Sunday, August 28, 2016

Father Abraham

Do you remember the silly children's song about Father Abraham where, one verse at a time, you add different motions to do.  You add them one at a time... but you still have to do all the previous motions as well, so by the end you're waving your right arm, left arm, right foot, left foot, nodding your head, twirling your hips, and sticking your tongue out all at the same time.  Children have a ball with it, and everyone looks completely silly and the song eventually dissolves into massive fits of giggles.

I feel like ever since Hubby and I returned from our summer travels, we have been singing Father Abraham in that every week we had added one new thing.

We have the twins eating solid foods,
We have Hubby working on grad school, with finishing his degree in sight,
We have Tracey potty-training,
We have Tracey coming off her passie -- slowly but surely,
We have Hubby back to work,
We Mama attending morning workouts four mornings each week,
We have a nanny coming to our home one day each week to watch all three kids,
We have Mama back to work working from home,
We have Mama back to work working away from home and seeing students in the schools,
We have the beginning of fall sports season, which brings its own set of season responsibilities to my hubby, the athletic director,
We have Tracey attending preschool,
We have my teaching a college class at the community college...

Have I left anything out?  Probably.
Like our usual routines and responsibilities -- laundry, dishes, cooking, outings, discipline, child-rearing, patience, tidying the house, nurturing our marriage and more.

So, pretty much each week we have added one more of the above events while maintaining the previous activities begun before.  This coming week is the final add-on.  This week, Tracey starts preschool and I teach at the college -- in addition to all our other "normal" activities.

I will be honest, I'm pretty nervous.

We are stretched pretty thin at the moment, and I will admit to being more than mildly tired -- Hubby is too.  But, our minds and bodys are capable of a lot... so next week, we add a little more to our plate.

We have to maintain this for a few months... and then we begin dropping activities as fall sports season ends, Hubby completes graduate school (what an amazing day that will be!), and as our work lives become more routine.

That being said, please keep us in prayer this week.

This is one of those situations where I find myself thanking God so much for these amazing blessings and for providing us such an amazingly full life... while also wanting to pray that He not make it any more full because I'm not sure how many more blessings and activities I can take... -- I'm of course joking... mostly.

Saturday, August 27, 2016

When Mama Gets Hand-Foot-Mouth Disease

... Yes you read that title correctly.

What I learned over the summer is the internet is FULL of information about children having hand-foot-mouth disease, but there is very little information about when a mother gets it.

Some of the little, and very frustrating information that you might see online about a mother getting hand-foot-mouth disease includes the following:
  • Adults don't get hand-foot-mouth disease because their immune system fights it off
  • If they do get it, the cases are very mild
... Well, let me go on record... when a mama gets hand-foot-mouth disease, it is a horrible experience.
So, over the summer, Tracey, Howard, and Caroline each came down with a fever, about a day a part.  I never gave the fever a second thought -- they each had it one day, and each felt better the next day.  No big deal.  Kids get sick and rebound really quickly.
Then, about two days later, I came down with a fever.  No big deal, I probably picked up whatever they were passing around.
The same night that I got the fever, my throat started to hurt, and nursing began to hurt.  But, no big deal -- so I was coming down with a little virus, and the nursing thing was probably just the fact that the babies were teething.
My fever was gone the next day, but my throat got progressively worse over the next 48 hours.  It was so bad, I looked in my throat and saw, what looked like small white kanker sores all over the back of my throat forming a rainbow over my tonsils.  The sores hurt so much, I could eat or drink anything without severe pain.
While my mouth sores were getting worse and worse, nursing was getting more and more painful.
It wasn't until four or five days after my fever, when itchy red spots started appearing on the palms of my hands that we started really putting together what was happening to me.  Although, it took several hours because I thought I was having an allergic reaction on my hands to some dust or mold I might have come in contact with while I was helping pack my parents house.
When the same itchy red spots started appearing on my feet, we realized all of these symptoms were related -- the fever, the mouth sores, the hand spots, the feet spots -- and the nursing issues.
Since I was fighting an air-born virus, all I could do was treat the symptoms and wait it out (and home and pray that the children and Chris would not develop the same symptoms).
The mouth sores took over a week to heal and feel better.  The pain was excruciating.  I was so thankful none of our children got them because they would have been miserable.  The spots on my hands and feet took about five days to feel better and begin to heal.  The nursing issues took over a month to resolve.
Apparently, when you nurse, any sort of dermatitis or skin affliction can show up on a mother's breasts and nipples because they are so sensitive due to the nursing process.  That is what happened to me with hand-foot-mouth disease, and not only was it incredibly painful, it took the longest to heal because the area was aggravated so many times a day when I nursed both babies.
We think that maybe the kids picked it up in St. Louis, and each had very mild cases that resulted in a quick low-grade fever.  Then they passed it to me a few days later.  Thankfully none of Hubby or the children developed the symptoms I did.
It is with great relief that I can report, the virus seems to be fully out of my system -- hands, feet, mouth, and nursing but it was one of the worst illnesses I have ever experienced.
Mothers can and do get hand-foot-mouth disease, and they deserve a lot of help and sympathy when they do.

Friday, August 26, 2016


Sometimes I imagine a world where I could be in my pajamas, bathed, fed, clean, warm, and relaxed in bed at 7:30pm...

... Then I see these adorable faces, and I guess falling into bed dirty, hungry, exhausted, stressed and, what sometimes feels a tad psychotic at midnight isn't so bad.


Wednesday, August 24, 2016

26 Things

26 Things About Me
A- Age:  32
B- Biggest fear:  Danger and my children
C- Current time:  10:50pm
D- Drink you last had:  Water
E- Every day starts with:  Nursing two babies
F- Favorite song:  Moon River, Andy Williams
G- Ghosts, are they real?:  I don't know and I have not intention of exploring it
H- Hometown:  Norton Shores, Michigan
I- In love with:  My hubby and my children
J- Jealous of:  Women who are naturally thin
K- Killed someone?:   With kindness...
L- Last time you cried?:  This afternoon
M- Middle name:  Sanden after marriage... no middle name before that
N- Number of siblings:  two halves... which do not make a whole
O- One wish:  For my children's futures
P- Person you last called:  My Momma
Q- Questions you're always asked:  "Are they twins?"
R- Reason to smile:  My so many blessings
S- Song last sang:  "Family Tree" by Tom Chapman
T- Time you woke up:  4:28am
U- Underwear color:  None of your beeswax
V- Vacation Destination: Asia and Austrailia... eventually -- at present, a bed and breakfast without children... or Disney World with children
W- Worst habit: Oh... so many -- but worst is probably complaining
X- X-Rays you've had: Teeth and ultrasounds to look at babies
Y- Your favorite food:  Several -- pizza, steak, chocolate-chip cookies
Z- Zodiac sign:  Capricorn

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Cool To Realize and Remember

I follow a group on facebook called Twiniversity for parents of twins and multiples.  Sometimes they have funny posts or useful articles or just statements that make me realize that I am not alone on this crazy journey.

Yesterday, they posted the below picture and it was such a blessing to me to remember.

My body will never be the same after having carried and birthed our twins.  I would not trade that experience or them for anything... but I don't always see the changes in my body with the joyful memories I could.  This post helped change my perspective yesterday.

Monday, August 22, 2016