Monday, December 29, 2014

Christmas card 2014

Hello, friends and family!  Slip on your favorite footed pajamas, grab a mug of hot cocoa, cozy up by the fire, and read a little update on the Edwards family…
Before the dust had settled on Christmas 2013, we found out we were expecting another baby!  Before that news truly sunk in, the morning sickness began.  When I was pregnant with Carter I’d been sick, so I figured I knew how to handle it.  I was wrong.  The terrible nausea went on and on, and lasted from early in the morning until late at night.  I worked hard at using my tone of voice alone to discipline Carter so I could ‘parent’ from a reclined position on the couch.  I tried several different anti-nausea medications.  I chewed ginger gum at work and put aromatherapy oil inside my dental masks to block out any smells that might send me running to the restroom.  Because of all this trouble, we thought of naming the baby Ralph, whether it was a boy or girl, but we figured we shouldn’t curse the child for a lifetime over a few months of trouble.

This time around we were able to find out the gender of our baby even earlier than before through the magic of technology.  A new blood test allowed us to learn in the first trimester that we were expecting a boy—oh, boy!  Mommy is getting badly outnumbered at this house…I may never again find the toilet seat left down with all these boys running around.  

In March our marriage turned 6 years old and we turned 28 years old.  At 28 years old, having been married for a while, and having 1.5 kids made us feel pretty old so we decided to live it up and take an anniversary trip to Dallas one weekend in April.  I believe we were asleep by 8:30 pm each night, solidifying the fact that we are not only old but also no longer cool.
April showers are supposed to bring May flowers, but April had some other surprises in store for us.  The first was a literal April shower, or torrential downpour with hail included, that resulted in demolished roofs neighborhood-wide.  After umpteen phone calls, paying a hefty deductible, and choosing a new shingle color (who knew there were about 40 choices of those) we solidified a date on which our roof would be replaced.  Imagine my surprise when ‘up on the housetop’ reindeer pawsworkmen’s boots woke me on a different date than the one we had scheduled.  Carter, our dog, baby in utero, and I made a hasty exit while shingles and nails rained down on us.  We spent the day as nomads in Temple, wandering around from place toplace while our roof was unexpectedly redone.

It was also in April that Jeffrey became aware of a job opportunity in Abilene, TX.  One of the hospitals there is building a brand new clinic and needs an Internist beginning in the summer of 2015.  After much consideration and prayer, he decided to sign with Hendrick Hospital in Abilene, so we will be heading to Abilene permanently once his residency is completed.  I will be working with my Uncle Gary at his dental office, fulfilling a dream that we both wished for since I started dental school in 2008.  Gary’s office just so happens to be next door to Jeffrey’s clinic, too.  Just imagine—you could have a tooth pulled and your diabetes diagnosed in one convenient stop!
Sometime in May I finally stopped feeling so sick from the pregnancy and began to eat again.  
Determined to make sure that baby boy came out chubby and cute, I dutifully ate Blue Bell every night to make up for the lean months early on.  (I highly recommend this diet plan—it’s delicious.)

In June we spent some time with family, going on a family vacation with my folks at a rented lake house in Austin for a long weekend and spending a few days with Jeffrey’s family in Fort Worth.  The times when were all together are some of myfavorite memories from the year, and some of the most restful since there are so many extra eyes and hands to keep track of Carter.
July marked the beginning of Jeffrey’s third and final year of residency.  He started it with a bang, working an entire month in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU).  The other residents’ wives and I have a running joke that ICU month should actually be called ‘I-don’t-CU’…because when those guys are working that rotation, they basically live at the hospital.  My thoughtful husband had planned to get that rotation finished early in the year so that once our newest little boy was born he would be able to be here to help.  
As it turned out, our little Harrison Jeffrey came 2 weeks early, on August 27th, weighing in at 6 pounds, 15 ounces.  He came out kicking and screaming, and pretty much has continued that trend.  He’s been officially diagnosed with a case of colic (intractable crying) which has led to some moments of frustration for our family, but little by little he has improved and we are getting to know the happy side of him more each day.  Though a little on the small side at birth, he now weighs in at a hefty 15 pounds and has the most kissable chubby cheeks I’ve ever seen.  I promise I don’t have him on the Blue Bell diet…I make no such promises about myself.

In September our Carter boy turned 2! We celebrated by throwing him a little party at the house—construction equipment was the theme because he never tires of pointing out the excavators, dump trucks, and front loaders at the many construction sites around town.  (And yes, he does call them by name.)  His two’s, so far, have been much more terrific than terrible, with him talking more and more and learning every day.  He loves reading, coloring, and being a helper.  He has been exceptionally sweet to his little brother and is almost always gentle with him.  We’re very proud that at only 2 years old he can already recite ‘his’ Bible verse (Joshua 1:9) that his daddy picked out for him when he was born.
For Halloween this year I asked Carter what he wanted to be and he said, “Baa, black sheep.”  Concerned about my abilities to create such a costume, I asked him again on another day and that time he told me that he wanted to be a fireman.  I happily seized on that idea, buying him a fireman costume and making a littleDalmatian costume for baby Harrison.  On the day of Halloween, Carter refused to wear his costume, but he did wear it once to Sunday morning church and twice to daycare, so I guess we got our money out of that one.  Harrison had a diaper explosion in his costume, so that Dalmatian ended up with a few extra spots!
As I write this letter, Thanksgiving is approaching and I have so much gratitude in my heart for all the wonderful blessings in my life.  I’m so thankful for my husband, my boys, newopportunities, old friends, warm pajamas, and of course, Blue Bell.  It truly is the most onesie-ful time of the year.  Best wishes to you and yours.
The Edwards

Saturday, December 27, 2014

4 Months

Well, little buddy, I would say that you're getting so big…but I think I've said that before.  At four months old you're tipping the scales at a whopping 16 pounds--that's somewhere in the 80th percentile. This Christmas when you went to sit on Santa's lap, Santa remarked, "He looks like a middle linebacker!"  (And he's right.)  We have lots of nicknames for you, including H-man, Chunkers, Cheeks, and Tubby.  We mean them all in the nicest way possible, of course!

This month you've gotten so very good at smiling.  You give us smiles for looking at you, sticking our tongues out at you, and singing to you.  You dole out screams if we leave a wet diaper on you one second longer than you would prefer, and if you have to wait one minute longer to eat than you would prefer.  No surprise there, right?

You're only 4 months old, but I feel like you're already trying to talk.  You have such an expressive little face with eyebrows that furrow as you 'talk' to me very seriously.  You've made friends with some toys this month, and you talk to them, too.  Every day you become more aware of the toys and noises and general craziness around you at our house.

Soon we'll have to start letting you sleep in your own room.  I'm not sure how we're going to do that since you still like to sleep in your little bassinet next to my bed while holding my hand, but somehow we will find a way.

You're just a big, cuddly darling, Harrison, and your smile still lights up my world.

Happy 27th, baby.