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Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Sleeping and Crying

So far, the hardest thing about parenting for us(me) is figuring out sleep/cry stuff. Some people don't let their kids cry themselves to sleep at all, some let their kids cry and cry. To solve the crying problem some parents co-sleep. Others rock their kids to sleep and then ever so gently lay them down, only to have their kid wake back up and the routine starts over again.

As we've established Titus's bedtime routine, he has easily fallen into a groove with it. What has been great about it, is that when he finishes nursing, I burp him and lay him down in his cradle and kiss his head and cover him up. He is normally very sleepy but he knows I put him down and he settles in and doesn't make a peep - other than sometimes sucking his fist a bit - and falls asleep. He has been great at it and I have been so proud of my boy for doing such an excellent job going to bed.

The past two nights have been different. I'm not sure what the change has been. But I've burped him and laid him down and he has cried so hard. Since it's been out of the norm, I keep going in to check on him. I soothe him and see if I can get any more burps out of him. He settles the INSTANT I pick him up. I rock him and tell him I love him but that it's still night night. I lay him back down and he cries and my heart just breaks.

Tonight, he cried, I picked him up. He burped. I laid him back down. He cried. I picked him up. No burps. Laid him down. He cried. I kept him in his cradle but rubbed his back and "shh shhed" him. He cried. I picked him up. Soothed him. We rocked for a few minutes and then I told him that this was it. It was still night night and mommy couldn't come back in this time. I laid him down and we both cried really hard tonight.

=(

(Note: I am not asking for any advice, just merely sharing. Thanks.)

Popy LaDashy

This is the story of Popy LaDashy.

A few years ago I was housesitting for the Coudsy fam as they celebrated Christmas in Texas. Mike and/or Lisa, Jeff and Lauren and Adam and I went over to watch a movie at some point and up on the Coudsy's fireplace mantle was a big white snowman with raised arm, as if it were waving. Next to the snowman, on the mantle, was a wooden block sign that said Happy Holidays. We made fun of the sign for saying Happy Holidays instead of Merry Christmas. Adam then proceeded to rearrange the letters. What was born that day was Popy LaDashy, the waving Christmas snowman. When the Coudsys came home their Happy Holidays sign was next to the snowman saying "Hi Popy LaDashy."

For my bridal shower, Susan gave me the wooden blocks. That Christmas, Lisa, painted Popy LaDashy onto a canvas for us to hang on our wall.

Popy is 3 years old now and we are hoping he will grow and prosper and bring lots of smiles to people.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Titus Tells

Well I tried. I've been trying to upload this video since last night. Blogger refuses... maybe one day.
It's like 2 minutes long but the end is cute. This is Titus telling Daddy about his first Christmas:

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Christmas Reflection 3

Reflection 3:
Since I have a wee babe I've been thinking alot about Jesus as a baby. What sticks out to me the most, is Christ's humility.

Humility = humiliating. No one likes to be humiliated.

Jesus became a baby. A helpless, needy baby. He mildly laid his glory aside, fit himself into the womb of a teenager who was ready to be ashamed, and came out in a busy busy busy busy town that cared nothing of who he was.

As I've nursed Titus, I've thought of Jesus and how Mary nursed him. To me, I am amazed at how humble a suckling babe is. They rely on their mother to feed them. All they can do is cry when they are hungry but just because they cry doesn't mean their tummy is filled. There is nothing they can do to satisfy their hunger until the breast is placed in their mouth. I know it's graphic, but it's humbling. Babies have to open their mouths wide and use their tongue to suck the milk and to think that Jesus had to do that astounds me. Jesus, the God of all, had to suck his milk from a sinful human. It makes me pause. It makes me pause again. I think about it a lot. He was humble. And I am thankful.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Christmas Reflection 2

There is a little snowman hanging on the doorknob of one of the apartments down the way from us. The snowman sign has a message on it that says:

MERRY
cHRISTMAS

Exactly like that. All caps except for the "C."

It makes me so sad.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Christmas Reflections

Every year I always have some different reflections/observations as I think about and anticipate and experience Christmas. Every year, there is either a new song that really reaches my heart or a song lyric that I have sung for twenty-something years that strikes a new chord in my heart and understanding. Something I fall in love with, inside.

This year I haven't found a new song. But as the season progressed I patiently waited to see what would strike my heart. It happened in church Sunday morning. We were singing Hark the Herald Angels Sing. Titus was in his moby wrap singing his lungs out (so precious!) and I leaned down to kiss the top of his head so I stopped singing and reflecting on the words for a moment but when I finished the kiss, I came in singing; "Mild He lays His glory by." It's a simple line but, it's packed. It's kenosis.

Christ MILDLY laid aside His GLORY. That's so huge. Glory and mild are like, antonyms. He voluntarily did it. He humbly did it. He did it.

I'm thankful.

I have more Christmas Reflections. But I'll share them later.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Titus's Ornament

We bought Titus his first Christmas ornament this year. It doesn't say Baby's First Christmas on it but, before we pack it away, I will write on the bottom of it.

Titus has always had a fabulous grip. That considered, we really wanted him to put his ornament on the tree this year. So we put the ornament in his hand and leaned him into the tree. He held it for a good while but when he let go this is how the ornament settled. I LOVE it. LOVE it. We will always have our kids hang ornaments on our tree no matter how good or bad it winds up looking.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Laundry

People have been getting rude here at The Californian when it comes to laundry. It makes me sad because the bulk of people who live here are believers. There are tons of stay-at-home-moms.

A couple weeks ago, my friend Lisa came over to do some Christmas crafting with me and she brought laundry to do during her couple hours here. She got her laundry into the washer and in the allotted amount of time went down to move it to the dryer. And then within the allotted amount of time went down to claim it and bring it back up to our apt to fold it. When she got down there. There was a lady who had moved all of Lisa's laundry back into her laundry basket and told Lisa that she 'didn't have time to wait.' I thought that was pretty rude especially considering that Lisa didn't leave it sitting for hours unattended in the machines.

Today I did a load of laundry and the same thing happened. I promptly moved it from washer to dryer and after the allotted amount of dryer time I went down to grab it. It was all sitting in my basket on top of the washing machines. It was still hot. So I just missed whoever it was that moved it. But it was still HOT. That means she either 1. ended my drying time before it was up since it normally does a little bit of a cool down or 2. was impatient and thought I wasn't coming to deal with it. It REALLY bothers me. I was there to get my laundry. Instead it was stuffed in my basket getting wrinkly. I did not keep that person waiting. AND I was only using 1 of the 4 dryers. I'm pretty sure they are using all 4 now.

Adam and I agreed to never monopolize the machines. That's not considerate when it comes to community living. We don't hog stuff for ourselves.

Anyway, I wrote Adam an email about the situation. I also picked up the phone to call the manager but hung it back up. I sinfully wanted to just open the dryer that my clothes were in and stop the person's load from drying in sync with all 3 other loads, but thankfully the Holy Spirit convicted me against doing that.

(Even though I still really want to.)

If it were me, and I desperately needed use of all 4 dryers and someones finished load was in there I would at least fold it for them or SOMETHING. But I would just never let things get to a point where I had to take someones laundry out so that I could use the machine. It's rude and inconsiderate and selfish. Plus we dry a lot of little things now that we have a baby and I like to double and triple check the dryer because there are crevices in there where things get stuck when you empty the dryer out and now I'll not really know if all my stuff made it out of the dryer.

There were some ladies out front hanging out. I almost asked if they moved my laundry, but I figured I needed to give myself a couple hours to just absorb my pride and get some distance from the emotion. Hopefully Adam will be home for lunch and I can get some perspective from him. If he agrees, then I will call the manager.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Dinner

I had some sweet potatoes I bought a few weeks ago and I figured I ought to use them soon so that they wouldn't go bad. I am LOVING sweet potatoes/yams recently. My friend Anna had sent me a recipe for a chicken chili with sweet potatoes, but I didn't have all the ingredients for it, so I began browsing the web for a suitable/similar recipe.

I found a link for a vegan sweet potato stew. I figured it would be a good idea to add some more protein besides just the little bit of beans so I added chicken.

One thing I do to help myself with meal prep now that I have a baby is to cook common meats in bulk. Now if you know me, you know that I am not on super friendly terms with meat. I'm reallllllllllly picky about my meat. That being said I basically cook with ground beef and chicken breasts. Sometimes I use pork, but I don't venture much further or even into different cuts of meat. It's just a little scary and unknown and not really in my repertoire. Maybe that will be a New Year's Resolution of mine..

Anyway, I buy a bag of chicken breasts, throw them in my crockpot and add my basic spices: salt, pepper, garlic and oregano. (I can spice them further when I know how I will be using them later on down the road in different recipes - Italian, Mexican etc.) Maybe if I'm digging through the cupboard I'll add another spice or two. Throw the lid on and cook 'em all day. By all day, I mean several hours. After those hours have passed I use my tongs that look like this:


And just attack the meat while it's still in the crockpot and shred, shred, shred. I used to pull the meat out and wait for it too cool then shred it all by hand. Time consuming! This works waaay better. Then I just use quart size freezer bags and portion the meat into the bags and throw it in my freezer. Then when I need it, I just pull a bag out. Last night with the stew, the chicken was still totally frozen, but who cares when you're throwing it in a crockpot? So quick and handy.

Back to the stew. It was GOOD! Adam really liked it. I also tried a new biscuit recipe.

I can't find the link again for the stew, but here is the biscuit recipe.

Sweet Potato Stew:

Saute:
1/2 c onion - chopped
1 garlic clove - chopped
olive oil

Throw in crockpot and cook on low for 8 hours:
The above onions and garlic
4 c sweet potatoes (1/2" cubed)
1-1/2 c red beans ( I used a can of kidney beans and a can of black beans)
1-1/2 c broth
1 c red bell pepper - chopped (I didn't have it so I didn't use it)
1/2 c water
1 (14.5oz) can diced tomatoes - drained
1 (4 or 4.5 oz) can chopped green chiles - drained
1tsp ginger
1/2 tsp cumin
salt
pepper

THEN:
scoop out some broth - about a cup - and whisk in 3 Tbsp of peanut butter. I also whisked in a few spoonfuls of flour because the stew seemed more soupy/brothy and I wanted it thick and stewy. Pour that mixture back into the crockpot. Stir and serve.

The recipe said you could sprinkle chopped peanuts on top. I didn't have any but it would be good. With the amount of my sweet potatoes I ended up having to 1-1/2 times this recipe. It made a lot. My crockpot was pretty full. So I portioned the leftovers out into 2 quart size freezer bags (they are good friends of mine) and will freeze the leftovers so that we don't have to eat sweet potato stew for the rest of the week.



=)

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Jumbalaya

When Grandad and Lola were here they bought Titus this giraffe. Adam named him Jumbalaya. Not Jambalaya. Jumb. Jumbalaya has brought entertainment to Titus's world. One thing we've noticed about Titus is that if something doesn't really interact back with him, he gets frustrated. So at first Titus was talking to Jumba. Talking lots. So I grabbed the camera. Of course when I started filming was when Titus got frustrated. Tell me that pout of his doesn't break your heart like it breaks mine. Anyway, he started pouting so I was gonna get him, then it seemed like he might calm down again, but he didn't. So I had to intervene.


video

Did you see it? The pout? Did your heart break? Mine did.

Monday, December 6, 2010

New Ornaments

Every year we get a new Christmas ornament or 2 or 3. Last year our yearly ornaments were 2 wooden robots that were our wedding cake topper. There is even still cake on the bottom of them. (They're hanging from an "E". I have a sign on our treetop that says PEACE, instead of the typical angel or star or bow.)





This year when Adam went to Target he came home with the most adorable owl ornament for me. I love it so much! Hanging to the right of it is a sparkly blue and white mushroom. I bought that one this year at Cost Plus. Saw the mushroom and couldn't resist it's cuteness. So our theme this year seems to be nature related ornaments.



We went with multi colored lights on the tree this year. So fun. So us. And our tree is propped up on an old wooden picnic basket to make it look taller and more eclectic. Again, so us.

I'm really diggin' our tree this year.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Thanksgiving Pie

Adam thought it would be fun to make a pie for Thanksgiving. So Wednesday night when the family arrived at our apartment, Adam set to work making the pie. He had made it all alone for Turkeys, Tarts and Testimonies but this time he thought it would be fun to make it a family affair.


Adam's mom, aka Lola, helped us make the crust look so delectable.







It was The Pioneer Woman's pumpkin cream pie. And I just remembered there is still one piece left. I think I will go eat it.