Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Birthday Baby

The day my mother turned 31, I was born. 

Yesterday marked my own 31st year.  I spent the day with my own contractions.  Here's how it went.

Contractions started on Sunday and continued all.day.long.  We took the kids for a hike in the dark Sunday night and told them the baby might come tomorrow.  We put the kids to bed and cleaned the house.  I kept contracting.  Around 1 AM I was no longer able to sleep through the contractions.  I started timing them and was excited to find they came just five minutes apart.  An hour and a half later, I called my midwife to give her a heads up.  We asked Mammie and Poppa to come get the kids.

{Elijah sat up in bed and said, "Oh!  Is the baby coming out?"  Then he climbed out of his bunkbed and prayed for me.}

The children left around 3 AM.  I tried to sleep again - and did, fitfully, for about two hours.

Then I walked around the house and the neighborhood having contractions.  The contractions would space out - but still come at least every 10 minutes - and then pick back up.  I felt like I was riding a rollercoaster, and I was reaching the point of exhaustion.  The tell-tale sign?  Yesterday evening, per our midwife's advice, we were going to run and get some food.  I got ready and then had a meltdown that would rival any of my children's.  The kind of meltdown where you just stare at your kid and think, "Wow.  What happened?  Is something wrong with their brain?"  (Eric was actually giving me that look.)

I've always been jealous of those people that walk around halfway dilated for days and days before their baby comes.  And I've wondered what it would feel like.  Well, it feels just the same as walking around with a closed cervix...only, in my case, there have been a lot more contractions.

Eric is off to work where he can explain to people that yes, we are planning a homebirth and no, you can't get pitocin at home. 

I'm off to pick up the children who I'm sure will have lots of great questions as to how/why/when the baby HAS NOT COME.


Monday, December 10, 2012

Home Life

This is the high chair our friends bought us when I was expecting Elijah.  Five years and three children later, it finally bit the dust.  Here Elijah prepares for his last haircut in his highchair.  It is so weird to think of him using that as a baby!
Eggs for breakfast, a trend for which I am very thankful.  We also have them for lunch and dinner~:-)

My kids are REALLY into forts.  The couch was moved away from the wall for flea-vacuuming purposes (more on that saga soon) and the kids found a new hideout.
Moving the couch spawned a whole new set of adventure for these guys.  That is what I consider creative play~;-)
7.10.2012 - 7.12.2012


We had a really fun little run with gymnastics lessons this summer.  I found a Groupon and, after making sure Elijah and Haven could do back-to-back classes, signed them up!  I have very fond memories of my own gymnastics lessons, and was really excited for the kids to try everything.  Gymini Athletics exceeded my expectations.  They had Elijah and Haven both running hard for their 45 minute lesson.  After I found out about the siblings playroom, I was even more excited about this place. 

Girlfriend was on a mission during her classes.  They set up six or so different activities in a circular pattern and you follow the path to the next activity.  Haven remembered how to do each thing; I was surprised at how quickly she caught on.

Waiting in line for her trampoline time.  I think this was her favorite part.  We had to practice our jumps at home; "pencil jump" and "out and in" did not come naturally for my children~;-)

This little stinker was constantly trying to join the class.  She would sneak around or under the fence and just start rolling around on the floor.

This was Elijah's favorite activity, I believe.  He was great on all the bar activities.  "Mom, why don't they move my bars up even higher?"
The best parts about our gymnastics experience were gleaning ideas of things we could do at home and observing how well Haven does when peppered with lots of physical tasks. Hopefully we'll run across another Groupon, because this was FUN! 7.9.2012

Monday, November 26, 2012

Personality Differences

From these pictures, can you tell that our girls have different personalities?

In retrospect, perhaps a trampoline would be a worthwhile investment...



 "Nah-kins, Momma?  I do it?"
I usually get a few more pictures, but things must have been a bit hectic that day...~;-)

7.5 & 7.6.2012

Independence Day 2012

One of our local parks held a great Independence Day party.  After naps, we hit the road for lots of playground time, dinner, and a fun fireworks display. 

Elijah learned how to go down a "fireman's pole" all by himself.

We were really impressed by the fireworks show in this tiny town.  It was lengthy and good and free!


Horton, the Hero

This week we are reading about heroes. This morning I read Horton Hatches the Egg and cry. 

Mayzie, the lazy bird, complains about sitting on her egg. 
     "I'm tired and I'm bored
     And I've kinks in my leg.....
     I'd take a vacation, fly off for a rest
     If I could find someone to stay on my nest!

     If I could find someone, I'd fly away---free..."

Mayzie could also be named Lydia.  I don't have kinks in my legs, but it does hurt to walk and I do imagine being free from all these responsibilities. 

Yesterday I read Psalm 106 and saw myself there, too. 
     "Then they despised the pleasant land,
     having no faith in His promise. 
     They murmured in their tents,
     and did not obey the voice of the Lord." 

What am I doing?  Despising these good gifts God has given me.  Wanting to run from the blessings surrounding me.  Clenching my jaw at {yet another} scream.  Speaking through clenched teeth in an effort to control my own words. 

Aaaagh, but Horton---the hero---"sat and he sat and he sat and he sat."  He was faithful and he didn't complain despite the seasickness, despite the scorn, despite the relocation.  And, at the end?  He goes home happy "one hundred percent!"

My email reads of a friend who has gone into labor three weeks early and I cry again, jealous, willing my contractions to be productive before the end of the year. 

I've blown it already - not even able to live up to the character of a Dr. Suess elephant.

     "Seek the Lord and His strength;
     seek His presence continually!"

What a comfort to know that God's strength is much greater than a splitting pelvis, much more enduring than {another} day of screaming, and much stronger than this hard heart.  I'm seeking that other-worldly strength. 


Tuesday, November 20, 2012

My Helper

What a blessing my little helper is! I am so thankful that he is (typically) extremely happy to help!


Swim Lessons

We have loved our time with Ms. Beverly at Sea Star Swim School!  This summer Elijah earned his "I Can Swim in the Deep End" certificate and he was promoted to the next class.  He started swimming a whole lap which was very exciting!
Polly Jane, our water baby, was SO SAD that she didn't get to swim.  She does enjoy yelling out each and every window as we take the big kids to their lessons.
Haven had some struggles keeping her goggles on.  As in, she ripped them off her face every time she surfaced.  Thankfully, Ms. Beverly is extremely patient.
She learned to do all the proper movements this year.  She sinks to the bottom, but swims like a fish.  Unfortunately, she rarely surfaces to breathe.  It is extremely strange because her lack of oxygen doesn't even bother her.  She comes up laughing!
The slide is always a treat.
Bubble parties are a tradition at the end of class...at least for my children.
We ran to Kroger after getting everyone showered and dressed and I didn't resist the $1/scoop banner.  Polly Jane was SO EXCITED to get her very own cup.  Haven, clearly, is also excited for her treat.

I'm looking forward to getting the children (and Jolly!) back into swim lessons.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Movie Date

If you have holes in the wall where a television used to be....
If you have a tired Mombo....
If you have a million things to do.....
If you have children easily mesmerized by a movie....

...sometimes you just have to use an alternate viewing location.
Here is Mom pretending she is comfortable as springs poke her in the behind.  Here is Polly Jane pretending she is going to sit still and watch the movie for more than two minutes.
 She didn't watch the movie, but she did discover the stash of toys~:-)

Look, everyone comes back so happy!  Mission accomplished.


Shoe Fetish

We may have a problem.  Girlfriend will steal your shoes the moment you take them off.  She is just SO HAPPY about being able to wear them too!