Monday, October 6, 2014

A World Where There Are Octobers

Again, I've waited too long between posts and now I don't know where to begin with an update. 
        Life has been good, and busy, and we're blessed. I'll try to cover some things that I'm thankful for. (This is in no way a comprehensive list!)
        I don't update on facebook a lot, but when I do it's often about Zoey...our world kind of revolves around her these days.  So, these photos of Zoey at 7 months will be repeats to those of you who are facebook friends.

    Zoey is getting pretty mobile. She is very nearly least she has an idea of how to go about it, but more often she opts to just scoot on her tummy. She can get herself into a sitting position and occasionally even a standing one, depending who or what is near enough to use to pull herself up.  She has started feeding herself small pieces of food that are put in front of her, and I have yet to discover a food that she doesn't like. Basically, when she's eating, she's happy...can you tell by those cheeks?! Her hair is growing, although you could easily argue otherwise! I love watching her discover things, and learn how to's so fascinating to see her mind work. Sometimes I wonder how much more often we smile and laugh every day now that we have a little person for entertainment! She gives me lots of reasons for a thankful heart.
    At the beginning of September, we had a major wind/hail storm that really made a mess of our town. Tom spent 10 hours cleaning up trees with the fire department, to make roads passable. Other than a few trees down, there was no damage to Tom's parents property (where we currently live). However, the house we own in town had a good bit of hail damage, so we will be replacing siding and shingles, etc. For all the times I've felt that insurance is such a big black hole to throw money into, this incident has made me very thankful for it!

     Last month I also discovered what a really bad toothache is, and consequently took my first trip to the dentist. I was given the choice of a root canal or an extraction, and I chose the latter. I am grateful for modern dentistry, and the fact that a great big molar can be ripped from my mouth without causing even a little bit of pain!
     A couple of weeks ago Zoey and I spent a day with all of my sisters. We shopped a handful of thrift stores, went to Panera Bread for lunch and took an afternoon break at Cherry Berry. Kara and I have always been close, but now my "little" sisters are young ladies too, and it was so fun to spend the day together! I'm glad I have such great girls for sisters!
(yes, Zoey was pretty distracted by the frozen yogurt!)

     "I'm so glad that I live in a world where there are Octobers." L.M. Montgomery 

   While I love all four seasons, I'm especially glad that God made autumn in Wisconsin so gorgeous! I'm pretty sure I blog about this sentiment every year, but you'll just have to deal with it!Fall also gives me a reason and inspiration to do some decorating. Inspiration to decorate is a rare thing around here. This year I had fun finding DIY projects online and using those to decorate.

I had to alter some of the projects a little bit, but links to the original ideas are here:

   I hope you're all having a lovely fall...what's your favorite part of this season?

P.S. I'm also more than thankful for the man in this picture.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Traveling, Parenting, and Pictures

  It's Tuesday. And it's my first full day of being 24. Not that there's anything significant about that...just a random fact. ☺ I had a good birthday, doing normal housewife-y things, but I kept the day relaxing too. And the highlight of the day for me was a supper date with Tom!

    Ok, so it's Wednesday now, and I'm back. I've been meaning to do an update for quite a while now, so I need to check my photos to see what I need to update on.
    One thing that made July a busy month for us was a trip to West Virginia for Tom's family reunion. It was a lovely time of reconnecting with family, and making memories. However, there were a lot of miles to travel between home and West Virginia, and I think all three of us were happy to be out of the van, and back in our house! A random sampling of pictures for a taste of our week:

Grandparents and the grands:

The Dan Schrock tribe (with the exception of Ricky, who is in Guatemala) 

    Zoey turned 5 months old while we were gone, and since we're home she has caught on to rolling over...and over and over! Between that and her walker, she really gets around and explores the house! 

    She's still a mostly happy baby, although nights have been quite a bit more interrupted than they were when she was younger. I know, she spoiled me at first and now it's coming back to bite me. *sigh* That doesn't make me enjoy the interrupted nights any better! ☺
   Zoey's only 5 1/2 months old, so I might be crazy, but last night at bedtime we had what felt like our first "parents vs. baby" battle of wills. Without going into detail, I'll just say that when we finally had her settled and sleeping, I went to bed with the responsibility of parenting weighing on me like it never has before. More than ever, I realized our need of running to Jesus for wisdom. To know how to pick our battles, and how to stand our ground, yet let Zoey know that she's loved, and that she means the world to us. And if we feel dependent on Him when she's 5 months old, I can only guess how we'll feel when she's 15! ☺


 I recently mashed peas and carrots for Zoey and froze them in an ice tray for individual portions.
She didn't mind her first taste of carrots, and she sure did enjoy smearing it all over her face! 

   Pictures from a quick photo shoot I did of Zoey. Her beautiful smiles melt me!☺

A recent update to Zoey's "closet" space:

    And so, that's a bit of our life recently. It's good, it has its challenges, and we have a God who cares about every detail. Not only does He care about every detail of my life, He cares about every detail of yours, as well...don't ever doubt it!

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

From a Momma's Heart

  To my firstborn daughter:

    There are people in this world that I love...lots of people, actually, though in varying degrees of the word. 
     I love your daddy fiercely. If you're ever afraid to fall in love, the way I once was; let me assure you that if you find a man as good as your dad, there is nothing to be afraid of. 
     Find a man who is strong, but gentle. Find a man who knows what he believes, but is willing to listen to your opinions. Find a man who respects authority. God's authority, most importantly, but there will be others in a man's life who he must be able to work with respectfully. The way he respects others is very likely how he will respect you. Look for a man who tells you that you're beautiful, but who loves you for much more than good looks. You'll be so glad for a man like that when you're carrying your own first born. When you feel that you've lost all physical beauty forever, but he still tells you that you're beautiful to him, you'll know what a good man he is. Find a man who will work hard to provide for you, but one who knows that money can't buy your happiness, and that moments together and memories made will be what keeps you falling in love with him over and over. You'll need a man that you can laugh with, but one with whom you have the freedom to cry. 
    You see, that's who your daddy is to me, and I hope that you'll find a man at least almost as good for yourself some day (when you're much older, of course!).

    Now the way I love you is different than the way I love your dad, but I'd say it's equally fierce. Right now you're so little, so sweet, and so innocent. There are so many times throughout the day that I just literally feel my heart swell with love for you. I love to bury my face in your sweet rolls of baby fat and kiss your face like there's no tomorrow. Because really, it will seem like only tomorrow when suddenly you'll be a big girl, and you won't like Mommy's kisses so much. But for now, you're happy to grab my face with your little hands and slobber all over my really is the sweetest thing ever! In the last 4 months, my hands have gone to sleep more than ever before...from holding your hand on car rides, or hanging over the crib to pat your bottom until you've fallen asleep. But then I watch you sleeping and every numb hand is just so worth it...

     But the love that I hope I can best teach you about is a love for God. To be really honest, teaching you that scares me a little. Because, you see, sometimes I'm going to tell you one thing about loving God, and then you're going to see me act another thing...I know you're going to pick up on that. That doesn't mean that what I tell you isn't true, it just means that Mom's still learning too, and will sometimes make mistakes. When my example fails, I pray that you'll be able to find Jesus' example; and that's an example that will never, ever fail you. Your daddy and I are going to pray hard for the answers to the questions you'll ask, because I know you're going to ask some big ones...every child does. And someday, I pray that you will make the decision to love Jesus with all of your heart and soul and mind, forever. 
    I will love you, always and forever--no matter what, baby girl.
                                                             ~Your mommy

Monday, June 23, 2014

Four Month Photos and Playing Catch Up

   Do you know how long I just sat and pondered on what to title this post?! Ha! And the title slot is still blank...back to that later!
  Summer only officially started Saturday, but in my mind, summer is already hurtling by at an alarming pace! Since I last posted, we've taken a trip to Ontario, and a trip to Indiana, with a trip to West Virginia planned for a few weeks from now. The in-laws were home for over two weeks and left again. The grass turned green and has been mowed numerous times now. I planted my flowers and now they're blooming and looking dry and droopy by turns. The lilacs bloomed and then quickly faded, and only one bouquet of them ever graced my kitchen. And the mosquitoes...oh my, the mosquitoes descended upon Hayward, and great was the multitude of them! 
   Zoey never stops growing, and her dad never stops being an amazing dad! I love this picture of the two of them, in spite of the nasty shadows!

We've gotten Z to roll from tummy to back several times now...I think the only reason she's willing to put forth the effort to roll over is that she gets so upset when we put her on her tummy. 
"What kind of torture is this anyway, parents?"

This week Zoey turns 4 months old (already?!) so I made a goal to take pictures of her today. As is apt to happen when you make plans involving a baby, she chose today to be slightly more cranky than her usual self. Oh well, we managed anyway.

The growth rate of her hair is obviously not keeping up with the rest of her body! :)

And then of course we ended on this note, because Mommy doesn't know how to stop while she's ahead! :) The poor child is acting much the same way now while I hold her and try to finish up this post, so I should shut this down and go to give her a bath! 

Happy summer!

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

While My Baby Naps....

   I should probably go lay her down and get something done around the house, but since she's sleeping so peacefully in my lap, I'll just do this quick blog post instead.
  I think we're finally feeling a little bit hopeful about spring! The lawn is FINALLY free of snow (and needs to be raked) and I'm actually seeing touches of green here and there! 
  It's time to air out the upstairs and make the beds with clean sheets...the in-laws are coming home for furlough in just a little over two weeks! We're taking a long weekend trip to Ontario right before their return, so I want to have everything ready before we leave. I have a bunch of little extra cleaning and organizing projects that I want to do...I guess maybe it's the spring cleaning urge.
   Zoey is growing and doing what babies do: sleeping, eating, crying, smiling, and filling diapers. We feel extremely blessed to have this sweet baby in our home. We realized even more what a gift she is as we heard the news of friends losing their precious baby boy just a month before he was due to be born. 
    Zoey's had a couple of fussy days, when nothing makes her quite as happy as when I'm holding and bouncing her, but I'm hoping it's just a stage. Yesterday she cried her eyes out all the way home from Walmart while I sang REALLY loudly in hopes of calming her down. Yeah, that didn't really work.She's still sleeping wonderfully at night,  and I really love her to pieces for that! She found her hands and has started to do a bit of chewing and seems a little early for teeth, but what do I know? 
   I've been trying to take pictures of Zoey every are some from the last 3 sessions.

She's obviously a girl of many emotions! All of these in the space of a few minutes. 

I compared my baby pictures to Zoey's the other day...I'd say there's definitely a resemblance, but she's got some of her dad in her too!

    And lastly, a picture of the very happy Zoey at 7:18 this morning. Apparently she was feeling a little better about being up since 6 than I was. 

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Random Ramblings from April the 16th

     It's snowing today, and has been ever since about 7 this morning. Tom says it's supposed to keep snowing until 8 this evening, so church for tonight was cancelled. That's all I will say on the subject of the weather and our feelings in relation to it. 
     I hustled myself and my baby girl out the door this morning to do our errands in town before the roads got worse. I should be able to stay home for the next few days now, as long as I don't run out of diapers and wipes. I do realize that I am kind of a numskull  for forgetting to stock up on such important items.
      Today at Walmart I took advantage of their claim to match any ad. I feel like I'm being a big pain on the rare occasions when I do it, but since we don't have a lot of different options for grocery stores here in town, it's a way to get the good deals other stores are offering. And after you get past feeling like a pain, it feels good to save money! 
   Last night Zoey took almost forever to go to sleep. She wasn't particularly fussy, just wiggly and unsettled. I would sing and pat and jostle and just when I thought she was out, her eyes would pop wide open as if she wasn't even the least bit sleepy. I think that was the last time I will drink a caffeinated drink for supper...apparently it affects her! #mommaproblems However, there was that sweet moment when I put my hand on her tummy to calm her, and one of her little hands wrapped around my pinky finger and the other gripped my thumb, and I remembered what a gift it is to have this little girl in my life. #mommajoys
    I started a Mixbook with Zoey's baby pictures, and am having so much fun with it that I keep getting distracted from my other work. You know, the boring stuff like laundry and baking.  

     (If this has intrigued you, and you'd like to start a Mixbook of your own, use the link below to get $20 off your first order!)

     A bird just crashed into the living room's the second time that has happened this afternoon. I think it's a robin... probably blinded by a snowflake in its eye.
Zoey at 6 weeks


Tuesday, April 1, 2014

April Showers Bring May Flowers But What Do April Snows Bring?

   According to the calender, it's the first day of April. Whenever I think of April, I think spring....Since I've lived in Wisconsin for 14 years now, you'd think I'd know better than that! It would be lovely to be transplanting flowers while basking in warm sunshine on my deck, but instead I do it on my dining room floor, because it still like this outside:
   What you can't see in the picture is the snowflakes that were coming down.
   We're trying to be brave, but really...we are kinda ready for spring now.
   In other news, we are now officially parents...this beauty is parked in our garage!We'd been having some issues with our car, and knew we'd have to buy something different, but at first I was pretty opposed to the idea of a van. However, after a time or two of getting tangled up in myself climbing from the front seat to the back seat in the car, I was more than ready to go the van route! I think we're gonna love all the space, especially since we already plan to take several trips this summer!
    Speaking of parenting, I think my initiation should be complete now that I've been doused numerous times by the three P's (pee, poo, and puke). The child is an expert at knowing when her diaper is out of the way!In spite of all that, I can't help but love this little face!
     Zoey is 5 weeks old, and keeps growing and changing. She still sleeps lots, but is more alert and responsive now when she is awake. We've coaxed a few smiles out of her, but not when I have the camera handy of course! 

Sitting in Grandpa's big chair...

    A couple of weeks ago we took an quick trip to Indiana. Tom's uncle passed away suddenly from a heart attack, so Dan and Ruthie flew in for the funeral. While the reason for the trip was sad, we were so excited that Grandpa and Grandma Schrock got to meet Zoey earlier than expected! She traveled very well, and charmed everyone that she met (though she was asleep most of the time).
   Til next time....

Thursday, March 13, 2014

On Being A Mom

  I'm a mother. When did this happen, that I grew up and am now responsible for a tiny human being? 

   How can I be so in love with a person a met only two weeks ago? She fills my heart so full of love that sometimes it spills out in tears on my cheeks. And if my heart is so full of love for my baby girl, how is it that I can love her daddy so incredibly much? He is the best husband and dad that the two of us girls could ever have asked for! God has given me so much more than I deserve!

    It's not all a bed of roses, if I'm honest. Never before has anyone been so dependent on me for their happiness and well being. Sometimes it looks like endless feedings and diaper changes, but I know that even these things will be precious when I look back after she's grown, so I am trying to enjoy them now. And really, she's been making life fairly easy...most nights she's only up once! (we won't talk about last night, it seems she forgot the routine.

   I am learning to accept the fact that it will take a lot longer to get things done when there's a little one in the house. Nowadays, filling the dishwasher, straightening the house, or doing laundry feels like a pretty big accomplishment. But that's ok...these days are sailing past, and I feel an urgency to soak up every precious moment! And now she's napping, so I must fly and make the most of these precious moments, as well!

I know this seems a bit redundant, since all of these photos were shared on facebook, but for those who do not have facebook, here is a link to more of Zoey's newborn pictures:

(photo credits: Heather Kuhns)

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

{Zoey Grace}

   One week ago a little girl came into our world and changed it forever! Zoey Grace was born at 9:09 a.m. on February 25th. She weighed 7 lbs. 11 oz. and was 21" long. Love at first sight? Absolutely. After laboring for 9 hours in the hospital, I was exhausted, but the moment I laid eyes on her all that exhaustion was gone. She was here, and we thought she was perfect.

   And then we came home. Zoey was still perfect, and a very good baby, but adjustments and baby blues hit this new momma hard for a couple of days. Now at one week, I can say that life is starting to feel sane again. We're finding a new normal, which involves a little less sleep, a lot more dirty diapers, but oh-so-many sweet snuggles!
     On a side note, Zoey has the best daddy. I can't get enough of watching him dote on his little girl! Be still my beating heart... ☺