Monday, April 30, 2012

10 Things We Did This Weekend

Because everything is more fun in a list. Right? It makes my life seem more exciting, at least to me. :)



1. It all began with Friday night dinner. Ah, can't kick off a weekend right without it. We spent the evening with Eric's parent's, eating and playing at their house. The girls always look forward to it!

2. On Saturday we celebrated my grandpa's birthday. The weather held out long enough during the afternoon so that Evie and Grace were able to run off some steam outside with their cousins. They had so much fun, I felt like a big grinch when we had to tell them it was time to go. Eric had been up since 4:00am to work at the radio station that morning, and he was pooped!

3. Later that night we had a hankering for some mostaccioli and errands to run, so over the mighty Mississippi we went. In the pouring wind and rain. I thought our little car was going to flip right on off of the bridge, sending me to a premature death. I do not like driving in storms. The End.

4. We stuffed our faces at P'Sghetti's and discussed topics we deemed inappropriate on a first date. I never laugh harder than with my own husband. :D Unfortunately for P'Sghetti's, the storms knocked their credit card machine out and they had to take information manually - you know, the old fashioned way. We got a call the next day saying that NONE of the cards from that night went through, and until they can get a hold of every single customer, they served a whole lotta people for free. Poor P'sghetti's. :(



5. I learned that I have been giving the wrong cell phone number to every person, business, and form I have filled out for the past...oh I don't know...year. While buying a gift this weekend the sales clerk asked for my phone number. I happily gave it to her, and Eric informed me that half of my numbers were mixed up. Seriously? No wonder why I never won any Disney vacations! Now I'll never know... :)

6. We had another great Sunday morning at church. The girls LOVE the new church building. Love it. They'd rather run the halls than play with toys in the nursery, haha.

7. We ate lots of barbecue and did some front porch swinging. (See every picture in this post.) Ah, Sunday. The day of rest.

8. Eric finally took care of the one thing pushing him to the verge of crabby all weekend and mowed the grass. If our grass line is half an inch taller than everyone else's Eric starts to itch. And since his schedule is so full, sometimes he has to go a day or two longer than he would like before scratching that itch. I can't even tell you what a changed man he was when the grass was mowed. It's all he talked about for the rest of the day. :)

9. There was a trivia night hosted by our church that I really wanted to go last night, but we have SO MUCH going on this week that requires a babysitter that we felt bad asking our parents to watch the kids again. I hope they raised some more money for the Thailand folks! So we took the girls for a walk, where I thought I was going to pass out. For real.

10. I came home and puked my guts up. Yay pregnancy. Meanwhile, Eric used his steady hand to dissect and repair my iPhone. It was not an easy chore this time. But now I am back in business! So if you are among the lucky who have the RIGHT phone number (I'm still not sure what it is now) you can get a hold of me once again. ;)


I crashed hard when my head hit my pillow last night. I'm a little less sick and little more energized than I was a few weeks ago, but all that has amounted to so far is me overdoing it and then regretting it later, haha. I just can't wait to feel normal again. I'm in the second trimester officially and I'm still having the occasional date with my head in the toilet, which is discouraging, let me tell ya. Still, it could be much worse! I keep reminding myself to just soak it all in and enjoy it as much as I can.

We get to check up on baby Robert tomorrow afternoon, and I can't wait! Please say a prayer that everything is still going smoothly for us. I think there is always just a little worry until I hear that healthy heartbeat every time.

Life is pretty good right now. :) We have so many blessings to be thankful for, that is for sure. Tonight is Eric's LAST accounting class ever. Hallelujah! Good luck on your final, m'dear! It will be really nice to have a break for a few weeks before summer classes start. We still haven't settled on a mini-cation destination, though we've gotten even more suggestions. Haha. Other than that, we're just swinging along....


Friday, April 27, 2012

Confession Friday 4-27

Evelyn has this new habit of repeating the end of everything she says. It would be kind of annoying, except that when she repeats her phrases it actually sounds like she's trying to say something really profound. Like yesterday, when she said, "If I get hurt, I get hurt." Hmm, yes. That is deep. Or my favorite as we were on a family walk this week. "When we build together, we build together." <-- Plaque worthy. Now if only we could simmer down on the "When I need a snack, I need a SNACK!" and "I'm crying, because I'm cryyying."

***

I confess that I am totally overwhelmed by all of the responses I got about our mini-vacation yesterday. So many of you offered suggestions here, or on Facebook, or via private message or email...I don't know if the decision is easier or harder now, haha.

I confess that I have been without a cell phone for a LONG time. (Like, a whole week.) And...well. I don't really miss it all that much. Other than the computer, technology doesn't really do it for me. Which is probably why....

I confess that last night while on our walk, I felt like I belonged in the dark ages when Eric was fiddling with his phone and saying something about having to program his new shoes. Excuse me - what? There's a computer chip in your shoes? What next?


Thanks to Confession Friday, this will never be a problem. :)


I confess that my bellybutton has "popped" already, and it's causing a bit of confusion for my still-nursing second child. Ha. I'm not elaborating on that one.

^^Evelyn is convinced she can tickle the baby through my bellybutton. :)

I confess that my current unchecked email count is: 16,005. No comments, Heather Rahn. It's all junk, anyway. :)

I confess that I have not showered alone for three days after one mistake of letting Evie in after she begged and begged. Now BOTH of my children think the sound of running water means - woohoo! Party in the shower with mommy! If I don't let them in Evie stands outside of the door yelling "trick or treat!" and Gracie screams until I cave. I know you're so jealous of my life.

I confess that I want new shoes and a new purse really bad. I don't need either, but I want both. Oh, Mother's Daaaay....

I confess that I have a doctor's appointment next week, and I'm secretly hoping I can talk the doctor into an early gender check. Hehe. I'll be almost 16 weeks, so...it could happen!



I confess that I love when Eric compliments my mediocre cooking. I'm not a cook, and I'll be the first to admit it. But he's just so darn sweet.

I confess that our family is opening a new business - totally Evie's idea. It's called "Froggy Pizza." And when you enter, Evelyn will welcome you with, "Come on in. Want some froggy pizza? We've got lots of chairs. Lots of plates." So look for it. Froggy Pizza - coming soon.

I confess that while trying to google an issue we're having with one of our commodes, I nearly (as in, did a little) pee in my pants while reading other people's descriptions of the same problem : "Our crapper chugs." "Noisy toilet sounds like it wants to leave the station." "The kids yell "all aboard!" before they flush." Oh, google...you never disappoint me.

And now my daughter needs help making her play-dough into little snakes. 

Hope you have a great weekend.

Yay Friday. 

(Insert smile here.)

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Mini Vacay. Yes, Please.

Alright, friends. I could really use your help. Anyone, please...if you can help me, I would be ever so grateful. (Bats eyelashes...smiles sweetly....)

Truth be told, I don't get out much. Eric and I are so so lucky to have amazing parents who will babysit for us whenever we need a date night, which I am finding we get to have more than the average couple. So believe me, I'm not complaining in the least bit! However...I don't believe we have had an entire night to ourselves now in almost three years. I'm trying to rack my brain and remember a time one or both of our kiddos spent the night somewhere, and the only thing I'm coming up with is the two nights Evie stayed with my parents while I was in the hospital with Grace. (Some vacation! Haha.) And for most of those three years we haven't even had our own BED. Yes, Evie still finds herself a cozy spot between Eric and me every night.

Now we're adding baby #3 into the mix, and guess what? Mama wants an adults-only trip before it's another three years for us to take the chance! And Eric agrees. It won't be a big thing...I don't think I could spend too long alway from my babies, anyway. But a good two or three nights away will be enough to make me happy. Here's the catch: we obviously are nickel and diming it right now, and we're on a budget. :)

Eric's strict instructions are these: We can go anywhere I can come up with, but we have to keep it under $500. Yeah. I don't disagree that we shouldn't spend too much on this little getaway, but it's been tough trying to find places that will keep us under our budget. (Everything has to stay under $500 - lodging, food, gas money, etc.) I'm kind of stumped!

Here are MY requirements:


Hehe. Yes, I know I am dreaming. (But believe me, I've priced it!)

What I really really want is to get a tan - like from the real life sun. I'm all about the vitamin D and not being a pasty pregnant lady all summer long. So any place with a nice pool will work just fine, too. ;)

The thing is, I'm lost on ideas. If we go further away then it will probably be a three night trip to justify the drive time...but three nights in almost any hotel will take a HUGE chunk of the budget right away. Like...way more than half. I'm about to pull my hair out trying to figure this out!

So do you know of any fun destinations close to home? Or do you have a great secret place that you love to go on the cheap? Please spam me with any ideas!

Eric and I would like to go on our little trip about the third week of June - after Evie's birthday, but before I'm big-as-a-house pregnant. I'm sure Eric wouldn't mind if there was more to do than just lounge around poolside, since he's more of a "get lost in a museum for half a day" kind of guy. :) But I'm not picky. As long as I get a little time alone with my main squeeze, I'm good to go.

I've been flipping through honeymoon photos, and it makes me want to leave right now! (Sigh...our first and LAST married vacation before becoming parents.)




We honeymooned in Charleston, SC. It was perfect for us! The beach, history, romantic getaways...we highly recommend it. :)

So I don't know much about this trip yet except that it IS going to happen. We WILL go somewhere...anywhere. If I have to give up my left pinky toe, I totally will. Let me know if you have any favorite spots that we can check out! If you can give us a great idea and we ultimately choose it, I'll bring you back a souvenir! :D

And if you don't know of any places, are you taking a vacation this year? Where are you going?? I'd love to live vicariously through you, haha. 


Wednesday, April 25, 2012

That's Not Good Enough!

How honest would you say you are?

I have often mentioned the book, "The Millionaire Next Door" which is a study on who the average millionaire in America is and how they came to be successful financially. It's a great eye opener to the idea that living frugally for a little while can pay off big time down the road! The same author took this idea a step further and wrote "The Millionaire Mind." In this book, he only study deca-millionaires, those with at least 10 million dollars, and they had to make at least $750,000 a year for an extended amount of time. This is of course a very very small population - the top quarter of the top one percent earners in America, to be exact.

The author wanted to know what all of these people had in common. What made them so special? He interviewed not only the millionaires themselves, but also their friends, their employees, their neighbors, random people on the street...to see what characteristics these folks possessed. In the end he came up with a list of 38 character traits that came up over and over again in his interviews. He put the traits in order, with number one being the trait that came up every single time, in 100% of the people he studied.

Without exception, he found that all of these super successful people had over-the-top, out of this world, fanatical levels of integrity. These people were known for being honest - not only with their friends, but with those they do business with and even with those they have power over. What really intrigues me is the fact that people who didn't even know these millionaires personally knew their reputation for being honest and were quick to share that information when asked. I guess a good reputation travels fast, too. :)

So does integrity equal success? Is it just a coincidence? Perhaps having integrity doesn't automatically make you successful, but on the other hand...can you be truly successful without it? Something to chew on this morning. :)


Lesson Eight: That's Not Good Enough!

Dave shared the information above in the lesson that we had last night, "That's Not Good Enough!" In this lesson we learned how to get big bargains and how to haggle and deal to get a good price. It's a light and fun lesson filled with practical information that can save ANY person money if they are only willing to do it. :)

In our culture there seems to be a stigma attached to bargaining - especially in big box stores. We see a price, we pay it. It's embarrassing to ask for a deal. (At least for some people.) But this is a really strange way of thinking according to the entire rest of the WORLD. Bartering and haggling is a way of life almost everywhere. And once you get good at it, it can actually be kind of fun. 

One of the points that Dave makes in this lesson is to always be truthful when trying to get a deal - hence the facts about the importance of integrity. Don't try to get a deal by saying your ailing child could really use this if you don't really have an ailing child. :) 

A major takeaway from this lesson is that "Cash is King." Walk into a furniture store or an appliance store with cash in your hands. Make it a point to take it out and count it every once in a while...and watch the sales people follow you around, haha. Having cash is a great bargaining chip, because cash is emotional...as much to you as to the people who are trying to get it from you. And it also forces you to stick to the price you want and the price you were willing to pay before you walked into the store. (No matter how good of a "deal" something is, it's not really a deal for you if you can't actually afford it.) Story after story was told of how Dave or one of his readers walked out of major businesses getting hundreds of dollars off of their purchase because they were willing to walk away with their cash and find a better deal somewhere else.

And that brings me to another great point - maintain your walkaway power. In other words, do NOT get emotionally attached to an item before you've purchased it. Sales people can smell you a mile away by your body language and tone of voice, and once they know you really want something, you've lost a lot of your bargaining power. While we may only buy a new television set once every 5-10 years or so, these people sell them every day. They know what they're doing, so you should, too. :) Stay cool, and don't talk too much. Silence is powerful. Ask a question and then do a lot of nodding. The less YOU talk, the more THEY talk, and the more they talk, the more likely you are to get a deal. I wish everyone could see this lesson for themselves, haha.

Some of us. :) Yes, we sit around on old couches and watch TV together, because we are awesome.

I love our FPU group, and last night two of our members shared a little Financial Peace "rap" with us that they wrote. Seriously, it was hil-ar-i-ous. I wish I would've gotten it on video! Jeremy and Christina, we still say you should send in a video to Dave! I was going to publish their awesome song, but I think my lyrics are in Eric's car, gosh darn it. Maybe next week. :D

Word to your mutha. 


Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Just Chatting :)

Last night Evelyn came strutting into the living room right before bedtime with a foreign object hanging out of her mouth. She popped it out and proudly waved it in the air. "Found my new paci!!" she said, and then put in back in. It was one of her daddy's ear plugs that he wears to bed every night. Apparently she hasn't forgotten about her pacifier just yet. :) But we're still going strong!

Oh Evelyn. She cracks me up on a daily basis, but you knew that already. Haha. Currently she is very amazed that one of her ouchies (a scab) "just disappeared!! Look mom, it's gone!" It's been gone for a week, but every time she sees that it isn't there she is astounded all over again. Oh, and my personal favorite Evie-ism, which I'm hearing almost daily now....

Whenever Grace is being particularly annoying while Evelyn is trying to do something, Evie will look at me exasperated and yell, "Mooom!! Can you put Gracie on your BOOB!??"

That one gets me every time.

If Evie were a cartoon character, she would be Ellie from "Up." :) Eric and I can't watch that movie without commenting about how similar these two are. And then we make Evelyn say, "Adventure is out there!" a million times. :D


I'm actually really excited for Evelyn to be a big sister all over again. I think she'll "get it" more this time, and she's been super helpful around the house lately. We probably spend half of our time talking about the new baby and what's going on in my belly. Speaking of babies in my belly....

I am definitely getting an occasional "tap tap" coming from inside. Eee! I think I skipped the whole "flutters" feeling. By now I know what to watch for, and I didn't want to kid myself too soon. But last Friday night while we were at the Life Network banquet I thought for sure I felt a couple of little bumps on the right side of my belly. Then yesterday while lying down on my right side on the couch I sneezed really hard and felt four or five quick little taps right after. I think I scared my kid, haha.

It's just so weird that I'm only feeling movement on one side of my stomach. I don't remember that happening before. But then again this pregnancy has been vastly different from the first two (vastly different) pregnancies before it. I have weird symptoms I've never had before. I usually get a reprieve from pimples when I'm pregnant, but I've been breaking out like a teenager with this one. My nails have been growing at an alarmingly fast rate. That has never happened before. I'm eating like a college frat boy - morning noon and night. The only thing predictable about my pregnancies are their unpredictability.

I have not had one single person send me wishes for a baby girl. :D In fact, we have one dear friend who is so convinced that we're having a boy that she has already picked up a boy outfit for us. Haha. But Eric and I still don't care either way. As long as we keep getting reports of a healthy baby we're good!

Once again I didn't have anything in particular to blog about today. It seems like we live our life in spurts of activity and then nothing happens for a while, which is exactly what's going on right now. It just feels wrong not to check in every day. But I think I'll leave it there - Evelyn is flipping through the new American Girl magazine and saying, "Wow, they are so fashion-y. Mom, I need three baby dolls!" I've been telling Evie that American Girl dolls are for big girls, and well...she's been hearing a lot about being a big girl over the past few days. I think she's connecting the dots, and I might be in a little bit of trouble.

Hehe. Later taters!

Monday, April 23, 2012

So long, weekend....

Blah. I hate the new blogger. Sorry if you love it. I hate it. (Ignore me if you don't blog, I'm sure you have no clue what I'm talking about, haha.)

So it's Monday! (Boo.) But we had a really great weekend, so I can't complain. We experienced one very monumental last in our home. I can't believe it. I thought it would be so much harder, but it wasn't. There are no longer any more of these anywhere in our household:


Our dear Evelyn is such a big girl in so many ways, but boy did she love her pacifier. It was her comfort item to fall asleep, and we never really cared if she had it so long as she wasn't walking around everywhere with it in her mouth. But after leaving her last paci at grandma and grandpa's this weekend we decided not to go out of our way to supply her with a new one. Evelyn has now had two full days and nights with no pacifier to help her sleep and nap. She definitely whined and asked for it at first, but hadn't said a word about it as of yesterday morning (until she saw this picture just now, haha.)

Since Grace never was a paci baby, it looks like we are a pacifier-free family for a little while. Whew...it's been almost three years since we haven't had to worry about where those elusive little boogers disappear to all the time. :)

On Friday evening we had a wonderful time at the Life Network banquet. The keynote speaker Shawn Carney was absolutely phenomenal. Shawn is a co-founder of 40 Days for Life, a television personality, and one of the youngest speakers for life in America today. He's 30 years old and he has four babies of his own - makes me feel normal. :)

I didn't take any pictures at the banquet, but I stalked him online and found this most recent picture of him with his last baby girl Bernadette. (Taken from the "40 Days" website) :)

If you ever get a chance to hear him speak - do it! 

And of course, one of my favorite parts of every Life Network banquet is hearing straight from one of the mamas that the organization has recently helped. It takes a lot of courage to share such a personal story, but it is such a blessing and an encouragement to be able to put a name and face (of both mom and baby - so cute!) to at least one of the many that we have prayed for and sponsored through the work of Life Network volunteers. It was a refreshing evening, to say the least. 

On Saturday I was feeling pretty great in the morning and decided it would be a good idea to take the girls out in the stroller to stop by the Thailand benefit garage sale. We found a few treasures, and after playing for a while at my parent's house afterwards, this lady was POOPED. I totally overdid it. My mom ended up giving us a ride back home, haha. But I am happy to say that the garage sale was a success, and I believe they raised about $950 for the trip! The sale will also be going on next Saturday, so if you missed it this weekend, there's still a chance. :)

Saturday evening we gathered with Eric's family to celebrate Grandma and Grandpa Robert's 59th wedding anniversary. 

Best family picture I could find on this computer. :)

We had a wonderful meal and a great time talking and letting the kids play together. Today is Grandma and Grandpa's actual anniversary, so Happy Anniversary to them!!

And then we enjoyed a lazy Sunday - my favorite kind. After a great morning in church (we've been meeting at the new church building, and I love it!) we ordered-in lunch at Eric's parent's house and then came home to take a nap! Eric had a meeting at church last night so the girls and I hung out in front of the TV. :)

While we had an excellent weekend as a family, there are so many people who we are close to that are sick or facing major health concerns right now. I sometimes carry a little guilt when things in our world seem to be going great while I know so many others are having a rough time. We're praying today especially for my dad, for our friend Kim Miller, and for several other members of our church family. We hope you all have speedy recoveries and get the answers you long to hear. 

I hesitate to say that I am starting to feel back to my "old self" again as I enter into the second trimester of this pregnancy. I definitely feel a little more energized, but the sickness still hasn't completely gone away. That leaves me feeling motivated for the first time in weeks to keep the house clean and organized, yet still unable to force my body to do it. I can't think of anything more frustrating than willing yourself to do something you just can't do. I'm hoping over the next week I start feeling even better!

Yes, I know this was all over the place. That's kind of our life at the moment. :) Now I'm going to attempt to fold some laundry. I am so behind....


Friday, April 20, 2012

Confession Friday 4-20!

Okay, I confess that I can't even figure out how to work my own camera. Somehow it got set on the timer setting and I have no clue how to get it off, haha. ANYWAY, it's a horrible picture, but the winner of the "Let Me Hold You Longer" storybook is...


Commenter #10
Meagan!
And you thought you didn't even enter, haha. 
I know where you live. ;) 

I confess that I actually enjoy the occasional dark and rainy day, like the one we're having right now. Ah...no greater excuse to move a little slower. :)

I confess that I think I'm being sent a message about my snacking. One day this week while reaching into a bag of Hershey's Hugs, it felt like something bit me HARD. When I looked into the bag there was a razor blade inside, which must have fallen from one of our kitchen cabinets. Neither Eric nor I have any clue why there are razor blades in our cabinets, but whatever -  that sucker hurt!

I confess that I have the worst luck with phones. Worst. I should just not have one. Luckily Eric knows how to fix them. (Don't bother calling me, I've committed iPhone homicide...again.)

I confess that I locked myself out of the house for the THIRD time in a week. We've lived here almost two years now, and I've never locked myself out. Three times in a week?? I think it's some kind of conspiracy...Eric thinks her name is Evie.

I confess that I nearly kill myself every night trying to put Gracie to sleep in her crib. The girls' room is such a mess right now, and guess who doesn't have the energy to clean it?

Guilty.

All the time.


I don't want to call myself a super-genius or anything...buuuut...

...I confess nothing is more annoying than when someone doesn't GET the JOKE. But slightly amusing watching their feathers get all ruffled over it. :)

I confess that I can't even make it through a walk anymore without a snack. Eric refused to let me take the entire bag of white cheddar popcorn with me last night...so I filled a giant ziploc bag instead.

I confess that I tried hiding said ziploc bag from the girls so I wouldn't have to share. Mission failed, darn it.

I confess that every time I see a bird in the road while I'm driving I'm taken back to awkward Driver's Ed with Mr. Griffin. One day while cruising the backroads, my silly little fifteen year old self BRAKED for a BIRD in the middle of the road...like, I almost came to a complete stop. *Face palm.* To which a confused Mr. Griffin muttered, "Um, you don't have stop for birds." Yes Mr. Griffin. I know that now.

I confess that it isn't fair that the chubbier I get the cuter Eric looks. Hormones!

And finally, I confess that tonight we are going to the Life Network banquet (an organization that helps women and men in crisis pregnancies) and nearly every year I get the feeling people are staring and smiling at me because they think I'm a client. Seriously, I've been pregnant at nearly every one of these things. :)

Hope you guys have a great weekend! We'll be celebrating life and marriage and love over the next couple of days...can't really think of a better way to spend our time. Adios amigos!

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Benefit Garage Sale


Attention Local Garage Sale Shoppers! :)

A small group of friends from our teeny town are leaving soon to do missions work in Thailand. Awesome! I believe they are going to be working primarily with kiddos while they are there, and we wholeheartedly support their efforts. Thank you guys for sacrificing your time to invest in others' lives! We love you!

If you're a bargain hunter and will be out and about this weekend, then make sure to stop by a benefit garage sale at:

1229 Janice Drive

On Friday and Saturday, April 20 & 21

8-6 Friday and 8 - ? Saturday

All proceeds will go towards the missions trip, and I know they would appreciate you stopping by. It's a small way to touch a life halfway around the world! Who knows - we might bump into you there. :)

***

 I'm going to take a mental health day today. :) Our internet has been out for the last hour, so now I'm all thrown off. Hope you guys have a good day - I think I'm going to take the girls out for lunch a little later. Which means I have to start getting them ready now, because this lady moves slow these days. :D See ya!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Baths and Insurance

I think we were incredibly spoiled by the weather over the past few weeks. By all normal accounts, yesterday was a beautiful 70 degree Spring day. But when we stepped out on our shaded patio yesterday afternoon to blow bubbles it was downright chilly! I think we lasted all of five minutes before we shuffled our dainty little selves back inside. And I'm so glad we did. :)

We decided to take our bubbles to the bathtub instead, and oh my goodness - ladies and gentlemen - I believe I had a breakthrough with my youngest daughter. Grace is a bit of stoic; she plays her cards close to her chest...never afraid to let us know when something is wrong, but very aware of making sure she never shows too much excitement over anything. We've blown bubbles before and Grace has shown minimal interest. But bubbles in the bathtub - holy moly!

I've never heard such a sound come from my baby girl. I was trying so hard not to laugh at her, but with every blow of the bubble wand she panted with excitement bordering on a mix between chimp and puppy dog. And she did it every.single. time. When she caught a bubble she let out a happy, "YAY!!" and when one would get away, in true Grace fashion, she would shake her fist at it and growl. Haha.

Meanwhile, big sister was trying to catch bubbles in a bowl, and I could hear her whispering to herself with every catch, "This is hilarious. " My children are my favorite entertainment. :)

So yes. Bubbles in the bathtub get a big thumbs up from us. And another new bath time favorite that we highly recommend:


Natural Kids bath time body paint by AVON. The girls received these in their Easter baskets from grandma and grandpa and these roll-on paints have been spicing up our bath time ever since. :) The colors actually show up very bright, and OH MY GOODNESS, they smell divine. We have coconut, bubble gum, watermelon, cotton candy, apple, and orange. Every single one of them are yummy - but don't eat them! I'm not gonna lie, I've seriously considered taking a bath just to use these myself.

I'm not trying to sell this stuff or anything. We just like it. :)

Now that you know all about our recent bath time shenanigans, let's talk a little Financial Peace University, shall we?


Lesson Seven: Clause and Effect

First of all, can't talk about money today without congratulating the big lotto winners who were just announced! I'm so happy and proud of Merle and Pat Butler of Red Bud who seem like very lovely folks and who have done EXACTLY what they should have with their winnings. They sought financial advice first and have not gone on a shopping spree - so good for them! This couple in their sixties wouldn't need ANY advice that I learned last night, because they will be self-insured for the rest of their lives. Lucky ducks!

Insurance. It's something we love to hate, because we're paying each month for something we HOPE we never need. And there all kinds of insurance we need to protect ourselves: from car and homeowners (or renters) insurance, to health insurance, life insurance, long-time care insurance, identity-theft insurance, and I know there's one I'm missing but I just can't think of it. :)

Whew, it's a lot to unpack. This is one of those "heavy" lessons that are really the nuts and bolts of creating a financial plan. Without getting too preachy (because honestly I don't have the time to spell it all out) if you think you can't afford insurance...you can't afford NOT to have it.  As I was sitting through our FPU class last night, guess who was right beside me? Mr. Tyler Donjon. If you've been following this blog then you know his story. Tyler is a 25 year old young man who at one time would have never dreamed anything could happen to him...until last year when he nearly lost his life after being hit by a car. Anything can happen to anyone at anytime. And you need an umbrella of insurance to protect not only you, but also the ones you love. 

I wish I could break down each type of insurance and tell you what to buy and what not to buy. I really, really encourage anyone who has questions about these types of things to find an FPU class near you and go through it. This lesson alone could save you big time money and give you big time peace of mind. If there is one message to drive home, one piece of advice I can leave you with: never buy WHOLE life insurance. It's rarely rarely rarely (like practically never) a good idea. Only take out TERM life insurance policies. Trust me. Dave prefaces this lesson by joking that he gets a lot of hate mail about this one - from insurance companies. :D He reveals the dirty little secrets with no agenda, because Dave isn't trying to sell you anything. Love that. 

Newlyweds!

From a personal point of view: When I was a 23 year old newlywed I knew nothing about insurance, but I married a nerd who wanted to make sure we were taken care of. I remember one of the very first things we did as a new couple was to sit down with an agent and make sure that we were well taken care of. If anything should happen to Eric, the girls and I are covered forever. I can't even put a price tag on that peace of mind. And if something should happen to me, Eric will have more than enough resources to make sure that the girls are well cared for while he continues to work. If something should happen to our babies...heaven forbid...everything is set in place so that we won't have to worry about money in such a trying time. 

Eric and I are not rich. It's no secret that while we are living quite comfortably, we are very conservative with our finances as we are trying to pay off our debts. We don't drive new cars, we don't own a home, we don't take grand vacations...but we do sacrifice part of our budget for insurance of all kinds. I wish I had all day to stress just how important it really is, but I don't. Just take my word for it. :)

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Celebrating Lasts

I'm a blubbering idiot this morning, so bear with me. :)

A few weeks ago, a fellow mama recommended this book to me:


"Let Me Hold You Longer" by Karen Kingsbury

Ever since I first read the words of this book I've been seeing childhood, and life in general, in a completely different way, and I knew that eventually I would have to share this with all of you...it's just too good not to. :) Aside from the Bible, no other book has ever touched me or left an impact on my life more than this beautifully written children's book. 

Author Karen Kingsbury discovered one day something that many parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles, and friends eventually discover along the journey of raising children...that nothing lasts forever. One day as her young son jumped into her arms and said "I love you!" she felt the weight of his growing body and she realized that soon he would no longer be able to jump into her arms in that way that she loved so much. And then she looked at her older son just entering Middle School and thought, "If I had known when he jumped into my arms for the last time, would I have held on a little longer?"

Of course that thought sent me into a tailspin! We spend so much time in this life celebrating "firsts." They are easy to spot, because we are looking for them...waiting for them...poised and ready to capture them in photos. First smile, first time crawling or walking, the first time they bat a ball or go to school. We clap and cheer for all of life's little firsts. But life is equally full of "lasts." And often we miss them, because they sneak up on us. We don't always know when something is going to happen for the very last time. But if we did - if we became more keenly aware of lasts - would we hold on to the moment just a little longer?

"Evie's Last Stand" Haha. Right before she learned to walk.

I remember becoming a mom for the first time and practically wishing Evelyn's babyhood away. I loved each and every new milestone that she hit, and I couldn't wait for the next one. It was fun and exciting to watch my baby grow. But of course, it all passed so quickly. I missed a lot of "lasts" that first year. 

Evie's very last toothless smile caught in a picture. Her teeth popped through the next day!

Looking back, I think about the struggles we had with our first newborn. Evelyn would get terrible reflux sometimes at night, and all we could do was hold her and rock our crying baby until it passed. Those nights were long and stressful...but eventually they ended. There was a night, and I couldn't have known which one, that my baby would need me to rock her to sleep for the very last time. I know that if I had been aware of this last that I would have given her extra kisses, sung one more song, held on for just a little longer. 

Grace's last moments in the hospital.

When Gracie was born I knew that I wanted to slow down my way of thinking. I tried my best to savor each moment and every stage, instead of waiting anxiously for the next one to come. From the very first time I held her on my chest in the hospital I remember thinking, "Remember this. Hold onto this moment for as long as you can." I was a lot more emotional the second time around, knowing what was in store for me with this beautiful little baby. 

Just before walking!!

I think in the back of my mind I was hoping that if I could slow down my point of view that time would seem to pass a little slower as well. Of course that didn't happen. :) Even at only a year old Gracie has already experienced so many lasts: Her last night sleeping beside me in a baby bassinet....her last gummy smile...her last days of scooting and crawling to get around.

Now that I am pregnant for the third, and possibly LAST time, my hope and wish is that I can really stop and smell the roses with this baby. And yes...with this pregnancy as well. As much as I feel miserable on days that I am sick and tired, I have reminded myself many times over the past few weeks that this could be my very last chance to feel sick with pregnancy. And to tell you the truth - that thinking is sometimes the only thing that gets me through the day. 


The wonderful thing about "Let Me Hold You Longer" is that it chronicles life events all the way from birth to leaving for college, so for a parent with young kids like me, it has made me aware to look for certain lasts that are yet to come - and there are many! From the last day of Kindergarten, to the last kicked soccer goal, to the last school dance. I hope that I will always remember to appreciate not only life's firsts, but all of those lasts as well.

This book has touched me so deeply with its message that I want as many people to enjoy it as possible. I have officially found my new "go-to" baby shower book! I will definitely be donating a copy to our church library, and I would love to send a copy to one of you as well. Just leave a comment below and on Friday I'll draw one random name for a "Let Me Hold You Longer" storybook. 

And of course, it's not just children who experience firsts and lasts. As adults, they are still happening to us all the time. I hope that all of my dear friends will remember to savor those moments in their own lives as well. Have a great day!

Monday, April 16, 2012

My Incredibly Interesting Life.

Hey, dudes. Welcome back to Monday. :) We had a very lazy weekend. Great, but lazy. On Saturday Eric wanted to make sure that I got to do whatever I wanted to do after the very long week I had. We've had a lot to be thankful for in our family lately, and he was ready and willing to take me to any snazzy place I wanted to celebrate. And where did we end up? The Olive Garden. Haha.

I really don't need to go to a place that charges $100 for a steak when all I want to do is spend time with Eric. I am genuinely fine with a trip to a burger joint, to be honest. It's just a treat to get to away for a little while. It doesn't make for a very exciting story afterwards, but oh well. )

I meant to take a belly pic this weekend, because I took one last weekend, and I really want to stay on top of that this pregnancy. I have always been terrible about documenting my pregnancies in any way, and I always regret it afterwards. And this pregnancy is super unique in that I actually have an easy place to keep track of things - right here! But of course, I didn't get a picture. I know most of you have seen this one, but I'm throwing it up here anyway, because I don't think I've put it on the blog anywhere.


Easter 2012

I believe I was seven months pregnant with Grace when I started this blog...maybe eight. So it will be nice to have the beginning of a pregnancy to look back on some day...you know, in case I get a wild hair to try this again. I cannot even tell you how many times I've looked at Eric and said, "Never again" over the past two months. :) I'm not a happy pregnant person. I'm just not.

In other news...this little blog rolled over a momentous milestone over the weekend. Yay for 100,000 page views! (If I counted my own dang page views I'd probably be at a million by now, haha.)


I'd like to do some kind of giveaway for this, but I have to think of exactly what I want to do. Have to get back to ya on that one. ;)

I promise, my life really is this boring right now. I'm not trying to cover up my secret jet-setting ways or anything. But sometimes boring is good, right? Kind of a "no news is good news" type of scenario. We're just trucking along. Oh, I guess I should tell you about the new doctor we have in the family before I go.

Her name is Doc Evie, and she can diagnose whatever ails you. Ever since the new show "Doc McStuffins" debuted on the Disney Channel, Evelyn has been obsessed with playing doctor. If you are sitting still, she will find something wrong with you. And if you are a man that something is probably hair located in a place that she doesn't find acceptable. Eric has been checked out for "too much arm hair" many times now. And when Evie discovered her grandpa had hair in his nose, well...she ran to get the scissors right away. :) 

Tonight Eric is back to his class, so it's another long day today for the Robert girls. I'm just waiting for the day that my energy returns and this nausea goes away for good. On that day there will be much rejoicing throughout the land. I will throw a monster blog party. But that day is not today. So for now, I say peace out. It's time for my nap. Or house cleaning...but trust me, I'd rather be napping!

Friday, April 13, 2012

Confession Friday 4-13!

Evelyn came to me yesterday completely naked wearing a diaper on her head.

"Is this funny, mom?!" 


After assuring her that she is a regular ole comedian, I asked if I could take her picture. And right as I was about to snap the picture, she said...

"This is going to be HA-larious!" 

So...ERIC IS HOME!! Woohoo! He slipped in last night, and the girls were very excited to see him this morning. We are complete once again. Hallelujah. 

I confess that I can't wait to find out what we're having so I know if a GIANT yard sale is in my future or not. :) So ready to get rid of stuff if I can!

I confess that our boy name (which we have had picked for YEARS) is used more as a girl name now. And I don't care. We're still going to use it...if we need to.

I confess that I no longer eat to live. I LIVE to EAT!

I confess that I test drove my dream mom-mobile, and I might be too short for it. :( The side-view mirrors are right in my line of vision...that's a problem. I refuse to sit on a phonebook in my own vehicle. 


Grace was having issues figuring out her new fangled cup on Easter, hehe.

I confess that this post is going to be really late. Eric is in the mood to talk. :)

I confess that Evelyn cannot say the word "grandma." So if you ever hear her say something about, "my grandpa and grandpa" she is not referring to two dudes. No rumors, please.

I confess that I'm going to have a hot dog for lunch. That's right. Pregnant and eating hot dogs. For shame.

I confess that I am so proud of the hubs for working hard and getting recognized for it!! Yay for a recent promotion AND being accepted into the St. Louis Rotary Club. Woot! "Service Above Self." :)

I confess that I laugh at myself every time I look in the mirror. My body is so ridiculous right now.

I confess that I purposely do not discuss political issues on this blog, BUT...I have just learned that since passing the new healthcare, many insurance companies have dropped epidurals from their coverage. They are not "medically necessary." Several of my online friends were not aware of this until AFTER they had their babies and are now paying for it. So make sure you check your insurance, preggo mamas! 

And on that happy note, haha, I hope you all have a wonderful weekend! 
Stay out of trouble.
Don't gossip.
Eat your green vegetables.
It's time for my hot dog.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

March Update - Just a Little Late :)

We were locked out again last night.

I don't want to talk about it.

One more day....

I just realized that it's April 12, and I never did a monthly update on the girls from March. Whoops! According to the all-knowing Dr. Oz there is no such thing as "pregnancy brain." I beg to differ, Mr. Oz. Seeing that you are a man, and I have been pregnant 3 times now, I win. You lose. My brain is all kinds of whacked out this time around. And it's more than just forgetting things and being in a fog every day. There is something going on in my head that is causing me to lose my "filter" if you know what I mean.

I think these darn hormones are turning me into a crazy mama bear. For real. Don't mess with my family, or my friends, or anyone for that matter...because you will incur the wrath of pregnant Adrien. I can't seem to help myself. So just don't test me, please. :) **This has been a public service announcement, brought to you by the Council of Those Who Would Like to Keep Their Heads Intact.**

ANYWAY, back to my kids. :)

Can we start with Gracie?
Oh, Gracie.


Our little Gracie girl has been a tough egg to crack lately. I have to say that this little one tricked me. She was the easiest pregnancy. She was the easiest newborn. I thought I had a dainty, quiet little girl to raise - in sharp contrast with her outgoing and vivacious big sister. But then something inside of her snapped one day, and now she is an anti-cuddling, furniture scaling, heart-attack inducing, little bruiser. 

I can handle the climbing and getting into everything. But what kills me is the fact that Gracie can't stand to be cuddled, and that's pretty much all I ever want to do with her. It's those plump little cheeks, her adorable smile, and the way she says "uh oh...." Slays me. I want to scoop her up and smother her in kisses, but if and when that happens, all she does is push away. She doesn't like to have her little face stroked or her hand held. That just isn't the way she loves. 

She will offer me the occasional smooch still, but it has to be on her terms. And it's usually only right away in the morning before she remembers who she is. I hope this is something she outgrows, but I fear it's just her personality. I know it's a bit premature to be thinking about things like this, but my dreams of embracing my grown daughter, crying with her on her wedding day, sharing mushy emotional moments...they slip a little further away with every push back of her pudgy toddler hands. 


Grace only seems to be truly happy these days if she is outside running wild and free. She doesn't like to be contained, and if she wants something, she wants it NOW. That pretty much comes with the territory of her age, but whew - I honestly don't remember Evelyn being that way. 

If there is one thing we connect with on a deep level - it's music. Gracie LOVES music, and not in the same way that Evelyn loves music. Evie loves a good dance party, and she's our little performer when it comes to belting out her favorite tunes. But Gracie...she feels music. She hears a song and moves with it...swaying and humming. All I have to do is turn on the radio while I'm doing chores in the kitchen and Gracie will come running. She's my little side kick in that way. :) And it's not just the fast, happy songs that get her going. Grace enjoys the beauty of soft and slow ballads. It's really unlike anything I've ever seen from a child so small. I may not get lots of hugs out of her, but I do get the occasional waltz around a pile of laundry, so I'll take that for now. :)


I don't think Evelyn and Grace could be more opposite. I thought for sure that Evie would be my little tom-boy, but she's really not. She loves all things girly, and she is my little love bug. Unlike Grace, Evelyn likes to touch so much it almost drives me nuts some days, haha. She wants to be right on top of me, all of the time. She likes to rub her hands and feet all over me when we're sitting on the couch. And blogging is very difficult some days, because all Evelyn wants to do is hold my hand. 

Evelyn still hasn't reached a shy-streak. She doesn't know a stranger. In fact, Evelyn often approaches people we don't know when we're out saying, "Hi! My name is Evie!" and then she proceeds to introduce the rest of her family. She is more social than I am, to tell you the truth. I hope it's a quality that we can foster and grow in her, because I only wish I was so outgoing. 


Evelyn's current favorite game is to cause mischief and then run and hide behind the living room curtains. Haha, as if I can't see her little feet poking out from underneath. She even tells on herself sometimes. If I walk into a room and have no clue what's going on, I always know if she was up to no good, because she'll dart past me and hide. :) Same thing happens if Gracie starts randomly crying. I know big sister must have done something to her if I see Evie's little shadow crouching behind the curtains. Crazy kid!

And oh, I cannot forget to mention the imagination that is pouring out of our oldest lately. The stories she tells are truly out of this world, and I could sit and listen to them all day long. Evie has an imaginary pet dragon right now who is "little and fluffy and sooo cuuute." The dragon flew to our house one day. Just ask her, she'll tell you all about it. :) Evelyn gets so excited telling her tales sometimes that she'll begin talking super fast and it starts coming out as gibberish. She just can't contain her enthusiasm when she has a new idea - and that's a quality I can definitely relate to. 


And then there's our last child...Baby Robert. I don't know a lot about this little one yet, except that he or she is a great little swimmer. This child makes me sick and tired, but oh do I love this baby! I pray every day that our baby grows healthy and strong with each passing hour. I'm already anxious to hold a teeny tiny little bundle in my arms again. I still don't care if we're having a boy or girl...but right now I'm leaning...boy. I just think this baby is a boy. I don't know why. I hesitate to say it, because I'm always wrong...but that's what I think at the moment. :)

Sometimes I freak out a little thinking about being a mom of three. But then I look at other mamas who have three (or more) children and are doing a fabulous job raising their family, and it makes me breathe a sigh of relief. Yes, certain things are going to be harder, but I've secretly been waiting to be a mom of three for a long time now. I just want to meet my children and have my family all in one place. I don't know if that makes sense, haha. Parenting the children I already have has not been easy. Girls are HIGH maintenance, let me tell ya. (So I could use a low-mainteance baby this time, Lord. Pretty please?) But it has been very rewarding, and I wouldn't trade Evelyn or Gracie or even my little bean for anything in the world!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Locks

Let me tell you about my day yesterday.

Eric, you are never allowed to leave for a week again.

It began with something many of you already know about. My darling oldest daughter decided it would be a good idea to give herself a haircut. Now, this is something I knew was going to happen eventually. It's practically a little girl's childhood right of passage. However...I didn't think it would happen when she was TWO. I mean, come on. I have like, five more years of experimenting with scissors to get through here, and a little sister following right behind her. The odds of this happening again are unfortunately very high.

And yes, she knew beforehand not to do it. I trim Evie's bangs at home, and I always tell her, "Only mommies and daddies can cut hair - not kids!"

Somehow my booger butt climbed up on the kitchen counter, found the hair trimming scissors, and went to town. I was in the living room with Gracie when all of the sudden Evie comes gleefully running into the room exclaiming, "Mommy, I cut my own bangs!" She was very proud of herself.

At first glance it didn't look sooo bad....


Her hair is already a bit scraggly, so what's a few weed-wacked bangs? They don't even look that bad if they are all swept to the side and pinned back. (Which by the way, I JUST bought a bunch of clips so we could start growing her bangs out...ugh.)

But then as Evie was watching cartoons a little later, I started noticing some really long strands of hair hanging from the back of her head. So I started pulling. And big clumps were coming out in my hands. I raked my fingers through her hair, and more clumps came out. My heart sank...Evelyn must have taken the scissors to the back of her head and started snipping. Once again...I lucked out. Even though I pulled out lots of hair, you can't really tell. I did save a few strands to show daddy when he gets home.


Of course this had to happen while he's away. Just like his child who never gets sick getting sick the very day he leaves. Of course. My luck.

Last night was FPU, and though it was going to be a stretch for me, I was going to try to go. So I put Grace down for a nap, hopped in the shower, and when I came out I smelled baby lotion. This is never a good thing. Someone is making a mess somewhere.

That's when I see Evelyn covered head to toe in pink slimy stuff, and she decided to turn our front window into a canvass for lotion art. Ugh. Just another day around here, but still...one more thing to clean up while I'm trying to get ready to go somewhere.

A little time passes...I'm gathering things up for the evening...and then I realize that I can't find my car keys. Crap. No one's going anywhere without my darn keys. I eventually decide to go check out in the car for the keys, since that's Eric's favorite place to leave them. They weren't there. But when I went to go back inside...I was locked out of my house. I freaked out. My children are in the house, and I am not.

I don't have a garage door opener, because it's in Eric's car, and Eric isn't here. My phone is in the house, so I can't call anyone. I run to the back patio door hoping and praying it's open. Nope. I was seriously thinking I was going to have to leave my children home alone and WALK to my parent's house to get a car and fix the problem. Obviously, that was not something I wanted to do. Of course in hindsight I'm thinking, why didn't you just ask a neighbor to use their phone, but when you're in panic mode, you don't exactly think logically.

This was me.

I made one last-ditch effort to try to talk Evelyn through unlocking the front door. I could see Evie and Grace peeking at me through front the front window. They weren't scared at all. In fact, they were smiling in a bit of a mischievous way, leaving me wondering if it was my fault that I was locked out, or if my little angels had something to do with it. :)

Miracle of all miracles, after some wiggling and giggling, Evelyn got the door unlocked! Hallelujah! But by now I was over it. My mom called and asked if we wanted to come have dinner with them, and I said YES! Of course, I still didn't have keys, so she had to come and pick us up. Needless to say, no FPU for me last night.

What else is going to go wrong? I feel like I need to roll us all in bubble wrap and camp out for the next two days. We're only halfway through the week...

I know you're all dying inside that I can't hand out free financial advice today. :) And it was one of the fun lessons, too...Buying Big Bargains. Really didn't want to miss that one! Oh well. I just have one thing to say to Eric, should he be reading this today. I hope you're planning a big huge surprise for me when you get back. I hope I get to go on a really nice date or something. I like the beach...can we go there? :)

Pray for me.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Easter Festivities!

Ah, I love extra long weekends. They make the week go by that much faster, and this week needs to go by FAST. Eric is out of town at a church leader's conference, so it's just me and the girlies. And unfortunately we got off to a bad start yesterday.

Poor Grace spent all of Easter super crabby and not like herself at all. She was throwing tantrums at the drop of a hat, and all Eric and I could do was look at each other in bewilderment, because we honestly didn't know what to do with our problem-child. (The same thing happened to us on Christmas Eve when Gracie was cutting teeth - I'm sure Eric's family thinks Grace is simply a doll, haha.) Well, the next day (yesterday) she woke up with a super high fever and the poor thing was sick all day long. Ah. That explains it. It was so sad watching my normally rambunctious child do nothing but lay on the couch and look miserable all day.

I'm hoping today is a better day. Friday can't get here soon enough!

Even though our little Gracester was off-kilter for most of the afternoon, we still managed to have a fabulous Easter Sunday. It was so fabulous, that by the end of the day I literally couldn't speak, I was so tired. My nausea is waning, but my energy still has yet to return.

***Get ready for a super long post. I'm sorry. I think I took like 800 pictures. I'll try to whittle  it down to 30 or so and just throw the rest on Facebook, haha.***

Our morning began with the traditional run to see what the Easter Bunny brought!





Daddy bunny thought it would be funny to throw in some gag gifts this year. Evelyn was so excited to put on her new sunglasses, only to find, "Hey, they don't fit!" Baha.



Sorry, darling. Had to. :)

And after Eric whipped up some biscuits and gravy while we ladies got ready for the day, we had the first egg hunt of the day in our little front yard. 





Then it was church time! We were very excited to get to use our new church building to hold Easter services. In eight days members of the congregation came together and finished the lighting in the sanctuary, the carpet was installed, and all of the chairs were ordered and put in. It was an awesome service, and we didn't even have all the fancy stage lights and sound hooked up. I'm super excited for things to come!

After church, it was time for Easter with the Robert clan. This year we had our Easter lunch at Eric's sister Amy's house, and she is the cutest little hostess ever. I mean, for real. I only wish I had taken pictures of every single detail, because she had the most adorable ideas.


Bunny napkins. Be still my heart. She didn't even get the idea from pinterest. They came from a book. You know, those things you hold in your hand and turn the page? Watch out, Martha.


Great Grandma Robert had a special gift for the kiddos. Evie and Austin loved them!




And Gracie did her own thing, cause her bad mood was just beginning....


But I sure loved her present, haha.


It was a great day. The kids played and played and played. 

And we had Easter Egg hunt #2....




They played and played some more, and then it was time for dinner! So off to my parent's house we went, where there was a yummy feast waiting.



And the girls discovered some more treats...



By this time the kids were old pros at the whole egg hunting thing. Both Evie and Grace knew just what to do when we let them loose for the third egg hunt of the day.




Gracie only found three eggs, haha, probably because she was too busy doing this:



But, she found the GOLDEN egg, so Grace got a special treat:


A long but great day!

Our little family is super blessed to have so many relatives who live nearby. Our holidays are long, but so much fun, and we are so thankful for everyone who puts so much time and effort into making great memories for our family. We hope that you had a fabulous Easter, too!

Grace is doing better this morning - back to most of her old shenanigans! Eric just called. He's very excited about all of the awesome free books he's already gotten at the conference, haha. I'm jealous for all of the speakers he's going to hear over the next few days - some of our favorite authors are there. Lucky duck! And we're just going to try to keep on surviving this week.


Have a great day!

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