Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Nathan's big first day

When you're born at 1:48 in the morning, you can fit a lot into your first day! After we all slept for three hours or so, it was time to get up for the day! What fun for Matt and me to spend some quiet moments with our youngest little cutie!

Big Brothers Ian and Ryan came to meet Nathan around 8:30, on their way to church with Uncle Jon and Aunt Chelsea. When he walked into our hospital room, Ian didn't even say hi; he just asked, "Where's Nathan!?!??" He rushed over to Nathan's crib to admire Nathan. What a proud big brother!
Of course, Ian wanted to hold Nathan right away! Even from the beginning, Ian was gentle and tender with his littlest brother.
Ryan was equally proud of and excited about his little brother, though not quite as gentle :). Ryan looked on happily, pointing out many of Nathan's features, like his eyes, nose, and mouth.

Then it was Ryan's turn to be the Big Brother baby holder. He was SO happy!
Then it was time for Aunt Chelsea and Uncle Jon to hold their newest nephew. (They had done a great job taking care of Ian and Ryan the night before and got them all ready for church in their "big brother" t-shirts. Thanks, guys!)

Then, it was time for the older boys to open the presents that Nathan had gotten for them. Somehow Nathan knew all about the electronic construction vehicles his brothers had been drooling over in Costco.
Ian and Ryan were SO excited about their new toys and loved zooming them all over the hospital room.
Time for a family picture before Jon and Chelsea took Ian and Ryan to church ...
So sweet ...
After a nice nap and lunch, we were excited to welcome some more visitors! Our friend from small group, Sarah, brought her mom and son (Owen) to meet Nathan. Owen will be a big brother in just a few months, so we thought it would be nice to invite Owen to experience seeing a momma and baby in the hospital before it was HIS momma and HIS new baby. He did a great job holding Nathan!

Soon after, our friend Aliceson came to meet Nathan! (We had just stripped Nathan down to try to wake him up to nurse. Ha!)
After dinner, Matt's co-worker and friend from school, Mark, and his wife, Kris, came to meet Nathan. They have three grown sons of their own (including one named Nathan), so we'll need to ask them for lots of advice along the way!

Around 8:30 or 9:00, Nathan got to meet his Grammy and Papa for the first time. (Kim's mom had bought a plane ticket for this day months before ... nice timing, Nathan, and good guess, Grammy! Kim's dad was able to get a last-minute plane flight on a different airline once he heard Kim was in labor. Thanks, Uncle Jon, for being the chauffeur to pick them up, and thanks, Aunt Chelsea, for single-handedly getting our big boys dinner and baths so they could come back to the hospital.) It was so fun seeing Papa and Grammy meet grandchild #6!
They've done lots of baby-holding and baby-loving over the past five years!

Ian insisted on holding his little brother again! So sweet!

Then, we were thrilled that Kim's dad was able to baptize Nathan, even while it was still his birthday! Thank you, Dad, for making the special effort to come quickly! It was special that Uncle Jon and Aunt Chelsea (two of Nathan's sponsors) were able to be there and that Uncle Jason and Aunt Amy (Nathan's other two sponsors) were able to be "present" via Skype. We are so thankful to have these four faith-filled, Christ-centered role models praying for Nathan's spiritual growth.

Papa did a nice job including Ian and Ryan in the baptism, too, by explaining things in a way they could understand. He compared baptism to washing our hands -- just water alone is not enough to clean our hands; instead, we use water AND soap. Similarly, in baptism, the water alone does not wash away our sins; instead, we use water WITH God's Word. 

We all watched with happiness and pride as Nathan became one of God's own children. What a miracle ... and what a privilege that God calls us to be part of His family and gives us His promises of forgiveness and eternal life!

We all sang "I Was Baptized, Happy Day!" together after Papa baptized Nathan in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

What a wonderful, busy, eventful first day! :) We're excited to spend many, many more days with you, sweet Nathan!

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Welcome, Nathan Paul!

Early on Saturday, November 15, Kim started having some contractions that made her wonder, "Could THIS be the day that we meet our newest son?!?" We texted Jon & Chelsea, asking them to be on stand-by to watch our boys. But, though the contractions continued the entire day, the contractions didn't get closer together or fall at regular intervals ... so we just waited at home. Since Kim was induced with Ian and Ryan, Kim kept wondering if she would know if or when it was time to go to the hospital. Finally, late Saturday afternoon, we called Jon and Chelsea to ask them if they would mind coming over to play some games with us after the boys went to bed and then plan to spend the night in case we'd have to go to the hospital quickly. Thankfully, they agreed ... By the time they arrived around 7:30 p.m., Kim's contractions were much more intense and regular. In fact, just moments after Jon & Chelsea walked in the door, we headed out for the hospital.

We arrived at the hospital around 8:00. After getting checked by the triage nurse and finding out Kim was already dilated to 6 cm, Kim was in a delivery room between 9:00 and 9:30 p.m.

The labor progressed smoothly, and Kim got an epidural around 11:00 p.m. The anesthesiologist did a "60% epidural," which meant that Kim was actually able to move her legs around while not feeling any pain ... perfect! Interestingly, Kim's contractions got much more intense but never got much closer together than 5 minutes apart. After just four or five big pushes, Nathan Paul arrived at 1:48 a.m. on Sunday, November 16. He gave a strong, healthy cry right away.

Seeing our sweet boy for the first time brought tears to our eyes and joy to our hearts! We thanked our amazing Creator-God for blessing us so abundantly through this new little one and for granting Kim a smooth, easy delivery!
Matt was able to cut Nathan's umbilical cord. (Thankfully, our friendly, sweet nurse was a million times better at her nursing job than at photography.) :)
What a handsome boy!
Here was our fabulous "delivery crew." Dr. Berryhill (2nd from left) delivered Nathan. Though he's not our regular OB, we thought he was just fantastic, as was our dear nurse, Jennyfer (far right).
We were surprised that Nathan weighed in at 8 lb., 14 oz. after our ultrasound tech and OB guessed he'd be just 8 lb.
Nurse Stacey was Nathan's nurse. She measured him (he was 21 inches long)
and monitored his temperature for a while.
Daddy Matt lovingly looked on. :)
Soon afterward, it was time for all of Nathan's pretty brown hair to be washed
and for him to receive his first sponge bath. He wasn't a huge fan.
Here's our handsome boy, all clean! :)

What a blessing for these proud parents to cuddle our new, mellow, adorable baby!
Thank you, Jesus, for the gift of sweet baby Nathan!