Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Lincoln's Name

His name is Lincoln Cameron. He grew inside of me during the most turbulent time our family has ever faced. Choosing his name was easier than with our first son though one thing was similar: we picked the middle name first. God used Harrison to bring us peace after my first miscarriage, so we chose Pax for his middle name. For his first name we wanted something that sounded classic and strong. When Cameron was killed we were in shock for so long. But when Kris picked me up from the airport in Houston 3 days after it happened we had a moment in the car where he looked at me and said, "you know, I want to talk to you about what I'd like to do if this baby is a boy." My response? "I wanted to talk about that today, too. Part of his name should be Cameron." I'm pretty sure God reached right down in that moment and lifted us up from the fog by laying the same thing on our hearts. We both knew that our baby was a promise. Our Lord makes beauty from ashes and life from death. He brought us beauty and life to cling to in the middle of ashes and death. One theme from this time in our lives is that Jesus gives us hope in the storm. He is steady. So to go with the name Cameron which, for us represents life and adventure, we were drawn to a name that felt steadfast and sturdy. Lincoln. It fit and, once again, God gave us peace. His two names are so different but they fit him. He's calm and predictable but his eyes have this quality of life that reflect that same promise from the Lord. 

Is he a replacement for what has been lost? Never. We don't want to set him up for a life of living up to someone else's legacy. He is his own person and God has a plan especially for him! But do we think that he is a balm on our hearts where there will always be something missing? Absolutely. 

His name is Lincoln Cameron Redus and we pray that he grows to know the steady presence of Jesus Christ in a life filled with adventure. 

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Another Post About Passing Time

I feel God working in the tumultuous time that is my life right now. I feel Him moving and shaping and pushing and pulling. He's doing things and manipulating time and space. I have this mental image of Him standing over my family, pushing invisible things around with immense grace and poise. It's calming to know that He is with me, covering me, sheltering me from the wind and rain.

I want so badly to look up and see the sun but right now it feels good to just sit and be. To wait.

You see, the last several months have been a series of highs and lows. In July I had another miscarriage at 9 weeks; my third pregnancy. Then in October we discover that we're expecting again. We waited, we prayed. In November things are still looking good and we're thrilled! We announce our news to our family at Thanksgiving. Then December begins with tremendous pain in K's brother being shot and killed. What a strange juxtaposition of life and death. This fresh, new life budding inside me while the outside world is tainted and stained with tragedy.

Can hope coexist with loss? Yes, with much prayer.

So do you see why it feels good to sit? Why it's refreshing to feel a little rain even when you're longing for sunshine? If my third pregnancy had progressed I would be due this week. I'm going to get really frank here. God knows what He's doing. I expressed to K recently that I feel sad for Baby Redus growing during such a trying time in our lives. Crazy, isn't it? But God had other plans and here I am now, nearing the third trimester of this fourth journey.

Here is where my heart is settling on the matter. My life is in the hands of my creator. When my third pregnancy began to follow much the same journey as my first we were so exhausted. Again, Lord? Really? I thought we were past this. I thought we learned that lesson. I thought I wouldn't have to walk that road again. But he carried us through, bound us up and healed our wounds. In a way, it was easier this time around because we knew what to expect. In other ways it was worse because it opened up new fears. We journeyed through it very quietly which I prefer. Now, as we walk a longer and harder grief journey, He's doing it again. More slowly this time, though, because that's what we need. We need Him to heal us with painstaking purpose. With so much weight and pressure yet so much delicacy and lightness. He's taking our hearts and shaping them and good gosh it hurts. It's uncomfortable healing, like contractions. The kind of pain that brings something good after a long wait, I hope.

So here I sit. Grieving yet hoping. Tearful yet laughing. Dying and living. Stuck but somehow moving. Closing my eyes, feeling the raindrops and the presence of God moving all around me. For the time being I'll stay here and wait. 

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Happy Early Birthday to ME!!

 It's no secret that we love babywearing around here. K and I both love our baby wraps, slings, and Ergo...LDB loves them, too! I have a hard time getting him to smile for pictures because he's so distracted by the camera, but today I learned a new trick. He's so happy being worn that it's not difficult at all to get a smile out of him in the wrap!

So anyways. I started looking around for someone to sell me the wrap that I've had my eye on for a while now. It didn't take me nearly as long as I expected so my birthday gift is here two weeks early. Thanks to K for the awesome gift!

 Here it is!

 This is the Girasol Northern Lights Diamond Weave wrap.
If you're not a babywearing nerd that means nothing to you. That's ok.

 See? LDB approves!

 He just kept laughing and smiling!

 We were both leaning and laughing here.

 This shows off the colors a bit more.

I'm way behind on blogging so consider this your catch-up photobombing!

Friday, November 2, 2012

4 Months

(This post was written at 4 months. The photos were taken at 4 months. But the photos and writing just now made it together!)

Month 4 has been exciting and exhausting...and we've loved it!

 Hey there, internets!

 I'm a goofy boy!

 And I smile really big when I slide down in the chair. Who needs to sit up, anyway??

We had our 4 month visit to Dr. F yesterday (K's birthday!!) and here are the 4 month stats. This month we moved up to the medium snap setting on his diapers but we're still using size 2 disposables. He had to wear them once after a beach trip diaper rash. The rash cream isn't great for cloth so we switched for a few days. He was in 3-6 month clothes for the first half of the month but, once again, I really should have moved him up sooner. I squeezed him in as long as I could. He's now in 6-9 and 6-12 exclusively for the height just as much as the general size.

His growth: 19 pounds 14 ounces, 27 inches long, 17 5/8" head. Once again, LDB is not on the growth chart at all but Dr. F said, "Don't worry, Mom, he's just setting his own curve over here!" Just like at our 2 month visit he emphasized to me that his size is nothing to worry about because his length and weight are in good proportion. Dr. F checked him over really well and let us ask all of our questions. He commented that his core strength and general body control are both very impressive for a baby his age so that was really encouraging. He's been congested since Saturday/Sunday but it's just in his nose, so it's nothing to worry about. LDB has finally started rolling from back to front after two months of being able to roll the other way, and he exhibited this to the Dr. several times while trying to roll off the exam table. Goofy baby.

This month he has been super, super observant. Starting at 3 months (see the pictures in that post for evidence) he really discovered his hands and stopped smiling nearly as much. He was always looking too focused on his surroundings and working hard with his hand-eye coordination to notice much else. Just now, as he's hit 4 months, has he started being more consistently smiley and giggly. I did, however, take full advantage of his quiet, observant times by wearing him a lot. That way he's able to see everything I'm doing; it makes for a great learning environment. Tummytime is still one of his favorite things so he's very pleased with himself being able to finally roll over by himself. The changing table is no longer a safe place! Diaper changes seem like the perfect time to test the new skill, right?

The beautiful schedule of last month is a mere memory now, unfortunately, but we're rolling with it! About half-way through this month he started waking up some at night and then slowly woke up more and more often as the days passed. At this point he's up 3-4 times at night and not taking great naps during the day. Unlike before when he would wake at night, there is no soothing him back to sleep in his crib after he would wake up gassy or just fussy. Now he wakes up crying, rolls to his back and will only fall back to sleep after nursing. The first couple of times he wakes up I feed him for anywhere from 5-30 minutes and then he happily goes back to sleep in his crib. 

Firsts: Rolling back to belly, playing in a toy seat, flying on a plane, playing the piano and "singing", seeing my hometown, trip to his PaGran and Aunt Su's house, "swimming" in the Gulf and standing strong while holding our hands.

I'll blog later about his big trip north and other fun things that happened this month later. Some things deserve more details! Also, I left my camera at my parents' house and I'll need photos before I post...whooops!

Friday, September 14, 2012

Grandparent Love pt. 2

Two weeks after we took a trip to K's hometown my parents drove down for a weekend visit. They arrived on a Wednesday afternoon and left Saturday morning. Lots of snuggles and fun were involved, of course!

 We went to the beach one evening, of course. It was windy!

 We picked up lots of cool shells! Unfortunately, the little guy pictured above was not among the living, but he was still photo worthy.

 Dontcha just love them?
I sure do!

 And what's even better, is that after almost 34 years they still love "them", too!

 As usual, LDB enjoyed being worn.

 I had a hard time with the focus at the end of the day, but here's the two main men in my life!

We loved having a chance to have both of my parents here with us for a bit. Dad and Kris got some things done around our house like switching out fans and locks. They also didn't complain about the two veg meals I made, even though they were probably hungry for something else! That's love!

LDB woke up from his morning nap just in time for a few goodbye hugs and sugars.

We were sad to see them go, but we're looking forward to them being back at the end of October!!

3 Months

Our 3 month update is one week late because our appointment with the Pediatrician was one week late. That's what happens when you procrastinate, folks!

My Little Drummer Boy was not at all interested in smiling for these photos. 
He's had plenty of happy moments lately but he is becoming very captivated by his surroundings and disinterested in my picture taking.

Here's our side by side comparison of this month and last month.

This month LDB weighs 18 pounds 6 ounces. His growth has slowed just a bit which is nice and healthy for this age. He rolled over for the first time a day before he was 2 months old and didn't do it again until a day before 3 months. Maybe he was trying to prove he still could? Both times have been very deliberate but, obviously, he's not making a habit of it just yet. He's still been in cloth diapers on the smallest snap setting and we're still loving Flips, Gro-Via, and homemade the best. We've used just a couple disposables and those were size 2s. His clothes have been about 75% 3-6 month and 25% 6-9 month. The length definitely started getting pretty snug on the 3-6 but not too bad. He's always enjoyed tummy time but now it's one of his very favorite things. His head support is awesome so he likes to push up with his hands and look around.

His sleeping and eating have both improved. Last month he slept 6-8 hours at night consistently but this month he started a pretty regular schedule of 10-11 hours at night. Believe me, it's incredible! We start bathtime between 8:30 and 8:45 then he's usually asleep by 9:30-9:45. Most mornings he sleeps until 7:30 but 8:30 isn't abnormal and once or twice he slept until 9:00. His naps during the day have become more like catnaps but we don't mind because he sleeps so well at night. He still nurses quite a lot but the frequency and duration are much better. He goes about 2 hours between feedings, occasionally 3.

His two new fascinations are his hands and practicing arching his back until he's laying down. In almost all of our 3 month pictures he's either chewing on/looking at his hands or arching his back and slumping down on the chair. Such a goofy baby!
 Here's the photographic evidence. It's so funny to watch him arch up and scoot down! He throws his arm out and a second later he's on his back and kicking his feet.

He's become even more chatty and giggly. He loves it when K comes home for lunch and he suddenly hears his voice. He also enjoys watching his big brothers and rarely gets startled when they get rowdy. In our few weeks here in our new city we had a few traumatic experiences with him while out and about so we really started limiting our outings. Now that he goes longer between feedings and I've become more competent at nursing in public when I need to we've gotten out a lot more. He's actually really, really good when we go out now! We get asked a lot, "Is he always this sweet and quiet??" The answer is NO but he really is a very good baby. One of my favorite things is how sweet and observant he is right now. He loves to smile and stare at so many things that he's just never noticed before. He's also done very well with being passed around at church, so I'm thankful for that.

Month 4 is going to involve more growth and development, of course, but also his first plane ride and other fun things! We can't wait!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Grandparent Love

After the visit from M and Co. we got to spend some quality time with our parents.
First we took a trip north to see K's family. There was a celebration in honor of his dad's 30th year of working for this company and we went to be the bearers of the grandbaby. GiGi and Pappy were glad to have a chance to show him off. Once again, I was a delinquent photographer but I did snap a few pictures.

 On the way. We stopped so we could all eat. My intention was to try and get a picture of LDB and his 4 uncles on K's side but this outfit got leaked on before we made it there. Ahhhh the adventures of traveling with a baby!

 Once we made it there Uncles Skeeter and Cricket were excited to see how much he had grown.

 Playtime with Pappy

Playtime with Daddy and GiGi introducing LDB to the family cat, Milo.


Getting to meet a couple of K's closest friends from home!

We had a great visit! LDB is growing so fast and I'm glad that K's parents were able to spend some time with him!