Saturday, August 31, 2013


Dad ROCKS!!!

Good morning world!

I got my act cleaned up and I'm a changed little man

Home sweet home

We had a great first night and everyone got a few hours of actual sleep.  While we were very pleased with the professionalism and care our nurses provided, it's been heaven to not be interrupted every 10 minutes.

Friday, August 30, 2013

Getting ready to go home


Baby Jonah had to be taken away from us to spend time in the transition NICU until he was 6 hours old.  Daddy stayed with him the entire time and made sure he was touched and squeezed and talked to and loved.  For someone who's been saying he doesn't know what to do with a baby, I've been pretty darn impressed.  He's been nothing but the sweetest daddy to the sweetest baby. 

Baby had several small red flags that together caused some concern.  One by one we are checking them off and passing the tests.  The first was breathing.  Jonah had that under control about 15 minutes into his NICU stay.  He has strong lungs, just had a lot of fluid.  Then he had to show us his blood wasn't infected and just in case it was he's been on rounds on antibiotics.  Here's Daddy holding him during a round:

Luckily everything is done in our room now, but it also means we get no sleep and have something on the schedule non stop. Since we got up at 4:00 am on Wednesday I've had a total of about 2 hours sleep in 20 minute spurts.  I feel like I should be making a really huge salary or running a large country for this sort of workload, ha!  I guess making a human is bigger than either.

The other test we worked to pass (and did) was a high count for jaundice.  Baby got this under control too and was cleared.

Of course baby has all the regular mile markers newborns need to pass as well, and Nonni was especially proud baby passed his hearing test with flying colors! He was showing off for her. :-)

We have made enough progress now we get to go home today instead of tomorrow!!  We are thrilled and anxious to get there. A big step was getting the IV out of Jonah's hand.  It's finally gone!  We're on our way!!

Jonah is such a calm and sweet baby.  He just started letting out some big cries today and they rattle his mama pretty well.  So while mom and baby cry together dad calms us down.  It's a pretty good little team we've got going.  Howard and the cry babies.  We should be a band.

Thanks for your excitement and prayers.

Hillary of Howard and the Cry Babies

The world's best doctor

Our doctor and his staff have taken such good care of us with Elijah and with Jonah.  We love their expertise and emotional investment in our babies and could not have gotten through either experience without them.  Thank you Baby Team!!!

Sweet baby Jonah is here!!

He is a dream.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Another Kind of Comfort

In my last post I shared with you our fun visit to the charming town of Comfort, TX.  It wasn't very comfortable because of the heat, but it made for a great afternoon date!  We found good chairs, outdoor fans and misters, and cold drinks to pass our time and endure that dog day of south Texas summer.  It's funny how we so earnestly seek out ways to take care of ourselves.  We have survival instincts gone first world mania.

We all like being comfortable.  We like modern day conveniences, good health, stable finances, successful relationships, a good reputation, great entertainment, and yummy food.  All of these things make us comfortable, and they aren't bad things.  But I know that they can trick us into thinking they really work.

How many times have you eaten a wonderful meal and never been hungry again in your life?  Has an excellent film followed by great discussion with wonderful friends satisfied you so much that you never did anything fun again?

These comforts we seek are fleeting, so we keep seeking them in the same form over and over like we're trying to live out the definition of insanity.  I think we are designed to seek comfort, but these things are simply reflections or clues as to what we're really supposed to be after.

We're going about finding comfort all wrong because we're trying to find comfort.  That's right.  If we want lasting comfort, we shouldn't be seeking comfort itself.  We should be seeking truth.

C.S. Lewis writes in the classic Mere Christianity:

“In religion, as in war and everything else, comfort is the one thing you cannot get by looking for it. If you look for truth, you may find comfort in the end: if you look for comfort you will not get either comfort or truth - only soft soap and wishful thinking to begin with and, in the end, despair.”

What will you decide will satisfy you today, and will it last until tomorrow?

Friday, August 9, 2013


There are two different types of comfort I'd like to chat about.  Today I'll talk about the first.  It's a charming little town in the Texas hill country called Comfort!
Howard and I decided to take a trip out here one afternoon this week as a little mid-day date.
It was so fun!  It was hot (really really hot) and I was tired, but I forced myself to go because I'm savoring these last few moments of just Howard and me.   (Though he reminds me it hasn't been just the two of us for a while now...that's true.  This little Kidlet has already made his presence widely known and requiring of life adjustments...namely an increased food budget and lack of sleep.)
Isn't it just adorable?
I thought this was a great name for a restaurant - the Plaid Goat.
This was super depressing.  Elmer's glue, Crayola crayons, Fiskars scissors, and Rose Art pencils in an ANTIQUE store?  Really?  I'm not even 30 yet.
We stopped at this cute little corner place for some cold drinks.
I was brave and ordered a Cactus Pear soda.  It was pretty good!  It had a fruity flavor and a weird sweet aftertaste.
It was the perfect spot to take a load off (I carry a big one) and sit in the shade with misters and sunshine peeking through.
Then sitting time was over when I saw this sign across the street.
It was at a neat little shop called Miss Giddy's.
They had the most awesome handbag there - the Mighty Purse!  Have you heard of this?  It charges your phone during the day while you're out and about!!  Love it!
This was my view for a little bit while I sat on some porch rockers and waited for my patient husband to go get the car.  When I'm done I'm done.
Before we headed back home we drove around to look at houses.  We're not in the market, but simply love pretending we are. : )  I liked this one.  A lot.  Which according to our "Hillary's likes conversion chart" meant it was approximately $600K.  We looked it up.  It was $600K.  That chart is very accurate.

See you back soon for the next kind of comfort! : )

Wednesday, August 7, 2013


Good morning!  I hope you've had a well rested night and come to this blog refreshed and rejuvenated.

I haven't and don't.

But that's ok.  I've decided to accept that getting little sleep is my new normal now.  The Kidlet is due in just about 3 weeks and let me just say - we are both ready!!

The Kidlet is our second child.  Our first is in Heaven.  His name is Elijah Howard.  We call him Eli.  It's hard to believe that this fall it will have been one whole year since we lost him.  It seems like last week.

I started a blog about Eli when I found out I was pregnant with him.  It's pretty full of anger.  Losing a baby makes you so, so angry.  But in a way I'm glad it made me angry.  It's a sign I understand how and why Eli is a full-fledged person, and not a mere piece of tissue.  We'll get into that here on this blog as well.  I want you, too, to be able to articulate why an unborn baby is a person with rights and with value.  I want you to understand how an unborn baby is someone's child, and why the grief process of pregnancy loss has been labeled the hardest to work through because of those societal misunderstandings.

I'm still working through a lot of grief.  It's one thing to understand how the world works on paper.  It's quite another to live out that understanding.

You'll get to know the Kidlet plenty here, and can start by reading his interviews over at "Sips with the Kidlet."

For today, I want to introduce you to Eli with a couple of posts from his old blog.  Both of my babies bring me such joy.  Sure, there's a lot of pain in losing Eli, and a lot of anxiety in expecting the Kidlet.  But they are my sons and amidst the pain and worry they both bestow incredible joy.  Even though Eli's not with us, we believe he continues to live in Heaven.  We remember the sweet times with him and how much he changed our lives for the good.  His Daddy says his extra chromosome gave him superpowers to do all sorts of neat stunts. : )  I just love that.  What a great Daddy.

Enjoy meeting Eli below!  Thanks for stopping by.  Come back soon!


Baby boy

This is Eli.
It’s his 7 week picture. I have one of when he was older, where you can see his cute little gummy bear body, but I like this one. It’s the last one of him alive.
We know sweet Eli is a boy because he had an autopsy. It’s a special kind where geneticists can actually analyze his chromosomes. When I found out this was available for the purpose of finding out what caused his death, I begged for them to also tell us the gender. This wasn’t a conventional use of the chromosomal testing, but I figured hey – if you’re already in there with the things, gender would be a pretty easy structure to determine. 
It was so sweet to know this important detail of who our child is (although I could’ve told you the same thing when I was about 6 weeks and got a sense of immediate displeasure from my womb when I walked into Anthropologie).
A sweet baby boy. I think he’s just like his daddy.


The box a sweet friend gave me to house the cards and notes we got in Eli’s passing.
The tiny sapphire we had added to my wedding band in honor of Eli and the month in which he began his life.
The picture of my husband and me at school on what was probably the last day of Eli’s life.
These are a few of my favorite things.