Thursday, December 17, 2009

Blizzard ‘09

Last week, we got to experience the Blizzard of ‘09 right here in Iowa. We got more than a foot of snow on the ground, then the winds came. Up to 50-60 mph. Whew!

When I opened the back door to let the dogs outside… this is what we found.


Then I took a peek at the swingset…


And then of course, there was the front yard and the cars…


We were stuck in the house for a couple of days… but then my hubby (who is awesome) braved the outdoors to clear the driveway. And he did an awesome job!


The wind was still blowing when the snow finally eased up, but we just couldn’t resist taking Zack outside to experience some of the big drifts in the backyard. At first, he wasn’t sure about how deep it was.


But it didn’t take long for him to start having fun! (and then, of course, there were tears when I said we had to go inside)


We’re still pretty covered in snow around here…but at least we can get around again. (Although, I’m beginning to think the City of Des Moines has forgotten our neighborhood…Bring a plow down our streets for goodness sake!!)

A Little Late…But Still Thankful

So, I have yet to get a post up about our Thanksgiving trip to Oklahoma…but I’m finally getting to it now!

We left Des Moines at 4am the day before Thanksgiving. We left this early on our last trip to Oklahoma and it worked out really well because we arrive around 2pm and we get more time with my family. :)

Mom and Jake outdid themselves with the food, as usual. It was all delicious!




It was Austin’s first Thanksgiving, so we let him try a drumstick (basically just for photo opportunities…) He LOVED it! In fact, he cried when I finally took it away.


Zack, on the other hand, had this reaction when I GAVE him a drumstick. Suffice to say, our boys are different in many ways. ;)


Thanksgiving night, we celebrated Christmas with my family. The boys had  a lot of fun and got lots of fun new things.

I was blessed with this awesome gift… Footie pajamas from my mom.


Complete with MONKEY FEET! (I laughed…A LOT)


Besides all the holiday festivities, we of course had to get outside with the boys. The weather was beautiful! Zack spent most his time outdoors with Grandpa. One of the first orders of business…riding the tractor, of course!


And Austin had to get out to see Whisper and Bunny, of course. Bunny just wanted to know if they were hiding any treats…


And Whisper wasn’t about to be outdone.


We had a great time in Oklahoma, and loved getting to spend time with my parents and my brother, Jake. And we’re looking forward to seeing Mom and Dad again this week as they come up to see Zack in his Christmas program!

For now, goodbye from Reindeer Austin…


And Zack… uh, I mean, Luigi. ;)


Wednesday, December 16, 2009

A Mommy Project

I know, I'm incredibly behind in my posts. Not sure anyone really notices that, but I have several posts rattling around in my head that I want to get typed up... just haven't had the time. Today, just a short one... to show you all a little video I put together for Austin's first birthday. There are a couple of glitches (as I'm trying to figure out software I hadn't used before) and I didn't take as much time on it as I would have liked... but I'm pretty satisfied with it. Of course, I could watch home movies of my kids for hours... ;) So, please try to forget I'm supposed to be trained in video shooting & editing! Just view from a mommy's point of view...

Austin's First Year from Kristy Heilman on Vimeo.

Friday, December 4, 2009

The First Year

It’s official. My baby is a year old.

At 3:16pm today, Austin moved on from the “___-months old” category to one YEAR old. Sure, it seems insignificant, but not to a mom.


Our littlest man entered the world at 8lbs 10z and 20 inches. Today, he tips the scales at nearly 23lbs.


That sizable weight gain is due in part to his incredible love for food. I kid you not – Austin will eat just about anything. He has RARELY refused anything. He’ll at LEAST try it – and chances are he’ll probably like it. Zack, on the other hand, is a picky eater. Not so with his little brother. Austin not only eats just about anything – he ENJOYS it, too. Practically the entire time he’s eating he’s making noise. Something like, “Mmmm, Num Num Num” and such.


Our Austin also came into this world with some slightly misaligned feet. Today, you would never be able to tell.

(Below: Austin tries to find weak spots in Zack’s fortress)


Austin began his treatment for clubfoot when he was about 2 weeks old. He’s received EXCELLENT care from Dr. Dietz at the Ponseti clinic in Iowa City. What an amazing gift from God. Not only was the world expert on clubfoot in the U.S. – he was in Iowa… just an hour and a half drive from our door. We have known beyond a shadow of a doubt that God led us to Iowa. He has proven it over and over again. This was just further confirmation.


Now after spending weeks in casts and months in a brace – Austin is mobile. He’s been trying to walk and showing interest, but usually goes for crawling (because it’s just easier). Today, he turned a corner… He walked across the living room BY HIMSELF without any coaxing. He was SO EXCITED when he did it! It was precious! Then, of course, he wanted to keep going! I have a feeling he’s going to be walking and RUNNING all over the place in no time!

He’s growing and changing so quickly – and I’m so glad I’m here to see it all happen.

Here are a few of Austin’s other favorite things/new discoveries:

  • Austin’s first word was probably ‘Dada.’ He says it ALL the time now. He has also started saying, “This!” and pointing to things. It’s SO cute (of course, I’m biased). He’s also starting to say ‘Mama’ (which makes me giddy, of course)
  • Austin has figured out that many animals growl or roar. He’s also figured out that he can make such a sound. So now, most animal toys he plays with growl or roar… even if it’s an elephant.
  • Austin also loves cars and trucks. So, the same “roaring” sound he uses for animals is also used in connection with cars and trucks. He loves to make an “engine” noise and push cars and trucks around.
  • Austin LOVES Blue’s Clues. We discovered this kind of by accident. Now, he adores it and gets SO excited when he hears the music at the beginning of the show. He also says, “Cues! Cues!” (aka: “Blues Clues!”) when watching it. Of course, this show is in reruns now, so finding Blue’s Clues toys, etc is difficult…
  • Last, but definitely not least, Austin loves his brother. I’m pretty sure he’d follow Zack to the ends of the earth – even if he had to crawl the whole way. In Austin’s eyes, Zack is pretty much the coolest guy on the planet, and also hysterically funny. Zack, seems to only be mildly aware that he’s revered in such a way. He adores Austin, but doesn’t yet realize the power he COULD have over him (I know, he’ll discover that eventually).

And so ends my birthday post for Austin. My sweet, sweet little boy. I should clarify: My sweet little boy is also incredibly onery…but is so darn adorable while being onery it’s distracting. ;P


Austin, I love you. We are so blessed that God has entrusted you to us. Our hearts have grown so much since you joined us a year ago. I’m so excited to see the man you’ll grow to be – but I’m not in a hurry to get there. You and your brother are treasures to your daddy and I.

Happy birthday, little bubba. :)

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Blame it on the hormones...

...or just the fact that I'm a mommy. (which also presumes mucho hormones) Either way, I've been feeling pretty emotional today. Tomorrow, my baby turns 1.

One year ago tonight we were doing last minute preps before heading in to the hospital for me to be induced. (In the pic, Zack is giving Austin & I a hug before we leave)

It's so crazy to think how quickly this year has passed. To quote my friend (and marriage expert) Barb Rosberg, "These are the longest days and the shortest years." How VERY true. There have been days in the last year that I thought I would never survive... but now looking back it seems to have all passed in a blur.

I've been looking at Austin this week and saying, "He's not a baby anymore." But Josh is quick to say, "Yes he is!" He says I have another 6 months to a year before he's REALLY not a baby. Sure, sure - but the fact that I have to say "YEAR" in his age instead of "MONTHS" just brings home that he's growing up quickly.

So this is pretty much just a quick post to vent some of these pent up emotions (or not-so-pent-up if you ask my husband). More posts to come later.... including a post about our Thanksgiving in Oklahoma and a birthday post for Austin.

Now, I need to go catch some of these quickly passing minutes with my boys.