Sunday, April 1, 2012


A few days ago I went to the doctor for the 1st big checkup.........time to see baby #2. I had missed my period and had a positive pregnancy test and things seemed to be falling into place. I told my husband before I left I should be home with pictures and we both smiled.

So as I sat looking at the ultrasound in the exam room watching the doctor point at an empty dark spot where my baby should have been I wasn't really sure what to feel. Happy? Since as the doctor said there may have been something wrong at conception and the embryo never developed? Sad? Because I was never to know a baby that could have been? Scared? Because I would have to have a surgical procedure done to remove all the tissue that my body was continuing to develop thinking I was pregnant? I actually just sat there looking at the empty black hole and thinking that was kind of how I felt. Empty.

Thankfully my "empty" feeling didn't last long. Within seconds I felt the reassuring peace and comfort of the Spirit telling me it is all in God's hands. I found that as I let the Spirit fill me the emptiness turned into an overflow of peace.

Peace knowing God is in control of every aspect of our lives and we can be without worry or fear knowing His direction and control is perfect. And peace knowing even when the direction of life may not be what we expect we can know God will fill us with the deepest joy in the end. And peace knowing there is hope for a future filled with new possibilities and joys and normal ultrasounds.

No matter what the emptiness - Don't let the emptiness consume you. Be thankful the blessings and joys you have in the present and live in every moment. Know God has a perfect plan for your life all in His timing. And let the Spirit be your source of truth and comfort.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

101 ways to keep Tian from climbing the walls (literally)!

Now that Tian has started his new skill - climbing - I have realized the time has come for me to return to my teaching days. I thought I would not be doing lesson planning again for quite awhile but the time has come........daily preplanned activities for my little "over active" boy.

So I have decided to start posting the things we do and while I don't have 101 things that we have done yet, probably by tomorrow I might:). And thanks to my new favorite app (Pinterest) lesson planning has been pretty easy! And I have also realized messy stuff is pretty easy to cleanup if it keeps a toddler occupied for more than 2 minutes.

#1 - Indoor Sandbox (made with flour and baby oil) that kept Tian busy for 45 minutes!

#2 - Homemade Finger Paint or if it turns out more like slime go with it.

#3 - Cook up some soup

#4 - Go Outside

#5 - Go Outside (to a playground)

Saturday, March 3, 2012

18 months

18 months have passed since Tian Elliot came into the world and I sometimes try and remember what life was like when he wasn't here. I can't quite remember those diaper-free, sleeping through the night, and sleeping in on Saturday days! But then again why would I even want to.......Life has forever been changed and in a good way:)
As Tian continues to grow it is so much fun to watch him learn and develop. Some of my favorite moments are watching him discover new things making me appreciate and wonder more at the simple things around me.
Like in other month posts I always like to post some highlights for the last several months but this time I thought I would share some favorite events and some not so favorite events. Regardless they all brought many laughs:)

Favorite things of the last 2 months........
1. Tian riding in the shopping cart car at Giant.
2. Trying to work more on Potty Training (Yeah - Tian learned to sit down on his potty by himself and enjoys getting stickers for using the potty correctly!)
3. Tian starting to dance more to music and singing La La's.
4. Tian starting to communicate more verbally. Like when he wakes up and walks over to the stairs and starts yelling "dada" to see if dada hasn't left for work yet. Or saying "out please" to get out of his high chair. Or chasing the cat around the house and yelling "kitty" at the top of his lungs.
5. Tian's new interest in coloring and scribbling. A nice sit down relaxing activity for Tian and mama:)

Least favorite things of the last 2 months......
1. Tian no longer wanting to sit in normal shopping carts while mama shops but instead squirming and screaming to be let out of the cart. Needless to say there haven't been too many shopping trips except to Giant.
2. Trying to work more on Potty Training (When Tian didn't quite sit down on his potty in time and I walked into the room to find a little pile of something NEXT to the potty.)
3. Tian's first stomach virus and mama's first time getting vomitted on.
4. Teething that never seems to end and when will the teeth pop through?
5. Tian's new ability and fascination with climbing on EVERYTHING........toilets, couches, chairs, coffee tables, etc.

Happy 18 months Tian!

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Won't You Be My Neighbor

The other day I was contemplating how few non-Christians I know. With a recent challenge to pray for lost friends and acqaintances at our church I actually struggled a bit thinking of people to pray for. It came down to some distant relatives who I know need to find a relationship with Christ but other than that I couldn't think of anyone I see in my daily circle that I could pray for. (Side note: I think it is important that God laid my relatives on my heart and they need prayer just as much as anyone else. I was just questioning why I have so few lost people in my daily life to reach out to.)

Then it hit me while I was sitting at home hanging out with Tian looking out the window. (Yeah sometimes I feel like that little nosey old lady who is always looking out her window at what others are doing.......but hey entertaining a toddler all day long can get old.) A voice that has been stirring in my heart for awhile speaks again....."You have plenty of lost people around you everyday that you could reach out to." The handicapped man who lives all alone, the pregnant teenage girl living with her family, the dad who lost his wife in a car accident and is raising a 1 year old, the young family with 2 toddlers, the elderly couple who love to sit outside and enjoy nature. There are plenty of people out there that you see everyday and need to know me - Your neighbors.

And the stirring in my heart is right. These people are lost and need a light in their lives and just maybe that could be me. And the stirring gets me excited. But it quickly is diminished by feelings of fear and doubt as to how it could ever happen. How would I ever build relationships with these people. Yes I can do the occasional hi how are you talk but something more than that? Do I just go up and knock on their door and invite myself in or invite them to church? I quickly realize it needs to be a little deeper than that. And lately I have been finding out how it can be..........through the fearlessness of a toddler.

Everytime Tian and I go outside Tian quickly gets bored with our yard and decides it's time to go explore somewhere else. Does he have any hesitations about the new surroundings he is going in or the new people he is going to meet. No. He is excited to go and share with them in whatever they are doing. So this usually means I am there tagging along and it is amazing how an energetic, happy toddler can make anyone smile.

I need to be more like that toddler. Happy, excited and enthusied at the possiblity of going to visit and spend some time with my neighbors and share in their lives. Yes I need to get out from behind the window and begin to share in the lives of my neighbors.

So to leave the challenge in the words of a Fred Rogers and because songs always stick with me...........

Won't You Be My Neighbor
It's a beautiful day in this neighborhood
A beautiful day for a neighbor
Would you be mine
Could you be mine

It's a neighborly day in this beauty wood
A neighborly day for a beauty
Would you be mine
Could you be mine

I've always wanted to have a neighbor just like you
I've always wanted to live in a neighborhood with you

So, let's make the most of this beautiful day
Since we're together we might as well say
Would you be mine, could you be mine
Won't you be my neighbor
Won't you please, won't you please
Please won't you be my neighbor

Monday, January 30, 2012

Tian's Top 10 favorite toddler apps

After a month of using the new family IPAD (thanks to Uncle Adam) I thought I would take a moment and share some of our favorite toddler apps we have found for Tian. I am always searching the web for other moms' suggestions on toddler apps and thought I would share some of ours for the benefit of other moms. Most of the apps we tried for free then bought the full versions as we saw how much he enjoyed them.

10. City Vehicles - Free trial version or purchase the full app. What little boy doesn't like trucks and cars honking and driving on a road?
9. Color Drops - Free app for coloring on a blank screen or coloring pages to choose from. Great for doodling toddlers.
8. Piano Cats - Free app with cats as the keys on the piano that meow the pitches of the notes. Most likely one of Tian's favorites since these cats will actually let him touch them and respond back to his screams.
7. Explore the Animal Kingdom - Free app with animal pictures and animal noises.
6. I Hear Ewe - Free app with animal picture graphics and animal noises as well as some vehicle graphics and vehicle noises.
5. Tempo the Tiger (Baby Genuis) - Free trial version or purchase the full version. Has a great echo feature where you can talk to Tempo and he repeats what you say. Tian thinks this is hilarious.
4. Peekaboo Wild - App must be purchased. Different and unique animals than any of the other Peekaboo apps.
3. There's a Lion in my Backyard - Free trial version or purchase the full version. Another app to search for animals with great animal sounds and fun graphics.
2. Peekaboo Forest - App must Be purchased. Really beautiful animal artwork by Charley Harper. Great music and animal sounds as well.
1. Peekaboo Barn - Free trial version or purchase the full version. Great animal noises and animal graphics and definetly Tian's most played app.


So I have been in this funk recently where I have just been having a "whoa is me attitude" towards several things in life. I could have chalked it up to the pain medication after my foot surgery or I could have blamed it on the dark winter months but no I realized it was a little more than that. And today (like the sunshine breaking in the windows from outside) God has brought light into my heart to help me out of the funk.
So you may ask what did it involve.........

1. Me being willing to listen to Him.
2. Taking the initiative to do what He asked......start a prayer journal and journal of Thanksgiving.
3. Him taking away the funk and providing light through that yuckiness.

So if you are going through a funk check it it really the winter blues or that bean burritto you just ate? Or is there a little bit more of a heart issue that needs dealing with. Let God clear out the funk.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

16 months

What a great 2 months we have had since the last blog I posted. Tian is now 16 months and over the last 2 months has done a lot. He celebrated Thanksgiving and Christmas as a 1 year old and was a little more aware of things than last year when he was 3 months old. For Thanksgiving we got to spend the day with my parents at a Thanksgiving buffet and it was wonderful. There was no cooking or cleanup involved so we were able to just enjoy family and have a nice peaceful day:) And since I never posted a Thanksgiving blog I thought I would just take a moment and share my top 5 things I am thankful for this year.
5. Being able to stay at home with my son and share in his daily experiences and adventures.
4. Wonderful Family (Mouers and Hertleins) and the time we get to spend together throughout the year even on SKYPE:)
3. Loving and Supportive Husband who is a wonderful provider for our family, hardworker and great father.
2. Good health for myself and my family throughout the year.
1. Joy of my salvation and peace of knowing God is in control of my life.
We are truly blessed and I thank God everyday for all he has given me in my life - everday is a blessing.

Over the last 2 months we have also been going through a kitchen remodel and things are finally starting to look like a finished product as I write this. While it has been somewhat difficult not having a dishwasher, kitchen sink or stove we have made things work with a crockpot and microwave and have a had a little fun in the process. And while it has been somewhat difficult keeping a curious 1 year old from open walls, wet paint, nails, will be all worth it when the finished product is done and he has a new kitchen to explore:) Thanks to my husband for planning such a great kitchen design and working so hard on making it so nice for us! Cooking is going to be fun!

Tian and I started decorating for Christmas around Thanksgiving time so we have been enjoying Christmas for awhile. This year I bought a 4 foot white Christmas tree with felt, soft and non breakable ornaments so Tian could play with the tree. And it was a good thing because the first day we put it up he pulled the tree onto himself and was taking off the ornaments and throwing them. Since then it has calmed down some and now he just likes playing with the animal ornamets that are on the tree and pointing at them and making the sounds they make. What fun:) We also put up some window clings that he loves playing with and pretty much ALL baby proof decorations. We will have to wait a couple years to put the silver Christmas tree back up and some of the other decorations.

We also had a great time with our families over the Christmas weekend. We spent 2 days with my family the Hertleins and 2 days with the Mouers. Tian's favorite present from mama and dada seemed to be a small wooden train that he opened and played for a record 15 minutes straight saying choo choo over and over. His Christmas was also filled with many tractors thanks to the grandmas, a basketball hoop so he can start early, and lots of fun time playing with cousins, uncles, aunts and grandparents. What a wonderful 2 months and year we have had.

At 16 months Tian is understanding a lot and starting to communicate pretty well.

He continues to amaze me daily and is such a fun little boy.

Looking forward to 2012 and all the fun in store for us.
Happy New Year!