One of my favorite pictures, ever

86 year old Archbishop Dmitri loves children. If a child walks by while he’s talking to someone else, he will stop mid-sentence with the adult and bend over to be with the kid.

Jenny and I have been leading a children’s choir for the past couple of months. The first time they all sang was during the pre-communion prayers a few months ago. The Archbishop was on his way into the altar to perform his tasks when he heard the children start to sing. He turned around, came back to the altar door, and just watched. People said he stood there mesmerized, tears filling his eyes. All of our work was worth that one moment for him.

He really is a wonderful man. If you don’t get the opportunity to meet him, it’s really too bad.

with little Anna

Giftcard Shoes

This is not a post about good deals, because I used a gift card:) Last Saturday, after the recital, Jenny (who’s been at every single one of my recitals in TX!) and Jason, along with my mom, Julie, Jesse and I, went to Cheesecake Factory. Once we were finished, Jason and Jesse bought some beer at Central Market and brought it home. All 4 of us girls walked around Southlake Town Square, SHOPPING!

So, I thought I’d share two of the items I got with the gift card from my piano students. I still have around $30 left that I’ll figure out what to do with later.

I've always wanted these shoes, but the $70 price tag kept me away before this. Jenny got a matching pair!

I also wanted leather everyday sandals with a nice arch (this is hard to come by in sandals!), especially during pregnancy. Luckily, I found a pair of Clarks that did just the trick!

Fun Friday

Lately, I’ve been a bit lonely because Jesse’s been working the 1-11pm shift at his job. While this makes for long evenings by myself, it also means that he only has to work 4 hrs. on a Friday!

So yesterday we took advantage of this perk and slept in until 11am. Then, we stayed in our pjs eating cereal and watching a movie. At 2pm, he headed off to get ready for work while I went to spend some time with my UD friends Tiffany and Geralyn. What did we do? After grabbing iced coffee, we went to Robbins Brothers to scope out rings for Geralyn. She and her boyfriend are very serious, and he’s told her that the proposal is coming soon, seeing as he just got his first teaching job. She’s been pretty impatient about it ever since their 2 year anniversary, something which I can COMPLETELY relate to 🙂 I had this one red dress I was determined to be wearing when I got proposed to. I wore that red dress for 2 MONTHS STRAIGHT, no proposal. What was I wearing on the actual day? Beach jeans and an old sweater. Oh the irony.

Anyways, even married girls such as Tiffany and I love looking at diamonds. I wonder if there is anything girls wouldn’t do for diamonds.

Seeing as I just upgraded the center stone in my ring a few months ago, I just recently researched everything diamonds related and had a wealth of information to share with Geralyn, who’s never even worn a ring before! It’s funny how she started off saying, “I don’t know, it doesn’t even have to be a diamond ring” and ended by knowing exactly what cut and carat center diamond she wanted. Like I said, girls just cannot resist diamonds. But I remembered a lot more about them than I realized, because halfway through our appointment the Robbins Brothers guy said, “Seriously, I should offer you a job here!”

After I got home, Jesse was done with his short stint at work and we decided to drive around until we found an appealing “hole in the wall” restaurant. Occasionally, he and I like to break out of our “usual” food places and find something completely new. We found this wonderful New York style Italian place where we got yummy pasta and calzones. I love just sitting and talking with Jesse– he’s the best friend in the whole world, and I don’t mean that in a cheesy way. We can just talk and have fun doing just about anything! Even grocery store trips with him are fun, usually because we spend the time singing silly songs or remembering dumb movie quotes.

Once dinner was over, we headed back home to watch a fun 80’s movie with Goldie Hawn and Chevy Chase 🙂 All in all, a wonderful evening, wonderful day. I just wish I had more like them!

Good Deals

Following the advice of friends, I’ve been surfing Craigslist for baby things. Okay, it’s true, I’d be on Craigslist regardless.

Nevertheless, I found some great deals for our nursery! My good friend, Karen, drove with me after church so we could pick up the items in her SUV.

$50 for the Ikea crib I was already going to buy! And it came with the mattress!

Got this from the same house as the crib-- $50 for a brand new glider/rocker!

Piano Recital 2010

On a non-baby related note, this past weekend was my students’ Spring Piano Recital. Unlike my informal fall get-together, the Spring Recital is a serious deal, complete with programs (which were designed for free by Alpha Graphics since one of my piano moms owns the Dallas location) and mostly memorized pieces.

And the best part? My students pooled together to buy me a dozen orange roses, plus a $150 gift card!!

I got the venue, beautiful White’s Chapel in Southlake, for free since most of my students attend there.

The outside

The inside. Avg. attendance each week is 4,000. Yay for the Bible Belt!

The grounds

This is the smaller historical chapel that we used instead of the main auditorium

The location was perfect. “Founder’s Chapel” seats about 100 and is situated on the edge of a pond. Usually 2-3 weddings a weekend take place here. We just happened to get it on an open day!

All but 7 of my students 🙂


Okay, I promised….and I’m not sure you can see a whole lot, because I can’t get my scanner to work right now, so I had to take a picture. With the high gloss finish on the photos, it was hard to get one to turn out. The “penis” shot was a little obscure to begin with, so this is the “full body” version.

If you’re having trouble seeing, the baby’s face is top left, with the eye sockets and the teeth. He is sitting in a left facing C position. You can see his spine, pelvis, and his arms and legs curled up.

You can see why it would be hard to get a frontal nudity shot... 🙂

It’s a Boy!

Yup! At first glance, the ultrasound technician said that the baby was curled up into such a tight ball that she wasn’t going to be able to see anything gender related (but she did get awesome pics of the spine, face and heart!! So “relieved” to know that he doesn’t have a cleft pallet or spinal deformation).

Jesse and I had gone in first so we could have a private moment together looking at the baby. When our baby was suddenly acting modest, we called my mom and cousin Julie, who were here visiting primarily for this purpose, in from the waiting room.

And then, all of a sudden, the technician said calmly, “And…we have a penis. That is a penis, folks”.

And Jesse said, “Well done, son. Well done.”

Stay tuned for pictures later!

Body Pillow

I know pregnant women everywhere will chant Amen when I say this: Body Pillows are the next greatest thing to ice-cream.

Why? Because if you’re not already a side sleeper, it’s IMPOSSIBLE to sleep without one! You’re not supposed to sleep on your back since the added weight of your uterus can cut off the blood supply to the baby. And sleeping on your stomach hurts. Duh. There’s a human being in there!

After two weeks of rolling around like a rotisserie chicken, waking up every two hours, and getting into fights with Jesse because I was so sleep deprived, I finally spent the $20 at Target last week and bought a body pillow.

Heaven on earth.

I told Jesse I felt like worshipping it. He told me to say it quieter so God couldn’t hear me.

It’s soft, cuddly, and something to hug while I’m sleep so I don’t accidentally kill the baby with the wrong position. That’s how dire all of the Parenting magazines make it sound. No wonder I don’t get any sleep!

This body pillow has, however, forced a decision upon us. Someday, when we finally move into a big house, we are getting a King Bed.

I’ve mentioned before how Jesse is constantly flailing all over in his sleep? This happens on a normal basis, even when it’s just his 200 pound self and my 130 pound self.

But now, I think this Body Pillow has caused him to subconciously feel encroached upon. He feels his personal space is being invaded, and he MUST. RETALIATE.

One night last week, I woke up to a giant karate chop to the nose. I had to run to the bathroom to make sure it wasn’t broken.

The next night, I got a sharp elbow jab in the chest. Yes, I woke him up to yell about it.

The other night, he took the pillow away from me.

Yup, I think we need a bigger bed. Or a mattress on the floor with his name on it. 3 people and 1 Body Pillow are too much for one bed.


Claire and Jesse. She's totally chillin. And, yes, she has a diaper.

Ashford University Employee!

My mom called me to say that my post about Claire’s health issues was “waaaay TMI”. Oh well, everyone, you’d better get used to it, because I apparently don’t find it as gross when I’m talking about one of my “kids”. And since I’m about to have a baby…and babies poop and vomit…well, you’d better not read this blog at lunchtime. Just saying.

Here’s something not gross, but actually kind of a relief. I did get the Ashford University TA job, although technically all new hires are on probation for the first couple months (meaning, they are closely monitored). But it’s FINALLY the next step towards working from home and getting to use my degree in some respectable fashion. When employed for a 5 week course, I will be monitoring online question forums concerning writing assignments for all 5 weeks. 2-3 of the weeks I will be grading papers as well. That’s it!

The pay, as I mentioned, isn’t fabulous, anywhere from $800-1000/ 5 week course, depending on how many written assignments are involved. But on the weeks I’m not grading papers, it’s only about a 4 hour/week job.

And the main plus is that it’s online and from home. I know I’ve mentioned it a lot on this blog, but I’m determined to heavily supplement Jesse’s income (at this point, surpass!) so that we can eventually move on with our future someday. This is a way I can add to our savings while never needing a babysitter!

Thank God for me, if you can, because it’s been a hard couple weeks financially, what with Jesse’s car needing repairs to the tune of $1100!! We also have hardly any baby things– just a few receiving blankets and a pack of onesies! No crib, no dresser, no rocker, nothing. It’s hard not to freak out when you realize just how many things babies need!

My first “new-hire” teleconference is this Friday afternoon, so, like I said, keep me in your prayers!