Saturday, November 28, 2009
Our Christmas season began last weekend. After an overnight "Girl's night" in Indiana, Aimee and I came home to a living room full of boxes, just waiting to be unpacked. We all took turns hanging up our special ornaments, and the Angel that has lived on top of our tree since 2001 was finally displaced by the coffee filter angel that Aimee made in preschool last year.
The displaced angel was purchased at a Walgreens in Indiana by Brian the first year we celebrated Christmas togather. He surprised me with a fresh tree, one of those light grids in the shape of a Christmas tree that you just drape over the tree, and 2 boxes of ball ornaments...all purchased at Walgreens (except for the tree).
The night before thanksgiving, we tried to light a fire in our fireplace before bedtime so that we could have storytime by the fire, but it seems that a nice family of wasps decided to make our chimney their home. Brian boarded up the fireplace and we had storytime and thanksgiving time by candle light instead.
Thanksgiving was special because it was the first year that Aimee really understood the significance of the holiday. She interviewed the family while we sat around the dinner table to find out what we were thankful for, and told Brian and me that she was thankful for us several times that day. She even told Danny that he was the most beautiful baby she's ever seen.
Last night, we bundled up and drove to Downtown Aurora to see the lighting of the Christmas Tree. I was able to convince Aimee that the young small live reindeer that were available for pictures and petting were on loan from Santa. The real bearded Santa passed right by us on his way to the Christmas tree, and Aimee got a picture with Dorothy from the Wizard of Oz, who was passing out fliers to promote the theater production of The Wizard Of Oz playing in theater across the street.
We sat in front of the tree and had Chocolate Abuelita from Brian's thermos, walked along the river, and came back home to have popcorn and watch Polar Express. Danny enjoyed being outside at night and took the time in the car ride to make conversation with us.
In the weeks to come: Downtown Chicago, The Polar Express at Blackberry Farm, and maybe another girl's weekend.
Monday, November 16, 2009
His new interests include:
- Wrestling with Aimee. (especially sitting on her head when his diaper is not dry).
- The words Monster and Trucks
- Goliath's lines in the story of "David and Goliath" "BRING OUT YOUR BEST SOLDIER TO FIGHT ME!" said in the most menacing tone that a 2 year old can summon.
- Putting peanut butter on anything he can.
- The Wiggles dances
- His Elmo baby.
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
Aimee's hair is long and thick and beautiful and it needs a trimming, but I don't want to take her to the salon because I'm afraid they'll cut off more than I want them to, so I'm avoiding it.
Daniel is turning into a typical boy. He loves to growl and jump off of things. I love it.
Work is insane. In a good way. I am starting to love my job and I am stressed in a way that makes me productive and feel good at the end of the day.
I am loving the parents in Aimee's new preschool class. It probably deserves it's own blog entry. Let's just say that there is some serious community being built there and probably some lasting friendships.
It feels like things are looking up.
Saturday, October 10, 2009
He was just a tiny little loaf of bread when he was born. 6 lbs, 7 oz. He was the easiest baby I could ask for. When Aimee started pre-school, he wasn't a year old and as soon as he learned to walk, he became like the Mayor of the community center. He would proudly walk in every morning and say hello to every single person in the hallway. He would stop to inspect anything that was new or seemed out of place. Everyone knew him and random people would stop me to tell me how quickly he was growing.
Now my little loaf of bread is two years old. His vocabulary leaves me speechless. He practically has Goodnight Moon memorized and has a favorite bible story. The story of David and Goliath.
He prays when we pray "Dear Jesus, Amen!" or "I love you, Amen!", and can't go to sleep without a hug and kiss from his older sister.
He jumps up and down Friday mornings when I tell him we are going to Story Time. We are taking a gymnastics class once a week and he can easily do somersaults, walk on the balance beam, and he conquered his fear of the giant scary looking Air Track. He loves making friends and is currently obsessed with feet.
When I feel how solid his little arms and legs are, and how sure he is of his movements, I am taken aback. The other day, Stephanie traced his foot to make me a little card to take to work(She says she tried to trace his hands, but he demanded that she trace his foot), and my stomach just sinks when I see how big he is. In my mind, he feet still fit in the palm of my hand, but the reality is that he keeps growing. and growing. and growing.
That card reminds me that I need to be intentional about enjoying my children. Danny will never get lost in a baby blanket again. I love love LOVE that he's growing. He is as delightful as I could have hoped for, but I wish he would stay little just a little longer.
Thursday, October 01, 2009
One of the sad things about school and extra curricular classes is that it has given her the opportunity to have a private life that she doesn't have to share with me. After 5 weeks of ballet, she still refuses to show me any of her moves, or even tell me about it. We are only allowed to watch on the assigned parent days in order to keep the kids from getting distracted. I have talked to the teacher and asked her if Aimee enjoys the class. The teacher assures me that Aimee is attentive and seems to enjoy it.
Yesterday she told me to just relax and chill out (with the attitude of a 14 year old). Today she told me that I did NOT look pretty as I was leaving for work, in hopes that I would change my mind and stay with her instead. It almost broke my heart.
On Sunday we went out for ice cream. She pointed across the parking lot and asked me what that other building was. I told her it was Olive Garden, a restaurant, she asked me if I would take her there. I think I will this weekend.
Friday, September 18, 2009
We recently celebrated the anniversary of the day we met. After 8 years of being a couple, it didn't occur to me that we should celebrate it, but it did occur to Brian. We had a wonderful night of dinner, conversation, $10 hot chocolate, and a relaxing nighttime walk around the riverwalk. It was wonderful and just what I needed to remind me of my purpose in marriage, motherhood, and life.
I remember that conversation I had with God vividly. It was, to me, a burning bush moment.
My relationship with Brian is easy. Loving him is easy. Wanting to spend time with him? Easy. Seeing him every day? Can't get enough of him. But this marriage thing, this family thing, this grown-up parenting thing? not so easy sometimes.
Meeting and falling in love with Brian was, to me, a response to that burning bush moment. It was a promise. Yesterday my husband presented me with a rainbow. A reminder that God is faithful to complete the work that he began, and that he never breaks his promises.
Wednesday, July 29, 2009
I have been fighting against stress induced paralysis. Sometimes I just deal by not dealing, and that, my friends, is not a good way to deal. So I am committing to doing. Not TRYING to do it, DOING IT.
I have a new job. It started three months ago and today it looks very different from what I even interviewed for. It's been hard. I have to prove myself, and I am frozen with fear that I may not be able to meet my goals. So, I am trying to just shut it all off and go for it.
It seems like Aimee and Daniel have changed so much in the last few months. Daniel has a vocabulary that expands every day. He has an obsession with Elmo. He loves to play with his matchbox cars. He wants to do everything Aimee does. He hates going to the grocery store and it makes my life more difficult, but he randomly gives me kisses and it makes it all better. Aimee and Danny are both taking some classes now. Aimee is in her 2nd year of Pre-school and Ballet. Daniel is taking a Gymnastics class and will be attending storytime at the library.
Aimee has blossomed in so so many ways. She continues to be a fashionista and is now all about matching and jewelry. Going places with her is an entirely new experience and everything I ever hoped it would be. I am amazed and impressed with her ability to express what she's feeling and what needs emotionally and she breaks my pride and makes me feel ashamed when she asks for affection after I've diciplined her in anger.
So how is everything else? Well...it's funny how going through a difficult time can leave you strengthened in some areas and weakened in others. Perspective? So easy to lose. Commitment? I'm short-sighted. Regrets? Many. But I won't go into that, because I'm not as brave as my 4 year old daughter.
Sunday, March 01, 2009
I'll finish the story about Aimee at the zoo. Here's a quick version of what happened. Aimee had been climbing and jumping in the baby play area. Technically, she shouldn't have been doing that, but I let her because there was only one other baby besides Danny and she wasn't doing it near them. All of a sudden, the place was full of babies and three other girls that were there with a field trip joined in on the climbing and jumping action. I told Aimee to stop it and explained that it wasn't safe with all the babies. Aimee and two of the girls stopped, but one didn't. The girl that didn't stop climbed onto a pretend log that was right in front of Aimee. Aimee tried climbing as well, but I stopped her. Aimee stood there looking at the little girl. The little girl (about 4 years old) stopped climbing, got right in her face, and said, "What? Do you want to fight me because I'm climbing?". Right then the chaperone called them to move on to the next location. It made me think about when I was a kid. I am the oldest and I was raised to be kind and respectful. When I encountered kids with attitude, I was just lost and didn't know how to react. I'll have to figure out how I'm going to prepare Aimee for that kind of stuff.
Brian was laid off on Friday. We had a feeling it was going to happen. The company he was working for is all but shutting down. From 120 employees last month to about 20-30 in March.
We are hoping to hear good news this week from the other company he interviewed with in January. Keep us in your prayers. We are hopeful.
Thursday, February 26, 2009
A great time was had by all, except that a 4 year old challenged Aimee to fight. Yes, she actually asked Aimee if she wanted to fight her.
More details to come.
Wednesday, February 11, 2009
Good thing his sister is cute too.
Lord, help me.
Sunday, February 08, 2009
Daniel is growing too. He is having temper tantrums (too cute!), he counts to two as he's going up the stairs, he LOVES playing with balls and cars, and he can actually feed himself with a spoon! He also said "I love you" for the first (and only) time. He said it to Aimee before she took a nap and now refuses to repeat it. He loves pushing the handicap open door button at the community center. He always tries helping me with dishes by closing the dishwasher and is really proud of himself when I let him. He is completely in awe of Brian and almost always prefers his company to anyone elses.
Thursday, January 29, 2009
I once had a conversation with a friend about ego-maniac men and the women who love them, protect them, and turn a blind eye to their scandalous behavior. This all seems so familiar in so many ways. I had a boss like Blago. When he finally lost his job, his mantra became, "I did all of these things for my employees! I just tried to make our workplace better! I had all of these wonderful ideas to improve our customer's lives!" Yeah right buddy. If you had just done your job and not put everything on me while you flipped houses instead of doing your job, you'd still have one.
I wish I would have voted for Judy Barr Topinka.
She's crazy too, but in a legal and lovable way.
Tuesday, January 27, 2009
Sunday, January 18, 2009
Curt started off by telling the church that He asked Brian out to lunch that same day he was let go and expected Brian to be a total wreck. He was really surprised that Brian was pretty calm about the whole thing.
Brian then talked about how losing his job was a real shock and how the last time he was let go from a job he was 24, lived with his parents and all he had was a car payment. He totally went off the deep end.
This time, even though he has a family to provide for, he felt oddly at peace and he knew that even if the worst was to happen (like losing our house or something) it wouldn't destroy our family and we'd be ok. He talked about how he learned over the past several years that a man's job doesn't define him, that his self worth comes from being loved by God and family. He also knew that God would provide for us. Then he said that that we could have prayed more, and we weren't walking around being all like, "we know God will give us what we want!" (He said it in an exaggerated manly voice), but that faith for him meant accepting whatever God has for us and knowing that we will be ok.
Then Curt shared that about a week and a half ago, Brian called him to have coffee and he was expecting to have to council Brian out of depression or something, but that it was to talk about his 1st job offer, and that while they were hanging out, the 2nd job offer came in!
Brian said that he was really thankful that God was faithful to us, even when we aren't as faithful to Him as we should be, that he was thankful for our family and friends, and that he KNOWS that the things that matter most are the relationships in our life with God and others.
Some of the other things he was going to share include:
Even though Brian felt pretty secure about not losing his job, he started bringing his tools and personal things home a few weeks before he lost his job. He feels that God was prepared him.
He took a class on hydrolics last semester and didn't just get an A, the retiring teacher told Brian that he should apply to teach the class next year. The company he works for now makes parts for hydrolic machinery.
Brian has made a big career jump, he wouldn't have had the guts to try out for this new job if he had stayed at his old job.
Wednesday, January 14, 2009
The only way she will sleep is if she has no less than 7 of any combination of : stuffed animals, dolls, books, her princess tent, her new baby carrier that she got for Christmas, stickers, and any other random thing. She also must have a minimum of 3 blankets; teddy blankie, princess sleeping bag, her new princess comforter (also a Christmas gift) are the staples.
Every night when we pray over dinner she thanks God for the egg our neighbor threw at Brian a few weeks ago. (I was in the middle of making cookies when I realized that I was short an egg. Our neighbor threw one at Brian and then gave us a carton of 17 more.)
She gets excited about seeing blood. I know this sounds macabre so let me explain why: Blood = a band aid. She loves band aids. If you didn't know that and saw her reaction to blood, you would think she was a little vampire.
His favorite thing to do is to transport a large amount of tiny things from room to room. He takes handfuls of stuff and moves them from the floor in the living room, to the middle of the kitchen floor, to a chair in the breakfast area, to the middle of the playroom. This keeps him entertained for very long periods of time.
He loves to pretend to rock out with his various toy guitars.
He can't live without Aimee, even though she drives him crazy sometimes with her aggressive love. One day he woke up and Aimee wasn't home and all he did was go in and out of her room looking for her.
He can find any area that is suitable for hiding where ever he is, and he will sit there patiently for a looong time until we find him.
Friday, January 09, 2009
Thanks to call who prayed, offered encouragement, gave good advise, helped him look for jobs. We are incredibly blessed.
Wednesday, January 07, 2009
Sunday, January 04, 2009
The hardest part about being unemployed is the waiting.
We have a lot up in the air right now. This week will be big for us. We will be making some big decisions. Please pray.
That is all.