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Monday, October 31, 2005


We won! We WON!!!

small mammals unite! The Golden Aardvark is ours!!!!!


Thursday, October 27, 2005

And it hits me

that I am Olivia's mom. The kind of adult she will become depends on the parenting that I give her. The childhood that she enjoys (or doesn't always enjoy) depends on the environment I raise her in.

She is one. She's a very big girl-- well not in size, but in personality -- and she has wants. I am realizing that I no longer have a baby in my arms, but a toddler who is testing her boundaries.

She has two kinds of boundaries. Her most limiting are her own personal boundaries. She still needs me to be around. She comes up to grab my legs while I cook or wash dishes. She heaps on the floor if I walk towards the door without her. She nurses when she's hungry or upset. She can't function without living inside her own boundaries.

The second set of boundaries Olivia is subject to are the boundaries that Rob and I enforce on her. Honestly, there really aren't that many of them. But the ones we have, we do our best to keep. My best example, and the most familiar to our readers since I've shared my woes in this area frequently, is how I respond to her in the middle of the night.

I know that people wake in the night. Of course they do, I do, older kids do, so Olivia will as well. My rule (though I've never told her the rule) is that I will come to her in the night if she wakes up and needs me. I will stay and help her fall back asleep either by nursing or rocking, but we will not get down on the floor, and we will not leave the room. Sometimes she points to the door, and I have to say, "No, it is night time." This consistent, but reasonable boundary has made it easier for all of us, even though it was really hard to get there in the first place. Olivia isn't afraid to go back to sleep because she has learned to trust that I will be there if she ever needs me. And I have learned to go quickly and patiently (at least most nights) because she gets scared at night, and all she needs is a little mom love.

Rob has learned to sleep though it.

When I started this post I had some deep theological connection that I intended to make. Something about the constancy of God, and how His laws are a curb to us. But since I wake up once a night, it is after 10:30 I can't remember what that original connection was.

All I can come up with is: Wow. Olivia is really big. And this isn't getting any simpler. But I keep learning how to love her more.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

I am obsessed with the sacraments

And if you're addicted like me, here's a good fix.

I love baptism.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Francis Schaeffer: Two Contents, Two Realities

"Evangelicals can fall into something that really is not very far from existential theology without knowing it. One form of such 'evangelical existentialism" is the attitude, if not the words, "Don't ask questions, just believe." This sort of attitude was always wrong, but it is doubly wrong today when we are surrounded with a monolithic consensus that divides reason from nonreason and always puts religious things in the area of nonreason. We must call each other away from this idea. It is not more spiritual to believe without asking questions. It is not more biblical. It is less biblical, and eventually it will be less spiritual, because the whole man will not be involved. We must be absolutely determined not to fall into the trap of saying or implying, 'Don't ask questions, just believe.' It must be the whole man who comes to understand that the gospel is truth and believes because he is convinced on the basis of good and sufficient reason that it is truth.


What we need to do is understand our age to be an age of very subtle religious and political manipulation, manipulation by cool communication, communication without content. And as we see all these things, we must lean against them. WE have a message of content; there is a system to Christianity. It is not only a system, true enough; it is not a dead scholasticism, true enough; but it is a system in that the person who accepts Christ as his Savior must do so in the midst of the understanding that prior to the creation of the world a personal God on the high level of Trinity existed. And if they 'accept Christ as their Savior' and do not understand that God exists as an infinite-personal God, and do not understand t hat man has been made in the image of God and has value, and do not understand that man's dilemma is not metaphysical because he is small but moral because man revolted against God in a space-time Fall, in all probability they are not saved. If we 'evangelize' by asking for such 'acceptance of Christ as Savior,' all we have done is to guarantee they will soon drift away and become hard to reach than ever. Not everybody must know everything--nobody knows everything; if we waited to be saved until we knew everything, nobody would ever be saved--but that is a very different thing from deliberately or thoughtlessly diminishing the content."

Monday, October 24, 2005

The cake

Originally uploaded by Devona.

"Happy Birthday to you!"

Originally uploaded by Devona.

"Happy Birthday dear Livi"

Originally uploaded by Devona.

"Hmmm, what could this be?"

Originally uploaded by Devona.

Rob is a parrot

Originally uploaded by Devona.
Not a Dead Parrot

"Uhm, Mom? There's no more cake on this plate."

Originally uploaded by Devona.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

One year ago..

on this day, at about 11 pm, I started having the contraction that brought our little Olivia into the world.

Now she can eat with a fork.

Where has the time gone?

Olivia will be one year old on Friday!

Monday, October 17, 2005

Olivia the pig!

Olivia the pig!
Originally uploaded by Devona.
Has anyone ever told you how hard it is to take pictures of kids? It is multiplied exponentially by each child.

But here is an adorable picture (posted especially for you Dad) of Olivia at her costume birthday party this past Saturday.

The other cuties in the picture are Connor, who's birthday is 15 days before Olivia's, and his older sister Danielle. Their mommy was so kind to open her house to us and all of the other munchkins from our playgroup. We had a double birthday bash, which was so much fun.

We played pin the nose on the pumpkin (the pumpkin ended up with one nose and 3 extra ears), ate cake until kids were barfing orange, and stayed up waaaaaaay past our bed times. We were a bunch of party animals, a party mermaid, and one party baseball player. :)

Birthday girl and boy!

Birthday girl and boy!
Originally uploaded by Devona.

The whole team!

The whole team!
Originally uploaded by Devona.
This is Olivia's whole play group in their costumes to celebrate Connor and Olivia's birthdays. We had so much fun.

The costumes only lasted about 15 minutes after this picture was taken. Hehe.

Tasty pumpkin cake

Tasty pumpkin cake
Originally uploaded by Devona.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Today's To Do List

Rob made me a list of things he wanted me to do today. When he gave it to me (after waking up at 6:30 with Liv) I edited it. I thought it was pretty funny, so I'm going to share it. Rob's notes are in regular type, mine are in italics:

Devona's List

  • Fill out rebate for wireless router, send in
  • Get "Programming Perl" by larry Wall @ Akron Library
  • When @ Library: Reserve Series 2 of The Office
  • Call the Postal Service and beat them up
  • Add light bulbs to shopping list-- I used the last one in the lamp upstairs
  • scrap this list and go back to bed
  • Find a new husband
  • Wait until 30 day trial period at new job is over and benefits kick in and accidentally run Rob over to collect on the insurance
  • Learn to drive stick shift properly (which he then added an arrow pointing to the space above my last note)
  • disregard all arrows
  • Go to store, buy stuff for spinach artichoke dip
  • Pay bills
  • Check oil in mom's car

It's Fall (or Autumn for our British Friends who laugh at us for calling it "Fall")

And I can't get through a chilly day without listening to these albums. Or these albums.

Over the Rhine is the perfect band for leaves changing in Ohio.

Go Mom!

Now that the news is official...

My Mommy is getting married to Steve. Yeah, Mom!

Please say a prayer the God will richly bless their marriage, which will be next summer.

Friday, October 07, 2005

Helping mom cook

Helping mom cook
Originally uploaded by Devona.
Here is the big girl, finding a glass casserole dish lid for me. She banged them together for a good ten minutes, too. Who would have thought that I'd be so tolerant of such racket, and not even stop and think how annoying it really is? I mean, I spend my days listening to an almost-toddler yell and bang and sing and drop things all day long, and I haven't grown tired of it yet.

I guess a mother's prayer is, "Lord, give me ears to only hear the important noises, and eyes to see every speck of dirt on the floor."

Believe it or not, I was three days away from my due date on this day, last year. Amazing! So much has been changing that I don't even remember what it was like before.


Olivia's 1st birthday!

Monday, October 03, 2005

My husband is the Man!

I'd just like to inform everyone about how amazing my husband is.

He started his new job today, and from the brief email I received it seems like all is going well. I'm so proud of him.

So if anyone has a moment today or tomorrow, drop Rob a line at robDOTbrazierATgmailDOTcom. Let him know how excited his wife is. :)