Sunday, July 19, 2015

Keira-isms: 2 1/2 years


Keira is a naturally funny girl. There is a certain innate quirkiness about her that just makes her funny. She is enthusiastic, never short on something to say, and has a good sense of logic that just makes certain conversations funny. Here's the latest in a batch of funny things she has said or done that I've recorded.


1. While reading a library book about a farm we came to a page depicting a cow with a large udder (above picture). Keira saw the cow, pointed to the udder and said, "Uh oh pig!"

2. Driving in the car Keira became upset with Hailey for looking out the window on her side of the car. "Heeeey Hailey! No look my picture!"

3. After spending some time outside doing yard work, Keira had a small potty accident while wearing her favorite skirt. Our conversation went like this: 

Renae: "You go up to the bathroom."
Keira: "You go up to the bathroom."
Renae: "No, you go. You peed your pants."
Keira: "You peed your pants."
Renae: "No, you peed your pants."
Keira: "I peed my skirt."

4. Hailey has recently gotten into attempting to tell jokes. The girls have been introduced to the idea of the knock knock joke. Sitting around the kitchen table the girls were telling their own jokes. Keira's went:

Knock, knock.
Who's there?
(brief pause...) I don't know!

5. Over the 4th of July the girls and Kyle spent a few hours at Lagoon with Kyle's family that was in town. Keira had her hair in a ponytail (which she insists on everyday when I make her do her hair). Keira rode on Odyssey, a ride with different ocean animals that sprays water. One of the animals on the ride is a shark. When Keira got off the ride her ponytail was gone. Kyle asked her, "Keira, where is your ponytail?" She replied in all seriousness, while motioning with her hands to where her ponytail once was, "The shark ate it! He bit it off!"

Keira's pirate face. "Arrrr..."

6. About to leave for church, Keira asked to ride on my back. "A ride to where?" I asked. "To the car" she said. "You can just walk" I said. Then she exclaimed completely stunned, "Walk to church!?"

7. One afternoon Hailey spent a few hours playing at her friend Cate's house, who lives across the street and halfway around the block from us. Kyle had just come home from work and I needed to go pick Hailey up. Kyle had gone up to our bedroom when I asked Keira if she'd like to come along or stay. She said she wanted to stay with her dad. I said ok and walked out the front door to walk over to Cate's. I had been a Cate's for a few minutes talking with Dawn when their doorbell rang. When the door was opened there stood Keira. After I had left she had decided she did want to come with me and had put on her shoes and left she house. She crossed the street, walked around the block, and rang the doorbell all on her own. I was shocked! Partially upset and partially proud of her. My 2 year old navigated the neighborhood all on her own. In the meantime by the time Kyle had come back downstairs from the bedroom both of us were gone, so he had assumed Keira was with me. Thank goodness she knew her way, because we each thought the other person had Keira with them. This happened just a week after I had lost Keira at the library and had librarians looking for her. She had gone outside and was sitting alone on a bench patiently waiting.

8. Just last week I was heading out the door with all 3 girls to meet up with Kyle at Chick-fil-A for some free dinner for Cow Appreciation Day. I opened the door from the house to the garage and set Kacey in her car seat down on the cement while the other two girls filed into the garage. With my back turned to the girls, I pushed the button to open the garage door, slipped on my shoes and bent down to pick Kacey's car seat up. As I did so I heard screaming. Real, terrified screaming. I turned around to see the garage door all the way up with Keira dangling from it. She had taken an accidental ride on the door as it went up. She was holding on for dear life with her arms stretched out and her feet dangling. I wish I had a picture of it. But of course I dashed to her rescue and grabbed her before she could fall and get hurt. And then I tried to hold in a laugh.

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Kacey: 1 week


Kacey is 11 days old today, and already I feel like she's grown. Well, I know for a fact she's grown, because I took her to the doctor and already she's gained back her birth weight plus some. But it's not just that. At about her one week mark I looked at her and swear she had already grown overnight. Her cheeks are filling in, she's more awake and alert, and that mama sense just tells me she's grown. It's inevitable, she needs to grow. I'm happy to see her grow, but suddenly I realized how quickly she'll lose her newborn-ness. So I tortured her. I pulled out the camera to try to get a few shots of her before that newborn look passes away.


Kacey is a fantastic baby. She hardly complains. When she does her cry is so mild it's adorable. When it really gets built up it sounds like an evil laugh. That's how she sounded when she was born, she came into the world sounding her evil laugh of a cry. When she wants attention that doesn't warrant a cry she squawks. One loud squawk, that's it. And the grunting. She grunts and grunts when she is trying to wake up. Or when she really should be sleeping but can't quite settle down.


Kacey really is so patient and thankfully not fussy. Fingers crossed she stays that way. We are only 11 days in, it could all change. We all love to cuddle her and are grateful she has such a mild temperament. Now if only she didn't want to party at 2 am. :)

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Meet Kacey & Her Birth Story


She's here! Kacey K Hill was born July 1, at 1:37 am. She weighed 7 lbs. 14 oz., and was 20 inches long. Apparently I run an efficient baby factory because all 3 girls were the same size at birth. Hailey was 7 lbs. 15 oz., 19.5 inches long, and Keira was 8 lbs. and 20 inches long.

THE BIRTH STORY:

To preface this, I had originally wanted to attempt another natural birth. I had Keira naturally, though not intentionally. In comparison to Hailey and Keira's births I much preferred the un-medicated delivery. It was way more painful, but I felt pretty fantastic afterwards, or at least as fantastic as you can after having a baby. So, for this birth I had intended to labor at home for as long as possible where I would be comfortable and free to move around. Then head to the hospital when the contractions became intense and then deliver an hour or two later. Unfortunately, it didn't happen that way. Of course. Not that the delivery was terrible, but it just didn't go according to my plan.

I hit my due date on Tuesday, June 30. (Well, my supposed due date, according to the hospital I was due the next day, the day Kacey was born.) Hailey and Keira both arrived two and three days before they were due. I was expecting/hoping Kacey would do the same. When I hit that due date I was feeling a bit depressed. Why hadn't she come yet? I hadn't ever made it to 40 weeks. Not that it's a big deal, I wasn't way over, but I was of course anxious to meet our baby girl and put pregnancy behind me. I was so done with being pregnant. I had reached the point of uncomfortable and just wanted to move on with life.

That morning I tried to do a little bit of some exercise, walking up and down the stairs at home, and doing a few squats in an attempt to coax her to come. The weather has been so hot it just isn't comfortable to be out walking in it, otherwise I would have been walking all over town. Instead, the girls and I spent the day with my mom, just hanging out and relaxing. A bit before 5:00 pm my mom dropped us off at our house and I began working on dinner. While dinner was heating, I sat down for a few minutes to rest. When I went to stand up I felt a small leak of fluid. I immediately used the bathroom, but the fluid continued to trickle out. I found Kyle and I told him I thought I was leaking fluid, so we quickly ate dinner, I called my mom, packed a quick hospital bag (yes, I know... I never could bring myself to do it sooner), and we loaded everyone up the car. We dropped the girls off at my parents house and Kyle and I headed to the hospital. At this point I had yet to have a single contraction. By the time we got to the hospital my shorts were noticeably wet. Not soaked, but definitely wet. 

We checked in at about 6:30 pm, where I was stuck in a bed and hooked up to machines. The nurse tested me for amniotic fluid and checked my cervix. When she checked my cervix my water completely broke and we knew for sure we were in for a long night. We were definitely there to stay. Because I wasn't contracting, unfortunately for me that meant I needed to be put on pitocin to induce labor. Which of course I really didn't want to do, especially since I was hoping to avoid an epidural. But, with my water broken, I needed to deliver to avoid infection. I was put on a low dose of pitocin and chose to try to ride it out without an epidural as long as I could. I made it about 3 or 4 hours before the contractions became intense. At the time we arrived to the hospital I was only 2 or 3 cm dilated. When the contractions became super painful I asked the nurse to check me again. I was only 4 cm. Gah! That pitocin stuff is brutal. The thought of a full night of crazy intense contractions, only to get more painful, and 6 cm to go convinced me to cave in to the epidural. Once I was on the epidural the dosage of pitocin was increased and things began to move quickly. After 2 hours with the epidural I began to feel a lot of pressure. No pain of course (which admittedly was nice), but lots and lots of pressure. I hadn't been paying attention to the computer monitoring the contractions. If I had I may have realized sooner how close I was to delivering. The nurse checked me and immediately told me not to move or sneeze. She dashed off to call the doctor. I was completely dilated. Luckily the epidural helped calm the urge to push and I was able to wait it out until the doctor arrived a little while later. As soon as he showed up he had me push 3 times and there was Kacey. 


Overall the birth was quick. My water broke just after 5:00 pm and she was born the next morning at 1:37 am. Kyle and I were a bit stunned to be spending that night in the hospital. It came on so quick, since my water broke. I think it really took a few days for everything to sink in for us. 

The girls stayed with my parents while I was in the hospital. My mom brought the girls in to meet their sister. Keira was instantly interested in Kacey. She was so excited to meet and hold her baby sister. When Keira first saw me with my belly still large (this was only 9 hours or so after Kacey was born) after commenting that baby sister came out of my tummy, she asked me if I had another baby in my tummy. Leave it to kids to state the obvious. :) 


Hailey was a bit more timid. She was the same way when Keira was born. I think the hospital made her feel uncomfortable. She didn't want to go look at Kacey or hold her. She only wanted to color the coloring book the girls were given when they were admitted into the maternity ward. Eventually we were able to coax her away from her coloring for a few minutes so she could meet her sister.


Not to worry though, since being home it didn't take too long for Hailey to feel comfortable helping out with her sister. She even was able to feed her once. When my milk first came in I felt like I was about to burst, so I pumped a few ounces to relieve the pain. I let Hailey use that milk to give Kacey a bottle, which happily Kacey took to quickly.


Kacey's birth actually came at the perfect time. She was born Wednesday morning. Kyle's parents flew into town for the 4th of July on Thursday morning. They were able to come see her in the hospital just before we were discharged to go home. Kyle took Wednesday and Thursday off, and then already had Friday off for the holiday, so he was able to enjoy a nice long weekend with his family. It was pretty perfect.


And now here we are, a family of 5. (Please excuse Keira's wild hair. She's 2. Need I say more?) 


Welcome to the world Kacey K! (In case you are wondering, K is Kyle's middle name. Yes, just the letter K.)

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Summer Is Officially Here!


Summer is now in full swing! And that means F.U.N! We started our summer off with two weeks of swim lessons for both girls. Our mornings began with breakfast, then straight into swimsuits for 45 minutes of refreshing fun. 

Keira is on the younger side, but I knew she would love it. Love it she did. She had a blast splashing and playing in the water. At her size it's all about having fun and learning to feel comfortable in the water.


This was Hailey's third season of swim lessons. She worked on her back float and front crawl. She needs more practice before moving on to the next level, but I'm happy that she is feeling more and more confident in the water. She loves to bob up and down, fully submerging her head, and is able to navigate herself around the pool on her own with the assistance of a floatie. Maybe next year she'll be more ready to attempt to tackle swimming on her own. At least if she can touch the bottom, she feels comfortable to play in the pool floatie-less. I take that as a success.


We have also spent time swimming at Papa and Rara Park's neighborhood pool, a trip to the splash pad, multiple outings to Lagoon (where just this weekend Hailey was able to ride on the BIG rollercoasters, the ones I refuse to ride. She loved it. And Kyle loved it. I'm glad they have each other to ride with.), playing in the water with friends, walks on the Lagoon Trail to see the animals and stay cool in the shade of the trees, a free summer movie at the movie theater, and occasionally indulging in popcicles and ice cream.

So far our summer has been off to a busy start. Now we're just waiting for baby sister to arrive and slow things down for a bit. Until then we'll continue to try to find ways to have fun and keep cool. That 100 degree weather has hit and it's hot!

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Fathers Are Important Too: A Father's Day Shoutout


Today is Father's Day. Of course I want to shout out and wish a happiest of Father's Day to the dad of our home. 

I don't know that fathers always get all the credit they deserve. So much of what I see online talks about mothers: being a better mother, don't get discouraged mom you're doing a great job, moms are so important etc... This likely is because women seem to do the majority of blogging. At least in the blog-o-sphere I follow. 

But fathers are just as important. Children need both, a mother and a father. That is the makeup of a family. Our Heavenly Father designed us this way for good reason. Kyle and I balance each other out. I tend to be more sensitive, practical, and worry too much. Kyle is fun and games, lighthearted, but also stern and a more effective enforcer. My girls need their dad. He makes life fun for them, but also gives them good structure and guidelines to grow by.


Isn't there just something awesome about a dad that moms just don't possess? Maybe it's the fact that boys never seem to grow up completely. They can more easily release their inner child and spur laughter and giggles without any effort. Or maybe it's because they generally are gone at work all day, so it is a bit more exciting to be home and playing with the kids. It could be both. Either way, dads are some sort of awesome that moms just aren't. Or at least that is how it works at our house.

I appreciate Kyle and the time he spends with out girls. Things like teaching them to fish, mow the lawn, shoot a bow and arrow, exploring the outdoors, doing science experiments, teaching them the importance of exercise and a good diet, and expanding their creativity and imagination through Legos and drawing.


What I lack, Kyle tends to make up for. And vice versa. Neither of us are perfect, therefore we need each other to work as a team to raise these girls. Who they are and how they behave doesn't come from the efforts of just one of us, we are teaching these girls together. What a blessing that is! 

So I say, "Yay for fathers!" They are just as needed as mothers. I'm thankful for Kyle and his role as the father of our home. So are our girls, they love their dad and look forward to his coming home each evening. As do I, some days he helps restore my sanity, or takes over when I'm exhausted. 

Kyle, I want to wish you a very happy Father's Day. Thank you for being the fantastic dad that you are. Us girls really are blessed to have you in our life. We wouldn't have it any other way. :)  

And a big thank you and happy Father's Day to my very own dad, and also to Kyle's dad. Thank you for all you have done for us both as children and now as adults. Our family is blessed to have you both in our lives! Seriously.

Friday, June 19, 2015

Spring Soccer

Hailey played a third season of soccer this past spring. Her skill level from just the previous fall has grown so much! Kyle and I were a bit surprised to see how much physical change could take place in just 6 months. Hailey was better at defending and attacking the ball, and changing the ball's direction to be able to kick it where she wanted it to go instead of just straight up the field. She also learned a bit of teamwork cheering on her teammates and letting them take the ball when they had it instead of trying to take it from them. Hailey even scored a few goals this season- a first for her! We were pretty proud of her accomplishments.



Keira was Hailey's cheerleader. Seriously. She was always excited to watch Hailey play and would yell "Go Hailey!" That girl looks up to her big sister so much. It made me so happy to see her anxious to watch her sister play. Keira even got in on a bit of the coaching one day. After watching Hailey's coach point and instruct the girls Keira marched herself out onto the field and began pointing and giving her own instructions. It was pretty hilarious. 


Hailey absolutely loves playing soccer. I hope that sticks with her. She has a constant smile on her face when she is out on the field. She is enthusiastic when her teammates score goals, jumping and celebrating with them. Of course she's extra excited when the goal is her own. :)

She's already signed up for another season starting again in just two months. I'm already excited, I love watching her play! 

Friday, June 5, 2015

Dear Hailey


Dear Hailey,

You are one awesome girl. You are my oldest, my first! We discover new things together, me and you. As you get older you take me into new parenting territory I have yet to explore. It is so fun to watch you grow. In fact, I find it terribly difficult to picture you as a baby. I know it happened, I was there, we have pictures and videos. But in the 5 1/2 years since you were born you have grown tremendously! 

You are our learner. The inquisitive one. You love to read and have begun asking me what words mean if you're unfamiliar with them. You love watching videos that teach you things, like the Magic School Bus, Wild Kratts and Popular Mechanics for Kids. You ask me daily how things work or how they're made. Sometimes you even teach me things, like the difference between a turtle and a tortoise. You say you want to be a doctor or a scientist and honestly I hope you keep that desire. Aim high, because I know you can get there. You are smart and have a passion for learning. You're already reading everything and doing basic addition without yet spending a day in kindergarten. There is no holding you back from learning because you just soak it all up. I love that about you.

You are also a good friend. You care about others and aren't shy to make new friends. Every time we go to the park you find a new friend to play with and are so excited to share that with me. You include everyone. Sometimes you need reminders, you're learning, but it doesn't take much effort for you to be sure everyone is your friend, no matter who they are. You care deeply about your friends and how they perceive you. Be careful that you don't put too much emphasis on other's opinion of you. Know that the most important opinion is how you feel about yourself and the love that your dad and I have for you. Friends come and go, but you'll always have us. 

You love church. You don't hesitate to speak up in Primary and are often eager to share with us what you learned that day. You love reading the scriptures and often remind Dad and I to read them with you in the evening. You know your Heavenly Father loves you, and that is one of the most important things for you to understand in this life. If you know that, you can conquer anything.


You love to have fun and try so hard to be goofy. You try to tell jokes, but haven't quite caught onto humor just yet. Keira thinks your jokes are funny. :) You love to zip around on your scooter and are eager to learn to ride your bike, even though it makes you nervous when you're on it. You love to run around and make up your own American Ninja Warrior course in our family room. You love to play soccer and I love watching you. You get so excited when you score a goal and always cheer on your teammates. You have the biggest smile on your face when you play and that makes me happy.

You love to play with your sister. You and Keira are so funny together. I love watching you play and am so happy you have each other. You are excited for your new baby sister to come and often rub my belly and give her kisses. I know you will be a great help after she is born. You are excited to teach her all sorts of things. I'm sure she'll look up to you, just like Keira does.

This is you at 5 1/2 and I love you for it! You talk constantly about growing up. You already ask me when can you get your own cellphone, get your ears pierced, and are excited to be 16 so you can drive Keira to school. You talk about how you will get married and move away from home and have a home of your own. You constantly are reminding me that you will be 6 on your next birthday and that means you are almost 10. Aaahh.... Hailey! Slow down! Don't be so eager to grow up. Enjoy being a kid. You only get one childhood and then you spend the majority of your life as an adult. Being a kid is fun! I love you how you are and I'm not ready for you to grow up so fast. Let's take it slow and do it together, ok? Already I know that if I blink too long you will be grown and your childhood innocence will disappear. I'm currently not sure what happened to the past 5 1/2 years. It seems to have happened so fast that sometimes I forget you are a child. You're not a baby, you're not a toddler. You are a child, eager to start kindergarten, ready to open up a whole new chapter in your life. Am I ready? I'm not so sure. I'm working on getting there. It'll happen whether I'm ready for it or not. I guess that saying from Hide-and-Seek applies, "ready or not here I come!"

What I ask of you is this, please enjoy life as it comes your way. It's ok to look forward to things, but love it as it happens. You're only 5 once, let's make the next 5 months great. And then we'll tackle being 6 and all of the awesomeness that comes along with that. Ok?

I love you! Never stop being your awesome self!

Love,

Mom


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