My Birthday Babies

Tuesday, St. Patrick’s Day, was my 32nd birthday. We spend a quiet day at home recovering from our trip. March3001Stephen and I just got back from a couple’s getaway in Portland, Oregon, while the boys were graciously taken care of by friends.March2009March2003

Silas desperately wanted to buy me a birthday cake and kept asking questions throughout the day like, “Why is it your birthday?” He made me a beautiful card with a picture of me in a princess suit and Batman next to me. Inside, he copied my letters to write out “Happy Birthday Mom.”March2002March4001March2005

It was sweet to open my cards and presents from family, and what a special time it was to be reunited with my boys and enjoy Stephen’s day off.March2004

Since this is my first birthday with a huge baby bump, I thought I’d get some pictures. (Full disclosure: the only reason I did my hair and make-up was to take these pictures.) March2006March2007Baby Girl is 27 weeks along, and we are now officially in the 6th month and 3rd trimester. Birthdays with these cabbage heads are the best!March2001March3002

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A Prayer for St. Patrick’s Day

I recently came across St. Patrick’s prayer both through a music CD and a luncheon at a church we were visiting. It’s so beautiful that I wanted to post it here to celebrate St. Patrick’s day and to encourage my heart to make this my prayer. Here is an excerpt from the prayer:

I arise today through a mighty strength, the invocation of the Trinity, through the belief in the Threeness, through confession of the Oneness of the Creator of Creation.

...Christ with me, Christ before me, Christ behind me, Christ in me, Christ beneath me, Christ above me, Christ on my right, Christ on my left, Christ when I lie down, Christ when I sit down, Christ when I arise, Christ in the heart of every man who thinks of me, Christ in the mouth of everyone who speaks of me, Christ in every eye that sees me, Christ in every ear that hears me.

I arise today through a mighty strength, the invocation of the Trinity, through belief in the Threeness, through confession of the Oneness, of the Creator of Creation.


~The Lorica, The Deer’s Cry, Morning Prayer, Breastplate of St. Patrick – 433 A.D.

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Just Some Happenings

I’ve been thinking of a couple blog posts I could write but just haven’t felt motivated to do it. So, here I am just catching you up on the exciting news that is our daily life.March1002 I think the less structured the post is, the more chance I have of actually finishing it today.March1003

The other weekend, Stephen’s company was moving offices, so the boys and I were on our own for the day. We went to a friend’s Toy Story themed birthday party at a new park we had never visited. It was a huge bash with a cookout, pinata, and cupcakes.March1006March1007

A local library was hosting a Firetruck Story Time led by the firefighters. Afterwards we walked to the fire station to see the firetruck and equipment and tour the firehouse. Each of the boys got a Junior Firefighter sticker and helmet. March1008The fire chief pointed out that when a fireman comes to rescue people from a burning building, he will sound funny since he’s breathing through a mask. But, even though he might look like Darth Vader, kids don’t need to be scared of him since he’s there to help. I thought that was an excellent thing to point out to the kids. I had never thought about it, but I’m sure a child caught in a burning building will already be so traumatized that seeing a funny looking person in a mask might add to their fright. They might try to get away from the fireman instead of letting him help.March1009

We checked out some books from our Goodyear library the other week. Cooper loved looking at this Knowledge Encyclopedia with all of its engaging pictures. March1005By the way, look closely at Cooper’s left foot in this picture. See how he’s crossing his second toe under the others? Silas, Stephen, and Cooper can all articulate their toes like that, and I definitely can’t! It must be a genetic trait. Can you cross your toes? I didn’t even know that it was possible to do until I married Stephen. Must be in the Moody genes.March1004

Two Saturdays ago I attended a Women4Truth conference over in Chandler. Elyse Fitzpatrick was the speaker, and I so wanted to hear her since I’ve read a couple of her books. She spoke about her new book entitled Good News for Weary Women. It was refreshing! I went by myself, and not only made new friends, but also met a girl whose blog I read. I recognized her from the pictures on her blog, but didn’t expect to randomly bump into her. So fun to meet a fellow blogger from Phoenix who is also due the day after me!

Baby Girl and I had our 26 week appointment last Thursday. I’m measuring perfectly according to the doctor, but I feel like my baby bump is already so big! Baby Sister is kicking and squirming a lot and is still nameless as of right now. We’re working on it. (I also need to take more baby bump pics. For now, here’s one of Silas as a little old man.)March1001

We drove over to Globe, AZ this past Saturday to see our friends, Yesenia and Jason. Jason pastors Central Heights Baptist Church, and we wanted to see their place of ministry and explore a new area. The drive to Globe was beautiful as we passed through the mountains and saw so many cool rock formations. We felt like we were touring the entire US on a small scale as we drove. Globe itself was the Arizona twin of West Virginia. It looked like the desert version of Clarksburg, WV. The small, multi-level homes stuck on the sides of the mountains, the curved bridge in the center of town, the bricks, stones, and varied architectural styles, and the mining industry all contributed to the West Virginia feel of the place. We had a fabulous time catching up with Yesenia and Jason. March2010There was so much to talk about that we hardly stopped for a breath! There’s nothing like connecting with friends over faith, ministry, and gospel-living.

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A Cowboy Valentine’s Trip

Tombstone, AZ was our destination for a day trip as we stepped back in time for some cowboy history on Valentine’s Day. February4003February4004Tombstone was impressive since so much detailed history is known and preserved. We walked along the boardwalk with our two little sheriffs. February6001At the OK Corral we learned about the famous shootout and the story of Tombstone.February6002February4001February6004 Then we watched a gunfight in the street before taking a trolley tour around town.February4002 On the tour we saw Wyatt Earp’s house, the original county courthouse, and Boothill Graveyard which we later went back to explore on our own. Most of the graves were marked “Unknown,” but there were some interesting epitaphs too. February4005February5001

My valentines were so handsome at dinner that I couldn’t resist a picture. February4007Though it was an unconventional way to spend Valentine’s Day, there’s nothing like being with the people I love most!February6003February6005

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Valentine Hearts

Ever since we were given our first onesie for Baby Girl, Cooper has been noticing hearts and pointing them out to me. At first, hearts were just for Baby Sister since the onesie has a heart on it. With Valentine decorations everywhere, hearts have been easy for him to spot.

I found these adorable felt envelopes in the dollar spot section of Target. February3002I had seen something similar online and had been wanting to make them, so these were a great purchase for only $1 each! Originally, I was wanting to hang them on the back of our kitchen chairs, but little grubby hands keep our chairs very sticky. So, I added ribbons to them and hung them on our bedroom doors for me to tuck valentines inside.

Last week was very busy and wore us all out, February3001but we managed a candlelight dinner on the back patio one night. (That is, until Cooper blew out our candle.)February3004I tried a new recipe called Crispy Baked Pasta with Mushrooms, Sausage, and Parmesan Cream Sauce from Serious Eats. The sauce alone was worth it! Such a complex flavor that I couldn’t wait for Stephen to get home to try it.February3003

Friday was our Valentine’s date. Silas and Cooper are enrolled in a private daycare, so we dropped them off for three hours while Stephen and I went downtown for Food Truck Friday. February3005February3006Each Friday, various food trucks gather in the Phoenix Public Market Cafe parking lot and offer lots of options for lunch. I had a four cheese grilled cheese sandwich, and Stephen chose the wood fire pizza. February3007February3008Then we split a Reuben-style hot dog and a raspberry cheesecake. Yum!

Baby Girl and I are now 23 weeks along. She’s developing some muscle to her kicks and squirms. Next year, we’ll have another sweetheart to celebrate on Valentine’s Day.February3009February3010

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Train Time

February weather in Phoenix has been beautiful—a little too warm for our tastes—but still beautiful! Two Sundays ago we thought we’d take advantage of the free train rides offered by the Maricopa Live Steamers, a train club north of Phoenix.February2003

Stephen and the boys took train, straddling one of the tiny cars. Stephen said the boys were so quiet, just taking in the experience. Cooper was especially enamored as he is our mechanical guy. Anything with cars, trucks, airplanes, or trains gets him excited. After a 10 minute ride, the guys explored the tiny train museum, and then boarded the train for the 10 minute ride back to the station.February2002

Since I couldn’t ride the train due to baby girl, I sat at the station and talked with one of the train club members. Their set up is pretty impressive with 18 miles of tracks, a playground, garden train, indoor train display, and a western town facade.February2001

Silas and Cooper drove a practice train in the club’s “Engineer’s School.” Cooper struggled with the lever, but did manage to drive the train up and down the track. After a little playtime on their wooden train playground, we finished off the afternoon with custard from Culver’s.

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A Four Year Old’s Perspective

Now that Silas is four, he tells me stories about ”when [he] was a little boy—when [he] was three and a half.” His questions are plentiful, and it’s fun to see him sort out his world. Silas is very quick to share what he’s learned with Cooper, instructing him on how life works.February1002

Here are just a few glimpses into the mind of S-I-L-A-S.

At a restaurant, the server commented on how the boys’ ice cream was “letting Mommy and Daddy enjoy their meal in peace.” When the server left, Silas asked, “How did she know your names?”

After pulling into the garage one night, I was very tired and sat in the car. Stephen teased and told me to go in the house. I teased back, “Yes, Father!” Silas quickly said, “He’s not your father, he’s your daddy!”February1001

While coloring at the kitchen island, I overheard Silas offer his coloring picture to Cooper. Cooper yelled, “NO!” Then, in a sincere attempt to be kind to his brother, Silas came back with, “This picture isn’t very cool, and you like things that aren’t very cool, so you can have this picture!”February1003

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The 50 Yard Line

With the Super Bowl right around the corner, this blog title seemed appropriate. Baby Girl and I are halfway through this pregnancy. We hit the 20 week mark this past Friday!January4001

Our kind friends are already beginning to shower us with pink outfits for our little girl. I think the clothes have helped Cooper realize that a baby really is coming. He kept finding the girl onesies and bringing them to me saying, “Baby has clothes! Baby has clothes!”January4002

On Sunday a friend surprised me with four boxes of second-hand baby girl clothes. Some of them are brand new and still have the tags on them. Wow! God uses all sorts of means to provide for us.January4003

I’m dreaming of a nursery that’s aqua & yellow with coral accents. We’ll see how much of that actually happens.January400420 weeks down, 20 to go.

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Little Man Coop

I’ve learned something. And that something is how my little boy says, “I love you.” Cooper’s “Hi, Mom,” can mean lots of different things.January3001

When I’m laying down next to him, he’ll pop out with, “Hi, Mom,” several times just to let me know that he likes being with me.

After he’s disobeyed, a “Hi, Mom,” is his way of reconciling—of saying, “I’m sorry.”

Other times his, “Hi, Mom” is a plea for affection. IMG_20150124_115242687a

“Hi, Mom,” is the new, “I love you.”

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It Really IS a Girl

The big headline this week is that we are expecting a girl! Stephen and I are thrilled and surprised. Of course, we were hoping for a girl, but it was still a bit of a shock to discover that baby actually IS a girl. God is gracious to grant us the desire of our hearts—an undeserved gift.January2007

Thursday morning was our ultrasound, and Stephen was able to come with me. It was so sweet to find out that the wiggly little munchkin in my tummy is a baby girl. She will be the first granddaughter on the Manka side, and a close second on the Moody side. Stephen’s sister and brother-in-law are expecting a girl in May—so Stephen and I will finally be an uncle and aunt, the boys will have their first cousin, and our daughter will have a girl cousin just her age.January2005

This past Sunday I started feeling baby kicks for the first time. They are very gentle nudges, but Stephen even felt them a little.

We wanted to tell the boys about their sister together, so we had to wait until after Stephen came home from work and after our dinner guests left for the night.January2001January2002 Here’s a little video of us telling the boys. YouTube Preview ImageYou might remember these baby girl shoes from my pregnancy announcement to Stephen. I can’t believe our baby can actually wear these shoes! January2006

Silas understands quite a bit about the baby and keeps asking when the baby will be the size of a pumpkin. He is fascinated with how the baby eats through “that rope” (umbilical cord). Cooper, on the other hand, thinks he and everyone else in our family has a baby in his belly.January2001I guess we’ll have to think of a better name for the baby than “Stoody.” Silas decided he wanted to call the baby “Stoody” since Daddy tells him bedtime stories about “Milas Clark Stoody”—a play on Silas Clark Moody. According to Silas, “Stoody” could be either a girl name or a boy name.January2002

Welcome, baby sister!

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