How to catch a gorilla!

First, you catch him in a trap with mommy's robe tie.

Then, when he's secure, you send your brother to attack him.

Once the gorilla is good and tired from fighting your brother, you jump on his back and tie him down.

Not a day goes by that the kids don't ask daddy to play gorilla with them.  
This started months ago, and it's still going strong.  
I seriously sit and laugh as I watch them all frolic and play.
I'm glad my kids have a daddy that is willing to get on the floor every night and interact with his kids.
He's an amazing father!


Preparing for Baby

As most of you know, we are in the process of finishing our basement so the two older kids can sleep down there and the new baby can have the nursery down the hall from my room.  
All of our energy and brain power has gone into getting this project finished. My plan was to wait until it was complete to do anything related to the baby, but since I have less than 7 weeks until our little one arrives... I better get started.

I laundered a few clothing items that I know the baby can wear when he/she comes home.  It was difficult because we don't know what IT is, and the weather for this baby is going to be hot as opposed to cool/cold like it was when my other two kids were born.  At least there will be something for me to pull out of the drawer and put on the baby.

I washed and prepared my cloth diapers for the baby.  I still need quite a few more diapers since I will be diapering our baby in cloth pretty much from the beginning.  Newborns go through so many diapers!
I'm hoping I can get a few more before the baby comes.  Until then, I'm loving looking at all the sweetness in the diaper drawer.  They are so stinking soft and comfy feeling.

We have so many friends who are due to have babies within six months after we deliver.  I am trying to get gifts made and ready to go so I don't have to worry about that after baby3 arrives.  One of our friends is going to have a boy in November, so I knit him a hat to wear.  The yarn is soft and cuddly.  Perfect for a new baby. 

I have so much more to do, but for now I'm feeling good with getting those few things accomplished. 
I still have to wash carseat covers, baby swing covers, and a number of other things.  
I will get it done... I just hope I'm not exhausted when the baby decides to arrive.

I can't wait!!!!


Baby Update {32 weeks}

Today I reach the 32 week mark... which means I have 7 more weeks (at the most) until delivery day.  There are days when I feel like it's going by so fast, but then the next moment feels like it's taking an eternity to get this little one cooked and in my arms. 

I had an ultrasound done at 30 weeks and the baby was measuring 30 weeks to the day, so we're right on track.  It looked so cute and I could hardly contain myself.  I kept smiling and almost giggled when I would see his/her little face.  

*The baby still moves like a crazy baby.  It seems like it's moving a lot at night when I'm trying to rest, but I'm enjoying it.
*I haven't gained any more weight, so Mark has limited the walking I am doing.  With my gestational diabetes and the strict diet I am on, he thinks that I need to reserve all my calories for the baby and not expend them by walking and sweating them out.  I'm trying to honor his request because it is his baby, too, and I haven't been walking these past two weeks.  Total weight gain: 10 lbs
*The baby hiccups several times a day.  
*I think the baby is still rolling around in there, because sometimes I feel tiny, hand-like movements down low, and then other times I feel them up high.  I'm hoping in the next few weeks he/she settles into the head down position and stays put for the duration.
*I haven't had much heartburn so far... yippee!!!
*My back and hips hurt off and on and I have been to the chiropractor once.  I'd really like to go several more times to get all aligned for delivery.

I think that is about all that has changed.  I go to the doctor again tomorrow to see what's going on with the little one.  I get tired of setting appts. and arranging childcare (thanks gammy and gamps) for the older kids, but I know that it's important to keep tabs on my body and the baby.  Not too much longer and I will have a baby picture along with a name posted on here.  Excited!!!!


Baby Mobile {DIY}

Remember this paper I showed you in a previous post?  

Well, I made it into a baby mobile.  I loved the one I found on Pinterest and decided that was what I wanted to make for the baby.  It is hanging off of the fan in the nursery right now, but will soon be put in place when the big kids get moved out of the room.  We also need to paint the pink in the room a soft white.

I love the colors and geometric-ness (totally not a word- I know) that is has.

I can't wait to get it fastened to the ceiling and hanging over the crib.  It will look so sweet.


This is the link I used to make my mobile.


Baby Room Decor

Now that I've narrowed down the color scheme I'm wanting the baby's room to be, I'm on to finding the finishing details.  Am I going to have time to complete it before baby arrives?  That, I am pretty sure is a negative, but never the less I'm going to search for inspiration.  

This is my photo inspiration for the room.  I love the airy, bright feel it has while also being soothing. 
It is also gender neutral which is a must since we don't know what we're having (although I have had 5 dreams and the baby was the same gender in each dream... we'll see.)

Baby room

I'm really wanting the room to be simple with splashes of color and texture here and there.  These are some of my top contenders to help me accomplish the look I'm going for.  You can see all my baby room ideas on my Pinterest board.  


I love these pinwheel spheres.  They are unique and colorful without being obnoxious.  
wall decor

I'm totally smitten by all the adorable baby buntings that are out there.  This one is gender neutral and simple.
adorable nursery with bunting

How fun is this mobile?  I saw it and absolutely loved how different it was from all the other mobiles I've seen.
Unique mobiles for nursery

And, then there's this precious mobile.  I love pinwheels and I this this would look so lovely hanging over a crib.  I could easily fall asleep watching this spin... not that I'm the one that will be in the crib, but you know what I mean.
pinwheel mobile for nursery

I hope y'all have a great day!  We're staying home doing schoolwork, playing with toys, and trying to get prepared for our little one to arrive in 9 weeks!!!  It's all so overwhelming and exciting at the same time.


Whole Wheat Soft Pretzels

I have been milling my own wheat with my WonderMill for about six months now.  I can't say enough how much I love that thing.  For Christmas, my parents gave me a Bosch mixer that is amazing and I don't know how I ever lived without it.  

Since receiving my grain mill, I have been doing my baking using freshly milled wheat... so yummy!!!
I use my wheat for breads, pancakes, muffins, pizza crust, yummy treats, and now pretzels.

I made about 22 pretzels this week and they were so yummy.  They were soft and chewy and full of nutritious goodness.  Now, were they low-fat??? No.  But, they had no preservatives, and had all the benefits of whole grains.  I can't even begin to tell you how much better fresh wheat is for you.  It would take me forever and I won't get on that soapbox.  

Laura, from Heavenly Homemakers, has a ton of whole wheat recipes that you should check out if you are interested in making healthier choices for your family.  



recipe from Heavenly Homemakers...

1 c. water
2 T. yeast
2 t. honey
2 1/2 cups milk
1 stick butter
1/2 cup honey
4 t. salt
8 cups whole wheat flour (more if necessary)
In a large bowl, mix 1 cup very warm water, 2 T. yeast and 2 t. honey.  Stir this together and kind of mush the yeast around.  Let this sit for a few minutes while you do the next step.
Melt a stick of butter in a large saucepan.
Add 1/2 cup honey, 4 t. salt and 2 1/2 cups of milk.  Heat this to 120 degrees.
Pour milk mixture into yeast mixture and stir.
Stir in 8 cups of flour, 2 cups at a time. (add more if you need it)
Knead the dough for 5-10 minutes.
Put it into a bowl, cover it and let it rise for 1-1 1/2 hours.
Pull it out of the bowl and knead it a few times to get the air out.  
Pull a ball of dough, about the size of your fist off and get ready to make your very first pretzel! 
Roll it into a long snake. And twist it into a pretzel shape.
After you shape each pretzel, put them on a cookie sheet about an inch apart. 
 Bake for 20 minutes at 350 degrees.
Melt a stick of butter in a saucepan.
Right when you take the pretzels out of the oven, coat them with butter. 
Then sprinkle salt over them.  I made some with salt and others with a cinnamon/sugar mixture.
These really were easy for me to make and so rewarding.  

Tasty Tuesday
Tempt My Tummy Tuesday
Tuesdays at the Table
Tuesday Night Supper Club
Tatertots & Jello

Life As We Know It...

Liam and Ella play "house" quite often.  Liam is the baby, Ella is the mommy, and I'm the pregnant Grandma.  
Lucky me!!!

I heard her singing to her "baby" the other day and telling him to go to sleep.
This is how I found them. 

 I'm pretty sure no matter how cute that little face is, it's not supposed to be in the doll bed.
I believe I read somewhere that 35 pound little monkeys were to remain outside of the doll bed.

 But, I didn't want to interrupt their fun.
I love watching them play together and I really couldn't care less if the bed broke while they were enjoying one another's company.

I'm also sure I can buy another one if need be.




I love when Mark does sweet things for no reason at all.  He's brought me flowers several times in the last few months for no reason... just to show me that he was thinking of me.

Normally it is a mixed arrangement, but this time it was roses.  
I got red and white roses...

Ella got pink roses.  He's even showing her how a husband should treat his wife.  

It might have been easy for him to swing by and pick up some flowers, but it still makes an impact on how I feel.  He could just have easily drove past the flower shop and decided that it wasn't a big deal to make me feel special.  But, he didn't... he chose to take a few moments to get something that would bring me joy.

I really appreciate him and the husband he is to me.


Paper Inspiration

Paper... aren't these such sweet shades of color?

I have something planned for all these little circles.  I can't wait to show you the final product.  
I have been tracing, cutting, and folding like a mad woman.  
It will be worth it in the end... I hope. 


Life As We Know It

We have been spending a lot of time at home lately.  With Mark and me putting time into finishing the basement (as of right now, we only have two finished bedrooms... we need more for our family of five), there hasn't been much time leftover to go do things during the day.

I am so blessed that my kids love each other.  They don't need to have play dates all the time... they play with one another.  I know it might not always be this way, but I pray that they always enjoy and love one another.  I think prayer and how I teach them to interact with each other will really impact that relationship.

Not only do we have a basement to finish (as if that weren't enough), but I have a ton of freezer cooking to do and newborn items to wash before this little one makes his/her debut.  I can't even make a list or I might go crazy... one day at a time.


Expecting Sister-in-laws

My sister-in-law (Mark's brother's wife) and I are both expecting within a month of one another.  We decided since I'm really showing now that we needed to get a picture of our bumps.  It's interesting to see how differently we carry our little ones.  Although, keep in mind that I have over eight pound babies and she has six/seven pound babies.  Either way, they are cute and oh, so easy to love.

Mark wanted to get an "over the belly shot".  He thinks he's some sort of photo genius.  I'll just let him think that. 

Hopefully, I will have some basement photos to show you soon.  We are in the process of painting doors, sanding and painting trim, and putting the finishing touches on the walls (can you say... Man, you have a lot left to do?).  None of that seems photo worthy, so I'll show you when the process is a little further along.  Less than ten weeks before the baby arrives!!!!  Eek!


Memorial Day

Memorial Day tradition:

Visit Grandpa Tommy and "decorate" his stone with sticks, rocks, junk, and dead flowers/weeds.  

Play outside...
this year we made it a water afternoon.  The kids splashed in the giant aquatic center pool, slid on the slip and slide, and got shot by Mark with the water gun. 

I decided I needed to have a pic with my bump for archiving purposes.  I refuse to buy a maternity suit, so I'm constantly tugging at my tankini top (sorta along the lines of Gus on Cinderella, whose top kept rolling up to his chin because it didn't fit his rather plump belly... but, the mouse made it work and so will I!), but I'm going to pocket the $50 I would spend on a new suit and just suck it up.

BBQ... I didn't think you needed a picture of our traditional hamburgers and hot dogs... use your imagination, folks.


Zoo Trip

Over Memorial weekend we hauled it to the Omaha Zoo to check out the exotic animals.  I have been walking about ten miles/week for the last several months and I'm glad I have.  Six hours of straight walking and standing on concrete can really take a toll on a pregger's body.  I can't imagine how I would've felt the next day had I not been walking all this time. 

Ella's favorite animal was the penguin.  She really likes the Happy Feet movie, so I think that contributed to her enjoyment of this exhibit.  They really are cute (and weird) looking creatures.

Liam {loves} gorillas.  Mark often chases the kids around the house "ooo, ooo-ing" like a gorilla as they scream and hide.  Liam was glued to the baby gorilla and its mommy.  Once the gorillas moved, he would say "potty" and get scared.  

I love getting pics of Mark with the kids.  I think with Mark's dad being sick and dying has contributed to that fact.  I want the kids to always have pictures of just them and their daddy.

This was toward the end of our zoo trip.  We were tired and ready to eat by this point, but we still had the cats to go look at.

Zoos are always a fun day trip to take with the family.  It's also good exercise.