Extravaganza Complete

You may have wondered what exactly we do with ALL the cookies we make during our Cookie Extravaganza. Well the Wednesday before Thanksgiving we all have Thanksgiving at the Hessel's - Mom hands us all bags and boxes and we pack up as many as we think our house can handle. In order to do this properly it also best to sample as you pack! :) YUMMY!

Family Movie Night

For two little boys "Home Alone" was a little slow in the beginning and a little slow at the end, but the middle had them ROLLING...literally! I was laughing just listening to the three men in my life laughing...oh, and cause that movie is freaking hilarious, but mostly because of them laughing.

The Story of Thanksgiving Week


We've been celebrating since Tuesday and basically everywhere we have went the story has been huge/lots of tables, lots of food and lots of kids. It's been fantastic! Hope your week has been equally as pleasant.

Will My Camera Know?

This is going to be George's sixth Christmas. That means for the last six years I've been taking this shot...
obviously with more kids added each year (Benny, Andrew, Jake, George, Danny, Stephen, Tucker)...this is a tradition that takes a lot of work! The question is will my camera even know how to pick up the color pink in a photo? This Christmas this photo is about to get even more interesting...and then next year there will be Jenna too!

All I Want for Christmas...

All I want for Christmas is my waist back! And of course a fat, happy, healthy baby girl! Looking through some old photos - why you may ask? Well it seems I enjoy depressing myself just so I can hear my husband tell me how hot I am pregnant ;)

Do you even recognize me????? I know you haven't seen me with a waist in a bazillion months!

So in case you couldn't find me this is Angela (my sister-in-law), Me, Katie (my sister), Chris (my mother), and Emily (my friend - oh, and Vince's girlfriend).

My Unnecessary Worry

About a week ago I started worrying about how George was going to cope with this whole not Mommy's baby anymore thing. I've been wondering, but the actual stress and worry came last week when he came home from school and would talk to Mike and Andrew, but me, his mother, no, notta, nothing. When he did speak he just acted ticked off and crabby. I sent him to his room for being disrespectful, but for some reason felt guilty about that (damn pregnancy hormones). Anyway a few minutes of talking in his room and he comes up with - you love the baby more than you love me. WTH! She's not even here yet...should I already have to deal with this. Well obviously I did my best to dispel this horrible rumor he had in his head and left his room and went and cried. Since then I've continued to worry (however, that is not what is keeping me up in the middle of the night blogging...in case you were wondering). Last night all of my worries left as I sat in the rocker in Carli's room talking on the phone. While I was rocking George was taking stuffed animals out of Carli's basket and putting them in the swing and vibratey seat thing (I don't know what you call that thing.). He'd strap them in, turn it on, even sing to them (oh, how he'll hate me for telling people this some day)...he even brought the stuffed animals blankies to cuddle with. It was the sweetest thing I've seen to date...and then I wrecked by asking if he was practicing for his baby sister - he said no, flipped Mr. Bear out of the swing and stomped out of the room. UGH!

Some Dang Cute Kids - 3

Oops! I might have gotten some posts confused, but hey, I did this at 3 a.m. :)

Thankful For...

My friend Jamie is doing this amazing thing over at her blog...every day she is listing some items that she is thankful for and on Friday she got my wheels turning when she mentioned her husband, "Her wonderful Adam [husband]." Do you know how many blogs are one my blog roll...a lot - just look to the left and you'll see. Do you know how many spend time complaining about their husbands - many! Do you know how many blogs I've quit reading because I get sick of listening to them going on and on about their husbands and kids. One of my favorite blogs, www.thepioneerwoman.com, is still madly in love with her husband of over 10 years. Do you know how badly I hope that I'm still madly in love with Mike in 10 years, or two years? Right now I'm still shocked on a daily basis when he leaves and I realize how much I really miss him. Beyond that I enjoy spending time with him more than anyone else...how many married couples can say that? I hope all of you! So here's what I'm getting at (yes, I have a point somewhere) - I hope you are thankful for your husband and I'd love to hear some comments about why.

Here's my current favorite reason for being thankful for my husband:

He came home from deer camp after his first day there because I was having contractions only to have nothing come of it. Now that is what would be expected of any husband, but do you know mine has yet to complain about that a single time! Not one dig. Not one I wish. Not one utterance of anything other then he was glad he made it home "in time".

I'm a lucky girl!

The Secret to Relaxing

People are sometimes in awe of the fact that our lives involve seven little boys on a fairly regular basis. When I talk to people about my weekend I can see that look in their eyes that says why was four soccer games, and a sleep over for five or six, and a birthday party relaxing. I think what they really don't get is that our boys all generally get along - and quite frankly if there is any disciplining/yelling it's generally at them as a group and not separately because they do play well together. And on top of that we live in the "village" approach so whichever adult is closest handles the chore at hand.

Now obviously we have growing pains due to age differences - Benny (7), Andrew (7), Jake (6), George (5), Danny (4), Stephen (2) and Tucker (1) - but hey, that's going to happen. So in our weekend extravaganza us four girls commented several times on how well the boys were doing playing in Tiff's great room and keeping the littler boys entertained while we baked, and baked, and baked. So here's the secret to how I find this relaxing - I hate relaxing. I'm bad at it. I'm good at continuously doing something/anything to fill my time....a trait that I have unfortunately passed on to my son, which makes his daily question "what are we going to do?" when I pick him up from school somewhat exhausting right now. So there it is. I know I've not solved all your child related, mommy needs me time issues - I like chaos. I thrive on it and the fact that we are now adding two more to the number - yes, that makes it nine - is thrilling, exciting and time consuming as we will now have to figure out how to add barbies and dance classes to our schedule. I love my life!

Everybody Has a Little Buddy

Our boys can be so good about keeping the littler
boys happy and content. Here's some pictures from cookie making that just make me smile as our kids learn some give and take.


George let Stephen "color" on his picture becuase Stephen REALLY wanted to help.







Stephen and Jake pretended to take a nap and ended up talking and hanging out under the blanket.













Jake gave Tucker a ride in the dump truck...and actually later Danny gave George a ride in the same dump truck, which was quite amusing.









And Stephen "helped" Tucker down the landing step.









The Extravaganza

So our cookie making extravaganza was a success as you can see.





844 cookies.

2 batches of divinity.

2 batches of rice crispy treats.

2 batches of peanut butter fudge.
And then came labor.... :)

Salt in the Wound

So did I mention that as Mike and I were leaving the hospital on Sunday night we got news that his cousin Jessie, who was due the same day as me, had her baby the night before. I am SOOOOOOOOOO happy for her and yes, I'll admit, SOOOOOOOOOOO jealous. :) I just saw pictures though and that's another BEAUTIFUL baby girl. Good vibes for Carli between Maddie and Zooey, oh, and Etta who I haven't got to see yet. So three girls down and Bailey gets to come tomorrow. That just leaves me, Michelle, Kelly, and Tiff. Well at least I know Carli will come out before Brenna or Jenna. Lot's of girls names in this post that may be confusing - let me clarify:

1. October 26 - Etta Faye (to Jennifer and Tim - Mike's cousins)
2. November 6 - Maddie (to Brian and Jenny)
3. November 15 - Zooey (to Jessie and Ben - Mike's cousins)
4. November 19 or 20 - Bailey (to Angie and Dane - I work with Angie)

then we wait....
Brenna belongs to Nate and Kelly, but isn't due til the end of December and Jenna belongs to Tiff and Gary and isn't due till February. At last word from Mike Jeremy and Michelle hadn't chosen a name yet, but their daughter is due the day before ours.

Doctor's appointment at 11:15 a.m. and I'll keep you posted!

Cropping

Thursday I spent the day trying to catch up my scrapbooking. I feel the need to get up to date when Carli comes for obvious reasons. In the process I came across some pictures that I truly love and since I'm still pregnant I have nothing better to talk about so I thought I'd share. Here you go....enjoy!


Tucker and Mommy (aka Bridget)


Stephen
Danny
Andrew

Benny

Latent Phase Lasts FOREVER

So it seems that we are going to have a replay of George. Yesterday my contractions got stronger (or I got more tired, not sure which) and were only a minute apart...back we went to the hospital. Still just 1 cm...so another hour of walking and still just 1 cm. So we are back home. Waiting. Waiting for hell to freeze over cause that's when babies of mine like to finally come out. UGH! The good news is I'm finally wanting to nest in between exhaustion so my house is getting really clean! :)

Latent Phase

So labor has arrived. Apparently I've been in the latent phase of labor since about 5:15 last night. Nothing like a day of making Christmas cookies and your husband being 2.5 hours away to send your cervix over the edge...although, technically it isn't over the edge yet, just 70% there. So while Mike headed home Bridget took me to St. Luke's with contractions every 5 or so minutes. They even got to monitor some that lasted upwards of 2 minutes (woohoo!). I was a centimeter dilated on arrival so we did the norm and walked the hall's for an hour....to no avail. No change. So I was sent home with the famous line - "you'll be more comfortable at home". Oddly enough, I am. So today it appears that Mike and I will be laboring at home until I can't walk through the contractions and then we'll be headed back in. According to the labor nurse it could be 5 hours or it could be 20. We're at hour 14 right now and not much has changed...contractions every five minutes and I can still walk and talk through them. :(

Bring on the pain cause I'm ready and really don't want him to have missed a day of deer hunting for nothing!

Falling Harder

Unless you know me this won't mean a whole lot to you, but for those that do let me tell you how nice it is that my husband and my brother (and my whole family for that matter) get along. They genuinely like each other...they hang out without me (in fact sometimes I think they both prefer it that way :). I love them both and let me tell you...I fell even harder for Mike when I saw how well he got along with Vince.

Ribs


See this darling baby girl with the fat cheeks! She has her darling little feet stuck in my ribs :(


So shall we start taking bets on her size?

Lonely Weekend

Today I embark on the start of my very lonely weekend. Instead of sharing the bed with my bestest, bestest friend (my super sexy husband) I have to share it with my bestest, bestest girlfriend, Bridget. We've been there before and it will be nice to have a break from the snoring in my ear, but still somewhat lonely.

Mike, Ben, Gary and Pop are all leaving today for deer camp. So that leaves Me, Bridget, Tiff and Mom ALONE...I mean alone except for the seven adorable boys that will be keeping us company all weekend. So rather then single parent separately we are combining the village. It's so much easier that way! Tonight, Drew, George and I head to Ma Ma Hessel's to camp out with everybody. Then tomorrow we'll all head to Tiff's for our annual Christmas Cookie Making EXTRAVAGANZA! After we completely exhaust ourselves cooking all day we'll pack up and head to my house for another sleep over. So wish me luck as I struggle through my weekend without Mike :( I just don't know what I'll do with my time.

Oh, and good luck guys! But mainly my guy cause there is no way I'm letting him leave me lonely next weekend too! And I'm apparently forbidden to have a baby until the 30 point buck has been field dressed and quite frankly folks - I'm sick of being pregnant!

Fabulous Friday!

So last Friday Peine Ridge Elementary popped up on my caller id. You can imagine my surprise, shock and delight to find the principal calling me to say that MY son had been chosen as the Fabulous Friday student!!!! That's right! I'm so proud!

Adorableness


My adorable nephew!!!
Love this picture and love this kid!! :)

Stretching


Geez, Rachel, how much more can this skin stretch?!?!?

Baby Girl

Here are the much anticipated pictures of Miss Maddie.

She is SOOOOOOO beautiful!!!!!

Some Dang Cute Kids


George



Andrew

Mark - my youngest brother

Soccer Season


Soccer season is over, which always makes me sad. It's so fun to watch the boys play. Now we wait till spring.


The Mailman Came

Look what came in the mail today...George's tadpole! Yep, in the mail...in an envelope!

It was a long process. George got a frog habitat for his birthday in May. They had to wait to ship the tadpole until it wasn't too hot or too cold. Then we had to leave it in the tube to acclimate to the temperature of the water.
It was a LOOOOOOOOOOONNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNGGGGGGGGGGGGG 30 minutes!












But finally we were able to release him into his new habitat. We are still waiting on George to name him, but he's pretty excited!!!