Saturday, March 28, 2009

A Few More Pictures...

Harper looks enough like Dane did as an infant that she will always have to something pink or a bow or something "girly", so that we will be able to distinguish them when they're older.

Here's proud big brother Dane and distracted big brother Aidan meeting their new baby sister Thursday night.

My friend Becky (who knows our family well) brought Harper her first Nun-Chucks.  She'll be defending herself against her brothers in style with these girly little Nun-Chucks.  So girly I just decided to rename them "Nun-Chicks". 
Family of five:

I should finally go home from the hospital tomorrow.  Then the real fun begins...

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Happy Birthday!

Happy Birthday to Mom,

Happy Birthday to Me, 

Happy Birthday,
Harper Sloan

Happy Birthday to you!!
Introducing Harper Sloan, born at 8:53 am, weighing in at 8 pounds, 4 ounces, and 21 3/4" long!  So far she looks more like Dane than like Aidan, with soft dark hair.  She is VERY vocal.  :)
Mom and baby are doing great, and Dad couldn't be happier (unless I had let him bring the Wii to the hospital.)  Dane and Aidan will meet their baby sister tonight.

Coolest birthday gift.  Ever

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Birthdays Past Part 2

I continue this week to remember the boys' birthdays as we patiently wait for Baby Girl to get here, which will hopefully be Thursday March 26th.  If things go according to my plan.  Which would be a first these last 6 months or so.

Aidan was, um, a bit of a surprise.  Dane was 11 months old when we got pregnant with Aidan, and I remember staring at that pregnancy test thinking "I can't be pregnant.  I already have a baby."

Note to all of you newlyweds:  You have to actually take those little pills for them to work.  And when you run out, you have to get them refilled and keep taking them for them to keep working.  Consider this my wedding gift to you.  This information will be much more useful to you than the cookie sheets I was going to give you.

So Aidan's due date was to be August 31, 2005, a mere 20 months after Dane was born.  Two babies.  

One of the memories I have of my pregnancy with Aidan (it's amazing how little you remember when you're chasing a one year old around.)  Our master bedroom is upstairs in our house, directly above the garage.  It is also about the same size as our two-car garage, with a single air conditioning vent, blowing cool air from our single overworked air conditioner.  That spring, with the knowledge that I would be extremely pregnant in the summer, I had an AC man from our church out to apprise our little AC situation.  I basically told him, "Do whatever you have to do to make our bedroom cold at night."  And a lot of money later, he did.  And our bedroom is now the coldest room in the house.  Worth every penny that summer, and still worth every penny.

Given my history of having a shallow pelvis and a very comfy uterus with a Cervix of Steel (sorry, fellas), my doctor scheduled me to have a c-section with Aidan on August 24, 2005.  I was pretty happy with that.  It was a week before my due date, and I was excited about having a plan.  About knowing exactly when he was going to be born and what to expect from the experience.  I was very excited about skipping the whole "Pitocin" thing.  About not having to interrupt all of Brandon's reading and leisure activities with a little thing like labor.

August 24 was a Monday that year, and my surgery was scheduled for 7am.  The night before, Brandon and I went to Chili's for dinner (not exactly sure where Dane was).  At Chili's, I thought I was feeling a few contractions.  I ignored them.  We went home, the contractions were definitely continuing and very gradually developing into a pattern, getting closer together.  I decided to continue ignoring them, with the knowledge that they were most likely not achieving their purpose.  After all, with Dane, 12 hours of Pitocin only dilated me to 1 centimeter.  I was not in danger of having this baby on my couch that evening.  Brandon took an Ambien that night (he had a long history of insomnia) and went to bed, while I tried to also sleep.  But I found that I could not sleep through the contractions I was having.

That should have been my first clue that perhaps these were the "real deal".  I could not sleep through them.  So I got out of bed, and laid on the couch watching Tivo'd episodes of the Gilmore Girls all night, knowing that Brandon had taken an Ambien and would not be functional until early morning hours.  

At about 4 am after (11 hours after Chili's), my contractions were coming every 3 minutes, and I decided it was time to wake up Brandon and get to the hospital, even though I wasn't supposed to be there for the c-section until about 6 am.  Brandon managed to drive me to the hospital in his drug-induced state, and once there I was promptly hooked up to the monitors so the nurse could admire all of my contractions.  

A quick check revealed that my Cervix of Steel was holding:  I was not dilated even a single centimeter.  Nothing.  Nada.  Contractions for 11 hours, 3 minutes apart, and nothing to show for it.

But I got my epidural.  Because after all, I was going to have a c-section anyway.

7 am came, and I was wheeled in for my c-section.  I knew what weird sensations to expect, which managed to calm the nerves a bit.  The nerves came back quickly when I realized how quiet the room was as I was being filleted with an 8 inch incision in my abdomen.

Quick note:  Did you know that people who have had a previous c-section are not supposed to have contractions for 11 hours at home while watching Gilmore Girls on their couch?  I didn't either.  Apparently, a previous c-section puts you at risk for uterine rupture during a subsequent "trial of labor".  Would have been helpful information to learn on Sunday August 23, not Monday August 24.

Back to my quiet c-section:  after an eternity of minutes in my mind, Aidan Cooper was born, red and screaming, at 8 pounds 9 ounces.  As my doctor was closing, the doctor who was assisting him was leaving the OR.  She stopped to pat me on the shoulder and congratulate me.  She also said to me, "It's a good thing you had a c-section.  If you had VBAC'd, your uterus would have ruptured."  (Google VBAC, fellas, I'm not going into it here.)  My uterus was so thin at the site of my previous c-section scar, that they could see the baby through it.  And apparently, it's not good for a uterus in that condition to contract a whole lot.  Again, information that would have been helpful YESTERDAY, DOC.

Guys, I'm sorry for saying "uterus" so much in this post.  That's as graphic as I'll get, promise.

I don't remember much of the next 12 hours.  I had not slept a wink the night before Aidan was born, and My Favorite Nurse In The World (I have no idea who she was), put a nice little button in my hand.  Every time I pushed the magic button, morphine was pumped into my body, easing the pain of the 8 inch gash in my belly and facilitating sweet sleep. 

When I finally came out of it, I vaguely remember our bachelor-at-the-time friend Jeremi coming to visit.  Jeremi is one of our dear friends, and he and Brandon work together, go to the gym together, and are good buddies.  Knowing how restless Brandon would be in the hospital room with me for a couple of days, Jeremi thought it would be a good idea to bring his XBox to the hospital to loan to Brandon while he was there.  He could just hook it up to the TV that was right there in the hospital room!

Now isn't that sweet of Jeremi.

Mere seconds after Jeremi left, Brandon left to go to Blockbuster and rent a video game that he had just been dying to play.  Just dying to play!  (Our house had been video game-free for a couple of years at this point, so Brandon was going through what can only be described as withdrawl).  Another memory I have of the hospital stay after Aidan was born is trying to go to sleep in my bed, at about 11pm (because this is, after all, the last sleep I am getting for the next few months), and Brandon keeping me awake playing stinkin' video games at all hours.  On the TV IN MY HOSPITAL ROOM.  
Brandon just informed me that "That was awesome, and I beat that game in, like, 2 days."

(By the way, if anyone has any idea of a suitable way to repay sweet Jeremi for his generosity in sharing his XBox that would not adversely affect his new wife, please let me know in the comments.  I have been trying to figure out what would be a suitable, um, thank you gesture, for the last 3 and a half years.)

One of the highlights of that time was Dane meeting his baby brother.  He was so excited and so sweet, and he's still pretty fond of his little brother.  Hard to believe that this little baby is going to be a big brother himself in just a few short days.

Look!  Brandon took a break from his video game to hold his new baby!  (Love you, honey.)
Here's Aidan and I the day we brought him home from the hospital.  He was very blonde, and jaundiced to boot as you can tell from this picture.  This blanket wrapped around him became known as his "alligator blankie".  It had a green leather alligator sewn into one corner, and Aidan slept with that blanket and hauled it around everywhere we would let him until the alligator disintegrated sometime last summer.  He has had no interest in the blanket since then.
We can't wait (but we WILL wait--till Thursday, that is) to meet this new baby.  Can't wait for her brothers to meet her, and to see what she looks like and if she'll be happy and laid back like Dane, or fiery and headstrong like Aidan.  I can't wait to swaddle her and have a sleeping baby (did you hear that Baby Girl, I said SLEEPING BABY) in the pack-n-play in our room.

See you Thursday, Baby Girl.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Birthdays Past Part 1

With Baby Girl's birthday fast approaching, I have been reminiscing about the boys' birthdays.  We're still on track to have her c-section on Thursday, and I thought I would take a few moments to remember the day that my Dane was born and I became a mother.  And to answer the "Why am I scheduling a c-section" question.  So I apologize in advance to both of my male readers.  This will be (non-graphic) chic reading.

In December of 2003, Dane's due date on December 15 was fast approaching.  I was very pregnant and very miserable.  I remember the comments that every pregnant woman hears in the last month of her pregnancy:  the endless questions about how I was feeling, how much longer did I have, and of course, all of the tips on "how to go into labor".  I tried all (okay most) of them.  I ate Mexican food.  I ate Dominos pizza.  I walked miles.  I even went to Brandon's gym and hopped on the treadmill.  Picture a 9 months pregnant woman wearing scrubs (it was all that fit) on a treadmill in a very "muscle" gym.  This was not the YMCA.  I was the only woman there, and I was the only one not sweating it out on the free weights.  The men all stared at me as if the baby would actually fall out onto the treadmill.  Very nervous weightlifters.

My doctor was not the least bit encouraging.  Appointment after appointment revealed that Dane was no closer to swimming toward the light than he had been the week before.  I was gi-normous, so an ultrasound was scheduled at my 39-week appointment to see just how big this baby was.

I was pretty excited.  I had convinced myself that if the baby was big enough, surely my doctor would take pity on me and send me to the hospital to be induced.  I packed my bag before my ultrasound, and I said to myself "If they tell me this baby is 8 pounds, I am not going home."

That day, at 39 weeks, Dane's weight was estimated at not 8, but 9 pounds, and my doctor refused to induce me before my due date one week later.  I did not go to the hospital that day, but Brandon took his crazed and tearful wife to the Cheesecake Factory instead.  (I don't know how I gained 40 pounds with that pregnancy).

One week later, on my due date on December 15, 2003, I went in for my induction.  Still no indications that this baby was actually planning on making his appearance any time soon. 

Because I have blocked most of that day from my memory, here is the short version of the 12 hours between 7am and 7pm:  Pitocin was started, non-stop contractions in sued, and after 12 hours of these contractions, I was a whopping 1 centimeter dilated.  Um, has anyone seen the size of my childrens' heads?  1 centimeter was just not going to cut it.  And they wouldn't give me an epidural because I was not "progressing".  

This was not my plan at all.  My birth plan included getting the epidural at some point 2 weeks before my due date and not feeling a thing.  At all.  Instead, I felt everything.  I would squeeze Brandon's hand through some of the earlier contractions, not realizing that, silly me, he was trying to read his book.  After the first hour, he turns to me, as I am experiencing NONSTOP contractions and says, "Um, I don't think I can do this all day."

I'm sorry, honey.  Is all my labor BOTHERING YOU??

12 hours after the induction started, it was clear that Dane had absolutely no intention of being born that day.  Still not swimming towards the light.  A c-section was mentioned, and I may have said something along the lines of "I don't care if you have to pull him out of my nostrils at this point, JUST GET HIM OUT."

Earth Mama I am not.

As I'm lying there in the operating room for the c-section, experiencing the weirdest feelings on my abdomen I have ever felt, I finally hear the crying of my precious baby.  He was born a pink and screaming 8 pounds 7 ounces (not the 9 pounder the doctor expected), with the giant head he still sports today.  

Then I hear the most surprising comment from my doctor as he is closing up shop:  "You have a very shallow pelvis.  This baby never would have delivered."  Apparently, Dane's head never even "dropped", because his huge melon would not fit in my "shallow pelvis".

For those of you that know me, you understand why this comment is surprising.  When I look in the mirror, I do not see a woman with a "shallow pelvis".  I have always been a girl built for famine, not speed.  I will never wither away from starvation.  However, I will never go on a safari with my sister, because if push comes to shove, I know who the hungry lion is coming after.  And it ain't Lindy.

But apparently, the hips I see in the mirror are not birthing hips, they are cheeseburger hips.  The doctor told me at a later appointment, that "unless I start having 5 pound babies, I will always have to have a c-section."  So that settles that.  Brandon and I are not destined to have 5 pound babies.

Dane proved himself to be a very sweet, easy going baby.  He went "by the book", and was very happy and a great eater and sleeper.

He was very alert and interactive as an infant, and we enjoyed him so much.  Here is a picture of Dane, very confused by his father's "Mud Gumbys" t-shirt, when he was about a week old:

We were all a little confused about that shirt, Dane.

And a few months later, Dane proved himself to be built for famine, also.
He has a mouth in there somewhere (as evidenced by the obvious signs of nutrition exhibited in the arm rolls.)  It's just buried somewhere between the super-chubby cheeks.

Now this little baby is about to be a Big Brother, second time around.  

He's a good one.  I think we'll keep him.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Before and After aka "I've Reached New Levels of Boring"

Before I bore you with baby pictures next week (next week!!), I thought I would do a few "before and after" pictures of our house since Hurricane Ike and the Giant Tree smashed into it 6 months ago.

Here is our master bathroom September 14, 2008:

Here is our master bathroom now:
The cabinets, countertops, carpet, and of course, shower have been replaced. Hot Brandon finished the shower last night, and it is awesome. It's 9 feet long, and 4 feet wide with an open walk-in doorway to the left of the above picture. (And that towel hanging there is more of a mossy green, not the weird lime color it appears here.) We're going to put some hooks in that back wall to hang towels on.

Here is the inside of the shower, taken from the back corner near the doorway. The floor is the small-tile slate. I'm so proud of my handy hubby and how hard he worked to finish this giant project. It took a lot more time than I think either of us anticipated. He has been working on it every spare minute for the last 3 weeks.

By the way, I feel like the lamest person on the planet for posting random pictures of the interior of our house. So boring. But it's so nice to be back in our house. And some of these pictures are weird angles so that I wouldn't have to clean too much before I took the pictures. :)

In addition to a major bathroom remodel, our kitchen also got a pretty good facelift. New cabinets, countertops, sink, and table. This is a random shot of our kitchen countertops after the storm. You can kind of see the cabinets there in the corner:

Here's our new cabinets (LOVE them) and countertops now. The wall color is the same as it was before, as is most of the paint color in our house. I didn't want to have to make a lot of paint decisions, and I was pretty happy with a lot of the colors that were on the wall before.

No "before" pictures exist of the nasty living room carpet we used to have. Let me paint you a mental image: Picture a tire-and-lube garage. Now, imagine that they had white carpet inside of the work area that had been there for several years, and several hundred cars had their oil changed over this carpet. Then someone decided to rip this carpet out of the garage and put it in someone's house. This is what was in our living room and downstairs office area.

Now, we have this pretty fake-wood floor, and I absolutely love it. The boys have learned not to run in their socks, and have bitten the dust more than a few times. Again, sorry about the weird angle of this picture. Please note Aidan's new toothbrush there on the red rug.
I don't have a "before" picture of the baby's room, either. Picture walls that were supposed to be tan, but were in reality more of an olive-green color (I should never be allowed to select paint color). Picture a college intern living in the room for the summer, and lots of computer equipment, music stuff, and a guitar.

I don't have a picture of the entire room, I've still got some organizing to do. My mother-in-law made the crib bedding (bumper coming soon), and I absolutely love it. The walls are post-it yellow, and there's a lot of green accents in the room, like this super-fuzzy rug on the floor by the crib. The crib sheet is brown with tiny little polka-dots, and the curtain is the same as the dust ruffle.
Here's the diaper hanger, which shows the prints a bit better:

Most of our other rooms that were repaired look pretty much the same as before. And some other things have not changed in our house at all.

Like this:

Quite possibly my favorite picture of my house.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

I'm Still Here...

I'm still here, and still pregnant.  I'm working on a "before and after" post with a few pictures of our Post-Ike house that I will try to finish for tomorrow.  I have some time for little projects like that since my last day of work was last Friday.  I also have several dates with a few Redbox movies lined up for today and tomorrow.  Because heaven forbid I work on other projects that actually need to be done over the next week or so, like packing and organizing the garage.

I'm still expecting to have my c-section Thursday of next week.  As in T minus 9 days.  My doctor yesterday actually offered to move the c-section up to this week, and I declined.  I think I'm her only "full term" patient who does NOT want to deliver yet.  I am spending a lot of time doing very little, and "trying not to go into labor".  I am a girl who likes a good plan, and despite the laziness and "nesting deficiency" I seem to be experiencing, I don't want to have this baby until a few more little things are done.  Baby's room still isn't done, but I plan to have a few pictures of the cuteness tomorrow.  And the giant shower project should be completed tonight :)  And I still haven't packed my or the baby's hospital bag, and I haven't packed for the several day stay at Cousin Camp and then Camp Pappy that the boys will be going on after the baby's born.  And I haven't hidden the video games to insure that Brandon doesn't bring them to the hospital to play all night while I'm trying to sleep.  (Another story for another time.)

Dane and Aidan went to the dentist this morning for a cleaning.  (No cavities!  It's kind of a miracle, actually.)  They love the dentist.  They watched a movie there, and left with goodie bags complete with a new toothbrush, toothpaste, floss, and a sticky rat.  Yes, a sticky rat.  One of those things that when you throw it onto the refrigerator, it sticks there.  I'm not sure how that ties into "dentist visit", but the boys are nonetheless thrilled with the sticky rat.  Dane has flossed his teeth no fewer than 4 times since we've been home (confession:  we're not flossers), and Aidan has not put his new toothbrush down.  Even to eat strawberries and go to the bathroom.  The new toothbrush has not left his hand.

We had our first church services in our new building this past Sunday, and it really could not have gone much more smoothly than it did.  We had a great crowd, and have already filled up our parking lot and some of the children's areas.  We are so fortunate to be a part of a growing, thriving church family.  A few kinks to work out, as expected with a first Sunday in a new facility, but overall it went very very well.  I'm very excited to see how God is going to work through us at this new place.  And if you live in my neck of the woods, come visit our church.  I'll be hard to miss:  I'll be the one who is 8000 months pregnant wearing teal green hospital scrubs because they're the only thing in my closet that fits.  Fortunately, we're not much of a "wear fancy clothes to church" kind of church.  Unless you just want to be fancy.

Hope you're having a great week!  And unless my nesting instinct kicks in tomorrow and I spend the day putting clean laundry away or organizing the garage or something, I should be posting "Before and After" Ike pictures of our house.  And you know it's going to be impressive, since repairs took an entire 5 months to complete.  

Not that I'm bitter about that.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

8 Pounds

I wasn't sure if we would be able to go this year, but the boys and I made it out to King's Orchard this morning to pick some strawberries.  This is one of our favorite things to do in the spring, and given my extremely pregnant stage, and instructions from my doctor to "try not to go into labor", I wasn't sure if I would be up to all the strawberry picking.  (There's a lot of walking, wagon pulling, child wrangling, and, of course, strawberry picking involved.)  But I threw caution to the wind, and we ventured out and enjoyed a great morning outside.  A morning made even better by no one's water breaking in the middle of the strawberry patch situated an hour away from home.

But we made it an early morning today, and were in and out of King's Orchard with a mere 8 pounds of strawberries in less than an hour.  

The boys had a great time, as usual, and we managed to beat the Spring Break crowds that will surely follow us out there over the next week or so.  And as usual, we were not successful in keeping Aidan completely out of the strawberries until they were purchased and washed.
I am very well aware of the fact that it is March, and these are perhaps the first pictures I have taken of my children in 2009.  They do still exist, and here is photographic evidence.
On an unrelated note, my ultrasound went well yesterday, and we are still on track to have my scheduled c-section on March 26th!  (And the giant shower project is on track to be completed by then, also:)

Monday, March 9, 2009

Things I Don't Want to Forget

With a new baby's arrival very near on the horizon, I wanted to document a couple of things about Dane and Aidan that I didn't want to forget about them right now:

Aidan is very passionate about accessories right now.  He loves wearing hats, regardless of how weather-inappropriate they might be.  A couple of weeks ago, we had a cold front and he was getting himself dressed to go play outside.  At one point he had on a knit hat, sweatshirt, pajama shorts, and black sandals.  The outfit gradually transformed as he would go outside and declare certain parts of his body too cold, until he had something reasonable on.  Except for the sandals and hat.  Those both stayed.  Yesterday at church he had on the red hawaiian print shirt I had picked out for him, but then he had paired it with green camo shorts, red knee high soccer socks, and black "skateboarder" shoes.  Running late, into the van he went.  Some fights just aren't worth it, especially with my strong willed child on Sunday mornings.  And most people at our church didn't even bat an eye.  They're used to Aidan.

Dane is very close to reading right now, and can read some things.  He is good at recognizing words he has seen often, as well as most of the typical "sight words" he is supposed to recognize.  Yesterday he was looking through his little Bible story book, and could decipher "Five Thousand People" on his own.  But he still has trouble with the letter "y".

The boys love the baby already.  I don't think they have much concept that she's going to be here very soon (still hoping to make it till March 26th), but they love to come and hug my belly.  Dane does realize that "It's March right now and the baby is coming in March", but I don't know if he understands how soon that is.  Dane also likes to talk to the baby, and if I've recently eaten something, (okay, Thin Mints), he'll put his ear to my belly and say "I can hear the baby sister playing with the cookies in your tummy."

Aidan talks almost nonstop these days, but he is having issues with what I will call "beginning sounds".  I don't know if this is the technical term for it, but he says lots of words without the first sound on them.  For example, Christmas becomes "Witmat" and drink is "wink".  I have noticed that he mostly drops sounds that are consonant-consonant sounds (such as Chr and dr, br, etc), and doesn't have any problems saying the D in Daddy, P in potty, and M in mommy.  So I'm hoping he'll grow out of this.  But it makes understanding him a challenge at times.  Fortunately Dane is around to help translate.

Dane is wearing a shirt today with various Disney characters on the front.  I overheard him telling Aidan who everyone was on his shirt:  
D:  Here's Hercules, and this one is Tarzan, this is Peter Pan, and this guy is Adam.
Me:  Adam?  (turning to see who he is pointing to on his shirt)
D:  Yeah, Adam, like Adam and Eve.
Me:  That's not Adam, that's Alladin.  He has a sword and everything.
D:  Oh. 
I know this should bother me, but I'm not exactly sure why this should bother me.  Because Dane thinks Adam is a Disney character?  Because he thinks Adam had a sword?  Or because he thinks Disney characters were real like Adam was?

I have an ultrasound this afternoon to take a look at the baby sister and see how big she is getting.  Brandon and the boys are both coming, which should be fun.  

Happy Monday, everyone!

Thursday, March 5, 2009

How To Talk To Pregnant Strangers

Dear Random Guy at WalMart Today:

Let me start by saying that generally speaking, I love a friendly person.  Cranky people in public crowded places really add nothing to their environment. 

So I'm sorry, WalMart, I added nothing to your aisles today.

And hello, there, Random Guy.  Do I know you?  I have to stop and think for a moment, because that is the only good reason I can think of that you would be yelling "Well hello there, how are you doing today?"  From one end of the frozen aisle to the other, where I was standing.  As you approach, I can see that I do not, in fact, know you.  Unfortunately, that does not discourage you from asking me how I am feeling.  

Do you really want to know, Random Guy?  Because since you asked, my lower back is killing me, my pelvis feels like an arthritic 80 year old man every time I move or walk, a small person is using my bladder as a punching bag, and every time the baby moves, it makes me want to vomit.  And I'm so tired I actually contemplated skipping frozen foods and just going home for a nap.

But I'm guessing you don't actually want to know how I'm feeling.  So I reply, "Great!"  and attempt to keep walking.

But you, Random Guy, will not be deterred.  Because you have not invaded my privacy enough for one day.  You chase me down to the Stouffer's section (don't judge me for eating unhealthy frozen meals) and proceed to PUT YOUR HAND ON MY BELLY AND ASK ME IF I AM HAVING TWINS.

Let me offer a quick tutorial for those of you who have no idea how to speak to extremely pregnant women that you have never met before, yet feel compelled to converse with in public anyway.  First, never touch her belly.  You are a stranger, and if you are close enough to touch my pregnant belly, you are DEFINITELY in my personal space and need to scooch back just a tad.  Second, never ask if she is having twins.  This will never be well received by the pregnant woman, unless she is actually having quadruplets.  In that case, rest assured, she will not be wandering the aisles of WalMart late in her pregnancy.  Finally, never offer suggestions to the extremely pregnant woman regarding "how to go into labor".  Especially if aforementioned suggestions involve, um, intimacy and related positions.  

That one's for you, Random Lady at Target Five Years Ago.

For the record, if I have never met you, you will not hurt my feelings by not inquiring about my due date/current children in my family/size/what I'm having/if I'm having twins/if I'm done at three children/you must be so thrilled it's a girl.

What to do if you do see an extremely pregnant woman at the WalMart that you don't know?  How about helping her lift that dadgum case of water bottles she's trying to wrestle off the bottom shelf into her cart instead of standing there waiting for her to get out of the way, oh able-bodied male?

Oh what a joy and miracle pregnancy is, and yes, I am taking the time to enjoy every second of my last one.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Another Eventful Month

March is going to be a very busy month for our little family.  We have successfully moved back into our house a couple of weeks ago, and save for just a couple more boxes (and the garage, but let's not talk about the garage), we are unpacked and settled in!  The baby's room is painted (thanks to my mom, who took pity on me last week and flew down to help me out for a couple of days), and the last few things have been borrowed or purchased in preparation for her arrival later this month.

Brandon spent the better part of this last weekend working on the Giant Shower Project.  When we unexpectedly remodeled our bathroom, we had a shower put in that is requiring approximately one billion square feet of tile.  So in addition to being ridiculously busy at work this month, he is also trying to complete the GSP.

Why is he ridiculously busy at work this month?  Well, I'm glad you asked.  Here is the short version:  About 3 years ago, our church outgrew the church building and property we had.  Which is a great problem to have!  We moved into a local intermediate school on Sunday mornings and have been meeting there ever since.  We had purchased a big piece of property to build on, and as of March 15th, we will be moving to the new building!  Yay!  For the last 3 years, teams of people at church have been meeting at 7 am to set up "church" at the school, and staying until about 1:30 in the afternoon to tear down.  It will be so nice to finally get into the new building (note:  the "new building" is actually Phase 1 of a 4 phase project, and will eventually be the Youth Building, which helps explain it's very untraditional appearance and layout).  Check out our church website here for pictures of the building and property.  As David (our senior pastor) is fond of saying, "This ain't your grandma's church in east Texas."

So the next several weeks for Brandon at work will be filled with meetings, moving, and last minute tune-ups related to moving 900 people and church offices into a new facility.  In addition to the work he does every week.  And I can't tell you how excited we are to finally be getting into our own building.  It has been a challenging several of years as a homeless church.  Logistical issues such as "where do we have youth program" will not be an issue anymore.  We spent some time yesterday in the new building, and it is so cool.  We are very much anticipating this move, and the boys and I are preparing for several weeks of very long hours for Hot Brandon.

And did I mention I am having a baby this month?  I may need a ride home from the hospital.
Yesterday morning before church, Brandon lost his keys.  He was planning to leave the house at about 6 am because he had a few things to do at the office before church, and then we had a lunch meeting at the new property afterwards.  So he kind of needed all of his keys.  We searched the house for about 45 minutes at a VERY EARLY HOUR looking for the keys.  We looked everywhere--outside, inside, we dug through trash bags, moved furniture, you name it.  It was looking bleak.  I was starting to think that they had been tossed by the landscapers who FINALLY CAME on Saturday to re-sod our front yard.  Off Brandon went to church with my spare key for his car.

Sunday afternoon, we check in with Aidan before his nap:  
"Aidan, did you hide Daddy's keys somewhere?  Where are Daddy's keys hiding?"
"I hid Daddy's keys in the bookshelf behind Daddy's books."

So the little key snatcher runs to our bedroom to one of the two full bookshelves, pulls out two random books, and reveals the missing keys behind them.  He had grabbed them off the adjacent dresser Saturday while "helping" Brandon tile the shower and hid them behind a couple of hardbacks.  We NEVER would have found them.
Conversation at the dinner table last night:

Mom:  Aidan, what did you learn in church this morning?
Aidan:  We learned about Jesus, and he put the mud in his eyes and he could see.  And he spit in the dirt and went in the pool.
Dane:  Aidan, Jesus didn't put the mud in his eyes, he put the mud in the blind man's eyes, then the blind man could see!  But if you're not Jesus, it doesn't really work.

I for one, am very grateful that the Sunday school teacher emphasized that "If you're not Jesus, it doesn't really work", because I could totally see Aidan trying this with the first blind person he meets. 

And in the minds of my boys, a story about spitting in the dirt and putting mud on other people and then swimming, is second only to David and Goliath in terms of coolness.  Because to Dane and Aidan, nothing beats a story about getting to throw rocks at other people.