Friday, May 27, 2011

Summer is Here

In no particular order...
Dora "candies" and wings!
After Ruthie saw Noa's candies, she HAD to wear Noa's Dora jammies. Side note: we can't stand Dora. I don't know why I broke down and bought these pj's or the underwear for that matter. The older they get, it is really hard to find pj's without characters on them though. So, I guess we're going with the flow. I want to sell Jesus pj's. I wonder if they would be a hit? Jesus is waaayyyy better than Dora.

I think this is the best one yet!
I let Lydie have some tummy-time at Daddy's office and she fell asleep, sucking her thumb right there in the middle of the floor...
...and then woke up all smiles!
Someone was ready for the beach!
Ruthie and "Hoo-ee" her horse. She loves his tail.
Their new favorite spot.
Nana's house
A day in the life
Not only do we have a duck family that visits all the time, we now have DEER! This is the first and only time we've ever seen them, although I'm sure they've been there all along. :) I need to quit praying these animals in or else we'll have a zoo in the backyard.

Dress up, complete with "Bubba Teeth." Ooooo SCARY!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Thankful Thursdays

This will be quick as I'm just getting back into the groove after a great get-away this week. I'm also trying to get this done before the older girls get out of the bath (yeah right). :) My attitude has been in the dumpster today after a failed trip to the Children's Museum. We got there and left in about 15 minutes after multiple melt-downs from both girls and Noa peeing all over the place. I was so irritated that my melt-down lasted all day and was much worse than theirs! So. Yeah. I need this Thankful Thursday more than anyone!! This week I am thankful for:

Refreshing time away with Russ and the Watkins. What a relaxing and simply perfect trip we had! I loved every single thing about it. Really. I am also sooooo very thankful for everyone that helped with the kids for a few days.

Watching Noa run around in the sprinkler, laughing the entire time.

After a double ear infection, Ruthie's ears seem to be better and she hasn't had a fever today! Yay for God's healing hand and good meds!!

Clothes that fit. (Not all of them fit, but some do and I am thankful for them!)

Prime Minister Netanyahu's clear and direct way of reminding the US of the grave situation in Israel and the Lord's voice reminding me to pray for the peace of Jerusalem.

Lydie knows how to take a bottle!!!!! Yes, yes, YES!!! You can't imagine the freedom this brings to my life!

Wow. I just heard on the news that SC had the cheapest gas in the nation. That's something to be thankful for!

Anyway, the girls are now out of the bath and it is time to help Russ get their jammies on... I have some pics to download so I'll have to post them in the next few days. Until next time!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Thankful Thursdays

Apparently there wasn’t anything good to post about last Thursday because a week came and went and I just now realized it! Such is life. And although there’s much to ponder concerning this week, I wanted to highlight someone that we’re thankful for today, the one and only Ms. Louise! Today I decided to take the girls over to see her. Let me tell you about our trip.

Russ left at about 9:00 this morning and that’s when I started getting things ready for our trip to see Ms. Louise. My goal was to leave at about 10:00. She lives in North Charleston and it takes about 35 minutes to get to her house. Now, anyone who has kids knows that even FIVE minutes in the car is a stretch sometimes, especially with a newborn who hates the car. But, I felt up for it today. I’m just going to bullet point the things that we had to do in order to prepare for this little trip. If you currently are in this season with young kids, and want to skip past this part, I don’t blame you! Why would anyone want to re-live the annoying packing and loading step? Skip right ahead! But, for those of you who have never done this or haven’t done it in a while, read on. In order to load these three cute girls up, I had to:

- Get all of them dressed, change diapers, put shoes on (2 or 3 times after they would take them off and lose them)

- Get Noa to go to the bathroom before getting in the car, and then wipe down her little potty, grab toilet paper, and load that up too

- Get a diaper bag ready with dipes, wipes, treats, extra clothes for Noa if she has an accident, burp clothes and a camera for pics

- Get myself ready and go to the bathroom since I won’t have an opportunity to do so with 3 kids hanging on me while we’re there

- Wake the baby up (only to pay for that later) and feed her so she won’t scream on the way and won’t want to eat when we get there

- Load everybody up, crawling all over the backseat to get the 2 older girls strapped in

- Remember everyone’s little security blanket/toy things

- Get my purse and go!!

Whew! Step 1: DONE!

Lydia was already screaming her head off before we even left the driveway. She definitely doesn’t like the car and let us know the entire way out to Ms. Louise’s house. Yes, we enjoyed her blood curdling cry the ENTIRE 35 minutes we were in the car. The other girls were pretty good on the way there, but took their shoes off and threw them on the floor. Lydia finally fell asleep about a minute before we got there and screamed once I woke her up again. When we got there I had to:

- Crawl in the back seat and put the baby carrier on

- Unhook the other girls and keep them from escaping while trying to get their shoes on and get the baby in the carrier (which is like having the baby strapped to you, for those who are unfamiliar with this)

- Grab the diaper bag and my purse

- Comfort the girls when they freaked out after they heard and saw a low flying plane (Ms. Louise lives right by the airport.)

- Convince the girls to get back out of the car (baby strapped to me) after they climbed back in and hid because of the plane. This actually took a while.

- Get them into the nursing home as quickly as possible since they were running all over the parking lot

- Stop to look at and talk to a cat that was roaming around (FREAKY! I HATE CATS!)

Finally, we made it in the building! Whew! Step 2: DONE!

Noa was holding herself and still startled from the plane, so she was scared of everyone that was in there and couldn’t articulate what she needed, although I knew she had to go potty. Of course her timing was perfect. So, Lydia is strapped to me, I am also holding Ruthie, and we are trying to get into one of the bathrooms before Noa had an accident. She’s not that great at holding it yet, so I was pretty anxious as both of the bathrooms were occupied with elderly people. I was relieved when it didn’t take that long for us to get in one. Then the whole potty routine took place while I was trying not to bang Lydia into everything (she was on the front of me) as I tried to keep Ruthie out of the drawers, toilet, shower, etc. etc. etc. Noa was also needing help sitting on the potty and getting toilet paper, etc.

At this point, I was already exhausted and we hadn’t even made it back to see Ms. Louise. So, we finally finished with potty time and headed back to her room. Noa and Ruthie, still shaken by the airplane incident, were also frightened by every elderly person they saw along the way, so I kept having to stop, comfort them, wait, stop, wait, wait, wait, comfort, wait, stop… It took about 5 minutes to get down the hallway.

FINALLY we made it to Ms. Louise’s room! And you know what? The smile on her face was incredible. It was so nice to see her and she was so surprised to see us.

You see, for obvious reasons, we haven’t been there in a while. It really is difficult to take all 3 girls anywhere (especially with Lydia needing to eat and nap so often)! If you know me, you know that I’m not incredibly gifted in the area of mercy. Nope. Not my thing. I wish I was better at it, but in every “Spiritual Gifts Test” I ever take, mercy is second to last, hospitality being the last. Yep. Every single time. Right about now you’re thinking, “What kind of a terrible person is Jackie?” I know. Especially living in the south, right? That is precisely why I decided I needed to force myself to think of someone else. I want my girls to learn how to step outside of their comfort zone for the benefit of others and I realized I needed to start doing that more myself.

We stayed for about 45 minutes in her tiny little room. All of her belongings were low to the ground and the girls kept pulling out her lipstick, clothes, hairbrushes, notebooks. It was maddening to try to control every little thing they were doing. Lydia was fussy and was constantly spitting up everywhere. Ms. Louise had an Easter basket saved up for them, but she had eaten the chocolate out of it long ago and only had the grass left in it, which they spread all over the room. (Side note: Obviously Ms. Louise can’t bend down to get all of it, so who was picking it up before we left with a 15 pound little cutie strapped to her? Um yeah, that would be me. Grass was everywhere!!!) Yeah, it was definitely a busy 45 minutes. But Ms. Louise loved it! The girls danced for her, sang for her, got a little ride on her walker, and we all prayed for her before we left. Other people kept popping in their heads to see what all the commotion was about too. They all loved seeing the girls even though they were actually quite a handful and a little fussy.

The ride back was also terrible with Lydia screaming the whole way. She finally fell asleep about 5 minutes before we got home, precisely when Noa and Ruthie decided to have a fit about who could hold the sippy cup, waking her up again. I was so glad to be home as the whole thing was exhausting and took up our entire morning.

I was reminded of John 13:35 which basically says that others will know we are Jesus’ disciples because we love one another. Let me tell you that I was not up for it when Lydia was screaming on the way there. I had to pray that God would pour out His love for Ms. Louise into my heart (Romans 5:5) because I totally wasn’t feeling it. But He did! And my girls and I learned a few valuable lessons today. 1. Loving others is doable. 2. People need our love. 3. It is always rewarding for all involved.

Is there someone who needs the love of the Father expressed through you today? Maybe you have the luxury of just hopping in your car to go bless someone without lugging kids around. Maybe you have been blessed financially and could stand to give some away. The possibilities are endless! Step outside of yourself and go love someone! And then ask God for help! I think this is going to be a regular thing for us now. J

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Quick Little Post

No time folks! But boy am I good to you! Russ and I are going out of town this Sunday (YIPEE!!!) and the week is totally PACKED up until that time. We, however, are not packed. It takes a lot of time and energy for me to get everything ready for everyone. This is the second most draining job in the world for me and I keep putting it off. Blaaaaah! (The first most draining job would be sorting through the girls' clothes, putting the outgrown ones in the attic and bringing down new ones. I can't tell you how much I hate that job, which is why my girls constantly look like their clothes are either sucked to their bodies or 2 sizes too big.) Anyway, that's the reason I am blogging right now rather than packing. Yuck. Don't even want to think about it. I also don't want to think about the fact that I have to find a bathing suit that works for me right now. Ugh. Another reason to put off the packing... So this post is dedicated to my old friend procrastination. Here's to you, my faithful buddy!
Found some pics of Noa's birthday party again. Here's the birthday girl in her new outfit before we ruined it with chocolate frosting. Oh well. We still wear it. ;)
Cousin Micah! He actually just turned 1 this week - can't believe it - and we love that the girls have a big, tough, boy cousin to protect them, since we don't seem to produce any boys ourselves.
I want to eat with abandon, just like this.
Sweet Geegs at the beach. This is maybe the only successful beach trip (out of like 2) that we've ever had. Wish I had more pics - it was such a fun day. Baby slept the whole time on my lap. *love*
And here's a bonus picture of the Lyds with her normal spit-up running down her face. What baby picture is complete without a quilt for them to lay on?! I've gotta get working on some more. I have so many ideas in my head for the girls' room...just need to START on something. But, then again, my constant companion is whispering in my ear, "why start now?" :)

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Our future's so bright...

We need shades!!

But not Babers...she needs "candies" (what Noa calls them) on her head!!

This is where you usually find Noa - right next to her Lydie.
Sleepy little angles
I just found these pics on Russ' computer. Beautiful!!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Thankful Thursdays

1 Thessalonians 5:18 - "In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you."

Fathter, this week I am thankful for...

Reconnecting with an old friend.

Retrieving an old purse for Noa to play with when she and Ruthie were fighting over a different one. Inside I found 2 reimbursement checks from November, totaling $425, which would've become invalid next week. So the Lord not only "surprised" us with money, but saved me from having to jump through hoops to get new ones issued.

A friend's miracle baby girl. After a long and difficult labor, she miscarried her first sweet girl, Halle Jane. They found out she was pregnant again, only she had to spend a majority of her pregnancy on bed rest, completely horizontal. You should take a moment to read this post about a special gift given to this baby girl. God writes the best stories. (be sure to click on Susan's account too - that may help explain it a little better). Anyway, Sienna Faith is here!

Shaping the temple with Ricque, Ivana, and others. My early morning walks have become an incredible prayer time with the Lord. I must admit that I totally have shin splints though!

A break from my insulin pump! I definitely feel way less clunky.

Noa's success in potty training. I think something has finally "clicked." Hallelujah!! Come on somebody!!

Living in a beautiful place full of beautiful parks.

Sharing good dates, good walks, good food, good talks, and incredibly special moments with my husband, the one who truly knows me and still loves me.

The fact that my Lydia has become a pro at sleeping through the night.

The plethora of help we have with the girls - even with my family being far away! Russ' parents are always so helpful in taking the girls on Mondays (and other times) and for our date night, we were even able to leave little Lydie with friends at a moment's notice. Even yesterday I was blessed by 3 different women clamoring to take care of the baby when we have a quick get-away at the end of the month.

And on the flip-side, I am thankful for a hard-working husband who gives me the opportunity to stay home with my loves and the many ways the responsibility of it stretches me, changes me, and blesses me.

Leading worship with Russ at church on Wednesday night!

Healing in our house, yet again! Ruthie is not totally out of the woods yet, but her congestion hasn't turned into something worse and she hasn't had a fever in a while. No one else has gotten sick.

1 Chronicles 4:10 - "Jabez cried out to the God of Israel, 'Oh, that you would bless me and enlarge my territory! Let your hand be with me, and keep me from harm so that I will be free from pain.' And God granted his request." Friends, we are blessed indeed!

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Waterfront Park

Happy Birthday Mom! Here's a sweet little post for you. Wish you were here!!

The weather was perfect tonight, so we made a little picnic and went downtown to Waterfront park. It was soooo beautiful! And what do little kids love more than anything? WATER!!
They were a little sheepish at first, but quickly warmed up to it.

They made some little friends who showed them how to get totally drenched.

Precious Lydie was sooooo patient. :) It was pretty windy and I don't think she liked it very much.

Then they found this grate thing that made noise when they jumped on it, so that kept them busy for a long time. They loved it - especially Ruthie. Everyone that walked by thought they were so sweet, especially a pack of 3 older ladies who were just captivated. I wonder if there's some people out there who just never see kids. And then there's me, who gets to spend every minute with these cuties. Priceless.