Saturday, January 25, 2014

Friday, January 24, 2014

fun at Mimi's salon

Okay, so Mimi brought her salon to us. My mom made a surprise trip down to see us on one of my dad's many trips down for work. With the slower pace of not having anything on the to-do list, we decided the girls and I could use hair-cuts. For Hannah, it was her first. Her hair has been slow to grow and most days is wild and could easily be cut into a mullet. My dad always suggests that we cut her hair around her ears. Very funny dad. I didn't take good before and after pictures, but the pictures do show how much fun it was to have Mimi here for a couple of days.

Wearing some of daddy's old undershirts and getting to sit on the kitchen table makes this doubly fun.

 Hannah was not a fan of having Mimi cut her hair :) Mimi is more patient than I am, hence why we invited Mimi to bring her salon to us!

the spunky middle one

This girl is hilarious. Her eyes are always telling a story. Her mind is always busy trying to figure out puzzles around her. She is her big sister's best friend and dare I say archenemy. That's probably a harsh word, but having to live in harmony is teaching both girls many lessons about sharing, forgiveness and grace. They would be very bored without each other! And with the frigid weather lately, we've been stuck indoors. I'm so thankful that they are happy to keep each other busy!

These are my two favorite pictures of Miss Hannah that I took recently. She is most definitely 2.5. Her vocabulary is blossoming. She sings almost all of the time, and she talks literally until she falls asleep at night.

Almost two weeks ago, we decided to charge into potty training. I woke up one day and said to myself, "No more excuses!" I had been preparing for lots of battles, particularly since Hannah will fight me on pretty much anything if I give her the opportunity. I have given up on nap time. Instead, she has quiet room time (quiet is something that is a daily lesson!). Rodney and I worked very hard to make potty training a positive experience, and we haven't had any battles. She is even waking up dry in the morning and is now having very few accidents. It is a blessing to now only have one in diapers!

So thankful for the laughter (AND the tears - they stretch me and mold me...) that this girl brings into my life.  :)

Tabitha is 8 months

Tabitha really enjoys solid foods now and opens her mouth like a little hungry bird in anticipation! I am so thankful for this development. She is still not crawling but starting to get closer to the "all fours" position and occasionally end up on her tummy from a crawling position.

She just woke up from her nap and is calling for me, so I'll keep this short. She didn't nap well today, but overall (fingers crossed) is sleeping better. She still wakes between 3 and 4am, but this is a welcome improvement.

My snuggler is calling for me, so I need to run. Love this girl so much.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

special time

When family lives half way around the world, it's easy to remember that any time with them is special time. How quickly we can take for granted the family that we have that live close by.

My brother and Helen are at a stage in life that allows them to give my children lots of undivided attention, and my children loved every moment. At one point up in Milwaukee, Uncle Dan was dragging them around the house on a sled.

Making a gingerbread house is even more fun with an Aunt who lets you eat lots of frosting!

The girls ate popcorn and green smoothies for dinner on New Year's Eve. The adults waited to eat take out Japanese food and play games after bedtime. Yum! Getting takeout after the girls go to bed is a good in house double-date night.

I'm not sure when the next time will be when we'll get to see them. So thankful for the time that we did have and praying for them as they make decisions about their future.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

all bundled up

Thankfully, we had some "warmer" days before the onslaught of  some of the coldest winter days I've ever experienced. Thankfully, it helped keep us all from becoming too stir crazy!

And Daddy took the kids for Jeep rides through the woods. Benton was very impressed with Rodney's "monster truck", as he called it. I'm told he had a dream about the Jeep in the middle of the night, sitting up in bed saying, "Monster Truck!" before falling back to sleep. 

Harms Family Christmas

The Harms family all came to us to celebrate Christmas after the New Year. It was a lovely gift just to get to stay in our own home. After many years of being road weary after the holidays, it felt particularly good to sleep in our own beds. And the cousins enjoyed getting to see each other only a short time after Thanksgiving. Our children have grown up a lot since our first holidays spent together. We laugh now about the crying, sicknesses, bickering, and midnight trips in the car to get a baby to sleep. The 16 and 20 hour treks through the middle of the night are behind as now! Praise God!