February Book Review

Well, folks…February has been quite the month. Theo started at the police academy on February 6th, Tera quit taking naps, and Kiah started screaming for several hours every night. Sooooooo I didn’t get hardly any reading done this month. I read several magazines, but I only read two books.

 

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The first one was 7 by Jen Hatmaker. This one came out a few years back and I loved it back then, so I decided to give it another read. I know that Jen Hatmaker has gotten a lot of flak recently from her and her husbands statements about Scripture supporting homosexuality. While I don’t agree with her take on this particular issue, I still think that she has got some things right- and I always appreciate being able to hear a perspective different from my own.

Anyways, 7 has nothing to do with that controversial matter, I just wanted to make it clear where I stand on that. Even after all the hype around this book has faded, I still loved it. I loved Jen’s light, easy way of communicating the hard subjects. I love the whole premise of the project and the idea behind fasting from seven different things for a month each. I love her thoughts on each one and overall this is one of those books that encourages me to step out of my comfort zone and really think about my actions in relation to my spirituality. I highly recommend this book to any believer!

 

The second book I picked up was Unbroken.

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I’m going to be honest…this book took me 3.5 weeks to read through because it is so DENSE. No detail was left out of the story of Louie Zamperini. His story is INCREDIBLE. I was shaking my head and bawling and just absolutely amazed over the resilience of humanity. This story is about a soldier in WWII whose plane crashed and he was captured by the Japanese and placed in a POW camp.  Again, it’s a very long book and very research-heavy, but so, so well written and fascinating. I have a new appreciation for my life and the freedom that we have in our country.

 

I think after those two I need to pick up something a little bit more light and fluffy! Hopefully next month I’ll have a few more books to review!

 

What’s Up Wednesday

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Just in case you missed my post last week, I’m breaking up with blogging. No, seriously. In case you haven’t noticed I’ve been doing a lot less content in general, and most of my content will be fun little posts like this that are mostly pointless except that I LOVE THEM. So I’m linking up with Mix and Match Mama and a couple of her friends for What’s Up Wednesday!

What we’re eating this week…

According to my menu planning, we are eating tacos, salmon + asparagus, chicken parmesan and a meal that my Mom made and stowed away in my freezer.

Reality is that we are eating lots of leftovers from our family reunion! Sandwiches, tacos, and more sandwiches! Ha!

What I’m reminiscing about…

A year ago I was in such a different place in life! We had sweet Abigail and I was so, so sick with morning sickness from Kiah. My, how things have changed!

 

What I’m loving…

I’m LOVING this weather!!!! I cannot believe it’s February in Ohio!!!

What I’ve been up to…

We just hosted the Hines Winter Retreat at our house! It was an absolute blast, although mostly insane! We had 9 extra people sleeping at our house, and most of the day there was 14 people. Phew!

What I’m dreading…

I’m dreading taking my driving exam. Yes, in case you hadn’t heard the story yet….my drivers license expired. And so expired is my license that I have to take the entire test (written and driven!) again. I passed the written with no problem and am now the PROUD owner of a permit. Which allows me to drive with a licensed driver over 21 and NO OTHER PASSENGERS in the vehicle. Um, this is not so conducive to being a Mom. My test is on Saturday and I’m just praying and praying that I will pass (I am perfectly confident in my driving, but I know there is always a potential to fail!)

What I’m working on….

I’m working on getting into a routine! This is Theo’s third week in the academy, but we have had some crazy weekends and some crazy events happen during that time, so I still don’t feel like I’ve figured out how to do this 9-5 thing.

What I’m excited about…

This sounds so lame, but I’m excited to get into the above mentioned routine! It’s been a few months of just chaos and up and down, so to just have a “regular” few weeks with absolutely nothing big on the calendar is so refreshing.

What I’m watching/reading…

We just finished Parenthood, so what else is there to watch that even measures up????

Oh, This Is Us!!

We are also watching a random assortment of things like:

Sharktank.

Flashpoint.

I have not been able to read very much this month, but I’m currently finishing up this one…

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Stay tuned for my book review tomorrow!

What I’m listening to…

I’m listening mostly to Podcasts! The Happy Hour is STILL my absolute favorite! Theo laughs at me for listening to it all the time, but I’ve caught him coming into the kitchen more and more often to listen along….

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When I turn on some music, it’s usually a worship Pandora station or my country music station on my ghetto radio in the kitchen!

What I’m wearing…

I’m attempting to wear through everything in my closet in that particular season. If I don’t wear it when it’s time to box up those seasons clothes, it gets donated. This also means that I am trying to get dressed every day with something from my closet. Usually it’s a nicer shirt with some comfy jeans!

What I’m doing this weekend…

Let’s see…Friday night will be our church small group. Saturday morning I will take my driving test (!!!!!), and then Sunday will be church and a potluck meal immediately after! I’m really looking forward to having a relaxing weekend.

What I’m looking forward to next month…

Theo’s birthday is in March, so that’s always fun! I’m always looking forward to Spring, too!

What else is new…

Not much! If you don’t follow me on Instagram/Facebook, you may have missed the announcement I made about our sweet Little Miss. Several weeks ago we were able to see her again as she came into town for a custody court hearing! She is now officially out of the custody of the state, and I have permission from her parents to post pictures and share her name! I probably won’t share too much more because I am really feeling the need to keep it private, but I might just drop a few pictures here and there! This seems like the perfect opportunity to do just that:

Bonus Question: What is your “can’t live without” beauty product? 

Ummmmmmm. Well, I’m a horrible beauty product person. BUT if I only put one piece of makeup on, it’s absolutely mascara! I recently bought this kind I’m really loving it…both the price and the product!

A Day in the Life

It’s been a while since I’ve done a day in the life post, and I thought I would throw one together again!

It’s so fun for me to look back on these posts and see how my life has changed or stayed the same.

In this current season, I have two very little ones (2.5 years and 4 months), and Theo JUST started a new job with a totally new schedule that we are adjusting to. I’m exclusively pumping and then bottle feeding Kiah, and that takes SO MUCH of my day. Literally, I feel like that is my entire day.

Here is a day in my life on Wednesday, February 15th 2017!

The alarm goes off at 6 and my faithful husband is up, showered, eating breakfast and doing devotions by the time I make it downstairs with Kiah around 6:30 (although to be fair, I was up at 2:30 and 5 with Kiah!). Theo leaves around 7 and then it’s just me and the kids for the day!

I grab my breakfast, feed Kiah and do my devotions.

Tera comes down the stairs at 7:30, and she’s a little bit sick today with a cold. Poor thing.

I have been working really hard to put away the phone and computer while my kids are awake, but I also struggle to get enough done in the morning before Tera wakes up. So if Tera comes downstairs before 8, I usually sit her down with some books and work on my blog.

At 8, I shut everything off and we get started with our day! First up: pumping. I usually end up reading while I pump. Sometimes it’s my Bible, sometimes it’s my book and sometimes it’s books for Tera. No matter what I do while I pump, both kids are usually pretty much on top of me.

Breakfast for Tera is up next! She plays with her stuffed animals while I get her food ready. I know it looks like they are just nicely sitting while I do things, but I assure you that I have to stop at least every minute or so to help one of them with something.

Breakfast and devotions for Tera! I read to her from a short kids devotional with a corresponding Bible verse. We also talk about the date and the weather. I don’t think she really gets it, but I just keep doing it every day and one day it will click!

Next up…feed Kiah! I’ve now been awake for about 3 hours and the ONLY thing I’ve done is feed children and blog a little.

I set Tera up with an activity so I can get some chores done because we have guests coming into town the following day. Usually Tera will do an activity at the table for 30-45 minutes, but today this lasted approximately 3 minutes. Meanwhile, Kiah conks out for his first nap of the day.

Chores, chores, chores! Laundry, changing sheets, cleaning the bathrooms, etc. What used to take me 5 minutes without children now takes me a looootttttt longer.

Today’s main chore is washing, folding and putting away laundry. Tera likes to “help”. Unfortunately, it’s not very helpful for me, but I just need to remind myself of the value of letting her learn how to do chores and help me.

I get about halfway through folding the laundry when Kiah starts crying for another feeding. I realize then that I have to wash his bottles before I feed him, so it’s off to bottle washing.

Feeding Kiah while reading to Tera.

Pumping again. I don’t even know what time it is at this point.

Finally finish folding the laundry, both kids are momentarily fed and content, so I take the opportunity to jump in the shower and actually get dressed. Thankfully, Tera is usually good enough that she just plays and I always take Kiah in the bathroom with me. Usually Tera ends up coming in and unpacking all the drawers, too.

It’s STILL the morning so I decide to tackle the mess of my kids room. I have some serious clothes sorting to do and of course Tera takes out about as much as I can put away!

Kiah was having NONE of it, so I pick him up and give him some undivided attention and snuggles. He got some shots the day before and my usually happy-go-lucky guy is pretty cranky today.

Finally get Kiah to calm down and he falls asleep. I throw together Tera’s lunch and she eats while I wash up more bottles and do some general chores.

Tera goes down for rest time (nap time is long gone) and I get myself some lunch. Kiah needs another bottle but I’m so hungry and I need to feed myself, so I prop up his bottle. I know…I’m a terrible mother. Meanwhile, Tera is upstairs NOT resting and doing all kinds of things she is NOT supposed to be doing, so I go upstairs at LEAST 5 times over the course of an hour to correct her. It was really frustrating.

Every time I go upstairs, this one starts to cry. Everytime I go back downstairs, the other one starts to cry. My lunch is cold and uneaten, and this is usually my blog time but it has been a really big struggle these past few weeks with the nap strikes and fussy babe.

I realize that it’s time for another pump so I get that done while I also catch up on some of my social media engagement groups. Kiah is finally asleep and not screaming YAYYY.

I realize that nap/rest time is not going to happen and I get Tera up. It’s time for Kiah to have ANOTHER bottle so we heat that up and I get started on the dishes.

I need to grab groceries so I load the kids up and head out the door. We are at the store for about an hour and then we are back! I’m so thankful for the warmer weather that requires at least a little less bundling than in the dead of winter!

We get back from the store and it’s about 5. Theo would normally be getting home by 5:30, but on this particular day he had to go straight to a foster care class. He would be home right after bedtime, around 8:30.

It was a little early for dinner, so I filled up the bath and let Tera play for a while.

King Kiah also got a bath while Tera played!

I am exhausted and the house is a disaster, so I put on a movie for Tera (and Kiah apparently). My rule is one movie a week, and I decide today will be the day! I whip up some dinner and just tidy up the house a little bit. Tera and I eat while watching the Veggie Tales movie and then I put her to bed and wait for Theo to get home.

Right after putting Tera down, I pump again and then the evenings are time for me to relax! Kiah always has a fussy time right around when we put Tera to bed. It’s incredibly frustrating because after bedtime is usually our time to finally have adult conversations or relax, but Kiah will cry nonstop from 8-9:30 and then it’s time for us to go to bed. I’m really soaking up all the baby stages this time around, but I will be glad to see this stage go!

Around 8:15, I get a call from Theo that he has a problem…our truck has broken down and he is stuck at a gas station. We randomly got a AAA gold membership offer for 3 months free, and we are SO THANKFUL that they sent a tow truck to tow it. Unfortunately, Theo had to wait for the tow truck for over an hour and didn’t get home until 9:45. Such a long day for both of us!

While I waited for him, I read my book (sneak peak of it above…I’ll have all the details on my Feb book list later this week!) and held Kiah. It was actually fairly relaxing, although I wish Theo had been there to relax with me.

I pump, feed Kiah and head to bed at about 10!

When Assent Isn’t Confirmed

I’ve had this blog post floating around in my head for MONTHS now. I just haven’t quite known how to write it.

Let me explain a few things before I dive in.

Doctors go through extensive schooling and are incredibly well-trained professionals.

However, doctors do not know everything. Doctors are also human and they ALWAYS bring their own opinion into things.

Let’s take Theo’s family for example. In his family are three doctors, three nurses and an EMT. Occasionally, conversations will come up about what should be medically done in a situation. Let me tell you what: more often than not, all three doctors will have different opinions or different treatment ideas. None of them are wrong, they just all come at it from a different angle.

Here they all are this past summer discussing whether or not sweet Emma should get stitches, and who should do it:

But back to my original point: It’s so, so dangerous when assent isn’t actually confirmed.

Let me explain what I mean.

As parents/patients, we all sign forms before receiving any form of medical treatment affirming our consent. The exchange goes a little something like this:

Nurse: Blah blah blah blah blah blah blah. Sign here.

Parent/Patient: Ok! *signs paper*

Assent is confirmed.

Woah. Woah. Woah. Stop right there.

Like I said above, doctors are wonderful people and I do believe that they are usually looking out for the best for their patients.

However, it’s EXTREMELY important that we as parents and patients are INFORMED of what we are consenting to.

Whenever our children are about to undergo a medical procedure, even one as simple as a breathing treatment, it is important that we understand WHY, WHAT will happen, HOW it will be done and that we know the potential side effects.

Last summer, I took Tera in to the pediatrician because she had a cold with a lingering cough that was keeping her up all night long. I wanted to get her tested for strep and pneumonia just to rule them out.  At the appointment, they tested her for strep and pneumonia, which were both negative. They listened to her lungs and told me that everything was clear, she just had a nasty cold that had to run it’s course. The next thing I know, the nurse is asking me what type of mask she would like for her breathing treatment. I was baffled. Breathing treatment? I immediately called Theo and asked him if he thought a breathing treatment was a good idea. I mean, they had just told me that her lungs were clear. I asked the nurse what was included in the breathing treatment, and she mentioned albuteral. A little red flag began waving in my head and thankfully I heeded it. I asked the doctor, “Do you really think she needs a breathing treatment?” And get this…the doctor responded, “No. It will just make her and you feel a little better.”

Um, what.

Here’s the thing. Most people around here know that I’m not a huge fan of our doctor. After the whole FTT issue and the above scenario, I’m sure you are thinking that I am taking my children to a incompetent jerk who has no idea what she’s doing. But that this not the case, I assure you. And I also assure you that there are many, many doctors out there who are recommending similar treatments that are simply not needed.

I had a friend ask me why this was such a big deal, and if it was going to make Tera feel better, why we didn’t accept it.

Here’s why. Albuterol is an addictive steroid that literally gives a high. It opens up the vessels in the lungs and makes it easier to breath when the lungs are tight from muscle spasms (like asthma). I know firsthand because I took albuterol for years as a child for my asthma. After an albuterol treatment, I would literally be shaking like I was on an adrenaline high. It is also highly addictive and our lungs learn to depend on it. Whenever we struggle to breath, our lungs can either get stronger, or become more dependent on an aid like albuterol. Of course, if and albuteral treatment is neccessary for my child, I’m 100% for it. I believe that God gave us modern medicine to use. But we need to use it wisely. But in this case, by the doctors own admission, my child did not need it. She wasn’t having any trouble breathing.

This is just one example in a long line of problems that I have seen in the doctors office. Another example would be the lack of information around vaccines. I’m not debating the issue of whether or not we should vaccinate. I’m simply saying that most doctors don’t inform their patients of what the vaccine is, what it’s for, what is in it, what the side effects can be, why it’s mixed with three other vaccines, etc. Or how about anti-biotics? They are actually so incredibly bad for us. Yes, they get rid of ear infections are neccessary when we have infections, but how many times have we taken them or given them to our children when their natural anti-bodies could have just as easily killed off the infetion?

Listen. I’m not anti-vaccine. I’m not anti-albuterol. I’n not anti-antibiotics. I’m not anti-doctor.

I’m simply pro-information. I’m pro-questions. I’m telling myself and my fellow parents that we cannot blindly trust everything a doctor says. We need to not live in fear of their extensive and well-deserved degrees, but instead stand up and ask for a little bit more information.

We need to make sure that we are informed before we consent.

For me, this looks like reading up on the vaccines before my child gets them. It looks like calling up one of the doctors in my family and asking them if this treatment option is a good idea. It means choosing a doctor who cares for our children and listening to them when they make recommendations, but also being willing to ask for more information. This means asking questions before signing on the dotted line. This means reading through the papers that the nurse handed me. This means asking which vaccines are going into my child’s body so that I know exactly what I’m dealing with.

Ultimately, though, there is another part of this. It means that I don’t put full confidence in my doctors. YES, they are way smarter than me and their is a myriad of very good reasons that I take my children to them. But ultimately, my full confidence in the health of my children is in the hands of the greatest Doctor, who knows all and sees all. He loves my children just as I do and nothing is impossible for him. He has given us human doctors to help us, but there comes a time when all human wisdom and medicine is nothing, and we have to turn from putting all our blind trust in modern medicine, and instead trust in Creator of our very lives.

Now, THAT is informed consent.

 

 

Hezekiah James: 4 months

 

1 year ago today….

we found out we were expecting our Hezekiah James!

And today….

Hezekiah is four months old!

Weight: 12 pounds, 13 oz……. WE ARE OFFICIALLY ON THE GROWTH CHARTS!!!

I may or may not have done a total happy dance in the office today when I saw that little dot ON THE CHART! No more stupid failure to thrive label!!! Kiah and I (and Theo) have worked HARD for every single ounce on that little body!

Eating:
My super chill, laid-back baby is still terrible at eating. He has to be at the right angle, fed by the right person and with the right bottle at the right temperature. Did someone say high maintenance?? He is doing much better at drinking more, but feeding him is still a battle. Some days we are on high ground, and some days we feel like he will never just be feeding like a normal baby. He eats 3-4 oz every 2-3 hours. Thank God for that 3, let me tell you. Four months of feeding a baby every two hours has been starting to get to me!

He refuses to latch back on to me, so it looks like it’s exclusive pumping from here on out. In Theo’s words, “at least it’s only 8 more months until we reach your goal of 1 year!”

Sleeping: You know…now that Kiah is four months old, I should probably try to get him on a good nap schedule. So far, he is literally just so chill that he naps in his bouncy seat while Tera and I are doing stuff around the house. He usually takes three to four little naps a day. He usually goes to bed around 10-11 and will sleep until somewhere between 3 and 5. Then, he’s up with me when I get up at 6.

Clothing/Diapers: I jjuuuuuuust pulled out the 3-6 month clothes, and it’s looking a little big on him still! But the 0-3 stuff is looking pretty snug, so we are at that in-between stage for sure!

Still cloth diapering, but I had to put away all the size 1 cloth diapers that we had! On to the one size, which still look massively bulky on him! He is finishing up a box of size 1 disposable diapers and then we are onto size 2!

Personality: I’m pretty sure that Kiah is going to be just like his Daddy. He is so chill and it’s pretty hard to ruffle his feathers. Besides his whole deal with eating, he is so low-maintenance. He’ so smiley and just loves being talked to. He’s often loud and expressive, and LOVES watching Tera play with toys.

Part of me wonders if he is really THAT easy or if I’m just a seasoned enough mother to enjoy all of these moments without focusing so much on the hard moments (because we absolutely do have those, too). It also helps that this is kid doesn’t have colic (I’m looking at you, Tera) or withdrawal from drugs (I’m looking at you, Little Miss).

Notable First This Month:

  • First plane ride
  • First trip to Florida

Likes:

  • Tera
  • Playing with the toys on his bouncy seat
  • Sitting in the bumbo seat
  • Bath Time
  • Talking

Dislikes:

  • Eating
  • Being left alone in a room (even if its for .5 seconds)
  • He’s not a huge fan of babywearing

Milestones Reached:

  • Sitting in the bumbo seat
  • Rolled over! He did this at least three times, but two of the times *may* have been with great assistance from his big sister. Not too sure.
  • Grasping toys
  • Chewing on his fists/fingers (I’m wondering if he is teething, but Tera didn’t get teeth until 11 months so this seems SO early to me! We shall see, I guess!)

What we are Loving at this Stage: Oh, sweet baby snuggles! I’m loving the coos and the grins and the giggles make.my.day. I’m loving watching him learn and grow rapidly and seeing him start to interact with Tera is SO FUN!!!! I’m loving the cute little man outfits and the grunts and even the toots (this does not apply as a teen, King Kiah). I love, love, love his little smile!!

What we are Struggling with at this Stage:
Let’s forever and always remember that I have such a hard time with the crying. I just get so worked up that I don’t know WHY he is crying and my brain goes into overdrive trying to figure out what he needs and why. I get myself so worked up and concerned and it’s just no fun. Then three toots later he is back to his happy self and I realize I had nothing to be concerned about. Repeat about once every hour or so. HA! I’m also NOT loving the lack of sleep. Somehow Kiah decided to celebrate Theo getting a new job by being up almost all night three of the five nights of Theo’s first week. That was not very fun! He seems to be doing better now but it was a great reminder to me that I do so much better when I can get a decent night’s sleep!

 

P.S. This is what trying to take pictures of Kiah really looked like…

Tera insisted that she was “in her parking spot” and it was the.end.of.the.world when I asked her to park elsewhere. Well, pardon me.

Breaking Up with Blogging

 

I can’t do this anymore.

This blogging thing.

For two years I have tried to make something out of it. I’ve worked tirelessly for endless nap times and late nights.

I’ve joined Facebook groups and Instagram groups with other bloggers.

I’ve learned so much about this blogging world from these groups.

And honestly? I’m done with it.

 

Here is just a glimpse at what it looks like to put a blog post out there:

  • Come up with an idea
  • Pitch the idea to a company who will sponsor it
  • Write the idea
  • Create catchy, pinterest-worthy graphics
  • Publish blog post at the right time of day
  • Publish social media posts alongside the blog post, but all at different times because each social media performs better at different times of the day
  • Post in engagement groups in order to get more views. In return, like and comment on (at least) 15 other people’s blog posts
  • Post in blog groups and ask beg for shares/views. In return, do the same for several other bloggers
  • Post on personal social media asking for shares/views

Is all that worth it?

Not for me.

I’m so burnt out from all this. I’m burnt out from contacting companies and hearing rejection after rejection.

I’m burnt out from reading and commenting on so many other bloggers, just in the hopes that one or two will come back to my site and leave a comment.

I’m burnt out looking at all my stats and telling myself that they just don’t measure up.

I’m burnt out because I want to post a picture, but all the “rules” say it’s not a good time of day.

I’m burnt out from focusing so much on making money. In the blogging community, it seems like if I don’t make $$ from a post, it wasn’t a good post.

So I’m done with this blogging thing.

Don’t get me wrong. This blog is sticking around.

But I’m going back to the old ways of blogging, where blogging was a journal/scrapbook and people read it because they wanted to. I want my blogging routine to look a little more like this:

  • Come up with an idea
  • Write about said idea
  • Share it on my social media when and how I want to, and not worry about doing it wrong or not getting enough feedback

Wouldn’t it be fabulous if I did this, and the people flocked to my site anyways? Yes, it would. Is that going to happen? Not likely. And I’m slowly learning to be ok with that. As much as this is a creative outlet for me, doing all the “right” things to get my blog out there is just burning me out and taking way too much time away from my family.

Do I still want to make a side income for my family? Yes. I’m desperate to try to contribute to our income, because God knows we need it. However, I’m not focusing on that as the primary goal for my blog. It’s tiring and exhausting and I have absolutely no interest in doing sponsored posts.

Do I still want to gain followers and see my numbers go up? Of course I do. However, I’m not going to waste my time working to gain followers. If you want to read this blog, you are more than welcome to. If youdon’t want to read it, that’s fine, too.

I’m going back to just writing from the heart and posting whenever the heck I want. I refuse to worry about whether or not my lighting is correct and my pictures are perfect and my posting time is ideal. Do I need to work on those things? Yes, I do. I’m not going to be a lazy blogger. But I refuse to let those tiny, inconsequential details run my blogging life.

Here at The Glorious Mundane, you will get real life. You will get posts written from the heart. If I ever mention a product it’s because I think it’s fabulous, not because someone is paying me to do (I might be getting paid, but I will only mention it if I do truly love it!).

 

I recently read an article that said that blogging was a dying art. I had to disagree because it seems to me that everybody and their aunt has a blog nowadays. However, as I continued reading, I realized that she had a point: It seems that the majority of blogs are for bloggers (link ups, blogging tips, etc). Hmmmm. So, out of curiosity, I would love to know….

Are you a blogger or a non-blogger? Why do you stick around? You know I LOVE to hear from you all!

 

**WOW, you guys have been responding like crazy to this post!!! I just wanted to add one added clarification: I am NOT against the bloggers who are hustling and making money from their gig!!! In fact, I am SO thoroughly impressed by these ladies and I read and support a number of these blogs frequently!!

 

 

 

 

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A Letter to my Police Recruit

I’m over on Love and Blues today sharing a letter I wrote to my police recruit on his first day!

Dear Police Recruit,

You looked so handsome this morning as I sent you out the door.

You tossed restlessly last night, and I laid next to you just thinking about all the new changes coming our way.

You woke up and showered and tied your tie in the bathroom mirror. We both smiled and exchanged those nervous glances. This is it!

You squared your shoulders and grabbed your lunch and then I kissed you goodbye.

It’s your first day at the police academy, and I am so, so proud of you.

 

Head on over to Love and Blues to read the rest!

 

Theo has now survived his first week of the police academy. I’m not going to lie…that was really intense. It’s a totally different world having a husband gone every day, and I’m going to admit that it’s not as easy as I thought it would be. I think that it will just take an adjustment period and we will loving it, but this first week made us feel like we were just tossed into a super intense washing machine and are being beaten up a little bit! Phew! I’m so glad it’s Friday!

Tera Evelynne: Two and a half!

I have done this blog posts for my kids since Tera was born (2.5 years ago today!), and you’d better believe that I’m not going to stop now! For the first year, I do a monthly post, and then for the second year I switch to every three months and now I’m doing every 6 months.

I cannot believe that my tiny little Tera is now TWO AND A HALF YEARS OLD. 30 months old.

From this:

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To this:

 

Weight: 25 pounds!!

Eating: Tera is a fabulous eater…when she wants to be. She has gone through several phases recently involving food that have frustrated Theo and I to no end. One was the “no chewing” phase, where she would put her food in her mouth and then REFUSE to chew and swallow. Thankfully, we worked through that one fairly quickly. Next, Tera went through a phase where she just refused to eat, period. Thankfully, she got hungry enough that that didn’t last too long, either. Now, we are in a generally picky stage. I have done some reading on it and read that it’s perfectly normal for her to be picky and that I just need to wait it out. She still eats a fairly wide range of things, but she won’t try anything new and veggies are a battle.

Otherwise, she is a fabulous eater and LOVES to pick what she can eat (Breakfast: Eggs or Oatmeal? Lunch: PB&J or Grilled Cheese?). She also loves to help me cook!

Sleeping: My 2.5 no longer takes naps. BOOOOOHOOOOO. Tera, if you are reading this as a young mother, I hope you know what you have done to me at this young age. No, but seriously. We took away her pacifier at the beginning of December, and she quit napping then. She will lay in her bed and sing and talk and play and jump around, but no napping. She probably actually falls asleep once a week. We are working on teaching her the new rules for “rest time”, and I’m adjusting to having a non-napper.

She sleeps GREAT at night…no problems there! 12 full hours of glorious rest, and then she pops up and is ready to GO!

Clothing/Diapers: We are in 24 months/2T and size 6 shoes. Tera is officially potty trained, but when we do wear diapers, they are size 4s.

Personality: Where do I even begin to explain this girls personality??? Oh, how I love her so. She is very reserved and observant when we are with other people, but she sure does shine at home! I would not classify her as “shy”, because she loves being around people. But when she is around people, she would rather just watch than join in. Many people have commented to me that they’ve never heard her say a word, but I can assure you that when she is at home, the words do not stop!!

This girl is intelligent and orderly. She is very particular about where things go and how they must be put away. She doesn’t need a bib to eat because she is so neat when she eats. She is responsible and I don’t feel like I have to hover when she is around Kiah. She does an excellent job mothering him. We also are fairly sure that Tera is left-handed! I’m interested to see if she sticks with that as she grows and how it will affect her personality.

This kid is hilarious and she knows it! She is getting to the stage where she says the FUNNIEST things, and I just love hearing the ideas that come out of her head!

Despite being laid-back, mild-mannered and so, so sweet, we have indeed hit the defiance of two. I can tell that Tera is really testing her boundaries, and this is SO challenging as a mother because I need to make sure that she has clear boundaries. I think for her personality, especially, she needs those boundaries to feel safe and secure. Tera is very black and white. If someone told her not to do it, she has a hard time doing it (unless she is being directly defiant, in that case…). When we had guests last weekend, they told their daughter that it was juice in the sippy cup (because you gotta do what you gotta do), when it was actually water. Tera was very quick to correct them: NO, it’s water! Oh, sweety. She is totally going to be that kid correcting all the other kids when she herself is breaking rules. I know because that was me! Haha!

Developments/Milestones:

  • Potty Trained!! Woohoo!
  • Speaking in full sentences
  • Can skip/hop, run and jump

  • Can button her own coat and put on her own shoes (it only takes 578 hours, but she can do it!)
  • Knows all of her basic colors, can count to 20 (with some help), can sing half of the ABCs

Likes:

  • Animals (when she sees one, she wants to pet it!)
  • Kiah (especially when she gets to hold him!)

  • Playing with Daddy
  • Going to the park
  • Being outside in general!
  • Seeing her cousins, Grandparents, Aunts and Uncles
  • Bath Time
  • PB&J, Mac and Cheese, Grilled Cheese, Cheerios, Sweet Potatoes, Chicken

Dislikes:

  • Napping
  • Obeying
  • Being asked to do something independently

What we are Loving at this stage: Oh, this stage is SO FUN! Tera is learning so much and I just LOVE seeing her own little person develop! She talks and talk and talks all day long and the things she says are SO FUNNY. She loves to help me and is my shadow wherever I go. She is creative and so eager to learn, and she loves being outside, just like her Daddy and Mommy. We are loving so much having a two year old.

What we are Struggling with at this stage: Oh, the defiance. It’s so hard to jump into this world of parenting/disciplining. Half the time we feel like we have no clue what we are doing. NO CLUE. But by the grace of God, we are seeking to be consistent and raise a child who understands right from wrong and also understands what consequences are, even if they are no fun. I also have to admit that i struggle with the constant shadow. Sometimes I just need a few minutes without someone needing me!

 

 

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