Saturday, December 31, 2011

The Saturday 7

I can't believe I forgot to do one of these last week! Yes, it was Christmas Eve, but we didn't have plans until evening. I pretty much just sat around my house all day. Can't believe blogging never crossed my mind. So sorry to all my devoted fans! I guess this week will be a recap of the past 2 weeks.

1. Christmas was so fun with Lucy this year. She loved opening presents - at least for the first hour or so. I had to open her last few presents for her. She also loved all the treats. She ate so much candy. Haha. And we discovered her love of pickle wraps! So weird! On Christmas Eve at my parents' house, we had tables and counters full of snacks, but all she wanted was the pickle wraps. Crazy kid.

2. The day after Christmas, we unloaded everything and made room for all Lucy's new toys. Our house looks like a toy store. Haha. She got a lot of big stuff - a kitchen from us, a medical trolley from Chase and Lyla, and a nursery for her babies from my parents - I've never seen one before, but Lucy loves it. It's a crib with a sink on one side and a high chair on the other. She also got a baby stroller from Aunt Libby. Her babies are set. Haha. She loves all her new toys, though. It's so cute to watch her play pretend.

Oh, and if our living room looks like a toy store, then Lucy's closet now looks like Baby Gap. Lol. I had to clear out half her old clothes to make room for all the new clothes from Aunt Niki. She seriously wore a new outfit every day this week thanks to Aunt Niki. The fact that Niki never had any girls really works to our advantage. ;-)

3. Here's the weekly health update: all day on Christmas Eve Lucy had awful diarrhea. I was so frustrated with this never ending sickness. But we just took it easy with food that day and she was all better by Christmas day. Whew!

However, last night I realized I'm definitely coming down with a cold. I woke up this morning all stuffed up and my sinuses just ache. Ugh. This is ridiculous! Summer needs to come back.

4. My brother Luke came home from Florida for Christmas. It was so great to see him. I'm so sad that Lucy doesn't really know him. But they got to know each other real well over the past week. They spent lots of time together on Christmas day and now anytime Lucy hears me say anything about Luke, she runs over to the picture of him on our wall and points to him. So glad she finally knows who he is. Now we just need to get him to move home, so she doesn't forget again in a couple weeks . . .

5. Justin and I finished the 5th and final season of Friday Night Lights last night. That show was so underrated. We loved it and I'm sad to see it go. Next up in our Netflix queue: the most recent season of 30 Rock. We have to watch the whole season before the new one starts. I didn't think that show was coming back - so glad it is! And then White Collar starts in a couple weeks! Although, that's on cable, so I'm going to have to DVR it at work to watch during naptime or something. Haha. I'm a TV junkie.

6. I only worked one day this week, and yet my house is completely trashed. I really need to work on time management. You'd think having dial up Internet would discourage me from spending so much time on the computer. No such luck. Haha.

7. Well it's the last day of 2011. We had a pretty tame year. No new jobs or babies or moves. It will be interesting to see what next year holds. We'll be ringing in the new year with our small group tonight. I'm so excited to see the newest addition - Paul and Missy's baby boy, Jackson! And Lucy's spending the night at my parents', so we can stay out as late as we want and sleep in tomorrow morning! Woohoo!

Ok, I seriously spent an hour trying to think up 7 points. So I really need to get off the computer now. Happy New Year, everyone!!

Saturday, December 17, 2011

The Saturday 7

I really don't think I'm going to make it to 7 things because our whole week can be summed up in two awful words: stomach flu.

1. I worked all day on Monday and Lucy was her normal self. We had spaghetti for dinner - something I don't make often because I don't like it. But Lucy loved it and scarfed it down. A couple hours later, she puked it up all over me, the couch, my white sweatshirt, and white blanket. 1st load of laundry. We put her to bed an hour later and she puked up the rest of her dinner. 2nd load of laundry. Justin went to bed and said, "Hopefully she's done throwing up now." Ugh.

She threw up literally every 20 minutes until 4 a.m. Eventually I just started putting a burp cloth under her head. I'd jump up when she started puking, wipe off her face, and replace the burp cloth. She hardly even woke up every time. After a few hours of this, I started to worry about her getting dehydrated, so I got out the medicine syringe and started squirting water down her throat every time she puked. It was horrible.

She's been puking about once every 24 hours since then. The doctor said it's just the stomach flu and we have to wait it out. :-(

2. I got a mild version on Thursday. Fortunately Justin had that day off this week, because I was pretty worthless. I just laid on the couch in agony, made Justin go get me Saltines and Gatorade, and cried about how much I wanted to throw up just to get the grossness out of my stomach. I never actually did throw up and felt better by Friday morning.

3. Ok, enough about puke!! Until today, we had absolutely no snow cover - pretty unheard of for this time of year in Michigan. This morning we woke up to a fine dusting. I just want the record to show that I have absolutely no objection to a green Christmas. Haha. This may come as a surprise to some. I'm generally a very traditional person. But I'm willing to compromise with snow. I detest that white stuff, abhor driving in it, dread it all year. So the longer we can make it without snow, the better!! I'll find my Christmas spirit elsewhere.

4. Speaking of which . . . Christmas is now 8 days away and I'm getting really excited. We only bought presents for Lucy, Chase and Lyla, and a couple for each other this year. But I have everything bought, wrapped, and under the tree. Lucy hasn't touched the presents. I have more trouble keeping the stupid cat away from them.

5. We're going to miss the extended VanderKodde family Christmas tonight because of the flu debacle. So sad! I love Justin's family parties. Always so much good food (they're ordering Pizza Hut tonight! So mad I'm missing it!), so many laughs, so many cute kids (there's always a new baby in the VK clan!), and games galore! We always play Bunko at Christmas. This will be the first year we've ever missed. And hopefully the last!

6. My work schedule actually worked out really well this week. I worked on Monday when we were healthy, then had the rest of the week off 'til Friday. I actually called in sick Thursday night. I'm glad I did because Lucy threw up again Friday morning. But I felt pretty bad about leaving them high and dry. Although, in the 5 years I've worked there I'm pretty sure I've only called in sick 2 other times - once when I had the flu, and once when I had my miscarriage. So really, that's not too bad, right? And seriously, I think they'd be more upset if I showed up and they all got the flu the week of Christmas!

7. Oh, here's an exciting milestone to finish with: Lucy doesn't really point at things and identify them. She can say kitty and juice and stuff, but mostly just if I ask her to say it. For the first time this week, I pointed to a baby in her book and said, "What's this?" She actually replied: "baby!" (Which is also a new word this week.) So proud!

Saturday, December 10, 2011

The Saturday 7

Another late one this week! So sorry.

1. I spent the day with Justin's mom in Frankenmuth/Birch Run today. We had a blast shopping all day and eating way too much delicious food. I've never been to Frankenmuth before - I didn't know what I was missing! Bronner's is pretty much the coolest place ever. Although I'd like to go sometime in the middle of the summer when it's not a complete madhouse! Haha. Thanks, Donna for a great day!

2. I can't believe Christmas is 2 weeks away! It really snuck up on me this year. I decided I'm going to buy Lucy an ornament every year that represents something she liked that year or something monumental that happened. Last year was "Baby's First Christmas." This is what I got for this year:

A shoe! She loves shoes soooo much that I couldn't pass this one up. :-) When I showed it to her, she immediately put it on the floor and tried to slide her foot into it. Haha. Silly girl.

3. Justin and I wanted to go see a movie last night, but couldn't work it out with a babysitter and the movie times and stuff, so we just got a redbox and junk food and stayed home instead. We made my new favorite chip dip. It's incredibly fattening and bad for you, but sooo addicting and easy: one brick of cream cheese and a can of Hormel chili microwaved to creamy goodness.  Mmmmmm. You should try it.

4. I made these ornaments with Lyla this week:

Picture from

It was super easy! They turned out really well and Lyla thought it was awesome pouring glitter into the balls and then shaking them to spread the glitter around. 

5. Here's another fattening Pinterest recipe I made this week

Picture from
Chocolate chip cookie dough truffles. Yes, they are as amazing as they look. I made them for our Bible Study potluck on Monday. There were leftovers, and I chowed them all down. Haha. They were easy to make, but a little time consuming.

6. Lucy has really been into reading books lately. I absolutely love it. I know I just wrote that she doesn't like to sit on my lap and read, but all of a sudden, she does! She's started doing my absolute favorite thing. If ever I'm sitting on the floor and she wants to read, she gets her book, then stands like a foot in front of me, and backs her little booty up so slowly until she hits me, then plops into my lap. I remember Chase and Lyla doing that too. Love it! Haha. She has 3 Elmo books now that sparked her interest in reading. She wants to read them alllll the time. 

7. One more Lucy thing to report. She officially started singing a song all on her own this week. I noticed her walking around the house the other day waving her arms and singing "ahhhh doooo."  Haha. It took me a while, but I finally realized she's singing "All through the town" - from "Wheels on the Bus." She sang it the entire time we were grocery shopping the other day and sings it all day around the house. Most times she'll gesture for me to join her and she gets the biggest smile on her face. So stinkin' adorable. :-)

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Happy Birthday Jesus!

When I was a kid, we had a family friend who always hosted a birthday party for Jesus, and I decided I want to carry on the tradition with Lucy and her friends. I decided to start small this year and just invite a group of my friends who know each other - and all have kids Lucy's age (plus Kris and R.J. who's 6 months old :-)). 

I sent out regular birthday invitations a couple weeks ago. On the line that said, "for:" I wrote "Jesus!" Haha. I asked everyone to bring a gift for Toys for Tots. As the kids get older, I'll explain how the wise men brought gifts to Jesus. Or maybe how we get gifts at our birthday, so we're bringing gifts for Jesus . . . who is giving them to kids who don't get presents.

I decorated the night before with streamers and balloons, then woke up early on Saturday morning to get cooking.

I wanted everything to be toddler sized, so I borrowed some muffin tins from my friends and looked up some recipes on Pinterest. The party was at 9:00 am, so I served breakfast: banana muffins, cinnamon rolls, grapes, and Idaho Sunrise eggs. They were so yummy - hashbrowns on the bottom, an egg cracked over top, then sprinkled with cheese and bacon. I also made plain egg and cheese cups for the kids. 

Picture from
After breakfast, we did our activity. I purposely didn't plan much because these kids are 18 months old and don't have much of an attention span. But I did want to incorporate the Christmas story somehow. So I went to Family Christian and browsed their Sunday School section until I found a nativity sticker scene. I put the nativity on the wall and let the kids go at it with stickers while I told the story. Here's what we ended up with:
Haha - I love it!

Of course, it wouldn't be a birthday party without cupcakes!

The girls eating their cupcakes. Lucy, Presley, Hayley, Abby.
It was a great time! Thanks to Lucy's friends for coming over!

Saturday, December 3, 2011

The Saturday 7

Gonna have to make this quick. We're hosting small group in an hour.

1. Justin had the week off. He got so much done. You will all be pleased to know our antenna is now on the roof! Woohoo! (Although, technically it's not connected to the TV yet. He has to drill some more holes. Haha.) He also put up all the Christmas lights outside, which I love! We're so festive. :-)

2. We got our Christmas tree on Wednesday. I always have these expectations of picking out the tree as a happy family, singing carols with huge smiles plastered on our faces. It's inevitably less picture perfect. Justin wants a tall skinny tree, I want a short fat one. I don't want to pay more than $20. He wants a more expensive one. Lucy is cold and grumpy and clingy. Haha. We got it home to decorate and Lucy was completely enamored with the red and green stones I put in my vases. She wanted nothing to do with hanging ornaments on the tree. Maybe next year. :-)

3. When my brother comes home from Florida for Christmas, I'm going to make him help me put all the videos I've taken of Lucy onto DVDs. She and I watched a whole bunch of them one day this week and she was totally riveted. I seriously think she would watch them for hours!

4. We had a birthday party for Jesus today with Lucy's friends. :-) It was so much fun! I'm going to write a whole entry on it later this week. Hopefully with pictures!

5. My back has absolutely been killing me all week. At first I just thought I tweaked a muscle or something, but it's not getting any better. I'm going to try to go to the chiropractor next week. It better not be my stinkin' kidneys. It kind of feels like the time that I dislodged a rib. The chiropractor popped that puppy back in and I was feeling better the next day!

6. I saw this on Pinterest the other day and spent like 10 minutes trying to figure it out. It is so frustrating! Haha. Will someone please explain it to me??

7. In reading Acts, I suddenly have so many questions about the Holy Spirit. I've read Acts plenty of times before, and have been a Christian all my life, so I don't understand why this is such a new thing to me, but it led me to ask for the book Forgotten God for Christmas. (Sorry, my Internet is being too slow to link it.) It's by Francis Chan, and I don't have the best track record with enjoying his books, but I do respect him as a Christian and an author, so hopefully I'll get some of my questions answered! Has anyone read it?
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