I prayed for this child and the Lord has granted me what I asked of Him. I Samuel 1:27

Monday, December 22, 2008

Would Chocolate Be Worth It?

It's cold here - really cold - as is most of the country (except for you Florida and Arizona types - and I don't want to hear about it) :)

As I was walking to the parking garage after work, I saw a group of workers huddled outside smoking. They looked miserable.

I couldn't help thinking that NOTHING would be that important to me to stand out in this cold.

But, what if I could only eat chocolate outside. Would I give it up? Would I stand out in below zero with sub-zero windchill to eat chocolate.

I'm thinking no.....what about you?

Sunday, December 21, 2008

OK God - I Got It

Our pastor really wanted our church choir to go to the local nursing home to go Christmas caroling.

Now, I don't have anything against this - but I just couldn't find a time that I thought would work.

She asked again at church, so I talked to the choir. We decided to meet at the nursing home at 6:30 tonight to do some caroling.

I was kind of dreading it. It's kind of cold here - and I really didn't want to get back out. My leg is finally feeling a little better (nothing is broken - which is good) and I didn't want to be out and about. I really just wanted to stay home, bake cookies and watch football.

But, I went - after all - I am the choir director.

We decided to just sing in the common room. We did some songs with guitar and some with piano. We were even able to take some requests from the residents.

What a great night we had. I'm so glad I went - and I'm so glad my little choir was willing to go with me.

So, God, I hear you - it's not all about me.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

I Got Cast!!!! (and hopefully won't be in a cast)


I'm so excited to be getting back on the stage!!!!
I just found out tonight that I have been cast in our local community theater's production of Working.
This little known musical is based on the book "Working" by Studs Terkel who chronicled the day in the life of 26 average American workers. The music was written by Steven Schwartz (LOVE HIM!! - he's the Wicked dude!) and James Taylor to name a few.
I got cast as the Grocery Check out Girl - Babe Secoli - She has a GREAT song and I'm very excited to get a chance to do this.
This will be the second Steven Schwartz show I've been in - I was in Pippin in college.
So, my life has just gotten very interesting with rehearsals 4 times a week, but since this is a vignette show, it shouldn't be too bad.
I get my x-rays tomorrow afternoon so I'll find out if I actually broke anything in my leg.

Monday, December 15, 2008

The Klutz Girl - Reporting In

***EDITED***
Alex pooped on the potty tonight!!!!!!!!!! YEAH!!!!! The Miralax is starting to work. He got his Percy - but I have a feeling he won't do it again until we come up with a new bribe :) I'm still going to enjoy this tonight!!!!!


First on my klutziness.

A couple of weeks before Thanksgiving I fell down my friend's steps at her house and landed on my left elbow. It hurt pretty bad, and I think I bruised the bone, but nothing too serious. It's been slowly healing since then.

Last night, I was on my way into our local community theater for an audition. As I was coming around the corner outside the theater, I tripped on a brick and wiped out - BIG TIME!!!!

I landed on my right knee, left elbow and hands. I had a small cut on my hand, scraped my elbow pretty bad (yes, the same elbow I hurt a few weeks ago) but the worst was my knee. In fact, the cobblestone is imprinted on my knee. I can barely walk, it's very swollen and it's starting to bruise.

Amazing - I seriously could trip over a flat surface.

Luckily the show I was auditioning for doesn't have any dancing, so I didn't have to learn a dance for my audition!

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I LOVE theater, and BA (before Alex) I was involved with our local community theater. This winter they are doing the musical "Working." Working is based on the book by Studs Turkel. We did this show when I was helping the theater department at the school I taught. You can learn more about the musical here I will find out later this week if I get cast. I'm excited to get back into the theater and back on stage so we will see what happens.

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Back in the late summer/early fall I was so concerned about Alex. His behavior was horrible and I really questioned my parenting. I just realized last week that he's gotten MUCH better. He's listening better, he's been much more pleasant, and he is tantruming less. He still has his moments, but boy is it better.

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I have signed up to go with Global Orphan Team on their first mission trip. We are going to be in Guatemala for a week at the end of March/beginning of April. I'm so excited about this trip. We are going to be going to a couple of orphanages to love on babies. We are also going to spend one day in Panajachel. And you KNOW I'll be getting a ride to Tierra Linda to visit Baby Alex and his family.

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Alex is really getting excited about Christmas. It's a lot of fun, and I can't wait to see how he handles everything. I have all of my shopping done. I still need to wrap everything and finish the baking.

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Am I the only one with this problem? I'll be going through my day, something will happen, and I'll make a mental note that this would make good blog material. I usually even "write" the post in my head. Then, when I finally get time to sit down and try to blog - I forget what I was going to write about. I think I'm losing my mind.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Sorry

So busy with Christmas stuff, I just don't have time to post like I want to.

But, I had to post this. In case you didn't know, some of my blogger (and IRL) friends are in Panajachel right now doing work with Mayan Families.

Yesterday, they went to Tierra Linda and got to spend some time with Alex and his family. Click here to see pictures of Alex.

He is getting SOOOOO big and his lip looks amazing. I just can't believe that it's him.

Sunday, December 07, 2008

Catch Up Post

Why does it seem like all of my posts lately are catch up posts?

These pictures are from the past month with vacation and a trip to see Santa thrown in.



I just love this picture - I know the lighting isn't very good, but I just think he is so precious. He climbed up on the back of our couch and I just had to get a picture of him.







And, generally speaking, this is why I don't have pictures of him anymore. He is always wanting to come see the picture on the camera before I get a chance to take it.


As I was packing for vacation, he rediscovered his sunglasses and just had to wear them around the house.



Look at that cutie!!!



This is the only "outside" picture I got of Alex on vacation. My mom and sis-in-law were sitting outside on the balcony reading and Alex had to be just like them.

Our days consisted of the following: Getting up, getting breakfast, playing in the condo until it got warm, going out to the pool (usually around 10:00), swimming until lunchtime, having lunch, then nap, then up to play some more before dinner. Because of this, have no pictures. I know - I'm a horrible mom. What I really need to do is have one of you come with us on our next vacation just to take pictures for me. :)



One Wednesday, we took Alex to a Children's Museum in Ft. Myers. Here Alex and I are waiting for the hands on animal demonstration. They took out an alligator, snapping turtle, some type of snake and frog for the kids. Alex loved it, but wouldn't touch any of them.


We then went into the Toddler Town. Alex could have staid here for hours and hours and hours. He LOVED it. They had these fruits and vegetables set up with shopping carts. He spent about 2 hours putting fruits/vegetables in his cart and then taking them back out.



Yeah!! I love my fruit!!!







As we were trying to leave, he found the Art area. They had musical instruments for them to play, and mom can't say no to music!!




We literally had to pull him out kicking and screaming.

On Friday, Jay and left Alex with my parents and we headed to Miami. We went to Little Havana and ate at this DIVINE Cuban restaurant. We then headed over to Culder Racetrack to bet on some ponies.

We took the "long" way there (with the hopes of seeing some alligators)

This next sign cracked me up - this is something we just don't see in Kentucky.



Although I was kind of disappointed we didn't see any panthers, we did see LOTS of alligators.




On the way back home the sun was setting just as we were crossing the bridge to the island. This picture was taken from our moving car. :)

We did have a great time on vacation this year. Alex slept REALLY well (which he didn't do last year) He had a lot of fun in the pool (and even got as far as blowing bubbles and jumping off the side and going under with my mom on Friday). Mom was even able to get him to go on the beach and make sand castles. I just love Sanibel Island and I'm already looking forward to next year.


We did take Alex to see Santa yesterday. I still can't believe that this is the third year for us to be doing things.
So, for a trip down memory lane. Here is Alex's picture with Santa from three years ago.


From last year:


I wasn't sure how he was going to do this year. He is excited about Santa and talks about him, but has also told Jay and I that he doesn't want Santa to come into his house. We have had to reassure him that Daddy and Mommy will meet Santa out in the driveway to get his presents. We've also been practicing asking Santa for presents. He decided he was going to ask Santa for princesses and cars. He also wanted to ask Santa for presents for the cat. (food and new toys in case you were wondering). When we got to the feed store, and he saw Santa, his eyes got SO big. He stood at the door and yelled his wish at Santa. It was so funny.
He wouldn't go sit on Santa's lap, so I had to hold him, but here's the picture from this year.

We also started a tradition of getting his picture taken on a saddle at the store. So again, for reference, three years ago:
Last year

And this year.

I'm so sad that my little guy is growing up. :(

Sunday, November 30, 2008

100 Things

I stole this from Holly but I thought it was pretty cool. The items I've done are in bold. Steal it from me if you want to.



1. Started your own blog

2. Slep under the stars

3. Played in a band (our band's name is Boo)

4. Visited Hawaii

5. Watched a meteor shower

6. Given more than you can afford to charity

7. Been to Disneyland

8. Climbed a mountain

9. Held a praying mantis

10. Sang a solo (actually did this today)

11. Bungee jumped

12. Visited Paris

13. Watched a lightning storm at sea

14. Taught yourself an art from scratch

15. Adopted a child

16. Had food poisoning

17. Walked to the top of the Statue of Liberty

18. Grown your own vegetables

19. Seen the Mona Lisa in France

20. Slept on an overnight train

21. Had a pillow fight

22. Hitch hiked

23. Taken a sick day when you’re not ill (but never at my current job!) :)

24. Built a snow fort

25. Held a lamb

26. Gone skinny dipping

27. Run a Marathon - haha - that's funny

28. Ridden in a gondola in Venice

29. Seen a total eclipse

30. Watched a sunrise or sunset

31. Hit a home run

32. Been on a cruise

33. Seen Niagara Falls in person

34. Visited the birthplace of your ancestors

35. Seen an Amish community

36. Taught yourself a new language

37. Had enough money to be truly satisfied

38. Seen the Leaning Tower of Pisa in person

39. Gone rock climbing

40. Seen Michelangelo’s David

41. Sung karaoke

42. Seen Old Faithful geyser erupt

43. Bought a stranger a meal at a restaurant

44. Visited Africa

45. Walked on a beach by moonlight

46. Been transported in an ambulance

47. Had your portrait painted

48. Gone deep sea fishing

49. Seen the Sistine Chapel in person

50. Been to the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris

51. Gone scuba diving or snorkeling

52. Kissed in the rain (Jay and I shared our first kiss in the rain - awwww)

53. Played in the mud

54. Gone to a drive-in theater

55. Been in a movie

56. Visited the Great Wall of China

57. Started a business (sort of - I made these fabric wreath things and tried to sell them)

58. Taken a martial arts class

59. Visited Russia

60. Served at a soup kitchen

61. Sold Girl Scout Cookies

62. Gone whale watching

63. Got flowers for no reason

64. Donated blood, platelets or plasma

65. Gone sky diving

66. Visited a Nazi Concentration Camp

67. Bounced a check

68. Flown in a helicopter

69. Saved a favorite childhood toy (Carrie, my first doll and my Donnie Osmond "action figure")

70. Visited the Lincoln Memorial (Jay proposed here!!)

71. Eaten Caviar

72. Pieced a quilt

73. Stood in Times Square

74. Toured the Everglades (just did this last week)

75. Been fired from a job

76. Seen the Changing of the Guards in London

77. Broken a bone (my pinkie toe 4 weeks before my wedding)

78. Been on a speeding motorcycle (Dad - were they ever speeding?)

79. Seen the Grand Canyon in person

80. Published a book

81. Visited the Vatican

82. Bought a brand new car

83. Walked in Jerusalem

84. Had your picture in the newspaper

85. Read the entire Bible

86. Visited the White House

87. Killed and prepared an animal for eating

88. Had chickenpox

89. Saved someone’s life

90. Sat on a jury

91. Met someone famous (non-political would be Tom Cruise and Paul Newman)

92. Joined a book club

93. Lost a loved one

94. Had a baby

95. Seen the Alamo in person

96. Swam in the Great Salt Lake

97. Been involved in a law suit

98. Owned a cell phone

99. Been stung by a bee

100. Totally copied a post from someone else's blog to your own

Monday, November 24, 2008

Stupid Old Man

****WARNING - There very well may be cussing in this post ****

Our plane left Saturday morning at 6:00 am. We had to get up at 3:00 - get Alex up at 4:00 to get to the airport on time.

When we got on the plane, I noticed that there was a couple sitting in front of us that was immediately very friendly to us, and an older gentleman sitting behind us that look annoyed that a little kid was sitting in front of him.

We got Alex in his seat and he was SO excited to be going to Flrrda.

We were delayed leaving the gate and then had to be deiced. Alex didn't understand the delay and just wanted to go "higher and higher." He started getting loud and whiney.

The plane was quiet - except for him. He wasn't have a full blown fit, but he was yelling, crying and just being two. I was trying to distract him and talk quietly to him.

And then - this asshole behind us leans forward and goes, "SHHHHHHH."

Seriously???? It took everything within me not to turn around and yell at him. But what was I thinking - everyone knows that when you shush a two year old they listen! :)

I was so pissed off. Alex eventually settled down. (and the nice lady in front of us was talking very sweetly to Alex - I think she heard the crotchety old man behind us)

You know - this was a Saturday morning - the weekend before Thanksgiving. This wasn't a Monday morning - this wasn't peak business travel time - and he wasn't being horrible. I'm still fuming about this.

And the worst part - after we got up in the air - said jerkwad feel asleep and started snoring. I wanted to turn around and shush him SOOOOO badly but I was trying to set a good example for Alex.

Asshole

Friday, November 21, 2008

Reader Digest Winners

Ok - I thought this would be fun to have a little give away. But I just realized that I now feel bad for the people who didn't win. :(

Here are the folks that won based on the random number generator that I used.

Alleen
Vanessa
Tricia
Kerry
Julia
Kelly

Please email me at kimhartz @ hotmail.com the name and mailing address you want the subscription sent to.

And for those of you who didn't win - I'm sorry - and now I really feel bad. :)

Monday, November 17, 2008

Reader's Digest Anyone?

So, this may make me sound like I'm old.

I LOVE Reader's Digest. The stories are short so I can usually read a couple before falling asleep at night. :)

I just received our renewal notice in the mail. If I renew our subscription (which I will), I can give 6 gift subscriptions. I don't have anyone that wants Reader's Digest that doesn't already get it.

So, if you are interested in a free year's subscription to Reader's Digest, please leave me a comment. If I get more then 6 people who are interested, then I'll draw random names.

EDITED: Since there are more then 6 people interested, I'll randomly draw names. I'll take comments until noon on Thursday. At that time I'll draw 6 names to see who gets the subscriptions. So, keep leaving the comments if you are interested.

Merry Christmas!! :)

Friday, November 14, 2008

Sometimes He Just Makes Me Laugh

This afternoon I told Alex, "Honey, we are going to get your shoes on, get in mommy's car, go pick up Daddy and then go to Cracker Barrel to have dinner with Papa Jack."

Alex looks at me and says, "He's heavy." Ok - so that was random - but not surprising. Alex sometimes comes out with the most random stuff.

I asked him what he meant and this is what he told me.

"Daddy, he's heavy. He too heavy. You no pick him up. I not too heavy. You pick me up."

I about died laughing. I didn't know what to tell him. I thought I'd try explaining the difference between picking someone up and picking someone up. :) I don't think he got it, but oh how precious!!!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Alex Update and Follow up Question

I realized that I haven't given much of an Alex update lately. Here's what he is doing.

- He loves going to school. He has lots of friends and really likes his teachers

- He talks - nonstop!!!! He is talking in full sentences. He amazes me almost every day with the words he knows - and how he uses them appropriately. We have an antique hutch upstairs. The other night one of the shelves fell. Alex went up to it this morning, touched it and said, "Can't touch - it's dangerous!" I don't think Jay and I have ever used that word with him.

- We can understand what he is saying about 80% of the time. Most of the other time he can eventually get us to understand what he is saying

- He is still very much into Disney Princesses, Barbie and anything pink. He is really into the Lion King and Aladdin at the moment. He also still like Dora and Diego. He likes to play with his trains and blocks and his farm set.

- He really likes to color right now. He has gone from scribbling across the page with whatever crayon he picks up to being deliberate with his color choice and actually trying to color the picture.

- He still likes to read - a lot! He also likes to read to us. Some books he knows because we have read them to him so many times. Others he likes to "read the pictures." Being a former reading teacher, I have to say I'm very happy with his literacy development!

- He can count to 20 and say his ABC's. At this point I don't think he can pick out the appropriate letters or numbers.

- He is SOOOOOOOOOOO stubborn. It's amazing. Here's one example. He loves my mom's chocolate chip cookies. (we call them Nanny Cookies) My parents where here last month visiting, and of course she brought Alex some nanny cookies. He refused to eat dinner that night. He knows that he can't have any "treats" if he doesn't eat his dinner. I asked him to take one bite of soup - one bite!!! (and it was basically cheese) I told him that if he didn't take one bite of his soup he couldn't have a nanny cookie. Would you believe that stinker didn't take a bite. We all had nanny cookies that night - except for him. And, he really didn't throw a fit about it. I think he knew! Stubborn, I tell 'ya!

- We still struggle with his eating some days. If it were up to him, he would live on fruit and carbohydrates. But, he is starting to eat chicken with dip (BBQ sauce) and really likes it, so we are at least getting some protein in him.

Terri asked me what exactly it is that I do. :) (by the way - Terri and I might be long lost cousins)

Let me see if I can explain this. The company I work for sells software that helps our clients manage their compensation. They can load their employee/job data into the software as well as the salary surveys that they purchase and do their market pricing in the tool. From there, they can do all kinds of analysis to make sure that they are paying within the market. We also sell services to go along with the software. We sell these services, along with the software, in a bundle for multiple years. My title is Engagement Manager. I have a book of clients who have purchased these services. My job is to make sure that all the different departments at my company are doing what they are supposed to for my clients, and then I'm the main point of contact for my client. Basically, I do project management with a little bit of relationship management thrown in.

My 20th high school reunion is going to be in a about a year and a half. I have volunteered to help organize the reunion (since we haven't had one in YEARS). I'm trying to figure out the best way to organize everyone and have a place where we can share information. Has anyone used any sites (like reunion . com) for any reunions? Does anyone have any suggestions?

8 days and counting until vacation!!!!!!

-

Thursday, November 06, 2008

First Question

Ok guys - you didn't ask me many questions. That either means that you already know everything about me, or you don't think I'm very interesting (and actually, you would be right on that last one!) :)

So, I'm going to answer a question that Mandy asked me.

"How did you decide to become a librarian and what career path have you chosen (cause you don't work in a library, right?)"

I've had a very interesting career road.

In high school I considered being both an accountant and a lawyer. I did mock trial, and although I really liked it, I didn't want to wear suits to work every day. :)

One summer I volunteered at a home for adults with Autism. I LOVED it - and loved the people I worked with. I then decided I wanted to become a special education teacher.

I also worked at our local public library from my sophomore year on. I worked in the children's department, and did the summer reading programs. I really liked working there, but I never knew that being a librarian was a viable career option. All of the people I worked with made minimum wage. No one was a degreed librarian.

So, I got my undergraduate degree in Education of the Handicapped and was certified to teach students with Learning Disabilities, Developmental Handicaps, and Reading K-12. Near the end of my undergrad degree I realized that you could be a career librarian so I started looking into that.

I got my first teaching job within 2 weeks of graduating. I wasn't sure if I was going to want to teach special education for 30 years, so I started looking into my options.

I decided to start working on my Master's in Library Science with a concentration in Children's and Young Adult Literature and School Librarianship. I figured that when I was done in the classroom, I could then just become a school librarian, or I could get out of education totally.

So, within 6 months of finishing my undergrad, I started my graduate degree program. I LOVED my graduate degree work. I knew I had finally found what I was meant to do.

But, I soon found my "plan" of being a children's/school librarian going out the window. Every class I took, from marketing to acquisitions to reference to cataloging to management, got me excited. I didn't know what to do. I talked to my advisor and she just laughed at me and then said, "Kim, you need to go work in a special library. You will have the opportunity to do all of that."

I was going to graduate in the summer of 1998, so I put in my resignation at the school I was teaching in that spring. I then spent that spring/summer looking for a library job.

I found a job at a video production studio in Columbus (where we were living at the time) that summer, which I didn't take as we moved to Kentucky (ok - that's another story for another time).

I was blessed to find a job within 2 weeks of moving to Kentucky. I went to work for the American Printing House for the Blind as a cataloging/reference librarian. I loved this job. APH has a database of books that have been put into braille, large print, and sound recording by various agencies around the country. This gives people who use these resources one place to find the books that they need in the format that they need it in. I cataloged all of these resources, answered reference calls, and maintained the database (including doing some web based database work). It was a great job for me.

But, I didn't see where I would have much room for growth there. So, I then applied for a job at my current employer. They weren't looking for a librarian, but they needed one. (and luckily I was able to convince them that and got the job)

I work for a HR Consulting firm. I was hired to work in their centralized library of salary surveys. Yes, you heard that right. I was surrounded by books that tell our consultants what people should be paid for the job that they are in. I had an opportunity to revamp the library (as it had been mismanaged for a number of years) as well as continue doing database work.

I then was moved into a team leader position and had a staff under me. The library was located within a group at the company that did all of the market pricing for the company. (using the surveys in my library to come up with the market rate for jobs) I soon had a trainer under me and then some market pricers.

I then moved into a team leader position that took me out of the library. It was one of the hardest decisions I ever made. It was a great opportunity for me, but I wasn't sure if I wanted to let go of my library work.

It was a great decision for me, because it then set me up for the current job that I'm in that I've been blessed to do on a part time basis.

So, I've had a long, interesting road to where I am now. But, I wouldn't have it any other way.

Monday, November 03, 2008

Halloween

I've so enjoyed seeing everyone's Halloween costume pictures. Now, here's mine.

See this costume - isn't it cute.



Now - I need you to just imagine what Alex would have looked like in it.

Because.....this is what he wore.




Yes, he REFUSED to wear his costume. He wouldn't wear it at the zoo last weekend or Friday night for trick or treating.


Here we are at the zoo. We've taken a family picture at this same spot for the last three years. THREE YEARS!!!! Can you believe we are on our third year of things???? Jay isn't in the picture as he was at a horse show.






Alex was SOOOO excited to see the princesses. Here he is hugging Snow White. He also saw Cinderella, but my batteries died so I didn't get a picture.

We struggled with trick or treating this year. He was just very cranky. He did start munching on one of those candy bracelets at one point in the night. He then had this white powder all over his face and hands. (you may have to enlarge the picture to see it)


Jay and I were so excited, because we felt like he was actually in a costume - a 80's crack addict!!! :) (yes, we have a sick sense of humor)
And don't forget
GO VOTE!!!!!!!!!!!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

I Know It's Early But....

I actually picked up our Christmas Cards today!!! I've never done anything this early before. And actually, I wasn't early - it was just because I was 5 months late getting Alex's 2 year old pictures taken. :)

If you would like to get one of our Christmas Cards this year, please email me at kimhartz@hotmail.com

I'm not sure I ordered enough so if I need to get more, I want to get them ordered soon.

Oh - and if you were at G'fest - I don't have a copy of the directory yet, so I don't have your address.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Is This Brainwashing?

I'm sorry - just had to share. :)

As many of you know, we are a very political family. We don't talk bad about any candidate in our house. But, whenever anything political comes on tv, Alex says, "John McCain!!" It cracked us up when he first started it. In fact, even if Obama is on tv, he says, "John McCain!"

He has now started saying, "Vote for John McCain!" I swear we didn't teach it to him, but he does get a big reaction from us, so I'm sure that has helped egg him on.

We've also taught him something for our Michigan friends. :)


Sunday, October 26, 2008

New Look

I've been wanting a new look for my blog for a couple of months, but just couldn't get my act together to pick out what I wanted.

Nikki worked her magic again, and I love it. If you need a blog makeover, please check out her site. Her prices are reasonable, and she is raising money to go on her mission trips. She is amazing!!!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

I Need to Remember This!

As I've mentioned, Alex and I have had some major battles lately. It's mostly because he's exactly like me; controlling, stubborn, little patience.....hmmm. :)

Alex also hits me ALL the time. We have been working with him but it doesn't seem to be getting better. I'm sure that there is some reaction that he's getting from me when he does it, even though I've been working on it.

But, then today, he does this. I want to make sure I'm documenting it so I can come back to read it on our hard days.

Jay and his dad left early this morning to go show one of our horses. I woke up feeling horrible - terrible stomach ache and the things that go along with it. I wasn't sure how I would handle him today by myself. (yes, I'm a baby, yes, I'm screwed if anything happens to Jay)

I told Alex that I wasn't feeling well, that my tummy hurt. He's been pretty good this morning (although I have to admit that the TV has been helping out a lot).

He then came over and climbed on my lap. He said, "Big hugs!!" and gave me a big hug. Then he said, "Kisses, mommy" and gave me kisses. Then, he took my face in between his two hands, looked me right in the face and said, "There, mommy, that will make you feel much better."

Be.still.my.heart.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

More Pics of Baby Alex

Look what I just got!!!! Kim Mc from the Mayan Family Connection group is sponsoring three of Alex's aunts to go to school. She has blessed Alex's extended family with the schooling for the girls, traditional outfits, vitamins, beds (the two beds that were in the big dwelling when I was there), table/chairs, etc.

Her family also just purchased a bed for Gloria and Manuel!!!!! If you remember, they have been sleeping on a piece of plywood. Manuel came this week to pick up their bed, and Sharon just sent me these pictures.




A couple of things I noticed. Alex is wearing an outfit we sent with him - and it's a 9 month Carter's outfit that was definitely too big on him when I sent him home, so it's good to see that he's growing. His lip continues to look great!!! Dad is still using the Baby Bjorn that I left with them. I'm so happy to see that they are getting good use out of it.
These pictures just make me so happy - it's hard to explain. :)

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Questions Anyone?

So, I need to get to the questions I posted a couple months ago, but I'm not up to doing that yet.

Instead, I'll steal an idea from some other blogger friends.

Now is your chance to learn anything you want about me. Ask me any questions, and I'll answer them. You can either email me at kimhartz@hotmail.com or leave a comment.

This should be fun!!!

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Mother of ALL Posts

Ok - I finally found the cord to my camera and downloaded the pictures. These are pictures from the beginning of September. So, sit back, relax and here we go!

These pictures are of Alex dancing.






Here's a video of his dancing. He has quite the moves - and he can multi-task - dance and eat lunch. :)

video

A couple weekends ago, we took Alex to a local farm for their pumpkin patch. Alex hated most of it except for the hay ride.





This is the only picture we got of him with the pumpkins. He would not let me take any more pictures.


We tried to get him to go to the little pond to look at the fish, but then we got "attacked" by these ducks. They were so cute - but, of course, Alex was scared of them. :)


That night our volunteer fire department had a hayride and chili dinner to raise money for our local children's charity. Alex LOVED it. He had so much fun.
(and I'm sure you can guess that I'm talking in these next pictures - not sure what I was talking about!!)


Family picture soon after we took off.


Guatoberfest!!



What can I say that hasn't already been said? What an amazing weekend. Thanks so much to Julie, Kerry and Megan for all of their hard work.



Alex and I got up on Thursday and made the 12 hour car drive there. He did really good. He took a nap, read his books, listened to his "songs" and watched his "movies."



Then on Friday, we met up with Kerry, Megan and Holly to help get things organized. I was a very bad mommy and pushed Alex a little too much. We didn't get back up to the room until about 3:00. We had to be back downstairs at 5:00 to work registration. Needless to say, Alex didn't want to nap at first. So, he laid on my bed and colored.




So, guess when he did finally fall asleep? 4:20!! Yikes!! I picked him up at 5:00 and carried him downstairs. He sleep on my shoulder for another 30 minutes or so. But, when he woke up he was a BEAR. He didn't want to go into the room with everyone else. So, we were back up in our hotel room before the event even started. I was so upset. It was the one time that everyone was together and I really missed talking to everyone. I know that there were people there that I didn't get a chance to meet.



Here is the devil, I mean, angel baby taking his nap in the big bed.



Here was the amazing view from our hotel room. I should have taken pictures on a nicer day, but I think you get the idea.








Saturday was the aquarium. You will see that this is the only picture I got. Why, you may ask, because Alex FREAKED OUT inside. He was scared of everything. He was shaking so bad, I just couldn't put him through it anymore. All he wanted to do was go back to the hotel. By this time, I was so upset. I actually considered just packing up and heading home. It just didn't seem worth it - for him or me.
As Alex and I were leaving the aquarium - the most amazing thing happened. First, let me back up. Many of you who read my blog also read Julia's blog. You know that her beloved Daddy went to be with Jesus just a few days before Guatoberfest. Her family still came. I was surprised that they did. I think that Julia felt that she had an obligation to us - to Kerry and Megan - and probably to her Daddy. I don't know how she did it.
So, Julia was standing outside of the aquarium letting people know what was going on as they arrived. She saw us and asked me what we were doing. When I told her that we were just heading back, she asked to pray for us. This amazing woman put her hands on Alex and I and prayed for us - for him - and I lost it. Her prayer was so amazing and it made me cry. I was crying for her - for her loss - for her compassion for Alex and I - for the wish that Jay was with me to help - and because I was mad at myself for getting so frustrated.
So, Julia asked me to leave Alex with her. That she would keep him outside so I could go in and enjoy myself and maybe he would be willing to go back in for lunch. How could I let her do this? Someone who I should be helping??? She insisted - and for those of you who have met Julia - you just don't say no to her. :)
So, I went back in and just watched all of these amazing kids and their families. Can I just tell you how wonderful that was??? And, Alex calmed down and Julia got him excited about going in to eat chicken!! We ended up having a great lunch with Kerry, Cameron, Megan and McKenzie.
After a nice nap, Alex and I headed to Barefoot Landing. At first I was a little concerned. I hadn't made arrangements to meet anybody there, so I wasn't sure what would happen.
But, I'm not sure why I was worried. I met up with Alleen, Ferdy, and Gabriella. Alex and Miss G had fun last year together and this year was no different.






You have to go to to Alleen's G'fest post to see the cutest picture of Alex and Miss G.



This cutie is Miss Maya. She and Miss G are just two peas in a pod.



After Barefoot Landing we all just took over the lobby. Oh my there were lots of us and lots of kids. This was so funny. Julia's son Mac had one of those laser pointer things and he was pointing it on the floor and the kids were crawling around trying to chase it.



Here's a self portrait of me with Miss G. Is she not the cutest thing in the whole world?

On Sunday, I had the honor of speaking about COTA and my fostering experience. I think it went ok. I was a little distracted by all the kids running around - and Alex who wanted me to hold him - but I think I did ok. Sunday ended up being a beautiful day, so Alex and I got our suits on and went out to the beach and the pool. He had a great time. We didn't make it to the outlets that afternoon as Alex was napping.
We hung out in the room after the evening send off. The kids got to take a ride on the luggage cart and loved it.










And the beautiful Abby Grace. Oh my gosh - this little peanut is just precious - full of spunk - and I think is going to keep her mama and dada very young. :)

It really was an amazing time. Of course I didn't take as many pictures as I wanted, but it's so hard to do that with a 2 year old by yourself. It was great to meet so many more blogger friends, facebook friends, and a.com friends. It was also great to see people again this year that were at G'fest last year. I especially liked spending time with Holly, Gmom, Gia and Nino.
This weekend, my parents were in the area staying at a local lake. We took Alex out for his first boat ride and he loved it - which is good - since my dad just bought a deck boat!!



It was a beautiful fall day to be out on the lake.









My Secret Blog Pal ROCKS!!!!! Much to my surprise, when Alex and I got back to the room on Friday (at G'fest), I found a huge gift bag full of stuff from my SBP. So, either my SBP was at G'fest, or knew someone who was going. We got tons of clothes for Alex (and mostly pants which is EXACTLY what he needs), some wonderful pampering things for me, and some snacks (which I don't have pictures of since Alex and I hit those during G'fest)
Thank you SBP!!!!!!




A couple more things (if any of you are still reading). Today is Jay's 38th birthday - 38!!! I'm married to an almost 40 year old!!! :)
And the best news yet. This morning we went to give Alex a bath. As I was getting him out of his pjs' he said, "I go potty, mommy." I said, "Do you want to go pee-pee on the potty?" And he said yes!!! (lately he has protested big time) So, I sat him on the potty and he tried to go. He didnt' - but I was just happy that he was trying again. So, I put him in the bathtub. All of the sudden he said, "I have to go poopy, mommy!" So, out of the tub we went, onto the potty, and he peed!!!!!!!!!!!!! I've never been so happy!!! I got excited, Jay got excited, we got him M&Ms, and we called Nanny and Papa. Now, that has been it for today, but I'm seeing some progress.
I hope to be back to regular blogging now - with pictures and everything.