Wednesday, April 30, 2008


Tonight, Pastor Mike and Nancy were teaching about "one anothering." Pastor Nancy explained that we like to think of fellowship as going down to the Fellowship Hall, gathering together to eat, talk, and laugh. Overall, we think of fellowship as having fun together. Biblically, fellowship really refers to the practice of sacrificial serving and financial aid. The scripture in the Bible that tells us to "bear one another's burdens" came to mind. Anyway, it was a really good message.

On our walk home from church, Elsie was throwing a tantrum because she didn't want to leave church so Jason and I decided we'd like to partake in the tantrum toddler fellowship!

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

You Are Where You Live

Check this site out, and see if it works for you. I think it worked for us, putting us in the "White Picket Fences" group.

34 White Picket Fences
Midscale, Younger w/ Kids
Midpoint on the socioeconomic ladder, residents in White Picket Fences look a lot like the stereotypical American household of a generation ago: young, middle-class, and married with children. But the current version is characterized by modest homes and ethnic diversity.

The site gives median incomes as well as places where those in the group are likely to shop or eat and which vehicle they're likely to drive. I found it pretty interesting.

People living in the same neighborhoods tend to have similar lifestyles, proving the old adage that "birds of a feather flock together" still holds true. To a large extent, you are where you live!

Boy, Oh Boy

Today has been a frustrating day. Elsie's being clumsy which I can sum up by saying that the poor girl has spent half the day in tears. Most of those tears seem to occur right as I've gotten Claira down for a day, huh?

Anyway, Jason bought a car yesterday. It was near where he works, so he drove my car home and then we drove back to his work so he could drive it home. While we were there, we got to go to Ikea, which is a store I've only been in twice and seriously need like an entire day to look at everything. But, I especially love their storage things and kids furniture. We bought a couple of cute pink stools for the playroom (and photo props) and a really cool wire hanging thing that I want to hang in the playroom to display Elsie's artwork. I'll have to post a picture when that's done.

Claira did fairly well in the car. Elsie slept the entire way there, and we didn't hear a peep out of Claira. That all changed after our little Ikea excursion. She got slightly fussy afterwards so we fixed her up with a few rounds of "Pat-a-cake." After about the fifth time through, Elsie pointed out that, "Claira doesn't eat cake."

Monday, April 28, 2008

My Two Sweet Girls

I took a few pictures of Claira this morning...I love her expression in this just looks like her, and those are the best kind of photos if you ask me. Then, Elsie wanted her picture taken in the same place Claira was. She's rarely willing to sit in one spot for 2.8 seconds so I thought I'd share her as well.

I have no idea what happened to the color in Elsie's photo except that the natural light must've changed. boo.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

You might be getting old if...

the kids you babysat for when you were in high school are now in college! I created a Facebook account recently, and last night I came across several names I recognized. But, the faces are of teenagers and grown-ups rather than little girls in pigtails with skinned knees or babies with wispy blond hair in diapers. I know a LOT has happened since I graduated high school, but there are times that it still feels like yesterday, and I'm left wondering where all of the time has gone. I get these same feelings when I look at pictures of Elsie from just a few years ago. It seems like it can't possibly be any longer than last week that I was holding her in my lap playing pat-a-cake, and now Claira is sitting in her place.


I got a lovely surprise today when I realized that we have tulips blooming in front of our house! I was soooooo excited because they are my all time FAVORITE flower. I just love them. We've got some red ones, purple ones, pink/white ones. They're gorgeous, and I had to take a photo of them. It's been a bit chilly this weekend and VERY windy here, but I'm praying against the forecast that it'll get warmer this week so I can take my two sweet girls outside and pose them with tulips.

Tub Drawings

Elsie's version of cave paintings:

Elsie got some bath crayons in her Easter basket, and up until last night, she was content tracing the outline of the entire bathtub. But, last night she was drawing people! Really, this is quite a milestone because the people actually look like people! It takes so little to please us parents! We took pictures!

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Photo Friday

I know, it's Saturday. I'm only two weeks in to the kickoff of Photo Friday, and I'm already behind the game. We've just been busy. Both girls were anti-nappers this week, which has left me with very little time to do much of anything, especially the fun stuff like blogging and learning anything about my new camera. I was finally able to read through the manual part of my camera manual last night while Jason entertained the girls. So, I'm learning a little bit about aperture and shutter speed. It would really help if I had willing models to participate as guinea pigs for me, but Claira is into her feet now so anytime I try to set her up to take her picture, she just stares at her feet, drooling. Elsie just won't sit still...she bounces up and down, shifts from side to side, you name it, she's doing it with the exception of sitting still. Despite all of my handicaps, here's a recent favorite...I'll try and add more tomorrow.

Let me tell you, switching your camera from full auto to manual is a whole new world. And, unless you want to be a robot and chase the 0 on your exposure meter, my guess is that it's going to take a great deal of practice and trial & error to get this whole exposure thing down. This picture is alright...I like the lighting, but I think the focus is more on the blanket than Claira, which is something I need to work on...hopefully, with some practice I'll be able to get my focus where I want it and quickly to catch those spur of the moment smiles from my baby girl. In the meantime, enjoy!

Thursday, April 24, 2008


Elsie to Mommy: "Well, my chicken is all gone so I might need yours."

Elsie to the cable guy on a ladder: "Watch out, babe!"

Instead of yesterday, Elsie says "last day." So, she'll say, "I don't want a bath. I already had a bath last day."

If it doesn't happen on last day, it happened on Tuesday. More specifically, at 2:28.

And, she's got an imaginary friend named Leigh One. Apparently, Leigh One is a girl, but we don't know much else about her. She makes games. The game she's made is always the game Elsie wants to play, and this changes daily. She also has an imaginary friend named Ice Cream. They played hide-n-seek together once.

The Good News

Jason got a raise and a bonus! Yippee! We're very happy about that since it'll be very helpful during our car shopping extravaganza. Well, it's not really an extravaganza, I suppose, since I hope to travel as little as possible in order to get the car we want. We still haven't actually decided whether we want to get something to last a longer period of time or just get something cheaper to last us a couple of years. I suppose we'd better make our minds up quickly though. It's just not a decision I was prepared to think about right now.

Are you kidding me

Jason's watching the news right now, and it's supposed to get cold next week, and snow is a possibility. I can't even believe that. It's almost May! It's been so nice the past couple of weeks while I have not had a car to drive. So, we're going to look at some cars this weekend, and what do they do? They forecast snow! Geez, Louise!

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Here Comes the Bride

Today is Elsie's Wedding Day. Or at least she must think so. She helped Daddy make spaghetti for dinner tonight and while doing so, she gave him a kiss and said, "Now we're married!" We thought that was quite cute. Then, I had to clear a few things off of the table so we could eat. One thing happened to be a dress we got in the mail so I showed it to her and said, "Look at your pretty new dress." She then told me she wanted to wear it, but I told her it was for Uncle E's wedding. She asked if Eric would be there, and I told her, "Yes, Eric will be at his wedding." Then, after dinner we were watching t.v. Daddy said, "Mommy and me are married. Uncle Eric is going to marry Randi." Elsie was very upset about that, "NO! Eric is married to ME!"

Little does Miss Elsie know that I refuse to marry off my firstborn to the first guy who comes along. I seriously cannot imagine our home without our daughters in it. I know that time will pass, and they'll grow up, but right now, I'm enjoying how little and fun they are. So, hopefully she'll forget about all of this married talk tomorrow.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

A New Game

I went to Target last night on a diaper run, and Jason had requested the game "Cooties" but it wasn't in stock, so I got this matching game instead. It's really cute, and we all enjoy playing so I wanted to share!

When Elsie's Afraid...

She says, "I'm scary," instead of "I'm scared."

Monday, April 21, 2008

Pour Me Another!

One of Elsie's favorite things to do is have a tea, for nursing sake, sometimes Mommy participates from the recliner. We invite the regulars...typically two dolls known as Molly and Michelle. After my fourth serving of tea today, I declined a fifth saying that I was too full for another cup. Well, Elsie grabbed ahold of my tummy and said, "No, it's not full, Mommy." Gee, thanks. "I know I'm still pudgy," I told her. She laughed and redeemed herself. "You're not pudgy, silly mommy! You're beautiful!" she told me.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Let's Go Fly a Kite

This afternoon we put Elsie's kite together and headed outside to fly it. Despite the lack of wind here in the windy city, we did manage to get it up in the air. Elsie was in a fit of giggles the entire time.

Claira really enjoyed being outside too. It was a gorgeous warm day, and we were thrilled to play outside.

We also took a stroller ride.

Oh, and we were inspired to get Claira a jumper this weekend, and we got some footage of her jumping this afternoon. But, I took it vertically with my digital and figured out that I can't rotate, I'll have to take some more footage tomorrow and post it so you can see her jumping!

Friday, April 18, 2008

my girls


TAG. You're It.
Where is your mobile phone? It's on an end table in the living room.
What is your favorite gadget? My camera. My NEW's a Canon Rebel xti.
What did you dream last night? Actually, you're in luck because I did have a dream, and I actually remembered it. I dreamed that I was in some baby boutique, and I couldn't decide which matching outfits to
What do you prefer to drink? I have no idea...I've been drinking 99% water for over a year now so not much else tastes very good.
Dream car? a brand new Cadillac that I can drive off the lot with like 4 miles on it or something.
What room are you currently in? the Kitchen!
Your husband? is at work.
Your hair? NEEDS to be highlighted.
Your mother? is on her way to drop my little brother off at work.
Your father? is at work...? I'm not sure
Your ex? I couldn't care less
Your biggest fear? no comment.
What do you want to be in 10 years? besides the wife and mommy I already am, I'd like to be a successful writer...oh, and a much better photographer.
Who did you spend last night with? my family...Jason, Elsie, and Claira
What are you not? I'm not a pagan!
The last thing you did? Elsie and I danced around the living room to the theme song of the Gilmore Girls...yes, we do this EVERY day!
What are you wearing? pajama pants and one of Jason's t-shirts
Favorite book? One Night with the King
The last thing you ate? an Andes mint
Your life? is good. very good.
Your mood? my new camera is here, and it's the weekend...I'm happy!
Your best friends? Jason and Stefanie...they ROCK!
What are you thinking about right now? editing photos
Your car?
is at work with Jason...since his is a goner! We'll be car shopping soon
What are you doing right now?
Your Summer? can't begin soon enough!
Marital status? MARRIED. HAPPILY!
What is on your TV right now? Gilmore Girls
When did you last laugh? a few minutes ago while Elsie and I were dancing.
When did you last cry? I don't remember
School? I did that...once upon a time.

Photo Friday...Yippee!

My new camera is here! I just ordered it on Wednesday so I'm THRILLED that it has already arrived. And, I'm so excited that despite my placing 3 different orders with different companies for all of the accessories, they are ALL here! So, I've been playing as you can imagine. On the bright side, Claira has taken a nap which has given me a little chance to figure out how to work everything...the downside of Claira napping is that she's a much more willing model than Elsie who chants, "I don't want to smile!" while I click away. Anyway, in honor of my new camera and since today is Friday...I've got a new weekly post. Welcome to..."Photo Friday!" Aren't you thrilled? I AM! I think every Friday I'm going to post a couple of my favorite pictures from the week. Be warned...there may be MANY on this particular Friday!

Here's my first picture taken with my new camera:

More to come!

Thursday, April 17, 2008

The Flight of the Teething Ring

Claira's newest accomplishment is throwing things. Of course, it's a bittersweet new trick because it really ticks her off. She's still working on getting her two front bottom teeth to come in so she is constantly chewing on things...beads, rattles, my hair, her clothes...well, she especially likes the little teethers that we keep in the fridge for her, but she gets SSOOOOO excited when I give her one that she can barely keep it in her hands long enough to make it to her mouth! I'll hand her one, and she starts squealing and cooing like crazy, shaking her hands all about, and tosses it at least three times for me to retrieve it before she finally settles down and gets it to her mouth. Of course, that's only if she isn't mad as a hornet by that time.
She also loves to look at herself, and we take a few minutes to visit the mirror in our bedroom whenever she wakes up from a nap. Today, I finally went down to the playroom to dig out some of the baby face books from Elsie's babyhood days, and Claira LOVES to look at them and "talk" to them.

Daddy broked his car

If you're walking out the front door of the church building, our house is behind the church building to the right. The areas in front of the church and our house are parking lot. Well, last night we were walking home from church (awful commute, I tell you ;) LOL!) and as we passed cars in the parking lot, Elsie pointed to each car and said, "That's not our car, that's not our car, that's not our car..." So, when we rounded the corner, she said, "There's our car!" So I said, "Yes, but where's Daddy's car? It's missing!" She responded, "Daddy broked his car on his way from work. It's gone."

For the Grandparents (and Aunt Sue Sue)

I got an email about how to leave a comment here so I'm posting a couple of pictures below to help explain it. Read the columns on the left then right side of each photo, and match the numbers of each step with the numbers in the picture. I hope that helps! We love all of you!

1. Click on the "x Comments" at the bottom of the post.

On the next page:
1. Type your comment in the box.
2. Click on the "Name/URL" circle.
3. Type your name in the box.
4. Click on the "Publish Your Comment" button.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Egg Cam

Courtesy of Sandi at BBC...check out the egg cam. Eggs hatching now so go and watch!

Elsie Girl

The Stage: Claira's napping. Elsie is playing puzzles in the living room. Mommy is checking her email. The house is QUIET. Mommy opens a YouTube video and turns up the volume. Elsie comes running into the kitchen, scared as a mouse with a cat on his tail, notices the video playing on the computer, laughs and says, "You startled me!"

Making Her Daddy Proud

It's never too early for fresh breath!

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Mint Crisp M&M's

Like chocolate? Like mint? Try 'em, you'll like 'em! Bonus, if you're the coolest person around because your favorite color is green (like me!) then you'll find them so pretty too!

Testimony Tuesday

I suppose the obvious testimony today is about Jason's accident. I'm still amazed by God's goodness. A frequent phrase in our prayers is "a hedge of protection." I suppose it's a reference to "A thousand may fall at your side, ten thousand at your right hand, but it will not come near you." You know the verse. I remember an email that was spread around the internet a few years ago about a mother hen who saved her chicks during a fire by wrapping herself around them. Of course, the mother burned, but she provided that hedge of protection around her babies, and they survived.
Our insurance company is supposed to be emailing us pictures of the car so I'll be sure to share them with you when we get them. Basically, the front of the car is all smashed in, the back of the car is all smashed in, and the middle is just fine, and it provided that hedge of protection we often pray for.
I'm thankful for all of the prayers and well wishes we've received. Jason is as good as new at this point. The staff in the emergency room had warned him that he'd feel much worse the days after the accident, but we've been happy that he feels better instead of worse and is basically normal now. He didn't even fill his prescription for pain meds. Praise God!

Monday, April 14, 2008

The You & Me Book

So, I told you I'd give you an update on the top secret project Elsie and I were working on for Jason's birthday. It was super easy, and she had so much fun doing it. I just cut some construction paper for the pages, and we decorated with markers, crayons, glitter glue, stickers, and photos. When we were finished, I took it to Office Max to have it bound. Elsie has all of her own answers memorized already so I can't wait until her and Daddy sit down to fill out his answers together. Anyway, here it is...Daddy loved it!

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Hold Your Husband

Give him a hug and a kiss, and tell him that you love him. Yesterday, Jason left work early because he needed to pick up some drawings at another company. Well, he was traveling on a 4 lane highway, and about two blocks from his work, he was stopped waiting for someone in front of him to turn left when someone from the right lane decided to switch lanes right into the back of my Jason's stopped car...and she was probably going about 50 mph. Of course, that rammed his car into the Expedition in front of him.
At the same time, I was nursing Claira when my phone rang so I sent Elsie into the kitchen to retrieve, I missed the call. It was a number I didn't recognize, but they left a voicemail. I listened and heard my husband. "Hey, it's me. I've been in an accident. I'm okay. My back and shoulder hurt. My cell phone battery is lost, and I don't know how much longer this guy will be here, but I'll call you again when I can."
I called him right back and a police officer answered. Jason was busy talking to another officer and couldn't talk, but I heard him in the background, "I'll call her back."
You ever have a moment when your entire world stops? I had one yesterday. I grabbed Elsie, and we prayed. "Bless it, nourish it for Daddy's accident. Jesus name. Amen," she prayed. Time seemed to drag on and stand still all at the same time as I made phone calls. Stephanie, can you watch Elsie? Aunt Angel, Jason's parents, Jason's boss-"I know he was supposed to pick up some drawings, and that isn't going to happen today." Aunt Angel (the GREAT) offered to come stay with Elsie at our house, which was great because she was napping by the time my phone calls were through.
I got another call from Jason so I knew what had actually happened and that they were taking him to the hospital to get checked out. By this point, I'm calm and peaceful and THANKFUL. I'm thankful that I serve a living God whose miracles aren't something of the past. My husband's car is totaled, and he doesn't have a scratch on him. Don't disregard the miracles that happen in your daily life. I don't believe in luck, and I don't believe in coincidence. I do believe in the power of God. I also believe in the power of prayer, and I'm thankful that I belong to a church where I've been taught to pray. I'm thankful that I'm faithful to pray. I called Jason as he was leaving work yesterday, and I muttered a few words when we got off the phone. "Thank you, Lord, for keeping my husband safe" That was it. Some days, I pray more than that, but it's usually very short. Actually, over time I'd say the prayer has become more like confirmation, trust, and a reminder to myself than a request of God. I'm just affirming what I already know. I'm thankful for the friends and family that we have here. I'm thankful that they're so wonderful and are willing to help us out with anything when we need it. Mostly, I'm thankful that my husband is still just that, my husband.
Jason called from the hospital just as Angel arrived at our house so I looked up directions, packed Claira up, and we were on our way. It took us about an hour to get there, and as I made my way around the hospital to the main entrance, I spotted Jason walking outside. He spotted me, and we made our way back to each other. He got in the car, and my whole world started again. He looks good. He looks like my Jason.
He's pretty sore, but he's in good shape. We made our way to the police station to pick up his driver's license and insurance card. Then, we made our way back home where Elsie was so happy to see us. Today, Jason went to the repair shop where his car was towed to clean it out and meet with our insurance agent for the assessment. We're believing for a big fat check.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Just Between Us

I wasn't around for dinner tonight...that's right, I finally (and I mean FINALLY) got Claira to nap this afternoon so I snuck out for a shopping trip when Jason got home. But, Jason told me this cute little story that I couldn't resist sharing. Jason made Elsie some grilled cheese for dinner.

Elsie- "Are you going to have grilled cheese too, Daddy?"
Jason- "No. Daddy doesn't like grilled cheese."
Elsie- "Well that's a cryin' shame."

In case there was any doubt, she's definitely my daughter.

Last time I checked...

we lived in the middle of town, not on a farm. Tell that to the animals! Remember the geese from a few weeks ago? Well, since then, they came and went, then about two weeks ago, they staged a sit-in. We could always find them on the property. Now, she's built a nest in the wood chip pile across the parking lot. You can see it in the background of the pictures. Anyway, she's always sitting on the nest, and he comes and's actually kinda sweet when I do spot him because he's usually just standing at the foot of the pile looking up at her. I can't imagine what they must be communicating to each other. Perhaps how many eggs she's layed or what she'd like for dinner. Who knows. Anyway, a few minutes ago, I spotted a pair of ducks wandering around the church yard as well. Seriously, it's just getting strange. I hope all of these animals start becoming friendly. Jason has been hissed at by the geese on multiple occasions!


That's what the oven clock said when we got up for the day. I know, I know...who sleeps in that late? But, rest assured that Claira woke up about 7 times between 11 p.m. last night and our wake up call this morning so I justify the extra hours. Actually, it was probably good for all of us to sleep in today. Elsie and Claira are both sneezing with a runny/stuffy nose. And, Claira adds a cough and teething to the mix. We've been one noisy household over the last few days. Jason isn't feeling well either so pray for some health to hit our household before this weekend and Jason's birthday extravaganza.
He's turning 27, but if you ask him, he'll probably say he's going to be 28 or 29 because he never remembers how old he is! Anyway, Elsie and I have been busy this week with our Top Secret Birthday Project. I'll have to post more about it next week when Daddy has already received it. In the meantime, we're having lots of fun.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Clever Girl

Here's Elsie's solution to my, "Just one more book, and then we're all done reading for now." I wonder if she chuckled to herself when she pulled it from the bookshelf.

Testimony Tuesday (in the making)

I know, I know, I've been slacking the last couple of Tuesdays. First, I was busy packing and then I was busy unpacking. But, hopefully, I'm back for another successful run of testimonies. So far, I've really enjoyed getting some memories of God's goodness "written down" for me to always refer back to. I'm so thankful for the evidence of God's hand at work in my own life that I should be able to gather some hope from within myself anytime I'm feeling down.

Today, I'm going to share a statement that Pastor Mike made several weeks ago. On Wednesday nights, we've been having a more classroom like service downstairs in the fellowship hall. We've got folders with handouts to fill in as Pastor Mike and Nancy do the teaching. Afterwards, we go upstairs for a time of corporate prayer, which is always powerful. Anyway, awhile back, Pastor Mike said something that has really stuck with me (though I still need some work on it.) He was talking about giving tips for services and said that Pastor Nancy and himself always give at least 20%. Here's the catch...even if the service is poor.

Now, I'll grudingly admit that I'm not the most generous person I know. If you ask Jason, he might tell you I'm not the greatest tipper. I guess I'd say I'm average. If a waiter/waitress is doing his job, I'll leave an average tip. If they're exceptional, I'll leave more, and if they provide poor service, you'll probably catch me leaving less of a tip. It seems fair, doesn't it? Well, I thought so until Pastor Mike explained his method. He told us that he never wants to miss out on an opportunity to be a blessing in someone else's life. As Christians, I feel like we're called to do this. God blesses us because He loves us, not because we've worked for it. We're called to walk in God's love, and we can do that by extending blessings, even undeserved ones, to others. I've probably received countless blessings that I would've missed out on had God been judging my work. So, this is an area I'm going to work on.

We haven't eaten out at many sit down restaurants since Claira has been born, but I know that's bound to change in the near future, and I'm going to do my best to stop judging the performance of our servers. Perhaps our overall experience will be instantly more enjoyable if I do. And, I absolutely believe that you reap what you sow. In turn, this testimony is in the I am able to bless more abundantly, I believe more abundant blessing will come to my family. Bring on the blessings!

Monday, April 7, 2008

Decisions, Decisions

I can't make up my me choose Claira's next carseat.

Elsie has this one:

The seat is great, safety wise, and I love the colors though they don't really hide the inevitable toddler mess that carseats endure.

Here are the seats I'm look at for Claira. They're all Britax Marathons, and I think they're all really cute...hence my lack of decision making.

Ashley Floral ($239): This seat matches the yellow fabric on Elsie's seat, but I'm a little nervous that the whole seat is yellow, and that's definitely the more problematic fabric on Elsie's seat mess wise.

Olivia ($239): This is cute and has the same color scheme as Elsie's seat...the majority of it is still yellow though like Elsie's.

Sunburst ($299): I can't seem to find this pattern on sale anywhere, but I think it's cute. It has some of the same colors as Elsie's seat, but it doesn't match as well as the other seats. I think it would hold up against toddler messes better, but it is more expensive than the others.

I really think I might need to pull Elsie's seat out of the car so I can wash the cover before I make a decision. If it washes well, then I'll probably just go with the seat that matches exactly...ugh! Help me decide!

Why look for something when you can just ask Elsie?

I just spent 10 minutes looking in nearly every room of this house for my phone. Finally, I asked Elsie where it was. "In the fridge," she said. Sure enough, it was in the fridge...cold, I might add. She's one goofy girl, I've got. It's a good thing I stopped to ask her because I never would've thought to look in the fridge.

Some other fun things I've found in the fridge...Elsie's cups and plates from her kitchen set, Valentine's Day cards, My Little Ponies, and books.


We had a very busy weekend. So, today is pretty mellow in comparison. On Saturday, Jason did some cleaning at the church and had prayer. In the meantime, I made some no-bake cookies, and then we went over to Eli and Janette's house to grill out. Oh, bring on the nice weather! It was a gorgeous day outside, and we spent much of the afternoon out on their deck.
I made a short trip to the mall, and then we went on a search for some teething rings for Claira...poor girls has been a fussy mess for a week. I told Jason that it must've been mercy from the Lord that Elsie didn't teeth until after she was a year old and her surgery was done.
Yesterday, we had church, and I went to the bookstore. Then, we had another church service last night with Ken Gaub. The service was really great, and he's incredibly funny. I couldn't help but admire his boldness while he narrated his history of turning every personal encounter from a nod in the airport to a request for directions into soul winning. It may be hard to admit, but I know this is an area I really need to work on. It's hard not to be confronted by that when you're hearing from someone who obviously prioritizes it. I, on the other hand, will admit that I pray about it daily, but I don't actively seek people out for God's Kingdom, and I certainly don't do it daily. In public, I'm quiet, and I tend to mind my own business. Jesus didn't do that.

Sunday, April 6, 2008

The end of an era

What happened to The Baby-Sitter's Club and Sweet Valley High? My little sister's seventh birthday and her growing interest in books has had me thinking back on all of the books I loved growing up. I know that both series had younger versions...The Baby-Sitter's Little Sister and Sweet Valley Kids, and I had planned to get the first boxed set of whichever I could find. Imagine my surpise when both seem to be unavailable. I've searched online, and today I went to the bookstore only to find that once familiar "Ann M. Martin" shelf displaying, not The Baby-Sitter's Club, but some series called Main Street instead. They didn't even have book #1! (You bet I would've bought it for myself if they had). Anyway, I'm sad. I read the BSC for years, and I remember catching up with her and anxiously waiting for her to publish another book. I can hardly believe that she discontinued the series or that it just isn't in print anymore, which seems to be the case since I can't find it available for purchase anywhere other than Ebay.

Friday, April 4, 2008

Daddy's Girl

Last night, I was in the mood for some vanilla ice cream, so Jason and Elsie headed to the grocery store in search of some. To display his courage, Jason opted to forgo the cart entirely and allowed Elsie to walk with him. They grabbed a basket, and Elsie, of course, had to carry it all by herself. So, they made their way to the freezer section, and Jason added the ice cream to Elsie's basket. Apparently, Elsie walked a few steps and said, "It's heavy. Take the ice cream out." So, Elsie carried the empty basket (all by herself), and Daddy carried the cold ice cream.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Best Friends

My friend, Stephanie, had some church shopping to do today so she dropped Lydia off at our house to play. Needless to say, Elsie was thrilled, and they really did play together well. It's so cute to watch girls so young really form a friendship. And, it's funny to see how girls act the way they do even when they're still so little. For instance, when Elsie and Lydia greet each other, it's not uncommon for one of them to say, "I like your shoes," or "that's a cool shirt." They're like little grownups sometimes. On the other hand, they have their girl drama moments as well. "Lydia's not playing nice, and she's not my friend anymore." Of course, they're usually hugging, giggling, and running around five minutes later. Girls will be girls, yes?

A typical playdate between the two of them is usually quite noisy, and it's no surprise to Stef and I if one or the other of them is in a foul mood. But, we usually leave them to sort things out, and they do a pretty good job until naptime sneaks up on all of us.

Today though, I was amazed at how well they were sharing...well, actually taking turns and using their words instead of just pouting or crying in angst when one had what the other wanted...just one more sign that our babies aren't really babies anymore. *sniffle*

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Just for fun

Elsie at 5 months:

Say it isn't so

Claira turned 5 months old yesterday. I can hardly believe that almost half a year has gone by since her birth. She's getting so big. My worries of her weight gain are long gone as the extra skin on her legs has been filled out with chunky baby rolls. It's quite cute! Right now, she loves to play Pat-a-cake, and she gets excited anytime we start to sing it. Luckily, Elsie knows it by heart, and she's happy to take turns entertaining Claira with me.

Here are some pictures of Claira taken yesterday...I couldn't get many good ones because she was a bit cranky yesterday. She's had several busy days lately.

My girls are growing up so fast! This morning, Elsie I was putting away some things in the pantry when Elsie asked me for a napkin to wipe her hands. I asked her to wait a minute, and she said that she could do it. So, she walked over to the counter and tore off a piece of paper towel perfectly. I think I just stood there in shock watching her as she knew exactly what to do, and she didn't even make a mess. It seems like yesterday I remember feeding her sweet potatoes from a gerber jar, and today she's cleaning up all by herself.