About Me

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Nebraska, United States
A would-be stay at home mom working full-time as a teacher. I teach at my old Highschool, working side-by-side with my own teachers. I blog to keep the Texan grandparents updated and chronicle our life for future reference. (In other words, I don't have a real baby-book or diary.) Comments make my day. Thanks for stopping by! kimlepper at gmail.com

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Neat Repeatz

I have to brag when I make pennies suffer. We got all our summer clothes (and some toys for Sam) for $110! Considering we do this twice a year, I'd say our clothing budget is at a bare minimum.

Sam was already set with shirts because of her Aunt Dannie. All her dresses from last summer will now be shirts! I'm so excited to put them on her again, as they are SO CUTE!!

Here are a few things we got. Nothing was over $5, and most were only $1 or $2.

neat repeatz
neat repeatz
neat repeatzI even got clothes for myself! I needed casual clothes. I have a ton of fancy stuff from work, and a heap of t-shirts and sweat pants, but almost nothing in between. Here were my two fav finds:

Gap jeans- $6
Shirt- $1
neat repeatzNothing like a new outfit to make one feel skinny and pretty!

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Typical Tuesday

For debt reduction purposes and other small reasons, we recently sold our '03 Saturn Ion and purchased a '95 Honda Accord.

For years I have baffled at people's additions and emotional attachment to cars. Helloooo-- It's a car.

Then we bought my Honda.

Don't get me wrong- I looooved all the bells and whistles of the Ion.

But it has been a suppressed dream of mine to own a Honda.

It's sinful how attached I am to this thing.

We typically name our cars. Jer's gray '01 Saturn SL is Henry. The '03 black Saturn Ion was Betty. I have yet to name the red Honda. I'm pretty sure it's female and starts with an "A"...I'm thinking Agnes or Angie?


I'm a huge Honda and Toyota fan. This is purely based on online research and limited personal experience. My two big reasons are they run forEVER, really hold their value and are cheap to repair.

My question is, what is your preferred brand and why?

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Lucy Stories

While in the car:

Lucy: Oh look! A dog is lost and his name is Reward!

While playing with a wooden snake:

Me: That's really a dead snake made into a toy
Lucy: No, it's made of wood from China.

It's just no fun teasing a 6 year old that can read...

Friday, March 26, 2010

Doctor, Doctor, Give Me the News

Thursday: Woke up at 9:15 and freaked out. Appt with Neurologist was at 9. UG!
9:35 we arrive, barely dressed huffing and puffing.
And then we met the doctor who gets the reward for best bedside manner ever! Seriously, if all doctors were like him, there would never be any law suits, ergo no need for insurance companies ergo the world would be rid of all evil.
Weight: 14.14
Diagnosis: *Deeeeep breath* She has stiff lower extremities and over reactive reflexes (like a ninja) and this could be due to lack of oxygen at birth but we wouldn't know without an MRI and that is not something you want to do with a baby unless you have to because you have to sedate them so we're going to do the physical therapy and wait. (end sentence)

If she doesn't improve, then we do an MRI. He said we could call it cerebral palsy, but that implies it isn't curable. And we don't know that for sure. Cerebral palsy is an "umbrella term"- like saying someone is "depressed". That could mean they are having a bad day, or are suicidal.

When we mentioned I am on zoloft, he said one of the side effects while nursing can be vomiting, so get off the zoloft if I can.

However, I tried a couple of weeks ago and it was a definite no-go. And the doc said the benefits of nursing outweigh the puking once a month. So we're researching our options there as well.

Prescription: "Preschool" aka physical therapy, and see him again in a month. Which gets me all excited. My baby is going to school! She's totally gonna rock and I expect no less than an A.

We're also waiting to see if we can get in earlier to the GI- which would result in a trip to Omaha.

Amidst all this, everyone keeps asking how I'm doing. I'm actually doing great! I'm so relieved it's not life-threatening. I was excited that it was just stiff legs (and not cancer). It was like a huge weight lifted off my shoulders. She isn't being lazy. It isn't my fault for not doing enough tummy time. Even the most remote part of my irrational mommy-guilt brain can't come up with a reason for me to blame myself. This is wonderful news, as far as I'm concerned! I just hope the vomiting mystery is just as simple.

Oh, and did anyone else think of "GI Joe" when I mentioned the GI?

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

What's Up, Doc?

Warning: the following is very scatterbrained and lacks creativity.
Monday- took Samantha to see Pediatrician to get a second opinion about her physical development
Weight: 14.14
diagnosis: Gross Motor Delay
perscription: Physical Therapy (next Monday)

Tuesday- Samantha woke up puking 'til 2pm. Normally this would be a big deal, but this has been happening every 3 weeks or so since she was 3 months. It goes like this: wake up, puke pukepukepukepukedryheavesweatdryheave, sleep, wake up and be back to normal. No fever, no diarrhea- just horrible vomiting that stops as sudden as it starts.
Took her to the doc
Weight: 14.05
perscription: blood work and avoid internet/webmd at all costs

Wednesday- took her to mom's group
weight: 14.08
Doc called at 3:30
diagnosis: ? blood work came back just fine
perscription: appointment to see a pediatric neurologist (tomorrow) and pediatric gastroenterologist (April 30th)

Stay Tuned!
(and prayers please!)

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Typical Tuesday

I overheard this conversation:

Person 1: "My husband is upset because I took out a loan for my son to go to college."

Person 2: "Oh, that's rough."

P1: "I know, right? I mean, it's not my fault he wants to go to a really expensive school. I can't help it that he doesn't want to go to UNL. I mean, what am I suppose to say, 'No'?"

P2: "Right! I mean, he's grown up, you have to let them go and make their own choices."

P1: "I guess this is just the point where you hope you've raised them well enough that when they graduate they'll help pay some of the loan."

Anyone else's jaw on the floor? I just kept my mouth shut.

Right now we have no extra cash to put away for Sam's college. Do I want to help her future education? Yes! But I'm not going to put myself in a shaky financial situation to do so. There are other ways.

At this point, Jer and I have learned and decided the following:

1) We will do our best to have a college fund for our kids

2) If we don't have enough (or any) we will not be co-signing anything (I appreciate that my parent's did that for me, but didn't like the weight of their credit and financial liability being in my hands)

3) Even if our kids have more than enough money to pay for college, they will not know how much they have waiting for them. I love my husband and brother, but if any of our kids are like them, such security will only produce apathy in their studies.

What are your plans for your kid's college? If they already left, what advice would you give?

Monday, March 22, 2010

Tongue Tied

Occasionally Samantha's tongue outgrows her mouth. Either that or the change of seasons make the air taste good.
Or she's just weird.

Anyway, it's cute.

And is not only worthy of pictures

but a blog post as well.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Take me out to the b-ball game...

My uncle coached his team through TWO consecutive undefeated seasons!
Go Bluejays!

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Sneaky Saturdays

I know I've kept you all in suspense for two weeks for the next secret- but here it is!!

Today's post is number five in the seven week series of Seven Sneaky Secrets Vitamin companies hope you never find out:

Secret Number 5 Is an Apple Really an Apple?

Are all apples nutritionally identical? Of course not! The nutritional makeup of each apple is determined by the conditions it was grown under – fertilizer, climate, sunshine, rain, etc.

It’s the same with herbs and their extracts. Many companies cite studies of herbal extracts along with the effective dosages. They then include the exact same dosage in their formula as the report. However, they often use a less expensive, less active form of the extract. For example, the root may be the active form of one herb, but the less active and less expensive leaf is used instead.

Again, you can trust Shaklee to use the proper extract of all herbal formulas. They also do testing on each batch to ensure that the extract strength is correct; too much or too little will affect the results you get. Shaklee is also one of the only companies that insists that the raw herbal ingredient is free of pesticides, herbicides, fungicides and anything else that would be harmful for humans to ingest.

With Shaklee products, you can actually FEEL the difference in your energy level, your resistance to colds and flu, and in long term health.

Friday, March 19, 2010

10 months

Samantha has broken a record! She's the first 10-month-old to refuse sitting up!

Let me tell you, constantly having to find her a place to LAY DOWN is getting o.l.d.

Hold my fingers while she stands?- nope!
Hold onto something while standing? - what's the point in that?
"Step" while standing?- say what?

Just to ease my mother, we are gong to a pediatrician in 2 weeks, just to make sure she is developing all the muscles she needs to be.

Is it bad that I will be embarrassed if she still won't sit up on her birthday?

My only thought is that she's so occupied developing mentally that she just can't be bothered with the physical stuff. She does 11 signs now (she's added light and hungry) and is obsessed with textures and holes.

I was watching how the other kids play with her blocks at play group. They all do their best to open their mouths as wiiiiiiiiiide as possible, trying to eat the block. Sam is not one to eat things. She wants one in each hand so she can bang them together and then scratches and picks at them with her index finger while she's grasping it. Seriously, she plays with her blocks all day long.

So, I dunno.

But what she DOES do:

gives kisses
pulls out my hair while nursing
says "ma mom" and "deh deh dehdehdedhdeh!"
unfolds clothes
gives the funniest scrunchy nosed grin

Here's the 10 month video. Which she herself took. And is great evidence as to why I have not been able to get her doing signs on camera yet.

If you get motion sick easily, you might want to skip the video this month.

Thursday, March 18, 2010


Last Friday was my birthday- yippee, I'm now closer to 30 than 20.


Anyway, as a way to break in the new year of birth I came down with mastitis. Lots of fun, let me tell you! I had a 102 temp with Tylenol and Ibuprofen. AND it was on the side that Sam doesn't like to nurse from. AND I have the darndest time pumping from that side too. It was lovely.

My family had planned a birthday celebration for me and my mom asked if we should cancel. In proper childhood form, I broke down into tears, begging that it not be.

Time at my parent's place = break time for me. Sam and Jer are entertained and fed. So I hobbled to the car and curled up onto the "nest" the fam had made for me on the couch and they celebrated for me while I writhed in pain, waiting for the fever to break.

Lucy opened my gifts for me. I still am in awe that I get gifts! I got this from Jeremy and my brother (which I use all the time and love it!), a visit to the chiropractor from the Hilgers and a sweater from the Leppers.

Oh, and we had the awesomest pork roast with potato dumplings....mmmmm!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Whistle While You Work

Lucy and I went to Home Depot's kid's workshop.
It's free; therefore we went.
They get wood, nails, hammer and an apron for safety.

They were suppose to have made a rain gauge, but they ran out, so Lucy got to pick some from previous months. She chose the easel. (She and my dad paint together a lot)

For anyone who knows Lucy, she is very much no-nonsense when it comes to projects. She gets things done asap. So the trip only lasted around 15 minutes (included parking). But she had a blast! She was giddy when we walked out and can't wait for "Next Year!"

Next Month- a butterfly house!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Typical Tuesday

Without going into an intense medical history, I'm going to just go right out and say it-- I'm on antidepressants and have been since I was 16. I hate it. Not only does it make my insurance rates higher, but it's a pride thing. I hate being dependent on a medication to be able to function. Plus maintenance is justannoying. I have to physically see a doctor to continue my medication every 6 months (even if there is no change in dosage). I know the reasons, I'm just saying it's a pain.


I decided to see if I could go off the meds a few weeks ago (with a doc's help, of course). He put me on a looooong and slow tapper. After the first tapper I was feeling good. I was so excited- I might possibly be med free for the first time in 10 years!! Then, last week, right before the mastitis hit, I took the next step down. This past weekend I had no gumption to do anything. I just wanted to lay in bed all day. I figured I was still getting over being sick. I was still able to function, but felt like I was in a fog.

Then came today. It took me 'til 2pm to get myself bathed and fed. I didn't want to do anything. I found myself wanting to cry for no reason, then burst out laughing when I saw this, then immediately wanted to cry. Again. UG.

The fog, the tiredness, the inability to make myself do the smallest things (the thought of praying made me exhausted) only meant one thing- there was no more tapering for me.

So I'm sucking up my pride and continuing on the meds.

My QUESTION for you:
...Back when I started on the meds there seemed to be a stigma on those who took medication for mental issues. "Pull yourself out of it!" Was the response from many (no one from my family- thank goodness!).

Today it seems everyone is on something. It's no big deal.

Now, are people over medicated these days?
In my opinion, yes.

But that's not what I want to talk about.

Is it just my perception that has changed or are people much more open and accepting about being diagnosed with depression nowadays?

Sunday, March 14, 2010

I Saw the Sign

I know I've been neglecting the blog the past few days- mastitis kind of took my...oomph.

Anyway, I have lots to blog about, but for now I record a baby book story.

As of this morning Samantha could do 7 signs.
All Done
So Big

These signs alone have made the whining, squealing, fits and screaming drop to almost nothing. There have been several moments recently where I feel "off" because of the quiet that has coated the apartment. It. Is. Lovely.

And that's not all! Tonight she added two more:

Cheerio- right now it's just an open hand stretched out in the air- but considering she signed it several times when she wanted another, I'm going to count it!

The final one came out of the blue and I got so excited that the bedtime story we were reading was no longer a soothing activity.

We have many books, but only read four of them. Samantha will have nothing to do with cartoons (she only likes books with real pictures in them) and if there are more than 2 words on the page, she's like Max and does everything she can to turn to the next, whether we are done reading or not.

I think the reason she is so intent on reading these four books over and over is because they are her dictionary-- her key to communication. This child has been dying to communicate with us. When I pick them up to read them to her she makes this funny giggly sound and squirms with excitement. And that's before I even open the first page!

A few weeks ago something clicked and suddenly she's picking up signs like a magnet on paperclips. She ate a banana for dinner and was very interested in the banana page tonight, watching very patiently as I showed her how to move her hands to make the sign. Considering I'm a language freak, it is absolutely exhilarating watching her language development.

Ok, I digress- the final sign!
After reading one of the four for the 100th time, I turned to the page with "hat".


(Hm...typing that makes it feel less anticlimactic...)

Just to make sure, I went back to the page three more times and she did it instantly each time! I was so proud I'm sure the elderly lady living next door heard me squeal.

I'll do my best to get them all on video for the doubting Thomas' out there. However, this child just senses that I'm going to touch the camera and refuses to do anything but smile and reach for the camera.

Thursday, March 11, 2010


That's not a mirror, that's my twinkie!
Notice the socks?

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Sweet Sickness

We learned the hard way that Sam is still severely intolerant of dairy last week.


I didn't drink the milk on purpose.
It was served to me mixed.
I thought with OJ.
(No, I'm not stupid,
the stuff was banana flavored and I wasn't paying attention).

On the bright side, she's discovered she likes cuddling.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Typical Tuesday

My question today revolves around CIO. For those of you who know what this stands for, chances are you, you have your own opinion about it.

For those of you who don't, allow me to educate you so you too may join in on the fun!

CIO=Cry it out

I use to think that if a baby is crying, it's because they need something. If you let them cry, you are not giving them what they need.

I use to think a fussy baby could be "cured" by swaddling, loud noises, swinging, eliminating certain foods, baby wearing- so many options, in fact, that CIO shouldn't even be considered, right?

I use to think
(judge) other parents who let their baby cry or couldn't get their baby to settle down were obviously not doing it right (no clue what "it" was, just sure they were doing it wrong)

See the subtitle to my blog up at the top there?

That is why I was given Samantha.

Because God thinks He's so darn funny.

What happens when you have a Samantha, who just
doesn't stop?
One that just screams unless she has the boob.
One who, despite being very tired and in a very comfortable car seat on a long, smooth road trip will scream
the entire trip instead of sleeping.
One who wakes up 2-3 times a night screaming bloody murder for 30 seconds, and then goes back to sleep.
One who screams and cries at her toys because...actually, we don't know why. She just looks at it, furious with tears streaming down her face-and we have to take the toy away. And these are not frustrating toys. This is like a marker or a block.

I will admit that up to a certain age (4 months-ish) where if a baby cries, they truly do need something, even if it is simply to be held.
But after 4 months....well, sometimes they just need to blow off some steam.

In our case, our little steam engine needs to go constantly.

So we let her cry. When we have someone come over to babysit while she's sleeping, we tell them
not to go in if she cries. They kind of look at us funny and I find myself explaining how much I hate it and never thought I'd have to do it, but that we just let her cry.

So, if I hate it so much, why do we let her?

Because then she sleeps 12 hrs.
And, recently, naps for
90 minutes.

I have friends whose babies are Samantha's age and the parents
refuse to do CIO.
Or try it for 20 minutes and give up.
And they are exhausted.

Don't get me wrong- Samantha is still exhausting! But a good night's sleep makes a world of a difference for both her and me.

My question to you, is, have you ever/will you ever/do you ever plan on using CIO?

For anyone who has a child like Samantha, how long 'til she will just
go to sleep without fighting it? Or is this a life-time "funny" God has given me?

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Friday, March 5, 2010

Sippy Obsession and Self Affirmation

To the untrained eye- one may think such a pose is a contemplative one.

But is actually Sam's version of the sign "drink" (a little easier to see the adaptation than Lucy's version of giving herself a wet-willie)

This is her favorite sign. And really her only. I think she goes through 16 oz of water a day.

Which results in 5-7 diapers a day.

We do cloth, remember?

Anyway, this pretty much sums up my days:

Request for a drink

Self affirmation



Repeat 'til sippy is empty

Drop sippy and make loud noise at mom who is no longer paying attention

More self affirmation

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Drinking Problem

As proud as I am, I have to admit, drink has become synonymous with "I want that."

What can I say? It's a work in progress.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010


She's 9.5 months old and still prefers laying down to sitting.

Unless, that is, you place her in a box.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Typical Tuesday

Jer and I have decided to get really gazelle intense.

Long story short, we're seriously considering moving in with my parents for while (max 2 years) to help us knock out most, if not all, of our debt.

My mom said everyone has to write down any concerns, and we will all bring them together later and discuss.

The only problem/issue/concern that I have is that of space. We'd take over the small bedroom downstairs. All three (future four?) of us.

Anything else anyone can think of?

Ram Sam Sam

Lilypie Kids Birthday tickers

Lil Sister

Lilypie Third Birthday tickers


Lilypie First Birthday tickers