Saturday, May 26, 2012

The Saturday 7

1. We had our house appraised last week and got the results this week. It appraised for $1,000 over what we needed it to in order to refinance! Woohoo! Thanks for the prayers.

2. So we started potty training this week. Oh boy. If you're looking to develop patience, try potty training a 2 year old. Haha. Really, she's done pretty well. She goes every time I put her on the toilet, but it's just a tedious process. I try to take her in every half an hour. And she insists on putting the ring on the toilet by herself and pulling her shorts and undies down by herself. It takes f.o.r.e.v.e.r! Even with taking her in every half hour, she's still had her fair share of accidents. Fortunately, she hasn't made any huge messes. Most of the time, she just goes a tiny bit and catches herself. One time she started yelling "floor!" I looked over and there was a tiny puddle on the floor. We're just going to keep at it and hope it starts to click in her brain soon!

3. The other thing that has been teaching me patience this week is Lucy's sudden change in attitude. Seriously, Tuesday night she had a complete meltdown and it was like a switch flipped. I've never seen her act the way she's been acting this week. (We started potty training on Thursday, so I don't think the two are necessarily related.) On Tuesday, around 4:00 I told her no about something and she cried until 7:00! She was out of control - kicking, screaming, crying, shouting "no!", crossing her arms, stomping her feet - for 3 solid hours! I tried disciplining her, cuddling with her, distracting her, feeding her. All to no avail. I finally threw her in the bath, literally had to pin her down to clean her because she was flailing psychotically, and put her to bed an hour early! She hasn't been that naughty since then, but something is not quite right. I keep expecting her to wake up with a fever or start puking or something. She's just acting so abnormal. The past few days, she's been fine until about 11:30 am, then she finds something to start crying about and doesn't stop. I try to give her lunch and she just screams and cries. Yesterday and today I ended up giving her her binky and rocking with her in her bedroom until she calmed down. She'll take a long nap and wake up happy again. I seriously don't know what is going on!

4. In cuter Lucy news, she's loving the goldfish we got her for her birthday. (We originally got her 2, but one died already. Haha.) She loves to feed him. She'll tell me "hungry," and rub her belly to indicate the fish is hungry. And every time I ask her what the fish's name is, she says "E-O-I" - she literally says those three letters. Haha. So I guess his name is E-O-I!

5. Exciting news: I won a Celebration Cinema popcorn bucket and $10 gift card this week! I saw the contest on facebook, and entered it thinking it was probably just a scam. But I got an email saying I won and they were mailing the bucket to me. I figured I'd believe it when I saw it, but it came later that day! So exciting! We've been trying so hard not to spend money lately, that I was overjoyed to be able to go do something fun and not beat myself up for spending money on it. So Justin and I went and saw "What to Expect When You're Expecting" last night. (Guess who picked the movie. Haha.) I was flabbergasted to realize movie tickets cost $10!! Apparently I haven't been to a movie in a while. Haha. But we enjoyed the movie and the free popcorn! Thanks, Celebration! Oh, and if any of my local readers ever want to borrow the popcorn bucket, it's refillable until October 1st, so you're welcome to swing by and pick it up! I doubt we'll be going to many more movies now that we've spent our gift card.

6. We don't have any big plans for Memorial Day. I realized the other day that pretty much everyone I know has a lake or a cottage or something to go to. We don't have anything like that. We're going to Niki's house in the suburbs on Monday. Does that count?

7. Radical Experiment Update: I caught up on my reading. I read all of Leviticus this week. Not the most riveting book. The hardest part was reading all the specific instructions on how to build the tabernacle, then reading how exactly they built the tabernacle using those specific instructions. I'm not a fan of repetition. Reading all the ceremonial laws about cleanliness were kind of interesting . . . and gross. Hairs growing out of sores, emissions, menstruation. I kept thinking it was so strange that God cared so much about such little things. If nothing else, Leviticus made me extremely grateful for our Great High Priest who became our sacrifice once and for all! (Hebrews 10) Now wish me luck with Numbers! Haha.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Lucy's Favorite Things - Age 2

Favorite Colors: Purple and orange
Favorite Food: Macaroni and Cheese
Favorite Song: "Wheels on the Bus"
Favorite Book: Elmo's Potty Book
Favorite Movie: Elmo's Sing-A-Long
Favorite Animal: Kitty
Favorite Game: Chase Lola
Favorite Snack: Cheese
Favorite Fruit: Raspberries
Favorite Drink: Milk
Favorite PJs: Elmo
Favorite Toy: Dora dollhouse
Favorite Outside Activity: Slide and swing


Saturday, May 19, 2012

The Saturday 7

1. Lucy had her 2 year well child check up yesterday. She weighs 25 lbs (32%) and is 35 inches tall (83%). It's so crazy that she has consistently been tall for her age! I don't know where she gets that from! She had 3 shots. When they put the first one in, she just yelled "owie!" When the second two went in though, she really cried. :-( She recovered quickly though thanks to a sucker and some Elmo stickers. :-) The doctor is referring us to a pediatric podiatrist because her left foot points in so much when she walks. I'm glad she's being proactive about it. Hopefully at this age it will be easily correctable.

2. I made a couple new winning recipes this week. Chicken Tortilla Bake and Cream Cheese Spaghetti Casserole. The spaghetti was my favorite, so I'll share that recipe here. I linked to the other one if you want to look it up.

Cream Cheese Spaghetti Casserole (from

12 oz spaghetti
1 (28 ounce) jar prepared spaghetti sauce
1 lb lean ground beef
1 tsp Italian seasoning
1 clove garlic, minced
8 ounces cream cheese
1/2 cup parmesan cheese, grated [I used shredded 5 cheese Italian]

Preheat oven to 350 F degrees.
In a skillet, brown the ground beef until cooked through; drain fat and stir in spaghetti sauce.  Set aside.
Cook spaghetti according to directions on packet.  Drain and place cooked spaghetti in bowl.  Add cream cheese, Italian Seasoning and minced garlic.  Stir until cream cheese is melted and the spaghetti is thoroughly coated.
Lightly grease a 9x13" pan.  Spread a small amount of meat sauce in the bottom of the dish.  Put spaghetti on top of sauce and top with remaining meat sauce.  Sprinkle parmesan cheese on top.
Bake for 30 minutes, until bubbly.

It was great as leftovers, too! Justin and I both had it for lunch the next day. Yum! 

3. Now that Lucy is 2 and we're almost out of diapers from the last box I bought, I've decided to get down to business with the potty training. We've been having her try to go every night before bed. She's gone every night for the past week. Sometimes she just squeaks out a tiny little bit, but the past couple nights she's really gone. We've been reading potty books and talking about it a lot and rewarding with candy. So she's definitely interested. I have 5 days off next weekend thanks to Memorial Day, so we're going to do the "wear underwear and take her to the bathroom every half an hour" approach. Wish me luck! Haha. I'm sure I'll report back next week.

4. Lucy has a new phrase: "excuse me." It actually sounds like "me me." But it is so cute. I figure she must have learned it from me because I say that to Lola 100 times a day as I'm trying to walk up and down the stairs. (Lucy also says, "move, Lola!") Yesterday, Lucy wanted to sit in the chair I was sitting in, so she pushed on me as hard as she could, shouting "me me!" Haha. 

5. We have been loving the warm weather this week. Lucy absolutely adores being outside. And I'm loving the chance to work on my tan for Libby's wedding. But  I'm a little hesitant of going outside these days. There have been so many bear sightings in our area lately. In case you're new around here, I have an inexplicable phobia of bears. One was spotted about 5 miles from my house. *shudder* 

6. Speaking of fears . . . I saw this sign in front of a church this week: "Anxiety is unbelief in disguise." Sigh. I usually love those cheesy church signs. You know . . . "Ch__ch - what's missing? UR!" Lol. I think they're great! But I'm not a fan of the anxiety one. I hate the implication that my anxiety is disbelief. I truly believe that some forms of anxiety are a chemical imbalance. My life absolutely changed when I went on anxiety medication. It erased so many of my anxious tendencies. (Obviously not all of them, as number 5 illustrates!) But even aside from that, God does not promise to give me smooth sailing! Terrible things happen to Christians. Certainly I know that God has a plan for my life, and nothing happens to me that he doesn't allow. But that doesn't stop me from worrying he will let awful things happen! I'm still afraid of the pain. I'm not saying it's right to constantly live in a state of fear. But I think calling all anxiety unbelief takes it too far. 

7. I have been doing terribly on my Radical Experiment. I never remember to pray for the countries, and I'm about a whole book of the Bible behind in the reading. I need to devote like a whole afternoon to reading the book of Leviticus. 

Saturday, May 12, 2012

The Saturday 7

Sorry this is so late! We've had a crazy weekend/day. I kind of forgot about it!

1. We were supposed to have the appraisal on our house for the refinancing this week. The appraiser called and cancelled 5 minutes after he was supposed to be to our house. Bummer. Rescheduled for Wednesday. Please pray that it appraises high enough!

2. I realized this week that I literally spend 1/3 of my paycheck on gas every week. That's just my gas - not even Justin's! How depressing . . .

3. I made this baked French toast for dinner on Wednesday. It was delicious! And very bad for us. Haha. Maybe next time I'll throw in some cauliflower puree or something. :-)

4. My brother, Luke, is home from Florida for the weekend! It was so great to see him again. And I love that Lucy knows just who he is even though she only sees him about twice a year. Hopefully he'll be able to move closer to home soon . . . We had siblings' lunch on Friday - something we used to do fairly often before he left. It was so nice to do it again. Sometimes I think it's so strange how we've all grown up so much. Niki has a kid who is a junior in high school (and is going to prom tonight with his girlfriend!) Luke's living on his own in Florida. Libby's getting married! So crazy.

5.Speaking of crazy . . . Justin ran the 25K 5/3 Riverbank Run today! It was insane. Apparently, it's the biggest 25K race in the nation. And I feel like most of the nation was there. Lucy and I went to cheer Justin on, and you should've seen me trying to push the stroller through the throng of people. Haha! Justin did so well, though. His goal was to make it in under 2 hours. He finished in 02:01:30. His dad, grandma and sister Stacey came to cheer him on as well, and we all saw him cross the finish line. I was amazed at how many people stumbled across the finish line practically passed out. I saw a few people get put in wheel chairs and a lot of pukers. Why do people do that to themselves?? Haha. It was a fun day, though. Lucy loved being out and about. We're so proud of Justin!

6. After the run, we stopped at The Score for lunch. I could never get hired as a waitress at that restaurant. Anyone wanna guess why?

7. Ok, now for the long-awaited birthday update. My Lucy girl turned 2 on Friday. It's so bittersweet. I love watching her grow older and learn new things and celebrate big milestones, but I mourn for every bit of babyhood she leaves behind. I went back and read her birth story. It feels like yesterday. I can't wait to do it again. :-) Anyway, we had an Elmo party Friday night. I decorated while she was taking her nap, so she woke up to Elmo everywhere and was so excited.

We just invited our immediate families (which is still around 20 people), and had a blast! Lucy is well loved and got soooo spoiled. She was adorable every time she opened a present and exclaimed "Dora!" or "Elmo!"

She was not a fan of everyone singing "Happy Birthday" to her. She closed her eyes throughout the entire song, but blew the birthday candles out all by herself! (We've been practicing.)

It was a great night and we are so blessed to have so many people who love her (and us) so much. I was going to upload some pictures, but I just spent like 2 hours putting them on facebook and I need to get to bed. Check them out there. ;-)

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Recent Observations

1. Even 3.5 year olds still think it's cool to color on walls.
2. Something has been tromping through my garden. I'm pretty sure it's a bear.
3. If you start bragging about how your daughter sleeps in until 9:00, she'll inevitably start waking up 2 hours earlier!
4. I can fall asleep in 5 seconds sitting in a chair at work (at naptime - relax), but it takes me half an hour of tossing and turning to fall asleep in my bed at night.
5. It's been 2 years and my stomach still looks like the last picture in this post. I think it's time to abandon hope that it will ever go back to normal.
6. Reading a whole bunch of books by the same author in a row really makes you realize how often she uses certain words/phrases. For instance, Colleen Coble uses the word "macadam" in every single book.
7. All the recent debates about gay marriage make my blood boil. I think I have an anger problem.
8. Jumping on a trampoline is different after having a baby.

Saturday, May 5, 2012

The Saturday 7

1. I planted some stuff in my garden this week! (With my dad's help.) Potatoes, strawberries, and flowers. Dad says we have to wait to plant the zucchini, melon, and squash. I loved digging my hands in the dirt. And Lucy has loved helping me water the garden.

2. Wednesday was a beautiful warm, sunny day. After dinner, Justin, Lucy and I went to Morley Park in Cedar. We've lived here for 3 years and have never been there. It was so nice! They had 3 or 4 different play structures, swings, a merry go round, even some bongo drums! Lucy was in her glories. Except that all the play structures are on sand and she was wearing sandals. She was not a fan. Haha. Note to self: next time, put her in tennis shoes. She found a set of little slides with a short set of steps. Justin and I sat on the grass and watched her go up the stairs, down the slide, up the stairs, down the slide . . . over and over and over. I can't wait for her to get a slide for her birthday! Hours of entertainment!

3. On Thursday, we had a playdate with Kelly, Presley, Missy, and Jackson. Everyone came to our house for coffee and play time. We had such a blast! It's amazing how we girls can sit and talk for hours on end without running out of things to talk about! And Lucy and Presley did a good job playing together. Lucy has finally started saying "Presley." It kind of sounds like "Pepsi." Haha. Best friends! I also thoroughly enjoyed snuggling with 4 month old Jackson. Such a cutie pie!

4. Yesterday, we went to the bank and got approved to re-finance our house. I just can't bring myself to sell it. And so many people have reacted so negatively to the idea of us selling that I'm kind of taking that as a sign. We're getting about a 3.5% interest rate (we haven't locked in yet), which will lower our payment just over $100 a month. Every little bit counts! We just need our house to appraise high enough. The lady at the bank didn't seem to think that'd be a problem, but we'd appreciate your prayers anyway! Oh, and as a fun side note: We got our credit scores. They're both very good, but mine is one point higher than Justin's. Haha! Winner!

5. After Lucy's allergic reaction to pureed carrots, I decided to try cauliflower this week. My house reeked for days after boiling the cauliflower, but it was worth it. The great thing about cauliflower is that it's white and blends in with everything! I've been putting it in our food too because we don't eat enough vegetables either.

6. We celebrated my Mother's Day today. We're going to be so busy on actual Mother's Day weekend, so I cashed in on it today. All I wanted was sleep and restaurant food. So Justin got up with Lucy this morning and got her out of the house so it was totally silent. I slept 'til 11! Then we went to Qdoba because I got a coupon in my email for $5 entrees (thank you Cinco de Mayo!). After stuffing ourselves, we stopped at Once Upon a Child to see Libby and get a couple things with a gift card. Later, as we were getting off the highway to go home, we noticed Ruthie, the Country Fresh cow was parked outside White Creek Lumber along with a bunch of bounce houses and a real live cow in a pen. We stopped to see what it was all about. Come to find out, it was the "Cow Plop." Lol. The cow was in a big pen with a grid spray painted on the ground. People buy quadrants and bet on where the cow will poop! Oh man. You know you're a redneck when . . .  We didn't stay for the cow plop, but Lucy loved seeing the cow (it was moo-ing like crazy!) and jumping in the bounce house.

7. The Radical update for the week: I finished Genesis. I've read Genesis a million times (because I've tried to read through the Bible a million times and always start in Genesis), but it still amazes me how I pick up new things and have new questions. My mom and I were talking about how these men lived to be 130 years old, but only had like 10 kids (despite having multiple wives). Doesn't it seem like in 130 years, these men would produce like 50 children? Hmm.

My other random question is why do you think some Biblical names caught on in modern society and some didn't? Take, for example, the 12 tribes of Israel. You hear of people named Dan, Benjamin, and Joseph all the time. But why didn't Naphtali, Issachar, or Gad catch on? It's also interesting to read through the genealogies and see the crazy names. I was struck by how similar some of the brothers' names were. For instance, Genesis 46: 17, "The sons of Asher were Imnah, Ishvah, Ishvi . . ." Wouldn't that be confusing? "Ishvah! I mean Ishvi! Get over here right now!" I have a hard enough time with my sister's boys Tyler, Tristan, and Tayton!  Haha.

Ok, this is ridiculously long. Sorry. Have a great week, everyone!
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