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Showing posts from 2012

2012 recap

Oh 2012, you've been good to me. * This year I watched my boy grow from a baby to a toddler.   * I published my first book! It's a self-published ebook, but I'm still claiming it. * J and I grew our first vegetable garden. * J built a few things. * I whipped myself into the best shape of my life with long walks, a healthy diet and lots of breast feeding. I've lost 50 pounds since Bennett was born. Let's be honest, 15 of that was probably lost when my two bags of water broke during labor, but still, 50 lbs!! * I did more public speaking than I ever thought I would. * And I watched this little blog continue to grow. Parenting is a whole lot of fun, but it can be a lonely, isolating job. Thank you for coming alongside me as I navigate the joys and frustrations of raising my Bennett while missing my Charlotte. On to 2013!

it's not ideal, but it's okay

I hauled B in to the doctor late yesterday afternoon for a rash look over. I thought it was fifths disease with a little eczema thrown in. Turns out it's just a really bad case of eczema, which means it's time to pare B's diet way down. I think he had too much sugar over the holiday, and, of course, his sensitive system can't process sugar. They pop B on the scale every time we're at the doctor because he's small and we need to be aware of his growth. When the doctor came in we talked about his rash - Oh hey, just eczema, again, we know what to do for that. No steroid cream, thanks. - then I asked about his weight. "Oh, let me check," the doctor said as she turned to the computer. "I noticed how skinny he is around the ribs." She clicked on his weight chart and winced. "Just over 17 lbs. He was in the 1st percentile at your last visit, now he's below, down in the negatives. How is he feeling?" "He's fine. H

when your little has food allergies

On the advice of a family member I finally wrote out a card listing B's allergies, date of birth, doctor information, location of the epi pen and put it in the diaper bag. Um, why didn't I think of that months ago?? I worry constantly about what goes in B's mouth. Whenever we leave our home environment, he breaks out. His skin is very sensitive so  everything  from soap to carpets to food bothers him. Most of his allergies aren't very severe. If he gets his hands on wheat or dairy, it's okay. He will rash up, but it's not life threatening. The only allergy we really worry about is peanuts since we ended up in the ER when he was nine months old for that one. His pediatrician isn't quite sold on the idea that what he eats causes his eczema, but we are. We've seen a direct correlation between food and rashes. And we decided we didn't want to live that way.  Your baby doesn't have to live with painful, itchy eczema and an upset tummy either


Our little cottage requires a fair amount of shifting. Or maybe I just like moving rooms around. Either way the guest/family room is finally done, and J and I both have desk areas (area may be a generous term in J's case). The shorter couch, on the left, folds out to a full bed. J built the shelves, designed and built the cord hiders, and built the coffee table.  J often says he isn't very good at building things, but now that we have something he has built in every room of the house I've told him he must shut up and accept how talented he is. And now for our work stations! J is in the closet in the family room. There is a teeny tiny designed in 1939 closet in that room and we've manged to put some shelving and an Ikea desk in there. If J wants to use his desk (play computer games) he opens the door, pulls out his chair, and sits half in half out of the closet. I have a little spot in our room. I need to frame and hang the scripture print behind Char


I have resolutions this year! I never make New Year's resolutions, but last year I tossed one out, and was able to keep it, so I thought hey, why not make FOUR this year? 1. Stick to our budget!! No more tossing the budget out for a month (hey there December) because we didn't factor in Christmas presents. And no more laziness when it comes to recording receipts.  2. Set aside time every day to read the Bible. 3. Set aside time every day to write. I already do this, but less blogging, more focused writing. I need to fix up my office area upstairs and do the work of putting together the book I was writing before Unexpected Goodbye came along and asked to be written. Writing a paragraph on a napkin when it comes to me as B is eating breakfast isn't working very well. 4. Baby! My 2012 resolution was to avoid a third pregnancy, but in 2013 I would like to have another baby, or at least begin the journey of having my last baby. I'm a little nervous about this becau

this christmas

I got everything I wanted and then some I didn't need a new phone, but J knew I wanted one with better picture taking  capabilities  since I'm ever so slightly enamored with social media and blogging. He is so good to me. I would feel a little less guilty about it if I had a blog that made a bit of money, but I'm not really interested in doing the advertising thing so .... And J still blesses me with a new phone just because he loves me. I'm a lucky girl. We are on the mend here. Wait, no we're not. J is still super sick. He spent his entire week off sick and he has to go back to work tomorrow feeling less than human. And B has fifths disease, also known as slapped cheek syndrome, which is why he looks a bit rough in the pictures above. Last night J slept sitting up on the couch, while B and I snuggled in the big bed. It's so comforting to have a little one who likes to sleep with his face pressed against mine. That's reason nu

merry christmas!! (and one last tradition)

Are you ready? Have you wrapped presents, baked cookies, enjoyed a nice fire? My presents are wrapped, we had a roaring fire yesterday and I've baked lots of high fat foods. I have also  managed to consume more than my share of Christmas calories. And it's not even Christmas yet! I ate SIX cinnamon rolls yesterday (and plan to eat at least two more today). Last night I invited my parents over at the last minute so they could spend time with my in-laws. How unusual is it that my parents and in-laws like each other? I think they would be perfectly happy spending a day together without J and I around, though they like us a whole lot too. Anyway, I asked my parents over and I asked my mama to bring a picture of the lamb cake so I could share it with you. She made me promise to share the significance behind the lamb cake as well. My parents wanted us to know the Christmas story was about more than a baby. That it was about our Lord and Savior who died on the cross for

third christmas

I'm in a cinnamon roll coma. It's been a few hours since I had one, I think I need to have another. Keep the sugar high rolling along. Brunch went off without a hitch this morning. I'm getting pretty good at this cooking/hosting thing. I feel so adult, having Christmas for J's side of the family at our house. I can't believe this is our third Christmas without Charlotte. When I write out the gift tags, I wish her name needed to be penned. When I stack the presents by the tree, I see the empty spaces. When I think about what a two and a half year old girl may like, I wonder what my two and a half year old would want. Life without her is constant wanting and wishing. I cried in the kitchen yesterday when that feeling of someone important missing suddenly and unexpectedly washed over my soul. Darling, darling Charlotte girl, You are loved. You are missed. You are remembered. Merry Christmas, baby girl. Love you to the moon and back. Mama

christmas traditions: box of letters

Oh my word, I am knee deep in the kitchen today. This is my year for big holiday meals: Thanksgiving dinner for my family, Christmas brunch for J's family. I can't believe we're celebrating one family Christmas tomorrow! It doesn't feel like we're a few days out from Christmas actual. Growing up, Christmas was a big deal. On Christmas Eve my parents let us open one present - always a family game - we would read the story of Christmas from the Bible and exchange letters. I'm sure we went to church as well, but I honestly can't remember, and then there was the lamb cake. The letters were for our siblings, parents and Jesus. I think. Goodness, it's been so long I can hardly remember. Perhaps we would only pick one sibling to write a letter to? Anyhow, we would write something nice and then offer to do a kind thing - make the bed, take over a Saturday chore, etc. We would work on our letters for a couple weeks before Christmas, place them gently in th

christmas traditions: sugar cookies {egg, dairy, gluten free!}

I grew up with a slew of Christmas traditions. Every time I talk with others about their family traditions they mention two or three while I go on and on and on. Making sugar cookies is at the very top of my list. It's a tradition I knew I would carry with me when I started my own family. On the other hand, the lamb cake my mama made every Christmas Eve can stay with my family of origin. I understand why we ate a lamb cake every Christmas Eve, but it was still a tad creepy odd. I was a bit worried about making sugar cookies with Bennett. I haven't had a successful gluten free baking experience. My dough is always weird, and it usually doesn't taste very good. Add in the dairy and egg free component and I was sure this would be a fail. But it wasn't! I adapted a gluten free recipe I found online, and it worked really, really well. It tasted pretty darn good considering its lack of the good stuff (butter). May I please have more dough?