Saturday, January 29, 2011

Just Ramblin..

I just wanted to post a few pictures of the kids that I took the last week or so. We haven't done anything too terribly interesting lately. The kids go to school, Mercie, Silas and I hang out, I try to keep the house clean and dinner cooked and spend time with Mikaela and Eli when they get home from school. We stay busy but nothing notable to post about! :-) Silas can army crawl anywhere he wants to get. Mercie still gets in our bed every. single. night. Eli is doing well in school, and said he is the teacher's favorite. Ha! Mikaela is also doing well, and has made lots of new friends. My sister and her boys came over today and we got to play outside all day. The weather was nice, around 60 degrees or so. I can't wait for spring weather! Tomorrow is church. It will be weird with only 1 child!! The older ones are going to church with my mom and then we'll meet her and pick them up.

A few prayer requests:
*My PawPaw (my dad's dad) just  had a procedure done to remove what they thought was a gall stone, turned out to be cancer. He's had cancer before, and now he has another type. He's 82 years old, but doesn't seem that old! I'm really worried about him, he's in Houston right now with my dad undegoing some tests and stuff to see what they can do about it. Please pray for him.

*A young family in our town (22 and 23 years old) lost their 4 month old baby last week to meningitis. It is so horrible and so sad. They also have a 16 month old. Pray for strength and peace and comfort...I can't imagine...I don't want to think about it...

*My sister is pregnant! 10 weeks. Pray for her pregnancy to go well. And ENERGY for her.

And now...some pictures...

                                      Best buddies...this was so cute!
               Mik wearing her headband Nana brought her from Nicaragua.
                 Just playing....

                  What a face!
                "I can hold him Mommy! Really I can!"




                    "See? Told ya!" Then she pushes him out of her lap (didn't get a pic of THAT).

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Children's Museum

Saturday, we went to the Children's Museum in the big city (1 1/2 hours away). My mom, my sister and her two boys, and me and the kiddos went over there with my mom's church's children's group. We had a good time, and the kids loved it. It's more like a huge play place than a museum. They have a kid sized firehouse with a pole you can slide down (none of my kids would though); a kid sized restaurant where you can pretend to cook and serve people (which my kids loved); a huge mouth you can walk in and see the teeth; a real ambulance; a real cop car; sand and bubble play; a canoe you can get in and see yourself 'in the water' on a tv; and a few other things. I took some pictures, but Mikaela wouldn't let me take any of her harldy and Mercie didn't want to smile either, so they are mainly of Eli. Who was in a take my picture doing this kind of mood!
















Friday, January 21, 2011

Silas is 7 months today!

Today my baby is 7 months old! He is growing so fast! I am trying to slow down time, but am finding it an impossible feat.

He is still almost exclusively nursing.
He liked baby food for a few weeks, but hasn't been interested in it the last week or two.
He is sitting up so well!
He doesn't sit up so well in the buggy at Wal Mart.
He smiles and laughs at his brother and sisters.
He likes to play with toys, especially his sit to stand ABC train.
He loves his bath!
He is in size 3 huggies, but they are a little big.
He is in size 12 month clothes.
He doesn't sleep all night.
He hates anybody touching his face.
He loves mommy to hold him all. day. long.
He is a happy baby!
He pulled to a standing position Tuesday for the first time.
He moves his feet constantly when he's being held.
I am so in love with him!

And with that face, how could I not be?!

On another note, I am missing Mikaela and Eli more than ever since they've been going to school. It's a long time I don't see them every day, and I was used to seeing them all day long. Eli's still adjusting. He likes school, but misses Mommy. Mikaela likes school, but misses being home, too. I miss them both being at home with me. I am enjoying Mercie and all the time I can pour into her and Silas. She is enjoying having my almost undivided attention most of the morning. She usually naps after lunch, and then the big kids are home from school.

I guess I'll adjust!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Breastfeeding PART TWO

I have experienced first hand many, if not all, of the benefits of breastfeeding I read and learned about, plus more!

1.) Intimate bond with your baby. Yes, I bonded with all of my children, even the bottle fed ones. But there is a closeness, an intimacy you have with your baby when you breastfeed that cannot be described to anyone that hasn't breastfed.

2.) Sensitivity to your babies needs. In my experience, I am much more responsive and compassionate to Silas's cries and needs than I was with the others. Not that I love him more or anything like that! How could you love one child more than another? It's just an urgency I feel when he's crying; an importance of his needs, not an annoyance.

3.) Way easier! That's an understatement. In the middle of the night, you don't have to get up and fix a  bottle and hold a bottle and stay awake to feed baby. You can roll over, feed him, fall asleep, and repeat without ever leaving your bed (if you co sleep). If you don't co sleep you still just grab your baby and feed him. You don't have to wash bottles, pack bottles, pack formula, buy formula, mix formula, etc. Breastmilk is always available, always the right temperature, and always the right formulation for you baby.

4.) Immunity for you baby. Did you know that your breastmilk changes to meet the needs of your baby?Did you know that when your sick, your breastmilk produces antibodies against that particular illness for your baby? The longer you breastfeed, the longer your baby reaps immunity and benefits from mother's best.

These are just a few examples. I could go on and on! The benefits are almost endless.

Breastfeeding has been so wonderful for me. The thought of weaning is sad to me, so my plans as of now are to let Silas self-wean. We are going to breastfeed as long as he needs it, even if he just nurses for comfort at night, or even every few days. In our country, some people think that extended nursing is weird and makes people uncomfortable. But God designed women to bear children and breastfeed. Or, as my The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding book says on the cover,

Babies are born to breastfeed!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

My Journey to Breastfeeding PART ONE

My first 3 children were not breastfed. I bottle/formula fed them. I wish I would have breastfed them. I wasn't educated on breastfeeding. I didn't have any friends who breastfed their babies. I was young! (Well I still am young.) Breastfeeding wasn't even an option for my firstborn! It never occured to me. I thought about it with my second, but didn't. I wanted to with my third, but didn't. I started to feel like I was missing something! Before I even got pregnant with my fourth, I knew I was going to breastfeed.

I read everything I could about breastfeeding. The book "The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding" published by the La Lache League became my guide! I read it and reread it! I knew every possible problem I could have and the solutions. I knew all the 'positions'; I knew all the benefits. I knew I didn't want any bottles at home. I knew I didn't want to take any formula home from the hospital 'just in case'.  I checked out books from the library. I talked to my mom (who breastfed me and my sisters). I was excited! I knew there was no way I was going to fail! I knew what I wanted! I educated myself, and I am so glad I did.

When Silas was born, I knew to tell the nurses "No bottles or pacis". I knew to breastfeed him as soon as he was born. I knew how to latch him correctly (although it took a few clumsy tries...). I knew to let him nurse as long as he wanted, as opposed to a set time.

I remember the first time I put him to my breast, and the overwhelming feeling that washed over me. I remember thinking, "He's getting the best from me. I'm feeding him. I'm providing all the noursishment he needs. His survival depends on me!" It was an amazing feeling, and it still is. I remember just watching him eat, watching him nurse, being in awe of this totally amazing thing that God designed - BREASTFEEDING.

I remember the first day and a half, I experienced no pain. I remember thinking, "Wow, this is easier than I thought it would be!" I remember Silas would 'suck' for an hour each time he ate!

I remember when my milk came in. I remember wincing, gasping, even crying out in pain when he would latch on. I remember it only lasted a few seconds. I remember using lanolin each time I nursed! I remember using breastpads like they were going out of style. I remember using my Boppy those first few weeks. I remember feeding him all day long for a few weeks.

I remember the day I experienced no pain when he latched on. I remember the day I realized I wasn't feeding him every hour and a half. I remember crying tears of joy and amazement as I watched him eat. I remember the feeling of love I felt each time he ate. I remember the first time I felt my 'let down' and realized what it was. I remember the first time my milk sprayed out!

Breastfeeding has been a wonderful experience for me. I am thoroughly enjoying it, and not looking forward to the day he will wean. I can't imagine not breastfeeding him.

I am by no means an expert on breastfeeding, although sometimes I feel like I am! I have a desire to educate young mothers on breastfeeding, and maybe God will use me for that purpose one day. I do know that I have learned a few things from becoming a breastfeeding mom.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

How do you...

get a stubborn almost 3 year old to take medicine?! Mercie has an ear infection and the doc prescribed her some antibiotics - AMOXILLIN! The best tasting antibiotic ever created! And she refuses to take it. We have spanked...gotten angry...tried forcing her...the only way she got it was mixing it with her lemonaide...but does that cause it to lose potency?? I did get her to take it this afternoon only because her ear is killing her!! And I had to hold her mouth open and force the dropper to the back of her throat...man this is so hard. I have never seen a more persistent stubborn toddler!

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Where does time go?

I can't believe Silas is almost 7 months old. Time is flying by, and I'm trying to capture it in pictures. I'm not a good photographer, but I am trying to take as many as I can!








And my beautiful Mercie will be 3 next month!

Feeling Better!

Oh man am I feeling better! I am so thanful that I woke up today without a headache! A headache can really get you down...it's hard to move when your head is pounding! I have a cough and a sore throat, but other than that I'm much better! Thank You, Jesus!

Eli stayed home from school today because he was running fever this morning. He's napping right now, and seems to be feeling fine. He'll go to school tomorrow.

Mercie's better, too. She has been sleeping well without coughing. She is also napping right now.

Silas has a cough, but he has been much more agreeable today. He also slept much better last night. He is also napping right now.

So while all 3 littles are napping, what is Mommy doing?

Folded a load of clothes.
Made daddy a gallon of sweet tea. (a neccessity each day)
Swept the floor.
Picked up toys.
Started a load of clothes in washer, then transfered to dryer.
Went through a pile of mail.
Thought about scrubbing the pan from dinner last night.....but decided it needed to soak a little longer. :)

I am also thinking about this little face:
                                                                                                                                                        
I have been seeing alot of this face the past few days. But I'm so glad he's feeling better.
As I was rocking him to sleep earlier, I was staring at his adorable face. The way he sucks on his lips as he's falling asleep. (cute, I know) The way his eyes roll up in his head as he attempts to stay awake. The way his fist always finds his hair, pulling it, playing with it, rubbing it. The way he finally gives up staying awake, and gives in to sleep.

There is nothing in the world like rocking a baby to sleep.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

I'm so TIRED

My last post...where I was bragging on Silas sleeping ALL NIGHT for 2 nights in a row??...well that stopped that night. I don't know what's wrong with him, but he has not been sleeping much at all. He's so fussy...crying all day...crying all night...not happy with anything....I took him and Mercie to the doctor Monday. Mercie has an ear infection, but the doctor said nothing was wrong with Silas, except he could see some more teeth coming in. He wasn't this fussy with his other teeth, though. Hmmm...he is acting so different from his usual self. I am so stiff and sore from not sleeping well at night. My headache hasn't gone away since Friday afternoon. My house is in serious need of cleaning. I can't put Silas down all day long because he has been screaming when I do. He is actually on the floor playing right now (first time in days...) so maybe today will be better!!

Mikaela and Eli started riding the bus to and from school! It's so funny to me how much Eli loves school. I really didn't think he was going to like it at all. But he loves it! Mikaela is doing well, catching on very fast to some math concepts we hadn't learned yet. I'm so proud of both of them.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Ugh..I'm sick!!

I started getting sick on Friday...I had a terrible headache all day, and about 4pm it got a lot worse. By that night, my entire body was achy, I had fever, I felt terrible!! I couldn't sleep very well Friday night; partly because Mercie was coughing SO BAD ALL NIGHT LONG that she was vomitting, and partly because my body was hurting so bad I couldn't get comfortable. Saturday I still felt horrible. Mikaela had to entertain Silas most of the day because I couldn't get off the couch! Thank goodness she is such a good helper. She made lunch for the kids (corndogs) and kept me covered up and did a little laundry and most importantly, she watched Silas. I barely had the energy to nurse him! I felt a little better last night, still had a headace and a little achy, but I could at least get up and walk around a little bit. Rod cooked dinner and cleaned up a little bit, and Mercie was still coughing and vomitting. She didn't go to sleep until after 9pm because everytime she laid down she started coughing. I put some cough medicine in a her cup and that helped a little bit. She got in our bed, I piled her head on top of a bunch of pillows, and we got a little more sleep. Silas SLEPT ALL NIGHT AGAIN! The Lord had mercy on me because I needed to rest! I woke up feeling a little better today, still popping Tylenol every 4 hours for my headache and fever. However, Silas puked everywhere this morning! I had finished nursing him, and he just laid on me, which is unusual. He usually wants down, to play and roll around. Then he vomitted everything he just ate! He hasn't felt good today. He's very whiny and fussy, he hasn't thrown up anymore thank goodness, but he just looks like he is miserable. He just nursed himself to sleep and I laid him in his crib, so hopefully he'll sleep for a while. Mercie's cough is a little better. Rod has been cleaning ALL MORNING. He washed our bed sheets, loaded the dishwasher, cleaned the countertops, swept, cleaned up the bathroom, HE IS JUST WONDERFUL. He is gone right now to get some firewood. We are expecting some bad weather. It's been sleeting all morning, and supposed to accumulate several inches of ice! If that happens, we'll lose electricity...so he went to get some firewood so we'll stay warm if that happens! He is also going to cook lunch when he gets back. He is such a sweet heart. I hope and pray that we get well SOON and remember us in your prayers. It's so hard when kids are sick and double hard when mommy is sick, too!

Friday, January 7, 2011

Updates

Eli's upper GI went well yesterday. He drank the (disgusting) barium and the radiologist took xrays. Eli was really good about it, and he got that thick white barium all over his shirt, his mouth, it was so funny. The radiologist showed him an xray and pointed out his lungs, stomach, spine and ribs. Eli thought that really cool. OH YEAH and he has no heria and his reflux wasn't that bad! The prevacid is working (he's been on it nearly 3 weeks now)! He has only woken up 2 x's with reflux since the meds. I hate him having to take medicine, but he was miserable with the reflux.

We went to the mall and rode the carousal after that, and we ate a late breakfast at IHOP. I took my mom, sister, Mercie and Silas with us. Mikaela was at school.

After that, Eli and Silas had to get their vaccinations.  They both had to have 3 shots! Eli did not cry at all, I was so proud of him. Silas was mad, but he got over it pretty quick. He ran slight fever today, but other than that, no side effects! Thank you Jesus! Eli's arm was sore this morning where he got his tetnus shot, but other than that, no side effects for him either! God is so good to my family. We don't deserve it, but I am so thankful for it!

They are loving school. They are both doing so well!! They are both excited about going!! I am so proud of them. They are both smart, well adjusted youngin's...I guess I've been doing something right, even if sometimes I feel like I'm doing everything wrong!

Silas is sitting up now without falling over! He is trying so hard to crawl. He can get on his knees and rock, and then he lunges forward and falls. He just can't figure it out yet. He is still not sleeping all night, except last night he slept from before 7 pm to almost 7 am! I guess the shots tuckered him out! I woke up at 2 am totally freaked out when I realized he wasn't awake! I start him out in his crib, and usually he wakes up around 10 or 11 and gets in our bed for the night. It was different, sleeping without him! I missed him!

Mercie is enjoying having me to herself during the week, and I have to say, I'm enjoying her as well. She is so sweet!!

I love my family so much and so thankful for them.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

First Day of School

Yesterday was Mikaela and Eli's first day of public school.

And they had a blast!

I was worried about Eli, because he's never been to any formal school before and he's kind of a "mama's boy". He doesn't want to go anywhere without me lately. He was nervous before we went, but when we got to his class, he hung up his backpack and sat down where the teacher showed him, and waved bye-bye to me! I was just standing there, because I expected tears and protests, and he just waved at me! The teacher said, 'He's going to be okay, but is mommy going to be ok?' I was okay! I left and I was okay! I had to go back and bring him a few things he needed, and he just waved at me again. The teacher said, "You've done a good job with him! He knows it all!" That made mama proud!

Mikaela is being tested, but they're letting her go ahead and start 2nd grade because they're pretty confident she'll test at the right level. Which she will, because she's smart! She loved school, and I wasn't worried about her because she is confident in who she is, and she's outgoing, and she's a good kid!

They both talked my ear off about school, and Mikaela had homework. We have a little catching up to do in math, because they were ahead of where we were, but other than that, she's doing great!

Eli was up, dressed and had his backpack on before 7 this morning! Mikaela had the same enthusiasm! Thank you Jesus for wonderful children who are thriving!

I am going to enjoy my time with Mercie, I can already tell. She's a sweet baby and we had a blast yesterday. She was staring at me earlier this morning and I said "Do you need something?" And she said, "I just looking at you, Mama. I love you." And I almost starting crying! I grabbed her and hugged her so tight! It's these moments that make life worth all the trouble!

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Health

I am so thankful for the health of my children. I have been encountering blogs lately about sick children and children and babies who have died...it is heartbreaking. I will have tears streaming down my face as I read the mother's thought and feelings put into words, I can feel the hurt, some of it anyway. The loss of a child or watching a child suffer through a painful lengthy illness has got to be the worst pain.

Thursday, Eli is going for an upper GI series. He had GERD very severly as a baby and was on Prevacid and Reglan for about a year or so. We took him off as soon as I thought he didn't need the medicine. He has dealt with reflux his whole life, not every day, but quite a bit. Rolaids are in high demand! I took  him almost 2 weeks ago to the doctor and had him put back on Prevacid because his reflux was getting to be an everyday affair, waking at night crying, gagging, coughing, trouble breathing. The doctor decided he needed an upper GI to check for a hiatial hernia (I know I spelled that wrong!). I'm not worried...I'm sure he is fine...but if he has that, he will have to have corrective surgery, which is scary thought. Pray for him...for God to take away his reflux...to heal any problems.

Mercie actually had a barium esophagram done when she was just a few months old. She was having trouble eating, and would cough the entire time she ate. After several tests and blood work, the doctor (a different one) was sure she had a hole in her esophogus (again I know I spelled that wrong). We took her to church Wednesday night and the preacher laid hands on her and prayed for her. Rod was also fasting and praying for her. Thursday morning we took her to hospital (she couldn't eat anything after midnight), and they gave her a bottle of barium, which she sucked down, poor starving baby, and performed a video x ray (which was really cool). The radiologist said, "We are supposed to be looking for a hole, but there's none! There's nothing but minor reflux." AMEN. I know God healed her because she was one sick little girl.

As you can probably see, chronic reflux runs in my family. My dad has is SEVERE. I have it a little. Eli has it, Mercie had MINOR REFLUX but never had any problems with it after she was healed.

All in all, I am thankful for the health of my kiddos. It is not something I will ever take for granted.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

New Years Resolutions

I rarely make new year's resolutions just because I usually forget about them! But I have a few goals that I would like to meet this year.

1) Read through the entire Bible. I've done this once before, but I'd love to do it each year! I'm going to try to read it through in 90 days, but we'll see how this goes!

2) Spend more time with Mikaela and Eli before bed, especially since they'll be going to school. I'd like to have 10-15 minutes of conversation, prayer, tickling matches, or whatever with EACH of them ALONE.

3) Get Mercie's behavior under control. She is a sweet precious toddler, but she is the most stubborn, disobedient, rebellious, prideful two year old I've encountered. Hopefully with the kids in school, I can spend more one on one with her, correcting her and training her. Hopefully, it won't take all year! :)

4) Drink more water! I'm so hooked on diet cokes and diet A&W root beer, that I hardly ever drink water. And since I have around 10 pounds I'd like to lose, drinking water will help that. I've already started this morning! Usually it's a cup of diet coke first thing, but now I have water!!

5) Lose 10 pounds.

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!