Saturday, November 28, 2015

How it all went down...

Hey there Little Big Guy!

Time has been flying by, but for your sake (and mine) I wanted to make sure I captured a few things before the little moments fade away...

Two weeks before my due date my water broke in the middle of the night. When we got to the hospital we learned that when mother nature acts up, our bodies respond. I was one of 15 women who showed up that morning with broken water after the lunar eclipse the night before. As excited as I was to meet you, I knew we were in for a long wait. since my body wasn't quite ready for delivery.

While we waited for you, Dad bought me a puzzle to keep me busy. I did most of the work, while Dad, visitors, and even some nurses helped out! It was a fun conversation piece, and it helped keep me distracted while Dad massaged my back during the early contractions.

Putting together the puzzle with a little help from Grandpa Dean
Lots of loved ones stayed in touch during our wait. Andrea texted and called making sure I was taken care of throughout Monday and Tuesday. Mimi and I talked often so she could check on my progress and help encourage me, and Dustin (my boss and our good friend) even sent chocolates up from the gift shop after I posted a particularly discouraging text on Facebook Tuesday morning. Grandma Jean and Grandpa Dean got into town Monday night and stopped in from time to time to check on us and make sure we had what we needed to get through.

After about 26 hours in the hospital my contractions were intense enough to be wheeled down to the delivery room. It was about an hour later I decided to get the epidural, and we didn't think you'd be born until close to 9pm that night. Andrea stopped by with Grayson and Weston a few hours later, and it just so happened they got there right as you were ready to come! They were so excited to be there right in time so they hung out in the lobby during the delivery.

I must say, once you were ready, you definitely decided not to dilly dally, and your mama is grateful for that! After just a few pushes I heard you cry and the next thing I knew there you were right on my chest! It was one of the most incredible and unforgettable moments of my life, and nothing felt more right than having you in my arms with your Dad right there beside us!

We spent a few minutes alone with just the three of us. Andrea, Weston and Grayson were the first to meet you, and shortly after there were grandparents there to meet you as well! You even waited long enough to deliver that Mimi met you just a few hours after you were born. The next day I think the hospital wasn't sure what to do with all of your visitors! Suzanne, ReRe (Rita), Mimi, Grandma and Grandpa Cottle, and Andrea and kids were all there to see you and spend time with you. At one point there were 14 people in our little hotel room! We loved every second of being with our loved ones and sharing your "birthday party" with them.

Just a glimpse into our room and visitors
Grandma Jean
With Andrea and Grayson just after you were born
Grandpa Dean 
So little and new!!
After you were born Dad had a few extra days off to be with us. Mimi stayed with us for 10 days to help me adjust to life as a mommy, and help out around the house so we didn't have to worry about anything but you! It was awesome to have some time with my mom while I snuggled and loved you. I just loved sharing you with her, especially since I know she didn't get to share her babies with her mom. I never appreciated how hard it was for her to lose her mom so young until I got old enough to realize that sometimes a girl needs her mom the most when she's all grown up.

Devin and Mimi
One night while Mimi was here Dad and I went on a date. I knew we needed to enjoy some time alone, but I was still so emotional that I cried as soon as we left the house and couldn't figure out what we could do that would be gentle enough on my tender soul. I suggested we walk around the temple grounds for a bit and he agreed that was a good idea. I felt an amazing peace fill up my soul as we pulled into the parking lot, and I felt the heaviness lift away. I am so happy to be your mom, but I worried so much about you every second of every day after you were born, and it was hard to take it all in. Being at the temple reminded me that you are ours forever, and that no matter what happens the Lord is with us and we are sealed beyond just this life. I also felt my Savior's love for our family, and I knew it was all going to be okay, even if I'm not always the perfect mom. We weren't quite dressed to go to the temple, but we decided to go in anyway and we spent a few minutes sealing other families together. I can think of nothing more precious we could have done that night than to be reminded of the covenants we made to each other, and the covenants that have sealed you to us. We love you little big guy so very much and can't wait to see what life has in store for you!


Mom and Dad

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Blessing Day

We had many friends and family in town a few weeks ago to celebrate Devin's first small step as a part of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. He was blessed by his Dad, along with both grandpas, a cousin who happened to be in town, and a few other dear friends. This blessing is a prayer signifying the addition of his name to the records of the church (even though he won't be officially baptized and confirmed a member until he is 8 years old), along with a sweet words of counsel and love as he begins his journey in this life.

The day was hectic but we did manage to get some fun photos of some of our loved ones here that day. Grandma Jean also did a photo shoot with just Devin in the amazing blessing outfit she made for his special day. I feel so blessed that Devin is surrounded by so much love.

Mimi and Papa
Four generations of Cottles
Mom and Dad with Devin
All of the Cottles that traveled down to be with us
Dad and Brad taking advantage of a little downtime
The Krause family.
This is our Florida family and we couldn't have captured a
more perfect shot. We love them so much!
One of my favorites pictures of the day. Devin so content with his Mimi
Devin's cute smile.