Friday, July 30, 2010

Harriet at Three Weeks

The Many Faces of Harriet Alice

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Random Thursday Thoughts

Only two more nights left of the work week.  Hooray!  It all just seems to be creeping by, much to my consternation.  I keep hoping that I'll get somewhat accustomed to this schedule, even if I don't care for it.  That has yet to happen, but can keep hoping, right?  (The biggest problem is that I feel horribly guilty for not liking the situation because so many wives have husbands who are gone for long periods of time or have jerk husbands who don't want to be home and that isn't my situation at all.  But beating myself up about how I should be feeling doesn't help.  Blarggie, blarggie.)  My latest greatest idea is to have my Bible next to the bed and to just start reading when the mental gerbil wheel picks up speed.

The fun news: not only will we be enjoying the various diversions of the county fair next week, but Auntie Jen will be arriving for a several-day visit.

I'm reading Knowing God in the mornings.  The chapters are relatively short, which is great when I have a cat-nappy baby, but they certainly are not lacking in weighty, convicting thoughts.  It's nice to read something weighty and convicting and well-written when there are so many fluffy books full of spiritual pat answers out there.  Sometimes I just want to scream, "Let's be more grubby and real and less 'spiritual,' please!"  Two paragraphs jumped out at me this morning which are much too long to re-type but are well worth the read.  In summary, the first paragraph said that we can know a great deal about God but lack knowledge of Him, primarily through our devotion to theological pursuits and the resulting accolades we might receive from fellow believers.  The second paragraph detailed how often we can know about godliness without having the knowledge of God thanks to the quantity of spiritual "helps" available.  As Packer says, all of this is well and good, but what if I become so dependent on my theological knowledge or my "how-to-be-a-good-Christian" books that my knowledge of God through His word takes a back seat?  What if my day-to-day Christian walk is based solely on knowledge about God that I've stored up from past ministry and Bible school experiences?
The question is not whether we are good at theology, or 'balanced' (horrible, self-conscious word!) in our approach to problems of Christian living; the question is, can we say, simply, honestly, not because we feel that as evangelicals we ought to, but because it is a plain matter of fact, that we have known God, and that because we have known God the unpleasantness we have had, or the pleasantness we have not had, through being Christians does not matter to us?
 This leads to another mental bunny trail that I went down last night.  When I was in CEF or at Cornerstone, it seemed so easy and adventuresome to just pick up and go whenever and wherever God said to go.  I'm supposed to go be a missionary in Ireland?  Okedoke.  I'll do whatever it takes.  (Call me crazy, but there were seasons when martyrdom on the mission field [though probably not in Ireland] definitely had its appeal.)  Now Steve and I are exploring a new type of ministry opportunity to do post-seminary that honestly has never crossed my mind.  And the newness of it all honestly freaks me out.  Perhaps it's because I am getting more and more settled into the married/family way with all of its daily practicalities and I feel like clinging to it.  Anything "out there" feels too scary.  Or maybe it's because God feels so small right now...because my knowledge of Him - and the energy, boldness, and contentment that results - is so limited.  But His grace hasn't failed me yet.

All righty, I think I've had my daily allotment of navel-staring time.  It's time to go take a walk or go jump on the sleeping husband or something.

Bunco is tonight and I'm taking Harriet along for the party.  Whoop, whoop!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Harriet at Two Weeks (Pictures)

Having reached the ripe old age of two weeks and three days, Harriet Alice Rodgers has developed some preferences in her life.  If you should happen to visit her, this is what you would discover.

Harriet likes:

  • Sleeping during the day.  While this perpetual cat napping does send the nighttime routine for a bit of a loop, having moments during the day for Mommy to do other things is helpful.  Harriet usually wakes up at 7am, plays around for a while, and then takes a solid nap from 11am-2pm.  Hooray for some semblance of a routine!

  • Her car seat.  I was nervous about the whole riding in the car thing, especially since we drive an hour to church each week.  But she really seems to enjoy being in her car seat and usually drifts off to sleep once we start driving.  Steve and I ventured out on a date night the other evening, and Harriet slept during the 45 minute drive, the hour-long meal, and for 30 minutes of the ride home.  
  • Her Auntie Clara.  She actually smiled for reals at Clara on Sunday.  So not fair.  Actually, Harriet enjoys all of her crazy relatives (and I enjoy it when Grandmom comes over to brisk her up and brisk her about during the Afternoon/Evening Crankies [see below]).
  • Taking walks.  Maybe it has to do with the whole car seat thing, but Harriet really enjoys our jaunts out in the stroller, too.  On Saturday I needed something at a store a few blocks away, so I loaded her up in the stroller and away we went...until a big scary dog jumped out at us, barked violently and followed us up the sidewalk.  I didn't really feel like having my leg mauled off while I was pushing a stroller, so Steve nicely came and picked us up.  
  • Eating.  I was reading an article about knowing what a baby needs by the variances in their grunts and cries.  Harriet just makes the I Need to Eat noise.
  • Climbing up the Daddy Mountain.  She has really strong legs (could have told you that based on her last few weeks in the womb) and will push up Steve's body when she is laying on his stomach.  It's pretty silly, but her determination is admirable.
Harriet does not like:
  • Baths.  This conclusion is based on her response to her first bath, which occurred yesterday afternoon. She was screaming bloody murder.  Steve was calmly and speedily administering the shampoo.  I was not looking.  And that is why we have no photographic evidence of the event.
  • The afternoon and evening.  She turns into Little Miss Cranky Pants until exhaustion or bedtime hits.  This is rough because we parents are usually tired and cranky whenever this time of day rolls around, so we make for a pretty tense threesome.  Grandmom had the ingenuity to flop Little Miss Cranky Pants over on her tummy on the Bobby pillow and firmly pat her behind.  This calmed things down considerably.
  • Having to wait.  Especially for her snacks.
  • Sleeping in her co-sleeper.  Thankfully, she is fine sleeping next to me at night, and I'm used to it as well, so this hasn't been too much of a struggle.  I feel bad for having a $50 co-sleeper taking up space in the closet, though.
  • Having anything on her legs or feet.  Most babies get a kick out of being all nicely swaddled up.  Harriet gets a kick out of kicking everything off.  This includes her socks and pants.  (Yes, I woke up one morning to discover that her pants were in another area of the bed.  I wonder how long it took for her to work those off during the night.)  She will definitely sleep more soundly with less stuff on her body.  (I am still wondering if she is my child....)
Harriet continues to get chubbier in the tummy-tum-tum.  You still can't see her eyebrows or eyelashes, even though her hair is dark.  Her eyes are a stormy blue, much to my delight.

She really is the Best Baby.

Thursday, July 22, 2010


For a few glorious days after Harriet's birth, we were perfectly content.  We weren't worried about the house, or other peoples' expectations, or going to seminary, or how dumb this town can be, or anything.  It was just us all holed up with nothing to think about but each other.

Now that things are settling back into the reality of work/baby care routines, that temporary contentment seems like it is slipping away.  At least from me.  

I look around me: if only the house were more clean, if only the dog didn't stink, if only the yard were mowed.  Harriet squeaks on my lap: if only she were older and had more of a playtime, if only there could be perfect equality in baby care responsibilities.  I ponder what will happen next: if only Steve had a day-shift, if only he could be doing something that he really enjoyed, if only we weren't so tired and could meet each other's needs more fully.

Then the guilt trip begins.  I'm not grateful for and satisfied in what I have now...will it make any difference if things change?  Won't there be cause for discontent and grumbling no matter what state I'm in?  It's more than just altered circumstance that I require.  It's a changed heart and no matter how much I strive and ache to change it, the bottom line is that I can't do it myself.

My Bible is staring at me from the coffee table.  Philippians 4:11-13 comes to mind:
Not that I am speaking of being in need, for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content. I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound.  In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need.  I can do all things through him who strengthens me.

I have read this passage a billion times.  But this time what sticks out is the word "learned."  Paul learned how to be content in all circumstances.  This wasn't some magical POOF!  Contentment!  It was a part of his sanctification by grace.  He learned contentment as he trusted in the One who strengthened him in all things.

Perhaps God is teaching me contentment by revealing my appalling discontent.  He is gently reminding me that I can do all things through Him who strengthens me: things like feeding a baby all day, being unable to go when I want to go, doing laundry and making the bed, living in the here and now and not pining after the next adventure (or at least mental diversion).  Praise the Lord for His grace.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Harriet Update

I know I'm biased, but I really do have a darling baby.  There is just something unbelievably wonderful about her wakey-wakey little eyes that are now able to focus (sort of) on mine and say, "Good morning!  What are we going to do today?"  Even if all she is going to do is sleep and eat and poop.

Sleeping in the co-sleeper has been a bit of a no-go this week.  She doesn't mind being placed in it for her naps, but nighttime is another story.  Maybe it's because I'm so exhausted that I don't really care if she sleeps in my arms all night.  She's only this little for so long, you know.  I would want to snuggle up with my mommy, too.

I'm thinking that Harriet must be on a bit of a growth spurt because she is eating practically all of the time when she is awake.  I feel kind of bad because every time I hand her off to Steve for some good daddy-daughter bonding time, she is content for about ten minutes and then starts wailing to be fed.  But again, she's only this little for so long, and pretty soon she'll be more eager to play for longer stretches.  Steve is the diaper/clothes changing king, though, and even though we'll probably never have a perfectly equal share in parenting responsibilities, I'm very grateful when he does just scoop her up and entertain her for a while.

Clara has been coming over in the mornings to keep an eye on the munchkin while I run about and take a shower, tidy the house, etc.  I'm trying to keep things simple and only plan on making the bed and keeping up with the dishes on a daily basis until Harriet settles into more of a naptime/playtime routine.  The frozen meals I made last month have been so helpful - I just stick one in the fridge to thaw (supposedly overnight, but I usually forget and end up thawing it for most of the day) and then Steve sticks it in the oven when he gets back from work.  So snappy.

In short, Harriet is so little and so lovely.

Monday, July 19, 2010

One Year Later

(I meant to post this yesterday, but a busy day of church, Wal-Mart, baby, nap, and evening Bible Study didn't really allow time for it.  Oh well.)

Happy Anniversary to Us!

(I love you, Mr. Wonderful.)

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Happy Sappy!

One year ago today, we were rehearsing it up:

One year later we're sitting groggily in our little house following a rather tumultuous night of an awake baby and an upset tummy.  But, we did survive the hour long trip to Kearney, dinner at Red Lobster and a 2.5 hour theatre experience with the munchkin and she hardly made a peep.  Perhaps she was so satisfied by the fact that she gained 13 oz. in one week that she decided to take the evening off and sleep.  

In honor of the anniversary celebration, I did something that I haven't done in years: I filled out a meme.  That hearkens back to the ol' LiveJournal days, eh?  I know it's silly, but I had fun and it is my blog after all.  

Here we go...

What are your middle names?  My middle name is Elizabeth, after my dad's mom (I think that Mom was trying to squeeze as many syllables as possible into her firstborn's name), and his middle name is Paul, after his dad.  I have an infatuation with the name Paul (it probably began when I read Dombey and Son during the Summer of Dickens), so I'm glad that his parents had the forethought to make that his middle.

How long have you been together?  The funny thing is that we weren't really together when we were "together," since I was in South Dakota and he was in Missouri for the majority of the time.  But we technically became a couple in January 2009 and got married in July 2009.

 How long did you know each other before you started dating?  Sheesh, we met at the CBI alumni banquet in May 2008, wrote letters to each other all summer, started texting/calling in September (cookies are very romantic things, I discovered), and became Facebook-official in January.  So we actually knew each other for 7 months before things got serious.  And that was plenty long enough.

 Who asked whom out?  Since the relationship was developed long distance, we didn't have that stereotypical "asking out."  But Steve started the whole Facebook spiel, and I eventually sent the box of chocolate chip cookies down to Calvary Bible College, and he subsequently called me and made several trips to I guess you can say that we worked together on this project.

How old are each of you? I'm 23 and Steve is 24.  He's 8 months older than I am, so we get to be the same age for part of the year.  While we aren't exactly teenagers anymore, people are constantly saying things like, "You don't look old enough to be married."  So, yeah, we look like we're fifteen, but that will pay off when we're youthful-looking seventy-year-olds, right?

Do you have any children together? One dear sweet little week-old girl named Harriet Alice.  She is the cutest thing that ever happened.  We love her muchly, yes we do!

What about pets? We have Florianus Prinzel, the Sausage Dog.  We both swore before marriage that we wouldn't have any pets besides nice, unemotional creatures like fish, but then we read a book about sausage dogs on our honeymoon.  And then when we were made aware of a sausage dog for give-away, I lost my mind entirely and Steve complied.  Florianus drives us bananas (irrational creature that he is) and somehow has a bladder that is smaller than a poppyseed, but we like him well enough and he keeps us entertained.  I might cry when he dies.

Which situation is the hardest on you as a couple? Hmm.  Well, we've been through an amazing amount of accumulative life garbage over the past six months.  It hasn't been one big thing, but lots of little things and those add up, you know.  However, as far as a challenge to our relationship as a couple I would say that Steve's 12-hour night shift job has been the most stressful on a regular basis.  Being in an entirely different waking/sleeping routine is rough on a marriage.

 Did you go to the same school? We were both home schooled, if that counts.  Sometimes it feels like we went to the same school because home schoolers generally have similar experiences, and Steve was home schooled in a way that was a lot closer  to the methods my own parents employed.  In other words, neither of us would fit into the school-at-home category, which Steve took advantage of and I regretted.  (Not really.  I just desperately wanted order and routine and textbooks.)

Are you from the same hometown? Nope.  Steve is from Modesto, CA and I'm from landlocked Broken Bow, Nebraska.  But for beach-loving me, I think that this alliance affords geographical advantage.  We may be living in the Midwest, but we'll always have to go visit his family in California.

 Who is the smartest?  Steve.  And that's not just because he wears glasses.  (Although when it comes to the practical aspects of life - like remembering where he put his glasses - I definitely win the prize.)

Who is more sensitive? I guess that I'm less cynical, but Steve is better at noticing when things aren't right.  Maybe he is just bolder about verbally recognizing the issues, too.

Where is the furthest you two have traveled together as a couple? Ireland.  Well, we weren't a couple then...we didn't even know that the other existed...but we were in Ireland in the same general place during the same exact time in Summer 2006.  But that doesn't totally count.  The farthest we've traveled as a couple was to Disneyland for our honeymoon.  Fun times.

Who has the worst temper? We both avoid confrontation like the plague (which is a good and bad thing), so tempers rarely flare.  I'm usually the first to get really testy and irritable and start bawling.  Steve tends to be majorly chill unless something illogical floats his way - usually the dog or some kind of instruction manual.  In either case, we're pretty quick to kiss and make up.

Who does the cooking? I do it on a regular basis during our normal routine, but since Harriet's arrival Steve has been the primary chef.  After all, if I don't eat she doesn't eat, so he has decided that he is indirectly helping out with feeding her if he feeds me.  Hey, that works out fine and dandy.  We really enjoy making a "date" out of cooking, though, and pulling together some crazy-fun dish from Mrs. Joy or Fannie Farmer.

Who is more social?  Oh dear.  In our natural, comfortable state I would say that our social level is about the same: we want to be around familiar people and talk about meaningful things.  But when it comes to meeting people and providing the required small-talk in order to build a relationship, I seem to pull through more often than Steve.

Who is the neat-freak? Me.  Hmm, I guess I am the most concerned about the overall neatness of our house and our general appearance, but Steve has his pet peeves.  Like when the trash is overflowing (sorry, dear!) and when the plastic in the cereal box isn't rolled down tightly.  Ahem.

Who is more stubborn? It depends on the situation, I suppose, but generally Steve is more stubborn, especially about situations that are somewhat removed from our own relationship.  However, sometimes I feel like I get my own way an awful lot.

Who hogs the bed? Most definitely me, what with being hugely pregnant and now having a nursing baby and all that requires.  But Steve is kind and sleeps on his six inches of bed without grumbling.

Who wakes up earlier? Me, again.  It's just so. hard. to linger in bed when the day is beckoning.  Sometimes he gets me to stick around past 9am, but that's rare.

 Where was your first date? Depends on what you consider to be a date.  Does the guy buy the meal?  If so, then it was after we were engaged.  (Pretty cool when the girl has to provide all of the funds for food and travel, eh?)  If not, I would consider our first real date to be when we decided to go talk at Denny's until 3:3oam.  Loveliness...even if the Potachos gave us gastrointestinal fits the next day.

How do you spend the holidays? Hanging out with my fambly, because we live about five miles away.  Otherwise we would be hanging out with his fambly.

Who is more jealous? This is an odd question.  I think we are equally possessive of the other.

How long did it take to get serious?  See above.

Who eats more? Prior to Harriet Alice, I would have definitely said that Steve ate more than I do.  But pregnancy and breastfeeding take it out of a girl (even one with a rather small appetite), and now I eat just as much as he does, if not more.  I seem to always be saying, "I'm hungry, I'm hungry."  Steve says that now I know what a teenage boy feels like.  Oh goody.  Now my life is complete.

Who does/did the laundry? We both do the laundry.  We both put stuff in the various machines and we both neglect to actually fold it and put in away.  It's a struggle.

Who’s better with the computer? Steve.  No question about that.

Who drives when you are together? Steve.  I drive sometimes, particularly on long-ish trips, but normally I let him drive.  He likes it and I get to read books out loud, so it's a happy medium.

Who is the romantic one? We are romantic in different ways, but Steve is the first to say "I love you," and to melt me with some sweet comment.  Or with flowers.  Or with a clean kitchen.  Or a chapter from Winnie-the-Pooh.  Or a kiss.  Hooray!

(Okay, gotta hand off the Harriet and go find a shower.)

Friday, July 16, 2010


We are discovering that most people, after offering congratulatory remarks, say something along the lines of, "Does she sleep through the night?" or "Are you getting any sleep?" or "How's the sleeping going?"  Discussions of babies and sleeping are as prevalent as the mention of heat/air conditioning during a summer pregnancy.  I know that most folks are trying to find a common ground of conversation and I appreciate it.  It's just kind of funny that sleep is always the topic.

I'm thankful to report that, yes, we are sleeping well.  As some of you know, Steve and I are trying the co-sleeping, family bed, whatever-you-want-to-call-it and having Harriet sleep with us.  The first few nights were horrible, not because she wasn't sleeping but because I was a nervous wreck.  When she was in bed with us I just knew that I would squish her or that the sheets would suffocate her.  If I put her in the bassinet, I stressed about her not breathing or that she would be bawling and I wouldn't hear her (riiiiight)   Harriet slept like a log while I sat next to her wide awake and as stiff as a board, craning to hear every breath and nervously moving the sheets.  It was so hard to let down my guard and let God protect her during the night.  I know that he loves her infinitely more than I do and that his watchcare is ever so much more sufficient than mine, but it was a rubber-meets-the-road issue of trusting him.

So I cried a bunch and talked to Mom about it and prayed very specifically about my concerns.  Praise God that his peace does pass all understanding and that he provided some great tools to ease my concerns.  We bought a wonderful co-sleeper  which works like a charm.  Harriet can't go anywhere, nothing can get up around her face, and since I know exactly where she is, I'm able to sleep really well.  She is still in bed with us, so she has all of the benefits of co-sleeping and we don't have to get up every few hours and fetch her from a crib.  And she seems to sleep better in her own spot without flopping into me and remembering that it's snack time.  It is fantastic.

I'm trying to focus on the quality of our sleep versus how many hours are spent sleeping.  Does it really matter if I'm getting four total hours of sleep one night and six the next if I'm feeling rested the next day?  Harriet is consistent in needing to snack every two to three hours, and she is also consistent about falling back to sleep quickly during the night.  We have learned (in our one week of parenting experience - woo) to stay awake past her 12am party time, make sure she's full and changed and then go to sleep.  This routine seems to afford the most solid sleep at the onset of the, early morning.  (This routine also requires a good nap in the afternoon, but that works well thus far).  

Harriet has her one week appointment this afternoon, so Auntie Clara and I are venturing out.  Then we are all heading down to Kearney for an evening of double-dating and seeing the community theater performance of The King and I.  So many adventures in one day!

(Oh goody!  Mendelssohn's Midsummer Night's Dream is playing on Pandora!)

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Mostly Baby Stuffage

So I'm sitting here with a mildly sleeping Harriet on my lap and I just realized that my tea and breakfast burrito are staring at me from the kitchen counter.  Uh, do I risk waking her up to go get them?  Such is the question of the first morning of Going Solo.

I'm not going entirely solo since Clara is coming later this morning.  Steve tootled off to work an eight-hour day of training for his new position.  It's still a night shift, but at least it will only be an eight-hour night shift and will be on a predictable weekly schedule.  The new routine feels fine and dandy when I think about it during the day time.  It's only when I'm crawling into bed thinking that this is one of the last few nights of normalcy (as normal as sleeping with a baby goes) that I start bawling.  Oh dear.

There is a lot of Baby Stuff floating around in my brain right now (imagine that), so I don't really know where to start.  I do know that I'm not particularly in the mood to share some detailed birth story.  That said, I would be remiss if I did not mention that the best way to handle a 24-hour labor is to be oblivious to the fact that intense back cramps are actually contractions until a few hours before the precious baby makes her appearance.  And that an epidural is proof of the doctrine of God's common grace.  Want more?  You'll just have to find a more private way of contacting moi.

Harriet is the best baby.  She is generally calm, has about six massive poopy diapers a day, and eats as if her next meal will be months away instead of minutes away.  Every day reveals that she is more Steve than me - actually, I'm beginning to wonder how much of me is in her at all.  She has Steve's nose and mouth and eyes and hairline and concerned forehead.  They sleep in the same position and make the same funny expressions when waking up (or attempting to wake up).  Her most awake time is between 12am-1am.  She does have dark hair, though, and it may be curly.  I'll hold out for that.  My favorite thing is when she is nursing and she wraps her little pinky finger around my index finger as if to say, "I've got you, Mom. You can't go anywhere now."  I'll have to get Clara to take a picture when she does it next.

I'm doing really well, now that the first few days of overall blechy soreness are a thing of the past.  Lots of sitting around and taking ibuprofen and extra iron have helped with all of that.  I was really grateful that we have had so many days here at home to chill and get used to our new family dynamics.  We have spent more time just being this week than we have during any other time in this year of marriage and it has been refreshing.  Steve is amazing.  He has grabbed this fatherhood role by the horns and is just the kind of supportive, pro-active person I need right now and for always.  (And I would rent him out as a birth coach if that wouldn't be so...weird.)  I feel like I've fallen in love all over again with him and with Harriet.  Now there are two people who are so embedded in my heart that the very thought of us ever not being together makes me melt into a hormonal puddle.  Sigh.

Anyways, the beautimous baby doth stirreth.  I need to go fetch the breakfast before she realizes that she is beyond famished.

More later.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Harriet Alice Rodgers

Harriet Alice Rodgers
July 9, 2010 - 3:33am
6lbs 2oz

Monday, July 5, 2010

Baby Talk X

We were up and at 'em this morning and off to another appointment.  Nothing has changed much, everything looks good, and there was the usual confusion about who I am and what I was supposed to be doing there.  Woo-hoo.

Okay, the following were taken at the request of Melinda, who claims that she hasn't seen many pictures of me in an expectant state.  I'm not totally keen on the whole stand-in-the-same-spot-and-take-a-picture-each-week routine (not that I have a problem with people who do, you understand), so I don't have a whole slough of pictures to share. But thankfully I have a sister who can whip out her camera and take some after the Fourth of July shindig at the parents' house.

Yay.  Complete with a sticker from Charlotte which reads, "I love you, Amelia."

The clutch the stomach look.

And this may be the expression you'd receive when asking when the due date is.  Depending on how hot it is, or how many times I've answered the question already that day.

I don't have anything else to say on this particular front.  Au revoir.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

The Our Mutual Anniversary Present

So we were having a bit of trouble coming up with a good plan for celebrating our anniversary this year since we have no idea when Baby Rodgers will show up.  I couldn't imagine that she (or we) will be exactly anxious for us to sneak away on an extended weekend to Disneyland - or even Lincoln for that matter.  We also don't do particularly well at getting presents that really meet the surprise quota, nor are we all that great at actually coming to a decision when buying gifts.  After all, how will we know that we bought the absoballylutely perfect thing?  After spending at least an hour tossing around ideas, we were still coming up short.  At least our anniversary wasn't for a couple more weeks.

Then, a few days later, inspiration hit.  We would buy an espresso machine.  This would be perfect because a) we both like espresso, b) we both like to experiment with making drinks, c) we like saving money, d) we would increase our popularity as a couple by about 200% and e) we would consequently be very happy people.  Steve started looking around on and not only found one that was in our price range, but that also featured a $20 rebate coupon.  This is where having a husband who could write for Consumer Reports pays off.  The best part?  The whole shebang arrived a mere two days after the order...and that was with Free Super Saver Shipping.

So purdy.

We had some beans ground at Starbucks and the result is fantastic.  We continue to experiment with different tampering techniques in order to get consistent espresso shots, but overall we are quite pleased with the performance of this little guy.

Here I be after attempting to steam milk for a latte.  Heh.  Let's just say that various and sundry parts of milk, coffee, water, and mugs were all over the counter and I kept yelling things like, "Eep!" and "Oh, crap!" and Steve kept laughing at me.  It was nice that the drink was worth the stress.

So, you know, if you're ever in the neighborhood, stop on by and have some espresso.  You may just want to wait outside until I have the milk steamed, though.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Restful Anticipation

Every day I wake up and think, "It could be today."  And every night I drift off to sleep wondering if this is the last night with just us two snuggled up.  

Rinse and repeat.

I'm really grateful that God provided all of the time necessary to get things done and that we aren't scrambling around at the last minute to set up furniture, or make frozen meals, or whatever.  However, in my quest to be hyper-prepared and organized I was unprepared for what to do when nothing else could be done.  Why can't I just know when Baby Rodgers will show up?  I need routine and predictability and the ability to stick everything on a schedule.  Or maybe I don't need it, I just want it.

Yesterday felt like I entered into stir-crazy panic mode: can I really just sit here and read a book?  Is that...okay?  Isn't something wrong with just sitting together and playing Civilization II on the computer for hours?  Surely there was a task somewhere to be done.  But try as I might, nothing could be found.  God is showing me that it is okay to just sit still and wait and enjoy these last few days of married life as we currently know it without the changes of a Baby or the stress of inconsistent work schedules.  There is a difference between taking grateful advantage of the time God provides for rest and being pensively idle.  I'm learning to relax and embrace restful anticipation.

This is my cheese-whiz of a sister, Little Annie Lou.  We were reading books at the library whilst Mom was sorting through the weekly chaos of summer reading program forms and explaining missing books.  Anne is very small for her age (she looks more like an 18-month old instead of a three-year-old), so when an older lady came over and started making googly-baby conversation with Anne, it was hard to keep from laughing.  "Oooh, you are such a cute little baby!" the lady oogled.  "What is your name?"  The question was in reference to Anne, but stated as if I would answer.  Anne looked straight at the lady and said "Anne" as clear as any three-year-old should.  The lady was surprised and I was amused.