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Tuesday, December 30, 2008

The Snow Stash.

In the case that we forget what snow is, come July or so, we will have some spare snow stashed away amidst the popsicles and the pancakes.

H, could not leave the great outdoors today without bringing just a little bit inside.

And then he promptly asked me to write his name on the bag and also draw a boy.

He'd hate for anyone else to make claim on his snow.

May these be the winter days that we remember. I'd rather forget about the bad roads, the cold temps, and the icy, snowy blizzards we have so often. Instead may I remember the joy of my little boy saving some snow for another day.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Our Christmas: A Picture Story.

This little boy was up at 5:30am saying in his sing song voice: "Mama, I'm all done sleeping. Should we open our presidents?"

She thought she would get her "boring" clothes gift out of the way first, but she was mistaken by the box. It was Webkinz.


Opening Mario Cart for the Wii from H.
He's such a good gift giver, isn't he?

Showing off his newest Lightning McQueen shirt from Aunt Laurie.

Showing off one of her new outfits too.

Webcamming with dad.
E's first Christmas.
What do you say about those eyes?

My in-laws with all their grandchildren.
Ranging in age from almost 19 to 3 weeks old.

T, M, H and E with grandma and grandpa.

Our family.
This was the best we could get.
I have a feeling it's going to be like that for awhile.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008


This is me with two of the {many} gifts that God has given me.
Merry CHRISTmas!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

First Bath.

E's first bath at the hospital. 12.3.08
E's first bath at home. 12.21.08

She is so calm.

Especially when I look back at pictures of H's first bath....


Friday, December 19, 2008

Not A Lot of Time For Words.

Between Christmas parties, trying to finish some Christmas errands, Christmas cards, thank you notes, cousins visiting and oh yes, the children in this house, there is not a lot of time for words right now. (Even though my cousin and her boyfriend being here is awesome. So nice to have two extra sets of arms!)

So today you get some pictures.....
Little miss E.
Day 16.

I love dressing her.
And yes, she's wearing shoes already. People keep asking if I've done a ton of shopping and the answer is NO. I haven't had to. She's received great gifts but I did go out and buy her her first pair of shoes and also her Christmas dress. Besides that, it's all gifts.
We are so blessed by our family and friends.
H's last day at ECFE before Christmas. Great group of kids!

My little Lightning McQueen.
Between "Big Brother" gifts and some early Christmas gifts we should have stock in that little red race car.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

My Knight.

He knows me better than any other person. He knows what makes me smile. He knows what will make me sad. He is my knight.

He strives to make me happy and makes sure that I can do the things I want to do even when I don't appreciate it.

He provides for his family and doesn't complain doing it.

He compliments me and speaks highly of me to his friends and his colleagues, even when I don't merit compliments.

He reassures me and protects me when I am nervous or overwhelmed or afraid.

He pursues me.

He loves me in a way that only a spouse could love his wife. He gets over the petty issues and sees past that enough to love me without hesitation.

This man is my knight. My knight in shining armor.
There is something about the miracle of life and having a baby together that makes a couple grow even closer than they were just hours before.

In the weeks, the days and hours leading to E's birth, he again reassured me. And reminded me to enjoy the season of pregnancy. He joined me in anticipation, waiting to meet our newest one.

There were some scary moments before E was born but J was right there. Holding my hand. Smiling and reminding me that the doctors and nurses knew what they were doing.

J said that E was a girl from the very beginning of my pregnancy. And as she was born he joyfully announced, "It's a girl." as I cried tears of joy.
In those moments, I couldn't feel any closer to J than I do right then.

J took about a month off to be home with me and the kids after E's birth and for Christmas. On his own he decided to do this, because he loves me.

Having him home is wonderful. He takes care of so many things and makes sure things are just so. Though I am nursing Miss E, he'll still get up at night and help by changing her or bringing her to me. He gets up each morning with H and gets T and M out the door to school. I have yet to cook anything since we've been home from the hospital.

Like I said, it is wonderful.

The Lord blessed me with the gift of J as my husband. I do not deserve him. I am bratty and selfish and sometimes not-so-nice. But yet, the Lord graciously gave me J. And J, gives me daily mercy by forgiving me and loving me despite my unloveable qualities. He is my knight.

"In the heart of every man is a desperate desire for a battle
to fight, an adventure to live and a beauty to rescue."
John Eldredge

Monday, December 15, 2008

Little Miss E.

It's only been twelve days, yet I already can't remember life without her.

Saturday, December 13, 2008


Today, Miss E, turned 10 days old.

Ten days old is still "brand new" to me.

And today, H, went to a birthday party where once again before my eyes he transformed from a little one to a big one. He was so excited and so happy to go to a "friend" party.
Today, Saturday, December 13, might not be a monumental day for you. Maybe you're counting down to Christmas. Or maybe you did some shopping or baking. Maybe you did nothing.

Today marked one year. One year ago today my mom passed away.

I did not forget amidst the busyness of newborn life. As soon as the calendar turned the December memories flooded my mind as though they happened yesterday.

Meeting hospice. Talks with family. Hospital visits. Long tearful drives to and from the hospital. And one late night phone call. Waking my then-20-month old and bundling him in his blanket from 'Grandma Nan' to go to the hospital for what was the last time.

There is more, much, much more. But there is not much more I can say that I haven't already said.

I still miss my mom. And there are many times I wish that she were here or that I could call her or see her.
Lately I think that I would have loved to show off her newest granddaughter to her.

Yes, I still miss my mom.

Especially today.

"They" say the first year is the hardest. The holidays. The birthdays. The anniversaries.

But I am not so sure "they" are right.

Because even though the days have gotten easier, and even though the tears don't fall as quickly, there is still a hole in me, missing her.

My mumsy.
So, today, after a long and busy day of birthday fun and celebrating our own new life, I am thinking of her. Remembering the remarkable woman she was.

Acknowledging that I would not be who I am today if it weren't for her.

And realizing, I am so thankful that I am able to say that.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

One Week Old.

And on the seventh day, I took a shower.

Just kidding, today wasn't the first time I took a shower. But getting to the shower has been a little tougher.

Sunday morning, J took the bigs (T & M) to church and I stayed home with the littles (H & E) and I thought I'd have a really productive morning.

When they returned at 11:30, I was still in my pajamas and the breakfast dishes were still on the table. But hey, both H and E were fed, dressed and happy. That counts for something, doesn't it?

I have decided that right now isn't the time to be productive. I'd much rather be able to enjoy Evelyn's first days of life than rush around doing this or that. This crazy, busy time is just temporary.

So if I owe you a phone call, an email or posting here seems to be lagging behind, you know why. And someday I'll be all caught up. When there's a time for that. But right now I'm enjoying our newest chapter in life.

M and H playing in the snow on the deck.

H has been driving us crazy to get outside and it finally dawned on me that he could play on the deck and I could watch from inside. He loves it.

T, M and H have all done a great job adjusting to their new sister.

And just like I suspected, H instantly grew before my eyes when we brought his baby sister home. Never before has he looked so big, so old, so tough. It is indeed a bittersweet thing.
And as for Evelyn....
... she's doing great. We had our first outing Monday to the doctor. (and Target, of course.) She weighed in at 8 lbs even. She had been down to 7 lbs 2 oz when we left the hospital so we were very happy with her increased weight.

She's eating great.

Sleeping great. And though I hesitate to say this because I might be jinxing myself, but Sunday and Monday nights she only got up twice and last night, she only got up ONCE!

Seriously. I couldn't really ask for anything better than that.

We are so, so happy.

So, so blessed.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

E's Birth Story.

At twelve weeks along, I was told that due to H's birthsize and my size I wouldn't be carrying this baby past 38 weeks.

At twenty weeks, Miss E was right on track growth wise.

At thirty five weeks, the doctor said she just hoped I'd make it to thirty six weeks.

And at thirty nine weeks and three days I finally delivered a beautiful, healthy baby girl.

But, oh, what a journey it was.

From five weeks to nearly six months I was sick. Really sick. Like can't keep anything down, go to the hospital for fluids, need prescription medication sick.

And then there was that fateful Election Day where I went in for a routine exam and ended up being admitted to the Birthing Center with lots of concerns on if I'd be delivering five weeks early. Completely effaced. Already dillating. Contracting without my knowledge. (I am one of those lucky ones who didn't feel many contractions either time.)

From then on, I was on alert.

"Any day, any day." The doctor would say after each twice a week exam.

And each day I'd wake up wondering if today would be the day.

My labor with H had been quick. And they warned me that the second one would be even quicker.

At thirty nine weeks, I waddled in. Much larger around than ever. Tired. Uncomfortable. Impatient.

"Tonight or tomorrow." The doctor said after that visit.

Four centimeters dillated and he sent me home and told me to come back in the morning if my water didn't break before then.

It didn't.

And on December 3,

J and I walked off the elevator and down the hall and listened to a nurse rattle off question after question.

"When was the last time you used illegal drugs?"
"Do you feel safe in all your relationships?"
"Do you have any religious practices you'd like to incorporate in your labor?"

All the while I was anxious and nervous and wondering when she'd ever check my cervix as I knew a baby was on the way.

The blood pressure cuff strapped to my arm monitoring my ever-low blood pressure.

She strapped on a heart monitor to hear baby's heart, yet still didn't check my cervix.

She wanted to start an IV for penicillin as I tested positive for strep B. (A common infection among pregnant women that must be treated four hours before delivery to avoid passing on to the baby.)

I warned that IV's and I have problems.

She laughed at my warning.

Then missed my veins, bruising my right arm from elbow crease to wrist.

Another nurse comes in. Starts poking the other arm. And quickly an alarm goes off.

There is yelling.

They aren't picking up baby's heartbeat.

My blood pressure is too low.

My water breaks.

A doctor I've never seen runs in and decides to put a heart monitor on the baby's head and there is a deafening silence and scary looks among the many who are now in the room.

She yells that it's time to go to the OR.

I begin to cry as they throw scrubs at J and rush out of the birthing suite.

This was not my plan. This was not how it was supposed to be.

All the way down the hall, my mind is racing of oh no's and what if's and why's?

In the OR, it is cold, it is sterile and I am afraid.

A man above my head stretches both my arms out and tells me that I'll be going to sleep.

"No," I said, "I thought you got to be awake for c-sections?"

"Not yours." He said.

The room was hustling and bustling and crazy busy but just then the doctor yelled out, "Hold on. Let's give the baby another second here."

Silence and then, once again, those ba-dump, ba-dump, ba-dumps came right back up.

They let J in and shortly later moved us back to our room.

With one bruised arm and another with an IV halfway poked, I told my nurse that I was beginning to feel the need to push.

She quickly dismissed that idea and after starting a line of Penicillin, went to go have lunch.


Another nurse came in and I told her the same thing.

"Umm yeah. You're about to have a baby." She said after checking me. And then called the doctor saying I was at a 10 plus 1.

Twenty-eight minutes later, E was here.

She really was (and is) worth it all.

(Written and posted on 10/3/09, but I'm backdating it)

At Last.

By now, I'm sure most have guessed that Baby Beep Beep has arrived.

She sure has.
After three hours of labor, twenty eight minutes of pushing, Evelyn Nanette was born on Wednesday, December 3rd at 11:53am.
8 pounds, 4 ounces and 21 1/2 inches long. Perfect in every way.
Our hearts couldn't be any more full of love and joy.
While J said all along it would be a girl, I was skeptical. But I should have known it was a girl.

Only a girl would create such drama even in utero.

Six months of morning sickness requiring me to be on prescription meds.
Varicose vein issues.
Spending the last month impatiently waiting for any day to arrive.
And of course her quick and dramatic arrival to the world. A drop in my blood pressure, a loss of her heartbeat and a quick field trip to the OR, where just as the anesthesiologist told me I was going to go to sleep the doctor shouted that they found the heartbeat after all. Sending us back to our room to deliver naturally.

She was worth every single part.

"My baby sister."

"I love her."

"What's her name again?"

"She's so so cute."

She is here.

Making our family complete.

At last.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Just In Case You're Wondering.

Baby Beep Beep has not arrived.

Today was to have been J's first day of his month long leave and I sent him to work.

I am continually reminding myself that soon enough there will be a little one here and that there is an end to this, as I don't recall ever hearing of someone being pregnant forever. Right?