Friday, September 17, 2010

5 days to go!

Can't believe I am coming to the end of my first pregnancy, expectantly awaiting the arrival of my first child!! WOW! It has just flown by and I know the days, weeks, and years ahead will go by just as quickly. Our life truly is a vapor that appears for a little while then vanishes away, as the Lord says in His Word. But I am trying to embrace every day, every new things, each change and enjoy it and remember and cherish it! I don't want to ever hold too tightly to the past that I cannot enjoy today or look forward to the future!

Baby is still in breech position, so the doctor has scheduled us in for a cesarean on Wed. Sept 22nd at 7:30am. So unless he/she moves into the correct position before then, we will have a baby on Wed! I am very excited about it and frankly am really ready to have this one! Because his/her head is up there is a lot of pressure on my upper tummy and it is getting more and more uncomfortable to carry this one each day! But I am SO thankful that I have not had any major complications other than the breech and baby and I are both very healthy. The doctor even checked my cervix to see how I was doing for future VBAC and I am already 3cm dilated, so if baby was head down I would be ahead of the game for labor. But God knows what He is doing and I am continually reminded of His care and love for me every day!

And through all of this I have the most wonderful, supportive and godly husband who has encouraged me each step of the way! God truly blessed me with Stephen and I thank the Lord for him every day! He truly is my best friend, my confidant, my companion, my leader, and my lover! And he was SO worth the wait!!! We are just such a blessed couple and soon to be family of our own! It is wonderful how God designed all this, to leave father and mother, cleave to each other and weave our lives together, starting another generation for His glory!! May the Lord protect our home and make us godly companions and parents!

Friday, September 3, 2010

External Cephalic Version

Well, yesterday was full of "first's" for me at the hospital. I've never had a broken bone, a bad tooth, or anything that was necessary for me to be admitted to the hospital so this was all new for me. But all that changed and I now have a better appreciate for what people go through in the hospital. Our baby is still breech and so our doctor advised us going through with an external cephalic version in which he would try to rotate the baby into the correct head down position by pressing on my belly. So yesterday was the day and this is our story.

We woke up VERY early 4:45am and got ready to arrive at the hospital, Erlanger downtown, at 6am, only to find the Labor and Delivery ward in lock down. They have a new system that locks them down if a baby's tag is missing from the ward or if some other security problems occur. So we waited in the stairwell for 10 mins and were finally admitted. Because things were now running behind there was a flurry of nurses directing us to our room, asking me lots of questions and getting things started. One nurse needed to take 2 vials of blood for lab work for the anesthesia I would be getting, and as seems to be usual for me, took her two attempts with the last being in my hand and very painful. Another nurse was asking me a truck load of questions as she typed the answers in on the computer, I'm guessing for my file. Then another nurse started putting in an I.V. in my other arm from the nurse with the blood vials. This was a first for me and also very painful. I'm not a fan of needles in general, but I soon found out that was the order of the day!

The anesthesiologist came into the room and asked more questions, one being if we had eaten that morning. No one at the doctor's office had told us we shouldn't eat. We had had some breakfast and he said that since we had eaten he advised us not getting the anesthetic until my stomach was empty, just as a precaution against any problems. Our doctor, Dr. Barker, then came into the room, wheeling the ultra-sound machine in with him. He checked baby and sure enough, baby was still head up breech. He then talked with the anesthesiologist about the food issue, didn't really agree with him, but still decided to go with his recommendation and the version was re-scheduled for 12noon.

So we had 4-5 hrs of waiting in the hospital for the procedure. We both tried to sleep, or nap some, but had a few interruptions from a nurse and phone calls. Then we watched some TV, the Food Network which probably wasn't a good idea for two very hungry people, until it was time to get the show all rolling again for noon.

Our nurse came in and re-hooked me up to the I.V. After a few mins I was shivering again as I had done that morning and I asked her if it was the I.V. that was making me cold and she said it was. Again this was all new to me. So she brought me a warm blanket which helped. Then the anesthesiologist and assistant came in to put in the spinal anesthetic. I was told to sit Indian style on the bed with my back bowed out. Then when they started to inject me she said it would feel like a really big bee sting. Oh my, bee sting indeed, it hurt something awful and I was a big baby and cried! Then they decided to put the epidural catheter in just in case something should happen during the procedure and they need to take me for an emergency C-section. I could feel the little tube going in, a very strange sensation and then she said to expect a feeling like an electric shock in my leg which I did immediately! It was all a bit un-nerving for me, but I tried to just hang in there and it was done and I was on by back again. I could start feeling a very warm sensation going down my legs. Then my nurse put in a catheter for my urine, which was equally as awful and a first time for me with that too!! Dr. Barker came in and was talking to us a little and mentioned that he met a colleague who was a 'high-risk pregnancy' doctor and had lots of experience in turning babies. So he was going to come in as well to see if he could help with the procedure. By this time I was feeling lots of itching in my chest, back and legs, and told my doctor who looked to see how I was doing, but it started to go away.

Then they started the procedure. They lowered the upper part of the bed so my hips were higher than my head to get baby to move out of my pelvis and try to turn. He tried turning the baby to the left first, didn't work, then tried to the right, and again didn't work. Then the other doctor came in and discussed some things and he tried quite a few times. They kept saying that my uterus is just very narrow and my abs were very tight and wondered if I worked out a lot or did sports to which I laughed!!!!! At least I know I have tight abs! Anyway it seems there is not enough room in there to get the baby's head started down and his/her hips out of my pelvis. So after quite a few tries they decided it wasn't going to happen. The nurses all said that this other doctor was very good and if he couldn't move the baby then the chances are no one else could either. So we were thankful we had him too. I was initially disappointed, but I know they did all they could and it truly is in the Lord's hands. Baby could still move into position on his/her own if they can tuck up tighter to turn so we will have to see.

Then it was waiting time for the anesthesia to wear off. It was about 30 mins after the procedure that it started and this was the worse thing yet! I started shaking, had been doing so anyway from the IV, but this was worse and the itching started. It was like chicken pox itching times 10!! It was so bad, it was like a burning severe itch and the shaking was getting worse too. So Stephen called the nurse in and she gave me a narcotic to help with the itching and shaking and within 30 seconds I was drugged up and nearly asleep. I could still feel some itching, but nothing compared to what I had done.

During all this time, Stephen was by my side supporting me, holding my hand or resting his hand on my shoulder. I was probably squeezing his hand blue when they put the spinal injection in and he was there to wipe my tears. I truly have the best husband in the world, so supportive and caring.!

We had to stay at the hospital until the spinal and the narcotic wore off and I could walk and go to the bathroom. We were finally out of there by 4:30pm. Then while were were eating dinner that night I remembered that the nurse was supposed to give me another rhogam injection for my blood type issue, and she hadn't. So we called the doctor's office when we got home and talked to the on-call doctor. He called the hospital and talked with our nurse and sure enough she had forgotten to give it to us. So he said to come in the next day to the office and get it there. So this morning we did just that, back downtown again to get yet another shot!!

It was one long day and pretty traumatic for me, but Stephen said I did a good job and it was worth it to at least try to see if the doctor could get baby moved. If we hadn't tried it and baby doesn't ever move on his/her own, we would have always wondered if it might have worked and wished we did. This also was good prep for me in case I do have to have a cesarean, which is looking more likely. My biggest concern was my reaction to the anesthetic so we will discuss all this with Dr. Barker at our next visit and see what he says. For now, we are trusting the Lord and thanking Him for all His blessings and for helping me through yesterday.

Thanks to everyone who is praying for us, we really need the continued prayer these next couple of weeks and for wisdom and guidance and peace! We know God has everything under control!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Week 35

It's getting closer now to baby's arrival and we are very excited and getting a little anxious! Stephen and I went to our doctor's appointment yesterday to 'see' baby and what is happening so far. We do have one issue that baby is still breech, jack-knifed at the moment. The doctor started talking to us about possible things that may need to happen if baby does not move into the correct, head down position on his/her own. When he mentioned cesarean I started getting a little panicked. It shook me up a bit, but I know that the Lord is in control and will work things out. I've had some good friends tell me that there is still time for the baby to move on his/her own and we are also trying to do some exercises to help the baby move too. The doctor can also do a procedure to move the baby, so I know the Lord will work it all out. We are so thankful for all our blessings and I just pray we have a healthy, happy baby no matter how they come into this world!

We had a lovely family and friends baby shower over the weekend and were blessed again with so much love and support and some lovely gifts for the baby. We both are very humbled by the love shown by others and I am reminded every day of God's blessings! I've now got the baby bedding in on the crib (cot) and washing some more baby clothes ready for the little one's arrival in a few weeks. I need to purchase a few more things for myself ready for feeding baby, but we're just about ready for the appearance of our child. Wow! When I think about the fact that this baby is part of me it is just miraculous! I've held other people's babies and enjoyed them, but I know this will be so very precious and special because he/she will be mine!

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Feeling Creative

I've been planning so many craft projects lately and really enjoying doing them all! The only thing I can think of is that it must be part of my 'nesting' at the moment for baby coming. Anyway, I'm finding so many fun things to do for baby and for other too.I found this baby booty knitting pattern on-line and thought I would give it a go. I think they turned out ever so cute! I love the little cross over, though I hope it doesn't look too girly if we have a boy.

Then I painted a mailbox for my Aunt Linda for her birthday. I had painted her one years ago and it was looking rather weather-beaten, so I decided to do another one to replace that one. She was so thrilled with it!

I'm now going to get on with making all my thank you cards ready for the baby showers that are coming up. I am getting so excited about the baby showers and sharing this time with all my church family and family and friends! I am so blessed with people who love us and are so excited about baby coming and are showing their love and support in so many ways!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Week 29

Time is just zooming past at an incredible rate! All is well at the Hall household, baby seems to be doing just fine, moving around in there which is so precious to feel. My glucose results came back normal and I am not anemic which is all great! I did have the rhogan shot as Stephen is O+, but it all was fine. We get a 3-D ultrasound this Thursday, which I am so excited about! We should be able to see baby more distinctly as long as baby co-operates with positions and doesn't have his/her back to us!

The nursery is coming along a little more. My cousin and aunt gave us their presents early so we now have the curtain, lamp, and diaper stacker in the room. It's starting to look so cute! We moved Stephen's chest of drawers in there too and have some ornaments that have been given to baby on there. I got my cloth diapers I had ordered in the mail and I am so pleased! They are so cute! I am washing them at the moment as they need to go through a couple of washes to make them absorbant. We should have everything ready for diapering now!

I'm making some thank you cards to give out to people who have given us some lovely baby presents already, and for the showers coming up. I'm having so much fun with all these baby things

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Week 26

Had a lot more lower back and hip pain this week, so I finally invested in a pregnancy pillow and it helped me sleep last night. I haven't had a good nights sleep in a couple of days so that was a blessing! Went for my next check-up at the doctors and had to have my glucose blood work and the rhogan shot because Stephen's blood is positive and mine is negative. It wasn't much fun but everything is ok so far. I had the nurse lay me down for the blood work because of my 'episode' of nearly fainting the last time. Thankfully she was able to get my vein the first time and it wasn't such a big ordeal as previously. The rhogan shot went in the hip and it was a bit painful but not too bad. At least we got to see baby again on the ultra-sound and he/she weighs 2 lbs and is growing in the 54th percentile, so right on target! The doctor is very happy with everything and I haven't heard back about my glucose test which is usually good news. I would hear from them sooner if there was a problem. Now if I can just get my back sorted I'll be doing great! I may need to call my chiropractor if I don't see much relief in the next couple of days. We'll see if he can work his magic on my back!! At least the pregnancy pillow is helping me sleep for now. But it will all be worth it in a couple of months when we're holding that precious one in our arms! Praising the Lord for all He is doing in our lives!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Decorating Baby's Room

We are having so much fun preparing for our little one. Stephen and I decided to paint the baby's room, even though it was already a neutral color, to have something fresh. The bedding we have for baby is Winnie-the-Pooh and it has some sage green leaves, so we decided on a pale sage green color. It's hard to see in the pictures with the light coming through the windows, but it's like the gingham in the basket liners. We painted a coat of white primer and then only had to do one coat of the green and it looks so lovely! The crib (cot) and changer came and we picked up the mattress and rocker/glider from Wal-Mart. They were very easy to put together, the stain color is 'espresso' and looks nice in contrast to the pale green walls and should all look great with the bedding.

Also got some pictures of some of the gifts for baby that people have already sent. I also got a beautiful, handmade diaper (nappy) bag from a relation of Stephen's we met on Saturday at the Hall family summer party. She just took me out to her car and had me choose one I liked! She is so sweet and does an amazing job making these bags.

I'll post more pictures as I continue to decorate. I've got plans for shelves and I need to get my pictures framed and hung that I have painted too. It's all so exciting and I'm looking forward to the baby coming in a couple of months!

This is a picture of the bedding. We'll get it at our baby shower and then we can set it up!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

After 25 Years

Last year was an amazing year in my life for many reasons and one that is a continuation of a story that began 25 years ago. When I was 6 years old my family moved from the US to England to start a church ministry there. We first arrived and lived in the Birmingham area in a village called Hensford. I started attending the primary/elementary school there called Hazelslade Primary School and met a sweet girl names Julie Bennett. We became really good friends. I would often go to her house for lunch and we would play in her back garden/yard on her swing-set. We went to a farm one day together and fed calves and saw sheep and other animals.

My parents were praying for the Lord to direct them to the area of England in which they were supposed to start a church ministry. Eight months after we arrived in England they decided we needed to move to the East Anglia area, which is a bit of a distance (for England!) from the village of Hensford where we were living. I was very sad because I had made some lovely friends and would miss them, especially Julie. Julie's Mum made a little photo book of pictures of us and of Julie as a going away gift for me. I gave Julie a Bible as a going away gift. I had meant to get her address and write to her, but somehow either I never did or it was misplaced. Anyway I kept that picture album and would periodically look through it and remember my dear friend, Julie, and wonder how she was doing and what she was learning in school, and whether she was still friends with the same girls we were friends with together in Hazelslade.

Over the years as I grew up in England and would clean my room and clean my closets out, I would find the picture album and wonder again. I watched a show in England called "Surprise, Surprise" which was a show where they re-connected people that couldn't find each other. I would watch that show and wonder if I could write in and tell them about my friend Julie and see if they could find her for me. Little did I know my friend Julie was growing up in Hensford watching the same show and thinking exactly the same thing.

We both got on with our lives always wondering about the other person. We seemed to have a real connection as friends that spanned time. Julie fell in love and married and has a lovely family with a little girl, Leah. She became a pharmacist and doesn't live too far away from where she grew up. I stayed in England for a while, but then moved to the USA and did 6 years of university studies, fell in love and also married.

But a month before my wedding last year, I got a message on facebook from a Julie Hobday that said "I'm trying for find an old school friend. Is it you?" in the title and the message said "My name was Julie Bennett. When I was 7 years old I had a friend called Charity Palmer, who I have been trying to get in touch with. We went to Hazelslade Primary School, Staffordshire, England. Are you the same Charity Palmer? If so please get in touch." I couldn't believe it! I started squealing with excitment! I wrote her back immediately and we basically picked up where we had left off 25 years ago when we were 7 years old. She was equally exciting telling me she nearly hit the ceiling with excitment when I wrote back to her confirming that I WAS that Charity Palmer!

She then told me how she had wanted to find me all these years too and also how that she would look at her Bible and wonder about me. She also wondered about God because she was never taken to church or Sunday school as a child. Her husband was a believer in the Lord and through him and other things she began to search for the Lord and they started attending church together and taking their little girl, Leah with them. It was amazing how God used that little New Testament Bible to bring Julie to a desire to know more about God and also to keep us friends all these years, though we were apart.

So after 25 years I've found my dear childhood friend and it's as if we were never apart. I am so thankful to God for bringing us back together and of all thing through facebook! We have yet to actually meet again in person, but I am so excited about that day, hopefully in the near future. I know I will give her the biggest hug and probably cry for joy when we meet again in person! For now, skype is a wonderful tool to keep friends and loved ones in touch when they are miles apart! And I made sure I got her address and phone number this time!!

Love you Julie!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Halfway There

I cannot believe I am halfway through the pregnancy! The time is just flying by. Stephen said that it will go even faster when the baby comes, and I just can't believe it. All is going well, though, I am feeling great, have more energy and really enjoying my second trimester.

This week was my birthday, I turned 32, can't believe that either! I had a good day, met Stephen for our coffee date at Starbucks after lunch, then went to teach my piano and voice students at my studio at the Presbyterian Church, then came home to presents and leftovers! We are going to eat out at my favorite restaurant, P.F. Changs, tomorrow to celebrate too. Stephen bought me a beautiful pearl necklace for my birthday which I've been wearing every day this week so far! We are celebrating with James and Brittany on Saturday too, so that should also be lots of fun. Just an extended celebration!

Had a lovely morning with a friend from church, Michelle. She introduced me to the area just a couple miles north of us, Ooltewah. They have an organic and homegrown food market/health food store, and a lovely park with some nice walks around. We also went to the library for 'story time' for her kids and it was so sweet! It reminded me of when I taught kindergarten music. And they have a really nice Wal-Mart there which I think I will be going to for my grocery shopping in the future. The Wal-Mart I've been going to is under renovation and a big mess. And it doesn't always have the things I was used too. Anyway, it was a lovely morning!

I'm preparing still for baby, I bought brand new cloth diapers/nappies last week from e-bay for a GREAT price! Then another friend of mine purchased some more for me second hand from someone who hardly used them and they look new! So I should just about have enough now for the first 6 months; then I may need some bigger outer wraps as baby grows. It is so great how things are coming together.

The weather is getting very warm and I am concerned with July and August weather! I guess I will just stay in the house with the air-conditioning on and under a ceiling fan too!! Nothing like hibernating in the summer! LOL We'll see how it goes. I also need to purchase some more clothes, I now officially cannot get into any of my regular clothes. I have permission from my husband to get some more things so I shall be off to the shops and pray for bargains!

Friday, May 7, 2010

Choir Sharing

This week has been very busy with Stephen and I volunteering to help out a music education organization SouthEast Chapter of Kodaly Educators (SECKE). I am a member of the organization and was the co-secretary this past year. Anyway, we provide a couple of workshops throughout the year, and a choir festival once a year, called Choir Sharing, for school choirs to come and perform and be assessed. It lasts for two days and just the mornings. Stephen volunteered to record the choirs so they would be able to have a copy and listen to how well they performed on the day. We had lots of fun! I was basically helping to organize where people were to sit and how to get these choirs, with up to 75 kids in one choir, in and out of the auditorium quickly and quietly. Stephen and I arrived at 8am on Tuesday to set up the mics and recording equipment. The choirs started to come at 9:30am that morning and were continuous until about 12:30pm. Then we had lunch and then I went to teach my piano students from 2:30-6pm that night! Needless to say I was exhausted! I came home and sat on the couch while Stephen heated up our dinner (I had made a casserole the day before to last us for a couple of days!), I ate and litterally went to bed! The next day we were back there again at 8am and had the same routine except I could come home after lunch and didn't have to teach on Wed.

I think we had 21 different school choirs over the 2 days and we heard some very good singing! It was encouraging to see so many good music teachers giving students the opportunity to excel in music and learn to work together as a group to achieve! I took my choirs that I taught last school year to this last year, and I remember them really enjoying the experience and taking a lot away from it. We had a range of children from age 7 to 14. The 7 year olds were my favorite, they sang a lullaby and it was so precious I cried! I think it was the pregnancy hormones but still it was just lovely! There were 40 or more 7 year olds all standing up there on the stage and when they came to sit in the audience they were the best behaved children we had all day! I did have to accompany for one choir that was missing their accompanist. Our Choir Sharing director came up to me and asked me Wed morning if I would be able to accompany for this one choir as their accompanist had tripped over a pre-schooler the previous day and got a concussion! It would have been funny had the lady not received a concussion from the event! Anyway, it was good to be of service to a choir director in need!

Thankfully I am feeling much better and have more stamina this week to be able to help with this event. Yesterday I just rested to make sure I am ok. Baby seems to be fine, I haven't felt baby move yet, or not anything significant enough to speak of. My doctor did say that it could be up to 24 weeks before I feel baby move, so we will see.

Getting ready for our Mother and Daughter dinner this Saturday as Mother's Day is this Sunday. I have been asked to speak for our dinner so I am studying and praying for God's will. I am learning so much from the study and really enjoying it. We are doing Titus 2:3-5 and how it can relate to a mother and daughter relationship too. I've been doing a word by word study on the passage and then will try to tie in how my mother is truly a Titus 2 older woman! I also want to challenge the younger women to be humble in listening to the advise of the older women in the church and not think they know more than them. Sometimes we younger women can be a bit prideful and we need to be mentored by those who have gone before us and learned great lessons from the Lord in how to raise their children, love their husbands, and take care of their homes. Happy Mother's Day to all mothers!

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Week 18

Stephen and I just got back from our latest visit to the doctors for a check up on me and baby. I get so amazed and emotional every time I get to 'see' them on the ultrasound monitor and hear the little heart beat! We saw baby's head and brain, the little heart pumping, the spinal column, little arms waving and head moving around. Our doctor is a Christian and jokingly said, "Isn't it amazing what evolution has done!" To which we all laughed and discussed how we can't imagine anyone seeing a baby in a womb and all their organs growing at just the right rate and time, in just the right way to develop them into a full grown baby at birth and then beyond, and NOT realize that it was all designed by God! It truly is miraculous!

We may have a slight problem that can be addressed. I had blood work done 4 weeks ago, and today the doctor told me my blood type is O negative. I didn't know my type before then. Anyway, that can be a problem if Stephen's type isn't the same or compatible to mine because then baby's could also be incompatible with mine. But they will give me an injection at 26-28 weeks if needed to make sure my body doesn't reject the baby. And if Stephen's is compatible with mine we won't need to worry. He will have his blood typed and see what it is and then we will know what to do from there. But God is looking after us and at least we are informed and have a great doctor to help us too!

I am feeling SO much better, had a burst of energy this past Monday and cleaned the entire house, went grocery shopping, and helped Stephen in the garden! Tuesdays are always busy as I teach piano lessons most of the day. So Wed I decided to take it easy and today I am off to run some errands! I am having the start of the food cravings, though, and at the moment it is for McDonalds fries and grape soda!! I wish I could just crave healthy things!! I am eating healthy for the most part, lots of veggies and fresh fruit.

The pictures are of the baby's brain and spine. When Stephen saw the brain he was very impressed and said that we will have a very clever child! He's wanting to teach the little one calculus by the time they are 2 years old!! I told him not to get his hopes up!! LOL

Friday, April 23, 2010

Veg Garden

Stephen and I have been working on our veggie garden and it is mostly all planted now. We are so excited about all the lovely veggies we will be eating this summer straight from our garden. Stephen put in the most hard labor as he dug the ground all by hand. It took him some time to get it all dug over and the ground broken up, but he did a great job.

I think we may invest in a tiller for next year, but this worked and Stephen said he enjoyed the exercise. He shoveled off the top soil and then broke up the clay-like dirt underneath, then worked the top soil back in. He then mixed in some fertilizer. I planted the seeds in seed trays and started them indoors. We have corn, green beans, yellow squash, zucchini (courgette), okra, onions, tomatoes, and cabbage. The corn shot up the quickest! We planted them out last Saturday.

They are all growing well and seem very happy out there! So exciting growing things!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Week 16

Wow time is just flying by! I can't believe how quickly the weeks are passing, but then time does seem to go by faster the older you get. I am doing so much better the last couple of weeks. The nausea has gone except for when I smell things that don't smell good to me, which is a couple of rooms in my house! Anyway, been catching up with housework and also started a veggie garden with Stephen. He is doing most of the digging and I planted the seeds in my seed trays. They were sprouted on 1 week and Stephen is now frantically trying to get the ground tilled and ready so we can plant the very fast growing plants!

Spring is here in full bloom, the trees look just lovely, but they are also causing allergy problems for many people and there is a yellow film of pollen everywhere! I'm trying to wait until the trees are done before washing my windows. I have had a lot of sneezing problems from the pollen, but managing without needing any medication.

I'm growing in the belly area, just about out of all my regular clothes. I've got a few things that were a little big for me before that I am able to wear now. My weekly e-mail about baby said that baby will start on a growth spurt for the next couple of weeks, so I am preparing to be hungry a lot and for bigger clothes!! I've not gained much weight as far as the scales go, just re-distributing! I am eating healthy for the most part, just have sugar cravings every now and then and cheesy things like cheese chip (crisps) and crackers and cheese in general!!

Made these little baby booties I saw on a Martha Stewart show and got the pattern off of their web-site. They are yellow and green so should be ok for a boy or girl! Stephen and I are talking about names, but I think we will keep them a surprise for when the baby is born, and also we won't know the gender until then either. We are both getting very excited! Stephen talks to the little one and rubs my belly. It is so sweet! We are reading the Bible out loud together for baby to hear and I try to play the piano and sing every day too. I'm hoping he/she will be musical in some way, but we will love them no matter what!!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Rough day with the blood work!

Went for my 3rd check-up with the doctor today and got to see and hear baby again! Such a precious life growing in me! Listen to me I'm already being a proud mommy!! Everything seems to be fine, baby is growing normally as far as Dr. Barker can see from the ultra sound today. I was due also to have the routine blood work done today. So I sat down in the chair and a nurse came to start taking blood and asked me if I had problems with having blood taken. I told her no as I've never had any trouble before. I have a 'road map' on my arms you can see my veins quite well! So she started to get in and had trouble getting into the vein as she said it kept moving. It started hurting and so she pulled the needle out. Then another nurse came in and tried the other arm, having the same trouble. By that time the first nurse could see me going white and asked me if I was ok. To which I responded that I felt sick at my stomach. I literally started feeling extremely nauseous and then light in the head. So she handed me an alcohol towelette and made me sniff it to stay awake and the other nurse was about done. Finally they were done and had the blood, but I was hot and dizzy, so they got me a Sprite and I sipped that while trying to take deep breaths! I felt so silly as I've never had that trouble before, but the nurse said that it was a mixture of them hurting me by trying to get into my veins and then sometimes being pregnant makes it worse too. It took me quite a while to get over it, and when I finally got to my car, I just sat there for a few minutes to make sure I was ok before driving.
I'm still feeling a little weak and think I'll take a short nap this afternoon. So that was my exciting morning experience! But at least everything is going well with the baby and it's development. They will tell me the results of the blood work and also make sure my blood type isn't going to cause trouble with the baby's blood type. I should hear in a week or so. I am feeling so much better too, praise the Lord!
Looking forward to the Easter celebrations this weekend. We are having lots of special music and scripture reading around the crucifixion and resurrection this Sunday. Then we are having dinner at church with everyone bringing something. Praying for visitors and ways to keep ministering to our community and reaching them with the gospel message! Happy Easter to everyone!

Monday, March 29, 2010

13 Weeks

This week I have still been some nauseous, but starting to get better, praise the Lord! I've still been looking through lots of baby things on-line to compare prices and see what I would like. Since we are waiting to find out if we're having a boy or girl at birth, I need to plan a 'neutral' theme nursery. It is a bit of a challenge, but I think it will be worth it in the end. The nice things about having a neutral nursery is that if the next child we have is a different gender, it won't matter and I won't have to purchase new things! I've also been making some homemade things for the baby as I thought it would be more special. I've been doing some watercolour paintings of teddy bears to have framed and they match some teddy bear figurines I've been purchasing too! I think they will look so cute! I'm also wanting to paint some pictures with children's songs and nursery rhymes to hang in the nursery too. I'm loving making all these little things for my little one!

This week baby has fingerprints and their veins and organs are clearly visible through their still thin skin. Baby is about 3 inches long and weighs nearly 1oz. Their body is starting to get bigger so the head is not as big in proportion as is used to be. So amazing how all this is happening and all in the right order, at the right time. What an amazing Designer God we have!

This week I also had the opportunity to go to the True Woman '10 conference started by Nancy Leigh DeMoss who has had a minstry to women for many years called "Revive Our Hearts". The conference was amazing and I was challenged to study God's Word more and more and to be encouraged that God's plan for my life is to be a godly wife and mother before anything else. We heard the scriptures preached and challenged to be godly women and to treat our husbands with respect and love while training children in the Word of God. I truly do want to follow what God's plan is for my life and not let the secular culture define my womanhood. After all, didn't the Designer of women have a purpose and plan for our lives and shouldn't we be more concerned with what He plan is for us? A friend of mine from church attended the conference with me and we are challenged to start a woman's Bible study for our church ladies that defines true womanhood from the scripture's perspective. What a challenge and opportunity to stand for Truth in a world gone wild with relativism. I also got to sing along with Keith and Kristin Getty from Northern Ireland!! WOW! They led the music for our conference and we sang many of their modern hymns as well as some older hymns!! I turned to my friend, Michelle, and said "I'm singing with the Getty's, LIVE, and I'm hearing and seeing Nancy Leigh DeMoss in person...YAY!" These are the true hero's of the faith and it meant more to me to see them than any Hollywood 'star'. These are the men and women we should be encouraging our children to listen to, and emulate, not the world! What a blessed time of praise to our Lord!

Getting exciting about the upcoming Easter time and services. Our church is praying for ways to reach out into our neighborhoods and community with the gospel message. What a wonderful time to remember the huge sacrifice our Lord made on the cross for our sins! I don't want to EVER take that for granted or not be moved by the great love shown to me by my Lord and Saviour!

Monday, March 22, 2010

12 Weeks Along

Feeling better this week, I actually had 4 days in a row without nausea. But it didn't last as the weekend was a bit rough with the queasy feeling back again. But praising the Lord that baby is well as far as we know!

This week my cousin has been e-mailing me about some things for the baby, and she told me about a local babies and mommys re-sale called "Jack and Jill". So I went along to the re-sale and found some great bargains! I got a stroller (pushchair) and matching baby car seat for a great bargain! It was used, but very gently used. On Friday I painstakingly figured out how to get the cusion parts off the stroller and car seat frame, and put them in the wash. I then washed down the frames of both and let them all dry in the beautiful sunshine we had on Friday. My neighbor saw the items and asked if I was expecting. I was able to chat with him for a few mins and get to know them better. His wife works at a children's hospital TC Thompson, here in Chattanooga, and said if I ever needed any advise or help to just ask. I've been praying for a way to get to know my neighbors better so that was a great opportunity.
The stroller and car seat cleaned up beautifully! We are so blessed with the Lord's provision. I was also able to purchase some maternity clothes at very good prices too, so it was a very profitable day!

This week our little one is about the size of a lime, has fingernails, is developing more intestines, and is developing reflexes! It truly is amazing how God designed them to develop inside the womb! We truly are "fearfully and wonderfully made" by a great Creator designer!

I've been craving salty things and strong tastes, but I am still trying to eat as healthy as possible. Lots of fresh fruit and veg, and cheese! Stephen and I went out on a date Friday night as it was the first Friday I felt good in 3 months! I ate way too much food at the Italian restaurant, though, and suffered with stomach ache the rest of the evening...I need to watch my portions as the pregnant belly doesn't like a lot of food at one time.

I have been getting so excited about the baby coming. I've been looking at cribs (cots) and baby bedding on-line just to get an idea of what is out there and what to register for in the next couple of months. What exciting times!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Expectant Mom

Tweleve weeks ago I found out that I am going to be a Mom! What wonderful news! We were very surprised at first, but became more excited as the weeks went by. I had my first appointment with the doctor at 6 weeks and there I saw my baby for the first time on the monitor during the ultra sound and I also heard the little one's heartbeat! I became very emotional hearing the heartbeat, so very strong but little, and the realization that I truly was carrying a baby hit me. I knew it before, but seeing and hearing made it so much more real. I walked out of that visit telling Stephen that I could NOT believe that people could ever think of aborting their child! It truly is a human life inside of me, one that God has entrusted me to protect and cherish, and that is a huge but lovely responsibility. It is also amazing how God is growing my little one every day!
I have suffered with morning sickness, and the aversion to smells especially scented things like shampoo, body wash, plug in airfreshners, and perfumes. The first couple of weeks I searched for unscented everything, or at least scents I could stand! Stephen was banned from wearing cologne and had to start using my unscented deodorant. I have finally found things that work. I also have been trying to find foods that help with my morning sickness, and apples and cereal seem to be doing the trick! But now at 12 weeks I am actually starting to feel much better and I have more energy, though still not like I used too!
At my 10 week visit, the baby had developed little hands and legs and was just swinging and kicking away! Everything seems to be going well for both me and baby. I am so thankful for all the prayers and encouragement from friends and family. Stephen is so excited about becoming a dad. He kisses my belly every day, sometimes just walks by and rubs the belly, and talks to the baby!
I will try to keep this updated with baby news and how I'm progressing to share with you all! I am very blessed and so thankful for God's working in our lives!

Friday, January 15, 2010

What Grace Is Mine

As I look back over this past year, and even years before, I can see the hand of God working in my life in every aspect. I have accomplished many things this past year: getting married, teaching middle school chorus, searching for and then purchasing a house, moving into our house and setting it up, teaching piano and voice, playing piano for church, organizing ladies meetings and special events at church, and the list goes on. But I NEVER would have been able to accomplish any of this or even have these things in my life were it not for the grace that God bestows on me every day. He is the real reason I have what I have and can do what I do. I am very humbled by His love for me and His desire to change me to become more like Him. Yet I fail the Lord so often and my lack of giving Him control in every area of my life causes me to not be as successful and limits my abilities. This year I pray I will give more to the Lord in every area of my life and see what great things He will do!

The inspiration for the title of this post comes from a Keith and Kristin Getty hymn set to the tune of "Danny Boy" or "Londonderry Air" and here are the words:

What grace is mine that He who dwells in endless light
Called through the night to find my distant soul
And from his scars poured mercy that would plead for me
That I might live and in his name be known

So I will go wherever He is calling me
I lose my life to find my life in Him
I give my all to gain the hope that never dies
I bow my heart, take up my cross and follow Him

What grace is mine to know His breath alive in me
Beneath his wings my wakened soul may soar
All fear can flee for death's dark night is overcome
My Saviour lives and reigns forevermore

So I will go....

I sang this at church the other week and it is my heart's desire to follow the Lord's leading everyday in the simple, little things of life as well as the bigger ones. What less could I do for One who has given such abundant grace!