Monday, August 22, 2011

Lil Update

I have been a horrible blogger lately, and mainly just do to the fact that we are super busy and that I am worn out!

So here's a little bit of an update for now! Peter has what will hopefully be his last exam this coming Thursday! We are praying praying praying that this will be behind us after this week! His study schedule has been brutal for both him and I but I think it is just what we needed to do to help him get through this thing!

On Sunday Peter and I will pack up and leave the kids behind for a quick trip to our favorite place in the world (I will give you one guess). I am already dreading saying goodbye to the boys, but we will only be gone a couple days and we really want to have a chance to celebrate the milestone of 5 years of happy marriage!!! So away we will go and we are very much looking forward to some much needed couple time!

We are in the beginning stages of potty training Malachi. Step one has been getting him accustomed to the potty chair which has gone great. We have made such a big deal out of it everytime that he sits on it and he eats that up! Over labor day weekend we will be attempting the Potty Training in 3 Days plan! I have high hopes that he will do a great job, but if things don't go like I hope, we will wait a few months and try it again! He WILL be potty trained soon ;)

So that is about it for now. Just really really busy! Hopefully I will have a better update to share soon and if I don't get another post up before our trip, I will have a lot of pictures to share when we get back :)

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Catching Up

Well, it has been a few days and well, I am falling a bit behind with my blogging :) To be honest, I am VERY worn out and just trying to survive these next two weeks (more on that later!) These last 2 months have been very hard with Peter being consumed by his studying, but hopefully with a lot of prayer and some more hard work this will all be behind us in 2 weeks. But I seriously have NO IDEA how single mom's do it! Serious, props to you. I have Peter's help some of the time still (just not as much as I need) and this is hard!

So lets go back about a week ago. For our "Family Date Night" we went out to dinner and then headed over to a local park to let the boys play. I had a rough day and needed to get out and Malachi was very ready to get out of the house too run around! I think that is the most challenging thing about having these two so close together is that I can't get out very much by myself because they both still need me to carry them and watch them VERY closely. Anyway, that rant is over.....

Eli got to swing for the very first time, and he really loved it!

We got them both swinging for a little while and the pictures I captured pretty much melt me into a million pieces!
Then Malachi was back to running around, so I got some other pictures of Mr Smiley!

Every once and awhile Malachi would come back around and he was tickled about Eli being in the swing and wanted to stand right in the motion. Peter had to act fast several times to save Malachi from getting clobbered!

I was taking pictures of Eli and noticed that Malachi was being cute in the background, so I started snapping away!

And the photo op just kept getting cuter and cuter..........
And then it became perfect! This is love right here!

Daddy decided to play the game "scare mommy to death" that of course Malachi loves! A great picture, but I am still not a fan of the game.

Run Malachi Run! I was so amazed at how just a couple months ago we came to the park and Malachi kept falling because he couldn't handle the terrain and now here we are and so quickly he is running all over the place!

Eli tries out the slide

Getting sleepy,

And he's gone........

So impressed with Malachi's skills. Here he is climbing ALL the way up the slide, ALL by himself!

And moving along from that picture overload here is a shot of Elias chilling out on our bed!

And I find this one hilarious! If I tell Malachi to smile for the camera, this is the face he makes:

And lastly, I seriously love my coupon and survey sites. Today I just cashed out a bunch of money, enough to buy us a NICE duvet for our bed! I have been wanting a nice fluffy one for years but they are so expensive that we have just kept our cheap and not so nice one. Well, I saved up enough money and today I ordered our new one and it will be here on Friday :)

Also, getting the mail since starting my couponing has gotten to be a lot more fun! Almost daily there is something fun in it! In the last week I have gotten 3 coupons for free full size hair products from different brands and today I got the mail and couldn't believe this amazing package from Hartz dog products! Amazingly it was all free! Doggy potty pads, a full size dog shampoo, full size dog treats, a container of vitamins, a toy, and a dog brush plus lots of high value coupons. Seriously, getting good deals and freebies is FUN!

Monday, August 8, 2011

1 Year In Our Arms

1 Year ago today, we were here:

With these amazing couples:

In this very room, where we emptied that crib right there on the right (with the mouse on it!)

And held the little guy who would steal our hearts!

1 Year! How quickly things change and babies grow!

Today we celebrate the blessing that we were given 1 year ago today!

Even baby brother got in on the action!

How precious you are to us Malachi!

Yesterday we celebrated with a jam packed day at the zoo and out to Ethiopian food! Malachi had a great time playing with the water at the zoo. Maybe next year we will go to a water park :)

Taking a walk with Grandpa and Grandma

While baby brother gets some food in the tummy!

It is so hard to believe that it has been a year with that sweet boy in our arms!

Trying his first Ethiopian food!

And even stranger still at how much I miss Ethiopia today! The trip 1 year ago was so hard on me physically and I thought it would be many years before I wanted to return, but that isn't the case anymore. I really do miss my son's homeland! It was such a beautiful place, with beautiful people, and a beautiful culture!

We love you so much Malachi!

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Marriage Related Stuff

Here are some of my favorite posts from this week:

Date Ideas - Link HERE
One of my favorite marriage related websites, the generous wife has a section where people have submitted their best date night ideas and since I am such a huge fan of weekly date nights, I am looking forward to trying some new ideas in the coming weeks!

What does a healthy marriage look like? - Link HERE
This is a great post about scheduling a once a year marriage "check-up"and working on ways to improve it. I can think of many ways that I could work on becoming a better wife and hope to start implementing changes NOW!

Tiny Choices - Link Here
A great blog post that really got me thinking about how the small things really do impact our marriage. The yucky little things can build up and topple the great thing we have going.

Anger in Marriage - Link Here
This was written from a husbands point of view, but it applies to me too. I hate to admit that I have struggled with a lot of anger lately and have taken my bad attitude out on my hard working husband. So many things are "up in the air" for us right now and I am a planner to the CORE and this unpredictability of things in the future wears me out and frustrates me. The crazy thing is there isn't a single thing my husband can do to fix it (just need to be patient) and yet he is the one I get mad at. But I do hate waiting.............

The Legacy Drawer - Link HERE
It is kind of crazy how the lives of our children has made me think a lot more about being prepared in my death. This is a great part of Dave Ramsey's site that helps me know what Peter and I need to work on so if something happens to one or both of us, everyone has the information they would ever possibly need, all in one place! I am going to start working hard on getting this Legacy Drawer all put together!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

6 Months Old!

Seriously, I cannot believe this baby boy is already 6 months old! WHERE has the time gone?Isn't he still that teeny tiny little guy we brought home from the NICU!?!? I was caught up in scrapbooking this week and just could not believe that he was sooo tiny when he came home, just barely 5 lbs and looking like a tiny little fragile elf!

How quickly things change!

But alas, he really is 6 months old and I know how much he is going to grow and change in these next 6 months and I just want to enjoy every last second that he allows me to cuddle and snuggle with him! He is SUCH a little snuggle bug and that makes me very happy! Oh, and he has the most kissable, happy cheeks!

Elias continues to grow big and strong! He is now 16 lbs 3 ounces (10-25%) and 25.5" long (10%)! There were some concerns about his level of strength at his 4 month appointment but I am very happy to report that he is doing a great job of catching up with his peers! No concerns whatsoever from the pediatrician now - yay!

Look at our big boy sitting up all by himself :)

Sitting up allowed him to move in to the big boy bath seat this week!

Other milestones this month include rolling both ways now! He is also really starting to grab at everything and those hands and feet are just so interesting to look at! He chews all the time but still no teeth.

He has continued to try lots of new foods. He is actually through all of the stage 1 and stage 2 fruits and vegetables. He is eating 2 fruits and 1 veggie stage 2 per day. Most veggies continue to be a battle with him and he still gobbles down all the fruits. He is now on half frozen milk and half formula and continues to do well with this transition! This month he also tried his very first finger food of puffs and yogurt melts! He is doing so good and we are going to be adding lots of other new tastes and textures this month!

He has established a really great routine this month and I LOVE routine :) He goes down around 8:00 and sleeps for about 12 hours and he is now steadily taking 2 naps a day that are usually about 2 hours each! My pediatrician said we should probably keep the fact that we have two great sleepers to ourselves :)

We continue to love and adore this boy. We are watching as more of his personality comes out. He is a generally content, very sweet, happy little guy! He loves to watch his big brother play and is more than happy to give us a smile when we ask! He is unbelievably content most of the time!

Happy half year little bug! You are growing way too fast and it kind of hurts mommy to know you aren't going to be such a little baby boy for much longer. I am so proud of you and how hard you have worked and how far you have come from such a fragile little baby trying to play catch up to today where you are right where you should be! You are such a delight for us and I look forward to watching you grow and discover in the coming months!

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Survey Sites

I had a question awhile back about Survey Sites that I am a part of and so I thought I would share some of them. If you do join, please use the links provided below so I can get credit for the referrals! These are just a few of a BUNCH of sites that I am a part of - but this is a good start. I have a couple of others that I can send out too but I would need to send you an invite to get referral credit (yeah, call me greedy) so if you are really interested in joining other ones send me an email at and I will hook you up with a couple more :)

the first one is Crowdtap: They offer opportunities to answer questions, earn points, sample products, and make cash! The more you participate, the more opportunities you get! My very favorite part of the website is that for the money I earn, I also got to chose a charity to donate money to (I chose Charity Water). Here is the link: Girls125x125

ZoomPanel: This one you actually earn points that can go to specific items (there are a lot to choose from though). So far we have gotten a few Disney movies to add to our collection through this site. I like them because I always feel like the rewards points are good for the amount of time I put in to answering survey questions. I get quite a few surveys offered from them. Here is the link:

Survey Savvy: This one I haven't gotten a lot of opportunities from, but they compensate quite a bit when I do! Here is the link: