Monday, June 17, 2013

i have two boys. TWO!

i have to chuckle.
never did i ever imagine having two sons.
when i drempt of children, i think i always trailed down the path of having daughters.
sons too, but most definitely daughters.
i always imagined how i would dress them.
i imagined going through life with them, experiencing the things i once experienced.
you know, girly sleep overs, dances, prom, etc.
and now i kind of wonder if i will ever get a daughter?
we shall see!

for now though, i don't quite mind only having boys :)
i love that i get to raise these little men.
these little leaders.
besides, mr leif gets to teach these mini men how to grow up and be just like him!

sometimes i just sit back and think how funny it is... our plan vs God's plan.
we have these visions, these ideas, and sometimes they just won't ever play out.
and it might be hard to accept, but truly, God's plan is bigger and better.

these little boys are just beginning their relationship that will last a lifetime.
and, WHOA. i get to help mold it.
how awesome is that!
and how scary is that!

it's pretty neat to see such a tender place in roman's heart open up, and let archer in.

he hasn't been too rough with him yet,
and if he does bump him (once a book to the forehead, and the other time a knee to the cheek. oops) roman is so quick to say, "oh, sorry archa" and "you're ok archa".

often times i'll lay archer down and ask roman to play by him so that archer can watch him.
little romes doesn't skip a beat.
he loves telling archer all about his machines :)

and i'm quite certain archer man loves to listen.

we've now reached the status where i can trust roman to be in the same room as archer and not worry that he will throw a ball at his face, or something to that extent.
when we first brought archer home, there were all those little worries.
but now, i really have a trusting peace that roman has his brother's best interest in mind :)

ask me in a year, when A is swiping his toys away.
it's gonna be CRAY up in here.

 but really,
their relationship is in full bloom.

and i'm SO grateful that i get to be home with them each day to watch it bloom.
God is so good to me, even though i can be so impatient and selfish with my parenting, He continues to be faithful and sustain me through the crazy moments, forgive me for my mistakes, and give me mercies each morning to try again with these two little boys.

oh, my heart is full.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

little roman joe

well hey there romy.
(you like to say, "well hey there kitty cat!" and then giggle really hard)

i wanted to write a post full of random things about you.
because, well, you light up our world :)

and, i have all this pictures from april and may that need to be used. right?!
 romes, you're still obsessed with your paci.  currently you trek 4 of them around the house.
(even though i try and make you keep them in your bed, for sleeping only)
they literally are like your little friends.
as long as i'm not stickin them in your lunch box for school, i'm cool with you having them for a wee bit longer.
i keep telling myself, by THREE you'll be rid of the paci's!
and then i also say by THREE you'll be potty trained.
we'll see how those things go.
HA! haha.
but really, my goal for you this summer is to get rid of those dipes!
you, however, don't have much of an interest in being potty trained yet.
so i'm sure it will be really fun.
 your love for the great outdoors is contagious.
although lately, you've been scared of the bugs.  and then you sprint inside, declaring, 
"momma! there's a bug!"
oh dear,
i've created a monster.
i'm not a huge bug fan.  at all.  and i think i've passed it on to my son.
my BOY who could literally roll around in the mud all day and not care....HE is scared of bugs.
 you don't seem to have an issue with the front yard though,
it's like you don't think there's bugs in the front or something.
or maybe it's the fact that you've met the neighbors.
and you've fallen in love with them.

especially "riwey" (riley) our 12 year old cute little red head neighbor girl.
and she's pretty smitten with you too romes.
she even knocks on our door to see if you want to come play!
um, can momma get a high five?  a fist pump? a cartwheel?  YES! AMEN!  

oh romy, you're addicted to apple juice.
it's my fault, i know.
and it's kinda funny....when i give you water you politely say, "no thanks to water, i want apple juice momma".
haha.  ooooops.
but it's kinda funny, because i actually water it down soooo much you can barely taste the apple juice.
but that tiny little hint of flavoring gets you every time.
you down those drinks all day long.
we must potty train you. 
i'm sick of changing your dipes.
K? K!
 as always, you think helping dadda around the house is the best thing.  EVER.
i don't complain.  by the end of the day, i'm rather OK with having you hang with your dadda for a while.
sometimes momma needs a wittle break :)
here you're scraping the walls, getting them prepped for painting!
go romy go.
 and my oh my.
quite the little independent fellla.
you just tote that stool around anywhere you please...
and then you reach up and grab everything you're not supposed to.
poor little guy, you don't quite understand that some things actually AREN'T for your little 2 year old self!
like momma's red vines.
back away from my stash.
 of course, like every momma, i think you are simply the smartest little dude ever.
i love your little desire to learn.
your quest to ask everything about everything.
and your vocabulary that keeps blowing my mind.
your attention span is about 3.4 seconds though, which makes any crafty thing i do with you just dandy.
it's like i spend all this time and energy getting stuff out for 3.4 seconds of attentive play, and then poof.  
you don't care anymore.
and it's destroy, destroy, DESTROY!
you press so hard on the markers
you break the crayons.
and aside from making pancake after pancake with your play dough, i often times find it in the tire treads of your loaders and back hoes. 
my little ocd self struggles with this.
but each day i just have to shrug, sigh, and declare, YOU'RE A BOY!
and, I'M A GIRL!
and, i'll probably never understand your messy destructive ways :)
 you love to snuggle with me :)
daily, i hear, "lay with me momma" and "take a nap with me momma"
i think we'd share the bed each night if you had it your way.
and my favorite thing to do is wrap you up when you are watching a show, and hold you like the little baby you once were.  
but you're huge now.
so, it usually looks like me with my arms wrapped around you smoochin your cheeks while you try and peel away to catch the end of barney.
 i have another post planned about you and your little brother.
but i have to say it.
you're a pro.
with one minor issue.
you don't like when he cries.
and like i mentioned in the previous post...
you love to scream, "MOM!!! ARCHA!!!!"  "MOM FEED ARCHA!!!!"
you've always struggled with loud noises, so i totally saw this one comin :)
 overall little romes, you're a pretty good eater.
you've started using the excuse, "i wanna take a break" or "my tummy hurts" to get out of eating things you don't want to though.  it's kinda cute.
we aren't really crazy eaters around here though, pretty predictable and kid friendly foods :)
but your go to breakfasts are oatmeal with blueberries, pancakes, cinnamon life cereal, cinnamon rolls, yogurt and apple sauce 
and i think you could eat crackers and dip for lunch every day (which is just wheat thins and laughing cow cheese)
and then you would be fine and dandy if you had mac n cheese, or "noodles" each night for dinner.
i don't blame ya, kid.
have you guys had noodles and company's wisconsin mac and cheese? to die.
oh dear, and then there's daddy's phone.
you're obsessed with it.
it's no different then momma's phone except for that it's black, and mine is white. can open up youtube and find truck videos on daddy's and i've hidden my youtube app on mine :)
 yep, can't quite get enough of those loader videos.
(crazy how something can be so boring for me, and totally the best thing ever for him)
 gma linda scored this fire truck for you at a garage sale.
and now you ask to go to garage sales a lot.
i tried taking you out to a few a couple weekends ago and you thought you could just take whatever you wanted from other people's garages.
not quite how it works,
but nice try.
 roman, you mow the yard every day.
and any time there's a neighbor out mowing, you hear their mower instantly and run up and tell me that you need to go "help the neighbor guy mow"
you are such a little worker roman.
it's my prayer that you will stay so diligent and hard working!! 
you're gonna make a wonderful provider some day :)
 oh.  and then there's this.
you love to read now.
and it's like the sweetest thing next to hearing archer coo.
you read in a quiet little voice and do quite an awesome job telling your own little story line.
in a couple years i'll be busting out my old teacher tubs and do a running record on you.
gotta figure out that reading level.
i hope they get rid of running records before you get to school.
i think they're kinda silly.
at the end of may, you went home with gma abbi to nebraska for 
i didn't think i could take it any longer, your daddy went to meet gma half way on a thursday night and i was like a little kid on christmas eve .... SO giddy for you to get home!
i got a text saying you guys were just a few blocks away and i sprinted over to the front window and waited SO impatiently for you to pull up to the driveway!

 the first thing you said to me was, "i love you momma"
and your daddy promises he didn't tell you to say it.
so obviously, my heart swells up every time i think about that sweet little greeting from you.
oh roman joy, never leave me again!!!!!
unless, of course, it means your daddy and i are off on some wild vacation, then i think it's ok if you would stay at gma's house again :)
but probably not for a long time.
i missed you so much!!!!!
and, by the way, you did fabulous!
 yes, you now proudly declare that you are "2 and a half".
i love that you are still 2.
i don't want you to be 3.
it's too old.
stay little forever sweet romy roo?
please oh please??


Friday, June 14, 2013

a trip back home

home, home on the range.
where the deer and the toddler boys play.

 [roman and my cousin katie's son hudson]

we love going back home to nebraska.
i know i say it all the time, but we have beautiful, huge, amazing families.
they love us and support us and when we are back home it just feels so GOOD!

we love kansas city, but there's something about having your family love on your children.
it's bliss.

my mom and her sisters all live in the same little town of 1200 people.
so when we go back, we get to see so many aunties and cousins :)
i'm so happy that roman is starting to develop relationships with them.  
i have countless memories growing up with my cousins, i so badly desire that for him!

archer was the star of the show.
here he is just chillaxin on gma while we sip some wine :)
we had a bbq at my mom's house one night, and i dont think i saw the kid once.
he just got passed from one beautiful cousin to the next :)

roman didn't get left out either, i mean, the dude has his gma's wrapped around his finger.

every day he would wait by gma linda's window to see if his uncle cam would walk over after school!
it was the cutest little site to see.
he even got to help gpa kurt plant some corn

and sweet aunty cousin Vanessa chased him around for hours

i didn't really want to leave nebraska.
 i didn't want to come home to my strange new house.
i didn't want to be alone with my little boys.
i didn't think i could do it.

it was so easy to be back "home".
archer loved it......

romy loved it...

and i loved it.

and while we were there, this little dude turned one month! 

but, alas, home to KC we had to go.
and let me tell ya. it was quite the drive.
archer screamed a lot, 
so then roman screamed, "get me outta here!!!"  and "mom!! otcha's cryin!!!"

it was a doozy.

but soon enough we were back home.
ready to take on a new month, welcome MAY!
and welcome foot massages.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

april showers.

april was a hard month for me.
my sister was here for over for a few days in the beginning, 
[hi little niece, hazel!!!]
and my mom stayed for another week,
but then i was mostly solo. with the boys. in a home that was all torn apart.
though my mom and sister had done some unpacking for me, most of our things were (and still are!) in boxes.
walls were attempting to get painted, floors were being finished up, little projects here and there were popping up around the house, leaving me to live in a construction zone while mr leif went off to work.

i so badly (and still do!) want to set up our home.  
i want to paint, decorate, unpack my "decor" boxes, go thrifting to find new treasures for this home, and arrange our furniture to flow better.... 
but it seems like all i could do was feed and change the boys, remember to eat  and brush my teeth, and occasionally attempt to leave the house for a trip to the park.

from these photos, it looks like all we did was sleep the month of april away...
and, well, there were times i wish i could have :)

sweet little archer had an interesting first month.
his first couple weeks were great.  although i quickly dealt with his straining pain after every feeding.
it seemed like his gassiness and stomach pains came far too often and made our feedings miserable.
i tried gas drops, gripe water, and even cut out dairy for a week, and nothing seemed to work.
so i switched to exclusively pumping, thinking he would get less air with a bottle?  
he drank like a champ.
however, by the end of the month, i learned that pumping, and then feeding with a bottle, while having a toddler run wild was not going to work!
by the time june came, we worked ourselves back to nursing again.
whew.  what a roller coaster these little issues can be.
the boys began to bond.
which actually looks like roman running up to archer screaming, "hey otcha!"
followed by him lightly poking his cheeks yelling, "tink!"
brotherly love?
there were moments when i felt regret.
why did we move?
we could have just made it work in our old house, the boys could have just shared a room, 
at least we wouldn't be in this strange place.  and at least i wouldn't so alone, right?

there were evenings with these :)
 and handfuls and handfuls of these :)
 and i desperately clung to my jesus calling devotional.
i'd read days and days of devotionals at a time.  just for a glimpse of hope. 
and this verse, i clung to it:

if you've ever felt like your world was too much to handle, you'll appreciate this verse.
it might seem silly to some, too feel so overwhelmed in my situation.
but hormones are cray.
and sleep deprivations is cray cray.
and wild toddlers are really cray.

and then,
one day some happy mail came :)
 [my new solly baby wrap, and a package from my sis!]

and some sweet cuddling with my boys :)

and before i knew it things were starting to seem manageable.
archer is truly a delightful baby.
just look at him :)
 i remember my first couple months with roman were difficult.
this time around i feel like the yucky phase lasted about a month and a half, about mid may things started getting better.
i'm so grateful for my friends, the prayers, little texts and visits and countless cookie deliveries, (thanks jess!) were like little lifelines to get me through.
i love that i can be honest with them and tell them when i'm struggling, and they're right there ready to pick up the slack.  
and i think my sister called every day for a while to make sure i was ok :)
God has been so good to me, in giving me this support system here in KC, away from family.
these girls are family!

motherhood is so good.  so hard.  so scary.  and so SO beautiful.
it's refinement at its best, and i'm so thankful that the Lord is using these little boys to refine me.
i'm a lucky momma :)