27 February 2013

Our Lil’ A

It’s a girl!

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With the support of my amazing husband and the assistance of my midwives I am so happy to announce that I gave birth to our second daughter late last week! We have another daughter! 8 pounds, 11 ounces... just in between the weights of her big siblings.

She thankfully came a couple days early, which we were very happy about.  Hard labor only lasted a few hours and she and I had no complications at all. We’re quite a team, she and I. We’ve been through a lot together in the past nine months, good and bad, and she is a strong little lady. We chose one of her middle names to reflect that and her ear-piercingly loud cry also proves the strength she has within! What about the sweet little newborn cry I was expecting? Oh my.

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Aaaanyway, I am so in love.

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So is big brother.

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And so is big sister.

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And let me just say that my husband is incredible. He takes amazing care of all of us and my children are more than blessed to have him as their Daddy…

And now we are a family of five. Glory!

21 February 2013

Johannesburg

I know it’s been forever since I blogged about our trip to South Africa. It was mooooonths ago now and I never intended for it to take so long for me to ‘document’ it on this blog. But alas, life has changed a bit recently and there hasn’t been much time to work on it.  But now I’m back at it. For today at least. I’m near the end and I’ve got to finish what I started!

So let’s pick up…

After a week in southern South Africa we flew up to Johannesburg for our second week. We were heading there to visit a friend of Mike’s from 12 years ago, and his wife and family.

This week was more low-key. We hung around, took naps, and the  kids played and played and played with their three new friends around the house.

They even did some swimming.

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And got a bit cold. Which was no big surprise. There was NO WAY Mike or I was getting in that pool with them…

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It was only 71 degrees! Brrrrr. That is seriously cold for swimming weather. Mike is the cold-water-baby of the family and he refuses to swim if the temperature is much less than 100. I’m not kidding.

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But there was also rain. Lovely, refreshing rain!

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There was train play.

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Rabbits. (And a dog, a cat, chickens and a rooster!)

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Our sweet little guest room out back.

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Avocados falling from overhead.

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So many avocados. It was like a dream.

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My kids loved this funky tire swing.

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And climbing the ladder to this tree…

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… to jump onto the trampoline.

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Girlie became addicted to yogurt cups.

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And they had such fun with their new friends!

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It was an incredibly relaxing week. More South Africa to come…

19 February 2013

Quote of the Day

“I made a tard (card) for you but I don’t want to tell you betause it is a secwet. But when you go to bed you can find it.”

-my girlie talking to her Daddy

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I love it. I love them.

18 February 2013

A Place For Baby

We have moved! And our new apartment is still a work in progress, but it is really coming along and we are so pleased. And blessed. And thankful. And blown away by how hard my parents are working to help make it happen. Cause frankly I am not doing much these days.

Anyway, once our room was ready, I wasted no time in getting a place set up for baby. So here it is!

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This is my first time ever having a real changing table. It’s a small thing, but it’s kinda fun for me.

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And the bassinet was given to us. Glory! 

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We are ready now. Well, as ready as one can ever be. Baby is due in five days… but now would be just fine with me. C’mon baby! We wanna meet you!!!

14 February 2013

A Valentine

Grammi and Poppi are here and it’s great. We are getting settled in our new home and we couldn’t do it without them. They took some time yesterday morning to do some projects with the kids and we came home to valentines from our little sweeties!

Sweet N made this one for me (with some help?) and when I asked her what it said, she very seriously and very carefully answered “I love you and you are my sweetest little girl.”

Ha! I love it. And she called me little. Little! Ha!

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And while I’m actually blogging at the moment… here’s a photo of me and my littlest valentines taken a couple weeks ago. (This was the home we were house-sitting). Bedtime stories….

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05 February 2013

Child Incubation

Since it’s Tuesday (Wow! I know the day of the week, please be impressed.) and because it’s 5:40 and I’ve been awake since 5, I thought I’d write to give you an update on this ‘ere child incubation I been doin’.

1. Thought about it? Ever thought about child incubation, like really? Like I have very small human being enclosed inside my own body, yet he/she is his/her own person and moves around like a little independent alien? Yeah…. it’s all very strange if you think about it for very long. Beautiful and strange. Did U2 write a song by that title? Ha!

2. 2.5. I have about two and a half weeks to go if this baby decides to be born around his/her due date. Yikes! (As if anyone can ever really predict the arrival of a baby.) The baby itself seems to be growing increasingly discontent with the size of his/her quarters. I’ve had lil’ feeties up in my ribs for the first time this week.

3. Insomina. Obviously (hello 5am), I have reached the stage where sleep is fleeting. I can walk around exhausted all day and lay down at night and just laaaaaaay there for hours. I can have on my eye mask and have my ear plugs in and Mikey can be rubbing my back (he’s a good man, eh?) and I can still lay there forever and not sleep. Ugh. I am comfortable when I lay down, however, which I realize isn’t always the case with nine month pregnant women, so for that I am thankful (see number 5).  Aaaaanyway, once I’m asleep it’s great, until I wake up. But once I wake up for any sort of  reason… it’s really hard to get BACK to sleep. I wonder why it gets so hard when we (speaking out for pregnant women around the world) need it most?

4. The Growling Bear. Even if I eat a good sized proteiny snack just before I (attempt) to lay down to sleep (along with a big chug of my heartburn medicine, which tastes like a delicious vanilla shake, delightfully enough), I almost always wake up at 4 or 5 with a growling bear in my stomach, as well as the child in my womb! It’s a party in here, lemmetellya.  I wake up soooooooooo hungry my stomach sounds like a monster. And the midwife says if I’m hungry then the baby is hungry, so I better eat, right? Right. I’ve taken to putting another proteiny snack by the side of the bed in hopes I can shove it in my mouth in the middle of the night, quiet the bear and go back to sleep. Obviously this morning, the second part of that failed, and here I am blogging before 6am.

5. PPF. My friend taught me the term ‘Pregnancy Pillow Fortress’. Oh yes, I can relate. My PPF has been four pillows for a very long time. This week it’s grown to five. Two under my head (elevated to attempt to alleviate previously mentioned heartburn), two on my left side and one on my right.  It’s working. I can get quite comfortable, aside from the occasional Restless Legs Syndrome.  Think I’ll make it to a PPF of six before we meet this baby?

6. Names. The kids have ideas for names for this child. Some of their most notable(?) are Baby-in-the-Belly, Dora, Buzz Lightyear and “Plincess” (Princess). And those were submitted even BEFORE we entered the land of marketing and television.  Oh my word. The one name of theirs that has stuck around for the entire pregnancy is “Scooter”.  I think my daughter actually thinks that is what we are naming the baby, which she is 150 percent convinced, by the way, is  ‘dirl’ (girl) baby. If only Mike and I could be as decisive about names as the kids are…

7. Did I ever tell you that this baby’s gender is a surprise? Um, you probably figured it out by now. I meant to blog about it, but I meant to do lots of things like give birth in Africa and continue to run a preschool and those things never panned out, so just add that post about our baby’s surprise gender to the list of lost dreams (sounds so depressing, but I suppose it’s true). But yes… we have a boy and a girl already and I like to try new things, so I thought it’d be fun to know what it’s like to be surprised by the gender.  So here we are, nine months pregnant, not knowing if baby is gonna wear the little pink outfit I bought or the little blue one! 

8. I got asked this week if I’m carrying triplets. Really guy?! I am not THAT big!

9. Costco. I might or might not have gone to Costco with my Mom and stood in the main aisle eating samples while I sent her running up and down the side aisles looking for things. Okay, I did it, I admit!!! She’s wonderful. Can I just say that that store is big to begin with. It’s about twelve times BIGGER when you’re nine months pregnant.  Soon we’ll attempt IKEA. Wish us (her?!) luck, ha!

In other general life news, ummmmm… things are pretty much madness. My parents came out from Ohio which is amazing! And we have a long-term home, which is also amazing. We are doing some improvements to it, however, so it’s not ready to move into until the weekend probably. My head is full of paint colors and fabric choices and closet door options(?) and other house details I didn’t expect t be making at this point. Normally I would love it, but at this stage it can be a bit overwhelming. Mom and Dad are such a big help and we could never do it as quickly as it ‘needs’ to be done without them. Never. In the meantime we are house-sitting down the hall from our new apartment, which is a PERFECT arrangement that I am forever thankful for.

So, life is cluttered and crazy and I am more disorganized than maybe ever and my brain is majority mush and sometimes I am only holding on by an emotional thread.  Have I not even been out of Africa for a month? In some ways I don’t like how quickly the change has had to come and in some ways it’s probably good that it’s not going to drag out for months and months and months cause the ‘in-between’ can be the hardest and we certainly didn’t have much room for ‘in-between’ time this go-around. It’s just that we’ve had so little time to process what has become our of our lives in the past four weeks because we had to become immediately so focused on the future, you know? The whole thing is just so strange.

In any case, if I can back up and get a bigger picture, I certainly know it’s all going to be fine in the end. I might be welcoming my baby home amongst paintbrushes and unpacked boxes and not knowing where in the world I put that one thing I need, but it’ll be fine. We’re healthy and so blessed and soon I’ll have a delicious baby in my arms. And perseverance through challenges builds character. And really, I suppose I want that more than the perfect birth/easy life scenario in the end. It doesn’t usually feel like it and I might not be acting like it, but I suppose it’s true…

So there you have it. My child incubation/life update. Take it or leave it.

And good morning.

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