Friday, March 27, 2009

Easter Weekend

Ok, so we finally decided what we are doing. Its been almost three years since I've been to Petit Jean and today I made reservations for three nights there! I'm so excited, and hope to be able to see a lot of my friends, plus my little girl is plenty old enough for a camping trip and a hike. Don't worry...I won't make her roll the whole way since she can't even crawl, I will carry her, I have a backpack thingy that should work. And for those of you in my profession (I guess that would be my former profession you will totally get this next part) I can't even count how many meetings, trainings and conferences I've sat in where you thought about the park you work at, in my case Petit Jean, and you are asked the definitive question, if you only had one day to visit, what would you do? Three years since I've faced that question at Petit Jean, I still don't have the answer but am faced with the reality of it. I'm only going to have a very short amount of time at Petit Jean, with a five month old, not nearly enough time to hike all of my favorite trails (which is only limited to trails...actually it isn't there are some of my favorite places just off of trails!) and view all of my favorites. Of course, I would love to go to the Richter Overlook at sunset, that is probably one of the most special places for me, because that is where my husband got down on one knee and asked me to marry him. So romantic! Anyway, that's only one of many places I can think of. I would love to stand at the bottom of Cedar Falls and hear the rushing of the water as it crashes into the pool below. I would love to hike Seven Hollows, look to see if the cottonmouth still lives there, and sit for a minute on the rock where I came up with many newspaper articles, program ideas, and contemplated life. I also want to see how much the area has changed in the last three years...after all it has been almost 10 years since the fire. I would love to hike Cedar Creek and look back as the creek peacefully rolls along, unaware of the ride it is about to take. I want to climb on the rocks at Bear Cave, walk along the lake to the Davies Bridge, sit at the edge of the reservoir (formerly my backyard), and I want to have some yummy fajita nachos at Ortegas. And since it is Easter weekend, the most amazing sunrise services take place there. Oh the places I could go (had to throw that in, couldn't help myself!) If you are one of the friends I made there, and you are still in the general vicinity and might possibly be able to make it that weekend (HMMMM....PARK WIFE I MEAN YOU:) we have confirmed reservations!

Ok, so I know many of you have visited the park and know many of the places. If you only had a day, what would you do?

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Goofing Off

Today Emily and I had some free time so we took some posed pictures.

Oh, and Kendall helped:)

Friday, March 20, 2009

Teeth and Tomatoes

Ok, so I have to apologize...I havent posted anything this week and it all comes down to one little bitty thing...a tooth. Yes, I think my baby girl is teething and has been incredibly fussy this week so I havent had much free time. Oh and the 70 degree weather outside could have something to do with it. Unfortunately I didnt think to grab the camera before we went outside. Emily has a swing outside that she thinks is great. And I've been putting this cute little pink gingham hat on her so that she doesnt sunburn her head and her eyes are shaded. She looks adorable, I'll have to get a picture soon:) So the tooth has been causing some issues.

The tomatoes is a totally different story about the little girl I'm babysitting. You see, with my license I am required to do monthly fire drills and quarterly tornado drills. Since today was the first day of spring it seemed like the perfect opportunity to do a tornado drill. So we did one. Then after lunch, she was asking me what we do if the tomato comes. Took me a few minutes to realize she thought we were preparing for an attack of giant vegetables instead of a storm:) I caught on when she said, "So what do we do if the apples come?" All those years of practicing not to laugh when people asked "When do the deer turn into elk?" and "How much bear spray should I spray on myself?" paid off because I didnt just crack, even though I wanted to. I tried to explain what a tornado was, without making her terrified of storms, so I'm not really sure I got through. But, if she ever sees a tomato attacking, she knows just what to do:)

This is the only picture I've taken this week, she was laying there laughing and playing with her puppy but I wasn't quick enough to get a picture of the laugh. it was first thing in the morning, she was still in her jammies:)

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Random thoughts

Ok, so I thought I would actually write something since I have a few minutes before kiddos arrive. Several people have asked how the daycare is going. When I have kids, it is going great. I had a family I really liked, two little boys, and mom got laid off after 2 weeks. She has a job interview today so I'm keeping the boys and hopefully she will get the job and I'll have them back on a full time basis. I still have the little girl that I started with, and her sister after school, but unless mom gets a job in the next two weeks, I only have them for a week and a half more. I am supposed to have a lady come by sometime this week that has two kids, however I havent heard from her since last week, so whether they come or not is anybody's guess. So keep praying for us, we just need to actually have kids here more often than not to make a profit with this, but I must admit, I dont really mind the days no kids show up and getting to spend all that time with my little girl.

Emily had her four month doctors visit last week where we found out she is pretty much average weight, short, and a nice size head (75th percentile). We are still waiting a little while before we start her on solid food, no need to rush things! They said she should be at least double birth weight, which in about a pound she will be. She didnt really like the storm the other night when she was trying to fall asleep...she doze off and then it would thunder and wake her up and she would cry. We wanted to go to bed so we tried just taking her to bed with us. That didnt work either. But eventually it quieted down outside and she fell asleep very quickly. Look at the pictures I posted yesterday. See those nice sparkly jeans...her aunt Jill got those for her. Now EVERYTHING is sparkly including my dryer. I'll look at it this way...adds a little fun to our clothes:)

Also, if I have said there is something I want to do with you in the next few months...I can't help it, I like to plan things, so get with me and we will figure out dates.

Ok, my little one is waking up, so I need to go get her. Enjoy your week everyone!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

New toy

Emily has started geing big enough for a lot of different things, including her exersaucer. She only likes it a few minutes at a time right now.

Thursday, March 5, 2009


This was hard to write, and will probably make you cry, so read with caution, but I had to somehow, say something. As many of you know, I have always believed that when you don't know what to say, take food, and that has worked many times, but it didnt seem to work this time. Eleven years ago when I graduated high school I never would have imagined that I would have two friends that would mean the world to me, and that I would have to watch one of them say goodbye to both her mother and father within a couple years of each other. And then, that I would have to say goodbye to a little sister of my best friend since first grade. What do you say when words can't even begin to describe the feelings?

I've debated for three days on what to write, but the words just don't come. How do you say goodbye to a friend who was only 24 years old, when God chose to take her from this life. I think back to the nights playing UNO by candlelight during a thunderstorm, convincing her that I had to be careful because the lightning would be attracted to my braces, the days we would send her on missions so that she would leave us alone, the beautiful wedding cake she made for me. And then I think about her family, a second family to me for many years growing up. And I can't even imagine the pain they feel right now, but I talk to her sister and she reminds me that we may never see God's plan in this lifetime, but maybe He took Cassie home to bring someone else that is still here to Him. God works in miraculous and mysterious ways, ways that are far beyond our understanding. I'm not sure I could find that view if I were in her shoes, and I thank God I'm not. I have no idea what to say, but yet, it isn't the words that matter, it is being there for a friend. And its remembering Cassie's smile and nervous laughter as she was sure my cake topper was actually going to topple my wedding cake. There is no real way to say goodbye, but I do believe Cassie is in heaven and after the last year and a half, she is finally in no more pain. I'm sure she's in heaven now, and even though we've spent months praying for her recovery, God had a different plan, so now, we must pray for her family. Because as hard as it is to lose her as a friend, her parents and sister have lost a member of their family.

In trying to come up with something to say that would be appropriate and a tribute to Cassie, I have thought of many songs. But I didn't want to quote an entire song, so here's just a few lines from Mercy Me's Homesick.

"You're in a better place I've heard a thousand times, and at least a thousand times I've rejoiced for you. But the reason why I'm broke, the reason why I cry is how long must I wait to be with you. I close my eyes and I see your face, if home's where my heart is then I'm out of place, Lord won't you give me strength to make it through somehow, I've never been more homesick than now."

Cassie, we will miss you!

Monday, March 2, 2009

What a Difference a Year Makes

I started this blog a year ago, right after I found out I was pregnant. Since then, I've started a daycare, however I don't have any kiddos to watch this week, so I'm trying to get caught up on a a few things. I've considered taking Emily to have her picture made, but I can't really justify spending the money whenever I can take decent pictures. Opinions on that?

Emily is growing so fast, she goes to the doctor for her 4-month visit this week and we will ask about starting solid foods. She can sit up with help and loves to laugh and play. Here are some pictures we've taken the last couple days. I think I got some video of her playing the last few days too I may try to get up later.
Mom, what are you doing?
See how big I'm getting, I can hold my head way up high!

Is it just me or does she look like she's up to something?

She was talking...she does that a lot these days! Once she figures out words, it may never be quiet again!

My daddy is so funny! I just have to laugh at him all the time.