Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Lord of the Sith and Other Games

Both Josh and I love games. Not surprisingly, the boys do, too. About a week before Haddie was born, we tried to have a few family game nights to spend some extra time with the boys. This would ensure that this tired mama could sit down and play in the comfort of her air conditioned house. Since we came home from the hospital, I try to play games with the boys each day. It doesn't always happen, but usually, we can squeeze in a couple of games while Haddie is napping. 

The boys have quite the plethora of games, thanks to Christmases and birthdays. Some days we play Old Maid. Another day it might be Don't Break the Ice. Liam, in true middle-child fashion, doesn't always march to the beat of the same drum as the rest of us. Instead of playing some board game or card game we already have, he invented a game. And because it's so hilarious, we all agree to play. 

Everytime. Even though it involves running around like a maniac for this tired mama. 

The game is called Lord of the Sith. Or at least, Josh and I are pretty sure that's what he says. It sounds like: Lord of the Cents or Lord of the Sense, but he doesn't know or use the words "cents" or "sense," nor does it fit. Recently, I heard C ask L Child if he could be the "Sense" this time, and it clicked: Pretty sure they are saying "Sith." They boys have watched Star Wars Episode 1, hence the introduction to a Sith. And no, they haven't been introduced to the wonders of the Lord of the Rings, but they do love the Veggie Tales version of it: Lord of the Beans. Hence, the Lord of the Sith game was born.

One player is added at a time. Since Liam is the creator of the game, he always goes first and then picks the line-up. C never argues with this logic. It's the rules, so who's to argue if you are last?

You walk/run around the table "driving" a car. Much like Mario Kart Wii.

Depending on Liam's rules for the day, you can stall your opponents out by throwing things at them, shooting them with fire or ice.
My favorite is when you can shoot ice. This is Liam frozen waiting to thaw.

The best part of the game is that Liam and Mama always win. (C always wins at Mario Kart so I guess that's why Liam made up this rule as well!)

When we aren't playing Lord of the Sith, other games might include throwing "wolverangs" (boomerangs)...

....and board games like Uncle Wiggily. Casen's favorite currently. Liam really likes it too because he can count well now.

It's never a dull moment!

Bedtime Routine

I started taking Haddie to the boys' bed for storytime, songs, and prayers at bedtime. She doesn't always make it through the entire line-up, but she has twice. She likes watching the boys (can't you tell from the picture?) and listening to our voices. The boys LOVE her laying next to them. If she starts fussing, they will usually start singing to her so she can stay. I'm so thankful that they like her so much. Though they've had some difficulties adjusting to life with a baby, they seem to still like her. There's been some behavior issues, but they are directed at Josh and me, not at Haddie. As our pediatrician told us when I described the current adjustment of the boys, "Yeah, most kids innately know that the baby is an innocent bystander in all this. It's Mom and Dad's fault." Made me laugh and be thankful.

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Math Dreaming

Button must be a growin' because she isn't sleeping as long at a time. She is wanting to eat more often. As a result, I'm really tired. As she and I were napping through the morning, I had a dream I was using dimensional analysis to convert ounces of milk into gallons. It was really hard to do in my head!

Friday, July 26, 2013


The last couple weeks as a family of five has been difficult at times, but as I've written before, my cup is full. I'm so very happy. As Josh wrote about in his blog entry, we've waited a long time for Haddie.  I think that is at the root of my happiness. It's also a blessing that having her is even better than I imagined. I love to watch Josh with her. I love to watch the boys with her.

Haddie is by far my easiest baby to this point. Hopefully, it stays that way! She eats about every 3-4 hours (at night she can go about 5-6 hours usually). After she eats, she will be awake for a little bit (less than 30 minutes typically) and then goes back to sleep til she is hungry again. I told her pediatrician how easy she is, and he replied, "The third one always is. If you had reversed your kids, whichever boy was your third, would be your easiest. That's because of you and Josh." I agree partly with this philosophy. Both Josh and I are more relaxed and do not go running to pick Haddie up with each little sound she makes. I try to pause and wait and see what she needs. I also think she naturally loves to sleep and is laid back. I know other firstborns who sleep well at a young age. Whatever the reason, I'm thankful I have a newborn that sleeps so much at a time. After Mr. Casen who liked to nurse about every hour, 24-7 (at least that's what I remember), I can appreciate this different experience.

I wouldn't say that the last couple weeks have flown by though despite having a pretty easy newborn. I know one day I'll look back and won't remember these days as clearly. That thought makes me try to soak in these special early days with Haddie. I'm tired and worn out from the delivery. Hormones are still out-of-whack some days. I'm trying to find the balance of having three kids. I'm redefining quality time with Josh...oohing over or feeding Haddie in the evening and possibly staying awake together to watch a show. Through all this, I know that time will bring refreshment and adjustment. Until then, I'm wondering what I'll say about having the third in a year or so. One person told me, "We lost control when we had the third." Another told me, "The third was the easiest."

Some highlights I want to remember but probably won't unless I write (blog) about it:

Casen calling baby by her full name: Hadassah Jayne. Always. "Oh, Hadassah Jayne looks cute."

Liam insisting on holding her several times a day. The way he continually checks on her - especially if she isn't with me in the living room. "Where's Baby Button?"

Casen and Liam singing Godspeed (Sweet Dreams) to Button anytime she is fussy or crying. They change the lyrics "little man" to "little woman."

The way Haddie looked for Josh in the hospital when she heard his voice. The way she will look for the boys sometimes if she hears them at home.

Haddie all curled up into a little ball on her Daddy's chest or shoulder. And the look on his face when he holds her.

*Funny enough (well, funny because of the lack of sleep probably), Haddie had rough nights the nights I started this blog post and the night I finished it (non-consecutive nights). Makes me appreciate the good nights!

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Like Her Big Brothers

We are all adjusting to life with Baby Button. She is still a pretty easy baby even though the fussiness has set in a little bit. She has very awake times and usually is pretty alert right after the boys go to bed. Josh and I enjoy that time where we can ooh and ahh over her and not have to share her (or ourselves) for a bit.


Last night, she woke up and after she ate, she was very alert. The night before she had done the exact same thing with Josh...and kept Josh up about two hours. I told her last night, "You gotta go to sleep, girl. I don't want to stay up two hours like Daddy did last night."

I promise you: she smiled real big at me and then cut her eyes from side to side several times. Her onery look reminded me of her big brothers. 

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Little Man

Casen decided it was time to teach Haddie how to crawl....

...roll over...

...and walk.

He also has taken to sitting in the kid rocking chair in the living room, rocking and telling stories. Like an old man. He also likes peppermints, werthers, and lifesavers.

Brothers and Sister

C is the proud big brother still.
L Child holds Button several times a day. This is  early this morning as soon as Haddie woke up (he hadn't been awake long either).


Saturday, July 13, 2013

Guest Blogger: For Such a Time as This

Josh has a way with words as he proved with the births of Casen and Liam.

On July 10, 2013, at approximately 3:24 p.m. our baby girl had finally arrived.  Although my wife was pregnant with her for 9 months, we had been expecting her for several years.  Let me take you back about 6.5 years ago.  You see, I was convinced that God would give us a daughter first.  Both my brother and my sister had little girls and we had several friends who were having girls.  Thus, I thought, “Why not me?”  So my wife and I talked about potential names.  We had some solid ideas like Madeline Jayne, Savannah Jayne, and Jacqueline Marie.  Although we loved these names, we weren’t completely sold.  Then we stumbled across a book series by Francine Rivers called The Mark of Lion Trilogy.  One of the main characters in this Christian fiction series went by the name Hadassah.  She was characterized as God-fearing, strong, and faithful, much like the Hadassah (Esther) that we read about in the Old Testament.  Esther is a fascinating book and she was an amazing woman.  Just like the book trilogy, the Hadassah we read about in the Old Testament is one you can’t help to admire and love.  As my wife and I discussed this character from the book series as well as the inspired true story we have in our Bibles, we thought, “What about ‘Hadassah?’”  We were immediately SOLD!  We chose “Jayne” as the middle name to carry on the legacy of another great woman – my wife and her mother, Amanda Jayne.  

Although we were expecting a little girl, God had other plans.  About halfway through our first pregnancy, we discovered we were having a little boy instead. We were thrilled about bringing a little boy into our family, but we’d have to put our plans for a little girl on hold.  Therefore, the name, Hadassah “Haddie” Jayne, went into the vault until God decided it was time for her to join our family.  Twenty-three months after our first born, with open arms and hearts we welcomed our second boy into our family.  We have thoroughly enjoyed our time with our boys over the last several years, but what about our daughter? What about Haddie? Would God bring her into our lives as part of His plan, or were we victims of the disheartening concept known as “wishful thinking?”

In November of 2011, we were met with devastation as God took a child of ours home only 5 weeks after life was formed.  For months, Amanda and I grieved the loss our unborn little one, then, toward the end of October 2012, we discovered life was growing in the womb once again.  We were excited, but scared at the same time.  Our anxiety eased little by little as the weeks went by and our baby received good reports of health from the doctor.  However, the question still on lingered, was this Hadassah?  Was this the little girl we had been expecting for over half a decade? Several weeks into the pregnancy, which felt like years, it was revealed to us – it was her!

Yesterday, after a long wait and much anticipation, I observed as Hadassah Jayne entered into this world.  As always, it was such an amazing experience! And just like the births of my two boys, Haddie’s was unique in its own.  The moment we arrived to the hospital, I felt nervous.  But this was a different kind of nervousness than I had felt with my boys.  These weren’t the nerves of excitement and fear of being a first time father, nor were these the nerves that go along with wondering if you’ll be able to love your second child as much as you do the first.  These were nerves of anticipation.  These were nerves of finally getting to meet someone that has existed for years in spirit and in your heart – “Today, we are finally going to meet our daughter, Hadassah.”

She arrived at 3:24 p.m., and when I heard her cries for the first time, my heart filled with joy and my eyes filled with tears.  She was beautiful, but boy was she mad!  She screamed and cried, but it was still, nonetheless, amazing! As she laid on her mama’s chest, I said a much anticipated “hello” to my daughter, Hadassah Jayne.  It was so surreal. I could not take my eyes off of her.  After I cut the cord, I followed the nurses as they took Haddie from the arms of her mother to perform all the “necessary” evaluations on a separate table.  She was still screaming and hollering and her limbs were flailing. My heart broke for her as the nurses poked and prodded her.  So in effort to comfort her I stuck out my index finger, and to my surprise she took hold of it then pulled my hand to her cheek. As I felt the warmth of her face and softness of her skin, my heart began to melt.  I know it was probably only for a moment, but that is one moment I will cherish for a lifetime.  Although she had her little hand tightly gripped around my finger, I think it was evident to everyone in the room that it was me that was wrapped around hers. 

Although she has existed for years, she was only minutes old; but she held my hand as if she had been waiting to see me too.  This is my daughter, my little girl, my Hadassah Jayne.

“And who knows, maybe you have been chosen to be the queen for such a time as this.” ~ Esther 4:14

Button Has Arrived

Hadassah Jayne arrived July 10 in the middle of the afternoon. She weighed 8 lbs, 7 oz and measured 19.5 inches long. This is how she looked once she was born.

And how she looks when she is messed with (diaper changes, waiting too long to eat, etc.).

Despite her strong opinions, she is actually been pretty easy. She was my easiest delivery and the child I've gotten the most sleep.

My cup is full. I have a million happy thoughts and cute observations of the boys and her Daddy. For now, here is proof Haddie already has her brothers wrapped around her finger (and proof her Daddy is in the next blog entry).

Saturday, July 06, 2013

Button's Room

We finished Button's room for the most part today.

New glider and stool cover
Cute large buttons that my Aunt Brenda found. Dad painted them.

Close-up of the curtains

Button tree for Miss Button

We had these little frames in Casen's nursery. Mom "girlified" the animals by adding bows and flowers.

We'll replace the page in the frame with pics of the boys meeting Button in the hospital.
The front bumper pad is done. We'll take it down when Button starts sleeping in her crib.
Pretty blanket
Mom did a good job with all the sewing!

What Button will see when she looks up from her crib.

We still have plans to add her name above her crib. We also are going to add her nickname "Button" above her dresser. I'm also going to hang up a few of her blankets/quilts on display next to the closet and window.

Her room is done. The rest of the house is clean. Josh hung up some more things around the house. I'm even caught up on laundry (well only one load is in the basket). Apparently, the only way for my house to be clean this many days in a row is to be having a baby!

Due Date

Well, I've made it to my due date, despite the many predictions of her being early. Like the boys, Button seems to prefer the comfort of inside my tummy. I have progressed more on my own though than I ever did with the boys and have had false labor pains every day. I was sure last night we would be going into the hospital with the type of contractions I had. No dice though. Maybe it'll be soon though. I have plans to walk later today after I finish some last minute things I need to get done (aka packing my hospital bag).

40 weeks with Button

40 weeks with L Child

40 weeks with C

41 weeks with C....I will not get to 41 weeks with Button.

The websites say that the baby is anywhere between 5-11 lbs.  I'm guessing she is a little over 8 lbs right now. Needless to say, we are excited to meet little Button finally!

My Buddy

L Child knew that change was a-comin' when we told the boys that we were having a baby. Though he is excited, I know he is adjusting to the idea of not being the baby anymore. Soon to be the middle child, I've been soaking up all the extra attention I've gotten from L Child. He's crawled up next to me while I'm resting or napping during the day and fallen asleep with me many times this past week. I've gotten extra stories, kisses, and hugs from this guy. Even though he told me this week once that he wasn't ready for Button to arrive, he also has been talking to her more (through my tummy). He also is making a list of things to do for he and I after Button and I come home from the hospital. First on the list: watch his nursery rhyme dance video together. I told him I'm pretty sure we can arrange that.

Tuesday, July 02, 2013

Stayin' Busy While Josh Was Gone

While Josh was gone last week for training, we stayed busy. Between some summer activities I wanted to squeeze in before Button arrives and prayers that Button doesn't make an appearance until Josh got back home, we got a lot done.

Took advantage of free kid bowling. Thanks to Dad for going with us so I didn't have to lift anything.

Mom went with me to the Science Museum. The boys had a blast! Thanks to Adub who gave us free tickets.

All five of us went to the pool for an afternoon. The boys did great. They weren't clingy like they usually are thanks to swim lessons. We even ran into Pam and Tulle there which was fun to visit.

We got to meet Baby Will when my cousin and her family came to the area to visit. Liam especially liked Baby Will.
I'm thankful for Mom and Dad helping out so much. There were parts of days (and one whole day) that I was exhausted and sick. It would have been rough if I hadn't had extra help with Josh gone. I'm glad Josh is home now. We all missed him, and now, Button can arrive anytime!