Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Do you know what you're having?

Do you know what you're having??? When do you find out?

I get these questions numerous times a day. And I completely get it. I'm beyond excited to know for sure what we're having and know what our family is going to look like. I understand that people are only asking because they're excited for us. But it's also starting to make me a little nervous. I vividly remember various reactions when telling people Walker was a boy. I heard several sighs and remarks of disappointment and two and half years later, they still hurt my heart. This is our CHILD. Walker was not a disappointment, mistake, dud, or failure. He is our baby. He is created by God, in His image, and was sent as a blessing to our family. I would not change one hair on his head.
Not one wild, strong-willed, hair.

And the same holds for baby #3. Especially with this child, we prayed. Because the whole story isn't just mine to tell, I won't go into detail. But I will say that for several months Tom and I were at a stalemate on a third pregnancy. We had completely opposing ideas of the next step for our family and our only hope of resolution was prayer.  Neither one of us was budging and it understandably caused strain. Through prayer and petition, the Lord changed a heart and united our desires and we began to pray for a baby, even going so far as to ask for a girl. And we were answered with a child, though we're not sure yet on gender.

But we are sure is that this is our baby, fearfully and wonderfully made. (Psalm 139:14)
We sure that the Lord's plans are infinitely greater than our own. (Isaiah 55:9)
We are sure that we serve a God who is for us. (Romans 8:31)
We are sure all good gifts are from Him. (James 1:17)
We know He placed the desire for this child in our hearts. (Psalm 68:6)

I want this baby to be rejoiced over for the blessing that he/she is. I want for this baby to be received with excitement. I want people to understand that while we would  be excited to have a girl that does not make a boy any less thrilling.  So please share our joy when we find out, whether it means you give us something pink or blue. Actually, please don't give us anything blue, if that's the case. We're all set in that department.
So, just for fun, here are my favorite pics from our two little ones when they were newborns. I really can't believe we're going to have another one of these before long.


Harris (Photo by Sista)

At least this one is dodging wearing the Santa suit. The suit is a 0-3 months so a February baby will be safe from this. Walker wasn't so lucky.

What you can't see in this picture is that it was really too small and the bottom part wouldn't snap closed, nor would the back. But he looks fantastic from that angle.

Let us examine our ways and test them,
   and let us return to the LORD.
Lamentations 3:40

Thursday, August 25, 2011


How in the world is it time for school already???

My sweet little boy looked way too young to leave in a room with random people I do not know. I really didn't expect to have any problems at all with dropping him off today because he already went to camp this summer and I happily dropped him off and went on with the day. However, I was barely making it from moment to moment, right in the middle of morning sickness. Without that distraction, today was harder. And, it seems much more permanent. I knew camp was only a week where this is the beginning of his school days. He's only going two days a week so this is probably a little melodramatic. And he has been asking to go to school for months. He was so excited to go and all the way there talked about inviting all his new friends to his birthday party. We went on Tuesday for meet the teacher and I had explained that he wouldn't be staying, we were just going to go in, play, and leave together. So today when we pulled in the parking lot, he asked, "Are you going to leave me here today, Mommy?" Ugh. He meant it with excitement, but the question made me want to turn the car around. I am so glad he's happy about going because if he were apprehensive or worse, crying, I'm pretty sure I wouldn't have made him stay. I'm the only one struggling with this, because Harris and Walker both think it's awesome. Walker didn't ask for his brother once and seemed excited to have both me and the toys all to himself.
And just so you'll apprreciate the normalcy of the picture above, here are the first few I got.

And I'm also thankful he abandoned his alter ego "real cowboy" for the day. He got a pair of boots from his friend Jack, and has been wearing them at all times. That's kind of a surprise because at first he didn't want them on his feet at all. But now he wears them with a dress belt, because that's what "real cowboys" wear.
Someone at Target told him his boots were nice. He said. "Thanks! Do you love them????" Funny, funny. I would have let him wear that ensemble to school like he wanted but was afraid the boots would be hard to play in on the playground. I'm off to go ice his first day of school cupcakes. I briefly considered making homemade something but dismissed that idea quickly.

And while I was taking pics of Harris I tried to take one of Walker, who was completely happy and playing. This is what I ended up with.

As soon as I stopped pointing the camera at him he went back to happy, so I didn't try again. You made your point, Walker.

Taste and see that the LORD is good. Oh, the joys of those who take refuge in him!
Psalm 34:8

Monday, August 22, 2011

Our weekend

We had some friends in from out of town this weekend and I think the little guys are still recovering from all the excitement. This is the ONLY pic I got.
They were having a serious discussion about church while putting away donuts. Or maybe they were just putting away donuts. We had a fun weekend and are always bummed to see our friends go. Harrris drew several pictures today of his friend Jack. He also drew one of me.
I asked what the two lines were and he told me, "Your legs." Obviously.

Tom is also still recovering from this weekend. He got a wild hair and decided to take the boys to the river. By himself.

Harris told me they threw rocks all day. Doesn't Walker look a little dangerous in the pic below? If ever a pic could sum up the stage he's in, I think that might be it.

 Everyone came home looking a little ragged. I'm still impressed that Tom took them by himself. I can tell you I would never in my wildest dreams attempt that. He's brave. He also told me Harris ate non-stop all day.

This morning, he ate a waffle, a packet of oatmeal, eggs/cheese, an ENTIRE hot dog from Costco (they are 1/4 pound!), strawberries, a churro, and was asking for more food when I finally put him to bed. He was starting to get picky on what he wanted so I didn't give him anything else. His stomach was looking a little distended. He doesn't usually eat eggs or hot dogs with enthusiasm so I know he was actually hungry to put it all away. I thought we might share the hot dog but apparently not. Tom had an intern over for dinner the other night, a 20 year old boy. This normal sized kid ate more than Tom and I do put together. That, combined with Harris' consumption the past few days is starting to make me a little nervous. We could potentially have three of these appetites in our house.

While Harris was eating at Costco, Walker was being....Walker. A lady sat down not far from us and kept looking at the boys and I couldn't tell if she was looking because Walker was acting up or just looking because some people like to watch little kids. She ended up coming over and chatting and was SO encouraging. She has two boys (grown) with apparently similar personalities to mine. What would have been really encouraging is if she told me everything becomes significantly easier at 2 1/2 and to just hang on for 6 months, but she didn't. It's just nice to hear someone else that has had the same issues and survived. And really, Walker gets kind of a bad rap. When he's home and in his element, he's a completely different little boy than when we're out and about. He's uncomfortable with new people and takes awhile to warm up, especially when he's not at home. He's such a loving and sweet little guy but people don't get to see that side of him very often. He's constantly trying to kiss Harris, who is usually saying, "Stop it, Walker!" But surely some of the drama will pass as he gets older. Right?? Anyone???? The other night he was in his crib and kept hollering, "Daddeeeee, I love you!" In his garbled, not quite two year old voice, it was just precious. Tom couldn't resist that and went and rocked him till he fell asleep.

Since I've been typing this, Harris has come out twice and asked for help fixing this puzzle. Look at this thing.
I have no idea how they expect a 3 year old to work it. It takes me forever just randomly sliding pieces around till they accidentally line up. I just sent Harris back to his room and told him we'll work on it after naptime. He brought the finished product out a few minutes later.

I'm impressed! And he thinks it's strange that I took pics of the puzzle both times. I guess it is a little strange. When I laid him down again he wanted to say prayers. He asked that Jesus and Santa would come to his birthday party. If you see him in the next few months, chances are good that he'll invite you to his party.  You'll be in good company, with both Jesus and Santa.

Yes, they knew God, but they wouldn't worship him as God or even give him thanks. And they began to think up foolish ideas of what God was like. As a result, their minds became dark and confused.
Romans 1:21

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Date Night Toddler Style

Tom and I have a recent obsession with Smashburger. I like one of their chicken sandwiches and the only calorie information I can find says it has 380. I seriously doubt the accuracy of that but will continue to eat Smashburger guilt free as long as no one proves to me otherwise. So Sunday night we decided we would take a family trip out to eat. We very rarely do this, for obvious reasons. We usually get takeout but I guess we were feeling energetic. So we rounded up the troops to get shoes on, got sippy cups, started packing food for Walker, etc, when the wheels fell off. Walker lost his mind and couldn't regroup so Tom sent Harris and I out to eat and just asked us to bring his home. This turned into the most fun night I've had with Harris in a long time. On the way he asked if we could go eat pizza instead, so we went to a pizza place in Helotes. He was so excited to be out, just the two of us, and was a perfect little gentlemen. He just chattered away and asked questions about everything under the sun. I get time alone with each of them every day, but rarely outside the house in a new environment. I don't know why we hadn't thought to do that. Tom and I are firm believers in date night, out of the house. When I quit working we decided to cut everything non-essential and just add back in what we missed. We both considered date night an essential. And, interestingly enough, we found we didn't actually miss any of the things we had cut out. But anyway, being away from the routine and responsibility of the house makes our conversation better and allows us to focus more on each other. It was the exact same with Harris. In a new environment, and one on one, we had a completely different conversation.  I wish I had a picture of him sitting like a big boy in his chair, asking questions and enjoying being heard. I don't know who had more fun. We will definitely be making time for each of us to spend time away from the house with each boy. Especially before Three comes along.

And I want to write down some things Harris has said lately so I don't forget. Today, he headbutted me right in the stomach. I told him he really needed to be gentle with me because there was a baby in there. He looked at me, shocked, and said, "There's a baby in your tummy??? Why did you eat it?!?!?!?!" Even typing it again makes me laugh. Months ago, I told him, "I'm pooped." He looked at me with an interested expression and said, "You did??" And if Walker is doing anything that looks remotely like he's breaking the rules, Harris immediately finds me and says, "Walker's doing something!" I've also heard, "Walker, that is a NO!" He so wants to be the rule enforcer. Walker's latest thing is answering questions with, "I DO!!" If you ask him if he wants something, it's "I do strawberries!" or "I do goldfish!" If he's really excited he'll do a little dance while he's telling you about it. It's nice to have some more communication with him.

Speaking of Walker, this little guy has a hard head. Somehow, he fell into the wall. LOOK at the damage his head did.

And he somehow doesn't have a bruise on his head and the crying stopped quickly. I don't even know what to say about this but am starting to get concerned for our house if this is what happens before he's even two. Tom and I were both standing right there when he did but neither one of us saw what happened. It's undetermined what role Harris played but pretty sure he was involved in some way.

I went back to church on Sunday, after missing 6 or 7 weeks. It was SO good to be back! A sweet friend met me in the parking lot with lots of enthusiasm and there were hugs and congratulations galore when we got inside. I cannot even express how sweet it was to be back in a place to lift up the name of the Lord with people I love. And the message was exactly what I needed to hear. There was scripture and context that gave guidance directly on an issue I've been praying about and wrestling with for several weeks. I read my Bible and spend time with the Lord without going to church, but there is no replacement for going and being surrounded by other believers, having set aside time to do nothing but worship, and hear a message taught by someone that's taken time to study, pray on, and analyze the scripture. It sets the tone for the week.  So glad to be back. 

"By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another." John 13:35

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Discpline....or lack of

While I was sick, I majorly slacked on disciplining the boys. It has come back to bite me....big-time. Like an animal....they SMELL weakness. And capitalize on it. It's been a total free for all.  Very Lord of the Flies. I ask Harris to do something and he collapses on the floor, wailing that he doesn't want to. I tell Walker to stop doing something and he either just does it faster or ignores me entirely. This week has been a different story and getting back to normal rule enforcement. That means Walker has spent lots of time screaming in his crib and Harris has wilted on the floor in tears several times a day. I think it's been a total shock to their little systems. The look on Walker's face when I made him sit down on the couch instead of climbing all over like he's been doing for 6 weeks was total disbelief. And Harris just keeps telling me, "But I don't want toooooooooo!" as if that should get him off the hook for whatever it is. So it's been a rough week to be a Goolsby boy. But hopefully they'll be back on track soon. I think we're all ready for normalcy. I guess I didn't realize how much energy it actually takes to enforce a standard of behavior. And how fast it flies out the window when you don't!! Those poor things don't know what happened to the "anything goes" life they led in July. If they could remember how great they had it that month they'd probably be talking about July 2011 the rest of their lives.

Harris is starting to get a little suspicious that something is up, I think. We were at Costco and I stopped to look at baby clothes. Harris, in a very snippy tone, said, "Why are you looking at those?!?!?" We haven't told him a baby is on the way yet, since it's so far away. I guess he'll need to know soon. He's been asking for a baby for months so hopefully he'll be excited. He was asking for a baby sister and briefly switched to asking for "another Walker." I'm not sure how much he can understand about a new baby, since he was so little when Walker was born.

Anyway, things are getting back to normal around here and I'm SO thankful to be feeling better.

 Because you are his sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out, “Abba,[c] Father.”  So you are no longer a slave, but God’s child; and since you are his child, God has made you also an heir. Galatians 4:6-7

Friday, August 5, 2011

Light at the end of the tunnel

I am starting to feel a little better. And it's earlier than expected so I really can't complain. I'm still worthless in the evenings but productive enough in the morning that it's ok. I called off the church crew (thank you Angela!!) that came to our rescue. People signed up to bring us meals 3 times a week for ONE MONTH! One month! People I didn't even know signed up. People that lived literally on the other side of town signed up. People that have their own busy lives and far better things to do than bring us dinner signed up too. I was so touched!!! All this and I haven't even been to church in 6 weeks b/c I've felt bad. Isn't that awesome??? Yet another one of the 5,000 things I love about our church.  But I woke up Tuesday and realized that was the 2nd day in a row I didn't feel like death, so it was probably time to take over some of my responsibilities. But thank you so much to everyone that brought us dinner! It was so good and SO SO needed. It took some load off Tom and made our nights much easier. I thought I'd share some of the recipes b/c they were good and who doesn't need more recipes?? 

Chicken Spaghetti  (thanks Rosey!)
1 box spaghetti cooked (whole wheat)
2-3 cups cooked chicken (rotisserie chicken)
1/2 - 1 cup shredded cheese (small handful)
1 can cream of mushroom soup (I used Fat Free)
1 onion, chopped
1/2 cup bell pepper, chopped (I buy the bag of diced onion and bell pepper in the freezer section at HEB and then saute it before adding it)
1/3 cup milk
1 jar (2 oz) chopped pimentos
Sliced mushrooms, optional. I never add it because my family doesn't eat mushrooms.

After cooking the spaghetti, transfer to a large bowl and add the remaining ingredients and mix well. Transfer to a casserole dish and sprinkle more cheese, if desired. Bake uncovered at 375 for 30 minutes.

It came with green beans, with a little butter and lots of lemon pepper. SO GOOD. Harris gobbled the spaghetti up, no problem. Usually there's some sort of threat/incentive to make him try something new.

Another one we liked was the Deceptively Delicious chicken nuggets. Harris had no idea what he was eating and scarfed it all down. He even preferred that to the mac/cheese that was on the side, though he ate that too. And as an added bonus, it came from the Iacona kitchen, which just makes everything taste better. I guess I'm going to have to get out that cookbook again and make some things. They really do work, I'd just forgotten about it.

And I made something so good yesterday. 99% of what I make is just ehhhhh, so it's not bragging for me to say it was good.  This spaghetti sauce was delicious, healthy, and easy. I used chicken italian sausage. And it used the crockpot, which I love.
Last one:

This was so good and I love white beans. It will be perfect in the winter. If the winter ever comes to San Antonio.

This is a random post but one other thing to talk about. Since I have been doing NOTHING in the evenings I've had plenty of time to read. North to the Night was really, really good. It had been recommended to me awhile ago but I just never bought it. It's a story of a guy that has sailed all around the world and decides his next adventure should be sailing to the Arctic and getting his boat iced in for the winter. He wants to learn how the Inuit people survive. Crazy, right? But I could hardly put it down. It in no way made me want to winter in the Arctic though. It also made me want to re-read Cry of the Kalahari. This married couple spent 7 years living in the middle of the Kalahari Desert and talks about the animal interaction and how they survived. It's much better than that sentence makes it sound. I read Unbroken earlier this year and loved it, too. Looks like I'm on a non-fiction adventure kick. If you have any recommendations, let me know.

And I'm really missing worship with our church and grateful for KLove right now.

And this verse is so appropriate right now, since I'm clearly getting by only on the grace of the Lord. I mean, what kind of morning sickness is that I function in the morning and fall to pieces in the evening, when my backup arrives? I'm definitely covered in prayer.

But he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me.  2 Corinthians 12:9

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

New View

A friend gave us an art table, (thank you Paula!!) which is AWESOME and we will use a ton. However, when we got it home it turned out to be waaay too big for the spot I envisioned for it. So we (and that means Tom and Harris) did some re-arranging to accomodate it. We'd been thinking of doing it anyway but needed a push, I guess. We moved all the toys to what used to be a formal living space. We moved that furniture to the living room which means the living room is now TOY FREE. The kid corner of our living room used to look like this:

Beautiful, I know.

It now looks like this!

The playroom has plenty of space for them to wrestle around and drag things out but it's so nice to have one room without toys.
I don't know why the pics are so dark. It looks like we live in a dungeon, but you get the idea. It's the first thing you see when you come in our house but who are we kidding. It's a house of small children so it's fine that it looks that way. Another bonus of having all the toys out of the living room is that they're away from the tv. TV time is not normally an issue. They've always watched one show/day and know not to ask for more because it's not going to happen. However, since I've been sick, they've watched a TON of television. I mean, tons. Some days it's just all I can manage. So the more they watch the more they crack. It's good that they're in a separate room and don't even see it hanging on the wall. It's working out so well. The boys played in here all evening while Tom and I chatted. Since it's too hot to be outside for any length of time, it's nice that they're happy inside for awhile. This room is also right next to a long tiled hallway, so they zoom their riding toys up and down and chase each other through the kitchen. It sounds like the house is going to fall down but we just let them go. It rarely ends in tears so it's one of the better games they play.  I think it's putting my friendships to the test though, because you can't lounge on our comfy couch anymore during playdates. We'll see who comes over anyways.

Leave your orphans; I will protect their lives. Your widows too can trust in me.
Jer 49:11