Monday, December 21, 2009

Look How They've Grown!

Here's a peek at Clark and his little baby pal Regan....only about 2 1/2 weeks apart in age. Regan was wide awake but Clark just couldn't be bothered to wake up for something as mundane as a picture!

Saturday, October 31, 2009

He's Here.......early!

The newest member of our family, Clark James Decker, arrived Thursday morning, October 29, at 6:20 AM. He weighed 7 lbs 5 oz, and was 19 1/2 inches long.

Short birth story: my water broke while driving Kaylee to preschool on Wednesday Oct 28 at about noon. We got to the hospital at around 4 PM. After nearly 8 hours of minimal contractions and no change the doc made the decision to start Pitocin at around midnight. That got things going! Not the totally natural birth we planned but it didn't take much pit to get things started and we did manage to avoid pain meds or any other interventions. He was turned crooked so it took some time but once he straightened out he came in a hurry!

He was nearly 4 weeks early by the initial due date, so his coming surprised us as well as the doctors! He had a little trouble getting started breathing and now has some problems with jaundice, but we came home together today and for the most part are doing great. Here are a few pictures. As you can see, we all think he's the cutest, most precious baby ever. Don't you agree? :-) I'll try to post more pics when we get settled in.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Welcome Baby Regan!!!

A great big welcome to my friends' (Pete and Jenni) beautiful baby girl, Regan Kail. Born last night at 6:26 PM weighing in at only 5 lbs 13 oz. She's a tiny little bundle! I sure hope the hat I made for her doesn't cover her entire face :-)

Congratulations! We can't wait to meet her!

(Pics sent to me courtesy of her proud Grandma S. but I think her Aunt Erica must have taken them. Thanks for sharing!)

Does this make me wish my baby would come soon? OK, I admit, a little bit. That sweet little face looking up at her mommy just melts your heart, doesn't it? But mostly I hope he stays put for at least another month, so that I can get all my fall work done first. Then I can settle in with my baby and not have to fret about what needs done outside. Oh, and I really need to finish that sweater and hat! So hang in there baby. Just another month. And then it will be our turn.

Monday, October 5, 2009

More Prepared

Well, I'm feeling much more prepared for baby now. The clothes, blankets, and diapers are washed, folded, and put away in their appropriate places. The car seat is washed and reassembled, and the BundleMe is inside it. The Moby wrap is washed. Plus the baby sweater I started knitting about 6 months ago is finally getting to the final stages....I only have the sleeves left to finish! So whenever baby decides to make his entrance, we're pretty much ready. There are still some things I"d LIKE to get done before he arrives, but nothing major or terribly urgent. Such things include.....

-Wash the bouncy seat cover and the Moses basket cover
-Sew some new cloth wipes: the ones I'm currently using for Miles will do, but I could use a couple dozen more with 2 in diapers.
-Pack the hospital bag. OK, theoretically this should be done before I go into labor, but I've come to realize how little you actually need to take. I can easily throw a few things in a backpack just before we leave, or worst case scenario, have Rich bring whatever we need to the hospital after the birth!
-Pack an overnight bag for the kids to take to Grandma's. Again, nice to have done, but not totally necessary ahead of time. Besides, if it's the middle of the night, Grandma will just come here, and then a bag won't be needed anyway!
-Knit baby a hat and possibly a matching blanket (the blanket most likely won't get done!)

So, I"m feeling much better. Plus, I got my house more in order this weekend, and we've got plans underway for our bonfire party on the 17th. Now if it would just stop raining so the contractors could get the siding on our house!!!


Friday, October 2, 2009

Can You Actually Have Too Many Onsies?

I recently realized that I likely have less than 6 weeks left before baby comes and I have NOTHING prepared for him. I mean nothing. So this week I decided that I'd better start getting ready.

I dug the car seat out of the basement where it's been hanging out since Miles outgrew it. I located the bouncy seat down there too, used more recently for baby Evan. Sometime this weekend I plan to wash the cover on the car seat at least. I'm in the process of moving the kids clothes to a bigger chest so that baby can have the one they're currently using (and sorting out anything they've outgrown in the process.)

Since I'd vowed to get started, I picked up the newborn baby boy clothes boxes from Mom's attic this week. The ones that have been going back and forth between my sister and I for our boys for about 3 years. When Miles was born, I seem to remember that there was only 1 box. Somehow it has now grown into 2 full rubbermaid tubs. So tonight I sat down and sorted out all the things that I thought baby could wear..... sleepers, onsies, some hats, and a few actual outfits for Sundays and/or special occasions. After I washed them and started folding, I was amazed at the amount of onsies there are in those boxes. So after I got them all folded, I counted, just to see how many there actually were. I found.....

40 onsies (12 are plain white)
6 newborn sleepers
11 small sleepers (0-3 mo)
5 fuzzy fleece sleepers
6 long sleeve onsies wth pants
8 outfits (cute little things he'll probably never wear)
1 baby sock.

So, tell me, what newborn baby actually needs this many clothes????? Since Ian and Miles were both summer babies, they practically lived in onsies for their first few months. Plus it's always nice to have onsies to layer under sleepers when it's cold out. But 40 of them? Where did they all come from? And what happened to all the socks? I know socks disappear, but honestly, I had at least a dozen pairs for Miles. Did the various dryers actually eat 23 socks?

Anyway, I'm off to put a load of newborn cloth diapers in the machine. And see if I can find the box with the baby blankets in it. I have a feeling I'll be washing diapers MUCH more often than baby clothes!

Friday, September 4, 2009


Here are a few snapshots from Dick and Mary's recent visit. The kids were thrilled to have them here, and we were too! We can't wait for them to get all moved so we can see them much more often!

Kaylee and Grandma having a good snuggle. Kaylee, actually go to sleep during the day? Are you kidding? She did rest for a while though.

Miles trying to convince Grandpa to read just one more book. Do you think he's going to succeed?

Grandpa's "babies". I guess Miles thought he needed more than one. (Notice Miles cute cloth diaper? I just had to point that out! )

Saturday, August 29, 2009

What I Did Today

9 quarts of tomatoes, 7 pints of dill pickles, and 8 pints of salsa. And that's just a small dent in the tomatoes and cucumbers out in the garden.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Summer's Over Already?

I know, I know, it's been nearly 3 months since I posted. Yes, it's been crazy around here this summer. Yes, I could have found the time to post, but it just didn't' seem to be on the top of my priority list! So here's quick rundown of our summer.

June was cold and wet. The garden grew slowly and the weeds quickly. The kids played outside every chance they got and I spent a lot of time hoeing. We did get a bumper crop of strawberries though. Kaylee enjoyed helping make jam.

Near the end of the month we had our ultrasound, and discovered that we're having another little boy!

July was a month of travel. Miles turned 2 on the 3rd, and was super excited about his Thomas the Tank Engine set.

We lost my brother-in-law to cancer the next day and traveled to Missouri for the funeral, getting back just in time for our pre-planned camping trip to SD, where Kaylee caught her first big fish.

We got back from THAT in time to head to Minneapolis for our 10 year anniversary weekend, leaving the kids with Grandma. (YUMMY food!)

The garden started to produce a little, and the tomatoes almost succumbed to blight.

August finally brought a few warm days, green beans, and the first ripe tomatoes. Here's my canning helper and I at our first tomato canning session of the year. Like our aprons? ;-)

We also had a welcome visit from Rich's grandparents, and spent 2 and 1/2 hectic weeks looking for places for them to live nearby. We finally found one the day before they went home! They hope to be moving up in the next month.

Kaylee turned 5 on the 25th, the first day of preschool. She got a new bike, complete with training wheels.

The past couple weeks I've started babysitting again, the tomatoes are finally ready to can, and we're taking Kaylee to preschool 3 days a week, so our days are full as can be. And in only 2 weeks it will be Boyden time already. Where has the summer gone?

Monday, July 20, 2009

I know, it's been forever since I posted last. Summer seems to do that to me. So once

Monday, June 1, 2009

Random Happenings

It's been a long time since I posted anything, so I thought I'd just give you a few random snapshots of our month.

With the coming of spring, we've spent a lot of time outside. The lawn needs mowing weekly now. Miles would love that job, if only he could reach the pedals.....

Speaking of Miles, here he is wearing his chocolate pudding goatee. I just had to reach for the camera, because I thought he looked just like his Daddy when Daddy has a goatee.

Baby Evan is growing and turning into his own little person. He loves the ExerSaucer nowadays. He reaches for things, rolls over and over, and is close to sitting alone. It's just crazy how fast babies grow. I think he gets cuter every day. He has lots of smiles, but I like this serious expression too.

Our baby-to-be seems to be growing as well. My tummy is, at least! It won't be long until we have a few ultrasound pictures to share. Probably sometime in the middle of June.

My Mother's Day gift from my sweetie. The card is a coupon for a massage. Isn't he thoughtful? And I absolutely love the bubble bath.

And finally, what do 2 silly kids do with new pails? Use them as hats, of course!

PS: For some cute pictures of Kaylee and her kittens, check out this blog. She's better at taking and posting pics of my kids than I am!

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Big Announcement

Most of you who read this blog probably already know our good news, but we're officially announcing it anyway.....we're expecting another baby! Little #3 is due November 21, 2009.

I saw the doc yesterday and got to hear the heartbeat, so that was pretty cool. It kinda makes feeling sick and tired all the time worth it.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

SOOO Tired

I have been so tired lately. Exhausted, really. To the point where I go to bed every night when the kids do regardless of the dishes in the sink, laundry piled high, and toys all over the floor. Too tired to do anything about it. Too tired to work outside, take pictures, or even write blog posts. If anyone has energy to spare I'm in need of some.


Thursday, April 30, 2009

Baby Days

I've been babysitting my new nephew Evan for 3 weeks now. He's such a cute, happy baby. The first week was tough, since he didn't like the idea of drinking his milk from a bottle and Miles was a bit jealous of Mommy spending so much time with "that baby", but everything has settled down and we're into a routine now. Isn't he sweet?

The kids think he's pretty nice too. Kaylee is totally fascinated by babies. Shes a great helper too. It's nice to have someone to run and get diapers, burp cloths, the pacifier, or whatever I need! :-)

Speaking of babies: our cat Summer had kittens yesterday! 4 little gray balls of fur. Kaylee was so excited. She's been down to see them four times already. I bet the poor momma cat would like a bit more peace and quiet, but she seems to like the attention as well. I remember the excitement of kittens when I was a kid. Looks Kaylee's a bit like her momma too!

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Gardens Coming Alive

I got my garden tilled 2 weeks ago, and promptly started planting things, but I finally got around to getting some pictures off my camera so the update waited until today. Here's the blank slate.....just tilled and waiting for seed and plants!

My seed stash....part of it anyway. I've got so many things to put in that I don't think I"ll have room for them all. I even had the tiller guy till up an extra spot for sweet corn and vines this year, but even with 2 gardens I may not have enough room. Guess things will be crowded again, cuz I'm not leaving anything unplanted!

I got twice the onions I ordered, so I ended up giving over half of them away. I really don't need 300 of just one kind of onions, especially since I've got 3 other kinds coming. Oh well.... :-)

So far I've got snap peas, spinach, mesclun mix, lettuce, carrots, and onions in the ground. The greens are up already! I"m anxiously awaiting the arrival of my seed potatoes, horseradish, garlic, and more onions any day now. Those need planting!

I've got tomatoes, eggplant, sweet and hot peppers, broccoli, some pansies, and various herbs started in the house, but it's really too early to put out much of that. I could put out the broccoli, if it was big enough, but it is doing really poorly. I"m not sure what the deal is with that. Maybe it's not worth raising it from seed. I"ll probably end up buying a few more plants to supplement what I"ve got.

Like I said before, the asparagus is looking tasty, and the raspberry plants look promising. I think we'll have some strawberries too, if it rains enough while they're blooming.

On the flower side, my crocus and tulips finally came up, but I've yet to see more than one daffodil. Hopefully they're just slow starters. The lily-flowered tulips are blooming. Most of my perennials are up and looking good. The daylilies I put in last fall along the shed are up, and it looks like over half of them made it through the winter. I haven't seen my peony bush yet, but I"m still hopeful for that. Tip for future reference: DON"T FALL PLANT PERENNIALS IN IOWA. It doesn't work. It's much better to start in the spring!

Of course, I"m always on the lookout for more flowers, but this year my goal is to wait until the local garden centers have their big sales in late May or June and stock up there. It's much cheaper that way, and I got some great plants last year. Hopefully I can wait that's hard to stay out of garden centers :-) Luckily I'm fairly busy with babysitting, so I don't have as much time to get out and dream as I'd like, at least for a few more weeks. I do want some more coneflowers, an aster or 2, and a bunch of hostas to put along my north house foundation wall. Mom has promised me a division of her black-eyed susans, and maybe some iris if she gets around to thinning them. So more gardens may be in the works!

That's about it on the gardening front. It's enough, I"m thinking. For now at least.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Much Better

The septic tank is in. After 1.5 days of not being able to send anything down a drain, I have great appreciation for modern plumbing conveniences. The kids thought their outdoor "bath" standing in a bucket last night was pretty exciting though. Everything's an adventure when you're a kid. Thank goodness for the warm weather we had yesterday!

So now I've got a load of diapers that badly needed washing in the machine, my birdhouse post moved, and my "new" perennial bed laid out. Unfortunately, it's rocky digging, so replacing the plants will have to wait until tomorrow. My back hurts. But I'm happy.

Oh, and we discovered something wonderful out in the garden today: the asparagus is up! Although I just planted it last year, and we're really not supposed to harvest much of it yet, Kaylee and I couldn't resist breaking off just one spear to eat right there. Yummy. There is absolutely no comparison between that and what you buy in the store. Even Rich agrees. Mmmmmmmm. I think I should have ordered another set of crowns. ;-)

Sorry, no pics....I can't find my camera. I think it's in the car somewhere.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

What a Day

It's been interesting around here today. We've had septic problems for some time, and have been living with a sump pump draining the tank every so often to keep it from backing up into the basement while we waited for the ground to thaw. Yesterday the pump quit. Luckily, they're coming tomorrow to install the new septic tank and drain field. While that means several hours without water, and digging up my favorite perennial bed, at least it will fix the problem. Then the pipe leading to the outdoor faucet in the basement sprang a leak, and sprayed water all over the basement when I tried to run the sprinkler in the garden this afternoon. Oh joy, more water in the basement. As if we didn't have enough already.

On the plus side, it was beautiful weather outside today. High 70's, sunny, with only a slight breeze. So of course the kids played outside, and got dirty as could be climbing the pile of rock to be used in the drain field. BUT, since we can't run any amount of water down the drain without it backing up in the basement, it was off to Grandma's for baths before Bible study. In the rush, I forgot to bring in my seedling plants that I'd put outside for a bit of real sunshine. You guessed it, when we got home, the dog had eaten half of the peat pots. I think I salvaged most of the plants, but we'll have to see.

I've got stacks of dishes and laundry that need attention, but I'm tired and I'm going to bed.

Tomorrow has got to be an improvement.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Springing Spring

It finally feels like spring outside today. And the forecast for this week is calling for highs in the 60s every day. Hooray! It feels like this winter has gone on forever. I can't wait to get out and enjoy it. There are tulips up!

I"m fully expecting my blogging to get even more neglected now, as I'm babysitting full time and spending every spare minute outside. So bear with me. I will check in now and then!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

A Dog's Life

I gave Misty a haircut this morning. She looks better, if you ask me. Not perfect, but hey, it was free!

Here's Mocha the other day. She's grown up to be quite the nice looking dog. I love her chocolate brown color. She's a sweetie too, if somewhat annoying at times!

Someone once said that you just can't look at a sleeping cat and feel tense. So here's your relaxation for the day. Doesn't he look comfy? I think I'll go take a little nap too....

Monday, March 16, 2009


It was beautiful today. Sunny and 70 degrees, with a slight breeze. Birds were singing. And I found this poking through the ground.....finally, spring is springing!

The kids and I enjoyed spending most of the afternoon outside. Of course, the mud puddles were the most fun.

Miles liked the rocks.

The swing got a lot of use.

We even explored the "jungle" behind the shed a bit

Then we climbed (and fell down) a few hills.

Finally, we decided to have supper outside, just to celebrate.

A bath is definitely in order tonight.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Gone Again

The kids and I are off in Missouri again. This time visiting Grandma and Grandpa Decker. And once again, I forgot my camera, so I won't be able to detail our visit for you. Sorry. Sorry also for the lack of posts the past while....there just hasn't been much of note to blog about! I do have some new knitting projects started: more longies for Miles, Kaylee's sweater, version 2, and a ribbed sweater thing for me in a beautiful to come as I get camera access again.

One of these days I'll share some of my spring projects too. Sooner or later. Now I'm off to enjoy my visit. :-)

Friday, February 27, 2009

Ducks in a Row

The kids have gotten into play dough lately again. I made some fresh yesterday, since the old stuff was getting kind of weird. I made some little ducks for Miles and Kaylee thought they were the coolest. She immediately started playing out the "Little Quack" book that we have about five little ducklings. And got mad at Miles when he wanted to squish her ducks.

Then today was made sugar cookies. The cut-out kind. I remember when I was a kid my mom would only let us make these kind of cookies once in a great while, which we thought was extremely unfair. Well, now I know why she wasn't crazy about it. Here's Miles after only 5 minutes of cookie cutting.

They had fun though. I lost count of how many finished cookies Kaylee ate. Luckily, they were small.

After the cookies were out of the oven, we switched to play dough again so Miles could use the cookie cutters. I wish I had a picture of his face when he tasted the "new cookies". Not exactly what he was expecting!