Thursday, February 26, 2009

Eden's 3 months old

Hard to believe our baby is 3 months old already - time has really flown by! I tried really hard to get a smiley picture for her 3 month post but she wasn't having it. Claire really wanted to take some with her so I got a good one of the both of them.

Here is the link to my favorite pictures of Eden from this month! Some are duplicates from the blog so I decided to upload to shutterfly rather than post them here:

http://neilkathrynclaire.shutterfly.com/

Here are her monthly pics with her bear. I didn't post a 2 month pic to compare but you can go see if you want! I got an identical yawning picture which I thought was funny! I also tried the bumbo and she did well but didn't want to stay in for too long.




Always playing with her tongue
"Mom, get me out of this thing!"

Sweet Sisters
Things to remember this month:


- Eden has been kicking and moving her arms SO much more the past 2 weeks and she's started "talking" a lot more too! I just love to hear her voice

- Eden is sleeping a little bit longer but not too much more at night - the longest she has gone is 5-6 hours between eating so sleeping up to 5 hours. Too bad she starts around 8:30-9 when I'm still up trying to get stuff done! It seems impossible to go to bed before 10:30 p.m. She is such a good sleeper during the day and very predictable.

- Eden started grabbing toys this month and has a really strong grip!

- 2 days before this post, she weighed 11 lbs. and is eating close to 4 oz. at a time

- Eden is continuing to work on her focus on us when we talk to her and she is smiling more everyday. Can't wait to see it even more!

- Eden seems to be more tolerant of her loving sister's hugs, kisses and comforting!

- Eden LOVES movement even more than I noticed last month. If the car stops and she's awake, she cries and if she is crying then we need to get going on the highway to calm her down. She prefers giggling rather than rocking and likes to be patted on her bottom. Still loves her swaddle - the tighter the better!

- Eden is sleeping better by herself in the evenings hours - not having to be held as much. She is more awake during the day but no more than 1 1/2 - 2 hours at a time or else it's meltdown.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Chicken Pox - again!

Well, Claire has the pox again which shocked me but they did look just the same as last time! For those of you new to the blog or new to our family, Claire had them back in September. Here is the link to that entry if you're interested:

http://nkclewis.blogspot.com/2008/09/chickenpox.html

I noticed a bump on her chin over the weekend but didn't think anything of it. It looked just like a pimple. This morning I saw some on her shoulder and got concerned. Just like last time, they don't bother her and she hasn't had a fever or isn't feeling bad at all. Right now she has 4 on her shoulder, one on her arm, one on her chin and one on her scalp. All have already opened up and started to scab over which is good because she isn't contagious once all are scabbed over. Dr. Gulde said he has seen this happen even with the vaccine but he said "Who do they come see? The pediatrician!" Anyway, he said he thought there were some more coming on her bottom but I haven't gotten a good look yet. He said not to worry about Eden because it's rare for newborns to get it and she should be safe since she is strictly breastfeeding. Plus, what would we do? Claire just has to be extra careful with hand washing and being all over her - that is going to be an impossible task! At lunch Eden was fussing a bit and said "I'm sorry Eden. I can't come kiss you - I'm a little sick" - how cute is that? We'll see how compliant she continues to be!

I didn't take a picture last time so I did this time for many of you who asked what they looked like so to keep an eye on your little ones. They're at the bottom. She wasn't at church Sunday because Neil was pretty sick all weekend so we all stayed home - thank GOD! I'd hate to have put her with all the kiddos with the bump already on her face. Unfortuantely, she did go to her MDO yesterday so I'm about to call over there and give them the heads up!

Here are the 4 on her shoulder - they are almost already scabbed

This is the one on her arm that is pretty open. Before this they have a head that looks cloudy or yellowish - puss like - yuck!

Tuesday's Tribute: SAIDC

"The San Antonio Interfaith Darfur Coalition (SAIDC) is an organization formed to address the crisis of genocide in the Darfur region in western Sudan, a central African nation."

SAIDC Mission
We believe that, as People of Faith, we are called to do more than look at the epidemic of great suffering that genocide generates one-by-one-by-one, family upon family upon family.

Not shifting our eyes from real people in real suffering is a first step.

We invite you, One-by-One-by-One, from area synagogues, churches, mosques or wherever and however you follow your own spiritual and religious path, to join with us to do much more.

We work in coordination with others nationally through the Save Darfur Coalition in its moral imperative to inform public opinion and thus to mobilize pressure for more practical and effective responses to the human communities calling for help in western Sudan, a central African nation.

All are welcome from all over South Texas. All are needed to help the people of Darfur.



This week I wanted to highlight this A-MAZING organization that I came across about a year and a half ago. Neil and I went to a play that spoke about genocide and the mantra of "Never Again" really convicted me. The play referred to the genocides that we have let happen and although we say "never again", they continue. Our actions don't support or words. The SAIDC was at the play with pamphlets so we picked one up and got busy! Darfur is undergoing a horrific genocide and this organization helps encourage people to get involved and be a voice for these people. I haven't been as active as I should in the past 9 months so in writing this, I pledge to really get in there again and try to make a difference. One person at a time can do incredible things - especially when it's in line with God's love for His people no matter what they look like, how far they are from us or what they believe. They are humans that should not be treated so terribly and as another human, we have a responsibility.

I encourage you to visit their blog and the national website to learn more. Hopefully you will join them in their efforts to save these victims of genocide and prevent other genocide outbreaks in the future.

http://saidc.blogspot.com/ (the first entry now is in Spanish but it's the right website!)

http://www.savedarfur.org/ - you can find your local organization through this website and get a ton of info about what is going on over there!

Monday, February 23, 2009

Eden Weighs In

It's funny how one of the first questions people asks about babies is "How much does she weigh?" No wonder our culture is obessed with weight!

Well, I hadn't gotten Eden's weight since her 2 month wellness check so I thought I'd go to the lactation center while Claire was at MDO today. At 2 months, she weighed 10 lbs. even and today, being 2 days shy of 3 months, she weighed in at 11 lbs. even. At first I was shocked and wondered if the scale was calibrated but a consultant came in to check. She said it was and then she eased my concern which was so nice of her. She said she looks healthy, has the number of wet diapers she needs, is satisfied after eating and is just low on the scale of weight gain. At this age they should gain 4-7 oz. a week and she is gainig the 4 oz. so she said Eden's good and I shouldn't be worried! All that aside, she is the most perfect little thing I've ever seen! Here she is with her heart cheetah shirt and the most perfect, round tummy! Look at those checks - you'd never think she was only 11 lbs. HA!! You should see her leg and arm rolls just like her sister!


Thursday, February 19, 2009

Eden's Day

Today was a great day for Eden! We hosted out first playgroup and she got to spend some time with her friend Caleb! What a cutie he is! They are only a week and 1 day apart so we know they will become fast friends as they grow up together. Eden also took some time out to flash her smile this evening while doing tummy time - tummy time and smiling? WOW! Didn't know that would happen together so soon when she isn't smiling all the time yet! She really responds to her tickle spot under her chin so we do it a lot! She's smiling more everyday and looking cuter all the time. She's also starting to resemble her sister more and more... Enjoy these pics!


Claire trying out the tickle spot!
Caleb and Eden hanging out - these are two of our favorite seats in the house. Thanks Kate for letting us borrow them!! We LOVE the portable swing!
Getting stronger all the time!

This is my favorite one so far!

" Mom, why did you have to go and stick a bow on my head?"

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Claire singing a scale on solfege!

All you choir or singing nerds will love this one! Claire's been singing the solfege for awhile now but I could never get it on video (for those who don't know it's the do, re, mi, fa.... you know! From the "Sound of Music"). I captured it the other day right before nap time. She's going to be a pro at sight-reading! She's certainly her mother's daughter.

video

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Tuesday's Tribute: Dad

My dad just celebrated his 61st birthday last week so I wanted to write something special to honor him!

First of all, a picture of the girls with Grandpa celebrating with paninis, soup and of course, cake!



My dad would do anything for almost anyone. He has such a giving heart when it comes to his time and talents - especially to our family. I can't even count the times he has come to our rescue the past few years. If it means watching Claire on a whim, picking up a can of soup for me when I don't want to pack the kiddos up, helping us with our cars or household projects... I could go on and on! He is someone that I can talk to about most everything. He is sensitive. He is a listener and an observer. He NEVER hangs up the phone without saying "I love you" and never leaves us without a hug and kiss. He's so funny calling me often to just check up on "his girls". God has truly blessed our family so much with him!

Dad, you are such a wonderful man, dad and especially, grandpa! I LOVE watching you with the girls and the light they bring to your eyes. I pray that they have years and years to come to build up memories with you and mom. I love that I feel comfortable talking to you about anything - we don't have to agree on everything but I know we respect each other's opinions. I really thank you for that. Thank you for being such a positive light in my life. I love you!

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Happy Valentine's Day - our story

I know so many who think today is such a crock - a cheesy way to get us to buy things - but if it's one more day that you intentionally tell those around you that you love them then why not? We shouldn't need an excuse to do so but if it helps someone who truly deserves it feel special, then it is way worth the fuss...

Enough about that!! Now for the good stuff - Happy Valentine's Day to my wonderful husband!

14 years ago on Valentine's Day, I got ready for my first real date. I dressed up in a short, red dress with a heart cut out and curled the heck out of my long hair. Actually, I think my sister did my hair for me! I was so nervous and excited - we were going on a Project Graduation Fundraiser dinner to Fiesta Texas. My date was this new guy who was a studly senior and had been taking me home from school the past month. Yup, you guessed it! It was Neil! He brought me a frog planter with a purple heart (He knew I loved frogs and the color purple). I was so nervous and excited but glad that we were picking up some friends on the way, Mikey and Chris Locke. On the way out there, the four of us crammed into Neil's tiny white Mazda Truck that was on it's last leg (way too dangerous when we look back!). It was SO foggy that night and we got lost on our way to Fiesta TX which is hard to imagine these days. We had a great time and honestly, I don't remember much except for the ride and getting ready!

Well, there is one more thing I remember... on the way home we dropped off Mikey and Chris so it was just the two of us in the truck. I chose to sit in the middle and Neil had his arm around me. SO why so memorable? Well, the truck was a standard so every time he had to shift, he'd have to reposition his arm!! What a sweetie! We didn't have a good night kiss that night but I'm sure we had a hug. We didn't see each other much longer after that but celebrated our next Valentine's Day together 7 years later in Baton Rouge. That was the weekend Neil told me he was in love with me... We haven't spent one apart since!

I love you Neil with all my heart! How fun is it to remember our stories together!? I'm so glad we're both nostalgic and that we've created such a wonderful love story together.

(I have a picture of our first V-day together when I was 14 and Neil was 17 but he wouldn't let me post it =( If you ever want to see it, you know I have it in a scrapbook and you'll get a kick out of it!!)

Happy Valentine's from the girls

Nothing like seeing your daughters be so in love with their daddy! He's doing such a great job teaching them how they should be cherished and loved. Hope you all had a great Valentine's day!

We love you Daddy!




Not daddy's hands but a cute one with Eden's first V-day bib!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Tuesday's Tribute: Mikey

I came across this awesome idea on Suzanne Steece's blog a.k.a. Quad Mom and it is in reference to a little girl named Tuesday who recently lost her struggle with cancer. Tuesday's Tribute is posting blogs about someone or something else and reminding ourselves that it's not about us(me). It allows us to express others light so here I am on the first Tuesday.

Let me introduce you to Micael Claire Schmidt a.k.a. Mikey - (Claire is named after her middle name) This picture says it all:



This picture was taken in her Freshman piano class at ACU and I love it - her personality shins through. Mikey was a crazy girl! I'll never forget when I first met her. It was at a Marshall football game when we were in the 8th grade. It was at the beginning of November and she was with another friend of mine, Crystal. They were having a joint birthday party held at Northwest Church of Christ and invited me after we all huddled under a blanket cheering on the Rams! They were so sweet to include me after Mikey had just met me.

Mikey and I didn't go to the same middle school so we didn't see each other much after that until our first day of high school in the choir room. We became very close friends super fast. We went to dances, sang in concerts, auditioned together countless times, stalked our latest crushes, listened to The Cranberries and Green Day, went to Soul Quest, hung out at her house (ALWAYS at her house unless it was someone's birthday!), listened to each other when our hearts got broken, scrounged up change for taco Sunday at Taco Bell and had our share of spats to go along with it all.

Throughout our high school years, we became part of a group of 10 girls who were known as "the choir girls". We were close but didn't keep in touch as much as we should've when we went off to our separate colleges. That all changed when we got the call on Feb. 12th 1999, spring of our freshman year, that Mikey had died in a car accident on her way home from ACU for a funeral. I'll never forget all the details of that day and the feeling I had when Kate called. We were all in shock and disbelief. We had just gotten together over the Christmas break so how could this happen?
Needless to say, we all coped with it differently but I think that is why we all got better at staying in touch. This week will be the 10th anniversary of the accident which is hard to believe.

Mikey had a certain light about her - she loved the Lord and helped me a lot in my younger years as a Christian. She had this sort of confidence about her that amazes me as I look back and remember. It wasn't arrogance but she always seemed sure of herself and what she was doing. I know she had insecurities but this strength that she had was beyond her years. She always had an opinion and always seemed to know what she wanted. None of this wishy-washy stuff... Her long, dark hair and bright smile always so beautiful. She had the most perfect lips I've ever seen. Her top lip peaked just so - almost like a bow. She has this pure soprano voice that I could've listend to all day. Now, like I mentioned, we weren't always on the best of terms, just like sisters, but I always knew she'd be there for me. I wish I would've given her one last hug when I saw her the last time sitting in the blue chair at her parents house. She wasn't feeling well and we'd stayed up all night so it was just a quick see you later...

So Mikey is my Tuesday's Tribute because of how she has affected my life along with many others. Going through such tragedy at such a young age has certainly played a huge part in who I am today. I was SO angry at God and rebelled for a long time. That time of my life all the way until my Senior year of College were the hardest years for me but finding my way back to Him grew my faith. I know Neil and I are stronger people for all of it and we often wonder what she'd think about us two ending up together. Neil and I speak of her often and speak of death probably more than anyone I know. It's real and we've both been through it not just this once with our friends but a number of times since.

I pray that you take the time to give those you love a big hug and tell them exactly how you feel. You never know when it'll be the last one you get.

Here are some pics from high school. Not the best quality because they are old pics scanned and we weren't doing digital way back then!

Our freshman year at Mikey's house before the choir banquet. I went with her cousin Sean and she went with Clinton Haby!




Junior year prom - we both went with Seniors so got to hang out! She went with BJ and I went with Andy Wilson.

Senior year at the Madrigal Festival sipping coconuts

Mikey and I at the choir banquet our Senior year. She was VP and I was Pres. that year so we spent a lot of time organizing things - this was our last hoopla of the year with choir!

Quoting Claire

Here are a few funnies...

Obama (again)
Last night I was watching Obama's conference while feeding Eden and Claire came in to kiss me good night. She saw the TV and said " Obama... President Obama!" then gave me a hug and kiss. As she was about to leave she yelled "hug and kiss" like she often does when she or someone else is leaving so I thought she wasn't satisfied with our good nights. Well, she quickly ran to the TV to give Obama a big hug and kiss! What a ham!

Definition:Sweet
After Claire was done going potty today, she told me she was done so I could come in to help wipe. I've taught her to touch her toes (sounds funny and weird but hey, it works!) so I'm sure to get everything clean so when I walked in she was already in position. It was so funny that I had to laugh out loud and she said

C: "What mama?"
M: "Nothing honey - you're just sweet" (she doens't like it when you're laughing at her so I was trying to cover it up)
C: "Don't eat me..."
M: "What?!"
C: "I'm sweet - don't try to eat me"
M: now laughing out loud again - "Oh I won't!

Meeting Great-Aunt Nelda

The girls got to meet their great-aunt Nelda last weekend and believe it or not, I kind of did too!! I know I've met her before but we couldn't even remember when and as an adult, I actually got to get to know her. She's such a sweet woman and we really enjoyed having her visit from Buffalo, NY for a few days. She really loved the girls even though Claire was a bit fussy from a long day at the zoo! Love you Aunt Nelda and looking forward to seeing you again!


Monday, February 9, 2009

Happy Birthday Ethan!

Claire's friend Ethan turned three last week! Time has really flown by...

We had a great time at his party and we're so glad we got to celebrate with you, Ethan! Happy Belated Birthday!

The birthday boy sportin' his static hair-do

What a cute couple of kiddos!
Claire and Carly lovin' the slide
Silly girl Ayden!
Kamryn digging in her pinata loot!

Claire was OVER JOYED to have so many sweet treats - she picked up all the lollipops she could!

Jacy, Lauren and Claire

Eden and Adam hanging out in their matching car seats! They are only about 1 week apart and already spending time together!

Lezlee's shower

I'm so behind in posting this but wanted to do it anyway! January 24th I had a shower at my house for my sweet friend, Lezlee. She is expecting a little girl, Lily Kate in late Feb./early March. Our families have gotten really close the past couple years co-organizing our wonderful life group at church. She has such a big heart for others and I was so glad to do something special for her! Thank you to Lauren, Jennifer T., Jen G., Katie, Stefany and Danielle for helping with everything! Y'all are awesome and I'm so blessed by all of your friendships!

Here are a few pics from the celebration:

Lezlee and me


We had yummy brunch food and cupcakes!

Kristin, Jenny and Isaiah - I have a pic from my shower just like this one!


Amy and Me enjoying some girl time without kiddos!
Hostesses! Jen, Lauren, Stef, Danielle, Me and Jennifer - Thank you so much!

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Zoo and Cinderella

My wonderful friend Heather came into town this weekend! She got a big group together to visit the zoo on Friday and we had a great time - 5 adults, 4 toddlers and 2 babies! Thank goodness the zoo wasn't crowded! It was a beautiful day and it was so good for Claire to get out of the house. She's really into turtles lately hence the pic of the lone turtle. They are HUGE!

On Saturday, Heather took Claire to a Cinderella play while I judged a competition. She LOVED it and has talked about it everyday since. She went with Priscilla (Salazar for those of you from high school) and her 2 kiddos - Mady and Jaxsyn. I plan on taking Claire back sometime this month before it's over. Here are the pics that I couldn't decide on what to cut! Heather took some amazing pics too so thanks for sending them to me!

Mady and Claire - they're almost exactly 1 year apart!
My monkey
I LOVE this picture - such joy!

Feeding the goats! This is more dangerous then it looks!
How cool is that? The hippos are one of my favorites

Heather got Claire to go into the bird atrium! About a year ago Claire went in and a bird landed on her head. She told me all about it when she saw the atrium and kept her hand on her head the whole time. It amazes me how much she can remember!

LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this one!
Turtle

Heather and Eden
Mady and Claire with the Prince and Cinderella! They both dressed up