Tuesday, January 24, 2012

my lovie.

(ok totally posted this 55 minutes early)
Today is Mason Alexander Paulo's 7th birthday.
like in 3 more birthdays he will be 10. like in 2 more 7's he will be 21. ok i just need to stop.
these past 7 years have been the best 7 years of my life.
all of my children are such blessings, each one of their birthdays are exciting. there is something a little tad different about the first one and not that he means more to me or that i love him more because that is untrue. but when you start to reminisce about that first born, it hits you a little deeper in your heart.
he made me a mom.
i remember not being able to sleep the night before my cesarean because i was so nervous. i was nervous about the surgery, nervous that i wouldn't know how to be a mom, that i wouldn't feel that connection, that i wasn't going to do a good job. we got to the hospital at 6am, i remember stressing on what to wear and i ended up just wearing a long sleeved white shirt with gray yoga pants. i was scheduled at 8am. however, due to some emergencies i didn't go back to surgery till 12:30. the room was cold, sterile and my hands kept on shaking because i was so nervous.
dr. enloe said ok here he comes and i remember there being what seemed like an eternity before i heard him cry, and when i heard his cry, i began crying. shoot im crying right now just typing it out. they dropped the blue barrier and there he was, HUGE and with a scrunched up face and he still had yucky white stuff and blood on him. his dad had the camera to take pictures but he just stood there in shock staring at him like whoa this is my child, this is all real. Mason Alexander Paulo was born at 12:54pm January 25th 2005 weighing 9 pounds 15 ounces and 23 3/4 inches long.
the nurse brought him to me and I kissed him and he was taken out of the room into recovery. i had to sit in a separate room for over an hour before i could be reunited with him. cesareans really suck sometimes, but none the less he was born and it was still a very amazing experience. i love the early memories with him, our routines we had in the morning, letting him sleep on my chest at night because i was too scared to put him down, learning to nurse him and feeling amazed at how a mother body is and how it worked to provide for my child. i remember the first time he smiled at me, the first time he rolled over, ate rice cereal,  sat up all by himself, the first time he clung to my neck when i held him. I have these wonderful memories that will always be special to me because they were all firsts for me.

Mason grounded me. he helped me change from being a self centered teenager to a woman who had a purpose. it's just so unreal that it has been 7 years. it was just me and him for awhile, figuring life out. it's surreal to think of how far we have come since then. he is now a big brother to 3 siblings, a first grader who is so brilliant. Mason has this innocence about his personality. he just wants to be everyone's friend. he is such a little boy at heart. he loves being outside, he is full of energy and exuberant about life. he will tell you that his favorite color is blue or red but really it is pink and then he will argue with you that pink is a guy color and that it is totally fine that he loves it.  he loves comic books and gets mad at me when i take a black sharpie pen and color in a modest tube top over cat womans cleavage. he loves to read, he is really into chapter books now and is in the accelerated reading program at school. he loves to ride his scooter, play catch with Joe and look for bugs in the back yard. he is only 7 years old and already has his own personal relationship with Jesus and I love seeing it grow. i have always called mason my lovie. he was such a cuddly baby always wanting to be held, he could only sleep if i would lay down with him. when he got to be a toddler, he would stand there and said "i hold you i hold you" asking me to pick him up. we co-slept till i was pregnant with london. he still will come lay on my lap. each of my kids have a nickname that is exclusive to them, and mason's is lovie which is completely suiting to him.  i made up a song to sing to Mason when he was about 2 years old. it's called the Mason Paulo song....... so original, i know. he has now made variations for it for each of his siblings, but even rowan says hey lets sing the mason paulo song and then puts his own name into it. anytime he is in a bad mood or upset ill start singing the song and it almost always puts a smile on his face. mason is a big kid, who am i kidding? he is a giant and looks more like an 11 year old than a 7 year old. he eats like a horse and even loves vegetables like asparagus and brussels sprouts. however he doesn't like anything "spicy" and mild salsa is spicy to this kid. he loves to tell jokes, which most of the time aren't very funny but we still encourage him to try....he really wants to be a funny kid :) I love him, every little thing. he is one of the best things to ever happen to me and I love more than I will ever be able to describe on this blog.
Happy Birthday Mason.

Thursday, January 19, 2012


yesterday i had a tough day.
i started my you know what, so i felt miserable, achy & incredibly grumpy.
i didn't want to get out of bed, i felt like i had taken a bullet to the uterus and i wanted to die.
my kids watched a lot of movies and played in their play room while i wallowed around the house in my pajamas with leftover mascara under my eyes and whined about how awful it is to be a woman (in my mind because i didn't want to explain what was going on to my 4 year old, too soon...way too soon for that conversation)
the kids were bickering, i was letting it go on way to long without stepping in and being the peacemaker. i was being lazy and yelling from my room "knock it off you two!!" "work it out!!" "quit yelling at your brother London!" as I was yelling at her...go figure. i fed them lunch, put them down for an early nap because i still had to pick up mason from school, take him to basketball practice, make dinner, go to church. my house was covered in unfolded laundry, toys & more laundry.
i was so snappy all day. it was awful.
then i just kind of broke down in my bed and cried a little (50% caused from hormones, 50% my realization of how bad i was sucking that day)
i prayed for God to help me. for Him to give me energy, for me to be a patient mom no matter what is going on with my body....and to quit being such a whiner about something i have dealt with since i was 9.
the day went on, we went to church. seriously the only thing i was honestly looking forward too. i sat in the nursery with betsey and a friend and all of the little kiddos. i began to tell her how i had had a hard day with my kids and she told me has struggled with those days as well and she said it was something she realized she wasn't praying enough about. and that really hit home with me. well i had prayed earlier that day at my breaking point, but in reality patience is something that every single mother struggles with and usually on a daily basis. i should be praying regularly for guidance and help on this topic. prayer life while having 4 young children takes some organization of your time, but if you watch reality tv, facebook, text and post on instagram every hour.......you can have time for prayer and getting your devotion in. God tells us in bible that he will give us the desires of our heart, and in my heart i really do desire to be a patient soft spoken mother. sometimes we focus on the complaining in person of how things are, blaming our children for our aggrevation because they were bickering all day, or wouldn't listen to you. even though those things are going on in my house, i still have control of how i react to them. i rarely sit down and have that conversation with Him, letting him know how we are struggling and thanking him for my circumstances that allow me to see how i need to grow and change as a mother. asking for help with my lack of patience and self control with raising my voice and being lazy with my discipline, even if i am not feeling my best.  some people say, dont pray for patience so God will send you a hard situation to learn it through. i think that's lame.
"Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus" (Philippians 4:6-7)

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

3 years ago today

Rowan turned 3 years old today.
I still remember the day I found out I was pregnant with him. Feels like yesterday.
London was only 5 months old, Mason was 3. I cried in the exam room when I met with my midwife. She told me to get it together and left the room and when she came back and I had stopped bawling like a baby she said "You'll never be able to imagine your life without this baby so lets move forward and be happy". Babies are blessings, getting pregnant is a joyous thing. But at the time, I felt overwhelmed with my two little ones. We said we were "done" we had one boy and one girl. Joe was really slow with work it was at the peak of the downfall with the economy in construction and money was really tight.  I was stressed about us not being able to make it work. We were living in a tiny little 800 sq ft house and it was crowded with the 4 of us. It was just bad timing to have a baby. It's funny how we have our own time table of how life is supposed to happen. God's plan was different than mine. When I left the office, I felt better than when I had arrived. When I came home and told Joe. He threw up. I giggled. I thought it was funny, shoot I still think it's a little funny when he throws up over silly things like the kids boogers ending up on his face and stuff like that. Sorry babe.
But we soon became super stoked on baby #3. Even more stoked to find out that #3 was a boy!!! I attempted a vbac with Rowan. Attempted is loosely stated. My ob/gyn would not allow me to go past my due date with him. So on my due date, a Friday, I drank a bottle of castor oil. Nothing happened. So I drank another bottle, got violently ill but contractions started. However they were false contractions and I ended up with being dehydrated and a cesarean. During my cesarean, Dr. B said "who has red hair in the family" and I said well my moms is kind of a reddish brown. Next I heard a baby cry and she lifted him up and he had a full head of bright orange red hair!!! I had a blonde, brunette & a red head. He had some difficulty breathing. You see, I was still exclusively nursing London when I got pregnant with Rowan. I hadn't a cycle yet. One day London literally refused to nurse. So I had to buy formula. I ended up feeling super nauseous a few days later and I took a home pregnancy test and it lit up like a Christmas tree. The nurse told me that being pregnant changes breast milk and that's why London wouldn't nurse. So long story short, I didn't have a cycle to go by for a due date. They did an ultrasound and it put me at January 17th. But in reality Rowan was more due around the first week of February. He was completely covered in vernix and was blue. It was scary. I didn't hold him till he was 10 hours old. I cried so much the first time he was in my arms. I pestered the NICU nurses every 30 minutes with my phone calls to see if he was OK. I didn't know how we were going to make it financially, or how I was going to find space in our tiny home for him, or how I was going to handle having 2 infants and a toddler.....but you know what? we did just fine. And I honestly miss that little house and so does Mason because we were always together. One thing about not having a lot of money is that you spend a lot of time home together as a family. Deb was right, I can't imagine my life without Rowan. He makes me smile every single day, and laugh a lot too...especially when he dances to the last scene in Despicable Me. He loves Star Wars, matchbox cars and duplo blocks. He loves to be outside playing in the dirt and eats like a horse and is as skinny as can be. He loves his yellow blankie and never leaves home without it. He is the Contente family Linus. His favorite color is blue. He is very shy but insanely bold when it comes to things like just taking cookies off of the counter when he feels like it. He lives in his rain boots. At every meal he thanks God for "my mommy & my friends" even though he is a total daddy's boy, that kid is thankful for his Mom <3  I love him with every fiber of my being. He was a wonderful surprise and I am glad that I believe in a God who knows whats best for me. He knew that we needed a little guy like Rowan at that exact time in our lives. "Before I formed you in your mother's womb, I knew you..." Jeremiah 1:5. I am so very thankful for Rowan. He makes me happy and brings so much good stuff to our family.
Here are some photos from pregnancy till now:

 I love you Rowan, happy birthday son.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012


2011 was a good year for my family.

I began attending Calvary Chapel with my children full time in January, my boys celebrated their birthdays the 17th and 25th. My husband the 31st. Joe began coming to church with us in March. We celebrated 5 years of being together on May 18th. Our fourth baby, Betsey Jane, was born in May 23rd. Joe became a Christian in June.  London accepted Christ at VBS in July. Mason also accepted Christ into his heart a few days later via London sharing her sweet little testimony with her big brother in the back seat of the car. London turned 4 in September. I weaned Betsey from nursing in October. We went to Disneyland. I celebrated my 26th birthday in November. We had a wonderful Christmas and celebrated our 4th wedding anniversary on the 29th of December. 
I don't know what can get better than celebrating the birth of another child, seeing the work of God in your lives as your spouse and 2 oldest children get saved, having a marriage that gets to celebrate another anniversary and watching your children grow older. oh and Disneyland.
We have been truly undeniably blessed, I can't imagine how 2012 can top that.