Thursday, December 25, 2008

MERRY CHRISTMAS!

Merry Christmas to all! Now the day is almost over and I still don't feel like it's Christmas time! It doesn't help that it was 60-70 degrees today and extremely muggy. The clouds looked like they should have been dropping snow, but they were merely holding moisture in the air. It does not help that Albert is at home (our house) and we are not. It just doesn't feel like Christmas.

Nonetheless, the hope of Christmas is alive and well. Christmas is the day that we celebrate the gift the creator of the universe gave us and the hope we have of eternity with Him. We have been reading the first part of Luke 2 in preparation for Christmas. I can not help but think of the individuals who were involved in that special nights. I think of Mary, the young girl was in labor and riding on a donkey. Now, I did ride in the car for an hour or so while in labor with Boaz, but I do not think it compares to riding on a donkey! I wonder what she was thinking. And Joseph, he probably delivered animal babies previous to this, but I have to wonder what was going through his mind! Was he a frantic first time father or was he calm and collected, confident in the adventure ahead? Mostly I have thought of the shepherds. It's no wonder the angel told them not to fear! I picture them sitting around a bonfire in the middle of a very dark field with only sheep around, then all of a sudden another being appears and talks to them. Yep, I would be fearful. Then, to receive such an amazing message. Their urgency in finding our Savior is the perfect response. 

I hope this Christmas has been special to you and you have reflected on the blessings and trials God has brought you through this year.

MERRY CHRISTMAS from the Ducks.

Happy 1st Birthday Boaz!

I have been thinking about this post for a few days, but have not taken the time to write it. I can't believe my baby boy is 1 year old already. This year has truly flown by! On the evening of the 21st, I was reminiscing of labor starting, not having my bag packed, Albert just getting home from work, spending a little too long in the car, and our sweet baby boy's delivery. Even in the moment it seemed surreal, but it really doesn't seem like so much time could have passed already.

This past year has been full of fun adventures with our little man. Here's a little rundown of our roller coaster:
  • bili lights
  • blood draws
  • cat scan
  • steam roller
  • 12 hour car rides
  • flying on an air plane
  • 15 hour car ride
  • crawling
  • furniture walking
It has been amazing to see Boaz and Canon becoming friends and starting to like each other. Each day seems to bring something new with our little boy. I can't believe our little guy is already on his way out of the "youngest child" spot and on to the "middle child." He is such a sweet little boy and each day is a treasure. He is still enjoying snuggling, being tickled and just being around family. What a special gift he has been!

(Pictures to come.)

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Observations of the South

So, I have not been gone from Florida for that long, but I seem to have forgotten everything that has to do with the weather here! This has made me laugh on several occasions. When we left Oklahoma it was 15 degrees with very strong and cold wind. I wore a t-shirt with a sweater over and jeans. For our first couple of stops and the car ride, this outfit was just right. Then we stopped for gas in Louisiana. As soon as I opened the door my hair started growing and I started sweating. I knew we were in LA without even having to ask! I pushed my sleeves up, went to the restroom and thought, "These people probably think I'm crazy for wearing a sweater!" Once back in the car I took the sweater off and was more comfortable at our next few stops. The thing that keeps making me laugh is that that t-shirt is one of the two t-shirts that I packed for myself. Boaz arrived with two short sleeved shirts/outfits and some short-sleeved undershirts, Canon arrived with only short-sleeved undershirts. What was I thinking? I brought one pair of flip-flops and one pare of capris for myself and Canon has a couple of pairs of Crocs to keep his feet cool. Who travels to Florida without capris and flip-flops???? We'll just blame it on the pregnancy brain. Along with only having real winter clothes, it has been in the mid 70s all week. Every time I go to get dressed I just laugh..... which short sleeved shirts are we going to wear today? Well, I have had to do a little shopping and we are not melting any more. Of course it is only 55 degrees today with some cool wind. My family is freezing to death and I am thinking that the boys and I will wear all of our sweaters today, just to make sure we didn't pack them and never use them! HA! Oh, it's fun to be in the south!

Here are a couple of other things that are catching my attention: 
  • These people drive like maniacs! I'm not sure where they are going, but they are in a hurry! After driving on base where the max speed is 35 mph, I'm just not used to going much faster. I'm sure I'll adjust. 
  • I'm not sure how anyone has straight hair with this humidity. My hair is working beautifully! But I'm not sure how anyone has straight hair here. 
  • You can always buy flip-flops in Florida.
  • Sweaters go on sale at the beginning of winter.
  • Winter last a couple of weeks and I'm hoping those weeks overlap with while we're here.
I'll add more as I laugh at them!

A few more updates

I wrote previously about some of the big events coming up in our family. Here are a few updates:

  • Becca has had her baby. She went in to be induced at midnight on December 10th. Everything went well and Kylar Cole was born at 5:37 p.m. He weighed in at 8 lbs. 7 oz. He was having trouble breathing at first and had to go to the Neonatal Intensive Care Nursery. Once his breathing evened out he was given back to Becca. Then he started turning yellow and had to go under the lights for his billiruben. They were hoping to come home on Saturday, but were not able to come home until Monday. They got home about 30 min. after we arrived Monday evening. He is a little cutie and a good snuggler!
  • Nan's heart cath had been postponed for a couple of weeks. The doctor has to bring her potassium level up before being able to perform the procedure. She also has a DNC on the horizon. I do not think this will be scheduled again until after the heart cath is performed and everything is going well again. Nan and her daughter came in town for Boaz's second 1st birthday party and we have really enjoyed visiting with them.
  • Albert is on his deployment. It turns out that he will be at our house for two whole days over Christmas. We are really missing him and talk about him all the time. The boys and I have really enjoyed having our web cam and being able to see Daddy while we talk to him some. Though our connections are not great, that little bit of face time has been awesome!
I think that is all for the updates for now. Just know that things are a little tense and a little crazy here in the south!

We've arrived!

Nearly a week late, I am finally updating again. We arrived in Pensacola last Monday. My Dad flew in on Sunday, we packed and loaded up the van and headed out at 2:45 Monday morning. The boys were amazing travelers. I could not have asked for better behavior. They both stayed awake for an hour or so after being put in the car. Canon needed a potty break before he could go back to sleep, so our first stop was around 3:15 or so. After that they both drifted off and slept for a while. Dad woke up with a headache and was having trouble staying awake, so I took over just before 4:00 a.m. All of the boys slept until about 7:00 and I drove us through Dallas. I still can't believe I survived that! We stopped around 8:00 for breakfast and to stretch our legs and fill up the van. We rode on for a couple of hours and took another potty break or two. Traveling with a potty training toddler is quite an adventure! One of the highlights of our trip was stopping in Louisiana for lunch and meeting my Grandma, aunt and cousin. Canon and Boaz really enjoyed that stop! After lunch the boys drifted off for another nap (they both napped in the morning as well) and we continued to Pensacola. I knew we would start falling apart near the end of the trip and this was the case. When the boys woke up from their naps they were nearly done with their car seats. When it started getting dark again, we were all ready for change. We arrived in Pensacola at about 5:30 p.m. 15 hours worth of traveling with two toddlers, a dog, a pregnant woman and no DVD player was quite an experience. This is not a task that just anyone would volunteer to undertake and I am so thankful my Dad was willing to tackle the drive for us. 

So, we are here and adjusting to the weather and thankful to not have to turn around and head home any time too soon.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Boaz's first 1st Birthday party

^ Here's our little guy with belly full of cake! What could be better?
^Canon really enjoyed the cake! He's always up for cake, but actually left some on the plate after the icing was gone.
^Boaz was a little hesitant about digging in, but after Albert pulled some apart with a fork, he was more than happy to dig in!
What is that? Do I get to play with it? Boaz was not sure what to do with the cake at first, but Canon gave him a good example to follow!


We had a fun time celebrating Boaz's birthday. We (Canon) opened his presents after opening our Christmas presents. Bo didn't really know what to think of everything, but really enjoyed the boxes and wrapping paper. After digging into the cake, he cried when I took it away. I think he would have eaten the whole thing if he were allowed! 

Happy first 1st birthday Boaz!

Pictures

Christmas 2008 
We had to celebrate early because we will be apart for the 25th. We had a fun time eating our Christmas pancakes made by Daddy, opening presents and attending a squadron Christmas party. Canon is still talking about popping the bubbles and playing at Daddy's work. I think that was the highlight of his day!
The boys got some fresh haircuts for the Christmas season. They were both looking pretty scrappy, but it is way too cold for head shaving!
Here is a very delayed Halloween picture. We bought the boy's costumes at Babies R Us and made Albert and my costume. 
Canon received a helmet for his birthday but he grew out of it pretty quickly, so this is his new helmet. He thinks it's pretty cool.
Boaz is standing all over the place these days. This picture was taken on his 11 month birthday.


Sorry for the overflow of pictures. I finally learned how to upload pictures on my new computer and can now update you on our changing family. I hope you enjoy them!

Please Pray

In regards to my Recovering and Jumping post, things are starting to unfold. We are on the eve of Albert's deployment and I am on the verge of tears. Some people say that you just get used to it, but I haven't yet. I so enjoy having my husband home and hate the hours and weeks and days we are apart. This time will really be hard. Canon has needed a lot of extra Daddy Time the last few days and is not happy when Daddy goes to work or anywhere else that Canon can not go. We will not be a whole family for Christmas or Boaz's first birthday. Albert will probably miss Boaz's first steps. Ugh, the list goes on...... 

Another topic on my mind is my sister's induction. She went to the hospital at mid-night to be induced. The started her on pitocin after getting checked in and there she waits. Last that I heard she was dilated to 3 cm. I am not sure what to think about all of this and have determined that holding my tongue is the least sinful approach at this pointe.

In addition to this medical situation, my dear Nan is having some issues with her heart. She is having a heart cath done on Wed. and has some other medical concerns to note. 

Please keep both of these women and our family in your prayers. The next couple of months will be a bumpy ride. I do know that God is working all of these things for His glory and honor and praise and I pray that we will praise HIM in this storm.

    

So Sweet

Albert has been doing a lot of research towards a new car. This has been a topic of conversation several times over the last couple of weeks. We have had only one car for about a year now and know that a second car will be useful upon our move. While talking about a new car the other night, Canon said he would give Daddy a new car. We asked if he had any money to help us pay for the car and he said "yes". We told him to go to his room and get his money, when he came out he had his remote control car. He told Albert that he could take this new car to work. A little while later he came out with a little box car that he calls a "police car" and told Albert that he could take this "new car". 

I just love having little boys!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Recovering and jumping

I think I have finally recovered from the grease fire. I am very thankful the fire was contained and did not cause any permanent damage to anything besides the turkey. Since last Thursday Albert and I have super cleaned the oven. Burned grease is not easy to remove! And, I have baked a few things while holding my breath. I am still not certain that pregnant women should be in the kitchen unsupervised, but I am trying out another turkey right now. We do still need to eat! Anyway, I was quite shaken up by the whole thing and very hesitant to turn the oven on again. I am glad it is working well and not smoking or smelly any more.

In other news, things have been quite crazy around here. I read several blogs of moms with several children, and they have some very crazy times. I do not have several children yet, but we seem to be creating our fair share of craziness. Yesterday morning Canon and I had BSF (Bible Study Fellowship). We had about 16 minutes to get there when I was heading towards the gate to leave the base. That's when I noticed two military police cars sitting right by the exit gate. Any military wife knows what this means....... random car search. I have had this done before when entering the base one morning, but leaving the base in the morning....... what do they think I will have on board? And, why do the care if I am headed OFF base? Anyway, with a deep breath I followed the officer as he directed me on where to park. I have been working on setting a better example for Canon and did not want him to dislike military police as I do...... I took my seat belt off and opened the door so that I could quickly open all of the doors, trunk, glove compartment, "anything that opens" is what they told me last time. *Keep in mind that I am driving a van* Then, the officer asks me if I have any children with me. "Yes" I say with a deep breath of relief.... is this my ticket out of a search? YES it was!!! I was so excited. The officer told me that I needed to get going then. It was 40 degrees and windy and I now had 10 minutes to make it to BSF. I was so relieved that he let me go! What a blessing our children are. 

Now looking ahead..... I feel like I am standing on a cliff just waiting for several things to happen. Maybe I am more feeling on "Pause" right before the climax of the movie. Either way, we have some BIG things coming up in the next few weeks and could really use your prayers. Thankfully I only had one tear fall while thinking and talking to a dear friend about all that is about to happen, so I'll try to give you just the facts. On Dec. 10th my sister is going in to be induced. On Dec. 12th Albert leaves for 2 months, but will be home on Christmas day. On Dec. 15th the boys and I leave for Pensacola for about a month, we will be there on Christmas day, thus we will be away from Albert even though he will be at home! On Dec. 22nd Boaz will turn 1 year old. I guess I feel the weight more because I am pregnant and more emotional than normal..... either way, I do not want to walk through the next month alone! Please keep our family in mind and feel free to contact us some over the next couple of months.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Happy Anniversary!

In addition to yesterday being Thanksgiving, it was also Albert and my 4th anniversary. We were not able to do anything special yesterday, and I ruined our special meal, but the last four years have been special. I can not believe how quickly they have gone by. This last year has probably been our most difficult, and we are both hoping this new year will come with less trials. While these trials have brought us closer together, they have been very difficult. I am thankful God has blessed me with a husband who loves me, provides for me, protects me, and loves our little ones. More than that, I am thankful that he loves God and desires to bring our family closer to Him. 

Our first year of marriage we moved half way across the country and endured pilot training. Our second year of marriage we moved an hour and a half south, delivered our first baby boy and endured more pilot training. Our third year was full of deployments every other month and a lot of time apart. Our fourth year brought our second baby boy, crazy hormone swings and several more months apart. The coming year will bring our third baby, a move and more months apart. We are excited to share the next year's adventures together and with you.

Pregnant Women in the Kitchen

I think it would be safer for all involved if pregnant women were not allowed in the kitchen. Or at least this pregnant woman might need to take a bit of a break from cooking. On Wednesday I baked some oatmeal raisin cookies. I have made these cookies several times before, but this time they ran all over the stone and look a bit more like pancakes than cookies. They still taste great, though are not very soft, but they look like pancakes. 

Yesterday was even worse! I woke up early to have a little time before all of the cooking began. The 22 lb turkey was in the oven by 8:00 and I was mixing everything up. After a couple of hours I hear a lot of popping in the oven, I opened the door and everything looked fine. So, I continued with the sides. All of the sudden my eyes are watering like crazy and I can hardly breath. Let me back up a minute first. The last time I went grocery shopping I bought a couple extra gallons of milk so that we would not run out over Thanksgiving. I put the two extra gallons in the deep freezer. I took one out on Wed. for it to start defrosting. Yesterday, in the midst of mixing and cooking, I noticed that the milk jug had cracked and there was cream all over the shelf. So, Albert was outside hosing out the milk jug when I started smelling smoke. I opened the oven to find 6-8 inch flames. Yes, a grease fire started in our oven. I rushed over to the window to yell to Albert that there was a fire. He ran in and got the fire extinguisher and put it out. I was so upset! All of that work down the tubes. Albert called the base police to let them know that we had a fire and it was out. He was so shaken up that he gave them the address of our rental property in Enid. So, the police never came. We ended up taking all of our sides over to our friend's house and cooking them and eating there. We were still full without the turkey, but it just wasn't a complete meal. I think the meat on the inside of the turkey would have been fine, but it was not finished cooking, so Albert just threw it away. A 22 lb. turkey went in the trash! My stomach still turns at the thought of this. At least we all got out safely and the house did not burn down. It was a rough day though.

Monday, November 24, 2008

I'm sewing pink!

I have been looking for material for baby girl bedding for a couple of months. I already had material for a baby boy's crib bedding, so there was no need to search for that. Well, after looking at several different store's options of pre-made bedding and fabric ideas, I finally found the perfect material! Albert, the boys and I went to Hobby Lobby on Saturday to look for a couple of things and this material seemed to jump out at me. I quickly found some coordinating colors and cut the material when the little boys went to bed. Today I sewed it together and could not help but smile knowing that I do not have to give this pink away! I have sewn a few other girl blankets and burp cloths for baby gifts and I liked them and considered keeping them. But this was a project to keep in our home. The quilt is almost finished. I will probably work on it a little more tomorrow and hopefully I'll figure out how to upload pictures on my new computer. We are very excited about the dynamics of our family that await!

I will post an ultrasound pic soon!

Friday, November 21, 2008

Differences in Pregnancies

When I was pregnant with Canon, all I ever heard was that every pregnancy was different and everything was normal during pregnancy. So, here is a run down of the similarities and differences in my 2 1/2 pregnancies.

First pregnancy:
  • I got sick (threw up) sporadically and only for the first 12 or 13 weeks. Then, I did not get sick at all.
  • I gained about a pound a week starting at 4 weeks. :(
  • My face and whole body were a little swollen.
  • Canon moved a ton and I could always see him moving across the front of my belly.
  • I needed a lot of sleep.
  • My hair got really thick.
  • I sat around a lot.
  • I read every book, magazine, website available that talked about pregnancy, birth and newborns.
  • Delivered two days late via Cesarean section.
  • Had a 9 lb baby boy.
Second Pregnancy:
  • I got sick very sporadically throughout my whole pregnancy.
  • I gained 26 lbs on D-day.
  • I stayed pretty small, though my face did swell a little.
  • Boaz moved a lot, but he always made me feel motion sick because he was punching my organs.
  • If I took a nap in the afternoon, I had a hard time falling asleep at night.
  • I played with Canon a lot and sat around a little.
  • My hair thickened up quite a bit.
  • I tried to keep up with "Your Pregnancy week by week." But often lost track of what week I was on.
  • Delivered three weeks and 2 days early with a 4 hour labor.
  • Had a healthy, 7 lb 2 oz baby boy.
Third Pregnancy:
  • I have not been sick at all, though hugged the toilet once for good measure.
  • I've gained about a half pound a week.
  • I feel like I am still pretty small, my face still looks normal and I can still see some muscles in my arms.
  • I have felt the baby move for the last few weeks.
  • I am functioning with about the same amount of sleep as I needed with Boaz.
  • I am not sitting around much at all!
  • My hair is falling out like it is summer time.
  • I rarely know what week I am  on or what is going on with the baby.
  • I thought my due date was 4/4, the doc moved it to 4/17, the ultrasound said it was 4/11.
  • We are hoping to VBAC a baby GIRL sometime in April!

Crazy Morning

This morning was crazy! Albert went to work a little after 6:00 am. He returned home right around 8:00 am to help me finish getting the boys ready and leave for the doctor's office. We made it to the appointment about 20 minutes early to fill out paper work and wait...... and wait....... and wait. We waited until an hour past my appointment time to be called back. After the ultra-sound, which took 20 minutes, we rushed Albert back to work, rushed home to eat lunch and quickly left for Canon's doctor's appointment. Have you ever tried to rush a 2 year old or one year old to eat their lunch? This is not really a practical idea. So, I put the rest of Canon's lunch in a bag and brought Boaz's bottle with us. We made it to the doctor's office right on time and waited some more. It has been quite a tiring morning and I will shortly be enjoying a nap.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Grocery stores

The grocery store has become one of my least favorite places to visit. I enjoy having food in our home, but obtaining it is such a task. The other day I needed cubed ham and some bananas. Dilemma: Do I take the time to put the boys in a cart and gather my two items or do I let Canon walk, carry Boaz and pick up my two items. I decided on the latter. I really was hoping I would bump into a friend and ask them to wait in the van with the boys while I ran in quickly, but this did not happen. So, off we go. Canon is always excited for the opportunity to walk through the grocery store and his curiosity gets the best of him. Boaz does not hold on one little bit and is getting quite heavy. I had my I.D. card and debit card easily accessible and picked up our two items. Thankfully I did not need milk! We made it to the check out line and I went completely crazy and thought I'd try the self check-out since I only had two items....... hello and two children attached to me. What was I thinking?!? I completely forgot that I was going to have to search for the bananas on the produce page and Canon was going to notice the Tic Tacs....... I was ready to leave. We did survive and eventually made it out to the car and back home. When we got home I unpacked the bag and noticed there was more there than just my ham and bananas. Apparently the bag that I had chosen, due to it already being open, had two packages of batteries in it. I felt terrible that I had not noticed before, but have decided there is nothing I could have done. I did not see the person who checked out before me and I'm not sure there would be a way to track them down. So, we will just enjoy our free gift for surviving the grocery store and probably will not be making any trips like this when the baby arrives.

Now, today I lost my mind again! The boys have been sick for several days. Boaz's nose started to run yesterday and he has been coughing for several days and Canon has been on the illness roller-coaster. One day he has a fever, the next he is fine, coughing, runny nose, he has the works. So, Monday he stayed on the couch all day. This is the day I normally go grocery shopping. I have been wanting to switch to Thursdays, but thought I would go on Monday and Thursday to make the transition without running out of food. I had a doctor's appointment at 11:00 and was sure I could get all of my grocery shopping done before that. Until my little guy came up so sick. So, we have been scrounging for food the last few days. Albert has needed the van because he has to go to work so early and it is 40 degrees or below outside and we have stayed home to clear up this cold. This morning Albert needed a vehicle again, but planned to ride with a friend to their meeting. This left me the van for the morning. I was again hoping to get several errands done including grocery shopping and a little Christmas shopping. The curve ball came first thing this morning when Canon woke up with a fever and Boaz was ready for his morning nap at 7:30. I thought this would be another day at home without any food. OK, we do have some food, but not the meals I had planned on fixing. By mid-morning both of the boys were more playful and seemed to be feeling a little better. Boaz had taken a nap and Canon's fever had gone down. I decided we would run to Target and the Commissary. I could use our stroller to help confine the germs and get a couple of things done. I did not take into consideration the insane wind or the fact that it was 41 degrees outside. These are not exactly the best conditions for dragging out your sick kids! We made it through Target with good temperaments and Albert called just as I was buckling the boys into the van to head to the grocery store. He has been my hero this week. He said he would watch the boys while I went to the store. This never happens and it has happened twice this week! So, I brought the boys home, rushed to the grocery store, found a parking spot, went inside, and realized that I did not have my list! I have worked very hard the last few weeks to make sure my list is organized and complete. This morning I brought it with me to Target, put it in the sunshade so I could check off what I needed and what I picked up. Took the stroller out of the van to have room for the groceries and left the list at home. My grocery trip that should have been relaxing felt like I was digging for dinosaur bones in my memory. I don't think I've thought that hard to remember something in quite a while. This coupled with all of the elderly who have been retired for 50 years clogging up the aisles led to another frustrating shopping trip. I checked the list when I got home and to my surprise, I remembered almost everything. I did have my Thanksgiving list with me, thankfully! But still, very frustrating. 

Here are a couple of really funny shopping stories: LoraLynn, Kim. Hope you enjoy.

Furry friend

The boys and I spent the month of May in Colorado with my in-laws. When we returned home, my father-in-law parked their van in the neighbor's carport, no one lived there at the time. While they were here, the base lawn care service came by to mow the vacant home's yard. They were unable to mow the back yard because of my in-laws being parked there. So, my father-in-law mowed it. In the midst of mowing, he comes back to the house and tells my mother-in-law and me that we have to come see something. The grass had been pretty tall and Randy uncovered a nest of some sort of rodent. We could not tell what they were, but felt terrible for disturbing their nest. So, Becky, my sweet, farm-girl mother-in-law, thought we needed to bring them in. I was apprehensive. They were leaving in the morning and I had no desire to care for 3-4 little rodents. We collected a box and several towels and Becky took them out of the hole. Come to find out there were 7 babies. We went to Wal-mart to get some kitty milk for them and ran into a lady that is a vet-tech. She said they were probably baby bunnies and they had little to no chance of surviving in captivity. That even with the very best care, something could startle them and they would die. She also said that the mother bunny only comes back at night to feed them. So, we headed home with our kitty milk and attempted to feed the bunnies. In the morning, we put them back in their hole and laid sticks across the top to see if there was any action from the mama. Becky and I had many conversations about the bunnies. I think she thought I was just going to let them die. While I did not want to care for them, I could at least check on them. After a few days their eyes opened and I could tell they were getting fatter. It seemed that we did not bother the mama and she was still coming back to feed them. After a couple of weeks the nest was finally empty! I was so happy about this. I figured either a snake at them or they hopped away. Either way, I did not have to worry about them any more. 

We have had a few bunny sightings since then. Occasionally we'll see one dart off out of the back yard at night or something like that. Well, a little while ago I was sprinkling some old produce in my flower beds when a little cotton tale came shooting out from under a dead azalea. This happened right as my neighbor said hello, so I was quite startled! It was fun to see the little bunny though and think that possibly it was one that we looked after in June.

Blogging Brain

Lately I have not been blogging much because I have not been able to think of much to write about and when Albert is home, I try to not sit on the computer as much. Well, today I went to the grocery store by myself and actually had a little time to think. I could not think too much because I forgot my list......... yes, that was frustrating, but I did let my brain wander a little.

I don't think I've written much about my thoughts on Boaz's cat-scan. It was a precautionary measure all along. The doctor said if he was not walking along the furniture by his 12 month appointment and his head continued to stay in a higher percentile than his body, she would like to do a cat-scan to make sure there wasn't anything extra growing up there. I left the appointment feeling a bit like I had failed Boaz as a mother. He was not physically where he needed to be, was this because I had not worked with him enough? Now that I am not reading "What to expect the first year" I don't even know what he should be doing or when. I mean, I knew he was behind, but I didn't think he was that far off. Also, I have not had any concern for the size of his head. His brother and cousin both have very large brains and very big heads. A week or so after his appointment I ran the scenario by a friend from church who is a pediatrician and sees Boaz almost every week. Instantly she said that she had been concerned about the size of his head. This information coupled with the fact that my mom had a brain tumor when she was a teen made me feel a bit more urgent. I called Monday morning to set up the appointment. I also started thinking that if there was anything wrong and we did not find out until the beginning of the year, any treatment could run into a newborn baby's arrival and I am not sure if I could handle all of that at once. So, the sooner the better. Still, I was not expecting them to find anything, but I just wanted to get it over with.

The cat-scan went very smoothly. We were called on a Tuesday morning and asked if we could bring him in at 8:00 the next morning. This did not leave much time for worry, which was great. We had a little bit of a wait and the boys switched hands in the process. So, when the lady called Boaz back, Albert was holding him. Now, I completely trust Albert, but I wanted to know every detail of what they did to him and how he did and what the machine was like and if she would give me any info or indication....... well, this does not happen when you are sitting in the lobby! So, Albert took him back and I just smiled to keep from crying and felt like I was glued to my chair waiting for my baby to come back to me. Canon played nicely with the toys in the waiting room and I waited. Before I knew it, Albert and Boaz walked back in and said we were done. Ahhh, I was glad it was over. I became a little anxious and was slightly comforted by it taking so long to receive the results. I felt that if there was something on his brain, we would hear something quickly and if there was nothing extra, they would take their sweet time. Well, I was right! It was just over a week, and several calls to the Dr.'s office, before we finally heard that the scan came back and everything was normal and they would see us at his 12 month appointment.

That day Boaz seemed to start doing the things that caused the doctor to be concerned. He started sitting up on his own, crawling a little, and tries to pull up some. I'm so thankful that we have the technology and insurance to check out any concerns we have of our little ones.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Boaz Update

Boaz has been doing wonderfully. Ever since we had his cat-scan, he has been trying out more and more activities. For a couple of days I worked with him on sitting up on his own. Now, he is sitting up on his own all over the place. He has attempted crawling a few times, but still finds rolling faster. He is making a strong effort to pull up and gets up to his knees or one knee and one foot, but has not quite gotten up on both feet alone. He also has started jumping on his bottom. This is also his way of dancing. It is very funny! We have also been working with him on saying "Dada." He still has a little ways to go, but is trying very hard. Oh, and he has started to whistle a little. That is also very fun!

Canon Update

Canon has not had a ton going on the past couple of weeks. He has had a cold that has been going up and down. He has been pretty sick the last couple of days. Yesterday, he threw up right when we put the van in park at church yesterday. He has pretty much been laying around ever since. He woke up twice last night and has taken a couple of short naps today. I talked to the nurse this morning who informed me that everything they've been seeing is viral and to just treat the symptoms. I hope he wakes up refreshed in the morning and no one else gets this!

Baby Duck update

I had my fourth doctor's appointment today. I am 18 weeks and 3 days. The doctor's appointment was pretty uneventful. The boys have been sick, so Albert came home to take care of them. My doctor was running about 30 minutes, so I was thankful I did not have two sick boys with me. My blood pressure was fine and the baby's heart rate was 138. So, you have a little less than 4 days to get your guess in. Our ultra-sound is Friday morning at 9:00. I'm thinking our little one is a boy. What do you think?

Also, I've been feeling the baby move almost every day. That has really been fun.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Results finally

I received a phone call around 4:30 this afternoon that informed us that Boaz's cat-scan came back completely normal! This is such a relief. Today, Boaz sat up on his own a couple of times and has been trying very hard to stand up. This is great news as well. I guess Baby Bo is just on his own schedule and will not be rushed. It is great to know there is nothing extra growing in his brain though! Thank you for your prayers and concerns.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Boaz's cat-scan

Boaz's cat-scan went extremely well this morning. We got there right at 8 and had to wait a little while. But, once he was called back, it was over within 10 minutes! Albert took him back and I stayed with Canon. I felt like I was frozen in my seat just waiting for them to come back. Albert said Boaz did great! The lady strapped him to the table, sent him in the machine twice and that was it. Albert said he got a little agitated near the end but otherwise did great. I'm so thankful just to have it done. I'm hoping to hear results by tomorrow afternoon. I figure the longer it takes the less likely we are to have any issues. I will keep you updated as I find out more. Thank you for your prayers, Albert and I were both very relaxed and at peace this morning.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Please Pray

Hi guys, I'm not sure if anyone will read this before 8 a.m. in the morning, but I thought I'd post it anyway. Boaz's cat-scan was scheduled this morning for tomorrow morning at 8 a.m. We are having the cat-scan done to be sure nothing extra is growing on his brain. At his last doctor's appointment his head was in a much higher percentile than the rest of his body. Also, the doctor mentioned some great concern without knowing that my mom had a brain tumor when she was younger. Her tumor was not cancerous, but it was there for several years before detected. This is just a precautionary measure. But please pray that whatever the results are, they are very clear and the steps to take next are clear. Thank you in advance for your prayers.

In Christ,
The Ducks

Friday, October 31, 2008

Fresh Bread

I contest that there is nothing better then fresh, home-made bread, hot out of the oven. I just made a loaf of french bread to go with our dinner. I sliced a bit off right after taking out of the oven and it melted in my mouth! I don't think God created anything more delicious than that! I hope you get to enjoy this luxury some time soon! If you eat at our house the chances are in your favor!

Baby Duck

I have been thinking about this blog for a while, but obviously have not taken the time to write. Just want to give you an update on our little Ducky. We had an appointment on Oct. 23. Albert finally got to meet my doctor and we both really like her. The baby's heart rate was 146. This is right between where Canon and Boaz were at this time. So, my guess is a boy! We scheduled the ultrasound for November 21st and my next appointment is on Nov. 17. I felt the baby move a couple of weeks ago and have been feeling him move every few days. It is still very light, so I have to be laying on my stomach to feel him and know it is him. I think this is one of the most amazing parts of pregnancy. There's no other experience in live like feeling a baby move inside of you. I am thankful to experience this again. If you've never had a baby and wonder what it feels like, put your hand on your cheek, then rub your tongue against the inside of your cheek. This sort of resembles what baby movements feel like.... in a way. :) 

Almost every thinks or wants this little one to be a girl. I've had one friend say he/she is a puppy. I know he is wrong! Lisa said a boy and for now I agree with her. I don't think you guys are considering the facts this go around, you just want a little girl! So, if you haven't guessed yet, you only have a couple more weeks to get your guess in. Hurry up!

Friday, October 24, 2008

DADDY'S HOME!

I am happy to announce that Albert is back home. He got home Tuesday night around 7:30. This was about 4 hours late! But we were thrilled to have him walk through the door. We expected him to be home right around the time the boys woke up from their naps. Well, they both woke up early and we just sat around for a while twiddling our thumbs before deciding to go to the park. That turned out to be a good way to pass the time. He still wasn't ready (by work's standards) to come home, so we went home and started bath time. Right after the boys got in, Albert got home. They were so excited. Canon could hardly wait to get out of there! I let them stay up for a little while, then off to bed. Canon was sure to wake up at 5:15 to say good morning though. And, they were both up for a bit around 1:00 a.m. That was fun! We are thankful to have him back home though!

Get your guess in!

I had another doctor's appointment yesterday. I am very excited about my doctor! Albert got to meet her and he liked her too. Anyway, the baby's heart rate was 146 and I am 15 weeks today. At this same time, Boaz's heart rate was 140 and Canon's was between 167 and 148. So, now is the time to get your guess in. Do you think Baby Duck is a boy or a girl? Our ultrasound is November 21 at 9:00 a.m. You have until November 20 to get your guess in! Also, I think I felt the baby move a couple of days ago. I am looking forward to feeling him/her move more often! Hurry and guess!

Friday, October 17, 2008

Baby Duck

I have enjoyed keeping up with a few of my friend's who are having their first babies and have blogs dedicated to their pregnancy. I have not been able to keep track of this pregnancy well enough to have a separate blog about it, but will give little updates as the occur. Well, on 10.05.08 my belly seemed to jump out. I was just looking at the picture and I do not look as big in the pic as I felt that day. Though, I was likely holding my belly in for the pic. I don't think I've taken a single belly pic without tightening up my belly.... even at the end when it doesn't help. I guess it is just habit. So, today I am 14 weeks. I have a doctor's appointment next Thursday, which I am very excited about. At that appointment I will schedule the ultra-sound. I am really excited about this. So much sewing is hanging on that ultra-sound!


I have been slightly concerned about this pregnancy though. Obviously it has made me more of a worrier and much more likely to cry. With Canon I felt pretty normal, hormonally speaking. With Boaz I was grouchy and irritable more than I was with Canon, but still felt pretty good. With this little one I am more teary, but feel completely normal other than my belly swelling a little. In fact, at my first doctor's appointment, my doctor asked me if I was sure I was pregnant. I had been wondering the same thing and it still crosses my mind some days. With both of the boys I was sick sort of randomly. With Canon it was mainly at the beginning and Boaz was any time of day, but it would hit and be gone. I have only hugged the toilet one time with this pregnancy and it was just precautionary! That has been a huge blessing, but it makes me feel uncertain. After two doctor's appointments and two ultra-sounds, I have not heard a strong heartbeat or been giving a heart rate number. This is not comfortable. I am anxious to start feeling the baby moving and know that everything is OK. So, anyway, please pray that this baby is healthy and strong. I know that every pregnancy is different, but this one doesn't feel like a pregnancy at all. Maybe it's a girl or a boy! Ha! We'll just have to see. Until then, here is Baby Duck's first appearance. Treasure it because it will be a little while before another belly pic appears.

The Walker's Visit

Here are some pictures from our friend's visit. We had a great time... as you can see!

New Ride

This is our new ride. Actually, we bought it about two months ago and I have just uploaded the pictures..... but it still feels new! I researched double strollers for about a year or more when this beauty revealed itself to me. This stroller did cross my path while researching, but it seemed too expensive and a little cumbersome with buying the single stroller and the added seat. Well, our neighbor's bought it and gave me a demo. I liked it right away. A month or more later, our neighbor let us borrow their stroller for a couple of days so we could really try it out. Albert took it for a jog and I took it for a walk or two. It was so easy to push and use. I could not believe how smooth the ride was, especially for a double! So, after much conversation, we took the plunge and brought this ride home. It has been just the right stroller for us. My father-in-law asked if there was a way to attach a trailer to it....well, there's not, but Canon is learning to walk beside me or the stroller and learning the rules of walking freedom. So, enjoy the pics! Baby Bo hangs out in the front seat whenever Canon will have the option of walking or riding. He really enjoys both seats though.
This is one way to use the stroller with two toddlers or when both children are over 6 months old.
Here is another configuration. Bo was supposed to take a nap while we were out, so I went ahead and laid him in the bottom to protect him from the weather and let him get some rest.
Here is Baby Bo sleeping behind Canon.

Canon Says:

"Canon ride in back seat of car."

breath

"Canon put on seatbelt."

breath

"Canon drive to Papaw's house."




These sorts of post might become more frequent as his vocabulary and conversational skills increase! They are so fun for me.

F.Y.I.

The dryer works better when you turn it on!

Sunday, October 12, 2008

I've been tagged!

I must admit that I was secretly hoping to be tagged! I saw this on a ladies blog that I don't actually know, so I knew she wouldn't tag me, and I was thinking of just starting a fresh game, when I was tagged by Erica! Hope you enjoy.

THE RULES:* Link your tagger and list these rules on your blog.* Share 7 little known facts about yourself on your blog.* Tag 7 people at the end of your post by leaving their names as well as links to their blogs.* Let them know they are tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.


Hmmm..... The 7 facts are tricky!

1. I got my belly button pierced on my 18th birthday while visiting a friend out of state. This makes for a lovely belly button when pregnant! I took the ring out just before I met Albert and it has closed up on the inside, but not the outside. Oh yes, it looks nice to have two holes doing weird things on a big ole belly!

2. I have always wanted to have 3 boys and 1 little girl at the end! I am now anxious to see what God has in store for our family.

3. I've lived in 16 houses and 9 states in my life time.

4. I do not like to be alone.

5. I had softly wavy hair until puberty and now it changes curliness with each pregnancy. Along with my hair falling out and growing back in, it is really looking good!

6. I have been pregnant and/or nursing since November 2005.

7. I love ballet and am teaching a couple of small classes for friends on Thursdays.

Now I tag:

1. Kim

2. Lisa

3. Lindsay

4. Leatrice

5. Charlotte

6. Jill

7. Tara

Some of these guys don't know that I read their blogs, I hope they don't mind being tagged! I just realized that I mainly read blogs of people that I don't actually know.....Some of you need to hop to it!

Friday, October 10, 2008

Canon Says:

"Good job fire mama!"

"Good job fire truck mama!"

"Good job fire fighter mama!"

On Saturday a fire truck parade came past our house. We ran outside to watch the trucks. Later that day we went over to the fire house for Sparky's birthday party and a free lunch. Canon was able to sit on a fire truck and look at the firefighters. We even got the see them get dressed quickly and head out with their lights on for a power outage. On Wednesday we were in the back yard and noticed a class leaving the fire house. We waved to Sparky and a few firefighters, then decided to walk over. We were given the VIP treatment. Canon was able to give Sparky a high-five and take a picture with him. He was given the grand tour of the fire truck and the firefighter turned on the siren while Canon was in the seat. We even received a plastic fire fighter hat! Canon cannot get enough of this hat. Again, pictures will come later, but we have enjoyed Fire Prevention week.

Special Visit

We had a very special visit yesterday and today. We were thankful to host part of the Walker family in our home these past two days. We were stationed with Nate and Lindsay in Enid, for pilot training. They have been living in Washington since she was first pregnant with their little girl and I was about 5 months pregnant with Canon. We have tried to cross paths in Colorado a few times, but it just hasn't worked out. Well, thankfully, he was sent back down here for a few weeks of training and the family came along. We were so excited to have Lindsay and Alyssa come to our home yesterday. The kiddos played great together and I truly enjoyed catching up with Lindsay. We went to the park a couple of times and just hung out together. Between naps and eating, there wasn't much time for traveling the city!



God blessed us with some great connections and amazing friends during our time in Enid and I have been so thankful to keep in touch with so many of them so well. This is now the 6th family to visit us from Enid. Some came together, while they still lived there, on family stopped by while on a 5 hour layover in the city, and the Walkers came during training. We love reconnecting with these dear friends and seeing how much all of our families have grown. The original group has certainly multiplied! I'll post some pics from this special visit in the next few days. Here is a pic of all of our friends (minus 4 from church) from Enid with only one little one present.
To this group would now be added at least 10 babies and two in the oven in just 2 1/2 years!

Safe in the Fold

Jesus my rock, my refuge, my all
In you will I trust, in you will I call
And praise you forever for blessings untold,
Your right hand upholds me
Though stormy the way
Though thunders may roll
Your spirit of peace shines in my soul
The sky may be cloudy and the night may be cold,
Yet under your watch care
I'm safe in the fold
Your right hand upholds me,
I'm safe in the fold
I'm safe in the fold
All glory to you
I look to the day when I enter through
The gates to the kingdom and worship to you
There I will ever be
Safe in the fold
Your right hand upholds me
I'm safe in the fold
I'm safe in the fold
Your right hand upholds me
I'm safe in the fold (repeat)
-Sons of Thunder
This song has been an amazing source of comfort through trials and celebrations over the last few months. Some of the times that I have cried out this song the most have to do with the expectancy of our newest little one and Albert's deployments. The truth in this song has brought me so much comfort.
Albert's deployments are always a challenge. I tend to sing this song, on repeat, after we have dropped him off or am just having a really hard day. I seem to feel wrapped in Jesus' arms when this song is pouring out of my heart.
I don't think I've expressed the emotional journey I've been on the last couple of months. I feel like I am on the right path now, but I was stubborn in getting here! When we first thought we were pregnant the test was not strongly positive or negative. Since I only take tests when I am pretty sure (very late) I am pregnant, so that I'm not wasting money, I was very surprised and saddened. A week later I took another test and I was shocked by the result. Yes, I am a woman who is still working on having self-control over my emotions! I laughed out loud and the questions for God started rolling. There were several times that I was at home and in a semi state of panic and turned this song on. I know the words of this song are true. I know that God has a plan for our family and this baby, but I could not shake the questions. The responses we have received from people we know and complete strangers has not been completely encouraging either! I often think "are we in a relationship close enough for you to say that?" or "maybe I should just smile and change the subject." I don't think I've seen eyes get any bigger or questions about birth control and surprise shoot out of people's mouths any faster then over the last several weeks. Well, while I've been having a pitty party God has continued His work. Thankfully! He has humbled me again and again and again. So much so that I sometimes find myself slipping into the opposite mind frame of "I'm not worthy!" Well, I'm not worthy and I know that I cannot make it through one day with out completely relying on HIM. He has reminded me of dear friends who desperately want a baby and has shown me families with 5 children 5 and under, 5 children 4 and under, added 6 children in three years to the previous 4 children.....making 10 children. I'm not even sure how I found some of these blogs and women. God has truly led me to some of the work He is doing. It has been so humbling and encouraging. These blogs have made me feel like a wimp and capable. I'm not saying that I won't dip on the roller coaster of life. I am still a sinner, but at this point I am able to be safe in the fold of my Father's wing knowing that He is in control and I am happy about it!
Please don't feel that we are unhappy about our Little Duck's arrival. I can hardly wait for him/her to arrive. I already have great plans for the bedding and am brainstorming coming home outfits, rearranging drawers and closets.....I just was very over whelmed thinking of how I was going to survive in my own strength. Well, I'm not going to survive in my own strength! This family is something that only God can handle and He is willing to take the lead from me! What a blessing!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Potty Training!

Here is another small update on potty training. It is going quite well, though not complete. Canon has been dry for several days now including nap time and night time! At first I thought he was only staying dry at night because he woke up like four nights in a row and went potty in the middle of the night. But, he slept all night last night and was dry this morning. He also seems to be holding it longer during the day. I say that we are not completely done yet, because he is not initiating having to go. Sometimes he does, but usually I prompt him. This doesn't bother me though. Wet underwear is easier to change than a diaper. The one thing that keeps me on edge is underwear while sleeping. He has been taking his naps in underwear for a while and has stayed dry. But at night, I just can't go there yet. I mean, I don't think he'd care. He probably would wake up crying if he had an accident though. The main thing that I don't like is changing the sheets on the bunk beds! I mean, I love the bunks and think they were/are the most practical option for our family, but changing the sheets is a pain. So, I am preventing accidents by having Canon sleep in a diaper so that I don't have to change the sheets as often. Maybe this is lazy, but I have to stay sane somehow and changing the sheets makes me grumpy!

Sickness

We have been passing around quite an ugly cough over the last couple of weeks. I started out with a cough, sore throat and runny nose. Canon received this and added a fever in the middle of the night. Boaz now has the cough which sounds like it is ripping his throat open. Please pray that we are all well by the time Daddy is home. (and maybe a little before)

Canon's funny words cont.

Here are a few more funny things that Canon can be heard saying these days:

"Don't eat my pizza Lauren." This phrase came after a friend visited for dinner and he was not in the mood to share. It has come with correction!

"Good Job Mama!"

I need to write these down during the day so I can remember them! He is always cracking me up. One of the sweet things he says is, "Go see Daddy." A couple of weeks ago I woke the boys up about an hour after I laid them down, to pick up Albert. Now Canon would like to pick him up every night. I would too!

"Papaw fix it."

"Canon park more."

"Canon not potty anymore."

"Canon not play part anymore."

"Don't spank my anymore." This one is reprimanded!

I'll have to keep thinking.......

Election

I promise not to get very deep with this, but I just have to say something. I am always a little overwhelmed with politicians and election time. I hate the commercials and "pick a side" mentality that lasts so long before the big day arrives. I do not enjoy the bickering back and forth and pointing out each other's weaknesses and failures. Is this how I want my children to interact? NOO! Personally, I'd rather hear exactly what each person wants to do and I can figure out the differences between the candidates.

Any who, a friend recently said something along these lines and it really has stuck with me: With the economy the way it is and the election coming up, maybe Americans need to realize that Christ is the only stable thing that we can rely on.

I'm not sure if that's exactly what she said, but that has been my thought each time I hear about the race. I do have to wonder what it is going to take for each individual, American and Immigrant, to realize that Jesus Christ is the only one we can count on. If it means Senator Obama is president, then God's will be done. If it means Senator McCain is president, then God's will be done. If it means we all have to rent because no one can pay their mortgage, then God's will be done. What is the focus of our lives? Is it serving Christ? Or is it seeking the "American Dream"? Is anyone really living "The American Dream"? When Moses left Pharaoh's house and visited the Hebrews, he left the American Dream and counted it a blessing to be tortured and banished for Christ's sake. What are we willing to sacrifice for Jesus Christ?

Also, I think we need to strive to be debt free. Maybe we all need a little lifestyle change!

Manager of my home

A couple of weeks ago I blogged about several books that I have been reading. Well, I've put most of them down and decided to read one at a time. This is a much better plan as my crazy brain cannot remember where I left off and bookmarks seem to disappear. So, while I have not finished Managers of Their Homes, I am trying to continue to implement the concepts. It has been a great source of organization for my days. Sometimes they still seem long and like they start off in a hurry and fully loaded, but we seem to be accomplishing something.

In the past week I have gotten my sewing machine out on a few occasions. I accumulated a ton of material while in Colorado this summer and have been waiting for this deployment to put it all together. Well, obviously I have also been putting it off. So, a few days ago I put my fears aside and got the machine out. I have some great anxiety about my machine, I feel very nervous and unsure of myself when I think about using it. But, when I actually get it out, I can figure it out. So, anyway, one night I cut most of the materiel. Over the course of a few different sittings, I have put a lot of it together. I've made baby blankets and burp cloths and my Halloween costume. I still have some work to do, but this is great progress.

So, with the help of Managers of Their Homes, I have organized my evening activities. This has been such a relief. We already have our baths and things like that scheduled, but I felt like I was still floundering a bit after the boys went to bed. So, now I am cleaning and prepping for the next day for about 30 minutes. (This actually was not scheduled but seems to happen anyway.) Then, every third night I either read, sew, or visit the computer. This plan has relieved me of some guilt of wanting to read and sew as often as possible and has helped me restrict my computer time. I think I am enjoying it already!

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Just Teasing.....

The other night when I wrote like 10 blogs, I also read a ton. That's what sparked so many ideas. One of the blogs I read had 330 comments on one post. I can not even seem to get one comment! I don't know if this lady is famous or just well known or what, but obviously people have more to say to her then my readers have to say to me.......or maybe no one's reading my blog. Who knows, but I do enjoy comments. It makes me feel like I'm not just talking to my self. I think 330 is an extremely far stretch.....but maybe I'll hear from some of you! :)

So sweet and sad

Canon seems to have come down with quite a cold. I was sick last week with a sore throat and cough and he seems to have caught it. His eyes have been red and a little droopy and he has had MUCH less energy then normal. Tonight I was giving the boys a bath and Canon kept fussing at Boaz and just was not enjoying his bath, which is very out of the ordinary for him. So, I washed him quickly and wrapped him in a towel. I held him in my arms to settle him down and before I knew it, he was asleep! Naked, wrapped in a towel, with his brother still in the tub, sleeping. It was such a sweet moment. It took me a little while to decide what to do. I couldn't very well leave Boaz in the tub to lay Canon in bed. I didn't want to wake Canon up until I was ready to dress him and lay him down. I finally decided to lay Canon on the rug, wash Boaz quickly and take them both to bed. It's a good thing that was my choice because the water was cold! Canon is a little snuggler, but he almost never falls asleep in my arms any more. It was such a sweet moment that I hated to let it pass. After I got him dressed I asked him to just lay in his bed until I gave Boaz his bottle and laid him down, then I would rock him if he was still awake. Well, he was asleep of course. And my heart was a little sad. I hate it when he is sick, but I do enjoy his snuggles. Please pray that he feels better soon.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Little Boys, again

I knew there was more that I wanted to put on that post!

A few months ago Albert and I listened to a sermon that taught about the character of men. This has been a great inspiration for us in raising our boys and seeking out husbands for our daughters some day. The four roles of men are to be Providers, Protectors, Profits, and Priests.

Now, these are all roles that will hopefully be displayed throughout their lives and with everyone they run into, but they are definitely rolls that take training to develop.

My heart has smiled to see Canon learning some of these roles. He is not a Profit or a Priest yet, but he is learning a bit about being a Provider and Protector. He is often heard protecting Boaz and me. He will tell Boaz, "Do not pull my mama's hair." He has told me, "Do not eat BoBo's food." I think he might still be a little on the bossy side, but he is starting to look out for us.

He is a slight Provider with his willingness to help. He seems to enjoy having a job to do. I often ask him to put something in the sink or go find Boaz's paci. So, in this sense he is providing help.

Both of these are little, but hopefully will grow into an amazing young man some day.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

A day of work

Last Thursday was a good day of work. We started out the morning with a dance class for 3-6 year old kiddos, then proceeded to a class for 2 year old kiddos. The little guys were a little crazy and I'm not really sure that we accomplished anything in our time together. But, it was good. After dance, one of my dear friends taught my how to make apple sauce. Through another friend, I bought a bushel of Jonathan apples for only $15! The intention was to make applesauce and dried apples with these. And, my df did most of the work. Albert kept the kiddos entertained and we were able to make 12 quarts of applesauce and 8 trays of dried apples, with Albert's help, and clean up in about 2.5 hours. It was a very well spent morning and Canon, Boaz and I have enjoyed a little applesauce each day since! This was a very good, inexpensive form of entertainment for us with a great reward!

Special Visit

On Wednesday I received a phone call that was exceptionally exciting but had to be received with a great deal of reservation. Albert called and said, "There's a small chance I'll be able to come home tonight." What? I thought I heard him wrong. About 10 hours later he called and said they were on the ground, "here?", yes, here and he'd be ready to come home in a couple of hours. I could not believe it. I was immediately processing, yet trying not to, how am I going to get him back to work tomorrow? We have dance at nine and I'm supposed to make applesauce for a few hours after that. I don't want to leave him home and miss any time with him. Is he going to have to go in early? Maybe he won't have to be back in until later, will he be able to come with us? I did not overwhelm my dear husband with all of these questions, but patiently (with complete work of the Holy Spirit) waited until he got in the van and tried to calmly ask, "How long are you home?" I think I held my breath waiting for his reply. What an amazing relief to hear "I have the whole day off tomorrow." Um, Lord, why did I just rattle through all of that anxiety. I have got to learn to be patient and trust You!

So, we enjoyed a special, whole day with Daddy last week. He was actually able to spend two nights at home and we were re-energized for the rest of the time. Hopefully we can hold out. We sure are thankful for those hours of reconnection though!

Little Boys

I have recently been convicted of my seemingly lack of being mission minded. I want to reach out to others, but I am conflicted with reaching out and training within my home. I have not been able to discern whether this is the Holy Spirit or a lazy excuse, but I have recently found a great need and purpose to be working in my home. OK, so the peace or lazy excuse that I have found is this, I am reaching out to others by training my boys. They are the next generations leaders, husbands, employees, daddies, missionaries. If I train them well, only by a gift of God, they will have the potential to reach countless people. If we have 4 or 5 or however many children God wants us to have and they all know Christ and share Him with their children, that could easily turn into 20 Christians heading into the next generation and eternity with the Father. So, I must set about my work diligently and remember "where words are many, so are sins." That is a poor paraphrase, but it speaks loudly to me!

Boaz Randall

Our Baby Bo is getting so big. He turned 9 months old this week. I do have pics, but they will have to come later. Some of the things he has going on these days are:

- watching Canon play

- seeing that it is fun to bang toys on other objects or bang on Daddy's drums

- getting new teeth, he has the two middle bottom teeth now and enjoys biting my finger!

- sometimes waving hello and goodbye

- he is still my little steam roller

- feeding himself a bottle

- did I mention watching Canon? He will crank his neck all the way around to see that big guy!

- giving attacking kisses

- jabbering

- standing with help

Boaz is such a sweet and loving baby. He is extremely content and will sit on the floor and play with a favorite toy for half an hour or more. This is definitely a blessing to me! He loves to just be in the same room with someone he loves most of the day. And he still loves to snuggle! I'm so thankful for this little guy!

Canon's Sayings

Here is a run-down of some of the things Canon is saying these days:

-"I love you so much Bo."

-"It's heaby (heavy) mama."

-"It's fun!"

-"I miss you."

I'll have to edit this after he talks for a while tomorrow, I can't seem to remeber any more.

Here is a funny little story though. Our poor dog, Piper, gets the brunt of my frustration when I am pregnant. I love her very much, but I just do not handle her well sometimes. The other day she was being a little more crazy than usual. Here's how the conversation went:

me - "Piper, you're going to make me go crazy!"

Canon - "Piper, don't make my mama crazy!!"

I couldn't help but thank God for this bit of comic relief and smile!

Thoughts

I feel like I post only about my children and the funny and crazy things that happen in our home. Well, God is doing a mighty work around here too and I'd like to share some of that with you.

For starters, I feel like the Holy Spirit has been putting several blogs and families in my path with very large families. This started out when I met a sweet couple last September who were due to have twins in February. These twins would be numbers 4 and 5 of 5 children 5 years old and under. I was pregnant with Boaz at the time. Recently I read a book called "Managers of Their Homes." In the back of this book there are 24 family's schedules typed out. A large amount of these families have 8 children. Even more recently I have stumbled upon SEVERAL blogs written by women who have 6, 8, and 10 kiddos. Most of them are middle school age and under. Frequently these families have newborn babies or are expecting a new arrival. These families are mixed with home grown little ones and adopted little ones.

Now, Albert and I have talked a fair amount about adoption, birth control, future babies and the like. We definitely feel like God is calling us to care for many children. When I was pregnant with Boaz, before any one knew, we found out that a young cousin was expecting a baby. We talked and prayed over this and offered to adopt this baby. As you know, this did not go through. Since having Boaz, we thought we'd like to wait a little while for our next bundle of joy and talked about looking into foster/adoption for number 3. God obviously has other plans and our own "home grown" number 3 will be arriving in April. We are excited for this little one's arrival but are very........well, I'm not really sure how I feel.

For those of you who have kept up with me on facebook, you know that I went through quite a struggle a few weeks ago. I have to admit that I have already been on an emotional journey and feel quite silly when I read of these ladies having many more children than 3, but this is still a big time in my life. I have struggled with wondering how in the world I will care for three children under three years old and clean my house and use my first energies for my husband. How am I going to care for them when Albert is gone? Why has God decided to give us another little one so soon? I have shamefully even gone so far to ask God if he is really sure this is a good idea. I feel like some of these concerns at least have a little backing. I had a cesarean with Canon and every piece of medical reporting says that the next baby should not be due less than 18 months out from a cesarean, especially for trying a VBAC. I felt like we already risked it once with Boaz and is this time going to be safe? I know that all of my questioning is a complete lack of faith in God and a desire to rely completely on myself and the doctors. But, I must be honest, this is where my thoughts have been. I have been completely reminded/convicted/challenged to rely completely on God. This is the battle/lesson that I wrote about on facebook. I cannot make it through one single day without God. Even now, with just the two and being pregnant. There is no way that I can eat enough or sleep enough to have the energy I need to do all that needs to be done in one day. Only the intervention of the Holy Spirit will fill that bucket. I am still learning this each day.

As I continue to learn more about parenting my boys and shepherding their hearts, I see that the task is even more overwhelming. I have a terrible memory already, how can I memorize all of the scripture that I need to know to train my boys in the way they should go? Maybe at this point I should just highlight and bookmark them. It wouldn't be so bad to pull out my Bible for some clear direction from God's word for the boys. Yes, Boaz is already needing some redirection and Canon is well into the years of discipline.

So, among my thoughts of worry and despair, I have a great many things to be thankful for. One is that I have not been physically sick from pregnancy one single time. This is completely from God's provision. With the boys I was sick very randomly and throughout pregnancy. To be 11 weeks and not be sick a single time is amazing. I am also thankful that my boys are so sweet and loving. Canon will often tell the baby good morning and kiss my belly. He is learning to be such a good big brother, I just have to be patient with him. Boaz is so loving as well. He has no idea about the baby, but he looks at his big brother with such adorning eyes. He seems to long to interact and play with him. Canon can often be heard making very loud noises and Boaz has recently started to enjoy mocking these. I'm sure the baby will start moving to the noises of his/her big brothers soon enough. Another thing I am thankful for is that God has helped me to persevere in a time of great trial. I have a very difficult time dealing with the emotional yo-yo of Albert being gone and the business of our home, but God has given me great success with little things throughout the day and big emotional things. I still have a long way to go, and I'm not sure that that makes sense to the reader, but just know that God is definitely working on me and I hope the fruit will start showing soon.

Our God is a mighty God and I am excited to train the next generation of daddies and mamas and husbands and wives. Right now we just have husbands and daddies to train, but maybe we'll have a little lady mixed in in the future.
In Christ,
Robin

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

More Doctor's Appointments

The boys had well-baby visits today. Let me just say that I was not happy about the wait. I am not feeling well, just a sore throat and headache, but I am more irritable than normal. So, waiting is not my friend. Well, again we were early! Twelve minutes early at check-in. This is an achievement in itself with two little ones and a 9 am appointment. And we waited and waited. Canon played a little bit but then was getting out of control, so we practiced self-control while waiting and waiting some more thinking they would surely call us back any time now. Three families were called back and checked out and we were still waiting. We had to be next! They call our name, we weigh the boys and I check the time, we waited an hour past our appointment time just to be called back to a room! At this point I was a little irritated, then our favorite nurse, the reason we still go to this office was not even there, then we waited another 25 minutes for the doctor to come into the room. We didn't even need shots! But, we did survive.

So, here's the info we received. Canon weighs 34 lbs. and is 35 inches tall. He is getting a referral to an Optometrist for a possible lazy eye. So, we might have some pirate pictures coming up. Otherwise he is doing great and she seemed to be impressed that he is pooping in the toilet.

Boaz weighed 18 lbs. 6 oz. I'm not sure how long he is, but I have it written down and his head was 46 cm. around. She always seems concerned about him. This time she was worried that his head is growing so much faster than the rest of his body and he is not pulling up or cruising. Last time she was worried that he had not gained much weight and was not sitting or putting weight on his legs. I feel like we always leave with a homework assignment with this little guy. I really feel a peace about his big brain. I think if she saw Canon, Boaz and Cousin Cody, she would realize that they all just have giant brains because they are geniuses! But, we'll see what needs to be done.

I have a great deal of anxiety leading up to doctor's appointments for the boys. I feel like all of my mothering and training is on the line and I could be tested in any area, am I prepared? Have I worked on the right things? Where am I lacking? She did ask Canon to show her his ears, nose and teeth. Of course he knows those. So, I feel like we got an A on body parts identification. I always feel like I need to show off everything the boys are capable of. Does anyone else feel like this? With Boaz I often say, "No, he's not doing that, but he can do this." Like, isn't this good to? You would think I was more relaxed with the second one, but I just feel like I am being put on trial and have to prove myself in a very short amount of time. It's not like she sees us outside of the office....Ugh, I should just relax.

We did get some free formula though, so that was a huge blessing. That stuff is so expensive!

Baby Duck

Yesterday I had an appointment to check on our little baby Duck. Everything went well. We got there early and were called back right on time. We still did not get back into the car until nearly an hour after the appointment, but at least we were called back on time! I don't have too much to report. I am with a new doctor, again. This is my fourth OB/Gyn for 3 pregnancies and we've only moved once! I loved my OB for Boaz and am really sad to not be able to have her again this time, she moved to New Hampshire a week after Boaz was born. So, I am going with the next best doctor and I really like her. She is young and doesn't have any of her own children, but seems to be excited and knowledgeable about what she is doing. I asked if I could have another ultrasound to check my due date again and she complied without any hesitation. That's always a plus. She said I was 10 weeks and 5 days. So, I guess the date she found last time is right. Then she tried to listen to the heart beat, but between Boaz crying, Canon talking and the baby moving like crazy, for some reason she couldn't hear it. So, she did another ultra sound and discovered that the baby really was moving like crazy and was still not able to measure the beat, though she got a good enough glimpse to be happy. I have to admit that I am a little nervous. We were able get good ultrasound pics of both of the boys by now and a good heart beat measurement, but this baby is a little tricky. I just wonder what this will look like on the other side of the womb! So, everything is good for now and hopefully Albert will be able to go with us to the next circus appointment.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

A Short Trip


This is the only picture with all three faces!




(Yes, this Gorilla is going to the bathroom in the background!)

The boys and I have had a very special last couple of days. On Thursday, after dance class, we headed up to Wichita, KS. We went there to visit some friends Albert and I met in Enid, OK about 3 1/2 years ago. We lived near them for about a year, then we moved and still saw them a couple of times, then they moved out east, and now they are back in Central U.S. We are so thankful to have them near by again!

The drive took about 2 1/2 hours and they boys did wonderfully. I planned to leave right at nap time and I have to say that the trip was a dream! The boys fell asleep right away and woke up about 45 minutes from their house. I only had to stop one time and that was just a quick pull off of the interstate to give Bo his pacie. Once we got there, the big boys took to each other right away. Canon loved their swing set and sandbox! The next day we visited the local zoo and saw several very fun things. We were able to see penguins swimming and a variety of animals going to the bathroom. (This is always funny to me for some reason.) We even got to walk through a petting zoo. All of the kids did a great job and passed out in the car on the way home. That evening and this morning we just hung out and visited with them. The boys and Hannah enjoyed chasing each other around and I enjoyed visiting and having adult conversation with Kim. I am very thankful we were able to take this short trip and have such a special time.

The pics on here may look cute, and they are, but you would just have to see how many were actually taken to get this result!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Flies, Flies, go away!

Somewhere on-line it says that a flies life span is from April to August. Well, it is September and somehow over 15 flies crept into my house today! I thought we only had one or two yesterday. But today I decided to get the fly swatter out and they just kept coming back for more. One is taunting me as I type this, flying back and forth in front of the computer screen. Or, maybe there are two of them. I obviously was way off with the previous group. I feel like I am walking into each room with my "fly sensor" on. Listening for that annoying buzzing and searching for the dirty black spec. I am not a fan of flies and am ready for them to all freeze and go away for a while!

The Things Little Ones Say!

Canon is coming out with all kinds of phrases these days, but these little stories are not about him. I have just started teaching a little dance class for some friends of ours through church. It is awesome and I am very excited to be back in the dance mindset. Last week, one of the little girls said something that made me almost burst out laughing. She reminded me of another funny thing that happened in my class in Enid. I'll start with the Enid girl, then last weeks girl.

I think it was the beginning of class one day right after I found out I was pregnant with Canon. When we found out for him, we told everyone within about 48 hours. Even strangers knew! Well, on this Tuesday this little girl comes into class and holds out a dime. She said, "I want you to have this so you can buy stuff for your baby." I thought it was so sweet that I nearly laughed and cried. I told her mom and asked if she would mind if I kept the dime. It is one of the few items and stories that have made it's way into Canon's baby book.

Now, last weeks little girl was hilarious. Most of the kiddos in this class are very chatty. This week they did much better, but last week was crazy! In the middle of stretching she says, "Angels live in California, and Jesus lives in your heart." One little girl offered a correction saying that angels live with God in heaven. I told them both that it was not time to talk about angels and we needed to be quiet. I have gotten quite a few laughs out of this little conversation though. I probably should have addressed it a little more, but I was trying to stay on task.

Socks

One of our close friends posted about her daughter and socks and I couldn't help but laugh thinking of my boys! Bo is similar to our little friend. He does not like socks. We have only had to wear them a couple of times, but he was not happy about it. The other night I had socks on him and we were eating dinner. He normally slurps the food off the spoon, but that night he was tugging at his toes and would hardly eat. I helped him pull the socks off and he finished the rest of his dinner!

Canon is quite the opposite. I am trying to figure out where the baby's clothes will go and how the room will be set up to be the most functional. I know it is early, but I wanted to at least have the pj's drawer cleared out....I still have a lot of work to do! Anyway, I moved all of the boy's socks to a basket under the dresser. They are still very accessible, but not taking up drawer space. Well, obviously they are a little too accessible and Canon does not realize how big his feet are. All of our kid socks are in the basket, from newborn to 24 month. So, not all of them fit him that great. He pulls out several pairs, pulls them all apart, then asks me to put them on him. One night or morning, I can't remember, he ended up in his shorts pj's with navy blue socks on and his crocs. Yes, he is a little old man in the makings! He has slept several nights with socks on that are much to small. I am pretty strict about what he can wear in public as far as the socks go, but for around the house he is giving me a good laugh!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Special Visit

Two weekends ago my in-laws came for a visit. We love having them in our home and the boys especially love the extra attention when they're around. A couple of funny memories have come from their visit that I hope you'll enjoy.

Papaw is Mr. Fix-it. While he was here I had all kinds of things that needed repair. He started out with the most difficult, a breast-pump motor and a chainsaw (play) with a loose wire. Amazingly, he fixed both of them. So, I sent him down the list of other things that could use his attention. The last thing Papaw repaired was the rack that holds the toilet paper on the wall. It came off right after Albert left so I just kept telling Canon that Papaw would fix it when he came. Now, almost every time Canon goes to the bathroom in my bathroom he says, "Thank you Papaw" when he pulls the toilet paper off.

OK, here's the funny one! Also while Papaw and Granny were here, we went for a couple of walks. Now, we go for a walk almost every morning, so this was nothing new. But walks will never be the same after their visit! A little over half way around, Canon sounds the "potty" alarm. Of course there is not a bathroom in sight. So, I suggest a tree. Papaw rushes him over, strips down his lower half and tries to get him to lean over. Granny and I are trying to make a little wall and encourage him to go quickly. He was so busy looking around that nothing happened. So, Granny poured some cold water on his gentleman parts, we are dying laughing and of course this didn't work. So, she tried his foot. By this point he is just loving all of the attention and not interested in pottying. We continue home and the rest of the walk is uneventful. The next day we head out again and right at the same spot Canon sounds the alarm again. This time we left it all up to Papaw. We found a tree with a little more cover, Papaw held him in "the position" and we waited. Next thing you know, Granny asks "Was that poop?" Oh yes, my little guy was pooping in the wild.......though it was not so wild with a busy street right behind us. We died laughing again, cleaned him up and headed home. Now, every time we go for a walk and get near this tree, Canon says "Potty, Mama." I have told him that he has to hold it and we only potty under a tree when Papaw is around!