Maurah's First Cereal

Maurah ate one whole ounce of cereal today - beautiful!

I realize this may not be that large of an event, especially compared to all that babies learn to do in the first year of their lives. But think - the very act of eating is what kept our baby girl in the hospital for 80 days. 80 days.

And so today, when I offered her cereal for the second time in her life, I actually wondered if she might have difficulty learning to eat solids. But she proved my doubts wrong by opening her mouth, bite after bite and swallowing each taste of rice cereal. I don't remember it going so well for Cole even!!

The only sad part was that Hayden was sleeping, so we don't have pictures or stories of her yet, but I will make sure to post as soon as I do. Until then, here are some to enjoy of Maurah! Dear Lord, thank You so much for bringing us so far. Thank You that Maurah is healthy and is progressing along as she should. Thank You for your unfailing love and faithfulness and for protecting our family.

New Tricks and Pics

Here's an update on the girls:

  • Maurah and Hayden both rolled from their tummies to their backs last Wednesday.
  • Hayden rolled from her back to her tummy yesterday.
  • Maurah rolled from her back to her tummy today.
  • As far as we can tell right now, Maurah may definitely be Dad's girl. All Jake has to do is walk in the room and her face lights up like you wouldn't believe. I've never seen such a big smile on such a small baby. It's too sweet!
  • Hayden is really into talking. She will just lay in her crib and babble for the longest time. It's so nice to wake up to this sound over the monitor versus screaming that she wants to eat!
  • Both of the girls are really getting interested in toys and it's so fun to have them be more interactive. Jake and I don't really enjoy the newborn stage where babies don't really "do" anything, so we're really loving this phase with the girls.
  • The girls LOVE each other. It's neat to see them bond already. Whenever we lay them down together, they end up holding hands. Could anything be sweeter?
Maurah enjoying some time outdoors
Hayden and her favorite toy - her tongue
Maurah & Hayden

Catching up a bit

So, here's the latest.

Many of you saw on my Facebook profile that we were thinking we'd have to find a new house to live in. The reason for that is this:and this:

and this!Indiana definitely got its fair share of rain two weekends ago. The first picture I took is a field that leads up to a beautiful Catholic church. As Jake and I drove home from our church on Sunday, we found the field to be completely covered in water, looking like a lake. The second picture is one that shows how high the water was up on our van - to the doors to be exact. And this last picture shows how the lake we live on rose so much, many docks were covered in water. I have never seen so much water in my life. It took Jake and I an hour to get home from church and, finally, after attempting three different routes that were blocked by police officers, we found a road that led home - - - - to a home with no power, that is! We quickly packed overnight necessities and headed to our friends', the Evers', who gave us great shelter from the storm for the night. We were warm and cozy and it was wonderful! Cole made cookies with MacKenzie, and Shelley and I stayed up way too late watching a ridiculous movie that was supposed to be scary, but in the end was pretty hysterical. Our power was on and we were able to return home the next morning, but were so glad to have the time spent with friends.

In the town of Munster, where we lived just last year, a family in our church is still recovering from the flood where their entire basement was filled with water and it was coming up onto the main floor of their home. Just down the street from them, a house exploded. Roads were closed, schools closed, we saw a semi split in half from a tree falling on it - - - it was crazy.

SO! From all of this, we got a bit of flooding in our basement and discovered spores of mold that came through our drywall. We knew we couldn't stay in an environment that invited mold, especially with the kids and were planning to have to move out. But Landlord Ron (the most wonderful landlord ever!) saved the day. He and another guy (I forget his name so we'll call him Gut-out guy because he gutted out our house!) came and took our drywall out where mold had collected. They will come back at the end of the week to put up a charrail and some white paneling at the bottom so that we can pull it out easily if it begins to collect water. I am so glad that mold didn't grow in our wood because we would be done for then! I can't tell you what a relief it is to not have to move!!

In all of this, please keep in mind people who were not as fortunate as we have been. Many people's homes have been destroyed. With the economy in the state that it is, it's not an easy task for families to restore their homes to a livable status. We often think of flood victims on coasts - I know I was shocked to see Indiana get the weather it did. But we definitely have flood victims all around us right now and people are still recovering. Prayers are greatly appreciated!!

It's Snot Funny....

I am at home with the kids today, all four of us with stuffy noses, warm heads and bad attitudes. Everything is green - - - I wipe green noses, change green diapers and try to ward off the green-eyed monster that lies within. It's hard on days like these to not be envious of Jake, who is downtown Chicago with three students, hanging out at Moody and visiting the city for the day. When I signed up to be a stay-at-home mom, I didn't realize what I was choosing to miss out on! Then again, if I wasn't with the kids all day, I'd miss out on even more, wouldn't I? I have to try and keep that perspective on days like today.

So, how do you explain to a 2 year-old that we're all tired, and we're all sick, but that gives none of us license to throw fits and be off the charts rude? Or, does anyone have suggestions for how to entertain a sick toddler who isn't really interested in being engaged with anyone or anything (besides the obvious answer of TV and movies!)? By the time I get any responses, we'll all be back to healthy and normalcy again, but we'll just save them for next time

Hope your day is a little less green (in more ways than one!) than mine.

The Latest Cole-isms

We are in the midst of watching Cole's language progress greatly. Here are a few recent stories that might be fun for you to read:
  • Last night while Jake and I were checking to see if Cole might have a rash as it became apparent that his diaper was bothering him, he said, "Hey, don't touch my penix!! Dat tickows!!" Jake and I burst out laughing, not even trying to hold it in. I was proud of him for saying the correct name because I can't stand when people teach their kids little pet names for their anatomy. It was still so funny to hear it come from his mouth so unexpectedly - - - - and as long as he doesn't yell it in public, I think we'll be okay.

  • The other day Jake was talking to Cole and was trying to joke with him. Cole looked at him and said, "That was kind of funny, Dad!" Apparently his standard of funny has raised and Jake doesn't quite meet that expectation anymore. Good thing he's got a hilarious momma!! (Right, Aunt Heather?) =)

  • While Cole is pretty hysterical, he can be awfully sweet too. This morning he was sitting on the couch next to Hayden and I heard him "teaching" her by saying, "See? You have toes, I have toes! You have legs, I have legs! You have hands, I have hands!" It's fun to see him turn more and more into the big brother who is also a teacher, a comforter and a friend. Sometimes a bully too, but thankfully the girls haven't picked up on that yet!

Now, get your kleenex ready.

A week or two ago, Cole was looking at the pictures I have setting on the ledge that follows the stairs down to our basement. I was in our living room when he came running in with a frame in his hands.

"Who's dis wif Gramma Jammet?" I replied, "That's Grandpa Mart. You didn't get to meet him."

"Weww.....Cole wansa' see him!" I said, "You know what honey? You will get to see him someday because he's in Heaven with Jesus now. He went to Heaven just two weeks before you were born, so you didn't get to see him yet. But you can one day."

"No, Mom, he's at Gramma Jammet's house! I wansa' go to Gramma Jammet's house!" Then I realized that he recognized my Grandpa from pictures in my Grandma's apartment. We resolved the issue of him wanting to go to my Grandma's house because that's what we're doing next weekend.

This struck me so deeply though because this was my first conversation with Cole about someone we know and love very much being in Heaven. Isn't it amazing the things children can understand? He walked away from that conversation happy to know that Grandpa Mart is in Heaven and especially that we're going to "Gramma Jammet's" soon. I left that conversation with a sadness that my grandpa never did get to meet Cole and also filled with the wonder of whether or not our loved ones really can see us from above. Sometimes I highly doubt this. But if so, I think I can see the smile my Grandpa had on his face as he watched our conversation.

Blue Jean Ladies

Maurah, Hayden

Thought these were just too cute to not post! They're getting so big and are so close to rolling over. Bundles of fun!!

A New Spark

June also brought with it a somewhat new adventure for Maurah.  She joined MainStage Academy of Dance in the winter and showcased her work t...