Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Monkey Business

Our photographer friend, Sukie, is super woman and manages to take everyone in Americas picture over the weekends on top of being a wonderful mom, wife and full time worker at the medical clinic.  Not to mention her and her husband are in the middle of building a new house and moving into it between - - well, I don't really know when she has time to move or sleep or eat.  With that said when I got a text last night that Hill's pictures were ready I was so excited to see them plus I wasn't expecting such a fast turn around.  I will post some here and there, but I have to show you Hill with the monkey.

Hey, Monkey!  Let's Play!

Cuddly Monkey

Sweet Monkey Kisses

Monkey, You're My Best Friend!

Monday, March 22, 2010

Big Busy Weekend!

Hill has been a busy bee! Maybe we are starting him out right, he totally prefers to not sit at home, but to go out and see the world! Not only has the boy visited New Orleans, LA by the time he was 13 days old and Memphis, TN by the time he was three weeks old he has cumulatively been to 3 states. He's been more places in his 10 weeks than most people have been in their whole life!

This beautiful weekend was no exception for outdoor activity and adding new adventures to Hills’ repertoire. Friday day Hill and his Daddy went out to Mr. Al’s cabin to help him fix his satellite dish. I have a feeling that this is the first of many trips to come with ‘the boys.’ Hill got to see moo cows and donkeys and tractors and our ski boat because that is where we store it during the winter. (We will get to how ready he is for that in a minute) We told Daddy to take the camera so he could have his picture taken with the donkeys, but he forgot. We will have to do that soon. Then Friday night Hill and I walked down to the neighbors’ house, the Davis’. Mrs. Leanne and Mr. Brent are always so nice, they blackened crappie for dinner and we watched a movie. Friday night Hill slept for about 9 hours. What a fun long day!

Hill loves Mrs. Leanne. He knows how to butter her up because we always tell him what good cookies, brownies and rice crispy treats she makes us all the time. He wants to be in her good graces.

So then Saturday was a big day and was full of firsts. Hill had his first ‘photo shoot.’ Mrs. Sukie came over to the house and took no less than 48,727,689,756 pictures of Hill. We had a blast. Well, I did. Hill would get frustrated from being naked or changing clothes…again, and his daddy was the only one that could make him smile. Thank goodness for Daddy! Sukie got some GREAT shots and I can’t wait to share them with yall. After having his pictures taken he had to take a nap. It’s hard work being so cute.

Once he woke up he had no idea it would be the best afternoon ever… we went to Wal-Mart! Yes, yes it is sad. The most happening place in Kosciusko is Wal-Mart. It was inevitable. I was going to have to take him there eventually. I couldn’t shelter him forever. After all, the kid visited New Orleans when he was 13 days old. If his tiny immune system could handle New Orleans then Wal-Mart should be a breeze! Oh boy, did he have fun! He even got his first sticker to commemorate the occasion. I told the greeter that this was his first visit and if she minded if I took a picture of her giving him the sticker. He was so excited!! I think he loves her. This picture just cracks me up, I love it.

Thanks greeter lady at Wal-Mart! You are truly the nicest lady in the whole world.

Hill wanted to play with her all day long.

As if that wasn’t enough excitement, Daddy bought him his first life jacket! Hill is officially ready for summer. He’s seen the boat and is psyched. I bought Baby Coppertone Wal-Mart this winter when it was $2 instead of $9 for JJ and I to use on the boys as we chill in the lake at the Country Club. I got Hill an adorable bathing suit with shirt and matching hat at Babies R Us. He is pretty much set. I even have a shovel and bucket for him to make sand castles or pies with. I guess I should take it one step at a time. Maybe he should learn to hold his head up first? After all, he’s only 10 weeks old.

So here is a picture of Hill lying down taking a nap in his life jacket.

Here is a picture of Hill sitting up in his life jacket. Not too comfy.
I think we must have to have water to make this work right.
Hill is a Capricorn.  Not associated with water.  Chip is an Aquarius and I am a Pices, both water signs.
It's inevitable that Hill love the water, it's in his blood.  I mean it must be if he can sleep in an extremely uncomfortable life jacket as his mother takes pictures.

So after another nap, we went to our new friends’ house – Jason and Gena. They are great and invited Hill to come over and play too. There was a house full of people and we had a great time.

Jason and Gena, our new friends that are cutie patooties!

Old friends were there like Mr. Ryan

And we always love Mrs. Kayla, she is so silly. 

After staying up too late we went home. As if Hill wasn’t the most precious sleeping snuggle bear the whole time we were at our new friends house he slept until 8am the next morning, ate then slept again until 10am. Thanks, Hill for letting Mommy get her snooze on. Thanks, Daddy for waking up with him.

So, we woke up Sunday mid morning and went to eat lunch in Louisville at Lake Tiak O’Khata. Those waitresses wanted to eat him up! I can’t say I don’t blame them. Then after lunch we went to the Louisville Wal-Mart because I was looking for a couple things in particular that they didn’t have in Kosy. This time Hill didn’t get a sticker, I don’t even think we saw a greeter?!? Anyway, it was ok we were on a mission. Chip needed a new tackle box and I wanted to get Hill and outdoor swing for his Easter present. We found both, and I also found that Hill’s formula is $3 cheaper at that Wal-Mart. Why is that? So, I stocked up.

We came back to Kosciusko and Chip organized his new tackle box into saltwater / freshwater compartments for our trip to the coast this coming weekend. JJ, Allen and Harvey are meeting me, Chip and Hill down in Diamondhead at the condo. The big boys are going to go fishing while the mommies and little boys go to the outlet mall and hang out. We hope to meet up with Aunt Jane Claire and our sweet cousins Madison and Addie while we are there.

Anyway, after a long long weekend of fun filled happiness we went to Chip’s dads house for dinner. We have a cheat night on our diet and had saved it up for Joyce’s cooking. We ate quail (that Chip hunted weekend before last), rice, gravy, green beans and bacon. Then we topped off the evening with a taste test of Little Debbie vs. Hostess Chocolate Cupcakes. Hands down, Little Debbie wins. No contest.

Hill was tuckered out with his Na Na.

What a great weekend.

Uncle Jason must have had a great weekend too.  He sent us this picture of the 13 lb. lobster claw he cooked the other day.  It's one claw was bigger than both of his hands! Have you EVER seen such?
I hope he's not planning to put it in that tiny pot on the stove!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Hill's Birth Day

On Tuesday, January 12, 2010 Chip and I woke up at about 4:30am. We set every alarm clock we could find and even had the hotel front desk ring us. If you recall, I made sure to explain the urgency to the person at the front desk that I was having a baby and couldn’t be late. They MUST call me to remind me. Like for some reason they wouldn’t, they never haven’t called me when I asked. True to their word, they called at 4:30 but I was already awake…imagine that!

I jumped up and turned to Chip and said…we are having a baby today! You ready, daddy? He assured me he was. I know I was ready! I showered and blow dried my hair, put on some jogging pants and a t-shirt since I knew once I got to the hospital they’d have me put on a gown anyway. I put on make-up, which I never do when I’m not at work, I had some photo ops ahead of me with my little tiny new life today so I must make a good first impression!

Chip and I gathered our things and my mom and were off to the hospital. My dad and step mom would follow soon after. We were at Woman’s Hospital at 5:30am sharp. I went through registration, which was a breeze because I had just done that Sunday when we had the water break / pee in my pants episode. They took me to a room in the labor section where Nurse Ratched started prepping me for my stay. She was such a negative Nellie that Chip and I kept looking at each other like gee whiz lady. This was going to be the best day of my life and I wasn’t going to let Sponge Bob Grouchy Pants ruin it. So, I decided to make small talk to figure out if she was really going to be my nurse the rest of the time. It was about 6:10 and I was hoping she was out with the next shift change and dirty laundry. As she missed every vein in my hand I asked if she had been here all night or if she was just coming on for the day. She said she’d been there all night. Wheew, thank goodness. Then so she wouldn’t catch onto my scheme I asked if she’d been busy delivering babies all night and how their shifts work. She assured me that at 7:00am she was outta here. Thank you Jesus ! As she continued to hook me up to blood pressure monitors and try to get in my IV Manna from Heaven arrived with her nice side kick. I think maybe she was just as glad as I was when they walked in because she let them know, in front of me, that she had other patients to tend to.

Manna from Heaven - I think her name was Trish or Tina, I feel awful for not knowing my guardian angels name but God love her and her side kick, who I can’t remember her name either…wow that’s awful – Anyway, they came in and we had a moment where we all just sort of looked at each other and tried not to laugh. T was so professional and had been doing this for a long time. She took my beat up hands where Nurse Ratched tried vigorously to get my IV in and 2 seconds later had that IV in there no problem. She finished getting me all cleaned me up for my surgery and gave Chip his daddy attire for surgery and off we went. At 7:00 am they rolled me into the OR where T was by my side the whole time. She never talked above a calming whisper once we got to the OR. She made me feel safe, this was not her first rodeo, I trusted her whole heartedly as she explained to me step by step what they would do and how it would feel and how to react. I needed her there. She stood by me as I sat on the cold tiny operating table and just held me close to her. I was shaking so bad. I was unsure if it was my nerves or because I was freezing. T and I watched as all the ladies prepared the cold metallic off white room with medical instruments and gauze and things I was sure they were going to use on me, but wished they wouldn’t. As if people couldn’t get any nicer or more helpful; Alan came in, he was the nurse anesthetist. I loved him so much I wanted to put him in my pocket. Too bad I only had on a gown and nada else so there was no pocket to put him in. He, just like T, explained step by step what would happen once the anesthesiologist came in. I had to have my spinal and was really nervous about it. The one thing I remember T saying multiple times and then Alan reiterated was when the anesthesiologist came in he was going to ask me a couple of questions and then have me hunch over and I’d be uncomfortable, but it was DIRE that I stood still. T suggested I focus on the clock that was directly in front of me on the wall when they had me do this. Then they said as soon as the doctor got my spinal going they would throw me on my back immediately. Alan and T were there for me, I fully trusted them to take total care of me. They had mentally prepared me for everything that was about to happen. If I lost focus I knew they’d be there to help me get back on track of what I needed to do. It was team work.

Chip was out in the hall the whole time. Evidently they have a bench right outside the OR for dads to sit until after the anesthesiologist comes. I heard Dr. North’s happy voice in the hall talking to Chip. He was just as comforting as T was. I felt safe instantly. Dr. North came in and started scrubbing in for surgery. As I was sitting there on the OR table with T holding me tight and Alan behind me getting his machinery ready I noticed the nice straight crease that Dr. North was sporting on his scrubs, I couldn’t not comment on them. I said, wow Dr. North does your wife iron your scrubs? Look at that crease! He said his cleaning lady did that. He probably could have cut me open to do my c section with that razor sharp crease. About that time Dr. S (can’t remember his name, but it started with an S) the anesthesiologist came in. He was a jocular old fella. He instantly lit up the room with his “let’s get this show on the road” attitude. He said, wow it’s cold in here. I said wouldn’t that help keep things sterilized? He assured me that just because it was cold didn’t mean it had to be sterilized. Well alrighty then, doc. He was right and I was nervous talking out of my head.

Dr. S did all the things Alan said he would. Asked me all the questions Alan said he would and then immediately started. I hunched over and stared at the clock. T was still at my side holding my hand reminding me to breathe and focus on the clock. It was 7:22am; I only watched the minute hand because the second hand was too distracting. My instructions from Dr. S were to let him know if at any time the needle didn’t feel straight as he inserted it. Yeeaaw, I felt it go in. Things were alright, T to my right reminding me to breathe - and Dr. S in my spine “moving to the left,” I said. He straightened it up and said OK and I felt Alan’s hand on my back where Dr. S was and about 97 people threw me down on my back. It was crazy. It felt crazy. I had been so nervous about the spinal and I had no reason to worry. Everything happened just as Alan and T said it would at the exact time they said I should feel this way – I did. I laid there on the tiny operating table that I was way wider than with my arms extended out from my side, like a cross.

Dr. S commended Alan on such a fine prep job and thanked him for everything he did. He also let the nurses know he appreciated their hard work. How fabulous. How stinking fabulous. What fine people that were helping me bring my sweet Charles Hill Hawkins IV into this world.

Another doctor came in to assist Dr. North, his name was Dr. Bush. The neonatal specialist nurse came in and I reminded her that my son was going to be born with a cleft lip and potentially a cleft palate. She was aware and prepared. They started hanging the drape in front of me and brought Chip in. They had him sit to my left and he was really quiet, almost distant. He was nervous, I could tell. Sweet hubby couldn’t get excited until he knew both his baby and I were safe. (Side note, Chip doesn’t do needles, blood, hospitals, etc.) My IV was in my left hand so he had to sit next to a needle in my hand. I’m sure he was goobed out. Alan was directly behind me constantly talking to me and asking how I felt. I asked Alan to please make sure my husband is ok, he was white as a ghost. Fast forward…Chip’s rendition of the story later on was that he was fine, but he didn’t really have anywhere to look. If he looked up there was smoke coming from behind the drape, so he looked down as a big pile of blood splattered out onto Dr. North’s shoe bootie. Then he said they were shaking my whole body at one point. Poor fella, he was lost and confused.

I was fine the whole time, I don’t remember my body being shaken, but I assume it was when they were trying to get big ol Hill out of my belly. That may have been about the time I felt them repeatedly press on my chest. It felt like the air had been knocked out of me. I had to do a few of the breathing tricks we learned in child birthing class. A few times I let Alan know I was having trouble breathing. He would magically fix it. Later I was told my blood pressure dropped and I lost a lot of blood which may have contributed that feeling. At one point I felt like I was having difficulty swallowing, but I was never scared or panicky during the whole process. I remember Dr. North saying, wow he’s a big baby! They suggested we get the camera ready. Then the next thing Dr. North said was, “Awe, this isn’t bad at all!” I had no idea what that meant, but it sounded like happy news to me! I heard the sweetest baby cry and I cried too. Dr. North held up my baby for his first picture. Funky stuff all over him, it didn’t matter, it’s the best picture ever. They took Hill and Chip behind me to my right to clean up our sweet boy and check his palate. He was good. I heard Chip say his lip wasn’t bad at all and my heart rested easy knowing my sweet boy was ok. We took a couple of pictures of our new little family. As the doctors put me back together, they sent Chip and Hill to meet his new family and friends on the way to the nursery.

They have this video monitor set up where I can see everyone’s reaction when Chip brings Hill out. That is the part I was looking forward to. I was so tired though. I was struggling to keep my eyes open. I remember praying to God to please let me stay awake so I can see everyone’s face when they see my sweet husband and son for the first time. I saw my mom standing at the door trying to be so patient waiting for them…but then I missed it all. I fell asleep. There waiting to meet Hill Hawkins was Mama Lou (my mom), Papi (my dad), Mimi (my step mom), Nana (Chip’s step mom), Papa (Chip’s dad), and our sweet friends Tasha and Fred Grantham… and I missed it.

I woke up with T back by my side; my guardian angel was there to care for me in recovery. I asked to see my baby and they were about to bring him to me to try to feed, just finishing up testing him and giving him a bath. He scored a perfect 10 on the APGAR test. The neonatal specialist came in and we talked about Hill and how his palate is perfect and it seems that his lip is merely a cosmetic issue. I asked about time lines for surgery and he said he would happily refer me to any doctor we needed. He commented about how I was the most alert mother after surgery he’d ever seen. I guess it is funny how that protection mode instinct immediately kicked in like my sole mission the rest of my life is to be there for Hill and his well being. The doctor assured me that there were no worries and my baby was perfect. I knew that before he was born, but it’s nice to hear a doctor reiterate that to you. I know God doesn’t make mistakes.

Welcome, Hill. I’ve loved you since before I even met you and that love grows more and more every day. People say, “Once you have kids you won’t remember your life before them.” I don’t feel that true. I never want to forget about all the fabulous and also the not so fabulous things I’ve experienced in my life. They have made me who I am today and I consider Hill as a positive part of this journey. I remember my life before him and I hope I don’t forget about those times, yet I wouldn’t want to live nor could I imagine living the rest of my life without him in it. You are my sunshine Charles Hill Hawkins IV, mommy loves you always and forever!

Monday, March 15, 2010


Here are the pictures from my surprise birthday party on March 6th that my sweet hubby planned.  I'm not sure how he was able to keep it from me because we are the type that buy birthday or Christmas presents and then give them to the other before the event. He's getting sneeky on me.  So are my friends!  Thanks to all of my friends that helped Chip make the party come together.  It really was surprising.....see for your self.

I walked in my house and there were a ton of people standing there.

Even Katie Lou was in on the surprise!

Still just so confused, yet happy and shocked,
but wondering where everyone's cars were.

Hello there super yum cake and party food that
my awesome friends put together!
(party food is my favorite food)

I am so glad that my husband and friends did such a sweet thing for me.  Ringing in my big 3-0 was fun even though I really dislike surprises, I will forgive you all for not being so forth coming. 
Poor Marsha was afraid to call me for a week straight for fear of spilling the beans! 
After I found out about the party a lot of weird things finally made sense.

Thirty starts a new chapter and I am ready for it to begin.  A lot of positive life changes are taking place including the addition of my sweet little Hill. Here are a couple of pictures to show you just how sweet my little booger bear is. 

After 8 weeks of fist sucking and panic when we couldn't find Ford the Frog, Hill found his thumb again.  It has been a while since he actually sucked his thumb, but last night he was going to town on that silly thing.  I think it's probably the most adorable thing I've ever seen in my life.  Well, other than him coughing.  I know, it's bad for him to have to cough, it's usually a sign of choking, but I think when he coughs it's cute...he makes that O with his little mouth and coughs so tiny. EAT HIM UP! 

Friday, March 12, 2010

I survived

I thought I would let you all know that I survived the first day back to work and turning 30, all in the same day.  I didn't even shed a tear.  I guess I am now stronger in my older age.  There was almost a breaking point when I did get a little teary eyed.  I mean, don't you wanna cry happy tears when you receive an email from your wonderful husband that says:

 Happy Birthday, Mommy!  We Love You!

Gah, that little boy gets my heart strings.
(I don't even know what heart strings are, but he gets em')

Then I have such wonderful friends / co-workers that know what a special yet hard day it was for me.  I came to my office and found these!  How thoughtful!  I love you Dawn, Gina & Glenda! You are the best!

It even has a fancy dragonfly on it!  I have been trying to figure out how it's attached to the flower and have decided it's magic. There is seemingly no other explination.

Then I had a couple of other friends / co-workers that got me a cake.  I didn't get a picture of it...I hate I didn't because it was so cute!  It had three plastic puppies sitting on it in icing that looked like grass.  Shareta, you know me too well.  Thanks, friends for making my day special.

I've had a good return to work experience.  There has been a bit of playing catch up, but not bad. It really has been a celebratory time; not only because I'm back to work where I feel so loved or because it's my birthday but also because I got a promotion!  I'm really excited and nervous all at the same time.

Maybe the birthday wish I made when I blew out my candles (at my surprise party Saturday - will post pics later) is coming true.  I can't tell you what it was though because that's bad luck and we don't want any of that!

Have a wonderful day and weekend!

Thursday, March 04, 2010

New Trend & Diaper Changing 101

Today is so beautiful that Hill and I are out on the patio blogging.

We are trying to get into more of a routine because we are both getting a little cabin fever.  He had his first round of his 2 month shots on February, 24th and he was such a big boy, only cried for like 30 seconds!  The doctor said to get him out and about so he can figure out his days and nights. He's started eating cereal at night and manages to get in a good 6 1/2 hours most every night.  Which is fabulous because as bitter sweet as it is I go back to work on Wednesday, March 10th.

I have been procrastinating on cleaning out my closet because I'm still not in my 'regular' clothes, but want to take out the clothes that are to big so I can feel a little better about my work attire and not look like the slum I felt like during my pregnancy.

In the process of procrastination, I've come up with a new trend.  Well I guess it's not a trend yet because it hasn't officially become the "to do" thing.  Hear me out.  I LOVE that we received so many casseroles and food every other night. Wow, you have NO idea how big of a blessing that has been.  I just ate some chicken enchiladas with mexican rice we've had in the frezer that my wonderful coworkers brought. 
So, my new trend works the same way as the casseroles. You send out an email to anyone interested in participation with dates and times they are available, but instead of food you organize a day and time to go walking.  I know it has been the wackiest of weather during my maternity leave, but it may work for some new mothers.  It doesn't have to be a far walk and you don't have to get out there and power walk or run marathons, but it's a good way to get fresh air and quality time with friends. 

Just throwing it out there.  I find I exercise more and stick to it when I have a partner.  Plus, if you have a different person to walk with every day or every other day then you aren't bragging to the same people over and over how your baby is the most precious prodigy, genius, special being on the plant.  Plus, if time allows, you can ask them how things are going in their life and get the scoop on the outside world of baby jail.

To make sure I still have readers out there, answer me this...
How do you change your baby in a public restroom?
I have the most adorable changing pads and am confused about keeping them sanitary. If you use the Koala Care things you pull down in public restrooms you are laying the outside of your pad on the public table top, but then if you have an 'accident' then the part you lay your baby on isn't too sanitary.  What is the best method for putting it back into the diaper bag and not 'contaminationg' other stuff when one side has touched public stuff and the other has baby stuff?
Can't wait to hear your feedback!
Miss you all!