Sunday, August 19, 2012

Daddy's Week of "Vacation"

Have I ever mentioned that I have the best hubby in the world? Jacin took a week of vacation to be at home this past week. It was WONDERFUL to have him home to just be with us and to help out (but I know he needs a week back to work to recover from this so-called vacation!).

Daddy time consisted of...

Lots of cuddle time!
Jacin got up at 6am each morning this week to feed Levi, and then took both boys to cuddle on the couch so I could sleep in a bit.

A trip to the playground!
 Daddy took us to the playground one morning, and he and Bird tried every slide there while I walked with Levi in the stroller.

Lunch Out!
Great Gran had given us a little splurge money, so we went to a new spot to grab lunch - Calhoun Hot Dog House! Bird, of course, was in heaven!

Jacin & Bird played for hours! One day Bird wanted to wear the colander as a football helmet. Daddy rigged up a strap to help it stay on.

In addition to all of that, helping potty train Bird was Daddy's #1 priority this week, and it's been a lot of work. The first few days, Bird did beautifully. As the week has progressed, Bird has lost interest and doesn't like stopping in the middle of play to potty. The accidents have increased and the attitude has gone downhill. I've spent lots of time praying for us and for Bird and claiming Jeremiah 32:17 - "Lord, you created the heavens and earth by your power and outstretched arm. Nothing is too hard for you!" We're relying on the Lord and hoping persistence will pay off.

Jacin -
You are the best Daddy and Husband in the world. I so appreciate you taking a week off of work to work here at home. I know it hasn't been much of a vacation for you, but I have loved having you home with us. You are so patient with our boys and so thoughtful towards me. All the time and energy you spent taking care of things this week to give me a break... my love tank is FULL to overflowing! Thanks, Babe. I love you lots and lots!

Friday, August 17, 2012

Girls' Night Out

Tuesday night, Jacin was sweet enough to watch the boys while I went out with 3 friends from college. We had such a great time just catching up on the goings-on from each of our lives. Katie Owens (KTED) is busy with work and 3 kids, Emily just moved back to the states to earn her teaching degree at Grad School in Virginia, and my best friend Nicole (Roommate!) has a new beau in her life. It was GREAT to have a few hours to talk and laugh with these ladies.

Thank you Lord for those rare friendships that endure separation of time & place and seem to just pick up where they left off. Precious!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Sharing the Throne

Last Christmas Jacin gave me an awesome new digital camera. I practiced with it some over the summer, and now I'm getting the hang of it. Here's one I took of Levi, 11 days old.

And here are some pics of the brothers. :)

Every morning Bird gets up and asks, "What's Levi donin?" (In the beginning he called him "Elvi," but he now can say "Levi" correctly.) When he finds Levi, he kisses him on the head and declares, "Tat's my brother!"  And he loves to hold him, too.

Overall, Jackson is great with Levi. It's just been challenging for Bird to adjust to sharing his throne. Every day it gets a bit better, but it's been a process. Bird is still really pushing the behavior boundaries, and it's pretty exhausting to parent him right now. In short, he's got a bit of an attitude, and Jacin and I are having to remind him often that we are in charge. For example, one of his favorite things to say to us right now is "No, Mamma. Not tell me no! Be quiet!" And yesterday when I spanked him, he brushed off his hand (the site of the spanking) and growled "Ahhh! I brush off that spankin. Not hurt me, Mamma! No spankins!" And he likes to talk on the phone, so if I redirect him or give him instructions while he's on the phone, he tells me, "Hush! Not tawk to me! I'm tawkin right now!"
Talking on the phone with his work boots on.

To be honest, Bird's not the only one adjusting. I have wild mood swings, vacillating between feelings of happiness and gratitude and then feelings of utter despair. One minute I feel totally beyond blessed to have two beautiful happy and healthy boys. The next minute I feel guilty for bursting Bird's perfect little bubble by bringing Levi into the picture, wondering if my relationship with him will ever be the same. It's been very hard for me to deal with Bird's constant "pushing" because I feel like all I do is correct him all day. He hasn't wanted to cuddle with me at all, and he's actually told me several times lately, "I not want you, Mamma." But Jacin has been off work and home with us all week, so that's been a HUGE help. Bird even wanted me to put him to bed tonight, which hasn't happened since Levi arrived. Like I said, it's a process, and I know that this too shall pass. After all, it's not just 2-year-olds who have trouble sharing the throne. As I used to say myself, "I don't much care to share."

Welcome Visitors

After Levi's arrival, we stayed in the hospital for a few days and finally came home on Sunday, July 29th. Later that day, Zack, Audrey, Tinsley, Great Gran & Quincy and Meme arrived to visit and fix dinner. We had a great time being together, and Z & A made some great spaghetti! Thanks for making the trip up to see us, guys!
Great Gran with her 3 grandkids!

After everyone had left to go back to Gwinnett, Meme stayed and spent a whole week with us! Words just can't express how much we loved having her here. She got up during the night each night to help me with feedings, she sat up during the night with Levi when he wouldn't sleep, and she juggled BOTH boys each morning while I was stuck on the couch feeling lousy. We are so blessed to have her!
Meme's grandboys!

Levi hanging playing tools with Meme & Jackson.

Meme left to go back to Gwinnett on Friday evening. On Saturday, the lawn looked like a jungle and needed some MAJOR attention. Granny & Pawpaw took the boys so Jacin could mow the yard and I could take a nap. Once again, we're saved by family! I was incredibly thankful to be able to take that 3 hour nap.

Have you caught onto the theme yet? We are SO THANKFUL for all the support our families have given and continue to give. We couldn't do it without them!

Welcome Levi Aiken!

It's official. I am now a big fan of the modern day Cesarean-Section. With Jackson, I had a C-Section, but only after being induced and unsuccessfully pushing for several hours. With Levi, we just skipped the hard part and scheduled a C-Section. I showed up at Floyd Medical Center at 7:30am Thursday morning, July 26th, went into surgery 30 minutes earlier than planned (when does THAT ever happen?!), and 63 minutes later we welcomed Levi Aiken Burns!

Now I won't lie - I do NOT enjoy the whole surgery scene. The anesthesia (an epidural with Bird and a spinal block with Levi) makes me feel like I'm going to pass out, the pain in considerable after surgery, and the recovery takes a while. BUT it sure is nice to schedule the arrival of your baby. It takes all the guess-work out! And Levi arrived with much less head trama than poor Jackson, which is a BIG plus!

So here is the little ChubAChub... Levi Aiken! Born at 10:03 on July 26th, weighing in at 8 pounds, 9 ounces and measuring 20 inches. Within the first 2 hours of his first breath, he downed a 2-ounce bottle, and he hasn't stopped eating since!

Just to be on the safe side, Jacin, Levi, and I stayed in the hospital for several days. While there, Jackson had a great time hanging out with Meme & Rayray, "Uncle Laney" and Granny & Pawpaw.

We finally came home from Floyd on Sunday, July 29th. I must say that the sleep I got while in the hospital was the BEST sleep I had gotten in 9 months. I'm thankful I had that time to recover. And Jacin seemed to enjoy the down-time, too.

Welcome little Levi! We love you and are blessed to be your parents!