Shepherd 29 Weeks!

We got to see our boy on Monday! Everything looked like it should. His measurements show that he is weighing 3lbs 9oz already! (average for this point is 2.5 lbs). Looks like he will be a big boy. Unfortunately, that does not change my due date.....still looking at March 11th.

Keep praying for our boy!
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Potty Training - Day Two

......went a lot better than day one.

Here's why...
-I woke up early and spent time with the Lord before I got the girl up
-I changed my perspective and goals. I realized this is a lifestyle change. I know one day there will be more success stories than accidents and that accidents are part of the training.
-I realized this is one more way I can love my girl by helping her learn to grow

Here's the highlight of the day...
-The day started and ended with success!! (tomorrow we will work on the in-between)

Here's to day Three!

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Potty Training - Day One

......was exhausting

Here's the Highlight of the Day:
-LK went poopoo once on the potty today

Here's what I've learned today:
-LK teetee's every 2-2.5 hours
-LK will go teetee on the potty ONLY when she decides she wants to
-LK is not going to be the child who is potty trained in a day, it's going to take a while

Here what I'm unsure of:
-Whether to use the big potty(w/little seat fitted on) or the little potty (I let her pick one, neither had success)
-Whether to use cotton training panties or pull-ups (today we used panties except during nap/bedtime)

Here's what I need advice for:
-She would sit on the potty for up 15/20 mins sometimes and not go. So we'd put the panties back on and set the timer to try again in 10 mins. Within 5 mins of being off the potty she would go in her panties. How do I fix this???

Here's to day two......(encouragement gladly accepted)

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Laura Kate didn't want us taking a picture without her....

We got one though!

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It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year

Today we started the Christmas Season in our home. We decorated, made wassail, celebrated the first day of Advent, sang songs, prayed and welcomed the season of celebration for our Savior's birthday!

Kyle making the wassail

Me (and Shepherd) putting the tree together

The Decorated Mantel

The Little Helper

Lucy loves Christmas and has already found her spot!

The Tree

Tree Top

The Table
(light was bad, I'll try to get a better one later)

This is our first year to have an advent wreath. LK lit the first candle tonight. Looking forward to the tradition to remind us daily of the reason for the season.
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A Thankful Heart I Give

I am thankful for:
  • Jesus, most of all
  • My husband, who loves me, protects me, leads me, helps me, shows me Godly character and is an incredible picture of Jesus to Laura Kate and one day Shepherd.
  • Laura Kate Wiley who brings me joy and adventure
  • Shepherd Andrew Wiley who delights me already with movement and excitement in the days to come.
  • Family who love me for who I am
  • Friends who are always there
  • My church, where I learn more and more about Jesus and how to live a Godly life all the time, where I find community and accountability and consistency.
  • My home, where we grow as a family
  • And I am thankful for life, every day

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A Happy

Because it's Tuesday but feels like Monday, here's a happy to brighten your day....

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Shepherd's Crib!

Shepherd has a crib! or at least it's on the way!! I am so excited about it...

sturdy, slick, 5-in-1 convertable, black.

***Thanks Grammy and Papa!! ***

Delta Soho 5-in-1 Convertible Crib - Black - Delta  - Babies"R"Us
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The Day My Snuggie Saved My Life

It's true....I used to be a snocker (a snuggie mocker), and really at the heart of it, I still am.

But one day, my sweet husband decided to surprise me, just because, with a Texas Tech snuggie. I admit, I was won over. Maybe there IS some benefit to a blanket with sleeves (other than the fact you could just turn your bath robe around backwards). It was too much to give up making fun of it, so I just mock myself every time I use it....wear it? (do you use or wear a snuggie?)

Then, there was the day my snuggie saved my life.

You just think I'm exaggerating.

We were in Lubbock. Visiting. About this time last year (can you imagine the past year without me here? well, just thank my Snuggie you don't have to). On a Saturday morning, Kyle had a coffee meeting with a friend, my dad had a previous commitment and so I could sleep in, my mom decided to uphold Kyle's donut date with Laura Kate. The perfect plan......everyone else accommodating my sleeping needs. A beautiful, beautiful, plan.

We just forgot to factor in one thing: my parents and my extremely needy dogs. That morning (and that morning alone) did I decide to be cat person. You see, cats will curl up on your chest or snuggle up right beside you and start purring. Dogs have fingernails that make noise on the hardwood floor as they run to your sleeping bedside the moment they realize you are the only warm body in the house. Dogs have loud, playful, annoying growls as they play with each other on the floor right by your head. Then they decide that's not annoying enough and they start whining by your head when they decide they need to go to the bathroom (gah, curse nature! couldn't they wait an hour???). After 15 minutes of extreme irritation, I decided to end the madness by taking them outside.

It was early. 7:20 in the AM kind of early (yes, that's early on my sleep-in day....and every other day). I didn't know where my shoes were on my way out the door, so by the fate of the only God in heaven, I grabbed my snuggie because I knew it was 3o going on negative 20 degrees outside and I didn't want to freeze while I waited for the dogs to do their business before they ran back inside.

It just so happens that my Sookie and my mom's Gracie cannot be outside together for longer than 2 minutes before they decide to participate in mischief like running down the block away from the warm cozy house. So after they do their business and I run halfway down the block to catch them, I throw them inside, slam the door shut and wait for Gabbi to finish her business. She is always careful about where she delicately places her extriments. Did I mention how cold it was? I could see my breath, my fingers and toes turned instantly blue and I was shaking and shivering uncontrollably. FINALLY, Gabbi ran up the stairs and wagged her tail impatiently, as if to say, what are we wait for? I pushed down on the door handle, pushed and to no avail, realized I was locked out. LOCKED OUT OF THE WARM AND COZY!

I tiptoed across the frozen lawn, dog in my arms, as quickly as I could to the back gate praying the whole time it was unlocked and that someone had left the back door unlocked. Neither happened to be true. Very unfortunately, I tiptoed back to the front porch where I proceeded to sit on the mat on top of the frozen cement porch. I wrapped the snuggie around my feet and hands, pulled the dog on top of my lap for warmth and buried my head inside the snuggie. Sometime in the 20 minutes I was waiting for someone to arrive, I started thinking about my warm cozy bed and I start to cry like a blubbering idiot inside my snuggie. I was cold. I was sleepy. And I was a cat person (that day only).

Finally, my mom pulled up with my 18 month old, happy as could be after delighting in donuts, and I cried at her some ridiculous explanation to my half frozen body sitting on her front porch with frozen tears on my cheeks. After she unlocked the door,I marched inside, into my room, shut the door with the dogs on the OTHER side, and cried myself to sleep.

The other side of this story is what would have happened to me if I didn't grab the snuggie on my way out the door? Would I be whole frozen, not just half? I can only imagine how many of my fingers and toes would have survived the frost bite without the snuggie.

Still not exaggerating. Promise.

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The Night of the Giant Tiger

I love our church's perspective on Halloween. Instead of having a giant fall fest, we view it as a perfect opportunity for outreach and to plug in to our community. So, any house or homegroup that wants to host a party, they sponsor a bounce house for your neighborhood. In addition, the church also sells candy (full sized candy bars) with labels that share info about our children's ministry and invite them to church.

We've been a part of a party in the past and had such a great time so we knew we wanted to host this year with our homegroup. We were expecting a small, normal sized jumping castle. Instead, we got the most massive bounce house ever made.....the Giant Tiger.

Since her buddy Beckett decided to be Mickey Mouse this year, Laura Kate was Minnie. The ears didn't last past the first minute, but her Minnie Mouse dress was really cute. And she had so so much fun jumping. She jumped and jumped and jumped and jumped and jumped. And jumped. And then when I thought her legs would fall off, I would hear her little squeals of delight coming from inside the giant tiger and she was jumping some more.

She also LOVED trick-or-treating with her friends. She got lots of candy and really liked blowing out the candles in peoples jack-o-lanterns. :/

Here are our pictures from the night....

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Adventures of Winnie the Pooh, the Pumpkin!

Kyle carved this pumpkin tonight. I'm amazed by my husband.

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A List

1. LK loves to ask questions

2. Her favorite question is "Daddy, why do leaves fall from trees?"

3. I love that she loves the Fall.

4. Sometimes Sookie is too much for me and I put her in her house and just let Lucy sleep beside me because it is comforting.

5. Shepherd really likes grape kool aid. Really.

6. 95% of the time I have to put LK in time out, I have to turn around so she doesn't see me laughing....she is so funny.

7. 5% of the time I want to cry.

8. LK's second favorite question is "What is your favorite part?"

9.My favorite part is grape kool aid.

10. I put Laura Kate down for a nap today and asked her "what happens if you disobey and get out of your big girl bed?" She answered " You give me a french fry".

11. That was the wrong answer. I do not give her a french fry if she disobeys me.

12. mmmmm Shepherd loves french fries.

13. Laura Kate's favorite part is painting.

14. Her favorite song is "Mighty to Save"

15. Parenting is 100 times more the journey of joy, laughter, tears, heartache, prayer, and utter and complete reliance on God than I could have ever imagined.
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Friends in Books

In Rory Gilmore's Valedictorian speech, she says this:

"I live in two worlds. One is a world of books. I've been a resident of Faulkner's Yoknapatawpha County, hunted the white whale aboard the Pequod, fought alongside Napoleon, sailed a raft with Huck and Jim, committed absurdities with Ignatius J. Reilly, rode a sad train with Anna Karenina, and strolled down Swann's Way."

If you know me very well at all, you have probably picked up on a couple things: 1. I love Gilmore Girls and 2. I love diving head first into a book and getting to know new friends. Books come alive to me almost like watching a movie.

It has me thinking lately.....

What friends do I want my kids to (one day) discover in books?

So, I made a list....

Here's what I have so far....

1. Harry, Ron, and Hermione (The Harry Potter Series, J.K. Rowling)
2. Jimmy and his pet Boa Constrictor (The Day Jimmy's Boa at the Wash, Trisha Hanks Noble)
3. Christy, Katie, and Sierra (The Christy Miller Series, Robin Jones Gunn)
4. Westley and Princess Buttercup (The Princess Bride, William Goldman)
5. Sam I Am (Green Eggs and Ham, Dr. Seuss)
6. Anne Frank (The Diary of Anne Frank, Anne Frank)
7. The Boy and The Tree (The Giving Tree, Shel Silverstein)
8. Hadassah (The Mark of the Lion Trilogy, Francine Rivers)
9. Charlie and Alice (The Best Christmas Pageant Ever, Barbara Robinson)
10. Nancy Drew (The Nancy Drew Mystery Stories, Carolyn Keene)
11. Peter, Susan, Edmund, and Lucy (The Chronicles of Narnia, C.S. Lewis)
12. Anna and Kate (My Sister's Keeper, Jodi Piccoult)
13. Marcus, Kate, Lisa, Jack, Rachel, Stephen and Jennifer (The O'Malley Series, Dee Henderson)
14. Jane and Edward (Jane Eyre, Charlotte Bronte)
15. Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy (Pride and Prejudice, Jane Austin)
16. Jo, Meg, Beth, and Amy (Little Women, Louisa May Alcott)
17. Anne and Gilbert (Anne of Green Gables, L.M. Montgomery)
18. Catherine and Heathcliff (Wuthering Heights, Emily Bronte)
19. Winnie, Tigger, Piglet, Rabbit, Eeyore, Kanga and Roo, Christopher Robbin (Winnie the Pooh, AA Milne)
20. Charlie (Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Roald Dahl)
21. Wilber and Charlotte (Charlotte's Web, EB White)
22. Bob and Mr. Scrooge (A Christmas Carol, Charles Dickens)
23. Alice (Alice in Wonderland, Lewis Caroll)
24. Mary and Colin (The Secret Garden, Francis Hodson Burnett)

Did I miss any of your favorites? I would LOVE to hear your ideas and lists too! Feel free to share in the comments section or re-blog and share your blog link.
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Pumpkin Patch!

Today, Laura Kate and I went to the Pumpkin patch with Beckett and his mom. We had so much fun. We paid a small admission fee and it included a hay ride, food for the petting zoo, and a small pumpkin. LK loved the animals of course, and loved the hay ride and pumpkins, but her favorite thing was the........dirt. Yeah, the dirt. She probably would have played with it for hours if I would let her.

Here are our pictures....

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