Saturday, May 30, 2009

The Garden of Eden

She makes playing in the dirt so much more fun...

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

What's For Dinner

Yesterday was the first time I had made a "proper" dinner in weeks. Between moving, unpacking and being exhausted, cooking hasn't been a high priority on my list.

We tried the Cilantro Lime Chicken recipe from Cooking Light, and it was good. I'm in the process of starting a small herb container garden (right now just some mint, cilantro, and chives), so I was excited to use cilantro from my garden (small pleasures, right?).

I did have to modify the recipe a bit - E doesn't like avocado (and we didn't have any in the house), so we just did without the salsa, though I'm sure it would have been REALLY good. :)

Anyway, here's the recipe. Enjoy!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

R's Story

R's birth story is pretty short... and pretty uneventful, but I'll share anyway. :) I had my OB appointment on Friday, and my doctor stated that I wouldn't "last through the weekend". I took it with a grain of salt and prayed that the baby would at least come by Sunday (L's birthday), so that I wouldn't feel the inner dilemma of going into work or not.

Saturday comes. I am feeling fine. In fact, I had been feeling great all week, so my hope of going into labor on the weekend was starting to fade a little for me. It was a rainy day, so going for a long walk was out, so we decided to grab lunch and go to Lowe's (E loves that place) and get some stuff for the house.

We get to lunch and the contractions started pretty much as soon as we sat down. We decided to skip Lowe's just in case it was the real thing (though I was doubtful). We drove home, and by the time we got back, the contractions were pretty close together and were getting intense. I took a bath, which helped a little, but still felt pretty terrible.

L called the hospital and my doc said to come in if they were getting more intense. We then called D, E's daycare worker, who was sweet enough to watch E until my parents arrived. She is so sweet to consider us "family".

On the ride to the hospital, I just kept counting through my contractions (art of distraction perhaps?) and thinking "I can handle anything for a short period of time" and repeating "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me".

We got to the hospital at 3:00 (my contractions started at noon), and the nurse checked me, and I had dilated to 6. She asked what my birthing plans were - I said I wanted to try it naturally, and that I wanted the jacuzzi and birthing ball. I was having some pretty uncomfortable back labor, and was a little irritated that they wouldn't let me sit up (they were trying to gauge the baby's heartbeat and had difficulty doing that while I was upright).

Anyway, the doctor arrived shortly afterward, and stated I had dilated to 8. The nurse had started running the bath for me (jacuzzi baths are the best), and then I started feeling the need to push. The pushing was intense and painful, but short (about fifteen minutes) and R was born at 4:02 pm, an hour after we arrived, and four hours after my contractions began.

This was a much more emotional birth for me... and I think it's because I was so aware of everything my body was telling me. I had such a cloudy feeling over me when E was born ( and her birth was still beautiful, and we were blessed with a healthy delivery which is what counts), but just felt outside of myself.... very strange.

I was so nervous of having to get an epidural (and I know many women prefer them... guess it's different for each person), and prayed all the way to the hospital that God would give me the strength to last through whatever pain was coming my way. And He did, and I'm so thankful.

The healing process has been much quicker than with E - probably because I tore naturally and didn't need an episiotomy this time around. Maybe I knew what to expect this time around, so it didn't feel as painful afterward? Not sure. In any case, it's gone quickly, which has been such a blessing since there are two kiddos now.

So... we've been twice blessed - a pretty cool big sister, and an adorable little guy who loves to snuggle. God is good.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

What I'm Loving...

1. Our newest addition. Now I now how you can love two kiddos in the same moment.
2. Snuggling with Babe. He's pretty great.
3. Sitz baths. Let's be real here.

4. How this kiddo knows what she wants. As soon as she saw the purple glasses she knew... they were to be hers.
5. Bubbles in the wind.
6. Family walks.
7. How weeds can be the most beautiful flowers.
8. Sleeping with the windows open on a breezy night.

9. The three people above. Life is so much richer with the three of them in my life.
10. How blessed I am to have L. He's a good daddy and a great husband.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Rhys is Here!

We're happy to announce the arrival of Rhys Everett on May 16th at 4:02 pm. He weighed 7 lbs. 15 oz. and was 19 1/2 in. long. We were blessed with a short (albeit intense) medication and complication free labor and delivery.

More details to follow, but all are home and doing well. Thank you for all your prayers!

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Be Still

I love quiet mornings when L and E are still fast asleep, and the only sound I hear is the rain falling on our home. Sometimes it's so easy to fill our home with noise - TV, radio, internet - that we miss the beautiful sounds that God gives us for free. The sound of a the wind in the trees, rain pattering down, the birds singing. These are the moments that truly want to make you stop and "be still".

I really struggle with being still, though it's so peaceful and needed. It seems I'm always rushing for something, filling my day with busy-ness and noise. Why does the silence make me feel as though I need to fill it with meaningless stuff much of the time... whether it be with activity, or drama or sound, etc?

And I know it's so so easy for me to worry, and drowning the anxiousness in activity is easy for me to do. The worry of how the birth will be, and how we're going to handle two children. How E is going to react to having another sibling around. If R is going to be a fussy baby, or will he have difficulties nursing. How will returning to work in six weeks feel like? Will my boss understand that I am not willing to work four full days, even if my workload requires that of me? Can I do both? Are we spiritually ready to lead two children in the way of Christ on a daily basis?

"Be still and know that I am God" Psalm 46:10

Those simple words are very encouraging to me, and have brought much peace to me this morning. I'm glad that He's bigger than me, and that His hands are stronger than mine. I don't know how the future will look, but God knows all things and will give me/us the strength to make it through. I often wonder why I doubt the One who has never let me down?

Praise God we're not alone in our struggles or fears or worries.

Praise God that He gives us peace that passes understanding.

And praise God that He graces us with gentle rainy mornings like this to remind us of simple blessings like silence... and strength.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

The "Still Pregnant" Post

Last week was pretty rough, being at the end of my pregnancy and having a nasty cold. I was SO ready to be done. I was miserable... no other way to put it, really. My mind could not focus on any one thing in particular.

Well this week came, and I felt/feel so much better. My energy level is back, I can breathe (thank you neti pot), had some nice restful sleep. I was able to get a little bit of extra work in, which means a little extra paycheck, which is helpful, though I complained about it until 4:00 yesterday. :)

And though we grumbled about waiting for baby to arrive until yesterday evening when E was incredibly sensitive. She cried over everything, which isn't really like her. She didn't want to eat, and just laid on me. We took her to the doctor because she's pretty tough even when she's not feeling well, and this was worst we have ever seen her. We are pretty glad that we did... hardcore ear infection in her right ear, and a minor one in her left.

So we prayed that baby would stay inside for another couple of days, until E feels better. Now, though, I'm kind of hoping it happens on L's birthday (17th). It'd be nice to get a couple days at home with E before the baby comes, and get some stuff done around here. Plus my pre-registration appt is tomorrow... and it would be nice to get that done.

But yes, I'm still pregnant, but not miserable. Praise God for a complication free pregnancy and hope that continues into the birth and delivery of R. We are certainly looking forward to meeting this little guy!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Ah, Yes - The Bathroom

Well one room we finished over the weekend was our second bathroom. There are a couple of things that we'd like to do over time, but we put a lot of work into it already (in my opinion). We repainted, changed most of the hardware, and tried to make it seem like "ours".

Here are a couple of "before" pictures. Sorry about that black dot that's in so many of our photos.... it's something underneath the lens, and we're too busy/lazy to change it. :) And yes, this window was painted orange.

These are a couple of "afters". I realize I'm not very skilled at taking pictures of rooms, so you'll have to use some imagination. It looks a lot better in person, if I do say so myself. :)

We are pretty lucky to have two pretty decent sized bathrooms. Coming from a place with one small bathroom, I feel like we have a ton of space.

In any case, enjoy!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

The Art of Breathing

The weekend we moved I caught this terrible cold that kept me up at night for nearly a week. I was congested, and couldn't breathe through my nose. I tried vapor rub, nose sprays of various brands... nothing seemed to help.

Well, enter neti pot. I've heard how wonderful this gross little "gadget" was, and was desperate enough to try anything. Now for those of you who don't know about the neti pot goodness, let me let you in a secret: it's amazing. You mix saltwater in the pot, and put the spout in your nose, allowing the water to flow out of your other nostril (while breathing out of your mouth). Yes, my hubby thought I was crazy for wanting one, but hey, he was sleeping fine at night!

I used it a couple times a day, and wow... it really does work. Much better than any cold medicine, and much cheaper, too, since it's a one time investment. If any of struggle with allergies or just can't stand irritating colds, a neti pot might be worth a shot.

Here's a blog that I found regarding the neti pot. Evidently I'm not the only crazy girl out there.

Oh, and by the way, Happy Mother's Day to all the moms out there. Hope you're having a great day!

Friday, May 8, 2009

Days Like These

I am just loving this spring weather. I'm thinking having a spring baby is really going to work nicely in our favor, as we'll be able to get out and enjoy the sunshine. The sun really picks me up, and hopefully force me to get outside, even when I'm exhausted. If that doesn't work, I'm sure the kiddo below will encourage me to go anyway. :)
I am so impressed by this little girl that will soon be a "big sister". She has so much life inside of her, so much curiosity, so much joy. We've spent our fabulous afternoon playing outside, planting flowers, having some of Daddy's ice cream (shhhh!!), and drinking this. I love days like these!

God has made motherhood such a special responsibility. It's hard and demanding and tiring, but it's the most rewarding role I've had yet. :) I feel like I should be thanking her for being such an incredible person than for her to be thanking me for being her mommy. She's way cooler than I am, no doubt.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Flower Power

E helped me plant these flowers on Saturday. They were on serious markdown, so I wasn't incredibly concerned if she was rough with them. Mostly she liked putting the dirt in and watering the flowers. "More water" she kept repeating. This is one of the fun aspects of parenting - teaching her, helping her learn, and seeing her eyes light up with excitement. I wish I had bought a few more plants, because flowers just make everything happier, don't they?

She has loved watching her Daddy work on our house, and it feels like we're getting somewhere, thank God. We're going room by room (ignoring the kitchen and living room at the moment), and each night we've tried to get something done - even if it feels minor.

Something that's helped us get our bottoms moving is 1) my nesting instinct 2) the fact we've decided to go without cable once again. No cable = no channels. We went cable free a few years ago when we bought our first house, and didn't want to pay for cable. I don't remember missing it (though, we relied heavily on our friends T and B to record Lost episodes).

We found that we were using cable as background noise, and we ended up watching shows that we never even cared about. There's nothing wrong with vegging once in a while, but it sucked up more time than it should have. So we're back to pocketing some extra cash, and being "forced" to find something to do in the evenings, even if it is just reading, etc.

Of course, don't worry. We're still feeding our Lost addiction and watching it online. Some shows are just worth keeping up with. :)

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

So, I'm Done

This is the one thing that I'm going to miss about our duplex - our lilac tree (er, bush). I really love the scent of lilacs... maybe our landlord/realtor will still let us clip a few as a thank you for all of our great business? :)

My main goal was to get a little more prepared for baby this weekend. The car seats are in the car, the baby's room is sort of up and running. The dipes/covers are ready to go with some disposables thrown in. Clothes are sorted. Blankets are folded. Swing is ready to go. Now we just need baby.

And, boy, this weekend made me decide that I am SO done being pregnant. This whole pregnancy I've been panicked that we have so much to do, so much on my mind. I'm certain that God makes us go these 40 weeks so that we welcome the birthing process by the end of them.

I'm uncomfortable and my belly is huge. :) Getting on the floor is probably humorous for my clients to see. Getting up is even funnier, I'm sure. I had some pretty strong contractions over the weekend, which encouraged me to get my bum moving on all things baby.

My doc says I'm dilated 2 cm, my cervix is thinning "nicely", and the baby's head is pretty low. He jokingly said "I bet you're feeling every pound of that". Why, yes, I am Mr. Doctor, which is why I am now waddling, and much of the reason why I'm ready to be done.

And I will be soon. Maybe later than sooner. Maybe sooner than later. But eventually, right?

Saturday, May 2, 2009

The Girl's Room

So we're going room by room, trying to get ourselves situated, so that we feel like we're actually accomplishing something. E's room isn't finished - her wall art is somewhere in the box abyss, but we're slowly making headway.

Here's what we have for now. The "Before Shot" - no carpet, and yes, they did paint the window green. Gotta love it.

And a couple "in process/maybe after depending how ambitious we get" pics:

Friday, May 1, 2009

The All Over Post

This was taken at the end of April last year. I hope May allows us many beach outings... I'm itching for some consistent warm weather.

I feel like things are starting to come together for us - in more ways than one. We've moved in to our house (though we're still swimming in boxes), and just the other day we had carpet placed into all of the bedrooms. E's room is the most "put together", so hopefully we can get a lot done this weekend.

We are liking our house, though - and looking forward to making it "ours" as time passes (and money is saved). Some things I'm drooling over doing is this:

Line drying my clothes
Gardening... E has asked to plant flowers this entire week. Maybe she'll live up to her name and have a green thumb?

As far as baby goes, we're a little less than three weeks away from my due date. I'm certainly starting to get uncomfortable and tired, but feeling like there's still some time left until he comes. Some really good news though - I think we've found THE name, but we need to say a few more times before we announce it to the blogging world. L actually suggested it early on in the pregnancy, and I shrugged it off but now it just seems to fit?

I'm feeling better about going on maternity leave. I've gotten a lot accomplished over the last couple of months. My supervisor and I went over so she knows what to cover when I'm gone. We were both surprised to realize I went from eight cases last August to over 40 cases now. No wonder I have more gray hair? I just NEED to get through this week at work, and then leave for six weeks, and then back to my three days a week. Oh, how I've missed that!

E's potty training progress is slow, but re-emerging. The last couple of weeks were a mad dash of cleaning and working on the house so we didn't even push it. The past couple of days have resulted in her going on the potty three times. This morning she went by herself, while I was showering. I didn't even know until I asked her to sit on the potty afterward. Major sticker points on that one. :)

Hmmm.... this post is so random, but my preggo brain seems to be working this way. We hope that you are all experiencing some sunshine. Now I'm off to take a nap. :)