Monday, October 13, 2008

Back with a Quote of the Day

So, first of all, let me say that I can't believe it's been over 3 months since my last posting!! I guess if you're reading this, you can't believe that there's actually a new posting! What a slacker, huh? Well, much has happened in the last three months and I'm excited to share all of it thru my blog, but since I am writing this from my desk while on a break from work, let me introduce everyone back to my blog with a quick new "Quote of the Day"...

One of the exciting things that has occurred since my last blog is that M FINALLY decided he was through with pull-ups and yucky pants and is potty-trained!!!! Can I get an "AMEN?!" (Of course, whatever will I blog about now??)
This happened all-of-the-sudden one day when H was about 6 weeks old. M just decided he was ready, and never looked back. Yea!
Well, I should say that this mostly refers to daytime training, as we are still working on our night-time successes. Most mornings, M will wake up "clean and dry", but every now and then he'll be wet. This was the case the other morning when Jeff went in to wake him up. Noticing his pants, Jeff asked him "Awww, buddy....your pants are wet...did you go pee pee?" to which M emphatically replied, "No Daddy!'s DEW !!" :-)
You gotta love how the mind of a three-year-old works!!

Saturday, July 5, 2008


One of the most common questions I'm asked these days is "Who do you think H looks like?" to which I have been responding "M!"  Seriously, it's almost like giving birth to twins just three years apart!
I was taking pictures of H today while he was in his crib in an attempt to capture him smiling.  I finally got a good one and immediately had a flash back to a picture I have scrap booked of M around the same age.  I thought I'd post both on here so you can see for yourself how similar they are!  The one on the left is M at about 7 weeks, the right is H (he'll be 7 wks tomorrow).  
Cool, huh?

Friday, July 4, 2008

Back in Blogger Land

Sorry for the long break between has been pretty busy with two kids! :)
Since my last post here's a run down of what we've been up to:
  • H has been growing like a weed!!  At birth he was 7lb 3oz.  At 6 days old he was 7lb 2oz (they give babies 2 wks to get back to birth weight).  At 10 days old he was 7lb 12oz (that's 10 oz in 5 days!) and at 29 days (or one month) he was 9lb 2oz!!!  I think he might just be our chunky-monkey! :-)

    Two weeks after H's birth my in-laws came into town and spent several days with us.  We traveled with a 3 yr. old and newborn (no small task) and did a day trip to the Jersey shore with them.

  • Jeff attended his first Nascar race in Dover, DE on May 31st with his Dad.  They had a blast!  Jeff's cousin, Brian, produces one of the Radio programs for Motor Racing Network and was able to get Jeff into the pits and even in the pre-race driver's meeting.  He was only feet away from many of the drivers.  Pretty exciting for him!
  •  H attended his first service at Fellowship on Father's Day and we celebrated the day by taking Jeff and my Dad out to Lonestar Steak House.
  • M has been working on his swimming skills and loves to jump into the pool at the Y!!

  • I celebrated my 31st birthday!!  We went out to dinner with my Dad and our friends, Ben and Courtney and had a great time throwin' down some mean BBQ at Famous Dave's.  I LOVE me some Famous Dave's brisket! Mmmm...

  • Jeff, myself and "the boys" (I just love saying that!) went on our annual RV trip to the Jersey shore the last week of June.  We have a campground that we LOVE going to that's not too far from Sea Isle City, NJ.  It has a man-made lake, paddle-boats, fishing pond, playground, pool, kiddie-pool, club house, putt-putt course, supply store and ice cream shop!  And to top it off, it's only miles from the ocean!  
This was our 3rd year going and it's always a lot of fun.  We also went to the Cape May Zoo and for a walk down the Sea Isle boardwalk, got ice cream, made S'mores, enjoyed our campfires and went out to dinner a couple of nights.  I have to say though, that this year was probably the most stressful, but believe it or not it was M who was the most difficult!  We've skipped the terrible twos and have plunged head-first into the terrible threes!!    You can check out our family pics from our vacation by clicking on the "Family Photo Albums" under "Links" on the right.

  • My Mom was finally able to make the move up to DE and my parents moved into their new apartment this past Saturday!!  Yeah, they're here!!
  • Unfortunately, I returned to work this past Monday.  Although I'm very grateful for my job, my heart aches to be home with my children...
Well, that pretty much catches you up on our household for the last 6 weeks.  Hope everyone has a wonderful 4th of July celebrating the wonderful freedoms we enjoy!!

Thursday, May 29, 2008

The Birth Story of Baby H

Here he is!! :-) I've been so excited to get back on the blog and introduce him to you! I know many of you read Jeff's blog as well and got the news of H's arrival from reading that, but I also know that many of you out there would like to have more DETAILS of how the actual labor and birth went and what our birth experience was like. I, for one, am a total birth story junkie having read sooo many this pregnancy! I also wanted to write out everything as I remember while it's fresh in my memory so we will always be able to remember this very precious day when God blessed us with our second son!
For those of you that just want the nuts and bolts of what happened: 20.5 hours of labor...made it to 10cm and pain medication...still ended up with an emergency C-section. WHAT?!?:-)
Now for those who want the details, read on! I want to warn you in advance...this is VERY LONG and detailed (for our own record if for nothing else!)
As many of you know from my previous blogs, Jeff had a HUGE event that he was preparing for on Saturday, May 17th. We were having a big dinner/celebration service for all of our volunteers at Fellowship and part of this was a time of worship with Jeff leading. Thankfully, we were able to attend this no problem and I made sure to ask everyone who I spoke with that night to go home and PRAY!! (I forgot to specify that it would be better for labor to start AFTER the following morning's services--but I hear Ben did an awesome job of filling in for Jeff--Thanks Ben!! :-) Well, we got home from the event that Saturday evening and finally crawled into bed around 10:45pm. Fifteen minutes later, at 11pm, I had the first contraction. Of course, I had been contracting off and on for 3 weeks by this point so I didn't think anything of it and just tried to fall asleep. However, unlike with previous contractions, sleep didn't seem to be possible this time! After a couple of hours of trying to sleep between them and feeling very restless, I finally woke Jeff up and told him that I thought we might be gearing up for the real thing. (I probably should have let him sleep cause I don't think he ever really fell back asleep after that). I ended up going downstairs and propping up in the recliner and again tried to rest between contractions. All that night they were averaging 7 min. apart.
Around 6 AM, I went back upstairs and told Jeff we should start getting things ready in case we needed to head to the hotel soon. Yes, you read right, I said hotel, not hospital! Since we live an hour away from the hospital, the plan had always been to get a hotel room just down the street from the hospital, so that I could labor there as long as possible and not be miserable with the more serious contractions in the car. My midwife had told us that the worst thing we could do (with me attempting a VBAC this time) would be to get to the hospital and only be 1-2 cm dilated. This is basically what happened with M and of course, the longer I labored in the hospital, the more nervous everyone would get. So, the hotel seemed like a good alternative (and Jeff could rest a little easier knowing that we wouldn't wait too long at home and end up having H in the car during our hour long drive!)
I called Ronni (my midwife) and let her know what had been going on and she too thought it would be a good idea to make our way. So, we woke my Dad and told him we were going to be heading to the hotel soon and then I jumped in the shower. By this point M was awake and he was very excited when Daddy told him that Mommy and Daddy were going to the "baby hospital" and that H was going to be born! His little face lit up and he got so excited. However, he wasn't quite as thrilled to find out that he wouldn't be going with us! We told him he was going to get to go to church with Pop Pop and that he would be able to visit the "baby hospital" and H after he was born.
While I was showering and going through my checklist of things we would need, Jeff had been trying to reach Ben to break the news that he would be doing the music that morning for our services. He must have called him 20 times or so over the next hour and couldn't get an answer! (We found out later that Ben's phone had been on vibrate--he was shocked to see he had missed 20 calls and had like 5 messages! :-) We ended up heading over to the church first (about 8AM by this point) so that Jeff could get as much together for Ben as possible. He finally got thru to him (thankfully!) and told him the news. All this while the contractions had gone to about 4 min. apart and did seem to be getting a little harder. We finally hit the road and made it to the hotel with them still 4 min. apart. As SOON as we walked in the door to the hotel room, they spaced back out to every 7 min. or so. Argh! This was not what we were hoping for! I started getting worried that this would turn out to be another false alarm. However, in my gut, I really believed this to be the real thing. I called Ronni and asked if I should walk to get them going again or try to sleep since I hadn't really slept at all the night before. She thought it would be better to sleep so that's what we did. I slept, of course, in between the contractions but only for an hour. I was too restless to stay in bed any longer than that and the contractions were getting stronger.
I called Ronni again and this time she suggested the tub/shower. She basically said that if I could "manipulate" the contractions (make them space out by resting, or speed up by being active) that we weren't quite there yet and that they would still need to "coordinate". So I made a bath for myself but was very uncomfortable as it was just a standard sized tub. I tried this for about 5 min. and the contractions jumped from 7 min. to 3 min. and I was definitely starting to use more and more focus with my breathing. I decided to ditch the bath and try the shower. This is when things really started to happen! My contractions suddenly went to every 2 min. and required A LOT of focus! I would lean my head against the wall and breathe in for 4 slow counts and then breathe out for 4 slow counts. I waited for several contractions to pass before telling Jeff that we needed to make our way to the hospital. This was it!! We called Ronni who said she would meet us there.
The car ride over was NOT fun, as every bump with a contraction was horrible! I was gripping the door and just trying to breathe and relax as much as possible! Finally we pulled up to the Emergency Room entrance and Jeff secured a wheelchair. Ronni met us and took me while Jeff went to park the car. Even though we were preregistered, I still had to sit at one of the cubicles and give information like my insurance card, etc. I had one contraction while sitting there and just buried my head in the pillow that was on my lap and asked the lady behind the desk to kindly wait a moment until it passed! We finally got thru with all of that and made our way upstairs to my room. I changed into a gown and had several contractions while doing so. They were definitely getting more intense! After getting an IV in place (with a hep-lock so I wouldn't be tied to a line or pole) Ronni did the first check. I could NOT believe it when she told me I was 5 cm! I was thrilled! With M, I had gotten an epidural at 4 cm, 9 hours after the first contraction and 6 1/2 hrs later was still only at 5 cm when they decided to take him via C-section for heart decelerations and failure to progress. Now, here I was dealing well with the pain and 5 cm on my first check! Woo hoo! This was about 2pm by this point.
An hour and a half later Ronni checked me again...7 cm!! I again was shocked! All the while I had been telling myself things like "You're not there contraction at a can do this...these aren't the really bad contractions yet!" I'm totally convinced now that how you mentally tackle the contractions really can make a difference!
By 4:30 pm Ronni decided to break my water to get things moving a little more. She did, but not much seemed to change. Time seemed to drag on at this point and I was becoming more anxious for the end to be near! It was getting harder to hear/find H's heart beat with the external monitors and he was starting to have decelerations at the peak of the contractions, so they decided to put an internal monitor (attached to his head) so that they would be able to hear it constantly. This was NOT FUN as Ronni had to wait until I was in the midst of a contraction to place the wire! After this, we waited....Ronni kept telling me that I would start to feel a pressure in my bottom area which would signal that H was making his way lower in the birth canal and that pushing would be soon. I started to feel an ever so slight pressure, but things seemed to be taking longer to progress, the contractions were getting harder to "manage" and I was worried about his heart rate which you could audibly hear drop with every contraction. Ronni kept assuring us that things were still good because in-between the contractions he would have accelerations where his heart rate would speed back up. This was a good sign. More time passed with a slight increase in pressure but also an increase in his heart decelerations. I could tell everyone was getting nervous (as was's a very unsettling thing to hear your baby's heart rate drop!) We decided I should try a different position so I got on my knees and leaned over the head of the bed. I was getting VERY uncomfortable and tired at this point and told Ronni that maybe we should call for the epidural. H's heart rate got worse in this position so she had me turn back over and checked me again. (I found out later, but not at this point, that I was fully dilated during this and subsequent checks). Every "check" by the way, occurred DURING a contraction, not after or before, which to me was THE most miserable part. By this point, Ronni was trying to get his heart rate up and would tap on his head during the contractions. Basically, the rest of the story went like this: I pretty much started losing control because the pain was so bad, the OB was called and she too was checking me during contractions and trying to manipulate his head (to which I lost control and was crying and screaming and saying things like "I can't breathe!...I can't do this!") and everyone, including me, was becoming VERY concerned about H's safety. I was told to push with the next several contractions and started hearing talk of a C-section. Ronni was really encouraging me (and she told me later both she and the OB were seeing if I could get him low enough to use the vacuum to get him the rest of the way) and telling me things like "You can do this...push, push, push...down low, now PUSH, he's right there Jen...PUSH!" I did with everything I had (probably about 10 times) but he just wasn't budging! By this point, the anesthesiologist (also a women) FINALLY walked in and made the announcement that they may need to put me under with general anesthesia to which I greatly protested and the OB agreed. Ronni had me push one last time and I did, desperate to get him out, wanting to avoid the C-section, but knowing and understanding that H's safety was all that mattered at that point and I wanted him out and safe NOW! When that push didn't bring him any lower, the call was made. Jeff was by my head, and had been holding my hand and whispered his encouragement to me at that point. He had been so wonderfully supportive of my attempts at a vaginal birth and he knew how disappointed I would be. The staff quickly wheeled me into the OR (which was just at the end of the hall) and got me onto the surgical table. This is when, thankfully, I finally received the epidural and they started prepping and draping me. One of the staff members went to get Jeff and have him don the surgical "garb" and I was so relieved when he was brought in and sat beside me. Ronni too was there and holding my hand. At one point she whispered in my ear, "I'm so did sooo good! We just want him to be okay" and I reassured her that I did too!
At 7:24 pm, Our sweet baby H took his first breath in this world and proceeded to scream his little head off---the best sound EVER!! Jeff and I both were crying and I was soo relieved to hear him so strong! His apgars were 9 & 9 at birth--which is excellent!  He weighed 7lbs 3oz and was 20.5 inches long.
With M's C-section, I saw him for about 10 seconds before he was quickly whisked him away and it was 3 hours before I would hold him or see him again. However, this time, I was so thankful that he never left the room! I watched him being cleaned off and he looked so big in the warmer! I was grateful that although there were extensions for my arms to rest on, they weren't strapped down like they had been with M and quickly after wrapping H up they brought him to me and I was able to hold him and kiss him and look at him while they worked on me. Jeff and I just sat there and marveled at this beautiful little boy! It seemed so surreal to me that he was finally here and that he was OURS! His little fingernails were so long that the staff kept remarking that they were the longest they'd ever seen! He was so calm and quiet and we couldn't get enough of him! He stayed with us the whole time and was wheeled with us back to the labor room where I was able to nurse him for the first time. We were told by the OB there were several things working against us during my labor.  One was the fact that he was in a posterior, or sunny-side-up position which meant that his back was to my back and he was facing my front.  This makes it very difficult (although not impossible) for a baby to navigate thru the birth canal as their chins end up being tucked instead of extending through.  The other issue, which was compounded by his position was that he had the umbilical cord around his neck.  This was why with the peak of every contraction--as he moved lower in the birth canal and his chin tucked more--he would have the heart decelerations.  
When Ronni came to visit the next day she told me I had an "AVBAC--an "Almost VBAC" as I couldn't have gotten any closer to birthing a baby vaginally than what I did! :-)  She also said that had he been facing the right way he would have "slipped right out!"  Argh!   Little stinker!! All in all, I am so grateful to the Lord for allowing me to experience labor the way I did.  This time I KNOW that I did absolutely everything I could to have the best birth possible for my baby and for me and that there was nothing I could have done different to prevent this C-section.  I also praise God that he's safe and healthy and such a precious gift!!  Thanks to all of you who were praying for us!  God is so good!! 
We are now home, of course after spending 4 days in the hospital.  The worst part of the C-section is the recovery!  I'm feeling better every day, but have to keep reminding myself to take it easy--not something I'm good at!  We've had company the first two weeks (my mom came up the first week and my in-laws were here from last Weds. to this morning.  It's been nice having extra hands and help!!  Life seems a little crazy these days with two kids, but so far M has been wonderful with H.  We had pictures taken again by Tammy and Stephanie this morning and I will post a link to that album as soon as I get access.  Thanks again for your prayers!  We love our new little man and can't wait for everyone to meet him!  

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Quote of the Day

The other morning M had a rather yucky #2 accident in his pull-up.  Jeff was the unfortunate one who "discovered" the occurrence and ended up having to undress him and hose him down in the shower.  About this time, I get the call for help from Jeff who proceeds to describe for me how when asked "M, why did you go poopie in your pants?" he responded very matter-of-factly "Cause it was fun."  Not exactly what we want to hear from our 3 year old!   He got in trouble for this, (he lost a privilege) not because of the accident, but because of the attitude behind it.  Well, this morning Jeff and M were reading a book in our bed and all of the sudden Jeff could again sniff out an "accident".  This time when Jeff asked him, "M, WHY did you go poopie in your pants?", he was very quick to respond, "Because it's NOT fun!!"

Words of Encouragement

God has used the last 24 hours as a time of encouragement for me. I've had several of you call to encourage me and share your stories of waiting on your little ones, being overdue, etc. These have definitely helped to encourage my spirits! I've also had God speaking to my heart and mind through His word and wanted to share the following passage which just seems sooo appropriate to everything I'm feeling and going through right now. One, because it speaks to how God knows everything about me. Every thought, worry, and my future (near and far!) Secondly, I love that it speaks of how He knows everything about H! He is knitting him together even right now and loves him even more that Jeff and I do! Thank you God that you know us so well and that you have our days planned ahead of time!

Psalm 139:1-16 O Lord, you have searched me and known me! You know when I sit down and when I rise up; you discern my thoughts from afar. You search out my path and my lying down and are acquainted with all my ways. Even before a word is on my tongue, behold, O Lord, you know it altogether. You hem me in, behind and before, and lay your hand upon me. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is high; I cannot attain it.
Where shall I go from your Spirit? Or where shall I flee from your presence? If I ascend to heaven, you are there! If I make my bed in Sheol, you are there! If I take the wings of the morning and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, even there your hand shall lead me,and your right hand shall hold me. If I say, “Surely the darkness shall cover me,and the light about me be night,” even the darkness is not dark to you; the night is bright as the day, for darkness is as light with you.
For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother's womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.
Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008


Well, just returned from my midwife appt a little while ago. I'm bummed since she was NOT able to do the "sweep" like we were hoping for. Baby H is in good position (low and at "0 station"), but he's just not quite ready to come yet! So, we continue to wait and pray and hope and dream of holding him very soon! I don't go back to see Ronni until next Weds. but she (and we!) are hopeful that I will deliver before then!
Physically, I'm feeling pretty good. For me, this has been a little mentally taxing, though. I keep getting myself psyched up to go and then I have to change gears again. Jeff made a good point on the way back from the appointment saying that hopefully all of this is going to lead up to a quicker/easier labor and delivery! I'm so thankful I had him with me to try and cheer me up. Although, I have to say he was just a bit too giddy for me! :-) I think he was relieved that it WASN'T time for him to "gear up" just yet!
Thank you all so much for your prayers for us. I know that God is ultimately and completely in control!!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

The Smallest Details

We had another "teaser" day this past Saturday with me contracting all day long (I REALLY hope this all helps to shorten the real thing!). At one point they were every THREE minutes and I was pretty hopeful. Of course, this was while I was sweeping/mopping my kitchen floor, but still!!
I had a hard time sleeping last night. I woke up at 3AM and no matter what position I tried, felt short of breath. I finally propped up on 2 pillows and laid there wide awake for what seemed like forever! This is like waiting for one big party and you don't know when it's going to happen!
I go for my next appointment with my midwife tomorrow and she told me last week that if I'm still around, she will try to "sweep my membranes". I leave it for all of you to Google the meaning of that if you don't know, instead of providing details here! :-) Suffice it to say that if she can do this, and if it's successful, there's a good chance that we could be heading to the hospital tomorrow night!
This is also a very busy week at work for Jeff with a HUGE VIP event taking place on Saturday and rehearsals for him tomorrow night, so not quite sure how all of that will work out and this is definitely putting more stress on him. I'm so glad that God has the very smallest details of our lives in His hands! It's times like these that I finally get the knock on the head from Him that reminds me that I really have NO control over ANYTHING and that all He requires of me is to just lay everything at His feet and TRUST that He knows what's best for all of us! :-)
Keep your prayers coming as we are in the final stretch! (No pun intended! HA!) Hopefully my next post on here will include pictures of our new little man!

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Quote of the Day

Of course we might be partial, but M is such a funny kid!  He is always saying stuff or doing stuff that makes us laugh.  I always say that I need to write these funny quotes down so that I can remember them later, but usually forget.  Today it occurred to me that I could start a "Quote of the Day" list on my blog!  That way, I can jot them down as they happen for our amusement as well as yours and have them to look back on in the future.
So, here's one from today (imagine it with all of the enthusiasm and gusto that only a 3 year old could put into it):
"Mommy, I told Miss Liz (his preschool teacher) that she can come over to our house and eat Macaroni and Cheese!!"
Random, I know, but I couldn't stop laughing! :-)  I can't wait to hear what Miss Liz thought!
I'd love to hear some funny or memorable quotes from your kids!

Waiting Game...

Well, I'm still "great" with child although we had a tease last Friday and were convinced he was coming that night! I had contractions all day, starting with my ride into work. By the time I got off, they were still coming fairly regularly, although not getting any stronger. Jeff and I had planned one last date night before this baby comes (one of the GREAT benefits of having Pop-Pop living with us!!) so we headed out to dinner and to see a movie. We ended up eating at an Indian Restaurant, (something we've enjoyed since our honeymoon in London) and I was remarking about how I hoped I wouldn't be experiencing this meal again later!! What was I thinking eating Indian anyway??
Well, all throughout our dinner I was letting Jeff know when I would have a contraction. At that point they were 4 minutes apart and starting to feel stronger. We were so excited! We decided at that point that it would be a good idea to skip the movie and go home and go to bed. We know from experience how hard it is to labor in the middle of the night and not get any sleep! With M, my labor started at 9:45 PM and he wasn't born until 1:26PM the next day.
So, we threw all of our "labor" bags in the car and went to bed....and woke up the next morning!! Argh! What a tease!! :-) Although I'm very happy my body seems to be gearing up, I'm VERY anxious to get this show on the road! Haven't had much to get too excited about since then, so it's still a waiting game. God's in control and I know he'll come at just the right time! But it's soooo hard to wait! :-)

Thursday, May 1, 2008

News Gator

Updated (1/28/10):
While NewsGator was good for a's no longer the tool I use to organize all of the blogs I read.
If you haven't already, check out Google Reader!  It's free if you have a Google account (also free) and A-mazing!

Original Post:
Recently our Lead Pastor, John Cremeans blogged about a cool online tool for anyone who, like me, has several blogs that they like to follow on a regular basis.  It's called NewsGator ( and it's AWESOME!! Using NewsGator, you can list all of the blogs that you like to follow and when you sign in, it will actually tell you if any of your blogs have new posts!  If they do, you can click on it and read it right there!  This is such a time saver and you don't waste your time going to blogs that haven't changed any since the last time you visited. Neat, huh?  I just made an account for myself the other day (it's free) and I LOVE it!
Just thought I'd share the joy!  Happy blogging!

Wednesday, April 30, 2008


Today was my appointment with my midwife and just wanted to give everyone an update.  I've been having contractions (on and off) but pretty regular since this past Saturday.  At one point on Saturday they were every 5 min. and this lasted for about 45 min.  Then, on Sunday they seemed less frequent, Monday during dinner I had another 1/2 hour or so at regular intervals and then yesterday, not much. So it seems to be an every other day kind of thing for me.  Of course, I know that this is all just "warm up" for the big event, but I am grateful to be contracting so early! Hopefully (Lord willing) this will help to make my true labor shorter! HA!
Anyway, Ronni did check me today and said that part (the first part) of my cervix is 1 cm, but not the whole cervix.  She actually whipped out some playdoh and made a fake cervix out of it to demonstrate! Jeff's comment afterward was, "I've seen too much...." :-))  
Of course, being only 1cm (sort of) is not much, but in my's something!!  To me, it means I'm not imagining things and we're starting to gear up!  Yea!  
I'll officially be 38 weeks on Friday (in 2 days), but as a comparison, I had M at 39wks, 1 day.  I also don't remember having so many "practice" contractions before going into labor with him.  Sooooooo, it may be anytime now!
Keep us in your prayers! 

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Big News!

No, H hasn't arrived quite yet, but I do have other, exciting news to share with all of you.  For some time now my parents have been praying that God would open the doors that would allow them to move up to this area.  My Dad is originally from N.Jersey and my Mom is a Baltimore native.  They've lived in Florida most of their marriage and have spent the last 6 years in North Carolina.  They, of course, like any good Nana and PopPop have longed to be closer to their grandchildren and have been looking for job opportunities in the area.
Well, two weeks ago we learned of an opportunity for my Dad which he applied for and accepted which means they will be moving to the area!!  Praise God!  I'm so excited to have family close by again especially now that we have children and I know my parents are thrilled.
My Mom is currently researching nursing positions in the area as well.  
The biggest short term effect of all of this for Jeff and I is the fact that Dad has moved in with us temporarily.  He started his new job today, while my Mom still has to work out 30 days notice with her current employer AND the lease on their current apartment doesn't expire until mid-June.  Of course, they didn't want to have to pay for two places at the same time, so we offered to have Dad stay with us!
Boy are we about to have a full house! :-)
Please continue to be in prayer for all of us (especially for my Mom,  who is now by herself until the end of June).
Lots of exciting things happening around here!

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Sick Day

For those of you that follow my hubby's blog, you know that Jeff has been feeling under the weather lately.  M, too, ran a fever a couple of weeks ago and now has a cough.  For myself, I've had a sore throat and what I thought were allergy symptoms, but now I'm not so sure.  All of my head congestion has moved to my chest, and I've been coughing so bad the last couple of days that it hurts to talk and my voice is just about gone.  YUCK!!
So, with all of my symptoms coming to a head today and just generally feeling physically run down, I took the day off and am going to try to rehydrate, rest and sanitize EVERYTHING!! :-)
Please be praying for the health of our family.  Of course I feel like this baby could come any day now and I certainly want to feel better before going into labor AND definitely want to bring him home to the healthiest home possible!  Thank goodness the weather has been pretty pleasant here lately and we've been able to open the windows and get some fresh air in the house.
We appreciate all of your prayers for us!  Now, it's on to a large glass of O.J.!

Friday, April 18, 2008

Friday Night Nesting

As I type this Jeff is on his way to watch the Phillies game with some friends and believe it or not, my "nesting" is so bad, that I chose to stay home on a Friday night to CLEAN instead of go to the game!  HA!  So, in order to keep myself on track (and to ensure, hopefully, that I don't spend the night on BLOGS) I am going to write down my goals for the night:
(By the way M stayed home with Mommy too and is happily watching Disney's "CARS" movie for the upteenth time!)
  • Finally pack our bags for the hospital!
  • Finish washing, folding and putting away the washcloths and hooded towels I dug out of boxes yesterday
  • Wash and then sterilize all of the old bottles, pacifiers and "pump" parts that I also found in boxes
  • Put a change of clothes in the car (just in case)
  • Clean the kitchen
  • Give M a bath and put him to bed
  • Sweep the dog hair (the bane of my existence) off of the floors!!
  • And for good measure...If I have ANY time left, clean the fish tank! 
Doesn't this sound like an exciting Friday night?!   
Now, too bad I wasted 20 minutes looking for a picture to go with this blog...

It's now 10:00 and I've completed NONE of my tasks for the night! (*Sigh*)  Jeff, who's been suffering from weird cases of dizziness all week called me from the game not long after I signed off to ask me to come and pick him up. (You know he's not feeling well if I have to take him from a Phillies game!!)  Please pray for him, he's really been struggling to feel well lately. 
Better luck tomorrow, I hope...

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Luminosity Photography

Updated: Sorry to say this link no longer works!  So bummed.  But seriously, check out their site HERE

Original Post:
No, that's not MY belly, but I did want to post a link to the slideshow of the AWESOME photos we had taken this past Tuesday night. Stephanie and Tammy did such a fantastic job, and I think you'll agree they definitely have a gift! We had such a fun time taking them and I'm thrilled to be able to share them with all of you! We are counting down the days till we can hold our precious new little boy!
Here's the link:
Sorry it's so long, but this will take you directly to our slideshow. The pictures scroll thru pretty fast; if you want to view them slower just pause the show (bottom right) and then you'll be able to scroll thru one at a time. Would love to get some feedback of what you think!
Hope you enjoy!

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Almost There!

The countdown is definitely in full swing at this point!  I hit the 35 week mark on Friday, and as you can see, I'm running out of room!  I'm feeling tired a little easier these days and forget about tying my shoes or painting my toenails!! HA!
Actually I'm excited to be using a gift certificate that Jeff treated me to for a spa package this coming Monday!  I'm having some maternity photos taken by some wonderful friends of mine, Stephanie L. and Tammy L. on Tuesday--you can check out their site here:   
They do awesome work!  Soooo, Monday night I'm treating myself to a haircut, a manicure and a pedicure.  At least my hair and nails will look good!! :-)  I'll have to post a link to the photo album once I have access to it.  Please continue to pray with us for continued health for both myself and baby H.  We are so anxious to meet him!!  Pray also for the transition for M.  He is excited to meet his baby brother, and we talk often of how things are going to be once he's here, but I'm sure his arrival will bring some new challenges for us all!  
Now, it's on to packing our bags!!

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Answered Prayers

A huge CONGRATULATIONS to Phil and Jenna Bachetti on the arrival of their new BABY GIRL!! Phil and Jenna (and of course Grandparents Ray and Linda) have ferverantly been praying that God would bless them with a baby girl this time and HE has answered their prayers! Thank you God for taking care of this little girl and for blessing this family with her birth. Please take care of Jenna now as she recovers and I pray that Fellowship would shower them with blessings and support!!

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Weekly Highlights

Ok, so I know I've been a total slacker this past week with the blogging...something that totally annoys me as well!  It's been a busy week with many events that I could have been blogging about, but as you already know, have neglected to do until longer!!  I have made a new vow to myself that from this point on:  I WILL blog even if I don't have pictures to go with my "stories", I WILL blog about useless, random musings that happen to only be tiny insights into my life, and I WILL sometimes combine the ENTIRE events of the week into one posting instead of feeling guilty for not posting for each one separately!!!  There, now I feel better.
Sooooo, to kick off my new resolutions, let me bring you up to date on some of the highlights of THIS week.  Sorry, no pictures as of yet, but I WILL try to post some later!
  • Last Saturday (March 29th) the WONDERFUL ladies of Fellowship held a baby shower for our VERY soon to arrive little man, H.  It was a great time, and I am so thankful to Kathleen and Courtney for putting this together for us.  You guys rock!  I never really expected to have a shower for our second, so I've been incredibly thankful and humbled that you all wanted to do this for us!  We are so blessed by Fellowship and all of our friends!
  • This shower also inspired me to FINALLY get out all of the bins I've had stored in the basement with all of M's infant clothing.  It was fun to unpack and wash all of his little outfits and relive the memories of when he was that small.  It also makes H's pending arrival seem that much more REAL!  I had fun this week getting everything clean and put away in his closet.
  • The nursery is really starting to come together!  This is also very exciting to me as I am definitely in my "nesting" period and want everything to be just right before his arrival.  This week we bought the rug for his room (we have all wood floors in the bedrooms) and just today bought the changing table and put it together.  Thanks SOOOO much Nana and Grandma for helping us with this!  It's beautiful!  Next week we are planning a yard sale and we hope to use whatever we make from that to purchase a new glider/ottoman.  So exciting!
  • This past Wednesday two very cool things happened.  The first was my 34 week visit with my midwife, Ronnie.  She is wonderful and makes me feel so at ease and confident about my attempt at a VBAC.  For any of you guys reading who don't want the details of what that means, you might want to skip to the next bullet point NOW!  Of course, VBAC stands for Vaginal Birth After Cesarean, as M ended up a "C" after 16 hours of labor, me being stuck at 5 cm, and his continual heart decelerations.  I was very disappointed of course after having a wonderful, uncomplicated pregnancy and knew that I would want to attempt natural birth again with our next.  Well, this has NOT been an easy thing to get support for!!  Most OB/GYNs and hospitals discourage it or are not very supportive (from what I've found) with the idea of a VBAC.  Ronnie is the fourth provider I've seen during this pregnancy and I just started with her at 28 weeks!  It took me that long to find a provider AND a hospital that would be supportive in this endeavor!!  Please be praying with me/us for a healthy labor and delivery and above all a healthy little boy!  The second cool thing happened Weds. night.  I had a staff meeting for my job that evening at 5:00 which ended up being another surprise baby shower for myself and another coworker who's expecting her second as well!  I was soooo surprised!  We had a great time and we each received $100 worth of gift cards for the babies!  How cool is that?!
  • That brings us to today.  M started running a fever this morning and again this evening so I probably will be keeping him home from church tomorrow.  I'm disapointed to miss being able to be in the audience tomorrow for a couple of reasons.  God recently led us to a new sound engineer (who rocks!)  and I was looking forward to "hearing" what the music was going to sound like tomorrow from OFF the stage!  The band is also doing a new favorite song "Break Free" which is totally rockin' (M requests it now EVERY time we get in the car) and I was looking forward to hearing it for the first time at Fellowship.  I pray that in all these things that God will receive ALL of the glory!  
For now, I am sooo tired,  having worked this morning for four hours, and I am definitely ready for some "down time" with Jeff (who was wonderful enough to give our little boy his bath and put him to bed!)  Now it's onto some popcorn, chillin' and watching WHATEVER!  Well, that's it for all of my updates!  Hope you all have a wonderful week and a blessed Sunday!!  

Friday, March 28, 2008

John & Kate + 8

I LOVE this show! John & Kate Gosslin are the amazing parents of 2 sets of multiples: Twin 7 year old daughters and 3 year old sextuplets! Can you imagine?? Well, they are such a neat family to watch--they open their home and their lives for the rest of us to take peeks at how they do it through their show "John & Kate + 8". You can check out their website here:
They also take time to travel around the country and often do speaking engagements in local churches. This Sunday they will be in Avondale, PA at Elk Creek Church (check out my link for Pastor Mike Silliman's blog!) and I have two tickets for it!! Unfortunately, I forgot that I will be singing this Sunday at our own church and won't be able to attend. If anyone would like to go to this (or know any other BIG Fans of the show) let me know as soon as possible! You can comment here or email me your interest. I'm sure you'll be blessed by their testimony!

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Lessons From A Three Year Old

Last week M was able to paticipate in 3 seperate Easter Egg hunts. (At his preschool, in our neighborhood and then at a friend's house on Easter Sunday).
The first to take place this year was at his preschool which is actually housed in a church.   It was the church who put on the hunt and M was sooooo excited to participate.  I was too, until I heard the age breakdown they would be using.  You see...they decided to split the hunt into 2 different age groups--2 1/2 and under and then 2 1/2 and up.  What this meant for my newly turned 3 year old was that he was at a serious age disadvantage!!  He was up against 9 and 10 yr olds and this was really the first hunt that I think he  could even comprehend what he was supposed to do!  
Needless to say, he didn't get many eggs (4 total and two of them just had pieces of paper with a # on it) and meanwhile I'm hearing all of the other kids bragging "look, I got 10"..."Oooo, well I got 14!" and things like this.  So, in my human/mother nature...I was pretty miffed about the whole thing!  Afterwards, M was looking at his eggs (and realizing that a couple of them had candy in them) when up walks a little girl from his class named Claire.  Now Claire and her brother had just walked in, which meant that they had missed the whole hunt and didn't have any eggs.  I don't know why, but I felt prompted to ask M if he would like to share with her. Without a second thought he reached in and grabbed an egg for her and then proceded to try and give ALL of his eggs away!  Wow!  What a lesson for mommy!  Here he was, excited to share whatever he had, and all I could think about was how unfair things had been for him!  I was humbled and so proud of his sharing spirit!  How much more do I need to be like that with all of the "things" God has blessed me with?  Not just material possesions, but my faith, forgiveness, peace, true joy!!  Sometimes, I just want to live in my bubble and focus only on what God can do for me, instead of what God wants to do with me or through me!  God doesn't want me to hold on too tight to all that I have, but rather look for opportunities to give!!  What a cool thing that God can use our kids to teach us lessons!

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Love This Church!

Check out the AWESOME new look of Fellowship! This past Sunday was the "rollout" date for the new lights and design and I'm so pumped! Of course, these are just material things, but it's one more step for Fellowship, and it's one more step in our process of "Redefining Church in the Deleware Valley"! Sunday's service was amazing with God receiving all of the glory! I'm so grateful to be serving in such an awesome ministry and am really looking forward to what God will do this Easter Sunday!

Monday, March 17, 2008

31 week Pics

Well, here it first online belly shot! This is from today (31weeks,3 days). Only 8 1/2 weeks left until our second little man is due. Please be praying with us for a safe, speedy and successful--as natural as possible--birth! I'll try to keep the belly shots coming (no matter how big I get!) :-)

Party Time!

Saturday was M's birthday party and it was so much fun!  We had great weather and a wonderful time!  The kids all LOVED the Moonbounce and we were sooooo glad that we had it there. (My coworker was kind enough to lend it to us for the occasion...thanks Laura!!) We also had the special treat of being able to offer horse rides courtesy of the Berkeyheisers--how cool is that??--thanks guys!! :-) I think we ended up with about 17 kids which was wonderful and M had a blast!  Thanks to everyone who came out to celebrate him with us!  I'm gonna try to add a slideshow of the party pictures so keep checking back!  

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Another Day To Celebrate

Today my wonderful husband turns 34!  Not much time to post tonight, but wanted to get that out there and give everyone the opportunity to leave some birthdays comments for the birthday boy!!   Love ya honey!!

Monday, March 10, 2008

Happy Six Years!!

Yesterday, March 9th, Jeff and I celebrated our 6th wedding anniversary!  I don't think either of us could have imagined how blessed and full our lives would be in such a short time!  We both have wonderful jobs, Jeff is part of an AWESOME, KICKIN' Church and staff and we both are so thankful that God led us to ministry at Fellowship! You can check out our church here:  We have a wonderful little boy and another due soon, a great home, rich friendships, the love of our Creator and most of all a deeper, more wonderful love for each other than we could have dreamed possible! Last night we took the time to describe the top 10 things that we love about each other and it was a neat thing to are some of my favorite things about Jeff:
  • His unshakable faith and life as a Christ follower.  Without this, our life and the fullness we experience daily would not be possible.
  • His loyalty as a friend.  Not just to me, but to many all over the US.  He has such a tender heart for his friends.
  • He is SUCH a wonderful Daddy!  He is so encouraging to M and loves his little boy!  In many ways, he balances me out and it's wonderful to be on the same page in the way that we are choosing to raise our children.  I can't wait to see him with two boys!
  • He is so wonderful for putting up with me and all of my "stuff"!!  He is so patient with me and my life is so rich having him as my very best friend!
  • He is so gifted and talented and I love that we both share such a passion for music and for praise!  He has grown so much in this area since coming to Fellowship (all glory to God!) and I can't wait to see what the future holds for him in this area!
  • He is so much fun to be around!!  Always, always being silly or making me/others laugh.  I love his sense of humor and his zest for life!
  • He is such a romantic...even more so than me, I have to admit!  He is wonderfully thoughtful in this area and I learn so much from him!
God, thank you for my wonderful husband and for the years you've blessed us with.  You are to be praised for all that you have brought us through and for what you are molding us/shaping us into.  May we always be used by you, as individuals and as a couple, to show others your perfect love and may we strive to live out this perfect love in our lives as well!

Friday, March 7, 2008

Happy 3rd Birthday M!!

Today, March 7th, our sweet little man has turned 3 years old!!!  We are still in awe of what a precious gift he is from the Lord and praise God for the privilege it is to be his parents.  To celebrate this occasion I thought I would bullet some of the things we love most about M:
  • He's such an entertainer!  Two weeks ago at Sunday School, he got up with his "air guitar" and announced "Okay ev'ry buddy...I gonna lead music...We gonna sing about Jesus" and proceeded to sing "Santa Clause is coming to town!" at the top of his lungs...(we still have some work to do, I know)
  • He has such a tender heart.  This little boy who doesn't stop for ANYTHING will immediately come to our aid if hurt or expressing sadness of any kind...." ok mommy??"
  • He is super, super smart! Now I know every parent thinks this, and I don't think he's quite ready for the Mensa High-IQ club yet...but he truly amazes us!  This morning he was teaching ME about the planets in our solar system!!  I always ask him, "Sweetie, who made you so smart??"  To which he responds with a grin, "God and Jesus!" :-)
  • He loves to give hugs and kisses.  I know this won't always be the case so I'm soaking it all up now and don't even want to imagine the day when this won't be the case!
  • He is becoming more independent everyday!  He can brush his own teeth and dress/undress himself.  Of course, this can sometimes lead to other issues (just see my previous blog) but it really frees up our hands and gives him such a sense of accomplishment.  I know this will also make a big difference when Hudson arrives. 
  • He loves school and learning and seems to make friends easily.
  • He loves to read and spell out the letters in words.  I know it won't be long before he's reading like a champ!
  • He can't wait to be a big brother!  He'll talk to my belly and say things like "Hi baby, I'm your big brother!" and "I can't wait to meet you!" and gives my belly kisses.  I'm glad he's gonna have a brother to grow up with!
  • He's such a happy kid!  Granted, he has his moments like everybody else, but really is such a joy and makes us laugh all the time.
God, thanks for our sweet boy.  Thanks for keeping him safe and healthy and for teaching us so much about ourselves in our daily calling to parent him and shepherd his little heart!  Thanks for using days like today to remind us of how much you've blessed us!

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Surprise Load

I love to watch American Idol!  Rarely, however, am I through with M's bedtime rituals to sit in front of the TV by 8:00 to watch it live, so of course, we DVR it (or digitally record it) with our cable box.  This works out great, because every now and then I get the urge to do a little laundry between putting M to bed and "relaxing" for the rest of the evening.
The other night was no exception.  I knew that I was running low on clean pants for M and the uniform I needed for work the next morning was in the hamper.  So, I grabbed his hamper and a few of my things and threw them in.  
Finally, onto my show!  Well, I also sometimes have the very bad habit of becoming soooo tired while "relaxing" to A.I., that by the time it's over (usually 10:00 or so by now) I don't want to get up so I'll end up watching something else we have "saved" on our box, or the news...whatever. 
 The other night was also no exception to this habit.  Needless to say, somewhere around 11:00, I finally drug myself off of the couch and headed upstairs to change the clothes to the dryer, wash my face and thankfully sink into my warm bed. 
Very groggy at this point, I walk to the laundry room and squint as I turn on the light and open the washing machine lid.......
Now for those of you with small children, or for those who've ever had one of your child's diapers get "too full" with'll understand what I'm about to describe next.  What I saw when I opened the wash was nothing less than an entire tub and load of clothes COVERED in slimy, gooey, "nuggets" of diaper crystals.  The kind that are supposed to stay tucked away in the fabric of the diaper and absorb the moisture.  Yeah...those...
Well, in my haste to throw the laundry in and sit down to my show I had neglected to sort through M's clothes which by now, it was clear to me, had contained a USED diaper!!
So, here I am, EXHAUSTED, just wanting to go to bed, but I can't because the uniform I need for the next morning has Gooey Diaper nuggets stuck all over it!  
It took about 45 min. and  a quick search of Google to come up with a plan:
I basically shook off every single piece of clothing I had just washed back into the washing machine (no small feat when you're washing an ENTIRE load of little toddler clothes!) and threw them into a basket until all that was left was a tub bottom covered in goo.  Then I wet a wash cloth and scraped it all out.  Then I threw in a completely different load (with my uniform included of course) on HOT with two BIG scoops of OxyClean (a Google suggestion) and went to bed praying my efforts would work.  Well, it did the trick!  On one of my several nightly trips to the bathroom I opened the wash to discover nothing but clean clothes and joyfully changed them to the dryer.
Moral to the story....
Just because your toddler can dress himself or put on his own PJ's...doesn't mean that he will think it necessary to take the used Pull-Up out of his pants BEFORE tossing them into his hamper!!:-)
One lesson painfully learned and now passed on to you!
Life is good :-)))

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Monster JAM!!

This picture is a couple of weeks old, but I wanted to share our "Monster Jam" experience. M is totally into watching the big trucks on TV with Daddy and was sooooo excited to find out that we were going to go see them live in Philly. Daddy made sure we had the ear plugs, we invited some of our other friends with small boys and off we went! Needless to say, even with lots of prep of reminding M how loud the trucks were going to be (he was telling everyone "yeah, they goin' to be REALLY loud!) this picture says it all. Total sensory overload!! :-) The loud noise, the smell, the flashing lights...the heights!! it was all a little too much for him and he spent the first 3o min. not too sure about the experience. We had a hard time getting his earplugs to stay in and eventually we put the hood of his jacket up to help hold them in. After that, he wouldn't let us take it off! I was SWEATING with him sitting in my lap with his big, winter coat on, but he would NOT let it go! :-) So funny... Eventually, believe it or not, he FELL ASLEEP! (As you can see below). Too bad since he missed the most exciting parts! Better luck next time I guess :-)

Finally in Blogger Land!!

So....drum roll first blog, EVER! (Jeff is definitely the veteran blogger!) I think maybe I've posted a comment here or there, but forever I have wanted to start our own family blog! And now, here it is! With this I hope that Jeff and I can keep all of you posted on all of the cool, not so cool, quirky, funny, hectic, stressful, wonderful things that go on in the Ream household! Keep checking in for updates :-)