Mapquest said our car time would be one hour and forty minutes. Eighty something degrees in our greenhouse Toyota Previa with no air conditioning, lots of flapping wind- but the comfort of each kid with a water bottle, a care bear, Pippi Longstocking book, Monk the monkey and a num-num for those who required one (special blanket's name in the Milliman household). And away we go...first stop, the B's to drop Carolina off at J's birthday party. Bring your Littlest Pet Shop collection-there will be trading for those interested. A jubilant hug when the girls meet and not a look back. Next to Oregon City to meet the G's for A's birthday celebration. Oh how grand to be four and to know all the joy and celebration is in your honor! Loot bags bursting at the seams with tootsie rolls, cinnamon bears, lollipops, motorcycles and memories. Moses got to operate the remote control car, Adrianna did a lifelike chalk drawing of A's mom and herself (friends forever). Rainbow got hit in head with the pole used for demolishing the race car pinata. Moses was the first to win a prize. Phineas made friends with A's grandparents. When the fun had to end to go pick up Carolina they said, "That was sooo much fun!" We picked up Carolina and true to form she was more interested in getting to the next adventure with Pippi than detailing her every party move for me. But at least she was happy. Pirate music cd played and then the kids favorite tune came on, "Puff the Magic Dragon!" Sunny sang in her prettiest voice, Moses- his most earnest, Adrianna- working her memory power to its fullest capacity and Rainbow...repeating the words after hearing them and sounding so cute. Just like a sweet, old lady, hard of hearing but full of heart. The full sun shined through the glass illuminating her sprouting hair with a touch of gold amidst the whiteness. A day of content, happy, buoyed hearts, mostly peace amongst the siblings singing in what was closer to pure harmony than the Motab crew. My beautiful children so unaware that their blossoming souls were pulling at their mother's heartstrings so decidedly. This is what gratitude is.
Perhaps a certain little Sunny Carolina could use a comment or two on her blog... http://squeakieswebsite.blogspot.com If you can find it in your heart it would greatly delight the little girl:) Thank you friends!
It's not every day you are born and acquire 4 instant best friends, but that's the way the day rolled for our little guy. In the afternoon Clinton brought Carolina, Moses, Adrianna and Rainbow in to meet Phineas. A short parade of kids I missed walked single file with smiles and best behaviors and sudden coos of "Ahhhh, oh, he's so cute. Hi Fin-E-US!" Rainbow didn't see him right off. He's little and easy to miss. I scooped her up and hugged her and Eli brought Phineas over for her to see. She tilted her head to the right, what she does to magnify cuteness in the baby or animal forms. Everyone gave him soft kisses. Carolina held him dear, she seemed so mature and nurturing holding him. Moses was content and loved him right off. Adrianna was proud and pleased with the new addition. The nurse gave them all stickers indicating big brother and big sister status. She knew they were here from the happy sounds she heard coming down the hallway. The ride home showed our family's completion: 7 passenger Toyota Previa mini filled to capacity. Rainbow and Phineas next to each other, Rainbow ooed and awwed the whole ride home at the little baby next to her. Since coming home Rainbow likes to take moments to hold Phin, give me lots of kisses and motion for other's to "Come'ere" so she can show us the baby anbd how cute he is. Adrianna is helpful gathering diaper supplies and admires his new outfits. She loves the cute ones and is a fan of a stylish brother. Sunny holds him just like a grown up and Moses never tires of taking a turn holding him. He just discovered sometimes he can calm Phineas if he sucks on the side of his hand. Everyone loves it when he settles in calmness and takes a minute to show us his rich, dark, blue eyes and looks at us, his adoring fans.
Phineas Coltrane Milliman entered this world sunny side up resulting in a scrapper's bruise to prove it. Sturdy and strong he is our burliest little guy weighing 8 lbs and 6 ounces. Eli noticed he has Christenson characteristics. Ryan's hands and feet, facial expressions we could see like like Ryan and Katelin. His hair seems darker but most people look at it and say, "THAT's dark?" Perhaps your perspective changes when the color spectrum in your household ranges from white to mellow yellow. Never trusting my instincts I suspected labor initiation about 10 pm May 29th. I called the midwife on call, Becky thought it was too early. We called around to get someone to watch our sleeping kiddos as in my gut and knowing my track record for speedy deliveries we decided to veto the midwife's assumptions. Wishing and washing around as I tend to do I feared inconveniencing many and doubted that this was the real thing as I wasn't in any pain yet we went anyway. We called about three folks on our list and none were available. We called Clinton. He was out on the town with friends and reluctant...could it wait? Um, not really, so he came over and his life was ruined for the next 40 hours. We stopped at the gas station, drove to the hospital, 20 minutes about-no traffic at midnight and nonchalantly strolled up to the Maternity level. Felt like we were coming home, baby number five to be entering the world via Providence Portland Hospital. At the desk I felt like saying, "I'll have the regular..." Instead I told them I thought maybe I was in labor. Michelle was our first nurse. She checked my cervix, dilated to a 4 or 5. Phew, in my mind that solidified that this was active labor....I DID know what I was talking about! Now give me my epidural. Please. But then Becky Bruns, the midwife checked and since my contractions were so irregular she wasn't ready to allow an epidural. Boo, hiss! Instead, go walk stairs for a couple hours and come back to be checked. So up and down 6 flights I headed. Coach Eli suggested I do what he did for basketball drills-hop stairs. So I did and let me tell you this was sadly the hardest I had worked out in a long time. But, may I remind you, I had a purpose in mind for being at this location and that purpose was 1st to have and epidural and 2nd to have a baby. I was not going to be a fool sent home so hop I did and contract this uterus did. It worked like a charm. After an hour of exerting power from within things were getting mighty painful. Eli suggested we go back and tell them to check again...and this time around dilated to about a 7. So yes, they got this woman her epidural. Thank you body for cooperating and quickly accepting an iv and thank you anaesthetist for this modern miracle. The pain leading up to the epidural was getting mighty unbearable. I was quite relieved to have the pain subside. Becky was simultaneously delivering another baby and trying to time both appropriately. I decided to take a nap. And told Eli to do the same. So after a couple hours of sleeping Michelle and Becky came back and suggested maybe we have this baby. Awakening from my dreamy slumber my first impression was, "Nah, how about I sleep some more." Quickly realizing this wasn't going to be the option I had I said, "Ok." The expectation was this baby would melt out but it wasn't quite as smooth as that. It took about 20 minutes to persuade the guy as opposed to a few minutes, probably a result of the face up position. Not too shabby. Before he was born Eli had a spell feeling low sugar levels and of course the impending trauma and excitement developing before his very eyes. Becky suggested he drink some orange juice and automatically he was fine again. He helped catch the baby supporting as needed and soon our little guy entered this world. Dried him off and put him in my arms. I hadn't yet had a good look at his face, feeling winded and my pulse was very low even after getting extra oxygen I was sure I'd soon enough get my chance. My first thoughts about this little boy in my arms were interrupted by a quick baby pee on my abdomen. Well, he was here. Our littlest Milliman, our little son. 8 lbs 6 ounces, 21 inches long and healthy on all accounts born at 6:39 am May 30th and apparently encased in one of the healthiest and heaviest placenta's Becky had ever seen. Not too sure what that indicates but we'll take it. He latched to my breast easily, seemed a little fussy and congested the first day but we cut him the slack deserved. He'd been through a lot. Eli and I are peacefully happy to have another precious baby boy in our family. Eli nurturing and loving our little infants is the epitome of what I love him for. He is most tender to the vulnerable who need extra love and care. Eager to give of his heart and time to the little people in his life. The big people, too. At nights when I feel most exhausted with all of our babies and little Phineas Coltrane is finding this truth now, Daddy is always there with a song, a tight swaddle, a prickly kiss that makes tender baby skin red and lots of love and gentility and wonder bringing comfort and joy to a sad or worried heart. This week we are taking a weeks vacation from work and this week we have to just be a family and to rest and to get to know the new little spirit that has come into our lives feels like time standing still. Disconnect from all the travails and stresses that daily we must bog through are forgotten for a brief interval. How I wish it could continue but nonetheless thankful we have this small window. We love our little Phineas. You are beautiful and bring heaven near.