Sunday, April 23, 2017

Jeff Gets Mommy Boot Camped

A few days before I had Jonah, Jeff sat me down for a heart to heart. "I'm just really stressed out." He confessed. "What's stressing you out?" I asked. "Well, I'm in the middle of busy season. The new baby is coming any day. The boys' birthdays are coming up." He said the last stresser as if it was the most overwhelming.

"Why are you stressed about the boys' birthdays? I usually do everything for the boys' birthdays. I'm not even stressed about it." I tried to reason with him. 

"I don't know!" He shot back. "It's just a lot going on!"

And then I had Jonah 3 days before Carson's birthday, and all Jeff's stresses were overwhelmingly justified. Without either of our parents to fall back on in the weeks following Jonah's birth, Jeff and I were tasked to pull ourselves together on our own. My top priority was to recover as quickly as possible which meant doing as little as possible for as long as possible. 

Jeff's top priority was to take over the mom jobs to make it easy for me to relax and recover. First task hit him hours after arriving home from the hospital when it was time to put the kids to bed and get the house snazzed up for Carson's birthday the next day. 

As soon as the kids were asleep, Jeff jumped right into action. He got balloons filled up, he hung the birthday sign, and he made sure the presents were all wrapped just so, so everything was ready for the birthday boy first thing in the morning. 
Not only was it Carson's birthday, it was also Easter. Jeff wanted to do an Easter egg hunt for the kids in the morning, so not only did he prepare for birthday festivities, he had a whole Easter party going on. (All while I was peacefully sleeping and recovering and unaware any of this was going on while I was locked up in my room with baby.)
And not only was it Carson's birthday AND Easter, it was also Sunday which meant Jeff was tasked with taking 3 little boys to church all by himself. And not only did he have to take them to church all by himself, Carson had the scripture and Eli had the talk in primary. Jeff got thrown straight into the fire, but handled it all with ease!

When Jonah and I finally emerged, the boys fought over turns holding their new brother. 
 Carson is generally the most trustworthy with Jonah, though this picture may leave you questioning his abilities. He has to hold Jonah as soon as I bring him downstairs every day. While the other boys like to hold Jonah too, they usually only have about 2 minutes worth of baby-holding patience. Carson, on the other hand, will sit and hold Jonah for a good 10-15 minutes before giving him up, oooohhhhing and aaaahhhhhing his teensiness and cuteness all the while.
Eli loves to check in on Jonah throughout the day and always makes sure he's taken care of. He has also started teaching Jonah lessons to help him learn about life. He spent an afternoon finding objects and holding them up to Jonah, explaining how they were the same and how they were different. It's cute to see how each kid bonds with their new little bro.
Lincoln's bonding has come in the form of walking a mile in Jonah's shoes by trying out all his binkies, sitting in his bouncer, and he's even started referring to himself as Jonah. He's having a bit of an identity crisis with a new baby in the house, but he's slowly warming up to the tiny intruder. 
 While Jeff took the boys to church, Jonah and I napped and photo-shooted. I enjoyed a nice, quiet afternoon, especially when I considered the chaos Jeff was dealing with at church.

Jeff came home to report the boys did awesome through sacrament meeting and did their talk and scripture to perfection. He cooked us up a nice Easter/Birthday dinner and then boiled up some eggs so the boys wouldn't miss out on Easter egg dying. 
Then we sang to our 5-year-old who had requested a Minecraft TNT cake for his birthday. In anticipation of potentially having a baby interfere with Carson's birthday, I had already baked the cake and had it in the freezer. I had great plans to get the cake frosted on the Thursday before Carson's birthday...but something else came up that day. Jeff got everything out for me in the morning and I decorated it in a safe, seated position.

Carson is such a fun boy! He's always one to crack a joke and try to make people laugh. He's so clever and energetic. He blows everyone away with his reading. He taught himself how to read by diligently watching Eli work on his homework for the last two years. He loves playing Minecraft with Eli. He loves Legos and trains and tractors and spending half of his life flipped upside down on the couch. He's spunky, he's not one to cave to peer pressure, he just does what he wants no matter what other people are doing. We love having this sweet boy in our family!
Jeff got the kids tucked in bed grateful the great test of his homemaking skills was now behind him, but feeling the need to rest up for a week of packing school lunches, carpool, park trips, nap battles, diaper changes, house cleaning and meal planning that lay ahead of him.

Meanwhile, the only thing that laid ahead of me was this sweet baby and our double naps every afternoon.

Jonah has been my first baby who (at least so far) doesn't appear to have his days and nights mixed up. He has been so good to go right back to sleep when I feed him at night. Between his awesome sleeping and our daily naps, I've felt quite chipper through this recovery. 
 Mandatory morning snuggles.

I feel like I had an unofficial baby shower for Jonah. People have spoiled us with gifts and treats and meals. We've been feeling the love from friends and family who have helped welcome Jonah into our family.

We survived week 1 as a family of 6 thanks to Jeff's dutiful care of all of us. Here's to hoping I can pull it off as well as he did when he returns back to work this week. (Eeek!)


Rebecca said...

Jeff's making all us moms look bad! We didn't even get around to dyeing eggs this year! (...or last year...)

Every single picture of Jonah and the boys is SO ADORABLE. I can't handle it. I always said, if you insist on having a family full of boys, at least make sure they're cute. Mission accomplished!

Kim said...

Loved the stories of how Jeff jumped right in to take over with all the homemaking skills and duties. IMPRESSIVE!! Loved the dialog and loved hearing you were able to get so much rest the first week post delivery. What a cute baby!