I knew it had been a while...

...just didn't realize how long. =)

I know some of you just got really excited when you saw that my name was highlighted, meaning I had updated, but don't get too excited. I just thought maybe some of you would like to know why I haven't posted in over a year. =)

*We started seeing a new therapist just outside of Boston, MA. I'm still not able to get all of it done every day, but the boys have been improving tremendously.

*On that same note, each boy needs some special attention from their mom every minute I can spare.

*Cooper, who has always loved to climb, has decided that climbing up on the dining room table is just so irresistible.

*I have entered 6 quilt in the Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show(for anyone who isn't familiar with it, check out their website: www.sistersoutdoorquiltshow.org). The pictures of the ones I'm selling will be on their website June 1st.

*Jeremy and I are team leaders at the Indiana FC Summer Camp in just over a week. I'm teaching a bookmaking class and ceramic planter class where the campers will be learning to arrange plants in planters I've made. Thankfully there are only 12 campers in the planter class.

*My lovely mother-in-law and sister-in-law have been a huge help by agreeing to help out with freezer meals about every other month since last November. With all the therapy that we do, it's nice not to have to meal plan every week.

*Speaking of therapy, in addition to what we do with the therapist in MA, Whit has 5 visits a week between his physical therapist, occupational therapist, and speech. Plus Cooper is starting with an occupational therapist and speech for two additional appointment that all last at least an hour.

In order to accommodate all that must fit into my week, I've had to eliminate a few things. Sadly, Pleo is one of them. If you want to keep up with me on a somewhat regular basis, I have a Twitter account, and you're welcome to look me up. My user name is "annbanan". If not, I look forward to seeing all of you in person whenever the Lord provide the opportunity. =)

  • meditationis
    Wow. I see you on a weekly basis and didn't know all that goes on with you. Wow. You ARE super-mom!
    by meditationis at 05/28/09 1:27PM
  • beavermom
    HI, Anna! I WAS glad to see your name highlighted, and it warms my heart to see and hear how you gracefully do all that you do for your family. You are priceless! Love you dearie!
    by beavermom at 05/28/09 1:39PM
  • heidiw
    ANNA! You are right! I did get all excited when i saw your name lit up! I am so glad to hear that things are going relatively well for you! I miss you all so much. :) Have a blessed day!!
    by heidiw at 05/28/09 2:00PM
  • tryphena
    Yep, I was excited, too! I knew that you were busy, but to see it in writing...WOW, you're exceptional! I love you and your boys!
    by tryphena at 05/28/09 2:09PM
  • robynbobm
    I was excited too! But I don't tweet. :( God bless you for your care for your children!
    by robynbobm at 05/28/09 3:26PM
  • dehutmom
    Your name in lights put a smile on my face. :) tho I definately know that pleo is a little low on the ol' priority list for you. :) Can't wait for the boys...should we call Leo?
    by dehutmom at 05/28/09 3:57PM
  • spinningbee
    Glad to hear you're doing OK!!! You should join face book, post pictures, show us how big your sweet boys are getting!!
    by spinningbee at 05/28/09 11:57PM

Blessings and Changes

So while I was working on my dress for a recent wedding, I realized it might look a little better if I actually had a waist to go under the dress since giving birth to three beautiful boys does tend to stretch muscles in ways they didn't start out in. The first change was to form an exercise plan, which I did from a great book that only takes 8 minutes in the morning and was just enough to remind me that I did in face have tummy muscles and a strait spine. Jeremy enjoys the new plan too since it meant I could have oatmeal cooking while I did my exercises so he and Cooper could have a hot breakfast(Cianan and I aren't big fans of the mushy stuff).

The next change to take place was when we moved our TV out of the livingroom. We explained to Cianan that we had been watching too much TV and would not be watching any for 30 days. Something got lost in translation because when he started talking to Grandma Linda about the new plan, he exclaimed that we would not be watching TV for 30 years! It probably feels like that to him, but we've seen enough benefits that we will be extending the 30 days by an extra week since we did watch some while on vacation last week since some of us were sick.

This week we've made the decision to change the way we eat. At first I was a little worried because I love my white flour and sugar, but it's actually been very liberating. Because of the pickiness of some eaters in the house, our consumption of veggies was very limited, but now we're trying to make fresh green stuff the majority of what is on our plates. I was ready to try a stir-fry the first night, but we decided to "start them off easy" with a spinach soup. I think it actually worked out for the best because Cianan seemed thoroughly grateful to have a plate full of steamed carrots and broccoli, corn on the cob, and a small pork chop the next night. That one is definitely going to be a work in progress! =)

We have been so blessed in the last month and a half that Cooper has started working on talking! We've been praying for this for so long and are so excited to see how God is working on Cooper's development! He's saying "Ma-ma", "more" when he means it, "yes" when we ask him questions even when we're not expecting an answer, and he gives us so many other signs that he understands what we're talking about. We can hardly wait to see what God has in store for him in the next year!

This week Whit has start trying to hold his head up! It is so exciting to see him look you strait in the eye while you hold up him body in your lap and he works at keeping his head level. This is such an important step to so many other things, like eating, playing, talking, crawling, and walking! God has blessed us so richly with our boys!

Cianan is still such a big help! He saves me so many step in a day that sometimes I forget to do certain things when he's not around. He helps with the dishes, he helps by throwing away dirty diapers, he helps keep an eye on Cooper when I'm out of the room, and he loves to give Whit kisses and toys to look at. He started tickling/wrestling with Cooper, and it's the cutes thing to hear the two of them laughing and playing together! I love that he and Cooper have found a way to interact like brothers should!

I pray that God blesses each one of you as richly as He has me!
  • robynbobm
    I was glad to get Jeremy's report on Norm from your dad.
    by robynbobm at 04/14/08 4:50PM
  • dehutmom
    Hey you!! Can't wait to get some fantabulous hugs!! You guys stay well for this coming weekend....ok......Please. Love you.
    by dehutmom at 04/14/08 7:21PM
  • kisforkristin
    Thanks for the update! Hope this finds you doing well!
    by kisforkristin at 04/17/08 3:48PM
  • kisforkristin
    Oh, and I saw some of the updates on Whit that you put on Lindsey's blog. That is fantastic!!
    by kisforkristin at 04/21/08 5:11PM
  • robynbobm
    ^I'm hoping that being too busy to post means lots of good things are happening. :)
    by robynbobm at 04/21/08 6:00PM
  • cherri
    I have an interview next Tues at 1 pm :) Thanks again!
    by cherri at 04/23/08 4:37PM
  • lindseyd
    I would love some houseplants! You let Jeremy know we would very much enjoy taking them off your hands.:o)
    by lindseyd at 04/26/08 1:56PM
  • kisforkristin
    Hey, don't know if you are still on, but if you are, could you send me your email address? Mine is [email protected] We've had some stuff come up that I could really use your input on.
    by kisforkristin at 04/28/08 7:18PM
  • pbandchoc
    I can't wait to see you too! It's been nice seeing Jeremy when he comes on Mondays for Neil. I am so happy about Whit! That is such a blessing!
    by pbandchoc at 04/29/08 7:51AM
  • candyhere
    Braden has a game on Monday at 7:00, so we can't quilt then. He actually has a game every Monday night. If I remember right, you said that you can't quilt on Tuesday either, correct? What if we get together the next week?
    by candyhere at 05/03/08 9:48PM
  • curlie
    by curlie at 05/10/08 6:18PM
  • beavermom
    Happy Mother's day, Miss Anna! Love you! (((HUG!!!)))
    by beavermom at 05/11/08 1:03AM
  • kisforkristin
    Thanks for the encouragement! Love you too!
    by kisforkristin at 05/22/08 3:04PM
  • kisforkristin
    At the end, we got to have our hubbies try our favorite position and we got to place the ice cube on them! :o)
    by kisforkristin at 05/28/08 12:46PM
  • crystal_clear
    Hi Anna! How are things going for you in preparing for camp next week? I hope you are doing well. :o)
    by crystal_clear at 06/05/08 7:36AM
  • kendrad
    Hi Anna! Didn't know you were on here. How are things in OH. We haven't talked to you since Hessville.
    by kendrad at 07/10/08 11:03AM
  • spinningbee
    No news of baby Emma yet - lets all go to Kristins blog and guess Emma's birth time, weight, and length for fun!!!
    by spinningbee at 07/28/08 10:59PM
  • dewdrop
    Hey Anna, just in case you don't now who I am, but you saw that I added you, I'm Abby.
    by dewdrop at 10/09/08 4:59PM
  • heidiw
    Thanks for sharing Jeremy with WI. this week! We are REALLY enjoying him. I hope that you all are doing well!
    by heidiw at 10/14/08 6:39PM
  • robynbobm
    How is your family? I wish we were closer so I could watch what you do with your little boys. When did you start the signing?
    by robynbobm at 10/15/08 5:00PM

I know it's been forever!

But with roughly half of our Christmas gifts being made-from-scratch, one-of-a-kind Anna-originals, I think I'm allowed a small hiatus from blogging. =)

So about a week and a half before Christmas, we were hit with a pretty incredible snow storm. It didn't turn out to be the blizzard that it was hyped up to be, but there was about 6 inches of snow. The morning after it came, Cianan woke up and ran into our room yelling "Merry Christmas, Mama! Merry Christmas, Daddy! Merry Christmas, Whitaker!" When we had to explain to him that it really wasn't Christmas day just because it had snowed, he spent the rest of the week praying that the snow would last until Christmas Day. It ended up warming up too much for the snow to last, but we did have some snow flurries the week of.

Cooper started vocalizing during therapy at the beginning of my parents' week long visit and hasn't stopped since then. He's been exploring the range of sounds he can create. He's gone back to saying "Mama" and sometimes "up". While we were at Bruce and Linda's for the holidays, he started doing the cutest thing. Whenever he would make eye-contact with someone on his level(i.e. the floor or the couch), he would squeal as loud as he could, run for them, and throw his arms around their neck. Sometimes he would do it before his victim could fully compute what was going on and he would attach before they were completely prepared.

They started adjusting Whit's neck at the beginning of last month, and, boy, was he ready for it! His "core" muscles continue to strengthen at a rate they hadn't in the past. That means his little tummy is working better on it's own, but his neck muscles at still taking their time catching up. He laughs almost every time. He loves the little Elmo and Grover figures that Cooper "gave" him for Christmas. He's becoming more curious about what's around him, but it seems to be overly stimulating to have something to play with while sitting in someone's lap. He's becoming more interested in faces and loves when you play with his hands.

My latest project was kind of thrust on me recently. Sometime before Christmas, I noticed that my Star Jasmine plant that had formerly produced endless blooms was now no longer producing new growth and the blooms that were on it were wilting before their time. It wasn't until after the New Year that I noticed while letting the dog out one time that there was this moldy stuff growing on it. I trimmed it back some in preparation for washing the "mold" off, and then promptly put the job off for another time. "Another time" came on Friday morning when I happened to look more closely at the "mold" and saw a living creature in it. I quickly proceeded to trim the plant back until it was just the healthiest new growth and sprayed it down with soapy water. I then spent about 30 minutes making sure every single one of the little guys was wiped off the face of the earth...or at least my plant. I later found out that I had been infested with "mealybugs". They are a kind of parasite that attaches it self to the more exotic plants or fruit plants. How they happened it come to be in my house in the middle of a winter freeze, I can only guess. Now the only thing left to do is keep an eye on the Jasmine and make sure they don't come back.

I continue to stay sane with the occasional sewing project, and Jeremy has indulged his taste for fiction by exploring some new books.

That's it for now. Until next time,
  • jeepinskeeter
    Love this entry, Anna! I'm always amazed when you find time and energy to post. Thanks for the sweet comments on my blog...and you're right--I usually don't feel any older than my girls. One book that doesn't turn out too badly for the dog is Dean Koontz's The Watchers. That particular book is just so likable. The characters are good, and the dog (a golden, of course) is fabulous.
    by jeepinskeeter at 01/07/08 8:31PM
  • kisforkristin
    Never heard of mealybugs. They sound....ummm....dangerous. I am glad to hear about all of the kids' little but big moments. I hope we'll be able to see all of you more, as David and Sarah just moved out to Louisville, KY. Aarron just got back from helping them move out there. So, when I come to visit my little niece, it's not much of a detour to come see you! I am also looking forward to seeing you at Lindsey's wedding. It has been too long!
    by kisforkristin at 01/08/08 11:57AM
  • kisforkristin
    Is the wedding going to be in Louisville or that general area? I forgot to ask Lindsey when I was talking with her and I want to start looking for plane tickets!
    by kisforkristin at 01/08/08 8:29PM
  • dehutmom
    Loved visiting with you guys!! Your "men" looked great! A testament to your wonderful care.
    by dehutmom at 01/13/08 12:09PM
  • dehutmom
    Oh, Anna! My pleasure, I assure you. Thank you for your sweet words. Can't wait to see you all again real soon! love ya!
    by dehutmom at 01/15/08 11:30AM
  • robynbobm
    The boys seem to be always sweet. What is your best parenting tip?
    by robynbobm at 01/18/08 11:16PM
  • craigdehut
    Hey! I get to see you guys this weekend! Can't wait! And I hear that Cooper is on the verge of chattin' it up! That's awesome! :)
    by craigdehut at 01/22/08 6:12PM
  • kisforkristin
    I am so happy to hear about Cooper. That is fantastic!
    by kisforkristin at 01/29/08 11:35AM
  • artistic
    hi miss Anna, i didn't know you were on here.(cydni)
    by artistic at 02/21/08 9:19PM
  • kisforkristin
    New post sometime??? PLLLLEEEEAAASSSEEE.......
    by kisforkristin at 02/25/08 11:15AM
  • craigdehut
    (Read the following in the loud, obnoxious, and unbelievably offkey way typical of Dehut Birthday Songs) Happy birthday to you, happy birthday to yooooou, HHAAAAAPPPYYYY BBBIIIRRRTTHHHDDAAAYYY DDEEEEAAARRRR AAAANNNNAAAA! Happy Birthday to You! :)
    by craigdehut at 02/25/08 3:16PM
  • dehutmom
    Happy Birthday sweet Anna!! I hope you and your husband are having a wonderful, sweet time away! See you soon!!
    by dehutmom at 02/25/08 10:09PM
  • create_a_way
    hey, you don't know me, but i'm a fan of your family
    by create_a_way at 02/25/08 10:54PM
  • create_a_way
    your mother in law told me there was a website were I could get some of your husbands sermons. is that true?
    by create_a_way at 02/25/08 10:54PM
  • create_a_way
    thanks Jeremy...I've heard great things about you!
    by create_a_way at 02/28/08 12:12PM
  • artistic
    by artistic at 03/06/08 3:41PM
  • robynbobm
    Are you still alive?
    by robynbobm at 03/06/08 6:57PM
  • cyber_space_cadet
    ^As of last night when I saw her at the building, she was still alive and kickin'.

    .....Well.....maybe not kickin'. :)
    by cyber_space_cadet at 03/06/08 7:33PM
  • robynbobm
    by robynbobm at 03/06/08 8:23PM
  • beavermom
    Anna! Where are you? Oregon misses you! OK it's me who misses you!
    by beavermom at 03/07/08 9:50PM

Someday I will have time to really update...

...but for now, here are the cliffnotes:

Jeremy is really enjoying his counseling classes even though they keep him away from us from early Monday morning until late at night. He and I have almost finished the tiling job in our master bathroom. A whirlpool bath is just around the corner!

Cianan is loving helping with his brothers' therapy, learning about God in Bible class, and playing with his many friends. He also can't wait to have all his uncles, aunt, and grandparents cycling through the house in the next couple of weeks.

Cooper just finished up 10 strait days of fussing. We are all thankful for that. He's growing up so big and is a joy to everyone he encounters(especially now that he's not fussy all the time =).

Whit continues to improve. He's holding his head a little more each day and learns something new with each achievement God allows him to make.

And me? Well, I'm just trying to keep up! =)

Love you all!
  • beavermom
    So glad to hear the boys are improving! AS your family cycles through, please give them all a hug from the Mitts'! We love you all, and hold you in our hearts and prayers!
    by beavermom at 11/16/07 5:15PM
  • curlie
    by curlie at 11/16/07 9:09PM
  • cyber_space_cadet
    I know it's tough, but I think you do an amazing job at "just keeping up." ;)

    And...that tile job in your bathroom is almost breathtaking. Very beautiful.

    Love you!
    by cyber_space_cadet at 11/17/07 12:13AM
  • jeepinskeeter
    Glad Cooper is done with his fussy spell. I think that's pretty unusual for him, isn't it? He's always so pleasant. All of your boys are growing like weeds! The good kind of weed, I mean, not the kind that causes allergies or anything.
    by jeepinskeeter at 11/17/07 8:36AM
  • jeepinskeeter
    Well, and "good kind of weed" also doesn't refer to anything toxic, either.
    by jeepinskeeter at 11/17/07 8:37AM
  • cyber_space_cadet
    Well, I think that most people would be pretty...uhhh...relieved? not to have their toilet in their bedroom anymore. :P

    I'm looking forward to seeing the bathroom allll finished. I know it's going to be really pretty, and I'm happy for you guys that it'll be finished "on time."
    by cyber_space_cadet at 11/17/07 11:51AM
  • cyber_space_cadet
    ^^AWWW! What a sweet visual! So cute. =)

    Everyone in this house LOVES Gus Gus, so Cooper's in *great* company. :D
    by cyber_space_cadet at 11/17/07 11:53AM
  • robynbobm
    I am glad every time I hear a good report about your family. :)
    by robynbobm at 11/17/07 1:39PM
  • kisforkristin
    Sometimes keeping up is the BEST achievement. :o) Post pictures of the house when you can. I'd love to see your progress....for that matter, I'd love to see the house at all! And I echo Kathy's sentiment....give our love to all the various Russells and Dehuts that might be running through there. Your in my thoughts and prayers.
    by kisforkristin at 11/18/07 10:36PM
  • mpettes
    Hi Anna :). Thanks for the plate of cookies even though my mom and sister tried to talk you out of it :)
    by mpettes at 12/15/07 8:58AM
  • cyber_space_cadet
    ^ :-D That was a rather entertaining exchange. LOL.
    by cyber_space_cadet at 12/15/07 11:53AM
  • beavermom
    Miss Anna, happy holidays to you all! I'll be pretty busy from here on out, but wanted to give you a cyber-hug! Love you !!
    by beavermom at 12/20/07 7:20PM
  • queenbeetle
    Hope you all had a great Christmas and New Years. Sorry you got to feeling bad when you all where down to Louisville and we didn't get to see you. Maybe next time, Take care!
    by queenbeetle at 01/04/08 1:33PM
  • dehutmom
    Hi Anna! You do such a wonderful job with all your guys. Young and old-er. Can't wait to see what this new year holds for all you "Dehuts".
    by dehutmom at 01/05/08 10:38PM

Saw this quote...it made me laugh

If there are no stupid questions, then what kind of questions do stupid people ask? Do they get smart just in time to ask questions?
- Scott Adams

Whit seems to have benifited greatly from a week with mommy's undivided attention, supplimental fluids, and some of the new therapy. We got to sit through more than half of Bible class on Wednesday(about 25 minutes longer than we have since he was born), and today he started laughing at a squeeky toy I was showing him for the first time ever(the reaction not the toy, he'd seen the toy before). Laughs and smile are beginning to outnumber the cries, and one of the most frustrating things about his delays is being remedied: talking to him is finally starting to calm down his crying!

Cooper continues to be a blessing, and Cianan is getting to the point where he will really flourish with a little one-on-one time with an activity to challenge his brain, i.e. school-type activities. He's been at that stage for a while, I'm just finally to the point where I have enough time and energy to start thinking about it and doing something about it. =)

Life for us is good and busy. God continues to stretch us spiritually and find ways for us to keep busy physically. Keep us in your prayers and know that you're continually in ours.
  • meditationis
    I noticed Whit has been doing better in class. Yeah!!
    by meditationis at 09/14/07 8:11PM
  • cyber_space_cadet
    That is so great about Whit. And, Cooper is soooooo cute, especially when he resists his therapy and then laughs AT us (not with us). And, of course you know how I feel about My Reading Buddy. :) It is SO SWEET that he remembered Andrew in his prayers. (*warm fuzzies*) Andrew will be touched when he hears that.
    by cyber_space_cadet at 09/14/07 9:45PM
  • cherri
    Great news, Anna! Hey... I need to come get that tshirt sometime... is there an afternoon this coming week that works best for you? I could come after school one day... that is, assuming I get any subbing jobs this week, of course! (So far, I don't have any scheduled because they are starting ISTEP testing.) So, it's possible I won't have to work at all this week and I could come during the day. Just let me know what works best for you and the boys!
    by cherri at 09/15/07 12:11PM
  • beavermom
    My lovely Miss Anna-it was so good to see you! I'm sorry I kept calling Whit by Cooper's name, but I haven't seen you in so long, and it's the first time we've met Whit, and I'm getting old and very tired!;) I'm glad your trip was profitable, and I hope we can see you all soon! Love ya!
    by beavermom at 09/16/07 12:49AM
  • cherri
    sewing and quilting!? I have two "started" quilt tops, which I never found time to finish up. :-\ If I came tonight, I'd have to bring Rikki (see my blog) with me, and I'm not too sure she'd be so thrilled about sewing. :-P If I sub at all this week, it will probably be only in the afternoon. So... I'
    by cherri at 09/17/07 3:21PM
  • cherri
    d probably drop by one morning. Since you have ppl over tomorrow morning, want to shoot for Wed or Thurs morning?
    by cherri at 09/17/07 3:22PM
  • cherri
    On the other hand, if I don't get called to sub tomorrow afternoon, I might drop by around therapy time to visit for a bit. Just let me know what sounds good for you guys!
    by cherri at 09/17/07 3:23PM
  • cherri
    OK, I'm subbing all day today and Thursday... only time left is Wednesday morning (as of right now), or sometime next week (I'll be out of town this weekend).
    by cherri at 09/18/07 6:46AM
  • robynbobm
    It was good to see you. :)
    by robynbobm at 09/19/07 1:07AM
  • cherri
    SOunds great... my email addy is [email protected]
    Just let me know how to get there, and I'll be there! :)
    by cherri at 09/19/07 8:20AM
  • joe
    that'd be so fun!
    by joe at 09/19/07 9:40PM
  • kisforkristin
    I'm glad that your trip has been helpful for Whit. I had a chance to check up on your posts that I missed the past few months. Are you planning to homeschool the kids?
    by kisforkristin at 09/21/07 2:09PM
  • cyber_space_cadet
    Thank you! :)
    by cyber_space_cadet at 09/29/07 9:47PM
  • jeepinskeeter
    I didn't even consider that you might not homeschool! Your situation makes it a definite advantage to homeschool, and you will be a terrific teacher. I mean, you ARE a terrific teacher.
    by jeepinskeeter at 10/05/07 7:50AM
  • jeepinskeeter
    Thing is, of all the people in the world, I would never intend to cause you any trouble at all. Boy was I having trouble with leg/arm thing yesterday--at least in my head. Hopefully, my hands were doing the right thign.
    by jeepinskeeter at 10/05/07 11:35PM
  • jeepinskeeter
    (Obviously, my fingers are not listening tonight. Must be bedtime.)
    by jeepinskeeter at 10/05/07 11:35PM
  • kisforkristin
    I hope you can visit the Islands again sometime. You are always welcome to stay with us. :o) How are the boys doing? Any more improvements?
    by kisforkristin at 10/10/07 1:46AM
  • pbandchoc
    Missing you! I want to read an update.
    by pbandchoc at 10/11/07 5:17PM
  • cyber_space_cadet
    You are absolutely welcome! *We* are blessed by the experience, and we thank you for the opportunity. We love you guys! ♥
    by cyber_space_cadet at 10/22/07 3:45PM