Wednesday, June 15, 2011

This Year's Home School Plans!

We are enjoying our summer and watching Kerrigan grow WAY too fast but while we have fun this summer, I'm busy preparing for our next year of homeschooling (something I admit I enjoy WAY too much and get a bit too excited doing lol).

Kerrigan is 4mo old here

After a lot of research, prayer, talking with other parents, and attending a homeschool convention, we have decided to use My Father's World next year. We are SO excited about it. I got to get my hands on it and look at some of the completed projects families had on display at a curriculum fair this spring and fell in love.

The younger kids (2nd, 3rd, and 6th) will be studying the Middle Ages (Rome - Reformation). I'm so excited to explore castles and knights with my kids! We even get to construct a castle this year as we learn and many more things! and Karly will be doing MFW Ancients High School for her 9th grade year.

Karson - Singapore U.S. Edition for 3rd
Kolton - Singapore U.S. Edition (although I may switch him to Math U See if this doesn't fit him well) for 2nd
Karaline - Math U See Zeta
Karly - Art of Problem Solving Algebra 1 which she has already started and may be finished with before fall. If she is, we will move on to Algebra 2.

Language Arts:
Kolton - Primary Language Lessons, Spelling by Sound and Structure
Karson - Primary Language Lessons, Spelling Power, & Cursive Connections
Karaline - Intermediate Language Lessons, Writing Strands, and Spelling Power
Karly - combined into her MFW literature and history studies

The younger 3 will have science built in the MFW curriculum (Apologia Astronomy and Human Biology)

Karly will be studying BOTH Chemistry (Apologia) and Biology (Apologia)

As far as extracurriculars, we are doing the weekly homeschool co-op which we love. I'm teaching 4th-6th grade Botany (apologia) and assisting in high school anatomy for co-op. Karly is playing volleyball for the homeschool team and also starting her 8th year of classical ballet. Karaline will be playing soccer and participating in Heritage Girls (a Christian Girls Scouts). Karson and Kolton will both be doing the soccer and flag football still as well as Upward basketball in the winter.

Kollin, although not homeschooled, will be playing for the high school marching band again this year. He has moved up the percussion totem pole to snare drum. :) That and year round soccer for him and a full load of sophomore honors/AP classes as well...whew!

The most recent picture of the whole Cash crew taken on Easter. :)
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Saturday, April 16, 2011

One of the things I didn't know 5yrs ago

When we started the adoption process for the first time almost 5 years ago, I thought if we did our research (and BOY did I!), picked a great agency, flew through the adoption process,picked the right flights, had plenty of hairbows (LOL), and showered Kemry with love, life for her would be no different than if she had been born into our family. Sure I knew some kids had scars and problems bonding, but that was OLDER kids, right? Not babies. And kids from orphanages, not kids from loving foster homes! So or baby would come home at just a few months old and not even notice anything had changed. BOY WERE WE NAIVE!!!!!! I had heard of attachment issues and RAD, but knew that most kids with those issues were severely abused before adoption and older. I skimmed a few online articles and websites on the subject, but that was the extent of my "adopted kid issues" training and basically all of those backed up what I thought- babies don't remember the loss of their first mother and adjust without any problems. Kemry came home to us at 7mo old and we immediately knew these people were all quacks!!!! She grieved and grieved HARD. Only, the experts, including pediatricians, refused to believe her issues were adoption related because she came to us at such an early age. She didn't like that her perfect little world had been turned upside down. She wasn't waiting on us to come get her like we were on our side. Adoption was very much more about US at that point than her. I feel God used Kemry to show us that we didn't have to adopt one of those "older harder kids" to get a child with deep scars from "just" loosing a mom. So for 2 years, she continued to protest us being her new mommy and daddy. She wanted us to hold her but then didn't want us. We weren't what she wanted but she knew she wanted and needed someone. At this point I started reading everything I could get myhands on about attachment and bonding. most books were written about the older child because, well ya know, "babies don't have those issues". The more I learned and talked to other parents the more I realized they do, but they are often ignored as being related to adoption. There's a saying that it takes a child being in their new family the same amount of time they were without their family to get past the grieving and to bond. I myself have said this 100 times at least without putting a lot of thought into it until now. Suddenly it occurred to me it's such an incredibly OVER simplified way of thinking of the lifelong journey many adoptees take to accept and deal with their story. For some they may not need to put a lot of thought into it and may adjust well from day one. For others, that deep sense of loss will stick with them forever.

She finally came to trust us and deeply bond with us, but it's obvious the scars from the "miracle of adoption" are still there and may always be. Today she is a very happy little girl for the most part and adores us as we do her. It's so easy to forget she is adopted because she is so deeply a part of our family. I sometimes "forget" that I didn't birth her. Even though she is a well adjusted little girl who loves her family smiles all the time, and doesn't seem to have a single need in the world, she still hurts because loosing what she lost in her first 7mo of life (her birth mother she was DEEPLY bonded to from conception as well as a foster mother who had loved her for 7mo) is traumatic.

The other night she woke up in the middle of the night with a terrible night terror. Instead of being afraid (terror), it was deep intense sadness. She cried so super hard and I couldn't console her. Finally she woke up from it and I asked her what was making her sad. She said with huge tears rolling down her cheeks, "I miss my mommy." I knew she didn't mean me even though she and I are very close and bonded. I knew it was something much deeper than I could fulfill. The bond between a mother and her baby already at BIRTH is DEEP. Loosing that is a huge deal, even if the baby goes straight home from the hospital with the adoptive parents, they know. They know they aren't with the same person they were with for 9 mo. Even in the perfect adoption situation, something terrible had to happen for adoption to be needed. Going into this I thought love was all these children needed, but while they of course NEED love, that's by far not going to erase what they have been through. Of course we don't spend every day talking about everything that happened to our children for them to become orphans, but we don't pretend it hasn't affected them either. Almost 5yrs later, we are still learning and growing on this journey to provide all we can for our children. There's SO much to know and even the experts still have so much to learn. Most of what I am learning about my children I have had to get from little bits of information from naturapaths, neurologists, psychiatrists, other parents, child development experts, etc. Not one person has all the answers and not one book can cover all the dynamics of what they are dealing with. And to think I once thought LOVE IS ALL THEY NEED.

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Friday, March 18, 2011

Crunchy Couture

A friend of mine sells adorable tie dye shirts so Kerrigan just HAD to have one. How cute is she modeling Crunchy Couture? I think she may keep her blue eyes. They seem to just get brighter and lighter. That would give us 3 kids with blue eyes and 4 with brown eyes. :) She has turned into the BEST baby. Seriously I have to pinch myself because it feels like a dream come true. I know things could change at any given moment, lol, but she is so happy and smiles or "talks" with the sweetest girly voice NONSTOP. :)

John also started a new job this week. It has been a huge change (and a reality check for me) with him going from an extremely flexible schedule with lots of work at home days to being 2hrs away from 5am-6pm every day with practically no access to him. He was home a lot before to help with pick ups and drop offs if I needed it, but I'm on my own again. ACK! :) He loves it though. He was actually offered this position by one of his clients he had with his former job. It is a very nice promotion with a very secure company. The most important part, though, is this is a very family oriented group to work with. He didn't feel that way with his last company. District meetings were more like frat parties. Men and women employees sharing rental houses and cabins mixed with lots and lots of drinking. John has never been a drinker or a party guy and is a little old fashioned in his belief that women and men shouldn't share rental cabins without their spouse (and I have to say I TOTALLY agree lol). Anyway, I am thrilled to say the least he is now with a family oriented Christian company. Oh yeah, I brought this up to comment on how TIRED I am now that I'm back to fulltime kid care. I have no idea how single mommies do it. I'm POOPED! And spring 'stuff' is just starting too with sports and birthdays and soccer x 5 of our kids. I need a stunt double. ;)
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Thursday, March 10, 2011

Dairy Allergy?

Kerrigan broke out in a rash all over her face, neck, and back. At first we thought it was the detergent, but it didn't seem to be that. We had started a probiotic at the same time she broke out so we took her off and the rash started to go away. Then I drank a frappe (I don't get a lot of dairy otherwise, sadly) and boom, it came back. So I cut out dairy and her rash is almost completely gone. How will I live without dairy?? It's in everything! Well, everything GOOD. :) This is a whole new world for me, but I'm determined to stick it through.
Here's her sweet little face, rash and all
We LOVE days when we can get these two together.

How KISSABLE are those lips??? Oh my word, it's all I can do to not smooch on her all day long!
I have been "bloglecting" my other kiddos since Kerrigan arrived.:) This was on my birthday (march 2) which is why they are all posing so happily. They can't say no to me on my birthday can they? LOL
Homeschooling is starting to get back to normal too. :) In science this week the little boys were learning about the insect's body parts. Well any chance to play with play doh brings all the kids out so they all ended up making their own insect. lol
Homeschool science can make the kitchen super messy!
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Monday, March 07, 2011

One Thousand Gifts

This book had been recommended to me by lots of different people. I ordered it (it doesn't take much to convince me to order a book with my Amazon Prime addiction) and sat on it for quite a while. I procrastinated reading it because it wasn't something I was really interested in since Kerrigan was born. Instead I was researching cloth diapers and baby clothes and vaccinations and all the things that are new since I had a baby last. On Saturday, I was at an all day ballet event with Karly (and Kerrigan) which left me sitting in the dressing room for hours. It was the only book in my diaper bag so I picked it up and started reading. WOW!!!!!! First of all, I cried through the first two chapters. In public. Not pretty. lol I almost quit reading this book before I had finished the first 2 chapters because I knew I couldn't handle the rest of the book if it continued to rip my heart like that. I'm glad I pushed through it. WOW this book is fabulous!!!! It's definitely a must read for anyone! It is definitely Christian based, but really a good tool to improve anyone's life outlook.

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Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Kerrigan Elizabeth's Birth Story

I had been experiencing prodromal labor for 3-4weeks which was just taunting me because my OB had told me I wasn't allowed to go past 40 weeks if I wanted an intervention free vba2c (vaginal birth after 2 c-sections). I had done everything possible to naturally speed things along...from spicy foods to acupuncture, a chiro adjustment, and Baby Come Out track from Hypnobabies, etc. Nothing worked beyond just a few hours of contractions. She was also posterior and I knew that could cause weeks of pre-labor because her head wasn't putting pressure in the right spot to get me dilating. I was trying to encourage her to turn. I was so desperate because I was once again in the same situation I was in with my Karson (first baby was a c-section, 2 & 3 were VBACs and #4 was another c-section). I had a clock ticking with him...had to have him by 39 weeks without being induced or it would be a repeat c-section. Labor never happened on it's own with him by 39w so he became my 2nd c-section which has caused me so much more trouble finding anyone who would allow me to vbac with this pregnancy. My ob (that I LOVE) this time had given me until 40 weeks to go on my own. She wouldn't induce (which I agree with) but wouldn't let me go past 40 weeks either. Monday (I was 39 weeks 3 days), Kasey's water broke (my sister)in the middle of a TERRIBLE snow/ice storm and my sweet nephew was born 3 weeks early. I was OVERJOYED but naturally a little upset with my own body because I had tried everything to avoid a c-section and nothing was happening. Wednesday, 2 days before my duedate and that all important 40 week appt, I had nothing all day to indicate birthing day for the first time in weeks. No contractions, nothing. I cried and cried because my nephew was here and the roads were too bad for me to get to the hospital to see him. My sister was able to make it to my parent's house the day they left the hospital and nothing was going to stop me from getting there to see him. I held him for at least 2hrs and I fell head over heels in LOVE. Every maternal instinct in my body went crazy!!!! I truly feel, now, that this was jump starting my system.

Went to bed about 11 that night and slept well all night, but woke up to pressure waves at 6am and pink watery "show". This was quite the red flag for me. They were painless, weren't terribly strong and only every 18-20min apart but they were different. I had painful contractions with prodromal labor but these gave me the perfect feeling/mental image of a bearing down pressure with no pain. I asked John to stick around (my inductions were fast labors) and just work from home for a while just to see which way they were going to go. By lunchtime, they really weren't much stronger although they were a bit closer and not letting up no matter what I did. John really needed to go to work just for a bit so I told him to go on. While he was getting ready to leave though, they suddenly jumped to about 10-12min apart and increased in intensity and I asked him again to stay home. In the past few weeks of prodromal labor, I would be sure it was the real thing but the minute John left for work, everything would stop. I was sure it was from my body being "afraid" to labor with him gone, so I begged him just to stay home this time so my contractions didn't stop again (LOL this sounds silly looking back but I was a woman on the edge at that point lol). By 4pm I was certain it was baby time but it was going so slow. They were still about 10-12min apart but nothing was stopping them like activity, rest, showering, drinking water, etc. During this time I alternated between listening to my Hypnobabies tracks while sitting on my birth ball and pacing around the house. I wanted to get on with my day as usual but I had so much anxiety (noise and little things the kids did agitated me more than usual) I felt I needed to stay in my room and keep things as calm as possible while John took care of the kids.

At 5pm I started feeling some really strange sensations around my c-section scar. It felt like her head was popping back up out of the pelvis during each pressure wave and I got afraid. As much as I wanted a vbac, keeping my baby healthy and safe was #1 and I knew the ruptures had to happen to SOMEBODY and didn't want that somebody to be me. I was 45 min from the hospital and didn't want to risk it, so I called my ob. I knew I was probably sabotaging my vbac and drug-free hypnobabies birth if I went in to the hospital too early. As I predicted, she brought me in to L&D. The second we parked in the parking lot about 6pm, my contractions picked up to about 6-8min apart or so after hours of being stuck at a 10-12min apart phase. Got inside and was hooked up to the monitors just to make sure the baby was fine and there was no rupture. Everything looked GREAT! YEAAAA!!! Now to decide what to do from there. I was still only dilated to 2cm and 50% effaced which is what I was the week prior at my 39 week appt (and 38 week appt), so no one believed I was in "real" labor. I was also still feeling perfectly fine with a tiny bit of focusing through my contractions. Everyone was SO respectful and let me focus in quiet during each contraction and all the nurses were on board with my Hypnobabies requests and even excited about it. We agreed that going home would be a waste of time because my goal was to head into L&D at 6min apart anyway. My ob told me just to stay overnight on 24hr observation. We got a nice quiet room away from everyone else who was having their babies because I'm sure they didn't want to be bothered by us on a busy night just as much as we didn't want to be bothered by them. They took me off the monitors and encouraged me to do whatever I wanted to encourage labor or just rest. We got to a room about 7 or so and just watched tv (The Office and our other Thurs night shows...woohoo), timed contractions, talked, and walked. It really felt like a fun date night with John! I sat on the birthing ball quite a bit and just walked and drank (yummy slushies and my pregnancy fav, orange crush)and ate...I had no restrictions at all. The contractions quickly got more and more intense and were already about 4min apart. From 7-11:30 no one came in our room at all and I didn't have to deal with any monitoring. The contractions were just intense pressure with no pain although they did take a bit more focusing and strength to relax instead of tensing up. At one point (between 10-10:30ish) I sat for 30-45 min on the birth ball with my head on the bed in front of me listening to my hypnobabies tracks. I slept through most of it (or was in deep hypnosis from Hypnobabies, I could never really tell the difference) and woke up feeling sick on my stomach just a bit. I think at this point is when labor really kicked in and I started dilating fast.

When she came in at 11:30pm just to hook me up for 15 min of monitoring, she noticed I seemed to have to focus more through the contractions than I had been before (and I had my hypnobabies playing on my ipod to help me focus more at that point) and asked if she could check me. I was 6/7cm and she nearly fell through the floor. this was totally a God thing that they thought all that time I wasn't in labor because I was able to just be left alone with no restrictions just like I had prayed for. She called the doctor at home and started trying to get me admitted as a "labor patient" instead of just observation. I was ready! I felt such a HUGE exhilarating rush of energy and determination at that point. Almost instantly the anesthesiologist showed up (very creepy like she sensed my progress and needed to come spread drugs..the nurses had no time to go get her so I don't get how she knew). She looked like the mean principal from the movie Matilda and even though we were trying to joke with her she had no smiles. Looking back, that was another way God was helping me get the natural childbirth I had prayed for. She terrified me and I just wanted her out of the room because I sensed such bad vibes from her. I stayed in my BOP (Bubble of Peace....a Hypnobabies tactic to help block out negativity which could cause you to feel pain) and was EASILY and CONFIDENTLY able to smile and tell her that we wouldn't be needing her services because I was feeling no pain. No one could believe it. They kept saying over and over how calm and "easy" I was for them. At this point they gave me the IV lock but didn't hook the iv up. About 1am they checked me again and I was only to an 8. I lost a lot of wind in my sails because I thought for sure she would be there by then (I went from 7-delivery in 45 min with my other two VBACs but they were induced). Now that I look back, I cannot believe I didn't just trust God. Everything that was happening was what I had prayed for. I prayed that my labor would go just fast enough that I wouldn't tired completely out yet slow enough that it wasn't too much for me to endure.

By 1:45ish I was just a 9 and baby was still high (and possibly still posterior). She said I was EXTREMELY stretchy and if I wanted to start pushing I could but I declined. At that point I felt like my hypnobabies went out the window and I felt pain for the first time in the whole process. I couldn't focus, I felt tremendous pain, and I couldn't figure out how to get back to the peaceful place I had before. I know it was because suddenly we were being "bothered" by other people (although they were very respectful, them being there took away so much of my focus because I wanted to be polite and kind). I just wanted it all over at that point. I felt like I was quickly loosing control at that point. That's also when I started begging for an epidural. Luckily my wonderful husband and amazing nurse both knew that's not really what I wanted and knew I was SO close even though I couldn't realize that. I knew by the time they got my epidural to me and in me it would all be over, but I thought I needed something right THEN and didn't care what it was. lol My wishes changed with each minute I wanted John touching me, the next I was yelling at him for it (and then immediately apologizing for it making him laugh that I felt that was necessary). Up until that point standing and swaying or bending over the bed was the most comfortable position, but not anymore. I just wanted in the bed on my left side holding onto the bed rails with my face buried in the railing through each contraction. My nurse was trying to encourage me to change positions and I refused to listen to anyone. John put my "Pushing Baby Out" Hypnobabies track on my ipod and put my ear buds in but I was too unfocused to listen or even "hear" anything. I just remember being annoyed that I couldn't hear what everyone was saying to me but not aware enough to take my earbuds out. LOL At that point my body was already bearing down and trying to push on it's own and I hated that. I had always heard that the pushing made the pain feel much better in a relief sort of way but it didn't so much for me. It reminded me of that uncontrollable feeling you get when you are throwing up. You know it's going to hurt and feel terrible but your body does it anyway. I didn't like not being in control of that. One thing that helped during this part was praying out loud and laying all my heart to God. At times I got nervous about her heart rate dropping and I would ask the Lord during those contractions just to keep her safe because I would gladly take the discomfort if He would protect her. Those were my easiest contractions even though I wasn't asking for them to be easy. Knowing I was doing it for her made them feel like nothing. I had totally forgotten about the "ahhh" to breathe the baby out we were taught in hypnobabies. I kept apologizing for being "out of control" and they kept saying, "Are you kidding? You are more in control than many women with epidurals!" I didn't feel that way though at all! I felt like I was a raving lunatic, but it helped that everyone was still amazed at my weakest moment at how calm and relaxed I was.

At 2:15am my ob was finally there, checked me, and said I was complete but baby's head was still at a -1. As soon as she walked in I said, "I'm SO SORRY I got you out of bed in the middle of the night!" LOL I was SO apologetic to everyone for some reason. My water hadn't broken yet, so she asked if she could break it. I said absolutely NOT because I knew it would make the pain worse. She said that it very well could make it worse for a little bit but it would go faster. I said I didn't care, I knew I couldn't handle any more pain than what I already had and with her head still being so high I knew it could be a long pushing phase. Maybe 10 seconds later I asked her if she promised it would make the baby come faster (LOL) and she said yes. I said ok. They waited until between a contraction and broke my water at 2:23am. Fluid shot out like a rocket soaking my ob and everyone laughed. She went to get booties on her shoes while the nurses were to break the bed down and get me ready to meet my baby. With the next contraction, they said I could push. With that first contraction I pushed like my life was ending if I didn't get that baby out...yes completely opposite what I had planned which was to "breathe" the baby out. Suddenly it felt as if someone dropped a bowling ball in my pelvis from several feet above. A HUGE heavy bone bending weight/pressure was felt in my pelvis, tailbone, and hips. I felt the head come out in a very sharp stinging, burning, pressure sensation and them telling me to stop pushing with lots of commotion trying to hurry and get the doctor back in there but I didn't listen. I just couldn't stop letting her be half way in and half way out with that flesh ripping/stinging feeling. She was born in that one push (with one loud beastmaster scream from me that John says wasn't loud at all I just thought it was lol) at 2:25am, 2 minutes after the ob broke my water. She was partially caught by nurses. My ob walked in just as this happened. LOL The first thing she said (as the nurse was yelling out the time of birth) was "I told you it would be faster!" LOLOL She climbed up on the bed to stitch me up so I wouldn't have to be bothered. She peed on the nurses (something we have since learned is her life's mission, to pee on everyone coming and going lol) and I was so worried because she looked so little to me compared to my other babies. They immediately put her in my gown to warm her up and let me nurse while they did all they needed to do as far as exams through the collar of my gown. lol Never had this with my other babies so it was AMAZING! Her apgar was 8/9 and she looked so healthy and alert as was I! She stayed there nursing for over an hour. They did her exam and bath right beside my bed about 5am then gave her back to me. It was simply an amazing experience. I KNOW I couldn't have done it without hypnobabies, my amazing husband/coach, and the Lord carrying me through.

Kerrigan Elizabeth was born at 2:25am weighing 6lb13oz on 1.14.11 just about 8 hours before the appointment where I was going to have to discuss c-section or other interventions to get her here. Just in the nick of time, whew! I have felt AMAZING and she has been BY FAR the most alert and content baby I have ever been around. Also, I had episiotomies with my other two VBACs and they were very painful and took a long time to heal. With my tear have had NO pain at all! It feels like I never even pushed a baby out. LOL It has been by far the best childbirth of my 5. If I am ever blessed again to have another child, I will definitely use Hypnobabies again and hopefully correct the ending next time.

Oh and p.s. when my ob came back in to see me the next evening she said as she was leaving, "Aren't you glad you didn't just go with the repeat c-section?" (I had fought and fought for a vbac for 9mo lol)

Kerrigan & Avry at 3 weeks old

Avry was born at the beginning of the snowstorm, Kerrigan at the end - 4 days apart :)

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Baby Smiles and Ballerinas

Kerrigan started melting us with her baby smiles this past week. Oh my goodness, we could eat her up when she shows those sweet gums. She just turned 4 weeks old this weekend..where does the time go?!?!?! Oh and the chunker is 10lb already bringing her weight gain up to 3.5lb since birth.
We have started a loose homeschooling schedule. Luckily we were a bit ahead before little bit came along and could take some time off. :) Co-op started last week and that got us motivated. :) Karson is taking Spanish, Magic School Bus, and Art. Kolton is taking Community Helpers, Magic Tree House, and Chorus. Karaline is taking IEW Writing, Piano by Ear, and Jonathan Park Science. Karly is taking US Government, Chemistry, and Home Management (hoping she can take over...LOL). They LOVE it! They are also in several after co-op clubs (princess club, lego club, etc)

We have also started talking about the vehicle situation. Our plan was to just take 2 cars since Kollin will be driving in the fall, but we are already seeing how inconvenient this is. We have 2 cars that seat 8 each - my Honda minivan and John's Saturn Outlook. Several times though in the past couple weeks, we have just wanted to jump in the car and go somewhere as a family, even just to my parents' house or riding around. So we are in the market for a big ole van. :) We could fit all of us in a Surburban or Excursion with an extra bench seat added to the back, but John is on this 12 passenger kick. He has been researching all the options and the pricing of those. I always said I would never drive one of those but seeing how excited he is about it makes me a little excited too. :) It's for our family and the space will make everyone much happier on trips. I would hate to think that the tightness of our vehicle prevented our kids with a bit bigger "personal space" from wanting to go places with us and we have started to see that with our older two. Family time is so important to us. So watch for me on the road...I'll look like a school bus driver and will most likely be taking out every curb and traffic sign around. ;)
Kerrigan's first bath!!!!!!!!!

We have also taken CRUNCHY to the next step as well going to cloth diapers!!! :) I had no idea how ADORABLE these things could be! :) Kerrigan has had terrible rash issues and we are finding she is quite sensitive to a lot of things I eat and products (even Mylicon broke her cheek out where a drop was on her face). Here she is modeling her adorable cloth diapers we are borrowing from our friends.
And don't let her sleeping in the swing fool you, this was the only time she has ever been in it and it was only long enough to take these pictures since she matched the swing. LOL This girl is ALWAYS in someone's arms or the sling/wrap.

The cuteness never ENDS (no pun intended) lol

How lucky is this girl to have 3 handsome brothers to watch out for her (the 3rd one has had a cold and can't be around her right now :( )

Three MUST HAVE baby products -a pouch sling (khaki below), a baby wrap (brown/purple/green below), and the Swaddle Me thingy (the baby straight jacket).
I look terrible here (no makeup, hair not fixed) but I AM in regular jeans here...WOOOOHOOOOO BUTTONS and ZIPPERS rock!
I'm such a huge Dr Sears/Dr Purvis attachment parenting FAN it's ridiculous ...breastfeeding on demand, baby wearing, selective vaxing, co-sleeping, delaying solids, etc! I wouldn't have it any other way. :) We have done this with all our kids, but I will admit it's easier with bio children. Our adopted kids need it just as much, but they struggle to accept it as easily as our bio children do. Some day I'll expand on all these issues. :)
We also just finished Karly's 7th ballet production with our ballet company and Kemry's first! Kemry was the most adorable little firefly in her 30 second stage appearance. LOL This year they did Cinderella and of course had a Christian theme. Karly really enjoyed it and it was a beautiful, as always, production. Kerrigan was a week old at opening night so I didn't get to spend anywhere near as much time with it as I usually do.
Kemry had gone home with my mom when this picture was taken. Kerrigan hung out in the wrap through the show.
Kemry and Karly...our two ballerinas
Karly at the ball getting recognized by the prince. :)
Karly (center) dancing as a trillium fairy in the corps de ballet.
A village dancer (Karly's in purple)
And here's our little firefly! Karly (in purple) mourning the death of Cinderella's mother.
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