Wednesday, December 31, 2008

And the winner is...

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

We had a fantastic Christmas with our families this year. Lincoln was very cute, albeit somewhat oblivious. But Griffin definitely 'got it' this year. His famous quote this year, prior to opening most of his presents was, "I wonder what it is!" Yep. It's definitely fun to have kids at Christmas.

One of my most favorite gifts to give this year was pictures of our family taken by our friend, Julie. We did a photo shoot back in the fall with her, but had to keep it secret since we planned on giving pics to our families at Christmas. She did an amazing job and we were so pleased.

Go here to see more of our photo shoot.

And now for the news you've been waiting for. Thanks to all of you who gave such great ideas for my Christmas list. I considered many of them and am already formulating my list for next year.

But I told you there would be a winner and I'm a girl of my word. And so, the winner is....


My cousin Megan e-mailed me a list of some great suggestions. She's a mom of three and fighting the 'frumpy mom' syndrome with her christmas list this year...running shoes, ipod, balance ball, etc. She got me thinking about how I can do the same. Since a gym membership isn't possible at this point, and I hate aerobics, I tried to think of the next best thing to motivate me to get my move during the long cold months here in NY.

And so I asked for DDR. Yep. Dance-Dance-Revolution. That's how I'm gonna get my groooove on. And thanks to my mom for getting it for me!

I also promised that I would dedicate a post to the winner. And I'm gonna do it. But New Year's celebrations are calling. So stay tuned for my post of love sometime very soon!

Happy New Year, you guys!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

three and a half months

Lincoln at three and a half months

Griffin at three and a half months

Do you think they might be brothers?

**Come back soon to find out who the grand prize winner is in my "Help me with my list" contest. I'm pretty excited about it!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

help a girl out...

It's my least favorite part of Christmas and it's a dilemma I've had for years. It's not the wrapping or the baking or even the shopping. It's not writing Christmas cards (I don't) or gaining those nasty holiday pounds (I just do).

I hate making my wish list.

There. I said it. I feel better just admitting it.

The last time I remember really knowing what I wanted for Christmas was the year I asked for a real microphone, complete with mike stand. I think I was 9.

It's not that I'm Grinchy. I really love Christmas. And believe me, it's not that I don't want anything. I really do.

I just can't figure out what it is that I do want. I think I might need therapy.

Here's my list so far:
Coldplay's Viva la Vida
a shower radio

Sigh. Not exactly your super exciting Christmas list.

Here's where you come in. I need to know what you think I should want for Christmas. Maybe it's something that's on your list. Or was last year. Maybe it's a book that you've read, or a kitchen gadget that has changed your life, or a piece of clothing that is a must-have. Whatever it may be, leave a comment and help a girl out!

I was trying to think of a prize to give to the winner, and I'm coming up short there too. So, if you are the lifeline that leads me to my favorite Christmas gift this year, here's what I'll do. I promise to dedicate an entire post to you--singing your praises and letting the world know why I love you.

So, get a commenting...

p.s. To be fair, I should let you all know, that I already have an early Christmas present that I absolutely loooooove. Check out these beauties from Pottery Barn:

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Run a 5K. Check.

Well, not really a 5k. It was actually an 8k, but I think that works.

About a week after this post about my adventure list, my brother-in-law Tim called and asked if we wanted to come to Buffalo for Thanksgiving. And then, on a side-note, he added that if we did, he and I could run an 8k on Thanksgiving Day together.

Well, how could I say no? Afterall, I could get points for two things: getting back into an exercise routine and running a race...numbers 3 and 5 on my list.

And so I did. I started off well with the training, but toward the end, I changed my training strategy: I didn't. That way my muscles wouldn't be sore. Made sense to me.

So, on Thanksgiving morn, we joined over 10,000 people running the streets of Buffalo. We were surrounded by people in a variety of costumes, including a flock of flamingos and a 19 person turkey. And although the turkey train finished before us, I was happy with our finish time considering my aforementioned training strategy...and did I mention I just had a baby?

By the way, this is a great way to justify stuffing your face later on in the day...not that I've ever needed a reason.

Monday, November 24, 2008


I'm thankful for a son who is thankful for this:

I'm also thankful for:

Happy Birthday, Wes.
You light up our world with your love for us.
We love you.

Kaley and your boys

Saturday, November 15, 2008

sometimes a girl's gotta brag...

For those of you who are unfamiliar with my cvs obsession, you can read about it here. It's calmed down quite a bit since that post, but I still heart the deals I get there.

Just had to share my latest cvs haul with you guys. Check it out. I got all this for a whopping $2.55 plus I received $7.59 in Extra Bucks to use on my next purchase.
Yep. You counted correctly. That would be eight boxes of cereal. Muahahaha! Ahem.

If you want to find out more about the wonderful world of cvs savings (and other fine deals), I suggest you click here, here, and here. I'd be glad to help you get started as well.

Take this as your warning, though. It will change your life.

And you'll have to get a pantry.

Who's gonna join me?

Thursday, November 6, 2008

haaaaappy birthday, deeeeaaaar kaley....

yesterday was my birthday and here is how i celebrated.

what does this say about me?

*in preparation for the day, i went here and signed up for every possible birthday freebie i could find.

* my chosen method of relaxation during the day was climbing into bed with a hot cup of coffee and a big stack of coupons to clip.

*scored a free magazine subscription online.

*when i opened my card from my husband, there was a cvs extrabuck inside and several cvs coupons. and this made me very happy.

*to celebrate, we went shopping at old navy where they are having great deals and i used a $10 off coupon old navy had sent me for my birthday.

*then, i headed over to bath and body works and got about $20 worth of stuff for $3.

*we finished off the evening at cold stone creamery enjoying my free birthday bowl of peanut buttery yumminess. (oh, wes has a birthday in november too, so he got a free bowl as well. we did break down and buy griffin his own bowl, however...cotton candy ice cream with gummy bears. it's a wonder he ever went to sleep last night.)

oh...and i did find a few minutes of peace and quiet for this and my current read: was a good day.

Monday, October 27, 2008

my adventure list

I think this newborn thing has affected my competitive bone. I am typically a highly competitive person. Case in point: When I was in labor with Griffin, I lamented over the fact that I was not surrounded by other women in labor because then we could have a contest. I was sure that would be enough to spur me on to a very short labor.

My current complacency has been revealed to me by a contest that I am currently involved in and have put forth zero effort to win. It's just not at the top of my priority list. Wait...I don't even have a priority list.

Well, it's time for a change. (No, that statement was not meant to be a political reference...politics are even lower on my pseudo-priority list.) Here is the situation in a nutshell:

I am involved in a monthly moms of preschoolers meeting called MOPS. We are all taking part in a contest this year, in which the participants can earn points for carrying out various good deeds such as making a meal for another mom, bringing a guest to MOPS, attending events, etc. The table with the most points at the end of the year will all go out to eat, while the table with the least points will watch their kids. Should be motivation, right?

There is a fun aspect to this contest that I've been pondering for a while. It's called the adventure list. We were all encouraged to write a list of activities or accomplishments that we would like to conquer over the next year. We would then earn points for each as we checked them off the list.

Lincoln was only two weeks old when we were first asked to create this list. At that point, my list looked like this:
change out of my pajamas
sleep some more

Adventure held a different meaning during that very foggy time in life. Even still, I earned very few points.

Now that the fog has started to lift, I feel like it would be fun to create a true adventure list for my upcoming year. I like challenges and by putting them into writing, I may actually accomplish a few. And occasionally get out of my pajamas.

So, here goes. I thought I would categorize them by the amount of effort required, starting with the least and ending with the greatest.

1) Finish reading a book. I currently have three in process. Or is it 5?

2) Begin journaling again. I miss that.

3) Get back into an exercise routine. Walking to the mailbox does not count.

4) Sew covers on those throw pillows I bought two years ago. Wait...does this require learning to sew?

5) Run a 5K. Who wants to join me?

6) Get away for a night with my husband. Yes, this requires more effort than running a 5K.

7) Plan another get-together with my L.U. girls. Whaddya say, Beckie, Leigh Anne, Kelley, and Sarah?

8) _______ _______ _____ ____________. This one I'd rather not post for all the world to see. Oooh...don't you wish you knew?

9) Attempt to get something published. Attempt being the key word. And pressing 'publish post' does not count.

10) Buy a house. I better get extra points for this one.

So, there you have it. My goal is not to accomplish all, but to motivate myself to accomplish some. I'll be sure to keep you posted!

11) Share cute pictures of my children with the world.

These gotta be worth some points.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

One month old! (plus a couple weeks)

Six weeks ago tonight, I was feverishly keeping track of contractions and hoping that this was the real deal. And yep, it sure was...check out the proof:

I'm planning on trying really, really hard to keep track of milestones with the same passion that I did with my firstborn child. So, in an effort to keep myself accountable, I've decided to blog about Lincoln's monthly growth. That way, you can yell at me if I haven't blogged about him in a while. (As you can see, I'm already running late...) Here goes:

Month 1:
Wow, Lincoln, it is hard to believe that you are already a month old! So far, you have been such an easy baby--let's keep that up, ok? Here are a few memories from your first month of life:

*It's been so fun to watch Griffin with you, Lincoln. He loves you soo much! He runs to you every time you cry and tries to make it better with your binky. He tries to reassure you by saying, "It's Ok, Lincoln." (It took him a while to realize that your name wasn't Baby Bob--but he's caught on now!) Every time he catches you spitting up, he says, "Oh, Buddy!" (I think he got that from Mommy...) And when you are crying in the car, he sings "Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star" to try to calm you down. Sometimes we have to help him slow down and help him be more gentle with you--but it's just because he gets so excited when you are around!

*You went to your first concert this month. (Mommy and Daddy like to get our kids 'cultured' young.) It was our youth group's kick-off event with the Proxy, Nevertheless, and Flyleaf. We didn't take your gentle eardrums into the actual concert, however--just right outside the doors. You seemed to enjoy it.

*Right before you turned one month old, you started giving us the biggest smiles. I couldn't believe it! We loooove to watch you smile. You are a very happy kid.

*You are one loud sleeper! After one sleepless night, Mommy and Daddy got smart and moved you right outside the door, where we couldn't hear you as well. We also discovered that you sleep better in your carseat. You've had a stuffy nose for a while, so it seemed to help with your congestion too. Now, you usually only wake us up around 3 am and 6:30 am--and that's good with me!

*Everyone says you look like someone different. For a while, it was your Uncle Ryan. Then they thought you looked more like an Ehret. Then, several people at church said you look like Papa Hill. Recently, more people have been saying you look like Griffin. I've decided that when your eyes are closed you look more like a Hill and when they are open, you look more like an Ehret. I guess we'll have to wait and see!

It is hard for me to believe how fast the time is flying already. I'm doing my best to enjoy every minute--even the 3 am ones. But, I also can't wait to watch you grow. We have so much to look forward to. I love that we get to watch another little life grow before our very eyes.

We love you, little Lincoln! (or Winkin, as Griffin says it)

Monday, October 6, 2008

domestic goddess i am not...

...but occasionally I make an attempt at appearing to be one. this past saturday, i spent all day peeling, cooking, and canning applesauce...

...with A LOT of help from her (my mother-in-law)--ok she did most of the work...

...and some help from him...

...and some more help from him (papa ehret, not lincoln)...

are you impressed?

Friday, September 26, 2008


what you'd hear if you had bugged our house over the past several weeks

Griffin, please take your feet off of Lincoln's head.

Griffin, please don't throw peanut butter sandwiches at your brother. That's nice that you were trying to feed him, but he only drinks milk right now.

Griffin, please stop trying to close Lincoln's eyes during prayer.

Griffin, you really should not try to pick Lincoln up by his ankles.

Griffin, please take that newspaper off of Lincoln's face.

what you'd see:

a little boy who loves his brother verrrrrry much,
who runs to check on him whenever he hears him cry,
who kisses and hugs him multiple times a day,
who sings a medley of songs to him to help him sleep, namely:
Jesus Loves Me, Twinkle, Twinkle Wittle Sar,
and Shot through the Heart by Bon Jovi (his father is responsible for the latter),
who loves to help mommy change his diaper,
who can't wait for his brother to grow and play with him!

(his mommy is pretty excited about that too.)

Monday, September 22, 2008

1000 words

In an effort to stay in connection with you all during this 'newborn' season of life, I've decided to commit to writing less wordy/more picture-y blogs for the time being. They say a picture is worth a thousand words, right? Here are my 3000 words for the day:

Griffin and I celebrated the beginning of fall with pumpkin window cling-ons.
(Can we say, "Mommy used to be an elementary teacher?")

Then, we headed to the local farm market, where
Griffin picked out his very own pumpkin.

...and then, of course, we had to buy an apple turnover and a jug
of cider in order to truly honor the season.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008


Our firstborn son just left to go blueberry picking with our landlords and #2 is sitting contentedly nearby, and will soon be napping, and I find myself facing the age-old mystery of motherhood: what to do next??!!

And so I blog.

Meanwhile, the lunch dishes still sit on the table, and the laundry piles mock me, and the fall decorations call out to me to pull them from their boxes, and the list goes on...

And yet I blog.

I guess it's for the same reason that we take vacations. Unnecessary? Yes. Useless? No.

I guess I am considering this more of a therapy session than a blog. I have been pondering the priorities of motherhood the past couple days and realizing that newborns completely reshape them when they arrive.

It's interesting how it all works. I lived in the nesting stage for months while I was pregnant. I constantly felt the urge to clean and organize and plan (and even cook occasionally)--and spent a good part of my time doing so.

Then it all changed in an instant. This little life entered my world and all such priorities escaped out the window. I am lucky if I find time to shower in the day--cleaning is waaaaay down on the list. I remember coming to the realization when Griffin was first born that I had become a speed eater. I considered eating a waste of precious time and so gobbled my food down as quickly as possible so as to move on to actually accomplish something of value.

By nature, I am task-oriented. I am most content when I have a well-checked off list at the end of the day. But yesterday, I came to the realization that this 'need to accomplish' is not an option at this time in my life. As a mom of two boys, each with their own needs, my to-do list doesn't even get written.

So, I am faced with two options:
1) Feel sorry for myself and long for the day when things return to 'normal' (as I did for most of the day yesterday).
2) Find a way to reframe my priorities during this season of life.

I'm opting for number 2.

I'm realizing that this stage in life is a lot more about being than doing. I spend about 6-7 hours of my day feeding, burping, and changing the baby. I can mourn my time lost during this time or recognize that simply being with my son is a gift--for me and for him.

I also could spend the rest of my day trying to make up for time lost by catching up on those check marks. Or I could

i have to laugh. i got distracted from completing this yesterday and i have no idea what i was going to say next. i think that may be exactly what i was trying to say. i may or may not complete anything--and that's ok.

now, if you will excuse me...i'm going to put a movie on while my boys nap. and i may or may not complete it before i fall sound asleep.

Monday, September 8, 2008

I'm Baaaa-ack!

May it be known that Kaley is officially returning to the land of the living. She may doze off occasionally, but she is alive and well.

I thought I would mark this occasion with the post you have all been waiting for--the birth story! Let's just get one thing straight before I start. If there is one thing that every woman who has ever endured labor has earned, it is the right to share every single nitty gritty detail of the birth story with anyone who is within ear shot--as many times as she would like.

Fortunately for you, you are reading this post, so you may opt out of enduring every little detail. Humor me, though, and post a comment whether you read it all or not. All you really have to say is something to the tune of, "Wow, Kaley, you are the woman!" and I will assume that you did indeed read the whole thing.

Now, where shall we begin? Oh yes--5:30 am on Thursday, August 28:

5:30 am: wake up early with typical pregnancy discomfort. Decide to get up and enjoy one of my final quiet mornings on the porch. Write this in my prayer journal: Dr's appointment today. I've found myself really wishing I would go into labor this weekend. If I don't, I will probably be induced next week. You know my heart's desires, Lord Jesus, and I know You delight in giving them to me. I trust Your good hand!

10 am: drop Griffin off at his cousin's house while I head to my dr's appointment a couple blocks away.

10:15 am: dr's appointment. I am still 2 cm dilated (have been all week) and about 50% effaced. Doctor Miller says she does not think I will go in the next couple days. Oh and she will be out of town this weekend. Leave feeling pretty discouraged.

11 am: stop at farmer's market up the street. Buy ripe cantaloupe. Bad idea.

11:15 am: return to my sister's house to hang out with Griff and kids while I wait to go to my non-stress test at 1:30. Let Wes and my sister and brother in law know that I will probably not be going into labor anytime soon. Fight back tears.

noon: Griffin announces to his cousins that he wants 'Baby Bob' (his nickname) to come out right now! Me too, Griffin. Me too.

1 pm: discover a parking ticket on my car. Bummer of a day.

1:10 pm: stop at Dunkin Donuts for a donut and coffee. (Dr's orders--gotta eat something sweet so the baby will move during the non stress test!)

1:30 pm: pull into parking lot for appointment and feel a very strong braxton-hicks contraction. Hmmm? But no, it couldn't be.

1:45 pm: nurse points out two contractions during my non stress test. They are about 10 minutes apart.

2:15 pm: make a run to Walgreen's (free stuff!), Toys R Us, and Price Chopper. Oh--and to pay off my parking ticket. (The fee goes up $5 every week--and we might be a little distracted this week!) Start timing contractions. Still about 10 minutes apart.

3 pm: return to my sister's house. Call Wes and my mom to let them know that I think I may be having contractions, but they are really not strong. What does that mean?

3:15 pm: decide to go for a walk since Griffin is napping and I want to try to keep the contractions coming. Find myself walking on Lincoln Avenue. Is this a sign??! Contractions seem to increase, but still are not very strong.

4 pm: decide I should head home since my bags are there. Keep timing while I drive home. Still about 10 minutes apart.

6 pm: Wes gets home and I am feeling discouraged. Contractions are very sporadic and still not intense. Starting to think this is false labor. Google 'false labor'.

6:30 pm: decide to make dinner--spinach calzones from my friend Anca (yummy!) and corn from the farmer's market. Contractions are now coming more regularly and about 6 minutes apart. According to google, this is a good sign. Still not intense.

7 pm: our landlords pull into the driveway after being gone for a week. Didn't know they were coming home! Finish dinner and send Griffin over to hang out with Grandma Mar and Papa Nick. Fill them in on the situation and ask if Griffin could stay over night if need be.

8 pm: contractions still not intense, but are about 4 minutes apart. Wes decides to pack the car, calling upstairs to check up on me quite frequently.

9 pm: head next door to talk with our landlord, who is a nurse. Let her know that contractions are about 3 minutes apart, but are not intense and ask what we should do? We finally decide to just take the plunge and head to the hospital. We leave a tearful Griffin behind, but know he is in good hands.

9:30 pm: head to the hospital, meanwhile calling both of our parents and letting them know. Tell them we will call if things progress. Contractions seem to slow down, but get more intense. Why can't they just follow the rules??!

10 pm: arrive at emergency room, feeling all eyes on the pregnant lady as I walk into the room. I know what they are thinking--why is she so calm? Indeed, my contractions come even more slowly now.
still smiling

10:30 pm: nurse gives me a knowing glance when she sees that I am far too calm to be in actual labor. Is this your first baby? she asks, quite smugly. I am ready to turn around and head home. I am now only 3 cm dilated and 70% effaced. We call the family and tell them to stay home. Looks like it's going to be a long night. Try to watch news coverage of Barack Obama's speech.

11:30 pm: shift change. New nurse is someone we know from church. Contractions are becoming stronger and I ask Wes to rub my back and breathe with me. Maybe this is the real thing? Take a walk to go look at the babies in the nursery. Have to stop multiple times to breathe and begin to feel nauseous. Oh yeah--this is what real contractions feel like. Darn.

12 am: ask Wes to go get the nurse to come check me. Feel a little silly, but I do not want to miss my window for an epidural. Nurse announces with a great deal of surprise that I am 8 cm dilated. Does that mean I won't get an epidural? I ask with dismay. We'll see what we can do, says the nurse. That is code for Not a chance, honey. (Especially since I have not gotten lab tests done, do not have an IV, have not been taken to the birthing room, and the call still has to been made to the anesthesiologist. I'm no dummy.) Wes asks if we should call family. YES is the quick response.

12:10 am: nurses swarm into the room to get me moved into the birthing room and ready to deliver. This is really happening. No turning back now.

12:20 am: someone in green enters the room and approaches my bed. Well, I am surprised to see you here! says Dr. Miller. I feel a rush of relief, knowing that she has not left town yet. I am so glad to see you, Dr. Miller! I whisper gratefully.

12:30 am: Dr. Miller announces that I am fully dilated and this baby is about to be born. Is she just saying that to make me feel better? I wonder. Dr. Miller, Julie (our nurse), and Wes begin to praise and encourage me to fight through the pain. It doesn't take long before Dr. Miller tells Wes to take a look at his son's head. Seriously? I think. It can't be.

12:51 am: LINCOLN PARKER EHRET ENTERS OUR WORLD. He is more beautiful than I could have imagined with his newborn cry and head of brown hair. Exhilaration. Euphoria. Awe. No word even touches the emotion and gratitude of that moment.

(unfortunately, our camera died shortly after this and I haven't gotten any of the pictures my family took yet...)

1:15 am: Both of our parents and my sister and brother join us to meet our son and hear his name spoken out loud for the first time. His name is Lincoln Parker Ehret, we say with pride. Wes's mom cries as she finds out that her maiden name is her grandson's middle name. We spend the next hour and half taking pictures, passing Lincoln around the room, and trying to determine who he looks like.

3:30 am: the room clears out and Wes and I are left alone with our boy. Exhaustion sets in.
Give me this kind of exhaustion any day.

This boy is worth it.

Friday, August 29, 2008

Welcome, Lincoln Parker!

He's here and he is beautiful!

Born: August 29, 2008 at 12:51 am
Weighing in at: 8 lbs.
Measuring: 21 inches
More details to follow...
Welcome to our world, Lincoln! We love you so much already.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008


It's official. I'm ready. I got my hair done today. That was the last thing on my list of things to do before birthing our son. Bring this baby on.

We also checked another big item off our list last night. Griffin slept in a BIG BOY bed for the very first time.

Only a few tears were shed. Most of them by me. =)

So, now we wait. I've been wondering. When do you all think the big day will be? My brother asked Griffin to point to a calendar tonight to see when he thought the baby would be born, and he pointed to tomorrow. Sounds good to me!

How about you? What do you think? Leave me some comment love with your best guess.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

No, he's not here yet.

Let's be real honest here. I could post all sorts of fun pics from the past few weeks highlighting the events that have taken place in my life from Griffin's Under the Sea birthday party to my family's week of day trips (which we've lovingly entitled the Hill Family Stay-cation) to the firstfruits of my little garden, etc.

But c'mon don't really care about that! You just stopped by to see if I had this baby yet, didn't you? I know how you are.

And I don't blame you. So let's make a deal. For today's post, I will give you the latest on this baby boy who's about to enter our world. And over the next week, if he chooses to continue to withhold his presence from us, I will share those pics and stories of the fun we've had over the past few weeks. Sound fair? I think so. And it will be a nice diversion for me to pass the time. I may need it.'s the latest:

He's not here yet, for starters. And to be honest, up until this past week I've been feeling so good that I've been wondering if I really was due in a couple weeks. But this week, I've been introduced to the world of pelvic floor pain as this baby's head finally decided to drop. Not exactly comfortable, but there is some comfort in knowing he is making his way in the right direction.

So, as of my doctor's appointment yesterday, I am 2-3 cm dialated. A welcome change from last week's appointment when there was no sign of anything. My doctor is a big fan of induction, so she made an appeal that I consider getting induced this next week. I was prepared for this and already had made my resolve that I would not consider this as an option. My brick wall started to crumble a bit as she made the process sound like a breeze the second time around, especially since I have already started to dialate. I would definitely like to hold out at least until my due date, though, and then we will see.

Oh, and as of last week, this kid's estimated weight was 8 lb. 4 oz. Another reason why induction may be in my future.

Until then, I have been keeping myself very busy. Having been gone so much lately, there were some pretty essential things that still needed to be done. My list of accomplishments over the past week:
Setting up the bassinet. Check.
Cleaning the car seat which had collected much dirt in our garage. Check.
Washing all the baby clothes and realizing many of them had stains and we needed more. Check.
Buying some new baby clothes. (Children's Place on had a great sale!) Check.
Cleaning like a mad woman. Check. (Wish this nesting thing continued after the pregnancy!)

I also need to give some props to friends and family who have loved on me lately, like my sister in law who, with true unconditional love, cut my toe nails for me while on vacation: husband who's about to paint my toe nails for me (although he doesn't know it yet...I'm cashing in on an offer he made a week ago...), my friend, Anca, who watched Griffin while I did a bunch of running around yesterday and made us a couple of meals (did I mention she has a two year old and a newborn?), and our friends, the Bruces, who are about to take Griffin to the Discovery Center while Wes and I go on one last date pre-child #2. YAY! Not to mention those who have called just to check up on me. I just feel grateful.

There have been moments of anxiety as well. I had a little breakdown last night as some of the stress of this time started to settle in. But, in all honesty, my emotions have behaved themselves pretty well this time around. I have yet to have a melt down in the middle of Target because the lady in the dressing room wouldn't let me mix and match the size of the pajamas I wanted to buy. Ahem. I guess I still have time though.

Ok. That's all for now. Stay tuned for the latest on "Wes and Kaley plus Two" (hmmm...doesn't quite have the same ring to it.)

Oh--I'm pretty sure our hospital has wi-fi, so hopefully we will bring you some pics very shortly after the birth!

Wednesday, August 6, 2008


Milestones tend to make me a bit sappy and sentimental. Consider that your warning.

Griffin turns three tomorrow. I find myself stealing glances of him throughout the day, trying to soak in the last few moments of his life as a two year old. My emotions mix between welcoming his future and straining to hold onto his past.

I wish I could make a time capsule of all that makes Griffin uniquely himself as an almost three year old. So I will document my best effort in this post.


I was completely unprepared for the changes that you would bring to life when you entered our world almost three years ago. But then is it really possible to prepare for sleepless nights and a complete upheaval of life as we knew it? Guess not.

But, mostly I was unprepared for this great big, huge, immense, giant ball of love that began to grow in my heart for this little life that appeared in our world one afternoon in August, 2005.

And now you are almost three. A big part of me would like to put life on hold and keep you almost three forever. But then there is the even bigger part that can't wait to watch your life unfold and see what you become. Wow. I love that thought.

So, in an effort to hold onto a piece of your life as a two year old, I've attempted to think of the three best words to describe you at this point in time.

Active. Your very first question when I get you out of bed in the morning is, "Is Daddy here?" It is quickly followed up by, "Where are we going?" You love to go, go, go.

So much of who you are is wrapped up in this word. You can't wait to ask new questions, make new friends, spend time with the people you love, help with the gardening, sing at the top of your lungs or wrestle with Daddy. There are definitely days that I don't know if I can keep up with you for another minute.

Observant. Those who know you best often comment, "He doesn't miss a thing, does he?" You often surprise us with what you observe.

You demonstrated this the other day when Papa Nick (our landlord) was over at the house. You pointed out to him that you had a shirt with a pocket just like he did. You then hurried away looking for something. A couple minutes later, you returned with a pencil and a piece of paper stuffed inside your pocket. You've noticed that Papa Nick always carries a notepad and a pencil in his pocket and you wanted to be just like him. I think Papa Nick was about ready to burst as he watched you imitate him.

(I'm quite sure this quality may be something that your wife will appreciate someday.)

Outgoing. A couple of weeks ago, we were in Florida and were about to head down to the hotel swimming pool. As we headed out the door, you said with great enthusiasm, "My friends are down there, Mommy!" You had never met them before, but you were quite confident that anyone you came into contact with would quickly become your friend.

And to be honest, this is usually the case. You are drawn to people and they, in turn, are drawn to you. I think this must have something to do with how well-loved you are by so many people.

That is only the start. There are so many more words to describe you, Griffin: happy, helpful, inquisitive, funny, and strong-willed (very strong-willed) are just a few.

And now, in just a few short weeks, you will be a big brother. I can't wait to watch you fill this role. I know you will love it.

And so, Happy Third Birthday, Griffin Wesley Ehret. Your daddy and I love you more than we can say. You are the best thing we have ever done.


Thursday, July 31, 2008

crazy fun

Life's been a little crazy lately. Fun, but crazy.

It all started with our camping trip. Which, I'm happy to report, I did survive. We actually had fun, although sleeping was a bear on our thin air mattresses. It went a little something like this:
Find a comfortable position on right side with pillow under belly for support.
Sleep 30 minutes.
Wake up feeling numb-tingly on right side.
Switch pillow and belly to left side.
Sleep 30 minutes.
Wake up feeling numb-tingly on left side.

I managed to squeeze in a couple naps in my in-laws camper and then all was well. I really am a fan of camping--it's just a lot easier when you're not 8 months pregnant. =)

We returned home on Monday to do laundry and pack in order to head back out on Tuesday. "Why?" you ask. Because we were heading here:

And here:


Here we are ready to take off on Griff's FIRST plane ride. Other than being louder than the average airplane passenger, he did great.

Actually, it was a work trip for Wes, but we managed to find some super cheap tickets and Griff and I tagged along. We had a blast. Between finding free tickets for Disney and Sea World and being well taken care of by Wes's work, we were spoiled like crazy. We were put up in the Disney Hilton and treated to some fabulous meals throughout the week.

The best I can do for a belly pic. We sat in the very front of the monorail into Disney.
The pilot even gave us pilot's licenses. =)

Oh...and my pregnancy hormones behaved themselves for the most part and I made it through the whole trip with only one emotional breakdown. And that was after spending about 8 hours walking around two theme parks in 100 degree weather. Not bad.

NOW it's back to reality. We are gonna have a baby in approximately ONE MONTH. Gulp. AND a little boy turning three in ONE WEEK. Sigh.

Gotta go.

Friday, July 18, 2008

am i crazy?

This prego mama is taking her big belly camping this weekend--yep, air-mattress-no air-conditioning-in-90-degree-heat-public-bathroom-tent-camping.
Is it just me--or am I crazy?

Thursday, July 10, 2008


Hi. My name is Kaley and I'm an addict.

I never thought it would come to this.

I've become a coupon/free stuff junkie.

It's bad.

It all started because of Beckie's influence and now I'm having a hard time pulling myself away from my coupon clipping, ad-scanning, web-surfing addiction to even tell you about it.

My mind is overflowing with CVS extra bucks deals and Rite Aid single check rebates and Price Chopper's triple coupons and the sale prices of dozens of items.

Beckie tells me that in a month or so, I should be back to my normal self. I will no longer have nightmares about missing out on a free after rebate deal. I will stop making my husband wait for 45 minutes in the car while I just "run in" to CVS....for the third time that week. And I will be able to dedicate a little bit more time to the non-essentials in life like cooking and cleaning.

Meanwhile, you'll just have to wait on any further updates on my life. I've been meaning to post pictures of my cute little garden for the longest time. My latest belly pic is way overdue. I wanted to share with you about Griffin's very first VBS this week and the adorable way he grabbed his teacher's hand on the first day and took off without even looking back...sigh. Oh and update you on his potty-training SUCCESS (almost). And by the way, I'm going to have a baby in 7 weeks...

Now, if you'll excuse me, I just found some great deals on Pampers to cover that little bottom that will soon be here.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Where I've Been

I've been here--A LOT. (Tips and techniques welcomed!)

I've also been here--one of my favorite places in the world--my grandparent's cottage. It was the first time we spent the weekend with Griffin there and we had the most refreshing time. Looooooove this place!
Griffin teaching Daddy how to build a fire--or so he thought.
Nothing cuter than a little boy in a life jacket hugging his Daddy.

While we were there, we celebrated our sixth anniversary.

Here we are, six years ago, laying in a hammock on a beach in the Bahamas (sigh).
And here we are now.

Happy Anniversary, Baby! Six down. Sixty to go!

And I've been here--hanging with my girls. This is (part of) my dive group from Elevate (our youth group). They also spent a night at the cottage with me as our last hurrah. Seven out of eight of them are graduating this year. Love you, girls!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

'The Talk'

Who knew it would come up so early? I certainly wasn't prepared for it. But there was no dodging it. The Boy had to be answered.

Out of the blue, the other night, Griffin asked The Question.

"How did Baby Bob (his nickname for the baby) get in Mommy's tummy?"

Wes and I turned to each other, each waiting for the other's response. I gave him the "this-one's-your-territory" knowing glance.

So, Wes just dove right in.

"Well, see...God did it."

Good answer, Wes. Next time won't be so easy.

I think we may have a few years before we have to get down the nitty gritty though. We asked Griffin the other day who his girlfriend was. He answered, "Karis (his cousin)." Oh boy.

But then he continued. "Ethan (his other cousin). And Todd (his uncle)." Looks like the whole dating thing isn't much of an issue yet.

We took Griffin to meet Baby Bob (did I mention that's not his real name? just thought I'd clarify) yesterday. I had an ultrasound and we thought it might help him grasp the concept that there really is a baby in there. He was quite intrigued. But gotta be honest...he was more intrigued with the rubber gloves that the ultrasound technician gave him as he was leaving. He proudly announced that he was going to go home and work outside with them (gardening) and he did.

Here we are, attempting to capture the moment with our
awesome ultrasound technician, Kathy.
Griffin was a little distracted.
Baby Bob is doing great! He now weighs around 3.5 pounds. He
kicked and stretched the whole time. I think things are getting a little
cozier in there for him.

Piggie pics are my fave.

And one more for the road just because it's so darn cute.
Griffin's friend Daniel is spending the day with us.
They wanted to wear these aprons because they needed
to make a pie.

Love these boys.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

On this date in the year 2000...

...I was here, on the island of Hawaii, visiting Pearl Harbor,
climbing volcanoes,

snorkeling, enjoying the scenery,

and going to a luau with my friend, Amilee.

Just thought you oughtta know.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008


Wes and I often talk about how spoiled we are to have a bevy of family and friends nearby who are quite frankly at our beck and call when we need a babysitter.

I recently finished a semester of Making it Count presentations and would like to take this opportunity to express some long overdue words of gratitude and praise. I would never have been able to take this job on were it not for a group of fabulous people who willingly and faithfully looked after our little cherub. At times the mornings were early, some days were long, but I know Griffin was well-loved and cared for. Would you join me in celebrating some of my personal heroes?

'Mama' and 'Papa Ehret

'Mama' and 'Papa' Doug (aka 'Gug')

Aunt Tami

'Shisha' and Uncle Ryan

'Mar' and 'Papa Nick' (our landlords/surrogate grandparents)

My friend Tonya (Mommy of Daniel/aka Doon Doon)