Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Grant Meets Tyler and Nathan

The brotherly bonding started well before Grant was born.  Lots of kisses and pats to mommy's tummy were given.  There were also several brotherly jabs and jumps to go along with it.  We didn't want Grant to get an unrealistic idea of our household.  ;)
Tyler was explaining to Nathan that Baby Grant was finally here!  Nathan was still a bit confused. :)

Excitement from Tyler!

"I am not too sure about this guy.  I was only the baby for 20 months..."

Proud papa and Great Aunt Patty watching our three boys meet each other for the first time. 

I love Tyler's innocent face holding his new baby brother. 
The week before Tyler told Grandma Francis that Nathan was his brother and that the new baby was going to be Nathan's brother.  Tyler has since come around to the idea that it is okay to have two brothers. :)

Proud big brother!

Nathan is often a mommy's boy and really stuck his lip out there while standing at the edge of my bed and having dad tell him he couldn't jump up and sit on mom's lap. 
Note:  A big thanks to Aunt Maggie for capturing all these photos!  She was determined to get Nathan's lip sticking out there. 

"Please mom..."
It is very tough to resist this face...I wanted to reach down, scoop him up and have him cuddle on my lap for a bit, incision or no incision.  Thankfully, Nathan was given some snacks to distract him. 

"Let me check out this new guy...he is kinda cute." ;) 
  Now, Nathan is in LOVE with "Baby Gant."   He often asks to "hold baby?"  Nathan is great at giving kisses too and if he hears Grant crying he gets a very concerned look on his face and comes to get me. 
All in all, the bigger boys have been absolutely WONDERFUL around Grant...and pretty gentle with mom too.  ;)
A HUGE thanks to my mom for watching the boys a TON while Jeff and I enjoyed some bonding time in the hospital with our newest addition.  She brought the boys up to meet their new brother shortly after he was born and kept the older boys overnight, took Tyler to his basketball practice/game the following morning, church on Sunday...I could go on!  Thanks, Mom!
We could not be more blessed to have such an amazing family! 

Grant's First Bath

Grant got his first bath just an hour or so after he was born and Jeff was right there to capture the whole thing with the camera.   I will just share a few of my favorite photos.  :)
Perfect baby boy! 

Pretty calm while getting his hair washed.  (Not so calm while being washed up with the washcloth). 

Grant, your mommy loves to have her hair washed before a haircut too so you come by it honestly.

We are absolutely in love with this sweet face!

Monday, November 25, 2013

Welcome to the world Grant Michael Francis!

This post is overdue and most would think because we have been crazy busy with three little ones.  It really has been a smooth transition to a family of 5 and we have spent a lot of time just enjoying our newest addition! 

Warning: We have a LOT of photos.  I will be breaking it up into several different posts.

Our third baby boy waited until his scheduled arrival to enter the world.  We were scheduled for a C-section on November 15 at noon and I am pretty sure the weeks leading up to that time I was counting the hours.   
As with my previous two pregnancies I retained a lot of fluid with Baby #3.  No cause for concern though as my blood pressure remained low or normal the entire pregnancy. 
At this point, we were waiting for the OR to cool off so we can have a baby.  We were scheduled to deliver at noon but the OR was 90 degrees...not ideal for anyone.  Jeff was bored so he decided to snap this lovely photo. 
 Proud papa waiting to meet his third son. 
Grant had the umbilical cord wrapped around his neck twice!  Yikes!  Thankfully, everything was fine and he hadn't managed to pull it tight.  This baby did NOT want to come out either.  There was a LOT of pushing and tugging.  Not by me but by the nurse and doctor literally pushing down on my stomach to get him to come out. 

Our first introduction to Grant Michael Francis!
I thought he immediately looked so much like Nathan. 

"Wow, it is bright out here!"

Grant was squirming all around right out of the womb. 
Dr. Potts helped us have another successful pregnancy and birth!  He is absolutely wonderful!  He did comment that even after 3 C-sections, my uterus looked just fine...just in case we wanted to try for #4.  Jeff laughed out loud and I thought "I am not even closed up yet and he is mentioning #4!"  Also, I am not sure what the etiquette is for responding to a compliment on your uterus...I think I just had a slight chuckle. 

Jeff got to cut the cord for Grant too.  We, again, donated the cord blood in hopes that it will help someone who needs it. 
I should mention the awesome photography we had in the OR thanks to my anesthesiologist and my mom's best friend, Terri Morgan.  We gave her a quick lesson on our camera operation while waiting for the OR to cool off (she was a bit intimidated by the big camera and flash).  She was amazing (in all capacities)! 

8 pounds, 8.6 ounces (rounded up to 9)! 
Our smallest baby yet!  Grant did get to come at the 39 week mark while Tyler and Nathan were born at 41 weeks.  Had Grant had the extra two weeks, I am sure he would have given his big brothers a run for their money.  Tyler was 9 lbs, 2 oz and Nathan was a whopping 9 lbs, 11 oz.  Grant seems so tiny to us. 

Jeff was right there with Grant the whole time making sure he got the proper identification. 

Big feet, just like the rest of the family! :) 

Jeff was sweet to keep checking on me too.

And couldn't wait to bring me our sweet baby.

Daddy and Grant

My first kisses. 

We are so happy to finally have him here.  He is perfect! 
More photos coming soon!

Tuesday, November 12, 2013


This incident happened several weeks ago but I thought it was worth documenting. 
Nathan and Tyler were playing outside in the backyard and the sidewalk that goes down to the lower patio has a bit of an incline.  Tyler enjoys riding his big wheel down said sidewalk.  Meanwhile, Nathan was pushing his Tonka truck up the sidewalk.  Well, a collision happened and Nathan's forehead came in contact with the concrete.  Dad was outside with the boys and came running in with blood all over Nathan's head.  Talk about our hearts skipping several beats...the head sure does bleed a LOT. 
Luckily, the top layer of skin has just come off and there was no major gash.
After we got everything cleaned up and the bleeding stopped, this was the end result.  Grandma and Popo Francis had excellent timing and happened to stop by with ice cream treats for the boys.  Ice cream cures lots of boo boos. 

This was our photo to Dad the following morning, already looking better!  Yes, he has crazy hair!

Tyler wanted me to send Dad a picture of his head too.  ;)
I will say that this sweet boy was in tears after the collision too.  He felt terrible!

Nathan was over it very quickly and didn't the collision slow him down a bit.  I am sure it was only one of many future collisions between brothers.  I am confident I will be wearing a referee shirt with a nurse hat for the next several years with 3 boys!  Whew!  :)

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Halloween 2013

My Halloween photos were limited to mostly inside pics since it was raining when we started our Trick or Treating adventure.  While at home we actually had friends and neighbors stop by our house with candy and treats for the boys, in case they weren't going to go out.  Jeff and I thought we had hit the jackpot!  Nevertheless, Tyler was pretty excited about going out trick or treating though so we bundled them up and grabbed the umbrellas. 
Curious George, the Mizzou Tiger and Peacock Hadley all met up at Grandma and Grandpa Zick's for a few photos.  Nathan and Hadley were thrilled, can't you tell? 

Tyler was laughing at Kyle and I snapping we were going to get one with all of them looking at the camera, much less smiling.  Ha!  I know, Tyler, it is pretty funny!

Hadley wasn't thrilled with her costume but when she saw Tyler and Nathan dressed up like dorks, it didn't seem so bad. :)

I will admit we reused this costume.  See Tyler's Halloween that he wore it back here.  We had a Jake (from Jake and the Neverland Pirates) costume but it was too thin and looked goofy with a bunch of clothes underneath it so out of the costume bin this one came.  Yes, I have a bin for just about everything!  I do love it when I get to reuse things.   

"Hey, what's so funny over there?"

Is she not adorable?

I love this one.  These two are too cute together. 

And this one...well he is just a ham!  I love my monkey to pieces!
He didn't have a real opinion on his costume and when I found this one, it was too fun not to get.  I wish I had a better photo of him standing up.  

Rain didn't stop the trick or treating.  Tyler was usually way ahead of Nathan.  Nathan and I went to a handful of houses and then went back to Grandma and Grandpa's to help hand out candy. 

Nathan liked just sitting on the front porch with Grandma and greeting all the kids.  When we were inside, he would get excited when the doorbell rang.  Then Nathan attempted to leave with each group of kids.  I was often chasing him down the front sidewalk. 

While Nathan was busy handing out candy, Tyler was on a mission.  He was VERY into Halloween this year and returned ready to eat CANDY!  Lucky for us, he cannot open most of the wrappers yet and I am pretty sure that is the only way we were able to limit his candy intake. 
We hope you had a Happy Halloween too!  It sure is fun with the kiddos! :)

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Pumpkin Carving

Two days before Halloween we decided it was time to carve our pumpkins.  (It was a travel day for the Cardinals and the World Series so we had some free time.)

We decided to do it in the garage since it was raining outside and to keep the mess still somewhat outside. 
Nathan took some convincing from Dad to check it out. 

A little help and he was all in. 

He was not so sure about the guts of the pumpkin but didn't want to miss out on anything either. 

Tyler rolled up his sleeve and stuck his hand in with some apprehension. 

You can tell Tyler was a bit put off by it but at least he participated.  In years past, he really wanted nothing to do with it and Jeff and I ended up doing most of the work. 

This was the one Tyler and I worked on...okay, so it was still mostly me, but he did help. 
I feel bad I didn't get a photo of Jeff and Nathan's pumpkin.  Jeff finished his up while I was giving the boys a bath and had already put it outside.  I was in no mood to go out into the rain to take a photo of it on the porch. 
This was probably Tyler's favorite pumpkin.  I found the Woody kit on Halloween clearance last year and put it with the other decorations.  Tyler was upset that we didn't have a Buzz to go with it.  Sorry, no Buzz on clearance last year.  :)
I will admit, it is my kind of pumpkin decorating too. 
No mess, we can reuse the Woody year after year - perfect!  I should probably see if I can find a Buzz for future years...

In other Halloween decorations, Nathan made these ghosts and spiders with Aunt Sandy on a Tuesday.  I am so impressed that she watches Tyler, Nathan and Hadley and has time to do crafts! 

Tyler made this spider web at preschool and was excited since he threaded the web.
Halloween blog coming up next.  Krista and Anna, I heard you are very disappointed in my lack of costume photo posting.  Sorry, they are coming, I promise!  :)