Monday, September 29, 2008

SO glad to have that off my chest!

The news is out now! We're expecting baby #4 sometime in mid-May. My official due date is the 18th, I think, but I know I'll be scheduled for a c-section earlier than that, but who knows when the baby will actually come. Marc-Adam taught me to never be so sure of the plans that I've made. :)

I've known for almost 3 weeks now. The first few days it was terrible not to be able to tell anybody. I really wanted to wait to announce it until after our trip because we were planning on telling my parents and the kids while in Disney World. So we told my in-laws just before we left, and then broke the news to the kids and my folks the first night we were there. I actually got it all on video. The younger two kids didn't really care obviously (Zachary has yet to say anything about it), my parents got excited, but Stephen, who had been up since 3am that morning and had only an hours nap jumped up and yelled, "WHAT?! I already have to listen to him cry *pointing at Marc-Adam*! Now we're having another one?!"


Not the reaction I was expecting. Especially since he's been saying for months that he wanted another baby. He's since apologized for acting like that and is acting more excited, but it would've been nice to have him really excited on the video. I feel bad for his future sibling to have to watch that.

But who might win us $10,000.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

I'm baaaack!

Howdy! We're back from our fabulous vacation. Actually we were back on Friday, but I didn't feel like getting to all the e-mail and blogs again, so I had to convince myself to do it today. I have a bill that needs to be paid online anyway. So, I'm spending some time catching up with what's been going on with all of you while I was playing myself silly in Disney.

We had a seriously fantastic time. We came back exhausted and overstimulated. Friday night, we were all in bed asleep by 9pm. ALL of us! The kids loved it (even though the lack of normal sleep made Stephen terribly irritable) and we did everything we wanted to do. There were far more people than we had expected, but we still didn't wait more than 20 or 30 minutes for rides or shows. The weather was fabulous, except for one whole afternoon on Monday and for about 15 minutes on Tuesday. I did discover that my hair revolts against Florida weather and water. It looked terrible all week and there was nothing I could do about it. I did have a hat that I wore until the showers on Monday afternoon. At some point during that rain, my hat got wet and shoved into a bag, so that when I took it out, it looked like a hat that should be worn by one of the bears in Country Bear Jamboree. I left that hat in the trash in Florida. It made me sad.

I'll post pictures soon, but we got pictures with so many characters (no autographs though, because I didn't think about that). Just off the top of my head, we met Tigger, Pooh, Darby, Eeyore, Rafiki (the kids didn't even know who that was), Spiderman (at our trip to Islands of Adventure), the Cat in the Hat, Thing 1 and thing 2, The Grinch, Curious George and the Man in the Yellow Hat, Buzz Lightyear (twice), and Woody. There's more I'm sure, but that's all I can think of. If you aren't already thinking about or planning a trip to Disney, you should start NOW. Seriously. It's a lot of work, especially with really young kids, but it's so worth it. We're already planning another trip for 2010. Except then, we'll have 3 more mother and father-in-law are joining us....and the new baby.

Due May '09.


Friday, September 19, 2008

Unintended bloggy break

Tuesday afternoon I sat down at my computer to write some e-mails and to blog only to find that I had no internet connection. I quickly fired up the troubleshooting software to find out what the heck was wrong only to find that I also had no phone lines. I called our company to report the problem only to be told that they were experiencing an extremely high call voulume due to damage done by Hurricane Ike (also known as the hurricane that just keeps on giving). Yesterday afternoon, I saw that a large telephone pole had fallen (a few days AFTER Ike passed through) and there were all kinds of phone trucks and phone guys working on it. So I'm guessing that was my problem. My original plan of action was to just ignore the problem. At least until after we got back from Disney. I figured if it were a system wide problem, it would be fixed by then, and if not, well, then maybe the call volume wouldn't be so high and I would be able to get through. But it looks like it's going to get fixed. I may call my house soon to see if my machine picks up meaning that the line went through.

So that's why I wasn't around this week. TOMORROW, I'm getting on a plane headed to the place where dreams come true. I'm so excited. Really, I just want the Cap'n Crunch Chicken Fingers at Planet Hollywood. I've been craving those for a few weeks. Anyway, I don't know if I'll find a place to get to the internet during that time, so I probably won't be blogging this coming week, either. But I'll be back at the beginnning of NEXT week with all the pictures and details of our excitement. Oh, and please pray for safe travels and good weather. It's supposed to be thunderstorming every single day we're there. Boo.

Oh, and speaking of excitement...someone came to look at our house yesterday (only the SECOND person ever) and liked it so much they wanted to come look at it again today. YAY! Maybe maybe maybe we'll get an offer while we're on vacation!

Have a great week, y'all! Stay out of trouble! Love all around.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Random ramblings

The next few days should be hectic. I've got to get the house spotless, in case someone wants to come look at the house while we're gone, and get all of us packed and ready for the big trip. I actually have to get all that done by Wednesday evening, because Thursday we have stuff going on and we've decided to stay with my parents Thursday night (in addition to Friday night that we had planned on so we could get up early to get to the airport). Today, I had some dental work and I've been so tired this week (I think all the hurricane stress sapped me more than I realized). So instead of working on getting things done during nap time, I passed out on the couch for an hour and a half. Thank goodness for DVR because Stephen was able to watch whatever he wanted so I could get that rest. But now I have 2 days to get it all done...and I don't know where to start. So all day today, I kept finding myself just wandering through house trying to find something to do that would make me feel productive and that I thought I wouldn't have to do again before we leave.

I'm so happy to finally be able to put my focus on the trip now, but I'm also thinking about what comes after that. I'm anxious to get started with school, and I'm toying with the idea of starting to potty train Marc-Adam. I know. He's not even 2. Starting our homeschool year and potty-training at the same time. Bucket full of crazy. But he just seems so ready. He tells me when he's 'gone' and when he needs to be changed. He goes and gets all the stuff I need for each diaper change. When the kids holler for help in the bathroom, he runs in ahead of me saying, "Wipe! Wipe!" He flushes the toilet and tells the contents "bye-bye". He's so interested in the boys' undies and he's always trying to take his diaper off so he can sit on the potty, but I won't let him, because he wants to sit there My heart's just not in it yet, and I certainly didn't want to be hauling a potty training child on a plane and then to Disney World. That would just suck all the fun and relaxation out of the whole week.

As I'm typing this, I'm half watching an episode of John and Kate Plus 8. They're on a plane with the 8 and things are quickly falling apart. Kate's crying, as are what sounds like at least half of the children. I'm glad we're not taking 8 kids to Disney World.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Getting back to normal...well, maybe not

Ahhh....things should be getting back to normal very very soon. I'll unpack everything that got packed up in case we had to make a quick getaway. Food will go back into the pantry where it belongs and the weather will clear up soon. I'm so glad this thing has finally passed and hopefully it'll be another 25 years before we take another direct hit.

And now that that excitement is over, I can let you in on a little secret that's got me REALLY exicted. 6 days from now, my family (including my parents) will be sitting on a plane heading for Disney World! The kids know we're going, but they think it's 16 days and that next weekend we're going to Dallas. That was my cover for the packing and planning that they're going to be seeing over the next few days. Then, next Saturday morning, we'll wake them up at 4am and tell them, "We're going to Disney World TODAY!" I bought them Leapsters that they have no idea about to help them stay busy and calm at the airport and on the plane. I think they'll all just be beside themselves. Stephen's been asking for some kind of video game player for a while and I'm pretty adamantly opposed to owning video games of any sort. But I caved for the Leapsters just so they can have something new and fun for the plane ride. And then in the future, we'll use them for situations where they might need to be entertained for a few minutes while I take care of business.

There are lots of surprises in store for the kiddos on this trip. Our days are pretty jam-packed but it'll still be relaxing and fun and leisurely.

We're praying off any more bad weather...for here AND Orlando. It looks like things are clearing up and the Atlantic is almost empty of anything that might cause us problems.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

All is well

It's 1:42pm. The worst is over. The weather is still really nasty and it's almost creepy outside. But we're safe. The house has no damage. Let me repeat--we are safe, and the house has no damage. I'm feeling a bit overwhelmed right now at how blessed we are. We're still out of power, but my in-law's have it, so that's where we are right now. We just had a nice, hot meal that my mother-in-law cooked instead of the spaghettios and boiled eggs we had planned. We drove around for a little bit before we came out here just to see how the town looked. There are downed limbs, trees, power lines and rooves all over the place. The tin roof of one business in town is literally wrapped around the power pole in front of the building. Another business lost it's roof completely. It's laying in the parking lot. One light pole was literally twisted and broken in half.

At one point in the night, about 4am, I was surprised to hear what I thought were cars going by in front of our house. I realized that that must be a lot of cars and therefor it couldn't be cars. It turned out to be the wind. I got up to go look outside and it was bad. Our large live oak in the backyard was twisting and turning. It was scary. Just by listening to the storm inside the house, we had no idea how bad it was outside. I was expecting creaking and moaning and bumps and thumps. I never heard any of that and so we all actually slept pretty well, even though we were up early because it was so hot. The lights went out about 4am. I realized last night how well our house is built. It's a sturdy little house.

Sweet Hubby just texted me to tell me we have power now (he went back to get some stuff out of our fridge).

We didn't even lose a single limb. There's lots of little leaves and branches along with a couple unfortunate animals (ew), but other than that, we're no worse for wear.

I can't even describe the relief.

Friday, September 12, 2008

What's the right way to pray during a time like this?

So it looks like the storm has indeed moved to the east a little and last I heard about our area, we may only be getting 60-75 mph winds. In which case, it still might be a little scary, but we might not even lose power. That's better than the eye passing right through us. I heard that some transformers are built to go out in 75 mph winds because those winds are strong enough to down power lines so if the lines do go down, there won't be live wires all over the place. That's smart. I wondered about that.

During all this I've been praying, but it feels a little sticky . Obviously, stranger things have happened, but let's face it, this storm isn't just going to go away. It's not going to just disappear from the gulf. So when I pray for us to not get a hit, I feel like I'm basically praying for it to be sent upon someone else. That just feels wrong. I don't want a direct hit or danger in my household, but I certainly don't want to wish it on someone else. So I've just started praying that no matter what happens, that my family is safe and that there is minimal damage to my home. Really, I just want this to pass fast enough that we can go on our big trip next week without having to think about whatever we're still dealing with after this storm. That's the goal.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Batten the hatches

We're home. And I couldn't help but get my ol' 'puter hooked back up.

We're staying put during Ike. That's all we can do. We filled up our gas tanks this morning and I went to Wal-Mart (I was there before 8am and it was already a madhouse). I tried to get as many supplies as I could within our budget, but I'm a little worried about our food supply if we're out of electricity for more than a couple of days.

We actually got plywood for the windows since they were talking about 80-110+ mph winds here where we live (and we live pretty far inland). That was several hours ago...I'm hoping things have changed a little bit. Before they were talking about the eye (where the strongest winds are) would be coming straight up through our little town. But last I looked, they said it had moved east and the eye would be passing about 30ish miles east of us. Whatever happens, we'll be boarding up and all camping out in Marc-Adam's room tomorrow night. My in-laws are coming to hunker down with us, too. It should be an interesting night with 3 small kids, 4 adults and 2 dogs in a 10x11 room. But I guess people all over the world live like that every day. We can do it. I told my father-in-law that it might not be pleasant, but safe trumps pleasant.

I might check in once or twice tomorrow morning, but otherwise I'll get back on to let you all know what's going on as soon as we have electricity.

If you are in the path of this sucker, stay safe and take care.

Edited to add: This is the song that I've been singing in my head all day. It's been my prayer today.

Just so you know

I'm at my parents right now. I'm going home today, but it looks like Ike is headed straight for us. Our little town so far from the coast could be getting hurricane force winds. We're in the process of deciding now what we're going to do--stay or leave. Whatever we do, we've already unhooked our CPU at home, so I won't be around for a few days, so I'm posting now to let you know what's going on so you don't worry or wonder where I am while this thing is hitting. I'll get back to the blog as soon as I can.

Love all around.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008


So do you all remember several months back when I was posting almost every day about our woes with Stephen? He suddenly went a little crazy and was having tantrums at all hours of the night and having awful behavior during the day. I was sleeping in his room for weeks and I finally gave up and told him that if he needed to be in the same room as me, then he would have to be the one sleeping in my room on the floor. Since then, he's been coming in in the middle of the night to sleep the rest of the night on a palette on our bedroom floor. I wasn't happy about it, but as long as I got to sleep all night in my own bed, I was willing to go along with it. I eventually got him a clock for his room and told him he couldn't come in until 1am. It worked great and that's been our arrangement for several months.

One night last week, though, he went to bed really late after a long and hard day. He ended up staying in his own bed until about 6:30am. When he got up to come into our room, I was awake enough to tell him that if he stayed in bed 1 more hour he would have stayed in bed all night long (6:30am is still middle of the night to us). He said, "Okay!" and happily went back to his room and slept for another hour and a half. He was so proud when he woke up and called everyone. He told me that afternoon that he was going to stay in his room all night that night, too, and I was all "Yeah, sure." But he did, and he has every night since. He even invited his brothers to go into my room and tear up his palette with him (he was very particular about his palette being right and straight).

So that problem worked out all on its own without any coaxing or worrying on my part. And I think his mood's better during the day, too. Which makes life easier on EVERYONE, because if Stephen ain't happy, ain't nobody happy.

And on a sidenote, I went back through my archives to find the link for the post I linked above and it's really interesting because I don't remember most of the huge issues that I posted about. I remember that we had a hard time overall, but not specific situations. Things were so bad back then that I would pray every day for God to help us all forget some of the really awful situations (mostly because of how I hated how I handled some of them). And I have forgotten. I don't think Stephen remembers either. He's got an amazing memory and brings up good and bad memories from long ago and he's never mentioned anything from that time. God is good.

Sunday, September 07, 2008

Oh y'all....

This is scaring me.

Normally, I would be slightly worried about this. And no time is good. But now is just so not a good time to be dealing with a major hurricane. Not now.

Friday, September 05, 2008

Right on!

More political stuff. I'm just really hyped up with the RNC being this week....feel free to skip this if you're tired of me posting it. At least I'm not blathering on about my own opinions...I'm just posting other people's that I happen to agree. :)

This is just fun to watch. Be sure to watch the last minute of the video.

Thursday, September 04, 2008

I want to be best friends with her

I'm going to try not to get all political on you, but you'll have to bear with me over the next couple of months as the election draws near. I probably will be posting more and more about it because it's important to me and I hope it's important to you, too. And I hope that maybe even a respectful, civilized discussion and/or debate can come out of it.

So anyway, I didn't get to watch Sarah Palin's speech last night. But I got to read about it. I heart Sarah Palin. I was underwhelmed by John McCain's pick for VP at first, but the more I read about her and the more I hear what she has to say, I'm getting really excited about the prospect of having her as our Vice President.

And what Obama's been saying about her makes me like her even more. He keeps on talking out of both sides of his mouth. Blech.

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

So happy!

A while back (oh a year or so ago, I guess) I was so disappointed when one of my favorite homeschool blogs "shut down". The author needed to do other things, I guess. I don't remember if she ever said why she was shutting it down. But then a few days ago, I happened to stumble back again and she's writing again!! YAY!

In addition to writing about homeschooling issues, she also writes a lot about politics (some, including me, would argue that homeschool issues and politics go hand in hand). And the lady knows her stuff. Here are a few of her articles that I think are can't miss when it comes to the upcoming election. I hope you find them interesting and informative, too:

Above My Pay Grade?
Obama and Infanticide
Obama on Education Reform
The Audacity of Home
The Politics of School Choice
Worth a Second Look?

That's just a few. There's still more. I love her blog!

Home again, home again, jiggety jig

Well, I'm so so pleased to let you know that my cousin and her husband were able to bring baby Alex home yesterday. We are all so relieved that he's better and finally where he belongs...home with his wonderful family! Thanks to all of you who kept Alex and his family in your thoughts and prayers. I appreciate it and I know his mama and daddy do, too.