Tuesday, March 04, 2014
I have calmed down from the slight emotional mess I was late this afternoon....it always seems to happen right before dinner that my brain get overloaded, the girls go a little crazy and I wish I could fast forward to bedtime; not just theirs, but mine too :)
Other than that hour or so, it was a really good day.
It started at 6:45, like every weekday. As the girls were getting ready for school, I got up to make their lunches. Daniel's fleece pj pants just happened to be laying out and they looked really cozy, so on a whim, I put those on. I haven't taken them off since :) They may be my new pant of choice for the rest of the pregnancy!
The morning was super productive. I babysat our tenant's one year old boy, and he and the younger two girls played so well all morning. The girls were acting like puppies and barking, and he just followed them around giggling at them. It gave me a chance to scrub my kitchen clean (which felt amazing to get done!), and to sew a bunch for Little Lily.
By the time the girls got home from school at 2:45, I had hit my wall. Energy, gone. I made them a strawberry smoothie as a snack, we went outside for 20 minutes, then did pretty much nothing until supper time. In fact, I had so little energy that I didn't even want to make supper...so I made a frozen pizza and cut up a cucumber instead.
About half an hour before bedtime, Myka decided that she wanted to make a "surprise" for me in her room. I didn't mind because I know when she says that it means that she is going to clean it...which she did :) Danica came running out about 20 minutes later saying, "mom, you can come in now!" I walked in and Myka jumped out and yelled "surprise"! and then...."how do you like it mom? I thought you would be proud."
It was awesome. And as a result of being so proud of her room, she and Danica went to bed amazingly! I wish every night could be like that, but I'll take the occasional one quite happily :) It's like she's making up for the three years or so that bedtime was a very unhappy struggle each night.
There was really no huge point to this post...just writing down some moments to keep as memories really....and enjoying the quiet moment to write :)
And just a touch of humour to end Tuesday with!
Thursday, February 27, 2014
Is cabin fever hitting anyone else's house hard? We live in the north, we know that every February this will happen, and yet the feeling still hits every single year. We are tired of making comfort food and eating the "in season" apples, oranges and bananas. We are ready to BBQ and eat watermelon now! We are tired of bundling up to go outside, we are ready for flip flops. Most of all, we are ready to kick the kids outside so they stop sinking into the cycle of whining and fighting with each other, and quit "hurricaning" their rooms every day!
Despite the slow descent into insanity, there have been some pretty cute moments around here lately.
Just this morning I decided to take the kids out one more time before the forecasted sub zero weekend hits. I took the younger two to the pool while the older two were at school. It ended up being so much fun! It was really quiet there, which was nice. I put a life jacket on them and handed them each a pool noodle, and we kicked around the pool for almost two hours. The warm water also took away some of the soreness I'm starting to get with the pregnancy.
Last night I had a sweet moment with Tegan. I was dealing with morning sickness, and she came in to check on me. After a few minutes of looking concerned, she said, "when you were pregnant with me, did I make you this sick mom?"
I told her that no, I was only sick for about 14 weeks with her, but I would have been sick every day of my pregnancy if it meant I still got to meet her. It wouldn't have mattered. She got the biggest smile on her face and looked so relieved as she hugged me. I often forget just how tender her little heart is...we are so blessed by her :)
Daniel decided to make the most of the rest of the winter with the girls and introduce them to one of his favorite pastimes...snowboarding. He found board and gear for the older three girls and they have had so much fun learning about it this week! I absolutely love watching them out in the yard. There have been a couple nights this week where I'm lucky that they came in for dinner at all I'm sure!
Addison and Tegan are venturing into the creative world this winter as well. Thanks to some friends at school, they have taken up finger knitting recently and they both love it! Grandma Steckly also recently sent them a rainbow loom to make bracelets. Limiting video game time is always a struggle around here, but between the crafts and the snowboarding, those two have been keeping nice and busy lately, and I love that!
On that note, I hope everyone else is coping alright with the inevitable cabin fever...and if anyone has any other suggestions to make it through the next three months with a shred of sanity in tact, I am always open to suggestions!
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Saturday, February 22, 2014
Can I just say how much I have missed my little business?
I love so many things about it and am glad to be back at my sewing machine, creating cute towels for sweet babies :)
*note...I typed out this post 4 days ago, and it all got deleted somehow before I could publish it...sorry for the delay!!
Our household is pretty full, and will only be getting more so very soon, so Little Lily will be running just a little differently this time. I hope everyone understands! Here's a few things that will be different, at least for the next while...
1. One of the reasons I shut down last year is that I was having trouble keeping up with orders because I was only sewing the towels as they were ordered. This time I will only be putting up for sale the towels that are already sewn and ready to ship. The plus side to this is that when you place an order it will be shipped promptly. The downside is that if I sell out, I'll be closing for a short amount of time while I restock.
2. For the time being, swaddlers won't be available. However I will be getting them as soon as I possibly can, because I love them! Right now my product line will include a 30x30 inch hooded baby towel, a 35x35 inch toddler towel, and washcloths.
3. I send shipments 2-3 days a week, on the days that I venture the 20 minutes to town :) if you need something rushed, you can let me know and I will do what I can to make it happen.
4. Last but not least, I won't be doing any wholesale orders at this time. In order to keep a good balance between business and my family, I need to keep it small and manageable :)
Thank you so much for understanding...I couldn't do Little Lily at all if it weren't for my customers and I appreciate your business and support more than you know!
I'll put updates as they come on the Facebook page, and will keep my etsy shop updated with which towels are in stock at the time.
Have a great day :)
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Thursday, February 20, 2014
My pregnancy so far has consisted of three main "symptoms".
1. Sickness. Not just morning sickness. As a matter of fact, I start out OK in the mornings and get worse as the day goes on. The first 16-18 weeks were terrible. In October I pretty much just got out of bed to make my family food and to puke. And by food I mean more delissio pizzas and peanut butter sandwiches than I care to admit. Everyone was really supportive and sympathetic, which was awesome, but I still lived in a constant pity party :) the sickness has gotten better, but unfortunately is still hanging on (it has been 1 day since my last puking incident!).
Anyhoo, that's enough about that; onto the second thing I've been dealing with.
2. I like to call it "rage and annoyance". I have been really sensitive to things that I normally wouldn't notice, by people that almost never annoy me normally. To all my friends and family, it's not you, it's me. Seriously. And I'm sorry. As for the rage...at one point in the last few months, I may have kicked the toilet in anger because the seat was loose (again). I know...super productive with no amount of crazy involved in THAT reaction, right?! I let out frustrated "Gaaahhhh"'s through gritted teeth a lot more frequently lately. Which brings us to symptom 3...and hopefully makes up for number 2.
3. When I'm not stomping around like the Hulk, I'm a blubbering mess. I cry for any reason at all, but my girls are a huge source of waterworks for me lately. All I have to do is look at one of them for a few seconds and think about how much I love her and I tear right up.
Today is a good example. This morning Danica woke up and said, "mom, my blankie smells. Can we give it a bath?" So we went to the laundry room to toss it in. I sat down on the floor to load the washer (because that's what I do now), and we started a load of laundry. As soon as it was in, she climbed onto my lap and threw her arms around my neck. Instantly time stood still as I noticed every detail...the way her arms felt around my neck, the way she buried her face right in, the smell of her "bedhead" hair, and the softness of her fleece pajamas. In an attempt to make the hug last a little longer, I squeezed just a bit tighter and told her I loved her. The thought raced through my head, "I don't ever want this to end." And continued....how quickly it will end. I love all of the stages that my girls are at right now, but hugs like that from the older girls are a bit more rare these days. That moment stayed with me throughout the day, and all of the thoughts I had surrounding it could write an entire blog post by itself, but that is for another time.
Then tonight, after a day of feeling tired but still trying to get things done, I had reached the exhausted point and was ready for a quiet house. I told the girls that if they got their pj's on quickly that Addison would read them a story (she had offered :)). I recently bought them a Jr. Bible, and it has quickly become their favorite book. Those bible stories are pretty action packed! Lol. Listening to her read to them and seeing how content they were was enough to make me tear up yet again....and to let them continue for an extra 15 minutes past their bedtime :)
I am having a hard time processing this range of emotion I've been feeling, but some days, like today, I am OK with it. I think maybe it's good to slow down and enjoy the little things for what they truly are...and I don't think it's possible to thank God one too many times for allowing us this time together. In between the frustrating and patience trying times as a mom of young children are tucked away all of the special little moments that will be over all too soon. Today I squeezed my little girl tight because she was sad that she had to wait an hour to see her blanket again...but in 10 years from now, a hug from that same little girl may be because of a fight with a friend, or a hard day at school.
Ahhhh, see? Sappy! I can't help it, and it's probably only going to get worse over the next few months....but bear with me friends, because I'm OK with it :)
Thank you so much God, for the blessing of my family. I had no idea how full my heart could be until you blessed me with Daniel and our daughters.
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Wednesday, February 05, 2014
When people hear that I have four daughters, I often get the question, "do you have anyone who helps you?"
It makes me smile a bit. If I had four toddlers I am sure I would be begging for help, but with the stages in life our girls are at, I feel like we are in a "sweet spot", if that makes sense. The older two are old enough to wash and dress themselves, they entertain themselves and each other well, and they are eve learning to help prepare some meals and clean in ways that are helpful to me. During the day, they are gone to school, and I'm a mom of two for most of the day.
The younger two are also moving past the really "needy" toddler stage and are becoming very good at playing well together and learning to do things that are helpful.
So, in conclusion of all of that, most days are pretty peaceful around here. We have found a schedule that works for us and I am learning to keep our activities to a level where I don't stress myself out trying to do too much.
HOWEVER, there is always an exception!! I know you didn't think I would end this post with a "my kids are perfect, the end", right?!
We have days like today. I have found that the days that I am the most worn out, the most irritated at the girls, and the most angry in general are the days that are full of bickering.
Today I got a real treat; it started at 6:22am....23 minutes before my alarm went off. I was woken by Danica barging into my room crying that Myka wouldn't let her have the big pink pony to play with.
"Gaaaah! It's barely even morning, you shouldn't even be awake!" I sobbed.
Ok, I didn't sob. I solved the problem like a mature adult...by telling them I was going to go take all their ponies unless they worked out a solution quickly.
By then we were all up for the day, and it didn't get any better for a long time. Danica had clearly woken up much too early and was so sensitive all day, bursting into whiny tears at EVERYthing! And Myka saw the opportunities to harass her sister and RAN with them, annoying her at every stinkin' chance she got.
I don't really have a happy ending to this post. It was not one of those days that started terrible and then ended with happy hugs all around. It did end in hugs, prayers and kisses, but also with a large measure of pure relief that all I had to do was unload and reload the dishwasher and I could go to bed too.
And here I am, sitting in bed blogging out my day, and the kitchen is still a mess. That's right, the day of bickering has worn me out to the point that I justified not doing the 15 extra minutes of work. I like to think that with the extra sleep i'll get because of it, I will burn through my chores like superwoman tomorrow anyway, so it should all even out :p
Have a great night everyone..I hope we all get deep, wonderful sleeps!
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Friday, January 31, 2014
When I was pregnant with Danica is when I first really noticed it; someone in public would say something like, "wow, three girls! Do you know what this next one is?" I would reply, "it's another girl " with a smile and often the reply was something along the lines of a disappointed "oh", or a sympathetic "awe". One time I even got an "I'm sorry!". The doozy was the older lady at a craft show that blurted out, "I guess it's time to bring in the milkman, hey?"
When I got pregnant again, I knew it would happen again. That's part of what made it easier to keep the baby a secret for the first trimester...because if you know me at all, you know I have never been able to do that before!
To be honest, Daniel and I were pretty surprised to find out that we were having our fifth daughter in a row...I mean, what are the odds!? BUT, I'm starting to sense a viewpoint that people may or may not think we have about it.
When I announced the sex of this baby, I got many happy congratulations on Facebook and from our friends and family, which was wonderful and we love how happy you all are for us! But out there in the real world, where people don't know us as well and don't mind giving their unfiltered opinion, it's been a bit different.
So to clarify to those people that I'll never see again and who will never read this post....we are not continuing to have children as some sort of "lottery" that we will play until we finally get our long awaited boy.
"I guess the sixth time will have to be the charm" is one comment I've received recently that stuck with me.
I read an article awhile ago titled "The Wrong Reason To Keep Having Children" that was along those lines, and I agreed with the author wholeheartedly. It's not something we are in denial about; we are fully aware that when we get pregnant it's because we are excited to bring another child into this world, regardless of sex.
And in my honest, although biased opinion, we have "won the baby lottery" 4 times and are about to meet the fifth wonderful addition to our crazy fun crew :) We feel so blessed that we have not one, two, three or four, but FIVE opportunities to raise daughters that will add so much beauty to this world. Girls that will make other's lives better because they are generous, loving, and godly women. It's a huge order to fill, I realize that as I'm sitting here writing this with tears streaming down my face....but we are up for the challenge, and with God on our side, I'm confident that each of our girls will continue to be awesome...as awesome as I already think they are :)
Also, in my other totally biased opinion, our family has the perfect man at the helm. Nothing melts my heart quite like watching Daniel be a dad to our daughters....which is where lots of my confidence comes in. These girls are growing up knowing what a good man looks like and how he acts, and for that I am so grateful.
The only thing that is stressing me out about having another girls is picking another girl name! Lol
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Sunday, January 26, 2014
We've had a nice week here around the Steckly house. First, it's Daniel's days off, so we have had lots of time with him, which the girls love! We decided to be a little bit productive too, and finished a project that we've been procrastinating since August; installing our shower so we don't have to take baths all the time! I had finished grouting the tile last week (never. Again.), so this week, we put silicone around the tub and installed the shower head. It's so wonderful, and the shower curtain makes our bathroom look just a little more "done" :)
The weather has been absolutely glorious this week, which means we've been able to spend lots of time outside too! A few days ago it was +15 here and I had to carry a crying Danica in because it was too dark to keep playing out there, but she was having fun sledding!
On Saturday I took the girls to the outdoor rink at the school while Daniel worked on the house. They loved it. Danica especially loved that she got to skate, even if it was the toddler skates, with two blades :)
We found out the sex of the baby this week too, which was a bit of a surprise, but I suppose it really shouldn't have been, right? Lol
Speaking of the baby, I can't believe I'll be 22 weeks tomorrow! As much as I've been wanting to enjoy this pregnancy, I have found the most of it has been about just surviving another day with morning sickness. Weeks 6-15were absolutely terrible. For most of October and November I only really left my bed when I had too. My house was a mess and my family ate way more delissio pizza and pbj sandwiches than I would like to admit. They were all really great though. Addison and Tegan would get their own breakfast and get ready for school...I jast had to toss together a lunch for them. myka and Danica were really good at playing together while ran between the bathroom and my bed. I would just leave my door open so I could watch them :) and Daniel did everything he could for me when he wasn't working. They are such blessings :) Unfortunately the morning sickness didn't end at 13 weeks like it's "supposed to" (lol)....and I'm still struggling with it to a point. It has gotten Much, much better this week though! Now that the sickness is dwindling and the baby is moving more, I find that I am finally starting to enjoy it more. Today the girls even got to feel the baby kick! It's still tiny kicks, but I thought it was so cool that they got to feel it.
Now...my computer charging cord broke, so I am having to blog from my phone. For that reason, all my recent favorite photos are at the end of the post and; you'll have to excuse any spelling or grammatical errors. They are much harder to catch on here!
Have a great week ! everyone
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Friday, January 17, 2014
1. Keeping the pillowcases on the pillows: Or any of the bedding on the beds for that matter! Forts, I can understand, so the blankets being dragged off the bed never "really" bothers me, but when I pictured tidying up with my kids in the evenings, putting the pillowcases back on all of the pillows in the house never really crossed my mind. I guess I was just being too unimaginative though, because apparently pillow cases are great fun. You can carry loads of toys in them to dump on the living room floor, you can drag your kitty around for "rides" that he absolutely adores, or you can even put it over your head and be totally proud of the fact that you can walk around your house without seeing anything! (That one almost never ends well). To sum up, pillowcases are useless on pillows. They are practical objects that will make you wonder why you even bother to buy any actual toys in the first place.
2. Containers of water...why is my house ALWAYS wet?: As if it's not enough for three year olds to climb up on the counter by herself to get a glass of water. No no, she needs to fill four or five just to make sure she's got enough. Some of them she leaves on the counter, some she (and by "she" I mean either of the preschoolers in our home) leaves in the middle of the floor, while others make it into the bedroom and are used to fill up any toy that can be possibly used as a container. I am almost always the one to find the cups left in the middle of the floor, and I am almost always carrying something or in a rush, so instead of seeing it and picking it up, I kick it and spray water all over my leg and the entire room.
If there is not an actual cup of water on the floor, there is just puddles of wet. Mystery puddles, I like to call them. Part of the mystery is how I always find one within 45 seconds of putting on fresh socks. Side note: incidents like that are the main reason that have switched from wearing socks in the house to wearing flip flops.
3. Socks: Any mother will tell you how hard it is to keep kids' socks matched up (if you don't have trouble with this, we can't be friends anymore), but I never realized all the weird places I would FIND socks! Does this happen to anyone else? I find them in the couch cushions, under the couch, anywhere where toys are kept, in the boot room, in the kitchen cabinets and pantry, and outside lying around the yard.
But hey, the bright side is that then I have piles of socks to match together and fills my girls' drawers with, right? Wrong. Basketfuls of socks (okay, one basketful) lying in my laundry room, and not one stinkin' pair in the bunch. This goes on all winter, during the socks' hibernation season.
And by some strange miracle, throughout the summer I manage to match most of them up and begin each fall with full drawers of socks. It's the best 2 weeks of the year.
Maybe one day I'll figure out this kid thing. Then again, maybe I won't, but every day I'm learning something new, and that's always fun, right?