Monday, May 28, 2012

Remembering Grandma

This month marks two years since Grandma Hottell passed away. The month of May now has a new meaning for me. I remember the call I received, saying Grandma had passed away, the slew of trying to get ready with two small children (2 & 8 months at the time) to fly to the funeral, the realization settling in that my children would never get to meet their great-grandmother. This was something I’d hoped for them, longed for them to meet the woman that shaped Papa and his ten siblings into the people they are today.

She was the most gentle person I’ve ever met. You’d think eleven kids would have made her crazy but it seemed to have done the opposite to her. She was serene in all the chaos of 48 grandchildren and over 80 great-grandchildren.
I loved what was shared at her funeral about always being surrounded by little children, them always holding onto her dress or one in her lap. I love thinking of her as a young woman, facing life, upholding her standards with all those little mouths to feed. And never complaining once. That’s what stands out to me the most. I never once in my life heard her complain or say something negative about someone. I know she wasn’t perfect but in mind, as a little child, I loved being around someone who cared so much for God’s people. In the end when she couldn’t remember much (she would always think I was my sister when I talked to her on the phone), she’d tell me about how she met Truth. That’s what resonated most her mind: the thing she loved most, the thing she believed with all her heart.

It was always said that she’d have loved most for her children and grandchildren to be doing what was right more than anything. It’s a huge responsibility to try to live up to, to try to uphold the morals and standards she believed so much in.

I try to help my children know Great Grandma through my memories. They never got to meet her but Elias remembers her funeral and the older two know the stories I tell of the good ole days at Great Grandma’s house.

At the funeral, Elias asked if he could touch her. I told him that she’d be cold since she was no longer in her body and this was just her body lying before us. He said he knew and he wanted to touch her. So, I let him. He said “Mom, she’s cold! Great Grandma needs a blanket!” In his little mind, he only knew of Earth and of how she would be cold if she’d have still been in her body. I told him of Heaven and of how there’s no pain, no heat, no cold there. Hard for his little mind and hard for my little mind to comprehend.

So, as I remember my grandmother this month, I’ll tell my kids stories about the amazing woman she was. Stories about how her door was always open for her children, her grandchildren and the workers. The one who cooked us pancakes and biscuits every time we visited, even her old age. She had no recipe but I’d love to be able to recreate those sweet, fluffy biscuits, to be a little girl in her kitchen once again, to hear her tell people how I just never grew up, how she always thought I’d be tall like my sisters, but I just never grew up. To her, I was “Little Cassie” and when my son questions me about why God made me shorter than Daddy, I’ll tell him about this story, like I did this week, and remind him of the woman that made me proud to be little.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

On turning ONE...

Baby Eidel Jaine turned a year last week. How in the world could that have happened? My tiny baby went from this...
to this...
This year has been an insane one, medically for our little girl. She grew beautifully up until 4 months old. After that, she started losing weight and after numerous tests, they found fat in her stool. Which means that her body wasn't absorbing her food correctly. Five months of testing laster, (and a doctor change) after having a fever of 105 one night, we found out that she had a kidney infection, which had already gone into her blood. Super scary. They put her on crazy dangerous antibiotics and soon she was the happiest baby ever. In the 3 months since they've discovered her issue, she's progessed amazingly. She went from 13 lbs at 9 months to 19 lbs at 12 months! She went from not even rolling over at 9 months to rolling over, sitting up from laying down and crawling. She's now pulling up everywhere and trying to walk around things. We've been told that she's the smiliest baby people have ever seen. She’s got to be just so happy she’s not in pain anymore! I'm not sure where a full year has gone, or how my baby could be one, but I know she'll make the next year just as enjoyable! I can say, that this year, I've found my stride, my joy in being a mother. That's not to say that there aren't the I-want-to-pull-out-my-hair moments or the I-have-no-idea-what-I'm-doing ones but I've found the joy in the chaos. Which is great, since there's loads of that! Baby Eidel Jaine, this has been an amazing year with you and I hope for many more of your sweet smiles and snuggles!

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Another New Beginning

Okay, so let's try this blog thing out again. First up in trying to blog again: make my blog pretty. The same old, same old layout and blog header (that was really too big to look good and didn't include Eidel, who is already a YEAR old!) was getting, well, old. I'm ready to start new and try this over. I know I've said that before, but life gets busy. Diapers need changing, kids need feeding, and a house constantly needs cleaned. Throw in two special diets and add that to a part-time job of 20-30 hours per week and you've got essentially no time for blogging. So, I'm going to schedule it in. Just like I schedule in vacuuming, or that doesn't get done; blogging will also be scheduled. We'll see how much time we have for it and go from there. I'm sad that although I documented every detail of Elias' babyhood, Riah and Eidel's are all a memory. I want to change that and document the cute things that all three of them do daily. Here goes nothing!

Friday, June 3, 2011

Eidel Jaine

Our sweet Eidel Jaine arrived Monday, May 16 at 4:17 pm. She was a week and a half early and weighed in at 7 lbs 3 oz and was 19 inches long. All four of us are completely smitten with this sweet little girl that has somehow interrupted our nights' sleeps but we don't mind too much! What she lacks in the sleeping department, she makes up for in cuddles and sweetness!

Our first Sunday as a family of five...

Riah loves her baby!

Lias meeting Eidel Jaine for the first time.

Older kids playing meeting at Nana's while waiting for Baby to come.

Lias contemplating why this baby happened to be a girl. He told Nana "I thought this baby was going to be a boy (we didn't find out the gender ahead of time) but no such luck!" But, he's loving his new sister and is SUCH a good big brother!

Lias and his new truck that he got while waiting for Baby to come.

Our girls before Eidel's second Wednesday night meeting

Daddy and precious!

Papa and Grandma also came to the hospital to visit and help me come from the hospital but I didn't get any pictures (most of these pictures are stolen from Nana). Mom, send me the pics you took and I'll upload them!

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Friday, January 21

Thursday, January 20 - A Trip to Georgia

Tuesday, January 18 - Our Old Dog

Our 15 year old, beloved "Old Grandpa Dakota" He's an amazing dog who can sneeze on command and is great with the kids. We'll be so sad to have to say goodbye to him soon.

Monday, January 3, 2011

A New Year, A New Start!

When I started this blog, I promised myself it would be a way to document my kids' lives. The plan was to update frequently and have a record of all the fun things we did with the kids. This worked well when I just had Lias. I updated once a week and the plan worked well. However, when Riah June came along, the posts became more infrequent and the task of catching up just seems overwhelming. So, for the New Year, I'm going to start another attempt to document the kids' lives. Only this time, I won't document every little thing. I'll try to post once a week and post what I can. We'll see how well that goes.

2011 promises to be another exciting year for our family, as we welcome Baby #3. We look forward to meeting our sweet, kicking little baby. Many have asked but we will not be finding out the sex of this baby. The great thing about this is for once, I'm completely impartial as to which we have! I'd love a little boy for Lias and I'd also love a little girl for Riah. Either way, our family will welcome another tiny person to join our crazy household.

So, to start off: a quick update on each of the kids: Elias is 3 1/2 now. He talks a mile a minute and comes up with fascinating stories. He takes apart EVERYthing and loves his trains, cars and monster trucks. He's becoming such a little man. I see his Daddy in him more and more each day.

Riah June is 16 months. She's learning all sorts of new words and signs. She can fully communicate with us what she wants now, which helps with the crying. But, she'll always be a bit more dramatic than Lias so we do have quite a bit of crying still. She's a snuggler and so sweet. She got her first black eye last night and it's a real bruiser. I can't wait to see the little girl she's becoming!

Baby #3 is doing well. I'm 19 weeks and s/he kicks up a storm. I've only gained 4-5 pounds which concerns me but the doctor says it should be fine. We'll find out in five weeks at our ultrasound.

We're looking forward to a great year and lots of needed family time!

Hope all of your families are doing great! We'd love to hear from you!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010