Sunday, August 5, 2012

Summer Fun!

We've been keeping busy this summer, and it's hard to believe how quickly the kids are growing up! We went on our first family vacation (to Traverse City) and have done a lot of fun things at home (many of them inside because of the insane heat!). Here are a few of the things we did in June :)

Mabelyn discovered corn on the cob is even yummier than her beloved frozen corn! 

The water table is always a hit. . .even if Mabelyn just thinks it's for drinking. 

Splashing in Lake Michigan outside the condo we rented. 

 Someone thought it was an all-you-can-eat sand buffet.

 Building a sand castle.
 Playing football with Uncle Robert. You can tell it's been a dry summer (and that we didn't turn on our sprinklers this year).

At the petting farm with a friend.

Friday, February 10, 2012


This year, Steven started going to Cubbies (through AWANA) at a church in our area. Each week we read a couple stories out of his book and memorize a verse. He has the option of doing "extra credit" each week and doing a craft or activity that's in the book, and we generally do it.

Last week, I decided to write Steven's verse on the chalkboard in the kitchen (which had not been updated since I put a countdown to Mabelyn's due date on it and still said "Mabelyn is here!"). This way, I can work with him on his verse all week without pulling out his book to make sure I have the wording correct.

We also worked on saying it while marching, while hopping on one foot, while clapping, while spinning around and around, etc. That was especially helpful as we worked on learning the reference (which isn't required until their second year). Here he is saying it on his bed.

We also had his stuffed animals say it, and each one took a turn. As you can see, it's Elmo's turn to say the verse.

I am amazed at how easily Steven learns his verses. The different steps we are taking aren't really necessary for him, but they help Michelle learn it too :) A couple weeks ago, I decided to review all his old verses with him, and we went all the way back to early November/late October without having to give him more than the first one or two words. Way to go, Steven!

Thursday, February 9, 2012


Now that Michelle is getting older, we are starting to do more with her hair. For the longest time, we just kept it in puffs because that's pretty much all I knew. When I was pregnant, I suffered from hyperemesis, and I could barely brush/wash my own hair without throwing up, so I didn't do much with Michelle's hair either (other than to attempt to trim her hair that ended badly).

I recently discovered the site Chocolate Hair/Vanilla Care (and the corresponding Facebook page), and we have been busy trying new things. Michelle started using a sleep cap (much to her dismay at times), and we're experimenting with different creams and oils. We've also started using beads and snaps and clippies.

One of our first styles--braids with clippies

Rope twists with beads

Rope twist yarn extensions with beads

Faux french braids

Doing Michelle's hair takes a lot of time, and since I work on Saturdays, we're starting to do it during the week. To be honest, it can be exhuasting at times, and if I'm not careful, I get frustrated with both her and her hair. Keeping her hair in puffs would be easy, and we still do them occasionally, but I know that it means the world to Michelle when we do her hair in fancy new styles. I want her to be proud of her hair and to appreciate the hair that God has given her, so we do fancy hair. And someday, if Mabelyn ever grows some hair, I'm sure I'll be putting beads and braids and twists and clippies in her hair too :)

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

It's Been a Long Time

I can't believe how long it's been since I last posted. Our tiny little peanut isn't so tiny any more, and the older kids are getting way too big. I don't think I'll try to cram everything we've done into one post, so I'll just upload some recent pictures :) Hopefully I do better this year about updating my blog (assuming anyone is still interested!).

Making Kool Aid Playdough

At Grandma and Grandpa's House


Celebrating Michelle's Birthday

Matching Church Outfits

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Monday, April 4, 2011

One Month Old!

It's hard to believe that Mabelyn is one month old today. Just in the past few days, we've seen a lot of changes in her. Her cheeks are filling out, and she's awake for longer periods of time. I need to get some updated pictures because all the ones I've taken in the past week or so are while she's sleeping, and I'm sure that grandparents would like to see pictures of her very blue eyes.

I'm finally starting to feel like myself again, and it helped that I was able to wear my old jeans again on Saturday :) Of course, they are low rise and were a bit big before I got pregnant, but still! It's nice that my incision area isn't hurting as much anymore--it hurt to wear even maternity jeans for a long time because it was all so sensitive.

Steven and Michelle have adjusted well to Mabelyn, and they both like to "help" with her. Steven loves holding her, even if she's crying, and Michelle likes to burp her and help with any bottles she may get. So far, I haven't gotten the sense that they are jealous of her at all, which surprises me. They have acted out, though, especially after the last family members left and Mark went back to work. It took a while to reassert myself as an authority figure and let them know that Mommy's rules are back in effect after several weeks of grandmas and Daddy being in charge. Overall, though, they are doing better than I anticipated. It's definitely been easier going from two kids to three than it was going from one to two, and I think part of that is their age and the fact that they have each other to play with while I take care of Mabelyn.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Introducing Mabelyn Elizabeth!

Mabelyn was born on Friday, March 4 at 8:30 a.m. via c-section a couple weeks early because of low fluid/possible placenta problems. She weighed 5 lbs., 13 ozs. and was 18" long.

Thursday, February 24, 2011