Tuesday, July 30, 2013

living life... making memories

Ahhhh, Brayden. You are such a joy in our lives. You decided to give us a break and not walk by yourself until the week following your 18-month birthday. Since you've taken that turn for freedom, it seems like you've skyrocketed from a little baby to a little boy. Crazy!

You love puzzles... and have already put together many electronic puzzles and puzzle pieces. You watched mommy and daddy do it, and then figured out how to drag and drop the pieces into the puzzle. That puzzle piece recognition moved over into regular puzzles soon, and even though you easily get frustrated if you can't get the puzzle piece in, we encourage you to keep trying and you get it.

You love to eat... the only problem with that is you're not the best at knowing how big of a bite to take. Many a times we've not been able to give you the next bite you want (or we remove food from your plate) until you finish chewing the gob that is already in your mouth. We were at Davanni's with Grandma and Grandpa and we had all finished eating... and you slowly worked your way through at least a piece and a half of pizza, if not more. But, even though we were sure you had to be full, you saw the one lone piece of crust sitting on the table and could not leave it there. You begged for it "Eh... eh..." while pointing your finger, and mommy caved. Since you couldn't get it torn with your teeth, you shoved the whole thing in your mouth. Now... most of us adults couldn't keep from laughing, but we also had to remove it from your mouth, which made you very upset. We took that as a cue that our dinner was over and headed to the car.

You love sitting in the driver's seat of the truck and car and playing with all the buttons. You are slowly starting to form words, but you communicate pretty well what you want. Your "eh.... eh... eh" is adorable and I know that we'll miss it when you can talk. You say "Dada" and "Momma" ... a little bit of "uh oh" ... you're working on "hello" and "all done" and a few others.

Here's a couple recent moments that cracked me up.

I was waiting for Mackenzie to come and give you breakfast in your high chair... there was just a little cereal left in this box, so I was holding the box open for you until you decided to take it. After you took it, you couldn't figure out how to get the cereal again.....


Your use of utensils is getting better and better. I just love watching you. :-) 



You love the iPad, you love watching yourself on videos and looking at pictures of us. Any time you see a pic of our family you stop, point, and say "Eh!"

You looooooove Tucker and he's probably the one who still gets you to giggle and laugh the hardest, especially when he gets the zooms and runs like crazy around the house. You love it! And you try to give him hugs, which he sometimes accepts and sometimes casually walks away from. Last night while daddy was cleaning Tucker's ears, you went over and petted him and happily laid your head down on him.

You love having something in your hand... been that way since your first ultrasound, so it seems!... and you will walk around the house with random toys (and then leave them in random places). It's pretty cute. You also walk around with food in your hand that you eat slowly or you are just holding onto for a rainy day. Tucker then follows you around like crazy. Sometimes you hold onto food for 10+ minutes, and occasionally, Tucker gets lucky, like the time you tripped and fell with graham crackers in your hand. Tucker's patience was rewarded and I think you were too distracted with falling to realize he ate your snack.

You love graham crackers and recognize the box and what it inside. You already love Mackenzie, your nanny while we are waiting for baby #3. Your smile melts us all. You are very detailed and love books.

Well, that's all for now... more stories to come later. Love you dearly, little one.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

parenting, the speed of time, and Cheaper by the Dozen 2

Yes, I just teared up watching Cheaper by the Dozen 2... and yes, I decided I may keep it around on our DVR for the next six months just in case I need to be reminded of what's coming in January. (The oldest daughter has her baby boy at the end!)

It made me tear up for a lot of different reasons, probably mainly the pregnancy hormones... but I really like the picture of a family it presents. You can't over-parent or your kid will go bonkers, but you love and cherish every moment and let go as they grow older. And I know Brayden is only 1 1/2, but I know how quickly 1 1/2 came... and how time continues to tick by. I just want to enjoy the moments and love my family with everything I have.

I also love that two mom-and-dad homes are prominent in the movie, one of which the marriage has lasted probably 20-30 years and they are still in love with each other. The morals, although still "American," are so much better than what is presented in today's movies. It makes me think it's almost "classic." I know... a movie from ten years ago, classic? Definitely not in the sense of 1950's classic, but there's something about the family morals and values presented that I desperately wish was still presented in media today. A mom and dad... kids who are just kids... humor that isn't bathroom humor or crass... just good, old-fashioned entertainment.

Anyhoo, this wasn't meant to be a post all about media. I'm pondering this whole time-going-by and parenting thing as I watch Brayden get to know our nanny who is helping out while I can't lift him. He already loves her and has developed a relationship with her, and it's a little weird to watch. I can say (as many mommy t-shirts probably say), I will always be his first love. We share a bond that no one else can have... and he will develop different "bonds" with different people.

It makes me think back to the special place in my heart that all the kids I babysat I have... particular the neighborhood families I took care of. I still love those children like they were my own. It makes me realize it's okay to share Brayden.

Now, it might sound silly to write all this down, but as a blogger, I "tip my hand" a little just in case sharing what I feel helps someone else.

I get to share Brayden a lot during this time of bedrest... and some days that's hard, some days that isn't. Brayden has plenty of love and smiles to go around, so I always know I can have special time with him, even if I can't carry him upstairs or lift him into his crib or car seat. I will get to do all that again in six months. Yes, he will be older and it stinks that I'm missing out on putting him to bed for so long, but that has to be okay. I'm learning to enjoy this time with him in a different way.

I think I'm sitting back and watching him more.... He's grown so much in the past month... he's learning life like crazy. I just look at him and think, "He's not a baby any more. He's a little boy!"

I'm looking forward to the future. As I watched the movie tonight, I just thought, I love my family... all six of us... Erik, me, Brody, Brayden, Tucker, and baby number next.

This is exactly the place I want to be.


Wednesday, July 10, 2013

accessing God's place of safety

So I'm a few days into my journey of patience until baby #3 and I'm already remembering the difficulties and finding new ones. I'm sure I'll expound on them soon, but overall, I'm doing well and taking it one day at a time.

I read this verse last night and have been pondering it.

Fearing people is a dangerous trap, but trusting the Lord means safety. (Pr. 29:25)

I looked up these words in blueletterbible.com and found out that word safety means to be high or in an inaccessible city. The root word is sometimes translated as exalted. To me, that means when you trust God, you are lifted above what you are facing to an inaccessible place of safety. You look down and watch God take care of the situations you see with your eyes. In such a high place, you don't actually deal with it; you let God deal with it.

It's interesting that comes right after fearing people. The Message Bible puts it this way: "The fear of human opinion disables; trusting in God protects you from that." 

I often find myself looking to man's opinion and making sure that they approve of what I do to help me know I'm on the right track, but that isn't always good. I think it has its place, but it cannot be the compass by which you dictate your life. Trusting in God takes you beyond needing man's approval. You're in that high city where God is ruler and you're trusting Him to help you make it through each day.

I like that. :-)

Monday, July 8, 2013

number three is on the way!

It's crazy to believe I'm in the middle of my third pregnancy! Baby number three is coming January 20, 2014. Yippeee!!! We are absolutely thrilled.

For those of you who don't know, we only have one baby here on earth (Brayden), but we have one (our first) hanging out in heaven (Brody) So by the natural eye, it's baby number two, but really, it's baby number three. And when I still look at Brayden, he's not my oldest. He's my middle child. :-) I like feeling that because that means Brody hasn't left my heart, but will always be a part of the family. I do have to sometimes remember, though, that for all Brayden knows and acts like right now, he is an only child! We've told him about Brody and baby 3, but that doesn't change that he's used to all the attention!

It's kinda fun... Brayden was due on January 23 and Baby 3 is due January 20. That means they'll be pretty much exactly two years apart. Brayden came on January 11... we'll see when Baby 3 makes his/her appearance. Could be the exact same day! Wouldn't that be crazy! 

This time around, I think we are going to wait to find out if we're having a boy or girl. We desperately wanted a boy as our oldest, and we got doubly blessed with our two boys... but as to another boy or girl, I don't know that we have a preference, so why not wait for the surprise? Fun! 

Now, because of what happened with Brody (you can read that story here), the day after the 4th, I had the same procedure (cerclage) done I did with Brayden. Basically, baby got stitched in to help him/her stay put until January. That means I will be on "light activity/bedrest" through January. Why? The reason Brody came early was the pressure he put on my cervix and my cervix couldn't handle it. The stitch helps, but the less pressure I put on it with activity (and the growing baby) the better for keeping baby safe and snug inside. 

Last time we weren't one hundred percent sure I'd need the surgery, so it snuck up on us and we also had a lot of bad memories associated with pregnancy ending badly. This time, we were prepared in advance for knowing I'd be out of commission for doing much plus we have a picture of the reward we will have in our arms when this journey is through! We also hired a nanny who will help with Brayden throughout the week, and Erik and my family and friends will all be pitching in to help cover other times. (I can't lift Brayden at all... bummer!) I've also been able to mentally prepared with making the most of my pre-surgery time. All of this is verrrry good, even though a little intimidating to have six months of low activity staring you in the face! 

There's a good chance I'll be blogging more since I'll be hanging out on the sofa much, so you'll probably be hearing from me more often as I journey through this... and then once baby comes, I probably won't be on here as much! Funny how that works....

Now a side note... I've had a few questions (and have asked them myself) about if I would have to go through bedrest again... and I've thought, "Couldn't I pray and believe God for healing and a different path this time?" Yes, I certainly could, but a couple factors play into our decision to go ahead with the same path as last time. First, I would have to beg and plead and have an extremely good reason to decline surgery for my doctor to approve it... and I still don't think she would! She wants us to have a healthy baby too! The cerclage helps make that possible. Second, I know that prayers for healing need to have faith behind it... and not that I couldn't have faith, but as a hormonal, pregnant mom who has lost her first son through pregnancy just by being pregnant and living life... it's not a "faith battle" that I want to fight on a daily basis. I'd rather have the proactive safety of my doctor's help through surgery and laying low. And I'm okay with that!

So there's my story! Another chapter is being written, and we are excited for the future.