Wednesday, April 30, 2008


Amaya has now learned what it's like to experience loneliness. Usually, I'm able to leave her on the floor playing with her toys for a few minutes to throw laundry in, make the bed, get dinner going, etc. For some reason, yesterday she didn't want me out of sight. As soon as I'd leave the room, she start whining which soon progressed to all out screaming! When I'd rush into the living room to see what all the fuss was about, she'd give me this great big smile. And it's one of those smiles that makes a person feel guilty for even thinking about leaving her alone. Grr... So today, I was going to get up at 6am and get a jump start on my day while she was still sleeping. (Steve and I reluctantly crawled out of bed around 6:40am.) I've gotten most of the important things done already, so I can give her my full undivided attention should she need it later today. She's napping now, so it's a mad rush to get more stuff done. I wish she would be able to tell me if her nap would be a 15 minute one or an hour. Hopefully, this will be an hour nap!


Tuesday, April 29, 2008


The sun has FINALLY decided to appear after several days of rain, clouds, and COLD. It's still only 35 degrees out today, but hopefully by this afternoon it will be warm enough to take Amaya for a stroller ride.

I don't go back to work until Saturday afternoon, but we've been busy trying to get ready for my mom's garage sale. Yesterday, I unloaded our stuff, and I realized that I'm missing a box. Here I thought I was doing really well and only had four boxes of rummage, and then I remembered Steve putting a box up high on the shelves because it didn't fit anywhere else in the garage. We'll post pictures of the garage sale this weekend - I hope the weather is warm enough, otherwise we'll have to bundle Amaya in a snowsuit!


Sunday, April 27, 2008

Stay-At-Home Dad?

I took care of Amaya today while Jan was at work. We had a good morning, and a not so good afternoon. After today, I have a deeper understanding of and respect for the work that stay-at-home moms do. As much as I love my daughter, I don't think I would enjoy staying home (alone) with her all day, every day. I don't believe I have the patience nor the tolerance for the extended bouts of VERY LOUD crying... not to mention the crying that Amaya does! Ha, ha. :o)

I'm glad that Jan wants to be a stay-at-home mom. I hope that soon, we can make it a reality.


Friday, April 25, 2008

Busy Month Ahead

This is the last weekend that Steve and I can really relax before life becomes crazy this month. It kicks off with my mom's semi-annual garage sale on the 1st of May. My Mom has had a garage sale with several friends for as long as I can remember. Then Steve graduates, May 3rd. The following weekend on Saturday night, we're having Amaya dedicated at our church. We're having everyone (11 adults, 3 kids, and 2 babies) over to our house on Mother's Day for lunch. Our niece Emily, is celebrating a birthday and two of our nephews are being dedicated this month. AND, Amaya gets to meet her Aunt Debbie, Uncle Paul, and Cousins Emily and Brian at the end of May when they visit all the way from Colorado! Whew! I hope I didn't forget anything!


Steve did well on the Miller Analogies Test - his preliminary score was above average, but thought it was harder than expected.

Here are the answers from the practice test:
1. Drip:Gush

2. Walk:Legs

3. Enfranchise:Slavery

4. Union Jack:Vexillology

5. Topaz:Yellow

6. Lumen:Brightness

7. Maceration:Liquid

8. Clumsy:Botch

9. Fugitive:Flee

10. Chronological:Time

11. Soot:Grimy

12. Morbid:Unfavorable

13. Sullen:Brood

14. Author:Literate

15. Massive:Bulk

16. Entice:Repel

17. Humdrum:Bore

18. Hospitable:Courtesy

19. Reinforce:Stronger

20. Braggart:Modesty

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Miller Analogies Test

Steve is taking the Miller Analogies Test tomorrow in the cities as a requirement for his application to graduate school. Here's a practice test! See how you do! I got 11/20 right (55%)! It's a good thing I'm not the one going to grad school! I'll post answers in the next day or two.

1. Drip:Gush

2. Walk:Legs

3. Enfrancise:Slavery

4. Union Jack:Vexillology
Friend:Home Economics

5. Topaz:Yellow

6. Lumen:Brightness

7. Maceration:Liquid

8. Clumsy:Botch

9. Fugitive:Flee

10. Chronological:Time

11. Soot:Grimy

12. Morbid:Unfavorable

13. Sullen:Brood

14. Author:Literate

15. Massive:Bulk

16. Entice:Repel

17. Humdrum:Bore

18. Hospitable:Courtesy

19. Reinforce:Stronger

20. Braggart:Modesty


Now that we're no longer sleep deprived, you would think that we'd be able to communicate better! Not so...

Last night, Steve's mom, Ruth Ann, gave us a new Reader's Digest to read. So, when we went to bed Steve says to me, "We got a new Parent's magazine today, do you know where the TV Guide is?" TRANSLATION, "Where's the new Reader's Digest?"

Then, Steve asks me, "So when Amaya is one, are you going to stop breastfeeding?" I reply, "Yeah, 2:15." What I THOUGHT I heard Steve say was, "What time are you setting your alarm clock to get up to pump?"

Oye... Usually we're pretty good mind readers, but last night we were WAAAY off!

Tuesday, April 22, 2008


My first few days back to work have been uneventful. Amaya seems to be adjusting fine going over to the grandma's houses and has been sleeping WONDERFUL at night the past three nights! I think they are wearing her out!! Steve is getting the hang of getting Amaya ready in the morning. I'm still having a difficult time leaving her in the morning, but usually by the time I'm at work, I've been able to pull myself together.

What I'm struggling with is trying to find a balance and trying to get everything done that needs to be done. While on maternity leave, I spent quite a bit of time reading while I was nursing Amaya (especially during those late night, early morning hours - I don't miss those anymore!) Anyway, I've been reading a lot of Elizabeth George's books - "Beautiful in God's Eyes", "A Woman after God's Own Heart," and more recently "Life Management for Busy Women." What I like about her writing is that she has a very traditional view of women's roles (very similar to my own). And most everything she talks about is backed by Scripture. Anyway, in her book, "A Woman After God's Own Heart," she talks specifically about maintaining priorities and looking to God to define your priorities. Here's a list of them and in order:

1. Loving God and following after Him with a whole heart.
2. Loving, helping, and serving my husband
3. Loving, teaching, and discipling my children.
4. Loving and caring for a home in order to provide a quality life for my family.
5. Developing myself so that I have something to give to others.
6. Loving and serving God's people.
7. Everything else (family, friends, work, hobbies, etc.)

So... where does blogging fit in my priorities?!?

Anyway, I've really been convicted these past few months about where my priorities are. And especially after having a baby who is completely dependent on Steve and me for everything, our priorities have to be shifted somehow. While I agree with most of Elizabeth George's list of priorities, there are some that I disagree with and it may vary day to day. For example, if my mom calls and wants to go out to lunch (Priority #7), am I really going to say, "No, I can't. I haven't cleaned the bathroom yet(Priority #4)? Most likely not. I'm going to spend the time with my mom because that's a higher priority to me. But, the list provides a great way to keep things in check and serves as a guide. Another example (and a common situation) - Steve's home from work and I didn't get a chance to get all my housework done. He wants to watch a movie with me, I want the laundry to get folded. What's my priority? Before reading the book, I would have folded the laundry then watch a movie with Steve (if we had time). But how does that make Steve feel? Now, I've learned to watch the movie with Steve (Priority #2), then fold the laundry TOGETHER (Priority #4 AND Priority #2). And if we didn't have time to fold the laundry, at least Steve and I have spent time together and I've made him more important than my own agenda.

It's been a challenge to try to squeeze in as many things as possible every day - no wonder people look forward to retirement! I'm still learning to let go and say no and figure out "What does God want me to do day?" "What would be pleasing to God?" "What can I do today to show God that I love Him and that He is my #1 priority?" "What can I do today to love, help, and serve Steve to show him that He is my #2 priority? "What can I do today to love and teach Amaya to show her that she is my #3 priority?" "What's important to me?" "What's important to God?" "Are they the same things?" "Should they be the same things?" At the end of the day, can I honestly say that I put God before my husband? At the end of the day, can I honestly say that I put Steve before Amaya? "What kind of treasures am I storing in heaven?" Something to think about.... THIS IS THE DAY THAT THE LORD HAS MADE! REJOICE AND BE GLAD IN IT!


Saturday, April 19, 2008

Back to Work

The day begins with my alarm clock going off at 4:45am. Surprisingly, I'm able to get out of bed without hitting the snooze button (especially after getting about 4 1/2 hours of sleep). Too much on my mind. It was a little more difficult getting out the door. Uniform - check, Badge - check, Lunch - check, Breast pump - check, Bottles - check, Kleenex -check. I think I remembered everything!

My friend, Connie, is working with me today and made chocolate chip cookies. She makes the most wonderful cookies - underbaked just right! She's quite the talker, so she's been most helpful keeping my mind off Amaya. I've only cried twice and I've resisted calling home to see if everything is going okay. However, Steve has already called to see how I was doing.

My sister, Carol, gave a wonderful devotional at one of my baby showers and talked about cherishing your child's "lasts." The last time you rock them to sleep, the last time they fit into their newborn clothes, the last time they crawl, etc... True, I'm going to miss all of her "lasts," especially as she's changing so much - but I'm more afraid of missing her "firsts." The first time she giggles, the first time she crawls, the first time she takes a step, etc. Okay, I'm not going to think about that...

I'm working in our ultraviolet light room today. It's going to be a steady day today and not too crazy. I'm trying to remember passwords, where to chart, etc. For now, it's coming back to me pretty quickly, but I'm a little rusty. My first patient comes in another half an hour or so and then I'll be busy for the rest of the day.

Thank you to everyone who has encouraged me! I've definitely felt the prayers this morning!


Thursday, April 17, 2008

Dry Run

So, I've decided to take the advice of a dear friend who we met through our prenatal class and do a "dry run" in preparation for returning to work on Saturday. I figure that since I'm scheduled for 7am, I need to get up at 4:45am in order to get ready, pump, lay out Amaya's clothes, get her diaper bag ready, etc. The 6am shifts will be even more brutal because I have to take the shuttle which means leaving the house by 5:10am! Ugh! We'll see how things go!

Anniversary Dinner...

Jan cooked all of Steve's favorite foods -- and Steve ate pretty much everything in sight!

More new pictures!

Here is a picture of Amaya just before she rolled over!

New Pictures!

Here are a couple new pictures of Amaya at 12 weeks old (April 13th).

Rolling Over!!!

Yesterday, Amaya rolled over!!! She's been really close for a week or so, but finally she did it! Amaya was on her stomach and her little legs were kicking and she worked up enough momentum to roll over! I was pretty excited and I think I scared her with my screaming, so she may never do it again! Unfortunately, Steve missed it by about 3 minutes - he had just got home and was walking up the driveway when she did it. Maybe I can catch her doing it today on video... we'll see...

- Jan

Wednesday, April 16, 2008


Today is our third wedding anniversary! It's absolutely amazing how time flies by! Steve has to work tonight at the Family Access Center, so tomorrow night I'm going to make his favorite dinner - Fresh Mozarella and Tomato Salad, Grilled Chicken and Parmesan Pasta, Ranch Grilled Bread, and Caramel Brownies (I'm getting hungry already!)

My parents watched Amaya a week or so ago so that we could celebrate and Steve and I went to a restaurant called 300 First. For those of you familiar with Rochester, it used to be called the Broadstreet, but they've changed the name and menu items. The food wasn't quite as good as the Broadstreet, but we still enjoyed a night out.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Typical day for Amaya

A few people have been wondering if I have Amaya on some type of schedule. I tried gettting her on a schedule, but it was pretty pointless and more frustrating to force her to sleep and eat when I wanted her to. As Steve and I followed her cues, she developed her own routine and it works so much better!

6:45-7:00am - Wake up (crying of course!), get changed
7:00am-7:30am - Eat (her favorite part of the day!)
7:30am-9:00am - Play/Tummy Time
9:00am-9:10am - Fuss and whine until I finally figure out that she's tired.
9:10am-11:15am - SLEEP! (This is when I get my shower in, household chores, devotions, etc)
11:15am-11:45am - Eat
11:45am-12:00pm - Fuss because I'm making lunch for Steve and not paying her any attention
12:00pm-12:30pm - PLAY WITH DADDY while he's trying to eat lunch
12:30pm-1:00pm - Play
1:00pm-3:00pm - SLEEP
3:00pm-3:30pm - Eat
3:30pm-4:30pm - Go for a stroller ride (weather permitting) or Play
4:30pm-5:00pm - Play with daddy while I'm making supper
5:00pm-5:30pm - Sit with daddy while we're eating supper
5:30pm-6:30pm - Go for a ride in the car seat while we're running errands (groceries, Home Depot, Target, Library, etc)
6:30-7:00pm - Eat
7:00pm-8:00pm - SLEEP
8:00pm-9:00pm - Fuss (unless of course daddy is walking me around the house)
9:00pm-10:00pm - Eat, Bath (every other day), and Fuss
10:00pm-10:30pm - Fight sleep
10:30pm - 3:00am - ZZZZZZ
3:00am -3:40am - Get rudely awakened to be changed and EAT!
3:40am - 6:45am - ZZZZZZZ

And then the day begins all over again with different variations! It's been nice to be able to predict when she needs to go down for a nap and when she needs to eat. The difficult part is when we deviate from the schedule on days where I have Bible Study, or we're going to her grandparents, etc. She likes to know what to expect and it's a little harder for her to adjust to different environments. And of course, when I go back to work, things will really get interesting!

Monday, April 14, 2008

Going back to work...

My maternity leave is rapidly coming to an end. Because I'm going back part time (2 shifts one week, 3 shifts the following week), I was able to squeeze out another week of maternity leave. I return back to work on Saturday, April 19th. As you can imagine I have mixed feelings about going back. On the one hand, it may be a nice break to get out, but on the other hand, I'm going to miss Amaya TREMENDOUSLY! We've gotten ourselves into a routine and I'm loving every minute with her (even when she's screaming bloody murder for no apparent reason). Last night, my dad made the comment that motherhood was tough work. I agree 100%!! It's the hardest job I've ever done, while at the same time it's the most rewarding and fulfilling. Her smiles are worth more than anything in the world!

Grandma Horning is planning on watching her every other Saturday while we're at work, and Grandma Gustafson will be watching her the remaining days. We're very fortunate that they are both willing AND wanting to take care of her! From what my co-workers have told me, the average cost of daycare is 30 dollars a day - sometimes more with an infant! It doesn't seem like it's very expensive, especially since I'm going back part-time, but it could really add up. Plus, there is no one else (aside from her parents of course) who will love and take care of her more than her grandmas.

I will keep you posted on how things go, but in the meantime, you can be praying for an easy transition for me and for God to calm my anxieties.


Saturday, April 12, 2008

Sleep, sleep, wonderful SLEEP!

Amaya is once again sleeping through the night (or at least she might if we didn't wake her up to eat at about 3 a.m every night).

We are keeping our fingers crossed that it continues!

Online Education

I just finished a short "Introduction to Online Education" course at Crossroads College, where I'm completing my undergraduate degree. Taking classes online is a pretty cool idea - it's nice to be able to do the work at my convenience. What's missing is the face-to-face interaction in class, but there is some interaction via email, instant messaging and the like.

Two more miscellaneous online classes to complete, one non-online class, and a couple other random tasks and I'm done being an undergraduate! Bring on graduate school! :o)

- Steve

Friday, April 11, 2008

Great Grandma and Amaya

Great Grandma and Grandpa's

We really look forward to Friday nights, obviously because it's the start of the weekend, but also because we go over to Steve's Grandparents house for dinner. I think the tradition started when Steve's mom Ruth Ann was in her twenties (but she'll have to correct me on that). Ever since meeting Steve, we've been going over there most every Friday night along with Steve's parents. We have dinner, read devotions, and then play a card game called "Black-Out." It has also been referred to as "Up and Down the River." Our Friday nights have become more exciting now that Amaya is here. Early on, her Great Grandpa would comment on how peaceful she was, but now she's expressing herself with a lot more smiles and a lot more cries! Amaya is quite taken with her Great Grandma and enjoys when she holds her. We're hoping one day that Amaya will soon learn to "over-trump" her Great Grandma at Black-Out and learn to beat her Great Grandpa at chess!

Amaya is so fortunate and blessed to have both sets of grandparents AND great grandparents here in town. My mom's parents died when she was a teenager and my dad's parents passed away several years ago, so I have been blessed as well to have grandparents again!

- Jan

Thursday, April 10, 2008

New Pictures of Amaya!!!

Grandma Lois, Mother Eunice

I've been attending a Women's Bible Study called Cafe Agape at our church and we've been studying the books of 1 & 2 Timothy and Titus. Today we had a discussion about Timothy's character, upbringing, and family. We were looking at these verses today:

"You, however, continue in the things you have learned and become convinced of, knowing from whom you have learned them,and that from childhood you have known the sacred writings which are able to give you the wisdom that leads to salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus." 2 Timothy 3:14-15 (NASB)

Earlier in 2 Timothy we learned that Timothy's grandmother Lois and mother Eunice were of deep faith.

"For I am mindful of the sincere faith within you, which first dwelt in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice, and I am sure that it is in you as well." 2 Timothy 1:5 (NASB).

What struck us all was that Timothy was taught the gospel and teachings of Jesus during his childhood and look what he was called to do later in life! Now that I'm a parent, these verses mean even more to me now that Steve and I are responsible for teaching Amaya about faith in God and His gift of salvation. It may begin with teaching her songs like "The B-I-B-L-E" and "Jesus Loves Me" or taking her to Awanas or church camp, but what an impact we have as parents!

What it also makes me thankful for is growing up in a Christian home and to have wonderful parents who brought me to church and taught me about God. And now when I sing, "This Little Light of Mine" to Amaya I'm reminded of the faith of my parents and grandparents and the generations to come.

"Train up a child in the way he should go,even when he is old he will not depart from it." Proverbs 22:6 (NASB)

- Jan

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Sleeping through the night!?!

In one of my (Steve) earlier posts, I mentioned that Amaya was sleeping through the night. Well... I think she knows that I wrote that because now she is back to getting up 2 times a night. Jan and I think that she is going through a growth spurt, so she needs to eat more frequently. According to the baby books, babies seem to have growth spurts at 3, 6 and 9 months old.

Hopefully we will see a return to her regular sleeping-through-the-night pattern soon. Mommy and Daddy need some more sleep!

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Coming soon...

I'll be posting more pictures (and new videos) of Amaya soon. She has already changed quite a bit from the first two pictures posted to this blog!

Today's Forecast!

I guess winter isn't over yet!

From the NOAA website:

"This Afternoon: Rain likely, mainly after 4pm. Cloudy, with a high near 43. Northeast wind between 8 and 10 mph. Chance of precipitation is 70%.

Tonight: Rain and snow likely before 1am, then a chance of snow between 1am and 4am. Cloudy, with a low around 30. North wind between 9 and 11 mph. Chance of precipitation is 60%. New snow accumulation of less than one inch possible."

Please Pray For...

...our friends, John and Sarah Carlson, and their son, Malachi. He has been having difficulty with pulmonary hypertension. Click the link to John and Sarah's blog on the right-hand side of this page for more information.

Steve's Update

In December of 2007, I began a part-time job at Family Service of Rochester, that also fulfills an internship requirement for my undergraduate schooling. I enjoy this job very much, as it is more closely related to my chosen future profession, counseling.

I will be finishing my undergraduate degree in July of 2008, and will be participating in Commencement on May 3rd, 2008. Hopefully this fall I will be attending Bethel University's graduate school to become a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC).

I am also continuing to work full-time at Mayo Clinic, in the Print Shop at the Support Center.

In my free-time, what little there is of it(!) I enjoy making my daughter smile, making my wife laugh, and hanging out with my nephews and nieces.

Jan's Update

I'm just about done with maternity leave (I've had three months off) and am scheduled to go back to work on April 19th. While I'm at work, Grandma G or Grandma H will be taking care of Amaya. I'm not really looking forward to going back to work! I'd rather be home with the baby! For now, I am going back part-time until Steve is done with school and/or gets a job with benefits - then I will be home full-time.

I am also enjoying a women's Bible study that meets every Thursday at our church, and spending time with my parents and Steve's parents and grandparents.

Amaya's Update

Hi new friends and family! I waited a long time to see all of you!

I have now learned to smile at Mommy and Daddy, at both grandmas, at my favorite stuffed animal and for no reason at all! I can also hold my head up, and Daddy likes me to practice sitting up by myself but I can't really do that yet. Daddy also likes to make funny noises at me! We talk to each other, but I can only make cute little noises - so far!

Mommy sings to me, and my favorite thing to do is just to watch Mommy! My second favorite thing to do is have Mommy give me my bath. I like splashing in the water! I also like to lay under a new toy that Daddy and Mommy bought for me, and kick my legs and wave my arms.

New baby!

On January 20th, 2008, we welcomed a new addition to our family - Amaya Hope! She weighed 5 lbs. 10 oz. and was 19 3/4 inches long. She has been a blessing to her parents, grandparents and extended family. We are also pleased that she is sleeping through the night!


Welcome to the Gatzke family's blog! Here you will find new and interesting information about what is happening in the Gatzke family. Stay tuned for more!