Monday, December 31, 2007

Finding Chapstick




Lately our little man Nate has gotten pretty chapped lips from sucking/chewing on them. So Isaac and I thought maybe if we got chapstick w/ a familiar character on it that he would be more inclined to use it periodically. Finding Nemo chapstick then became a part of our bedtime routine: put on pj's, sit on potty, brush teeth, put on Nemo chapstick, read book, pray, lights out. So far so good - it seems to be helping. I say all this about the chapstick in order that you be able to understand the following cute story (at least I think its cute).
This morning at breakfast I was asking Nate about the family get together we had at my parents' house yesterday. "Did you have fun, Who did you play with," etc. I then asked him what movie he watched. His answer was kind of excited and fast so I didn't catch what he said right away so I asked again and he said "Nemo Chapsick". I kind of giggled to myself as I realized why he answered that way. Nate then seemed to realize that what he had said wasn't right and he said "Finding Chapstick".... then he finally said "Finding Nemo" and seemed rather proud of himself for fixing the statement on his own. Obviously the whole thing was adorable but it was so neat to watch his thought process as he figured it out all by himself. He is getting sooo smart! My little boy is not so little anymore! sniff....

Saturday, December 29, 2007

Personality Quiz Results.... Nurturer, who me?!?


Publish Posttr>


You Are An ISFJ



The Nurturer



You have a strong need to belong, and you very loyal.

A good listener, you excel at helping others in practical ways.

In your spare time, you enjoy engaging your senses through art, cooking, and music.

You find it easy to be devoted to one person, who you do special things for.



In love, you express your emotions through actions.

Taking care of someone is how you love them. And you do it well!



At work, you do well in a structured environment. You complete tasks well and on time.

You would make a good interior designer, chef, or child psychologist.



How you see yourself: Competent, dependable, and detail oriented



When other people don't get you, they see you as: Boring, dominant, and stuck in a rut

Friday, December 28, 2007

Sickies

I don't know about other moms but when your kids are sick and whining you feel a certain satisfaction and frustration that you are so needed. Actually in the past week or two all of us have been sick at one time or another and its just wearing me out! I just want us all to be healthy again! Is that too much to ask?!?

Sitcom Withdrawl!

So I get a little obsessed/addicted, whatever you want to call it when it comes to a few tv shows. Due to the WGA writers strike (which I do support) all my favorites are on hiatus indefinitely. sigh.... Reruns just aren't the same. I miss the ongoing saga of Heroes and their quest to understand their powers and (of course) to save the world. I miss seeing Jim and Pam on the Office and their developing relationship and the awkward humor that Rainn Wilson and Steve Carell bring to that show. Here are a couple of videos that help ease the withdrawl symptoms that I've been experiencing. Maybe they'll help you too.

Check out this video: Jim and Pam - A Love Story



Add to My Profile | More Videos


Check out this video: Tribute to NBCs Heroes - If Everyone Cared



Add to My Profile | More Videos

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Thirteen Ornaments On Our Tree

1. Strawberry Shortcake
2. Classic Winnie the Pooh w/ pix of Pooh and Piglet and says "We'll be friends forever, won't we Pooh? asked Piglet. Even longer. answered Pooh."
3. Care Bear's Baby's First Christmas
4. lovely crystal and gold butterfly
5. trolley car from San Francisco
6. Indianapolis Colts bulb
7. Homer Simpson drinking syrup from a jug
8. chinese takeout box w/ fortune cookie that says "What good fortune to have each other."
9. s'more snowman
10. Lightning McQueen from "Cars"
11. Hershey's Kiss
12. one with the Monopoly guy on it
13. German pickle from Pier One

Cool Gift Tags!


I found these gift tags on a crafting blog. They're ok to print and use if anyone is interested. I wish I'd seen them before Christmas, I'd totally have used them on a few of the gifts I gave! Maybe I'll use them for my family's Christmas this weekend!

Who Loves Their Christmas Gifts? I Do!

Merry Christmas! We have really enjoyed the time with friends and family in spite the boys being sick. I got a couple of gifts that I'm really excited about! From my inlaws I got some cool scrap/crafting tools, the book "Bend the Rules Sewing", and a sewing machine to go with it! I'm excited to get to start some new projects! Isaac got me some pretty jewelry, a book on how to grow my photography business, a scarf & hat & gloves set and the book P.S. I Love You. I am reading it now before I go see the movie - which by the way is the perfect way to do it. I've already seen previews so I know which actors are playing which characters, etc so I get a proper mental picture of everyone. If I read the book before I saw previews then I'd form my own ideas of what the characters should look like, etc and then I'd be frustrated when I saw the movie and everyone was different than what I'd pictured them. I know, I'm weird. I've started the book already and its pretty good. The only thing is the book is written by an Irish or English woman and the verbiage is kind of hard to get used to at time. Everything is "bloody" or stuff like that, you know what I mean. Oh, well.... we haven't yet had Christmas with my family since most of them are out in New Mexico still. I miss them. tear, sniff....

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

New Blog

Since this blog has evolved through recent posts I created a new blog just for pix and info on my kids. We'll see how I do trying to upkeep three blogs and my myspace and facebook pages.

Confessions of a mom who does not know it all.

Resources and information are a good thing.... sometimes. I will admit that I can sometimes be easily influenced by a good argument. Sometimes I read things (in books or online, whatever) that are helpful and encouraging and I am built up, strengthened in my parenting skills, etc. And then other times I just feel like I'm such a loser of a mom and no matter what "method" you look at I'm doing everything wrong. I mean, I must be doing something wrong because I'm not doing anything just like anyone else.... right? I think my parenting is kind of like my mom's curriculum while she home-schooled us: kind of mix-n-match, a little bit of this method, some of this curriculum, a bit of that guy's ideas, some of so-and-so's instructions. Kind of a hodge-podge collection of the best of everything - right?
So here are some of the things that I do - I don't know if they are all the "right" ways of doing things but they're what I do: I am a somewhat scheduled mom (I'm flexible, but I like to have structure too is that so bad?), I would like to co-sleep but don't because of my husband's sleep disorder (better safe than sorry), I am serious about breastfeeding (the first one I nursed until I got pregnant with the second - about 15mos - and the second one is 9mos old and hasn't started solids yet), I do not promote belief in Santa Claus - I don't think other parents are awful for doing it - I just don't see any benefit in it, I do spank (gasp!) but try to use more creative alternate forms of discipline/correction as much as possible, I love to play and read to my two year old but gosh darnit sometimes I can only read the same board book so many times before I want to tear the pages out, I don't medicate my children over every little sniffle, I do sometimes get offended when given unsolicited advice, I do use the tv as a babysitter sometimes (I'm sorry, but I am only human), I was really really scared (and still am a little) when my son had his seizures, I plan to home-school but I'm not committing to a how long - we'll play it by ear, I know I'm not supposed to but I do sometimes compare my kids - I can't help it, some days I pawn off bedtime on my husband because I'm tired and frustrated by the end of the day, I spend naptime (the short quiet time of the day) blogging and other stuff instead of cleaning house because I need this outlet to keep my sanity, I worry about things out of my control, and even though I don't think this about other moms (really) I sometimes feel like I'm under the microscope and every thing that my kids do "wrong" or whatever is blamed on me.
Sometimes there is a battle of wills going on in my mind. There is a big part of me that believes that I am doing things well and while my kids aren't perfect they're good boys and they know that they're loved and that is more important than if mommy used "attachment parenting" or the Ferber Method. Then the other part (my mind's evil twin or something) is taunting me saying that no matter what I do they're going to grow up and blame all their problems on me - I'm the mom - it is always my fault, right?
Then I have to take a deep breath and pray and remind myself yet again that while I'm doing everything I can to be the best wife and mom (the two go hand in hand you know) ultimately God is in control and whether they're nursed til they're 6weeks old or 6years old, whether I cry tears of frustration because my two year old ate crayons for what seems like the hundredth time, whether I meet my own expectations or not.... God will guide my children to be the adults that He wants them to be. Thank you, God.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Funky Christmas Cards


Ok, so I'm not the best or most creative card maker but I thought these were cool and unconventional for Christmas cards. I embraced using non-Christmasy colors more than I thought I would. The biggest reason I went with these colors/styles was the cards were $1 for a box of 8 cards and envelopes at the Target dollar section. I love a great deal!

Christmas Questions

I stole this from another blog... oh well...

1. Wrapping paper or gift bags?
a little of both - I hate dealing with odd shaped packages so I use bags for those... anything thats in a box I'll use paper.... a quick fact about me.... I got reserved grand champion in gift wrapping in the 4-H fair back in the day.... I was in the paper and everything... aren't I cool? Or is that dorky and I shouldn't tell anyone that?

2. Tree - Real or Artificial? Fake.... the first year we were married we got a real one and were so excited until we had to deal with all the needles and decided fake was the way to go.

3. When do you put the Christmas tree up? Usually at the beginning of December sometime..... but this year I've been dragging my feet. I am not looking forward to keeping my two year old out of the tree and gifts, etc. Its so much work!

4. When do you take the tree down? Around New Years... give or take a week.

5. Like Egg Nog? Not so much. I'm more of a hot chocolate girl myself.

6. Do you have a nativity scene? A couple of them but I don't like the ones I have.... I would really like to get the Willow Creek one.... but its pretty expensive.

7. Favorite gift received as a child?
The one that stands out the most was my first real good camera. My family doesn't over-do Christmas but the Christmas nearest our 16th birthdays was always a big deal and my parents got me a 35mm SLR with a couple of lenses.... I was so psyched. I went out and took pix of the fresh snow we'd gotten... those pix got blue ribbons at the 4-H fair.... ok.... revealing my dorkiness once again.

8. Hardest person to buy for? My husband's family. If they want something they buy it for themselves.... that doesn't leave much for us to get them. Plus, my husband is no help whatsoever.... all the gift ideas and buying are left up to me.

9. Easiest person to buy for? Varies from year to year.

10. Worst Christmas gift? I keep no record of wrongs.... I mean bad gifts.

11. Mail or email a Christmas Card? Snail mail of course. I did a combination of photo cards and handmade cards. I just didn't have time or energy enough to make 50 handmade cards.

12. Favorite Christmas movie? well.... I like alot. Even though my family never did the santa thing and we aren't doing it with our boys I really like Miracle on 34th Street, While You Were Sleeping (thats kinda a Christmas movie), Elf, Holiday Inn.... and per my husband's insistence that he can't get into the holiday spirit without it - National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation.

13. When do you start shopping for Christmas? I start late summer, early fall. I like to spread it out so its not a huge financial burden in December.

14. Have you ever recycled a Christmas present? maybe....

15. Favorite food to eat on Christmas? Grandma's cookies!

16. Clear or colored tree lights? colored

17. Favorite Christmas Song? Silent Night - and Holly Jolly Christmas

18. Travel during Christmas or stay home? Stay home as much as possible. I'd love to just stay in and make everyone come to us but we've got too many church and family commitments.

19. Can you name Santa’s reindeer’s? yes

20. Angel or Star on tree top? I prefer a star.

21. Open presents on Christmas Eve or morning? Christmas eve at grandma's and Christmas Day at home and my inlaws.

22. Most annoying thing about this time of year? Too many people out shopping.... I went to Walmart the other day and it took forever just to get a few groceries. Its ridiculous.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

My Yahoo Avatar

Yahoo! Avatars

So this is basically the best cartoon version of me that I could create - give or take. Which clearly gives away the fact that I don't always make the best use of my time.

Saturday, December 08, 2007

Professionalizing Motherhood

Ok, so a couple of weeks ago I heard Jill Savage speak and she was so genuine and real in her knowledge and experience and it encouraged me to read one of her books. It is "Professionalizing Motherhood - Encouraging, Educating and Equipping Mothers at Home". She is the mother of five (one adopted) - she had teenagers and toddlers at the same time! She is founder and director of Hearts at Home - a ministry for mothers. There are is a quote from the book that I'd like to share: "The profession of motherhood has one primary goal: to see a child grow into a mature, godly, respectful and loving adult.... We may be pursuing a result that we will only see decades from now, but lets not lose sight, over time, of our extremely important goal. Motherhood is a vitally important and worthy profession to commit ourselves to." How true! And how hard to remember sometimes! There are some days when I feel like everything I do gets undone, or ignored, or defied. But long term the little things that I do every day - reading my son books that seem mindless to me, especially when I have to read the same ones over and over again, those books are enriching and the time spent together is building our relationship and creating a bond that will last, when I reprimand him for poor behavior and he defies me now, someday he will be able to make the right choices in life because I have instilled values and taught him right from wrong, even though I have to fight to get him to eat his vegetables now, someday he will have healthy eating habits.... and though now he has to be walked step by step through his prayers someday he will pray on his own because his faith will be his own. This is my prayer, this is my hope, that the things I do day after day that seem sometimes to be insignificant now will someday result in a grown man that loves God, loves his family, is responsible, kind, generous, funny, and mature.

If anyone is interested you can find out more about Jill Savage and Hearts at Home at the following websites:

www.jillsavage.org

www.hearts-at-home.org

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

A Little About Going Potty - New Tooth - And Weight

We’ve started trying to use candy as incentive for Nate to go on the potty. Monday he went four times and today he went twice since naptime. He’s excited about wearing “Cars” pull-ups – I wouldn’t let him wear them until he’d gone potty.

Josiah’s first tooth came in today! I knew it was coming and my nipples hurt just thinking about it! We still haven’t introduced Josiah to solid foods because with Nate as soon as we did my period came back so I’m kind of glad to postpone that for a bit longer.

I hope it didn’t sound awful in the last post when I said I looked good in the pix. Its just that my weight has fluctuated a lot over the past few years and its kind of nice to be able to shop in normal sizes again – not plus or maternity or plus-maternity - and feel pretty good about the way I look (most of the time). My body certainly has changed a lot both before and after both pregnancies. I gained a lot of weight our first year or so of marriage (I blame it in part to the pill and my sedentary job at the airline call center). I lost a little bit of weight before I got pregnant with Nate. I was huge (seriously) when I gave birth to Nate. Thanks to breastfeeding the weight came off after that and I lost quite a bit before I got pregnant with Josiah. Again I lost the baby weight pretty well, I’m just a few pounds away from my pre-Joe weight. I’ve still got awhile to go before I’m at my ideal weight but I’m almost to the weight I was when we got married which feels pretty good.

Monday, December 03, 2007

Family Time




We had dinner at my parents' the other night - the whole gang. It was a huge spread - my mom outdid herself. Roast pork, leg o' lamb, mashed potatoes, cooked carrots, mandarin orange salad, clam chowder.... trust me, we did not eat like this when I was growing up! We had a nice time visiting and took a family picture afterward for mom to use in the Christmas cards. Of course Josiah was happy all evening except when we were trying to take the group picture. Oh, well.... I look good, thats all that matters.... ha!
I'm kind of bummed most of my family will be out of town for Christmas.... their taking a road trip to the Grand Canyon and coming back through Albuquerque to see my grand parents. I'd love to go but I think that would be too much time in the car for my two boys. I wish traveling wasn't so expensive... I love to travel, see new places, etc.... but we just don't do it anymore. These are the times that I miss working for the airlines! The travel benefits were so great! I'm trying to talk Isaac into saving up and taking a really great trip someday. Like touring Europe or a cruise or something. Isaac really hates how much traveling costs.... I'm not sure he'll ever be able to justify it like I can. We'll have to wait and see if it'll ever happen.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Holiday Quiz




What The Holidays Mean to You



For you, the holidays are about emotional connections and bonds. You are happiest being around those you love.



You celebrate the holidays in a minimalist style. You are likely to only give one great present and decorate your house with a few special items.



During the holidays, you feel magical. You love all of the decorations and how happy people are. You like to sit back and take it all in.



You think the holidays should be nostalgic and sweet. The holidays bring out your inner child.



Your best holiday memories are of childhood foods and traditions. You secretly still wish you believed in Santa Claus.

What Do the Holidays Mean to You?

This is pretty right on - except for the bit about Santa Claus.... my parents never did the "santa" thing and we aren't doing it with our boys either. Christmas is a time to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ our Savior... while we participate in exchanging gifts with loved ones and other typical holiday traditions Santa is not a part of it for us.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Happy Thanksgiving

What comes to mind when someone asks you what you're thankful for? Is it relationships? Is it material things? My wonderful husband's automatic response to that question was "salvation". He is so good at alot of things. I am so thankful that Isaac is a good spiritual head of our household. As he will be the first to admit, he isn't perfect. But he takes his role as husband and father seriously (but not too serious). My first response on the other hand was mended relationships (can you tell I'm forever the peacemaker?). Both sides of our family have had their rocky points over the past few years and I'm so thankful to be at a place when everyone is getting along and there isn't too much unnecessary drama going on. God has really blessed Isaac and I - we are both from families that have solid marriages, we have families who love us and support us different ways, we have two beautiful sons who are healthy.... and of course we love eachother very much in spite of the challenges that we face in our life and relationship.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

I'm a 1980 Baby




In 1980 (the year you were born)



Jimmy Carter is president of the US



President Carter announces punitive measures and embargos against the USSR in retaliation for the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan



Mount St. Helens in Washington state erupts in a violent blast estimated to be 500 times as powerful as the Hiroshima atomic bomb



Ronald Reagan is elected the 40th US president in a sweeping victory



US Representative Michael O. Myers is expelled from the House for his role in the Abscam scandal



Hewlett-Packard announces release of its first personal computer



Microsoft announces their version of UNIX, Xenix



Christina Ricci, Chelsea Clinton, Venus Williams, Jessica Simpson, Macaulay Culkin, and Jake Gyllenhaal are born



Philadelphia Phllies win the World Series



Pittsburgh Steelers win Superbowl XIV



New York Islanders win the Stanley Cup



The Empire Strikes Back is the top grossing film



"Lady" by Kenny Rogers spends the most time at the top of the US charts



U.S. viewers get caught up in the "Who Shot J.R.?" cliff hanger on the soap opera series, Dallas, which is solved on a November 21 episode, drawing a record numbers of viewers

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Growing Boys

Its been two weeks since Nate got his cast off. He didn’t like the saw they used to cut the cast but other than that he was really good for the whole thing. While he had the cast he had gone from using his left hand for most things to using his right hand but he’s slowing transitioning back to being left hand dominant. He hasn’t sucked his thumb since he got the cast and we were afraid that he might go back after the cast came off but so far we haven’t noticed any “relapses”. We’re relieved that we didn’t have to wean him of the habit on our own. Nate has been talking soo much! He's putting together sentences and communicating so well.... most of the time. He calls Lauren "baby cakes" and is repeating everything (not always a good thing!). Everything thats little is "baby" and everything that is big is "daddy". So if he eats a tiny grape he says its a "baby grape" or he is playing with his cars and the big one is the "daddy car". Its so funny.... I'm glad all the "big" things aren't "mommy" if you know what I mean! ;) Nate's been very challenging lately. Sometimes I think its an attention thing, sometimes I think its an age thing, sometimes I think its all a test and I'm not sure if I'm doing well or just barely passing.
Josiah is so strong (and sometimes a little lazy). He isn't doing quite as much as Nate was at this age but I'm trying really hard not to compare. He is getting close to sitting. He can roll over from back to belly and sometimes belly to back but still struggles with that one a little. He loves to try to stand though. He can be really quiet sometimes and others he babbles up a storm. What a joy he is!

Friday, November 02, 2007

Sisters


So... I'm the oldest of five kids (4 girls and 1 boy). Our relationships obviously have grown and changed alot over the years - especially now that most of us are grown and the last two aren't far behind. I love my siblings. Its been really neat seeing us grow from just being sisters to becoming friends. Its kind of funny because I have friends that I consider my sisters both because of how close we are and because of our shared faith in Christ, but I also have sisters that I consider my friends. I'm 27, Shannon is 24, Lauren 21 and Hannah 16. Pretty far spread by today's standards, but its what we knew so to us it was normal. We're all very different in personality and temperament. Our relationships have fluctuated - hills and valleys - sometimes we're closer than others, sometimes we like eachother more than others. But right now we're all in a pretty good place. I'm really enjoying spending time with each of them in different ways. While there have been many challenges in my life through them there have also been many blessings and I love my sisters.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

I'm a Dumb Online Quiz Addict

So, you know those online quiz things that are kind of stupid and don't really mean anything.... I really get a kick out of them. Some of them are dumber than others but sometimes they're kind of interesting. Sometimes during naptime (when I should be trying to be productive) I'll do a half a dozen in a row just for the heck of it. Here are a couple that I've done recently.





Your Famous Movie Kiss is from Spiderman



"I have always been standing in your doorway. Isn't it about time somebody saved your life?"







You Are Likely a First Born



At your darkest moments, you feel guilty.

At work and school, you do best when you're researching.

When you love someone, you tend to agree with them often.



In friendship, you are considerate and compromising.

Your ideal careers are: business, research, counseling, promotion, and speaking.

You will leave your mark on the world with discoveries, new information, and teaching people to dream.







The Keys to Your Heart



You are attracted to those who are unbridled, untrammeled, and free.



In love, you feel the most alive when your lover is creative and never lets you feel bored.



You'd like to your lover to think you are stylish and alluring.



You would be forced to break up with someone who was ruthless, cold-blooded, and sarcastic.



Your ideal relationship is lasting. You want a relationship that looks to the future... one you can grow with.



Your risk of cheating is zero. You care about society and morality. You would never break a commitment.



You think of marriage as something precious. You'll treasure marriage and treat it as sacred.



In this moment, you think of love as commitment. Love only works when both people are totally devoted.

Boys Update


This picture kind of illustrates how my life is going right now... Josiah is pretty peaceful and happy-go-lucky most of the time, but needs to have his needs met regularly. But look at that expression on Nate's face. I don't exactly know what it is - part "cheese" because he does that the instant he sees the camera, part frustration as he tries to pull the toy away from his brother, part "lets see if this will get me attention", part "I'm taking a huge dump for my mommy to clean up because I have very little interest in learning to go in the potty", part "see, I can be cute when I want to".... I could go on and on.

So Nate has had his cast on for about a month now. Having the cast has not slowed him down at all. He is still into everything and still jumping on the couch. I have to force myself to choose my battles or else he and I would be at it all day long. Oh wait, we still are. Nate is at a stage where is can be cuter than cute or he can be a total terrible two – and it only takes a split second to switch from one to the other. He still hasn’t gotten the hang of “gentle” and has come close to hurting Joe a few times. He’s very whiney and every time we tell him “no” about anything it’s a huge ordeal. We’ve been trying all sorts of things and nothing seems to affect him much. I will admit that I have been pushed to my limit a lot lately.
Josiah is getting into a pretty regular sleeping pattern – going to bed between 9-10pm getting up around 8ish (usually woken up by Nate who comes hollering into our room) and taking a few hours of nap in the middle of the day. Obviously there are days when that doesn’t happen but its nice to not be getting up a couple of times a night anymore.
I've got a couple photography gigs this weekend. I'm looking forward to it. I haven't done much photography lately and have missed it. I need to print up some new business cards and do some marketing but somehow haven't found the time or energy to do it.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Brown County

Here is the whole Penrod family on the "annual" fall trip to Brown County State Park. We had a nice day of going to the flea market, grilling at the park and fighting traffic in downtown Nashville. As we tried for half an hour to find parking I was reminded of why I don't usually go to Nashville during the busy season. I'll stick to our trip with the church leadership in January. Even though there aren't quite as many shops open, at least we don't have to fight for parking spots. Oh, well it was a beautiful day and a nice time.

New web address!

So, now you can catch up on everything Wani at www.wanibug.blogspot.com - I'm also on myspace if you want to be my friend I'm at www.myspace.com/wanibug

Also FYI my business is online at www.unforgettable-photography.com - www.unforgettablephotography.blogspot.com - www.myspace.com/unforgettablephoto

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Quiz

***Your Sensitivity Score: 70%***


You are a highly sensitive person. Pretty much everything effects you.
You are tuned into the vibe around you, and someone's bad mood can bring you down.
But you also easily share in someone's joy - whether you know them or not.


Are You Extremely Sensitive?
http://www.blogthings.com/areyouextremelysensitivequiz/

Monday, October 08, 2007

Summer Study

I really miss the small group of girls - women that I was in a bible study with over the summer. We met almost every Monday from Memorial Day thru Labor Day. We were going through a book together(Created to be His Helpmeet by Debi Pearl) and had prayer and sharing time together. Some of the girls I knew already but a couple I didn't. Group sharing has always been hard for me so I volunteered my home for the study so I couldn't back out once I started to feel like I was getting outside of my comfort zone. It was so great to spend that time with other women who know what I'm going through on a daily basis - with marriage and raising toddlers, etc. We all had something in common. We shared similar struggles and joys. I didn't realize how much I had begun to rely on that time of sharing and encouragement until we discontinued meeting. I keep telling myself that someone should arrange a playdate or something to get us together again. I even tell myself that that someone could/should be me. But procrastination and busy-ness continue to win the mental battle going on inside my head. If any of my summer study girls are reading this.... I miss you guys! We should get together! And one of these days maybe I will be the one to arrange something!

Monday, October 01, 2007

Middle Name MeMe

My friend, Judy, just tagged me with a fun middle name meme.

Anyway, here are the rules: (If I tag you, you have to post the rules too!)
-You must list one fact that is somehow relevant to your life for each letter of your middle name. (I added the idea that you can come up with more than one word for each letter.)
-If you don't have a middle name, use the middle name you would have liked to have had.
-At the end of your post, you need to choose one person for each letter of your middle name to
tag...... Got it? Good!

Well, I'm always bad at things that require me to talk about myself - at least I think I am. But I'll give it a shot.

M - Married - Mom - Modest - I'm Married. Happily. We're approaching our five year anniversary (its in January). I love my husband very much and am blessed and challenged by our relationship in so many ways. I'm Mom to two beautiful boys. Being a mom brings me the most joy and the most frustration. There are some times when I just can't get over how cute my boys are and I just want to cuddle and kiss them all over. And then there are times.... well lets just say I wouldn't mind having a vacation or at least a day off or something once in awhile. I'm not sure if I'm truly Modest or if I just don't have enough confidence in myself. I don't usually give myself enough credit even though I have plenty of people in my life who encourage and build me up.

A - Anal - Artistic - I have been told (I'll admit it a little) that I'm Anal. I don't think I'm officially OCD but there are things that I like to have a certain way. Thats normal, right? I like even numbers, symmetry and having things go according to planned. The Artistic thing is kind of stretching things a little. I'm more crafty than artistic - unless you count my photography.

R - Rosey-cheeked - Real - I've always been fairly easy to get to blush. It used to be worse, every little thing would embarrass me when I was growing up. I do think that I'm Real. That was one of the first things that made my husband and I know that we had something special - we were both comfortable being our real selves with each other from the beginning.

I - Interested - Intelligent - Intellectual - Irresistible - I'm Interested in a numbers of things/hobbies. I like my photography, reading both fiction and marriage/parenting books, card making and scrapbooking, I'm a big tv/movie buff. I remember dumb tv/movie trivia. Anytime we watch a movie and I see an actor/actress that I recognize I proceed to bore my companions with a list of every movie that I can think of that the actor/actress has been in. My husband says that I'm Intelligent, Intellectual and Irresistible but I'm not so sure sometimes - see the Modest section.

E - Emotional - Encourager - I'm terribly Emotional. I cry at sad (or happy) movies. I get very emotionally involved in situations that may or may not actually involve me. I have to work at remaining unbiased when friends ask for advice, etc. I try to be an Encourager to my friends. I may not always succeed, but I do try. I love sending cards to my friends (especially out of town friends that I don't get to see much).

Alright.... thats as good as it gets from me. I don't have alot of blogging friends, so I'll tag Cindy and Kevin and I'll probably send this out on myspace because its fun. Thanks to Judy for tagging me.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Accidents Happen

Sunday Isaac went to Louisville to a Phil Keaggy concert and I was having a girls’ night. Nate was supposed to spend the night at the grandparents' but she called around 9pm and he had fallen on (not off) the couch and hurt his arm. We went to Clarian West ER and were taken care of very well. Nate had x-rays and it was clear that he had fractured both bones in his left arm a little above the wrist. They wrapped him up with a fiberglass splint and sling and we were told to follow up with an orthopedic doctor the next day to get a cast that'll be on for a few weeks. By the time we got home from the hospital around 1am he was not acting like the same boy who came in all sad and injured earlier that night. He was back to bouncing off the walls as usual. The next day he hardly complained about pain at all - just about the sling being "stuck" – it was cramping his style. We saw the orthopedic doctor on Tuesday. Isaac went back with Nate to get more xrays and they came back with an xray of Nate’s toy cars which he thought was pretty cool. Then the Dr. Kendall reset the bone (Nate did not like that part!) and put a plaster splint on it - he'll probably get a hard cast later. Nate's been such a trooper. Our appointment was right during naptime so as soon as we got on the road to come home Nate fell fast asleep. All things considered none of this has really slowed him down much; he's still been bouncing all over the place. It is wearing mommy out though! We're very thankful that he didn't need surgery or anything. We'd appreciate prayer that he doesn't re-injure his arm during this critical healing time.

As mothers we want so badly for nothing bad to happen to our kids, right? I think the only thing worse than something happening to our child is having it happen when we're not with them. There was a whole lot of guilt going on Sunday night. Isaac felt guilty because he was in Louisville and couldn't be there until we were being discharged from the hospital. I felt guilty because the reason he wasn't at home with me was because I had been having girls' night (and I was bummed to be missing that girls night). My mom felt bad for leaving Nate with Hannah. Hannah felt bad for leaving Kyle and Nate alone for a few minutes. And Kyle felt bad because he was the one with Nate when it happened. We were all innocent of any actual guilt. Nate is a rambunctious two year old and while having a seemingly normal jump on the couch, he fell just right and hurt his arm. It could have happened while he was under anyone's care. Just last week he fell off a play ground ladder and bounced back within a couple of minutes later without hardly a scratch on him. Who would have thought that he would end up with a broken bone from jumping on the couch (and not falling off of it!)? I saw a book once and the title was "Motherhood, the guilt that keeps on giving" (or something to that effect). Its so true. I know I blame myself for far more things than I'm actually responsible for. But while motherhood is full of responsibility, frustration, anxiety, work, worry... its also full of joy, fulfillment, rewards, love, cuddles, bonding... I say (or maybe I heard it somewhere) marriage and motherhood both are the hardest jobs and the most rewarding. Sometimes its hard to see all the great stuff through all the hard stuff, but it doesn't mean its not there.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Tickles and Giggles

video
Of course daddies are the best at tickling and getting good laughs out of kids. Josiah is a happy and pretty content baby. Occasionally he'll be in the carseat or swing staring off into nothing and chuckle to himself for no apparent reason - which is pretty funny. But usually he doesn't hand out smiles and giggles for free much. Isaac can usually find the right spot and make Joe grin and laugh it up. Here is a clip from one of those times.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

My Little Sunshine

Having a two year old can be at times challenging, frustrating, tiring, I could go on but I'll stop there. But then God is faithful and He gives us times when its pure joy. I think He knows we need those times of respite to be renewed and have reason to not lose heart when we moms feel like just about anyone could do our job(s) as good or better than we are doing them.

Over the past few months Nate has started taking more of an interest in praying with us both at dinner and bedtime. He’ll give suggestions on things to thank God for…. Usually its Cars or Toy Story, etc, but sometimes its Pop, Grandma, etc. Lately after some guidance from Isaac, he has been saying little prayers on his own. He’ll say “Jesus (or sometimes, God or Lord)…. thank you…. For…. Cars. Amen” Its so precious!

Isaac's mom taught Nate the cutest thing! Here is a video of him singing (in a whisper - so you'll have to turn up the volume) "You Are My Sunshine" along with Isaac. I thought it best that Isaac sing it with him and not me. Trust me, you should be thanking me!
video

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Labor Day Weekend



We went to the lake for Labor Day weekend. It got off to a lousy start. We got up there late on Thursday evening and when we put Nate straight to bed he was a little warm but we didn’t really think anything of it. I awoke at 5am to hear Josiah stirring and I was preparing myself to get up to nurse him. I could hear Nate in the other room, he was having a raspy, kind of gurgled breathing and I hurried in to check on him, and found that he was having another febrile seizure. Isaac got up and we held Nate’s hands through the seizure which probably lasted less than a minute. He was burning up. We couldn’t find a thermometer but we gave him some Tylenol. He was very lethargic while recovering from the seizure, but slowly normalized and said he wanted a “nap”. His little body was so tired. We eventually went back to bed but I don’t think I actually went back to sleep. The next day we continued to give him Tylenol at regular intervals but he continued to feel feverish. Throughout the morning he would “start” occasionally, and every time I thought it was another seizure. Around 1:30pm he was sitting on my lap and he did have another one. I laid him on the floor and again we talked him through it. It wasn’t until this time that we had Dane go to the store and got a thermometer. When we took his temp after he recovered it was 104degrees. We called Dr. Bain and he recommended that we take Nate to the ER. Not because of the seizures necessarily, but because of how high his fever was. Dane came with us to the ER in Goshen and he watched Josiah(which was so helpful) so both Isaac and I could be with Nate. He napped off and on throughout the couple of hours that we spent in the hospital. They did a blood test and sent some blood off for a blood culture, but we were all confidant that it was again a fever related issue. The doctor said that Nate must have a low fever threshold. He said probably on top of teething (we can see a couple of teeth about to come in) he might have something viral (he’s had a bit of a cough). He had us continue a Tylenol/Ibprophen regimen for the next 24 hours or so to keep the fever under control. They say that the most significant effect of these seizures is "Parental Anxiety" - and boy are they right! Obviously it was stressful and scary, but we’re thankful for the prayers of our church body and that he is alright and by that same evening he was acting like his normal self again. Thankfully the rest of the weekend was fairly uneventful. We enjoyed the time we got to spend with our family and friends.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Building a Cathedral

I don't usually pass on forwards but every once in awhile I'll get one at just the right moment that I need an encouraging word or pick-me-up. And, wow - this one made me cry. I was going through my list of people that I thought might enjoy this email forward and realized I have so many awesome friends that are walking beside me in this life. And some of you may be in a place where you are not only feel invisible but also feel like you have not done anything right... That's just bogus. And I know I need stuff like this to remind me of what I'm really doing. Don't you? We moms are all building something as amazing as a cathedral one brick at a time.
For just one minute try to imagine a place where we will actually be able to see each and every moment we made happen in their little bitty parts all adding up to one incredible lifetime. That is what heaven will be. Why else would God have written about jewels in our crown if we won't even be able to see the crown. Surely we will not only see the jewel but also the reason we have it. Think about that!
But please keep in mind that though we "do" lots of things none of it will matter if we don't recognize who Jesus is and what He did for us.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
I'm invisible.

It all began to make sense, the blank stares, the lack of response, the way one of the kids will walk into the room while I'm on the phone and ask to be taken to the store. Inside I'm thinking, "Can't you see I'm on the phone?" Obviously not. No one can see if I'm on the phone, or cooking, or sweeping the floor, or even standing on my head in the corner, because no one can see me at all.

I'm invisible.

Some days I am only a pair of hands, nothing more: Can you fix this? Can you tie this? Can you open this? Some days I'm not a pair of hands; I'm not even a human being. I'm a clock to ask, "What time is it?" I'm a satellite guide to answer, "What number is the Disney Channel?" I'm a car to order, "Right around 5:30 , please."


I was certain that these were the hands that once held books and the eyes that studied history and the mind that graduated summa cum laude - but now they had disappeared into the peanut butter, never to be seen again. She's going ... she's going... she's gone!


One night, a group of us were having dinner, celebrating the return of a friend from England . Janice had just gotten back from a fabulous trip, and she was going on and on about the hotel she stayed in. I was sitting there, looking around at the others all put together so well. It was hard not to compare and feel sorry for myself as I looked down at my out-of-style dress; it was the only thing I could find that was clean. My unwashed hair was pulled up in a banana clip and I was afraid I could actually smell peanut butter in it.


I was feeling pretty pathetic, when Janice turned to me with a beautifully wrapped package, and said, "I brought you this." It was a book on the great cathedrals of Europe . I wasn't exactly sure why she'd given it to me until I read her inscription: "To Charlotte , with admiration for the greatness of what you are! building g when no one sees."


In the days ahead I would read - no, devour - the book. And I would discover what would become for me, four life-changing truths, after which I could pattern my work:

No one can say who built the great cathedrals - we have no record of their names.

These builders gave their whole lives for a work they would never see finished.

They made great sacrifices and expected no credit.

The passion of their building was fueled by their faith that the eyes of God saw everything.


A legendary story in the book told of a rich man who came to visit the cathedral while it was being built, and he saw a workman carving a tiny bird on the inside of a beam. He was puzzled and asked the man, "Why are you spending so much time carving that bird into a beam that will be covered by the roof? No one will ever see it."
And the workman replied, "Because God sees."

I closed the book, feeling the missing piece fall into place. It was almost as if I heard God whispering to me, "I see you, Charlotte. I see the sacrifices you make every day, even when no one around you does. No act of kindness you've done, no sequin you've sewn on, no cupcake you've baked, is too small for me to notice and smile over. You are building a great cathedral, but you can't see right now what it will become."

At times, my invisibility feels like an affliction. But it is not a disease that is erasing my life. It is the cure for the disease of my own self-centeredness. It is the antidote to my strong, stubborn pride. I keep the right perspective when I see myself as a great builder. As one of the people who show up at a job that they will never see finished, to work on something that their name will never be on.

The writer of the book went so far as to say that no cathedrals could ever be built in our lifetime because there are so few people willing to sacrifice to that degree.

As mothers, we are building great cathedrals. We cannot be seen if we're doing it right. And one day, it is very possible that the world will marvel, not only at what we have built, but at the beauty that has been added to the world by the sacrifices of invisible women.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Rolling Over!


Josiah has rolled over a few times in bed this week. I only got to watch him do it once though. He did it around the same age that Nate did – 4 ½ mos. He sleeps on his tummy so he rolled from front to back. We’re still working on back to front. He’s very chatty when he’s happy. Isaac and I take turns sitting in the foyer at church with him because he gets so loud sometimes.

Nate has gone in the potty off and on this week. One day he went three times! We’re offering incentive of stickers if he pees and a cookie if he poops in the potty – so far all we’ve actually gotten to do it the stickers… no cookies rewarded yet. He’s funny. When he is going somewhere, even just to bed or something he says good-bye to everything. He says “bye bye books”, “bye bye Signing Time” (when the video ends), etc. It is pretty cute.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

inside the mind of a woman

I have to tell you.... I loved reading a recent post on a friend's blog. She is a stay at home mom of three and as we all know, grown up dates don't come along everyday. So, she kind of rambled on about being excited and worrying about what to wear to go out. I'm glad I'm not the only one who frets over ultimately trivial things that are somewhat vain (but harmlessly so). I also rarely have the occasion to "dress up" so when I do I go out of my way to look stylish, cute, as thin as I can, etc. Isaac has to laugh at me sometimes because I will on occasion be all school-girlish and say that I think I look good that day. Which may sound vain, but anyone who knows me knows that that doesn't really happen all that often so I think its alright.

Saturday, July 28, 2007

Chuck E Cheese

Here are the Penrod boys when we went to the new Chuck E Cheese's in Avon. Its kind of cool - at this age Nate's happy to wander around and "play" the games without us putting tokens in or anything. He eventually wanted to ride the rides and stuff but for awhile he just sat in the video game section pretending to play the games. Janice and I enjoyed having the daddies there to help with the boys - at least until they got hooked on MarioCart or something like that.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Vacation











Here are a few pictures from our vacation. We went to Chicago to visit my friend Cindy. And then we went to the lakehouse. We went to the Shipshewana Flea Market and the usual lake stuff, boat, campfires, etc. It was nice.

Monday, June 25, 2007

Wedding Pictures


I did pictures for an old friend's wedding a couple of weeks ago. It was an outdoor event, beautiful day, gorgeous couple, it was great. I've really had fun editing the pictures. Its neat for me to look at how much my photography has improved over the last couple of years - upgrading my equipment helps! If you know of anyone who needs a photographer please pass my info along!
www.unforgettable-photography.com

Sunday, June 03, 2007

My Boys















Here is a pix of Isaac and the boys over the weekend. Aren't they cute!?! Joe is getting so strong and talkative. Nate is getting smart and so independent. They're so much fun!
I've got a wedding gig next weekend that'll be my first one this year - pray for good weather, its supposed to be outside!

Friday, May 25, 2007

Our Sweet Boys

























Here are a few "matching" pictures of Nate and Joe. Aren't they cute!?!

Monday, May 14, 2007

Going Wild


The past few weeks have flown by! Its hard to believe that a month and a half ago I was still pregnant! Now we have two boys! Nate can't seem to give Josiah enough kisses. Before Josiah was born we were bracing ourselves for Nate to have a rough transition but he's done really well. Not to say he doesn't have his "two year old moments" - oh he does! But over all he gets along pretty well with his new brother "Joe Joe Joe" as he calls him.
Josiah as you can see has filled out nicely. We haven't been to the doctor in awhile so I don't know what he weighs but judging from the looks of him, he's not missed a meal yet! He has started to give little smiles here and there and he's cooing for us now too! I forgot how neat this baby stage was! Nate is so cute in his toddler way, exploring and trying new things... but Josiah is just precious!
Here is a pix of us at the zoo last week. It was so hot that day! We were very thankful for the shade! Nate loves the zoo - he gets into making animal sounds and all that. If you look closely at Nate's shirt you can see that it has a dinosaur on it. He is so funny when he tries to say dinosaur it comes out "diodaur"! Its one of those things that he'll soon grow out of but I hope I never forget because its such a special part of this stage that he's in right now.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Adjusting



We're all still getting accustomed to being a family of four. Isaac has had the last two weeks off which has been great, but I'll have a reality check when he goes back to work tomorrow and I'm on my own with the boys!

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Our Baby Joe is Finally Here!












Wednesday late morning I started contractions that were fairly mild and not too close together. But throughout the day they got more intense and closer together. By evening we had called our support team to come over. When we finally had the midwife come we had her check and see how far dilated I was and I was already 8cm and 95% effaced! That was very encouraging since Nate had been stuck at 7cm for several hours before his c-cection. We labored for awhile longer and then ended up pushing for about 2hours. Obviously this was the first time I'd gotten to the pushing part of labor.... it was a whole different ballgame! But after 19hours of labor at 3:50am when our beautiful baby boy finally came out of me and was slipped up into my open arms it was all worth it. He was 8lbs 8oz and 21in long.(Nate was 7lb7oz) He's so precious! Nate has lots of hugs and kisses for him, but probably doesn't really get how much his life is going to change now because of this new little guy. Well, we are all still resting from the long day yesterday but we wanted to let you all know about the new life that has joined our family!

* Obviously this was the abbreviated version of the story. For those who are really interested in birth stories let me know and I'll send you a word doc with the long version.

Friday, February 16, 2007

Closer Still


Well, the time is drawing near. We are within about a month or so of the arrival of this baby! Isn't that crazy!? Everything is still looking good, we're both healthy and growing! Hopefully the next time I post it will be to announce the birth of our second child!

P.S. I tried to post a recent pix of us but Blogger is being weird. Hopefully it'll be working right when the time comes to post pix of the baby!

P.P.S. Good thing you have a friend that knows a little bit about HTML!!!
-kev

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Sleddin'














Here are Nate and JJ getting a taste of sledding. We had alot of snow that day!
We're at 34 weeks and counting! Just over a month before this baby will be making its arrival. We'll keep you posted when the big event happens! Keep us in your prayers as the time draws near!

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Happy New Year!



Well, we had a wonderful Christmas season filled with family and friends! We were blessed in many ways. Now that the excitement of the holidays have passed we're turning our focus to the baby to come. Part of me feels like March is so far away... and part of me thinks its so soon! Isn't it weird how that works? Anyway, the pregnancy is going well. Its been different than with Nate's - I think this baby is already trying to prove its individuality. We're at about 29wks and still planning on a mid-March arrival. Nate came a little early so there is a little bit of me that hopes this one will too, since I'm feeling weighed down by my growing belly. But only God knows the day and time that this one will greet us for the first time. Please continue to keep us in your prayers as we prepare for this arrival.