Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Big Boy Reddin

I just wanted to post these cute pictures of Reddin having his last bottle. This was on New Year's Eve night. Redd REALLY loved the bottle, and I wasn't sure how it was going to be trying to break him of it. Mattie really didn't care too much about her bottle by the time she was one year old, but Reddin really enjoyed cuddle time with his bottle before his naps. My goal with both kids was to have them broken of the bottle within a week of them turning one. It was a cinch with Mo, but I was nervous about Redd. Plus, I really was scared I would be giving up cuddle time, with him giving up the bottle. I stuck with my goal though, and he was fine. I sat down with him, knowing it would be his last bottle, and I fully enjoyed watching him and contemplating the first year of his life. I couldn't believe how fast it had flown by. I am happy to report that my little guy still loves cuddle time, although its with a sippy cup now!

Christmas 2009

I know, I am SO late on posting this, but I thought better late than never! We spent Christmas Eve at the Berger's house for their annual party.
We had some yummy food and watched the children act out the Christmas story/Nativity. Mattie chose to be an angel. (I think there has only been one year where she was something else!) Reddin wasn't in the play this year, but he sure tried to be!
(I love his "cheese" face, here with my sister Stephanie!)

After the party we headed over to my sister's house to do presents with her family, my brother's family and Grandma. It was fun watching Reddin and Lochlan try to figure out the whole present thing. Of course Mattie was quick to lend a hand!
(Christmas jammies for Momo and Redman!)

At home, Matt and Mattie put out food for the reindeer and left cookies for Santa on a super cute plate my sister made.
Matt and I actually went to bed pretty much after the kids, and that was a first! Usually we are up for hours wrapping, but this year I made us wrap a couple of weeks before hand. It was lovely, especially since we knew we would be waking early to do presents before Matt headed off to work.Yes, he had to work on Christmas and was gone for 6 days! It was stinky, but we were grateful to have him home to celebrate Christmas morning with us. The kiddos loved their presents and it was so much fun watching their excitement.
Matt left for work, but not before playing a few games with Mo! Grandma and I took over after he left.

That evening we headed over to my sister's for Christmas dinner. Growing up, I spent many Christmases in Biloxi, MS at my grandparents home. We always had a roast on Christmas Day and then on Boxing Day we had an amazing meal of seafood! We decided to skip the roast and just get to the good stuff this year! We had barbecued shrimp (my grandfather's recipe), boiled shrimp and potatoes, salad, french bread and grilled lobster tail! It was all so yummy. Mattie does not care for seafood at this time in her life and I hoping she grows out of that. Reddin on the other hand really enjoyed the seafood! (He also likes spicy food, and it just melts my heart to see some of my blood in that boy!) We did the traditional English Christmas crackers and wore our silly hats, just like my Gma always made us do.
It was very sad not having Matt home for all of our festivities, but we are happy he at least has a job in this crazy day in age! Christmas was great, regardless!

Sunday, January 31, 2010

Truly Humbled

I feel like I need to get my feelings down about this weekend, while they are still fresh in my mind. I received a call from a member of my Stake Presidency this week. He told me that he needed to meet with Matt and I before stake conference was to take place. I told him Matt would be back in town on Friday night, and then I tried to get out of him which one of us the meeting would be about. Of course he wouldn't tell me. I immediately began to feel worried and anxious. I kept telling myself that the calling could be for Matt, but deep down I think that I knew it was going to be for me.

Pres. Rivoli came to our home on Friday night and after some chit chatting, turned to Matt and said, "Matt we would like to extend a calling... to your wife." My heart was pounding, as he told me that my name had been submitted to be called as the 1st counselor in the Stake Young Women's presidency. My first thought was, "Who on earth would submit my name? It must be somebody I know." These are the things I asked Pres. Rivoli, and he told me that she didn't know me and it was a very interesting story at how she came to choose me. This is the part that has been extremely humbling for me.

(I contemplated sharing the story in our blog, but I have decided not to. I am more than happy to share it, just ask, but have decided against actually posting the story.)

For a long time I have had a strong testimony that the Lord personally knows us and our needs, but sometimes I just go along in life and forget. The way I came to receive this calling was once again a testament to my knowledge of having a Heavenly Father that knows me personally! I can think of a TON of women in my stake who would be amazing at this calling. I am humbled to know that the Lord wants me to serve the YW of my stake at this time in my life. I feel so inadequate. I feel like I have SO much more to learn and that I am SO imperfect. With those things being said, I will say this, I have SUCH a love for the YWs program. I don't even know how to put into words the love I have for the young women of my ward, who I have been serving for the last couple of years. I love these girls as if they were my own, and I am overjoyed at the prospect of having that love grow for the young women of my stake. I grew up in the church and I remember how much the YWs program and my leaders meant to me as a teenager. I know the struggles that face these girls at this time in their lives, and I pray for them as they step up to the advisory. I have a strong testimony that there is a YM/YWs program in place in the church because it is what we need to help prepare us for the world, as we become adults.

I will most definitely miss the time I got to spend with "my girls" each week, it was a huge blessing in my life. They made me feel so young! I want them to know how much I love each of them and that they can still turn to me if they ever need anything. I am saddened at the thought of not being there in the YW's room each week along side Janet and Kendra. You ladies have been two of my best friends and I will ALWAYS remember how much fun we had being the "adults"! The YW are so blessed to have you both, and I hope they know how much you love them. I am excited to be working with the new stake YWs presidency. I have already spoken with the new president a few times and she seems wonderful. I pray that I will be able to do this calling well and not let my Father in Heaven down. I am grateful for this opportunity to serve and as I said before, truly humbled.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Approaching 30...

Yes, I am quickly approaching the next decade of my life and let me tell you I have been dreading it for YEARS. I don't know why the thought of turning 30 is such a terrible thing for me, but it is. Maybe it is because I still feel like a 24 year old, or maybe it is because I have loved my 20s and don't want to leave them, or maybe its because I just don't ever want to get old! For the last 2 years I have told Matthew that we are going to need to do something fun for my 30th, so that I won't be depressed. He saved a week of vacation to use just for me, thinking that we could possibly go some place super fun or exotic. But alas, we have the means of transportation and no money. Flying for free is great, but when there is no money to do anything once you get there, it kind of defeats the purpose! Anyway, we were however able to get a 3 day/2 night cruise booked to the Bahamas for very inexpensive. I have never been on a cruise, so I am very excited about it. Plus being able to spend some time with Matt without our kiddos will be great fun too! And this brings me to the point of this post...

I am about to turn 30, my baby just turned one and I am still carrying around extra weight. I would like to lose some more of this extra weight before the cruise, so that I can feel good about myself and enjoy it even more. I actually don't have a ton to lose
weight wise, but the inches around the middle need to be worked on. It is not a huge secret that I have struggled with self-image issues for a majority of my life and it is an ongoing battle for me still. Yes it is true that I grew up being SUPER skinny, and yes I know that I am not fat now, but I am however still not able to get into most of my pre-pregnancy clothes, which makes me feel not so great about myself. Will most of you read this and think that I am crazy? Probably. But, I thought that by me posting my goal to start a workout routine, it would keep me motivated to stay on it!

This was me when I was 23 years old and got engaged to Matt.
I weighed 120 lbs and I am 5'11. The sad thing is that I use to cry all of the time about how fat I was. (Scary, huh?) Matt put up with a lot! I got pregnant 9 months into our marriage and boy did I enjoy it! I ate EVERYTHING in sight. Seriously I never stopped eating for those 9 months! Everyone told me that I was so skinny and it would be so easy to lose the baby weight. I of course, never really having worked out in my life, believed them. I gained close to 60 lbs. This is a picture of me the morning I went in for my induction to have Mattie.
(My sister find this picture funny and lovingly refers to it as "fat Heather"!)

Losing the baby weight after Mattie was a very hard thing for me. I expected it to just melt off, and let me tell you, it didn't! I became very depressed and consumed with trying to get my old body back. I joined a gym and hired a trainer to teach me how to work-out. I would go to the gym 4 or 5 days a week and yes, starve myself. It lead to a very unhappy Heather, which made for a very unhappy marriage. Finally, when Mattie was about a 18 months old, I acknowledged how unhappy I was (with the help of a very dear friend) and sought help. (My family did try to help me and have interventions, but I just wouldn't face the truth.)
Counseling changed my life! I was able to address my demons and recognize that I had an eating disorder. Matthew was a very patient and loving spouse through out it all, and I am so grateful to have him for eternity.

After finishing counseling, I was able to move on, but not without struggles and fighting. We decided it was time for another baby. It took us almost a year to get pregnant and this time I started out at 130 lbs, a much healthier weight.
I knew that I would be at risk for going through the depression and old eating disorder habits again. I tried to be a little more strict this pregnancy, but still ended up gaining 40 lbs. This was me the morning of my induction for Reddin.
I am happy to say that the obsession with losing weight and feeling crappy about myself ALL of the time never came. Yes there have been many times in the past year where I have looked at my body in the mirror and longed for my 130 lb frame, but I was never consumed by it. I knew that I was able to lose it once, and that I would be able to do it again. So the problem is my baby is one now and I have not gotten into a great exercise routine! I thought for sure I would lose it all by the time Reddin was a year old, but I just haven't worked at it. I have exercised here and there some, but never really "worked" at it. I do know what I need to do, I just haven't had the motivation... until now! Hello I am turning 30 next month and going on a cruise! I want to feel some what good in a bathing suit! Matt is terrible and doesn't help the situation at all, constantly telling me how much he loves my body how it is. Geesh what a guy!

So here it is, my post-year old baby body...

I think that this will motivate me to actually start working at it! Do I think that I will be in the best shape of my life by February 8th? No way! I do however hope to feel a little better about myself, so that I can truly enjoy my cruise with the hubby and embrace turning 30!!!

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Happy 1st Birthday

On Saturday, Dec. 19th, we had a birthday party for Reddin, along with his cousin Lochlan and buddy Drew Smith. All 3 boys were born in December, with in a couple of weeks of each other. Stephanie and I started planning the boys party a while ago, and then thought it would be lots of fun to invite the Smiths to join in!

On Saturday morning we woke up to find it very windy and cold. We were having the party at a park on the river over on beachside, which meant more windy and cold than inland. We had to forgo some of our decorations because it was just too windy.

We had a BBQ and asked our guests to bring a side dish instead of presents. The food was yummy, and we really appreciate all those that were able to make it to the party!

Reddin was not the happy little guy he normally is, at the party. I think that the cold wind was getting to him. It just goes to show that he is a true FL boy, and loves the heat!

It was a little harder for me to truly enjoy his party, as much as would have if little Redd had been happy. Drew and Lochlan had a great time though and it was super fun watching them.

When it came time for the boys to eat their giant cupcakes we made, Reddin wanted nothing to do with it! He just cried and it was pretty sad! (What is it with my children not liking to get their hands dirty? Mattie did the same thing when she turned one!) Drew and Lochlan on the other hand dug right in. They were so cute and funny!

The one thing that Redd did seem to like were the swings at the park. He had a fun time swinging and laughing at us.

We were also able to get a couple of great family shots too, with the help of Grandma and our neighbor Matt!

My dearest Reddin, I love you so much and I am extremely grateful that you are part of our family. This past year has gone by so fast, and I can't believe how much you have changed.
You are walking all over the place and you never want to stop moving! You do however still love snuggle time, and for that I am so thankful. I wish you could stay my precious little snuggler forever! I love your sweet smile that you are always so willing to share. I love how easy it is to put you down for naps and bedtime. You have always loved your crib and known that it means sleepy time! You do however, have a little temper when someones tries to take something from you that you want, and you have become quite vocal about it! It has been fun watching you become your own little person, even if it drives your dad crazy that you scream like a girl!

Happy Birthday little Redman! Thank you so much for loving us and allowing us to love you right back! Our family wouldn't be complete without you!