Monday, September 24, 2012

Enjoying the River

One of the things that we enjoy most about living in Morgantown is that the Monongahela River runs right through the center of it.  The Mon river flows south from Pennsylvania, down past our house (you can't see it from here, it's sort of just over the hill) and into Morgantown.  If we drive just about a half mile north from our house, we cross over into Pennsylvania, another mile and we're in the little town of Point Marion, PA.  The above picture is taken in Point Marion, at a park we have been visiting lately. 
 Part 1 of the river enjoyment is the littler of the kids enjoying the water's edge this week.  I've been going to the park once or twice a week to walk around a track that is there.  The kids can play on the playground or ride their scooters on the basketball court while I walk.  Sometimes the biggest boys fish on a dock on the river while we're there.  This week was the first time that we discovered this shallow inlet and explored it. 
 It was Elijah who finally convinced me to let them take their shoes off and put their feet in the water.  Then there was no way we were leaving right away.  We stayed, enjoyed the water and came home for a late lunch when I finally had to cut it off.  The older boys, who were fishing, didn't mind the delay, of course.

 Isn't it beautiful out on the river?  It was the perfect weather that day.  I love the sun sparkling on the water.
 Part 2 of river enjoyment is, of course, fishing.  The boys have come to love this fishing spot at Point Marion Park and it's so close to our house that they have had a lot of opportunity to get good at catching things here and pulling up some different species than they have gotten out of surrounding lakes. 

 Sam's first Crappie.
 Using his new fish scale to weigh and measure his catch.
 And Part 3 of river enjoyment  is for Peter and I, who recently got to enjoy a lovely Italian dinner out on a patio alongside the river, in town.  The weather was the same perfect temperature and we were there all through the sunset and into the dark, where the little white lights hung around glowed and the hanging flower baskets were fragrant.  I soaked up the wonderful atmosphere and enjoyed the best company that I know.  :)  We were thankful to get this date night in before the arrival of our newest little one.  It will be a special memory.
 Just for fun, here's some pictures of some of the food we enjoyed.  Crab dip with deep-fried bread.  Super good.
I ordered a salmon and penne pasta dish with whole wheat penne.  It was wonderful.  Having some seafood was exactly what we were hoping for. 

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Portraits, From Home

 Prompted by a request for pictures for Grandma Betty, I recently attempted to take a good, portrait-style picture of each of the kids.  Here are the results, some better than others. 
 These of Sam and Will I took several weeks back.  I think I might redo them.  The ones I took below of Ben and Cal today were better.  I think I like the dress clothes better than the casual clothes.

 These, of Millie, were cute and fun to do, but I might keep trying for an even better portrait-style picture.

 Took this one today and I LOVE it.  This was such a difficult-to-catch smile.
Elijah is, for obvious reasons, the hardest to photograph sometimes.  I took him to the portrait studio at Sears today and had his picture taken professionally.  I decided I would like to have at least one professional portrait done of the kids as babies/toddlers.  After that I think I'll try to take an annual "portrait" from home around the time that we go back to school in the fall. 

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Pregnancy Update After Midwife Visit: 36+ Weeks

 Yes, I'm finally posting a picture of myself.  I didn't plan to.  I went and got my hair cut today and actually wore a skirt and a blouse, so I thought perhaps I'd get Peter to take a picture and I could post an update after seeing my midwife yesterday.  I'm always stunned at how enormous I look when I actually see myself in a picture. 
There.  I adjusted my shirt to contour my belly a little better.  That's not quite so bad.

The update:  Midwife says baby is an estimated 6 1/2 pounds right now.  Not too big.  She thinks I may go 4 to 5 weeks more before delivering.  Maybe the first week of October?  The baby's heartbeat has been consistently on the slower side, possibly indicating a male baby.  She says that heart rate is the closest thing to a genuine predictor of gender that there is.  Baby Jones #8 was 128 beats per minute yesterday.  A heart rate closer to 150 bpm would possibly indicate a girl baby.  Sometimes this indicator doesn't work, but it's supposed to be fairly consistent.

Beyond that, everything seems to be going well and looking good.  I am pushing myself and working hard at exercising every day (except Sunday).  Though I am feeling well overall, I can hardly picture going 4-5 weeks more with consistent growth of the baby too.  I suppose that's always how it is.  I can't help hoping that it will be more like 3-4 weeks.  Somehow that seems more do-able to me.  We've been so busy with thinking about the new school year that I confess I haven't done much to actually prepare for the baby's arrival.  The last few days have been HOT and HUMID.  It's like both my brain and my body have given up.  I think it might be easier to get some things prepared if it would get a little cooler.  I believe there's some cooler weather on it's way this week-end. 

I will likely post more information as we get closer to the birth.  In the meantime I need to pick a boy's name, get out the cradle, get a home birth kit from the health department and collect home birth supplies.....the list goes on.  Thanks for your support of our family and for any prayers that you say for us.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Sam Catches a Crappie

I took a short video when Sam caught his first Crappie recently.  William was busy reeling in a number of little pan fish while Sam kept trying for something big enough to take home and eat.  When we were ready to go and Sam hadn't caught anything, he hooked this fish at the last minute that made it worth it.  He got to take it home and fillet it.