I am 37 weeks today- I never made it to 38 weeks with Jase, so it'll be interesting to see what happens.  I'm so tired I can barely type, so I'll just post a few pictures from the Christmas festivities. My cousin took a picture of my entire immediate family, but I haven't gotten it yet.  It was awesome to be together for Christmas for the first time in several years!

Cousins on Christmas Eve: Chail (6) holding Jase, Rocky (4) holding baby sister Ginger (almost 1). All three belong to my oldest brother and his wife.

Jase opening his Pillow Pet from his Great Aunt Sharon on Christmas Eve. I love how excited Chuck is!

Family of (almost) 4 on Christmas Day- with the Elf on the Shelf hanging close by. Got Jase's Christmas PJ's at a thrift store for $3- so fun!

Birthday cake for Jesus- keeping up the tradition from Chuck's side of the fam. 

A night at Buffalo Wild Wings to celebrate my Dad's Bday with my parents and younger brother. Good friends blessed us by baby-sitting. It was bliss.

Some Answers

I'm really thankful Jase's Pediatrician's office is open on Sunday mornings!  After chatting with a nurse on the phone Saturday afternoon, it was decided we needed to take Jase in after 5 days of struggling.  Long story short, our little guy has a double ear infection.  Yikes.  =(  No wonder he has been miserable.  Sigh.  I'm very thankful for answers!  I'm always so relieved when the doctor actually finds something instead of just saying, "He has a virus".  We were able to start him on his meds yesterday, which is great because we're supposed to be around family with other kids over Christmas.  I'm hoping by the time we get together with everybody he'll be feeling much better.  For now we continue to snuggle, watch cartoons, spoon-feed, and watch the Christmas lights.  Thank you God for answers!

God has kept me pretty healthy, thankfully!  Chuck, not so much.  Poor guy is pretty miserable.  He took a sick day yesterday, and slept most of the afternoon.  I was glad because he usually only takes a nap for about 10 minutes.  As far as Baby Girl goes, she seems to be doing well.  I have an appointment today to get tested for strep, so hopefully I won't have to be on antibiotics during labor.  Chuck and I went to bed talking about how overwhelmed we are already to take on the care of a second baby.  Chuck did say he feels concerned for me being home with two babies while he's at work- for some reason having him say that made me feel even more supported.

This is officially an incredibly boring post.  Maybe this post has been able to help some of you doze off for a nice, lovely nap.

Here are some pictures from the past several weeks, pre-infestation.

Our first big snow of the season! Jase loves to go with Chuck when he lets Jovie out.

One of the teens made Jase an adorable snowman cake pop- he devoured it!  So sweet of her!

Again and Again and Again

Jase finally got better from a bout with fever and HFM virus for 10 days, only to return to the nursery for one Sunday to be plagued with yet ANOTHER illness.  The fever is back, and he is so miserable. He has some sort of cold, but the term "cold" just doesn't seem to do this illness justice.  I know he feels awful because he wants me to hold him all the time.  That's not my boy- he is an on-the-go kid, with little time for Mama snuggles.  Yesterday I was desperately trying to get him to eat something, so I held him in my lap and spoon-fed him some oatmeal while he laid his head on my chest.  Normally he wants nothing to do with anyone spoon-feeding him.  He is a man who likes to use his own fork or spoon or shove his own food into his mouth.  It's all just so sad.  And frustrating.  And stressful.  The kid is sick more than he is healthy.  That blasted church nursery.  I'm seriously considering skipping church until Jase is in college.  And I'm not even going to THINK about putting my tiny little newborn in there.  Maybe I should ask for a plastic bubble to cover our house for the rest of winter for Christmas.

I had intentions of writing this exciting post about a Scripture memory opportunity I read about through Beth Moore's blog.  I'm still excited about it, and am still going to share, but snot and coughing and congestion and phlegm and fevers and Motrin and watery eyes and misery are so strong on my mind it's hard to focus.  Instead of me giving my two cents about memorizing verses, check out Beth's most recent post that has gotten both me and Chuck pretty excited.  We're going to be working at memorizing two verses a month in 2015.  Lord knows I need it.  And I love the accountability, help, and structure Beth's team offers.  Let me know if you decide to participate, as well.  It would be fun to do this with others.


Now I'm off to try to get a couple more hours of sleep in before my little sickie bug wakes up.  Chuck's alarm just went off- it's 6am on a Saturday, people.  That's my man.  Sad to say, but I get my best hours of sleep after he gets up in the morning.  I am SUCH a morning and alone sleeper.  Thank you God that it's Saturday.  Oh, it's exactly one month until Baby Girl is due.  Hearing the stories about Mary being "heavy with child" has taken on a whole new meaning this Christmas.  If anyone tried to put me anywhere near a donkey right now...


Just a few ways God has provided for us lately:

A family member got Jase a MUCH NEEDED car seat for his weight and size for Christmas!  At Thanksgiving I had said, "It would be a blessing if Jase could ride up to my parent's in a car seat that fit him."  God totally agreed.

We weren't going to be able to send out Christmas pictures or cards this year, but we got a deal that included 100 picture cards and envelopes for $8!  God knows it means SO much to me to be able to send them out.

We made it to pay day with one dinner to spare!

After about 10 days, Jase is FINALLY fever-free!

The other day was "just one of those days".  I decided not to complain to Chuck, so he had no idea how hard the day had been.  He ended up arriving home an hour early that day.  I could have collapsed with relief!  That same day I received the sweetest package from a family member all for baby girl.  It meant so much to me.  I'm always in awe how God provides me with gifts because He knows that's how I feel loved.

Chuck and I found the perfect Christmas gift for Jase.  We haven't gotten it yet, but I feel better knowing we have a great idea.  (If you're dying of curiosity, we're going to get him a plastic shopping cart. They make them in boy colors, too.  ;)  He absolutely loves pushing things around.  He rolls his high chair all over the kitchen, as well as my desk chair.  He also loves putting things "in and out".  $8 shopping cart = perfect!)

There are no guarantee's when it comes to Jase's nap time lately.  I'm always hoping for the morning nap because I NEED the morning nap!!! Yesterday I was so tired I was falling asleep on the couch while he was running around.  I took a gamble and stuck him in his crib, hoping he would play for a little bit so I could sleep and he could be safe at the same time.  I crashed instantly, and when I woke up he was asleep, too.  I even had time to shower before he woke up.  A true Christmas miracle!

I'm feeling dangerously close to falling asleep on the couch again- the real reason I am posting right now!  Anything to keep me awake.

So thankful for God's unending provisions, blessings, and gifts!

Photo Magic

A very sweet and generous friend gave us the gift of a maternity photo shoot.  I think I've mentioned my "Wish List for God", and having a maternity photo shoot was on that list.  It was a deep desire of mine to be able to frame an intimate picture of Baby Girl and I while I was pregnant with her (to hang in her nursery).  If not for this fabulous gift, we would not have had these special moments captured.  In one of Jase's little Christmas books I read to him this morning, it lists a definition of blessing: "a good gift from God".  Perfect way to define this photo shoot!  On a side note:  I love having books to read to Jase that teach about the goodness of God already.

Leigh Grames was an absolute gem to work with!  You can check out her beautiful website here:  http://leighgphotography.com (SPECIAL OFFER FOR A PHOTO SHOOT WITH LEIGH AT THE BOTTOM OF THIS POST!) She made me feel so comfortable, which I find very important.  There is something about a pregnant tummy that feels very personal, and she captured that essence exactly how I would have wanted.  She also paid very close attention to details like the look on my face, my bangs constantly flying around, the odd way the bow on my sweater sometimes fell, and the wrinkles in my sweater that made me look puffy.  

The only downside of the shoot was that Jase wasn't too thrilled about it.  He is SUCH a smiley boy, but there is something about the official photo shoot that turns him into a different little guy.  I think it's because he loves to run free at all times, and being in a still photo is not his style.  The sad thing is, when we got home he felt hot to me, and I realized he had a fever!  I felt terrible for trying to make him be happy in a photo shoot when he was miserable with fever.  Regardless, he still looks so handsome to me.  My heart beats for these two men of mine!  And it also beats in a special way for this little girl of mine.  Blessed.   

Chuck really likes the picture on the right because of the unique barn door at the top.  We think it was used for hay bailing at one point.  We love a rustic barn.

Our growing little family!  Plus, the tenderness I feel towards our growing baby girl is so obvious in the one on the right.

The sweetest baby boy I have ever known.  Can you spot the mini-marshmallow bribes in his mouth? ;)

***Leigh Grames has graciously offered a special deal for any of you local blog readers.  If you book a photography session with her before March of 2015, and use the promo code: Full of Joy, she will give you a $35 credit.  She does far more than maternity shoots, so check her out here !  You can also contact her via email: leighgphoto@gmail.com.  We highly recommend her!  

Thank you so much for the wonderful afternoon, Leigh!  You are a great, great blessing to us.