Saturday, May 31, 2008

The next 24 hours...

are SO VERY crucial for Jody and Andy. As I type this, they are rising in Dakar and heading out on the journey of a lifetime. Things are different this time. So please continue to pray for their safety and their family.

Friday, May 30, 2008

The first step is admitting you have a problem

Today was the last day of school.
Brigg was a wee bit excited.

He finished his chocolate chocolate chip muffin and busted in to some serious baseball card sorting.
We also decided to give Paul his father's day gift a little early.
Lani and Ayla just couldn't wait until mid-June.
I made the mistake of letting Nalani see it
and she wouldn't stop asking about it until we gave it to him.
Ayla, well she just couldn't stop looking at Lani!

So here comes the part where I admit I have a problem.
I have a problem.
I am competetive.
I said it.
It really is a bad deal.
I hate to lose.
And what's really sad is that I'm not very good at anything.
So I tend to lose a lot.
It makes me mad.
I do realize I need to work on this, but I can't seem to control it.

And I found out tonight that it really has not gotten better over the years.
I was so mad when Paul was kicking my butt at Guitar Hero III.
I already have plans to stay up all night and go through the tutorials.
HA! There are some good points to being unable to sleep!!
Fortunately for me, Paul requires several hours of sleep.
Hee hee hee.

And as you can see.
I am afraid Brigg has inherited my competetive gene.
He wasn't too pleased when Paul did well either.
Oh my.
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Thursday, May 29, 2008


SERIOUSLY! I just found out they opened a Chipotle in IOWA CITY!!!!
I think I know what I'm doing tomorrow to celebrate Brigg's last day of school!!
WooHoo!!!!!!!!!!!! (and it looks like one is "Coming Soon" to West Des Moines in Valley West!)

Just finished...

The Creative Family (see books on sidebar). A bit extreme, but I got some pretty great ideas from it. Now I just need to learn how to knit, sew and live off the land. That should keep me busy for the summer!
"Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited to all we now know and understand, while imagination embraces the entire world, and all there ever will be to know and understand." (Albert Einstein)

Bike Race

Every Memorial Day weekend there is a huge bike race at the park behind our house. This was the first year we attended. We covered ourselves in bug repelant (which seemed to have no effect on the bugs at all) and headed over to the park.

The kids had notebooks and took notes on who was in first, second and third. Too cute.

I just thought this picture was funny. Typical Lani trying to explain something to Brigg and him plugging his ears, refusing to acknowledge her. Oh my...

And Brigg cheered them along on their final lap to the finish line...

It was a great time and I'm sure we'll make a point to attend again next year!
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Lisa's Birthday

They are one day apart in age. They truly act like they are twins. Funny how they "get" eachother.

The kids ran and played like maniacs.

Happy birthday to Lisa. There is no way I could have hand-picked a better sister-in-law.
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My boys words needed.
simply love them.
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Tuesday, May 27, 2008

I'm here.

Has it seriously been 3 days since I last posted?!? Wow. It's been a little nuts around here. We have been without hot water in our upstairs (where our only working shower is) for about a month now. I had decided that hot water was a luxury. Well, instead of trying to take care of the water heater upstairs right away, Paul decided to try and fix our main floor shower. This turned out to be a bad idea. We had serious leakage going on and had to cut off all water to the whole house until it was fixed. This lasted 2 or 3 days. And might I just say that WATER is a necessity in the house hold. We really couldn't be home. So we've been spending a lot of time at my mom and dad's and all over town. I actually wandered around the neighborhood on Saturday with a pan looking for a neighbor at home who could fill it for me so I could boil pasta. I know, it's a sad sad story.
As of this evening, we are up and running. Still no hot water upstairs, but we have a running, hot shower on the main level. AND fully-functioning faucets on our bathtub. This is a big deal! I left my camera at our memorial day BBQ yesterday and didn't have a chance to get it today. Maybe tomorrow. So no pictures until then. A whole lotta words about nothing!! :)

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Ayla Ayla

Ayla trying to distract me from feeding her...

And once I do get some food in there, this is where it sits until she spits it all out...smiling the whole time.

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Friday, May 23, 2008


Visa approval came this morning. The Landers will be going to pick up their precious babies as soon as they can coordinate all flights, appointments, etc. GREAT NEWS GOING INTO THE WEEKEND!!!! Thank you to all who prayed and supported and sent well wishes their way! Can we all say together, "AMEN!"

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

New books, Poisonous Bottles and Preschool

Well I have some new books. (See "My Library" on my sidebar)
New books=Little sleep.
Fortunately, I do not require much sleep.
Unfortunately I cannot just read one book at a time. I have to absorb a little from each one every night. So my mind spins long after I turn off the lights. Good and bad.

I'm trying to get Ayla to take a bottle. I'm a complete failure at this. I swore I would give her a bottle each and every day from the day we brought her home and I have not. I found she seems to have a milk allergy, so we switched to soy. She acts as if it is poison. So I tried to put breastmilk in a bottle tonight and guess what, she thinks that is poison as well. Apparently it has nothing to do with the fluid, only the vehicle in which it is contained. We are still working on the cereal feedings. I think she's getting a little bit better. There seemed to be about 25% less gagging today. Hey, that's progress at least.

Today was Nalani's last day of her first year of preschool! YAY! I'm ready for it to be over. She is really really going to miss her teachers, but I've got her signed up for some pretty great things this summer, so I think she'll survive. Brigg was totally mad this morning. He informed me that this would also be his last day of school. In Brigg's little world EQUAL=FAIR. We have this discussion often. Apparently he doesn't quite get my idea of "fair does not mean equal". So we'll continue to work on that.

Off to bed...anxious to hit my overflowing nightstand!

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Just Pray

I was asleep.

For a couple hours.

Couldn't keep my eyes opened as I lay in bed reading.

But I was jolted awake with these images floating




Jody and Andy heard more from Dakar
and they are scared that they may not get to bring their babies home.
I am simply asking that if you are a praying person,
to please pray for this family and their future.
They have touched, held and fell in love with these children.
They cannot imagine their lives without them in it.
Please just pray.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Rough Day

Those three shots this morning were obviously rough on little Ayla...
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A family affair

We put the garden in on Sunday.
I use the term "we" loosely.

Paul was out there about 1.5 hours before me and stayed a while after I left.
I nurse.
That's my excuse.

And Lani played with her froggy in a little "pool" she made for him.

When all was said and done, we put in zucchini, yellow squash, cucumbers, green peppers, red peppers, jalapenos, chilis, suger snap peas, string beans, yellow "candy" onions, red onions, roma tomatoes, grape tomatoes, cherry tomatoes and big boy tomatoes. I still need to put in the peaches and cream corn. But after spending 5 hours there, we were ready to call it a day.

Looking forward to enjoying the fruits of our labor!
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6 months

Is it even possible that Ayla is 6 months old already?! I can't believe it! She had her doctor's appointment today...shots and all. She weighed in at a whooping 15 pounds 12 ounces. And she's 25 inches long. That's the 50th percentile for both. The child is not sitting up yet despite all our efforts to force that this last week before the appointment. The doctor looked her over and tested her and smiled. She said Ayla was definitely strong enough, she just doesn't want to. Hmmm. What does that mean for our future? Also Ayla won't eat anything but breastmilk. Totally refuses cereal. Purses her lips and bats at the spoon. If I do get some in there, she spits it all over. Good times. The recommendation? Keep trying. Same time every day. Mix it with breastmilk instead of formula. Apparently she needs to start eating something other than my milk. Alrighty then.
Shots weren't too bad this time. She cried, but it was more of a ticked-off cry. She stopped 6 seconds later and fell asleep as soon as I put her in her car seat. OH! and when the doctor shined her little light in Ayla's mouth, she found that a bottom tooth had cut through! Her first tooth!! She said we should be seeing it in the next few days. Brigg will be so mad. He and Ayla were having a contest to see who would get/lose a tooth first. Guess Ayla wins. Poor Brigg.
So that's it. Happy. Healthy. Growing. Must be doing something right! :)
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Sunday, May 18, 2008

One more post for the day

I realize I am "over-posting" tonight, but I have been a little behind so oh well.
After the show, Lani was pretty tired.
She knows right were to snuggle in.
And she can often time be found there more than once at day. (at least on days Paul isn't working all day!)
And well, this is just funny. Here is the little dancing princess with her hair still done up from the recital yesterday. Paul and I put the garden in today. Planted everything! The big kids came out with us and Lani got her hands on a frog and didn't put him down for 3 hours.
This is what I love about her. She can be a little girly girl one minute and the next minute she is digging in the dirt for worms and playing with frogs.
She found quite possibly the largest earthworm I have ever seen in my life. She was in heaven!
And with that, we'll call it a day. So looking forward to the week ahead. The last day of preschool is Wednesday and it will be nice to have Nalani home all day every day. She is such a joy to be around and well, it's just too quiet when she is gone in the mornings!

The Big Day

These pics weren't actually from the big day because cameras weren't allowed. They were from dress rehearsal on Friday night.
Lani truly loved every second of the last three days. (I, on the other hand could have done without the late night stress-induced fight between Paul and I on Friday, but we'll save that story for another day!)
She takes her dancing very seriously. When I mentioned not being in dance next year I think she about had heart failure. So we'll do it again.
But I'm pretty sure it just won't get any sweeter than this...

View this montage created at One True Media
Lani's 2008 Ballet Routine

And Nana and Papa S.

(hmmmm...this looks like my dad and i about 25 years ago...a familiar look)

And of course, Nana and Papa S wouldn't have missed the big day either. Mom made the cute little bouquet of flowers for Nalani. And Lani loved them! She just loved being surrounded by so many people she loves!
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