Cayucos by the sea

So. If you’ve missed my instagram pictures, we’re in California. Insert high fives and praise hands.

It was a bit spur the moment but I’m incredibly thankful we said what the heck, let’s do it. It really would have been an epic travel day but winter storm Stella snowed in our plane from Pennsylvania so we spent three hours in the Charlottesville airport and five in Los Angeles. Ugh. But it still went pretty darn well as far as the children go and so we’ll just be thankful.

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And then, hallelujah, we were there. And that first day was such a stunner and Wes was like, today has already made yesterday worth it. And it’s true. We’re headed into some cloudy weather but our first few days were spectacular and the kids have been having a riot and it’s just wonderful.

Jack bebops all over the backyard and a couple other people’s backyards and goes up and down the stairs accompanied by the faithful Cody, picking flowers and telling himself not to pick flowers.img_6029img_6027img_6034img_6016img_6020

Ev hops everywhere with an occasional skip thrown in. I’m getting a little nervous that my three year old can possibly outrun me. Both kids love the water and we all freeze our toes off.img_1526

And most days have ended with them in this bucket and all the heart eyes come out.

It’s been a fabulous few days.

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Through the window

I spend a lot of time looking out our windows. When it’s too cold to have Ivy outside but warm enough to send the kids out, I bundle them up and shoo them out and sit back and enjoy the show. They come back in about every five minutes to ask for donuts and I shoo them back out. Occasionally I have to bark out the door when Jack becomes overly affectionate to Gladys but much of the time I just watch with an amused expression at the conversations that are taking place.

I can’t hear a word they’re saying but Ev always has lots of ideas and things to say and while Jack doesn’t use words to converse, he definitely can get his point across. The other day, she decided she needed his help to get off the slide and all I saw was a hand emerge. Jack stared at it for a bit, like, what are you doing? But then he finally got, clasped her hand, and pulled. And when she stood up with his help you’d have thought he’d been given the world, such was his delight. And so, diligent son that he is, he waited at the bottom of the slide as she continued to go up and down, always there to lend a helping hand with the biggest grin on his face.

It’s even better when Wes is home. Jack never stops running. Just as soon as he’s caught up with Wes in one area of the yard, Wes takes off to go get more sticks/pine needles/whatever. Jack’s legs work double time as soon as he realizes Wes has moved on and I just love to watch from my stadium seat. And then there’s watching for Dad to come home. Best part of the day. I love the looks on their faces when they realize its his car. And they run to his door, get in, Jack honks the horn, Ev asks for gum and I smile as I pass the baton.

Ah. Did I mention best part of the day?

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It’s March!

Woot!! Although I’ve been happy dancing through February, even performing a few cartwheels for my IG friends because of how stupendous the weather has been. It is seriously life transforming to get the kids outside. My house stays much more intact, so does my brain, and there’s nothing like watching your kids just run. So all sorts of praises for mild winters.

Not much in the blog world for a couple of obvious reasons. If the stars align, I can occasionally get all three kids to nap together in the afternoon. Sometimes this gives me 30 minutes to myself, sometimes two hours, and once or twice, three hours (gasp). It’s the most magical thing ever and I find myself dancing around the house in glee.

And there’s a couple things that are always on the docket if I do get myself this time. I’m a new Yoga aficionado. I’m doing Yoga with Adriene  and I’m kinda loving it. It makes me be still and thoughtfully exercise instead of trying to cram through a workout, going as fast as possible because who know when chaos will wake up. And so along with renewing the body, I’m soaking up some Psalms or pondering my armor of God study and so this renewing of this spirit, soul, mind and body then leads to the dance parties around the house.

And then usually the house wakes up and so blogging definitely is on the back burner.

I mentioned my dad was coming last blog post. That was such an incredible boost. I got to go out (with Ivy) and eat a slow paced dinner (she slept with Poppi the entire time), one on one with my dad (adult conversation!) for the first time in forever. Then he was just at my house for 2 days and it was just swell. A real mid winter, 3 kid boost.

And since that last post, Ev and I have spent a lot of time discussing the making good decisions and good ideas versus bad ideas. So thankfully, we haven’t had a repeat kitchen incidence. Just more like them thundering up the stairs, Ev leading the charge, ‘Hey mom! Can we eat these?’. And while she’s waving my chocolate covered caramel filled candies that I thought were hidden from Trader Joes, Jack’s grinning with chocolate drool coming out of his face.

haha.

Ivy’s doing well, just checked in at 10 pounds 4 oz at her 2 month check up. I believe she’s my earliest smiler and is just pretty sweet all around. She is very well doted upon and generally takes it pretty well, although I think she already knows when it’s Jack holding her and begins to protest.

Gosh. The things they find to entertain themselves with and their joy filled expressions just make my day.

Thankful heart.

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this will be funny one day.

At least I hope so.

Just in case you think things run a bit too smoothly over here…

The day began at 6:47 and by the time 10:06 rolled around, I was very ready for Ivy to take a nap and for me to get out of my robe.

So I went upstairs to lay Ivy down. She immediately started crying but I decided I needed to go brush my teeth and get ready for the day to better prepare myself mentally for any coming chaos.

I kept thinking she was putting herself to sleep but 7 minutes later, picked her back up and rocked her to sleep. About this time, the toddlers ran upstairs to join me. They’ve been rather clingy with colds and I’ve told them about 100 times today, ‘guys. Go play.’

I put Ivy back down, took some laundry to Jacks room and heard a funny noise from downstairs.

As I headed down, I decided that someone had turned the kitchen aid on but when I rounded the corner to kitchen I forgot about the kitchen aid because my attention was caught by the pool of milk on the floor. And on the counter. And by the coffee grounds strewn over in the corner by the espresso machine. I steamed.

Then headed back to the stairs and said, ‘Evelyn. Get down here right now.’

Then went back to the kitchen to start rinsing wash rags for her to clean up the milk.

Then I noticed the empty juice container. And the full solo cups.

And the bread that had been rising on the stove? A nice gaping hole in it.

Truly. Every area in the kitchen had been decimated. Hashtag so annoyed.

By the time Evelyn was vacuuming up the coffee (praise the Lord I had emptied the container yesterday), and I was punching the bread down so it could re rise, Ivy was crying again and I was doing Lamaze breathing.

Oh these darlings of mine.dsc_0037I mean really, isn’t it hard to picture these faces as the masters of mayhem? (Thanks to KPerry Photography).

But really. Here’s to long naps and some time to collect my brain.

Hallelujah, my dad comes in tonight.

And the weekend draweth nigh.

Praise hands.

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the first few weeks.

So this morning, Ev and I were unloading the dishwasher and I randomly burst into this kids song ‘To love and obey’, that I haven’t thought of in years and was like ‘whoa, where’d that come from.’ We’ve been working on the concept of obeying the first time and so I sang it about 100 times and then googled it to see if I could find some kids singing it for her. And google pulled my blog up with this post from four years ago. Which startled me, and then amused me and then led me on a wild goose chase around my blog reading stuff from four years ago.

I really can’t tell you how much I amuse myself. hahaha.

But. Moving from 2013 to 2017.

So, my parents arrived the day Ivy and I came home from the hospital and stayed for two weeks, (praise the Lord).

That first week home I pretty much stayed upstairs in my room, avoiding the stairs and held Ivy. One of the things I was so concerned about was how I was going to give Jack what he needed after a cesarean. Jack’s very much hands on and craves lots of affection. And he’s a lug. But I barely saw him those days. He’d occasionally come in for drive bys but then would motor off to go bang around in the kitchen with Poppi or read books with Megee or who knows what.

It was little miss Ev who’d come find me and sit in the chair next to me and visit and visit and visit some more. Every day for weeks, she’d ask me how my owie was doing and if it was all better and tell me she’s sorry I have an owie. And then at night, Wes would come back from tucking her in and tell me she was praying for my owie. So maybe faith like a child helped? Because this recovery has been so much better than Ev’s. It’s probably a lot of mental stuff. I knew what to expect  and gave myself lots of grace for doing nothing. So thank you fellow prayer people for praying peace over me.

So. By week two, I was downstairs and a bit more engaged in life around me and was like oh. my. gosh. How on earth am I going to survive when my parents leave. From my vantage point on the couch it was essentially taking four adults to take care of three children and the house. And I was like, next week, this is all me? What?! So I just tried not to think of it. But seriously, just the amount of laundry going on was overwhelming.

Ah.  But it was such a great two weeks. So incredibly thankful for Wesley’s parents and mine and all the help given. It made such a huge impact on my first week by myself which went astonishingly well. Mainly because I had all that time to rest, Ivy was giving me decent sleep, and Ev and Jack blew me away with how well they entertained each other after having grandparents on hand for three weeks. They just played together and had the best of times!

I mean yes, the amount of times I found Ev changing Jacks diaper was a couple times too many, or the toilet scrubber in the toilet with toilet paper everywhere…Or the bathroom/kitchen floor sopping wet from them playing in the faucet..or the coffee grounds all over from them making coffees…or…you get the idea. But I haven’t had three children hanging on me and that’s new and unusual. Praises.

So now. Here’s what some of this looked like.

Good days. Blessed days. 

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ev and jack meet ivy

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Oh gosh, these pictures just make my day. One of the greater joys in life is introducing your kids to each other. Nothing like the excitement, the shining eyes, and the touch of uncertainty that melts into adoration.

Ev had no hesitation and hopped right on the bed to hold the Ivy. Jack was a little unsure the first day but by visit number two he was pretty much like, ‘give me the baby’, as you can see demonstrated in the first picture.

Hospital visits were a bit more chaotic this time with the little darlings and I was definitely ready to boot them out the door a time or two but gosh. These were some great days.

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some more stories

My mind, and probably my last epistle, couldn’t hold all the stories from Ivy’s arrival, so here’s a few more great ones.

Starting with the night before Ivy was born…If you recall, I was feeling like my body was turning into a slide. We were on the way home somewhat late at night and out of the quiet darkness pipes Evelyn.

‘Hey Dad, did you know mom’s pelvis is about to come apart?’.

Pretty sure I burst out laughing and definitely snorted.

Moving on to the next day. I was still in the operating room and Wes and Ivy had departed to the nursery when my doctor chuckled and said, ‘Well Kelsey, do you want to tell them all what you did to me on Wednesday?’.

Ahh. It was pretty funny. Wes and I arrived at the doctors office and sat in the waiting room with four other couples, all who were waiting to see the same doctor. And so we waited and waited and about thirty minutes later, finally got to a room and did the initial check up with the nurse and then waited some more. I figured that my doctor might enjoy a laugh (he always has a perpetually smirk on his face but I don’t think I’d ever got him to laugh) since running 40 minutes behind can’t be too enjoyable, and that there was no time like the present to try to flip baby. And so I pulled out the ‘foot tray’ and repositioned the pillow to be under my hips and then laid upside down on the examination table in a nice inverted position.

I laid there a long time, long enough for blood to be pretty lodged in my head but it was so worth it. My quiet, calm doctor opened the door and immediately burst out laughing. ‘Oh Kelsey, thank you. I needed that today. (snicker snicker) That was definitely a first. (chuckle chuckle)’. And he couldn’t get past it. We’d be visiting and he’d shake his head and say, ‘it’s going to be a long time before I get that image out of my mind.’

And he was still chuckling on Friday, ‘I’ve just never seen anyone’s head between the stirrups before.’

Bahahaha. Oh I do enjoy a good laugh.

Moving on to a completely different note. A definite hospital highlight.

Two days after Ivy was born, I figured I try to go walk the hallways. I made it from my bed to the bathroom and back and was like, mmm, not ready to take on the hallways. So I collapsed onto the couch and did some back exercises. But I kept hearing something.

I finally asked, ‘Wes, is that people singing or someone’s music?’.

Wes was real busy on his computer and holding Ivy and didn’t have much of an opinion. I was pretty convinced it was singing so I found a fitted sheet, wrapped it around myself and popped my head out the door. And sure enough, a group of twelve or so people ages 10-80 were down the hall singing hymns!

I immediately began the quest to find some pants because I was definitely going to be joining them. I pulled on one pair and they fit right on my incision so those came right off. I was rummaging around in my bag real awkwardly bent over (Wes was still real busy, haha), when I heard them walking by my room saying, ‘Well, I think someone stuck their head out here’. But they kept walking.

And I was like, I am not missing out on singing songs about Jesus with these people just because I can’t find pants! Who needs those anyway?!

So back went the fitted sheet around my waist and out I popped again to join them as they sang down the hall. They saw me come out and walked back towards me and we all finished the song together and smiled and started another. I motioned Wes out and he and Ivy joined in. Wes handed Ivy to the 80 year old lady who was being pushed in a wheel chair and at the end of the song she announced that she wanted to pray for this child. And we closed our eyes and she prayed the sweetest simplest prayer over Ivy. I had to keep my eyes closed because of all the tears coming down and was finally able to join in on the last verse of Silent Night.

And we exchanged a few more words and smiles and it was one of the best moments of church all year. Sweet communion in hospital corridors.

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More coming on the two goobers meeting Ivy.

Hugs and love.

 

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