I cannot BELIEVE that it is December 13th. Where has 2010 gone? For real!?
I thought Thanksgiving was yesterday, and it feels like last weekend we were celebrating Halloween and trying to potty train Nora!? I can't believe we are less than two weeks from Christmas! This year has flown by, and in particular, this holiday season. I guess that's what two kids under three, starting a new business, and being pregnant will do to you!
On a serious note, I cannot tell you how blessed we are. Even in the midst of a very busy season of life, Jonathan and I are so aware of God at work in our lives, and we are even more thankful that we can see His Sovereign Hand of Blessing on us and this new dental practice that we've started. (I use the term "we" loosely here, folks. My husband works his TAIL off every day of the week, and I just try to keep the rest of us sane, fed, and clothed).
Here are some things we've been doing the past three weeks which may explain why I have no concept of time:
1. Practice Update: Everyone who knows that we've started a practice has been so faithful to ask how things are going and to continue to pray for us. Jonathan is working so hard, and God has been so kind to keep him very busy. Much busier than we expected to be. First of all, this is what Jonathan would say a "slow time of year." The weather is cold, there is SNOW, people are busy with the holiday hustle and bustle, so dentist visits and teeth cleanings are not always high on the priority list of time and finances. However, we have been blessed with consistency for the past four weeks that Heritage Family Dentistry has been opened. Some days are slower than others, but all in all, things are so much better than we thought and than we deserve. We serve a good God!
2. Pregnancy Update: Woot Woot! We are out of the first trimester! Tomorrow I will be 14 weeks pregnant. I am definitely getting a baby bump, and on many days I am sporting the maternity clothes. One funny thing is how much my belly grows as the day goes on. When I first wake up, I look barely pregnant--just a small bump--but as I eat, retain fluid, whatever, I grow! Seriously, I look months bigger by suppertime! After our last appointment, I have started having a gut feeling that this baby is a boy. Before seeing "it" on an ultrasound, I just couldn't even get my head around having either a boy or a girl this time....it was hard to imagine what it would be, but now I am leaning toward boy. We will hopefully find out on January 3rd, so stay tuned for that glorious news.
3. Nora Update: Nora is just a busy, growing little social butterfly. She is maturing and growing right before our very eyes. The funny expressions, her habits, her mannerisms.....she's getting big, folks! Some cute things she says lately include:
a. "Mommy, can you get me a favorite?" -- translated, this means, "Mommy, will you do me a favor?" Favor and favorite. Cute.
b. "We haven't done that in a whiles." --translated, "We haven't done that in a while." Whether it's an activity or putting on a pair of pants she hasn't worn in some time, she loves to point out when we do things that we have not done.in.a.while.
c. "I told you." We are getting into the "Daughter thinks it's okay to correct her mother" stage. Working on this. Trying to explain how in some regards, this can be disrespectful.
Of course, that's all I can think of right now. I'm certain that as soon as I post this, an abundance of cute Nora quotes will come rushing to my pregnant brain. All in all, we are in love with our girl. She can be the sweetest, most affectionate thing at times, and she is so fun to be around. She doesn't want to miss out on a thing, especially if Liam is doing something she's not doing. We battle with complaining and doing this with a joyful heart, but since these are things that I too struggle with, I hope the Lord does a mighty work in both of our hearts and helps me in training her and setting Godly examples.
4. Liam Update: Liam is now 19 months, and he is busy. Nonstop, 100 mph, into EVERYTHING! He loves the phones, the tv, the Wii, the toilet, the garbage. All things kids are supposed to stay away from are Liam's must-haves. He's getting so much better at obeying, and I am seeing much progress in his listening when I tell him to "come." He definitely knows the word "obey" and he knows what "spanking" or "discipline" means and that he DOES NOT want one. He is also learning that when Momma says something that I want him to do, he is to say "Yes, Momma." Naturally, it doesn't quite sound like that, but it is so cute when he repeats it. Sweet boy.
We have been doing room time with Liam for the past month. I started with him at 18 months. What this means is after breakfast, after he's dressed, clean diaper, etc., I set Liam up in his room with his toys, books, etc., and put a gate up. Then I set the kitchen timer for a certain number of minutes, and he is not allowed to get out of "Room Time" until the timer goes off. Before I started this, Liam was terrified of being in a room with the gate up unless I was in there. Even if he was in Nora's room with Nora, the second I put the gate up, he wanted OUT. When I first started training Liam for R.T., I set the timer for two minutes. That's it. For the first two days, he cried the entire two minutes, while standing at the gate. I would tell him it was okay, occasionally walk by him or talk to him, and then tell him when the timer went off he could get out. As soon as the buzzer buzzed, I made a big fuss over how great he did, gave him a hug and high five, then let him out. (Nora has been a great cheerleader, by the way!) Within the first four days or so, Liam got to where he was in R.T. for about 5 minutes, and he wouldn't cry the whole time. Maybe for the first 30 seconds to minute, then he'd wander off for a few minutes to check out something in his room, and then he'd be back by the gate ready for the timer to buzz. I saw that as progress! I have gradually increased his time, and this morning he was in R.T. for 14 minutes. He doesn't cry at all anymore. He will play with toys, "read" books, or even throw things out of the room to see what kind of reaction he'll get. But, I am really proud of him and am so thankful he is making slow, but steady progress. I wasn't sure he would take to it at all. Nora was up to 20 minutes within the first two weeks of R.T. She LOVED having the independent time, and almost every morning STILL she ASKS to go. She'll stay in there for at least an hour, sometimes me making her leave. Even if it's only 14 minutes with Liam, that is 14 minutes that I get to do some morning chores/tasks without him shadowing me. And, I think it benefits him in learning how to play independently, which he'll need to grow in once Baby #3 arrives!
5. Holiday Update/Forecast: Since Christmas is just around the corner, I must tell you about all of our fun, holiday plans coming up. We will be celebrating Christmas with Jonathan's family this coming Saturday night. Jonathan, the kids, and I are heading to New Orleans on December 23rd, so we decided to celebrate Bradshaw Christmas early this year. We plan to stay in NOLA for about a week before heading back home to have a few quiet days together as a family before JB returns to work. I am so excited to spend the holidays with my parents, sisters, and our little family. I'm certain we'll have a great and exhausting time! Now, if I can only get my Christmas shopping done. The Bradshaws are going to keep the kids for me one day this week so I can get that done soon. Time is a ticking!
Well, that's an overdue update of all of us here in the Bradshaw fam. It's been snowing like crazy here since yesterday, and we have several inches of snow on the ground. After lunch, I am hoping to take the kids out in the snow and capture some pictures. Plus, I have yet to take some Christmas decoration pictures of our house. Seriously, I haven't picked up my camera in weeks. Sad, but true.
Anyway, I hope you and yours are enjoying the season and are having an opportunity to think about what the true significance is! I've been reading through a Christmas devotional which has been really great, but I'll post about that later. Gotta run!