A Pizza Party!

Our whirlwind week of birthdays (actual day and parties) ended on Saturday with Morgan's birthday party.   This year Morgan opted for a pizza party. I found a great little place that is known for their pizza parties.  They let the kids make their own pizzas (the pizza was some of the best i have ever had. really good.), practice throwing dough (fake dough thankfully) and show them behind the scenes of pizza making. Our tour guide was quite eccentric which of course made all these giggly girls even more giggly.  Here are some photos from the pizza party!

the invitation
birthday girl
largest ball of aluminum foil. ever. it weighs 310 lbs
the girls with our tour guide buddy
a real pizza maker showing us how to toss the dough
morgan practicing her dough tossing skills

making pizzas 
Happy 9th Birthday Morgan!


Update on Mauryn

Thank you for all your kind words, suggestions, and especially all the prayers for our sweet little Mauryn.

To update you on a few things since Monday:

- Mauryn did not like the pediasure, any flavor, so we are now giving her some carnation instant breakfast in her milk, putting half and half on her cereal, and adding in higher calorie foods when possible. I did find some great ideas for snacks on the internet. I want to increase her calories in a "healthy" manner.

- It is hard as a parent to hear your child isn't gaining weight and to see that she doesn't even fall on the growth chart anymore. I felt like a failure as a mother. I have spent quite a bit of time this week thinking over Mauryn's two years and wondering what I could have done differently. I honestly don't know that there is anything to do differently but now we wait and we pray that she gains weight over the next few months and we don't have to do any invasive testing.

- On Wednesday we had an appointment with the physicians assistant at the ENT's office and he suggested that Mauryn get tubes in her ears. This morning we were up at the crack of dawn heading the hospital. The procedure went really well. The doctor said that when he made his incision fluid and puss just oozed out of her ears. He said we should see a dramatic difference in her behavior (really, is that why she is so fiesty?) and even her eating. We are praying this helps! Lance had to be out of town for work this morning so Morgan and Landon had to get up early to tag along for Mauryn's procedure. I must say, they were such good sports. They thought it was pretty cool that they could go to the hospital in their pajams. After Mauryn was released from recovery, we made a pit stop at Krispy Kreme (my first time ever getting a donught from there)for a really healthy breakfast. I figured they needed a little sugar boost after getitng up so early. Morgan was the photographer, enjoying her new digital camera, so here are a few pictures from this morning!

waiting to get called back
what a big girl in her hospital gown

chatting with mommy before going in for tubes

all set to go with her cap


Happy Birthday Morgan!

Age: 9

Personality: sensitive, empathetic, mature, compliant, inquisitive, caring, observant, rule follower, cautious, helpful, a good friend and sister

Favorite Books: Little House on the Prairie, Encyclopedia Brown, Jigsaw Jones, Meg Macintosh, American Girl Doll books

Favorite Songs: Suddenly by Ashley Tisdale, All High School Musical songs, Jonas Brothers, Katie Wilson

Favorite Movies: High School Musical 3, Ice Princess, Little House on the Prairie DVD's, Brady Bunch DVD's, Dreamer

Favorite Foods: taco hotdish, grandma's cinnamon rolls

Favorite School Subject: reading

Hobbies: gymnastics, coloring, reading, listening to music, doing crafts

Favorite Activity with Mom: going shopping and to the movies

Favorite Activity with Dad: going skiing

Favorite Sport: gymnastics

What do you want to do when you grow up?:  a gymnastics coach or a photographer

Favorite Toys: ipod, leapster, nintendo ds

Favorite Games: Battleship, Life, Guess Who?, Mancala, Sequence, card games

Dear Morgan,
I remember holding you in my arms for the first time and now here you are nine years old already. You are growing up to be such a beautiful young lady. Your dad and I are so proud of you!  You are a wonderful big sister to Landon and Mauryn. What a great role model you are for them with your kind and gentle heart.  Over the last two years since you started gymnastics (one of your passions in life) we have noticed you grow in confidence and maturity.  You set an example for others by being thoughtful, respectful, and obedient.  God has big plans for you beautiful girl, keep following His lead.

We love you!

Mom and Dad

Not Quite Wordless Wednesday: Prom/Wedding Theme Party

A few weeks ago our neighbors had their annual Halloween costume party. This year they added a twist and decided on a theme: Prom/Wedding.

Knowing that my mother saves EVERYTHING, I called her to see if she still had any of my prom dresses.  Sure enough, in the mail came my hot pink prom dress with matching dyed hot pink shoes from Prom 1990.  

Lance found a sweet suit at the Thrift shop and borrowed a hot pink tie from our neighbor (who is also a saver, this tie happened to be from her prom date).  I spiced up my hot pink number to go more 80's with the look for the evening. 

We had a great time at the party. It was fun to think back and remember to those old high school days.


Itty Bitty Mauryn

A little over a month ago I read this post.  I remember my heart aching for Sarah and her husband Jason as they were going through this situation with their sweet Lincoln.

Today I went back and read that post again.  I felt the fear and the worry in a whole different way because friends we are now in a similar situation with our precious Mauryn.

At Mauryn's 2 year check up today, her pediatrician expressed concern over the fact that she is not gaining weight.  Our itty bitty toddler weighs just barely 20 pounds and no longer has a point on the growth chart  for her weight.

Our concern level is definitely heightened but we are not in full panic mode... at least not yet.  I am grateful for a pediatrician who is allowing us to look down a few avenues before doing a full medical work up.  

Our first step is to increase Mauryn's caloric intake, which means lots of carbs and at least one pediasure a day.  We gave her a pediasure tonight and the first words out of her mouth were "YUCK!"  

Our second step is to have an appointment with an ENT on Wednesday.  As we looked through Mauryn's records today, there were notes on all of her last appointments that she had quite a bit of fluid in her ears. The fluid has become infected causing an ear infection,  but it can cause discomfort and pain.  At this point, Mauryn is probably so accustomed to the feeling it doesn't bother her anymore.  We will be consulting with the ENT about getting tubes in her ears.  Our pediatrician said that Mauryn is probably hearing like she is in a fish bowl. Poor baby!  She also thinks that all the fluid could be causing discomfort when she eats.  

In three months we will go back and see if Mauryn has started to gain weight more rapidly. If she still is not gaining weight, then they will then do a full medical work up.

We are praying and laying our precious baby at the feet of God. We are putting our trust in Him to watch over her and protect her. 


Happy 2nd Birthday Mauryn!

Age: 2

Personality: loving, spirited, protective, silly, emotional, curious, full of life

Favorite Foods: black olives, grapes, raisins, pirate booty, macaroni and cheese, grilled cheese

Favorite Songs: Jesus Loves Me, anything by The Wiggles, anything by Go Fish, all the little songs she sings to herself all.day.long

Favorite Books: all Maisy books, Sandra Boynton books, Mrs. Wishy Washy

Favorite Toys: Bitty Baby and all things to do with her baby doll, play kitchen and tea set

Favorite Activity with Mom: reading books, "helping" in the kitchen, playing tea party, going on walks

Favorite Activity with Dad: playing outside, working in the yard, playing chase and snuggling in the morning

Dear Sweet Mauryn,

It is hard to think back and remember what our family was like before you.  You bring so much energy and life into our home.  You feel all things deeply - happy, sad, or mad- we all know how you are feeling.  We love to listen to you sing your songs and watch you dance your dances.  You make us all giggle daily.  We love to see how you are protective of your older sister and brother. You are so sweet to them if their feelings are hurt.  Your tender heart balances your fiery personality.  We can't wait to see the plans God has for your life.

Happy Birthday sweet girl! We love you!

Mommy and Daddy


A Ladybug Birthday

Even though the dog got into my popcorn balls, Mauryn's party went off without a hitch today. I am tired (didn't sleep much worrying about the dog - so far no doggy vomit - phew!) so this post is coming to you in pictures (sorry there are quite a few):

the invitation

ladybug cake
ladybug gift bags
the soon to be 2 year old trying on her ladybug antennae
playing pin the dot on the ladybug
throwing ladybugs through the flower
this is how its done
the toddlers- this is the best we could get
enjoying her moment
thanks for the help brother
that cake was so yummy!


Doggie's Late Night Snack

I just finished setting up for Mauryn's birthday party tomorrow morning.

I crawled into bed, patting myself on the back for being one step ahead for tomorrow, when I hear a crunching sound coming from downstairs.

I quickly ran downstairs and what do I see.... my dog eating the popcorn balls out of the goodie bags!  Cellophane and all - gone! GRR!

I am sure I will have some lovely surprise from my dog in the morning when his body rejects the five cellophane wrapped popcorn balls.

Maybe prepping the night before isn't worth it.

Book Review: Sin Boldly

I work well with deadlines.

I don't generally need a deadline when it comes to books but I have had one book on my nightstand for eight months. Eight LONG months.  I needed a little push to finish it so I start something new and find joy in reading again.

A few weeks ago, Jessica posted about a book giveaway. I saw this as a good opportunity to give myself the nudge to finish that other book.  
I wasn't sure what to expect when I started to read Sin Boldly. Honestly, it is probably a book I would have passed by in a book store. The title seemed  a little daunting, a little deep, and a little intimidating.  

I found Sin Boldly to be a delightful surprise. It was not daunting nor was it intimidating.  It was an easy read in the sense that the stories are engaging and each chapter takes you on a new journey.  I found that I could identify with the author and gained some insight on grace.

For as far back as I can remember I have struggled with feelings of guilt, shame, and worthlessness when I messed up.  I couldn't imagine how God could forgive me since I could not forgive myself.  For the most part, I have been a rule follower my entire life.  On the scale of mess ups, mine aren't huge. The statement that struck me, that had me nodding my head in agreement, was "When I understood, in God's grace, that there was nothing - not a thing - I could do to make God love me any less or any more, when I understood that there was nothing wrong or right about who I am in God's eyes, that I'm just loved, I started to live. Boldly."  We are sinners, we are going to mess up but we need to believe in God's grace and accept the grace that is given.  We need to "live this life."

Thanks Jessica for the opportunity to read something I would normally pass over.  

Who Doesn't Love Free Stuff

Christmas Giveaway Stocking 120x240
Starting today and each day for the rest of November,  5 minutes for mom is doing three weeks of giveaways.  Head on over and check it out!


FYI: New Family Online Network

Phil Vischer the creator of Veggie Tales will launch a new online network with games and videos that are family friendly with a  focus on the bible and Christian values.  You can sign up for a free one month trial after that month the cost is $2.99/month for access to the network.

The official launch date is tomorrow but there are games and videos up now.  Morgan, Landon, and I explored the network a little bit this evening and they loved the games and the video.


Thankful Month

Last year, I joined in with Leah over at South Breeze Farm for a Giving Thanks Challenge during the month of November.  

I am jumping on the bandwagon again! Feel free to join in on the fun!



Halloween Highlights:
- trick or treating
- warm weather - no coats, hats or mittens needed
- getting to see and enjoy costumes because it was so warm
- seeing neighbors on their porches handing out candy and visiting with the kids
- watching how excited our older neighbors were to see all the kids
- hearing Mauryn's sweet "tick or teat" 

Morgan: Boise State Fan 
(it is getting harder each year to find appropriate costumes for girls in the 8-12 year range, but we did get a few ideas for next year -phew)
Landon: Swash buckling pirate
Mauryn: Chicken
Getting ready to go
Trick or treat
Off to find more "cannies"
My bag is getting a little heavy
The pirate seems to be loosing his costume as we go along
Landon, Cowgirl Amiah (neighbor), Morgan, Cowboy Cooper (neighbor), Mauryn - we tired poor baby Cooper out!

Hope you all had a wonderful night of trick or treating!