Saturday, May 21, 2016

33 Weeks: (another) Bumpdate

This past week was a rough one for the books. The kids have been sick and I've been sick. I'm not entirely sure what is going on with me because I haven't had a chance to go to the doctor until today and, go figure, offices aren't open on Saturday or they don't open until ten. So, here I sit, hoping that I'm on the mend. I do feel a little better today. I wonder if that's because my in-laws took all the kids for us last night and I went straight to bed by 8:30. It was amazing to get to sleep and not have to wake up and take care of three small children. SUCH an enormous blessing. {THANK YOU!}
33 Weeks Bumpdate
Bed head and clothes. Sorry, I don't really get dressed these days.

Baby is the size of a: honeydew

Cravings: Nothing really. Anything I can swallow without wincing in pain because of my sore throat. 
Stretch Marks: Well, yeah but nothing new.
Exercise: It was going well until I caught whatever it is that I caught. I haven't been able to go to the gym much because one of the kids always seems to be sick, but this past week I haven't wanted to move from the couch. I even took my fitbit off and am sporting a wrist watch tan line now instead of watching how few steps I have made each day. I've been miserable, y'all.
New Things: I find it strange that my braxton hicks contractions have stopped. For months now, I've had them quite a bit but over the last few weeks I haven't had any. Other new things worth mentioning are:
1. I started painting/restoring a piece of furniture for her room. I should probably be working on that right now instead of blogging.
2. Tomorrow my mom and sister are throwing me a shower.
What's going on with her? She is gaining half a pound a week and might grow up to a whole inch this week! Her bones are fully developed and she's now working on making them harder and more stable. Now, her goal is to start packing on the fat.
What I miss: feeling good, clothes that fit
What I'm looking forward to: holding her and soaking her in knowing this is my last baby and getting back to working out and feeling comfortable in my skin again

I hope each of you enjoy your weekend!

Friday, May 13, 2016

The Winter People

One of my great loves is reading. It's a hobby that has been put aside in the throes of raising babies and when I do read, it's usually desperate studying of scriptures or scholarly reading of nonfiction. It's rare that I pick up a book of fiction and actually finish it. When I grabbed The Winter People by Jennifer McMahon, I believed it to be no different. Actually, I started it months ago and put it down a few chapters in because I wanted to read a book that would help me understand Abel's latest diagnosis a little better. It's not that I prefer nonfiction. It's more of a time/benefit analysis. One day, my husband came home from work and I put on my running shoes and practically sprinted to the local walmart for a reprieve. I just wanted a breath of air, of sanity to cling to. I know, I know. Walmart a reprieve does not make, but I was desperate and I live in a small town with few options. Before long, I found myself surrounded by the crisp smell of new books and many alluring titles. Intriguing covers were beckoning to me to open them and I soon found myself in my happy place--reading summary after summary, imagining I was one of those moms who still had time to read. I finally settled on this story, a dark one set in the woods of old Vermont, a place I could easily envision because I visited there a few years ago (Vermont trip Part 1, 2, and 3). 

In my advanced age (ha), I've become much more of a wimp. As a child, I loved scary movies, daring roller coasters, and ghost stories. Now, I think my boys will be lucky if I ever let them step foot in the line for one of those anything-could-go-wrong-man-made-and-not-to-be-trusted-with-my-precious-kids roller coasters. And ghostly mentionings and horror movies? Not so much my thing these days. I legitimately feel uneasy when watching them unfold on screen and this book was no different. Jordan was traveling a lot of the time I was reading this and there were a few nights that I put the book down and turned on a funny tv show instead to take my thoughts away from the story that unfolded in the book.
It was good, though. It tells the tale of Sara Harrison Shea and the tragic happenings that occurred back in her day in the early 1900's. She suffered through the loss of her daughter and while doing so she kept a journal that would survive her and provide a useful tool in uncovering secrets and old legends to a family living in her old house in present day. Ruthie, the nineteen year old daughter of the owner of the farmhouse, finds a copy of the diary and is sucked into Sara's story. What she finds is that she isn't the only person interested in uncovering what happened to Sara Harrison Shea all those years before.

"McMahon has developed a subgenre of psychological creepily seductive settings." 

I love some psychological suspense! When paired with creepy "sleepers", it makes for a perfect book to conclude on Friday the 13th! What I also found is that if I quit reading the mindless articles I read on social media, I have lots more time for fiction in my life. Here's to reading and writing more!

Next up:

Monday, May 9, 2016

Thoughts on this pregnancy, my recent 5K, and Mother's Day

I have written so many blog posts in my head lately, but have not carved out time to actually sit down and write something out. Now that I have a few minutes, my mind is not settling on one particular topic so I guess I'll chat about life lately. I'm thirty one weeks pregnant this week. I feel pretty good. A couple weeks ago, I got sick and ended up in the hospital but I'm leaps and bounds better now than I was then. I feel as if time is winding down now and she'll be in my arms before I know it. Honestly, I have no idea how one person will go out in town and run errands with that many small children, but I also know that people figure it out and I will, too. I find myself already thinking about the mechanics of taking the kids to school next year. Portions of the parking lot at one of the schools is gravel so the easy strollers are out of the question. Am I going to have to baby wear a newborn in the front and a two year old in the back so I can walk the other two into their separate schools? Sounds like a blast. I already get the wildest looks going in now. Some folks comment that my hands are full or my mornings are busy in a friendly manner. Others stare at me like I'm the worst parent in the world when one of them falls and I tell them to walk it off....or when I end up dragging one in kicking and screaming. I'm getting to the point where it doesn't bother me anymore, though. I just remind myself that they probably have no idea. 
I've been trying to stay active during this pregnancy. My diet has not been all green and leafy, though. My sweet tooth is in full force so sometimes I up my workouts to accomodate. Knock on wood* The back pain has been a lot better lately. On Saturday, I ran (ahem jogged very slowly) a 5K. I did better than I thought I would, but as I was racing I thought I was doing a lot better time wise than I actually was. That's okay. I didn't pee on myself nor did I pass out so I'll take it! By the end of the thing, I sat there with my family, recovering and listening to the awards being handed out when I heard "...running for two...Third place goes to Kacy..." What? Totally unexpected. Score. I'm just hoping there were more than three people in my age group. :P

That's my mom. She ran in the race, too and she has been killin' it in the gym. I'm so proud of her and it makes me anxious for postpartum days and being able to see the numbers go down on the scale again. 
Mother's Day was a good one. We usually get out of town to celebrate, but we stayed home this year. I guess I shouldn't say we stayed home, though because we were gone all day. We got up and went to church and then started making the rounds so we could see all the special women in our lives. We didn't end up getting home until around ten o'clock.
Left: 9 months out for baby #3, Right: 9 weeks left for baby #4
But any Mother's Day that I'm with my boys is good for me! I hope you had a good one, too. I know it can be an impossibly hard day for some people. Those who have infertility problems and those who never had a motherly figure in their lives, and those who have mourned their mother's death-- you all were on my mind. Just clicking through the archives of this blog and seeing the picture progressions from year to year remind me that time is fleeting. I spent the day cherishing the women I do have in my life that have shown me the ropes of being a woman, wife, and mother. I'm so so thankful for each one of them.

Monday, April 11, 2016

What's New?

Top of the Monday mornin' to ya, friends! I hope your day is starting off as fabulous as mine (or better). I mean, I didn't wake up at the beach so there's room for improvement. Still, it has been a good morning. Jordan was around so I didn't have to wake up Merit to take the other two boys to school, meaning that I also didn't have to throw my back out of line as I hobbled across two parking lots with a baby on my hip and two other little goons tugging on my other hand. Isn't it amazing how not having just one of your kids with you makes everything seem so much easier? I bet once Saylor arrives, I'll be feeling like three out in town is a breeze. Because Merit slept in (10am!!), I got a lot done.
Dishes are clean, laundry has been started, and I'm about 4,000 steps into my day. In addition, I've been plugging away on the nursery.
Last week, I bravely moved my two oldest into a room together and that has been...well...going. Anyway, I was determined to have a little room for our newest addition coming soon. Kinley had a room set up about a week before he arrived due to a move shortly before my due date. My other kids didn't have rooms until they were closer to one. It's not a big deal, but since this is my last babe I figure there's some room to spoil her (and me!). I just think a girl needs some room for her clothes! :) I don't have money to make this room the Pinterest perfect place, but I do have some mediocre skills that will improve the look of Abel's bland, tiny old room. When Jordan left on business, I set to work. In a week, I have moved out furniture, moved more in, set the crib up, and painted. Additionally, my dear husband humored me this weekend when he got back and hung some crown molding for me. I'm getting excited to finish cosmetic issues and start decorating. I'll show you more later.
We survived the first week of J being gone. We had some rough moments, but they were made better by friends and family who stopped by to provide a smidge of sanity for me. My in-laws brought over dinner for the boys and girl scout cookies for me and told me to leave and go to the grocery store alone! It was so nice to have an hour. The week went well. Abe had his first appointment with his occupational therapist. By the end of the week, I had noted that he said two new phrases: "It worked!" and "Do it again!"Merit is growing and changing so much, too. This past week he learned to climb up to the top of their outdoor play set by himself and slide down. Big boys.
I'm 27 weeks now. 
Baby is the size of a: cucumber or lantern
Weight: 140
Cravings: Nothing to write home about
Stretch Marks: I think I see a new one every six minutes. Kidding, but yeah...I'm trying to keep them under control. 
Exercise: I haven't been to the gym in weeks. My back pain is awful. I finally broke down and bought a pregnancy belt yesterday. It does seem to help, but the pain is still there and knocks me off my feet at times. I'm a little worried because I have a 5K coming up and it really hurts to run.
New Things: Does a feeling count? I just feel so much more pregnant than I actually am and it gives me this uneasy feeling that she might be early. Watch her come at 43 weeks now that I said that! :/ Anyway, I think that's why I've been wanting to get things in order. Nesting in full effect. I also got her car seat yesterday!
What's going on with her? She's about two pounds and if she's hearing, she probably is starting to recognize Mama's voice.
What I miss: sushi, running, climbing stairs without breathing know, the good life.
What I'm looking forward to: Never being pregnant again.

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Workin' 5-9

Tumble outta bed
And I stumble to the kitchen
Pour myself a cup of ambition
And yawn and stretch
And try to come to life

Jump in the shower Skip the shower
And the blood starts pumpin' because I've got a bunch of kids
Out on the street In this house
The traffic starts jumpin' They're already jumpin'
The folks like me on the job from 9 to 5 Moms like me on the job from 5 to 9

Workin' 9 to 5, 5-9
What a way to make a livin'
Barely gettin' by
It's all takin' and no givin'

They just use your mind

And they never give you credit
It's enough to drive you crazy
If you let it

9 to 5, for service and devotion 5-9 for service and devotion
You would think that I
Would deserve a fat promotion

Want to move ahead

But the boss won't seem to let me

I swear sometimes that man is out to get me I swear that kid is out to get me

They let you dream
Just to watch 'em shatter
You're just a step
On the boss-man's ladder
But you got dreams
He'll never take away

You're in the same boat
With a lotta your friends

Waitin' for the day your ship'll come in

'N' the tide's gonna turn
And it's all gonna roll your way

Workin' 9 to 5 5-9
What a way to make a livin'
Barely gettin' by

It's all takin' and no givin'
They just use your mind
And you never get the credit
It's enough to drive you crazy
If you let it
9 to 5, yeah 5-9 yeah
They got you where they want you
There's a better life
And you think about it, don't you

*It's a rich man's game
No matter what they call it
And you spend your life
Puttin' money in his wallet

9 to 5, whoa 5-9 whoa
What a way to make a livin'
Barely gettin' by
It's all takin' and no givin'
They just use your mind
And they never give you credit
It's enough to drive you crazy
If you let it

9 to 5, yeah 5-9 yeah
They got you where they want you
There's a better life
And you dream about it, don't you

*It's a rich man's game
No matter what they call it

(*Open for revision)
Collaboration by Dolly and Kace

Just another day in the life, y'all. How is your Thursday?
(Please note: I'm kidding. A little.)
(Also: It's actually more like 24 hours with no vacation, days off, or sick days rather than 5am-9pm, but who's counting?)

Saturday, April 2, 2016

the one where I get testy about stay-at-home moms and their time

Happy Saturday morning to ya. I sat down at the computer with shooting pain going up into my back because I've seen every single Alvin and the Chipmunks episode there's to see and instead of trying to relax on the couch with a squirmy three year old--the one that's always awake--I'm here. Guzzling coffee and ignoring the pain in my back as best I can. April is going to be a difficult month here. I'll be solo parenting for most of it. Earlier this week there was a light that made me hopeful. I met and interviewed a potential babysitter. I hate relying on other people, especially with something so precious! When I posted the job on I even wrote to "please not apply if you aren't interested in becoming a part of their lives". I think that's pretty clear, straight-forward- don't you? Well, after speaking with this girl and doing some background checks, I reluctantly hired her. I always feel this way after asking someone new to watch the kids. I thought it would be easier when we moved home because I thought everyone around here would know the person or know someone who does and have some extra info to set my mind at ease. The trouble is, I need sitters during the day for the other two while I run Abel to therapy and everything else under the sun. Everyone already has a job or school at the times when I need someone. So, I hired her because she appeared to be bending over backward for me, rearranging her work schedule so she could definitely be available three days a week. She even said, "I think in life it's most important to connect with people. I'm here to help mothers out. I want a large family and I hope someone will do the same for me when the time comes." Alright, gal. Let's see what you've got. She even came with a calendar and wanted me to schedule times with her in advance. When I came home, the kids were happy and fed and the house was cleaner than I left it. Score! I talked to her about the extra therapy that Abe might be starting and she said she had a job interview in Knoxville (making that her 3rd job!) at that time, but that she would be happy to reschedule to accommodate me. Within five minutes of leaving, she had supposedly called and rescheduled the job interview. "See you Tuesday!" she happily texted. Then yesterday she texted me telling me she got a job in a different state and could no longer work for me. Sayonara. 
I guess I'm bothered by it mostly because my time is important, too. In the four years that I've been a stay-at-home mom, I've noticed a recurring theme that many people demonstrate to me over and over. My time is not as important as theirs. When we lived in Louisiana, my neighbor put my name down on her kids' school contact list (without asking me) and would have me running all kinds of crazy errands for her. Her house was one of those you'd see on Hoarders, no joke. One day, she asked me to break in which consisted of pushing the door open until the trash can fell over ("don't worry, just leave it") and entering to rummage through her kitchen to find her son's medicine and take it to him at school. SURE BECAUSE MY TIME ISN'T IMPORTANT. Another time, she wanted me to take her daughter some new clothes to school so obviously I thought that was pretty important so I rushed over there expecting to find a young girl who started her period unexpectedly or got in trouble for wearing shorts too short, or something else big. Nope. She just changed her mind about what she wanted to wear that day. You think I'm joking, but this sort of thing happens all the time to stay-at-home moms. Ask so and so, she doesn't have a job! So when I lovingly crafted a job posting online, set up a time to interview, and hired someone indefinitely, I expected that to be it. Now it just feels like a huge waste of time. You know what I could have been doing during that time? Finally showering after days. Stuffing my face with chocolate ice cream. Working on the laundry. Cleaning the kitchen. Enjoying a double nap time that is just so rare. Calling the insurance company to figure out the hospital bills past and upcoming. Calling the company that we order Abel's bionic ear from because the cord and headpiece broke for the millionth time. Just because I'm not paid for what I do every day, doesn't mean the schedule we've created here isn't important to the functioning of this house. It doesn't mean that it's not important to me! Time is super precious to a stay-at-home mom. I'm going to have very little of it this month and that's what is on my mind when you tell me I've wasted my time by hiring you. God has called me to be here with four children that aren't yet in kindergarten. I'm to be pouring myself into them, guiding them into a budding relationship with Him. My role is to create a happy home here that demonstrates God's love. It's important. ..and hard....and time consuming. As a society, can we stop telling mothers it isn't? I'm a servant to Him by serving them and finding caregivers that reflect the importance of that. 
So what did I say to her? " Congrats on the new job!" Obviously, it wasn't meant to be. Then I resisted the urge to also say April Fools at the end of the text. ;) 

"Unless the Lord builds the house, the builders labor in vain." -Psalm 127:1

Monday, March 28, 2016

Easter Everyday

I make a big deal of Halloween and Christmas, but truth be told- I love Easter even more. It's the one day set aside to celebrate a risen Savior. Of course, I do my best to acknowledge that in my day to day life, but the rest of the nation joins us on this day. A risen Savior. It's incredible. We can relive a miracle through the scriptures, through the sermons, through our lives. Jesus, the author and FINISHER of my faith, endured an agonizing death on a cross for me and you. Why would a blameless man do that other than great, great love? It's that realization that faces me each morning and keeps me going. No matter what happens in my life, I'm loved by an Almighty God. One who loves me so much he sent his Son to die for me. These songs are my favorites this time of year. They echo so many of my thoughts. Amazing love. How can it be?

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