Week 4 Around Here {2019}

Taking... care of Wyatt as he recovered, ever so slowly, from his tonsil and adenoid removal surgery.  He has been in horrible pain, especially at night, all week.  He wails from the pain in the night, refusing the swallow the pills (he prefers pills to the liquid, which burns, during the day) and is constantly tantruming between the hours of midnight and 6am.  He has woken up the whole house most nights.  I guess this can be common.  But it is killing me softly.

Enduring... a flood in our brand new bathroom after a pipe burst in the wall behind the shower on Saturday. Poor Josh had to work so hard to rip everything out, dry it and replace it.  He's been a real saint, fixing it, bit by bit, so we can have a bath again for Carly to bathe in.  (She doesn't like showers.)  Luckily the only other damage was to the carpet in the hallway, which we were planning to rip out and replace with new flooring anyway. Phew!

Surviving... a super strange allergic reaction to my taco bowl from a local mexican food restaurant on Saturday night.  I ate the entire bowl (delicious!) and then noticed my lips were swelling up and had hives on the inside.  Thankfully my mom (who has experience with food allergies) was here and knew what to do.  I took some benadryl and watched the clock.  It didn't escalate from there, and I was fine within an hour.  But boy it was scary!  (And I won't be having a taco bowl again any time soon!)

Sending... my mom off to my sister's house on Monday after enjoying her help all weekend.  She was there when Wyatt went into surgery Friday and then spent the whole weekend entertaining the twins and playing with Carly and helping out around the house. I was so grateful she was there, as were the kiddos.  I am so thankful that she came so willingly and helped so much.  What a blessing. 

After... she left Josh took the twins and their friend Cristian riding on their four wheelers on his parents land. Such a fun dad!

Reading... Where The Crawdads Sing and Girl, Wash Your Face.  I am also listening to Orange is the New Black on audio.  Where The Crawdads Sing was so good and I couldn't wait to get to the end to figure out the mystery. When I got there, I was blown away. So good!  I finished Girl, Wash Your Face as well, and loved it.  I am going to spend the next few days journaling about all the things I underlined in it.  (Like "It's all in your hands now.  Everything that happens from here on out is entirely up to you." So inspiring!)

Starting... All The Ugly and Wonderful Things, and reading over 100 pages the first day.  I could not put it down.  It is dark and disturbing and amazing.  No wonder it has so much buzz around it.

Loving... how Carly is obsessed lately with Llama Llama.  We read one of his books every night.  She also loves Skippyjon Jones.

Accepting... flowers from Josh after many sleepless nights with Wyatt.  All week I had alarms set for every three hours to wake him and give him Tylenol and Ibuprofen alternating to stay on top of the pain.  It was like having newborn babies again!  But this time, I'm ten years older! (And let me tell you, I am feeling those ten years!)  Also this week, Carly's potty training has her waking up when she needs to pee.  Instead of peeing in her diaper, she wakes up and yells, "Mo-om! I have to go PEE!" So I have to climb out of bed, get her up, take her potty, and then get her tucked back in... So I have been more exhausted this week than I've been in years!  So much so that I have been drinking coffee again this week, and I haven't had coffee in over a year!

Meeting... my book club girls to discuss this month's book (my pick!) which was How To Walk Away.  I have heard it compared to Me Before You, but I didn't find it similar at all.  I loved it, just like I loved Me Before You, but it was a story all it's own, despite the fact that one of the characters face similar circumstances.  Her ups and downs were so believable and realistic, and there were many quotable quotes I underlined:
"Because that's all we can do: 
carry the sorrow when we have to, 
and absolutely savor the joy when we can.  
Life is always, always both."

Blessed... all week by the village around us.  People brought us meals and gift cards for meals and toys and balloons for Wyatt... I mean, it was amazing.  People ran errands for us, and called to check on us constantly.  Despite my complete exhaustion, we got through this week unscathed because there were all these amazing friends looking out for us.  Thank you to each and every one of you. 
Thank you also to each of you who prayed for us.  We felt those prayers on the day of surgery, and all throughout the week.  

Celebrating... our last little Babyham's birthday on Thursday.  Carly is now officially three.  (Although, any time anyone asked, she said she was turning fifteen. Haha!)  For her birthday, Wyatt wrapped all her presents (he asked if he could, and I happily said yes!) and the three of us made cupcakes, which we frosted pink & purple. 
Wyatt also lit her candles and we all sang Happy Birthday.  She blew her candles out about two thirds of the way through the song. I think she couldn't stand the anticipation anymore.  She was SO excited the entire day.  Every time someone said, "Happy Birthday!" to her, she said, "Happy Birthday" back to them. She is so full of life and love, I walk around in awe of her, trying to be more like her.  I want to wake up that excited to face everyday.

Walking... down memory lane as we said goodbye to the last of my baby & toddler days with children.  I have loved every minute of raising Carly (and her brothers before her).  She brings so much joy into our days.  (I'm including a taste of what I've been doing to myself... enjoy!)

Our Gender Reveal
{Fall 2015}
Carly May Cunningham
{Born January 24, 2016}
My sweet rainbow baby
Our daughter

I am so blessed to get to be her mama.  


And lastly, here's a quote I'm loving this week 
as I barely survive these four kids and Wyatt recovering:
As my grandma says,
"This too shall pass!"



Week 3 Around Here {2019}

Taking... Wyatt and the twins to birthday parties Saturday afternoon.  It was nice for them to have a chance to get out of the house for a while, and Josh picked them up, which was great.  While they were gone, I went on a walk with Carly, which wasn't necessarily what I wanted to do, but it was definitely what I needed to do.
The weather was beautiful, and we even met a super friendly kitty on the way home, which absolutely made Carly's day.

Putting... hardwood flooring down in our house. (It's actually composite click-lock flooring that looks like hard wood but is waterproof/kid proof. It's amazing!)  Josh and his brother Samuel worked their tails off this weekend moving furniture and laying flooring, getting our room, the boys' room and Carly's room finished, as well as half of the hallway. 
While the flooring looks awesome and is a dream come true, living in the mess with four kids in 1400 square feet in the middle of winter made for a bit of a long weekend for all of us. Ha!  We were all very glad when the furniture could make its way back into each room and life resumed normalcy.

Experiencing... some physical anxiety in the early parts of this week.  I think some of it was due to the chaos in our house with all the renovating, but a lot of it was due to anticipating Wyatt's tonsil and adenoid removal Friday.  None of our kids have ever had surgery, and with Wyatt's asthma, I was really nervous about him being put under.  Because of that, I made sure I worked out every day this week, and it made a huge impact. 

Putting... stickers on the calendar in the kitchen every day that I exercised this week.  I remember from when I read Better Than Before by Gretchen Rubin, that keeping track is often the best way to make a habit stick.  Plus I am like a kindergartner and love the positive feedback that little sticker gives me every time I get to put it on the calendar. Hah!

Giving... our boys the Love Language Test to see what their primary love languages are in an effort to improve my connections with them.  It was really interesting to see the results.  Logan prefers Quality Time & Receiving Gifts; Jack prefers Physical Touch & Quality Time; and Wyatt prefers Words of Affirmation & Quality Time. 
What struck me is that each of my kids desires TIME.  As a mom of four kids, time is not necessarily something I have a lot of! So I am going to have to get creative there.  The other ways they prefer to be shown love are really good to know as well.  I am hopeful that knowing these will improve our relationships moving forward.

Snuggling... Wyatt as much as possible leading up to his surgery. We spent a lot of time talking about his surgery, recovery and all the questions that he had.  He's such a little buddy, and I just soaked him up this week.

Reading... Troublemaker by Leah Remini.  I finished it, and gave it 5 stars.  I absolutely loved it.  (Go here to read more about my thoughts on her leaving the church)
I finished How To Walk Away during Wyatt's surgery, and I really enjoyed it. I would say it is a solid 4 star book, such a sweet read, with likable characters, and a compelling storyline (plane crash + following recovery).  The writing was beautiful and I liked the ending.
I have been reading one chapter each day of Girl, Wash Your Face, and I cannot stress enough how inspirational this book is. When I am all the way finished with it, I plan to sit down with my journal and write my thoughts about the things I have underlined in it.  So many gems in there.
When I finished listening to Troublemaker, I started listening to The Rainbow Comes & Goes, which is written by Gloria Vanderbilt and Anderson Cooper (and is read by them as well) and is really interesting to listen to.  I love memoirs and have found that I only like listening to audio books if they are thrillers or memoirs. So I am sticking to those genres this year, and reading books off my shelf the rest of the time.

Geeking... out that Katherine Center, the author of How To Walk Away, commented on my Instagram post about how I didn't want to clean my house, I wanted to lay on the couch instead and read her book.  I love how social media can connect us with people we would normally NEVER have contact with.  I think she is the third author to comment on my Instagram account, and it never fails to give me heart palpitations. #booknerdforever

Kon Mari'ing... the office & the boys' toys as I continue through the house in order to stay sane leading up to Wyatt's surgery at the end of this week.  The office was challenging, but really rewarding.  It feels so good to walk in there now and know that all the craft items I kept are things I really love and will use, and to know where everything is.
The boys' toys were another thing that were hard to sort.  But I made them do it, and they made a big dent in their stuff, plus we sorted them into "like" items, which makes them more likely to play with them. 

Crying... as we left the orthodontist office this week, as our orthodontist is the most amazing guy, and he is determined to help fix my kids' teeth, whatever the cost.  Putting the twins in braces will be expensive (as you can imagine) and they have some pretty severe issues, so when we were discussing the finances, he said that whatever needs to happen, he can help us out, he wants to help us out. He said that after all we have been through with Logan and his seizures in the last year, we could really use a win.
The rest of the day, I could not stop randomly bursting into tears. I mean, who does that? Who helps out like that? Who sees a need they can fill and just fills it? There are such amazing, good, kind, generous people in this world, and I am so blessed to be surrounded by them. It is humbling and beautiful.

Thankful... for friends who brighten my week.  Hanging with my girl Shana on Wednesdays is a definite bright spot in my week, and my friend Jen watched Carly for me Thursday so I could go to the dentist, and getting to visit with her at drop off and pick up put a huge smile on my face as well.  I love how every week God shows me why he moved me here, and that I belong here, in this village. 
I am also thankful for Uncle Samuel who showed up at our house Tuesday while the boys and I were in the throes of Kon Mari'ing their toys as Josh worked late, and made dinner as we sorted & organized.  It was no big deal, he said, but to me, it was a very big deal.

Celebrating... Carly being completely potty trained.  It took less than a week, and you guys, I seriously did nothing other than buy m&m's.  (I mean, the girl is seriously motivated by chocolate, but the truth is, she was just ready.)  She's so dang cute in her little underwear, and you can just tell, she is really proud of herself.

Grateful... my mom was able to come and stay for the long weekend to help with the other kids for Wyatt's surgery.  She has been helping around the house, taking Carly & the twins to run errands and go do fun things... it's been such a blessing.

Praying... as Wyatt went in for surgery to remove his tonsils & adenoids Friday morning.  He was so brave, he never shed a tear at the hospital, and thanks to all your prayers for peace, neither did I.  He did great during surgery, and the doctor was able to get both his tonsils & adenoids out easily.
But after his surgery, when he was coming off the anesthesia, whenever he would fall asleep, he would stop breathing.  His oxygen, which was 99 or 100 when he was awake, would drop rapidly- 97, 94, 87, 83, 79, 77, 72, 68, 65, 60... bottoming out at one point at 33%. 
Now to give you some perspective, when Wyatt was hospitalized with Status Asthmaticus in the PICU, in December 2017, his oxygen was 73 and that had the doctors in the ER freaking out. So 33 is unheard of. 
When this was happening, his entire body was completely still, heavy and unmoving, like he was dead, with no breath coming in and out of his lungs. It was absolutely terrifying.
As soon as we woke him up, he would begin to breathe again, and be fine.  But the second he fell asleep, his body would forget to breathe, and he would desaturate again.  I was freaking out.
His doctor came in and told us that this was his Central Sleep Apnea manifesting and being made worse by the anesthesia.  So it was just a waiting game.
Thankfully, as the anesthesia wore off, he was able to fall asleep and his oxygen would drop off only into the 80's.  By the time we were home and he was getting ready for bed, 9 hours later, he fell asleep and his oxygen didn't drop at all.  I cannot tell you what a relief that was to me. (And how grateful I was to have the oxygen meter I ordered last fall to better monitor his asthma!)
The recovery time should take about two weeks, with lots of ups & downs, I am told, so your continued prayers would be such a blessing to us.  Currently, I am just glad to have the surgery (and those scary not-breathing episodes) behind us and to be on the road to recovery.

On parenting... I read the following quote this week, after the terrible parenting week I had last week (where I was left feeling like a total failure on all accounts) and I like the idea that our mistakes are just ways to learn how to do better next time.  Maybe if I can remember this gentle advice from Brene, I will be less hard on myself.
I seem to think that parenting requires perfection.  And the more I think this, the more I screw up, because the pressure is so high. 

Maybe just loving my kids and doing my best is all I can do. 
And that is enough.


And for a little laugh:

I will fold my socks for you, Marie Kondo.
But I will not get rid of my books.
That's where I draw the line.