To life with six kids, that is. It's been interesting, but good. Anna is starting to like the car seat more. I have only taken her out by myself three times, but she stopped crying and fell asleep within a few minutes' drive each time. She seems to like listening to this particular violin/piano instrumental CD. Maybe it's because her Dad plays the piano at home a lot, and she recognizes it.
She eats like a little piggy, and sleeps the rest of the time. There really is never a stretch for more than maybe 10 minutes that she is awake. BUT she usually wakes up if she is not being held, so she has been spending much time being carried in a sling, or in the arms of her Dad or older brothers. In the mornings, she has been staying asleep in our bed on her own after I nurse her. Today was the longest yet, almost 2 hours.
The other kids are doing well. The only one that has been acting up more than usual is Becky, which I expected, as she was already going through a rough phase. She is very excited about the baby and doesn't seem jealous. She simply figured out that while I am sitting down nursing Anna is a prime time to steal the chocolate out of her siblings' advent calendars, unravel a roll of toilet paper, squirt a new tube of toothpase all over the floor, and get into all kinds of other mischief.
Miriam is all over the baby. She is so cute and mothering. She got asked to be the flower girl at the wedding of a couple in our church. They are getting married in January, and she has asked me probably a hundred times every day how much longer it will be until the wedding (literally). She is SO excited. It's all she can think and talk about anymore. Note to self: next time, don't announce such monumental events to little kids until the day before.
The boys have been doing some school work here and there, mostly during the girls' nap time. They also spend hours every day reading or playing outside. Their Dad and Grandma bought them some "Hardy Boys" books, which they love. My husband has also been taking them to the office or out working with him a lot.
We will be celebrating Christmas with "just" the eight of us, as we have no relatives living in town. My husband's younger sister and her husband will be with us the day after Christmas, though, so that will be fun. We are opening the presents on Christmas Eve after our traditional dinner of hot dogs, and having the usual ham dinner on Christmas Day. It's so childish, but I get excited just like the kids every time the mailman drops off another package at our house. I still have three gifts to finish for the kids - hopefully, the baby will cooperate. There are also more packages to wrap, which is not easy with a baby in arms.
My husband's mom - she must have read the "Cat in the Hat" books several dozen times while she was here because the kids kept asking her to do so.
Grandma with all three girls
The matching dresses were Christmas gifts from her to the girls.
Our church is celebrating its 5th anniversary this Christmas Day. We have special things planned for the next day, Sunday, our anniversary service. Being married to a pastor, particularly the pastor of Faithful Word Baptist Church, is not always sweetness and light. There have been many struggles that nobody would ever know about or understand unless they have been in the same situation, and beside all else, it's just plain hard work - for both of us. Last Sunday, one of the key men in our church, who has been with us for over 4 years, preached during the evening service, and his words really encouraged me. At the end, he and the church presented my husband with an exceptionally well-made photo book that chronicles the last 5 years of our church's existence, as well as a very generous gift. It was so nice!
Hope everyone is enjoying this last week of Christmas!