Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Remembering a Wonderful Woman

One year ago today we received an early morning phone call informing us that Mark's mother, Jeanette, had passed away. She was an incredible woman of God and I was blessed to have her as mother-in-law. She was a proud grandmother and I am so thankful that she was able to meet Anna and spend the second week of Anna's life here with us. I do feel sadness that Jeanette will not be a physical part of Anna's life, but know that the legacy of faith, kindness and love that she left will be something that is forever a part of Anna's identity. Although there is a little sadness today, it is also a day to dwell on the wonderful woman she was and the God who she loved and shaped her into that person.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Finally Forty

So, it happened. 8 days ago, I turned 40! I keep getting asked the question.. "So what does it feel like to turn 40?" My only way to answer that right now is BUSY! It feels like I have been going 90 miles an hour non-stop for the past 8 days. Maybe I really am not that busy and I am just getting old and simple things tire me out. :-) I did go to bed at 8:30 PM last Saturday night and I am becoming interested in bird watching. I even ate at a cafeteria twice last week (it was at the hospital where my dad was a patient, but still!)

In spite of the busy schedule, I did have a nice birthday. Mark threw me a birthday party with a GLEE theme. My sister made slushies to fit with the GLEE theme and my Uncle Paul made a DELICIOUS cake. I was blessed by many friends and some wonderful gifts. Thanks to the generosity of several friends and family members I was able to compile some birthday money and gift cards treat myself to a brand new IPOD Touch. I bought it on Friday, but as of right now it is still in the box. Maybe things will slow down and I can actually use it. :-) I also received my very own Snuggie and a Hummingbird Feeder! Since I am getting older, it will be good to use the Snuggie to stay warm while I wait for the hummingbirds to come. :-)

Thanks to everyone who made it a great birthday!

Monday, April 12, 2010


I am proud to admit that I am a huge GLEEK! For anyone who does not know what the term GLEEK means, it is someone who loves the TV show GLEE. This show has been on hiatus since December, but it returns this 9:28 PM on Tuesday, April 13th on Fox. I am so excited for it to return. It such a funny and entertaining show and I get lots of enjoyment out of the quirky characters, musical numbers and clever scripts. My favorite episode is one where the entire football team ends up dancing to "All the Single Ladies" during a football game. Just so funny and too hard to put into is just something that has to be seen.
I am such a huge GLEEK that I am having a GLEE themed birthday party on Saturday to celebrate my 40th birthday. (See details below if you are interested...all are welcome.)
For those who don't know, the party is at Living Stones Church from 4:00 to 5:30 PM. Feel free to drop in anytime. My uncle is making a delicious cake and Mark has ordered some yummy appetizers and snacks. My sister is providing slushies (feel free to give yourself a slushie facial if you want...or you can just drink them.) It is going to be a GLEE-ful time!

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Spring Break Adventurers

I wish that I could say I spent my spring break at some tropical location like Cancun, but that is not the case. We went to Potawotami Zoo and to West Lafayette! Almost like Cancun, but not quite.

I do have to confess that we did take our "Spring Break" a little bit early. In February, we took a fun trip to the Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida...Otherwise known as the Happiest Place on Earth. As you can see from the photo, the weather wasn't exactly tropical (it was actually really cold) but we still had a great time.

I am ready to go back to Disney already. I actually think I could live there. However, instead of Disney, we stayed in the great state of Indiana. Potowatomi Zoo was fun. Anna seemed to enjoy it, especially the tigers. I think they reminded her of our cat Lily (who she likes to chase, but Lily doesn't share Anna's affinity for that game.)

On Friday, we loaded the car up for an overnight trip to West Lafayette (Home of the Purdue Boilermakers) to visit my sister. My sister's birthday was April 3rd and she was having a party to celebrate. Her party was at a flower shop where all of the guests got to make a flower arrangement. It was very cool. I figured that Mark would prefer to stay with Anna at my sister's house during the party since all of the guests were women. However, Mark was very excited about doing an arrangement and was willing to overlook the estrogen fest. Here are photos of the arrangements we made:

Mark's arrangement is on the left and mine is on the right. Anna did not do an arrangement, but had a great time playing with the stems that were discarded. Mark and are still arguing about who is the better floral designer. :-) Should we consider opening our own floral shop?

All in all, it was a good spring break and definitely not ready to go back to school in the morning. Maybe we will have freak snowstorm that will cancel school and then melt all the snow by 10 AM and warm up to 70 degrees. A girl can dream right!!

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Amazing Parenting Advice

I have only been a parent for 14 months so I don't have much to offer in terms of advice. Most of the time, I am just hanging on for dear life hoping that I don't do anything that permanently scars Anna. :-)

However, I am not sure that everyone feels like I do. It seems like from the moment I announced that I was pregnant it people were constantly sharing advice (mostly unsolicited) on pregnancy, childbirth and parenting. Advice like:

"Be sure to put your newborn on the potty right away so that you can potty train them by six months."


"You should breastfeed your child until they are 12 so they never are sick a day in their life."

Well, when you have a Type A personality like mine, all this advice can become a little overwhelming because I always want to do the "right" thing. So in the midst of this onslaught of advice, I have found 3 pearls of wisdom that have been really helpful to me.

  1. Enjoy every stage that your child goes through. The person I heard this from actually wasn't even giving advice. It stemmed from a conversation with someone who was getting ready to send her youngest child to college. When I asked her about how she felt about having an empty nest, she talked about how excited she was for the opportunity her son was about to have and for the person that she would see him become because of it. She then talked about she has thoroughly enjoyed every stage that her children have gone through from the up all night newborn stage, to the rebellious teenage stage, to the adult child entering the working world.
  2. It is not my job to shape my child into what I want her to be. Rather, my main job is to point her to the God who created her so he can shape her into who she was created to be. When I heard this at MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) meeting, it was so freeing to me. Knowing my job is to introduce Anna to God and let Him be the one who shapes her sure takes a lot of pressure off me to make sure that I do everything "right."
  3. Don't listen to people's advice. Most people don't have a clue about raising kids anyway. This just makes me smile and helps me know that lots of other people are hanging on for dear life just like me.

So when someone throws a piece of advice out there like: "You should start teaching your child algebraic equations at age 1 or she will never get into college." I remember these three pearls of wisdom (especially number 3.) :-)

Wednesday, April 7, 2010


This month I will be turning 40 (April 18th to be exact so you still have time to buy me a gift). In honor of this momentous occasion, I have decided to enter the blog-o-sphere. I am looking forward to the next chapter of my life and what exciting things are in store....some of which I will be posting here. I say farewell to my 30's, here are some of the highlights of the past decade:
  • Going to Disney World for the first time (and 2 other times since then)...It really is The Happiest Place on Earth
  • Marrying Mark...the most kind and wonderful husband a girl could ask for
  • Buying my first house (and second house with Mark)
  • Trips to NYC, Vermont, DC, Tennessee, Colorado, Pennsylvania and other exciting places
  • HDTV (this may be the best invention ever...although my excitement over this may be the fact that we just purchased one and it is AWESOME!)
  • Losing 90 pounds (we ignore the fact that about 50 lbs of that is back thanks to wedded bliss and pregnancy...hoping the 40's see the loss of those 50 lbs)
  • Getting completely out of debt
  • The arrival of my beautiful baby girl, Anna Mikaela Osterhout
So 30's, it's been a great decade, but I must bid you adieu! To the 40's, I say "BRING IT!!"