I’d completely forgotten about free days at the zoo–the last Wednesday of the month, November through February. Someone reminded me about them a few weeks ago so I decided we should go last Wednesday since it was our last chance this winter. Because it would get us out of the house. Because we’ve hardly been on any outings in months. Because it was going to be in the 60s that day. Whoa, wait, what? 60 degrees in Utah in February?! Crazy weather we’ve been having! But I wanted to get out and enjoy it!
Unfortunately about 20,000 other people had the same idea. The zoo was crazy! I knew it would be crazy when I saw cars parked on the street practically back to Foothill Drive. These cars couldn’t all be for people going to the zoo, could they? Well, yes, they could be. But we had five children loaded in the van and we were not about to turn around and go back home. We were going to the zoo!
Funny thing about this outing–I decided to make it a surprise, but then I accidentally mentioned it to E, who said, “What’s the zoo?” We discovered that he’s never been to the zoo! I’m positive we’ve been sometime in the past four years, but he’s just as adamant that he’s never been there before.
After driving around the parking lots and stalking quite a few people leaving the zoo only to have other cars grab their parking spots ahead of us, we finally lucked out and got a space in the upper parking lot. The only bad thing about parking up there is that you have to hike back up that hill to get back to your car. But it’s amazing how easy that is now that I’m no longer pregnant! I’d forgotten what it was like to move like a normal person again.
So by the time we finally maneuvered our way into the zoo, Baby A needed to nurse, so I found a place to park the two of us and sent the four boys to see the giraffes and the reptile house together. I sent my camera with them and I think D used it the most. I got back lots of pictures like this:
But there were a few of snakes:
The older boys had told E that there was a train to ride at the zoo and that was what he was most excited about. Of course once inside, we found out that they’re building a new exhibit for the African savanna animals and the train was closed. And that one little fact ruined E’s entire day. He moaned and groaned and complained and was seriously grumpy about everything else for the rest of the afternoon. He rode on the back of the double stroller and hardly even wanted to get off and look at any of the other animals. Granted, there were hordes of people everywhere and it was hard to see many of the animals, but still. I finally got one little smile from him on the carousel.
At the end of the day, he said he’d had a good time, but I’m not so sure. We’ll have to go back when the train is open again and we don’t have to fight so many crowds.
Baby A tolerated it fairly well. (Love the double chin!)
The other three boys had a great time. It was truly a beautiful day and it was so good to get out and walk around in the fresh air and well, not be pregnant anymore! I haven’t enjoyed an outing like that in about nine months!
E, of course, didn’t want to be in the last picture. I’m finding out just how hard it is to get a good picture of all five of them.
I started blogging!
That was then (shortly before the blog beginning):
This is now:
What a difference! I’m so glad I started this little journey to chronicle our life and learning adventures. It’s always fun to read back through and remember some of the fun times we’ve had (as well as some of the not so fun!) and see how far we’ve come and how much we’ve grown.
I also feel privileged to have made some wonderful friends through this blog. Thank you for reading and for your kind comments. I enjoy our interaction.
Here’s to another seven years!
It’s hard to believe it’s already been a month since we welcomed this little sweetheart into our lives!
And she is such a sweetheart . . . even when she’s screaming at me. Much of her one-month birthday on Friday was spent like this:
I don’t know why; some days are just like that! (For me too!) Mostly though, she is calm and mellow and happy, as am I. Here are a few more of our favorite photos from the past couple weeks:
Her eyes have decided to be blue, at least for now, and it’s amazing how much she looks like her brothers at this age. We’ve spent a lot of time lately looking back through their baby pictures. Well, at least most of their pictures. Poor A–the pre-digital camera baby. We’d have to pull out actual photos to look at him as a baby, and I just packed them away and don’t feel inclined to pull them back out again.
My mother asked me if it was any different to have a girl. So far . . . not really. Like most babies, she spends her days eating, sleeping, and pooping (although she seems only to do that at night when Daddy changes her; I’ve hardly seen a dirty diaper.)
Yet when I think about her, or look deeply into her eyes, I know she’s different. She’s my daughter! My long-awaited, much hoped for little girl. And it’s amazing to me to see all her perfect little parts and pieces and wonder at her potential. We all adore this little sweetheart and have appreciated having someone so fresh from heaven in our home the past few weeks.
*Typing While Nursing
Quick, finish this blog post before Baby A wakes up!
Too late . . .
And typing one-handed while nursing is so obnoxious. I’ve actually gotten back into indexing family history records. I can stand to peck out names with one hand, but trying to type anything that requires stringing words together into coherent thoughts, while I’m fairly sleep deprived besides, is a ridiculous endeavor. So much for my new year’s goal to blog more!
Maybe when we’re sleeping more. Or DH is home. Actually that’s why I’m sitting here typing this now; DH is home after working 18 of the last 24 hours and is spending time with his little sweetheart, trying to get her to go to sleep while he struggles to stay awake. If only they could just trade places . . .
Thank goodness Monday is a holiday and he is off work. It’s actually his birthday today, but after working his usual weekend shifts plus one extra for someone else with only about four hours of sleep in between, he’s wants to celebrate when he can actually enjoy it.
We did surprise him with his favorite salmon for dinner though and cards from the boys. He said not to buy him anything as giving birth to his daughter counts as the best gift for this birthday and the next several holidays as well. Which is just fine with me because who’s had time to shop lately?
Speaking of his daughter, I think she has been going through a growth spurt this week. (3 weeks old? That sounds about right!) She’s been eating and eating and eating! And she’s not the efficient little nurser some of her brothers have been–15 minutes and done. No, she’s content to keep suckling for a good 45 minutes and loves to snuggle even more besides. Needless to say, I spend a lot of time sitting here in this recliner with her. And I’m (mostly) content to do so. Except when I have things I want to say and can’t type them out easily!
So we take pictures instead. Yesterday we wanted to get a picture of little A in her red and pink heart outfit for Valentine’s Day. Here is our sweet Valentine:
We were about ready to settle for our grumpy Valentine. She was pretty grumpy most of the day, but we finally got her wide awake and in a very mellow mood in the afternoon. Thank goodness for digital cameras. It took about 27 shots to come up with a few good ones!
Hopefully I can write some more of my thoughts this weekend when DH is home. If not, here are a few of the things I’m pondering:
- Why I want to claw my skin off
- Why I’m back in the family history research mood (Hint: Rootstech!)
- Will we ever find our homeschool groove again?
- Why is it so sad when babies start to grow out of their teeny tiny clothes???
My how time is flying! This girl is a snuggler, and even with four brothers who are constantly wanting to hold her, it still feels like my arms are always full of baby and not much else these days. Luckily I don’t have any other big plans or high expectations at the moment. We’re simply trying to get through each day.
Using initials on the blog for this baby is problematic because I already have an A, the 13-year-old A, so maybe we’ll just call her Little Missy as that seems to be our favorite nickname for her at the moment.
So Little Missy (LM) is two weeks old! We went to the doctor again yesterday (we were there last week for a jaundice checkup) and she’s back up to her birth weight of 6 lbs 3 oz, after dipping down to 5 lbs 14 oz last week. The nurse said she was 20 inches long, but I think LM had slid down the ruler a bit. The nurse was in a hurry to weigh and measure her because LM was exceedingly ornery and screaming after having had her heel pricked for the newborn screening bloodtest. I was glad DH was there with me to hold her through that.
Can I just say the boys absolutely adore their little sister? They’re forever taking pictures of her. My camera is filled with pictures of her propped up on pillows and in the boys’ arms. They’re pretty good about sharing; we’ve only had a few arguments over “It’s my turn to hold her!” She gets passed around a lot, but she doesn’t seem to mind.
She especially likes to snuggle up on C’s chest. She likes to suck too–he was holding her the other day and suddenly said, “Aggghh! She’s sucking on my sleeve. It’s all wet!”
E has been so good with her. He’s fascinated by everything she does. The first day I sat down to feed her, he ran and got a jar of baby food I had from one of my baby showers. I had to explain that she can’t eat food yet. ”Then what does she eat?” he wanted to know. I told him she only eats milk right now. He had to correct me. ”You driiiiiink milk. You don’t eat it,” he said. He still gets confused if I mention the baby needs to “eat.”
He likes to point out all her little body parts, and also wanted to know if she had a penis . . .
Her only other issue appears to be some clogged tear ducts, just like E had. We’re just hoping hers won’t take eight months to clear up. We seem to have made it through the boys’ sicknesses unscathed, which is probably a miracle, because I’ve been a lot less fanatic about hand washing than I probably could have been.
Our pediatrician told us that when he and his wife brought their last child home, they created a clean room environment that the baby stayed in. He didn’t leave that room and none of the other children could go in without face masks and hand sanitizer, and if they’d been anywhere like soccer practice, or to church around other children, they had to change their clothes before they could go in to the new baby. I can’t even imagine pulling that off at our house! First off, our house is too small. And I don’t think I could be that diligent! A little dirt is ok, right? I’ve never been germ phobic. For all my winter babies, including a preemie, we’ve never had any illnesses in our newborns. Knock on wood . . .
We’re all going a little stir crazy from being cooped up inside though. With E and then everyone else being sick, we’ve hardly been anywhere since New Year’s. I’m not crazy about going out in the cold with the baby, but at least we’re not getting dumped on with snow like so many other places. We’ve had blue skies this week and I’ve been sending the boys outside to play a lot. I’m looking forward to getting out more myself. I’ve been pretty sedentary this entire pregnancy and I need to get moving.
Saturday (38 weeks pregnant):
We had a baby!
Little Miss A
Born January 21, 2014
6 lbs. 3 oz.
17.5 inches long
She’s a tiny little thing!
Apparently she has some dimples!
When 3 of your 4 brothers are sick–face masks in the hospital. I think C was just wearing one for solidarity.
Wednesday–Wondering who all these crazy boys in my room are:
Thursday, when we obviously did not coordinate our going home from the hospital outfits:
Bundled up, ready to go:
She has dark hair! We’ll see if it lasts. Three of her four grandparents and three aunts all have dark hair. We can’t figure out her eye color; it’s either blue, brown, or gray depending on the light and the day.
E is a big brother for the first time, and very excited about it! She’s not quite so sure about this arrangement.
Friday: no pictures, just a trip back to the hospital for bloodwork. She’s a little jaundiced.
Saturday, just hanging out:
What a week!