Thursday, February 27, 2014

Nolan's 12 Month Stats

Our long awaited Well Baby visit has come and gone. I was curious as to how the stats would go and his weight.Nolan had felt much heavier recently, but also seemed to slim down at the same time. So here we are:

Height: 30.25 (53rd %)
Weight: 20.2 (8th %)
Head: 47.75 (80th %)

Eliza 12 month comparison:
Height: 70% at 29.75 inches
Weight: 20% at 19.5 oz
Head: 9% 

The only thing that was of concern to the doctor was his weight. She doesn't want to see him fall much more off the curve. Funny though...if he was on the girls growth chart...he'd be more than fine. But she did state that he didn't look scrawny. How different in the head size though. We are also in store for some molars coming soon as they were found to be swollen back there.

As always, he didn't want much to do with the Doctor and prefered to be in mommy's arms :) Here is to new developments in the next few months!

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Leaping By Faith PART 2


I have to admit...I've had my moments of freaking out about this life change as we prayed and sought council.

I've been immensely invested emotionally and physically into the youth center. I've been in this position for exactly 4 years. Funny how the day I resign is the anniversary of when I started this position.

The youth center started off as an 8 week pilot program in the previous fall with the highest daily attendance being 16 kids. I've taken it to having 35-40 kids daily and more than doubling the equipment and resources needed. I am the only paid staff, and we've been dependant on volunteers or work programs to staff it. An uphill battle I may add as my stress levels have only increased.

The complicated part about my employment is that my church is also where the youth center is, as it has been a bridge ministry. To my knowledge, they do intend to try and keep the doors open after my leaving. I may or may not have privy to the hiring process or hear about changes my replacement may enact. I can guarantee that I will be forced to walk away from conversations in order to keep my mouth shut. I may not like the new changes and the kids may not like the new change in daily routine/behavior consequences.

What will be the hardest is to give up control.

I've had extra perks of being able to borrow play equipment or other resources for ministries outside of my paid hours.

I know the benefits outweigh the perks, such as teaching my kids skills/reducing debt/better home harmony.

It will be a whole new journey to step down from a job to be a full time mom to my kids instead of replacing one job for another or even times of unemployment. Mr. G and I will have to put our faith in God to provide our most basic of needs while cutting safety nets of credit. Budgets will have to be adjusted, but I know God can and will provide...if we are willing to give up control and place our trust in Him.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Pee Pee in the Potty

I am writing chronicling this as I venture down our journey with Eliza to toilet training land. So if you find this stuff to be a little boring or is the time to close this blog tab :)

It all started when one morning I noticed that she had a dry diaper after going all night and after breakfast before church. Mr. G stated that he had not changed her earlier. So in my curiosity, I asked her to try sitting on her little potty. It was met with resistance, so I then asked her about the big potty. This was also met with resistance. By not listening, it earned her a quick swipe on the bottom and then she complied. I started singing the Sunday school song, My God is so Big to help relax her.

Sure enough....pee pee in the potty!

While at church, they tried to get her to go with them, but with no success. After church and after eating our dinner, I noticed a dry diaper and thought of making another try.

Tinkle tinkle!

Later in the afternoon, she had peed in her diaper and then had an accident in the cloth trainers...but I hadn't been very diligent in prompting her. After bath time, we had another success.

Stickers are a very good incentive reward for her, and we have reserved some Jake and the Neverland Pirates ones for just this kind of victory. They are also used for being cooperative during speech therapy.

I am a pretty happy and slightly relieved (no pun intended) at today's results since it has been sporadic interest in using the potty and holding it for any real length of time. Especially to go all night.

I swear, her methods do not make sense most of the time and bewilder this mommy.

Updates will follow this post as we see how any continued efforts go.

Monday, February 24, 2014

Leaping By Faith

As you are reading this today, I will or will have turned in my letter of resignation and stepping down from my position as the Youth Director.

As some of my long time readers have known, I have long desired to be a full time SAHM. It has pained me gratefully of having to pay someone else to watch my children while I go and play with other people's children. Especially when the Summer months hit. It had required me to work full time, spending most of it inside a gym of basement in very sweating, soaking your undies sort of humidity. And without fail, it would rain on the weekends.

The biggest reason for this life changing decision is due to the fact that by me working, it is costing us more than we can afford. Childcare is not the obvious cost. We've been blessed with very affordable rates.But with this being said, it does take a chunk out of my weekly pay. It is the hidden and even small costs that have been adding up. Catching dinner through the drive-thru or out to eat because neither of us were able to get dinner going before hand. The house suffers with being backlogged on chores. We are both under a lot of stress and responsibility with our jobs and ministry, which takes a toll on our marriage.

As the years have piled up with this lifestyle and job losses or pay cuts...the previous debt has only increased. When your next biggest monthly expense next to rent is a credit card payment the size of a very nice new can be depressing when the reason for a lot of the debt is by buying food and gas.

For tax purposes, I have to quit my job. This means we can downsize to one car and sell the other. Our recent tax return has gone to pay off one card which is also getting closed. Less gas costs and insurance will be required and another card balance will be cut in half, making the payment easier to stomach.

I won't kid around about the fact that I know this year will come with growing pains. We will have to give up some luxury conveniences and being content with what we have already. There are a lot of things to do for free out there, but the cost of gas has to be considered. Our cooked meals will have to be on the simple end. By my not working, we should qualify for WIC. Using this program has been a difficult thing for Mr. G to be okay with, based on his own personal morals and convictions about state aid programs.

If all goes to plan, March 28th will be my last day at work.

Stay tuned for PART TWO of my thoughts on this.

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Baby Bumbo

In my attempts at trying to be creative with a baby shower gift, I ended up coming up with this little baby boy on the fly. I upcycled a bunch of misc baby stuff that had been gifted or a gently used hand me down. Things like newborn diapers that had been buried in a closet, bibs never worn from other outfits etc. I think I only spent 60 cents on the travel wipes. The binky leash was made awhile go and I was happy to part with our bumbo seat that was given at Eliza's shower several years ago. If we indeed have another child, it is one of those items I think I could live without. Baby shoes were stuffed with a rolled diaper with a sock while blue string held the feet in place. All in all, it was well received among the crowd.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Dog Sledding

In the past, I have always been working during this event. I hated missing all these fun things in the afternoon, but with this being the week of winter break, I was able to change my schedule in order to go. This is held at a small local library by a father and daughter team. The library director is a mentor mom with our MOPS group and she always making sure we know of these fun and free events. I am always trying to find new and fun experiences for my kids when possible...and I am sure this will be a highlight of their young lives.

Eliza found a cozy place to get into a book

Doggie Kisses

After I had been searching, this is where I found her hiding

I LOVE window lighting

A friend of mine helping out with a determined toddler throwing a fit

Getting on their leads and ready to head out

I was pretty thrilled with the fact that Nolan was on board with riding with his sister. 
He'd been fussy and not happy to be stuck in the jogger while outside.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

So Many Thoughts

In this new year, I knew this was to be a year needing MANY answers for our family. This week is being spent in prayer and petition for guidance. With a now possible reality possibly taking place, it has brought up numerous emotions evoking a whole new perspective on change.

I have a love/hate relationship with change. I don't do well with change, but at the same time will demand it. Well, maybe demand the change that I have control over. I like to have control, like most others do enjoy. I will plan things or fly by the seat of my pants plan when in the heat of the moment at work.

This possible new change brings the first half to be one I do control.It will allow me to have much more control over my life. But on the other side of the change, a lot is out of my control and will push my faith into a stream I have not yet walked through. It would tease my urge to control something I use to have control over, but due to my choice, I will no longer have the power I once had. It is a power that comes with great stress and responsibility. It is a power that will grant me a different kind which comes also with the former, but in a more personal and intimate setting.

If God does open the doors we are knocking on this week and grants a peace only HE can bestow...I will certainly let you all know.

Blessings and prayers.

Friday, February 14, 2014

Valentine's or Single's Awareness Day

However you describe it, this day brings on a host of issues for either side. Singles embrace more bitterness while couples eat up every sappy card and squeeze teddy bears extra tight.

I think the most anticipated and really enjoyed Valentine's Day I had was when Matt and I were still dating. You were happy to have someone special to celebrate it, but unscathed by the harsh realities of how hard it can be to really LOVE a person selflessly in marriage.

With our wedding anniversary only 7 days past this momentous celebration among card companies, chocolatiers and kinda trumps most of the excitement traditionally found in Valentines. With money being tight, we rather invest the extra into the day that should matter most in the year. Vows which have been the toughest to keep day in and day out. Throw kids into the mix and you've got sand thrown into your eyes as you try and see past the exhaustion it takes to keep a family together while not ignoring your spouse.

As much as you might hate to agree...Valentines Day is more for the singles than married. You haven't built up a tolerance to all the oxytocin in your system, so everything is new and dare I say...exciting? Yet, if you were to try and convince me of this while single, I would have been tempted to spit in your face, hehe.  

So that is my take. Anyone else agree or disagree?

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Recent Statuses

You know you have REALLY entered your 30's when your excited to try out a new steam mop on a Saturday night....

I think Folgers had it all wrong. The best part of waking up is poopaghetin contained in a toddlers fleece sleeper. I don't know if there is anything left to shock me as a mother.

What wonderful awkward nostalgia!

I like my phone...I really do. But I however, do not like the emergency dialer button that comes up after failed lock screen attempts....Yeah....Eliza called 911 TWICE and they called back 2 times...all while I was unaware that she had swiped my phone this morning.

Saturday, February 1, 2014