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Sunday, August 31, 2008

Baby Days of Summer

Just doing a little catch up blog. Backpack is growing fine. We went in for a 1 week check up. The doctor was concerned about his Jaundice. He didn't know if was jaundiced because of the bruising. But his bruising cleared so on Friday they did some lab work. I assume he's fine because they never got back to me, but I'll call on Tuesday. Anyway, he's surpassed his birth weight and had grown 1/2 an inch. We did have our first kids and me outing. The first outing is always the scariest for me. I've been sucked in the the Twilight saga. And last week when Travis was working late I finished the first book so the kids and I went to Target to get the second. That took a lot out of me, plus I should be still taking it easy. First, it was getting three ready (cleaned, clothed, diapered, well fed) and Trouble can no longer ride in the double stroller. But he was a good boy and stayed close. Even after the prep work he still wasn't thrilled about walking. Backpack did go with me yesterday to get my haircut, well more like an accidental chop. I told her to cut the dead ends off. Apparently, it was a little more dead than I thought.

I have forgotten about all the baby smells. Johnson baby shampoo and lotion, sour milk, that sickening sweet breast milk yellow baby poop, baby breath, baby skin... I've forgotten about baby sounds. Little sighs, frustrated gushy poops, puppy whimpers, grunts, sucking noises, little baby cries, frustrated cries, feed me cries. And the baby looks. I see a ghost, lost in thought, yawns, ohhh, ahhhs, hungry-bird-feed-me look, pure content, drunk-on-milk. Its all so sweet.

Anyway, I'm lamenting the end of summer. I love summer, everything about it. Some are predicting an early winter here. Oh I hope not. We've been busy this summer and was nice to have Travis home so much and to go camping, vacationing, to the pool, having barbecues. I do miss home and having family around. Especially Mom (Yaya) to whisk me away on shopping trips and lunch excursions. But she'll be here in a few short weeks when I'll be fully recovered and ready for some good outings.

But what truly is home? Our family is scattered throughout 5 different states now. Its nucleus is not longer in OR. I believe home is still OR. I believe that wherever we settle, the family will follow (at least my side). So that is a comforting future.

Enough crazy talk. You came here to see pictures. So here they are:

Backpacks room. Which he won't actually be in for another 3 months. Cute, nonetheless.

Travis' bathroom project.

Well, I figure another week of PJs and we can return to normal life. Don't tell, but I actually feel great (a bit tired, but think mostly due to Travis' recent addiction to animated Batman movies therefore staying up way past our bedtimes) and I'm milking it so I can read and just hold the little one as much as humanly possible.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Backpack Arrives

I just knew we were going to have the baby this weekend! I was suppose to see Dr. Billings at 10:22am on Friday, Aug. 22nd (I was 37 weeks on Sunday, Aug. 17th). And if this pregnancy was anything like the other two, then I was going to give birth within 24 hours of seeing the doctor on the 37th week of pregnancy. The reason I made my appointment so late in the week was to see if, in fact, it was the doctor who induced my labor by just checking me. So all week I stayed busy deep cleaning the house, getting all the baby stuff ready, doing all the laundry, washing sheets, making guest beds, packing the hospital bag, tying up loose ends, cleaning the animal cages all so when I got home from the hospital I could relax. Thursday rolled around and I woke up feeling okay, but more miserable as the day wore on. I did some more cleaning but relaxed while the kids napped. About 6:30pm Travis called because a storm was moving in and he needed the hole he cut in the bathroom roof to be covered up and his tools, siding, and shingles to be moved into the house. So I did that, got the kids dinner and went to a Girl Scout meeting. At the meeting I was feeling a little miserable and had a few slight contractions. After the meeting it struck me that I might actually have this baby tonight. Well I wanted to finish cleaning the house so the kids and I went to Wal-mart to get vacuum bags. We got home and I laid them down for the night (I was really grumpy now with the uncomfortable but slight contractions). I finished the cleaning the house. Travis called from work about 10:00pm and said that he might have to stay a few more hours at work, or he could come home. I told him he'd better come home. He got home at 10:30pm and timed my contractions while we watched volleyball, which were 5 mins apart, 1 min long. 11:30ish we called the hospital to let them know we were coming in, then called our good friend Elizabeth to come stay the night with the kids. She came right away and we got the hospital about midnight. I told the nurse to check me and send me home because I suddenly remembered that I was about to lose the ability to have full nights sleep for the next 2-3months and I wanted one more night of good sleep. HA HA! She made me de robe, put on the monitors and get into bed before she even checked me. I was between 4 and 5 centimeters dilated. Typical for me, as in I start real labor at 5 centimeters. We asked them to call Dr. Billings in so he could break my waters. They said they'd call him when I was almost ready to go. NO, I protested, my waters don't break on their own, call him in. Luckily, he was called in for someone else and when he finished with her he came to check me and broke my waters. That was about 2:30am and I was 7 centimeters dilated. Then I refused an IV and got a lecture from the Dr. and the nurse about the dangers of that...blah, blah, blah...I just wanted this thing out of me!! I just wanted to get this over with!! Then at 3pm I was in hard labor, contractions one on top of the other with just seconds in between and I thought I was going to die and Travis thought he was going to die...I only bit him once :-) Anyway, shortly before 4am I had a healthy baby boy! And all I kept saying was, "I'm glad this is over!!" Honestly, I love being pregnant, I love having the new baby and all that goes with it, but I dread labor (um, maybe I'll get an epidural with the next one...of course that is what I said when I had Dynomite).

Baby boy Backpack
22 Aug 08
6 lbs. 0 oz.
19.5 inches

My last belly picture. I took this knowing it would be my last. We have been taking these everyday throughout the pregnancy so Travis could put together a still photo movie showing the growth of the belly.

A happy family. Taken right after they got Backpack all cleaned up.

The kiddos with me. This was Friday afternoon (and after a shower!!).I even had the clothes laid out that I wanted them to wear to the hospital when they came to see me. Travis' shirt from Father's Day. And for the kids I stole the idea from Jerusha to have them put their hand prints on a shirt for when they came to visit the new baby.Dynomite was so adamant about holding the new baby. She's going to be a good helper for mommy.And this is the goofy picture they took at the hospital. But you can see all his blond hair and blue eyes.

Anyway, Travis was home by 6:30am get let Elizabeth go home. The kids had no idea, they weren't even up when he got home. And I got home Sunday afternoon. Backpack slept well last night. All I've got to do all day is sit and hold my new little baby. The kids played great and let me nap this morning while Travis had an eye appointment on base and got my pain meds. He took the kids to the splash pad this afternoon. I can already tell that this is going to be a much faster recovery. We're just going to take it easy and lounge around in our pjs all week. Thank you everyone for the support, phone calls, and visits!

Welcome to the world little guy!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Look what Travis did...

Story and updates later...

The porch that Travis built

Travis has taken the opportunity this summer to work on the house. Especially since this is the last full summer we have here and his work schedule is ten trillion million times better. So far he has laid new floor in the mud room, put in raised flower beds and planted new grass, put up new gutters around the garage, fixed our bathroom sink, tightened up the deck railing and other various odds and ends that needed to get done. A few weeks ago he tore up the old front porch. The old one was build with regular 2x4s and just painted over (and slightly crooked). Well, they rotted through. At one point it was so bad that the mailman wouldn't deliver the mail. So Travis had to do a quick fix. He decided that there were so many leftover pieces from the upstairs deck that he would just use those. It worked great! After he put up a sturdy, level base using treated wood (wood that isn't going to rot!) he used the deck odds and ends as the floor and used the same railing as the upstairs deck. It turned out mighty fine.

Here you can the the brick work design of the floor of the porch:

Here is a picture of Dynomite sitting on the porch. That monkey is what she sleeps with. She like to read him stories. On the left side of the picture are our pumpkin plants.
Next he is going to paint the exposed wood and put white lattice in the front. But he did a great job and even exceeded my expectations...as usual.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Swim Lessons

The goal this summer was to get Trouble interested in swimming. When we went to Kyle and Monica's wedding in June we stayed at a hotel with a pool and Trouble had a good time. So we signed him up for lessons on base. Typically they don't let 3 year olds take outdoor lessons because they get cold. I pushed it and they let him in. However, he was freezing!! It could have been 100 degrees out and his teeth would have been chattering. Poor guy. All he really needs is some fat on them bones. And on the third day on lessons I discovered how important the draw string is on little guy swim trunks. Especially little guys with no bum. Anyway, he didn't seem too traumatized by the whole experience so I think we'll have another go this winter in an indoor pool. He had a great teacher who let him hold on to her when he started whining and on the last day of class he got to go down the big slide.

Here is Trouble holding on for warmth...

Here is Trouble kicking around...

Here is Trouble going down the slide. He was able to go down three times with his teacher. When we got home he said that he wished he had a big slide in his house to go down.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Who are you?

Winning Reader!

Every summer the library does a summer reading program. For 8 weeks the kids have to read 4 hours a week. For every 30 minutes of reading the kids get to enter in for a weekly drawing and some final prizes at the end-of-summer reading program at the zoo. We read every day and Trouble even finished two chapter books: The Tale of Desperaux and Because of Winn-Dixie. All the reading paid off! Trouble won a Family Season Pass for 2009 for our zoo and 120 other zoo around the country! We picked up his pass today! Congratulations Trouble!!!

Happy Birthday, Travis!

Yesterday was Travis' birthday. He turned 31! What an old man. I made him cupcakes and chocolate no bakes to take to work. When he got home we had dinner. In his family the tradition is that Mom makes the birthday person their favorite meal. I made him orange chicken (like from Panda Express), pork chow mien, and fried rice. Then he came to mutual with me. We had a father-daughter activity. We did a nerd night. So he was a nerd for his birthday. He was the 'Dad' for one of the Young Women whose Dad is deployed. When we got home he opened presents and blew out his candles. The kiddos helped!

The kids made Travis a stepping stone for the garden.

Travis is an awesome Dad and Husband. He is very supportive of everything I do. Like, he changed his work schedule to come to mutual on Wednesday. It's things like that shows me how much he loves me. He always helps me with the things I'm involved in. What usually happens is that I take on more than I can chew and he is there to help me.
What are his other jobs?

Doctor: He's the one to fix our broken kids. Like take out splinter or de-puss an infection and trim nails. When I don't feel well, he takes over and sends me to bed.
Extra Maid: When the dishes have been sitting or a pile of laundry needs to be folded, he'll jump right in.
Teacher: Every moment is a teaching moment for him.
Clown: Always full of surprises!
Putter Extraordinaire: He loves to putter and likes to keep himself busy. Recently he's taken on a new side kick, Trouble!! Trouble likes to fetch tools and help Daddy.
Consultant: Always helping me with my projects. Like approving or giving suggestions for my homemade cards, scrapbook pages, craft projects, and other things.
Project Manager: He is the brains of our little operation around here. He has better logic. He manages all our projects. I can put together a trip or do finances, but he gives the ultimate approval. He gives the suggestions and together we put things into action.
Idea Activist: He wants to try everything, and puts it into action! I love that about him. He says, "I want to build a garage." and he does. He say, "I want to travel around the world" and he does. He has goals and he accomplishes them. I know with him we'll always be taken care of.

I know there is so much more. But he is truly wonderful!! I love him so much! The kids are lucky to have a father that wants to spent time with them and teach them and loves them so much. I couldn't image spending my life with anyone else. Okay, enough mushy stuff! Happy Birthday, Travis!!

Saturday, August 9, 2008

The Zoo

Today we went to the zoo. Travis had to bail about an hour in because he got called into work. Trouble was looking forward to going for the last few days. However, just over an hour into it he decided that there just wasn't enough animals and that it was time to go home. Granted, it is a small zoo that have probably had the same animals for centuries and the habitats aren't exactly ideal BUT it is close, cheap, easy to see in less than two hours, you can feed and pet some of the animals, they are up close, and it isn't crowded. Dynomite was very excited. I doubt she really remembers any previous zoo trips.

This is my favorite part of our Zoo here. Being able to feed these little deer.

Of course we had to see the lemurs:

This is what Dynomite had to say:

And the bears...begging for food:

Trouble liked the reptiles:
I couldn't resist these little turtles. They were struggling so much to eat the lettuce and cut up carrots. They were really cute!
Monkeys, Dynomite size:

The wildest and most amusing animals of all: Kid Monkeys

Oh yes, the highlight of our zoo experience:

The kids were more excited about the baby ducks more than anything else. Glad we paid for that!!

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Relief in Public Places

This is one blog I do not have pictures of....I think you'll understand and appreciate it.

The other day after dinner we went for a family outing to the library. About 15 minutes into our visit Trouble approached me to inform me that he needed a drink of water. He was holding his hand over his mouth, in which he proceeded to throw up into. He threw up all over himself, me, the book he was holding, the DVD I was holding, the carpet, and the Arthur section of the library. Then he continued throwing up all the way to the bathroom. When we actually got to the bathroom, he was done...of course. Thank goodness Travis was in the library. I called him on his cell. He quickly found Dynomite (oh yeah, we have another child running a muck in the library) and found me. He went out to get Trouble the spare set of clothes I happened to have in the van and then he helped clean up in the library, while I cleaned the bathroom. After that Trouble was fine and showed no other signs of sickness. I guess the 'reading bug' really got to him. Ha Ha!

However, I innocently assumed my troubles were over but NO. Today in Barnes and Noble Dynomite pooped out her diaper. I mean EVERYWHERE! Thank goodness not on anything we had to buy! (At least in the library they just decontaminate and put things back on the shelf). She got a nice bath in the bathroom sink and the stroller got a quick wash down. Now I have to clean the stroller, again. Again because I just got done cleaning it for the new baby. Maybe the kiddos are allergic to books?

So all I need now is for my water to break at Wal-mart!!!

I would love to hear all your embarrassing messy public kid stories, it would make me feel better!

Tuesday, August 5, 2008


Do you know how an Etch-a-Sketch works? I didn't know until Travis and Trouble broke one. (Which Travis, of course, turned it into a science lesson!) There are these little balls covered in some kind of silver element. When you turn the Etch-a-Sketch upside down and shake it, the silver on the balls rubs off on the screen and gives the screen a silver look. Inside the toy is also a little metal piece that looks like a pencil tip. It is hooked to a bunch of wires, which are hooked to the white knobs. When you turn the white knobs it moves the wire that are hooked to the metal pencil tip, which scraps off the silver. Ingenious!!PS The silver washed right off!

Kelly's Shower and Quilt

Our good friend Kelly is due with her first baby in a few weeks. Kelly is awesome!! The kiddos love her. Her and Pat are always thinking of us. So the very least I could do for her is throw her a baby shower. She has made both my kids quilts and she hand stitched a soccer ball for Trouble and make Dynomite a baby doll, along with bringing us over homemade jams and jellys and having us over for dinner and taking care of me when Travis was on alerts. So I made a quilt for her soon-to-be born little girl. We're so excited for them. We had a good time celebrating. Here is me with my big belly and the food.
Kelly loves animals. She is the one who gave us both of our animals. Freddie the beta fish for Trouble's birthday and Rocky the Chinchilla. So I made her bunny bread and a 3D duck cake.
Travis helped with the games. He always gets roped into whatever I'm doing :-) We had a good time. Okay Kelly, you can have your baby now!!
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