Friday, July 31, 2009

7 Quick Takes Friday (vol. 5)


It's been a weird -- and itchy -- week. Jonathan and I woke up Tuesday morning covered in an extremely itchy rash. My first thought was that we had a reaction to something we ate. But, I couldn't think of a single thing out of the ordinary that we had eaten in the last day or so. The rash continued to spread throughout the day so I called and got Jonathan an appointment with the pediatrician and I was already scheduled for an appointment with my OB for the next day. Both the pediatrician and the OB made the same diagnosis; Jonathan picked up poison oak on a cub scout nature hike over the weekend and transferred it to me. But, that diagnosis didn't sit completely right with me. My rash was actually worse than Jonathan's and it was all over me, like I had rolled in the stuff instead of just picking it up second hand through casual contact. The next morning (Thursday) the pediatrician called to say that Jonathan's strep culture had come back positive. So, it turns out that both of us have strep (not poison oak) and the only symptom is the itchy rash! Weird.

So, just be aware that strep can present itself in strange ways. I also remember that the daughter of a friend had strep a while back and her only symptom was a stomachache. You just never know.


My kids go back to school in less than two weeks. Texas has a law that public schools cannot begin classes until a week before Labor Day, but that doesn't apply to private schools. Our school seems to beginning early than any of the other private schools (August 13th). But we also will be done in May and I really appreciate the extra time we get off around Easter.

How do you homeschooling moms decide when to start up school again?


We had a wonderful family vacation at a Texas lake last week. Most of Eric's side of the family was there and we were even blessed with a break from the sweltering heat we have been having this summer. It was a very simple vacation; no major events were planned, we cooked all our own meals and it wasn't very expensive. Still, I am so thankful that we are able to do it. We very rarely had vacations when I was a kid growing up. If we did travel, it was usually to see family. But, for a long time money was very tight and even the trips to see family stopped (all of our family was far away in Nebraska and Colorado). So, I really appreciate even these simple vacation experiences that we are able to give our kids.


If your looking for a good movie for you and your hubby to enjoy one evening, I would recommend Bottle Shock. Some of my favorite actors are in it (Bill Pullman and Alan Rickman), it's based on a true story (but isn't cheesy) and both Eric and I enjoyed it. It can be so hard sometimes to find a movie that both the husband and wife like, so I thought I'd pass on this recommendation!


According to my allergist, about a third of pregnant women have their allergy symptoms improve during pregnancy, a third stay about the same and a third get worse. Unfortunately, I am in the later group. I have to say, some times I am amazed at the copious amounts of snot that my nose is able to produce. Seriously, if scientists could come up with a way to use snot as a fuel source, I'd be a billionaire and would be able to power at least half of the Houston metroplex.


I apologize for #5!


My 20 week ultrasound is scheduled for August 19th. Will we find out the sex of the baby? I don't know. I guess you'll have to check back in and find out! :)

Make sure you click over the Conversion Diary where Jen is hosting 7 Quick Takes Friday!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

A very different pregnancy

This pregnancy has been very different than any of the others. I'm not just talking about how I feel physically this time around, which has been a daily adventure, but my mental state has also been very different. I was trying to articulate the difference to Eric the other day when I said, "I completely aware that I'm pregnant, but I seem to forget that I'm having a baby."

Does that make any sense at all? I think life has been so insanely busy lately that I've hardly had the opportunity to relish the idea of a new baby. I can recite the litany of pregnancy symptoms that I have been dealing with, but I have barely given a moment's thought to names or godparents or what it will be like to hold a newborn once again. I feel guilty because I often forget that there is a child, a living soul, residing in my belly. In previous pregnancies, I was much more aware of the life growing within me (I'm now almost 17 weeks along).

I hope that these feelings will change soon. I'm now feeling Button move, which is a wonderful reminder of the baby in my belly. Also, I'm beginning to look forward to school starting again and our lives falling into more of a routine. I don't think we'll be any less busy, in fact as meetings and organizations begin again we will get even busier, but there will once again be a predictable rhythm to our days. I'll be able to look forward to quiet times in my day where I can think and plan, anticipate and pray. I think I just need to a little time to myself so that I can fall in love with this precious, new baby.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

The House

Here are the long promised pictures of our new house in all it's cluttered, recently moved-in, still unpacking glory. Let me take you on a tour.

Here's the living room. There is no carpet on the first floor; it's all laminate and tile. The wall with the fire place was painted with a very dark brown faux finish. I think the previous owners must have paid a professional to paint it, there was at least four different colors used and one of them was metallic. I felt a little guilty covering it up, but the fact is that I hated it. To me it looked like someone smeared poop all over the walls (sorry for the graphic description!) and it made the whole house feel very dark. I opted for a soft creamy color instead. It's much lighter, brighter and more soothing.

If you ever want a very clear picture of just how messy a room is, try shooting it from above. Eeek!

This is the breakfast room. It also was painted the faux poop brown. I painted it a pale sage green. Except, I think it turned out too pale, you can hardly tell there is any color at all. I think we may repaint it a slightly darker shade.

Here's the kitchen, also formerly poop brown. With the dark cabinets, counter tops and flooring, it felt like a cave.

It's now the same color as the breakfast room. The cabinets are very nice custom cabinets, 42" high in a cherry finish. They are beautiful! But, honestly, if I could have my way I would paint them white. I know, I know, to paint such cabinets would almost be a sacriledge and Eric has already vetoed the idea. But, I just love light, bright kitchens! It will take me awhile to get used to all the dark.

Here's the dining room that will serve as our office. It was a dark green with some kind of purple glaze sponged over it (yuck!). They even had the trim painted black! This room isn't finished being painted yet, but it's now the same creamy yellow as the living room.

Here's the master bedroom. It's in need of some decorating TLC, but I love this room. It's hard to tell, but there is actually a window seat. Sweet!

This is Elizabeth's room, her very first room of her own. For her birthday (which was the day we moved) she got new bedding and we painted her room first (it was a little boy's room with red and blue verical stripes). When I finally buy a rod, there will be curtains at the window and hopefully soon we'll find something to put on the walls.

Here's the boys' room. It's hard to tell from the picture, but it is actually very large. I plan to paint the walls a pale blue.

This room will remain a guest room even after Button's arrival. As you can tell, it used to be a little girl's room. I can't imagine how much time it took to paint all those dots! It's very cute, but way too much for me. I haven't decided on a color for this room yet but it will be a light, soothing tone.

This is the game room (I must say, it is awesome to have a game room!) There is a faux finish in puke brown (not much better than the poop brown that was downstairs) on the walls and I think I'm leaning toward a pale blue in this room, too.

On to the outside. Here's the awesome porch I mentioned. Even in the extreme heat of this summer, we've enjoyed sitting out there first thing in the morning and when the sun is setting. It's so peaceful!

Here's the entire front of the house including the scraggliest, most pathetic tree ever. Eric has spent hours researching trees and which type would be best for shade trees in our area. This house is completely lacking is shade and we hope to plant some new trees in both the front and back yards in the fall.

Here's the kids' favorite feature of the house. The previous owners left this awesome playset in the backyard for us. They play on it every day!

Here's the one little vegetable bed that we've made so far. I picture 4 to 6 of these lined up on this side of the yard eventually. With all the sun our west-facing backyard gets, I can't wait to see what kind of vegetables we can grow!

I have to say again how very blessed we are to have this house. Our old house sold so quickly because it's in a niche market of houses that are moving right now (small, one story starter homes). And, because the rest of the housing market is depressed, we got an incredible deal on this new house. I never thought we would be able to afford a home this big and nice. I am still in awe at everything that has happened in the last three months!

I hope you enjoyed the tour. Could you answer one question for me though? Would it really be that horrible to paint the kitchen cabinets? Just curious.

Friday, July 10, 2009

7 Quick Takes Friday (vol. 4)


I'm working on getting pictures of the house for you all. I go to start taking pics, but I can't make myself do it when there is clutter everywhere, even though it will be more honest to do so. I'll get them soon. Either I'll get the house picked up or I'll just swallow my pride. :)


Speaking of taking pictures, we've been so busy for the last two or three months that I've hardly picked up my camera. I've really missed my photography hobby. I posted a picture on my flickr account for the first time in a long time today. It felt really good.


One of our first tasks once we got all moved in was to build a small vegetable bed. We moved out just before our old garden started producing and we really want to try to get a small garden going for the second half of the summer. We've only planted one thing so far: basil. We have fallen in love with fresh basil and use it in a bunch of different recipes. I also found a recipe for freezing pesto (you have to blanch it before freezing otherwise the basil will turn black) and then we get to enjoy it throughout the winter months. Even the frozen pesto is far superior to store bought and it is much, much cheaper.


My pregnancy nausea is completely gone now and the first trimester fatigue is even beginning to fade. I feel like my brain is emerging from a three month long fog. I've been more productive in the last two days than I have been in weeks!


We love Jelly Telly! It's a website created by Phil Vischer (the founder of Veggie Tales) and everyday has a new 30 minute Christian based video. It's humorous, educational, inspirational and a great occupier of kids while mom tries to get a little housework done. My kids sing the songs all day long and they can now even recite the books of the Old Testament in order all the was up to Chronicles. Check it out!


I love two year olds! They are so cute, are learning so fast and are constantly coming up with something new. I'm enjoying Gustin so much right now! When Elizabeth was two, I was pregnant with Gustin and extremely sick and, unfortunately, I don't remember much of her two year old shananigans. I'm loving every minute of it this time around!


I thought I would be sad leaving our old home. All three of our kids were born while we lived there and we made so many memories. When we left it for the last time, we gathered as a family and Eric led us in a short prayer of thanksgiving for that house, for all our blessings and for the new family who will be living there next. It's a wonderful memory that I will cherish. But, I wasn't all that sad. It's hard to be sad about things we're leaving behind when we have so many wonderful things to look forward to. We have a fantastic new home and another baby on the way. God is so very good.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009


Well, we made it. We're all moved into our new house, and thanks to our wonderful extended family, half of it has been repainted and we're mostly unpacked.

I thank God everyday for this house. Not only are we so much closer to school, church and Eric's work, the house is also much bigger and has so many amazing features that I love. For instance, this morning it rained (so desperately needed, we haven't seen rain in months!) and the kids and I sat outside and watched the rain from our front porch. Yes, a front porch! I've always wanted and nice big front porch and now I have one and it is so completely awesome!

I could go on and on about our amazing new house and how greatly God has blessed us, but the truth is that there is still so much to do and there's not much time for blogging. This morning I've been on a mission to track down my kitchen wall clock, envelopes, my recipes and our family portrait so I can get it hung over the mantle. So far I'm 0 for 4. Time to go dive back into the boxes!