Monday, September 30, 2013

beginning of Sept

You know those last weeks waiting for baby? those long boring days where you're kinda afraid to plan anything because baby might just decide to come early and throw all your plans off? so you end up filling days any way you can hoping he will come... but then he doesn't... these are a few pics of those days :)
Afton designed this chameleon from a rice cake. I thought it was pretty good!
obviously she hasn't mastered the art of photography yet, but she does see the beauty in a couple dandelions!
and the weeds and grass! I gotta love that green too!
Clearly one of us is ready to
and a day at the park with Grandma (who somehow managed to stay out of all the pictures :( so sorry, I wish you were in the photos with the kids)
pretty little pond
silly kids
this time we made it over to the skate park. Next time we'll bring some bikes! they loved running up and down too.
You know those moments where you suddenly realize the kids are much too quiet? You jump up in a panic and race to find the bathroom flooded, or pee all over the carpet, or every single toy and puzzle piece all over the playroom floor? I had one of those moments, and when I raced to find the boy-o, this is what I found:
Chi was sitting quietly on the bedroom floor reading a book.
I know, I couldn't believe it either--we all get lucky sometimes!
(ps. I'll get some pics of Asher up no later than tomorrow, but I have to upload the newer ones first)

Thursday, September 26, 2013

August 25th

playing  bit of catch-up to get the blog back on track... August 25th was a lovely Sunday afternoon when we discovered that there's a lot of free stuff in DC that you can do on the Sabbath. The best part (for cheap-skates like us) is that street parking is free on Sundays too, so we were able to spend about 3 hours downtown without spending anything, or requiring anyone else to work. Win-win.
WWII memorial. the kids loved all the fountains and water-features
I don't recall seeing this memorial at all when I was last in DC... it's really nice, the names of all the states and territories are all around, and I think all the countries that were involved in WWII
the kids, especially Afton, were really excited to see Lincoln. I think that's mostly because of the penny.
I'm pretty sure I appreciate this picture far more than they do. they just liked the eagles.
The new MLKJ memorial. I really loved this one, the quotes on the walls were perfect too. It was the week of the 50th anniversary of the march, so there were about a million people there and we couldn't get a pic with the actual statue, but like I said, I really liked how it was done.
with the tidal basin. This was the main reason we came, to walk the tidal basin. the girls wanted to get an idea of what it's like before the cherry trees blossom so they can compare it in the spring. see the Jefferson Memorial in the background?
FDR's memorial has lots of water features too. (walking through it was enough to influence all three kids at different times that they had to run to the bathroom--influence-able much?)
Malachi was enthralled with the letters, I just thought it was cute :)
for Maggie :)... the kids loved the dog statue.
we made it all the way around to Jefferson's memorial. it always amazes me how big it is!
chi couldn't walk anymore because he fell and skinned his knees :(
and just to prove we were there too :)
in other news, or not news really, but it amused me, Afton designed a library in her room that Sunday morning... I thought it sounded like a nice, quiet activity when she told me what she was doing... then I saw it... she was getting out every book and every stuffed animal and posing them together all over her room. it was actually a HUGE mess by the time she was done, but it was a quiet activity... oh well. at least she's big enough to clean up after herself!
ps, that's her sheet hanging from the top bunk instead of being on the mattress... I have no idea why.

Saturday, September 14, 2013

introducing Asher Blaine

Most of these photos are already on FB, for those that are only interested in pictures, but I'll include some details of the birth story for those that want 'em, feel free to skip this post if you don't!
Baby sure took his time coming... or maybe not, he was technically only a couple days 'late,' but for some reason I was completely convinced he'd be here early, so it was hard that he wasn't! any way you look at it, I was sure glad to meet this boy!
After my mom coming out early to help with the baby that didn't come yet, I tried most of the old wives' tales to try to get labor started... including caster oil, which did seem to work, so if you want to try it next time, I'll let you know the tricks. Fortunately, Mom was able to extend her trip a couple days so she WAS able to meet baby Asher :D. I'm so glad that she was able to do so! and double thanks to Dad, Nicki, and Naomi for sharing her a few more days!
in labor, the belly doesn't get any bigger than that!
So, story time... I took the caster oil Wednesday evening, and it did it's job and made me feel sick to my stomach for a couple hours, I knew I had a few mild-ish contractions after dinner (around 8), but I couldn't tell if they were doing anything, or just reacting to upset stomach. Either way, I knew I hadn't slept very well the night before, and if I was in labor, I wanted to get some sleep, so I went to bed around 9 hoping the contractions wouldn't let up too bad while I slept. They didn't let up at all, but they didn't get worse for a while either, so I didn't sleep at all, but I did rest, and Paul got a couple hours' sleep. By about 9.30-10 I was pretty sure I was really in labor now, but I didn't anticipate anything happening before morning still. By 11 I was really uncomfortable, though the contractions were still not regular or really bad--mostly about 5-10 minutes apart, though I never get regular contractions either. I figured I might as well wake Paul and head to the hospital because if I got too much more uncomfortable I wanted some drugs :) --I always think this when I'm nearing transition, but it never occurs to me that I'm in transition till it's too late for drugs anyways! You'd think by the 4th time it would have sunk in, but it hadn't. So it took about a half hour to finish getting ready and get out the door to the hospital. In the car I hit transition, and was promptly miserable--contractions every 2-4 minutes and about 2 minutes long. This was especially apparent as we got off the highway and had to wait at a crazy-long light to turn left onto the hospital street... 2 full contractions at the light! Then there wasn't parking very close to the ER entrance, so I hobbled painfully to the lobby door where someone was coming out, so we could sneak in... it was only a couple more feet to the ER, but I couldn't make it. The poor night-desk man looked as frazzled as I felt... and the admissions/registration people wanted Paul to stop do something... I couldn't even sit in the lobby chairs cause there was too much pressure (I was seriously considering delivering my own child in the lobby while people argued over what to do... though to be fair, it was probably less than 3 minutes til someone came with a wheelchair, it felt like FOREVER!!!). I found out as soon as I got back to L/D that what I felt was actually a bulging water sac, not baby's head, which was only a minor consolation. I don't think anyone was watching the clock too closely at this time, but I know we arrived at L/D sometime after 11.36 (cause that's when I was still watching the clock with my contractions in the car... and it doesn't count walking across that forever-big parking lot or waiting in the lobby) and baby was born at 11.59. The nurses and on-call dr were wonderful, though they all assured me that the fact that baby was posterior was a blessing because he made it to the delivery room that way instead of showing his face in the car or parking lot... I'm afraid I'll have to agree to disagree... I'd heard that posterior (face-up) is a lot more painful than anterior--but I. had. no. idea. I'd have to say it's much. much. much more painful! I sincerely hope no one else ever has to do that! it's so much worse than I ever imagined... and I think I did pretty well to have the other three naturally too. this was harder than all three of them combined. I think I'd have done okay to catch my own baby rather than deal with it that way, but at least this way the nurses feel useful ;). Anyways. the important part is that Asher was born with no major complications, and in great speed, so at least the pain didn't persist at that level too long! I can already tell that recovery is going to be worse this time too, despite my being in better shape than ever before.
Asher Blaine Williamson
wasn't named yet at this point, but I can introduce him now, so I will :)
I love this picture, he looks so much like his Daddy!
it took me a few minutes to unwind (you can read that as 'make sense' I was rambling pretty bad for a little while) after delivering, and the first thing I remember asking was which day he was born, I think I phrased it really well... 'was he born yesterday or tomorrow?' the nurses laughed and said yesterday :) 11.59 on the 11th.
my turn to hold him!
Asher's been having a little heart arrhythmia that we've been monitoring for the last couple weeks before delivery, and he still had to go to the nursery for a while at the hospital so they could keep him on a monitor for a bit. so Paul was able to get a few more hours' sleep at home and be there to help the girls get off to school the next morning, armed with news and pictures to share with their classes, and I was able to get a couple hours (interrupted, of course, it's a hospital) sleep too.
Paul and Grandma and Malachi were able to come in Thursday morning for visiting hours and meet Asher.
my favorite pic of my boys!!! I love it!
I'm SOOO glad Grandma was able to meet Asher before she left! this pic is all the more precious because of her being able to be there!
the girls were able to come after school for a while too, so they could meet baby brother in person :)
rayna is quite the little mother! she loves holding Asher and can hold him for a long time without getting tired
Getting ready to come home on Friday:
this is another favorite photo... 2 of my kids actually look a little alike! at least they have similar smiles :)