Thursday, January 23, 2014


Every month it gets more and more difficult to take Lincoln's picture. He just will not stop moving! Here are some outtakes from his ten month "photo shoot."

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Ten months


Wow. What a month. It seems the last month has been the prime time for some physical and mental development, which has brought its own set of challenges.

You are still somewhat attached to Jazzy, but now you get mad if she's in your way. She still tolerates your petting since you're surprisingly gentle with her. It wasn't very clear, but you said "dog" for a while when looking at or for her. It's been a little while since you said it, though. You also say "uh-oh" very clearly. We think we might have heard "ball" once or twice but aren't positive about that one.

You're a good eater most of the time. You have started to show definite preferences for certain foods, rejecting things in favor of your favorites - any carbs or fruit. We have had to start getting a little sneaky to get your veggies in! Pasta is another love, especially if it has marinara sauce; you've enjoyed pesto as well.

The separation anxiety has begun! It was pretty bad right after Christmas break and again the week after since you'd had a four-day weekend with your surgery. One day you actually cried when anyone's mommy or daddy dropped them off and left. Thankfully it didn't last too long at Penny's. We're still working on the church nursery. In conjunction with the separation anxiety is a new found attachment to your blankie (whichever of the Aden & Anais swaddles happens to be out). If you can clutch your blanket, you are less likely to cry when we walk away. You will even pull it out of your crib to hold on to in the mornings. You experienced some awful sleep regression for a few weeks this month. Thankfully we are done with that! We have pushed your bedtime back to 7:15 or 7:30 and you may wake up once but will go right back to sleep until about 6:00.

Your favorite activities include rolling your car and tractor around the room and putting toys into cups or boxes. You will put one of your little animals in a cup and shake it until it falls out, pick it up, and start again. You can put the sheep in its spot in your chunky farm puzzle all by yourself but the cow and horse are a little more tricky.  You're definitely too busy to sit still for story time, but we read to you anyway while you play.

Your first tooth was quickly followed by three more. In usual Lincoln fashion, you did this out of the "normal" order. First was the bottom central left incisor, then the lateral incisor next to that. Third was the right central incisor. For your first upper tooth, the left lateral incisor poked through rather than the central. It's funny to see the unique ways you develop!

The only way you could be more mobile is if you were brave enough to let go and just start walking. If you're put on your back wide awake, you immediately roll to your tummy and push up to sitting, then scoot to where you can pull up. You will pull up on anything (mommy's jeans, the wall, a rocking chair...) and cruise around. We have to be pretty vigilant or you will definitely put yourself in a precarious position.

Only two more months until the big one year! We're so excited to see what you learn this month!

Monday, January 20, 2014

Goodbye, goopy eye!

On January 9, Lincoln had surgery to open his left tear duct. We were understandably nervous about how the procedure would go, but it ended up being just fine.

We weren't sure how he would do with waiting to nurse and eat until after the procedure, but he was just fine. In fact, he was happier in the waiting room than he normally is at home in the mornings.

Unfortunately, they called us back to the pre-op area long before they were actually ready for us, and he got very restless while we spent 45 minutes in the small, curtained cubicle.

The procedure went really well. The doctor put the probe through the duct and it seemed like everything was clear. But, when he tried to flush it, the solution wouldn't go through. That's when he realized that the membrane at the end of Lincoln's tear duct (in his nose) was blocking the drainage. He had to bend the membrane up out of the way, which is not uncommon with this type of procedure.

The most difficult thing for us was seeing him with the IV in his hand and the monitor clipped to his toe. It brought back some not-so-great memories. The hardest part for Lincoln was waking up from the anesthesia. Thankfully he was able to sleep on the way home from Wichita, and once we got home he was back to normal. He had a couple little bloody noses at home, and his eye was a little swollen for a day or so, but other than that you wouldn't have been able to tell anything happened!

The most amazing part? How quickly his eye was normal. I kept telling Brad that weekend, "His eyelashes are dry!" Most people wouldn't notice, but the fact that we no longer have to wipe gunk out of his eye every morning is incredible. We both agree the results were well worth it!

Monday, January 13, 2014

thankful for...

Brad and I both went into the education profession to follow our hearts while we make our living. Hearts for kids... hearts for learning... hearts for books... It's pretty common knowledge that teachers aren't rich. The other benefits, like knowing you make a difference, as cliche as it sounds, more than make up for the money. (And when that's not quite doing it, the Christmas vacation is pretty sweet. ;)

We are by no means rich. We are pretty average.

And I am thankful for enough.

We both work to pay our bills and, to be honest, to have money to enjoy our lifestyle. Our life isn't one of extravagance, but we are comfortable. There are also times we have to fall back on our savings. But, somehow, whatever comes our way financially, we always have enough.

Sometimes that means it's just the right amount at the right time.

Sometimes that means using our savings.

Sometimes that means making sacrifices to build our savings account for the next time.

But it never means choosing between necessities. It doesn't mean wondering where our next meal will come from, deciding to forego medical treatment, or making minimum payments. Those are decisions we do not have to make, and I am incredibly grateful for that.

Sure, I sometimes stress about money. Still, I will always be thankful for enough.

Friday, January 3, 2014

thankful for...

I know that there have most definitely been times in life when Sarah, Hannah, Daniel, and I haven't been able to get along. There were probably really long stretches of life when two or more of us have been at odds.

But these three lovely people were my first friends. Growing up on the farm means you don't have easy access to playmates other than your siblings. Sure, I was just as apt to spend hours alone with my books or my Barbies, but almost any time I was looking for company, there they were.

We spent hours upon hours immersed in our made up games. We would run away from the orphanage, gather cassette tapes to have our own radio station, fill the stock tank with freezing water from the well to "swim" in the summer, mummify babysitters, build forts out of hay bales in the loft.

I don't think I could convince them to join me in running away from the orphanage these days, but they are still some of the most important people in my life. They are always willing to answer my questions, listen to my Lincoln stories, hang out with all of us, take on "Lincoln duty," and just talk about life (even though I'm a terrible communicator).

For these and many other reasons, I'm so very, very thankful for my sisters and brother. 


It's become a trend (I don't know where or when or how it started) among some to choose "One Little Word" to focus on during a year. The concept explained a little better here.

I've toyed with the idea in past years, but I could never come up with a word that felt right. This year I decided to take the plunge and choose one.

2014 comes with a long to-do list, lofty goals, and many new adventures. I don't want to lose sight of how good I have it around here, so my word is  gratitude.

There are a lot of obvious reasons I chose it, and it's probably not a shocking choice. I posted just over a month ago about my intentions to be more intentionally grateful.

Here goes.