Thursday, October 30, 2008

it's that time again...

It's that time again when the political scene can get mean and ugly. I really don't like this part of the political world and have a hard time with the way some candidates treat each other...up front or passive aggressively. In the end...each of these individuals is a person...a dad or a mom, a son or daughter, a friend to someone, a sibling, a person. While I don't agree with everyone's beliefs or values, I do know we are all people and should be given what Christ gave to us. Grace and love. Of course, we don't DESERVE it,but because of Jesus we all have a chance for this.

That said... we do have to choose and come November 4th we will have to make our choice for our next President, senators, congress men & women, representatives, and even a few others... As I have gotten older these choices have become more and more important to me. Having kids makes me really plug into what is happening in their world. Being a follower of Jesus makes me feel accountable for how I vote and what I represent in the voting booth on election day. I hope everyone makes a conscious effort to evaluate the men and women running this year.

I guess for me... and feel free to disagree, but these are a few stands I take and hope to represent when I vote on Tuesday.
I believe every baby is a gift from God and should be given a chance at life. I believe a baby is a human with living rights starting at conception. I believe there are alternatives for abortion.
I believe God intended for marriage to be between a man and a woman, in the beginning he created Adam and Eve and He said it was very good.
I believe education is important for every child and I think parents should be able to influence what direction schools are going. I believe teachers should have some accountability. (and I WAS a teacher before I had kids!)

Okay, these are my main issues. Yes, I care about health care, the economy, and foreign policy. But, I really don't care how well someone can fix our economy if they are willing to let innocent babies die everyday. I will stand before God someday and answer to Him and in my heart that just feels right to me.

So, other then the fact that I must say I can not believe I'm bold enough to blog on this topic because I HATE confrontation and honestly really hope nobody comments on this, but I also want to say that despite all the different views I am praying for every candidate this year. Now I am probably praying for a victory for some and not others :) But, I am praying for their families, their hearts, their relationship with God or lack of, their ability to be good leaders, and their influence on the American people. I hope each candidate gets the grace and love they need this election season.

I hope you all really look into what is behind all the candidates and make a well informed decision on November 4th! There are many families counting on you!! Be sure to VOTE!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

having boys means...

As I've attempted this child rearing thing for the last 4 1/2 years now I've come to realize a few things. Even more so raising boys. This is what I'm finding having boys means...

1.) my living room isn't really for sitting in, unless you are sitting to watch "the game" from the "bleachers". The center of our room is really the football field or soccer field or baseball field. Please excuse the books being used for bases or the laundry baskets used for soccer goals when you come to my house.
2.) My doorways are more then a space to allow you to walk through from one room to another. They are clearly for climbing up and hanging between. Who knew you could "walk" up a doorway and hang out at the top? Apparently the view is better up there? :)
3.) The word "fart" is really a regular part of any person's daily vocabulary. The action itself is even more so regular. I can not believe I am actually writing about farting, apparently my manners perspective has been slightly effected from living with 3 boys. Hansen boys that is.
4.) Anything not pink, purple, or yellow may be referred to us "cool" and only "cool". "Pretty" and "beautiful" are only for pink, purple, and yellow items. Don't mix them up or you will be corrected in this house. Try to be "cool", not "pretty".
5.) Eating should happen every 2 hours. Not at meal times either. And, don't expect to sit through a meal. One must eat two bites, go make a play on the "football field" and then return for another couple bites during "half-time".
6.) When you watch sports, hands must be in the pants. Age doesn't seem to matter. Enough said. I still can't figure this one out? Again, my manners perspective is a bit off since living with 3 boys. I think I just wrote about hands in the pants?
7.) Garages are not for vehicles, but for sports items. I have found I can never have too many tubs for the countless balls, gloves, golf sets, bikes, baseball gear, football gear, buckets, shovels, and trucks that we can not live without. Some gloves are for catchers and some for 1st base players and some for out fielders...who knew you needed such a variety?
8.) Rugs should not be walked on in our home. They are full of crocodiles, alligators, and dragons. Only attempt with your Pirate ship full of mateys.
9.) Stools are not for sitting on, but for attempting your "flying" abilities from one couch, er I mean, one mountain to another.
10.) And, last but not least... washers and dryers are garbage trucks really. Fill them with whatever "garbage" you find in the house and drive away. If you want to wash at my house, make sure you empty the garbage first :)

So, you see... I'm learning much more then I thought possible as I raise three boys :) (yes, I said three) (-:

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Seriously, 10 months already!?!?

just give me the camera Mom!!

Okay, here's 1 smile!

A tickle session from Jaxon! he's got this great growly laugh when he's really going...

It is amazing how fast Austin's baby stages are going. Even more faster then Jaxon's did. I suppose when you are following a 4 year old around as well and splitting time between the two of them it does move by at a slighter different pace then when you have just the one. I find myself holding Ausitn longer at night after he falls asleep, letting him hang out on my hip as much as he wants to, and stretching out our nursing moments just to hold onto today a bit more...or live in today so to say. I realize after having Jaxon, that Austin soon will want to lay by himself in a big boy bed, get down and walk verses being held, and prefer a cup over snuggeling nursing time with mom. It's a great reminder that "these times too shall pass". We so often refer to that phrase when times are tough, stressful, or difficult at the moment. But it is true for great moments too. These times shall pass and soon I will look back fondly at these moments. Austin has been oodles of fun lately... smiling and laughing more at us, getting engaged with some fun activities, and cruising everywhere. He is standing by himself now and loves to cruise along furniture. Jaxon loves to get him laughing and nobody can do it better then big brother Jaxon!! Two boys... what fun! Here are Austin's 10 month old pictures...he wasn't really in the mood to take pics that day. The camera has become an attractive thing to him lately that he'd much rather just hold himself, not have it teased in front of him! He was mad each time I tried to take a picture and I wouldn't let him have it! Stinker! ya go babe...10 months and counting.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Fall Happenings...

Lots of fall activities in the last week! This post may get long, as I have 3 big things to share! The above picture is from the apple Orchards last week. Dave's sis, Heidi, and her two girls, and the boys and I headed over to the Denver Apple Orchard. It's perfect for kids our ages. They let you pick your own apples, it's not too big, and it's 20 minutes away! It was really pretty out there and we had fun getting apples together. These four hardly sit still long enough to snap a photo...the above is as close as I could get! We love having all our kids cousins so close! There is nothing better then a nice fall afternoon in Iowa spent at an apple orchard.

Austin liked eating apples when we weren't looking :)

Jaxon insisted he was strong enough to carry both buckets!

Next up is...Pumpkin Farm with Jaxon's Preschool class! I got to go along to the pumpkin farm with Jaxon and his preschool class. It was really neat to see him relate amongst his peers and hang out with his old buddy, Gabe. They are in the same class and they just love each other. It is really cool to see your children develop relationships with their peers and find friendship with one another. Jaxon had a blast and talked about it all night at dinner. It was weird to be a "parent chaperone/volunteer" with the preschool. I remeber being the teacher and it was odd to have switched roles in just a few short years. His teachers are great and they did a nice job organizing a fun day for the kids!

I'm not sure which Jaxon was more excited for...the pumpkin farm or the BUS RIDE! he was pumped even more when he saw it was BLUE!! Talk about easy pleasing!

Jaxon and good buddy Gabe

And, last but not least... the BARN DANCE!!!

That's right...I said Barn Dance! There was a fundraiser barn dance & auction for a camp that many of the Longfellow kids attend in the summer. (Longfellow is where Dave used to coach soccer until the school closed this year) The camp is for under resourced kids to come and just be a kid. Forget the tough things going on at home and just enjoy their childhood a bit on this ranch! The camp offers great leaders/councelors/programs to teach, love, and nurture these children. The kids love it and I'm happy we could be a part of the cowboy night! The Barn Dance was at a beautiful ranch here in the Cedar VAlley. It was really amazing! Above is my friend Kris and below with Dave is her hubby, Mark.. We all went together with some other friends from church. It was quite the boot scooting night! We didn't mess around dressing for the part either!! (-:

Sunday, October 5, 2008

8 days apart

Addelyn and Austin... 9 months old and only 8 days apart. I still remember Kris telling us she was pregnant...and I remember telling Dave we were having another baby with Kris sitting on the couch with us! The Hoskinson's lived with us during this time and it was pretty fun to have two preggo's in the house for a couple months! We couldn't help but take some pictures of the two babes together! Of course getting them to look at the same time and smile was another story!?!?

Mom & Dad need breaks too!

We have been adjusting to our fall schedule as it is slowing down tremendously after our month or so intense busy time at DTI. This is the first year both Dave and I have been employed by the same company and we did not predict the toll that would take on us as we battled through the busiest time of year co-workers and as parents. End of July through end of August or so is DTI's "crunch" time of year and we both put in a lot of extra hours to keep up. Usually, we could juggle or hand off some shared duties around the house while one or the other is unusually busy. This time...well, lets just say we didn't invite a lot of visitors over for dinner much since the kitchen was rarely cleaned! I finally feel like we are recapturing control of the house and our sleeping time! Whew! After an end to our busy summer we both made plans for some trips with our friends :)
For me, this meant a day trip with the girls. For Dave, this meant a weekend long trip with the guys. Apparently he needs a little more time away to recuperate...or he just can't handle having mom gone for more then a day with the kids by himself :) To be honest, 1 day away is plenty for me...I miss my kids by evening anyways! Some girlfriends and I headed to DesMoines for the day. It was a great day to spend with the girls doing not much of anything...some shopping, some eating, some chatting, some sitting. It was a great day! I had saved up some birthday money and even did a little spending on...myself! I usually buy for my kids when I spend and it was fun to shop for myself a bit. A little selfish of me, but I enjoyed it for the day :-) I am a woman who needs some time to just connect with the girls (especially when I live with a house full of boys!) and this day trip was just what my body and soul needed! Thanks girls!
Dave headed to Nashville and on the way down the guys stopped in St Loius for a Cardinals game. They went to the Vikings game in Nashville and stayed at a friend's place. From what I've heard...they had a great time too. Dave was tired when he returned, but ready to plunge back into normal life after he got back. A perfect get away for the both of us! We both feel so blessed to have such great friends to do special things like this with. We're already thinking of next years location for our day (or weekend) away! Whoo-hoo!