Sunday, April 24, 2011

He is Risen!

He is Risen!

Easter is one of the very best days of the whole year. I love that there is so much focus on Jesus and everything that He has done for us. It always makes me remember how sinful I am and how much he paid for me. His death on the cross was absolutely horrific and to think that He suffered and died so that I may have life everlasting is absolutely amazing. His resurrection three days later sealed the deal. It solidified the Gospel as the Truth.

I just LOVE to celebrate Easter! This song, In Christ Alone, has become one of my very favorite songs to listen to and to sing. There is so much truth in the words! Last year, B and I even had the opportunity to see this couple perform it live. Talk about an amazing worship experience!!

Praise God! May you have a blessed Easter as you celebrate the Savior with me!

Easter Pics!

I wanted to share a few of the pictures we took this morning as our "2011 Easter Pictures."

B hasn't been home for an Easter with our kids since Easter 2008 (and D was still in my belly that year, haha), so this was especially special for us. It is also special since it is our last pictures where I am still pregnant and we are still a family of four.

Although I obviously cannot pinpoint the exact day the baby will be born, I know it will be, I am 39 weeks and 1 day. I delivered both the other children at 39 weeks and 1 day, haha. So, I hope this one won't be "cooking" too much longer :-)

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

As we wait...

I am 38 weeks and 4 days pregnant. I am 3 cm dilated and I had my membranes stripped yesterday. (If you don't know what that means, just disregard it or google it if you're interested)

Our family is simply waiting on this baby to arrive. I have contractions just about every time I stand up and walk around but they quickly subside when I sit down and rest.

The kids and I ran to Kohls this morning so C could spend some of her birthday money from her great-grandmother. I thought we better go and get her some Spring/Summer clothes that actually fit before I am either too big and uncomfortable to feel like walking around anymore or until I have a newborn and am not really able to go out and wander around Kohls anymore with 3 (yikes!) kiddos.

Then we came home, ate a quick lunch, and headed out back to play.

I keep sticking my camera in my hospital bag, but then life happens and I run and retrieve it once again. I don't want to miss a thing. I don't want to forget these moments with my children. I feel the need to document not only the "big" moments in life, but the everyday moments as well.

It makes me feel as though I can make time stand still.

I want to "freeze frame" so much of what I get to experience with my children. This is why I love being a stay-at-home-mom. I have a million of these moments in any given week :-)

So, here is what we were up to...

One of my wonderful Bunco friends gave D this Cars tricycle. The kids are having a ball playing with it!
This is David "painting" his toenails with chalk from the ground. And yes, he is wearing a pink shirt. He requested a pink shirt. And he likes his nails to look pretty like mine and C's. To me, it all makes sense. He is with us all day every day. Its only seems natural that he would want to be like us cool girls :-) But....getting a brother probably isn't a bad thing, haha.
And of course, I can never resist photographing my kids just being kids. They are so photogenic. Its probably because they have been in front of my camera lens since the day they were born.
And lastly, here is the only way I could take a self portrait of my gigantic belly.
And then of my new awesome highlights in my hair.
Between my painted toes and fresh hair color, I feel like a totally new woman!

Now back to waiting....

Monday, April 18, 2011

The Buzz

I feel like today my little 2 1/2 year old D reached some sort of milestone in his life.

Not his first word.
Or his first steps.
Or even his first day of preschool.

No, my hubby decided to buzz his hair for the first time.

We've had to have D's hair cut several times over the past year and at about $16 a pop at the kids' hair-cut place, it was adding up to be kind of ridiculous - even if we only went every couple of months. Between D's sporadic haircuts and my husband's bi-monthly cuts, the men in my family were getting considerably more "beautification" than the gals.

So today, B suggested that he cut D's hair with the clippers.

My first though, was "NO! Not my baby's fine soft hair!"

But B promised he wouldn't cut it super short - he said he'd just "clean up the sides."
Of course, once he did the sides, though, blending it with the longer top became challenging. He suggested he buzz the whole thing....I KNEW this would happen!

I made him select a very high numbered guard and hid behind my camera. Seeing my baby's hair fall to the ground from behind the view finder was much easier than watching it fall up close.
In all honesty, my husband did a great job. D's hair looks very nice and there is still plenty of hair for me to run my fingers through as I rock him and sing to him (yes, I do that every day - actually, twice a day)
I am assuming this is going to be our new way of maintaining our son's hair. Only a cowlick in the front makes this "style" a little unruly, but overall, I think he looks adorable.

However, my hubby better not take the clippers anywhere near the new baby for the first 2 1/2 years of his life...

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Pedicure Pampering

So, after MUCH delay, I finally went today and got a pedicure.

Its been over a year since I've had one.

After I paid the bill ($$$$), I remembered why its been over a year.

Thankfully, my wonderful youngest sister decided to treat me to this pampering (or at least to a decent portion of this Washington DC priced pedicure) rather than get me a gift for the new baby. I thought it was a GREAT idea! I have been feeling "blah" and uncomfortable for weeks now, and a nice long pedicure made me feel much better.

Plus, it removed a ton of dead skin and left my toes with a gorgeous shade of bright pink!
Are you wondering whose little feet those are next to mine?

Those would be my birthday girl's feet. Her Aunt decided that if she was treating me to a pedicure as a "baby gift" then she could treat C to one as a birthday present too. It was her first pedicure and I know I'll never forget how quiet and still she sat while the gentleman worked on her tiny feet and painted that deep red and those little flowers on her toes.

I am very thankful for the special afternoon I had with my only daughter. It made yet another cool and rainy day seem special and bright to both of us.

At 38 weeks pregnant, I know that our family life is about to be changed forever and this brief session of pampering with the girl who first made me a mom was just what she and I both needed :-)

Thanks, Aunt Tracy!

And of course,

Thank You, Lord for the memories we made.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

A Rough Day

Today has been a rough day.

The weather here has been less than ideal. We get one day of beautiful sunshine for every 4 days of cloudy, cold, drizzly rain. I am ready to see the sun more often than not. I am ready to FEEL the sun on my face when I step outside. Today was one of the cool, cloudy, drizzly days.

However, the weather wasn't the only contributing factor to my rough day.

I feel so unattractive at this point. I know that being 37 1/2 weeks pregnant and 32 pounds over my normal weight is very much part of the reason, but there is more to it.

When I look in the mirror, I can't help but to focus in on the dark roots in my hair. My awesome highlights have just grown out so quickly - most likely from the prenatal vitamins making my hair grow at an abnormally fast pace. I want so badly to go get them touched up so I can feel confident and good when I look in the mirror. I just don't see it happening anytime soon. Maybe I can avoid mirrors until then.

Then there is my leg. My poor right calf that looks just pitiful. It looks like someone took a baseball bat to it. But alas, its just a pregnancy symptom. A big varicose vein and a ton of spider veins. Each time I see my bare calf, I cringe. It isn't until I look at my left calf do I remember how clear and "perfect" the skin used to look. I sure hope it goes down after I give birth. I can't imagine a whole summer in shorts, capris, and skirts with my leg looking like this...
Oh, and last night I saw that my ankles and calves were retaining fluid. Awesome. Nothing makes a preggo woman feel better than swollen ankles.

To top off my "blah"ness, B got word that he'll be back on the road traveling again very soon after the birth of the baby. Not just for a day or two, but possibly for a couple weeks. I am trying NOT to stress about this yet, but at the same time, I did have a meltdown at the thought of being home alone with my 2 older kids and the tiny 2-3 weeks old for a couple weeks. My mom is supposed to come help me at the end of May for a week or so and then she and I will drive back home to Atlanta with the kids to visit all our family down there. But, there will possibly be a good solid week before she can arrive where I'll be on my own.

Nothing is 100% set in stone, so its not incredibly worth worrying over, but I can't help but to wish I was closer to family. Or that my family was closer to me.

My biggest prayer right now is that the baby stays put in my belly until my due date or VERY close to it. B's mom and sister will be in town at that time to help for a week and it would be wonderful to have them available to watch the kids while I'm in the hospital delivering the baby and recovering from his birth. We have wonderful friends that have offered to help out as much as possible, so I know they won't go uncared for, but still, I hope it works out so their Nana and Aunt can watch them instead.

Between feeling like a big ugly pregnant woman and hearing the news that I will be left alone to care for the kids for days on end, I decided at 3:15pm that I should take a shower and try and get myself cleaned up. D had just refused his nap, so I didn't get to really rest on the couch like I normally do. He and I were both cranky. I thought a quick hot shower might make me feel better.

While the water felt good, again, I was grossed out at the sight of my leg when I tried to shave my legs - which is quite a challenging task with a huge belly in the way! Then I was reminded at how gross my toe nails look. I need a pedicure more than the crops need rain. They have old purple nail polish on them that is chipped in a hundred different places. I am out of nail polish remover, but even if I wasn't out, I don't think I could reach my toes long enough to remove the polish and much less, to paint them a fresh new color. I need a pedicure. Bad.

Then when I tried to blow dry my "rooty" hair into its normal style, I learned that my blow dryer has just about kicked the bucket. Its been on the fritz for a while now, but today I had to blow dry my whole head on the lowest setting. It took forever...and it didn't really do much for my hair style.

Today was just one of those days when I felt the need to escape. I need to escape from my house. I feel horrible about how I look. I feel sad that B will be traveling so soon after the baby is born. I feel bummed that I'm not near my family for support.

I am trying very hard to remember that many other military wives go through things like this. Many go through much worse. B isn't deployed and I am SO thankful for that. He is going to be here for the baby's birth. Many moms I know can't say that for their baby's births. Many daddy's leave right after baby is born. B isn't really "leaving." He's just traveling. There is a very distinct difference. I am trying to count my blessings because I know they are plentiful.

But the human side of me wants to scream. I want my mom. Or my mother-in-law. I want them down the street to come and help me when I call crying at 3am because I'm exhausted. I want one of my sisters or sisters-in-law to be able to come and pick up my kids and take them to their house for slumber parties while I am in the hospital so I wouldn't have to worry about them the whole time. I want B to be able to stay at the hospital with me while I'm there rather than have to come home and stay with the kids. I don't want to have to be alone overnight with the baby in the hospital. I want him there with me.

I am trying to get over all that because there is nothing I can do to change it. It doesn't make me want to cry any less though. It didn't make today any less rough. I cried a couple times. I tried to talk myself out of crying. But in the end, my hormonal and emotional self won over.

At least the sun came out by the end of the day. And my husband did eventually come home from work. And the kids eventually went to bed. And now the house is quiet.

I am going to go hop in the tub and take a hot bath. I will try not to look at my ugly toenails, swollen ankles, or purple puffy calf...

If I did, that may start the whole "rough day" cycle over again.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Party and Prep

Has it really been over a week since I've blogged? The date on my last entry says it was April 4th...thats over a week, so yep, I guess so!

Sorry about that. You may have thought that I had gone off and had the baby and had a REAL reason to be busy. But no, the baby is still safe and sound in my belly for now - although I am 2 cm dilated and the baby is head-down and as active as ever!

I have been very busy this week though. Every spare moment I have is spent either preparing for the baby in some way or resting/napping (if I'm being honest). I have been packing my bag for the hospital, packing the baby's diaper bag, packing my kids' bag to have here at home so nobody has to go searching through their drawers for clean clothes while I'm away. I have been vacuuming and putting away clothes left and right. I've cleaned out the car several times and I just remembered tonight that I need to bathe the dog and change my sheets...seriously, this is how my mind works. It just jumps from one "needs-to-be-done-task" to the next without any kind of rhyme or reason.

Last night I realized I couldn't find my slippers to take to the hospital. I got all nervous that I may go into labor and not have anything to walk around in so I quickly ran out to Target to get some. At 9pm, I learned that April is not a good time of the year to be slipper shopping. I had about three options. These ugly things are what I went home with because they fit the best and they were the most comfortable. I am ignoring the fact that they match nothing and that they are pretty funny looking...
On a different note, my husband did finally make his way back home last Thursday. I am so thankful to have him home again. He is such a huge help with the kids and around the house. Plus, I always enjoy his company - even when he is just sitting on his laptop writing a paper for one of his online classes (like he is at the moment).

B made it home just in time to get everything prepared for C's 5th birthday party at our house over the weekend. I was stressed about getting the house clean and making sure I had everything I needed to make the cupcakes, ice cream sundaes, and the two crafts that we had planned. Oh, and of course, the balloons to decorate. We were throwing a Strawberry Shortcake "craft" party and had about 10 little friends coming over.

As I stayed busy on Friday getting things done for the party, I planned on cleaning everything Saturday morning. I figured there wouldn't be too much use in cleaning while my kids were still running around playing and "living" in the house.

But, as does sometimes happen, the Lord tossed us a bit of a curve ball Saturday morning when my friend down the street went into labor with her third baby. I was her designated care-taker for her older two children, ages 2 1/2 and 5. Bless her heart, she knew Saturday was C's party so she wanted to make SURE it was real labor before calling to ask if she could bring the kids over. When she finally went to the hospital, she was already 7cm dilated, haha. I love how we women are sometimes!! She even made her kids pancakes before heading out the door to go deliver baby no.3!

Needless to say, having two extra kiddos hanging out with us as we finished cleaning and decorating did make he day slightly more hectic, but overall, everything still went perfectly! D napped, the kids ate lunch, and we ended up with a WONDERFUL little party. C had a blast and I think the other children enjoyed themselves as well.

Oh, and my friend did have the baby - a beautiful little girl!

Here are a few pictures from the party :-) I can't believe C is getting SO big. I couldn't be more proud of my sweet daughter. She is one of the Lord's finest creations and I truly delight in watching her grow up. She continues to amaze me with her generosity, kindness, strength, and love on a daily basis.

Monday, April 4, 2011

The Arrival of the Baby Products :-)

Look what came in the mail over the last few days...
Its a couple of the items I had mentioned that I really wanted to try for the new baby. I am always amazed at how God provides for me and my family. He is so faithful to His children.

After I wrote this blog entry, within about 24 hours, all the products were spoken for from my family members and friends. My sister chose a baby gift from the blog, my expectant mommy-friend made me one, my mom chose a gift, and my hubby took the last one...and an additional one not listed on that list.

I still have one item en-route to me from my hubby - the stroller! I am so very excited to use my Baby Jogger City Mini. I can't wait to try it out with D. He is the perfect test subject for all the baby products out there. He climbed in the baby carrier without hesitation and then proceeded to call himself a "pack-pack." (Otherwise known as a backpack)

I love the carrier AND the beautiful diaper bag from Lands End. Please ignore that the monogram is backwards...I couldn't figure out how to flip the picture around on my computer. My brain is fried and I am too tired to care :-)