Sunday, December 20, 2009

Finnian is one!

Happy birthday to my sweet boy, who has grown from a sweet, gentle baby....


...to a handsome little toddler-dude! You have a still have that sweet, loving personality and you love to laugh! May you have 1oo more birthdays, my sweet Finny boy!



Saturday, November 21, 2009

my circle

Hello, cold and lonely, neglected blog. I really do think about updating you. I actually have thoughts and form them into sentences in my mind, usually when I am driving to or home from work. The idea is that I'll type them out sometime after I get the kids to sleep for the night. But, when I get home, I get busy with other things and then normally crash into bed.

I feel like my life is nothing but a tightly wound, annoying circle right now. In the evenings I am dashing here and there to get all the things together for another day. Kids fed and bathed, lunches packed, teeth brushed. 4 pairs of socks... and they ALL have to match? I thought I hated picking out clothes for me to wear each night. Now, I have to do it for 3 other people, and one is becoming more vocal and picky about what she wears....I wrestle them into bed. I crash myself. I normally wake up 2 or 3 times a night. Will my kids ever sleep throughout the night? I wake up and rush through the early morning to get on my way to work just to be late. And I am ALWAYS LATE. Always.

These days at work, I spend most of my time "waiting tables." This is what I call it when we paint, because I spend a lot of time serving each table with water, paint, paper towels, wiping up spills, cleaning out paint brushes, washing mixing trays over the sink, etc.... I ask the kids, "Where's my tip?" They laugh. I do enjoy watching them paint with that zen look of wonder on their faces. We listen to music, they ask for Miley Cyrus or Taylor Swift, I oblige. I watch them eat at lunch duty, I tell them to "Sit down, use your inside voice, you should have got ketchup when you went through the line, don't call him that, make a good choice, follow directions, turn around, we don't share food, is that appropriate for school?" Then after teaching what I consider to be an UNGODLY amount of 1st and kindergartners for an UNHOLY amount of time, I go to car rider duty. "You go to 1, You go to 3, You go to 5. You have a good night!"

I come home again in the evening after picking up the kids and I do it all over again. I make the food, I wipe down the table, I pass out the drinks. I get no tip. (Well, I guess I do. I get kisses and hugs.) I say, "Use your inside voice, don't call him that, don't pull her hair, follow directions, are you making a good choice?" I have to change diapers at THIS job, but I get to do it in my pajama pants. (Notice no mention of dishes or laundry. I always have two large mountains of clothes and dishes waiting for me by Saturday morning.)

I am tired, and it takes all the mental energy I have NOT to lose my patience on my kids. It's not their fault I've done it 5 million times in the day with OTHER people's kids. God, Thank you for my family and my job, even though it stresses me out at times. There are millions of Mommy's in the world without babies. There are millions of people in the world without jobs. How blessed am I to have both?

Monday, September 7, 2009

Ella's first day of Pre K

Ella went to her first day of Pre K at First Baptist Academy in Conroe last week! I think it went very well. She didn't cry at all and I cried just a little....

She talked about music class a lot after the first day. In fact, I think music was one of the highlights of her week. She came home excited to sing a "brand new song,"and after going through verses with "you put your right arm in," etc., she said with amazement, "Now, here's the crazy part, you can put your WHOLE HEAD in!" :) She also seemed to really like her dance class on Thursday.

It's kinda funny when you don't have an adult to translate the highlights of your child's day when you are away from them. The major details of Ella's day come straight from her mouth and they can be vague. Wednesday she came home saying she "HATED BIG BLUE." From what I can gather, Big Blue is a time out chair. She said she didn't sit in Big Blue, but she doesn't like him anyway. Thursday after dance, she kept asking me what I wanted on my pizza.... hmmm... But, whatever she is doing, they are certainly keeping her busy! She is wiped out EVERYDAY when she gets home. Friday, she fell asleep at McKenzie's while we were eating dinner. She was out at 6:15 and didn't wake up until 8:30 the next morning!
I can't believe my baby is old in enough for school!


Ella in front of our house before we leave to go to school.
Ella says, "I want to do a smile like my cousin, the Bean." :)
Ella in her chair in Mrs. Petty's room.


Tuesday, August 18, 2009

God Speaks

Ella's new questions about God concern His voice. " Does He talk? Why can't I hear Him? What does His voice sound like? What does He say? Why is He so quiet?" It's really hard to give an adequate answer to a 4 year old that doesn't lead to more questions. And, half the time, I still ponder these myself at 31.

Last Saturday I went to a funeral and God spoke to me in a way I had never expected. Which, I should really expect by now because He does it all the time and then laughs at me when I act surprised, I suspect!

My dear friend Judy lost her father, Mr. Danner to Alzheimer's disease last week. At his memorial service, the minister retold several stories he had heard about Mr. Danner; He even spoke a bit about the illness that finally overcame him.

One of the scriptures read was Isaiah 46:3-5. It says:

3. Listen to me, O house of Jacob,
all you who remain of the house of Israel,
you whom I have upheld since you were conceived, and have carried since your birth.
4 Even to your old age and gray hairs
I am he, I am he who will sustain you.
I have made you and I will carry you;
I will sustain you and I will rescue you.


This promise held true for Judy's dad. Even in old age and illness, he was carried and sustained by his Maker. The promise is for me too but I was also reminded that God's Word holds a promise for someone else, my children.

Since Ella was born, I have become somewhat obsessed about controlling her surrounding environment. I must admit that my obsession was born more out of a fear of accidentally hurting something so new and precious. I worried about scaring her brand new little body.(Almost like being afraid of scratching a new car, as sad as that sounds!)With each child, my fear has multiplied and deepened. It's not just a fear of physical pain or scarring that keeps me awake at night, I fear that something will happen to my child that I won't be able to comfort them through. I have really gotten past the idea of them being hurt, for it is inevitable in life. It's going to happen. The big fear recently is that I won't be the Mother they need me to be to help them survive the experience and be ok.

Isaiah reminds me that it is not solely my job. (Whew! What a relief!)

Yes, I am their mother and I can offer comfort better than most, but God is their True Comforter and Protector and He Carries His Children. He will carry Me and I will try to carry them with my Father's help.

Now my prayer is that God helps me lead them in the right direction, to expose and explain to them who their maker, comforter and protector is. Even if it means I can't explain the sound of God's voice or why He speaks so softly. I do, however, know He speaks. I told Ella so.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Questions about my boy.

Finn is growing. A lot. Not only is he developing physically,(he's a little less than 8 lbs. behind Ainslie and crawling and pulling up on everything!) he's growing emotionally too. I can tell because he is displaying somewhat of a temper about being able to grab and manipulate things as well as a developing sense of humor... For instance, he's grabbing and pounding on my laptop keyboard right now and when I try to stop him, he yells at me. If he's able to get away with it, he laughs. Oh boy!

I have been somewhat weepy about this situation with my son. It may be the fact Finn is getting bigger combined with the fact that my oldest is going to Pre-school this year. I'm not sure. I'm excited for her as she grows and learns,and in my heart I know Ella and Ainslie will always in some way be my babies. But, will Finn?

I was never raised around boys and all I see of mother/son relationships are those with grown adult men and their Mommas. What I notice is: the ones I know DON'T really hug or kiss their Mommas,( or not enough to my liking anyway.) With this thought in the back of my mind, I (almost over indulgently) kiss and love on Finn a million times a day

What if this is all I get? When do boys stop showing affection to their Mommas? When do they start being embarrassed of them? When will I pull away from kissing my son's cheek to find a disgusted eye-roll where a huge grin used to be? Am I one of THOSE mother's who ruin their son's romantic relationships because I feel like I should be the #1 woman in their son's life? MAYBE!

Friday, July 24, 2009

My kids see the ocean for the first time!

Click to play this Smilebox scrapbook: Galveston 2009
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Saturday, July 11, 2009

JAM-Packed Week of FUN!

Our week-long trip to Dallas was completely busy and crazy, but so much fun! Aunt Stephanie had planned a busy, activity-filled week for us and boy did the adults wear down fast. I think the kiddos would still be going like little energizer bunnies if we let them. We had Tinkerbell Dance Camp, Swimming Lessons and a fun family trip to Chickfila for Cow Appreciation Day. Here are some pictures from our adventures!

Surprise visit from the Cummins Clan! All the grand kids together at Aunt Sharon's house (left to right): B, C, Bean, A, Ains, Ella and Finn in the Bumbo.


Finn and Brian


HurricAINSLIE, The Bug & The Bean


Grandma, Brian and the girls before swim lessons.


Ains churnin' up the water.
(If I only had a dollar for every time she stuck her finger
in that hole in the wall, it' would have paid for the swim classes.)

Bean and Bug kickin' in Miss Linda's pool.


Bug and Bean at their Tinkerbell Dance Camp Performance.
Ella says to us right before the show starts, "Watch this, you are going to love it!"

Beautiful ballerinas!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Return of the 'Do Rag!

Some of you may remember a post a little over a year ago with pictures of the girls in this Spongebob 'do rag. Well, in keeping with the tradition, I have taken Finny's picture with the same 'do rag. Notice, I have applied it in a more masculine manner! :)
Finnian Patrick Moran
6 months old
2009
Ainslie Hope Moran
6 months old
2008

Ella Grace Moran
Around 5 months old
2005


For the original post go to:

CRAYON MOMMY: Compare and Contrast!

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Our DISNEY (store) STAYCATION

Hello All! Hope this post finds you happy, enjoying the thrills and excitement that only summer can bring! The Morans have had their share of thrills already this summer. We took a long....8 minute trip down to The Woodlands Mall this week and made an impromptu trip to the Disney Store. Brian and I joked about how this will have to do in place of a REAL Disney Vacation, but the kids aren't quite old enough to know the difference and the girls left with prizes. We left $30 lighter and no child the wiser. I did get some pictures, unfortunately, they are pretty much just Ella, as Ainslie was uncooperative....maybe we'll make another visit before the summer is over. Hopefully we'll be able to go to the REAL DISNEY WORLD in our near future, until then there's nothing wrong with a little frugal STAYCATION!

Ella and Minnie!
Ella in the dressing room!
Daddy and the girls on the carousel!

Girls with their souvenir cups!

Finny boy, happy no matter where!

Monday, June 15, 2009

Ella's Finny voice


video

When Ella talks to Finn, this is the voice she uses...her eyes bug out, her chin juts forward and she lowers her voice. It's so funny, I had to document it.

Friday, June 12, 2009

All by myself...with three kids!

Brian left yesterday morning to go to a conference in Austin. So, I have pretty much been alone with the kiddos except for when Grammie made a visit yesterday afternoon. We spent all day home yesterday and so now I think the kids are a bit stir-crazy. The girls got to sleep with me in Mommy and Daddy's bed last night, which made them VERY happy. Especially Ainslie. She woke up smiling this morning. The first thing said after she woke up was "I love you." Happy Baby!

I think we'll head out to Wally world today for some Father's Day shopping....

Monday, June 8, 2009

The return of the blog....

Yes, I know. It's been forever. I am truly sorry and my only excuse is that I have 3 children and hold down a full-time job...where I care for.... more children. But, I am on hiatus now and hope to bring my blog up to date.

I found my solace tonight. My hiding place, my rock. But it isn't under the wings of Eagles or the house that was built on the rock. No, my refuge is my bathtub.
I don't douse myself in rich perfumes or expensive bath oils. In fact, what I use for bubbles doesn't even say "Bath & Body." Its says "Johnson & Johnson." The bubbles that fill my tub don't claim to sweep you off to an exotic tropical isle with the scent of blossoming plumeria or rich, sensuous musk. In fact, the only thing my bubbles can tout is that they are "tear free."

OK, so I am using baby shampoo for my "spa time," but, I can't be choosy about my small moment of luxury. I am "Mom," and right now, my time is not my own. (At least not before 10 pm.) So, I'll savor this little moment in my fortress of solitude before the next round of feeding, burping, changing, cleaning, playing, tickling, laughing and (most definitely) loving begins.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Days like these

Days like these make me feel stupid about getting worked up about the "small things." Being too tired to play with my Ella. Feeling too sick to spend a little extra time hugging on my Ainslie. Not paying attention to my Finn as I nurse him. Sometimes I get anxious on my way home from work, knowing I'll be hitting the second shift alone, getting the babies fed and cleaned and ready for the next day. But days like these remind me that I am one of the blessed ones who takes their children for granted. Instead of sweating the small stuff, I should be enjoying it. "Swimming in it until my fingers prune," as Meg Ryan's character said on French Kiss.

A year ago my best friend lost her son. I remember rocking my 6 month old to bed that night, stroking her hair, thanking God for her, crying in pain for my friend who was in agony. Just the night before I had cried about being overwhelmed in an "unexpected" pregnancy. I was so stupid!

Tonight I cry again as another friend is losing her toddler to brain cancer. I wish I could do something for Moms in pain like this. It's like, if I can cry for them enough, maybe it'll ease their pain, but I know it won't. I can't even fathom that ache.

I feel guilty for lagging on my way home and avoiding my nightly Mom duties. There are some Moms out there who'd be dying to do that with their baby. Please pray for peace for Henry and Jonathan's families and for comfort for Jonathan as he nears the end of his little life.

Monday, May 4, 2009

My heart is so happy....

video

... when I see my Finny-boy smile.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Ella has been diagnosed with Premature Andrenarche

Ella asked to have her picture taken with the cows in the TCH lobby. She loved the tutus!


Since this past summer Ella has been showing signs of puberty. Body odor, acne, mood swings and hair in places little girls shouldn't have at 3 1/2. At her 4 year check up (March) her Dr. referred her to a pediatric endocrinologist to screen her for Precocious Puberty . She decided Ella is displaying signs of Adrenal-related puberty. (Premature Andrenarche) Sometimes this is triggered by the adrenal glands too early for no reason at all, but sometimes its because of an adrenal gland disease. So she had blood work done and a bone scan to screen for that possibility. Her results will be back in about 2 weeks. If nothing progresses and she is healthy, she'll go back in 6 mo. for another check up. Ella did very well during her short time at Texas Children's. Brian and I decided that our family is very blessed to have relatively healthy children. We saw so many sick little ones, and heard of the 22 mo. old who had passed away there on Mon. from swine flu. Please pray for that family. You hear craziness all over the news and people joke about it, but it personalizes it when you meet nurses who are sad and heart broken about losing a patient.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Little Forever.

I told Brian the other night that I wish sometimes my babies could STAY babies forever. It's the hardest work in the world and I DO want them to grow up to be good adult human beings. But, as they grow each day, they grown more into themselves and more away from being needy of me. It makes me proud, but a little sad too. I just want those baby hands to hold onto mine forever. I want them to always look at me like I am the coolest, most amazing person in the world. And I know they won't because they'll grow up and discover the truth. It's selfish of me, but I can't help it.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

WHY OH, WHY OH, WHY?

Why is that when I feel bad about not recently discussing one of my children in my blog, they give me something to wrte about.

Ains is down bad. First it was pink eye at the end of last week. "You usually don't get pink eye unless you have some other infection in your body," says Miss Carey. It's almost as if she willed the impending infection into action like it was a challenge to the stupid virus. Sunday night came the trots, Monday night came the tossing. It's like this virus, or WHATEVER IT IS wants to take its time. Grrr... So, I am home today with her again and praying she recovers soon. Her poor little body is worn out and she is STILL not over the pink eye. Brian has to pin her down while I pry open her suprisingly strong eye lids to give her the medicine. I don't think she gets much in because by that point she is so angry, she has cried most of the medicine out. So, her eyes are still oozey and crusty and red. I feel so bad for her.

I took her to Walgreens to get some medicine and as we checked out, a guy behind me in line corrected his nearly-adult son for cussing in front of Ains. He was wearing a shiny, bright green Philadelphia Eagles jacket and huge glasses that made him look like he just stepped out of the early 80s, plus a large neck brace. It ooozed comic genious. Yes, he was classy... (I use the term "classy" because he seemed like the type of person that would use that word and he kinda reminded me a character from a mob movie, or Sopranos.) Despite his fashion choice and rough accent, it's nice to know there are decent people in the world.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Momma's Wild Child

What a day, what a day to take to
What a way, what a way to make it through
What a day, what a day to take to a wild child....
(Wild Child, Enya)


Ainslie is my wild child. Wild at heart, wild in spirit. I love that about her. But, she also makes me crazy! I asked Brian tonight,"I wonder how long it will take until her hair grows long enough to NOT hang forward in her face like she's some wild animal?" I think I can wait a while longer. I want to let her be a baby for as long as she can be. Wild child or not.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Visiting the Doc's Office

Ella and Finn went in for their 4 year and 2 month old check up, respectively.

Ella took 5 shots to the legs like a CHAMP with not so much as a grimace. She squinted her eyes during the last one while she discussed the subtle differences between the Disney Princesses with the nurse administering her shots. (I later asked her why she could easily take shots without crying, but couldn't keep from whining while asking to watch her Barbie Thumbelina for the 4th time in a row.) She got the movie for taking the shots so well.

Finn had a shot too. He only cried for like 2 seconds after his. The big shocker in his visit is that he weighs 15 lbs and 13 oz. He doesn't officially turn 3 months until the 20th. :) Apparently there is some kind of fertilizer in my milk.

The only person NOT getting shots cried more than the two who did: Ainslie. Apparently, she doesn't like being pinned up in the little room waiting on her siblings. (Ah.... "What will the terrible two's be like?!" you ask. Me too.)

In other news: we have been tracking some puberty-like symptoms of Ella's for about the past 6 months. After a previous visit with the Dr. and the progression of her symptoms in the past months, Ella is being referred to a Pediatric Endocrinologist for testing. It could possibly be precocious puberty. Please pray for our family as we try to get this all figured out.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Interview with a Four-Year-Old.



Favorite Color: Pink and Red and different colors.
Favorite Food: Chicken and Macaroni
Favorite Movie: Strawberry Shortcake
Best Friend: Audrey and Beverly
Favorite Princess: Cinderella
Tell me a joke: Why did the cow cross the road? Because he was trying to get to the circus, and home.
Favorite Game: Soccer
Favorite Book: Strawberry Shortcake
Favorite presents: A flower and a strawberry doll.
Favorite thing to do with Mommy: Clean up
Favorite thing to do with Daddy: Play
Favorite thing to do with Ainslie: Play cards with her
Favorite Song: The Kittens Song (From the You Tube Video) LA-LA-LA....
Favorite Outfit: Cinderella Costume
What do you want to be when you grow up? A painter.
Where do you want to live when you grow up? In this house.
What kind of car do you want to drive when you grow up? Grammie's Car
Favorite Animal: Elephant and Giraffe

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

I have no time to say...

.... hello, or goodbye or pretty much, anything.
I have been soooo busy doing things that I feel like I have neglected my poor blog.
I have alot things to discuss, a cute baby boy, my rebel toddler and my cute newly turned 4-year-old. But, like I said, there is no time.
However! Spring break is coming up soon, so maybe then!
In the mean time, I am getting psyched for Baby Ilgy! Tomorrow! :)

Monday, February 9, 2009

Ella Says...

Me: "Ella, pick up these toys and take them to the playroom, please."
Ella: "Momma! Princesses DO NOT pick up toys. They dance with Princes."
Alrighty, then.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Pickin' Up Chicks, Man.

Apparently, having two older sisters is really paying off for Finn in the romance department. Ella has already hooked him up with his first girlfriend. Guess we know who'll have a date come Valentine's day.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

MY BIGGER FAMILY!

So, I guess most of you have noticed that I haven't updated my blog in almost a month. Well, I have been spent most of my free time sleeping or nursing Finn. (The boy enjoys his meals!)


A lot of wonderful times have been spent with my growing family. The girls are getting along great with Finn. I am surprised that even Ainslie has shown a lot of interest in him. She wants to pet his head and starts off sweetly rubbing his hair, but we have to watch her as she gets a little excited and starts getting rough. (I hear the "I want to pet him, and love him, and squeeze him and call him George" monologue running through my head when I watch her interact with him.)

Speaking of the "good girl."
Ain's vocabulary is taking off in leaps and bounds. It seems that since her tubes were put in her ears, she has a whole new world of words falling out of her mouth. Some of her favorites: UH-OH, NO! and GOOD GIRL!" I think "good girl" is her favorite as it is a generic response for almost every activity. Eat a banana, GOOD GIRL! Take your medicine, GOOD GIRL! Brush your teeth, GOOD GIRL! Rip off your pee-soaked diaper and run to the play room while ripping at it with your teeth, GOOD GIRL! Fall on your brothers head while dancing to YO GABBA GABBA! GOOD GIRL! OK, enough, you get the picture.

Ainslie also has habit of rubbing her nose when she is tired. Generally, she rubs it with her blankie as she falls asleep. One day, I was doing what I generally do since December 20 -- nursing Finn -- when a cranky and tired GOOD GIRL tried to climb up me, wanting to be rocked to sleep. I happened to be eating a piece of chocolate, so I gave her a little part of it to maybe keep her quiet until I could finish nursing. She took off with it to the play room (much like the Phantom runs back under the opera house after attacks, sans cape and mask and sometimes diaper) when she came back, she had chocolate all over her nose and her binky. Apparently it IS a comfort food.
Ella Grace Moran is an amazing little girl.
She is such a good big sister. She is constantly running me little errands to get "Ainslie" or "Finn" diapers. She calms Ainslie when I am dealing with Finn issues, and she is just really starting to come into her own. Both the girls have been sleeping in their very own beds in their pretty pink room, and have been doing such a good job going to bed at night. A lot of this I credit to Ella, who has done such a good job of helping take care of her sister. I can't believe my "baby" is going to be 4 next month! Below is a picture of a rocket she drew. Enjoy!


More sooner or later!

ME:

My photo
I have 2 lovely daughters and 2 handsome sons, who keep me very busy and a husband who keeps me grounded. I received my BA in Graphic Design Communication in 2003. A year and a half later after working in corporate America as a graphic designer and living through my OWN REAL LIFE "OFFICE SPACE" I got certified as art teacher. I have been teaching since the fall of 2004.