Friday, December 25, 2009

A Christmas to Remember

Merry Christmas! 
On a normal Christmas day for us there would not be time for blogging. This year everything is a little different. I've had time to sit and enjoy the snow/sleet/rain falling outside while listening to Christmas music, and watching Little Women. We kept our family tradition on Christmas Eve of going to my grandparents for supper and presents. I followed my "bed rest" orders by sitting as much as possible. As we left there, Mom reminded me that it would be my first Christmas Eve ever to not spend the night at their house. 

Today we woke up with an unusually slow paced day. Mike and I exchanged gifts, and enjoyed watching the boys play with their new squeaky toys. We took time to watch the snow fall and enjoy an Alabama white Christmas, even if nothing stayed white.  Mike's family came to our house this afternoon. He and his mom cooked and we exchanged presents.  Then we were off to my parents tonight. We were all too full to eat very much, but had a great time nibbling and opening presents. It was our niece's  first Christmas, and she has  been so much fun to watch.  It's also wonderful to think that this time next year paper will be flying at our house as our almost one year old has his first Christmas. It's been a great holiday season, even if it did go by very fast.

Tomorrow is our day back to the hospital. We are suppose to take our bags, so maybe we'll be staying. Brennan didn't make it for Christmas day, but hopefully by New Year's.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Changes Are A Comin'

This morning was our 38 week doctor's appointment. My doctor is off this week, so I saw one of the other doctors in the group. The appointment started with my weight being down a little, a good sign that we will have a baby soon. Then my blood pressure was up. After answering several questions, I had a lay down for a few minutes and then they checked again. The doctor came in immediately and said I had just gotten a ticket to labor and delivery. My blood pressure was still up and he wanted more tests to see what was going on. He thought there was a good chance we would be staying. I went over, had blood work, found out I was actually having contractions but couldn't feel them, and got the results that I seemed to be preeclamptic again. The nurse didn't want me to drink anything or even have ice because she wasn't sure how soon the doctor would want to do something, or what might be coming. To all of our surprise I think, the doctor on call came in and said I could go home and stay on the sofa. He said if it weren't two days before Christmas and if I were 39 weeks he would probably keep me, but he would like to wait one more week if possible. Somehow these words didn't really gain my confidence given how fast this had happened again. On our way home the doctor I saw first called back to say he didn't want to wait that long. He wants us back Saturday morning, and suggested we bring our bags. In the meantime, I'm suppose to stay on the sofa as much as possible. I'm not real good at being still, or being taken care of so I'm told, so I'm glad it's only a few days. It will definitely be a Christmas to remember.

HO! HO! HO! Merry Christmas!

It's the time of year when Mike gets to wear a second hat, and perform one of his favorite jobs. He is Santa Claus at the church where I grew up and my mom attends. This is the second year he has dressed up. He loves it, and the kids do too, most of them at least. Only one wasn't so sure about Santa this year, the one who actually knows him best, our niece. It's really fun to see Mike sneaking around with the costume so no kids see it, and making sure he looks authentic.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Doctor's Visit

Yesterday was my 37 week doctor's appointment. Brennan is now officially full term and could come anytime! We found out that he is head down, but still pretty high. Dr. M. decided it was time to find out just how big he is. We haven't had an ultrasound since twenty something weeks when we found out he is a boy.  When I've asked previously about his weight, Dr. M. has said that he's right on target for his gestation age and was on track to be around 7 lbs. I've been picturing this tiny little baby that looks swallowed by newborn clothes. Imagine my surprise when the tech said Brennan is measuring 8 lbs. 13 ozs.! I asked if she could check again, and she snickered," I already have three times." We really couldn't tell much about how he looks at all, he was so squished up. I began immediately thinking ok maybe we'll set a date to get this started, or maybe I'll have a c-section. We waited for Dr. M. to see the results. He sent the nurse back to say they would see us next week. That wasn't exactly what I had in mind. So, we continue to wait and wonder just how big he actually is. Mike's prediction for his birthday has now come and gone. I keep telling him it will be January 7th, since Mike's second obsession of the moment will happen that day: the National Championship. Actually, I'm hoping for sometime before New Year's.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009


Boys! Boys! Boys! The four legged ones struck again today. When I got home we had two plumbers that were at the house to check out our gas logs and heat. They had let themselves in at Mike's direction. Apparently Wells did not approve. While they went into the attic to check the heat, Wells pottied once again all around the house. He chose to stay on the hardwood this time, so at least it just meant mopping. He had not done this in over a year until last week, and now a second time already. Later I discovered that Buster stuck by his brother and pottied in his room also. That came after the attached picture. I think Wells might have chosen to stay on the hardwood so that I would stay out of the living room. There he was hiding his second surprise of the day. He had chewed the side of one bookcase in the living room. My granddaddy built these bookcases several years ago, and they were around long before Wells. He has never offered to bother them. He has, in his puppy days, chewed a few other items, but that was years ago. I was shocked to find his mess. Unfortunately, Granddaddy isn't doing woodworking anymore so I'll be looking for someone to repair this piece. In the mean time, Wells and Buster may be interviewing at boarding schools. They are lucky that I love them so much, but I have to say I'm questioning how I'm going to handle their antics when the little brother comes. In the mean time, it looks like they'll continue to provide plenty of practice in patience.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

What a Week!

I've officially decided this week has whooped me already! It started OK on Monday. Tuesday was another story. Tuesday night was our PTO meeting, and the 5th graders performed. They did a great job, but it made for a very long day. Those days are the only time I really don't like working so far from home. I drove home in the pouring rain and high winds. I got home at 8:30 and spent a few minutes catching up with Mike, and was thinking of an early bedtime. About 9:00 Buster decided he wanted to go outside. When I opened the back door, the floor literally flooded. Rain was falling so hard it was running over the gutters, under the gutters, around the gutters, and into every crack and crevice it could find. Mike decided he should go out and check on things. Good thing he did! A couple of minutes later he called me to the basement to see if his office was flooded. Water had pushed debris over the drain outside the basement doors. The water had risen above the doors already. Luckily it had not come inside yet. He was able to uncover the drain and move the water before we had damage. He continued to fight water in the backyard for an hour or so. While there wasn't much I could do to help, I couldn't exactly go to sleep either, so it made for a late night. 

I thought maybe we would have a delay for flooding, but no such luck. Wednesday went well, but I was exhausted. All I wanted was to come home and lay down for awhile. I left school as soon as I could and came straight home. As soon as I walked up the stairs I knew something was not right. The boys had created their own flood! Wells had pottied all over the living room, dining room, and kitchen. He rarely ever has an accident, but when he does it is a huge mess. He gets so nervous that he just runs around while pottying. I guess Buster wanted to make him feel better, so he also pottied in his room. I wanted to just sit down and cry, but I sent them outside, messaged Mike to share the family news, and started mopping. Well, the house got a surprise cleaning including the carpets. Unfortunately, I didn't have any of my "nesting" energy to get it done. Now just two more days to finish this long week. Hopefully it will finish stronger than it has started. Right now I think I'll put my huge feet up and find something fun to watch. 

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Football Season

Auburn vs. Mississippi State
UNA vs. Carson Newman
Football is one of the passions Mike and I share. We spent many great weekends this fall enjoying high school and college football. The majority of our Friday nights were spent at Falkville High School watching my alma mater. Falkville football has always been a big part of my life. I cheered there in high school, my brother played, and the field is named for my grandfather. I had only been to a few games since I graduated from college. Mike was actually the one urging us to the games this year. He liked the small town atmosphere, meeting people I've known forever, and having a place to be on Friday night. While I can't say I was always excited to leave the comforts of home at the end of the week to sit on hard bleachers, it was nice to reconnect with the past a little bit.
Saturdays were my favorite. I am a lifelong Auburn Tiger! Mike is a Bama fan. We both love SEC football in general. Every Saturday was spent watching our teams. We started the season by decorating the dining room buffet with Aubie and Big Al bobble heads, putting AU and UA collars on the dogs and flying a house divided flag in the front yard. Mike, and his giving soul, bought tickets to two Auburn games. Mike, Mom, and I went to the Auburn vs. Mississippi State game and homecoming vs. Furman. Mike even wore Auburn gear, though he doesn't like to admit it in front of anyone else. We also went to one UNA game at the beginning of the season. We ended the season with our rivalry. Of course Mike's team won, but mine was pretty awesome. I don't think I've ever felt so happy after a loss. Yesterday was the big SEC championship game. Mike was super excited, and very proud that I agreed to wear his Alabama jersey for the day. We made a big deal out of the game, and he is still floating from the win. Now he is encouraging Brennan to get here in plenty of time for the National Championship game Jan. 7th. I'm sad to see the season come to an end, but look forward to many years of family football Saturdays. As we settle into our house more, we want to make it a gathering place to watch games. Look for an invite next season!

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Our Blog-Take Two

Well, after five months on hiatus I'm ready to blog again. I had planned to chronicle our progress on the house and my pregnancy. Unfortunately, both those events at once took priority and I haven't made any progress on blogging. With four weeks, or maybe less, to go before little Brennan Abbott arrives I want to get in the habit.

So to catch up: It's A Boy! Brennan Abbott is due on January 5th. We are so ready for him to get here. Mike's predicting December 15th for his early arrival. We have the nursery ready. Last weekend I bought a couple of 1st Christmas things just in case. Yes, I know I probably guaranteed him to come later but I couldn't resist any longer. My pregnancy has been relatively easy and uneventful. We did have an early hospital visit about three weeks ago because my blood pressure was up, but after hours of test our doctor decided everything was fine.

As for the house, we have gotten a lot of things back up to par. The yard looks much better with all the flower beds mulched and new shrubs. Mike has worked endlessly this fall on projects. The main rooms are painted. I think my eye for color has been a little off, so I'm ready to change a couple of rooms already. There have been several surprises along the way. The master bedroom had a leak in the front wall, so all the sheet rock had to be torn out. The carpet also had to go. It turned into a large project quickly, one that we will finish in the spring possibly. One Sunday afternoon there was a knock at the door. A man asked to leave his card for a tree trimming business. He noticed we had huge pecan trees that needed trimming. After taking his card, I went out back to join Mike and the boys at the pool. I was telling him about the guy when I noticed something looked strange. I walked around to the other side of the yard to find that the huge tree in the back had broken. A large limb was laying across our fence and in our neighbors yard. The tree trimming guy got his first job from us. We were actually very thankful he had stopped that day. He did a great job, was reasonably priced (if tree trimming can be that), and we were able to take care of the problem quickly to keep happy neighbors. The house is now on hold while we focus on becoming parents. I have two weeks and two days left of work, and will then be home for the semester. We'll start back once I'm back at work.

That's a little glimpse of what's gone on the last few months. More to come later!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Catching Up

WOW, where has the last month and a half gone! For me, the first month was spent battling exhaustion and morning sickness. Yep, our family is growing by one tiny baby in January! We are elated to finally be parents! We found out on April 27th that we are expecting, but decided to wait to share the news until after our first doctor's appointment on May 27th. So far, we have names picked out and a crib. 

The time I was awake, and any free time that Mike had, was spent packing and preparing for our big move. We moved into the Hartselle house the first weekend in June. Life has been a whirlwind of activity and work ever since. With the wonderful help of family and friends, we have painted all but the master  bedroom/bath on the first floor. Mike has put in new light fixtures, and gotten a horribly dirty pool up and running. We are now having the master bathroom minorly redone, and trying to finish sprucing up in time to entertain on the 4th of July. My next project is to try to slow summer down and enjoy a few fun days. 

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Ups and Downs

It has been a very eventful week! After three days on the sofa, my back is feeling rather normal. The two days back to school were not too bad, although we are no longer counting down the days until summer. Who knows when it will arrive? Today was a fun day. Mike and I had lunch at Five Guys, then went to the hospital. Our friends Chris and Kacie had baby Connor yesterday, so we got to see him. After the visit, we shopped for Mother's day gifts and groceries. As we finished shopping, our realtor called to say someone wanted to see the house. She ended up putting in an offer tonight! We had hoped it would go fast the second time around, but WOW we didn't expect it to be that fast. No complaints here though. We will be accepting it with a few changes. So hopefully we are back on track to move to Hartselle, and enjoy our pool this summer!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

What A Day!

Today has been one of those days that I should have slept through! I ended up in great pain from my back, so I stayed home from school while everyone else went back after the Swine Flu break. The doctor did call in stronger meds so I'm starting to feel better. This afternoon we found out that our house sell fell through. Our buyer had a problem with the sell of their house, so now we are back to square one. We had already packed a lot of boxes since we were suppose to move next week. My amazing, darling husband has spent the evening unpacking enough stuff to make the house look good again, and sprucing up everything. I could only supervise, and cheer him on. I am so thankful for his love and patience. Hopefully the house we want to buy will wait for us, since it wasn't actually on the market. I think it's time to go to bed and start again tomorrow.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Top Dog

After my wonderful husband cleaned house yesterday, and I rested to try to relieve the pain from a pulled back muscle, we decided it was time to get serious about disciplining Buster. Buster is a 6 year old poodle. He has become very difficult to deal with on a daily basis. He steals anything he can get his mouth on, growls and snaps if we scold him, and then becomes aggressive toward Wells ( the Lab twice Buster's size).  After a little research, we've realized Buster thinks he's Alpha dog in our house. We started by keeping him off all furniture, and making him sit or follow some command to get to do anything. So far, he seems to realize changes are in place. He walked around looking dazed and defeated for most of the day. Now the trick is to continue changing our behavior, and stay consistant while he realizes his place in our family. Wow, it's good practice for kids I'm sure!

Sunday, May 3, 2009

A Rainy Sunday

We have had a pretty quiet rainy Sunday. Mike and I tried Another Broken Egg Cafe in Jones Valley for brunch. It was really good. We both had egg dishes, and then shared the monster cinnamon roll. I found out on our way home that I may not go back to work until May 14th because Harvest has a case of Swine Flu. I have mixed emotions about this. While I'm glad they're being cautious, and hope everyone is ok, I'm a little concerned about how this will affect our school year. With our possible upcoming move in a few weeks, it could all become a little tricky to navigate. Oh well, I'll just go along for the ride!

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Our First Blog

Welcome to the Swafford family blog! As our family life changes, I decided it would be a great time to begin recording all the excitement in a blog. Our family includes my husband Mike, myself, and our two dogs Buster and Wells. Mike and I have been married for 6 months. We are anxiously awaiting news on whether or not we will be moving in a few weeks. We have an offer on our house, which is currently on hold while our buyers work some things out, and have a contract on our "dream house" in Hartselle. I have just enjoyed two unexpected days off from my job as a 5th grade teacher. School was canceled because of the threat of Swine Flu.