Saturday, April 30, 2011

Baby Wearing

The more I research what's best for my children, the more I'm finding that the 'old' way of doing things is the way I like best. 100 years ago, we didn't have playpens and bouncy chairs; instead, women strapped their babies to themselves so they could continue working while caring for the child. Today, there are many who look at women who 'wear' their babies as some kind of hippy who doesn't want to conform to 'normal' motherhood. But what good reason can you give me for leaving my child while I get other things done?

When RJ was small, I had a sling to carry him in. With him snuggled close, I could wash and fold the laundry, start dinner, and write a blog - with both hands free! He loved being near me, and even slept most of the time he spent in the sling. Unfortunately, I ordered a size too big, and once I lost my pregnancy weight, it became too loose for him to sit in it comfortably. Since he was getting to be a heavier, more mobile child, I didn't bother to order a smaller one - we just adjusted our routine, and he was able to play independently while I worked.

This time, instead of a sling, I'm looking forward to wearing my child in a wrap. After some research (that I should have done before RJ), I found a simple tutorial here on how to make my own. Rather than spend upwards of $30, I can get all the fabric I need for about $10 and have a baby carrier tailored to our needs. This way, Baby can be near me at all times, and I'll still have a hand or two available to catch RJ. Plus, there are tons of YouTube videos with instructions on different ways to wear Baby depending on his age and our needs - I can even nurse him in it, which just might come in handy when the toddler doesn't want to sit still while Baby eats. I've yet to find a flaw with this plan, and as such have sewn a wrap for myself and one for my sister and her little girl. Now I just have to wait 4.5 more months to use it.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Timeline

This move is going to keep me busy for the next month! If the packing and organizing alone doesn't wear me out, the move itself (all 2 weeks of it) sure will. Here's a draft of our timeline so far:
  • (M) May 16 - Truck Delivered; Loading started; Move into Temp housing
  • (T) May 17 - Loading finished; House empty
  • (W) May 18 - Cleaners ready house for inspection
  • (R) May 19 - Final Inspection; Truck Pick-Up
  • (F) May 20 - Graduation
  • (S) May 21 - Travel from MS to TX
  • (S) May 22 - Travel from TX to KS
  • (M) May 23 - In-processing at McConnell
  • (T) May 24 - Truck delivered; unloading started
  • (W) May 25 - Unloading finished
  • (R) May 26 - Truck Pick-Up
  • (F) May 27 - Travel from KS to TX
  • (S) May 28 - Becky's Graduation
  • (S) May 29 - Travel from TX to KS
Whew! I'm tired already, and we haven't really even gotten started yet!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

PCS

We're now 23 days from our expected Graduation/PCS date, and I'm in full-fledged pack'n'move mode. My check list gets longer every time I sit down to mark things off, and I'm starting to wonder how everything will get done in time. I've made my inspection appointments, and am looking for an affordable cleaner for the house. The moving truck will be reserved tomorrow, when I have more final dates. Temporary housing arrangements need to be made. Oh, and we still need to pack. But that can wait, right? Um, no. We really need to get moving on that.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Happy 1st Birthday!

Blueberry Birthday Breakfast





Blue Boy in the Bath

Videos forthcoming, in need of editing as of yet.

More photos available in the Facebook album: click here.

Monday, April 25, 2011

20 Weeks

Momma's Belly - 20 weeks

Halfway through this pregnancy, today was our second ultrasound. Baby is big enough now that details are identifiable - including those of the gender variety. After an hour of examining all of Baby's other parts, the technician invited Husby and RJ in for the big reveal: 
we're having a baby brother!

Baby Boy - 20 weeks
(Not his best angle, but proof that there's a baby in there!)

We're all so very excited to add another little boy to our family - the men especially. I will admit that my mommy instincts told me this baby was going to be a girl, but bring on the testosterone. I have enough female emotions for this family, and boys are what I know. It looks like you won't be seeing any pink in our home anytime soon.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

RJ's First Easter

Today is the most important day. Without the Resurrection celebrated on Easter Sunday, our faith is void. Nothing else matters if this is false. 

We haven't been the most faithful church attendees since moving here to Mississippi. Our synod is not consistent in the teachings from congregation to congregation, and it has been difficult to find a church where correct theology is being preached from the pulpit. The churches down here are wrong, and there is little worshiping done in a service where most focus is on filtering out the bad. The best we've been able to find in our area is the least-wrong congregation, and although we haven't been in attendance every Sunday, we joined them this morning - the celebrating of Easter outweighs any trepidation about incorrect teachings.

My two favorite men, be-decked in ties for Easter service.

Away from family, there was no big meal with rowdy siblings - just the three (four!) of us at home together. I hummed an Easter hymn of two for most of the afternoon, and RJ enjoyed his day of celebrating. And while today is the most important, two days from now is another celebration he's pretty stoked about as well.


Friday, April 22, 2011

Good Friday

Stricken, Smitten, and Afflicted
By: Thomas Kelly

Stricken, smitten, and afflicted,
See him dying on the tree!
This is Christ, by man rejected;
Here, my soul, your Savior see.
He’s the long expected prophet,
David’s son, yet David’s Lord.
Proofs I see sufficient of it:
He’s the true and faithful Word.

Tell me, all who hear him groaning,
Was there ever grief like this?
Friends through fear his cause disowning,
Foes insulting his distress;
Many hands were raised to wound him,
None would intervene to save;
But the deepest stroke that pierced him
Was the stroke that justice gave.

You who think of sin but lightly
Nor suppose the evil great
Here may view its nature rightly,
Here its guilt may estimate.
Mark the sacrifice appointed;
See who bears the awful load;
It’s the Word, the Lord’s Anointed,
Son of Man and son of God.

Here we have a firm foundation; 
Here the refuge of the lost;
Christ, the rock of our salvation, 
His the name of which we boast.
Lamb of God, for sinners wounded,
Sacrifice to cancel guilt!
None shall ever be confounded
Who on him their hope have built.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

CLEP

My husband is a genius.

Striving for a degree in Mathematics, he's plotted a course for himself that brings him to the completion of a Bachelor's withing the next year or so. To do so, he must take a Calculus II course over the summer - but, to be able to enroll in Calculus II, one must have credit for Calculus I. Unable to fit another class into his schedule at this time, he instead taught himself calculus with the help of Khan Academy and MIT OpenCourseware, which allowed him to view class lectures online for free. In his free time (ie: when he comes home to a sleeping family but isn't quite ready for bed yet himself) he studied, and with his white board, he practiced. And practiced. And today, he went in for the Calculus CLEP test, to receive credit for all the work he's done.

He passed the Calculus CLEP, a test with only an 18% pass rate. My husband is a genius.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Naptime Crafting

There's a little boy around here who will be turning one soon, and is in need of a special birthday shirt. I found one I loved at Target, but it wasn't worth the $10 price tag when it looked simple enough to make myself. A little internet research yielded this tutorial, which - with a little tweaking - brought forth a Momma-made outfit for my birthday boy:


The "1" shirt came together so quickly and easily that I couldn't resist styling the other two onesies from the new pack. With Easter just around the corner, RJ needed a tie to wear for church, but I couldn't decided which type - so we have both a traditional necktie and a bow tie (because bow ties are cool).


Over the course of one nap time, I've managed to 'create' three new RJ shirts with time to spare. With a project this simple, you just might be seeing more of these types of shirts around here.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Ice Cream

For anyone looking for a new business venture, 
I have a recommendation: Ice Cream Delivery.

I find myself home tonight, with a sleeping child and a husband who won't be home from work for hours, and a sudden craving for ice cream. Of course, the last of our supply was finished off just yesterday - and not by me, I might add - leaving my craving unsatisfiable. With no way to go out and get it for myself [this particular craving isn't bad enough to warrant waking the sleeping babe], and no one to get it for me, I'm stuck. If only there was a delivery service I could call. I'm not sure what I would order exactly - it would depend, of course, on their selection - but I know it would be sweet and cold and delicious. But, alas, here I sit, with no delectable dessert to delight me.

But oh, wouldn't a service like this make such an amazing profit? Imagine, pregnant women everywhere, able to get their ice cream on a whim! And maybe they could offer more that just frozen treats! What if they would run and fetch for you whatever it was that your baby belly beckoned? If only ... 

Perhaps we should make that 
Pregnancy Craving Delivery.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Laundry

My old washer broke down on Thursday afternoon. After some research, we decided that the match to the new dryer would be the best choice. Friday morning, we set out to place the order, and our new washing machine was delivered today. I've never been so glad to be able to do laundry. We were able to stretch our clothing supply until today, but we wouldn't have made it much further.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Yard Work



Watching Daddy 'mow' the lawn with a weed eater is so very enthralling.


Saturday, April 16, 2011

Baby Bibs

Today's project consisted of turning some simple dish cloths 
and printed fabric into new pocket bibs for RJ (and, later, Baby). 
I took photos as I went along:


 ...but as I finished the first one, I found a much better, easier way to do it:
Two bibs into the project, RJ decided he wasn't keen on the idea of me sitting at the table sewing instead of playing with him. I've got a couple more tweaks to make, but hopefully I'll be able to get a bunch done soon.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Down Friday

When Daddy has a day off from work, this is how we spend our time - in our jammies until noon(ish), getting excited about the simple things.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Quiliting - Take II

After two days and three trips to the craft stores, Baby Girl's quilt is finally finished!



We won't be seeing her until the end of May, so it will stay nice and safe (and away from RJ's 'helping') in my linen closet until it can be hand delivered.

For my first ever quilting project, I am pleasantly pleased. There were a few bumps along the way, but over all things came out very well. Enjoy, sweet girl!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Quilting - Take I

Alas, Baby Girl's quilt was not finished last night as I had hoped. She was born into this world with an unfinished project on my hands, but I intend to complete it post haste. However, a vital piece of the materials was unpurchased when the quilt was designed, so I must venture out to find it myself. Have no fear, little girl - Auntie will have a quilt for you when first we meet!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Baby Girl

Right now, my beautiful sister is fully engaged in the delivery of her daughter. And while we wait for news of Baby Girl, I quilt. This little girl will have a blanket lovingly made by her aunt on the day of her birth - if I can only  get it finished! 

Monday, April 11, 2011

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Senior Portraits

Auntie K is here for the weekend to have her Senior portraits taken. For a sneak peek, check out Through A Mother's Lens.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Government Shut-Down

As I write this, we're mere hours away from a possible government shut-down, and from what I'm hearing, the military will not be paid until things get started back up again. So that paycheck we're expecting on the 15th? It'll be half of what it's supposed to be, since we're only going to be paid through today. And after that, we're on our own. Oh, yes, we'll be back-paid when this budget finally gets passed, but until then, this money has to last. And since the shut-down could be anywhere from a week to 6 months long, I'm stressing a little about the dangerously small amount of dollars I see when I log in to my online banking. I'm not too worried about paying the bills - we live in base housing, so our roof and utilities are no-cost, and any other debts can be stalled if needed - but buying the groceries is going to get pretty difficult when all I have left is $2. 

A shut-down might be just what we need to kick-start this country into doing the right thing, so I'm not against it in principal. But I do have to feed my husband and child(ren), which requires us to have money. At this point, we wait and pray. The Lord will provide.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Flights

This morning, we headed to the airport with Grandpa to catch our respective flights - his back to Wisconsin for another short visit, and ours home to Daddy. We grabbed a quick donut before sending him off and settling in for our flight.


Finally home, we're enjoying some quiet time with Daddy and looking forward to sleeping in our own beds for the first time in over 10 days. Whew!

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Lunch Date

As a rare treat, Grandpa was off today and able to meet with all four of his girls for lunch at Chick-fil-A. RJ tagged along, of course, and we enjoyed a lovely meal with the aunties. We'll be lonely once we finally get home!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Quilt

While we're here in Texas, we made a trip to Hobby Lobby with Auntie Anna for some quilting materials. She received a quilt top as a baby shower gift, and I offered to finish it for her - we just needed to pick up the rest of the materials. I've never actually quilted before, but this project looks to be fairly simple, so I'm hoping I can handle it. Stay tuned for updates.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Going Home

We all left Wisconsin today, but Daddy was the only one to make it home. RJ and Momma are stopping in Texas for a couple more days before we end our trip. At this point, we're not sure when we'll make it home, but we'll sure enjoy our own beds once we get there.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Rice

After attending church at Saint Matthew's with Nana and Opa, we decided to go out for Chinese. We forgot to bring food for RJ, so we ordered a side of rice for him. By the time we were done eating, there was more rice than boy in that highchair - which made for an entertaining bath tonight. Oh, toddlerhood.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Recombobulation

After the discombobulation of yesterday, we're back on track with our travel and visit plans today. Opa was gracious enough to pick us up this morning (over an hour's drive each way for him) so we could spend the weekend with him at Nana's house. Daddy flew in to a nearby airport, where Grandpa (who rode with us) was able to catch a flight home. I accompanied Grandpa into the airport to switch him out for my husband, and on our way through security we found this appropriate sign:

Post-Security at MKE
(Perhaps the TSA's idea of an April Fool's Joke?)

Ah, just what I needed - a place to recombobulate myself after the last few days (and, of course, the security check-point). With a quick trade-off, Husby and I were back on our way out to Opa and RJ, who were waiting in the car. Moments later, we arrived at Nana's house, to be greeted by the snuggles only a grandmother can give. 

Uncle Art also joined us a few hours later. Finally able to relax and enjoy our time together, we headed out for a tour of their locale and a family dinner at Cracker Barrel.

Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary
(Daddy & RJ, Momma, Opa, Uncle Art)


Out to Dinner
(Opa, Uncle Art, Daddy)

(RJ, Momma, Nana)