The hardest part of parenting so far...

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is potty training!

OK, so it wasn't/isn't that bad,but I did have a few anxiety filled days in the last week.
The first day was chaos--constantly changing Landon's wet undies, wiping up pee on the floor, and running back and forth to the bathroom.
The second day was much better--half as many accidents, and many of the accidents he stopped before they actually made a puddle on the floor.
From then on , it has just gotten better.
The hardest part was him just letting himself go. I'd never heard of a kid afraid of peeing, just normally #2. Well, he was of both really! It took about 6 days before he was just OK to sit, let it 'flow', and scream YAY!
We are now officially past a week of training. He hasn't worn diapers in a week, just his big boy undies. And he hasn't had an accident since Sunday ( when we tried to leave him in the nursery), but last Friday was the last one at home. OK, so he jumped over Luke and me on the couch and hit his forehead on the CORNER of the end table yesterday. And he peed on himself a little bit, but I won't consider that an accident. If I had the massive hemotobin, blood spot, and bruise on my head, I'm sure I'd do the same =) He held most of it in, and went straight to the potty to finish.
We've had 3 days in a row now where we have left the house to run errands, and he has stayed dry in the car, used the potty at the store, and came home dry.
We aren't doing pull -ups at nap time and he has been dry the past 2 days--even with 3+ hour naps! Let's hope this streak continues today.
At night time, we are doing pull-ups. He sleeps for 12ish hours at night, and he DOESN'T wake himself up to go. We go 2-3 times before we go to bed, and don't drink about 2+ hours before bed time.He was dry the night before last,and this morning he was just a little wet.So maybe he will have a great bladder sooner than later =) We got a package of pull-ups yesterday that had 58 in them, and with a coupon were about $16. So $8 a month is OK for now =)
All of this wouldn't have been as stressful, I'm sure, if I wasn't 5 1/2 months pregnant, trying to get the house ready for new carpet in the bedrooms, finish some big tutus, WHILE following his EVERY move for 3-4 days, asking him 1,000,000 a day " Tell Mommy and Daddy when you need to go Potty, OK?" Of course, I love to hear him say " OOOOTTTTAYYY MOMMMY".
 (My name has changed in the last week from Momma--to Em-- to Mommy. )

Luke has been very helpful with this all. He knows when I've reached my limit mentally & emotionally, and need to leave the house. He's also been great about taking him into public restrooms for Landon to go. I also think Landon needed a break from me, and maybe a different approach a few times a day from Luke.

Landon seems to have grown up so much this past week, even with saying more words.He says "I lub you" on a regular basis now =) He can say " I did it", " big boy", "undies", "pee pee potty", and of course many other things that are non-potty related. Our whole life has revolved about the potty for a week now, and I love it. Even workers at Home Deopt were asking him today if he had on his big boy undies & going pee pee.He has also turned into a SNUGGLE BUG! With mommy and daddy's eyes on him basically 24/7, he has enjoyed more time in our laps, in our bed ( on his towel), and laying on the couch with us watching TV.

It's been so much fun looking back at all the things he has learned in the past 22 months, and we're so ready to enjoy all the  big boy things with him as he continues to grow!
 I feel like potty training is the first thing that a parent HAS to teach a child. The other milestones so far can mostly be picked up by watching and playing, but potty training is just that--training. It takes time, effort, and hard work. And mostly, it takes A LOT OF LOVE!

 Oh--and patience =)


What a LONG weekend.

Time away from home is always great! It can always be stressful getting things packed, ready, and making sure the house is not a mess when you return, but it is so much fun to spend all day with Luke and Landon.

We have tried to go to Gatlinburg every fall for the past couple of years, so we went out of town last Friday. We met up with Amanda and Elyssa in Gatlinburg ,and we checked into our hotel. Everyone finally fell asleep for about a 3 hour nap --ok, Amanda, Elyssa, Luke and Landon fell asleep--before we headed out for dinner and some walking, caramel apples, rock candy, and of course Fanny Farkles.This was Elyssa's first visit, and we had REALLY talked it up to her. She seemed to have a blast!

On Saturday morning we got some breakfast in the room--the fabulous doughnuts and coffee, hot chocolate, or juice--then we got some extra clothes together, and headed to GA.We made a few stops along the way through the mountains.
1st stop was at Newfoundland Gap.
2nd stop was to walk up to Clingman's Dome(have you done that with a 6 year old & a 22 month old & a 5 month pregnant girl?) That was a long uphill 1/2 mile;Fun Times!
 3rd stop was in Cherokee, NC for lunch, and for me to change out of sweats. Clothes are STILL not comfy on me, and maternity don't really fit too well still. Once we got to Toccoa, GA, we met up with some family.

It was their college's homecoming, which means a lot of family and friends. Luke Landon got to meet some of my Mom's cousins, their kids, and some friends of ours. Landon also got to see his great grandma and grandpa Dees--he hadn't seen them since he was 11 weeks old. He got to see his Great Aunt Libby and Great Uncle Bill, and some of my cousins too. We had a nice lunch at my Great Aunts house, and watched the AL football game =(  At the end of the night, we drove over to see the Falls before we headed back to Gatlinburg. Landon and Elyssa were wiped out from playing all day, and slept the entire way.

Sunday was another packed day, starting with another breakfast of doughnuts! Elyssa had some make-up school work to finish, and Luke had some phone calls to make with work. We headed out for a little walking around before meeting up with my parents back at the hotel. We made our way to the Apple Barn to eat for the afternoon, looked around the Christmas Place ( YAY!!!), then headed  back to walk around Gatlinburg, ride the trolley, and hit the bed LATE AGAIN.

On our last morning, we hit up the pancake pantry, packed our rooms up, and headed to the craftsmen village for a little bit.We made a pit stop at Chick Fil A, then headed back to Nashville!

Landon loves his poppy!

Vacations seem to get more and more busy!
But it's nice to get away from the house, and enjoy new scenery for a while.

If only I knew how stressful life would be the next week...
time to potty train, straight to undies!


*Vacation* (updated)

We are leaving Friday morning to head to Gatlinburg! We're meeting Elyssa & Amanda sometime in the morning, my parents are dropping them off as they head to Toccoa  for their college homecoming. Elyssa has never been, and we're trying to get her pumped up about it! The last time she was supposed to go was in December about 5 years ago. Luke's dad had a stroke an hour or so before we pulled out, so we cancelled that year. Landon and her are just excited to hang out all weekend. My parents will drive back through Sunday morning, and are staying at the same hotel as us that night. We're planning on Apple Barn dinner with the fam Sunday night, and of course Pancake Pantry Monday morning before heading home later in the afternoon.
Luke and I have gone the past 2 years around this time, so we're making it our Fall trip tradition. We also went right after we got married, and have taken a pic at the Gatlinburg entrance sign. But I have also taken a picture the past 2 years that I must do again this year.
{30 weeks pregnant with Landon}
{Landon 10 months old}
{New picture!Landon 22 months, and me almost21 weeks pregnant}

I can't wait to take one next year with Landon & an 8 month old =) We're so ready to leave the house for a few days since Luke has been working SO much. Inventory is finally over. That means him working until 2 am, and getting back to work at 5 am is over! That means working 14 hour days for the month of September is over! That means we finally get to see him every day! AND that means I can get some help with his massive piles of laundry, and leave Landon at home if I need to get out.


20 weeks!

We have made it half-way!
Today was another ultrasound, and since they just measured almost everything at 18 weeks, it was a lot quicker. I drank a TON of orange juice, a little coffee, and ate a small breakfast on the way to the Dr, hoping it would make her more active and visible than last time! The heart was in perfect view, and they were able to see the 4th chamber that they couldn't see at 18 weeks. Her face was in semi-perfect view, BUT she had her legs wrapped up on her head, so still didn't get a good face shot =) I'm not going to put the ultrasound pictures up because she didn't cooperate all the way, and she looks like an animal! She was moving around quite a bit all morning, and we did see that on the ultrasound as well.
We had several questions today that we wanted to ask the Dr.--from the baby's health, to delivery, to post pardum issues.He did assure us that everything is checking out healthy with Lucy. They did see blood in my placenta still, so it is still most likely the reason for the ecogenic ( I think that's the word!) bowel, and the reason for the triple screen marker coming back high. There is still  the tiny chance of other abnormalities, they did mention cystic fibrosis today as well, but none of those we will find out until she is born. Everything else points towards healthy! So we are worry free, and are still feeling blessed for being chosen to be parents to baby Lucy! The 24 & 28 week visit will be normal, but I will have another ultrasound at week 32 to re-check the baby. He also wants to check the fluid level this time around. The chances of that being low again are not likely, but they are probable. He feels much safer just keeping an eye on all of these things--for his and our sanity, rather than because he expects anything to go wrong.He also let us know that the 2 vessel thing isn't as big of a worry as it use to be because they are able to see everything now with ultrasounds. And also that it causes no life-long issues, that the vessels clot up after the baby is born, and go away anyway, so it only having 2 won't affect it.
We had decided that I wanted to try for a VBAC, and he had agreed that if all went well, no complications, and I was ready to go by or before my due date, I'd have no issues. I had been thinking this week about it a little bit with some of the possible complications with the 2 cord, bowel stuff, and her being small. So Luke asked today about the delivery, and he said we probably can count on a repeat c-section. But we don't have to schedule it until later on, unless I decide I want to sooner. There are just a few 'ifs' still floating around, so I want whatever is safest for the baby and me. But if I'm ready to have the baby, it's descending, and everything is good, I can still go ahead. So =) we still will play it by ear, but we know that most likely she will be a Valentine's baby, and be delivered around 39 weeks!
I've gained right around 6-7 pounds at this point, and I think it picks up to about a pound a week now. I did ask if I was going to start gaining more.And he said to not go out and pig out to gain, but just keep doing exactly what I am doing. He also said keep working out, and doing as much as I can still because it will keep me feeling better, besides keeping me healthy. I did ask about my headaches because they have been SO HORRIBLE the past 2 weeks. I wanted to make sure I wasn't taking too much Tylenol.Thankfully, Luke has been home when they have been the worst, so I am able to crawl into bed--which he also said is another great thing to do.

We know the next 18-20 weeks will be great!
 People have been giving us clothes to sort through, Elyssa gave us her 3 in 1 crib & changing table, and Luke & my mom bought some accessories {valance, wall hangings, wall stickers, diaper stacker, and a blanket} to match the bedding we will buy.
As soon as we get the bedroom carpet installed, we will slowly start to move things in and set them up in her room. We'll keep adding pictures as we go =)