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Friday, August 24, 2012

Growing boy...

Palmer was 9 months old on August 18th...still can't believe he's so big!

Birth weight: 7lb. 12oz.
Today: 17lb. 1oz.
Birth length: 20 in.
Today: 28 in.

  • Reading...mommy reads to me every day. I like to help turn the pages and sometimes I "read" on my own! You can see how much I love books in two of the pictures above.
  • I still love to talk but now mommy & daddy say it sounds more like a baby pterodactyl screeching. I do talk sweetly but usually only in the mornings.
  • Power cords! Seriously, I just can't help myself. They're so fun to pull on and wave around in the air.
  • My's been so fun to have them back in Texas! I like to snuggle with Caroline and laugh with Lincoln. I'm still a little unsure about Roman especially since he tried to ride me like a horsey! 
  • Food...I eat A LOT and I enjoy it! So far, I've had oatmeal, brown rice cereal, sweet potatoes, carrots, peas, green beans, avocado, apples, peaches, pears, bananas, and mashed potatoes. My favorites are sweet potatoes, peas, pears and bananas.
  • Bath time...I love to splash, splash, splash!
  • MY PACI!!  If I knew how I would write a love sonnet about my paci. I can stare at it for hours and it never loses its wonder. Whenever I need a little soothing it's right there to comfort me.
  • Sleep...still don't like it. Just when momma thinks she's got  my naps figured out, I throw her for a loop and change things up a little. In fact, right now I should be sleeping but instead I'm writing this post.
  • Teething! My first four teeth weren't so bad but right now I'm getting four all at once and they're proving to be a little more painful!My gums are so swollen and red...I have to be chewing on something to make me happy.
New Skills:
  •'s not quite a crawl but it gets me where I want to go. I get up on my hands and knees and rock, rock, rock then I dive forward. Sometimes I use my hands to pull me forward too. I move pretty quickly and momma has to keep her eyes on me all the time now.
  • Sitting up...but only when I want to.
  • Eating takes me awhile but I can get them from my hand into my mouth. It takes a lot of concentration though.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

We interrupt our regularly scheduled programming...

Oh, wait...we haven't had any regularly scheduled anything! Yes, I know it has been forever since I've posted. Let's just say our lives have been hectic. At the beginning of June, Palmer and I flew to NJ to meet the newest member of our family...Alyson Lynne Tillman! He was ubber excited to meet her but I think she was less than impressed :-).

Palmer also got to meet his Aunt Pishy (my sister, Tricia) and Uncle Daniel...

He had fun playing with Poppa...

Unfortunately, all that traveling did not agree with Palmer. Not long after returning home, Palmer developed his first ear infection...a double one! It started with a really bad runny nose which I chocked up to teething but then Thursday night he was just miserable. He woke up numerous times screaming and was morning he had spiked a fever of 102! It was so hard to see him not feeling well...

It was especially hard because we were scheduled to be flying to Virgina for a Carlson family vacation on Saturday morning! Thankfully, I was able to have someone cover me at work and get Palmer into his pediatrician early Friday morning. We got our antibiotics and kept him loaded with baby Tylenol! Despite all of that, he had a remarkably uneventful plane trip.
I was a bad photographer on this particular trip but I will leave you with a few gems...

Chill-axin' in the pool with daddy!

Checking out my cousin Ian.

"Dude! What's this guy's problem?"

"Haha! I'm gonna get his ear!"

"Alright...I'm done. Get me outta here."

All the grandchildren with Gamma Jan & Pappa Paul.

Dan & I

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Palmer's birth story, Part 1

I know I have shared the story of mine and Dan's journey through infertility multiple times. However, I can't help but share it again as each day I look at my son and remember afresh what a miracle he is!
Two years ago, Dan and I decided that it was the right time for us to start a family. We began trying for that in March of 2009. I naively thought that because I had good “genes” for child bearing that it would happen quickly. As the months passed, my faith was beginning to be tested in ways that I couldn’t possibly imagine and I grew increasingly anxious. I talked to my doctor on numerous occasions asking him if something was wrong and when could we run tests to find out if there was a problem. He assured me that it takes the average couple 6 months to 1 year to conceive. When there was still no baby after a full year, he finally ordered some tests to be done to determine if there were any problems. It was quickly found that there were some serious problems. We were told by three different doctors that our chances of having a child “naturally” without medical intervention were less than 2%. We were told that the only way for us to get pregnant was through invitro-fertilization (IVF). We were so unprepared for this news.

I would love to say that my faith and trust in God grew stronger through this but instead it sent me into a tailspin of despair. Feelings of betrayal, guilt, and fear became my constant companions. I continually raged against God with questions of why are You letting this happen and how can You be a loving, kind God if You are causing this to happen. I struggled with trusting that God was in control of this situation, that He had a perfect plan in place, and that He truly desired to give me good things!

The months passed and I slipped further and further into depression. Dan tried, to the best of his ability, to help me through this but I pushed him and everyone else away. How could anyone understand how I was feeling? I felt alone and scared for the future. At times, I truly thought that our marriage wouldn’t make it through this trial. We were on such different pages of what should be done and when. It’s weeks of expensive testing, medications, and procedures and in the end we could still end up with no baby. Eventually, we approached members of our church family with the situation, hoping that by telling others we would be encouraged and gain some helpful advice. We met with one of the pastors in our church and his wife for counseling to help us through the issues this was bringing into our marriage. I started meeting with another woman in our church for some one on one counseling. We also shared this with several of our immediate family members. Thanks to their godly counsel, and many of your prayers and support, we were finally able to make progress.

In early February, we went on a much needed vacation. During this time we had an opportunity to focus on our marriage and the future. While we were there, having prayed and asked God for wisdom, we decided together to wait 3 more months before pursuing IVF treatments. During those three months, we committed to daily read Scripture together, pray and ask God to work a miracle, and do our best to trust Him. We knew this would not be easy but Dan felt it was the right process to take before doing IVF and I was willing to follow his lead in this decision (even though I was more than ready to do IVF). We committed to praying God's Word and promises back to Him. We would regularly pray "Now unto Him that is able to do exceedingly above what we ask or think" (Ephesians 3:20-21) and “Rejoice in the Lord always…be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:4, 5-7). Over the next month we took time everyday to do this. Just over a month later, at the end of March, we found out that God truly had worked a miracle! We were pregnant (and it was natural)!! What a shock when we found out. God was merciful to us and provided a child...He truly did exceedingly above what we thought possible!

While we did not understand what God was doing, He had a plan for our lives. When we first started trying, we were planning for a late October/early November due date so that I would be off for the holidays. We also really wanted a boy first. Through two years of trying, tears, and prayers, the Lord gave us both the things we had originally “planned” on. The Lord promises in Psalm 84:11 that “no good thing will He withhold from those who walk uprightly.” Also, in Jeremiah 31, He promises to “turn their mourning into joy;…comfort them, and give them gladness for sorrow.” Oh, how He loves us and fulfills His promises to us! Our sweet little boy joined our family thanks to the unfailing love of the Lord!!

During the holiday season while we celebrated the miraculous birth of our son, we couldn't help but reflect on the true reason for Christmas. The miraculous birth of Jesus Christ, who came to earth to die on the cross to pay for our sins, is the ultimate display of God’s love to us. We are thankful that God loved us so much He sent His Son to give us eternal life.

Stay tuned for more on how I found out that we were pregnant...

Monday, April 30, 2012

Livin' it up in Florida for spring break...

Palmer and I took a little trip, sans Dan, to Florida the week after Easter. It was Palmer's 7th plane trip in his short little life! He's quite the traveler with two trips to Chicago and a jaunt to Puerto Rico under his belt. He's usually stellar on plane trips - no screaming fits...yet! However, I was still a little apprehensive about making the trip on my own. Plus, we flew Spirit airlines and I'd heard some scary tales of lost baggage, long delays and very little space. It didn't start out too great...Dan took us to the airport and helped us in with our luggage. Let's just say that some of the rumors are true. Spirit airlines customer service is extremely slow! They only had two lines open and took their sweet time helping people. Then the security line was all our times flying out of DFW we've never waited more than 10 minutes in line for security. Thankfully, we made it to our gate just as they were boarding!
Palmer had a great trip...he just "loved" the guy sitting next to us! If Palmer was awake, he was staring at him smiling and talking. Luckily, the guy was very nice and made funny faces to make Palmer smile bigger. Unfortunately, I didn't get any good pictures of us on the's hard to get a picture when you can't see what you're taking!
We had such a good time with my grandparents and parents!! Palmer got lots of loving and cuddling which he loves. He did make mommy a bit of a liar because I raved about what a good sleeper he was and he decided it was a good time to NOT sleep in and NOT take naps. Palmer usually sleeps until 9:30am or 10am but on this trip, he was literally up with the sun no later than 8am! He was all 'you can't make me sleep in even with blankets over the windows and your phone on the lightning bug app!' If we were out and about during a nap, he did everything in his power to keep himself awake. We took a drive to the Gulf Coast one day during his nap because I assured everyone that he would sleep in the car. Not so, the little stink butt stayed awake the entire 2 hour drive!! Fortunately, he didn't scream the whole way either. I figured out that if I showed him a picture of his daddy when he started crying, the tears would stop and he'd start talking to the picture...that boy sure do love him his daddy! Regardless of all the sleeplessness, he was his usual sweet self. He had all his grandparents charmed in minutes with his big toothless grins and sweet talkin'.

Poppa and Palmer on a Sea Sponge Fishing Tour

Grammy and Palmer showing off his newest trick!

Getting some lovin' from my grandma's...

Snuggle time with Poppa!

Listening to Grampa Jack tell stories!

Palmer and Great Gramma in our coordinating outfits!

Palmer was "done" with pictures by this point...

Friday, April 20, 2012

5 months

Palmer turned 5 months on Wednesday! I can hardly believe he's already that seems like just yesterday I was curled up on the couch crying because we couldn't get pregnant. God truly is faithful and is "able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think" (Ephesians 3:20)!
Birth weight: 7lb. 12oz.
               Today: 14lb. 2oz. (on the Wii fit)    
Birth length: 20 in.
Today: 25.5 in.

* My playmat...I can spend "hours" lying there talking to myself in the mirror and trying to eat the animals.
* day I decided that it was time to share with my mommy and daddy all that was on my mind. So now I talk, talk, talk all day long! Sometimes I wake up from night-night or naps just talking away. Mommy thinks it's the sweetest sound she's ever heard!
* My fingers...I really like sucking on my pointer fingers. They just tastes so stinkin' good that I can't help myself! Who wants a plastic paci when they can have a sweet finger?! Mommy and daddy are always taking my fingers out of my mouth and putting the paci in...but I've shown them! Now, I have my paci in and shove my fingers in the side. It's the best of both worlds!
* My mobile over my changing table...who says getting your diaper changed can't be entertaining! I let my mommy or daddy do the dirty work and I smile away at the swirling circles!
* My lovey, aka my birp cloths...I like to grab onto them when I'm sleepy or happy or hungry...ok, whenever they're near me. Daddy thinks I need something more "manly" so if anyone has any suggestions let my mommy know.
* My DADDY!! I get uber excited when he comes home from work. I can't wait to tell him all about my day and hear about his. My favorite is on Saturdays when I get him all to myself!

* Going to sleep...I don't want to miss anything so I try really hard to keep my wittle eyes open! Mommy says that's the Carlson in me and she's probably right. I have to get ready for family vacation and staying up late with my cousins!
* Tummy time...'cause to me it's a little too similar to night-night! I'm trying to be better because daddy says that's the only way I'll learn to crawl!
*Sunlight in my eyes...I hate it! It makes me sneeze and I have to crinkle up my nose and close my eyes! I wish they made sunglasses small enough for my tiny little face.

* Holding my head up so high during tummy time.
* Sitting/standing up like a big boy!
* Rolling from my tummy to my back. I'm almost rolling from my back to my tummy but I always get stuck on my side and then gravity gets the best of me!
* Laughing. It's kind of a deep belly chuckle and is very hard to get out of me. My Auntie Laura Beth is the best at it...probably 'cause she's so funny!

Thursday, April 19, 2012


Welcome to my hopefully entertaining updates on our "hum-drum" lives! I spend entirely too much time looking at other blogs and thinking, "I should start my own blog." So, here it is. Just a warning: I'm not a writer (in fact English was my worst subject) and I don't promise that anyone but family will find this interesting reading. But, if you enjoy looking at pictures of my sweet punkin then follow along as I learn how to be a mom!