Friday, February 28, 2014

New Horizon.

Since we packed up and left South Carolina last July, I feel like we've been in a bit of a wilderness time of life. Not that we haven't been abundantly blessed (hello Annalee) but it has been a hard season. Not near as hard as losing Maelee, but we have learned circumstances in life can surely affect how life feels day-to-day. Of course we are alive and healthy with a host of good things. Yet at the same time, I'm pretty sure I've consumed more chocolate in this last year than my whole life combined (it is cheaper than an anti-depressant I suppose!).

Gratefully, however, I feel like we about to walk away from this type of wilderness and move on to some different scenery for awhile. Reasons?

  1. I was offered (and accepted) that part-time job I applied for awhile back! I'm very excited! The job seems to be a great fit. I'll post more on that once I'm into it. One perk is I don't have to start until we find childcare for Eli and Annalee. Such a blessing to have time for this! It's going to be hard to find quality care and part-time (it looks like I'll work two days a week one week, then three days the next week - to equal 40 hours every two weeks). Please pray and let us know if you have any connections/leads for us! I'm hoping to start March 31 but can start later if need be... the job is flexible. What a gift! My boss is actually the mom of one of the students I advised back in my UND days. And she's a big proponent of a positive workplace atmosphere. How lovely!
  2. Our SC house is still slated to close on the 14th of March. Oh that it would all go smoothly!
  3. We are now getting to the point we can buy a home here! And in 30 minutes, we are going for the first time to look at houses! Prices here are insane (groan) but we are hopeful. Greg's parents have been more than gracious but we are all ready! Oh I am so excited to organize and have our own space again. Plus I think I only have like three pairs of shoes not in storage. And maybe two pairs of non-jeans. Going to be hard to be professional Heather without my pants! Here's to hoping we find a place that works for us and that I'm not sucked into thinking perfect house = perfect life.
  4. Pumping is going to be ending in the next month or so. Yay! Our plan was to start transitioning A so I'm not pumping when we go to SC April 15 (that trip is still on even with the job - booyah!). The last two days I pumped one time less and that extra time was so wonderful! Hoping Annalee transitions well to formula and to me not feeling guilty about it.
  5. Weather. It's SO very, very cold right now. But in one month or two, it will be nice. It will be nice. It will be nice. 
  6. Annalee has been waking up three times a night and Eli once. Uffda. But that can't last. She will get better at this schedule thing as we ourselves get more scheduled with wake-up times (to get to work). Well, I'm hoping at least.
  7. We are decently settled on a church and will be getting more involved as we make that commitment. 
  8. We have a few quick trips and big trips planned! Life just always seems brighter when you have an event to look forward to!
That's just a bit of what we have going on right now. Thanks for sticking with us through this tough spot. I can't wait to share life as we knock off a few more big steps in the next months.


Wednesday, February 26, 2014

KAT spells Work.

Two great Eli quotes from today to be shared:

1. "Daddy, you can't go to work. The road is broken." He repeated this often this morning while he was whining to Greg about leaving for work. We thought it was a pretty smart lie to get him to stay. It didn't work though.

2. Greg came home for lunch wearing his new hoodie that has his work's logo on it. Eli sees him and says "That says work." Hilarious.

Love this kid! And his Dad. 


Sunday, February 23, 2014

Ginger Snap!

Our friend Deanna enlightened us with a new term for Eli to say as he's freaking out in typical two-year-old fashion: Ginger Snap. You know 'cause he's a red head. Ha. Sort of.

Uncle Chris and Lilli were in town this weekend. Meaning joyous, wild jubilee was had. But they left today. Big letdown. And Eli basically had chocolate milk, fries, and ice cream for supper. Mom fail. Plus he woke up from nap early. The kid was not at his finest this evening. 

Thankfully tomorrow is a new day. And sleep makes everything better. 

Here's the two cousins last night. While the rest of the fam went to the basketball game, we enjoyed a little movie popcorn night. Thankfully with minimal snap moments.
Cousins and Popcorn


Thursday, February 20, 2014

ND Beats NYC.

North Dakota is a crazy place right now. My hometown has higher rent than New York City.

Don't believe me?
Or check out the map on this link.

That's pure craziness. If only I would have bought some dumpy old houses when I was in high school with my earnings as a delivery girl for B & B Super Drug. Though I'm pretty sure real estate was the farthest thing from my mind in high school.

Even in Bismarck, where our little family is hoping to find a home, it's a hopping market. Houses are on the market for such a short time, some good ones just for hours. Here's a good example of the current market: Tonight I was checking out a basic four bedroom house that sold for $169,900 in 2007. It's being sold for $287,900 today, not seven years later. I've seen loads of homes selling for around 100K more than they sold for just a few years ago. Of course I do think "if only"  we would have bought a house here in 2007 instead of in Columbia... we could be in a much better place financially. But with a much less cultured worldview. I mean, we wouldn't have any idea what collared greens are!


Monday, February 17, 2014

PT Help.

Our sweet little boy is a few months shy of his third birthday. And three is the magical year when little boys should be potty trained or at least trying to get there. And this mama is full with other things in life right now that makes me not want to spend time reading about potty training. I know there are lots of methods and theories and steps and practices and opinions on the matter and I just can't add another thing to "Heather's list of things she's overwhelmed by" right now. So I come to you, dear reader, and ask for your help. If you have potty trained a boy successfully, I am all ears. Tell me what method, etc worked for you, how you went about it and any other info you'd like to pass on. This way it'll be like me doing the research and reading but with less of my time weeding out the bad info.

To let you know, Eli is not interested in potty training. The kid will sit in his poop for hours... we rarely let him but he is just not bothered by crap (literally) in his diaper. He has some idea of what's going on in there, he will sometimes tell us he has pooped but other times the only thing that alerts us is the stench. He sometimes feigns interest in the potty chair. He sometimes thinks undies are awesome (we got Thomas the Train, Lightening McQueen, and other such awesome dude undies to entice him) but not enough to want to wear them over diapers. It's still just not on his radar. With allllll the transition and change in his life the last seven months, I have used that as our excuse not to get down to business (ha) with potty training. But now that some settling is on the horizon, I feel we need to get this rolling for our boy. Plus he is signed up for preschool next fall two mornings a week and though it's not stated anywhere, I'm pretty sure he's supposed to be potty trained!

You most likely know how to contact me so bring on your input!

-"Would Be Nice To Just Have One Kid In Diapers" Mom

Friday, February 14, 2014

Socks or ?

I made Eli wear red socks today. I said they were Valentines socks. He then repeated me over and over but it just sounded like "Valentines Sucks." So any people hating this holiday, Eli's right there with ya.

In other related news, I have at least five outfits Annalee could wear today. Lots of hearts happening around here. Eli soaked his red sweater when he "helped" clean up after Annalee's bath. There goes my idea for a cute sibling picture. Actually I got a few good pictures even without the sweater. Plus later he smeared his chocolate pudding all over so it was a win he wasn't wearing his nice sweater.

Daddy came home and his mini Valentine was excited to see him. We are making good food and watching Eli's new movie from Grammy. Not winning any romance awards but having kids is worth it.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Contract and Such.

We have our South Carolina house under contract to close mid-March!

Enter applause and general gratitude!

It's a little underwhelming, perhaps, because we are going to be paying money to sell it... so that's a downer. But overall we are glad to be able to close that chapter and be able to move forward. Actually we are sad to close that chapter but you know what I mean.

We hope everything with the buyer and their lender works out so that we really do close mid-March. Their realtor is perhaps not quite on top of things. But the buyer's lending company is legit and I guess that's more important. So we hope for all that to get tied up nicely. With a bow.

And here's to hoping we'll be able to find a home here that could be our home for years to come. Many details are unknown on that, loan-wise and whatnot, but we are hopefully going to get that ball rolling soon. The market here is less than ideal for buyers.

In other news, I am thinking about finding a part-time job (in my ideal situation, I'd work part-time and stay home part-time). Finding good part-time daycare and finding a job worth it for me is admittedly quite a long stretch. Greg looked one day and found a job he thought sounded fitting for me. I applied for it and actually got an interview last week. I think it could be a super great fit but I understand they may not think so and that's okay. It was a gift to just do an interview and let professional Heather out a bit. Again, it's really a long shot to find a part-time job I really want to do, get offered it, have it pay well enough and find great part-time daycare for our two littles. We shall see.

Monday, February 10, 2014

Four Month Cutie. Take Two.

Thank God for a little tape and tiny scissors. I was able to get my memory card working enough to get these photos off it. I ordered a new one, however, as I don't want to live life without a working memory card. There's probably a life lesson there... 

Here's our sweetie!
Toes still a "V"
Tongue still sticks out.

"Get out of my shot, big bro!"

More Four Month Annalee Updates For Those That Need Details:

She likes her milk. Loves it. She always wants it five minutes ago. She knows a bottle when she sees one and sometimes she even tries (and succeeds) at holding it to her mouth herself! 

She still spits up milk often. I call her "fountain" sometimes. Her meds help but we are all looking forward to when her little sphincter or whatever matures and we won't have such massive amounts all over. Imagine all her laundry and then ours because she spits up on our clothes If Greg ever feeds her before he goes to work, he wears a blanket over himself.

Because she's noisy, we don't let her sleep in her own crib in our room. We are mean. Instead she sleeps in the pack-n-play in the storage room. I feel pretty bad about this. Greg assures me there will be no lasting damage and that there a millions of kids sleeping in much, much worse. (sadly). Still I wish for her own special space. Actually I wish for that for all of us!

She is not sleeping very awesome. She went back to waking up twice to eat. And last night, since she has a little congestion, she was up frequently. But 

She does not roll over but I think she's really starting to try!

She likes the play mat, same one Eli used. And her favorite is the elephant because she can somewhat grab the rings on it. Makes her seem like a big girl when she's playing with a toy!

If I had to guess, her first word will be something that means "Eli". She loves to follow all his action with her eyes. Of course she loves me and Greg, too.

She's still in her bigger three-month clothes but is slowly getting ready for six-month. I am looking forward to opening that bin!

Her eyes really do light up when she smiles! 

And her hair... well it's still red awesome and cause for random stranger comments! She's got a little bald patch on the back from laying down too much. And the top hairs are all wild and crazy... some are inches longer than others! I am pretty sure she could master "the comb over" right now, too. Nothing a bow or headband can't fix! Also the ears are definitely sticky-outy!

She can giggle now! And coo. Right now she wants my attention and she's sort of talking to me. I look at her, she coos. It's cute. I better go!

-A's Mom

Friday, February 7, 2014

Four Months.

Annalee is not insanely short! At least for this time in her life she's solid at 25 inches and in the 78th percentile! And in the 75th for weight at 14lbs, 12.5ozs and her head in the 61st at 16.25inches. So pretty well rounded measurements for our little DQ.

I took her four month photos but after I took my SD card out of my camera, a tiny piece chipped off and now it won't work! I'm a little upset but I'll try superglue it today and see if I can get it to work. If not I'll have to buy a new SD card (all backups are in our storage) and then take her 4 month shots again. Uffda. 

Until then this pic of her at the appointment Wednesday will have to do!

- Heather

Wednesday, February 5, 2014


Just recording this sweet moment since years down the road it may not happen much!
Little Loves.

Sunday, February 2, 2014


Our talkative boy says some pretty hilarious things each day. I take it for granted that he talks as much as he does. I remember when he was a baby and didn't say a darn thing and I was just looking forward to the day when he could tell me how he was feeling or what he was thinking. Now we can have conversations!

It should be noted, however, that he is now into making up words and talking goobily-gook. No pointing fingers but I'm saying this is his Daddy's influence. They read Mercer Mayer books often (they have been a consistent favorite) and one in particular has Little Critter's friend with no name. Well Eli named him Stucko. If you ask him to name a toy, he'll giggle and say "Tunka" or something silly like that. He thinks he's hilarious. And he is.

I love to hear him playing with his toys and narrating by himself. He just started doing this more frequently. Actually ever since Grandma brought out the bin of random men and cars and "played men" with him by giving them voices and making up stories. She also scared the crap out of him when she was "the bad guy" as he'd never encountered that before, but it was good for him... you can tell she knows all about interacting with little boys!

Other things Eli says these days:

1. At least a few times a day: "I want some something else." He doesn't quite get the "some" doesn't need to be said with something.

2. He still doesn't quite have his pronoun usage down: "Mama play stickers with you" or "Mama play trains with you" or "Daddy hold you". He's slowly starting to understand the "I'm me" and "you are you"... today he said "my pee" when I asked who's pee was on the bed.

3. "I want to sit on Annawee." giggle giggle

4. "I need some noise." When he wants me to turn the sound on my phone.

5. Back in October my parents taught him a long name in this fable story (I learned it when I was little). I couldn't believe it but he knows the whole thing and repeats it often. "Tikitikitimboinosorimboharrybarrybooskieskimopompombeanbinethebeanbinebollie" Yep, he knows that.

6. "What a beautiful day!" is still said often. #greatperspective

7. I started reading Jesus Loves Me but changing the me to Eli. He was quite taken back and declared "that's not how it goes!!"

8. After we got home from Eli being away from me for two hours, he said to me as we sat together on the couch: "mama, best friend". Then kissed and hugged me. It was the sweetest cutest moment. The kid needs to get out more, obviously. But I took a photo to cherish this time in life when I'm his biggest fan:

Happy Mom.

I've tried posting videos so you can hear him but it's just not working. So this photo montage will have to do!

Great Kid.