Saturday, September 29, 2007

Free of Commitments

As of 1pm today I am free of commitments and ready for baby Fred to arrive.

OK, I am exaggerating a little, but not completely. The marriage weekend that I have been planning is now over. Everyone lived through the experience, including me and the child care workers. Although the three workers that failed to show up this morning should fear for their very lives! But we all lived and somehow managed to take care of the kiddos, thanks in part to Michelle who is now one of my new best friends. I think she was mostly scarred from the experience of running the nursery this morning, but she gained some serious muscles walking those kiddos up and down the halls. Hopefully she will still want to have children of her own one day.

SO, that is that. I have asked Fred not to make her appearance until after this coming weekend. I would like a week to rest, although this next week looks actually busier than this past week was. But I have confidence that Fred will hold off for a little while. I started washing all her little baby clothes and blankets this afternoon. I think that tonight I am going to finish steaming the kitchen floors, as that is on my master list of things to get done before she arrives.

I am glad to be able to focus on my fam for the next couple of weeks and get ready for this new baby. I want to spend some qt with Miss Hadleigh Claire, as in a couple weeks she will no longer be my only priority.

As a funny side note, our fav babysitter Ruth Anne mentioned that this morning Hadleigh Claire ate her snack and then proceeded to eat everyone else's snack in the toddler room. Yea.

Friday, September 28, 2007

Survivor: China

Well, it is that time of year again...Survivor. I know, I am obsessed. I am even catching up on the seasons of Survivor I missed while living in Germany.

I am so dedicated to Survivor that I am watching it online this season. Our TV has been on the fritz since July, when it was struck by lightning. People on the west coast think it odd that I say this...but I figure all Georgians will understand the meaning.

Anyway, I woke up early this morning, as usual, but instead of my usual routine I went straight for CBS to watch last night's full episode. Tell me, please who else is so dedicated that they would rise at 6am to watch.

My bro has put together a pool for this season, and I picked Erik to go all the way. Dan seems convinced that it is because Erik looks like Ethan (from Survivor III: Kenya). I did like Ethan, but not that much. My motives for picking Erik are completely pure.

1. He is a southern boy.
2. He went to Furman and I know a lot of cool peeps that went to Furman.
3. He isn't the strongest, most loud, leader type that always gets voted out first.
4. He at least has a great shot at making it to the merge...though I thought that about Bobby Jon from Palau...ah well.

So, there you have it. You can check out his blog to see his predictions...interesting. All in all I am happy with how things are going so far in the season. Go Erik!

Thursday, September 27, 2007


This week I am super thankful for the morning program that little Hadleigh has been attending. Having the break for me has been fabulous. I have been busy with the planning of this mini marriage conference, and then also getting the house ready for Fred's arrival. Having 3 hours I can devote to whatever (one week sleeping) has been a little dream.

As nice as the break has been for me, it has been doubly fun for Hadleigh. From what I can tell she LOVES her class. She does the usual cry-show for me as I drop her off, but this week before I had even gotten out of the classroom door she had stopped. They play and sing and go to the playground. This week our refrigerator is the proud displayer of her first art project. I am so proud! When I pick her up she sings all the way home, so sweet.

I think that I have mentioned this before, but HC is an avid reader. We actually have more books than toys in the house. She has two baskets full of board books, like "The Very Hungry Caterpillar" and then we have a small bookcase full of big girl books. She likes her board books, but she LOVES her big girl books. At least two times a day we will read several big girl books. Sometimes she likes me to read them to her and other times she likes to read them herself. This week her favorite is "Oh the Places You'll Go". She pours over the pictures again and again and points out all the things that she knows on each page. After reading in her big girl books for quite a while, she will reluctantly go "play", which usually means pouring over her board books. That is my girl, the reader.

I took the above picture a couple weeks ago when my friend, Jess came for a visit. Hadleigh jumped in her chair and Jess continued to hand her stuffed animals (which she loves almost as much as books). She was completely surrounded by animals and was hugging and kissing each of them. She is so sweet.

On a different note, I think my body is getting a little used to Fred being so low. By the end of the day, wowee, do I ever strut/waddle around, but it is not as bad during the first half of the day. I am relieved. Monday I also made a master To-Do list of all the things that need to get done before she arrives. It has everything from, washing her baby clothes to getting the car seat ready, to organizing the closet in the bathroom. I look forward to knocking out the list and then waiting patiently for her arrival.

Monday, September 24, 2007

A Girl Named Fred

When I was prego with Hadleigh, my friend Jess decided she wanted to guess the name. I promised her that if she guessed correctly I would tell her. She had some decent guesses, Abigail and Madeline, but she was WAY off. This time she hasn't guessed at all, even though last week at community group Dave said he would give anyone $100 if they guessed the name correctly. I guess we are pretty confidant in our selection.

So, through a series of events Jessica publicly proclaimed our little girl's name- Fredericka Shoba. ANd now I have heard there is a song about being in love with a girl named Fred. So it seem fitting that for the last few weeks in utero to call our little girl Fred.

I totally freaked at my doctors visit last week because they said I was 35 weeks. OK, I knew this, but still when someone says it outloud, it is like...HOLY CRAP...this baby is coming soon! I have felt that state of shock for a few days now.

Friday we set-up Hadleigh and Fred's room. At least the furniture is rearranged and the second crib is up. It is hard to get everything to fit in a room...two cribs, changing table, dresser, etc. I think we came up with an arrangement that will do.

Saturday Dave's parents came down for a visit which was SO fun, but I was feeling so tired and uncomfortable. Yesterday I started getting concerned and sat down to think about what I was actually feeling. Then I realized, Fred had dropped! I was able to do a little more research to find out, yes indeed, the things I was feeling lined up with the baby dropping. I can breath better, which is a treat, but yesterday she felt so low I literally thought she is going to drop out of me! I didn't have this kind of pressure with Hadleigh. Right before bed last night, I blew my nose and I decided I better blow my nose lying down because I was sure she was going to come flying out!

So, anyway, dropping doesn't mean could mean we are close, or it could mean we are still 5 weeks away. But I really hope I don't have to be this uncomfortable for the next 5 weeks. I am open to other advice on the dropping thing, because I really can't spend the next several weeks blowing my nose in a horizontal position.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

The Buh or the Bye...Buh-Bye

I love this SNL sketch. Fave line is when Helen Hunt says, "I am sorry what part did you not understand the buh or the bye...buh-bye." That is a bit how I have felt this week, like what part of this do you not understand, because to me it is all very simple.

So I think I have mentioned this before, but here's me, hyper-responsible, controlling, first born, rules follower, do I need to say more? I can be flexible, in some rare circumstances, but it does happen occasionally. Like, dare I mention that Hadleigh has been eating peanut butter since she was 10 months old...I know, shocking (for all the non-moms out there, American Pediatrics recommends 18 months old for PB).

There are a lot of wonderful reasons to have rules, spoken and unspoken, and there are lots of good reasons to follow rules. Americans and Brits have the concept of the line down, so when you are in Europe and you fly Ryan Air out of London everyone gets in a nice queue without touching anyone else. You would think that as anal as the Germans are, they would have it down too, but no. When the Germans announce boarding everyone crowds and pushes, really obnoxious for me, a rule follower.

I have a strong sense of right and wrong, black and white (not that it is always correct, but still), so in my jobs I was always fighting against the exceptions that are always around in every job. The crazy missionary who thinks they don't need any cross-cultural training, or the crazy soldier who thinks because of their rank they can take a test whenever they want. Ugh.

When you have a boss, there is always a balance that you strike, and they make you be creative and bend and find solutions, etc. But sometimes it is just still irritating, because in the end, if there is a mess because of the exception, guess who cleans it up?

In any case, there are lots of people out there. Not everyone is like me. Thank goodness there are many gracious, and accommodating people out there. People who want to see everyone included and everyone get a chance, and who can see creative solutions to problems. But I know that sometimes they just don't understand me, and I don't understand them. And sometimes we drive each other crazy.

It is like that tension between truth and love. I need to speak the truth. Someone else wants to just love and never say anything. There is a balance...I need some love and others need some truth.

Did I preface all of this sufficiently?

I was in a situation recently where there was a deadline. To me, a deadline means that I need to do something by a certain date, or not do it at all. 12.01 hits and the carriage turns into a pumpkin. No second chances, just a "better luck next time" pat on the back. But shockingly, to some a deadline is merely an interesting idea and has little to do with reality.

For me, I care about accommodating others, but I don't care enough to change a deadline. I just say, what part of this did you not understand? There is an order to things that makes all of life simpler. BUT sometimes it is more important to care for the person over my precious deadline.
Not today, but sometimes.

I was theologizing about all of this last night with Dave. If I believe God is sovereign, then can I safely say everyone who signed up on time was meant to attend, and those who didn't weren't meant to attend? I think that I can safely say that, though it is not an excuse for me to not care about people. On the other hand, sometimes I feel less than cared for when others are making life hard for me by extending my deadlines. It seems an interesting predicament.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Can You Be Green and Smoke?

Last Saturday Dave and I attended a “green” concert at Piedmont Park with the Allman Brothers and Dave Matthews. It was quite an interesting experience.

Because the concert was "green" there weren't allowing parking anywhere in the vicinity of the park. Dave actually got a parking pass for Colony Square from someone at work, so we drove to Midtown earlier in the day, parked the car and headed to the High Museum to check out the Annie Lebowitz photography exhibit. We then jumped on MARTA and came home. IN addition to the concert there was a Braves game, so we thought MARTA would be swamped by the time we left the concert. So I suppose we are only partially green.

We picked up our babysitter and literally ran to MARTA...oh the sight...and the contractions. We jumped off at Midtown and walked down 10th to the Park, along with a sea of other people who were mostly sober...mostly.

Once in the park we managed to hook up with one of Dave's buddies from work (because his office purchased tickets for everyone) and then slowly pushed our way through the crowds and across other folks blankets to be able to sit with the rest of the office folks. It wasn't the best situation for a 33+ week prego lady. I felt a bit out of place. I was one of the only people sitting down (as we were super close to the stage), and because there were no chairs, only blankets spread out everywhere folks were stumbling over me quite a bit. At one point some chics, who were slightly wasted started yelling at people for daring to walk near the prego lady, and they formed a mini circle around me and made folks walk around. It was actually funny. I thought, at the time, they were folks from Dave's office, but come to find out they were just strangers who had taken up my cause.

Dave enjoyed the concert, though it was hard for me. If I stood I had contractions and if I sat I just couldn't get really comfortable. Did I mention it was at least 92 degrees and humid? We did make it out alive and left about 2 hours into the show. Dave had gotten his fill (well, he would have stayed for the wholet hing if it weren't for me, so I felt a little bad).

The whole "green" concert thing was amusing to me. OK, so the beer cans and cups were biodegradable, but who cares when they are left in piles of trash all over the park. And the cigarette butts...I just kept thinking, you can't care about the environment and smoke. They don't fit together.

A word to the wise. When you are 8 months prego and invited to a concert outside with no chairs and 75,000 people, it might be best to pass it up.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Big Bootie

I had this friend in Baumholder who had this youth group song called Big Bootie. I am not sure how you spell bootie, either, is it boody, or boodie, or booty?

Anyway, my little Miss has one! She is 24 pounds. Ugh! So heavy! And she is 32 inches long. So 50% for weight and 75% for height. It is pretty amazing how all those things can change in just a matter of a couple months. These babies grow in spurts!

She had an emotional breakdown in the doctor's office, which was very plesant for me to try to deal with, thanks a lot HC! But we survived the morning and now she is sleeping it off.

On another fascinating note, Dave's business, McNumb Dental, just paid their (our) first taxes. As we added up everything yesterday and submitted payments, Dave's comment was "it is amazing how easy the government makes it to give them money." It has been a fun 8 weeks for me as I am keeping track of money and reconciling statements and trying to figure out how much tax we owe. Good times.

Monday, September 10, 2007

It Happened

So I had always heard about this happenings to families. Just for the record it had happened to us when we first began hosting the community group at our house. Now we have settled into our Wednesday evening routine and haven't bickered about how to make the spaghetti in about a month.

So, like I said, yesterday was my first experience of a pre-church bicker. We were rushing trying to get to church a bit early so I could drop off something to someone before the first service. I jumped off the bus first with my purse and diaper bag. Dave jumped off second with Hadleigh and the box of stuff. We went to make the exchange, I needed the box and he needed the diaper bag. thing I know Dave is probably trying to tease me about something and I just want the box! Words...and I stormed off, box in hand. Bah!

Then of course, the day went from bad to worse as I dropped off the box and realized someone I thought was going to do something for me, wasn't actually going to do it. Completely overwhelmed I retreated to a bathroom stall and had a good cry. I vented my frustration at the whole situation and finally just admited my own weakness to the Lord.

15 minutes later I emerged, found Dave, had another little cry in front of the whole fellowship, and was feeling a bit better by the time the class started.

Worship was wonderful and what a wonderful time to be able to rest and find comfort in realness of the Lord's forgiveness, and in communion remembering his death has washed me whiter than snow.

Another Townend song:

My heart is filled with thankfulness
To Him who bore my pain
Who plumbed the depths of my disgrace
And gave me life again
Who crushed my curse of sinfulness
And clothed me in His light
And wrote His law of righteousness
With power upon my heart

My heart is filled with thankfulness
To Him who walks beside
Who floods my weaknesses and strengths
And causes fear to fly
Whose every promise is enough
For every step I take
Sustaining me with arms of love
And crowning me with grace

My heart is filled with thankfulness
To Him who reigns above;
Whose wisdom is my perfect peace;
Whose every thought is love.
For every day I have on earth
Is given by then King.
So I will give my life, my all,
To love and follow Him.

Friday, September 07, 2007

18 Months

Today Miss Hadleigh Claire is 18 months old. She seems like such a big girl!

She has definitely gotten the whole walking thing under control and looks like she is about to startg running. Watching her toddle around the house is just hilarious. She loves her shoes and socks (ocks) and insists on wearing them for the entire day.

Her vocabulary seems to expand everyday which is just amazing to me. It seems that she understands me completely and is always demonstrating her new knowledge of words. We enjoy singing the head, shoulders, knees and toes song. She recognizes each part and can find it on her body and on mine. We also regularly read Sandra Boynton's book Horns to Toes and she LOVES pointing to everything, especially her belly button, or her baby, as she calls it. She was actually walking around church last Sunday and showing the people around her belly button. It was hilarious. Her animal sounds have increased too and now she is starting to do a more realistic pig sound.

In teaching her all the animal sounds we always asked "what does a little girl say" and we taught her that a little girl says hi. Last week I had her on my ever shrinking lap, trying to sing to her before bedtime. She was a little upset, and was more in favor of reading a book. After a little struggle she started to cry, and I said, "It isn't time to read a book, little girl" to which she responded with a tearful "hi". It took me a minute to figure out why she had stopped crying and was saying hi, and then I just busted up laughing.

She is still a great sleeper, taking a two hour afternoon nap and then she sleeps from 6pm-8am. The nighttime sleep has been great for me because it allows me time in the morning to get up, get breakfast, shower, check email, read and then get her up and ready. I love my mornings!

Reading is our favorite past time. When we get up for the day or after her nap we spend some time reading from her "big girl" collection of books. Those are the books that have paper pages that can be ripped. She LOVES Wild about Books, and The Little Green Island, as well as some of the Dr. Seuss books and anything Peter Rabbit. At other times of the day we read from her board books. I have two baskets full of books (way more books than toys) and I still feel like I need more because she LOVES to read. She loves the Sandra Boynton books Moo, Baa, LaLaLa and helps recite the book to us, an the she loves all of her peek-a-boo books and anything with animals. The Very Hungry Caterpillar has been another fav.

She is still completely a daddy's girl and obsessed with Dave. She asks for him all day long while he is at work and when he comes in the door she squeals in delight. We haven't been able to get her to understand that I am not Dada. She doesn't really call me anything, but when pressed she will call me Dada. We have been trying to teach her Mama, but she doesn't seem to put the two together. The closest she gest to saying Mama is Mimi, but she doesn't link that name to me, so I don't know. I guess one day she will figure it out.
At church, Hadleigh has just graduated to the Toddler II class. She has done a great job, enjoys the workers and loves to walk into the class by herself, and no crying! She did the same this week at her little morning class. However, she had some trouble in the nursery during my Bible study yesterday. I am hoping it was just a first week thing and not an indication of trouble to come.
We love to dance and love music. Every morning I will put on a CD, she really enjoys Indelible Grace's new CD Beams of Heaven (that is right in this family we dance to hymns). She listens and will rock back and forth and clap and giggle. She really likes it when Dave dances to the hymns. And now as I am typing this I just think, this is a really odd family thing to do. But hye, who made up the rule that you can't learn great truths about God and dance at the same time?
Another interesting development this month has been a couple of fears. She is now afraid of thunder and sirens. Dave is really big on encouraging her to overcome these fears, so he tried to teach her to clap and say "yea they got the bad guy" when she hears a siren. Well, it hasn't caught on, exactly. The other day she heard a siren (we hear sirens many times a day) and got really concerned and started running toward me, wimpering and once she got to my arms she started clapping while still wimpering. I felt like she was saying...ok, I know I am supposed to clap and maybe if I do the sirens will go away. I just laughed. I mentioned this incident to my friend, Kris and she encouraged me to pray with her. Novel idea...pray? Why had that not crossed my mind? I am so unspiritual! So, now we pray instead of clapping.
I think that is the update. I should proably also mention that has been given to some fits recently when she doesn't get her way. Lovely. As well, she is quite possessive of "her" toys or anything she thinks might be hers. These things serve to remind us that she was born with a sin nature...darn original sin. It also makes me aware of my need for Christ to give wisdom to me as we teach her about God. It also reminds me to be in constant prayer that she will grow to be a lover of God, and that she will never know a day without him. That is our prayer for both of our girls. How amazing and gracious it would be for our girl to be able to say that they have always known the Lord.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Miss Hadleigh Claire Goes to School

Yesterday was Miss Hadleigh Claire's first day of "school". We were able to find a local church that has a parents morning out program, so one day a week she will spend the morning with 6 other kiddos playing and ignoring each other. One fun thing is that she in the same class with her buddy, Brennan, John and Brea's little boy.

I dressed her in her $2 outfit from the Children's Place. The top was $1 and the skirt was $1. And she wore her fav shoes from Stride Right, but I won't tell you how much those were...but they have been worth EVERY penny I paid for them.
I thought there might be some hesitation on her part yesterday morning, but she walked right into the class and started to play. Her teachers are super sweet and she even gave them a hug when she walked in and a hug when she left. I packed her lunch like a good mama, and then found out that she only ate her grapes and crackers...not a very good lunch!

She was in great spirits when I picked her up and then took a terrific nap in the afternoon. YEA!

I plan to use my extra time to clean without her underfoot, and also to put my feet up. No swelling yet, but you can never be sure. I figure that once the little one comes it will be especially nice to have some time with just her.

Yesterday I was able to make a run to Publix, and then spent my time cleaning and cooking. Our Community Group had a surprise shower for one of the couples who is getting married. They thought we were just having our usual CG dinner for the first Wednesday of the month. But sneaky us, we invited some of their other friends and had a feast of tapas and a few fun gifts...including an ironing board!

The food was great, everyone from the group pitched and it was a pretty kick butt meal. Matt and Mary Katherine are getting married in just a couple of weeks, so we hoped it was a special blessing to take a moment out with their friends to celebrate and pray for their marriage.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Radical Reformission

Finally I have finished. For the last copule months I have been reading The Radical Reformission...Reaching Out without Selling Out by Mark Driscoll. It was fabulous, and I have nothing but good things to say about it.

For those Intowners, if you pick it up, you will think, yea I heard similar stuff to this for the 6 years that Scot Sherman was our pastor. Basic concept behind the book- as Christians we are called to redeem culture, and the way we redeem culture is by being part of the culture. But we can only redeem culture by staying true to the Bible. If we focus on the culture to the exclusion of the truth of the Bible we become irrelevant, liberal, and universal (Jesus came to save everyone, no one is going to hell, etc). If we focus on the Bible to the exclusion of the culture we become irrelevant, pharasaical, fundamentalists who are more concerned with building a Christian sub-culture where people don't drink and smoke, or hang out with people who do.

He definitely clicks with a side of the emerging church movement, but he is more on what I would call, the conservative side of things, as in not ditching the institution, or preaching etc.

Theologically, a postmodern church addicted to egalitarianism is also a peculiar commitment to making sure that everyone's voice is equally heard and everyone's input is equally considered, whether or not it is foolish, as if the church were one big internet chat room. Some churches have gone so far as to replace a preaching monologue from a recognized leader to a spiritual dialogue among a group of peers who refuse to acknowledge any leader in authority over them. This makes about as much sense as shooting your doctor and gathering with the other patients in his lobby to speculate about what is wrong with one another and randomly write out prescriptions for one another in the name of equality.

Another reason you might want to read this book, as if what I have given you isn't enough, is that one of the chapters is entitled "The Sin of Light Beer" and it is all about why Christians are allowed to drink. I hate beer, but I liked the chapter, especially because it quote Martin Luther and Calvin who loved their alcohol. All this talk is making me wish that I wasn't prego. 7 more weeks!

Driscoll had so many good things to say that it was a refreshing read. It was also incredibly challenging as I look at my own life and think about how the Lord would call me to be part of reforming the culture in my section of life. Good stuff.

So, now if anyone has a copy of McLaren's book Generous Orthodoxy, let me know. I would just prefer to borrow it.

Monday, September 03, 2007

Labor Day Weekend

I pondered the name of this weekend for about four minutes today. My thoughts went something like this. That is funny, it is Labor Day weekend and we did some heavy labor this weekend. Well, actually, Dave did the labor and I watched. Hmm. I think it is called Labor Day because it should be a day free from labor. Wouldn't it be cool to go into labor on Labor Day?

So, here I am. Wishing to go into labor, though not really. I am still seven weeks away, so it would not be good to go into labor now. But it would be nice in some ways to be done.

Moving on. Here is our weekend in review.

Friday morning all three of us headed out to visit Hadleigh Claire's new school. She was able to meet her teacher, see her room, and meet some of the other "students" as I called them. It seems like a really fun place and HC seemed as if she owned the classroom after being there only 5 minutes. There are lots of puzzles and games and book and fun places to sit and play. She will also be in class with her bud, Brennan. It doesn't get any better than that.

Dave spent the rest of Friday ripping out the shower doors, scraping out mold (from underneath the shower doors) and recalking the bath tub. Since the bathtub was unusable, HC got her first bath in the sink. Now that I think about, I think we bathed her in a sink while we were in Venice last year. So this is her first bath in an American sink.

Saturday my best bud, Kris and I went out to get pedicures. This is a fav activity of mine, and my two fav pedicure partners are Jess and Kris. My toe nails are all pretty, and it was good to catch up with Kris while giggling because the pedicure tickles.

We also had a fun visit from our Baumholder buds, Grant and Jessica. They are now stationed in Columbus, so it is just a short jaunt away. They have their own photography business and so while they were here they took some prego pictures. You can check out their blog and photo site here. Hire them, they are super. Crazy story, when all their household goods were delivered to them in Columbus a couple weeks ago, one of the movers stole all their camera equipment. Insane! Fortunately the insurance covered it and they were able to purchase all new equipment, so it all worked out.
Worship on Sunday was awesome. What a privilege it is to have a senior pastor! God is so faithful to have brought John Tinnin to Intown. But I should probably save my thoughts on this for another post. Especially since I have already committed the cardinal sin of blogging. Giving a detailed description of my weekend. Sorry Jess!
So, now Dave is off at a Labor Day party drinking beer and eating meat. I am having some contractions, so I better go put my feet up. Happy Labor Day!