Our neighborhood- Richwood Place

This is a photo of our backyard after the storm. The rest of the pics are in our neighborhood. We just have 3 streets (each with 3 blocks) in our neighborhood. The majority of the homes were built in the 30s (ours was built in 1928) and overall the neighborhood did very well.

Unfortunately, most of our neighborhood is still without power- including us. I just hope we can get power before we bring our baby home from the hospital. I really want to be able to bring her home and not have to travel with her to my parents or Moustapha’s parents’ houses. Anyway, we have been extremely blessed throughout all of this. There are so many families that lost so much. I hate to complain about electricity. It just makes our home uninhabitable and with a newborn, you just can’t live there without power.

On our way home…

Well, we’ve spent the last 2 nights at Moustapha’s sister’s and brother-in-law’s house in Sugar Land. Thank God they had a place for us. We’ve had great food, good company and warm baths. We’re still without power at our house. But, we’re on our way to take care of some things that need to be done there. We have to empty our fridge and hopefully put the trash out.

Over all, we were very blessed during the storm. We had no real damage to our property. Part of our garage roof was ripped off and we lost some huge limbs, but nothing that damaged our home. We are really blessed. So many of our neighbors have trees in their homes. I just heard from my mom, and they have power. They’re neighborhood was hit really hard too. Unfortunately, they have huge pine trees everywhere and many of them are now on houses. My parents were blessed too. Nothing landed on their home, only a neighbor’s tree that landed on part of their garage as well. Their neighborhood suffered a great deal of devastation. It is really sad.

I am hopeful that we will have power restored soon. I was really nervous about going into labor with the kids not having electricity at home. But, now that both sets of grandparents have electricity, I feel much better about that.

I am due in 3 days…and still really really pregnant….what drama!!! 🙂

Bracing for Ike…

Moustapha, Maddux and I headed to the hardware store this morning to pick up a couple of things to prepare for IKE. My mom is staying with us tonight to help when the storm hits.
We’ve taped up our windows….Bakri says “I don’t like that. Take it down.” I don’t blame him. It does look a bit strange. And it is super scary for little ones preparing for a storm. We’ve tried to keep things light. But, obviously kids have a sense about what is going on. He tells us he is going to be very scared when the storm comes. We’ve mainly just talked about preparing for the winds and that we’ll be safe inside.
Here is a photo of our new kitchen window. Let’s hope it doesn’t get broken.

So, the big thing I am trying not to be worried about is the fact that I am 6 days away from my due date. What is a due date? It is a prediction within 5 weeks (37 -42) of when your baby should be born. So, that means I am due anytime.
We took Bakri to the local Fire Department yesterday. They are 3 blocks away (thank God) and we brought them some cookies and introduced ourselves. They put my information on their board so that everyone is aware that I am very pregnant and ready to deliver anytime. My doctor actually suggested that I go down there and meet them in case I go into labor during the storm. I am making preparations in case this happens. Moustapha is afraid that since I am getting things ready in case I have to deliver at home, that I will be more likely to go into labor during the storm. I hope that is not the case, but I have to prepare in the event that happens.

Please pray for us. God knows when this sweet baby girl will arrive. Pray that it will be a healthy and safe delivery in God’s time.

Hope you are all staying safe….

Moustapha’s Surgery and other happenings around here…

Moustapha had his surgery on his left hand Thursday morning. The hand surgeon said everything went well. He had soft-tissue replacement surgery which required his injured finger to be bent into his palm and attached at the tip there. This is to create new soft tissue that will grow there, so when they separate it, his finger can be formed normally.

Unfortunately, Moustapha felt a pulling on his palm this afternoon and fears he may have loosened some stitches. We are returning to the doctor tomorrow morning. Hopefully he will not need additional surgery tomorrow morning, but we are prepared just in case.

Grandma and Jiddy are having a blessed evening tonight, because Maddux is staying with them. We took him over just in case Moustapha has to have surgery in the morning. If everything is ok, we’ll pick him up after Bakri finishes school tomorrow. Bakri is doing really great at his new preschool. He loves it there. He only attends 3 hours a day, but he already seems to be maturing.

I’m not sure if his school will be closed on Friday…I think most people are getting pretty nervous about Ike…all I know is we are not going ANYWHERE. We live so close to the Medical Center, and there is no way I am chancing going into labor and not being close to the hospital.

So, here’s a question: Do you think I’ll go into labor when the hurricane hits Friday or Saturday OR Do you think I’ll go into labor on Monday with the FULL MOON??? I’ve heard that both of these factors increase the number of women who go into labor…we’ll see! 🙂

Baby Shower at Jamil’s House

My sweet dear friend Jamil, my SIL- Patricia, my sister-Melinda, and my MIL-Mary hosted a baby shower for Baby Girl El yesterday. It was such a special day. Every detail was thought of. The theme was being a girl and a woman. There was a lot of focus on Baby’s El’s family history as well as a game that let the guests give their advice and thoughts to me and Baby El about life, spirituality, money and love. Each guest received a candle with a request from Maddux and Bakri to light the candle to celebrate the birth of their baby sister. I loved that!
She got beautiful gifts- blankets, clothes, bibs, bedding, etc. Lots of pink and brown…the colors we’ve chosen for her room. I ran home (well sort of) and washed everything right away. I’ve now packed her bag for the hospital too. So, she will be fashionably wrapped and dressed for her ride home…
Isn’t this cake adorable!?!

One project down….

This is the front of our house now!
Here are Bakri and Moustapha in front of the house with only a few more bricks to go up!

So, the brickwork on the front of the house was completed on Friday. Here are some pics of it being completed and the way it looks now. We’re pretty happy with the way things turned out. We also got our house numbers put next to our front door in stone. We love this! It is still drying, but it looks incredible and much better than it did before. Now we are going to get the door refinished. So, things are moving in the right direction. Here are me and the boys on the front porch…
We also met with a painter today. Jamil recommended her painter. He was very nice and gave us a good price. He can start the job September 29th…which will definitely be after the baby arrives. But, maybe that is a good thing. Because, at least we will know that we are staying at home until the baby is born and we’ll have a few days with her at home before we need to leave.

Brick by Brick

Well, we are nearly finished with the brick work on the front half of our house. Here are a couple a pictures as it is going up. This is the second time the brick has gone up…the first crew couldn’t line the bricks up. This crew is doing a great job, thankfully. They should be completely finished by tomorrow evening.

They will also be putting our house numbers up in stone next to the front door. I am really excited about this. We used to have numbers on a screen door that covered our front door. But, we accidently got rid of the numbers when we discarded the door. But, since this is going to look so much nicer, I am really glad that happened.

Here is what the front of our house looks like today. Hopefully it will all be completed tomorrow and I can post our “after” photos next to the before ones…it is quite a difference.

Surgery Thursday

Well, we had not so good news at the Plastic Surgeon today. It turns out Moustapha’s injury (crush-avulsion injury with ischemia) will require soft tissue replacement surgery. This is something that must take place within 10 days of the injury. He will have an initial surgery on Thursday morning that will leave him without the use of his hand. He will then have another surgery 2 weeks later.

We are grateful that there is something that they can do for him. But, disappointed that he won’t be able to use his hands during this time. I am hopeful that Baby Sister will wait at least 1 week to arrive. Now, I say that, but I will be delighted if she comes sooner. It’s just that I’d rather her come when he’s not in surgery or just recovering from surgery. Oh the drama!!!
Praise God it is not any worse and that we only injured one finger.

Keep us in your prayers. We need them! LOL…

Our First Dinner Party

So, now that we have running water in our kitchen sink and one countertop, we can use our kitchen. Still in a limited basis, but we can use it none-the-less. Thursday night, Michael and Patricia came by to bring us Michael’s truck. Our plan was for Moustapha to use the truck to do some of the loading and unloading of trash from our house. Unfortunately, Moustapha’s accident Saturday morning has left him unable to do any lifting and I’m obviously no help.

Anyway, they came over. And we were talking and having such a great time that it quickly became late. The kids were having a great time together and it was fun to see our house operating as a place where friends and family can gather, hang out, and have some fun. So, we decided to make sandwiches (our stove isn’t hooked up yet) and it was fun. Patricia helped me and everyone ate and enjoyed our time together. It gave us a taste of what life will be like when all of this is finished.

We met with a painter yesterday. He’ll give us an estimate tomorrow and then we’ll need to see his work before hiring him. We also just got another contact for a painter. So, hopefully one of these will work out, so we can get this house painted and finished asap!

Our Labor Day Weekend Trip to the ER

We started off the day with a new crew of brick layers…the first ones couldn’t keep the brick in a straight line. We had communication issues with them. We kept talking about lining up the bricks straight with the existing brick and mortar already on the house and they kept talking about it being “level.” Meaning they were laying the brick level with the earth….however, our house is not exactly level with the earth, so putting bricks on that are level, but not straight with the house, looked very very odd!

Meanwhile, after Moustapha and I went outside to examine the new brick work, we headed back inside the house. The kids had just finished breakfast and were still in their highchairs. Moustapha came in first and I was right behind him. He placed his hand in the door frame to balance himself to take off his shoes. Unfortunately, his hand was also in the hinge side of the door and when the door closed behind me, it closed on his finger. UGHH! It was horrible. I won’t go into the gory details. But, it was bad and part of his finger remained in the door….We rushed him to the Emergency Room. Thankfully there was no wait for him and they got him right in. They were able to stitch his finger back together, but we won’t know the prognosis until we meet with a plastic surgeon on Tuesday. It is unlikely that the portion that was stitched on will take, but we are hopeful and praying for healing. Hoping for some better days….