I do have to preface by saying these are a bit longer than "Quick" Takes...
1. Wow. Has it really been that long since we've last posted? I must apologize - especially to all those that I still owe phone calls! But I can't believe how busy we have been over the past couple weeks. Michael has been steadily chipping away at the remodel upstairs, getting everything ready for one last push this coming weekend. And, me? You'd think I would get to slow down being I'm almost 33 weeks pregnant! Yet, God has other plans and praise be to him because he has provided the time I need to fit it all in.
2. Theology of the Body Update. This past Saturday I led a day-long Theology of the Body retreat to high schoolers down in Chehalis. I made it home by 4:00pm and then it was a quick change of clothes and off to Mass and a Couple's Dinner at Our Lady Star of the Sea in Bremerton. (What a beautiful parish - I hadn't been since before the remodel...) I was scheduled to give a talk to married couples that night on the Sanctity of Marriage and again, praise be to God, because he spoke through me despite my sickie voice. Sunday night was Youth Group and tonight I give another talk at University of Puget Sound. I'm also gearing up for a 12-week course beginning next Sunday for both St. Charles' and St. Patrick's youth groups. Luckily this is something I love to do and know God is calling me to do so, no matter how pregnant I am, He will get me through because it is His ministry, not mine.
3. Lent has arrived. Last year, the time of Lent helped me kick the habit of too much T.V. This year I am focusing on things that Michael has been asking of me, but I have either been too selfish or too inattentive to pay attention to. Instead of just giving something up simply because it is Lent, I love this time because it forces me to look at the areas of my life I've wanted to change for a long time but haven't had the motivation to work on. I look at Lent as a time to build habits that I can carry with me after Lent is over. Part of this is spending more time with Christ and, in addition to my sacrifices, I will be going to Mass or Adoration during the week (which, oddly enough, I am very excited to do!). I have also made sure not to take too much on. When I was in college, I used to give up so much during Lent that it almost burnt me out on sacrifice. However, I am taking things one or two at a time to make sure I really change certain areas of my life before moving on to others.
4. Making sure Avila is not neglected...Because we've been super busy, I have had to make an extra effort to see that Avila is getting enough mommy and daddy time. There were a couple weeks a while back where she was super clingy and, how shall we say it, annoying. I realized it was because we were going too much and didn't have enough down time together. As a result, I make it a point to do something fun with her in the mornings - swimming class, a trip to the zoo (luckily it's only 5 minutes away), painting at the Children's Museum, or a trek to the park. She has been much happier ever since I stopped ignoring her.
5. Avila has also been happy because she is now in her big-girl bedroom! It's official - no more crib! After begging all last weekend to sleep in her "taco" bed (toddler bed), she moved in to her new room. In her room she has a train set, a desk, a comfy chair, all her babies, and all her dress-up clothes. With all that loot who wouldn't want to sleep in there? Ever since she moved into her room she has been spazzy - like the singing all. the. time. and dancing around in circles kind of spazzy. While it was difficult at first to give up rocking her in the nursery, I see she is growing up to be an incredible, beautiful little girl and I wouldn't change that for the world.
6. Hmmm...what to update about baby Mauss...As mentioned above, we are just about 33 weeks preggo. Despite being a bit more tired, I'm still feeling pretty good. I do think it's funny, however, that in the 3rd trimester sleep doesn't come as easy. God should've made this a time to bank up on awesome, uninterrupted sleep - not to prepare for baby by getting little sleep before hand. Maybe it's Adam and Eve's fault - you know, the whole pain in childbearing curse from after the fall?
7. The things kids say and do. Avila, like many kids her age, says the funniest things sometimes. I will leave you with a few quotes from the past couple weeks:
~While walking down on Ruston, Avila saw a younger lady with her hair in a ponytail and tight clothes on running past us. She yelled out "Go Lion cheer!" She thought she was a cheerleader...
~Randomly, Avila will shout out, "No puking!"
~While out to dinner with Michael's family one night, Avila had me draw pictures of: mama, Avila, Grandma, Grandpa, Auntie Shelley, Uncle Jonathan, Tommy, and the mailman. Um, notice who's missing and who's in his place?
~"Lord, have mercy. Christ, have mercy. Lord, have mercy." It's never to early to start asking for forgiveness, I guess.
~Every time I go to the bathroom, Avila says "Good job, mama!"