Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Nolan is Two Months Old!

Yesterday marked two months since Nolan joined our family.  Wow!  Time flies by so fast!  He is such a happy, easy going baby (except in the late evening…I guess everyone needs a fussy time).  Recently he has started smiling and making all kinds of little happy noises.  He loves to have company – definitely the social butterfly type of second child!  If I walk out of the room or he is not included in what is going on, he cries.  He particularly likes his play gym and bouncy chair right now.

Nolan 2 months old
“Aww, Mom!  Not more pictures!”

Nolan 2 months old
“You were serious, weren’t you?”

Nolan 2 months old

Nolan 2 months old

Nolan 2 months old

Nolan 2 months old

Nolan 2 months old
There…I captured his smile without blurry movements!  He is very active and always has something in motion!  Nolan’s shirt says “Made You Smile” and that is what he does…everyday!

Wordless Wednesday: Fun at the Beach for Miss Jeanne’s Pee-Wee Party


IMG_1097    IMG_1092


Sunday, August 28, 2011

Things I’ve Learned this Week…

…random lessons from the life of a NYC mommy…

:: Sleep is not overrated.  I’ve been getting more of it since Nolan has slept through the night (7+ hours) every night this week. 

::  Elaine is too smart for her own good…sometimes.  She helped herself to a screwdriver to try to open the battery compartment on Nolan’s play gym (when she couldn’t get the music to come on).  Unfortunately, Nolan was right underneath her.  Fortunately, Mommy walked in just in time!

:: Elaine watches everything.  She has started nursing her baby doll this week.  Then she burps Betsy.  Just like I do with Nolan.

:: The news reporters and weather forecasters are not always right.  Hurricane Irene was a bust, at least in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn.  They totally played it up too big.  Ben was told by a reliable source this week that they were trying to make up for botching the snow removal from the Dec. 26th blizzard last year.  We had rain, and some windy gusts.  When we went to bed last night the Weather Channel said we had a “3-10% chance of Tropical Storm or Hurricane conditions.”  (It wasn’t even a picture worthy storm…and that says a lot coming from someone who takes pictures of everything).  I haven’t heard yet about the status of the lower areas, such as Sheepshead Bay/Coney Island near where our church is located.

:: 90% humidity is not good for getting clothes dried.  My living room looks like a laundry facility with all of the makeshift drying contraptions holding wet towels and diapers!

:: Blogging provides inspiration.  I enjoyed making some things for Elaine this week…all of which I found on other blogs. 

  • Ruffled Skirt – made from one of my old t-shirts, this project took me an hour (but that included interruptions).

img_1086So you can’t see the skirt very well…but isn’t she a cute model?

  • Button Snake – this was a Busy Bag idea.  Just a ribbon with buttons on each end, and squares of felt or flannel to thread onto it.  Keeps Elaine busy!  (Tutorialvariationvariation)



  • Pom-Pom Push-It – Just a sour cream container with a hole cut in the lid.  Elaine has to push the pom-poms through the slightly smaller hole.  Another easy project!




Thursday, August 25, 2011

Thankful Thursday: Fun Summer Days

Here are some summer activities that we have been enjoying:

:: Meeting Erika & Kevin Meader in CT for lunchimg_0939
Kevin & Elaine – same size, Elaine is 7 mo. older

Gotta love her face!

:: The baseball game which ended up rained out before it started

Nolan loves baseball!

Dark clouds over the ball park.  They had tarped the field hoping to be able to play the game.

:: Time at the park ::
Elaine loves being one of the “big kids” now and not needing Mommy’s assistance to play at the park.


:: Cooler days mean more play time in Elaine’s room img_1064
She has been great at self-entertaining for hours with her toys and books at her bedroom window

:: Shopping trips and outings
Here we are ready to head to Costco.  Elaine brought her Bible and new purse along!

:: Picking weeds flowers on the walk home
That’s my girl – she has a great smile

:: Ice Cream Cones


Remembering Gramps

Today marks one year since my Gramps stepped into eternity with Jesus.  I can hardly believe that it has been a year.  (Read more here and here). I’m sure the time has dragged by for Grams as she has had to make many life adjustments. 

I was thinking about Gramps this week.  I was remembering everything that took place at this time last year.  I was leaving the Bay Mart after a regular shopping trip.  Elaine was in the stroller.  Mom called and I cheerfully answered the phone.  She said, “It’s not happy news that I’m calling with.  Gramps is in critical condition.”  Gramps is the first loved one that I have lost, and it was very sudden.  I just didn’t expect to hear my mom say those words.

After Dad and his siblings made it to Oklahoma to say their goodbyes, the decision was made to remove Gramps from life support.  It was very early in the morning.  Dad called me right afterward Gramps because I am an hour ahead and he knew I would be awake.  It was one of the few times that I remember hearing my dad cry.

I remember talking to Grams on the phone.  I needed some funeral details in order to book a bereavement airfare.  For lack of knowing what to say, I asked how she was.  Her response was, “God is good.”  What a response in such a time of sadness!

As I thinking about these things, I also thought about these verses in 1 Thessalonians 4:

14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him.  15 For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep.  16 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first:  17 Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.  18 Wherefore comfort one another with these words.

I’m comforted by the promise that we will see Gramps again.  In fact, if the Lord tarries, Gramps will be one of the first ones to meet Jesus in the air.  It’s sad when I remember that he is not here on earth with us anymore, but it makes me jealous to think that he is already in heaven, worshipping the Lord along with the angels.

Christmas in ColoradoGramps, Grams, and me – Christmas 2008

Godby Family Reunion in Arkansas
The last time I saw Gramps – family reunion in Arkansas, June 2010

Gramps' Funeral
This has become one of my favorite pictures – Wesley, Me, Elaine, Grams, and Kenny after Gramps’ memorial service.

Grams – I love you and I’m praying for you today.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

“A {girl} that hath friends…

…must show {herself} friendly.”  ~ Proverbs 18:24

BBF Church Picnic 2011Elaine Hamilton, Selah Humala, and Adelei Barker
Summer Picnic, 2011

BBF Church Picnic 2011Blessed to have friends!

Nolan Learns to Share

Our downstairs neighbors just gave Nolan this play gym.  Nolan was a typical male and showed little expression about the new toy.  Elaine, however, was ecstatic.  So Nolan was gracious enough to “share” his new toy with his older sister.  He even put up with her demonstration of how everything works.  Check it out…



Wordless Wednesday: The Faces of Nolan (7 weeks old)










Monday, August 22, 2011

Manhattan Beach

I have been telling Ben all summer that I wanted to go and walk along the beach…any beach…in NYC.  The last time we took in a sandy shoreline was in Virginia Beach over a year ago.  Elaine now loves the water and playing outside, so I thought she would enjoy the waves on her toes and building sand castles.  On a perfect-almost-fallish-evening we packed up our gear and headed for Manhattan Beach (which is really in Brooklyn).

I dressed Elaine in her swim suit underneath her clothes, even though I intended to walk and not swim at the beach.  I guess that was silly thinking!  We were busy setting down our bags and picking a spot in the sand while Elaine made a bee line straight for the waves.  She went crashing in without regard to depth, sand, or salt.  And she loved it!  She floated, she sank, she held Daddy’s hand, and she shivered, but she did not want to get out.

Manhattan Beach  Manhattan Beach
Swimming with Daddy – I love her pony tail!

Manhattan Beach

Manhattan Beach

Manhattan Beach

When we finally convinced Elaine to warm up a little in the sand, she wanted only to knock down the sand castle rather than help build it up.  Next we convinced her to help fill the moat with water, and she basked in that task!  She even chased the seagulls and was none too pleased when Daddy made her turn around and come back to our “spot”. 

Manhattan Beach
This is the “why do I have to say cheese when I’m freezing?” smile

Manhattan Beach
Building a moat

Manhattan Beach
Sitting on the sandcastle, and very proud that she succeeded again in destroying one of Daddy’s creations.

Manhattan Beach  Manhattan Beach
Collecting water for the moat

Manhattan Beach  Manhattan Beach
Filling the moat

Manhattan Beach
Burying Elaine and Daddy in sand.  (This is where the evening took a turn for the worst.  Elaine decided to rub her eyes and got sand in them.  She did not like the cold water we squirted in her eyes to clean them out!)

Manhattan Beach
Sandy piggies

Even Nolan enjoyed some sun.  It was a pleasant way to spend the evening.  And I think Elaine is getting swim lessons for her second birthday!

Manhattan BeachNolan in the Kozy Carrier

Manhattan Beach
My kiddos were not happy!

Manhattan Beach
Mommy & Nolan – Nolan’s first trip to the beach

Manhattan Beach
We tried again, but still didn’t come away with a great picture!

Manhattan Beach
We are a family of four!