Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Baby Bump Update -- 34 Weeks

We're in the homestretch....and I've got proof! Look at my gi-normous bump.

At 34 weeks, my baby is supposed to be the size of a pineapple, but I would say it resembles more of a bowling ball, wouldn't you? The good news is that I'm not big anywhere else (at least that's what Patrick says every time I ask him if my butt looks big). If you know Patrick, he can not tell a lie. So, what he would say is, "Baby, those pants look really nice." And he hasn't had to resort to that. :)

I delivered both kids at 38 weeks so I'm hoping that baby #3 will be all cooked by then and ready to come out to meet us in 4 weeks. I'm praying for a healthy little baby boy, and an easy delivery with plenty of love from my epidural. I am actually having a doula -in-training in the delivery room this time, as she needs to observe live births for her class. It's a friend's niece, so while I told her it probably won't be a very Hollywood-crazy delivery, if it'll help with her training, I don't mind.

I'm looking forward to meeting son #3. Since the house drama, I haven't had a chance to focus on the baby. Some of that is good because.... well, I'm uncomfortable a lot and welcome the distraction. But I do want to just prepare myself in these last weeks, nest a little, get things ready, and also spend time thanking God for His undeserved favor in my life. This baby came to us without any procedures and we feel so blessed by this natural gift.

Little boy Ring is still nameless however, and Patrick and I as usual, have not been able to come up with a name until the last month. Well, the last month is here so we've pondered names such as Jacob, Nathan, Nicolas, Daniel, Rowan, Lucas and Derek, but none have seemed to resonate well with both of us. I am confident it will come, as it did with Micah and Caelan. We both want a strong name, unique, and also matches with our other boy's name. I'd have no trouble finding a girl name, I'll tell you that much. :)

One thing we do know is that this baby will need to be pretty laid back because we're not sure where we're bringing him home to. Home will be in mommy's arms or in a manger with straw for the first few months. He won't know the difference, so we're not going to care either....keep repeating that, Soryda. Still wandering the desert asking God for the house. A pretty difficult journey of faith for me, admittedly, but I'm seeing all the work God still has yet to do in my worldly heart. More updates soon on that.

Monday, March 21, 2011

The Great Adventure

So, it begins. Moving day---done! Closing---done! Family moved into Seyla and Halys's home---done! We've been here one week now and it's been GREAT. We have the entire basement to ourselves with Patrick and I in the guestroom and the kids sleeping in the family room area. We have a really nice bathroom, too.

Micah is turned sideways in their new beds. Oops!

The kids are sleeping through the night. Praise God. We took both their mattresses and laid them side by side. Surprisingly, Patrick and I are sleeping really well in the full guest bed. Who would have thunk? I think it's because we're both extremely tired, and I'm like a beached whale at night, I can't move too much so I don't need that much space. :)

Caelan and Lily are inseparable.

In the morning, the kids wake up and run upstairs immediately to play with their cousins. Patrick and I actually sleep in quite a bit. When we go up, we find our kids have already been fed breakfast and they are just playing together nicely. You know, there is something to communal living. Meanwhile, Halys and I take turns making dinner and we also take turns running out to get our hair done or pick up something from Target WITHOUT kids while the other stays. It's fabulous.

Not sure if Caelan is disgruntled that Gabriel took
his scooter, or if mommy put him in the exact same shirt.

Micah hasn't once asked about the Millwright Terrace house, and neither has Caelan. It's pretty strange. As far as adjustment, they have lost their minds a few times over some things that are ridiculous, but I also attribute it to not having the same sound nap schedule they had in their own beds. By about 5 p.m., the naughty behavior starts and I find myself having to take extra disciplinary action. But I do have to give them some grace as it's a new environment and whether or not I can tell, they did go through a major life change.

The introduction of the i-pad to my kids.

I'm probably taking it worse than anyone. We still haven't found a house we liked and perhaps for the first time, I'm starting to feel really discouraged. I probably just need a little break from house hunting and spend more time focused on other things. I also need to let go of the fact that I probably won't have a house before the baby arrives. The nice thing is we have plenty of places to live and we'll just continue on with our Great Adventure until the Lord decides it's time. I am asking God for more faith and more joy as I wrestle with my impatience and my frustrations. He is good no matter how I feel, and He's giving me what I need each day. Praise Him!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

We are free birds!

Today at 9:47 a.m., we became financially free for the first time in our adult lives. It was fun to see how much money would be wired to our account and it tempted us to leave the country and vacation in Italy oh for um...indefinitely. The close went smooth. No issues.

The move yesterday was NOT so Non-Stop. We had three guys and a truck at $75 per hour. Same formula as last time: Underestimated amount of stuff and one guy among the three who was smaller than me. We also had an elevator problem at the free storage site, so while Patrick was there with the guys, he ended up buying public storage one mile away for at least a month. Which that was a God-send because they had only one 10x15 drive-up-to-the-door unit left-- but it cost us another hour of figuring out game plan B and shifting gears. All in all what was an estimated 4 hours, took 7. It could have been worse.

Meanwhile, back at the house - I am cleaning up 4200 square feet of space while I'm almost 8 months along. Who thought of this plan again??? The good news is that it's over, we are free birds and we are rich, man!!! As I left our house for the last time, I did cry. I did. But it was a tinge of sadness mixed mostly with joy and gratitude. My heart filled up with gratefulness that I fell on my knees thanking God for an opportunity to live in my dream house, even for a short time. And even if I never get to live in a house like this again, I had the chance and it was more than I could have asked for.

Now the great adventure goes on! To add to our ups and downs, we put an offer on a townhouse fixer upper for dirt cheap and we found out there were 7 other offers, and so we didn't even stand a chance. It was going to be work, which I was SO EXCITED about, but this house had a lot of cat and dog funk in it. Poor Jessel--- who's allergic, came to see it since she lived down the street and she had to put a cloth over her nose-- that's how bad it was.

I stayed awake that night thinking of how I'd redesign it from top to bottom and it was going to be spectacular. Oh well. it's alright, I wasn't devastated this time, even though now we are 0-2. It wasn't God's house for us. I'm not sure why, but He does and that's what we have to go on.

Keep up to the date with the captains log - house updates. Soon, and I do pray soon -- we will be able to tell you that we got the house. I can not wait to share the good news with you!

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Captains Log: House Update

Well, our purchaser's financing came in, and our house appraised at what they offered us--$10,000 over our asking price. We were nervous since the comparables were short sales in our neighborhood---which is why we had the buyers remove their appraisal contingency, but it turns out it wasn't necessary -- our God continues to come through for us. Note: When we moved in 19 months ago, the house didn't appraise. It was $13,000 less than what we offered. It's hard to believe in less than two years in this market, it has appreciated $31,000. It's amazing what happens when you're reliant and desperate for Him to work it out.

So, this week, we packed like crazy -- correction, my beloved friends packed. They had mercy on a 7-month prego and came in on a daily basis to help me pack. Thanks to Natalie, Jessel, Michelle G, Jen and her parents Judi & Don, Michelle S, Halys and my mom who came this week and did the lower level, storage room, entire kitchen, office, and dining room buffet hutch. Wow! Next week, we have Christi, Amy C., and a few others who are coming by to finish it up. Praise God for amazing, generous, loving friends who would take the shirt off their backs and give to us. This is community and this is family.

We are here for one more week and our moving day will be Monday the 14th, a week from tomorrow. Our stuff will go to temporary storage. Our first stop of our great adventure is Seyla and Halys's home, where we plan to stay two weeks. The kids are counting down their "7 sleeps" until they get to play all day with their cousins. From there, we have plenty of homes to lay down our heads until we have permanent housing.

Patrick and I have been house-hunting every weekend but still have not found anything we love. We were very tempted by a beautiful townhouse end unit in Ashburn at the top of our price range, with lake views on every level. It was gorgeous! Gourmet kitchens and updated bathrooms. We just had to wrestle with God's direction for us. That was hard. We ultimately passed it up.

At 30 weeks, the baby is kicking like crazy. I'm itching a lot. The boys are watching their toys get sold, and saying "Goodbye slide, Goodbye motorcycle...", but they are doing it with great grace. We had a moving sale this week and already I've made $2,760 on our stuff! God is good. The buyers are taking our living room furniture since we're downsizing, this works for everyone. And I've had a stream of craigslisters come in and just take stuff out of our house. I can tell you that I am a changed woman and I no longer feel a great attachment to my "stuff". It's surprising you and I both, believe me!

What else? Well, I am surprised that this move has been relatively stress-free (except for the daily waiting on the right property to hit the market) but everything else has been fairly smooth and amazingly calm as things have just fallen into place. I do sense the Lord is definitely asking me to place my full trust and using this house search to build my faith in the One who is capable of providing all my wants and need on His timing and not mine. Hebrews chapter 11 says that "Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see." It's a time of testing and trial for me, and I hope that I prove faithful.