Thursday, August 4, 2016

Welcome, Kaelyn Grace!

We had Kailey's baby shower for Kaelyn at the beginning of April because her due date wasn't until May 5th. Well, all that changed at the end of April when Kailey got some bloodwork results back that showed she needed to be induced immediately. It wasn't anything life threatening but she tested positive for Fifth's Disease, which is not good for a pregnant woman, so her doctor recommended that they go ahead and induce. Her due date was only a week away so Kaelyn was fully cooked and ready to go :) Kailey sent out a text Wednesday letting everyone know what the plan was, so I immediately requested a sub for the next day at school, came home, packed my things, and left for my mom and dad's house. The next morning we were up bright and early and we headed to the hospital to see Kailey and Caleb. 

Even though she was being induced Kailey wanted the birth to progress as naturally as possible. She really did a great job! 

When Mom and I got to the hospital, there wasn't much activity. Kailey was having steady contractions, but they hadn't started her on pitocin yet, so she was in a great mood. Mom and I sat around and watched movies with them in their hospital room. 

We grabbed some lunch at Chick-fil-a and when we came back, Kailey's labor had started to progress a little more. She needed some quiet time so we went to the waiting room and visited with everyone while the moms and dads took turns going back to Kailey's room. Andrea and the kids showed up and they really livened up the waiting room :) They were so excited about getting a new baby cousin, but they were mostly excited about the snacks Kailey's mom, Shelly, had with her. They were in hog heaven!

We gave the kids iPads and snacks and they never made a peep again, except to ask for another snack. They were quite content. 

It was starting to get late in the day and I knew that I was going to have to leave baby or no baby. We had a field trip planned the next day and I didn't want to get a sub for that. I decided to stick around until about 7:30 or 8:00 that night because I'd still make it home at a decent time if I left around then. Kailey's brother and his girlfriend arrived so our waiting room group really grew. We all talked, visited, watched TV, worked (I was grading math tests), and snacked. 

8:00 came and Kailey wasn't anywhere close to being ready to deliver. I knew I had to go say my good-byes. I hated that I wasn't going to be there to see Kaelyn when she was born. She just was taking her sweet and precious time about entering this world and reminding all of us that you can't plan everything ;)

I took one more picture with Kailey and Caleb, said goodbye to everyone, and drove home. Kailey had gotten her epidural at this point so she was feeling great :)

I made it home and checked in with everyone back at the hospital. Kailey had only progressed a little bit during my drive back and was still a long time away from delivering. I visited with Josh, kissed Eli goodnight and then got ready for bed myself. It had been a long day. I sat my phone on my nightstand and made sure it was not turned to silent. I didn't want to miss the text or pictures saying that Kaelyn had arrived while I was sleeping. 

Sure enough, in the wee hours of Friday, April 29th, I got a text saying that Kaelyn Grace had arrived and she and Kailey were doing great. I immediately fell in love with this precious blue-eyed beautiful new niece of mine. I couldn't wait to meet her. What a wonderful gift from God!

Thursday, July 28, 2016

San Francisco: NCTM Conference

Thursday morning we were all up bright and early for the NCTM math conferences. The night before I planned my day and selected the different conferences I wanted to attend. There were so many math teachers in attendance from all over the country. It was such a great learning experience to be with other educators and share what works, what doesn't work, and how we can always improve on our math instruction. If you know me, then you know that I'm new to teaching fourth grade math. Most of my teaching background is in the first grade. Let me tell you, there's a lot of ground to cover between math in first grade and math in fourth grade. Whew! I enjoyed the two days of conferences and I came away with a lot of good information that I can't wait to share with my coworkers. Plus, walking around the city of San Francisco on my way to the different conference rooms was so nice. The weather alone put me in a great mood every single day. 

After a full day of conferences, it was nice to unwind each night with some chips and dip and a Dr. Pepper at the restaurant at the top of our hotel. The view was incredible! 

Thursday night we had a great dinner beside the bay and spent the evening discussing what we'd learned from all of our conferences that day and since we had a teacher from the elementary, middle, and high school on this trip we were all able to share a different perspective on all of our conferences. We were all learning so many new things to help make our teaching more engaging for our students. We ended our night with some yummy ice cream and headed to bed.

Friday was basically a repeat of Thursday. We each had conferences from 8:00 until about 5:00 that evening. Our brains were swimming with math information overload at this point :) We ended our last night in San Francisco with dinner at a really neat restaurant called The Stinking Rose, an Italian restaurant that was known for its insane amounts of garlic it served with each dish. We were all reeking of garlic when we left but it was a fun experience! We walked back to our hotel and on the way ate some more ice cream because vacation :) What a fun trip this had been! We were able to see and visit so many new places, eat incredible food, ride the historic cable cars, and engage with such a wonderful group of educators. The NCTM conference was such a wonderful learning opportunity for me and I hope I can attend another one in the future.

San Francisco: Visting Wine Country

We knew that we wouldn't have a lot of time but we all wanted to just see what wine country looked like. It didn't take long to get to the outer edges of wine country from Sausalito and soon we were surrounded by rolling hills and acres and acres of vineyards. We had entered Sonoma :) We didn't have a particular winery in mind so we agreed to just stop at the first winery we saw. That led us to Viansa Winery and I must say it was beautiful!

The Viansa Winery provided some of the most stunning photographs ever. The entire property looked like it was from a movie set. I joked that the only thing that would have made it better was if this was Italy instead of California. (Italy is DEFINITELY a Bucket List Trip for me!)

While a few of the girls decided to do a wine tasting, I opted to roam the property and take pictures. I'm not a wine drinker so me spending money on tasting wines didn't sound like much fun or make much sense. I had so much fun walking around and seeing all the rows and rows of grapevines. 

The girls met me outside after about 30 minutes or so and we loaded up and continued to the next winery, the Jacuzzi Winery. Once again, I was stunned at the beautiful scenery surrounding us.

At the Jacuzzi Winery they did FREE wine tasting, so I decided to jump in and taste some because "when in Rome..." I'll say this I didn't hate it, but I didn't like it. I'm just not someone that is ever going to enjoy ending the day with a  glass of wine. Now if there had been a sweet tea bar...hello, you have my attention :) #southerngirlatheart I did leave the winery with a bottle of red something or other for Josh though because he does enjoy a glass of red wine at night. (He's more refined than me, haha!)

The last winery we visited was Cline Winery. They were extremely nice and helpful here and once again their grounds surrounding the winery were beautiful. Seriously, all these people worked in gorgeous locations! They also did free wine tasting so I participated one last time. I enjoyed talking to the men who worked here because they were so knowledgable and passionate about their wine. You could tell that wine was truly a love of theirs and getting to share that with others made their day. Josh ended up with another bottle of wine from this winery :) After purchasing it, I spent the rest of my time walking around the grounds taking pictures. 

I wish that we could have visited more wineries but three is all our time allowed. We needed to head back to San Francisco so we'd have time to wind down before our math conferences started the next day. I must say that we did SO much in the limited time we had in San Francisco, and it's a city that I truly fell in love with. I can't wait to come back one day with my family so I can enjoy it even more! 
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