Monday, October 27, 2014

One Year Later!

This entire week I have marveled at how this year has blown by and reminiscing... "What was I doing a year ago today?" My labor was sporadic. My contractions refused to organize despite being painful so I was encouraged to go into Labor and Delivery to see if it was time. It was 10:30 pm and after fluids and an epidural and an announcement that I was finally dilated 10 was time. I had enjoyed a few hours in a peaceful environment with the comforting sound of your heart, transmitted in a constant stream of ba-bum, ba-bum, ba-bum from the monitors strapped around my large middle.  I wasn't nervous or scared or anxious, just waiting and relishing every moment..the surprise baby I felt move and imagined holding was moments away from being real, from being placed in a tiny diaper, swaddled tightly, dressed in a hat and placed in my arms. The pain didn't matter.I knew I was mere seconds from one of the greatest, most love-filled moments any mother can ever experience. And just after 2 am, there you were...that euphoric moment of seeing you held high, pink and perfect and crying. To hold kiss your head, all sticky and warm. To fall in love.

Lydia, you have been more of a blessing to us than you could ever imagine. What a miracle it has been to experience seeing you in my belly as a teeny little spec and a little less than two years later a perfectly sweet and full of personality little girl. I love you so much and can't wait to see what else God reveals to us through you. 


Monday, August 25, 2014

Never gets old-10 months

The best part of having a baby again is watching her grow. I don't stop savoring her milestones and even her "inchstones". She's utterly scrumptious.  This bright eyed girl is going places and I am there on the sidelines, watching in awe.

Little Lyddie has learned to clap, wave, say a few words ("mama", "hi" and "pup") and take her first steps. She's at that phase of babyhood where I'm constantly making a fool of myself trying to get her to do one of her new tricks or say one of her new words. She usually looks at me with some mild interest and mostly just drools or smiles or simply ignores me and goes back to her regularly scheduled gnawing on things she know she shouldn't have (toys are never enough).  However, every time she does perform one of her new tricks, I'm clapping, the kids are loudly applauding and congratulating and make a huge deal over it because we’re so proud that she's figuring things out. Fourth child or not, it never gets old.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Truly EPiC

We're over a full week in and these kids are HOOKED. EPiC Elementary is proving to be everything it was advertised to be. From the facility and it's open learning spaces, it's integration of technology, the personalized learning as well as the clear project based, problem based, challenge based, inquiry learning. I see it especially through my 4th grader because...well, I essentially get a peak into his day through Twitter. How exciting is that?

It's really and truly authentic 21st century learning and I'm loving that they are LOVING to learn.

It's going to be an exciting year!

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Back to School Blues

And as quickly as it started, it's over. This is the last day of summer for my kids. Every morning I wake up thanking God above for my career as a teacher and my ability to spend another summer with my kids. School supplies have been dropped off, we've met our new teachers at Open House and we have the brand new shoes and fresh haircuts. They're ready. I'm ready.

Sort of.

I'd be dishonest if there weren't days this summer where I was on the verge of killing my dear sweet children. My house is FAR messier and the order of our daily routine is certainly out of whack. However, all I can think about when we’re together is how limited the time is. How quickly the moments is, how funny they are, how loud they are, how alive they are, how nice it is to let them sleep in, to let them decide the direction of our lazy days.

While I'm mourning the end of another amazing summer, the kids are beyond excited for the adventure that lies ahead with their new school. New teachers, new friends and endless possibilities. I will cry a I do EVERY YEAR but as soon as I collect myself,  fall will come right on schedule.  Apple picking, soccer games, fire pits, camping, pumpkin patches, will be exciting and fun and I will be thankful for another awesome school experience for the kids.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Firsts and Lasts

Our summer has been EXACTLY they way it is supposed to be. Happy kids, tired mom. 24-hour parenting with FOUR kids including an on-the-go 9 month old. We've had A LOT of fun and although I am constantly being told "I don't know how do you do it" I honestly can't imagine NOT doing it.

Lydia has afforded me the blessing of experiencing a new "set of firsts" as I brace for the inevitability of the first "set of lasts". Yes, may sound premature but practically, you can't prepare yourself for how it all goes down nor the speed in which it seems to happen. It's happening slowly with Jonathan, almost unnoticeable...but yet I see it. Nick and Kate trail closely behind. I'm bracing myself for the last time he crawls into bed with me in the middle of the night to cuddle. This is when we have the best whispered conversations in the dark. The last time he willingly holds my hand or kisses me on the lips.  The last time he laughs at my stupid jokes or my weak sense of humor. The last time he uses the word "play" when going outside or with a friend. The last time the kids menu is a sufficient amount of food. The last time he turns around to look at ME first, his mom, with the proudest of grins when he scores a goal in soccer. The last time he simply needs me.

There are several others but the point is, I know the time will come sooner than I realize...when I'm compelled to release all that I have held fast and dear to for so many years. I read another blog awhile back that shed a more positive light on the somewhat depressing fact that they do, in fact, grow up and move on.  It said, "The good news is that just like the first time around when they were so very little, each of these lasts leads to a first".  There IS so much to look forward to. In the meantime, I've made a vow to myself that I will soak every ounce of it up. To continue to be involved and to make every effort to be free from the constant distraction of this give them my total and complete presence. My investment is in them and I don't want to miss a moment while they're mine for the little time they have been entrusted to me. So I'll enjoy the firsts and the lasts...along with the dirty laundry, the crazy schedule, the constant mess, the bickering and all that comes with having kids because one day it will be quiet and clean and I'm not sure I'm ready for that.
 (Nick-7, Kate-6, Lydia-9 months, Jon-9)

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Still Running.....trying...

For now. I'm not going to lie, despite the fact I'm just a few days shy of hitting the 2nd trimester, I'm tired. Really tired. Oh, and sick. Often very sick. Prescription Zofran sick. Never enough sleep and my "get up and go" has "gotten up and gone".  However, I'm stubborn...and that means that the Heartland Series I signed up for...will be completed.

Rock the Parkway Half Marathon @ 10 Weeks Pregnant: A beautiful course...this is my third go at it (I missed it last year due the Boston Marathon). A nice, relatively flat course down Ward Parkway...fountains, bands and PERFECT weather. I had a slower start, but found my 2nd wind about 5 miles in. Slower than the last time I ran this race, but it felt great (1:36-7:22 per mile pace-5th in my age group. In the top 20 overall out of over 2,000 woman).

Kansas Half Marathon @ 11 Weeks Pregnant: HOLY HOT AND HILLY....although I LOVED running through campus, and the many roads I had not run down since running for KU over 16 years before. Seriously...the course took us up hills we avoided as college athletes. I absolutely loved my cheering section...comprised of my dad. :) He got up at 5:00am to make the trip from Clinton to Lawrence....and endured the awkward and untrustworthy stares from people at the finish line...all because I had him carrying my black backpack. A sad revelation of where we are today. :(
(1:39-7:33 per mile pace-3rd in my age group, top 15 overall)

Another Clinton native, Kyle Kempker....he's a beast of a runner who is also running the series.

 My dear dad....what a trooper! Love having my #1 fan with me.

Running with the Cows Half Marathon@ 14 Weeks Pregnant: Another BEAUTIFUL day for a run...with cows and rolling hills in southern Johnson County. I placed 9th overall and moved up in the overall standings for the Heartland Series to 8th place overall woman! Time to retire the long run shoes in favor for some shorter races. I definitely had to work for the 1:39 (7:33 pace) this time and I'm now sporting the "baby gut" :)

Sunday, March 31, 2013


What a beautiful Easter weekend! Warm, sunny and great kite flying weather. The kids made out with not one, not two, but three Easter Egg hunts.