Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Sweetest Second Son

Saturday we celebrated the 2nd birthday of the sweetest second son, Amos Gray.
What with having given birth like, yesterday, we had a small low key shin dig at the park. Pizza delivery, store-made cake, playground equipment. Yup...that's about our speed these days.

The day was loosely construction themed and all the kids decorated foam hard hats (a.k.a - soft hats).

Amos and I had a food fight with the cake. See, I forgot a knife, so I cut the cake with the flap from a beer box (classy) and he went to eating like it was his job with no utensils what so ever.

Happy boy.
We loved celebrating this sweet little guy.
He adds so much joy and silliness to our lives.

Happy Birthday Little A!

Friday, August 26, 2011

Peek of the Week - August 26, 2011

What's Peek of the Week, you ask? It's our Friday feature and it's all about you! I want to hear (and share with my readers) what wowed you this week. It could be a cool finished project, a work in progress, a personal accomplishment, a cute kid moment, or something that surprised you.

If we could peek into your week - what would you want to show us?

Each week I'll share my own Peek of the Week to get the ball rolling, and invite you to link to your blog post about your Peek of the Week. I know y'all are up to cool stuff - we wanna see it!

We have had a wildly wonderful week - what with baby Hazel's arrival and whatnot.

Oh the whatnot.

We continued a family tradition this week. We mooshed the hands and feet of our children in clay to have a record of their tiny digits for posterity. Every time we've had a new baby, we've made everybody's hand and footprints in clay and then I have made Christmas ornaments from the master prints like so:

It was a total family affair.

After all...the family that clays together...stays together.

Hooray! We did it! It was dicey. There were tears. But we did it.

And now there are six little sets of hands and feet drying on the shelf. Zoiks.

Alrighty, your turn!
You could get peeking in three easy steps:
1. Blog about your Peek of the Week - whatever it is. Whatever happened that made you proud, laugh, smile, inspired, excited, or just plain happy - now that's worth sharing.
2. Include a link to this blog or put the Peek of the Week button (on the sidebar) in your post.
3. Link your blog post using the InLinkz button below.

If you don't get a chance to get here on Friday, feel free to link your post up later.
The InLinkz button will be active for 5 days.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Embracing Baby Hazel, Finally!

For last week's Embrace the Camera I was in labor! So, now finally I can link up with pictures of my actual daughter and me!

Happy 1 Week Birthday to Sweet Baby Hazel!

I'm throwing in this one of Amos just so he's not left out. He still keeps his distance from Hazel Mae, so it's hard to get a photo of him and her and me. So, headstands will have to do.

We are so thankful she's here. She is beyond precious and things are going quite swimmingly. We're really glad we have a Yaya around to keep balanced coverage when things get dicey. We're getting ready for lots of excitement in the coming days with Amos' 2nd birthday party and the 1st day of preschool for the boys. It's a fun busy week especially with this little pink bundle to carry around! She is such a joy!

Sending this over to Embrace the Camera!

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Hazel Meets The Boys

Sweet Hazel has been introduced to her big brother fan club.

Sweet pajamad Eli was brought over the night she was born. He brought her some soft toys and his undying adoration.
The next morning Yaya brought both boys over in their Big Brother shirts, looking very dapper and OLD! They both looked like giants to me.

Eli could not love her more. All day he squeals, "Look how cute she is." or "Look at her little feet." It's delightful.
They both loved being in our hospital room.
Joyful chaos.

When Amos first me Hazel, he was reserved. He reverted to form and devoted his attention to the iphone.
And to hashbrowns, which he downed in one bite.

He gave her a cursory glance or two, and I even talked him into a little pat. But that was about it.

But since we've been home, he's warmed to her. He talks about "Sis Sis" in shy observant tones, but still prefers to keep her at arms length.

We are all doing beautifully. Hazel could not be a sweeter presence here. Although she could sleep more (during the night). The boys are happy as clams and we are all taking good care of each other. Tonight we're going on our first little outing - dinner at the spaghetti factory and a trip to R.E.I. to get Amos' 1st backpack for school. Pretty exciting.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Little Sister: Peek of the Week!

Hazel Mae Decker-Smith was born on August 18, 2011 at 6:58 p.m. She weighed 8 pounds 7 ounces, and was 18.5 inches long. She's already met her oldest brother, and both brothers are coming back by to visit today. Everybody is doing well!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Hubby Update

Hi everyone, it's Jessa's hubby. We're in the hospital, and have been for almost 5 hours now. Jessa is hunkered down watching Friends of course (the episodes where Rachel is having her baby), and her contractions are getting stronger and are quite close together. So it shouldn't be long!

In the meantime, here's a photo from the room. This is Jessa video chatting with her friend Selena, via the wonders of the internet.

They are going to do another check in about an hour, so we'll have more information then. For those who are connected on Facebook, that is the place to see all the latest updates!

Embracing Our New Arrival

Full disclosure: This post was pre-written. That's because I'm a little busy today, having a baby. I am one full week late and went in this morning at 6:00 a.m. for my scheduled induction.

Three cheers for that!

So, today I Embrace the Camera with photos of me embracing my boys who will today gain a sister.

First, a woodsy snuggle with Eli a few years ago. Look at that little first born. What a gem.

And a lovely little smooch from yesterday with sweet baby A who is becoming a Big Brother today. He is a wonder.
Check back soon for the big news! And, while you're at it throw some good birthing juju out into the universe for me if you don't mind. It's much appreciated!!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Big Day!

Ok, not that Big Day. But the boys are having a big day.

It's bed graduation day!

Yesterday Amos self-ejected from his crib with a thump and a wail. So, it's time to upgrade.

Amos inherited the super cool racecar bed. He's totally excited. Probably too excited to sleep, hence the lingering presence of the crib. Once we get bed sleeping established we'll take the crib out and get everything all arranged just right.

For giving up his super cool racecar bed to his little bro, Eli got a super duper cool space bed:

Eric and I picked it up from IKEA last night and set it up first thing this morning.

I still contend that my uterus is like double ply, because I built bunk beds from the ground up this morning and there is NADA going on. No water breakage. No real contracting. Sup wit dat?

The bottom can either house a lower bunk or a fun play area. We went with play area.

They luuuuuuv it.

I just put them both down for naps in their new digs. We'll see if any actual napping occurs. So far it's mostly playing, but that's okay with me. They're so excited.

Safety note: Yaya is off buying plexi glass to cover the window so nobody falls out. And the blind cords are tucked out of reach. Never fear.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Update - Baby Progress and Blogging Malaise

Hi friends. We're still here. And by we, I mean me, and the baby girl child who will not get the heck out of my uterus.

I'm 3 days overdue. That's 3 of my 3 children who were late-comers. This is one posh uterus I tell ya. Nobody wants to check out of it a moment too soon.

So, here's the status of things:

1) Baby progress:
I've been to my 40 week check and not much is going on there. I will quote my OB to give you a sense of how close I am. She said I have "a kinda abysmal cervix." So there it is.

We went ahead and scheduled induction for the 18th. Now, my last two in-utero babies were very motivated by just putting an induction of the calendar. Both of them decided to vacate one day before I was to be induced. So, I've shown her a copy of the induction orders and given her notice of eviction come Thursday, if not before.

I have gone through every possible set of feelings about it all. Three or four weeks ago I was certain I wouldn't make it to my due date. I was less comfortable somehow then than I am now and everyday I didn't have her I was genuinely surprised. Then about two weeks ago I began my efforts to get her out. I tried all the tricks. I exhausted myself (and others), to no avail.

In the past few days I've settled on the fact that I have no control of it. In fact, and I don't mean this in a negative way, but I've actually given up hope that she'll come on her own. She's going to have to be induced. I feel this way because a) we've done everything but cartwheels to try to get things going and b) she does do cartwheels in there all the time and nothing changes (I think my amniotic sac may be literally made of steel) and c) I think my height and shape is preventing her from getting in the just right position to get her head down far enough to get things going (how's that for a very specific medical opinion from someone who's not medically trained?).

And I'm actually ok with it. I'm sleeping better because I'm not up all night trying to notice if I'm in labor. And I am allowing myself to relax about it and just rest for now.

2) The Blogging Malaise:
Sorry about the lack of blogging lately. I blame this on a number of things:
a) since all my nesting is done and I'm not embarking on unnecessary projects because I'm waiting to give birth, I have no fun projects to reveal to you.

b) my birthing suitcase has been in the back of the Jeep since we had our false alarm last Saturday and my camera cord is in there. So the few photos I have taken of our last week can't get onto my computer. I realize this is easily solved, but who are we kidding.

c) I'm eager to announce that she's here, so anything else I might blog about before then seems like a bit of a let down.

d) I also think it might be the full moon because like a third of my favorite bloggers are also having a blogging malaise. Maybe they're also waiting for my baby to be born to get back to blogging.

So hang in there folks. And I will too. If I'm right and she has to be induced, then by this time next week I should be holding my 2 or 3 day old baby girl.

Holding my baby girl. That's worth saying twice.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Embracing My Due Date

A little quote from last Thursday's post entitled "Embracing the Belly, Perhaps for the Last Time?":

I'm really really hoping this is the last embrace the camera post that involves belly shots. Next week, a shot of me snuggling Lil' Sis would be MUCH PREFERRED (by all I'm certain).

Well. No such luck. Even after the false alarm on Saturday, I'm still pregnant. And today is officially my due date. So that means, if nothing happens today, I'll be 3 for 3 for late babies. Man, my uterus must be one nice place.

So for today's Embrace the Camera,

I'm doing a little retrospective.

First, I give my first preggo belly. Here I am harboring sweet Eli:
On the left I'm about 36 weeks pregnant and I'm doing the plank position to try to get that breech baby to flip. It didn't work, but version did.

One the right I'm making pots. I'm probably 35 weeks along there. And crazy.

Here I am a day or two past my due date with Amazing Amos:
It was Eli's first day of school. What a week for that guy. Look how little!!!

And here we are now:
Officially due with Lil' Sis. And Amos holding on for dear life trying to get some snuggles. What a sweet boy.

So, let me encourage you baby girl to come on out! It's nice out here and we're all really ready to get our snuggles on with you. See you soon!!!

Monday, August 8, 2011

Patience, patience, and more patience.

The boys are having much better luck than I am finding ways to entertain themselves while we wait for Lil' Sis' arrival. Now that I've nested all their is to nest and am in the thumb-twiddling phase, I'm going 'round the bend. I'm not so good at the twiddling.

The boys on the other hand, twiddle with the best of 'em.

We have had a bit of action around here. Saturday evening I had a bout of contractions that were consistently 4 minutes apart and over a minute long. So we went in to see if it was go-time.

It was not. The frequency and length of the contractions are good, but they need to get more intense. I should've know that it wasn't it considering how much fun the fella and I were having in the hospital. That's too much laughing for real labor. I do appreciate his dramatic parking job however:
When your wife's in labor, you gotta do whachya gotta do.

But, it seems progress had been made and that I'm on my way and may even pop out my first ever on-time or (gasp) slightly early baby.

We shall see.