last baby

We are saying that this is our last baby.  During the first trimester, when I was so sick, and still nursing Kate, and trying to keep up with everything that was swirling around me, this little fact was at times felt like my one silver lining. 
When I watched my belly get full and round, and the rest of me get full and round as well...When I stored away the pants and skirts that bear the mark of my real size, (the ones that I had just started to be able to wear after baby #2), I told myself that after this baby my body would be mine again---no more transitional clothes and elastic waistbands.  This made me feel good, like I would soon reclaim something that had been lost for what has felt like a long time.

I have asked my husband We are stopping at three, right??  You feel good about three, right?? so many times that I can literally see his brain reverting to auto-pilot-robot mode when he gives me his answer, which is always some variation of Yes.  When he has the energy to to elaborate on his reply, it is usually an amused laugh and then after I ask him why are you laughing!??  His reply is a I just think this is funny, because I mean haven't we already decided this like a million times?!!! 

Which we have.  But here is the thing: I really don't want to be pregnant again (and three has always felt right for us), but at the same time I always want to be pregnant.  Pregnancy has its downsides, but to be the literal home of a perfect sweet innocent being is more than a miracle.  Having a newborn is exhausting and often emotional, but is also like waking up to Christmas morning over and over.....and over and over and over......

I know I am not meant to be a Dugger-type whipping up tator tot casserole to a crew of twenty, but there is a part of me that never wants this all to end.......
I often look forward to the time when all my children are in school and I can start to have a bit of career, but then I realize that means I won't have a toddling child or a soft squishy baby and it makes me want to freeze time.

Through the pregnancies of my three children, and the birth of two, so much about myself and how I think about things has been transformed.

Instead of viewing labor and birth as an ill-designed painful process, I now see it as an all-powerful initiation rite where a new mother is born right along-side her new baby.
This time around I cannot wait to be chubby and soft, sitting on the couch, nursing and burping and staring at my baby.

Really I can't wait to be a mother all over again.


a california christmas

 This pregnancy has been challenging.  When I haven't been sick (which has felt like most of it) I have just wanted to sleep. Like sleep forever.  But with two young children that usually nap at different times...well its just not happening.
But you know what makes everything better??  Cute maternity photos.  And thanks to my sister and our friend Maria Torres I got some over the holiday.  Now when I look back I will remember the beauty and miracle of this pregnancy, and not just me wanting to it be over already.

                                 Cute pictures of your kids also help. 

The weather over Christmas was amazing.  We got to spend time at the beach and Zachary and Roan even went swimming.  My sister bought Roan a wetsuit for Christmas, which turned out to be a good buy; Zachary got to wear my old wetsuit from the 80s.  He didn't seem to mind.

Zachary loves Roan.  He is always saying "my best friend Roan......." or "Roan be there????"  They play like my older sister and I used to play:  Roan is the boss (my sister) and Zachary is happy to go along with all the games and their oh so important rules.


                      Traveling with kids is never fun, but seeing family is.  Cheers to a great 2014!