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Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Quotable Conversations

We've heard some pretty funny stuff around our house lately. Unfortunately, it seems that I usually play the role of straight man. Here are some examples:

The girls and I spent the day at Fair Oaks Farms and got to see a baby cow being born. I viewed this as a somewhat traumatic experience, as the baby cow got stuck and needed to be pulled out. Bryn, however, apparently found it humorous.
Bryn (to her teacher): I saw a mommy have her baby!
Teacher: Really?
Me: She means a cow. We went to the farm yesterday.
Bryn: And the baby got stuck!!
Teacher: Oh my!
Bryn (laughing): Her feet were sticking out of her mommy's bottom!!

*****

Shay's new favorite expression (repeated at least every 10 minutes): "Oh man!"

*****

While watching "Glee" online with me, Ben had a somewhat bemused, somewhat disgusted look on his face.
Me: You know, you don't have to watch this if you think it's so dumb.
Ben: No, it's fine. I recognize the show for what it is.
Me: And what would that be, exactly?
Ben: Made for you.

*****

After being asked to put on her shoes:
Bryn: You are making me crazy, Mom!

Yes, honey, and the feeling is mutual. :)

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Catching Up: A Few More Things

As the end of tonight's turbo blogging, a few odds and ends that didn't fit in anywhere else....


Everybody loves the circus!

Our family after the circus
(while I'm short, I'm not THAT short--Ben is standing a step above me)

Bryn and Shay with their friends Emily and Chris during a multi-family outing to Chick Fil-A

Bejeweled Shay

And this is what happens with 3-year-olds are allowed to dress themselves...

Catching Up: Fall Festival

We attended Fall Fest in Zionsville last weekend to celebrate the end of my job and my return to stay-at-home motherhood. The girls had a fantastic time!!

Bryn with her new fireman's helmet and Nemo face (er, arm) painting

Baby's first tattoo

Choo choo!


Harley girls


Enjoying the petting zoo

Catching Up: Bryn's First Day of School

This is Bryn's second year at St. Andrew's Nursery School. She absolutely adores it and couldn't wait to get back this fall! We think the school is a huge godsend, as it has transformed her from the shy, clingy little girl of last fall to the chatterbox of the present day. I was pretty bummed this year because I wasn't able to attend her first day, since subs don't really get days off. But Ben had a great time taking her and getting to be part of the whole experience.

Ready to go
These are the only tears that Bryn shed on the first day. Why was she crying? Because they got to school too early and Daddy suggested going to get a doughnut instead of waiting in the parking lot. All Bryn wanted to do was go to her school!!

Enjoying the classroom toys next to her friend Chris


Pretending to call Mommy to tell me what a great day she was having!


Bryn and Chris with their incredibly fantastic teachers

Catching Up: Weekend at Camp Tecumseh

During the first weekend in September, our family headed up to Brookston to celebrate Camp Tecumseh's 85th year. This was a fantastic chance to get caught up on old friends from our camp days (5 years as a camper and 5 years as a counselor for me, and I even dragged Ben along for one summer as a counselor) and show our girls the place that we love so much. They quickly fell in love with it too and had a truly fantastic weekend. We all spent the day trying out various camp activities, such as the Black Hole slide, the Three House Treehouse playground, paddleboats on the lake, the new frisbee golf course (that one was just Ben), a trail ride for Bryn, new games, a picnic dinner, and a campfire full of favorite songs and skits. Ben and Shay headed home after the campfire, and Bryn and I spent the night at camp. In the morning, we had breakfast in the dining hall, went to outdoor chapel, and even fit in another trail ride before heading home. What a fantastic weekend!

Ben and the girls at the top of the Black Hole slide

Equestrian Bryn, ready for her first horse ride


Bryn petting her horse of choice--she had to have a white one!


Is she really big enough for this?!?! Bryn on "her" horse, Minnie.


Bryn with the chickens at the mini-farm--she couldn't get enough of this place!

Catching Up: Bryn's Dance Class

Here's the first of several photo posts tonight, my attempt to get caught up on sharing the cuteness of the past few weeks. Bryn has recently started dance classes at a local studio. The classes are a half hour a week and feature a combination of intro to ballet, tap, and tumbling. Bryn absolutely loves them!


With her friend Ella before class
Model student--can't wait to learn ballet!
Showing off her dance outfit at home


Dancing across the room


Trying out a backbend for the first time

Ups and Downs

It has been an odd sort of week. I have absolutely loved being home with the girls, getting to spend time with them and be part of their daily routines. I love getting back to my "real" life, starting back into activities that I have really missed over the last year. Here's a quick run-down of what my first week "off" entailed:

Friday night - We went to the Zionsville Fall Festival, which is basically a carnival. The kids had a fantastic time eating snowcones, playing overpriced games for cheap prizes, and riding every kiddie ride there. Based on the absolute glee on her face while riding, I think our Shay is going to grow up to be a thrill-seeker!

Saturday - Grammy Tina (my mom) visited, and she went to the circus with us. Ringling Brothers, Barnum and Bailey were in town, and we sprang for far better seats than in previous years. This year we could actually see what was happening rather than feeling like we were going to fall off the edge of the world. :) The girls loved the circus (and the snacks that went with it!), but I think Grammy liked it best of all, not having been to one since her kids were little! Then home for late naps, and then out to dinner at the Cheesecake Factory (super yum!) with Grammy and Aunt Kristin.

Sunday - Grammy headed home, and we went to church. A nice, relatively quiet day to get caught up on things.

Monday - The girls were champs and accompanied me on errands all morning as I attempted to get caught up on the million things I have neglected over the last six weeks. We celebrated by going out to lunch at Steak 'n' Shake with Cathy, Christopher, and Samuel. At night, I actually cooked a big elaborate dinner--something that hasn't happened in a very long time! Between my nausea over the summer and the busyness of working this fall, our diet has not been the greatest. I cooked good stuff every night this week and am really excited about getting back into the routine. Ben keeps moaning and groaning that he's going to gain weight, but I know he secretly likes it. :)

Tuesday - I took Bryn to preschool, and then Shay and I ran some more errands, including a long-overdue trip to the bank to iron out some things with our mortgage and my retirement account. We then played at the playground for a nice long time, and I got a good long catch-up phonecall with my friend Melissa, who has recently become a mommy to baby Will. Tuesday evening held dance class for Bryn--trust me, you cannot wait to see the cute pictures of this!

Wednesday - The girls and I headed to my Mom to Mom group at church. I was part of this group for the two years that I stayed home before, and I really missed it last year. It was SO good to get back with all these wonderful ladies and meet some new ones who have joined over the past year.

Thursday - Preschool for Bryn again. She adores her school and begs to go even on the days that it doesn't meet. While she was in class this day, Shay and I drove across town to attend her first Kindermusik class. We had both girls in a Family Time class last fall, which is designed for families with kids of multiple ages. That was fun, but already I can see Shay getting so much more out of a class designed especially for her age group.

Friday - The girls were again angel babies while I dragged them on errands. After way too short naps, I yanked them out of deep sleeps to throw then in the car and drive to my OB's office, where Ben met us in the parking lot and took them to the park during my appointment. I am thrilled to report that the baby has a good strong heartbeat and all is going well!! When we got home, Rob, Andrea, Hannah, and Hailey joined us for an evening of dinner and games. Bryn and Hannah are so cute playing together!

Saturday - I got up early and headed out to a nearby church for the Start from the Heart parenting conference. I got soooo pumped up from this and learned so many great things! I'll have to do a separate post just about that. Following the conference, I ran some errands for crafting supplies for the many projects I have planned. In the evening, we went to church and then went had a scrumptious dinner with the Julius clan, Mike, Kathleen, Emily, Sarah, and Kristin.

Sunday - Ben and I worked in Bryn's class at church this morning. Since then, it's been a pretty quiet afternoon and evening of getting caught up on some things around the house. Our big project was moving the crib and toddler bed out of Bryn's room and then moving in a big bed (actually the double bed I used before we got married). Tonight will be her first night in that!

So those were all the "ups" of the week, and I have several photo posts to follow to illustrate all those great things. The "downs" of the week have largely been remember. This week marked both the three-year anniversary of my first miscarriage and the one-year anniversary of my third miscarriage. While we are in a really good place right now, with two beautiful girls and a healthy baby on the way, it was still very, very hard to remember those babies that didn't make it. It made for a very odd juxtaposition, being so happy about being home with the girls while still being so sad about the bad things that have come before. Thank you to the many, many friends who expressed such an outpouring of love and support this week--love you all!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

More Information

Thank you so much for the deluge of well wishes that followed my last post! To attempt to answer some of the questions that you asked....

No, we do not know yet if it is a boy or a girl, but yes, we will be finding out. My new OB doesn't check until 20 weeks, so I've got a little less than 5 more to go before we can answer that burning question. :)

As for the "what are we hoping for," I'm not sure there's a good answer to that. Honestly, we'll just be thrilled to have a third baby. It wasn't that long ago (when I left University) that I was pretty sure there would be no more babies in our future (as I could no longer pay for fertility treatments), but God has a far better sense of timing than I do. We were very worried in the early days, but it looks like my number of "good" pregnancies will now be equal to my number of miscarriages. I know Ben would love a son, as so to add a little more male to our "house of women." As for me, I rooted for a boy with both Bryn and Shay, but in the end, I couldn't be happier with my two little princesses, so I'll take whatever I get!

Regarding the fertility treatments.... after six months of constant medication, shots, and bloodwork, not to mention immense medical bills, with no results, I lost my job at University and had to stop the treatments. Obviously we worried that without the treatments, I was a huge risk for another miscarriage, if I was even able to get pregnant again. But God is SO good, and I got pregnant during my first month off the fertility medicine. Of course, this was also my first month away from my uber-stressful job, so that may have had something to do with it as well....

But, yes, the fertility medication was out of my system, and yes, we are sure there's just one in there. I think that's pretty clear from the ultrasounds :), but there's also just one heartbeat.

And yes, Bryn and Shay seem to be really excited about being big sisters. Bryn tells everyone that "Mommy's baby is making her sick" (more on that in a second), and if you ask Shay where the baby is, she knows to point to Mommy's belly. Bryn seems to actually understand and keeps telling me that when the baby comes, she will help me rock it and give it milk. Shay's probably a little young for understanding (although about 4 months older than Bryn was when I was pregnant with her), but babies are one of her favorite things in the world, and she is constantly fawning over our friends' babies, so I think we're good there. :)

As for illness, I was pretty gross over the summer, which largely accounts for my lack of blogging during that time. Not as sick as I was with Bryn, for those who remember that nightmare, but definitely far sicker than I was with Shay. I have also had massive headaches nearly daily, and these have not lessened as I have entered the second trimester, although everything else seems to be feeling better. I am also insanely tired, but that may have something to do with the "working full time" and "raising a 1-year-old and a 3-year-old" in addition to the being pregnant. :)

Thankfully, my last day of work at Tri-West was this past Friday, and I am now officially a stay at home mom. While I really liked all the people I worked with, and it was nice to get back into a teaching job that didn't make me hate the world, I am quite happy to be done. It's wonderful to be home with the girls. And mid-day naps aren't bad either. :)

So, what do the next few months hold for us? No, I will not be looking for another job (not that I exactly looked for this last one either). I really do plan to stay at home at least the rest of this year, and hopefully beyond that as well, if finances permit. As her second birthday present this November, Shay will be moving out of the nursery and into her "big girl" room, which is the same thing that Bryn got for her second birthday. We haven't decided which of the two spare rooms to change into her room yet or how to decorate it, but once those decisions are made, I'm sure they will keep me very busy over the next two months! Many items, such as the crib and the toddler bed, will be moving out of Bryn's room and into Shay's, and Bryn will be getting the big bed out of the current guest room. Then the baby will be moving into the nursery, which is currently Shay's but was Bryn's before that. Meanwhile, I'm trying to finish up a million unfinished projects, such as completing (okay, starting) Shay's baby book and decorating the playroom, before this baby arrives.

Look for posts over the next few days over all the fun we've had in the past few weeks, including a trip to Camp Tecumseh, fun at the local fair, and the circus. Although I'm a "lady of leisure" these days, my girls are keeping plenty busy. Bryn has preschool two days a week, and she has also started taking dance lessons. Shay starts Kindermusik class this week. I'll also be rejoining my two local moms' groups. So all in all, we've still got something on the calendar for nearly every day, and we're having a great time!

As a side note, even when I don't have time to sit down and blog, I do try to keep my Twitter somewhat updated, and that shows up in my blog sidebar, so you can always check that if you're desperate to know how we're all doing. :)