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Archive for November, 2012

Brooklyn is 17 months old now and is so fun to be around!

We go to school twice a week, while I teach she is in a little classroom with her friends. We love her teacher, she is very hands on with her and Brooklyn is learning so much in her care (and she secretly told me B is one of her favs…hehe, but I’m sure she says that to all the momma’s).

She is constantly “reading” or wanting to be read to. Her favorite books are: The Very Hungry Caterpillar, The Big Red Barn, and a book about piggies.

She loves animals and animal noises. She’s crazy about cats. She loves to meow, and to moo. Her Grandpa John and Grandma Brigitte have a cat and Brooklyn tries to love her, but Pasha (the cat) is not trying to have any of that. Haha, maybe one day they will be friends.

She sleeps so good at night, WOO HOO. Usually she goes to bed between 6:30-7:00pm and wakes up the next morning around 7am. Whenever we put her down if we have people over or travel out of town, people can’t believe how early she goes to bed! We love it though, she kept us up throughout the night for over a year, so I think she is making up for lost time. Ha ha.

She gives out hugs freely, but is a little more reserved with her kisses :).

She is seriously obsessed with babies. She carries her toy babies, says “hi” to babies in stores/church/etc, and always wants to “pet” them like she pets Marley.

Her vocabulary is growing daily, but here are some of her “favorite” words and phrases:
“dank you” – Thank you
“us dat?” – What’s that?
“eat eat” – she is a little piggy, she loves to EAT
“side” – Outside
“Oh no!”
“All done”
“tikey” – Kitty
“cat”
“yonyin” – London
“bitsy bitsy” – Itsy Bitsy Spider
“Me Me” – Dance with me
“Tee bee” – TV

She still loves carbs and fruit, occasionally likes turkey, peas, and corn.

She is such a social butterfly, she doesn’t really ever meet a stranger. She is constantly having “conversations” with someone, and if she can’t find anyone to talk to she will just talk to herself. 🙂

She loves to sing, dance, “run in place”, and clap for herself when she does something she is proud of.

She is curious and determined, she will try something over and over until she succeeds at it…whether it is moving something in the house like an ottoman, trying to open a door, or reaching an object.

She is reaching a stage where her feelings get hurt, and that breaks my heart. I am in her Sunday School class every other week, and if the kids aren’t interested in playing with her sometimes she will walk away from her attempt at engaging and a tear will roll down her face or she will come lay her head on my shoulder and sigh…as if she has giving up on friendships. Man, she knows how to pull on the heartstrings! Love her to pieces.

I am so thankful for her.

She is a major daddy’s girl right now. They have all kinds of fun. One of her favorite things to do is go into a room where Joseph is and as I come following along she shuts the door and says “bye bye”, as if to tell me that it’s her and daddy time ONLY! She loves to give him hugs at night before bed, and watches him leave most mornings when he is going to work, as soon as he leaves she cries her eyes out. I hope her heart is always that full of love for him.

I don’t really talk about Joseph’s parenting much on here, but he is such a good dad. He is constantly playing with her, loving on her, reading to her, and happy to help out with her when I am trying to get something done or just want to get out of the house.

I am so thankful for my family.

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I’m a big advocate of friendship. Intentional relationships.

I have not always been this way.

I spent the better part of the last few years not really opening up to many people because I feared being hurt.

Most of my childhood friendships ended poorly for whatever reason: dishonesty, different places in life, different beliefs, etc. So I had kind of reached a point in my life shortly after I entered marriage where I just figured I would never be one of those people that has ‘good’ friends. I would just interact around people when necessary and then confide in and find enjoyment in my husband/parents/siblings and I had learned to be somewhat satisfied with that.

Actually, now that I’m thinking about it, over the past almost three years of marriage, I can think of two times that we hung out with ‘my’ friends. Every other time we have been in the company of other people that aren’t family, it has been ‘Joseph’s’ friends. Which, obviously I have grown closer to over the years. I’m not really talking about casual friends. You can pick up and go to coffee with anyone and talk about the weather and what’s on sale at the store. I have a lot of casual friends.

It has really only been in the last 6 months that I have found real, true friendship. The kind of friends that you can tell your ridiculous dreams to and they make you feel like they are possible, or that you can tell your most hurtful stories and they love you through them. Those kind.

In retrospect, the world {and even church, sometimes} hasn’t offered much for what a healthy friendship should look like. We live in a feel good world, where everyone wants to just walk around feeling like they are the best presentation of themselves that they will ever be. We live in a world of acceptance with no intention for change. I am all for accepting people as they are, but there is another component of friendship that I’m afraid is dying, you want to continue to try and make yourself a better person. So many people, I feel, are plagued with contentment.

So now that I have- what I feel like is- an abundance of genuine friendships, I’d kind of like to shed light on the kind of friends I feel everyone should have, and I feel really blessed to have these in my life. I’m only going to reference four types, although there are more, and many names that I won’t mention. These are just the people that fit my examples best.

First, you need a warrior. You need someone who is willing to fight for you. By that I mean, sometimes you have days where you feel like no one is on your side. You need someone who you can dump your bad day on that will say “hey! I am here for you”. Your warrior is a source of strength when you are feeling weak. A warrior is someone with a fierceness about them that makes you feel like even if only your warrior is confident in you, no one else needs to be. My friend Christa is my warrior. She’s kind of empowering when she speaks, she’s studying Hebrew as part of her masters track for school and so she is really into words and language, which I can appreciate, so she is constantly charging me with words to remind me of the One who fights for me and goes before me.

You need a challenger. Sometimes you need someone to keep you in check. Sometimes you need someone to tell you like it is, even if you don’t want to hear it. Sometimes you need someone to spiritually slap you but tell you it’s out of love. I can’t tell you how often I need to be kept in check. 🙂 I have a little bit of a…anger issue? Hehe. I can go from 0 to 60 on a scale of fine to crazy really fast. Your challenger stops you in your tracks, tells you to grow up a little, and offers a healthier perspective than the one you’re offering yourself. My friend Katie is my challenger. She reminds me of the big picture, she reminds me to approach things with humility, she challenges me to live in truth.

You need a thinker. People like me, who have crazy analytical minds, need a friend who is willing to think with them and listen to their thoughts. You need someone to flesh out the ideas of your mind. Everyone thinks, but not everyone is a thinker. A thinker is someone who carefully considers all sides of everything, not just dumps out a thought. A thinker takes a five minute conversation and turns it into a 5 hour discussion. Natalie is my thinker. She sits with me for hours, at my house…her house…the park…and just talks life with me. We discuss anything from love, religion, spirituality, family, children, food {dessert :)}, politics, fashion, people, etc. The thing about having a thinker friend that is so important, is it creates a role for me to be needed. Discussing is a two way street, and so having Natalie in my life has allowed me to be part of a balanced friendship, we talk back and forth and mutually find enjoyment in our friendship. Which is really rare, many ‘friendships’ that I’ve witnessed or been a part of are so one sided. It’s great to find balance.

Lastly, you need a relater. You need to be in constant conversation with someone that ‘gets you’, someone that is walking or has walked a similar path you are on. They are the person that at the end of the day, they make you feel normal and validate your feelings because they experience the same things and feel the same way. The relater is often the encourager too, because they remind you that someone else is surviving and thriving in the same situations. Sarah is my relater. She is a source of comfort to me in hard times, and our similarities that constantly reveal themselves make me laugh too, I mean – we even ordered the exact same meal the other night. 🙂

The thing about these four friendships, is that lacking one throws off the balance of the others. Not everyone has these friendships, I know that full well because I have not always had these types of friends. Sometimes they manifest themselves differently, too. Somedays you may have a friend that fulfills all four of these categories. Somedays you may be lacking any of them.

When you seek out people with the intention of creating a friendship, don’t just look for people who are similar to you or for people that make you feel good. Look for people who will continually make you a better person.

I am so thankful these friends, amongst others, have been brought into this season of my life.

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