The Hospital Stay

Snuggling with my baby boy.

 

Of all our children’s deliveries, this last one was the fastest. It’s a reason we dubbed it “violently efficient.” Those German doctors were in and out so fast. After we were introduced to our son, Martin stepped away with Nurse Charlotte to make his identification bracelet, which was simply our last name spelled out in tiny beads. By the time they were done and stepping back into the hallway, I was being wheeled out of surgery, which, based on what we captured on video, took less than 35 minutes total.

After a quick photo, I was sent to the recovery room while Martin and the baby went to another room so the baby’s measurements could be taken, and Martin could fill out the birth certificate paperwork. I was given additional pain medication through my IV, and I did my best to relax. It felt good to rest, especially since I hadn’t gotten any sleep the night before.

Eventually, Martin arrived with the baby, and promptly showed me the paperwork which revealed our son’s name.  Continue reading

The Arrival

One last photo as a family of five. Plus Kiwi the Cat.

 

Last Monday morning moved along like any other. One by one, the kids got up, got dressed, ate breakfast, and left the house to catch the bus for school, giving us hugs and kisses before they said good-bye as if it were like any other day.

But of course, it wasn’t like any other ordinary day because we were scheduled to deliver our fourth child just a few hours later.

And that’s definitely not ordinary.

Continue reading

This is 36

So this is me now. This is 36.

Once again, I was spoiled in celebration of my birth, although everything was much more subdued compared to last year’s “Best Weekend Ever.”

When I woke up, the kids brought me breakfast in bed. Miss C and our nanny Wynter lovingly prepared a diabetic-friendly breakfast tray of eggs and toast, beautifully granished with flowers from our garden. There was a birthday card, too, full of messages from everyone in our house. Continue reading

Birthday Boy

It’s Martin’s birthday!!!!

I took him to dinner to a restaurant that overlooks Stuttgart and the Schlossplatz. We got the tasting menu, which included a Thai coconut soup that rocked our world.

He’s like fine wine, yes?!?

Happy Birthday Day, Jill

It’s raining like crazy over here in Germany this morning, reminding me of this photo from when we were kids. Somehow, we survived our ’80s childhood and are now both moms in our 30s … only she’s a legit crimefighter and badass who has dedicated her life to serving and protecting others. I’m so proud of her.

Best Day Ever for Jaz

We have a 5-year-old in the house!!! That means today is the BEST DAY EVER.

BEST DAY EVER is a birthday tradition in our family. It was first celebrated on Miss C’s fifth birthday. Though we had a birthday party planned for her friends for the weekend, her actual birth date fell in the middle of the week. For some reason, that didn’t sit well with me.

After all, it was her FIFTH birthday.

In kid-speak, that’s a whole hand. Continue reading

The Teenager


She’s a teen now.

Not a preteen. Not a tween.

But a teenager.

I feel like I should say that Martin and I are completely knocked over by this, but the truth is, we were a lot more emotional when she turned ten. Weepy — a little — when she turned five, but ten really did it to us. Something about the double digits, the necessity of both hands to display her age, the idea that an entire decade passed since she was born.

It seemed inconceivable.

But 13? Nah. We’ve known this was coming. Continue reading

35 Things I Loved About Turning 35 [In No Particular Order]

Just a warning: this post is all about me.

We celebrated my 35th birthday over the weekend. In our family, we like to have “Best Day Ever” celebrations every five years for the kids. While the whole family is involved, it’s a day when the birthday kid gets to have all their favorites from sunrise to sundown (and usually a little longer).

Since Martin and I never actually had such a day ourselves, and because I’m the Mom, and because, well, I’m not getting any younger … I told Martin I wanted a whole weekend of my favorite things. And then I took two days off of work so it would be an extended weekend.

I have to give it to him: Martin and the kids absolutely delivered. Continue reading

TBT: My Birth Day

Today’s #TBT photos were taken exactly 35 years ago today, just moments after I was born in Abilene, Texas. My mother Tawana was still in surgery, having developed preeclampsia (now known as HELLP Syndrome) that nearly killed the two of us. Continue reading

Birthday Girl

Happy Birthday to my sweet girl!!! We will party this weekend, but we got out some candles, stuck ’em in a huge frosted donut, and sang our hearts out for her right after her gymnastics practice this evening.

She’s a busy girl these days: she’s learning how to play the violin, participates in a marathon club, and has become a voracious reader, too. Continue reading