Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Farewell, 2013

Look at me, blogging on the last day of the year!  This is my 79th post of the year.  Obviously not spectacular.  Not nearly as good as last year, but on par with 2010 and 2011.  I can't promise 2014 will be a better blogging year, but I will do my best!

It's been a few years since I've come up with New Years resolutions.  Everyone knows those never work anyway.  After getting the idea from a friend, Chet and I made New Years goals in 2011 and 2012.  They were very specific, and every couple of months we would go over them.  It worked beautifully!  Last year, just before ringing in 2013, Chet and I talked about some goals, but were not too specific in writing them down.  However, we did something we hadn't done before, which was come up with a single word that we hoped to focus on all year: deliberate.  Well...let me tell you that our deliberateness didn't last long, because 2013 was full of unexpected twists and turns.

January: Nothing too spectacular happened this month, but it's always full of fun since Chet, Sydney, and I (and soon Baby Boy) all have January birthdays.
February: My sweet P-ma passed away February 26th, but most of February was focused on her waning health.  Thankfully P-ma did not suffer long; she would have hated that, and so would the rest of us.  She is happy in heaven with my Pop.
March: P-ma's funeral was held in early March, which meant a trip to West Texas for us.
April: My dad's mom, Granny Burrous, passed away April 4th.  Her passing was a little more expected than P-ma's, and I am thankful she is also in heaven.  Her early April funeral meant another trip to (East) Texas.
May: Chet left for his field exercise (a several-week long event that prepares the Battalion for deployment); my dad came to visit and accompanied the girls and me to Annapolis, MD for a super fun wedding; I discovered I was expecting Baby #3.

Let me pause here and say this is probably the point where the word "deliberate" flew out the window for me.  2013's word morphed from "deliberate" to "survive."

June: Deployment preparations were in full swing this month; we traveled to TX late in the month for a little pre-deployment vacation.
July: Our TX vacation took up the first few days of July, and then it was back to MS for final deployment preparations.
August: Chet left for deployment August 2nd ("survive" kicks into full gear); Sydney started preschool, which was a fantastic distraction from the early days of deployment.  We also found out Baby Boy was...well, a baby boy!
September: The girls and I drove to Orlando for our niece's birthday party; the girls and I drove to TX less than a week after the Orlando trip, from which Sydney and I flew to Baltimore for another Maryland wedding.  This month I mistook the word "survive" for "overdrive"; I backpedaled considerably after the September traveling and have refused to venture from Mississippi since.
October: Halloween seemed to be in full swing come October 1st -- nuff said.
November: Thanksgiving, nuff said.
December: Christmas, nuff said.

(How annoying is it that I typed "nuff" three times?)

And here we are.  I am not sorry to say goodbye to you, 2013.  You were full of blessings, but I'm ready to put you behind me and move on to 2014, a year of much change for our family.  I'm ready to welcome Chet home, ready to welcome our Baby Boy into the world, ready to move to Washington D.C., and...  Well, let's just start with that.  We'll see what the rest of the year brings.  And, by the way, I do not plan on making New Years goals or coming up with a word for the year...for now I'll hang on to "survive" and perhaps reevaluate come Easter.  Or Mother's Day.  Or Halloween.

Happy New Year!

Friday, December 20, 2013

Professional Photography

No, I'm not yet sharing those professional pictures we had made in October.  That is too much work for this week!  But I am sharing some pictures Sydney has taken with my iPhone.  I taught her how to use the phone's camera a few days ago, and she is obsessed.  (Except, I have to only let her use it when Lorelei is napping, because otherwise they fight over it.  Have I ever mentioned how much I dislike being their referee?)

I had to delete hundreds of photos that she took (she photographs speedily, as if she is capturing an Olympic 100-m dash), but I thought these turned out quite good/were hilarious:
Decorations on our buffet

More buffet decorations

The edge protector on our kitchen table

Pooh and Piglet, sitting on a shelf of her play kitchen (she arranged them like that before she took the picture)

Steam mop

Stool

Close up/different view of stool

A sweatshirt and scarf hanging from the coat rack
Can you say fancy?!  Good work, Syd!

Thursday, December 19, 2013

More about the name...

I forgot to mention this in Tuesday's post about Baby Boy's name.  Even though we kept Sydney's name to ourselves until she was born, we did cheat a few times.  If someone I barely knew asked what we were naming her, I went ahead and told them, knowing that they wouldn't share it with anyone we knew.  I even bent the rule more than that and told two of my girlfriends at work what her name was going to be.  But with this baby, we haven't breathed a word to anyone.  Not even Sydney, because if she knows, the world will know.  Several weeks ago she even asked, point blank, "What's Baby Brother's name again?"  I told her we'd have to wait to find out until he was born.  She seemed satisfied by that answer.  And whenever the cashier at Walmart asks me what we're naming him, I just tell her we haven't decided yet.

Just in case you are desperately trying to guess the name we've chosen, here is a link to a list of top 100 names for boys.  It's from the website Nameberry (the snobbiest, most awesome baby name website in the world).  You can read it all when you click on the link below, but this particular list of top 100 boy names is based on the names searched on this particular website since the beginning of 2013 (it has nothing to do with the Social Security Administration's name list).  And the name we chose is not on this list.  Muahahahaha!

http://nameberry.com/blog/top-100-boy-names-of-2013?utm_source=Fresh+Delivery&utm_campaign=6765eb09c4-FRESH_DELIVERY&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_b8afa44ec2-6765eb09c4-174074462

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Baby Boy's Name

Don't get excited, because I'm not going to reveal what we're naming Baby Boy.  I'm just telling you we're not revealing his name before he's born (insert evil laugh here).

A couple of my friends act like this little secret is going to put them in therapy.

Anyway, you may remember that we did not reveal Sydney's name before she was born, but we did share Lorelei's name.  The reason we decided to keep the name a secret again is because Chet is gone, and it is nice for us to know something that no one else knows yet since Chet likely will not be here to share in Baby Boy's birth.

Anyway, like I said yesterday, Baby Boy is not getting his own room at this house, therefore, I was not planning on painting any name letters for him like I did for Sydney and Lorelei.  But then after shifting around some furniture in the master bedroom to accommodate for baby gear, I was left with a giant white wall.  So I decided to go ahead and do some letters.  However, I am taking the easy way out this time around and simply using Mod Podge to affix scrapbook paper (actually, it's wrapping paper) to the front of the letters, rather than hand-painting them.  Ain't no one got time for that.

Speaking of Chet still being deployed when Baby Boy is born, there is a remote possibility that he will make it home in time for the birth!  As long as everything goes well on Chet's end and as long as Baby Boy doesn't decide to make an early appearance.  Sydney was born at 39 weeks, and Lorelei was born at 39 weeks, 2 days.  We want this one to keep cooking as long as possible (well, not too long) so that his daddy can be here when he makes an appearance in this world.  So pray for that.

That's all for this morning -- I need to finish mopping the floor before the girls wake up.  Happy Tuesday!

Monday, December 16, 2013

Washington D.C. and Stuff

The "and Stuff" part of this blog entry heading gives me creative license to write about whatever the heck I want and in a completely disorganized manner.  Buckle up!

Last night, while watching the tenth-to-last episode in the 85-episode "Ugly Betty" TV series, I decided that I would blog this morning.  I didn't have it in me last night as I lounged on the couch, wasting precious sleep by watching TV, then starting mindlessly at my phone for at least half an hour before hitting the hay, but I knew I'd have it in me come morning.  I even decided, during one of my two allotted "snooze" sessions (does anyone really get up the first time their alarm goes off?) that I would blog every morning for one straight week.  Not every day, but every morning.  Because even though mornings are usually the height of my productivity, lately I've only been using my mornings to read.  There's nothing wrong with that, of course, but for the last few weeks I've had the energy to be productive throughout most of the day, and even sometimes in the evenings, so I haven't felt the same pressure to Hurry and Get Things Done as soon as my feet hit the floor.  (I blame it on nesting, and I'll write more about that in a moment.)

Speaking of books, I'm afraid my reading frenzy is slowing down, and will come to a screeching halt as soon as Baby Boy arrives.  I started the book War and Remembrance the other day, but I'm not sure that's the best book for me to tackle right now, what with the never-ending to-do list, Christmas in 9 days, the baby due in less than a month, and Chet's homecoming.  I need to shelve it for now, and accept the fact that that reading is going to have to take a back seat for a while.  Probably until Mother's Day.

I'm going to tell you about Washington D.C. before I totally lose you.

Remember in this post when I casually mentioned we were moving to Washington D.C. after the first of the year?  Yeah, that's still happening.  The original plan was for Chet to finish this deployment, for us to move to Austin, TX in May/June for Chet to start the summer semester in pursuit of his master's degree, and to have Baby #3 in a birthing center in Austin, far away from a military hospital (I can hear God laughing right now, can you?).  Obviously, none of that is happening, other than the fact that Baby #3 is on his way.  That's okay though, because, really, what do I know about making plans? 

Anyway, before Chet deployed, he was approached by his XO (Executive Officer) about a possible job that needed to be filled in D.C.  We politely declined the generous offer (ha!), but it kept coming up.  Chet and I talked it over, and knew/decided that it wouldn't be the worst thing on earth for us to take a detour to D.C. before him going to grad school, but we weren't going to volunteer.  It seemed as if the issue was laid to rest, until a few weeks into his deployment, when he got a phone call saying he was picked for the job.  The next day we had written orders to D.C.  (For those of you who are familiar with military orders, you know that this almost never happens.  Usually you are begging for your written orders so that you can officially begin planning your next move, but a lack of government funds almost always prevents you from receiving your orders until the last minute.  Unless, of course, you're in a situation where you're "volun-TOLD" to go to Washington D.C. rather than grad school.)

So, we're moving to D.C.  Where are we going to live?  Your guess is as good as mine!  Even though Chet and I lived near D.C. for four years apiece, neither of us knows anything about living in the area, especially not with kids.  Because of this ignorance, I was really stressed about the move for several weeks, but I am better now.  I've exhausted the amount of Internet research I can possibly do about living in the area, and Chet and I have settled on a list of priorities that will help steer us toward a good home for us at this stage in our lives.  And I hired a realtor.

Our main priority is for Chet to have the shortest possible commute to work.  Traffic in the D.C./northern Virginia area is horrendous, so even if you live only 10 miles from the office, you'll be commuting 45 minutes to an hour (or more) each way, every day.  And with three small kids at home, that's not something either of us can deal with right now.  That being said, we have to balance a short-as-possible commute with a home that is not in a high-crime area and that is assigned to a decent (not spectacular) school for Sydney to attend (she'll start Kindergarten in the fall of '15).  Those priorities sound simple, but it took us weeks and weeks to nail them down, and it helps to sort of have a mission statement in working with a realtor whose expertise I fully trust to help steer us in the right direction.

Here is our timeline:
1. Have baby/Chet returns from deployment (we're not sure of the order in which these two events will happen)
2. Chet, Ashley, and Baby travel to D.C.-area within the first two weeks of February to look at houses realtor has found and to sign a lease (girls will stay in MS with grandma)
3. Finalize moving details and actually pack up house to move (the moving company will pack up the house, but it's never as easy as it sounds)
4. Move to D.C. end of February/beginning of March (exact dates are a moving target at this point)

Fun, right?!

So that's all I know about D.C. at this point.  I'll keep you posted.

I mentioned nesting earlier.  Since Baby Boy is not getting his own room at this house (he'll sleep in the bassinet in our bedroom until we move, and because I want to keep a guest bedroom open for guests to come stay with us and help us survive these next few months), my nesting instincts have been focused on other projects.  Christmas and moving are two areas in which I feel like I've been able to stay more organized than I normally might have had my mothering hormones not been in overdrive.  I've also tackled some of those wishful thinking to-do list items.  You know, the ones where you're laughing a little to yourself as you write them down, knowing that realistically you'll get to those items when you retire at the age of 65...if then.  Anyway, it's been great crossing some of those things off my list, but I don't feel "done" yet.  My problem is that I keep starting new projects, and I need to finish some up before starting new ones.  Another reason I should not read "War and Remembrance" right now.

I hope I didn't bore anyone to tears.  Here are some pictures of the girls:
Reindeer Shirts

Christmas Garb

We went to see the movie "Frozen" with my friend/neighbor Sara

Syd's footed pajamas -- she wants to wear these all day every day

Listening to Daddy's voice read "'Twas the Night Before Christmas"

Christmas PJs

More Christmas Garb

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

30-34 Weeks

My dad said he liked it when I posted several belly shots in one blog post, because it's easier to see the progression.  I took that as, "Ashley, there's no need to blog every week!"

Here are my belly photos, with a few "outtakes", from the last five weeks:
30 Weeks (we see you Sydney!)

Goofballs

31 Weeks
 
32 Weeks

33 Weeks

Syd's snazzy new outfit (like me, she loves the word snazzy...she also calls the poofy things on her shoulders "angel wings" and the bow on the front of her shirt "a dog bone")
 
34 Weeks (I feel like I look gigantic here...I blame the too-short shirt)

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Sydney

I'm not even going to mention how long it's been since my last post (18 days...oops).

Anyway, I was at the computer, taking the time to update the reading list and the Christmas background on my blog (you're welcome), and Sydney asked me to help her do a puzzle (a fairly complicated 50-ish piece Cinderella puzzle where all the pieces are either navy blue, midnight blue, or royal blue).  After informing me that Cinderella loves sparkles, she said, "Whew, this puzzle hurts our tummies."  "It does?" I asked.  "Yes.  That's why you've got a big belly, girl."  Huh?

Sydney, Sydney, Sydney...where do you and all of the preschoolers of the world come up with this stuff?

Friday, November 15, 2013

21 graces

I think it is high time for another Sydney edition of the "21 graces" series.  My poor, sweet daughter has been testing the limits lately; probably because I haven't blogged about her in a while.

1. Showing me a stuffed cat and dog: "This is my cat Liley and my dog Crinkle."  Two minutes later: "What are my cat's and dog's name again?"
2. "When I am 16, I can have coffee also." (Does that mean she thinks I'm 16?!)
3. "Are we on Pass Road?"  (Pass Road is one of the roads that leads to the Navy gate.  I'm not sure I've ever talked to her about that particular road, but she really likes it.)
4. Me, as I'm fixing her hair in the mirror: "Sydney, what color is your hair?"
Syd: "A little bit white and a little bit brown." 
5. Sometimes when she's in an agreeable mood she shouts, "Yes, ma'am!" as if she's in boot camp.  Sometimes I request she say, "Aye aye!", but not very often.
6. Sydney describing when to use and demonstrating the "stop, drop, and roll" method.  Thank you, Preschool.
7. When asked where we are moving: "Washington D.C.!"
8. While talking to Chet on the phone: "Daddy, you have to wear clothes when we move -- not work clothes, regular clothes."  (I think she meant she didn't think he should wear his uniform.)
9. While listening to Fox News in the car: *GASP* "Mommy, they said Washington D.C.!"
10. "Lorelei's grandma is Didi and my grandma is Grammy."  (This was not long after Syd and I flew to Baltimore for a wedding; Lorelei stayed with Didi in TX.)
11. Me: "Sydney, what did you do at school today?"
Syd, after a tired pause: "Stickers.  Gummy Bears.  Trees.  Snowflakes."  (Um, o-kay...)
12. Just as she was laying down for bed: "My flower pillow smells like chocolate...like a sheep."
13. I spilled some milk on the floor and she said, "Don't worry, Mommy, we can clean it up.  I'll get a napkin."
14. "Baby hug!" as she hugs my belly.  (I didn't invent this, she did.)
15. "That baby is so cute!" about pretty much any baby she sees.
16. "That would be so cute for my baby brother!" about pretty much any baby item she sees.
17. Unprompted, and for who knows what (the possibilities are endless): "I'm sorry, Lor." *Hugs her sister.*
18. "Watch me twirl, because I'm good at that now!"
19. "Did you see me bow?  I'm like a ballerina!"
20. "Oooooh!  Look at that!" about absolutely everything she laid eyes on at Hobby Lobby.
21. "Thank you for taking me to the CDC!"  (No, thank you, Sydney.)
She removed all of the black olives from the bowl and put them on her plate.  Thank goodness she didn't eat them all.

Acting like our neighbor's dog.

Proving she is in style at Victoria's Secret.

Plopped down like a vagabond in front of the library.

Saturday, November 2, 2013

26-29 Weeks

Today I am 30 weeks along in this pregnancy, but I've neglected to post the last four weeks of belly pictures (my neighbor Colleen always takes my picture on Sunday, so tomorrow she will take my 30-week picture).  Here they are:
26 Weeks

27 Weeks

28 Weeks

29 Weeks
I look ginormous in that 28-week picture, but I blame the shirt.  Even though the truth is I can barely bend over anymore.

I really have nothing to report on the pregnancy front.  I had my 28-week appointment two weeks ago, and everything was fine (no gestational diabetes -- hooray!).  I still plan on posting about the day we had the gender-reveal ultrasound, and about Baby Boy's name, but I'll save those posts for another day when I'm sure I won't have any more brain power than I do right this moment (ah, procrastination).

In other news, I had a glimpse of my possible future the other morning.  It was Friday, October 25th, when Sydney was supposed to dress western for her fall carnival at school.  She doesn't have many western outfits; in fact, only one shirt.  This shirt:

It's a t-shirt with Willie Nelson's face on it, and says, "Have a Willie Nice Day."  I mean, how cute is that?!  But Sydney can't stand t-shirts.  I usually choose her school clothes the night before, and I knew I should have mentally prepared her for the t-shirt, but I decided to wing it (wrong choice).  I wanted her to wear the t-shirt, jeans, a belt, different boots than these, and a red bow, but I knew I would need to do a lot of compromising in order to get her into the t-shirt.  The compromises were the skirt, pink tights, and Uggs (she didn't care about the bow, but once she chose the pink tights I decided against the red bow).  But before we reached this compromise there were lots of tears on Sydney's part, and near-tears on my part, and this ridiculous argument with a 3-year old over fashion preferences was the glimpse of my possible future.  I hope not though.

Here's the only other picture I got at Sydney's fall carnival (I dropped Lorelei off with the babysitter and accompanied Sydney to school so that I could volunteer at the event):
This is Sydney's tired, cranky, hungry class, right after all of the festivities ended and right before lunch.

I hope everyone's having a great weekend!

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Nothing Specific

Why am I such a bad blogger lately?  It's not like I've been lazy -- I keep busy and am productive much of the time.  I just haven't carved out time to blog lately.  That might be okay, except I feel guilty about it, and I'm constantly writing blog posts in my head.  Therefore, I shall blog.

Today is Thursday, which means I am extra tired.  And because it's Thursday, the girls are in bed a little earlier than usual, and I am eating a bowl of Crispix for dinner.  I'm having a light dinner because I had a late lunch: Rotel dip and chips.  Perhaps I should write a what-to-eat-when-you're-pregnant book.  No?

I really don't have much to say, although there is a long list of blog posts I should write in order to catch you up on our lives.  Things like Lorelei's 2nd birthday (heck, Lorelei's birth story!), the ultrasound where we found out baby's boy's gender, visits from family, etc.  But I'll save those for another day (ha!).

I'm sure many of you saw the family pictures I posted on Facebook recently.  There are many more, and I'm really happy with how they turned out.  I'll post all (or at least most, since there are a couple I'm not crazy about) soon, but here are three good ones (that I didn't post on Facebook):



Here is Sydney's school picture:

And the girls in more Halloween garb:


Speaking of Halloween, October is drawing to a close, which means I am quickly burning out on all things Halloween.  (Click HERE to read my Halloween rant from last year.)  There are way too many "fun" things scheduled in the next few days that I feel like we have to participate in, and I'm ready for all of it to be done.  Too much fun makes me cranky.

I hope everyone had a great Thursday!

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

When hubby's away...

...this is how fix-it projects are engineered:

I used wood glue to glue the red top back on the toy milk bottle, and to fix the picture frame.  I've never used wood glue before, and I expected it to be the same consistency as hot glue.  It's not.  It's more like water, so don't squeeze the bottle with all your might.

Since wood glue is not like hot glue (or super glue, for that matter), the parts I glued together did not automatically stick.  Hence the spice bottles helping weigh down the objects, and the chip clip instead of a clamp.  Who says English majors can't be engineers too?!

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Thursdays

For a while now I've been meaning to post about our new routines.  Our daily schedule (during the week) now has a lot of structure and has changed a lot since Chet left for deployment and Sydney started preschool.  It's been amazing, and somehow (before our new routine started) I had lost sight of how well we do when we have structure (especially Sydney and me).  No wonder I felt like I was going crazy all the time!

So today I'll give you insight into our Thursdays, since that's what today is.  And, actually, Thursday is my least favorite day, because it lacks good structure.

This particular Thursday, and every other Thursday (so twice a month), the girls and I attend MOPS meetings.  We all love them, and they are good for my soul.  I attended a MOPS group the year Lorelei was born, but didn't last year, and I'm really glad to be involved again.  Anyway, the meetings start at 9:15 a.m., so we leave the house a little after 8:30 a.m. to make sure we're there in plenty of time.  We usually end around 11:15 a.m., and Lorelei falls asleep in the car once we're on the road (11:15 is close to her usual nap time).  Any other day of the week, if she starts to fall asleep in the car, I do everything in my power to keep her awake, like singing really loudly or grabbing at her feet behind me or throwing stuffed animals at her head, but on Thursdays, the car is where she naps.

We drive home, and Sydney and I sneak out of the car (I leave the car running -- I'm not interested in being featured on the five o'clock news) and into the house.  I feed her a snack/lunch, she changes into her dance clothes, and we sneak back into the car, even though Lorelei usually wakes up as soon as we open the doors to get back in.  Syd's ballet/tap class starts at 1:00 p.m., and Lorelei and I just hang out in the waiting room at the studio (or outside if it's not too blasted hot, which it usually is) while Syd dances for 45 minutes.  I pack a snack/lunch for Lorelei, and we usually eat that while we wait.

When it's time to leave dance, Lor is feeling pretty refreshed, having recently napped and been fed, but Sydney and I are in horrendous moods a little on the tired side.  Every other day of the week (and weekend) Sydney naps from 1:00 p.m. until 2:00 p.m., so you can imagine why she's so cranky come 1:45 p.m.  And every other day of the week while the girls nap, I put my feet up for at least 30 minutes, not only to rest, but to relieve my aching, varicose-vein-ridden pregnancy legs.  Those 30 minutes make all the difference in the world, and I'm a little miffed at Thursdays for not allowing me that time to myself.

On MOPS Thursdays we usually drive straight home after dance, since we've been out of the house mostly all day.  That's what we did today, and here's how the rest of our day went down:

2:05 p.m. - 3:15 p.m.: I turned on an episode of "Daniel Tiger" for the girls to watch, but they were more interested in making a mess playing, so I turned the TV off and tried to sneak in some rest time for myself in the big easy chair.  The girls like to make sure I don't get too comfortable, but it was still nice to sit.

3:15 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.: I'm desperately tired by this point, and Lorelei is rubbing her eyes, so I decide to put her in her crib and lay on the couch to elevate my feet.  I give the iPad to Sydney, and she kills brain cells stays quiet for the next 45 minutes. 

4:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.: I'm feeling much better, and Sydney and I head upstairs to save Lorelei from her crib (she never fell asleep, but was still happy to lay up there, chewing on her burp rag and playing with the nine or ten stuffed animals leaving her no room to lay down surrounding her).  For an hour I put different outfits on the girls, trying to figure out what they're going to wear for our family pictures on Saturday.  I realize that Lorelei looks disheveled in whatever I put her in, no matter how cute the outfit.  She really is cursed with some sort of 19-year-old-surfer-boy syndrome, as far as appearances.

5:00 p.m. - 6:15 p.m.: I decide there's no point in making Thursday worse by cooking dinner and having to clean the kitchen, so the girls and I head to Subway.  I love making messes for other people to clean up -- not on purpose, of course.

6:15 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.: We head to our friend/neighbor Kelly's house for a change of scenery; we haven't seen her or her little boy almost all week (she's usually the person I see the most during the week).  Lorelei had been feeling under the weather with a cold until today, so we steered clear of other people as much as possible.

Just as we were leaving Kelly's house, Sydney decided to lay down on her front door step, right on the welcome mat.  I whisper-hollered for her to get up, because I did not want to bathe her tonight -- no matter that she has school pictures tomorrow.  She didn't seem too dirty, and she smelled fine, so I let the welcome mat incident slide.  I treated it like the 5-second rule, where you're still allowed to eat something off the floor as long as it's on the floor less than five seconds (a strict rule in our house...not).

When we got home we all chipped in to clean up the play mess that we left before heading to Subway.  I doled out vitamins, milk cups, and water cups, and we trooped upstairs for pajamas (not baths though).  I did take the time to wipe their feet with baby wipes though.  We read a couple of books, and despite pleas to "watch a movie" from Sydney, I said goodnight.  They were asleep within 15 minutes, which is always the case on Thursdays.  Woo hoo for me!

***On non-MOPS Thursdays we usually stay at home all morning until it's time to leave for dance.  I put Lorelei down for a nap around 10:30 a.m., and she sleeps until it's time for us to leave the house.  During that time Sydney helps me get chores done, or just plays.  Non-MOPS Thursdays are a little less hectic, but still tiring for Sydney and me since neither one of us gets the rest we are accustomed to.***

Sorry if that bored you to tears!  Happy Thursday!

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Happy October and 2 Months Down!

Happy October, everyone!  I love this month, and I am super happy I have a daughter born right smack in the middle of it (rather than another January birthday; we have already succeeded in saturating the month of January with birthdays).

October in this house means eating lots of candy corn and wearing Halloween garb all month long (as soon as I wash it, they're wearing it again -- gotta get your money's worth!).


These pictures were taken yesterday; they're both wearing orange again today.  Bring on the cold weather so I can put them in their long-sleeved Halloween garb!

Also, today marks two months since Chet left for deployment -- woo hoo!  Here is the progress we have made on the M&M jar:
August
 
October
Are you thinking that it's impossible to tell from these pictures if there is actually less candy in the jar?  Yes, I agree.  But I know there is less, since the girls have eaten 124 M&Ms between them.  Yikes.

Monday, September 30, 2013

25 Weeks

25 weeks along!
In my opinion I'm not looking all that different from week to week yet.  Although I can attest that it is getting noticeably harder to bend over and pick up things from the floor.

I had my 24-week OB appointment Tuesday, September 24th.  It was uneventful, which is always a good thing at OB appointments.  Next month I will take the glucose test (I failed the 1-hour test when I was pregnant with Sydney, so I'm always a little wary of this test).  No other pregnancy news!

Sydney and Lorelei wore cute outfits to church yesterday, but I can't prove it because I didn't get a good full-length-ish picture of either of them.  Lorelei was a crab when she woke up yesterday, but then perked up a little right before we left for church:


Sydney was immediately in a good mood when she discovered she was wearing "down sleeves" to church:
 
I know it's hard to tell in the pictures, so I'll tell you that both girls are wearing dresses, sort of.  Lorelei's top is not technically considered a dress, but her legs are so short she can wear it as a dress for now.  She has ruffled pants in the same polka-dotted pattern as Sydney's dress that go with the solid orange top.  Sydney's is a dress, and she has brown leggings to go with hers.  Neither of them wore their pants yesterday though, because it was too hot by the time we left church to even wear the long-sleeved dresses.  Oh, well, it was fun while it lasted.
 
Happy Monday!

Sunday, September 29, 2013

21 graces

I've not been good at keeping up with the "21 graces" posts, and this post is a combination of this past week, and a post that I started that should have been posted four weeks ago (time is flying!).  I could have just erased the old post and started over, but the things I had already listed were too good to let go.

1. Meeting a friend's newborn daughter
2. An event hosted by a member of our spouse's club that she called "Taste of Asia"...oh, my word, she should open her own restaurant!
3. The best childcare provider (not a babysitter, since she's a grown woman) on the planet, living just one street over
4. A morning at the coffee shop with a neighbor/friend (who tolerates my wild children well), despite the pouring rain
5. Not going crazy in the house on a Saturday, again despite the pouring rain
6. Popeye's chicken
7. Going back to church after two weeks away (due to travels)
8. Pruning our front bushes without keeling over due to the heat
9. The girls acting very concerned and taking care of me after I banged my elbow on a rocking chair (perhaps in the future in the midst of their chaos I will pretend to be injured in order to get them to focus on something besides their squabble of the moment)
10. Finding out we're expecting a healthy baby boy!

11. Buying myself a new, and very snazzy, BLUE diaper bag (to be used when Baby Boy arrives; for the next three months I am relishing the ability to carry a large purse, instead of a diaper bag)
12. Stocking up on Bath and Body Works' fall scents
13. An uneventful (read: good) 24-week OB appointment
14. Target's Cartwheel app
15. Candy corn
16. Attending a (free!) base-sponsored self-care workshop, which ended with chair massages by local masseuse-school students (not sure if "masseuse-school student" is the correct term though...)
17. Spontaneously sorting through top-of-the-closet boxes
18. A phone call with my brother on his birthday
19. My first meeting with a new MOPS group
20. Sydney playing at a new neighbor's house
21. Dairy Queen ice cream cones