Ansley is 20 months old! I can't believe that in 4 months she will be two. I haven't posted monthly about her lately because life seems to be a whirlwind right now. She is SO active and keeps me very busy. Here's what she's up to these days: -She is 26.6 lbs and I'm not sure of her height, but she's very tall for her age. She wears size 2T since 24 month clothing is too short. -She has tons of teeth, but is working on the top and bottom incisors (I think that's what they're called). -Her vocabulary totally amazes me. I can tell her the word for something once and she will remember days later. She loves to point at everything around her and tell me their names. -Ansley loves baby dolls. I love watching her carry, rock, sing to, and share her drink with them. She's going to be such a great big sister. -I'm afraid we've been in the terrible two's for several months now. She knows how to throw a good fit, and her favorite time to do it is when we're in the middle of a store and she will lay on the floor and kick and scream. -But, my little girl also has such a sweet side most of the time. She loves to kiss and hug and still wants to rock and cuddle all the time. And she absolutely adores her daddy. She can hear the garage door open and runs to the door to greet him. -Her favorite things to play with are still books. We have them from one end of the house to the other. -You should see her pray. It's the sweetest thing I've ever seen. She will bow her head so far it's almost in her plate, closes her eyes, and it perfectly quiet as we pray. She doesn't say amen yet, but smiles and cheers when it's over. -This spring will bring Ansley lots of changes. She's going to move to a big girl bed in her new room so her sister can have her room and crib. And, I'm pretty sure we're going to start potty training. I still need to do a little research about how to do it, but I really think she'll be ready soon. I'd love to try to get rid of the pacifier, but we'll probably wait a few months to get through these other changes. -She has become so picky about food. I cannot get her to eat meat, so the only protein I can get in her is from scrambled eggs and peanut butter.
She is such a precious blessing to us. I get so tired sometimes and think I need a little break, but as soon as she's not around I miss her terribly. I really just can't get enough of her.
As for baby #2, we found out a few weeks ago that we're having another baby girl. Her name will be Heidi Reese and the name was chosen simply because we love the name. Even though Jeff is usually not opinionated about anything, he really is about the names of his babies. So, here's a little about Heidi: -I'm 20 weeks -She moves a lot and makes big movements. I hardly feel little flutters, but more like she's kicking and rolling and I can feel hard pointy hands, feet, knees and elbows. I'm a little nervous that I may have another active little girl. I just remind myself that God won't give me anything I can't handle! -She weighed about 9 oz at our 18 week appointment. -Although she measured one day behind at our last appointment, my doctor said that her due date is still April 25. -Everything looked great with her and she seems to be perfectly healthy
We're so excited about Ansley having a little sister. I have a wonderful relationship with my sister and had always hoped Ansley would get to have the same someday. Something I think of often is helping my daughters pick out their wedding dresses and seeing them in each other's weddings. I can't wait to let them have slumber parties and everything else that comes with little girls.
Unfortunately, we weren't given any good photos of our last ultrasound to show off our sweet baby girl. Hopefully we'll get some in a couple of months.
Some of our sweet friends, Stephen and Wynne, came to visit a couple of weeks ago for the A&M game. They drive in every year from their home in Midland and we really enjoy the time we get to spend with them. Wynne does some amazing photography and was able to get some gorgeous pictures of Ansley at the George Bush Library. Since Ansley loves flowers, it was the perfect place. She was one happy girl, but we were all a little concerned that we may get in trouble for her picking the flowers. And I learned later on that Barbara Bush had just been at the pond walking her dog before we got there. Too bad...that would have been an awesome picture!
I chose a few of my favorites, but you can see more on Wynne's blog here.
This morning Ansley and I headed outside to check the mail. It was pretty quiet until I heard a loud ROAR. I had no idea what in the world could make a sound like that and when I turned and looked up, this is what we saw:
This picture is taken from our backyard after we had already watched it for several minutes and run into the house to get the camera. It actually flew right over us and was so close that I could hear the two men in it talking. The loud roar we heard was the fire and it scared Ansley. She was absolutely amazed by the huge beautiful balloon and kept pointing and talking about it. What a random thing to see flying over your house on a Sunday morning! I just wish Ansley was old enough to remember it.
This post has been a long time coming. I've wanted to write about my experiences over the past three months several times, but somehow I haven't mustered the strength until now. Maybe it has a little to do with the good news we got this morning. More on that in a little while. First I have to explain the events leading up to it.
At the beginning of May, Jeff and I found out we were pregnant with our second baby and were so excited. But, even from the beginning I had a strange feeling about the pregnancy. I just couldn't convince myself that it was real. I couldn't picture being pregnant again or having another baby in the family. I thought I was going to have to wait for three weeks after the four positive tests (I told you I couldn't believe it) to finally go to the doctor and confirm the little life inside me. However, after I came down with an infection I was told to go ahead and come in a little early. I was asked if I wanted to have an ultrasound to see the baby. How could I say no? I was only five weeks at the time and knew I wouldn't see much, but was surprised to find out that the baby measured even smaller than that. I was told that it may or may not be okay, but the midwife seemed to be prepping me for miscarriage. I was angry with her for jumping to conclusions and not taking my pregnancy more seriously. I guess I wanted know right then what would happen with my baby. I went back a couple more times and had blood work done to check the progress. It was growing and we did see a heartbeat, but it still measured about two weeks behind. I prayed so hard for God to bless that little life and to help it grow healthy and safe. I spent hours in the Bible and praying to Him. This was the most I had ever relied on God.
On June 18 I had a regularly scheduled appointment and Jeff had not been planning on coming with me because we expected everything to be okay. Thank the Lord Jeff and Ansley were both with me. When the doctor did the ultrasound, we found that there was no longer a heartbeat. I stared at that lifeless little baby still inside me in disbelief. I still had the image of its beating heart in my mind. How could this be? We were leaving the next day for our annual vacation to Florida with my family and had to decide then what to do. Would I let it be and naturally miscarry, risking a miscarriage on vacation or when Jeff was at work and I was alone? The doctor warned that with the size of the baby it would be very painful and dangerous. Or would I have a D&C? Jeff and I went to the hospital that afternoon and our sweet baby was taken from my body. It was very painful for both of us and we are so thankful for our families who rushed to be by our sides.
I told Jeff that afternoon that people were watching how we were handling this and we still needed to praise the Lord and give Him glory for the good He has done in our lives. I knew He was teaching us through this hardship. I felt the prayers of so many of our family, friends, and church family. While I was incredibly sad, I was also hopeful in the Lord that He would pull us through this hard time and give us the strength we needed. Oh my goodness, how He did. I do not know how people go through things like this that don't know the Lord. He truly is my strength. I have learned how to honestly trust Him with everything and know that He loves me and has a good plan for my family.
We were told by the doctor soon afterward that it would be okay to continue trying to grow our family and that's what we prayed for. A little less than four weeks ago, we found out that we are expecting once again. I thought I would be a nervous wreck, scared, anxious. I have been none of those. I have felt pregnant, pictured myself big and pregnant in the winter, and have imagined what my new sweet baby will be like. God has given me such a sense of peace and calm and has reassured me that He is in control and loves this baby even more than I do. We had our first appointment this morning and here's what we saw: A beautiful and healthy baby growing just as it should be. We immediately saw the fast little heartbeat that I had prayed so hard to see. We will welcome this precious little baby to our family around April 25. I know it's a risk announcing this to everyone since it's still early, but I'm hopeful in the Lord and could really use as many prayers as possible!
Yesterday some of my friends and I decided to brave Houston traffic and take our babies to the children's museum. It was the most amazing place for kids and Ansley started smiling as soon as we walked in and never stopped. I turned her loose and followed her throughout the first floor as she ran from one thing to the next. I'll post those pics as soon as I get them from my friend.
On the way home, we decided to visit Jeff at his station since he was at work. Even though Ansley's daddy and grandpa are firefighters, she had never been to see the firetrucks and she had a great time pretending to drive. Maybe in a few years we'll let her slide down the pole.
So, I was looking for something to get me out of the house for a little while every week. I just wanted a little time to myself for peace and quiet since Ansley's been so fussy and even more demanding than normal. I started taking cake decorating classes in July with my mom, beginning with the basic decorating course. Loved it! Now I'm taking the fondant and gum paste class and am loving that, too. The trouble is all of the yummy cakes and cupcakes. I'm trying to convince myself that I don't like them anymore. Ha! So here's a pic of a birthday cake and cupcakes I made for my sweet friend, Kate.
You are 16 months old now. I wonder when I'll finally stop telling your age in months and just in years. This has been the shortest but sweetest 16 months of my life. I love every single minute I spend with you. Here is what's going on with you: -You have ten teeth...four top front, four bottom front, two top back. I just felt one bottom back that has broken the skin and the other should be soon to follow. No wonder you've been so fussy lately! -Your hair is growing, but is hard to see because it's so blonde. It's still too short to put a bow in it. Speaking of those, you refuse to wear the headband with bow for any longer than a few seconds anymore. I miss those precious big bows you used to wear. They were your signature, but it's been many months since you last wore one. -Your daddy and I are constantly amazed at how smart you are. We have been working on your body parts and you know where to find your eyes, nose, ears, hair, teeth, belly button, and toes. You also know how to clip the straps on your booster seat and have recently learned how to put on your shoes. -You took your first bath in the water hose today. You played a little in it when I was watering, so I decided you would enjoy stripping down and running through it. It was such a precious sight! -You are one busy little girl. You love to get all of your toys and bring them to the living room to play. -You are so much fun to play with. You love playing chase and crawling around the floor with Daddy. You also love to tackle Molly, but she has started hiding from you. -You are so tall and I have realized that you are no longer a baby, but are now a kid. I'm having so much fun with you! You walk very well, but prefer to run everywhere you go. -You love people and never meet a stranger. You have always been this way. You love going to church to play with your friends and see all of Mommy and Daddy's friends too.
My sweet little girl, I love you so much. Please stop growing up so quickly.