Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Day 957: Chubby Cherub


I went back to my regular yoga class this morning.  And it was fabulous.  It felt good to be back.  It was good for my back.

And at the end, I finally had a response to my current status that I appreciated.

The truth is, my figure has gone back pretty closely to what it was pre-baby.  I still have extra pounds and some squishiness and extra skin, but I fit most of my regular clothes again.

This hasn't gone without the notice of all those around me.  And elicited responses such as:  "That's disgusting!" and "That's so unfair!" and "I hate you!  I really hate you!", etc.

As most of these have come from my friends, I know they mean well.  It's just that, when that's all I hear, it gets kind of mean and sad.

But, this morning at the end of yoga everyone was welcoming back and then they began discussing my figure.  A girl who doesn't know me very well asked how old Darling A is.  When she looked surprised at my response, I thought she was judging me for bringing my tiny baby to the child care center so young.  But, apparently, she wasn't the only one with that reaction and it wasn't because I brought my small baby, but about how I look.  Our instructor quickly responded by saying, "I know, right?"  And then added, "But she works hard, people.   Really really hard."

And that was a Joyful Moment for me.  I'm not vain about being relatively thin again after having a baby.  And I feel very fortunate for it.  But, I do work hard.  I was running and doing yoga quite intensely right up until the end!  So, it was nice to have someone finally make that connection rather than being jealous.

And then I took this sweet picture while Baby B was on time out with a horrible horrible tantrum.  And that was a fun Joyful Moment in spite of the background of screaming.

Wishing you all Joyful Moments accompanied by happiness and no screams!

Monday, July 30, 2012

Day 956: I Feel So Great I Could Cry

That is a direct quote.

From me.

Said while running.  With my best friend.  As crazy as it seems, HH and I have never once gone running together.  And this evening we finally remedied that.

Now, I have a secret to share:  I've never really loved running other people.  I don't mind running with a friend on occasion, but for the most part, I enjoy being left with just my own thoughts when I run.  So, imagine my surprise when I found myself loving every minute of my run with HH tonight.  Maybe because I could still share each and everyone of the ridiculous thoughts that popped into my head, knowing HH wouldn't mind.

It was such a great and fun and fabulous Joyful Moment.  And it was so great to be running again.  Really running, without having to push a stroller.

Of course, there was the heat.  It was hot.  And humid.  And miserable.

And we about died when it was all over.

But it was still a Joyful Moment.

Wishing you all Joyful Moments far away from horrible heat and humidity!

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Day 955: Chatty Patty

Today was a good day.  Nice to be back at church.

Sunday School was taught by a wonderful man.  His sincerity and earnestness about the gospel of Jesus Christ and teaching it, or rather, guiding a wonderfully spiritual discussion are so inspiring!  It was such a great lesson.  And a Joyful Moment shared by all present, I'm sure.

And after church, I went out for Visiting Teaching.  Always Joyful Moments.  On our second visit, I got a bit carried away--this happens because I'm basically just hanging out with my friends--and we stayed a bit long.  But, we were having such a great visit.

All in all, a great day.

Wishing you all chatty Joyful Moments!

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Day 954: Yoga Is My Friend!

Darling A turned 6 weeks today.  So, she's now welcome at the child care center at the gym.

And HH agreed to come to yoga with me--something he'd once vowed never to do again.  This made me SO happy!  It was so fabulous to be back.  Healing for my back.   And fun to do with my HH.  Joyful Moments for sure!

The rest of the day was pretty chill.  We made a list of things needing to get done and managed to accomplish more than I expected.  Crossing things of my list is always a satisfying Joyful Moment for me, you know.

Laundry was one of the items.  HH was good enough to come get me when he saw this going on.  That is Baby B's lovey sheet.  He's pretty good about letting us wash them, but was apparently giving it just one last snuggle before saying goodbye for the next hour.  A funny Joyful Moment sharing a laugh with my HH.

Wishing you all Joyful Moments and a friend in yoga!

Friday, July 27, 2012

Day 953: Snap Back

Well, I didn't sleep great thanks to the back pain, but it still felt a little better this morning than it did yesterday.

So, I did what any bright individual would do and went for a run.

Oddly enough, sitting and sleeping seem to be what cause my back to hurt the most.  Walking around the house and going for a light jog actually make it feel better.

This was a good thing because I desperately needed to get out to shake the last little bit of the D from last night.  And it worked.

The run was a Joyful Moment--the weather was about 15 degrees cooler than we've been having, so it was beautiful and perfect!

We had a little bit of rain two nights this week.  We need that so badly, that was a Joyful Moment both times.

And then, being able to attend a friend's Olympics Party this evening was also a Joyful Moment.  I was assigned to bring bruschetta, but with my back pain I thought I would have to back out.  So, it was a Joyful Moment to be able to do that still.

The real Joyful Moment came when (after a long explanation that I'm going to skip), I was able to do a few dishes for a friend while alone in her house.  It was a super rushed job, so not the best quality, but I hope that having her sink not quite so full of dishes when she got home that night was a Joyful Moment for her, at least!

Wishing you all Joyful Moments and some fun Olympic action!

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Day 952: Tulle-ing Around

We ventured out to the movies with some friends today.  It was fun.  Baby B did much better than expected, thanks to a small tub of popcorn lasting him just about the whole movie.

Unfortunately, he was too light to hold his own seat down and we got there too late for a booster seat.  So, I spent the entire movie pressing his seat down with my knee, while holding Darling A in the Moby Wrap, fetching a bottle out of the diaper bag halfway through, feeding said bottle to a now-out-of-the-wrap Darling A, holding Baby B's popcorn while he took a drink, holding his drink while he got resituated with his popcorn, holding both the drink and popcorn (and bottle!) while he had a mini-meltdown, etc.

It.  Was.  Fun.

Actually, it was really good to get out and be with people.  I'm going a little stir crazy without my older two to chat with during the day!  So, the movie was a Joyful Moment, even with all of the crazy maneuvering.

About an hour after we returned home, I realized that my back was getting increasingly painful, until suddenly, I could barely walk and could no longer stand up straight.

I called HH in tears.  As I told him about our morning, he pointed out that the movie situation was probably what pushed my already struggling back over the edge.

He's so smart.

Anyway, so the rest of the day was kind of rough.  I babied it and did some stretches and iced it and it's feeling a bit better now, thankfully.

Unfortunately, that and some other stuff that happened at dinner started me down the path to Depression.  HH had planned on taking Baby B fishing tonight.  Baby B was kind of going crazy because he doesn't cope well with me not being at my A-Game, so I told them to still go so I could get a break.  But, as they left, I got a little panicky that the depression would set in really bad in the quiet lonesome without them.

So, I broke out the tulle and got a craftin'!

This was the finished product.  It's to match one of the dresses HH's mom got for her while she was here.  I'm so excited to see them together!  But, as you can see, my model was sleeping, so I thought better of putting her in the dress too.  Total Joyful Moment in putting this on her.

Anyway, staying busy and producing something so fun and cute was really good and helped me to stay out of the Depression for the most part.


Wishing you all Joyful Moments that are tulle-tally awesome!  (Haha, I know.)

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Day 951: Visiting Friends

One of my good friends had a baby four days after me, I'm not sure if I mentioned that, or not.  We've both tried to respect the other's privacy and new found busyness and haven't actually spoken since having our babies.

Today, our schedule finally opened up in the afternoon (meaning, children woke up from naps earlier than usual).  So, I called her up and invited us over to her house.  I'm classy like that.  But, I knew she wouldn't mind and she'd tell me if it would inconvenience her.

Fortunately, she welcomed us.

And hanging out with her was such a fun (if not, long overdue) Joyful Moment.  We had a great afternoon catching up and just hanging out.  Plus, I really needed to get out.  Desperately.  I'm still loving every minute with my Darling A and *most* with Baby B.

One of those fun moments is when I inadvertently bug Darling A while she's eating.  I promise I don't do it intentionally.  Usually, it's something like rubbing her back.  It seems her back is quite ticklish, so this annoys her when she's trying to get a meal in.  But, I forget.  And then she makes the cutest and funniest little noise.  Anyone who's ever been chastised by a nursing newborn probably knows what I'm talking about.  It's fun.

Wishing you all fun Joyful Moments in getting chastised by someone absolutely adorable!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Day 950: Show-Off-Your-Daughter-At-Work Day

Today was a day of outings.  The kids and I ran a few errands this morning.  Nothing too eventful and we wrapped things up by heading out to HH's office.  We had Joyful Moments during lunch together, but even more Joyful Moments showing off our chubby little cherub to his co-workers and hearing them coo and fuss over her.

Then I had a bit of a frustrating afternoon of needy children.

Fortunately, we had a bit of an unexpected reprieve during some sibling bonding time.

She's sneezing here, not crying.

Isn't her sweet little outfit adorable?  Recognize it, Meg?  We love it!  It got compliments all day long.

Wishing you all Joyful Moments accompanied by a day full of compliments!

Monday, July 23, 2012

Day 949: Back To Routine

Darling A didn't have her best night ever, but it was much much better than the night before.  And even gave me the energy to get up and go to the gym.  I got a short jog in.  The heat was sweltering, but I still feel much better on the days I get a bit of exercise in.

The morning had its fair share of hiccups, but the main thing is--the important things got done.  Baby B and I had some fun times playing and reading together.  Joyful Moments.  I got plenty of snuggling and cuddling time with Darling A.  Oh!  I can't get enough of her.  She is just one tiny bundle of Joyful Moments.

And my parents are finally home from a long vacation overseas.  I've wanted to call my mom so many times over the past couple weeks.  It was really nice to finally be able to talk to her again.  A Joyful Moment there.

And then there was Family Home Evening tonight.  A small and quiet affair without the oldest two.  We sang a bunch of childrens' songs and watched Baby B dance around in the way only he does.  So cute!  HH and I laughed and laughed!  And we finished off with a phone call to the older kids to hear what fun they've been having.  It was so many simple Joyful Moments.

A cute picture done by Sweet P that I came across while organizing their art drawer (I haven't been able to resist the urge to clean out all of the kids' spaces).  It made me smile.

A good day all in all.

Wishing you all simple Joyful Moments!

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Day 948: Sleepless In The Middle O' Nowhere

Last night was dreadful.  HH and I had to tag-team it all night.  My darling Darling A wouldn't sleep unless someone was holding her.  It was exhausting.

HH was out fishing with some friends at first.  And I'm glad he got to spend some time out having fun. But, it was exhausting trying to put her to bed by myself.  Which was why I was still up when he arrived home shortly after midnight.  Exhausted.

Anyway, the tag-teaming rolled into today.  We missed church.  I was still sleeping and HH was taking care of Baby B, so I could sleep.  It was awfully nice of him.  I did feel bad about missing church, though.

So, there weren't really any profound Joyful Moments.  Just those found in being with my family.  Playing blocks with Baby B (although, he kept telling me to get up, as I was "playing" while laying on the carpet because I was so tired!) and snuggling with my beautiful Darling A.

Wishing you all Joyful Moments and plenty of rest lasting longer than 45 minutes at a time!

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Day 947: Family of Four

Today was a pretty laid back Saturday.  But, everything we did, we did all together.  And that was a Joyful Moment.

It was very different being just a small family of four again.  With two little kiddos.  And so quiet!

Except when Baby B had the occasional tantrum.  Then things were quite loud and unpleasant.

Fortunately, there weren't too many of those.

Anyway, it was a nice, casual day--and there was a Joyful Moment in all of that!

Wishing you all Joyful Moments that are just perfectly casual!

Friday, July 20, 2012

Day 946: Nine Years (Plus 10 Days)

After I posted last night, everything kind of fell apart.  HH and I started into a bit of a bad fight and it wasn't until quite a while that I realized that the whole reason we were fighting was because I was completely exhausted.  I haven't slept much over the past few days.  Darling A has gotten even noisier in her sleep--if that's possible.

So, then I just kind of collapsed into a heap of tears.

HH helped me feel a bit better and took care of Darling A as much as possible.  And then he stayed home for a bit this morning so I could sleep in.  That was a bit of a Joyful Moment for me.

Then I went to an appointment with the lactation specialist at the pediatrician's office.  Darling A has a lazy latch and it's been getting worse.  And she's been pretty much just sleeping and not eating at all for the past couple of days.  Super stressful for me.  So, getting some assistance (and a little reassurance about all of my assessments of the situation) was a relief and another Joyful Moment.

Of course, turning to the side and discovering Baby B devouring an entire pack of gum from my purse while the specialist and I had been so intent on working on my latch.  I caught him with just one piece left in the pack.

This is the second time he's done this in the past week.  That's good for the digestive system, right?

Anyway, the day gradually got better.

And we finished it off by having a wonderful dinner date tonight to finally celebrate our anniversary in a good way.  We left Baby B with a babysitter and just brought Darling A with us.  She slept most of the time and we had a great time just enjoying a quiet (and yummy) dinner.  Including a yummy dessert.  It was wonderful.

But mostly, just having some time together was the best part of the Joyful Moment.

Wishing you all Joyful Moments--even if they are 10 days in the waiting!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Day 945: Missing Two Pieces Of My Heart

This morning started bright and early.  Blake's mom left this morning.  And took Sweet P and Little M with her.  They could not have been more excited!  I wanted to get a picture of them getting ready to go with their grandma, but, of course, Darling A woke up hungry right at the moment that we started to say good bye.

So, I stayed inside trying not to cry while HH saw them off.

And knowing how much fun they're going to have is a Joyful Moment for me.  I'm just a little sad for me.

Although, watching Baby B flourish under all of the attention in their absence has been a delightful day full of Joyful Moments.  He's been so happy!  And he's handled the day's little setbacks so much better than under normal circumstances.  We only had a couple bad tantrums, and they weren't until the end of the day when he was tired.

It's amazing how easy it is to have two children!  I only wish I'd found it so simple when I actually was the mother of only two.  Then it seemed very busy.

I accomplished so much today!  Joyful Moments for sure.

Wishing you all Joyful Moments and a little extra attention from those you love the most!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Day 944: Pie Rush

We went to Village Inn tonight for dinner.  Free pie on Wednesdays, you know.  It was a fun dinner, but the best part was after dinner.  On the way to taking Little M to his TaeKwonDo class, he said, "Thanks for coming up with the idea for this, Mommy!"

Ah!  Music (and a Joyful Moment) to a mama's ears.

He's really been coming around the past couple of weeks.  I think my sweet little boy is finally returning to me.  He's even admitted to me a couple of times that I've been "fun".  And he's been so sweet and cuddly and loving.  So many Joyful Moments.

Wishing you all Joyful Moments that are exactly what you've been longing for for months!

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Day 943: Getting Hitched

HH scheduled an appointment for us to get a hitch put on the back of the van this morning.

If that isn't a Joyful Moment, I don't know what is?

Fortunately, there was a park nearby (located by HH when I expressed concern over this outing).  And there were plenty of Joyful Moments to be had there watching the kids play with their grandma.  And her play with them.  It was a fun morning.

Then we had a laid back and enjoyable remainder of the day.

Wishing you all Joyful Moments in less than reputable parts of town!

Monday, July 16, 2012

Day 942: Another Grandma

I had an experience this morning that is really pretty personal to share, but I will say that it was amazing and more than I could have asked for.  It put to rest the two things that have been bothering me the most.  One of which being The Depression.  And now, I finally am feeling optimistic and even excited about our future.

I can't express what a beautiful Joyful Moment that was.

And another Joyful Moment was when my mother-in-law arrived at our house this afternoon.  Lots of Joyful Moments watching her with the kids.  Especially, watching her hold her newest grand daughter and how happy it made her.

Wishing you all Joyful Moments that are beautiful and give you the optimism!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Day 941: I Love My Pump

It's a long, pointless story, so I'll skip it.

Suffice it to say, Darling A did not eat very well for the first half of today.

I've been using my breast pump daily since we purchased it, but sometimes I've still felt a little guilty over the cost.

Today, it was my Joyful Moment.  And I am SO glad we bought it.  Worth every last penny on a day like today.

TMI?  Sorry.

I also enjoyed several Joyful Moments just snuggling with my sleepy, chubby little Darling A.  All day long.  She is such a privilege to mother and love.  As much fun as it is to show her off, I kind of don't like going places because I don't want to share her.


But, also, HH and I agreed that it's best not to have other people hold her for a little while longer still.  At least, not in public places, like church, where she could wind up getting passed around.  I've never been okay with that.

I don't mind sharing her with HH, though.  It's so cute to watch the two of them together.  I love how completely enamored he is with her.  I love that he doesn't want to put her down and how cute he is when he talks to her and snuggles her.

There just something special about daddies and daughters.

And mamas and sons.

Baby B wanted to help sweep tonight.  And then he told me to take a picture.  This was just before bed time, so we were in the process of getting into pajamas.  Usually, he wears clothes.

But, I've had to let so much slide with how full my hands are now, I think we move a little closer to White Trash status every day.

Right when I got out the camera, to accommodate his request, he told me, "You no take a picture!"

I love the constancy of a two-year old.

Wishing you all Joyful Moments and the freedom to change your mind as often as you please!

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Day 940: Pulling Through

Yeah.  I woke up with a bad attitude again this morning.

Actually, I didn't wake up with it, but it hit not too long after getting up.  Things were just quite overwhelming in the kitchen.

But, we muddled through our morning and then I went out for the groceries and gave myself a pep talk pretty much the whole time about choosing to have a good attitude the rest of the day.

I faltered a bit when I first got home and no less than 29 different people and things needed me all at once.  (Maybe a slight exaggeration, but still...)

But, I regained control and we had a good remainder of the day.

Complete with a swim at the pool.

I didn't actually get in, but I got to come along this time and even wore my swimsuit just for good measure.  And it fit better than expected, which was a Joyful Moment.  But, against my better judgement, I got on the scale at the gym and let's just say, that was not a Joyful Moment.

Fortunately, watching these four have fun was a lot of fun for me and definitely a Joyful Moment.

And then I beat HH in a game of SkipBo tonight.  Even though it's pretty much a game of luck, he wins 90% of the time (for some reason, we played this game a lot during our courtship), so anytime I win, it's a massive Joyful Moment for  me.

wishing you all massive Joyful Moments far far away from any scales!

Friday, July 13, 2012

Day 939: Outing

A couple of days ago I told the kids we'd go to the zoo today.

And then this morning, as we were getting ready, I began to seriously wonder what in the world I'd been thinking.  How could I possibly take them on an outing all by myself?!

But it was too late to back down, having already told them we'd go.

So, go we did.

We got there just in time for the penguin show and Sweet P won herself a free train ride by accurately counting how many fish her assigned penguin ate.  With some help from me and Little M.  Their excitement over this was definitely a Joyful Moment.

As was surviving the zoo outing without any incident.

And enjoying these flowers more every day.

Lilies really are the overachievers in the flower world.  Look how they bloom without any regard for the flowers around them.

They're beautiful though.

I think I should be a little more of an overachiever myself.  At least, when it comes to having a better attitude.

HH would probably think that was pretty beautiful, too.  Between you and me, I think he might be getting a little tired of my grumpy attitude.  But he bears it all quite patiently.

Wishing you all Joyful Moments and a little appropriate overachieving in your own life!

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Day 938: You Can Pick Your Friends

What mama wouldn't get a Joyful Moment from such a pose?

Almost makes me forget what a complete terror he was all day.

I can't count how many times I almost picked up the phone to request that HH come back home.  But I reminded myself each time that my attitude and coping skills are a choice.  And I mustered through.  Not necessarily a Joyful Moment, but I'm proud of myself anyway.

We went to a little musical gathering a the local children's museum this evening.  It took almost the full hour for the kids to warm up and have a good time.  But Baby B found the water misters to be a great time.  He was soaked before long.  And couldn't be happier for it.

Wishing you all Joyful Moments that don't involve being caught with your finger up your nose!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Day 937: Better

Today went much better than yesterday.  Being listened to so well by HH last night seems to be what I really needed.

And then kids and I are getting into a bit of a routine now.  We went for another walk.  It was Little M's turn again and he didn't put up a fuss this time.  I wore my Five Fingers and actually jogged a bit as he rode his scooter.  It was a lot of fun.  Until he wore out prematurely and he barely moved along.

But, it was a fun Joyful Moment while it lasted.

Watching the kids play at the park after was another Joyful Moment.  In addition to visiting with a few different friends who also happened to be there.

And then lunch time hit.

I realized today that Lunch Time is the worst time.

Everyone is so demanding and crazy at that time.

But, we survived.

And the rest of day went smoothly, as well.

More Joyful Moments hanging out with Little M this evening at TaeKwonDo and then going to pick out his new backpack (!) in preparation for Kindergarten.  He's a fun little companion when he's all on his own.

Wishing you all Joyful Moments with peaceful Lunch Times!

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Day 937: Not

This is not the day I wanted it to be.

Things did not go as planned.

Things did not go as desired.

I did not appreciate these nearly as I ought.

Nor, did I celebrate the accomplishment of 9 years of marriage with my best friend.

These are the delightful fruits of The Depression.

Thankfully, my HH was not deterred by all this.

He has been dealing with it for 9 years--for better, or for worse.

But, once again he achieved the impossible, listened to all my woes, and managed to brighten my dreary outlook.

And he was my Joyful Moment.

Wishing you all impossible Joyful Moments and a personal champion for 9 years and beyond!

Monday, July 9, 2012

Day 936: We All Scream

Well, we might not have all screamed, literally.  But, everyone had a bad case of the grumpies at one time, or another today.

And there was plenty of awfulness.

Fortunately, I enjoyed a nice walk with Sweet P this morning.  She rode her scooter and I did my best to keep up.  I had to jog a bit from time to time.  Which was nice, if not a little painful.  And still a Joyful Moment.

Then, came more grumpies.

But, we finished the day off with a nice Family Home Evening--a lesson on gratitude taught by Little M.

And ice cream cones for treats.  And this face brought Joyful Moments.

Wishing you all Joyful Moments with ice cream treats at the end of a day full of grumpies!

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Day 935: Returning

Today was my first day back at church.

And Darling A's first time ever.

It went pretty well.

I received plenty of flattering comments about my progress in returning to my pre-pregnancy form which is always a nice Joyful Moment.  Of course, I'm not all the way back yet... and I'd really like to be. (c:

Here we are in our Sunday best.  Those are my new shoes from yesterday.  Snake skin, if you can't tell from the photo.  They are just fun!  And wearing them today was another Joyful Moment for me.

Showing off my sweet Darling A to our friends and congregation was another wonderful Joyful Moment.

Then we came home and I had a bit of a meltdown as about 40 thousand different things went wrong all at once and I sat helpless while feeding a very hungry Darling A.  Frustrating.  And 100% overwhelming.  And I went to my room and cried.

After a while, I decided to try again.  By this time HH was there and had taken care of lunch for the kids and a good portion of the kitchen clean up.  I cannot seem to keep my house clean.  At all.  And for me--someone who thrives in a clean environment and withers in a messy, cluttered one--that is so hard to take!

So, walking into a much cleaner kitchen was a Joyful Moment as well.

And then having the kids come up and tell me dinner smelled good and they were really excited to eat it (when does this ever happen?!) and then actually eating it really well--that was a wonderful Joyful Moment, too.

So, it was a day full of ups and downs.  But, I'm just grateful for the ups.

Wishing you all Joyful Moments and more ups than downs!

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Day 934: Jittery Problems

I'm driving myself insane.

I find myself thinking up countless errands to run whenever HH is home and I can leave the kids with him.

Which means that on days like today (a Saturday), I hardly see any of them all day.

And I am typically out spending money.  This cannot be good for our budget.

And I'm really tired and annoyed with everyone and everything by the end of the day.

And I missed my nap.

But it's kind of like an OCD issue, or something.

I've got to find a way to stop it before I go crazy.

One good thing came out of it today, though.  I found some really cute shoes on clearance at Target.  I love Target's shoe clearance.  Some of my favorite shoes have come into my life that way.  And picking up these shoes today was definitely a Joyful Moment.

And listening to HH tell me all about the super fabulous time they had swimming (while I was at the car shop getting a 30,000 mile tune up--sweet) was a Joyful Moment.  Mainly because my kids really need fun outings these days and it made me so happy to hear how successful this one was.

But, it made me a little sad that I couldn't be there, too.

And then, tonight, was a really great Joyful Moment.  Baby B suddenly was in a really fantastic mood. Like I haven't seen in months.  For a bit, my sweet little carefree Baby B returned and was just so happy and so fun to watch as he enticed his daddy to stop cleaning the kitchen and come play with him.  I was on the couch with a horrible headache, but it just made me so so so very happy to watch him be so happy.

Unfortunately, it came to an abrupt end.  But, it lasted longer than I expected.

And it was great while it lasted.

Wishing you all Joyful Moments that are great while they last!

Friday, July 6, 2012

Day 933: Long Overdue

Today is one of my sister's birthday.

I haven't talked to any of my sisters in far too long.  But I think it's been the longest with this one.  So, tonight's birthday phone call to her was definitely today's Joyful Moment.  It wasn't very long.  But it was great to visit with her.

And get her reassurance that we will survive this fourth addition to our family.  (c:

Baby B has been doing a little better this week, but today was a bit of a regression.  Translation:  Tons of screaming and tantrums and screaming tantrums.

This made for a not-so-fun day.

But we survived.

These tiny little hands bring me Joyful Moments every day!
And another meal was given to us.  So, I didn't have to cook.  Very nice.

Wishing you all Joyful Moments and more frequent sisterly phone calls!

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Day 932: A Sleeping Babe

Is this not perfection?

She is my Joyful Moment so many times every day.  She's so sweet and precious and... darling!  All of the squishy face in this picture.  And the complete comfort, even with a foot touching her elbow.  You try sleeping like that!

She is so beautiful.

Today was actually a pretty good day.

Amazingly, my kiddos let me sleep until 9:45.  Yeah.  That's not a typo.  I still can't believe it.  But it was a Joyful Moment for sure.

So, as a reward, I took them out to lunch.  Just a local fast food joint (healthy, I know), with a playscape.  They ate.  Enjoyed free ice cream cones (thanks to coupons from the Summer Reading Program at the library).  And then played for a long while on the playscape.  It was great fun for all.  And a Joyful Moment for me to watch them having so much fun together.

More Joyful Moments snuggling with Baby B when he came into my room (where I was trying to nap in spite of a very very noisy little sleeping Darling A next to me) and snuggled for several minutes after his nap.

And a Joyful Moment eating a delicious dinner brought by yet another friend.  How spoiled am I?

And more Joyful Moments picking out a card for HH for our upcoming anniversary.  And then finding a random, but hilarious card that I had to buy to send to someone.  Still determining who...  I love shopping for cards!

And then bringing this in from the garden tonight!

Wishing you all Joyful Moments and an occasional morning wasted away in sweet sweet slumber!

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Day 931: Jumpin' For Freedom

We seriously had so many priceless photo ops today.  I wish I could share them all with you.

It was a great Fourth of July.

My first Joyful Moment was deciding (very very last minute--the family was loaded in the car and I was still in my p.j.'s) to go to the church-sponsored breakfast at the park.

As with my last social outing, I had a panic attack before forcing myself to get out of the car.  But, then I put on my forced smile and ended up having a good time re-connecting with so many friends.  And, of course, introducing Darling A to the world.

Later in the morning, I had more Joyful Moments watching the kids play on the slip n' slide.

We enjoyed a nice dinner off the grill--brat burgers, hot dogs, and steaks!  HH did the honors this time and it all tasted delicious!

And then the fun began:

And I captured a surprising number of photos with children airborne.  Pretty impressive, really.  We debated going to a big party at a friend's house, but wound up just hanging out at home and enjoying the view from our own driveway.  HH and the kids had picked out some fun fireworks earlier in the day.  The best was one that launched a ton (maybe 30?) of parachutes.  The wind caught them and blew them over to a neighboring field as all of the kids (ours and the neighbors) took off chasing them.  Honestly, that one got a bigger response than any of the other fireworks lit by our neighbors.  You gotta know your audience... which HH excels at.

Even after we ran out, we sat back and enjoyed the larger fireworks going off all over the neighborhood sky.

I've experienced the Fourth in several different states and places.  But I've never been anywhere that goes as nuts over the fireworks as they do here in the Middle of Nowhere.  For days on end.  It's kind of like living in a war zone.

Which brings us to my final Joyful Moment for the day.  I have so much respect and gratitude for all those who have sacrificed to keep this beautiful country free and safe.  HH and I were recently talking about what it might have been like during those earlier wars that all four of our grandpas fought in.  I cannot fathom the courage and steadfastness it took to walk into a wall of fire, but I am so grateful that they possessed it.  And grateful that they all lived to have families of their own, so we can raise our happy family today.

And I am grateful to the God who protected them and continues to protect each of us and our freedoms.

Happy Fourth!

Wishing you all Joyful Moments that literally make you jump for joy!

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Day 930: I Was Going To...

I was going to post about today being a surprisingly good day... about pumping 6 oz. this morning (not much for some, but a PR for me)... about forcing a grumpy, obstinate Little M to take his turn to go for a walk with me and Darling A when he wanted to stay and play at the gym with Sweet P and Baby B and then having a great time chatting with him and playing at the park after even though he hadn't believed it possible to have fun with me...about laughing and giggling with Baby B before naps...about having fun watching the kids play Wii together and seeing how cute Baby B was when he got a chance to hold a remote...about the yummy pizza a friend brought by for dinner...about a fun night out with my daughters to get Sweet P's hair cut...about watching our precious little Darling A together as HH and I marveled over her adorableness...etc.

But then, she woke up.  I got her dressed in her jammies, and we came downstairs to do this post.  As I sat down at the computer to feed her while posting, she paused and looked straight into my eyes.  And I could tell she was actually locked onto my eyes and focused.  I smiled and cooed a hello to her.


I am totally serious.  And not at all delusional.  It was beautiful and totally intentional.  I mean, she was looking right into my eyes and did it immediately following my smile at her.

I know it's way early.  But it's true.

And anyone who has had a baby smile at them can confirm what a Joyful Moment it is.

Especially, when it's your child.

Especially, when it's their first smile.

Especially, when you love and adore them so.

My Joyful Moments
Wishing you all Joyful Moments that stop you in your tracks and are positively magical and amazing and awesome!

Monday, July 2, 2012

Day 929: First Day

Hard to believe, but this was my first day being home alone with all four children.

And we all survived.  Mostly, it went well.

We even managed to make it to the gym this morning.  I can't leave (nor do I want to) Darling A until six weeks, but the older kids needed to get out.  So, I dropped Sweet P and Little M off at the child care to play and I took a little walk with Baby B in the stroller and Darling A in the Moby wrap.

It was quite the adventure.  A hot and humid (and thus, sweaty) one.

But Baby B and I had some fun bonding time, uninterrupted by older siblings.  And we had a good time.

Little M and Sweet P seemed to really enjoy themselves as well.

All in all, probably a Joyful Moment for all.  Except maybe Darling A who just got quite sweaty, but took a nice nap in spite of it all.

My real Joyful Moment happened this evening.  We had just wrapped up a nice Family Home Evening about being an instrument in the hands of the Lord--made easier by using the kids violins as a visual.  HH and the older kids headed down to play a bit of the Wii.  Before being able to join them, I sat for a moment with Darling A who had just finished eating and was now fast asleep.  With my finger grasped firmly in her tiny hand.  When I tried to slip it out, so I could join the others downstairs, she only gripped it harder.  I know she was asleep and it was only reflexive, but it still made me feel good.  And needed.

Again, not from today, but another time that she spontaneously grabbed my hand and held on.  I love this reflex!

I love my little Darling A.

Wishing you all Joyful Moments when something so tiny can make you feel so great!

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Day 928: Edits

Darling A and I stayed home from church today to keep her away from germs a bit longer.  We were able to nap a bit at first, but then she wanted to eat.  And eat.  And eat.

So, I multitasked and got a bit more caught up on my photos.  And my blogs.

And getting caught up on anything (even if not completely) is a definite Joyful Moment.  Especially these days when I pretty much just fall further behind each moment as my arms are preoccupied with something (someone) far more important than everything else.

Totally worth it.

I actually haven't edited this one yet.  And it's a week old.  But I like it.

Wishing you all Joyful Moments worth falling behind for!