Thursday, June 28, 2007

He's Always Been Faithful To Me

Thank you all for being such wonderful friends. I could never do this thing called life alone. God has put such amazing people in my path and I am feeling extremely thankful for that, especially now. I have had "baby fever" for a little while now -- just hadn't expressed it here. Then Jay and I sat down to have THE TALK the other night and I discovered that hubby's heart is closed shut to the idea of expanding our family right now. Not that he doesn't want another child. He does. It is just too overwhelmingly stressful for him to think about financially. We are not wealthy. We are not poor, either. We live month to month. We both work hard to make this family of three work, and the thought of forking over thousands and thousands of dollars to bring home baby number 2 is just too much for my sweet hubby to handle. I am a crazy female that would just take out yet another loan to make it happen, but that isn't the wise thing to do and I KNOW that. After my last post I recieved so many encouraging comments and e-mails -- they left me in tears. Just knowing that so many people care about me and are praying for me made me feel so grateful. So, I just wanted to let you know that I am putting this situation fully into God's hands and I am trusting that He will work everything out...just like He did with my sweet Lily. I am reminded of a time once before in my life where my heart was aching for a child and how God's faithfulness to me was astounding. We sang a song by Sara Groves in my old church (the church that will forever feel like "home" to me) about God's faithfulness...

Morning by morning I wake up to find the power and comfort of God's hand in mine.

Season by season I watch Him amazed, in awe of the mystery of His perfect ways.

Chorus: All I have need of, His hand will provide. He's always been faithful to me.

I can't remember a trial or a pain He did not recycle to bring me gain.

I can't remember one single regret in serving God only and trusting His hand.


This is my anthem, this is my song, the theme of the stories I've heard for so long.

God has been faithful, He will be again. His loving compassion it knows no end.

All I have need of His hand will provide. He's always been faithful... He's always been faithful... He's always been faithful to me.

A special thank you to my sweet "sisters" (travelmates): your love and concern for me and my family is overwhelming. I love you girls so much and I can't believe we will all be together in one week!!!!!! Yay!

Bye! Bye! Baby

One minute she's a baby. I blink and she's a "big girl".
Just feeling like time is slipping thru my fingers.

She'll never be a baby again. I guess I'm having a hard time because I'm now wondering if I'll ever be a momma to a baby again. Or was this my one chance?
Don't get me wrong, I'm content with one. My heart is full.
It's just got me thinking, that's all.

Monday, June 25, 2007

Monkey mats and diaper rash

OK, some of you girls (you KNOW who you are!) want me to reveal a bit more of myself. Or, rather, the contents of my little home and my PURSE of all things!?

Well, I'm not willing to share such personal "stuff" with you at this moment. It's summertime and I'm too busy outside enjoying myself to do much cleaning around the homestead right now. And my purse! I don't even want to think about THAT right now. Can you say "junk sack"!? So, I will show you the lovely outer-workings of my tiny bungalow and the "monkey mat" that sits upon my porch (along with a rocking chair, a pink chair for Lily, lots of bubble-blowing equipment, bubbles, and other random items). This is all ya get for now. The rest will come at a later date. I promise. And if you're ever in the neighborhood feel free to drop by. Visitors are always welcome. Just don't expect my bed to be made.

Anyway, our weekend was a tad LESS fun than I had anticipated. The antibiotics that Lily has to take for her eye infection cause her to have nasty diarrhea. So, traveling was not the greatest thing for her (now raw) bottom. She was not exactly in "party mode" so we struggled through two graduation parties and lots of driving on Saturday. She slept like a rock that night, which was a pleasant change, and we did spend a small amount of time in my in-law's pool on Sunday. But, we were back on the road right after lunch to get our baby home sweet home. She is doing MUCH better today. She is learning that if she releases the "crap" into the potty rather than into her diaper it is better for everyone. Smart girl. So, I was running back and forth between my neighbor's pool and the potty all day today. My sister-in-law gave me some "bottom paint" to help with the diaper rash and it does seem to be working its magic, thank the Lord. So, that's what we're up to over here. We have big plans the next couple of weekends, so I guess it's better to be getting this out of the way now.

Friday, June 22, 2007

Happy Weekend

Well, our beautiful summer of perfection took a slight nose dive for a day or two. Lily developed an eye infection -- woke up Tuesday morning with her eye gooped shut crying "Momma, I can't see! I can't open my eye! It hurts reedy bad!" So, I started her on some eyedrops, but it didn't seem to be working fully because her other eye was swollen and red the next morning. So, Wednesday we were off to the Pediatrician's office. Her doctor was AMAZED at the huge change in Lily since her last visit. So big, so talkative, so happy to be there...who'd a thunk? Anyway, she's on antibiotics now and is definitely on the mend. We are going to visit my inlaws this weekend for fun in the pool and two graduation parties. It will be a great time, so I'm glad Lil will be up for the "party"! She informed me today that she is ready to go swimming "all by myself, underwater with my goggles"...(she swam with a little girl on Monday who was doing this.) We shall see if it really happens. She hasn't been real fond of the water on her face yet, so this would be a huge step for her. But, we were practicing in the tub tonight and then Jay went out to Target to buy her some swim goggles just in case. She had to try them on immediately. Pretty silly, eh?

So, we spent a couple of days inside trying out all of her new birthday toys (a giant puzzle, lots of great books, clay creations, and more) and just relaxed as much as a 3 yr old is capable of. We're ready to head back outside tomorrow for more fun in the sun. Happy weekend, friends!

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Like daughter

Well, as most of you know, Lily is very much a "Momma's girl". Jay jokes (quite sadly) that he was her favorite for the 2 weeks we were in China and I have been her favorite for the TWO (PLUS)YEARS we have been home. But, I am seeing her prefer him more and more lately. She will now wake up in the morning and say "Where's my daddy? I want him." And she spends much more time with him in the evenings. They go for bike rides and she helps him with yardwork, and she even shaves with him. I love watching them together -- and let's face it, it gives me a break (so I can blog!)

The funniest thing, though, is when I see him in the things she says and does. It catches me so off guard sometimes I just have to laugh and shake my head. For instance, her greeting to guys around Jay's age is sometimes "Rock on," And she even does the hand signal. I didn't even KNOW there was such a hand signal. Then last week when leaving a friend's house she (instead of saying goodbye) yelled "Peace out!" But the best was last week at my sister's house when my nephew Payton (almost 2 years old) was dancing around the room like the little maniac he is and Lily sat there watching and giggling, and then she just busted out with "Shake shake money mak-AH"...For those of you who are familar with the song, you are laughing. I have only heard the song cuz hubby is a huge fan of rap/hip-hop. (It basically is telling you to shake your bootie, AKA money maker...I think.)
I think Jay is a pretty incredible guy. Yep, he's goofy and a bit strange too, but I love seeing him in our daughter. They are both keeping me on my toes...and laughing a lot.

Monday, June 18, 2007

Lil tidbits -- summer fun!

Well, I don't have to tell you that we are LOVING OUR SUMMER!
We are having such fun and staying super busy outside in the beautiful, wonderful sunshine. We have been potty-training, doing lots of yardwork, swimming, and enjoying BBQ's with friends and family.
Lily is so great. She is Miss. Personality, Miss. Nice n Friendly, and (most) everything that comes out of her mouth either cracks me up or touches my heart! What's that you say? You need examples??? OK. Here goes...
1. Standing next to me, she starts squeezing herself around the waist and asks sweetly, "Momma, can you give me some love please?" And I obliged happily, of course.
2. While I was in the bathroom she walks in on me (like always), but this time she says "Momma, I'm gonna give you your pribacy" and leaves. She walked into the living room and I hear her tell Jay "Daddy, I really love my mommy."
3. Reading a Dr. Seuss book that says Go ask your mother: I ask her who her mother is and she replies, "Mommy, you're my mudda!"
4. Asks her bald daddy, "You got head, daddy? I got hair!"
5. Swimming in a friend's pool she splashes over to me and says "Are you happy, momma? I'm so happy. You make me soooo happy."
6. I'm in the bathroom again (sorry for all the potty talk) and Lily says "Good job, momma. Let it all out. You got more in there, or you all done?"
7. Yesterday at my parent's house for the "Father's Day" BBQ, Lily was loading her bowl with blueberries one by one and counting them IN SPANISH, up to 12! My mom said, I didn't know she could count that high in Spanish! And, neither did I, actually.
So, I'm blogging less cuz I'm inside less. But life is good over here!
Happy Monday everyone.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Unexpected lovin' on my birthday

OK, so yesterday was my 34th birthday, and I had every intention of just letting the day go by just like any big deal. It was just MY birthday afterall. There would be no big "birthday extravaganza" . No pictures of my "party dress". I wasn't even going to post anything about it -- you all come here for Lily, right?? Well, too bad, this is all about me and my day because it ended up being anything BUT ordinary and I just had to make mention of it.I had such a wonderful and special birthday from beginning to end! I started my day by checking my e-mail and blog comments...just like every other day. Well, I had so many e-mails, Myspace b-day wishes, comments and e-cards...I was totally blown away! I then received several phone calls and texts, and this was all before I left for work! Work was good -- I got a card signed by all my friends (more like family) and lotsa hugs. I started to think maybe my birthday still was a special day afterall. Don't get me wrong -- I love my birthday, I just figured there wouldn't be any fuss made about it. I was wrong! My parents came and sat in my section for lunch, and brought with them beautiful daisy balloons and a card (and a huge tip)! I had a great day and stayed after to enjoy a glass of wine (or 2) on the patio with a co-worker and very dear friend of mine. We were having such a great time together that the hours just slipped away. My hubby ended up calling me and telling me to get my butt family was there to celebrate and I was messing everything up by pulling a "no show". Hey! Who knew?

When I got home Jay was grilling steaks and my family was there waiting for me. I was so touched. We had a great evening outside enjoying good food, more wine and a lot of laughs. Later on some of my neighbors stopped by to join in on the fun.

It ended up being one of the best birthdays I've ever had. Really perfect.

I don't need much. Just the people I love the most close to me. That's all.

Lily wished me a happy birthday several times and was just her cute, little self...being her momma makes every day feel like my birthday. So, now I'm a year older and life honestly just keeps getting sweeter for me. I'm a happy girl.

Oh, and now it's officially over. It's June 16th...go over and wish Stef a very happy birthday. Today is all about you Stef! Happy Birthday!

Thursday, June 14, 2007

More on the birthday girl

OK, so Lily's Birthday WEEK is keepin' us busy over here. The cards, presents, e-mails, and celebrations are not stopping! I know she is loving all of the extra attention, and I am just blown away by everyone's thoughtfulness and generosity. She received this fun little "changing room" last night from a very dear friend of mine (thank you Nicole). She immediately climbed in and checked herself out in the mirror, then poked her head out the window and said "peek-a-boo momma!" And, next thing you know, I'M in there with pictures of that, though. (Sorry)

The three of us had dinner at Texas Road House -- all of us being such steak lovers it is naturally a family favorite. Lily didn't eat much, she was much too busy flirting with our waiter and waving at all of the surrounding tables...this child used to scream out in PAIN if anyone would so much as LOOK at her a year ago. Now she is a social butterfly -- it has been such a blast for me to watch her come so far in such a short time. As we left the restaurant she was smiling at all of the people we walked past and yellin' "YEEHAW!" (Which is what they yell when it is your birthday there)...

After dinner it was home to blow bubbles. (You had to see THAT coming, didn't you?) This is the Bubble Queen, afterall. So, I had bought a bunch of new bubble contraptions for her party, but they never even got opened -- the kids were all completely content to play on the swingset. So, we opened them up for Lily last night, and she was squatting like that for about an hour. Bless her bubble blowing heart.

Lastly, Lily received several new books that we have already been incorporating into our reading time. She is loving them! I can tell that age 3 is going to be one that I really enjoy. I have said that about every age thus far, but I think that 3 is something special. She seems to have an added sweetness. Perhaps it is an awareness of the fact that life is good and needs to be savored. She is quick to tell me she loves me sooo much and then she'll run out to the other room and say "Daddy, I really love my momma!"
Today we walked outside and she said, "Momma, it is such a beautiful day." I took her swimming on Monday and she kept gushing..."I really love to swim, momma... I'm really having so much fun, momma...thank you sooo much..." This is also the age of "Yiddy do it"! She is all about doin' it by herself. From putting on her shoes to climbing into her car seat. Back off momma, "Yiddy do it by yourself"...
(This is the last of the birthday installments. On to the next chapter. But, for those of you who commented on Lily's "party dress" in my last post, I wanted to let you know it is by Blueberi Boulevard. They have the cutest dresses and they are really inexpensive --sold at Kohl's and probably on-line. Check 'em out!)

Monday, June 11, 2007

We had a good time and nobody got hurt!

So, you take one sassy (almost) 3 year old princess, 9 other little munchkins (and their parents), a couple loving grandpas and grandmas, a beautiful auntie, an entertaining uncle, a goofy great-uncle and his lovely bride, one stressed-out momma and an over-worked daddy, combine that with a backyard sloppy-joe buffet lunch, a very popular swingset, some presents, lots of cupcakes and ice-cream and what do you get????
Yup, Lily Lin's 3rd Birthday Party Extravaganza! It went off without a hitch. Only three minor infractions on the swingset -- not too shabby. The food was good (the wine was great), the weather was PERFECT, Lily enjoyed herself immensely and the other kids did too, although it was nap-time for several of them...(note to self: if I am ever blessed with the honor of throwing another 3rd birthday party again, make it in the LATE afternoon or evening on a Saturday, as not to interfere with naps...duh!)
Anyhoo, ya live and learn. No biggie.
Lily got a lot of really great presents too. More Dora items than I can even remember -- she is in heaven...even slept with some of her new treasures last night. She received a little Dora figurine and kept waving her little arm at me saying "Momma, say hola Dora!"
She was even up several times in the night crying out for things from the party (her birthday balloons and her grandparents, to name a few)... It was a big day for her and we BOTH slept VERY late this morning.
Poor daddy had to work, of course.
So, that about sums it up. My sweet princess will officially be three tomorrow. Where HAS the time gone?

Friday, June 8, 2007

Favorite Photo Friday

OK, so this picture was a fluke. I meant to take a close-up picture of my sweet girl's gorgeous face and she decided to charge me at the last minute and this is what I got! And I absolutely love it. This child is beautiful in ways I never imagined a child of mine would be. And the greatest thing is -- I had absolutely nothing to do with it. So when she gets compliments from strangers on the street about how stinkin' beautiful she is I just give a huge smile and say "isn't she, though?" She doesn't have my light, curly hair or my husband's blue eyes. I can't "take credit" for any of her features...they weren't given to her by me. When my neighbors go on and on about her incredible almond shaped eyes I just agree and say "they are completely breathtaking, aren't they?" She is nothing like I imagined my child would be, but she now DEFINES beauty for me. She defines love, joy, happiness, and answered prayers. To quote a friend -- she is IT for me. (right, Stef?) And her beauty, as you all know, is not just skin deep. She has a beautiful heart, too. She is kind and sweet and loving. Oh, and she is FUNNY...sooooo funny. I could go on and on. God has blessed me so incredibly with this little beauty. She challenges me and tests me daily sure, but she LOVES ME SO GOOD. I am so thankful to a great big God for making this little one for our family... Sunday is Lily's 3rd birthday party, so I will probably be consumed with all of that for the next couple days...there will be lots of pictures on Monday! Have a great weekend all!

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

What must the neighbors think?

I often find myself wondering what the neighbors think of me -- or better yet, my "skills" as a mother. My child really does have a mind of her own, and most days it is better for me just to "go with the flow" than make waves. I have grown to be alright with the theory 'if she isn't hurting herself or others...don't fight it'...

So, many days you will see her parading through the neighborhood in nothin' but a diaper or better yet, her ballerina costume. She has come out of her shell A LOT in the past year, and will often scream "Hewow" and give her best princess wave to all of the neighbors who happen to be outside (fully and normally clothed) doing their yardwork and trying not to stare at her display. She is a trip, to say the least. And as I had mentioned before, her listening skills are going down the crapper fast. I often find that I am talking to myself -- a very frustrating habit. Last week I had such an exasperating day with her! We went to the store and she immediately ran off, leaving me to chase her and call out her name repeatedly with NO response. I had to pretend that I wasn't losing my mind in front of the other shoppers...Lily was lucky we had an audience. When we got home it was more of the same for the remainder of the day. She didn't take a nap, so I gave her a bath early and wanted to get her in her PJs for an early bedtime -- I was kidding myself. After her bath she proceeded to run around the house naked and screeching like a crazy person. Here I am feebly calling "Lily, please come here like a good girl...Lily come here please...Lily I need you to be a good listener for mommy..." (all things she had heard me say numerous times throughout the day). After several minutes of no reply I sighed VERY loudly and put my head in my hands. I was DONE. Right on cue, Lily crept up to me and put her hands on my cheeks, cupping my face, and got right on my level and very sweetly and softly said "I pwomise to be a good wistener momma" and then laid down for me to put on her diaper and jammies.
Never a dull moment around here, folks. This child is part sugar/ part spice! Gotta love her. I sure do!

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Fun with the Beckering Tribe

Well, we had a wonderful time with the Beckering family on Saturday. We hadn't seen them since last summer, so we were excited to spend some quality time together. Lily and Sophia loved each other's company from minute one -- two peas (or monkeys) in a pod! Stef and I had a blast, just catching up and laughing a lot. Emmie was tired from an exhausting social life -- hee hee -- so I set her up with a movie in the living room. David and Jay get along really well, so it just made for a nice and relaxing day. I wish they lived even closer, but I'm thankful for the times we have. We already have another date planned for August! I can't post a lot of the pictures I took because Lily is going thru an "exhibitionist" stage right now and she was running around naked in 80% of the photos!
Nothin' beats good times with good friends!

Sunday, June 3, 2007

Childhood Memories

Well, I was "tagged" twice for this meme and I have really enjoyed reading about everyone's childhood memories -- so here goes...

1. Spending time at my Uncle Rick's house (especially for holidays and birthdays)...he lived out in the country with chickens and horses. Us kids would go out back and swing on a tree rope and go out to the barn and jump from the top window into piles of hay.
2. Spending New Year's Eve at my grandma's house so my parents could go out. She would let us stay up to watch the ball drop at midnight. I also remember her sitting in her chair in the living room smoking her cigarettes and I don't remember ever thinking anything of it.
3. On the subject of my grandma ("gramcracker")...I remember her always having fudgsicles in her freezer, date cookies in her cookie jar, mints in her candy dish on the counter and wrigleys spearmint gum in a bowl in her cupboard.(?) I loved her so much and have soooo many memories with her in them. She died right before I graduated from High School.
4. Summer vacations in Traverse City. My family went with my grandma, my aunt and my cousin. We went every year for 10 years, I think. We stayed in the Holiday Inn on the bay and we always had the time of our lives. I remember swimming while listening to Van Halen's "Jump" on the radio and jumping over the rope everytime the word jump was sung. Playing in the arcade and meeting cute boys. Renting a jet ski and being very unsuccessful at riding the thing. Trying my first sip of a frozen strawberry daquiri (yum). Falling in the bay and getting my hair caught on the wiring around some rocks and having my aunt jump in (cutting her foot up quite badly) but saving my life!
OK, It looks like I could go on forever on this one. Let's just say these vacations were the best. (aside from the near drowning experience, of course)
5. Playing with neighborhood friends -- climbing trees, playing 4 square and kick the can.
6. SOOOOO many sleepovers. Watching movies and talking about boys. (I was always super boy crazy)!
7. Sixth grade I remember writing notes to the boys I liked asking them to rate the girls in our class on a scale from 1 to 10 on looks/body/personality.
8. Eighth grade I remember falling hopelessly in love with J.H. We "went together" for about 2 weeks and then he broke up with me. I didn't fully get over him until my senior year in highschool. (did I mention I was boy crazy?)
9. Halloween I remember going to the penny candy store with my parents because my mom didn't want us trick-or-treating...she believed Halloween was evil.
10. In elementary school I was bussed to another grade school one day a week to partake in the TAG (Talented And Gifted) program. We had cool classes like cooking and future problem solving. I was considered smart once upon a time!

It's amazing the things we remember, isn't it? But, I always wonder about all of the things that I have FORGOTTEN? Makes me wonder what Lily will hang on to.
*the picture is me (on the right) and my sister (on the left) and my mom in the distance.*

Saturday, June 2, 2007

My blog life enters my "real" life!

As promised, I am making good on my "catch up" posts.

Firstly, two of the women I have only had contact with in blogland have jumped out of the computer and into my life (and heart!) Actually, they were already in my heart -- now they have just dug a little deeper.

Last week Lily and I arrived home to a package with her name on it. (I looked at the return address and saw it was from Dannye over at "Laydfrog".) My heart just melted! Lily was over the moon excited, cuz little missy already knows that only FUN packages come in the mail for her. When she opened it she began to squeal "More bubbles, momma! More bubbles!" Yup, Dannye knows exactly what my girl likes. HOWEVER, that was not even the biggest hit with Lily! As much as she adores her cool new bubble blowing cow -- It was the birthday crown and wand that really made her flip her lid. Lily put on the "bwown" immediately and told me she was now a "PWINCESS Monkey!" and she began prancing around carrying her wand. She has worn it off and on every day since then and it is also a big hit with any of her friends who have come over -- they take turns wearing the crown and holding the wand. Oh, and that wasn't all that Dannye packed in there as an early birthday present for Lil...there was also a birthday girl sash and clip-on earrings (that I am saving for the "big day") and a big bag filled with candy. Lily wanted to induldge right away and wakes up every morning asking for the yummy goodness. Can you say Major Sweet Tooth!?

So thank you from the bottom of our hearts Dannye! You have made my little girl feel like a princess (monkey) and we are both forever grateful for your kindness. Oh, and of course, thank you Ray and Freckles too!!! XOXOXO

Secondly, I finally got to MEET LIVE AND IN PERSON another blogger! Woo-hoo for me! Lynn over at Waiting for Hope also lives in Michigan so we began e-mailing a bit. We discovered that we live quite close so we decided to meet up last Wednesday at the park. We had a lovely time together...aside from the fact that it was 90 degrees and we were all literally melting! Lily really took to Lynn -- especially when she pulled some Play-doh out of her purse and started making miniature flowers! This woman is Crafty with a capital C! We talked a lot. Mostly about our families -- she has a wonderful husband and an incredible son -- and they are all just trying to patiently wait for their sweet little bundle from China. She is a really great person and her son sounds like a really amazing kid, and I really look forward to meeting him. She is a terrific and dedicated mom and Hope is going to learn some really cool things from her...I am happy to be able to follow along on her journey to her daughter.

I have much more to say! We had the Beckering family over today (Stef from "Never Too Many")... oh my, we had some fun. More later!

Have I mentioned that I love summer!?