Saturday, January 30, 2010

Liberty Update

Oh Liberty...she is so unbelievably amazing.  She is so smart, so funny, and so sweet.  Scott and I are are so blessed to be her parents.

We are 75 days into her Kindergarten year.  It has been a very fun and interesting experience educating her at home (follow her homeschool blog  She loves it and so do I.  I can't imagine her being away at school for most of the day and missing out on this precious time with her. 

She has finally come through the phase where she is terrified of everything.  She is still very scared of storms (particularly tornadoes), but who isn't :).  She is gaining more confidence in herself and learning that Scott and I will do our best to protect her.  Beyond that, she is learning to trust God and His ultimate sovereignty in all things.

We have also recently gone through a very difficult stage of tantrums and pushing and testing her limits.  Whew...I am happy to report that this stage seems to be on its way out as well.  Scott and I learned during this time that she is definitely over-indulged and needs a little more structure in her life.  We are working hard on this and it is already paying off.

While both of these phases have definitely been challenging, life with Liberty is always fun and enjoyable.  She is definitely a passionate and sensitive little girl.  This can lead to some pretty stubborn standoffs, but more frequently her sensitivity manifests in sweet gestures of kindness and affection.  She is very "tuned-in" to others and has such a heart to please.

She continues to adore Emory and vice-versa.  She cares for her all the time and mostly without any prompting from me.  She picks out her clothes, gives her toys, plays with her, finds her missing binkies, and tries to make her laugh.  It is so sweet and I absolutely love watching them together.
One of the greatest Liberty moments I have caught on video is below (for those reading on facebook, go to my blog to check it out--its worth it :)!).  She LOVES music.  It doesn't matter what kind of music it is--everything from rock to country.  Recently, she has decided that classical music is her favorite and we rarely listen to anything else.  I captured this video in the car.  She was in her carseat and completely unaware that I was even filming her.  She was lost in her own little world and it is absolutely priceless.  Scott and I are contemplating how we will foster her love of music since neither of us are musically gifted.

Currently her favorite movie is Barbie and the Magic of Pegasus.  Actually, all her Barbie movies are in the top 10 and she owns 9!  I guess 10th place would go to Ratatouille.  She also loves to play Barbies.  She has two "Ken" dolls.  One is named Ken (obviously) and the other she calls John :).  She cracks me up.  Her Ken dolls are always such gentlemen and they treat Barbie so well.  I hope we are teaching her what to look for in her future husband :).

She is also really into cooking in her pretend kitchen and playing video games.  The video games are a recent development.  A few weeks ago she asked that I get out one of our old game systems.  It has all the original nintendo and sega games on it.  We started playing games like Super Mario Bros. and Contra.  Of course, Scott and I just loved be transported back to our childhood and spending the time playing with Liberty was an extra special bonus.  We were all enjoying this new family activity so much that I started contemplating buying a Wii.  However, my cheapness has won over for now and I just ended up getting our old playstation 2 out.  I let her pick out a new game and she chose Lego Indiana Jones.  So, for the past few weeks, Liberty and Scott have been conquering there way through this game (I can't play because I have unbelieveable vertigo and cannot play games where the characters move in multiple directions).  While I have mixed feelings about children spending hours on end playing video games, I have decided that as long as we keep it a family activity that it should be ok--at least for now.

Liberty also continues to enjoy tumbling and cheerleading.  We changed gyms this session and she really likes it.  I am much happier with the quality of the instruction and the atmosphere. 

Currently her favorite food would have to be pizza.  She cannot get enough of it!  She is also drinking gallons of orange juice.  Her food phases crack me up.  I never know from month to month what she will be into.

She loves to be read to.  I cannot wait until she can read herself.  It is one of my favorite things to do and I hope she will share a love of reading as well.

Scott and I love that she is such a big girl.  Not that she is just growing up, but that she is so mature in many ways.  Granted, she definitely has her 5-year-old moments, but she is very articulate, and trustworthy, and she knows her own limits.  We love that we can have conversations with her and that she absorbs what we say.  She is very contemplative and after she thinks on things for a while, she will come back and ask questions.  I love that she is still so innocent.  Her little mind can barely process evil and cruelty.  She truly is the greatest.  I can't wait to see the women she grows up to be!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010


I find myself overwhelmed this morning with a longing to see my Jesus face to face.  One of the most precious gifts God gave me when He took Lilly home was a true an honest longing and anticipation for Heaven.  As Christians I think we often see our eteranal home as the end of our journey rather the beginning of our journey.  The thought of heaven sounds really great and one day we hope to find ourselves there, but we would rather stay earthbound as long as possible.  What I have learned is that there is nothing this world can offer that comes close to what Jesus is preparing for us (John 14:2-3).

I was listening to this song by Chris Tomlin this morning and I captured a vision for Heaven like never before.  My favorite part is at the end when he sings "my faith will be my eyes."  Oh friends, one day we are going to see it!  We are going to stand in front of our Savior!  I  am going to see my little girl standing among the angels singing "Worthy is the Lamb!"  I wish it was today.  Come Lord, we are waiting anxiously!!!!

There's a peace I've come to know
Though my heart and flesh may fail
There's an anchor for my soul
I can say, "it is well"
Jesus has overcome
And the grave is overwhelmed
The victory is won
He is risen from the dead
I will rise when He calls my name
No more sorrow, no more pain
I will rise on eagles' wings
Before my God, fall on my knees
And rise
I will rise
There's a day that's drawing near
When this darkness breaks to light
And the shadows disappear
And my faith shall be my eyes
And I hear the voice of many angels sing, "worthy is the Lamb"
And I hear the cry of every longing heart, "worthy is the Lamb"

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Trip to Texas

Scott sent us away earlier this week so he could get some work done.  We didn't complain too much and were happy to head to my parent's house in Texas for a few days of R&R while Scott put in some long hours.  I was nervous to make the trip solo because Emory has not proven to be a good traveller; however,  we were completely blessed and she was an absolute angel going and coming home!

Our unseasonably warm weather followed us all the way there and it was a least 70 degrees when we arrived.  Liberty commenced playing outside immediately.  This monster jungle gym is the newest addition to my parent's backyard and Liberty loves it.  She spent a good 30 minutes playing Star Wars.  She was Princess Leia, I was Han Solo, and Emory was Yoda :).

Emory didn't mind being cast in the role of Yoda and was perfectly content to play along as long as she got to swing in the process.

While we all enjoyed being outside for a change, it totally backfired when Liberty began to suffer a major allergy attack.  Despite her runny nose and coughing, she was determined to enjoy the warm weather.  Thankfully, Emory and I were not affected by whatever was in the air.

We also made the long trip to Rochester to visit Lilly's grave and decorate her tree for Valentines.  We have gotten in the habit of decorating her tree not just for Christmas, but for any major holiday that happens to be coming up.  Obviously, we don't get to do this often since we live so far away, but we love it when we do get to.  On Monday night, my mom and Liberty made Valentines to put on the tree.  It turned out so cute and Liberty had a blast.

I also made a point to take more pictures of the cemetary and surrounding area this time.  I know I've talked about how way out in the middle of nowhere this place is, but I wanted to capture it to really make my point.  So, this is what Rochester, Texas looks like in the winter...

Across the vast expanse of nothing, you can see the giant windmills.  I think they are so beautiful.

Rochester is primarily a farming community.  There are fields as far as the eye can see.  The air is filled with white dust and the sides of the roads are laced with fuzzy white cotton from the recent harvest.

This is the second time Emory has visited her sister's grave.  She looks so much like Lilly.  I'm sad that she will never meet her sister this side of Heaven, but I am storing up memories like this so one day I can tell her all about Lilly and our amazing adventure.

On Wednesday we did absolutely nothing.  We stayed home and just enjoyed relaxing and visting with my parents.  We headed back to OK first thing Thursday morning.  We had a great time and Scott got caught up on work.  Back to our routine on Monday.

Monday, January 11, 2010

I is for Insect

Memory Work
"I am a wise child, so I work hard."

Bible Verses
Proverbs 6:6-9
Proverbs 10:4-5
Colossians 3:23-24

So, we are back up and running after the holidays.  I have to admit that I really enjoyed lounging around and not doing lesson plans!  We started back up with a unit on insects.  I wish that this unit could have been done in the spring.  It would have made studing bugs so much easier.  Despite not being able to get outside much, we managed to study ants by creating out own Ant Hill.  This has been so much fun and I think I have enjoyed it as much as Liberty.  We bought and Ant Hill and ordered the ants.  They came in the mail and we put them in our Ant Hill.  I was a little skeptical at first because half the ants were dead when they arrived and the rest looked like they might not make it through the night.  While the first 24 hours were slow, our ants were soon busy busy busy building their tunnels.  We loved coming in from running errands or waking up in morning to see how much they had gotten done while we were away.  They are such hard workers and if you watch closely you can see that each one has a specific job.  Some of our ants dug tunnels, others gathered the sand from the digging and formed piles, some buried the dead ants, and others tended to the food we put in there.  It was fascinating to watch.  We are just sad that they don't live very long.   If you are studying insects and Ant Hill is a must!

Liberty is rapidly learning how to read.  We are still in the "sounding things out" phase, but she is gradually adding more and more words that she recognizes by sight.  I must admit that the process of teaching Liberty to read can be very frustrating and challenging.  I have to constantly remind myself not to push too hard.  I definitely don't want her to hate reading, especially when I love it so much.

One of our projects this week was to paint a rock to look like a ladybug.  It turned out so cute and Liberty loved it.  This a great project for your little ones too!

Well, that is all we managed to get done our first week back from vacation.  Maybe this week will be more productive.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Six months old!

I feel like these updates are coming closer and closer together!  The picture to the left is completely characteristic of my 6-month-old Emory.  She is unbelieveably sweet and happy.  I can't imagine what my days would be like without her and we have only had her for such a short time.  She's is growing so quickly and doing new and fun things everyday.  I'm going to try to be very thourough with this update.

She is still nursing every 3-4 hours.  She is very consistent and wakes up every night at 2 a.m. and 6 a.m. to eat.  I guess that would mean she is only eating once at night, but I don't get up a 6 a.m. so it still seems like twice a night to me :)!  We have added cereal and bananas to her diet.  She is indifferent to both.  She opens her mouth for the very first bite and then I basically have to shove the rest in because she loses interest.  I am feeding her solid foods at lunch and at her last meal before bed.  I am also making all the baby food this time around.  I've never done it before, but since I stay at home, I don't think it should be that big a deal.  Plus it should save us a little money :).

First bite of bananas

She is getting close to taking only two naps a day.  The problem is that she doesn't want to sleep for long periods of time.  She only wants to sleep for 20-30 minutes at a time, which equals several little naps throughout the day.  She starts getting really sleepy around 7-8 p.m.  I wish I could just put her to bed then, but inevitably she just wakes up.  Then after taking a late 30 minute nap, she is up until 10.  Maybe now that the holidays are over and we will be going back to bed at a decent hour, she will get on a good nighttime routine as well.  At night she sleeps in a Sleep Sack which she really likes.  She still likes to sleep with a blankie although she doesn't require it.  If she does use it, I take it away after she falls asleep.

Physical Development:
I have no idea what she weighs.  Probably in the neighborhood of 17-18 pounds.  Her 6 month WCC is on Monday and I am really anxious to find out how much she has grown.  She is transitioning out of her 3-6 months clothes and into her 6-9 month clothes.  Her little legs and cheeks are so fat.  I just love it!

Motor Development:
She is has made so much progress in this area.  She can now sit by herself for long periods of time.  It is so much fun.  Now she can play in the floor or her in her pack-n-play and she can sit up in the grocery basket and highchairs!  To celebrate her new abilities she got a shopping cart/highchair cover for Christmas.

sitting in the floor, highchair at the Grand House, and grocery shopping!

She is still only rolling over from her stomach to her back.  She is showing no interest in rolling the other direction and recently she has decided she is too fat to even roll from her stomach.  Granted, she doesn't get much tummy time.  I am the worst about doing intentional tummy time.  Primarily because we have all wood floors and because she HATES it.  She get hysterical which I can't stand.  She can now grab toys and bring them to her.  Typically if she can get a hold of it, it goes directly into her mouth.  She loves holding small, light things like her little plastic spoons.

Emotional/Cognitive Development:
She has started to show signs of anxiety when strangers or people she hasn't seen in awhile want to hold her.  She doen't mind if they talk to her as long as she in the comfort of her mommy's arms.  She has also starting acting shy when Scott plays with her.  He talks to her and aggrevates her and she will bury her head in my chest.  So cute!  She has also start reaching for me when I go to pick her up or take her from someone else.  This is absolutely the best thing ever.  It makes me feel so special :)!

Just for fun:
One of my favorite things lately is her voice.  She is getting very vocal and at times gets quite loud.  This is especially funny when she chooses to exercise her vocal chords in public.  Check out the video below.  I think she was totally excited about watching Star Wars (you can hear it in the background).  If you are reading this post on facebook, go to my blog to see the video.

Liberty is still the only one who can make her laugh on demand.  This is such a treat.  They love each other so much!

One of her favorite activities is still swinging.  I just wonder how long this will last.  My parents bought her a new swing for Christmas.  It goes up to 40 pounds and converts into a rocking chair when they outgrow the swing.  She LOVES it!

Her smile is still the best thing I have ever seen.  I can't get enough of it!  She is such a joy and we are so very much in love with her.