Friday, August 26, 2011


Look at him grow!

One month, two months, three months

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Getting used to new

We have had a lot of "new" around here recently. Actually, for the past year we have had a lot of new. For someone (Matthew) who does not like change, we have done a TON of it.

Let's see, what are some of the changes that have happened in the past three months:

  • added a new member to our family (the BEST change to date!)
  • although it may not seem like a big change to you-going from school year to summer and from summer to school year. This is a big change for our family because we are together the whole summer and then all of a sudden, we're not.
  • Matthew changing jobs
  • Nora starting kindergarten
  • Elyn starting a new pre-school
  • a new schedule of getting up and going to bed

I realize that these changes might seem minor to some (except the addition of a child...that's a biggie) but to us, they mean a lot of readjusting and changing our view of things.

One of the biggest changes, that I did not put in the list, affects me. This is the first semester since Nora has been alive that I have not taught for Harding. It makes me so sad.

I knew it was coming, enrollment has really gone down the past few semesters. I think it is mostly due to the declining economy. I had been watching the numbers for my classes and, when they didn't go up, I figured I would get a call that they were taking those classes off of the fall schedule.

The call came earlier this week and, while I was expecting it, it still hit me hard.

I was at home alone (well, actually, nursing Rives) and took the call. I was all, "Oh, I understand completely...yes, yes, hopefully the numbers will pick up by next semester...again, I understand...thank you for calling!"

Then, I hung up and started crying.

There is nothing worse than sitting on the couch, nursing your baby and crying-wait...that was the first month of Nora's life.

I kid.

Seriously though, I was crying...hard.

This job was important to me in so many ways.

I LOVED going to class each week and talking with ADULTS. When Nora was a baby, and then again when Elyn was a baby, I sometimes felt that the only times I had adult conversations was when I went to class. I know I wasn't the best teacher or the most creative, but I enjoyed it and think my students learned one or two things.

It was also important to me financially. You know the whole "pulling my weight" thing. (Not really, but kind of.) This income was important to our family and our budget. We KNOW that God will help us meet our needs and that we will be FINE. This is probably good for will force us to re-prioritize and spend our money wisely and not frivolously. There is something God is going to teach us through this dip in our income...and I am looking forward to sharing and glorifying His name.

Honestly, it was also important for my pride. Typical conversation: Random person-"So, what do you do? Do you stay at home with your kids?" Me-"Yes, I do stay at home with them BUT I also am an INSTRUCTOR AT A LOCAL UNIVERSITY (pause for effect), I teach GRADUATE LEVEL CLASSES." Random person-"Oh, WOW, you must be the smartest person EVER!" Me-"Yes, I am."

Okay, so it might not have gone exactly like that, but similar. I enjoyed being able to share that I worked at Harding, that I had a "thinking" job outside of my main "job" of watching my children grow.

Again, God might be taking this opportunity for me to slow down and get used to the "new" that this school year has to offer. I am so thankful that my time with my children and my husband will be completely theirs and my mind will not be preoccupied with planning lessons or grading papers.

Listen, I am THE PERSON to find the bright side of things...if you are looking for a "glass half full" kind of person, I'm your gal. I am not looking for you (all two of you) to offer up positive and cheery comments (although, I am not discouraging them either)...I've already thought of all the positive and cheery things that might come out of my unemployment. This was just a writing session for me to get my thoughts down.

This new change has been on my heart quite a bit lately and I need LET IT GO and enjoy my new "freedom". I have told some friends that I am going to be a pro at clipping coupons and my house is going to be super clean...

I just need to get started on both.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

3 months old


This sweet boy turned 3 months old yesterday!  I cannot imagine our lives without him!

Do you see that smile that he is showing off in his picture?  Well, we are lucky enough to see that smile multiple times a day, sometimes followed by a precious giggle.  We love him so much!

He is such a good baby.  I tell every single person that comments on his pleasant personality that he is THE BEST BABY EVER!  I think I might be giving him a big head already.  But he deserves it!  He is the best! 

His sisters were sweet babies as well but no where as near as easy as he has been.  I don’t know if it is because he is a boy or if it is because he is the third and forced to go with the flow, but I’d take 10 more just like him.

He makes me melt with one little look.  I could eat him up and steal millions of kisses every day.

I want him to stay exactly this age forever…please Rives, stay just like this.

Here is what he is up to:

  • Eats during the day, every three hours.  Bless his heart.  He usually “eats out”.  I am either feeding him in the van, a building, a restaurant or someone else’s house.  He rarely gets a meal at home.  Thankfully, I am ALWAYS with him so his food is readily available.
  • Quite a few people have asked about his schedule.  I have no idea what it is other than he eats every 3 hours.  I don’t know what his nap schedule looks like or his optimal play time.  I’m horrible.  Most of his naps are in his car seat and I throw him on the floor to roll around when we get an opportunity.  Poor third kid.
  • Speaking of rolling around…he has rolled from tummy to back a few times.  I have yet to capture one of those times on video though.  It seems like every time I pull it out he doesn’t want to perform.  Camera shy, I guess.
  • He is “talking” quite a bit.  He imitates us and oohs and ahhs a lot.  So sweet!
  • He is a fabulous sleeper!  He typically goes to bed between 8 and 8:30 at night and will sleep until 4:30-5:30.  If I went to sleep when he did I would be very well rested.  But, I haven’t gotten that smart yet.  As far as naps, see above.
  • His sisters still love him like crazy.  Elyn tells me a lot that we have the best baby (possibly because she hears me say it all the time-ha!).  They are so good with him!  Nora cracks me up because sometimes she’ll be in the living room with him while Matthew and I are in different rooms of the house.  She’ll yell, “Mom, can you take care of Rives now?” Ha ha!  I didn’t realize I had asked her to babysit.
  • He has horrible cradle cap!  We try to wash his hair at least three times a week with Selsun Blue and a toothbrush.  It has gotten better and is starting to flake off (baby dandruff alert) but he still has a bad case!
  • He is starting to wear 3-6 month clothes.  The 0-3 month ones are definitely getting to be too small.  I still shove him in them sometimes because I haven’t switched his drawers over.  He is also still being shoved into a size one diaper.  I am trying to finish up the last box and then I will move on to the super comfy/roomy size two diapers.
  • He shows no preference of “stationary holders” (bouncy seat, swing, etc.).  He’s pretty content to sit in any of them.
  • I think I’m his favorite because he does light up like I’m a rock star when he sees me…I am the food source, afterall.
  • He is an excellent car traveler! Thank goodness!  We drive many miles a day taking his sisters to and from school.  We went on a long trip in June and have made a few shorter trips since then.  Again, very laid back personality (fingers crossed it stays that way!)
  • His eyes have ALREADY turned brown.  My dream of having a blue-eyed baby have been destroyed…sigh.
  • He is able to grab toys that are hanging over his head and enjoys kicking toys with his foot too.
  • I was singing to him yesterday and he started crying…hmmmmm.

He is such a perfect addition to our family!  When the girls are having their dramatic episodes and I am at the end my rope with their emotions, I look at his sweet face and think, “You’re my favorite child such a blessing!”

We love you so much Rives!

Monday, August 01, 2011

First day of school!

It has begun…school!!!!!


I cannot believe that Nora started kindergarten today!  It seems like we were just meeting her in the hospital! 

We went to her orientation last week, to meet her teacher and see her classroom…I cried on that day and couldn’t believe it.  I really didn’t think I would be so emotional.

I didn’t cry this morning at drop off but waited until we got back in the car. It really hit me that I wouldn’t be with her all day…for the rest of her life.  Sigh.

Here are some pictures of our morning.  I’ll add more when I download them off my phone.

Sassy girl…


I wish I could insert pictures here of our special breakfast and stellar devotional time BUT we, all 5, had to be in the car and heading down the road by 6:50 and I didn’t even have time to eat breakfast…I’m not sure what everyone else had.

Walking into the school building…


Standing in front of the building


Guess who?  It’s GIBSON!!!!!  What a blessing that Nora and Gibson are going to the same school!  I pray that these sweet girls always have a special bond!


How did this poodle and lobster (along with John David the octopus) go from these babies to…


These big girls looking at an iPhone…sniff, sniff!


Walking with daddy and Rives to her classroom…it was a bit like a red carpet event with all the parents taking pictures and video.


Finding her cubby to hang up her backpack…


First one at her table…


One last picture before we left our baby (and who was in charge of Elyn’s hair?  Sigh.  I can only do so much…at least she’s not in her pajamas!)


Up until this point, I was holding it together quite nicely.  No tears from this mama!  Then I got in the car and realized that she was about to experience so much that I might not ever know about.  I was no longer there to protect her and watch over her.  I cried then.

To ease Elyn (and me) into her first day without her BFF, we went to Krispy Kreme…it helped brighten her morning.



Rives enjoyed his first visit…the girl behind the counter even offered him a “hot now” donut-and she was serious.  Really?  He’s 2.5 months old…we like to wait until they are 3 months old to start introducing the “donut food group”.



We spent the day without Nora moving Matthew’s stuff from his old school over to his new school…good times.

We got to Nora’s school about 2 minutes after school was supposed to let out, anticipating a super long car rider line and thinking we could beat the traffic and drive right up to collect Nora.  We were wrong.  We waited in the line for 35 minutes before she got in our car.


Thirty. Five. Minutes.

Worth the wait though…

Coming to the car-


We went out for “first day of school” ice cream.  Thankfully it was about 104 degrees here today-perfect for excuse for ice cream (and a heat stroke).


We ate with two of her kindergarten buddies, Alex and Sterling.


It was a great first day for Nora.  We pumped her for info (of course) and she was happy to tell all about the day.  She liked her class and all the activities they did today.  She has already requested that I not walk her in to school tomorrow morning (sorry, I am going to baby) and that she can buy her lunch from the cafeteria (we decided one time a week she can buy).  As I type this, Matthew is reading the girls a story and about to put them in bed…and it’s not even 7:30!  Welcome back to the real world!

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