Saturday, September 27, 2008

The Baby's Room

This is probably not the post you are hoping for. I have no pictures of a completed room because the room is not complete. In fact, it is still painted pink, has a floral border around the top, with a floral valance and the quilt that used to be on Drew and I's bed.

The crib is in there in pieces, leaning against the wall. The bassinet is ready to go except I need to wash the sheets. The changing pad is sitting on top of the dresser that is still full of the things that we packed inside the dresser.

Yesterday, we picked the paint color, Sassy Green. I have the bedding for the crib. I got the sheet and the crib skirt. And the wall decals. You know what's funny? We aren't planning on buying a new mattress until the baby needs it, so I won't have a mattress to put the sheet on for a couple months!

And I think I might order this for a fun graphic to hang on the wall. Thanks for the idea, Julia! I've always been a little obsessed with monkeys.

The guest bed has this bedding waiting for it.

Drew and I made a deal today. I was feeling very overwhelmed with the room not being ready and time running out. And I know that it doesn't matter if the room is ready for the baby or not. And really, if it were just for the baby, I wouldn't care. But, as soon as the baby is born, my mom is coming. She'll stay, for how long, mom? Then, sometime in December Drew's sister is coming to visit. She leave for Guatemala in early January and won't have another opportunity. Then, the beginning of January, we are traveling to MN for Drew's brothers wedding. Drew's parents will fly home with me and the boys. So, really, I want the room ready for guests. The baby coming is just a good deadline. We were having a hard time getting started today. Drew let me sleep in, I lazily made cinnamon rolls and sat around all morning. Drew took the boys to play outside, shooting rockets and playing catch. Then the football game came on. That is when we started making deals. I expressed my concern with the lack of work going on in the baby's room and he decided that he would do everything if I just left him to it by a certain date. We decided on October 15.

I am not to lift a finger in that room. He will take the wall paper down, tape, trim and paint the walls. Then, we'll decide how we are arranging the wall stickers and I hope to get to make the guest bed because there is just something about making up a new bed. Do you know how hard it is to agree to this? It sounds ideal but then I have no control!

And then, I will pull out the tub of 0-3 month clothing and see what we have. I'm pretty sure we have everything he'll need. I picked up a new package of Carters onesies at a second hand store the other day, along with a Bumbo with a tray.

We may have decided on a name but there is no official word out yet.

And, I'm still looking (not hard) for the perfect coming home outfit. I don't know why that is special to me, but it is!

So, after October 15, I should have a completed baby/guest room. Can't wait to show you pictures!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

I have a dream.

I want to be a writer. I want to be a writer that gets paid to write.

I've done some research and found a book that supposedly tells you about editors of magazines, how to send them queries and what they specifically look for. But, I've read mixed reviews about it. Some say it is the best book and it got them published, others say it is republished every year with the same information.

I found a contest in Real Simple magazine. 1500 words or less to write about The Most Important Day of My Life. I entered. After January 9, I can send them a self addressed stamped envelope and find out who won and who will be published.

Maybe I won't check. I have 3.5 months to decide. Unless I get an email...

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

32 Week Reflection

I had my monthly doctor appointment this morning and I have gained no weight the last 4 weeks. I was so surprised! I mean, my shorts don't fit anymore, pants that I wore all through the pregnancy with Kolby, aren't making it. I can hardly pull them up. So, if I didn't gain weight, what do you call the competing bump in the back?!

This pregnancy has been very easy so far. My biggest complaint is an achy belly. I know, that is nothing.

Even though it has been easy, it has wreaked havoc on my body. Varicose veins have popped out loud and proud, I'm afraid my "normal" jeans will never be normal again. And there is one more thing that I would rather not mention. Let's just say, coughing isn't just coughing anymore.

I am getting so excited to meet this new little person, see how he fits in our family, see who he resembles. With Kolby, I expected a Sage replica and he was definitely not! I'm excited to see his little personality to come out. I think he is going to be physical if his movements are any indication. He might fight the swaddle. But, he needs to be able to hold his own in this house. Sage and Kolby are all ready to try out for the tackle football team.

I am also excited to see what his name will be. We have a few ideas but nothing is grabbing both of us. We might just come back to the hospital to finish filling out his birth certificate! Just kidding. Maybe we'll just call this one Boy or Three. Or maybe we should name him SaKo since that is what will probably come out of my mouth most of the time!

Monday, September 22, 2008

Let's chat, it's been way too long!

We are home and with power! We got home yesterday evening after driving home so that they boys could fall asleep in the car.

And as promised, here are our pictures of the Hurricane Damage around our neighborhood. This is our back deck, no damage, just a lot of debris. Sage will be the first to tell you that God protected us. He and Drew had gone around the day Ike was coming and prayed over all our trees asking God to keep them in the ground, off our house and away from our windows. He certainly did!

This is across the street from us.

See how God protected this house too? The tree branches are right against the windows with nothing broken.

And just so you can get an idea of the size...

This is how we passed our first evening with no power, playing Go Fish by lantern!

We were in College Station, home of the Aggies for the weekend. Our good friends, put us up for the weekend after I called them on Friday and invited us to come. She told me they had a busy weekend but would love to have us. It was the best weekend we've had in a long time. They live on the Traditions golf course so we were able to take golf cart rides, Drew hit some balls, we went swimming and ate lunch pool side. Sage and I got to go see their daughter in her play, Cinderella. It was just a really lovely weekend like a mini vacation.

We came home recharged, rested and encouraged. They are a family that we would like to be just like so it is always fun to watch them as a family.

We were without power for a week. And we still know people who are without power. I can't say that it was too awful for us because we stayed with friends almost the entire time.

We headed to Austin last Sunday and the boys and I stayed until Wednesday. Drew met up with his bosses on Tuesday for a meeting in Austin and traveled home with them. For his meeting and also his birthday which was last Sunday, we had to go get him a whole new outfit since he had packed shorts, flip flops, and a clean shirt.

In Austin, we took a train ride, played at a park and ate some yummy food.

We are so thankful to our friends who quickly and graciously took us in. Our week without power was so comfortable and easy, thanks to them! We spent a total of 4 nights in our house without power. The first night was so awfully hot, the next 2 weren't that bad, thanks to the "cold front" of 60's at night and the last one was slightly uncomfortable. We had plenty of water and food and plenty of ways to get more if we needed it. I mean on Thursday the boys and I went to the mall! We didn't have power but the mall did! Priorities. The mall is across the street from the hospital which is why they had power. I was thankful to eat Chick fil A and watch the boys play in the play place.

Moving on from the Hurricane... I am outgrowing my clothes. Pants are no longer comfortable except one pair of gauchos that are not fit for public. They are just really worn out and ugly looking. I have 5 dresses that I wear on a regular basis when leaving the house. 5 dresses, 7 days. And two of them, I have to wear leggings under because they shrunk and are shorter than I prefer to wear dresses. And most of my shirts are a little short and my belly isn't that huge. There are other parts of me that have gotten, um, larger which are causing my pants to not fit.

I love Costco. But why do they put the XXLarge bages of M&M's right next to the register. I was able to justify the purchase by reminding myself that I told Sage that he and I will make M&M cookies together.

And no, M&M's are not the cause of my pants not fitting, the baby growing in my belly is!

We are back to our regularly scheduled week here with Mothers Day Out tomorrow so I will be going to the doctor and the grocery store by myself.

I have more pictures I want to share of my cute kids doing cute things but they will have to wait for another day. And I need to get a picture of my 32 week baby belly!

32 weeks! Yikes. We will paint the baby's room before the end of September. Which means, I need to start taking down the floral border wall paper. I will get all the 0 - 3 month clothes pulled out in October. I will. I promise myself. We did get the car seat, so we really are ready... kind of.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Another update via Mom

Drew went back to Houston on Tuesday to work and then Kristy and the boys went back Wednesday afternoon. It is a bit cooler now so they are just having a "campout" at home. Drew's work building is OK downtown Houston and so he is charging their phones. When I called, she could not receive it "due to the aftermath of the hurricane" but she did get my text and later called me:) THANKS to their Austin friends for their wonderful hospitality and to all of you who are praying - they are all aware of their many blessings in the midst of the storm! Kristy says the rumor is that they will have electricity by Monday night - she will update ASAP! Meanwhile she and the boys hung out at the mall's play place yesterday and may go to the zoo if it is open today....

Sunday, September 14, 2008

We Weathered the Storm

So, you all know, we made it! Our house is still standing, no broken windows and we are completely safe.

We traveled to Austin this morning, leaving our house at 6am because it was so hot! Tentatively, we are planning on going back tomorrow as we expect Drew to return to work Tuesday.

I want to record what happened, so this may get lengthy.

Thank you all for your prayers and comments!

Friday night, it seemed Ike just wasn't going to come to land. Not because of what news casters were predicting, he just wasn't coming in. I started to get skeptical thinking this wasn't going to be a big deal at all. I mean, it was a little windy but nothing really.

Around midnight, Drew and I decided to go to bed. As I was brushing my teeth, the power went off for about 30 seconds and then came back on. So something was happening. We had decided to sleep on an air mattress in the boys room for two reasons. I wanted them close. And because there bedroom had the smallest window which we could all stay away from.

At about 2, the power turned off and back on again. Drew went down to check what the tv was saying. Ike was heading our way and had just touched land.

We debated about what to do. We have a closet under our stairwell that we originally thought we would all hang out in. In the middle of the night, it looked very small with two sleeping boys. We decided our upstairs hall was the next best option. We closed all the doors and the queen air mattress fit where our three bedrooms converge. We decided the boys would sleep there and Drew and I would share the remaining space in the hallway. Think long twin but narrower. I laid there for about 10 minutes before I realized that my almost 31 week pregnant self could not handle laying on the floor. The pressure points on my hip and shoulder were already hurting. I decided that I could lay at the bottom of the air mattress below the boys feet. During that time, at 2:45 the power switched off and stayed off.

I slept off and on until 6:26 when Kolby woke up. Drew was up every half hour checking the Doppler on his Blackberry. When Kolby woke up, I took off his long sleeve shirt (he sleeps in long pajamas because he gets cold in shorts and doesn't keep covers on) and told him to lay back down. At about 7, Sage woke up. We chatted about the loud noises he was hearing for the first time. The wind and probably debris landing or hitting our roof.

Through out the night, I would wake up to a loud bang or something. I think it was tree branches hitting our house or roof.

One of our worries or fears was a tree or branch coming through one of our windows. We live in a pretty wooded area and have some large windows. It could have been very scary and very destructive if that would have happened.

We got up and went downstairs. Drew checked the Doppler again and we weren't out of the eye yet so we set up a fortress under the stairs and tried to keep the boys in there, away from our very large windows. We ate breakfast of cereal and pop tarts with a juice box. It was hard to keep the boys in there, partly because neither Drew or I wanted to stay in there. It was really uncomfortable for me to sit or lay in there.

About 8, we decided it was okay to venture out of there. And that began our first day of no power. We listened to our radio that picks up television stations and found out that we are under a water conservation. We were to use water sparingly, no showers, flush as little as possible, use bottled water as much as possible.

Around 11, we went on an adventure. We walked around our neighborhood. It was still raining, so we all used umbrellas which the boys thought was very cool. We had seen out our window, one large branch that had fallen. As we walked, we saw about 6 trees that were uprooted and laying against houses. Miraculously, none of the windows were broken nor structure damaged from what we could see.

We went to check on the bayou by the tennis courts. The bayou was up about 20 feet. It was covering the tennis courts, you couldn't even see where the bayou was supposed to start or end. The pool is disgusting. Filled with all sorts of nastiness and there is a lot of clean up to do.

There was just a lot of tree debris all over, making it hard to walk along the paths or in the street. Especially for little legs like Kolby's!

After seeing what had happened in our neighborhood, we were more grateful that God had protected us. I was also grateful that Ike came at night, it was easy to keep the kids out of harms way (the windows) instead of fighting them all day.

As my mom said, there is supposed to be a "cool front" coming in, it should help with the clean up process and make it bearable to be in the city. And by cool front in Houston standards is 80's during the day and 60's at night. Not too cool to my original Iowa standards but it feels great now!

Our original plan had been to stay until Monday or Tuesday and then the kids and I were going to come to Austin to stay with our friends but we couldn't take the heat! We thought we had tougher skin than we actually do. We slept upstairs in our bedrooms which was our first mistake, in my opinion. We should have set up camp downstairs where it was a little cooler. Sage, Drew and I woke up about every hour and a half needing a drink of water. Kolby slept like a champ and didn't wake up at all. It was just disgusting. I was trying to lay so that no part of my skin had to touch another part of my skin. The best way to do that is on your back and I knew that I shouldn't be sleeping on my back 7 months pregnant. So, I tossed and turned all night. Drew tossed and turned all night. Sage kept coming in our room asking for a drink. We were all pretty tired.

We have decided that we are going to skip our camping trip this year because this has been enough!

I am praying that when by the time we go home tomorrow, the water conservation will be over so we can at least take showers and stay cool that way. Power could be out between 3 days or 4 weeks.

I will check in again when I can with pictures. I forgot my card reader to put them on the internet, sorry! You guys have probably seen more pics than me anyway!

If power continues to stay down, I will continue to move around to various friends houses in Texas. I don't think I am up for an 18 hour drive to Iowa by myself with the boys, but if we enter week 2 or 3 maybe my position will change!

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Update via Mom

Just letting everyone know that Kristy called and we talked long enough before we were cut off for me to get the info to post for you: they are all fine!! The storm is slowing and there are lots of small trees and branches down in the neighborhood but their house is standing,unaffected! The boys are "doing great" and slept all night - through all the wind and rain. She did have to remind Sage not to open the refrigerator as we talked! They have a battery radio so are keeping up on the latest news. Two weeks without electricity is the forecast... if they are able, she and the boys will travel out of the area in a couple days. The weather is predicted to continue to be "90 degrees plus the regular humidity" and then a cold front which will be a welcome cooling: "60's at night and 80's in the day" THANK YOU for all your thoughts and prayers! We will update as we hear but for now I am breathing a little easier - she sounded good:)

Friday, September 12, 2008

Specific Prayer

Please pray for our family specifically for obedience from the boys, peace, wisdom and unity.

We've had kind of a hard day with obedience from Sage. I think it is his fear and not knowing what to do with it. We had a family prayer time and I doubt that will be the last!

The hurricane is coming, the official word is that it is really too late to evacuate. It is expected to hit this evening and continue through out the night until 6 or 7am. We are expecting 70 - 80 mile per hour winds. I'm not expecting too much sleep.

I'll post if I can, but I'm not expecting electricity in the morning.

Text messages will be our best form of communication according to the tv. But again, it will be used sparingly.

Nothing *UPDATE with pic of Ike

If you click on the picture and look for the yellow thumb tack, that is where our house is and you can see where Ike is coming. (Thanks Drew for doing this!)

A good link to look at to see where Ike is going is:

We are about 60 miles inland.


Nothing to report yet. Things are supposed to start happening late afternoon or evening or later.

Right now, it is just a normal day. If I hadn't been watching tv to see what is happening, I wouldn't have a clue anything was brewing. I don't normally watch the news or the weather channel but Drew keeps me informed.

Drew is home from work today, almost the whole city is shut down. Schools, malls, stores, churches. No one wants to get caught I guess.

Drew took the boys swimming this morning. We figure it might be the last opportunity for a couple days. And they needed to get some energy out.

So, we wait. And we try to act like it is normal to have 165 paper plates, 175 paper bowls and an incredible amount of food sitting around your house, with all our canned goods stacked in the refrigerator, and a grill sitting in our dining room.

I'm not so scared of the actual hurricane. Maybe it is because I don't know or completely understand the devastation that can occur.

I am most nervous about living without electricity. A guy at Lowe's who has lived in Houston for 30 years, told Drew to expect 4 - 5 days with no electricity. We are as prepared as we can be for that but it makes me nervous to have no air conditioning or fans in 90 degree heat. Drew and I have talked a little about how long the kids and I will tough it out before packing up and heading to friends. He will have to stay to work. I think our limit is 2 or 3 days. We'll see. And I wonder, how easy will it be to leave? What about flooding?

I have to trust God that he will get us through whatever he has for us. I know he will.

And a random fear, having the baby come early. I've heard about changes in the atmospheric pressure sending moms into labor, I just hope and pray that it doesn't happen to me.

Those are some thoughts swirling in my head. And that I am going to enjoy having the internet while it still works!

If electricity does go out, we only have cell phones so our main point of contacts will be our parents, so if you need to know, call them for updates.

Thanks for all the prayers, comments, and phone calls that we have received.

I'll keep posting until I can no longer!

Thursday, September 11, 2008


That is the feeling I have had going through out today. It just seems like a normal day and it has been. Except that we have been preparing for a hurricane with 75 mile per hour winds and the possibility of not having electricity.

Part of me feels like it is going to end up being a thunderstorm and all this energy and plans will be for naught. And I will celebrate if that is the case.

Part of me is scared. I don't know what to expect from high winds, what does that mean exactly? Damage will be done but to what extent, where and to whom?

I'm nervous for Sage's reaction. He does fine in thunderstorms but every time we talk about the hurricane or watch something on tv about it, he says there will be lots of rain sos we have to leave!

We're in the no turning back mode now. We are staying until the worst is over and then we'll reevaluate. The kids and I can make it a few days without electricity but if it gets too long, well, we might be rethinking our position.

Last I saw, Ike is supposed to hit tomorrow night about 9pm. I'm prepared for another ominous day tomorrow. With some rain.

And maybe a trip to Target for a few more supplies.

Preparing for Ike

I went shopping at Costco. I can't admit how much I spent. I bought mostly non-perishable food and water. I got a propane tank too. We're mostly concerned with living without electricity for a few days.

Sage is concerned with how he will wash his hands. And he totally voted for leaving.

We're hunkering down and getting ready to hang out as a family. Our church is closed for the weekend, Friday to Sunday. They are going to have one service Sunday night at 6:30.

I'm beat after getting groceries and carrying them all in. I mean it is still 98 degrees with 50% humidity.

Drew is on his way home, but he hit traffic so it could be an hour or more when it is normally 35 minutes.

This post was funnier and more informative in my head and I just can't think through what should be said.

I'll check back when I can!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

A Huge Test of Paitence and Kindness

Being woken up four times during my nap today by my four year old.

First time: He measured himself with the tape measurer and needed to show me how tall he is.

Second time: He wanted to be done with rest time and get off the couch.

Third time: He was all sweaty from playing downstairs and the white fans on the wall weren't working (air conditioning vents).

Fourth time: He helped himself to a water bottle from our stash in case of bad weather and that cooled him off. He thought I needed to know. Did I mention that this was the bottled water that sat in the van for a day before I brought it in just two hours before he drank it. I bet it was really refreshing!

Also, the shorts that I bought in June are really tight and uncomfortable. And my shirts don't cover my belly as well. Hello, week 30. And yes, I do need shorts still it is 90 degrees and humid everyday still. I am counting down the days in September, people say it gets nicer towards the end of September. I'll believe it when I feel it.

And my varicose veins! Oh my!

Tuesday, September 09, 2008


I’ve always been a little envious of people who get to sit in Starbucks sipping something yummy and typing on their laptop. And now, I have entered their ranks.
I sip my white chocolate mocha iced and type this. I know I only have a little over a month to enjoy this phenomenon and then a new little boy will be with me where ever I go. And if he is like my first two, sitting nicely in his car seat while I type away, won’t happen.

But, I have a problem; I don’t know what to type. I can’t think of what to say. Nothing interesting so I think I should write something funny, but even that, I am having a hard time with.

It’s Tuesday again, which means Mothers Day Out. Today has gone smoother, less running around with my head cut off, more getting errands accomplished. But I haven’t really wanted to get them done.

I crossed a few off my list because I just didn’t want to. Nothing important. Nothing life threating. Just looking for things to hang on our walls. Because, again, it probably won’t happen if it doesn’t happen before this baby is born. Or it will just take a year or two longer.

I did buy more water and a package of diapers just in case Ike changes paths again. It doesn’t look like we will get hit, but it won’t hurt to have one more package of bottled water. It won’t go bad.

I also got more paint samples for the baby’s room. Because the plan is to paint in there this weekend. See, the important things are getting done.

The hype for these hurricanes is turning out to be worse than the bite. Rain and wind, I can handle. It is when we start making plans to leave that gets me a little scared. Twice now, we have emailed our friends asking if we can crash with them if need be. Already, we have heard enough stories to know to get out of Dodge if things look bad.

The worst part is that these chairs are kind of uncomfortable.

Now, I’m starting to think I should have gone to the mall to look for a birthday present for Drew, it’s on Sunday and I have zero ideas.

**I'm home now. I even picked the boys up early from MDO. Did you know that 2 year olds take naps and 4 year olds watch videos for a rest at MDO? I kind of feel jipped. I thought we would get home and the kiddos would conk out so I could recover from my morning of errands. Then I had the brilliant idea to go swimming. Except it's Tuesday. I know that means nothing to you, but our pool is closed for super chlorination on Tuesdays. So, my second plan is a dvd. Toy Story for the million and eighth time.

Monday, September 08, 2008

Nap Time

When did your kids give up napping?

I had decided that Sage needed to give his up. When he takes an afternoon nap, he has a hard time falling asleep that night. Like put him to bed at 8, he's still awake when we are going to bed at 10. And then for some reason, he'll wake up earlier the next day, around 6:30.

So today, I told him he didn't have to take a nap but rest on the couch while looking at books while I napped upstairs.

I came down after an hour and fifteen minutes. He was asleep on the couch. He rolled off the couch, wanted to lay back down and fell asleep again. He slept until 4:30.

That means he'll fall asleep around 11. And wake up around 5. Oh, I exaggerate, a little.

But tomorrow, we will not take naps! Well, he won't. I hope.

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

5 Hours

When I first signed the boys up for Mothers Day Out and realized I would have 5 hours to myself, to do with what I pleased, I was nervous, guilty, and excited. I had grand plans. Plans of no more grocery trips with two boys, no more Target trips with two boys, the gym, taking time to look at decorating stores, and maybe a pedicure or two, you know before the baby comes, after it is hard to reach my feet.

And then yesterday happened. And I realized how quickly 5 hours can pass.

Drop off boys.
Chat with another mom, leave at 9:20.
Drive to Target.
Get what is on my list plus some Little Debbie's. Browse in shoes and maternity.
Drive home.
Check email, read a few blogs.
Write a post.
Fold laundry.
Change laundry.
Make dinner menu.
Write grocery list.
Drive to grocery store.
While driving, make a few phone calls.
Get groceries.
Drive through Chick fil A. (I was starving, it was 12:30!)
Drive home.
Carry in groceries.
Unpack freezer and fridge stuff.
Leave rest for later.
Shovel in fries with ketchup.
Drive to Hobby Lobby.
Return something at Hobby Lobby.
Go to pick up boys.

5 hours. Gone, just like that. The necessary stuff got done and nothing more.

I am going to admit that I judged the mothers who put their kids in MDO, two days a week. What do they do with all that time? I wondered. Now I know. Just enough to make it feel worthwhile.

And I didn't finish unpacking the groceries or folding laundry until later that evening, I was exhausted.


I'm alone in my house. It is quite strange knowing that no one will walk through the front door shattering my quiet house.

Today is the first day of Mothers Day Out. I have 5 glorious hours to do with what I want. Okay, need to do. I have already been to Target. I need to make my grocery list and head to the grocery store then hopefully a couple of stores I hate taking my kids to, but need to get to for some decorating stuff.

It's exciting stuff, let me tell you. The boys were so excited to go, Sage kept asking me if we could leave. And they were so proud to carry their new lunch boxes.

I forgot my camera so I ran back in the house to get it, so you get to see them buckled into car seats.

Standing in front of the church entrance.