Tuesday, September 15, 2009

ten smile tuesday

how can it be another tuesday already...seriously, wasn't it just last tuesday yesterday! time is flying by FAR too quickly...jillian is already three weeks old...how can that be!? i suppose that is all the more reason to keep recording each of these "smiles"...how i love to look back through past weeks and be reminded of God's graciousness and kindness to our little family. we are most definitely blessed beyond measure. and i must note that i realize the vast, vast majority of the pictures in recent blogs have been jillian...and i promise to do a better job of capturing some of kate and elizabeth in the coming weeks...i think perhaps i have been a bit off balance because i was a bit paranoid that i would forget to take many pictures of jillian, and she would grow up the "neglected" one who would ask, "mommy...where are my baby pictures!?" and besides...the others don't sit still long enough for pictures these days, so she is an "easy" target!

1. meals...fabulous meals! seriously, we have been beyond blessed by the generosity of friends. i haven't had to cook a thing since jillian was born...and not only have meals been provided, but they have been downright delicious. we sure have some friends with fabulous culinary skills! this has been an especially HUGE blessing with mike's long hours and overtime...and no matter how well the morning goes, i am definitely running on empty (as are the girls!) by the time it gets around to 4:30 or so!

2. milestone #1...jillian rolled from her front to her back not once but twice last wednesday. i'm telling you, this girl is STRONG. she doesn't do it every time we lay her on her tummy, but she has done it enough to convince me it wasn't a fluke. i have a feeling this girl is definitely going to be a tummy-sleeper in the near future though...she simply LOVES being on her belly. and do you see that precious elephant in the pictures...it was a gift from this beautiful and talented friend...the stuffed elephant is actually cut in half with a super snuggly soft blankie in between his head section and his rear. too cute! i am humbled by the sweet gifts so many of you sweet bloggity friends have sent our way...i promise to eventually get around to writing thank you's...someday, i promise!

3. a date night with my husband (and jillian!). it wasn't a grand affair...just dinner at "noodles and company", strolling through lowes and target, and then, just maybe some ice cream at costco (what can i say, i'm a cheap date!)...but it was so wonderful to simply have some time together to chat and catch up in the midst of the hecticness of recent life events. and, oh my, can i mention how much more comfortable walking around and browsing is these days...no more swollen ankles, no more getting "winded" by a walk from the parking lot to the door, no more aching back...nope, just a gorgeous little, sleeping baby girl to gaze at while we browse!

4. naps! and even better that the girls are all cooperating and letting their rest/nap time overlap for at least an hour most days...giving me the chance to nap or have a bit of "me" time (or unloading the dishwasher time...depending on the priority or energy level of the day!). even better was the nice 5 1/2 hour stretch jillian slept for last night...she is a great sleeper so far, and oh how i pray that continues!

5. the signs of fall are in the air...cooler, crisp morning air, signs for apple orchards, setting the date for our annual "apple day" (bring on the applesauce!), cooler evening air for backyard fun. i can't wait to break out the boxes of autumn clothing for the girls...oh how i love going through the outfits elizabeth once wore, that will be passed on to kate...and now looking through boxes for jillian...and, of course, peeking at all the "clearance bargains" i purchased for libs at the end of the season last year. have i mentioned that i simply love dressing my girlies...much more fun that dressing myself! :)

6. sisters...yes, elizabeth is wearing her PJs...after church mike changed both libbers and katers out of their dresses and into their jammies for rest time...and to be perfectly honest, that is how they stayed the rest of the day. it makes me smile to think of kate in her footie PJs, with her tennis shoes popped over the footie part, running around the backyard, curly hair all crazified and in her face (because really, friends, my girls' hair has a mind of its own!)...oh the precious moments. but back to the first part...sisters...i simply love these photos of elizabeth and jillian!

family will appreciate that in the pic below she is already trying to teach jillian the names of her toes...libbers would make big bapa proud! "little petey, patty lou, odie missel, penny noble, and BIG TOM GOBBLE!"

7. i'll admit it...since you all already know it. i am a garage sale junkie...i can't resist a good bargain...like this sweet little outfit for a quarter! i mean, really, it isn't as it we particularly need more clothes with our third girl, but for a quarter i simply couldn't resist! and really, its just fun to have some new little things her and there. but also, just look at her...look at how much she is growing. refer to this post for more on own growing baby!

8. mike's job. i must admit, i have had to remind myself of how thankful i am for his job lately. it is easy to get frustrated with the long hours of overtime...the exhaustion...etc. but really and truly, i am SO thankful for God's graciousness in providing him with a job AND for mike's willingness to work hard and his desire to provide for our family. i am so proud of the man God gifted me with...so thankful for his love and cherishing of all of his girls...so thankful for his wisdom and leadership and protection. i'm a fortunate and blessed woman!

9. our newly rearranged downstairs. mike's parents gifted us with a flat screen TV as an early (and very generous!) Christmas/birthday present. we have been wanting to do some rearranging of our living spaces, and part of that plan was to have the TV mounted on the wall to give us a bit more room...well, his parents kindly wanted to help us out with that plan, and surprised us with the TV to set things in motion. we now have a more defined (and less cluttered with toys and kid stuff) living area in our front room as you enter the house and then a play/toyroom in our back living area downstairs. i'm loving the extra space it gives us...not to mention it is much more relaxing to have a completely separate area for the majority of the toys! here is our new arrangement....
the playroom...

the living room...yes, the girls are in fact watching "word world" (one of our favorites on PBS kids) during the taking of this picture!

10. the pricelessness of friendship. oh what a blessing sunday morning to have encouraging conversations with several friends who have multiple children. specifically i have been struggling with kate...she is such a delight to our hearts, but oh my, she can also give us a run for our money with her stubborness and defiance at times...so much more so than elizabeth ever did. we have tried and tried with several methods of discipline, to little avail...and quite frankly, friends, it leaves me often feeling like a failure, feeling frustrated, discouraged, and simply exhausted, to be honest. funny, these friends weren't trying to "fix" the problem...they didn't give me a magic solution (though they had fabulous ideas and suggestions to work in that direction)...nope, they simply shared their own experiences with similar situations....and, oh my, what a balm to the soul to be reminded that we are not alone...to be reminded that kate's behavior doesn't make ME a failure...AND it doesn't doom her for life...she WILL grow...we will continue making steps in the right direction....and as for kate...well, i am thankful that when she isn't in the midst of a melt-down of defiance God made her just about as cute as can be. as one friend said of her more difficult daughter, "i think God made her so stinkin' cute and funny because He KNEW...He knew i would need that cuteness and laughter in the midst of the hard moments." oh my, how i love and cherish my curly headed, spunky little kater gator...but oh my, Jesus, I need you...i need you every hour!

11. ...and finally, i was reminded of something this past sunday when we sang "I Need Thee Every Hour" in church. friends, did you know that it was written by a stay-at-home housewife and mother of five. how much do we each need to remember and cry out to the Lord EVERY day..."I need thee, oh i need thee, every hour i need thee; oh bless me now my Savior, i come to thee." click here for the full lyrics (and scoop on the hymn's author). i am praying this might be the cry of my heart and of yours as we navigate the rest of the week!


Rebecca said...

well hello there. oh your girls are just so cute. love the pics of libs holding jillian...too sweet! and kate sucking her thumb on the couch...precious! i know all to well what you mean when you talk about how difficult kate has been. our difficult child is actually liberty. some days i really do not know what do do with her and i often wonder if i am failing. it is so encouraging to know we're not alone! jillian looks so sweet sleeping with her elephant blankie ;). and wow for rolling over so early! nadia has been like that as well...and then started crawling and pulling herself up at 6 months. craziness! your living room and play room look great (we love word world here, too). hooray for a date night...we had a date afternoon the other day...so refreshing. i'm so looking forward to fall as well. thanks for sharing about "i need thee every hour." i never knew the background of the song and i enjoyed learning about it. definitely a great reminder of a song during motherhood (and life!).
oh...and of course i'll pass on the pattern for the hat. the one i knit for nadia i added 10 stitches to make it a little bigger around. anyway. i found the pattern online at:
click on "babies" under free patterns, then "baby hats" and then "ripple eyelet hat"
it's pretty easy, so i'm sure you'd be able to squeeze it in some time!

Jamie said...

what a great story to that hymn (which is also so special to me.) thanks for sharing that! i am continually amazed at your beautiful outlook and attitude. you are an encouragement, amanda!

Amy's Blah, Blah, Blogging said...

I'm wondering if this is a second child thing going on. I cannot believe what a difference my two girls are! Anna is a get up and go, aggressive, take on the world kind of chick, where as Lilla was always so laid back and hanging out. I've got a live one on my hands there! So oh, how I can relate with wondering what twists and turns await me in the disciplining arena there. I say no to her and she just laughs and laughs. What a pill!

So great that you guys were able to get a date night. What a blessing your sweet friends and family have been to you guys to allow you to have those precious moments together!

Aren't the new mommy meals the best? Love it!

Have a great week Amanda!

Nancy M. said...

Great smiles! I am so glad everything is going well for you! Cute pictures! It's wonderful you have so many great friends!

Little Candle said...

These are wonderful smiles. I always get so much out of your sharings...encouragement, hope, joy. And to respond to your note, yes I can't wait to meet up with you as well...just let me know when you are ready. No hurry! Hugs Sweet Friend!

swell.life said...

Miss Jillian is absolutely precious and perfect in every way. You certainly have your hands full these days! So great to hear how well you're adjusting with your outings and activities. What a great mama you are!