Thursday, January 31, 2008

Singing in the Kitchen... banging on the pots & pans

That title comes from a song I used to listen to as a kid. It seems like there is always singing going on here, and banging on somethng.
Max loves to play piano and guitar. Drums are good, too. And he loves a good sing-a-song (microphone). He will hold a little guitar we have, only about 5 or 6 inches, and sing into one of the dresser drawer knobs in his bedroom. It is so adorable. He found another sing-a-song in Kynzie's scooter. He stands at the handle bar and croons away into it. Mostly, we have no idea what he is singing, but he is very passionate about it. He does sing "halelujah" quite a bit, but that is about he only word we can understand so far.
He also makes a piano out of anything and everything. Somehow he saw a piano in the open dishwasher.

Kynzie loves to pretend. She likes to play scenes from books (David & Goliath) or videos (soldiers from Easter Promise), or make up her own games like Trashman & Turtle. Lately, she has finally taken an interest in playing with her dolls, kitchen set, and other ready made pretend items. It has been so much fun watching her care for them and care for her "house".
In this picture of Kynzie, she is pretending to be an angel singing "Glory to God in the highest", she said.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Verses to relax by...

I am putting together some favorite scriptures pertaining to peace, comfort, and grace for relaxation purposes during birth. I have some favorites, but I am interested in what others find comforting. Here are some of the first ones that have come to mind.

Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me.
But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me.
That is why, for Christ's sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong. - 2 Corin 12:8-10

Therefore the LORD longs to be gracious to you, And therefore He waits on high to have
compassion on you. For the LORD is a God of justice; How blessed are all those who long for Him. - Isaiah 30:18

Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
Blessed {be} the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort,
who comforts us in all our affliction so that we will be able to comfort those who are in any affliction with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. - 2 Corin 1:2-4

"Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest.
"Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and YOU WILL FIND REST FOR YOUR SOULS.
"For My yoke is easy and My burden is light." - Matthew 11:28-30

I know it may be difficult for some of you to imagine that I will be able to relax as Scott's soothing voice oozes out these verses during moments of moderate to intense pain. But I will say that I don't know what would have happened to me, and most importantly Max, had I not had Scott's voice right next to me to focus and concentrate on during that birth.

This time, I figured I might as well give him something scripted to say! Just kidding... God put us together to work as a team, and Scott did his part very well.

I am also preparing a CD of favorite songs, mostly praise songs. (It will be a CD so Scott won't have to sing them to me!) Maybe I'll list those next time. Feel free to offere suggestions.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

No Cavities! No New Corvette...

Yesterday, we had our 6-month dental check-ups and cleanings. We have been going to the same dentist for so long... my parents tooks me to this dentist, and I've been going since. Most of the office staff gals have been there that long, and a few of the dental hygenists have been there long enough to watch my kids grow up.

Kynzie had her second check up today. They don't start cleanings, etc. until they're at least three. She does really great! She has always done great at the doctor so this wasn't a huge stretch.

Max, on the other hand, is a very different child. He didn't even want anyone to look at him until the end. He sat in his stroller and watched as my teeth were cleaned. He would frown and hide his face when someone would talk to him. Kynzie was a little shy at his age too, but she would at least smile and hide her face. He is such a sweet boy. I really enjoy learning about his personality. By the time they were done with my teeth, he was a little more comfortable. And by the time we left, he had warmed up enough to tell them thank you for his new toothbrush and wave good-bye.

Delainey was cavity-free once again. Way to go, Delainey! She has had her picture on their no cavity board for 10 years (since she didn't start check ups till she was 3). Yay, Delainey!

Kynzie got her picture up on the board as well. And, in case you were wondering, I didn't have any cavities either. Our dentist joked that he wouldn't be able to get that new corvette from our family. That's just the way I like it.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Where are we going to put two more babies?

Our house is not as small as some houses. Our house isn't as big as other houses. And, I am not even sure it is the size of the house that matters so much. I think, for me, it is the amount of stuff in the house.

I am admittedly a clutter-aholic; a plain, ole pack rat. I cannot seem to part with my stuff. I have pried myself away from enough stuff to have two garage sales and countless little trips to thrift stores for donations. But there is just still too much stuff! And I am not even talking about the kids' things - toys, clothes, books, etc.

I think I have curbed the intake dramatically in the last couple years. I just need to oust some things. It is difficult for me. All of the things I sort through (time and time again) are good, useful items. I am sure I can give you a different "reason" as to why I need to keep each particular piece of priceless treasure if you were to sit with me as I sort through the endless boxes and buckets in the garage, basement and every closet throughout the house.

I have tried selling on eBay (successful but too time-consuming for me), giving away on FreeCycle (good motivation, but how many strangers do I really want to invite to my home), garage sales (talk about time-consuming), and anything else that I thought would be beneficial to ridding my home of clutter.

One thing that has helped tremendously is FlyLady. She has really branched out into many others areas to help us all become the best domestic divas we can be, but the simple message of de-cluttering is the one I needed. I definitely had C.H.A.O.S. (Can't Have Anyone Over Syndrome). My whole family suffered. Marla Cilley, FlyLady, explains that you cannot organize, let alone clean, clutter. It is like an albatross around your neck, and you take your family down with you.

I know this battle is between my ears more than anywhere else. This is an area of my life I must conquer for my family's sake. And, I believe the only way I am going to conquer it is through Jesus Christ. I know that may sound silly. But I have tried everything I can think of in my own strength. What Paul wrote in 2 Corinthians 12 comes to mind... "there was a thorn given me in my side... to torment me. Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. But he said to me, 'My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.'"
His grace is enough for me. I am sooo thankful for that truth over and over!

So, while I am feeling my best right now in pregnancy, I have been trying to dedicate time to this task. It is a formidible task, especially considering the other things that need to take time in my days, such as home education, training toddlers, regular housework, and concentrating on my health for my twins. I can't forget to add potty-training to this list. I am putting it off, but I think Max is ready. But His grace is sufficient for me!

Here are a couple of photos of Max in a baby doll bed. It was near the door to be ushered out of the house, and he decided it was just his size.

Ready for the races!

Here are Kynzie & Max with their helmets and new rides from Christmas. Max wasn't quite tall enough to move the motorcycle at first, but I think his legs have stretched out a little since then. Both kids enjoy both the scooter and the motorcycle, and they are really good about sharing with each other. I am sure they will have so much more fun when they can actually get their toys outside, but it has been nice for them to take advantage of them in the house while it has been so cold!

Friday, January 18, 2008

A day in the schooling of Delainey

Okay, not really a day, but some tidbits about our home education.

Math - this week is Pi. I think I enjoy every other subject more than I enjoy math. And maybe that is why Delainey has chosen math to be her favorite subject. I don't know, but I am all for it. I encourage her to go for it in math. Last year, she went through 2.5 math books because she was able to go at her own pace. This year, it is a little slower going, but it is also a more difficult level and a bigger book. It is called advanced math but it is basically pre-algebra.

Science - we've been working through General Science. We're going to keep going with that and try to talk my dear dad into some hands-on lab experiments. A couple nights ago, we watched a DVD called Creatures That Defy Evolution - Volume I. We found it interesting to learn about the various wonders of God's creation. I think we will request volumes II & III from Netflix as well. We're also going to finish the set of videos titled Creation Seminar Series. It is proving to help Delainey think through things more for herself.

Reading - I can't seem to keep enough books around the house for her to read! She finished Mara, Daughter of the Nile way ahead of schedule, so I found some other readers on Egypt to keep her busy. I really am glad she enjoys reading; that is so important for learning to love to learn.

Language Arts - She has grammar, spelling, reading comprehension, building thinking skills, vocabulary, all the usual stuff.

History/Social Studies - We're going through some ancient history now - Egypt specifically. She also writes brief current events reports this year. We're going to start adding her own editorials of sorts.

One of Delainey's projects this week was to create a cave painting. She gathered paints and papers and brushes and set to work on her creation. When she was done, she showed it to me. It was a painting of a cave. I couldn't help but laugh. It was a good painting of a cave. In fact, she thought the assignment was so elementary that she painted two versions - one in the rain and one in good weather - just to provide a little more challenge. I suggested next time, however, she challenge herself by listening a little more carefully to the instructions.

She was supposed to paint a story that might be found on the prehistoric wall of a cave. It was funny, and we both had a good laugh.

Next week we're supposed to make a mummy. The directions say we are supposed to use a roasting chicken. But I am not sure I am ready to go that direction. We bought a mummy-making kit that requires no poultry. I think we'll stick to that.

We are going to study the history of passover and the plagues as well as the spiritual significance in relation to Jesus as the Messiah. I think we're going to do a little mini-study on sheep and shepherding (since Jesus was the sacrificial Lamb and also our Shepherd). It all kind of stems out of our study of Egypt.

Life skills is one of my favorite subjects. One aspect of the Life Skills subject is cooking and other home ec topics. Delainey can make a yummy lasagna because she is good at reading a recipe and finding her way around a kitchen. I am very proud of her accomplishments in this area (as well as many other areas). We also include child development, sewing, wood-working, and anything else she wants to learn that doesn't fit in a "regular" subject.

Well, there is more, but that's all for this update!

Thursday, January 17, 2008

How much protein does that have?

If you are searching for the amount of protein in a specific food, try this site for Nutrition Data.

We just came home from our weekly Bradley Birth classes. Tonight I won the nutrition sheet contest. I am not sure whether it was because I was only one of two moms that turned them in, or because I had the highest protein, or both. But I won a loaf of homemade, whole grain bread. It is so delicious; I have eaten almost half of it already!

According to my new favorite website for eating while pregnant with twins, the Brewer Diet, (oh, and my favorite 'twin' book Having Twins), I am supposed to have between 150-160 grams of protein a day with twins. My doctor said she would be happy if I keep it above 100. It has been difficult at times for me. I have never really given much thought to how much protein I do or don't eat. But now, I can tell you how much protein is in many a single food, and even give you a pretty good guesstimate on recipes if I know the ingredients.
(I use this website to help me figure protein amounts -

I have started adding wheat germ, nutritional yeast, flax seed, Bulgar, and other healthy means of extra protein (and fiber) to nearly everything we eat. We were already eating mostly whole grains when it comes to breads and pastas, so I guess it wasn't a huge leap to add a little more nutrition. Some days, I still resort to a protein bar if I need a little more for my protein count, but I am getting good at filling my diet with protein.

Now, I just need to work on the green veggies a little more. I make "green" smoothies often... Spinach, pear, and cucumber is a favorite. But I just don't seem to eat 3 a day.

Here is an ideal example of a good diet for a mom pregnant with twins. This is for one day. I realize some of these items may be debatable, such as the milk/dairy since many nutritionists say the milk we drink is not easily assimilated, but I will just type it as it was given to me.
4 servings milk/dairy - 8 oz each
2 eggs
10 servings of protein - 7 grams each (not counting the dairy & eggs)
3 servings dark green veggies
6 servings whole grains
4 servings vitamin C (from fruits & vegetables)
3 servings vitamin A (from fruits & vegetables)
5 servings fats & oils - about 1 Tablespoon each (good fats & oils only, please)
2 servings of salt - this is salt your food to taste (good sea salt or kosher salt & the sodium in most prepared foods doesn't count for good salt)
72 oz of water
1 snack - no further definition given. (I think this was put in there for people like me who feel they have to have something "yummy" every day, although even my snacks are getting healthier, such as the bread I won tonight.)
2 Supplements - prenatal vitamins, etc. Right now, mine include my health food store prenatals, Juice Plus, Vitamin C, and garlic. Oh, and milk thistle for extra liver support. Oh, and liquid chlorophyll for added support for my still expanding blood volume.

If my diet was excellent, I would probably forgo the extra supplements. But I am not there yet.

I think I left out the liver-if-you-like-it once a week and the potato 3 times a week because I don't care for either.

This class we discussed all the things we may or may not want to include in our birth plan. As always, I found it very interesting and informative. Have I mentioned I am loving these classes? I think I may want to be a Bradley instructor someday...

Monday, January 14, 2008

Free Books!!!

What a great idea! You pay to ship books out to other members should they request one of your posted books. When you request a book from someone else, they pay the shipping to you. You receive 2 credits for free books when you post 10 of yours that you no longer want. Each time someone requests one of your books, and you mail it out, you receive another credit. Check it out and see if it is for you!

If you do sign up, I would appreciate it if you would put my email address in the who referred you section. Thanks!

Saturday, January 12, 2008

In the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit

Tonight, we went to visit my sister and her family. It is about an hour away. My sister was baptized tonight. It is always a powerful display to see someone make that outward confession of what has taken place inside their heart. Of course, she asked Jesus in her heart several years ago.

Tonight she shared that she came to a point in her life where she realized that, yes, she believed in God and in his son Jesus, but that she needed to take that one step further to have a personal relationship with Jesus. So, tonight she wanted to take the next step in obedience to Christ of symbolically washing away the old man and coming back up new in Christ Jesus. (Obviously, the water does not save you or really change you. It is only a symbol; a public confession of what Jesus has done in your heart.)

I was very glad I was able to witness it. Oh, I forgot to mention another cool aspect of this baptism was that her husband was the one who dunked her! How precious it was.

It reminded me of when I baptized my own husband (actually, he wasn't my husband yet). I had a hard time seeing through my own tears. I remember being afraid I wouldn't be able to pull him back out of the water. But it all went fine.

I really didn't want to be the one to baptize him; I wasn't sure it was my "place". I am not sure the Bible gives a definition of who should or shouldn't baptize. Our church encouraged the one being baptized to ask the person who led them to Christ to "dunk" them, or a family member or church leader or mentor. Scott said it was because of me that he gave his life to Christ. I am not so sure of that; I think it was the Holy Spirit. But he really wanted me to baptize him. He said it was important to him. So I agreed.

My sister-in-law and my nephew are planning to be baptized at their church soon. I hope I will be able to witness that too.

Friday, January 11, 2008

Meet Babies A & B

I had a second appointment today in addition to meeting the new OB/GYN. I also went to the new perinatalist for a second detailed ultrasound. It was at the new hospital where we will be delivering the twins.

Everything looked good! Baby A is head down and lower on the left side and weighs 1 pound 4 ounces so far. Baby B is transverse (sideways) on the right and weighs 1 pound 1 ounce. They are in separate sacs and it looks like the two placentas are fused together. But the placenta is not too low as was first suspected. Here are a few of the pictures they sent home with me.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

a la natural

Last night, in our Bradley Birth class, we discussed transition and second stage labor, and we watched a video of a twin birth. Wow. It was very uh, colorful. But I felt very encouraged, and even energized after watching a mom give birth to her twins as home... and the midwife didn't even make it in time! Any birth is amazing and miraculous.

During Kynzie's birth, if someone had told me that I was most likely in transition, I think I would have held off on the epidural. She was born within an hour of receiving the epidural. Then, with Max, there was a little complication, but I didn't have any pain medication. It was amazing to be able to feel the difference in their births. When I found out I was pregnant this time I wanted to be more prepared to handle the pain and even some smaller complications naturally. Of course, at that time, I didn't know I was going to have twins, but I think that only made me more determined.

I also knew there had to be more I could control during pregnancy to effect the outcome than what the doctor seemed to be telling me. So began my mission to research and learn all I could about the whole process of being fruitful and multiplying.

I learned of the Brewer Diet (not a weight loss diet), which has been a great help. We decided to take Bradley Birth classes this time. My favorite books this time have been Naturally Healthy Pregnancy by Shonda Parker and Having Twins by Elizabeth Noble. And, I threw out my copy of What to Expect When You're Expecting.

My journey to all things new and natural has taken me to meet new people and to learn new things about people I've already known. One new aquaintance is the OB/GYN I met with today. She was a Bradley instructor/doula before she became a doctor! Today's appointment went really well, and I am very encouraged.

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Just for Fun!

I love to decorate cakes... it is so much fun. It can be lots of work as well. And sometimes I recruit family members to help me when my hand is cramped in a permanent claw position. Kynzie enjoys looking through my cake decorating books to help me find ideas. In fact, she does it even when I am not making a cake.

Many of my friends have suggested I start decorating cakes for profit, and maybe someday I will. I still have a long way to go. Here are a few of my more recent cakes. I lost many pictures of previous cakes when our last computer crashed, and we never retrieved the data from the hard drive.
Certainly not professional yet, but I enjoy working at it!

It's just two babies, not a disease...

We have decided to look for a new doctor to take us through the birth of our twins. I am so excited about being pregnant with twins and so much more so about their birth. I often reflect on how awesome our God is that he has allowed me this privilege! Unfortunately, many in the medical community view a twin delivery at my young age to be a near crisis situation with no signs to point to such.

I was beginning to dread the birth of these babies to hear my doctor talk every time I went in. I am sure there is reason for the barage of testing and precautions, and I appreciate that he has experience. However, the amount of cover-your-buns medicine that he (& others) practice, is too much for me.

Moments after Scott and I made the decision to explore our medical options, I felt the load lighten. I began to feel the plan and the promise of God's blessing well up inside again. God has a plan for this birth, and I am in awe once again that he cares about us so intimately. It just shows how much he desires to have a personal relationship with us, the whole reason he sent Jesus to bridge the gap.

I asked several women I know who have had natural births, home births, etc., and a particular doctor's name came up more than once. So, I have an appointment with her on Friday, and I am actually looking forward to it. This doctor used to be a doula, or birth assistant, if I have my information correct.

And speaking of doulas, God answered my prayers to provide one! I am just thrilled. I think she will be a wonderful help and encouragement to us. She shares our belief that God has a plan for this birth, and she is willing to help us seek out that plan. Scott is glad to have the extra support for this birth as well.

Monday, January 07, 2008

The Story of Little Puppy

Kynzie has a little, stuffed puppy that she originally named Little Tiny Puppy, but has since shortened his name to Little Puppy. She received Little Puppy as a party favor at her cousin Aubrey's birthday party at least two years ago. Little Puppy is probably less than five inches long. Kynzie sleeps with Little Puppy at nap time and bed time. She plays with Little Puppy and likes to take him with her whenever we will allow it.

Max recently became aware of Little Puppy and started talking about Little Puppy often. He would enjoy playing with it when Kynzie allowed it, or when she wasn't aware of it. But he seemed to respect that only Kynzie could sleep with it.

Friday night, Max let us know that he wanted a little puppy of his own. I made the off-handed comment to him that we would have to get him a little puppy some day, too. Of course, Kyznie, the ever-obsevant one, picked up on my comment as well.

Saturday, we decided to go to the mall to exchange an outfit Kynzie had received for Christmas. While I was browsing through the girls clothing, Scott walked around with the little kids. Kynzie came over to me and excitedly told me all about the Webkinz pets they found nearby. She was so happy that they had kittys that she could barely get it out.

So, we decided to let her pick out a Webkinz kitten because she enjoys Webkinz World so much. Kynzie quickly picked the kitty out that she wanted, a black and white cat she promptly named Pinkweed (I have no idea where she came up with that... because I know you are wondering). Then, she proceeded to show us the puppies that would work for a Little Puppy for Max (who was sound asleep in the stroller during all of this). It was so sweet and genuine; she really wanted her brother to enjoy the comforts of Little Puppy just like her.

Senitmentalists that we are, we agreed to get Max a Little Puppy. Kynzie helped pick it out, and I think she did a good job because Max sleeps with it now at every nap and every night. It is so cute. It's like some sort of brother/sister bonding.

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Faith Like My Child

Okay, I have to tell the popcorn kernel story. I have told it to some already... but this is just too good.

One Wednesday afternoon, we had popcorn for an afternoon snack. Kynzie really enjoys popcorn. After several minutes of very concentrated eating, Kynzie said "Mom, I have one of these stuck in my nose." I looked to where her finger was pointing to see that she was referring to a popcorn kernel.

Now, mind you, I was in the same room the whole time and even at the same table most of the time. I didn't see her try to fit a popcorn kernel in her nose; Delainey didn't see her try it either. I asked her several questions regarding how and why mostly. I looked inside her nose with a flashlight, but didn't see a thing. We used an aspirator to attempt to suction it out, but to no avail. I had thoughts of infection and trips to the emergency racing through my mind, as well as hopes such as "maybe she really didn't get a kernel stuck in her nose" or "maybe it fell out already". She didn't seemed to be troubled by it, and her breathing was fine, so we decided to wait and see.

At some point on Friday, Kynzie told me that she wished that kernel would get out of her nose. She wasn't upset or bothered, just matter of fact. We looked and pried again, but again to no avail. Then on Saturday, while I was out grocery shopping, Kynzie asked Daddy to pray with her that the popcorn kernel would come out. Later, as I was putting away groceries, Kynzie and Daddy were playing in the living room when she screeched "It fell out! It fell out!" Scott said he was amazed when he saw a little kernel fall to the floor.

Why didn't I just pray in the first place way back on Wednesday? You'd think I would have learned from her faith by now. Faith like a child. It's that simple. It's that amazing. She has no doubt that God will hear her prayers and that Jesus will take care of her. Most adults could take lessons from her. I know I should.

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

I am a Weekly Book Giveaway Winner!

I have entered many a blog-based giveaway and haven't been the blessed recipient... until now. How exciting! Below is the information about the weekly giveaways. I really enjoy this webiste and Robin Sampson's books. I just received her book "A Family Guide to the Biblical Holidays" for Christmas (I know, a little ironic). But this is all part of the exciting journey on which God is taking us.
blog contest giveaway

Heart of Wisdom Blog Contest: A Free Book Random Drawing will be held every Monday through the months of December and January at the Heart of Wisdom Blog. Each week one Heart of Wisdom subscriber will be randomly selected o receive one FREE Homeschool Book or Heart of Wisdom Ebook from A new title will be given away each week. Click here to enter.