Thursday, December 30, 2010

Christmas Morning

We woke up Christmas morning at my mom's house this year, and this was the first year Mark and I stayed up and set up Lucy's "Santa" gifts, (generously provided by Dee Dee and Grandpa this year) It was so much fun getting things ready for her, and its weird to think that we are going to be doing this every year for a long time! We didn't really push the whole Santa Clause thing on her this year, but we did set some things out because its tradition in our family. I figure her peers and friends will tell her enough of about Santa in the future, so we wanted to focus on it being Jesus' birthday, and she sang to him that morning while we were opening presents. It was so sweet.


The Santa set up


She loves her laptop! She woke up with a really bad rash and you can see how swollen her face is in this picture....unfortunately her and mommy were both pretty sick on Christmas Day.


I warned my mom ahead of time that the boots were gonna be the biggest hit, and they were. She put them on first thing and didn't take them off all Christmas morning.


Opening her stocking...with the boots on :)


Her own doctor kit! Now she won't have to play with mommy's stethoscope.


Checking Dee Dee's blood pressure


Taking a rest from all the excitement


Leave it to the single uncle to buy her a whistle necklace....thanks Jake :) You can kind of see part of her rash in this picture.


Practicing the whistle...boots are still on


And of course Heidi and Conan had a great Christmas too. Except for being forced to wear demeaning hats and having their picture taken so we humans could laugh and point. They got treats for it later :)


More pics to come later!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

In case you're wondering why Lucy's hair is always in pigtails these days....








That's why.

Friday, December 10, 2010

This week was a big week for me pregnancy-wise. Last Sunday was the 24 week mark, which all you medical professionals and pregnancy connoisseurs will know is the age of viability. Being a medical professional AND a bit of a paranoid mama this go round, I have been counting down the days to the age of viability. If something were to happen I know now that my baby would at least have a chance at survival outside of the womb, so it was a huge milestone for me.

On Thursday I had an appointment with the high risk OB, and after another very in depth ultrasound, it was confirmed that baby girl is healthy and growing and there are no longer any reasons why I should be followed by a specialist, so I am officially out of the high risk category! The specialist was fabulous, and I absolutely loved that ultrasound tech, but I am SO glad to not have to visit that office anymore. It was like I was just waiting for them to find something else wrong with her or with me.....but it's all good now and I'm just a regular old pregnant gal with all the normal symptoms and problems that go along with pregnancy and nothing more. Which makes me very grateful.

With Lucy, I don't really remember meeting any of the big milestones of pregnancy. I definitely took her pregnancy for granted, partly because it was unplanned but partly because I was naive and unscarred. This time around I have been much more cautious. Not necessarily by following all the pregnancy "rules" (cuz I've never been much of a rule follower....) but more in my mindset. I haven't started to get her room ready, I still check to see if I'm bleeding every time I go to the bathroom, I worry if I haven't felt her kick enough that day, I haven't started nesting or getting any of the baby gear out, I don't talk about the pregnancy much. I guess these are just ways I protect myself and guard my heart. It's not out of lack of faith, it's just out of experience. I know that 2 out of my past 3 pregnancies have ended in heartache, and so naturally that is what my mind expects. My heart expects the Lord to be faithful and give us a healthy baby girl in March, but my mind is logical and the odds are not in my favor. But with these two milestones, I feel like the odds are finally starting to be in my favor. With every week that goes by, the chance of her surviving outside the womb are greater and the risk of complications goes down. My mind and my heart are at war with one another, one completely trusting and hoping, and the other preparing for the worst. Plus add all the fun pregnancy emotions and mood swings and you'll realize why I seem so crazy sometimes :)

I've also had a hard time connecting to her. In a way I don't WANT to connect to her, not yet. I'm praying daily for more confidence and reassurance, and I keep thinking that after every doctor's appointment I'll have this moment where I go, "I'm actually pregnant and having a baby!" but it hasn't happened....I mean I have moments where I think about the nursery and want to buy her a little pink outfit, but most moments I don't think about it, and I kind of forget that I'm pregnant. Mark has to remind me to lay down and rest and take care of myself because I forget to drink water and nap and it's not until I'm having contractions or getting a migraine from the lack of food or sleep that I realize maybe I should take it easy. Probably the opposite of what most people would do in my situation, but you don't really know what you would do if you were in my situation until you're in it.

So I'm coping the best way I know how, while trying to remain positive and get excited, because before we know it we're gonna be blind-sided by this new little life that I wasn't "expecting" or preparing for because I was too busy worrying.


Friday, December 3, 2010

Blackmail for the Future...

I can't believe I'm posting these....but they're too good to keep to myself. We've been working on Lucy going potty without any help at all (pulling pants on and off, wiping, etc....) and to my surprise she picked up rather quickly. In fact, most of the time she doesn't even tell me she has to go anymore, she goes on her own and I hear about it afterwards. Well, this was one of the first attempts at going potty all by herself....








Obviously after this incident we worked on how to get the toilet paper off the roll without using the entire roll to wipe...guess mommy forgot to teach that part...you live and learn....

Friday, November 26, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving from the Campbell Clan!


Monday, November 15, 2010

Shutterfly

My last post was about our photo shoot for our Christmas cards, so I bet you're wondering where I'm gonna get my cards from. No? Well I'm gonna tell you anyway.....Shutterfly!! In years past I have either used Snapfish or some other card company that I probably shouldn't be mentioning in a post dedicated to bragging on Shutterfly. I have noticed that a lot of Christmas cards, birth announcements, and photo cards we have received from friends are from Shutterfly. I've never used them so I thought this year I would give it a try. But being the frugal mama that I am, I decided I would create a shopping cart with this year's Christmas cards on both Shutterfly's AND Snapfish's website, to see who had the better deal. Because if there's a better deal out there, I'm gonna make sure I get it.

So I spent an hour or so uploading pics and designing our Christmas card on each website. I had my husband pick which cards he liked best and shockingly he picked the two cards I had created on Shutterfly! I actually liked their selection better too. And honestly, it took me less than half the time to create the cards on Shutterfly than Snapfish. Their website was much more user friendly, and even though I had never used their website before, I found myself clicking and uploading and editing MUCH faster than on Snapfish. I'm not even lying.

So Shutterfly's cards were prettier, the website was easier and faster, AND whadya know when I went to check out, they were CHEAPER too! Even after I used my 25% coupon on Snapfish, Shutterfly was still cheaper. So I'm sold, and I think I'm gonna be one happy customer with our cards this year.

I also created a calendar on both websites and was very disappointed with the lack of layouts that Snapfish offered....so I got a calendar from Shutterfly too!

Here's a link to everything I used this year:




Oh and in case you haven't figured it out by now, Bloggers get 50 free holiday cards from Shutterfly! Sign up here


Friday, November 12, 2010

Photo Shoot

Mark had a rare day off yesterday so we decided to take advantage of the gorgeous weather and take some pictures for our Christmas card. They turned out pretty good for setting a camera on a table and pressing the 10 second timer :) I really need to invest in a stand.


that's a really big tongue...






Ignore the fact that I look like a cow. I should have picked a more flattering shirt.








So thankful for an entire day with my husband, and for this perfect fall weather we are having!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Halfway

Today is my 20 week mark.

I feel like jumping up and down, I feel not moving so that nothing will go wrong; I feel like rejoicing, I feel like crying; I feel like pinching myself to make sure its not a dream.

Although I am beyond thrilled and grateful that this pregnancy has progressed so well, I can't help but mourn the babies I lost. Because every milestone I reach with this pregnancy, I am reminded that I never got to reach with my other two babies. I never saw their heartbeat on ultrasound, I never felt them kick, I never found out their genders. It makes me miss them, and makes me want to experience all of those things with them. There is a common misconception that when you miscarry, that getting pregnant again will "replace" the baby you lost. Of course anyone who has ever lost a baby knows this is not true, but everyone who hasn't acts like it is. And really at times this pregnancy has made my losses feel all the more real to me.

I want to be clear that my journey through miscarriage is not over. It will never be over until I hold those babies in Heaven, because I am forever their mother. I am so grateful for the outlet this blog has been, and the outpouring of prayers and support I have received from friends, family, and people I've never met. But just because I'm pregnant with a healthy baby girl doesn't mean it's all over and everything's better and I'm not hurting anymore. BUT, I do want to rejoice each milestone of this pregnancy and praise the Lord for His faithfulness in keeping this baby strong and healthy. I guess what I'm saying is, don't be surprised if one day I'm posting ultrasound pictures and gushing about this pregnancy, and the next I'm posting about how I'm hurting and missing the other babies. It's a rollercoaster ride. I'm caught in the middle of these emotions.

I am grateful, amazed, and humbled that the Lord has given us this baby. But I am human, and I still hurt and I still question and I still wonder what those babies would have been like. I am learning that I will never completely recover. It's getting easier every day, and my Heavenly Father has healed me more than I thought possible. But I will always remember them and always long for them.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Halloween

So I'm a terrible mother and completely forgot my camera when we took Lucy trick or treating for the first time. We didn't do anything for Halloween last year because I didn't think she would get it, but she really liked it this year.... except for a few "scary" houses we will NOT be revisiting next year :) We went to my Aunt Traci's house for family dinner and trick or treating and we had so much fun! Unfortunately all I had was my phone to take pics on so these are bad quality, and I didn't even get very many because my phone was dying....basically I failed capturing this event.


Me and Tinkerbelle



Lucy and Abbie



My sweet Tinkerbelle!

Friday, October 29, 2010

Our PINK blessing

Yesterday we found out we are having a baby girl! It wasn't quite the carefree and giddy circumstances we found out with Lucy, as this time Mark and I were alone in a high risk waiting room, waiting not only to find out the sex but also to find out if there is anything physically wrong with our baby. Joyfully her anatomy is "perfect" as the dr. said and he doesn't anticipate any problems. They didn't release me from the high risk category yet, but hopefully one more visit in December and I'll be normal again :)

We are thrilled to be having another girl. I never had a sister growing up (although I have two amazing sisters now :) so I am excited that Lucy will have a sister....fighting over clothes and boys and all that fun stuff. Oh man.

Here are some pictures from the ultrasound yesterday. I've been so fortunate to have so many ultrasounds through this pregnancy, it has given me so much confidence and confirmation that our baby is healthy and growing.

Profile shot


No boy parts here!


Five sweet little toes


Thank you Lord for this miracle!

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Mark ran to the gas station the other night to get me some ginger-ale because I wasn't feeling good (yes, I'm sick still, even in my 2nd trimester) and he took Lucy with him. He said while he was checking out he felt a little tug on his leg and Lucy looked up at him and handed him a sucker and said, "here you go daddy". Obviously, he bought it for her, and when they got home she looked like this...






This sweet girl has her daddy wrapped around her little finger!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

ABCs

We've been working on our abc's lately...


video

Monday, October 18, 2010

I made a wreath!

I'm not a crafty person. My mom says I am but that's just because I'm craftier than her :) I went to the store to buy a fall wreath and about fell over when I saw how expensive they were, and they weren't even that pretty! So my non-crafty self decided to get crafty and make a wreath. Here's my finished product. I'm pretty proud.





I thought it turned out pretty decent for my first try. Happy Fall!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Blessing

"In every genre of biblical literature and every stage of biblical history, God is seen pouring out his grace on his people for the sake of his glory among all peoples."

"God blessed his people in a miraculous way so that his salvation would be made known among all peoples."

"God really is in the business of blessing his people in unusual ways so his goodness and greatness will be declared among all peoples."

- David Platt, in his book Radical.

"This is what the Sovereign Lord says: It is not for your sake, O house of Israel, that I am going to do these things, but for the sake of my holy name...Then the nations will know that I am the Lord..."

- Ezekial 36


The Lord has taught me so much this past year, and one of the things I am learning now is that He blesses his people not for our own sake, but for his glory's sake, so that His name will be proclaimed and people will come to salvation. Keep this in mind as I tell you a story.

We joined our small group a little over a year ago. We had just suffered our first miscarriage and were still pretty shook up, but we didn't really talk about it much. As I shared in my miscarriage story, our group was wonderful and a huge source of encouragement to me, especially around the time of my due date. After my second miscarriage in March, our vulnerability really showed through and we grieved openly with our group. It was during this grieving time that two other couples shared that they were struggling with infertility. We all grieved together, and I really feel like I have a special bond with those two girls because our hearts all longed for the same thing. I remember one night, after a pretty intense small group meeting filled with tears and crying out to God, our small group leader put all six of us (the three couples) in the middle and the rest of the group laid hands on us and prayed over us. I think about that night all the time.

Miraculously, graciously, and in HIS timing, the Lord has laid his hand on all three of us, and we are all three pregnant, due back to back, in February, March, and April. I asked the girls if I could briefly share this story and both of them said, of course! And I know its because they feel the same way that I do, that we just want God to be glorified in this blessing, because it is not for our own sake that He has chosen to bless us with children, but for HIS name's sake, that he may receive glory and that somehow, someone who hears this might come to know Him personally.

So I guess this is my big pregnancy announcement. I didn't want it to be centered around us, because it's not. The Lord has carried me through my first trimester, which at times were filled with fear and doubt. But the fear is slowly turning into excitement. Thank you to everyone who has ever prayed for us. The prayers were and still are felt, and I am so grateful. I am due March 27. It is with great joy and and humility that we embrace this new blessing.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Baking with Mommy






I love these days at home with my sweet Lucy!

Friday, October 1, 2010

Heidi turns 4

Happy Birthday to the best dog in the world. We love our Heidi so much. She has definitely lost a lot of attention since Lucy was born but she never complains :) She loves Lucy like a sister and protects her like her own baby. We couldn't ask for a better dog.


We love you Heidi!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

My Story of Miscarriage



I have felt compelled to post this for quite a while, but wasn't really sure how to do it. I mean this is about as personal as it gets, and to just post it publicly on my blog didn't really feel like the most tactful way to go about it....however....the outpouring of input and advice and support I have received from all of my other personal blog posts made me realize that I've already put myself out there, so why not give you guys the full story. Plus the Lord has really shown me lately that He gives and takes away for a reason, to bring Himself glory, and if I don't point to Him at the end of this then it's in vain. And how can I NOT point to Him?


So here they are...the stories of my miscarriages. They are pretty graphic and straight forward. I wrote all three of these posts at once knowing that one day I should share them. Feel free to read, feel free to skip over and ignore, I wouldn't blame you either way. I just want people to hear my story and see how the Lord has changed my life and changed my story. I know not everyone wants to talk about their miscarriages, and that's fine. This is just how I cope. Please feel free to contact me if you have experienced miscarriage and need someone to talk to.

The First One




Wednesday, September 15, 2010

More Swimming

And just to really show off Lucy's swimming skills, here she is on Labor Day...


video

Friday, September 10, 2010

Swim lessons

So.....Lucy finished her swim lessons in June, and it has taken me THIS long to post it on the blog. We took several different videos during the lessons, but Mark compiled segments of them into one video. The first few seconds are her very first lesson...you can tell she didn't like it very much. It's amazing to watch her progress though. At the end she had to pass the lessons by turning onto her back to float fully clothed. Niki was her instructor and she was amazing. I would recommend these lessons to anyone with a baby or toddler.

You can check out the website if you're interested www.infantswim.com

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Phone time with Daddy

Mark started his new job a few weeks ago, and we are SO grateful for the Lord's provision in this area. But it has been hard adjusting to him being gone so much. We really miss him during the day. He has been great about calling during his lunch hour and both Lucy and I look forward to talking to him for this short time. I love how Lucy just lights up as she talks to her daddy on the phone.




She is so in love with her daddy....and so am I :)

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

The fun things we've been doing lately....

Potty Training!! Oh the joys of potty training. The obligatory public bathroom visits, the car rides screaming because she has to go RIGHT now, the endless amounts of peeing, flushing, washing.....its exhausting! I'm exhausted. But all the hard work paid off because Lucy is potty trained.

We took the "boot camp" approach. Which pretty much sums up my parenting technique. Whenever a new milestone or season of change approaches, we dive in head first and never look back. It's always worked pretty well because Lucy is a lot like me in that respect. Just do it and be done with it.

I've been telling her for probably 2 months now that as soon as we get back from the beach, we are going to wear big girl panties and go in the potty. She has talked and talked about it and knew it was coming. This was good and bad. Good because it prepared her....bad because it meant I actually had to follow through. So we got back from the beach on a Saturday night. Took the day Sunday to go to church, rest, unpack.....woke up Monday morning and hit the potty full force! I put her in panties first thing that morning and she's been wearing them ever since! By day 4 she was potty trained. Seriously. The first two days I almost had mental breakdowns....then day 3 came and there was hope....then day 4 came and she was trained. Period. She has had maybe 3 accidents total since that day 4, which was 3 weeks ago. She is wearing diapers or pull ups while she sleeps, but I think she will be able to drop that soon.

If anyone cares about my approach, feel free to ask, but I won't bore you with the details on the blog. Let's just say it involved LOTS of asking, praising with songs and M&Ms, and loads of patience. Oh and an entire week of us not leaving the house....it takes dedication people! But like I said, I'm so glad to be done with it instead of dragging it on for months and months.


Sometimes Lucy got a little silly while sitting on the potty



We took the potty with us everywhere. The kitchen....



Her bedroom....




We even took it to the park with us the other day! (don't have that picture to post...but trust me, it was hilarious). I'm so proud of Lucy and how well she did. She never gave me any resistance to this big step in her life. One down, hopefully many more to go :)

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Lucy's Birthday Party

Better late than never! Here are a few pics from Lucy's birthday party. We just had a few friends/family over, grilled some hot dogs, and let the kids go at the new pool.


Grandpa showing Lucy her pool


Gabbie giving me a look...











Lucy and Lilly show us how you're SUPPOSED to eat a cupcake.