Sunday, June 28, 2015

23 Weeks

Well it's been about 11 weeks since I announced our pregnancy news. It's been a wonderful blessing that God has given us to carry this baby this far. I wish I would have set forth to begin these little updates earlier but, life sometimes gets in the way and computer time is pushed behind. I have loved every second of being home again. 
How Far Along? 23 Weeks
Total Weight Gain/Loss: 10 Pounds

Baby Related Purchases: This time around, I have made a pact with myself that I will not spend too much on baby related items, and remember the important parts of adding a blessing to our family. We have purchased a crib, nursing pillow, pump, crib set, bassinet, bobby pillow, and many cute sleepers all USED. I am a huge consignment finder now, and hope to not purchase anything new except for diapers & wipes :)

Maternity Clothes:  I wear a lot of skirts when we leave the house. While I am home working in the home, I do wear my husbands gym shorts to keep cool, and a large shirt to cover. I did find a few things on sale at Target, and Motherhood Maternity a few weeks ago. I am thankful that while I was teaching I was not that big and could make my regular clothes just work. Now, there is not much of a reason to buy new maternity dress up clothes. I make it just work :)

Sleep: I am normally asleep by 9:30 each night. I wake up around 7:30. Some nights are easier than others.

Movement: I started feeling the baby move around 20 weeks for sure. Before that I felt little twinks here and there, but for real movement it was around 20 weeks.

What I miss: If I had to pick something, it would be my working habits. I LOVE to work outside and just work work work. I have had to SLOW way down! I am in pain in the afternoon/evenings if I do too much so I have to really limit myself. I like to be busy, and be working.

Cravings: Ice water, Popscicles

Anything making you queasy or sick: Working too much and being in the heat for too long.

Gender: IT"S A BOY!!!!
Labor Signs: None

Symptoms: Full bladder, pressure in the evenings.

Best moments this week: 
Feeling really well most of this week. I had a hard 22 weeks, so this week was a breath of new grounds. I was so happy to see week 22 go!
Looking forward to:
More and more kicking from baby boy.
Size of Baby: Papaya (8in, 1.2 lbs)

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Small Trip together

We enjoyed a small trip together a few weeks ago. It was an amusement park, and a water park.
WE all had a fun time together.

I never want to forget these days!

Saturday, June 20, 2015

Summer so Far

There is something about summertime.

It is sweet. And Slow. And I Love it!

We rarely have any real place to be, and we can all be together.

Roasting marshmallows, and making smores together. They can be sticky, and make you so thirsty, but they are soo good!! My boys find such joy in building fires. Finding the sticks, and balling up the newspaper, adding the wood. They love it all.

Sticky, sweaty, boy. All boy!

Baseball season is over, and our oldest son got his first trophy. The completed his first "organized" sport and was very proud of himself. Little brother was too, can you tell?

They had a baseball party with lots of fun for the kids as a celebration for finishing.

I was so excited for baseball to be over to be honest. I didn't want anymore trips to the ball field, and didn't want to sweat anymore in the heat of the day. THEN, we get a phone call they want Karson to play all-stars. Now, I know what your thinking. Well you can say NO!!!!!

But, our boy wanted to soo bad. So we have been back to the ball field for all-star practices and they sure have been different than regular t-ball. There is much more involved and lots more expected, but I think my boy loves having this as his "job" right now. He considers small tasks given to him his "jobs" just as daddy has to do at work. He takes it seriously and I am thankful he is learning a very good character trait. Working hard to get better at achieving a goal.

Little brother is hanging right in there with mom. We are back to the ball fields playing and walking as brother has practices.

We have included lots of fun and slow times for the boys. Swimming is their favorite summer hobby. Kipton has learned to go under water and swim without his swim arms. He has to wear his ear plugs now that he has tubes and that poses as a struggle from time to time but he is getting more and more used to the ear plugs and remembers just about everytime we go somewhere.

The most fun we have had is at bible school this past week. My boys learned so much and are STILL singing the songs and talking about what all they have learned. I am thrilled with what God has done for all of the children there.

Here are a few pictures of our week during bible school.I was busy teaching alongside of other women in the preschool class, but managed to sneak a few pics of my boys. 

Friday, June 12, 2015

Keeping Chickens

We have raised chickens for 5 years now. We have learned so much throughout the years.
It took us 3 years to finally have a good, safe place for them. That is really the most important aspect of raising chickens. No matter where you live, there are predators. They will come, in time.
We have learned what works, and what doesn't. Unfortunately, that takes a lot of trial and error.
Now we have around 20 hens and 1 rooster. That seems to be the best number for us.
If you have more than one rooster, trouble comes. They fight, and they start pecking the girls too much and you'll see bald spots on their backs. I like just one rooster.
As you get into keeping chickens, you will find what chicken breeds you like best, and what ones you don't prefer as much. I like a chicken who lays like clock work once a day, and is more of a big stock breed. That basically means they are "BIGGER" in their belly/hips area.
You want to make sure you have outside roaming area for your chickens. Some people can let their chickens roam free, but that only works well if you have a guard dog to protect them.
We have tried doing that and it has cost us a lot of chickens. We just have too many predators here in West Virginia. So we have our barn and inside their coop they have a "chicken door" where they can come in and out. We have it connected to this fenced in area so they can come out and roam but still be within an area.
Sometimes it is best to raise the chickens from babies if you want them to be ok with children. We have found this to be particularly true with our boys. We have bought already laying hens, and we can't get within 5 feet of them. They have been raised by adults normally and have stayed in a closed in barn and are pretty scared of little humans.
When you raise them as chicks, they are used to the kids and seem much more friendly as adult hens.
We keep our chicks in a separate cage. This helps the chicks only stay with other chicks that are their size, and also so they won't get picked on by the big girls. I normally keep them in this cage for 4 months. Then I will test run how they will do with the big girls.
I will put one chick in, and if I see that they are going to peck her to death, I will get her out and try again in a few weeks.  
Some of the main things I love about chickens are:
1. Fresh Eggs DAILY
2. Not a high maintenance animal
3. They are away from the house and don't mess your house up :)
4. They are entertaining to watch
5. They are really loving. Especially when you've had one for many years!
If you want to start raising chickens, but don't know where to start please e-mail me.
I would be happy to answer any questions you have.

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Saying Good bye to Kindergarten!

During the last week of school Karson had his last Kindergarten field trip.
They went to a nearby lake and had inflatables, face painting, baseball, playground fun, and a cookout. It was fun to see him with his school friends and he enjoying having Kevin, Kipton, and me there.
I think the main thing he loved was having his brother around to show to all of his buddies. He loves his brother and loves to introduce him to the other children. It is very special to watch them together.
I can't believe that Kindergarten is over, and another year has passed. Next year Kipton will fill his shoes and be in Kindergarten with the same teacher. We are blessed to have her again.  
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Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Karson's Graduates from Kindergarten

Karson had his graduation last week. It was a busy one for sure!
His Kindergarten had been working on a play to perform for the parents the day of their graduation/awards ceremony. I got a note a few months ago stating that Karson would have a special speaking part, and that he was going to be a "yellow jacket" in their play called "BUGZ".
They wanted Karson to have a special yellow jacket costume but guess who will NOT wear a costume and has never liked dressing up as a toddler. Yep, my boy!
So this proved to be a little difficult but I tried making the costume as much "clothes" like and less costume like. He was happy and so was the teacher. He was a cute yellow jacket who did all of his speaking with ease. We were very proud.
After the play he received his awards. He ended up with 4 different awards from his Kindergarten year. A reading award for reading all sight words, a math mastery award, a Kindergarten certificate, and a STAR speller award. He was proud!
Karson had a great year in Kindergarten. Not one complaint from either side. He went from a small preschool to a large Kindergarten class and he did it with ease. I was very proud of him for sticking it out everyday even when he just had a blah kind of day.
He made lots of friends, and was one of the student's of the months for January for using self-control. He always had good reports and went very far in his reading and math.
He had a wonderful teacher Mrs. Bowens. We will never forget her. Kipton is so lucky to get her next year. She is one of the best in our county.
Now, my baby is off to 1st grade ;(
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Kipton Graduates from Pre-School

I'm catching up on all of May's activities. Shew!
Kipton graduated from his little pre-school. He had a good year and made lots of friends. He grew in his social skills, and learned how to be a good friend to others.
His teacher texted me the night before his graduation because she wanted to tell me just how great Kipton has been in her class. That he was a leader to the other kids, and everyone looked up to him for his good behavior and kind heart.
He sure is special!
He is still a small little guy and still only 4 years old. He is much ready to go onto Kindergarten but will be one of the youngest in his class because of his late summer birthday. I am positive he will soar!
Brothers, Forever
Just the Boys
Kipton Lee - 4 years Old
His class got up on stage and sang a few songs. It was cute. They received a little ribbon and certificate saying they had completed Pre-K.
I hope my boys are forever this close. Karson was so excited for Kipton to be finished with Pre - K. Now, they will both be at the same school next year.
I love these milestone moments, but wow they are happening so fast!!
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