Happy Birthday, Andrew!

Happy 26th birthday to my little brother!!

(and no, he doesn’t play t-ball… he was practicing with his 3 year old son)

Happy 50th Birthday, Mom!!

WE LOVE YOU!!

 

Jacob and Grandma

Lucas and Grandma

Apples, Apples Everywhere

Today we are going apple picking with some family and friends so I thought I would share a picture of Jacob at the apple orchard last year. He was only one and had a lot of fun gathering the apples!

Anyone have any yummy apple recipes they want to share?  :)

First Day of High School

Yesterday was my little sister’s first day of high school.

I took pictures in front of the front door before she left for school, just like my mom used to do.

Check out the shoes she rocked!

***********

Any advice you mothers out there have for my little sister as she embarks upon her high school journey?

Luke’s 1st Birthday (In Pictures)

Wearing his "birthday boy" shirt

At the Farmer's Market

Crawling around the splash pad

Eating his birthday cake

After cake... time for a bath!

Today My Baby Turns One!

One year ago I gave birth to my youngest son.

***

Lucas and mommy

***

Lucas Nathaniel

***

Baby fingers

***

Baby toes

***

Happy 1st Birthday, Lucas Nathaniel!

Wordless Wednesday: Babies (and a Giveaway)

Lucas and his cousin, Maddie

I have linked this picture to: Wordless Wednesday Home
5 Minutes for Mom ~ Go Graham Go! ~ Jolly Mom ~ Look What Mom Found… ~ Mom of 3 Girls ~
Momspective ~ MomStart ~ Two of a Kind… ~ Frosted Fingers

***********

Today’s Giveaway:

One box of All Natural Boudreaux’s Butt Paste

This stuff works awesome (really)! I always used generic diaper rash cream in the past and the rashes always took a few days to go away. This past week Lucas had a diaper rash and when I used the Boudreaux’s “butt paste” his rash was gone by the next day.

I never knew there was such a huge difference in the quality of the diaper rash creams that were on the market so I always just bought the one that was the cheapest or one that I had a coupon for. Won’t be doing that anymore….

How to enter:

Leave a comment telling me your favorite thing about babies.

Is it their smell, the softness of their skin, their innocence? My favorite thing about babies is that they are so cuddly!

If you don’t need the diaper rash cream but still want to leave a comment that’s ok too (just let me know).

Giveaway ends July 23rd at 11:59pm.

(Disclosure: Blairex Laboratories, Inc. sent me one box of Boudreaux’s Butt Paste to try out and one to giveaway to my readers. All thoughts and opinions are my own. I was not required to give a positive review about this product.)


Happy Father’s Day, Sinisa!

Sinisa is an awesome father and I have millions of pictures I love of him with Jacob and Lucas but I narrowed it down to my top 10 favorite pictures of the past couple years:

His first day of being a daddy

Sinisa becomes a daddy of two

First Father's Day (2008)

Jacob turns one

Daddy and Jacob

Jacob sleeping on daddy's shoulder

Having fun at the Pumpkin Patch

Daddy and his boys

Daddy holding Lucas in the hospital

Resting with daddy

Happy Father’s Day, Dad!

Jacob and I with my dad last Father's Day

My dad with Morgan at her Junior High graduation

Grandpa holding Lucas for the first time

Grandpa and Maddie at Easter

Dad with Brock before Prom

Grandpa with Camden

To a great Father and Grandpa… Happy Father’s Day! We love you!

Happy Birthday, Jen! (Giveaway)

Jennifer and my brother "back in the day"

Mommy Jennifer

Auntie Jennifer

Happy Birthday to my Sister-In-Law :) Hope you have a fabulous day today!

Giveaway:

Ever have a birthday or other celebration where you forgot to get a card? I have! To ensure that you are never in that predicament again (well for at least the next 12 occasions) I am giving away a Buttoned Up Last Minute Greeting Card set.


How to enter to win:

Easy! Just leave a comment wishing Jennifer a Happy Birthday :)

Giveaway will end on July 19, 2010 at 11:59pm.

(Disclosure: I won this product as part of a bundle pack a few months ago. I am not being compensated in any way for talking about this product or offering one as a giveaway.)

Happy Father’s Day, Andrew!

I know it’s not Father’s Day yet but I wanted to wish my brother a Happy Father’s Day! Here are some of my favorite pictures of him with his children:

***

***

***

Wordless Wednesday: Graduation (& Giveaway)

Morgan graduates 8th grade!

I have linked this picture to: Wordless Wednesday Home
5 Minutes for Mom ~ Go Graham Go! ~ Jolly Mom ~ Look What Mom Found… ~ Mom of 3 Girls ~
Momspective ~ MomStart ~ Two of a Kind… ~ Frosted Fingers

Today’s Giveaway:

A “Sisters” picture frame

To enter to win:

Tell me one thing that makes your sister great.

OR

Tell me about a person who has positively impacted your life.

**************

This giveaway will end July 9, 2010 at 11:59pm.

Happy Birthday, Amber!

Today is my sister’s birthday so I just wanted to wish her a Happy Birthday!! :)

Jacob’s 2nd Birthday

Jacob turned two years old on Friday, June 4th. We celebrated his birthday by spending the morning playing at home and after nap went to an indoor play place and a train themed restaurant for dinner. Jacob and Lucas had a lot of fun and I wanted to share some pictures from the day.

Jacob

Lucas

Jacob trying to blow his train whistle

Jacob was excited to see the food train coming towards him

Jacob's birthday cupcakes w/ Thomas on them

Enjoying the frosting and his new Thomas ring

Jacob's birthday shirt said "Choo Choo I'm Two!"

Tell me “seasoned” moms… what did you think of this age? Would you call them the “Terrific Twos” or “Terrible Twos”? Jacob has tons of energy and is pretty rambunctious but I am thinking this year is going to be terrific anyways :)

Happy Second Birthday, Jacob Thomas!

Two years ago today I gave birth to my first child.

Last year he turned one.

And today he is two.

I love him so much and I’m proud to be his mother! Happy 2nd birthday, Jake!

Wordless Wednesday: Toy Story Birthday Party

Here are some fun pictures from my nephew’s third birthday party this past weekend:

The Birthday Boy

The Birthday Boy's Sister (Maddie)

Jacob

Lucas

Camden And His Cousins In Their Matching Shirts... Love It!!

For A Special Three Year Old…

Happy 3rd Birthday to my nephew, Camden!! Look at the pictures of this cutie:

Newborn

One Year Old

Two Years Old

Three Years Old

And Happy Birthday to Camden from your cousins, Jacob and Lucas.

Camden, Jacob, and Lucas- June 2009

Camden, Jacob, and Lucas- May 2010

WE LOVE YOU AND HOPE YOU HAVE A FANTASTIC DAY TODAY!!!

Happy Birthday, Uncle Brock!

Today is my little brother’s 19th birthday so I wanted to wish him a very happy day! :)

Brock and Jacob

Brock before Prom

Brock and Lucas

I just have to brag on my brother for a minute because I am SO proud of him. He is such a bright young man and is at a prestigious university majoring in pre-med and just finished his first year with a 3.8/4.0 grade point average.

He is also a very giving person and in high school volunteered weekly at a hospital. This summer he is planning to go on a trip with a medical brigade and they will be setting up small clinics to diagnose and treat patients at no cost. Each student is expected to raise $1,500 for the trip and I figured his birthday post was a perfect opportunity to ask for your support. A donation to the Global Brigades would be a great birthday gift, don’t you think? :) Also, if you are unable to support him financially, would you please lift his group up in prayer? Here is the link to the website, including a letter from him. Thank you!!

Happy Mother’s Day!

I just wanted to wish you all a Happy Mother’s Day! I hope whatever you spend the day doing you make sure to take time out for yourself.

To my own mom, who took both boys so that I could sleep in, thank you. I appreciate the nights that you watch them so that I can get some rest and “me” time.  I know I don’t say it enough but I love you and am very thankful for everything you do for me.

To my stepmom, resting in Heaven, I love you and I can’t wait to see you someday.

Motherhood

Kristen from We Are THAT Family is asking bloggers to post a picture that defines motherhood for us. This picture immediately came to mind:

It’s a picture of Jacob meeting and holding his little brother, Lucas, for the very first time. I still tear up every time I see this picture because other than both their births, it is one of the sweetest memories I have.

When I had Jacob I could never imagine loving anyone as much as I loved him. When I was pregnant I worried that I wouldn’t love this second child as much as I loved my first born. I couldn’t imagine having enough love in my heart and at the time thought that having two children would mean I’d have to love my first child less.

It was in the time after the birth of Lucas, when I looked at his face and especially when I held both children in my arms, that I realized that it was possible to love both of my children with 100% of myself. This picture is a great reminder of that moment.

Slow Down

As I sit here and think about all the things that I have to do this weekend I have been hearing “slow down”. Maybe it’s God’s voice. Maybe it’s my brain telling me that if I overload it with one more thing it will explode. Maybe it’s my body telling me it needs to relax….

Whatever it is, I’m listening and I’m obeying the voice.

*******************************************************************

I will not hurry to go anywhere.

I will not do a load of the laundry that’s piling up.

I will not get online and work on blogging.

I will not talk with friends on twitter or facebook.

I will not notice that dust bunny under the hall table.

I will not clean up the boys room while they play.

What will I do?

I will spend all morning playing with and loving my boys.

I will spend all morning cherishing every smile and giggle.

I will spend all morning watching my oldest attempt to count his fingers and my youngest as he starts to walk.

I will spend all morning thanking God for the wonderful gifts He has given me.

What will you spend the morning doing?

**********************************************************************************************

This post is linked up to Amy’s Finer Things “Finer Things Friday” because slowing down is a finer thing :)

Happy Birthday To The Man I Love

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, SINISA!

Lucas Reads The Funnies

Enjoy your weekend!

Why I Love Being A Parent

This week I am participating in Top 3 Thursday, a meme from Tamara and Elizabeth.

This week’s question is:

What are your Top 3 favorite things about being a parent?

3. Hugs and Kisses: There is nothing better than a slobbery kiss and a giant hug (except maybe one with just a little less saliva and maybe some clean hands would be nice). I think that once Jacob and Lucas can tell me that they love me that will rank up in my top three things, too.

2. Watching them grow up and learn new things: As a past preschool teacher I have known the satisfaction one gets when watching a child do something for the first time. It’s even greater when it’s something that I have taught them. Greater yet is watching your own child do something new. The pride that I feel when one of the boys do something new is overwhelming and I want to share it with everyone that will listen. If you are my twitter or facebook friend you know I was so proud of my toddler for going to the bathroom on the toilet because I announced it. Yes, I am THAT mom… I swore I would never be one of “those moms” but turns out I am!

1. “The feeling”: I’ve heard it said that no (humanly) love is greater than a mother’s love and that you can’t know how strong a mother’s love is until you are a mother yourself. No explanation here because if you are a mother you know the feeling I am talking about and if you aren’t a mom there are no words that I could use to describe this feeling!

So those are my top 3 reasons I love being a mom. If you have a post make sure to visit Elizabeth and Tamara and link up. If you do not have a blog I would love for you to leave a comment below telling me why you love being a parent. Regardless, feel free to leave me some comment love :)

Finer Things Friday- Our First Family Walk

Today I am joining Amy in her “Finer Things Friday” meme at her blog.

Today we took our first walk as a family of four. It was chillier than I thought it would be but it was the perfect way to spend the late afternoon. It’s a fine thing when I get to come home from a long day at the office and spend time with the ones I love in the beautiful weather that God has given us.

Jacob and Daddy

Jacob and Lucas

Wordless Wednesday- Today Would Have Been Her Birthday

Today is my mom’s birthday and I miss her.

Epilepsy took her away from us.

If you would like to donate directly to the Epilepsy Foundation of Greater Chicago you can go here

Things My Mom Taught Me About Life

My (step)mom dealt with Epilepsy for almost 9 years before being taken away in her sleep on June 17, 2009. In the almost 20 years that she was in my life she taught me a lot. Tomorrow she would have been 54 and in celebration of her life I wanted to share 10 things that I learned from her about life.

1. Spend time with God and read your Bible– My mom would sit for hours each day reading her Bible, praying, journaling to God, and seeking His will in her life.

2. Be positive– Having epilepsy meant that she had seizures. She didn’t know when the seizures would happen so her doctor told her that she could not drive. Once she went at least 6 months without a seizure she would be allowed to drive again. Every time I talked to her she told me that she would be driving soon. For over nine years she told me that she was done having seizures. For over 9 years she kept a positive attitude and believed that she would be able to drive in her near future (I really think she’s up in Heaven cruising around).

3. Always get a second opinion– When my mom was diagnosed with epilepsy she didn’t just take a doctor’s word for it. She saw specialists and got a second opinion. Her second opinion was medical but I think sometimes we need a fresh perspective and a second opinion from someone outside of ourselves.

4. Don’t forget what is important– My mom didn’t worry about being the best cook. She didn’t worry about keeping a spotless house. She didn’t worry about making her life look perfect. She remembered what was important in her life- God and those she loved- and that is what she focused on.

5. Be a good friend– My mom loved her friends. She spent time with them, she helped them and most of all she prayed for them.

6. Hug and kiss your children (even if they think they are too old for it)- My mom was a hugger and a kisser. You didn’t come or go in her house without them and she didn’t take no for an answer.

7. Tell others you love them– Don’t just assume that someone knows you love them. Tell them how much you do.

8. We touch more people than we know– At my mom’s wake I was amazed to see all the people she had touched in some way. She had left an impact on so many and I am sure that even she did not realize how many people she blessed with her love. Her kind words and smile made people feel welcome and cared for.

9. Take lots of pictures– As a mom I am always taking pictures of my children but am not in many of them myself. My mom was always taking pictures and more than that she was always including herself in the pictures. She didn’t realize it at the time but those pictures would be lasting memories of her short life and as a mom I want to make sure that my children always have pictures of me to remember me by.

10. Realize we won’t always understand God’s plan for our life– We don’t know why my mom got sick in the summer of 2000. We don’t know why she was taken away from us so abruptly in 2009. I do know though that God sees the big picture. God has a plan for our lives and sometimes we “must go through the valley to stand upon the mountain of God” (to quote Third Day).

(To read more Top Ten Tuesday posts visit www.ohamanda.com)

Happy 14th Birthday, Aunt Morgan!

Jacob and Aunt Morgan

Today my little sister turns 14 years old! I wanted to include part of her birth story which I wrote years ago in junior high when she was born as a preemie weighing only one pound 14 ounces.

This is the story of the miracle baby:

“Alicia! Wake up,” my dad uttered, as he shook me violently.

“Huh? What?” I replied sleepily, for I had just been awakened from my quiet and peaceful slumber. As I opened my eyes slowly, adjusting to the bright light in my bedroom, I saw what seemed to be a look of concern on my father’s normally composed face.

“Wake up! Hurry! We have to leave!” my dad shouted, in a manner that was anything but calm.

“What happened?” I asked as I sat up in bed, glancing at my clock quickly, “It’s four in the morning!” A feeling of fear crept over me.  There was something terribly wrong. Why else would I have been waken up at the crack of dawn on a school day, the afternoon of which we were to leave for a ski trip? I feared the worst, someone had died. However what came next could never have been prepared for.

“Mom’s water broke. Hurry!” my dad shouted, as he rushed out of the room to wake my two younger brothers up. For a second, I sat there shocked- water broke, what!? I did not comprehend, at the time, the importance of what my dad had just informed me of. Then, all at once, the realization hit me like a bucket of ice water– the baby was coming, and three months early!

Panic overtook me like a tornado. What would happen if we didn’t arrive at the hospital in time? What would we do if my mom started giving birth in the car? And the scariest question of all– what if the baby died? What if… I had never experienced panic like this before. I didn’t know what to expect. All of the above questions that flew through my head seemed surprisingly real to me; like they could happen and there was a very slim chance that they wouldn’t. I blindly threw on the clothes I had picked out the night before; and within a minute, had slammed our family’s van door shut, enclosing five sleepy and frightened family members within.

My mom sat weeping in the front seat, fearing that the baby– the baby that had grown and formed inside of her for six months– would arrive too soon to be saved. Longing to comfort her, but not knowing how to, I sat there speechless, staring out into the dense fog of the early morning. Glancing into the rearview mirror, I noticed a tear running down my dad’s cheek. I had never seen him cry before. “Why us? She can’t come! She’ll die!” repeated itself over and over in my disarrayed mind. It seemed to take all eternity to drive to the hospital.

As soon as we had shuffled into the hospital, my mom was wheeled away in a wheelchair to the critical care ward; while my two brothers and I were led, like scared puppies, to a small, gloomy room that reeked of puke and contained nothing besides a television and a few couches. After giving us some apple juice and graham crackers the nurse left us all by ourselves. By the routine manner in which the nurse conducted herself we were obviously not the first family of children to come through those emergency room doors seeking something more from her than she could give– an answer. With nothing to do, we sat there staring at the television screen at a news program that we weren’t interested in.

My youngest brother, who was five at the time, behaved like a typical five year old. That child could not sit still for a second, and I didn’t blame him either. I, as a seventh grader, found it very hard to sit there, uncertain of what was to become of the baby. I could just imagine what was going on in my younger brother’s head. When I proposed a walk, it was greatly appreciated. Searching for a water fountain, because we had drained the last of our juice over an hour before, we ended up in the area of the hospital designated for premature babies. I looked in one of the windows and saw babies in plastic boxes (which I later learned were called incubators). They had dozens of wires sticking out of their doll-like figures. The babies were jaundice, shriveled up, and not much larger than my hand. Their ribs were protruding out of their skin, their arms and legs as fragile as sticks, and their stomachs blown up, like balloons about to burst. Doctor, nurses, and parents were huddled around the babies like guardian angels and the parents looked as if they had been deprived of sleep for days.

That was what was to become of my little sister when she arrived into the world, three days later, weighing only one pound and 14 ounces. She was so small, in fact, that she had to be put on steroids to help her grow faster. So small that the first time she wore clothes was 23 days after her birth, and even then she was wearing doll clothes. So small that she swam in diapers made for newborns. My mom visited Morgan twice every day. While my mom was at the hospital, my brother and I became regulars at the public library, going there directly from school every day and staying for a couple hours each day. My brothers and I went to the hospital often, but because we were not allowed in the premature nursery, were not allowed to hold her, feed her, change her diapers, or help with any of the other baby tasks we would have enjoyed doing; the tasks that most big brothers and sisters grudgingly do. In fact, nobody but the parents and grandparents, after they had scrubbed themselves clean and put on a hospital gown, were allowed in the nursery in which my sister lay. Family and friends had to be content with looking through a window the entire three and a half months that Morgan stayed in the hospital.

When Morgan finally did come home, on May 24th, at four and a half pounds, everyone had to be very careful around her. My brothers and I had to take showers before we could hold her, and Morgan was plugged into a monitor all the time. This monitor annoyingly beeped whenever her heart rate dropped; even an imperceptible drop could cause it to explode with noise, imitating an alarm clock that could not be switched off.

Throughout her time in the hospital everyone worried that Morgan would not pull through. We still thank God every day that she lived. She’s has grown into such a beautiful young woman and nobody would know that she was once a little, fragile one pound 14 ounce baby. You would never believe she was once fighting for her life.

Thankful Thursday- My Family

This week I am participating in ‘Thankful Thursday‘ at Grace Alone. I am most thankful for my three boys these days.

Sinisa- The man that I love

Jacob- My firstborn

Lucas- My baby

Wordless Wednesday- Mommy and Baby Lucas

Mommy and Baby Lucas

Tot School- Family

This week in tot school our theme is family. I will be separating the activities by day instead of type because I think that it will be easier to implement.

*MONDAY- Family

Activity- Family Tree

Craft- Family Handprints

Song- ‘God Made Families’ Action rhyme

Book- My Family and I/Mi Familia y Yo by Gladys Rosa-Mendoza, Prayers For Family Golden Book

*TUESDAY- Mom/Dad

Activity- mom Spanish card , dad Spanish card

Craft- Draw a picture of mommy and daddy– adult writes words “mommy” and “daddy”

Song- ‘Hush Little Baby’

Book- Daddy Kisses by Anne Gutman and Georg Hallensleban, My Dad by Debbie Bailey, Mama, Do You Love Me? by Barbara M. Joosse, Picture Me as Mom’s Little Helper by Wendy Rasmussen, Back In My Arms by Dorothea DePrisco, If You Were My Bunny by Kate McMullan

*WEDNESDAY- Siblings

Activity- Help feed baby brother Lucas lunch, big brother Spanish card

Craft- Big Brother Crown

Song- ‘I Love You’ (Barney song)- teach Jacob motions and to hug and kiss baby brother

Book- I’m A Big Brother by Joanna Cole, Big Brother Bunny by Pamela Kennedy

*THURSDAY- Grandparents

Activity- Look at pictures of Grandma Jan (who passed away in June)

Craft- Grandparent Awards

Song- ‘Grandma’s House’ , A Song for Grandma and Grandpa

Book- Grandpa and Me by Karen Katz

*FRIDAY- Extended Family

Activity- Bake cupcakes for Aunt Morgan’s Birthday today

Craft- Make and decorate a card for Aunt Morgan

Song- Family Fingerplay

Book- Hugs & Kisses by Roberta Grobel Intrater

*WEEKEND- Family Traditions

Activity-Make breakfast as a family & eat together, Watch Barney movie “Families Are Special”, Play w/ Personalized Peekaboo Book

Craft- Make a photo book of family members

Song- Review songs from the week

Book- Guess How Much I Love You by Sam McBratney and I Love You Through and Through by Bernadette Rossetti-Shustak

*************

FIND MORE TOT SCHOOL CURRICULUM THEMES HERE: 

http://www.makingtimeformommy.com/lesson-plans-for-toddlers-preschoolers/

Luke’s First Haircut

Lucas was born needing a haircut. Seriously. We waited until he was 5 days shy of his 8 month “birthday” before caving in and taking him. The “SHE’s so cute” comments at the grocery store when HE was dressed from head to toe in blue had to end.

We took Lucas to Kid Snips and I took a lot of pictures to remember the experience. Here are a few of my favorites:

Look at that mop head :)

A side view of the "before" hair

He spent most of the time eating his smock

Mommy, what are they doing to me?

Putting the final touches on it

I couldn’t believe how much a haircut could change him so much. He looks so grown-up!

My Baby Boy Is Growing Up!

I was at work today and I got a text saying “guess what Jacob learned to do today?”… well turns out he learned to jump out of his bed! I knew it was coming but thought maybe I had at least a few more months of crib “safety”.

After being assured he was ok my thoughts immediately went to figuring out a plan for Jacob’s sleeping arrangement. His dad thought he was too young to be done with his crib but I don’t think he is. We decided to take the rail off of his crib and put up a bed rail so he doesn’t fall out.

As I write this he has been in bed for over two hours and not gotten up. The big test will be what happens when he wakes up in the morning…

Here are some pictures (and yes, next step is to lose the pacifiers at bedtime)

:)

Getting into bed himself

Crib turned into a big boy bed

Sleepy already

Auntie Morgan reads a bedtime book

Daddy and baby brother Lucas were there to say goodnight, too!

Create a Child’s Wardrobe on a Budget

I am very excited to announce that today is my first time guest posting on a blog. You can find me sharing my tips on how to find cheap clothes for your children at the website ‘Saving Cents With Sense’ here. Thank you Melissa for giving me the opportunity to meet your readers :)

Create a Child’s Wardrobe on a Budget

Just a Bit of Perspective…

A few hours ago I was fed up. I had declared this day to be “one of my worst mommy days ever” and was literally ready for it to be tomorrow. Ok, so sometimes I can be a little dramatic… I’m sure I have had worse days but this day was seriously horrible.

A little background: Both my children have bronchitis which meant I was tired from being up a lot the night before cleaning out noses. It also meant the boys were extremely cranky because they were not feeling well. On top of this I think they gave me some of their sick germs because I was was congested and feeling a head cold coming on.

Since it was the weekend most of you moms out there would assume that I probably had help. Nope, not the case. Daddy was working which meant I was home alone. I was dealing with things up until that point but then I got a call from Sinisa that he was working 5 hours longer than he was originally scheduled to. This is when I lost it and demanded that he tell his boss no he couldn’t work overtime because he needed to go home to his family. Oh. Yes. I. Did. Long story short he stayed at work and when he came home I was in a better mood.

Why?

BECAUSE I PUT THINGS INTO PERSPECTIVE…

Sinisa was working all day BUT at least he has a job.

My kids are sick BUT at least they are home and not sick enough they had to be hospitalized.

Lucas didn’t want to take his medicine BUT at least we had insurance to pay for the medicine.

Jacob wiped snot all over me continuously BUT at least we had tissues he could have used.

Lucas spit carrots in my face BUT at least I had a sense of humor.

Jacob was cranky BUT at least he has toys to play with and TV to take his mind off of being sick.

Lucas had major diarrhea BUT at least I have other diapers and clothes to put him in.

Jacob dumped two bowls full of food on the ground BUT at least he has food to eat.

Lucas cried a lot BUT at least he can vocalize his feelings.

As for me-

I’m tired BUT at least I have a warm bed to crawl into.

I have a messy house BUT at least I have a roof over my head.

I have a huge to-do list BUT at least I have opportunities for future personal growth.

I was frustrated BUT at least I have friends to talk to that reassure me that things will get better.

I had a hard day BUT at least I am alive and have a family to complain about.

AND I have an awesome little sister who, as I type, is making homemade cookies *and she even offered to let me lick the spoon*. Chocolate cookies make everything a little better, don’t ya think? :)

What Inspires Me

What inspires me?

_______________________________________________________________________________________________________

These handsome boys :) Their smiles make me want to be a better person.

This post is linked up to ‘Just A Motivating Monday’ at http://www.garibaysoup.com. Visit her site and add your own post or just take a look at what motivates others.

My main goals for 2010

I am very excited to start this new year. I’m looking forward to my best year ever! (ok, I keep hearing that from everyone but it’s true!) I’m a very goal-oriented person so I always keep a goal list that I update a few times a year. Kind of like my bucket list , I guess. Since I have hundreds of goals on that list I decided to focus on a select number of them in 2010.

Goal #1- Read the whole Bible in 90 days. To find out more about this program you can go here or here. This challenge is listed first because it starts today. I am very excited to do this but am also nervous because it is a big task. I’ve never read the Bible all the way through, let alone in 90 days. I think it is an achievable goal this year because of two main things: 1) I’m doing it with other moms who will hold me accountable and 2) it’s only about 12 pages a day! Wow. Reading the Bible had always seemed like such a huge task and I would have guessed it would take 30-40 pages a day to read it in just 90 days, but 12? That’s easy. Ok, well maybe not easy, but manageable with two kids and a career. (Update: My sister just read the first day’s reading as I was typing this post and it took her less than 20 minutes…)

Goal #2- Save half of our income. This will probably be the hardest goal that I have set for myself. I have always been a “shopaholic” who can’t resist a good “deal” (check out my dad’s blog post about me) but I have decided that is going to change this year. Part of why we moved in with my dad was to save for a house and in the past six months we have only saved about $500. In my defense we did have to fix our two cars, but in reality we had an extra income these past few months so those repairs should have come from that. I am still working on a budget and hoping there is some spending money but if not I will just have to learn to live with less.

Goal #3- Keep my house “company ready” (though really it needs to get to that point before I can keep it there). It doesn’t have to be spotless but it would be nice to know that if someone happened to stop by my home I wouldn’t be embarrassed to let them in the door. And it would be even better if they could look in my closets, cupboards, etc and they would be organized, too. The first step towards this goal is to finish unpacking from our August move. Our two car garage is so filled with boxes that only one car can barely fit in. Eventually I would like to have a weekly cleaning list, too.

Goal #4- Work on my relationships. With Sinisa I would like to make couple time a priority since it’s rare we are both home without the boys being awake. With my mom I would like to work on communication. With my friends I would like to focus on seeing them once a week whether it’s at playdates or mom’s nights.

Goal #5- Become a “better” blogger. This includes blogging more often than I have in the past (I am aiming for 3-5 times a week), building relationships with other bloggers, reading and commenting on other blogs, and looking into how I can improve the look of my blog.

Goal #6- Do something for myself daily. This “something” could be as little as taking a nice, hot relaxing shower to getting a pedicure to scrapbooking. Just a daily thing to remind myself that I am special :)

What are your goals for 2010?

Looking ahead…

Today was my little sister’s 13th birthday and while debating on what I should get her, I thought about every other special occasion that was coming up this Spring and Summer for my family. I decided to make a list because… well, that’s just what I do :)

March- Stepmom’s birthday and Sinisa’s (fiance) birthday

April- Easter

May- Brother’s 1st Wedding Anniversary, Other brother’s birthday and graduation from high school, Nephew’s 2nd birthday

June- Son’s 1st birthday, my due date for baby Lucas, my sister’s birthday, my sister-in-laws birthday

July- My sister-in-law is due with my niece, my birthday is at the end of the month

That’s 13 gift giving occasions. And knowing me and my pregnant, mommy brain I probably forgot something. I’m glad I made this list ahead of time because I have just started budgeting (March is month one) and I will need to include an amount for gift giving every month from now until the end of Summer.

August 5, 2008

Looking back at my post yesterday I realized I did not share the biggest news of the day…. my son was two months old!!! (bad mommy!) I can’t believe that I gave birth to him that long ago. I wrote him a letter last night telling him all of the new things he had started doing over the past month (smiling, noticing toys, and um, headbutting). I am so proud of him each day like I guess all parents are. OH and you will never believe what I did today… I hurt my child! Physically hurt him! It was an accident and I ended up crying more than he did. See he woke up this morning with a huge scratch right in between his eyes because his nails were long because someone (that would be me) is afraid that I will get some of his skin in the clippers. So I decided I could not wait any longer because he was getting his picture taken today and I didn’t want him to scratch up his face even more. I clipped one nail, then two, then three, then four and ahhhhhhhh!!!! clipped some of his skin. His face, the look was what made me feel the worst. It was like “how could you do this to me mommy?” And then the blood. Just the tiniest bit but I had made my child bleed. He’s fine now thank God. I know he won’t remember the time when mommy got his skin in the nail clippers but I still felt bad.

Tonight I went on a date with my wonderful fiance ( I actually got to use one of my 50 million cute purses). I had received a gift card to Chilis for my birthday (thanks to my mil) so we decided to use it. The food was so good. It was nice spending time with him. In other relationship news, we are starting the “21 Day Complaint Free Marriage Experiment” (www.simplemarriage.net -sorry I’m new to blogging and don’t know how to make this clickable so you are just going to need to copy and paste). As much as my fiance does for me I know I still find things to complain about so hopefully this experiment will remind me to keep my words positive.

Other than starting that experiment, today was my first day of my competition with my sister in law to see who can lose the most weight in three months. I had debated about putting my weight on here for everyone to see but screw it… please keep in mind I just had a baby… and don’t laugh when I tell you… 173.8. Wow I can’t believe I just wrote this down and am going to publish this. Anways, back to what I was saying. Yes, that’s how much I weigh and I haven’t yet determined how much I want to lose per week. I don’t even know what’s healthy and realistic to lose. I think I started today off ok. I didn’t exercise because I wanted to spend as much time with my family as possible (my man works two jobs and it’s been over a month since he’d had a day off). Today I have had: ham sandwich with mustard and cheese, crispy chicken salad, two rootbeers, one strawberry daiquri (yum), and a cup of chocolate skim milk. Oh and I had half a scoop of vanilla ice cream, almost forgot that. My food choices weren’t the best but on the positive side, I didn’t snack on anything.

Today’s challenge: Remind your partner of one thing that makes them fantastic. If you are single then tell a family member/roommate one thing that makes them great. :) Have a wonderful day!

August 2, 2008

I didn’t post last night because I decided to spend some time with my family and watch an episode of Criminal Minds (seriously love that show). Yesterday I went to lunch with my grandma and then talked with her and my grandpa. I really enjoyed this time. I realized how old my grandparents were getting as I sat across the table from my grandma and looked at her “life” lines (aka wrinkles). I have never had a close relationship with them and, even though I live about 20 minutes from them, normally only see them on Holidays. I went out to visit them because instead of sending money for my birthday my grandma wanted to take me out to lunch so she could see the new addition to our family. I had been meaning to call her and set up a time to visit for the previous month but can never motivate myself to pickup the phone, always putting it on tomorrow’s “to-do” list. So anyways, I was talking with them and it was funny to hear all their stories. My grandparents said they used to pay fifty cents an hour to their babysitter. And then my grandpa was saying how when he was in college he made $7 a week. I couldn’t believe how much times had changed. It was nice visiting with them and I decided to make an effort to visit them more because I don’t want to regret not taking the time to see them later.

Today was a great day as well, but for different reasons. I went to garage sales with my sister-in-law and we found some wonderful deals. One lady was selling all of her baby boy’s clothes for 6 outfits for a dollar! Though Jacob has more clothes than I do (and those that know me find that hard to believe) I couldn’t resist buying him more because they were such a great price. I’m the type of person who aims to not have to have him wear the same outfit twice. A little materialistic I know but that’s just who I am. These clothes were so cute and then I got some with matching hats and I can’t wait to put him in these things. We went to Goodwill, too and I bought a bunch of parenting books. I’m always interested to learn new methods and ideas in childcare and in raising children. Then if these deals weren’t enough, I went and picked up some free baby items from someone I found on freecycle.com. If you haven’t been to this website I highly recommend you go now… yes, I’m telling you to leave my page that is how much I love this website. To end the afternoon I had a crunchwrap from tacobell. I normally get the same thing each time I go but because of my 300 list I have decided to try new things.

I’m looking forward to tomorrow (or today considering it’s 12:14 in the morning) and all the great possibilities the day will bring.