Monday, January 26, 2009

Taxes

Besides death, they say it's the only thing you can't avoid. I did an estimate on our taxes last week as a reality check, and was disappointed to discover the minute refund we'd be getting (much less than I anticipated). I was just waiting for all of the tax documents to come in the mail so I could file and get our chump change back. However, I was super excited when I got my W-2 in the mail today! I miscalculated my income, so I quickly did another estimate...we'll be getting about what I hoped we would! And next year, we'll get to have another deduction for Baby #2!! Praise God for kids!

On another note, I'll be doing a few tax returns this tax season to earn a little extra money. Please let me know if you'd like some help with yours!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Hairy Baby

I had heartburn so bad last night, I thought I was going to be sick. I haven't even laid down yet tonight and the heartburn is starting. Maybe it's because I didn't drink milk with dinner last night or tonight, but I think this baby is going to have a lot of hair like Adon did.

Friday, January 23, 2009

My Next Sewing Project


I have a couple of patterns for skirts I wanted to make and had even bought some fabric (ok, so AB bought the fabric) to make them. However, with my increasing belly, I can't take my measurements in order to make them. While I was feeding Adon this evening, I found this really cool sewing project on my igoogle How To of the Day. Every baby needs warm, cozy, soft shoes! After a quick browse, I thought they were simple enough that even I could make them. Actually, I'm pretty excited about them. If they turn out well enough, they may become the new gift of choice at baby showers.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

French Toast

Jer was off work today, so I made french toast to use up some homemade cinnamon raisin bread. It made me think of Donna, because everytime she comes to visit, we get cinnamon bread from the bakery and make french toast. We usually make the whole loaf and freeze the leftovers (to be put in the toaster for a quick breakfast). However, since the slices of homemade bread are so much bigger, we only got 5 pieces before the dipping liquid was gone. I think my dad's cinnamon bread makes much better french toast!

Monday, January 19, 2009

Why do groceries cost so stinking much?

In these tough economic times, we're always looking for ways to cut back and cut corners. We're especially trying to cut back on groceries, as prices continue to rise. In an effort to do that, I'm trying to only grocery shop once a month. This saves me time and only gives me one opportunity for impulse spending (instead of two or three). We use a two-week menu (for weeknights) and double it to go grocery shopping. We usually have leftovers on the weekends, but I'll get a few extra things at the store to make quick meals in case there aren't enough leftovers.

To further save money, I've just finished going through our menu and the grocery receipts from my last shopping trip to determine how much each meal will cost. Right now, they range from $1/serving (red beans and rice w/ sausage) to $3.67/serving (fajitas). I'm on a mission to find cheaper meals (that are still somewhat healthy). Please let me know if you have any ideas for cheap meals OR what your family does to cut down on grocery spending. Thanks!

Sunday, January 18, 2009

November in Review

Just a quick side note (3/15/09) - I can't believe how much Adon has grown and progressed since we took these pictures! It's hard to believe he's almost 1!!!

November - Adon is really getting around now. From the way he is pulling himself up, we think he'll be walking by Thanksgiving. He's discovered Max and is so fascinated with his crate.


On the 12th, I turned 28. Jer was working and then had school, so it was an uneventful day. However, he more than made up for it over the weekend. He got me beautiful flowers (including lilies, one of my favorites) and made a wonderful steak dinner. My mom made my favorite cake, Oreo-mint with an angel on top. And we had chalupa (another favorite) for our family birthday dinner, where we celebrated my birthday and Aunt Barb's (Nov. 11th). Actually, I was almost born on AB's birthday. I arrived at 1:16 a.m. on the 12th. My mom saved the highchair we used for the grandbabies. We had to rig it to keep Adon from sliding out of it, but he enjoyed himself nonetheless.

We have been a little slow to keep up with Adon's formal pictures. We actually did try to get 6 month pics taken, but with our photographer's schedule and Kari's wedding, they turned out to be 7 1/2 month pics. He's as cute as ever, and the most photogenic kid ever! Kudos to Barry Davis for the great pics. The link for the pics is just a sample of the ones taken...it would have taken an eternity to upload all of them and probably would have crashed our computer. Below are a few of our absolute favorites.


We dedicated Adon to the Lord and vowed to raise him in accordance with the Word of God. Jer spoke/prophesied over Adon as he explained to the congregation the meaning of his name...Adon - Lord/Ruler, Jeremiah - Uplifted by God. We firmly believe Adon will be a mighty ruler anointed by God to do great and mighty things!

Afterwards, we had a family lunch at the deli.





Adon started teething in November. He really liked gnawing on frozen grapes in this teether. However, we had to make sure he was sitting down with it since the grapes would stain anything they touched (or anything the juice touched when Adon shook it!).



We celebrated Thanksgiving with my family on Thanksgiving. Adon had sweet potatoes (a special one made just for him by Grammy) and cheerios for his Thanksgiving dinner. However, he was so tired, he fell asleep in the high chair while he was eating.




We spent the rest of our Thanksgiving weekend in Illinois with J's family. Adon is now big enough to play with the tractors!


For a little bit more about our Thanksgiving, head over here. However, it's not much more since I started the post in Illinois shortly after it happened, but because it takes so long to upload pictures there, I put it off til we got home...and then it never got finished.

Appliances are going, going, almost gone.

The appliances I removed from our pantry during my spring cleaning are going fast. I'm eager to get them ALL off of our kitchen floor so I no longer have to walk around them. However, Adon has enjoyed his temporary drum set. The remaining items are:
  • Smoothie maker (we have a newer/better one)
  • Chopper (ok, ok...this one came from the Target $1 section. I couldn't pass it up, but have never used it)
  • 4-cup coffee maker (this was inherited, but still works great...we just drink more coffee than this little guy makes)
  • Small saucepan w/ a cool venting lid (running out of storage space and we have other saucepans that are part of a set)
Please let me know if you're interested and we'll make arrangements to get them to you.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Spring Cleaning?

I got a spurt of energy this morning and attacked our second pantry...which is actually a hole in the wall with some shelves which we mostly use for storing appliances. In the three and a half years of owning the house, we have shoved so much stuff in there that it was more of a pain to get anything out than it was worth. I should have taken a before picture, but I didn't (and wasn't about to put the mess back once it was out). So here is the end result. A usable storage place where minimal (if any) items need to be moved to access everything, all like kind items (paper plates, cups, travel mugs, etc.) are gathered together, most-used items are on shelves I can reach, and there is plenty of space between things so stuff doesn't randomly attack you as you try to figure out just where the appliance is that you need. Adon did a great job entertaining himself while I worked. He played with his Wash-N-Go (car-matching magnet game), pulled almost all of the tupperware out of its cabinet, and tried several times to get into the trash can to find out what I was getting rid of. Without any further ado...my pantry.


Here is what has been removed from the pantry. Things we no longer (or have never!) used. We're looking for good homes for these lovely (some are new, some are very loved) gadgets. Please let us know if you can use them (we won't even charge you for these valuables!) or we'll include them in our yearly donation to the Goodwill or, better yet, save them for White Elephant gifts for next year!


Included are:
  • Electric wok (bowl is slighly warped and lit doens't fit right, but it's still usable)
  • Smoothie maker (we have a newer/better one)
  • Juicer (never used, still in its original packaging)
  • Chopper (ok, ok...this one came from the Target $1 section. I couldn't pass it up, but have never used it)
  • 4-cup coffee maker (this was inherited, but still works great...we just drink more coffee than this little guy makes)
  • Toaster (no idea on the condition, if you're interested, I'll test it out)
  • Small saucepan w/ a cool venting lid (running out of storage space and we have other saucepans that are part of a set)
  • George Foreman juice catching trays (we actually have the Foreman down in the basement and would be glad to donate to a loving home...we got a cooler one (aka w/ removable plates) to replace it)

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

October in Review

Adon is beginning to recognize Grammy and Grampy and LOVES their snuggles!





Adon got more sturdy at sitting up and began to pull himself up on anything he could...including the box my new sewing machine came in. Jer got the sewing machine (along with his mom and Happy) for my birthday/anniversary. I was so surprised. It was the perfect gift!! Aunt Barb helped me learn how to read a pattern and sew my first few projects.





We celebrated our second wedding anniversary on October 15th. My mom made a little cake with our monogram on it for us, and J got these beautiful flowers for me.





Adon got his first taste of cereal. We tried to wait as long as we could to start him on food, so I would be home full time and have plenty of time for all the mess that might be made! It was so fun to watch J feed him.



J stopped by home while he was in the neighborhood while he was working one day. He loved showing Adon the ambulance he drives.



Because big boy can pull himself up now, he thinks nap time is play time.



We quit using the baby bathtub in the kitchen sink when Adon started grabbing the hot water handle. We quit using the baby bathtub in the regular bathtub when it got too hard to hold a slippery baby still. So, Adon had his first big boy bath without the baby bathtub.



Adon also celebrated his first Pumpkin Day! My first project with my new sewing machine was Adon's costume. For my first attempt, I'd have to say it turned out pretty well. It kept him much warmer than needed, since we had an incredibly warm day to go Trunk or Treating.





And lastly, we captured a few pics of Adon snuggling in his sleep...on of Daddy and one of his womb-bear. This year was rough on all of us. With Jer being gone so much for work and school, days would go by that he wouldn't see Adon. He'd leave before Adon woke up and come home long after Adon went to sleep. The times Jer was home and Adon was awake were cherished, and my boys snuggled.




September in Review

We spent the long Labor Day weekend in Bloomington with J's family. We celebrated Bradley and Ashlin's birthdays (our niece and nephew), Adon rode on the tractors with PaPa, and Adon went to his first parade. Toluca (where Happy lives) has a big Labor Day festival every year, complete with carnival rides and a parade. Fire trucks from all over come to ride in the parade. We were excited for Adon to see them up close, but he was petrified when they honked the horns and blared the sirens. I had to take him back to Happy's house for the rest of the parade.



Zac and Sarah got married and we enjoyed visiting with the Romers while they were here for the wedding.



video

Adon likes watching Daddy play the XBOX 360...especially Madden '09 football. Adon also like the remotes and controllers and tries to play with the ones Daddy is using, so we dedicated one of the controllers to Adon. Now when Daddy plays, Adon gets to use his special controller (without any batteries) and play with Daddy.



Adon is learning to help with chores already! He holds the laundry in the laundry basket when we take it up and downstairs.



We celebrated Adon's half-birthday when he turned the big 6 months!


(These two are among my favorite pics of Adon!!)




And some other random shots...

In the first one, Adon pulled his blanket on top of himself and fell asleep.

Heartburn

With Adon, I started getting heartburn really bad around 18 weeks. It pretty much stayed with me the remainder of the pregnancy. I could avoid the foods that triggered it (tomatoes, caffeine, peppers, etc.) and make sure I didn't go to bed for several hours after I ate, but it still showed up.

I ate a bowl of chili yesterday for lunch...and had heartburn all afternoon and evening. I can't help but wonder if it was an isolated incident or if the thus far perfect pregnancy will no longer be perfect. I'm not complaining if I do have it. I've been so grateful to not have had any morning sickness or discomfort or anything else uncomfortable for the first 16 weeks. In fact, there are some days I have to remind myself that I'm pregnant, because I definitely don't feel like it. It is reassuring to hear the baby's heartbeat at every doctor's appointment...just so I know I'm not dreaming it up. :o)

Pictures are almost uploaded!! I'm into January of 2009!!! Once their done, I hope to get some posted...hopefully while Adon's taking a nap!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Back Home

We made it back home safely. We enjoyed our R&R. I got some paperwork/research done and finished Adon's baby blanket. However, it's always nice to come back home.

I'm working on uploading some pics, so hopefully I'll be able to post some monthly reviews with pics soon. It looks like the last time I did that was August, so I have some work to do.

In the meantime, Adon and Daddy shared Vanilla Wafers (before breakfast) this morning!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

A Little R & R

This is the first time Jer has had some time off of work and didn't have to do clinicals!! We're up in Bloomington celebrating Christmas with his family and enjoying the grandparents playing with Adon and all of the yummy food! I did bring a few projects to work on, but they're fun projects that have been put on the back burner. I'm working on Adon's baby book and a blanket for his new carseat. The blanket for his old carseat is too little now. But boy have I really enjoyed just resting!

Jeremy's mom is such a great hostess! We always have great food and rarely go home with any laundry to do!

Before we left for Bloomington, Grampy (my dad) gave Adon his first cookie! Grampy's been asking for a long time, "Can I give him a cookie?" My typical response has been, "He doesn't even have teeth yet!" However, with teeth numbers 3 and 4 coming in, I couldn't use that excuse any more. I think Grampy enjoyed giving him the cookie as much as Adon enjoyed eating it! It was just a small butter cookie, but he put it as far in his mouth as it would go and used his little teeth to break off what was in his mouth. It was soooo cute when his cheeks were stuffed with cookie!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Small News

Jer and I have been asked to teach/disciple a Crown Financial ministries class at church. I'm so excited about it! I taught the youth a simpler version when I was in college. It's funny that this offer comes at a time when we're financially most in need of some teaching ourselves! God always gets us to a point we quit trying to survive on our own and rely completely on Him. I think we're about there, as we're struggling to make it on one income. However, God has promised that He will always provide, so we aren't worried.

Also, we got Adon a big boy carseat tonight. We were very blessed by Happy's (J's Grandpa) generosity! Shopping for carseats is such a challenge...trying to get just the right one. We didn't get the one we set out to get, because there were soooo many to look at! It's a good thing we got one. I knew Adon wasn't anywhere close to the weight limit on the pumpkin seat carseat, but asked the lady at the store about the height limit on it. Don't you know it's 29 inches. The same height Adon measured at his 9 month checkup a couple of weeks ago. Guess we'll have to figure out how to get it in our cars tomorrow...before our trip to Bloomington. Isn't it just like God to provide exactly what we need?

BTW - it's been sooooo nice to have J home for dinner every night this week! I'm really glad school is over!

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Breathing

Don't take it for granted...Adon and I have had colds since last Friday and neither of us can breathe very well. Actually this is my second cold. The first one last two miserable weeks. I had a nice one week reprieve before being attacked by this second cold. It's awful not being able to breathe through your nose...your lips get chapped, your mouth gets dry, your throat gets sore, and you feel as if your nose is taking over your head. It's especially bad when you sleep, you can't sniff the snot back it because you're all clogged up and so it just drips all night. You toss and turn hoping one position will provide some slight relief. On top of all that, I can only take Tylenol...

We've moved Adon back into our room for sleeping so he and I can share the humidifier. I've been putting saline drops in his nose...per the pediatrician's recommendation...several times a day. They seem to be helping. Last night he only woke up once, and I actually slept pretty well. I remember waking up once in the night and sat up in bed and thought to myself...hey, I can breathe!! Must have been that second dose of Tylenol Cold J made me take right before bed!

There is one bonus...Adon took a 4 hour nap yesterday!!! He's been sleeping for two and a half hours so far this morning. Hooray for time to do chores!! Actually, my dad came over for lunch and a game of Sequence yesterday and kept me company. He also used his expertise and helped me make soft pretzels. Mmmmm........

Ok, guess I should get back to work while Adon's still sleeping...although a nap sounds really good, too.