Monday, December 29, 2008
Monday, December 22, 2008
Sunday, December 21, 2008
Saturday, December 20, 2008
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
- Egg Nog or Hot Chocolate? I like both but drink neither very often. If I drink egg nog, I generally dilute it by half with skim or low fat milk. It is a bit thick for my taste, but I do enjoy drinking it.
- Funny Holiday memory as a child: One Christmas morning a blue banana seat bicycle was sitting next to our Christmas tree. I knew an older girl who had a bicycle just like that and asked my parents if she was at our house. Maybe I wasn’t awake enough to realize it was a Christmas present??
- Colored or white lights on your house? I prefer white lights – although we have no lights on the outside of our house.
- Do you hang mistletoe? No – I haven’t really thought about that before. That could be fun if it was placed strategically in the house so that I would only end up kissing Matthew.
- When do you put your decorations up? In the past, I have put them up the weekend after Thanksgiving or close to it; however, this year we barely got them up in time for a Christmas party at our house last weekend.
- Do you remember your favorite gift? I don’t remember a specific gift. There have been many!
- Does Santa wrap presents or just sit them under the tree? Santa only brought what was in our stockings when I was a kid.
- When and how did you learn the truth about Santa? I wish I could remember, but I don’t. It must not have been too traumatic – unless it was so bad that to this day I am repressing the memory.
- Do you open gifts on Christmas Eve? Not generally. The first Christmas I spent with Matthew’s family in Chicago we opened one small gift on Christmas Eve. That was when Matthew proposed to me. My “small” gift was my engagement ring.
- How do you decorate your Christmas Tree? Generally, we use white lights, a lot of ornaments, and an angel on top. My mom always gets us a new ornament each year and has done so since I was a little kid. This year we were in such a hurry that we didn’t even put ornaments on the tree. Matthew wrapped a large ribbon around the tree which looks really pretty.
- Snow? If I get to stay home inside then yes I enjoy snow on Christmas. I really don’t like to bother with snow when I’m traveling though.
- Can you ice skate? I think I have been ice skating once. I am sure it wasn’t pretty. In my current condition, I should probably just say no to ice skating.
- What is your favorite holiday dish? Does holiday candy count as a dish? I really enjoy eating pretty much anything that is served for the holiday. The older I get I really appreciate home-cooking...especially when I am not the one preparing the meal.
- What's the most important thing about the Holiday for you? I enjoy spending time with my family and reflecting on the birth of Jesus.
- What is your favorite Holiday Dessert? Hmmm…that’s a hard one. I am a dessert affectionado, don’t you know? I will say a pumpkin roll is my favorite.
- What is your favorite holiday tradition? Right now, I guess my favorite tradition is making all kinds of candy goodies. I used to do this with my mom, and it is just something I want to do around the holidays. I would like to come up with other things for when we have kiddos in the house. One tradition I want to start is reading the Christmas story from the Bible on Christmas Eve. Do you have any traditions you would like to share with me?
- What tops your tree? Right now an angel tops our tree.
- Which do you prefer Giving or Receiving? Can I say both? I like to give when I really know what a person would like to have. And I like to receive when someone has put so much thought into what he or she got me.
- What is your favorite Christmas Song? There is no way I can answer this question. I LOVE Christmas music.
- Candy Canes or Chocolate Covered Cherries? I like candy canes okay, but I would much rather have some other yummy treat list Rice Krispie treats, chocolate no-bake cookes, peanut butter fudge, tiger butter, etc.
I just noticed something about myself while filling out this little survey. I cannot leave an incomplete sentence in response to the prompt. That's weird!
Thursday, December 11, 2008
Monday, December 8, 2008
- When did you begin shopping for baby furniture?
- Where did you shop for baby furniture? Did you do any shopping online?
- Of all the things you registered for, what have you found to be a must-have?
- What did you buy/receive that you haven’t had much use for?
- When did you start decorating the nursery?
- Where did you find your favorite maternity clothes?
- I haven’t been sleeping well. I ordered a pillow that should arrive tomorrow. I have found that I am a tummy or a back sleeper. I cannot seem to get comfortable at all on my side. I hope the pillow will help with this. Do you have any other suggestions for this?
- Do you have any tips/tricks for getting all the nutritious food in each day?
- What kind of diaper bag have you found to be the best?
- Is there something you wish you had done, had not done, or had done differently before the baby arrived?
- Is there something I haven’t thought about yet??
I am sure some of this happened after you found out if you were having a boy or a girl (if you found that out). We plan to find that out at our 20 week appointment in January if the baby cooperates.
We are in a bit of a strange situation at the moment. Matthew was laid off during November. The job market here is not good as everyone is laying off professionals in his field. He has been applying for jobs all over the place, and we believe the likelihood of us moving is pretty good. I hope something will happen sooner rather than later, but that is something that is not up to us. At some point, I think we’ll decide that we have to start on the nursery even if we don’t know anything. But I’m not sure when that would be.
Thank you for helping me out! And I’m sure I’ll have more questions on several more posts over the next 5 or 6 months…or 18 years. And I’ll probably think of a few right after I click the post button.
Tuesday, December 2, 2008
This month we will be celebrating the following.
- 15th my friend Malinda's birthday
- 20th my Dad's birthday
- 25th the birth of our Redeemer
- 29th the first anniversary of our friends Kevin & Kristen
- Before I got to the house, Shannon and Matthew found many treasures. A few that I particularly enjoyed were Matthew's baby book (complete with a receipt from the hospital) and an outfit that Carolyn crocheted while she was pregnant with Shannon. Shannon doesn't think she ever wore the outfit (baby blue jacket, hat, booties, and blanket), but she is sure Matthew wore it home from the hospital. Needless to say, that came home with us. I cannot wait to use it!
- Max had his first experience with kittens. Matthew found 4 kittens outside the kitchen window a day or two before Thanksgiving. Shannon took them to the vet and kept them until Friday when she could take them to a foster home. We did not play with them much, but Max did get to sniff them and give them a few licks. He was very interested in them.
- Max did well with the kiddos who are 1 and 3. He learned quickly to sit next to the one year old when she was in her high chair. He was able to enjoy many table scraps that she willingly fed him. He was not so good with their toys. At our house, all the toys belong to him. We will have to work on this with our baby. He was very gentle with the kids though he did knock the one year old over a couple of times. He didn't run into her, but she is still a little wobbly with the walking.
- Max got a lot of attention, but I am pretty sure he was tired of hearing "lay down" and "beat it." He really wanted to be involved in everything with the kiddos - even diaper changes.
- I think Shannon felt that we had not packed adequate toys for Max, so she bought him a toy and some reindeer antlers.
- We survived our 18 hour road trip home from Chicago. We were in the car about 9 hours both Saturday and Sunday. The last couple of hours on Saturday we were snowed on, but the roads were not bad. The last 70 miles on Sunday the roads were not good. We came home to about 7 or 8 inches of snow. We were able to stay Saturday night with some friends just outside of Kansas City. That was a perfect halfway point for our trip home. They fed us a yummy dinner and breakfast.
- Max did really well in the car. On the way to Chicago, there was hardly anything in the car and he had a lot of space to himself. On the way home, that was not the case. He mostly slept because there wasn't much else to do. Unfortunately at one of our stops, I closed the car door on his tail. I cannot believe I did that. He yelped, of course, but seemed to get over it quickly.
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
So Matthew is in Chicago going through his mother's things. I haven't been able to talk to him for any length of time since he's been there, but I know this must be so hard for him. He definitely was not looking forward to it.
The pain of losing his mother less than 3 months ago is still so fresh. It is still shocking to remember that she is no longer here.
She made holidays an incredibly big deal. You would not believe the amount of food she would fix for the 6 people around the table. It seriously would have fed a small army. She asked for each person's request for a favorite dish. And she found pleasure in making every detail about the meal special - from the meal itself to the china, crystal, and linens. She also made sure to give thanks to the Creator of those special moments.
This Thanksgiving will be a difficult one, especially for the Merritts. I have to say it is hard to look forward to being there during such a tumultuous time. But I am looking forward to loving on my husband. It has been a hard road knowing what to say or how to act toward him during his grief. It is hard to see those you love in pain and not be able to do anything to ease that pain.
I first met Carolyn Thanksgiving Day 2001 - seven years ago. I remember vividly seeing her for the first time at the airport. I remember Matthew making a big deal of her hair. I'm not sure if I was aware she had battled breast cancer at that point. If so, I guess I hadn't considered that she may have lost her hair during that battle. She made me feel welcome in her home and had left a gift in the room she had prepared for me. I remember peeling and cutting up rutabegas while Matthew and Carolyn went to the airport to pick up Shannon and Dave that day. I had never eaten rutabegas before - I think they were one of Carolyn's favorites.
She was a beautiful woman and I hope that our gathering will bring healing. I hope it will be a time where we can happily recall so many good memories of her. Most of all, I hope that Matthew and I can glorify God in our attitudes and outpouring of love and thankfulness.
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
Matthew and I are expecting our first baby! I am a little over 12 weeks right now and our baby is due at the end of May. Even though we have known for almost 2 months now, it is still hard to believe. After waiting for what seems like a long time, it was shocking to find out. I think we had almost given up hope this would happen to us (at least I think I had). This week we heard the baby’s heart beat at our appointment. It was amazing. There is a miracle growing inside me. All I’ve felt so far is nauseous, picky/specific about what I want to eat RIGHT NOW, headache pain, and EXTREMELY tired. And Matthew has felt really tired of hearing me complain about everything listed in the previous sentence.
We have made our announcement to most of our family, close friends, and co-workers, however we haven’t told our Sunday school class yet. We have several couples in our class that have really painful pregnancy experiences. It has been hard to know how to share our exciting news in a respectful and gentle way. I know our friends will be excited for us, but I also know it will be painful for them due to their own circumstances.
When I can stand to be awake after the work day, I have been reading What to Expect When You’re Expecting and Eating Well When You’re Expecting. I have already learned so much about the baby’s development and the changes my body is going through (and the explanation for why I am so incredibly tired). At my appointment this week, my doctor gave me this plastic replica of what size our baby is this week. Isn’t that fun? It is seriously miraculous to see that even at this size and only 12 weeks the baby already looks like a baby. How amazing is our God and His creation!
I cannot say that I have been eating particularly well. I have not been eating a bunch of junk food, but I’m having a hard time getting many of the foods that I should be eating. I have had a strong aversion to onion which I previously really enjoyed. I cannot even stand the smell of them. And they give me indigestion which is quite uncomfortable. Cooking has been challenging. When I’m hungry, I am hungry for something very specific (generally from a specific restaurant – and I’ve found that substitutions for what I’m craving don’t work out so well) and I want it RIGHT NOW! I have not gained much weight yet…by my calculations less than 5 pounds, although my body is definitely going through some changes. I am currently still able to wear most of my pants except the ones that were tight on me to begin with.