Monday, May 23, 2011

Addy @ Three Months

Addy Kay, you are three months old!

You are wearing green edge infant prefolds. Small covers, sometimes mediums if I have not washed! Mainly 3-6 month clothes. You were a size 2 shoe. You are rolling from belly to back and back to belly with no problem, you can also get up on your knees for a short time. I believe you weigh about 14 pounds, that's an estimate from our bathroom scales. Your legs have definitely filled out!
Your hair is beginning to thin and so is Momma's! You are sleeping in YOUR own crib...ALL NIGHT LONG! Wow, didn't even know that was possible! I have a lot of theories on why you can do this but none of your other siblings did. 1)Maybe you are bigger and can go longer without eating. 2)You weren't held 24-7 (it breaks my heart thinking about it) because of your NICU stay so you learned to self-soothe. 3) I didn't stress about you sleeping through the night and didn't try to put you in your own crib. No matter what the reason, it has been such a blessing. Even when you slept in our bed, I slept pretty well, or so I thought. The first night you slept in the crib, I woke up at 5:30 and felt WONDERFUL, after only 4 hours of sleep. So obviously I wasn't sleeping as sound as I thought. Your sister is sleeping in her toddler bed, and after 5 years of always having a baby in our bed, we realized we really don't NEED a king size bed!
I think you look like Austen's baby pictures, although I see a lot of Aiden and Ava in certain expressions.
You have made your first trip to the zoo. You celebrated your first Easter. You have attended three birthday parties, your sister's, Madisyn's and Bailee's. You helped me celebrate my first Mother's Day as a mommy to four. You attended Emily's high school graduation, which was an experience in itself (tornado and all)! You continue to be a blessing to our family, we cannot imagine our lives without you! We love you!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Emily's Graduation

Ms. Emily is very special to us. She is the granddaughter of some dear friends of ours. We have known her for a while, but for almost a year now she has been an important part of our lives. She is very sweet, kind and wonderful with our kids. She babysits for us occasionally, and without her help we would never have been able to attend our Bradley classes. The kids are in love with her and I consider her to be a dear friend. Here are some pics from her graduation and party.
Class of 2011
Addy was really fussy and I was not able to get many pics at the ceremony. Addy was wanting to fall asleep and every time she would close her eyes, they would announce another name and she would startle and wake up. I felt so sorry for her, but it was actually pretty comical because it happened 70+ times and she never got used to it!
 The kids helping Ms. Emily open her gifts.
(Aiden did attend the party, he was just too busy playing ping pong to have his picture made.)

Her graduation was definitely an experience we will never forget! Jake had to work, so I took the kiddos by myself. It had been a stressful day, but we were not going to miss it. We arrived early  because I was unsure of where we were going. It had been raining off and on, and we had to park a pretty good distance away. Thankfully, Gary and Ann pulled in the parking lot not too long before us and helped us make the  long walk.
 Ava and Ms. Emily

We walked up tons of stairs, into the fieldhouse and found a good seat! We are never early so this was a plus for us! Right before the ceremony started, they announced a tornado was headed for us. We had to evacuate to their storm shelter, which was back down the stairs and a little way from the fieldhouse.
 I'm pretty sure Austen was asking for more fruit salad!
Once we finally made it in the storm shelter, it was extremely hot. Too many people + too little space = lots of heat! The storm actually died out before it reached us, and we were all herded back up the stairs to the fieldhouse. However, our good seat was gone! I told Gary and Ann that is exactly why I don't kill myself trying to be somewhere on time! Just kidding, I really do kill myself trying to get there, it just never happens! 
Ann and Addy, so thankful she was able to carry Ava that night with all of the walking, otherwise we would have gave up and went home.

Anyway, the ceremony turned out fine and we got to relax at her party. The kids had a really good time and we all ate way too much. The only thing missing was Daddy. We love you and our proud of you Ms. Emily!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

One Year Ago...

I was holding this sweet baby girl in my arms as she feel asleep.

A few minutes later, I was holding her hand in the emergency room, praying for her life. We weren't sure what was happening or why. She was seizing, they couldn't get it stopped and we didn't know if she would be the same again. An hour later, she wasn't actively seizing but she was unresponsive and on a breathing machine from all the medications. We were transported to Children's Hospital and we continued to pray for her recovery.

God answered our prayers and she is very happy and healthy today. It took a week to get back to normal, but we have not had any problems since that awful day.

It is amazing how your perspective changes when you go through difficult trials. Just the day before this incident, I was complaining about how hard it was to be a Mom of three small kiddos. The next day, I was shown the alternative and I was praying that God would allow me to continue to be her mother and not take her to be with Him. I have always been thankful, but this incident completely changed my life. I now realize what is most important. The house can be dirty and laundry can pile up, because it will all still be there in 20 years. My kids are just temporary, just on loan to me and in 20 years, this season of life will be gone. This trial taught me that tomorrow is uncertain, there are no guarantees and I want to show my children everyday how thankful I am to have them. I am not sure why God has blessed me with a wonderful family, and I definitely do not feel worthy, but I am so thankful to have this opportunity. I pray that I can continue to be their Mom for as long as He allows, and that I can do this in a way that is pleasing to Him.  I am no longer a nurse, just a Mommy and wife. It is the most important and humbling job out there. The benefits are overwhelming and the rewards are out of this world. When I have a hard day, I just remember how fragile life is, and look at all the blessings in my life.
Lo, children are an heritage of the Lord: and the fruit of the womb is his reward. Psalm 127:3

Monday, May 16, 2011

Bed Time Routine

One day I will forget these precious every day moments. These are some random pics from our night time routine.
These sisters love each other so much! Ava is wearing her "piggies" which are at least two sizes too small, but she continues to wear them.
What a sweet face!
We eat, then the girls get their baths, the boys get a shower (sometimes a bath with a toy). We brush our teeth and after everyone is clean, we read books or snuggle up in momma and daddy's bed for a special movie night. If anyone is still awake, everyone uses the potty again, gets at least 5 more drinks of water and asks 562 questions before I can say a prayer with them. After we say a prayer, they always want to know the plans for the next day. After I answer another 10 questions, I kiss the oldest three goodnight and take Addy to our room. She will eat and then I lay her down in her crib. I am so thankful to God for all the blessings in our life. I feel so undeserving and humbled by His mercy and grace.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Roll Over!

I was actually able to catch Addy in action as she was rolling over! She was still kinda slow at this point. I love the expressions on her face!

Wow! How did that happen?!? So sweet! I am in love with my precious children, I just wish they would stop growing up so fast!

Monday, May 9, 2011

Sitting Pretty

Addy loves her bumbo seat! She was so proud of herself to be sitting up! I wish I would have had one of these with the other kids, it has been such a lifesaver.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Baby Chicks

On Mother's Day we came home from church and checked on our Momma silkie. She had two baby chicks!

We had to take them out to get a quick peek, and mother hen was not happy.
We enjoyed watching them with their Momma, and when we thought they were big enough we moved them back to the barn. Apparently they weren't as big as we thought and they both came up missing. But a few weeks later one of the chicks returned. We don't see much of it because it comes and goes whenever he/she wants. But it was a neat experience watching how fast they grew.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Spring Pig

Mr. Lynn and Ms. Rita from church invited the kids over to see their new baby pigs. With our crazy schedule it took us a few weeks to make it to their house and the pigs weren't so new. Here are a few pics from that morning.
The boys wanted to get a lot closer but after hearing tales of how a momma pig protects her babies, they quickly changed their minds.

Austen is seriously contemplating Mr. Lynn's proposal of trading a sister for a baby pig. He voiced his opinion that if he left a sister, it would most definitely be Ava and not Addy.
Ava was so cute that day in her overalls and boots!

We had been reading Charlotte's Web and once we got home the boys realized that these were "spring pigs." Maybe a spider is living in the barn and just waiting to intervene so they will all be spared. ;-)

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Haven't I Seen You on Television?

Nana works at Saline Audiology and they were shooting a new commercial for their business. Ms. Lisa and Ms. Credonna needed a baby for one of the shots and they asked for Addy. Then they decided they also needed a toddler... and a few older kids might work... well, we just so happened to have one for every age group!

Here's a look at the kids' 15 minutes seconds of fame!

The boys were asked to play with toys in the waiting room.
Addy with Ms. Credonna getting a newborn hearing screen.
Ava with Ms. Lisa in the hearing booth.

Addy, after a hard day's work, taking a much needed nap.

The commercial started airing in June, on KARK-4, but we have only seen it in an e-mail. Either way the kids' were super impressed with the end result. There are actually two commercials, one has just Addy, the other has all of the kids. I was so happy they asked us to participate, the kids had a great time. I have never tried this before, but I believe you can view the commercial by clicking here and here. Let me know if it doesn't work!

Chattering Children-Aiden

Aiden eats a lot! But he is still very thin, and we all joke about him blowing away. Sometimes we even call him "Twiggy." Sounds cruel, but he enjoys it. A couple of nights ago, he was eating some yogurt. I was in our bedroom and he came running to me, "MOM, the yogurt says you could lose 5 pounds in two weeks! I should probably stop eating it!"

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Chicken Stories

We currently have 6 chickens: 4 hens and 2 roosters. They are the boys' responsibility but Daddy helps them out. A couple of weeks ago, Daddy went to check for eggs and found this in the nest box!

He said the eggs were still warm and this guy was just waiting on them. Jake "relocated" the chicken snake, but now there must be a new one. The past few days we haven't had any eggs, or maybe all the storms just have them stressed. 

A few days later, our white silkie was hanging out in the nest box, which had never happened before. Jake went to gather the eggs and she pecked at his hand. We were wanting to get some new chicks, so he moved her to a hutch in the immediate yard to let her sit on her eggs. She had laid two eggs herself and apparently decided to play surrogate to the other hen's eggs. I love going out to look at her. She is such a good little momma. I was really worried about her in the recent storms. I just kept thinking of how I would feel if I was trying to protect my babies. She did fine and is still just waiting patiently.  She is now sitting on a total of 7 eggs, expected to hatch sometime this weekend. How exciting!