Wednesday, December 31, 2008

New Year's Resolutions?!

When I was younger, I made resolutions every year. And miserably failed to keep a single one: Read my bible every day for a year: didn't make it past one week; Run at least three times a week: ran around the neighborhood a grand total of once before realizing I hated running. You get the picture! As I grew older, every year I would respond to the age old question, "What's your resolution?" with a pat answer, "I don't make resolutions, because I will just break them!"

Yet again this year, I don't have a single resolution. However, I AM looking forward to returning to the gym consistently (not to run!). I have no set agenda, no weight-loss goals, no intention of going daily for 2 hours. That way, if I go once a week, I haven't broken my non-resolution!!

I am also looking forward to spending time investing in my marriage. I haven't set my heart on weekly date nights, or daily in depth conversations. I haven't even made a list of places to visit and things to do together this year. That way, if we go to NYC or have a monthly date or even just play a game of cards, I will be pleasantly surprised and excited!

Do you have any non-resolution resolutions?

Friday, December 26, 2008

Merry Christmas

Our family celebrations have only begun! They have been so much fun this year, in large part due to having Isabel. She has brought much joy and delight to everyone, despite the often crazy and overwhelming season. Our focus this year has truly been on family-Miguel and I didn't exchange gifts, the extended Turek family had a nice dinner together-no gifts, the Stega family is doing a white-elephant-type gift exchange, and the Barowski family chose names. I love that we have shifted gears from gift-giving to simply spending time with those we most enjoy. It truly was a Merry Christmas. Here are a few snapshots of our day.

#1-Isabel holding the gift SHE bought her daddy. She did ALL of her shopping on-line this year.
#2-Isabel, still in her PJs, holding the unwrapped iPod she picked out. Daddy was so surprised.
#3-Family photo with Isabel is her RL Christmas dress from her CAT (Crazy Aunt Turek).
#4-Tia Monica and Uncle McClain, loving on Isabel.

Friday, December 19, 2008


After Emily posted her eleven favorite movies, I decided to do the same. I LOVE movies, and probably watch way too many. Honestly, I end up forgetting 90% of the plots and 90% of the titles. Sad, but it means that when I re-watch the movies, I am always surprised by the endings! I wonder if I have an early onset of dementia??

Favorite Comedy: Tommy Boy–It takes me back to college-watching Tommy Boy, eating peanut M&Ms and drinking Diet Coke with Marie. Not to mention there are more quotable lines in that movie than just about any other I've watched. "Did I catch a niner in there??"

Favorite Drama: Fracture–I absolutely LOVE Sir Anthony Hopkins. He is amazingly talented, versatile, and a riveting actor. This movie left me guessing at every turn and was pretty clean (one quick fast-forward scene in the beginning) for an "R" rated movie.

Favorite Suspense: I hate suspense, with a passion! I could barely handle What Lies Beneath. Now, if we were talking books, I'd say "Misery" by Stephen King.

Favorite Action: The Last of the Mohicans–This is really a drama/war/action movie. But Daniel Day-Lewis is hot with long hair *wink* and the soundtrack is one of the best I've heard.

Favorite Martial Arts: Rush Hour–It makes me laugh, and I love the outtakes at the end.

Favorite Sci-Fi: Transformers–Does this count? I was ready to watch it again the second we walked out of the theater.

Favorite Sport: The Sandlot–Even though it's a "kids'" movie, it's cute, funny, and a classic summer baseball flick.

Favorite Indy: Bella–It’s sweet, and is my baby's name sake...what more could you want?

Favorite Romantic Comedy: You’ve Got Mail–I have to agree with Emily. F-O-X, enough said.

Favorite Disney: Beauty and the Beast OR Lion King–I watched Lion King after returning from Africa. The scenery is striking and took me back to the plains.

Favorite War: Schindler's List: I saw this in high school, and cried my way through it. It is a very difficult watch, but was truly worth the investment of time and emotions.

Thursday, December 18, 2008


This is one of the most unique (and delicious) cheesecakes I have ever had or made:
(Click on the picture to view the recipe).

One Month

It is hard to remember what daily life was like before Isabel arrived. I have faint memories of working full-time, rushing out to my part-time job, making quick and easy meals, and collapsing from exhausting at 9:00. Now, I feed Isabel full-time, rush home from my part-time job, Miguel makes quick and easy meals, and I collapse from exhaustion at 9:00...only to wake up at 10:00 to feed her one last time! =) But I wouldn't trade it all for the world!!

Today was her one month appointment; time has truly flown by. I have enjoyed every single moment with Isabel. She weighed in at 8 pounds, 8 ounces and measured 21.75 inches. Our baby girl has grown so much. I wish she would stay little forever.
(Isabel after her bath, on the blanket that Auntie Em made her. It's so soft and fluffy! Isabel loved being snuggled in it.)

Saturday, December 13, 2008

between fear and faith

I vacillate easily, quickly, and unexpectedly between fear and faith. Fear of the unknown versus faith in the One who knows. Over the last five days, God has directed our steps down a path we never could have imagined. Miguel lost his job on Thursday, just two weeks after I handed in my resignation and a mere three weeks after the birth of our baby girl. My initial response was one of intense fear, followed by many tears and questions. Questions of "What" and "How" and "Why" fill my mind. What are we going to do without insurance and income? How are we going to pay our mortgage and other bills? Why would God time things in this manner?

The answers are not clear; the path appears rocky and scary. But, one answer resonates in my heart, "I am causing you to be dependent upon Me alone-for answers, for protection, for providence." Today, I have faith in that calling. Tomorrow, I might not. Yes, my faith is weak and my fear is great. But my prayer is that, against all hope, I will believe, like Abraham, that He who promised is faithful.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008


...of a new mom.

1. We put Isabel in her crib starting night #1, AND we turned off the monitor.
2. I only use a sleep positioner so that Isabel won't get a flat head.
3. When she cries, I laugh. Her cries are so sweet.
4. I am convinced that she doesn't sleep well after her 4:00 feeding because she knows Miguel is home. She loves to be held by her daddy.
5. At times, I really do think she's goofy looking.

Ok, ladies, time to spill!

Monday, December 01, 2008

"Common" Mercies

Today's Morning and Evening really ministered to me in my current situation.

"Let's praise God for common mercies...for eyes to watch the sun, for health and strength to be physically active, for the bread we eat, for the clothes we wear...for freedom, for friends, for family and comforts...But, beloved, the sweetest and loudest note in our songs of praise should be of redeeming love...let the new month begin with a new song."

I realized that I have much to be thankful for, much to praise my Savior for:

1. A beautiful baby girl who is healthy, a great sleeper, and great eater
2. A husband who loves us so much that he works his tail off to ensure that I am able to stay home full-time
3. Amazing girlfriends!!!!!!
4. I've only made one meal in 11 days

How about you? What "common" mercies are you enjoying today?