Monday, February 16, 2009

Flower Girl

We took a trip to Iowa over Valentine's Day weekend. Dusty's good friend of twenty-plus years, Ethan, got married on Valentine's Day; Dusty was the best man, and Lily was the flower girl (and Ciera was the bride, but come on, Lily was the star of the show! lol). It was a bummer that Lily wasn't feeling well, but considering the circumstances, she had a great time and made an adorable flower girl.
She did really well during rehearsal, walking straight down the aisle with Tony, the ring bearer. She walked right to Daddy several times and was very comfortable in the auditorium where the wedding was to be held. We all crossed our fingers for luck the next day! On the wedding day, Lily practiced walking down the aisle a couple of times, once again doing a great job - even with the aisle runner and rose petals to distract her. Things were looking good. Fast forward through three hours of hanging out at the wedding location (during her usual naptime), waiting for the big moment... Well, she tried really hard! The entrance to the auditorium was off to the left, so she had to walk in, turn right to make her way to the center aisle, then turn and go down the aisle. She made it all the way to the beginning of the aisle, stopped dead in her tracks, made a big u-turn, and walked right back to Mommy. Twice. Then Mommy carried her down the aisle and handed her off to Daddy. LOL... She had the right idea, but there were just too many people between her and Daddy. Oh well, she got a good laugh from the audience, so it was fun. And she looked soooo pretty!
Dusty and Lily were so sweet together in their fancy outfits. Lily is such a Daddy's girl, all she wanted to do while we were waiting for the wedding to start was follow Daddy around. And then of course during the reception they danced together. We all had a really nice time!

Menu Plan Monday

Monday - Super Easy Tuna Casserole
Tuesday - Skillet Lasagna
Wednesday - Beef Taco Rice Skillet
Thursday - Lemony Fish over Veggies & Rice
Friday - Mexican Steak Stir-Fry
Saturday - Apple Chicken Quesadillas
Sunday - Cheeseburgers & Pasta Side Dish

Sick little girl

I guess it's just that time of year, and toddlers are susceptible to it. Lily is in sore shape right now. One ear infected, the other has fluid, one lung with crackles, a yucky wet cough, and a fever to boot. We got a chest x-ray and we're starting an antibiotic. I think we'll just snuggle on the couch for the rest of the day!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Fence Update

More pictures of the fence project. Cross beams are up, so the fence pickets will be next. Lily helped keep track of the brackets by sending them down the slide.

Movie Watcher

This is how Lily watches her movies (Bambi is the most frequently requested, followed by Tinkerbell). She insists that both of the pillows be on the couch, and she has to have a blanket and a cup of milk. If all of this is in place, she will happily watch her movie for about 20 minutes. And then she's off and running again, but I can really use those 20-minute quiet moments now and then. She doesn't watch movies all the time, but she has really started to enjoy them.

This is during the opening scene of Peter Pan. She was very concerned when the dad tripped over the blocks and fell down. She was saying, oh nooo, uh oh! Hilarious.

Marker mess!

Lily usually does a decent job of keeping her markers on the paper, and she absolutely loves to color with them. I've had a hard time keeping her occupied while I get ready in the mornings, so the other day I thought I'd get her set up at the table with her markers so I could go hop in the shower. Let's just say it was a good thing she was buckled into the chair so she couldn't go around the house and do this....
Somehow the paper and the markers were all gone by the time I returned (not very long afterward!), and all that was left was this terribly cute mess. Thank you, Crayola, for extremely washable markers!

Apple Chicken Quesadillas

I am in love with Apple Chicken Quesadillas. Our Taste Testers group chose the theme, "Kid-Friendly Lunches & Snacks" last month, and this was the recipe I decided to prepare. Little did I know that I myself, not just the kids, would love these things! You have to try them. Yesterday at lunchtime I wanted one of these, but I didn't have any cooked chicken. So I made them without the chicken, and that was good too (not fantastic like the original, but I was satisfied with the result). And, these quesadillas are also good as leftovers. What could be better?

Menu Plan... Wednesday!

We have a lot going on this week, so I just haven't had a chance to post my menu plan until now. Since things are kinda crazy, I didn't plan which days we'll have the meals. Sometime this week, we'll have:

Skillet Goulash

All the other days we're either eating at friends' homes or going out for one reason or another. Light cooking week!

Family Bingo

We attended a fun Family Night Bingo event last Friday. Lily had a great time hanging out with the big kids, warming up to them right away. It was a really nice evening, and we even won a prize!

Friday, February 6, 2009

Valentine Cookies

Lily and I made Valentine's Day cookies yesterday. She helped mix up the dough, and she helped decorate; she took a nap while I cut them out and baked them. Here are a bunch of pictures of Lily's version of cookie decorating... She managed to eat about two and a half cookies during this process (WAY more than she needed), and if you look closely you'll notice that she actually sticks the decorator icing into the cookies. Silly girl.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Thin Milk

The nurse in Pedi Pulmonary called to let me know what the doctors said about Lily's swallow study from last week. They are, of course, pleased with the results of the test. Since Lily has been doing well with thin water for almost a week already, they said we can try thin milk. I just mixed a batch of thickened milk with Carnation this morning, so when that is gone we'll try milk without Simply Thick (still using Carnation Instant Breakfast for calories).

I have such mixed emotions about this! I am so very, very proud of Lily's growth and development, and I'm thrilled that she's ready to give this a try. It's been a long road, and the past year has shown dramatic improvement in her health. This new milestone is something to celebrate. But the risks of drinking thin milk are scary. Aspirating water is manageable. Aspirating milk is really not a good deal - milk damages lung tissue, and Lily obviously doesn't need anymore damage - her lungs are truly still recovering from the NICU. The doctor said to proceed with caution, but to go ahead and try. You can bet that I'll be watching every sip she takes for the first few days!

The problem with Lily's aspiration (aside from the fact that she does it at all) is that she has always done it silently - she doesn't cough, gag, choke, or give you any other indication that it's happening. So our only real indicator of actual aspiration will be fever. What if she aspirates and I don't notice a low-grade fever and her lungs are damaged and she ends up on oxyen for the rest of her life?!? (Something that bad will not happen, I am being dramatic, but that's kinda how I'm feeling right now...)

Lily is ready to try this, and I'm really excited about it, but a little apprehensive too. Please pray that her lungs will be protected.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Children's Bible

We love the Read and Share Bible. Each story has its own two-page spread in the book, and they're short and sweet. The scripture the story comes from is listed for each story, and at the end of each story there's a question to spark discussion. Lily isn't quite old enough to voice responses to the questions, but we do talk about them. The stories take literally less than two minutes to read, so it's convenient and fits into a small child's attention span.
I spent a lot of time looking at children's Bibles before choosing this one. I like this one because the stories are simple enough for Lily right now, but thorough enough to last her a few years. Especially because of the discussion questions, I think this is a Bible a little kid can grow and learn with. So if you're looking for a Bible for your kids, this is a good one to check out!

Monday, February 2, 2009

My Plants

I never would have considered myself to have a green thumb, and really I still don't. But I've gotten a lot better about consistency with my routines in the past year or so, and that has miraculously translated into healthy, pretty plants! They make me think of my Grandpa Jim, so I'm so glad to have these plants.
This was the first one I got... To be honest I was a little nervous taking it home. It had been a long time since I'd had a plant, primarily because the last one didn't do so well. Nine months later, though, I think it's doing great!
I went to our local nursery and asked for something that would do well in my kitchen window. Apparently they chose a good one - it bloomed! I was just tickled pink when we noticed the little flower buds.
My newest plants are these two in front of the house. I'm afraid of gardening in a flower bed because of all the potential weeding, and flowers require more watering than I'm willing to do. But a couple more plants in big containers didn't seem too daunting. I picked out these burgundy planters and once again headed to Enchanted Forest to have them choose plants for me. This time he chose some kind of lily - funny, huh? I can't remember the exact name, but I think they look great. Dusty cut down one bush on each side of the front door to open up the front of the house a little more, and I love how it turned out. The front door is so much more inviting now, instead of guests feeling like the bushes were going to eat them. Hopefully the boxwoods will fill in on the ends; we'll see how it goes this spring.


Last Friday was such a great day... We went to the wildlife park in the morning, Lily took a nice nap, and then we spent some time outside enjoying the beautiful weather. Lily wanted a drink of my water, and I almost told her no. I'm not quite used to her being able to drink thin liquids! But I gave her a drink, and she wanted more. I gave her another drink, and before I knew it she had stolen my water bottle and made herself comfy in a chair. We sat in the backyard soaking up the beautiful sunshine and laughing while Lily drank my water. One time she took a drink, set the bottle down, and said, "Yummy".... I felt so peaceful and content that afternoon - it felt as though all was well in the world. I think moments like that are meant to be savored.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Menu Plan Monday

Monday - Taco Potatoes
Tuesday - Grilled Pork Chops w/ Roasted Potatoes
Wednesday - Fetuccine Alfredo w/ Imitation Crab
Thursday - Frozen Pizza
Friday - family outing, no cooking at home
Saturday - Slow Cooker Chicken Cacciatore
Sunday - out to eat, no cooking at home

Also shopping for fresh fruit, breakfast and lunch foods, and snacks to have on hand (my list has specific items, not general categories like this); and I planned one extra meal that will probably be used for a weekend lunch: Meatballs with Mushroom Gravy. Still trying to use up those potatoes, since we didn't eat all the meals on last week's plan.

You can get lots of great ideas at OrgJunkie's Menu Plan Monday!