Monday, June 22, 2015

Five Months with Ian

Ian Michael! You're five months old! That just seems so old! You're growing up so quickly, it's amazing (and saddening) how fast the time has flown since your arrival. This month especially has felt like a triumph after managing to survive 8 days without daddy here. He spent some time in Alaska while we all held down the house. You survived, mom survived, and I feel 100 times more confident and relaxed caring for you and big brother.

You continue to amaze me, because you're the sweetest boy. You're very charming and love being around people. I don't think I'll ever get tired of your smiles, giggles, and chatter. Being in somebody's arms is still your favorite place to be, but you also love when anyone talks to you. You've spent more time this month with babysitters and in the church nursery, and everyone who meets you seems to agree: you're one happy, sweet fella. 

And when you're not happy, you let out this screechy-cry that could make ears bleed. Wooooooeee, little brother, you mean business. I'm thankful you don't often get that upset. 

You're sleeping and eating like a champ. Just as I'd predicted, you dropped a late feeding this month, which means you're now sleeping from 7:30pm to 7am each night. It's awesome! I don't want to jinx myself, so I'll hold my breath and knock on wood while I say... I have been SO blessed with 2 great sleepers. Sure, we have our "off" nights here and there, but for the most part, both Isaac and Ian love to sleep. Not only does Ian sleep through the night, but is still taking 3 naps/day. Since he dropped a feeding, he's eating 5 times/day (7:30, 10:30, 1:30, 4:30, and 7... with a lot of flexibility). All in all, I feel like this month was kind of a turning point for you, leaving behind the high-maintenance, around-the-clock newborn phase, and charging ahead to the infant stage.

This boy is DYING to do anything his big brother can do. That includes moving and eating. He's already rolling both ways (front to back and back to front) like a champ, and is getting more and more steady sitting up by himself. When he's on his tummy, he can pull his legs up underneath him and scoot around like a little inchworm. The boy is SO active. He doesn't stay in one place for very long at all... Lord Jesus help me when he really does get crawling. We haven't introduced solid food yet, although he will likely get a taste of rice cereal sometime this month.

His first tooth erupted on May 21 with no more teeth in sight.... so I was awfully surprised when he cut tooth #2 ten days later!!! Unfortunately, all this teething means more chewing and sucking his thumb. As much as I hate thumb-sucking long term (orthodontia!!!!), it seems to have become a habit, mostly while falling off to sleep. Isaac did the same thing when he was teething, but eventually gave up the thumb. Fingers crossed you'll do the same soon.

Check out my teeth!
You and big brother Isaac have formed this adorable relationship that continues to grow and sweeten as you become more expressive and interactive. The two of you love to be near each other! You will light up with smiles and chatter when Isaac is around, and he will talk to you, give you kisses, and sing to you. Isaac especially loves to cheer you up when you are crying by singing Twinkle Twinkle Little Star. Big brother proudly introduces you to everyone we meet.

Lets see, other randoms: You're wearing a size 2 diaper still (but could probably use a 3...) and 6 month clothes with a few 9 month outfits thrown in too. Not sure of your weight and length this month, but we will see Dr. Canales at 6 months for another check up, hopefully not any sooner. You've been to the pool and the beach this month and loved them both. You love to play with your green jingly mouse.

Ian, you are my squishy, little cuddler and I adore you! My heart is so full, I'm so very thankful to be your mama. The Lord knew what our family needed when he blessed us with you. I love you!

Saturday, May 23, 2015

On Blogging

Or in my case, not.

It's been a slow, quiet month here on the blog, and I can't say that last month was all that exciting either.

Conversely, life around my house has been full. With the exception of one week with no internet (thank you near-daily severe thunderstorms), my lack of writing has been largely due to a lack of time. I went back to work and have been on the labor unit two 12hr shifts per week for the last month. That might not sound like much, especially to you moms who work 40hr weeks(!!), but it's been an adjustment for me. Fortunately, I have a job I love and a trusted friend to keep the boys, meaning they don't have to go to daycare.

And then of course, my days at home are filled with lots of catch up housework, grocery runs, never-ending laundry, and plenty of time with my two sweet boys. If these things are accomplished before the day is dark again, you can usually find me zoned out on the couch or reading a book in silence.

My brain is full, my ears are ringing, and I'm over being touched.

Parenting small children is exhausting.

Can I get an amen?

It's beautiful, selfless, and full of moments so sweet I think my heart may just burst. But it is also exhausting. And it doesn't discriminate: parenting one small child is exhausting just like parenting 4 small children is exhausting. It's just a never ending cycle of cleaning spills, cutting food, diapering/pottying, kissing boo-boos, playing with toys, picking up toys, coloring, nursing, running, laughing, bubble-blowing, rocking, cooking, feeding, and so on and so on and so on. The physical demands are relentless. Then you add in the battles that come from a toddler who tests his boundaries over and over again or a teething baby who just can't get settled. The emotional wear is tiring to the point of tears. This chapter in life has a beginning and an end, where coloring pages are replaced with homework and trips to the park change from swinging and sliding to soccer practice and catching fly balls. Friends of older children tell me, "just wait until the next stage. Then you'll really know what hard is." I don't doubt that parenthood is a challenge from conception to the end, but there is something unique about being a mommy to children who are dependent on adults for a large majority of needs.

I don't really know where i'm going with all this, and truly, I should be up cleaning bathtubs while both boys nap simultaneously (!). Maybe there's another mom out there reading this who feels like she's barely treading water ... you're not alone. I would say our case is unique (it's not), because so much of our free time is given to ministry (just like all the rest of the men & women in full time or bivocational ministry) and we are several hours away from family (just like plenty of other young families), but the more I lean in to other mom friends for support and guidance and encouragement, the more I find that we're all basically in the same boat.

We're all tired.   "Come to me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest" Matthew 11:28

We all wonder if we're doing the right thing.   "If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given to him." James 1:5

We all feel low on joy.   "This is the day that the LORD has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it!" Psalm118:24

Parenthood is a challenge, and we likely won't see the fruit of our labor instantly. A dear friend recently remarked, "Motherhood is lived in the trenches. It's beautiful, but it's in the trenches"  Just like life is hard when you want to do it well, we press forward through the difficulties to produce a home full of love, joy, and life.

And in the process, sometimes we neglect our blogs for a little while. ;)

Friday, May 22, 2015

Ian's 4 Month Update

Ian, you're 4 months old!!!

Once again, we've had a great month with you. You're such a fun boy who is full of personality and life. You continue to love being around people; if you're carried/held, sitting in laps, or being talked to, you completely light up. Your favorite person to be around is still Isaac and you could hang out in bed with him, watching and giggling for hours. Luckily, Isaac is pretty excited when you're around also. We're also lucky that you're a sturdy kid, because your brother has body slammed you once or twice while playing together on the bed. Watching the relationship develop between you and Isaac brings me such joy.

Speaking of sturdy, you're nearly busting out of 6 month size clothing. You report Tuesday afternoon for a 4 month checkup and I'm excited to see how much you've grown since last month (16# 14oz and 25.5" long!). Around 10/11 weeks, you were 14 pounds, so now that you're 16 weeks, I wonder if you've once again "caught up" with Isaac (He was 17 pounds at the 4 month well-child visit, so we will see). You're wearing size 2 diapers.

You've had a great month sleeping; I can't complain AT ALL. You're still sticking to your routine of 6 feedings and 3 naps, and sleep from 7pm to 7am with a dream feeding snuck in around 10pm. I'm pretty certain you'll drop a feeding pretty soon, so I'm gradually working the late night feeding back. You're sleeping unswaddled all the time now, which was a total breeze to accomplish. You're a little wiggle worm at night, but I catch you sleeping on your side a good bit of the time.

The biggest news I have to share about my 4 month old BIG boy.... is the arrival of his first tooth! After weeks of chewing, thumb sucking, and drool, I took a peek inside his mouth and just under the gumline was a little tooth. I was shocked!!! Then yesterday (5/21), when he was technically 4 months old, he celebrated the occasion by cutting that little tooth through the gum. And then there was much weeping and lamenting in the Mims house. My baby is growing so fast!

Ian, you are pure joy and sweetness wrapped in a squishy little package. You are so deeply loved! I am so incredibly lucky to be your mom.

Monday, April 27, 2015

Halfway to three!

Yesterday morning (Sunday), Facebook let me know that three years ago, on April 26, we announced our first pregnancy to the world. It got me all misty eyed looking at my little gummy bear ultrasound picture.... who is now this big kid:
Half wet polo shirt. Nap hair. Silly smile. This is our life.
Who would've imagined that little gummy bear would be our first boy (and that 3 years after that announcement was made, we'd already have a second little boy!). It's also crazy to think that Isaac is officially now more than halfway to three. Getting to 2 and a half seems like an accomplishment, because life in general was so much different 6 months ago. And Isaac was so much different! He has grown so much since his birthday, thankfully not in weight or height (not that I can tell...), but moreso in maturity. I can have halfway coherent conversations with him! He can tell me about his day, what he liked to do, and the times when he got upset. He can retain information and relay it back (sometimes days later). He is goofy and funny and full of life. But deep inside this always-moving, laughing, crazy boy is a sweet and tender little heart.
The "please just sit down and smile for one picture!!!" Outtakes.
So I can always remember what life is like with this funny 2.5 year old of mine, we sat down... or well, I chased him around the house and asked some fun questions. Here's what we came up with:
I'd say his favorite toy by a landslide is Gator, without which, Isaac may not survive. The second favorite would easily be Lightning McQueen. Also, I cannot remember the last time I read him The Very Hungry Caterpillar (which I just realized I misspelled ^^up there^^ Shoot.), but we read George almost every night. The kid's a little nuts for Curious George these days. Lastly, I'm pretty sure his favorite things to eat are pretzel goldfish, tomatoes, grapes, and pizza. And I'm not even going to pretend he doesn't love to eat chips and candy.

Some other things he loves: Watching movies with popcorn (which he feeds to the dog). Running in circles ALL DAY LONG. Playing in the dirt. Antagonizing the dog. Jumping on the bed.
The Look.
It hurts my momma heart to think this sweet baby will be 3 years old in a few more months. He brings so much sunshine and laughter to our lives. I am blessed every moment by this amazing boy, what an honor it is to be his mom.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Ian's 3 Month Update

And just like that, I went from being pregnant to having a 3 month old.

Ian, you're 3 months old!!!
This month with you has been pretty fantastic, but then again, they've all been pretty fantastic. You continue to be a very happy boy and give out smiles all day long. My favorite time of the day with you is just after taking a bath. It's not uncommon for you to be fussy on the way into the tub... it's the end of the day, you're tired, fussy, and usually hungry too, but I put you in the tub with Isaac and all is right in the world. But that's just the beginning: when bathtime is over, your personality shines through unlike any other time of the day! While big brother stays in the tub to play, you hang out with me on the changing table and talk away. Your coos, gurgles, and squeals are almost continuous - I can hardly get a word in! It's as if you're filling me in on the events from the entire day.  These are the moments when I wish I could freeze time and forever enjoy this sweet moment with you.

Each day you've grown more and more aware of the world around you. I love watching you track Isaac around the room -- he's obviously your favorite person, the way you pay attention to every thing he does and says. Trying to nurse you when Isaac is close is nearly impossible, because all you want to do is watch him! Don't get me wrong though, watching this sweet brother love makes my heart flutter in ways I didn't know before you came along.
You're getting better and better at holding your head and upper body upright while you're on your tummy or being held. You love "standing" in our laps. I've seen you roll tummy to back twice in the last few days. You have finally established a pretty predictable schedule, waking up around 7am, eating about every 3-3.5 hours during the day, taking regular naps after some play/awake time, then bath/story time at 7 and you're asleep by 8pm. I feed you one last time around 10:30-11pm and you're down until the next morning. I'm hoping by your next monthly update, you'll be about ready to drop that 11pm feeding. We'll just have to wait and see though. You're sleeping like a champ in your own room at night! You're sleeping unswaddled for naps and I'd like to try that at night as well... maybe.

I have often found myself thinking, "I can't believe I have a kid named Ian." Not sure why that sticks out so much to me, but at least once per day this thought bounces around in my head. Also, I would be doing the monthly updates a disservice if I didn't mention the battle we've had with thrush.  It has sucked. That is all. Random blog thoughts.
During a visit to the hospital (for chart audits, I'm sure), I weighed you just for kicks & grins. I wasn't surprised to see you weighing in at 14 pounds & 11 oz. This was a week ago, so you're probably hovering around the 15 pound mark by now. It's crazy to think that at 11 weeks, you'd already doubled your birth weight.... a milestone typically reserved for 4-5 month olds. You're wearing 3-6 month or 6 month clothes depending on the brand and wearing size 2 diapers.

Slow down child!! This isn't a race!! Ha!

Little brother, you are so very loved. You live up to your name day after day, because God has certainly been gracious to us. I love being your momma with every ounce of my body. You are my treasure.

Friday, April 17, 2015

Five on Friday: update style

Wow, y'all.

Life happens.

Like when you're intending to send an encouraging text to a friend before breakfast and suddenly it's bedtime and still no text.

Or like when you intend to write a blog one day, then two weeks later there's still no blog posted.

Life happens. Thanks for hanging around with me while I sort out this life with 2 babies thing.

Since it's Friday, I thought I'd share a quick "Five on Friday" things that are happening with our family.

1. Potty Training!!! Two weeks ago today, we "threw away" all of Isaac's diapers and started wearing big kid underwear. I learned really quickly that potty training is a process... learning how to pee on the potty, learning how to poop on the potty, and learning how to stay dry during sleep times. So far he's really getting the hang of the peepeeing part. Despite a few frustrating accidents, and lots of gross moments, I'm really proud of my big boy and how well he's doing. It was my goal to potty train prior to going back to work, so I'm really happy that things are moving in the right direction.
Someone wanted to hold his big boy underwear while we were walking one afternoon.
2. Speaking of going back to work, I've got less than a week left of maternity leave!!! *sob* Now, I have been spending some of my free time up on the unit doing chart audits, but those days are just a few hours long and I can take Ian with me to nurse and cuddle while I work. It's a great set up.... but next Thursday will be my first REAL shift since having Ian. I have some seriously mixed feelings about returning to 12 hour shifts. While I know it will hurt my heart to leave my boys for such long days (and I dread pumping at work. ughhhhhhhh.), I also know how desperately I need some time with other adults. So next week will be a bittersweet ending to this short season of life.
Chart audits and baby naps.
3. THRUSH. Oh how I hate you. Ian and I have been battling thrush for a long time now. It creeps up, we treat it and sterilize everything, it goes away.... then it creeps back again. I feel like I do everything I'm "supposed" to do and yet here we are dealing with it again. So frustrating. And annoying. And gross. I am thankful that it's a minor --despite persistent-- problem and neither of us are as symptomatic as we could be.

4. eMeals! We signed up for eMeals a few weeks ago and have appreciated the service a ton. If you aren't familiar with eMeals, it's a meal planning service. You get 7 days of meals and a grocery list. It has expanded our dinnertime choices beyond tacos and poppyseed chicken. Some of the recipes have been really delicious, some have been forgettable, and all have been easy and relatively quick to prepare.

5. Honestly I can't think of a fifth thing. Lame-tastic. So I'll leave you with some sweet brother love:

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Easter 2015

The Mims pray you all had a blessed and joyous Easter! For me personally, my Easter has felt substantially different and more meaningful/significant. Although we don't typically observe the season of Lent, this year I walked through the devotional Jesus Keep Me Near the Cross with SheReadsTruth. There were plenty of days that were hard to swallow, but my heart was really softened by this study and made Resurrection Sunday a great day of rejoicing!

Christ paid the ultimate sacrifice and then defeated sin and death for eternity!

We sing Hallelujah! The Lamb has overcome!!!

I was really excited to celebrate Easter this year with Isaac, because he finally feels old enough to "get it." Last year he was just a year and a half, so all the little Easter traditions were a wash. He really got into things this year though and we had a lot of fun. One of my favorite moments from our Easter week was introducing Isaac to cascarones!!! He was hilarious smashing eggs on his own head!

Here are some pictures from his Easter egg hunt with his class. Despite having an Easter basket for him, we walked out of the house that morning with no basket. Mom brain fail. Luckily, we were able to borrow an extra bucket to catch all the awesome eggs he found.

Oh, the anticipation!!!!
Checking out the treats inside the eggs

Making his way around the playground with Dad and Ian
My handsome boy.
Happy Easter!!!!
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