Thursday, June 2, 2011

The Simple Things

I was having a particularly hard day last week( tired mommy of two + no coffee= bad day) when, much to my surprise, my parents brought this over for me for lunch!

My dad –who is a chef of sorts (more about that in a future post)-- made a bacon, spinach, and crab quiche. I put the kids down for a nap and indulged. It was divine! After eating it the remainder of my day drastically improved!!!

Thanks Mom and Dad!! You knew exactly what I needed!

Friday, May 27, 2011

Arrielle at 10 months!

Our sweet girl is 10 months old which means that in two months (8 short weeks) she will be 1 year old!!! Where in the world has all the time gone??? As you can see from the pictures below, she is quite a little busy girl! I walked in my bathroom the other morning and found her rummaging through my cabinet.

When I called her name, she look at me like this: (Now how can you resist a smile like that?)

In addition to her busyness, Arrie has become a very, very fast crawler. She can get from our bedroom to the top of the stairs within the blink of an eye. I don't know what this means for her future track career but for right now, it means we have to get out the baby gates again. I feel like I just put them away with Jadon!!

She is constantly smiling!

And she LOVES to eat. Her favorites are mushed up carrots and cherrios. She definitely got the Shabaglian gene for being a passionate eater. She hums and squeals just as much as Jadon did at her age. Meal time is very loud at our house!

We just love this little girl!!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Bed Time

Daddy thought it would be funny to put Jadon's pajamas on like this:

Not funny Daddy...

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Sugar, Spice, and Everything Nice

This year marks my 4th Mother’s Day if you count the one while Jadon was in utero. For some reason, this year, I feel like I have been working hard for my “mommy stripes”. I feel like I am in full-blown “mommymode”—could it be the two crazy kids I have to keep up with on a 12-hour basis?

(Please bare with me while I go on this tangent) I am an only child and though my mother was loving, supportive, and wonderful, I did not grow up in a house as loud as the one I live in now. I didn’t see my mother, mothering anyone else but me. I didn’t have to share her attention and affection (which by the way can be both good and bad). I always knew I wanted more than one child but I had no clue what it would look like or how it would feel to love them both (I don’t know if that even makes sense). Nonetheless, for the past 10 months I’ve been doing it –being a mother of two and let me tell you, nothing could have prepared me for it. It has been an AWESOME roller coaster ride full of high peaks, sudden drops, laughs, tears –all taking place at a crazy high speed!

With that said I break my Mother’s Day weekend down to three categories: sugar, spice, and everything nice. The “sugar” part started with a wonderful annual brunch that my mom and I have been attending for probably the last 10 to 15 years. Now my mother-in-law joins us, and a very special guest – my sweet Arrielle joined us as well. It was so fun to dress her up with year.

Here are my mom and I. Over the past few years she has grown to be such a wonderful friend. Two strong personalities = butting heads when I was a teen. Now, it means passionate discussions about politics and philosophy (and by that I mean deep philosophical discussions about fashion and decorating =-)). She keeps it real with me but loves on me when I need it most. My greatest delight in the past few years has been seeing her become a grandmother. She is the best! Jadon and Arrielle adore her and it makes my day to see her face light up when she is with them.

Here Arrie is with her two grandmothers. These two women love my kiddos so much! Arrie and Jadon are truly, truly blessed to have them both in their lives!

So, for the “spice” part-- I am running a ½ marathon in July with my dear friend Alissa. On Sunday morning I awoke at 5:30 AM, nursed Arrie on one side and pumped on the other, got dressed and headed to Woodward Park for a 6 mile run! (See what I mean –full “mommymode” in effect). The run was awesome because I got to spend some quality time with a great friend who is also a new mommy of two and who understands that aforementioned roller coaster ride –but it was hard because that run HURT!!! Note to self: being 31 yrs. old and training for a ½ marathon is much harder than being 22 yrs. old and training for a full marathon!!! I had just returned from my run and found my sweet husband in the kitchen making me breakfast (sorry love, I should have taken pictures of my plate). It was wonderful and so thoughtful. And then my babies woke up and here we are trying to take a self –portrait.

They are the reason I get to celebrate this holiday! I love these two munchkins to pieces!!!!

Last, for “everything nice”, we went to my parent’s house to take pictures and then we were off to Sweet Tomatoes for a bit of lunch and family time. And, finally the afternoon ended with a nap (woo-hoo)!

Thank you to all of the women: friends, sisters, aunts, grandmothers, cousins, etc. who love me and “mother” me all year long. I especially missed spending a little time with my sweet Aunt Robbie this year. She is truly like a 2nd mother to me. I love her dearly!!

Saturday, May 7, 2011

The truths God has taught me about motherhood

I just want to share a few thoughts on this Mother's Day eve. Because I know that the Lord’s love for me far exceeds the love I have for my children (though this is hard for me to comprehend at times) I know these truths:

-He only wants the best for me. This fact brings tears to my eyes because I so strongly feel that way for Jadon and Arrielle and if it is true for me, I feel that I spend half of my time fighting God to get my way instead of just trusting that He knows best…Sound familiar to those mommies with toddlers =-)?

-Sometimes I just need to be still and know that He is God. Just relax and bask in His presence. Arrielle is NOT a cuddler. It is so hard for me to get her to just relax and lay in my arms. She wants to be up and busy and in the mix of things. How much do I miss out on in terms of understanding God’s presence in my life because of my busyness?…I just need to relax and lay in His arms more often.

-He doesn’t simply want me to do the right thing; He wants me to understand why it’s the right thing to do. I don’t just want Jadon not to run out in the middle of the street. I need him to understand that there are cars driving by at high speeds and if a car were to hit him, he could be severely injured and that is why he shouldn’t run in the street.

-Sometimes the hardest most painful lessons are the best ones. Do you ever find that after a really bad temper tantrum passes, or after a super dramatic time-out ( you know the one where they’re laid out in the corner crying like someone just cut off their leg), or a little spanking, that you and ( your toddler) feel a bit stronger for going through it. That’s not to say that there won’t be other times for discipline, but you know that lessons are being learned and that’s half the battle. I know the Lord has had me walk through some hard times of discipline and though it was painful, it made me stronger.

-Speaking of discipline… He loves me all the more in the midst of it.

-Patience comes with the territory. And though we test His on every level –just like my little ones test mine, I hold on to the last shreds of it so that I don’t go insane. Thank goodness the Lord doesn’t run out of patience with me!

-He couldn’t be more proud to claim me as His own! Thank you Jesus. I LOVE my two babies. I could not have asked for better children even if I were completely in control of that. I am so proud to be on this journey of life with them. So, I can only imagine how the Lord feels to call me one of His babies.

And as Mother's Day approaches I am still open to learning more lessons.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Bay Area Memories!

Before our big move we tried to squeeze in as many visits and play dates as possible. Here are a few pictures documenting our time.

First, our sweet friends the Bertera’s hosted a going –away party for David and me. We invited friends from our Bible Study. We used to meet at the Bertera home in San Leandro before they moved. Since our Bible Study days people have had multiple children, gotten married, and moved to other parts of the Bay Area. It was nice to get everyone together again under one roof –even if it was because we were moving away!

Our lovely host, Maggie

Robyn, Daniella, and Arrielle

Some of the guys hanging out and eating the yummy brunch

Liz and Loran

jenny , Shereen , and Kyle

Me and Arrielle

The kids had so much fun that by the time we got home they were knocked out! I m so sad that I didn't get more pictures of the festivities.

Jadon got to hang out at his favorite the park in San Leandro with Micah and Biruk

The boys trying to figure out what to do with their new toy...

They got tired of me taking pictures of them. =-)

We went to the Oakland zoo with the Bandels.

These two have been hanging out literally since birth. They are growing up way too fast!!

My friend Jessie and her sweet daughter Karina came from Santa Clara to visit us !

We had lunch with Auntie Christy in Alameda!

We went to story time one last time! (It makes me sad to look at these pictures—Jadon LOVED going to the library for story time with miss Tina!) Luckily, Zoe and Biruk joined him. These three had sooo much fun together!

Miss Tina truly has a gift with the way she draws the kids into her stories and songs!

Our sweet neighbor Auntie Brenda and her Granddaughter, Zoe.

Jadon and Biruk

Jadon tries to steal one last hug from Zoe!

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Celebrating Easter

I am truly beginning to see how the holidays take on a more special meaning when you have children. This Easter was especially meaningful to me because it was the first Easter where we could explain to Jadon the true meaning of the holiday—aside from the Easter bunny, Easter baskets, candy, etc. We talked to him about our savior Jesus Christ and the sacrifice He made on the cross for us.

With the craziness of moving, unpacking, reorganizing and adjusting to a new city, my heart and mind was not focused. For example, I usually take note of Ash Wednesday –the beginning of Lent , the 40 days prior to Easter. This year, I was completely oblivious. I didn’t even realize Easter was approaching until about two weeks before the date! So, what better way to focus my mind and heart than to teach my sweet two year old about Jesus’ ultimate sacrifice? I decided to do a craft day to show him instead of tell him. (Now if you know me, you know I am not a crafty type of person so this was going to be interesting.) I did some research (btw, there is ton of fun stuff on the Internet for preschoolers!!), and I called in some reinforcements. My sister-in-law, Andrea and cousin, Cherie have been doing preschool letter days with their little ones where they do awesome crafts. I thought that this would be a great opportunity for Jadon to hang out with his cousins while mommy got some help from a few experts. And what resulted was a beautiful morning of fun and learning!

Here the cousins wait for their craft instructions.

First, Aunt Andrea explained the importance of Easter. Then we made "Resurrection Rolls". They are a combination of a marshmallow dipped in butter, cinnamon and sugar, and then wrapped in a crescent roll! YUMMY! The marshmallow is suppose to represent Jesus' body, the cinnamon represents the oil and spices that were rubbed on Him after His death, and the crescent roll represents the tomb. Awesome, right? (I found this activity online).

When the rolls are cooked and ready to be eaten, we see that the marshmallow (Jesus' body) has disappeared and the roll (the tomb) is empty! Jesus is alive! The kids LOVED this! They loved eating the rolls too!

Next we made a replica of the cross and empty tomb with sticks, yarn, rocks, plastic grass, an empty eggshell, and paper plate.


On Easter Sunday, we dressed up in our Sunday best and went to church.

Afterwards, we gathered at Jessie and Allie’s house for a pizza party and Easter Egg Hunt.

This was Jadon’s first Easter Egg Hunt. Here the kids are getting in position for the big race!

It took him about two seconds to get the hang of it and then he was on a mission to find as many eggs as possible!

The end result was a bag full of eggs! He was so proud of himself that for the rest of the afternoon, he refused to put down his bag. He literally carried it with him running about the backyard with the other kids for an hour or so. We kept asking if we could hold it for him but he said, “no”. Later we found him in a secluded part of the backyard, under a tree, eating his chocolates. That was probably his plan all along. Who knew he could delicately unwrap the thin foil from around those chocolate eggs?…

Before the afternoon ended, we took some pictures with the family.

This Easter holiday was wonderful, we got to spend some quality time together as a family. Last year, Arrielle was still in my tummy. This year, we were able to share this awesome holiday with our two sweet babies! And, the most important part of all is that our Savior has risen from the dead and we no longer have to face eternal damnation –because we believe, we are saved and have the promise of eternal life. Thank you Jesus!!!