Today, not only did I get to hang out with a good friend, but I also got to take a few photos of her adorable baby boy! He is 5 weeks old, which as most of you mamas know, is not an easy age. When you say that a baby only has eyes for his/her mama, I learned what you mean today. I can't wait to get a few more shots of him soon, and to hang out with his mama again!
Here are a few unedited photos of Baby "A":
And here is a shot of Everleigh:
And one of Canyon (who thanks to Marissa, is now obsessed with air planes and rockets!):
Believe it or not, Everleigh Pearl is already 2 moths old! I cannot believe how time is passing by. She is getting so big and so strong. Each day that goes by shows us what a true blessing she is. She may well be one of the happiest babies I have even seen, more so then even Rory. She doesn't fuss often, sleeps well and loves to see her brothers. Her brothers can't seem to get enough of her. They fuss with one another to see who gets to hold her first, or to kiss her, or to make her smile the most... it is an amazing dynamic.
Here are some recent photos from about a month ago until now: (Remember these are not edited and not as crisp or nice as they should be.)
Randomly appear at your house too? Because over Spring Break, they did here... I'm not sure of what they called themselves, but they sure were helpful (if you count cleaning the mess THEY made as helpful...)!
The boys are getting so big!! Rory and Arden have lost their toddler bodies and are looking like "big kids". It happens so quick! I still think of them as babies, but the reality is, they aren't anymore... Arden is actually quite muscular...
Here are a couple of CanMan, who isn't far behind his brothers, he is actually almost as tall as Arden. Don't mind the ketchup, mustard, and chocolate cake on his face, we were at a birthday party:
So, I can't believe it, but one month has come and gone since the bean graced us with her presence... Things have been crazy, she can't nurse- so we pump every feeding- this has been eating up all my time, and I am not online much... I'm trying to get lots of photos,the boys are loving her, and we are adjusting to the new version of "normal"... She is a happy little thing, smiles a lot, sleeps well, and doesn't fuss much.
Here are a few recent photos:
On a side note (because he is so excited about it) Arden won us tickets to the opening season Asheville Tourists' Game this week with a photo:
Today is the 8 year anniversary of the death of a dear dear friend. Jeffrey Allen Mayfield passed away on 4-13-2003; that day and those following weeks are something I will never forget and something that will haunt my thoughts for as long as I live.
8 years is a long time. Enough time that I am finally gaining perspective and accepting what happened.
At 21 years old, Jeff's death was the first I had ever dealt with. I had never lost a grandparent, a family member, or any other loved one. That day, I lost someone just as dear to me as a family member, someone who was a part of my life, and someone who I never expected to lose. It was something that I didn't know how to deal with; I didn't know I could hurt so much, or that I would carry that pain for so long.
8 years, and I am finally gaining some perspective, forgiving God/nature/the river/the rock, and accepting that while he is gone, part of him is still here in all of us who knew him. For the first time I am seeing things differently.
Carl and I moved not long after Jeff died, we gradually lost touch with many of our friends and those who we mourned Jeff's death with... and I regret that. We were a community who shared a loss together, who leaned on one another, who embraced, supported, and shared our love and pain together. Each year as the weather turns warmer, and Spring comes to us, I think of those people who were there over those weeks. I think of those friends I haven't seem or heard from, those we all have lost contact with, and those I still connect with... I remember the pain of 14 days of searching, I remember the relief and hurt after the recovery, and most of all, I remember Jeff.
Jeff was someone who embraced life in everything that he did. He very rarely wasn't smiling or laughing. He truly saw joy in everything about life. He could make anything funny, and make anyone feel wonderful.
The last two days I have been thinking about that trait of his, and I realized today, that I don't embrace life they way which Jeff showed us. I need to. If nothing else, his legacy to me, and my family, should be one of joy, smiles, and loving life for all it is.
Here is my promise to both myself, and the memory of Jeff... I will set aside time each day to smile, reflect, and embrace the day. I will look for the good in everything, no matter how hard it is to find, and at sometime each day, I will make time to do something that I love.
I love and miss you Jeff. The gift of life is something that I realize cannot be taken for granted, and your death/remembering your life showed me that... Thank you.
Thank you for being my friend.
Thank you for being who you were.
Thank you for showing all of us what life should and can be.
Rest in peace friend, know that you were loved, and will never be forgotten... and know that while I wrote this, while the tears roll down my cheeks, that I am smiling at your memory and remembering your smile.
After coming to terms with a late term pregnancy, and accepting the fact that my body, and the baby, know what is best, the bean decided to grace us with an appearance on Friday, March 11th. She was earlier than her brothers, and her appearance was quite quick. My entire labor was only about 2.5 hours!
Please excuse the typos, run on sentences, and outright mess this blog post consists of! The bean is currently having nursing issues so we are exhausted. I wanted to get this all down before I forget due to lack of sleep and passing time.
On Friday morning, March 11th, I got up at 6:30, to the normal routine of getting 2 of the boys out the door to school, one more boy tagging along, and Carl off to work. Canyon and I took Rory to school, picked up our car-pool friends along the way, and dropped everyone off at school at 8:30. Afterward, I had a chiropractic appointment, and was a little early, so I decided to sit in the car reading with Canyon for a while. While we were sitting there, I realized how tired I was, so I called into the office, and let them know I wasn’t feeling great, and was going to cancel the appointment, I was actually falling asleep in the drive waiting.
I got home around 9:30, did a few dishes, made some snacks for Canyon and then my father showed up. He lives 6 hours away, but decided to drop by on his way home from a visit to my grandparents in Illinois. After he left, I decided to take a nap while Canyon watched a movie. At 12 on the nose, Canyon woke me up wanting lunch, so we made him PBJ and pickles, (who knew, but apparently, this makes you the “best mommy ever”).
After going to the bathroom, answering a few phone calls, and laying back down, I realized that I had some bloody mucus here and there since I had woken at 6:30, and that it was continuing. I decided to text the doctor, David, to let him have a heads up, just in case something happened (I have never had bloody mucus before, so I figured it might be a sign). I don’t know why, but I felt uneasy so I called and asked Carl to go get Rory from school and to come home. I started filling the birth tub, although I didn’t have a reason to, there were no signs of pending labor, and nothing was happening.
When Carl got home, I realized I was having a few contractions here and there, nothing much. Rory didn’t understand why we had gotten him from school until I told him we thought that today might be the baby’s birthday. At 1:45 or so I realized the contractions were consistent, so I sent out a text to let people know not to call me and that this might be time.
At 2:15 I started to throw a fit because the birth tub was cold, and I needed in… in hindsight, I realize that I was in labor at that point, but in the moment, I wasn’t thinking clearly and must have looked like a lunatic, lol.
Carl offered right there to call David, and I told him no, that I wasn’t in labor yet, that I wanted to wait and see. Being the wonderful husband that he is, Carl just raised his eyebrows at me and said ok. I decided to get into the cold tub anyhow, and Rory staked his claim on the bed next to the tub. Canyon decided a bit later to get on the bed too and to sit and watch mom. In the meantime, Carl began boiling water and adding it to the tub.
At 2:30 Carl decided that he was going to call David, whether or not I agreed, which at that point I decided that maybe he should start making his way to us. It didn’t take long after that call for the contractions to start stacking, and we realized this birth wasn’t going to be as lengthy as the others. I called my photographer friend to come, but she couldn’t until her DH came home from work.
At about 3, things were getting intense; Carl, who was boiling water between contractions, and holding me during them, decided to call David again and said, “Hey David, how about coming to catch a baby? I think you should get here, pretty soon.”
At 3:30, my neighbor Tracy brought Arden home from school, and thankfully took Canyon to her house. Labor had gotten intense and Canyon’s energy (and jumping on the bed/being loud) was not allowing me to relax or concentrate like I needed to.
The contractions were stacking on top of each other, Rory had been laying in the bed trying to time them, but was having a hard time since I wasn’t telling him to start and stop, lol. He kept asking when to hit the button, and I finally told him it didn’t matter, that once they were this close, they didn’t need to be timed.
At 3:45 David arrives, and much to my pleasure (and surprise), he brings Ann, one of my midwives from my last birth, in with him! She had been in his office for an appointment and when she found out it was me, was delighted to come out to the birth. When she came in, I told her "this is a lot more intense than last time!"
The contractions were no longer giving space between them, and I am going to leave out a few of the grosser parts of what happened here, but things were really progressing and intense. I do have to say, that while I gave Rory and Arden every detail I could think of in an attempt to prepare them, I had left out a few
At just about 4, I started to push. First her head came out into my hand, and then I remember feeling her slide gently through my hands, and at 4:17 my beautiful little girl, Everleigh Pearl, was born into my hands, underwater, while her brothers watched from the bed and her father supported me.
My water didn’t break right away, and broke on my last push, so when she came out of the water, she didn’t have the “clean” look her brother had, she was white and slimy. The boys thought this was interesting and had a lot of questions.
She cried about 30 seconds later, and was perfect. She pinked up quickly, and was beautiful.
This is a photo from about 12:30 that day: My last belly shot that I took on a whim:
Here are some photos from my "birth photographer" (my 7yo son). Sonya (the real birth photographer) missed the birth by a little over an hour or so.
This shot is during the last minutes of labor, Rory and Arden were sitting on the bed watching:
This is just seconds after lifting Everleigh from the water:
A few moments later:
After about an hour and a bit, Arden cut the cord, and then he and Rory took turns holding their new sister:
Here are a few shots Sonya took after she arrived, about an hour and a half after the birth:
And here are a few more that I have taken over the last 2 weeks: