Friday, November 18, 2016

Adventures of Caleb: 5 months old

Dear Sweet Caleb,



So much has changed this past month! You are really becoming a big boy so very quickly (an mommy is not quite ready for that yet!) The biggest change this month has been in your mobility. You are a rolling pro now. You can go from front to back and back to front from either side. You can inch worm army crawl, it's pretty cute. It takes quite a bit of effort and lots of grunts but you can pretty much get from where you are to wherever you would like to be. Mommy needs to make sure there are not things you can get in to on the floor now! You are wearing 6 month clothes but I have a feeling very soon we will be moving up to 9 months. At your doctor check-up your measurements were the 95% for height and your head measurement was off the chart large...so you are already setting the curve for all the other 5 month old babies! haha! 


We have been spending quite a bit of time out at the farm. You enjoy the fresh air and all the things there are to see. Here is a picture of you, Daddy and Rebekah enjoying a camp fire. 


We spent part of your 5th month up in Minnesota visiting Gramma and Papa Ron. You discovered that you enjoy books...specifically trying to put books into your mouth! 


You are a good little road tripper as long as it's light outside. You are not a fan of being in the car when it is dark and you can not see. Sometimes Mommy has to turn on the back seat light for you to keep you happy. 



Look at you handsome guys! Your smile is just so cute! 


Oh, and we watched the Cubs win the World Series! You were a good little cheerer! 


You are pretty happy most of the time if you are on the floor and free to go where you would like to go. Your hair is still a little crazy, but it makes me smile! 


You love your sister and she is the best person to make you laugh. It is so fun to see the two of you interact with each other. She tries to be gentle with you and you are very patient with her and all of her hugs and kisses. You love to try to get her and when you finally get close to her, she moves and you have to start all over again. But you don't mind. Some day (soon!) you will be able to keep up with her. 


Thursday, November 17, 2016

Adventures in Life: Planning for Christmas

I'm still working on Caleb's 5 month post (and hopefully will have some cute little chubby cheeks for you soon!) but in the meantime I've been making some Christmas plans and wanted to just share a few things with you.

Gift giving can be stressful for many people - making sure you have the just right gift for the people on your list. I have been using The Gifter's Holiday Tool Kit that Lauren from The Thinking Closet wrote.

Lauren breaks down gift giving into a 5 day, organized list. So if you like lists as much as I do, this will help you! Plus her videos are adorable. You will love her!

I also have some people on my list that are hard to shop for (you know you have at lease one person on your gift list that you have no clue what to get for them) and I saw an idea that is so good, I just had to share it with you...

If you have someone hard to shop for try looking for something they might enjoy at the Feed My Starving Children Marketplace.  They have gifts ranging from coffee to jewelry, decorations to puzzles. Each gift purchased not only supports artisans in third world countries but it also helps FMSC provide meals for malnourished children in 70 countries around the world. (For example a bag of coffee provides 33 meals! Anyone know a coffee lover?!) Great idea, right?!

I am trying to mail out our Christmas cards early this year because I did a combo baby Caleb birth announcement/we moved/Merry Christmas and Happy New Year card all in one. They turned out super cute and if you would like me to mail you one, just send me your address and I will add you to my list - I love getting real mail and sending real mail!! (You can send your address via e-mail at veronicalynnhill (at) gmail.com)

Well, that's about it for today...ok, I can't resist! Here is a squishy cheek picture!

And his big sister (not as squishy, but oh so cute!) 




Saturday, October 29, 2016

Adventures in Life: Potty Talk

I have discovered that when you have a toddler there is lots of potty talk that happens. You know, the 4 letter words every potty training mommy uses.

poop.

toot.

wipe.

pee-pee...

Ok, that last one doesn't work, but you get the picture. These words are constant vocabulary around the house these days....and let's just be honest, as the wife of a plumber these words are pretty common year round for us.

We have been unofficially potty training Rebekah for quite some time. When she was about 10 months old, whenever I would take her diaper off to change her she would let out her pee. On me. On the changing table. Pretty much everywhere. So, I decided to try setting her on a little potty seat, just to try and see what would happen. This started a very long streak of her letting out both #1 and #2 on her little potty chair. For over a year she was still wearing a diaper but when I would change her, she would sit on the potty chair and usually let something out.

Then we had Caleb and moved. We suspended our use of cloth diapers and I became inconsistent with our pee-pee routine. She turned two and stopped wanting to sit on her little potty seat. The battle was just a little much for me to handle. But recently she has been showing interest in using the potty again, and she has been wanting some big girl panties.



We have been experimenting with Pampers EasyUps as a combo "big girl panties" and diaper in one. She loves that "just Bekah" can put them on and pull them up. They are nice and stretch so when it comes time to race to the bathroom because her 'pee-pee is coming out' it is quick and easy to remove. It was a little hard to tell which side was the front and which was the back, but I think we got it figured out. 


Before we moved in with Daniel's parents while we build our house, we used cloth diapers. If we were in our own house, I would probably use cloth training pants. But since we are using someone else's washer and dryer, we are going with disposable diapers, and I think these Pampers are going to work well for us when we decide to full on potty train. 

If you are interested in trying Pampers EasyUps, you can click here for a $1.50 off coupon! I received 4 free diapers to try out from Influenster. These opinions are all my own. 

Friday, October 28, 2016

Adventures in Life: Quiet Time Coloring

I always loved coloring. A clean, new, blank coloring book was always an exciting treat. Even as an adult I savor each new page in a coloring book. And I love that adult coloring books are a thing now. They are my favorite! 

One of my newest coloring books is also a devotional book. It's called 40 Days to a Joyful Motherhood. A devotional book for mothers. A coloring devotional book for moms. What a great idea, right?!



I have been enjoying this devotional book for the past few weeks, and while I have not completed all 40 of the days, I have very much enjoyed the the idea of this book. Each day starts with a verse or two from the Bible. It is followed by a few paragraph to full page of a devotion on the topic of motherhood as it relates to 6 different topics: self acceptance, self care, reconciling with grief, generosity, presence, and forgiveness. The devotion is ended by a prayer and on the opposite page is a drawing to color. 

What I liked about this book: I enjoyed that it could be a quick 10 minute quiet time or I could go deeper by looking up the included Bible passage and spend more like 30 minutes studying, meditating and coloring. I found that the pictures were simple enough to color and think about what I had just read. I also liked that there was extra space on the pages to write down thoughts, almost like a journal. I tend to write and doodle when I am thinking and this book provided me enough space to do just that.

There were a few ways I thought this book could be better. The actual book itself is kind of flimsy. The pages are thin and you could only really use color pencil on them - marker would go right through onto the next page. While the content of the devotional was good, I wished it would have delved deeper into what God's word says about motherhood. To me, the devotional aspect of the book was more 'milk' instead of 'meat' when it came to the study of the Bible. 

I would recommend this book to moms who are looking for a quick and easy way to get some relaxing devotional time into their schedule. It would be great for someone who doesn't normally have a quiet time, and would make a good gift to any mom who likes to color. 

I did receive this book free in exchange for my honest review. 

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Adventures of Caleb: 4 Months

I am a little behind with this 4 months post, but here we go!


Dear Caleb, 

What a growing boy you are! You are 4 months old and every day is a new adventure in rolling, grabbing, and baby babbling for you. In the last month you have really started to enjoy being on your tummy and playing with toys. It is so fun to watch you reach for and grab toys. You love to look at them and then try to stuff them into your mouth. You are pretty persistent when it comes to trying to get things into your mouth. Your favorite toy is a stuffed ladybug that was also your sister's favorite...and sometimes she still likes to play with it too.

You are growing so fast that you are already wearing 6 month clothes and 6-12 month socks are to little for your cute chubby feet already. 

You do not have any teeth yet, but you are drooling enough to make me wonder if they will be coming soon. You are almost always sporting a bib because of your drool. I have had to buy a bunch of them for you. Your sister had tons of bibs but never needed them. 

You love your sister and she loves you! If you are crying in the car, usually her singing a song will quiet your cries. Your current favorite is Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star. And she loves being the big sister to sing it to you. You just light up when you see her and love to watch her play. 

You still do not have much of a sleeping schedule. You will be awake for about 2 hours at a time during the day and then want to go to sleep. Sometimes you sleep for 30 minutes and sometimes you sleep for 3 hours. You normally take 2 short naps and one long nap and then sleep from 9pm to 9am with 2 or 3 feedings along the way. You LOVE to eat and you love to watch other people eat. I just know in a few months you well really enjoy eating big boy food at the table with your sister!

You are such a happy, sweet boy! Mommy loves you! 

Saturday, October 1, 2016

Adventures in Building: This Is It!

It's for real! 


It's finally ours! 


We are now the owners of this 12 acre beautiful slice of land. We closed on Friday. At the closing we got to meet the seller and chat with her a little bit. She was very sweet and we are thankful she chose to sell it to us. Can I tell you a secrete? After hearing a little about the sellers story, I can't help but believe that God has been getting this piece of land ready for our family for years. 

Long before He planted the desire to build our own house and have our own little farm. 

Long before Daniel and I met, fell in love, and got married. 

Actually, around the time we were both born, the previous owners purchase this land. It had been farm land and didn't have anything on it. I don't know their whole story, but they decided to plant trees on the property. A thick line of pine trees around the border on 3 sides. And a beautiful variety of deciduous trees throughout the middle. For the next 30 years they watered the trees and maintained the grass. I'm not sure why they never built on the land, and we probably will never know. I didn't feel like it was a question I should ask her at the time. But from the first time we looked at the land, we knew it was what we had been searching and praying for. We had looked at several other properties and they were not nearly as beautiful as this land. And after the closing we stopped by our new land. And looking out on the land I just keep thinking that before either of us was even born, God planted these trees for us! Before we were born He knew we would be standing here, looking out on this great new adventure we were undertaking. Wow! What a great God we have! 

Hopefully we will have some building posts to share with you soon!! 

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Adventures of Rebekah: On The Farm

For a long time now Rebekah has been interested in all things farm. Farm animals, books about farms, looking for big red barns, tractors, corn...the girl loves corn on the cob! (Cut it off and she wants nothing to do with it...oh, the life of a two year old!) We are excited to start our own adventure on our own little farm someday soon, but for now we read about farms and play with her plastic farm animals. 

One of our new favorite books is about a farm. And I love it because it is a "good-night" book. That's what I call books that are perfect for just before bedtime. It's called Night Night, Farm by Amy Parker. This 20 page board book is recommended for ages 4-8, but Rebekah is 2 and loves it. It is published by Tommy Nelson, and like all of our TN books it is super sturdy and holds up well to the not-so-gentle page turns of a pre-reader.


This sweet story visits all the animals on the farm as they are getting ready for bed. Each page is a different animal with a good night rhyme (we love rhyming books) and each of the animals says night-night in their own "language". Reinforcing the sounds that each animal makes. I'm always looking for books that are fun and educational at the same time.

Perhaps Rebekah's favorite thing is that on each page there are 2 mice that are making their good night rounds on the farm. She loves looking and finding the mice on each page and seeing what they are doing. At the end all the animals are asleep in the barn and we like to practice saying good night to each of them in their own animal language. 

This is a wonderful farm story and would be a great addition to any child's library! 

If you would like to win a free copy of Night Night, Farm for you own collection, or to give away as a gift, just comment here or on my Instagram picture of the book (here) before Friday. 

I received a copy of this book for free from Tommy Nelson Publishers, and like always the opinions here are all my own.