Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Babies, Grads, and Blessings All

My goodness. Everybody told me about a lot of things to expect about being a grandmother. Things like "your life will never be the same" and "you can't imagine how this little one will capture your heart" and "being a grandparent will change your life". And these things are all true.

But nobody ever told me what a totally exhausting job being a grandma is!

I suppose the fact that little Tyler was born the same week his Auntie Jessica was graduating from high school didn't help. Tyler was born Monday morning and spent his first two days in the neo-natal intensive care unit. So of course I was there every minute I could be. Then a day later, he came home. And of course, I was there every minute I could be. I cooked and cleaned and served my daughter. And I held the baby - a lot. And then my second daughter who lives way on the other side of the country in Boston decided at the very last minute that she absolutely could not stand to not be here with all the big family events happening - so she hopped on a plane and came home!!! And then Andrea had her ultrasound and we were invited to come and find out that our second grandbaby is a girl! Imagine that - we have a grandson and a granddaughter. God is just so good! And then we had a big celebration in our back yard for Jessica on Saturday. And then on Sunday, my baby, graduated from high school. We had a house full of company and we had the most fun. To say we are so proud of her is the biggest understatement of all time. She was given a special award at her graduation - the one called "The Ambassador for Christ Award". This award is given to one girl and one boy from the senior class each year. It was a total surprise to her and to us. And it says so much about her character. During the ceremony the entire class dispersed into the audience and gave flowers and hand written notes of love and appreciation to the people who have played special roles in their lives. It was a very emotional moment and one I will always remember. Looking at this picture you can see what a very blessed mama I am. All week long my heart has just been so full of happiness and blessings and my heart can't contain it all. So often these days it all comes spilling out of my eyes! Tears of happiness and joy.

Now that graduation is over I plan to spend a lot more time with this little guy. He is so sweet I could just eat him with a spoon! He is doing so well considering his difficult start in life. He is still a bit jaundiced but not enough to worry about. He is such a good baby. He never cries. He sleeps well. He nurses well for his mama. And yesterday when I held him, he held his head up all on his own and just looked all around the room.

Did you know that there is a learning curve to grandparenting? We are learning where we fit in and where we don't. It seemed really strange at first to leave our little grandson at the end of the day. After all, we had never had a baby we loved so much before that we left in someone else's care! Even it is was with our daughter and son in law. It just seemed odd to walk away and leave him. We thought perhaps we could share him - you know - we could take him home part of the time and his parents could come and visit! LOL! But alas, it doesn't work that way. So we love him and kiss him and snuggle him as much as we can - and then we leave him with his very capable and very loving mama and daddy. And we go home and talk about how amazing he is and how much he looks like us and how good he is! And we calculate when we can go see him again without being considered nuisances!

Here are some pictures of his nursery. We painted the walls in yellow stripes. I made the crib layette for Tyler. It was so fun to do. I even made the sheets for the crib - which turned out to be surprisingly easy.

It's kind of funny though. We spent so much time preparing his nursery - but he hasn't spent a moment in there! He is held almost all the time!

I want to say thank you to all of you who have posted lovely comments of congratulations. I have been behind in my blogging - but I intend to get around a visit all of you soon. As soon as life settles down a bit. I'm hoping that it will anyway. And I may even have something to blog about that doesn't contain baby news. But you probably don't want to take that to the bank!

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Our Little Man

Here are two very proud and very tired grandparents holding their little man for the first time.
And here are a very proud and very tired mommy and daddy showing off their little man. They don't look proud or anything.

And here is the little man all comfy and cozy under his warm light. Keep praying for him. He is in the neo-natal intensive care unit. He had a pretty traumatic birth and his blood pressure and blood sugar are all out of whack. He's going to be okay - but he won't be able to come home just yet. And that makes it hard for his mama and daddy who just want to go home and start being a family.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Meet My Grandson - Tyler Bradley

Just a quick note to let you know that my grandson, Tyler Bradley, has finally arrived. Yesterday, when I said I thought it would be a long day for Michelle and the baby - I had no idea. It was a long and brutal labor and delivery. Tyler was born at 6:16 a.m. Monday morning after a 30 hour labor.

Today this is what I know:

my daughter is an incredibly strong and strong-minded person

my son-in-law is tender and loving - and he LOVES my daughter the same way my husband loves me

my husband is an incredible father to a laboring daughter

my younger daughters are invaluable labor coaches

our family works well together through stress, pain, and fear and joy

I am totally in love with my little 6 pound grandson

When there are no words adequate - when there are no thoughts comprehendable - there are lots and lots of happy tears. (They just won't stop flowing)

our lives have been forever changed.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

It's Today!

Somebody very special is going to arrive today. Somebody we weren't expecting for another 3 weeks. Somebody who I cannot wait to snuggle. Somebody who is already loved and adored and even a little bit spoiled.
I will keep you posted. Please pray for Michelle and the baby - I think it's going to be a long day for them.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

A Special Gift

This was one of my Mother's Day gifts. I absolutely love it. In case you can't read it it says:
The next best thing to having you for a mom
is knowing my children got your for their grandma.
Only about 3 more weeks and I will be holding my first little grandbaby. And then only about 4 1/2 months and I will be holding my second little grandbaby.

God is so good.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

American Idol - A Soon to be Grandma's Guide to the Top 3

Tonight we were down to three. And each one sang three songs - one picked by the judges, one picked by the performer and one picked by the shows producers. Each song was scaled down to a minute and a half - which makes it hard to get into the song in my opinion. Here is my review:

Round One
David Cook sang Simon's choice: The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face - interesting song pick especially since Simon always chastises the performers for picking out old music that isn't contemporary enough. But it was interesting to see David sing something completely out of his genre. And he did a totally awesome job.

Randy chose If I Ain't Got You for Sayesha. She did good. But there is something about her voice that starts sounding a bit screechy after a while. She is talented though. Just not enough.

Paula chose And So It Goes for David A. He did a phenomenal job and it showed off his talent greatly. Paula chose a great song for him.

Round One Winner: David Cook followed closely by David A.

Round Two

David Cook chose Dare You to Move. I didn't care for it too much and I even thought he hit a flat note in the beginning of it.

David A. chose With You. His vocals were good but it didn't seem like his type of song at all. Even so, he did a good job with it.

Sayesha chose Fever. Dumb choice. She did a good job but what exactly is she selling? Her voice or....ahem....something else?

Round Two Winner: David A. followed closely by David Cook.

Round Three

The producers chose I Don't Want to Miss a Thing for David Cook. It was okay - I didn't care for the song - but he did great with it.

Hit Me Up was chosen for Sayesha. The judges didn't like it - but I thought it was her best performance of the evening. And the song fit her.

David A. sang Longer. I really liked it. This is where Simon started complaining about it being an older song - whatever - his own choice for David Cook was an older song too. I thought David sang it extremely well.

Round Three Winner
David A. followed closely by David Cook.

So according to my review I think Sayesha will be voted off tonight.

Check out more reviews over at BooMama's.

Friday, May 9, 2008

Potpourri Friday

This month is going by quickly - just like I knew it would. Time always goes fast when you need more of it. The countdown to Jess's graduation is begun. I have no more weekends at home this month so that means everything will have to be done after work. Sigh. I'm not so good about getting things done after work. We have been working in the yard, cleaning up the gardens, and sprucing up the outdoor areas in anticipation of the big party we will throw on the 25th. I had hoped to make a scrapbook chronicling Jess's first 18 years, but as I haven't even started that - it is doubtful. I have ordered the cake. That's good isn't it? Cake is important. Right?

Last night my husband and I turned one of my garden beds into a salsa garden. We planted tomatoes, jalapeno's, cilantro, and onions. Everything you need to make a great salsa. Except for the lime. But as far as I know no one has had any luck with lime trees here in the northwest. So I still have to buy the limes. But how fun will it be when we get the craving for salsa and we can just run out to the garden and pick all the ingredients - except the lime of course. The recipe I love is very simple. I just chop in very small pieces all the above ingredients. I also remove the seeds from the jalapeno's because that is what makes a jalapeno hot - and I'm not a big fan of hot. And I squeeze the juice of a couple limes over it all. And if I'm feeling fancy I mash up a couple of avacodo's into it. It makes the best fresh dip ever and it's such a nice summer appetizer. You can use it with chips, or put it on salads or sandwiches. Or you can eat it plain. It's that good. And you can make it last minute - it's very quick and easy.

This weekend is our church board retreat. It's just overnight for one night at our church campground. I am going to go along and just spend some time writing. I don't have to go to the business meetings so I think I can get quite a bit done. And I'm going to try and NOT think about all the things at home that need to be done - that won't be getting done - because I chose instead to go spend some time in the mountains. Everyone needs to get away for a little while right? Even if they have a million things to be done at home. For their last child's high school graduation party. And they have no more weekends to get it all done. It's a good choice right? Right?

I started using a new site meter for my blog. My previous one was difficult for me to understand. I'm now using StatCounter and I love it. One of the fun features on it is that you can look and see what people are searching for that brings them to your blog. Surprisingly to me the biggest by far search topic that is bringing people to my sight is "grandma names". My goodness. I had no idea when I wrote this little post, what a hot topic grandma names are. You have no idea the conversations I have had with people about it. There are some very strong opinions on grandma names out there. Who knew? I have decided on my grandma name. I am going to be Mia. My husband hasn't decided yet - I don't think it matters to him very much. He's more concerned with purchasing a docking station for the baby car seat to put in his pickup. When I asked him why he wanted that he said it would be good so he could take the baby "around with him" in his truck. I'm not sure where he is planning on taking a baby around too - but isn't that a sweet idea!

Some other keyword searches on my blog include:

Weird eating habits
Strange eating habits
America's weird food habits
weird eating

Are you noticing a theme here? I don't know what to think about that.

I haven't posted about this yet - and I don't know why because I am totally excited about it. Next weekend I am attending a Beth Moore Living Proof event! I can hardly wait. Travis Cottrell will be there as well. Several ladies from my church are going and two of my daughters are joining me. I think it will be a phenomenol weekend and I will let you know all about it.

And what did you think about poor Jason getting voted of AI this week? I saw it coming. As much as I started out liking him - he just didn't seem to improve any. And his attitude was strange. And sometimes he seemed kind of like a big dufas. But I have to say that I have downloaded two of his songs on to my iPod - and he is the only contestant I have downloaded songs from - so that's saying something. And if he makes an album I will probably buy it. And it was fun getting to know him.

So I'm off the the mountains. Have a happy weekend!

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Potpourri Friday on Tuesday?

Well, allrighty then. I figure if Barb can post her Sunday Meanderings on Monday, why can't I post Potpourri Friday on Tuesday? And speaking of Barb, check out the button on my sidebar. You can just click on it and it will take you right to her little shoppe. It's full of sweet things and she has been working hard to start up her little business. I think she is doing a phenomenal job of it too.

I'm not nearly as busy as Barb is. I'm not taking care of a newborn baby and starting up a home based craft business out of thin air. But I have been busy. Very, very busy.

Like having a graduation party at my house for my daughter Andrea who graduated this past weekend from college with an elementary education degree. What a beautiful day. What a beautiful girl.

This is Andrea and her husband Jayson, who has been so supportive and helpful to her while she made it through college and student teaching. Now he will go back to school full-time to work on his degree while she does the same for him. Isn't that how marriage is supposed to work? I can't tell you how proud we are of these kids.

Mom and dad are so very proud of her! That diploma in her hand represents so much hard work and determination. I work full-time at the university to make it financially possible for our kids to go to college, so I stake a small measure of satisfaction in the process as well. I always laugh that in our home it takes the one person without a college education to make sure everyone else in the house gets one.

We had a family bar-b-que at our house to celebrate following the commencement service. Is there any better way to say congratulations than with a Dairy Queen ice cream cake. I think not. And neither did anyone else since there was not even a crumb left over!

Our two sons-in-law - chef's extraordinaire!

Here are come of the family members who we hosted.

And this was my very favorite picture of the day.
Aren't they just beautiful? Poor Michelle, she is very uncomfortable and definitely ready to birth that baby! The last month is always the hardest. But I think she is so beautiful pregnant. And now Andrea is starting to show too - it's just too much fun. Sisters pregnant together - what a blessing.

So our year of celebrations is off to a great start.

Jessica's 18th birthday - check.
20th year anniversary pastoring our church - check.
Andrea's college graduation - check.

Still to come:

Jessica's high school graduation
Our 30th wedding anniversary
Grandchild #1 is born
Grandchild #2 is born
My 50th birthday

Blessings. Every single day.