Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Today in sentences.

It is way chillier than the last day of April should ever be.

Levi and I (with Nathan's help at noon) put up our new trampoline!

I am hoping the trampoline will be a fun energy-buster (and hopefully not bone-buster!) this summer.

Levi said he didn't want his trains upstairs but I brought them up anyway and he played with them for a good long time :)

Mommy knows best.

I am loving to read again these days...haven't read much of anything since Levi was born, or at least not more than one book every couple months!

I'm taking a bit of an unofficial break from my Uniquely Me Design business; still taking orders but not advertising.  I only have so much energy each day and right now there are two little people who deserve my energy much more than the business world does.

I've never anticipated spring so much as this year; having a 2 year old boy in the same 4 walls for 6 unending months produces cabin fever to the highest degree!

If I had a day completely to myself, I would either go through our house and purge the extras/spring clean OR sleep the entire day.  (It would be a toss-up.)

I've been finding myself quite home-sick for California these past few months, and for more reasons than just the weather!  It really became home while we were there...

Levi is has finally graduated into the "good sleeper" category!  I'd say he sleeps through the night about 50-75% of the time now (though you'd have to ask Nathan as he's been getting up with him to take him pee and I've been sleeping through Levi's wakings - yet am up as soon as Kayden so much as breathes differently when she wakes up!)

A couple months ago I put a lock on my phone and moved my games so that Levi couldn't find them, thus convincing him that my games were gone.  It broke his habit of always wanting to play phone, which was nice!  In a moment of weakness, I moved the games back and removed the lock.  Levi found them and is back to "please play your phone please mommy?"  I put the lock back on so that I decide when he plays :)

These sentences are getting longer and longer.

I love having a girl and a boy.

I would have loved having two boys just as much. :D

I am amazed every day at the breadth of Levi's vocabulary...yesterday he opened the windows and told me "I make the house fresh for you, Mommy!"

Thinking about switching to cloth wipes in addition to my cloth diapers...thoughts?

Lennox needs a serious grooming.  I sweep regularly and it is still like walking on sandpaper in here with the amount of dirt/sand he tracks in every day.

I'm obviously running out of things to say.

Happy Tuesday, everyone!

Here's a couple pictures taken just this morning to finish off the post in style:

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Who am I?

I love being 27.  It truly feels like a great age.  I am still young.  No grey hairs.  No fine lines on my face.  It's still easy to keep off those extra pounds.  I think I'm finally starting to look my age rather than like a 14 year old (most of the time...I still get people butting in front of me in line because they think I'm just a kid waiting for their parent).  Yup, overall 27 is pretty good.

I also like 27 because I am finally starting to know and understand who I am.  From the time I hit adolescence until about a year or two ago, I've struggled with knowing exactly who I am.  And if I did have a sense of who I was, I was constantly asking "is who I am good enough? Is it ok to be that person?"  At 27, I'm finally finding words to describe who I am and the confidence to own that person fully and joyfully.  I love me!

I am a person who is constantly thinking but who does not always have words to express what I'm thinking.  If I am asked a question out of the blue, I'll likely have nothing to share (much of the reason I dislike and dread most casual phone conversations!).  But if I'm given time to think about the question or have had time to think about something, I'll be much more likely to have something to talk about! 

What do I constantly think about?  Well, alot of what I think about is people.  Relationships.  What makes people who they are.  Why people do what they do and act the way they act.  What makes me who I am?  What has contributed to making me who I am?  There are always reasons...

Family plays a huge roll in who people are.  As I was growing up, I always just assumed that families were all the same...and obviously they were all like mine!  (Well, it wasn't quite that simple.  Not all families were the same.  But all the families who were happy and functional were certainly just like mine!)  Obviously I've known that this isn't quite the case for a while now.  But as I explore relationships more and more, I'm realizing just how different families can be and how certain subtleties between even two functional families can produce vastly different values and actions in the family members. 

Because I grew up in a family that tells stories, I am someone who loves to listen to and tell stories.  When my family sat at the dinner table, we told stories.  Stories in the form of jokes (thanks Reader's Digest!).  Stories about our days.  Stories about whatever.   I am someone who looks for the story in every situation.  I don't so much focus on the theoretical side of things, nor the theological side.  I am always on the lookout for the practical, real-life lesson. (This probably contributes to my relational, who-people-are thoughts to some degree.  It all comes back to people's stories.)

Because I grew up in a family that valued time together, I now value my family time very highly.  It's not the same if everyone isn't there.  It's special to spend one-on-one time with members of the family, of course, but there is a certain depth to the joy that comes when everyone in the family is together that's just not the same when someone is missing.

I've also started to value my introverted personality in the past couple years like I hadn't before.  I used to think that it was something to be overcome instead of seeing it as the gift it is.  While I still need to push myself sometimes because getting out is healthy for me, whether or not I always feel like it (like eating my veggies), I also give myself permission to care for myself by giving myself space and letting myself say no to some social opportunities.  But I've written about this before so I'll carry on...

It's a never-ending project, the study of one's self.  How well do you know yourself?  In what ways did the family you grew up in influence who you are today?  How does who you are affect your relationships?  Are you comfortable in your own skin? When all the noise and distractions are gone and you're alone with yourself, do you embrace that time or reach for a distraction? It's fascinating to spend some time thinking about these things, or at least I think so!  And I'd say 27 is a pretty good age to do this as I've got a fairly decent history in which my personality has been developed and still I have the rest of my life to live with myself and put my knowledge to good use :)

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Two and a half

Levi is just 4 days away from being 2.5 years old! 

He is such a character.  He loves to make us laugh. 

He loves to serve.

"I make cookies for you, Daddy!" 

"I help set the table!"

"I get a diaper and wipe for you, Mommy!" 

He is also very two and we've had our battles of the will (and more to come, I'm sure).  From who fills up the water jug to what cd he listens to at night...anything and everything is grounds for a meltdown.  But we're dealing with it in the best way we can and the tantrums seem to go in stages which says to me that he's testing the waters, seeing what it means to be more independent and trying to make decisions for himself (though not quite knowing how to communicate when something doesn't go the way he thinks it should). 

Children aren't born knowing how to communicate.  It is our job as parents to help them understand how to do that.  And it is our job to be patient as they begin to exert their independence.  (Yup, still working on this).

Levi loves puppies.  Levi loves cooking.  Levi loves trucks and machines.  Levi loves to count.  Levi loves letters.  Levi loves puzzles.  Levi loves slides.  Levi loves tents.  Levi loves animals.  Levi loves taking people to his room, closing the door and enjoying some quality time playing together.  Levi loves stories.  Levi loves playing piano.  Levi loves music.  Levi loves helping me transplant my houseplants.

Levi "no like" broccoli (too yucky).  Levi "no like" touching sticky things.  Levi "no like" having his hair washed.  Levi "no like" carbonation.  Levi "no like" socks with holes.  Levi "no like" daddy shows (sports). 

Levi, like every two year old, says the most interesting and hilarious things. 

"Garburate" as in "Here, Kayden, I garburate you!" (vibrating chair)
"I love you, Buddy." - said to Kayden just this morning
"Puppy LOVE me!" - while he holds Lennox in a headlock hug.
"Lettuce" as in "Lettuce, go get your ball!"
"Oh well" when he is not allowed to do something or when we are out of his favourite cereal.
"Buy more" when we are out of his favourite cereal.
"Oh well, buy a new one" when Mommy gets the van stuck in the snow bank.

I love our boy so much.   He is a perfect fit in our family (interesting how we always get the perfect ones for us, right?).  He is obviously still adjusting to having a sibling, but he is doing so so well.  We are incredibly proud of him for all the ways he is growing and learning every day.  There are many days when Nathan comes home from work and asks how Levi has been and I can honestly say that "he is an absolute delight!" 

Two Months Old

Kayden is two months old today. 
 She is our little sweetheart.  Seriously, sweetest baby ever.  She is so quiet and content 90% of the time.  And when something is bothering her, it is easily fixed (give her food, remove brotherly smothering affection, burp her, hold her). 
While I joke about Levi's brotherly love being a bit much at times, I am starting to notice a little bond happening between these two.  It is amazing to see.  Kayden is starting to watch Levi as he plays or eats...I can't wait for the day that these two can truly play together and make each other laugh! (we'll not think about the fights that will indefinitely happen as well)
Kayden is growing quickly.  She was weighed yesterday and is 10lbs2oz now.  Up almost 4lbs from birth!  Apparently she has only grown 3/4", measuring at 20.5".  I don't know if I trust that measurement since she has grown out of both newborn and 0-3 month sleepers, fitting well into the 3 month size.  If she is, indeed, only 20.5" now, she has yet to reach her brother's length at birth.  I think this girl may be destined to be the small one in the family.  Her weight to height ratio is at the top of the charts, though, at 97%!  So...looks like she'll be short and chubby just like I was at that age!
 From the time we found out that we were expecting again last June, we started praying for a good sleeper this time around.  At that point, Levi still wasn't sleeping through the night more than once or twice every 2-3 weeks.  I was tired and not sure how I would make it through another two solid years of interrupted sleep every night.  It seems our prayers have been answered.  Kayden not only sleeps alot (15-18 hours a day still), she sleeps deeply and at the right times.  She goes down for the night around 10pm, sleeps a 5 hour stretch, eats, sleeps another 3 hours before another feed, then is up for the day about 2-3 hours later.  She dozes on and off all morning then has a 3-4 hour nap in the afternoon followed by an evening of dozing on and off again.  Now we'll just keep working on Levi sleeping through the night on a regular basis...
Our girl is such a wonderful addition to our family.  She is absolutely beautiful...we are often without words at how beautiful she is.  She has blue eyes right now and, while they are darker around the edge, they are still very blue without a hint of brown as of yet.  Perhaps she will be our blue eyed girl?
Kayden is starting to give smiles more and more.  They are few and far between still, but every once in a while she will look you right in the eyes and give you a grin. More often, though, it is a wall, light or the dog that get her cheeky grins.  She seems to be a bit more serious than her ever-goofy brother, but that is just fine.  The world (and this family) needs all types.  It is amazing to see her personality coming out more and more!
Kayden Grace, we love you so very much!  Happy two months, girlie!