Friday, May 28, 2010


Hello, bloggie, my old friend.  It's been a while.  (But I have still written more posts than Steve has written for his blog.  Tee-hee)

Blarggie, blarggie.

Anyways, back to the sewing grind.  I fixed the serger all by my lonesome this afternoon.  Props pour moi!

Pray for the parents: they are trying to get the bakery open for tomorrow morning and there is still much to be done.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

*hum of the sewing machine*

Amelia still sews
Pink scraps on sewing room floor
Lots of sweet dresses

Friday, May 14, 2010

Trip Prep and Other Things

The long awaited trip to the east is coming quickly upon us.  Steve is getting off early (like 3am) so that he can get more sleep.  I think I have everything ready to go: food purchased, maps printed, clothes packed, car tuned up, and so on.  After a long day of work (last day!) and a Shutterfly party here at the house, I'm feeling rather bushwhacked.  It'll be nice to just drive and drive and drive tomorrow.

Why are we going?  Our original plan for the trip was to visit Jerseyville, IL, again so that we could get a better feel for the church, hang out with the Georgeffs, and scout out a place to live.  Now that Steve has been accepted into Covenant Seminary (!!) our relocating and housing plans have changed, but we still want to visit the church and hang with the Georgeffs.  Plus it will make for a nice getaway before the Baby arrives.  Gotta sneak in that "babymoon," after all.

What are we planning to do?  Steve is preaching on Sunday morning.  We want to take advantage of the free things to do in St. Louis.  We want to see people in Kansas City on the way back.  I want to practice being purposeful in my photography, now that I have a coupon for a free photo book and all.

I hope Florianus doesn't wig out completely.  It's not that I'm particularly sad to leave him behind.  I just really dread the aftermath of incontinence upon our return.  It usually takes him about a week to progress from puppy to house-trained-dog stage again.  He ate a jalapeƱo today because I accidentally dropped one on the floor whilst making my morning supply of scrambled eggs, cheese, and jalapeƱos.  He is a very strange creature.

My reading list is varied these days: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (re-reading out loud with ze hubby), The Subtle Power of Spiritual Abuse, and Three in a Bed (a book on the benefits of sleeping with your baby).  Maybe this trip will allow me to whittle some of these away so that there is room for other reading.  Steve got a bunch of interesting books today and I'd like to dive into those.

Farewell until Tuesday night!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Baby Talk VII

(Heh.  Do you realize how tempting it is for me to say, "I've been so busy and the blog is suffering and I hope you don't think that I'm a terrible person," and so on and so forth, yada-yada?  Yep, it's tempting.  I'm not going to do it.)

  • I made a massive to-do list of Things to Get Done Before the Baby Arrives.  It already has a majority of the items checked off, mostly because it makes me feel better to make a list that includes things that I've already accomplished on it.  Slightly check-mark obsessive?  That's me.  There were some items to purchase and ones to acquire that now have check-marks next to them, and that is pretty swell.  Steve is relieved that plastic pants aren't really pants, but are just plastic diaper covers.  I'm relieved to have finally placed an order with Motherwear.  My uncle and aunt contributed quite a collection of fun items (including an R2-D2-esque diaper pail) which arrived via the grandparents last week.  Yay!
  • There is a Baby Shower in the works thanks to My Favourite Aunt.  Mark June 11th on your calendars.
  • One Rubbermaid tub just isn't enough room to house the Baby Stuffage.  That's a good thing, I suppose, but I do need to get another tub.  It thrills my organizational soul to remove things from the Grocery Kart bags and put them into a tub.
  • This is my last week of work! 
  • Mom and I ventured forth to a LLL meeting last night down in Kearney.  The topic was on creating a birth plan which included things that would help breastfeeding get off to a good start.  It was neat to hear about the different birth plans and actual birth experiences of the moms in attendance.  Some had their births go just as "planned," and others had very different experiences (emergency c-section, baby in NICU, epidural, etc).  The most encouraging thing was that each of these situations resulted in a totally positive breastfeeding experience.  Some of the moms were expecting their first baby, others were nursing while pregnant, and some were older moms who came along to share.  Overall it was a positive experience and I look forward to going back.  The neato thing is that I am now in contact with a doula (I didn't know they existed around here) who may be able to not only help us review natural birth techniques, but also attend at the birth.  We shall see.
  • This Baby is going to be good at Jazzercise.  She has been particularly interested in stretching her legs out with such force and persistence that I can feel and see her little heels.  Sweet, funny, and rather shocking.
That's all for now, folks!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Of wanting to be with the Dearly Beloved and New Habits

We are getting somewhat used to this whole 12-hour night shift routine, I think.  That's what I like to think, anyway.  It's still hard not to burst into tears at random intervals, or to get lonely in the evenings, but it's not as though I'm in a perpetual melancholic funk.  Reading the blog of a marine wife, and keeping in touch with a friend whose wedding plans are constantly changing at the discretion of the military helps keep things in perspective.  After all, my husband can at least come home at, day.  We wonder about some of Steve's coworkers, these guys who can work this stupid shift for 20+ years and still keep plugging away.  Either they have amazing stamina, or they don't like to be around their wives.  Hopefully it's not the latter, but that's the case all too often.  We do want to be around each other andGod is continually pouring out his grace on our little lives to fit that in when we can.

(I'm still praying for a day shift.  It can happen.)

The thing that has been the most helpful for me is to establish better habits in a routine-less schedule.  It is shying away from the mindset of "get up at 7am, read the Bible for 30 minutes, be showered by 8am...or die."  Now I am working on developing habits that make life less blech.  Here are some that have been particularly helpful:

  • Our Mutual Bible Reading: Steve and I have a hard time squeezing in a time for reading the Bible together, so we are reading through the Bible using the same daily reading plan.  He reads the passages when he can at work, and I read them in the morning or evening, depending on how my day goes.  We can still interact with each other about the passage as time allows, and that helps.  When we miss a day, we don't freak out.  We just read whatever is supposed to be read the next day.  
  • First Breakfasts:  I usually wake up a few minutes before Steve gets back in the mornings, so I take the opportunity to eat some whole-grain cereal, or toast, or something.  This gives me a jump start on the morning (i.e. I don't feel like puking), and it lets me snuggle up with Steve for a while before he goes to sleep and I start the day.  Then I eat a larger breakfast of eggs, yogurt, fruit, etc, a few hours later.
  • Getting Put Together:  For a while I was slugging around until the last minute before getting ready for the day.  Since I am now raising my glucose levels right off the bat, I have the energy to get up and head straight for the shower.  I make the effort to get entirely ready for the day - fixing my hair, putting on make-up, and getting my shoes out.  It's a lot easier to face the morning when I feel more like a human being and less like a slug bug.  (Steve had a dream that I was yelling at him to get himself pulled together when he gets up.  Poor guy.)
  • The Crockpot: This appliance is God's gift to me.  Enough said.
  • The 15-Minute Tidy:  My mom is the FlyLady Queen, and her diligence is both inspirational and mind-boggling.  I have adapted the FlyLady methods for my life so that I spend 15 minutes a day tidying one section of the house.  Monday is Bedroom/Bathroom, Tuesday is Living Room, Wednesday is Kitchen, you get the idea.  Today I have to Declutter something.  Scary, but necessary.
  • Reading and Writing: I think that feeling like I needed to be "doing" something kept me from taking the time to stop, sit down, and write/read for a while.  This blog helps with the writing, and this week I've been spending about 30 minutes in the evening reading through a really interesting book (more on that later).  This habit gets me out of myself for a little while and gives my overactive imagination something to do for a little while.
Are there habits that you are developing to make your life less stressful?

Wednesday, May 5, 2010


Happy Cinco de Mayo, everybodeeeee!  (Oh dear, we have Italian food on the menu tonight - should I switch it?)

Last Friday was Teri's last day of work at the soda fountain.  She has worked there for 5.5 years and is totally amazing.  We wanted to give her something to commemorate her time at the soda fountain and the time spent with us, so I made this last week:

It was a super easy and relatively inexpensive project: you just need a shadow box (the "scrapbooking" shadow boxes were about $20 cheaper than the shadow boxes in the framing section of Hobby Lobby), some fun 12x12 paper and a bunch of stickers, pictures, and knick-knacks.  As you can tell, I included bits of old menus, a mint, the heading from the daily newspaper that she always read, and a wooden nickel.  Steve helped me find the great bottle cap letters, as well as the glass of pop (which is actually an eraser).  I don't even like scrapbooking all that much, but this was really fun.

Speaking of work, I need to get ready to head in that direction.  *peeks outside*  Ack, the wind doth bloweth again.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Tuesdays Unwrapped: The Everyday Weekend

I woke up in a rather grouchy mood this morning.  I couldn't think of anything beautiful to unwrap and expound on.  I think I was feeling moody because we had such a fabulous weekend and now it is over.  Back to hard day's nights again.  But as I thought about our weekend and just how deliciously usual and boring it was, I started to perk up and realize that the memory of it and the hope of another weekend like it in the future can make the humdrum of Monday and Tuesday nights substantially better.

Our weekend was wonderful because:

  • we played glow-in-the-dark mini golf at a the somewhat sleezy Big Apple Fun Center and laughed a lot.  
  • I got to walk around this silly old town with my Mom, and go to a garage sale and a book sale.
  • We figured out what was happening with the new lawn mower and Steve got the yard looking ship-shape.
  • I cleaned out my car and went to the automatic car wash for the first time.  That was cool.
  • We spent a lot of time talking on the couch.
  • We went to church for the first time in weeks and I was able to greatly benefit from the sermon without feeling compelled to critically analyze everything the guy said (do you know how long it's been since that has happened to me?  Three years at least).
  • We spent the afternoon worshiping with my parents and another family in the park and then took silly pictures.
  • We came home and took a three-hour nap.
  • We spent the evening making a weekly menu, going grocery shopping, eating frozen pizza, and reading on the couch until the wee sma's.
On this Tuesday, I am grateful for the beauty of a loverly, every day sort of weekend with my husband.  Praise God for this gift and for the grace to launch into another week.

tuesdays unwrapped at cats

Monday, May 3, 2010

Baby Talk VI

One of the interesting things about having grown up in a small town is that people know that I am a former Hajda, but since there are so many Hajdas it is easy to get me mixed up with some of the others.  It doesn't help that I vanished off the face of the planet while attending ~3 years of school.  The point of all of this is that Clara gets confused for being me when it comes to the whole expecting a Baby thing.  Folks are constantly asking her, "So are you the one expecting the baby?" or making the comment to her husband, "I hear your wife is expecting a baby."  (To which he replies, "Well, that's news to me.")

In processing this confusing phenomenon, I begin to wonder, Do people think that Clara looks pregnant?  (She most certainly doesn't - since she isn't, after all.)  Do people think that I have gained about 30 pounds in my abdomen for no good reason?  Do people really know the difference between us, or when Clara really does have a baby will they think it was the longest gestation period in history?  It's weird.  We were somewhat glad when all of us string-playing Hajdas (and former Hajdas) performed for the hospital volunteer luncheon, since the guest list consisted of the majority of news-sharing individuals and I was definitely wearing maternity clothes.

After the performance, I ran into an older couple outside.
Wife: Oh, I see you are expecting.
Me: Yes, in July.
Husband: Well, you women will do that, won't you?

Ahem.  Yep, sir, I just pushed a little "Play" button when I thought that it was time to have a kid.

Steve had a good response to a pregnancy comment the other day.  A gal about our age (who is also expecting in July) asked if our pregnancy was planned or unplanned.  Steve nicely said, "Well, I guess you could say that it was unplanned because we weren't worried about planning it."  This response serves the purpose of involving the sovereignty of God in the creation of new life, while keeping the questioner feeling friendly toward you.  I'm going to use it again if the opportunity arises.

I broke down and went to a garage sale to buy baby clothes - pink baby clothes.  I came away with 10-12 summer outfits for a 0-3 month girl, including oodles of onsies, for only $8.  They are darling.  If Harriet is really Edmund, then he will just have to wear pink outfits for a while.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

The Party's Over

Do you ever find yourself comparing your life, your marriage, your photography/crafting skills, your writing ability, your whatever with the lives, marriages, skills, and abilities of other bloggers?  It's so easy to slip into the trap of thinking, "Wow, her life is so much...prettier...than mine."  Or, "Wow, she thinks her husband is wonderful all of the time."  You begin to wonder, "What's wrong with me?"

Steve and I were discussing being Real the other night, and I think that can apply not only to interactions with people in our physical area, but also to how we portray ourselves in the online arena.  Of course, there's a balance to be don't really need to know the minute details of some nervous breakdown I had last week.  However, it would be a lie to pretend that life is picture perfect all of the time.

Speaking of picture perfect, yesterday was Steve's birthday and AnnieLou's birthday.  I/we hosted a party on Thursday night which involved cramming about 18 people into our teeny weeny living room/dining room and feeding them lots of tacos and cake.  Throughout the day, I had visions of taking a billion Martha Stewart Living-style photos to detail the event, just so I could put them on my blog and say, "Tee-hee!  I have a pretty life, too!"

Guess what?  Not only was the party about as far removed from Martha Stewart Living as you could get (I dropped Steve's birthday cake), but I totally and entirely forgot to even get my camera out of its case.  Brilliant, I tell you.  So today I get to practice being Real about the birthday party:

Behold the remains of the Double Chocolate Roll birthday cake.  It was very yummy (you can't beat homemade chocolate whipped cream), although not as attractive as I would have liked.  People enjoyed it, as evidenced by the lack of leftovers.

Behold the state of our kitchen following the party.  It really was very clean earlier that day.  And it's clean again, thanks to Steve.

Behold the empty gift bags.  At least they weren't empty when they were handed to the Birthday People.

Behold the sleepy night-shift-working Birthday Boy.

There you have it: a Real Amelia Rodgers birthday party, documented 18 hours after the event.  Even if I wasn't pulled together enough to create Beautiful Blogdom with it today, that most definitely doesn't negate the fun time we had as a family.  Plus, it's an opportunity to practice what I want to preach about being Real, not only with the peeps around me, but with online friends as well.

(Hey, we actually have a Saturday today and we were up at 6:58am...what's wrong with this picture?)