Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Today Morgan Kate got to meet her new teachers.
Morgan Kate and Mrs. Watson
I know this one is blurry, but just look at the way MK is gazing up at her. I love it!
Morgan Kate and Mrs. Pollok - I taught Mrs. Pollok's daughter several years ago.
Each student was given a special time to come and meet the teachers with several other students. Morgan Kate and Andrew, her friend from Roddey's, are in the same class and had the same time. They are such a cute little pair and really enjoy playing together. Today was no different.
Andrew checking out the class pets, Splish and Splash.
I wasn't able to go, but Travis and Roddey went and took so many pictures for me. I was so thankful. As you can see, Morgan Kate had no problem making herself at home.

I still can't get over that tomorrow my baby girl goes to "school". How does this happen so fast?

Morgan Kate loved every minute and when it was time to leave she cried because she wanted to stay. Tomorrow is her first "real day" and I will be there to walk her in. Tune back in tomorrow for pictures of my "school girl". Praying I keep it together!

Monday, August 29, 2011

Tonight was Parent Orientation Night at Morgan Kate's new preschool. I wasn't sure how I would do. Let's face it, I'm way emotional, especially when it comes to her. I did find myself welling up a few times, maybe only twice actually, but it  wasn't sadness at all. Instead? Pure happiness and excitement. I LOVE her preschool and I'm so excited about where she is going to be. She is going to absolutely love it! 

The moment I walked into the room I knew it was the place for her. I just sat there and imagined her playing at all of the centers, working on her artwork and singing silly songs. The instant I met the teachers I knew it was a perfect fit for not only Morgan Kate, but myself as well. I know they are going to love my girl and take the best care of her. It also makes my heart happy that one of the teachers is the parent of a child I taught several years ago. I could not be happier!

Wednesday morning Travis will take her to "Meet the Teacher". Thursday morning she will have her very first day of preschool. Between now and then Travis and I have some homework to complete. And somewhere in there we need to work on convincing ourselves that our baby girl is old enough for "big school". It's going to be a busy week, but an AWESOME one! 

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Dear Morgan Kate,

Today you are three. It literally takes my breath away to type that. Wow. Three years. Where has the time gone? I was talking with your daddy earlier today and I said, "Can you believe our baby is three?" I can't. But, you are. Some days your birth day seems like years ago and other days it seems like just yesterday. I think I will always feel that way. I can't help but look at your precious little face and think about that day and all the feelings I felt. I can't help but look at you and just sit in awe at the miracle you are. And I can't help but thank God over and over for your amazing life.

At age three you are into everything. You are talking like crazy. Asking questions and repeating everything. Your favorite questions are, "Why?" and "Who that, Mommy?" You are talking so well and it just makes me smile. You are still wearing size 5 diapers. I think you have been in size five for almost a year now or at least it seems that way. One day you will wear big girl undies. I know you will, but right now I am not stressing out about all of that. You are wearing mostly 2T clothes, but I know 3Ts are right around the corner. You wear a size 6 shoe. Small, small feet you have. You hate waking up early and love staying up late. You get it honest, baby girl. You love milk, water and apple juice and an occasional sip of my sweet tea. Your favorite foods are pizza, spaghetti, macaroni (which you call mackawicki) and any fruit or veggie. You could eat your weight in fruit. You like boiled peanuts as much as your mommy. And that's a lot. You can be the sweetest thing ever, but you can also be so dramatic. Lately, on a few occasions, I have wondered where my girl was. You still nap during the day for about two hours, some days more and some days less. You need a good 12+ hours of sleep at night. Some nights you stay in your crib and other nights you end up in bed with us. Yes, you still sleep in a crib and you will until you climb out of it. So far, that has happened. You love playing pretend - pretend babies, pretend puppies, pretend cooking, pretend doctor. You have quite the imagination. You and Dabba (your imaginary friend) still hang out a lot, but I'm not sure how much longer Dabba is going to hang around. You blame everything on her and I'm sure she doesn't appreciate that. You love, love, love reading books and building things with your blocks. You also really like to put things into order by size or color. You are still the dancing and singing queen. I love it. You're starting preschool in just a few weeks and I'm not sure how my heart feels about that. I love to see you growing and changing, but it's emotional all at the same time. You adore Roddey and all of your friends there and you talk about them all of the time. Your daddy and I feel like the luckiest parents in the world to have someone like Roddey in our lives. She is truly an answer to our prayers and we are so, so thankful for her and her entire family. You are a very loving little girl and you tell everyone that you love them. It may sound silly to some, but I know that you do love people, all people, because your heart is just that big. We could all learn to love a little more like you do. You can count to ten with some assistance. You usually leave out 1 and 2 and then get the rest right. You can say your ABCs with some assistance, but on your own you just repeat "ABC, ABC, ABC" over and over and over. Your favorite song is still "Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star" and you also really like "Jesus Loves Me". At age three I would consider you to be a "mommy/daddy girl". You enjoy being together with both of us, but you also enjoy your one on one time with us and we love giving it to you.

Morgan Kate, I want you to always know how much your daddy and I love you. You truly are our everything and the light of our lives. We are so very thankful for you and your precious life. And we can't wait to see what big things God has in store for you!

Happy 3rd birthday, baby girl!
I love you,

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Three years ago this very day I was lying in a hospital bed visiting with family and friends. I pretended to smile to all who entered that room and put on my very best brave face for most of the day, all the while scared beyond measure of what might happen to my baby. I went to bed that night, with my mom by my side, not knowing that my entire world would change the very next day. Not knowing that my baby girl would make her grand entrance. Not knowing that she would arrive weighing only one pound and twelve ounces. Not knowing that it would be days before I could hold her or feed her. Not knowing that it would be months before I could take her home. Not knowing that once we got home we would be quarantined for months and that she would need OT, PT, speech and numerous doctor's appointments for a while after all of that. 
It's a night and a day, an entire month for that matter, that will never, ever be erased from my mind. I went to bed that night hoping and praying that my body would cooperate. Hoping and praying that I could hold off labor until at least week 28 or better yet week 32 and maybe, just maybe week 40. A December baby. A winter baby. A full term baby. I think a lot about who I was that night and how I feel so differently today. I'm not the same person I was three years ago. Not at all. But, I'm okay with that. Three years later, on this side of things, I can even say I'm thankful not to be the same person.
My outlook on life is much, much different. I feel like I have a different perspective on things that I might not have otherwise had. I try to be more positive. I try to appreciate and soak in every single minute and every single milestone. I try not get caught up in the small stuff and there is so. much. small stuff. I try not to compare Morgan Kate to anyone other than herself. I try not to compare myself as a mother to anyone else. I try to look at every angle to every situation. I try to think before I speak. My heart is softer. Much softer. And it's all because of her. My Morgan Kate. And because of her daddy, the absolute love of my life. The two of them have made me such a better person. 

No, I didn't ever imagine that my baby would be born premature. I never imagined wondering if my baby would live or die. I never imagined that she would weigh less than two pounds. I never imagined the worry and fear I would have for her precious little life. I never imagined all the appointments and therapies and medications. But I also never imagined that someone so small could change my life in such a big way. I am so, so thankful for her and all that she is. She is my little miracle.

Monday, August 22, 2011

I'm still here. I have bags under my eyes, a "to-do" list ten miles long and dishes piling up in the sink, but I'm still here. We are still here. Just adjusting to our new back to school routine. And while it's been so much easier this year emotionally, it's been so much harder physically. I just can't seem to get it all done and in a timely fashion. Whewh.

In order to play catch up, I will use a bulleted list:
-So far I think I have a really good class. Super sweet and super excited about learning. Most of the time.
-We celebrated Morgan Kate's third birthday this past weekend with a "Very Hungry Caterpillar" party. Pictures to come. MK was so excited and just soaked in everything. It was so much fun just watching her. I can't believe my baby is turning three. Wow.
-Today I went to MK's new preschool and filled out an enormous packet of information. Okay, so it wasn't enormous, but it was a lot or at least it felt that way. It felt so weird filling it out and thinking about her being in "school". Not sure if my heart is ready for this. While we were there we met her teacher. So, so excited about her teacher. Also while we were there, MK found these colored worms and began sorting them by colors. Another teacher nearby was quite impressed with her color sorting skills. I, of course, was impressed as well. Smart, smart girl. Next week we have parent orientation and meet the teacher.

I promise to incorporate pictures into my next post. Promise.

Oh, and a special "Happy Birthday" to one of our miracle friends, Agus! Happy 3rd birthday, sweet girl!!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

August brings with it so many emotions. If you have read this blog for any amount time, you will know that August always brings forth many emotions and I talk about it every August. During this hot, summer month I turn another year older which could make anyone emotional. School starts back and I must return to work, which brings much excitement and anticipation, but also some sadness as I hate to see the summer end and my days with Morgan Kate come to a close. But more than any of that, my baby turns a year older and that brings forth emotions and feelings that take me back to August of 2008. When my baby girl was born 15 weeks early at only 25 weeks and 4 days gestation, weighing only one pound and twelve ounces. The month of August brings such a mixture of feelings. One minute fear and anxiety, another minute pride and admiration. In the next instance amazement and astonishment and in another sadness and guilt. It can be quite overwhelming. I find myself replaying every day and every event that led up to Morgan Kate's birth. August 14th, a Thursday in 2008, was the day I found out I was dilated and 50% effaced. August 18, a Monday, was the day my membranes ruptured and I was admitted to the hospital for the duration of the pregnancy. And then August 24, a Sunday, when my placenta ruptured and Morgan Kate made her grand entrance at 1:04pm.

Today is August 18th. And while I have lots of things going on in this head of mine that pertain to MK's birth and hospital stay and just all the things she had to endure, I'm also thinking about some other special children. Children that I will have the pleasure and responsibility of teaching this school year. Today is their first day of school. And I know they are anxious and excited and jittery with emotions. But so am I. I want to be the best teacher I can be. I want them to learn. I want them to grow. I want them to become wonderful writers and readers and mathematicians and historians. I want them to feel loved and valued and appreciated. I think I've always been a pretty decent teacher, but since having Morgan Kate and returning to work, I think I am a much better teacher or at least I strive to be. I imagine her in a classroom. I imagine what I would want for her. What I would want her to learn and experience. And how I would want her teacher to treat her. I would want many things, but two things especially. I would want her to LEARN and I would want her to feel LOVED. And those are the two things I want to give my new students today and this entire school year. 

Thank you, Morgan Kate. Thank you for making me a better person and a better teacher. 

Welcome to the 2011-2012 school year! I'm ready for you! (I think.)

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Morgan Kate sings "Happy Birthday". Not to me or to herself, but to her daddy who celebrated a birthday last month. It's just too cute not to share. And yes, I know, she has a lot of energy. A LOT.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011


School has started back and I just haven't found that chunk of time that I once used for blogging. I know it's going to get better and easier, but right now I'm doing good just to remember to check my work email, much less blog. We met our new kiddos Friday evening and I'm really excited about my little class. They seem so sweet and so excited about school. Love, love, love. Morgan Kate is loving being back at Roddey's. She talks about Roddey and her friends all of the time. I love seeing her so happy and excited. Today she decided to show Roddey her "adventurous, mischievous" side. During her nap, instead of sleeping, she and another friend climbed out of their pack-n-plays and onto the bed and began jumping. Roddey caught them in the act. I'm sure it was quite the sight. Conversations around our house tonight have been mostly about behaving, following rules, being safe, being sweet, etc. My birthday is today. Woo, hoo. I've received so many sweet calls, text and messages. My awesome 5th grade team got me a cake and a sweet gift card to Target. Next Wednesday is Morgan Kate's third birthday. It goes without saying that I've been experiencing quite the range of emotions lately. August does that for me. Nine o'clock is becoming my new bedtime. And in order to make that happen tonight I should sign off and head to bed NOW.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Dear Morgan Kate,
We survived our first day back! I guess I should say I survived. I knew you would do fine. And you did. You love Roddey and all of your friends so much and you thoroughly enjoy your time with them. You've been asking about all of them for weeks now. You weren't overly fond of getting up so early, nor was I, but you did great and you looked so darn cute in your new blue crab dress. I did well for the most part. I didn't cry at all last night or even this morning as I was getting us ready. Your daddy commented several times about how well I was doing. I did shed a few tears as I drove off from Roddey's.  I wasn't sad about leaving you there and I wasn't sad about returning to work. I was just sad that I couldn't be with you all day long. You and your daddy are my absolute everythings.
You had a really good day at Roddey's. You've been talking non-stop about it all afternoon. It makes me so happy to hear you and see you so happy. I had a really good day as well. We had meetings this morning, but then also had time this afternoon to work in our rooms. I got to catch up with people I hadn't seen since early June and I also got to spend time with some of our new teachers. I'm really excited about this year and all it holds. Going back this year has been so much easier than last year. Thank goodness. You and your daddy sent me a special surprise this afternoon at work. I got a dozen strawberries dipped in chocolate and it made me smile - BIG. 
While our summer may be over and our days of sleeping in and lounging around are on hold until at least Christmas break, I am so thankful for Roddey and your friends and I'm also thankful for a job I love. All of those things make this working mommy happy. I can't wait to see how you grow and change this year. You continue to amaze me every single day!
I love you baby girl,

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Our summer in pictures, with a few words.

We started the summer by having a play date with good friends.

We traveled to New Bern to visit family and see family sights.

Mommy attempted to organize.

Travis and I went on a little anniversary trip to Hilton Head.

We had more play dates with good friends.

Mommy organized some more.

We celebrated July 4th and Kyle's birthday.

We attended the parade for the National Champions of college baseball! 

Mommy organized even more.

We had a play date with Mama and Aunt Jan.

MK stood on the potty to brush her teeth, but we never accomplished potty training. 

We went to Folly for the week.

MK wore pigtails for the very first time.

We went to our very first movie as a family.

Mommy got crafty.

We spent a long weekend at Kaka and Gator's.

We loved on this little man.

It's been a great summer! As sad as I am to see it end, I'm anxious to see what the fall has in store.

Oh, and today so far, no tears. Yay for me!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

You may remember that late last summer, just before school started back, I had really happy days and then really sad days. I thought going back to work this fall would be easier. And it has been in many ways. But, I still have my sad days. Today was one of those sad days. It's funny because it didn't start out to be one of those days. Morgan Kate and I started the day with a follow-up ENT appointment that went very well. Then a delicious lunch with Melissa and Caroline. It was shaping up to be a terrific day. And then it hit me. All of a sudden. Like a ton of bricks. At 2:00 this afternoon it occurred to me that I only had about a day and a half left of my summer. That's when I began to mope. And sulk. And when Travis came home I cried on his shoulder like a baby.

I know I sound ridiculous. I'll be the first to admit it. And it really doesn't make sense. I told Travis that I hate feeling like this. It makes me feel like a weirdo. I enjoy teaching. I really do. I love my school and I especially love my fifth grade team. I just hate endings. I hate saying goodbye to summer. I hate seeing my days of nothing but Morgan Kate end. August is overwhelming enough for me and then throw in my birthday, MK's birthday and the start of school and I tend to get a little emotional. I also get really overwhelmed thinking about balancing work, home, being a mommy, being a wife, being a good daughter, a good sister and a good friend. The list goes on and on. So, I cry, just like I did this afternoon. That and a little retail therapy usually make me feel like a brand new woman. Although my retail therapy this afternoon wasn't very therapeutic. Another thing that makes me smile and forget about all my worries? Watching these two...

Thank goodness for these two and their ability to make mommy smile again. Goodness, I love them!