Sunday, July 29, 2012

Our BIG Miracle

A little over 2 weeks ago on July 12th at 10:31pm,  Connor Brent was born weighing 10lbs and about 22 inches long.  The hospital measured him at 22 3/4 inches and the doctor's office measured him at 21 1/2 inches long.  So we will just say about 22inches. :)

We feel extremely grateful that he made it here safely.  I went to the hospital at 9am on the 12th to be induced.  It was a very slow process because Connor would not drop.  It took me all day and into the night to get to a 10 and ready to deliver.  The nurses did not feel comfortable breaking my water because Connor had still not dropped and they worried about the cord coming out first.  So around 10pm my doctor made it to the hospital and broke my water.    Soon after, he discovered that Connor was in the posterior position (face up) and that was why he wouldn't drop.  After several attempts the doctor was able to turn him, but not without Connor's heart rate dropping.  I could see the look of concern on my doctor's face as he said to the nurse to get the operating room ready.  Luckily I was able to avoid the operating room.

After he was finally turned, it was time to push and it was probably one of the hardest things I have ever had to do.  I was so grateful for the epidural.  Connor's shoulder got stuck and then they had to use the vacuum to help get him out.  When he finally made it out he wasn't breathing and they rushed to give him oxygen.  The oxygen did its job and I finally heard my baby's cry.  The best sound ever and my own tears starting coming.

I could feel the many prayers on mine and Connor's behalf that he would make it here safely.  I am so grateful to have this sweet miracle here and part of our family.

                                            Holding Connor for the first time.

                                                   Daddy's turn.

                                                 Katelyn's turn.

                                Luke's turn.  He kept saying, "I can't believe I have a brother."

                                             Ashley's turn.

                                                 First family pic of all 6 of us.

                             Even though he is big, he still looks little in his daddy's arms.

                                                       Ready to go home.

                                            We are so in love with this sweet baby boy!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Kindergarten Graduation

 Katelyn had a great kindergarten year and was so excited for graduation!  They sang some cute songs and received their "diplomas".  Katelyn really got into the singing, as I knew she would, and even got a little frustrated with the boy in front of her because he was singing so loud.  That's my Katelyn! 

She also had a special part where she talked in the microphone and invited the audience to sing the National Anthem with her class.

Mrs. Barton was a great teacher!

 We are proud of our kindergarten graduate and know she is ready for 1st grade!

Friday, July 6, 2012

4 Years Old!

Ashley turned 4 on April 3rd!  She was so excited because this would be her first friend party.  She talked about it for months.  She really wanted to have a princess party, but wanted to invite the boys from her preschool class.  So we decided on a Royal Party with Princesses & Princes or Knights (whatever the boys decided) :) .
 First thing in the morning she put on her birthday hat from preschool complete with awesome bedhead.

I found a great deal to rent a bounce house for 3 hours.  This was the main entertainment, but I was surprised at how many were a little timid to jump.  Most of them warmed up to the idea after a little time.

The kids decorated their own crowns or tiaras.

Then we went on a treasure hunt where they found candy and a wand or sword at the end.

Ashley was sure spoiled with all the presents.  

 Found this cake idea for a castle on the internet and had to give it a try.  Ashley loved it! My mom was still here after watching the kids while Kevin & I were in San Francisco.  She was tons of help and actually did most of the frosting and decorating of the cake.

 Our traditional birthday picture if front of the birthday sign.

 Our 4 year old girl!

Four things about Ashley:

1. She loves to sing and dance.  Most of the songs she sings are her originals.

2. She is sassy as can be and gives her dad a run for his money when he teases her.

3. She loves to color and draw.

4. She LOVED preschool and wishes that there wasn't such a thing as summer vacation.

We love our Ashley and her zest for life!

Thursday, June 28, 2012

February & March

 Another exciting event I forgot to write about in February, was finding out that we were going to have a boy.  We were thrilled!  Luke & Katelyn were both excited to have a baby brother.  Ashley was counting on a baby sister so she was pretty sad at first.  She got over it quickly and is now very excited about having a baby brother.  

On March 23rd Kevin & I celebrated our 10th anniversary.  The next week we were able to go on a 3 day trip to San Francisco all by ourselves.  This was the first time we had been gone from our kids for more than one night.  I know, it is sad, but it just hasn't worked out before.

My mom was so wonderful to come and stay with the kids and fill in as mom and the taxi service.  I'm so grateful for her and that she made this trip possible.

We originally wanted to go to New York for our 10th anniversary, but with me being 24 weeks pregnant, I didn't want to be on a long flight and spend a lot of money when I wasn't sure how I would be feeling.  So instead we took a short flight to San Francisco.  I had been there as kid, but Kevin had never been there before.  We did do a ton of walking and I tired pretty quickly, but we still had a great time.
We stayed in a great hotel, ate yummy food, went on an hour long cruise under the Golden Gate Bridge & around Alcatraz, explored Fisherman's wharf, watched some amazing street performers, saw The Hunger Games movie, had chocolate at Ghiradelli square, and just enjoyed spending time with each other.  I hope we don't wait so long to go on another trip together.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Being 8 is GREAT!

Luke was baptized on February 4th.  He was the only one from our ward being baptized that day.  He had been looking forward to this day for a long time.  At the beginning of 2011 the primary issued a challenge for families to read the Book of Mormon together in a year.  We started off really well, but didn't quite keep up the pace to finish in a year.

Luke had set a personal goal that he wanted to finish the Book of Mormon before he was baptized.  So when he knew we wouldn't reach the goal as a family, he started reading on his own.  I would sometimes find him reading at night with a flashlight in his bed, or up early before everyone else reading on the couch.  He would spend some time on Sundays trying to catch up with his reading.  He was my example as I watched him work so hard to reach his goal.  When he got to the last chapter of the Book of Mormon he wanted to read it as a family.  I was glad he wanted us to be a part of that moment.  When we finished reading he had a huge smile on his face and said, "I kind of feel like I want to cry.  I just feel so good inside."  I explained to him that it was the Holy Ghost testifying to him that the Book of Mormon was true.  I am truly grateful for that moment to help him recognize the Spirit and to see the beginnings of his testimony.  It was a strength to my testimony as well.

 A sweet young woman in our ward took some pictures of Luke in the suit he wore.  This suit barely fit him, but we really wanted him to wear it because it is the same suit that all 5 of my brothers wore on their baptism days.  Luke was a good sport and endured a snug waistband. :)


We were so grateful to have Grandma Hutchings and Grandma & Grandpa Cottrell come from Utah.



I wish I would have taken more pictures after the baptism of those that attended.  We appreciated all the support!  Luke invited a kid from his school class and it was a wonderful surprise to see the boy and his mom at the baptism.  That's my little missionary!

I can't believe my oldest is 8.  Where does the time go?  I'm not sure how to answer that question because the time has flown by way too fast for my liking.  Even though it is hard to see him grow up, I am proud of him and the choices he is making. 

Birthday Continued

Luke's actual birthday was on January 16th which ended up being a day off of school.  So we met up at the park with his cousins to have lunch and play.  Luke always enjoys hanging out with his boy cousins. :)             

He received his presents from us which included a baseball glove, baseball, a large Harry Potter lego set, and his new Cub Scout shirt.

Instead of cake he wanted a donut "cake".  I was happy to oblige after working so hard on his birthday party.  The donut "cake" is the way to go.

8 things about Luke:

1. He loves to learn and remembers what he learns so easily.

2. He really enjoys reading.  When he is into a book, the only thing he wants to do is read.

3. His favorite subject in school is science.

4.  He is not afraid to stand up for what is right.  He is such a good example to me.

5.  He loves to tease his sisters, but he is also so good to them.

6.  He hates running errands.

7.  Still a very picky eater, but is doing much better at trying new foods.

8.  His favorite game to play during recess is a game called Catch it.  Almost everyday I get a report about Catch It and whether or not he had a good day or bad day playing.  I love his excitement!

I am so grateful Luke was sent to our family first.  He is such a good example to his sisters and strives to choose the right.  We love our Luke!

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Celebrating Harry Potter Style

On January 16th, Luke turned 8 years old.  After going to his cousin's Harry Potter themed birthday party in December, Luke knew that he wanted the same theme.  He had just started reading the books and was very excited about it!  This was his year to have a big friend party so we went all out.  I haven't read the books (I've tried, just can't get into them.), but Kevin had read them.  So thanks to Luke, Kevin, pinterest, & blogs I was able to come up with a Harry Potter party.

The prep work:

Sorting Hat

Take Home Bag- they also put some the creatures they found on the magical creature hunt in their bags (plastic frogs, snakes, dragons, lizards, etc.)

The boys were split into these two schools & wore this badge to represent their school.

Kevin made wands out of dowels and made each one a little different. I just told them to make them all the same, but he went above and beyond. 

The cupcakes
This was supposed to represent the train depot at Platform 9 3/4. (It was a stretch).  They walked through the "red brick wall" to enter the party. 
             The Party:                                     
When the boys first came into the party they received their wands and decorated them with markers.  Then we used the sorting hat to put each boy in either Gryffindor or Slytherin.  We used a baby monitor in the hat and Kevin was in the other room talking.  The boys thought it was cool to have the hat "talk".

Receiving wand and magic instructions.

Sorting & counting their creatures they found on the magical creature hunt.

Potions class.  Kevin did such a great job!  He really got into and made sure the boys said the "magic words" & used their wands to make the potions work.  I just wish we would have had a costume for him to make it seem more real. :)

Quidditch-  I got the idea for the Quidditch goals on a blog.  We decided to forgo broom sticks knowing they would be more dangerous than fun.  The boys loved this game and had so much fun playing Gryffindor vs. Slytherin.

Luke's friends sure spoiled him with some great gifts.  Nerf guns, Legos, remote control car and more.  This was one happy 8 year old boy!