Monday, December 27, 2010

Christmas {2010}

The Milles Christmas in pictures {with brief captions}.

Decorating Jesus's birthday cake {with a few sprinkles}

Presents {waiting to be opened}

Using the long-desired telescope {to spy on the neighbors}

Being absolutely adorable {while sporting an ear infection}

Riding in the Cozy Coup {& opening presents, drinking milk and resting in the Coup as well}

Riding her bike {not sure how she became big enough}

We had a blessed, amazing Christmas.
Praise God for giving us his Only Son, who of which we celebrate this great day!

Friday, December 24, 2010


One of my favorite Christmas songs is Mark Lowry's "Mary, Did You Know?"

With all the anticipation of Christmas and our own hard work in making sure that Christmas is really about the celebration of Jesus's birthday---and not a generous, jolly ol' elf...Bethany wanted to dress up to be Mary.  

She's a pretty adorable Mary, if I do say so myself.

Anyway, back to my original point. Have you heard that song.  I think being a mother it brings a totally different perspective to the whole Jesus's birthday thing.  I now think about Christmas through the Mommy Lens.  Do you have a Mommy lens? If not...all you do is think through it from Mary's perspective. 

 Sure she knew she was blessed with Son of God.  But my heart breaks when I think about the end of Jesus's life. Did Mary know about THAT from the get-go?  Did she realize just how miraculous and significant of an event was taking place & that her whole life has completely changed directions.  I know that I, for one, tend to underplay events in life & not truly realize their significance until time has passed and I am an outsider looking back. 

Then I wonder, how much did she anticipate the end of Jesus's life. Was she dwelling on it (like, ahem, I know some people might).  Did she cry for him? Did she worry for him? Did she lose sleep at night knowing the inevitable?

For being such a joyous and emotional event....just how much did Mary consider when she as she was holding the brand new baby Messiah?
I am grateful for Mary.  What a super strong woman....having been so young & yet so instrumental in the salvation of billions of people.
(btw...I am sure the REAL Mary never dragged her baby brother around by his arms...ahem...we certainly would never let this Mary do it either...)

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Bethany There was a Lil' Baby

This weekend, Bethany and the whole Sunbeams choir at church treated the 9:30 service with an awesome performance of "There was a Little Baby". Bethany did fantastic, as usual. Here is a video of her performance.

If this doesn't plaster a freakishly large smile on your face...I am not sure if anything ever could.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

sibiling differences: play-doh style

 Who know getting out the play-doh tub could provide major insights to your children.  While both kids were entertained for a good 15 minutes with the arrival of the doh.

But there were some pretty significant differences between the two of the lil' goobers....

 As with all her work, Bethany took her play-doh business rather seriously.  Making sure to use the proper tool that would optimize her creation process.

She then proudly displayed her creation.

 Owen....on the other hand...loved the play-doh containers.

 He loved the play-doh tools...
I am pretty sure that he is the only kid in the world that couldn't stand playing with the play-doh itself.  This kid surely has me puzzled! 

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Simple Parenting Mistake Solved

Parenting Mistake # 2,423,424.667:
 We put up all the Christmas decorations, the Christmas tree and sat on Santa's lap all on the same day with the 1 year old and the 3 year old (who still struggles w/ the concept of indicated by the fact that every day in the past is considered yesterday).  The result of these activities: Bethany thought the next day was Christmas & when it turned out NOT to be Christmas, she thought the next day was Christmas. This went on for a few days until.....

Solution to Mistake #  2,423,424.667:

 Along with the wooden nativity scene advent calendar, I made a large and colorful paper-chain to count down the days until Christmas.  We started with 24 days left & after bath time Bethany gets to tear one piece off at a time.  She knows once she gets to rip the last one, the next day will be Jesus's birthday.  She loves getting to rip one off each day & counting the remaining links.

And sometimes, while she does that, Owen "gets" to eat some non-edible candle decorations, sigh.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Push Over

 So...would you allow

your three-year-old to push the one-year-old
all over the house in a toy stroller? neither...

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Accepting Help

My two kids:

While they tend to often do the same exact things....especially at the exact same time. Whether it is to sit in the same chair, read books on the time-out step (voluntarily, mind you) or climb up the stairs taking "bites" out of the steps along the way (gross!)...they are certainly two-of-a-kind.

So, even though they are so similar at sometimes...there are times where these two goobers couldn't be any more different than night and day themselves. 

Bethany never had and rarely ever does question us when we suggest what is the best choice or what is the best situtation for her.  She typically always allows us to help her to get through her every-day-run-of-the-mill life happenings.  I think, she knows we have her best interests in heart and that we will not lead her astray.  Owen, however, that is a different story.

Couple of days ago, I took the two kiddos to the swimming pool by myself.  All is good. Bethany and Owen love playing in the kiddie section and they just eat up all the interactive spraying & dumping things.   After an hour in this section, we decided to venture off into the big, deep part of the pool.  Owen was donning his "backpack" (the rest of us call it a life jacket) which helps me feel 100% better in regards to his safety.  I carry them both into the deep section and lead them to this underwater bench-like-ledge where they can easily walk and still be above water.  Bethany is a master when it comes to this pool & knows to watch the blue lines on the edge of the ledge. She can see where the ledge ends and the water drops a good 3 more feet. 

Owen...well, he hasn't quite figured out how to navigate that treturous terrain.  I, being the great mother than I am, decided to just guide my son with a nice, loving hand gently holding on to the back of his life vest.  Owen hates this.  He hates the fact that I am ever-so-lightly holding on to him while he is navigating this foreign-to-him territory.  I am a good 3 feet taller than this lil' man. From my perspective, I can see the big picture.  I know where the ledge drops and where he will, for sure, lose his footing and drop into the deep end.  I understand the consequences of not having your head above water.   Owen, though, he doesn't.  He just knows that he is a big boy.  He sees his 3-year-old sister walking on the ledge unassisted and thinks he should be able to do that too.  Regardless of what is ultimately good for him, he squeals and fusses and swats away any of my attempts of assisting him.  He, after all, is a good 19 months old now.  He is a big boy and doesn't need any help from his ol' mama.

I can't help but see some parallels w/ Owen and the pool and Life in general.  Sometimes {all the time, actually} I ask God for help--help to get through something, help to decide something, help to comfort someone.  While I was helping my own son through a watery situation, I wondered to myself, "how often do I squawk and swat away the helping hand of God?"  Sure, I think I know what is best for me.  I, after all, have been here a good 30 years and I've seen a lot.  Perhaps, I do know what is best for me. Why would I need to stop and listen to what God is saying...

Silly isn't it?

Why do people do that? Why do we, being creatures of limited mind, swat away the help of someone all-knowing and all-loving.  Who only what is the best for us?  Who would give the world for us? Does that even make sense?  So while Owen is screaming, at this point, because I insisted on picking him up after he took those last two steps off the ledge and into the deep end; I quietly talked to God and made him a deal...

Not only will I continue to ask for his help...but I will actually start listening and accepting what he has to say...

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Did you know...

My kids are