September 30, 2009

Baby's Three Months Old

This little guy turned three months old today!
He wore his birthday suit.
No, not that birthday suit! Seriously, get your mind out of the gutter.

This birthday suit. See!?
It's his birthday (June 30) on the calendar in Japanese on his onesie.
Isn't that COOl!?
Thanks Anne for sending that!
Happy Three-Months-Birthday, Danny!
We love you.

September 29, 2009

Waking up with Danilo

It's really late and I'm exhausted, but I wanted to leave you with something fun to see tomorrow morning...

This is the funnest thing to wake up to every morning! I finally had the presence of mind to take a video camera in with me when I went to get Danny up yesterday morning. I could hear him cooing and "talking" before I arrived in the room. Then this is what I saw:

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Es muy tarde y estoy agotada, pero quería dejarles con algo divertido para ver mañana...

¡No hay nada más difertida despertarme cada mañana a esto! Finalmente recordé grabar un video ayer cuando fui a levantar a Danilo primera cosa en la mañana. Pude oirle "hablando" antes de que llegué al cuarto de él. Entonces, él me saludó así:
video

September 27, 2009

I'm a phenomenal cook.

Uh. Ok, no not really.

I managed to ruin cream of mushroom soup yesterday. From a can.

How in the world do you ruin cream of mushroom soup froma can? That's like ruining a pot of boiling water.

Well, first you dump the contents of the can into your soup bowl. Then, rather than reading the directions about what liquid should be added or how much of it should be added, you haphazardly grab milk and pour a little in until it looks about the thickness you want.

I like my soup thick. So I didn't put that much.

Well, when the proportions are wrong, the soup tastes bad. So mine did.

When my soup tastes bad, I think that I should add spices. Last time I ruined my soup by adding salt, so I decided to try something else.

Yes, I've ruined cream of mushroom soup before. Yes, I know that's ridiculous. No, I haven't learned my lesson yet.

So this time, instead of salt, I decided to crush a bullion cube and throw that in. The whole cube. Hey, bullion cubes make all kinds of other things taste yummy, right? Um, it didn't work.

By now my soup tasted even funkier and, determined not to give up, I thought, "Maybe now salt will work."

Just shake your head at me. It's alright. And wipe away those tears of laughter. It's ok.

I added salt.

Needless to say, my soup tasted AWEFUL.

But since I'd put so much effort into it, I decided to warm it back up anyway (because by now it was cold), carry it up to my bedside, and endure a few spoonfulls.

When Alejandro came home from work, he found me miserable in bed with the flu next to a night stand full of soda crackers, orange juice, ice water, a box of tissue and a bowl of cream of mushroom soup poison.

After I told him the story, he made me promise to blog about it.

Anybody got any good soup recipes? Apparently something so simple as soup from a can is not my cup of tea.

September 26, 2009

Better than a Novel

I think I've decided (again) that blogs are better than novels.

Since finding Katie's blog (The Journey) yesterday, I've been hooked. I'm reading it like I read novels. I started from the beginning - when she started writing in 2007 - and am reading every entry through to the present. I'm absolutely enthralled.

This woman - or girl? - is 20 years old. She's lived in Africa for at least two years. She has volunteered in orphanages. She feeds over 400 children daily through a non-profit ministry that she started. She has personally adopted and mothers 14 children.

She's 20.

I think when I was 20 I was taking off my traning bra.

Blogs are in the here and now. They are in real time. Blogs are real people with real stories and real lives you can be a part of through prayer and personal connection by writing. They make me think. They challenge who I am. They create a kind of a record, a scrapbook, if you will, of the good memories. And some of the bad. They give glory to God and chronicle His handiwork.

I've been sick since Friday morning (I think it's the flu), so I've had lots of time to read - given that I'm not able to do much else. I'll warn you now that I'm going to be doing a lot of reflecting on this story of Katie and her African children in the coming days. She has challenged me to the core.

...And I am brainstorming a fun way to do something as a community to send support and resources her way. I can't wait to finish figuring it all out so I can tell you about it! (If you have any ideas, send them my way.)

Katie wrote in 2007:
I believe that life is not about avoiding the storm,
but learning to dance in the rain.


What a beautiful picture; dancing in the rain. When I was a little girl, my mom let my sister and I go play in the rain one afternoon. We were elated at the realization that she was going to let us "break the rules" and get soaked. It was an afternoon I'll never forget. I remember running, splashing, singing, dancing... with utter abandon.

Oh, to live my whole life that way.

Having a son has slowed me down a bit. In a good way! Whereas I used to be eager for the next season of my life, I find myself wanting to soak up every moment of the one I'm in, and just revel in it. Instead of spending moments looking forward to what was ahead and wishing for what's to come, I am much more present to the moment, because I know that it will pass quickly.

What a blessing it is that God gives us these things that pass. It forces us out of taking-for-granted mode and into living-to-the-fullest mode, which is what I am all about.

What do you have to be thankful for today? What season are you rushing through that God has given you as a gift to revel in for the moment? I challenge you to take today, to stop in His Presence, and just be. Just savor it.

September 25, 2009

Amazima

I sit with tears running down my face.

I just found a new blog that is now my favorite. My absolute favorite. Check it out.

I should be nursing Danilo right now. But frankly, he can sleep soundly another 20 minutes while I write this to you all. Because there are children out there starving. And you need to know about them. And you need to know about a woman who is loving and mothering them.

Please, I implore you... click here to read this story.

I have added a link to my side-bar to remind us all to continually read the story of an American 20 year old woman named Katie, her 14 children, and the others she takes in to love and heal. Please join me in prayer for them.
Being sick is lousy. It tends to bring out the self-piteous worst side of me. I threw somewhat of a fit this morning in my mind when I realized that regardless of how cruddy I felt, I was still going to have to get up, shower, take care of someone else - you mean no one's going to take care of ME!? - and even take the cat to the vet.
No, this is NOT a Safeway ad. It was the results of my shopping trip this morning and it's been the majority of my diet for today.

However, the whole sick situation is made significantly better, when amazing husbands like mine do something like this.
(Brought to me in bed.)
And then top it off with something like this.
Seriously? Where did this guy come from? Nevermind. It doesn't even matter. I just praise God he's mine. :) (Although sometime I will have to share with you all where he did come from and how he came to be mine.)

Fortunately, a kind nurse on the phone reassurred me that although I'm feeling miserable, Danilo will likely do better than me and probably not get what I have, unless I breathe directly in his face and purposely sneeze all over him. Apparently - miracle of all miracles that God made our bodies to be - nursing gives him all the good antibodies to the very diseases that I'm exposed to, therefore allowing him to fight it off better, and passes on none of the viruses themselves. Is that not amazing!? God is so cool.

So my little guy just keeps growing and growing. Did you know he's going to be three months old next week? Sheesh. That can't be possible.

By the way, he says hello. See? He's waving.
He can lift his head up pretty well during his tummy time now.
He loves to kick his legs. Especially during a diaper-change.
He's going to be scooting around before I know it!

September 24, 2009

Date Night

Last night was our date night and we decided early in the day that we were going to be very intentional about making it a date night.

We decided to make empanadas. When it becomes Fall-ish and Cold-ish and heading-towards-Winter-ish around here, we always get the urge to make something yummy in the kitchen. So we turned on the radio, put the kiddo to bed, and patted eachother's behinds while we made a mess in the kitchen.
Yes, empanadas are as deliciously scrumptous as they sound. You start by making the masa.
We decided to fill them with meat and cheddar cheese. See my cool Pampered Chef cheese grater thingy? We re-discovered it last night.
Last week we re-discovered the amazing things you can do with a Kirby vaccuum. Did you know you can blow leaves off your driveway and spray paint a wall with that thing?! Amazing! Ok, sorry... back to the point.
Once the meat is cooked and the cheese is grated, then you flatten the masa into a pancake shape and fill it. Then close it with a piece of wax paper or plastic, and use a fork to seal it.
Then you fry it.
Diet? Um... I thought calories don't exist on date nights. Right??
Anyhow... then you've gotta periodically make sure they taste good.
Boy am I glad I have a husband who cooks! (Yes, of course I helped!)

Update...

I'm sick.

I hate being sick. I haven't been sick in over a year (thank the Lord). So I guess I shouldn't complain, especially because it's only just a head cold.

But I still hate being sick.

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Wow, thanks everybody for all your fun advice for losing weight!! That was great, and SO encouraging! :) I currently am down 3 lbs. 17 to go! I'll keep you updated so you can keep cheering me on!

Anyone want to join me on the pound-losing journey?

I must say, though, it will be much easier to keep this up once I quit my job. If anyone wants to keep from dying of starvation, just get a job at HCJB Global. There is always food there and rarely is it healthy.

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MckMama read my blog!!! That's like Elvis singing your song! (Ok, maybe a little dramatic, but still very cool.)

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It snowed here in Colorado this week. I, personally, am ecstatic. Because I've been sweaty since May.

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Here comes a post about our date night...

September 23, 2009

Poop and Weeds Wednesday

This is a weekly devotional that stems (pun totally intended) from an experience I had about a year or so ago. One afternoon I was inspired to go clean up my back yard. At the time, it was filled with weeds and our dog's poop. Somewhere in between pulling weeds and carrying the loads to the trash can, I felt God whispering to me to write a devotional. So I put down my gardening tools, took off my gloves, and headed up to the computer.

This is part 3 of Poop and Weeds Wednesday.
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Thank You God for Poop and Weeds

Mark 4:3-20
"Listen. What do you make of this? A farmer planted seed... Some fell in the weeds; as it came up, it was strangled among the weeds and nothing came of it. Some fell on good earth and came up with a flourish, producing a harvest exceeding his wildest dreams.

"Are you listening to this? Really listening?
‘…Whose eyes are open but don't see a thing,

Whose ears are open but don't understand a word,
Who avoid making an about-face and getting forgiven.’”

"He continued, "Do you see how this story works? All my stories work this way. The farmer plants the Word… The seed cast in the weeds represents the ones who hear the kingdom news but are overwhelmed with worries about all the things they have to do and all the things they want to get. The stress strangles what they heard, and nothing comes of it. But the seed planted in the good earth represents those who hear the Word, embrace it,
…and produce a harvest beyond their wildest dreams."

The Message Bible
Some verses omitted

Part III: Beware of Getting Poked

There are several types of weeds in my back yard, but the ones that rule, are tall, ugly, and easy to develop quite a poignant hatred toward. The worst thing about these particular weeds is that they are absolutely covered from top to bottom by painfully sharp thorns. The first time I tried to grab one of these weeds, I didn’t realize how strong these points are. This weed is particularly sturdy, and its points are especially fine. You can image how quickly I pulled back at the first stab of pain when I tried to pull it out. I drove myself to Home Depot and picked out the thickest, toughest pair of gardening gloves I could find. But no matter what I used, they didn’t protect me from being stabbed and poked. Finally, I found the trick to getting rid of these nasty plants: I have to use a gardening tool to push the plant up from under the soil. Only down by the very base, can I grasp the weeds without getting poked. It takes slow, patient, gentle work. Hurrying only yields pain.

When resolving deep issues in our lives, it take gentle patience and loving-kindness, whether the issue is our own, or an issue in someone else’s life. Sometimes we look at an issue in the life of a loved one and we want the issue to go away as quick as possible. We try to help them rip that sucker out as fast as we can! But inevitably they get hurt, and sometimes so do we. Painstaking gentleness and care must be taken.

September 22, 2009

Diet

That's it.

I'm going on a diet.

My first official "diet," that actually gets called that.

I'm starting immediately.

My motive: I'm Sick. And. Tired. of looking at a mountain of clothes in my closet that I can't wear.

My goal: 20 lbs. (aah! Did I just write that!?)

My method: Eat only when I'm hungry. Stop when I'm full. Stop before I feel stuffed. Drink lots of water. Like, engorge myself with water. Till I gotta' go to the bathroom every five minutes. And lastly, exercise at least three days a week. (Except that portion of the diet will have to start in October - after I quit my job.)

Favorite jeans, here I come!!

(Everybody please comment! I need all the encouragement I can get. :) Plus, it will just make my day to get, like, 50 million comments on my blog.)

September 21, 2009

Faces

God, can we keep him?

I promise I'll take really good care of him. He needs a home on this earth.

I'll feed him every day. And clean up his poop.
Look, he likes me!

See, he's really smart. He's thinkin'.

(Oh yeah, You already know that.)
I promise to love him every day.
Wow, he's the best present we've ever gotten!
Thanks, God for letting us keep him.

September 18, 2009

Weekend Fun

This weekend has been somewhat ho-hum, but wonderfully relaxing. We've done things like... recover from my first week back to work, and my 2nd to last week of work before I quit - which basically means I'm working like a maniac as I try to prepare things as best I can for the future manager of my department. His name is Andres and he is wonderful! Please pray for him as he just took the first step up a very steep hill called Learning Curve.

So, needless to say, I've thoroughly enjoyed dinner, a movie at home, sleeping late, hangin' with my two boys, having friends over for dinner, having friends over for breakfast, church, oh and a Kirby vaccuum demonstration (even though we already have one I was helping someone who is practicing his presentation and low-and-behold you wouldn't believe all the cool things we learned that our Kirby can do! - so then we went crazy cleaning the house! "Ooooh, look Honey, we can use it to clean this too!!"). Yes, this is a low-key weekend for me. Yes, I know I need to slow my life down. Yes, actually I kind of like my life this way. Yes, I know I'm rambling and I'm writing horribly long run-on sentences.

Ok, back to the point.

On the other hand, last weekend we had a much more adventuresome three days because we decided to go camping! Again! We just had to squeeze in one more trip before it gets too cold. And before Melissa's tummy is too big to squeeze into her tent. Ok, actually, you could fit a whole tribe in that tent. Melissa and Matt (and little Caleb) put up with us while we crashed their camping trip were our companions for the weekend... and they have an obscenely huge tent. I'm not lying. I wish I had a picture.

Here... meet Melissa:

...and her husband Matt.
...and little Caleb! (He'll be joining us sometime after Thanksgiving.)
Our happy little family joined them. Alejandro, Danilo and I:
Oh yeah, and the Tobster:
We spent the weekend building fires (well Alejandro and Matt did) and avoiding the smoke sitting cozily around them keeping warm and eating fire-cooked meals.
See how cozy my little peanut is?! And how very CUTE he looks?!
The weather was really nice. (Uh, most of the trip.) Danilo got tons of attention.


We even decided to stay two nights instead of one. This, of course, required a trip to Safeway for extra diapers, hamburgers and hotdogs. But that's no big deal.
Macgyver My husband helped us by rigging a tarp to give us shade and protection from the possible rain.
Which was a really good thing, because about two hours after he got it up,

It.

Poured.

For about three hours.

We started to wonder if staying an extra night was a good idea.
But we waited it out, stayed cozy, and let Danilo entertain us while we wondered if we were going to actually be able to cook the hamburgers and hotdogs purchased that afternoon.
Sure enough, it did clear up and we dried out.
All in all... it was well worth the trip. Fun, fellowship, s'mores, smoky clothes, dirty hair, camp fires and a cuddly baby - the recipe for a perfect camping trip!