My Quiet Life.

Make it your ambition to lead a quiet life and attend to your own business and work with your hands... 1 Thes. 4:11

I've found my life to be rather simple and quiet since Henry was born. Not that Henry is quiet, per say, but life is slow. Things are simple and usually close to home.

My boys nap in a staggered pattern, as I mentioned last week, which keeps us at the house for most of the day.

The lie that's thrown my way is that I should be doing more. The enemy (he seeks to steal, kill & destroy) would want to rob this season of its joy and simplicity by comparing me to other people who are in different seasons of life.

It is but for such a short season. the Lord is teaching me the beauty of my quiet home life:

Sitting and waiting for the garbage truck to come on Wednesday mornings.

Building with blocks.

Playing with the water hose in the backyard.

Singing ABC's and clapping along for the 20th time that day.

These are precious times and I sense God's delight in those moments. He is in everything, big and small.

I love the book, Little Women, now more than ever.

I'll try and be what he loves to call me, 'a little woman,' and not be rough and wild; but do my duty here instead of wanting to be somewhere else. -Jo, Little Women

Don't you feel that it is pleasanter to help one another, to have daily duties which make leisure sweet when it comes, and to bear and forbear, that home may be comfortable and lovely to us all? - Mother, Little Women


Our Entertainment Committee.

Elliot is extremely entertained and amused by Henry. This makes my heart happy. Sure, we have plenty of moments of, "Mine!" but sometimes we get these little cute moments, too. These are the ones that I record.


Clogged Tear Ducts.

Elliot is currently eight months old.

Since he was born, he has had a clogged tear duct. This makes his right eye weepy and often goopy. Our pediatrician in Erie had told us that, if by the time he was 6 months old, it had not resolved, then we would be referred to an eye doctor and he would have to have surgery.

Can you see it in this picture? Your left. His right eye.

Well, with packing up and moving and graduation and general life thingies, we weren't able to get this procedure done before we left Erie. Now we're in a new city and working on finding a pediatrician.

Anyone else had this experience? I was hoping that his tear duct would resolve on its own but it hasn't yet. Any stories? Testimonials? Home Remedies? Infomercial products?


Buh-Bye Gaga.

We had a crazy-good weekend with my brother here. Gabe (or Gaga as he's affectionately known around these parts) was such a fun guest and is a top-notch uncle. Truth.

Gabe is my brother who lives in Austin. Scott, my oldest brother, also lives in Austin with his wife and two sons. Hey Ladies,
Gabe is not married.

We lived it up: we went to the playground, rode the choo-choo, went to a residents' party (where Adam and I ran in a 3-legged race), swam at my in-laws house, walked to and ate at Dutch's and made a new friend who sings in the Dallas Opera (Hey Armon!) and walked to get breakfast tacos. Whew.

In fact, we walked a lot of places. And it was quite hot to be walking. Sorry, Gabey boy.

Anyways, thanks for coming Gaga. The boys love you and so does Adam and so do I.



Uncle Gaga (gabe, my brother) is in town. Fun city! The boys love him and I will report more soon!



Something that I didn't expect to begin so early: my two boys wrestling.

I mean, after all, my Elliot is not even eight months old yet.

But here they are, Henry sitting on Elliot and Elliot laughing.
Elliot pulling Henry's hair and Henry not laughing.
Henry lying down and swimming on top of Elliot. Elliot still laughing until a foot lands in his face. Slight cry then laughs. Then back to more wrestling.

I suppose I had best get used to all this wrasslin' while raising boys.


Women Drive Well!

Yay for driving! This happened while backing out of our driveway (it is right beside our house). Yes, I hit our house. It flopped in the wind until my father-in-law kindly taped it up for me. Henry now loves to say, "Mama crash! Mama broke mirror!"

Fun times.

Adam's first day (and second day) went well.

Well, pretty well.

Well is a relative term, right?

I think he only cried four or five times (kidding).

A picture from my Lindsey's home. We were college roommates and bridesmaids and dear friends and she lives in the Fort Worth burbs. We went to visit her this afternoon. This is Elliot and her Cami (11 months). (I had a better picture, Linds, but I wasn't sure if it was okay to display her chest-al area online.)

Henry was too busy being Jekyll and Hyde to have his picture taken. We arrived and he said, "Go Home Now!" (where did now come from? I hate that word now. ) Then he refused to swim and watered all Lindsey's plants with a hose. Then he had two cookies and ran around dancing and gave Lindsey hugs. Then, he refused to leave with me, clinging to Lindsey's neck.


The New Now.

Tomorrow, Adam begins residency.

Day one.

T minus zero days.

I am more excited than sad. We will miss having him around lots but I know that he will be la-loving the Emergency Department and is excited to begin residency. I am excited to see what my life looks like. I am happy to report that we have found a church home, thank you LORD! (when you are crying for >50% of the service, it may be your new church home) and I met some lovely ladies and potential friends there today.

Tonight, after visiting with Adam's grandpa, Adam and I went to Dutch's to celebrate his great fathering abilities and had a delicious Texana burger. Ohhhhh. I would brush my teeth with one. It is so good. The bread is slightly sweet and there is beef and avocado and I can't even say anything else about this burger or else I may need to walk a few blocks and order another.

Moving on, I really really like living close to Adam's family. Two years with kids far away (1,200 miles) from family has made me appreciate the beauty of having grandparents nearby and it is delightful. Adam's mom is a teacher (aka off for the summer) and Adam's dad is retired (aka off for the year) and they are always eager to hang out with our children...even when they are in bad moods! What?! Gotta love grandparents.

I'm off. Will report tomorrow what our new now looks like.


I'm Going to Eat Up Your Cities

the title of this post is a lyric from "Too Much" by the Dave Mathews band. Fear not, I have no plans to eat your city, to date at least.

My babes are napping, Adam has gone to study and I am lying in my unmade bed checking in with the blogosphere. Hi blogosphere. We live by TCU and sometimes as I watch those young girls walking across campus, I smile and remember the sweet times I had at Baylor. Other times, I shoots pretend laser beams out of my eyes at the 19-year olds with tiny shorts on and tan, skinny legs. I mean, I love college gals and I think that it is such a special time in life, I just wish they would eat more cake and wear full-on floral mumus...is that so wrong?

Adam begins his residency on Monday. Funday! I am interested to see what our lives look like after Monday. Monday and beyond. In case you're behind, let me catch you up:

We just moved to Fort Worth because Adam is doing Emergency Medicine residency at John Peter Smith. This is a county hospital so he will see lots of cra-ra-razy stuff. In fact, 3/4ths of the babies delivered at JPS are to undocumented immigrants. Yes, he will get to see it all.

His residency is a three-year program. There are eleven other emergency medicine residents beginning with him but the hospital houses many other residency programs. Out of the 12 residents in his class, 11 are boys. Adam's residency is on a month-by-month schedule. The majority of his months will be spent in the emergency department, but other months he will be in ortho, cardiology, labor & delivery, NICU, SICU, Internal Medicine, and several other departments that I can't remember right now.

Residents do make a salary but it is much, much lower than an attending physician (read: out of residency) would make. Whew. The end.

Okay, so, as I was saying: Adam begins on Monday. I will try and remember what it was like to have the boys by myself. (I was fine, right? Wasn't I? Say yes.) I remember before Adam began medical school, my expectations were quite low for the subsequent four years. I thought that I would never see him and I prepared myself for the worst. And then it was so much better than I had thought it'd be.

I'm hoping that this is kinda like that.


Henry Speaking Bear Language

Now that Elliot has learned to crawl and Henry to say the word, "MINE!" (Where did that come from?), we've had to work a lot more on sharing and loving one another. However, I do catch a sweet moment like this a few times a day.

Here is Henry, trying to talk "baby" to Bear. I always find my phone after-the-fact to record these moments. Oh well, this'll do. Elliot really loves his big brother.


I Woke Up.

This is Henry. Hee-Hee as he calls himself.

Here he is in his little summer jammies.

Henry's new trick is staying up super late. He used to be a superstar going-to-bed kid. Lately, after we put him in bed and say prayers, he talks forever and ever. Then he starts saying, "Mama, pick-a-up. Mama, pick-a-up." I'll go in there and he'll say, "I Woe Upk." (Translation: I woke up)

Then I'll say, "You never went to sleep, Henry!"

And he'll say, "Seep o' water, peas!" (Translation: Sip of water, please)

He's so darn cute when he's doing this. He gets super charming and cuddly saying, "Hi Mama. Hi Dada. I Woe Upk." Then, we'll go get a sip of water and maybe read a quick story and back to bed.

Rinse & Repeat.


Forest Park Mini Railroad

Let me, first off, say that I need to work on taking our actual camera with us when we go places. Every photo is from our phones. Quality.

This morning, we visited our first Fort Worth church. Here my boys are:

Awww cute, right?
However, we got paged about halfway through the sermon. Henry was not doing well, poor guy. He's had lots of changes in the past two weeks! So, we loaded the boys up and went to the Forest Park Miniature Railroad. Church on the rails, if you will!

Henry talks a big game about trains but I was not sure how my Henry would do on a 45-minute train ride over bridges and under a freeway but he LOVED it. I am so glad that we gave it a shot and went to ride the choo-choo this morning. Only problem? He did not want to get off and he wants to ride it again and again and again.

Here we are:

I love that you can tell that he's saying choo-choo in this picture

Here Adam & Elliot are:

Henry is super focused. One of the words that perhaps best describes him is intense. Whether he is happy or sad or silly or focusing on his choo-choo, he is an intense child. I love him.


Texas Wall.

I am not really the creative type, although I wish that I was all artsy and cool. However, I had an idea in my head when we moved into our new rent house. I'd seen the huge walls of maps in magazines or map wallpaper, even. I liked the idea of maps. My oldest brother, Scott, hung up world maps all over his vaulted ceilings and walls when I was a kid.

Well, instead of huge world maps, I got onto Etsy and found a few Texas maps that I really thought were cute. Two were text book pages, you know the type with an oil rig representing oil country and a longhorn representing ranching country. One is a map of Texas with a heart over Fort Worth.

This one makes me laugh the most:

found here.

Then I spray painted some frames and wah-lah! Here is the final result:

Others found here, here, here & here.



You know what song is stuck inside of my head right now? In this very room...there is quite enough...love...for one like me...

If you've never heard this song, it was quite a popular wedding song in the 90's. Why is it in my head right now? Sometimes I fear that having children is making me weirder and weirder. Soon I'll have wadded up kleenexes in the pockets of my scottish terrier cardigan and wear thimbles out and about (I don't sew).

I am glad that I married someone else really weird. I didn't always know that Adam was weird because we were both trying to be a little normal and cool when we met each other. However, we often have moments where we'll be doing something so odd and then one of us will say, "We are so weird."

One thing that Adam and I immensely enjoy is swimming. Not like swimming laps. Like swimming like we are kids. Sure, swimming with our babies is fun. But when they are napping, we jump into Adam's parents' pool and act like 8-year olds. We race, we try to balance on rafts, we dive for things and try to catch objects thrown as we jump into the pool. I think that swimming is one of those things that never gets old and makes you feel like a kid.


The Zoo!

Currently, I am chillaxing at my in-laws house while Henry and Adam play out back and Elliot takes a nap. This is nice. Time to report:

We made a last-minute decision to head to the zoo on Wednesday afternoon. Because it was last minute, we were completely unorganized and unprepared. Adam carried Henry for almost two hours since we hadn't brought a stroller and it was quite crowded (half-price Wednesdays!) and I was sweating like crazy in the heat with Elliot on my back.

Despite those minor setbacks, it was amazing. Adam got us season passes (completely worth it if you visit the zoo 4 times a year or more, which I plan to) and the amphibian/aquarium house is incredible, marvelous. Here are the only two pictures that I took of us with my phone. Next time, we are bringing the stroller (especially during the summer)!

Then, after a hot afternoon at the zoo, we got home, stripped the boys down and enjoyed our backyard and waterhose.


Nap Lockdown

Nap lockdown is very different than the phenomenon known as love lockdown, made infamous by Kanye West. Behold:

Now that we are settled into our new place, life has slowed down and a new schedule is emerging. Elliot is 7 months old. He is wanting to take two decent naps a day. Henry is 2. He needs 1 nap a day. So far, I'm seeing that the following is their natural tendency. Elliot 10 to 11:30- nap. Henry: 12 to 2ish nap. Elliot: 2 to 3:30 nap. Bedtime: 7ish. (sometimes earlier for Elliot, later for Henry). This is what their little bodies are wanting to do. This puts me on nap lock-down, though, which goes against all my anti-cooped-up tendencies.

Maybe it's best this way. I mean, I do get to spend individual time with each boy with the current nap lockdown sched. We can get out early on and all go to the playground, which is nice and cooler in the morning. Mama just had to adjust and do what's best for her kiddos. I can get Elliot to take a 30 to 45 minute nap on the fly in case we need to be on the road but, otherwise, will probably stick close to home most of these summer days during nap lockdown.

Luckily, my in-laws have two cribs, a pool, and live only 25 minutes away. I imagine we'll spend a few summer days at their place, too.


Graduation 2011.

With all the moving and hoop-la, Adam's graduation got a little swept under the blog-rug. I was so glad that in the midst of packing boxes and chasing babies, we were forced to stop for a couple of hours and attend a ceremony to celebrate his becoming a physician!

Last Sunday (the 29th) was the day and there was an orchestra playing and it was a really nice ceremony...lots of pomp and circumstance, which was fitting. I was so proud of Adam as he walked across that stage and received his diploma and was hooded. He has worked his butt off these past four years- studying and working hard but always making his family a priority. I really admire him and I'm so proud of him.

The boys weren't at the ceremony (it lasted over 2 hours) but we had our babysitter, Katie, come drop the boys off after the ceremony so that we could get a couple of pictures with Adam in his fancy gown & hood. Go Dr. Daddy! We love you.


Texas Licenses.

Sometimes when I'm at the beginning of the 3,429 step process of obtaining Texas drivers' licenses, I take a look at these pictures and avoid that gross mess.

My Pennsylvania license expired on May 31, 2011. And although I had just landed in Texas the previous day, I couldn't get a new one because my social security card was in the big yellow moving truck driving south.

Elliot loves sucking his bottom lip.

So, since I have an expired out-of-state license, I will be taking my written and driving test. (this same thing happened to me when I changed my name after getting married- my Louisiana license had expired and I was getting a Texas one. The test was harder at 22 than at 16. I should probably study since I'm 28 now.)

So, car inspections, registration & titles switched to Texas, and then my written and driving test! I hope I pass. And then we're like Wait! Where is our marriage license for insurance purposes. Uh-oh. Better order another one.


Front Porch Chillin.

This was the scene today as my Mama drove away. We are on our own, on our own in Fort Worth (well, sort of...I mean, Adam's parents live 25 minutes away.) Okay, so we are on our own in our little rent house. We spent the morning with our two snotty-nosed boys (literally: they have colds) at the playground at Tillery Park. Tillery Park is a community-built playground and I love it! It is quite close to our house and the playground equipment is phenomenal- so imaginative with lots of little houses and pretend-play areas in addition to the slides and swings.

The boys spent their afternoons in two baby pools in the backyard. That's the way we roll when it's hot. Bring on the water hose. Adams' parents came by and we were able to run out to Target and Dutch's for a quick bite. Let me tell you, after living 1200 miles away from family, I am loving having family nearby. It is wonderful and amazing and, Lord, help me not to ever take it for granted.


Hello Fort Worth!

The welcome committee- Powers
(he currently resides with my wonderful in-laws)

After a marathon week of packing, graduation, moving across the country, unpacking whilst staying with my in-laws and entertaining two darling babies, we are here in our little home spending our first night!

My mom, my MIL & I flew with Henry and Elliot to Fort Worth on Monday while the men-folk drove the big yellow truck & co. across the miles from Pennsylvania to Texas. I had no idea that we wouldn't be spending the night in our new home until Saturday but it took quite a while to get everything put away, set up & presentable. But it was worth it when Henry walked into his new house today and all his familiar choo-choos and stuffed animals were right there.

Listen up, party people: moving with kids is a different ball game. I have no clue what we would've done without my in-laws living in Weatherford! We were able to stay there, keep Henry happy & secure while all the unpacking was happening 30 minutes away. Plus, my in-laws & my Mom were around to help with the kids. This process would've been crazy factorial (oh yes!) without them.

We got our internet hooked up today so I'm ready to report on the new adventures here in Fort Worth. The most pressing item on which I'm needing advice is this: where can Adam & I get some amazing custard/ice cream?