Sunday, January 25, 2009

Ella preparations and other 2009 changes

Life has been particularly busy these last couple of weeks, but I'm certainly not complaining. I think I prefer to be busy over lacking enough to fill my time. However, I've still not managed to fully follow through any particular week doing the Fly lady zones, but we are making progress.
So each small step in that direction is a positive one. And yet again this week, I find myself more determined than ever to make it through the week cleaning more deeply and becoming more organized. Of course, I've also got to fight off the cold that has tackled my immune system, but that more than possible! After all, we can do anything for fifteen minutes.

Speaking of small steps, it's particularly hard to believe that we have only thirty (or so) small days left until Ella Rose is schedule to join us. Wow! It seems like yesterday that I was busting with the excitement of discovering Ella was beginning to form inside me and now within a few short weeks she'll be outside of me and with us for many years to come. Josh and I have been doing a lot of work on her nursery and we are much closer to ready for her arrival than we were two weeks ago. Ella's crib is in its place and all the extraneous furniture has been moved into storage. That's right! I no longer have an office here in our home, but instead we have Ella's room and I can hardly wait to have Ella inside that room too.

Speaking of hardly waiting, honestly, I am secretly wondering if Ella will wait until her scheduled due date to grace us with her presence. I've begun to have some fairly strong Braxton Hicks contractions. So I guess we'll see how patient this little one is. After all, as people continue to remind me it's all in her time now.

Thankfully, preparations for her arrival at church are moving right along too though. The nursery actually has a crib, pack-n-play and a bassinet for Ella, Avis, and Naomi now. All of these were moved into the church's annex nursery today along with a changing table and several other items. Now we've just got to continue adding to this little area and schedule nursery workers so that preparations will be finalized for when the girls are ready to use the space. Toys are essentials too of course.

But as I sit here and think about the preparations that we have yet to do before Ella arrives, such as putting a door on her closet, a mattress in her crib and a border on her walls, I can't help but think about how much has changed in the last year.

Just this weekend I attended my first Moultrie Junior Women's Club meeting as a New Member. Likewise, just this weekend I gave my first annual report as Senior Warden of St. Margaret's Episcopal Church. And finally just this last week three baby showers for Ella have been scheduled, one at school, one at church and one in my hometown.

However, as much as things have changed...some have remained the same. For instance, just like last year and the year before that this is a busy season for Josh. The high school musical is rapidly approaching and he's working hard to finalize set preparations as well as lighting for the musical. And as if that wasn't enough to keep him busy, he's begun preparations for the Dessert Theater taking place on Valentine's Day. Josh will be playing one of the lead roles as Adam and reading his love letters to Eve. I can hardly wait to hear those!

And so as 2009 rapidly rolls forward, I can't help but wonder what will continue to change throughout this year and what will change. How has your life changed in the last year? And what changes do you see coming in this one?

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Blessings of the New Year

Wow! This year is quickly bringing about many activities and changes. It is so hard to believe that in just over six weeks our little girl will be joining us. That's assuming she arrives by her due date. And to be honest, I'm perfectly content with the idea of her arriving a little late. But, regardless of when our little one arrives, this year is already shaping up to be a spectacular one.

How so? Well, I've been fairly faithful about keeping up with my New Year's Resolutions. I've got paper ready to work on Ella's scrapbook. Also I've been doing really well about completing my Fly Lady missions more days than not. Finally, both Josh and I have had no shortage of social obligations. The date night and Bible Study groups that we'd hoped to participate in this year have come to fruition. We will be going to the first meeting for our Bible Study in a few nights. The first group date night is scheduled for later this month, and on top of both of these exciting events, Josh has purchased the book for the Sunday School book study. So needless to say we've not been lacking in activities around the Briones' home.

Plus, Josh has been staying more than busy working on the musical preparations at the local auditorium. This year they'll be presenting Li'l Abner and I can hardly wait to see it for the first time. I've thoroughly enjoyed listening to discussions of the plans for this show. And just today we received our notification from the Arts Center that the Dessert Theater planned for Valentine's Day will be occurring. Needless to say, we're both eagerly looking forward to attending it.
However, our excitement with these new plans doesn't focus just around what we've been doing outside of the home. Oh no! Let me tell you more about what I have been doing while Josh has been otherwise occupied outside of the home? I've begun doing some major work on Ella's nursery this last weekend and believe that major progress has been made toward converting the room from my office and into her room. All of her toys have found a home and her books have their own shelves. Josh and I put together her swing, bouncy chair, baby tub, and we've moved her car seats, slings, crib bedding, and carriers into her room. Even more work will be taking place this weekend since my Momma (Ella's Gran) will be delivering her crib, stroller, hamper for clothes, and rocking chair. I can hardly wait to have her room fully decorated and ready to go for our little wiggle worm.

And yes, I've even managed to stay more than busy when I've not been working on Ella preparations. A good friend and I recently went to go see Bride Wars at the local theater. It was a cute chick flick. But this was far from the first social outting that I'd had lately. Truly, I've found myself going out more than usual to celebrate or experience various social events with friends. And yes, it certainly appears as if this trend will continue. Not only do we have plans to go out regularly over the next few months for various social obligations such as the Dessert Theater, Little Abner, our monthly Date night, weekly Bible Study night, and Junior Women's Club functions, but I've also been drafted to head up the Superbowl chili sale for church. :)

As you can tell busyness is abounding around here. Truthfully, I'm loving it. So what wonderful things has the New Year brought into your life? And how are your New Year Resolutions going?

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Happy New Year!

Hi all-
Well, after a LONG sabatical, I'm back to blogging. I've decided that it only makes sense to pick this back up. Blogging is just one of the many things that I've let fall by the way side that I'm going to try to pick back up.
Honestly during the last year I've let my scrapbooking fall by the wayside. And although I've continued doing the Fly lady stuff it's only been half way. So how do I half way FLY? It's pretty simple. I've continued to do the weekly home blessing and cleaning, but I've not attempted to keep up with the daily 15 minute missions or the weekly deep cleaning. But I know with a little one coming soon, that both of these areas are going to be essential to keeping our home nice and tidy for our little one (especially when she gets large enough to move around on her own.
And in order to upgrade my involvement with Fly Lady, I spent my day updating my charts and organizers today. I'm very excited about them and I just know that slowly but surely everything is being written down and becoming much more functional.

But to get off of Fly Lady for a little bit. Let's talk about my other goals for 2009 (the year of Ella) are to begin Scrapbooking again. If nothing else, I want to make sure that Ella has a nice scrapbook to look back on from the first year(s) of her life. And I want to renew my involvement with Flylady. Finally, I'd like to return to blogging more regularly. I do so love visiting with all of you.
And I'd like to make sure that cloth diapering is a major success for us! I just know Ella and I can make it work. She's already got a really nice stash of diapers: Fuzzi Bunz, Bumgenius, Work-at-home-mom Minky All-in-one cloth diapers, prefolds, liners, inserts, cloth wipes, etc. And I'm determined that cloth diapering is best for her.

Additionally, I'd like to ensure that Ella's experiences with solid food when she gets old enough to eat it are positive, so as of right now my plans are to make her babyfood here at home. :) I still have a lot of research to do on what to introduce first, etc. but I just know that making her food myself will ensure that it's organic and truly good for her.

Beyond these goals, I know I want to work on doing a bit more as a home-maker. I know I'm going to be a stay at home Mom for at least nine weeks once Ella gets here, and possibly for almost five months before I head back to school. The length of time I get to spend with her before heading back to work depends on whether she waits until the second week of March to arrive. :)

Except for all of these goals though, I have no idea what this year will bring. I'm hopeful that it will bring many more joys than sorrows. And how could it not? After all, it's the year of Ella's arrival.

And everything else is up in the air, but as I figure those out, you'll be among the first to know what I decide.

So what are your resolutions for the New Year?