Friday, July 22, 2016


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When we chose to have another baby, it was with the reassurance that we would not be alone in this effort. And in these first few weeks, as I've rested and recovered and cared for and gotten to know our new son, we've had such wonderful help.

Visitors who kept our house and family running smoothly, projects and repairs taken care of, dinners delivered and even more filling our freezer for the days to come, play dates for the kids and sweet friends taking care of our children, groceries purchased, little gifts for baby Isaac which meant 'we love you', time off from work for Jordan, notes of congratulations and encouragement. And kindly asked questions of 'any sleep?' from friends who remember how hard this has been for us in the past.

I feel so blessed.

First few weeks

Just resting in the grass while Mom picks raspberries
At just about 3 weeks old now, here are a few things about Isaac so far.

So far...

To show he's a little upset, Isaac is as likely to furrow his brow as he is to really wail (except for diaper change time - then he lets me know he's not so happy). Once when Porter was holding Isaac for a few moments, he said "He's getting fussy!" I reassured Porter that Isaac was fine, since he was just resting quietly on Porter's lap. "He is getting fussy! Porter said, pointing to Isaac's furrowed brow, "See, look at his eyes!"

Isaac does love to be held and cuddled, and much of each day is spent in my arms. But it has been amazing to see as he's had more awake time how content he is to just relax on his own and watch what's happening around him. Having had other babies who were not so happy to just hang out  has made me so very grateful for this!

When Landon was a baby, I remember another mom bringing her baby to ward choir in his car seat, and he just sat there. For thirty minutes! Wide eyed and happy, he just looked around and rested on his own, perfectly content. And it was so strange/amazing to me that a baby could just sit and be happy without being held/talked to/sung to/rocked/walked that I still remember it ten years later! :)

And now, little Isaac is surprising me in that same way! Of course, he is sad sometimes. And cries when he's hungry or tired or sometimes for reasons I don't know. He is a newborn :) but so far, a very happy, calm and content newborn.

 The big kids love little Isaac so much. And I've been amazed to watch them hold him and care for him and not panic when he starts to fuss, but just try something different to help calm him.

Landon is our star Isaac holder and I've made breakfast hands free the last several mornings while Landon has soaked in some Isaac cuddling time. What  a blessing! And Owen and Ellie love to put a blanket down and lay down next to Isaac on the floor. Owen will rest beside him and just say over and over in his sweetest voice things like "your brother is right here, your brother loves you..." Porter asks to hold him, but is quickly ready to move the turn along to someone else after just a few seconds.

In our first few days home, Isaac quickly formed an 'eat/wake/sleep' routine which so far has been really great. And I've felt blessed to be able to tell most of the time which cries mean 'i'm hungry' and which mean 'i'm sleepy' or 'i'm having a hard time waking up' or 'something's wrong and i just need to be held and cuddled'. (Breastfeeding was especially hard the first while, so being able to judge which cries really meant 'i'm hungry'  was really wonderful because otherwise I would have ended up just nursing him constantly and probably couldn't have survived it!)

I've been so grateful for so much help and support from Jordan, and from the kids, and Kathie & Winslow and so many others so that I've been able to spend so much time just holding and loving little Isaac. What a blessing for these first few weeks!

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

March & April Little Things (which I forgot to post last month! :)

This is a bit late, now that it's June... but here are just a few fun little things from the Springtime. 

We took Landon in to the eye doctor and discovered that he most definitely needed glasses. (Update: we recently saw another doctor who specializes in eye problems like Landon has and he was completely surprised at how well Landon could see and determine depth, etc. We'd gone expecting to start some vision therapy on a regular basis, but the doctor said Landon was already at the level he'd hope to see him progress to after therapy. Good news! This summer Landon is working on patching a few hours a day and hopefully we'll see some great progress.)

We went to the Easter egg dash at Elkridge Park. Really, this is so silly because it lasts about 30 seconds, and then the kids all have a bunch of sticky candy that I don't particularly want them to eat... still it always seems like a fun tradition... This year Landon was too old to participate, so he stood on the sideline and helped give Owen some great big brother tips :)

We had several more Deer Pen meetings, etc. (above Jordan and Landon are out delivering flyers to the neighbors). Overall, I was discouraged with the outcome and the process, but also grateful for it to pretty much be over so I could quit losing sleep over the whole thing! (And also grateful for all the good and kind people I got to know a little better).  Right now, we're in the process of helping to make some plans for the remaining open space and so far it has been a much more pleasant process :)

Landon came home one day and told us the spelling bee was the next day. Jordan wrote up a program to make practicing into a little game and Landon had fun memorizing spelling words for an afternoon and evening.

We had a fun and beautiful campfire evening up at Green Canyon that ended with a bit of a rainstorm/snowstorm.

Our friends invited us to do a cupcake wars activity with them and we had fun making 'great outdoors' cupcakes with orange slice sunshines, milano cookie mountains, and sweet potato campfires.

It is always just so wonderful  when everything starts to come alive again in the Springtime!

We celebrated Owen's birthday with a pirate party for him with his friends from the ward/neighborhood. 

And enjoyed some simple Easter celebrating. 

One day after school, Landon invited these girls to come over and have a water fight (with the promise that he wouldn't shoot them, they could just get him! :)

And then we were off for our adventures in London!

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Reading Lately

Blink: I think Malcolm Gladwell always has such fun interesting little facts that he ties into his books. I'm not always totally convinced of his whole ideaw, but I do always find myself trying to remember all the interesting things so I can talk to Jordan about them. I thought some of the most interesting examples in this were those about first impressions and how those are often just as useful as detailed study.

When Mischief came to Town: A cute little story of a happy little girl and the brightness she shared with her grandmother and friends.

Justin Case: Shells, smells & the Horrible Flip Flops of Doom: I got this as a quick read for Landon and picked it up one afternoon and loved it. I just loved this kid and his efforts to be brave.

Ivy & Bean take care of the Babysitter: Same thing on this one except it was for Ellie. I kept expecting these little girls to get in trouble though and it seemed they never did, even though there was quite a lot of mischief!

Mindful Birthing and JuJu Sundin's Birth Skills: These two books are the best birthing books I've found. Before I was pregnant with Porter, I read and read lots of different books on birthing (Because I knew what it was like and I was really anxious about another natural birth or another epidural!) and these were my favorite. They are a funny combination because one is all about mindfulness and being present in the moment, while the other is all about distraction. But I used ideas from both of them in my labors with both Porter and Isaac and found them super helpful.

The Year of Billy Miller: A cute elementary school story.

Poet Slave of Cuba: I'm not sure how I ended up with this one. But somehow it made it to our house from the library and I was out of books so I read it. Interesting and very sad, but a little hopeful. I'm not sure...

Beauty and the Beast: The only one who didn't run away: The cover had me skeptical about this, but it was a cute variation on the classic story with a fun creative spin.  I finished this in the hospital while I cuddled up little Isaac, so I'll remember it fondly just for that. :)

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Lately (baby version)

These have been some wonderfully sweet days of holding and cuddling, nursing and diapering, swaddling and bundling, kissing and loving this new little one.

I feel so grateful for all the help we've had. Dinners and dishes and repairs and groceries and stories with the boys and legos with Landon and projects with Ellie and morning sleeping in time for me... and a million other things while I've just loved this little Isaac right up.

Welcome baby!

Welcome to our family little Isaac Joshua Brough! You are so very loved already!