Saturday, January 31, 2009

Ouch!

I am really looking forward to going to the Doc on Monday. It may be nothing but I'm contracting...a lot.

I spent 5 hours in bed on Thursday trying to keep them at bay and several hours off and on yesterday. Today I thought they had subsided but here this afternoon and evening they're back full swing.

I started timing them and they're coming every 20 minutes. I'm sure they're Braxton Hicks because they follow the definition. They aren't getting any closer together and the intensity is about the same. I am concerned however that they come whether I'm sitting/standing/sleeping etc.

From everything I've read they come sooner and harder with each pregnancy so I should expect them to hurt and to have them more often. I've called the Doc and they told me to rest the weekend and we'll check things out on Monday unless they are closer together. Basically the time to start worrying is 5 or more an hour. We're currently at 3-4 at the most and it hasn't really changed in 3 days.

In previous pregnancies these "practice" contractions got things moving for me and I've started each "real" labor at 3cm dilated or more and completely effaced. In fact I was 7cm before I had hard labor with Graham. I think that's why he came so quickly. Since we're planning another all natural labor (we're self pay & epidurals are pricey!!) I'm thankful for any help I can get :)

CountDown!

7

7 Weeks Left!!!

48 Days to Go!!!

232 Days so far!!!

Friday, January 30, 2009

Yay February!

Saturday is the last day of January. Can you believe it? We've been in 2009 for a whole month already!

I really like the idea of telling people we're due "next month." That makes it seem so close!

Feb 1st is the Super Bowl party at the church (starts at 5). Everyone is invited to hang out watch the game on the 52" screen or play games in the neighboring rooms all while eating yummy snacks. If you come please bring board games, snacks, and a 2 liter of pop. I'm actually excited! Not so much for the football but more for the fellowship.

Feb 8th is Anneliese's baby shower. EEEEKKKK!!! I am so incredibly excited for that! It starts at 3 and is at the church. Come one come all!! As soon as Jared and I decided to have another baby our friend Alisa said, "If it's a girl we're having a shower." Then when we found out she is a girl she said, "Okay, when do you want your shower?" I am so thankful for her friendship and hard work. I've refused to purchase much but the necessities (crib,swing,and bedding) in wait for the shower. My nesting is in overdrive and I can't wait to organize and prepare all her little things.

Feb 14th is not only Valentine's Day but it's also my friend Misty's wedding. She was my maid of honor and I am absolutely thrilled for her and can't wait to see her married and for her to begin her "happily ever after."

Feb 28th marks a full 37 weeks so any time Anneliese wants appear after that is fine with us!

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Progress

Something's changing. I won't go into all the gory details for both our sakes but our little girl is preparing for her arrival.

Yesterday morning I woke up achy and struggling with walking. As the day progressed it got worse. This morning I'm slightly more mobile but still achy.

I put in a quick call to the doc this morning just for peace of mind and he said to take it easy until Monday morning and we'll see where we're at.

I start week 34 tomorrow and Graham arrived at the end of week 34. We are hoping she'll hold out until at least 36 weeks so her little lungs will be ready.

Monday's appointment is a normal appointment as well as a sono to measure her size. I'm going to guess 6lbs. You're welcome to throw a guess out there as well :) I'm going off of Graham's birth weight of 6lbs 12oz at 34 weeks. I assume she'll be a little smaller since the sonogram will be sooner than a full 34 weeks.

Regardless we're definitely on the down hill slope. She'll be here before we know it.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Let There Be HD

I really like the new cable guy. He gave us this:

YAY! I can use my new TV now and it's beautiful! I am so thankful to have it done and hooked up. After letting the mud on the carpet dry I ran my sweeper over it and it's not even so bad. So it was a win win!

Yipee! NO more Sponge Bob or football for me!

Naptime?

-The new washer and dryer were installed this morning right around 8 am. Talk about prompt service. They have a larger wash/dry basin than the previous set but the machine as a whole is much smaller. These are compact and make the laundry room look larger. That's a plus. Apparently the leveling legs are stuck in place so they're sending out a "specialty team" to get the washer perfectly leveled and at the same height as the dryer. They'll be here tomorrow but regardless they work great and I'm super pleased.

-About 15 minutes after they left Nadia came over. I totally forgot I had her today. I have her every Wednesday it's just yesterday was a blur and today is starting out the same.

-Around 11 the DirecTv guy came to finally install the new box, satellite, and receivers. He's still working hard and is a breath of fresh air compared to the whiny cable dude. Let's deem this one the "Young, Hot, Hard working Cable guy with the Iphone." Jared is quite pleased with the upgraded work ethic and they are about done.

-To add to my "To Do" list Jared and the Y.H.H.W.C.G. w/ the Iphone decided to check out our bedroom for the best place to bring in the new cable. They wandered all over the room with their boots on full of mud. I walked in and apparently didn't hide my frustration very well because later the Y.H.H.W.C.G. w/ the Iphone enlisted Jared to come back into the bedroom to finish pulling the cable through. He mentioned he didn't want to get yelled at (with a smirk). So shampooing my bedroom carpet and the hallway rugs is now going to be part of my day. It's worth it though to be able to use our new T.V.

-Due to the fact I worked all afternoon Monday and we did the washer search all over KC yesterday the boys are behind on school. They've been working hard for a while now and still have a bit to go. They're doing a really good job of staying focused in the midst of the total chaos our morning has been.

-Nadia heads home at 3 and I'll lay Graham down here in a hour. I'm eager for things to settle down a bit. I may even shower! Now there's an idea.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

So, What'd You Do Today?

For the last week my "new" washer has been leaking small amounts of water during the final spin cycle. I was in denial for a few days until I started doing research and found out that my washer was recalled for such a leak and could catch fire at any given moment if the leak dripped onto the electric panel. Unfortunately for me the recall just gives me a free attachment to my plug in that stops electric from flowing to the washer if a leak is detected. It in no way repairs or replaces my leaking washer.

After tons of research online I decided to brave the intimidating contraption to find the source of the leak. Let me show you what I found:

That would be an inside view of my washer. Apparently it had been leaking for quite some time and completely rusted out the interior of the washer. I couldn't even completely remove the front even though it should easily lift up and out because the rust had welded it into place. While digging around in there I found 2 obvious leaks and figured out my water pump was bad. I looked up the parts and was looking at close to $300 before shipping and I'm pretty sure I wouldn't have been able to do the work myself.

UGH! I've had these maybe 4 months. The really depressing thing is that I LOVED this set. I really enjoy using them and they clean our clothes better than anything I've ever experienced. I cried...a lot. Crying is kinda what I do now apparently.

I called Jared and told him that we were going to have to replace it. He knows I would fix it if I could. I just think this one is outside of my capabilities and it seemed foolish to invest in a washer that's insides look like it's been left out in a monsoon.

At 1 pm I loaded up the boys and headed out with our savings in hand. Jared and I have been putting cash away for quite some time hoping to buy the family a new Mac computer. Apparently God knew this was in our future and the Mac we desperately want has yet to be released even though it was due out the first of January. Thankfully we actually had the cash we needed to replace our beloved washer.

I spent 4 hours visiting Nebraska Furniture Mart, Lowe's, and Home Depot trying to find the best deal for our family. Our boys did not appreciate being drug all over KC but handled it better than I could have hoped for.

With my mom by my side and my mother in law on the phone we found a really good deal on a highly rated set. We have a 5 year warranty with a lemon clause (if it breaks more than twice they replace it). With a family of 7 (eek! I can't wait!) we'll need a good set that will last and that's exactly what God provided.

Needless to say I'm worn slick and a little sad our dreams of a new computer for our home school family will have to wait. BUT I am thankful and full of praise that our God cares about the little things and provided yet again. Thank you Lord.

Bit Pitchy Dawg...

Sunday night around 30 people came over to play with us :)

Jared and I both started out the evening pretty drained but were so thankful for all of those who chose to come and fill our house with laughter and joy (oh and food!). It was a lot of fun.

Matt and Natasha D. came over bringing cheese dip, chips, and wii games. Tash handed me American Idol Wii. Oh my goodness we had the best time. It comes with a mic and it's basically karaoke with the A.I. judges. Several of us picked out songs and sang but you couldn't actually hear the individual competing because there was a loud chorus throughout the house of everyone joining in!

My favorite was when Dustin was singing My Heart Will Go On by Celine Dion (I'm not kidding) and Jess R. decided to sing along in harmony. That was stinking hilarious. I was surprised how comfortable everyone felt. There didn't seem to be any inhibitions and we laughed and sang and laughed some more.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Need A Giggle?

Whoah

Sorry I've not written much in the last couple days. To say we've been swamped would be an understatement. As I type this I really should be finishing up house work for our Sunday night company.

Today was a very emotional day. We are in our 9th month and today we celebrated Sanctity of Life week. To talk about precious babies and all those that have been lost to abortion brings up more emotion than I know what to do with.

On top of that we had to say good bye to our good friends and partners in ministry today. Our associate Pastor and his family are moving in the morning. We've worked together for close to 7 years. We've been through a lot good and bad and survived it all. It will be difficult moving forward but necessary for the sake of all those we love and cherish at Wyandotte.

Jared and I invited all our card buddies and plan to have an evening of good friends and good food.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Moving On Up

I spent most of the day yesterday organizing and decorating Anneliese's room. Graham was super curious why it was I took down his bed and kept saying, "this is Gammy's woom."

The older boys helped me by taking the old crib in pieces out to the garage and brought in the new one. The other day while at the Goodwill I found a changing table dresser that matched her crib perfectly. They took $50 off the price (Thanks Mom!) and I bought it immediately. I couldn't wait to see it all together.

It's amazing how real that pink nursery makes everything. I've been dreaming the last week or so about her delivery. Each time I ask,"Is it still a girl?!"

I was concerned about Graham's first night in with the big boys. I didn't nap him so that he'd be really tired. He did fantastic. He slept 12 hours and we didn't hear a peep out of him. The older boys went to bed about 40 minutes after Graham and they did great being quiet and they didn't disturb him at all. I was super impressed.

Here's her room so far. The new dresser is missing a knob but I ordered a set of knobs that match her cribbing. They'll be here by Monday! :

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Memories

I feel huge. Ginormous to be exact and I decided to look back at my previous pregnancies to see if I do indeed get bigger. Apparently the answer is YES so I thought I'd share. It's kinda funny (by funny I mean I can laugh at it now that it's in the past).

9 mos and at my heaviest ever with Brennan Conner. Sept 00'


The day I delivered Tanner at 37 weeks and my second heaviest ever. Dec 01' Sorry for the poor picture but it's the only one I have that shows the ridiculousness of my middle. Tanner was our largest thus far at 9lbs 30z and 24 inches long.


This is Easter at Grandma Anita's just days before I delivered Elijah also at 37 weeks. April 04' Again this is the only pic I have right before delivery. Elijah was my first post Weight Watcher's baby. I weighed less at 9mos than I did at my first OB appointment with Brennan by 6lbs.


At the hospital at 34 weeks with Graham. He was born the next day and was our smallest baby weighing in at only 6lbs 13oz. March 06' I actually weighed the same to the pound as I did the day I delivered Elijah.


We are a full 32 weeks with Anneliese so we are definitely nearing delivery. I'm hoping she'll follow suit with her brothers and come at 37 weeks which puts her at Feb 28th. IF that's the case she'll be here in just 5 short weeks. But even if she's stubborn (like I've heard girls are) we'll still be holding our little girl in a little over 7 weeks. I'll be sure to add another belly pic as we get closer.

As far as the hugeness I feel and the weight issue...While going through these pictures I found several postpartum pics with Mommy and Elijah and Mommy and Graham. It was encouraging to see that I will regain my not so round figure. I was back to normal with Eli in just 4 short months and with Graham in 6 (that was without dieting since my Dad had just passed I really didn't care much about my weight).

Regardless even if I stayed just as round I'd do it again. She's worth every ounce!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

*Yawn*

I am wearing down fast. It seems like each night I start looking at the clock earlier and earlier to see if it's time for bed.

Today was my all time worst at 6:15. Dinner was done, cleaned up and I thought, "Yep, I'm done." Unfortunately Jared has a camp meeting tonight and won't be home until 10 or 11. Convincing the kids going to bed at 6:30 is fun didn't fly.

I'm going through a new cycle in my pregnancy. I'm not so much "give me the baby" as much as I am "give me rest." I will be 32 in March. I'm not that much older than when I had Graham but I sure feel older. Walking has become scary. My hips are getting ready for delivery and each time I stand up I feel like Bambi fresh out of the womb. I'm not sure if I'm going to walk, fall, or do the splits. It's never dull!

Monday, January 19, 2009

Home Schooling Is Going To The Dogs

I had a doctor's appointment this morning and I worked all afternoon. On days like today Jared steps in and helps me to make sure we don't get behind on the kids' schooling.

Tanner usually needs quite a bit of help and requires a lot of instruction (although he's really turned a corner and is doing exceptional on his own). Brennan on the other hand takes his work, goes into the kitchen and then in a hour or two comes back to the office with his work completed without error. He rarely needs help and hasn't gotten more than one or two things wrong so far this year.

As I was getting ready for work I overheard Jared firmly asking Brennan, "What's 12 minus 8?" When Brennan hesitated Jared stepped in with, "Come on you know this. What's your mother teaching you anyway." Nice...

As a first born Brennan does not like to be wrong and will deliberate for a while before answering in order to ensure he's correct. He also really likes being on his own and working at his own pace. So Daddy's hovering and drilling for answers was intimidating and he just froze, oh and in true Brennan fashion...cried.

Brennan can't seem to remember how many feet are in a yard and stumbles on it each time. Unfortunately for Brennan that pesky question came up while Dad was looking on. I started with my normal prompts and Jared stepped in with a story:

"There's a one legged dog hopping around the yard. He was looking for his feet? How many feet are in a yard."

Brennan looks panicked and says with great concern, "I don't know. What's wrong with the dog? What happened to it?"

Jared continues his story altering it slightly hoping Brennan will make the connection. Brennan is pretty black and white and still doesn't understand what a dog has to do with anything and can't figure out why Dad is getting irritated.

Finally after several prompts from Dad and his mommy having mercy and holding up the number 3 he got it right and with a sigh of relief moved onto the next question. I don't think he'll ever forget how many feet are in a yard again but I feel he'll always wonder how the dog hopped around the yard with just one foot.

What's Up Doc?

I had my 32 week appointment today. I didn't gain over the last 3 weeks! Whoo HOo. That's a blessing.

I talked to the Doctor about all my irrational (and some rational) fears as we near delivery. I delivered Graham 2 weeks from now. I'm concerned about a rapid delivery that will end at home or in the car. I'm concerned about a huge baby that I won't be able to deliver and will end up with a c-section. I'm worried she'll come too early and I'll have another NICU baby. It's endless and the closer we get the more consuming it is.

Dr. Sheridan was very comforting. He said she's around 4lbs now and he'd guess she be in the 8-81/2lb range at term. That seems do-able. He promised to keep a close on us both over the coming weeks. He put me on limited activity. I'm supposed to rest as much as possible. I'm okay with that! I have another appt with a sonogram in 2 weeks and then it's every week until she's born.

As I headed to the van to go home I saw we have a flat tire on the van. Not just low, pancake flat. Matt and Natasha D came to my rescue. The office staff just looked at me and said, "Do you have AAA? Oh, well hmmmm. I hope it all works out." I'm not sure what I thought they would do but I was a little more than perplexed at what a 8 month pregnant chick is supposed to do all by herself. The worst part is I had the van so Jared was unable to help. He couldn't load the kids up in his car and come help. Thankfully the Dilley's were home and came quickly.

I'm assuming walking 20 miles home wouldn't be following the "limited activity" rules.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

1 Peter 1:6

I spent some time on the phone with my sweet friend Michelle this evening. During our conversation she shared this with me. A friend of hers wrote it and it is extremely poignant at this time in her life. I wanted to share it with all of you.

Perspective...

"Now when the milk spills, I just smile and say, "If it's OK with You, it's OK with me." When I get a flat tire, when I stub my toe, when my heart gets broken, when the light turns red, when the grocery check out line is ten people long, when the stock market crashes, when the lights go out, when my husband is rude, when I am misunderstood, when the cancer comes, when the loved one dies ... ! Whatever my gracious Lord brings to my life is OK with me. My heart rest in the truth of 1Peter 1:6 ... that we are distressed by various trials because it is necessary to strengthen our faith."


In my prayers for her healing I still praise the Lord. We both agreed that even though trials hurt we love the closeness and dependency we feel on Christ. As hard as it is to come through tribulation we are so blessed by the closeness with our Creator and Comforter.

If it's okay with You it's okay with me. Take me, make me, break me, whatever YOUR will Lord.

Let There Be Light

I finally got Anneliese's chandelier up and working this afternoon. Jared walked in the room and when he realized it hit him at about the forehead he wasn't impressed. I can walk underneath it without it actually touching me.

Our house is considered a story and a half so the ceilings aren't as high as the 9ft ceilings of the main floor. Hopefully Jared will have some grace. When she's older and has a twin sized bed it won't be an issue because the bed will be directly below the light. For now he'll just have to avoid the center of the room :)

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Family Happenings...

-While finishing up at Wal-Mart I was desperately trying to get Elijah's attention. I fumbled through all the boys' names before I finally landed on Eli. Out of frustration I said, "Why can't I get your names right?!!" To which Brennan replied, "Maybe because there's too many of us." I laughed SO hard and conceded he was probably right.

-Daddy is at a meeting this evening and I bought the boys a Supreme pizza. They were all very skeptical but amazingly they LOVED it. Tanner ate 3 pieces. Elijah kept saying, "Mom I love rainbow pizza." We always buy peperoni or sausage for Jared but since it was just us I decided to try something new. They are my kids :)

-Tomorrow Anneliese's petite chandelier is going up. I was putting it together the other day and realized there is an instrumental piece missing. Our sweet electrician friend is coming over tomorrow to put the beautiful fixture up. I'll be sure to post a pic.

-After watching our sweet little neighbor girl our house has been seriously disinfected. Nadia has been ill with a respiratory virus and even though it's been close to a week since she came down with it I didn't want to take any chances. Nadia and the boys have been lathered in Germ-X. As a little girl she thought it was lotion and was more than happy to go along with my OCD. She's the cutest and every time she would show me her hands and say, "did I wub (rub) it in anuf?"

-We have soft water!! The part came yesterday and I installed it rather easily. We started noticing a difference today. I am SO thankful to have it fixed and ready for the boys and our little girl. The glasses came out of the dishwasher today and you could actually still see through them. YAY!

-While checking out at Wal-Mart the cashier was scanning all the hangers and then asked for me to hold up a tub so she could zap it real quick. She eyed the boys and said, "So, is this one a girl?" I had to laugh.

-The boys amaze me more and more each day. All the concerns I had for Tanner and this school year have washed away as he has surpassed my expectations. He is incredibly smart and takes great pride in completing every task. I love that about our boys. They are committed and can't leave anything undone. Homeschooling has created self-starters who love to finish. WOW, I'll take that.

Mamma's Happy

I had to run to Wal-Mart to get a few groceries and lookie what I found. Apparently around Valentines Day there are pink tubs! Nice tubs for a normal price! I did have to get an employee for help. He scaled the wall in the garden area and pulled them down from on high. Poor guy. AND They had hangers. I am in organizational baby girl heaven!!! (The tubs are a deep pink they're not red like the picture appears)

No Joke!

Today was the day I was to get football relief. We've waited almost 3 weeks to have our new cable installed. Jared took the day off to be here when the guy arrived.

We were told they would be here between 12-5. At 1 pm our doorbell rang. A very whiny dude began to explain to Jared how installing the new cables in our home is practically impossible. Within 15 minutes he was convinced there was just no way and he said to Jared, "I don't do crawl spaces. I lost everything I had in a fire in '98."

Ummm okay. Not meaning to sound harsh but isn't this your job whiny dude? And the fire was 11 years ago. I told Jared he should have said, "Install the cable and if you need council I can help. It's what I do."

Unfortunately he just left. He refused to do the job he was sent to do and left. No joke.

Jared is now fit to be tied. He's been on the phone with DirecTv for at least 20 minutes already.
I'm not sure how this is going to pan out but unless they send someone out immediately I'm doomed to more football or Sponge Bob. Oh, and I have a beautiful TV in my room that is rendered useless until that stinking box is installed.

Full Circle

After a lot of debate Jared and I have finally come to an agreement on Anneliese's middle name.

There have been several names I have picked that had deep meaning to me that Jared just didn't like the sound or cadence. He has had several that sounded good but they had no meaning. This is our last baby, our only girl. I really wanted to make sure her name was not only beautifully unique but also had great meaning to us both. So we came up with the perfect fit. Not a compromise but the perfect name.

When Jared and I first started our journey towards having children it took 4 years and Clomid for us to finally conceive. After 14 weeks we were informed that the baby had died and apparently my body hadn't realized it yet. I ended up having a D&C and as you can imagine this was an extremely difficult time for us both. We had decided early on if it were a boy his name would be Keegan Patrick. For us the name has been linked to that baby and has great meaning and sentiment.

The other night Jared and I were watching TV and an actress was named Keegan Tracey. I just mentioned to Jared, "Hey, what about Anneliese Keegan?" Over the last few days it has really begun to grow on me so last night we started talking about it seriously. Jared and I both agree that it's unique and beautiful. Anneliese has been the name we've had picked out for our daughter for 9 years. Keegan is the name that represents the beginning of our journey and our first little peanut. It just makes sense and seems to bring us full circle.

Anneliese Keegan Altic. We greatly anticipate your arrival. Come quickly sweet angel.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

No Regrets

Last night while at my church's womens group a couple of us were discussing children. Another mom with 4 boys recently found out she was expecting. We were all excited for her and she is praying for pink :)

What I want to share is something Jared and I have been running into A LOT lately due to our own pregnancy. There seems to be two main camps when it comes to peoples opinions about our large family.

Camp #1-The older crowd. People our parents age or even a few years older than us who feel their child bearing years are over. The majority seem pleased, even excited for us. We've had total strangers approach us with great interest wanting to know if they are all ours and if the baby is a girl or another boy. We've had several people mention that they wished they had more children when they had the chance. The general consensus is children are great (even though it's difficult when they're young), have lots and you won't regret it later. Your Mercedes won't hug you back when you're 80. Larger families cost more but in the end no material possession has more worth than a child.

Jared and I have always felt it important to seek the wisdom of our elders (people with more life experience) when it comes to large life decisions. When we were praying about baby number 5 we talked to several people including our church's Eldership and we were given great encouragement to go ahead. Children are a blessing from the Lord.

Camp #2-The younger crowd. This largely consists of people our age and younger. There are those in the throws of parenting young children and they can't see the light at the end of the disciplinary tunnel just yet. The idea of taking care of 5 children overwhelm them and the say we are "crazy." Little do they realize that those rambunctious 2 year olds turn into loving caring and even helpful 8 year olds eventually.

Then there are those that are not yet married or just married who don't understand the overwhelming love that comes when you have a child of your own. They see all the needs of the child and the demands on the parent's time and resources and think, "No thanks."

I don't expect people to understand our desire for a large family. I would appreciate people taking a minute to observe our family and respect our decision knowing it was not something that just happened to us through our ignorance. Our family is purposeful and we got here through a lot of prayer and dependence on God's guidance. We have 4 well behaved respectful little boys that make parenting fun and rewarding. It's our love for them that gave us the desire for one more.

A mother in our group last night said it best, "It's not the children you have that you regret, it's those you decided not to have that give you pause."

INTRODUCING (insert fanfare here).....

Princess Anneliese



I babysit my neighbor Anita's little girl Nadia. When dropping Nadia off this morning Anita handed me a small package shaped like a castle. When I looked inside I found "Princess Anneliese."

Apparently Barbie put out a princess barbie that shares our precious name. Anita's boss has a close friend who's name is Anneliese and when she heard of our little girl this total stranger thought our Anneliese had to have a doll that shared her name. What a thoughtful gift!

I started doing some research and found out that there is an entire line of stuff (of course). There's movies, full sized barbies and even dress up outfits for little girls that match Princess Anneliese. Amazingly I have been completely unaware. The boys aren't too interested in Barbie.

It may seem silly but I am thrilled that there are dolls, princesses that share her name and even spell it the same. I can remember as a young teen when the movie Far and Away came out and the lead female's name was Shannon. Jared recalled a show he watched when he was younger where the lead male role was Jared and even though the show wasn't very good he still watched (believe it or not when we were younger Jared was a rare name).

I plan on storing her little Princess Anneliese away for a day that she can appreciate that they share a namesake.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Randomness

-The dogs are bathed, the kennels are clean and the bean bag has been laundered. Ahh, all I can smell is home made banana bread in the oven.

-66 days (hopefully less) until my baby girl is out of my belly and into my arms. I asked Jared to pray for me the other night. He quickly responded, "I always do." I'm not sure if I should be offended or thankful :) I then specified that I either need to find patience to last the next several weeks or I need God to make the time pass quickly. The discomfort is mounting and my patience is about extinct. This would qualify as a "give me the baby" insert.

-After tinkering with our water softener I was able to get about 2 weeks worth of soft water out of it until it went kaput again. I finally broke down and bought the expensive part it needs online and we are patiently waiting for it's arrival. Once it's installed I will have to treat all our glass ware again with the vinegar baking soda bath. It's shocking how quickly the calcium begins to build up.

-Our cable will be installed on Thursday between 12 and 5. Don't you love the precise appointments companies like this give. I hope I don't have ANYTHING to do for 5 hours while I wait for their arrival. It's worth it however, football relief is mine!

-After months of toying with potty training I do believe Graham is trained. We're still struggling with #2 but as far as #1 we're golden (oh my, I was just rereading this and realized the pun, sorry not intentional yet hilarious). He is going all day without a pull-up and no longer has to be nude from the waist down to prevent accident. He now can wear pants and even underwear (Cars underwear are his favorite). We still have the occasional mess up but for the most part he is great! We even went to church and he went all morning Sunday and all evening Wednesday without incident. GO GRAHAM!

-Life is good, God is good. I am amazed every day by His plan and His will. Our family feels so blessed by the 5 little people God has granted.

Monday, January 12, 2009

No More, No Less

I have a couple pieces of advice to give all women. DO NOT ever buy an animal when you strongly desire a child. The dog, cat, hamster etc will not ever fill the need you have and instead of being fulfilled you will still desire a child PLUS have the added responsibility of a creature for the duration of it's lifespan.

For example, I begged Jared for a fru fru dog or a baby. He bought me a dog within 48 hours. I love Maury and think he's adorable. The problem is that he's a dog. So after a few months the desire for a child increased and Jared saw the error of his ways and now we have a baby girl due in a matter of weeks. Oh and I still have Maury.

Another piece of advice is DO NOT ever get rid of an animal during or directly after a pregnancy. While preparing for our new bundle I have at any given time been more than willing to give away all of our animals (6 hamsters, 2 dogs, and a cat for you keeping count). I do not appreciate the added responsibilities they bring.

Yesterday we had company and I kept thinking that the dogs smelled really bad. The problem was that I was smelling the same odor when they weren't around. Today I decided to clean the kennels and bathe the dogs to rid our home of the nasty odors. I started with Maury's kennel and found he apparently ate a leaf and then vomitted all over his bedding. Umm EWWWW!

Then after cleaning his kennel it still smelled in the office so I started on Sophie's kennel only to find she apparently had a bowel movement in her kennel the night before. I took it outside and hosed it out all the while secretly wishing their demise.

Both dogs in the last 10 days have started waking up in the middle of the night. Around 2:30 am they absolutely lose their minds wailing at the top of their mugs and scratching at the doors. Jared has been letting them out but everything I've read says DO NOT do that because they'll continue the behavior whenever they want out of the kennel. Only let them out when they are calm. So I refused to let them out when it was up to me and apparently Sophie decided to leave me a gift for my discipline. I simply warned them with our remote zapper (warning w/o shocking). They quieted down and I thought I had won the battle. I was wrong.

I was also woke up this morning to Brennan saying, "Mom Elijah's needs wiped and Kayla (the cat) puked all over the bean bag."

When I am calm and not currently cleaning up after the nasty beasts I am thankful for the addition they are to our family. When I am up to my elbows in all their disgustingness while being 8 months pregnant with 4 children I want to...well...hurt them.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Show Me The Cable!

Jared and I bought a really nice television for our bedroom about 3 weeks ago. It's amazing and I absolutely love it. As soon as we purchased it we called our cable provider (DirecTV) to install a receiver in our bedroom.

Jared literally spent 2 hours on the phone with a "resolution specialist" trying to get the best deal for our family. We have been faithful (addicted) customers for 8 1/2 years and thought that counted for something. After a lot of talking and being transferred from one person to the next we finally got a GREAT deal and I will have a HDTivo in my room as well as one in the living room. All this while not increasing our monthly bill, in fact it went down. Yes, Jared is just that good :)

The problem is they gave us 2 weeks until it will all be installed. So in the meantime I am being tortured with football (college & NFL) with no means of escape. By the time they finally get it all installed football season will be over or at least nearly so. I will enjoy having HGTV, and DHC as well as many others at my discretion and will be able to record things at my leisure without the worry of it being deleted to make room for old movies and documentaries. It is quite exciting, I just want it now :)

**In the living room Jared is watching football on the TV while his computer sits in his lap. I can hear football on the computer as well. He's watching some highlights or something. HELP HELP HELP :)**

Random Thoughts 1/10/09

-I'm a little concerned right now. My 2 year old is still asleep and it's 11. Jared left a night light on his room when he hadn't ever had one before. I don't know if he just stayed up late due to the light or what. Regardless he's snoozing away with a precious angelic look on his face.

-My blow dryer started outright sparking when I used it so I finally replaced it. I bought a nice looking dryer at Target that apparently the manufacturer never actually used. It has to be the most awkward dryer created. When you grip the handle normally it either turns it off, turns it to low air, or turns it to low heat. Plus there's this weird dial at the top of the handle where my index finger desperately wants to reside. The dial then gets slid in the wrong direction and it sends non ionized air (whatever that means). It's going back.

-The ticker on the side of the page is awesome. It says today that we have 69 days left or 9 weeks and change. That's quite a departure from when I first put it up and we had over 250 days to go. My goodness I'm going to see her soon!

-I know that some people find mid-drifts sexy, but I'm guessing it's not on an 8 month pregnant chick. I have officially gotten to the point where my shirts are NOT long enough to cover my large belly. It's a little comical and somewhat concerning to be scarring my children for life by exposing my middle to all short people (there's enough of an angle you really have to be under 4ft to see it). As boys they are weirded out by my exposed belly.

-I love sugar free Tropical Punch Kool-Aid. It's yummy, cold, sweet and sugar free. I've been drinking it by the gallon. I can't imagine it can hurt to be really hydrated at this stage.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Is It a Conspiracy?

I want pink hangers. Is that too much to ask? I've checked Wal-Mart and Target on MULTIPLE occasions and there aren't ever any pink hangers.

Well, there were some yesterday at Wal-Mart but they had the cardboard removed and were just loose on the rod with no UPC and I wasn't even sure if all 10 were there.

There are 5 men in my house. It may seem ridiculous but I would like to have pink hangers for the precious little bitty pink clothes. Oh, and a couple pink tubs for clothing storage. I'm not quite understanding why I can buy a gray tub that's big enough to put a couple children in (not that I would, I've seen the warning on the lid) for $9 yet a tiny pink tub of half the quality and a fourth of the size costs the same. Is the pink dye that rare and expensive that it increases the cost of production?

I was explaining my horrible dilemma to my husband this morning and when I finally made eye contact with him all I received was a smirk. I was telling him how much easier my life would be with pink storage tubs nicely labeled 0-3, 3-6, 6-9, 9-12 in our attic space so I could just open the door and quickly spot the tub that I needed. Or better yet be able to send one of the older boys into the attic to retrieve the tub for me.

He gave me a loving nod and then began explaining that 50% of all pregnant women are having girls and they too are irrationally insisting on pink hangers and pink tubs. That should explain why the hangers are hard to find. As for the cost of the tubs, it's simply because Wal-Mart knows irrational pregnant chicks like myself are nesting and will pay $9 for a tiny pink tub.

Well, not me Wal-Mart! I refuse to succumb to your crafty ploys. As far as the hangers are concerned, I will find them. I'm sure there are tiny pink hangers to be had somewhere!

Ahh Relief!

My obgyn called just a few minutes ago to inform me that the blood sugars they drew from my veins yesterday were not as high as the readings I was getting on the monitor I was using!! YAY!

Apparently it doesn't read accurately and as long as I watch my weight and don't over do on the simple sugars and simple carbs we will be just fine.

This is such relief. I can watch what I eat and give my fingers a rest. I still need to steer clear from the really yummy stuff like cakes and cookies simply because my sugar likes to bottom out after such wonderful treats. I can handle that!

Praise God.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Chinese Torture?

I had my three hour lab work this morning and it was an exercise in torture. First they starved me for 12 hours and then drown me in orange sugar water that has to be from Satan himself.

In the 3 hours I was there my blood sugar went from 71-245-187-48. Needless to say by the time I was done I was not only exhausted and physically drained but I left with a diagnosis of Gestational Diabetes and a bad headache.

I really would think that after the obvious 245 they'd let me be but alas it doesn't work that way. They wanted to see how my body reacted over time and needless to say it wasn't good.

The worst part was that when I left the office I was stinking starving, shaking and having a hard time walking a straight line. Try explaining that to an officer. "umm Sir, I'm not drunk I promise. They hopped me up on sugar after starving me for 12 hours." Perfectly reasonable. I immediately headed to Wendy's for their lower carb chili only to feel progressively worse. After I inhaled the chili and a mozzarella bread stick from QT and 52 oz of diet Mountain Dew I started feeling better.

Wow, please Lord don't ever make me do that again. Now I just have to settle into life without sugar at least for the next few weeks until I meet my daughter. I can do that :)

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Control Freak

I am excited to say that I am in control! I have been very careful with my eating today and I haven't had a blood sugar above 91!!

I'm not hungry because I'm having to eat about every 2 hours to keep it from dropping but I've been eating little bits of complex carbs and lotsa protein.

Being aware it's only day 1 since this all came about, still it is definitely a boost of encouragement to know that I can do it. My fingers are sore because I'm a testing fool but I just want to know exactly what affects it and what doesn't.

Egg drop soup from Evergreen in Bonner (sans crunchies) was a yummy filling lunch that didn't seem to affect my sugar at all. That is very exciting since it's one of my most favoritist things in da whole wide world. I also picked up Weight Watcher's string cheese and cheddar cheese single serving snacks. They have little to no carbs and are still just a point a piece. The best part is they fit nicely in my purse.

The test will be tonight at church when we have our Wednesday night family night. We have dinner together and there are usually some amazing desserts that I'll have to say no to. I bought everything to make some sugar free jello jigglers and they'll have to do.
10 Week Count Down!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I'm not sure if I should have started counting down last week or not. I am a full 30 weeks on Friday so should I have counted down 10 weeks including the 30th week or now that I'm 30 weeks do we start. I'm confused :)

Either way we are getting wonderfully close to seeing our little girl (who still doesn't have a middle name). One good thing about gestational diabetes is that we're pretty much guaranteed to see her before 40 weeks simply due to her size.

Graham has napped in the big bed and did great so tonight we'll try him out for all night. Now I can start decorating!!! YAY! God is SO good.




Tuesday, January 6, 2009

It's Complicated Part 2

The doctor called. I have to go in Thursday for a 3 hour lab test and I have to see a nutritionist to figure out this whole carb thing.

I really thought it would be easy for me to figure out carbs since I'm the diet queen but honestly it's a little intimidating. I can figure points at a glance but balancing carbs with proteins while watching portions and sticking my fingers every couple hours? YUCK!

I have spent the last 7 years of my life watching what I eat and trying to be healthy so I know I can do it. I've always said that watching what I eat is difficult when I'm growing bigger daily but this is more than enough motivation to get in gear.

This little girl is the world to me and I will do anything to insure her health and safety.

It's Complicated

Apparently I'm a little high maintenance. I really try to be healthy. I eat right and exercise. I may lose my mind a little during pregnancy but for the majority of the time I make it my goal to be healthy.

Over the last couple weeks I've been feeling, umm icky? I've had a couple occasions when my blood sugar seems to have dropped into the scary zone so I eat uncontrollably and feel better for the most part. I have serious fatigue after one of these episodes. Since I wasn't real sure what was going on with my body I asked my mom-in-law to borrow her blood glucose monitoring kit. I just figured when I felt "icky" I would take it and just see what it says and report back to the doc.

Normal blood sugar should run in the low 100's. In one of these low stages my sugar was 38. I honestly felt like I was going to pass out. I ate some food and then felt better.

This morning however I didn't feel well at all after I ate my morning bowl of cereal. I just had some plain shredded wheat and skim milk. Sounds harmless. I just kept feeling worse and worse so I thought I'd check my sugar. It was 175. Within 2 hours it was back down to 54.

I called my obgyn who is out of the office until tomorrow. The nurse was kind and said she'd check with the doc on call but wanted to know if I was familiar with gestational diabetes.

How would you define familiar? I know what it is, know what the affects can be, and I know I don't want to have it. That's familiar enough for me.

Needless to say I know what's coming but I'm not happy about it and I'm scared. I will do whatever I can to make sure Anneliese and I are as healthy as possible but there are several complications that could happen and as a 8 month pregnant chick my hormones won't let me ignore those.

We are heading into the doctor's office as soon as they call. I appreciate your prayers for me and my soon to be gargantuan baby girl (huge baby is a side effect & have you seen mine when I don't have G.D.? EEK!)

Monday, January 5, 2009

Big Boy?

I am debating about whether or not to put Graham in his big bed. We have a beautiful crib out in the garage that is waiting to be put together. I really want to start getting Anneliese's room ready and moving Graham out is a necessity.

The age distance between the younger two will be the largest age difference we've had. They are a full 3 years apart. With previous additions we've always had to move the toddler by now. We just haven't had any issues with Graham crawling out of bed. It's super easy to just put him in there and call it good.

We usually keep the baby with us for the first 3 or 4 months until they are sleeping through the night so there is really no reason to move him other than I want to decorate. I am also concerned about him handling being in with the big boys. We may have to go to bed in shifts so he has a head start before the bigger boys head in. Right now we have 2 sets of bunk beds in the main room upstairs so all 4 will be in one room. They actually prefer it that way for now. I'm sure things will change as they get bigger.

We have 3 bedrooms upstairs and right now there's the boys "dorm," a spare room, and the nursery. Jared and I have talked about it quite a bit and we figure that as the boys near the 6ft mark we will eliminate the spare room and separate the boys 2 to a room while Anneliese has her own room.

It's really not that difficult it's just trying to decide how much sleep we're willing to go without while Graham handles the transition :)

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Attention Attention!!

Are you wanting to eat healthier? How about cheaper? I have great news but you have to act fast.

From now until Tuesday the 6th area Price Choppers are having a "Healthier You" sale.

They have boneless skinless chicken breasts on sale for $1.19/pound. That's ridiculously cheap for those of you who don't know the price of chicken. We eat tons of chicken and this will save our family significantly over the next couple months. I bought chicken (and some beef) today and spent $121.00 but saved $111.00. They had to call a manager over to my register to approve the sale because I saved soo stinkin much. YAY! It's a bit of a hit at first financially but the savings over the next few months will be wonderful.

As a Weight Watcher we eat primarily chicken breasts and lean ground beef. They also have their 93% lean ground beef on sale for $2.29/pound. For all you WW members out there this is a Filling Foods Fantasy! Go hog wild, or at least Go Healthy Portion Wild!

For those of you who love those quick frozen foods Price Chopper's lean cuisine meals are 50% off of their normal prices. There are several of these that I absolutely love. They are quite tasty and have the points values on the side of the box.

I am not an advocate for New Years Resolutions but I am an advocate for a healthier you (and me) and the best way to achieve that is to purge your house of the unhealthy junk and fill it with yummy health conscience options. If you fail to plan you plan to fail. Take advantage of this sale and all the other "deals" out there right now targeting those who have decided weight loss is a goal for 09'. Just be an exception and make life changes for you and your family!

YAY cheap healthy food!!

***Update...Our friend Pat B. went and spent $140 on chicken but saved $275. Now that's a deal.***

Friday, January 2, 2009

Installment #1 Of Give Me The Baby

Today marks the beginning of week 30. I have said for years that the purpose of the last 10 weeks of pregnancy is to make you look forward to birth.

I am reaching the "are we there yet" phase of pregnancy and I'm struggling a bit today with the idea of weeks and weeks of waiting. I'm sure I'll be better tomorrow but for now I'm a bit impatient.

Elijah had a bit of a breakdown today and I had to discipline him. The problem was that he had decided to retreat to the far corner of his top bunk. This forced me to scale the bunk bed in order to reach his delicate rear. It took me not one, not two, but 3 attempts to get onto that top bunk. Once Eli and I had our discussion about his behavior I slid down off the bunk headed down stairs for a nap. Whew I am too pregnant/fat to be climbing bunk beds.

My weight is at an all time high post Weight Watchers (even with my previous pregnancies). Every time I decide to get in gear and watch what I eat I fail miserably. I even decided to start this morning walking just 15 minutes a day figuring it would help and such a small amount wouldn't affect my hip. I woke up with it already hurting so I didn't go.

Graham came up to my belly today and said, "it's too big, it goes higher higher and bigger bigger." I'm feeling it and eager to lose my second chin I've aquired.

I have no doubt the time will pass quickly and she'll be here before we know it. I'm just super ready for that next step. I apologize but I'm sure there will be many more installments before she's born :)