Monday, April 20, 2009

Cutest kids on the Block

It was time for the family pictures again. Usually a dreaded experience of having to coordinate outfits, nap schedules, and making sure that the children would smile for the photo, I was pleasantly surprised to find that there weren't a whole lot of tears and the photographer actually made both kids smile.

As usual, I went over budget with the package. But c'mon...look at these cuties below...

I was even able to get one done for my bio-profile page of my new ASP website. I will explain my next venture in my next blog. I didn't have my professional outfit on, but I got this picture for free. :)

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

An Eggciting Easter

We didn't do our normal church and Easter brunch, instead, this year we went to the beach with my brother's family and had a wonderful time. Even though it was only 50 degrees on the coast, it was still beautiful to see the ocean and for Micah and his cousins, it was fun to play in the sand.

And what would going to the beach be like without eating all-you-can-eat crabs, my all-time favorite! Too bad Caelan couldn't have some. But he always enjoys his pureed pears which is pretty yummy too.

And some of us participated in putt-putt. The sons of a golfer---both Luca and Gabriel showed interest and talent while Micah was more interested in finding the caves, throwing golf balls in the waterfalls, and crawling under tunnels as seen below:

He did enjoy his first Easter egg hunt, however, and quickly found all his eggs throughout the main level of the beach house.

The next morning all the kids got a basket from Auntie Halys.

Even Caelan got his first basket, and enjoyed his bunny tremendously.

Patrick and I didn't sleep that much while we were there because the kids got up a lot being in a new environment, but we wouldn't trade it because Micah got to play with his cousins from dawn to dusk, and that is worth its weight in gold. The cousins are looking forward to their next beach vacation together.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Cherry Blossoms

We had a great time last weekend with our good friends, the Newtons. They are such an awesome couple who often takes adventures with their kids! They recently took a trip across the world to the Phillipines with a six month old! So, we knew that traveling to DC by metro at the peak weekend for the Cherry Blossoms was going to be a cake walk for this family, so we should watch and learn!!!

It was Micah's and Joey's first trip on the metro. Micah was enthralled by the speeding metro as he watched it race by from 5 feet away. So was I - from a child's point of view, my heart was racing every time one went by so fast and so loud. Micah ended up saying he was scared. I have to admit, I was a little bit too!

We had a wonderful picnic in front of the "Washington Tournament" as Micah would call it, and we flew kites and the kids ran around. Caelan slept in the stroller most of the time. It was a beautiful day to spend in DC with friends.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Mourning this Morning

I had hoped it wouldn't happen. I had hoped maybe we could ignore the feelings we were getting. I was thinking maybe the lack of peace was just a common sense of buyer's remorse. After a tough time of praying and working through so many concerns, we decided that since we didn't have the joy and peace we felt you should have in buying a dream home ---we, sadly, stopped everything, and decided not to move after all.

You can imagine my heartbreak. I feel like someone died. Like I had a BAD break up. For those of you who know me well, you know it's definitely a loss of a dream that I had emotionally invested in this past month, possibly my whole life. But I am not without hope.

Yesterday was the hardest decision we'd ever had to make as a couple. And I am proud of us. I am mostly grateful for a strong, compassionate and courageous husband. With $10,000 down on a new house and plans to build in two weeks, with a buyer who was willing to pay almost list price, and needed a decision by noon -- most people would have been pressured to make the decision to move forward. But Patrick and I prayed, sought counsel, and by 11:45 a.m., he called me with tears that I had never heard before. He said to me that he was so sorry that he couldn't get me this house I wanted, and that being the leader of our family means some times you make the unpopular decision. He felt that we just couldn't move forward when we didn't have the peace to do so. And what brought me to tears is that he said, "When we get to heaven honey, you can have my mansion. I give it to you."

I am in tears right now, as I write this. For the sadness I feel about postponing a dream, but mostly for the peace I feel in submitting to God, and to my husband for doing what I know was the right thing to do. As I started to pray and cry out to God, the beautiful thing that happened was my prayer was not about my loss of a house, or my own feelings, but my prayer was that the Lord would bless my husband, I asked that Patrick would get the blessing, because of the difficult decision he made today for our family, and that he did it because he wanted to honor God. It takes a man of strength to listen to God, and not to the world.

Now, I need to stop singing depressing Karen Carpenter songs and moping around the house, but continue to trust that God did not give us peace for a reason, and we need to seek it out. I am knocked down, but I'll get up again. I just need a little time to mourn, and then maybe a good girls night out. :)

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Buyer's Remorse?

Now that we've had a week to chew on our decision, Patrick is starting to feel the weight of this financial decision, and I am getting stressed out because he is getting stressed out. Is this too much house for us? Will our heating and cooling bill be four times as much? Can I find a better house at this value? Do we really want to leave our great neighborhood - we could stay and give more? I wonder if everyone who lays down oh...half a million dollars feels this way.

The other pressure we feel is that once we have a ratified contract on our house, the deal is done. We will own the new house. The exciting news is that our realtor called tonight and we got an offer which is a really good one, and we think others may be coming.

Patrick and I are really praying through this. It feels a little stressful, and that peace is escaping us, so we really want to examine this and do what we feel God is leading us to do. On the one hand we prayed that if he didn't want us to move forward, clearly we'd get no offers in our 30-day contingency. On the other hand, if it's a go, we prayed that the Lord would give us a good offer and quickly and it looks like that's about to happen, so why are we still feeling a little unsure?

We've done all the numbers. I guess it's truly a common case of buyer's remorse? Please pray that we sort this out, and quick!!!

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Half a Year Old!

Little Caelan is six months old today. His dad, Micah and I sang him happy birthday this morning while he had cereal in his bumbo seat. What a different baby we have - the first 4 and 1/2 months was a mostly cranky, sleepless, starving, and wailin' Caelan. Once he started taking the bottle, and learned how to self-soothe by sucking on his fingers, he began to sleep through the night! And if he's not hungry, he's really a content baby throughout the day. All my friends who've hung out with us lately say he's so EASY!

Milestones: He's eating solids pretty regularly, can sit up for long periods, reaches for toys, and cries if you take something away he likes. He loves his exersaucer and is a social butterfly, often smiling with his big dimples at anyone who smiles at him. He loves to stare at his brother, and likes to babble to himself a lot.

I'm not sure how much he weighs or how tall he is, but I sometimes get blisters from holding the car seat with him in it (yikes!) and he's starting to outgrow the 6-9 month clothing. Now is when I want time to slow down. I've definitely bonded faster with Caelan (maybe because I'm not so scared as a second time mom) but also because he's a very smiley and engaging baby. If you tickle him a little, he will laugh a long, long, time. He sometimes does that on his own to hear himself endlessly giggle in delight. Some times at night, I know I need to put him down, but I'll just keep holding onto him tighter and longer because he's so picture perfect when he sleeps. I always want him to stay this small. I hope the next six months goes a lot slower because I'm really enjoying him!