Monday, December 20, 2010

I am really tired. I mean reeeaaalllly tired. I haven't been this tired since my first trimester of my pregnancy with Ella. Thankfully, I know that it is 99.99% impossible for me to be pregnant right now. I'm not sure I could handle another "task" at this point in time. I am always so anxious for the end of the year to get here. It's Christmas, which is so exciting. It starts off with Thanksgiving and the various parties at different family members' houses, then Black Friday (which I still don't think I recover from until the first of the year anyway) and then December hits. Christmas planning, birthday party planning, work.... Well I've got Ella's party planned and all of her presents purchased, the cake is on order, and the goodie bags are decided upon. Thankfully this year I was able to get it all done BEFORE Christmas instead of trying to rush the last minute details together during the week between Christmas and her birthday. So, with that said, I'm going to finish my coffee, stop complaining and be so incredibly thankful for my beautiful daughters and my fantastic husband who should really stop going out of town for work so much! Merry Christmas to you. I hope your holidays are perfect and filled with joy and the realization that we are saved by the birth of Jesus Christ. And that, my friends, is the greatest gift of all.

the little things

Thursday, November 11, 2010

I love it when both girls' naptimes happen at the same time. That means that I either 1) get to rock Sadie while she dreams away in my arms or 2) I get to lay down in Ella's bed and take a nap with her. It's those moments when it is quiet, there's no crying, and just a quiet peace covers the entire house. These are the moments when I get to just sit (or sleep) and experience the beautiful moments happening in my life. My children are amazing and wonderful and bring me more happiness than I could ever imagine. And it just keeps getting better.

And check out Ella's new glasses. Doesn't she look cute?

more than just an errand

Friday, September 24, 2010

Oh, the grocery store. I dread heading to Wal-Mart. Aside from random strangers sticking their grubby paws into the car seat and caressing my 4 month old's face or elderly people grabbing my 2 1/2 year old by the arm and expect her to carry on a conversation with them about how pretty her blonde curls are (good luck!), it's just not my favorite place to go. People will really get their feelings hurt that she won't give them hugs and be sweet and talkative with them. I wish people would be a little more understanding to the fact that she's TWO! I've had to have so many conversations with Ella about how we aren't mean to people who try and talk to her. I'll tell her "If you don't want to talk to them, just smile and wave. You don't have to give them the meanest face and shout No! at them." I can tell her that all day long, but the fact of the matter is that she does not like strangers coming up to HER and forcing a conversation. She does, however, stop random strangers and talk to them. It has to be on her terms.

Anyhow, as the three of us trudged through Wal-Mart yesterday I realized something. This is more than just an errand. This is an outing. With a 2 year old, getting out of the house is exciting for her. She had a few people grab her, which makes her very uncomfortable. But she also would see random people walking by and for some reason she felt like they wanted, no, needed to know about the chocolate covered sunflower seeds in her hand that she picked out for the day's trip. I watched her converse with several people and realized that instead of dreading our trips to Wal-Mart, we should enjoy our time with the rest of the world. :) Our trips usually take us at least and hour and a half, lots of times two hours. We meander through the store and I have found that if I don't rush her and we just take our time looking at everything and walking the aisles, she really does have a great time. Schedules are great, but there's nothing wrong with throwing the schedule out of the window every once in a while when we can.

Life at Three Months

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Three months have gone by since I welcomed my sweet, sweet Sadie into the world. That day was phenomenal. So here are some things happening:

Sadie doesn't like to fall asleep. We bounce, rock, sway most of the day away. I'll put her in bed and 20 minutes later we're right back at it. It ususally takes me a few tries before she's finally asleep.
Ella is my easy sleeper. I put her in bed and she will sing to herself or lie there quietly until she's asleep. That was a long hard road when she was a baby, but i see now it was worth all the tears (mine AND hers).

Sadie is nursing (mostly. i have a milk supply problem so i'm supplementing 2-4 oz a day)
Ella is becoming a much less picky eater (due to mom and dad laying down the law at the table. it's hard work, but it is good for her)

Sadie is finally getting her voice. She talks and tries to laugh, but still hasn't quite got that part figured out. It comes out more like a cough.
Ella is fantastically smart. She can count to 20 (sometimes), count to 7 in Spanish, knows some sign language, prays for our meals, and loves referring to people by their nicknames. She calls me Paigerator most of the time and she LOVES her Grandazzle. :)

Sadie loves Baby Einstein. I can already tell that she loves music. She loves when I sing to her. She also loves being at church on Sundays. The music soothes her so much. (I think it's Laurie who soothes her. Connection, maybe?)
Ella loves baby Einstein. We spend many car rides singing Baa Baa Black Sheep, Twinkle Twinkle, Row Your Boat, Mary Had A Little Lamb, ABC's, Taylor Swift, The Zac Brown Band...pretty much anything we can think to sing. Josh just bought her a CD player for her room and she has the Taylor Swift CD that she can turn on and listen to it when she's getting ready for bed or waking up in the morning.

Sadie used to be a snugglebug. She has now decided she would rather have her own space.
Ella was never a snugglebug. I do get LOTS of hugs and kisses these days, though.

Sadie is FULL of smiles and she is absolutely a joy. We have some pretty difficult days sometimes, but she's an incredible addition to our family. I can't put into words how much I love that little girl.
Ella is also FULL of smiles. She even cooperates and smiles for the camera now! And she'll let me put her hair in a ponytail (sometimes). I can't believe she used to be a 3 month old. I don't remember when she grew up. I know one day I'm going to wake up and she's going to be 13. I don't want to think about it. She fills my heart with joy.

Sadie was a swing-baby. She would sit/sleep in her swing for 4 hours stretches. I called the swing my baby-sitter. But she's starting to move beyond the swing. She loves her bouncy seat right now. But mostly, she loves to be talked to and held. She will talk, laugh, and smile at you all day long if you have the time.
Ella loves play-dough, dancing, coloring, painting, dancing, reading, swimming, and dancing. Oh, and did I mention dancing??? We "get funky" in the car all the time. She asks me to find a funky song and we dance our little hearts out. I think the cars passing us think we have lost our minds. Or at least that I have. They probably don't see that I'm entertaining a 2-year old. More like she's entertaining me.

Life is great. I keep thinking something terrible has to be around the corner because there's no way I can get away with life being this good for too much longer. Josh is my rock. When I have bad days (yesterday) he swoops in and makes everything better. He started back to school yesterday. He's gone on Mon, Tues, Weds until 11 PM. It's difficult trying to figure out how to do this without his help. I'm not used to being outnumbered! Ella is so stinking easy these days. Sadie, however, is a muuuuuch different story. I'm sure I'll get a routine figured out sooner or later.


Wednesday, August 18, 2010

I felt so sorry for ella when I found out I was having another girl. I never had a sister. I never had to share my clothes, my friends, my room, my bathroom. I never really had to share anything. Having three older brothers, well they didn't care about having anything that was mine. So I felt sorry for her to have to share with her sister. It sounds miserable to me. Well, I don't feel sorry for her anymore:

Playing under the blanket together
Ella was explaining the cartoon to Sadie

My beautiful girls

Ella asks me all the time if Sadie can sleep in her bed yet

The first few days - Ella had no trouble welcoming her into the family
I love that they have each other and love each other so much already in these short three months. 

Sadie Emalyn Park

Monday, August 16, 2010

Sadie was born on May 20, 2010 at 2:49 in the afternoon. She weighed 9 pounds 10 ounces and was 21 1/2 inches long. She *insisted* on showing her big sister up in the size department! All in all, it was a very easy labor and delivery. Aside from some epidural mishaps, it eventually started working after a LOT of pokes and everything was breezy from there. Laurie came and took pictures during the labor and delivery process. I was a little apprehensive about how the day would play out. When I had Ella, the only other non-medical person in the room with me was Josh. Those of you who are Moms know that labor and delivery are not a mother's finest moments. Things can get intense...and downright gross. Josh vowed to love me for better or worse almost six years ago, so he had to love me no matter what happened in the delivery room. Having Laurie there for the pictures was amazing. She was so awesome about making sure that I wasn't uncomfortable with her being in there and my Mom also was able to stay in the room. Getting the hear the very first sounds of a new baby's life is truly amazing. Laurie took some incredible pictures that I would have missed had she not been in there. I never realized that the baby gets it's hair washed and those are probably my favorite pictures. I missed a lot of those first moments with Ella because even though the baby is here, Mom's job isn't done. So I got to see what I missed through her pictures of Sadie. The two most incredible moments of my life were bringing my two daughters into this world. I am really looking forward to doing it a third time, just not anytime soon. Because I REALLY don't miss being pregnant.

I'm going to share some of my favorite pictures from Sadie's journey into this world. And don't worry, I won't share the gross ones. :)

This one is funny to me:

she's perfect - finally posting this!

It's funny to go back and read this. Ella was so easy then, then she got crazy after Sadie got here, and now she's easy again. It's crazy how cyclical kids are! It's always changing. I was so worried about Sadie's arrival being a negative thing for Ella, but it's been the best thing for her. She absolutely loves being a big sister. It's like I gave her the best present ever. She doesn't resent me at all for having to take care of Sadie, she takes it all in stride and she's so helpful. She is an amazing, perfect little girl and I love her so much!


I have the easiest two year old right now. It's perfect timing, considering I'm about to have a newborn. She may regress when the baby gets here, but she and I have been having so much fun lately. She hardly ever gets into trouble. When we're at home, she tells me "Mommy, I want to take a nap" and so we go upstairs and about thirty seconds later, she's in bed and I'm on my own for the next 2 to 3 hours. She sleeps so well at night, she's potty trained (mostly), and we hardly ever have to discipline. She's good with her please's and thank you's and she's hardly ever moody. There are some times when she's so hyper that I get completely unnerved by it, but it's not so often anymore so that's good! She's still not good at sharing with other kids, but I figure that's because it has always been just her and she hasn't had to share yet. She's also the only girl in her class at Little Hands, so I'm sure she spends a lot of time defending herself from the boys! We've been having a lot of fun mommy/daughter time lately because I'm so worried about how she's going to react to Sadie's arrival. I already have to compete with Daddy so much as it is, I'm nervous that when I'm tending to a baby all day long, she's really going to resent me. My plan, as of now, is to include her in as much as I can and hopefully she will enjoy being my little helper.

We got down the bouncy chair, the infant car seat, and the swing last night so that I could strip them down and wash the pads. It's weird seeing all of this stuff again and remembering that Ella used to be small enough for all of these things. I still can't believe how much they grow up and you watch it the entire time, yet you don't realize it's happening. I love being a mother. I love my little Ella and I am so thrilled about our upcoming addition. I keep wishing it would happen, but I guess I need to work on my patience. Ella asks me a lot if Sadie is here yet. We're both ready! :)

I miss you, miss you

One year ago today was one of the saddest days of my life. Late on the night of the 15th we learned that you died. It was the most shocking phone call I've ever received. I remember where we were, what we were doing, who called, where I was sitting, who I was with....I remember it all. But it didn't really hit me until the next day. You really were gone. The timing was tragic. The circumstances were awful. You, one of my best friends who was so full of life, was suddenly in an instant taken from this world. You were such a big part of my life. You were there through high school, an annoying sophomore always begging for rides home from school :), you were there through my crappy boyfriends, you were there for me when I was really wrecking my life to bring me back on course, you were most of the reason I finally found Josh and you helped us make it through our rough patches, you were there for me through both deployments to Iraq even though you were the one at war and I was still in the comfort of my own home, the tattoo parlor when we got matching tattoos, you were there at my wedding, you were there through all my crap. I hope I was there for you as much as you were for me. You always brought me down to earth when my hot-headed self would get a little crazy. You took good care of me. I was telling Josh the other day how I never worried about you when y'all were in Iraq. I always worried about Josh, but I always just knew you were going to be fine. You were larger than life. It's still unbelievable that we lost you. Afghanistan is a shitty country. I hate that that's where you took your last breath. I still have dreams about you. Usually they consist of some weird circumstances where I am trying to take care of you (during a hurricane). I'm not much into dream analyzation, but I assume it is my need to control what happens in life. I couldn't control the reality of your life, so in my dreams I try. I can't imagine how hard it is for Nicole and Addy or for your parents. We were just friends and I'm still devastated by your absence. But I know where you are today. I find so much comfort in that. Your dad said some really great stuff at church yesterday and it was really helpful for my healing to hear how he and Andrea have been healing. We can find joy and happiness in the fact that we will all be reunited with you again one day. I look at Addy growing up through pictures and she looks just like you. I wish I could just sit and hug her. She is the closest thing to you left on this earth. We had a family picnic on Saturday so we could all get together and remember you in our own ways. We rented one of those moonwalk waterslides and all I could think about was when Wally bought one of those and we busted it really late at night. And since Wal-Mart was 24 hours, Wally went and bought another one :) We were some crazy kids. Your dad and Andrea came to the picnic. I love getting to sit and talk with him because he has your laugh. He laughs and I am taken back into all of the wonderful memories with you. I miss you every day. I think about you all the time. Rest in peace, my friend. I will see you again someday.

The night will go on, my little windmill.

no rest for the weary.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

i don't remember having this much trouble during my third trimester with ella. i slept pretty well throughout most of that pregnancy. i remember having a little insomnia at the beginning of my third trimester, but it was short lived. it helped because we slept in our guest bed the last few months because a 4" pillowtop is REALLY comfortable when you don't have a huge belly weighing you down. i sleep on the couch most nights and get 3 to 4 hours of sleep per night. tonight it's two hours. but it will all be worth it. i know lots of people tell you "don't wish your pregnancy away, the baby is quiet in there". well, the longer it takes to get here is the longer it takes to get through that screaming baby phase. so instead of avoiding the inevitable, let's just get this thing started! i'm definitely not one of those people who will drink caster oil, but i do hope it will start soon. i go in on wednesday for my first exam in a while. maybe the doctor will tell me that it will be sooner rather than later. my doctor is definitely a "let's not get your hopes up" kind of guy so we will see.....

okay, i'm done complaining now. :)

I had the best day with you today.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

I have 26 days to go until Sadie makes her debut. Or 31 days if she's anything like her sister. I've been feeling the heat of my deadline approaching so quickly and I am so worried about not getting to be the best mom to Ella that I can be. Again, it's one of those things where you have no idea what it's going to be like with more than one kid until you have more than one kid. So most of my fears may be irrational, but they may not be. I just don't know yet. So I decided that Ella and I were going to have a fun day today. On Tuesday, I had a couple of appointments, so I was trying to decide what to do on Thursday. My options were to go swimming at the Angleton Rec Center or go to the zoo. Well one of my appointments was to get my legs waxed on Tuesday and they told me I'd have to come back next week. With that said, I didn't feel comfortable getting into a bathing suit. Not that the hairy legs are the only thing that makes me dread a bathing suit....but I was willing to forgo the embarrassment of the gigantic belly protruding from me and take her swimming. The legs just squashed that deal. So we got up early this morning and headed to the zoo. It wasn't until I exited Macgregor in Houston that I saw about 10 school buses ahead of me and then realized that the cartoons this morning that Ella was watching were about recycling and cleaning up trash. So I put two and two together and realized that today was Earth Day. Oh my gosh. It was nuts. Ella wasn't nearly as put out with the hundreds upon hundreds of kids at the zoo today as I was. Maybe it's the fact that I can't squeeze through tight spaces anymore and I'm completely awkward when moving around and dodging crazy little kids that seem more like bowling balls headed right for me. Or maybe it's the fact that I really just don't like being swallowed up by a crowd of 3' tall people. Regardless, Ella had a wonderful time and that's all that mattered. We walked the zoo, although I completely avoided the Children's Zoo. We walked by and it was a mad house, so I turned around before Ella saw too much. We ate pizza, cotton candy, and bought a really cool animal puzzle at the gift shop. All in all it was a great zoo trip. We also went and rode the train around Hermann Park. That was definitely Ella's favorite part. Next time, we'll just skip the zoo and go for a ride on the train and play in the park instead. As we were riding on the train, Ella looked up at me and asked me if I was having fun. At that moment, tears started streaming from my eyes. I have such a sweet and beautiful angel for a daughter. She makes my life mean so much more.

Happy Earth Day Ella! I had the best day with you today!

Having no idea that it was Earth Day when we got dressed this morning, I feel like her shirt was still very appropriate.

Checking out the meerkats.

Time for lunch!

and cotton candy...

Waiting for the train to arrive:

riding the train

she waved at everybody we passed!

and this was about 10 minutes into our drive home. she was exhausted!

Does that whole mad season got ya down?

Thursday, April 15, 2010

April 9th would have been Jon's 26th birthday. It's surreal to think that he will never age past 25. I think about him all the time. I'll hear a blink 182 song or a jack johnson song in the car and it brings me to tears every time. There was a new rob thomas song that i heard a few months back and i thought to myself, jon won't ever get to love this song. We spent countless hours sharing headphones listening to our cd players on the 10 hour drive to church camp during the summers or riding in "the wave" to colorado for ski trips. You could almost always guarantee it was a matchbox 20 cd playing. I don't know why it's music that reminds me so much of jon, but i can't listen to the radio without hearing one that reminds me of him. I like it, though, because it means i'll always have reminders of one of my greatest friends.

who brought that?

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Ella has always had to know who everyone around her was. Anytime she'd see someone, she'd ask "who's that?" and I'd tell her. She has always needed to know everyone's names. She loves to know their names and she's also a big fan of nicknames. She thinks that calling my mom and dad Davey-baby and Patty-Wagon is absolutely hilarious. I think so too. She calls her big cousin Alley by her nickname, Alleycat. Or Alleygator or even Alleycatgator. I'm usually Paigey, skittles, or paigerator. Josh is joshy, of course. But lately, now that she has everyone's names and nicknames figured out, she's taken a new approach. I remember my brothers going through the "why" stage with their kids. Maybe we're not there yet, or maybe she doesn't care why. She just needs to know who. So she'll see something (food at the grocery store, her easter basket, a sippy cup, etc) and ask me "who brought that?" It's too cute. I love listening to her figure out the world and being able to help her along the way with all of her questions. She's a smart kid. Oh, and the unprompted please's and thank you's are also music to my ears.

And on the potty training front, Ella's still doing great! We haven't been back to diapers since my last update. It's wonderful. At first I thought potty training would be a big headache and I just avoided it. It was so much easier to put her in a diaper for 3 to 4 hours instead of taking her to the potty every 30 minutes. Since Ella finally figured it out, I've realized that potty training is a piece of cake. She just got it one day and she can hold it for 3 hours usually and will tell me when she needs to go. The little boys potty training at school had a lot to do with her getting movtivated to do it too, I'm sure. But mostly, I think it just finally clicked for her. If she's playing and having fun, I have to remind her to go and I always make her go before we leave the house. A soaked car seat does not sound like an experience I want to have. I'm sure I will soon enough, but I'm going to avoid that as long as possible. *UPDATE - this has already happened...and it wasn't as awful as I anticipated.* I have heard about regression, but hopefully the next six weeks of successful potty training will make the regression minimal and easy to bounce back from, if she regresses at all. But I definitely love this new potty trained kid of mine. She's a blessing, a handful and a sweet, affectionate kid. It's great to get to new places, but it also comes with new sets of challenges to figure out. On to the next one........

two girls

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

i was putting ella down for bed tonight and i always tell her that she's my most favoritest girl in the entire world and she's the most beautiful girl in the world. then i realized that once sadie gets here, i won't be able to say that to ella anymore. it's strange to think about loving TWO girls the same. i'm sure i'll get it all figured out the moment i meet sadie, but it's still strange to think about.

we went to subway tonight and ella ate an entire 6" ham sandwich, a bag of chips, and most of my tea. i think they must starve her at school.....

Dare I say it? (take 2)

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Ella is potty trained! We just started day 5 in only panties and we've only had one accident, which was our fault. She was having so much fun playing and didn't want to stop and we didn't make her stop to go. We're still learning too! :) She is doing great! On Wednesday, Ella's teacher told us to send her in panties on Friday because she never has accidents at school and is always in the same pull-up that we left her in. So we did and she hasn't worn a diaper since (except for sleeping). She even made it through a $160 shopping trip to Wal-Mart! I'm so proud of my little girl. Every time I look at her, she looks so much older and more experienced. We are in a REALLY good phase right now. I could not be enjoying her more. She is so polite, she doesn't fight me about everything, and she spends hardly any time in time-out anymore. She's helpful and is always in a good mood. She's starting to become more outgoing and she says some ridiculously cute things. Last night, we all went for a walk and she looks up at us out of the blue and says "I love Spencer". He's a boy in her class. Last week, he busted her lip and this week she loves him. Spring is definitely in the air!

I started this post this morning and since then we went on a strawberry picking adventure at Froberg's in Alvin. She had so much fun. When we got to Froberg's, she had to pee so we asked one of the workers where the restroom was. She directed us to the porta-potty. Yay. A newly potty-trained-ish toddler in a porta-potty. Well, to put it nicely, it was absolutely disgusting in there. Ella immediately started freaking out because she did not want to tee tee in it. But i covered the entire room in toilet paper and she was screaming. But she peed! Once we were done, we walked out and she told me "Mommy, I didn't like that. It was scary." I know, baby, I know. So, five days in and she's already had to brave a porta-potty. Go Ella! And I should mention that I have over four pounds of delicious strawberries at my house. Anyone need some?!? Most of them already have a bite taken out of them. :)

We also went and had lunch with Josh at Joe's BBQ. Well, while Ella was eating her grilled cheese, she peed in her chair....and boy do I mean peed. I should have known better and asked her to go to the bathroom, but we were waiting on Josh to get there and I didn't want to leave all of the food on the table. Now I know what the priority is when it comes to lunch and potty training. Definitely potty. Our waitress got a good tip. :)

This series of pictures shows pretty much what went on during the strawberry picking:
This was our first attempt, but silly me didn't think to call ahead and ask if we could pick strawberries in the rain.....we ended up getting to go see Grandad at work instead!
(I just realized as I uploaded these pictures that I put her in the exact same shirt as last week when we tried the first time. Apparently I think that shirt is very strawberry-picking appropriate)
Finding just the right strawberry.

Inspecting her strawberry. She learned to pick the pretty red ones, not the green ones.

This is what happened when I told her she couldn't take a bite out of every strawberry she picked.

Showing off her loot!

park family update

well, it's coming up on summer and i've overcommitted myself...yet again! :) let's see, i have my 10 year class reunion coming up in August. so we've been busy planning since last summer and things are really starting to take shape. but that means there is a lot more that has to be done. i think back to the day i decided to run for senior class president and didn't realize that i would have more going on in my life in ten years than just high school. silly teenager....

my due date is may 18th. so i'm now seven months pregnant, and feeling every bit of it. i have easy pregnancies, though. i was talking to my sister in law, heather, the other day and we were talking about being pregnant. now she and tracy had difficult pregnancies! so i really can't complain too much. but i find myself running out of steam pretty quickly these days and it's getting harder for me to keep up with ella and all of the other things going on. and if i could just catch a full night's sleep...

we've also started our 4th on Main planning again. I think this year, because i'm pregnant, i've got a "work smarter, not harder" mindset kicking in. josh and i were talking about the 4th of july and i was really looking forward to it because we had such a great time with ella last year. he gently reminded me that this year will be muuuuuuuch different. he'll be on ella-duty while i'm on baby duty. i don't think that leaves me much time for actually helping out. i'm not sure a 6 week old can make it outside at the park all day and all evening for the fireworks. we'll see!

we are in the process of selling our house. we've gotten most of the hard work done. we fixed all of the minor repairs that needed fixing (well, most of them) and we're just waiting on a buyer. it is a little difficult to leave the house every morning as if someone were going to go in and look around at anytime. mostly difficult because a two year old lives there. although josh would say that i'm messier than the two year old. i'll still blame it on her :) i've NEVER made my bed since i moved out of my parents' house. so i've been having to make my bed the past two weeks every morning. i hate it. i don't think i'll ever like having to make my bed. i figured i'd sooner or later grow up and enjoy doing it, but that still hasn't happened!

josh is playing football these days. at the age where a lot of people retire, josh, dusty, and drew decided to START playing football! we went to our first game the other night and it was fun. ella made it until halftime before she wanted to go home to go to sleep. they lost pretty badly, but it was fun to go cheer them on.

OH, and I'm having a baby in MAY! I've got 55 days to go!!!!! I'm not ready....... :)

life is crazy, to say the least, right now. but i'm enjoying every moment of it. ella has gotten so fun lately. the other morning, she woke up at about 3am and i could hear her through the monitor singing where is thumbkin and abc's, twinkle, twinkle, pretty much every song she knows. and after about 20 minutes, she fell asleep again. it was wild, but so much fun to listen to in the middle of the night. i love her conversations she has with me and i love how smart she is. we talk about so much and she really just blows me away. i just wish she'd let me fix her hair........

a beautiful soul

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

My earthly mind cannot comprehend heaven and what Layla could possibly be doing at this very moment. My heart is heavy, yet I know that this remarkable little girl made such an impact for the kingdom of heaven. I wish it was a battle that she did not have to fight. It is so sad to know that she was so young and endured so much. There is a sense of relief because I know that she is now healed. She has shed her broken earthly body and gained something far greater than we could ever imagine. Yet I am so sad that her time on earth has come to an end. I never met her, but she turned my world upside down. Through all of my tears, I am so grateful for the lessons that she taught me as a mother and as a person. Thank you Layla Grace.

Please pray for the Marsh family.

one of the best days

Thursday, February 4, 2010

is my husband's birthday. that was the day that the good Lord put my best friend on this planet. it's almost more important that MY birthday :) I seriously found the perfect person for me when we started dating seven years ago. shortly after we got married, we were sitting on the couch watching TV together and we were holding hands (yes, that was back when we held hands for no reason and it was even inconvenient to do so) and i felt his fingers twitching on the backs of my hands. i asked him what he was doing and he reluctantly told me that he was typing out the words from the show we were watching. you may think that's a crazy OCD habit, but the funny thing is that I've been doing that very same thing since i was a freshman in high school and took a typing class. i mean, how weird is it that two people meet, get married, and then realize that they have the same really weird habit?! it obviously means that we were meant to be :) obviously. or that we didn't spend NEARLY enough time together before our "i do's".

my life has been so much better because of you, joshy. i love you with all of my heart and your birthday is one of my all-time favorite days.


a few laughs

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

we've been having some fun lately. here are a few pictures that make me laugh:

ella's robe was a birthday present from aunt tricia and piper. you can say that it's a hit over here around bathtime! just look at that smile. ahhh, baby love.

after josh and ella left one morning i was getting ready for work and saw a flash above my head in the closet. there have been bat problems in my neighbors townhouse, so i freaked a little in my head. then i realized what it was.....

we are also putting our house on the market this month. so we've been doing some minor repairs to get things ready. here is daddy and his little helper

and last, i came downstairs one day to find that ella had done a little remodeling in her doll house...

My family cracks me up. It may be a dull life to some, but I wouldn't trade it for the world!

Layla Grace

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

After becoming a mother, I learned that I had never before been so vulnerable. During the early stages of my marriage, I had to deal with wondering if I would ever see my husband again. Saying goodbye to him the morning he left for Iraq was excruciating. I remember because the Christmas right before he left for Iraq, it was 2004 and it snowed on Christmas Eve. I remember thinking that day that this was the best it was ever going to get for us. I just knew he wouldn't make it back from that deployment. Call me a glass half empty kind of girl, but that was the way I interpreted life at the time. It's funny because just recently I was talking to my dad and that Christmas came up and my dad said to me that when it snowed on Christmas Eve, he just knew at that moment that the next year for Josh was going to be okay. I've worried for his life a lot. A whole lot. But it doesn't even compare to the fear I have over my daughter. I'm working on letting go of the fear. I fear for her safety and her health. If something happened to Josh, I would have been devastated but I would have gotten through it. If something ever happened to Ella, I honestly don't think my heart could take it. She is a piece of me. She is part of my heart and part of my soul. She is the reason that I want to be a better person. She deserves the best from me.

I came across this blog the other day and it really put all of my needs and wants into perspective. It is actually a blog on a blog that I follow. I don't know these people at all, but the moment I clicked on that link and read the first post, I absolutely could not control my emotions. I wanted to close the tab. I wanted to stop reading. I could not handle the despair that this family is going through right at this very second. But I realized that while I didn't want to read this, this woman didn't want to LIVE this. I am so thankful for the health of my baby girl, but I am guilty that this woman has to feel this ultimate pain. And I think about Mary watching Jesus suffer. I don't know how mothers can go through such torture. Kill me, give me cancer, but spare my child. It hit me that all of the things that I go through that seem hard are nothing compared to what this woman is going through. I'm sure she'd take a million fits at the doctor's office for more time with her. She'd endure a million fights with her husband if it meant more time. I am heartbroken for this family. I urge you all to pray without ceasing for Layla. I pray that God gives her peace during her final months. I pray that God gives that mother and father the strenth and the grace needed to get through it. Please join me in prayer for Layla Grace.

Jill's Wedding!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Ella got to be in her first wedding in November. One of my best friends, Jill, got married to a really amazing guy named Matt. I'm so happy for them! I was a little nervous when Jill asked if Ella would be her flower girl. Ella is definitely good at throwing a major fit. If Ella doesn't want to do it, Ella doesn't do it. So luckily Jill understood that everything might not go according to plan. Well, she ending up doing pretty good. Our bridesmaid dresses had pockets in them, which is where i stored the candy. She walked down the aisle and ran up to Daddy when she saw him on the second row. It was too cute.

Josh and Ella spent a lot of time at the hotel while the bridesmaids helped Jill with some last minute preparations. Look at how nice she is to share her "nogurt" with hippo.
She really did look just like an angel.