Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Sick babies...

Randomly last night Emerson starting puking and then she didn't stop all night long. It was awful. Poor baby was dry heaving and was just so weak and pale. Messes everywhere, and poor Eli was just concerned for his sister.

Last night, each time she threw up he would stand up in his crib and look at her concerned. Of course when I lifted her out of her crib he would shout, "DOWN, DOWN, DOWN." (He says "down" when he wants down, or when he wants up, or when he wants out.)

He was quiet again once she was laid back down. Eli threw up once last night but Marcus reports so far things have been okay at home today. I really hope this is short lived and not overly contagious like last time.

Monday, May 30, 2011

The rest of the story...

I couldn't be totally honest in my last post about my activities in California due to confidentiality reasons and proper procedure.

I did go to have a pysch evaluation but I also went to California to meet with a committee from the church where I have been appointed as pastor! I start July 1st which gives us a month to pack and move about 5 hours away.

It's going to be a challenge in many ways. The community is really really small. I've become a city girl these last 8 years, but luckily in the country in CA means you're never really that far from a bigger city.

I'm excited and nervous about what the future may hold. 

I didn't take many pictures while we were there, but I did quickly snap a picture of the sanctuary. The church building is old. It was built in the 1800s.

Emmy outside the church.

And Eli

On our way home we stopped in the city to visit my undergraduate university and let the babies stretch their legs. There was an event going on so the babies had their pictures taken with the mascot. (Emerson continues to be unsure of them so I'm in the picture too). 

I love this picture of my tiny boy on my campus. Maybe they'll follow in my footsteps and go to school here too. 

Friday, May 27, 2011

A Very long day...

Our day started at 4 am which is an hour in which no one should be awake. I'm just not a morning person. We had to drive to the bay area so I could meet with a shrink for my psychological evaluation. Ahhh... ministry and all of its requirements.

We actually made pretty good time and ended up arriving about an hour early, so we walked around the campus of the school where the doctor works. Eli and Emerson had a great time exploring and they even saw some dear (in the bay area of California).

Emmy was so cute because I kept asking, "Where are we?"

And she would put her arms up and say, "Are we?"

We're staying over and I'm currently typing in the dark praying that my exhausted 2 year olds will stop messing around and go to sleep. Sharing a hotel room with them at this age is not working out so well, because no matter what they can see us. They're both standing and saying, "mama, dada, mama, dada" and then laughing at each other.

We have the long drive home tomorrow and I still have to write my sermon for Sunday yay me!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Who knew...

that a new car would be so much fun for two year olds. Eli & Emerson are in love with our new car. It's hilarious. Eli always runs to the garage and wants to go "bye-bye" in the car.

Once in the car he shouts, "Go!" to Marcus whenever it's not moving.

Emerson on the other hand gives the car hugs and kisses before she lets us put her in the car seat she hugs the outside of the car. Then as we walk inside she hugs and kisses it.

It's a good thing they're excited about it because they're going to be spending a lot of time in it these next few weeks. Tomorrow we're going to California and next week we leave for a week long vacation to AZ and then southern CA for a wedding.

Let's hope their love is long lasting.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Cardiology appointments and all is well...

Eli & Emerson finally saw the cardiologist (they were referred back in early March). They were suppose to go last tuesday but I totally forgot about the appointment. I pretty much never forget things and I find it very unsettling when I do.

The short of it is both Eli & Emerson have murmurs, different kinds of murmurs, but they are both benign and should never cause a problem. Good enough for me all is well.

I do have to mention though that Eli is the best little patient. He had another appointment with the ENT on Monday and when the doctor came in he pointed to his ears and then turned his head so the doctor could have a look. (His left ear is still not quite right so we'll go back again and hope for some more improvement).

Today, at the cardiologist when the doctor was doing the heart ultrasound thing (it's late and I've forgotten the technical term) Eli just sat there not moving at all.

The doctor was amazed and mentioned that Eli was spoiling him by allowing him to have extra views of the heart, for an extra amount of time so the med student could have a look as well. The doctor mentioned that Eli might be a future cardiologist (which would make Marcus happy. Marcus has a special fascination with the heart and there's a piece of him that wishes he were the cardiologist).

The doctor was also very kind and very good at his job. I so appreciate those kind of doctors, although I'm happy to report we should never have to see him again.

The many storms...

This spring has been heavy with devastation caused my tornados and other natural disasters. I have a hard time even beginning to imagine what those in the areas affected are experiencing as they literally attempt to piece their lives back together, while mourning the loss of family, friends, homes, schools, work, churches.

I'm sure that those who read this blog are aware of many ways to help but I did want to give another option. The United Methodist Committee on Relief is one of the first responders around the world when disaster hits.

Even better 100% of any money donated goes to the designated area. If you feel called or led to donate to those affected by the storms, most recently in Joplin, MO you can go to this link here

If you click around on the site you can find more information about the work they're doing around the world and see how you can give to any of those sites.

Many prayers for those affected. It's truly heartbreaking.

Monday, May 23, 2011

A New (to us) car!

Our internet has been down for the last 36 hours so I've been doing laundry (seriously we have a big backlog of laundry and it feels like for 36 hours straight I've been doing laundry) but we had a pretty exciting and long day yesterday and bought a new vehicle.

Our last car was more than past its prime. I purchased it when I was a senior in high school back in 2002. Since then the car has seen me through 3 graduations, 3 states, 2 cross-country moves, 2 kids, and about a 100,000 miles. We've had a nice long run together the Focus and me, but it was to the point where I hoped I would get from one point to the next while in town, and the thought of taking it on any kind of a trip was pretty much impossible.

Marcus and I have been researching vehicles for the last several weeks and learned that they cost a lot more than the 8,000 I bought my Focus for almost a decade ago.

But then yesterday we found a 2009 Dodge Journey that we could actually afford. What we did not know was the sheer number of hours it takes to actually complete the car buying transaction. Just in case you were wondering, you should never take 2 year old twins with you for this... they did okay for the first 2 hours but by the last 2 hours they were more than over it (as was I).

We some how managed to get the salesman who is stuck in the dark ages. Not only could he not use a computer, but he entered all of Marcus' information (ignoring me). When he asked Marcus where he worked he was a bit dismayed to learn that Marcus stays at home, and therefore he needed to address me. (Plus when I wouldn't budge on something he turned from me and said, "so what do you think Marcus..." um hello sir I already told you the answer).

So we started over. Then when trying to do the financing piece of it we got a guy who started work yesterday and he didn't fully know what he was doing quite yet.

Finally, we drove away in our new to us car...

and they only called me 4 times today and had me come back down twice to re-sign the same paperwork... *sigh* I'm trying to ignore the incompetence and just be happy that we found a reliable vehicle that we can fit our entire family in (it was really questionable in the focus Marcus and I were both right next to the dashboard to make room for Eli & Emerson's enormous car seats).
Our new car, sitting next to our old car. 

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Home again...

I had an incredibly time in Denver. I was at an emerging young clergy conference with some of my fellow clergy people from around the Western jurisdiction. Sometimes it can feel very isolating (away from divinity) school to be in this line of work. I'm the youngest clergy in my annual conference and it's just nice to be around other people who are in the same place. Just starting out, many with young kids, etc.

It was also nice to hear what others are doing and to commit ourselves to staying connected and continuing to help recruit and encourage young clergy.

One of the best moments for me was when we randomly split into groups to head off to a restaurant to eat. I was in the car with a couple other people and the driver of the guy was asking me about life with twins. He then mentioned that he and his wife were in a place where they were taking measures which increased their chance of multiples.

I immediately knew that he was talking about infertility and so I "confessed" that mine were a result of ART and I knew the hell he and his wife were going through. Then the other passenger mentioned that she and her husband had been trying for a long while too and they too were in the midst of IF hell. It was such a powerful moment and it was amazing that we all ended up in the car together.

There's just something about the pain and experience of infertility that automatically bonds people together. I so hope and pray that they and everyone else still trying for their babies find success soon.

The other really awesome experience was the restaurant we ate at.  It's called SAME cafe, which stands for "So All May Eat" it's run by a husband and wife and there are no prices on their menus. Instead everyone is invited to eat, and then pay what they can. If a person is unable to contribute anything then they can get a healthy home cooked meal in exchange for helping wash dishes or carrying boxes etc.

Their goal is to be 100% sustainable and they're doing it. Such a powerful testimony of the good people are doing in the world, plus the food was fantastic. If you're ever in Denver or live in Denver and haven't checked this place out do it. Amazing, everything about it.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Super long day...

My day started at 4 this morning in order for me to catch my flight to Denver. Marcus had to drive me which of course meant we had to wake up Eli & Emerson. Which provides me with the perfect opportunity write about how their personalities manifest in waking up.

When Eli wakes up 9 times out of 10 he's alert, smiling, laughing, sometimes skipping around his crib and ready to go. He's just a happy guy in the morning.

Emerson on the other hand, buries herself under her covers and her multitudes of piggies and often emerges from this pile like the swamp thing. Slow, disgruntled, not ready or willing to sit or even walk. She needs to be snuggled in the morning.

So this morning at 4 was no different. Marcus woke up Eli and he had the biggest grin on his face. From dead asleep to smiling in 2 seconds. For Eli this was a great adventure to be woken up while it was still dark.

My dear sweet Emerson on the other hand did not come around so easily. She was lying on her stomach and when I lifted her up she literally folded in half. I tried to sit her up so I could turn her around and she toppled into a heap. Then once I picked her up she was immediately folded up head on my shoulder. She was not so pleased with this early wake up call.

My flight went well and so far day one of the conference has been good. It's so so nice to be around other young clergy. I've so missed my classmates from Yale and the energy they brought with them and this is just a small reminder and small taste of that again.

I've got another long day ahead of me tomorrow so off to sleep.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Leaving on a jet plane...

I'm leaving tomorrow morning, 6:05 am to be exact (I don't know what I was thinking when I booked that flight). I'm off to Denver for three days to attend a young clergy person conference.

I was nominated by the bishop to represent my annual conference (for all you none methodists an annual conference is a geographic region that shares a bishop).

I'm excited to meet other young people engaged in the work I'm doing. Plus I'm extra excited that we'll be focusing on social justice issues. It sounds perfect for me.

Now I have to go pack and go to bed.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Eli labels everything...

One of my favorite things about Eli is that he feels the need to point to everything in our house and either label it as "mama" or "dada"

For example books = mama's (I told Marcus he needs to read more so Eli doesn't associate books as something belonging only to female's).

xbox controller = dada's

Dr. Pepper = mama's

Any shoes that are black and running shoes = dada's

His shoe identification is actually something I find really fascinating. He's obsessed with shoes, he loves them and he always has. He loves to get into our closet and pull out all of the shoes which include about 15 pairs that I never wear. So he can't necessarily associate them with me from wearing them. Instead he has some sort of system in his head and he shows me each shoe and decides if it belongs to mama or dada. He's surprisingly good at it, the only shoe that threw him for a loop was an old pair of running shoes that belong to me. They're gray and black so in Eli's mind these were dada's.

(When Eli pulls out all these shoes Marcus gets a visual reminder of all the shoes I own and never wear).

Hats = dada's

He's so cute. The other thing he does is introduce Marcus and to each other all the time. When we're in the car he'll say, "mama...(pause a bit) and then say "dada"  The way his voice inflects it sounds exactly like he's say, "Mama I would like you to meet dada"

Silly cute boy.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Long Week...

This feels like a week that will never end and I don't even know why. Work hasn't been overly hectic (aside from a lock-in last night, so today has been the awful post lock-in recovery). I feel like I have so much to do and never any time or energy to get it done.

On Wednesday I leave for a conference in Denver for 3 days, next week I have another work obligation taking me to California, after that we go on vacation for 2 weddings, then annual conference. I just feel exhausted looking at the next month or so of our lives.

That's all.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Their 2nd Birthday Finally...

I finally have a second to post some pictures and a recap of their second birthday. Their birthday was on Mother's day this year which I really liked. I liked having the focus on them instead of me after all they are the reason I even get to be recognized on mother's day.

I had to work that morning and then right after we packed up our car and drove to our hometown (160) miles away for their party. We decided to do it that way since pretty much all of the family lives there.

The day was beyond hectic and tiring but we managed to pull off a little family birthday party.
We had a balloon theme, since balloons are pretty much their most favorite thing in the world.

My attempt at a cake. *sigh* I should have known better than to try and do it myself. It's suppose to be a bunch of balloons... eh I tried.

Eli & Emmy in their birthday shirts

Opening presents

Emmy was more into opening presents than Eli 

More presents

A new chair from Grammy

Both of them in their new rocking chairs

The cake

I was impressed because they both actually managed to blow out their candles. 

It took Emmy a little bit of extra time to get them out

Trying to get a picture of Eli & Emmy with their cousins. But it didn't work very well.

Going for a ride in their new wagon

This picture cracks me up. We went back over to my in-laws after the party and it was pretty late at this point. My in-laws are laying tile in their kitchen and dining room so the floor is a construction zone. Emmy was tired from all the excitement and laid down on the floor with her piggy. 

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Happy Birthday Eli & Emmy!!

About a month old in this picture!

Her too

My babies turn two today! Such amazing little miracles. 

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Just some things...

I'm too scattered and tired right now for a coherent post so I'm going to do bullet points.

  • The reason I'm so tired is I've started exercising. Mostly doing the 30 day shred and yesterday I went running. Let me tell you that running uphill with two toddlers in a stroller is a joke. At the top of the hill I was light headed, dizzy, couldn't breathe, plus the sun was blinding me. I was pretty sure I was seeing the light and that was the end of it. Marcus walked up the hill and then said, "see I told you not to run up it." haha...

  • Speaking of working out Marcus has been going to the gym and has already lost 8 lbs.

  • I think I must take a lot of pictures of my children, because the other day Emerson had 3 of her stuffed animals and she was moving them to different locations in the room. Then holding Marcus ipod touch up and saying "cheese" it was hysterical and adorable. I imagine that is what I must look like moving them around, begging them to hold still and then saying "cheese" while trying to get a picture. They are so observant.

  • Speaking of observant. Sometimes we empty out their piggy banks and let them put the coins back in. Good fine motor skill work plus it keeps them busy. Marcus flipped a coin today in front of them, which in toddler world translated to taking handfuls of pennies and throwing them up in the air. So much for that calm activity. 

  • I became a certified candidate for ordination on Tuesday. Which means I've passed onto the next step. I was also approved to get my own church appointment should one open up. We'll see what happens but it was all very good news.

  • The babies birthday is on sunday. We are not prepared and I've decided I'm just not a party planner. I see all these cute things that people do for parties and it looks so great. I wish I could just hire someone to do it for me.

  • I think that's about it. Good night.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

What I read in April...

Once again it felt like a slow reading month to me. (but it actually really wasn't now that I look at the list) I was so busy with Lent, Holy Week, Retreats, Easter, teaching classes, that I felt like I had no time for anything but work. Yet, I did manage to work some books in.

1.) Two Kisses for Maddy: A Memoir of Loss & Love by Matt Logelin
2.) The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss (I LOVED this book which was a huge surprise to me since I don't consider fantasy to be a genre I enjoy).
3.) Love by Toni Morrison
4.) Matched by Ally Condie
5.) I know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou
6.) Gather Together in My Name by Maya Angelou
7.) Singin' and Swingin' and Gettin' Merry Like Christmas by Maya Angelou
8.) The Heart of a Woman by Maya Angelou
9.) All God's Children NEed Traveling Shoes By Maya Angelou
10.) A Song Flung Up to Heaven by Maya Angelou
11.) The Lake of Dreams by Kim Edwards

Did you sense a theme with #5-10? I get into these moods where I feel like I need to read everything by a certain person. I intended just to read Gather Together in my Name by Maya Angelou which is the second book in her autobiographies, but first decided to re-read I know Why the Caged Bird Sings, and then I just couldn't stop. So I read all 6 of her autobiographies and I loved them. She's a fascinating woman. So much about her I never knew. I especially loved when her life crossed paths with Malcolm X in Africa. Malcolm X talks about all of that in his autobiography and I loved hearing about the same event from another perspective.

I had to resist purchasing and tracking down all her books of poetry too. A similar thing happened after I read "Notebooks" by Tennessee Williams suddenly I felt the urge to read everything by him. Marcus just rolls his eyes at me when I get into these moods.

Total books this month = 11
Total Pages read this month = 3431
Total Money saved by borrowing or reading what I own = $57.77
Books I bought this month = 3
Books read I already owned = 1

Total Books in 2011 = 45
Total Pages in 2011 = 13,248