The Best of Times, The Worst of Times

With just over three weeks until I give birth to my precious baby boy, I am starting to think less about pregnancy and more what life is going to look like.

However, tonight, I was thinking of the things I will miss and not miss about being pregnant.  May I share such a list with you.

Things I will miss….
1.  Feeling my sweet little boy kicking around inside of my belly
2.  Daydreaming about what Luke will be like
3.  My kids asking me everyday, “Can I hit baby Luke?”  (When I say no, they ask to kiss him.  Cute!)
4.  Not worrying about what I eat (I like to think pregnancy is God’s way of letting women indulge without guilt….I know some of you would disagree)
5.  Sleeping (mostly) through the night
6.  The accommodations made for pregnant women
7.   Having an excuse to not do the things I do not want to do

Things I will not miss….
1. Being HUGE!  (I get huge even when I eat well, so no lectures, please)
2.  Going to the restroom every 2.7 seconds
3.  Not being able to do the things I want to do (wrestle with my kids, having energy to show hospitality, walk up stairs without being winded, etc)
4.  Feeling like a beached whale everytime I turn over in bed
5.  Waddling instead of walking
6.  Maternity clothes
7.  Sore muscles from doing nothing
8.  The inability to bend over
9.  Feeling like my legs are getting no circulation

I am sure there are more, but those are what comes to mind!!

We want to have one more child after this, so I apologize, in advance, that you will have to endure this adventure with me again one day.  Probably in about 2 years.  Give or take (well, mostly just give).

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Pictures!!

I have been so slack about posting pictures, but I am feeling particularly motivated this afternoon!  My sweet children are sleeping.  I took all the Christmas decor down.  We are stuck at home because of the massive amount of snow (though I am really craving Chinese food, so I may venture out later!).

Coming downstairs (post bath) on Christmas Eve…..
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Jammies!!
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Reading the Christmas story (thank you, Jesus, for your precious life!!)
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Christmas Day
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A very pregnant me and Chloe making Jesus’ birthday cake
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Birthday party for Jesus!
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Chloe spent the day doing our hair and make-up
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Caleb spent the day playing with his castle
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It was a beautiful, white Christmas
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And some pictures a few days before Christmas that are just cute…..
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Merry Christmas!!

It has been a very Merry Christmas at the Williams home.  I will try to post pictures later, if I get motivated!

Our festivities began last night.  While the kids took baths, the Jammie Elf stopped by for a visit and dropped off pajamas for the kids.  I actually was surprised how excited they got about their new jammies.  We put on the jammies, and Brett read the Christmas story to all of us.  It was at that point that I realized (at 8 months pregnant) that I could have been giving birth in a stinky, hot stable without an epidural, after having traveled all day.  Life is good.

After the story, we put the kids to bed.  Chloe went to bed pretty easily.  She was excited Santa was coming, but I do not think she had much of a grasp of it.  Caleb was SO excited.  He kept asking tons of questions….”why does Santa land on the roof?”….”where is his wife? the elves?”  We were unsure what our stance on Santa was.  We decided to do Santa, but we do not make a huge deal of it.  Therefore, Christmas is still magical and make-believe, but Christ is the focus of our celebration.
I think Caleb had trouble sleeping last night.  Brett and I thought back to how awesome Christmas Eve was as a kid.  I love the circle of life…..enjoying Christmas as a kid (my parents gave us awesome Christmases!) and now enjoying Christmas with my kids.  So fun.
Once the kids were safely asleep, Santa visited.  And Mrs. Claus cleaned up (pictures are forever, you know! LOL!).

Christmas Day started off perfectly, as we woke up to lots and lots and lots of snow.  A white Christmas…perfection!!

Caleb was the first awake.  We made him wait about 15 minutes for Chloe to wake up.

They came down the stairs, and the excitement ensued.
Caleb had actually found his big gift (a knight, horse, and princess, castle handed down from my nephew) a few days ago.  We had convinced him he was not getting it (just to save Christmas….Lord, forgive my white lies), though, so he was beside himself when he discovered it was for him.  He has declared no less than 10 times today, “THIS IS AWESOME!” and “I love my Christmas!”  To say he loves his castle is an understatement.

Chloe’s big gift was a vanity with make-up and hair stuff.  We bought her pretend make-up, but Caleb really wanted to buy her real make-up.  I let her play with the real stuff, but it will not go in her room!  She LOVES it.  All day, she has been doing my and Brett’s hair, as well as her baby doll’s hair.  She also has a face covered in make-up!

Those were the highlights, but here are the other gifts they received (this is for my own benefit) from family and us:

Caleb:
– Duplo Legos with people to go with it
– Tonka bulldozer and dump truck
– Trio building set
– Star Wars Lego’s shirt (he really wanted Star Wars Lego’s, so this was the next best thing….and no choking hazard for new baby)
– Bubble bath, boxer shorts,
– dinosaur puppets
-$30 Toys R Us gift card
– $50 savings bond
– $20 cash

Chloe:
– lots of make-up
– Little People set with extra Little People
– more jammies
– tights
– $30 Toys R Us gift card
– $50 savings bond
– $20 cash
(The vanity was her big gift.  Caleb’s big gift was free, so that’s why it appears he got more.)

As you probably know, receiving gifts is my love language.  So Christmas is still the best day, to me!!  I am worse than a child.  Brett is so sweet….even though gifts is probably his last love language, he works so hard to get me perfect gifts!!  I appreciate him so much because he is just so thoughtful.
Here is what he got me this year:
– a gift card to Social Suppers (this is awesome!! I will be able to get prepared meals, so when Luke arrives, I will have meals stocked in the freezer!)
– Purity face cleanser and Hope in a Jar moisturizer from Sephora (I have not used it, but I read about it on my friend Claire’s blog and have wanted it!! He got the HUGE container of face wash, so I am set for a long time! YAY)
– a diaper bag (because we all know I have a bag obsession!)
– matching plastic cups (I really wanted these but have been unable to find ones I like.  Basically, I only ever drink out of plastic cups, but all of ours were mismatched and old!  I wanted a matching set, and he found some….and they’re perfect!!)

I feel so loved!!  The thoughtfulness and effort means about as much as the gifts themselves!  I love my husband.
I also got a watch from Brett’s grandparents.  And collectively, we got $150 from his parents and other grandparents.

My sister totally surprised me this Christmas!!  She is SOOO sweet.  She sent me a pair of CUTE earrings from etsy, as well as some really awesome baby stuff….high end burp cloths, wash cloths, and swaddlers.  I have expensive taste but actually have to pay bills, so nice baby items are the best!!!  Plus, she sent me a Ju-Ju-Be pouch.  It attaches to diaper bags, strollers, etc and is way cute.  I thought she was buying stuff for other people (she sent me emails asking which prints I liked since she was buying stuff for her “friend and cousin” (which, she did buy stuff for them, too)….so I was shocked to get it all in the mail!).

My friend, Dana, also gave me such a sweet gift….a necklace engraved with all of my kids’ names.  She even included Luke.  When I saw it, I burst into happy tears.  Seeing his name made his upcoming birth such a reality, which is SO exciting!!

For Brett, he got an iPhone last month, so he just got a few small things…..2 FSU sweatshirts and a book.  And a nice set of pens from his grandparents.  He does not care about presents, but he does LOVE his iPhone.  I was not sure if it was worth the money.  It has, indeed, been worth every penny.

Because presents are the least important part of Christmas (though, actually, they really are important to me, as sad as that it)…..we actually did celebrate the birth of Christ.  We made a tres leche cake and sang Happy Birthday to Jesus!!  So fun!!  Christ is the most important part of our lives on a daily basis, so I do not worry that Christmas is full of cookies, presents, and overall self-indulgence.  My kids are so awesome and thankful (for their age), so I like to spoil them on Christmas!!

We have been playing all day!!  And it is SO adorable seeing my kids play with all their new stuff.  They really do appreciate it all.  So, family and friends, thank you for making our holidays so special.

Unfortunately, we’re not able to travel this year, since I am having Luke in just a few weeks.  So we were unable to see family.  That’s a bummer, but since I am so miserably huge, it was nice to relax at home!!  We always stay home on Christmas Day, anyway, but usually we see family at some point.

Hope your Christmas was merry and bright!!!!!!

Much love to you all……

Life. Life. Life.

A conversation in the car this evening went like this:
Caleb: You are poo.
Chloe: Mommy, Caleb said ‘poo’.
Brett: Let’s not talk about poo.  It’s yucky.
Caleb: It’s not yucky. You are poo.
Me: Caleb, please use nice words.
Caleb: I am using nice words.  I am talking about Tigger and Pooh.

(Nice cover up.  We laughed and laughed!)

For about the last week, my kids have been putting their arms in their shirt (taking them out of the sleeves) and saying, “I lost my arm in China.  I lost my arm in China.”  I am not sure where they got this from, but it is so funny.  Brett sometimes pretends to call China, which makes Caleb and Chloe laugh hysterically!  Fortunately, their arms always come back!

Christmas, as you may have noticed, is upon us.  I am SO excited about it.  Both of my kids are so excited.  Caleb, in particular, cannot wait!  He asks everyday when I am going to put the presents out.  Tonight, he asked where I am hiding them.  He thinks they’re in the food closet (aka pantry) because I put one of Brett’s presents in there for a few days (before moving it to my real hiding spot in the basement).
A few days ago, Caleb asked Brett if he could pick out presents for Chloe and me.  How precious is he!!  Yesterday, he told me that he was going to get me make-up (his idea).  Then, after they went shopping today, he said, “I cannot tell you what we got.”  A few minutes later he whispered, “I got you lip gloss.”  Brett steered him towards that, since it is hard to go wrong with lip gloss.  He also picked out a make-up set for Chloe, which he was very excited about!!

Receiving gifts is my love language, so Christmas is like the ultimate fulfillment.  Brett has not actually shopped for me yet, but just the thought of it makes me giddy.  I am worse than a child!

I am less than 5 weeks away from having my sweet baby boy!  I cannot wait to hold him, kiss him, and love him!!  I am also ready to be able to tie my shoes again and lean over gracefully-ish.  This pregnancy is wearing on me.  I will be thankful for it to be over.  I am also tired of being overweight.  I know that sounds funny, but I have gained close to 50 pounds.  And it has gone everywhere.  Basically, I am my normal shape (+ a belly), just ballooned.

Caleb asked me if my belly is going to keep getting fatter.  At least he asked me about my belly and not my face or arms!  LOL!
Tonight, he laid on me (like on my side) and said, “Mommy, it’s ok.  Luke is tough!”  (Because I always say, “Do not touch my belly. You may hurt Luke.”)

Have I mentioned that I would be totally fine with my kids staying this age forever??  They are just so funny and cute and cuddly.  Chloe has the sweetest voice and is just plain cute.  The way she says things makes us smile.
And Caleb is just becoming this little man.  He can dress himself now.  He actually goes through about 3 outfits a day.  After naps, he always…I mean, always….comes out with a different outfit than he went in with!

Life is good around here.  We are anxious for the next 5 weeks to pass quickly.  Life with a newborn is tiring and a lot of work.  And having 3 will be new and challenging, I am sure.  But it is always so amazing to meet your little baby.  And to not be pregnant anymore!!  I think the last few weeks of pregnancy are actually harder than the newborn phase.

(I Never Know What To Title Things)

As I type this post, Chloe is rocking her baby doll, singing (in the cutest voice ever), “You go to bed.  You go to bed.”  I was into babies as a little girl, so I love seeing her love her babies!!  She rocks them, changes their diapers, and gives them to Grandma (me) to hold when they are crying.  Sometimes they do not listen to her, so they get spankings.  Which just makes me laugh.  Because if you know their mama (Chloe), you know listening is not her best attribute!  She has a lot of great qualities, but obedience does not rank high!  She is just so sweet, though, that even her disobedience is cute.

Caleb and Chloe were talking in the car a few days ago, and I heard the following:
Chloe: “I want to play football.”
Caleb: “Girls don’t play football; they cheer.”

When Caleb and Brett play football, Caleb always asks me to cheer for him.

I finally figured out how I am going to decorate Chloe’s bedroom.  I found the CUTEST bedding at Target.  It is pink princess with diamonds.  Today, Chloe woke up and declared, “I am Princess Darby (Barbie)!”  Needless to say, she loves her new bedding!
I am going to decorate with pink and light green.  That was not my original plan, but as I look around, that is really in right now, so it is easy to find cheap decor!

I had an OB appointment earlier in the week.  I have not been in six weeks (oops) because I had to cancel an appointment (and then my next one was just two weeks after, so I waited instead of rescheduling).
Brett and I joke that all my weight gain is just my baby.  He reassures me that it is not my fault that I am carrying a 50 pound baby.  Yes, you read that right: I have gained 50 pounds.  My OB is so sweet.  She seriously is the tiniest woman I know and cannot weigh more than 90 pounds.  When I was complaining about my weight gain, she kept rationalizing why it is ok.  She thinks my shoes weigh at least 5 pounds.  And my clothes probably weigh another 5.  So, really, I have not gained much at all.  My thighs, face, and arms would say otherwise.  But I will keep lying to myself.

On that note, I am counting the days until my sweet baby arrives.  I am SO excited.  It will be just a few weeks after Christmas, and wow, Christmas is almost here!!
I always wondered why very few people have their Christmas shopping done by now.  I was done like a month ago.  Then I realized that I only buy for my little family of 4 (excluding myself, so 3 actually) and my little sister.  My siblings and I have decided to just buy for our own kids (we all have different taste in toys).  All of us are on a fairly limited budget (and try not to give into consumerism), so it works well.  And no one ends up with junk.  Brett’s family has been cutting back on giving, but my kids get stuff from all of their grandparents (both sides) and great grandparents.  I was the first on Brett’s side to take a stand and not buy for everyone, but we just do not have the ability to do so.  I am sure they were not on board with it at first, but in recent years, they have all cut back…..so I guess I started a good trend.  They are all just so sweet and giving.  I love to give, but I prefer to give to those who have very little.
Back to my point: when you only buy for a few people, it is way easier!  So that is how I get done so fast :).

I am in a major simplifying mode right now.  I am going through all of our storage, closets, and drawers getting rid of anything that feels excessive.  My favorite time of the week is dropping off a bag at the thrift store.  If I think an item is useful to a friend, that is my first option….but I do not want  to junk up other’s lives.  This made buying for Christmas hard this year, but I was intentional.

Well, I may or may not be back before Christmas!  If not, have an awesome, wonderful, sweet Christmas!!!!!!

See you in 2010 (but probably before).

Thanks for taking the time to read my blog.  I am not the best writer, but I do enjoy sharing my life with my friends!!

Hello.

I am 33 weeks pregnant.  On the home stretch!  I can hardly wait to meet my precious little guy.  I just know he is going to be the sweetest, cutest little baby!  He moves around a ton (more so than I remember with my other two), but I sense that he will be a calm baby.  I do not feel like I adequately enjoyed the baby phase with my other two kids, so I am thankful for the opportunity to really enjoy it this time.  Don’t get me wrong, I did enjoy their baby stages and loved every minute of them growing and changing….but I just can tell that I am more relaxed and excited this time.  Now that I have a boy and a girl, who are growing way too fast, I feel less nervous.

Plus, my kids are besides themselves with excitement!!  Caleb keeps asking if he can just saw open my belly to take Luke out.  He really wants to show him all of his toys and introduce him into the world of all things boy!  Caleb told me tonight that when Luke is in the kitchen, he will carry him to the living room.
And Chloe is just ready for a baby of her own.  When we visit friends with babies, she always has to hold them.  They bring her much joy.  In recent days, she has been practicing changing diapers on her dolls.  At a Bible study I go to, they use gloves when changing kids’ diapers.  When Chloe was changing her baby’s diaper, she put on a glove to do it.  So cute!
When Chloe holds her baby, she likes me to hold her like a baby.  I’m “holding my baby whose holding her baby”.  It is times like that when I beg her to stay two forever.

Which, by the way, 2 year olds are way easier than 3 year olds.  I am not sure who ever invented the “terrible 2’s”, because while no age has been terrible, the 3’s have been more challenging for us.

So, anyway, back to happy memories….
Tonight I went to the grocery store in search of post-dinner treats.  Plus, its getting really cold here, so I wondered if it might snow.  With not much food in the house to speak of, I decided a trip to the grocery store was wise.
When I arrived home, Brett showed me that our kids had cleaned the entire living room by themselves.  He was doing something in the kitchen, not really paying attention to them free playing.  They asked him to, “Come see” (which Caleb does a lot….he likes to show us everything he does).  All of their toys were put away!!  Getting them to pick up toys is usually no easy task, so this really took us by surprise.  To celebrate, we gave them ice cream and let them stay up late!

I can hardly believe Christmas is less than 3 weeks away!!  I am so excited for Christmas Day!  My kids are really into it this year, so we are going to have extra fun.  Caleb often asks when I am putting the wrapped presents under the tree.  I am thinking Christmas Eve….otherwise, the temptation would just be too great for them!!  And talk about the days dragging on forever!!  Do you remember how LONG days felt as a kid??
We do fairly low key Christmases.  It is our family tradition to be in our home on Christmas Eve and Day, so its just our little family (since no family lives in town).  Though we both have awesome families, I love celebrating small!  I feel like we all enjoy it more (mostly because I am not a good traveler, so I am never at my best when away from home).  We take our time, and my kids do not feel pressured to act a certain way.  With the exception of this year (because I am too pregnant to travel), we typically visit family during the holidays.
One tradition (that I got from Brett’s mom) is to give each of my kids an ornament every year.  I always do a photo ornament and try to find something that coincides with one of their interests that year.  I am not sure if I just went too late this year or what, but I could not find anything!  I ended up buying regular ornaments and taping their pictures to them.  Definitely not very classy, and I imagine they will one day wonder what I was thinking.  But, I could not break tradition.  I bought Caleb a Star Wars ornament.  He asks almost everyday if I will buy him Star Wars Legos.  He has never even seen Star Wars, but he is really into it for some reason!  When I gave him his ornament, Chloe exclaimed (she exclaims everything!), “I want my princess one!”  How awesome because that is exactly what I got her!!  It was a proud moment to know i picked the perfect ornament.  She is really into the Disney princesses!

Well, it is after midnight.  I took a gloriously long nap today, so I am not really even tired.  But those sweet little babes of mine will be up, regardless of what time I go to bed!

Hope you have a fabulous week!!!!