Monday, 6 July 2015

...Ta-da!

It has been so long since I have sat down and written; I admit I feel a little rusty. We have some big news that I am compelled to write about - a new addition.

Meet the littlest member of our family. SHE is due to arrive November 20th.




I am a little over twenty weeks along. We decided to try things differently this time and keep the news quiet until we had more information from the doctor. Because we have moved since my pregnancy with Kenny, I am seeing a whole new team of OBs and specialists, and the current specialist has been very cautious with his diagnostic opinions. We had hoped to have a good idea about how the baby was doing at 16 weeks, but he was not able to give us a definitive answer at that time. Today (after an hour and a half of diagnostic ultrasound stress), he pronounced this little one healthy. We are very thankful that God blessed us with this new life, and grateful that we will have the opportunity to raise this daughter.

This pregnancy has been a unique experience. I have been feeling much worse physically than I did with Kenny, and more nauseous/ hormonal than I did with Leah, but also much less tired (that pregnancy was very physically draining even before we knew anything was wrong). I have been dealing with anxiety, mostly in the week leading up to my various ultrasounds, but nothing like I did with Kenny. I think it helped not talking about it as much, and it also helped that we were not expecting this particular bit of news (you know you were wondering), and going into this pregnancy without the pressing desire for another baby right at that particular moment did make it easier too as we waited and wondered what would happen. Some days I feel like God is playing a joke on me (and since the ending appears to be happy, it is a funny one), as we decided last year not to pursue pregnancy again, and I gave my sister my maternity clothes when I saw her over Christmas, told my friends I was done with pregnancy, and tossed out my nursing bras...then just a few months later found out things were not going to go according to that plan. I should have learned by now not to make plans, because things never seem to go the way I intend. I'm okay with that right now.

It probably goes without saying, but I am thrilled to be having a girl. I screamed in the poor nurse's ear when she called to tell me. It was so loud I had to apologize, and then guiltily explain that I would have been happy for a boy too, but, well, I already had three. Expect this poor child to be swathed in pink and bows and glitter and tulle. I am so done with blue. The little boys are less thrilled. Tommy and Kenny continue to hold out hope that it might be a boy (despite DNA testing and repeat ultrasounds), while Nic is usually happy about it, as he was rooting for a girl about half of the time.

We would appreciate your prayers for the continued health and growth of our sweet little girl, and my anxiety in that regard, especially when I reach the late third trimester. Although she did not inherit SRPS, we are more acutely aware of everything that can go wrong from here on out. I suppose that is the downside of attending pregnancy loss support groups - you really learn too much. Although I think that once you have been the one in the "only one in ten thousand" statistic, you never feel entirely comfortable with pregnancy (or any statistics designed to make you feel better). Therefore, I can use all the prayer I can get.

If you would have told me seven years ago, when I despaired of ever having a child, that today I would be raising three crazy, adorable boys and be pregnant with another little girl, I don't think I would have believed it. It was very healing to visit Leah's grave this year, pregnant with this little one and hopeful that we would finally have a chance to watch a little girl grow up. I am repeatedly amazed as I watch God continue to build beautiful things out of our pile of ashes.

Wednesday, 24 June 2015

Seven Years

2008


2009



2010


2011



2012



2013



2014


2015


Saturday, 25 April 2015

Whale Carrot vs. Pink Mustache

I find it is best to keep a camera handy during meal times, since there's something about the context of a polite gathering that seems to inspire silliness. I don't post nearly as many of these pictures as I probably should - maybe because they don't necessary group together coherently. Anyhow, without further ado, I present The Time Tommy Found a Carrot Shaped Like a Whale and Didn't Want to Eat It Because It Was Too Awesome followed by The Time Kenny Rubbed His Upper Lip So Raw That He Gave Himself a Mustache Which He Wore Proudly For About a Week


Ahab's Carrot


I have a pink mustache

Friday, 24 April 2015

Happy Birthday Tommy!

Sometimes I'm not sure how we got here, but we now officially have a seven year old! We celebrated Tommy on his birthday with his family presents, highlights below include a Lego set and a talking Ninja Turtle card (and, not pictured because he has to pick it out still, a hand-brake bike). Tommy has grown a great deal this year, both in height and personally. I appreciate his helpfulness with his brothers and around the house. Recently I contracted some kind of flu at the exact same time that Jeff had beamtime and was completely unable to help, and Tommy took care of his brothers almost all day. They watched a lot of TV, wore strange outfits, and might have only eaten yogurt and pretzels...but they all survived thanks to his intervention. He was so sweet bringing me cups of water and, when I could finally keep something down, pretzels. The experience, while terrible for us all, certainly demonstrated to me how much he has grown in his ability to handle responsibility.

He continues to love sports, especially football, but he has been playing soccer and baseball. He also participates in Cub Scouts and, of course, in church activities. He is showing much more maturity in these areas as well, and has started asking very good questions about God...and also some strange ones. His school teacher tells me he is a very hard worker, a great reader, and a leader in the classroom. At a conference she told me that she randomly chose him to demonstrate how to have a conversation about a book (an exercise she does every year), and the dialogue she had with him was the best she has had with a student. The book was The Cat in the Hat, and I can't even remember the last time we read it, so I was certainly impressed that he did such a good job. All that said, his favorite part of school is recess. He is constantly bursting with energy, so classrooms are not his natural habitat. Tommy mainly goes to school to socialize, but we are happy that he is learning as well.

Speaking of socializing, Tommy had a friend birthday party too. He loves his birthday, and starts discussing his party and invite lists months in advance (which is nice because it usually starts with "I want to invite the entire school!" and it takes time to narrow it down). I love that he wants to include everyone he knows, even though it is wildly impractical. This year we really hit the jack-pot when Tommy entered a drawing for a free birthday party and won! Thus he got to have his first (and ONLY) outside-of-our-house party. It was at a Karate studio, which was a big hit with the seven-year-old boy crowd. He had a great time, and so did Kenny, as you will observe in the videos. Nic was there too, but wild crowds are just not his style.

Happy Birthday Tommy! We are so proud of you and are blessed to be your parents!












Tuesday, 21 April 2015

Catching Up Pt. 1: Easter

Here are a few pictures from our Easter festivities - the egg hunt after church, our impromptu backyard picnic (because it was such a beautiful day that the kids begged to eat outside), and our neighborhood egg hunt in the park. It was a wonderful day!














Saturday, 4 April 2015

Cub Scout Fun

Tommy has really been loving cub scouting. It has been fun to try so many new things, and the while family has been enjoying the outings and pack meetings. Here are some pictures from the Pinewood Derby. He and Jeff crafted his car to look like Jeff's "cool car." It didn't win, but it sure was fun to watch!





We had an outing to a living history museum in our area to fulfill an advancement requirement, and we had a great time watching a blacksmith work, looking at old maps of our city, visiting a "trading post," and watching maple sap collection.