Thursday, April 28, 2011

Easter and Birthdays

As I mentioned in my last post, we celebrated Benjamin's second birthday this Saturday. Then on Sunday, we celebrated Easter. My in-laws came in from Florida last Wednesday and stayed for six days. So it's been busy but fun!

For Benjamin's birthday, we went with a music theme because he loves to sing and dance. My mother-in-law cooked a crazy amount of amazing Filipino food, which is typical for special events in their culture. My mom always made our birthday cakes growing up and so I have continued the tradition. This year's cake was a special challenge. The idea itself was very simple: a sheet cake with simple icing and piped music notes/designs on the top. The fun began when the cake refused to pull away from the pan (even though I'd used cooking spray as instructed). Several chunks from the top separated when I pulled the pan off. I pieced them back together with icing. Because it had broken in so many places, as I iced the cake, crumbs were everywhere. My white icing was quickly speckled with chocolate cake. Solution? Add more icing delicately enough to cover it. Good thing I had extra. Then came the decorating. Apparently I didn't use the right type of icing or something because it was completely losing it's shape as I piped it. Stars were blobs. I was very frustrated and moments from tossing the whole thing in the trash and ordering one from the grocery. But God gave me grace and determination. I pushed through and in the end, though it wasn't as great as I'd planned, it worked. :) Check out pictures of the cake and the party here.

Easter was great. Church in the morning. Lunch at the Golden Corral (no cooking!). Afternoon nap. Egg hunt inside (it's rained for about 12 of the last 14 days - seriously). Pictures from Easter and other recent fun here.

Our biggest parenting challenge lately has been Benjamin. Reaching the two year mark, he's very much a two year old. He's challenging us in about every way he can. Tantrums and whining have become daily issues that we're trying to nip in the bud. It's been a real challenge and very draining for sure. But then I look at my almost four year old and remember that consistency really pays off in the end. It's just gathering enough energy to be consistent as we should in the moment. Some days are better than others for sure!

Until next time...
Take Care,
Terra

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Overwhelmed

The last few weeks continued to be a little overwhelming. By God's grace, as I'm writing this, things have gotten much better. As I've mentioned before, I nanny a little boy who's 2. Occasionally, I have his 4 year old brother as well. The days that I watch them are scattered throughout the month. This month, the great majority of the need fell at the beginning of the month. At the same time, my husband started having some severe hand/wrist pain (which he's always been told is arthritis). It usually only flares up every 2-3 months. It's flared up 3 time in less than a month this go around and has lasted longer than any previous flare up. When it happens, the pain pretty much puts him out of commission. Then my mom moved out. She's been living with us for the last year until she could get a place of her own. She's been such a huge help around here on a practical level. So all at once, I lost four of my helping hands and had 2 extra kids about twice as often as usual (making it 5 kids ages 4 to 6 weeks in my home). As you could imagine, I was quickly overwhelmed.

But again, God has been good and helped me through it. Now, I've only got the youngest boy once per week until May. My husband's hand is still tender but not in the all out pain it was in. He's been really serving us around the house in any way he can. He's going to follow up with two specialists to try and figure out what's going on. I had a friend volunteer to watch the kids (all of them!) one morning so I could have a little personal time (in which I ran errands). Another friend even offered to make my grocery runs! My mom is still babysitting for us once per week so we can have our date nights. My bow business has picked up so I'm busy with that. But I'm not complaining because that's what I've been hoping for! I'm having to remind myself regularly that I'm NOT super woman/wife/mom and no one except myself expects me to be!

Which brings me to my posting. I was planning to write weekly but it looks like I've been doing better with a bi-weekly schedule. Hope that's okay!

Next week will be busy as my in-laws, some cousins and my sis' family will all be visiting. We'll be celebrating Benjamin's birthday the day before Easter (it's actually on the 28th) and then enjoying Easter together the next day. I'm SO looking forward to seeing everyone though!

Until next time... here are pictures of Sophia's baby dedication as well as the circus and other fun stuff in the month of March! http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=272502&id=607147099&l=48997e038d


Take Care,
Terra

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Busy Busy Busy

So it's been a VERY busy few weeks! We weren't as busy when the baby was born because we knew better. However, now that things are back in the groove, we've fallen right back into the crazies. I'm nannying again. I'm kicking my hairbow business (joybowtique.blogspot.com) into full swing. We jumped back into our church activities (my husband is a lay pastor and we help with the counseling ministry). Then of course just having 3 kids ages 3 and under is enough to keep us busy!

Since the last time I wrote, I found out one of my dear friends is having twin girls! She's had a long road of secondary infertility so this was extremely exciting.

This weekend, we're having our youngest (Sophia - 6wks old) dedicated at our church. We'll have some friends and family visiting for that. Then in just a few weeks, we'll be celebrating our son's second birthday. Then Easter. Then the Kentucky Derby. Then Mother's Day. Then our oldest's fourth birthday - Memorial Day weekend. Then Father's Day. Then Vacation. Then a break. Whew!
I went on a women's retreat this past weekend. That was great. They had a nursing mom's opportunity. So I was able to go, have my own room and bring Sophia. It was fantastic! The speaker was great. It was funny because people kept telling me how brave I was for coming with a newborn. In my opinion, it was a vacation to be away for 24hrs with just ONE kid and not all three!

A few nights ago, we had the opportunity to go to the Ringling Bros. circus with tickets we won from a local business. The kids really enjoyed it. I'm realizing in my "old" age that I don't like being around that many people any more often than I have to be! There were SO many people. Benjamin, my usual happy-go-lucky kid, was terrified by the sheer quantity of them. He insisted on being held and would not walk. So James and I were both carrying kids and Hannah fortunately walked! I'll try to get pictures uploaded soon so you can see them next time. About half way through, Hannah said, "Mom, when I grow up, I'm going to be a clown." Funny stuff!

Until next time...
Take Care,
Terra