Monday, December 10, 2018

Mission Impossible

Your mission readers, should you choose to accept...

Help me figure out the secret of Christmas gift giving, or how to get gifts secretly.

You see, my mission is to surprise my husband with a really great gift.

I have two specific ideas, both of which I don't know much about. One is something electronic and the other is a gun that he has been wanting. Neither of which I feel like I should pick out on my own. One, because he knows so much about electronics, that if I picked it out he would most likely have to return it the next day. The next gift would be a new gun, and I feel like if I'm going shopping for a gun I should know more than just the name of the gun I'm looking for.

I have asked him to give me a list of ideas of what I can get him for Christmas because this year I'm a little lost on what to do. He gave me a very short list and most of the list consists of stuff he needs which isn't very fun. 

My husband isn't picky and he isn't a snob, but sometimes it seems impossible to shop for him.

So my mission is to find at least one thing that is totally unexpected and pretty cool. As, for the rest I'm not quite sure yet.

We have done Christmas's where we have picked out each other's gifts and we didn't know what we were getting until Christmas day. We have also done Christmas where we pick out our own gifts.

How do you and your spouse do Christmas? Are you surprised or do you pick out your own gifts?

Friday, December 7, 2018

A trip down memory lane

Yesterday I was looking through our old pictures. I don't know where the last three years went. They seem to be a blur in my mind. I remember all of these moments, but they just flew by.

First we had this crazy kid, who still always keeps us on our toes.

First VBS... Exhausting!

Then came baby #2

Baby Brother

First VBS... I see a pattern here... 

Shopping Shenanigans!

The Christmas cookies that probably should not have been eaten. There were a lot of baby hands in there... 

Christmas with cousins

I'm not really sure what happened here. 

First Fourth of July. He was wowed!

Can't resist those smiles. 

Then came baby #3. Baby Sister. 

That's all folks! The last three and a half years of my life in a nutshell. 
I feel like I just blinked and there it went. What did you miss the last time you blinked?

Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Making OCD Work for You

I really love it when my home is decorated for Christmas. There's something about the twinkling lights, the cozy fire in the fireplace, the Christmas music playing ...

My only problem is the stuff that comes before that. You know--the dragging the totes and boxes out of the basement and sorting through everything part.

The decorating part.

I don't really have a knack for decorating. I mean, sure I can look up how to do stuff and I can copy ideas that I've seen ... with minimal success.

I think decorating is too much like crafting. No matter what picture I have in my head, the end results look like a fifth grader did it.

No offense to fifth graders intended.

Because I dread doing the decorating, I was thrilled when Nick and Luke agreed to help. Of course
they had to get in the Christmas spirit first by watching Elf, a movie I absolutely hate. (Will Ferrell in yellow tights. Need I say more?), but hey, if it got them in enough of a Christmas spirit to help, then I'm all for it!

After the movie was over, the boys started sorting the branches for the Christmas tree. Someone gave us this tree, and this is the first year we've used it. I was busy setting out decorations elsewhere in the house, and I was pleasantly surprised when I came back to find the boys accurately and enthusiastically "fluffing" the branches. Luke, who tends to be OCD about things, was paying particular attention to detail. The next morning our tree was completely put together and I've never seen a fuller one. Or a taller one in our living room.

Sunday night I decided to try and put on the lights. I know lights should be woven in and out of the branches so the cords don't show, but I couldn't reach the top part of this tree even when standing on a chair. And the tree was so full, I couldn't get the cords tucked in well at all. When Luke came up and commented on my efforts, I told him he could do it himself if he wanted to. To my surprise, he did want to. He undid the little bit I'd managed to do and restrung it himself. As you can see, the height of the tree was not a problem for him.

You've got to be careful with that OCD stuff, though. Today I noticed that a swath of lights in the middle of the tree had stopped working. I told Luke I'd buy another set of lights if he'd fix it. My thought was to string the new lights through the middle of the tree and bypass the old strand that wasn't working. Instead, Luke undid all the lights, found where the problem was and fixed it, and then restrung them.

My way was easier. Just sayin'.

At any rate, now we have a beautiful lit tree that I need to finish decorating. I have ribbon to weave through and ornaments to put on ... or maybe I'll just wait until Luke comes home from work tomorrow. I'm sure he'd help. Right after he finishes his plan for outlining the dormer windows in red lights and the garage in blue ones.

So who does the decorating at your house? And how OCD are you?

Monday, December 3, 2018

Surviving Motherhood

We are a month into life with four girls and I'm going to be honest, it hasn't been the easiest adjusting this time around. The transition from one child to two was pretty easy, two children to three wasn't much different, but three children to four has seemed to be a little overwhelming lately. 

I feel as if I'm just not on top of my to do list as I used to be, my patience level is low, I constantly have mom guilt, and I feel stretched just a little too thin.

You might think reading this that it's the baby that's making me feel all of these things. Guess what, it's not. I prayed for a mellow baby this time, and God sure knew that I was going to need it.

It seems to be silly little things that are overwhelming me.

Could it be "baby blues?"

I'm worrying about things that I don't need too. I'm stressed because my housework isn't getting done. I'm getting irritated with things that aren't a big deal. For example, when my daughter accidentally gets a comb stuck in my hair, because she is trying to curl it, or when I'm trying to clean one room of my house, and a bomb is exploding in another. 

I don't want to feel this way so what was I going to do about it? First, accept the fact that I can't do it all. Second, prioritize better. Third, don't sweat the small stuff. If I can't do that then I'm going to miss out on the more important things and the sweet memories that are being made.

Did any of you have the baby blues? What advice do you have?

Friday, November 30, 2018

It's beginning to look a lot like....

It's 85 degrees here and I've got all the windows open. So as much as it doesn't really feel like Christmas here, we're getting ready to go get a tree today. The debate is do we get a American style full Christmas tree, a Charlie Brown Christmas tree, or maybe just a palm tree and hang some pineapple lights !?!  Presents fit under all three so what difference does it make?
This is how my kids spent their day yesterday, and my son even hot sun burned. So, I'm having a hard time really getting into it this year. 

If you ask the kids, they think we need all three... But I'm not really for that plan because that just means three trees in the house that I have to keep them from climbing on. No thank you. I am having a hard enough time keeping our crawler/almost walker from killing herself on the stairs. Why are stairs so attractive to a baby??

The kids have decided they want bikes and monkeys for Christmas this year. One may be possible, the other.... not so much. I'll let you figure out which one we're actually considering. 😏

It's also hard to feel Christmasy when there's fishing involved, and not the ice variety. Ya, I know, majot subject change, but my son got to go fishing for the first time and I had to slip it in somehow.

Isn't he just the cutest?!?! 

Allright, back to the main topic. What kind of tree do we get? Suggestions would be great!!! 

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

What's Christmas to you?

With a title like that, you might think I'm going for some deep reflection on the true meaning of Christmas.

You'd be wrong.

If you follow me or some of my boys on facebook or instagram, you might have seen our big discussion on the appropriate time to start listening to Christmas music. In case you missed it, the answer is whenever you feel like it. Most Christmas songs are cheerful and full of joy and if that gives you a pick-me-up, then you don't need to wait until after Thanksgiving for the boost.

Side note:  if your favorite carols include Blue Christmas or Christmas Shoes, then you have bigger issues than I can deal with in a single blogpost. Also, Christmas Shoes is not a Christmas song. It's a travesty that ought to be destroyed.

So I have a few questions for you about the holiday season. Feel free to answer one or all. Feel free to listen to Christmas music while you answer. Or Easter music. I don't judge.

1.What's your favorite Christmas movie?

2. What's your favorite Christmas song?

3. Name a holiday tradition that you always observe.

4. Finish this statement:  "My home's not decorated until ..."

5. What one decoration do you absolutely hate?

6. When do you put up your Christmas decorations?

My answers are in the comments.

Monday, November 26, 2018

Along Came Amelia (Part Two)

If you want to ready the whole story of Along Came Amelia, you can go to part one. I mean you should because who really likes to start a story in the middle of a book, right?

For the next two hours after Amelia was born nurses were in and out of the room, checking on me and checking on her. Amelia was doing well, however, I wish I could say the same for myself. There were no complications with the actual delivery but afterwards I was having postpartum Hemorrhaging.  The nurse came to my husband and I and told us that I would need to have a D and C with the possibility of having a hysterectomy. As she was explaining it to us out loud, and the words actually came out of her mouth, "If it ends up being a hysterectomy, you wouldn't be able to have any more children." It was heartbreaking and I couldn't help but to cry. 

**For a while I have been asking my husband how many children he actually wants to have. He never really has given me an answer other than, However many God wants us to have. I agree with that but I still have a number in mind, you know? You may not be sure that you want to have anymore but for someone to decide that for you is devastating.

I had tears streaming down my face as they took me from the delivery room to the Operating Room. Matt and I agreed there was no point in him waiting in the waiting room outside the O. R. when he could be with our newborn daughter. I was sad and scared heading to surgery for the very first time. They told me this surgery would be about an hour. One hour turned into three, because as I was having the D and C, my doctor found a second Placenta. This happens one in every 100,000 pregnancy. I was that one. I didn't end up getting the hysterectomy.

After the surgery, they moved me back to my room. I was back in my room for about 20 minutes when the doctor came to check my progress from the surgery. They weren't happy with it and before I knew it, I was heading back down for my second surgery. I was still too out of it from the anesthesia from the first surgery to realize what was actually about to happen. They were taking me in for a hysterectomy. My husband had to leave to go take care of some things for our other daughters and my mom was in the room waiting with Amelia, both of them were left thinking we weren't having any more children... 

At least that was the plan. My doctor discussed the situation with one of his colleagues before heading into surgery and he suggested a procedure that would keep me from having a hysterectomy. My doctor agreed to give it a try but we wouldn't really know if it would work or not until the next day. 

After the surgery was finished, and before I came back to the room. The doctor came into the room where my mom was and had told her about the procedure that he had done and that he didn't do the hysterectomy after all. She called my husband to tell him the news and he praised God for a miracle. 

After a restful night, the doctor came in the next morning and...

The procedure worked! Praise The Lord! 

Two weeks after being discharged I had a short consultation with my doctor. He said to me, "I bet you're wondering what I did in there." We had a laugh together and then he became serious as he explained to me what had actually happened. He shared with me that he was scared, which came as shock to me. Doctors aren't supposed to be scared, are they? He told me that my family gave him comfort as he talked to them each step of the way. He shared with me how calm they were and how nice of a gentleman my husband was. That made my heart happy, but I knew the only way that we were able to be calm and positive through it all was because God was there with us. Not to mention we had so many people praying for us.

If you're reading this blog today and you were one of those people praying, Thank You!

With just having finished Thanksgiving and being reminded what we just went through while writing this story. I've got a song on my mind and want to share.