Thursday, February 24, 2011

What They Wear - Assignment 4

My man wears a uniform every 3rd day when he's at the fire station. But when I really think about what he wears, his boots come to mind. You can almost always find him in these boots. They are dirty, stained, and scarred from work. But that is what I love about them. They remind me of the things he loves to do and how hard he works for his family.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Valentine's Day

(* The next few posts will be all out of order since I am playing catch-up after the crazy week we had)

Audrey had a Valentine party at her preschool. She had a great time picking out the valentines and goodies to hand out at school. My big girl even helped to fold them and put the stickers on them.

With a little assistance, she even wrote her name on each one.

On Valentine's Day morning, Corey and I gave the girls their little gifts. We don't give candy to them for Valentine's Day. We try to find something small and useful that they can enjoy.

They had fun opening cards from Mommy and Daddy. Both girls had an added bonus too, Grammy sent cards with stickers included.

Addison got a book on farm animals. She loves to look at books!

Audrey got a travel size Magna-doodle. Those are wonderful for car rides, especially lengthy ones.

And a few days before, Grammy sent the girls Valentine PJs. They looked so adorable in them and loved wearing much that Audrey wasn't happy when I told her that they had to be washed :)

Monday, February 21, 2011

What They Do...Assignment 1

This assignment is supposed to show what our loved one does. My handsome man is a firefighter/paramedic. He has been doing this since we began dating. First as a volunteer, then as a paid firefighter.

The girls love to go visit Daddy at his fire station. Sitting in the big trucks never get old for them.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Everything Changes

This has been one of those weeks. One of those weeks that is pivotal in one's life. One of those weeks that changes EVERYTHING.

The last seven days have brought emotions that range from happiness and laughter to heartbreak and mourning. I am drained, exhausted, and emotionally spent.

On Saturday, February 12, 2011, my Pawpaw passed away. One of the greatest men I know was called home to our Heavenly Father. Although I know that he is in a better place, my heart still breaks at the fact that I won't see him again this side of Heaven and that my children will not know him the way I knew him.

This crushing event began the domino-effect of emotions and events that take place the next several days.

The following Monday, February 14, we gave the girls their Valentine's gifts, hoping that it would provide them with a little happiness on this difficult day. Then we traveled the 2 hours back to my hometown to prepare for the visitation for my Pawpaw. So many tears were shed and hugs received. Late that night we all finally crashed in the bed red-eyed and exhausted.

The next morning, Tuesday, February 15 was such a mixture of emotions. It was supposed to be one of the happiest days of the year. Our sweet Addison was celebrating her 1st birthday. As a mommy, I'd been having a difficult time with my baby turning 1. The year has flown by and I was just trying to get adjusted to the fact that time was slipping by so quickly. But on this particular day, I tried to be excited for our sweet girl. We actually had "birthday muffins" (a family tradition) that morning complete with a candle and the "Birthday" song. And I I cried. I cried because my baby was growing up. I cried because I miss those sweet newborn days. I cried because I long for those nights of rocking her to sleep on my chest. And I cried because, in just a few hours, I would be burying my Pawpaw- on my baby's 1st birthday. I was an emotional wreck!

My brother celebrated his birthday the following day, February 16. I'm not sure how "Happy" the day was. We were all still walking in a daze. Missing one of the most important men in our life. We were all there for each other, and knew we had to find our new "normal". But where were we to begin?

Thankfully, I had things to keep me busy the next couple of days. Audrey went back to preschool, and errands and grocery shopping had to resume.

Then Friday, February 18, my mom came up to help with the girls while I prepared for Addison's birthday party that was to take place the next day. I'm so glad she was there because the night before, Addison began running a fever which continued in full force all day. She was clingy, whiny and needy. If mom hadn't been there as an extra set of arms to love on Addison, I wouldn't have gotten anything accomplished. I think loving on the girls was good medicine for Mom as she was dealing with the loss of Pawpaw as well.

Saturday morning, February 19, we woke to a beautiful, warm, sunny day. Such a perfect day for a party. But poor Addison was still running a fever and feeling just pitiful. Tylenol nor Advil would touch that stinkin' fever.

We still celebrated. Friends and family came from all over to watch Addison blow out her first candle, dig into her first cake, and open her birthday gifts. She tolerated the festivities, but I could tell she didn't feel good at all. We quickly did the cake and gift thing, then I put her to bed while the older children enjoyed some playtime outside. The adults had a good time visiting with one another.
Although there was laughter and smiles, there was still an empty feeling without Pawpaw being there. It was good for the family, however, to be together for a day of happy celebration.

So, this week was one that changes everything. It included celebration and sadness, laughter and grief. Because of the events of this past week, my life will not be the same. And as long as I live, it is one I will never forget.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Photography Project/Assignments

This month I am attempting to participate in a photography class/project going on at Willette Designs. It is The Joy of Love, part of her Finding the Joy series.

So, along with my daily normal chaos, I am attempting to work on this assignment. I'm already behind because the hubby and both kiddos have been sickly. Since they are to be part of my subjects, it is kind of difficult to get them to participate. And it is even more challenging to take photos with a super-whiny baby on my hip.

I will get to the assignments, probably somewhat out of order. But stop by to see what moments of JOY and LOVE I can find through the camera lens.

Friday, February 4, 2011


Several blogs and articles that I have read recently encouraged one to choose a word that reflected what he/she wanted to achieve/work on/gain throughout the year. Some mentioned that they chose grace, love, health, etc. So, since I'm not all that great with sticking to my "New Year Resolutions", I decided that this would be a wonderful way to develop something that I needed in my life.

I spent many hours, seriously, contemplating what needed to be my "word of the year". After much thought and reflection, I knew that my word would be "PLAY". That's right. Weird, I know. But I realized that "PLAY" is what I needed more of in my life.

Hello, my name is Heather, and I am a recovering perfectionist. And I take everything very serious.

Some may not see me as that, but I used to spend much of my time worrying about something not being perfect or up to some one's approval. Because of that trait, I ALWAYS thought I needed a spotless house, laundry caught up, perfect grades, students and parents who thought I could do no wrong, pictures taken just so, get the point.

After miscarrying our first child, I was determined that I would worry and stress less. Once I gave birth to our adorable Audrey, I vowed to work on not having everything "perfect". Honestly, I did pretty good with that resolution. (Just come look at my house :) )

But, I still took everything so serious in life. EVERYTHING. Now, I can laugh and have a good time (sometimes), but work, chores and such HAD to be done. When they aren't my nerves begin to unravel.

Then, God blessed us with another bundle of joy, Addison. With her birth, a whole new world opened before me. I became a "work at home" mommy. I gave up my 8-5 office job, and began working on contract from home for the same employer so that I could continue to work for the income as well as get to be home with my babes. Yes, I was/am very blessed to be able to have the best of both worlds...but it continued to make me handle things so seriously.

Of course, I was home with my girls 24/7 and we had lots of fun together. But I frequently found myself telling them, "I can't play/read/snuggle because I have to work/wash clothes/put up dishes...blah, blah, blah...

When thinking about my "word" it hit me that I didn't want my brief, fleeting time at home with my little ones to be overtaken by the "I can't because..." syndrome. It defeats the whole reason for me being home.

So all that rambling to say...I am working really hard to PLAY more. And that is very difficult for me! By making a conscious effort to stop what I'm doing/worrying about and PLAY with my girls, I'm hoping it becomes a habit. I'm hoping to learn to laugh they way they laugh, love they way they love,and imagine they way they imagine.

In the end, we may be overtaken by dirty clothes and dishes, eat lots of PB&J sandwiches, and have lots of dust on our shelves...but I want to look back and know that my time with my little girls was well spent and that I have no regrets.

As I was thinking about this post and writing it. I hopped over to my dear friend/role model Nan's blog post for today here. And WhaLaa! I think she wrote this just for me. It spoke deeply to my heart. After shedding a few tears, I knew that God wanted me to learn to PLAY. So Nan, thanks for helping me, once again, put my life into perspective.

Now, the girls are finished napping...time for me to go PLAY!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Audrey's Artistic Talents

Audrey was in the bathroom a bit longer than usual...and very quiet. So I decided to check in to see if she was okay.

This is what found...

Audrey had used toilet paper to create a masterpiece on this towel. She figured out that the tissue would stick on the towel by itself. (smart girl!)

According to Audrey, this is a picture of a dog. And you can tell that she was very proud of her handiwork.