As you come to him, the living Stone--rejected by men but chosen by God and precious to him--you also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. 1 Peter 2: 4-5

Sunday, August 30, 2009

cheer, a few tears, and senior year...

Maddy had her first game as a middle school cheerleader this Saturday night. Hannah, Sarah, and I set out to watch her cheer, and Daryl stayed home with Charlotte.

What is a football game without the concession stand??? Sarah and Hannah enjoyed push-pops!

Here's Hannah's original outift...decked out in her Charger wear. Let's just say we had to change clothes half way through the game. Sigh.
Getting ready for the team to run through!

It's Kick-off time....

During the half-time show...

This evening, I went to pick up the big kids from church and was greeted upon my return by a mostly naked Hannah, running down the driveway, yelling, "I spilled it all over the floor!" I didn't think much of it, as we routinely spill things all over the floor in this house, and usually all it takes is a towel to clean it up. Until I really looked at her....and saw...fingernail polish ALL OVER HER BODY!

And the carpet. It appears that along with the pencils, baby dolls, paper, and various other toys in the Dora backpack was a bottle of fingernail polish. (There was also a piece of Daryl's catheter --not a gross part, but still...ewww)

And just when I thought dealing with a busy preschooler and newborn all at once was quite enough, Daryl hands me a package and says, "Did you see Josh's senior pictures?" Oh. my. My heart. My baby boy. A senior. Of course I know he is a senior, but these pictures just took my breath away. He looks so grown up, such a man, such a senior.

It may just be harder to adjust to having a senior than it is to having a newborn. She is coming into this world, assimilating herself into our world. He is getting ready to leave our world and go out into the "real" world. They are both equally expensive...formula and diapers every week vs. the cost of senior pictures, senior ads in the year book, class rings, etc. Both her arriving and him graduating stir such deep deep emotions, such love, and just a bit of anxiety. My first baby and my last baby...each with a firm grasp on a piece of my heart.
It really does seem like not so long ago that I brought him home from the tiny like Charlotte, no hair like Charlotte, such a good baby. And although I know that it is my job as a parent to raise him up to this give him roots and wings, my heart, so full with love, breaks just a little bit every time I think of it!

Saturday, August 29, 2009

This week in pictures...

Not a whole lot to report on this week, as I've been at home snuggling with the wee ones and not out and about at our usual school activities. In general, though, we've been adjusting. Adjusting to life with a newborn. Adjusting to not going to work every day. Adjusting to functioning on very little sleep!
And here is Hannah, adjusting to sharing her Daddy.

And Daryl, now that he is feeling better, getting used to feeding baby Charlotte, while....
serenaded by Hannah. I believe it was Old McDonald!

Hannah Potato Head! Grandma brought Charlotte a rubber ducky to go in her tub to tell if the water was too hot. She brought Hannah Mr. Potato Head. Hannah confiscated both gifts...and something tells me she doesn't quite get the Mr. Potato Head concept!

Grandma, Kathleen, and Uncle Chip came for a visit on Friday, but for some reason, I got no pictures of Aunt Kathleen (who looks fabulous by the way...Kath--you've inspired me!) But I did get Charlotte and Grandma

And Uncle Chip...who really did not want to hold Charlotte...because she is too small.

Hannah has been playing "school" all week, filling up her backpack with all sorts of stuff from around the house, and then flipping it over her head to get it on her back correctly. She says she is going to "ballet school." That's Josh in the background. He got in last night about 11:45 from the football game and had to be out of the house this morning at 4:45 am for a cross country meet (where he shaved off another minute and a half!) I think he is attempting to nap, while blocking out the chaos of our home with his pillow!

And here is Sarah, admiring her baby sister. Charlotte spends very little time not being held and admired by someone. Daryl's pleas of "We have to stop holding her so much" fell on deaf ears. They even get her up to watch her while she sleeps!

My only finger sucker. I tried to get the big kids to suck their thumbs instead of their beloved pacifiers, to no avail. I tried to get Hannah to suck ANYTHING to make her quiet, to no avail. This one finds her fingers daily all by herself. Isn't she just beautiful?!

And to think I have always not enjoyed the newborn stage. I don't know if it is because I know she is my last, or because she is really so very easy, but I am loving every minute of it!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009


How blessed I am feeling today! We have wonderful friends and family who have prayed us through this pregnancy, brought us enough food for at least a week so I don't have to cook or shop, and share in our excitement at welcoming Charlotte into our family.

I have a happy, healthy, mellow (for now) sweet baby girl
I have my sweet sweet Maddy, who loves the Lord and isn't afraid to sing praises to Him at chapel time. Sorry for the poor photo quality...the camera was on the wrong setting and I forgot to take the good one. Maddy is on the right, and she and her friends sang verses of the old hymn "I Surrender All." So beautiful.

I have my sweet sweet Sarah, who is such a little momma and has taken such good care of Hannah, me, and Charlotte during these past few days. She is such a nurturing spirit and will be such a good momma some day. She makes me so proud to be her mom!

I have this amazing boy--who is no longer a boy, but growing into a man, longing for the heart of God. He is an awesome boyfriend, friend, son, leader, and as much as he hates to admit it or show it, brother.

And I have this sweet second "first" baby, who is trying so hard to be a big sister and working on not being jealous. Sometimes she wins that battle, sometimes not so much, and I just want to be able to give her everything she needs and still take care of the baby.

And how could I forget this dear sweet hubby, who pulled himself out of kidney stone horror to be a cheerful, supportive labor coach, a hand to hold, and held down the fort at home as well.
God is so good!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Monday, August 24, 2009

What a weekend!

I have lots of pictures of our busy weekend, but for some reason, I can't seem to upload them. Grrrrrr......

It started on Friday afternoon, with Daryl getting his "procedure" done to remove his kidney stones...which failed miserably. Then Saturday, as he lay around the house being miserable, I went to grocery store to stock up--the plan was to spend Sunday making a bunch of freezer meals, so that the next few weeks would be easier for me. We went to the park with Hannah, and we got Frosty's on the way home. Then later on Saturday, drove to Locust Grove to watch Josh compete in a cross country meet.

All day on Saturday, I had contractions, but really not regular.

Which is why on Sunday, when I got up to go the bathroom at 4 am and my water broke, I was surprised. Surprised even Daryl, who had taken a pain pill just 2 hours before assured by my snoring that Charlotte was still a while away.

Got to the hospital around 4:30, got checked, and wouldn't you know it....1 cm. I was disappointed, and then horrified when the midwife told me that I needed pitocin and needed to wait until I was uncomfortable until I got my epidural. Uncomfortable soon started and turned into horrendous, horrendous, unbearable pain. Over and over, on top of each other...2 minutes long. I guess that she considered that uncomfortable, and finally gave me the most wonderful invention ever...the epidural. (Kristin...even that you want to do this...major major major kudos...You and the Chinese women who squat in the rice fields have my utmost respect and awe).

After the epidural, she checked me agian and I was totally ready to push. I think, probably, that I was getting close anyways when the anesthesiologist came. We waited about half an hour and then in 1 1/2 pushes, she was here! When Hannah was born, I was happy...I was in awe...I was in love already. This time, it took my breath away and made me giggle and cry at the same time. She was just so fast and so tiny, compared to Hannah, and looked like none of my other kids.

So we are home, after a very unrestful night at the hospital, and very glad to be here. I'm exhausted to the point of being dizzy at times...probably from getting up at 4 to have a baby and then maybe 2 hours of sleep...but loving it, and her.

So much for a Sunday filled with cooking, huh?

Hopefully, pictures posted later!!!

Friday, August 21, 2009

Everything is ready....

car seat came today...
new camera came yesterday... (blame Daryl and the pain pills)
clothes, etc. washed and put away
bag packed for the hospital
sub plans made

now if it weren't for these pesky kidney stones, we'd be set. We thought it would be taken care of today, when the dr. attempted to go in and blast it. last time, they were unable to do so, and Daryl is left with the kidney stones, a catheter, a stint, and supreme disappointment.

so...we hope she waits. (OK...I seriously want her to NOW...but really would like it to be a joyful event for Daryl). With his next appointments being Monday and Wednesday of next week, and the mention of going in again August 28 is seeming more and more like a pipe dream than anything else.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Such Joy

Who said that you had to spend a lot of money to have a good time?

We arrived at KayKay's house to pick up Hannah, and were regailed (sp?) with tales of how they went to the mall and Hannah so wanted to ride the carousel, but Kay couldn't ride it with her because she gets severe motion sickness. And somehow, by the time we got out of there, we were taking her to the "horsies" tonight. Hmmmmm...

Well, with the big kids gone to church tonight, Daryl and I decided to take her for a night out. Here she is all ready for her big night out--look at that smile!

With Daryl, getting their tokens...

Horse picked out and ready to go!

Right after getting off...the ones that I took while she going around turned out so dark and blurry!

Saying thank you to the carousel worker...

And to top it off, a frosty from Wendy's...a substitute for her beloved chocolate ice cream!!! Gotta love that beautiful smile! Now for not so joyful news...while Daryl is feeling better--obviously the stone has stopped moving, he is scheduled for a procedure on Monday afternoon where they will go up and get it. And yes, it is as bad as that sounds! Daryl is convinced he can pass it on his own before then and is in complete and total denial that this will happen. We will see!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Last Night..

Place: our bedroom
Time: midnight or so

pain, moaning, hot baths, tossing and turning in discomfort, asking for pain meds...

and wasn't me. Daryl has kidney stones. What started out as "My back hurts a little" turned into throwing up and soaking in the tub not two hours later. My goodness...a glimpse into things to come for me, except that after twelve hours max (probably) I'll have a sweet little bundle of joy (who will not be sceaming at the top of her you hear me?) and after more than 12 hours, Daryl still has kidney stones.

Our prayer is, of course, that Daryl pass them and feel better, but also that he do so before Charlotte makes her arrival. I went to the dr. yesterday and am 1/2 cm dilated, very soft, and thinning...but probably due to the fact that this is my fifth and not that she will arrive any time soon. My midwife did say she could come any time now...and they wouldn't stop it. Since being checked yesterday, I have definitely felt her drop, as I now cannot walk without looking and feeling like a bowling ball is about to fall out from between my legs. That during labor feeling when you can't move without pain--without the steady contractions. Contractions all day long, but with no pattern.

So' hopefully, prayerfully, and as much as I hate to say it...we hope she stays put until Daryl has recovered, since all of my children have declared that there is NO WAY they were stepping foot into the delivery room (except for Hannah who said she would sit on my tummy and teach her baby sister how to play), and I doubt they would let Daryl in only to lay on the floor, writhe, and vomit.

Saturday, August 15, 2009


I'm not a big foot fan...never have...but here's a picture of my lovely foot, complete with ankles, back in June.
And here are my poor feet.... after being propped up for 4 hours.
And then proof that Hannah may be just a bit jealous already. We put in the top part of the pack and play...the part that makes it ideal for a newborn, because it lifts the pad up so the baby is easier to reach. I thought for sure that when we added that part, she would stay away. Not exactly what happened!

Friday, August 14, 2009


My feet...or what used to be my feet...are HUGE. I can not wear any shoes except for my son's size 10 flip flops. I can not bend my legs at the ankle. I have gained 22 pounds in the last month, and if I do say so is all in my legs and feet. I cannot lift my legs by myself.

I am past looking anything even close to attractive. Gone is the cute pregnant woman. Here is the woman whose belly hangs out of her "go to" big shirts. The woman who has one pair of pants that still fit. The woman who has very few dresses left either because the enormity of her belly has made them all too short, and thereby showing off her newly, simply lovely swollen, fat, ugly knees. The woman who sweats....all. the. time.

I am past being able to do what I want to with Hannah. I want to sit on the floor and play with her. But I can't get down, and if I do, can't get up. Plus, how do you play with a three year old when you have to be elevating your feet???? I want to be able to run around with her. yet, the closest I am to a run is a very slow waddle. And here I sit wanting to spend these last few weeks with her as my only baby...and I can't. (and I am crying...something I do quite often lately)

I want to be excited...and most of the time I am. But then I am scared and nervous. Nervous how this will affect our family. Nervous about having to start all over again. Nervous about this one being colicky. Nervous about how it will affect Hannah. Am I ready to give up that little bit of independence I have now? Am I too old to do this again? How in the world am I going to do this again???? And yes...I do realize its a little too late to be thinking this way!

I know I will love her--I already do. I know we will adjust--the senior will probably be a bigger adjustment for us. It's just the enormity of it all...and a bit overwhelming at the moment. Give me a good night's sleep, some chocolate (heck, if I am going to gain over a pound a day, might as well eat!), and a good mood swing...and I'll be just fine. :)

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Getting ready...finally...

How do you go about nesting if you don't have a nursery and it is apparent that you will not have one any time soon????

You get out the pack n' play and put it in the living room so Hannah and the dogs can get used to it being there. Hannah actually squealed when she saw it, pronounced it just like the one that she slept in at Grandma's house, and wanted in immediately. Then, for the next 30 minutes, climbed in and out with various toys. It's still missing the part for the top--that makes it more suitable for a newborn (higher off the ground and a changing table attached) so I guess I'll let her have her fun now. (And it's better than going around with a paci in her mouth, which is what she did for an entire evening--she never took a paci as a hard as I tried.)

You paint the dresser and rocking chair. The dresser, I believe, was in my brother's room when he was a baby, and has been through many transformations over the years. We have sweet pink knobs to put on once it's dry, and then to get it together and her clothes in. It'll be in our room, but that's ok! And then you go and buy some of that sweet baby smelling detergent and wash all of her clothes, blankets, etc. And even though I know that it's no better than regular detergent...I love the new baby smell. to work on the ubiquitous lesson plans....

Saturday, August 8, 2009

She has a name...

Charlotte Elaine
Whew! What a week it has been! The first week back is always hectic, but it seems more so, as Daryl had lots of meetings (due to teachers being furloughed during pre-planning...they had to meet some time) and I had lots of meetings (because...well...I don't know...I think we just like meeting at my school!)and the kids had lots to do after school. I cam home totally and completely exhausted, swollen, and ready for bed each and every day. So I didn't even think about taking pictures (OK, OK, I couldn't find my camera).

So, here are a few highlights, and lowlights, of our week!

First a MAJOR MAJOR MAJOR highlight....My brand new dishwasher...that really washes dishes!!! For months we have been having to hand wash our dishes before putting them in the dishwasher where they would get anywhere from 5-13 minutes of washing before it would stop, and depending on whose dish night it was, the dishes came out anywhere from pretty clean to "oh my goodness what is that chunk stuck to the plate?" clean. On Tuesday, though, I came home to a new dishwasher that my wonderful husband installed while I was conducting first grade orientation. Bless his heart, I didn't even notice until I got ready to go to bed, despite Hannah greeting me with "We have a surprise for you...dishes!" and when I didn't notice, she cried. (And may I mention that said wonderful husband did put his clothes in the hamper for the rest of the week!!! Love you!)

The car. Sigh. We had to do some major readjusting to our schedules to get everyone picked up from practices and the babysitter, get me to and from my doctor's appointment, get tags and get it picked up on Monday, but we did it, and Josh declared..."It has never driven this well!" And someone from church did it for only $350. We were encouraged. We were excited. We were relieved. And then three days later, it started dying again. And last night, it died three times. Why it only happens when Josh is driving it, we will never know. The person who fixed it drove it for an hour with no problems before getting it back to us. Again. Sigh.

But on to happier things...last Sunday, Daryl's family got together and gave us a shower. I hadn't wanted one...I felt bad because everyone had been so good to us when Hannah was born...we got so much and had to spend so very little out of pocket, and then got rid of most of it. Plus, I know...same sex baby...second's just not politically correct. They did it anyways, and it was so nice and we got so much nice stuff. Here's a picture of it all...Sarah arranged it all...and now we have lovely piles of baby stuff in our living room AND in our bedroom. Can I tell you that I am beginning to panic just a little bit? We cannot live off of piles...but have nowhere to put it. Hopefully Sarah and I will get the dresser finished today and will at least have somewhere to put clothes, blankets, etc.

Yes, back to work. Back to reality. Back to the "new and improved" lesson plan form that our school is now using. SEVEN pages for one week. Complete with Georgia standard numbers, best practices codes, essential questions, alternative lesson plans for advanced and slower learners, and Biblical Worldview thoughts. Oy-vey.

Sleepy kids (who sometimes can be just a little bit grouchy), sleepy momma, sleepy daddy.

The only one who isn't sleepy, it seems, is Hannah...who wouldn't even slow down enough for me to take a picture this morning! I've seen way too much of ELCA and way too little of Hannah this week. I know she loves Kay, that Kay loves her, and that she is so much more entertained and stimulated when she is there, but I do miss her so much. And then the mommy guilt kicks in and I think about how much less of my she will get when baby noname (soon to be named, by the way. We are thisclose)gets here.

By my calculations...2 weeks, 6 days to go! And as a warning...if August 28th comes and goes with nary a contraction, I will be just a wee bit disappointed...and very grumpy!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Quiz time!!!!

1. What do you do when it is 15 minutes before your sleep deprived mother has to get up, yet you need to get a towel to take a shower?

a. Wait until she is up and quickly slip in the bathroom to get it.
b. Open the door quietly and tip toe in, grabbing a towel in the dark, and tip toe out.
c. Open the door with the light on in the hall, stick your face in your mother's face, and tell her you are going to get a towel so you can take a shower.

2. What is the purpose of a big girl bed?

a. A place to sit to do puppet shows with your soon to be baby sister's bath mitt.
b. A place to pile stuffed animals (otherwise known as babies)and to pour out your lacing beads.
c. A place to fall asleep at 9:00 and fool your mother into thinking she might actually get to sleep all night.

3. What is the purpose of a clothes hamper?

a. Purely decorative. Haven't you heard that white plastic is all the rage? And especially when it is surrounded by dirty clothes!
b. A dirty trick played by your mother/wife to try to trip you up as you make those midnight trips to the restroom.
c.'s an's a place to put your dirty clothes, so your mother/wife, who is hugely pregnant doesn't have to bend over to pick up the clothes and therefore risk the humiliation and pain of being stuck in that position until childbirth.

And you say...HORMONES?????? Add to this 18 6 year olds who clearly think that school is their social playground instead of a place to learn, feet the size of watermelons, and the first of 5--count them--5 meetings this week and I am pretty much toast.

Monday, August 3, 2009

First Full Day of School

# of boys in my class- 11
# of girls in my clss - 6 (soon to be 7)
# of times I had to say, "Boys and girls, this is a no talking time." - 10
# of times they actually listened - 1
# of times someone asked me when snack was - 17
# of people who had to put their name on the board - 3
# of minutes it took to take them to the restroom - 15 (because the boys can't go in with each other)
# of stories read today (the only time they are quiet) - 5
# of hours on my feet - 8

What I have to show for it

Saturday, August 1, 2009

It's noon on a Saturday....

And already I have....

washed, dried, folded and put away 5 loads of laundry
scrubbed the baseboards in the kitchen
scrubbed the kitchen floors by hand
swept and mopped all the floors
scrubbed the steps
cleaned the kitchen
supervised the cleaning of the living room
fed Hannah two meals
tackled the sock basket
emptied the trash
cleaned up the bathroom
did two loads of dishes
played Dora cards with Hannah for an hour.

Can you say....nesting?

And I think that I have must have been remiss in my domestic responsibilities lately. Not only was the house...GROSS, but Maddy asked me, "Is someone coming over?"