Friday, March 30, 2007

Slinging Around

We have been very much on the go ever since Levi's birth. There has been no slowing down here even though it would be a nice change. Levi has been living in one of the two slings we have pretty much since he was born. The slings have become a normal part of every day life for the boys so much so that Caleb wanted to carry Levi around the house in it. I wasn't quite ready for Caleb to do that so he decided Josiah would do just fine. Josiah thought it was great being carried around in the sling by big brother. Just wanted to share this priceless picture.

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Busy, Busy, Busy!

Did I really just have a baby less than three weeks ago? Life seems to have been a whirlwind since we put my Mom on an airplane only last Monday. I thought I'd give an update on each of the boys while I had a few minutes of quiet.

Caleb has turned into a boy sometime this year. Gone is that little boy look and in it's place is all boy. I think losing two baby teeth has a little something to do with it. He still is loving baseball. Today the coach finished with practice but said he'd stay longer if any of the boys wanted to practice some more. Guess who wanted to stay longer? You guessed it. Caleb's hair is getting long. He has no desire to get it cut, but I think I'm going to set up a hair appointment for him anyway. At least maybe we can tame it some. He's blessed with thick hair like me. He loves dressing up for church even though we go on Sunday evenings most of the time and it's pretty casual. I told him I had to have a picture tonight of him dressed looking so nice. I think I should have bought the longer tie. Oh well. When talking about my babies, I refer to him as the baby I always wanted and dreamed of. He'll be seven in a month. Where has the time gone?

Hurray! We finally were able to get a decent picture of Josiah tonight after church! He seems to have grown up in a flash. I'm sure a lot of it has to do with having a newborn in our house. He continues to improve on sleeping better at night. I am so proud of him! I still go to him every time he wakes up but it's getting less and less with each passing week. I cherish our snuggle times at naps and bedtime since I know pretty soon he'll be wanting to snuggle with Daddy like his big brother. Tonight he went to Bible Study alone for the first time. I have been teaching his class which I have loved, but stepped down due to having Levi. I asked him if he wanted to go to class and explained that Mommy wouldn't be coming and he said, "Alright." I had a pager and left my cell phone number in case the pager didn't work with instructions to page me if he started crying. He did great! I know the ladies in there and they are great ladies that I trust will be honest and get me if he needs me. He said he had fun and wants to go again next week. He continues to be wonderful with Levi. He loves giving Levi kisses and has shown no signs of jealousy. He has transitioned so well. I know I repeatedly say that I could not have asked for a smoother transition, but it's the truth. When talking about my babies, I refer to him as our blessing since he wasn't necessarily expected, but he was all in God's timing.

Oh my sweet, sweet Levi! Levi will probably spend a lot of his first year of life in this sling as we make trips to the grocery store and Target, walk around church, and try and keep up with two older brothers. He is such a wonderful baby. He rarely cries unless he's hungry or needs some snuggle time. He loves being held and is such a snuggler. He snuggles perfectly on my chest or right next to me or any other way I position him on my lap. I can hardly wait to see his personality develop. What will he be like a year from now? We'll find out way too soon. When talking about my babies, I refer to him as our bonus baby. He definitely took us by surprise, but what a great surprise he was.

This is one of the outfits on loan from my sister. There is a great benefit in having 5 boys in the family -- we pass clothes around. I love this little outfit which was given to RyAnn from a friend of hers. Just wanted to include a picture of him in it.

*Not that I'm counting, but since Levi's birth, Levi has attended 7 baseball games or practices, been to church 3 times, and made numerous trips to Albertsons, Target and the mall. I know I didn't bounce back this fast after the other two. I think I should slow down but it seems impossible to do with two others that want to be on the go.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

A Tradition Continued

When Josiah was born, I was very concerned about wanting Caleb to feel completely included in everything that was going on since he had been the only child for so long. We had a gift for him at the hospital from Josiah and we sent him to Build-a-Bear with Granddaddy to make a animal for Josiah and one for himself. He also had a Big Brother shirt. Those things really seemed to make him feel included in everything. With this pregnancy, he remembered everything from last time. I had the gifts from Levi ready to go for the boys. I had the Big Brother shirts packed. I kind of forgot about Build-a-Bear. I thought about it but not too much. After Levi was born, Caleb was very concerned that he and Josiah needed to make a bear for Levi. So, when Levi was less than a week old, Nana and I took all three boys up to Build-a-Bear and Caleb and Josiah made a bear for Levi. It just happened to be the same bear that Caleb had made the week before for completing his chart in school. Josiah was pretty oblivious to what was going on, but Caleb took this task very seriously.

First Teddy Bear

Before Caleb was born, I remember talking with my parents about how my Dad got both my sister and I our first teddy bears. I still have mine in a box with other special things from my childhood and I assume that my sister has hers as well. I can't remember how it was decided that my Dad would continue this tradition with Caleb, but he did. He brought Caleb's bear up to the hospital. This tradition continued on with Brock, Josiah, Braxton, and now Levi. I have no idea how he chooses each bear, but it's always fun to see what he finds. I just wish he would have been able to give it to Levi in person, especially since they share the same middle name. Levi and his teddy bear look about the same size in the picture.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Room with a View

In case you were wondering, here is the view from our hospital room where Levi was born. It was pretty amazing to look out the window and admire the beautiful ocean God made. It's a site I never grow weary of watching.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Thank You, Nana!

Levi, Caleb, Josiah, and Nana

Nana and Levi

We put my Mom on a plane back to Texas yesterday. We all were really glad she was able to come and be here for Levi's birth and to help out afterwards. Although we could have survived without her, we are so thankful we did not have to. I'm sure Kerry really is since the majority of the work would have fallen on his shoulders. Josiah is having to adjust to her not being here. Nana cooked our meals, picked up around the house, played for hours with Caleb and Josiah, and had willing arms to snuggle with Levi. This is the first birth that we've had someone stay with us. It's different when you live 5 minutes from family and they can stop in whenever needed. I have to say I got pretty spoiled after this one. If, and that's a big if, we ever have another baby, I will defintely vote for having Nana come stay again. Mom, thanks for all you did for us while you were here!

Friday, March 16, 2007

Meeting Friends

Levi meets Jessica

Kendra, Levi, and Stephanie

A week ago Friday, our friends, Dan, Jessica, Kendra, and Drew came to meet Levi. It was great to introduce them to our newest addition. Kendra was so sweet when talking to Levi. I was pretty frustrated when I found out that the hospital did not allow children to visit outside of siblings. I guess I just assumed that children were allowed since our last hospital allowed other children to visit. Fortunately, we didn't stay long and we were able to visit in the comfort of our home.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

First Outing -- The Things We Do For Our Kids!

Caleb catching a ball on first

Debbie, Stephanie, and Levi

Debbie, Stephanie, Levi, Nana, and Josiah

Would you believe that Levi's first outing took place when he was 48 hours old? That's right. Caleb had a baseball game and didn't want to go unless I was going to be there to watch him. We sent Kerry and Caleb ahead for warm ups and then my mom, Josiah, Levi and I came for the game. Levi did great! He slept the entire game. It was a little chilly so I kept him warm under plenty of blankets. The things we do for our kids like attending a baseball game in chilly weather with a brand new baby!

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Levi Wilton's Birth Story

3/7/07 Caleb and Levi

3/7/07 Nana and Levi

3/7/07 Josiah and Levi

3/7/07 Levi Wilton

3/8/07 Family of Five

I was so glad to see my mom when we arrived at the airport Tuesday evening. Caleb ran to her like usual when he sees her and Josiah joined right in and ran and gave her a hug! That was a huge step for Josiah. Josiah has been one of my biggest concerns with this new baby, because I wanted to make sure he was okay. We made it home Tuesday night with plans to stay busy and on the move until our baby decided to make an appearance. My prayer was always that my mom would make it in time for this baby to be born. Once she arrived, I started praying that he/she wouldn't keep us long so that we could enjoy as much time with Nana here as possible.

Wednesday morning around 6:30am, I woke up with a contraction. I assumed it was just another Braxton Hicks contraction, but deep down was hoping this was the day. Everyone else slept to a decent hour and we were at the mall by 10am. I was showing my mom some little girl things that she could always come back and get if this baby turned out to be a girl. I mentioned to my mom in the car that I had had a couple of contractions in the car on the way to the mall and they felt a little different than the ones I had been having. Once in the mall, I would tell her when I was having one and they appeared to be pretty consistent. We decided to eat at Ruby's Diner (one of Caleb and my favorite places to eat) in the mall and we started writing down how far apart and how long each contraction was. We still were planning on going to the Farmer's Market before going home. However, after we finished our meal we thought maybe we better go home.

Kerry called and I told him that I was having contractions but not to rush home. I told him I would call him when I felt it was the real thing. Once we got home and I laid down with Josiah to get him to sleep for his nap, the contractions started coming closer together and stronger. Fortunately, Kerry decided to head on home before I called him back and I'm glad he did. As soon as Josiah was asleep, Kerry and I left for the hospital. We decided that it would be best if Josiah got a good nap and Caleb could play at home.

We got into our hospital room at about 1:55pm. My room did not have the right bed, so I had to sit and wait while they switched beds. Once that was settled, they checked me and discovered that I was 5 cm dialated and completely effaced. Our baby was definitely on the way. It took them 2 tries to get the i.v. in which I was not happy about. I'm just glad I didn't know what was ahead or I probably would have left. They started the fluids and the antibiotics once the i.v. was in and I requested some pain medication before the epidural (very, very thankful) was put in. When the anesthesiologist arrived, I was taking for granted that it would take all of five minutes like my last two pregnancies. Forty-five minutes later, alot of needle poking, and some tears due to pain and a few other things, they still had not gotten the epidural to work. I was pretty frustrated. I had never even considered the epidural not working and had no desire to try again. I asked what my options were and one they mentioned was a spinal. After checking to see how far along I was which was 8 cm, I decided on the spinal. I was positive that even though the spinal would only last three hours, I would be fine.

I felt so much better once the spinal had been given and was even able to smile again. Nana and the boys arrived at the hospital and they had fun hanging out in the room with us. Once it was time to break my water, Nana and the boys went for a walk around the hospital. When they returned, they still had not broken my water due to my midwife having another patient. Once the nurse and midwife finally returned, Nana and the boys left again. I can't remember what time they broke my water, but I pushed for about 3 or 4 different sets before our baby was born. The best part of the labor was after our baby's head and arms were out, Lisa (midwife) told me to reach down and pull my baby out. That was such a wonderful experience and I was able to see right away that we had a boy, Levi Wilton. He was born at 6:35pm. He snuggled right up on my chest and I was able to spend some time with him before they weighed him and checked a few other things.

Once I was decent again, we hurried Nana and the boys back into the room. It was really fun to tell them that they had a brother. Caleb and Josiah were both so good. They opened up their presents that Levi had gotten them and started playing right away. Daddy finally loaded the boys up and took them to McDonalds while my mom stayed with me and Levi. Levi nursed like a pro right from the start. I really enjoyed the fact that Levi didn't have to leave our room even when they gave him his bath. It all took place in our room. Once Daddy and the boys got back, we spent some time together as a family. We called Granddaddy and let him know that Levi shared his middle name. At 10:30pm, it was time to finally load our two big boys up for home. I wasn't sure how Josiah would do. Caleb wanted to stay with us like he did when Josiah was born, but we explained that Josiah needed him at home with him. Josiah did so good! He waved bye and was fine, not tears. He's definitely loves to be on the go.

It was great to finally be alone as you can be in a hospital with your baby. I loved snuggling with him all night long and starting the bonding process. Lisa and Dr. Bob (the pediatrician) were very understanding that we did not want to stay long in the hospital. Lisa was there at 7am to clear me to leave. Dr. Bob came in around noon to take a look at Levi, perform his "surgery" and clear him for discharge. Levi had his hearing test done and pictures taken and we were all set to leave. Originally, one of our nurses said that we would have to wait 2 hours after Dr. Bob left before we could leave but our pediatrician saw no reason for that and allowed us to be on our way as soon as Nana and the boys arrived with the car.

We were in the car and on our way home about 25 hours after we had checked into the hospital. Levi wasn't even 24 hours old. I was never so glad to be on my way back home. This was Josiah's first time ever away from me overnight and Caleb's 3rd time ever to be away from both Kerry and I overnight. We all survived and could not have made it without all of Nana's help. Both boys have transitioned so well with Levi here. It's like he's always been here. I fall in love with Levi a little more everyday. He is such a wonderful baby who loves to snuggle and rarely fusses. I can't wait to watch his personality develop as he grows. We are now a family of 5.

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Daddy's Post

Well I thought I'd log in and let you here from me...Dad (Kerry). You know, I've always known that the Lord had a plan for my life even when I couldn't see it. In the past two three days I have seen my purpose be lived out right before my very own eyes. To be a husband to Steph and a dad to Caleb, Josiah, and Levi. I am a blessed man.
When I think about the great marriage that Steph and I enjoy and the three beautiful boys we have been entrusted with I can't help but say, "Thank You God even when I don't deserve it!".

It is my prayer that you will find your purpose in life in Jesus and be blessed as you seek what God has planned for your life.

As for me, today I am the most blessed man alive!

Thank You!

Dad (Kerry)

Friday, March 09, 2007

We're Home!

I'm back! I just wanted to let everyone know that we made it home yesterday around 3:30pm. It sure is great to be home. I'll write more and post more pictures over the next couple of days. Josiah and Caleb have both been great with Levi. Levi had a good first night at home as well. More to come.

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Pictures of Levi

Sweet Little Levi

Levi and Mommy
Daddy and Levi
The proud brothers

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Levi is Here!!

Levi Wilton
was born at 6:35pm
Weight: 8lbs 12 oz
21 inches
Mom and baby are doing great!


Nana called around 4:00pm California time and said Steph was dilated to 8 centimeters. They gave her an epidural(sp?), but it did not work. They came in and took it out and gave her a shot in her spine. She is numb from the waist down now and is very glad that worked!

Baby on the Way

We are in the hospital...

Steph is getting her med's so we should have a baby soon.

Posted by Kerry (Dad)

Steph's in Labor

I am sure Steph will love me for posting this picture.

RyAnn here. Stephanie is in Labor. Nana, Stephanie and the boys were out shopping around 11:00am and Stephanie started feeling some contractions. She and Kerry have made it safely to the hospital and she is 5 centimeters dilated and 100% effaced. Josiah is napping and Caleb and Nana are playing outside. I will keep you posted! Will it be a girl or a boy?

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Nana Comes Today!

I can almost breathe. My mom arrives tonight to help us as the newest addition to our family arrives. I am praying that this little one will not keep us waiting long once my mom gets here. We plan to keep busy until this little one arrives in hopes that staying active will encourage this baby to come soon. I went to see my midwife yesterday and I am 2 cm dialated and 60% effaced. At least that means the baby is making some progress.

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Can Men Experience That Nesting Thing?

I have to admit that I have been very cautious these past few weeks about making sure the house is clean/picked up, laundry under control, and our bags pretty much ready to go. I made several long lists of things that needed to get done before the baby arrived and have most of it completed except for printing out a few directions for my Mom which I should be able to finish up today. So, now we just wait.

However, it seems that my husband has gotten into wanting things in order as well. Before Christmas, our garbage disposal and garage door opener both broke. I have gotten so used to not having them that it has become no big deal. This past week, he decided that they needed to be fixed before the baby arrived. In the course of two days, he got the garage and garbage disposal fixed. I'm not complaining and have already gotten used to these two things once again. I just don't remember this with our other two. I'm sure it has something to do with family not being close by and having a 19 month old as well. All we need now is my Mom and we're ready to go. Six more days until my Mom arrives and hopefully a baby shortly after!