Sunday, March 28, 2010

HAPPY 4TH BIRTHDAY!!!!

It is here, BIRTHDAY celebration day for my three, wonderful FOUR YEAR OLDS!

Today we plan to go to church, home, lunch, then their PARTY! They are so very excited because they will have BOTH sets of grandparents here!!!

Here are some of the pictures I took of them the other day. I'm working at trying to take better photos and capture moments. I'm working on it!

Enjoy my boys with me :)




Our Easton

Our Dalton

Our Quinton

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Quinton loves his nap...

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This is where I found Quinton just a little while ago. It's not nap time yet, he just loves his naps!

Easton's Turn! 30 Questions....

Easton has been asking when it is his turn, and I’m pleased to tell him TODAY! He doesn’t fully understand why I am doing this, but he just wants it to be his turn. He doesn’t want to be left out. Everything must be even, fair and equal. He gets that from me. Poor kid! It must all be fair!


He is very kind hearted, gentle, organized kid. He says the sweetest things, and worries about you when you are upset. He tries to say and do things that will make you feel better and smile. Easton is an organized child. He likes things to be in a straight line, matched up, and even. He is not a “neat” child, but organized. Toys mess, food mess, things being out of place does not bother him. When he is working on a project or playing with a toy, he wants it to be completed. It has taught us to be a little more patient with him. Things must be “finished” in his mind to continue on. I recall a time when he was only 18 months old and we were heading to nap. I saw it in his head that he was going to disobey to turn around, pick up a ring toy, and place it correctly to “finish” the stack before rushing into his bedroom and comply with his instructions to go to bed. Watching him, Dan and I shake our heads. He is a little Dan, through and through and through!


Easton was born at 3 pounds, 12 ounces. He has loved his food from the beginning. There was a time in the NICU that he had to go NPO (without food by mouth) and he had the saddest, little pout about him, it was pitiful! I still get that lip from him today, but now I can verbally explain that he doesn’t NEED an extra brownie, toast or roll :)


Enjoy our Easton. He truly was honored to sit down and thought through each of his answers!


What is your name? Easton Carl Slater

What name does Daddy call you? Buddy and Squirt

What name does Mommy call you? Easton

What is your favorite color? BLUE

What is your favorite TV show? Diego

What is your favorite movie? I like Jafar (Aladdin - this cracks me up because he has only seen it 1 time)

What is your favorite snack? corn puffs

What is your favorite drink? juice

What is your favorite food? cereal
What is your favorite thing to do outside?
play with balls

What is your favorite to do with Mommy? color

What is your favorite to do with Daddy? mow the lawn and wrestle

What do you think about Jesus? (looks up, deep in thought) Heaven

What do you like about your church class? play with everybody

What is Daddy’s favorite thing? eat chips
What is Mommy’s favorite thing?
give hugs

Are you excited for something? MY BIRTHDAY!

What do you like to do with Dalton? play games

What do you like to do with Quinton? play Trios
What is your favorite toy?
my Trios

What is your favorite game? Memory

What is your favorite? all my shoes

What is your favorite clothes to wear? my short sleeve shirts

What is your favorite pjs? my aligator pj’s

What is your favorite place to go visit? Grammy and Papa

When you grow up, what do you want to be? an Army guy

When you grow up, what kind of car do you want to drive?a blue and red truck

How old do you have to be to drive a car? 8

How old is an adult? 4

Anything else I should know about you? I like all my special stuff





Monday, March 22, 2010

Dalton's 30 Questions...


Dalton kept asking me why I was asking him questions. He just wanted to wrap his head around the purpose. “To share on my blog” means NOTHING to him. He did sit down with me, but was ready to go back to playing when we were done.


Dalton was born the biggest of my three boys. 4 pounds, 1 ounce. Dan had it in his head that “Dalton” was a “big” name and so it was determined that our biggest born would be named that way. Since he was a preemie, he has been a very cuddly boy. I have always called him my squishy since he just can meld into you with hugs. He is a very agile and coordinated little boy. However, you pair that with a very cautious manner and he is thankfully not swinging from the fan! :) He is naturally coordinated, from a VERY young age and picks up physical tasks quickly. Many times he is in tune with what is going on and acts like the “older” brother helping his brothers do things. He has been able to dress himself since he was 2, put his own shoes on, coat on, and zip his coat. He will “help” zip his brothers coats and “help” them buckle in their car seats.


As much as he is a help, the other part of the time his mind works very mischievously. “How can I make my brothers squeal” is at the forefront of his brain. He is a true brother!


What is your name? Dalton Thomas

What name does Daddy call you? Squirt

What name does Mommy call you? Dalton Thomas

What is your favorite color? Green

What is your favorite TV show? Imagination Movers

What is your favorite movie? Tarzan

What is your favorite snack? Animal Crackers

What is your favorite drink? Lemonaid

What is your favorite food? Peanut Butter toast
What is your favorite thing to do outside? play with balls and stuff

What is your favorite to do with Mommy? Give hugs

What is your favorite thing to do with Daddy? wrestle!

What do you think about Jesus? He doesn’t do bad things

What do you like to do in church class? play on the playground

What is Daddy’s favorite thing? Wrestling with me
What is Mommy’s favorite thing? Giving me hugs and kisses

Are you excited for something? My BIRTHDAY!

What do you like to do with Easton? play outside

What do you like to do with Quinton? I don’t like to play with Quinton when he is whining
What is your favorite toy? my trains

What is your favorite game? Jump over Daddy

What is your favorite shoes? tennis shoes

What is your favorite clothes to wear? my red short sleeve shirt

What is your favorite pjs? my Snowman PJs

What is your favorite place to go visit? Grandpa’s house

When you grow up, what do you want to be? A Daddy

When you grow up, what kind of car do you want to drive? a red truck like Grandpa’s

How old do you have to be to drive a car? a big kid

How old is an adult? 20

Anything else I should know about you? Can I go back and play now?




Saturday, March 20, 2010

30 Questions Quinton Style...

Quinton’s personality was apparent before he was even born. Looking back now, I can totally see it. At the time, I did not recognize it. In the womb he was the one that refused to raise his heart rate for my “20 min non-stress test”, no matter what they did to rile him up. Those tests usually turned into 2-3 hours, on my back, in labor and delivery. He was born our smallest preemie at 3 pounds 8 ounces. His NICU nurse, Gloria, told us he was an opinionated child, and he squawked at them when he didn’t like what they were doing. She said for preemies, this was not as common because they tend to be very compliant since they are technically not supposed to be out of the womb yet.

Quinton is very outgoing. Since he was a little baby he is a people watcher and connects with people’s eyes. He loves to be the center of attention, and has a very loud voice. With that voice he belts out songs all day long. To aid with that, he has a microphone he picked out with his $3 birthday gift card from Toys R Us. Thanks Geoffrey! He loves to make up songs, stories, play dress up and pretend he is a dog. He is passionate about how he feels; good and bad. He keeps his Daddy and I on our toes. We pray that we can help guide his passions toward making the right choices and following the Lord. Many days we shake our heads at him because he is unlike both Dan and I, and we don’t know where he gets it. We think it’s a combination of his outgoing Grandpa and his actress aunt. He is a crazy kid!

Here is my 30 Questions Quinton Style.... which actually turned into 31 because he would not answer the first one completely. Very Quinton!

What is your name? Quinton
What is your big name? Quinton Joseph Slater
What name does Daddy call you? Squirt
What name does Mommy call you? Quinton
What is your favorite color? Yellow (current color he was wearing, not too sure about this anwer)
What is your favorite TV show? Word World (this surprised me because he asks to watch Dora every day)
What is your favorite movie? Tarzan
What is your favorite snack? Goldfish
What is your favorite drink? Milk
What is your favorite food? Bacon
What is your favorite thing to do outside? Play with my brothers
What is your favorite to do with Mommy? Play games
What is your favorite to do with Daddy? Play wrestle on the bed
What is your favorite what do you think about Jesus? I love him and he makes my heart happy
What do you like about your church class? Miss Nancy (his teacher)
What is Daddy’s favorite thing? Playing wrestle with me
What is Mommy’s favorite thing? Playing Candy Land with me
Are you excited for something? My Birthday!
What do you like to do with Easton? Picking flowers
What do you like to do with Dalton? Hit stuff
What is your favorite toy? Dress up (they have police, fireman, army guy, pirate)
What is your favorite game? Which hand is nice (a game he plays with Daddy)
What is your favorite shoes? My sandals
What is your favorite clothes to wear? My Robot shirt
What is your favorite PJs? My dinosaur ones
What is your favorite place to go visit? I want to visit Grammy & Papa's house
When you grow up, what do you want to be? I want to stay Quinton
When you grow up, what kind of car do you want to drive? A red truck like Grandpa's
How old do you have to be to drive a car? 4
How old is an adult? 5
Anything else I should know about you? What did you say, Mommy?



Friday, March 19, 2010

Sitting Shiva...

Sitting Shiva - /definition by Rob Bell/An ancient Jewish practice that is called sitting Shiva. When you loose someone you love (or you know a family that has lost someone), you go to their house. You just sit with them. You don't say anything. If they want to talk, then you talk. If they prefer silence, you give them silence.

This is what comes to my mind when I have been thinking about the loss of little Bethany and what her family is going through. Sitting Shiva. I first saw this video in our Nooma class at First Assembly in Siloam Springs. Rob has an amazing way of bringing up how even Jesus mourned. If he had the need to mourn, we also have to. We can't push it away, we can't become bitter, we need to let it out. It has been an AMAZING video that touches me every time I watch it.

Nooma 012: Matthew - Part One & Part Two (click on the links to see the actual part one and part two video)

Here it is. The final message from some wonderful people about the last days of dear Bethany.

I'm so encouraged and amazed by their faith in our Lord! I mean, I love the Lord with all my heart, but I don't know how they were able to deal with this. They are amazing!!!

I know this is not the last we have heard from this awesome family. I know we'll be seeing their passions for people and causes come forth in weeks, months and years to come. Bethany and her legacy is not gone nor forgotten. She will be living on in the hearts of her family and friends that will work to honor the battle she has lost.

As I mentioned before, please keep their family in your hearts and prayers for a long while to come. Here is what Amy had to say about Bethany's last days. It is hard to read. (click HERE to help them with their funeral fund)

Dear Prayer Warriors and Friends,

I want to first say a HUGE thank you to all of you who have prayed for Bethany and our family. I am truly humbled and blessed knowing that so many people have joined this group. I am amazed by the amount of love and support our family has received just through facebook alone. Its just amazing that so many people have shown their support and love to our family during this extremely difficult time.

Bethany was and will continue to be my hero. Her life on this earth was extremely short, but it made such an impact. God placed her on this earth for so many reasons. She brought so much laughter and joy on a daily basis. Her character and spirit was so playful and silly. Bethany was such a trooper and that fact alone taught us to be stronger and to endure. She NEVER let the cancer in her body get her down. She knew she was sick but she never moped around seeking pity. She endured... she lived every day with zeal for life.

The last 2 weeks of Bethany's life was beyond difficult for our family. It was so hard physically seeing the cancer finally take control of Bethany's life. Through out Bethany's life, people use to say to us that they never would have guessed Bethany even had cancer. They used to say: "put a wig on her and you would think she was just fine." Well, the last 2 weeks of her life, everything changed. By the time she passed on, the cancer had spread to every single part of her body. She was in so much pain. Bethany was on constant extremely high dose pain medicine. Even on all of those meds, we could barely move her without causing her to scream out in pain. She stopped eating and walking. I have to say, even through all of this difficult time, every now and then, the true Bethany showed through. She wanted to walk and talk, but just couldn't.

Tuesday, March 9th, was her last full day of life. She basically slept and cried the whole day. We were having such a hard time seeing her this way. Around 8pm on that day, her breathing started to sound very labored and full of fluid/blood. We thought it was going to happen quickly. So, my husband and I stayed awake. However, she kept breathing and breathing. By 3 am, both my husband and I fell asleep, Mike was holding Bethany and I was sitting on the couch next to him. Then, right around 5am, Mike woke me up and said that Bethany was gone. She had waited until we were sleeping and at peace.

The morning after she passed went by so quickly. The hospice team came, some close friends came and our pastor came. We spent some beautiful time with Bethany's body and eventually the funeral directors came and got her body. The sweetest thing was what Mike said that day. When God gave us Bethany, Mike was the first person to hold her. It was like he was physically receiving the gift from God. Then when she passed away, he was the last person to hold her. He was the one who carried her to the funeral director's van and laid her body down. Mike said it felt like it came full circle... he received Bethany from God and then he gave her back to God. That is truly how we feel right now. We are so blessed that God would consider Mike and I to take care of Bethany while here on earth. Through God's help, we did every little thing possible to give Bethany the best treatment possible. The day Bethany was diagnosed with cancer, I knew deep inside that her life was going to be a difficult road. However, I knew God was going to be with us through every single obstacle.

Earlier I mentioned that I knew God had placed Bethany in our lives for so many reasons. I truly believe that the greatest reason Bethany was placed in our lives was to help us fall in love with God so much more. The greatest lesson I have learned through out all of this is: GOD IS FAITHFUL. My relationship with the Lord is the only thing that has kept me going. God's love for me and my family has never failed and because of that we have the strength and peace to make it day to day!!!

Bethany's funeral last Saturday, was really a testimony of God's faithfulness. I couldn't have asked for a better service. It was so beautiful.

I know that sooooo many people have been touched by Bethany's life. So many of you have contacted me personally and shared so much of your life with me. I say this to ask one last question: What should I do with this facebook group? Obviously, I believe it is an awesome tool to talk to people and rally prayer. Should I change the name? I was thinking about keeping the group, but I'm just not sure right now. Please share your opinions.

Thank you once again, from the bottom of my heart!!! Your love and support is just mind blowing. Even the support we have received financially is just amazing! Wow! I could go on and on... but I will stop here.

May God Bless you greatly!!!
-Amy

Thursday, March 18, 2010

32 weeks....

The last picture I have of my big 'ol prego belly is 32 weeks. I was looking at some past pictures and uploading from my old computer. I realized that the last picture was taken 10 days before I delivered - which is.... TODAY (four years ago)!

This year with the boys turning 4, it seems to be such a milestone for me. I don't know why this is hitting me harder than the rest. Maybe because they REALLY are getting bigger and into being BOYS rather than toddlers.

Enough with the mushy stuff. I'll share a picture so you can *try* to share in my pain....

Me at 32 weeks preggo - ugh it hurts to even look at it today :)


Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Easton and his sweets...

Easton after eating his brownie and seeing Dalton still had some left. He loves his sweets!

sent from my iPhone

Paying Homage to the Irish Cuz....


I wanted to share a fun new blog, and in doing so I can pay homage to my Irish, green-eyed cousin!

My cousin Jessica is an AMAZING mom, sister, daughter, cousin and friend. She loves to read, find deals, and share her funny boys' antics. That is what her blog will be about. Book reviews, deals savings, and anything else she can think of.

Check out her blog "Books, Bucks & Beyond".

Love you, Cuz!



Tuesday, March 16, 2010

St. Patty's photo

Happy St. Patrick's Day! We will be eating some green muffins to celebrate.

Dalton, my muffin helper

Sent from my iPhone

Who Doesn't Like Free Swag???

free.jpg free sign image by iloverob_22
As our boys birthday is coming closer, we start to get in the mail and email some discounts and free items. I LOVE free swag!!!

I was trying to think of some new places here in Tennessee to sign up, and posted a request on Facebook. Of course I got lots more help from all my free-loving friends.

Think you want to do special little things for your kids? It has been FUN and still is as we keep getting more coupons. In fact, we even did an early birthday shopping trip this last weekend. In the past I have taken the boys $3 gift cards from Toys R Us and used them towards their gifts, but this year they had a BLAST picking out their own presents from Geoffrey and handing their gift card to the checker.

There will be local places in your area to sign up also, but this is what I can recall I have done so far:

Toys R Us $3 gift card
Children's Place 15% off code
Zaxby's free cookie
Sonic free kids meal
Baskin Robbins free kids cone
Chuck E Cheese free tokens
Red Robin free burger

Other places we don't have here that offer items are Cold Stone, Krispy Kreme, and Price Cutter.

Check your local grocery store and see if they give cakes away for free or discounted. For first birthdays we got a free cake at Price Cutter, and a free sitting at Olan Mills (both that we don't have here in TN).

What else have you gotten for free birthday swag??? Please post in the comments so I can learn new places to sign up!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

SOLD!!!

We were made an offer on our Arkansas house.... again.
We accepted this offer on our Arkansas house.... again.
We have started re-looking at homes here in Tennessee... again.

We are hesitantly optimistic, and will be holding our breath until April 14th when it's supposed to close.

Thank you for all that have prayed for our house to sell (twice), and those that have encouraged us when we have been upset about the process. We are praying for the Lord's guidance for a new home and about the whole settling process here in Tennessee.

This latest move has been gone more smoothly than what I remember our last move was like. Not all about the getting settled, church, area. More about the unpacking, the boys getting settled, etc. I found a picture of us in front of the Arkansas house before we moved there. I forgot how little the boys were, and how they were so needy and didn't understand the process! They had just turned One, and we had two crawlers still. Wow, how they have changed from that move until this one!

May 2007
Denise, Dalton, Quinton, Dan & Easton
March 2010


Saturday, March 13, 2010

A Homegoing Celebration

In the last couple days I have been trying to decide how to write this next post. If it is this hard for me to write it, I can not IMAGINE what it is like living through it right now!

On Wednesday morning, as she slept, little three year old Bethany decided to dance into heaven and hug Jesus close. Now she is PAIN FREE!

This has been a difficult two years for her family to endure, I know the upcoming days, weeks, and months will be just as hard for them. Please keep them in your prayers. Could you mark a day each month for the rest of the year to pray for them? They have a lot of adjusting to do as a family. Bethany was the youngest of three girls, and her sisters are also having to deal with this loss.

Today they are having a Homegoing Celebration for this little princess. Please pray for the family, and pray for those that don't know Jesus that they will come to him through Bethany's story.

If you want to contribute to the funeral fund (even $1 would help!), or want to know more about her story, please click HERE.


Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Spring is here! (now I hope it stays....)

Last Friday the weather was starting to warm up so we headed to Daddy's work for lunch and then to the park! Here are a few pictures I took on the way out of the house.

Easton, Quinton & Dalton
IMG_5112


Silly boys!
IMG_5113

Funny glasses falling
IMG_5115

Watching the plane flying overhead
IMG_5110

"over here boys!" still watching the plane
IMG_5111

Sad faces
IMG_5116

Smiley boys!
IMG_5118

Easton "Momma, I can see myself in the camera!"
IMG_5120

Quinton "I wanna see too!"
IMG_5122

What have you been doing with this warming-up weather???

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Denise - meet books (again)....

I love to read! I grew up reading books all the time. Before any road trips with my family, I always took out a stack of books from the library. I didn't get car sick, so I would just lay down and read the whole trip! My favorite author growing up was Robin Jones Gunn, and she still is a favorite today.

Three weeks shy of four years ago, this reading frenzy stopped abruptly when our triplets came into our lives. However, the reading urge is still in me. So I decided to start reading more books now, and posting my reviews. It's a way to keep me reading more. You might like what I say, or hate what I say, or not care what I say. It's ok! I'm doing this for me.

Then I also found a company called Book Sneeze. You sign up to be a book review blogger, and in turn they send you a free book to review! How cool is that?

So check out my other book blog called "Momma Reads".

You will find children's books on there, fiction, devotionals, and articles. Probably the only books you won't find are academia, I'll leave that up to my husband. Please feel free to leave a comment, your own review of the book, another book suggestion, or just a hello!

I review for BookSneeze

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Do you have a $1?

Do you have a $1? A paypal account or check? A minute of your time to send it? I will give the latest update on Bethany in a minute, but I know some might choose not to read it. That is ok, I understand it is hard. However, they are about to be hit yet again financially with funeral expenses for their 3 year old, and their friends are rising up to try and raise the money and be a blessing to this hurting family.

DONATE VIA PAYPAL:
If you want to donate via Paypal, just log into your account. Choose the tab "Send Money". Put in the following email address: mahagerman@yahoo.com Put in the amount you choose to bless them with. Change the tab under the amount to "Personal" and choose the "Gift" option. (this will not charge the Hagerman family the fee for sending this blessing). Submit and it's that easy!

DONATE VIA MAIL:
If you would rather send a check, gift card, note, please write a check to "Mike and Amy Hagerman" and mail it to:
Hagermans c/o Jones
1632 W. Norton Avenue
Muskegon, MI 49441


Now, for those of you that didn't see my previous posts about this precious family, you can do so here and here.

Please continue praying for this family! This is the note I received this morning from Amy; Bethany's mom:

Dear prayer warriors,

I will FOREVER be grateful for all of the people who have joined this group. Your prayers have meant so much to me and our family. May I encourage you to keep praying, keep seeking God, continue to grow closer to HIM and continue to have faith!!


In the last couple of days, Bethany has taken a major turn for the worse. The blood and platelet transfusions that she once was receiving to help bring energy and comfort, no longer work. She is in so much pain and is just miserable. These last 3 days, nothing about Bethany is normal. It is beyond difficult to see her this way. She doesn't talk, walk, eat, or play. When she tries to talk it comes out like a scream and doesn't usually make sense. She refuses to wear any clothes or a diaper. She has bruises everywhere and her eyes look like a grown man has punched her. They are swollen to the point when she tries to open her eyes you can barely see the whites of them. All we can do at this point is hold her close. We snuggle with blankets and towels. We try everything we can to give her comfort. She is on a continual i.v. of pain medicine. We are hoping this really helps her.


I apologize if this is very difficult to read.


Many of you have been very concerned for Mike and my well being through all of this. Please know that we are hanging in there. Not many people understand this, but our emotions are kind of numb. All we desperately want at this point is for Bethany to be pain free and not in misery any more. We are stressed, however, I honestly am amazed how well we are handling it so far. There are certain people that have been placed in our life that have made things so much easier. The hospice team are extremely professional and truly a God send. Our pastor has been so sensitive and amazing. There are friends that I have that I know I can call any time of the day and will do any little thing that needs to be done. The love and support is above all I could imagine. Seriously, as horrible as this time in our life is... GOD KNOWS!! Because He knows, He has provided in every area. I will continue to place my trust in Him. The very last worry I have has to do with the financial burden of the funeral. I have been told it is extremely expensive. With that being said, I have to just sit back and see that God is going to help provide means to cover all of those expenses. I can't let the stress of finances bother me at this point.


Okay, I better end this update... but before I do. I would like to personally invite you and your family to Bethany's funeral when it happens. Mike and I want this funeral to be a beautiful event that pays wonderful tribute to our princess/trooper. Also, this funeral is going to be an event that will bring so much glory and praise to God. We are praying that so many people will come to know God through this. As many of you know, Mike and my goal from the very beginning of this journey was that God would be glorified through all of this and that our life story would be a testimony to the love of God and HIS strength.


Thank you once again from the bottom of my heart for all of your love, prayers, support and encouragement. May God truly bless you in such a huge way!!


-Amy
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