Thursday, March 22, 2012

Potty Trained!

This is the easiest girl.

above: she escaped on a rainy day outside in her panties and bunny hat. We had to chase her back inside.

She pretty much potty trained herself! ...about a month after her 2nd birthday.

She started several months ago, before her second birthday. She'd take her diaper off, go into the bathroom, but any time I tried to help her and get this thing done, she got mad. She wanted to do it ALL on her own. Finally, about two weeks ago, Cliff had to borrow my car, and since we were stuck at home all day, and since I was sick of picking up diapers all over the place that she decided to take off, I got tough with her and let her know I was helping her, and we were getting it done. By the end of the day, she seemed potty trained!

By day three, she seemed perfectly potty trained. She's had accidents here and there since, but I think it's more so my fault. Since she did it so effortlessly, I forget to remind her and ask her. Where with Stone [side note--you need to click on this link to see HOW much these two look alike. This is almost the exact age of each other], for two weeks, I felt like I was always hounding him to go potty (even though he did it pretty quickly, as well). Stone did great, too, but it took a lot of effort. was an ordeal. While with Emerson, it was just a walk in the park.

This girl is just so easy! I don't even think I ever mentioned giving up the binky! Soon after she turned one, we tried to use the binky only for nap and bed time. Just before we knew it was time to get rid of it completely (a month or two before her second birthday), she seemed to get more attached to it, and would go get it out of her crib any time she cried. We dreaded getting rid of it. Finally, we did it, made a big deal about it, let her throw it out, and BAAM. It was done. A rough first nap and bed time, but then all was fine and dandy. We were more worried about it than she was.

I hope she remains this easy to raise. We love her like crazy.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Pregnancy Musings

In case you missed our big announcement, here it is again...


We are adding to our family, and we are THRILLED! We are seriously so excited. We've been having some hilarious experiences with our kids lately, and I turned to Cliff, and said, "Eleven years ago [when we started dating!] did you have ANY idea we'd have this life?" It's awesome. AWESOME.

And here is the little babe-a-loo. I was so surprised how developed our little babe was after only a few weeks. This was at 9 weeks. We received a picture of a little peanut with our 8 week ultrasounds with Stone and Emerson. Perhaps the technology has improved.

Oh, and this is reason 876,456,344 among an infinite number, why I think abortions are absolutely wrong. Look here, this is a BABY! Many people don't even realize they are pregnant at this point...
So baby is set to arrive August 31. I guess another reason this baby seems more developed is that fact that the technician said baby was measuring about 9 days ahead of calculations. My original due date was actually September 9.

And here are some thoughts and things that have been going on related to baby #3.

*Stone's Reaction: We waited to tell Stone the news until the day we made it public (knowing he would tell every person in sight if we told him any sooner). HOWEVER, he had been praying for his baby brother (no, we do not know the gender yet) for about 2 months (remember--we hadn't told him!). In church, he even said the prayer in his primary class, and said, "Please bless my baby brother in mommy's tummy." Of course that had to be the week before we announced, so his teachers were obviously suspicious. Every prayer for 2 months, he asked for a blessing on the baby! The first time he said it, I asked him why he prayed for a baby in mommy's tummy, and he said, "Well Mommy, I know it takes a long time for the baby to get here, so I'm just praying about it so Heavenly Father knows we're ready." SWEET, right?!

*Gender Preference: For the first time in the 3 pregnancies, I can say I have NO preference WHATSOEVER. I think maybe we (expectant mothers) are afraid if we don't get what we want, we will feel guilty for not wanting that gender in the first place, and so more frequently we hear, "I don't care, as long as the baby is healthy!"...even though the two are unrelated, and most moms secretly have a preference.
Anyways...I have a boy, and I have a girl. With #1, I was a little torn. I really wanted a boy to lead the family. However, the Jessup line is known for producing an overwhelming amount of males in the line, and I feared we'd never have a girl--so that just about made me almost want a girl. I was legitimately torn in a preference on that pregnancy. I had strong desires on both sides. With #2, I REALLY wanted a girl. Of course I would have been happy either way.
THIS TIME--NO PREFERENCE on my account. However, Cliff would love another boy so that Emerson could have protection on both sides of her. Stone wants a boy. Emerson goes back and forth.

*Gender guess: I think I'm guessing boy, but I really have no intuition on this one. All 3 pregnancies have felt the same, and well...I actually thought I was pregnant with twins for many weeks, so I'm a little off on the whole, "oooh, I soooo know what I'm having."

*Health: Once again, I have been blessed with my mother's pregnancy symptoms, which means NONE! THANK YOU, MOM!!! Not once in my 3 pregnancies have I thrown up. The closest I get is when I accidentally gag myself while brushing my teeth. Then, it starts a wave of dry heave after dry heave.
I found this funny... a friend recently posted (on Facebook), how she is so sick of being sick in her pregnancy, and she doesn't understand the expectant mothers that love the fact they are sick....(I read this kind of thing all over the blogosphere and Facebook). I had a blast reading the many many comments saying they were among those happy ladies. I, on the other hand, am so grateful I have yet to find a comfy seat below my toilet.

*Cravings: Unfortunately, nothing fun to report. First trimester I really craved any kind of decadent appetizer. Like spinach and artichoke dip, cream cheese dip, etc. Other than that, in all 3, I've craved GOOD Mexican food like from home {El Paso}. ....with a limeade. Unfortunately, good Mexican food is nonexistent here, so that craving will not be met for a couple months.

*Exercise: I'm still teaching Zumba, Spin, and "Just Weights", and plan to until the end, unless any complications arise. Per doc's orders, as long as I am not straining, I am good. 
I was at the gym just about on my due dates with Stone and Emerson, and plan to be with this one! My day doesn't feel right without exercise. I HAVE to start my day off with it. Both docs with Emerson and Stone say my regular exercise helped with my healthy pregnancies and fast labors. We'll see if that holds true with #3. ...and it helped SO much getting back into shape, because it had only been a few weeks since I had exercised, instead of 9 months.

*Emerson's Reaction: She doesn't quite get it, but smiles ear to ear when we talk about it, and just goes back and forth between saying boy and girl when I ask her what she wants.

*Thunder Stolen: I guess by the time #3 comes around, it's hard to hide it. By the third time, people do the math between #1 and #2, and have it figured out before you even know you're pregnant. Here are just a few instances:
1. Thanks to a pocket dial to my sister-in-law Rachel, she heard a conversation between me and Cliff talking about setting up my first appointment, and called me out on being pregnant within weeks of us finding out. I hid the fact, thought she for sure knew, and although she says I convinced her otherwise, I'm pretty sure Jordan and Rachel knew from the get go.
#2. My mom had been asking for months if I've had morning sickness this time around, and I'd say, "I have to be pregnant to have morning sickness..." and would try to hide it, but she knew. She was fishing.
#3. Though I've had no symptoms, when I was a few weeks pregnant, I had some weird things happen at church. I felt like I almost was going to pass out, and unless I was being dramatic, I think my nose was numb. My friends that were around me, all said I had to be pregnant. Since when are those pregnancy symptoms?? Though I don't think it had anything to do with my pregnancy, they figured it out early, and were not surprised when I finally announced.
So much for hiding this pregnancy! The thunder of announcing this pregnancy was stolen on many accounts, but I don't mind.

Here's to a party of five. We are BEYOND THRILLED! Can't wait to meet you, baby!! We LOVE you already!!

Sunday, March 11, 2012

My Dad is tougher than yours. Period.

More on my BIG ANNOUNCEMENT next. But first, if we're not friends on Facebook, and you don't live in El Paso and watch the news, then you may have missed the horrific news regarding my dad's encounter with two vicious pit bulls. The story is here:


Though my dad has a road to recovery, he is healing, and has felt all the love, support, and prayers on his behalf. A friend of mine from El Paso is actually a news reporter here in East Texas. We went to church together in El Paso many years ago for a few years before her family moved away. We both ended up in this neck of the woods (small world!), and she saw the story on my Facebook page. She actually came to interview me on Friday, and I made the 6 o'clock news retelling the story of my dad.

You can read details in the news report, but I, for the record, think (and have always thought) that Pitbulls should NOT be pets. Under no circumstance. My opinion on this was not made by this attack alone; it was just confirmed. I've heard people say their Pitbull is different. Theirs would never hurt a fly. Theirs has been raised with love and kindness. BLAH-FREAKIN'-BLAH. When they get in a fight (not IF, WHEN), it's in their DNA to fight to the death. Criticize if you will, but I will not change my opinion on this.

My dad is tough, and had it been anyone else, I think we would be reading about a fatality. My dad has stamina, strength, and endurance, like no other man I know. Of course he came out of it, because he is my dad. I don't make light of the story AT ALL, I am just stating that my dad is a manly man.

There is no doubt in my mind that he had God's protection that night. We have a loving Heavenly Father, and I think it's clear it's not my dad's time to go. If you don't believe in God, the Eternal Father, I urge you to have faith to learn of his existence and truth. Because he is there, watching over every single one of us, and he knows each of us individually.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Party of Five.