Friday, November 28, 2008

Thanksgiving 2008

We had a great Thanksgiving day! I am extra thankful this year. I was especially thankful that we did not have to spend Thanksgiving day in the hosiptal. We drove up for lunch at the club in Spartanburg. It was delicious and Jackson was starving so he did great during dinner. However, the reason you have not seen many pictures of Jackson recently is because he is never still long enough to take a picture. I was so glad we got to spend some time with my sister (KK as Jackson calls her), it has been months since we have seen her! I was so happy all day yesterday that we were able to spend Thanksgiving with my family.

Jackson is still very attached to my mom. He would even stay still and smile with a picture with her. Jackson also got in trouble with his daddy because he wanted to ride with Gigi so bad and did not understand why he could not ride with her. He pitched one fit and fell on the ground and started swatting at times (he got a spanking). I was so sad that my dad got food poisoning and was not able to go to lunch with us! It was not the same without him. We left Spartanburg around 4 pm after I had some contractions. I have been dilated since 35 weeks and am now 38 weeks. It is amazing how long it takes for my body to get ready to have a baby. I do not even get excited any more when I have contractions (I know if they are real by laying down on my side and drinking water...if I still have them after that then they are real contractions).

Pray that we stay well! Jackson has a little cough and Charlie had a fever of over 100 last night. It will be really stressful for any of us to be sick while I am giving birth. I cannot believe in 7 days I will probably be induced. I feel a lot more ready than I did last week, but I am still not 100 percent ready!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Doctor's Visit Today-38 Weeks Pregnant

Today's visit was long because the offices are closed Thursday and Friday. Here is the wrap up:
  • I am now 1 or 2 centimeter... last week I was just still 1/2 a centimeter. I am still 50 percent effaced like I was last week
  • Her heart beat was good - in the 140's
  • The doctor was concerned because she could not feel her head and wanted to know her exact position (I think she was concerned that she was sideways). She sent me to the ultrasound room for them to check out her exact position. Her head is down and in a great position but she has not dropped into the birth canal. She looked great and my fluid was good. I wanted the ultrasound tech to measure her but the doctor did not request it so they did not want to (I do not know if insurance covers it when doctors do not request it). Her head looked large! Pray that her head is not too big to get down the birth canal! Jackson was not a big baby so I would be shocked if she was larger than him. They saw yet again that she is definitely a girl. She looked great and was waving her hand at us.
  • Because she has not dropped down unto the birth canal she said it was OK for us to go to Spartanburg just for the day on Thanksgiving and have lunch. I am so happy!
  • I go back to the doctor Monday first thing in the morning (8 am) and we will see how I am progressing and then they will probably schedule an induction that day. I think as of now it might be that Friday December 5th as long as she drops into the birth canal.
  • I have been having contractions off and on since Sunday night and I am sleeping fine from 1 or 12 till 5 or 6 am. I think God is just getting me ready for little to no sleep. My contractions are only about 15 or 20 minutes apart and then will go away for some hours and then come times
  • Keep us in your prayers over the next 10 days. I am fine if I have a c-section, but it would be great not to have to go through induction and lots of fun contractions and then have to have a c-section. I just really think she is not ready to come this week and I am not ready for her to come either. I will be ready December 1st...wish I could let her know that...haha!

Monday, November 24, 2008

I Will Trust in Thee

It is official: I am very emotional. One minute I am so thankful for another baby and my emotions are kept in check. The next minute I become very scared of taking care of two babies under the age of three. Sunday, I had contractions pretty regularly probably because I did too much but it made me realize how soon my baby girl is coming (I will go to the doctor tomorrow and have an update on how things are progressing). I cannot wait for her to be here, however, it will not be just me and Jackson anymore. Ignorance sometimes is bliss...I was so naive right before I had Jackson and just thought we would go home with him and live happily ever after and the only hard part would be giving birth. I never dreamed of him being sick ever. But as many of you know, being a parent again is huge responsibility especially when your kids are jaundiced and dehydrated and about to be hospitalized because you are too prideful to realize breastfeeding is not working with us like the in the case with Jackson (not breastfeeding this time so that will be different).

Charlie was able to buy FBC's wonderful choir's CD in the our new church bookstore. On the CD Jessie sings this great song but I cannot find the song or the lyrics online. It is called "I Will Trust in Thee." Trusting God is an action that I have to do...even when things are uncertain and major life change is about to happen. I trust God by taking every one of my crazy thoughts captive to God (especially in the middle of the night when I have crazy thoughts this week) and dwelling on Him and His strength in me. It is not my strength or power, rather it is His, and nothing is going to happen to me that he is not allowing to happen for my good and His glory.

Here are the words to this wonderful song:

When my path is dark before me
I will trust in Thee
When thy face is hidden from me
I will trust in Thee

When my burden's weigh upon my heart
and hope seems far from me
I will lift my hand to thee my God
I will trust in Thee

When foes encamp around me
I will trust in Thee
Clinging to the one who will save me
I will trust in Thee

Before the earth and heaven formed
Before you made the sea
You knew my name
Oh Lord I will trust in Thee

Lord you found me you surround me
Lord I love you, I will trust you

You are my strength
You are my shield
Jesus you are my strength
Oh for Grace
clinging to the one who saved me

Does anyone know the origination of this song?

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Guessing Abigail's Birth Day-Part 2

Many of you did not guess Abigail's birthday so here is another chance! You know you want to be the winner. I am due December 9th and they will induce me on or before that date for medical reasons. Jackson was 6 pounds 14 ozs, 21 inches, and I delivered him at 40 weeks. I delivered him at 11:17 am after being induced that morning at 7 am. Click here to guess:

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Training Jackson in Righteousness

I do not know how many times a certain verse has rung in my head. Knowing that all Scripture is God-breathed it’s fascinating to read this:

“He who spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is careful to discipline him.” Proverbs 13:24.

Wow. The Bible says that if you spare the rod you hate your own son. That is really strong language. It is hard to spank your children, but if you do not use the rod on your children, ultimately, you are not showing them that you love them. I tell Jackson that I love him too much not to spank him. When I spank him I try to make sure to never do it when I am upset or mad.

Additionally, using the rod is not really a choice for me. Jackson does not respond at all to “time outs” (which is an unbiblical method of discipline). If we put him in time out for lets say, 5 minutes - 5 minutes later he will go and do the exact some dangerous action he was doing. What would I tell the doctors and nurses at the Emergency Room…that I could not protect my child because it was too much trouble for me to use the rod on him (an action that God has called me to do in his Word)? If I spank him, he will not dare go back to it. For the rod I use a wooden spoon. He knows this spoon is the spanking spoon and he even tries his best to say “spanking spoon.” Here are some reasons why I think it is working for Jackson:

  1. Consistency, Consistency, Consistency. I try not to start spanking him when I am frustrated. I say, “Jackson if you do that action again, you will get a spanking.” I give him a chance not to sin. I always warn him so he knows it is coming and it not out of the blue where he does not understand where it came from. He knows where the spanking spoon is located and nothing is unexpected. Guess what? Sometimes he chooses not to sin! However, most of the time he continues to do it, and I lean him over my lap and spank him with the rod three times. He usually tries to cover his hands over his bottom (my dad said that I used to do the same thing). Many times it is worth it for him to get spanked just to continue in that certain sin…I think it was “worth it” for me as well as a child. Recently, he is hardly even fussy when I spank him, and he does not continue the action.
  2. If it is an action that could harm himself or others then he definitely gets a spanking.
  3. If he throws a fit and falls on the floor, I say “if you continue this you will be spanked” and he gets a spanking and usually stops. He has to know that throwing a temper tantrum is not loving and does not bring God glory. Letting him just cry in his crib (for some sort of time out situation that God does not call for me to do in the Bible) and not spanking him is not loving for me as a parent. I will say I have given countless YMCA children time out and have seen it “work” in a public school-type setting, but I am Jackson’s parent and it is my responsibility to use the rod on him. Time-out is mere behavior modification and rarely changes the heart. Somehow the rod does.
  4. Recently, he has been doing so much better since he is now able to communicate with us through signs. He does not get frustrated as much now…he hardly even throws a fit on the floor…and some days he does not even get a spanking (but most days he does)
  5. I do not dare do it in public. My goal in using the rod is not humiliation but saving his soul from death. Charlie has had to go to the bathroom and spank him a few times while out to eat.
  6. It is hard to be a parent. It takes work and I just cannot sit on the computer or on the phone and let him be defiant…although many days that seems like a very good idea.
  7. It’s biblical. Whenever God commands us to do a certain thing, He does so because he knows that we are prone to do the opposite.

Proverbs 23:13-14 states, “Do not withhold discipline from a child; if you punish him with the rod, he will not die. Punish him with the rod and save his soul from death.

We are called to discipline our children with the rod to save our children’s soul from death

I am reading the New Strong Will Child, by Dobson and am having a hard time getting through it. Many times, I feel (and know) that Dobson integrates psychology with the Bible and often times that approach just does not work. The Bible’s world view is to die to self and depend on God, and the world view of man (psychology) is to build up self and to depend on self not on God.

Still the best book I have read on parenting is “Don’t Make Me Count to Three” by Plowman…I want to read it again.

Do you have any books that you would recommend?

Saturday, November 15, 2008

We Had the Best Time at the Wiggles!

We have been looking forward to this Wiggle concert for a long time. We went with a group from FBC. I am so thankful that I was able to go at 36 plus week pregnant. Jackson loves the Wiggles and so does Charlie (he was just as excited as Jackson). It was a great concert, they even had ballet dancers, and Jackson was so excited...he was dancing a ton even before the show started. I was concerned about the time since it was during his nap time, but he did great and was glued in the entire time. We made it for the entire show but he was asleep pretty quick at around 3:15. We had the best time with everyone!

Video of Jackson before the Wiggles

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Our Wonderful Baby Shower!

Sunday, the children's ministry at the church threw us a wonderful baby shower. Lynette, Ashley and Kathy worked so hard and did such a great job...we are so thankful for them! The only thing that was missing was my family. It was my grandmother's 90th birthday celebration in Raleigh and so they were not able to come (and I was sad I was not able to travel to Raleigh for it). I was glad Charlie's mom, Mimi, was able to come.

God really knows all our needs and will provide our needs so perfectly. We were overwhelmed by all the love and gifts. We received so many great outfits which was our major need. We already have a car seat, pack-n-play, crib, dresser, etc. Now all I have to do is get everything organized and write thank you notes and then we will be ready for our little girl!

Saturday, November 08, 2008

Update on Bubbles/Bubba...I mean Jackson

(In the above picture Jackson is watching Baby Signing Time and signing "Water.")

Jackson is beyond obsessed with bubbles. First thing, when Jackson wakes up he says, "daddy, bubbles." When he gets hurt, he runs and asks for bubbles...all day long he asks for bubbles. We cannot bribe him with food but we can sure bribe him with bubbles. It is crazy. The Babynet coordinator gets him to do things by using bubbles. On Wednesday night, he sees Kris at church, asks for bubbles and does not even get upset that we are dropping him off. I have even started calling him "Bubbles" and Charlie has started to call him "Bubba" (I guess that is a cool version of "Bubbles").

Anyway, here is an update on his speech progress:

He is almost as obsessed with bubbles as he is the Baby Signing Time dvd's. I was able to get volumes 1 and 2 on amazon for a good price as well as the original Signing Time dvd, but the last two volumes of Baby Signing Time are so new that I ordered volume three today for $20 on Baby signing time's website: I am going to wait a couple of more weeks to order volume 4.

Regular Signing Time has about 15 volumes along with flash cards. Even if your child has no problems communicating, one mom says that Signing Time dvd's have helped her 17 month old to learn to read. I would highly recommend these dvd's!

Anyway, after watching these dvd's every day for multiple times, Jackson's speech therapist said that he made the most progress in one week just by using the videos of any child she has seen. He can sign and say "cracker, dog, eat, eat food, etc." When he wants food he says and signs "eat, food." He will say "shoes" now, but he will only sign "socks." He even will sign "Pj's." It really is unbelievable.

He went from only doing like 15% of what the speech therapist wanted him to say, to 40% in one week. She knew the video's would help but she did not think just in one week he would have 15 to 20 signs as well as signs with words down. He is really starting to understand the power of communication through signs and words. The dvd even teaches him how to sign and say "hurt," which I cannot wait for him to tell me when his stomach hurts or when he is not feeling well. He loves to dance so and do hand motions with the Wiggles so I think he thinks signing is like dancing. He still has a hard time drinking through a straw so the speech therapist is going to check his mouth for weaknesses there. Yesterday he signed and said "airplane" which is a huge accomplishment for him. Again, I tried and tried to teach him unsuccessfully but these video's taught him. What are you favorite educational DVDs?

At church, he officially hates the bye bye buggy. This is very unfortunate. However, Lynn said that since he loves to clean he stays back now (while the rest take a ride) and helps them sweep crumbs up. He really loves to clean, sweep, vacuum....I now know this is very unusual.

Great Product! Worth Every Penny "BABYBJÖRN Eat& Play Smock- Blue "

Jackson loves applesauce, but he makes a complete mess when he eats it. He insist on feeding himself but has to feed himself by scooping up the applesauce and then turning his spoon backwards to his mouth. It gets everywhere! My friend, Katherine, told me about this eat and play smock that you can only get at (you cannot get it in Target stores) a while back. It is great because it is long sleeve smock. We just recently got it because he completely ruined an outfit last week. It is overpriced at $25 (and then you have to pay extra in shipping), however, I feel it is worth it and not ruining outfits. Do you use a huge bib for big food messes? How to I teach Jackson how not to turn his fork and spoon upside down?...he has a complete meltdown when I try to correct him and then refuses to times.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Doctor's Visit Today-35 Weeks Pregnant

I am so glad I did not bring Jackson to my doctor's visit today! Believe it or not, I have been taking him with me and he has done surprisingly well. Today they did the strep test and checked my cervix for dilation. Her head is down, and I am 1/2 centimeter dilated! I do not think I was dilated this early with Jackson but I was dilated 4 centimeters for like a week and finally had to be induced at 40 weeks pregnant. I still think the earliest she will come will be Thanksgiving week which is just 2 weeks early. I am excited that her head is down and getting ready for a vaginal birth. I will be going back to the doctor every week now...ah! I have got to get her room and clothes ready! I do not feel nearly has ready for her has I did with Jackson. I have not cleaned out Jackson's closet in like 6 months so every day I have been cleaning it out and making sure I get my sister in law all the stuff she needs since she is having a little boy. You really do lose money when you are not organized! Jackson has so much cute clothes that he could have been wearing (given to us by Lauren) but I just totally forgot she had given us this one bag that was in his closet! I really feel like I need to get his clothes organized first...I love 2t clothes because he can wear them for like a year...Praise God! Any advice on how to have a very well organized closet (or any organizational tips for keeping their clothes straight)...I would love to hear from you!

I also went to CVS this week and did the best I have done in a long time. I bought $10 worth of candy (my 4th grade girls will be happy), 4 pack of coke for $3 each, and a Colgate spin brush toothbrush for $4.99. I had $19 worth of extrabucks that I used on this purchase that I got from last week, and then I earned $5 for the candy, $3 for the coke, and $2 for the spin brush in extrabucks.

So, I only paid $7.99 out of pocket for my purchase and earned $10 to spend at my next trip. Techinally, I earned money on this trip. CVS said my total savings was $35.61 for this purchase....yay! This is the best I have done in a while. CVS and couponing have made grocery shopping fun for me and I am so thankful!

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

6th Photo Album, 6th Picture

Ashley J. has tagged me to show you my 6th picture in my 6th folder. I got my digital camera from my parents for my birthday of 2005. In May of 2006, both Charlie and I graduated from Southeastern Seminary with master's in divinity. I was six months pregnant with Jackson here (why I might look a little large to yall), and I guess Charlie is distracted by something...haha. It is fun to look back and see how far God has brought us in just a couple years. I am so thankful!

I tag Jennifer O. and Alyssa!