Sunday, March 20, 2011

Barn Raising

A few months ago I was invited to a Thirty One party. I new that I would not know that many people (which usually makes me shy away from events), but this time I NEEDED a night away from the girls. I was right, I only knew the host. I was fixing to sneak away early, when I overheard one of the women talking about homeschooling. She was so animated and excited about things. We soon struck up a conversation. And I am so glad we did. It was on that day I met Kimberley Robinson. I learned that night about her large family and was able to meet some of the most well mannered preteens I have ever met. We parted ways that day and became friends on Facebook. That summer we happened to run into her and the children at the splash pad about month later. And again, she was so friendly and fun to talk to. So the other day, when I saw her plea for help to raise a cattle barn at her house, I quickly asked Cole. He thought it was a fun idea and we made plans to attend. I am so glad we did.

I cannot tell you how much fun we had. I know why the Amish still have barn raisings. What a wonderful day of food, fellowship, friends, and laughing children (and that isn't to mention the actually barn raising :) ) Ansley made a wonderful friend in Kimberley's Murphy. They were so cute telling secrets and holding hands. Ansley and Charlotte made their first mud pies and giggled like I have never heard before. The purity and simplicity in that day was more than I can put in words. The girls (who normally are shy and quiet when meeting new people) were relaxed and at ease. Before we had lunch Charlotte had already spread her blanket out to take a nap under an oak tree. I thank you so much Kimberley and Phillip for a wonderful day! I think the pictures will say more than I can ever describe in words.

Monday, March 14, 2011


Well, I have a confession to make. I L-O-V-E sleep. Yep! I said it. I think sleep was my first love. I pretty much can sleep anywhere and at any time. That all changed the moment we brought sweet little Ansley home. The first couple of weeks were rough of course, but by week 5 she was sleeping until 5 am. It was at that time that I was sure she did not fall far from my tree. Wow, how things have changed. Let me describe the events of this morning.

I have said repeatedly, "I am so ready for time change. At least after the time changes Ansley's internal clock will be set for 7:30 am not 6:30 am." Boy was I wrong. This morning at 6:32 am, I hear her bathroom door open and the little footsteps coming down the hall. She quickly darts to Cole's side of the bed and climbs in. She never says a word. Two minutes after Cole leaves, she sits up in the bed like she heard a gun shot, rushes to get down, and runs to the front door. That is when I hear the scream. "He left me. My daddy left me." I quickly try to reassure her that daddy is just gone to work just like every other weekday. But that is not what she was so upset about. After a few minutes I finally hear her say, "If he has to leave to go to work, can't he turn on my shows?" I thought I was going to die laughing.

That is when I hear Charlotte calling my name. Ansley (mommy in training) quickly lets her out of her room and they play for quite some time. I finally wake myself up and get the coffee going. I tell Ansley, "You have got to stop getting up so early. Mommy needs some time to wake up and get going before you get up." She looks at me all confused and replies, " Well, can you please tell daddy to stop waking me up. He is so loud."

After calling Cole this morning and describing how our child threw him under the bus. We came to the following conclusion: Ansley sleepwalks! She insists that her daddy woke her up this morning and every other morning. Even the other day during nap, she came out and I sent her back (because she had only been asleep for about thirty minutes.) But I had told her that I would lay down with her for a little while. So when I go into the my bedroom (where she is supposed to be napping), she is not in my bed. I frantically begin to look for her. Only to find her in her own bed, asleep with her best buddy, who was also napping.

Yep. My oldest child sleepwalks and talks, just like her Aunt Megan! She may have come from my body. But I am pretty sure I am raising myself and my sister all over again. :)

Ansley taking a nap with B. I love how their feet are touching. :)

Monday, March 7, 2011

Charlotte's Birthday

Over the weekend we had the awesome privilege to celebrate Sweet Baby Charlotte's 2nd birthday. It is so hard to believe that she has only been apart of this family for two years. In some ways it feels as though I was pregnant with her only yesterday, and then I can not remember life before her.

Charlotte has been such a little challenge in so many ways. She was so sick as a little baby. Taking medicine all the time and acting listless. All of that, without any answers from the doctors and specialist she was seeing. Developmentally she was slipping further and further behind and we were getting more and more worried for our little baby. That all changed during the summer of 2010. After doing a ton of online research and telling everyone in the world about her problems, a friend of ours casually mentioned something about Celiac Disease. Immediately, I ran home and researched pediatric Celiac Disease and Charlotte hit 4 of the 6 markers. Now, the real challenge began.

The specialist that was seeing her did not want to test for Celiac. They claimed she was far to young to be showing symptoms already. But, if I insisted she would order a test. Out a few that are available, she ordered the most expensive, not covered by insurance, and least accurate one. Now what? Well, although they recommended we did not change her diet. They also said it would not hurt her. So that is exactly what we did. And today I am so thankful that I followed my gut.

The poor baby was 16 months old, not walking, talking/verbalizing, or pulling up. Basically she sat there and let me hold her all day. Within three days of changing her diet we saw drastic results. She was making eye contact, verbalizing, skin was clear, and she was pulling up. And we were not the only ones who noticed the drastic change. We started the diet on a Thursday and on Sunday her Sunday School teacher made the following comment "I don't know what you did over this past week, but this is a totally different child."

I give you all that history for one reason. Charlotte is such a blessing. This weekend we truly celebrated her life and her health. Gluten free cake, monkeys (cake popsicles), hamburgers, chips and ice cream was the menu. And fun was on the agenda. The girls played and played with their cousins. Even the grandparents, and great grandmothers were able to be there.The last little birthday surprise was a trip to Build-a-Bear. Both Ansley and Charlotte had a blast. The girls were even able to see a rainbow as we headed home from our adventure. What a wonderful weekend we had. We are truly BLESSED!

Thursday, March 3, 2011

In Transition

Like many of you, we are always in a state of transition around here. This year we started doing a little preschool type stuff and well for a while I felt as though nothing was really sinking in. That was until yesterday. Charlotte, who is almost 2 now, starting singing the Leap Frog song (you know..."the A says aa. The A says aa. Every letter makes a sound. The A says aa."). The cool part is she didn't stop there. That little stinker sang all of the letters up to the letter K. Maybe it is the mommy in me, but I was totally impressed.

Which brings me to the title of this post, we are now in transition from baby-dom into toddler and preschool. I think this transition has hit me the hardest. Maybe because when Ansley transitions into a new stage, Charlotte is right behind her with all her baby cuteness. But, now Char is officially not a baby anymore :( Char not being a baby does make me sad (so I treat her like one as much as possible). But, I am super excited about the days we have ahead. The girls are growing leaps and bounds and Ansley is getting ready to start official "preschool". I am so blessed to be the mommy of two beautiful, smart, healthy, happy, crazy, loving, playful, girlie GIRLS!!