Thursday, June 22, 2017

Summer!

It's been really hot this past week. It's definitely summer now!

For our date last Thursday, we saw Wonder Woman. It was pretty good.

Saturday, we went to Paddle Fest at Red Fleet state park. It was a lot of fun (and free!) to paddle the canoe to the dinosaur tracks. We loved it. Even Lewis did okay. We ate lunch out, took naps, and then went to a wedding reception for one of James's former students. All in all, it was a perfect day with the family.

Monday, not so much. We went to Steinaker and the kids all went with James in our new kayak. I sat with Lewis and chilled, but it was super hot and buggy, so I got kind of grumpy from doing that. The kids had a blast, though.

Tuesday and Wednesday afternoons, we just relaxed once James got home from work.

I've finally been sleeping better thanks to a little more vitamin D. All I had to do was start working in the yard for 30 minutes each morning. I've enlisted the kids' help to try to teach them the value of hard work. The grass is doing better than ever before, but it isn't perfect. We are really struggling with keeping up with the weeds, though.

We went to the library activity this morning and had a great time. I love that the library does these every week almost all summer. They usually have 4-5 activities and free snowcones at the end. No one ever complains about that!

I feel like a genius: I finally figured out how to get pictures from James's phone. There were some gems in there that I need to add to Facebook.

No date today because there is a RS meeting about keeping kids busy in the summer without electronics. I hope Lewis is an angel because I plan on taking him.

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Phenixes Pt. 2

We had a great time at the fair on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday doing the normal things: candy drop, little red barn, exhibits, and book pond. I found time to work on my talk for Sunday. I think it went pretty well. At least that's what people told me. Maybe I'll be off the hook for longer than 11 months this time.

We went to dinner at the Chinese buffet Saturday night. Myles had arrived late Friday night because he was going to help Dad on the car. They decided not to because they were afraid of not finishing and leaving us with only the Corolla, which does not fit our family. They got to go to the classic car show, and James and Myles also got to go shooting since they weren't busy on the car. James will take it in today to the mechanic and we'll get it back tomorrow.

Sunday was a nice day of rest. Everyone left on Monday afternoon after Dad and Myles installed some ceiling fans both in the dining room and my room. It's so nice to have them!

The past few days I've been a little tired. The sunlight wakes me up early. Lewis has been a little extra grumpy because he's teething. So far one tooth has popped through. I think another is coming. It was completely unexpected because he's only 4 months old and my other kids were 6 months old. Oh well. It has to happen sometime. I just don't like being bitten!

Thursday, June 8, 2017

And More Phenixes Visit

Last Friday, James took the day off work because he had a leg infection. It really stunk because he couldn't go to the family reunion. I talked him out of it so his leg would get enough rest. He's doing a lot better now after a round of antibiotics. I was still getting over a cold, so I had a yucky cough that made me not sleep well. For a weekend, it was kind of a bummer. We did a few yard sales, but that was pretty much it.

Monday, I touched up all the paint in the house, mixed the colors together, and used that color (a beautiful sea-green) to paint the pirate ship with the kids. They had so much fun but got paint everywhere. I'm still getting it out of my hair.

Tuesday, the parents and Nash came over. We had a little dinner and hung out till late (until James got home from fogging). Nash really wanted to talk to me by myself. It was actually kind of funny.

Wednesday, Mom and Dad took Nash to the MTC in Provo. I worked all day on sewing some skirts for Katie and making a few pairs of pants into shorts along with my normal routine. Mom and Dad got back around dinner. We hung out after that just talking. James helped some neighbors move so we now have another couch. It will take some rearranging to find the best setup.

Today I've been working on my talk for Sunday. I'm going to scrap some old jeans and hang out till dinner. Then, to the fair!

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Phenixes Visit

We went on a date last Thursday: a progressive dinner that started at Taco Bell for appetizers, then to KFC for sides, Subway for the main course, and Coldstone for dessert. James and I were both asleep when the guests arrived Thursday night. I'm glad we decided to do so because they didn't arrive until 2 a.m.

James and Joseph had their last day of school on Friday. I put my family to work on prepping to plant the garden. They pulled weeds (well, hoed them mostly), added more dirt to the boxes, and put down mulch. We took turns holding Lewis so he'd be happy. I fertilized the grass and garden and swept of all the walkways.

In the afternoon, everyone went rabbit hunting while I made dinner. Mara had requested pound cake and Parmesan chicken, so that's what I made. We even put 22 candles on the cake and sang to her. I gave her a chocolate bar and some almond butter. We hung out for a while after dinner and then everyone left again for more bunny hunting.

Saturday morning, we took a bunch of milk jugs and the old dishwasher to shoot. I went this time. It was pretty fun to put a bunch of holes into the appliance that's given us so much grief. After lunch, we split up and saw both the dinosaur bones while the others went hunting yet again. We had dinner and then watched a movie once the kids were in bed. I started falling asleep so I didn't come close to finishing it.

Sunday was like normal, but with Joseph's birthday celebration a few days early. He wanted a cake with coconut, so I made a German chocolate cake and the Hawaiian haystacks he'd requested. He finally got the fidget spinner he'd been wanting too. It's a lot easier to put in 7 candles instead of 22. We talked to both families like always.

Monday, I was feeling the effects of a sinus infection that had started Saturday night and gotten worse. I stayed home to clean and put things back together while everyone went to Moonshine Arch. After lunch we just hung out. Mara's boyfriend, Ricky, made dinner for us. Everyone had to leave right after dinner. It was a really great weekend, but it certainly wore me out.

This week has been routine. James works mosquito abatement full-time with hours that are very similar to school. He leaved around 7:10 and returns at 4 or 4:30. When there is fogging to do, that happens from 8-midnight.

I'm adjusting to having extra kids around. I don't mean Joseph; I mean all the extras who come over. They can be pretty annoying at times because they knock on the door a lot. I don't let friends come in because there is nowhere to contain then and I want to feed Lewis without distractions. I know I'll get used to it. It just seems like someone needs something every 30 seconds. I've been extra tired because of this cold, but I'm getting better. I have no hope of getting a nap if I need one, so I've just had to push on through the day. Oh well.


Thursday, May 25, 2017

Magical Unicorn

 Why is my life so busy? I suppose some of it is self-inflicted. James and I worked on getting our garden ready on Saturday. Like all projects, we realized there about three extra steps still need to be done before we can actually plant anything. None of those have happened yet because of James working two jobs and me trying to finish up a big project. I can only focus on one thing at a time without feeling like I'm going insane, so I chose to finish scanning all of our old letters we wrote each other while James was on his mission. It felt really great to finish that and get rid of a bunch of all mildewy papers.

Tuesday was actually pretty relaxing. I finished getting my temple recommend renewed.

I didn't see James at all on Wednesday because he went to Lagoon on a school trip. He didn't return until after midnight.  While he was gone, I babysat the kids from next-door for a few hours. They were pretty good, but it does make the house a little extra hectic.

Today, Thursday, was not so great. Hopefully it will get better from here on out. Our car wouldn't start this morning, so James was late to work from jumpstarting it. I had two places tell me that the battery was OK and that the alternator was also OK. However, I don't believe that the battery is OK. I did not get a new one because I had left Walmart to go somewhere else to get the alternator tested. I then went to Joseph's class to take the treats. It turns out there was no reason to do so. They did not stop class to eat the treats like they did in Kindergarten. All I accomplished really was to say hi in the middle of their reading time. It was a lot of extra stress just to deliver some Ding Dongs. Next time maybe I will send them in his backpack or something.

My piano lesson rescheduled for 1 o'clock today, and about halfway through, Lewis pooped all over me and I had to go change him and wipe poop off of my foot. Better my foot then the carpet, I guess. I also forgot a few things at Walmart. James and I are supposed to go on a date today, but he has to work mosquito abatement again since he was not available yesterday.

Lewis has started gumming me very hard while he's eating and that does not feel good. It does not make me look forward to when he has teeth. Days like this, I wish I could go back to childhood and curl up in my bed and go to sleep. I do look forward to the date later, even though James will be late to it and I think the first part of it I'll be at Walmart getting a new battery for the car. It wouldn't be such a big deal, but we only have one car that fits all of our children and us together. Big family problems, I guess.

Five people are coming to visit tonight: Myles, Mara, Carmel, Kyle, and Ricky. I have the rooms ready, but the rest of the house is a huge mess. If I can get Lewis to go to sleep for longer than 30 minutes, maybe I will be able to semi get things done.  It should be a fun weekend.

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Heads and Cousins Visit

Last Thursday, the Heads came into town for work and a visit. We went to dinner at Tacos El Gordo and then got dessert at Wendy's. Then, we swam in the pool at the hotel. I just hung out and made sure Lewis was happy. It was pretty late when we got home, but I think the kids had a lot of fun.

Friday was pretty normal. My cousin Peder, his wife Lora, and another couple came to visit. We had a great time eating dinner and hanging out. We all went to bed early because they had to be up early for the race.

I saw the end of the race (the Dino Half Marathon). Everyone was super tired, but not very hungry. (I guess that makes sense, but not being a runner, I never would have thought of not being hungry after 13 miles. In fact, unless I am deathly ill, I never lose my appetite!) After the Heads had lunch, they returned home. Everyone else rested and then left around 3. We didn't do anything the rest of the day, really, except finish our rearranging project. James bought a rug for the new dining room, which is sort of a corner of the living room. (It was made to be a dining room; we've just never used it as such. It's bigger than the area in the kitchen, so we can fit a bigger table when we find one. We are outgrowing our current table that only fits 6 - and not too comfortably.) For Mother's Day, we watched a movie and had junk food.

I had a really great Sunday. James made me breakfast burritos and didn't have meetings in the morning. We had to be to church a little early. I got a new calling as assistant librarian. I never saw that coming, but I think it will be nice and relaxing. The first thing I did was download Chrome. I haven't used Internet Explorer in over 10 years.

This week has been busy. We returned the dishwasher we'd bought (a used one) and got a new one. James spent Tuesday night installing it and... it works! I am overjoyed to have a dishwasher again. The whole house is a lot cleaner when the dishes don't take an hour out of my day. I'm still working hard on digitizing my old journals and letters. I hope to do some paint touch up, but I'm going to wait till I'm done with the digitizing. One big project at a time. With the leftover paint, we will probably paint the pirate ship. Since we have the primary colors, it could be almost any color...or more than one!

As for today, it will be a long one. I won't see James at all until almost 10 tonight. I really can't complain, though. If he gets all the required hours, he gets a bonus at the end of the season. So far, so good, and there's a new Anne of Green Gables series to watch on Netflix.

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Overplanned

Our last Saturday was overplanned. It started with grocery shopping, then yard sales, then prepping for dinner, then going over to a friend's house to eat dinner. It wasn't terrible, but we didn't get some things done that we needed to, like install the new dishwasher or mow the lawn. I ended up feeling really stressed for a lot of the day. I don't totally hate busy days, but when Saturday is really busy, it just feels wrong.

I've still been working on my digitizing project. I've loved reading the letters from James's mission and my old journals. When I look at myself from middle school, I realize that I was actually a really good kid and my life was a lot like it is now. I wish I didn't start caring so much about my appearance. That started in the 8th grade.

Lewis can roll both ways now. He is the earliest to do that. He's been waking up at night once because of this milestone. I don't mind too much. I got really spoiled there for a month when he slept all night. I'm not complaining about the earlier bedtime, though. He is also starting to laugh. I love it!

With mosquito abatement Monday and Wednesday and trying (unsuccessfully) to install the new dishwasher on Tuesday, we've had a busy and not super fun week so far. That will change today and tomorrow because we have family coming to visit! Hurray!

We had our last day ever of preschool yesterday. It was bittersweet. Preschool didn't turn out like I'd hoped. I wanted it to be a social thing for the moms as well, but that never happened. There aren't enough kids to do it next year, but I don't mind. Kenny will be in school, and I'm sure Katie will get plenty of princess videos when she's home with Lewis and me.

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Beautiful

We went to a few yard sales last Saturday and got a few random things.

It's been a perfect week weather-wise. I love the low to mid-70's, partly cloudy, slightly breezy. We went to the park yesterday with the kids and had a great time.

I unexpectedly got back money from the hospital since we overpaid, so we bought a new dishwasher! It was originally 400 dollars but marked down to 260 because of having been repaired, so James asked for 225 instead and they were okay with that at Lowe's. I can't wait till we can install it! I'm guessing tomorrow.

I've been working on digitizing old letters that James and I wrote to each other while he was on his mission. I'm also working on my old journals. They are actually pretty funny to read. I started writing in 1999 when I was 11 years old.

Things are so busy, but mundane, so there really isn't anything else to report for the week. Life is good. We're going on a date to dinner tonight. It's nice to have a reliable babysitter.

Thursday, April 27, 2017

2 Jobs

James started mosquito abatement again and worked Monday and Wednesday this week. Last Saturday, he was gone all day at a conference in Salt Lake. We really miss him when he's gone those extra hours, but school is winding down so it won't last forever.

Lewis is still such an awesome baby! He has his days where he needs more attention, but he's slept for 11 hours straight the last few nights...going to bed at 7:30 and waking up at 6:30. I am so lucky!

I finished digitizing all of our scrapbook stuff like letters, certificates, and kids' artwork, as well as a few old photos. Instead of taking up 2 1/2 shelves, our memorabilia now takes up 2/3 of one shelf. My next project (probably far in the future, but I don't know) will be to digitize all our old journals and the letters we wrote while James was on his mission as well as the other letters James received on his mission. I'd also like to make a photo book of our wedding and James's life before we got married, but I'll need more photos first. He also has a giant mission scrapbook that would make a much smaller photo book. For right now, I'm learning more about using Google Photos. The only thing I don't like so far is that I'll have to correct the dates on all the photos I've scanned in since it put the date I scanned them (most in 2014) and not the folder I uploaded them from (which usually has the correct year). It's going to take some time, but I really love having everything in digital format.

We found a small exercise bike at D.I. and having been using it while watching TV. I'm starting to lose weight already just from eating healthy (but not going hungry) the past week. My goal is 10 lbs., only 8.5 to go to get to my normal, healthy "nursing weight".

I guess that's about it for this week. What can I say, I have a pretty boring life sometimes.

Friday, April 21, 2017

Spring Break

We left last Friday for Rexburg. All in all, we had an uneventful drive. We had to stop 3x to feed Lewis, get gas, etc. He barely cried. We had dinner with the Lee grandparents.

The kids did a big egg hunt Saturday in the yard. Then we went up to Victor for the the rest of the day. It was really fun. It's always great to see the Head grandparents. The kids got to color eggs.

Sunday after church we had dinner with Myles, Kyle, Mara, Ricky, Carmel, Maddie, and Ricky's brother. It was fun, though I started getting a cold from Kenny and couldn't think clearly.

Monday, I read a book all day since I was still tired. We had FHE with the kids.

Tuesday, I went to book group with Melodie. It was really fun, and we even got homemade eclairs. James and I went on a date for dinner.

Wednesday, we went to to zoo in Idaho Falls and got pupusas for lunch afterward. It was perfect weather, and the pupusas were delicious! I made dinner for my siblings and their extras.

Thursday, we drove home. I managed to unpack everything in time for the Relief Society un-birthday party, which was really fun. There was some really delicious cake.

Today has been crazy with grocery shopping and tons of laundry. The rest of the house is a mess now and James won't even be home tomorrow, which is a bummer. I'll make it, though. I really need to recommit to taking care of myself. I'm getting enough sleep now that I consistently sleep all night (go Lewis!), but I've been eating a lot of junk because I still feel kind of bad about myself. Things will get better. They always do.

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Blessings and Visits and Trips, Oh My!

My siblings came last Friday night to visit. We had lots of fun on Saturday shooting, preparing tons of food for Sunday, and hanging out. Sunday, we blessed Lewis. Along with Myles, Nash, Mara, and Kyle (Myles's roomie), James's mom, brother Joseph, and sister Anna came. Lewis was blessed to be a calming spirit in our home, as well as a peacemaker. Those were very happy words to hear. I already know that about him. His cute little smiles make everyone happy, and he is still the world's easiest baby. Last night, he slept for 10 hours straight!

We had a great dinner Sunday night with the family and one of James's friends. We had chili, cornbread, salad, and chocolate cake. There was the perfect amount for some leftovers, but not too much.

I haven't seen James much this week. He had parent/teacher conferences Monday and mosquito abatement Tues. and Wed. I used the extra time to work on my digitizing project and rake up all the grass in the yard. We've had gorgeous weather, and Lewis even cooperated enough so I could get it all done. The yard looks a lot better now that the thatch is gone and it has started turning green.

Today is packing day. It hasn't been great. Katie's had two tantrums, Lewis has been fussy and taking super short naps, and the two older kids have been fighting a lot. It's driving me crazy. I've finally almost finished now that it's afternoon. They're begging for a snack and whining, but I insisted on at least finishing the blog first. What is it about writing that's so therapeutic?

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Project Time

James and I went on a date last Thursday to see Beauty and the Beast, and I loved it! I totally missed the "gay moment" that was talked about a lot in the news. The media can be so stupid sometimes.

We had a wonderful Conference weekend just relaxing. It was a little too relaxing because I fell asleep both afternoons. Good thing I can reread everything online.

Lewis went to the doctor on Monday. He is taller and skinnier than he was at 2 weeks. No surprise there. I'm glad to have such a happy, healthy boy.

Sometimes I feel like I go from being bored to having way too much to do. Today is one of those days. I'm working on a project to digitize a lot of old scrapbooks and papers. They are taking up too much space! I made myself a list so I won't feel so overwhelmed. I'm hoping it will take me at least a month, maybe more, or at least until I plant a garden.

Kenny is 5! We signed him up for Kindergarten yesterday after preschool. He asked for lava cake and breakfast burritos for dinner. His favorite present so far is the marble run.  He's been playing with it all day.

Thursday, March 30, 2017

My Birthday

Friday, we went to the library and picked up a few things at the store while I took Joseph out for his Book It pizza. We then went home and watched Trolls for family movie night. It wasn't as dumb as I thought it'd be. We had some cake and ice cream too.

Saturday, I had the most amazing birthday! It started off awesome because Lewis slept from 9:45 to 6:45, which meant I got a full 8 hours of sleep. I realized that my mild "blah" feeling comes from not getting quite enough sleep during the week. I usually get about 7 hours, which is enough for me physically but not enough mentally.

James made me breakfast, a delicious omelet, while I fed Lewis. We went to the Outdoor Expo and looked around. The kids loved it because they got free candy and played in a pirate ship. We also visited D.I. and got a few things for Lewis, like an umbrella stroller and front pack since our previous ones wore out. James made lunch with one of my presents - a new waffle iron. We spent the afternoon relaxing and eating snacks while watching TV. James and I went out to dinner at Vernal Brewing Company. It was absolutely delicious! There actually aren't very many restaurants we haven't been to yet, maybe 10 out of the 40, but they are the expensive ones. Hopefully we will be able to go on dates more often and experience the rest.

Once the kids went to bed, we hung out with Lewis and had some more cake and ice cream. (I was SO stuffed at this point.) Everything about the day was great except perhaps for my overeating to the point of being uncomfortable. It was delicious, though!

Monday, we had FHE with the kids and watched Studio C.

Tuesday, I went to the temple after dinner since it was my turn. I really felt the Spirit. Sometimes I am more sleepy and don't pay attention as well as I should.

Wednesday, James took the kids out for an adventure while I relaxed with Lewis.

I'm struggling with how I look right now. I feel really fat even though I look exactly like I did after my other boys. (After Katie I was 10 lbs. heavier than now, which really showed up in my face.) What I really need to do is stop worrying so much, but it's hard. Though it is possible for me to lose some weight now, it's hard for me to be motivated when I don't get quite enough sleep and wake up feeling grumpy. I know I'll get there. I'm going to ask James to put the scale away where I can't find it and just rely on my tape measure.

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Blah

It's been really hard to wake up since the time change. I wish they'd just do away with it, but I suppose there are more important things for Congress (or whoever's actually in charge of it) to argue over. Oh well.

James's family came to visit this past weekend. It was a lot of fun. We had corned beef and cabbage on Thursday. Friday, I went birthday shopping for some new shoes and other misc. items with Melodie. The kids all went swimming in the afternoon while I spent it with Lewis. Then we went out to dinner at the Chinese place. Melodie and I watched "When Calls the Heart" while the others played games. That can be hard to do while I'm feeding Lewis.

They had to leave Saturday morning. I went to baby shower in the afternoon. After that, we hung out until 8, when two of James's friends came over for games. We played a really interesting game called Mansions of Madness.

Sunday was pretty normal. I went to all of church after James had his morning meetings. We did FHE a day early with Cherissa and Tayson because...

Monday, James worked for 3 hours on our dishwasher. Unfortunately, it's still broken. :( It may be a few months before we can afford a new one, but with this being the 3rd repair in 4 years, I think it's time to replace it. Bummer.

Tuesday, James went to the temple. The kids and I caught up on some reading. Joseph has finished 2 sets of books from school now! I think by a year from now, he'll be reading anything he wants.

Wednesday, I went to a stake RS birthday party that also had pie. It was fun. I even took Lewis, and aside from forgetting the diaper bag (I'm out of practice), it was perfect.

Today has been the most blah day of all. Lewis has been a little grumpy and not napping as long as he normally does. I think it's probably another growth spurt.

I just want to feel normal. I feel about 90% of normal, but there's that 10% that keeps nagging me in the back of my mind that I never do enough, am not a good mom, and will ultimately fail to make a difference in anyone's life. Once I get out of bed and start my day, I usually feel fine. Today has just dragged on more than usual. My birthday is coming in a few days. If that doesn't cheer me up, I don't know what will!

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Week 6

We had a really good week. The weather is absolutely gorgeous, both sunny and warm, and all the snow is gone except for a tiny bit of ice on the cold side of our house. I'm so excited! This time of year, it feels like everyone comes out of hibernation and is really happy.

I had an eye appointment on Friday and ran some errands. We went to the park on Saturday and also bought some fertilizer for our yard. The kids had a great time. They've been playing outside with friends all week. It's so great to be able to send them out. We've all been going crazy from being cooped up all winter. They helped me clean up the yard. We always get lots of trash that blows in during windy days.

For FHE on Monday, we bought and watched Moana. I love that movie! It was a great ending to a stressful day. The dishwasher broke and I thought I already had the right part, but it turns out I didn't and had to order it from ebay. It wasn't expensive, but I'll have to wash by hand until the 21st (or until I get it fixed.) It looks a little complicated. This will be my 3rd time fixing the stupid thing. It's a Bosch and not that old. I think it was maybe a year old when we moved in 4 years ago. Oh well.

James and I started a "temple Tuesday" tradition. It was my turn this week. I enjoyed it, even though I was kind of sleepy.

I had my 6-week postpartum appointment yesterday. It went well. I thought it was in the afternoon but it ended up being the morning, and my neighbor that I would've asked to watch my kids was sick, so I took the younger 3 with me. They were a little crazy (except for Lewis, who slept the whole time), but we made it. I able to get back sooner from shopping in the afternoon.

I've been getting ready for our visitors, the Heads, who arrive this afternoon. I made bread and got things ready for corned beef and cabbage along with my normal, routine housework. All that remains is to sweep and clean outside. I'm excited to introduce Lewis to everyone (except Grandma, who already met him and needs no introduction). He's grown a lot since she saw him last anyway and is now smiling. I'm so glad to have such a happy baby who sleeps so well.

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Week 5

Not a lot has happened this week. Lewis is starting to smile, though it's mostly on accident. It's so cute. His naps are getting somewhat shorter (not 4 hours long anymore), but his sleep at night only continues to get better. He's done 7-8 hours for the first stretch all week. He's also going to bed earlier, around 8:30 some nights. Of course it's still pretty unpredictable, but I can't complain.

Everyone loves Lewis a lot. There are sometimes fights over who gets to hold him or play with him on the floor. We're working on tummy time. I always hate doing it, and so do my babies.

The snow is finally melting! The weather forecast is in the mid to high 50's and sunny all week. I'm so happy. I've had a few mornings where I wake up feeling kind of sad, even though the sun is up, but once I get out of bed and start the day, I feel fine. My reflux is gone now too. I was worried that it was going to stick around. I think eating healthier has helped it a lot. It's also helped me to start losing weight. Hurray! By June I should be back at pre-pregnancy weight or pretty close. Those last few usually won't budge while I'm nursing.

Thursday, March 2, 2017

Week 4

Lewis is 1 month old! How is that even possible? He is such a wonderful baby. The only time  he's really been cranky was for a few days this week when he went through a growth spurt. I had to nurse him constantly when he was awake. Thankfully, he still slept normally at night - only waking up once around 3 a.m.! I get plenty of sleep thanks to him.

Sometimes nursing can be depressing, a little. I'm barely starting to work on my excess weight, so during those growth spurt days, I literally felt like a fat cow. I wouldn't trade it for anything, though. Joseph was sick for a day, and I didn't worry as much because I know Lewis is getting plenty of antibodies. (At least, I wasn't a total germaphobe, but I didn't let Joseph hold or kiss him while he was sick. But they do live in the same house!)

I guess my big outing this week is going grocery shopping and running a few errands. I was going to go to the ward temple night last night, but I had a terrible headache that ibuprofen wouldn't touch. Last night was the first night I didn't wake up sweating, though, so maybe my hormones are almost back to normal! I don't remember ever sweating this much before.

I was feeling a little down one evening, though nothing compared to a few weeks ago. Katie started telling me how Jesus is her friend. It was really cute and brought tears to my eyes.

I guess that about covers it for the week. Time for another feeding!

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Week 3

So much of my life revolves around Lewis, so it's hard not to write from the point of view of a new mom. Once we go out in April, then my blog titles will probably change.

Friday, I had a pretty normal day and hung out with the family (plus James's mom and brother Joseph). It involved lots of laundry. I had to rest a lot because I had a blocked milk duct that really hurt so I didn't get much sleep, but I was able to resolve it quickly with lots of feedings.

Saturday, Melodie and I went shopping with the $50 someone gave me as a gift. I got a nightgown, fruit bowl, chocolate bar, earrings, and pants. Random, I know, but the best shopping trips are ones where you have plenty of money but aren't looking for anything specific. James and I went on a date during the afternoon. We picked out silly things at D.I. and found some mud to drive the car through. We also got a treat at Wendy's. Once the kids were in bed (except Lewis), we played a board game. I enjoyed it a lot more than I thought I would. Usually strategy games drive me crazy because they require too much thinking.

Sunday, I went to 9:00 Sacrament meeting while everyone else was home and James at his normal morning meetings. They all went to church at 1:00 while I hung out with Lewis. We both ended up taking naps in the chair. I usually fall asleep at night in that chair too, when I'm trying to get Lewis to bed. I'm often asleep by 9:45 or so, but I can't say I'm terribly sleep-deprived. I could just use a cat nap here and there. The rest of the evening was spent talking to families and eating a yummy dinner and dessert.

Monday, everyone left to go home and there was no school, so we spent the day cleaning and relaxing, a pretty typical holiday around here.

Tuesday through today have been about the same. I've been keeping up with the housework while feeding Lewis what feels like constantly. It's worth it have a kid who sleeps so well at night. He goes to be between 9:30 and 10 and wakes 1-2x during the night, then wakes up for the morning between 7:00 and 8:00...usually. One morning it was 6:00.

Last night was a terrible night for me, but nothing to do with Lewis. I had fed him at 3 a.m. but couldn't get back to sleep. At 4 a.m., I got some terrible afterbirth pains. I had to take both ibuprofen and Percoset and get in a warm bath. It took till 5:30 to get back to sleep. I had pains like that after Kenny - weird, random pain in the middle of the night after a week of no pain at all. It's like all my insides shrinking are having some trouble. Thankfully I feel fine now.

We're getting a lot of snow. I don't care, because I know it's going to melt soon. I can't wait for March to roll around soon, because that means spring and my birthday, and then our quarantine is over.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Week 2

Week 2 with a newborn is always a thousand times better than the first week. This time around was no exception. The first few nights home, Lewis did not sleep well, but he soon figured out night and day and has been doing exceptionally well. Typically, he eats a lot while he is awake (about 2 hours, during which he often eats twice), but then he takes really long naps. Usually he does 3 naps that are 2-3 hours each. The only thing I've done to manipulate his schedule is wake him up around 8 p.m. and keep him awake until 10 p.m. Then, he usually wakes up 2x during the night and is up the next morning around 7 or 8. Last night, he actually only woke up once (around 3:30), so I've been getting really good sleep. The only thing that has really been interrupting it is my random hormonal sweating that is thankfully almost gone.

I have been a lot less emotional this week as well, thank goodness. I have my moments where I cry, but I don't feel like I can't stop. I have been doing some cooking again and some basic cleaning, but nothing too intense. I even went grocery shopping, and it wasn't bad. I do get occasional aches, but nothing that requires medicine. I look okay in my regular shirts and can wear some of my pants (the baggy ones). I don't feel too bad considering what I went through 2 weeks ago.

Everyone is adjusting well to our new little family member. The kids all adore him, and there has been no sign on jealousy. I will be really glad when we can all go out together (at the end of RSV season, which is at the end of March.) I might go a little crazy, especially on Sundays when it's hard to coordinate going to different church meetings when James already has meetings in the mornings. I know it will work out, though, and this is just temporary and necessary for Lewis's good health.

James's mom and brother are visiting. They arrived yesterday and are staying until Monday (I think). It has been really good to have more emotional support and help with the cooking and cleaning. It's not that I can't get it done, I just don't get things done as quickly as I did since I have more interruptions for feedings and such. If anything, my days have gotten longer since I no longer nap - and neither does Katie. That was pretty upsetting for the first few days, but I've since learned to roll with it and hang out with Katie and Kenny more while Lewis takes his afternoon nap. They are pretty entertaining to talk to and are even starting to get along better.

I am certain that I'm going to make it. A week ago, I wasn't so sure. I'm glad that things always get better, even though it takes some time.

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Lewis Wade Head

It was a pretty exciting week, to say the least. Warning: this post will be very long.

Sunday and Monday passed pretty normally. I was officially due Sunday, but nothing happening, so I went to church. Tuesday, I woke up with painful contractions, so James stayed home from school. I really thought it was the real thing, but it wasn't. Despite walking a lot, they tapered off by evening. Mom and Myles arrived that day, so we just hung out.

Wednesday at my doctor's appointment, I got my membranes stripped. Long story short, that didn't work either. I went in Thursday morning to get induced, something I thought I'd never do, but I actually felt pretty peaceful about it. I got a pretty good night of sleep, and we headed to the hospital at 7 a.m. for my induction. I was having contractions, but they were still just 10 minutes apart and not progressing at all. My induction felt a lot like my other labors, because they have all required Pitocin anyway to help speed them along. Everything went pretty well until I got to 7 cm. The baby's heart rate kept dropping and taking a long time to recover. They actually turned the Pitocin off by this point because the contractions were strong enough. They also put some internal monitors on the baby to make sure he was really okay. It was pretty clear that he was distressed by the contractions.

At 9 cm, I signed a consent form for a possible C-section and they got the OR ready. A few minutes later I was at 10 cm, so I ended up delivering in the OR. I had to get unhooked from the epidural at this point to transfer rooms, and they couldn't hook it back up because it was no longer sterile. Needless to say, I had a pretty horrible time with pushing. The dr. used several vacuums to assist, because the baby really needed to come out quickly. His head was turned a little the side, which explained why he wasn't coming out easily. After about half an hour (I was in too much pain to really know), Lewis was finally born at 10:04 p.m. Once his head was out, his whole body came with it. I'm just glad he didn't end up on the floor. He was 7 lbs. 7 oz. and 20 1/2 inches long.

I started shaking uncontrollably at this point. The OR was freezing, and I had literally been 1 cm from a C-section, and the pain was so great I just wanted to quit and get knocked out. I'm glad I made it, though.

Lewis was a little pale and not quite as responsive as they would have liked, so they whisked him away to the nursery (which is also the NICU, but I didn't know that till a few days later) to be hooked up to oxygen and a couple other things, but I'm not sure what. I was too out of it. Despite the difficult delivery, I didn't feel too terrible after some sleep and a few meals - and a shower. I also didn't tear, but I have no idea how that's even possible.

Friday, I felt a lot better physically, but not so much emotionally. Lewis made huge improvements and was off everything except oxygen. I was finally able to nurse him for the first time around noon. (Delaying made me more emotional, but it did not affect his ability to learn to nurse, in case anyone was worried about that.) My family came to visit around lunch and see him through the window. Children under 13 weren't allowed back at all because of RSV season. I kept on feeding him every few hours morning and night, and he did really well.

Saturday was mostly the same (feeding, family visit, and some paperwork and lots of rest). I got officially discharged but decided to stay put so I could be available for feedings. Saturday night and all of Sunday were the most emotional time because of my milk coming in and not being able to go home with Lewis. I went home for a little bit on Sunday to see the kids before church, but it was heartbreaking to be there without my baby. James was good to stay with me every single night on that uncomfortable couch-bed.

Monday morning, I finally got to keep Lewis in the room with me! He was off oxygen and just had one monitor on his foot. That one monitor was pretty stressful, though. It kept beeping every few minutes, and my first thought was, "My baby is dying!" every time. I returned him to the nursery for night time so I could sleep. I ended up feeding him 4x, so not much sleep happened, but that didn't matter.

Tuesday, we finally got to come home! It was so wonderful to have a baby with no monitors attached and to eat real food, take a nap in my own bed, and have everyone finally get to hold him. I've been playing catch up today with paperwork and bills, but not too much cleaning yet. I've been recovering really well and don't need pain meds anymore. Lewis is completely healthy, eating and sleeping and pooping all the time. He is seldom awake, but when he is, he is very calm and alert.

One of the nurses said she would have sent us home Saturday or Sunday, so that really didn't help the experience. It seemed that they were very strict on what he had to do to break out of the NICU - like stay warm, gain weight, etc. which shouldn't be a problem for any full term baby. He didn't have any problems with those things at all. He is already heavier than his birth weight, and he not even a week old.

How I survived, really: Mom and Myles taking care of the kids, James being able to stay with me night and day, and spending lots of time in the nursery/NICU talking to the nurses. That's not to mention many prayers and several blessings to be able to cope with everything. It was impossible to stay alone during this trial. I'm really glad he got good care, and I know I did the right thing in having him, but it certainly doesn't make me excited to have another baby any time soon. I have already forgotten a lot of the physical pain because my recovery has been pretty quick, but I know the emotional pain will linger longer. I know that many women have much worse experiences than I do, but this was definitely my worst birth story. Despite all that, the fact that I can write this story without sobbing (still a few tears, but not too many) shows how powerful that Atonement is when it comes to healing. I'm grateful to have this little boy. I am sad for my friends who have experienced outcomes that were not as favorable as mine.

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Getting Close

Everything is driving me crazy: my fighting children, the insane amount of snow that keeps on coming, the internet not working almost every afternoon, boredom, and the waiting game. I have a doctor's appointment today, and I'm really hoping for some good news. Even though dilation really has nothing to do with when I'll deliver, it would still be nice to know that something has been happening during this last week of misery.

Next time I write, I plan on having 4 kids! :) Hopefully that will be in a week or less. Joseph was born at 40w and Kenny and Katie at 40w3d, so that puts me at Wednesday at the latest. If I go past that, I will definitely lose my mind!

Monday, January 23, 2017

More Birthday/Heads Visit

Friday was day two of James's birthday celebrations. (I guess I'm too tired to cram everything into one day.) He chose a movie from Redbox, and we had snacks that I bought for him. I got fancy flavored pretzels and beef jerky, two things I never buy. I attended a baptism in the afternoon for one of my Primary kids.

Saturday was a family fun day. Since he got ammo and a sled, he took the kids sledding and went hunting. We've definitely got enough snow, probably about a foot accumulated.

Sunday was good and pretty normal. I love being in Relief Society again! I also love being able to talk to adults.

Mon. - Wed. were all kind of the same. We didn't do anything in particular that stands out. I'm starting to feel miserable because my stomach always seems upset and food doesn't taste as good. Still not sleeping well either...

Thursday, I too the kids with me to my doctor's appointment. No news there either. I'm not terribly worried, because nothing happened with Joseph until I actually went into labor. He is the only one that wasn't late so far.

James's mom, dad, and Anna and Joseph came to visit. I made dinner for everyone and then everyone went swimming at the hotel except for me. I attended my last self-reliance class. It was so sad, but I am ready to have a baby and wouldn't want to miss class (or take him with me). I finished my photo book from Shutterfly while everyone played a board game. (I'm just not much into board games, especially strategy games that take a long time. I get frustrated when I have to learn lots of rules, make a lot of effort, or think a lot to have fun. I do love word games like Scrabble.)

Friday was a great day. I got all the laundry done in the morning and went to the temple while Grandma, Uncle Joseph, and Kenny and Katie went to the dinosaur museum. We all got home in time to eat lunch together, and then I took a nap. Grandma, James, and the Josephs went ice skating in the afternoon. After my nap, I had the kids helps me put the baby swing together. After IKEA furniture, it was a piece of cake! We went out for dinner with James's parents to a really good Mexican place in town. The food comes on platters and is probably enough for 3 meals, but I managed to eat it all in 2. We watched a movie (the new version of Annie) after coming home.

Saturday, we ate breakfast and went swimming at the hotel. James's family had to leave after that, so we spent the the rest of the day doing absolutely nothing. It was great. Everyone needs a day like that once in a while.

Sunday was normal again, nothing to report.

Today I did 4 loads of laundry, mostly bedding, since I'm such an overachiever and do it once a month. (How does anyone have time to wash everything once a week?!) I've been grumpy, achy, and a little stressed, but I think I'm going to make it through another week. After all, I am due on Sunday! We'll see how the rest of the week goes. My prediction is lots more achiness, but no baby.

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Snowy Days/James's Birthday

Friday, James drove to Roosevelt to buy the first 6 months of our long-term food storage. While he was gone, I worked on my last queen denim quilt. He helped me tie it when he got home, and I decided to go ahead and finish it even though I stayed up until almost midnight.

Saturday, we ran some errands with the kids after putting the food storage under Katie's bed. They were exceptionally well-behaved, considering we went to 6 places. Pizza Hut was having a deal online, so I took Joseph to get his Book-It pizza and got some for us too for dinner.

Sunday was a good day. It is so nice to go to Sunday School and Relief Society! I had forgotten about the family history class that is offered every other week. It's fun to be in a small group setting.

We got tons of snow this week, pretty much Monday through today. They even had to come out and plow our road, which they don't normally do unless it gets really bad. James and Joseph have been doing a lot of shoveling. I tried one day but gave up because my back hurt too much.

I updated our food storage binder and worked on a few small crafts (knitting, friendship bracelets). A lady in my ward came to get the blankets to donate to the women's shelter. Since that cleared up a lot of space, I got out all the baby blankets, washed them, and put them away. Since I was already on a roll, I got out my regular clothes (which fit in my dresser along with my maternity stuff) and sorted through them. I am really ready to get this baby out. I feel achy and even more tired than I did a month ago. I can't seem to get much good sleep, and I am always too hot, even though every one else in my house is freezing. Oh well. Just a few more weeks to go. The dr. said I lost a pound in the previous week. I just laughed, because I think it's a fluke. (At least I am finally over my sinus infection, because I really couldn't taste anything, which was really annoying!)

Today is James's birthday! I made him grits, eggs, and sausage for breakfast. For dinner, he will get crab cakes (real crab, which is a big splurge), baked potatoes, and corn, with "better than sex" cake for dessert. (I've actually never eaten this particular cake, but I'm sure the name is exaggerated.) Presents will include a sled and ammo, which should make for a fun weekend.

I also have my next-to-last self-reliance class. How sad. I guess they can't go on forever.

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Christmas Break, Pt. 2

We left Friday and headed home from Rexburg. First was a stop at IKEA in Draper to buy a couple of small dressers and an end table. We had gotten some Walmart gift cards from both my parents and Jacob, so I used those on groceries later and spent that amount of money at IKEA. We finally arrived home and put the kids to bed. I got everything unpacked.

Saturday, I cleaned out the car and went shopping. James started rearranging our room and even organized the shed so we can have less clutter (like bins of kids' clothes). I was too tired to help much on Saturday.

Sunday, it was really nice not to teach Primary. My kids did not behave too well during Sacrament meeting, so I especially enjoyed going to Sunday School and Relief Society. After church, I worked with James to figure out what we're going to get for our 6 months of basic food storage. It's the big gift from his parents this year, and I am really excited. Because of my food storage blog, I actually already know what we're getting. I just had to make a few minor tweaks.

Monday and Tuesday, we finished the organizing. I put together the 2 IKEA dressers, we took down Christmas decorations and put them all away, and James took everything out from under our bed and Katie's in preparation for storing the food. He did a great job organizing the shed, putting up hooks, and really clearing out our room to make it look better. I did the dresser swap, so one of the small ones went to Lewis, his big dresser to me, the same one for James, and the other small one for an extra. I am currently storing blankets for charity in it. We had a really fun FHE with the kids at the high school. We played with bubbles, flew airplanes on Google Earth, and played Spot It. My boys are better at that game than I am. We also went to Wendy's for sriracha fries and frosties. (I highly recommend the fries; they are delicious if you like cheesy and spicy together!)

Wednesday, school started. I finished dehydrating all the apples I got from Melodie and also made a pie. I've been working on my last quilt, a queen-sized denim one for charity. It's going well, though I admit I'm getting sick of sewing. Being done will completely clean out my craft supplies, so I can't make anything else even if I want to. I plan on starting to get things ready for Lewis and maybe being a little lazy...and hopeful that he will show up a few days early? (I won't hope for too much on that one.)

I've been a little sick. I got a cold right before we left for Rexburg, and I think it's now a sinus infection. It seems to be clearing up all right. No one else in my family is sick, so I'm blaming my suppressed immune system. For it being so snowy and cloudy since we got home, I actually feel pretty happy. I tried to do a little shoveling today, but I quit after 30 minutes because it was hurting my back. It also looks like it didn't do any good, because the snow hasn't stopped  yet. Oh well. I see the OB every week now. I've stopped caring about how much I weigh at this point. I will finish out this pregnancy with 35 lbs. gained, but that's not terrible considering how much stress eating I've done over the past 8 months.

Life is good. I can't wait to get this baby boy out. His movements aren't cute anymore; they're very uncomfortable. 3 1/2 weeks to go!