#FoldsOfHonor Memorial Day Weekend

Tonight was the welcome dinner for the Patriot Cup. The past couple of years we have attended this tournament in Tulsa, OK in support of the Folds Of Honor foundation, which supports wounded or killed in action veteran’s families through scholarships. After the dinner, they held a US flag retirement ceremony, which was the first I had ever seen. It was a beautiful ceremony to set the tone of the weekend, which is to remember those who are no longer with us.

I think it is beautiful to remember and compare those who are gone right next to experiencing the innocence of young life. Today, Sky got to swim in a pool for the very first time. Although he is too young to remember it, his being here is a true testament that young and old, despite the conflict, the US supports it’s troops!

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Baby Bloopers – 11 Month Old Pictures

Today we took Sky’s 11 month old pictures. I decided before he was born that we were going to take monthly pictures in the same position preferably with the same outfit next to an object that would show his growth and development.  We decided on a bumGenius Albert cloth diaper, a chalkboard, and sitting in the rocking chair in his room.  So far we have been lucky enough to get great pictures of him smiling at the camera, even if we had to take 50 pictures to get it.  I would normally only post the “best” picture on Facebook, which a friend of mine (ahem… Tara) pointed out was crazy that I could ALWAYS get a picture of him. In this post, I just want to share how absolutely lucky we got with each photo session as well as some of the pictures NEVER before seen from one of his monthly photo shoots.

We normally had to make sure he was well fed, not tired, a new diaper, and overall in a good mood to make sure we got the “right” picture.  One time he was sick so we put it off a day.  One day he bonked his head on the side of the bed frame and had a little bruise, so we waited until that healed. During the winter months I didn’t want to take the pictures at night so we’d have to wait until the weekends to get “just the right lighting.”  Sometimes I feel like we did everything just to try and pretend that everything is “perfect”, as if he just sits around posing for us all the time.  Let me just say.. NOT TRUE! And neither would I want that 🙂  In reality there was a lot that went into getting that one little snapshot.  Tonight, I thought I would share the baby bloopers from today’s photo session with Sky!!! Enjoy

11 Months Old: Sky now has 4 teeth on the bottom and on the top.  He pulls himself up on everything and crawls everywhere he can get into. He knows how to go up the stairs but not down. He loves playing with water which means if you leave the dog water bowl out or the toilet seat up, somehow he will go straight for it as soon as you turn you back. He loves opening and closing doors, drawers, closets, pantries, you name it.  He also loves cars and trucks and running them along the ground.  He’s super ticklish on his neck and his tummy. He’s also ticklish if you squeeze his legs.  He eats pretty much anything for the first time, but is starting to get picky about textures. He stands by himself and likes to lunge at you, knowing you will catch him.  He thinks that’s one of the best games ever.  He thinks it’s funny when Roxy is on the wrong side of the baby gates.  I’m pretty sure he laughs at her. He likes Roxy’s toys, and Roxy likes his. They will be best friends. One day!

I Hate the Phrase “I’m too busy!”…

1 February 2014

“…But sometimes I find myself wanting to say that very thing!

In this season of life, I am a wife, mother, and full time Air Force officer. I am a nursing, cloth diapering, bible-study going mom. I am a dish washing, house-cleaning, movie watching wife. I am working on my Masters of Business Administration with 3 classes this semester. I am training for a bike race, running when I can, and focusing on eating healthy. I am BUSY. There’s no other way to put it.

BUT do you Ever have those friends who always seem frazzled and overwhelmed? When you ask them how they’ve been, their only response is “busy?” And then they go on to describe a litany of activities you feel like they are perhaps too busy for you? Sometimes I do.

In the past, I felt like the person I just described, as in, the one who was “too busy.” I have always had school, sports, Girl Scouts, etc. There was always more to do or more people to see. Involvement in lots of different activities and meeting with different people can be productive and help invest in the future but there is something to say for “too much”.

This year I am focusing on being “intentional.” Intentional with my time. My friends. My money. My priorities.

If I ever come off as “too busy” for my family or friends I pray that someone will say something and remind me of my priorities. I pray that I can remain focused and to enjoy the little moments. I pray for intentionality and focus on the truly important in life. I pray for peace and grace through this time of season.”

I actually started this post on at the beginning of February. The fact that I am just posting it now is proof that it has been one “busy” semester. The semester ended beautifully with good grades, a finished project at work, and my husband winning his first golf tournament.  It doesn’t always finish this way, but looking back now at this post with 20/20 vision certainly gives me a different perspective.  I can now see much clearer what I was working towards.  I can see that the hardwork was worth it. I can see that the trust we had in Him is truly beautiful and that He will provide and give us our needs in His time.  He will not give us what we cannot handle.  He will use the difficult times to mend us and to bend us and to shape us and to teach us.  I love how much I grew this past semester and can’t wait for much more growth to come.

Thank you to those who have supported me over the past crazy semester and who will support me and love me in the future! Especially my  husband who is an amazing supporter!

God is SO Good.

I have been having trouble thinking about “what” to blog about because it has seemed like such a long time since I wrote about anything at all.  There have been so many changes in our life that it is hard to update everything in one post.  A new house. A new job for Tom. A new job for me. Sky is almost one. A promotion. A golf tournament win.  Birthdays. Anniversaries. All of it. I feel like the most important thing to say is, “God is so faithful and SO good.”

Recently as many of you know, my husband, separated from the Air Force.  This is what we call it when someone is no longer in the military but they did not work 20 years, and therefore, did not “retire” from the Air Force.  He separated with the hopes and dreams and prayers of pursuing and becoming a professional golfer.  Recently, one of our new neighbors said to my husband, “Oh, you mean you actually golf for a living? I guess I will start telling ‘everyone’ that you are actually a professional golfer.”  We aren’t exactly sure who ‘everyone’ is but we do get the gist that there are those out there who might think we are a little be crazy for leaving a stable, steady, well-paying job to pursue something with so much “seeming” risk.

What most people do not understand though is that every decision we make from where and when to buy a house to what job we apply for or take, is not our risk.  It is not our decision.  It is not necessarily our desire or want.  Rather, we trust and know that what is God’s will and God’s desire will occur.  It is most certainly our desire that Tom is successful in his career and that we will lead comfortable lives, in which we may give generously to others.  However, as much as we desire happiness and health and lots of happy healthy kids, we desire EVEN more, that God’s will be made known to us and that we are lead to our callings to best serve and love Him all for His glory.

I think tonight I am quite reflective as I sit at a new, white Ikea desk in our relaxing blue office.  I sit here and think.  I reflect on the trust we have given to God.  I reflect on the community He has surrounded and provided for us in this stage in life.  I reflect on how Amazing He is and how He turns everything in the ways of His will.  I reflect on how the more we trust in Him, the more it seems we live in freedom and joy in His love. God is SO good.  He IS the truth and the Life. He IS the one guding us on our path.  He is our provider and our father and our comforter and our light in this world. And He is all we need in this world.

Why I love my growing 10-month old!

DSC_6113Have you ever found yourself so in love that your every waking thought and action revolves around one person (or perhaps several little people)? Well, if you are a mom or a dad then I’m SURE you know this feeling.  But do you every wonder why you love such a little thing (besides the obvious reason that babies are so cute)? I mean, come on, your sleep is scheduled around the little ones (or lack there of). Your eating is scheduled around the little ones (leftover mashed banana anyone).  Your movie watching, “relaxing”, and even bathroom going are scheduled around the little ones. Yet, it is ALL worth it.

Sky turned 10 months on the 15th… one week ago. I can’t BELIEVE how fast he is growing and learning.  I love seeing the world through his eyes.  Every corner of the room is interesting.  Every dust mite underneath the bookshelf. Every crumb on the counter. Even though he challenges me to be more patient, more loving, less frustrated, a better house keeper, better at time management, better at giving of myself, better at loving my husband, better at appreciating my alone time with the Lord – my heart is still filled with immense love and heart filled joy at the thought that God chose me to be his mommy. The challenge of each and every day of the diaper laundry and clothes folding and bottle rinsing and constant breastmilk pumping…all of it is to love my baby boy, and it is ALL so worth it.

Around 9 months he really started getting around.  No more pulling himself along the ground for Sky. He has been crawling everywhere and pulling himself up on everything.  Cruising along the couches and trying to stand by himself.  He pulls himself up on my legs and laughs hysterically when I pick him up in my arms.  He thinks it’s funny when I say the word “boo,” and the most interesting toy can be as simple as little bowls.  He loves to cuddle with mommy and his smile lights up my heart even on those days that are trying. Whenever music plays his bounces on his little cloth diapered butt and claps his hands in his own little rhythm.  He loves throwing the ball with his daddy or anything that he can reasonably hold in his hand.  Recently he tries to stand in the tub and has figured out how to splash the surface of the water so mommy almost gets wet too.  He swims around the tub like it is his own personal pool in the backyard.

To him, life is so simple. Eat, play, sleep. Eat, play, sleep. Love mommy. Love daddy. Sleep some more. And through all that he learns and observes and truly sees God’s beautiful creations.

I love my growing 10-month old because he encourages me to open my eyes to the wonders around us and to better appreciate the blessings in our every day lives.  He encourages me to be INTENTIONAL with my time and my thoughts and my actions.  It is the little moments that matter and the little moments that make a difference. I appreciate that he shows me these each and every day, and this is one of the many reasons why I love him.

(Again, besides the obvious that he is just so cute.)

A Trip to the Park

Today I took a day of leave from work to catch up on homework for my masters, clean the house, and overall get ready for the movers to arrive this Saturday to take us to the new house.  I have been feeling slightly overwhelmed with everything so figured I could use a break!

The day didn’t start off the best so to speak. I registered my car this morning with relatively no mishaps.  I did forget to bring a copy of my PCS orders to get the military discount, and I kinda got frustrated because I had already waited an hour for my number to be called, but Tom reminded me to look at in perspective to the grand scheme of things.  Also, thankfully a friend of mine was also at the DMV, and she held Sky for me for a few minutes while I figured out what paperwork I needed to finish my registration.

At first when the DMV lady reminded me I needed my LES and orders, I wanted to hang on to my anger, but knew that that wasn’t the right thing to do. Instead, I got a second ticket number, drove home as quickly as the speed limit allowed and got a copy of my orders.  When I arrived back at the DMV they had already called my second number but they graciously gave me a new number because I had “missed” mine, and I was called within 1 minute of returning to the DMV.  I think she felt bad for me because I was carrying Sky around everywhere with me. I’ll take a little sympathy! But anyway, what could have been a day filled with annoyance and anger at the DMV turned out to be a pleasant experience because I chose to let go of it! And thanks to the hubby for encouraging me to give it all to God.

After the DMV, I got my oil changed in a jiffy from Jiffy Lube.  And my experience by the way was the fastest I’ve ever had there.  I pulled right in with no wait and was gone in 15 minutes. Maybe I should take care of car stuff on Mondays more often?

I headed over to the new house, said hi to our friend Erik who was giving advice to the hubby on sponsors for golf, and I enjoyed lunch with the hubby on the floor upstairs (since we don’t have any furniture yet).

The best part of today though was our impromptu trip to the park.  As a family we definitely have our share of “busy.”  We closed on the house last week…woohoo! We have been painting, researching, and dreaming of our new house for months!  I have my master’s degree to work on and a full time job. The hubby is trying to get his golfing career off the ground and to prep for his first tournament in May.  We still need to pack up the electronics in the house, organize the office before the movers come, and take some stuff to good will.  We still need to finish landscaping the backyard on the new house, build the pedestal for the laundry machines, and my hubby wants to build the frame for the new guest bed.  But despite all of THAT, we took an impromptu trip to the park.

The weather was BEAUTIFUL today.  Gorgeous and sunny. Blue skies. Light breeze. Perfect for a walk to the park. Perfect for Sky’s first trip to the park!

Here are a few of my favorite things from the park:

We played on the swings for a little bit, slid down the slide, and rode the little sea-horsey.  Roxy came along too.  I love taking walks with my husband because I feel like we can just relax and have a decent conversation.  We can catch up from the days events and get back on the same page.

I hope that when you find a day that you are frustrated because you have to go to the DMV and you are super busy, still make time for the park.  Still make time for your family and just focusing on them because it can make a world of difference and change your perspective on the day. Thanks God for walks. Thanks God for parks!

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9-Month Olds And Sleep Regression

Wow, so it has been BUSY. I think the “busy” I could traditionally handle “on my own” because I could control my own schedule before Life With Sky. I didn’t have to worry about a little one waking up in the middle of the night or how long it would take him to fall asleep! I didn’t have to worry about feeding anyone other than myself and hubby (who more often than not feeds me).

Lately it’s seemed like one thing after another for Sky. First, he was getting 3-teeth at one time. Then he got a bad sinus cold and a cold “in his eyes” as my mom would say. When we took him to the pediatrician to make sure it wasn’t pink eye, he actually had an ear infection! We gave him the medicine prescribed and then he developed a rash (not hives) all over his body. We took him in for the rash and then his ear infection was worse. Say what??? So the doctor prescribed stronger medication, and we had to worry about the rash potentially getting worse, as well as potential diarrhea from the medicine. Gross! Thankfully the rash went away, and I guess we’ll have to figure out what caused it later. For the diarrhea the pediatrician recommended yogurt or baby probiotics. This actually worked really well, and we didn’t have many issues!

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Anyway, with all of that he abruptly stopped going to bed at 7 out of nowhere, and he cried and fought naps like it was the worst thing in the world that we would think about asking him to sleep. He also refused to take a bottle from anyone including Tom and only wanted to nurse! For those of you that don’t realize the impact of this, I work full time and he’s at day care most of the day. I became legitimately worried the day he stayed home with his daddy and only nursed at 6am, had one baby yogurt, and then refused to eat until I got home that afternoon around 5pm! I know everyone says he will eat if he’s hungry, but it didn’t stop me from worrying at least a little bit!!! Okay, quite a bit 🙂

That being said, we assumed the sleep and nursing issues were because of the ear infection, and he would just get over them once he was better. So we waited.

A couple of days passed, the rash went away and he started taking bottles again (thank goodness!). It didn’t appear his ears were still bothering him, and we were almost done with the medication. So why wasn’t he sleeping well yet???

What did we do wrong?? Did we cuddle too much during the ear infection? Is he still in pain somewhere else?

Well, whenever I wonder if it is something else altogether I go to The Google and type his age and the symptoms. Yup, this is Mom 101 medical research… The Google.

And, as usual Mom 101 Research found the Baby Sleep Site with an article on 8, 9, 10 Month Old Sleep Regression Explained!

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I knew it! I knew we couldn’t be the only ones. Sometimes it’s just so comforting knowing there’s likely nothing you can do to help your baby except continue your routines, love him, and remember that “this too shall pass!”

I loved the above article because it totally makes sense! It basically says babies at this point reach a lot of developmental milestones and have “too much on their minds” to sleep. They just want to practice their new skills like standing and cruising and talking, which by the way it seems Sky has started demonstrating all at the same time! He is currently 9.5 months old, so he is right in the middle of this “sleep regression.” According to the article, this sleep regression might last 3-6 weeks.

To combat the sleep regression and prevent negative long term sleep habits from forming as much as possible we have been very intentional about our routines. We have been giving a few extra cuddles, and making sure he was nice and calm before he went in the crib. We had one bad night of letting him cry it out for 40-minutes but the next night he was asleep in 4 minutes flat!

For a couple of nights, when Sky woke up in the middle of the night we would have to bring him to bed to get him back to sleep. But after reading this article, I decided to try nursing him and then putting him right back to bed since we don’t really want a family bed, and I think it actually worked!

Well, this turned into a pretty lengthy article since it’s been a while 🙂 I’ll leave you with this adorable picture of Sky!

If you have stories about sleep. regression, I’d love to hear them!

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