Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Prayer requests updates

I haven't updated the prayer requests in a while. Baby Bennett was able to go home with his parents about a month or so ago and is doing very well. Thank you for your prayers for him. Last week, our brother Mike Matheny went to his eternal home. Please continue to pray for his wife, Sharon, and his sons, Markus and Thomas, as they grieve their loss of husband and dad. It is a celebration for him, but nonetheless difficult for those left to grieve, especially this time of year.

I'm adding my father-in-law, Gerald Smalling, because he had the first of 4 chemo treatments today (Tue). His doctors are just doing this as a precaution, and so far he has not felt too bad, but we appreciate the prayers anyway.

I'm also adding Aunt Mildred (Shirley's oldest living sister), who has been back and forth to Louisville seeing oncologists, but still has no answers as to what is wrong with her. They initially told her she had cancer in 3 or 4 organs of her body, but further tests cannot find it. Anyway, she has symptoms that haven't been explained, so although their inability to find the cancer is good news, it doesn't make sense based on other tests and symptoms. She just feels like they must be missing something huge and that any day now, the other shoe will drop. Thank you for your prayers for all of these loved ones. I know each of you has many, many other things or people on your mind, so I appreciate you taking the time to read and pray.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Ruby link

My mom published her poem to her glory-grandbaby Ruby on her blog. Just wanted to share the link because it's a very precious post. I have also been thinking about her a lot...well, I always do, but a little differently I guess since being pregnant again. I still love and treasure the verse at the top of the blog. It means even more now as I realize how perfect God's timing is. I found/He showed that verse BEFORE Blueberry came along, BEFORE we'd even "decided" to "try" for another baby. And I am so thankful that He gave me that peace and joy in HIM ALONE, and not just because I was pregnant again. That peace was a lot of the reason we decided we could take another chance and know we'd be okay. Anyway, I didn't mean to ramble, but I'm just so touched by Mom's message and her honesty and encouragement. I'm so thankful for her! And for each of you.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Birthdays Past--Jack edition

I enjoyed looking back at Halloween pictures so much that I decided to do Birthdays. So, since Jack had the most recent birthday, I thought I'd start with him. And looking back kind of made me wish I'd thought ahead and taken similar pictures each year, like some thoughtful and creative moms I know! Or had yearly portraits done like most moms I know. Oh well, maybe I'll get things together by the time my grandkids come along! Probably not :-)

We welcomed #3 into the world on October 30, 2004, at 12:10 pm. I don't think he was actually named yet at the time this picture was taken!

Oct 2005, 1 year old: This is one of my all-time favorite pictures of him. He has always loved the outdoors!

Oct 2006, 2 years old: He was all about Veggie Tales for most of his 2nd year. This ginormous Larry Boy is still in his bed!

Oct 2007, 3 years old: What a handsome little man! You'd never guess how much trouble he is...or can you see the mischief in his eyes?? We love our Wacky Jack!

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Mark your calendars--June 1, 2008

Yep, there's another Smalling on the way! Just what the world needs, huh?! Seriously, we are very excited. The ultrasound showed ONE healthy little heartbeat. (**Thank you to my friends who obviously have some brain cells left for pointing out that the circle is probably the yolk sac, which feeds the baby before the placenta is fully developed**) The kids are calling him/her "Blueberry"--a few weeks ago they asked how big the baby was and according to "the book" it was "blueberry-sized". Maddy thought about changing the name weekly based on size, but "grape" and "small lemon" were just not as cute as "blueberry", so Blueberry has stuck. It's cute and gender-neutral. Of course we are praying for a healthy, full-term baby, but Maddy and Noah are each praying for a baby of their own gender. Especially Maddy, since for a while she's going to be sharing a room with Blueberry either way :)

I'm now about 11 wks and starting to feel better some days. I've been alternating between feeling tired, almost nauseated, "eh", and full-out yuck. None of it as sick as I was last time with Ruby (which was sicker than I was with any of the others), but not well enough to get much done around here, ie. paying much attention to my poor children, cooking, or blogging! Hopefully I'm getting back to real life now...

Friday, November 9, 2007

Halloweens Past

2000: Dani made Maddy's adorable first halloween costume. We added the pink bow so people would know she was a girl lion!

2001: This is a clown costume that Dani (then just Mom) made for me for Halloween. I think my brothers may have worn it too (at least David). I think we replaced the poms and added the hair ribbons because we like our bows!
Here's a closeup, including the cute collar...this is one of my all-time favorite pictures of little Madeline. No wonder she's "Dani's precious angel"!

2002: Noah's first Halloween and he got to wear the adorable lion costume from Dani. Maddy had a couple of different costumes this Halloween, but ultimately chose the witch (although she had no idea what that was) because it was pink, of course.

2003: Bea.uty and the Pumpkin (with Aunt Maggie and Uncle David) Mommy made Maddy's dress, my first real sewing feat. Actually, it was HUGE on her (she wore it for 2 years after this), the seams were uneven (it had like 10 gores in the skirt--WHY did I even attempt this??!!), and the hem kept falling out. But Maddy loved it, so that made it worth it!

2004: Our Ja.ck-o-la.ntern arrived! We were in the hospital on Halloween, but I think Uncle David and Maggie took Maddy and Noah trick-or-treating for us. Here's Jack dressed as a pacifier holder...And Maddy & Noah enjoying their D.ora and B.ob the B.uilder bags from their baby brother!

2005: Not a banner Halloween for the Smallings. We tried to go Trunk-or-Treating at church, but somehow everyone was mad at the same time. Madeline opted for Ti.nke.rbell, the itchiest costume of all of her princess dress-up clothes. And although I gave in to the sparkly face paint and spent FOREVER getting her hair Ti.nk-perfect (in her mind), the itchy costume was just too much. And the mommy-solution of wearing a white long-sleeved tshirt underneath was not well-received. It was also unusually FREEZING and I required her to wear tights and a sweater. She was not pleased. Anyway, she was convinced she was the worst Ti.nke.rbell ever and she would never dress up for Halloween again! So there! Hmph. Noah had an array of dress-up costumes which he turned down in favor of this Ti.gger "costume". It was a $6.99 sweatsuit from W-M! But at least he was happy about it. Jack was just tired (he'd only slept 16 of his usual 19 hours in that 24 hour period!) but was still a cute hand-me-down lion!

2006: Finally, a Happy Halloween! Everyone made up their mind early on and stuck with their costume, so it was a good Trunk-or-Treat for all. On Halloween night, we went to a party at a neighbor's house (from church) and the kids trick-or-treated in that neighborhood, so they got double treats! By the way, Madeline is Cind.erella, Jack is Mic.key Mo.use, and Noah is Ba.tman.

Happy Halloween! Arrrr!

This year we didn't trick-or-treat in any neighborhoods, just at Trunk-or-Treat at our church. They had hot dogs and chili going on too and then afterwards we actually had classes. I felt a little guilty sending my sugar-doped costumed kids to their classes, but I didn't have a choice. They survived, but it was a crazy night. Jack refused to take a nap that day even though he seriously needed one. Long story short (sort of), he disobeyed (which we could just call "Jacked") his way to not getting to go trunk or treat. Before you feel too sorry for him, he did get to dress up and come eat and go to class, and he'd gotten a sackful of more treats than one kid could eat from mother's day out. Trust me, he was fine. He got to stay home with Daddy by himself, which I think he would have actually chosen over trick-or-treating if given the choice! He told us the next day he had fun trick-or-treating, so I'm not sure he missed anything. So much for discipline, but at least it kept us from having to chase down an extremely tired and cranky boy during the mass chaos that IS Trunk-or Treat. All of that was to explain why I have pictures of 2 of the 3 pirates posing, and just one quick snapshot of the 3rd eating. He looked like Noah, minus 2 inches in height and the painted on beard!
Good little pirates!

Super scary pirates!

Our Jack-o-lantern is THREE!!

Jack Everett is three! I told my parents recently that I was really hoping the "terrible twos" would miraculously turn into the "terrific threes" on October 30, 2007. But, it did not happen! We're stuck in the terribles! He had a good birthday, though. Round One was at Memaw & Grandaddy's on the 20th. He got some Veg.gie Ta.les' Pir.ates toys and books which he loves! I don't have pictures, but hopefully when I get a copy of Memaw's I can post some.
Round Two was supposed to be a party with friends the Pirate Party Ship (aka our deck), but due to Mommy feeling bad (and not sending out invitations!), the Second (and final) Round ended up being a small party with the Pas.chals and Fol.kers at my parents' house in BG. We had chili and hot dogs and a big cookie cake. The 2 Jacks were there--aka "Jack squared", which was about as much as one house can take! Truthfully, big Jack (who's actually medium Jack because the dads have a friend named Jack who is the original Big Jack) Fol.ker was very well behaved, so only little Jack lived up to his name. Their whole family jokes with us that we should have known better than to name a kid Jack!! We love our Jacks!!

I think this was the first birthday where Jack actually "got" the whole birthday, presents, "YOU sing Happy Birthday to ME" thing...

Jack got an Optimus Prime robot, some cars and Power Ranger toys, an RC Geotrax train...and all those were things he loves, but COULD NOT compete with the Doodle Pirate that Maddy and Noah picked out for him!! They were very excited that he loved it so much.