Sunday, November 1, 2009

Playing Catch-up!

Wow! What a busy, busy few weeks!

Drew Coleman is just growing and developing SO fast! In the last 2-3 weeks, he has started calling me "Mama", sitting up, crawling, eating solid foods. He has gotten a tooth, learned to clap his hands...what else? So much! He is just a busy bee! Of all three of my boys, I predict that he will be the "busiest"! As soon as he started crawling, he went directly for any cord in sight! My laptop had to move from the living room, to here on the kitchen table, out of sight. Out of sight=out of mind, right? I'm sure in the weeks to come, he will venture into the kitchen and find my cord again!

I read back over previous months posts about how bad this poor baby was the first 3 months. Those months were truly HORRID! Now, though, he is the sweetest, most lovable, huggable baby! I so love him! With Dakota and Dillon, it was like they were growing and developing before I even knew it, but with Drew, every day I see a difference in him! It's crazy! Perhaps it is because I am older now and pay more attention? Whatever the case, it is so sad and so exciting at the same time to see him grow daily! I am so blessed to be a stay at home mom. I couldn't stand the thoughts of someone else raising my kids and them witnessing all of their firsts instead of me.

Dillon had his first season of soccer! He really did great! I think he is just going to be a natural athlete! I am so disappointed though, because this season was so rainy and yucky, almost every game was a make-up game because the original game was rained out. Because of that, he only had ONE day game, which means I only have one full game full of pictures, instead of my usual 5,000 pictures of a season (no that number is not an exaggeration!). When he plays baseball this spring, I will be sure to take thousands of pictures, weather permitting! I couldn't be more proud of my Dillon. Our family joked for a long time about him being my trouble maker, because he is "different" than Dakota was. Dillon really tries hard to please everyone and it is very important to him that he is a good boy all the time. When he is sleepy, he can be a little booger, but any other time he is an absolute angel. I couldn't imagine my life without that one. I just love him so much!

And Dakota - so proud of my smart boy! He is continuing his piano and is doing great. He is becoming more dedicated and is practicing more and more. I love that he loves music. The day he was born, I said "look at these long fingers! These are piano-playing fingers!" Sure enough, mama knows best! He got his first 2nd grade report card last week. He made ALL A's! His lowest grade was a 97 in math. I was a little bit disappointed in that grade though, because he is SO smart in math, but isn't the best student and rushes through things, or half way does them. Still, though, I am a proud mama and gave him nothing but praises for his good work! He is such a special boy. I told him the day he brought his report card home that he should take it and show his Nana and Pawpaw Charlie, and maybe he would get a little bit of money for his good grades and he said "Nah, it isn't important to get money for good grades...I need to make good grades even without money!" How smart is he?

A week ago, today, our family welcomed our newest little one. Finally, a girl for my side of the family! Casey Ray is the most precious little angel! I am really so proud of my brother. If you know him, you know that Christopher is typically impatient, loud, and carefree. Seeing him hold his new daughter is just an unbelievable sight to me. He is so good and calm and patient. Never have I heard him say "sweet" and "heart" together in a sentence, but he just talks to Casey and calls her "sweetheart" and it is so sweet! And he is being so good to his wife, Kristin. She is amazing too. It is so cool to me that my brother and I both married childhood sweethearts that we have known since we were like 7 years old! We are truly blessed with wonderful spouses and children! God is Good!

My photography business is doing GREAT! I so appreciate the people who have given my new business venture a chance! I so enjoy photographing all these sweet kids, and I look forward to continuing to be a part of each family that I have photographed so far for many years! I love my life and I love my new job! I am looking forward to my first wedding in July at the BEACH! I can't wait!

Shea and I have decided to make some pretty important changes in our lives. I will discuss more in detail hopefully tomorrow, and will post plenty of pictures soon!

Thank you for reading!!!!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Right Brain/ Left Brain Quiz
The higher of these two numbers below indicates which side of your brain has dominance in your life. Realising your right brain/left brain tendancy will help you interact with and to understand others.
Left Brain Dominance: 9(9)
Right Brain Dominance: 13(13)
Right Brain/ Left Brain Quiz

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Such a bad mommy. :(

Oh, what a night. I feel like the absolute worst mommy in the world tonight! I was loading Drew up in the car after church and the unthinkable happened! Since he now weighs close to a ton, I can no longer dead weight lift him while he's in his car seat, so I have to give him the ol' "heave ho". As I was pulling him up, I grabbed the top of the car seat and turned his seat so that it would fit into the car (upright). I had completely forgotten that I didn't buckle him into his seat while we were sitting in church and I laid him in it. When I turned the seat upright, he went flying out of his seat, literally hitting the car parked next to us. He hit the tire and hit the ground. Poor baby cried and cried and so did I. I have never felt so low in my life. I was the one who put him in his seat and didn't buckle him. I was the one who turned him upright and dumped him out of his seat. My heart hit the ground a thousand times before his little body did. Thank you, Jesus, for having your hands on him when he hit the ground! He didn't have a scratch, a bruise, a knot or anything. I don't know how in the world he didn't! I know that he is ok though, because I watched him for a couple of hours after it happened and he took a bottle and was laughing and talking to me before bed.

Friday, August 28, 2009


I have decided that I am going to TRY to make some money with my photography! Thanks to my buddy Jeffrey for the suggestion, I have pretty much decided on! Last Saturday I met the Higdon's at Botanical Gardens to get some photos of their sweet family! They turned out so good! I even used one of the pictures of their daughter, Elle to enter into a contest to be on the cover of The Garden Dirt newsletter that the Gardens issues. How cool would that be to win??? This is the photo that I used to enter!

Friday, August 21, 2009

4 Months Later!

It was four months ago today when I was lying on that table and I saw my Sweet Baby Drew for the first time! On one hand, I can't believe he is already 4 months old, but on the other hand, I can't remember our life without him! It has been a very challenging four months for us. First, Shea had to go back to work in the office very soon after Drew was born. He had been working from home for a little over three years! That was a huge adjustment for not only me, but for Dakota and especially for Dillon. Then, everything with this reflux. I felt so sorry for this baby, but I am so relieved now that we have it fixed! I truly was afraid that he was just a bad baby! Thank you Lord for answered prayers! I was pretty disappointed when I found out that Drew was going to be another boy, but I think my family is just perfect the way it is right now. I dearly love my three boys and would not take anything in this world for them!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Dakota at Catcher

Dakota Edited
Originally uploaded by WannaBPhotographer
We're giving this travel ball thing a try. Here is one of the MANY shots I got yesterday while playing at Heritage Park in Cullman. This is my most favorite photo of Dakota EVER. I LOVE it!

Thursday, August 13, 2009

First Day of Second Grade!

WHERE does the time go?? My baby Dakota started second grade today! Seems like just yesterday I was dropping him off at Kindergarten for his first day of school. Shea made fun of me that day because I just couldn't stop crying! Today, not a tear from ol' mom! When he started kindergarten, and even first grade, the tears might have been out of worry for him! This year I am not worried at all! The only thing that makes me sad now is that he is just growing up too darn fast! Oh well, I guess time flies when you're having fun, huh?

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

School Days, School Days

School starts back in TWO days! I can't believe my baby will be in the second grade already! I can remember his first day of kindergarten. I cried almost all day. The first day of first grade, I had a big ol' lump in my throat, and may have cried a little, but it was better. Maybe this year will be a little better. I am very pleased with the teacher that he got this year. We've known her and her family for close to four years and they are great. Shea absolutely loves their son! I think that Dakota will have a very good year this year. From what I hear, the kids in his class are all good kids!

Drew is such a big boy! He's a week and 3 days from being 4 months old, and he's just about to not be able to stay in his swing anymore! That's a shame, too, because he loves that thing! But he will roll himself completely over in it, or pull himself up and put his head over the edge! I said it yesterday, but I'll say it again...he is VERY close to sitting up on his own. He is insanely strong for his age and he has great control over himself. He is such a sweet baby. I so love him!

Dillon continues to crack me up every day. He is so funny! His most used line right now is "I beat my high score!" Any time he does something good, that's what he said, with MUCH excitement! He has so much personality.

Shea is a very good daddy. He's very strict on the boys, and it's funny to see how differently they take him. Dakota is so mature about it. He honestly understands that it is our job to make sure he behaves and when Shea is fussing at him about something, he doesn't cry. Dillon, on the other hand, gets his feelings hurt and makes the cutest pouty face you've ever seen. It's pitiful!

Sunday, August 9, 2009

I did not mean for this to happen.

I so didn't mean for this to happen. When I started this blog, I said I was going to be good and faithful and updating it, and it has been about a month now since I have. I'm so disappointed in myself. Starting fresh and new, and perhaps I will be able to keep my promise to myself.

Drew is already 3 1/2 months old. He is growing leaps and bounds daily. On his 3 month
birthday (July 21), he rolled over for the first time! He had been threatening to roll over for a few days both in his car seat and in his swing, but when he woke up at 2am on July 21, which is totally out of the ordinary for him, I found him on his belly in his bed. I wondered if possibly it was a fluke, like maybe he pushed off of the edge of his bed, but he rolled over again later that day, and has rolled over every day since! He also at 3 1/2 months old is insanely close to being able to sit up by himself. If I sit behind him in the floor, I can sometimes let go of him and he is able to hold himself up for a few seconds at a time. Yesterday (8/8) he really laughed out loud for the first time. Of course, it was at his silly daddy. I have to get him and take some good pictures of him again.

I have been feeling so restless today. Restless? Is that how I feel? Or is it anxious? I want to do something creative. I want to take the boys this week and take pictures of them. I think that's what I'll do. Where to go, though? Botanical Gardens are too far away. Where is a nice place close to home where I can take the boys? There are so many beautiful old barns around here. Beautiful summer setting for 3 beautiful boys. And the fields of rolled hay. I see so many photo ops there! Wish I knew owners.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Drew Coleman

I think today might have been Drew's worst day ever. We were at my mom's house and he woke up from his nap screaming his head off. He screamed for probably at least an hour, and you could certainly tell that he was in terrible pain. We all felt so bad for him, because there was nothing that we could do to calm him. Finally I decided that I had listened to him and watched him suffer enough so I decided to call the doctor. I explained to her how we had gone from breast to formula to lactose-free to soy and none of it seemed to make much of a difference. In fact, with the soy, he seemed to do worse. Even with the probability that he has reflux, he isn't a spitter, but today he spit up several times along with all of the screaming. She told me to just do away with the soy and go back to the lactose-free formula with added rice cereal and that she was calling in Zantac for him. Please God, have your all-powerful hand on my sweet baby and whatever is paining him, help me know how to fix it. Not only is the constant screaming and crying obviously frustrating for me, but it is also heartbreaking to know that my baby is in pain and I can't help him. The doctor said that we should give this medicine a week to know if it is going to work or not, so hopefully by this time next week we will have a happy baby.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

The Fourth and Fifth of July

Have I mentioned how I love The Fourth? Our Fourth of July this year turned out to be a long, fun-filled day! We started the day by going to Joey and Windy's house for some nice grown-up time while all the kids went swimming! Dakota and Dillon had the best time playing with all of their friends who were there. Joey told us that he thought he needed to worry about Dakota with Hannah, because Dakota is just crazy about her, but was proved wrong by my little ladies' man, Dill! Since Hannah is quite the little mother hen, she had all the little kids, playing with them. I guess she didn't have much of a choice since the other option was to play with all the boys! (ewwww!) Dillon was stuck right up under Presley, Emma and Hannah the entire time we were there while Dakota hardly paid Hannah any attention! I guess he was too busy being a boy. After some good food, good conversation, and good times, it was on to Nana's house for more of the same!

We were a little late arriving since we had to round up all the kiddos, but when we got there the boys got to eat a little and swim some more. My kids are just like little fishies in the water! They can't get enough! Finally, at about 7:00, we got them out of the pool to get dressed to head downtown to watch the fireworks!

Like I said in my last blog, we hadn't been to see Thunder on the Mountain in two years, so this was really Dillon's first time ever to
see them! He LOVED them! He was so
excited leading up to the start of the show, and when it started, he could hardly believe his eyes! He kept calling them "My Fireworks!" He'd say, "Mama! Do you see my fireworks?" "Mama, are you getting pictures of my fireworks?" "Mama, do you hear my fireworks?" "Mama, let me take pictures of my fireworks!" If you are a friend on my Facebook, you may have seen the video that we uploaded from my cell phone. In the video, I have control of the phone, videoing part of the show, and Dillon sees and decides that HE needs to "take pictures of my fireworks". I hope that I can always remember that!

Dakota and Shea threw the football while waiting on the show to begin. We parked on top of a UAB parking deck that overlooked the baseball field and Dakota thought that was the coolest thing ever! The only thing that would have made our spot any better would have been if there would have been a baseball game going on!

Baby Drew even got in on the action. He was a little fussy (imagine that) prior to the fireworks show starting, but once it started, it quickly grabbed his attention and he watched them for the longest time.

The fireworks were absolutely beautiful - much better than the last time I saw them downtown. The timing was great and the song choices were perfect too! I only wished that they had played the Lee Greenwood song like they do every other year. That song IS the Fourth of July. I did enjoy, however, hearing him sing it on "Huckabee" with Mike Huckabee playing the guitar. That was great!


Today, we FINALLY got ourselves back in church. I cannot express to you how my soul needed that. Of course, we sang songs about being free - not just free in our great country, but free in Christ. Pastor Kevin preached on why it is important for us as Christians to support Israel. We talked about how Israel is the "Apple of His Eye". We should all continue to pray for our country, our leaders, and also for Israel. Our country is in dire need of prayer now, and it is our jobs as Christians to pray daily for it. Like he said, it isn't a political issue, it's a Biblical one. I can't wait until next Sunday to get back to church to be with my church family and worship with them!

After church today, Pawpaw Bud wanted to take the boys to Rickwood Caverns. We were afraid that the weather wouldn't allow it, but when we got there at 3:00, the rain was just stopping. The boys had the best time, and thank goodness, Drew slept the entire time we were there! Dakota got brave and tried to dive off the diving board, but couldn't get his feet up behind him. His mama had to get up and go show him how, and even ventured to show him how to do a back dive! Wow, it's been a while for that one! Still fun, though! Then Shea talked him into trying a FLIP off the high dive! My little Dakota, flipping off the high dive! Unfortunately, though, it didn't work quite like it did off the low dive, and he landed on the back of his neck. He cried for a minute, but quickly got over it and was better. He didn't try it again, though! I told Shea that he should get up there and do a flip off of it since it was obviously no big deal, like he had convinced Dakota of! Finally, he decided to climb up that big ladder and off he goes! Except, he doesn't flip, he .... dives? Well, I'm pretty sure that's what it was SUPPOSED to be, but he flopped for sure! He said it REALLY hurt! Dillon also got brave again, several times, and jumped off the diving board. He really is becoming quite the little fish! The pool closed at 5:45, and when we were walking off, my little fuss bucket decided to wake up to eat, so we sat out by the cars for me to feed him. We hadn't been sitting there five minutes when we heard what sounded like someone approaching us through the leaves and all of a sudden, the bottom fell out!

I will try to get video on here ASAP.


My poor little Drew baby doesn't seem to be getting any better. We decided last night to go ahead and try the soy formula. All day, he was slightly fussy, but nothing like he had been, so we were excited that it might be working! When we got home and settled back in, though, the screaming started back up. I just can't understand why he is always SO fussy! Even when he isn't in obvious pain, about 75% of the time he is still fussing. Maybe as he is getting older, it is decreasing some, but not much. I have been so very patient with him until now, but it's beginning to get more and more difficult to keep my patience. There are only so many positions I can try and hold him in, and so many different formulas that I can try. I am praying every day and night that if this is only a phase, that it will end soon, and that if there is something medically wrong with him, that we can get it figured out SOON! God, please give me the patience and understanding and knowledge that I need to help him to feel better!

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Happy Birthday America!

Happy Fourth of July! I have always loved The Fourth. For my family growing up, it was always swimming and cooking out and then fireworks! My dad always made sure to talk with us about what The Fourth means. I hope to leave with my children the same memories of this holiday that I have from my childhood. We haven't been to Thunder on the Mountain the past two years. We are planning on venturing downtown tonight to watch. I am very excited to see the fireworks for myself, and also the joy on the kids' faces as they see them! This will be Dillon's first time!

This year, and from now own, though, the Fourth of July means more to our family than just a celebration of America's Independence. This year marks the one year anniversary of Shea's grandfather's passing. Shea was very close to his Papaw, and as a result, Dakota was very close to him. Mr Layton used to take Dakota to the park all the time. They would go to Sneaky Pete's and load up on hot dogs and then go to the park and eat lunch. He brought bread for Dakota to feed the fish in the creek that ran past the park.
I hope Dakota can always remember that, because I know it was very special to his Papaw. Another one of Mr Layton's favorite past times was watching Dakota play baseball. He came to every game that his health would allow and he just thought Dakota was the best little baseball player ever! When Dakota made all-stars last year, Mr Layton could not have been more pleased. Sometime around the end of regular season and the beginning of all-stars was when he was admitted to the hospital for the last time. Dakota's all-star team made the state playoffs, and they happened to be held Fourth of July weekend in Northport. We had just arrived in Northport and checked into our hotel room when our cell phone rang. It was Shea's mom telling us that his Papaw had just passed away. We had been expecting that call, so when they hung up, we made Dakota sit down on the bed in the room and told him. He knew his Papaw's time to go to Heaven was coming, but was devastated when we told him that he had passed. It was very difficult to make the decision on whether we should stay for Dakota's tournament or go back home, but after talking to Shea's family, we decided that his Papaw would have wanted us to stay where we were and let Dakota play, so we did. We still talk about "Papaw L" often and hope to keep his memory alive with Dakota. His memory will always be alive with Shea and me and the rest of his family. He was truly a wonderful man who has been and will continue to be missed.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Ready for a Vacation!

We have decided to go on our family vacation this month. I am so excited, but a little nervous about it! Shea and I have been on vacation alone, but never alone with our kids. We've always either gone with his parents or mine. I guess the only reason I'm nervous about it now is because Drew is so young. I hope hope hope that he isn't fussy the whole time we're gone. If he is, I know I will be stuck in the room with him and I will be miserable. As long as the other two have a good time, that is all that matters this year. Maybe Shea will take turns with me playing with Dakota and Dillon. Shea is more of a "get up and play" kind of parent, and I am a more "capture the moment THEN get up and play" kind. I take five thousand pictures of everything my kids do. OK, maybe not five thousand, but I do take tons! I just want to be able to look back years from now and say "Oh yeah! I forgot about that! That was a fun day!"
And I have learned that the more pictures you take, the better
chances you have at getting one good picture. People often tell me that I am a great photographer, but if you only knew how many pictures I delete...and my pictures aren't really that special, it's just that I take time with them cropping and editing them. For instance, the picture on the left, becomes the picture on the right! Not a great example, but maybe you get the gist. Anyway, Gulf Shores, here we come!


I am so proud of my little Drew-baby! I put him in his crib last night and that little stinker slept ten hours! I woke up in a panic at 7:00 this morning because he hadn't been awake yet and went running into his room. There he was, lying there sound asleep, sucking his thumb! I'm very bad about checking to make sure they're still breathing - even now with the older two - but I could see his little thumb in his mouth so I turned right back around and got back in bed! He ended up waking up about ten minutes later.

Yesterday while in the car, he figured out how to spin the little toys we have attached to his car seat! He was squealing and laughing and spinning! Dakota was really cracking up at him! I can't believe he is already ten weeks old! Almost three months old! Every day he is more alert and learns something new. I love to see him gaining control over his body to be able to put his hands where he wants them. It's just the coolest thing ever. He is just getting so big!

On a sad note, I discovered yesterday that my sweet baby is losing his hair! I was rubbing his head and when I moved my hand, I had a handful of hair! Oh well, I guess it won't be long, I'll have another cute little blond headed boy!


One of the perks of having boys is the ease of access to, so to speak. When they have to go, they can find somewhere to go pretty much anywhere. Some moms don't let their boys go outside, but I do. It made potty training so much easier and more convenient for Dillon- especially since we're always at the ball park! I only ask (require) that they HIDE somewhere when they have to go. AND it's only in an emergency situation when a restroom is not immediately available. Well a few weeks ago, I regretted this "pee outside" policy with Dillon. We were watching a baseball game at the park and the game had just gotten over. I was rounding up the kids and Shea and getting everything together when Shea said, "Look at your son!" I turned around and to my horrible disbelief, Dillon had his pants all the way to his ankles and was peeing right there in the middle of everybody! I dropped everything and ran over to him and pulled his pants up and spanked him! I think I scared him half to death, because he didn't think he was doing anything wrong and he didn't see me coming! After it was all over with, I felt bad for spanking him, because after all, I do let him go outside from time to time. I later explained to him that if he has to use the potty, he is to always come tell me or his daddy first! I was SO embarrassed that he did that! But at least he didn't potty in his pants.


It has been quite the day with Dakota. He has always been so good and polite, so these few smart-mouth episodes are killing me! Yesterday we did battle over his back talking at my mom's house. Today, he told me that the reason he did something was "because I wanted to." What am I going to do with that boy? I guess it is just something that Shea and I are going to have to deal with very sternly so that it stops as quickly as it started. I don't buy into the "it's just a phase" garbage. Yes, phases start, when they see other kids do it, but the parent is in charge of these "phases". I refuse to have a child who talks back to adults in any situation. When he said to me what he said today, about "because I want to", he got a spanking. I normally am not the spanker of the house, but since Shea is no longer working from home, I have had to step up in that area. I can't tell you how badly I hate it, but it has to be done! It's either that, or my children lose all that has been instilled in them and become brats that no one can stand to see coming! I know that now days it isn't politically correct to spank your children, but I was spanked as a child, and I think I turned out OK! Children should be disciplined - not out of anger, but out of love. Any time Dakota is spanked, we explain to him that we have to spank him because we love him. Proverbs 13:24 says: He who spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is careful to discipline him. The best place to look for parenting advice is the Bible. There are several verses that instruct parents to spank their children when they disobey. Shea and I think that it is important to not only correct your children when they are bad, but to then sit them down and explain to them why they have been corrected and what to expect if this happens again. Dakota knows that he is not to be disrespectful, but we also understand that he is a child, and doesn't always make the best decisions. It is our job to teach him how to make those decisions - a job that we take very seriously.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Boy, oh boy!

I cannot tell you how excited and pleased I have been over this new blogging thing! I have been so anxious to get on here again and try to think of something clever to post about. There is so much I want to post about, but I have to remind myself to not overdo it, for the sake of readability.


I guess I'll start with Dakota again. He is just so funny. Shea's birthday is
coming up, and I asked Dakota's opinion about what to get him. When I told him what I had in mind, his little face just lit up! Of course, he is about to bust to tell him what it is! I told him "Dakota, keep your mouth SHUT about it!" His daddy found out that we had a secret, so he was aggravating him about it and Dakota says, "Well, I'll tell you this much, it's not about your birthday!" So I look over at him and give him this look like 'you better not...' and he continues, "Well, I'll give you a hint - we're all going to go!" I said, "DAKOTA! Just quit talking!" But seriously, it's as if he can't stop talking sometimes! A couple of years ago for Christmas, we got his Pawpaw Bud (Shea's dad) a large print Bible with his name engraved on the front. After church one day before Christmas, we were eating lunch at Captain D's and we were talking about Christmas and Dakota says "I'll tell you what we DIDN'T get you, Pawpaw Bud....a new Bible with your name on it!" So we'll see if he is able to keep this secret for two more weeks! I'm really not counting on it. I've thought back to that episode of The Cosby Show where they all planned a surprise party for Cliff but didn't tell Theo because he always blew the secret. I have a feeling that's how I'm going to have to be with Dakota!

The other night we were at Shea's granny's house and Dakota was watching baseball - he has really gotten big into MLB lately. He knows most of the players and who they play for, but he noticed a player he had never seen before playing for the Braves. He said, "Daddy! The Braves have a player now with the last name 'Bat Boy'! Oh, that boy. He is just too much sometimes.


I mentioned in my previous post that Dillon just learned how to swim. I just cannot get over how brave he is and how quickly he caught on to it! I have talked leading up to this summer how I wanted him to learn how to swim since my mom has a pool. I had been worried that he would possibly fall into the pool, even though they have a gate and lock around it. When Rick Burgess' son drowned last year, it really put a fear in me about it. I think it is so important for children to know how to swim as young as possible. Someone asked Shea for some pointers on how to teach a child so young to swim, and like he told them, we don't know of any! He really just did it on his own! We took his float off of him, and were holding him the first time while he swam from me to Shea, not expecting him to really understand the concept. He put his little face under water and started kicking those feet, so the next time, I let go. He was barely an arms length away, but he did it! We backed up a little each time, and in no time, he was swimming half way across the pool, to the steps! Our next mission was to teach him what to do if he fell in the pool. We had him pretend that he fell in, by jumping in off he steps at first, and then swim to the side, and pull himself out. Then he "fell in" from the deck and practiced pulling himself out. That was my dad's idea - he's so smart. So now I feel so much better about him being around the pool, even though he still is not allowed in without floats unless an adult is in the pool watching him.

Shea's grandmother just had a mastectomy on Friday, so Thursday the boys and I took her for her preop testing. While she went to have her blood drawn, she wanted us there with her, so we all went back. Drew and Dillon had just been that Monday for their checkups and shots, so Dillon knew what was about to happen. He was sitting behind his granny in a chair and when the nurse put the blood pressure cuff on her arm, he patted her and assured her "this part doesn't hurt, Granny." Then when they went to draw her blood, he was upset for her, and wanted to hold her hand. Because he was sitting behind her, he couldn't get to her hand, so he just put both of his hands on her shoulders to comfort her. What a sweet boy.


My little Drew - such the professional thumb sucker! I am so happy that he has found something to pacify himself! It also is super cute at this age. Dillon refused the passy at first, like Drew has and I was excited when he found his thumb too. Once he was old enough to hold on to it better, I forced the passy on him by always replacing the thumb with the passy. It was never a problem with him. Those are my full intentions this time too. I pray that it is as easy with Drew as it was with Dillon.

Drew has always been the best sleeper. He has never had an issue with confusing day and nights or just not wanting to sleep. But since the beginning, he has been fussy if he is awake. I started out breastfeeding, but at four weeks, after much research, Shea and I decided that it was time to stop and try formula. I was producing too much milk, and couldn't slow it down. I read up on how when you produce too much, baby gets too much of the lactose that is found in the fore milk and not enough of the fat that is found in the hind milk, and it causes too much gas. Too much gas = tummy ache for baby. I tried what it suggested, but to no avail. The only other thing that I could have done would have been to pump every time and feed him bottles, and for our lifestyle, and the fact that I have two other children, that just wasn't feasible. We went to regular, milk based formula, and he was still fussy, but not as bad. Just this past week, we went to lactose-free milk based. The doctor suggested that he may have silent reflux (no spit up), so I thought I would try putting a little rice cereal in his bottles. Before I get lectured, let me assure you, I have read the articles about not putting cereal in their bottles now, because it might encourage overeating. My answer to that is: #1 have you seen my seven year old child? I did this with him and he's tiny; #2 a treatment for reflux is cereal in the bottle, so if he does in fact have reflux, this should help. Besides, I'm not putting much in there. I've only been doing this for two days, so I'm not sure yet if it is helping. We are sure keeping our fingers crossed though!


Since we decided to name all of our boys "D" names, I sometimes call them by the wrong name and don't catch myself. This is a terrible disease that was obviously passed on to me by my grandmother. Since I can remember, I don't think she has ever called me by my name the first time. It's always "Angie, Jodi, Shannon!" (Angie and Jodi are my female cousins on that side!) It's almost like a stutter, but instead of with sounds, it's with complete names! So, if you realize that I've done this, please correct me!!! Thanks for reading!

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

My Three Little Monkeys

I have decided to start this blog in hopes that I will each day be able to do something productive with my spare time. I do such a poor job keeping up with my children's baby books, remembering the cute things they do and say every day, and putting the thousands of pictures that I take every year to use, so maybe having a blog will help me to keep up with, remember, and use these things. I'll start by introducing my family:

Dakota is my seven year old. I was twenty-one years old and Shea and I had only been married for ten months when I had him. Needless to say, we were slightly unprepared for a baby! When Dakota was born, he was sent to NICU because his breathing was too fast. When he was four days old, the doctor informed us that while reviewing a chest x-ray to check the fluid in his lungs, she discovered a mass in his left lung. When he was nine days old, he was transported from St. Vincent's Hospital to Children's Hospital, and when he was ten days old, Dr Charles Baldwin operated on my sweet baby. Until surgery, they weren't sure what the mass was or where it came from, but once inside, they found that his liver had come across from the right side into his left lung and pushed up through his weak diaphragm. The diaphragm acted like a balloon around his liver as it pushed into his lung. Thank God there wasn't a hole there. Since God is good, and He sent us a wonderful physician, Dakota made a full recovery and came home only three days after surgery. It is hard for me to believe that my first-born is already seven years old, but I am very proud of him. He was saved and baptized when he was four years old. He made that decision completely on his own, and Shea and I could not have been more proud. He is extremely brilliant, a great athlete, a fantastic pianist, and cute to boot!

Dillon is my three year old. About a month before I gave birth to Dillon, I woke up in a complete panic, wondering how in the world I would love another child the way I loved Dakota. I really thought I had made a mistake by having another child because I didn't think it would be fair to him because there was no way I could give him all of my love. When I told my very wise grandmother-in-law this fear, she told me that she had the same fear when she was
pregnant with her second child, but that someone told her
that when you have more than one child, your love isn't divided between the two, but instead is multiplied! When Dillon was born, I understood what she meant, and realized that she was right! Dillon is my mischievous child. He is into EVERYTHING! I can't take my eyes off of him for a minute. Even though he is mischievous, he is my sweetheart. He is so loving and kind. He has the best sense of humor, and is always cracking jokes. Everything Dakota does, he wants to do too. Just last week, he taught himself how to swim. Yes! My three year old! Then Sunday, while we were at Rickwood Caverns for Dakota's baseball team party, he decided he wanted to jump off the diving board like brother. After much consideration, Shea and I decided he could try it, but only because the lifeguard was in the water waiting on him to land. He was successful in resurfacing, so we decided to let him try it on his own. We were so proud! He is so looking forward to playing soccer this year for the first time, just like his brother! I cannot wait to see the person that he becomes as he grows.

Drew is baby boy number three. As of today, he is exactly 10 weeks old. When I found out that he was going to be a "he", I was devastated and heartbroken. I can remember sitting in the waiting room after my ultrasound and trying so hard not to just sob, but the tears won and continued to stream down my face. Then I realized how incredibly selfish I was being! They hadn't just told me that my baby was sick or anything, so for me to be upset over the gender of my baby was crazy. It took a little while to get over it, but eventually I became more and more excited about not just becoming a mommy again, but also about having three boys. I was right too. Once again, my love was multiplied! Drew is so snugly and cuddly and I just love him so much! He is the best sleeper ever! We still have some tummy issues that we are sorting out, so he is a bit fussy when he is awake. Thankfully, though, it doesn't affect his sleeping. He has finally started smiling and laughing - he thinks his brothers and daddy are hilarious! He has the most beautiful and precious little smile and when he laughs we all crack up! Yesterday he learned to suck his thumb and I love it! I know - it can cause buck teeth - and I have every intention on forcing the passy on him as soon as he can figure out how to hang on to it, but for now, if he is pacifying himself I am happy. I know that he will be as sweet handsome and talented as his older brothers are. I can't wait to see it happen!

That's it! My first post! Just a peek into the world of me and my children - more to come!