Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Merry Christmas from our family to yours!

Christmastime is most definitely my favorite time of the year. Each year I eagerly anticipate all of the sights, sounds, and smells this special season brings. If it were up to me, December might never end! Our neighborhood is adorned with sparkling lights, blow-up Christmas figures, and nativity scenes. I enjoy taking the longer route home in order to soak in as much Christmas spirit as possible. Even if I've had a crummy day, the scenery makes me bright and cheery!

This year in particular has been especially wonderful for me. Isaac is old enough now to somewhat understand the reason we celebrate Christmas. As we drive throughout our neighborhood and look at the nativity scenes, he tells me about the characters in the Christmas story. He knows that baby Jesus was born as our savior, that He died on the cross to take away our sins. This year he learned that Mary rode a donkey into Bethlehem as Joseph walked at her side. He understands the wise men wear robes, (not jammies!) and the shepherds carry staffs to help them walk their long journey.

As I look ahead to our future as a family, my hope is for Isaac to cherish and treasure Christ above all else: above himself, family, friends, and even presents. This year we implemented a new Christmas morning tradition, which I hope lasts throughout our child-rearing years. Before opening any gifts, we read the Christmas accounts as told in both Matthew and Luke. We talk about the stories and think about what each character/person had to go through in God's perfect, providential plan of redemption. As Isaac grows into maturity, I look forward to his thoughts and questions about this part of Scripture. Hopefully, it will be a long time before he asks us what an "espoused wife" is!

As Christmas winds down, we wish you a blessed year with your family. May the Lord continue revealing Himself to you in new, profound ways. As you ring in the new year, remember to thank God for his perfect son, the atoning sacrifice for our sins.

Here are some highlights of our Christmas:

Playing with some new presents with Grandma and Grandpa
Gammy gave Isaac a new helicopter. He likes spinning the propeller.

This is "Whac-A-Mole" - hysterical! The premise of the game is to thump all the moles on their heads. They laugh and say, "Miss me" whenever you don't hit them!

Here is Isaac's cheesy Christmas smile.

This is the best photo of the three of us. How pathetic that we couldn't do better! At least no one is melting down!

Grandma Bobby gave Isaac two super cute rhyming puzzle books. Here he is opening them at her house.

Look at his cute little fist propping up his head!

Matt is so good with our boy. He is a wonderful father. These are two of the best gifts I've ever received! Thank you, Jesus!

MERRY CHRISTMAS AND HAPPY NEW YEAR!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Reminiscing

I was going through some pictures last night and stumbled upon these photos of Isaac. Despite all the ups and downs and twists and turns that characterized Isaac's first year of life, I would do it all over again. He brought us much joy and continues to do so. For those of you who weren't with us during this year, these are for you! (These don't include the very early months b/c those pics are on an external hard drive.)

Matt's Grandma Loyce and Aunt Lynne in Myrtle Beach

Beach bum

This is my friend, Sarah (Amanda's twin sister) and me. She is holding her niece, Liliana. This was Memorial Day weekend 2008 while we were still in Bedford. I miss you Sarah, Amanda, and Liliana!

Isaac was about to take a nap while we were lounging at the beach.

Matt was getting him to crack up and bury himself in our covers. I'll never forget this moment!

My mom bought Isaac this toy, and he loved it. He was actually playing with it this morning - two years later!

I was changing his diaper one day and he became completely infatuated with his toes!

We were on our way out to hit the streets of Quebec.

Exersaucer time!

At dinner in Quebec

Sleepy boy couldn't wait until we got home!

Jesse, Jenny, and Natalia were in our Bible study. Isaac and Natalia had many a play date during our time in Bedford!

Strolling along the Charles River one morning. Oh, how I miss New England scenery. It is fantastic!

Matt took me to see the Boston Ballet for my birthday. We tried getting a family picture when we got home. I don't think Isaac was the least bit interested!

I thought this was a cute face to showcase!

Daddy and Isaac on our way to church service one morning. The couple I nannied for gave Isaac this outfit. It was adorable! Conway family, we miss you!

I didn't take the red eye out yet, but I couldn't stand to not show you this face full of love and chub!

Daddy liked to let Isaac air out after bathtime!

Isaac loved the beach. We hope to go back to visit Matt's family sometime this spring!

Kisses!

One of my favorite girls in the whole wide world. Leoni was our neighbor and loved to come play with Isaac. She is just too precious for words.

Who can resist soft baby skin?

Ahhhh... he's so sweet holding his bottle!

Matt absolutely loved these jammies. He didn't want me to ever retire them. Babies do grow, so inevitably I had to!

Setting out for a stroll through Lexington. Pete's Coffee, how I miss you dearly!

My two loves

Isaac's first taste of rice cereal. He was one hungry boy!

Tonight I leave you with the cutest grin I've ever seen!
I hope you enjoyed this snapshot of Isaac's first year of life!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Looks Tasty!

For a while now, I've been wanting to try a new chicken pot pie recipe. It's been a long time since I made one, and I wasn't overly crazy about that recipe. My brother savored every bite of it, but it didn't strike my fancy. I just discovered this looks like a glimpse of food heaven one, so I thought I'd share the link with all of you. In fact, why don't you make it today and let me know how it turns out? And if it's good, you should invite me over for a dish of it!

Friday, October 16, 2009

Friday faves

Today is great because:

~ I'm sitting here in the peace and quiet.
~ Isaac is taking a good, long nap.
~ Crowd pleasing lasagna is on the menu tonight.
~ My hunky-hunk hubby will arrive home promptly at 4pm today.
~ I'll choose to show extra grace if that same hubby arrives later than 4pm today.
~ Isaac loves telling me things and really loves asking questions.
~ Isaac has the sweetest voice (when he isn't whining that is!).
~ Clean sheets will greet me tonight as I fall asleep.
~ As I glance at Isaac's Coco-Nutty Monkey Play-Doh set, I grin over how much he enjoys it!
~ Fall is in the air.
~ Peasant Princess session two is coming up tonight.
~ God gives abundant grace for every season.
~ A friend is praising God for working in her marriage.
~ Project SSAM is here!
~ I'm not overly concerned that my house is not completely in order at this moment.
~ Tomorrow is filled with three fun events.
~ Matt can relax this evening and not think about his thesis.
~ Matt is supposed to surprise me with something today.
~ I'm hopeful that surprise is a Starbucks chai latte.
~ The weekend is here.
~ Most of all: This is the day the Lord has made. I will rejoice and be glad in it!

Today is good!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Making Trains with Cars

There is no doubt that Isaac has a strong connection with his cars. Maybe it's because he's an only child right now, and they keep him company while Mommy is working around the house. Last week, I was in the kitchen putting away some things. I peeked into the living room to check on my boy. This is what I found - isn't he just the cutest?! Check out the first car in his train going around the roll top desk. He put two smaller cars on top of it! Ingenious idea!
I have a super cute video clip of him talking about the long train, but I think the file is too large for Blogspot. Nevertheless, these pictures capture his love for cars and his meticulous and methodical thinking processes! When I watch Isaac discover and learn things, my heart can't help but want to have more children. He is a gift! (Perhaps we'll start trying again in a four or five months; we shall wait and see!)
He makes these by himself! What a great way to entertain himself and develop those cognitive skills! (Check out the two smaller cars on top!)

This is his first train of the day. He likes to arrange the trains from biggest to smallest. Sometimes he'll end with a big caboose!

I guess he needed a break to play with another car!

Well, he's back to his first love - BOOKS!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Happy Birthday, Isaac!

Mmmmm... birthday cake!

Our little lovie turned two years old yesterday! We had a great time celebrating him with our friends and family. We are blessed to have so many people in our lives who love Isaac. Here are a few pictures from his party. Unfortunately, Matt and I were preoccupied and forgot to take lots of pictures. I don't have very many, but I'm hoping some people who were at the party will send us some of their pictures!

Haven and Isaac (not the best pic, but it's the only one of them we took!)

Checking out the cake with Deborah, Kate and Mati

A radio flyer tricycle from Gammy (my mom).

Some of the goodies. These banana pops were fantastic. I'm treating myself to another one tomorrow!

Isaac wanted the grader and the dump truck off of his cake. Grandpa Ken (Matt's dad) is ready to eat the cake!

Precious Mathios getting ready for his lunch - Okay, don't you just want to gobble him up?!

Isaac and Daddy working on a castle with his new blocks before bedtime. Aunt Kelly bought these for him.

Thanks, everyone for joining us in celebrating Isaac's birthday!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Tasty lil' cups

Check out this fun breakfast idea. I made them for our house church last night, and everyone enjoyed them. You don't need to bake them very long if you like a slightly runny yoke. So easy, so darling, so good! Try them out and taste for yourself!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Excited 2 Learn

You have to check out this website! http://www.excited2learn.com/shop/index.php?main_page=page&id=1

I know Amanda and Sarah from Boston and became good friends with both of them. (Look at how adorable they were as toddlers!) I met Amanda while teaching in the Lincoln school district. I tutored a few of her students. She is an amazingly gifted teacher. She was also my neighbor! I then met her twin sister, Sarah. They are both incredibly talented. The first time I visited their parents' house, I was blown away by their artwork. And, they completed most of it when they were very small children! These weren't simple stick figure drawings. The house is outlined with intricate drawings of figures, animals, and abstract concepts along with many sculpture pieces. So, if you want something unique and educationally sound, check out their items and support these wonderful ladies! I know they will appreciate it!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Be anxious about nothing...

but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:6,7 NKJV emphasis mine)

As I read this passage last night, the Lord brought life to it in a new way. How many times have I read this and not paused long enough to let the Word richly penetrate my very existence? Over the past two years I've battled with fear of having more children. When describing my thoughts to other women, particularly moms, I have often said how anxious I felt soon after having Isaac. I know part of it was the natural human process of carrying a child for nine months. Hormones don't always cooperate with us ladies! Some of it though, is in my control. This passage tells me to be anxious about nothing. Nada. Not one thing at all. Ever.

I am to commit my concerns to Christ - every single one of them. While reading this last night, I realized I tend to quickly pass over the second part. When I commit myself to the Lord, He gives me the peace of God and guards my heart and mind. Did you hear that loud and clear? The peace of God! Not the peace of man, which diminishes at every twist and turn. I have a choice to let my worries overcome me or to lift them up to the One who has overcome the world.

The next few verses in Philippians exhort us to keep our thoughts on Christ. We are to think about things that are true, noble, pure, lovely and praiseworthy. When we meditate on the nature of Christ, we don't have room for worry or anxiety. I realize I'll never perfect this in my lifetime, but through the Spirit I have the power to submit everything, heart or head, to the Lord.

I believe God is working in me; He is teaching me to trust His plan, not my own. Now, I joyfully look forward to expanding our family if that is what He has for us. Thankfully, Jesus is patient and loving toward me. He knows the life He gives is a life of growth. Today, I choose a life of peace, free from anxious thoughts. Tomorrow, I will choose the same. It is always a choice. It is a choice to sin or submit. What do you choose? Let's trust God at His Word as He floods our hearts and minds with His undeniable peace!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Rainy Days R Fun!

Isaac and I were in Waverly last weekend visiting my mom and some other family and friends. Here's a video of him playing in the rain after our morning trip to Kroger. He was very fussy and tired, but when we got back to Mom's house, he perked right up and didn't want to go inside!
video

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Dirty Laundry

Did I fool you by the title? Did you think I might tell you some deep, dark secret? Think again, friends! I simply need some advice on getting out set-in stains on clothing. I did a few loads of laundry on Monday. As I went to put things away today, I noticed four of Isaac's shirts now have stains on them. I didn't catch this before adding them to the wash, so now I'm not sure if I can tackle this dilemma. Arrrggh! Any ideas? I know many of you rave about OxiClean. Do you think it might work? If you have any suggestions, please leave a comment!

Friday, June 19, 2009

Delight

Isaac last summer!

I have to type this really quickly, but I wanted to make sure I captured the simple memories of my day today. Forgive me if it's a rambly post! I must tell you how wonderful my beautiful boy, Isaac, is to me. He is the best. God overwhelms me with the goodness of this precious creation.

Matt has been on summer break this week. It has been refreshing to relax and do whatever we want. (I'll post more about our lazy-dazy week sometime soon.) We spent most of our day today working in the yard. I think we were overthrown by the weeds! So, we set up Isaac's little blow-up pool and let him splish and splash while we pulled and trimmed. He was running through the sprinkler and getting in and out of the pool. I just can't really put this into words like I was hoping to, but all I can say is how much I delight in seeing my happy, joyful, and tender-hearted Isaac. I complained so much about him as an infant; I cannot believe I ever took such a blessing for granted. God has convicted me many times on this, but this week it really made sense. Why would I ever grumble and gripe about such a gift?

As Isaac gets older, I'm noticing simple things that make him tick. For instance, he loves to cuddle and touch. Right now it might be his primary love language, which is okay with me since I love it as well! I cannot even count how many times a day he comes up to me, wraps his tiny arms around my legs and says, "Ahhhhhh". Or, how many times he says, "Hug me." and "Hold you.". My heart melts, and warmth fills my bones each time he initiates something with Matt or me. He's not only tender toward Matt and me but also to other people, including children. I'm so thankful I can say this about my son. His temperament and personality speak volumes of the Lord's fearfully and wonderfully made creation. I get to experience this goodness every day!

Thank you, thank you, thank you, Jesus for allowing me to be Isaac's mommy. Please let me never again complain about what You are doing. May Matt and I continue to raise him Your way and teach him the way he should go. Give us wisdom and patience in teaching and training Isaac. You are more than good to me, Lord. Teach me to thank You in all circumstances and to fix my eyes on things above. Please help Isaac trust in You as he grows - to know You have a good plan for his life. Lord, we had a great day as a family, and I praise You for loving us every minute of every day. We owe all of it to You.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Wahoo, Wahoo, Wahoo!!!

If you are like me, then one of your not-so-favorite things to do is going to the dentist. You know, it's not that I have anything against a dentist per se. After all, good dentists help keep mouths in tiptop shape. I have a very good reason for not enjoying a dental visit - I ALWAYS have cavities. No one wants to hear this kind of news. My cavities are not just simple one-step filling kinds of cavities. Crowns or root canals seem to be my fate. When I was a freshman in college, I had a routine cleaning at the dentist's office. "Kindly" informing me, the dentist said I had SEVEN cavities. What? Are you kidding me? Turns out I only need to glance at a Starburst or Twinkie to have a mouth overtaken by sugar bugs. Okay, I admit flossing was not my forte at the time, but over the years I have taken better care of my teeth. For some reason though, my teeth are only satisfied when silver or porcelain enters the scene!

This morning I had my routine teeth cleaning. Matt and I typically prepare ourselves for the worst. He's used to my mouthful of ailments, but this time, he said he wanted a good report. A great report is what he got! I am cavity free, my friends. Perhaps you're underestimating my joy at this moment. Allow me to be a tad more forthcoming... I'm ECSTATIC! It's literally been years since I've had such a positive visit with my dentist. In fact, today the dentist said I was boring! Well, Dr. John, you and I both must be doing something right if you consider me boring. And in this case, I'm totally okay with that label!

Oh, the joy of having seemingly healthy teeth. I do hope I can go another 6 months cavity free. Looks as if I must throw out all the sweets..... Nanh! I just won't eyeball (or eat!) them as often!

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

May Review

I have not been in the mood at all lately to blog. I've been too absorbed reading through everyone else's including some dearly loved food blogs. May was overall good in our house. Except that I'm one year older now - sniff, sniff! Matt took me to the Cincinnati Ballet for my birthday. Perhaps it is his way to help me feel that being as close to thirty as possible isn't so bad! We had a great time, but unfortunately, we forgot to get some pictures of us. It's okay because I did capture some other memorable moments from last month. So, here is a little re-cap of our month in pictures.


Isaac playing at the park. Daddy and Isaac love going to the park together, especially when Mommy is trying to fix dinner.

Doesn't Sharon look so cute holding up this baby onesie? My house church girls and I hosted a baby shower the the women's center, which is located here in Dayton.
Look at all of the baby goodies donated! We also had a nice cash donation, which I used to purchase $20.00 Walmart cards. We had a great time talking about the gift of life over a nice brunch. Thank you, everyone who came and/or donated something. I took the gifts to the center today; they were very grateful!

My friend, Kate, opening one of the presents - a cozy little blanket!

Matt's cousin, Christine, tied the knot two weeks ago. We wanted Isaac to partake of the festivities. You all know I dance whenever I go to a wedding, and my son is following in my footsteps. Here we are at the end of the night finishing the Electric Slide and some other shake-your-booty types of dances!

Oh no, Mr. Isaac. You are MUCH too young and they are MUCH too old!

On our way home after our late night out, we saw fireworks downtown. We pulled over to let Isaac see them. Hey, one more hour out wouldn't make a difference! Matt covered Isaac's ears during the finale. They were some loud 'crackers!

Haven in the morning after our Memorial Day celebration. We spent time with friends and then stayed over for even more fun!

Isaac loves his friend's little red car. Reminds me so much of the Flintstones!

This is one of my favorite pictures of Isaac this year. Look at his pretty blue eyes! The boy loves him some corn on the cob. My brother, Sean, and Matt introduced Isaac to corn a few months ago. He doesn't like when it's all gone!
I hope you all had a nice May. It doesn't seem like it should be June already, does it? Well, I'm now gearing up for the pool. I haven't taken Isaac yet this year, but I will very soon. I'll hopefully post some pictures of us swimming. Let's hope I get them posted before Christmas rolls around!