Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween!

Halloween hasn't been this fun since... well, I'm not sure when! Chase was very excited about today and couldn't wait for it to get here. He has been wearing his Buzz Lightyear costume for quite some time now whenever the mood hits and he really likes it. Not to mention he is totally, completely, 100% adorable in it.

We've had "bake cookies" on our to-do list for a while and finally we got the chance last night. I'm telling you, I need about 10 more hours in the day to fit everything in! After Daddy picked Chase up this afternoon they were able to come home and decorate some. We took the easy way out and used the store-bought icing but Chase certainly didn't seem to mind! Pretty darn tasty if I do say so myself.

As soon as I got home from work we got Chase decked out and ready to go. Of course Molly put on her Buzz costume too so that she could tag along! We had quite an evening! We made our way to the fire station to play games, put out "fires" when the hose (Chase LOVED this), decorate paper pumpkins, and even jump in the moonwalk. Then we went to a local truck-or-treat before heading to a friend's house that had a special treat for Chase. Her neighborhood has lots of older retired people and they were so excited to see the kids. It was really neat. One older gentleman was waving us down to let Chase come get candy so even though we were ready to go, how do you say no? We walked up and you could just see how happy he was to have Chase trick-or-treating there. Chase picked out his piece of candy and although the man could barely hold the bowl of candy down on Chase's level he continued to offer him more and more a pat on the head. It was very sweet. I think that was my favorite part of the evening.

After that we went up to MeMaw and PawPaw's and Aunt Candy/Uncle Gene's. Chase definitely got more than his share of goodies! We also got to call Duchess and wish her a Happy Halloween. We finally ventured back to our neighborhood and I can honestly say that in the 9+ years that we have lived here we have never seen so many trick-or-treaters. Crazy! We managed to make it to Aunt Stacy's house for a special treat and then we decided that since it was late we were just going to keep the porch light off and call it a night. Good thing because after a tasty dinner of pancakes, sausage, and strawberries Chase fell asleep right in the chair! I guess our little superhero was all worn out from his big night!

**I am grateful for
1) a fun evening
2) warm feelings
3) Buzz Lightyear
4) smiles
5) good friends

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Everything I Need to Know I Learned From My 3 Year Old

~ Don't miss the little pleasures of life just because you are too busy searching for the big ones.
~ If you want something bad enough, don't let anything stand in your way.
~ Being good can help you get a lot of things, but being cute doesn't hurt either.
~ Laughter is contagious.
~ Sometimes you just need a good nap and then things will look a lot brighter.
~ If you don't get it right the first time, just try a second time, and a third time, and a fourth time... eventually you'll get it.
~ Take the time to enjoy everything, there are amazing things all around us.
~ Don't be afraid to take chances on a daily basis.
~ Sometimes it's really hard to share, but it makes you feel really good when you do it.
~ Be kind.
~ Try to make others proud. Make yourself proud.
~ Having a security item isn't necessarily a bad thing.
~ Don't waste a good imagination, use it as much as possible.
~ Follow your heart.
~ Laugh loud and laugh often.
~ Love those around you and make sure they know every chance you get.

**I am grateful for
1) my three year old and all he teaches me
2) time
3) laughter
4) life
5) memories (the good and the bad)

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Prayer Request

Tomorrow Baby Stellan will be entering the world. Please say a little prayer for him that he is born healthy and safe. To read the full story (and boy what a story it is) please click here.

**I am grateful for
1) tomorrow Stellan will be born with prayers surrounding him
2) tomorrow is hump-day!
3) cool weather
4) showers and quiet time
5) lower gas prices

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Some days I just don't know what to do....

Yesterday was a good day... no, yesterday was a GREAT day. Most days everything reminds me of the babies. I feel surrounded by pregnant women and babies are everywhere. Yesterday I thought of the babies but it wasn't constant. Yesterday I noticed the pregnant women, but I didn't feel surrounded and unable to breath when I saw them. Yesterday all I saw was my beautiful son and I didn't wonder if he'd ever get the chance to be the great big brother I know he would be with every baby I saw. But that was yesterday and today is today. Today I have thought about the babies constantly even though I have tried to push those thoughts way down deep. I would be 17 weeks and 2 days. Why do I keep track of that? Today I saw the pregnant women that seem to outnumber the stars and make me want to run and scream. Today I saw all the babies and wondered if my most precious gift would ever be a big brother... and my heart ached.

I love church. I love going, I love singing to God, I love listening to the sermons. They always seem to be directed towards me and say just what I need to hear. I just don't get why some days are so much harder than others. It's been two and a half months since losing the babies, you'd think I'd be passed the tears. Yet they still sneak up on me when I least expect it. As we sat in church the memories of that sweet Sunday when we told Jeff's aunt and uncle that Chase would be a big brother flooded my thoughts. It was so wonderful, they were so excited for us. We were sitting in the very same seats as we had been that day. The day I sang to God and thanked him for his blessings. Then the memory of that terrible phone call snuck in and turned my thoughts into something horrible. The phone call that told me something was terribly, terribly wrong. The phone call that caused my happiness to come crashing down. Then the tears came, there was no stopping them. As I strained to keep the tears and sobs from coming the words of a song I've never heard before filled my ears. A song that sung to my heart. A song that was telling me it's OK, everything will be OK. I couldn't find it on, but I did find it here. The lyrics are at the end of this post or on the link if you click it. It is an awesome song.

I'll admit it, I don't know what to do, I don't know what to say, I don't know where to go, and I don't know what to think. I feel so very lost. Surely God has a plan and even though I certainly don't understand it, I just have to trust it. Surely that is it.

**I am grateful for
1) the tears come less, but boy do they come hard
2) despite tough days, they do have happy moments
3) there is one heck of a cold front coming
4) the tahoe is doing much better
5) daylight savings time is next week and boy do I love an extra hour of sleep

When I Don't Know What To Do

Tommy Walker WeMobile Music ©2005 CCLI #4556332

Lord I surrender all to Your strong and faithful hand

In everything I will give thanks to You

I'll just trust Your perfect plan


When I don't know what to do

I'll lift my hands

When I don't know what to say

I'll speak Your praise

When I don't know where to go

I'll run to Your throne

When I don't know what to think

I'll stand on Your truth

When I don't know what to do

Lord I surrender all

Though I'll never understand

All the mysteries around me

I'll just trust your perfect plan


As I bow my knee

Send Your perfect peace

Send Your perfect peace Lord

As I lift my hands

Let Your healing come

Let Your healing come to me

Saturday, October 25, 2008

a good day

Today was a good day and boy did I need a good day. My school had our annual Fall Festival and Chase had a blast. He won the cookie walk a zillion times and I'm thinking that perhaps I need to let him play the lottery because he was one lucky little boy today! He was so excited and has graciously agreed to share his loot with us. :o) When Duchess showed up at the festival I think that just made it 10x better, he was so happy to see her (so was I)!

This weekend the traveling Vietnam Wall made it's way to our little town. We wanted to make sure we got by there with Chase because it's a once-in-a-lifetime thing and decided that since Duchess was in town we should trek on over after the festival. The wall is a third of the size of the one in Washington and is still huge. It was definitely an awe moment. So many names, so many lives lost. There are 58,106 names on that wall. 58,106 heroes. I know Chase is too little to understand, but I'm so glad that we went.

They also had a Huey helicopter there and Chase was totally impressed. They offered to let him sit in it and he gladly took them up. How many little boys can say that did that????

What an awesome day.

**I am grateful for
1) a great day
2) the heroes that gave their lives for us
3) the Halloween lights we get to drive around and look at
4) Duchess came to visit
5) silly little boys

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Now for the rest of the story.

So we ended up broke down in the middle of Del.hi, LA with two toddlers and a U.Haul. Fun times baby, fun times. We had Duchess' GPS unit so we plugged in the nearest mechanic and said a little prayer. Good news was he happened to be about a mile away, bad news was he didn't think he could get the part until the following day. He got our number and said he wanted to make some calls and would call us back. About 10 minutes later he called and said that the sole auto supply place had the part and if we could get the part and get to him he'd be more than happy to put it on. Turns out the store was literally across the street from where we were and they were so nice they even gave us a discount on the part. How cool is that? We managed to get the Tahoe going (barely) and made it to the mechanics, Mr. Cade. He told us to come in and have a seat, his wife put the TV on PBS for the kids, and they got busy on the Tahoe. I couldn't believe how nice they were! During that time my aunt had her sister-in-law head our way to relieve us of the U.Haul and take the strain off the Tahoe. They were just finishing on the Tahoe when she drove up. Perfect timing. The Tahoe passed the diagnostics test, the U.Haul was transferred to the other vehicle, and our total for part and labor was only $104. Mr. Cade, you were our angel, you saved us that day! We got back on the road and things were finally looking up!

We made our way to Jackson and were just about to meet up with my aunt when the engine light came back on. The Tahoe was running great so we continued on and drove the rest of the way to Starkville. Around 8 that night my phone rang with a number I didn't recognize. It was Mr. Cade wanting to check on us to make sure we were OK... see I told you he was an angel! We finally made it to the hotel 24 hours after leaving Texas. 700 miles in 24 hours... not very good timing! The hotel was awful, but we were sure grateful to be out of the car! We got everyone fed and in bed, with full intentions of going to a better hotel the next day (and boy did we).

Early the next morning we packed up and made our way to the new hotel. It was awesome. We had diagnostics run on the Tahoe again and although she is sick, she will be OK. The CD player is out and there is a loose cable, but nothing that will keep her from running. She will be making a doctor's appointment later in the week. We did make it home safe and sound late Sunday night without any more drama. However, at this point I'm definitely saying no more road trips for quite some time!

Now on to the fun stuff. On Friday night we had the rehearsal for my cousin's wedding. I had really hoped that Chase would cooperate, but apparently hoping isn't always enough (I should have known that). He was just plain pissed and did not want to have anything to do with it. He cried, he pouted, he screamed, he yelled, it was very dramatic. I felt awful. I kept reassuring them that Saturday would be different but let me say, my confidence was really wavering. Being the awesome parents we are we broke out the bribes big time. Bright and early Saturday morning we sped off to Walmart and let him pick out two toys with the agreement that he could not open them until after the wedding, IF he walked down the aisle and stood at the front like he was supposed to. We also told him that he could go stand by the girls if he got scared since several of them were also cousins and he knew them... unlike all of the boys. He agreed and the deal was sealed.

We ran around like crazy the rest of the day and before we knew it was time to get ready. Chase looked adorable. Really adorable doesn't do him justice. He looked so handsome, like such a big boy. The entire Georgia State soccer team was also at our hotel and some of them were in the elevator with us. They fell in love with Chase and went on and on about how cute he was and how pretty Mads was. Of course Chase just got mad and shot them with his lasers (a whole story in itself). We had to have Chase at the chapel three hours before the wedding. Anyone who has a toddler knows that three hours is a long time! He reluctantly took pictures and did as we asked. Then literally minutes before the wedding he decided he was tired and he was threw. ACK! I almost panicked and again I remembered the sign, "Trust in the Lord, he will see you through." He did. When the time came Chase walked down the aisle perfectly. Then he spent the entire wedding entertaining. He would jump down the step and then up the step, then down the step, then up the step. He would lay on his pillow and stretch. He realized there was a small hole in his pillow and quickly looked up to tell me. He sat with his hands on his knees and his chin on his hands. He was perfect. Meanwhile one of the flower girls busted the handle on her basket and sent beads everywhere. They spent the next 5 minutes picking them up and then putting their baskets on their heads like hats (there were two of them). Oh the things kids do.

We got so many compliments on how handsome Chase was and what a great job he did. I agreed with everyone of them. I was so proud of him and he certainly earned his rewards. It was a beautiful day and a beautiful wedding, although I can't say that I'm looking forward to another one soon!

For closing I will post some pictures of our handsome little dude. My cousin (yes I have a lot of them) was the photographer and I am emailing her to get some good ones from her. I'll definitely post those too when I get them! But for now, enjoy and remember that every day has the makings for a miracle!

***I am grateful for
1) good friends and good family
2) my test results came back benign (no I didn't blog, but there were prayers)
3) clean hotels
4) handsome little boys
5) miracles, no matter how small

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Every day has the possibility of a miracle.

Saturday Chase will be the ring bearer in my cousin's wedding. This will be his first wedding experience and we are due to be 700 miles from our house by Friday at 6 for the rehearsal. We thought we'd be ahead of the game, take Thursday/Friday off, and begin our road trip late Wednesday so that we could drive most of the way while Chase slept. As usual we left later than we had planned and didn't make it out the door until about 9... not what we'd hoped for but at least we were on our way. As we were walking out the door there was a flash of lightening and Chase said, "Jesus just took my picture." Yes baby, and he will be watching over you now more than ever. We were pulling a U.Haul to take the generators from Ike back and stopped to get gas before getting out of town. Looking back we should have been suspicious when only two pumps were working, hind-sight is 20/20. Duchess and Mads were riding with us and we knew we'd have plenty of entertainment for the 11 hour ride. I think the kids finally fell asleep around midnight and we decided to keep driving until we were to the point we needed to pull over. I'll admit that while they've done great, silence was golden. I was looking around and remember seeing a church sign that read, "Trust in the Lord, He will see you through." If we'd only knew then what we know now we would have pulled over way sooner.

At around 2 in the morning, in the middle of nowhere, with no lights on the road, and two sleeping toddlers, the Tahoe started making some really weird sounds and jerking in a way that it definitely should not have been. Instantly we knew we had a huge problem, bad thing is that our problem was only going to get way worse. All too quickly the Tahoe lost power. Jeff would hit the gas and nothing but sputtering and pulling. There was nothing. All the lights were still working but we just couldn't get it to go. We all thought about the gas, the pumps, Ike. Ike has done damage to so many stations and produced lots of bad gas. Perhaps that's what we'd got. We finally made it to a station that was open and asked where the closest town was that had a hotel. 13 miles. 13 long miles. I never thought we'd make it, we could barely get the Tahoe to move, much less go that far. By this time Chase was awake and crying. I was so scared. Please God, just let us make to a safe spot where we could get a hotel and put the babies to bed. Please let it be OK.

We did make it to the next town. We were literally coasting, but we made it. We tried one hotel and it was booked, there are still so many evacuees around. We were so scared to stop for the fear the Tahoe would not make it, my heart was racing. Thank God it was late because there was no stopping for stop signs and lights at this point. We made it to a second hotel and found a small slice of heaven. The staff were so caring and offered us help in any way, it was clean, it was dry (oh, did I not mention it has been thundering, raining, and lightening the entire way), and it was awesome.

Here is where I will make a long story short, if it's not too late for that. Fortunately I have an uncle that works with GMC designing and building their engines. He also thought perhaps we had gotten bad gas and suggested adding supplement to it and then continuing to run the tank down by driving. Less than 10 miles later we were in the same situation as before and having to drive on the shoulder with no power. We found a dealership that ran diagnostics and found out we had two sensors that were showing a history (meaning they were having issues). We reported the news to my uncle who said continue to drive until 1) the engine started flashing or 2) we couldn't go anymore. Fortunately only one sensor was the problem, the second was just having issues because of the first. It didn't take long before we couldn't go any further. 20 minutes later we found ourselves completely broke down in the middle of a small town. This is where our miracle begins. and we learned that angels are everywhere.

***Check back soon for the rest of the story.***

***I am grateful for
1) we are safe
2) angels are never where you thought they'd be
3) the kindness of strangers
4) the Tahoe is running again
5) we *almost* to our destination... almost

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

October 15th - Say a Little Prayer and Remember

"He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away."
Revelation 21:4

October 15th is the the National Day of Remembrance for Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness. This includes all babies who have died because of miscarriage, stillbirth, SIDS, or any other infant death. Please say a prayer for all of those families that have suffered such a painful loss. For those do not know my twin sister, Katie, went to heaven on August 30, 1976 due to SIDS and Jeff and I have three sweet angels in heaven (Chase's twin that went to heaven on July 5, 2004 and the twins we lost on August 14, 2008) due to miscarriage. So many of our family and friends have angels in heaven as well. I know that I will be sending lots of prayers to them from Texas.

**I am grateful for
1) I have hope
2) I have dreams
3) My angels in heaven and my angel on earth
4) strength
5) remembrance

The Pumpkin Patch

On Saturday we made our way down to The Pumpkin Patch and Chase LOVED it. Don't get me wrong, he's loved it every year but this year was different. I guess he is finally big enough to be excited and boy was he!! He went through the obstacle course and down the big slide more times than I could possibly count. He thought the duck races were a riot... so simple, yet so satisfying. All is was was three hand pumps connected to plastic pumps that the ducks raced down. New Fall Festival game???? We rode the train through the fields of Christmas trees (it's a Christmas tree farm too) and enjoyed several snow cones. However, I think his favorite part was climbing on the pumpkins - literally! He climbed and he climbed and he climbed some more! Then he found the perfect pumpkin and rolled it over to us after figuring out it was way too heavy to pick up. I think between him and Mads we ended up with out 14 pumpkins (give or take). Our only down-side was Duchess got stung by a bumblebee right after we went through the gates! Can you say ouch? Fortunately I had some Ben.adryl cream and that seemed to hold of too bad of a reaction. Now who else would get stung at the pumpkin patch?!?! Duchess is so special! ;o)

On another Halloween note, the neighborhood is quickly becoming decorated for the upcoming holiday. We put our stuff up a couple of weekends ago and Chase wants it plugged in constantly. He loves the holidays and although Christmas tops his list, Halloween is certainly close behind. Each night when it's dark and the lights come on Chase begs to drive around the neighborhood and look. Being the sucker I am for that boy I always oblige and load up to drive around. Most nights Molly goes with us because as Chase says, "she wants to look too." I guess I didn't realize the bulldog was that interested, but it's possible I suppose! Tonight I got home pretty late after running some errands and it was dark as I was pulling into the driveway. I asked if Chase wanted to drive around and he jumped right in the Tahoe while insisting that again, Molly wanted to look to." As we backed out of the driveway he exclaimed, "Mommy, I'm so excited!!!" It was pure enthusiasm. Totally makes the tank of gas I'm sure I'll use driving around to look at lights between now and Christmas worth it!

Riding the train w/Daddy

Rollin' the Perfect Pumpkin

Chase and Mommy

Duchess' Bee Sting - Ouch

Look at that tongue!

Lovin the Snowcones


Having a blast!

Enough with the pics!

**I am grateful for
1) a wonderful weekend
2) my yearly observation is O.V.E.R.!
3) my pedicure on Sunday... awesome
4) the full moon - so pretty
5) Halloween, it makes my Doodlebug so excited

Thursday, October 9, 2008

The Joys of Boys

"Chase, which pair of underwear would you like to wear?"
"The Wall-E ones mom, they are the ones that match my shirt!" (Duh, I should have known that.)

Boy it starts early!

**I am grateful for
1) the weekend
2) all ready for next week
3) family and friends
4) the playground
5) dirt covered little boys

Is it Friday yet?!?!?!?

I am so.very.tired. I'm pretty sure I'm fighting off something because as soon as I lay down I start coughing and by morning there is all kinds of gunk coming up. By 8 at night I swear I could go to sleep and not wake up until the next morning. Really, I could probably go to bed at 7 and not wake up until the next morning. Possibly even 6. I've been working 10+ hour days and still feel like I'm barely getting by. Every weekend seems to be just as busy as our weekdays so we are getting no down time. I swear, I'm behind on everything. I thought I was doing much better emotionally until a song came on the radio this morning and suddenly I was flooded with a sense of grief and tears came pouring down. Everything just seems to be piling up. I have my yearly observation on Monday or Tuesday (but I think it'll be Monday) so at least that will be one thing off my list. I am just so.very.tired.

Chase seems to be much better and will have his recheck and flu shot tomorrow. God I pray that he is all clear. Saturday we are heading to the pumpkin patch and he is very excited about that. He has informed me that he would like to pick out two pumpkins and then goes on to say that he also needs to get one for every person he can think of and also for all of the animals he can think of. I think I might be broke by the end of that trip! This time next week we'll be hitting the road for my cousin's wedding that he is the ring bearer in. Before we know it Halloween will be here, then Thanksgiving, and then Christmas. I have not bought one single gift. Where has the time gone?

**I am thankful for
1) the insurance adjuster did not find damage to the roof on the Running Bear house, he felt the wind was just so strong it blew the rain sideways and through the shingles, etc. Should be fairly inexpensive to fix.
2) it IS almost Friday
3) the pumpkin patch... we are gonna have so much fun
4) this time next week my observation will be over, I'm a Nervous Nellie for those things!
5) some awesome weather

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Find a Happy Place

I have never been a heavy sleeper. When I was little I would wake up in the middle of the night to tell my mother things I had remembered about my day. I apparently did this on such a regular basis that she eventually learned to respond to my stories in her sleep. When I became a mother I was so terrified of SIDS that my horrible sleep habits just got worse. I guess I shouldn't say habits though because it's really more of a waking up thing. I simply don't sleep through the night.... ever. I'm tired enough and I wish I could, but it just doesn't happen.

It also happens that I'm a dreamer when I am asleep. I know a lot of people don't remember their dreams, but I usually do. I'm not sure if it's because I am up so frequently or what. Lately my dreams have not been the kind that I care to remember. They are sad and depressing, they involve things I'd rather not relive or thing about. However, last night was very different. It seemed to only last a few minutes or perhaps it's just a few minutes that I remember. I was taking a HPT and it slowly became positive. Since we pretty much have a better shot at roping the moon than getting pregnant on our own, I was so ecstatic. I mean, I actually felt so happy. It was the weekend in my dream so we called our regular doctor to have her confirm it for us. I told her it was slow to show positive and so she wanted to do another. We did and immediately it was positive. I remember thinking that I wanted to just go scream it to the world and couldn't stop smiling. Then I woke up. I woke up so happy, it was a nice change. Of course reality came flooding back all too quickly, but those few moments are so wonderful. Don't get me wrong, I'm happy... how could I not be? I have a great husband, the most awesome son ever, a wonderful family, a pretty darn good live... I'm very happy. I just wish I had that dream become a reality, it would have made such a happy place to be.

**I am grateful for
1) It was a beautiful day to send Granny on her final journey
2) Halloween decorations are up and Chase is thrilled!
3) this time of year
4) insurance finally called about the damage on the Running Bear house so maybe we'll get it taken care of soon?
5) a wonderful dream

Thursday, October 2, 2008

On the mend

We had noticed that over the weekend Chase just wasn't acting like himself. For one thing he has been in big boy underwear since July 26th and had only had two accidents. Then last weekend he had two in the same day. Plus there was the fact that even though we still put him in night-time pull-ups at night, 9 out of 10 nights he still wakes up dry... until last week. Every morning he was waking up wet, in fact he was soaked. He was also going potty a lot more than normal, even though is fluid intake had not increased. Not only was he going more, when he had to go it was urgent and he would be in tears within moments. By Sunday he was sluggish, cranky, running a temperature, and you could tell by looking at his eyes he was not feeling well.

I'm sure I've said it before but Chase never really complains. He had mentioned twice that his ear was hurting so we put his ear drops (a.k.a. tickle drops) in and gave him Motrin for the fever. I was really afraid he was developing a UTI and that seemed to be the consensus of those of around us as well, especially his Daddy. Jeff called to schedule an appointment and Monday afternoon landed Doodlebug at the doctors. Good news is there was not a UTI, bad news #1 is he apparently peed all over Jeff, the wall, the toilet, and the floor while trying to get the sample! Oh I would have payed to have seen that!!! Bad news #2 is that he has another double ear infection. :o( I just don't get it. This is his fifth ear infection and the second since getting tubes. His pedi verified that the tubes are still in, but they are not draining right now so fluid has built up behind them. We started an antibiotic for 10 days and then we'll go in for a recheck. Please, please pray that this clears up. If you recall the last one took a month and four round of antibiotics to clear (and that was quick). Chase is certainly already acting better, but then again we would never have known in the past there was a problem... he has one high threshold for pain apparently! As for the potty part they said that he is producing ke.tones in his urine because of the infection and that it can causing burning which is making him go more frequently and with more urgency. I don't really know anything about it other than what I can go.ogle, but it must already be getting better because he is totally back to normal in that aspect!!! Anyway, if you got a prayer, please send it our way for Doodlebug!

**I am grateful for
1) Chase's meds are working
2) Duchess went to the doctor and got antibiotics for her sinus infection so hopefully she will be better soon!
3) Memaw is out of the hospital and got the all clear
4) it's almost the weekend (you know, my most favorite days)
5) our district is filing for a waiver so we don't have to make up the days from Hurricane Ike!