Showing posts with label my ptc life. Show all posts
Showing posts with label my ptc life. Show all posts

Friday, July 18, 2014

Summer Snaps

Remember when I used to have a blog??  Oh yeah, those were the good ol days.  I would say life has been busy, and in a way, it has, but really I've just been depleted of energy and motivation.  And that's ok.  But I don't want a big gap in our digital history, so here's a snippet of life this summer.  In photos.  And commentary. 

This kid.   She's 2 in one week and it's been amazing to me to see her grow up before our very eyes.  (Look for sappy, long post coming soon).  This is her to a T - always in motion, cheeser grin, snack in hand.

She will kiss my belly sometimes.  Usually she blows kisses, like she's doing here.  It's perfect.  Pretty sure she has no idea why I request it, but she knows it makes mama happy.

Such old news, I know... but 4th of July happened and Harper had a BLAST at our local parade.  Seriously, it was like her best day ever.  I worried she would be restless and want to run in the street or would fuss and we'd have to lock her in the stroller.  But instead, she was fascinated and sat/bounced excitedly in our laps the entire hour plus.  (side note: I'm never going to be able to break the finger sucking habit...not that I've tried yet or anything....)

She's big on trucks ("chaRUCK") these days, so when the fire truck came through AND sounded it's siren, she about died.  And honestly, I was glad I had sunglasses on because I shed a few tears.  I know it's hormones and whatnot, but seeing her so excited and so grown up was more than I could take.

With her Mimi

Just chilling in her little tiny person chair.

Papou and Mimi


She's very patriotic. 

We've spent some summer pool days with her cousins Ava and Isaac too.  Harper is meh about the pool.  She wants in but doesn't want to be in a float and doesn't want to be held but can't hold herself up in the life vest.  So she whines and wants to run around the pool on the burning concrete and risk falling in every five seconds.  Basically, it's exhausting.  Definitely not "fun" - but we're MAKING MEMORIES! 

She's so into copying these days.  She sees us do something once, and she's all about doing it herself. 

She's the muscle of this operation.

It's certainly been a task to keep her entertained and busy every day this summer.  I'm just huge and hot and going outside is not what I want to do - but of course that's all she wants to do.  

Or read her books. they all get taken out like this.  I love that she's a bookworm!

Rare pool fun.

She loves to sniff flowers.  Dramatically.

I've been trying to soak up little moments with her, knowing this one-on-one time is short-lived.

We picked blueberries!

Well, mom and dad did. 

We went to a splash pad.  Much more ideal for pregnant mom that pool chasing.

She's alllll about helping.  

And laying in random places.

Summer is winding to a close, which is hard to believe.  Life's about to change for us big time.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Our Small Group - And How It Changed Our Lives

(Our whole small group - kids included!)

Two years ago, our friends Mikey and Kacy asked if we wanted to be in their newest small group.  They had been in one for the prior two years - we knew it was through the church that they went to (and loved), and we knew they met weekly, but that was about it.  We did know that they seemed to really enjoy it and had met lots of new people because of it.  So, honestly, in the interest of maybe getting a few friends, we said yes.

One of the best decisions ever.

To start, Tony and I aren't exactly the most outgoing people you will ever meet.  And when it came to religion, we were pretty private about it. We had both grown up in relatively traditional churches and were a little weirded out by the "all about it" types {still am, to a degree ;) }.  Talking about anything with others, let alone spiritual or even kindasorta spiritual subjects, wasn't really something we would have pegged ourselves as being into.

But a funny thing happened when we joined that group.  Yes, we made friends (yes!).  But, we also found a place where we could genuinely connect to other couples in a similar stage of life as us (youngish married with kids) and talk about things that really mattered.  Sure, we did some book study type things on books of the Bible or religious books or parenting or marriage books, which were all great.  We learned some good info.  We joined their church and have become connected in ways that we never would have otherwise.  We are actively living our faith in a way we never did before.  And we like it!

But what mattered the most was the true community that developed between all of us.  They call it "doing life" together - in circles, not in rows.  What stands out most are those deep conversations we had about whatever, anything - anything that was important to someone at that point in their life.  Sometimes the conversations were very sad, sometimes frustrating, sometimes we celebrated a victory or a success and sometimes we cried with others about their heartbreaks or disappointments.  We knew what was going on with each of these 4 other couples each week.  We knew what was really going on in their hearts - and they knew what was happening in ours.

When you make a commitment to be open and honest each week with 8 other people who are mostly strangers, you develop a type of bond that is like no other.  You have people who can hold you accountable, who know the good and the bad, who know your story and want to be a part of the rest of it moving forward.  There are no secrets.  These people want to build you up and support you and help you achieve everything you have ever wanted.  They want to be there through the hard times and are always there to help or give advice.  

They are more than just friends.

Our group made a commitment at the beginning to be true, genuine, deep, and not "surfacey."  We didn't want it to be acceptable to answer the question "how are you doing" with a "fine" when things really weren't fine at all.  We wanted each other to ask the hard questions and to keep us on track with whatever it may be, even if that meant questioning a decision or pointing out a flaw. We wanted to really let each other into our lives - and we did just that.

When we started, we weren't yet pregnant or trying to be, and all of the other couples already had at least two kids.  So it was really so amazing to get true insight into parenting life and see couples a few years further down the road than we were.  We absorbed info like sponges.  We temporarily wavered with our decision to have a kid at all (kidding. sort of.)  Funny thing is, each of the women ended up being pregnant and having a baby at some point during the two year group   Something in the group water.

(All the kiddos!  So many!  The whole bottom row has only happened after our group started!)

Some Monday nights were more productive than others.  The good nights were always when there were tears (sometimes good, sometimes bad).  Sometimes we just had fun and enjoyed each other's friendship.  Other times we talked about our relationship with God, prayed for important things, or got into how a decision was weighing on us.  We always got something out of it, each night.  It's a pretty big commitment to put one night a week down as taken, to find babysitting, to get everything done to be able to spend a few hours at someone's house (ok, this was all pretty easy for us).  But it was so, so worth it.

Our new group began this week (I was too sick to go, bah!).  I was so sad to leave our other group - I already hate that I don't know the details of what's going on in each person's life each week.  Yet we made some amazing friendships that I know will last on.  I want to continue to be a part of each of their lives, as they have become such a big part of mine.  And I'm so excited to develop this same bond with some new couples as well.

I'll finish this up by stealing words Janna wrote on the subject, since she put it much more eloquently than I ever could.  (See, if you're in a group, you have license to plagiarize each other)
I know there are groups that aren't real, aren't vulnerable, and aren't authentic. Our group is none of those. We are surrounded by a fake world that is more concerned with appearance than the heart. Our small group is a safe place we can be open, honest, fully vulnerable, and fully receive grace and encouragement instead of condemnation.
Oh, and to continue with the stealing, here's the best endorsement ever from Kim:
I can honestly say I love these people.  I would even hug some of them, and I hate hugs and touching in general so yeah.

Joining a small group was a great decision for us and it really has changed our lives.  Something really fantastic happens when you move beyond rows and into circles.  We hope to never go without one again.  

Monday, August 12, 2013

Oh Weekend.

Happy Monday!

We had one of those fun, relaxed, enjoyable weekends over the past few days.  It was so nice that it made me realize how we hadn't had one like that in a while.  It was a chance to soak up sunshine and family.  I feel rejuvenated and determined to get out of my funk.  In fact, I promised myself I would.  So far, so good!

Will pictures make this overly-detailed, youdon'treallycareaboutit recap a little more endurable?  Yes?  Ok!

Here's a look at our weekend, mostly in Instagram snaps:

Friday we got to see my aunt and uncle on their way to visit family in Atlanta.  They live pretty far from us so we rarely get to see them - so fun they came to see us and met Harper!

We are house/dog sitting for Tony's parents, so we had the chance to use their pool whenever we wanted to (a nice perk to balance out moving all our stuff over here and wrangling four dogs). :)
Mikey and Kacy came over with the kiddos Friday night and we ate dinner and swam - there was even some diving board action.

Saturday morning we woke up and decided to go get breakfast, something we don't often do.  It was dead at Flying Biscuit at 7:30, so we didn't have to worry too much about our screecher.  It was so pleasant we decided to make it a sometimes-tradition.

Saturday it was actually sunny!  Like, all day!!  This is a straight miracle, considering it has been raining this entire summer.

We sunbathed and swam (all with plenty of spf, don't you worry).  Harper loves swimming and we entertained her with crazy diving board jumps.  She would get so excited when we counted down to jumping!

Harper flirted with using her sippy cup instead of a bottle, but then rebelled.  We are on a trial basis now...

Saturday night, Tony had his fantasy football draft... (please tell me some others of you have to endure this season of life each fall, too....).  I got to watch baby Finn for the evening.  He was (always is!) super good and so laid back, but I was on my toes feeding and changing and entertaining.  God bless the mamas of Irish twins!

A little issue when Harper saw Finn getting a bottle.  Melt.down.  

The rest of the time she wanted to crawl on him or pull his toes.  We both loved watching him smile and coo.

Sunday we went to church and spent more time in the pool.  Tony got a dose of dadding when I went to volunteer for a few hours at church that evening with some hyper Kindergartners.

All in all, fantastic weekend spent doing a whole lot of nothing.  I hope yours was just as great!

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Things I did today that were stupid

Things I did today that were stupid:

- I decided to make pinto beans for Harper from scratch, like from the bean, not the can. Wait so I have to soak them?? Ugh. Glad I know exactly what's going into her food, but next time girl is getting canned. And seriously, I have refried beans for a million people over here, if you're interested.

- I spent all of glorious nap times finishing a book.  And being mad at the book.

- I went outside. Yes, it was a glorious day, all 80s and sunshine. But I've sounded like a toad for a week because of the awful pollen that coats every single inch of everything these days, and now I'm toadier. My neck is red from me clawing at it like a bird every time I cough the sandpaper pipsqueak cough. But we went outside. And swung (swang?) and Harper loved it. Worth it. [proof]

- I looked In the mirror today in full midday light, baby on hip, wet hair slicked back into a messy knot, no makeup in sight, wearing a black tee shirt that may or may not be maternity still, eyes red and watery from said pollen, dabs of banana here and there, and really looked. And that was the stupid part. I really looked. And for the first time ever, literally ever, I said to myself: I look old.

- Most stupidly: I wallowed. Ever do that? (Ha no one ever, right?) Like, I got hung up on one little sad thing (not the being old, I accepted that, something else) and it snowballed. Everything "went wrong" from the moment I decided I was sad and pitiful. Harper rubbed squash inside her eyeball for the hundredth time and I determined she was out to get me. She pooped through literally 3 outfits too (who knows why) and she was clearly trying to get in my head. I had quite a few dishes to do and OMG ALL I EVER DO IS DISHES AND LAUNDRY AND POOP PATROL AND SNEEZE annnnd you get the idea. I indulged my bad attitude and sads for a while, shed a tear, Tony let me, kindly, and then I apologized for wallowing. I don't want to be a wallower. Allowing a bad attitude to take root and fester is a slippery slope. I've been down that slope in varying degrees and for varying lengths of time these past few post-baby months, but I want to try to snap out of it when I can. Out of the mud, wallower.

Monday, March 11, 2013

New at the Zoo

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Random updates, inspired by iPhone pics:

- I have spring fever - bad.  This weekend it was in the high 60s/70s and sunny, and now I just want to throw all of my sweaters in the attic and trade my boots for flipflops.  The trees are all blooming here, bulbs are coming up, and you can just sense winter lifting.

Our peach tree blooming (and out of focus)

$1 wheat grass from the farmer's market
- Harper is growing like crazy!  I swear she had a growth spurt this week (but without the night waking that we experienced during previous spurts- yay!).  Her clothes are all of the sudden too small and we had to raise her bouncer and exersaucer to the higher levels.  I'm officially retiring the 6m clothes in favor of 9m.  For some reason, this was just as hard as putting away the newborn stuff.  But it had to be done.  I picked her up from the church nursery yesterday and her little jeans were unbuttoned and unzipped, with her fat little belly rolling over.  The volunteer told me it was probably time to retire those.  I swear they fit that morning when I first put them on her!!
She's big enough to ride in the baskets now! Yay!

Graduating to the big girl stroller too! 

- Harper is also in Habit Breaking Boot Camp Day 1.  She sucks on her first two fingers on her left hand constantly.  I'm ok with this, since she won't take a pacifier, and it certainly helps her self-soothe and go to sleep so easily (she's still sleeping 11.5 at night, with two 2 hr naps and a catnap in the evening!! woot!).  So I'm not out to make her quit that.  However, from the time when she first started eating solids she started sucking on her fingers while she eats.  Like, she will pull them out for a bite then jam them right back in.  It's ridiculous.  She uses them to help her swallow.  I'm pretty sure this is not ideal.  Also, it makes a royal mess.  But when I try to hold them down, she cries and acts like she's choking (she's not.), and eventually the other hand goes in.  Since I don't have two hands for holding her down and an extra for feeding, I have to be creative.  Today we started by putting a sock on her hand.  It's making her so mad during feeding but I don't know what else to do.  I hate that it's teaching her not to use her hands, since I want her to learn to feed herself (she's definitely not there yet with the dexterity!), but perhaps I can break this habit and then start fresh...?

Bad habits.

But she's so cute while doing it!

Sock hand!

Angry, smearing sock hand green beans all over her face.
- We've been trying to eat healthy, replacing a lot of meat with veggies, beans, etc. I've been doing well on my daily activity too. It feels pretty good!

Sweet potato, kale, chicken sausage soup - so good!
(from a mag but kinda like this recipe)
- We signed Harper up for swim lessons for May! Tony's parents have a pool that I know we will be at often this summer, so I want to get her used to it all. Also, I didn't learn to swim until middle school, and birthday pool parties were my nightmare. Harper will be a swimmer! The only problem... I have to be in there too, requiring a bathing suit. Ugh!

- We have an appt tomorrow with the orthopedist - can't wait to see if her foot is still doing well and if we can reduce her time in the brace to nights only!

Saturday, February 16, 2013

A Great Day

Leave it to a perfect day in the middle of a dreary winter to make me feel so full, so alive.

The sky was crystal blue with fluffy little pouches of clouds.  The air was crisp, but not cold.  The sun was shining and the kind of excitement that's only possible on a Friday afternoon filled the air.  I had my favorite people in the world with me.

Windows were cast open.  Kids set loose to run free.  Babies trying out swings for the first time.

  Baby smiles, swings and tickles.

A day for counting blessings.

A great day.
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