Thursday, December 31, 2009

Status Update

Happy New Year to all of our friends and family! We love you all!!! We're leaving Colorado and heading home tomorrow morning. We are really sad to be leaving and are amazed everytime we am here just how majestic this view is. We love it here. We have had a wonderful trip and visit, cannot wait to get back here!!!!

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Status Update.

I am going to post a couple status updates I've put on FB so that I can remember events.

Erin is thankful for weekends spent with my husband and son. We had a great weekend until Lincoln decided to start getting his fifth tooth (first on the top) today. He was a joy (haha) to be around all day long and didn't want to go to bed without a fight. He is in bed, hopefully sleeping well and will feel much better t...omorrow. Hope everyone else had a great weekend!

Friday, December 11, 2009

5 Question Friday-Christmas Style!

We will be visiting extended family in Colorado for Christmas this year. We'll have a get together with my mom and her husband and my Dad, his wife and my baby brother Matthew sometime before or after our trip. My older brother will be staying at home this year with his family of 5 and my younger brother is currently MIA.

1. Does Santa wrap the presents he leaves at your house?

Yes he will, but he'll be dropping off Lincoln's gifts in Colorado. 

2. When is your "big" Christmas celebration...Christmas Eve or Christmas Day? Tell us about it...

When I was growing up we used to have Christmas Eve with my paternal grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins and Christmas Day with maternal grandparents and uncle.  Since our parents are divorced and his live our of state, we have yet to establish 'our' tradition.  I have no idea what we'll end up doing for our big celebration, but we have years to figure it out.
3. Are you big on keeping tradition every year?

Yes, but see above.  It's complicated.   As Lincoln grows I will definately be trying to establish traditions for our family of three (or more as our family grows).

4. Do colored lights or white lights tickle your fancy?

I like all lights!
5. Do you decorate outside your house for Christmas?

I have a wreath on the door and you can see our tree outside, but I don't have a plug for lights and garland :(

Merry Christmas

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Trying to remember...

Just a year ago Lincoln was a tiny baby who came into our home and took over our lives and hearts!  We truly wouldn't have it any other way!

I want to jot down some things, so that if and when we might be blessed with another tiny little person we will look back at this and maybe remember a little bit.

1- Sleeping when baby sleeps:  This is advice we took straight to our pillows. I had made a decision that since I would only have 6 weeks off from work that I would make the most of it and soak up as much time with my son as I could.  I have to say I am so glad that I did.  I missed him desperately when I returned to work and I will always treasure those 6 weeks, lounging on the couch, sleeping, watching The West Wing or One Tree Hill, staring at your little face and body and just adoring you.  We rarely went anywhere or had visitors durning that time, just Lincoln and me, curled up and loving it!

2- Middle of the Night:  Have bottles already made, and waiting in a cooler for middle of the night feedings or have formula and water pre-measured and mix on demand.  Having a c-section prevented me from going up/down stairs too much, so this was important!  We gave Lincoln his last bottle around 10:30 or 11 p.m. and went to bed.  The first two months he was up twice in that time and would eat and go back to sleep.  Lincoln was and is the best baby and we were very rarely up for long periods in the middle of the night.  I can really only remember once, maybe twice- sadly hormones had me thinking it was the worst night ever and I am sure I was in tears over this.  ( Around 3.5 months we tried cereal in his bottle, sometimes it helped his sleep longer and sometimes not.  Once Lincoln was around 5 months old we were told that he no longer needed to eat in the middle of the night.  Over a couple of nights, really that fast, we made that bottle smaller and smaller, until we went in rocked him or patted his butt for a moment and he would go back to sleep.  Since he was about 8 months old, if he wakes in the middle of the night, we'll wait to see if he will settle himself or go in and pat his bottom. 

3- Bassinet v. Crib:  Putting Lincoln in his crib, in his room was impossible for me to think about being so far from him.  Now, I think now that it sounds irrational, but when you carry this person around with you, all the time for 9 months, and then have to put him in another room was not something I was willing to do, at all!  Lincoln did not begin sleeping in his own room until he was nearly 4 months old.  Partly because we were travelling to visit family and I saw no need to get him out of the pack and play and into his crib at home, then to travel and put him back in the back and play.  His transition to his room was easy and now if he is in the room with us, it is obvious that none of us are sleeping well.

4- Back to sleep: Lincoln always seemed to be very uncomfortable on his back once he passed 5 weeks old. We had been told about, and given alot of information on SIDS and I felt like something like that happening to Lincoln would be a nightmare. At the suggestion of Lincoln's babysitter we began putting Lincoln to sleep on his side with his back against the side of the bassinet.  This worked for us.  I can't say I didn't worry, but I felt comfortable knowing he was sleeping well and right next to me. 

5- C-Section/Abdominal Surgery Recovery: Use a pillow against your belly when sitting up.  Pack a bag going up/down stairs so you minimize multiple trips.

Lincoln now sleeps from 7:30 or 8 p.m. until 8 a.m.  On the weekends sometimes he'll sleep until 9 or so!! Awesome!  When he was tiny we'd put him to be late; I guess we've just made what time he goes to bed earlier as he's been sleeping longer- I don't know.  Lincoln has made alot of this very easy on us and we cannot be credited with much of anything. 

We are so blessed to be parents to Lincoln and really make an effort to remember to be grateful he is such a good baby, now toddler.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Not Me Monday

I do not have a bruise on my left cheek because my one year old kicked my butt threw his toy phone at my face.

I did not turn around to find Lincoln chewing on scissors after I had left them out.

I did not forget Lincoln's bag and all his bottles for daycare at home.

I did not go to Lincoln's 12 month pediatrician appointment without any toys, snacks or even diapers - we left from daycare and I didn't have my diaper bag.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Five Question Friday

1. Favorite gift you are GIVING this year?

Pictures of Lincoln.  We are hoping to go small scale for everyone this year, but our families seem to be doing the same things as always.

2. How many parties are you attending between now and Christmas?

Zero.  I am thinking about having a open house but we'll see.

3. What is your favorite Christmas song?

Oh Come All Ye Faithful. But I love all of it!

4. Who was your favorite elementary school teacher and why?

I liked my kindergarten and 3rd grade teachers, mostly because I remember personally connecting with them both.

5. If you had a choice to live in any other period of time (other than now) what era would you choose and why?

The 50s when cost-of-living wasn't so high and mom's stayed home with their kids.  Oh how I wish I could do that! ;)

What God might be trying to teach me...

I read a blog this morning by Ryan at thisisreverb this morning that really seems t convict me and make me dig deeper regarding my self-centered loneliness this week.  Ryan asked his readers me to try to pinpoint

What is God doing in your life right now?
What has God been teaching you?
If you were God, what would YOU be trying to teach you?

I learned alot about myself last year.  When your husband is diagnosed with cancer and undergoes 6 months of chemo and radiation and as a couple you decide to try to, and do successfully become pregnant (in case chemo damages your chances) you all of the sudden, without a doubt KNOW what is important.    It was reaffirmed to me that God is working in my life and was/is/has been with us throughout our lives.  I know without a doubt that I love my husband and he loves me, and that this is the core of my life and what I need to focus on.  Add to that core our handsome, now one year old son who is the sunshine in my days.  At our wedding, David's paternal grandparents told us to remember that it is us and God against it all.  We no longer rely on our families or friends.  I have good memories from last year.  It was hard.  Chemo was miserable for David.  I did not enjoy 4 months of morning all day sickness and losing 15 lbs in the process.  However, on the other side of it now, David and Lincoln are healthy; David is cancer-free; I am a lucky wife and mom!

This year, maybe God is reminding me to be contented with my own company.  Maybe God wants me to stand alone with David and Lincoln and be ok with that.  I crave friendships, communication and maybe even attention?  I also think that I am learning that I need to do nice things because I want to and not because if I do people will spend time with me.  It's hard because in alot of ways, I sometimes feel like I should be available for my friends and willing to do whatever whenever, but for how many years do I cook, bake and do for people whatever they ask. Maybe I need to find someplace to serve?  Someplace to give, someplace that needs me like I need to be needed?  <--- That felt like hitting the nail on the head.  Hm.  I am getting closer here maybe. 

It feels wrong and ungrateful to sit here and type that I feel unwanted and whatever else that is lying beneath the surface. 

I am grateful for my husband and my son.  I love our life and spending time with them.  I feel extremely incomplete when I am not with them. <--- There it is again, nail on the head!

I am going to read this again later and see if I have come up with any other conclusions... We'll see.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

This week...

Lincoln is walking and getting his fourth bottom tooth.  He doesn't have any top teeth.  He was walking across the living room last night and when I put him down from holding him he will stand and take a few steps.  It is adorable and mostly looks like a drunk frankenstein!!  He threw his toy phone at me the otherday when I wasn't paying attention, it totally caught me by surprise and he hit my cheek and WOW it hurt!  I sing to him at night when I put him to bed and now he'll hum when we are in the rocking chair!

I am lonely

I am a lot grumpy these days.  I am lonely.  David is at school four nights a week and also working weekends doing side work. I am trying so hard to be grateful, but its very hard. I miss my husband and while I felt I had made peace tried to accept it, it is getting harder.  I want our family time back and I want my husband to spend time with me. 

I am really enjoying my time with Lincoln in the evenings.  I really enjoy my time with him and miss him once he's gone to bed. 

I am bitter and frusterated that my friends have their own lives and can't just keep me company while David is at school.  That's not fair to my friends, but i will say that they haven't been coming through for me and it pisses me off. 

I am going to try to find some activities or friends to hang out with on a regular basis.  I am going to make my own plans, start some crafts and projects and do my own thing. 

I'll let you know how this goes.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Lincoln's 1st Birthday

Lincoln elbow deep in cake and icing.

Lincoln's FIRST birthday party was a couple weeks ago. I had a blast making the decorations and really focusing on him and the last 12 months.  He has changed so much (of course he has!).

I made his cupcakes and pennants that said Happy Birthday and Lincoln Oliver on them

It is insane to see him grow and change in these 13 pictures!  I adore this banner and it will probably hang up for the next year!

The party was a blast and we had a great turnout.  My mom and dad came, which is a big deal to me!  My dad brought my adorable little brother Matthew who is two and a half and a complete blast!!!  My brother drove about 4 hours with his girlfriend and their three boys.  The were all so good and we had a great time.  Lots of friends came and we enjoyed visiting with everyone. 

Lincoln did great.  I was absolutely worried that Lincoln might be overstimulated and unsure but instead he crawled right in and loved playing with all the kids and seeing our friends.  He enjoyed his cake and really wasn't very interested in the presents. 

Lincoln, I love you! Your dad loved you too!  We are so proud of you and so blessed to be your parents and watch you grow!  Happy Birthday Squishy!

Monday, November 16, 2009

3 Day Weekends

Lincoln and I have spent 2 three-day weekends together in the last month.  Neither were planned but oh, how I treasure this extra time with him.  One was due to Lincolns prolonged ear infection, virus and getting his third tooth and one due to a storm that caused alot of local flooding and power outages-at the babysitters, of course.

I have made a specific effort this year to be in the moment and loving my time with Lincoln.  Just 10 short days from his birthday and I so thankful that I have tried to soak up so many moments with him. 

While on my six week maternity leave I did nothing but dote on my little baby.  I didn't have meals prepared for David when he got home or have the house sparkling and clean.  I had a happy snuggly baby who I slept with, loved on, and became attached to obsessed with!

As Lincoln got older and still took evening naps, I would come home from work, have dinner with David and settle in on the couch, cuddling and snuggling with my boy I missed all day.

Now I don't get to hold you hardly enough.  You are busy and ready to get down and explore.  Sometimes I get to cuddle with you when I rock you to sleep at night, but most of the time you can't get comfortable and want to get into your crib.  Other times if you've fallen asleep in the car I can cuddle with you for a few moments until you wake up. In the mornings when you wake up, you are very clingy lately (not complaining- I love it) so I get good neck squeezing hugs first thing!

He doesn't use a pacifier anymore, but I need to work hard to help him transition to a sippy cup from the bottle.  He has really taken a liking to fish sticks and chicken nuggets lately and still likes pancakes, french toast, broccoli, green beans, peaches, pears... he is a great eater!

Today I am missing Lincoln and wondering if he misses me too. I treasure my 3 day weekends and extra time with him and miss him so much when they come to an end!  I wonder if his little heart wonders where I am. He is so fun these days; he is becoming independent, mobile, jabbers and laughs alot!  I love you my Lincoln and I love your hugs and kisses and seeing you hug and kiss your daddy too!  We love you so much!

Grateful ... Curious ... Overwhelmed

I have been planning Lincoln's First Birthday party for a while now for months!  I am so excited!  I have been working on some projects I was inspired to do after looking for party decor online.  We are going with a Blue and Green theme, no animated characters allowed.  I think we'll have years to pick out themed party decor, so in trying to keep it simple (hahaha, keep reading) I just bought colored plates and napkins.  I made a collage of pictures of Lincoln from his first year and I just love it!  I made a banner with a picture from every month of his little life so far.  It is 13 pictures long, starting with a picture from when he was just 3 days old and ending with a picture from Saturday.  I have made a banner to go on his high chair, for when he digs into a smash cake I'm making him.  We tested the process out for a photoshoot we had done and with David helping me decorate I LOVE how it turned out!  And the last banner I made says "Happy 1st Birthday Lincoln".  Each letter is on a circle or square and strung onto ribbon.  We also made a 2.5 or 3 foot tall 1 for the front door with a welcome sign. 

I am grateful (trying to be), overwhelmed and curious because everyone we invited to Lincoln's party has RSVP-ed.  Everyone!  I mean , its great that my son is loved and everyone wants to be a part of his day, but never did I think that my guest list would reach 40 of our family and friends!  All these guests will be squeezing into our townhouse.  The party is at 3:30 in the afternoon, planned that way so that hopefully we wouldn't have to really feed people, but I do like entertaining so I had some things planned.  However, I have reigned that in quite a bit.  We're having ham biscuits, pasta salad, carrots, cucumbers, and broccoli w/ ranch and chips and dip.  We'll also serve cupcakes and ice cream. 

I have no idea how Lincoln will react to so many people, but if I have to guess, he'll probably be shy and nervous for a few and then be just fine.  I have read some things about babies getting overstimulated in a big crowd, frightened by everyone singing to hm and even not liking the attention of everyone watching them open gifts.  But knowing Lincoln and how outgoing and friendly he is, after a few moments he'll be just fine.  Plus people should arrive in a trickle and not all at once, so that'll help too!  Hopefully the weather will be nice and our guest can be in the living room, kitchen and out on the back deck and in the yard.  I have no expectations and am just hoping that everyone squeezes in and has a good time!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

11 Months

Lincoln, my love, my son, my squishy,

I love you dearly and deeply. 

You are walking assisted around everywhere, pulling up on everything.
You can climb the stairs faster than mom and dad.
You can very quickly side step around furniture, take all your books and our DVDs off the shelves.
You are very good at walking while pushing your cart.
You can roll your ball back and forth and push little cars back and forth.
You turn a bath into a jacuzzi with your crazy busy legs.
You wear size 3, almost 4, diapers and 12, almost 18 month, clothes.
You finally have TWO bottom TEETH!  They arrived right around your dad's birthday (Oct. 16).
There are no signs of anymore teeth coming anytime soon.
You are busy, wiggily, cannot sit still.... and we love it!
You hardly nap.  A good nap for you is an hour and a half, we're thrilled when you sleep for 2 hours.
You sleep from about 8:30 to 8:00a.m.
You give hugs, and say AW.
You give wide open mouthed kisses.
You laugh the hardest when you are startled.
You like ham, cheese, grilled cheese sandwiches, pancakes, french toast.
You like cheese dip, like queso at restaurants!
You say YEAH and HUH when spoken too and it sounds like you know how to say DUCK.

We adore you, miss you when we're not with you and you drive us nuts when we're around you.  That is just how you'll come to feel about us in the years to come.  I hope always know we love you!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009


It does not mean to be in a place where there is no noise, trouble or hard work. It means to be in the midst of those things and still be calm in your heart.


Friday, October 16, 2009

A Tooth! Two, Three!!

Lincoln, It's your dad's birthday and you managed to get him a present and not tell anyone!  You have two teeth coming in!  You are nearly 11 months old and finally teeth!  Good job Buddy!  Love You!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

have I told you lately...

I have already had my Thursday night breakdown, I had it at lunchtime. Hopefully I am done.
I am done.

This week seems manic to me; really high high's, and very low lows. 

This week has been frusterating and hopeful, spirit-breaking and triumphant.

Lincoln is "crusing" everywhere.  This means he can walk around our coffee table and sofas and pull up to just about anything.  He has a little push cart that he can go back and forth across the living room with.  I don't help, just hold his shirt for a little stability and so I can catch him so that he doesn't land on the cart.  He is interested in everything.  I have been achingly missing him the last two days while I've been at work.

The is a possiblity there will be some financial relief coming for us in the next few weeks in the form of the Post 9/11 GI Bill.  We're unsure how it will work out but hoping it hits sooner, than later.

I rear-ended a parked car last week when I was leaving work.  Someone did it to me today when I was leaving the bank : (

David has finals this week for this term (5 week long terms) and is only taking one class, rather than 2 for the next 5 weeks, so he'll only be in class 2 nights per week.  I have no idea what I'll do with him home all the time, but I am looking forward to finding out.

Our oven door is broken, has been since Labor Day weekend.  We've been waiting on the landlords to let us know what they want us to do. Subsequently I have not baked any cookies, cakes, pies, breads or dinners in almost a month.  : (

"... you fill my heart with gladness, take away all my sadness,
easy my troubles,  that's what you do.
Have I told you lately that I love you?"

No matter the unknown and the crap, Lincoln has given me a priceless gift to focus on the triumphs and the hope.  To try to see the best when people aren't being nice or treating me the way I think they should, I am reminded to hope they had good intentions.  To think that maybe, just maybe people aren't out to be rude, hurtful and unthinking.  Lincoln helps me to refocus and remember that my family is what's most important.  Our hurt and frusterations can all be wiped clean and we can start again with the hope and triumph of a 10 month old precious babys wonder at the whole world around him. 

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Long Days, Short Years

I've had a rough day, but never in my life have I so easily given up on what frusterates and saddens me than at this point in time. 

My husband is healthy.

My son is healthy.
                 (I am also healthy)
I am in love with my husband.
                 (He likes me alot :)
I obsessivly adore my son.
                  (He loves me, he tells me so with very sloppy kisses!)
My life is good.

Though I may had days where I make bodaciously bad decisions and mistakes, or have frusterating conversations with everyone I talk to and am mis-understood; when we are pockets and wallets and thin...

Nothing is better that you're going home, where you're life has lead you to all along.  i love my life and my family!

These days with work, daycare, and David's school make for Long Days, but these times are going fast and will add up to some very Short Years.  I am trying my best to live and breathe in every moment and take nothing for granted.  Its hard sometimes, but ironically its these days when I'm off my game that remind me to focus in on what and who matter. 

Thursday, September 10, 2009

bReaKdoWn Thursdays

I always had a theory when I used to babysit about Thursdays.  Kids are tired, its been a busy week; parents lack all patience to simply get thier kids through the night.

Welcome to my breakdown Thursdays.

This sucks.

Work was fine.  Had to stay just a few minutes late for a meeting.  Caught in horrible traffic due to rain.  Virginians suck at driving (that is a whole new post that I'll have to write soon).  Just some drizzle and we can only go 5-15 MPH. It's so freakin' frusterating!

I only see David for about 5 minutes between when I walk in the door and he walks out.

Lincoln was so freakin' grumpy tonight!  I had to say 'no' alot.  He is insistent on getting into trouble, trying to eat David's work boots , playing with a lamp that he has almost pulled down on his little head before, yikes!, and generally get into everything.

He went to bed 10 minutes earlier than usual.  That was an hour ago.  He is awake and I am listening to him cry in his crib.  I am not a fan of this situation we find ourselves in.  I dispise spending the barely 2 hours I had with him tonight frusterated, constantly saying 'no' and moving him away from things.  I know I am doing what is best for him. 

He's not crying now.  I love him more that I care about anything else.  I care about every aspect of his day. I breath for the moment I walk in the door at home and he begins to laugh.  I was born to tell him he's loved and give him kissed and be kissed back.  Sometimes rather than kissing my mouth he will kiss bite, my nose. I love that!  I love his hugs, his smile, his giggle, his frustated cry, his tears that I can kiss and wipe away.

I miss my husband.  I miss Lincoln when he is at daycare.  We work all day long, I miss them both all day long!

Thursdays are bearable because Fridays will follow.  I love my husband.  i love my son.  I love who they have helped me become.  I am me, a wife and mother because of them!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

I Believe

I believe in God.

I believe that God knows everything about everything and that we as His people have free will. I know that bad things happen to good people and good things to bad people. I don't think I believe in luck.

I believe in love and family.

I think nothing smells better than my baby, even when its been a couple days since his last bath.

I believe nothing sounds better than my baby laughing, babbling, talking.

I believe nothing feels better than a hug from my husband after a long day.

I think happiness is a word that people throw around to make excuses for selfish and bad decisions. I think there is a slippery slope between making yourself 'happy' and remembering that other people's 'happiness' is affected by how you pursue your's.

I believe Coca Cola tastes way better than water and is my #1 beverage choice!

I believe baking cookies, cakes, muffins and brownies is the best way to warm my home, with smells and the warmth of our oven.

I believe having a perfect pair of jeans can make or break my self-image.

I know I would be lost without my husband, son, mom and girlfriends. They are all the best!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Pregnancy Recap

Our son, Lincoln was born November 26. I'll write another post about how awesome he is. This is the before...

David was diagnosed with Hodgkin's Lymphoma February 26th, 2008. I found out I was pregnant March 25th. It wasn't so much planned, as it was "if it happens, great! if not, no big deal." We aren't sure if the chemo will affect David's fertility in the future and had not to that point tried to get pregnant as we had been married just 7 months. Well it happened!

I spent all of my first trimester VERY sick. I had awful morning sickness. I woke up and was instantly running for the bathroom every morning. Some days I continued to be sick all day. Other days I was able to have a subway sandwich for lunch. Sp.rite, Slurp.ees, saltines, graham crakers, and toast were always around and usually helped. Sometimes, even if I had a good day I would still lose my dinner, that was very frusterating. I never found any rhyme or reason to any of it and lost 15 lbs. I took my prenatal vitamin and a benadryl every night before bed and that helped, or i thought it did. I think having the good night sleep helped!

I was sick until I was 16 or 18 weeks. I was 23 weeks pregant when we had our ultrasound to find out the gender of our baby. I had been convinced by alot of people that our baby was a girl and we have 5 nephews, so we joked that maybe odds had it that we might be having a girl. NOPE! He might as well have sat on a copy machine- this guy was all boy and not shy at all! We had already picked out a name, Lincoln!

We were given a surprise baby shower in Massachusetts by David's relatives when we visited over Labor Day and had another, given by my boss later in September.

The middle of my pregancy was very enjoyable. Lincoln was a very active baby and I never worried or wondered if he was ok in there! I was comfortable most of the time. I had a good time watching him kick the remote control when i set it on my belly or kick my hand if i was in his way.

We moved from an apartment to a townhouse in October and set up the nursery then. By this point I had entered my third trimester. I had heartburn alot but was otherwise doing well. I set a goal for myself, and to have a healthy full-term baby (as much as the 'when' is in my control), for the third weekend in November. We had a baby pool and our family and friends guessed when sweet Lincoln would arrive. For a couple of days I walked the mall and stores, ate spicy foods, and cleaned our house from top to bottom hoping Lincoln would show up.

After a false alarm on a Monday night, and going to work the next day exhausted we went to dinner at Chili's and walked the mall for a bit. My water broke that night! I labored for 24 hours, with pitocin and a epidural, and stalled out at 6 centimeters. I had a c-section.

Lincoln was born November 26th at 9:41 p.m. He weighed 7 lb. 9oz. and was 20.5 inches long.

My recovery wasn't awful, but it wasn't any fun. I took my pain meds on time and made my only goal to take care of my son, anything else could wait. I will elect to have a c-section if I am blessed to get pregnant in the future, based on the advice of my doctors and nurses.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

David Goes to School

David completed his electrical apprenticeship in April 2009. It was a 4 year program sponsored by his employer, and from September to April he went to class 2 nights a week. He finished all 4 years with an A in the class.

Well, before he even completed the apprenticeship he was making plans to go to school again. He is now attending a technical school for a computer sciences degree that emphasizes simulation, modeling and game design. It is an accelerated program that will take two and a half years, taking classes four nights per week! Gah! So far it is going well and academically he is doing well in his classes. It is a big undertaking since he is working 36-40 hour weeks and trying to spend time with his (high-maintenance) wife and adorable infant son.

He was compelled to go this route for many reasons. First, this is what he's always wanted to do- well, don't most guys want to play video games all the time? It is something he considered persuing when he finished his commitment to the N.avy, but went the apprenticeship route. Second, he has his GI Bill from being in the N.avy and serving our country and he wanted to use it. Good thing for us too, as they are increasing the benefits (I'll let you know in October how that is helping us out, if it does). and Third, getting cancer, being treated for it and finding how much working outdoors in the elements affects a person gave David the idea that he may want to find some additional avenues. Also, I think he wants to do something he LOVES to do and while he enjoys electrical work and the accomplishment of working a job and seeing it go from start to finish- he's not sure if that what he wants to do forever.

We're praying that all this school pays off, literally, and he finds himself in a career where he has fun!

Cancer Update

David is cancer FREE!!! He completed the 8 chemo treatments at the end of June '08 and daily radiation treatments for almost a month in August '08. He had a PET scan at that point and has been cancer free! He sees his oncologist every 3 months- and those visits have become quite enjoyable now that we have Lincoln to show about, but more about that in another post. David has lost between 10-15 lbs. since completing chemo, and some of that maybe more that he gained, but he gained because of the fluids they were pumping into him.

Through chemo he never did get sick. He felt exhausted and nauseous but did really well. He did miss work and left early some days, but considering how it could have been he really did great.

Radiation was really a pain in the neck/mouth. His cancer was found in the right side of his neck, so they did concentrated rads on his right side and then did both sides. The side-effects to this irritated David more than the chemo stuff. It dried out his salivary glands which made eating difficult and painful. Also, it stops facial hair growth, so for a while his beard would not grow on his neck, seriously interesting!

David saw his doctor for follow-up visits in mid-Nov. '08, Feb '09, May '09 and Aug '09 and will return in November. We are planning on having a CT scan in Feb to check on things, but so far so good.

We are grateful for David's health and also for Lincoln's and my health as well! We have learned to by happy on the normal boring days and enjoy every moment!

Monday, August 31, 2009

Lincoln - 9 Months

Lincoln is 9 months old and quite the handful. He is speed-crawling, pulling up on everything and and 'cruise' around the coffee table and couches! He can even crawl up the stairs now, of course with Mom or Dad following along. He is a barrel on energy that doesn't stop. He is resisting naps in all forms- not sure what we're going to do about this, the plan is next weekend to see if we create a routine that is exactly like his bedtime routine if he'll rest. Otherwise he only took two, half hour long naps per day this weekend. That just doesn't seem right to me. He goes to bed around 830-9 and i get him up at about 745 to have a bottle and get in the car to head to daycare.

Lincoln can wave hello and byebye and claps to show he's proud of himself.  He babbles all the time. He says HI, Buh-Bye, Da-da, and Ma-ma, but only if he is sad!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Two Stories

The only survivor of a shipwreck was washed up on a small, uninhabited island. He prayed feverishly for God to rescue him. Every day he scanned the horizon for help, but none seemed forthcoming. Exhausted, he eventually managed to build a little hut out of driftwood to protect him from the elements, and to store his few possessions. One day, after scavenging for food, he arrived home to find his little hut in flames, with smoke rolling up to the sky. He felt the worst had happened, and everything was lost. He was stunned with disbelief, grief, and anger. He cried out, "God! How could you do this to me?" Early the next day, he was awakened by the sound of a ship approaching the island! It had come to rescue him! "How did you know I was here?" asked the weary man of his rescuers. "We saw your smoke signal," they replied.

This guy's walkin' down a street when he falls in a hole. The walls are so steep he can't get out. A doctor passes by and the guy shouts up, "Hey you! Can you help me out?" The doctor writes a prescription, throws it down in the hole, and moves on. Then a priest comes along and the guy shouts up, "Father, I'm down in this hole; can you help me out?" The priest writes out a prayer, throws it down in the hole and moves on. Then a friend walks by. "Hey, Joe, it's me. Can ya help me out?" And the friend jumps in the hole. Our guy says, "Are ya stupid? Now we're both down here." The friend says, "Yeah, but I've been down here before and I know the way out.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Lincoln - 8 months

Lincoln is AWESOME. He is really just staying the awesome baby he has been all along. He claps and says YAY! Its very cute. He is eating good and about to move into 12 month pajamas b/c his feet are stretching the 9 mo. ones!!! CRAZY big boy! He is almost crawling, and does a version of the army crawl and rolling to get around and has free reign of the living room. He is just great. I can honestly say I HATE that you are so far away. I think if he were a fussy baby I would wish you were close for help, but he is such a joy I wish you could just hug him more. He is loved and still pretty cuddly, even beginning to sit still long enough to give a hug, but then he's on the move again. He really doesnt sit still. I tried out a babysitter last night; a girl who is 13 that I watched when I was her age. I think she'll be a good help to me if I need to run to Target or the grocery store on nights when David's at school or so we can get out to see a movie now and then. Its good experience for her and she is really looking forward to it. Can't believe he'll already be 8 months on Sunday!

I really can't tell you in words how much of a blast Lincoln is. I've never been around a baby who is so happy, busy, curious and loving. He is great. He sleeps until almost 9 on the weekends!!!!!!!!! I love him even more for that! And talking to you about him makes me miss him... ready to go home now.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Lincoln -7 Months Old

Lincoln is 7 months old and really fun. He has ALOT of energy and personality. He mostly speaks in vowels, no consonants yet, so no "mama, dada, baba" yet. He is sitting up, and rocking on his hands and knees, so its just a matter of when he'll take off and begin crawling. He sleeps from about 930pm-730am or so, but Saturday surprised us and slept until 9am!! It was amazing! He doesn't nap well at daycare, so he usually takes a 45-60 minute nap in the evening between 6 and 7. Lincoln is a blast and he is starting to be a lot of fun, but in the evenings he is pretty high maintenance. Tired, maybe teeth coming in finally, fussy and does not want to be put down. I am really hoping most of it can be blamed on teeth. Looks like a bottom one might be close. He has the best laugh, and giggles a lot when you startle him, or say BOO loud- very cute. I really wish you could hang with Lincoln! He is such a sweet baby. He likes to give kisses and will reach out and hold your face and plant a wet, open mouthed kiss on you! its adorable! He loves to jump and does constantly on your lap while holding him or in his exersaucer and 'johnny jump-up' - if he's been jumping and you pick him up, he'll continue to jump on your hip while being carried around! He is beginning to eat stage 2 foods and in the next month or so, we'll be able to let him try cherrios and other 'finger foods'.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Lincoln -6 Months Old

Lincoln you are 6 months old and the light of our lives. You are almost 20 lb. and 28 inches long and the pediatrician says you are meeting and beating all of your developmental milestones! Still no teeth, but you love to eat. You have oatmeal cereal for breakfast and rice cereal, a vegetable and a fruit for dinner. There is nothing we have found that you don’t like. You chew on every toy, blanket, burp cloth and piece of clothing that comes near you (including mom and dads). You also chew your fingers, hands, wrists, arms and feet when you can wrestle them into your mouth. We have taken to calling you “baby bulimic” because you will stick your fingers and hands into your mouth until you gag. Your nicknames so far are Linc, Linky, Winky and Squishy. Your Uncle Matthew (age 2) says “Bye Winky” when we leave his house.

You have more personality than I imagined could be bundled into such a little body! You like to give kisses and be kissed and recently have begun holding our faces and kissing us! You smile all the time and laugh whenever we tickle you. You are ticklish on you feet, legs, belly, sides and under your chin. You hardly cry, but when you do it gets your point across quickly. It is usually because you are not being held, are on the floor by yourself or are hungry, tired or dirty- you never cry without a reason. You do not like to be left in a room alone while playing. You like to ride in the car and talk up a storm on the way to and from daycare everyday.

You are becoming increasingly mobile, rolling over and pivoting to get to toys or whatever you want. We can not just leave you on the floor anymore because you find your way to a wall or into the coffee table. When you get the coffee table you kick it and make the candles inside rattle so we know you’re there. You like your exersaucer and jumper, but not for very long.

You are a great traveler and have been to Colorado and Massachusetts already! You sleep a lot on plane rides and usually no one knows you’re there! You are very good natured and flexible, until you’re late getting a meal and that’s a deal breaker for you. You like all people and have yet to meet a stranger; you even kissed your 2nd cousin Sierra on the mouth the moment you met her! You were good in Colorado, but seemed to have some trouble adjusting to the time change, dry air or altitude or all of them. We blamed it on you being jet lagged and by half way through the second day you were back to yourself. In Massachusetts you were totally were yourself for the whole trip, so maybe staying in the same time and climate zone helps.

You usually sleep from 10-7 in you crib and still take 2-4 naps daily; more on the weekends since its quieter at home than at daycare. You have been sleeping through the night for the last month! When you sleep in your crib you move around a lot and when we go in to get you in the morning you are never in the same spot or laying in the same direction as when we laid you down. When napping at home, mom still holds you and the only way you sleep is in the infant hold you’ve always loved. You still put your hand inside mom’s shirt and hold her shoulder until you fall asleep. Before you fall sleep you use your free hand to push mom’s face around, looking at you and looking away and back again. You also put your fingers in our mouths and laugh if we pretend to chew on them. You like to rub your hair on your head while you drink a bottle and will pet mommy’s but you don’t ever pull.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Can't believe Lincoln going to be 6 months old at the end of the month!!! CRAZY! He is holding his bottle, scooting some (though, I try to discourage this, as I don't really want him crawling and walking this soon!!!), eating oatment, fruits and veggies (and LOVES them all), and says AH to every single bite!!! He is sleeping through the night some and is still a very happy baby.

Edited to add (Taken from emailed to my mother-in-law):
Lincoln was up 4 or 5 times last night. We are considering putting him in a box and sending him to you or selling him on the black market. I bet a cute baby boy gets a good price! Not really, I guess we'll keep him, but I wish I knew why it is he didnt want to sleep. We had a streak of 7 days in a row sleeping through the night... until this week!!! He's such a punk! Gotta get some work done. If you get a package on your porch with holes in it, you might wanna open it!

I am glad the email made you laugh. THat was actually the point. We let him cry for more that a half hour at different points through the night while going to check on him and give him his paci last night. I think for now he's just more stubborn than I would;ve thought and we're going to have to keep doing what we're doing. I am ok for letting him cry, I just want all of us to get a good nights sleep. Hopefully this is all related to a growth spurt or those bottom teeth moving in some, i dunno. Thanks for the support and advice. I'll send you a tracking number if I put him in the mail!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

ABCs of Me

A - Age? 25
B - Bed Size? Queen
C - Chore You Hate? Cleaning a toilet
D - Dogs Name? No dogs, as people say about me, "Erin is not a dog person."
E - Essential Start Your Day Item? a smile from Lincoln
F - Favorite Color? blue and summer green
G - Gold Or Silver? silver and white gold
H - Height? 5 ft 3 and a half!
I - Instruments You Play? played violin and toy with the piano. but i'd rather sing
J - Job Title? receptionist. Lincoln's mom. David's wife.
K - Kid(s)? Lincoln Oliver 11.26.08
L - Living Arrangements? Townhome with my hubby and son.
M - Mom's Name? Lori Christine
N - Nicknames? Erin, Ewin, E, Worm (when I was little cause i wiggle)
O - Overnight hospital stay other than birth? galbladder in Feb '09- 4 nights in there :(
P - Pet Peeve? chewing in my ear, talking louder than needed, getting something for one's self without checking with others around you, people who are competitive about stuff that doesnt matter... hmm, i think i have lots of pet peeves.
Q - Quote From A Movie? "Nobody puts baby in a corner." Johnny Castle/Patrick Swazey in Dirty Dancing
R - Right Or Left Handed? Right
S - Siblings? 3 Brothers, Nathan, Zack and lil Matthew! Sister and brother in law
T - Time You Wake Up? whenever Lincoln gets up
U - Underwear? never go with out it!
V - Vegetable You Dislike? i have lots that i refuse to try b/c i hear they're gross- spinach, brussel sprouts, i know i dont like sweet potatoes.
W - Ways You Run Late? cause i'd rather sleep. cause i forget how long it takes to get out the door w/ Lincoln (diaper bag, bottles, etc.)
X - X-Rays You've Had? arms, elbows, legs/kness, stomach, chest,... i am accident prone- prob. everything!
Y - Yummy Food You Make? Everything! j/k I love to bake all kinds of cookies, brownies, cakes. My friends would reccomend brownie thingys i'd think! davis is the cook and i am the baker.
Z - Zoo Favorites? Elephants. i once feel running to the elephant exibit... accident prone

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Lincoln -4 Months

Lincoln is now 4 months old. At his check-up on March 20th he was 15 lbs. 5 oz. and 26 inches. He is in the 75th or 80th percentile- definitely long for his age! He has begun eating cereal in the evenings and LOVES it. We'll be trying out veggies beginning on Saturday! He is a very wiggly dude, loves to see whatever you're doing, is rolling over (sometimes) and has graduated from the infant car seat to a rear-facing convertible seat. CRAZY how fast that's all happening!

David and I are good. Just working and hanging with Lincoln, looking forward to getting out a lot more now that the weather is warmer around here. David's apprenticeship classes wrap up this month and he'll be taking the Journeyman's test soon.

In March we flew to Colorado to visit family out there. Lincoln was a great traveler on the plane, but the time change and dry air/altitude made him a bit of a grump when we got there.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Registering for Your Baby

We registered for just our bedding at JCPenney and everything else at Babies R Us. We got most of our necessities.

I didn't register for any clothes, blankets or bibs- You will get so many. I didn't register for bottles b/c sometimes babies have preferences, but we've used the Evenflo Purely Comfi and never had any problems. (David washes bottles and if cost were no object i think we'd use playtex drop-ins so there wasn't so much washing going on) I registered for one set of towels and wash clothes and got plenty others. If you don't get enough of these you should get some gift cards. I will say that his most used blankets are one that are MY favorites and i got them on sale usually.
Water-proof crib mattress pad.
Lap pads(We change him on these, we don't have a changing table)
Gerber Cloth Diapers (for burp cloths)
Extra sheets for crib and/or pack n play
Graco iMonitor Vibe- LOVE IT
Fisher Price Bouncer- Love it, He sits in it while i shower and plays with the toys and coos.
Boppy floor mat- he is beginning to really like this.
Gas drops- we've used these since he was 1 week old. They do make a difference.

I got our second carseat base from craigslist and our travel swing for a consignment store.
If there are things you don't receive like that, in my experience 2nd hand has been just fine! We've also found that Target brands are = to anything else, so when we're out of the stuff people bought us we'll get target soaps and lotions. We're already strictly using Target formula. And target makes baby tylenol too.

Oh, and put diapers on your registry so people know what you'll be using. I only got one package of diapers pre-Lincoln. I did start buying diapers early tho and that has helped alot. And i watch for diaper/wipe sales and coupons. Diaper coupons usually come out the 1st Sunday of the month. If you do pre-buy diapers, only get a couple Newborns, 4-5 of each size going up- they grow fast! The big boxes are a good buy, especially if you have a coupon (BRU has $5 off this week). Oh and you can get huge boxes of wipes at BJs/Sams club and they're a good buy too. We go through a package of diapers & refill of wipes per week.

Oh, babies get baby acne- i've been able to keep lincoln from getting it by putting vasaline lip stuff on it. keeping milk from sitting of his face makes a difference too.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Mama Survey

1. WAS YOUR FIRST EVER PREGNANCY PLANNED? Kinda, when faced w/ chemo and the possibility of never having a child we tried and got pregnant on the first try! holy crap! (side note, cancer is gone!)

2. WERE YOU MARRIED AT THE TIME? Yes, for like 9 months.

3. WHAT WERE YOUR REACTIONS? overwhelmed, excited, happy!


5. HOW DID YOU FIND OUT YOU WERE PREGNANT? took a pregnancy test after a missed period

6. WHO DID YOU TELL FIRST? David (the hubby), my mom and david's family, work, Michelle, Nats & Em

7. HOW DID YOU TELL PEOPLE? well I usually communicate by speaking. in person or over the phone

8.DID YOU WANT TO FIND OUT THE SEX? we thought that there were enough unknowns last year. no surprises

9. DUE DATE? December 1, 2008

10. DID YOU HAVE MORNING SICKNESS? Yes! Until almost 16 weeks and I lost 15 lbs!

11. WHAT DID YOU CRAVE? slurpees, grape juice, Life cereal, fruit, Subway sandwiches,

12. WHO/WHAT IRRITATED YOU THE MOST? waiting, worrying about David's stuff and our money...

13. WHAT WAS YOUR CHILD'S SEX? He's a boy!

14. DID YOU WISH YOU HAD THE OPPOSITE SEX OF WHAT YOU WERE GETTING? We have 5 nephews and thought it might be cool to have a girl; but couldn't be happier w/ our boy!


16. DID YOU HAVE A BABY SHOWER? yes.. one in Massachusetts and one here in Virginia! Both were amazing! Our family and friends were incredible generous!

17. WAS IT A SURPRISE OR DID YOU KNOW? The MA one was supposed to be a suprise, but was blow as soon as we arrived in MA. I knew about the VA one, but Nancy kept alot of specifics a surprise

18. DID YOU HAVE ANY COMPLICATIONS DURING YOUR PREGNANCY? low weight gain for me, but that never affected the baby

19. WHERE DID YOU GIVE BIRTH? Virginia Beach General Hospital





24. DID YOU TAKE MEDICINE TO EASE THE PAIN? The epidural was the best thing ever, but I never could move my lower half after I got it! I really appreciated the pain meds.


28. WHEN WAS YOUR CHILD ACTUALLY BORN? Novemeber 26, 2008 at 9:40p.m. Next year his bday will be one Thanksgiving!

30. WHAT DID YOU NAME HIM/HER? Lincoln Oliver Lucier 31. HOW OLD IS YOUR FIRST BORN TODAY? 11 weeks today

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

25 Random Things About Me

25 Things: Random? I dunno.
1. I believe in God and rely on His presence in the craziness of my life. I seek comfort in knowing that he is our ABBA Father and knows every step and breath we take.

2. I used to be an exaggerator. I find no use in wasting my time with that anymore. It’s either a big deal or its not. And people will either care, or they won’t.

3. I think 2007 was the last year that will ever be all about me. I married the love of my life and rode the Griffin (a roller coaster) 8 times (6 in one day)!

4. I think 2008 was the year I grew up, became an adult and decided that the responsibility for what I do and what happens to me lies only with me.

5. I hope that 2009 is a year when I can focus on my life with my son and husband and we can really enjoy each other and our friends and families.

6. I hope that the recession doesn’t dismantle my hopes for 2009.

7. I hate confrontation, but have decided that nothing is worth me taking a back seat to someone else’s happiness. I deserve to be happy too.

8. I never had goals that amounted to being anymore than someone’s mom.

9. I found out why I was born on 11-26-2008. I was always meant to be Lincoln’s mom!

10. I spent my 6 weeks of maternity leave holding my baby and watching One Tree Hill and West Wing re-runs. I told Lincoln I was lowering his IQ with OTH and upping it with WW. I love to sit at home and be a complete bum. I no longer care if anything is clean or complete- I just refuse to waste a moment with my son

11. I hardly make a decision or say anything without David’s input- What we do affects one another.

12. I can word-for-word repeat the dialog for Pretty Woman, Dirty Dancing and The Notebook. I am proud of this! What movie will be next?

13. I love to sing, but only for me, David and Lincoln now. I am hoping Lincoln likes John Mayer.

14. Last year on the John Mayer cruise I saw John Mayer in the “Borat thong”. Not something I hope to see again. I prefer John fully clothed and singing/playing guitar. (Embarrassment= deleting pictures you wish you’d never taken!)

15. I LOVE my 2004 Corolla and the only reason I will ever change is to get the 09 with volume controls in the steering wheel.

16. I love to drive long distances, including Tennessee and Massachusetts.

17. I like to listen to my music way too loud when driving long distance. This led to 3 speeding tickets in 2002 and 2003. Ooops!

18. I thought Lincoln might’ve been a girl, only because we have 5 nephews and everyone convinced me. There was no mistaking my son at our ultrasound- it was like he was sitting on a copy machine.

19. I have taken well over 1000 pictures of Lincoln in the 10 weeks he been alive but, I have yet to have any pro-pics done. 20. I have read the Harry Potter series 3 times. But didn’t see a movie in the theatre until The Prisoner of Azkaban. Now I always count down until they come out.

21. I have a blankie. It was retired in April of 2007. Until then I took it to summer camp, vacations, even a semester of college. My mom was convinced I’d walk down the aisle with it. I have since gotten it out- it’s not that same. Now I cuddle my son.

22. I sucked my thumb- I don’t remember when I stopped but it wasn’t until probably middle school. I never need braces because of it.

23. I am a Navy brat but have only lived in 6 states. 7 if you include Tennessee for a semester.

24. I loved my visit to Seattle last year and am hoping to get back this year. Go Seahawks!

25. CANCER SUCKS but never would anything have made it clearer to me that nothing is more important than making David (and now Lincoln) the #1 priorities in my life and thanking God for them every single day. David is the strongest person I have ever met and we are committed to kicking cancer’s butt if it ever decided to mess with us again. Lincoln is a lucky little boy to have a daddy who fought to get better to be there for him. I am blessed to have them both!

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Myspace Note - Thank you,

I really I have wanted to say THANK YOU to everyone for your interest, support, and of course sweet comments since Lincoln was born. I cannot believe it has been two months! I really fell off the planet while I was staying at home- trying to soak up every second of hanging out and loving being Lincoln’s mom. Now that I am back to work and he’s at daycare, we’re on a schedule and I’ve been able to keep up with email, Myspace, Facebook, etc. much better.

I want to brag and tell you how great Lincoln is. We are totally spoiled and have the most laid back, easy-going, and happy baby I have ever seen! I can tell you he gets all that from his dad! He has been a super easy baby, sleeping enough to keep us all sane and adjusting well to daycare. He is smiling a lot now and just generally making us feel like he’s happy to see us. He really is the sweetest, cuddliest and happy baby I have ever experienced! David is already joking that our next child definitely won’t be this easy since we hit the jackpot with Lincoln.

Thank you for caring! We love you all!

Friday, January 23, 2009

Lincoln- 8 Weeks

Lincoln is 8 weeks old now and very smiley. At first Lincoln was only smiling at us, but has become a social smiler and very happy baby! This week he caught his first cold at the babysitters but has been a trooper. He even slept 5 hours last night! He is a very easy-going guy, much like his dad, and a great snuggler. We love him to pieces and he is the best thing we ever did!

David and I are doing well. Work is slow in the construction trade right now, as I am sure you all know. We are just hoping it turns around soon, and our employer is doing everything he can to find work to keep the guys busy. David is not working full time hours right now, but it does give him extra time to spend with Lincoln.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Lincoln - 6 Weeks

Lincoln is doing great. He had his "two month" appointment, he is 7 weeks tomorrow. He received two shots and an oral vaccine. He weighs 11 lb. 5 oz. (50th percentile) and is 23 inches long (75th percentile). The doctor had no concerns, just commenting on his cool name, great temperament, muscle strength (thanks, David) and overall cuteness!!

He doesn't have to be seen again until he is 4 months old- and will receive more shots then. He did ok with the shots, I did give him Tylenol and had a bottle ready for him when they were done. He slept and ate a lot last night, kind of hibernating I think. David and I are doing great. We really enjoy all of our time with Lincoln. David is still working out with Lincoln all the time. He is always working with Lincoln to hold his head up and hold toys. I think David will find great relief with Lincoln will hold his bottle on his own- I however will enjoy Lincoln being my little baby boy for however long. With David's encouragement Lincoln rolled over one way on Saturday from his belly to his back. He is still smiling quite a bit.

Lincoln did start daycare with "trial" half days last Friday and yesterday. He has done very well. Today is his first whole day, so we'll see. It was very, VERY HARD for me to let him go, but we have to do it and he's going to do just fine. For now he's in an in-home daycare, and she keeps 4 other children, but he's the only infant and gets lots of attention. I think down the road we'll get him into something more structured, but we'll see.