Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Getting Into the Christmas Spirit

Christmas is my favorite time of the year.  I know that Christmas is technically one day, but it really starts for me on Black Friday when I wholeheartedly begin Christmas shopping.  Christmas, for me, is the whole season and is really about spending time with others and sharing in our blessings through gifts.

Christmas is meaningful to me because it allows us to perpetuate the gift that God sent to us in His son many years ago.  Because of that gift, and only because of Him, we enjoy many blessings and good things in this life.  I try to make gift-giving not only about the Christmas season, but all year through, but Christmas gives us the perfect opportunity to share.

This season is special because there are many traditions associated with it, as well as lots of family time.  Everyone has quirky families.  My cousin said, a month or so ago, that when our family does something, we do it big . . . what she means is that when we get together or when someone needs something, everyone is there.  That is what makes it so special and meaningful.

Ever since I can remember, my parents have taken my brother and I to cut down Christmas trees.  When Ryan and I were dating, he went along on the trip, but didn't get a say in the tree because it wasn't "his."  Christmas is such a special time for me, Ryan and I chose to get married the weekend before Christmas.  I cannot find a picture of the first time Ryan and I cut down a Christmas tree together, but here's Aubrey's first tree.

Yes, that is Ryan cutting it down.

One year, Ryan and I got a very tall tree that almost didn't fit into our house.  We have lower ceilings in the new house.  This is the tree that Aubrey wanted this year.
 This is the tree that we brought home!
Another tradition that we have is baking Christmas cookies.  We we were young, my mom and her sisters all got together to bake cookies and my grandma took us kids to the movies.  Now, all the grandmas are doing the baking and so the kids get to help as well.  Here are the girls helping with the measuring last Saturday.

Aubrey sat on Santa's lap when I was away for work this year.  She called me after they were done and very excitedly told me that Santa had told her that she was a good girl this year.  She couldn't believe that she was on the good list.  I tried to tell her that maybe Santa had the wrong kid, but she was convinced that he knew who she was and that she was good!  I guess I'll agree with Santa.
Very soon I will have to begin wrapping presents, my least favorite part of Christmas :).  Then it will be time to gather with family and friends and share our blessings.

We hope that you all have a Merry Christmas and as you begin looking towards the new year, that you'll be blessed in 2013.


Thursday, November 22, 2012

What are you thankful for?

Aubrey has been waiting for Thanksgiving for a few days and she knew right away when she woke up this morning that it was today!  I'm not sure why she is so excited, except that she knows Thanksgiving meant that we have 5 stay home days.

I asked her what she was thankful for and she said "Mommy, Lilly (her doll baby), turkey, and vanilla."

I am thankful for having a beautiful, healthy little girl.  I am thankful for a job that keeps me busy, but is enjoyable.  I am thankful for Ryan's parents and my parents who are willing to help out and watch Aubrey on Monday nights so I can teach a class.  I am thankful that I have friends and family close by that we can visit with often.  I am thankful for being blessed with many comforts and I am thankful that I have resources available to share with others in need.

It is going to be a beautiful day.  Aubrey and I hope each one of you have a Blessed Thanksgiving.


Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Welcoming Kids Into Worship

I recently read an article in Thriving Family about kids in Sunday worship.  It was interesting timing for  this article.  I was reading a newsletter submission that my mom wrote for our church about having kids in the service this past summer.  While I enjoyed Aubrey being in the adult service with me, she was sometimes a distraction because although she enjoys singing, she doesn't enjoy sitting still.  I wanted to share the article with all of you because it gave me a different perspective.  You can find it on Thriving Family's website.

Friday, November 2, 2012


Aubrey was very into trick-or-treat this year.  We went looking for a costume in early October and couldn't really decide on anything.  She was wavering between being a cat or a dog, but when we went to the store, she didn't see anything she liked.  So, she finally decided she would like to be a bumblebee and so I found a costume for her online.

When it came in the mail, she could hardly wait for Halloween when she could wear it.  When I told her that she would get to dress up for trick-or-treat, to visit Great Grandma Wyne, for preschool, and for church, she was even more excited.  She started telling people that she got to wear her costume 4 times this year.

So, here is the little bumblebee in all her glory.  I don't even know what to do with all the candy we have!


Sunday, October 14, 2012

Bradford Pumpkin Show

Last week, we visited some children's activities at the Pumpkin Show in Bradford.  On Tuesday afternoon, we went to the tricycle races.  There were only 2 four year olds signed up, and when it was their turn, Aubrey was the only one who would go to the tricycle.  She won a trophy!

On Thursday, we went back to the Kiddie Tractor pull.  Aubrey made a full pull the first time, and was one of 9 who pulled again, but she didn't make it whole way the second time.  She was disappointed that she didn't get another trophy, but I think she had fun.

This weekend we went to the swap meet at Lucasville.  We haven't been for over 2 years and Aubrey didn't really remember going before.  She was amazed at all the animals that were there for sale.  She found some toys and candy!


Friday, September 7, 2012

Why I Love Being a Mom

It has always been one of my dreams to be a mom and I really do love the job.  There are things that I don't like about it, but here's why I love it.  Aubrey is calling for me at 2:00 this morning (that's not the part I love).  I get up and go to her room and she tells me she dropped Lily (her doll).  Lily is right beside her bed; I'm sure she could see her.  Instead of getting out of her bed and picking her up, she called me.  I was a bit grumpy but didn't say anything to her.  I handed her Lily and covered her back up and gave her a kiss and she looked at me and said, "I love you mommy" and rolled over, stuck her thumb in her mouth, and was back to sleep.  That's all I needed to make getting up at 2:00 worth it!


Monday, September 3, 2012

Going to Preschool

Aubrey's baby-sitter decided at the beginning of August that she'd like to go to work at a full-time job.  That left us searching for a baby-sitter with just a few weeks before I had to return to work.  I am very happy for Sandy and I believe she did the right thing for her family.  I had been struggling with whether Aubrey would go to preschool because I wasn't sure where she'd go or how I would get her there, so I was taking that into consideration as I was thinking about Aubrey's next baby-sitter.  

We visited the YMCA here in Versailles and Aubrey seemed to like the visit.  There were lots of opportunities for her to do things during the day while I was at work, which would help in protecting our time together in the evenings.

I finally decided that the Y would be the best place for her to go, and that it would take care of the preschool issue in the future.  What I didn't realize was that basically, I was signing her up for preschool right now.  I am sitting in the office, finishing up something while she is in the bathtub playing.  I can hear her talking to herself and realize that she is doing her best to recite the Pledge of Allegiance.  She clearly says United States of America, indivisible, and for all.  Many of the words in between are jumbled up, but she's learning it!  Earlier this weekend, she was telling me the months of the year.  Something else she has learned in 1 week of preschool.  Way to go preschool!

Ever since Aubrey could say the word school, she has informed anyone in the car when we go by Versailles School, that it is her school.  She loves to walk over to the playground, but has always been concerned that there aren't any swings.  Right before school started, the playground got swings.  Aubrey has been very excited about this fact, but we haven't had time to walk over there and swing.  I told her that after her nap today, we could walk over there.  It was sprinkling after her nap, but she didn't care, she wanted to try out those swings.  We walked over to the playground in the rain, and she gave those swings a good test.  I think she approves.


Thursday, August 23, 2012

The Great Darke County Fair

Growing up, we went to the fair to ride rides and walk around.  I remember having enough chances to go, if I wanted to.  When I got to high school and college age, I could have cared less about going to the fair - it just wasn't my thing.  Then I met Ryan - Ryan loved the fair.  He wanted to be there every day if possible.  I remember the first summer we were dating and he made me by a pass; I couldn't understand why I would need to buy that . . . we got our money's worth.

Most of you know that Aubrey was born about 2 1/2 weeks before the fair started.  Silly me thought we wouldn't go near as much that year.  I think I stayed home a few extra days than normal, but Ryan still managed to go most days.

Two years ago today, on Monday of the fair, Ryan went home to be with our Lord.  If there ever was a time that we'd definitely remember him, I think the fair is a good one.

I'd like to say I don't go to the fair as much now, but loving it must be in the Wulber blood.  (I do enjoy going as well).

We have been to the fair every day but Tuesday so far!  We watched 2 of Grandpa Wulber's horses get first place in their races - Friday night and Saturday.  Aubrey got to be in the race photos and was so excited.

On Sunday, we walked around a bit and rode rides - the big ferris wheel was the excitement of the day.

On Monday, Aubrey participated in the Little Miss Darke County Pageant.  She was disappointed that she didn't receive a trophy, but I thought she looked cute anyway :)

Also on Monday night, Aubrey and I rode the big viking ship at the fair.  Yesterday afternoon, we rode rides with Camryn and Kaitlyn, and part of the time with a little girl from church.  Aubrey ride the viking ship several more times, even once without me.

I took the day off work today, so we will go back to the fair.  Tomorrow evening, Aubrey will be in the kiddle tractor pull.


Saturday, August 11, 2012

Aubrey turns 4!

 I cannot believe that Aubrey is 4 already!  She had her birthday party last Sunday afternoon.  We had a carnival in our back yard; it was a lot of fun.  We played ring toss and basketball.  We also had a can game where you threw a beanbag and tried to knock down the cans.  The wind helped with that.  Aubrey wanted snow cones, so I bought a snow cone machine; they were a big hit.

Aubrey got a big girl bike for her birthday.  She also got a pair of skates.  On Monday, we went to Jumpy's with our friends Curtis, Karen, Conner, Caden, and Carson.  The kids had a good time, but Aubrey was worn out by the afternoon!  She is now looking forward to the fair.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Congratulations Class of 1998

I read in the paper today that the Versailles Class of 1998 won the alumni softball tournament.  I'm sure that Ryan was with you in spirit and Aubrey and I say congratulations!!


Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Enjoying Mother Nature

We went on Aubrey's first ever camping trip this week.  She thought it was pretty neat and we'll probably have to go again sometime!  My parents went along, they did most of the work :)  We also took Kaitlyn and Camryn along - their first camping trip as well.  We went to Lake Loramie and stayed in one of their Rent-a-Camp's so that we didn't have to pitch our own tent.

We made s'mores around the campfire, went fishing, swam at the beach, played putt-putt golf, rode bikes around the campground, and played at the playground.  I think the bikes might have been one of the favorite activities.

Friday, July 6, 2012

Ryan Would Be Proud

My cousin got married tonight and we went to the wedding and reception.  When the music started, Aubrey couldn't wait to get out onto the dance floor - she obviously has Ryan's dancing blood - she didn't get that desire from me!  As always, they did the bride and groom's first dance, dance with the parents, etc.  When it was time for Aubrey to be able to dance, they started with the electric slide, which a couple of years ago, I could have done with Ryan, but haven't in a long time that I couldn't remember how to do it.  The next dance was the cha cha and I told Aubrey she could go out and dance, but she wanted me to go along.  I did end up dancing with her and it wasn't so bad; I know that Ryan is proud of me tonight :)


Saturday, June 30, 2012

Aubrey's First Boating Trip

Russell invited us to go boating with him today and it was Aubrey's first boating trip.  Based on the smiles on everyone's faces, I think we'll probably be going on more boating trips in the future.  Aubrey couldn't wait to get up this morning and put on her life jacket.  We had to pry it off of her to get her into her car seat.
All the way to the lake, she wondered how the boat was going to get into the water and if Uncle Russell was going to take the wheels off the trailer.  When we put the boat into the water, she basically missed the trailer pulling away because we had to convince her we were floating on the water.  Once we got going, all she wanted to do was go fast.

We swam for a while and she got to drive, and then she also rode on the tube with Uncle Russell.  She was so tired at one point that she laid down on the floor of the boat and fell asleep for a little while.  It was a beautiful day and the lake wasn't too crowded and we had a ton of fun!


Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Enjoying Summer Time

I am in my second week of "summer" but it doesn't feel much like I'm having a break. I've been working some of the days that I am required to for work and I'm also teaching a class on Monday and Wednesday evenings at Wright State. That is a new experience for me. I think it is going well.

Aubrey had a whole week of dance recital practice and performance that started on June 9 and ended on June 16.  Each day for a whole week we had something going on a Memorial Hall.  She was a pretty, little butterfly.  She was tired by the end of the experience, but she really enjoyed it.

On Tuesday morning Aubrey and I had the privilege to attend the HOPE Foundation's Scholarship Presentations and give the first scholarship in Ryan's name to a deserving student who graduated from Mississinawa Valley and is now studying at The Ohio State University.

Aubrey played in the sprinkler yesterday afternoon.  Here she is striking a pose for you all.  She was more worried about what the picture looked like than playing in the water!

Monday, May 28, 2012

Much Needed Rest

This long weekend has been long awaited and much enjoyed around the Wulber household! I have been extremely busy with work the past few weeks and Aubrey had an eye doctor appointment on Friday, so I took the day off and we had an extra long weekend. We got some things done around the house and I caught up on bills and other things that were piling up on my desk. Aubrey has been swimming at Papaw and Mamaw's house a couple of time and she playing in the sprinkler at home yesterday. It has just been a very nice weekend. Praise God and bless the families of Veterans who gave up their lives for the freedoms we enjoy! -A

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Mother's Day

I know it has been almost a week since Mother's Day, but I haven't had time to sit down at the computer long enough to transfer pictures and compose this blog.  Aubrey got me some garden decorations for Mother's Day and she couldn't wait to give me my present Sunday morning. She even signed the card all my herself! Brandi and I made lunch for my mom on Sunday, but the girls had to do the dishes. We spent Sunday evening with the Wulber family at Auntie Rachel's house. Aubrey loves to spend time with Uncle Nathan and Uncle Russell because she loves the attention and rough-housing time that she gets when she sees them. It is times like these that make me miss Ryan the most. Not only for me, but for Aubrey who is missing the special things that daddies have to give that I don't always have the time or energy to give. Mother's Day has been a bittersweet day the past couple of years. Ryan's first mother's day gift to me, when Aubrey was almost a year old was my dishwasher. I think I will be forever grateful for that gift as I don't have time to wash dishes all the time, nor do I like to wash dishes! I hope you all had the chance to enjoy family time on Mother's Day. -A

Sunday, May 6, 2012

The Fruit of the Spirit

The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, and peace, patience, kindness, and goodness. The Fruit of the Spirit is faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. We have been studying the fruit of the spirit at church the past three Sundays. The children sang a song for us this morning and those first two sentences are the chorus of the song. It is a song that they sing in their own worship time on Sunday mornings and Wednesday nights and every time I hear it, it gets stuck in my head.

Mike (our minister) has been sharing with us about how we can have unlimited amounts of the fruits - if we choose to take them from Jesus - he offers them always, we just need to be ready and willing to take them. Think about it - who doesn't want more love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control? I don't think there's anyone who could say they wouldn't enjoy having more of those. I think the fruit I need the most of is patience - especially with Aubrey. She is a very independent soul and likes to take her own time to complete each and every thing she does throughout the day. I often require extra patience with her and depending on the day, sometimes run out. This is something that I pray continually for more of!

Our sermon today was about the last three fruits - faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. I should have been taking notes today because I kept finding myself shaking my head and I wanted to share more about what I was learning with you, but I don't remember everything he said. One thing I do know is that we talked about trusting and having faith that God's telling us the truth by sending his son and giving us the Bible.

We also read Philippians 4:4 and then I read on and want to share the passage here (it really spoke to me today) "Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable - if anything is excellent or praiseworthy - think about such things." Philippians 4:4-8

We have a few prayer requests - I have two very busy weeks at work coming, where I will have a different schedule than normal. I pray that Aubrey will be ok in the evenings after having to get up early for several days in a row. I also want to ask for prayer for some good friends of ours.

Thank you all for continuing to pray for us


Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Star-Studded Chicago Visit

I have just returned from 3 1/2 days in Chicago at the International Reading Association Conference. I left Sunday afternoon and arrived much earlier than I planned to in Chicago, because there was a time change that I hadn't thought about. We had dinner Sunday evening with Greg Tang, famous for his books about math puzzles and mathematical thinking - he is very funny.
On Monday, we had three authors on our panel presentation, and the Two Sisters, famous for The Daily 5 and The Cafe attended our presentation. They were sitting in the back and I spotted them and made them pose for a picture with me. Also have pictures with Janet Stevens and Susan Stevens Crummel and Simone Elkeles, the three authors on our panel.
I met Jane Yolen, Robert Burleigh, and Nick Bruel.
Monday night we had dinner with Holiday House authors and I got to sit next to Laurie Lawlor all evening. We had a wonderful time, but did not get her picture :( Tuesday morning I got to attend a Scholastic sponsored breakfast and heard Mem Fox speak. I talked with Kate Messner. I went to dinner with some new friends from Columbus on Tuesday night. We planned a walking trip to eat and shop down the Magnificent Mile. After our 2 1/2 hour dinner, it was raining and we got soaked on the way to the American Girl store. Nevertheless, I did get some doll clothes for Aubrey's Itty Bitty doll and a shirt for Aubrey. She also got a book signed by Jim Aylesworth. I believe she was more excited about the signed book than the doll clothes. I went to much more trouble for the doll clothes than the signed book!
This morning we had breakfast with Ruth Culham, of Traits Writing fame. I attend sessions and spoke with professional authors, Laura Robb and Janet Allen. I am now extremely tired and still have many bags to unpack! -A

Monday, April 9, 2012

Happy Easter

Aubrey was excited about Easter egg hunts and seeing the Easter Bunny this year. After dance on Friday, we ran into a friend who told us there were chicks and the Easter Bunny in front of the court house, so we ventured over to see.

Aubrey hunted for Easter eggs three separate times. She got some bubble bath in one of her eggs and took her first ever bubble bath last night.


Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Busy Week

Aubrey had a very busy week last week, me too since I haven't had time to blog until now :)

Grandpa's horse, Kaptain Kosmo raced at Hoosier Park last Tuesday night and Aubrey and I drove over to watch "her horse" race. Kaptain had the 8 hole, which meant that he was starting in the 2nd row of horses, but he came out to the lead right away. He kept the lead, sometimes at 2 or 2 1/2 lengths ahead of the other horses, for 3/4 of the race. As he was coming into the last stretch, he lost his momentum and ended up finishing 7th. It was a good race and Aubrey was jumping up and down, screaming for Kaptain the whole time. She really enjoyed it.

The next day, she got to go to Grandpa's house and help him on the farm for 3 hours! She fed the mules and Uncle Russell's goat and went into the haymow. She also helped jog the horses behind Grandpa's truck.

On Saturday we went to Shawnee Prairie and dyed Easter eggs using natural materials.

While we were there, we also picked up a turtle.

Saturday we went to Leesburg to visit with our friends, the Shoemakers. We had a "sleepover" as Aubrey calls it and went to church with them Sunday morning where we got to witness Conner, their oldest son, be baptized.

Sunday evening, we came back north and went to Auntie Rachel and Uncle Nathan's house where we celebrated Great-Grandma's belated birthday and an early Easter. Aubrey loves being around Uncle Nathan and Uncle Russell because they turn her upside down and play with her, they also tried to catch a bunny rabbit out in the yard; they weren't successful. While there Aubrey, Grammy, and Auntie Rachel also treated us to a special song: ABC Rock. I left my camera in the car, sorry no pictures :)

Aubrey is again at Grammy and Grandpa's house today and is looking forward to hunting for Easter eggs this weekend.

We hope that you are able to celebrate the Resurrection of our Lord Jesus with your family this weekend.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Finally Home

Aubrey and I have returned to our house; we are sleeping in our own beds for the first time in 3 weeks! Aubrey climbed right into hers and was asleep quickly. I am thinking that I will do the same. We took a walk to the library tonight, one of Aubrey's favorite places to walk to. She also played in the back yard with some of the neighbor kids. She is going to Sandy's tomorrow and is excited. I will drive tomorrow for the first time in 3 weeks as well!


Monday, March 5, 2012

Feeling Pretty Good

I have been out of the hospital for three full days now. I feel much better than I expected to. I am getting around slowly and have driving and lifting restrictions, but feel ok. Thank you all for your prayers.


Thursday, March 1, 2012

Coming Home

I got to eat food today for the first time since Sunday. I feel good, very little to no pain. The doctor was in just a little while ago and said I get to go home tomorrow around noon. Yea!

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Surgery Over, Recovery Starting

My surgery is over and I'm in my room. Things went as the doctor planned. I called Aubrey once I was able and she told me she was having a good day, and that she took a nap, and played with a friend, and then she was done talking. That's a 3 year old for you! I am not currently on any pain meds, and feel a little uncomfortable, but ok. I continue to pray that recovery will go well.

Gretta - I finished reading a book already today ;)


Friday, February 24, 2012

Prayer Request

Next Tuesday I will be having some surgery to repair a torn muscle and tear that I have from having Aubrey. I will be in the hospital in Cincinnati for the remainder of that week. Aubrey will be staying with my parents and she is a little nervous about me going to the hospital. After I come home, I won't be able to drive or lift anything, so we'll be staying with my parents for several days.

Please pray for us all and that my recovery goes smoothly.


Sunday, February 19, 2012

Visit to Sandusky

Aubrey and I spent three days in Sandusky this weekend. We left Friday afternoon and headed up to stay at the Kalahari Indoor Waterpark and we had a good time. I am not the world's greatest picture taker, so I didn't take any picture of Aubrey at the waterpark or playing on the indoor playground. We did go outside to see the animals, not very many of them were outside, but Aubrey enjoyed seeing the goats and rabbits :).

Here's one picture of her:

Saturday afternoon we left the waterpark and met up with our friends Justin and Tricia and their kids. We spent the rest of the weekend with them and we got to celebrate Cassidy and Cade's first birthday with them today before heading home. Aubrey's naps and sleeping times are a little messed up so we're hoping to sleep in tomorrow, or at least I'm hoping she sleeps in tomorrow. We had a great time and we are enjoying our long weekend break from work.


Saturday, January 28, 2012

Breakfast with Princesses

This morning Aubrey and I went to Richmond to have breakfast at the Storybook Cafe. All the Disney Princesses were there. We had a pancake breakfast and then we got to meet each princess and get her autograph. We also saw a few princes as well. Aubrey dressed up as Dora and got a new crown for playing dress up.


Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Out of the Mouths of Babes

Last night Aubrey and I were praying and it was her turn. She thanked God for giving us Jesus so that he could take care of Daddy while he's in Heaven. She amazes me sometimes!


Monday, January 16, 2012

Speeding Through January

I can't believe that it is already January 16! We are halfway through the first month of 2012 and it doesn't seem possible. We haven't been doing much exciting stuff.

Russell moved into the farm house, his house, on January 1 or 2; I can't remember the exact date. He had us out this past Saturday to see the updates and he's done a fantastic job. I'm going to post one picture of the kitchen and anyone who's been in the house will notice several differences. He has put a lot of hard work into it! While we were there, Aubrey kept wanting to go upstairs and see her room - Russell hasn't done anything upstairs, so her room looked the same except it didn't have any furniture in it. She couldn't understand why we couldn't call it her room anymore.

Another funny from Aubrey - a couple weeks ago we saw a cigarette butt on the ground at the gas station and she asked what it was. I explained it to her and told her that smoking was yucky. She later told me that she did not smoke, to which I was very thankful because I'm not sure how a 3 year old would get cigarettes, but anyway :) Russell had a friend make smoked pork loin for supper on Saturday. When she heard it was smoked, she was worried because smoking was bad and she wasn't sure if we should eat it :)