a long overdue update!

since it's been since september since my last post, i feel i should write up an update!

of course the main news in our lives is the birth of our first baby on february 4. little levi jonathan joined our lives after "only" 38 hours of labor (and 9 days after his due date) and we couldn't be happier. at birth he was 9 lbs, 4 oz and 21 inches long.

on march 11 i resigned from my job at CEVA to stay home with the little dude. it's great! i love being at home with him. he is a very healthy and content little guy and we get along very well. this coming monday he has his 2 month check-up, so i'll have to post his stats when we get done with that. he also has to get some shots... eek! mama is a little nervous about that.

since his birth levi has enjoyed spending time with all manner of friends and family. he's a big hit! about three weeks ago he took his first roadtrip to nana and grandpa's in waxhaw. it's only a 3 hour drive, and he did great!

other than adjusting to a new member of our household, we haven't have much going on. we're making plans to re-landscape the front of our house and plant a garden in the back yard. i'm trying to learn some money-saving tricks. i have not been successful at all in couponing and i already want to give up trying. all i can find are coupons for crap i don't want. i'm sure i could go to the grocery store and get a lot of stuff for a little money... but really... would i want any of it? food is one place where we spend a lot of money, though so i am trying to find ways to cut costs and still enjoy the food we eat.

we're slowly getting back in to our jobs serving at SummitKids. jon works security and i work check-in. it's definitely something we both enjoy, but we have been running on somewhat limited sleep/energy so we're trying not to over-commit until we're back to firing on all cylinders. levi is now sleeping about 5 and 1/2 hours at night which is great! a lot better than 2 anyway.

we are enjoying being parents, but i will say it really is going by too quickly. i can't believe it's already been 8 weeks since i gave birth to our big boy. as a mom i really struggle with this. i found myself crying as i packed away his newborn clothes - he's too big for almost everything he was wearing for the first 2 months. i look at our pictures from the hospital almost every day trying to remember those first moments when he was born. i never want to forget the moment when they first handed that little bundle to me. he was so calm and so alert and he looked right at me like he knew exactly who i was. really i need to take some time over the next couple of days to journal what i remember about those first days together. i hate it that there is so much i don't remember and i'm so bad about journaling/scrapbooking/etc... so a lot of times i end up forgetting a lot of things. i know i will never remember everything, but for now i'm just trying to cherish every moment and enjoy this little baby as much as possible.


fall is right around the corner!

i noticed on the way to work today that the leaves are starting to change color. it makes me so excited when the seasons start to change!

it seems like we have a lot going on, but at the same time it feels like there's not much to write about.

work has been crazy for me. i haven't been working insane hours, but i have been getting home pretty tired, so thankfully jon has been making lots of awesome dinners for me! tonight he made ribs with tater tots & steamed broccoli. oh man, those were some awesome ribs.

right now i'm knitting a couple of projects. i have just a few rows left on a stocking cap for my friend brandi's little boy, and i have 1 hand-warmer done on a pair for my coworker krista.

and... i'm reading sense and sensibility. it's wonderful. i love jane austen.

and that's about it! random post for this monday evening!


so what if i ate a half package of oreos?

i also drank a whole glass of milk!

it's been a wonderful weekend here in durham. as always, it has passed by too quickly. we started on friday night babysitting for friends Josh & Lauren. it was a lot of work... the baby was in bed before we got there and we had to deal with the harrowing task of choosing a television program to watch. :-) they do have about 1000 more channels than we do, so it was a pretty difficult decision.

saturday we spent the day together. we went shopping and i got my first maternity clothes. whoa are maternity pants comfortable or what?! which brings me to a couple of things i like about being pregnant.

1. maternity clothes
2. my new giant appetite.

the list of things i like about being pregnant is much longer, but there are a few things that i'm not particularly enjoying. most of them i won't divulge because it wouldn't be very lady-like. a couple of others include trouble sleeping and back pain. oh, and crying in public. i've cried at at least two durham bull's games! who knew baseball could be so moving?

i'm thrilled that there are only 2 days left in august. i think it's my least favorite month, and september is such a lovely month. i'm really looking forward to the fall in north carolina.

in other news i can feel the baby moving pretty frequently! now that is exciting!


a few funny things that have happened lately

near my work there is a small community of apartment complexes, and they are all joined by Alm Street, which is a 35-mph stretch of road, with a fancy grass median to separate the eastbound traffic from the westbound traffic. Alm Street dead-end's at Briar Creek Parkway and twice in the last three weeks i have been driving down Alm toward Briar Creek Parkway in my proper lane of traffic when i have met someone driving up Alm also in my lane. it's hard to describe in words, but just imagine you're driving down I-40 in the eastbound lane, when suddenly someone is driving west, but they are also in the eastbound lane. i don't understand how it happens at all, but i am glad that i was at least paying attention.

now for another story. on thursday i was driving home from work on TW Alexander and i was stopped at the stoplight beside Sheetz. i had my window down and i was blasting some Hillsong United (serious praise & worship music for those of you not up to speed on your Christian music) and i was minding my own business, when a bright yellow car missing the front bumper pulled up beside me. the young weird-o, i mean man, in the bright yellow car had all of his windows down and i guess he thought i was checking him out, b/c he definitely did the little "chin thrust forward/upward" motion that guys sometimes do to say "hi" to you (aka hit on you) in traffic. first of all, i was not checking him out. his car was yellow and it was missing a bumper. it caught my attention. secondly, i'm pretty sure he was about 14 years old. it was really awkward! but i flashed him the 99 (me & jon's nickname for my wedding & engagement rings b/c in total there are 99 diamonds in them) and then thankfully the light turned green and he sped off at a ridiculously dangerous speed. i guess he was embarassed.

story number 3. today jon read me an article about how to protect your marriage from the evils of facebook. it warned couples not to check out your ex's page or post lots of comments of past and/or current crushes. here is how our conversation went:

Me: Do you have any current crushes?
Jon: No! You?
Me: No. Well, maybe Michael Westin.
Jon: No, I meant that YOU are my current crush.

Hehehe! Oh, don't worry... Michael Westin is just a character on Burn Notice & I don't really have a crush on him.


is my "story" interesting enough?

i think my blog is a little boring. i worry that maybe it's because my life is boring. i recently read a million miles in a thousand years by donald miller. it's a memoir in which he describes his journey over the past few years of "editing" his life. basically some guys who liked blue like jazz decided to make a movie of it and asked him to help write the screenplay. and through this process they indicate to him that they're going to have to spruce up the story because it really wasn't interesting enough to make a good movie. so this gets good ole' don to thinking that maybe his life is too boring and he is inspired to find out what he needs to do in order to have a more interesting life. i love, love, love donald miller. i came this close to moving to portland to stalk him and make him fall in love with me. but i was pretty disappointed in this book! and it makes me sad! but i feel like he has turned into kind of a flake. there were a couple of parts that were really good. part of him "rewriting" his life was that he decided to seek out his dad who had abandoned him when he was small and forgive him. i was really touched by that, because it made me appreciate my dad a lot more for being so amazing, and it also reminded me of my Heavenly Father who will never abandon me even though i often do so to Him and He always seeks me out to restore our relationship... even to the point of dying on the Cross so that my sins can be forgiven. anyway, i digress... i guess the reason i didn't enjoy don's book that much is because i felt like he wrote it more from the perspective of "how can i make my life more interesting so that people will think i'm cool" than he did from "what paths does God want me to take to make people think that He is cool". (of course, he doesn't a ton of awesome things to help other people - especially through the Mentoring Project which is the organization he founded to help child w/out fathers... i promise i'm not overlooking that!)

so anyway... is my life boring? i guess it is, compared to some. i mean, i don't live anywhere truly exciting like india or argentina (these are the 1st two interesting places that came to my head), but i think durham is awesome and fun and there are plenty of people who need help here for Jon & i to plug in and minister to. i don't have an exciting job like journalism or social work. i don't really feel like in my job i do anything for the "greater good". i basically get up and go to work and stress out and come home and then repeat. my blog posts consist of random thoughts & musing and stories about my cats. and i feel like donald miller would think my life is boring and that my story isn't worth telling.

well guess what donald miller! i love my life. ever sweet second spent with my amazing husband. every wonderful moment shared with my family. all the snuggles i get from my kitties. the laughs i share with lauren and ed and heidi and lorraine and lisa and bobby and everyone else at work despite the fact that we're all stretched very thin and we're all tired and stressed. those moments are worth living and telling. every worship experience that i am a part of at my church. all the runny noses and diapers in the 2-year old class we teach at church. the parties and the Bible studies, and the Habitat projects... the camping trips and beach trips and road trips and births and deaths. all of these things to me are an important part of my story and i am thankful that God is helping me be at peace with these simple things and that He is helping me see that it doesn't really matter what my story is. what matters is that in my life that He gets the glory. that's the key element that i felt was missing from a million miles in a thousand years. and i know that it's usually missing from my life... which is what i'm praying God will change.


New House

On December 11 we closed our our 1st home. We had been looking at houses at the beginning of 2009 and we did see anything we liked. All of the houses looked the same and none of them were in neighborhoods we liked and we really didn't feel at peace about it.

About 2 weeks after we stopped looking and resigned our lease in our apartment they announced the 1st time home-buyers tax credit. To be honest we were a little bummed, but we figured that God would provide no matter what, so we decided not to worry about it. In November when we heard they were extending the tax credit we decided to look at a few more houses and in early November we fell in love with our new little house! Within a week of our 1st viewing we were under contract and within 5 weeks we were moving in!

Here are a few pictures!

This one is before we moved in - that's why it's from the car. We stalked our house while we were under contract.

This is me looking silly unlocking the door for the 1st time.

This is my Christmas mantle, complete with a fire.

Our little house in the snow!


Welcome to 2010!

It's hard to believe that it's almost half-way through January already! Typically the month of January is a slow one at work for me, but not this year! I have been as busy as a bee, however I was informed on Friday that we are all returning to 35-hour work weeks and my new hours will be 9:30 to 5:30. This is very exciting news! I hope that it really works out!

Many of you now know that Jon & I purchased our first home! We closed on December 11 and moved in on December 12. We are mostly unpacked and settled in. The main catalyst for that was Christmas! We hosted Mom & Dad Powell, Adam, Amy, and cousins Bryan & Angie with their 2 children, Glynn & Ainsley. They are cousins of mine on my dad's side & this makes 2 Christmases in a row with them! :-)

It was really one of the best Christmases ever. It felt so cozy and warm in our little house! I am looking forward to many more Christmases here.

I will post pictures soon! If you want our new address let me know & I'll email it to you!

I'm excited about this new year. As of yet we don't have a whole lot of plans in the pipeline. In July we're planning a trip to Bastrop, TX (near Austin) to celebrate my Grammy & Grandpa Powell's 60th wedding anniversary. We're looking forward to many laughs to be shared with family. Other than that, nothing is set in stone. Jon is continuing to enjoy his job here in RTP. My job is keeping me very busy - which is good for our company, but I'm tired! I am hoping that our revenues will recover enough to *hopefully* allow us to hire someone to help in my department. That's what I'm praying for anyway! I'm still dreaming of graduate school. I just keep telling myself it's never too late! For now, we are going to get settled in our home and anticipate spring when we can start doing some projects in the yard, including putting in a veggie garden. It will probably be a small one to start with - we're both novices, and I don't want to go too big on our first try.

We have a lovely guest room, so if you ever need a place to stay in Durham, let me know!
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