Monday, December 23, 2013

Life is busy

My days are so full, I can't even believe how much I do in a day. Diapers, nursing, washing diapers and clothes, changing outfits, cooking and cleaning up... I am constantly busy. This is definitely the way I prefer it, but I just can't believe the amount I do and have to do every single day. 

I'm trying to find an indoor clothesline solution to reduce the amount that I use my dryer, too. Especially today while the power is out, I have clothes air drying everywhere and diapers hanging to dry all over the place, and that makes me wonder why I don't air dry things all the time. 

I can't believe how big the boys are getting. Luke is in 9 month clothes and sprouting up fast and Arie is finally filling out his 18 month clothes. 

Every day is awesome because both Luke and Arie reach milestone after milestone. 

My sister is here and without me telling him, he remembered from when she was here a few weeks ago on Thanksgiving that her name was Liz. He knows Mama, Dada, Lukey, Dixie, Puppy (Bessie) and now Liz by name. 

This is such an amazing thing to have children and watch them learn about themselves and their abilities, and then the world around them. I'm just so amazed. 

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

For all the haters

I know that putting myself out here like I do in so many different ways opens me up to criticism. I have gotten my fair share of if, this is the internet after all, where mean and sad people can cowardly sit behind the cloak of their keyboard and spew out negativity from their fingertips. 

I don't share my life for people like that. I share my life to come alongside and lift up those who think they are alone. 

I have gone through so much and sharing my journey helps me, but more importantly, it builds up others. Me putting myself out there for all to see, all of my vulnerabilities, my weaknesses and my struggles and triumphs, help others. 

I have been sharing my life in a blog for 12 years. I've shared so much of myself. 

I have lifted up people struggling with their families. I have lifted up couples and helped to repair marriages. I have encouraged people of all faiths. I have supported moms who have gone through the loss of a child. I have supported and been right along side of the moms who desperately struggle to conceive. 

My story gives people hope for their own miracles. Sharing my story gives people all over the world hope and encouragement. 

Sharing my parenting story encourages and validates those not as confident. It encourages those with surrounded by ignorance who are being torn down by loved ones. Sharing my story shows the ignorant that their views are not the only views. 

I have been so blessed over the years to have received comments and emails from those who my story has touched. 1000s of emails and comments over the years telling me how one part or another of my story that I've shared has met them right where they are in their life. 

I share myself and my story not because I think I'm more important, but because I think we are all important and that God will use me and use my life in ways I will never predict and probably ways I'll never even know about. 

I'm not surrounded by pillars of support. I stand next to my husband on The Rock. I stand supported by my faith in Christ. 

Jesus tells us that we will be HATED because of him. And I have experienced that hate, and I'm sure that I've not experienced the last of it. 

I'm putting on the armor of God and following Him and staying true to the path He has chosen for me. 




Monday, December 9, 2013

6 months & 21 months old.

6 Month Update

  • Cloth Diapering
    • Diaper Laundry goes in the wash every morning. On really good and productive days, I get other laundry done too. 
    • We switched back again to prefolds and covers. Dealing with stink issues is something I just don't have time for, and the synthetic fibers in a pocket hold on to stink, where 100% cotton prefolds are bullet-proof and really easy to care for and use. And, with the amount of diaper changes in this house, that's what I need. 
    • One more aspect here, that I can't even believe I'm typing right now... Potty Training! Arie is 21 months old and now knows what the potty is and is starting to understand that. This past Tuesday, after we got up from a nap, I went to change Arie's diaper and he was dry. I asked him if he had to go potty and he nodded and said, "potty." I took his hand and shuffled him into the bathroom and sat him at the edge of the toilet. I aimed for him and said, "pee pee." He grunted and said, "pee pee!" And went pee! In the potty!!!! 
    • It's time to either buy a step stool and a seat for our toilet, or a little potty for Arie. My first school of thought though is that if I buy the little potty, won't we have to teach him twice? Once to go on the small potty, and then again to go on the big potty. And, then, isn't the small potty just one more thing I'll have to clean? Hmmm.... 

  • Tandem Breastfeeding
    • Everything is going pretty well. Both boys are still climbing on the charts. 
    • Luke has two bottom teeth which are like little daggers when he bites me. Most of the time I can tell when a bite is coming, and I can try to quickly get my nipple out of his mouth. Unfortunately, I still get bit a few times a day. 
    • I'm trying to teach Luke the sign for milk. I never taught Arie and he says, "nigh nigh" to ask to nurse. In the last week, or so, I've begun to teach Arie "milk" and the sign. He is doing it now, and I'm excited to see it stick! I don't know when babies will start to sign or how long it will take Luke to make the connection. 
    • Arie is becoming quite the spectacle when he wants to nurse now, especially if other people are around. I'm assuming other people make whatever stress he's under when he's asking to nurse magnified, so that's why it seems like he's freaking out. He grabs at my shirt and pulls and cries. I'm hoping the signing will help calm that, even if a little so that the first time he asks, it's silent. 
    • Arie seems to be eating a little bit better. Not consistently, and not every meal, but some meals he will actually eat a lot more than he ever did. 
    • Arie is 22lbs and Luke is just about 17lbs. 
    • I'm still dairy and soy free. The weight loss challenge that I joined is now over and I was a winner. I went from 146 when it started 4 weeks ago to 137 yesterday morning. I felt like the last month, I must have stopped the plateau I had been on. Both boys gained about a pound in the last month, so it hasn't seemed to have affected my supply. 

  • Sleep
    • I really don't want to jinx it, but for about the last week, Arie only wakes up once or maybe twice a night to nurse. 
    • Arie will now crawl over to Jack to snuggle up and go to sleep when he's done nursing. You just TRY to get that kid out of our bed, even if I wanted to, there's no way Jack would give up that. He's at work all day and still gets a ton of cuddle time. Win. Win. 
    • Floor bed is still ok. It's fair to say that neither Jack or I likes sleeping on the floor, but any day now Luke will be crawling and it really is the safest scenario. 
    • Arie really does sleep in our bed more than the twin next to our bed. It's nice for the first stretch of the night sometimes to have a little bit of extra breathing room, but most nights I have both boys sleeping so close and snuggled up to me that I can't even roll the tiniest bit one way or the other. 
    • We usually change the boys about once a night now. 
    • Naps are okay. (I'm rocking the boys as they nap as I write this!) They are generally from 12ish to 3ish. Give or take an hour. Somehow Luke will cat nap in the morning and then take a real good nap at the same time as Arie while I rock them both. And then again before bed, Luke usually takes another 10-20 minute cat nap. 

  • Home life - House stuff
    • I painted the entire laundry room! I can't even believe I'm typing it and it was one crazy endeavor, all done by me. I painted 3 or 4 coats of white on the trim and doors. 2 coats of fresh white ceiling paint. And 2 coats of a beautiful brown on the walls. We still need to replace the flooring, it's press on tile that's 15 years old, so that's still on the eventual to-do. We need to hang some coat hooks, paint the hardware to oil rubbed bronze and just some other little finishing touches. 
    • The carpet cleaner was a great decision. The downstairs carpets and the stairs have been done, and I still need to do our upstairs. 
    • Jack fixed my steering on my Durango and he's on his way home from getting new tires right now. 
    • Last weekend, I was able to stack some wood while Jack rocked the boys while they slept. Luke woke up and freaked out that I wasn't there. I came in pretty quick, but man, my kids love and need their mama! 
    • I'd love a maid. 
  • Going Out and About
    • Going out is now something that I'm limiting to as little as possible. It's below freezing now and will probably remain that way for the next 2-3 months. Hibernation mode activated. 
    • I finally got my woven wrap conversion and I think it might make trips a little quicker with two kids in one carrier. It's not exactly ideal though. It's just never quite fast enough with two babies and bitter cold weather and snow. 
  • Postpartum Recovery
    • I'm finally starting to feel a difference in my lower back and hip pain. I went two weeks between chiropractor visits for the first time in over a year! I discovered my stomach muscles split and have been doing targeted muscle workouts to correct that and already I'm seeing an incredible difference in my daily pain! 
    • I joined a weightloss challenge. I already commented on this, last month I started the challenge at 146lbs. I weighed 137 yesterday, after 4 weeks. My long term goal was 125lbs and I'm now 12 pounds away from that. It truly blows my mind that I could ever be that close to my all time dream goal of a weight. 
    • My body is definitely smaller. I wear a size 6 now and I'm not sure how much longer that will be the correct size, especially with losing 9lbs in the last month. 
    • I'm curious to see if my body is just going to hit the weight it wants to be and then just hold steady. 
    • Mentally and emotionally: I'm still pretty angry with my midwife. I was 6 1/2 months pp when I got pregnant with Luke and the thought of the healing process that still needs to take place in order to hire another midwife... Ugh. Just UGH. I don't like that I will have to discuss what happened with the new midwife, and then I have no way of knowing if they are friends, and that leaves them AND me in an awkward position. Actually, I think I would like to start interviewing midwives now to maybe begin the healing process. If God blesses us with another pregnancy, I would like to be completely ready in that respect and I think that would alleviate a lot of stress. 

  • Brotherly Love
    • They absolutely adore each other.
    • Arie is so in love with Luke. If he thinks we might possibly be leaving Luke behind, he will throw himself on to Luke yelling and crying out, "Brother!!" And trying to pull him to come with us. It's the most precious thing in the world. 
    • Luke loves Arie to pieces. They just spend all day watching each other and laughing and squealing at each other. 

  • Luke
    • Weighs about 17lbs. I will try to measure him tonight and see how long he is now. 
    • He's so happy. But, his little personality is starting to shine through. When he drops his toy or wants a sip of my ice water, he will arch his back and really let out a screech! 
    • He rolls over but I haven't seen him roll across the room yet, or make an attempt to get his knees up. He's just now sitting unassisted for a few seconds here and there. 
    • He's tried a couple different foods. We aren't consistently feeding him, but I'll hand him a raw fruit or vegetable here and there. We need to get another booster chair because Luke is definitely ready to sit at the table and not on our laps. 

    • He definitely still loves his mama best and daddy second best. He spends his days in my arms, in a wrap, or sitting on the floor close to me. I'm definitely cherishing these last days with my baby because the cuddles and 24/7 holding does NOT last forever. 
  • Arie
    • He is talking alllllll the time. He wakes up in the middle of the night mumbling random words. He's trying so hard to talk about everything he sees and will repeat something completely incoherent at you but nodding and every insistent. 
    • He LOVES his cars and trucks.  He says Monster Truck, Dump Truck. He has a big truck book and loves to point at all the different kinds. 
    • He seems to be eating more every day and he will ask to eat too. He knows how to say cheese and will go to the fridge and ask for cheese. 
    • Naps are much more consistently every day and they last 2-3 hours! 
    • I taught him the sign for milk and milk instead of nigh nigh. He picked it up in less than a day. I'm hoping Luke will learn that too!
    • He's turning more and more into a rough and tumble little boy. For a good half hour tonight, I rolled around on the floor with him and he just laughed and laughed. I tried to teach him a somersault. 
I am completely amazed that it's been 6 months since Luke was born and that Arie is 21 months old! My babies will be 2 & 1 before I know it!! I think the older they get, the more I will get asked if they are twins. 


Sunday, December 1, 2013

Thanksgiving is over

All of the chaos of Thanksgiving is over and now I just need to clean my house again. 

My sister came to visit and stayed with us over Thanksgiving and went home yesterday afternoon. 

We went to Jack's parents to celebrate and eat dinner on Thursday, and on Friday, we made dinner here with my mom, sister, brother, and sister-in-law. 

I've also been in the process of starting to re-do the laundry room. We had not touched the room since we moved in 3 1/2 years ago. Jack added our second washing machine and plumbed everything. We took down the ceiling border of wallpaper and yesterday, I did two coats of paint around the border of the ceiling and one coat of paint rolled on to the ceiling. I also finished about 40% of my first coat of white trim paint. I'm thinking it's going to take 2, maybe three coats. 

I forgot how much I love and hate painting at the same time. The laundry room was so dingey and gross looking and a fresh coat of paint changes everything. I also hate how time consuming it is because I can't guarantee that babies will cooperate. 

It certainly is not easy to accomplish things around the house with a 5 1/2 month old who is used to being worn all day. And I'm certainly not going to babywear and paint... My $200 wraps do not need paint on them. 

If only I had a crummy wrap that could get dirty and painted on. 

I have to do another coat of ceiling paint and a bunch of coats of trim painting and also paint the doors. Doors take so much time! 

It's going to look fabulous when we are done though. 


Saturday, November 23, 2013

Back to good sleep!

For almost a week, Luke has been waking up hourly, crying. This is not normal for him. Since he was a couple weeks old, he has slept at night and only roused to nurse, not fully waking. 

Tonight, he was back to that. What a relief! It's 7am. I haven't gotten out of bed since 10:30pm when I laid down, and both boys are sleeping. Luke is right up against my front and Arie is pressed along my back. 

I think I've nursed Arie 2 or 3 times and Luke probably the same tonight. Ahhh, this is nice. 

 

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Sixth Wedding Anniversary

It's really hard to believe that we have been married for 6 years. We have been through so much in our last 6 years. 

When we got married, we lived in my dad's apartment. 

On Our first anniversary, we lived in Wisconsin, but had traveled to Trout Lake, Michigan for the weekend to go to Uncle Dave & Annie's lake house. 

On our second anniversary, we had just moved back to Michigan from Wisconsin, and we were unpacking at Jack's unxle's house. 

On our third anniversary, I can't even remember what we did. We had just bought this house a few months before and we had just our in our boiler, so we were probably broke.

On our fourth anniversary, I was very pregnant, and we had just taken our foster son to live at his forever home. We went out to eat and went home to an empty and quiet house.

On our fifth anniversary, we had Arie and I had recorded a video of an "early anniversary present" for Jack, me telling him that I was pregnant again. 

Here we are. Six years married. A cat. Two dogs. A house. And two kids. It went by in a blink. 


Wednesday, November 13, 2013

5 Month Update


  • Cloth Diapering
    • Diaper Laundry goes in the wash every morning. On really good and productive days, I get other laundry done too. 
    • We switched back to pockets stuffed with prefolds for now. 

  • Tandem Breastfeeding
    • Nursing a 5 month old who is just getting his first teeth is challenging. Nursing him when you need to be paying close attention so that you don't get bit is challenging. Trying to pay attention while trying to watch a one and a half year old is challenging. 
    • Nursing a 20 month old is challenging. He doesn't sit still and frequently gets lazy and gets teeth marks around my nipple from not having his mouth open wide enough. He wants to nurse all the time and definitely nurses as much as Luke. He's not patient. 
    • Arie still doesn't each much else. I'm just rolling with it and continuing to offer him some of everything that I'm eating. Sometimes he will take a bite or two
    • Luke got two teeth. Let the biting begin! I've been bit 4 times in the last 24 hours. If Luke doesn't want to nurse, and I try to to use that to calm him, I get bit. 
    • Arie is 21lbs and Luke weighed 16lbs 6oz last night. 
    • I'm still dairy and soy free. I've joined a weight loss competition and I hope to really be strict about limiting my desserts and snacks in the next 4 weeks. I'm also going to be careful to not limit my food intake so I don't affect my supply. 

  • Sleep
    • It feels like a good night is few and far between. 
    • It's really exhausting that Arie wakes up crying every single time he wakes up at night. I think we need to start cutting off water before bed time. 
    • Floor bed is still somewhat working. It really wouldn't be a big deal if Arie didn't wake up 356832157 times at night. 

  • Home life - House stuff
    • I'm debating between buying a carpet cleaner and paying a company. The cleaner is ever-so-slightly more than one cleaning from the company.
    • I bought the carpet cleaner. Kohls was having a sale and I had a 30% off coupon, so the cost of the machine was less than one cleaning. Easy decision there. 
    • My power steering pump has started acting up, so I'm driving the vw while Jack drives his jeep to work. 
    • We have so much wood to cut, it feels almost overwhelming. 
    • We need two of me and two of Jack to even make a dent around here. 
  • Going Out and About
    • Going out still isn't fun on my stressful days.  
    • I have been mastering the back carry with Arie with a woven wrap and using a short piece of woven wrap for Luke on my front. 



  • Postpartum Recovery
    • I'm still struggling with my back and hips, still seeing the chiropractor weekly.
    • I joined a weightloss challenge. I have plateaued a little but and I have 19 more pounds that I want to lose. 

  • Brotherly Love
    • They absolutely adore each other.
    • Arie has to be watched very closely because all he wants to do is put things in Luke's mouth. 
    • Luke loves watching everything that Arie does. I can't wait to watch them play with each other as Luke is able to sit up on his own and then move. 

  • Luke
    • Growing like a weed. Hes in 9 month clothes now. 
    • He's so happy all the time. 
    • He reaches and grabs for toys & holds things and chews on things. 
    • He's decided he loves my water cups and lunges toward my cup and straw. He also will grab at any dish or cup in your hands. 
    • His two bottom teeth have broken through. One is more than the other and he has the biggest smile!

    • He still loves to be worn. He's most content in a wrap. I like him best on my back because he can see what's going on and he isn't in my way. I cook and clean with him on my back. 





  • Arie
    • He is so smart and understands so much. 
    • He LOVES his cars and trucks. He loves to drive them and make engine sounds. 
    • He's talking more and more. 
    • Naps do not happen every day but he fell asleep playing for the first time ever last week. 
    • He's still not eating very much solid food and asks to nurse all day long. 
    • It's really hard to get a picture of him that's of his face and not blurry. 
















Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Foster Parenting

Our former foster son was officially adopted by the family who took him after us. 

💓

Middle of the night rocking

Lukey just fell asleep and I'm rocking, so I have a couple of minutes before I crawl back into bed. 

My phone memory is full, so I haven't bed taking as many pictures on my phone as I usually do, so I don't have many to share. 

I've been up since 1:15am with Arie, and then I couldn't get comfortable, and then Luke woke up for an hour. It's 3:51am now. Ahh mommy life :) 

We went to a La Leche League meeting today and it just reaffirmed that I want to apply for leadership. It was so nice to just hang out and encourage some new moms! 

After that, I took the boys to the chiropractor. I brought my woven wrap inside and tied Arie into the chair. I should have taken a picture, but I wanted it to be
 as quick as possible. Our chiro thought it was hilarious. :P

And Arie is up....

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Nap time musings

I was thinking about some things I cando to pinch pennies around here, and something quite elementary dawned on me... Keeping your house clean will save you money. 

I can't tell you how much stuff we lose or break because it's all over the place. Or, buy multiples of because I don't do laundry often enough. 

It is really my personal goal that by the end of the year, I will have really gotten control of my house and clutter and pared down my stuff considerably. 

The amount of kid and baby stuff in the house is getting overwhelming. I went through today and started the process of switching out Luke's 6 month clothes for 9 months. He's getting so so big!

During that process, I just couldn't believe how much STUFF there is. Toys and books for all the developmental stages from 0-2, clothing in every size. What if we had a girl? What if we do have a girl? At least there is only one sex of clothing here, if we had opposite sex children, I couldn't imagine... 

I think my kitchen being cluttered really plays into how often and how motivated I am to cook. 

I can not wrap my head around how much work it is having two kids like this. The laundry is constant & if I don't put it away right away, it quickly takes over and turns into the downward spiral of what's clean and what's dirty and has this shirt been washed yet and this shirt has been washed three times. 

Luke doesn't just sit contentedly in a bouncer or a swing for any length of time, not that he should be expected to, but, it makes housework extremely difficult. Especially with Arie trashing things faster than I can clean in between my cleaning and taking care of Luke. 

Today, making scrambled eggs for Arie took me 5x longer than it should between picking up Luke and carrying him in the ring sling and chasing Arie out of dog food and dog water and attempting to clean up those messes. 

I really don't know how to do this better. I remember how frustrating it was when Arie was this age because he just needed to be held and nursed. It makes sense, but it's so hard to come to grips with how difficult it is to keep things clean and normal. There are not enough hours in the day to get the toilets scrubbed and tubs and floors scrubbed and the laundry washed and put away and read Little Blue Truck 300 times. There's just not. 

I waited a long time to have these boys and I need to remember every day that it's enjoying the boys that is what is important. 

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Friends & cake

I baked a yummy chocolate cake and whipped up an amazing peanut butter frosting to go on top and this morning I hung out with my two girlfriends and our kids while eating that awesome cake. 


I could eat homemade cake every day. 

Monday, October 28, 2013

Soap making & stuff

This morning, my mom came over to help wrangle the boys while I made soap. I decided to make cinnamon vanilla orange soap this time. I love my homemade soap, it's surprisingly easy and it works so well. It's all Jack and I use for ourselves and the boys. No chemicals at all!

I'm looking around on craigslist trying to find an elliptical or treadmill affordable. I've been stuck for several weeks now and I think daily cardio would make a world of difference in my health and physical appearance. It would be great for Jack too. I think I would want to put it in the basement so that we can have an ice place to concentrate on working out while undistracted. 

I'm happy being a size 6, but I think I would look the best at a size 2 or 4 for my height. I need to really tighten my ab muscles back up. 

Speaking of a plateau... I made chocolate cake for our play date tomorrow. And I plan to make peanut butter frosting. :P 

Oh well. I've lost 40lbs since Luke was born, not too shabby. 


Thursday, October 24, 2013

Stepping back

I've written this same thing over and over in the past 6 years, but periodically I feel the need to step away from social media and refresh to just spend time not in the spot light and draw the blinds, essentially, and keep our life more private. I'm in the process of transferring my photos and then I plan to take a sabbatical from Facebook. 

Part of needing a break is because Facebook is not fulfilling at all. I crave relationships with my friends and family and FB leaves so much to be desired. Tone and intent is often distorted by reading things on a screen and conversations are much less personal when happening by typing online. 

I want more out of relationships than an occasional "like" on a picture or status and and even more seldom comment and conversation. 

I wonder when I'll learn or find a happy medium. I also wonder if I'm the only one who really feels this way about FB. 

Saturday, October 12, 2013

4 Month Update


  • Cloth Diapering
    • Diaper Laundry goes in the wash every morning or evening.  We go about 24-36 hours between diaper laundry.
    • Still using mainly prefolds and flats with covers.  We have 2 fitted diapers and a couple all in one diapers that we use overnight. 

  • Tandem Breastfeeding
    • Still going great
    • Arie still barely eats solids... but he's still gaining on his same curve that he was, so I'm going to just go with it and assume he's getting plenty of calories.  
    • Luke is still just as chunky as ever, also going a bit longer throughout the night between nursing.
    • Arie is about 20lbs 10oz and Luke is 15lbs 9oz. 
    • I'm still struggling with consuming enough food. 

  • Sleep
    • Some nights are significantly better than others. 
    • The last 2 nights, Arie has only woken up one time to nurse.  All of his teeth have erupted so maybe that was the breakthrough we needed until his next set of molars come in!
    • We moved our king sized bed onto the floor and dumped our huge bed frame/storage drawers in the guest bedroom and we moved a twin size bed onto the floor next to the king for Arie.  We have an enormous amount of sleeping area on the floor. 

  • Home life - House stuff
    • Now that the leaves are falling and the wood needs to be cut, we are busier than ever.
    • Slowly plugging along with getting things fixed here and there, but I think this winter will be filled with lots of indoor house projects.
    • We have a to-do list a mile long.
  • Going Out and About
    • Going out still isn't fun on my stressful days.  
    • I have been mastering the back carry with Arie with a woven wrap and using a short piece of woven wrap for Luke on my front. 




  • Postpartum Recovery
    • I'm still struggling with my back and hips, still seeing the chiropractor weekly.
    • I've lost 40lbs total since Luke was born.  90lbs total since Arie was born.  I am smaller than I have been since Jack and I got married.  Feels good.
    • I bit the bullet last weekend and went to American Eagle during a big sale. I bought two new pairs of jeans! Size 6!! 




  • Brotherly Love
    • They absolutely adore each other.
    • They've started to do this thing when I put Arie on my back and then put Luke up on one shoulder to lower him down into the wrap on my front, they laugh and laugh at each other. 
    • Arie loves to dance and jump around in front of Luke to make him laugh 


  • Luke
    • Growing like a weed. He's about to bust out of his 6 month clothes in length. 
    • He's so interested in the world. He's so alert and so active while he's awake. 
    • He reaches and grabs for toys & holds things and chews on things. 
    • He's got two little bumps on his bottom gum where teeth are thinking about popping through. 
    • He loves to be held and worn. He is 100% happiest on my lap or wrapped up. The great thing about him being  #2 is that I know this does not last at all and I'm perfectly content to use the snot out of my wraps and hold my baby close. 

  • Arie
    • He plays so independently now and completely explores his surroundings. 
    • He LOVES his cars and trucks. Every time we go to target, we pick up more for him and he always knows which are new to his collection. 
    • He's talking more and more. 
    • It's really hard to get him to slow down and nap. I still rock him to sleep and it's only successful if Luke is already sleeping on me when I start rocking Arie. 
    • He's still not eating very much solid food and asks to nurse all day long. 
    • It's really hard to get a picture of him that's of his face and not blurry. He's always on the move or really intensely concentrating on what he's doing. 

    Thursday, October 10, 2013

    Still sick.

    I can't even put in to words how crappy I feel. I can't remember the last time I had an ear ache and now both of my ears hurt. This is horrible. 

    I'm putting garlic oil in my ears and taking echinacea. The boys don't feel good either and I pray with all my heart that neither of them feels like I do. 

    Tonight has sucked. 

    I need to remember to be thankful every day for my good health. 

    Since Luke was born, I believe this is the second time I've been sick. I think I need to be much more diligent in my prayers for good health and taking my vitamins. Nursing two has definitely taken a toll on my body and especially sick, I am SO worn out. 

    I don't even want Jack to go to work tomorrow. I don't have words for this. 

    Wednesday, October 9, 2013

    Homeopathy

    I remember when my dad first started dating his wife... She was the first person I had ever heard of to be like that. I didn't know what organic was, I didn't know why one would use a crystal instead of deodorant. That was 17 years ago! Now, oh do I get it. (The difference between a 10 year old and a 27 year old, amiright?) 

    A few days ago, Jack came down with a cold. Then it got passed to Arie. And, now, me, and Luke seems to be slightly congested but is getting a verrrry mild version. (Gooooo breastfeeding!) 

    I have been using eucalyptus and peppermint essential oils in coconut oil and rubbing the kids. Jack, Arie and I have been eating raw honey (the real, good, thick stuff, from the apiary across the street from our house) with cinnamon and raw honey in hot tea. I've gargled salt water with cayenne for my sore throat. And, Jack, Arie and I have been taking Echinacea by the dropper full. 

    Jack is really on the mend. Arie slept a billion times better tonight than he did last night, which means we did too. I feel better this morning than I did yesterday. 

    I'm so thankful for God's medicine. There are no harmful or unintended side effects to eating a spoonful of honey mixed with cinnamon, but the amount of ails it helps is incredible. God knew what He was doing when he made creation! 

    My mom is coming over today and I am blessed with two sleeping boys with full bellies, so hopefully I can get a few more hours sleep. I have a super busy day planned... So much housework to catch up on while my mom is here. 

    Tuesday, October 8, 2013

    Sickies

    I think there should be a rule that moms don't get sick, ever. 

    Jack brought home a mild virus, just runny nose and general achiness. It has moved on to Arie, with the boobers everywhere. And, now, me. 

    I came down with a bad sore throat last night and still this morning. Jack is off to work and I'm up rocking both boys in the rocking chair. 

    Speaking of, this chair has more than paid for itself in hours of use. 

    I really wish I was sleeping with the boys instead of rocking. 

    Sunday, October 6, 2013

    19 months old

    I can't believe how fast time goes by. Arie is 19 months old. Closer to two years old than one. It's already October! 

    Next month Jack and I will be celebrating our 6th wedding anniversary. 

    It's too early to form a well thought out post, but I am just amazed by Arie every single day. He's an incredibly smart little dude and he is so much fun to watch and interact with. 


    Friday, October 4, 2013

    Arie's words lately

    Puppy
    Eyes 
    Bessie 
    Dixie
    Liz
    Matt 
    Mama 
    Dada
    Ball
    Bye bye 
    Nana
    Tractor
    Car
    Cat 
    Dog
    Dodge
    Goodnight moon
    Downstairs
    Bath
    Knee
    Elbow
    Pita
    Pizza
    Snack
    Baby 
    Ear
    Digger
    Puzzle
    Vrooooom 
    Ball
    Meow
    Moo
    Shirt
    Pants
    Shoes
    Socks
    Hat
    Up (for my wraps) 
    Apple 


    Friday, September 27, 2013

    Figuring out chores

    Every day things are a very big challenge with two small children. 

    My house is nowhere near as clean as I would like it, and as soon as I get one room clean, Arie comes running through with a bag of crackers that he stole out of the pantry, shaking it as he runs, leaving a trail of crumbs. 

    Luke is so much like Arie was, it's work to keep him asleep, so if I want him to sleep during the day, I had better not move a muscle while he sleeps on me.

    Since I learned how to wrap Luke on my back, that has gotten a little better. Luke will nap for a half hour to even an hour and a half. 

    Back wrapping has made my life a little bit easier, but it's still very difficult. 

    I can see already that this morning will be difficult. I have to boil our prefolds and that means hours of time standing in front of the stove. While I'm there, I pls to bake some bread and bake some banana bread too. I would like to bake something chocolate too. Maybe brownies, that's way less time consuming than cookies that I have to scoop and bake in intervals. Maybe a cake! I love chocolate cake. 


    Yesterday, I grocery shopped with both strapped on me. I have been shopping in the same grocery store for over three years now. You would think that these employees would know me by now and not be shocked every single time, but every week, it's like it's the first time they've ever seen anything like that. 

    I'm noticing a difference in my size now. I'm 7lbs below what I was when I got pregnant with Luke, 87lbs below my highest weight before I delivered Arie. 

    I bought some free weights to start toning the muscles and burning fat in my arms too. 

    I have 25lbs to go before I am at my long term goal weight. I'm actually not so much concerned about the weight number because I have always carried my weight differently than others. My goal size pants is a 2 or a 4. Preferably a 2. My size 8 jeans are too big on me and I haven't purchased any size 6 yet, but I may soon. I need there to be a little extra room inside the waistband to conceal carry. 

    Perfect family weekend.

    We had a perfect family weekend including getting my wedding rings sized and soldered, the cider mill, my parents visiting and helping with food and stacking wood. 

    I'm so thankful for help and so thankful for the time that Jack gets off each weekend that we get to spend together. It's crazy hard to have two kids this young and cloth diapering and breastfeeding both. But weekends like this really make up for the hard moments. 

     It's so hard to get a picture of both boys. 

    He really makes the most hilarious facial expressions. 


    Such a big boy :) 


    Had a play date on Friday morning with my best friend. I wish I got a picture of our older boys playing. It was so sweet. 

     
    After the play date, both boys refused to nap. I really wanted to clean up a bit, so I wrapped them both up and went downstairs to vacuum. 

    Saturday morning we were up bright and early to head to the jewelers for my rings and to a cider mill to meet a friend in town from California whose family happened to live in the same town as our jeweler! 
    Courtney & Lara were the best :) Barrett and Courtney's husband and family were pretty fabulous too! 


    Arie had a blast at the cider mill! 
    He was running all over the place and he couldn't believe that there were two tractors for him to see up close and touch. He kept running back and forth between them. 





    Arie also got to try cider & a donut, which I think he thought were fabulous. The donuts had milk in them so I just had some cider. 

    This was the best day for Arie, ever. 


    After the cider mill, we picked up my rings. Success!


    After we got home, both boys stayed sound asleep for more than an hour. 
    Jack and I hung out by the truck with the dogs, waiting for the boys to wake up. 


    I don't think we have taken a picture with just Jack and I since Arie was born. 

    After the boys woke up, we picked a bunch of apples from the tree in the yard. Made some apple sauce with my mom. 



    Things were quiet, and we looked up to discover this.


    Then today we went to Target to pick up some cleaning supplies and bought the boys a new puzzle and some new hot wheels.