Friday, December 17, 2010

Playing Outside

So it was 80 degrees yesterday and now it's 50. Gotta love this Houston weather. Yesterday, I finished giving final exams and the girls had their last day of school, so today we are home and we are happy!

Tater-tot makes me so proud... there have been many times in her 3.5 years that I have had random people approach me and say "Are you Tatum's mom?". I proudly say, "Yes." And they usually say something like, "I love Tatum! She is the sweetest, funniest, happiest little girl!". And I agree. She is a joyful blessing to our family.
Avery is a very responsible and loving big sister. She is also becoming very independent and sometimes I can't believe she is only 5... it seems like she is 13.

Laney is the pride and joy of her two big sisters. They are both so enamored with her and want her near them all the time. They fight over who gets to sit next to her and who gets to help wipe her nose when she has snot. Precious.
8 days until Christmas! We can hardly wait!

Sunday, December 12, 2010

What we've been up to...

well, back in august, our women's ministry coordinator at our church asked me if i would be interested in facilitating a women's bible study later on this fall. i have no idea why she asked me. i don't mean that to sound falsely humble. there are a ton of talented, Godly women in our church who have actual experience doing things like that, and i have never done it, so i really don't know what made her think i would be a good candidate for it, but for whatever reason, she asked me. so i talked to brian about it and we prayed about. he really encouraged me and said something like "you're always preaching & teaching us here at home, i think you were born to do something like this." so i told her i would do it, without knowing what on earth i was getting myself into.

so on wednesday nights at our church, the girls do AWANA, which i am so excited about. avery & tatum are both memorizing Scripture each week and laney gets loved on in the nursery. brian does the men's bible study and i do the women's bible study. we did a Motherwise study for the first part of the fall semester, which was led by a very talented and energetic speaker. So at the beginning of November, that study was over and it was time to start the study i was to facilitate.

so for the past 5 weeks, i have been studying and preparing like nothing i have ever done before. it has consumed pretty much all my "free" time, hence my long seperation from my blog. i don't know if it's supposed to be this much work to prepare a weekly bible study. i have told brian all along that i enjoy the studying and researching and i enjoy the leading of the Holy Spirit while i'm typing up notes on whatever the topic is each week. it has been a learning experience in many ways, which i am very thankful for, but i must admit, i am super glad to have a month off from our regular wednesday night routine so i can decompress from all of it.

if i have learned anything through this first month of leading a bible study, i have learned how very little i have to offer. i am pretty much the least creative, least motivating, driest, emptiest, weakest person i have ever met. i have always known i needed Him, but i have experienced that desperate need for Him more through this experience than i have in a long time. so that is where i've been. trying out something new. not sure if it's a good fit for me. but nevertheless, thankful to have this opportunity to try it out.

so besides all that, we are excited to meet our first nephew in less than a week. brian's youngest brother brandon, and his new wife adriana, are expecting their baby boy to arrive sometime this week. if he doesn't come on his own by thursday, i think they will be induced on thursday. not sure about his name yet, but they are liking Matthew right now, which I of course love, since it is my oldest brother's name! his middle name will be Ray because brandon is a little bit crazy about stevie ray vaughn.

speaking of baby boys, our baby boy is still doing great! he is not making me feel too uncomfortable yet. i did have to switch to the granny-panties a few weeks ago and i have already outgrown about half of my maternity shirts. i do have cankles pretty much every evening and i never know each day if i'll be able to wear my rings or not. his sweet little kicks make me so happy and thankful that he is alive and well inside me.

we got rid of laney's paci over the thanksgiving break. it wasn't nearly as bad as i imagined. she cried a little bit for about the first 3-4 days each time i put her down without it, but that was it. after a few days, she didn't act like she missed it. now our goal over the christmas break is to get her out of the crib and into the girls' bedroom. our lofty goal is for all three of them to share one room. we have a bunk bed in their room with a twin bed over a full bed. avery is on top in the twin bed and we are hoping tatum & laney can share the full bed. we do have a back up plan, but i'm really hoping it works. we are excited to start turning the nursery into a sportsy room for our son. i have never seen a man so excited to shop online for nursery bedding as i was to see brian get on looking for baby boy crib sets. he is being very particular about color pallettes and level of coolness of embroidered baseball gloves on quilts, etc. it's pretty funny.

here he is with our two little ones.
the one above is tatum (second row with the two white bows in her hair) singing "hush little doggie with your bow-wow-wow. baby Jesus is sleeping now." and below is avery singing "super duper christmas" at their school christmas pageant last week. it was very cute, and they both did a great job.

the highlight of this weekend, amongst a work christmas party, a sunday school christmas party, a golf tournament fundraiser and "road to Bethlehem" at church this morning, was that we got to keep Avery's kindergarten class bunny, Patches, all weekend! she has been counting down since September waiting her turn to bring Patches home. forget counting down to christmas, she has been counting down to Patches' visit. so this was finally the weekend. we have enjoyed our little furry friend's visit, but i will be inwardly happy to return her to the kindergarten classroom tomorrow. and finally sweep the kitchen floor of all the rabbit hay, wood shavings, etc.
(and yes, i do brush my children's hair daily. tatum & laney just woke up from their naps in this picture. :))

Last weekend, we went back to SA because my mom got us tickets to see the Nutcracker ballet! it was so much fun for the girls and they even got their picture with the Sugarplum Fairy and the man in the white tights, that i really did not want a picture of, but i would've felt rude telling him we just wanted the Sugarplum fairy in the picture. i guess he does deserve some respect for dancing and walking around all night in tight white tights! i will never understand. but anyway, the girls love the storybook of the nutcracker so it was very exciting for them to see all the characters in real life dancing on the stage.

only 4.5 days of school left. "cinderella man" for two days and finals for the other 2.5 days. so thankful to have almost reached the end of this semester! good night!