Sunday, September 27, 2015

1 month old!

Henry is one month old today!  Has it really been that long already?  Deputation is definitely different with a newborn! Henry has done well.  He eats well.  He sleeps well – through the night for the last several nights already!  But there is one thing about being a deputation baby that Henry does not like very much…his car seat!  Thursday was a long day for him.  He’s fine until the buckles click.  He just likes to be held!  So today he got spoiled being held the entire church services in the nuseries!

Henry 1 Month Old
Henry and his Mozzie bear from Grandma Hamilton

Henry 1 Month Old

Henry 1 Month Old  Henry 1 Month Old

Henry 1 Month Old
Looks like a little man!

Henry 1 Month Old
The oldest and the youngest.  Right now I have five kids five and under.  Only for about another month!
{No – not getting rid of any of them.  Elaine’s turning six!}

This was one of our busier Sundays.  We were at one church this morning.  We had a whirlwind pack up and check out of the hotel, and then a short drive to get to the next church for the evening service.  Henry did great with all of the commotion today!

He’s pretty predictable at just one month.  He eats, he burps, he gets changed!  Then he’s happy.  He really does not like having anything in his diaper!  All that eating means a good amount of growing too.  We are almost out of all newborn clothing!

There are a lot of little socks and endless piles of laundry right now!

Friday, September 25, 2015

A Day in the Life

I don’t consider myself to be experienced at this missionary or deputation thing.  Maybe I should…we’ve been doing it for two years now.  I am always looking for a way to improve our packing or reduce what we take inside a church or streamline the process.  But I still feel like we have so much to learn!

Yesterday we left our temporary home for most of the next six months.  We will pop back in for a day or two here and there as we have a couple of meetings in Upstate NY or New England.  It was definitely not the smoothest day of getting out of the house, but it was probably one of the more peaceful days! 

Just to give you a glimpse into life as a missionary, or maybe I should just say life as a mom of five little people – on the road!

We intended to leave at 5:00 a.m.  We had a 15 hour drive to get to Georgia.  While we were splitting it between two days, our conference starts on the second day.  We wanted to leave as little driving as possible for that second day so we could arrive fresh and on time.  At 4:30 a.m. a little person (who shall remain anonymous) came in to say that another little person had wet the bed.  So we were up and running, now with a load of wash to get done before departure.  Problem: water pressure difficulties in our temp house mean you can’t shower and run the washer at the same time!

The kids have been sick or getting sick for a week.  The day before departure both Ben and I felt the sore throat coming on.  We awoke yesterday with an even worse sore throat, and no voice.

I tried to begin potty training the twins when we came home in August so that they might be done before deputation resumed.  It was an epic fail.  However, two days before departure Nehemiah decided to begin potty training.  He has done great – no accidents except night time.  BUT…I didn’t intend to travel with a potty chair in the van!

While we were cleaning up the night before departure, Liberty was teasing Daddy while he was vacuuming.  It was all fun and games, until she got too close, too fast and Daddy vacuumed over her foot.  She has a stripe down the top of her foot that is missing a layer of skin.  Too big for a bandaid, and she is having trouble leaving the tape and gauze and sock in place.

We got everyone loaded and out the door by 6 a.m.  The van battery was dead so Ben had to jump it from the Camry (which is usually the one with the bad battery).  This all took some extra time.  The kids were supposed to sleep the first couple of hours, but we were too close to normal wake-up time, and they had been awake too long due to the bed incident.  (I slept, though!)

Henry is four weeks old now.  He is an amazing sleeper.  It’s not a habit yet, but he has already slept through the night several times.  He sleeps most of the day.  BUT…he hates his car seat.  He doesn’t seem to sleep well in it, and he doesn’t like being buckled down.  So he cried a lot while we were driving yesterday.

We had a lovely breakfast.  Ben stopped for cheap gas in NJ and there was a Chick-fil-A!  We were the only ones in the restaurant, and the kids got to play a bit in the playplace.  Breakfast stop took us about an hour.

We had a picnic lunch at a rest stop.  I had packed sandwiches and the kids enjoyed eating outside, catching ladybugs, and ripping legs off of spiders.  It was all great until Nehemiah got to his applesauce cup and helped himself.  Applesauce, all over his pants.  Cleanup left wet pants, which he cried about until supper time (off and on).

For supper we stopped at a Subway to try and let the traffic approaching Charlotte subside a little bit.  Liberty bent over to inspect the good old NC red dirt, and stuck her hands right in it.  Cleanup ensued.

Once inside the restaurant, Ben had Nolan in the potty, I was holding a fussy Henry, and Nehemiah was trying to kiss Henry.  He was standing in his chair, but reached to grab the baby (I had told him not to), leaned too far, and knocked over the chair backwards.  A heavy metal chair.  Scratched all the way down Mommy’s legs.  Nehemiah also did not want a sandwich for supper and boycotted the meal until we were almost ready to leave. 

We finally made it to our hotel around 10:30 p.m.  We came in the side door and let the kids walk the steps to expend a little bit of energy.  Nolan ran ahead, but I asked him to stop at #5.  I got to the fifth level, and there was no Nolan.  I called, and he let out very loud war whoops from the sixth floor.  So much for a quiet entry!

There were fights and disagreements (too loud for a hotel room late at night) over who got the couch bed and who got the regular bed.  Henry sprawled out on the bed and went to sleep in all of this!  He was just glad to be out of his carseat!

We fell into bed very tired.  BUT, Liberty had slept in the car and she was not ready to sleep.  I recall that I heard her touching the phone and I got up, half asleep, to take it from her.  That was not to be the end.  A few minutes later there was knocking on our door.  We weren’t sure it was our door, until the third knock.  It was a hotel staff member, asking if we were okay because our room had called 9-1-1! 

Just after falling asleep again, the alarm clock beeped.  It was midnight and probably one of my kids had set it to go off.  But being mostly asleep, I couldn’t find the off button!

During the day we watched three movies, Ben listened to part of an audiobook by G.A. Henty.  I listened to three podcasts during my driving time.  We filled two bags with trash, stopped for gas three times, and changed multiple diapers.  Thankfully though, we only sat in one traffic jam!  (That’s a miracle!)

Keeping them busy in the hotel – dry the bibs with a hair dryer!

School work in the hotel before departure.  This will be one of the most challenging aspects of travel for me this fall – school on the road.

The rest of the night did go without incident.  But that is just a glimpse into life on the road.  Hopefully you were able to laugh at my expense.  Nothing too tragic happened, and I’m still learning to learning to roll with the punches.  It’s definitely never dull around here!

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Henry’s First Sink Bath

We definitely have fifth child syndrome going on around here.  The flurry that has been our life over the last three weeks – new baby, packing, moving, settling, starting homeschool, and prepping for another 3 months on the road – means my camera has stayed in its bag, and the “big” moments of having a new baby have not been such a big deal.  And blogging about those moments?  Non existent.  But I DO have a few pictures of Henry, and I’m glad I got those newborn shots done before the move! Now that he is three weeks old (!) perhaps I should let you know…he did get a bath.  A few of them, even!  Not as many as his siblings had by this age, but he is a clean, sweet smelling baby.  Here are some shots of Henry’s first real bath.  I had the twins in the tub at the time to keep a few fingers from getting too touchy-feely, yet they could still see and be a part of what was going on.

Henry Tad 1st Sink Bath
Liberty was there – just totally uninterested!

Henry Tad 1st Sink Bath
Nolan washed the back…

Henry Tad 1st Sink Bath
Elaine washed the front…

Henry Tad 1st Sink Bath
Henry got clean!

Monday, September 14, 2015

Henry’s Newborn Pictures

I managed to squeeze these in last week before our move.  I guess it helps that I have done it several times, so setting up was fast, and Henry is a super easy-going baby who made snapping pictures a breeze!

Henry Tad Newborn Portraits
This wasn’t one of the “outfits” I had purchased or prepared for pictures, but the dark color sure looks nice with his hair! 

Henry Tad Newborn Portraits
This is a favorite…

Henry Tad Newborn Portraits
One day, I will get to do cloth diapers again.  I bought this cover just for these pictures!

Henry Tad Newborn Portraits

Henry Tad Newborn Portraits

Henry Tad Newborn Portraits
My favorite one…

Henry Tad Newborn Portraits
Little toes!

Henry Tad Newborn Portraits   Henry Tad Newborn Portraits

Henry Tad Newborn Portraits
This was supposed to be his “coming home” outfit, but it was a little too big!  It’s the one new item that I purchased for Henry’s wardrobe.  The rest are all from his big brothers!

Henry Tad Newborn Portraits
I guess I just have something for little baby feet!

Henry Tad Newborn Portraits

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Welcome Home Henry

We came home from the hospital on Saturday afternoon.  The kids were ecstatic and had prepared with balloons, flowers, and cards for Baby Henry.  When they came to get me at the hospital, the twins were asleep.  So they didn’t know what had happened until we arrived home.
Even the twins made a card.  Nehemiah couldn’t wait to shove it in Henry’s car seat!  There are seven balloons – one for each member of our family!
Henry wore his pinstripes home.  I know they’re not blue…we have to ease into this Yankee’s fan thing a little at a time!
We started at one end and worked our way down…Elaine was ecstatic!
Kisses for Henry
Nehemiah really struggled to keep his hands off the baby – and his lips too!
Liberty, on the other hand, wanted nothing to do with him.  (She didn’t touch him until today, three days later!)
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Proud siblings

Henry is Here

We are excited to announce our newest model:

Henry Thaddeus “Tad” Hamilton
Thursday, August 27, 2015 at 6:21 a.m.
8 pounds, 21 inches long

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He was born after about 13 hours of labor, and has a full head of dark hair.

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Right after birth, I was able to enjoy some skin-to-skin contact with Henry for about 45 minutes.  This is the first time I was able to do this with one of my babies!  Elaine was an emergency c-section who had to be examined immediately after birth, Nolan had the cord wrapped around his neck and needed to have the mucous suctioned from his mouth, and the twins were each whisked away for examination.

IMG_5293For each of my Brooklyn pregnancies I have had the same midwife (coincidentally – they work rotating shifts) deliver all three of the kids.  I told Jen that the other kids were born on a Thursday, and she said “I’m not at the hospital on a Thursday until the 27th.”  Since I was due the 20th and convinced I would go early, I told her “I’m not waiting that long.”  Little did I know…I arrived at the hospital around 12:30 a.m. on the 27th.  Lora delivered Henry at 6:21 a.m. – 39 minutes before Jen arrived to begin her shift!

The only complications we had were an unorganized hospital staff that dropped the ball and lost my paperwork through every crack imaginable.  Henry also had a slightly high bilirubin reading and had to spend several hours under the U/V lights, which meant we spent an extra night in the hospital.

IMG_5303 IMG_5304 IMG_5309

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Grandma (my mom) was here to help with the baby since I assumed I would go “on time” as I did with the other three pregnancies.  We spent our week waiting for contractions instead of holding a baby and packing boxes (we squeezed in some ice cream and a trip to Coney Island too).  So…Grandma only got to see Henry at the hospital.  She hasn’t been able to see any of the grands this little since Elaine, so even though time with him was short, I know she is glad he made his appearance before her departure.