Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Birthday Celebration

Last night we celebrated Sarah's birthday along with two girls from church (Emilee and Hadassah) that had birthdays in the last couple of weeks. Benjy (Emilee's brother) gave me a night off from cooking and made a delicious Italian meal of linguine with two types of sauce, a big salad, and Italian bread. Then for dessert we had chocolate cake.

Ruth loves to eat chocolate (or "allah" as she calls it). Here she is with Benjy.

And then she wanted to pose for her picture again!

Play-Doh Creations

Play-Doh has been a popular activity lately at our house. (One reason for this is the crazy weather!) Sarah made me a delicious meal the other day...
...and then this is how Ruth plays with Play-Doh.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Sarah's Adjudications Honor Recital

Yesterday Sarah played in the adjudications honor recital. Here is a video of her piece, "Baba-Yaga".

*Click on the title of the song for the link to the video.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Baby Update - 38.5 Weeks

I am just a teeny bit discouraged this morning (ok, I'm really discouraged). A week and a half ago at the doctor, I was a "fingertip" dilated and 20% effaced. Today I expected some change, especially with all of the contractions I am having and the pain that has developed in my pelvis. However, there is absolutely no change at all. (With all of my other pregnancies, I've been 2-3 cm dilated by 38/39 weeks.) On top of that, I have a UTI. Lovely!

I know with my head that God is in control and this baby will be born in HIS timing. But my heart is aching. I need to get my head and heart aligned where they need to be. Besides, every day this baby continues growing and maturing inside of me...the healthier and stronger she will be. I see the doctor again next Thursday and then will start NSTs (non-stress tests) after that to monitor baby.

Why am I telling you this? I have no idea. Maybe because it's helped to type it out. I know many of you have experienced what I am going through right now and that helps, too...just knowing I'm not the oddball. :)

Well, enough wallowing in my sorrow. I'm off to clean the house and love on my kids some extra today.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Sarah's 10th Birthday Getaway

Recently Sarah and I had a night away for her 10th birthday. It was very relaxing and a great chance for me to talk to her a bit and spoil her lots before the baby arrives. Here are some highlights from our trip!

Browsing the books at Barnes and Nobles:

Dinner at the Cheesecake Factory!

Lunch at PF Changs (these green beans are a favorite to both of us):

Fun building at the Lego store:

Seeing Dr. Seuss' "The Lorax":

Getting a pedicure:

Comfy beds at the Westin!

Sarah's Adjudication Preparatory Recital

On Sunday, March 4th, Sarah played in an adjudication preparatory recital. She played "To A Wild Rose" by Edward MacDowell. This is one of the pieces that she played at her adjudications this past week. We are excited that she was also chosen to play in the adjudication honors recital, which will take place on Sunday, March 18th. We'll post that video next week!

Note: Click on the title of the song to listen to the video on YouTube.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

How They're Getting Ready

Ruth is climbing in and out of the baby's carseat...

...and Rachel says she's expecting twins!

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Blogging for Adoption to Bulgaria

My brother and his wife are on a journey to adopt siblings from Bulgaria. They are a little over a third of the way with their fundraising. As many of you know, this can be a long process and one that holds many emotional ups and downs. In an effort to help get their name "out there", I want to just tell you a little bit about their story and how you can help if you are able.

Tim and Cindy live in Alaska and have two children. The biggest reason that Tim and Cindy desire to adopt is because they were adopted into God's family! They said that "physical adoption is a daily living picture of this spiritual reality. It is a constant reminder to our family and others of the grace and mercy of God and His love for the lost and care for the fatherless."

You can read more about their journey at their blog: Our Adoption Journey to Bulgaria.

Here are three specific ways that you can help them raise money for the adoption if you feel led to do so.

1) If you drink coffee, I highly suggest Just Love Coffee. They have many different roasts and blends. Our favorite is African Skies. You have the option to make a one-time purchase or to have a monthly subscription. If you have a subscription, you are less likely to run out of coffee! By the way, the shipping is the same for one bag or two, so I suggest that you buy two bags at a time.

2) Garth and I have found our new favorite t-shirts. These shirts are super comfortable and we wear them as often as we can get by with (and as often as they're clean!). Mine fits me even when I'm pregnant, which is an added bonus. They are high quality, soft shirts. Contact Tim & Cindy on their blog to find out which sizes and colors are still available.

3) Tim and Cindy are a 147 Million Orphans fundraising family as well. Anything that you purchase in the online store gives a large percentage back directly to Tim and Cindy's adoption fund. There are t-shirts, jewelry, books, mugs, and such available this way.

They are also working on a couple more fundraising options and those will go up on their blog as soon as they're available. Please feel free to subscribe to their blog so that you get their updates.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Getting Ready for Baby

With less than 4 weeks until baby is due, I figured I'd better get busy and get things ready! Because we still use the playpen for Ruth (or visitors that have babies), we figured it would be better to get either a cradle or another playpen/bassinet for this little one. I love how this cradle fits in our room...it takes up very little space but yet gives baby her own little bit of space. The fun part is going to be keeping a certain little girl from trying to pick the baby up out of bed. She keeps going over to the crib saying "baby sleep!". Needless to say, there will be lots of supervision going on!!

We've been doing lots of shopping for a good swing over the last few months. All of our babies have absolutely loved the swing and spent much of their newborn days sleeping there (rather than in their bed). The swing we finally decided on is a Graco Sweetpeace. It has lots of different sounds (music/nature/white noise), but also has a slot where you can plug in your MP3 player so you can play songs of your own choice. This will be VERY nice! The other great selling feature of this swing is that you can put the baby in the swing seat (pictured), but the carseat will ALSO fit in the swing in place of the swing seat. This means that if we get home and the baby is asleep, I can put her carseat on the swing...or if I'm getting ready to leave and have finished feeding the baby, I can put her in the carseat to be rocked to sleep while I get the other kids ready, etc. I have a feeling that this wonderful swing will be a lifesaver.

Anyway, hopefully next week I will get the baby's clothes washed and put away in our room. Then it will be time to pack the bags, do some thorough grocery shopping, and get last minute things ready. Sarah is coming with us for the baby's birth, so I want to spend some more time preparing her and talking to her about what will happen (and what might happen, etc). I have a wonderful person coming to stay with us for a month beginning mid-March to help me out in the days before and after baby arrives. Really looking forward to the extra help!