Monday, January 31, 2011

Park Play

As today starts the decent into cooler weather than what we've been experiencing, I thought I'd share a few pictures from our sunny days!  The past few days here have been in the upper 60s & lower 70s... it has been crazy beautiful Texas weather.  So a few days ago, in honor of the warm weather, we decided to walk down to our park & let Kennedie play & enjoy the sunshine.  Here are a few (or more than a few) photos from the afternoon. 












Friday, January 28, 2011

Revisited....

A found these pictures in iphoto from a month ago.  I forgot to post them apparently.  These are so neat.  My mother-in-law brought over a few pieces of clothing that she wore when she was a baby.  The dress she wore, Lantz's sister wore, Mikalie (our niece) wore, & now we can say that Kennedie wore it.  They all have pictures in it.  So cute:

Binky (Lantz's mom) also brought over the sweater & hat that she & her two brothers were all brought home from the hospital in.  Good thing Kennedie is so small that they still fit her (kind of) so we could get a picture or two:

The Beginning Reader's Bible: A Book Review


I was so excited when The Beginning Reader's Bible showed up at the house yesterday.  It is a really cool starter Bible for little ones, actually it is more like a Bible story book rather than a Bible.  It is probably best for ages 2- 10.  The cover is a really great hard cover, & it is just a foreshadowing of all the incredible art work throughout the book.  All the pages are full color, bright, & cheerful!  I think that the illustrations in this book sets it apart from all other beginning Bibles that I've seen.  The pictures are PERFECT for little ones, & it helps bring the Bible stories to life!  The illustrator, Marijke ten Cate, really did a phenomenal job!

This Bible is set up with 13 stories from the Old Testament, 13 stories from the New Testament, & then 12 resources in the back.  One needs to be aware that this is not the entire Bible, but only a small collection of Bible stories.  The text for this Bible is taken from the International Children's Bible, so the translation is excellent for a child's comprehension.  There is a red ribbon book marker attached to the Bible also so it's easy to find where you left off.

The cool thing about this Bible is that on almost every page along with the Bible story there is a box with something extra.  There are 3 different things that appear in the boxes throughout the Bible.  One is "Remember God's Word," in which it gives memory verses for children to memorize.  Another box theme is "Pray God's Word."  In this box there are different verses taken from Psalms that kids can read & pray.  The last box theme is " Do God's Word," which is where it challenges children to put God's words into action.  This particular box is my favorite throughout cause there are really great applications for children that apply to their lives.  For example after the story of Joseph in the "Do God's Word" box it explains that he could have been very mean to his brothers for how they treated him, but he chose to be kind & forgive them.  It challenges children to also be kind to others & when someone hurts your feelings instead of saying something mean try to say something nice about that person.  Other cool applications include: drawing, looking at the stars, learning the phrase "God loves you" in 6 different languages, & lots of other cool things.

In the back there are a couple of cool references like The Ten Commandments, selected verses from Proverbs, the 12 apostles listed, the 12 tribes of Israel listed, songs, & several other things.  There is also a chart where  a child can record the dates that they read the stories from this Bible, & a chart where they can record the date that the memorized the verses from the "Remember God's Word" boxes.

As much as I enjoyed this children's Bible there is one thing that will prevent me from recommending it.  The last page is a prayer that the publisher has provided that is titled "Prayer of Salvation" for a child to say.  After reading & studying scripture over & over, I cannot find this prayer anywhere in the Bible.  As I study scripture I find many different passages referencing salvation: scriptures about believing, repenting, confessing, obeying God's teachings, being baptized, & living in Christ, but I don't find any scripture leading me to pray a certain prayer for salvation.  I don't feel I can recommend this book based on the last page in this children's Bible.  I feel this page is very misleading, & it is the only thing I do not like about this Bible.


(Book provided by booksneeze.  Thanks booksneeze!)

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Spaghetti Squash

If you are looking for an alternate to carbs then you may have found a solution.   Although I'm HUGE into using whole wheat pasta for everything- this is a nice change from some heavy carbs.  This spaghetti squash cooks up to looking like noodles.  But, don't go in to get an exact noodle texture or flavor.  It can be a little crunchy-ish & a little sweet- er.  But- if you go in knowing that it will not taste just like noodles then it will be excellent for you.  I like to prepare it as to eat "spaghetti," & if we are feeling extra healthy around here then we use ground turkey in our sauce instead of ground beef.

Spaghetti Squash

Ingredients:

One Spaghetti Squash
1 lb of ground beef/ or ground turkey
1 jar of spaghetti sauce

Directions:

Poke holes into the spaghetti squash:

Put it into the microwave for 10-12 minutes.  While you are microwaving your spaghetti squash just brown your beef/turkey & drain any fat.  Add your spaghetti sauce & heat over low heat. Let your squash cool for a few minutes, & then cut it in half.  Clean the pumpkin- like seeds & membranes out.  Put half side down into a dish with a small amount of water.

Add saran wrap to the top to create a steaming effect.  Put it back in the microwave for about 4- 5 minutes.  Pull saran wrap off & carefully (it's hot) lift spaghetti squash to pull apart. Now you are just going to get a fork & pull out all the "noodles."  You are basically just scraping out the inside.


Put some "noodles" on a plate & top with your spaghetti sauce.  It is great served with a veggie like grilled asparagus..... and knowing how much I love carbs I didn't skip them.... I added a whole wheat roll.

Yummy.  Healthy & delicious.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Saturday, January 22, 2011

8 Months



Wow!  Am I really writing this post right now?  I really can't believe that I have an 8 month old daughter.  You really don't know how fast time flies until you have a baby.  This month as brought lots of fun milestones.  It seems like she is learning something new everyday.

My sweet little Kennedie:

- You now know how to crawl!  That's right- you are a moving little girl.  It's funny though, cause even though you know how to crawl we still have to tempt you with something across the room before you will start moving.  Most of the time if you want us you will just sit & cry & look at us 'til we come get you- it's like you haven't figured out that you can actually move to us.  Love it.
- Besides crawling you LOVE to pull up on anything, & you really like it when we help you walk.  I almost think you'll start walking soon because you enjoy it so much.
- You are so much more attached to me.  You don't want me to leave your sight.  Most of the time you don't even want to play with your toys unless I am playing with you.  You just seem to want to be in my arms or your Daddy's arms.
- You learned to wave this month.  I don't think you fully understand the purpose, but you just wiggle your little hand and move it all around at people all the time. Adorable.
- Recently you have discovered that your finger fits perfectly into your nose, & you think it's so funny to stick it up there.
- You are still wearing 3-6 month clothing, although lately it seems you may be putting on a little bit more weight.
- You are now only breastfeeding 4 times a day.
- You are expanding your horizons on the solid food frontier.  I talked to your doctor about how picky you were with baby food, & she suggested start giving you what we were eating (just throw it all in the blender).  Well- now you eat almost EVERYTHING!  As long as Mommy & Daddy are eating it- then you want it to.  So you now seem to be such a BIG eater.  You really like smoked turkey lunch meat.
- You have figured out how your hands work.  You can now put Puffs & green beans, & other foods into your mouth all on your own.  You can also drink your sippy cup (sometimes on your own, but most of the time we have to help you).
-Your hair seems to be growing really fast now, & your eyes are still blue.
- This month you also got your first two teeth!  They are your bottom middle ones.
- On a different note, you are not napping very good lately.  It seems like your morning nap you do pretty good sleeping- about 1 hour & 15 minutes to 1 hour & 30 minutes.  Your afternoon naps are a completely different story.  It seems like you sleep 30-50 minutes & then you wake up screaming your head off.  I try to calm you down & get you back to sleep, but you typically will have nothing to do with that.  I hope that you will get better at your afternoon naps, because I really think that you still need to take one.  When you do happen to get a longer afternoon nap in- it seems you are less fussy & cranky in the evening.
- My most favorite thing that you have learned this month is how to give kisses!  You just learned it a few days ago.  This is the sweetest thing that you do.... it just melts my heart. We will ask if you can give us kisses & then we pucker up, & then you move your open little mouth right to ours.... PRICELESS. Here is a picture of the sweetness:


My precious baby girl.... Words can't begin to express my deep love for you.  Every day you seem to melt my heart in new ways.  When you smile & giggle, I can't help but to smile too.  You allow me to experience God's love in a whole new way.  You are so much fun & so lovable.  I'm so thankful to your Daddy for being such a good man & working so hard so that I can stay home with you.  We are two very lucky girls.  I love you so much!


Here are a few more pictures from the last week: 












Wednesday, January 19, 2011

One Hand, Two Hands: A Book Review


I was super excited to get One Hand, Two Hands, by Max Lucado in the mail because Max is one of my favorite children's books authors.  I love the imagery & foreshadowing of God's stories that he tends to bring out in his books.  I was however a little disappointed with this particular book by Max.

The story seemed to be targeted to very young children or babies- maybe 9 months - 4 years of age, which I thought would be great for Kennedie except that it is a hard cover book with paper pages.  It does not have very much writing on each page, so I think it lends itself to being a perfect board book where babies or children can interact more with it since its primary point is what we can DO with our hands.  Kennedie wants to turn the pages, as do most kids, & the young ones just can't handle the paper pages very well. The art work is really cute & colorful in the book- I thought that the illustrator, Gaby Hansen, did a great job.  

With that being said, the story itself is cute, but not great.  It does rhyme which is always great and catchy for a children's book.  It is not a "typical" Max Lucado book though.  There is not really a story- just suggestions on how to use your hands.  It just seems to lists things that kids can do to help with their hands: petting the dog, combing your hair, pick flowers, button your shirt, wipe tears, wash dishes, etc... At the end there is a small Biblical lesson that you can fold your hands to pray: "One hand, two hands, five fingers, ten... God thanks for my hands.  Please use them again."  The last page summarizes how you can have helping hands, kind hands, & loving hands.

Overall, it is a good book.  Not a great book, just a good book.  There are a few things that would have made it better.  I think it should have been published as a board book since it was not a lengthy "story."  It could have suggested more service things that children could do for others.  It also would have been cool to have had some way to interact with your hands while reading the books to engage the kids more.
I would recommend other Max Lucado childrens books over this one- it's probably my least favorite one of his that I've read.  

(This book was sent to me free courtesy of booksneeze.com.  Thanks booksneeze!)

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Just a phase, or just my baby?

So.... Kennedie cries any time I sit her down for just a minute.  If I have to go to the bathroom, or try to cook dinner, or make the bed..... anything.  If it does not involve me holding her or sitting on the floor to play with her she screams bloody murder..... not just a nice whimper- balling her head off- crazy.  I think she most definitely has an attachment to me, which I think is normal to some degree, but I can not do anything while she is awake.

Is this a normal baby thing?  A phase? Or just my baby?

Thoughts or suggestions?

Monday, January 17, 2011

Snow Day

A week ago yesterday we were blessed by 5 inches of snow.  It was so fun to experience God's creation with our sweet daughter.  It was so cold, but we bundled our little Miss Kennedie up and let her play outside for a little while.  It was neat to watch her experience God's masterpiece last Sunday.  She wasn't so sure about it, even when Dad tried to show her how to make snowballs.  And of course she had to test it out & put some in her mouth!  Here are a few pictures (or alot- cause who can pick a few?) of our short time outside:











Hopefully we'll get some more snow this season!

Thursday, January 13, 2011

2 Weeks of Kennedie

Here are several pictures of Kennedie from the last few weeks that I've been meaning to share!

Pictures from bath time a few weeks ago.  She is now a big girl & taking a bath without the bath chair!



Dad & Kennedie having fun-- she was just trying on his hat to see if it fit!



Kennedie wearing her super cute pink camo outfit that her Cowboy (my dad) gave her for Christmas.


(Umm.... yes, we do have a little girl on the crawl now!!! She started a few days ago!!)


Just playing with her toys on a pajama day!!

"Let me tell you all about it mom."


"Huh?"

Note about next pictures: I did not ask Cooper to sit by Kennedie. He plopped himself right down beside her.  So cute.  He is so good with her.  We could not ask for a better dog while having a kid.



Snow day pictures coming soon!!