Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy New Year!

"Let this New Year be the beginning of a new life....Let all blessed old things stay, but let the clutter of our heads and hearts be removed, that new inspirations and new affections may come in and gladden our lives."

C.B. Emerson

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Happy Birthday, Garrett!

Garrett turned 5 yesterday, Dec. 29th. We had a party earlier in the month (celebrated December birthday's with Jesse's side of the family), so Carlina shared that party. We had another party last night with my mom and her hubby. He requested a white cake with white frosting, chicken nuggets and broccoli. He ate the broccoli but no nuggets and a piece of cake. Jesse and I got him a stencil set. He is really starting to love to draw...taking after all of the other artists in the family. Mom got him some undies, pjs, a color book and crayons.

Here is a short version of Garrett's birth story:

The doctor decided to induce me about 5 days early....he was due Jan 3rd. Looking back now, I would not have allowed that...but I was sure that I would go into labor before then. Katie was 3 days early and I thought I *might* go early again. It was not to happen...Jesse and I checked into the hospital early Monday morning (6am). I had not had 1 contraction...until they started the pitocin. I got an epi pretty much right away and didn't feel any worked perfectly. Around 3:30 p.m. I was complete and with 2 pushes, little Garrett Jesse made his entrance into the world...7lbs 13oz 20 inches long. He had blonde hair and blue eyes and was so adorable. He didn't cry right away, they really had to prod him to get him going and he didn't want to nurse right away. I think that I was induced too early and that caused some problems, I regret that now. Also, since then I have not been able to go into labor on my own...I don't know if it is related, but I wonder. We brought him home on New Years Eve and he settled in very well.

He has the sweetest personality and is so much fun to be around. I thank God for my wonderful little boy!

Bad dog...

We have to get rid of our dog and we are all bummed about it. He is 9 months old and a good family dog, he loves all of us...BUT he keeps getting out (can open the screen doors himself) and the kids let him out sometimes. There is a leash law in our town and besides that Oliver is not friendly to other people. He barks at them menacingly. He has never bitten anyone, I think he is just a big coward, but he scares people. I have never had a dog like that mean to other people. He thinks he is a rotweiller or chow, I guess. I am going to advertise him for free and if that doesn't work I will have to take him to the humane society. He has been reported to the police and the police have visited us. It is sad but he is just too aggressive for town and if he gets out again, that is it...we will be fined.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Alicia has pneumonia...

She's had a cough for a long time...fevers started coming on Christmas Eve. Of course, everything closed through the holidays but I was finally able to take her in today. She had a temp of 101 this morning when I brought her in...raspy and watery sounding lungs. She looks awful, poor thing. I hope the antibiotics help and it doesn't get worse!!!

Sunday, December 28, 2008


DH and I have made the decision to bring all the kids home again next year...I am happy with the decision...a little stressed but it is really what I wanted and what I think is best. I will have a senior, sophomore, 8th grader, 6th grader, 3rd grader, kindergartner, 3year old and 1 year old.

I want to get a start on searching for supplies early. My SIL has some stuff that I will be able to use for my 3rd grader and that will help. She homeschools her 2 girls.

I am going to try to buy a few things a month...first to look for Colton's government/economics stuff.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Funny Tommy

Jesse and I got Thomas a superman action figure for Christmas. He is always jumping from the arm of the sofa to the cushion saying "I'm superman!!!"....when he opened the gift he said "This is creepy, mommy."

I love this picture...

Anna is such a cute little girl...her little voice is so squeaky and high pitched.

Christmas Day photos

Wonderful Christmas...

We opened one gift on Christmas Eve morning..Garrett got a hot wheels track, Katie an EZ bake oven and Alicia an outfit for her American Girl doll.

Jesse decided on Christmas Eve that it would be fun to go over and spend the night at his mom's house, she agreed, so we packed up and left...taking all of our gifts, pizzas, food for Christmas, etc. We had a fun evening with Jesse's mom, 2 sisters and their kids. It is a blessing that MIL has lots of room for everyone. The girls all piled in the living room by the fire with Jesse, myself, Anna, Colton, Thomas and Garrett downstairs.

The next morning we opened gifts and had a wonderful meal of barbequed beef ribs and 2 ducks along with all the trimmings. Jesse had to go to work that night, so we went home and he to work about 5:30.

The last photo is of Grandma's tree and all the gifts!!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Random pictures...

Okay, I hate this red and green backdrop...but it stays for awhile! Merry Christmas!!!

Jesse got his cpap machine today. I know it will improve his sleep and his life! The sleep therapist said that his chart was one of the worst that she had ever seen.

We went with Grandpa Jim to SC today. He took us out for Mexican food and then we went to Walmart...mad house!!! It was balmy today comparatively....20 degrees!

We had Grandpa Terry over for dinner. We made chicken pot pie. He commented that it was a "family favorite". I then remembered that we had served it to him recently in the past. We do like it but I don't usually make it more than once a month, lol.

Santa surprised us last night. He knocked on the door about 8pm and bellowed "Merry Christmas" when I opened the door. It scared Julia and I out of our minds. He came in and gave Thomas candy canes. Thomas wasn't scared at all, I was so amazed. Garrett was in the bath. I brought him out with a towel around him and he told santa he wanted a train set for Christmas. Thomas yelled he wanted a "race car!". We have always told the kids Santa is not real but Garrett still wants to believe and we don't try to convince him, the other kids will soon enough. He said (after Santa left)...3 things I believe in..."Santa, tooth fairy and the Easter bunny". ...we don't teach any of those things but Oh, well! I've gotten in trouble 2 times in the past about Santa...once when Julia was in KG and once when Alicia was in KG...they both were telling their classmates that Santa wasn't real (I didn't advocate them doing that!) and their teacher called me to complain, lol!!

Katie said that her teacher was asking for some symbols of Christmas and the kids were yelling out many secular things like presents, Santa, etc. and she said "Jesus!"...she said one little boy snickered at her and made fun of her...she felt bad, but I told her she should pray for him because he doesn't know Jesus.

We broke down and got least for the winter. Jesse's idea, not mine..but it only adds $20 to our phone bill. It is basic cable and we have enjoyed watching Little House on the Prairie and good movies so far.

Christmas Eve tomorrow! We're having frozen pizzas for dinner and opening one gift:)

Also, someone commented in Walmart on Anna's hair...something I get all the time, but this was different...they commented on the color RED! not how much there is, lol.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

zero degrees

That is the high for today...poor Jesse is working outside, climbing on bins, train cars, etc. The wind chill is brutal. My van is stuck in the back...but I wouldn't go anywhere even if I could. Our furnace is running constantly. I hate to see what our bill will look like this month! I always have to torture myself and look up my old Florida zip code to see what it is like there....80 degrees today!!! ARRRRGGG!

The importance of firstborns...

I ordered this from Vision Forum recently and am looking forward to listening to it. There seems to be a problem with firstborns through the generations on both sides of dh and my families, esp the males. This shows that Satan is particularly interested in firstborns. A firstborn really affects what goes on in the family and influences his siblings.

I pray for my firstborn...he seems to disrupt the household constantly and keep us in turmoil. I hope this will give me some practical biblical principles to use and maybe it will even help him to listen to it. I don't want his life to turn out like dh's dad and I see many similarities in the way he treated people and the way Colton treats people.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Snowed in!!!

The kids missed school Friday due to a snowstorm and we got another one this morning! It is beautiful! Jesse had to go to work Friday and today. I tried to take Colton out to go scoop the church's steps but we are stuck. The van refuses to go:( It is nice to stay in. I have gotten some organizing done and made oatmeal scotchies.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Baby's First Christmas...


Things have bogged down as we get closer to Christmas motivation!!! I got Colton an ACT book for him to start studying. He will have to take the test in order to attend WIT. I am trying to decide what I will do next year with Alicia, Katie and Garrett. It is a real question for me. Alicia really wants to go to Middle School. Jesse thinks public school is the best for Katie. I did really struggle with Katie when I had her home for kindergarten. I am just not sure. Garrett is going to preschool 3x a week this year. He likes it but it sure would be nice to have them home with me. I am praying that God will give me some clarity on that issue and help me make that decision. I hate to say finances play a part, but I will have to buy lots of supplies if I keep the others home and don't have the money for it, necessarily. I need to shop a used curriculum sale.

Katie and Angelina

Katie got an early Christmas present from Daddy...a nintendog which she named "Angelina". She is having fun dressing her up like a princess and soccer player.


Anna had pretty copper colored hair. This is her Elvis impression....

The eye!

All my kids have beautiful eyes....This is Alicia's eye...Julia, Alicia and Katie all have similar green/blue eyes with brown in the middle.

Christmas program

We had our Awana/church Christmas program last night. Garrett and Katie sang Silent Night (Garrett loudly) with their Cubbies and Sparks groups...Alicia sang 2 songs with her T&T group and then our family did a reading together. We read the Christmas plan of Salvation and Garrett yelled out "Merry Christmas, Everyone!!" at the end. Colton and Carlina also participated in the puppet show. Colton has a police officer puppet named Napoleon and Carlina has a construction guy puppet named Joe. They gave the story of the candy cane...along with two other puppets. It was cute.

Mom left to go see her mom in PA today. Grandma is 91 and ill. She has been in the hospital with heart troubles and is very weak. They let her go home, but noone really knows how long she has. Grandma is a wonderful lady with an amazing sense of humor. She has lived through some tough times but never let things get her down. She was married to an alcoholic husband for many years but was constantly upbeat and caring to him. She raised 3 wonderful mom being the middle child. She has a great sense of fashion and always looked very put together. She is very devoted to God and prays for all of her children and grandchildren without ceasing. I did not grow up around Grandma but saw her once a year for 2 weeks during summer vacation. The last time I saw her was in 1996 when Jesse, Mom & I (plus 3 kids at that time) took a road trip out to PA. Regardless, I always felt close to her and kept in touch through correspondence. I will miss her dreadfully when she dies, but know that death is just a door she will pass through to be with her Lord and Saviour. I will see her again one day, if not in this life then in heaven.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

The mystique of Twilight...

I saw the movie "Twilight" last was playing at a local theater ($4 a ticket) and DH and I wanted to get out of the house. We took DD (15) with us. Twilight is a big hit with teen girls (and their moms!). My sis lent me the book when she visited back in October.

After the movie I was pondering what made the story such a hit. I came up with this...within the romance, beautiful people etc. etc. there is the message that every girl craves--someone who is totally addicted/obsessed to/with them. At one point Edward says to Bella "I feel very protective of you." I was thinking how women search for this in men and how this "all-consumingness" doesn't really satisfy and so they keep searching or at least love to read about it and watch it in movies. I was thinking of the One who can fill this need and who is so frequently overlooked. He is totally in love with us, will never leave us, protects us, leads us and is just the opposite of a monster who sucks peoples blood...He is Jesus. We want to be seen as glorious and wonderful, one is who is worth dying for...guess what? Jesus did! He loved us so much and when we accept Him as our Saviour, we can bask in His glory. We are glorious in Him.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Moving in...

We spent the day yesterday at Mom's helping unload the moving truck and put things away. It is such a nice house, very open and lots of windows. Luckily the day was nice, sunny and not too windy. Anna slept alot yesterday so I was able to be of some assistance.

We took Julia and Colton to see "The Day the Earth Stood Still" last night and I got my peppermint/chocolate chip shake at yummy!!

Jesse is on his 8 days off...his sleep study went well and he will get his breathing machine, soon. Will make such a difference in his sleep and life.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Goodbye, dear friend..

I am thrilled for my dear friend Montie, who was finally accepted into the circus. I will miss her alot. She leaves tomorrow.

Well, must go and help her pack....

Christmas concert

Katie and Alicia had their school concert tonight. Katie sang in the chorus with the other K-4 graders and Alicia was in the play. It was a "Yankee Doodle Christmas" and a great success. They both did great! Jesse had to miss it due to "sleep study" overnighter at the hospital where they will monitor his sleep apnea. Julia curled Katie's hair and she looked so cute. Alicia put hers up in a match the colonial costume she is wearing. Both Julia and Katie got their hair cut today and will get Alicia and Carlina's done next week.

Another note--mom and terry arrived in Iowa today from WA! I am so excited about seeing them tomorrow and helping them unpack.

Garrett's exuberance

Garrett is the most exuberant child I've ever had. He is full speed ahead about everything. He is also the loudest child....his voice can be heard above any kind of ruckus! He turns 5 on December 29th but we celebrated his birthday with family this past weekend. Upon opening one gift he shouted "This is just what I always wanted!!!", although that particular thought had probably never crossed his mind. Tonight at the Christmas concert he raced to get inside first and we thought we had lost him for awhile. During the concert he laughed heartily at the jokes in the play. He is so fun to be around!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

2 month appointment

Anna had her 2 month shots today, how sad! She is 10lbs 4oz and 22 1/4 inches, officially 50% for both. The doctor said that if they are fussy/colicy normally, the shots will make them extra fussy. I noticed that when Colton was a baby....Anna has had colic almost as bad as Colton. If you go with the "blood type" theory of systems, then she has a more sensitive stomach (like dh) because she is type O.

I am really enjoying her, even with the colic. I love to look at her precious face and kiss her sweet little cheeks. We have nicknamed her ms. electrocution because of her hair.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Carlina's birthday...

Jesse got home about 8pm and we took off for pizza hut....alas, we got there too late and they were closed! So we headed over to the realm of Jared...Subway! We ate yummy subs and Carlina opened her gifts....a webkinz camel, 2 books, cd of classical music and nancy drew game.

Christmas party..

Jesse, Anna & I went to his company Christmas party last night. They served a delicious dinner and then we left, before the loud band and excessive drinking would begin. We had beef with a yummy sauce, salmon, roasted potatoes, wild rice, green beans, mixed veggies, rolls, salads and cheese cake for dessert. So good!!! Anna was a spectacle again just because she is so durn cute!


I finally got my haircut:) It has been about 6 months (minus trims I gave myself) since I have been in to actually have a professional cut my hair. I am really happy with it, it feels so light!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Baby, it's cold outside...

I guess it is probably the frigid weather that is triggering my "homesickness" for Florida. I am longing for the way it smells and the constant green. Last year at this time we were enjoying picking fresh citrus from the wonderful! I only lived there for 4 years, but I will always remember that time fondly. We had a plethora of negative things that we went through but they were counterbalanced by the wonderful friends we made and fun times we enjoyed.

Today is Carlina's 15th birthday and we were reminiscing about the time I took her to Disney on her bday-just me, Carlina and Garrett. We had fun, even though it rained on us. The first year we were there we had annual passes to Disney and went quite often. Carlina's favorite ride was Pirates of the Carribean.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Remembering baby....

Last year at this time my sweet little baby was delivered into the hands of the Lord......

Here is her story...
I found out in early October of 2007 that I was expecting again. Both Jesse and I were so excited. We told the kids right away and everyone rejoiced that they would soon have a new sibling. I tested positive on a Friday, but then on Sunday, after church, I started bleeding. At that point, I wished I hadn't said anything to the kids because I felt it was over. I bled for 3 days, which wasn't like a normal period, and I felt like there was a possibility that I was still pregnant. I didn't see a doctor because we didn't have insurance or the money to do so at that time. I took another HPT and it was very darkly positive, so I remained hopeful.

At about 6 wks I am usually hit pretty hard with m/s but nothing this time. That was disturbing to me. I hadn't had anymore bleeding, so I decided that I would go see a doctor after Thanksgiving. We went to Iowa for Thanksgiving and I started bleeding there, mostly spotting, nothing heavy.

When we returned to Florida, I went to the ER one night to find out for sure. They did blood tests and two ultrasounds but I wasn't told anything right away. I was there for 5 hours. Finally a doctor came and told me there was a mass in my uterus but no beating heart/no baby. I was very sad but pretty much confirmed what I already felt. I was about 11 weeks.

When I had my first m/c, I was about 13 weeks but the baby had died earlier. However, I didn't start bleeding until the doctor confirmed the baby had died. It was like a psychological thing. The same thing happened this time. As soon as the m/c was positively confirmed, I started bleeding heavily. I bled and cramped all night and was in constant pain. The bleeding continued for a few days. I never did see a doctor to follow up but just concentrated on healing.

If this little one hadn't gone to Heaven, I wouldn't have Anna Rose. She was conceived a month after I lost this little one. I am so excited that one day I will see her (I felt very strongly that I had lost a little girl and had named her Susannah). She is in heaven with my first little Anna that I lost in February 2003 and my dad. My dad loved his grandchildren so much and he is with those two little ones now.

Fudgey thoughts..

I am contemplating fudge....I am going to make plates of it to give as gifts if I can help from eating it all myself. Winter is not good for keeping pounds off, especially Christmas.

We went to Walmart yesterday for our monthly big grocery run. It was so fun to look at all the baking goodies on display....candied cherries, choc chips and all other flavors of chips, almond bark, marshmallow creme, etc. etc.

Besides the holidays...I have 2 birthdays in December. Carlina turns 15 on the 4th and Garrett turns 5 on the 29th. We are having a combined party for them next Sunday after church for family and extended family. Julia is going to make a racecar cake for Garrett. He wanted a Wall-E cake, but we couldn't find any accessories to use. I bought Carlina a bag of Dove Chocolates (her favorite) at Walmart and she is enjoying that.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Sweet toes....

I am obsessed with Anna's little toes...soooo cute!