Saturday, August 2, 2008

The joy of pizza...

Last night Charlee, for the first time, joined in a family tradition of ours. It's a tradition in this Saunders household to have Costco pizza nearly every Friday night. So, I had this brilliant idea that I would give Charlee my pizza crust last night to see what she'd do with it. I thought there could be no harm in giving her this piece of bread...surely it wouldn't make a mess. Yeah, that's where I had a temporary brain fart and forgot that a nine month old can (and will) make a disaster of just about anything! Needless to say, Charlee thoroughly enjoyed gnawing on this crust, but she was quickly changed into a clean pair of pajamas afterwards. =)

Sheer joy!

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Charlee the ballerina...a true oxymoron

Okay, so anyone who knows anything about Charlee know that she is not all that girly. In fact, we've now reached the point where she enjoys taking her hair bows out of her hair. Doesn't bother me much at all, however, because I thoroughly enjoy the guilty look on her face when she's caught in the act!

Anyway, here's our little girl posing like a little ballerina...something you'll probably never see again so enjoy it now!

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Bathtime with Daddy...a first!

Tonight Adam gave Charlee a bath for the very first time ever! Of course, he was a little apprehensive at first but I reassured him he'd be long as the water's not too hot and you don't leave her there's not a whole lot you can screw up. Besides, she LOVES bathtime and would likely be content to stay in all day till she turned into a prune! Anyway, Papa decided it would be fun to give Charlee a mohawk during bath time tonight...hilarious. All he had to do was wet the sides because as most of you know this child quite often looks like a rooster with the wild hairs atop her head. Enjoy...we sure did!

Delight yourself in the Lord...

Delight yourself in the Lord,and he will give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to the Lord;trust in him, and he will act. --Psalm 37:4-5
Delight: to feel or express joy or triumph; to take great pleasure; to give joy or satisfaction to

I just couldn't help but be overwhelmed by the simple truth of the words on Charlee's shirt today from Psalm 37. I dressed her in the morning, but it wasn't until later in the afternoon when we were playing (and she was having a great time doing her head-banging routine) that I thought to myself, "Wow, this child doesn't even know the Lord yet, but she continues to find delight in the simple things. Sometimes I think she has more joy than I do and she doesn't know Christ. How sad."

Maybe it's just the fact that she's still a baby and the entire world is still brand new to her, but nonetheless this served as reminder to me that if we allow ourselves the opportunity to be still, we too can have the joy of a child. Charlee takes pleasure in such things as water bottles, tags, glasses and even her food. I am too often hurried causing me to miss much of what God has for me to enjoy. I miss so much because I'm always seeking to stay busy, in a way afraid of having moments of stillness. Does busyness glorify the Lord? Most of the time, I would say the answer to that question is, "No," because my busyness distracts me from the Lord. So, if my sole purpose in existing is to glorify God, I need to constantly check myself and my priorities. I believe Satan has created so much busyness today because it distracts us from the God we are called to love and serve. And then, when we do take the time to be still we often feel guilty...another way Satan thwarts us and keeps us from peace.

Enough rambling for now... My prayer as Charlee's Mama is that she will continue to find joy in the simple things and, Lord willing, that one day she would experience the joy of resting in Christ as her Savior. And thank you, Lord, that you continue to use this little girl to understand Your truths in new ways.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Our Goofy Girl

Charlee does this thing where she cocks her head to one side or the other randomly. We haven't been able to come up with an explanation for this behavior...we've simply accepted the fact that she's goofy. Today's lunch is a great example... Each time I fed her a spoonful of delicious chicken and vegetables she would immediately cock her head to the left until she was ready for another bite...see evidence below. What was this about? I have no idea, but it sure had me laughing...and, of course, I'm sure that's why she continued for the duration of her lunch. This child loves to gain a response! =) Thank you, Lord, for blessing me with this little girl who brings so many more laughs into my life than I could have imagined possible. And please, keep 'em coming! =)

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Home again, home again...

Well, we're now home...back to the dry heat as we like to call it...I suppose that makes it sound like maybe it's not as bad as it feels! =) Anyway, Charlee was such a trooper yesterday. We had quite the day of travelling and she was a champ the whole time! I tell you what, this child does not want to miss a thing. We left Ogallala at about 3:45pm which put us at the airport at about 7:00pm for our flight that was to depart at 9:35pm. Well, upon checking our bags we were told that the flight was delayed until 10:35pm. Not too bad we thought, but then once we got to the gate it became 11:10pm...ugh!!! Thankfully, the time passed fairly quickly when we discovered that Brandon was on our flight. So, while hanging out with him we found out that his mom was also on our flight. She came over and enjoyed meeting Charlee and then pushing her around in the stroller in the airport. What a blessing! Charlee slept for a bit (maybe 20 minutes) in the airport. Finally, we boarded and arrived in Phoenix at about 11:30pm. Amazingly, Charlee didn't sleep a wink on the plane. I'm telling you this child does not want to miss anything!! When all was said and done we didn't get home until about 1:00am.

So, here we are back to our little life in Phoenix. Thank you Grandma and Grandpa Saunders for a wonderful vacation to are such a blessing to all of us. Charlee misses you already! We love you!!!

Saturday, July 5, 2008

People to meet, places to go, things to see...

Today was another relaxing day here in Ogallala…home of the good life! We had a lazy Saturday morning and then Mom made us go back down to “the store” (aka Humphreys) because we forgot to get pictures when we were there the other day. Mom’s kinda getting’ a little crazy wanting to take pictures everywhere we go, but she tells me that I’ll appreciate it one day when I’m older. So, we headed back down to the store to get some pics with Penny who works with Grandpa. Then, we had to get some pics outside in front of the store, too.




After we were finally done taking pictures here we were hungry and went to Taco John’s for lunch. This is one of Dad’s favorites, too. I got to meet Taco Jan and Taco Larry…some more nice folks. It’s so different here because it doesn’t matter where we go we always see someone that Dad or Grandma and Grandpa know. They must just be some really popular, well-liked people. It seems like everyone already knew that I was coming to town…apparently Grandma and Grandpa were pretty excited for my arrival and told everyone they knew! That’s okay with me though since, according to Mom, I’m a social butterfly. =)

Later in the day some folks named Roger and Judy stopped by to meet me, too. They brought me a special bath towel that Judy made especially for me. It’s so cool, especially since I’ve outgrown the one we have at home. I can’t wait to use it when we get back to Phoenix. After they left Mom, Dad and I left and went a few streets over to Darby and Erica’s house to visit with them. Darby and Erica are good friends of Dad’s…he’s known them a very long time. They have a little girl names Sadie who’s only about 4 months old…she’s quite the cute little girl, but she still sleeps a lot so I didn’t get to play with her this time.

I think that covers all the folks I got to meet today…goodness the list just keeps getting longer as the days go by! =)

Well, that's all for now...I'm exhausted!

Friday, July 4, 2008

The 4th of July

Today we had lunch at Peking Chinese Restaurant where I got to meet Ling and Tier, the owners. They were excited to meet me for the first time. It’s so cool because Ling always knows exactly what Grandma, Grandpa and Dad are going to order. Ling even knows to bring Dad his Chinese Dr. Pepper. I didn’t get to sample the food, but I did decide that since everyone else was eating I needed to be eating, too. I couldn’t wait to get home to eat…I insisted upon having my mixed veggies with everyone else. Here’s me and Ling…I really liked her necklace…



Our next big event this day was my “photo shoot” as Miss America. Mom and Dad got a little carried away with this one, but they were determined to get some cute shots of me in my patriotic attire. So, here are a couple of the pics we took…






Oh, and the biggest excitement today is that Mom and Dad realized that I’m getting my first tooth. I was trying to get the point across to her earlier when I was a little fussy for my last nap, but she just didn’t quite catch on. So, a little bit later she went and stuck her fingers in my mouth and lo and behold she found the tooth. Boy, did she think that was cool! I’m not sure why all the excitement because I kind of tend to think of it as an annoyance more than anything, but apparently it’s pretty cool to get teeth. So, Grandma and Grandpa went to the store to get me some Orajel so that I don’t get too uncomfortable, but so far I haven’t had to use any. Grandma thought it was pretty cool, too, that I got to have one of my “firsts” while I was here since they don’t get to see many of them since we live so far away.

After dinner tonight I played and played and played some more. I was like the Energizer Bunny! I didn’t go to sleep until 10:00pm. Grandpa was making me laugh so hard. He kept playing “monster” under my play mat and I thought it was pretty funny. He’s a goofy guy! I laughed and laughed and laughed some more!



Thursday, July 3, 2008

Kisses all around...

Kisses from Grandpa...

Kisses from my Papa...

Kisses from Grandma...

I'm so loved!!!

A day in the life...

July 3, 2008

Today we began making the rounds in town. For some reason Grandma and Grandpa think it’s really fun to show me off. I don’t know if I’m really that cute, but they sure think so. So first, we went to Humphreys Auto Parts Store (that’s the store Grandpa Saunders runs). Next we headed to Buenz (the big drug store in town) and then to Safeway to stock up on some food and diapers for me.

Later in the day (after I recovered from the morning adventures with a good nap) we went up to the hospital to meet some more people there. This was the first time I’d been in a hospital since I was born. Gosh, I sure have grown up a bit since the last time. We met Joel Engdahl who’s a really good friend of Grandma and Grandpa’s. He carried me around his office for a bit and I’d have to agree that he’s a pretty cool guy. He’s a physical therapist and has helped Grandma a whole bunch with her recovery after her knee surgery. Then we walked right next door and sat with Grandpa for a little bit while he got his infusion. I’m not exactly sure what that means, but it’s something he has to get done to help keep his cancer away. Everyone at the hospital really enjoyed meeting me.

I just have to add a little side note to explain the picture below. So, Grandma has this really pretty, shiny bracelet and I just had to get my hands on it. I really like to swing it around and bang it on things, but boy oh boy when I put it in my mouth I was majorly surprised. It does not taste good at all, which really surprised me since it’s so pretty. I made some really terrible faces about it for a long time afterwards. Gosh, I just don’t know why Grandma has such a pretty bracelet that just tastes so yucky. Doesn’t make a whole lot of sense to me!

Later in the day, Grandpa decided to be really goofy (well, he's always goofy, but this was especially goofy!)...he stole my hair bow and thought he'd see how it looked in his hair. What do you think? I think they're probably best suited for little girls. =)

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Ogallala here I come...

July 2, 2008

Hi...Charlee here! Today was a big day for me. I made my first trip out to Ogallala, Nebraska to visit my Grandma and Grandpa Saunders. Mama, Papa and I flew from Phoenix to Denver where Grandma and Grandpa were eagerly awaiting our arrival (well, probably mostly my arrival). I slept most of the way in Mama's arms cuz it was a really early flight and I was pooped!

Uncle Todd, Aunt Amy and Cousin Sutton drove up from Colorado Springs to meet us for lunch at Bennigan’s near the airport. We didn’t have much time to visit with Uncle Todd, Aunt Amy and Sutton, but we’ll take what we can get! My cousin Sutton is such a big boy now…he tells me he just turned 2 a little while ago. This was the first time I got to meet him and it sure was fun. I was pretty impressed with him because he makes even louder noises than I do. Sutton seemed to think I was a pretty cute little girl and even helped Grandma push me around in the stroller. I can’t wait till I’m a little bit older and can really play with my cousin.

Proud Parents!

Proud Grandparents!

After a 3 hour ride in the car, we arrived in Ogallala, NE…home of “the good life” (don’t know whether or not that’s actually true, but that’s what the sign says that welcomes you to town).

Needless to say, I was so happy to finally be in Ogallala. Shortly upon arriving, I became fast friends with Mr. Penguin. I explained to him all about my travel day and all the friends I made along the way.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

A first for me!

Today I experienced a first in my life. When I went to pick up Charlee from her day with Grandma Brockhaus, the two of them were swimming in the pool. After getting out of the pool and drying off, I was standing in the kitchen holding Charlee who was wearing simply a towel. I was encouraging her to drink some refreshingly chilled water from her sippy cup thinking it would help her cool off. Of course, in the process of making this happen, cold water spilled down her bare tummy as well as my leg. With 110 degree heat, that's not something that bothered me. Oh, but then our beautiful, "innocent" child allowed me to experience something I've never experienced before...nor was I ever intending to experience! Little Charlee Elyse peed on me! I'm standing there suddenly thinking to myself, "Um, that's not water! Grandma, I'm gonna need a change of clothes!"

All this to say just one simple thing...I've never been so humbled as I have been since becoming a mom. Here I am coming to pick up my daughter after spending my one day a week in the corporate world back where I worked before Charlee came along and I am welcomed home by a daughter who pees on me. Jobs in the corporate world do not involve spit-up, diaper rash, making bottles, etc. Though often quite stressful, they are somewhat more glamourous than being a mom. Being a mom is the most difficult job I have ever had (and ever intend to have!), yet it is by far the most rewarding position I've ever held and I wouldn't trade being peed on for the world. God has so blessed me and Adam by choosing us to be Charlee's mama and papa. Thank you Lord for humbling us over and over again as you open our eyes to the fact that we can control nothing in this life and that's okay! Thank you Charlee for allowing me the opportunity to work for you!!! =) Your mama and papa love you so very much!

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Bathtime like a big girl...

So, we finally removed the "sling" from Charlee's bathtub because she's just grown so much. I thought she liked bath time before, but it wasn't nearly as fun before as it is now with TOYS! Plus, we're learning to splash in the water...too fun!
There's no water and she's still playing! =)

Lazy Sunday afternoon

Little Miss Charlee loves the water! Here she is cruising Grandma and Grandpa Brockhaus' pool.
Mama just can't resist takin' a bite of those cute lil' toes!
Just makin' sure Grandpa's still got all his teeth...

Thursday, June 19, 2008

All Charlee's names...

Okay, so today I was talking to Charlee and thought to myself, "Gosh, I never call this child by her actual name...she's never going to know who she is!" So, I thought it would be fun to record all the names Adam and I call Charlee aside from the name we gave her. If I remember them all, this will be a long they are in no particular order...

  • Charlee Bean (my personal favorite) =)
  • Charlee Brown
  • Lil' Miss
  • Stinky Pants
  • Lovey
  • Big Girl
  • Cheeks
  • Beautiful
  • Sugar
  • Punkin
  • Charlee E
  • Charles
  • Chuck
  • Peanut
  • Baby Cakes
  • Lil' Britches
  • Stink Pot
  • Goon
  • Booger
  • Precious
  • Beanie
  • Chubby Cheeks
  • Chunky Monkey
  • Shorty
  • Bean Sprout
  • Sweet Pea
  • Sweetheart
  • Charlee Girl
  • Thumper

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

8 Months Come and Gone...

Hi everyone! Welcome to our blog! I can't believe I'm finally creating a blog...something I've been wanting to do for over 8 months now...better late than never I suppose! So, I thought today was the perfect day to make my first entry. Today our little girl is 8 months old! I seriously cannot believe that so much time has already passed so quickly. I never thought it would go that fast!

Parenting has been the most amazing experience in my life thus far! Adam and I have learned so much already and Lord-willing we have years ahead of us to learn so much more. Becoming a parent has opened my eyes to my selfishness, which does not mean I am no longer selfish, it just means I can see it so much better now! I have learned so much about God and the way He feels about His children...the fact that we are all so loved and cherished as His image bearers. What an amazing truth to think about...that He loves me beyond any possible amount of love I could have for Charlee. Honestly, this seems impossible because I can't imagine there being a greater amount of love than my love for Adam and for Charlee, but that's the reality of the God we serve.

Being one who was never really into babies or children, becoming a mama has transformed me entirely. Now, don't get me wrong, there are still some snotty noses and grubby paws that I don't feel the need to have near me...what's changed is that I truly do see the blessing that children are. I see it in every little baby and child. I find myself smiling at babies and talking to them when I see them in the store, admiring their beauty and the simplicity of their lives as they take things in for the very first time. By His grace, God has shown me that life is a beautiful thing and every moment is to be cherished. I still have my moments, but Charlee has slowed my life down and caused me to enjoy the simple moments. My favorite parts of the day are going in to her room in the morning and seeing the most amazing grin on that little girl's face and then at night the three of us praying together as a family before we lay her down to sleep. Those are the things I cherish now and it's all because of that little girl who is sometimes cranky, sometimes cries and sometimes frustrates me. It's the simple pleasures of being a mom though that outweigh the trying moments. What's amazing is that it's the tough times that grow me, too, as I realize that I must be dependent on God.

So, it is our prayer, as it has been all along, that Charlee would grow to be dependent on the Lord and come to love the Lord with all her heart, with all her mind and with all her strength...all the days of her life.

Thank, you, little Charlee, for the joy you bring your Mama and Papa...don't you ever stop smiling! =)
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