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Happy Birthday Blue Eyes!

My first baby (Blue Eyes) turned four a few days ago. It’s crazy to me that time has passed so quickly. It seems like yesterday I was huge, pregnant and terrified at the idea of giving birth to him. Now he’s four. This year has been crazy. We survived daddy being deployed. We dealt with the behavior regressions, and jealousy. We excitedly welcomed a baby brother and discovered that Snow White is our best friend.

We love power rangers, dinosaurs, and spiderman. Much to daddy’s dismay Star Wars is not the coolest anymore. Teddy bear puppy is no longer the favorite. We now have shuebert. The doggy who can hold the iPad. The blanket I panicked over making a replacement has been replaced by a thin red blanket that is his favorite color. Nap time is a struggle. I’ve thought about getting rid of it, but he still can’t make it through the day without one. In fact I’m sitting at the bottom of his bed making him close his eyes.

Time has changed. Snow White is now a busy two year old. She loves to sing, but we struggle with speech. She’s been in speech therapy for about six months. It’s a struggle to teach her things like potty training because of the lack of talking, but we are learning sign language and she’s starting to use some words. 

Baby boy is mobile! Just today I put him in the living room to play. I walked over to help Snow White with lunch, only to find him crawling into the kitchen after me. 

Sadly blackjack passed before the holidays. Domino was so lonely and depressed (as was daddy and blue eyes) that we ended up getting a puppy. We named her Bones. I remember why I didn’t want a puppy, but the joy she brings to the house is undeniable. 

Yep. Time is changing and passing. And since blue eyes finally closed his eyes long enough to fall asleep, I think I shall catch up on dishes and the millions of other housework chores that have been neglected.  

 

Picture Update

Life never goes as planned. I had such good intentions of keeping up my blog while my hubby was deployed, and I was pregnant. It’s been one heck of a ride. I have more time now though, and I can’t wait to share some of our recent experiences. For now, I just wanted to introduce you to the littlest of our bunch. I haven’t thought of a good nickname for him yet, but he’s too adorable not to share. Not to mention, I wanted to share how much Blue Eyes and Snow White have grown. 🙂

My sweet baby boy

My sweet baby boy

Blue Eyes!

Blue Eyes!

Snow White

Snow White

Brothers!

Brothers!

Snow White loves the baby

Snow White loves the baby

We’re having a baby… and daddy’s deployed.

I’m seven month pregnant now. It feels like it’s just flying by. I actually feel better this pregnancy than I did with my first two, and I’m pretty sure I have my first two babies to thank for that. I run after them constantly. The result is a slightly fitter mommy, and I haven’t gained a whole lot of unnecessary weight. I’m tired, but honestly, what pregnant lady isn’t tired? My kids are acting up, but once again, what kid doesn’t act up when they can sense their world is about to change yet again? My dogs are being horrible, for proof, just look at my dog shaming post. 🙂 But overall, I really can’t complain.

Blue Eyes is excited for a baby brother. He keeps telling me we are naming the baby Silver. Not exactly a name I would pick for my kiddo, but at least Blue Eyes is happy at the idea of another baby. I’m not sure he quite understands that the baby will be born as just that, a baby. I’m pretty sure he thinks the baby will be Snow White’s size, and they’ll be able to play right away. I feel a little bad for the surprise he’s about to get.

I’m pretty sure Snow White realizes something is about to happen. All she wants to do lately is snuggle with mommy. We also found out she needs some testing for her hearing, so I’m hoping to have all of that worked out before the baby gets here. They think it’s a really simple fix, like needing tubes in her ears, but as a mommy, I will feel better knowing how we can take the next steps to help my baby girl in growing.

Now that it’s obvious I’m getting close to the end, I get never ending questions. Was this baby planned? Are you going to keep going? You can’t have just three you know. Do you have a name? How are the kids handling it? How’s your hubby doing with it? Oh your husband is deployed? Will he be back in time? He won’t? Oh you poor thing… you should have planned better…

Here’s the deal, don’t tell me we should have planned better. Every baby is a blessing, and even if it’s not the “ideal” time, I’m so excited to have this baby. To hear people act like this baby is an inconvenience is offensive and rude.

And it’s not poor me. I signed up for the military life when I signed papers to enlist. I didn’t expect to marry a military man, but I knew what I was getting into, unlike a lot of wives, I knew what it would look like. I count it lucky that he’s been gone as little as he has. Since having kids, he has rarely been gone. He was gone for two months right after Blue Eyes was born, and since then only little periods here and there. He’s made it to two of our kids births, and every birthday so far. That’s rare for a military family. I count my blessings.

Yes, I’m afraid.

Who wouldn’t be? I don’t want to be alone when I have this baby, and God willing my mom will be here in time. But I’m not so worried about me being here alone as I’m worried about my kids. Thankfully I have made some great friends here, that I know will take care of my babies until a family member or myself can be home.

Yes, I’m sad my husband won’t be here.

But tears won’t help me. What I need is to be as organized as possible. To find out if there is a chance of being able to FaceTime the birth, or if I can have someone available to send him pictures through email as soon as possible. Finding ways to let my husband be here, even if he can’t physically be here. After all, it’s his baby and he’s got more to adjust to when he comes home than people realize. He was gone most of the pregnancy. He didn’t get to see the ultrasounds. He didn’t get to see my belly grow, or feel the kicks. His gender reveal was a picture I set up with the kids so he had something cute to see. He hasn’t gotten to buy the baby clothes, or put sheets on our well loved crib. He hasn’t had the time to prepare that I have. He left with two kids and he’s coming home to three. Talk about scary!

No, I’m not strong.

I do this because I have to. I’m not strong. I break down, and cry. Blue Eyes has become very sensitive to mommy’s crying, and tries to take care of me. But it doesn’t make me weak either. It shows my babies that I’m human, that I miss daddy as much as they do. And that’s okay.

Would I do it again?

Yes! A million times yes. This is my baby and I can’t wait to meet him. This is our last baby as far as we have planned, but that makes this pregnancy all the more important. Hopefully people can understand that. And maybe it will help someone else who is giving birth alone.

Daddy’s not coming home… 5 ways to help kids cope

Ideas to help with deployment

Ideas to help with deployment


There is a lot of change happening right now. If you haven’t read, we have orders and a date to leave. Hubby and I have both been finishing up our two separate degrees. Surprisingly enough, they will be done within a week of each other. That means that we have double the finals, and trying to fit in time for our kiddies in with his work schedule.

To make matters worse, we found out he will be deploying withing months of being at our new Duty Station. We’ve been through deployment and underway before. But we have been extremely blessed. The last time Hubby left for two months was right after Blue Eyes left. It was a hard adjustment, but at least at that point Blue Eyes was solely dependent on mommy. This time, it’s going to be a lot harder. Daddy gets home and both kids run/toddle after him like he’s the greatest thing in the entire world. While I love the looks on their faces when daddy gets home, how will I explain when daddy’s not coming home? They will be three and almost two when daddy has to leave.

I’m so grateful for friends who have already gone through the deployment with kids. They have been amazing at helping me to keep from getting sad. They’ve given me ideas for things we can do to help keep them from missing daddy. After talking to multiple military wives and kids who have gone through deployments, here is a list of 5 things people agree help their kids during the deployment.

5. Bedtime Stories
One of the best things I’ve heard is those books that daddy’s voice can read to them. Hallmark has quite a few of them, and other companies are starting to make them as well. There are other options for bedtimes stories as well. I ran across the website for a pen that will read “Anybook” that daddy’s voice has recorded. That’s amazing if your child’s favorite book is not the normal bedtimes stories. Blue Eyes loves Star Wars ABC’s, Colors, and 123’s.

4. Daddy Dolls
My friends have also pointed me to the amazing world of Daddy Dolls. We’ve been talking about getting each kid a build a bear with daddy’s voice, which isn’t a bad idea, but then we found daddy dolls. There are a ton of websites that make them for military. Different looks and possibilities, it’s really up to you, what look you want.
Daddy Dolls Inc. -This site will do dolls, dog tags, pillows, teddy bears, and homecoming outfits.
Operation Give a Hug -this is where you can chose to donate or request a doll. It’s great if you want to support military kids, or if you can’t afford to give your kid a daddy doll.
Hugs to Go -has cute little people in uniform that you can put daddy’s face on.
US Deployment Dolls -This site has several uniformed dolls and the face it put on the doll instead of a removable picture.

Whether you decide to do a daddy doll or not, it’s up to you.

3. Deployment Wall
I’ve also been talking to several friends who have created a Deployment Wall. The Deployment wall is all things daddy. Two clocks, one with your time, and one with your spouse’s (daddy’s) time. Most have some sort of countdown, or a jar of “Kisses for each day” daddy is gone. Other walls I’ve seen have maps with pins, pictures, letters, and other types of things to help them know daddy is close.

2. Homecoming Outfits
And then there is the all exciting day daddy comes home…. Letting the kids get special outfits for daddy coming home can be a great way to get them excited. Do they get their own “uniforms?” Most of the time, your branch will sell kids versions in their exchange. Do they get a tutu? If you can’t make a tutu, there are many wives on base who can. Find your base spouse page, I’m sure you’ll find someone.

1. Homecoming Decorations
Do they get to decorate? Make sure you do some research, some places like Build a Sign will do free banners for returning military members. By streamers, get ice-cream! It’s a time to celebrate. The wait is over! Daddy’s home!

Since it’s a fact that my husband will be deploying, I have started a Pinterest board called Deployments. I’m not very good at putting the “Pin” button on my page, but you are more than welcome to check out my Pintrest board for ideas. The link for Deployments is here and the link for Military life is here.

The little hat in the photo is my own design. I didn’t like the patterns I came across, so I spent a couple days designing it. Please don’t hesitate to ask if you like the design. Also, if you have any other great ideas for helping kids with Daddy deploying, PLEASE leave a comment. I’m always looking for new ideas.
-MB
This article is solely my own research and thoughts. I am not a paid sponsor. I am simply a military wife with two kids who will soon be facing the realities of deployment.

My Dear Best Friend

Ted Ted sitting beside Blue Eyes to watch a movie

Ted Ted sitting beside Blue Eyes to watch a movie

My Dear Best Friend,

Someday, the night won’t be so scary. I won’t dread the lights being turned off, or of facing it alone. Thank you for seeing me through those first scary nights. Someday, I won’t take you everywhere. If you are forgotten in my world of imagination, just know that you helped me create it. Someday, I’ll stop sharing my food with your sweet stuffed face. But for now, we share every snack and every drink. You taught me how to share.

Someday, I’ll stop dragging you through the mud. But for now, let’s squish some more. Someday, I won’t sneak you into the shower when mommy’s back is turned. You helped me learn that bath time is a lot of fun. Someday, the washing machine won’t be the end of the world. I won’t stand crying as you spin the excess water away. I won’t turn the dryer off a hundred times, trying to get to you sooner. But don’t think I stopped loving you.

Someday, I’ll stop carrying you everywhere I go. But for now, your soft plush gives me the confidence I need in new places. You make mommy and daddy being gone, okay. Someday, I will leave home without you. You gave me the courage to face the world outside my home. Someday, I will explore the world on my own. You were my first adventure partner. I won’t forget the games we played.

Someday, I will be big and strong. But you showed me that it’s okay to be soft on the inside. Someday, I’ll have a family of my own. You were my first practice as I copied mommy and daddy. Someday, my little ones will have a best friend too. I won’t try to stop it. I know how precious your first best friend can be.

I love you, Ted Ted. I always will.
Blue Eyes

(Written by mommy after watching Blue Eyes and Ted Ted play)

I think Snow White ate Dog Food… and Ted Ted gets a bath

You heard my right, I think my little Snow White ate dog food. Blue eyes was “training” the dogs today. He tells them to sit and then gives them pieces of dog food. It’s super cute and the dogs are really patient with him, but it usually leaves a mess. I thought I got all the pieces up, but I just saw Snow White spit a piece out. Don’t all kids at some point? I know we were worried for a while that Blue Eyes thought he was a dog… and they’ve both gotten their hands on dirt. So I shouldn’t be surprised that Snow White had to try the dog food.

It seems like she shouldn’t be getting so big so fast. Take your eyes off of her for a moment and she’s crawled off somewhere, normally my room where there are big double mirrors. Blue Eyes loves to play in the dirt, so I’m just waiting for the day I see both of them covered in head to toe dirt. What’s funny though is that for someone who likes dirt, Blue Eyes freaks if his hand or feet are dirty. And then we end up with yet another bath. This last week I made him put Ted Ted outside of the shower while he went to play. I heard Snow White crying and went to check on her, only to come back and find Ted Ted in the shower with Blue Eyes. Since Ted Ted was already wet, I let him play. I watched Blue Eyes carefully soap up Ted Ted and then rinse him off. He sat Ted Ted on the ground and sat next to him, giving him a rubber ducky to play with. Yes, Ted Ted has become my little boy’s beloved friend. After the shower was over, he even stopped carefully to try to dry Ted Ted off, and was heartbroken when daddy had to put Ted Ted in the dryer.

Taking care of Ted Ted

Taking care of Ted Ted

I often find Blue Eyes copying mommy taking care of “Sissy” with his friend Ted Ted. That little brown teddy bear is helping him understand how to take care of someone and to help someone who needs it. Some day Ted Ted will stop going places with Blue Eyes, but for now, it’s so sweet to watch him take care of his friend.

Exploring

Snow White is fascinated with my camera.

Snow White is fascinated with my camera.


This morning, as I was struggling to wake up, my beautiful Blue Eyes tried shoving my feet into my shoes. “Bye Bye” he kept telling me, as he got made that the shoes wouldn’t fit right. I pulled my shoes on the rest of the way and looked around. Blue Eyes and Snow White have been getting up at six am. It’s to freaking early to be going bye bye. I was able to distract him for about an hour with his favorite cartoon, PAW Patrol. But when that was done, he started dragging his favorite blanket and two teddy bears to the stroller. I’ve given up on putting the stroller away. If it isn’t in the living room, we never go for a walk, so we leave it there. Blue Eyes put his teddy bears in the seat and tucked them in.

Then he starts pulling Snow White’s blanket over to the stroller. He has given up the idea of leaving without her, so he gets her ready. There is a small box of clothes my sister sent on the desk. Blue Eyes spotted a pair of Snow White shoes and starts trying to shove them on her feet. Flip Flops do not go well with little tights. Getting frustrated, he came back over. I’ve given up at this point. I’m going on a walk. So I tucked both kids into my monstrous double stroller, and away we went.

I walked and walked, Blue Eyes babbling happily about the cars we walked past and the “pup-pups” we saw. I could only make out a word here or there, but he was telling a good story. Snow White looked around wide eyed with her thumb in her mouth. Thankfully, I was able to convince her to wear ear warmers. It’s not terribly cold here, but she freezes easily.

The walk woke me up. And even though it is far from a pretty walk, hearing my son babble about the things he is interested in, made me happy to be there. Walks are still magical for my little boy and my little girl. They talk, and giggle as we go. Soon Blue Eyes will be speeding around me on a bicycle, and Snow White will be my only stroller baby; but for a little while longer, I get to enjoy my two babies as we explore the world.

We spent the rest of the day reading stories, coloring, working on the names of colors and counting to three. One, Two, Three, is still not clear but he says them with the same tones I do, so I’ve figured out what he’s doing. Snow White has finally become mobile, and spent her time wiggling into the kitchen and getting mad when I put her back at the starting point. We pulled the cushion off of the couch to hide behind them, while sis sis tried to stand on the abandoned cushion. (She may decide to skip crawling like Blue Eyes did). Then we chased the puppies around. When the sprinklers went off, we watched in amazement from the little slide yelling “Water, water”. And when it was night-time, my little girl finally fell asleep from exhaustion and Blue Eyes cuddled with me for one more episode of Paw Patrol. From my babies stand point, today was an amazing day. From mommy’s view, I didn’t get a thing done. But sometimes we don’t need to get things done. We just need to watch our babies grow and explore.

Dear Mr. Blue Eyes

Mr. Blue Eyes and his "colors"

Mr. Blue Eyes and his “colors”


My dear baby boy,
You have no idea how relieved I am that you love your little sister so much. Right now, it’s a little frustrating when she gets a bottle in the eye, or when all 24 lbs of you tries to pick up all 10 lbs of her, but I’m so grateful that you have such a loving heart. I love that you want to help mommy take care of her. I hope that you will remember how much you love her when she is big enough to follow you around and get in the way. Right now sis sis is learning to crawl, and I know you don’t like sharing your cars, but I’m so happy you do. Some day she will discover princesses and tutus and then you’ll be left in peace with your cars and planes.
I hope you remember how much you love her when you two are fighting or teasing each other. I hope you will protect her when mommy isn’t around and that you will look out for her when you two are old enough to go to parties. I hope you will protect your sis sis when you both start school. It’s scary for mommy to know you are going to grow up, but you have mommy and daddy to teach you how to be a good boy and man.
Your mommy and your sister are your first examples of how to take care of your future wife. So when mommy is punishing you because you, “don’t hit girls” or making you open the door, it’s not to be mean. It’s because mommy and daddy want you to love and respect your future wife. We want you to grow into a man who deserves the best and knows how to pick someone based on quality not looks. Mommy and daddy want you to have a better life than we could ever hope for you. We want to teach you to be kind and strong. To protect those weaker than you, and care enough to rescue all of your little pup pups. We hope to teach you how to handle money better than we used to, and to value hard work.
Mommy is excited to explore the world with you and your sissy. I can’t wait to take you on adventures, and to dress up to find buried treasure. I can’t wait to take you to see plays and teach you how to have tea parties with your sister. Believe me, even if you don’t like dressing up, mommy will make sure there are plenty of cookies.
Today we color, and play airplanes. Today we pound on the piano, and splash the bathwater all over the floor. We dig in dirt and run around to the “Bananas” song. Today the dirtier the better. We steal sis sis’s hair bows and climb on the counters for cookies….
Someday, you will grow up, but for today, I’m going to enjoy you being my little wild child.
-Mommy

Screw the New Years Resolution

Grandpa and Snow White enjoying christmas

Grandpa and Snow White enjoying christmas

Christmas with Blue Eyes favorite things...

Christmas with Blue Eyes favorite things…

We all start the New Years with great intentions. We have so many things we’d like to do better, traits we’d like to be better at. The reason most of us fail in our resolutions, is that it isn’t something that hits home. You can’t automatically become great at running, eating right, etc. It requires one small decision every day.So I’m saying screw the New Year Resolution this year. I’ve been taking an inventory of my life, and I don’t have just one thing I’d like to do better. I’d like to re-straighten out my priorities, and live this coming year to the fullest.

My dad gave my husband and I a series on finances. NOT because we are irresponsible, but because we want to change the way we think. Leave a legacy for our children, instead of barely scrapping buy. We were happy to see that we are already doing some of the things they recommend, like an emergency fund or setting a budget every month. Other things we were doing, but somehow lapsed in the last six months. Giving ourselves an allowance was a huge one. We found when we actually give ourselves money we are less likely to go on “spending” sprees.

I’ve been off the computer for a couple weeks. Why? Quite honestly, I am a computer addict. I spend hours looking at the screen and then I can’t tell you what I just spent my day doing. So after a talk with my husband, I left my computer at home. I took a vacation with my family and left the computer, finished up my few projects and turned everything off. Even my phone stayed mostly off. It was a nice little break. It was hard though. I had to decide to live in the moment and not try to capture pictures on my phone. Not text six million people or respond to things that shouldn’t have my time anyways. It was hard. But honestly, I think I need to do it a little more often.

My babies will only be little once. Heck My Snow White already has two teeth and wants to eat people food. Blue eyes? Well he’s still my wild child, but now he wants his “colors” and “Cars” and “Water”. He’ll even lead me over to the shower and try to turn it on or ask for a “towel” when he’s all done. Time flies to fast for me to keep living the way I do. School shouldn’t come first. Neither should days so full that when I go to bed I’m beyond exhausted and I can’t wake myself up when the kids cry.

So to all of you wonderful readers out there. Keep this year about the things that are important. Take one step a day in that direction and soon resolutions won’t even be needed! You’ll be headed in the direction you want to go.

The next generation of love

Mr. Browns aka Honey Jo bears with my babies

Mr. Browns aka Honey Jo bears with my babies

Most of us grow up with a favorite toy. I had two, Mr. Brown and Baby Henry. A while back to went through one of my bags of old stuffed animals, looking for ones I didn’t mind sharing with my two little ones. No need for great toys to sit in a bin when I have two little ones. Mr. Blue eyes of course went right for mommy’s favorite, Mr. Brown. If you remember, I shared a photo of him. I’ve been looking for a great huggable size stuffed animal for the kids. They just don’t seem to make them anymore. The stuffed animals are either mini sized or huge! They fill them with beans instead of stuffing. With how much blue eyes loves Mr. Brown, I decided to see if the company was still around. Apparently Mr. Brown was originally named Honey Jo, and he’s a bit of a collectors piece now. That’s okay though, I found not one, but two Mr. Brown’s available. With some help from Grandma, we got them ordered and they arrived today!

I opened up the packages and felt like I was looking at the past. The sweet faces of my old friend were staring at me. Definitely a lot fluffier and brand new plush, but still the loveable face that kept me company through 27 years of life. My baby boy’s face got huge with smiles as his little fingers grabbed the bear. Even our little princess was giggling when I put one in her lap. I can’t wait to see these two little bears go through life with my babies the way Mr. Brown did for me.

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