Thursday, February 28, 2013

packin up and heading out.

today, i was browsing on gap maternity's webpage for some comfy pants and/or shirt.  
i thought, "hmmm.  i think i might buy myself a little hospital outfit.  i can't really do any nesting at the moment, and i feel like i need to do/buy/prepare.  so gap, what do you have for me?"

oh this just gets me giggling, my "babymoon" will not look anything like this.

and so, i thought, "well, i think i'll just write instead"

i'll write about our move that's coming up so quickly!
i'll write about my heart in the process.
and even though in this ever-so-pregnant state my thoughts are all over the place, i'll just write, and share, and document this little crazy season.  because it's our life.
and i want to look back next year and say, hey!  remember last february and march!  weren't they FUN!?


we are moving in less than 2 weeks, i'll be 38 weeks pregnant.

then, for 2 weeks, we will be no-mads, staying at friends' homes and/or hotels until we close on our next house, which happens 2 days before my due date.

the baby may come during that time.  or maybe it won't.

though i'm due 2 days after we close on our new house, we need to have some work done in the home which will take about 2 days.

so, if all the dates work out just on schedule,

we'll be moving into a new house on my due date.

but, God is good.  and really, He has given me this miraculous ability to stay calm and content in these circumstances.  
yes, there have been a couple moments, mostly when i'm alone, that i break down and start crying as i think about this whole situation.....and irrational crazy things fly around my mind .......

but truly, i'm ok.  we're ok.  roman will be ok.

mr leif and i have sat back and just laughed at this situation many times.  we have taken leap of faith after leap of faith just to get our house sold.   and then when we found the home we are buying, that too required more leaps of faith.  we're getting good at trusting.

the beautiful thing about all of this is, what i see as i look back.
i see growth, i see myself being stretched, and i see not my plans NO NOT MY TIMELINE AT ALL!, but the Lord's plans, and they are beautiful.

i've chosen to not write a lot about this house selling/house buying/while preggo process.
it's been really tough on me.  but james 1 has been ringing in my heart anytime i start to think, poor me.
james 1:2-4 "consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, you know that the testing of your faiht produces perseverance.  let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything."

so while my idea of this whole thing would have been to 
a. find out the sex of this baby so i could mentally prepare from the get go
b. sell our house last fall
c. find and close on the next house early this winter
d. have a couple months to get settled and help roman adjust to the new stuff
e. get some baby things washed and ready
f. have a nice cute little hospital bag ready 

well, then, wouldn't life had been swell?
none of those things happened when i thought they should have.

not knowing if we are having a boy or a girl has been a gift.  it has allowed me to take a laid back perspective, yet one filled with joyous anticipation!

packing, moving out, floating around, moving in, and having a baby all happening at the same time?
has been so hard on my "i want to control all the things" self.
but it's been so GOOD for my "i want to control all the things" self.
it's forced me to reach outside of ME and lean on the only thing that was solid, ever present, and promising: my Heavenly Father's plan.....and HIS ways are NOT my ways.  but they are good ways.

so, while i've been unusually silent about such a huge part of my life lately, it's been a season of growth for my heart.  and it's been a season of prayer and trust and hope.  
and it's been a season of examining our desires for moving to a different home, how will we use this home to glorify Him? to serve Him? to serve others? to be hospitable? to provide comfort? to provide community?  how can we return the gift of a bigger home to his kingdom purpose?

and so, we pack.
we take breaks.
we pack some more.
and we pray.

we pray for peace, for patience, for comfort in this end stage of pregnancy.
we pray for our parenting with roman as things get cray cray up in here.
and, we pray that our close date on the new house could be moved up, and that our loan would just move through underwriting as fast as it can.  
[a little sneak peek!]

perhaps we wouldn't have to be nomads then?  perhaps we could get the house set up and a little bit in order before bringing a baby home?  ahhhhh, perhaps.

in the meantime though,
we'll keep on keepin on.
one box at a time :)

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

my dear roman

sweet little 2 year old son,
you've got a wild spirit.
many don't see it outside the walls of our home or outside your comfort zone of family.
most of the time, you come off very shy and scared.
but something ignites within you when you feel safe.
you become wildly unleashed to run and jump and giggle and talk talk talk!
your vocabulary spills out of your mouth in words and phrases that are as sweet as honey to my ears.
your love for machines and trucks and airplanes and all things that go, continues to blossom, as you continue to expand your very detailed repertoire of anything that has a motor.
your passion for building and playing lights up the moment you wake up in the morning, and it doesn't stop until we pry your little fingers off of your legos at night.  you have a gift of playing.  you have a gift of imagination.  you're full of gifts sweet boy.
your obsession for your momma has continued to be just that, an obsession.
though you have successfully been attending the childcare during mommas bible study, and nursery seems to be doing great {finally!} you'd much prefer if you could just be within 2 feet of me, all.the.time.  i've slowly begun to embrace and love that about you.  i used to work so hard each week, planning social outings, just trying to help you become more extroverted, and more comfortable with other children, and less attached to me, but i've seen those attempts continue to be fruitless.
and the Lord has been opening parts of my heart to understanding and rejoicing in the little boy that you are.  one that needs me.  and so, i'll do just that, i'll be there for you :) 
 but let's not put your love for daddy on the back burner.  he lights up your world.
you have him wrapped around your finger, and all you have to do is mention places like donut shop, home depot, and costco, and he whisks you away in his "biiiiiig fast truck" and you two are off on your little outings.  
your daddy is so amazing, sweet roman.  i can leave for a day, for a weekend, for any amount of time and he just glides right into the role of primary care taker.  he knows exactly what you need, how to parent you, how to love you, and your attachment with him is growing like a wildflower.
you've begun to refuse bedtime, as you tell us "i'mmma play just a yiddle bit" over and over again.
but then your daddy picks you up and takes you back to our room.  
there, he puts jammies on and other night time routines commence.
he always ends with reading stories to you.
every night you giggle as he reads.
i sit on the sofa and just listen.
no matter what happened that day, how many times you needed correction and discipline, your giggle soothes my heart.  and your daddy has the perfect magic to send you off into sleepland.
roman, having a father like mr leif is a treasure.
i couldn't ask for a better role model for you.
and so, i pray that you too will grow to be as selfless, serving, humble, and hardworking as your daddy.
and i pray that you will love jesus.  know him, and love him.
i love you little roman joe leif!
your world is about to be rocked as we move from our home to a new home, and add a new baby to our family, all in a couple weeks time, but i know....deep down in my heart, all you need is to be loved well, and you will transition just fine. 
love, your momma.

paint the tub, dub.

since mommy is about to have a baby, her energy level has started falling at rapid rates.
so, we're having to get creative around here.
cleaning up gigantic messes sort of makes me all overwhelmed at the moment.
so, we're keeping the mess in the tub.

oh roman.  i love you like crazy.

Monday, February 25, 2013

baby number two. [36/40 weeks]

little baby love, 
you are growing. growing. growing!

other then some massive heartburn in the evenings, shortness of breath any time i lay on my back or lounge back in a chair, and a fear that your head is literally as things are just swell :)

i keep wondering, yikes.  how do women have 4 kids? this time around things are so much different than my first!  it's all so wonderful though.  truly.  just different.  maybe more difficult and uncomfortable?  but beautiful.  a gift.  and i'm cherishing  these preggo moments.

oh little baby, you move like crazy.  i suppose it's moves like jagger?
your big brother is pretty much in love with you.  he gives you hugs and kisses every day.  
and he frequently asks me if the baby is going to come out.  and tells me i have a "BIIIIIIIIIIG tummy".
oh, pregnancy through a 2 year old's eyes is an entertaining thing :)

little baby, i still have no clue if you are a boy or a girl.
sometimes i catch myself assuming that it's not decided until you actually come out!
it's like i forget you're already a little boy or little girl waiting to meet us!
i have complete contentment with whatever gender you are :)
we are just here waiting, ready to hug and love and squeeze and snuggle you right up!

i've had a few nights of some contractions.  but nothing too alarming!
it has given me quite the flash back to being pregnant the first time!
though they are so painful, the absolute full on tightness of my stomach when i'm having a contracting is crazy! mr leif and i sort of are amazed at the wonder of it all :)  
my check ups are going well, so we are just fine having a few contractions every now and then!

however.... i'd much prefer this baby to stay in there until my due date.  or EVEN AFTER.
yes.  little one, i'm actually ok if you want to stay inside momma for a bit longer than normal.
we are packing up our house [it sold!] and will be "homeless" for about two weeks between this home and the next one!  so we don't exactly have a home to bring you until 2 days before your due date :)
so, you just wait, ok?
thank you :)

and now, 
for some photos of the bump!
[erg, did i mention i got lots of stretch marks this time around? hmph there goes that bikini i was dying to wear. HA. ha. HA. kidding.]


[30 weeks.  little sidekick and me.  on our way to the baby doctor]

[32 weeks.  takin this babybump out on the town]

 [32 week check up.  that little dude on the left got to participate today]

[he was a natural]

[33 weeks.  day 3 hair.  comfy clothes..... the uze]

[34 weeks.  momma's hiding from a certain 2 year old, in the laundry room, with her staples: tj's white cheddar puffs and water.  sometimes we "bump heads" and momma just needs a break and a prayer.] 

[35 weeks.  roman is pumped to hear the "beat beat" again.  this time, he got to hold the monitor and push the buttons.  he was stoked.  momma was too.]

a sappy post about my net.

it's sort of interesting, i can scroll through instagram and facebook and any other random type of social media out there and see groups of friends celebrating, sharing, loving, and doing life together.  
there's pictures and status updates and posts written about their love for their friends.

God created us women with this need, this craving, for friendships.  for connecting.
some of us like to connect with just one or two, some of us want a bigger number in our circle, and some? might be happy with a room full of their people.

moving from a small town to a mid sized city for college allowed me to keep my childhood friends, and add college friends.  most of the time those two circles could intercept.  there were mutual friends, life long friends and new friends all in my pot of life.

then we moved. 6 years ago.
we moved to a new city.  just me and my man.

we spent many evenings, in our first year here, devouring awkward amounts of chips and salsa from the mi ranchito across from our appartment.  we made friends with the bar tender, who typically gave us both discounts on our meals, free espinaca, and wouldn't always charge us for our dos equis.  
then, we would walk back to our apartment, dreaming of our life that lay ahead of us.  silly little 22 and 23 year olds.  just the two of us.  it was a good year.

during that year we found a good group of friends.  friends who were in our season of life.  friends who enjoyed our love of wine, grilling out, camping, you know.....all those things you do before you have kids :)
however, most of that group has moved away. sniff.sniff.

then crazy things happened.
we became parents and i quit my job.

did you know how lonely being a stay at home mom can be?
i think i had more of a relationship with my laundry than i did any other female for about a month.
but.  i put my big girl boots on braved what shouldn't of been feared in the first place, our moms group at church.

i didn't go for about a month because i wasn't sure what to wear.  i wasn't sure what how roman would act, or if the other moms would mind when he refused to let me put him anywhere but next to me.  i wasn't sure what they would really be talking about, or if i, a mom of one little 1 year old would even fit in.  i mean, lots of them had been in this momma gig for a while now.  i was just a newbie, scrambling around trying to figure out what my new daily schedule would like as a mom that had no where to go.

but then i went.
and it was wonderful.
any judgement i feared was non existent.  like, never ever even there.
any status quo for how to dress? nada.  you could forget to put a bra on and show up in sweats and still be greeted with smiles.
a clingy kid? i don't even think anyone noticed.  
and oh........ the wisdom that was shared, the knowledge i began to receive, and the presence of Jesus that radiated the room was astounding.

though most of these girls i already knew, i was new to their "mom group".  i was anxious and overwhelmed in my role of momma.  but i was welcomed, as they welcome anyone, with open arms, ready to embrace, support, listen to, encourage, and love.

it's been such a beautiful gift from God, to look back and seem my relationship with these girls, these women, these mommas, continue to grow.
it's blossomed into a sisterhood.
with having no family close by, and being the people person i am, i crave a net of friends.

these women are my net.
whether it's emails of encouragement,
texts to share what random shenanigan a child has done,
lonely calls when husbands are working late, 
wednesday mornings as we engage at bible study,
or winks, nods, and looks of "i'm thinking of you, but my kid is running around like a madman and we need to go get him lunch" on sunday mornings, 
they are doing life with me.
and they are loving me well.
and i am so grateful.

we all have different situations, different family make-ups, different stories.
but we have one thing in common:  we all love jesus.
and when you love jesus, like really love jesus, you radiate with compassion, encouragement, and love.
and for women who are in this season of motherhood, those three things are like oxygen.

i am so thankful that my heavenly father has given me this group of girls.
in the midst of a somewhat insane season of life [36 weeks preggo and moving in 2 weeks] God has truly supplied me with all that i need.  and these girls are a big part of that supply.

thank you jesus.

[some of the girls in our group, showering me with cheese cake, coffee and a gift for baby #2]

Sunday, February 17, 2013

a bright future.

dear roman.
you are almost 2 and a half years old.
2 years and 4 months to be exact.

i don't particularly enjoy thinking about your future, mostly for selfish reasons....
i'd rather not think about you dating,
i'd rather not think about you going off to college,
i'd rather not think about you getting married,
i just want to think that you'll be my little boy forever. ok? ok!

however, lately, you've been exploring your future a bit.
it seems as if you're dabbling into a little career research, to see what might suit you best as a provider some day.

i thought i might take a few notes.
you know, in case your high school days come and you aren't sure what to pursue in college?
maybe this little list could guide you?
dude, you're screwed.  your momma is an ex-school counselor, and i've got gobs of info on career prep that's just begging to be poured out into your eager little ears..... hehehe [cue: evil laugh]

so let's begin, shall we?
like i said.  you've begun researching.
we hit up the library last saturday for our first successful library visit.
unsuccessful trips in the past have included things like:
throwing books, running through the isles, jumping off the stairs, and throwing books.
but this time, you rose up to a whole new level.
we got right down to business.
 after we did some research, we began trying out a few careers you found interesting.
first up?  daddy's office.
you seemed like a natural sitting behind a desk.
cookie? check.
feet up? check.
all the ladies swooning? check.
 next, you spent a little time in the tech department:  aka, daddy's ipad.
you picked up ipad skills as such a rapid rate, it sort of freaked me out.
you slide the little thing over, and then sort through the apps til you find anything associated with trucks, or puzzles, or whatever animated buttons your pudgy little fingers can find.
i don't think technology is a great choice for you though.
you see, every time i tell you it's time to be "done" with the ipad, you freak out.
it's like WW3 up in here.
and you also started demanding the ipad upon waking up in the morning.
i sort of had to hide any trace of the ipad now.
[it's hidden in daddy's beside table]
i think another career might be better suited for you, your wife won't be to hip on coming home to a gamer.
 we spent a little time in the culinary arts department.
you really shine when you start to whip up a batch of cupcakes [photo below]
you're so proud of your work, and you get the biggest thrill of watching your customers [me] devour your food.
i do think the culinary arts would be a great area for you.
and i DO know that your wife would love to have a husband that cooks.  i know your momma does!
 romes, you're holding onto your rural nebraska roots.  
you have a slight passion for all things farm.
so, it didn't surprise me when you wanted to try out horseback riding.
while you were hesitant at first, we've been back a few times, and you're really becoming a natural.
yee-haw, dude.  yee-haw.
 and, it came with no surprise that you truly excel in anything that includes the outdoors.
you love manual labor.
and while, manual labor could get real old, real fast, i think you might like to get a few part time manual labor jobs when you get a bit older.  
i already have plans for you to mow the yard, take trash out, pull weeds, and of course, i'd be delighted to help you make little business cards to pass out around the neighborhood!  it's never too early to start earning your keep, little one.
he. hehehe.
 construction will always be your second love.
i am, of course, your first.
but construction? big machines? you go caraaaaaaazy up in here with anything construction.
below, you'll see, you've constructed a crane.  
and i think you're about to load something up in your loader.
 you might consider being a weather man as well.
you're pretty interested in finding the sun, the moon, whether or not it's dark out, when it's snowing or raining, and you really love to talk about things "wayyyy up up up up in the sky"
 now.  listen dude.
home depot is probably right next to your love of construction.
and home depot means tools and wood and forklifts and "stuff"
so, naturally, daddy's garage is a mini mecca for you.
yes.  an orange home depot apron would look mighty fine on you.
 in case you weren't sold on my previous declaration,
you're obsessed with construction stuff.
[cue: nakey toddler in a hardhat]
 however, don't settle too fast.
your future in the music department is starting to look a little brighter with each dance session we have.
here you are with your new (thrifted) guitar.
you pluck those strings.  you shake that booty.  and you work it for yo momma.
baby got back.
 and, we'll end with a lovely little photo of you dabbling in the culinary arts again.
here you're making cookies.
you want to do everything "by myself, momma".
so all of these "fun" little things i try and do with you become little disasters because you refuse my help.
you little independent chef!
look at you go!
and that concludes our little career prep research project.
roman, i think your future's looking bright.
but seriously little one, i'll be rooting for you, whatever you decide to do!
and if you want to live with your momma forever? that would be awesome.
you really shouldn't ever grow up.

Friday, February 15, 2013

let's talk about food, baby.

this blog is actually going to get "foodie" all up on ya.
i know.
who woulda thought?

lindsey? writing about the kitchen?
for those of you who don't know me well,
you'll know that while i DO like to cook.....i get anxious and easily frustrated, and now that i have a kid pulling at my shirt NON stop when i try to cook, i've resorted to allowing mr leif do lots of the cooking.
because scary things happen when i'm anxious and easily frustrated in the kitchen.
pyrex bowls get set on stove tops and blow up.
butter gets melted in the microwave without realizing there's eggs in the bowl too, then you get scrambled eggs along with your melted butter.  and those eggs needed to be beat in the mixer, not scrambled.
you know, silly things like that.  

but i actually made something really good.
it's good.
it's healthy.
it's colorful.
it's creamy.
 but before y'all get all "whoa! she CAN cook" up in here.....
the rest of this post is about things i've been eating that i really haven't necessarily cooked.
can i get a "what what" for ice cream sandwiches?
yes. that's what i thought.
you want one now too.
 and hello.
krispy kreme donuts.
they are far too close to our house.
mr leif and roman deliver donuts on saturdays.
to me.
normally, they go to fluffy fresh donuts just a couple blocks away.
but one time they went to krispy kreme.
and momma didn't mind.
 these are roman's pancake waffles for me.
he cooks me things with his playdough.
and his play dough is all mixed together.
all the beautiful colors, ugh, now big lumps of brown.
and he doesn't even care?
where is his eye for pretty things, people?
sigh.  perhaps, i'll just embrace his love for cooking, and continue fake eating these pancake waffles.
[i know.  i know.  they look like poo.]
 mr leif made me mini cheesecakes.
he said he found them on my pinterest board.
hotdang. they were good.
he claims they're not too unhealthy.
he used greek yogurt.
 on valentine's day eve, i called mr leif on his way home from work and said i really wanted belgian waffles with homemade whip cream and fresh strawberries.
mr leif gets all excited when i make meal requests.
i know, i shouldn't brag, but i can't help it.
a wife is allowed to brag about her husband.  it's good for their marriage. amen.
so anyways, he really loves to cook and normally i don't have much of an appetite.
so he was all pumped to make me this.
he even put the kitchen aid mixer bowl in the freezer as a prep step, he claims it's better for whipping the whip cream.
man i love him.
[is your mouth watering over this photo?]
so there!
a foodie post.
given to you by 34 week preggo, me.

warning: 78 photos and my family came to visit

i just dumped 78 photos from my phone into my picasa web albums.
watch out!
and, if time allows.
i might actually blog about what we've been up to.....
like, why i've been "hiding"
and how my heart has been continually stretched, as the Lord moves and works and completes HIS will.

let's start with a fun little light post.

some of my fambam came to town.
they're a riot.

we did things, like shop and eat.
and eat and shop.
and laugh and {toot?}
and {toot?} and laugh!

they're crazy good.

we ate ourselves silly at the melting pot.
i mean. seriously.  i know this place has been around for a while now.
but every time i go, i just really have a good time.
i've never really had that fantastic of service.
but there's something about dipping things into cheese and chocolate.
it just makes for a good time.
add to that, my mom and 2 of her crazy sisters, and my cousin?
then you're in for a real treat.
they put us in the back corner.
and truly, that's where we belong.
we're loud.
we're obnoxious.
and we love cheese.

have you SEEN anthro lately?
bum bum.... bum bum... bum bum..
[that's my heart beating, for anthro]
one of each please.

but really.
it's always such a delight to have family come to visit :)
i dream of hosting my aunties and cousins more often.
because when a group of small town nebraskans meet the city?
it gets cray cray up in here.

Monday, February 4, 2013


lately, i find myself scratching down little memories into my mind, some make it onto paper, some become their own little 'notes' on my iphone, and most of them are documented with instagram.  
i heart ig :)
[you can follow me @ lindseyleif]

i feel like this season of life, with a little blooming toddler, is so full of things i never want to forget....his phrases, the things he does, my dance moves he tries to mimic, etc....and then the days just fly by, and i'm scared i won't remember all the little things.
i know i'll look back and remember this time as such a sweet season of life, chalked full of little toddler moments, but i feel i'm gripping onto each day, fearful they'll disappear from my mind.  
some may make it into the long term memory bank, but most of them? they'll slip away.  
it makes me sad.

so, i want to be better about keeping up around here.
and, as with anything in life, there are seasons, an ebb and flow.
and lately, i haven't blogged very much. i so badly, want to pour our my heart about parenting, marriage, life with selling and buying a home, you know....all things deep. 
but posts like that are time consuming.  and at the moment, i'm not making them a priority. 

so, i'm going to try and keep things short and simple around here.
just daily tidbits.
and maybe here and there i'll blast you with something long, deep, emotional, and passionate.

but for now?  i'll just talk about today.

february 4. 2013.

today is the anniversary of mr leif and i beginning to date.
on this day, 12 years ago, mr leif met me outside my car, by a friend's house (we were making posters for parents night, a high school basketball event) and he ever-so-romantically suggested that we "try this again" because the first time we "started going out" 4 months prior, failed, due to the fact that he was too shy to talk to me. and you can't really date if you don't talk to someone.  so, i broke it off, and he came back begging for me, for a second chance.  (or that's how i like to put it, ha.)
he still struggled to stop by my locker in between classes for the remainder of our high school careers, like i thought a boyfriend should do, but somehow we made it through that treacherous time of rocky communication (cue:sarcasm), got married and heck, we even have a family :)  ahhhh....the things that i thought were major back when i was 16.  hilarious. but so real to a teenager.  i mean, between classes locker talk? pshhhhh. it was a MUST!

today romes and i (and my mom!  she was still here after a weekend visit!) went to my 32 week checkup!  
i thought i'd have high blood pressure, due to my life being a little cray cray right now.
but everything is just right, says the doc.
our baby is due on Good Friday.  i didn't think about having an easter baby until recently.  
it sort of makes me all giddy to have my own little baby chic.  
chirp. chirp.
today, roman got to find the baby's heartbeat.
it's been SO fun to see romes grow through each doctor's visit.
when we first started going in, he struggled with the idea of someone messing with his momma.
then, it developed into him sitting nicely, but closing his eyes any time a nurse or doctor would try to talk to him while they "worked on me"
soon, it developed into him communicating with them, answering their "how old are you?" questions with "two!" and "what's your name?" with "roman joe leif!" (sounding a bit more like woman joe yeif)
and now, my sweet little man is actually standing up, next to the nurses and doctors talking to them.

today, when dr nichols came in, he asked her, "where's the beat beat?" (wanting to hear the heart beat)
she responded by lifting him up, setting him next to me, and guiding him to find the heartbeat.
he didn't skip a beat (pun totally intended). seriously.  he was all calm and totally into his little task.
it was the sweatest moment, and you betcha, my mom took not one but multiple different angled cell phone pics.  because that's how she rolls.
so, thank you momma for capturing this sweet little moment :)

today we played puppies.
we play animals almost every day.  puppies, cows, horsies, kitties, and sometimes he'll add random things like snakes and beetles and bumblebees, so that i scream and say "no! yucky!"
it was getting late, and obvi, with his pants already missing, we were transitioning into our bedtime jammies sesh, but we still had some time for playing puppies.
his little bark is the sweetest.
and the fact that he went to his room and got a couple of puppy friends to join us?  gahhhhhh.  
he just makes my heart do flip flops.

mr leif is finishing a friend's basement a few evenings a week for the next couple months, so this makes our days extra long.   on nights like these, when i'm single-momming it, i'm so grateful for the energy to keep up with him, the patience to stay positive at the end of the day, and the desire, to soak up all these little moments before we add the baby to this little family. 

i love my little puppy.