catching up, moving on.

Ever just feel like life has really knocked you down flat on your face?

I'll be the first to admit I can have a little pity party and feel sad and let it get the best of me...but geez, it's time to get it together and get back to living life again, right?

First of all, I hope you all had a nice Christmas. I had a nice little post set to go for Christmas Eve, but we had somehing go awry with the computer and well, obviously that post never made it.  So after three days in the shop, we're back, up and running with Windows7 and I am learning to make the most of not knowing how to work my computer again.

And second, to those of you who have had to deal with me lately (or even just read this blog, which has been - quite frankly - um, well, depressing), I am sorry.  The gloom of sickness (what I believe had to be the flu or something very very bad) is starting to dissapear and I can talk again after losing my voice from coughing so hard for two weeks straight.  I have not been very much fun lately. At all.  In fact, during that week of time where I was up in the middle of the night with a very sick baby, taking care of a needy, whiny toddler, traveling back and forth from the pediatrician, caring for sick doggies and feeling like I'd been run over by a semi, well, I think that was an all-time low for me. 

It is amazing how much being sick can really put a damper on your Christmas plans, even when you try to make the most of it.  Logan was obsessed with Christmas lights and we wanted more than anything to take him on a nice long car ride to see them, so I sucked it up and we drove around for a couple of hours on the 23rd.  We missed watching our "regular" Christmas movies, but it was worth it to see the magic in his eyes.

Christmas Eve we spent with my family and I experienced the real magic of Santa Claus.  That night Logan and I placed the cookies we made (this year Santa got slice and bake cookies, something I would not have done otherwise, but I dont think Santa was complaining).  We also left a plate of reindeer food on the front porch and then read the Christmas Story.  Although it was close to midnight, we still had to coax Logan to sleep and remind him several times that Santa could not come if he was awake.  And so, Ryan were up until 1:30 and I felt like I was going to pass out at any moment, but oh, the magic of it all....so worth it.

The next morning we were up at 8 with Lauren and waited in our bed with her for Logan to get up.  At 9 we heard him excitedly whisper to himself as he ran into the living room.  Spying on him from the kitchen was the highlight of my Christmas.  He was so amazed that Santa ate his cookies and checked out the front door to see if the reindeer ate his carrots and celery.  And of course, they did.  When he finally realized I was behind him he said to me "Mama! Dey ate all dat food!"  He later told us he did hear Santa that night as he was on the roof.  Magic.

We are celebrating our Christmas with Ryan's family tomorrow, and I am excited for that because this time around I feel much more like myself (and let's be honest, it's never a bad thing to get to extend the Christmas season)...but more than anything I am thrilled that I get to kiss on my sweet nephew, something I could not have even considered doing last week.

So now...now we are all healing and moving on.  It has certainly been a challenging couple of weeks. Cody was at the vet on Monday and it was discovered he has developed diabetes.  His blood sugar was off the charts and the vet told us it was a miracle he was not worse off than he had been (we knew something was up last week when he started drinking water like he was a camel).  After two days with the vet, he's much better and we are giving him insulin shots twice a day.  Crazy. 

And today...today is New Year's Eve, already!!!!  Look at the year that this has been and how fast it has flown by...it is a reminder to me that everything has a time and a season and when you feel overwhelmed you just have to hang in there.  I think about how in just eight short years we built a home, got married, traveled to places we always wanted to go, faced a debilitating illness, flash floods, leaky ceilings in a hurricane, a broken a/c, an overflowing toilet, a dead refridgerator/freezer (on Christmas Eve, losing all our food), multiple faulty computer issues (losing tons of photos and memories), a busted water heater, snakes in the backyard, being stranded with a car that won't start, a dog with seizures, a dog with diabetes, multiple trips to the ER and countless home repairs.  We have had two beautiful, healthy, children.  We have paid off two cars, changed jobs multiple times, and experienced financial highs and lows.  We have had expensive, romantic dinners, weekend getaways, and gifts "just because".  There were nights were we couldn't eat a hot meal, sleep in our own bed, or stop worrying over what was wrong with our babies.  There are moments we are able to have "me" time and some moments where we (I) had to lock ourselves in the bathroom for two seconds of quiet.  There have been tears of joy and tears of sorrrow and dozens of other disasters and highlights that have faded into the background.  All of this....this is life...this is what it is all about. 

So as I start the new year, I have no real resolution, I just hope that I can remember to embrace every moment of what life has to offer.  Complain less.  Cherish those "little" things.  Hold on for the ride, but let go every now and then when I need to.  Kiss the kids every chance I get, remind my husband just how handsome he looks each day when he walks out the door.  Call the parents more.  Visit the grandparents more.  Eat less, walk more.  Spend less, give time.  Look at things in a new light.  Let go of what I cannot change.  Embrace who I am.  Cherish our health.  Thank God for these blessings. 

So here is to the new year...To looking forward....and every now and then, to looking back.

Happy New Year!


it's been one of those weeks...
the kind where you really can't help but to wonder where your sanity went
between taking care of a very sick, feverish, clingy Logan
and a teething, cranky, needy Lauren
and taking both of said needy, cranky children to the pediatrician (in the rain no less)
and having to explain to Logan why he can't go to his Christmas party or last two days at pre-school
and holding both kids for extended periods of time while they whined and cried (yes, one on each shoulder)
and watching the same six Christmas specials over and over and over and over
and sanitizing and cleaning to prevent anyone else from getting sick
while running a humidifier in each room and going through more Tylenol and laundry and hand sanitizer than I thought humanly possible
and going to the post office and waiting an hour just to make sure my Christmas cards were okay to mail with the right postage - only to have most of them returned to me yesterday marked "additional .20 postage needed"...
and making ANOTHER visit to the pediatrician (in the rain, again) yesterday after Lauren woke up two days in a row with her eyes so swollen she could barely open them and high temp
only to find out not only is she teething but she also has a double ear infection and a virus/bug which is causing her eyes to be so full of gunk they are swelling shut
and so then braving the pharmacy AGAIN where they told me her prescription would be approximately $1,695.72....
all while feeling pretty darn crappy myself
oh, and having Cadie have another seizure
and a husband who has worked late every night this week
(oh and did I mention he had a work function last night?)

yes, this is the kind of week where going to Publix for groceries on Thursday night was a luxury
because I called my husband at 7:00 and begged him
"please...save me from the madness."
and he did
and I shopped in peace
with my headphones on, listening to Coldplay
and for a moment all was right with the world

until the next day when the insanity continued in this infirmary

yes, that's right. 

So my parents came over for a couple of hours to help last night
and Lauren threw up on every imaginable surface, including my mom from head to toe.

but today
Today is different.
I am determined that things will get better
and we will get well
it may take a while, but we will get there
this is just life
just one of the many times I have to stop and be grateful...
that although it seems too much at times,
this too shall pass.

And someday I will be just like my mom
and be able to laugh when my grandchild throws up on me and every imaginable surface
because I have been there
and I survived (Oh Gracious Heavenly Father, I survived!!!!!!!!!)
and looking back I will remember
that these days are fleeting...and in their own crazy, messed up kind of way
they are precious
because they are a reminder that my kids have changed my life
and they have challenged me
to be stronger, better, smarter, and even a little more patient
and some day they will be grown and I will miss the crazy days of early parenthood
and I will miss the way the smelled after a bath
and the way they clung to me when they were sick

and maybe I will even miss the crazy days of dragging them both to the pediatrician together
while Logan kicks the crap out of the stool he's sitting on and sings 'SANTA CLAUS IS COMIN' TO MA HOWSE!" while I try to discuss important medical things with the doctor and Lauren screams and cries from the trauma of having her ears poked 37 times...

or maybe not.

but I will miss some of it...most of it.

So here's to better days...and remembering the bad so I can cherish the good...

Hope you all have a nice, healthy, happy weekend.


under the weather...

Nothing exciting to report, but just a little documentation of the fun we are having at our house. 

I had to take both kids to the pediatrician yesterday.  Logan has been running a high fever on and off since the weekend and actually stopped making Christmas cookies with me on Monday to go lay down for a nap, so I knew something was really wrong (he is a kid who stops for nothing sleep-related).  Lauren was acting fine but coughing really bad at night to the point where she choked and threw up, which about gave me a heart attack.

So as it turns out, Logan has a double ear infection.  He's on antibiotics and should be well by the weekend (or so we hope).  I was feeling very very glad I took him to the doctor yesterday because last night he had a nosebleed and threw up, so I think I would have been in a panic if I didnt know what was going on.  And as for Lauren, well, our baby girl is getting in four teeth at the same time - two on the top and two on the bottom.  Apparently her gums are so swollen it was causing pressure in the back of her throat when she went down at night, causing the coughing fits.  Go figure.

So here we are, all doped up on antibiotics and Tylenol and hoping for a better tomorrow.  I keep thinking about how glad I am it is still nine days until Christmas and not the same fiasco I had last year with everything falling apart on Christmas Eve :)

Hope you all are happy and healthy.



and so...

Lauren met Santa today for the first time. 

Surprisingly, she was neither impressed or scared...she simply wanted her present or she was going to take Logan's with her.

Logan, however, ran right up to Santa when it was his turn and told him all about his Christmas wishes for cars, cars and more cars.

They had a quiet conversation.  The only thing I heard Logan say was as Santa handed him his present he asked "Dis is a car!?!"

I thought maybe Lauren wasn't scared of Santa because she didn't really see him (Ryan carefully placed her in Santa's lap facing me/the camera), but at one point she looked right up at him and yanked on his beard.   I did get a picture, but it was taken just as she blinked so you dont really get the effect.

and Santa gave each of them a present.  You will never guess what Logan got...

Lauren got a cute little stuffed elephant and her favorite part of it was the tag, which kept making its way into her mouth. 

I finally just took the whole tag off and of course THAT was what made her cry. 
{That child loves anything simple...a travel wipes case, any kind of paper, things that are round and now, as we have learned, tags.}


the table is set...

(There is nothing quite like flowers on the table and a fresh Christmas tree in the house)...

So the decorations are out, the yard is lit up, the Christmas village is all set up and plugged in and you can almost feel magic in the air.

There is nothing quite like Christmas.

And man, let me tell you, three year olds are what Christmas is all about. It has been fun doing Christmas before, but never quite like this. I dont think Logan could be any more excited about anything Christmas-related than he is right now.  This kid loves any kind of light/ornament/decoration/Christmas song (his current favorites: "Rockin' Christmas Tree (Rocking Around the Christmas Tree) and "Santa's Comin' to Town" (Santa Clause is Coming to Town).  He sings Christmas songs non-stop, wants Christmas music playing in his room 24/7, and the other night he cried on the way home because we couldn't drive to the neighborhood down the street to look at their lights (as we had done the night before).  Today he has been begging me to make "gingerbread mens"...he had to settle for chocolate chip but we will be making more cookies next week.

We spent last night driving around looking at Christmas lights - me, mom, dad, Logan and Lauren, all piled up in my dad's truck and enjoying the fact that it was actually chilly outside and we could roll down the windows as we drove past houses of lights and decorations.

I did some last minute shopping this afternoon while Ryan hung out with Logan and watched Christmas specials (my goal is to be done or almost completely done by two weeks from Christmas.  Ryan on the other hand just started his shopping last night.  We could not be more different.)

Going to the annual Santa Party tomorrow (pretty much a family tradition, it is held at the law firm where I used to work - Santa comes down the staircase, lets each kid sit on his lap for a chat and hands out presents).  Logan has been talking non-stop about getting to chat with Santa and the chance to tell him "Thank you for comin' to ma howse." *(I swear he thinks that song was written for him).

Hope you all have a great weekend.



Reason #2,374 we use a professional photographer...

The other night I decided to get some pictures of the kids in their Christmas pajamas since I typically dont get one - there is just too much going on (and no kid in their right mind will stop for a picture when there are presents under the tree).  Apparently I had lost my mind when I assumed this was possible.

This was the first picture out of about two hundred that they both were looking at the camera:

...and the shot immediately following (after Logan squeezed her a little too hard - and trust me, she is tough)

Here's hoping your Christmas photos are a little more successful...



Feeling grateful today as I am reminded of the things around me...
For the gift of life
For two precious, healthy children
For two dogs who love us unconditionally
For a roof over my head (and warm blankets in cold weather)
For food to eat and water to drink
For a husband who supports me in every sense of the word
For family that embraces me
For friends who encourage me
and for a God who saved me.

Life is good.


Lauren "talking"

Two video posts in a row...man, you guys are lucky

So Lauren sings/chirps/babbles/whatever you want to call it ALL.THE.TIME...but put a camera in her face and she suddenly turns shy. So, this is broken up into two parts...part one she talks to Cadie, part two she talks to anyone who will listen...

for Kalen

...he was supposed to talk about Christmas, but all he wanted to talk about was you....

We miss you.  Hope this makes you smile :)


seven months

Where is the time going baby girl?

You are growing up so fast.
You are sitting up and rolling and trying to get from point A to point B as best you can.
You are learning to make new sounds and noises and love your own voice....
not to mention you adore the pretty little baby looking back at you in the mirror.

You are sweet, but you can kick like no other and bat at everything in sight.
You love peek-a-boo and anything that makes noise or lights up.
You would do anything to get a taste of some real food.
You are strong and tough...we know God made you that way so you could handle Logan :)
You are funny and giggly.
You are a delight. 

Happy seven months sweet Lauren.


something just feels right...

With the smell of a fresh Christmas tree in the house....

...and it is even better when you turn out the lights and take it all in...

oh, how I love our crazy, funky, cluttered tree and every memory hanging from its branches...