Tuesday, August 31, 2010

This past Sunday, our Iain boy turned 11.  He started off the day waking up in a tent at Lake Carlos State Park (our family was camping this past weekend).  He ate some breakfast, he fished, he played with his cousin and he got to ride home in the truck.  He then invited the neighbor boys over for a baseball game, pizza and cake.  He also got this awesome jersey for his birthday present from dad and me:

Iain is a big Phillies fan ... not so much a Twins fan!

Then on Monday we went to his aunt Connie's house where we enjoyed delicious burgers, potato salad and corn on the cob .. followed by some more fabulous birthday cake.  I think we have a happy 11-year-old on our hands, and a very successful birthday indeed!

Iain, my prayer is that you will always walk in God's love and keep the beautifully sensitive and loving heart that you have.  I'm so proud of the boy that you are and love you very much!

-- * Don't forget to visit my review blog for your chance to win a $100 Visa Gift Card, sponsored by BlogHer and Kellogg's. * --

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Good news came my way yesterday!  The news: I absolutely do NOT have gestational diabetes and can continue to enjoy my Special K bars as frequently as I would like to have them! :)  Now that I'm back on a more regular eating schedule (considering that fasting before my appointment completely threw my system off), I'm really enjoying the thought of preparing meals for the weekend and baking goodies for Iain's birthday (which comes up on Sunday).  Yesssssss .... 'tis a good day!

So, today consists of the kids and I heading out to do some school shopping, along with preparing some goodies for the weekend.  I may be out of touch for awhile again, but I promise that I am going to be back more consistently very soon!


Don't forget to visit my review blog for a chance to win a $100 Visa Gift Card (sponsored by BlogHer and Kellogg's).

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Sometimes I feel as if I am on a whirlwind ride that is going so fast that I will miss everything if I blink; other times I wonder if I will ever move forward in this pregnancy!  It seems like so long since I wrote this post when I was only 21-weeks along, yet here I am at 27 weeks and I'm feeling completely amazed at how much has changed!

The biggest change, aside from the size of my belly, is the fact that I have switched OB's.  I know it's not common to change doctors in the middle of your pregnancy, but Dr. T. (the OB I was previously seeing) only delivers at a hospital that is roughly an hour drive from my home in good traffic.  Imagine a traffic jam or a snowy November day and I all-of-a-sudden wasn't so comfortable going so far away from home to have this little guy.  So, regretfully, I talked to Dr. T. about how I was feeling and informed him that I would like to transfer to an OB who is closer to my home.  I say "regretfully" because I truly loved Dr. T. and feel like he has made this pregnancy experience a very enjoyable one.  However, he was completely understanding and made a recommendation for me to see an OB who is much closer to my home.  I saw this new OB (Dr. M.) for the first time on Monday and I feel total peace about the switch I made.  Dr. M. took a lot of time to answer questions, to make sure I was comfortable with the switch and to be of any help I needed.  He also had obviously spent time reading through my medical records that had been sent over from Dr. T., which I greatly appreciated, as it made me feel as if he truly cares and I'm not just another random patient who's having a baby.

The only downer about my appointment on Monday was that I failed my initial glucose test (testing for gestational diabetes) and had to go back there on Tuesday morning for the three-hour-long follow-up test.  I really can't complain, because the test wasn't awful and I got to spend three hours watching HGTV in the waiting room; the only downer was that I wasn't supposed to eat or drink anything after midnight the night before - so I went a full 12 hours without any food in me.  To say I was ready to pass out by noon is no exaggeration!  Thankfully I had brought a few granola bars along to my appointment and scarfed them down in a hurry on my way home.  Once I got home, I followed up my granola bars with a huge plate of spaghetti and a three-hour nap.  It's amazing the toll that fasting took on my body, and I'm thanking God that He was holding me throughout it all, because I fear I would have thrown up or passed out without His hand holding me (there was a LOT of praying going out from me during my appointment, as I wasn't feeling all that well).  So, my results of this test will come back today and I will be able to go forward from there - I'm just praying that they come back negative (meaning that I don't have gestational diabetes) and I can continue to enjoy this pregnancy without limitations.

Beyond that, all I can really say is that I'm still growing!  See?!

This is my attempt at a self-portrait!

Getting bigger every day ...

Holy moly check out that chubby wubby pregnant belly!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Hello hello!  I know that I have been terrible at keeping up with blogging lately - and you really do have my apologies for that!  Life has been just completely crazy with keeping up with pregnancy, my kids, preparing for school and hosting guests in our home.  Regardless, I do promise to post an update tomorrow, complete with pictures!

I just wanted to give a quick shout out to my review blog and let you know that this is the third week that I am giving away a $100 Visa Gift Card, sponsored by Kellogg's and BlogHer.  All you have to do to enter to win is go to my blog post and leave a comment!

More to come tomorrow ... I promise!! :)

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Life is busy.  This is no secret to any of you, I'm sure.  The thing about life being so busy is that it makes it extremely difficult to find time to get online and update my blog as frequently as I would like to.  There are often many blogging topics running through my head that I want to write about, but finding the time to do it seems to be almost impossible!  The irony of not updating my blog is that it's almost like cutting off communication with some of my dearest friends - the result of which is people oftentimes growing concerned or wondering if they can help you out in any way.

Yes, keeping up with a blog is a very difficult thing, especially during summer vacation.  I feel like I'm taking time away from my kids when I spend time online trying to get a blog post up.  Like right now, my oldest three are outside playing baseball together and Colin is standing in front of me doing a dance to the song that his lullaby lamb is playing.  Is that a cry for my attention?  Potentially!  So, for now I leave you with this simple post letting you know that life is crazy right now and I am hoping to be able to find time to blog again soon.

Praying that you are all enjoying your final weeks of summer!

On a side note, I am again doing a review sponsored by Kellogg's and BlogHer, and once again you have a chance to win a $100 Visa Gift Card.  All you have to do is visit my review blog here and leave a comment on THAT blog.  Any comments left on this blog (My Beautiful Day) do not qualify for the giveaway.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Tonight, after eating more than my (and the baby's) fair share of dinner, I sat back in my chair and said, "oooohhhhhh .... my belly feels big and fat" to which Colin looked at me with a very serious expression and replied:

"Because it is."

Oh the things that come out of that boy's mouth!!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

It's no secret that a road trip, while often quite enjoyable, can also get to be quite long.  Especially on the drive back home, when all of the anticipation of where you're going has diminished and you're just longing to be in your home again.  A few years before I married Monte, my brother Tory introduced me to a road trip game that sounded completely bizarre, but I have to admit it: I'm hooked!  The game is "I Spy a Cow".  The basic concept is that you want to spy cows along the drive before any other passengers in the car see them.  The catch is that, while you may spy an entire herd of cows, it only counts as one cow - in other words, you may not count more than one cow in the same pasture.  On top of that, if anybody happens to spy something that is NOT a cow (i.e. a horse) and mistakingly calls it a cow, they go back in points by one cow.  The big catch, however, is that you can clear all other players of any cows they had earned by simply spying a graveyard and calling it out before the other passengers.  When you spy these things, you MUST use the entire phrase of "I spy a cow!" or "I spy a graveyard" in order to earn these cow points.  The cow also must be able to be seen by other passengers to be verified that you're not making up cows in the midst of your road trip delusion!  Sound confusing, or just plain dumb?!  Don't think that about it - while I know it sounds strange and truly a waste of time, it makes road trips go by SO MUCH FASTER!  Monte and I play this every single time we take a road trip.  Granted, it's usually more fun to play with someone who doesn't share a checkbook with you (as our penalty for the loser is that they have to buy lunch), but even if you don't have a reward set in place, it's an amazing game and a great passer of time!

Our kids have come to expect this game from us, and Colin even tries to play along too, though with his own version where he spies "cow yokes".  After hearing him play this for awhile the other night, we asked him what he meant by cow yoke, and he explained that he was talking about the thing that goes around the cows to keep them in the field (he was spying fences!).  It is all too funny!

Another very common road trip game that my family plays is slug bug.  This is one that I choose not to participate in, as my ever-so-sweet-and-innocent daughter, Claire, punches far harder than she realizes and I have had the bruises to prove it!  While walking down to the park together one day, one of the kids spotted a VW Bug and called out the slug bug and tapped (our new rule - no hitting, just tapping!) their sibling.  Monte made a sly comment about the fact that there should be other things you can do too, like pull someone's ear each time you see a PT Cruiser, or kick them in the shins each time that you see an ATV.  Well, unfortunately, my children thought this would be a GREAT idea - and the ear-pulling began!

I'm just thanking God that we haven't seen any ATVs along our path! :)

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

For those who are unaware, MWOP (MckMama Without Pity) is a blog that was created to "expose the lies" that blog readers feel MckMama is telling.  While I have never been a follower of this blog, I have been directed to it a couple of times, as a few of my friends had mentioned via email that I was being discussed in the comments by readers of MWOP.  Today, after the birth of MckMama's fifth child, I was horrified at some of the things that were being said, and thus, this letter was formed.

Dear MWOP Readers,

I don't know you, and it's very likely that you don't know me, but considering the fact that the topics of your discussion have involved me and have involved things that are dear to my heart, I'm feeling that it's time to speak up and set some things straight.  In the few times that I have visited your blog I have witnessed countless attacks against MckMama for things she has said or done that don't line up in your mind.  While I would prefer to remain a background image and not stick my neck out there, some things have been said that absolutely need to be corrected, and thus I am raising my voice and saying them.

First, yes, I am MckMama's former neighbor.  I still live up the street from their lake home that was foreclosed on.  It has been mentioned that people assume that Jennifer and I are no longer friends because they foreclosed on their home at the same time that my husband and I were trying to sell our home, and because of their actions I must be "pissed" at them.  While I will admit that my husband and I were disappointed to see them allow their home to be foreclosed on, it wasn't anything that generated those assumed feelings of hatred.  Yes, our home was up for sale at that time and, while some interest was shown by potential buyers, we decided in the end that the heart of our family is still right here where we live, and it made more sense for us to invest the money that we'd saved into putting an addition on our current home and make it more functional than to uproot our family into a new home.  Our decision had nothing to do with the market effect that naturally happened because of their foreclosure, but had everything to do with the best interest of our family.

I have also seen mention of the fact that I have removed Jennifer's blog from my blogroll and the assumption was made that we just must not be friends anymore.  I can't really tell you why I removed her from my blogroll, because I don't specifically have a reason for that - I guess I just felt that it was the right thing to do, as I wasn't an avid reader of her blog anymore.  However, I don't blame our friendship dissolving on anything but the natural parting of ways when they moved.  Yes, they moved to a home that is only about one mile from my sister's home (whom I visit rather frequently), and we have gotten together a couple of times since they moved, but taking into account the fact that she has five young children and I have four children (with number five on the way), our schedules are seemingly too busy to make it work out for us to get together.  Guess what?  That's okay!  It was easier for us to maintain a friendship when we were neighbors because of our close proximity, but I'm not crushed over the fact that, as mothers, we are both too busy to maintain that friendship.  I don't dislike her, I don't disrespect her ... it's just a friendship that fizzled and faded away.

More than anything I want to clear up the assumptions that are continually made that "Stellan wasn't as sick as MckMama made it appear".  It bothers me that people have the gumption to make a statement like that.  I saw the pain that Jennifer went through as her precious babe was hospitalized time after time and I saw how it tore her up to have to be dealing with that.  I visited Stellan in the PICU at Children's once while driving Israel's mom up there (though I left within 10 minutes of arrival, since immediate family members are the only ones who are supposed to be there) and I guarantee you that the severity of his illness was not something that she dramatized.  I hate that people have it in them to throw out assumptions like that, stating that she only wants money and gifts and she feeds off the praises of her "sheeple".  It takes me to a place of frustration with all bloggers and makes me wonder if anybody is as genuine as they present themselves to be.  If we are so much better than she, why is it that we have all the time in the world to spend on this blog and bash her?

Today of all days can you just back off for awhile?  Allow her to enjoy the feeling of being a new mom again, allow her to revel in the beauty of her newest son, allow her to post whichever pictures of him she feels like and don't criticize her for the ones that she chooses!!  I encourage you to take a hard look at what you're doing and find a better outlet for yourself; go spend more time with your own children, take up a new hobby or just walk away from the computer and find something better to do.  When we sit on this side of the computer screen and jump to conclusions about someone, it makes us no better or worse than that person ... it just makes us snarky women, and no matter what you can say, that doesn't look good on anyone.

" ... he who is without sin among you, let them throw a stone at her first." - John 8:7b