Thursday, April 28, 2011

Tedious Blogging

Many thanks to my brother for telling me about Windows' onscreen keyboard. It makes typing easier but still tedious. At least I don't have to copy and paste the missing letters anymore, which is great because you can't exactly copy and paste the ENTER function.

Running through my mind as of late...

  •    Knitting for babies is great because the items are small, but small needles take forever to make progress on.
  • On an entirely related note, does my niece really need TWO leg warmers?
  • I'm already nervous about my dentist appointment in two weeks. I hate dental anxiety. Sigh,
  • Timmy can roll already and I fear he'll be an early crawler, which I am NOT ready for.
  • I should upload more pictures. It'd be less typing/clicking.
  • Cadbury caramel eggs are vastly superior to the creme eggs. Vastly.
  • I'm excited to do the 31 Days to Clean challenge. I'm starting tomorrow to make up for the Sundays I'll take off.
  • I ended at least two points with prepositions but am way too tired to fix them. Does that make me a bad blogger?
  • Our town has three small thrift stores. While their clothing selection is pretty terrible, I do appreciate that their prices on non-clothing items are quite cheap.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Creating Tradition: Easter Bundles

One of the things I really looked forward to in starting a family was creating our own traditions. Be it everyday or especially traditions (as Noel Piper puts it), they have the power to create lasting memories and bring families together.

Recently Chris and I were talking about Easter and discussing whether or not we wanted to do Easter baskets for our kids. Our (quick) consensus was that while the concept is fun, they're usually full of cheap trinkets and plastic Easter grass which is pretty much like saying "yes, I'd like to pay to have my house be messy."

"Let's do books," Chris suggested, "like your parents." "Brilliant!" I replied. Several years ago, my parents started giving us a book on Easter, as well as including one in our Christmas and birthday gifts. Over the years, I've gotten several classics and other editions I've been wanting. (Although when asked about this last Christmas, I told my mother the only title I could think to ask for was The Vaccine Book. Thankfully, they got me a different one.)

So, armed with the decision to give books, I set off on my hunt. Thanks to Amazon's 4-for-3 deal, Timmy is getting two books, and because I needed just a few more dollars to make my order count for another month of AmazonMom, he's also getting a toy. Lucky kid. I added some Easter chocolate and bundled them together with hemp, along with a tag proclaiming "He is risen!" For Chris' bundle, I also included a picture frame. If I was super creative, I suppose I would have whipped up some cloth bags on my sewing machine or used colorful ribbon...but I'm not so I didn't. Also, my parents sent us books but I am too lazy to retake photos and upload them. Just imagine a space book for Chris, one by Gary Thomas for me and Curious George for Timmy.

Without further adieu, here are the H family's Easter Bundles 2011:

Friday, April 22, 2011


Our keyboard had an unfortunate run-in with Chris' beer a few days ago and some important keys such as E, I and S  no longer work...hopefully we'll be getting a new keyboard soon, though we know a new computer is in our future before too long. (I copied and pasted the missing letters so this post would be legible.) And if you'd like to donate a new computer, just let me know!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

On Co-Sleeping

It's a good thing this post has taken awhile to write because my opinion and experience keeping changing. :) Before Timothy was born, Chris wanted to have him sleep in our bed, at least at first. While I wasn't thrilled with this idea (I was afraid of rolling over him and I wanted to be able to snuggle with my husband), I agreed to at least give it a shot at some point.

During the first few weeks of newborn craziness, we initially tried Timmy in his Pack 'N Play bassinet at the foot of our bed, but he didn't like it. Same with the crib, so our bed was where he slept. It actually worked out pretty well, especially when he was waking every few hours to nurse. Frankly, walking into his room every few hours was too much in the middle of the night, and after being so incredibly pregnant, I definitely wasn't in the habit of rolling so I didn't worry about squishing him. We also have a king size bed, so we certainly didn't lack space, and I liked knowing when he was hungry because he'd start moving and making noise, but not all out crying.

That worked well for awhile, until Timothy was 5-6 weeks old and discovered hey! I can move my legs! and my arms! And I can make noise with my voice! Suddenly, he wasn't very cuddly (unless he was soundly asleep) and not so fun to share a bed with. Thankfully, we got him and his crib on speaking terms again. For awhile he'd stay in our bed after eating at 4 or 5, but I think that just confused him, so now he typically spends all night in his crib until we start our day. If we've had a short night, though, he'll sometimes lay in our bed with me in the mornings so I can doze while he talks and then we snuggle/sleep. :)

For those of you who co-sleep for more than a month (haha), I admire you, because I have no idea how you manage the flailing of baby limbs. :) Like most of mothering/parenthood, time and experience changes our opinion. So even though it wasn't what we'd envisioned from the start, it's worked for us.

Coming Across My Screen

Good links I've found lately...

Don't Skip Lent (oh so true!)

Remember Jesus (see quote at the end by Spurgeon)

Monday, April 18, 2011

Multitudes on Mondays: Gifts 81-106

81 how fast the gifts add up, when I stop to count them

82 baby socks

83 a walk with my boy on a beautiful spring day

84 dinner with a delightful family of seven from church

85 singing the Doxology as the mealtime prayer with them

86 colorful cloth diapers

87 homemade French bread

88 Amazon's 4-for-3 deal

89 coupons

90 Timmy being an absolute champ during our errands

91 journal entry #5000

92 no line at the Post Office

93 Sonic Happy Hour

94 praying for a friend in labor

95 making our Easter bundles

96 people who hold the door open for mamas lugging carseats

97 a husband who doesn't mind working on dinner when I start cooking but then have to feed Timmy

97 hearing that two babies I've prayed for have safely arrived

98 hand-me-downs

99 singing all hymns at church (a capella, because both guitarists were gone...and we sounded GOOD!)

100 walking to church

101 my red Kitchen Aid

102 Timmy actually falling asleep at church

103 productive weekends

104 Chris cleaning out my car

104 singing the Doxology to Timmy at bedtime

105 bedtime routine (especially story time)

106 consistency in the increased feedings

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

I Don't Need Sleep

This post has been written in my head for awhile, but I'm just now getting a chance to type it up.

I stumbled into Timmy's room at 3 a.m., silently pleading with God, just let him sleep! It's what we both need, Obviously, rest was the solution. As I sat down in the rocking chair with him, the thought that had been trying to work its way into the front of my brain (but I'd been shutting out) suddenly hit me with full force. I don't need sleep. I need Jesus. I'd been (wrongly) convinced that a good night's sleep would solve all my problems and exhaustion that comes with having a new baby, but my focus was misplaced.

While I rocked my baby, I confessed my idolization of sleep, realizing yet again that I can't do this whole mom thing on my own. And you know what? Since then, Timmy has been sleeping MUCH better at night and I've learned in a whole new way how to depend on Jesus.

For He gives to his beloved sleep
-Psalm 127:2

Monday, April 11, 2011

She's Got a Ticket to Ride

I've referenced the game Ticket to Ride about, oh, a million times on my blog. The lovely Fries family introduced us to it and in turn Chris and I showed the game to our families. I know some other friends of mine are big fans, so I thought I'd do a post about some variations of the game we've come up with.

Off to the Races
Deal like normal--five destination cards and four train cards (or however many you start with). Each player selects exactly three routes to complete and discards two. The game is played like normal, but ends when the first player completes all three routes. Once they're done, that's it. Another option we've started doing (and enjoy more) is leaving the trains on the board after the first round, discarding our current route cards and redealing them, using to our advantage the trains we've already played. The first player to complete all three routes wins. Typically three rounds make up a game. Instead of adding up route points (because we usually forget), the winner of each round gets a 30 point bonus. Bonus points for longest train and most routes completed still apply.

Where On Earth am I Going???
Deal six train cards and commence play with no destination cards. Play until a pre-determined amount of points (like 10 or 15) or until each person has played a certain number of trains. Once you've reached the goal, you draw destination cards like normal and proceed.

My Routes Were Predestined
(A little Reformed humor for ya.) We haven't actually played this version yet that I can recall, but I'd like to. Each player is dealt say, four or five routes and you have to complete all of them. Each person gets one more turn when one player has less than three trains, just like normal.

If you've come up with any versions of your own, we'd love to hear them!

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Missing Lent

Ash Wednesday sneaked up on me this year. So much so that I hadn't even given a thought to fasting and just that morning pulled my copy of Jesus, Keep Me Near the Cross off the shelf. (And my copy of Isaiah 53 to memorize in the shower just came out of hiding a few weeks ago)

Much to my dismay, our church here doesn't celebrate Advent or Lent, so I'm learning how to observe them with just our family and not the involvement of a church.

As the days steadily march towards Easter, I'm excited to celebrate the resurrection of Christ, but to be honest, I'm also a bit scared. I'm worried that without much of a focus on Lent, Easter won't seem as glorious. I didn't start observing Lent until college, but once I did, Easter quickly became my favorite holiday. Coincidence? I think not.

So as we soon enter Holy Week, I'm going to do my best to remember Jesus and His sufferings, amidst the dirty diapers, spitup and feedings, and focus on the events leading up to that glorious Resurrection Sunday.

Friday, April 08, 2011

Gifts 72-80

72 four generation pictures on both sides of my family

73 feeling more rested each day

74 making one of Chris' favorite meals for dinner (it's one of mine, too)

75 homemade cookies to send with my grandparents

76 snow on the day my family left from their spring break trip

77 how Timmy smiles now each time I start the little mobile in his crib

78 Chris feeling better after leaving work sick yesterday

79 beating my Dad in Scrabble on my last turn

80 Costco folding chairs from my parents (we can seat 7 now!)

Monday, April 04, 2011

Gifts 63-71

63 paying cash for our (new to us) truck

64 the lady at the automotive place telling Chris how he could save money registering at another business

65 a tidy house

66 finding baby socks around the house

67 caffeine

68 seeing my parents as grandparents

69 Timmy's great-grandma rocking him to sleep

70 knowing that Timmy has met three of his four great-grandparents on my side

71 eat/wake/sleep

72 sweater vests for newborns

73 Dedication Sunday

74 freezer meals

75 date night

76 my husband's smile

77 notes on my nightstand

78 my 85 year old Grandpa joining Facebook

79 Moby wraps

80 hymns

81 four hours of sleep in a row

Friday, April 01, 2011

Love Me, Love My House

One night last week, we had a co-worker of Chris' over for dinner. We didn't have anything fancy (just taco salad) and the house wasn't picked up to perfection. At one time, that would have bugged me, but I've changed my thinking about hospitality a bit.

I don't think that hospitality is inviting people over for meals only when your house is perfect and you have a gourmet meal ready. I know that some of the most meaningful hospitality I've experienced is with friends who invited me (or us) over for a meal on the fly and just let us be a part of their lives. What I remember are the conversations and laughter that took place over lovingly prepared meals, and not if the house was perfectly clean. Are there times when it's fun to plan big dinners and do nice meals? Sure, but we can't just limit our hospitality to those times.

What is hospitality? Inviting friends and strangers to be in your life, sharing meals and a place to sleep. (That's my definition, mostly because I'm too tired to get my copy of The Hospitality Commands off the bookshelf.  Good book, though.) As I enter my mothering years, I realized I couldn't let the state of my house be an excuse to not inviting people over. Plus, why not let people see us as we really are--messy house and all.

I'm not advocating being lazy or letting your housekeeping skills slide. I am trying to get better about maintaining a neat house, but if I wait until it's perfect--let's face it--I'll never invite people over. And you know what? I'd rather invite someone over for a meal I was already planning to make, even if it's just brinner, because it's letting them get to know us for who we are.