Thursday, July 30, 2009

and now I'm sentimental

Several posts ago, I said I was super glad this was my last pregnancy. I was and I am. I'm so sad this is my last baby and wish that for a little while I could stop time. Or at least slow it down a bit. Drew is over two weeks old now and I feel like time is flying by too quickly. We had his newborn photos taken this weekend and I was extremely nervous because the kid does not like to be naked. This girl does not like to be peed and pooped on and that always happens when a diaper is removed. (I am happy to report, I escaped but Jason did not :) Before the session Christy asked me what shots were most important to me because babies do get tired of having their pictures taken. I requested shots of all of the kids together. This is an impossible task for me to accomplish on my own. As soon as I pull out my camera they strike their usual "mom pose" chin back and the biggest cheese grin you can imagine. They cooperate for Christy and she always manages to get an image that captures all of them perfectly. Of course I also wanted Andrew by himself. I love the newborn stage. I feel like I blink and it's over and most of the time I am so exhausted there are parts of it I can't even remember. Right now Andrew is so peaceful and quiet and there is nothing I would rather do than snuggle with my sleeping baby. I wanted images that capture that peacefulness. A year from now when he is climbing all over everything and eating out of my trash can, I want to be able to look back and remember he really was this little once, he really was this calm.

Thank you Christy for always doing such an amazing job.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

wildlife excursion

We do not have a zoo and decided to take the kids to the next best thing..the outdoor animal park on Thursday. You drive through the reserve in your own vehicle and the animals walk directly up to your vehicle and in front of it. You can purchase feed at the beginning but we decided with 3 children in the vehicle we would skip that option this time around. I was a little afraid of Will rolling the windows down too far or one of the kids forgetting and sticking their hand out the window and getting bit by something. Most of the animals were pretty calm and just followed you around the entire time you were inside. The ostriches kept fighting in front of our car and I was a little leery of them by the end of the trip. The kids loved it and couldn't get enough of the animals.

the welcome committee

the crazy ostriches..I could not get a picture of them actually fighting.

the gate guards.

outside the reptile house

summer dance

Another summer session of dance is complete. Bella was in a creative movement class this summer and really enjoyed herself. I've said it before and I'll say it again..Bella loves to dance and would do it every single night if she could. This summer was no exception. She loved having the freedom to dance the way she wanted and learning new things. She told me she is ready to get back to tap and ballet soon though.
Bella does this move at home all the time, without the barre.

Amelia asked me all last year when she could take dance class. Before summer session started, I asked her again if she was sure she wanted to dance. I have no doubt she can dance but I wondered if she would be a fan once she realized "dance" required attending a class without her big sister and without her mom. The first two classes she cried and then she settled down. Every week I asked Miss Melissa if she was okay or cried the entire class, apparently once the doors closed, she loves dance and does all the activities. (I refuse to send a "crier" into class that disrupts and distracts the other dancers.) Of course during parent week all she did was tear up and wouldn't do anything unless Bella stood right by her. A huge thanks to Miss Melissa for having the patience to deal with my Cowardly Lion and for allowing Bella to dance with her.

hopefully she finds her courage soon.

with their teacher Miss Melissa. The girls adore her!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

swimming lessons

Isabella and Amelia have been taking swimming lessons all summer. Bella was a bit skeptical of the water last summer and couldn't stand to get her face wet. I was a little leery when classes started and hoped I wouldn't have to fight her to go each week. She is doing great, looks forward to class and now puts her entire head completely under water. For her this is huge and she is so proud of herself! She asks to go to the big pool every day and doesn't complain at all when people splash her (another big bonus).

Amelia is also doing fantastic. She usually demonstrates with the teacher in class and loves to practice kicking. Her teacher told Jason she is ready to move from the parent/child class to the preschool class. I have no doubt she has the skills to advance but I'm not sure if she would be a fan of swimming without Jason beside her. We have to keep reminding ourselves she is only 2.5 and not as old as she sometimes acts.

I am so proud of the girls for all they have accomplished in swimming lessons. I hope after the next session is complete I will have two little fish.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

one week old

Drew is now a week old. Our first week was pretty normal. Lots of eating, diaper changing and not sleeping. The week has flown by and I can hardly believe he has been with us for seven days already. All day I kept thinking...This time last week we were driving to the hospital. This time last week I was sitting in a hospital bed, feeling him kicking inside of me. I was counting the minutes, then seconds until he would make his grand entrance. This time last week I heard Andrew cry for the first time. This time last week I held him for the first time. And on and on it went. It amazes me that this little baby just entered the world a week ago and is such a huge part of my heart already. Time goes by so quickly and I am really trying to stop and enjoy every moment with him.


the professional Big Sister...she would hold him all day if she could.


Friday, July 17, 2009

we're home

Andrew and I arrived home yesterday. Our first night alone with him went smoothly and we had a pediatrician appointment this morning. He is gaining back some of the weight he lost and is eating much better than he was the first two days. He is the sweetest little baby and we continue to be amazed by him every single day. The girls absolutely love him and take turns sitting on the couch holding him. Drew has the softest cry and the girls become very concerned when he is upset. Thankfully this only happens when he is getting his diaper or clothing changed. He hates to be naked and I am getting a little nervous about our pictures next week. I love the naked newborn shots and wonder how it's going to work with a baby that only likes to be clothed and swaddled as tight as possible. Thanks to all of our family and friends for your love, support, well wishes and congratulations this past week. We can't wait for all of you to meet Drew.

checking out Andrew's "finger toes". All four of the kids have the exact same feet and toes!

our last new baby pic with Dr. Mino.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

he's finally here...

Andrew Thomas arrived Tuesday at 8:45AM. He weighs 6lbs 13oz and is 19 inches long. He is the sweetest little guy and is the perfect completion to our family. Poppy brought Bella to the hospital last night to visit. She held Drew almost the entire time and didn't want to leave him. We're so happy he's finally here and can't wait for everyone to meet him!

Saturday, July 11, 2009

my poor little man

We had our second bee sting of the summer yesterday. This time Will got stung by a wasp and had a pretty fast reaction to the sting. I was sitting on the patio and the kids were all playing on the swing set when Bella yelled that he had gotten stung. I started to walk down to them to see what was going on and at this point Will was still sitting on the picnic table and wasn't even crying. All of a sudden he started screaming and shaking his hand. I looked at it and saw a little blister and a small hole but no stinger. I brought him into the house to clean it off and make sure the stinger was actually out of his finger. By the time I got him in the house and sat him on the counter, his entire finger was swollen and getting bigger by the second. I gave him some Benadryl and started mixing up some baking soda to put on it while I called the pediatrician and Jason. By this time he couldn't even move his finger and the swelling had gone into his middle finger and thumb. He was screaming and would barely sit still for me to apply the baking soda and ice. Thankfully he was screaming so I knew his breathing was fine. The pediatrician's office called me back immediately and called again an hour later to check on him. The pediatrician recommended applying wet tobacco to the area so we will be buying some to keep in the house in case we ever need it. His hand was swollen most of yesterday but seems to have gone down almost completely this morning. It was pretty scary for me and I really hope this was a one time reaction.

Here is a picture I took about an hour after the sting. The swelling had started to go down by then.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

1st stuffed animal for the baby

Today the kids and I headed to Build a Bear to make a stuffed animal for the new baby. Jason and I made a bear for Bella before she was born and the siblings have made a new bear before each of their sister/brothers were born. The girls have especially enjoyed doing this and like that they actually made the bear themselves for their new brother. Today we couldn't find an actual bear that we liked and decided on a dog. We put him in the crib and he is now waiting for the baby to arrive with the rest of us.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

4th of July

The 4th of July was always one of my favorite holidays growing up. I loved spending time with family, watching the parades and staying up late to watch the fireworks. As part of a military family, the holiday now has special meaning to me. I am so proud of my husband...for his honor, his humility and the sacrifices he has made for his country. I am grateful for the men and women that served before him and those that serve beside him now. The 4th seems to be the one day Americans come together to remember and and honor this great country we live in. For one day we are not Republicans or Democrats, we are not worried about the latest health care policies or budget crisis. We are all Americans and we are thankful and proud to simply be that.

We were able to spend the weekend with our close friends the Baileys. They just arrived in town from three years in Hawaii. We were stationed together in Arkansas and actually neighbors for the last six months we were there. We have a lot of fun, special memories with them and are so happy to have them here with us for a few months. We went swimming, had an impromptu barbecue and headed out to watch the fireworks. We all took bets on which of the five children would cry first. My choice was Amelia and she started wailing as soon as the first fireworks were shot. She eventually quit screaming and clung to Jason for the rest of the show. Everyone else enjoyed the fireworks and Bella is already asking when we can see more.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Splash Blast

The girls have grown tired of the small swimming pool in our backyard. I think that going to the big pool every weekend has spoiled them and the little pool is boring now. I originally thought I would be able to take them to the pool by myself a few days a week like I did last year. After a few weekends I realized trying to keep track of three children constantly going in opposite directions is a next to impossible task. I usually run a pretty good zone defense on dry land but have yet to perfect it in the water. Will has no fear of the water and requires one person's undivided attention. I knew I would need something to keep them entertained at home, especially with the new baby coming, and have been on the lookout for some type of inflatable pool/slide. I finally found one that was small enough they could climb without assistance and didn't break the bank. They love it and had so much fun!