Friday, December 19, 2008

A Couple Pictures

Some random pictures from our week....

It turns out Charlotte LOVES sour-cream. I put some on top of her beans and rice the other night and she ate it right off the top. And then asked for more.

I've been on a quest to find all-natural food dye. I've wanted to do our traditional Christmas cookies, but Brennan can't have the food coloring that I would normally put in the icing. I could special order it, but it's SO expensive. So I tried some of my own. I used beet juice and turmeric powder (with milk and powdered sugar). You really can't taste the beet juice at all, and the turmeric I could only taste, slightly, on the cookies with ALL yellow icing. So we used the yellow as an accent color :). We frosted our sugar cookies with pink, yellow and white frosting...and my kids had no clue that this wasn't quite normal.
(you can see the beet juice and turmeric in the background)

We've hit another new phase in life. The phase when your children can actually take pictures of YOU! Brennan felt so grown up the other night when we asked him to take our picture. Not bad huh?

Wednesday, December 17, 2008


I love chocolate covered cherries!

Tyler does not. He calls them a conflict of interests.

That makes me laugh really hard :)

Monday, December 15, 2008

My Weekend in Numbers

4- number of people in our house who've had the stomach flu in the past 48 hours.

12- loads of laundry I've done in 48 hours. Apparently I have a "sanitize" option on my washer. I'm not exactly sure what it does, or how, but you better believe I've pushed that button with every load I've done.

6- sets of sheets that have been washed.

1- number of "beds" I've made on the bathroom floor so as to contain bodily fluids to tiled area.

50- (at least) the number of Clorox wipes I've used on doorknobs, sinks, toilets, tables, toys, etc.

2- number of pillows that fit safely in my washer.

3- number of people that are able to reach the toilet before throwing up...or at least make it off the carpet.

1- number of babies who give absolutely NO warning before throwing up all over anything( and anyone) within 10 feet.

6- number of hours it's lasted with each person

4- number of consecutive hours of sleep I've had in the last 3 days.

Other Notables:

I have a superpower. I do NOT get the stomach flu. I've not had the stomach flu since I was in elementary school, despite having it in my house every year since having children. (I am knocking on wood right now)

Calvin said last night "let's pray to Jesus so I won't be sick anymore."

Calvin says "spitting up" instead of "throwing up". This would be funny to you if you had seen the amount of nastiness that came out of him yesterday, definitely NOT spit up.

Although Tyler is in bed with a stomach ache, he has not thrown up yet. There is NOTHING worse than seeing a 6'5" man hunched over a toilet. I hope not to, but I have a feeling I'll be seeing that later today.

Thursday, December 11, 2008


I have been RIDICULOUSLY hormonal the past 24 hours. Here are some of the things I've cried over....

* I went to a new eye doctor this morning. He goes to our church and, apparently, is very kind to people in full-time ministry. He charged me NOTHING for my eye exam. I blamed my tears on my sensitive eyes :)

*That same doctor also got me new glasses for COST and samples galore. I waited to cry until I was in the car.

* While at World Market I found several Christmas candies that Brennan can eat, meaning they have NO artificial flavors or colors. Candy canes, chocolate santa's and chocolate snowmen, gingerbread men dipped in white chocolate. He will be SO excited to eat candy!! This REALLY made me tear up. It's so great to find treats he can have because I feel like there's so much he can't have.

* I talked to a friend, who I consider the expert on the Feingold Diet (the diet we have Brennan on), and she told me how to make red, yellow and green food coloring. I've been trying to figure out how to do all natural frosting for Christmas cookies. She has been so kind to me and I've never even met her in person. I'm actually tearing up just thinking about what this journey would have been like without her help.

* I was so tired when my alarm went off this morning I WANTED to cry, seriously!

* I'm taking a salad to a Christmas party we have tonight but I forgot to go to the store this morning when I only had 2 kids with me. Now I have to go after school and take ALL 3 kids with me. There's a chance that by the time we're out of the store we'll ALL be crying!

* We're getting new storm windows and we've been waiting for weeks to have them installed. They came today to put them in! I have NO IDEA why this made me teary.

As a side note...I really need to take a shower (yes, it's 2:00 in the afternoon, so what?). But there's a window in our bathroom. What if they decide to replace that window while I'm in there? I KNEW I should have showered this morning!!

Monday, December 1, 2008


I had always wanted to start something, a tradition if you will, to mark the season of advent for my children. I wanted to prepare my children for the celebration of the birth of Jesus. We do quite a bit to prepare for Christmas but most of it revolves around decorating, gifts, food, etc. We talk plenty about the real reason for Christmas, but I wanted something tangible to do with my kids during the season of Advent to help them understand it all.

Last year a sweet friend gave us an amazing gift, The Jesse Tree. The Jesse Tree seeks to tell the story of God's redemptive plan for us through 25 symbols from the old and new testament. The symbols trace the heritage of Christ from the beginning of creation. Ours has a devotional book and 25 ornaments (symbols) to hang on a small tree. So everyday, starting December 1st, our kids open an ornament from under the tree, and we read the corresponding devotion in our book. Each devotion explains the symbol using scripture, songs, questions and prayers. Today's ornament was a small globe to signify that Christ, in God, existed before all of creation, and that God created everything. Other symbols signify sin and our need for a savior, God's covenant with His chosen people, prophesies foretelling characteristics or events concerning the "new shoot" from the stump of Jesse, prophesies of Bethlehem, the Shepherd and the suffering servant.

This is the book...

These are all the ornaments (symbols) before I wrapped them.

This is our little tree we use as our Jesse Tree. The kids unwrap one ornament each day and hang it on the tree.

When I got out the ornaments and the book today the boys were so excited. Even on those days when we're rushing from dawn to dusk, it's the boys who at the end of the day say "we have to do our Jesse Tree".

What a Week

I apologize for leaving you all hanging like that. I'm sure it's been an agonizing week as you've awaited the results of the contest. Well, you were ALL right, but it's not all that fair since I know everyone that commented. The virtual high-five will go to Sherri though because she hasn't seen my children in years. In fact, I think the last time we were together I was very pregnant with Calvin (is that right sherri?).

Anyway, Calvin (3) is on the left and Brennan (5) is on the right. B is still taller than Cal (although Cal outweighs him), but he has longer legs and Cal has a longer torso. So when they're sitting Calvin looks like he's taller. Quite funny.

So here's the reason I didn't post a conclusion last Sunday like I said I would...I was in the hospital with Charlotte! UGGGGGG. All day Saturday she had the symptoms of a run of the mill cold. But by Saturday night she couldn't breathe very well. Her diaphragm was working so hard but she was struggling to move air through her lungs. She couldn't sleep so I held her for a couple of hours just watching her and praying that she would begin to breathe easier. At about 11:00pm her nostrils started to flare with each breath (that's the tell tale sign all you moms out there) so I took her into the ER. Her oxygen saturation levels were very low and she was getting pale and listless. To make a long story short she had bronchitis and her lungs just couldn't take it. Her doctor admitted her and we stayed until Monday. It was a VERY LONG 36 hours. With all the drugs in her system she couldn't sleep at all and she was terrified every time a nurse came close.

But all is well now. She is still a little sicky and fussy, but she's breathing! We came home from the hospital and went full force into a week of Thanksgiving celebrations. It was a great way to end a week that started out pretty scary.

Speaking of Thanksgiving, we had a great one! This year we were with Tyler's side of the family. His dad's on Thursday and his mom's of Friday. Yes, back to back turkey dinners. I really shouldn't eat again until Christmas. We have much to be thankful for. We woke up on Thursday morning and sat in our jammies on the living room floor with the kids and asked them what they were thankful for. They gave many answers like our house, our toys, our family, all great answers. We are abundantly blessed in material ways. But as we shared with our kids, those things all pale in comparison to our real reason for thankfulness. We are loved by a God who sent His Son to die for us. We are thankful because Christ has made us thankful! In the words of Calvin "I am fankful that Jesus died".