Lucas & Keandre L: "Hi baby bunny!" K: "I not a bunny!" L: "No, you're a human." K: "Mommy a grown-up. I be a grown-up in 60 minutes."
Destany, Lucas, and Mommy D: "What's that from?" (tiny sore on my arm, from IV at hospital) Me: "That's where they gave me fluids after Brooklyn was born." D: "Why did they give you fluids?! Was that your reward?" L: "Destany, after pushing a baby out, I think the baby is your reward."
Keandre "Mommy, why she eating your tummy?!?" (Brooklyn nursing)
Wishing he could use Mommy's inhaler.... "I need your breath! My tummy is hurting!" (Nice try, son.)
Mommy: "Do you need a bite to eat, to hold you over until dinner? K: "Yes, I need something to bite!"
Mommy: "Keandre, sit here until you are ready to obey." K: "Aaaah, that will be a looooong time!"
Over the last couple weeks, Keandre has become our early riser. Rather than sleeping in until 7 or 7:30am, as all the kids have typically done, he is routinely up at 6:30 or earlier. On this particular morning, I awoke to hear him in the family room, singing at the top of his lungs. I peeked in and found him sitting on his trike, wearing his tomato hat (not sure where it came from, but it is a favorite right now!). He was in his element, belting out songs at random.... He was SO happy....enjoying the peace and quiet of an early morning to himself.
Destany has been waiting a LONG time to have a little sister. She is so excited that Brooklyn is here! First thing in the morning, Destany comes into our room, her face lit up with a smile, asking, "Is my baby sister up yet?" She is always ready to lend a helping hand, whether it's by pushing the stroller, or passing me wipes during a diaper change.
Once her water was broken and active labor started (shortly after 5pm), it did not take long! We walked the halls a bit, and then Kiara got in the tub at about 7pm. At that point she was 6cm dilated. Just an hour later, it was time to push. It was very intense, but Kiara reached her goal of delivering without an epidural. She was SO happy! Now we are resting and enjoying some family time.
4:30am - Kiara had a regular OB appointment yesterday (Thursday) morning. She was already at 5cm, although not yet in active labor. She has been contracting and uncomfortable ever since her appointment, so we've decided to go ahead and head over to the hospital. Because of the Group B Strep, she will need 1 - 2 rounds of antibiotics before it's safe for baby to be born. (GBS is harmless for Mama, but very dangerous for baby.) We appreciate your prayers, and will update as we can.
9:00am - IV antibiotics, then slept for a couple hours. Kiara was woken regularly by contractions. It's great to have Laura as her nurse!
1:00pm - Walking to get contractions going further; hopefully doctor will agree to break her water soon. Kiara doesn't seem to go into active labor w/o having her water broken -- just the same endless contractions she has been having for weeks.
4:45pm - Water broken, so hopefully things will start progressing faster now...
Although my doctor told me last Thursday that my body is more than ready to go, baby girl has not chosen to make her appearance yet. Sometimes I am fine with this. I am not quite 38 weeks along, and we still have plenty to do to get ready for her. Other times I am SO ready to meet her and move on to our new normal. I am trying to be patient. In the meantime, here is one last belly pic.
Don't I LOOK ready?!
And here is one from about 3 weeks ago. The kids are constantly snuggling or kissing my belly. I love it!
When we are on the way to the hospital, we will post it here on the blog. :)
Last week, my friend Cate braided Destany's hair for me. I'd been stalling -- for quite some time -- because it's not so easy to lean over to twist and braid those beautiful curls these days!
Destany had a wonderful time hanging out with their family, and we are both loving the creative style Cate did! She has three daughters, so she has more practice at braiding than I do, and braids much more quickly than me. Now I have the luxury of re-braiding a section at a time to keep her hair looking neat. What a treat. Thank you, Cate!
Incidentally, Cate and I met on an international adoption hair care website with over 2,000 members. At the time, we lived less than two miles apart. To meet another family that loves the Lord, is passionate about adoption, and lived just down the street.....well, let's just say we both knew it was no coincidence!
Not too long ago, I posted about the desperate need for godly families to love and support our modern-day orphans and widows -- including through adoption. I also talked about how Andy and I long to support other adoptive families in their journey to bringing more children into their home. Well, here is our first opportunity!
Cate and Sean are selling some beautiful pendants on their blog, to raise money for their next adoption. I would love it if you would check them out! It is such a privilege to be able to support them as they begin this journey again. Their three daughters, who came home as toddlers and preschoolers, cannot wait to have a baby in the family. And we can't wait to see who God brings to their family! We love you guys, and will be praying for you all along the way.
Maybe it's our impatience over what has felt like a very long pregnancy. And we're definitely remembering the pets we grew up with, and the fun we had with them. Whatever the motivation, we are on a roll lately with thinking up fun projects and changes for our family life.
We went to a local feed store to check out the chickens. (Yes, chickens!) We'd like to have 2 - 3, for the yummy, organic eggs. We aren't ready to take the plunge yet, but we're well on our way.
While there, we also looked at the bunnies. We've had a couple great rabbits in the past, and have the full set-up. We keep them in the hutch for a while, until they are tame and settled in, and then they mostly run free in the yard. We love looking out the window and seeing them hopping around in the grass, reveling in their freedom and room to roam.
We hadn't told the kids we were considering buying one that day, so they were absolutely delighted when we picked out a cutie with the sweetest temperament and told them he was going home with us.
We had to postpone our much-awaited Birthmother's Day breakfast because Nichole suddenly needed to drive to Texas on Saturday morning. Arjay & Dedrick were visiting their Great-Grandma and Grandma in El Paso and needed to be picked up. Their Grandma got very sick; thankfully she is recovering now. Instead, to ease Destany's disappointment, we met at a McDonald's on Tuesday, for a little visit. As always, we had a great time! We feel so very blessed to have such a fun and easy-going relationship with Nichole, Marquis, and the boys.
Part of my former overwhelm at the Cloth Diapering world was all the different types of diapers available. I didn't know how to approach all the options, and was afraid of choosing the wrong diapers for our family. I didn't even understand what all the options were! Here, I'll break it down a little....
Fitteds -- cloth diapers that require a separate cover; can also be worn without the cover if your little one has a diaper rash, or just to save a step when you're at home and changing baby often.
One-Size diapers -- diapers made to accomodate a baby through a toddler, usually 10 - 30+ lbs.; these come as fitteds or AIOs/AI2s (see below).
Prefolds -- the flat diapers most people picture in their minds when someone says they are using cloth diapers; these require a separate cover, but you no longer need to use pins (check out Snappis!).
Pocket diapers - a diaper and cover in one; stuff the cover's inner pocket with absorbant liners.
All-in-Ones - complete diaper and cover in one; one of the most convenient ways to CD.
All-in-Twos - complete diaper and cover with an inner absorbant liner that snaps in or is sewn in, which lets it separate in the dryer or when hung up. AI2s usually dry more quickly than AIOs.
Hybrid - a reusable outer cover that can be used with cloth inners, or disposable inners that create less waste than regular disposables and are sometimes compostable.
We all know about Mother's Day, but did you know that another holiday is celebrated that same weekend? Birthmother's Day is the day before Mother's Day, and in our family we treat it as a special day to celebrate our connection with our children's birthmothers.
In years past, I have sent an update and special card around Birthmother's Day. But last year we were able to start a new tradition. For the first time, Destany and I officially celebrated Birthmother's day with her birthmom, Nichole. We had a fun and meaningful morning together at a local restaurant, treating ourselves to lots of uninterrupted time to catch up, and a special breakfast to celebrate the relationship we have together.
A few days ago, Destany called Nichole to invite her out to breakfast this next Saturday. She was delighted when Nichole said, "Well, of course!" Hopefully Baby Girl will cooperate so we can make some more special memories. :)
Keandre's birthmother lives out of state, and we have only sporadic contact right now, but we have been emailing back and forth this week and I am enjoying the opportunity to put together a special update and new pictures for her as well. As always, we are thankful that no matter the ups and downs we've faced in our relationship with her, she knows without a doubt that she is special to us and we care about her a lot.