Wednesday, January 27, 2010

The new addition to our family...

I would like to welcome a new member to our family!

This is Velina Kyakimwa! She is 5.5 years old and her birthday is August 24th. She is our sponsor child through Compassion International.

Here's what we know about where she lives...

Your sponsored child lives in the hillside community of Kabatunda, home to approximately 83,000 residents. Typical houses are constructed of dirt floors, mud walls and thatch roofs. The primary ethnic group is Bakonzo and the most commonly spoken language is Lhukonzo. The regional diet consists of beans, bananas and cassava. Common health problems in this area include cholera, malaria and diarrhea. Most adults in Kabatunda are unemployed but some work as farmers and earn the equivalent of $3 per month. This community needs employment opportunities and affordable education. Your sponsorship allows the staff of Kabatunda Child Development Center to provide your sponsored child with Bible teaching, medical care, health and hygiene campaigns, recreational activities, nutritious food, social events, opportunities for community service, cultural programs, counseling, skills training, tuition, educational classes and domestic supplies. The center staff will also provide meetings for the parents or guardians of your sponsored child.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Time is going so fast...

As I sat on the couch last night holding Little Brother in my arms and flying him up in the air while his drool dripped down on my shirt, watching him smile and coo at me... I realized, "He is four months old!"

I then looked at Bug who sat happily playing with her Little People airplane and realized, "She is sixteen months old!"

I then looked over at Doodle who was doing a silly dance to "Move it, Move it" that she is almost FOUR years old.

Then I looked at my husband and realized we have only been married five and a half years and where on earth has the time gone?

This time is so precious.

I only pray that I have the wisdom to realize this when they want one more song, one more book, one more nursing at the breast, one more tuck into bed, one more diaper change, and one peanut butter and jelly swammich.

I love you my Doodle.
I love you my Bug.
and I love you little brother.
... and I love you my husband.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010


I've always loved Sade.  Her music is beautiful and her voice is haunting.  I turned on my Pandora station this morning as I started working and this song was the first to come on.  I hear a few key parts that made me want to look up the lyrics.  After reading the lyrics, it made me ache for the people of Haiti.

God be with them.

There is a woman in Somalia
Scraping for pearls on the roadside
There's a force stronger than nature
Keeps her will alive
That's how she's dying
She's dying to survive
Don't know what she's made of
I would like to be that brave
She cries to the heaven above
There is a stone in my heart
She lives a life she didn't choose
And it hurts like brand-new shoes

Hurts like brand-new shoes

There is a woman in Somalia
The sun gives her no mercy
The same sky we lay under
Burns her to the bone
Long as afternoon shadows
It's gonna take her to get home
Each grain carefully wrapped up
Pearls for her little girl


She cries to the heaven above
There is a stone in my heart
She lives a life she didn't choose
And it hurts like brand-new shoes

Monday, January 18, 2010

Milk Banks donating to Haiti

The Human Milk Bank Assoc. of North America has confirmed that mothers can donate their milk to the Human Milk Bank Association of North America to send to Haiti. You can call 1-866-998-4550 or visit

This fills my heart with joy!!! 

I've already called and left a message.

My Birthday Surprise!

My 30th birthday came and went last weekend.

This weekend was promising to be busy.  My mother in law and father in law came into town Friday and my parents came into town Saturday to be at Bug and Little Brother's baptism (more on that later).  So we had lots of grandparent love and help which was awesome.

Our plan was to do a belated birthday dinner on Saturday night since we'd have automatic babysitters!  We talked about going to a movie or to a bar to listen to live music.  We got home from church, got dressed and went to TacoLu's for dinner.  It's kind-of a bistro Mexican restaurant.  I mean, you don't go there for chicken fajitas.  You go there for seared tuna tacos or avocado tacos.  It was good!

Rob was a weird nervous wreck all day.  He was super hyper and just very anxious (in a good way) all day.  He was driving me up the wall.  Usually I'm the one that's super anxious but for some reason, I was the calm one and he was the stress-case.  We left for dinner and his phone was blowing up.  He mentioned something about going back home to check on the kids and tuck them in and then us going back out to finish the night.  That was all fine and dandy.  I was just goin' with the flow.  We pulled in the neighbor's driveway to get the information to feed their dog (ha!) and I walked in a dark house to all my neighbors and a few friends yelling "Surprise! Happy Birthday!"  I was blown away.... seriously?  Then I looked around and saw my parents and his parents and said, "Um... who has my children?"  They all started laughing and I heard a few "I told you she'd say that!" comments.  Turns out, we had two babysitters at our house next door that I knew (and trusted) and everyone was here to celebrate my birthday.

The night was great.  Lots of friends and lots of small chit chat between groups of people.  It was simple and wonderful.

Thank you honey... the surprise was wonderful and you're an even more wonderful husband.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Padded Crib Sheets

So when Doodle moved from the infant room to the toddler room, I didn't like the thought of her napping on an uncomfy cot vs. a crib.  Her great aunt C came up with a great idea for a padded crib sheet.  I gave her a sheet and she took it home and quilted it for us.  She also embroidered her name on it so it wouldn't get misplaced.  We've used this sheet for years now and although I wouldn't recommend using it in the crib, it makes a great must have item for our little ones when they're napping on cots at daycare!

I contacted her today and asked her if she'd be willing to sell these to people and customize them for each child.  To my delight (and hopefully yours!), she said yes!  She's going to do a sheet for Little Brother and going to figure out how much it costs.  Until then, I wanted to see if anyone is interested in buying them from her.

You can mail her the sheet of your choice and she will quilt it for you and embroider their name.  She has other embroidery options but I will let her decide to share that herself when you contact her!

So please, if you're interested in getting a padded sheet for your little darling, respond to me or e-mail me directly at issakeeper at yahoo dot com and I'll pass on her information.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

The Last Ten Years

I've seen a few blogs and posts with people reviewing the past decade. 
Let's see what I've done and what I can remember!

I was dating a country boy and we'd been together for a while. 
I still lived with my parents & worked for a non profit.

2001: Twenty-one.
I moved out on my own with a fun roomie and started working for Budweiser.
I worked directly for the daughter of the Busch family. 
That was an experience!

I broke up with the boy and started on a trend of not making good decisions
I joined a site called (good decision, stupid site)

I met a lot of people online and started some friendships with folks I still am friends with today.

2002: Twenty-two.
Still on the "bad" trend, still frequenting the online forums of FTJ and still meeting people online.  Someone put something in my drink in a bar and avoided being who knows what by a group of guys because a random cop decided to walk me to my car. 
I decided to make some changes personally and decided to stop my behavior and put my trust in God
I stopped looking for that someone. I encountered a man by the name of Rob in a forum I visited daily.

He lived in CT and we started talking in the fall. 
I took out some money and bought a plane ticket to NY where he picked me up and we had a whirlwind weekend of fun and love. 
We fell in love immediately and knew we had to be together for life. 
We knew this was IT and we knew that God had a bigger plan for us.
Broke the news to my parents that I was in love with someone I met online (*gasp!*) ...

Flew to Dallas, TX for a meet-up with a group of close friends from FTJ.
(This was one of the most fun weekends in my life!)

One of my best friend from high school, Holly, died in a car accident on her way home for Christmas.

2003: Twenty-three.
Moved to Connecticut with Rob and his dog Noodles. 

Got to go to the New York Athletic Club and experience downtown NY in a neat way...
...and also got to attend my first Yankees game!

I worked for a local pharmacy as a Pharmacy Technician.
I got to go to the Adirondack Mountains and try to snowboard.

Rob asked me if I wanted to go "home" and we packed our stuff and moved to Florida.
We moved into an apartment and got Cassie to give Noodles a buddy.

2004: Twenty-four.
Rob and I got married on the beach in March. 
This is the smile, that I've never shown before....

Bought our first house and broke our backs renovating it.

Experienced a pregnancy loss & realized we wanted to start trying to have a child.

2005: Twenty-five.
Experienced another pregnancy loss.
Conceived our first child due in March 2006!
Sold and bought another home literally two houses down and across the street.
(Picture is from previous owners)

2006: Twenty six.
Doodle dunk was born March, 2006!

2007: Twenty seven.
We moved into a bigger home and rented our old home.
October, we lost Noodles to cancer.

Suffered another pregnancy loss.
Immediatly concieved again, due August 2008.
Welcomed Marlie into our home.

2008: Twenty eight.
We found out we were expecting another girl!  "Bug" was born late August.  Gosh, if I hadn't been the one pregnant with her, I wouldn't have even known she was mine :) This little munchkin looks just like her daddy.

2009: Twenty nine.
Much to our surprise, we found out we were expecting again when "Bug" was only 4.5 months old. 
Baby boy due September 2009! 
Spent the entire year reciving wonderful donor milk for Bug (milk dried up with the pregnancy.) 
Rob's sister got married to the best Bro-in-law ever. 
We welcomed "Little Brother" born late September 2009.

Whew... life has been quick, fast and furious. 
We have been blessed beyond our wildest dreams.
We end the decade as a family of five completely content and learning how to put God first in our lives.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Your potential

There is no limit to your potential. For there is no limit to what you can imagine, and whatever you can imagine, you can bring into your life.

Yes, there are very real hurdles to whatever you attempt. And in some way or another, you can get yourself over every one of them.
When you imagine limitations, they become real. Instead, focus your imagination on the positive possibilities, and focus your efforts on making them real.

Think of all the things, once considered to be impossible, that are now commonplace. Always remember that when there is a good enough reason, there is a way.

In every moment, you are making progress in one direction or another. Choose to use those moments, as they come, and focus your efforts to fulfill the great potential that is yours.

Feel the unique potential that is your life. Give your own special beauty to the world.
-- Ralph Marston