Sunday, September 30, 2012

"Just play"

A couple weeks ago, I went with Richard and the kids to tour the medical school that he wants to attend. Richard had been before, and coupled with the fact that the head admissions counselor over the school that Richard has become close with wanted to meet the family and that Richard wanted me to see the school, convinced me us to make the trip. I will say it was worth it, even though the trip down was the sickest I have ever been in this pregnancy...let's just say that I didn't keep anything down until dinner. Anyways, it was a great tour, the kids were great and I love the school!
While we were there, he introduced us to a second year medical school student who was LDS, had 3 kids and has been successful. We picked his brain on his schedule, how they are making it (the first 2 years of medical school are supposedly horrendously busy) and finally, what advice he had. His biggest piece of advice was this: "you have a year before school starts, don't worry about pre-emptively studying or studying past things you learned (which is exactly what Richard was planning on doing), just play." He explained that the first 2 years of medical school we will hardly see him, so we need to just spend this whole year building up a "reserve" and just relax before the storm.
Since then, we have taken his advice whole heartedly.
Every second we have that Richard isn't working or we aren't doing something necessary, 
we just play.
And let me tell you, I AM IN HEAVEN.
It has been a crazy past 3 years, so we have deserved this.
Busy playing legos
I LOVE this picture of Brielle :)
 Liams favorite pastime: swinging!

So like I said, we have whole heartedly taken the advice
and we are either at the park, berry picking, at the beach, feeding the ducks, playing legos/blocks etc or doing something fun,
whenever we can.
This has become our new life motto.

Monday, September 24, 2012

The fruit of our labors

I decided to take a break from a marathon laundry afternoon (have I mentioned I LOVE having a washer and dryer 2 steps from our rooms?!)  while Brielle is napping and Liam is having quiet time, and post a fun evening we had last week, cause I don't want to forget it.

Last week Richard came home from work a little early so that we could go down the street and pick the huge, ripe blackberries from the bushes that grow like weeds all over our hometown. Seriously, they are everywhere. This time of year you can pretty much stop anywhere and pick delicious blackberries! 

the kids lost interest in picking after awhile and played in the rocks.
Liam is in mid-throw in this picture. See the rock?
She looked like the cutest zombie baby ever :)
They were perfectly ripe blackberries.
Brielle and Liam would eat some berries, go play and 10 seconds later come back for more.
They love berry picking and boy, do they live in the right city!!

We picked so many yummy berries that I made my first pie of the fall season!
Even with a pie, we had to freeze about 3 more cups of berries!

I combined about 3 pie recipes and tried a new pie crust recipe,
and boy was it a huge success! 
It wasn't runny at all, and it wasn't too sweet or too tart.
 I need to make it again so I can record the exact recipe, cause we were fans.

Beautiful changing leaves,
yummy ripe berries everywhere,
weather that is starting to get cold,
apple trees full of apples...
I love fall in the Pacific Northwest!!! of course, I got only 1/4 through this post and Brielle woke up and Liam was done with quiet time. This post comes to mind...

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Sweet-pea #3

Yes, it is true. So wonderfully true.
We go from a family of 4 to a family of five at the end of March (I am due the 29th)
Even though I am 3 months (12 weeks) a long and pretty much in the 2nd trimester, I am still shocked.

I am so excited.
So ready.
And a little nervous.

This baby is our "planned surprise" (more on that below)
I am due a month after Liams 3rd birthday, which means we will have 3 kids in 3 years.
But as hard as it might be at times, I know that I can do it.
I love being a mama so much and I wouldn't have it any other way.

Plus watching how excited Liam is to have another baby, makes me all the more ecstatic
He will regularly hug me around the stomach and kiss my growing belly while saying 
"Hi my baby. I love you so much. Whats your name? My name is Liam."
He loves to talk about the fact that his baby is growing next to my tummy 
and how he is so excited to play with it when it's big enough to come out.
Talk about the cutest thing ever.

I love watching our little family grow.
Getting to know and completely adore each spirit we get to welcome into our family.
I have said it before and I will say it again. We are addicted to having babies.
I can't wait to see our 3 littles together, loving each other and playing together.
March, please come fast.

So for those of you who are interested (and for the sake of journaling), here is the story: Last year, when we had been planning for Richard to start Podiatry school this August (in 2012) right after finishing his bachelors degree, we had decided to wait a while and space Brielle and our third out 2+ years, to give us time to get settled into our new life and school. 
Then around April this year, two things happened/changed. 1. Richard decided to go to medical school instead and because of the timing of things, he wouldn't be able to start medical school for a year after he finished his bachelors degree and pre-requisites (fall 2013). And that we would be moving home to live close to my parents so Richard could work for that year. The year off school sounded like the perfect time to have another baby, so we started praying... 2. we started having some neat experiences that made us realize, it was the right time to seriously consider having another baby. 
So at the beginning of June, after just weaning Brielle, we decided to stop birth control. Soon after stopping, we did the math and realized that would mean I would be newly pregnant, sick and exhausted right as we were moving out of state and during Richards finals. With the timing of Richards classes and our move, I would have zero help from him, except 1 day to load the car. So we decided to just use the "rhythm method" as birth control until after our move. Apparently, that wasn't enough. But we were too involved with moving, Richards finals and life to think about it much. Until the first week of July when I was almost a week late getting my period. At first I didn't think about it, because I had just weaned Brielle, and I figured my body just needed some time to "get back to normal".
Then one morning, I woke up and I felt off. Super off. And it hit me. "I am pregnant". But like before, I filed it away to focus on the move, plus we weren't "trying" and we had been careful. A couple days later I took one of the kids to the doctor and mentioned my late period to him. So he sent me in for the 2 kinds of pregnancy tests to rule that out. Both came out negative. I waited a couple more days and still no period. I felt like I should go in to get another blood test done, so that pregnancy could be ruled out for the reason my period was now almost 2 weeks late. I had the test done, and when they called for the results they told me "a blood level of 2 or lower is negative. Your level is 13. Doctor wants you to come in in 48 hours to have the test done again to see if it keeps rising." I was shocked. Totally shocked. And anxiously waited the 48 hours. Richard was certain I was pregnant since with both our kids we got pregnant in the month we stopped birth control, so he said it made sense to him that would happen again. He was busting at the seams with excitement!
At this point, I was frantically packing us for our move in a week while Richard finished finals. Quite a stressful interesting time to be dealing with this. But I was SO anxious to find out. I was afraid Richard was  getting his hopes up in vain, so the morning I had the 3rd blood test taken at the doctor, I broke down and bought a pregnancy test. I didn't want to wait the day it would take to get the blood test results back. As soon as we got home, I took the test and this is what I saw: 
The second line showed up right away and my suspicions were confirmed! I was so excited! Once I saw the second line, Liam and I (who watched me take the test) did an elaborate "yay-moms-having-another-baby" dance, right there in the bathroom! I realized Richard would be home soon so we quickly made this to put on the door for him to see when he got home from school:
Needless to say, he was so excited when he walked in and I explained the sign with my positive test.

The next morning, the doctors office called and said that my levels had gone up to 50 in 48 hours, which was way higher than they wanted (a 26 was what they were hoping for at least) and that I was definitely pregnant. I was so shocked for a couple weeks. I couldn't believe it, but so excited to be pregnant again. We were going to start trying a couple weeks later once we got settled in WA anyways, so our plan just came a couple weeks early :) (hence the "planned surprise")
The timing is perfect though and I am so glad we decided to stop the birth control when we did, even though it didn't make sense at the time. We will have a 5 month old when we move to medical school and we will be living right next to my parents the entire pregnancy and the first 5 months (aka the hardest time) with my mom almost next door. It's perfect.
This entire pregnancy has been perfect. My levels always doubled faster than they should, ultrasounds have been perfect (baby is measuring a day ahead), and we were able to hear the heartbeat via. doppler the last 2 appointments! Just like it's siblings, this baby is very very active (which the doctor confirmed when she tried to find the heartbeat via doppler and "sweetpea" kept dodging her and running away!) so I have already felt the baby move!!!! That's my favorite part of pregnancy! 
Probably because of the stress of moving, the exhaustion from the kids getting up more than normal at night as they have gotten settled in etc. I have felt more sick with this pregnancy. Almost constantly nauseous and tired. But, since I am pretty much in the second trimester, I have started to feel a little better recently. 

We are SO excited to have another little sweet pea coming to our house soon
And the fact that in march,
we will have 3 peas in our pod.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

What comes with change.

Moving with 2 very young littles is not for the weak-hearted.
Especially if it means a new house and a new town, new church and new friends.
And even more so if the house you moved from was the only one your kids have lived in.
Not so fun.

Anyways, our schedule and norms of life have been completely changed and messed up.
Sleeping schedules, arrangements, eating etc. 
Not all of them have been bad though. Liam has become an excellent eater since we moved.
But one of the biggest things that has changed is that since moving, Liam has refused to take naps.
Even though he is super tired, he absolutely won't step into his room or lay on his bed until bedtime, 
no matter what I do.
One of the best things about this change though, is that he is (usually) in bed by 7pm and sleeps until about 8am, so I am not complaining.
But the poor guy is so worn out by around 2 or 3, that if we go in the car for errands there is a strong chance he will zonk out.
He has probably done that like 2 times before our move. He NEVER slept in the car in his first 2 1/2 years of life.
I tied his head down with a tie because no matter what I did, it would flop forward in
the most uncomfortable way ever.
note: I did fix his head as soon as I possibly could.
There are so many other times I should have taken a picture of other funny Liam-sleeping-in-the-car moments.
But, I have to say that looking in the rear-view mirror and watching him in the process of falling asleep is one of the cutest things ever.

So as the change occurs, a disturbance is usually present.
And usually good.
It hasn't been the easiest thing adjusting to no naps for Liam, but I have loved the extra time with him.
heres to hoping that as things settle down more and he gets more used to our new life, naps will return...
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