December 28, 2010

A Short Pause....

449 pictures
+60 videos
taken over Christmas
= a short break from working on my blog.

Stay tuned.

December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas!

We're waiting until probably February to send our Christmas cards out. So to tide everyone over, here is our Christmas picture for this year! Merry Christmas from Josh, Bethany & Brooklynn!

December 23, 2010

23 Months Old!

Oh! I can hardly believe how fast my little Brookie is growing up! Just yesterday she only used 2 diapers all day, the rest of the day she was in training pants and peed on the potty. She continues to make us laugh and smile. We love her. She is going through a bit of a jealousy and needy phase, I think she can sense that Gabriella is coming soon. It's hard for me to pick her up and when I do I can't hold her very long. It's hard for me and I think for her, too. I'm hoping she doesn't "grow out of it" and just decide she doesn't want to be held. I'm hoping to resume picking her up after my pregnancy.
She is also turning into quite a little bear, meaning she's basically hibernating. Today I had to wake her up at 10:30 in the morning. And her naps are still usually 3 1/2 to 4 hours. It's nice for me but I feel like all she is doing is sleeping! And then after her nap she is so cranky like she still needs to sleep longer! She started sleeping so great right around when I got pregnant. I think it's the grace I need from God to help me get through this pregnancy. I'm guessing she'll wake up earlier and take shorter naps after I have Gabriella.
We're gearing up for Christmas! Brooklynn has been so cute. Whenever she sees a picture or ornament of Santa (or even someone wearing a Santa hat) she points and says, "ho! ho!" It's so cute. The other day it was a little awkward when she saw a girl wearing a Santa hat and just said "ho!" really loud. Hopefully she didn't take it the wrong way. She has also been singing along with some of our Christmas music. The other day she was singing, "fa la la la la la la la la..." So fun. I guess she's bound to learn all this music since I've been playing it constantly.
We're keeping our fingers crossed for a completely healthy Christmas this year. Last year she was so sick and it was pitiful. I can't wait for her to open presents and actually be excited. Last year she just kept looking at us like, "you are seriously torturing me making me do this."
With that said, when this posts we will already be in Michigan hanging out with the Beans until Sunday morning. Then we'll be in Indiana hanging out with the Ashleys until we drive back to PA on Tuesday.

December 21, 2010

The Barfs

So we officially have a sick little girl. Brooklynn has thrown up about 5 times now. The first time was ALL over me.
We're supposed to drive to Michigan tomorrow so I'm hoping she's done. Getting nervous...we might not be leaving as early as we were thinking.

Cookies...or Pack?

Let's see...we were scheduled to leave around 7 am Wed. morning. I hadn't started packing yet on Tuesday. So during her naptime on Tuesday would be the perfect time to do that, right? Nope, I decided it was a better use of my time to decorate cookies. Cece was here, too, so I can't really pack anyway when they're both sleeping.

Brooklynn woke up from her nap SO SAD. I thought decorating cookies would be just the thing to cheer her up. I even forced her to lick some frosting off her fingers. When she didn't even want her cookie I should have known something was wrong.

About 20 minutes after these videos Brooklynn threw up everywhere, and continued to do so until around bedtime. I'm surprised we were able to pack at all. But somehow we managed and we left around 8:30 am.

Packing Day

So I have a dream where I go away for a week or any amount of time, really, and come home to a picked up but also CLEAN house. I haven't even started packing yet and we leave tomorrow morning bright and early. And to top it off: THIS is what Brooklynn decided to do today. (In about 3 minutes flat, none-the-less.)
Once again, I have a feeling I'll be struggling to just get packed in time, let alone actually get this place cleaned up. (Maybe when I can actually get around a little better?)

Brooklynn & Cece

Can they get any cuter? In the midst of all the mess, Brooklynn and Cece sure are having a wonderful time.

December 19, 2010

Philly Bean Christmas!

We decided to do our presents today since we're driving on Wednesday. Josh and I both work Monday and Tuesday so we took today and pretended it was Christmas so we could be leisurely all day. It was fun. We're about ready to watch "It's a Wonderful Life" to finish our day.
Yup. I woke Brooklynn up early before church. I have wanted a picture of her in her big bed anyway.
Brooklynn's first present. It's a Moby Wrap for her babies. I tried to put it on her and she was so sad. Eventually we'll get there. I know she'll love it eventually.
Brooklynn opening her presents. She was very focused.
Brooklynn loved this tiny m&ms container. We tried to only give her a few but that didn't go over so well. Finally we caved b/c it was Christmas and let her have the whole thing. I was so glad when she dumped the entire thing out b/c then she wouldn't eat them all.
All Brooklynn wanted for Christmas was a bucket. We decided to get 5 left-over 20 cent Halloween buckets and then a bigger bucket which Josh turned into Cookie Monster and we filled with cleaning toys.
Cute stuffed pig that moves and even oinks.
New puzzle! Brooklynn was so excited. She actually picked it out at the store and has found it a few times. She was pretty happy to actually get to play with it.
Brooklynn got two of my old Cookie Monsters, a Cookie Monster bucket and we even had Cookie Monster wrapping paper.

Brooklynn's cookie ornament.

I think this pack of Oreos was Brooklynn's favorite present.
Brooklynn finally got her "bug-gah!"

One Word:

OK...follow up explanation. The Beans said I just HAD to post this part.
So Brooklynn wasn't going to sleep. Josh went in to tell her to go to sleep and get back into bed. I heard some interesting things through the monitor like, "yes, you did go poo-poo" and "oh gross, Brooklynn." and it kept getting more interesting. So finally I went back to see what was going on and still down the hallway I could smell the awful stench. When I got in there Josh was trying to get her changed, etc. So we found the poop all over the wall, and strangely enough...her hands were completely clean. We're still not sure how it got on there. I'm REALLY hoping she managed to just wipe it all off her fingers onto the wall and didn't actually put any in her mouth. There was no other evidence anywhere, not on the carpet, not on the wipes of any kind. So Josh changed her and I scrubbed the wall clean. I tried to lie down in her room with her to make sure she fell asleep and didn't get up again. But she smelled too bad, I couldn't even stay in there. We had even scrubbed her hands clean, even though they weren't visibly dirty, I'm sure there were plenty of germs on there.
We still aren't sure exactly what happened. She does reach down her diaper all the time. Actually yesterday I went to change her diaper and she had poop on her hands again. I'm starting to be completely grossed out by my own daughter. This happened on Sunday and Tuesday she threw up about 6 times....I am almost completely convinced it really was from eating poop and it just took a few days to set in. Gross.
And a side note: think about how good that makes me feel when she won't eat her dinner. Like it's even GROSSER to her to eat my cooking. Thanks, Brooklynn. Thanks a lot.

Kid's Worship

Brooklynn had her debut singing in front of church today. She did better than we thought, although very similar. Deer in headlights staring, didn't really sing or dance. She DID lift up her dress for part of it and then eventually sit down and climb around on the bleachers. But she didn't cry or freak out and she looked adorable.

December 18, 2010

My Half Birthday

I turned 32 1/2 today. We celebrated by having 1/2 of a cake (which wasn't even that good.) Josh and Brooklynn sang me 1/2 the song of "Happy Birthday." Good times.

December 17, 2010

Give it Up for Mary

So I read Brooklynn the story of Christmas today at naptime. I was reminded of so many things I admire about Mary.
First of all...besides having to give birth in a stable in the hay (all pretty impressive), what really floored me was riding on a donkey for a long distance while 9 months pregnant. I would NOT have been ok with any of that. Perhaps that is why God picked her.
I'm especially dreading the long 10 hour DRIVE in my cozy, warm car while pregnant. I don't know how she handled donkey-back. Not fun. And then we have the nice feature of once we get there to relax and be comfortable in a nice warm bed. Nope, Mary went straight to the stable and then she had to give birth. In a pile of hay.
I'm counting my blessings this Christmas. And even though I can sort of relate to Mary, just a little bit because I'm pregnant and travelling...she had it worse. Then again she probably got just a little bit of extra pain relief sent from God because it was His son. (my guess...?) Maybe she was one of those really easy births that it didn't really hurt that bad and it was quick and relatively easy. I would hope so. I can't wait to ask her about it someday.
Also, I still have a month (and maybe a little more) to go.
So good job, Mary. Not only am I grateful to you for birthing Jesus, but you did the whole thing without complaining. (at least that we know about.)
Then again, according to the song "Away in a Manger" Jesus was a great baby and a great sleeper. And He also was the perfect son. He probably didn't even ever throw a temper tantrum. Maybe I would take the birth in the hay.

My Cookie Monster

Josh told me a cute/funny story about Brooklynn from their date night on Tuesday.
So he took her to Qdoba. He asked her if she wanted a cookie (one of the ones by the register that are wrapped in plastic wrap) and of course she was like, "cookie! cookie!" Then he handed it to her and she just kept looking at it with this confused look on her face like, "what is WRONG with this cookie? I can't eat it like this!" I forget this part of the story, maybe he was getting his drink or something but he looked away for a second and then when he looked back the entire thing was completely squished and crumpled up inside the plastic wrap and she showed him with a look of triumph a small piece of the cookie in her hand like, "I DID IT!!!"
(My original guess was that she bit through the plastic wrap because this summer we were paying there and she took a brownie without my knowledge and bit it through the plastic! We had a nice cashier who said she could just have the rest of it.)

When Did Brooklynn Grow Up?

So Brooklynn is singing ON STAGE in church on Sunday. I keep thinking that she is too little. She'll probably try to climb off the stage or something. I kinda can't wait to see what happens.
Her class meets with all the other classes every week to sing and worship. When I went in the couple of times she just stands there staring, but then at home she does a few of the motions. It's really cute.
I just ordered the CD that they used. One of the songs is on there but the other isn't. We keep practicing and I have a feeling she'll do better than I think. She also really likes two other songs. But at the same time she gets REALLY mad at us when a song comes on that she isn't in the mood to hear. She has even mastered turning it to the song she wants to hear on her CD player. One is track #3, one is #4 and one is #17. She'll go over and push the buttons until it's right on that song. I'm floored at how she knows when to stop (especially for #17) because I never hear the wrong beginnings of the songs. She must know all her numbers, too.
Here she is having a temper tantrum because it's not the song she wanted to hear.
This is one of the songs they're singing in church. She isn't cooperating too much for the camera.

December 16, 2010

Going to See Santa

Well, she finally did see Santa. She never did tell him what she wanted for Christmas, I hope she still gets some stuff! She did do a lot better than I thought, though. Didn't even cry! She didn't smile AT all, though.

And of course, right afterwards, she smiled it up big for the camera.
We stopped to get a pretzel after we were done.
And then we saw this amazing horse store. They actually move around. I totally want one.

December 15, 2010

My Naughty Monkey

Brooklynn started doing this the other day. OVER AND OVER AND OVER.

December 14, 2010

My Top-Ten Pregnancy Wishlist for Santa

I have quite a wishlist of things I would love to have. Sadly, I don't think most of them have been invented yet. Maybe in Santa's workshop he could rig a few things up for me.

1: A pair of maternity jeans with the super soft elastic, ALSO with a sweet drawstring around the bottom part so they actually stay up.

2: A pregnancy sink. (let me paint the picture here: I can't reach the faucet to rinse when I'm washing dishes, without stretching way past my normal ability or having the sink dig really hard into my belly. I want something shaped sort of like a crescent moon so it's rounded in the front. Then my big belly fits so nicely and I can go on washing dishes without cursing like a sailor in my mind.)

3: LONGER MATERNITY SHIRTS!!! I have a long torso, it's ridiculous that most of my maternity shirts would still barely cover up my belly when I'm not pregnant. My belly hangs out 98% of the time. And it's COLD.

4: One of those grabby hook things. I could even install it right on my cane. (now I do know these exist. Usually in the toy section of the stores.) You squeeze a trigger and this claw thing closes so you can grab stuff several feet away from you. This would be extra nice for cleaning up after Brooklynn, or when I drop something 80 zillion times a day.

5: A mattress identical to mine, except with a nice hole cut out of the middle so I can lay FLAT on my stomach. (Obviously I'll be wanting my old one back after delivery--maybe they have a loan program?)

6: Two words: Grocery Delivery.

7: Hoverboard. I'm not too good on skateboards. I basically want to be able to get out of bed and not have to move my legs. At all. And sort of float through the air. (A programmable feature is an extra bonus, like to the bathroom. That way I don't even have to open my eyes in the middle of the night.)

8: A anti-inflammatory drug like Ibuprofen that is safe to take during pregnancy. The doctors keep telling me it would help with my sciatica.

9: A pill you can take right when you go into labor so you can just have a nice, relaxing nap the entire time. Then you magically wake up the instant the baby is born so you don't miss that part.

10: A maid service. I'm so tired of cleaning up 5 times a day and you can't even tell.

Thank you, Santa. I'll be waiting patiently on Christmas morning!

Gingerbread 2010!

It's gingerbread time! This year was much better than last year. Brooklynn was fully healthy and so much more excited to help. Last year she had fun but I feel like I forced her a little bit to eat some frosting to get a few pictures.

Brooklynn helped to mix the dough. What a good helper.

I let Brooklynn lick the beater. She was so excited.

Brooklynn was very excited when she thought she could get "free refills" on her beater with all this extra dough.
Brooklynn helping roll the dough into the mold.
I highly recommend using some sort of string to hold your house together like this while you wait for the frosting to dry. After several cave-ins...we will not be using the recipe for this particular frosting again.
Brooklynn posing by our completed, un-decorated house.
Brooklynn can hardly contain herself waiting until after I take this picture. Josh is getting pretty good at faking the strain on his face from having to hold her so still.

All of our decorations!

Brooklynn was very focused on putting the decorations on. Especially the cookies. She kept going from extremely focused to yelling, "COOKIE!!!"

Silly Brooklynn!

Brooklynn does this pose to our tree all the time, too. I think it translates to, "I REALLY love this. Please take my picture by it."

Brooklynn did the chimney all by herself.

Brooklynn and Mommy. (If you click on the picture you can see frosting and crumbs all over Brooke's face.)

Daddy and Brooklynn

I'm pretty sure Josh had the most fun of all. Here you can see him in front of his pond, snow on one side and fire on the other.

Our finished product, each side.

"Just a little bit lower, Brooklynn"
"The decorations go ON the house, not IN the frosting."
"Don't eat our stone path, yet!"
"Stop eating the dough. You already had a beater."
"Really, Brooklynn? We JUST put that pretzel tree on there and it's already in your hand."

Guess why Brooklynn had SO much fun?