i have had so many messages asking about my mother.  it blesses my heart to know how adored she is.  i love knowing that people recognize her greatness. she is healing beautifully from surgery.  however, they did conclude by the size of her lumps that her cancer was a stage two.  it will be a few weeks before the lab results determine if it's a certain type of cancer that spreads fast.  if it is, she will undergo chemo.  i was under the understanding that since her lymph nodes were free and clear...she was good to go. well, i'm confident that she is still good to go, but keep praying that this isn't the type that they are checking for and that chemo isn't in my dear mother's future.  i just want her to get that pep back in her step.  she loves staying busy.  my mama's the wildest and cutest preacher's ...

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i really thought i was a professional by now.  i had the confidence of a great-great-great grandmother, with 38 grand kids total.  i was well aware of how difficult those first few months are and was determined that i would face them with the attitude of, it's only for a season and i can handle anything for a season.  and while yes, that is very true, i still felt completely inadequate, overwhelmed, and clueless. this whole week was spent spinning my wheels, backwards.  mary refused to be laid down.  the first day i chalked it up to an off day.  then it happened the next day.  and the next.  she wouldn't even let me lie her down if she was sleeping.  no sir re, baby would wake straight up and demand her mama.  what can i say, baby loves her some mama. and mama loves her some baby.  but there's this ...

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one minute i'm cleaning poop off my sofa, and the next i'm breaking up a sibling spat.  one minute i'm lost in seventh heaven, and the next i'm wiping tears of extreme thankfulness from my eyes.  our days are just...well, unpredictable. nathan knows good and well that lucy thinks she's a princess.  she bops around the house all day calling herself one.  so, in true big brother fashion, he pesters her and says, "lucy, you're a king." (while knowing good and well this will upset her).  and it does.  after she corrects him by shouting, "no, i'm a princess!!", he comes right back at her with, "no, you are a king." she then collapses to the tiled floor and just completely falls apart.  i take a deep breath, peel lucy off the floor, and reassure her that nathan isn't being very kind and that she most certainly is a princess.  i then ...

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father's day, perhaps, is a day that means more to me than mother's day.  a day that i emotionally reflect on the void that has been replaced and filled in my life.  a void that was present in my life before my husband became a father. all my life, i longed for a father/daughter relationship.  i remember going over to friends houses in high school and enviously observing how they interacted with their daddy's.  i remember this vividly.  i wanted it so desperately.  and unfortunately, i was never going to have such a relationship because of the most selfish disease i've ever witnessed.  alcoholism.  it's vicious.  and it infected my once-precious father and turned him into an abusive, self-absorbing alcoholic.  and just like that, he was gone.  yet still very much alive. in no way is this meant to be a woe-as-me, sad story.  in fact, please don't feel sad for me.  because ...

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i've said if before, and i'll say it again.  and again.  and again. the more i strive to find the good, the more that good finds me. it's just that simple.  how i roll. i realize this the most on days that i press through some trying times.  days that just aren't that great.  but still, i find the joys.  no matter how small they are, they are present.  and i will find those little suckers. on days that my super chill newborn decides that she'd rather be held all the time.  please and thank-you. on nights that my super-sleeping little newborn decides that she'd rather sleep with husband and i, or not sleep at all.  please and thank-you. and on days that i feel as though i am glued to my glider rocker, breast feeding the day away due to an inevitable growth spurt.  and this does NOT please a certain 2-year-old. that ...

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this week provided just the perfect amount of rain and gloom for me.  actually, it rained and stormed every single day up until the weekend.  which was completely fine by me since i wasn't up for many outings anyway.  i didn't feel like i was missing out on all the fun this way.  in fact, i have a fun little crew and being stuck indoors with them can actually be super awesome.................for the most part. and besides, i'm a major coffee-enthusiast.  like, i major-mega-friggin love that stuff.  my two favorite cups happen to be my very first cup in the morning, rain or shine.  and a nice, warm cup while the rain pours.  and this week it just so happens that i had my first cup of morning coffee, while it stormed, at least three separate mornings. and besides, i had a few nights that weren't all that smooth with my new little ...

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the week of recovery seemed more like vacation, in all honesty.  i mean yes, i was sore.  i couldn't laugh, cough, sneeze, sit up, lie down, and the list goes on without a serious amount of pain throbbing from my inside out.  but, i was given the chance to rest and recover thanks to all the help. my sweet mama drove down to meet the baby and stayed for four full days.  during that time i tried to get in on as many naps as possible even though it was major discipline.  i really wanted to sit around the kitchen table over hot coffee and chat the day long with my best friend.  but i resisted that urge. i knew that after she left i was going to be solo, plus three little people under the age of four.  i wanted to be as fresh-minded and rested as i possibly could ...

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Mary Elizabeth Marshall, 6lbs 3 oz, 19.5 inches. it was the night before her scheduled delivery, and i was beyond excited.  here i am tying up some last minute loose ends, when bam, i begin contracting.  they were mild at first, but rhythmic in timing.  then they tapered off.  i decided to take my kindle and finish reading with hopes that it would lull me to sleep.  i didn't think i'd get much sleep, if any, but i was darn sure going to try and reading sends me straight to tired town.  right when i began to doze off, around midnight, i was ever-so-painfully awaken by some powerhouse contractions.  i thought, oh dear, this feels like the real ones.  they were eight minutes apart, like clockwork.  i knew i was in early stages of labor. since i was going to have to have a cesarean no matter what, i decided to ...

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