Monday, July 21, 2008

Top 10 Things That Make Me Proud

(in no particular order)

(1) When I go grocery shopping and stay under my budget of $70 per week.

(2) When I get a good deal on...anything.

(3) When I complete a project, particularly a scrapbook project.

(4) When I do something really unselfish for Marcus and never tell him about it.

(5) When I check everything off my "To Do" list.

(6) When I look back on my day with Caleb and Ethan and realize that I was more focused on loving and teaching them than I was on getting things done.

(7) When Caleb behaves well in public.

(8) When Caleb does something kind or helpful without being told.

(9) When I plan something carefully and everything goes smoothly as planned.

(10) When I plan something carefully, it doesn't go as planned, and I don't let it stress me out too much.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Sweet Ethan

Ethan is 3 1/2 months old and just such a precious little guy. He loves to be touched, talked to, cuddled, sung to, etc...anything that channels interactive attention his way, he soaks it all up. And not at all passively, either. If I lay in bed beside him to cuddle, he worms his little body as close as possible to take full advantage of the cuddling. If I talk to him, his entire face lights up with a HUGE Wagner smile and he talks right back with nonstop coos and gurgles. He is extremely touch-sensitive, and the lightest brush on his cheeks or thighs sends him into body-trembling laughter...he laughs so hard when tickled that it appears he is skipping breaths! When we're driving somewhere and he gets tired of his car seat and starts crying, all it takes is a couple of voices (usually mine and Caleb's) singing "Jesus Loves Me" or "Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star" or any other familiar song, and he stops crying and starts cooing along with the song. We've gotten in the habit of singing wherever we go in the car, and Caleb's repertoire of songs has grown incredibly. Ethan is not really interested in toys or books, as Caleb was at this age, but he LOVES people. He flirts with anyone he sees, and many people are very surprised to see how interactive he is at this young age. The part about all this that is the most heart-melting is that he has not yet learned to demand the attention he craves. He just waits for it patiently, and is just as happy to be talked to and tickled whether he's waited five minutes or thirty minutes. If his infant personality is an accurate indicator, this little boy is going to be a very loving, sensitive little guy who is way more interested in people than things. I'm very excited to watch him grow :)

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Mimi's Visit

Today we took Caleb's Mimi (Marc's mother) to the airport to fly back to Florida after a wonderful six-day visit. Caleb loves having company, and the first thing he wanted to know every morning when he woke up was "Where's Mimi?" As Mimi has often explained to her four children, she is a visual-spacial learner and therefore loves to physically walk around in all of the places that her children frequent whenever they move to a new place. So we took her to Marc's office (had to break in on the weekend), our church, our rec center, the library, a nearby petting farm (it was closed so we just had to peak in), and best of all, an awesome kids' science museum called the McWane Center. Mimi was so impressed with this 3-story interactive center full of really amazing learning/play centers for all ages, that she bought us a family membership. I am VERY excited about this membership, because cause-and-effect (i.e. toddler science) is right up Caleb's alley, and he will have endless fun at this place. Plus, it is open all the time, is indoors (therefore, cold, hot and rain-proof), and is not very busy during the week. Me and boys will be going every week and probably sometimes on the weekend with Marcus as well. Thanks for the wonderful gift, Mimi! While Mimi was here, we also attended a welcoming reception at which she and I met the seven other radiation oncologists in Marc's program and their families. I was happy to see that there are six or seven other pre-school children in the group, which make for more potential friends, as well as a family-friendly work environment. Mimi also got to attend our Sunday core group (Sunday night small group of young families) and meet some of the church families who are becoming our friends. All in all, it was a very good week :)

Friday, July 4, 2008

Goodbye TV!

Title pretty much says it all, but here's how it happened...we had everything set up with AT&T to get have DishNetwork installed for $20 p/month for the family pack of channels. After multiple "miscommunications" with AT&T (we communicated and they did not), we gave up in frustration. Cable is ridiculously expensive here and even DirectTV is more than we are willing to pay, so we've gone the past three weeks with no TV of any kind. A couple of days ago, we were talking about it and we came to the radical conclusion that maybe we didn't have any use for TV. We are Netflix subscribers, and we can get any TV show we really want to watch (without commercials) through Netflix. We can also order any kids shows for Caleb that we'd like (Caillou, Sesame Street, VeggieTales, etc.)

It is very freeing to give up TV. We don't waste time flipping channels looking for something to watch, we never watch commercials, and we aren't even tempted to get frustrated because we're missing our show for one reason or another. We can read about any news that we want to know about online, so all in all we don't see any negatives about this new TV-free life. It feels so good, that we're thinking that we may just continue this way even in a few years when we can more easily afford to pay for TV!