Friday, February 25, 2011



Jesus' priorities according to Levi: "Sophia, Jesus loves dinner! (long pause) And, he loves me. And, he loves you too, Sophia."
 It's things like this that keep me from duct taping him to the ceiling fan some days. ;)

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Just Because


In 5 days she'll be 6 months old. It's one of those bittersweet milestones. In all honesty the first six months is hard (at least in my experiences), and there's a big piece of me that's glad we're moving beyond it. But, then there's that other piece of me that just wants to hold on tight to my baby who is growing up way to fast. Y'all she weighed in at 17 pounds last week and she was 16 the week before. If she keeps gaining at this rate she's going to have to learn to walk soon.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Sweet Dreams


The kids and I hit the road Friday with my sister and parents. We're back now, and attempting to recover from a 24 hour round trip done in 3 days. It was 100% worth it though....more photos to come. Until then, I couldn't resist posting this shot of Levi cuddled up to his Aunt Annie.  She might hate me now, but really? Is that not just the sweetest?

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

A Taste Of Spring

This winter has seemed like a particularly cold and dreary one, so we've been grateful for the break the past few days brought. The weather has been gorgeous and so very spring like. The best part is that it's supposed to stay that way all week! We're taking full advantage...





Can you believe how big Sophia is getting?!! Even if I had twenty kids I think I'd never cease to be amazed at how quickly they grow. And Levi...the boy is turning into quite the adventurer. I think he might be more glad than any of us for all of this outdoor time.

Hope y'all had a love filled Valentine's day. I know we did (even if there are no pictures to prove it...all of these were taken the day before and after). :)

Sunday, February 13, 2011

One Year Down...


60+ wonderful years to go.

We have certainly had an adventurous start to things. Moving, renovating, having a baby (at home!)...quite a special year...although, I could totally do without the renovating ever again.
Stephan, I'm so glad I married you. I can't imagine a better fella to spend my life with. I love you. :)
Happy Anniversary!

P.S. To those of you curious about Sophia, she's doing really well now. The staph on her lip is completely gone, and the rest of it is beginning to heal very nicely. So far, the only side effect from the antibiotic is a mild diaper rash (praying it stays that way). We've been doing a few new things to counteract the winter dryness, and even her eczema is starting to get better. Yay!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

An Update On Our Little Ray-O-Sunshine

Playing Peek-a-boo.

I remember a time when I actually liked winter. The cold, crisp air, the leafless trees silhouetted against the sky, the possibility of snow...not too long ago these were things to be looked forward to. Now? Winter, I am so over you.  Please leave.

It's beginning to sink in that Sophia's eczema is probably most affected by that cold, crisp air...something entirely out of my control.  Not to mention, the staph that has infected her eczema could use a dose of sunshine. Sunshine is good for bacteria...or should I say bad for it?

Anyway, her doctor called in a prescription for an oral antibiotic. Just writing this has me cringing. The antibiotic ointment that was last prescribed only partially worked. It did at least slow down the infection, and it made things look MUCH better. However, the staph is still spreading. This morning it was setting up shop on her neck, and as of this afternoon it made it to her lips. If it gets inside of her body it will become a much harder to kill beast. Ugh. I'm trying not to worry.


And, thanks so much to everyone who left comments, emails, and Facebook messages full of ideas for helping Sophia's eczema.  We've now got an entire arsenal of stuff to try once we get this infection licked. Hopefully, the gal will soon be itch free. :)

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Poor Girl

Excuse the crazy photo. Stephan took it on his phone with almost no light...and then I played with it...probably too much.

Poor Sophia has had a rough go of things lately. Since she was three months old she has had a rotten case of eczema. We've tried to get to the bottom of the cause, but as the list gets shorter and shorter we are beginning to think it might just be the dry winter weather.  Now if only we could do something about that...besides move. As winter has worn on, the rashes have gotten larger and itchier. Sophia is coordinated enough to rub and scratch which has led to lots of sores. Despite my best efforts at keeping those sores clean and to a minimum, a staph infection set in.* Yesterday, I noticed a rash on her arm that didn't look like the eczema I've become familiar with. Over the course of the morning it turned into a multitude of tiny blisters that began to spread rapidly onto her hand, legs, and some on her face. I called the doctor, but Sophia couldn't be worked in until today. In the meantime we treated the infection with Betadine and Neosporin which at least put an end to the rampant spreading. That stuff was seriously spreading like wildfire. Hopefully, the prescription antibacterial ointment that we got today will put an end to it.  So far the infection is not accompanied by fever or streaking.  I'm praying it stays that way so we can hopefully avoid oral antibiotics.
Sophia has been a trooper through this whole ordeal.  Despite restless nights and severe itching, she is still the smiliest, happiest baby I've ever seen.  She laughs and grins all day, and even when she can't sleep at night, she still grins at us. She's been blessed with an exceptionally positive attitude. I hope she hangs on to that. It's a wonderful gift.
Thankfully, there is a bright spot in all of this. It had me back on the computer researching eczema. In previous searches I had forgotten about the Ask Dr. Sears site. This time I finally remembered. There is a really good, comprehensive list of eczema treatments here. Some are things we had not tried, so we were pleased to find a few more ideas. There is also some solid information on impetigo (the infection that Sophia has) here

*My apologies in advance for what might be the longest footnote ever. I just want to encourage other mamas to go with your gut (and research) when it comes to helping your children to heal. This go round I failed. When Sophia went in for her 4 month well baby appointment, her doctor told us that if the eczema worsened we should use hydrocortisone cream. I was extremely hesitant to use it. But, a few days before the infection set in, I went against my better judgment and put it on her legs and arms in an effort to alleviate her pain, so she could sleep. I also didn't do any research on hydrocortisone before putting it on her.  What I didn't know might very well be what caused her problems. Hydrocortisone is a steroid which works by suppressing the immune system. I can't help but think that this is what allowed the staph infection to set up shop. I know that eczema is prone to infection, but the fact that it came on the heels of hydrocortisone use and was the very worst in the places that I applied it to (the arms and legs) makes me very suspicious. Anyway, this is not intended to be a rant on hydrocortisone.  I know many people have a lot of success with it when their children have eczema flare ups. I just think it's best to stick with your instincts, and when you need a little extra confidence in those instincts do a little research to back them up. You might just find that you have reason to hesitate.

So, have any of y'all had any eczema struggles?  If so, what did you find most effective.

Monday, February 7, 2011

A Little More January

Last month our stove bit the dust. The old one drove me nuts, so I wasn't exactly disappointed over the prospect of a new one.  Unfortunately, though, it took a little bit longer than expected to get the new one up and running. Ain't that just how it goes?


So, while our kitchen looked like that (see above), the kids and I spent a little quality time with Nanno and Baw-Baw. I have it from a good source that grandparents never mind this sort of interruption. :)

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Do note the concentration involved in bucket carrying...


I wasn't joking when I said he was like a border collie.  The kid loves to "work"...


What are your kid's favorite jobs? 

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Weekend Loves


Some favorites of late...

: : These adorable diy wall hooks.

: :  The video at the bottom of this post.

: :  Levi's current favorite.

: :  These pillows...I might just have to figure out how to make them.

: :  This redo.

: : This post.

: : Sweet Valentines...this, this, and this.

Happy Sunday!  Enjoy!

Thursday, February 3, 2011


I've set my own personal record for least blog posts published in a month.  January was home to a whopping five.  Also, my camera has been collecting dust lately, and the few pictures that I have are still in it.  And, it's at my parents' house.  Whoops.  Hmmm....does a month really happen if it's so poorly documented? Kidding.

For Stephan (who misses my posts :)) and the grandparents (who would probably like updates on their grandbabies)....these pictures were all I could scrounge up...




Some random January factoids:

: :  A house under constant renovation = Chaos. Chaos in my house = Chaos in my head. I spent January trying to tame that beast.  It's spilling over into February.

: : Levi, Levi, Levi. We've had some rough times lately.  But, after numerous discussions about what could be causing Levi's worsening behavior (and some sweet help from a friend), Stephan and I had one of those "duh" moments.  Turns out that it was the crud we were letting the poor kid eat because I was too tired (and...cringe...maybe too lazy) to be vigilant about what was going into his body.  The removal of artificial and over-processed junk has yielded a much more reasonable kid.  And, a less tired mama...funny how that works.

: : Also, it turns out that Levi is very similar to a border collie.  If you've ever had one, you know that they require a job otherwise they'll tear up your house.  Levi is the same way, so I've been giving him LOTS of jobs lately.  He's thrilled.  I'm thrilled.  And, the laundry is getting washed at an astonishing rate. Now, if he could just get coordinated enough to fold it. :)

: : I spent most of last month fretting over Sophia's eczema.  It is from the depths of Hades.  I tell you.  We would wake up to what looked like mini crime scenes each morning because she would rub and scratch her face until it bled...nearly every night.  We tried all manner of creams, lotions, and oils with very little improvement. Thanks to the advice of friends, I'm now on a lactose free diet.  (Sort of...I might have forgotten and put butter on some things.)  I'm hesitant to say anything for fear of jinxing the poor gal, but things are beginning to clear up.  We'll see.

: : The brightest spot in January--Stephan now has a week off every month!  I cannot tell you how beside myself excited I am.  For the whole of last year his months went like this: 80 hour week, 30 hour week, 80 hour week, 30 hour week. It was trying, to say the least.  But, now one of those 30 hour weeks has been ditched.  During his first week off he painted the dining remember the one with peeling wall paper?  Sigh. It's lovely.  Maybe this house will get finished soon, and we can spend one of those weeks actually relaxing.  What a change that would be!

Random February factoid:

: : Sophia is 5 months old. She's nearly halfway to a whole trip around the sun! Her personality is shining through more and more each day. I do believe the girl's gonna be a pistol....a bright, sunshiny pistol.

So what's been happening in your neck of the woods while I've been away?