Monday, December 24, 2012

Oh, he is yours . . .

     Yep, that was my kid up on stage with the lead singer of the worship team.  Drew couldn't find his way back to us after the pastor read all of the kiddos the Christmas Story. What wonderful people we have at church - one man picked him up and took him to the stage where the worship leader held him until Tony made his way over there.  (He was already on his way but hadn't gotten there yet)  Drew was a bit freaked out and said "but I went straight!"  and couldn't figure out why he didn't get back to us! 

     This was our first year attending Christmas Eve service here and it was nice and short, with lots of music, and you can tell the pastor and others planning the service put a lot of thought into how to keep the little ones engaged and interested.  The service started with a song and then the pastor reading to the kiddos and ended with the kids being invited back up onto the stage to sing and dance during the last song.  (Unfortunately Drew was a little scarred from earlier and too scared to go back up - - then he was mad because he was missing it and it only happens oncce a year!)

Afterwards we went and he got to hug his little friend from preschool so all was well.  On home to eat, put out cookies for Santa, read The Night Before Christmas, and go to sleep so Christmas can come quickly!  I put a bell on the outside of Austin's door because HE is so excited he wakes up at 6am and has to wait for his little brother to wake up! 


Monday, September 24, 2012

A few updates

Happy Fall to all!  I am very excited my favorite season is here again :)

    ~ We have a dog.  Anyone who knows my husband's feelings about our previous dog and that experience knows how much of a miracle it is that we have another dog.  (and I haven't even graduated yet!) 

     Our new dog's name is Dobby (yes from Harry Potter) and he is an almost 4 year old miniature dachshund.  He is a barker, licker, and cuddler.  He loves to lay with whoever is sitting and sleeps in bed with us each night - unless he is sleeping with Drew!

     I think Dobby is a great addition to our family and I for one am very glad he is a part of our family  :)

  ~ I am feeling pretty good about my classes this semester.  I don't know if it is already being finished with one clinical (5 weeks) or that I got solid Bs on both of my first tests in clinical courses.  (Which is GOOD Mom and Dad!)  I have 5 more weeks of my OB clinical and then clinicals are finished until next semester.  I hope this semester continues to go well and I can keep counting down the weeks until my long-awaited and hard-earned graduation.

    ~ Austin is in MIDDLE SCHOOL this year.  He really seems to like it and is doing very well in all of his classes.  The 6th graders aren't allowed to do team sports so right now he is just doing intramurals.  Next year he will probably play football and maybe basketball.  The 0615 wake up time is rough some days, but he is adjusting well.

    ~ Drew is in Pre-K this year and LOVES it!!!  He goes to a church preschool near us and has made friends and hugs his teacher and can't hardly wait until after lunch to go to school each day.  I am very glad he enjoys school - this momma sort of didn't want to let her baby grow up, but it is good to see how much he likes to interact with the other children.  He is already looking forward to being 6 so he can go to kindergarten and ride the bus like his big brother.

    ~ We are starting on redecorating our half bath.  Right now it is a lovely green and pink sponge paint with a n even lovelier wallpaper border on the walls and stained carpet.  We are putting in hard flooring and painting the walls a solid color with NO border, as well as changing the towel ring, toilet paper holder, and sink faucet.  If all turns out how I envisioned it will look very nice.  If not, well Tony will make the rest of the decorating decisions!

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Curtains and bathrooms and bedrooms, oh my!

     I have officially made my first decor change in our house, and it is amazing how much better it looks!  The previous owners left blue and white checked curtains on the front living room windows (big  windows!) and I have been perusing the stores for inexpensive replacements since we moved in.  Today I found some curtains and took down those old ones - -

     The new ones are an ivory color and let a lot more light into the room.  They are also calmer (to my eye) and look SO much better from the outside of the house.  I no longer cringe because my eyes are instantly drawn to the blue as I drive up to our house.  Small changes can make a big difference!

     My next two small projects are replacing the sink faucet in the downstairs bathroom, as Drew and other little ones can't turn it on and off easily, and some can't at all; and getting rid of the pink vertical blinds that are in the playroom. Maybe if I had girls instead of boys they would work better.  I have the curtains and rods to put up but just need some assistance from the hubby.  He has been busy lately at his mom's house, along with myself and his brother and wife,  renovating my mother in law's bathroom and back bedroom while she is on vacation.  This has, I think, been more of a process than we anticipated but hopefully by the time she gets back she will have an amazing new bathroom and bedroom.  (The alternative is she stays with us or my brother in law and wife until we are finished - we love her but. . .  I'm sure she wants to be in her own house). 

     Next week the boys are at my parents' house for Grandkids week (WOOHOO!!!) and I look forward to the calm and quiet, at least for a few days.  I know I will miss them before we get them back though.  They really do light up my days and I feel so blessed to be their mother.

Friday, June 29, 2012

Our Summer 2012

This summer has been HOT so far and doesn't look like it is cooling down much anytime soon.  We have been spending a lot of time at my parents' pool and it is very refreshing on the hot days.  Although our basement doesn't have any furniture in it yet, it feels so good down there, and we have taken pillows down to sit on and hang out a few times.

I am taking a beginning American Sign Language (ASL) class through the local parks department.  I am really enjoying it and learning a lot of signs.  Austin and Drew keep asking me what the signs are for different things and I love teaching them what I have learned. 

No Wildcat baseball this year for Austin and I must say I am relieved.  Last year many days were a struggle to get him to go and have a good attitude about it, and I am glad I don't need to sit in the oppressive heat this year.  Drew still has one more year before he can play, but I'm sure he will enjoy it as Austin did when he was younger.

We are doing a work share CSA again through a local farm, working 3 hours a week in exchange for vegetables.  I take Austin some days to help; he likes to seed and transfer small plants because he gets to play in dirt :)  This is still the best way in my mind to get fresh, organic vegetables from June to the middle of October.  I know for a fact the lettuce is triple-washed because I do it many weeks!  I am still looking for more ways to use kohlrabi, I've used it in salads and as a substitute for cucumbers on sandwiches, but need to figure out how to cook it so it tastes good.

Both boys are doing our library's summer reading program and are really excited about it.  Austin is officially finished with the minutes for the entire program and thankfully found a new series of books he loves.  This series has 8 books and he has finished 3 so far.  Drew is getting more into reading new (to him) books we choose at the library instead of rereading his favorites all of the time, and I must say this momma is loving the variety!   

We don't have any big trips planned for this summer and probably will stay pretty close to home.  We did get a membership to the Indianapolis Zoo so we can go down there and enjoy that zoo a few more times before school starts.  Tony's family has a reunion planned for the end of July, and of course the kids go to Grandkids week at my parents' house the last week in July.  Hopefully Tony and I will paint their bedrooms while the boys are gone and they will be thrilled with the changes. 

Just a little update on what's going on with our summer -- and before we know it school starts again.  This year Drew is in preschool and Austin is in MIDDLE SCHOOL! 

Monday, March 19, 2012

Welcome to Stress City

Hi, I'm Beth your mayor.

Somehow I have a big test and my huge assessment paper due within two days of each other. In addition to that our not yet unpacked house is just sitting here, mocking my lack of time to unpack. I feel like I am living in chaos and it is not helping me focus on my work for school.

I worked 3 hours on my paper today and hope to work some on it each day and finish it Friday. Starting Friday evening I will study for my test next Wednesday. It feels good to have a plan but executing it will be tricky. When I am home of course the boys expect me to be available to them, as it should be. So that means I trek back to school to study (or I could go to our empty rental house...hmmm).

I spent a little time tonight watching a movie to veg out after the others went to bed. Part of me feels guilty about it but another part knows I will not have time to do much other than study later this week until Wednesday at 10am, so I guess it was okay.

I know I will get through this, I am just tired of the (seemingly) never-ending stress associated with nursing school. Can't wait until after finals week!

Friday, February 24, 2012

New additions to our family

Tuesday was my birthday and I received gifts I didn't think were possible...

I was on my way to clinical and Tony called me. He said "you aren't going to believe this" and proceeded to tell me our two MALE guinea pigs now have two babies! Drew was talking to his guinea pig and said "Dad! Our guinea pigs have babies now!" Tony didn't believe him at first. Funny how the pet store that only sells male guinea pigs slipped that one though. . .

The babies are super cute and come out with fur and while they do drink mama's milk they also can eat regular food from day 1. We have no idea what we are going to do with the babies or the mom or dad. I hate to give one away but we need to separate them. She may already be pregnant again anyway - they can get pregnant as early as 8 hours after giving birth.

In other news, we went out for pizza tonight and the boys (voluntarily) sat on the same side of the booth. They did great! Usually Drew yells at Austin for getting too close to his personal 'spot' and they just get on each others nerves. We even all played I Spy while we were waiting for our food. I am so proud of them both!

Friday, February 17, 2012

Valentine's Day(s) and this week

Valentine's Day this year came a little early for me. I had clinical until 2230 (1030p) on Tuesday, so on Saturday the 11th around 4p Tony came into the living room and told me to pack Drew's bag and take the boys to his brother's house. Austin had known about this for a day or two. I took the boys and came home to a dinner of steak, asparagus, baked potatoes and dessert of homemade molten chocolate cake. It was so wonderful! He is very thoughtful because I figured we would just give each other a kiss before I went to the hospital and that would be it (good thing I had already bought him a gift!).

This week was the first week I haven't watched my brother's boys 2 days a week. I have missed them! But -- it is really nice to have a full day for just Mommy and Drew. I was also able to take my time grocery shopping and Drew and I had lunch with Tony on his break. Next Thursday I hope to take Drew down to the Indy Children's Museum.

We are searching for a preschool for Drew. The church we have been attending doesn't have a preschool, so I have been looking online at some other churches around here. If only I could transport our church and school in Greenwood up here. . .

I was looking over my goals for this year and the church and house goals are moving along. The bedtime at 11 goal is not going as well - I have been trying to go to bed before midnight so far with a future goal of 11p. Baby steps. Reading a non-school book is not a realistic goal while I am in the middle of school but I know once this semester is over and I have a break I will read a LOT. I always do, I just need to make sure I don't read only fluff books. Exercise, exercise, exercise. This seems to be my Achilles' heel. I have been playing Just Dance more often but other than that have fallen short on exercising as much as I would like.
I have been packing packing and packing boxes and it still doesn't look like we are moving for awhile if you judge by the amount of stuff I have left to pack. Seriously how did we get so much? I really need to make sorting and giving away a priority after this semester is over. Maybe we will have a garage sale in our new house!

In other news, the Detroit Red Wings just won their 22nd consecutive home game. I don't really enjoy hockey but Tony is watching the game. :)

Have a great weekend!

Sunday, February 5, 2012

My Week (1/31)

I had my first nursing test of the semester this week and I got a B. I am very happy with this, since over half of the class did not pass (75% or above is passing). Only four more tests to go and a 100 page paper and this class is over!!

Austin's science fair was this past week and he got a Superior on his project. He chose to do an experiment on the effects of drag and made an umbrella contraption connected to a bag that held an egg. He dropped the contraption from different heights to see how much the egg cracked. I thought it was a great idea that he came up with for his project. We encouraged him to figure out a question and experiment himself as much as possible but helped when he asked or really got stuck. (Sometimes I feel like we are putting him at a disadvantage because we don't take over more and "help" him more but then again I want him to be able to do his own work as he gets older and not use us. I think some of his friends' parents may help more or he is in class with super-genius kids - who knows??)

My nephew turned 5 this week and his birthday party was at a local ice skating rink - but we didn't skate. They also have bounce houses set up by one of the rinks and the kids all got to play in those for awhile. My boys had so much fun running around and jumping and bouncing in those! I was cold watching them (literally right beside the rink) but they didn't seem to mind and Austin even took off his sweatshirt because he was hot! I also got to hold my baby nephew during the party and he fell asleep on me, so that was a nice bonus.

Drew has started learning how to read - really just sound out letters so far; we are doing a phonics program together. I think he is ready and he seems to like it, although he gets a little antsy towards the end. I remember Austin at this age and we used to do math and spelling while he was doing jumping jacks or some other movement to keep his body moving but still keep focus on the task at hand. This may be what Drew needs at this time also, we will see how the next few times go.

I am very proud to say that we have lived in Indy - - from everything I've heard this week they have done an amazing job of hosting the Super Bowl. I have heard quite a few people on TV saying Indy has done one of the best jobs hosting (now I don't know if they say this every year, but I can't really see that happening). The weather has even been cooperating, for the most part it has been warmer than usual. I wish we could've gone down one morning to see the Mike & Mike broadcast but it didn't work out. We are watching the big game at home and just hanging out with Tony's brother and his wife. It should be a fun and low-key time.

Feb 4 marks two years since Tony's grandma died. She was a wonderful woman who raised a great family and I still miss her. When we moved back to the Fort we started having dinner with her each week and saw her a few times a week. I'm very glad Austin and Drew got quality time with their great grandma (or as Drew calls her "the other grandma") before she passed. We were blessed to have such a lady in our lives.

Monday, January 23, 2012

My Week (1/16)

This past week we had an exciting development in our house hunting - the sellers accepted our offer! We should close before March 10th and will be all moved in before April starts (our lease ends March 31st). We are all very excited about this house, it has been a long time renting these past 4 years (well some time lived w/parents rent-free!) and it will be so nice to have a place that is OURS. Our boys will each get their own room and Tony will have an office away from all of the action, so he should be a working machine :)

Today is Tony's birthday. The boys and I got him a few gifts and we are going out to eat with family a couple days this week. He is taking a nap right now and hopefully it will be nice and energizing for him. We will see if he can find his gifts later to open them - Drew hid them from Daddy in the living room after we wrapped them!

School is going. . . that's about all for now. I am getting the hang of when everything is due for my online classes, nothing is hard for those but there is a lot of busywork due each week. Next Wednesday is my first test for my nursing class and I am leaving my family for 2 days to study. It might sound extreme but I really want to get a good grade on the first couple of tests to set myself up for a good outcome. I don't want to be one of the students who has to ace the final to pass the class. Too much stress for me.

Austin got information about middle school for next year. :( I can't believe my baby is old enough for this!! I remember middle school for me and all I can say is I hope his experience is better. He is signing up for band and we are pushing for him to play trumpet or sax (we have Tony's trumpet and Uncle Steve has a sax). But really, as long as he enjoys whatever he ends up playing is the most important thing.

I think I am going to start teaching Drew to read soon. My friend has used Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons with much success for 2 kiddos and I looked through the book while at the store today and it actually does look easy, about 20 minutes a day. I feel like Drew is bored with his days and needs more difficult things to engage his mind. I do need to look at preschools for next year just for playing with other kids but I am dragging my feet on that. I would really love to homeschool him all the way through; I just need to convince my husband this is the right thing for Drew and our family. We will see. . .

If anyone has boxes they don't need or time to help pack, come on over!

Saturday, January 14, 2012

This Week (1/9)

This was my first week back for the spring semester. I am always overwhelmed by the first week, especially online classes, since I have to figure it out by myself! I have two online classes this semester, Family Communication and Art Appreciation. I'm taking it easy so I can really focus on and study for my nursing Med-Surg class. This is the do-or-die class for nursing majors, and I want to do well and get past it.

This weekend I am watching my friend's children (2 of the 3). Friday when I watch my nephews and niece, that all added up to 10 kids! It was a bit crazy for part of the time but it was fun. I definitely fell asleep when my head hit the pillow though. Today was a fun day of playing and hanging out.

This week we put an offer in on one of the houses we liked, and have countered and now need to reply to the latest counter. I'm not super happy with the seller but whatever happens, happens. Either we get this house or move on and find another one. I am trying to look at the bright side and at least we won't be the ones with two house payments if we don't end up agreeing on an offer!

I read the Indy Star on my iPhone usually daily and am getting excited about the SuperBowl. It makes me wish we still lived there so we could really be a part of the excitement! I'm encouraging Tony to go down at least one morning to watch Mike & Mike's show since he listens to it everyday. I would love to go down too, depending on whether or not I have class.

I am hoping to write a post each week just to keep up on anything new happening in our lives.

Monday, January 9, 2012

A New Year

Here we are again at the start of a new calendar year and a new semester of college (for me). Hopefully 2012 will bring many good things into our lives, we are certainly working toward them!

This year, we will find a church home and stop hopping into different churches off and on. I really enjoyed the church we attended this past Sunday, it almost felt like a smaller version of our church in Greenwood (which we loved!) Drew enjoyed himself in kid church and I think Austin wishes he had gone with the elementary kids instead of staying with us for the service. Praying for guidance as we decide where to make our home.

We hope to buy a house in the first few months of the year. We have it narrowed down to two and think we know which we will put an offer on, so that should be an exciting start to the year! I am very excited for this to be our last move for a very very very loooong time!

I am planning on reading one book to help my personal growth each month, other than my nursing textbooks! One book may not seem like much but these darn nursing classes involve a lot of reading and studying. I guess our instructors don't want us to kill our patients :) My book for January is Your Best Life Now by Joel Osteen. I read this a few years ago and it is a good, positive read to begin the new year. It is also an easy read so it fits well into my "free" time.

My goal time to be going to sleep is 11pm on days I don't have an exam/ assignment due the next day. I tend to stay up way too late and I am definitely getting too old for that. I feel like I have no energy the next day. Going to bed earlier should help me not feel like a zombie in the mornings.

Exercising more seems to be a goal I set each year. I'll set it again as a goal to exercise 3x a week. I'd prefer running at least one time a week but for now I may have to walk and work up to running... We have Just Dance 2 and 3 for the Wii and even when I'm just dancing with Drew it is a good and fun workout. I would like to do this also at least 2 times a week, just for fun (with the added benefit).

I have a few other goals for this year but this is enough for now. I would also like to learn to cook better food, but this may have to wait until after I am finished with school. I really need to prioritize while I am still taking courses, and am very blessed to have a husband who is an excellent cook!

I'll definitely update on the house journey when we get an accepted offer/close/move in :)