Our own little Ava Quinn has arrived!! Mother and baby are healthy and happy, Thank the Lord!
Joy was convinced she would be the smallest of all their children because she's gained so little weight with Ava. Nope! At 21.5 inches long and 9 pounds 5 ounces, she surpassed them all.
She looks just like the others. Still no features like our side of the family - none. But the rich dark hair and almond shaped eyes won our hearts immediately whether they looked like us or not.
Her name means, "Life of Wisdom." Isn't that a wonderful thing to call a child every single day? "Come here, 'Life of Wisdom.' It's time to clean your room."
Of course, her name also connects her to Abby (both starting with A) who feels Ava is her own personal baby doll. Abby has been over-the-moon excited about having a baby sister ever since we found out Ava was a girl. We captured a precious video of Abby quietly singing "Jesus Loves Me" to Ava when they first met at the hospital.
Spencer fills the role of Biggest Brother so well. He held her like a pro and kept giving us reports on her special coos and grunts. Even Zach reached out timidly to put his hand on Ava's dark hair. He mostly wanted to sit snuggled close to Mommie while she held Baby Ava.
John and Joy now have four children. A big family by today's national average of 1.75 children per household. But it's been Joy's declaration since she was a little girl. "I'll have two children or four. But I will NOT have three." (Guess being the middle child had a real impact on her.) And yes, it's boy, girl, boy, girl. Spencer - 6; Abby - almost 5; Zach - almost 2; Ava - three days.
Joy really is the hero of the day in the thinking of all who know her. Even with contractions that had her doubling over the last couple of weeks before delivery, she kept rolling along. There were lunches to pack, youth activities to attend, Mother's Day to celebrate. She even managed to keep the house together while Frank and Nathan helped John paint most of their downstairs this month.
Of course with her knack for all that wise mothering, she also knew how to unhook and completely focus on Ava once she arrived. All four births have been by caesarean section which means: newborn baby, return to nursing, mothering three others AND recovering from major surgery. Yep, we call her Wonder Woman!
Sadly, John came down with strep throat and had to leave the hospital. But when you have a family this big all around you who knows how to juggle - you manage. Every wife would prefer her husband be there to care for her after the birth of a baby and Joy is no different. But I must admit, being with her those two days at the hospital became a treasured memory I'll long hold dear.
Everyone had an assigned task to complete. Kristin and Cody spent the nights and deposited the oldest at school then headed off to their jobs. Meagan took the day shift wrangling her own two along with Zach, Abby, then Spencer. Papa kept Joy supplied with new snacks each evening. Uncle Nathan even took Noah and Madi home the night Meagan had to stay at the hospital with Joy. Whew!
It's been a crazy ride this week but then, that's our life. We don't live every day as though we're all wise. But with Ava Quinn around to remind us, I'll bet there will be more wise days than foolish.