Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Feeling blessed

This one's going to be a rambler so prepare yourself.

Today was an early day for us. David had to be at work before 7 to get things set up for an all day meeting. They're rolling out new product (or whatever it is they roll out) and so he'll be busy this week. I went ahead & got up because I was ready for Josh to eat (if you know what I mean!) and he was still sleeping. I made breakfast for David and myself and helped clean up the kitchen before he left. I just got out of the shower and even did my hair! Josh is still sleeping (although, as soon as I post this, he's sure to wake up).

Sometimes I like getting up early. Especially when the guys are still sleeping. It's nice and quiet and I can get a few things around the house done before Josh gets up and needs my undivided attention. He sleeps all night so when he does get up, he's ready to eat and doesn't tolerate a diaper change first thing very well. But I wouldn't dare wait to change him for fear of that thing busting. We really test the no-leak protection guarantee on those diapers! :)

We've been having a hard time financially just in the past few weeks. Everything was right on track, we were paying stuff off and had money left over at the end of it all but then all of a sudden, it shifted. I've been looking for a job and would love to find one that would allow me to work from home, but would need to make at least $1000 a month to cover daycare and have money left for bills. So, we've been without our phones for a few weeks and it hasn't been all that bad. I can still call 911 if something major happens and David has a work phone we can use if necessary. My Daddy got sick and I didn't have gas money to go to him. What if it had been life threatening?! Shameful. We're getting down to bare bones in the food department but we've been creative and had some interesting dinners. We haven't gone hungry yet. We have a friend who got some "extras" when they went to the grocery store and brought them to our house. She came just in the nick of time. We were out of milk, bread and lots of other things. I cried because of what a blessing it was and also because I was a little embarrassed. We got $60 and an unsigned note in the mail yesterday. It's happened before, from different people at different times, but I'm stunned every time. God does provide for us, even when it feels like He's forgotten or is too busy. It's a bit embarrassing, to be honest. David and I feel that we're too old to be in this situation and are more scared about it now because we have Joshua to worry about. I'm thankful that he is able to nurse and we don't have to buy formula. We would never be able to afford it.

Even in this time of struggle, I feel so blessed. Even now, life is so good. My little family is healthy. Josh is growing and learning. He's such a happy baby and is the joy of my life. David is a wonderful husband and daddy. I love watching those two together. I love them so much it hurts. My parents are happy and healthy (although they boh had a bit of a falling apart last week!). Daddy's tests revealed no cancer (!!!!!) and he's already back to work, serving the lost and visiting the sick. They're encouraging and caring. And even though I don't feel like I've done anything to deserve it, they tell me they're proud of me. My brothers both have dangerous jobs and thus far, have been spared from major injury. That in itself is a major blessing. Robert loves being a firefighter and is good at it. He wouldn't want you to know, but he's a big softy. I love watching him play with Joshua. I am proud of him and his commitment to our Lord, his wife and his fellow firefighters. His wife, Kate is so sweet. She's a good match for him and I'm so thankful that she loves my brother as much as she does. Matthew enjoys being a state trooper and even though it still blows my mind to think of my baby brother doing some of the things he does while working, I am so proud of him. He loves the Lord and his family and is strong and soft at the same time. Megan, his wife, is such a good match for him. I enjoy her company very much. It's nice to have sisters. :) She's smart and thoughtful. My grandparents (all 4 of them) are alive and well. Grandaddy is getting ready to fly off to Africa on the 29th (pray for that please!) and has revivals planned until 2011 or so. Grandmama is a loyal helpmate for him, a prayer warrior and they're both such a blessing to me. Grandpa is wise and a hard worker. Grandma is quiet and strong. She's soothing to my soul by just being around her. All of my Uncles, Aunts and cousins are happy and thriving (although I do earnestly covet your prayers for my Aunt Sissy, please). We live all across NC & VA (and even TN!) and as many times as we've run th8e roads to get together, none of us have ever had an accident on the road. That's amazing, really. I am so blessed to have been born into this family and wouldn't want it any other way.

We're planning a trip to the State Fair on Friday. So far, the "We'll be there" tally is at a confirmed 12 out of 21. Joshua will get to meet cousin Jake. Jake was at OCS when Josh was born and is the only cousin Josh hasn't met. It's been a while since all 21 of us were together in one place....in fact, I don't think there were 21 of us the last time we were all together. I wish we would all pick a date and meet up. I hate us being so spread out.

Well, Josh still isn't up. He slept 13 hours Sunday night. I was a little worried he was getting sick, but he seemed fine otherwise. We'll call it a growth spurt. ;)

I have a few errands to run today. I'm glad the weather is going to warm up for a few days.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

5 Months Old

Hello world! This is my first time doing this thing called blogging. Mama is always reading other blogs and when I asked her if we had one she rolled her eyes and said 'Yes, but I haven't written on it in a long time." So I decided to take over for a little while. It's been quite a while and I've done a lot of growing since she last wrote. We've been very busy so I've got my work cut out for me in updating you guys.

I'll start in September:

I went to my first high school football game and liked it a lot. Being outside is great! There's so much to see and hear. Anytime I get upset, Daddy & Mama take me outside and I get very quiet so I can pay attention to everything out there.

When I turned 4 months old, Mama & I went to Poppa & Grammy's for the weekend and got to see Grandpa & Grandma Hand. They're my great-grandparents and I miss them a lot. Grandma is soft and quiet. She likes to hug me and thinks everything I do is awesome. Grandpa is tall and when he holds me I can see everything! He is very wise and laughs at everything I do.

The next weekend, Mama gave me some rice cereal. I loved it! I wasn't too messy and even wanted more but she said we better take it easy the first time. I also rolled over that day from my back to my belly. Daddy & Mama went crazy! I don't see what the big deal is. Once I got onto my belly, I was stuck! Daddy claims that he coached me on how to roll over and takes all the credit for my learning how. We'll let him believe that if it makes him feel better. :-)

I had my 4 month check-up 2 days before Mama's birthday. I weighed 13.7 lbs, was 24 in long and my head was 43 cm around. Mama called me big head and said she was a little disappointed in my weight but the doctor told her not to worry about it. He said I was still small for my age, but was growing right along where I had been. I also got shots, but I didn't cry too bad. Mama was right there to hold me and feed me as soon as the lady with the mean sticks left. I was calm when Daddy put me in the car seat and fell asleep on the way home. The doctor also predicted that I'll be 6 feet tall!! Mama said that sounded about right. You can guesstimate how tall your kids will be too. Here's how. Add the daddy's height in inches to the mama's height in inches and add 5. Then divide by 2. If the child is a boy, add 5 inches. Voila! You have the estimated height of your child. :-) Mama said that sounds about right because Uncle Matt & Dude are about 6' 2" or 3" and the doctor said if Mama had been a girl, she would have been 5" taller. Stay tuned to see how tall I grow!

The first weekend in October we all went to Davidson, NC for Josh & Megan's wedding. No, I didn't get married....I'm still too little. Josh and his brother and sister grew up with Mama and her brothers and he's the last of the Peters/Hand kids to get married. There's a bunch of us now! We bunked in a room at the hotel with Uncle Matt & Mae Mae. I didn't sleep very well that weekend but they didn't seem to mind. They said they never heard me the whole time. One night, while Mama was changing my diaper in her bed, I peed everywhere!! I was already screaming because she wasn't getting around to feeding me fast enough so I really let 'em have it. Daddy blocked it with his hand, which is not quite as absorbent as a diaper or the sheets!! On the day of the wedding I went shopping with Grammy, Mae Mae & Mama. We went to a huge mall called Concord Mills. It's one mile all the way around so we walked a long way. We had lunch at Macado's & I tasted a little bit of bread. It wasn't that good. Then, they ordered a Cinnamon Sensation. They didn't offer me any of that! Mama let me sit up in my car seat while they ate and I did a good job holding myself up. Then she laid me down and I rolled over. She kept telling me I was going to roll out of there and I told her that was my plan! I had more shopping to do! I was a good boy while we were there. I took a couple of naps and didn't get fussy one time....okay, so maybe the ride there was a bit of a bear but I did better going back. The wedding was lots of fun. I almost got to taste an orange crush drink. If only my arms had been a little bit longer. We did lots of dancing and it was great to see all the friends from Mama's home church. Lemoine is my favorite. I think she's my biggest fan. She has a great laugh and laughs at EVERYTHING I do!! I'm trying to convince Mama to let us keep her around. On the way home from Davidson, we stopped at Station 4 in Raleigh to see Dude at work. He's a firefighter and showed me the Engine and Ladder truck. They were awesome. I have very brave uncles.

Mama tried to feed me cereal again but I didn't want it this time. It made me gag. Mama says I have her gag reflex. She gags at yucky smells a lot.

Mama got a new toy for me from Mrs Kelly and I LOVE it!! It's a Johnny Jump-up and it's tons of fun. I get lots of exercise when I'm playing in it. My first day using it was also the day Daddy & Mama had to take me to the Emergency Room. :-( This wasn't very fun for any of us and I didn't mean to make them scared. I was trying to go to sleep on my own while Daddy was at a softball game and Mama was relaxing in her room when I started to throw up. It isn't fun and I cried a little. Puke through the nose really burns! Mama came right in and picked me up. She took off my yucky pj's and held me very close. I laid my head on her shoulder because I was so sleepy and my tummy didn't feel good. She grabbed a clean burp cloth but I told her a towel might be a better idea......just in case. Luckily, she had me around to give her this great idea because I threw up again! This time, it was green and slimy. Mama kept telling me it was okay and that she would take care of me but I could tell she was a little scared. She called Aunt Bonnie, who is basically awesome, and she started asking lots of questions about me. Mama had to poke and squeeze me a little but I didn't mind. While she was talking to Aunt Bonnie, I puked again. More green and slimy! Mama hung up and called the doctor but had to leave a message. When the doctor called back, Mama was really panicking. Daddy wasn't near his phone and wouldn't answer all of her calls. The doctor said everything sounded normal and okay for a one time fluke but that because I was so little (hey, who you callin' little?!) I should probably make a trip to the ED for a test or two. Daddy came straight home and we all got back in the car. I puked again on the way there and gagged a little. We did lots of waiting while we were there. Mama tried to feed me but I was too tired. I fell asleep and woke up to some crazy ladies holding me down to take a picture of my insides. I didn't like that too much. I could see my Mama was close but she couldn't hold me. I didn't like that part. I finally ate something after that and went back to sleep. The doctor said I was just constipated and said I could go home. All that for nothing! Oops. Mama says she's just happy nothing was really bad & I wasn't really sick. We had lots of people praying for us while we were there.

After a big poop, I was feeling much better and Mama and I got invited to the NCSU/Duke football game that Saturday! We went with Aunt Bonnie, Tiffy (my cousin) and Jennifer Parker (her sister & Mama went to MACU together). I slept all the way to Raleigh and when I woke up, we were almost at Tiffy's house. I got to have lunch there and met Riley, Tiffy's dog. He's very nice and let me pet him. Then we went to Aunt Bonnie & Uncle Doug's house. We got to see Uncle Doug's new home office. He's starting a new company and is working from home. He had gotten some new desks and bookshelves and was very excited. We went to the game and I was very sleepy. We saw the NCSU marching band come by and even though the drums were loud, I didn't cry. I watched them all walk by and laughed when they danced funny. I fell asleep when they left and Aunt Bonnie bought me a NCSU t-shirt. I can't wait to wear it! Daddy just rolled his eyes when he saw it.....he doesn't like the wolfpack. We had a great time at the game. I liked watching the guys run around on the field and Aunt Bonnie did a good job explaining the rules to me. I won't mention the score of the game for fear of Mama crying again, but we had a good time and that's all that matters. It was past my bedtime when we left to come home and I didn't want to leave. I cried in protest most of the way home.

Mama does this thing on the computer she calls Skype. It kinda confuses me. I can hear my Poppa and Grammy come out of the computer screen but can't find them. Mama says it's because they don't have a camera. I did get to see Uncle Matt & Mae Mae the other night. Mae Mae's brothers and sisters were there too. Uncle Matt made faces and they all laughed when I blew raspberries at the camera. It was fun.

Well, I turned 5 months old this past Tuesday. Mama said it went by way to fast but it feels like a lifetime to me. ;-) Mama's amazed at how much I can do now. I have the rolling thing down pat now and don't get stuck on my belly anymore. I even rolled under the chair today to see what was under there. I put myself to sleep in my swing and even sometimes in the car. I don't have to be bounced and swaddled to get to sleep anymore. I'll even fall asleep on your shoulder if you hold me just right. I sleep all night most nights and wake up happy and smiling. I do well when other people hold me. I like to play and take rides in the stroller. I love bath time and really like it when Daddy talks to me. He can make me laugh no matter what.

That about wraps it up for now. I made Mama promise she wouldn't go this long without filling you all in again. She says she'll do her best.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

This totally stinks

I'm feeling angry. And heart broken. Frankly, this whole thing sucks.

This is not fair. It's not fair that a Mama and Daddy should have to bury their child. It's not fair that they would grow him and love him only to have him taken away. It's not fair that they should feel this much pain. It's not fair that I still have my baby and they don't. It isn't fair that so many people who have no business having babies and don't take care of them have babies and get to keep them and my sweet friends who loved and took such good care of their baby don't. I know life isn't fair, no one said it would be.

I pray that I can be the kind of friend Lindsay and Jeremy need. David and I went to visit with them and their families last night. Lindsay was so gracious. As we were leaving I told her I loved her and was here for anything she needed/wanted. She told me that she loved me too and then said "Please hug Joshua for me. And hug him for Ayden too. I'm so glad you have him because I know how much you wanted him and how much I wanted him for you." She is such a good friend. And that's a total understatement. I feel guilty, grateful, so so sad. I'm trying to not be consumed by all of this. Satan wants us to live with the fear of something bad happening to our baby. I REFUSE to do that. My God is perfect, all knowing, loving and alive. His plan is perfect and is what's best for us. It's my job to trust Him and follow His plan. And I will. Satan has no victory here.

My heart breaks for them both. I cannot imagine how badly they're hurting or the totally wide range of emotions they're feeling. I so wish I could take even just a little of the pain away, or give them some tiny bit of understanding as to why this had to happen. But I can't. I can only pray that they'll hold tightly to the Lord and to one another. I pray for their marriage. I pray for their siblings and parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, everyone affected by this. I pray for their friends. That we can be the support they need. I have no idea how those who don't believe in the promise of Heaven and eternal life survive. How do those without a church family do it? I pray constantly for the Lord to return and take us all to be with Him forever. Wouldn't that be wonderful?!

I better get going. Jake will be here in a few minutes to spend the day with us. It will be a crazy day. My mama is coming around 1 to keep Josh while we go to Ayden's Celebration of Life service. We have to pick up Amber from the airport at 2 and then head over to the church building after that.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Coveting your prayers...

I would like to ask for you to pray for our dear friends, Jeremy & Lindsay. For whatever reason we won't understand on this side of Heaven, the Lord called their sweet baby boy home this morning. Ayden was only 4 months old. I cannot imagine what they are feeling and thinking. I only know that they need our love and support now more than ever. Please pray that they will have peace and comfort. Please pray that they will lean even deeper into the arms of Jesus as they grieve. Please pray that we, and their friends and families will support them in whatever they need. They will be going to the funeral home tomorrow (Wed) at 10 am to make arrangements. Please make a note for yourself to pray specifically for them at that time. Also pray for them in the weeks, months and years to come.

I am anxiously awaiting our Lord's return.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

But I don't wanna go home!!!

Man, this week has gone by waaaay too quickly. It's not fair that vacation goes by so fast and every other week just creeps by. Oh well, I guess time does really fly when you're having fun. ;) And we have been having fun. Our family is funny. Not in a bad way. We're just funny. My Dad and Uncle Doug (Mama's brother) have been friends since they were kids. My Mama and Aunt Bonnie have been friends just as long. Friends married friends (a week apart!!) and I've had a lifetime of laughter ever since. Doug and my Dad are just crazy together. I joked with Bonnie that when we put those two in a nursing home, the staff will be calling us to come take them back!

And we'll now pause for a quick baby feeding session. ;)

Okay, that feeding session turned into a day or so. Oh well.

We're back home now. Josh has been sleepy this afternoon. I think the driving makes him a little sick to his tummy . He sleeps a lot after we make a long trip. We all took naps from about 3:30 till 7 and then Josh ate and went back to sleep. I'm not waking him for his bath. I'll just let him sleep. That will give me a chance to start laundry and put things away.

I didn't realize until we got home this evening that when you hold Josh's hands and pull him to a sitting position, he will stand up on his own!! Megan had been doing this with him all week but I thought she was pulling him up to standing. I can't believe it!!! I'm now in the market for an excer-saucer. :) I know he's young, but I think he'd enjoy hanging around in one. He's doing so much better with head control and it would be great practice for him. I have a feeling we'll be skipping the crawling stage (like I did) and go straight to walking. We took a video of him today "walking" down the hallway to David. If you hold his hands and stand him on the floor, he'll take steps like he's going somewhere. It's insane. Time to baby-proof the house!! :)

Alright, off to do more laundry and find something to eat. Our cupboards are so bare. We got milk and bread tonight and have a few things in the freezer we can scrape together.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009


We're having a great time at the beach. I can't believe it's already Wednesday. :( I don't want to go home!!!

Josh has been a good boy. He LOVES the waves. We've all taken turns holding him and and walking in the surf. He like to watch the waves come in and out and gets testy when we walk back to the tent.

There's a sand bar or something here and a small dip in between the tent and the surf. The water pools there and is so warm. It's like bathwater. Josh loved it. He is learning to splash.

Sunday at church, Mom was holding Josh and she put her arm under his feet. He stood right up and grinned so big. He was so proud. Everytime he stands up now (which he thinks he can do on his own) he looks around to see who is looking. If we all cheer and make a big fuss over him he grins and acts proud.

We've had a great time of sweet fellowship with our family. Lots of laughter and new memories made. I'll hate to go home.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Praying....Beach....Praying AT the Beach!

First of all, I'm coveting your prayers for some friends of ours. Joshua's new friend, Savannah, is needing our prayers right now. So are her parents and the rest of their family. You can get more specifics here on her Mama's blog. I'm snuggling my Monster extra tight today. (I know most of the people who read my blog also read hers...but you never know and someone might randomly happen upon my blog and throw up a prayer. And one can never have too much prayer!)

Secondly, I'M GOING TO THE BEACH!!! Woo Hoo! I'm sitting in my parent's living room waiting for my guys to get up so we can get ready for church. We're going to the early service @ PHCC and then Mama has to lead songs during the 2nd service. We'll come back here to pack up the car and then hit the road.....as soon as Joshua says we can. He's in charge around here. ;) David has to work tomorrow and Tuesday but will be coming down after work and I can't wait! I LOVE the beach. I love everything about it. Yes, even all that sand! I'm hoping to update throughout the week.

Joshua has been extra sleepy the past few days. I'm not complaining, but it's a little worrying at the same time. I have no idea if it's normal. I'm assuming it is. Thursday night we went to bed at midnight (wasn't fussy...just wouldn't sleep!) and slept until almost 9. He ate, played a little and went back to sleep until 1! He took a little nap in the car around 6 and then was awake from 6:30 to 8:30. I had to wake him up at 7:30 yesterday morning!! I had already pumped a bottle once and was ready for him to eat again (if you ladies know what I mean! ;)) and he had no intentions of waking up any time soon. He ate and was back asleep by 8:30 and slept until 1pm. He was up for the rest of the afternoon. Only slept 30 min on the ride to Roanoke Rapids for dinner. He ate during our dinner and then went to bed at 9 and is still sleeping right now. I'm hoping he'll sleep well on the way to the OBX. It's a 3 hour drive and I don't want a repeat of our drive through PA. EEEEEKK! I have a few bottles ready to go and we can stop if we need to. We can't get in the house until 4 anyway. Sooo, for all you 'experienced' mamas out there....is it normal for him to be sleeping so much?! Is it a growth spurt or something?! He sleeps so much and eats about every 2 hours when he's awake. I guess he has to eat so often to make up for the meals he's missing by sleeping all night. He's been eating every 3-4 hours the past few weeks.

Ok, I'm off to get dressed for church and wake the boys. Keep praying for Savannah!!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

I've gotten several comments on my last post...mostly about the part on breastfeeding. I had a chat with Tiffany, my cousin (who by the way is in Haiti right now - pray for her!) and I was able to get a few things off my chest. I don't have to be careful about how to word what I want to say with her; like I do on this blog.

Thanks ladies, for your encouragement. I've decided that from now on whenever CFL (crazy formula lady) asks me if I'm using formula yet I'm going to tell her "No, I've decided to breastfeed my baby. As his mother I know what's best for him. Breastfeeding works for us." I will kindly thank her for her concern and politely tell her to BUTT. OUT. :) She doesn't live in our home, or spend any time with my baby to know him like I do.

Laura: I agree with you; I think every mother should at least try. Women were made to feed their babies! I am an advocate of breastfeeding & encourage others to try it but don't think it's the only option by any means.

Lindsay: I really hope I NEVER, EVER made you feel bad for deciding to give Ayden formula. If so, please forgive me. I can understand your feelings about not liking it. I had such a hard time at first. I've cried lots of tears over this! The pain, frustration, time spent working on it. I have a great support system. And yes, Ayden is growing just fine!! :) If all our babies were the same we'd be so bored!!

Lauren: All that hooplah on Patrice's blog broke my heart. I can't imagine all she goes through in caring for Jonah and wouldn't dare tell her how to do it. I had someone I went to RBC with send me a message on FB after looking at my photos of Josh and not so kindly 'reminded' me that having Josh sleep on the boppy could cause him to smother to death. I chose not to respond. You can imagine how that could have turned out! ;) I imagine she would really freak out had she known he used to sleep WITH us in our bed. Two of her four children require special attention and I don't dare tell her how to manage her household. (and I'll take those alarm thingies! Thanks!)

Why can't women encourage each other in doing what works for them and their family?! It's disappointing.

Okay, I've ranted about this enough. No more blogs about it. ;)

Here's a little something to make up for having to read all that.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

4 days and counting......

I'm going to start blogging more regularly again and just pretend that there wasn't a time when i went for weeks without writing. :)

4 days till we leave for the beach!! It will be our first vacation as a family of 3!!! I know Josh won't be doing much on the beach this year but I can't wait to put his little feet in the sand for the first time. When we went for Courtney's wedding we never took him out of the carrier during the wedding. I'm taking a blow-up bathtub that we borrowed from Emelie to use as a pool while we're there. He won't be doing much in it but since he's into taking baths now, maybe he'll tolerate splashing around a bit. I'm also excited to spend the whole week with lots of family. My Daddy, Mama, Granddaddy, Grandmom, Uncle Doug, Aunt Bonnie, Robert, Kate, Matt and Megan, David, Josh and myself will all be there for the week. We'll miss Tiffy, Chris and Beth!! I'll have to find someone to walk to the pier with me since Tiff's not coming. ;) We've rented 2 houses this year since all the Hand kids are married and require our own rooms. No more double bunk beds. :( The bigger house is right on the ocean!! And the other is directly behind it. Can't wait to have breakfast on the deck and watch the waves roll in. The houses are across the road from Kitty Hawk Kites and I think we already have plans to go get ice cream from over there. Lauren is coming next Friday to take some photos of the family. Mom has been wanting a portrait of all the "kids" since the boys got married last summer. We're all so busy and are on the go so much we still haven't gotten it done. If Lauren thought the photo shoot with the 3 of us was a trip, she's got a wild ride in store. I'm sure she'll have a few good stories to tell when she's done with the Hand Clan. :) Pray for her!! haha

I've made a list of everything I need to take to the beach. Geez...who knew one tiny person could require so much stuff?! :) I've already started packing the car up. I have most of it ready to go. I've even packed Josh's bag!

Josh had his first non-family babysitter Monday. Lauren (who was in our youth group @ Macedonia and lives 2 apartments down from us) came by to keep him. He slept the whole time! She was bummed but stayed around after I got home to play. He smiled and laughed for her. Such a sweet boy. Everyone has said just to hang tough until he is 3 months old and it will get better. They were so right. He's like a totally different baby! Not nearly as fussy, does much better in his car seat for longer periods of time (although I'm sure he thinks we're heading for NY again every time we put him in that thing!). He's been sleeping all night without being swaddled. It's been almost a week since I swaddled and bounced him to calm him down. He's taking baths like a normal baby, instead of insisting on a shower; and he's content just to hang out and splash around for a while. Tonight he stayed in so long he got all pruney! :) He's doing better with tummy time and prefers that David carry him around football style. I can't believe he'll be 3 months old Thursday. He's doing great. He's small for his age, but he's healthy and growing normally. His height and weight are about the same as far as percentages go so I've been told not to worry that he's getting enough to eat, or that he's behind. He sleeps through the night, he's happy and active. If he wasn't getting enough he wouldn't do any of that.

*steps onto soapbox*
I've had several people....women, in fact, ask me why I wasn't giving him formula because he is smaller than most babies his age. I'm sick of it. I decided before I was even pregnant that I wanted to breastfeed if I could. I know that some women can't. I totally understand their frustration. I've gone through a lot in just trying to keep breastfeeding for 3 months. But I feel that it's worth it and so I'm determined. I'm not anti-formula, really, I'm not. I realized that some mamas can't nurse, and some babies can't; for whatever reasons. That's why formula was made and it's wonderful that it's an option for those who need/want it. I don't want it or need it so leave me alone! :) Being asked over and over has made me question myself as a mother. Am I giving him enough to eat, should I at least supplement with formula, etc. Whatever a Mama's decision, she should be encouraged in that decision. I have friends who chose not to breastfeed and I never once asked them why or told them they were foolish or selfish. It's wrong for women to treat each other that way. *steps off soapbox* ;)

Lauren, who babysat Monday, had her apartment broken into. She didn't stay there Sunday night, and I'm glad she didn't. She didn't go by there before she came here yesterday either so she isn't sure when it happened. Between 10:45am Sunday and 12 pm Monday. We didn't hear or see anything and neither did the neighbors. They came in through the window in her guest bedroom. Just before Joshua was born, we had locks put on our windows. Before that, there weren't any. I've had to break in because I locked myself out before and if I can do it, anyone could. It's scary! Had it been our apartment, they would have come right in Joshua's room. It makes me sick just to think of it. I'm looking into some type of security system. Even if it's alarms on the windows and doors. I'd also like to get one of those arm things for the sliding door in our room. We should have done all this before now.

Josh has had lots of new friends born recently! He had a play date with Landon last week. He hasn't met Mia yet, but will soon. He met Savannah the day she was born and told me he thinks she's pretty....and she is. ;) He and his best buddy Ayden checked each other out last Sunday. It's so funny to watch two babies stare at each other.

I recently got a letter from my best friend in college, Mia. She's been married for a few years and I hadn't heard from her since before I got pregnant. Oddly enough, she had a baby girl March 11th!! We were both pregnant at the same time and didn't even know it! :) Baby Harley is just beautiful.

Josh is sleeping now so I'm off to bed too. I hate that we'll miss the meteor shower tonight. It's a tradition to watch it. Growing up we were always at the beach when it happened and Mama and Aunt Bonnie would fuss for us to go to bed, only to have Daddy and Uncle Doug wake us up at 1:00 am to go outside and see the meteors. :) It's storming here now so we'll miss it this year. It just wouldn't be the same without my brothers and cousins here anyway. Robert's in Raleigh, Matt's in Emporia, Chris is in Tennessee and Tiff's in Haiti. When did we all grow up and move away?! Sigh.....

Good night!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Birth Story

Ok, so it's been a month since Joshua was born and I've been a bit busy so no blogging for me. :)
I wanted to write his birth story out before I forgot most of it (need to update the baby book too!) and while I'm sure most of you already know how it all went down, here are the details anyway.

After being pregnant for 9 months, I was a bit antsy to have this baby come OUT and was trying to think of ways to make it happen. I was tired of waiting for Josh to make his debut on his own. On Tuesday, May 12th, Lauren and Pepper came over for a walk. We walked a pretty good distance (not sure just how far) and I was very tired and sore afterward. We had TNT that night and I had no time for a nap. David came home from work and we headed out to the Loft. Everything was normal that evening. No pains, no contractions (not even Braxton Hicks!). TNT was great (as usual) and we got back home around 9:30 or so. David had to go back to his office to finish up some work and I went to bed. He got back home at 10:30 or so and I was still awake. I couldn't get comfy and was having a hard time falling asleep. He hooked up his laptop and worked/watched tv in bed for a while. I started having a crampy feeling and David noticed that I was in pain. He asked how far apart the pains were and after timing them at about 5 minutes apart, we began to wonder if this was it! I got up to potty around 11:30 and my water broke! I couldn't believe it! We both freaked a little and then calmed down enough to call the midwife and get our things together for the hospital. We called our parents on the way to the hospital (Daddy thought I was joking). My parents got up, dressed and hit the road! David's mom had been vacationing at the OBX that week and planned to come later that morning. We thought Joshua would wait for her to get here!

By the time we arrived at the hospital the contractions were getting intense. I was so excited! We finally got checked in (that pre-registration stuff is a joke!) and they hooked me up to an iv, fetal heart monitor, contraction monitor and blood pressure monitor. They drew some blood and sent it off for testing. They told me that when it came back, I could get an epidural, which I was planning to do. They got me set up in a room (wonderful room!!) and my parents arrived shortly after. My brother, Robert & his wife, Kate also came from Raleigh. She had said from the beginning that I needed to go into labor during the night so she could call in "sick" from work to be there. ;)

By now, the contractions were coming 3 at a time and VERY close together. The first wouldn't even stop before the next one would come. Everyone kept watching the monitor to tell me when it was going back down. They were all great. We talked (which helped disctract me) and laughed (ask about the farting chair we had) and encouraged me to breathe through it and NOT make any noise (unlike the lady next door!). By about 4 am I was asking where that epidural was and told mom I felt like it would help to push. She said "no, you haven't been here long enough....." and I ordered David to find a nurse because I was going to start pushing. :) Dad and Robert had escaped to the waiting room by this time and Mom and Kate also went while the nurse finally brought in the epidural pump. She checked me and told me she thought I was ready to go! She went and got the midwife, Diette, and she checked me and said "Yep, we're ready! We'll have a baby in about 10 minutes!" Just then the anesthesiologist came in and Diette asked if I was going to be able to sit still on the bed for him to give me the epidural. I told her no, that I needed to push now!

So, I started pushing. David was great! He was encouraging and supportive. The nurse, Amy, was great and Diette was awesome. I had great "coaching" from all of them and couldn't have done it as quickly as I did without them. Meanwhile in the waiting room.......Mom and Kate were getting antsy. :) They had been out there for about 20 minutes and were expecting David to come and get them to let them know that I had gotten the epidural and they could come back to the room. They decided to give us 10 more minutes and then they would come back with or without permission. After 5 (b/c they were very impatient!) they headed back down the hall to our room. The door was shut and a nurse came out just as they got to it. They heard Joshua crying and mom asked the nurse who's baby that was. The nurse said "She had that baby!"

So, after about 5 hours of labor and 10 minutes of pushing (and NO pain meds!), Joshua was born at 4:33 am on Wed, May 13th. He weighed 7 lb 3 oz and was 20 in long. :)

The staff at PCMH was awesome. After David cut the cord, they put a hat on Josh and I just held him. It was a long time before they gave him his bath and we got him dressed. I think we all held him before all that.

Matt and Megan came later that day to meet Josh. So did David's mom and Gram. We had lots of visitors and were very proud to show him off. :) We have the most wonderful friends. We're so blessed.

It's amazing that I remember some details and others are just a blur. I only remember bits and pieces of what happened while I was pushing. I know they couldn't keep track of Josh's heart beat and Diette told me that we had a little baby and his heart rate was going down so we needed a really good push to get him out. I remember David telling me he could see Josh's hair and I asked if his head was beautiful. :) It is.

It will be 4 weeks Wednesday since he was born and it feels like we've had him forever. He's already changed so much and the time really does fly! He lost a lot of weight after he was born and it took him 3 weeks to get back up to his birth weight. But, we've gotten the eating thing down now so he's packing on those pounds......er, ounces! :) I've been so lucky to have my Aunt Bonnie, who is a Lactation Consultant, just a phone call away to ask questions and get opinions and advice. I've also made a contact with the La Leche League here in Greenville, Mimi. She's WONDERFUL!!! She came by on a Saturday (when I was ready to quit breastfeeding) and spent 2 hours with me and Josh working on everything. Breastfeeding isn't easy, isn't the wonderful mom-baby-bonding time I anticipated and I've had a few setbacks, but I'm determined. She's been checking in on us, without being annoying about it, and I'm comfy calling her to ask questions. And best of all, it's all FREE!!

Doesn't he look like a little man sitting there?! So cute!

And this one's my (current) favorite.

Ok, that's all for now, and yes, I really am writing all this at 3:30 in the morning. He's been asleep since 10:30!!! I'm so glad that 3 week growth spurt is over! I'll need 3 weeks to recover before his 6 week growth spurt. :) I'm going to head back to bed, as I'm sure he'll be up to eat again soon.

Monday, April 27, 2009

37 week check-up

We had a good visit at the OBGYN this morning. All my cultures from last week were negative so that means no antibiotics when it's time to have the baby. :) I know if it had been positive it wouldn't be a big deal, but I'm glad that's one less thing we'll have to worry about when the time comes. We'll also be able to leave the hospital earlier than if it had been positive.

Everything else is good. BP was good, urine was negative. The only pains I've been having is a feeling like my pelvis is coming apart (which rarely happens...but could). It hurts to even stand up. Carolyn (one of the midwives) said that she had the same pains when she was pregnant and it was normal. I wasn't worried about it....it just hurts! :) I did measure a week behind (36 weeks again this week) and Carolyn said it could be because Joshua has dropped a little. His feet (and boney little butt!!) aren't quite in my ribs like they had been.

I didn't do any crazy cleaning yesterday....but I'm loving my clean kitchen I worked on Saturday night. I also got a few things done in the nursery. Here's a picture of the letters Lauren made for us hanging over the crib. I love them!!

And just for fun, here's an updated picture of the baby birds out in the front yard.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Babies Everywhere!

Spring has sprung in our front yard!

Aren't these baby robins so cute?? :) I'm sure their mother thinks they are. They just hatched a day or two ago and are still very quiet. I'm sure as they get older we'll be able to hear them holler for food!

Monday, April 20, 2009

Still Here......

It's been a month or so since I last blogged. I just haven't felt like it. :) Soooo, I'll try to play catch-up and fill everybody in on the goings-on in the White House since the last post.
The nursery is pretty much complete. The crib and changing table are ready to go, we got a chest of drawers and have it filled with clothes already! We rearranged the room a little to make room for the chest and hopefully a rocker/glider/whatever. My sweet husband used his saturday morning to clean out the closet in the nursery. (I think it went pretty quickly once I was out of his way!) ;) I didn't take an updated picture because we haven't hung pictures or anything else and still have 2 showers to go. I'm sure we'll be doing more rearranging even after Joshua's home.

Speaking of pictures.....Lauren took some wonderful pregnancy photos of me and David a few weekends ago. (You can check them out on my facebook) We were really excited about having them done and will finally have something to hang in the baby's room. Lauren's very creative and an awesome photographer (PLEEEEAASE check out her website).

We made an impromptu trip up to Yorktown to visit with David's mom, gram and sister a few weeks back. We had a good time (as always!) and enjoyed getting to spend some time with them. On the way back home, we stopped at 7-11 and got a hot dog for dinner. David and I used to do that a lot when we lived in Elizabeth City and thought it was a treat since we don't have any 7-11s here. It wasn't such a treat this time. :( David apparently got a little case of Salmonella. It got pretty ugly pretty fast. It's been 2 weeks and he's just about back to normal again. I'm glad he's feeling better. He never gets sick!! Not even a cold!! I'm sorry he was sick, but I'm glad it wasn't me!

I went to Gasburg for the weekend and spent some time with dad, mom, Robert & Kate. I went there to attend Courtney's wedding shower. She and Zach are getting married May 16th at Nags Head and I want to go SOOOO badly!! (Yes, that is 2 days before our due date) I'm hoping we'll get to go, but since our time is now scheduled by Joshua, we have to do whatever he wants. :) Anyway.....it was a nice party and we all had a good time. Lots of laughing (which is good anytime!) Isn't she gorgeous?

In other baby news: We had our 36 week check-up today. (Not fun...but not as bad as I thought) I am 1 cm dialated and 5% effaced. I'm not getting too excited about it....he hasn't dropped and I could be 1 cm right up until my due date! She said she thought we were right on schedule. My BP was good, pulse a little low and everything else was good. They did the strep B test and other tests that we'll get the results of next Monday when we go back. I can't believe we're having weekly visits already!!! These loooong months have flown by!! She did determine that Joshua is head down (they haven't been 100% sure until today!) so we didn't get an ultrasound. :( I want to see him so badly!!! I guess I'll have to wait until he actually gets here; which would be better than an ultrasound anyway! Freida (the midwife I saw today) drew a picture on my belly of how Joshua is sitting. Isn't that funny?! David missed the drawing and so I showed him after we left the office....he laughed really hard. :)

And just for good measure, here's an updated belly pic for the grandmas (and everybody else).

Friday, February 20, 2009

Caution: Nursery in Progress

Here are some pictures of the changing table and crib all set up. We still have some re-arranging to do but we're ready in case something happens!! :) (which it won't, b/c he's a good boy and will stay put until May 18th!)

Monday, February 16, 2009

So stuffy!

I've got a sinus infection....and it's torture! I'm pretty sure Joshua has gone through a growth spurt because I've been more tired these past few weeks than before. I went back to the doctor today to get medicine for my sinus infection and the midwife listened to Josh's heartbeat again and measured my belly again. His heart rate was 150 (just like it's always been!) and I measured 27 weeks (I'm 27 weeks today!). David kept saying he was going to be a big baby because I measured a week ahead last week. I told him that Josh just went through a growth spurt last month and WON'T be a huge baby! Why would someone wish that on a woman anyway?! :) That's just cruel.

I also gained 1 pound since last Monday. EEK! I've only gained 14 pounds in 27 weeks and I know I'm supposed to gain weight but I'd really like to not go crazy with it. ;) I still have 3 months to go.

David and I played with Joshua last night. It's so fun to poke around on my belly and watch him nudge back. He loves it when his Dad talks to him and David always gets a bigger reaction than I do. We listen to his heart beat with the stethoscope and after a few minutes of this Joshua gets annoyed with us cramping his already limited space and starts kicking the stethoscope (which is LOUD!!). I can hardly wait for him to come out and play! I'm just so ready to see him!

The sweet girls at work are giving us a baby shower this Sunday evening. Mom is coming (and maybe Megan!) and I'm excited about seeing them. Mom and Dad are in Florida for a few days and she's been baby shopping! Joshua officially has more clothes than I do! :) I'm lucky to work with the girls I work with. We're all so different (ages, places in our lives, etc.) and we all get along really well. I love my Hallmark ladies! :)

I'm watching this show called Dogs: 101 and they're talking about Yorkies. They're apparently hypoallergenic b/c they have human like hair instead of regular dog fur. Hhhmm.....and they're just so cute! (But not recommended for families w/young kids....they snap!)

I've got to find motivation to get some housework and homework done. I'm exhausted from not being able to sleep because I can't breathe and am ready for bed right now! Ooooo, and we have clean sheets on the bed tonight! I LOVE clean sheet night!

Ok, Dave's on his way home and I'm going to go finish dinner.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Week 26!

I can't believe it's been almost a month since I last wrote on here. Nothing exciting happens around here. :)

I had my 26 week check-up at the OBGYN today. I did the glucose test and will get the results from that soon. They gave us our hospital pre-registration packet. Lots of good info about visitors, types of rooms and classes offered. They measured my belly for the first time. She said I measured 27 weeks. David keeps saying Josh will be a big baby and I DO NOT want to hear that!!! :) We heard Joshua's heartbeat again. Strong and steady! I'm amazed every time I hear it. I had a few questions for the midwife and got them all answered. Our results from the Downs test came back normal. We've been so blessed through all of this. Joshua is the most prayed for little man!!! He's getting more active and has been kicking harder. Sunday during church he kicked me right by my ribs and I jumped! I wasn't expecting it and it surprised me. He moves a lot during class which is distracting because I want to pay attention to him moving but need to focus on class. He moves a lot right before bedtime and goes crazy when David talks to him. We've been listening to his heartbeat with a stethoscope and he tolerates the poking a prodding for a few minutes and then starts poking and prodding back! :) It's fun.

We finally got our new mattress!! It's WONDERFUL! The best money I ever spent. :) My back doesn't hurt and I don't roll in the middle of the bed anymore! David still snores though......we'll have to work on that one. ;)

The sweet girls I work with are giving us a shower on the 22nd. I'm so excited!! I've gotten some things set up in Josh's room and can't wait to get the crib and changing table! I've already gotten our bedding and it's washed (in Dreft!!) and ready to go. We got the bookcase my Grandpa Hand built me when I was little and I've put books on it already.

Ok, David's making me get off here so he can restart the computer. He keeps getting hundreds of e-mails b/c of something to do with something with his new phone and this is day 4 of trying to fix it.

Friday, January 16, 2009

What a week!

Man, this week has gone by so slowly. I looked forward to Friday all week and it ended up being the worst day yet.

Classes are going well. I have actually understood everything we've covered in Chemistry so far and even kinda almost somewhat like it. :) We finished the 2nd chapter today and have our first test next Friday. My instructor told us this morning that usually only 1 out of 3 students pass CHM 094! Thanks for the encouragement, Barnabus. I'm determined to be that 1 out of 3 and I'd just like to see him stop me. Anatomy is going well too. It's a little more in depth than BIO 163 was but it's basically the same information. I'll definately need to keep studying but at least it's familiar to me. That helps tremendously.

Work is ok. I was only scheduled for 8 hours this week. Corporate cut the hours given to our store to schedule employees and so all the part-time employees have been cut back to 9 hours (or less) a week. I was scheduled for 4 1/2 hours next week but gave mine to Lauren so I could go see RENT with Tiffy in Durham. (We're very excited!) I'm trying to decide if it will be worth it to keep working till April, as planned or to just leave now. It would be easier if someone would just decide for me. :) Anyone?

I had a little scare today. I was coming come from paying the power bill and was sitting at the stoplight in front of Adam's car wash on G'ville Blvd. The light was red (thus the sitting) and I saw the car in front of me moving forward. I thought she was going, so I went.....she wasn't going....and I abruptly stopped going too. Scary. I got out to see if she was ok and she was already on the phone with the police. She was alone, and I was alone and we were both ok. We waited for the police (while holding up traffic and watching all of the thoughtful and caring people driving by honking at us). Only one person asked if we were ok. Gotta' love Greenville. Ugh. Anyway, everyone's ok and cars can be fixed. I called the nurse at the OBGYN to see if she thought I should get checked out. I've not had any cramps or spotting and Josh is moving like usual so she said just to take it easy, monitor myself and to call if something changes.

Matthew wrecked his car while working last week and then I had my little fender bender today....Robert: be careful!! Our poor mother can't handle news of another car accident! :)

Speaking of Joshua, he's growing like a weed! My baby bump has just sprouted in the past week or two. It's crazy!! Other people are starting to notice that I'm pregnant and not just chubby. ;) That's fun. :)

Have a good weekend everybody. I'm off to nest....uh, I mean rest. ;)

Monday, January 5, 2009

Happy New Year

Our new year was uneventful. I did manage to stay awake until midnight! That hasn't happened in a few years.

We've been busy since Christmas. We came home from Gasburg for 2 days (long enough to do laundry) and went to Yorktown for a few days. After coming home from there, I made the long drive to Eden to spend a few days with both sets of grandparents. Tiffy and her friend Shannon met me up there and we celebrated New Year's Eve with Grandmom and Granddad. We all ate WAY too much and then crashed at 12:01. :) Shannon brought her Wii Fit and we all had fun trying it out. It was more fun watching everyone else trying to hula hoop. Joshua didn't like it when I hula hooped. We did a little shopping in Martinsville and then I went back to Eden for the night. Grandma and I lounged around most of the day and she made my favorite for dinner! :) YUMMMMY! Aunt Brenda and Emily came by to visit for a few minutes. It was good to see them. Emily is getting so grown up! She's such a beautiful young woman. I came home Saturday and David and I spent the evening at the grocery store. Ugh. I hate going to the grocery store.

We had a check-up at the OBGYN today. Didn't do much, pricked my finger (owie!) and listenend Joshua's heart beat again. Nice and strong! In the 150s and the midwife said everything sounded really good. I can't believe we're 21 weeks already! It's been fun feeling him move more and more. David was listening to Joshua's heart beat with the stethescope the other night and all of a sudden, he heard a loud thump. It was Joshua poking back! :) We just sat there and watched him kick around in there. It's so weird to see my belly move around. It'll be even crazier the bigger he gets. Speaking of bigger, here's a pic of the baby bump.

I went and got my books for school today. I'm not very excited about starting back again. Our winter break is just long enough for me to get good and lazy and happy being home. I only have 2 classes this semester so hopefully I won't be so stressed that I go into early labor! ;) I have the second part of my LAST anatomy!!! and Chemistry. I took Chemistry in high school but we never did much and I certainly don't remember any of it! I might be looking for a tutor soon.

Oh, here's a picture of Joshua's Poppa and Grammy proudly displaying their t-shirts. :)