Friday, December 25, 2009

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Random

I'm super excited that basketball season is starting up, and I'm even more excited that the Longhorns are ranked as the number 2 team! How exciting!

It's also super nice to be off from school. I am really enjoying not having to get up and go to work. I can't believe that Christmas is just 2 days away. Which means that we are 2 days away from finding out if we'll be having a little boy or a little girl.

I'm going to let you know that there may not be any blogs for a week or so... or if I do post it will probably be short and sweet. Life is so crazy and I just can't commit to providing information. If I get around to it, then I'll throw something up- but don't expect anything. After the holidays when life gets back to normal I promise to fill you in on everything.

On that note, I hope that you and your family have a very Merry Christmas!
Photobucket

Monday, December 21, 2009

National Finals Rodeo

I know I've been so bad about posting lately... sorry. A week ago some of Lantz's friends from LCU, Aaron and Deanna, were in Las Vegas and we met up with them for lunch on Saturday. While we were at lunch they invited us to the National Finals Rodeo that night because they had 2 extra tickets. This was HUGE!!! We have lived in Las Vegas for 5 years and we've never been because tickets are so stinking expensive. It's funny because the Friday night before we went to lunch with Aaron and Deanna Lantz and I were talking about how we really wanted to go and that in the future we'd have to try to get tickets. So, needless to say when they invited us we were like totally pumped up.

If you don't know anything about rodeos, the NFR is like the Superbowl of the rodeo world. It was so much fun to watch the best of the best compete. My favorite thing we saw was the bull riding and the barrel racing.

Here are some pictures of the night:

Photobucket

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Christmas Video/Card

Okay... Sorry this is up so late. I meant to post this up last week, but it just didn't happen. This is our 2009 Christmas Card/Video. Hope you enjoy!

Christmas Greeting 2009 from Lantz Howard on Vimeo.

Merry Christmas from our home to yours!

Photobucket

Saturday, December 19, 2009

5 Year Celebration!

Lantz and I have truly celebrated our 5 year anniversary in a perfect way for the two of us. I guess that the celebration technically started this summer with our amazing 17 day European backpacking trip. What an awesome trip for us to have experienced together, especially before children. I am so thankful to God for allowing us the means and ability to take that trip- I know that it has done nothing but strengthened our marriage.

Last night on the "official" day we had a great night relaxing at home. We went on a nice walk with Cooper and then did one of our favorite things- grilled out! We enjoyed some yummy T-bone steaks with grilled asparagus, corn on the cob, cheesy bread, and sweet tea. It was a wonderful night toped off with laying on the couch and watching a movie!

We had talked about "no gifts" this year since we spent so much on our Europe trip, but I guess that great minds think alike. We both ended up getting each other sweet cards and some really nice gifts. Lantz surprised me with a few small gifts (stretchy fleece sweat pants and cozy grey house slippers) and a anniversary band that it is half a size bigger so when my fingers swell in pregnancy I can still have something on my hand to show the world that I am a taken woman. Right now it is safely being worn under my wedding ring (although that has really got to be cleaned because this new one makes it look dingy). I was not expecting all of this to be perfectly honest with you- but it's all so exciting!



So, I can't show you a picture of what I got Lantz, because he doesn't exactly have it yet. For the past two years he has really been wanting a guitar. I tried to look at some online, and I called around- but there are lots of different kinds of guitars out there. I know that Lantz has been patiently looking and looking and so I know he has a certain one or two in mind. So, instead of buying the "wrong" one, I wrote out a detailed note (with pictures) explaining that he is to start looking for a good deal on a new guitar. I only asked that he buy it before May because once our sweet little one arrives I'm sure our money distribution will be spent very differently.

It seems that we both had the same idea. We know that life is about to flip upside down for us and that we won't be spending money on ourselves. We know that "splurges" will soon be a thing of the past, so before our different "money mind-set" kicked in- we both wanted to do something special for the other one. Isn't it funny how we think so much alike? I guess that's 5 years for you.... I can only imagine what it'll be like when we hit 50 years!

What a great 5 year anniversary!
Photobucket

Friday, December 18, 2009

5 Amazing Years

Today, December 18th is our 5 year anniversary. In so many ways, I can't believe that we've been married for that long, and yet at the same time it seems that I can't picture us not together. I have truly been blessed with the most God-fearing and loving man that I know. Daily Lantz helps me to want to be a better person and encourages me in my faith. There are not enough good words to describe the man that I am married to, but I have so much joy in knowing that God put us together.

These past 5 years have been the best years of my life, and I get so excited thinking about the path that lays in front of us. As wonderful as a husband that Lantz is, I know he will be the most incredible dad ever..... that is one of the main reasons I fell in love with him- because of his love for children.

Today, as I reflect on my marriage, I can't help but feel truly grateful. I am in so many ways blessed by the Lord- but I feel the best gift he has ever given me on this side of the cross is my sweet Lantz.

5 years ago:


Celebrating 5 years this summer in Europe :

Excited for the road ahead of us:


Thank you Lantz for the past 5 years. I look forward to many more with you at my side. I am so proud of the man that you are, and I feel honored that you chose me! You are amazing and I'm thankful that I get to call you my husband.
Photobucket

Thursday, December 17, 2009

18 Weeks


Today our sweet little baby is 18 weeks. Wow! I can't believe we are almost half way through this pregnancy. Crazy how time flies. Yesterday we had a doctors appointment and all was good. We got to hear the tiny little heart beat again- which is always incredible. Today we have our BIG ultrasound in which we should find out alot about our sweet little one. We are going to find out the sex of the baby, just not today. We are going to have our nurse write it down and put it in an envelope. We are going to wrap the envelope up in a package and open it Christmas morning. So- that will be our present to each other. Lantz thinks it is a girl, and I think it is a boy (but I hope that Lantz is right!).

Here is the "bump" at 18 weeks:


I also got my hair done a little differently yesterday. I really like it. It's a little shorter with more edgy layers and a small blond pick-a-boo. Thanks to all the ideas from my sister Heather and my great stylist Melanie it turned out perfect!

Tomorrow I'll post up our Christmas card/video for all of you! (Oh- and I still haven't forgotten about the rodeo pictures!)

Photobucket

Monday, December 14, 2009

Rescue Mission

Saturday morning was an eventful day. First off we went down to the Rescue Mission with some of the youth group and parents to wrap presents for those families that may not be able to afford Christmas presents. We were then able to have lunch with some of Lantz's friends from college who happened to be in town for the weekend. While we were at lunch, they invited us to join them for the championship round of the NFR (National Finals Rodeo) because they had extra tickets.

Here are a few pictures from the Mission, and hopefully tomorrow I'll get some up of the rodeo!

Photobucket

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Prayer Request

In the past you may remember reading a few blogs about our sweet friends from Africa named SP & Joy. We met them here in Vegas close to a year ago, and our hearts were instantly connected. They are the most wonderful people who have amazing hearts for the service of the Lord's Kingdom. They went back home to Uganda in August and we've since then kept in touch.

Joy has been expecting, and gave birth to their son Gabriel on Friday night. By the time he was born, he was distressed and had inhaled myconium into his lungs that affected his breathing. He was immediately put on oxygen support and closely monitored in the baby nursery.

He seemed to be improving and stabilizing until Sunday morning at about 3 am. His breathing had dropped and he had also gone into cardiac arrest. He relapsed about 7am and was then transferred to the Intensive care unit for close monitoring.

Unfortunately at around 9 am he had had another cardiac arrest and his heart stopped pumping. His blood pressure kept dropping until he passed on.

My heart is so heavy for my sweet friends right now. I have been in prayer all morning for them, and would ask that you go to your knees on behalf of them too. Please pray for strength, comfort, and peace for them during this unimaginable time. I wish so much that I knew what to say to comfort during this time, but I don't. My prayer is that the Holy Spirit will intervene on my behalf and offer to God the right words. I pray that they'll feel God's arms wrap around them during this time, and that their friends in Uganda will surround them with love and support.

Thank you in advance for your prayers on their behalf.

Photobucket

Thursday, December 10, 2009

17 Weeks


Today marks 17 weeks for our little one. I almost forgot to get this picture up today- I'm such a slacker. I feel like over the past week I've really grown- which I don't know if I like. If I'm already getting this big- when 9 months rolls around I don't want to be huge.
Photobucket

Monday, December 7, 2009

2 Books

Let me start off by saying that it is cloudy and rainy today. If you know anything about Las Vegas, then you know that this is totally not normal. It is always sunny, and we only get like 4 inches of rain per year.... so today is a rare one out here. It's a nice change- kinda. I'm not going to lie- if we ever do leave Las Vegas, the weather will be the number one thing I'd miss- I'm not a fan of rain.

On that note- a few weeks ago I finished a book called The Boy Who Dared and this past weekend I finished The Scarlet Thread. Both pretty good books- neither one will make the favorite list- but they were both enjoyable.

The Boy Who Dared, written by Susan Campbell Bartoletti, is a historical fiction book based around the Holocaust (of course- you know my passion for reads around this subject). It is about a young boy named Helmuth who is German and joins the Hitler Youth. It is interesting to read how a young boy in the Hitler Youth is "fashioned and trained." It takes a spin when Helmuth realizes that Hitler and the Nazis are bad and not good. He realizes that they lie to the German population and seek war not peace. Helmuth at the age of 14 sneaks an unauthorized radio and begins to listen to the BBC to find out the truth behind Hitler's war efforts. He soon starts to print pamphlets displaying the information that he learned and leaves them all around the city- on post boards, in public restrooms, display cases- anywhere. He is soon caught and tried for treason. He is sentenced to death by execution. There is a point where Helmuth screams things out in his trial to take all the blame so his 2 friends are spared their lives. Because of his outburst- his friends are not sentenced to death and their lives are spared.

I really am not a fan of historical fiction books based around the Holocaust simply because most of the times it's a watered down version of what people went through and it doesn't show the real extremity of it. However- this book was great, because it was based on a true story. (There are actual photos of Helmuth and his friends and family at the end of the book.) The only reason it is considered historical fiction is because the author had to guess at a few things here and there to try to fill in the blanks that others could not. The author interviewed Helmuth's brother, 2 friends, and teacher to determine his story- and she also did research into his trial. So I guess you'd say I liked this particular historical fiction book so much because it was more real and less fiction. (Oh- the first 2 or 3 chapters were a little confusing just because you are trying to keep up with all the characters, but after that it's a pretty easy read- it is a middle school level book FYI.)

The book I finished this past weekend was The Scarlet Thread by Francine Rivers. I picked this book up because I loved Francine River's book Redeeming Love so much- it is still my favorite book, and I continually recommend it to others. If you haven't read that one- it is a must! Anyways- back to The Scarlet Thread. This book was not what I expected after reading Redeeming Love... totally different. This book is about 2 characters who live a hundred years apart from one another. Sierra is a modern woman who is married with 2 children. She becomes bitter when her husband takes a job away from her home town and she is forced to move to LA. She takes her bitterness out on him, and he eventually wraps himself up in his work and later has an affair with another woman. While all of this takes place Sierra is reading a journal from one of her ancestors, Mary Kathryn, who traveled west in a covered wagon to California. This book shows the 2 journeys these women take through heartache and bitterness to find a love they never knew existed- the love of their Father in Heaven.

Parts of the book are depressing and sad, and yet when you finish the book you see how God uses our toughest times to work for good for Him. It is eventually a happy ending, and when you finish the book you'll let out a sigh of relief and satisfaction for the characters, but also for the joy of your own faith and the journey you've been on. Good book.

Happy reading!
Photobucket

Friday, December 4, 2009

Update

Thank you all for your prayers and sweet words on behalf of my grandmother. I just recently got off the phone with her and it seems that everything went good. She is now home recovering. Please continue prayers for her speedy recovery.

I'm not sure how I feel about last nights Survivor. Don't get me wrong- I think it's great that they kicked John off, but I don't think it was the smartest move. I think Jaison was exactly right when he said he didn't think they should do that because then it would make Shambo mad at them and they may loose her vote... so true. Not such a great move in my book. I think Mick and Jaison are onto Russell- even though I like him. The only people I don't like and would be sad and disappointed if they won would be: Shambo, Dave, and Monica.... other than that- I'd be happy for Russell, Jaison, Mick, Natalie or Brent. Just my 2 cents on that whole show.

Tonight we're going to go to a local place and get some really yummy chicken fried steak- which I'm super excited about! It's something I've been craving lately. Then, we're going to go see one of our youth group kids in his play. He is one of the leads in The Tempest.

Yesterday I started reading Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol with my students. It's always a fun unit because we read the play format and everybody has a chance to participate and then we do some fun hands on projects before we leave for winter break. So- that will take a few days to get through.

I plan on sleeping in tomorrow. I know I sure am tired and can totally use it- big surprise!
Photobucket

Thursday, December 3, 2009

16 Weeks

Here I am at 16 weeks growing nice and big:

Also, can I ask that you keep my grandmother in your prayers? She went into the emergency room last night at about 11:00 because she had pain in her stomach. It turns out that it is her gallbladder. She is going to have surgery tomorrow morning at 9:00. Please, please, please keep her in your prayers. Thank you so much for your prayers offered on her behalf! It's times like this that I hate living so far away.

Photobucket

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Not much...

It's always hard to get back into the swing of things after your spoiled with a 4 day weekend, but I'm slowly trying to get my mind wrapped back around work. Lantz did some smoking this past weekend- which is pure amazingness in my book. (Best wedding gift I ever got him was that smoker- it has brought us both so much joy and happy tummies! Great gift for a guy if your looking for something nice for the holidays.) He smoked a 12 pound brisket, 2 whole chickens, and some pork loin.... yummy! We had a few people over to share, but we've got a ton of leftovers which is great! We have really been eating like kings the past few days.

We also put our Christmas tree up..... so yeah. No much else has been happening. Looking forward to Survivor on Thursday. I hope Russel doesn't get himself kicked out. Oh, tomorrow is 16 weeks, so I should have a photo up sometime tomorrow. I know my belly isn't that big yet, but it's crazy how fast stuff starts to not fit- and my lower back has already been bothering me.
Photobucket

Monday, November 30, 2009

The Blind Side

Lantz and I don't go to the movies very often. Maybe once a year. It seems crazy to say that, because I remember a time in my life when I would go to the movies every weekend- sometimes twice a weekend. But.... it is just so expensive- it's $9.50 a person.... $21 for both of us. We'd normally rather wait until it comes out on DVD and rent it from Redbox for $1, but this past weekend was an exception. We saw the preview for The Blind Side and knew that we really wanted to see it, so we went to a matinee which was still $7 a person mind you.

Anyways- it was a great movie! I cannot say enough positive things about this movie..... it was so stinking good! And it was a true story which made it even better- I'm a real sucker for true stories. It had some amazing spiritual implications that really inspired Lantz and I into some deep conversations. As much as I want to tell you about this movie, I think it's best you just watch the preview on your own so you'll be convinced that you need to see it.


My prayer after watching this movie is that when presented with opportunities I will see the good that God wants me to do, and that I will have the courage to do it.

"Then the King will say to those on his right, 'Come you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison, and you came to visit me...... I tell you the truth, whatever you did for the least of these, you did for me.'" ~ Matthew 25: 34-36, 45

"Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world." ~ James 1:27

"Do not forget to entertain strangers, for by so doing some people have entertained angels without knowing it..... And do not forget to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices God is pleased." ~ Hebrews 13: 2, 16
Photobucket

Thursday, November 26, 2009

15 Weeks

Happy Thanksgiving my sweet little baby! Keep on growing- I know my belly will after I'm done eating today! Hope you enjoy all the good eats too!

Photobucket

Happy Thanksgiving!

I hope that everyone has a great Thanksgiving today and that you get to spend it with people that you care about! Unfortunately we won't get to spend this holiday with family, but we'll be spending it with some great friends of ours here in Vegas. On this day I am especially thankful for:

Jesus. Who gave up everything for me so that I can be in Heaven one day. Without Him I am nothing. He is my joy, my hope, and my reason for all things.

Lantz. The love of my life, my best friend, my partner in all things, my encourager.

Our baby. Our sweet little one who continues to grow and whom God continues to knit together. We can't wait to meet you.

Our family. We have the most incredible family ever. We truly are blessed to have an extended family who we love and adore. We are so thankful for the Christian love that binds us together and the love that overflows from HIM into our lives.

Our friends. Both near and far. Thank you for touching our lives and loving us.

I hope that everyone has a great Thanksgiving and that you get to eat lots of turkey- or if you're like me- lots of ham. (I've never been much of a turkey girl!)
Photobucket

Monday, November 23, 2009

Not much...

Not much going on here.... except that I'm super excited I only have a 3 day week! Yes! I forgot to mention that Friday night when we played Putt-Putt with the middle school kids in the youth group- I won!!!! I never, ever, ever have beaten Lantz at Putt-Putt, but I did this past weekend! Yeah me! My score was a 53 for 18 holes- not bad if I do say so myself.

I pretty much slept all weekend long I felt like- even though I did do some stuff. I went to the YMCA and walked 3 & 1/2 miles on the treadmill- so that was good. Also, Sunday night we had an M&M night. M&M is Movie & Ministry with the youth group. One of the students hosts it at their house, and they pick a movie to show and create an in depth Bible study around the movie (and we eat M&Ms). It was so much fun! We watched Napolean Dynamite- which I had never seen before- it was so stupid- but so funny. I know what you're thinking- "What spiritual messages are in that movie?" But there were so many! The student that hosted it did an outstanding job of providing relevant conversation and connecting the Bible, real life, and the movie all together. It was neat.

Tomorrow we are having a Thanksgiving Celebration in the Teacher's Lounge, and we're each supposed to bring a dish to share. I'm going to bring deviled eggs... yummy! So yeah... I've got to head down stairs and get on top of that now. Hope you had a great Monday!
Photobucket

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Belly Band

Today after going to the YMCA and walking 3 & 1/2 miles my sweet husband surprised me with a package that came in the mail for me. He knows the frustration I've been dealing with as far as my clothes fitting, and he ordered me two Belly Bands! I have a white one and a black one, and this will allow me to wear some of my pre-pregnancy clothing a little longer! How great! Don't I just have the sweetest husband ever?
Photobucket

Friday, November 20, 2009

Doctor Yesterday

Yesterday's doctor's appointment went great. We didn't get a sonogram, but got to hear the heart beat and all is well. The doctor said that everything looked and sounded great! She did however want me to go to get the flu shot and the N1H1 shot.... so that's what I got to do this afternoon. And let me tell you that that stinking swine flue shot hurt like crazy... it still feels like my arm is on fire. Hopefully it'll keep baby and me safe and healthy though. Continue to pray for us.

This morning for school the Reading Department had to host the monthly breakfast. It went over great! I made 2 pans of a yummy breakfast casserole that got some awesome reviews from my fellow co-workers. Yeah!

Tonight we have a Middle School Night out with Hamburgers and Putt- Putt, so that should be fun. I think I'm going to get Lantz to take me to Panera Bread instead though for some potato soup in a bread bowl- that just sounds better to me than a hamburger tonight. Have a great weekend!
Photobucket

Thursday, November 19, 2009

14 Weeks


Today I'm officially 14 weeks along in my pregnancy.... and my bump is definitely growing. It's crazy. I didn't think I'd already be showing this much- but of course right now I just look like I over ate at Thanksgiving rather than I'm pregnant- but we all know the truth. I guess that means I'm going to be huge at 8 months- if I already am showing this much.

I feel good about 14. It was my basketball number all through high school, so I'm kinda partial to it. Today we also have a doctor's appointment after school. Please keep us in your prayers. We are prayerful that everything is going the way it is supposed to and that our little one is safe and healthy.
Photobucket

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Survivor

I am sad that I have not been so on top of my Survivor watching this season. I really do love the competition in this game and the exotic locations. We've just been so busy on Thursday nights that we really haven't had the chance. Well, last week we sat down and decided that we'd play catch up on the episodes through the online video viewing. Best idea ever. All tv shows should be online for those of us who do not have tivo, or dvr, or whatever it's called. So, last night we got all caught up- which mean this Thursday (if nothing comes up) we can actually sit and watch it at its normally programed time.

So... who am I into this season you ask? My favorite players are Russell and Natalie. I know that Russell seems like a jerk, but he is a really good player and makes the show way more entertaining. Besides, who in the world finds 2 hidden immunity idols without any clues? And I'm pretty sure based on previews for this week that he finds another one. Natalie just seems like a sweetheart. She reminds me of Kellie Pickler- so I like that. I am rooting for one of those two to win. I know that the old Foa Foa tribe is down in numbers, but I think the four left will be able to pull out a scheme to keep themselves around longer.
Photobucket

Monday, November 16, 2009

Lately...

Lately I've been really tired.

Lately I've not wanted to go to work. I mean, I love my job- but I'm kinda over it. There are other things I'd rather do. I love my kids and the people I work with, but I'm not motivated to do anything lately.

Lately... as in this morning I was queesy. I wouldn't call it full blown morning sickness, but I was nauseous from like 6:30 to 10:00 today. It's the only day that I've felt sick, so I'll take it- hopefully not anymore though.

Lately Cooper has been stupid. I think he knows that I am pregnant and that things are going to change for him, but he's not sure how- so he's acting out. He's been getting into the trash, or ripping things up that are laying on the counter. So not like Cooper. He is like the best, most well-behaved dog ever- but lately he's been in a funk. I totally think he knows, and he doesn't know what to do about it- so he's acting out in whatever way he knows how at this point. Stupid dog. I hope he knocks it off... I'm tired of cleaning up after him when I get home.

Lately I've been thinking about a nursery. I've got no ideas. None. Zilch. Whether it's a boy or girl- I've got nothing. I've tried looking online for ideas and dreaming up stuff in my head, but there is nothing that I can think of that will be perfect. Agh. Hopefully I'll figure that out before the little one comes in May.

Lately I haven't felt much like cooking.

Lately I've been thinking about different places I'd like to travel. Probably not a likely thing to happen since we just got back from Europe and we're having a baby soon.

Lately I've really been missing our family. Sometimes I truly HATE living so far away, and wish I could just "drop by" to say hi to them or give them a hug and let them know how crazy I am about all of them. I don't like feeling like we're on an island out here- and I wish we could be close so they could share this whole pregnancy thing with us more. I wish I could snuggle on the couch with them and have funny conversations, I wish I could eat with them, I wish I could shop with them, I wish I could just 'be' with them. If yall are reading- "I love you, and I wish we were closer. I think about you all the time and imagine hugs and laughs. I pray for your safety, health, happiness, and spiritual growth. Again... yall will never know how much I love and miss you and wish I could be with you."
Photobucket

Saturday, November 14, 2009

BOB Stroller

So, Lantz and I think we want to get a BOB stroller for our baby. We are not sure, but we think that's something we'd like. The problem with that is that they are like $350. Well, that's way too much money for us. But, we had a great idea. We are members at REI, and twice a year they do a huge garage sale on items which have been brought back to the store- alot of which is mostly still new looking. We went to one a few weeks ago and were too late, and the only BOB stroller that was there was taken. It went for $160. Well, today there was another garage sale at a different location. Lantz got up there 3 hours before the store opened to wait in line. He was one of the first 100 people to get to go into the sale section. There were 3 BOB strollers there, and some woman got all 3!!! Can you stand it! Lantz was like, "Can I have one of those... I don't care which one." She said no, because she needed all 3. Whatever. You know she is just going to resale them on Craig's list or Ebay for double what she paid. Lantz said they were all like only $100. Doesn't that stink? Mean lady.

So yeah. We were bummed, cause when Lantz saw that there were 3 we were sure we'd get at least one of them. But no. Oh well. Maybe it's a sign that we don't really need one. Lantz said he's going to camp out at the next REI garage sale so he can be first in line in case there is another stroller. We'll see. The next sale probably won't be until right before we have the baby, and we may have decided against it by that point in time.

Story of the day. Mean lady.... nobody has a use for 3 strollers.
Photobucket

Thursday, November 12, 2009

13 Weeks

Above is my 13 week small "belly bump." (Side note- I love this shirt- it is actually all flowy, but I tightened it up on the side for the picture. My sister gave this shirt to me this summer when she was living out here and working for Ed Hardy. She got me this one, because there were not skulls all over it, and it was bright and cheerful. She also picked this one because it flowed out, and she said she got it so that when I got pregnant I could still wear it. So... technically it's my first "pregnancy" top- the first one bought with the intentionality of being worn with a bigger tummy. Thanks Heather!)

Our precious little one will be getting their vocal cords this week, and their intestines which have been growing in the umbilical cord will now start to make their way into the body. So cool. Oh- we're up to the size of a peach- about 3 inches.

Photobucket

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Day Off

Today I enjoyed a great day off! Thank you to all our armed forces- past and present!

I didn't do much today. I slept in, and then walked about 2 and 1/2 miles on the treadmill at the YMCA. I went to Ross and bought a few cute maternity pieces and some cute clothes that weren't labeled "maternity," but I think will stand the test of time through this pregnancy. I took a nap, and then watched 2 episodes of Survivor online. I have only watched the first episode on TV, and now I've watched 4 online. I'm trying to get caught back up to where I can start watching again with the TV.

I also went with Lantz to Kohl's- they were having a big sale- so he could buy these house slippers that he wanted that he saw the other day. Then we went to church this evening.

It's about to get cold on Friday. I'm not sure if that's a good thing or a bad thing. I don't really like the cold, but I'm not a huge fan of this limbo weather we've been having- freezing in the morning and at night and then hot in the day-- to challenging to decide what to wear for the day.

So... not much going on around here..... I'll hopefully have 13 week pictures up tomorrow for you!
Photobucket

Monday, November 9, 2009

A Million Miles in a Thousand Years

First of all I'll start off with an apology. I didn't mean to not blog all weekend long. It just happened. I know you've been in suspense of what has been going on over here in Las Vegas with the Howards. Lantz and I went to a marriage conference Friday night and all day Saturday- so that pretty much ate up the weekend. It was good to be together and focus on our marriage, but if I'm being honest, it was a terrible conference. The structure and information just really wasn't all that great. Oh- my sister signed up for a Spring Break Campaign- which I think is great! Oh... and some not so great news is that I'm up to 7 pounds of weight gain. Yuck- but hopefully my baby is nice and healthy and getting all the nutrients he/she needs!

Anyways, remember Lantz and I traded books? I asked him to read Redeeming Love and he asked me to read A Million Miles in a Thousand Years. Although I finished Lantz's book Friday, I'm afraid it'll take Lantz a little longer to get through my book. So... A Million Miles in a Thousand Years was written by Donald Miller- the same guy that wrote Blue Like Jazz (you may have read it because it's pretty popular- I didn't read it- so I can't compare the two). Even though it's not a book I would have picked up to read myself- I have to admit it was a pretty good book and I could see how people would really enjoy it... actually I enjoyed it.

It is kind of a personal book about Donald Miller and how he felt kinda "stuck" in life. Some people came to him to make a movie about his book Blue Like Jazz, but they wanted to change some stuff to make it a better "story." Well- this book goes on to describe how Donald Miller learns what makes a good story and how he learns to actually live a better story with his own life. It draws some spiritual implications throughout the book, but I wouldn't really call it religious. It's also a pretty quick read once you get past the first 4 chapters.

This book will probably inspire you to DO something. It encourages you to live a better story with your life and to not take the day for granted. Lantz loved this book so much that he read it twice. He also recommended it to a Senior in our youth group who also loved it and read it twice. Because of this book this Senior who hasn't really worked out much ever- decided that he was going to start running. He started out just walking,then walking & jogging, now running. Then he decided he was going to do a 5K, but instead of doing a 5K he decided he wanted to do a 10K.. and I think he's now training for a half marathon in January. Yesterday he ran 3.3 miles to our house, did ab ripper X from P90X, and then rode Lantz's bike back to his house, and this morning, Lantz and him met for an intense work out at a park. Isn't that great? This book inspired him to do something in his life that he wasn't doing before. (No- the book is not about working out- it's just what this young man felt inspired to do after reading it.)

So- believe it or not- I'm glad that Lantz recommended this book to me. Although it's more of a "self-help" book- it reads as a narrative which was able to hold my attention. I laughed and I cried in it, and I like books that evoke emotion in me. Read it- you may be inspired to do more with your life!
Photobucket

Thursday, November 5, 2009

12 Weeks Today

Here I am at 12 weeks. I can't believe I'm almost through my first trimester! Crazy how time flies.

The next one may be better, cause the shirt above kinda poofs out on its own. The next one is more realistic.

Photobucket

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

11 & 1/2 Week Ultrasound

Father God, I praise your name for our precious little one. Thank you so much for the peace and reassurance that you provided in today's ultrasound. I'm so thankful for the amazing little baby that you are continuing to form in my womb. What an amazing blessing to see our little one wiggling around today and to see their sweet profile, arms, hands, feet, legs, and their sweet little nose. Thank you for the assurance of a strong solid heart beat. I pray that you continue to watch over our little one and strengthen them that they may be a healthy baby in May. Father continue to provide Lantz and I peace that you are taking care of our small one and taking time to know everything about them. I praise your name again for allowing us to experience this incredible creation journey. You truly are breath-taking and it's awesome to know you and your power in new ways. Amen.

Photobucket

Monday, November 2, 2009

Cravings...

I don't feel I've had any over the top pregnancy cravings. I mean I've had a few cravings here and there, but nothing consistent. Here are a few of the things that I have craved so far in my 11 weeks:

fried pickles
loaded french fries (onion, cheese, bacon, ranch)
soup
chicken spaghetti
chinese food

See, nothing all that crazy. And everything was really random- a few I had a couple of times, but none more than twice. Kinda random I know. What were some of your weird cravings?

Anyways, tomorrow we have another doctor's appointment. Please keep our little one in your prayers.
Photobucket

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Redeeming Love


Okay.... I loved Twilight, but I can honestly say that I enjoyed Redeeming Love 10 times more. I'm a sucker for a good, sweet, love story- and this one gave me just that. Not only did I get the man & woman love story, but I got the most amazing love story of all time- God's love story for us. A.M.A.Z.I.N.G. I could not put this book down. I started it Monday, and finished it up last night, Friday night. I probably would have finished it quicker if I didn't have to work and if i wasn't so tired with my pregnancy. I have to admit that I am sad that it's over.

So, for those of you that have never read it- it is a modern day telling of the book of Hosea in the Bible. It takes place during the California gold rush. Angel is a young girl who lives in the life of prostitution- basically the only thing she's ever known. Michael Hosea is a young, pure man of God who is a farmer. God speaks to Michael to go and marry Angel. As Michael tries to show Angel a love she has never known she eventually discovers a love she has never dreamed possible and a eternal love unimaginable to her.

If you enjoy reading at all, or even tolerate it- then this is a MUST read.

Lantz and I are supposed to trade books. He is going to attempt Redeeming Love and I am going to attempt A Million Miles in a Thousand Years.

After I finish Lantz's book, I plan on reading another of Francine Rivers books- The Scarlet Thread.
Photobucket