Friday, February 27, 2009

Transition Time

We're still waiting to hear from our lender if our closing date on the new house is March 13, but so far as the realtor knows, that's what we're still shooting for. So we've reserved the truck, and we'll just change it if we have to. I'll be thankful to know for sure what we're looking at as a closing date... and at the same time, part of me will want to have a heart attack because it's all coming up already! :)

Saturday night some of our good friends are having a going away party for us and the Prestons. It's a little bit strange to think about the fact that, in just a few weeks, we won't be seeing all these people every week or more. There are SO MANY people we will miss terribly! While it's very sad, on a different level, the fact that we literally have hundreds of friends with whom we've connected in less than four years is an AMAZING blessing from the Lord! I cannot even imagine what our lives would have been like without our church family here! There is also a certain level of comfort that comes from knowing that our time on earth is short compared to the eternity we get to spend in heaven with these brothers and sisters in Christ!

Quite honestly, I think I would be crying every day if I wasn't so sure that we are indeed following the Lord's call on our lives and if we didn't have such a great team to labor and share life with as we plant this church.

Ladan has started clinging to his friends even more over the last few weeks. He does well with transition in most cases, but he's definitely going to miss his friends and his teachers at church. It's sad for me to see him have to leave his friends. The great thing is that he will likely be the one telling me that everything is okay! I would like to try as hard as I can to get the boys together with at least a few of their friends for a fun play time before we go... a time when it's focused on THEM having fun (as opposed to them having to be "quiet and controlled" while the adults get to have fun). Now we just need to pray for a decent weather day so we can give them some room to run!

As I've been packing and sorting through things, I've gotten rid of some of the boys' things. Before I get rid of each item, I let Ladan know what I'm doing and why we're getting rid of that particular item. Today, I was throwing away this random project he made one day, and when I told him what I was doing, he asked what was wrong with it. He asked if it was dirty. I told him it wasn't dirty but that we just needed to get rid of it. He suggested that I get rid of part and save the other part. I explained that it wasn't really going to work that way, and he quickly and happily agreed, "Oh, well, that's fine. Just throw it in the trash." I mean, seriously, he's awesome! It's like he just appreciates knowing what's going on and why, and that's all he needs. I'm not taking it for granted, that's for sure! He is LOVING the process of packing and is a great help to me! He brings me boxes, hands me things that are out of my reach to put in the boxes, gets me the tape/marker, and gives me a high five or a huge hug every time we get another box packed and closed.

Gabe has been really great too. He is clearly addicted to the movie, Cars. I know my two-year-old should not be addicted to a movie, but if you were moving and could see the way his face lights up every single time he gets to see it, you might not argue about it too much either. He has memorized many parts of the movie and recites them before they're coming up. He also plays with his cars at other times of the day and acts out scenes from the movie. Speaking of reciting movie lines, one of his favorite things to do is recite the entire Ring of Fire scene from Finding Nemo with Chet. It's hilarious, and I MUST get it on video!

When he wakes up in the morning, he plays quietly in his bed for a few minutes. As soon as I open the door, he jumps up and down in his bed and screams, "Mom!" Then immediately says, "Change diaper." While we're working on that, he says, "I wanna eat oh-mee-oh an miwk" (oatmeal and milk). And while we're working on getting that ready, he says with great excitement, "I wanna watch a voovie" (movie). He's still learning what it means when I say that we can do that later. As soon as he hears me say "We can do that...", he starts cheering and jumping up and down. And then when he's sitting there eating and I'm still not turning on the movie, he's emotionally destroyed and starts crying. Thankfully he gets over it quickly. I'm trying to balance being patient--considering that he's still learning the meaning of somewhat abstract concepts--with training him not to argue and complain when he doesn't get what he wants.

He has started saying, "I wuw [love] you, Mom!" more often and has been giving the best hugs lately. He squeezes his arms around me and pats me on the back. He's a cutie, that's for sure! These kids are fantastic!

My belly is growing at a much faster rate than it did with the previous two, but I'm gaining weight a bit more slowly. I ordered a new pair of maternity yoga pants when they were on sale last week, and they came the other day. I'm fairly certain that I'll be living in these pants for the next few months. They're AWESOME!

Chet and I took a break the other night to watch Fireproof. It was really an excellent movie--very encouraging! The bonus features were definitely worth watching too.

How's that for another random assortment of thoughts and updates? I'm sure my posts will resemble this pattern for the next little bit.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Short Snip-its of Life

Okay, over the last few weeks, I have had about a million random thoughts, and quite a few things have happened. Here is an effort to bring you up to speed without taking an hour to get it all down. This list will be in no particular order of events or thoughts, because that's not how my brain is operating right now. So here's a glimpse into my head...

We are buying a house in Champaign-Urbana, IL so we can move hopefully within the next several weeks.

There's a lot to do in the next several weeks.

I have a hard time considering leaving some of my best friends in the whole world behind. But I'm thankful for the phone and internet and cars that get good gas mileage.

I'm going to miss taking long showers and not running out of hot water ever. I think that's the only thing I can think of right now that I'll miss about this apartment in particular.

I'm excited that the only footsteps I'll hear overhead are from people I have let into my own home.

I'm also excited that I won't have to hear the same song being played repeatedly (did I say REPEATEDLY?) on another person's piano at strange hours when it's not very convenient.

I'm looking forward to being in a place where the ground is flat enough that I can see the sunset on a more regular basis.

I'm going to miss going to the river and just sitting there to collect my thoughts. I'm sure there will be some other place I can find to do this kind of activity.

My belly is becoming larger by the day! I was hoping to hold off on getting the maternity clothes out of storage before we move, but I'm thinking it's not going to be possible. I am thankful I can still wear my regular jeans (not even my size larger regular jeans), but I'm thinking that's going to end very quickly.

It's going to be great to have Chet home at night and awake during the day. However, it's going to be a bit of a transition for me not to have my couple of hours every night when the boys are asleep and he's gone at work to get my own stuff done in peace and quiet.

Times like moving make me miss my dad more than normal. He helped me/us move several times. He was a workhorse and would get the job done well and efficiently. He never got mad at me for doing something that didn't make sense (like putting a box down right in the middle of the walking path), but he did make plenty of jokes about it! When I asked him to do something, he'd always say in his monotone voice, "Yes, dear," and tried to communicate to Chet that this was a helpful thing to say. I wish my dad could help us move into our first house and that he could see the boys get really excited about their new basement, back yard, and bedroom. I wish he had been able to meet the boys in the first place. He'd be really excited for us, I'm sure... that is, if "excited" is the right word to describe my dad at any point! The Lord knows best. I think Dad would for sure be proud to know that we used the money he left us to get through seminary and that we're starting a new adventure without any debt (aside from that massive home loan we're taking on, anyway).

I finished a book called Always Too Soon to Quit by Nancy Bramlett last week. It was good. It was also nice to finish a book.

I need some time to shape my eyebrows. I feel like they're taking over my forehead. I'm thankful I don't have a unibrow, or I'd be in trouble.

I love my family. I'm really proud of Chet. Ladan is getting huge (he's grown another 2 inches and gained 5 pounds in the last few months) and is so smart and thoughtful. Gabe is still tiny, and I'll be glad when his cuteness factor wears off a little bit more so I'm not constantly second-guessing myself when I'm giving him direction or training him.

I'm very THANKFUL that Amber (my sister-in-law) learned that kids like Titus (my nephew) and Gabe who are super-active often have skin issues because their bodies use up all of their vitamins when they're running around and they have nothing left for basic health. They apparently also need extra omega-3's. So we put Gabe on an immune booster and an omega-3 supplement on top of his Flintstones, and within 2 weeks, ALL of his eczema and weird wart things were TOTALLY gone!

Gabe then got a bacterial skin infection somehow. He had to be put on his first antibiotic (well, if we wanted him to be able to be around other kids instead of stuck at home for 2-3 weeks). It's been 3 weeks, and it's almost all completely faded. Within the next week, he should be back to that baby-soft skin kids are supposed to have... as opposed to alligator- or snake-like skin.

I get very irritated that the Sports Illustrated swim suit issue is displayed at the check-out counter without the paper "modesty" cover it used to have. For the next month at least, please beware. It's everywhere! And it's not at all helpful for any person to see it.

Thanks to Judy, I got my chocolate-covered strawberries last weekend!!!!! Excellent treat!

We had a great time serving dinner at the Ronald McDonald House with our small group a couple weeks ago. If you've never done it, you should give it a shot. If you have done it, you should do it again. Good times!

I don't really like that my dreams seem to get crazier and more vivid when I'm pregnant. I could really do without that. It kind of freaks me out.

I've had fun figuring and refiguring our finances during the last few months. Excel spreadsheets are my friend. (FYI--I know that last sentence isn't grammatically correct.)

I've had the incredible urge to ride in some sort of topless vehicle (convertible, jeep, whatever) with the radio turned up... singing loudly with my friends. Monster ballads would be fun!

For some strange reason, I kind of want to watch the Oscars this year... even though I honestly haven't even heard of at least 60% of the movies, and I think I've only seen two of them on the entire list of nominated films. And I probably would get annoyed with it anyway. I just always think it's fun to see someone be recognized for hard work, especially work that I am not cut out for at all.

I'm thankful for the group of people who is committed to our church plant in Illinois. So far we have 12 adults and 8 kids (soon to be 10 kids). It seems like we'll be a good team!

I'm 15 weeks pregnant and feel MUCH better now that I'm out of my first trimester. My gall bladder is even behaving. Sure makes moving and doing all of these other things more reasonable!

This is nowhere near a million thoughts, but you can get a picture of life around here for the last little bit. We'll keep you posted!