Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Hello from long ago!  Boy, what a lousy blogger I’ve been since baby #5 made her debut.  It feels like that was ages ago too.  I now have a darling 10-month old chunk crawling around my house, making cute sounds, and delighting in the attentions of her four older siblings.  She continues to be a good baby, pretty easy going and easy to please.  She’s still a baby, mind you, but a good one.  

The sun is shining beautifully and I was getting so excited to run in warmer weather and lighter days, but I think I dashed all those dreams today with one stupid move made in anger.  I think I broke my foot.  (Insert the biggest frowns face emoji you can imagine here.)  i’m too embarrassed to tell you what I was mad about; I find it embarrassing enough that I threw a fit and kicked a wall.  Boy, was I mad!  And it hurt so bad(ly)!!!  So now my dreams of chasing down a 7:30 pace half marathon are probably gone.  That is kind of sad for me, but what really bums me out is that I was finally back in shape and even starting to lose weight, and now I’ll get squishy and weak again.  So when you feel mad, just take a breather.  Let yourself de-escalate.  If you need to kick something, kick a pillow.  But if your situation is like mine, all that anger isn’t even worth the situation from which it arose.  Anger is probably my biggest failing.  Sigh.  Maybe “slow to anger” should be a mantra for me.  

Update: I am home from immediate care and I just have a sprain, we think. Hooray!!! All things considered, this is the best possible outcome. I have to wear a boot 24/7 for a week, then taper it down for the following two, and hopefully I can slowly get back into running activity thereafter. But I should be able to start swimming next week, so that's good. And maybe doing a stationary bike, though biking is not my fave. But for a week or two, I will take it. :)

Enough about me!  Onto the family.  My kids are cute and I like them a lot.  Big Sis is so insightful and thorough in her speech, sometimes it makes me laugh.  For example, we took her to the doctor yesterday and the doctor asked if she had had any problems with this thing before.  A simple “yes” or “no” would have sufficed, but not for Big Sis!  I can’t remember everything that she said, but the phrase “never in my life” was used in there, I know.  The three oldest did swim lessons over spring break and she moved up a level already; I'm so proud of her.

The kids have a different responsibility around the house every week and I see some benefits being reaped already, besides the obvious learn-how-to-do-this-thing. The four areas are food prep (everyone's favorite), house duty (cleaning), dishes/kitchen, and Baby A. Big Sis does not appear to be a naturally nurturing creature, but as she has had her weeks taking care of Baby A, I've seen her grow closer to her and more interested in her baby ways. It's cute.

Middle Sis started tumbling and trampoline (TnT) gymnastics in January and has already moved up a level. She is naturally very coordinated and strong and has a lot of energy, so gym is a good fit for her. I remember after picking her up from the first couple of classes she would say, "I wish gym were seven hours long!" It is so great to find a thing you love and run with it. She also moved up a level in swim lessons, fun!

Little Man is growing up. It was funny to update the blog pictures because my kids looked so little in those old ones. He loves preschool and playing with friends, so we arrange a lot of play dates for him so he can have some boy time. We need to get him a bigger bike because he can fit Middle Sis's bike, but Barbie is not the best look for him. He recently had a double ear infection so we are back to speaking loudly to him so he can hear. It truly is like talking to a person who is hard of hearing. It's funny and annoying.

Little Sis is almost three and becoming so precocious. She is so cute though, the way she plays and talks and runs around in only underwear for most of the day. She is also potty training and usually doing well, but sometimes not doing well. So it goes.

And baby is growing up and doing all those cute baby things she does. i love her big eyes and rolly arms and thighs and little lips, especially when she shapes them into an "o." My days are filled with cuteness and potty needs of three little people. This is both good and bad.

Enjoy some pics of the past ten months!

A beautiful sunrise before we sprang forward.

I need to get this girl her own leotards because she steals Middle Sis's.

Happy birthday, Daddy!
We get fun packages delivered to our house.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

I'm still here. How are you?

Ack!  I have so many things to blog about and so little time.  So many pictures to upload and update and so little time.  I need to tell you about Kids Day 2015, which was the best yet.  And Little Sis turned two and is frequently unpleasant to be around.  Such a shame.  But Baby Sis is sleeping through the night and has been for about two weeks now.  I can't think of anything I did differently with her than with the others.  I think she just came this way, which is WONDERFUL.  Sadly, her daytime naps are often extremely lame ones, lasting about half an hour.  Why bother falling asleep if that's all you're going to do?  Oh well.  I try to not complain because she sleeps through the night, but it is very difficult to get anything productive done when there is a very awake little baby that can not entertain herself.  This too shall pass.  That is a very comforting phrase for me at times. 

A stomach bug recently made its way through the family, and with a family of seven, that takes a long time to do.  Big Sis got it last night.  The girl was sitting on the toilet and threw up all over the place.  She wasn't quite awake, I don't think.  Vomit is a nasty thing.  She has the worst of it and was puking all night long.  I got maybe four hours of sleep in the last 24 hours, so I need to get to bed now.  

I hope to update the blog soon.  Our summer is flying by and we are enjoying it.  I'm not doing as much summer school work as I would have liked, but the girls are reading voraciously as well as playing a lot outside, so it's not a total loss, right?  Hope you're having a good summer too.  We have a 40% chance of rain on Saturday, so please, please pray that we will get rain.  We need any rain that we can get. 

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Do you ever learn your lesson?

Because I sure don't.  I told myself I would really take it easy the first week after baby was born.  HH had work off, my sister came to help, and I was still up and about, keeping my house in order, blah blah blah.  I felt good though, so why not?

The day that baby was born, I got a sore throat.  I could feel my swollen glands, but it didn't really bother me, so I kept truckin' along.  But now my throat hurts, like I don't even want to swallow in the evenings, it bothers me so much.  My sister thought it might be allergies, but sadly, I have a viral infection.  My rapid strep test came back negative, and all other signs point to a viral infection.  So I've had this sore throat for 10 days.  I can't remember the last time I was sick for this long.  I guess a body trying to recover from birth has a hard time kicking a sore throat out the window too.  Especially when caring for a newborn and four other children ages 8 and younger.  What the heck did I sign up for?  Am I crazy?!?  Yes!!!

Thankfully, I still feel mostly fine.  I have a bit of a headache, but I often get headaches when I'm tired, and with a newborn, I am frequently tired.  Like every time I sit/lay down, I fall asleep tired.  But I haven't had any fevers or aches and pains, so all in all I can't really complain.  My goal is to take it easy through the weekend (ugh) and be ready to go on Monday.  Because that is my plan, it probably won't work.  I just feel so badly for HH.  He has worked so much harder the past couple of months the more pregnant I've gotten, he took time off of work last week, and he stayed home today too.  He and I just want to get back to normal.  We have a very blessed life, though.  Little Sis is a great toddler who can occupy herself for much of the day.  The kids play well together, and we live in a beautiful little spot.  I just hope the littles don't get the sore throat.  Poor baby already has her first little cold.  It's so amazing that her body is fully functioning and so tiny.  Life is a miracle. 

Sunday, May 31, 2015

One week report

Hi there!  Can I tell you what a relief it is to not be pregnant?  Holy cow, my emotions were out of whack for quite awhile there.  I feel a lot like my old self; now I am very eager for my pooch to go away, to get running and exercising and strong again.  But slowly, slowly.  I pushed it too hard on Friday and felt it yesterday, so I've been trying to take it easy today because tomorrow, it's back to the daily grind + a newborn.  Fun! Fun!

She really is such a sweet baby, and I'm not too tired yet.  Last night was not a fabulous night of sleep, but the previous two nights she woke up only once to eat.  Awesome!  She is growing like a champ, weighing one extra ounce of her birth weight at just five days old, so this little one is literally growing before my eyes.  If you haven't seen her personally yet and want to, better get on over here soon before she's too big.  She won't have her newborn look for much longer.  I love newborns and their sweetness, but I'm glad that babyhood doesn't last for a very long time.  I'm ready to admire babies in others' arms. :)

She looks like Big Sis in this pic


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All the siblings love to hold her, but especially this handsome guy.  He is so sweet to her.

Look!  I survived my first week of life!

Sorry it's sideways.  They were having good times.

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Baby has arrived!!!

Oh, the joy of not being pregnant anymore!!!  And the sweet, sweet feeling of holding a tiny, precious newborn is one of the greatest blessings.  Her soft skin and sweet smell, her absolute dependence, our snuggling skin-to-skin, all of it is wonderful.  And I'm so happy to not be pregnant. :)

The labor went incredibly quickly; my body is designed to make great babies and have them very efficiently.  I  strongly suspected on Saturday morning that something would be happening soon, so we bided our time and stayed at home.  It was a bit of a boring day.  I let my middle-of-the-night friend know I may be calling her to come over to be with our kids, as well as our doula, and went to bed.

Sunday morning I woke up at two for probably the third time to use the bathroom that night.  I had thankfully slept some, but not well, as I was anticipating the inevitable.  I was having some contractions, but irregularly, so I timed them for an hour and waited for the intensity to pick up a bit before waking HH and calling my friend.  By three I knew it was go time, so I woke the necessary victims and off we went.

I think we arrived at the hospital around 3:45 or so.  Apparently I look too happy when I come into the hosptial; no one thinks I'm in labor, but the monitoring confirmed that I was.  Having had the last three babies naturally, I wanted to give an epidural another try; I wasn't feeling the natural love this time around, especially since the contractions were quite strong almost from the get-go.  I tried to make this clear, but it was a full hour before I was getting my IV fluids and other stuff going.  Only half an hour before baby was to pop out.  Not enough time.  It's probably enough time for normal people, but as I mentioned above, I have babies incredibly efficiently.

Attempting to have the epidural put in was torture.  The contractions were crashing down on me, and I had to sit in a very uncomfortable position for 15 minutes while he tried to put it in.  The cardinal rule for me while laboring is freedom of movement, so to have to sit in a confined position for so long at the end of my labor when the contractions were at their worst was not fun.   My bones are too close together or something that made putting in the epidural difficult.  The anesthesiologist was asking if I had scoliosis. Nope.  Finally my water broke and we gave up on the epidural.  Now just to push out the baby, which took about two minutes.

Adele Marie was born at 5:15 am and is perfect in every way.  Really, she is a stunning baby.  She eats and poops like a champ, so her chance of happiness in this life is good.  She weighed 7 lbs. 2 oz. and measured 19 1/4 inches long.  I love snuggling her, being in a quiet room just holding my precious one.  The siblings came to visit after church and were loving on her; it was adorable.  Little Man thinks she came out of my mouth.  We will stick with that for now.  They will be great little helpers at home, but I know that any time she cries they will tell me she's hungry.  They were already saying that today, and they did the same with Little Sis.  Hey, food helps me feel better.

Monday, May 18, 2015

Great losses

Last week our Middle Sis lost THREE teeth, two in one night and one two nights following.  Was that confusing? Suffice it to say, she lost three teeth in three days, so now she's rich from bounteous Tooth Fairy visits.  Actually, in an attempt to be a more "global" family, El Raton Perez visited her one of the nights.  No, we have no Hispanic/Lation/Spanish backgrounds.  We checked out a cute book with El Raton Perez and the Tooth Fairy once, and both have been welcomed into our home since.  I took a pic after she lost the two teeth in one night, but have yet to get a pic of her with three teeth gone.  She speaks with a lisp now, which is adorable.  Congrats Moo!

I'm guest posting at Cranial Hiccups on Wednesday, if you want to check it out.  I wrote a bit on dealing with picky eaters.  Nope, my kids are not fabulous eaters.  I just read a book on it once that I really liked.  :)  But as I've adopted some of the principles from the book, they have helped a lot.  So take a peek if you'd like.

We had the misfortune to get a bit of lice in our family.  Moo had it the worst, Kj and I had light cases, and thankfully HH and the little ones didn't get it at all.  If you get lice, I highly recommend Lice Knowing You.  It is awesome!!!!  It works so well and they teach you what to do, like washing everything in your house isn't necessary.  But our van looks so nice all vacuumed out, and I finally got around to washing the car seat covers. :)  Anyway, if you don't have Lice Knowing You in your area, I highly recommend ordering it online.  It's all natural, no nasty chemically stuff, and one package is enough to treat a family of five.  

Have a fabulous week!  Baby is due on Wednesday, which means she will probably come on Saturday or Sunday. Sunday would be better, so that means she'll probably come on Saturday. :)

This is my tummy, by the way:

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

The Day and LOTS of pics

I am technically full-term tomorrow, which means if the baby came, all would most likely be well.  I've heard of women having babies two and three weeks early, but sadly, I have never experienced that blessed state.  I call it blessed because the last four weeks of pregnancy are my least favorite due to many factors: being large and not in charge and never knowing when my body will kick into labor being the two most prominent ones. Only my second baby came on her due date; all the others were late, so from the beginning of pregnancy I tell myself that the guess date is at least four days later than the actual due date, but it doesn't really work.  I know what the "real" date is, and I also know full well that from tomorrow until four weeks later, the baby can come at any time. Thankfully it's easy to stay busy and the weeks do pass quickly.  It's not uncommon for people to comment on how active and busy I stay, but really, I can't just sit around being fat and uncomfortable and waiting for The Day to arrive.  But it would be really, really, really great if The Day was a week early rather than a week later.  One less week of pregnancy!  How cool would that be?!?!

In other happenings, but birth related as well, we have a cute family of squirrels residing beneath our storage shed.  They are cute and little and more light gray than their brownish parents.  Since we've moved in, I've noticed a squirrel who likes to pop his head up out of the bush outside our entryway.  I used to notice him only around 3 or 4 pm, but now I see him all day long.  I think that he's the dad, looking out from a higher plane to make sure that his little family is safe from danger.  I even saw him training his son (another assumption) to do the same.  It was darling.

Father squirrel watching out for his family.

Squirrel lovin', I guess.
We enjoy all sorts of wildlife out here, including coyotes.  Okay, maybe I don't enjoy those; in fact, they worry me a little bit.  I had two sightings in the past couple of weeks, one in the hazelnut grove and one along the field below our house, but this past Sunday there was one right in our yard, right in the middle of the day!  I don't ever let Little Sis outside on her own, but I need to be more diligent and vigilant now.  I don't want any of my children being a coyote snack. We've taught the kids to stay away from them and come into the house.  Normally I would think that coyotes would stay away from people, but when one is so bold to come into our (unfenced) yard in the middle of the day, I hesitate in that thought.

If you live in the West, I'm sure your spring has spring a month or two early this year.  We have had TWO days of 80 degree weather in April.  April, people!!!  The past two years we had a couple of days of 80 in May, and the strawberries were a month early.  Will they be two months early this year?  I need to stop having babies during strawberry season.  It makes jam-making difficult. :)  

Cooling off at a splash park on a hot day.

We went to grandparent land for Easter, which was fun.  HH's brother and his family were there for a day that we were there, so it was fun to be with all of HH's family.  Goombaw's friend hosted the biggest egg hunt ever.  There were some 450 eggs hidden; each kid got 40-50 eggs.  It was wild.


Sorry that Middle Sis isn't shown.  Her pic wouldn't upload for some reason.  But she loved the golden egg she found.

I recently took the kids to a local tulip festival, which is fun, but not so exciting that I go every year.  Every other year seems to do it for me.  Maybe it's because I take the kids by myself and it's a big chore to do that.

The girls pretending to be famous people.
My sister and her family brought their ATVs for a fun morning.  Good thing we have an acre and a poor lawn so we didn't mind riding around on it.  The kids loved it!  I think one ATV had four or five kids on it at one point.  Little Sis was so funny to watch riding around.  Her face was completely impassive, but she kept wanting to get back on, so she was obviously enjoying herself.

Enjoy this picture of our tree, Blossomer, so named by Big Sis.  It's pink blossoms were so fun to enjoy.  We also have two lilac bushes, hooray!!!  I brought some flowers into the house and it smelled so good.  We are looking forward to trimming trees and bushes this fall or next spring so everything can look a little prettier and grow a bit better.

Welcome May!  Your weather has been here a month already. I hope you don't give us too warm of weather.