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Tubes

When your alarm sounds at 5:30 a.m. you know it’s the start of a not so ordinary day.  When I heard that not so sweet sound on my night stand I knew, no matter how bad I wanted to, I could not push snooze.  Instead it was time to quietly slide out from underneath my super warm covers and prepare myself both physically and emotionally for a very full morning.

A morning of anesthesia and hospital gowns.  Not for me, but for my 2.5 year old.  It was one of those moments in parenting where I couldn’t push away the thought of, “I wish it was me.”  I wish it was me the doctor would be checking and not my little guy.  I wish it was me who couldn’t eat breakfast because he was about to have “surgery.”

But, 5:36 a.m….no time for thoughts of empathy, simply time to do the next thing.

I proceeded to get myself ready while my husband woke our sleepy toddler.  “Where are we going daddy?”

No answer from daddy.

Sometimes it’s just best if we don’t find out things too early.  After a summer in and out of the pediatric office, the last thing he wanted to hear was we were going to check on his ears…again.

Fortunately our little guy was too sleepy to ask any more questions or request breakfast as we shuffled to the car at 6 a.m.  A quick kiss goodbye to daddy and baby sister and we were off.  We’ve known for a few weeks now that Colby needed tubes in his ears.

A simple, outpatient surgery.  It would be good for him.  No shots even needed.  But something about hospitals and surgery cause a mothers heart to beat a bit quicker.  I think it’s the unknown, or perhaps the lack of control.  (Like we ever really have control to begin with?)

We’d received the information we needed, we’d prayed with friends and family, and it was time.  So as I drove my little man down an empty early morning road doing my best to keep any feelings at bay, it was go time.  Which of course means country music on the radio…

As soon as we entered the hospital parking lot he immediately knew we were at the doctor.  But, with our toy moose in hand, he stepped out of the car and trusted me as we entered the office for check-in.

A few short minutes later we took an elevator to the second floor for surgery.

We were greeted by a sweet nurse who whispered to me above Colby’s head, “Does he know what he is here for?”

I politely smiled and whispered, “Not a clue.”

Without missing a beat she weighed Colby and did all the necessary checks before we met with the doctor.  Our little patient was then placed into his hospital gown, puppy dogs and all:

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Not so sure about it all, I continued to do my best to distract and make everything seem super fun!  (All the while wishing the whole thing could just be over with.)

Our ENT doctor came in and chatted a minute and told Colby he would see him down the hall.  A few minutes later my sweet boy began to tell me he was ready to go home.  So, I did what any good mother would do, I bribed him with McDonald’s after we were finished.

When the anesthesiologist & another nurse entered the room my little man went silent.  How is it we all know “hair nets” and scrubs mean something is about to happen?

But the team was great and prodded my little man with all sorts of questions.  He finally opened up when they started to ask him about McDonald’s.  (There’s a reason those golden arches have taken over the world.)  And before I knew it they had convinced him to walk down the hall way with them for a bit and then he could come right back to mom.

And just like that, he was gone…

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Of course, the “feelings” momma that I am was ready to react, but it was not the time. Instead I pulled a granola bar from my bag and turned the hospital t.v. onto “Say Yes to the Dress.”  After all, what else should one watch at 7:15 a.m. on a Friday morning while your child has tubes put in his ears?

Less than 20 minutes later the Dr. returned to the room and told me Colby did awesome!  He gave me a few things to watch for as the day progressed and said Colby would return to the room shortly.

And, just like that I heard the cries in the hallway.  You learn to recognize the cries of your little ones.  And in came my groggy, cotton eared, puppy dog gowned baby.

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The one who just minutes ago walked down the hall with a, “Bye Mom!” was back in my arms ready for some hugs and snuggles (and some McDonalds.)

We rested in the room for a minute and then headed back to the elevator ready for a treat from the golden arches.  All before 9 a.m.!

Mornings like this are what makes the job of “Mom” unlike any other.  It’s a job that forces you beyond comfort zone.  It’s a job that makes you cling to the Lord and trust in His goodness, the ultimate Father.  It’s a job that leaves you time and time again saying, “You got this God, help me to be still.”  It’s a job that I wouldn’t trade for anything in this world.

 

 

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Summer Days

We are days away…

Days away from saying “Goodbye” to Summer 2016.  It is safe to say some of the days have been LOOONG but this summer has flown!  We’ve had lots of highs and some lows.

Here are some highlights, before I forget, and before the moment is too far gone:

Stormy Weather

Lake country & western Ky, you have rocked our world with storms this summer.  I will no longer see a thunderstorm approaching without holding my breath a bit for something more to follow…

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We’ve gone without power, boiled water advisories, and seen a tornado warning (or two).  But, the Lord has provided and we are totally FINE.  I just aged a year or two with some surprises along the way.

Staff Families

We love our Crossings family.  No doubt about it.  From mornings at the pool to “crafty” days in the heat, we have loved and been loved by this sweet group.  Our kids have ran wild and we have passed sicknesses with the best of them.  But I wouldn’t trade it!

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Late Nights, Early Mornings

Sleep has been in short supply for everyone in the Salter home this summer.  Daddy leaves early early, kiddos wake up some nights, and camp runs late late.  Who really needs sleep anyway?

PLAY, PLAY, PLAY

One of my “summer goals”, was to play with my kids.  I think we have achieved that this summer.  We have gone to the pool, played at parks, visited family with one agenda…PLAY!

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That’s what summers are for after all.

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Dining Hall!

I have not cooked dinner, ALL.SUMMER.LONG!  This is such a treat. We love our time in the dining hall with daddy and seeing all the camp staff and friends.  And I love not planning meals…and cooking…We do eat the same meals each week so it will be nice to have a few different things when summer ends, but I’m sure going to miss the ease of the dining hall.

Growing Babies

Our babies have grown SO MUCH this summer.

Riley Faye-

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Our sweet girl is 6 months old!  She’s 21 pounds, and in the 100th percentile for head and weight.  She is so close to sitting up on her own.  She is super content and a very happy girl.  She is loved by many, and loves others well!  She has two bottom teeth and started solids this month.

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Our boy is growing so fast.  He talks non stop and has never met a stranger.  He loves loves loves camp.  He started riding a bike this summer and has taken off.  He is wild and crazy, and his heart is soft.  We love this sweet boy!

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DOCTOR…

Want to know how to get to know your new pediatrician?  Have a summer full of ear infections!  We are past the first name basis with our pediatrician.  She has taken good care of us, and our Colby is scheduled to receive tubes in his ears here very soon.  Between the 4 of us, I think there has only been 1 week of the summer where we were not on an antibiotic or visiting the doctor. But, we made the best of it, and I’m so thankful to be in a place to receive the care we need for our little family!

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Yes…I took a selfie at the doctor.

Family Time

Summer schedule makes for unique times when we are “all together.”  We have picnicked in daddies office.

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We have had many talks on the golf cart.

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And we have had many Wednesday mornings at home on the couch, doors locked, just enjoying being at home.  Never dull.

My blogs have slacked, my days have been challenging, and the summer has come and almost gone…and in the midst of all the “stuff” that has happened in our days,

LIVES HAVE CHANGED!

Hundreds of students have heard the Gospel.  They have accepted Jesus as Lord of their lives and crossed over from death to life.

The Lord has moved this summer and this crazy crew will forever be grateful for summer 2016!

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5 Months

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Day by day this little chunk (because it’s always cute to be a chunk) of a baby is turning into a little girl before our very eyes.  Just last week her SECOND tooth pushed through the skin.  This only makes her very wide grin so much sweeter.

My girl studies people.  Riley is constantly watching.  It’s a cute awareness of those around her.  There are countless times throughout the day that I will look over at her on her playmat, in her carseat, or resting in her crib and we will meet eyes where she has been waiting attentively for me to glance her direction.

When our eyes meet, she is quick to smile and kick her feet as I see the excitement run all through her…right out of her toes!

She sits peacefully (for the most part) on my lap when we are out and about, and in the midst of everything going on around us, she will turn her head and look up searching for my eyes.  I’ll look down and say hi, and that cheesy grin returns.  (Melts my heart every time.)  This attentiveness, a true affection for seeing others has caught my attention with this girl.

I pray the Lord takes those sweet eyes of hers and cultivates in her a heart that sees others.  Sees their needs and seeks to help.  Sees their loneliness, and chooses to be a friend.  Sees their masks and desires to be real before others.

A girl who sees others and is not focused on herself…

Riley Faye, my prayer for you on your 5 month birthday is that you would one day have a heart like Christ…that you would, do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourself.  (Philippine 2:4)  Look to Christ first in all you do, and ask Him daily to help you see others.

 

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Baby, Baby, Baby…

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I recently heard someone refer to a babies first 3 months of life as “The 4th Trimester.”  I think that is a very accurate statement!  There is nothing simple or scheduled about it.  As I trek along on this journey in motherhood with baby #2, I continue to pick up tricks along the way.

If you are a momma to a teeny one, know a momma of a teeny one, or ever plan to be a momma of a teeny one, here are a few tricks that might be beneficial to you as well.

Fisher Price Rock-n-Play

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This handy little sleeper followed me room to room and served as Riley’s bed for her first 3 months.  It kept her snug and cozy so her naps and night time sleeping were uninterrupted by newborn baby movements.  It is super easy to store and fits in tight corners.  She may or may not have slept in it in our closet for her first month of life.

Baby Bjorn

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I am a huge fan of “baby wearing.”  (Don’t I sound like such an in the know mom?)  BUT, I struggled finding just the right carrier for my babies.  The wraps were too hard for me to figure out, no youtube video was enough to help.  Other carriers were too heavy, or forced my baby in awkward positions, or required assistance to strap into, etc.  Until my sister-in-law introduced me to Baby Bjon!  Hands down the easiest to get into, super light weight, and super comfy for baby.  Both my babies LOVE people so the forward facing feature on this little contraption is our favorite.  (It works for newborns, 8 lb. and up!)

Gas Drops

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We refer to these as our “magic drops.”  When my babies fuss, I will do just about whatever it takes to restore their peace (and mine too).  One of those magic things is infant gas drops.  A little squirt in the mouth, and instantly placing the pacifier in, and baby is chowing down on a grape flavored treat and silenced.  Do not judge until you try.  I never leave home without them.

Baby Wise

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This book…I hesitate to even put this on here because I have to tell you.  It messed me up with my firstborn.  As a mom, I felt this unbelievable pressure to do everything right.  I wanted to live “by the book” if you will.  The first few weeks of sweet Colby’s life I payed more attention to the books than my boy.

So when Riley was born I said NO WAY to any books…until month 2…when I pulled this book back of my shelf.  This time instead of reading it as rules to follow, I decided to take it as advice, take it or leave it.  There are some BIG helps in this small little book.  It has helped me tremendously with setting a routine for our sweet girl.

Before you even touch this book, learn your baby and enjoy your baby.  Then, when the “new baby, what in the world has happened to my life” fog lifts, listen to a few tips to follow or to pitch.

Formula

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Colby started formula at 4 weeks and Riley began day 1 in the hospital.  This can be quite the “hot topic” among mommas, please don’t let it be.  For so many reasons, physically, emotionally, mentally, formula has worked best for us.  Whatever your story, please don’t make feeding your baby a bigger deal than it needs to be.  You and your husband decide what’s best for you and your child and do it.  Do not let this rob you of the joy of having a new baby in your home. You’re not going to mess them up, and after a few months pass how they ate their first few weeks of life will NOT be a big deal whatsoever.

And if you’re thinking formula, SAM’S club has an awesome “off brand” to Enfamil infant that our Riley loves!

Baby Merlins Magic Sleep Suit

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I realize this one might get some chuckles, but do not mock until you try!  I told you Riley slept in her rock-n-play until 3 months, all snug and all night.  So, when we moved her to her crib she was not a huge fan and woke often.  I saw a friend of mine post about her magic sleep suit and I instantly ordered one, no questions asked.  Trey calls it Riley’s little “Michelin Man” suit.  And I’ll be the first to admit she looks a bit silly in it.

But, y’all, she loves it!  It’s just padded enough to help her startle reflexes not wake her in the night.  It is super easy to get into, and it doesn’t require all types of extra blankets.  I tried other “sleep sacks” but nothing has been as fabulous as this.  I may or may not have just ordered her 6-9 month sleep suit before writing this post…

What about you?  What are some of your favorite tricks?

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4 Months

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Riley Faye, 4 months (and a few days…)

Weight:  17 lbs. 14 oz

Height:  25 in.

Likes:  Smiling at big brother.  Playing on her activity mat.  Walking around, facing forward, so she can see everything.  Eating, lots and lots of eating!  TALKING, if she’s awake, she has something to say.

Dislikes:  Tummy time.  Teething, her first two bottom teeth are working hard to poke through.  Trying to nap anywhere besides her swing or her bed.

This girl is growing and changing everyday.  She has become so aware of her surroundings.  She searches for voices when she hears a change in the room.  She is noticing things in front of her and grabbing for them.  She waits politely while someone speaks to her but is quick to jump in on the action when there is a pause.

There is one little guy in our home who adores his baby sister…

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Colby is crazy about “Baby Riley” and she thinks he is something special too.  He is quick to introduce her to everyone we pass at the grocery, dining out, etc.  He is attentive to her needs, and he will do anything to make her smile!

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Big brother currently tells everyone “We got baby Riley from the doctor…”

It was a true joy to celebrate being a momma of two for Mother’s Day this year!

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Riley Faye, thank you for being a sweet sweet addition to our family!  We love you!

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