Thursday, May 26, 2011

Sentimental old me

As I was going through my old posts and deleting some I never finished,I realized that I had not shared this one,so here goes...
As I cry over every Mother's Day post I have read, I am once again struck by how quickly my own babies are growing up. I keep thinking the upcoming arrival of the newest will be easier because they are big kids now. John will be starting kindergarten (sniff, sniff), Sam will be in the 3rd grade (sniff, sniff) and Jack will attend preschool for a couple of days a week. I have never been in a hurry to push them out of the nest and on to the next milestone because it just seems like I am never ready. I don't want them to grow up and leave me, ever. If I could freeze time I would. I also have to remind myself that I am not raising children, I am raising men. I have borrowed them from God for a short while and I know that he is already using them in so many ways. While I have been thinking of a name for our baby, I have been reminded of verses that I feel like apply to each of them.

In first Samuel, I read how Hannah prayed for Samuel and I think back to how I yearned to be a Mother and Andy was not quite ready. God took that decision out of our hands because our little Sammy was our first surprise.

I prayed for this child and the Lord granted me what I asked of him. So now I give him to the Lord. 1 Samuel 1: 27,28.

In remembering those very early days of motherhood, I am again awed by the unbelievable love and devotion that I immediately felt for that baby boy. I read and re-read every book I could get my hands on about childrearing. I was so afraid of not doing it right. I timed how long he nursed and wrote it down in a little notebook, I counted all the wet diapers and tried to keep track of all the poopy ones. After a couple of months I guess I felt comfortable in the fact that he was getting enough to eat. It became like second nature to him and for two years it was his favorite thing to do. I cried and cried when he weaned and so did he. After that I knew they'd have to wean on their own. It just broke my heart to tell him no. I can still hear him wailing, "but I need it", when I told him the milk was gone.

We had another surprise when Sam was only six months old. I was pregnant again. Unfortunately, this pregnancy ended in miscarriage after ten weeks. I felt so guilty , thinking it was somehow my fault because I wasn't ready to be pregnant again. It took us a year of trying to finally get pregnant with Johnny. We prayed and prayed. I hoped that God had planned for us a big family. He answered our prayers with a big healthy boy. We really had to rely on God during my pregnancy with John(as we should always). My doctor discovered I had an antibody called anti-Kidd. it's pretty uncommon and he was uncomfortable with just he treating me, so over to Mobile I went to the high risk pregnancy clinic. The anitbody is measured in titres and if I remember correctly it first registered at 1:1. We went to the clinic in Mobile every two weeks after 26 weeks. They tested my blood and at 30 weeks started detailed ultrasounds to make sure he was thriving. They called it a biophysical profile and they had to make sure that he had sufficent blood flow to his heart and brain. It was very scary. Just about every time I went for a visit they also asked if I had been tested for gestational diabetes because the baby appeared to be so large. They also requested that I not carry him past 38 weeks. So on August 2, 2004 , I was induced. I was fearful of this process after hearing rumors of how hard pitocin contractions could be. Sam was born very quickly without the aid of an epidural. I couldn't imagine contractions being harder and I had plenty of time to think about it this time. I had a nice easy delivery with him and unlike the high risk clinic's predictions he did not weigh 10 pounds, just 8lbs and 13 oz. He did look huge even at birth. Truly, he looked about three months old in the hospital. He was a dream nurser and immediately latched on like a vaccuum cleaner. He had such an easy going temperament, we called him low maintenance. He weaned without any heartbreak for his Mother when he was 20 months old, due to the upcoming arrival of his baby brother Jack.

We were doing a bible study on John during my pregnancy with him and I feel like this verse applies to him...

John 1:6 There came a man who was sent from God: his name was John. He came as a witness to testify concerning that light, so that through him all men might believe. He himself was not the light:he came only as a witness to the light

Jack was and is the total opposite baby of low maintenance, John. He was born at 37 weeks after a grueling labor for his Momma. He was born sunny side up and either his lungs weren't quite ready or he inhaled some fluids coming through thebirth canal . Either case, he had a scary start. He had to be in an oxygen tent for a couple of days. After we left the hospital, my emotions were very raw for months it seemed. He was very sleepy and I think I tried to feed him way too much. At 7lbs and 3 ounces, he looked tiny compared to robust Johnny. He cried so much in the beginning, I felt so helpless and very stressed. Johnny would escape to go outside all the time and Jack could not be put down. and Sam was in pre-K half a day. Those days were very hard for me and I don't think I appreciated them as much as I should have. My nerves were always on the edge. Jack eventually stopped crying so much. He was such a beautiful little thing though.

Ok, that's where I ended...
At the time I was stumped to finish. Since I seem to be over my blogging block, Drew and I will finish it.
Jack's verse
But you, LORD, do not be far from me. You are my strength; come quickly to help me.
Psalm 22:18
As I recant those struggles, I think of how much I needed God's help. I am not nearly as overwhelmed now but I will always need God, regardless of the circumstances.
Baby Drew is so very sweet and is extremely easy going. He gets dragged around quite a bit, as I pick up children from here or there. He takes it all in stride. He smiles alot and cries a little. I praise God for his precious, gentle nature.
Drew's verse
Rather, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight.
1 Peter 3:3-5

I am so thankful for these little boys and fearful at the same time.
1 John 4:18 (New International Version)
18 There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.
I can't control their futures only pray for them.

baby shower for Ann

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A couple of weeks ago, I hosted a baby shower for my cousin. She is having a baby girl in August! I do not like to wait until it is impossible for the honoree to bend over to have these things(parties that is). Yes, I use these tired old paper lanterns every time I have a shindig, I did buy and borrow a few pink ones. I like paper products almost as much as fabric. I thought I took pictures of the food table as well, evidently not. This obviously shows my lack of interest in this area of entertaining.
This shower has started full party mode at my house, we will have two baseball parties this Saturday for Sam's and John's teams. Afterwards, begins the summer birthdays, Jack in July, then John and Drew in August. Drew really isn't asking for much, except for Mamamamama and Dadadada. It should be a no-brainer!
I can spend embarassing amounts of time checking out party blogs. They are all soooo cute. The common element in most of these adorable parties is co-ordinating printables and lots of candy. Of course, the decorations are to die for too. These folks have more money than sense
But if you are looking for some cute birthday ideas go to Hostess with the Mostess or the Party Dress.
Both have killer ideas and lists of the blogs they like too, so you can spend all day looking at cute stuff.
When I grow up, after I become an interior decorator, I am going to be a party planner. My S-I-L is going to be my partner in crime, she can cook, praise the Lord.
The last group of photos is of the African special snack (party to me) for John's class. I love the bright colors with the animal prints. I tried to talk one of them into a birthday party with this theme. I could not really get too much into it just for a snack. It was really adorable though, since it was just supposed to be a snack I HAD to make food. I made lion cookies and zebra cakes. Both were just jazzed up pre-made stuff. They ate them up though!






Sunday, May 1, 2011

Deadbeat blogger



The title refers to me... in my last post the photos did not show up and I have had no interest since in the blog world. Well, blogging myself actually, I still look at others. I have been busy... I bought Photohop Elements and figured out quickly that it doesn't do what I want it to. It is the beginner of the Photoshop products and of course, the cheapest. Anyway, I probably don't how to use it correctly, but I did manage to load some actions into it from the Pioneer Woman. They were free! So I feel better about having purchased the software now. I have been using Picasa and was pretty happy with it. I have to rein myself in with this photography stuff or I will be just as obsessed as I am with sewing. I may have to switch back hobbies.
I actually thought I would be a photographer one day. I took classes in college prior to digital. Worked as one for about a year, maybe six months after college. My first "real" job was for this dude in Birmingham. It was brutal. If you have ever had any studio photos done, then you know photographers can have a few props and backgrounds. Well, roll the studio up and throw it into a Dodge Colt hatchback! My territory was Mobile and Baldwin, so I traveled around to daycares in both counties taking photos.
I had just moved to the area and was a bit unfamiliar with street names in Mobile, but alot of my clients were in Pritchard. Did I mention it was commission only? That kind of killed my dream...
Anyway, now I have all of these beautiful subjects(my kids)and decent props and I don't have to leave the house. You get immediate gratification with photography AND you can delete what is awful. Win/Win. My assistant Sam took the ones of me and Pooey, the others I have been working on with different action in PS. I still have to use Picasa to upload them to Blogger. I am probably eating up my hard drive. If anyone has any suggestions or tips on PSE, I am all ears.

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