28 January 2016

The Big Five.

Well, it's been two years since my last post.  Ha!  This is a compilation of thoughts in no particular order or with any writing skill.

My little Apricot just turned five.  FIVE!  I made her a pinata cake for her birthday, and she just loved it.  When she cut it and the jelly beans spilled out, her face was pure happiness!

Obviously Apricot has grown (very much!) since her Last Day of Two.
She reads now.  Like, full-blown will read the instructions on her school work reads.  She's been reading like that for at least six months.  It's so cool to hear her reading signs in the back seat of the car as we drive.  Not so cool (but funny!) when she reads my texts as they ding on my phone.

We are homeschooling her, and she is (and has been) doing first grade work.  Most days she does her work easily and without complaint.  We were doing Spanish for a bit, but have since stopped for no reason other than lack of discipline and consistency from me.  She loved it and was really picking it up!

She is still an only child, and we are wondering what God has in store for us in that department.  Foster/adopt?  New baby born?  Both?  Neither?

She is a silly, caring, generous, sweet-hearted little girl who loves to get dressed up.  She loves dresses and heels and jewelry and scarves and anything girly.  She walks better in heels than her mother.  No joke.

She has a 10-month-old, 70 pound puppy who pulled her on the sled in the snow the other day.  That was super fun.  :)  We kept telling her she was the luckiest girl in all the land.

She talks about God and Jesus endlessly.  My Momma heart is so warmed by this.  She is always singing or dancing or playing something musical.  She knows how to play Joy to the World on the piano.

She is always asking us to play with her.   Most recently it's been "cops and robbers" or "Mary and Joseph".

Her pretend name is Rose, and her husband's name is Joe.  Their last name is Flower, and they have six children:  Ally, Lisa, Rachel, Aiden, Chase and Sil-o-brit.  (She just told me they had two more!  Lily and Jack.)  They also have a few dogs:  Al-o-ZEET-uh-no-MY-nee, Niffy, Rose and Rosalina.  And a cat named Fuchsia.  She comes up with this stuff all on her own and sticks to it like glue.  She's been Rose married to Joe for so long now that it's just the norm.  I'm her sister, Jane.  My husband's name is Amberson, and our last name is Cece.  We have a bunch of kids too:  Apricot, Clementine, Arrington, Anakin and Olive.

In real life, Apricot wants to marry a boy from church.  His last name begins with 'Z'.  We'll see what happens with that.  :)  His family is very nice, and I am hopeful he will turn out to be a wonderful man.  Who knows if anything will ever come about with it though, because she refuses to talk to him!  I told her I didn't want to hear her talking ABOUT him, unless she was going to talk TO him.  We talk about him a lot.  And there is a store and brand with his same name, so she sees his name fairly often.

Even though she is five and two days, she is still my little Nomma Cakes.  She is so sweet and soft and tender.

When we were doing her Advent calendar, sometimes she would get a couple of small treats each day.  Like jelly beans or chocolate chips.  She would ALWAYS offer Oak or me the first one.  That kindness blew us away.

She still sleeps with her animals:  Piggy, Bunny, Seal, Hare, Sven and Cherry.  Although, recently she's not been wanting Cherry in the bed.
Not that long ago she discovered the baby monitor (yes, we still use one) and I heard her talking through it to Piggy.  Telling him to lay down and whatnot.  haha

We are discovering that artificial colors and caramel coloring make her a complete crazy pants.

One of my favorite things about Apricot is her easy forgiveness.  She always says she'll always forgive me, and I say good!  because I'll always need your forgiveness!

This past year we cut off 10" each of our hair and donated it.  It was much needed for both of us.  Thankfully Oak and I seemed to mourn the loss of her hair more than she did.  Her hair was so long that it was past her tush.  but it was her baby hairs, so it was a little stringy.  I didn't realize how stringy, though, until it wasn't stringy anymore!  Speaking of hair, hers is still a beautiful reddish color.  copper?  strawberry blonde?  red?  orange?  I'm not really sure, but I know I love it.  And I hope it never changes.  She wants to dye it.

She calls a rash "radish".  She says "commission" instead of permission.  She calls a thief "feef".  She says "mistaking" instead of mistaken.  She thinks because is "pecause".  I correct her on some things, but I refuse to correct her on any of these.

She has enlarged adenoids that she and her Daddy have painstakingly learned to flush with the "nose squeezy".  It was a process.  A long, drawn-out, everybody hates it, lots of tears process.  But they both put in lots of hard work and do her nose thing nightly to clear out her sinuses.  It's either this or surgery, and we don't want to do surgery.  Adenoids shrink as a child grows, so hopefully this will be her worst years with it.  They started being inflamed fall 2014 and stayed inflamed until spring or so.  They started again this past fall and haven't quit yet.  We have her 5-year-old check up tonight with the doctor.  We missed her 4-year-old one.  We are hoping for a good report, and that she doesn't have to get too many shots!  Oak told me that he wants to take her to Chick-Fil-A afterward.

Also in Fall 2014, we took her to the doc for this adenoid issue when we didn't know it was the adenoids, and she ended up getting RSV!  I have since sworn her against playing with any of the toys anywhere we go, poor kid.

Just the other day I noticed a sprinkling of a few very light freckles across her nose and cheeks.

She hates jeans.  HATES.

She is very dramatic and sometimes has an attitude.  We tell her she needs to ask God to change her heart.

She loves fruit.  Frozen cherries are her favorite.

She asks the most direct questions.  The put-you-on-the-spot kind.  The there's-nothing-to-say-but-the-truth-because-anything-else-would-be-a-lie kind.

We had such a fun time last night shopping for her jelly-bean-themed birthday party.  We bought a pinata.  This should be fun.  Or disastrous, either or.  She wanted spiders to go inside "so that when they fall out, Daddy would fall down".  Daddy hates spiders.

Apricot still lets me rock her a bit in my arms at night when I'm saying goodnight.  I tell her she is my favorite girl in all the land.

She sometimes says things I can't hear and I ask what?  And she says nothing for Momma's to know.  Then I tell her it's all for Momma's to know and then she tells me.

She is the joy in my day, the spring in my step.  She is unknowingly my accountability partner.  She is my delight, and she makes me want to be a better person.  I am so thankful God made me her Momma.  I point to Him all day long (or try to) (or better yet, pray the Holy Spirit does it for me and in me) so that she sees Him and his goodness and lives for HIM.  He is what matters most.

We have lots of talks about God and Jesus and Heaven and Hell.  And how it doesn't matter if you're a good person or not.  She knows there are people in Hell, and she knows Satan hates her.  She knows that the only way to get to Heaven is by having a right relationship with God through Jesus Christ.  She knows that Jesus' blood covers her sins and that she is seen as perfect in God's eyes BECAUSE of what Jesus did for her.

She has talked to more people about Jesus than I would have ever dreamed.  And they listen.  And I love it.

I just read this post to her and asked her if she had anything to add.  She said yes.  Here it is:
I am getting to love Jesus more.
It is so important that I love Jesus.
Jack is learning how to talk actually now.
Rachel lost her mind.  She fell down and scraped her head, and she thinks that is losing her mind.  When it was all bandaged up, she lost her mind and started laughing.
I like kitties and I want one.  And if we get one, we'll name him Pimento.

25 January 2014

Last Day of Two

Dear Apricot,
Today is the last day you will ever be two.  I cannot believe how fast the time has flown.
Today, on the last day of two, we are struggling with small things that feel like big things.
Today, on the last day of two, you are as feisty as ever, especially since the attention has not been on you lately.
Today, on the last day of two, I feel something like an inadequate mother.  We should be celebrating more.  I should not be getting frustrated as easily.  You should be better behaved.
Today, on the last day of two, half of the house is sick.  Still sick, I should say.  With Uncle RobinHood at five days, and Daddy at two days, it feels like the sickness will never ever leave us.  This is why the attention on you is lacking.  This is why my frustration point is so very small it is not fair to an adult, let alone someone who is on their last day of being two.
Today, on the last day of two, you are the smartest two-year-old I know - that I have ever known.
Today, on the last day of two, you can write your name clearly, and have been doing so for at least six months.
Today, on the last day of two, you can read small books by yourself with just a little guidance.
Today, on the last day of two, you are my shining star, with so much love and life and energy it brings tears to my eyes.
Today, on the last day of two, you are loud.  Oh so loud.  And excitable.  And fidgety.  And sweet.  Oh so sweet.
Today, on the last day of two, your smile is infectious.
Today, on the last day of two, you are completely potty trained, and have been so for at least six months.  Yes, even through the night.
Today, on the last day of two, you like the simple things.  You do not have many conventional toys, and that's okay with you.  I think even if you did, you would still choose to play with the odd things.  (The flippers from the tinker toys are your choice toys today.)
Today, on the last day of two, we were praying for a brother or sister for you.  We thought you'd have at least one by now and be working on another.  We love the time we get to spend with you, but we know you would absolutely thrive with a sibling.  Not to mention, it would be nice for you to have someone to play with other than Daddy and me.
Today, on the last day of two, your closest friends (other than Daddy and me) are Pancake, Potta-tee-too, Miss Mary and Monkey.
Today, on the last day of two, you sleep with three animals (also your friends):  Piggy aka Bacon, Seal aka Luce (Luce-seal) and Bunny, who is currently your favorite.  Bunny likes to come downstairs in the morning and play with us.
Today, on the last day of two, you still let me rock you at nap-time.  I love rocking you.  Lately I have been singing Hush, Little Baby; reciting The Going to Bed Book by Sandra Boyton; and singing Rock-a-Bye Baby.  You are the one that insists on Rock-a-Bye Baby.
Today, on the last day of two, you still suck your (left) thumb and twirl your hair.  You have been grabbing at your hair since before it was long enough to grab.
Today, on the last day of two, we must tuck you in very tight, "turn your angel on" and also turn on your fan.
Today, on the last day of two, I have tried to soak up as many moments as I possibly can, and yet, the time still seems to zip by me at lighting speed.  It is as if I am trying to grasp the wind.  I never knew how much one little life could fill my heart so much that I love practically everything about you.  Everything you do is wonderful, and cute, and hilarious.  You have so much spunk it's hard to describe.
Today, on the last day of two, you can be an intentional buster.  That's not so fun.  I'm not sure why you do it.  But you're probably just seeing what happens.  Exploring the world, I suppose.
Today, on the last day of two, you have your Momma's rebellion and your Daddy's mischievousness.  Oy vey.
Today, on the last day of two, it is snowing.  It is snowing just like it did on the last full day of my pregnancy.
Today, on the last day of two, I am sitting on the couch looking at balloons from a beloved Aunt, who cares so much.  We are thankful for these balloons because your party was supposed to be today, but it had to be postponed due to the sickness in the house.  We feel bad about that.  But luckily, you're two!  and you don't really realize these types of things yet.  You're napping right now, and I can't wait to see your face with you come downstairs and see your balloons.
Today, on the last day of two, I am praying for a good three-hour nap.  It's the norm still (thank you Jesus), but this week has been a little rough.  And, for whatever reason, the less sleep you get, the less you want to sleep!  Usually you get up at 8, nap from 12-3, and go to bed at 8.
Today, on the last day of two, I love watching you grow and explore and become the little you that you are.
Today, on the last day of two, you are my favorite girl in all the land.
Today, on the last day of two, I love you.
Love and kisses, Momma

03 October 2012

My cup overfloweth

My word has it been five months since my last post?  How's that for inconsistency.  So much has happened in those five months.  Let's take a walk through my memory.

I celebrated my 30th birthday in May.  It was very nice to have all my loved ones celebrate with me.  My mom threw me a party (not a surprise), and fun was had by all.  I am truly blessed.

My Poppop went home to be with the Lord in June.  He was the closest representation of Christ I have ever experienced in my life.  He was truly a man of God.  He would literally give you the shirt off your back.  In fact, that was his ministry.  He would wear Jesus shirts, and if you said you liked it, he would ask you if you would wear it.  If you said yes, he would take it off and give it to you.  We handed out shirts at his memorial service with a wonderful poem telling others to do the same.  I am so glad he is with my Grandmom again, both of them in Heaven yukking it up.  But boy, do I miss the heck out of him.  I didn't glean everything I should, or could, have from him, and for that I am regretful.  I can only take that regret and turn it into something good - really buckling down and digging into my Bible.  I cannot wait to see them again, and I am so thankful I know I will.  I am truly blessed.

After seven months of squatting with my in-laws, we settled on a house at the end of July.  This house is perfect for us.  The previous owners kind of took a bath when they sold it to us, but yay for us!  It was completely done - all the way down to paint - so all we had to do was move in.  We are thankful to Oak's family for taking us in, and we are thankful to have a house of our own again.  I am truly blessed.

We moved into the new house in the beginning of August!  Moving day was so awesome.  We had so many family members help us; we were like a well-oiled machine!  My sister-in-law was fantastic in the days after too, helping us get things out of boxes.  She unpacked the entire kitchen and front room, not to mention the other things I am forgetting.  I am truly blessed.

Let's see... With September came the onset of Apricot's two-year molars!  I believe September 20 was when we started seeing something poke through.  We were glad to discover those little buggers because it's kind of been a nap time-nightmare around here lately.  Not napping, sometimes napping, short napping, needing to be rocked to sleep to make the napping happen... not super fun times.  Also, Miss Apricot was moved from her crib into a big-girl bed!  I saw that she could get her leg (easily) over the top rung of the crib, and it was starting to worry me.  I know a few kids who have fallen out of the crib and broken their arms, so I was concerned for her safety.  Into the big-girl bed it was (which is just her crib mattress on the floor with a slide-under railing).  God gave us a few great days that were smooth.  She laid down and didn't budge when we put her in.  I can't say it's been like that since.  But we're figuring it out.  Other than that, though, Apricot is just a gem.  She is so smart; it's a little scary.  She can count to 20 (if you don't mind missing 13 and 15), recite the days of the week, tell you the sound of the first several letters of the alphabet, sing several songs, recite several nursery rhymes, and is pretty much daytime potty trained.  All of this, really, in the month of September.  She is a light that just shines and makes people smile.  I am truly blessed.

September was also a big month for my siblings!  I am the oldest, and from there we have RobinHood, AirForce, Blue and Twig.  RobinHood made a great life decision and decided to get treatment for a long-time addiction.  He's been through detox, rehab and is back home now.  He's doing daily meetings, and truly seems to have done a 180.  I love spending time with him, and I am so glad he's back!  AirForce, if you couldn't tell, is in the AirForce!  It was great life decision he made quite a few months ago that made us all proud.  He left for bootcamp early in September, and we have been writing letters since.  We are so thankful for his sacrifice!  He has such intelligence, we know he will do well.  Blue started college again.  I believe it is going well, albiet hard.  I don't talk to her much; that is something I have to work on!  And Twig got braces!  She lives with her mom, and I cannot wait to see her.  She is supposed to be coming to spend the weekend with us, and we are super excited.  I am so proud of all of them.  I am truly blessed.

And now it's October.  Wow.  Oak and I are chatting about several things - hoping to do them in the coming months:  visit my dad later this month; hand out glow sticks in lieu of candy for Halloween; go on a date (or two) after Apricot goes to bed; figure out our budget; complete some things on our To Do List; get our dining room table (that we just ordered the other day - we are so excited!) situated, along with extra dishes and silverware to complete the sets; go to VA in November for my grandparent's memorial in Arlington; Christmas decorations... Lots of things.  I am truly blessed.

So now you're all caught up.  Hopefully I won't have another five-month-long dry spell.  But don't hold your breath.  What can I say?  I've got a lot going on.  I am truly blessed.

14 May 2012

Scattered thoughts

Well, it's been nearly three months since my last post.  So much for my very consistant once per month thing I had going on...  Life is scattered.  Well, I guess not life in general, just my brain specifically.

We are house hunting like the dickens.  We are still squatting at Oak's parents, and we are ready to be on our own again.  They're great - his parents.  They really are.  It's not them.  It's just not my house.  It's not my house, it's not my kitchen, it's not my stuff, it's not my room, etcetera etcetera...  I am thankful they are putting us up, but I am very ready to have this be a place I just visit again.

My birthday is this month.  Right now it is still the truth to say I am in my 20s.  I don't care *really* about turning 30... I really don't.  But gosh it is hard to not remember when I thought 30 was ancient.  I don't feel ancient.  Actually, I don't feel old enough to have half the responsibility I have!

Apricot is a wonderful, beautiful, growing, smart SMART little girl.  I know every parent thinks their child is smart, but my goodness this child is smart.  Also, she is defiant.  Love her.

24 February 2012

Mouth full of teeth - and walking!

I am writing on reserved battery power.  That is kind of like "fumes and a prayer" for the computer, I suppose.

Just wanting to say how wonderful my little Apricot is.  She has three new teeth as of today, bringing the count up to a whopping 14!  No wonder our nights have been full of interrupted sleep.  What a trooper!

Apricot also officially started taking steps last month - the 17th of January, but Oak and I did not catch it until the 19th!  What terrible parents are we...  But she has been trucking along full-force for about 4 days now, since the 20th.  It's pretty amazing.  She did not want to have anything to do with walking, really.  Kind of scared of it actually.  Then one day she just started taking a few steps from here to there, and poof!  Now she's trying to run.

We are settling into a routine here...  still work sometimes, still kind of feels like we are on an extended sleepover, still not home but is at the same time, still weird...  But we are managing!  God IS GOOD.

14 January 2012

Perhaps if I repeat it enough it will rise from my heart to my brain

Well, it is January.  My little girl turns one this month.  I cannot believe how fast this year has gone.  I have tried to soak in all of the moments, to savor and cherish them, yet they still seemed to have zipped by me at lightening speed.  Time is funny like that.  It is like trying to catch the wind.  Apricot is growing and flourishing right before our eyes.  She has such a personality on her; it is amazing.  I am still amazed at the miracle that is her.

We moved into Oak's parent's house on January 1.  Let us just say we are still in transition.  Our house (which we now lovingly refer to as 'our shore house') is half packed and vacant of bodies.  We went there last weekend to pack some things, and it was creepy and depressing.  Creepy I guess because no one had been there for a week, and it was just Apricot and me at first - no Oak or Kitty.  Depressing for more than one reason.  I wanted equally to both never see that place again and never leave again.  We still have a lot to do.  If we methodically chip away at it, it really should not take us too long.  As long as we are consistently doing something productive.

On the bright side, we may have found renters!  Holla!  We met, and liked, them.  They have a 3-week-old boy and seem very nice.  They cannot move in until April 1, but that is okay because now we do not have to rush to get our stuff packed.  It stinks a little because we have to carry the mortgage for two months more than we had anticipated, but we think it is worth it.  We are really hoping they work out to be great renters.  Only time will tell.

God is in control of all these things in our lives.  GOD IS IN CONTROL OF ALL THINGS.  God loves us.  I will keep telling myself this.  Romans 12:12, Ephesians 5:20 and also Romans 8:28

13 December 2011

December overwhelmed gratitude

Well Oak said it the best.  December = overwhelmed.  Just thinking about the month of December makes me completely overwhelmed.  In our immediate family we have five birthdays.  In our extended family we have seven birthdays.  Then of course there is Christmas, which is the 'reason for the season' as everyone likes to put it.  I want so badly not to make Christmas about gift giving and stress, but to make it about Christ's birth and family traditions (that we enjoy).

We are trying to get our own traditions set:  cookies, tree, decorating... stuff like that.  But even the cookies seem to be overwhelming.  Our decorations are not out yet.  Hopefully tonight we will put them up.  I have them all set out on the table waiting to be put in their spots.

In addition to the normal yearly stress, we have our own added moving stress.  We are not moving until after Christmas, but that does not mean we aren't looking for houses!  So when we are not shopping for presents or going to parties, we are house hunting.  And can I just tell you I do not see the 'falling market' that everyone is talking about.  Perhaps it is because we are not looking for a run-of-the-mill house.  We want some land on which to run and grow.  Fruit trees and bushes, a garden, possibly a greenhouse later! is what are hopes are for.  Chickens and goats...  okay, that might be a little far-fetched, but maybe not completely!  We have friends 20 minutes from us that have both chickens and goats.  The idea of growing our own food and not having to rely on the supermarket is so very appealing to us (me), but that is for another post entirely.

So... December.  Lord please let us focus on YOU Lord.  Not on the money, or even the house-to-be.  Lord let us appreciate what You have given us.  Our families, friends and all of our loved ones.  Also at the same time, though, Lord, we do not want our loved ones to be disappointed on Christmas, so please help us to find the right gifts for them.  They do not have to be expensive, nor extravagant, but just the right gift that would make someone smile.  Thank You Jesus for all that You do for us.  I cannot imagine a life without You Lord.  I am so thankful for You each day.  And each day You pour so many blessings on me that I am just struck with this incredible awe.  I cannot fathom why You are even bothering with little me, Lord.  You created the universe for crying out loud.  The universe!  Yet You care so much about me that You know the number of hairs on my head.  Thank you.  I am so very VERY grateful.