Friday, December 16, 2011

When What to My Wondering Eyes...

Between our travels and our traditions it has been hard to find time to visit this place of thought logging, but today I have a small window to share a few small thoughts.

If you have had an encounter with Bug, you know that she loves to share what's on her mind.  I must admit that at times her "think out loud" thought process has driven me crazy, however at Christmas time it is quite the opposite.

She is so in awe of all things Christmas.  From the birth of Jesus, to Santa coming down the chimney.... it is all Christmas, all the time:

-Every star in the sky is "the bright star from the Heavens, Mommy!"
-She wraps up her sister in "swaddling clothes" and sings Away in a Manger to her.... With a slight lyric change: "Away in a Manger, no crib for YOUR bed"
-The blue Cinderella dress is now worn to play "Activity (nativity) Scene"... I usually have to be the shepherd.
-We write a new letter for Santa almost daily
-Daily there is a request to "ask Daddy to go buy us a chimney", in fear that Santa will skip us
-Constant.... CONSTANT caroling.... her playlist: Jingle Bells, Away in a Manger, Santa Clause is Coming to Town, Go Tell it on the Mountain, and songs she makes up as she goes along; usually on the subject of Jesus, Christmas Trees, Santa, or Mary and Joseph (sometimes all in one song) *each song ending with a big finish; which is just doing a curtsey while singing the last line of the song again very slowly.
-She wants to wear Christmas dresses every day

and my favorite
-She will look at one of us randomly and, with a huge smile, say, "Merry Christmas! I love you!" followed by a huge hug..... which Peanut usually wiggles free of.

I have been so impressed by her heart and mind these past few weeks.  Since we started talking about baby Jesus and why he came to Earth, there have been some very interesting conversations.  We have been telling her about Jesus and his birth and sacrifice since she was a tiny baby, always hoping that something would sink in.  The other day my 3 year old looked at me and said, "Mom, Jesus came to Earth as a baby and then grew up to save us from our sin."  Then she proceeded to tell me what sin was and that it makes us unhappy.  Then "Baby Jesus" came back into the room, dragging swaddling clothes behind her and Bug began to direct us all.  She sang to Peanut and spun around the room in her Cinderella/Mary dress, leaving trails of glitter and excitement with every step.

I hope you are finding the Miracle of Christmas as exciting as we are this year.  May the next few weeks be filled with joy, love, glitter, and a big finish!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Love the One You're With

In a few hours, the girls and I are headed west.  To west Texas, to be exact.

We are joining my dad's side of the family in celebrating the birth of his mother on her 90th birthday!  My aunts, uncles, cousins, and cousins' families are all gearing up for an entire weekend of celebrating.  There is never any shortage of laughter or late nights.... sometimes accompanied by dancing and dress up from Aunt Mary's closet.  We, cousins, are spread out; in age, interest, home, and profession.... but we all have one lovely lady in common.  Our Nanie/Nannie.

*I recently (last night) discovered I am THE only one to spell her name with one 'n' in the middle, but as I said last night, I have been spelling it that way for as long as I can remember.... so for the sake of simplicity, today in this post, she will be known as Nanie. (which by the way, my computer is trying to auto correct)*

My Nanie is glamourous, strong, confident, God fearing, loving, classy, comforting, smart, hilarious, beautiful, and everything I hope to be as I grow and raise a family of my own.  I can think of no better way to honor her, than to go to her home and surround her with love and togetherness.

I am a middle cousin.  If you are middle cousin, you know that you were too little to play with the big kids, but "too cool" to play with the little kids.... because you were always trying to act "cool" so the big kids would let you trade stickers with them.  Now as an adult middle cousin, have realized that I actually happen to like all of my cousins and the people that they married, even the children that have produced.  I am proud to say, I have a hard time relating to anyone with family/holiday/etc drama.

I know there are people that dread family time, but I can only value it.  Although we may not see each other often or keep up with each other very well.... we have come from the same place, we share some of the same genes, personality traits, and values, and we are family.

Have a great weekend

To see how we have been gearing up for this weekend and honoring Nanie/Nannie, look HERE.

*the lovely people in the photo are (from left to right) My Granddaddy Jimmy, Memaw, Nanie, and Granddady Thronton, at my parents' rehearsal dinner.*

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

NEWS: Artificial Pancreas

No original words from me today.... just some news from JDRF.  If you have donated prayer, time, efforts, or money to JDRF, you should read THIS.   I'm sure it's surprising to some of you that all the "gear" in the picture is exciting..... "Yes, I would love to add more 'gear' to my 3 year old's body!".... but it's the simple truth: It's a STEP in the right direction.

Hope you are having a great week!

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Traditionally Speaking

Happy (almost) December!  I love December.  We get to partake in all things Christmas, there is a huge break from "regular" life at the end of the month, and the cold temperatures are new on the scene so they  haven't yet driven me to the point of insanity and sweat suits.

This year, our little family is embarking on a very busy, but adventurous December.  Upon returning from a celebration of thankfulness in Texas, my husband reminded me that "we are putting our house on the market in January, and I would like to put a lot of stuff in storage before we show it."  I replied with a simple, "that sounds great!  It will be good to get some clutter and stuff out of the house."

And then he "sprung it on me" that January is next month!  I am a relatively organized person and I LOVE to get rid of things we do not use.  However, our family of 4 and an animal as acquired quite a lot of stuff, clothes, toys, tools, decorations, and MANY other nick knacks that have suddenly started to drive me crazy.  This is even after selling $700 worth of stuff in a garage sale over the Summer!  Needless to say, I have my work cut out for me in this department.

In other news: We will be traveling to my parents' home town to celebrate my grandmother on her 90th birthday with "all the family" as Bug says.  There will be more on this next week, as the birthday party weekend approaches.

December also brings about one of my most favorite words: tradition.  If something happens once, and I enjoyed the happenings; it is likely that I will declare it to be a new tradition.... and I may or may not suggest that we should make a t-shirt or a Styrofoam cup to celebrate it.

Now that I am a parent I have assumed the role of tradition keeper and maker.  Whether it is a tradition from my family or my husbands, I want to keep it and pass it and make it specific to our family.  Here are a few that my husband and I have absorbed from our upbringings:

*some are celebrated solely with one side of the family*

Santa: talking about him, writing him a letter, not idolizing him, but enjoying the tradition of the idea
Chinese food on Christmas Eve
Tamales on Christmas Eve.... real tamales, not greasy or crumbly... only goodness.
Those little poppers with the paper crown and the toy inside (ringing any bells??) at the place setting at Christmas Eve dinner
The decorations are always the same.... as they should be
Runny noses
Christmas tree decorating the day after Thanksgiving
Champagne with frozen peaches at some point surrounding Christmas Day and presents
Stuffing stockings.... to the point of overflow
Nativity scenes
Watching each person as they open their gift, one at a time
The father of the youngest child reading The Night Before Christmas to all the kids on Christmas Eve
Huge big brunch after opening presents
Going to a movie on Christmas Day
Kids racing into the living room to see the Santa gifts
Looking at other people's Christmas lights
Watching White Christmas
Singing Happy Birthday to Jesus
Christmas Eve church service as a family
Leaving cookies and milk for Santa
Christmas pajamas

There are many more that occur throughout the month, but those are the few that mostly surround the actual day of December 25th.

Now that I have my own family, I have started to implement a few of my own traditions.

Tomorrow we begin a new tradition.  (I realize that sentence does not make sense.... but hopefully the action we are beginning tomorrow will become a tradition.... get the idea?)  Over the past couple of months I have gathered children's books on the subject of Christmas; from my parents' house, from our own bookshelves, and with a little help from Amazon to finish out the collection.  We now have 25 books, (poorly) wrapped in (cheap) Christmas wrapping paper, ready to be traditionalized.

Every night after the dinner/bath time dance the girls will get to pick one book from the basket, and then we will read it all together before bed.  I know there will be nights that it doesn't all work picture perfectly as I have made it sound, but that's life with toddlers.... expectations are minimal, but excitement is necessary.

A few of the other things we have started....

Making a gingerbread house (but at our house, "none of that stuff actually tastes good.... it's like all the play food in the kitchen in your room: not for eating, just for playing")
The wreath on our front door.... that we made with the big bulbed colored lights... (think J.Crew Holiday catalog cover: 2007.... you are remembering it now.....)
Sprinkling "Reindeer food" (glitter and bird seed) in the yard on Christmas Eve
Elf on a Shelf.... our Elf is named Glitter and he gets a daily report on how "I was so nice to my friends at school today, Glitter!"  and "Look, Glitter, I'm showing my sister love!"... in hopes that St. Nicholas will hear of her niceties in Glitter's nightly report.

I'm certain, and hopeful, that many more traditions will develop as our family grows..... as long as we don't start participating in that strange "jump in the icy water and swim in there" tradition.  I will steer us more in the warm and safe direction.

Happy December Eve!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Be Thankful, You Turkey!

I figured I would join the masses of people in social networking world and air my thankfulness. Straight to business.

I am thankful for my husband.
Saturday was my husband's 30th birthday and we celebrated in a big way. Four of my friends and I planned this party for our husbands who have been friends for about 10 years (15 for a few of them). We had a big time with tons of friends and family and my feet have finally recovered from the 7 hours of fabulous shoes I wore that night. It was the greatest birthday present I could have given, the husband, daddy, provider, protector, leader, and comedian our little family has come to know and love.

I am thankful for perspective.
Last week I helped plan an event for about 250 women in my Bible study. Our guest speaker is Mother to 19 children and has the 20th on the way. I've been thinking about her all week as little frustrations pop up..... Laundry, meal times, grocery shopping. I was frustrated as I folded laundry yesterday and remembered, "she does this for 20 people every week, there are only 4 of us, one of which wears scrubs every day.... I think I can handle this."

I am thankful for Joy at the appointment desk.
Last week amongst the craziness of event planning, I managed to schedule 2 doctor appointments and a dentist appointment. It should come as no surprise that I missed my dentist appointment all together, and then remembered Bug's endocrine appointment 5 minutes AFTER it started. I was very thankful for Joy, the receptionist at "appointments". She laughed at my excuse...."Joy! Hi. My daughter had an appointment 5 minutes ago, but she won't be there because she is currently enjoying circle time and centers.". After a few minutes of small talk, we had an appointment for the next morning. All went well, as Bug amazed me with her poise, watching Ronald from the lab draw blood from her tiny arm, sticking her with a huge needle and filling two big tubes. She sat as still as a statue and took deep breaths. When it was over she reminded us that she was brave ("I am so brave Mommy.") and ready to get stickers and leave. When we left she requested new lip gloss and chick fill a, and life was good again.

I am thankful for my eaters.
Bug and Peanut love to eat. There is not much that Bug will turn down and I have to go to the grocery 3 times a week to keep us in fruit for Peanut. I have the hardest time grocery shopping with them because as soon as I pick something up to put it in the cart they both want to eat it right away. Great problem to have, but I've said it before, and I'll say it again; Hide the bananas!

I am thankful for 2 a.m.
We check Bug's blood sugar every night at 2 a.m. I have grown strangely fond of this ritual. It eases my mind to know what her numbers are and to see her soundly sleeping in her bed. My husband and I have also had some great conversations surrounding the 2 o'clock hour.
Me: "my alarm went off, it's your turn to do blood sugar."
Husband: "yeah, I got it. I'm up."
10 minutes pass......
Me: "are you getting up? Blood sugar?"
H: "I am UP! I got it!"
10 minutes.........
Me: "ok....are you going to check sugar or not?..."
H: "I'll do it! Just get me some BLOOD!"

Very convincing and very much still asleep, he didn't remember that exchange the next day.

Lastly, I am thankful for my big huge vehicle.
We are loading up the car in the (early) morning with kids, dog, adults, and stuff and going to spend the holiday with my family in Texas. I had my first "we are moving to a different state in 6 months" meltdown last night, so concentrated family togetherness could not come at a better time! We are runny nose free and ready to be thankful.

Now off to be thankful for a Disney movie, so I can pack and clean this house before thanksgiving travels 2011!

Monday, November 14, 2011


OOPS! I totally dropped the ball, and missed the live webcast about the artificial pancreas!  I am totally swamped with two big events that I decided to plan back to back; all fun things but busy..... so I will have to get some research done soon and give everyone a complete report.


Have a great week!

Friday, November 11, 2011

Be Aware

I come bearing a lot of excuses for my lack of communication lately, but I will spare you the over-share and welcome myself back into your view... With a slightly boring post.

November is diabetes awareness month, but since I make it a point to make you aware of diabetes on a regular basis, I promise not to overwhelm anyone with facts or least not all at one time.

I retain knowledge much better when I have a visual to which I can attach my thoughts. With that In mind, I have found a few pictures that I feel will bring about more "awareness" on the subject of diabetes; more specifically, type 1 diabetes. The pictures are pretty self explanatory, so there will be no captions.

On a slightly different note; November 14th is world diabetes day. Don't bother checking your calendar, it is not a holiday, yet. There will be a live webcast at 3:30pm ET discussing the new developments with the artificial pancreas. I will discuss this in more detail later, but just know that it's an exciting time for type 1 diabetes research.

That's all the awareness I'm going to bring about today.

Have a great weekend.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Trick or Tricky Treats?

I don't particularly love Halloween.

scary things
costume idea changes almost daily

However, Bug is overjoyed about trick-or-treating and could not be more excited about all things Halloween; pumpkins, costumes, witches, ghosts, pumpkins, parties, and even candy.  So, with that in mind.... I am jumping on her excitement train and this evening I will be taking Snow White and her Apple to brave the elements.

Everywhere we go there is talk of candy and trick-or-treat and sugar, etc.  Bug even plays pretend "trick-or-treat" when we are at home, away from the worldly candy pressures.  Needless to say, as she gets older I have learned I have to have a plan of action before heading into situations like this.

Even at a birthday party, recently, I was at war with the yummy options at the food table as the other kids filled their plates with one of each.  I hadn't had a plan and was about to have a knock-down-drawn-out fit on my hands.  Thankfully she settled for "you can have one sip of milkshake, half a cookie, and take home a cake pop". I know I won't be able to get away with that very long.  But I don't have to enter the war room just yet; for today I can relish in her naivete as she truly believed me today when I told her "ew, that's bubble gum.... you do not like that stuff!"

We will not be trick-or-treating long, but some friends of ours have offered to stock their candy pile with Bug friendly things, so we will be heading to their block for a bit.  The fact that these friends thought to do this before I even thought there was a need, brought tiny happy tears to my eyes.  After visiting friends, we will head to my husband's parents' house for some more diabetic friendly treating.  Then tomorrow we can begin our conversations about Thanksgiving and how Mommy is so thankful the Halloween Candy Battle 2011 is over.

I'm going to post a list below of candies and their carbohydrates for those interested, thanks to the JDRF website.  And for those interested in bringing sugar free cheer here are a few ideas:

any of the plastic Halloween jewelry
Halloween tattoos
Clementine Oranges or other fun little fruits
100 Calorie Packs
little bags of popcorn
and the list goes on.... but those are my top 8

Se la vie. She is excited.  And as I watch her face light up as she wishes everyone she sees "Happy Halloween!", I can only feel blessed by my little ball of excitement and joy.  Her cup overflows..... and in turn, mine is filled just a bit more.

Happy Halloween.

Carbohydrate Values for Common Candies*

CandySize/PackageCarbs (g)
3 Musketeers16 gram fun-sized bar12g
3 Musketeers2.13 oz bar46g
Baby Ruth2 oz. bar37g
Baby Ruth1 fun size17g
Blow Pop suckerOne sucker13g
Butterfinger2 oz. bar41g
Butterfinger22 gram-fun sized bar15g
Candy corn15 pieces15g
Dum Dum suckersOne sucker5g
Gummy Bears11 pieces30g
Heath Bar1.4 oz. bar25g
Hershey's Almond3 minis15g
Hershey's Almond1.45oz. bar20g
Hershey's Kisses6 pieces16g
Hershey's Milk Chocolate barsnack size10g
Jolly Rancher1 piece6g
Kit Kat bar3 piece bar10g
KitKat1.5 oz. package26g
Licorice3 6-inch Twizzlers15g
M&M's"Halloween" mini box10g
M&M's, plainmini pack15g
M&M's, plain1.69 oz bag34g
M&M's, peanutmini pack13g
M&M's, peanut1.74 oz bag30g
M&M's, peanut butter1.69 oz bag27g
Milky Way2.15 oz bar43g
Milky Wayfun-sized bar14g
Nestle's Cruch1.5 oz28g
Nestle's Crunch4 mini bars26g
Reese's Cups2 regular-sized 1 oz cups18g
Reese's mini cups4 1-oz mini cups16g
Skittles15 pieces15g
Skittlesmini pack17.5g
Snicker'sfun size12g
Snickers2.07 oz. bar36g
Snickers20-gram fun-sized bar12g
Starburst4 pieces16g
Sweet Tartsmini packs - 5 packs13g
Tootsie Pop1 pop16g
Tootsie Roll midgets1230g
Tootsie Rolls2 bars23g
Twix2 2-oz. cookies37g
Whoopers8 Pieces15g
Whoppers1 small pouch16g
Wonka Pixie StixEach (about 6 in. in length)2g

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

The Little Red Wagon That Could..... And Will

Lately I have been suffering from what can only be described as the opposite of writers block.  I guess we could call it writers overload....?  Every time I sat down to write I couldn't decide which topic to tackle!  So now I have made a list of fun things to discuss and dissect, all of which will have to wait for a later date.

This morning I read an email from a friend telling me that a friend of hers was currently "living" at our local children's hospital with her 3 year old, who was recently diagnosed with type 1 diabetes.  My friend asked that I reach out to this family in hopes that I could tell them a little bit about what it's like "in the real world", after the hospital stay.

Unfortunately, I have received quite a few emails like this from all over the country.  I have sent many emails to parents of little ones now forced to live such a big life.  I know there are many more out there struggling to find their normalcy amidst the shock of such a big lifestyle change; so I want to address them today, and especially the parents of the 3 year old in our 'Little Town'.

First of all, I want to tell you to breathe.  This is your life now, so lets go ahead and start dealing with that.  On this issue I allow myself a few 10 minute meltdowns a month.  Whether it is tears, frustration, silence; I think I need to have those little pity parties every now and then.  After the 10 minutes of "woe is me", "I hate diabetes", "blah blah blah".... move on!  Get over the fact that you are:
The simple fact is: you are dealing with this now and it is making your hourly life a challenge, BUT your child will be living with this forever, or until a cure is found.  You are the lifesaver your baby/toddler/kid needs, so it's time to step up.

I also want to tell you to find support.  Church, family, friends, neighbors, etc.... let them listen, learn, and help you and your family as you find your new normal.  If someone says they want to help, LET THEM!  Educate your babysitters, family members, school teachers and anyone that will be joining the life saving team.  You will need to take a break, so you will need someone to be capable of taking over for a few hours.  In that same vein: take turns between you and your spouse with the night time blood sugar checks.  (and if you are tackling this solo.... again: let someone help you.... you need a break)  We check Bug's blood sugar every night at 2 and I don't realize how much that effects me until I have a night off and get to do something as simple as stay in bed all night!

One important thing to remember when it comes to all the support you are building: you can not expect anyone to understand EXACTLY what you are going through.  Your friends and family will love you, help you, go out of their way to make your child feel comfortable and "normal".... all of that is beyond wonderful, and has brought me to tears many times.  However, unless they are you or me or another parent raising a child with type 1, you will never be able to look at them in the face, with tears in your eyes, and say "I really hate this" and have them say "I know" right back to you..... all without actually uttering a word!  This diagnosis changes everything.  It will put a hitch in almost ever gear of your life and you will adjust.  You WILL adjust.  You have to adjust.

Lastly, I want to assure you that the average person doesn't know what type 1 diabetes is and you will be asked questions similar to the few that have come my way:

"did you feed her too much sugar at too early of an age?"
"when will she grow out of it?"
"is there a vaccine for that now?"
"did you not nurse your baby long enough?"
"was she born with it?"
"have you looked into a natural cure?"

These sound crazy to you now, because you have been buried in diabetes education books and articles.... but I have to admit, I asked my brother-in-law (an adult with type 1) why he was wearing a pager with his bathing suit, when I first met him.  It was his pump.  Makes me nauseous now, just thinking about those words coming out of my mouth!  So, try not to be angry when people say "stupid" things.... it is just an opportunity to bring about an awareness of this awful condition and a need for a cure!

Take it hour by hour.  Sleep when you can.  Take breaks.  Vent to a listening ear.  Live the life you planned to live; diabetes will travel, go to school, take ballet, eat sugar, go to camp, and beyond.  Give your kid a hug and be so thankful you are able to.... too many kids aren't able to leave the children's hospital with mom and dad in the little red wagon; still something I have to remind myself often.  And mostly, remember that even though you feel it.... you are not alone.  Sadly, there are bunches of us out there living this life and praying, in earnest, for a cure.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Very Funny, God!

I often tell people that I think God has a great sense of humor, judging by the cards he has dealt me.

I like to think about him with a little, or very large, notebook, planning my life and all of it's occurances.

"Ok, so I think for this one, she'll start out as a 'tom-boy' and then grow up to love all things fashion and girly-ness.  And how about I give her unruly hair that she will hate and loathe as a middle schooler, and then I'll wait to let her learn how to fix it until she's in college.  Then, hmmm, how about she'll be a terrible student and struggle in school, and then become a school teacher!  Perfect!  Oh, and then I think I'll throw in a lot of other embarrassing and character building moments along the way.  This is going to be hilarious!  I can't wait.... I really do love my job."

Lets start with the gross stuff, and get it out of the way.

I have a completely irrational fear of all things throw-up.  I don't want to talk about it, hear about it, read about it, write about it..... Anyway, Bug, now three, has shown us (since the age of 6 months) her extreme inability to deal with any sort of motion: swing, car, boat, airplane, marry go round, tire swing....  Now there are "car vitamins" (chewable dramamine) in every area of my life, car, purse, make-up bag, and even places I have hidden them, thinking, "this way if I run out of the pills in the box, and we are driving through a mountain pass, and our air conditioning goes out, and rolling the windows down isn't helping, I'll remember to look here: in the strange storage compartment of my car where the 'get your spare tire out' tools live! Perfect!"

Bug also has a ridiculously strong gag reflex, which I won't dive into completely, but just know that if she tastes something she doesn't like, or if she touches something that her baby sister has recently chewed on..... lovely noises and faces are induced.  Don't even get me started on cold and flu season when she has a major throat clearing cough.

Peanut on the other hand, while not showing any signs of motion sickness, or common sense for that matter, has been known to put her fingers down her throat and make herself gag and even sick at times.  This usually happens in the car, when I can't reach her little hand to yank it from the depths, and she succeeds in her strange and gross quest for who knows exactly what, which then makes her gag-reflecting sister start in on her own wonderful behavior.  Lovely.  Now, I am pulled over in a strange apartment building parking lot, cleaning up Peanut, and shouting at Bug to "just relax!! please just look out the other window and breath through your mouth!!  You are not allowed to get sick too!"  All to which Bug says, between deep mouth breathing, "But..... Mommy!.... why...... does.... she.... do that?!?!"

Very funny, God.

The other thing that I think is comical, is that I am doing pretty difficult math equations at least 3, sometimes up to 6, times a day when I am giving Bug her insulin.  If you were one of my math teachers, or any of my teachers for that matter, you would be laughing.  I hate all things math.  I'm terrible with numbers.  I add or subtract a zero all the time and tell people that "yes! she bought her house for $25,000!  Isn't that great?!"  or  "I think tuition is something like $70,000 a year for Kindergarten?!"

You can imagine my surprise, as I sat in the hospital room, holding my newly diagnosed little Bug, and the diabetes educator proceeded to write a huge equation on the board, with x's and y's and big words, and decimals.  It was at that point that I decided I would not be leaving the hospital and/or staff of medical professionals unless I had a magical calculator to do the math, and dose my child for me.

My fear of depending on my non-mathminded brain to keep my child alive, is possibly what drove me to my point of assertion with the doctors.  "So, are y'all ready to go home today?!"  To which I replied, "No!  I am not leaving until we have a pump.  Yes, I'm serious.  Yes, I realize I will be living on this tiny weird chair/couch/bed for 4 more days.  I can not do the math!"

Again... Ha. Ha.

Lastly, we come to my husband.

I always said that I would never leave my beloved home state.  I also remember saying at a very young age, after witnessing a friend's dad missing a sporting event due to his work schedule as a doctor, that "I will never marry a doctor!  He will never be home!"  Well, here I am, a happily uprooted Texan and a doctor's wife.

After meeting his family and father (a physician as well), and hearing stories of life with dad as a doctor, I was only encouraged by how little he would actually miss and how similar his work hours would be to that of my own father, as an attorney.  I also came to realize that when he was gone, I had this huge built in family of people that I actually happen to love spending time with.... so work hours, schmirk hours... I also got to marry his lovely family!

The Texas uprooting was much easier than I had expected.  My new people are fabulous and friendly, and there are things here called pine trees and seasons!  After living in my new state for a little over 5 years, I can say that, while still a Texan at heart, there is no place I would rather be.

Clearly God knows what is best for me, because I would not have chosen any of those things, had I been left to my own devices.... except for my husband, I would pick him again for sure.  As it turns out, I am actually really good with Bug's dosages and have become a self proclaimed "whiz" when it comes to the equations; which in turn has given me the confidence I need to care for her on a daily basis.  The throw ups, I could still do without, but I know it will all make for really great stories some day.......?  Verdict is still out on that one.  And lastly, I love my new home state and my husband's profession..... All the up's and downs' that come with it all, have made me who I am today, and I happen to like lil ol' me!

So now, I can only cautiously await the ways that the Lord will humble me and humor himself in the days to come. Although, I must admit, I'm laughing too.

Have a great week!

Friday, September 23, 2011

Fun Friday Find: F is for......

Happy Fall, Faithful Followers!

F is for....

Fall!  I absolutely adore all things Summer.  Heat, clothing, slower pace, no school, vacations, etc etc, and so on.  Many of you know that I have a hard time with change.... daylight savings, new neighbors, new t.v. shows... you name it.   However, when it comes to fashion... I can handle it.  When the cooler temperatures started rolling into our neighborhood a short while ago, I stood at my closet door realizing (as I do with every seasonal change) that I had forgotten how to dress in anything other than sun dresses and tank tops.  After revisiting the cardigan, jeans, boots, and long skirts/dresses department of my life I decided that I would be ok with the weatherman using the words "much cooler" and "55 degrees!"  Winter will be another topic and therapy session entirely.

Just for today, I will enjoy the word Fall and think on these things:

-hot tea in the afternoon
-T.V. shows returning

F is also for....

Friends!  I had dinner last night with some lovely ladies who happen to all have babies and we had a fabulous time.  I got to spend time with some of my favorite people that I do not get to see very often, and I met a new friend.... whom, I am proud to say, also wipes down the tables and high chairs in restaurants; the beginning of a beautiful friendship, I believe.

This was one of those dinners that should have started at 3 in the afternoon.  After 4 hours of talking, laughing, crying due to laughing, we had to call it a night.... only because the hour of 11 p.m. was rapidly approaching and not because we had run out of material.  We were celebrating a dear friend expecting her first baby and we were giving her all the advice we could possibly think of.  All welcomed by the guest of honor... we made sure to ask every 20 minutes, "are we freaking you out?! you're going to be fine!  ok... what's next....."  She seemed to be picking up what we were throwing down, so we continued.

This was not your average "you're having a baby, so we got you a nice stroller!!" type of deal.  There was:
a spreadsheet
printed out questions
note taking
a box filled with invaluable things like battery operated nasal aspirators, hand sanitizer, and a sound machine, among other "I can't live without...." types of things
a few bottles of wine
every bit of the table settings from the new Missoni for Target line

It did not take us long to realize how incredibly wise and amazing we all were and that with our brains and experience put together, we should quickly get on the phone about a book deal.  The title is still in the works, but I'm hopeful that we'll be hearing from Missoni about wanting to jump on board after they hear about it.

Lastly, F is for...

Family!  My parents are coming to town this weekend to see us and celebrate Peanut's birthday, and also witness her dedication at our church on Sunday.  (for those who are more familiar with an infant baptism; a baby dedication is mostly for me and my husband as parents.... publicly dedicating ourselves to our child and that we will raise her in a Christian home, with the help of our families, friends, and church family.)

We are all so excited to see our Pop and Susu!  There will be farmers marketing, shopping, golfing, eating, churching, and there will be cake.

Have a great weekend!

Monday, September 19, 2011

Celebration Station

I was sort of absent from blog world last week.  We have had a lot going on surrounding our little house.  I have been doing my celebration preparation routine, and loving every minute of it.  There is a lot to discuss, so I will try to give you the "reader's digest" version.

My husband's brother and his wife came to town for various reasons and stayed with us which was so much fun for all of us, but especially, "sleep-over obsessed" Bug.  When they got to town we celebrated our little Peanut.  Her birthday is actually TODAY, but I'll get further into that later.  We had dinner in our "intimate" (tiny) dining room, and Bug made everyone wear the tiny birthday hats that were part of the table setting.  We sang.  Peanut cried.  Bug blew out the candle.  Peanut shook her head and spit out the yummy birthday cake I had made.  Over all, it was a lovely party.... considering the fact that the guest of honor was strapped to an orange plastic chair and rubbing melon and bananas in her hair.

After dinner we greeted a sitter and left for an adults only celebration downtown; to see Robert Earl Keen play some good 'ol country music.  A bunch of our friends were also there celebrating that we were out without our adorable children.  It was nice to see and be seen.

The next morning came all too quickly for some of the celebrators from the previous evening.  However, we all met at the park for the JDRF Walk to Cure Diabetes, wearing our matching team shirts, sipping our coffee, and praying for sunshine.  Bug went on stage with her red balloon and the rest of the JDRF ambassadors to get the walk started.  Her moment in the spotlight, only to be cut short by the sudden need to "go potty", and a quick exit off stage left.  Then the sun had begun to shine, and the walk commenced.  Bug's team raised (and is still raising) a bunch of money for diabetes research, and we will find out in about a month exactly how much we raised.  As of right now, we are one of the top family team fund raisers..... thanks to all of you!

The next day my husband and I were able to have a last minute date, and meet our new favorite (non-family member) babysitter.  On our date we celebrated our anniversary (that was actually on Friday).  We have known each other for almost 6 years, and have been married for 5.  My husband is my most favorite person, my best friend, and my greatest support.  We have been through a lot together in 5 years, and it has truly made us who we are today as a family.  It has been humbling, exciting, scary, and hilarious all at the same time.  If I had it all to do again, I wouldn't change a thing.  It would be nice to have the relationship we have without having to get here through a diabetes diagnosis.... but I'm not sure it would be the same.

Today, Monday, September 19th, is Peanut's first birthday.  Born one year ago at 7:36 am on a Sunday morning, weighing 8 lbs and 1 ounce and measuring 20 inches.... a bit of a shrimp in our family.  Peanut is a:

cuddle monster
food thrower
dog lover
sleep lover
fruit monster
second child
joyful little girl
determined little girl
1 year old!

I can't believe our baby is 1.  I could not be more excited about it.  I'm getting to know more and more about her every day, and I am dying to know even more.

Have a great "Peanut's Birthday" Monday!

Friday, September 9, 2011

Fun Friday Find: Support

First of all I need to address the many of you wanting to know how Bug did at her first ballet class.

I would like to fully address the ballet class at a later date in a post dedicated fully to the subject.  So for now, let's just leave it at the fact that the little 45 minutes of "dancing" was everything she had hoped for.  I sent my mom a picture of her in her "uniform" just before entering the class.... huge smile, tiny little bun, pink all over.  My mom responded with something like, "I hope it's as exciting as she thinks its going to be".  By the time I was able to respond to her text, the girls were stretching... the butterfly stretch to be exact.  Bug's face was completely lit up, as she smiled at the teacher (whom she was sitting too close to; purely out of excitement).  When Ms. B called the stretch the butterfly stretch, and said to "flap your wings", Bug thought that was so funny; covered her mouth, shoulders bouncing, eyes squinted, kind of laughter.

I responded to my mom just saying, "they are only stretching and she already looks like she's in heaven!" Much more to follow about ballet, but just know its one of the better investments we have made thus far.

Now... on to my Fun Friday Find.

Next weekend we will be participating in our third JDRF Walk to Cure Diabetes.  I know I've mentioned it before, but since I first mentioned it, we have ordered and received our team shirts and started to assemble our team.  It always surprises me how moved I am to see other people show interest in a cause that effects our family.  Whether it's a donation, a word of encouragement, or signing up to walk with us... people are showing their support.

I still have people asking how to sign up and or donate.  You can go to and in the spot where it says "donate to a walker" (which you don't have to do, but that is how you get to the sign up page... sneaky of them, isn't it)  you type in Bug's name (Ada) our team name "We the Peeples" and where we are walking (Little Rock).  Then you can follow the steps from there.  The whole process takes about 6 minutes.

Our team also walks to support Bug's uncle who also lives with type 1 diabetes.  We just advertise him less because he's not as little and cute.  But if you know and love Bug's uncle more than you do her own little self, sign up for his sake, because he needs a cure too!  He will be there that morning to greet his adoring public.

I would like to encourage you to sign up online, if you are planning on walking with us, because it will help all parties involved.  I will have a visual to see how many people we are expecting, JDRF will have a visual to see how they did overall this year, and ALSO if we have one of the biggest teams, we get a fancy tent on the day of the walk.  The first year we walked as a team, we had a ton of walkers.  I was so excited, I decorated the tent in our team colors, balloons, streamers, brought snacks.... very exciting.

There will also be fun things for the kids, bounce house, petting zoo, face painting, entertainment on a big stage.... Radio Disney was there last year.

We will start to assemble at 7:30, and we will be walking at 8.  Parking is a zoo, so just decide now that you will not be bothered by that.  The walk is about 3ish miles I think, and after the walk there are snacks, play time, and awards for the kids that raise the most money and win the t-shirt contest.

After all of that... I will make us all take a picture (mostly because the past two years we left and I said, "we forgot to take a picture of everyone!  next year we WILL do that.").  Then you can leave and have a nap.

A fun side note: last year at the walk I was one week away from my due date with Peanut.  I was feeling good that day, so I did half of the walk until I was worn out and hot....... 6 hours later I was in labor at the hospital and delivered a baby sister soon after.

So, sign up and come join us!  I will be delivering t-shirts throughout this next week, so let me know if you want one.... they are already going fast, they are cute, and they are free!

Have a great weekend.