Saturday, April 30, 2016

Right There...

Here passie was right there... but this beautiful baby girl opted for her thumb.

 

Friday, April 29, 2016

This Is Why...

When the Denver Broncos earned a spot in this year's Super Bowl, it was an exciting two weeks here in Colorado leading up to the Big Super Bowl 50 to see what would happen.  Frequently throughout those two weeks, I would be talking to friends and family across the country and nearly everyone wanted to discuss, at least a little, the Denver Broncos and their upcoming Super Bowl game.

The conversation was often some version of the same...
Them:  Hey, how about those Broncos!
Me: Yeah, we're pretty excited, talk about a great defense.
Them: Yeah, but Cam Newton's pretty impressive... we'll see how it goes.
Me: Who are you cheering for?
...
and this is where the conversation changed and came one of three responses
...
Their Response A: Definitely the Broncos.  I really like Peyton Manning.
Their Response B: I don't really care, but I like Peyton Manning, so I guess I'd kind of like to see Denver win for his sake.
Their Response C: I'm cheering for Carolina... but I really like Peyton Manning and so if Denver won, I would be happy for him.
Their Response D: I'm cheering for Peyton.  Who is he playing again? 

I was amazed at the absolute unity I heard far and wide regarding support for Peyton Manning heading into Super Bowl 50.

I have always liked Peyton Manning.

When I was in 7th grade, #1 Michigan beat #7 Washington State and was voted National Champions for the year 1997.  This was back when the National Champions were decided by vote, not by playoff and championship games.  One pole voted Michigan as Champions... the Coach's pole voted Nebraska Champions... because their coach was retiring.

Nebraska played Tennessee in a Bowl game that year, and Peyton Manning was the University of Tennessee quarterback.  I was at a sleepover with friends during that Nebraska v. Tennessee game, and I spent the whole sleepover cheering for Tennessee and Peyton Manning in the hopes that they would upset Nebraska and Michigan would become the undisputed National Champions for 1997.  Tennessee lost the game, but I cheered for and followed Peyton Manning from that day one.  There was something special about that quarterback. 

Now, fast forward 18 years (WOW!) and every conversation I have with people from all around the country reiterates that there really was something special about that quarterback.

In this day and age when Americans do not agree on ANYTHING -- when we have become not only so disagreeable, but so disrespectful toward one another... here is a man who does not fit the mold.  Maybe everyone I spoke with was not cheering for the Denver Broncos, but everyone was cheering for Peyton Manning.

What a testament to the character of this man.

I recognized this back in February when he (and the Broncos) won Super Bowl 50... and then a few weeks later when he announced his retirement, but I still didn't know exactly why it was everyone wished Peyton well.

Then, yesterday, I saw a commercial and I realized that this is why he is beloved by so many and why, even opposing fans, continue to think of him with favor and respect:


 Thank you, Peyton for being such a great man, a good role model, and someone I can, in good conscious, encourage the next generation to look up to.  Two-time Super Bowl Champion is not even top of your list of accomplishments when you consider that supporting you unified an entire country, and wishing you well in retirement still does.

#DearPeyton
#18

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Yum! Yum! Yum!

We always pray with Tracey before meals and they are quick, sincere prayers and are different every day.  We do not say a rhyme or the same poem every night.

We always thank Jesus for this food and for our family, or for this beautiful day... something like that.  It is different every day.

A few days ago as I finished the prayer with Tracey, I said "A-men," and Tracey, instead of "A-men," said, "Yum! Yum! Yum!"

So, I just rolled with it and said, "That's right!  Jesus, this food is delicious  Yum! Yum! Yum!  A-men."

Now, when we say prayer, we incorporate, "Yum! Yum! Yum!" into the prayer.

Sure, coming before our Creator and Savior to say, "Yum! Yum! Yum!" is a tad informal... but I don't know if I've ever heard a more sincere prayer.

She may not have fully realized it, but, in talking to God, our toddler expressed her sincere gratitude for her blessings, her dinner -- "Yum! Yum! Yum!"

What a beautiful sound from such a sincere little heart.

If only I, with a much more extensive vocabulary, could offer a prayer close to that sincere...

"Dear Jesus, Yum! Yum! Yum! A-men."
 

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Siblings


I did not grow up with siblings my own age, with my same parents, growing up in the same house, at the same time as I was.  In a lot of ways, I was truly blessed by being my parents' only child.  The fact that both of them were able to devote practically 100% of their love and attention on me for my entire life has certainly shaped me into the person I am today.


That being said, ever since I knew what a baby was, I wanted a sibling.  I never grew out of wanting a sibling, and to this day, it saddens me that I did not grow up with a sibling.  I have very dear friends, I am close with a few cousins, I have half-siblings who are very special, and I am a part of Chris' family and included with his siblings -- all of these are wonderful things, but I do not have my own siblings that I grew up with.



It is for these reasons that I absolutely love watching Tracey, Howard, and Caroline together.  The day-in, day-out sibling relations is what I never had.  The constant living together, playing together, napping together, eating together, talking together, learning together, same parents, all the time, this is the family -- whether you like it or not -- that is what I never had with siblings.


Praise God, Tracey never seemed to dislike her twin siblings.  She needed time to adjust to the major life change.  She needed time to adjust to Mama dividing her attention.  And, frankly, I think she needed to get to know them.



I think, as they are developing more personality, and as Tracey is growing in her role as a big sister, it is just now dawning on her that these are permanent playmates for anything she wants to do.




 Lately, she has been Doctor Tracey and Howard and Caroline are her patients -- and then never complain.  She listens to their hearts, looks in their ears, takes their temperatures, bandages their legs, and gives them shots, and they just gaze up at her with the biggest smiles.


I do not take these beautiful moments of sibling love for granted for a moment.  My heart swells every time I hear Tracey talking to Caroline and Howard.  I smile from ear to ear every time Caroline just beams when Tracey is giving her attention.  The void in my own heart of not growing up with siblings gets a little smaller when I hear Tracey climb in the car after school only to hear her say, "Hi Howlard!  Hi Airoline!  Its Tracey!"


I know there will be hard times ahead -- arguments and trouble sharing and copy-cats and tattle-tales... but all of that is a part of having siblings too, and, Lord, Willing, the result will be that our children grow up to consider their siblings the greatest gifts we have ever given them.

 

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Treasuring the Present: Hugging v. Holding


The other day I wanted to hug one of the babies -- either Howard or Caroline and I couldn't.  They are not even 4 months old -- they don't hug back.  I can hold both of the twins, but I cannot really hug them.

Tracey has just begun giving really good hugs.  I think a part of it is that when the twins were born, she started wanting to having some cuddle time.  Before she had two younger siblings, she could crawl into our arms any time -- with two new babies, she had to specifically ask for cuddle time when she wanted it, which she does.  Hubby has started doing a bit with her where he says, "I'm going to give you... a BIG... GIANT... HUG," in a big monster voice.  She has started hugging back and actually giving big giant hugs back.

When I realized that Howard and Caroline cannot hug me back yet... and Tracey has just started really hugging us back it made me realize how precious each of these stages are.  Right now, I can pick up Howard and/or Caroline any time and just hold them.  It will not be long before both of them want to be down on their own -- crawling, climbing, standing, walking, running...  Right now I get to hold them and it is amazing.  On days when I am at work, or on days when one sleeps more than usual, my arms ache to hold each one.

Tracey, on the other hand, is rarely held.  She is carried, she is lifted, she is tickled, she is hugged -- she is no longer held.  I love feeling her little arms around my neck as she has learned and is learning how to hug... but she is not a baby anymore.  I do not get to hold her the way I hold Howard and Caroline.

I feel very fortunate that currently, I have one baby to hug, and two babies to hold.

Monday, April 25, 2016

The Team

The team is officially in place.

I have to go back to work for a few days to finish up the year with students and the childcare team arrived yesterday.

Introducing the starting line-up... the amazing (and brave) All-Star team of:
Grammie

 
and Papa.

 
I am sure things will be fine without me... but I will breathe a huge sigh of relief when these days are in the books and I go back to being full-time Mama at home and the grandparents are reinforcements and second-string as opposed to varsity playing the whole game.

I'm sure Tracey will keep everyone in line and informed as to how I usually do things... the question is if Grammie and Papa will be able to understand her toddler talk.


Keep us in prayer, please.

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Hubby's Help

Me:  Any good ideas for my blog tomorrow

Hubby:  Ummmm...

Me:  Something, quick and easy.  Any good pictures on your phone?

Hubby:  The one I texted you the other day I really like.

Me:  Cool.

 Here it is -- people of all ages loving the hanging/mobile toys:



 

Saturday, April 23, 2016

Fun Family Day

Yesterday we had our first Fun Family Day as a family of five, and it was so much fun.  We have spent days together as a family of five... but this was a day out and about specifically devoted to family fun.

We started the day with the cleaning gal at our home... which always makes for a great day.  She cleaned while we left for our day out and when we came home, we had a beautiful clean and sparkling house.

We got out the door and drove an hour to Costco.  Hubby and I enjoyed the drive and Tracey got to watch a movie in the car.  All of the kiddos fell asleep on the drive, which allowed me to go in Costco for 30 minutes all by myself to shop while Hubby hung out in the car with our sleeping babies.

Then we went to the Rec Center near Costco where Tracey got to have fun with toddler gymnastics and then in the swimming pool.  Hubby and I used to live near Costco, when we first met and were first dating, so an old friend came to the Rec Center with her new little baby boy to visit with the twins and me while Hubby and Tracey swam.  Eventually, we will love for all of our family to swim together, but with three non-swimmers, two of whom cannot even sit up yet on their own, we just don't have enough hands get for everyone to be in the water safely.

After we left the Rec Center, we drove an hour in the other direction to Tracey's preschool and had our first ever parent-teacher conference, where we were the parents.  It was Hubby's first time meeting Tracey's teacher, and it was a lot of fun to hear how she thinks Tracey is doing and what we can be doing at home to continue to foster her education and development.  Then, we went down to Tracey's classroom and she got to show off and show Mama and Daddy, Howard, and Caroline what works she likes best at school.

Then we picked up a pizza on the way home.

At home, we enjoyed the pizza we brought with us, and then family Looney Tunes (the old fashioned kind).

After all the kiddos were in bed, Hubby and I continued the Family Day with a new app on our phone called Family Face Time, which is an app designed for families to play games together.  It is intended for two larger teams, but Hubby and I had a lot of fun adjusting the game so we could play against each other.

It was such a great day, and an event I hope we can continue with regularity.

We spend every day together, and every day with our kids is wonderful... but there is something very special about all of us packing up in the car and doing special activities together for the whole day.

It is a day when Mama and Daddy do not send emails or make phone calls, a day when Mama does not keep laundry going, a day when Mama and Daddy get to hold hands on the drive, a day when nursing happens in the car and the entire process involves a little bit of crazy for our whole crew to participate... but what a wonderful family activity and memory we create.

... And then, as I checked facebook for the last time last night, after our wonderful day, I saw this picture... and what a perfect, true cord it struck after our wonderful family fun day...


The truth is... it didn't really matter what we did yesterday... it mattered that we were all excited, we all did it together, Hubby and I talked about it all week and made sure that Tracey understood what a special fun day it was going to be for everyone, and then we followed through and we did it.  And tomorrow we will discuss how much fun it was and begin to plan for our next Fun Family Day and talk about what we should do next time. 

Friday, April 22, 2016

Too Much Love

There are very few situations where I find myself observing too much love... but when it comes to our toddler and things she loves, but has to treat carefully... like our animals and her siblings... sometimes she exhibits exactly that.

Can you see Lexie in this picture?



 Tracey is sharing her blanket with Lexie, tucking Lexie in to the basket where she's sleeping, and then giving her a big, sweet goodnight hug.  Lexie surprised me and tolerated this for quite a while.




Thursday, April 21, 2016

Such a problem solver

Howard has started to suck his thumb and I am complete torn about how I feel about it.



On the one hand, I am so proud of him being so resourceful and creative as to soothe himself -- he is such a problem solver.

On the other hand... I want that thumb out of his mouth!  I can take away the passie eventually, I cannot take away the thumb!

He does seem to prefer the passie... and tries to suck on the passie first... but if that fails, or if its unavailable, the thumb is a very reliable backup.




The cool thing is that I kind of think of sucking a thumb as traditional, resourceful, and old-school... and Howard James is named for his two grandfathers -- both traditional, resourceful, and old-school men.



... And, not to be out-done... when she heard that I was so impressed with Howard's problem-solving abilities, Caroline started sucking her thumb too.

 

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Just For Fun

Just for fun copied from a friend's blog: 

Girl's Fess Up Challenge

Bath or shower?
Depends on the day -- bath when time permits, shower most of the time 

Straight or curly hair? As straight as can be -- the ends hold a curl pretty well, but it is naturally straighter than sticks

 Favorite movie? The Sound of Music, Gone With the Wind, Steel Magnolias 

 Favorite holiday? Christmas 

Android or iPhone? Iphone 

Texting or call? Call -- or old fashioned snail mail letters -- remember with stamps and everything? 

Facebook or Twitter? Facebook

 Favorite type of food? Chinese, American, Southern, Italian

 Dream job? Mother and Homemaker... and getting paid for it (My ideal job would be to by a full time stay-at-home-mom... but since it's my DREAM job... I think I should be paid for it.

 Favorite pizza? Extra cheese, green pepper, onions from Papa Johns

 Favorite cake? Carrot or Red Velvet

Talking or fighting? Are these opposites... definitely talking... is fighting really the alternative to talking.  Wouldn't the alternative to talking be not-talking, or silent treatment? 

Night or day? Day, I think... unless you mean like night-owl or morning person.  Then, I would say night-owl.  Sorry, I'm overthinking these questions. 

Summer or winter? ALL SEASONS!  I always love the season I'm currently in, and I'm excited about the one to come.  Currently, I love Spring, and I'm getting excited about Summer... but I will be equally in love with Autumn and Winter when they arrive. 

Wine or whiskey? Wine... or Diet Coke 

Makeup or no makeup? Always makeup... and by makeup I mean mascara... just mascara.  My daily makeup is mascara, and my dressed up makeup is mascara, eye shadow, and lipstick.

Favorite TV show? Currently, Counting On (the Duggar Girls), or The Willis Family... of all time... maybe The Office or Gilmore Girls or I Love Lucy

 Hair up or down? Half-down-ish with a clip so it's out of my face... although I'm learning that a bun is very functional for staying home with the little ones

Jeans or leggings? Skirts

 Painted or none painted nails? Non-painted... an average of 360 days a year non-painted

 Favorite color? Purple with green as a runner-up... and purple and green as a great combination 

T-shirt or dress shirt? Dress shirt

 Flip flops or sneakers? Chacos

 Big purse or small? Diaper bag 

How many tattoos? Wouldn't you like to know... 

How many piercings? One in each earlobe 

Diamonds or pearls? Both... diamonds on my fingers and ears, pearls around my neck and/or ears 

Favorite animal? Little humans
 

 Rap or country music? Country

 Sports or couch? Both... I love playing sports although I don't get much opportunity during this season of life... so I like watching Sports on the Couch... see what I did there? :-D

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Treasuring the Present: My Ship


Technically my maternity leave ended a few weeks ago, and so I have been doing office work from home; however, my uninterrupted time at home ends this week.  Next week my parents will be here to run the ship while I finish up my time seeing students this Spring.

Recently I realized that I've hit a milestone of this life with three little ones -- a few months ago, I (theoretically) would have leapt at the chance to hand my three handfuls over to my parents and return to the job I do well, teaching students who are visually impaired.  Now, as I think about their coming and literally taking over while I am out of the house for hours at a time I can honestly say, I would rather they teach my students and I stay home with my children.

It has taken me nearly 16 weeks... and 10 of those by myself, but I really do have a routine here at home.  And yes, our laundry and dishes and vacuuming are a constant battle... or joke, however you choose to see it, and an extra pair of adult hands would be great... but Tracey, Howard, and Caroline and I have a really good system during the day when Daddy's at work.

We play, we learn, we eat, we sing, we dance, we read, we get excited for Daddy to come home, we go to preschool, we go to dance class, we sometimes see friends, we have good days and some harder days but we have a really good system -- FINALLY... just in time for me to change everything by heading off to work and handing the reigns over to my parents for a few weeks.

So... today I am treasuring that I am home with my three wonderful handfuls for the rest of this week, just the four of us.
I am treasuring that I really have created a system and routine and that no one on this planet knows my children better than I do.
And yes, I am treasuring that I have a job to return to... and even better, a job with the flexibility that I have could have such an extended maternity leave.
I am treasuring that, of all people, I will be leaving my children with the very best second-choice option (first choice being myself) -- my parents, their grandparents who love them to bits.
I am treasuring that our home really has become my ship... I run the show -- for better or worse or messy or tired, its my ship.
 

Monday, April 18, 2016

Lap Time

Our twins are absolutely amazing.  They are each a really great baby -- there are two of them, which is hard, but neither one of them is a "hard to handle baby."  We continue to be so fortunate.

Also, Tracey, as well, has adjusted really well to having younger siblings.  Yes, we had some hard weeks, but, Praise God, her difficulties were never directed at Howard or Caroline.

All of that being said, I am learning that each child needs daily "lap time."

For as wonderful and easy-going as each Howard and Caroline are, there is a time of each and every day when each baby wants to be held.  It's rarely at the same time (Praise God!), but at some point of every day Howard... and then Caroline will not tolerate being set down and absolutely insists on being held.

By the same token, pretty much every day, there is a time when Tracey will come over to me and ask to be picked up.  Sometimes I'm holding or feeding a baby at that time, and so she says, "Baby down," "Ow-lard down," "Airoline down."  At some point of each and every day, she wants to be held and cuddled.

I have started to think of this as lap time -- time when each child needs to be on my lap/in my arms -- or in Hubby's arms, but most days the need occurs when he's at work, and the more it occurs, the more I have noticed that it is not just the children.  Lexie will frequently find the one moment that I'm sitting down without a child in my lap -- and she will take that opportunity to lay in my lap.

Lloyd doesn't fit in my lap, but he, too, tries to curb out a little of my time for one-on-one petting.

All of our dependents require daily physical contact from me and/or Hubby, which is such a cool thing to realize!  All three of our babies don't care if I've run the vacuum, how fancy the meal is on the dinner table, or if I even got a shower that day -- they care that they were given individual, physical attention when they asked for it and that they felt loved.  Being the Mom and Dad is so amazing when you can make your child happy simply by holding him or her!  There may be days when I really don't get anything done -- but all three children have had their needs met -- not just fed and cleaned, but have felt physically secure, loved, and cherished, and so my day was a success.

Then, the more I thought about this daily lap time that is happening in my life, the more I realized that Hubby and I need this in our marriage just as much as our children need it from us -- obviously not being picked up or sitting on each other's lap... but that end of the day physical contact -- a hug -- to just touch base and reaffirm our love and unity in this crazy, wonderful journey of life.

Saturday, April 16, 2016

TWO Smiles!!!

Yesterday was a big day -- A VERY Big Day!!!

I FINALLY captured a picture with my two adorable twins... and their two amazing smiles!!!  They have both been smiling for weeks, but I have not been able to snap both smiles in the same picture... until yesterday.


Life is good!

Friday, April 15, 2016

Laundry

In this family, helping with laundry chores begins early...





 

Thursday, April 14, 2016

The Wifey

A few days ago, I posted what I thought my Hubby's answers would be to twenty questions... and he said I did very well -- there was just one answer he would have tweaked a little.

Tonight he is answering the same questions for me:

1. She’s sitting in front of the TV, what is on the screen? 
Her new Netflix show... "Joey and Something" or Gilmore Girls.

2. You’re out to eat, what kind of dressing does she get on her salad? 
None - no dressing, she likes her salad with no dressing... except for Cesar salad

3. What’s one food she doesn’t like? 
LOL -- lots, anything creamy, cold, and cold cheese

4. You go out to eat and have a drink. What does she order?
Um... now that she's always breastfeeding, a diet coke, but if she wasn't, some kind of martini.

5. Where did she go to high school?
Mona Shores

6. What size shoe does she wear?
6.5

8. What is her favorite type of sandwich?
Um... grilled cheese?

9. What would this person eat every day if she could?
Anything with sugar -- at the moment, dark chocolate salted carmels

10. What is her favorite cereal?
It depends on whether or not she's pregnant and her phase in life -- it could be Honey Nut Cheerios, It has been Fiber One... or Golden Grahams

11. What would she never wear?
Jeans or a really low cut top or Daisy Dukes

12. What is her favorite sports team?
 Michigan Wolverines

13. Who did she vote for?
 Me to pop the question

14. Who is her best friend?
 Me... or her mom -- really, her mom.

15. What is something she does that you wish she wouldn’t do?
Park the van too far on one side of the garage, or complain

16. What is her heritage?
 Scandinavian and Mid-western and Red-headener

17. You bake a cake for her birthday, what kind of cake?
 Carrot Cake

18. Did she play sports in high school?
Yes, tennis, debate and synchronized swimming

19. What could she spend hours doing?
Talking to me, driving even when she's been awake for 68 hours... there's nothing that she really does anymore for hours because she doesn't have hours... I guess half pay-attention to Gilmore Girls...

20. What is one unique talent she has?
 Playing the harp

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Complete Opposites or Perfectly In Sync

Howard and Caroline are either complete opposites or perfectly in sync... I haven't decided.

In the womb, the doctors always commented on how in-sync they were -- their sizes were almost identical, their movements were simultaneous, their heart-beats would accelerate and decelerate in unison... they were very unified twins.

Now, at three-and-a-half months, I can't decide if they are complete opposites or perfectly in sync.

Caroline pretty much sleeps all morning -- I have to awaken her for all feedings from about 7am-2pm when Howard is ready to eat.  Then, she is awake all evening wanting to be a part of the activity, wanting to be entertained, and, as the evening progresses, she wants to be held.

Howard, on the other hand, is wide awake in the morning from about 7am-2pm, wanting to be a part of the activity, wanting to be entertained, and, as the morning progresses, he wants to be held.  Then, he falls asleep in the evening and needs to be awakened for the evening feedings leading up to bedtime.

Really, they are complete opposites... but in another way, they are perfectly in sync, in that only one baby usually wants to be held at a time -- Howard in the morning and Caroline in the evening.

They really are team players.

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Their Names

In my opinion, Hubby and I have a really special marriage.  I love being his wife and I love the way we love and support each other.  We make such a great team... and our life really is a beautiful relationship of teamwork.

There are some things that we have done that I think are a little different than our peers or other married couples, and, obviously, for everyone, to each their own... but I love the way we have done things.

One thing we've done, which I just love involves the names of our children -- not only do we not tell anyone the names of our children before they are born, but we really do not decide until we meet them.

This is made a little more easier by the fact that we keep our baby's gender a surprise until the baby is born.  Hubby's first job as Daddy to that baby is announcing to me, and the whole room if our new baby is a boy or a girl.  I love that I have heard his voice making these announcements for all our children.  For each, his voice has had such joy -- he often gets choked up, and the sound of his voice is the most excited that I've ever heard him.  Each and every time, his voice has such a combination of joy, surprise, delight, pride, relief... its almost impossible to describe, and it is a tone of his voice, I absolutely love to hear.

Coming into each birth of our children, we really have not decided on their names.  In fact, we don't really talk about names much during the pregnancy -- a few times when it is just the two of us, and all of those discussions remain unresolved.  The discussions usually begin around four months, and end with our realizing we will never agree on names... then we revisit the topic again every few months.  Finally, in my last month of pregnancy we have a really great conversation where we come away feeling about 95% sure of the names of the baby we're about to meet... but we have to meet him or her before we're sure.

Because we're not sure of the gender... and we haven't fully decided on the name, we don't tell anyone the baby's name before he or she is born.  I absolutely love that secret that our marriage has shared, now three times.  We are very close to our moms, and I will say, they have each had some idea of names that we have liked, and might possibly be in the running... but we always tell them, they will have to wait to meet their new grandchildren to find out.

And the truth of the matter is, that even when I am days away from giving birth, and I'm running a few possible names through in my head, we really never DECIDE on the name until we have met and held our new baby.

Maybe we think we have a first name... maybe we've tossed around a few middle names... but never know our child's name until we actually NAME our child.

As a result, I don't think we've ever told our families "IT'S A GIRL!" or "IT'S A BOY!" -- instead we introduce them to their new grandchild and they learn, from the name, if its a boy or a girl.

We introduced them to Tracey Ann... and then two years later, to Howard James and Caroline Christine.

Naming our children has not come easily to us... we don't always agree on which names belong in our family, which is why it has been the coolest process of husband and wife to discuss and compromise over months of pregnancy...and take our time deciding on a name... only to culminate in that beautiful birth day when we tell our child his or her name... and he or she is the first one to hear it.

One of us literally says to each other, "Is it Tracey Ann?" "Is it Howard James?" "Is it Caroline Christine?" -- like it is an old friend one of us doesn't quite recognize... and the other confirms -- yes, this is Tracey Ann, Howard James and Caroline Christine.

Naming our children, together, without anyone else's input or knowledge has been one of the absolute coolest parts of our marriage and beginning to our journey as parents.

Monday, April 11, 2016

10 On 10

10... well, 11 Pictures Snapped on the 10th of April

We went to church in the morning, but I didn't get any pictures while we were there... once we arrived home, everyone napped:


I was able to write and send a card I've been putting off

Our little crazy girl... having fun before lunch

"Hi Sis!"

These two are awesome!

We had family time in the evening and watched America's Funniest Home Videos together... here's a selfie of some of us -- clearly I need to work on my selfie skills

Tracey Ann snapped a selfie

That moment when you think we got a cute family picture... and discovered our toddler was making an angry face


These videos are pretty entertaining...

My log of feedings for Howard and Caroline (How and Car) -- the time, their side of nursing (Left or Right), and if their diaper was wet or messy.

End of day bath

 What a great family day.

Sunday, April 10, 2016

My Hubby

I saw this on facebook, and I thought it was cute.
Here’s a chance to see how well I really know my Hubby.

1. He’s sitting in front of the TV, what is on the screen? 
If he's alone then a hunting show, a home improvement show reality show or a drama that I don't like.

2. You’re out to eat, what kind of dressing does he get on his salad? 
Blue cheese maybe?

3. What’s one food he doesn’t like? 
Vienna Sausages

4. You go out to eat and have a drink. What does he order?
Iced tea

5. Where did he go to high school?
Central?  I'm not sure, but in St. Louis, that's the first question everyone asks.

6. What size shoe does he wear?
Large?

8. What is his favorite type of sandwich?
Reuben?

9. What would this person eat every day if he could?
King crab legs

10. What is his favorite cereal?
 Golden grahams

11. What would he never wear?
A sweater over a collared shirt

12. What is his favorite sports team?
 St. Louis Cardinals

13. Who did he vote for?
 Secret ballet

14. Who is his best friend?
 His wife... second would be his brother

15. What is something he does that you wish he wouldn’t do?
Procrastinate

16. What is his heritage?
 American... German way back

17. You bake a cake for his birthday, what kind of cake?
 Pie

18. Did he play sports in high school?
No, he waited tables.  He played football in middle school.

19. What could he spend hours doing?
 Playing with our children... playing Clash of Clans (unfortunately), and hunting.

20. What is one unique talent he has?
 He is really good at being married to me, which is not easy.  He's also an amazing cook.