"I went to the woods because I wanted to live deliberately. I wanted to live deep and suck out all the marrow of life;
to put to rout all that was not life and not when I had come to die, discover that I had not lived." ~Henry David Thoreau

Thursday, May 21, 2009

My Thoughts From Yesterday

I've had to pinch myself a couple of times today to make sure I'm not dreaming. At the moment, life feels good and somewhat tranquil. I've reflected a lot on what took place in our lives six short months ago. How things can change in a matter of months!

I've had a couple of dear friends lose pregnancies recently. I've watched how it has hurt them. It seems like only yesterday that I was in their shoes, but then again it seems like a lifetime ago. I remember those first several days after it happened and how all I wanted to do was curl up in a ball and cry. And I did. It was a terrible time and I hope to never experience it again. For several nights I had vivid dreams about a baby boy. I could see every outline of his body, every wrinkle, ever strand of hair. I could smell his newborn scent. And then I'd wake up and hurt all over again.

I cried at least once a day for a month. Then in February when I found out I was pregnant again, I did everything I could not to get attached. I had a lot of cramping and I was certain that I was miscarrying again. It took me several weeks to let myself feel anything for the baby. I think once you're hurt you somehow distance yourself. Even after having three ultrasounds that confirmed things were progressing well, I couldn't bring myself to get too excited.

Then yesterday as I was lying on the u/s bed and we first realized the baby was a boy, I could have split in two from the happiness I felt. I don't know if I breathed during the whole procedure. I was terrified of the sonographer finding a problem. But item by item, she went down the checklist and everything shouted of a perfect baby.

I think that the painful dreams I had for so many nights about that baby boy were in fact the spirit's way of comforting me. At the time it seemed cruel, but I now know that the veil was thin and someone was trying to tell me "It's okay, everything is going to be fine..." Yesterday I had a full realization of it.

I know that in our times of heart ache that the Lord is with us. He knows our sorrows and He does what he can to comfort us. He lets us feel His spirit. And if we're patient, we'll eventually see that all things will be made right. I've seen this numerous times in my life and I need to remember it. My heart is full. Last night as I prayed I thanked the Lord profusely for allowing our family such a wonderful day. A lot can change for the better in six months.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

The Verdict Is In

We have a perfectly formed little boy! We couldn't be happier. All day long I've needed someone to pinch me because it seems unreal that things could be so good. Life has been crazy and hectic lately and this seems to be great news to ease my stress. Like I said before, I'm a nervous wreck before any ultrasound. But the baby couldn't be healthier right now. And I don't have placenta accreta, which is a risk that increases with numerous c-sections. It's where the placenta adheres to the scar tissue and the chance of an emergency hysterectomy upon delivery is high.

We got a DVD with some really cute facial stuff. The little guy was SUPER active, I think due to a large caffeine jolt we both got right before the procedure. I never drink caffeine so I have no tolerance for it, and I'm sure the baby was thinking "What the heck?!" But even with the caffeine and sugar and being as wide awake as he was, his heart BPM peaked at 144. When he got tired again and became less active, it went down to 136. Ethan was exactly 144 at his u/s and both girls were 165. So maybe (with my kids anyway) there is some stock in the gender/heart rate theory. It's an interesting thought if nothing else. Judging by my measurements, they decided to keep my EDD at October 18. A few days give or take doesn't make a difference. What a great day!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

I Understand Completely

What a day. No, what a month for that matter. I understand how a person can beat their child, I really do. Not that it's okay, but I truly do get that anger driven impulse to snap a neck every now and then. I breathe, I chant to myself, I clench my fists, and I lock myself in another room. My children don't listen to me at all. They never ever do. Sometimes I think they hold secret meetings and plot ways to terrorize Mom. The way they are so in sync with each other; it's as if every naughty thing they do is pre-meditated. Their acts of terror are too well played to be coincidence.

I have been working in the yard a lot lately and this morning the kids were begging to play in the van. I HATE it when they play in the van. They flip lights on and the battery has been emptied many times as a result. not to mention the messes they make. So of course I told them NO!! I threatened them with everything I could think of that if they got in the car they would pay.

Several minutes go by and a couple of neighbors had stopped by to visit as I worked. The kids knew it was the perfect time to act. Suddenly I realized they were gone. I heard the van horn HONK!!! I saw Lauren's little head pop up from within the tinted windows. My blood began to boil. I went to rip open the sliding door, only to find that I couldn't open it. It wasn't locked, but rather the mechanism that controls the power on it was jammed. Money to fix that is going to be fun to come up with. So I went around to the other side and found that they had gotten into a box of unfrozen Otter Pops and were biting little holes in them with their teeth. Otter Pop juice now covered every surface of the car. Lauren was holding a DVD in her mouth. Why in the mouth?! After my rant I was surely expecting the cops to drive up because a neighbor would have called them. I was hysterical.

Fast forward to this afternoon. After picking Ethan up from school we headed to the Nursery where I've been dropping loads of money lately. I needed to get more compost and soil. The kids wandered through the place as I shopped, and for the most part they were good enough.

They love to touch everything, as all kids do. Every other word out of my mouth was "Put that down" or "Don't touch that". I got in a very long line and finally made it up to the front. The kids were standing about 50 feet away, touching and messing with everything. Very expensive lawn and garden decor was right at their eye level. I kept hollering at them to put things down! Of course, they looked at me and went right on disobeying. Ethan took several expensive pieces and was lining them up in the pavement.

After telling him several times to put them back (I didn't want to lose my place in line) I knew something was about to happen. Lauren looked at me, looked at the figurine, and then looked back at me. She deliberately knocked it over with a thrust of her hand. To make a long story short, I ended up paying almost $45 for this hideous thing that ended up in the garbage. I couldn't just sweep it away and pretend like my kids didn't break it. About 7 people saw it happen. So I kept my "cool" as much as I could, paid for it, loaded up my bags of dirt, and got in the car. Crazy mom emerged and I think the kids got scared into submission. It's only 5:00. There are still plenty of hours left for me to lose my mind with them before bedtime.

Getting Nervous

Tomorrow morning at 9:15 is my half-way ultrasound. I always get scared before these things. I start imagining all of the terrible things that they can find. But everything will be fine, right? No need to worry, I hope. We're taking all the kids with us. So far they have been to two of the three I've had with this baby and they've been memorized by the pictures of the baby on the screen. We're going to make it a family affair. Ethan is so excited he can hardly stand it. He keeps saying "Mom, how many more days til' I see my baby brother on the black computer?" He swears the baby is a boy. He doesn't understand that it could actually be another sister! I hope he and Dad aren't too upset if it doesn't have a twig and berries. All I care about seeing is a healthy baby. Wish us luck!

Monday, May 18, 2009

A Decade Draws To A Close

I turned 29 on Friday. And I didn't mind. Ask my parents and they'll tell you I've always been in a hurry to grow up and get to that next phase in life. This year proves to be no different and I don't mind that my twenties are almost over. I look forward to my thirties. Maybe because it sounds more grown up. Maybe because I'll take myself a little more seriously. Maybe because I'll feel like I'm no longer just trying on my mom's high heels that are ten sizes too big. Maybe I'll fit my own high heels. I have a great life and no real regrets to speak of. I've accomplished a ton during this decade and I have much to show for it. Maybe that's why getting a tad older doesn't bug me at all.

This birthday was nice and I was treated very well. I spoiled myself by staying in bed until 10:00. I had all the kids piled in bed with me while we watched cartoons, but none of us were in a hurry to start our day. Then it was the usual grind of housework, making meals, cleaning up meals that wouldn't get eaten, Primary business, and best of all tinkering some more with my camera. Wow, I've got a lot to learn. The manual is huge! It was a beautiful day and spent a lot of it outside in the sunshine. I love May!

Cody came home that night with a huge bouquet of roses, a Baskin Robbins ice cream cake, and best of all...5 Guys Burgers. Mmmmmm, I think they are the best burgers in the world. It was great spending a relaxing evening at home with a great husband and kids that I love more than life (even if they are so naughty).

But things didn't stop on Friday! On Saturday I went to lunch at Cafe Rio with my good friends Katie and Jules. Hailey tagged along for that outing and I think she loved the solo attention from mom. She was one of the big girls! I have some great friends and I adore them. To make things even better, Katie and her awesome hubby Jay came over to sit with the kids that night so Cody and I could have a REAL date. Our kids think the Szymanskis hung the moon so they had a blast together while Mom and Dad got out of the house.

We went to our "old" theatre out in our old stomping ground that we always went to while dating. I don't think we've been back to that theatre together since I was pregnant with Ethan. We saw "Wolverine" and I don't think I breathed during the whole thing. It was a GREAT movie!! It varied quite a bit from the comic book story line, but it was still awesome and very well done. What a terrific night! I don't think I could have asked for a better birthday weekend.

Friday, May 15, 2009

First Pictures

The camera was delivered yesterday. To say I'm excited about it is an understatement. And I'm a little overwhelmed. It's far more complex than the film SLRs that I'm used to. I had fun getting somewhat familiar with it yesterday. I have a LONG way to go, but it was interesting tinkering with it. Hailey was being my shadow and kept wanting her picture taken. I think I'll be doing a lot of this, Hailey. Don't you worry.

Is it so mean to think your children can be cute when they cry? She was mad because I wouldn't let her take a picture. Not with THIS camera!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Mothers Day

Happy Mothers Day, Mom!! I love you so much. Thanks for birthin' me and everything. I was actually due to be born on Mothers Day in 1980. My crazy mom still went to church that day and if I remember the story right, the only thing she could fit her fat feet into was a pair of house shoes. She was pretty miserable all during church. I didn't make my appearance until four days later on the 15th. I wanted to wait a few extra days to make sure my birthday would never fall on Mothers Day. It never will!

I had a really great day this year. Cody is learning and over time he becomes less and less of a guy...but in a good way. He seems to becoming more in tune with my feelings and needs a little more. He's getting wiser with age! My own dad needs to take a lesson or two from him. My dad is still the ultimate Neanderthal in some ways. Sorry, Mom.

I got to stay in bed until 9:15 Sunday morning. That's pretty late for me! When I finally got out of bed I had the most beautiful tulips waiting for me on the kitchen table. The kids gave me the sweetest cards (courtesy of Dad's help) and they picked out some very cute figurines. One day I'd love to have a curio cabinet of sorts to display stuff like that in. They also gave me chocolate dipped strawberries from Mrs. Cavanaugh's. The suckers were as big as my fist!

Cody gave me a card that was the most heart felt and sincere thing he'd ever given me. I just cried as I read it! Inside the card was a folded piece of paper. When I opened it up was very confused. It was the purchase order for a camera. Not just any camera, the new Nikon D5000. When I realized what it was I started shaking and bawling. I have been wanting a nice SLR for years and years. I've always been a huge photog nerd but a nice camera is a huge luxury and there are so many other things needing our financial attention. For weeks Cody has been picking my brain about cameras. But never in a million years did I think he had something like this planned. I was blown away because there's no chance we could afford this right now. But he assured me he'd been stashing money for a really long time, thinking really hard about it. This camera is one of the first SLRs to EVER take video also. It will be shipped and I'll have it in a couple of weeks hopefully. I still can't believe that my sweet husband had this planned for so long. He said he looks at as an an investment in our family and posterity. He is such a sweet heart.

Church was nice and the talks weren't over the top. Sometimes the talks make me feel very guilty as a mom. The Elders Quorum had arranged for all of the women in the ward to get to go to Relief Society so they ran Primary during the last hour. It's been so long since I went to Relief Society! Cody had a terrible cold all weekend and I felt bad that he was still up doing so much for me. We had steak and baked potatoes for dinner, along with salad, sauteed asparagus, and rolls. Then for dessert we had one of those giant chocolate cakes from Costco. I needed an insulin shot after eating a piece! Thank you Cody, for making Sunday wonderful for me. I don't need presents or anything fancy. Just having a day to make me feel special is plenty. Thanks for coming through for me!

I love you kids! Thank you for making me a mom, which is the best gift in the whole world.
I still can't believe this is my camera. I'm on cloud nine!!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009


Ever since we moved in almost four years ago I have wanted to put curbing around our trees and flower beds. I think it makes the yard look so finished and manicured. But it's never been on a practical to-do list and since I'm married to Mr. Practicality, I figured it would never happen.

Lately I've felt like I'm living in the twilight zone with Cody. He has randomly come up with ideas that I never would have dreamed him to have. He's actually developing an aesthetic eye! A few weeks ago he said he'd like to do curbing with a portion of our tax return. The guy who lives across the street from us does it for a living and he gave us a killer deal. Today he and his crew came and knocked it out in a few hours.

I love how it turned out! And I'm thrilled that CODY...yes CODY suggested putting in an island in the yard. I've always loved flower bed islands because the way I see it the more flower beds the better. I can't get over how much I love the finished product. Next comes our fence and then what...maybe a swing set and/or trampoline? Maybe we'll have a real yard before long. I decided with any birthday money I get I'm putting it toward our garden and flower beds. Shrubs, trees, flowers, etc. I'm so excited!! By the way, the curbing will be a little lighter when it dries. Also the stamping will be much more defined. These pictures were taken shortly after they finished the job.

18 Weeks? Really?

I have been very neglectful this pregnancy. I guess that's what happens the more kids you have! When I was pregnant with Ethan I always knew exactly how many weeks and days along I was. I was sure to drink three glasses of milk a day, even though I loathe milk. I got plenty of rest, exercise, and I ate the right amount of calories. Now by baby number four I'm lucky if I remember to take my prenatal vitamin. My health seems to get put on the back burner, but I have to remind myself that it's not just MY health that's at stake here.

My goal was to take a picture every four weeks. I haven't taken one since I was six weeks along. Oops! I haven't been to the doctor in over six weeks because life hasn't slowed down enough for me to make it there. But today I went and I'm measuring a little big. The midwife assures me that as of today I am 17 weeks and 6 days pregnant. I tried to argue with her and say that I'm only 16 weeks, but she said I was very wrong according to my LMP dates and my three ultrasounds. Oops again!

I've also gained twenty pounds already. I'm a freak who gains at least a pound a week steadily from day one. I'm right on track for that! I heard the baby today and it's always music to my ears. We have our big ultrasound scheduled for May 20. I could go in before then, but I doubt I'll have any time. We're all hoping for another boy, but when it comes down to it...it doesn't matter.

BTW, the heart BPM was 140. Any guesses as to the gender???