Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Ray LaMontagne

(Posting and Pictures from our 20-hour weekend road trip and Emily & Franklin's beautiful wedding coming soon... meanwhile, push PLAY and enjoy this!)

Despite still being in recovery from our road trip this past weekend, Larry and I dusted off our dancing shoes and headed out on a date night last night. Well, there wasn't actually any dancing, but definitely a lot of toe-tapping... We saw Ray LaMontagne (la-mon-tay {I think}) at the Alabama Theater and it was a really great show. Larry found Ray a while ago and has brought him into our home for us all to enjoy. The song above (granted it plays!), You are the Best Thing, is the official daddy-daughter song of our household. Ray has a very easy, smooth sound- kinda slow rock, bluesy, acoustical... He's definitely on the rise; the show apparently sold out really quick. Look him up and enjoy him in your own home!
Thanks to Nana for watching the tired kiddos for us!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Orphan & Widow

We recently had some pictures taken by Lauren Webber, of Orphan & Widow. She has started a ministry to use her wonderful gift of photography, and other's gifts and talents, to raise awareness and support for the poverished. She had a fundraiser day at Botanical Gardens where we did our photoshoot and all funds she collected went to support a missionary headed to West Africa with a medical team to serve an unreached tribe. It's a really neat ministry she's started and an incredible way to share her God-given talent!
Thank you, Lauren! All of the pictures are beautiful!
These are just a few of my many favorites (along with our new title pictures):

I love the combination of bruised shins & skinned knees, and soft, chubby legrolls!

This is Larry's favorite of Lincoln- he says Lincoln has his hands up in a boxing pose, ready to fight someone to get out of the basket!

This is my favorite of Georiga (I think!)- it just captures her easygoing happiness with that little smile, her foot pulled up on the chair and her arms crossed...

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Picnic at the Park

We took advantage of the beautiful weather to get out and have a picnic at Helena's Ampitheater park. It's beautiful down there- nice shade trees, right on the creek with the sound of the waterfall in the background, handy picnic tables, and you get to wave at the train as it goes by. I was also hoping getting out in the sunshine would help clear our runny noses- which continue to drag on! I've never been more ready to leave winter behind!
Hope you're having a fun, easy day too!
Georgia helping Lincoln with his sun protection.

Oh- how I LOVE this sweet, happy baby boy!

And this beautiful, independant, adventurous little girl!

Soon, we were all ready for naps!

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Happy Easter

Hope you all had a wonderful Easter, and shared with our joy in knowing we have a Savior in Jesus, who died on the cross yet rose again three days later, all so my sins would be covered by His blood, the sacrifice of His life would pay for any and all of my wrongdoings, and that I can have a relationship with the God of the Universe. WOW!! God is SO good to us!!

We enjoyed an amazing Easter service at our church- the music lifted my heart and my hands, and included a version of Ol' Rugged Cross that gave me chills (good chills!). Our paster did an original dramatic monologue from the perspective of Barrabas- he was the convicted murderer that the Jews choose to free, and instead crucify Jesus. It was such a unique perspective since we are all like Barrabas- Jesus died in our place, although He was innocent and we are not. It was too good to not share- hear it here (at posting time the sermon was not yet online, but should be probably on Mon).

At home we enjoyed some Easter fun- the bunny left some goodies in our basket, which Georgia enjoyed. (ok- we've ALL been enjoying some of the sweeter goodies!) And Lincoln helped me with some adorable Easter pictures. (yes- I stuffed my baby boy in a basket that was probably a bit too small- or maybe my baby boy is a bit too big- either way it's still cute!). And Saturday we all enjoyed Georgia & Lincoln's first Egg hunt with our Sunday school class. Georgia did great once she figured out she was there to collect eggs, not play on the swings, and she liked it even more when she figured out there was candy in the eggs- she came to me drooling colors from shoving a starburst in her mouth!

Hope you had a fun and meaningful Easter weekend too!

Friday, April 10, 2009

Easter Egg Suncatchers

Well, mommy has hurt her back {again} (if anyone has suggestions on how to strengthen your back, please share! 2 pregnancies have done me in!)- so we were hanging around at home today. So I was looking for entertainment and found this seemingly easy craft that I thought Georgia and I could do- Easter Egg Suncatchers. Basically all it takes is gluing tissue paper to paper and cutting it into egg-shapes. They even suggest using contact paper, which would eeliminate the mess of glue. But who keeps contact paper laying around? Glue, I have.
So Georgia tore the tissue paper, then painted the glue onto card stock and wax paper, and we put the tissue scraps down. It was looking very pretty! See...

So, I know you're waiting for the "But, then"... well, what you can't see in my pictures is Lincoln learning to 'self-sooth' in the next room. And by that I mean screaming his head off. I debated adding a picture of his cherry-red, tear-streaked little face to this, but resisted. And Georgia's attention span lasted about long enough to take these pictures and get glue in her hair. So after she'd had a nice post-craft bath and they were both safely in bed napping, I cut out the eggs and hung them. See, so pretty...

All in all, a fun, manageable craft (if your baby isn't screaming the whole time) and you could cut out any pretty shapes. The ones we did on wax paper are fun because the sun shines thru them- the "Suncatcher" part! Happy crafting to you!

Monday, April 6, 2009

Lincoln: 4 Months

Dear Lincoln,
With all the ongoing festivities surrounding your sister's 2-year birthday last week, I am a bit late with your 4-month letter. But you enjoyed the partying as well, so I don't think you mind! Here's what's going on with you at the ripe ol' age of 4 months:
~I'm not sure of your actual weight, but on our home scale you weigh in at about 14.5 pounds. You're definitely getting bigger- my arms can't hold you as long as my heart wishes anymore!
~Mommy finished pumping at about 3.5 months and we finished our last bag of frozen breastmilk at the end of the month, so you're all-formula now. And you haven't missed a beat- or, rather, a gulp! You eat 6 ounces, 5 times a day, with the last around 9:30pm.
Before I upset any Grammies- this is a picture of you in full-blown laughter!

~Which leads us to sleeping- you go to bed around 9:30-10pm, and get up 7:30-8am. Yea!! You also take about 3 regular naps per day- morning, lunchtime, & afternoon, and sometimes a quick 30 min dinner-siesta if it's been a long day. You like to have your beauty sleep!
Roll, roll, rolling Lincoln!

~On to the fun stuff: You have mastered rolling from back to belly, but forgot that you already know how to roll from belly to back. So I lay you on the floor, you roll to your belly, then, after a few mins, get mad that you're on your belly! But all this belly time is really making your arms strong and you like to push up and watch us. You are also somehow scooting, b/c I often find you several feet from where I originally laid you!

~You're definitely a thumb-sucker, but also have found a new treat- toes! Oooo, the cutest baby trick of them all!! There's something about watching a little baby grab those toes with unpredictable fingers, pull them to your sweet little mouth, giving full view of chubby leg-rolls and tushy, and watching you happily suck that tiny big toe that melts hearts!!
Video: Yummy Toes!!

~I love that you have an easy smile and are more than willing to share it most anytime. Those easy smiles earn you so many kisses! You also have a great little laugh, which we hear most when daddy is tickling you. Although, mommy is learning those tickle spots too so I can hear your laughs all day!

~You continue to learn and make new noises, all steps towards future communication. Your latest sound is like "blah", which is cute b/c you stick your tongue out when doing it. You also like to "bpppt" with your lips, and blow bubbles.

~You have two new playspots: the Bumpo seat and the "Jazzerciser". You do a great job sitting in the Bumpo, but get bored in it quickly. We just got the "Jazzerciser" out last weekend, and you seem to like it. You're a bit young to fully grasp all it offers, but like looking at and trying to grab all the toys. You like to stand and use your strong legs, so this is a great place to practice that! (If you don't speak "hipp", the "jazzerciser" is what larry nicknamed the excersaucer)
I love the concentration on your face as you figure out how to spin that toy!

~I keep telling daddy you are going to be our noisy child- let's just say you've got a good set of lungs! When you get mad or upset, you YELL! Not just fuss or cry, but yell as loud as you can! Even when you're just "talking" and making noises, the noises get louder and louder. It's funny when it's not, well, noisy!!

I just love this baby stage where you're so soft, squishy & cuddly, and are learning to laugh & play. Where something as simple as toes can be an exciting treat, and mommy gets smiles for changing your diaper or giggles from changing your clothes. You love watching us, especially your big sister, who is full-speed entertainment, and Bernie- I think his black and white coat catches your eye! As we prepare to celebrate your first Easter, we promise to teach you about the saving grace of our risen Savior and pray you will know His love for yourself on day! WE love you, sweet baby boy!
love, Mommy

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Georgia: Two Years

Georgia Kate,
I was looking back and can't believe the last "letter" I posted for you was at One and a half- so much has happened since then! And it amazed me how much you've changed and grown in 6 months! It happens right before my eyes, every day, and it's so neat to see how much you've learned. It's hard to make a list, but here are some highlights:

~I suppose the biggest change is that you are now a Big Sister, a role you have filled very naturally. It makes you seem so much bigger to us now that we have a baby in the house to compare you to. You have been so sweet to Lincoln and accepted your new role as best as I could ask. You give him lots of sweet kisses and love to run into his room in the morning saying "Hi Lincoln (kink-on), Hi Hi!!" I am very proud of what a great big sister you are learning to be!

~You are learning so many new words, and how to put those words together, even into short sentences. You have learned that you are "Georgia" (jaja) and will say "Georgia cookies" if you want something like cookies or "Georgia book" to identify that it's your book. I still often have to translate for you, but you are talking so much now and it's exciting to see you learn how to use your new words!

~It amazes me what a terrible eater you still are! I thought you might have grown an appetite by now! The main problem is that you don't like to try new things (much like your daddy) and mommy grows tired of making new foods for you to try, only to throw them away... though I still persist! So you eat a lot of the few things you eat- right now your fav. foods are peanut butter, bananas, teddy grahams, yogurt, grapes and cheese- still no meat or veggies. (Though I did get you to eat a few zucchini muffins- I can be sneaky with the veggies!)

~Despite this, you still are growing! We don't have your official measurements, since you haven't been to your 2-year checkup yet, but on our home scale you are almost 27 lbs. You are also definitely tall- taller than most of your 2-year old friends. You have a long torso, so you usually end up baring your midriff in t-shirts!

~You hair has also grown a lot! It hangs past your shoulders now and I can pull it into a ponytail. It's hard to believe you had such dark hair as an infant looking at your blond head now! It is fine and wispy and always fighting mommy's attempts to keep it in pigtails or bows. You still have never had a haircut- why cut it? It's finally getting long enough to pull it all back!

~I can see your creativity more and more in your playtime- you pretend- cook, make & serve tea, take care of your baby doll, read aloud, write and color, and you love to pretend-leave. You pack up your bag with your water cup, books, toys, put your baby in her car seat, give everyone & everything goodbye kisses and tell us Bye Bye! The whole process can take 15+ mins! It's a great way to get kisses from you! Another favorite game is playing doggie- you ruff ruff, carry things in your mouth and even give doggie-kisses: licks on the cheek! (yuck!) Since your bday, you're loving your new tricycle and driving your Jeep!

~It may be born of jealousy from all the lap-time your brother gets, but you have started seeking out cuddle-time, from anyone. You definitely seek out snuggles from daddy & I daily, which we gladly grant. You sometimes bring books with you, or just sit and lay your head against us. Even though we are sometimes busy or have our hands full, we will always love snuggles from our little girl!

~You have fully moved into "big girl" status with your big girl room and big girl bed. You've done pretty well with both, though you still have trouble settling INTO your bed and we often find you asleep OUT OF bed, somewhere on the floor- lately under your bed! Last night we even found you sleeping halfway under your bed, with lamby & pillow, and your pj's off!

~You can say your numbers 1 thru 10, though you usually skip "1" and lately have been saying "7, 18, 9"- I think you must have learned #18 from Sesame Street and think it belongs in there somehow! You can say them all by yourself, but only when you want to- not when we want to show you off! You can also say the alphabet, though you need more prompting to get all the way thru. And we have to hurry thru "E" or you start singing EIEIO!

~Speaking of singing, you still love music, singing and dancing. You often go to the computer and ask for Jump Jump, one of your favorite songs. You like to sing songs that have hand motions; some of our favs are: Itsy Bitsy spider, Patty Cake, Wheels on the Bus, and we're currently learning If I Were a Butterfly. Your favorite song right now is the little song daddy made up in the car one day to keep you occupied: "I love my daddy! (mommy, Lincoln, milk, etc) My daddy loves me!" It's so sweet when you start singing it randomly! You also love daddy's guitars and playing "drums".

I probably could go on and on (yes- even more so than I already have!) with all the fun things you are doing! But just know how much daddy & I love going thru each of these stages with you, watching you become such a wonderful little girl. We will continue to teach you, discipline you, guide you and encourage you, and always pray for you.
I also want you to know that while I truly love having your little brother join our family, I will always cherish the 20 months you and I had together before he came. It was a special time, "girl bonding", and I am so thankful I got to have so much one-on-one time with you. You were such a wonderful baby, and a perfect introduction to my life as a mom. I just want you to know how special that time together was, and that I will always strive to continue to have moments like that time with you in our future!
I love you so much, my sweet two-year-old!
love, Mommy
Looking Back....
3 months
1 Year
1 and a Half