stretching) Hopefully I can sweet talk him out early! Brad even told him he would buy him anything he wanted if he appeared by a certain date... with suggestions like a pony, a toddler motorcycle (hah.. we'll see about that..), an ATV... really mostly things Brad probably wants to buy him anyway!


Sunday, September 5, 2010

24 Days and a Wake-Up

Yes.... that is all my friends. My due date is EXACTLY 24 days and a wake-up from today. Doesn't it sound so much sooner to say 3 and a half weeks though? :)
Brad is back from SERE and it is SO good to have him here. Our house feels like a home now, we have been able to finish completely unpacking and organizing... I saved the garage and the bonus room for us to do together, he didn't get completely out of all the moving responsibilities :)
We have also been finishing the baby room. I will soon post pics of it because I think it is super adorable! Just a few more wall hangings, and we have everything we need for it. And everything we (think) we need for baby's arrival! So just to finish washing EVERYTHING. I have washed the clothes and burp rags and sheets and most of the blankets... so maybe just 1 or 2 more loads of some of the rest of the blankets. Also I haven't done any of the bigger sizes of baby clothes... I don't know when I am supposed to do that? I feel like it's too soon to wash clothes he can't wear until he is 3-6 months! Maybe?
I have been really trying to enjoy the last part of being pregnant... I won't do it again for quite awhile! :) But.. it seems the longer this goes on, aka the bigger I get, the more I am ready for this child to get here and be in my arms instead of my belly. My hands and feet have swollen to crazy sizes... As of several weeks ago, my wedding ring began fitting my pinky perfectly! As of a couple days ago, it no longer fits my pinky. Just today, Brad and I were sitting on the back porch watching the cat and dog chase each other around the yard (it was so funny, I wish I had a video camera because they just ran and ran after each other for a good 15 minutes solid!) when Brad looks down at my feet and says "WOAH! I knew your feet were swollen.. but they are HUGE!" ha... i guess when it becomes that noticeable, you can't deny it any more. I kept thinking my feet weren't that bad... but they are.
Also... (as Brad has also pointed out) I have begun to have the "pregnant waddle" and my pace has slowed dramatically. We try to go on walks together every evening and just since Brad has been home, which has been exactly a week today, he has noticed a decrease in the speed of our walks, and a change in my walk. I tried so hard to not have the pregnant waddle! If I make an effort, I can avoid it. But the waddle comes naturally right now.. So I may just embrace it. :)
All this to tell you.. I am so ready. The room is ready. Everything is washed. We have decided to pack our hospital bag and begin praying that God delivers this baby a teensy bit earlier than the due date... as long as he is fully developed and healthy, we would prefer earlier! We shall see though. I suppose patience is a virtue that I am still learning!
Well I will keep you up-dated on this baby and his arrival decisions! I am taking bets though :)

Sunday, August 22, 2010


Sometimes, I need the Lord to remind me of how many blessings he has bestowed upon me, and I don't even know it. But He always knows it and I think he enjoys reminding me that He loves me.. that He cares about me.. and that He cares about the things I care about, however small they probably are. Lately has been one of those times. How easy would it be for me to pout over small things and ignore all the good, amazing things that are going on in my life. So I will focus on these things in this post, as a praise to the Lord for being the Provider, the Comforter, the Healer, and the Lover of my soul.

- Brad and I are having a baby in about 5 weeks!!! We get to be parents!!!! We have been praying together for months that the Lord would be present throughout this pregnancy, and throughout us learning to be parents. We have been praying for the health of this child and that, above all else, this child would grow to know Christ as Lord and Savior... that is of utmost importance in our role as parents.. that we teach our child the Truth that we know, that the Lord has promised. John 3:16 style.

- Facing the challenge and the excitement of becoming parents has really deepened my marriage with Brad. We have prayed together more than ever, we have really been bonded over similar worries and anxieties and been such a comfort to each other as we both learn (or re-learn) every day to give these anxieties to the Lord... 1 Peter 5:7... really I must learn this every day, Brad not quite as often! He does much better in this than I do :)

- This move has been quite an adventure, and it is really easy for me to focus on the negatives of it, to focus on the loneliness of being in a brand new place all alone (but Brad gets back in about a week!) But I know that being here is God's will and I can already see Him proving to me that He wants me here. I don't know what His plan for us here really is, but I do know that His plan for us IS here. He has been proving this to me by:
1)finding a Church so soon. The first day that Brad left I went to a Church we had found online and loved the service. Usually you can't tell much about a church from their website, but that is all we had to go on this time and it has been such a blessing already!
2)Having that Church be so welcoming and reaching out to me. I have had two men on the visitation team stop by my house (a deacon and a guy on the worship team) to welcome me and see if there is any questions I might have or anything they can do to help me feel more welcome there. I have had one lady from the Church e-mail me and call me. I was invited to a newcomer's class (which I went to by myself!) introducing me to the opportunities in the Church. And the deacon who stopped by my house invited me to go to lunch today after Church with him, his wife, and two of their grandchildren.
3)Understanding that I am not someone who likes to be alone very often, and bringing things to fill my days, or at least some of my days! :)
-I have family members that are willing and able to come stay with me to make things a little easier, both now and after baby is born!

-although my house has had somethings that have needed dealt with, the neighborhood is wonderful and really the Lord has provided... this house fits our needs and most of our wants!

-Brad and I are able to get all the baby items we think we need (how do you really know what baby items you actually need though?!) without it stressing us financially.

Since I know that the Lord truly cares about the things I care about, I am holding onto His promise that He will give me the desires of my heart. (Psalm 37:4) I do know that He knows the desires of my heart even better than I do... and that usually my desires are transformed into what His desires for me already are. Not always.. I am a little stubborn sometimes.. but in the end I always lose. (which in all actuality is winning, right?)

Anyway... I have been praying that the Lord would continue to reveal to us where He wants us within the Fort Bragg/Fayetteville community as far as ministries, that He would provide us with good friends who would lift us up and encourage us in our beginning parent-hood journey, and that He would be visibly present in our lives to us and to those around us.

This post might feel a bit scattered, it is midnight right now and I was in bed when I felt like I just needed to write this all down! Part of that might be the insomnia that comes with being uncomfortable due to 35 weeks of pregnancy, but who knows :)

Blessings to you!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Brad left about 10 days ago and life has been a little up-and-down since then. He left on a Sunday, super early in the morning for his 10ish hour drive to Alabama. We had decided that I would go to Church after he left that morning by myself... partly because then I would not be spending the whole day by myself in our apartment and partly because I really do want to find a home church and get involved pretty quickly. The church we had picked out (from their website.. haha) I actually really liked. I found the welcome desk and was invited for Brad and I to join a Sunday School for military couples. When I saw that they have a large deaf ministry I just knew that I had to bring my mom back the next week. The rest of the day and all the next day were quite lonely... I didn't know what to do, I didn't know where to go, we had no stuff in our house except an air mattress and two outdoor chairs... I was definitely feeling a little down. Luckily, Tuesday I got to go pick my mom up from the airport and on Wednesday the movers delivered our stuff. I don't think I would have survived on Wednesday without my mom being here. There were two guys carrying everything in and the one from Missouri was really nice, didn't talk too much but he worked hard and listened to us when we said which room the boxes and furniture went in. The other guy was one of the rudest people I have ever met. He made fun of our bicycles, complained every time i said something went upstairs, put boxes marked "kitchen" or "baby" in the garage so my mom and I would have to carry them in after that. He also told me that once he set a box or piece of furniture down, he would not move it, so we better be 100% sure we know exactly where everything is going or else we would be the ones rearranging everything to make room for other things. He tried to refuse to take the boxes we had emptied and broken down unless we paid him per box, luckily the other guy heard him doing this and told us that their companies get paid by the army to offer this service to us. Oh gosh was i mad at this guy! He even started making fun of me for unpacking clothes boxes while my mom did kitchen boxes, saying I was letting her do all the hard work and I was a slacker... I don't really know who he thinks he is but my "interactive customer evaluation" that the army asks us to do about our moves is going to reflect very poorly on him!!!

anyway... i need to stop ranting about this guy, he just gets me so angry! so my mom and I spent the next couple days unpacking and organizing the house. it was a very long process this time, probably because Brad wasn't here so it took longer than when we moved in January. We didn't finish, there are still boxes in the garage but most of those are marked "army" and there are boxes in the bonus room but most of those are marked "craft stuff" or "books"... and I don't know what to do with my craft stuff or all of our books... so I am keeping things for Brad to do, he doesn't get off easy with this move!

One day that my mom was here we decided that we'd had enough unpacking and needed to have some fun, so we found a beach that was supposedly less than 2 hours away and headed off for an afternoon in the sun. It probably really would have been only an hour and 45 minutes, except the GPS took us the weirdest possible way, and there was crazy traffic once we got closer to it. But, we found Wrightsville Beach, found a parking on a side street at a meter, and walked to the beach. I would have thought it wouldn't be too busy since school is in session already and it was a weekday, but there were still tons of people there! I guess that's what happens when you go to a public access beach, though. Either way it was beautiful, and so fun to know that i can drive from my house to the beach to spend an afternoon there, and then drive back home right after! Living in the midwest my whole life, I have never had that ability before.

Well my mom left two days ago and now I am here by myself once again. It's not as bad as last time since I have stuff here, we have TV and internet, there are still things that need done around here, but I am quite lonely. I didn't leave my house once yesterday (how sad huh?) but mostly that is because I had three people come to fix different things (the internet, the exterminator, and the work order guy). Today though I will venture out of the house! Probably just to WalMart to get milk though.. and maybe to the newcomers class at the church i have gone to the last couple weeks. Part of me wants to wait until Brad gets back to go to this one-time newcomers class, but the other part of me wants to go just because it will give me something to do this evening. Does my life sound sad right now? Because it is.

On a bright note... I think I get a new dish washer installed, hopefully today! Ours is broken so I have been having to hand wash everything. My mom hand washed everything while she was here but now it's all me. The work order guy (i don't know what his name or title is?) said it is not fixable so he will try to get a new one installed for me today or the next day. I can't wait!

PS... my mother-in-law comes in 6 days. I can't wait!!!!!!!!

Friday, August 6, 2010

Heading East

On Monday, Brad and I began our journey PCSing from MO to NC... a total of 964.88 miles, and my first move out of the midwest. We were probably quite a spectacle... Brad driving a truck, with a motorcycle loaded in the bed, pulling a trailer, with the mustang on it. Me, 8 months pregnant, following him in my squeaky old Camry that is stuffed to the limit. The cat was in the truck, the dog in the car with me. I will admit I was a little bit nervous about driving that far while I feel like I have to pee every 10 minutes (and sometimes I really do!) but everything was smooth and seamless. I can't tell you how many times I thought "I should have to pee... it's been 3 hours... but I am sure I can make it another hour" and I was right. I could just tell that we had family and friends praying for us those two driving days and that made all the difference.
So here we are... in NC. The state is beautiful! We have moved into our new rental home, and I love it. Only a few minor set-backs with the whole moving thing, and I think I will tell you about them now so I can end this post all positively!
1. The house is dirty and there is a spider-infestation all around the outside. EW. Remember how I hate tics? Well I think I hate spiders even more! Brad and I were going to just suck it up and clean the house, spray for spiders, and whatnot by ourselves, but it seemed the more and more we cleaned and he sprayed the more we realized how much stuff there actually needed to be done to this house before I felt like it was ready for us to really live here and to bring a baby to live here. So today when we were talking to the property manager, we mentioned how disappointed we are with the condition of the cleanliness of this house when the lease had made such a statement about the expectations when we move out (carpets professionally cleaned, yard fumigated since we have pets, everything in a state of cleanliness and order, etc.) Well.. I am not a confrontational person so mentioning this was very nerve-racking and I almost didn't do it but I am so glad that I did! She has someone coming to spray early this next week and she has hired a professional cleaning service to come out and scrub appliances, clean the floors, shampoo the carpets, clean the windows (there are spider webs between the windows and the screens.. I don't know how! gross!), clean the base boards and scrub the walls. I am so glad that I was not a push-over on this and brought it up! This house was about to start stressing me out!
2) At my last DR appt before we left MO, my Dr reminded me that I now need to start my every other week appointments and to set up my insurance and make an appointment here as soon as possible. So, the very first day we were here Brad and I went to Tricare on post and switched out of the midwest region to the region here, got assigned a Dr, went there to get a referral to the OB/midwife section at the hospital, went there to give them my medical records from my MO dr, and was told to wait for the nurses to review my records and decide which dr to assign me to. The next day, they called me to set up my first appointment, but unfortunately they are not able to get me in for 3 weeks. I dont think this is a big deal, but my last appointment was already 2 weeks ago, when I was at 30 weeks. I will be 35 weeks at my up-coming appt, which is when they start doing every week appointment since 36 weeks the baby is no longer considered premature. Now.. I feel confident that everything will be fine but I am just a little disappointed that it is taking this long to get to the dr here, and only a little nervous that it I will go into early labor and have to go to a hopsital and a dr i have never been to before. Hopefully that will not happen! We have been praying and praying that God takes control of this pregnancy and so I know I should cast all my worries about it to Him... but sometimes that is easier said than done!
3. Brad leaves on Sunday for 3 weeks for a school that has a no communication rule (not even letters, how primitive!) I don't much like being somewhere where I don't know anybody... and I like it even less since I am not allowed to travel (the hospital made me sign this waiver saying I would not travel past 32 weeks without dr consent, but I can't get consent because I can't see the dr any time soon! i'm not sure I would have gone anywhere anyway, but it would be nice to have the option).

ON THE BRIGHT SIDE (and yes, there is a bright side to my complaints)
My mom is coming to stay for a week on Tuesday!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I can't wait!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! The movers will drop our stuff off (no more air mattress and achy back for this big bellied girl) a day or two after she arrives, and life will be much better having our stuff back! Also.. the sooner Brad finishes this dumb school he is going to, he will get back, and we will only have less than 4 weeks until our little guy should enter this world. EEE! Also... I get to start putting together and decorating our nursery, which I have wanted to do since I found out we were going to have this baby. We have been talking and dreaming about it (mostly my dreaming and us talking about that actually...) and now it all gets to come to fruition! Our little baby boy is going to have the cutest sailing/nautical themed nursery you have ever seen. I have looked at hundreds of bedding and found one that we both fell in love with. And there are so many cutesy nautical themed decorations for baby rooms out there! Most of them are online unfortunately but I suppose I am perfectly okay shopping online. Also.. my mom leaves and I will be here a week and a half by myself but then Brads mom is coming to stay with me for the last part of Brads school and the first few days after he returns. It will be so good to have her here! I only have like 10 - 12 days that I have to be here by myself while Brads gone... which is good.

Okay.. super long post but I feel like moving adds a ton of stuff that could be said! And I am really going to try to not wait another 3 months to update... we shall see though :)

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

a terrible tale of tics

Okay. I gave in. I tried and tried not to start a blog... but here I am. We'll see how this goes :)

I could start with an overview of my life.. but as people that I know will be the ones mostly reading this, that would feel a bit redundant. So here is just a tidbit of my day:

Wednesdays are my days to clean the house fully and completely.. (hence the blog starting!). Brushing my dog is part of my cleaning the house process, and while brushing her I happen to check in her ears.. only to find a tic on her right ear!!!!!!!!! I'm sure that tics do not freak most people out in such a huge way like they do to me, but I was mortified! So I'm freaking out trying to figure out what to do, wishing I had enough cell coverage in my house to call someone, doing a crazy jumpy tic dance, squealing. Miley of course is freaking out right along with me, although having no idea what it is all about. Finally I calm my breathing down, put my hair in a pony, grab the dog and some tweezers, and lock us in the bathroom, absolutely determined to win the fight against the tic. I start folding Miley's ear down, trying to keep her from squirming, and wonder how to get this tic out of her ear, it's down pretty deep in there. So I'm trying to pull it with the tweezers but that sucker does NOT want to let go, and the dog isn't helping any either by being so squirmy. Eventually I win and pull that tic out of her ear and flush it down the toilet. TRIUMPH!!!!! Miley all of a sudden is jumping around, wagging her tail, and I can only assume she feels the relief of having her ear freed from this terrible, terrible tic.

I totally won that battle.

Now, you would think that I would be pretty tic savvy lately. You see, Brad and I went on a hike with our little fluff ball last week, and ever since then we have been pulling hundreds and hundreds of tics off of our dog daily it seems. I just have to find the tics and part her hair, Brad does the gross part. It's really a good deal! But we put Frontline on her for the first time this year since then and thought that would get rid of any we may have missed. Apparently not. Frontline.. its been 5 days. You should work by now.

Anyway... thanks for reading my terrible tale of tics.
Later! :)