Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Kansas, cont.

People are nice here!

This may seem like an obvious, unnecessary statement, but I assure you, we've lived in a few places where the population is anything but "nice". It's incredibly refreshing to feel welcome in a new place!

Monday, May 30, 2011

Kansas

We're beginning to settle into our new home here in Kansas, enough so that we were able to send Grandma home this afternoon. We'll be staying in the Temporary Living Facility (TLF) on-base for now until our housing eligibility can be determined. For now, home is a one-bedroom apartment-style hotel room, complete with kitchen and living room with fold-out couch. Sleeping arrangements are going to be rather interesting, since we haven't had much luck sleeping in the same room with RJ in the past. We can't leave him out in the living room - Husby would wake him when he gets ready for work early in the morning. So for now, Husby and I are sleeping on the fold-out - giving RJ the bedroom - but my pregnant body may not be able to handle that for very long ...

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Finishing the Drive

While we've enjoyed our time in Texas (and all the snuggles that come along with time at Grandma's house), we've left it all behind in favor or reaching our new home, Kansas. Grandma was kind enough to drive up with us, providing company for me as I drove as well as an extra pair of hands to help with RJ while we were on the road. Still a little under the weather, he was not entirely thrilled about being stuck in his seat for 6 hours, making our arrival that much more of a relief for all of us.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Class of 2011

We are proud to announce Aunt Boo's graduation from High School! 
One over-two-hour ceremony later, she's officially a graduate and couldn't be happier.



RJ, Daddy, Momma, Auntie K, Auntie A & Baby Kay, Uncle A
Grandma, Aunt Boo, and Grandpa

RJ, unfortunately, didn't fare quite as well today. The Texas heat got to him, and our poor baby boy ended up overheating. The drive home from Graduation was accompanied by much complaining and a bought of throwing up, followed by a fever we just couldn't bring down. Being away from home, and thus without a pediatrician, Husby and I decided to take him up to the local ER (again) just to be sure there wasn't anything else to be concerned about. The doctors and nurses poked and prodded him, checked his mouth injury to make sure it wasn't infected, and prescribed 'round-the-clock Tylenol to keep the fever down. He just can't catch a break.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Swimming

Grandma's house has a swimming pool, and we've been quite tempted to take a dip recently. RJ, however, is rather timid about the idea. Splash the water? Sure. But get in? No, thank you.

Even if he didn't want to get in the big pool, Grandma wanted him to be able to safely play in the water. She sent us to Target with explicit instructions for the purchase of a baby pool "for the Grandkids" (let's note here that Baby Cousin is just over a month old and won't be splashing around any time soon). We returned with a wading pool shaped like a whale, which was immediately approved by both Grandma & RJ.










Once he had a chance to get used to the idea of playing in the water, he was willing to let the aunties take him into the big pool. Shortly after he ventured in, Husby and I dashed away for a much-needed date night, and he hardly even knew we were gone.




Thursday, May 26, 2011

Owie

Playing on the floor at Auntie A's house this morning, RJ slipped and bumped his face on the hardwood. A fair amount of bleeding commenced, but after a few minutes he seemed to be doing just fine.

Throughout the day, his mouth would occasionally begin bleeding again, only to quickly stop on it's own. His paci was used more than usual, but I didn't really think anything of it. After all, he was probably still a little sad from his spill and could use the comfort it provided.

After lunch, bleeding was noticed again, and I began to worry. Husby, who had been in Kansas for the last week, we now on his way to see us for the weekend, and had voice strong concern when told of how his son's day was going. Being without a pediatrician, our only way to have him checked was a trip to the local ER. Grandpa came along with us for moral support, and we checked in for a check-up.

Fortunately, the ER was fairly empty, and we were seen right away. After less than an hour, we were discharged with a prescription for an antibiotic "just in case". It seemed that he had badly bruised his front upper gums and inner lip, but nothing was torn to the point of needing stitches. Lessening the paci use was recommended, as it may have been aggravating the bleeding and causing him to swallow instead of spit his blood (which he had begun spitting up just before he went to the hospital). 

Back at Grandma's, he seems to be himself again after a dose of Tylenol, and so far, all is well. We'll keep a close eye on him over the next few days, but he seems to be bouncing back just fine.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Shopping

With a Great-Aunt here to visit, we're doing a lot of running around and showing her the town. After a lunch date with all the aunties (and Grandpa), RJ and I walked around some shops in his new umbrella stroller. He loves watching people as we walk around, and was even more thrilled when we stopped for ice cream. It was a hot day, and the cool treat was just what we needed. And though nothing was purchased, we saw many nice shops and ooo-ed and aahh-ed over lots of fun things.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Grandma's House

After a nearly-sleepless night with a toddler in my hotel bed, we were up at 4:30 this morning (thanks, RJ). Resigning that we were not going to get him back to sleep, we dressed ourselves and went looking for breakfast. The hotel provided waffles, which are a favorite around our house, and between the three (four) of us, we inhaled more than 4 full waffles - yum!

Just over three hours on the road, and we've arrived at Grandma's house. A Great-Aunt is also visiting this week, and limited bed space has put us with Auntie A & Uncle K for the week. They love playing with RJ, which allows me plenty of snuggle time with Baby Cousin. 

Monday, May 23, 2011

On the Road, Again

Since Husby went on ahead this morning, Grandpa volunteered to fly in and drive with us back to Grandma's house. We picked him up from the airport, had a quick lunch, and hit the road at about noon. RJ was a wonderful traveler, with toys and drinks and snacks available to him whenever he needed, and we managed to get more than halfway through the drive this afternoon and evening. We're stopped for the night in Shreveport, Louisiana, leaving only about 3 hours of travel to finish the trip tomorrow morning. We're almost there!

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Family Day

Husby will be leaving for Kansas early tomorrow morning, and we'll head to Texas as soon as our house inspection is finished. RJ and I will be staying with family for the week, with Husby joining us again for my sister's high school graduation on Saturday. We're planning for a 5-day separation, and spending some quality time together as a family today.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Final Preparations

The house is empty, the truck is loaded, and the cleaning is being finished today. We're almost ready to leave Mississippi! New adventure, here we come!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Graduation

As of this morning, Husby's is now an RF Transmissions Apprentice. During the Graduation ceremony, family members were allowed to do the pinning of the new badge, and RJ and I were asked to pin Husby's. Pinning takes two hands, and since I was holding RJ, I wasn't sure how I was going to make it work. Fortunately, the Commander asked if he could hold anything for me, and reached for the toddler. With big smiles all around, I was able to pin Husby's badge, and have RJ help me 'tap' it (once I got him back from the Commander, who was enjoying his company). We were honored to be a part of the process, and look forward to many more pinning ceremonies.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

24 weeks

Since we're moving durring the time I'd usually have our 24 week check-up, my doctor wanted to see us a few days early. Baby boy is growing right on schedule, with a heart rate in the 150s. They're readying a copy of my records for me to take with us, making it easier for my new doctor to be up-to-date.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Moving Excitements

Our goal tonight was to finish packing the truck. Fortunately, so glitches in the plan have allowed us a few extra days in our moving process, and we were able to call it quits a little early. Tomorrow, it will get done, but we need to extra rest tonight.

In order to pay for the move, the military provides us with a credit card which they pay off with funds set aside for us. Having used this card many times before, including our trip here in November, we didn't anticipate any craziness this time around. That was our first mistake. 

The Air Force is transitioning from one type of card to a 'bettter' one, and it seems we've been caught in the middle. Our new card had been mailed out. Instead of waiting until we activated the new one, however, our existing card has been canceled in anticipation. Since New Card is being sent to our home of record, which happens to be in Texas, we're without any form of payment for all the things we've set up - not to mention, gas and food for the trip.

Luckily, I was able to talk with some helpful ladies today, and a NEW New Card is being sent directly to us here in Mississippi. Thankfully, there are still some brains left in this government bureaucracy, or I'm not sure how were would have handled things.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

"Home"

We're 'home' in Mississippi again, but no longer staying in our house. Temporary Housing has been provided for us while we're in the process of moving, and we couldn't be happier to be back with Daddy. The moving truck is being packed, and we're readying ourselves to leave this place behind in favor of a new adventure.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Grandpa's Funeral

It was a lovely service. There were tears; there were smiles; there were baby sounds from the Great-Grandchildren. There was the reassurance of salvation through Christ, and stories of him and how wonderful he was. But no matter how lovely the service, it was surreal. I'm not even sure I believe that he's gone. I kept looking over my shoulder, expecting him to pop in any moment, having pulled an elaborate prank on us. No, he's gone, and we're stuck here without him. Goodbye, Grandpa. We loved you dearly, and you are dearly missed.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Grief

We left Texas for Wisconsin this morning, to be greeted by family in preparations for tomorrow. Not a happy trip, but a needed one. So much is different now, and yet it's all the same. You were loved dearly, Grandpa, and you are missed.

**Happy Birthday, my love!**

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Showcase

RJ and I left Daddy home alone this weekend, and flew to Texas today. While the trip in it's entirety is not expected to be 'fun', we're enjoying ourselves at Grandma's house tonight. My High School puts on a Showcase every year, in which the Drill Team and Color Guard put on a display of their talents. Since Aunt Boo is the Color Guard captain this year, my sisters were featured in more pieces than normal, and I was glad to be able to be there and support them. The captain is given a solo, and this year Boo decided to include Auntie A & Auntie K, her sisters who have also been in Guard, to perform along with her. Set to "Butterfly Kisses", it was a touching piece. I'll blame the pregnancy hormones for the tears.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Early Birthday

RJ and I will be out of town on Husby's birthday, so we took him out to dinner tonight to celebrate. A lovely meal at Outback Steakhouse, complete with dessert, and two CD's he's been requesting made for the perfect evening. We wish we could be here on the actual day, but at least we got to say "Happy Birthday, Daddy!" tonight. 

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Twitter

Once, back in 2008, I tried Twitter, and I didn't really get it. With a well-used Facebook account, I didn't think there was anything special about it, so I left it to die after a couple tries. Nearly 3 years later, I'm reconsidering, and giving it another shot. In the left sidebar of this page, you'll find my Tweets, and you're welcome to follow them if you'd like. I make no promises that I won't be terrible at this, or leave it again, but we'll see how it goes.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

A Haircut and a Black Eye

Knowing we were going to be seeing many family members this weekend (and because he really needed it), we decided to give RJ a haircut this afternoon. While the cut itself was uneventful, he proceeded to ram his face into the corner of the coffee table just as soon as we were done (a lack of balance will do that to you). Poor boy was very sad, and went willingly down for a nap right away. His hair looks nice, but I'm afraid we may have quite the shiner to show off as well.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Mother's Day

My boys have made my life so much different, so much richer. Life with a husband was wonderful, and it's even better now with a family. I spent much of today looking back at RJ's birth and forward toward the birth of Baby Boy, recognizing the significance Motherhood has and will play in my life. But also, I recognize that the birth of my firstborn was not the moment I became a mother - I was mothering him for 9 long months before that defining moment. While my body may have been doing most of the work (and on auto-pilot), he was no less my child from conception, as is Baby Boy. The lives of both my children have forever changed mine, and I wouldn't have it any other way.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Packing

12 bins packed with Husby's help - we've done nothing but sort through and organize our life for the past two days, and we finally able to get quite a bit packed away in preparation for the move. Next time, I'm hiring someone to do this for me.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Sickness

Last night, RJ and I spent a couple our hours in the ER. He had been sick before dinner, and then spiked a fever of 100.5 before bath time. One cool bath later, his fever was 101.7. Not being able to get ahold of his pediatrician after hours, I called my mom for advice. She agreed that a check at the hospital was our best option, and off we went.

The ER's prescription was Tylenol and a good night's sleep; 9 hours and one mid-night dosing later, he was fever-less and doing much better this morning. An extra afternoon nap (necessitated by a 99.9 at 4pm) and a long, fun bath ended our day on a good note. Now if he'll just sleep through the night we might be over whatever it was that invaded our lives.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Dishes

This morning, I unloaded the dishwasher - which we've been raiding for clean dishes for over a day now. The next load sits in and around the sink, but I haven't loaded it. 4.27 minutes of work and it would be done, but I just can't manage to do it. I can't even blame the toddler - he's been so good today that I could have easily gotten it done at any point. No, instead I continue to procrastinate. On my list of things needing to be done, load the dishwasher is far from the top. Things like secure moving truck rental and cancel internet service are found just below pack entire house and grow a person. Since I'm barely managing the first two without loosing my mind breath, I'm taking the rest of the list in stride. The dishes will, in fact, get loaded at some point. Just not right now.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

~ Marshall Francis Browne, Jr. ~
August 24th, 1926 - May 3rd, 2011

At approximately 11:15 last night, my beloved Grandpa went home to heaven. Although saddened by the news of his passing and thoughts of life without him, comfort is found in the assurance of his salvation. By grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone he has been welcomed into the arms of our Heavenly Father. Honestly, I'm a bit envious.

Here on earth, he leaves behind a wife of 61 years, four children, seven grandchildren, and three great-grandchildren (two of whom never had the chance to meet him). Rarely all in one place at one time, we'll be gathering for his funeral on Monday, May 16th. He will be missed by many, but we'll see him again soon.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Open-Door Policy

After a couple hours of running errands and meeting Husby for dinner, RJ and I returned home a little later that usual tonight. I planned to take him straight up to be, skipping the bath since he was so tired. We gathered our things and headed inside, only to be greeted by an unlocked, open front door.

Since the death of bin Laden, our security has been heightened and we've been instructed to report any and all suspicious activity. With no husband available to check for bad guys, I whipped out the cell phone to call the SPs (security police who patrol base housing). Not three minutes later I had two Airman doing a security check of the property. They assured me that the house was clear, but asked me to notify them if we noticed anything missing or strange.

RJ is now sleeping peacefully in his room, but I'm having a hard time winding down. Did I leave the door open? We were in a bit of a hurry when we left, but I always lock the door - which obviously means I shut it. So how did it end up open? Maybe I forgot this time - Pregnant Brain will do that to you at times. But the whole thing shook me a little too much, and I find myself waiting up for Husby to get home at midnight. Maybe then I'll be able to sleep.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Birth Options

This baby's birth approaches, and while I continue to tell myself that we have plenty of time to prepare, the time of preparations is upon us. As I prepare myself for the delivery of another child, I look back at the experience we had bringing RJ into the world and find myself wondering if all the drugs I had were really necessary. After all, women have been birthing babies for thousands of years - there's got to be something better than hooked up to machines, laying in bed, waiting for a stranger to tell me what to do.

Enter friends who've delivered naturally. With these women to answer my questions and reassure me that my body can, in fact, handle this, I've set out on a course toward a (more) natural birth. In Kansas, where we'll be in a matter of weeks, I found an instructor in the Bradley Method who I plan to contact upon our arrival. Hopefully, Husby and I will be able to find an hour or so a week without RJ (ha!) to meet with her and learn all the things that can help us work together to birth this child. While I'm not completely opposed to pain meds (lets face it, I'm a bit of a wimp), I would like to make it farther on my own and maybe even avoid an epidural.

By no means do I make any promises, other than to have a healthy baby in the end, but I want to give myself more options this time around. This could all be a total failure, but a girl can at least try, right?

Sunday, May 1, 2011

May Day

As I write this, my grandfather is sleeping in a hospital bed while his children (and grandchildren) make plans to see him one last time. We're not expecting him to be with us much longer, and while there is sadness in that, there is relief as well. Relief for him from his pain and suffering, and relief for us being confident in his destination when he leaves this life. Now, we wait. My phone is never far from my side, and each buzz stirs my adrenaline. The day is coming, and we are doing our best to prepare for the departure of this beloved man. My heart aches for our earthly loss and yet in the same beat rejoices for his heavenly gain. Parting is such sweet sorrow.