Harper’s Nursery Tour

I decided to break up our “home tour” into individual rooms. We typically only have one clean room at a time in our home if we are lucky, so this should be fun. I’m just being honest here. 😉

First up, Harper’s room. I will share the sources if they are still available. If not, I will link to similar items. When I was pregnant with Harper, I wanted to do a simple nursery for her. I love the “good ole days” and wanted a room to reflect that. Calming, simple, and sweet were my goals. Harper’s bedroom is the smallest of all, so things are sort-of crammed in there. But, it works really well. There is enough room for her to play and have fun.

My younger sister, Amanda, came up to visit us in the Spring when I was pregnant. I was still undecided on anything specific for the nursery. She was helping me figure out my sewing machine and taught me how to sew a crib sheet so that I could make what I liked. We went to several fabric stores and searched for the perfect fabrics for Harper’s bedroom. We finally found this Nursery Rhyme fabric. It was perfect. This is the fabric I used for the crib sheet. (Nevermind that most nursery rhymes have horrifying backgrounds.. the nostalgia is what I loved.)

Amanda made a crib skirt for the bedroom. My mom went and found the same fabric at their Hobby Lobby and made a beautiful quilt to go along with it all. The room is mostly soft pink, white, and grey. There are some bright pinks thrown in for fun.

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To this day, I still love to go into Harper’s room. It is my favorite room in the house. It is not an expensive or over-the-top nursery. It is simple and perfect and there is just a sense of calm when you walk in the door.

Crib- old Carter’s similar here
Chair- Babies R Us
Dresser- Ikea
Table & Chairs- Melissa and Doug
Lamp- old Target this one is adorable
Crib Bumpers- Go Mama Go
Hamper- old Target similar here
Sound Machine- HoMedics
Humidifier- Crane
Cube shelf- old Target similar here
Rocking horse- made for us similar here
Activity Cube- B. Toys
Dollhouse- Little People
Diaper Bag- won from Lily Jade
Walker Wagon- Radio Flyer

If you have any questions about anything specific, please leave them in the comments below.

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Unwind

I am currently lounging on my bed while my husband has our girls helping clean up. It is been a day, to say the least. I obviously am writing ahead.

We took it easy this morning and got a slow start. Chloe and I did school while Harper wandered around the house playing and entertaining herself. Addison did her usual “I want to do school work. Just kidding, I’m done.” over and over again.

Lunch was a flop. Naptime was a train wreck. The girls fought and yelled so much that they woke Harper up. Remember, Harper can barely hear.. Dinner time was another flop. I told Scott “I need some time away from them.”

Sometimes, it is important to recognize that we need a break. There’s nothing wrong with needing a break. I figured that I would take some time for my mind to unwind. What do you do to unwind?

I like reading my Bible; especially when the day has been a huge disaster. I need to re-focus on what I am doing; why I LOVE being a mother. Because, I really do, even on the hard days.

Lately though, I feel like my Bible study time has fallen flat. Almost as though it has become just one more thing to check off my list. That is not good. I started searching for a new Bible study that would help me along. I saw on Mandy’s blog that she was reading Pressing Pause. I went ahead and pre-ordered it.

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It just arrived, and I always have to laugh at God’s timing. He knows just what we need, and when we are going to need it!

The book is beautiful, and I really cannot wait to dig deeper into it. I love journaling devotionals. If I just read, I don’t have the tendency to just close the book when I am done and move on to the next thought. I love having the space to write my thoughts about what I just read. I try to keep a notebook with my Bible so that I can write down some thoughts about what I have read for the day.

Since moving, I have completely slacked on that. Everything got packed and I just got lazy. More excuses.

I encourage you to join me. Whether you purchase Pressing Pause for yourself, or just start journaling during your regular Bible study time, make sure that you don’t just let your Bible be another thing to check off the list. Read and experience what God has for you! Spending time with Jesus is the best way to unwind.

Harper- 20 months

Time is flying by all too quickly, and it breaks my heart to know that soon I won’t be the mom of a baby anymore. Seriously, can we just hit pause for a while?

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Age: 20 months (and 11 days..if you are counting)

Clothes: Still in 18-24 month, and some 12 month, with a little bit of rolling occasionally needed to help with the length. She’s so petite and I love it!

Favorite Foods: Daiya mac and cheese, green beans, corn, bananas, Plum teensy fruits.. my EOS lip balm (she doesn’t care what flavor)..

Favorite Words: She is still our little nonverbal child. 🙂 She is starting to say what sounds like “more”. Maa.
Favorite Activities: She recently discovered  how fun the slide is. She would probably go up and down a slide all day long. She loves to play outside and run up and down the sidewalks. She walked with us all the way to pick up a pizza on Friday. She is also very content to be pulled in the wagon while we go for a long walk.

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Favorite Things: She is absolutely in love with her baby doll. She carries her baby around and feeds it, changes her diaper, and always wants me to wrap her up in a blanket. I love watching her care for her little baby. She shares her food with her. She also really loves her ABC puzzle. She loves to dump the pieces on the floor, mostly, but it’s a start.
Signature Moves: Harper backs her booty up until she bumps into someone or something to sit on. If you lay on the floor, you’ll see her little diaper butt as it sits on your head. Then, she bounces and laughs hysterically. She dances to any music that she hears, and will do the motions to “5 little monkeys swinging from a tree”.

Other Milestones: Since we learned that the reason for her speech delay is a hearing problem, we have started learning sign language. She won’t immediately pick up every word she hears, so it’s important for us to be able to know what she needs. She is having fun learning, and it is so nice to be able to help her out. She participated in her first easter egg hunt and started to grasp what was happening.

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I am so incredibly blessed to be this little girl’s mama. She is such a happy girl, and so full of love and laughter. This age is so much fun, and she is like a little sponge absorbing everything around her.
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Hoppy Easter

 

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I hope that you all had an amazing Easter!! We sure did!!!

  1. It was our first Easter at CCC. WOW!! It was my first Sunday working with the C3 kids small groups. I had the priviledge of working with 1st and 2nd graders (and will continue to- so excited!). They were so sweet wearing their Easter dresses and suits. For our second service, I was in with my family. My mind was blown. Our praise team put SO much work into worship, and it was incredible. Seriously, my mind was blown. It was incredible. I’ve never CELEBRATED so much on a Sunday. But, really, Easter is a celebration! If it had ended with Christ dying, it would have been meaningless. Christ RISING and defeated sin, Hell, death, and the grave is worth CELEBRATION!! That is where salvation comes from, and I am so thankful.
  2. I burnt our lunch (which was just a roast in the crock pot) so we got to try a new pizza place. YUM! (and oops!)
  3. I got to work preparing our Easter dinner, which consisted of ham, Italian bread nests, mashed potatoes, gravy, and carrots.
  4. Scott and I stuffed eggs while the girls played with my parents. Then, my mom and I went out and hid them outside while Scott and Dad held the fort down inside.
  5. I cannot get enough of the girls hunting for Easter eggs. Harper was perfectly happy to just walk around carrying her basket. Chloe and Addi get really into it and always look so darn cute. They have a blast. Chloe kept asking for her eggs to be hidden over and over again. Bless my mom for her willingness to always do fun things.
  6. Dinner. Oh, my. It was SO good. It was my first time making the bread nests, and they did not disappoint. They were HUGE and so delicious. We were all stuffed, and I think we went into a food coma because I don’t even remember what happened the rest of the day.

Holidays are awesome with kids. It was made even more awesome by having my parents in town. I love spending time with my mom and dad and never take it for granted.

Easter

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 Now after the Sabbath, toward the dawn of the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to see the tomb. And behold, there was a great earthquake, for an angel of the Lord descended from heaven and came and rolled back the stone and sat on it. His appearance was like lightning, and his clothing white as snow. And for fear of him the guards trembled and became like dead men.  But the angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified.  He is not here, for he has risen, as he said. Come, see the place where he lay.  Then go quickly and tell his disciples that he has risen from the dead, and behold, he is going before you to Galilee; there you will see him. See, I have told you.” So they departed quickly from the tomb with fear and great joy, and ran to tell his disciples.  And behold, Jesus met them and said, “Greetings!” And they came up and took hold of his feet and worshiped him. Then Jesus said to them, “Do not be afraid; go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee, and there they will see me.”

While they were going, behold, some of the guard went into the city and told the chief priests all that had taken place. And when they had assembled with the elders and taken counsel, they gave a sufficient sum of money to the soldiers and said, “Tell people, ‘His disciples came by night and stole him away while we were asleep.’ And if this comes to the governor’s ears, we will satisfy him and keep you out of trouble.”  So they took the money and did as they were directed. And this story has been spread among the Jews to this day.

Now the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed them.  And when they saw him they worshiped him, but some doubted. And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.  Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,  teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”
Matthew 28

I am so glad the story didn’t end on that dark Friday. Our savior AROSE. He is ALIVE! 

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Good Friday

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“So when Pilate saw that he was gaining nothing, but rather that a riot was beginning, he took water and washed his hands before the crowd, saying, “I am innocent of this man’s blood; see to it yourselves.”And all the people answered, “His blood be on us and on our children!”Then he released for them Barabbas, and having scourged Jesus, delivered him to be crucified.

Then the soldiers of the governor took Jesus into the governor’s headquarters, and they gathered the whole battalion before him. And they stripped him and put a scarlet robe on him, and twisting together a crown of thorns, they put it on his head and put a reed in his right hand. And kneeling before him, they mocked him, saying, “Hail,King of the Jews!”  And they spit on him and took the reed and struck him on the head.  And when they had mocked him, they stripped him of the robe and put his own clothes on him and led him away to crucify him.

As they went out, they found a man of Cyrene, Simon by name. They compelled this man to carry his cross. And when they came to a place called Golgotha (which means Place of a Skull), they offered him wine to drink, mixed with gall, but when he tasted it, he would not drink it. And when they had crucified him, they divided his garments among them by casting lots. Then they sat down and kept watch over him there.  And over his head they put the charge against him, which read, “This is Jesus, the King of the Jews.”  Then two robbers were crucified with him, one on the right and one on the left.  And those who passed by derided him, wagging their heads  and saying, “You who would destroy the temple and rebuild it in three days, save yourself! If you arethe Son of God, come down from the cross.”  So also the chief priests, with the scribes and elders, mocked him, saying,  “He saved others; he cannot save himself. He is the King of Israel; let him come down now from the cross, and we will believe in him.  He trusts in God; let God deliver him now, if he desires him. For he said, ‘I am the Son of God.’” And the robbers who were crucified with him also reviled him in the same way.

Now from the sixth hour there was darkness over all the land until the ninth hour. And about the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, “Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?” that is, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” And some of the bystanders, hearing it, said, “This man is calling Elijah.”  And one of them at once ran and took a sponge, filled it with sour wine, and put it on a reed and gave it to him to drink.  But the others said, “Wait, let us see whether Elijah will come to save him.”  And Jesus cried out again with a loud voice and yielded up his spirit.

 And behold, the curtain of the temple was torn in two, from top to bottom. And the earth shook, and the rocks were split.  The tombs also were opened. And many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised, and coming out of the tombs after his resurrection they went into the holy city and appeared to many.  When the centurion and those who were with him, keeping watch over Jesus, saw the earthquake and what took place, they were filled with awe and said, “Truly this was the Son of God!”

 There were also many women there, looking on from a distance, who had followed Jesus from Galilee, ministering to him, among whom were Mary Magdalene and Mary the mother of James and Joseph and the mother of the sons of Zebedee.”
Matthew 27:24-56

Let us never forget the sacrifice that Jesus made for us.

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Things I am Loving

My mind is scrambled from trying to organize and clean before my family arrives tomorrow. I thought I’d round up some of my favorite things right now. I guess a slightly materialistic take on “Thankful Thursday”.

 

First up- my new Lily Jade bag. I have been drooling over these diaper bags for a couple of years now. Can you believe that is a diaper bag?!?!?! I WON a diaper bag of my choice last week, so I picked the new Shaylee in black.. It showed up on Tuesday. It is leather and smells so good and feels so buttery soft. The bag can be carried like a backpack, which is just fantastic with three little ones. Plus, the organizing insert just makes my organization-obsessed heart happy!!

I also LOVE this company. It is a business started by a husband and wife team. They are always hosting giveaways, giving mom’s who cannot afford these beauties a chance to win one. They honor adoptive mothers, and give away a free bag to an adoptive family once a month. They PRAY for us as mothers. They encourage us. THAT is a huge part of why I have wanted to support them so much. (They have no idea that I am writing this. I just LOVE it.)

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This binder has been my lifeline since moving here. It has places to organize all of our bills, an address book, menu planning pages, project pages.. basically anything and everything. When we lived in Michigan, we did not have to pay for utilities. We lived in a parsonage. We have a lot more bills to keep track of, and it’s nice to have a place to organize EVERYTHING for our home. I know that I could have created all of these pages, bought dividers, etc. for less money. Our printer has been broken, and I knew that everything that came in this would be quality and last so that I can print new menu and bill pages next year and just throw them in the sections.  Pinterest has TONS of printables for the home.

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I am also really thankful for these crazies. These girls are so silly and sweet. They make me bonkers some days.. many days, really. But, those bonkers moments are outweighed by the many good moments that I get. I get an endless supply of hugs and kisses. Mom life is awesome!!

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Last, but certainly not least, I am so thankful for this man right here. He is such an excellent daddy (note the necklace..) to our three girls. He has hugged me through a lot of struggle. He prays for me. He loves me unconditionally and puts up with my crazy moods. He makes me coffee in the morning because I hate waking up. He thanks me for taking care of the girls and homeschooling. If you are also a SAHM, you know how much it means to be thanked for it. I just love him so much.

The Bright Side of “Special Needs”

As the news sinks in, I have realized that I am officially a “special needs” mom. I believe that technically, I have been a special needs mom since Harper was born with FPIES, if you are super into labels.

I realize that there are so many parents to children with special needs. MANY of them facing far more difficult things than I will ever face. I do not wish to offend anyone, or to make it feel like a slap in the face. If I phrase something in the wrong way, please KINDLY point it out to me. This is all new to me, and I am trying my best to learn to navigate these waters.

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I have noticed a bright side to all of this madness. (My home is full of “madness”, if you couldn’t tell!)

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Addison and Chloe have had it drilled into their minds that Harper has food allergies since she started eating real food. Their sister cannot be given anything with dairy. They keep their milk cups far away from her. They are always asking “does ____________ have dairy in it?”  “Can Harper have this?” They have learned to look out for her. It has been really beautiful to see this progression in them as Harper grows and explores more.

Now, I have tried explaining to them that we know that Harper does not hear very well. They have known that Harper cannot say words, but that was just “baby sister” stuff. It was normal to them. We have asked them to not try to speak for Harper so that she will learn to say what she needs on her own. We didn’t know that there was any issue other than not speaking.

Scott and I have been working on learning American Sign Language and teaching it to Harper. She can hear and mostly understand what we are saying to her. We have to point and gesture a lot (which I never thought about before..) to get her to follow directions sometimes, but she understands most of the time. When she is trying to tell us something, we are lost. She is trying to repeat the words that she hears, but it just sounds like growling or grunting. We have felt frustrated because she will get upset when we don’t do what she is wanting or needing. I don’t know if she done eating or wants more food, for example.

It is so nice to sign while asking “Do you want more to eat, or do you want down?” and have her respond with a sign. She otherwise would just growl and I would be lost. Both girls have been observing this and so eager to learn along with us. I haven’t forced it upon them, but have encouraged them that they can help Harper out by learning to sign.

Chloe especially has been signing while she talks to us. She doesn’t know a whole lot of signs, but she is always asking what the sign is for words.

Harper’s hearing loss is most likely not permanent. She will most likely have something done that will cause her to hear like “normal” again. But, she will not just catch up verbally over night. She has a long road ahead of her no matter which way things go.

I want to continue learning sign language even if it is no longer necessary for our family. I think the world needs more allies for people with these special needs. How wonderful would it be to have child with hearing loss be able to communicate and make a friend in my children because they learned ASL?! I know that IF Harper’s hearing loss were to end up being permanent, it would mean the world to me to see her make friends who speak her language.

Had my family not been thrown these challenges, even though they are insignificant compared to many others, my girls may not have learned the compassion they have. You can teach diversity and that everyone has different strengths and weaknesses all you want. But when they are faced with it head on, it takes on a whole new meaning. They are daily living it and putting into practice what they have been taught.

It is truly beautiful to see these girls blossoming and learning all about what makes each other special.

 

Brussels

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More senseless acts of violence. More terrorism. More fear. More lives lost and families left to grieve.

Let us stop and pray for Brussels. Let us pray for the people of the world. Pray for the countries who endure this terrorism daily.

Spring Cleaning

It is time to get serious about whipping this place into shape. It’s spring, and though it has felt like spring for.. oh.. since we moved here, there’s something about Spring that just says “clean”.  It’s cliche, but I love having the windows open with the breeze blowing through while cleaning.

Everything is turning green. It appears that we have rose bushes in front of our apartment and I can’t wait to see what color of roses bloom. I am dying to have a place put several potted vegetable plants. It will be easy once the pots and soil are purchased, but did you know that moving has an absurd amount of expenses?!

Anyway.. 

My parents are coming this weekend. We had company a few weeks ago, but only for one day, so it was easy to hide the mess in closets and pray that no one opened them. This time, we get days worth of company. I. CANNOT. WAIT. Here is the current state of our living room.

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Literally, I just took that super professional picture.

It is quiet time, which means that Addi’s face is plastered to the TV while Chloe sits and does legos at the table. This is clean compared to usual. I did a quick walk through and picked things up after laying Harper down for her nap. There is a pile of dirty laundry that is multiplying. I hate folding laundry. I hate that shopping cart. I got it with free Pamper’s Rewards points, and another one was purchased with a gift card that I got for buying an absurd amount of diapers during the 2 under 2 phase. I thought the girls would love them. Wrong. 3 years and they don’t care. Harper loves them, so I am thinking I will sell one and keep one.

What was I talking about? Oh, company..

I love showing our families around the new places we live. My dad’s mom was born in Oklahoma, so he is certainly no stranger to this state. But, our town is brand new. And, we are proud to live here. It’s not like in Flint where we wanted to cover our parents’ eyes so that they didn’t fear for our lives.

I love giving our “new home” tour. I would much rather give them the full tour without embarrassment or shame. ha! Wish me luck as I tackle this place while wrestling tiny children. Scott has a meeting tonight, and I would love for him to come home and be in shock that mom boss handled it all.