Saturday, December 31, 2011

5 Months Old

And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. 
Luke 2:10

Liam turned 5 months old on December 23rd.
  • He is wearing 6 month clothes (and working on outgrowing them). 
  • I have no idea how much he weighs, we'll find out when we go for his 6 month check-up in January. He loves to roll around the living room floor now. I'll put him in one spot and next thing I know he's rolled halfway across the living room. 
  • He has a new appreciation for his Jumparoo and loves bouncing up and down. Seriously, he'll play for at least an hour in it. 
  • We've officially started solids. So far he likes apples and bananas. He's not too sure about peas. He can't stand carrots or turkey in turkey broth. My little boy has a sweet tooth. :) I made my own babyfood with the banana the other day. And I gave him a chunk of a banana inside a mesh feeder. It made quite the mess, but he enjoyed chewing on it.
Such a happy baby!!!
Peas for the first time!
So happy in his Jumparoo.
Too much fun wears him out.
 Christmas time came quick this year. We had a CARES event at our apartments - Breakfast with Santa. Liam sat in Santa's lap and gave us his precious smile for pictures. :) Right after the breakfast, we headed out to MS. Yes, I worked Friday night, stayed awake for the breakfast, rode in a car for 7.5 hours, and then attended a Christmas party and didn't get to bed until after 11pm. I am crazy. That's what lack of sleep will do to you. We had several "Christmases" in Mississippi before heading to Alabama to see my parents and grandma. It was the first time that Mimmie got to meet Liam. Liam definitely got his fair share of great grandparents during that week!

Sharon kept Liam at night for 3 nights so I could actually sleep. It was glorious. And my mom continued this for 2 more nights. That makes 8 nights of 8 hours of consecutive sleep. I felt like a new woman. Our families were too good to us and to Liam this Christmas. Our truck was packed down on the way home. We never could have made it home with everything if we had taken my car. 



Liam's first look at the Christmas tree.
Playtime with Papa in MS
He's such a cool kid.
Great Grandparents rock.
Presents from MaMaw
Grandpa Rich and Liam
Oh Christmas tree, oh Christmas tree - I want to eat your lights.
Best present under the tree!
Making faces at GiGi
Too much fun with the grandparents makes for a tired little boy.




We came home the Friday before Christmas because Daniel had to work, and I worked that Friday night and Sunday (Christmas Day). We had 2 couples over for Christmas Eve dinner. (I can't believe we didn't take a group picture!) None of us have family around and so we spent Christmas with our Seminary Family. Liam's little friend Rizpah was over here and he started making moves on her, trying to eat her face. Such a little boy. No manners. We went to Christmas Eve service at our church prior to dinner. It was wonderful to worship with our church family. On Christmas day, we spent time as a family and that afternoon we went to see a movie. We saw Mission Impossible. It was so cool to see Tom Cruise scaling the Burj in Dubai since we had the opportunity to go there and go up the Burj just a week after he filmed those scenes. I came home, napped, and then went to work. As much as I hated having to be at the hospital over the Christmas holidays, I'm glad that I could be my patients' nurse so that I could maybe share a little Jesus with them in their time of sickness and hurting. 

I hope you and your family had a blessed Christmas and Happy New Year!

Monday, December 5, 2011

My Monthly Post...

Started writing this last month, and then worked on it again, but the pictures are having problems... finally getting it posted.

For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.  
Jeremiah 29:11
This verse has always given me comfort, especially when I went off to college. And now that I have a child of my own, I rest in the fact that the Lord has a plan for Liam and his life. I pray that Liam will grow to be a man of God and that the Lord will use him for His glory. This verse also reminds me that no matter what happens (or doesn't happen, whichever the case may be) in our life, God is in control and has planned it all out. As we wait on God and his timing for Daniel to finish classes (we thought he would be finished in May, but they aren't offering all the classes he needs so now it won't be till the fall), and for the doors to start opening for us to head overseas, we pray that God will use us in our situations and relationships here in Fort Worth.


 I have good intentions of blogging, I really do. I sit down at the computer many times thinking, "oh, I should blog about this or that" and then I get sidetracked with facebook, email, uploading pictures, making shutterfly books, watching a show on hulu, or pinterest. So blogging takes a backseat. New years resolution maybe?

 Anyway. Little Mister is growing big! We had our 4 month check up a few weeks ago and he was 14lbs 7oz and 26 inches long - and he continues to be in the 90th percentile for both. He's still skinny, but he is starting to fill out. His legs and feet are getting chunky. (Size 3 shoes fit right now, yikes!) We're afraid that his feet are going to be bigger than Daniel's! How are we going to find shoes to fit while living overseas!? Oh, and Liam is 4 1/2 months old now. :)

Some highlights and achievements of his life right now:
  • he is in 3-6 month and 6 month clothes right now
  • he is a thumb sucker
  • we are still doing physical therapy to work on his neck but he is doing so much better at holding it up (and straight) on his own!
  • we're currently working on trying to sit up without falling over
  • we tried some cereal the other day and it didn't go very well - he started coughing and choking, so we'll hold off on that for a while
  • he's still in size one diapers, but we're going to move up to size two after this pack is done - his little butt just isn't very big
  • he loves his bouncy seat, swing, and jumparoo (but he'll only play in the jumparoo for about 15 minutes before he gets upset)
  • tummy time is going well, but he still loves to just lie on his back and stare at the ceiling
  • he is making all kinds of sounds and syllables - he'll be talking before we know it!
  • still not interested in a pacifier
  • he was a knight for Halloween. mommy was his princess and daddy was his squire.
  • he has a new little friend named Rizpah born on November 13th
  • we got to spend time with his first little friend Jacob and Jacob's mommy recently (they moved right after Jacob was born) - it will hopefully become a monthly thing.
  • Friday and Sunday nights are playtime with daddy while mommy goes to work
  • he LOVES bathtime! he's going to be an amazing swimmer one of these days
  • kick, kick, kick - that's all he does, so maybe he'll be a soccer player instead
  • he's found his toes and enjoys playing with them
    I guess that's most of what's been going on in Liam's life. Which is what most of you come to the blog to hear about anyway. And to see precious pictures of course. :)

    As for Daniel and I, our life seems crazy. I really don't know where all the time goes. We start the month with an empty calendar and then before we know it, we only have a few days without plans. It's been almost 4 months now since we had a date night without Liam in tow. Not for lack of help, we have plenty of people offering to babysit; we just don't have the time for a date night. We've gotten very involved at church now that we're officially members. Daniel has been working with the men's ministry and we are part of the missions team and Greater Things team (a local outreach project). We have our life group meeting every other week on Saturday nights. Daniel has class on Tuesday and Thursday mornings and is working at the framing shop on MWF. And as for me, I have no idea what I do with my days. Haha. Seriously. The week goes by so fast and I feel like I've accomplished nothing. I love being at home with Liam though. Our home doesn't reflect the fact that I stay at home during the week, but maybe one of these days I'll learn to keep it in order. Then again, I have a child - a boy at that. It'll probably never be clean once he starts crawling and walking. Daniel celebrated his 25th birthday on the 14th. His mother was in town the weekend before so we went shopping and out to eat that weekend. And of course he got his ice cream cake from Cold Stone - a stable for all of his birthdays. I don't know what he's going to do when we're overseas.

    We stayed in Texas for Thanksgiving and a good friend of ours was invited to a church member's home and the family told him to bring friends if anyone didn't have a place to go for Thanksgiving. So he invited us. Such a sweet family and we had a wonderful dinner and then stayed and played games with the family. And then Daniel worked on a paper. It seems like that's all he does lately. But the semester is almost over!!!!

    Daniel had intended to finish his classwork here in the States this next May, but the seminary is not offering all the classes that he needs in the spring, so it will be prolonged again. Hopefully he'll finish in the fall.

    I have not started decorating for Christmas and it is driving me crazy!!! I'm ready to get my boxes out of the garage and be festive! :) I can't wait for Liam to just stare at all the lights on the tree!

    Now for pictures!
    Halloween
    Bathtime!
    Holding his head up!
    He's so cute even when he's sad.
    Sweet boy!

    Thursday, October 27, 2011

    Road Trips, Rock Climbing, and Shots

    Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change. 
    James 1:17

    Not really sure where the last 2 months have gone. Somewhere in there, Liam had his 2 month check up, we passed his 2 month and 3 month birthday, I got some great items for Liam at the JBF sale, we officially joined Solid Rock Church, we went rock climbing at Lake Mineral Wells, we took an awesome road trip to the west, and I started back to work. Those are just the big things though. Basically every day of our life has had something on the calendar for the past 2 months. I keep thinking, "life will slow down one of these days" but no sign of it yet.
    He is his father's son
    Liam continues to be a blessing in our lives, as he will be forever! He's grown sooooo much in the past few months! At his 2 month check up he was 24 inches long and 12 lbs 4 oz - making him 90th percentile in both. He got his first round of shots - 5 of them! He doesn't take a pacifier very well, but he just cried for a few minutes until mommy could hold him, then he snuggled in my arms whimpering for a few minutes and calmed down.
    poor baby - 5 shots!
    He's so alert and has started playing more with his toys - reaching and grabbing and holding on. His favorite toys are the bugs on his bouncy seat. He will sit there and stare at them and smile and then all of a sudden burst out a scream. Evidently the bugs are mean to him on occasion. He also loves his little stuffed bugs that have different textures and a little rattle in them. He's already a Bray (Daniel's dad studies bugs and Daniel has always enjoyed bugs).

    He still enjoys snuggling in his "magic blanket" that is fake wool. It's magic because he always falls asleep when we wrap him up in it. I hope we never lose that thing. He LOVES the bathtub and splashing around in the water. (click the link to view of a video of him splashing around!) He's making "cooing" noises and will talk to us when we make the sound back to him. (again, click the link to view a video) He's got very strong legs and arms - he stands really well when we help him pull up and are holding him. He's got an incredible smile that we love to see in the mornings when he wakes up. He rolled over at his 2 month check up from his stomach to his back. I was so happy I cried. He's done it a few other times too. He has torticollis and we saw the physical therapist for the first time this week. We'll do a follow up in about a week. We just need to work on strengthening his neck muscles. We're also working on tummy time with him. He's been doing so good at holding his head up, but he's not using his arms to do this and he really needs to start learning to use his arms, otherwise he'll have problems crawling. So we have a lot to work on together! And we bought him his first activity center/jumparoo at the JBF consignment sale. He's working on learning how to actually play. The first time he sat in it for a few seconds then started to cry, but we've gotten up to about 15 minutes of playtime before he gets stressed out.
    Whoa! What's this!?
    We took Liam to have his first rock climbing experience at a nearby state park. He let us climb a few routes before wanting to take a nap and crying until we pulled the hammocks out and laid in them. He loved lying on my chest and swaying in the wind. And I'll admit, I probably enjoyed this precious moment even more.  So peaceful.
    He's definitely got the hands for climbing - and the length!
     The first week in October, we took a roadtrip with our friends Erica and Adam to the Grand Canyon, Zion National Park, Las Vegas, Hoover Dam, and Santa Fe. We drove overnight to the Grand Canyon, got there in the afternoon and set up camp on the North Rim - it was about a 3 mile hike into our campsite. Liam did fantastic! It was a 17 or so hour drive out there and he slept most of the way. He loved being carried in his pack, too. We all crashed pretty early that night when the sun went down and woke with the sunrise over the Canyon. Gorgeous.
    Scenic view on the drive to our campsite
    On the 3 mile hike to the campsite - loaded down.
    Started raining as soon as we got to the campsite, but when it ended, this is what we saw.
    View from our campsite.
     The next day we had breakfast on the ridge and then went to do a hike that the guys had picked out. The only problem was that it's straight down the canyon, then you have to come back up the canyon. Erica and I  decided about halfway down that it wasn't worth it to climb back up, so we all turned around and went back out. I'm definitely way out of shape and it was so hard on my body. Pretty sure I complained a lot on the way back up.
    On the hike down
    Since we didn't spend the day hiking like we thought, we went to the lodge in the park and went out on the walkways along the canyon. Daniel and Adam decided to be daring and climbed out to the ledges. When I came walking up I saw a man taking some pictures and stopped to see what he was shooting and I see my husband sitting on rock that sticks out over the canyon. People behind me come walking up and exclaiming - "look at that man!" and I'm like, "yep, that's my husband and father to our child." We did not join him on that rock. After we left the lodge, we decided to drive out to the campsite that we had originally requested, but were denied because of recent fires. It was a drive that only a 4x4 vehicle could make and it took about 2 hours to drive 18 miles. Beautiful views though. And when we got to Point Sublime, well, we now know why the call it Point Sublime.
    On the drive out to Point Sublime
    Point Sublime
    We went back to our campsite in the dark and the next morning we packed up and drove to Zion National Park. We were at a campground "walk-in" site at Zion with a great view of some of the mountains. We didn't do much that evening when we got there other than drive around and set up our camp. The next day we took the bus to the part of the park that they don't allow cars to drive around. We listened as the CD player told us the history behind the park. At the last stop, we got off and took a short walk down back into the mountains.
    Liam was so happy to have his frog seat back!
    Napping in the tent.
    Asleep in the front pack - as always.
    After we got back from the bus tour, we drove to another part of the park and took a short hike that overlooked the middle of the park. Again, Daniel and Adam decided to be daring and took a climb out to a piece of rock that was surrounded by large drop offs.
    We saw this on our way back to our campsite that night.
    The next morning, Daniel and Adam went to hike Angel's Landing, and Erica, Liam, and I went into the town right outside the park to do some souvenir shopping.
    View from Angel's Landing
    We all met back at the camp for lunch and it started to rain. And rain. And rain. Evidently the forecast was for rain the rest of the day and into the night. I wasn't too happy about keeping Liam outside in that kind of weather and really wanted to go get a hotel. So at the last minute we decided to throw everything into the car and drive to Las Vegas! It was only about 2 hours away. We used priceline and got 2 rooms at Planet Hollywood for $60 each! We cleaned up and went out for dinner. Daniel and I got food at PF Changs and took it back to the room because we knew it was Liam's bedtime and he was going to be fussy if we tried to eat in a restaurant. Plus it was an hour's wait to be seated. We slept in our nice king size bed and had a restful evening. The next morning we drove over to the Pawn Stars' Pawn Shop, stood in line to get in for a little while, then decided it wasn't worth it so we left. They were filming inside, so they hadn't opened up the store yet. We saw all the guys' trucks parked out back though.
    View from our hotel room - and the only picture of downtown that we took.
    Pawn Stars
    We stopped at IHOP for breakfast and unlimited pancakes then headed to the Hoover Dam.

    After leaving Hoover Dam, we drove to Santa Fe. On the way, we saw a spot on the map that looked kind of cool. It was site of a meteor crater. It's the most well preserve crater in America. Their slogan "Experience the Impact". Haha. Erica and I are both nurses and we thought that was funny. We decided to stop, but it was $15 per person to get in, so we sent Daniel with the camera and he took video and pictures for us.

    We didn't do much in Santa Fe. We spent the night at a hotel and the next morning we went to breakfast at a local restaurant. Then we spent the morning walking around the square. Daniel and I decided that we love Santa Fe and could definitely live there. :) And then it was the 10 or so hour drive home. We made it back around 11pm and got home to the apartment around midnight. It was such a wonderful trip. We were so happy to spend time with our friends Adam and Erica and I'm so glad that Liam did so well! His doctor wasn't very excited that we were taking him camping, but he did just fine.
    See how happy he was to go on our trip! 
    And then that next weekend, I started back to work at the hospital. I'm working Friday and Sunday nights only as weekend staff. I'm so blessed to have a job that worked with me so that we didn't have to get daycare for Liam. It's hard because I can't really sleep before I go to work on Fridays since Daniel is at work and Liam doesn't take long naps anymore. And Mondays are difficult too because Daniel goes to work when I get home. But I sleep when I can. Moms are made to go on little to no sleep, right?

    Monday, September 12, 2011

    Blessed

    "Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior are the children of one's youth. Blessed is the man who fills his quiver with them! He shall not be put to shame when he speaks with his enemies in the gate."
    Psalm 127: 3-5 (ESV)

    A month since my last post - geez. I guess that's what having a kid will do to the blog. Besides being taken over by ridiculously cute pictures of the baby. :)
    Speaking of...
    Sweet little angel. :)


    So much has happened in the last month! I don't even think I can recall it all, and I definitely didn't take enough pictures. I know Liam took his first trip to REI and Ikea - woo hoo! Daddy was super excited about taking him to REI (he asked me when he was less than a week old if Liam could go yet). Liam has been to church every week since week 3 - and he's 7 weeks old now! He does great during the worship music, but gets fussy when the music stops. We had great grandparents and a great aunt come to visit.

    GiGi Liz and Grandpa Rich
    My dad came up for one last visit. My mom left Labor Day weekend after being here for 8 weeks. :( Daniel and I joked about how we would miss our "cleaning fairy" and after a week of her being gone we'd look around and realize there was no one to pick up after us anymore. Yeah, it happened. I've had to begin doing my own laundry, cleaning the house, taking the dog out, and figuring out what we are going to eat. Daniel has been such a wonderful husband and has been cooking a lot of the meals - more so because it's food that he bought and I have no idea how to cook. Lobster tails? Steak? Catfish? Really? Not exactly on my list of main foods that I cook on a regular basis.

    Learning to love his toys!
    Liam also took his first trip to Mississippi! On Friday of Labor Day weekend, we headed to Vicksburg to stay with our friends Brett and Laura Beth and our other friends Brad and Cari were staying the night too. It was fun to catch up since we hadn't been together since the spring. Laura Beth slept with Liam on the couch again, just like she did when she came to visit us in TX. :) Saturday we traveled to Louisianna for a wedding. Liam's first formal affair. :) He looked so cute in his little onesie with a tie that Laura Beth made for him! Liam got to meet a lot of our college friends and we enjoyed a night of celebrating Taylor and David's unity in Christ!

    David and Taylor are married!
    We drove back to Pelahatchie on Saturday night (in the ridiculous rain) and spent Sunday and Monday with family. Liam was held the entire day Saturday - I'm not sure he was put down once. Daniel didn't even hold him until 10:30 that night. The only reason I got to hold him was to feed him. :) We have a lot of family in Pelahatchie and everyone wanted their time with him, which we didn't have a problem with!

    Liam and Mamaw Sharon
    Liam has been going to Chapel at the Seminary on Tuesdays and Thursdays - we meet Daniel after class and stay for lunch normally. Daniel is off on Tuesday and Thursdays after he gets out of class at 9:45 so it's nice to be able to spend that time as a family.

    Jack doesn't like that Liam hogs all the attention now.
    Liam weighed 10lbs and 2 oz (that puts him in the 50th percentile for weight) and was 23 and 3/4 inches long (95th percentile for height) at his 4 week check up - we go again in a few weeks for his 2 month. He's growing so big!!! and so fast! We've had some issues with spitting up and gas pains and fussiness. (It's gotten a lot better lately and we are very thankful!) The doctor noticed Liam's rash on his face and chest (which I attributed to the newborn rash) and she said it was possibly from a milk allergy. So I've been trying to cut out dairy - super hard for this girl to do - and we switched to a soy formula for when we had to supplement. The rash is all gone now! And the fussiness has improved. Maybe if I completely cut out dairy it would go away all together, but dairy is like water for me. I need it and crave it! And it's incredible the amount of things that have dairy in them. I'd never actually thought about it before.

    Waking up from a quick nap in the chair.
    We're slowly getting a schedule started - but none of our days are ever the same. We wake up in the morning around 9 and start our day (I LOVE that he sleeps in!). He generally eats about every 2 hours. He goes down for a nap sometime between 12 and 1. Wakes up by 2. Eats, goes back to sleep for a few hours. Then it's the 2 hour eating schedule with occasional naps in the bouncy seat or my arms until 9pm when we start winding down. We attempt to get him to sleep by 9, but most of the time he fights and wakes up when we put him down, but by 11pm he's out for the count. He'll sleep for 4 hours at a time. (Before we went to Mississippi he slept for 6 hours straight for 2 nights in a row.)

    In his favorite Elle Bee Creation by Laura Beth!
    I can't believe how much of a blessing this little boy has been already. He grows and changes every day. I get all emotional when I hold him because I know one of these days he won't let me hold him like that anymore. I'm so thankful to have a job that lets me take 12 weeks off so I can spend extra time with him! And I'm thankful that it's a job that allows me to come back working 2 nights a week - Friday and Sundays - so that we don't have to pay for daycare or hire a sitter.

    I caught a smile! It's not a great picture, but it's still a smile!
    Liam - You have brought so much joy in your daddy and mommy's life already. The past 7 weeks have been crazy and tiresome, but they have been so much fun too. We love that you are looking at us now and focusing on our faces. We love how you snuggle up on our chests when you get sleepy. We love that glimmer of a smile that you show us on special occasions. The special moments that we spend in the rocking chair and singing to you during family worship are moments that we will always cherish. We love you little boy!
    Please notice Liam's face in this picture...