Wednesday, November 12, 2008

First Fall Action

There's lots to get to, so let's get going...

Think Blue?

So Hayvn had his first big day at the ballpark on Sept 20th. That's dodger stadium. What a night. Four months old and already rooting on the boys in blue. You should know that Hayvn's Great Grandpa, Walt (a.k.a Pa), was a huge Dodgers fan. When getting ready for Hayvn's first ballgame, Mama had to school Daddy on the fact that Hayvn, who is named after said Great Grandpa, would not be rooting for the Giants that night. Daddy, a Giants fan simply because the boys hail from the City of his heart, San Francisco, was not happy...but he had to concede when he saw there really was no way to win. Hayvn would bleed Dodger blue, just like Pa...and just like his aunt jenny for that matter (who lovingly made Hayvn's first dodgers' outfit!)

First Time on the Sticks

Aw, a proud papa got to hand his boy his first set of drum sticks (albeit, they were for a toy drum). Hayvn doesn't have much rhythm yet (still trying to get that 'control my flailing limbs' piece down), but daddy's got hope...

First Trip to the City

If you know anything about jeremy and i, then you know we left our hearts in SF years ago when we left our home there to move back to the Central Coast. It was a good move, don't get me wrong, but for us, SF will always be the home of our hearts. since moving, we try to get back there at least a few times a year. and i've never thought it was mere coincidence that my birthday happens to fall in October, the BEST month in the City, meaning that an annual birthday trip is always a must. this year we got to take our little man along for the ride. it was so much fun to watch his eyes grow wide and light up looking at all the sights. for a little guy who loves people, the City was the perfect place for him. people couldn't get enough of his yummy sweetness.

a little silliness in the Curiosity shop...

giving a trolley car a raspberry...hayvn's signature move.

some giggles on the Land's End of the most beautiful spots in all the world.

First Pumpkin Patch

a baby amongst baby pumpkins...cute as heck.

First Halloween

so, little bear inspired the selecting of his first halloween costume--a teddy bear! it was almost too much for this mama to see him all dressed up--he was just so dang cute that i almost squeezed the stuffing outta him a couple of times.

mama and baby at farmer's market. talk about stimulation overload...candy, costumes and crazies are the perfect recipe for Farmer’s Rage. good thing this madness happens only once a year.

Hayvn's Baby Dedication

Surrounded by lots of family and friends, we were able to give thanks to the Lord for Hayvn, and to our friends, family and church for all the prayers said for him before he was even realized. our little one is the product of lots of prayer, for sure.

First Time in a Voting Booth

Mama and hayvn helped make history!

First Time in the Crib

After five months and three weeks, we decided to stop using hayvn's expensive crib as storage space for baby crap and decided to start using it to house said sleeping baby. this picture is of his first nap in his crib, in his own room. Consequently, he spent that night in his crib as well and has been in the crib for the last three nights. now when mama gets up three times a night, she's gotta go all the way to his this, i imagine hayvn cunningly twisting his little hands together while chuckling softly to himself, "hehehehe..."

Well, that's all, folks! it's been quite a fall...and i'm sure the holiday season will be just as eventful. our little bear turns six months old on the 28th and we just can't believe it. it's been such a bittersweet journey so far...sweet watch him grow and learn, but sad having to say good-bye, so quickly, to his little newborn self.
...stay tuned to the blog, cause we're trying rice cereal on thanksgiving...can't you just feel the excitement?

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

If you wanna know how we feel...

Please direct yourself to Donald Miller's blog entitled "From Reagan to Obama, a brief Political History" located here:

If you don't have time to read the are some highlights that really spoke to us and reflect why we supoorted Obama because of our faith, not inspite of it...

"a few days ago I did an interview with a writer for The Today Show, and after the interview she asked how it was evangelicals could come to believe the many lies being spread about Barack Obama. In answer I came back to the insular nature of the suburban church. “When we’ve never met people,” I said, “we are easily manipulated into demonizing them. We are easily made to fear.” And I’ll add there has been a great deal of fear in this campaign. I just received a letter, yesterday, from a prominent church leader in Georgia that accused Michelle Obama, who I have met and found to be a lovely and humble woman, of being be a racist. This was not a small-town backwards preacher, this was a best-selling Christian author, who, honestly, should be ashamed of himself."

"Last year I vowed I wouldn’t make decisions out of fear. And because of that I’ve had one of the greatest years of my life. I went to Uganda and got to meet with the man who helped write their constitution. I wrapped up an evangelism project I believe will introduce more than a million people to the gospel. I rode my bike across America. All of this stuff took some degree of risk. But when calculating those risks, I realized the only reason not to try was fear. What if I was wrong, what if I couldn’t make it, what if the project didn’t work? But none of my heroes are controlled by fear. The commandment most often repeated in scripture, in fact, is “do not fear.” Fear is often something unrighteous trying to keep you from doing something good."

"While in Denver I met people from the Obama Campaign. I met Joshua Dubois and Paul Monteiro, Obama’s faith-policy advisors. Paul, like me, had been a Republican until recently. He is a staunch pro-lifer who got tired of Republicans not making enough strides on the issue and was won over by the dramatic effect economic policy has on unwanted pregnancy and the bottom-up effects of economic stimulation as opposed to the conservative, supply-side policy. And Joshua spoke to me about Senator Obama’s personal faith, his commitment to close his events in prayer, his daily morning devotions and his twenty-year history of talking openly about Jesus. I didn’t need to be won over. I’d started a mentoring foundation in Portland two years before and was attracted to Obama’s message on responsible fatherhood (along with his backing of The Responsible Fatherhood Act.)"

"I voted for Barack Obama (we vote early in Oregon) because I think he is right on healthcare (his plan will allow 27 million more Americans, including young, pregnant mothers to be cared for) and he is right on responsible fatherhood. I voted for Barack Obama because he will keep George W. Bush’ Faith-based Partnerships Program in play, only increasing its funding. I voted for Barack Obama because he has the respect of world leaders, which will be necessary to deliberate an American agenda around the world, and I voted for Barack Obama because he had the judgment to oppose the war in Iraq. I’ve taken some blows from the conservative right on my stance, but, even in public debate against McCain representatives, have not been deterred. I will not be guilted, shamed or controlled. I am not going to vote for one candidate because I have been made to fear the other. I support Barack Obama because he has beat back the dark hour of cynicism and irrational fear, and provided hope to a country closing in on itself. I believe there are great days ahead."

We stand with our Christian brother in celebrating this historical day

Monday, October 20, 2008

I waited almost 33 years for you...

As my birthday nears, i am reminded of what milestone i'll really be celebrating this year...

dear hayvn,

i waited almost 33 years to hold your hand.

i waited almost 33 years to kiss your cheek and nuzzle the sweet top of your head.

my little man, i waited almost 33 years to fall in love with your blue eyes, your heart-melting smile and your sometimes impatient spirit.

...and i'd wait another 33 years to hear you call me 'mama' and to see you take your first steps.

i'd wait this long and more to see you stand on your own two feet one day, to hear you argue with me passionately about politics and love, to see how you deal with your blessings and your trials, to know what your favorite color will be or what kind of music you'll like, and to find out if you love the mountains like I think you will.

33 years will pass in the blink of an eye, i'm sure, as i watch you i get to know the man that God has knitted you together to one day become...

my lovely son, you were worth the wait. and every day i am reminded that you, after almost 33 years, are exactly who I prayed you would be. my hayvn.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

[Pushes Husband off his soapbox]

We're getting fired up in the Davenport household...and not in a good way. In a way that wakes us up early in the morning and seems to stay with us as we try to fall asleep at night. I wish this could be a cute post about our most adorable boy (cause, honestly, he is the sweetest most adorable little man ever), but, alas, it is not.

This post is about lying. I hate lying. Lying, to me, is the worst form of disrespect. It's telling the person you're lying to that either 1) you don't care enough about them to be truthful, or 2) that you think they aren't bright enough to seek or understand the truth, or that 3) they're not strong enough to handle the truth. Whichever message you're trying to relay, let me assure you, none of them are acceptable.

Now, I'm about to venture into territory I always swore I'd stay away from in these types of public arenas...are you ready?...politics. Yuck. Having grown up in a very political home, my step-father having been a small time politician (County Supervisor), I know a bit about the game...on both sides of the aisle (as they say). My mother was/is a democrat and my ex-step-father (and father for that matter) was/is a republican. Let me just say this--watching 60 minutes during dinner sometimes led to some heated conversations which resulted in either the throwing of silverware or someone storming out of the room in disgust. Some might think that this would cause me to hate politics, and they'd be right about some aspects of politics. But what it also did for me, and what I appreciate to this day, was that it engaged me. It led me to believe that opinions matter. My opinion matters. It taught me that if you don't show up and participate in the debate, then you aren't worth the American soil you stand on. It also showed me how difficult it is to really reach across the aisle, cause, let's be honest, the two sides differ DRASTICALLY.

But, getting back to lying, what growing up in a political home taught me the most is that you gotta respect your opponent. You gotta believe that they have a right, a voice and an opinion that at least deserves your respectful engagement. So when a candidate lies to me it always prickles my 'hey, that's not fair' hair on the back of my neck. It causes me to take a second look at that person and ask, "why are you disrespecting me? Why are you assuming that I'm either too stupid or too lazy to find out the truth?"

As my little family and I engage in this historical election (gotta love that Hayvn's first presidential election will result in either an African American president or a female veep), we do so with an eager ear to the facts. And I gotta tell you, sometimes those facts get harder to hear among all the crap they're trying to sell us.

So, let me encourage all of you (all 3 of you who may stumble upon our blog from time to time), don't let some one or some group tell you who to vote for this November 4th. I'm getting really tired of the, "Well I always vote this way" or "That's who my [insert organization here] tells me to vote for" mentality. That's weak and lazy...and, honestly, irresponsible. This is too important, folks. This election calls--no it DEMANDS--that we all dig deeper. That we all click onto and REALLY look at who's telling the truth and who's lying. Just as we all learned in Kindergarten--lying is bad.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

**Post Disclaimer**

Below is a little story I wrote for our son, Hayvn. Now some of you might note the silliness of said post. I couldn't agree with you more. But I recently went on a blogging strike cause I was sure that my lack of wit and intelligent observations made me actually an anti-blogger. I mean, who cares about my adventures with my new little son? Not many people, I'm sure.

But, then a very sweet friend of mine freed me when she told me that you can now upload blogs to certain sites that will print them out book style for you to save for all of prosperity. What an idea! I love this... and knowing this, I came to the conclusion that maybe Hayvn would one day want to read all about his first year of life. So suddenly free from the pressure of having to impress you folks, I can now write knowing I only have to impress some future Hayvn...and being his mom, I hope he has some grace for me.

This all being said, I took the soap box away from my husband (periodically) and wrote a little story to Hayvn about how his nickname went from Little Bug to Little Bear on his first camping trip to the High Sierras. His new nickname is so appropriate, that his daddy felt inspired to get a new tattoo for his little man...

Anyway, this is just a warning that most of my posts from now on may be pretty silly, with sentiments that are mostly cheesy...with the exception of Jeremy's public rants. Gotta give the guy some sort of an outlet...

Little Bug Becomes Little Bear

This is the story of how our little Hayvn went from "Little Bug" to "Little Bear" in one short week...

It all started on an early morning in Fresno of all places. Little Bug woke up at the early hour of 5am and was just rearing to go. Go where? Camping! His dad had been filling his ears with wild stories of the High Sierras and Little Bug could barely contain himself when the big morning finally arrived. Today was the day they would drive through Yosemite Valley and up the big ol' Tioga Pass to finally arrive at Silver Lake.

Little Bug was so excited that he often would just fall asleep during his journey...

But as Little Bug and his family came down from Tioga Pass (which is over 11,000 feet up!) Little Bug started to get antsy. Four hours of being content in his car seat was over and it was time for him to get out. Now.

When his family finally pulled into the Silver Lake campground, Little Bug was greeted by new family members. He met his Aunt Sandi, and cousins Brandon and Teddy. He also was greeted by his gramma and pops too. But first things first. After a long drive, Little Bug demanded a meal and some rest before he started exploring the new territory.

After settling in, Little Bug started sight seeing...extensively. There was so much to see. There were trees he'd never met, flowers he'd never smelt and a lake shore he'd never come across in his whole life. He just couldn't believe it. Little Bug was so in love with all he saw, that he deemed blinking a completely useless past time. Who had time for blinking?! Certainly not Little Bug.

But as the time went on and his non-blinking continued through much of his days, Little Bug began to see the error of his ways. Each night, as the sun began to set, Little Bug began to cry and wiggle and just make himself miserable with his new non-blinking rule. But, bless his heart, he just couldn't stop himself from looking. Even while he took a meal, his favorite part of any day, Little Bug's little eyes darted in every direction. As his crying increased and his wiggling got the best of him, his mama and daddy pleaded with their Little Bug to please calm down. But he just couldn't. And his crying got so bad, that Little Bug was no longer a little bug. He grew into a little BEAR! Growling and snarling like he'd never growled or snarled before. Little Bear's parents had no choice but to try to tame the little beast. They reached for the first thing they could find--Little Bear's blanket--and quickly tethered him around his wiggling little head. Little Bear, finally forced to tear his eyes away from the outside, was calmed, and his tired eyes finally closed and his growling finally silenced. Poor Little Bear.

When Little Bear woke up each morning, his non-blinking continued, but his parents had finally mastered the art of blanket-diversion in order to calm Little Bear's growling and snarling. Ah, Little Bear. We're gonna miss our Little Bug, but we embraced our new Little Bear and his non-blinking ways...

Besides, we know that deep down inside of you our Little Bug lives on...

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Land of orphan couches

Every year around this time San Luis becomes the home to thousands of orphans...Lost, displaced, and lonely. Couches and recliners left broken-hearted on the corners of this great city. You might ask yourself, "How is this happening in my town?" But there is no easy answer.

Monday, September 1, 2008

People who suck: don't stop for pedestrians

It is now common for me to approach cross-walks with apprehension, why? Because people suck. They think solely of themselves...not the family with a newborn trying to cross the road who's legal right it is to cross, that right which trumps the rights of the driver who clearly can't see said family or refuses to look in our direction as they very nearly plow through my brood...well wife and child. So I Herby declare that the next oblivious driver shall receive a b.o.b. stroller imprint on their passenger side door and hopefully a pant leg full of hidy-ho...of course Sarah will have to be holding Hayvn for this to work....on second thought I think I'll clap loudly and yell "Hey! Nice job! good one!" Whilst Higuera st. shoppers look on at me, hopefully shaking their heads at the crappy driver and not the chubby guy making an ass of himself by yelling at passing cars. The best part? If you don't look in our direction while you nearly drive though us, WE MUST NOT BE THERE! Can anyone help me think of a creative way to teach these drivers their lesson? For reals...I need real fun suggestions....

Monday, August 4, 2008

When It Don't Come Easy

Yesterday little bug and I were driving to the bakery to deliver Jeremy some lunch. It was Sunday and he had a wedding cake to get out. As we were coming through Shell Beach the trusted ipod put on shuffle played Patty Griffin's "When it Don't Come Easy" from her album Impossible Dream. Now, I've never thought it was just coincidence that this album was released the exact month we got married. I remember its release because, since Patty is one of my favorites, we picked up her new CD on its release date while on our honeymoon in Ashfield, North Carolina. I remember liking the new album a lot, but not really loving it for the probably the first year I listened to it. Then, as Jeremy and I were nearing our 1st anniversary, I suddenly LOVED the album, especially the song "When it Don't Come Easy". I knew without a doubt, that the song was OUR song.

As I listened to the song closely yesterday while little bug dreamed away in the backstreet, the lyrics hit me once again. In the past 4 years I've listened to that song during all different seasons of our marriage--some good and some trying--and there are always different parts of the song that speak to me in different ways to match the season. This is the power of music for me and why I'll always be a lover of lyrics. Anyway, what struck me yesterday where these lines:

"I don't know nothing except change will come
Year after year what we do is undone
Time keeps moving from a crawl to a run
I wonder if we're gonna ever get home

You're out there walking down a highway
And all of the signs got blown away
Sometimes you wonder if you're walking in the wrong direction

But if you break down
I'll drive out and find you
If you forget my love
I'll try to remind you
And stay by you when it don't come easy"

Patty's words make some powerful statements to me when I think about my marriage, especially in our current season of trying to take care of an infant, learn how to be parents and face an uncertain future. Yesterday, while tearing up over this beautiful song and all it represents for me, it hit me like a ton of bricks how lucky I am to have someone willing to find me and save me. And Jeremy does these acts everyday in ways he doesn't even realize. He finds me when he looks at me and sees how tired I am from getting up with our little love all night and he saves me when he takes our wiggling worm of a son and tells me to go lay down to rest for a bit.

Jeremy and I are entering the "All the signs got blown away" season again...and while I'm not gonna sit here and paint a picture of our perfect marriage (there is no such thing), I am going to say that while things are hard and we don't always like each other like we should, I find a tremendous amount of solace and comfort when I look across the sofa and see my sweet husband's sleepy face staring back at me. Maybe it's the fact that I know he's tired too...or that he's the only person who really knows what I feel when Hayvn smiles at me because he feels it too. I know we've only got 4 years of this marriage thing under our belt, and that's really nothing. But in these 4 years we've faced some challenges that have pushed our marriage and our selves in some very difficult ways. But looking back now, I'm thankful for every challenge. I love our shared history. And I love knowing that no matter what, we've got a shared future too.

But in all honesty, I wish he'd shave the beard.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Family Fun Fair Day

We took little bug for his first trip to the Mid-State Fair. As most know who attend this ruckus yearly romp, the Mid-State Fair is not for the faint of heart. It's a lotta people (who are colorful to say the least), a lotta food (most of which is deep fried....deep fried nutter butter anyone?), a lotta lights, a lotta noise, and a lotta livestock. While we're not annual attenders, we have been known to partake in our fair share of fried delights and take a few strolls through the sheep pins. This year we decided to tag along with our friends the Broyles and the Browns to attend Kids' Day. It was a lot of fun. Little bug had a great time...well as good a time as any two monther could. He enjoyed most of the fair from the comfortable views of his car seat. While he didn't say much, you could tell he was soaking in all the cultural delights of the fair as the kid barely blinked all day. Sleep finally overtook him as we made our way through the nosiest part of the fair--the rides. As roller coasters whizzed overhead and children screamed from all directions, little bug fell into a peaceful little slumber. go figure.

Anyway, our big day at the Mid-State Fair resulted in the funnest family photo ever...and let's be honest, this ain't no Sears family portrait..these are Mid-State Fair faces for sure.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Apparently, My Son is Not Advanced

On Monday Hayvn turns 2 months old, so this past week we had our 2 month appointment with good ol' Dr Bravo. We love Dr Bravo. All in all the appointment went really well. Our little bug is up to 9lbs, 4 oz (that's almost 4 pounds in 8 weeks!). Dr. Bravo thinks he's doing perfect, but even more important, Dr. Bravo thinks he's the cutest little guy ever (at least this is what he says and I believe him). We got some shots, which, while they were hard for bug were also pretty hard on mamma. Probably not good for us both to cry, but I didn't want the little one to cry alone.

Anyway, once again another doctor appointment finds us being scored. Only 2 months old and Hayvn's already being judged against his peers. Well, little bug, while gaining perfect weight (over an ounce a day!), was told that he falls in the 10th percentile for weight. This bascially means that 90% of other 2 monthers are bigger than him. humph. he also falls in the 5th percentile for the size of his head and 25th percentile for his height. These are not impressvie numbers apparently.

Lucky for me, my son was born a preemie. Normally, being the woman that I am, I would be worried over figures such as these. I would be wondering what I'm doing wrong that's making my son so small. But, since having him early in a "need to get him out now" kind of experience, I've really had to let go of expectations. He's a unique one, my son. And he does stuff on his own terms. As I said before, my son is not advanced. BUT he is healthy, happy and, to quote Dr Bravo, the cutest thing ever. As he starts to smile more and more, i fall more in love with my little perfect man. He's teaching me to put down the baby book with all its 'milestone' garbage and let my Hayvn be Hayvn--sans the pressure to be some amazing baby who does everything early. He'll let me know when he's ready to giggle, hold his head up and sleep longer than 2 hours at a time. And I'm alright with this.

oh, but if one more stranger tells me how tiny my baby is, I'm going to punch them in the throat.

Our son falling in the love with the outdoors

Saturday, July 12, 2008

I heart Chef Jeremy

My uber talented husband never really takes the time to boast about himself, which, i know, is a good thing. but sometimes I like to boast for him, cause I think he's really talented--certainly more so than he gets credit for. and I think he's talented in a way that most people don't truly understand. he can do things with fondant, royal icing, butter cream and gum paste that really amazes me. and these are not artistic mediums that most people are familiar with...certainly not anyone else i know. and while it's certainly easy to see and admire beauty in many artistic forms, i, sadly, don't think that people truly understand the work that goes into creating art out of food. basically, I don't think that my husband gets enough credit for creating the things that he creates. so, I'm gonna take the opportunity, while he's hard at work at the bakery creating yet another girl's dream-come-true wedding cake, to brag about him a little and show off some of his creations that I find really, really cool. after all, I fell in love with him not even knowing that this little gem of a talent even existed! I thought he was just a sweet boy with a great ear for music who could do a mean impersonation of Chris Farley. who knew he'd come with all that AND a pretty sweet piping hand?

This spider/skull he drew out of chocolate! can you draw with chocolate???

This is a princess pillow cake...doesn't it look real?

These are my favorite. They are individual cakes made to look like baby building blocks. aren't they the cutest?

again, the man can do cool stuff with chocolate!

This cake is just cool. it's a to-go coffee cup with fondant sugar cubes. amazing.

There are a lot more cakes that I could pull out--these aren't even the ones my husband would call his best--but I wanted to pull out a few unique ones that I feel demonstrate how awesome I think he is...but I may be biased...

Saturday, July 5, 2008

father of invention

so, do you think there's a market out there for wine bottle cork pacifiers? if so, we may have to take out a patent on the idea... have to give credit to little bug, though. if he didn't have such a hard time keeping the ol' paci in jeremy never would have come up with the idea of giving him a better handle via the cork!

Sunday, June 29, 2008

1 month and counting...

Hayvn celebrated his 1 month birthday not sleeping. he woke up around 7:30am to eat and decided he would remain up for most of the day. kind of a funny way for a newborn to act if you ask me, but what do i know? I'm new here too. as all new parents will tell you, the last month has been full of ups, downs and some sideway days. we sleep, we cry, we poop through diapers, we pee on momma, we get gassy, we get fussy. it's pretty much a full time job, this being a baby business. and i think hayvn would agree that keeping his parents guessing is only one of  its many perks. there's not much to this blog, other than to share some of our favorite pictures of our little bug. we've got a lot of firsts to document, so we better get to it--his first bath, first walk, first time with great-grandparents, first 100+ degree weather get the idea. pretty much every day is a first for us here in the davenport household. and as we start into month two of life on earth, we're hoping that sleep and smiles become more prevalent..for us and for hayvn. oh, and as of 1 month, hayvn is a heafty 7lbs, 7oz--yay for momma's milk making a boy nice and strong!


Monday, June 16, 2008

sweet sound of a swallow

There are many times in life when you realize that things 
are occurring in a way you never thought they would. about the 2nd day of hayvn's life i realized that everything surrounding him had occurred in ways i never thought they would. we struggled to conceive him, we thought we would lose him, and then we had him 4 weeks before we thought we would. being his parent has been an exercise in letting go, that's for sure...letting go of all expectations and assumptions. 

by day 2 of hayvn's NICU stay, we were growing more weary of the road ahead. while he was already off the oxygen, he still had an IV in his little hand and the doctors weren't ready to let him try eating yet. we were told that a small dimple right above him bum could indicate a problem with his spine and we were waiting to get the results back from an ultrasound. since we were still residents at sierra vista, visiting him was still easy and we were able to hold him most of the day. i had been shown how to pump and was already getting a little supply ready for hayvn. it was all so surreal, but yet when you're in it, you find that yourself just dealing with it--like it was normal. like you didn't just give life only to have it separated from you. 

by day 3, the weariness was starting to set in. jeremy and i were told that we would be leaving the hospital that day, and the reality that hayvn wouldn't be leaving with us was almost more than this new momma could take. i woke up early that day and called my mom in tears. the thought of not being within walking distance of my baby was heartbreaking. and poor jeremy was already having to deal with trying to balance his new role as daddy with his baker role. since hayvn arrived early, jeremy had special order cakes that were due that weekend--including one wedding cake. on the bright side, day 3 also included our first go at breastfeeding. while it was wasn't a huge success, it did afford hayvn and i the opportunity to spend some quality time just being with one another. it was precious. we also received news that his little 'butt dimple' was nothing to be concerned about--just a little dimple. 

day 4 found us in new roles, yet again. this one entailed us having to shuffle back and forth between home and the hospital. jeremy had to spend the majority of the day completing cakes, and i was fortunate enough to have jeremy's family's help. gramma and auntie jenny helped to shuffle me around and got to spend some quality time with the little one. again, breastfeeding didn't actually end in eating, but we were a determined little team, hayvn and i, and i was assured by the nurses that he'd eventually get it. luckily, i had a nice little supply building. the doctor had inserted a feeding tube in hayvn's nose in order to get him breast milk 
while he learned how to nurse or take a bottle. 

by now we'd learned that the NICU was a place where you had to be prepared for the unexpected--and you had to put on a brave face, no matter what. our little hayvn was/is quite the little wiggle worm. while the doctors had him eating mostly through a feeding tube, he was still receiving some nutrients through his IV. well, the little guy kept losing his IV. the nurses had tried it in his hand and his foot already. since he was such a mover, the nurse finally resorted to inserting the IV in his head. let me tell you, coming into the NICU to see my tiny little baby with an IV in his scalp was nothing short of the hardest thing i've ever seen. luckily, the nurses assured me that he was not in any pain and the IV would soon be coming out (as he began to eat more and more on his own). by this point God and I were in regular communication and i told Him in no uncertain terms that He'd better get that IV out soon...or heads would roll. 

by day 5  little hayvn had mastered the bottle. in fact, he was taking down almost half an ounce like a starving little man. it was amazing to feed him for the first time and to hear the sweet sweet sound of him swallowing. we knew that his stay in the NICU depended on his ability to take food by mouth, so it was no small victory to hear him suck, swallow and breathe all at once.

unfortunately, on day 5 we celebrated this victory and also experienced some defeat. on day 4, jeremy and i noticed that hayvn's coloring was getting more and more yellow. on the morning of day 5, the doctor had noticed this as well. by early afternoon they had gotten the test results back on his bilirubin and determined that his liver wasn't functioning as well as it should. in order to help him process his food better, hayvn was put under the photo therapy lights. again, i experienced some heartbreak when visiting my little boy in the hospital that night. i was able to feed  him and change his diaper, but i had to do it with him under the lights in the photo therapy incubator. and he had to wear this awful little eye mask, so he couldn't see me when i talked to him. luckily, my mother-n-law was with me for the visit, so she helped me put on that motherly brave face. 

day 6 was a better day. his bilirubin had already started to come down significantly, so we were able to try breastfeeding again (which he was doing better at) and we were able to hold him in 20 minute intervals every 3 hours. since hayvn had been doing better breastfeeding and taking a bottle, the feeding tube was out and the nurses started talking to us about discharge. we were also told that he'd have the IV (moved back to his left hand) out by the end of the day.  while we were encouraged that he'd get to come home the following day if his bilirubin was back in the normal range, we didn't want to get our hopes up. once again, a text was sent out 
to all of our praying family and friends that hayvn would be discharged soon.

day 7 was a miraculous day. we went in for his 8:30 feeding to find him moved to another part of the NICU--the part for reserved for babies going home! his bilirubin had gone down again, and he was no longer under the photo therapy lights. i tried breastfeeding him again and then gave him his bottle as the nurses went through all the discharge information. jeremy brought up our carseat in order for hayvn to undergo the final test before coming home--the carseat test. he was to sit in the carseat for an hour and if his heartrate stayed within normal range he proved that he was strong enough to come home. jeremy and i left the little guy in his carseat and headed home to get things ready. we had several more items to buy and some cleaning to, we knew that gramma would want to be there for his homecoming. 

we arrived back at the NICU for the final time at
 1:30 that afternoon. after scrubbing up, we went in to find little hayvn comfortably sleeping in his carseat, all his items packed up and all his paperwork complete. our little boy was all set to come home. he was finally ours--no more sharing him with nurses and doctors. after strapping him into the car and starting for home, jeremy put
 on tom petty's "wildflowers", one of hayvn's favorite songs when he was in the womb....and then hayvn's big strong daddy cried the entire car ride home.