Saturday, June 30, 2012


Since we've been home - Michael and I have been splitting up every day. He will take Caedmon out somewhere - to the park, Monkey Joe's, the store, today it's a dinosaur exhibit downtown that we saw a commercial for while we were in the hospital (it was weird for us having so much quiet time, we were able to watch a TON of HGTV. We've never had cable so this was a treat!) :).

And I'm sitting here, catching up on blogs I like to read, and watching my precious girl nap and it's wonderful. But I'm sad I'm not with my big kiddo watching him have so much fun seeing all of the dinosaurs. I looked online at the exhibit and it looks SO COOL. I know he and Michael are going to have a blast and I just wish I was there to take pictures and just experience it with them. Em and I could have gone, but it's $15 for adults to get in and we'd like to wait till she's at least one week old before taking her out.

Also, yesterday I wasn't too active - I cut up a watermelon and made some kale chips (which Caedmon would not stop eating so those will definitely be a new staple in this house!) so nothing too strenuous but it was the most I have been on my feet since Em's birth, and then I rested some, then I played out on the back porch with Caedmon. He was in his little pool and I sat next to him - occasionally picking up a ball or toy that he threw out. I didn't feel like I was overexerting myself by any means but after we came inside my body just felt off. Certain parts of my body that were finally starting to feel almost mostly normal again (or at least not constantly painful) were aching something awful and my back hurt and I was just miserable. So today I'm just going to try to take it very, very easy.

So for several reasons the dinosaur exhibit is just for my boys today. And I'm excited for them to get that guy time. But it just makes me a little sad, too.

And on a different note - things are going really great at home. Like I said, my recovery is very much still in process - it's hard to not do things when you're feeling good it's just remembering that you won't continue to feel good if you try to do things like normal. I'm not supposed to lift anything over 10 pounds (Caedmon is 25). I'm still picking him up some but just once or twice a day. He sits on my lap or we sit on the floor but it's weird not holding him and walking (honestly after 5 days of not carrying him I didn't even realize how heavy that boy is!) And Emmaline is a dream. She's still in that constant sleepy state and is just so precious.

Michael held her while I was napping in the hospital and when it was time to feed her he handed her to me and said, "Every time I look at her she just gets more beautiful." And another time I asked him to hand me my phone while he was holding her, but she was holding on to his pinky of his free hand and he said, "She's just holding on so tight... I'll get it when she lets go." She already has her daddy wrapped around her fingers. :) Basically we're both smitten.

Caedmon is just excited about the baby. We're trying to teach him to be gentle around the baby but our boy is not quite grasping that idea. He's very, very active and it's just tough. So honestly they've been separate unless I'm sitting on the couch holding both of them while we watch TV (Unfortunately there has been more TV watching in this house then we'd like - but we're just getting through this stage. And we will.) It's been encouraging to me to hear lots of mothers I really admire and look up to tell me their oldest watched lots of TV as they transitioned their families from three to four.

Anyway, that's a little random update while I have some down time. Turned out to be more random than I had intended... hope you don't mind :)

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Birth Story

Wanted to get this written before I forget any of it... sorry if I over shared some :)

We woke up and it was a typical Sunday. Well, almost typical. Michael was off from leading worship at church (which is very, very rare - but we knew baby would be coming soon so they gave him the Sunday before and the Sunday after our due date off). Anyway, so we woke up and made biscuits, sausage and gravy - my absolute favorite breakfast. We had bought some sausage at the farmer's market on Sunday and I was so excited to make this :) I'm pretty good at making gravy :)

So then we ate breakfast and got ready for church. All of us together! Michael usually leaves the house at 7, but this week he got to come with us and it was just so nice getting to do church as a family. Dropping C off together and then sitting together for the ENTIRE service. Didn't realize quite how much I missed that!

The after church we headed up to Michael's hometown to go to his aunt's wedding. We weren't sure if we would be able to make it to her wedding depending upon baby's arrival - but I was still feeling mostly okay (later everyone told me I looked slightly miserable but we made the trip regardless). If anything we were hoping the fact that we were an hour from home would kick start labor :)

The wedding was fun but we left early because there wasn't air conditioning which I hadn't anticipated and was just very, very uncomfortable (probably why everyone later told me I really looked awful... sweet family we've got ;) ) When we got in the car we were all kind of cranky. Caedmon had missed his nap - so Michael basically wrangled him the entire ceremony... which is exhausting. And I was just HOT. But C quickly fell asleep once we were on our way and the air conditioning of our car did wonders for Michael and I. :) As soon as we walked in the door home my boys laid on the couch and turned the TV on and I went upstairs to lay down. Next thing I know Michael is waking me up asking me if I want to eat. So I head downstairs and eat.

About an hour later, around 7p, we were sitting on the couch and I felt a contraction. I told Michael I was pretty sure I had one and asked him what time it was - sure enough five minutes later I had another contraction and that continued for about an hour. They were 5 minutes apart lasting about a minute but they weren't too strong - I was able to talk through them fine. Then they started getting further apart and waning off so I just tried to get my mind off of it. We all went for a walk around the block and then when we got home Michael took C upstairs for bed and I rested on the couch - timing my irregular contractions.

We started a movie on Netflix and around 10 we decided we needed to try to get some sleep. I wasn't sure I would be able to fall asleep (contractions were about 4-6 minutes apart at this point, but still not very strong). But we went upstairs anyway. We talked and got ready for bed and then Michael went down to eat a bowl of cereal and when he came back up I was fast asleep. We called our friends that we had asked to be prepared to watch C for us and just let them know what was going on - that labor could pick up or not but we just wanted to have them on standby and to make sure they had their phones on :) We also called my midwife to just let her know we thought we'd be making a trip to the hospital that night.

I woke up at 2a with STRONG contractions. I went downstairs thinking I could work through some of them but they were coming about 3 minutes apart, lasting one minute. Then they were just right on top of each other - I'd have three right in a row and then a minute of two of rest. I woke Michael up and told him to call Mark and Maria and get our bag together for the hospital. It was mostly ready but we needed to throw in cameras and toiletry things. I got in the shower to try to help get my mind off of contractions somewhat but they were very, very strong.

Michael called Mark and Maria and told them we may have to meet them at the hospital (he may have been super nervous at this point). And Maria said Mark started driving 100 mph to get to our house (he's a paramedic so he also would have been able to birth the baby and he even said he was mentally prepping for that possibility when he got to the house and saw me having a contraction). They made it to our house, we never had to wake Caedmon up and we left for the hospital a bit before 3. 

We got to the hospital (just 2 miles from our house) and headed upstairs. Unfortunately my pre-registration hadn't gone through so we had to fill out some paperwork. Hard to do when you have about a minute of rest with a minute of contractions. But together we got it done and I was taken back to the room to get checked to see if they'd admit me. They checked the baby's heart rate and she was doing great then they checked other things and I felt like they were taking just a long time to check my cervix - I was seriously reconsidering my decision for a natural birth. Finally she checked me (to see if I was actually going to be admitted, even though my contractions were obviously strong) and said "Wow, girl! You're an 8!" So they wheeled me back to a delivery room (the natural delivery room with the tub). and I climbed in to the bed while they checked other things. My blood pressure, took blood samples and I can't remember what else all while I was having horrible contractions. There was one nurse who kept saying "Concentrate. Work through it, focus... don't let negative thoughts of 'I can't do this' get in there." And that was just really big for me. So every contraction I repeatedly had the thought "I am a boat." - I blame my friend Faith for this :) She recently posted this quote:

""If a man does not know what port he is steering for, no wind is favorable to him." Seneca
It's surprising how easy it can be to just let our life send us careening this way and that, as if our boat has lost its rudder. We complain every step of the way, of course, about how bad our luck is, how nothing is turning out the way we want. 
How can we be disappointed about where we land when we didn't know where we were going in the first place?
If I want my life to make sense, I need to start with a mental map of what direction I want to go. "

So I started thinking "I am a boat and I am guiding this baby out - focusing not on the pain but on my strength (okay GOD'S strength... I literally had zero strength of my own). But I didn't want to get caught up in 'winds' of thoughts that it was too hard or I just couldn't do it. So, hence the thought "I am a boat." For whatever reason - it was very effective for me! Piece of advice when going through labor... have something like this to focus on. I had a similar focusing point when laboring with Caedmon and it is just very, very helpful to have a go-to thought when laboring gets really tough.

Anyway, I had just made the comment, "I don't want to do this anymore..." Contractions were painful and I was just having a really tough time. The nurse checked me and said I wasn't quite there yet - but too far a long to walk, use the tub, or get any medicine without all of it going right to the baby. My midwife walked in less than a minute later and after talking to the nurse decided to just try to encourage me. I had rolled on my side at in between being checked and her arrival and my midwife told me to try bearing down during my next contraction. So I did and was elated when she said, "It's time to have a baby!" After just one more push, Emmaline was born. Just two pushes... less than 5 minutes. Disbelief doesn't seem to quite cover it.

It was an amazing experience. My last three contractions before pushing were extremely difficult, but I could literally feel her moving  down so I knew I was close - but the hardest thing about that moment is just not knowing how close you are or when exactly it's going to end.

So my midwife walked in the door and it was time to push and then our daughter was here. I couldn't believe it. I said to Michael over and over "I did it." Even hours later I just couldn't believe I had done it! Really, really awesome experience. She was born after we had been in the hospital for just an hour - all of the nurses kept saying "that's the way to do it!" 

And now we're still in the hospital. I didn't have any tearing or any other issues so my recovering is going really well - still have some struggles, of course, but thankful for where I am. And Emmaline? She's awesome. She's got a ton of dark hair and the prettiest blue eyes - just like her daddy. I think Caedmon looks like daddy - but with my eye/hair color... I'm hoping Emmaline looks like me but with Michael's eye/hair color. :) She's eating every 2.5 - 3 hours, nursing and latching great, passed all of her tests and the pediatrician said all around she's very healthy. We're so thankful! Caedmon is pretty excited to be a big brother and gets excited every time he's seen the baby so far - although I'm not sure what his opinion will be when she's coming home with us :) He's been thrown off a bit that mommy and daddy aren't home with him in the mornings, but I think he's old enough to go with the flow. He's loving being spoiled by nonna and pop pop. Internet at the hospital isn't the greatest - so photos to come soon! :)

Thursday, June 21, 2012

nursery update!

(Our last nursery update is here). Not sure when it happened... but I was leaving her room earlier this week and realized everything is more or less put away. Pretty neat. I finally decided on wall decorations (or at least locations of wall decorations...) :) SO I figured it was finally time to give you a little update. :)

The frame on the upper right is just a stock photo - plan on updating it with maybe a pregnancy photo I like or with a photo of her. Haven't decided yet! The pennant banner on the left I made and was going to just hang on the wall, but it looked too empty so I got out a frame we weren't using, removed the glass and backing, and just hung it there. I really like it! The bottom right photo is this card by Katie Daisy. I really love it. 

This is above the changing table/dresser. That is a corkboard I bought a HomeGoods last year for our bedroom but I actually never did find a good place to hang it. My original pennant banner was too long so 3 of my triangles ended up there :) I'm sure they'll be replaced as I find new things to put on her board, but I like it there for now. The print on the right is another favorite of mine from Katie Daisy - it says "Be filled with JOY" And all the way to the right is the hairbow holder I made. Already full of some pretty cute bows for little miss :)

On the front of her door. I couldn't help it.

A mirror I found at HomeGoods ($20!) that I spray painted white (was originally black) and a free printable I found from Pinterest. 

This is the crib skirt I made. Hanging it turned out to be much trickier then I expected, but I'm really happy with how it turned out! 

The dresser I found via CraigsList that my dad painted for us.

love this dresser!

This rocking chair isn't actually going to work. It's not exactly comfortable and seeing as how I'll most likely be nursing in that area in the middle of the night for many, many months to come - it just won't do. We're going to use Caedmon's chair in this room (the ottoman is actually in here already but it looks weird to me right now so that's why there's no photo!) :) But I think our big boy is ready for a reading nook of his own, sans chair. I'll post a photo of this corner once we get that chair in there. I didn't get the best shot of the cornice either, but it's the same hummingbird fabric as the hairbow holder below. I LOVE it. I think it adds so much femininity to this room - especially with the stripes going on on the other wall. 

Closer up of the hairbow holder. Fun little project for me that was super duper easy.

Her closet! Full of cute little dresser and shoes and so many other baby things...
And one last photo of my boys new favorite hang out spot, he loves playing "night night" in here. Uh-oh! :)

So, here I mentioned my little check list - thought I'd run through it real quick and see if there's anything else I need to finish :)

  • Move white dresser and chair into nursery
  • Have dad take brown dresser
  • Arrange furniture
  • Lower cornice by about 1 inch (not finished, guess I just forgot/got used to it where it is!)
  • Find ottoman for the rocking chair (this changed, too - decided to reuse C's chair in this room)
  • Hang prints and other wall decorations
  • Find photos for the empty frames (1 5x7, 1 4x6) (mostly finished - just need to have a belly photo or a photo of our girl printed, but I'm waiting til after she's here!)
  • Make a yellow fabric flower for the frame with the gray print (this should be done tomorrow.)
  • Spray paint mirror for above the crib white  (even though it's not really above the crib)
  • Hang mirror
  • Install extra shelf/hanging bar in nursery closet
  • Look into blackout curtains/blinds (for both nursery and C's room)
  • Finish washing all sheets, blankets, changing pad covers
  • Spray paint rocking horse white (it was mine when I was little and it currently has some red nail polish for eyebrows and rosy cheeks... not the cutest thing as it is right now!) (and this is going to have to get bumped to someday far off in the future, ha)
  • Choose paint colors
  • Measure wall/figure out stripe order
  • Paint
  • Make cornice
  • Hang curtains and cornice
  • Find prints for nursery
  • Make hair bow holder
  • Make crib skirt
  • Find a mirror/art for above the crib

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

thirty. nine. thirty nine!

Shew! Can't believe I'm 39 weeks. On the one hand I'm incredibly anxious to meet our baby girl and just get to look at her face. And on the other hand I'm so nervous to go back to that newborn stage with a toddler, too. I know she's going to come when she's ready so I'm just trying to be patient and trying not too think about it too terribly much. :)

Friday, June 15, 2012

random thoughts...

I can't believe we're going to have a baby. There are moments when I feel like it is never, ever going to get here and I truly in my heart think that I very well may be pregnant for the rest of my life. And then there are other moments where I know it is going to be over so soon and I'm not cherishing the present quite enough. 

Caedmon is my baby. Right now he doesn't have to share my attention with a soul - he gets all of it. I'm nervous for how his whole world is going to be shaken. But at the very same time, I am beyond thrilled that he is going to have a sibling so very close in age. 

I am an only child (well, I do have a much older half-brother and half-sister, but neither has ever lived with me and so in my heart I claim only child status). And I was not a fan. Family vacations were fun, but I think I always felt like there was something missing. Even still I get a little tinge of jealousy when people talk about their siblings, simply because that's a relationship I am unable to experience... but it's one that I've always known I want children of my own to experience. That is probably where my desire for four kiddos comes into play... We're going to see how we do with two, but in my heart I've always wanted four kids. Guess we'll just have to wait and see what the future holds. :) 

Anyway, so I'm thankful God is providing for this dream of mine in growing our family. I'm excited to see the brother/sister relationship and I hope I help foster their friendship well. 

Michael and I have a tendency to be a tad... lazy. We're big time procrastinators. I tend to want to start 10,000 projects at once and I think I overwhelm my darling husband to the point of entire lack of motivation. This is a challenge in our marriage but I think we're learning how to work together more and more on it. But we've slowly been working on our baby girls room more and more. Her closet is all put together, dresser is organized, all clothes and blankets are washed. And today we hung things on the wall. There are still 3 more frames that need to go up but I am thrilled to see it's finally coming together! Seriously, really excited. 

Caedmon has figured out how to climb into sister's bed. Her mattress is much higher than his, creating a perfectly sized step for him to hoist himself inside. He has crawled out only once by himself. He still hasn't figured out how to accomplish this in his own bed and honestly, I think he has little desire to do so. He likes his bed and does really, really well in it. Our pediatrician has a 3 year old and she is still in her crib, so I like that there's no rush. I'm hoping he can hold out until he tells us he's ready for a big boy bed himself.

Caedmon is such a big kid already. He's almost 23 months old and is just awesome. I know every mom says that but man, he's so cool. He knows all of his colors now - and he says them like this. "Ree - Red" "Boo - Blue" "Lellow - Yellow" "Geen - Green" "Foo Foo - Orange" (yea, no idea but it's cute!) "Pu-ple - Purple" "White" And he uses them correctly! His favorite is to point out colors of cars right now. White truck, Ree caw, etc. I just remember a few months ago I was so worried about him not speaking and now he is talking up a storm and is just so smart. Earlier today he handed me his sippy cup and said, "Take it." Nuts. Every day he's saying something new or stringing more words together. Makes my heart so happy... and if I can offer one piece of wisdom to other moms - DON'T COMPARE YOUR KIDS. Really, just don't. Because they are all going to do things at a different pace and that is no reason to worry about their development. 

He also knows the names of all of the sesame street characters, dozens of different choo-choos, and Pooh and Tigger. He doesn't know the name of many people yet. Just last week was the first time he used a name "Eck" for Eric - a friend of ours from church all on his own. He calls my friend Tara "Ta ta" and he tries to say her sons name but I know I'm the only one who understands that one. But it's fun to see him recognizing people. 

He's starting school in September and I am just so excited for him. I haven't mentioned this but he does so well in the nursery at church now. I started attending a Wed. morning bible study and I think that really helped - just being looked after by others more frequently. But he doesn't cry when I drop him off and he honestly doesn't even get too excited when I pick him up - he just wants to keep playing. But it makes my heart so happy. It used to be such a major issue for us and I never saw an end in sight... and all of a sudden he does so well! It's awesome. I'm so proud of this kid. :)

This ended up being really random. But I hadn't posted in awhile and Caedmon is napping and I just thought I'd write. And now I think I'm going to go take a nap while I've got the chance! :)

Thursday, June 14, 2012


Sorry for the lousy photo! I realized yesterday I hadn't asked Michael to take a belly photo this week - so that one is just going to have to do! :)

So, last week I mentioned I wasn't too totally miserable yet. Well, boy has that changed! Last Wednesday we were at church for an event and lots of people asked me how I was feeling - I told them great! I'm still feeling really great. And then the following morning I woke up so awfully sick and have just been some degree of miserable ever since. Pregnancy is not for the weak at heart, for sure!

My midwife appointment this week went well - and it looks like I will be keeping that 39 week appointment next week after all. Unfortunately no other real news to share! Sorry I've been slacking in the blog department... my mind and my days have been busy with one or two other things lately. :)

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

37 weeks

Thirty-seven weeks! Sister is now considered full term, but I'm not feeling totally awfully miserable yet, so I have a feeling we've got a few weeks left :) No questionnaire... just photos this week.

I sat down in hopes of Big Brother sitting with me and pointing to sissy for the camera... no such luck. Mister was off to play with his trains! But before nap time he was rubbing my belly and even lifted up my shirt and kept saying "hi sissy... sissy" pretty precious. I'm nervous for him as his whole world is going to be rocked in a few weeks. Well, honestly, I'm nervous for all of us! Definitely excited but in this moment right now, I'm mostly just nervous.

I had a midwife appointment this morning and everything is great. I've gained about 35 pounds so far - I actually haven't gained any weight the past three weeks. It could be my appointments are always in the morning, apparently you can weigh 5+ pounds heavier as the day goes on. Pretty crazy! With Big Brother I gained 43 pounds, so I feel like I'm doing great. And my blood pressure is pretty darn consistent. Since my first appointment each number has varied no more than two... for the past 9 months. Pretty crazy. I bet you're pretty excited to know that about me, huh? :)

I made another appointment for next week... and one for the week after. Although I told them I was hoping I won't have to make that appointment. ;) Will definitely let you know how things go... but I think it will be at least two more weeks before we meet our sweet daughter and become a (real) family of four!