Monday, February 27, 2012

Third Time's a Charm!!!

I was going to write about labor and delivery with Hayes, but changed my mind. He's here and that's the fun part. I will say that St. Lukes was awesome and I loved it. Harris and Walker were born at Methodist and it was a good experience too but I would definitely recommend St Lukes.
So Hayes David Goolsby made his grand entrance at 5:04 pm, 2/17/12, weighing in at 7 lbs, 10oz! He's the biggest of the three.

Ok, there were a couple of things worth mentioning about delivery. As much as Tom and I were convinced it was a boy, we didn't really KNOW. When it came right down to it, we had no idea what we were having. That ended up being really exciting. Strengely, I hadn't even thought about that part of it. The nurses and dr were guessing and it was fun to hear "It's a boy!" and meet our new little guy that way. If anyone is thinking about not finding out, I'd recommend it, at least once. It made delivery a totally different experience. As it turned out, we were right! Good thing, since I had boy clothes hanging in the closet, we only had a boy name, and were in every way unprepared for anything but a little boy.

He was very relaxed when he was born, just laid calmly on me and didn't cry till they took him to weigh him.

Due to various things, none of them medically related, we were in the hospital until Sunday late afternoon. It was sort of a vacation because they basically left us alone, which was PERFECT. We were both able to get some sleep and Hayes was very chill the whole time. It was by far the easiest hospital stay. But I did have to wear a lot of bracelets.

They wanted you to wear these special yellow "No slip" socks the entire time but I rebelled and wore my regular "dangerous and slippery" ones. Like you don't feel icky enough after having a baby, there's no way I was wearing those for three days. Those are NOT my legs, by the way.

Saturday morning my parents brought Harris up to meet Hayes. Walker didn't come because we thought seeing Tom and I but then having to leave us again would just upset him unnecessarily.

Harris was super excited to see Hayes but very cautious about holding him. I don't blame him. I was a little uncertain about holding Harris when he was a newborn, too.

I had explained to Harris that when babies cry that's how they talk. Every time Hayes cries now, Harris wants to know what he's saying. I forgot how literally he takes things. Hayes is not a big crier, but when he does both Harris and Walker are concerned. They immediately take off looking for him and are telling anyone who will listen that Baby Hayes is crying. And every time Walker sees a picture of Hayes, he kisses the camera. Sweet boys. And this is kind of gross but it's funny and I want to remember it. Harris saw a meconium diaper of Hayes' and CANNOT stop talking about it. He's very politically correct about the whole thing. He has told me several times that Hayes' poop is "different" not better or worse, just "different."

Here's the whole crew looking at the newbie.

We had plenty of time in the hospital to sit around and stare at the new little guy. I am not generally in love with the newborn/infant stage, but this time is different. My prayer this entire pregnancy has been to prepare my heart for this new little person and the Lord absolutely did. It's not my nature to embrace all that comes with newborns but I'm really enjoying it this time around. Not me, at all.
The whole transition from two to three has just been so much easier than anticipated. It has been extremely busy. EXTREMELY busy. But that's to be expected and not a big deal. We'll get settled soon. This whole experience has just been really sweet.

Look at this.  Look. At. This.

I love, love, love that sweet little face. Hayes is awesome. :) I'm so thankful for another healthy, precious baby to love.

"The LORD your God is with you, he is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you, he will quiet you with his love, he will rejoice over you with singing."
Zephsnish 3:17

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Baby #3

EVERYONE is asking if I'm excited to find out what we're having. Really, that's not on my radar right now. For one, I'm irrationally certain that it's a boy. But besides that, my main focus is what this little one's personality will be. The two little people we have now could not be more different from each other. Realizing that each kid is different and that's just how God made them was a shock to me. I just assumed the second child would be as easygoing and obedient as the first because I took all the credit for Harris' good behavior. Ha! I needed to be humbled. Even as an infant, Walker was clearly a completely different child. The picture at the top makes me laugh because it exactly captures their differences. Cautious Harris would prefer that his pants not get wet, while Walker charges through, just ready for an adventure.

The Lord made them different because that's what our family needs. Another compliant child wouldn't strengthen our family like the strong willed one we were given. Now that Walker is really old enough to be more verbal and be more of a presence, it's been neat to watch that interaction unfold. Their differences are molding each of their character's (and ours!!) in a way that similar personalities wouldn't. Given the choice before-hand, I would have picked another mellow temperament. I'm so thankful I wasn't allowed to choose. My entire life right now isn't at all what I would have picked for myself and I wouldn't change any of it! The Lord's ways are infinitely better than mine and this is just another area where that is becoming clear because I wouldn't change one thing about either of my sweet little boys.

One woman wrote about this much more beautifully than I could.
She's talking about the gifts each child is given and how they shine in different ways. I agree with all of it. Every single bit.

So, armed with this information, I'm really curious to see what #3 will be like. We prayed for MONTHS about the decision to have a third and I know that this baby is just for us. Before I was pregnant, I wanted a girl. Now, after months of praying that the Lord would prepare my heart for this baby, I have a sense of peace either way. This baby uniquely belongs to our family and it will be just the right fit for us. This child and its individual personality will be better than anything I could have ever orchestrated. Just the right sibling for our boys and just the right child to parent, bringing a whole other dimension to our lives that we couldn't have anticipated. One baby changes your whole life and takes away the selfishness you didn't know you had. The second one makes you realize there's more room in your heart than you thought and that you DO love another little human as much as the first one, impossible as that seemed. The third will have its own lesson, I'm sure. So, boy or girl, I'm just excited to meet our new family member and fall in love all over again.

"For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways," declares the LORD.
Isaiah 55:8

DISCLAIMER-I wrote this several days ago, and in the meantime came to the realization that two kids was PLENTY and there was no way we could possibly manage three. I moaned around asking what we could have been thinking and wondering how in the world we would ever function as a family. Friends prayed me through it and I'm back to excitement. Just thought I'd share my meltdown in case anyone else had one.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

My sweet, sweet boys

I could not have had a sweeter Valentine's Day. I felt awful and was completely convinced I was going into labor at any moment but it was still a super sweet day. Harris was beyond excited to go to his party at school and treasured every Valentine he received. He looked at each one carefully, telling me who it was from and when he wanted to eat the candy, then put it back like a priceless artifact. Cute. When he got up from his nap that sweet boy gave me two pieces of his loot and told me one was for me, one for the baby. Are you kidding me?!?!?!

I wanted to remember the sweetness so of course I grabbed a pic. He's holding the box he set aside for "me and the baby."

And this is random, but since when did Valentine's day become such an event at preschool? I saw teachers getting flowers, boxes of chocolate, and who knows what else. And almost every valentine in Harris' box was fancy. We just got a box at Target of Spiderman valentine's and each one came with a pencil. I thought those were pretty fancy. No, pretty much everyone else gave out some little treat bag or Pinterest craft. Is that the new norm???

Anyway, back to Harris.
He started putting on a show for the camera. For a shy little boy, he really is a ham.

And this was a few days ago, but when I got Walker up from his nap he only wanted to cuddle. He laid his head on my shoulder and told me, "Hold me tight." Sweet thing. He's such a rowdy, energetic little boy that it makes those times even more precious.

Tom took Walker to run a couple of errands and Harris stayed home with me. We were working our 14th puzzle and out of the blue he said, "I like hanging out with you." Really, there couldn't be any better present than hearing him tell me that. What a sweetie. I love that he noticed he liked it and was kind enough to say it, too. Bless his heart.

I was feeling rough, so the treats Tom bought had to be shared with Harris instead of me. I enjoyed watching them have fun together more than I possibly could have enjoyed actually eating it. Well, maybe not.

They were having some fruit and dipping it in melted chocolate. And we didn't leave Walker out on purpose, he's just so picky he wouldn't try chocolate. Just as well, really. But Tom and Harris were having fun.

Tom gave me a card Harris picked out for me.Walker claimed it instantly.

It plays a song and Harris got one LAST valentine's day and they still have it. It's pretty tattered but it is still beloved.

FYI, all my nesting is completely over. I'm pretty much laying around and talking about how uncomfortable I am. Thankfully, Walker took over the last thing I needed to do. The bibs and burp cloths were in a bin ready to be put into the dresser. I heard him saying, "Good job Walker!" and "This looks so nice." Here's what he was doing.
He had put away every single thing into drawers.

He was so proud of himself! That's the only picture that wasn't blurry because he was moving so quickly to get it done. Thanks, buddy.

I got a Kindle Fire for Christmas and just got around to setting it up for Harris to play with. He loves it much more than I expected and some of the apps are awesome. I have heard him spelling words and sounding things out the past few days. Walker is content to let Harris play but he still wants to see what's going on. He is SUCH the little brother. Poor guy.

It's weird to me to hand an electronic device over to a four year old but he's responsible with it and is learning, so whatever.

Last thing. We went to Fiesta Farms this morning as one last outing before the baby comes. Though they liked it, they were each more interested in the huge sandbox than all the animals.  There was a peacock showing off for a good hour right by us and they each just gave it a quick glance and went back to playing with the run-down toys.
Is that not gorgeous?

But this is what they wanted to do.

Harris the hoarder stockpiled all the toys he could find, while Walker was taking them out as fast as he could. It's so funny watching their personalities come out at random times. They are going to give each other fits as they get older.

I did convince them to play with bubbles.

And Harris fed the rabbits while Walker.......didn't.

Harris rode the horse. I was surprised that Walker didn't want to but he was adamant that it wasn't going to happen. They both liked the goats once I convinced them to go in. I probably should have just left that alone. There was random pooping going on all over the place and I get enough of that at home, thanks.

Think I'm all caught up now!  Props to those of you that read alllll the way through.

But now, this is what the LORD says—
he who created you, Jacob,
he who formed you, Israel:
“Do not fear, for I have redeemed you;
I have summoned you by name; you are mine"
Isaiah 43:1

Thursday, February 9, 2012


Sometimes I miss the obvious. It finally dawned on me as I was purging all that we own tidying up that my entire role right now is to be a servant. I don't have a job outside the home anymore.  No other responsibilities. And that is a holy and beautiful thing. It's an honor to serve. No one is more like Jesus than when they're serving others and I've been given the gift to be able to focus entirely on serving those dearest to me. I think that's one of the lessons I needed to learn before #3 comes because that service is about to escalate. It's so, so easy to get bogged down in the drudgery of wiping noses and disciplining all day that I miss what a privilege it is to parent these little people and to serve my husband.

When I worked, Tom and I divided household chores much more equally. That's changed and rightfully so, but my attitude has not been great about that. It's been a paradigm shift for me to take ownership of some of these things that I used to consider "Tom's job." Please no one think I am suggesting he doesn't do anything. He does so much, lots of it without being asked, and all with a great attitude. For example, Saturday, he kept the boys quiet in the morning so I could nap, then took them out of the house for a few hours, letting me stay home and get things done uninterrupted. Then he stayed home at naptime so I could get together with girldfriends. Are you kidding??? He did that entirely on his own, not one word from me. And that kind of thing happens often, so no one get the wrong idea.  What I'm talking about are random household things that Tom used to do that it makes more sense for me to handle, since I'm the one that's in the house all day. I finally grasp now that not only is it my function in this house, it's my privledge and my honor to serve. This has completely changed my attitude as I go through the day. That's why I'm writing it down. I'll forget this in 30 seconds and need to go re-read it.

Same with the boys. I am kept busy all day long tending to their needs. And that can wear after awhile. And it still does, but remembering that it's my HONOR to serve them changes my outlook. Serving them also includes discpline, teaching them how to do things for themselves and showing them how to contribute to the household, so please don't mis-understand me. But little ones need things done for them almost constantly and understanding that this is being the hands and feet of Jesus as well impacts my attitude.

I've been looking lately for ways externally to serve people. And there's nothing wrong with that. It's good and those opportunities will present themselves when the time is right. But I think what I'm being shown now is that there is ample opportunity under my nose to be humble and serve. And this is my highest calling right now and there is nothing that is more Christ-like or biblical than that.  I can't fathom another season of life where I have the opportunity to pour out my energy on those closest to me more than I do right now.

There is scripture after scripture about putting others first. Here's just one example.

Put yourself aside, and help others get ahead. Don't be obsessed with getting your own advantage. Forget yourselves long enough to lend a helping hand. (Phil 2:3-4, The Message)

In the past, I would read something like that and think about what that looked like financially, to sacrifice to give money to someone. Or maybe how we could do something for another family, etc. Now, I read that and see that it's just as true applied in our home as anywhere else. Imitating Christ's humility starts with my actions and attitude towards my husband and children. That is such an obvious statement that I'm a little chagrined to write it. If anyone else is a slow learner, I hope it saves you some time. On some level, I knew that already but I hadn't really internalized it and embraced it yet. I think, just in the nick of time, I finally figured out what lesson I should have been learning these rough past few months. This was a humbling lesson for me to learn. It was hard to face up to how I had viewed my responsibilities versus how God views them. It was hard to admit to myself, much less on a blog, that I had been wrong in many ways. But on the other side, I feel freedom in embracing this season in a way I hadn't felt before. So, I decided to blog about it in hopes that someone else is encouraged. These days at home have eternal, kingdom impact on little hearts watching and learning.

My house is a holy place.

So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed. John 8:36

Monday, February 6, 2012

Nesting to the EXTREME.

I have never really "nested" before. I've heard people joke about it but by the end of pregnancy I've always been so tired that the last thing I wanted to do is random things around the house. I guess since I'm not working this time, it caught up to me. This is getting so out of control. I think Tom inwardly cringes every time he walks in the house, wondering what might have happened in his absence.

So far, I've taken everything out of our kitchen cabinets and pantry, went through everything, put things back. I have taken everything out of the furniture in our room. The dresser, chest of drawers, and armoire. All completely emptied, every item gone through and then put back what we kept. I took almost everything out of our closet and did the same thing. The hanging things I left but every one of them got inspected to see if it was still needed. Our poor upstairs....I ripped a big desk apart (it was falling apart on its own but needed to be removed) rearranged some of the furniture, hung pictures, organized the bookcase, and cleaned like a madwoman. I have to finish off our master bath and one spot under the stove and I think it will all be done. This has been a really strange couple of weeks, with a seriously primal drive to finish all this. Weird. I see now what people were talking about.

I didn't take before pics and I SO wish I had. Especially of the master was a disaster. For example, Tom didn't even have a laundry basket. Nor did he have adequate space to hang all his clothes so doing laundry was a guesstimate as to which piles on the floor were dirty and which just hadn't been hung up. My side was no better, I'm not trying to throw him under the bus. When there's no place for your things, it's hard to get started on putting them away. And, when clutter is everywhere, it seems pointless to pick up a few things if you don't have hours to deal with the whole big mess. But now, if something isn't in its spot, it sticks out and we know exactly where it should go. It feels so good for everything to have a spot (downstairs, anyway, upstairs is a work in progress) and to only have things that are actually useful. I'm sure there's more that can go but this was a great start.

I'm doing the one thing in, one thing out, for my clothes/shoes/bags. The absolute last thing we need is more stuff, so I'm being picky about what comes in the house. It was literally bursting at the seams with things and our house isn't too small. It should be far more space than what we need and to have it be crammed is absolutely ridiculous. The average house size in the US in 1970 was 1,400 sq feet and in 2009 it was 2,700 sq feet. WHAT?!?! And, our house is bigger even than that and we were still crammed in here. And, those are just US sized homes. Looking at the rest of the world would be even more shocking. I was so convicted that we weren't being good stewards of the resources we'd been given by having so much that we couldn't access the things we needed when we needed them, and by hoarding things we no longer needed or used. So the theme is downsizing. I want a home that's easy to keep clutter free, where we can quickly find what we're looking for, and that only houses things we enjoy and use. For example, I cleared out two full kitchen cabinets to put the boys crafty/messy toys, and we use them SO much more. Harris knows where they are and can go pull out what he wants when he wants to. Before they were scattered around and you couldn't see exactly what we had. I knew where things were but no one else did, certainly not a 4 year old.

Same with clothes. I think I've enjoyed my maternity clothes more because there was only a small selection of things. I could always see exactly what I had and I think I wore more variety, even with 1/8 of the selection, because I could see all the options. In a giant and full closet, I tend to wear the same things because I remember that they're there. I will definitely be clearing out more clothes but I need to wait until everything on my body goes back to normal. Assuming it WILL go back to normal. And don't expect the house to look much different if anyone comes over. The areas people see look pretty much the same, it's all the storage and things behind closed doors that look different. I think it's probably how the rest of the world already lives but its new for us. LOVE IT.

I let the boys "paint" in our master bath while I was on the closet rampage.

They could not have had more fun. I think they stayed in there two hours. It was not even that bad to clean up, considering how much they enjoyed it. Love, love, love those chubby little arms.

Here's Tom's sock drawer.

 I know, it doesn't really look like anything special. But before I almost couldn't put laundry away because things were bursting out of drawers and I had no idea where he kept his stuff. He had a bench on his side of the bed and everything just got piled there. And again, my stuff was every bit as bad, if not worse. It's so much more pleasant to do laundry now, knowing I'm not just adding the piles already stacked in our bedroom. 

There was such a difference walking into the bedroom where we stayed in Fredericksburg. It was just calm and peaceful to go in there. As opposed to what ours used to look like, like maybe it had been ransacked by burglars. Definitely not an oasis. Everything just feels more serene now and there's no rummaging around to find something random. I think I'll go light a candle in the calm and relaxing room and take a nap!

Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world—the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride in possessions—is not from the Father but is from the world. And the world is passing away along with its desires, but whoever does the will of God abides forever. 1 John 2:15-17

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Pregnancy-Take Two

Obviously, childbirth causes memory loss, because Tom and I decided 12 months after Harris was born that it was time to do all of this again.

Thankfully, my pregnancy with Walker was much, much easier. I was sick with him in the beginning but not nearly as bad as the first time. Once the first trimester was over, things were smooth sailing. He was born September 8th, so I was extremely pregnant in the heat and even that didn't seem too bad. I was outside in it nearly every day after work and it was fine. I'm VERY thankful that my pregnancy with him was so much easier. The Lord must have known I would need my energy for the independent little spirit that was growing inside me.

Labor was also a breeze. I was induced with him and he was born in four very easy hours. I was actually laughing when he was born because I couldn't believe it was so simple. We were out of the hospital in 24 hours and home with a sweet little baby.

I think I was able to enjoy Walker as a newborn more because I wasn't so worried about messing things up. Tom and I both knew the routine a little better and things just seemed easier, even with a toddler around. It wasn't the relaxing time of cocooning with the baby that we got with Harris but it was just as sweet in a different way.

I SO wish we had a video of Harris meeting Walker for the first time. I think he thought Walker was a baby doll, until Walker moved and made a noise. Harris gasped in complete shock. He was pretty gentle with Walker, considering a 19 month old boy isn't really known for gentle-ness.

One of my all time favorite pics of him.

And just so there's one with his eyes open, here he is at 4 months.

Enough pregnancy/labor documentation.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Pregnancy-Take One

I realized I've written tons about this pregnancy and I have nothing written down about the first two. So I'll start with Harris. And, let me preface this by saying this shouldn't be read as one long complaint. I am very thankful that it's been easy to get pregnant and we've been blessed with healthy babies. I don't take that for granted at all. This blog is a record for me and I might as well be honest on it.

The first pregnancy was hands down the hardest. Looking back, it's good that it was the worst while Tom could take care of me and we didn't have little ones to manage. My morning sickness was miserable, to the point I used to crawl on the floor sometimes because I was too dizzy to stand. I once went NINE DAYS without washing my hair. If you've had morning sickness, that's not shocking. If you haven't, it sounds disgusting, I know. But it happened. Someone told me, "I didn't know you could look so bad." And she wasn't trying to be mean, it was an honest statement. I didnt know I could look that bad either. I would come home at lunch to take a nap and sometimes I wouldn't even make it to the couch, just collapsed in the entry way, on the tile, and would sleep till my alarm went off. I was a gym rat before pregnancy and completely expected to continue that. I was totally clueless. There was absolutely no chance of "pushing through it" or any of the other things people might suggest. I was doing good just to walk down the hall at work. Thankfully it passed and the rest of the pregnancy was pretty uneventful. I never felt that great but well enough to function. We moved twice during that time, so Tom did lots of lifting while I did lots of pointing about where things should go. That is also a reason our house never felt like it was super organized. I was working and pregnant when we moved in here and things have only gotten busier since then. But that is changing. The nesting around here is OUT.OF.CONTROL.

My vision of how things would go during labor compared to how they actually went is laughable. Harris was born December 1, so it was right at the end of college football season. OU was playing in the Big 12 Championship in San Antonio that night (we had great tickets that we clearly didn't use). The SEC championship was also that day, so I thought I would just kick it in the hospital and watch that game, probably have the baby sometime in the afternoon, and be all settled in by kickoff at 8 to watch OU win the Big 12. We'd have dinner, the baby would be sleeping, and it would just be a relaxing time with family. Ignorance really is bliss.

That is not how things went down.
The morning was ok,  pitocin got going and my OB suggested I get my epidural right off the bat because there was "no need to have any pain if you're getting an epidural anyway." Her logic sounded great to me so I got my epidural about 10 am. It made me sick. I was nauseous and queasy the rest of the time. And irritable. Seriously, poor Tom. It had been a long 38 weeks for both of us. Things progressed slowly and there was threat of a c-section at one point. Aaaaaaagh! After 16 hours of nauseating labor, a c-section????? You must be joking. Thankfully, he was born at 9:53 pm. Whew!

He was perfect, 7 lbs, 8 oz, 20 inches long. In the end, the only thing that mattered was a healthy baby and we were incredibly blessed. It seems like yesterday and forever ago all at the same time. Holding him for the first time was surreal. And so was changing his diaper. It was the first diaper I ever changed and it ended up requiring a change of clothes for both of us, plus all new linens for his bassinet.

Also, our house has not been this clean since. And I think this might be the ONLY pregnancy picture of me in existence.
The night before he was born.

 I would like to point out that the hat he's wearing in that pic is a 6-9 month hat and it was snug. We sort of shoved it on there. And the chair Tom is sitting in folded out in to a bed. I remember thinking that it looked more comfortable than my bed and wanting to trade. Then I spent the night in the hospital with Harris last year. I was mistaken. That chair is more comfortable than the tile floor, probably, but nothing else.
Harris William Goolsby and Dad.

My sister took some pics when he was two weeks old. Thank you Sista! I still love them! Even at two weeks, he was a solid little guy. 

It's fun to think back on that time when we were a family of three. Tom took two weeks of work
and we just sat around and looked at Harris, basically. It was a sweet, special time. It's amazing how your priorities and view of the world change so instantaneously. And it's awesome to see your spouse change in the same ways and for the same reason. That was one sheltered newborn.

 I'll have to write about round two next.

Your eyes saw my unformed substance;
in your book were written, every one of them,
the days that were formed for me,
when as yet there was none of them.
Psalm 139:16