Friday, October 31, 2014

Quick 5

Ready to take bets on what time Joya will get up on the morning of the time change?  My guess is 5:00.

1.  Poor Joya was sick all week.  She told me she was cold at church on Saturday night while we were eating during the worship team potluck.  I told her to jump up and down to warm up.  She did.  But when we got home, it turned out she had a fever.  She proceeded to have fevers until Wednesday afternoon.  Her little eyes looked so tired, and she was So. Whiny.  We don't know what was wrong with her.  I took her in a for a throat culture on Tuesday, since her voice sounded a little garbled to me, but it was negative.  So she must have just had a virus or something.  So far the rest of us seem unscathed.  And Joya is finally back to her chipper self.

2.  We have one of those big sectioned baby gates that we've used to barricade Bria in the living room.  She has full reign of the living room and hall, but it's just been easier to keep her out of the kitchen and definitely away from the basement.  But she has figured out how to break out.  She did it right behind my back yesterday, when I was helping Alaina with her homework.  She was so quiet about it that I didn't notice until I turned around and saw the gate had been pushed out of the way.  She had made it all the way downstairs without a peep.  I think she's part ninja.

3.  We are now a smart phone family!  Well, almost.  We're in the process of transferring our numbers to the phones, and as soon as that is done we will be 100% a smart phone family.  Our friend Amy, who has made our life better in countless ways already, introduced us to Republic Wireless, which is going to cut our cell phone bill in half.  It's the perfect plan for us, since it's mostly based over wifi, and since we're mostly around wifi.  And the phones themselves were quite reasonable.  Obviously we got the cheapest ones they were offering, but it's still a smart phone and it will work just fine for us.  Thanks Amy!

4. I planted a raspberry bush in our garden box in May of last year.  Everything I've ever read said that it will probably take at least three years before it starts producing berries.  But lo and behold, during this last week of October, almost 17 months after planting it, it is spouting out a few berries.  I had no idea it would even produce berries this late in October.  There aren't many; just a few.  Joya and I each ate one and they tasted normal.  Maybe we'll be bursting at the seams with raspberries next year.

5.  Tomorrow I'm going to my first meal prep party.  You know, where you prep 10 meals in one sitting for your freezer with a bunch of other ladies?  I've always wondered about these.  And the shopping for it wasn't as bad as I thought.  I'll let you know how it goes.

Goodbye October!

Friday, October 24, 2014

Quick 5

Busy week = pictorial Quick 5.

1.  Fun in the corn maze (and by fun, I mean as much fun as you can have being lost in a corn maze with a crying fussing baby and a fussing 4 year old.)
Early in the maze, right before the crying
Alaina loved finding all the corn

2.  Super Bria!  She ran up and down the hall saying "Zoom! Zoom!"
3.  Does the Tooth Fairy charge extra if she has to come to a house twice in one month?
Teeth are just falling out of her head
4. Throwback!  The girls at three months:
5.   Have a great week!

Friday, October 17, 2014

Quick 5

Lee likes birthdays because during birthday week it's like Dessertpalooza around here.

1.  On Sunday we celebrated Joya's birthday with the cousins and grandparents (and Aunt Jamie.)  Joya had tons of fun opening her presents and sharing them with her cousins.  Her little mind was blown by all the tulle and glitter that she received.  Her presents all suited her to a T. 
 2.  Joya, of her own free will and with no prompting from anyone, chose birthday pie instead of birthday cake this year.  I have no idea where she came up with that idea, but it is one that we all enjoyed immensely.  I made a cherry pie and a chocolate brownie pudding pie, and yes, she had a piece of both at her party.

3.  On Monday we went to Red Robin for Joya's free birthday meal.  Right after we ordered she asked where the cheerleaders were.  I double checked with the server and then told her they'd come later.  She was so looking forward to the birthday chant.  So next time you hear that obnoxious song at a restaurant just pretend it's for a four year old who is soaking it up.

4.  Joya has worn at least three different dress up dresses each day since her party.  But she's not the only one who has caught on to Dress Up Fever.  Bria is starting the Anything Sisters Do I Must Do Too phase, and Joya is happy to dress her up like a little doll.
 5.  So ends a busy birthday week.  My little Joya is now a 4-year-old.

Catch ya on the flip side!

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Happy 4th Birthday Joya!

Joya, you are 4 years old today!  We are amazed at your personality every day.  It's so different and wonderful.  You asked for birthday pie instead of birthday cake, for goodness' sake.  Where did you come up with that idea?  It was a good one.  You love to dress in pretty dresses and you love to do everything that Alaina is doing.  Your proudest moment this year was when you were able to play outside by yourself for the first time.  And going to Cubbies.  You love being a Cubbie.  And you love to tell jokes.

We pray that you learn to love Jesus.  We pray that you will hate sin and get caught when you're guilty.  We pray that you will learn to love others, and that you will always be aware of those around you and come up with ways that you can help them out.  We pray that you will grow in compassion and obedience this year, and that your joyful spirit is a blessing to everyone.

We love you so much, Joya Shae!  Happy Birthday!

Mom, Dad, Alaina & Bria

Friday, October 10, 2014

Quick 5

That glorious night when you use your electric blanket for the first time.

1.  A couple of weeks ago Alaina went to her first school friend birthday party.  It was at Skate City, and I had emailed the mom ahead of time to find out if she expected parents to stay with their kid or leave, because I just don't really know the protocol.  She emailed back and said either would be fine, so I left the choice up to Alaina.  She took a day to think about it and then decided that I should leave.  So I took her to the party, got her skates and dragged her back to where her friends were, because she'd never been on skates before and those things are nuts.  The mom assured me she would be fine, and they had one of those skating trainers that look like walkers that Alaina could use.  I was actually pretty nervous about leaving her in such a new situation, but she insisted I leave.  So I did.  Then I came back 2 hours later and she had had the time of her life.  But I also quickly figured out that every other parent had stayed.  So I was the deadbeat mom who dumped her kid off at a party.  I promise the mom said it was fine, but why did everyone else stay then?  Anyway, Alaina loved it so much.  She's already begun negotiations to get her birthday party there someday.

2.  Our apple season is slowing down.  I haven't heard an apple bang on our roof in the middle of the night in over a week.  The funniest thing to me about having apple trees is how deformed home grown apples are.  They all resemble Quasimodo in some way, and we often have to cut off a good third of it to get to the parts of the apple that don't have weird bug or bird bites or brown spots.  But there was this one apple that grew right outside our bedroom window that we could tell was special.  This one was perfectly formed.  It looked like one you would buy in the store.  We let it get as ripe as we could and then I picked it before anything bad could happen.  It was as beautiful all the way around as we had dreamed.  I fed it to Joya on a day where she was feeling sad and needed something special as a pick-me-up.
3. Joya has begun to draw people.  She's my avid colorer and loves loves loves fresh clean coloring pages.  She's quite good at it.  But just this week she started free drawing people.  I love how people look when preschoolers draw them. 
She draws two eyes, two nostrils and a smile.  She gave me eyelashes to show that I'm a girl.  Most of her people look more like pigs or cows, but it's a good start.

4.  This week I got a call from Compassion International, telling me that our girl Rhoda from the Philippines is no longer part of the program.  I knew it was coming.  She turned 18 in May, and I had emailed to find out when and how that would work.  The guy emailed back saying I'd have six months notice.  But apparently Rhoda got her associates degree in computers and got a job, so she just abruptly left.  I'm so proud of her, and it's all bittersweet.  I'd been her sponsor for 12 years.  I picked her when Compassion came to Grace my sophomore year in college.  I know we weren't the best sponsors; I only managed to write her once or twice a year.  But now she's all grown up.  The lady from Compassion said I could send her one final letter, so I plan on doing that as soon as I get a current family picture to send with her.  She also asked if we'd like to sponsor another little girl from the Philippines who is three years old.  I said of course.  We should be getting her info soon.  It's like a chapter of my life has closed.

5.  Bria's No Socks policy has gone from bad to worse.  It now includes No Pants, and if she could figure it out she would add No Shirt to the list.  The girl likes to strip down, and I can't stop it.  Actually, in all honesty, she's been a real bear this week, so at one point I took off her pants for her, and she was happy as a clam for a little while.  I'm a little concerned since we're moving into cooler weather.  Why couldn't she have gone through this phase when it was hot out?  And how long will this phase last anyway?  It feels like only a matter of time before she strips down in public.

Up next week: celebrating Joya's 4th birthday!  There will be pie.  :)

Friday, October 3, 2014

Quick 5

That time of year when we have every single coat that we own out, because you need a heavy one in the morning, and either the medium or light one depending on the day. 

1.  Our first proud moment of the week: Bria eats her first bowl of ramen.
 She developed her taste for ramen while simultaneously developing her mooching skills, since she would stand right next to Lee and chirp like a little bird every time he ate ramen.  I finally gave her her own bowl, which had an added bonus to it: she could practice using her fork.  She's good at getting the fork full of food to her mouth, but she can't really get the food on the fork.  I load up the fork, she puts it in her mouth and then hands it back to me to do the whole thing over again.  But with ramen the noodles are little and slightly sticky, so she can do it herself. 

2.  When the girls brush their teeth in the morning we are all crammed in the bathroom together.  I still brush Joya's teeth for her, and then she spits into the toilet.  After watching this routine for weeks, Bria has figured out what you should do when the toilet lid is up: spit.  So Joya bends over to spit and so does Bria.  Watching a 19 month old spit into a toilet is pretty darn cute.

3.  It's been awhile, but this week I got to participate in the Most Treasured Parenting Moment of cleaning barf out of a crib in the middle of the night.  As far as I know, Bria hasn't even had a fever in her 19 months of life, but in the wee hours of Wednesday morning I heard her barfing in her crib.  I got her cleaned up and the bed cleaned up, and tried not to wish horrible things on some of the moms in my MOPS group who were all talking about how their kids have never barfed in bed.  How lucky for them.  My girls are bed barfers.  It's something I've had to accept.

4.  Joya has made it a full week without sneaking any food or candy.  She proudly tells me each morning that she did not sneak anything.  Today she can finally have dessert again. 
5.  And the biggest surprise news of the week:
Alaina lost her first tooth!  This was a shock, because I didn't even know it was loose enough to come out.  Apparently she did the ol' apple routine at school yesterday, eating an apple slice that her teacher gave her, and the tooth popped right out.  She got into the van all secret like and said, "Mom!  I have a surprise for you.  I'll show you at home."  I'm a little bummed that I didn't get to witness the whole extraction process.  I LOVED pulling my teeth out as a kid, and I was looking forward to helping my girls.  I know they have plenty of teeth left, but I wish I had known that her tooth was that loose.  Anyway, the tooth fairy was completely caught off guard, but still managed to leave a golden dollar coin in Alaina's fancy new tooth pillow.

Have a glorious weekend!