IT'S A...

We had our 20 week ultrasound yesterday afternoon, and we're pretty sure we're having a little girl!! Now, I say pretty sure, because she wasn't being the most cooperative during the appointment, but our U/S Tech took a good long time with us, and felt pretty confident in her girl prediction by the time we were finished. Girls are always a bit harder to tell, since it's more obvious when you see boy parts, as opposed to the absence of something. But, Moira was right and I guess she'll get her wish to share her room with this little one!

Other than determining gender, we saw lots of little fingers and toes, a 4 chambered heart, a well developing brain, all bones and organs where and how they should be, and a little baby that's already measuring just over a week ahead of her due date! They estimate she was about 13 oz, which puts her in the 90th percentile in size already - I guess we really do make big babies, no matter what kinda weight this Mama gains! She also confirmed my theory that I have an anterior placenta (in the front) this time, which explains why I didn't feel this baby moving as early as I did with our other two. I got kudos from our OB on my slow & steady weight gain, which was the first time EVER in the history of my pregnancies, and I only added another couple of pounds to the grand total so far. We were blessed with an uplifting appointment, healthy baby & Mommy, and now I can't wait to start shopping for PINK! :o)

Here I am getting all gooped up, which Moira responded to by saying "Eww... what's all that goopy stuff?!" (Flattering picture, huh? ;o) It's hard to look cute in this situation!)

Here's our baby girl, snugly as can be inside Mommy!


And finally, here's a clip of the two big kids announcing their baby Sister to the world!


Family Update

I realized today, while getting things ready for our big sonogram this afternoon, that SO much has happened in the last year of our lives! Last year at this time, we were starting a new year, with much hope and prayer, and a lot of apprehension and some worry too. If I could have turned the page to peek into this day in the future, I would have been filled with so much joy and thankfulness, as I am today, over what has transpired. We are so blessed!

I know I've been lacking a bit in my posting as of late, but I think now is be a great opportunity to give an update on all of us. (Warning: I'm making up for lost time, so a slightly lengthy report is to follow.) Here is what's going on with us, in bullet form for easier digestion (and writing)!

  • We are so thankful for Collin's job! We're still amazed when we consider the provision and love that God gave as He carried us through the last year. Not only have our needs been provided for, but our hopes and wants too! What an incredibly loving Father we have to cling to. Collin has been at his job with L3 for just over 7 months now, and he's sincerely enjoying it - it brings me so much joy to see him thriving and appreciated in his work. He has made several business trips out to Vandenberg AFB for launches and such in the last few months, and has two more planned for February and May, along with a trip to Colorado Springs in April. While he won't have his "annual review" for another week or two, he's been told by his superiors that they've been quite pleased with him and there are, foreseeably, only good things to come.

  • I heard from our church preschool/MDO yesterday, and they finally have an opening in their 3 year old class for Ian! We've had him on the waiting list since sometime last Fall, but a spot finally opened and we were bumped to the top of the list since we're now church members. This decision required some discussion, as we hadn't planned to enroll him until the new school year, but we've decided to go ahead now to assure his spot in the 4 year old class this Fall. For now he'll be going on Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 9am to 1pm, and I think it'll be a good outlet for him, especially now that Moira's in school and once the newborn is here and taking up lots of Mommy's time! He seems excited, and perhaps a little nervous, but overall enthused. He'll have his first day on Monday.

Ian fell asleep in the car on the way home from Nashville last weekend - part little boy with his stuffed puppy, part big boy with his cool shades. So cute!

  • Moira is starting to read! While we've been working with her, and she's been learning more every day at school, we were surprised during Grammy's visit in December that she plopped down in front of us with an easy reader book, All Tutus Should Be Pink, and read the whole thing!! She was so proud of herself, as were we all, and she's been getting better and better at it since. I volunteered in her class a couple of weeks ago, and had the opportunity to take groups of three kiddos at a time to the Cafeteria to work on reading, and was pleased to find that Moira is on the upper end of her class in her ability to read. She's doing great with sounding out the words and recognizes many now without having to try. She also loves to be "quizzed" on her spelling while we drive around town in the car together. She's such a cutie, and we're enjoying her enthusiasm for school and zest for life in general. Oh, and she can't wait to be a big Sister again! ;o)

Moira has always enjoyed Carousels, so when we saw this one at Opry Mills in Nashville last weekend, we knew we wouldn't get outta there without at least one ride for the kids. Her smile always makes the money worth it!

  • Collin has been seeing a Chiropractor lately for some back pain that started a year or so ago, and has only gotten worse. He was in a bad car accident as a teenager, which put his back and neck all out of alignment, so it's a good thing he's finally going to get adjustments again. He spent his whole time in the military going without, and we didn't realize just how much he needed to be going - fortunately, our health insurance covers the visits aside from a co-pay. Please keep him in mind as he's having all the "kinks" worked out! When he first went in, his pelvis was tilted to the point where one leg was sitting 1.5 inches shorter than the other, and he's lost all curvature to his spine at the neck. He's been going twice a week for the last 3 weeks, and will continue to do so for another month, until they get him "fixed," at which point he'll only have to go once a month. It's actually a blessing that he finally got in to see someone, because if he'd let it go longer, he was looking at a long road of pain, future arthritis, and possible back surgery!

  • Since Cailin's surgery, she's seemed to be doing pretty well. I did take her back in for a check up earlier this month, and they gave her some antibiotics which knocked out a bladder infection (which is frequent among TCC patients and those with smaller bladders) but found that there's once again blood in her urine. Unfortunately, it's impossible to diagnose why without taking her back down to the Specialist in Birmingham for another ($400) ultrasound. Our vet seems to think that it's likely the cancer has returned, and even with an ultrasound to confirm that theory, there's nothing left that we can do for her. SO, we decided to forgo the diagnostic ultrasound, and hope for the best. We're thankful that she isn't in pain, and that she seems like "normal Cailin" - just as loving, playful and funny as always. Our hopes are that we'll still have lots of quality time with our sweet puppy and nothing will come of this discovery for a long, long time. Meanwhile we'll give her all the happiness and comfort we can, and continue to enjoy our time with her.

  • My women's Bible study group started back up yesterday, and we began Beth Moore's new study on Esther, which looks like it's going to be good. It's great to be back in this Monday routine, and while the group is a bit bigger than it was during our last study, it was wonderful to see familiar faces and I'm looking forward to getting to know all the new faces too! I've pretty much been a hermit in this pregnancy so far (which I also did in the beginning of my pregnancies with Moira and Ian, so this didn't come as a surprise), but I'm starting to come out of it now that I'm feeling better and my energy is coming back. Some of the ladies in our Sunday school class were sweet enough to invite me to a few scrapbooking crops, so I'm planning to take them up on it this time and join them at our local scrapbooking store next Friday night. I have high hopes to finish Ian's baby book (I know... I know) before this little one comes, so maybe these ladies will encourage me to that end. I was also invited to go see Bride Wars with a gal about my age from our church tonight, along with some of her girlfriends, so I'm going to try to make that after the sonogram appointment. Should be fun!

  • And finally, the "bun" is doing just fine, and we're all excited to see him/her this afternoon. I'm starting to feel better, although not completely over the morning sickness hurdle. I'm finally feeling the baby a bit now, and can't wait until Collin is able to feel him or her too! As of my last appointment, I'd only gained 4 pounds so far this pregnancy (which is amazing for me) so I'm hoping I'll be able to keep my total weight gain down this time around. For those of you wondering, I think we have decided to go ahead and find out the sex today. I think it'll be a good decision for our family, and as much fun as keeping it a surprise could be, I just don't know that it's what's right for us right now. So, big news to come in my next post!! Oh, and for all of you with greedy little eyes who have asked for belly pics... here are two from last Saturday! :)

I think I'm carrying pretty low and out in front, so far. (Excuse the silly look on my face - Collin always tries to make me laugh when he's taking pics of me, and I always end up looking goofy!)


Poll: Boy or Girl?

So, no, this is not the update I promised at the beginning of the week. I'm still working on that one, but I have something more pressing (and possibly interesting) to talk about. If you've been following our blog, you should know that we're expecting baby #3 in about 22 weeks. You would also know that we've been thinking about NOT finding out the gender of this one until his/her birthday. Well, in the last week or two I've begun questioning myself on this semi-decision.

Being that our 20 week ultrasound is only about a week away, I'm under pressure to decide sooner rather than later. While I've liked the idea of being surprised at the birth, I'm starting to wonder if this is the best route for Collin & Janelle to take. See, in the past, my argument for finding out has always been for the "planner" in me... to be able to get the nursery ready, buy gender-specific clothing and items for baby, etc. This time around I'm actually fine with waiting for that reason, but I'm starting to wonder if it would serve Collin and me better to find out to make this pregnancy feel a bit more real. This pregnancy has just been so surreal so far. In fact, Collin's admitted that he'd rather find out, because it would help him start to bond with the baby and get used to the idea of another little life about to make his/her entrance into our world. He seems to be pretty much leaving the final decision up to me, but I can't help but feel that his feelings are hard to argue with, especially when I'm feeling a bit the same way myself.

As interesting as it is to hear how others like or dislike finding out, it really is such an individual thing, and I hesitate to go with something that might not be best for us and our little one. So, this will be a big decision for us to make over the next week... to know or not to know?

Therefore, in the spirit of our indecision, and while we're trying to figure out what to do, I thought it would be fun to take a poll and see what you all think... is it a boy or a girl? To the left sidebar, you'll find a poll where you can officially vote, but please feel free to leave a comment on your vote (or our problem of whether to find out or not) in the comments section of this post too! The poll will be open for 7 days from today, closing right before our 20 week ultrasound, when hopefully we will have made a decision by then to find out or not! Wish us luck and happy voting!! :)


Our holidays

Okay, so I'm really behind on this, but here are the albums of our pictures from Christmas Eve/Christmas and New Years Eve too (click on the pics below to view the albums). We had a wonderful, quiet time at home this year and were surprised by how enjoyable it was. An update on what's been up with us lately to come this week...

Christmas Eve & Christmas

New Years Eve