Friday, January 30, 2009

And....party of FIVE

Have you been wondering what happened to me???

This little one just doesn't keep to our family plans!

Baby's conception was a surprise!

At the first ultrasound we discovered the pregnancy was about 4 weeks further advanced than we had calculated.

C-section was scheduled 10 days before the due date.

But baby just couldn't wait!

Lily Cate arrived on January 28 at 3:15pm, born crying! She's healthy and perfect. 6lbs, 5oz and 19in long. My smallest baby by far!

Life has been quite a whirwind (especially for Bean) as SO much wasn't ready for this baby's arrival.

Lily and I arrived home tonight. Miss Rose and Gracie were really missing having Mommy at home, so I was thankful the doctor released me. Since it was my third c-section, I know the routine pretty well and can actually get more rest at home.

Sometime next week I will try to share the rest of the story. In the meantime I'll be resting and cuddling my baby girl and enjoying our family.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Never A Dull Moment Around Here

I've given up trying to plan and control life. At least for a few days! It kind of feels nice, especially since it means I am trusting in God more and my faith is increasing.

I woke up yesterday feeling pretty terrible and reminding myself--just two more weeks. I am a MUCH happier mom of a newborn than I am a 9-month pregnant lady. The sleep deprivation and craziness of three kids I can handle. My body not working, very difficult! Somehow I got us out of the house and got Miss Rose to school on time.

As the day wore on, I definately wasn't feeling better. By the time I was driving to get the kids I called Bean and said--I think it's time to go in and get checked. I'd started having more frequent and painful contractions. Better safe than sorry. Got my girls and took them to Grandma's house and Bean met me there.

When I got to the hospital I was having contractions 2-4min apart and at times lasting over a minute. I had dilated to a 2 (from 1 last week). The on-call doctor (who was consulting with the nurse over the phone) ended up having them give me 3 shots of terbutiline to relax my uterus and get the contractions to stop. Finally, it worked.

I'm not completely sure why the doctor was so determined to stop my labor as I am just a day away from 37 weeks. All I could really gather was that given my history, they felt better stopping my labor and having me figure out delivery with my own doctor.

So I'll be seeing my doctor as soon as they can get me in today. I am feeling like I am done with this pregnancy and my body is too--which it was trying to tell us last night! 37 weeks seems a bit late to be put on bedrest for just 10 days until my scheduled c-section. Plus my back gets SO painful after too much time in bed or even sitting that I would be absolutely miserable.

It may require testing the baby's lungs for maturity, but I'm hoping and praying that's what the doctor thinks is best. Or I just continue with life as usual and the next time the contractions start, it's an automatic c-section.

Tomorrow...I'll post a blog about Miss Gracie's birth...which will explain a lot of this!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

More like home

It's hard to say why, but the transition to our new house has been very odd for Bean and I. I think it is a combination of many things. The fact that this is a "forever" home...or at least a "very long time" home. That's an odd idea, a bit of a foreign concept. This is our 5th home in 7 years of marriage, so we've been used to the constant change. It's hard to mentally grasp that we don't have to move again. That we own this home. That we can really make it our own even more over the course of time.

The other factor is the new baby coming...because we aren't settled yet, the idea of bringing a new baby home is weird. It's not quite home yet. And yet a new baby is coming. I'm starting to get to nest, but not too much yet. One of my goals this weekend was to unpack all the baby stuff so I knew where it was in order to prepare and wash it. Thankfully I found it all!! Probably over the weekend and next week I'll get it washed and ready.

Celebrating Miss Rose's 5th birthday last night helped make it feel more like home. That's what happens when you have 11 adults and 6 children in a 1100 square foot house!! It was wonderful to have family here. Yes there are stacks of boxes, lighting is inadequate, not all the curtains are up, but we had family in our home. That did a lot in making it feel more like home.

Tonight we're getting the kitchen started. Yay! Every day, a little more like home...

Monday, January 26, 2009

The Story of Miss Rose



Miss Rose is 5 today! It's incredible to think that I've been a mother for 5 years now. That my first precious baby is 5. 5 seems like a big deal. No longer a toddler, not even a preschooler. But soon to be a kindergartener. An elementary school student.

I thought it would be fun (for me and hopefully for you too) if I recount the story of Miss Rose in celebration of her birthday.

Bean and I got married in the fall of 2001. I've always loved kids and couldn't wait to be a mom. I've always said (and my friends will vouch for its truth) that if I didn't have strong morals in high school, I probably would have gotten pregnant just to have a baby! I definately wanted to enjoy marriage with Bean, but also looked forward to becoming a mom.

In the spring of 2003 I ditched the birth control pills! We avoided pregnancy for a few months to get my body back on track and then Miss Rose was concieved the first month we "tried." I felt very blessed to concieve so easily. It took a few days for a pregnancy test to turn up positive. I was baffled that my cycle hadn't started but the test was negative. I do remember digging a test out of the trash and seeing a second line on it--but it was well past the timeframe, so I discounted it.

Finally a test came up positive in the right timeframe and I was ecstatic! Bean was scared...but excited. He also went out and bought the most expensive name brand pregnancy test he could find just to "confirm" as he didn't know if he could believe my generic test. I had a small amount of bleeding that gave us a scare early on, but an ultrasound confirmed we had a healthy baby!

I had a great pregnancy. I was fat and happy!! I would have loved to keep the baby's gender a surprise, but Bean convinced me we should find out as it was our first. We lived in a one-bedroom condo and planned to stay there with the baby until we absolutely needed to make a change. I was in grad school at the time working on my master's degree and also being a part-time associate youth pastor.

Probably the most difficult part of my pregnancy came when I was let go from my job at the church while 7 months pregnant due to a change in leadership. My belly was rather round by then, so I felt very un-employable. Thankfully God provided and I worked for a friend's daycare until shortly before birth.

At my 36-week appointment I asked my doctor to confirm that the baby was in the right position. Within seconds, she announced that my baby was quite breech. My mom had 4 drug-free births, 3 of which were at home, and I had been planning on a drug-free hospital birth. Well, Miss Rose's stubborness and large size threw a wrench into that plan. We chose to wait and see if she would turn on her own, but she never did.

I had a scheduled c-section on January 26, 2004, about 4 days before my due date. We were nervous and excited. Although I disliked having surgery--and the medications made me sleepy, nauseous and I vomited twice after she was born--Miss Rose's birth was amazing. It was surreal to look over and see her moments after birth and realize that she had been growing in my belly. She was 8lbs and 3oz---a lot of baby for a woman who is 5'4", which must be one of the reasons why she was breech.

I think we had over 20 visitors the first day in the hospital. Everyone knew we had been scheduled and they were all so excited for us and wanted to meet the baby. It was special, and tiring!

Becoming a mom for the very first time was incredible. It was everything I thought it would be and more. I have such fond memories of those first months together.

The first 5 years have been amazing, challenging and always full of surprises. I love my firstborn daughter so much, even when she challenges me. She will always be my first baby, and that is a special place in a mom's heart. (although each of my children have a special place like that, they just have different labels!)

By the way... I scheduled this to post the exact time Miss Rose was born, 5 years ago today!

A little collage of the early days and years of Miss Rose!



Curious about VBAC's?  Read these posts about my subsequent deliveries.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Grounded

I've been grounded. Perhaps the doctor I saw yesterday was a bit over-reactive, but you gotta listen to the doc, you know?

I'm 36 wks pregnant now and at my appointment yesterday I was 1cm dilated and beginning to efface. Which really isn't that out of the ordinary, especially for a third pregnancy. But for some reason the doctor (one I haven't seen before) was very concerned that I won't even make it to my c-section date, which is 10 days before my due date even. For reasons I do plan to share in a later blog, actually going into labor is not the best thing for me or the baby.

So I'm under orders to rest a lot, no heavy lifting, no exercise etc. Which is JUST lovely to hear the weekend we are moving. No packing the boxes I've been needing to pack. No cleaning. UGH.

I'm sure some think this is like a dream--being TOLD not to do anything. But I am one who likes to stay active, to participate, and lets just face it, to be in control. And I can't do any of that.

Right now I'm sitting on the couch, stewing. Chomping at the bit to get some stuff done. Bean is at the new house finishing stuff up so we can move tomorrow night. If he comes home and I've done any work, I'm in BIG trouble.

We have great family and friends who are helping and will do whatever necessary to get us moved and settled. It's not a matter of things not getting done, it's just that I want to be able to do stuff.

But I'd definately prefer this baby wait a week or more before it makes an appearance. I still have a little baby shopping to do. Miss Rose turns 5 on Monday and is having a small pottery painting party with friends next Saturday. I don't want to miss that stuff!

Baby will come when baby will come though. It's all in God's hands. If baby needs to come earlier because it's better for one of us--then so be it!

In the meantime....I'm grounded.

A name is a good thing

Every person is different, but for me, knowing my baby has a name is a good thing. I don't think I would ever engrave or embroider the name of my unborn child just in case we changed our minds. But with each of our children, we've had a pretty good idea what their name would be--and we were right.

I remember that after Miss Rose was born, Bean immediately began to refer to her by her name (even though he had preferred a different name for her). I was in a slightly drugged state of mind and thought--but we didn't talk about it to make sure that was her name. But there was no doubt, it was her name. We didn't even have a second girl's name when Gracie was born, so there was no question about her name.

As I've shared before, it's taken SO long to arrive at a name for this little bean sprout should it be a girl. Both our daughter's names end in the short "a" sound and I didn't want a third girl's name ending with the same sound. Silly I know, but it's just one of my oddities. But SO many names we like end in that letter or sound.

Finally though, we have a front runner for a girl name and I can even imagine calling a new baby girl by this name. And it fits, it works. It feels right. Just in case, we do have a runner up.

With moving this weekend, nothing is set up or ready for the baby, although after next week it will be. I've waited to make some last purchases. But if it's a girl, I think she has a name. And to this un-nested mama, that feels good!

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

I am SUPPOSED to get huge

People are delighting in telling me how big my belly is getting, how I've really popped or that I'm really looking like I'm going to have this baby soon.

These are people who see me on a regular basis.

Um, I'm about to be 36 weeks pregnant. I am SUPPOSED to look like I'm ready to have a baby, because I am. I'm not quite sure what they think I should look like or why they are acting so surprised. Haven't you seen a 9-month pregnant lady before?

I feel like I have this conversation about 10 times a week. Many are the same people who watched me go through my last pregnancy, so it's not like my pregnant bod is some surprise.

Honestly, I don't get it. Are they looking for something to conversate about? Am I like a train wreck that you just can't avoid staring at and commenting on?

I am not offended, truly I'm not. I realize my belly is pretty big. It means my baby is growing healthy and strong. I'm on the shorter side and I have good-sized babies, so my belly should be big. I don't mind people commenting on it. I simply don't quite get how they phrase their comments.

Yes people, I'm huge. It's okay. You can tell me that. Just quit acting like it's some shock or abnormality. I probably have a 7lb baby inside me right now, who will perhaps be close to 8lbs by the time he or she arrives.

I'm growing a baby, and I'm proud.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

And the car laughed...

Have you ever heard a vehicle laugh? I swear mine just did.

With all of the expense (i.e. debt) associated with a new house and moving, we've decided to wait a bit on a larger vehicle. After we see what our tax return is and get used to mortgage payments and the bills at the new place, we'll see if it's in our budget.

Many figure out how to put three carseats across one bench seat, so certainly we can too. Easy, probably not. Possible, yes.

I decided to experiment a bit with our current seats. It became quickly clear that Miss Rose and Gracie's seats are not compatible next to each other. New baby needs to be on the outside for ease of buckling and also taking the infant seat out when desired. Miss Rose is the obvious choice for the middle as she is the most self-sufficient in her seat.

As I scooted Miss Rose's seat to the middle spot, the car began to titter. And then began to just laugh right out loud. I even tried unscrewing the armrest from one seat to see if it helped. The car just laughed even louder.

I may have lost the battle, but I'm still determined to win the war! I guess we'll start with a booster for Miss Rose. My hopes of 5-point harnessing her until age 6 probably need to end. She's the size of a 6 or 7 year old, so she should be safe. If a new booster doesn't fit next to Gracie's seat--she'll have to get a new one too.

Cheaper than a car payment we perhaps can't afford, right?

And hey, CRV of mine, SHUT UP! I can still hear you laughing out in the driveway. It was worth a try alright.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Pregnancy IS a workout

Last week after a 2.5 mile brisk walk my body felt as if I'd run 5 miles. And I know what it feels like to run 5 miles, because 4 miles was my standard run until I was around 6 months pregnant--and I would do 5-6 miles if I had extra time or was training for a race.

I was reminded how much work it is on a body to be pregnant. Especially 8 or 9 months pregnant. Not only am I carrying around extra weight, but it's concentrated in one area--throwing me off balance and making my muscles have to compensate.

Throw in the 5-yr old and 21-month old trainers that are always challenging my body, my pregnancy workout is ramped up even more. I don't need daily exercise, in fact I can't quite handle daily exercise, with the demands of life and children on my pregnant body.

I am still trying to get in 3 days of exercise a week. I do feel like my body is different with this pregnancy due to more exercise. I'm hoping it means it will bounce back a bit quicker than in the past. But I've offically retired the running shoes and am having to settle for a brisk walk.

As always, I try to find the good points in requiring a c-section--and one of them is that I won't be able to exercise for a few weeks. Hopefully I'll be able to do some walking after 3-4 weeks and then back to more exercise after 6 weeks. So I'm trying to keep it up until my c-section (which is in THREE weeks) and I'll enjoy the break as I recover and cuddle with my new baby.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Cyber-nesting

Nesting is almost like a God-given right for expectant mothers! This phenomena peaks its head out every once in while through the entire pregnancy (and I'm sure in the waiting period for adoptive moms) but really rears its head towards the end.

Every fiber of my being wants to nest and prepare for this baby. Since its our third time around, I realize that what you actually do need for the first several weeks isn't as much as one might think. Baby doesn't need a complete nursery or even wardrobe. Baby needs a place to sleep (which can also be your bed!), some onsies to wear and blankets to keep warm. Of course things like swings and bouncers make life a bit easier.

Moving just weeks before birth doesn't really compliment this nesting instinct. Especially moving two weeks before the impending delivery! I can't nest in much of a physical sense. I've made a few purchases here and there, usually when I find a deal I can't pass up. (like a $20 My Breast Friend nursing pillow from the closing store at www.babycenter.com) But for the most part, I've had to wait and to resist. It's pointless to stock up on basics, even diapers, when they are just going to have to be moved.

Thing is, not only do I want to nest for the baby, but I want to nest for our entire new house. Since the girls will be sharing a room for the first time, and have "new" bunkbeds--I want new bedding for them. We may need to purchase another dresser. We may need more toy storage and organization. We may need some end tables for the living room since we've been using a coffee table in a corner as an end table and a kids table at another end to hold our lamps (which don't have functioning switches and require plugging/unplugging for the desired function).

Bean has been laughing at me because I spend time almost every evening "cyber nesting." I'm browsing Babies r Us and Target online for random baby stuff. I'm checking out clothing at Gap and Gymboree. I'm trying to find a steal on Pottery Barn quilts on ebay. (For the record though, he has spent his share of time researching some appliances we need).

Cyber-nesting isn't all that bad. In fact, I would guess that I'm spending LESS money than I would if we weren't moving. Partially because there are things I just haven't purchased yet, and also because I am haunting ebay and other sites for the best deals. I got a changing pad cover on ebay tonight for $7 (including shipping) that was probably $20 new. Somehow I also purchased a new pair of shoes for myself. Not sure how that benefits the baby, but it was a deal I couldn't pass up!!

It will be fun to go out and get the little things the week before the baby is born. I guess it gives me something to look forward to. And hopefully I'll find the perfect bedding for the girls' new room--I just can't decide! I keep saying in some ways, it's good I don't know the baby's gender because I would probably even want to do more in preparation for the baby.

I've yet to find the perfect "take home" outfits though. I like to buy a special outfit for both genders and then return whatever I don't need. For some reason the "take home" outfit has been really important to me for each child. I'm on the hunt.

Off for more cyber-nesting!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

The Latest

Here's what's going on lately...

Miss Rose started school today! She did fabulous. She's in a 5-day program called Early Admit Kindergarten (EAK) that meets each morning from 8-11:20. Yesterday we went to an orientation where she played outside while the teacher met with the parents. It was a great introduction to the facility and children for her. I was a bit concerned because she recently bragged about crying for a year and a half each time I dropped her at daycare. But no tears this morning! And she was so excited when I picked her up. It's going to be wonderful for her.


On our back patio...

She specifically wanted to wear her "High School Musical" shirt. What's amusing is that she has seen the movie maybe one time and it only holds novelty because her cousin is super into the movie and talks about it all the time. This shirt was a hand me down from a friend, but Miss Rose got all excited about it.


Getting ready to go into class

Our move has been postponed by a week in order to be able to complete the wood floors. In the long run, it won't matter too much. But right now it just feels like we are living in limbo. Much of the house is packed and there are boxes everywhere. I'm not motivated to clean or organize anything because I know eventually it ALL will be moved.

Did I share that I found GREAT bunkbeds on craigslist? I cannot wait to see them set up in the girls' room.

I am just about 35 weeks pregnant and feeling it!! This baby is so out in front that many of my shirts are about to be too short...they aren't going to cover the bottom of my belly soon. I see my doctor tomorrow and maybe I'll get an official c-section date. We shall see! We've had our boy name picked out for a while now and I think we're pretty sure about a girl name. But...you'll have to wait to find out the names!! It feels good to have some solid options that I like though. It's taken so long the third time around.

Gracie seems to sense the impending change. She is quite attached to mama these days and just loves to climb all over me and be held. It's probably going to be a good thing that Miss Rose is in school in the mornings because while I'm on maternity leave because while the baby is sleeping, I'll be able to have some one on one time with Gracie.

So, that's the latest!!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Living Within Our Means

When people hear that we are moving, that we have purchased a house, we hear some common questions.

Is the house bigger? Are there more bedrooms? Big yard?

The answer to each of those questions is, NO. To some it may seem odd, but it's living within our means.

Granted, the main reason we have bought a house and are moving is to provide my parents with a place to live. The reason we were even able to buy it is because my parents provided the down payment. For reasons it would take too long to explain, they can't own a house on their own, nor should they. It's better for all of us to be together.

Of course Bean and I had to make this decision not only because it was good for my parents, but also because it was good for us. We are losing square footage in comparison to our current home and as would be expected, the bedrooms are smaller. Because the garage will be expanded and converted to a granny flat for my parents, there really isn't much backyard.

BUT...it's a fantastic neighborhood with good schools. It's central to most everything in our city. Hopefully Bean's commute will be a bit shorter. And we will be paying ourselves by paying the mortgage, investing in our future.

Most importantly, it's within our means. Sure, we qualified for a home with a higher purchase price, but the mortgage would have been a big stretch. Someday it would be nice if Bean can quit his 12-hr a week part-time custodial gig at the church.

We want our children to have a bit more than we had growing up, if possible. But we aren't willing to give them so much that we live in debt forever or are house-poor. Our kids are young and small. Having a small house works now much better than when they are growing teenagers. Hopefully by then, maybe we'll be able to afford a larger home.

Along those same lines, we'll be squeezing our three children onto one bench in our Honda CRV for a while. We've talked a lot about getting a minivan and eventually I assume we will. But it makes more sense, it is living within our means, to not make a purchase that increases our monthly payment. Once we're settled and used to the mortgage and the expense of a baby and having 2 in diapers for the first time, we'll see if a minivan is in our future. I actually LOVE our CRV, so I don't mind continuing to drive it. I just have to find the right carseat combination to fit in the back. The expense of 1 or 2 new seats is equal to one or two months of higher car payments, so very little in comparison.

I feel good about this. About living within our means. There will be challenges. We have to downsize a bit and be creative with storage and belongings, but it will be good for us. Especially me. I have a bit of pack-rat tendency that I am trying to conquer!

So yes, our house is smaller, and so is our yard. But our hearts are full and hopefully there is a tiny bit of padding left in our bank account at the end of the month. And by padding, I mean, we'll be happy with $20!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Things I'm excited about....

The Charger win...and my cute little Charger Cheerleader in pigtails.



Gracie sleeping in a big girl bed! She's doing great...although she doesn't stay straight all night and we usually have to help her adjust, but she'll learn.



The girls' room in our new house!! I found fabulous bunkbeds on craigslist and I can't wait to see them set up.



And yes, if you're wondering, that is a pacifier next to Gracie and yes, I did intend to wean her from it in December. No, it didn't happen. I didn't even try. I'm sure it wouldn't have been that bad, but I just don't have the mental energy for it right now. All my mental energy is going towards just being a mom and a wife, my job, moving and cooking the bun in my oven. I think that's plenty! I figure it can't hurt to keep the binky in place through the move and new baby and by the time Gracie's 2nd birthday rolls around in April, we'll deal with the binky.

I'm looking forward to this week because life should get back to some semblance of normal--at least in work and life schedules. We'll still be moving, finishing up the house and getting ready for the baby. HA. Did I say normal??

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Pregnant Day

I am having a "pregnant day" today. What exactly does that mean?

It means I'm hormonal...i.e. grumpy and emotional.

I am impatient. Which makes me feel like a terrible mom.

My hormones are making my anxiety about various things in life more intense than necessary.

I am feeling FAT. My maternity clothes aren't fitting as well anymore.

I get grumpy when I can't exercise regularly...and my exercise lately has not worked up the sweat I need to make me happy.

I am unmotivated. Which makes me mad because I have so many things that need to be done.

When the baby has been moving today it's causing me pain. I guess it's how I'm carrying this baby because I've never experienced this before. The kid jabs and pokes me and makes me catch my breathe. Ouch!

I think I have just over 5 weeks left before my c-section. Of course to add to my pregnant day, I saw the nurse practitioner yesterday at my appointment, not the doctor, so I STILL don't have an official date. I go in again on the 14th so I hope I'll get my official date and time then. I should just relax about it. But I'm such a planner that it drives me crazy to not know yet.

I am trying to remind myself that this is the last time I will feel this way. That there are so many women who would give anything to experience a "pregnant day.' That this too shall pass.

But in the meantime, I'm going to continue my pregnant day.

Friday, January 2, 2009

The Last Baby?

This morning as we were walking at the lake (my back is not allowing me to run with the jogger any more) Miss Rose asked me if this was our last baby. Previously she has told me we should just keep having more and more babies.

I said yes, it probably is our last baby. But, I told her, that means when this baby is old enough--we can get a dog! She immediately got excited about that and it didn't bother her that this will be the last baby.

Speaking of last babies...I signed a consent form for a tubal ligation today. Since I require a c-section, it makes the most sense for me to have the procedure done at the same time instead of Bean going in for the snip-snip. There still is this part of me that is having issues with it though. I have NO idea why. I know plenty of people who've had the procedure with no problems.

My issue is not even related to not being able to have more children. I know this is a good size for our family and I trust that if God intends more children for us, he has another way it will come about. (or I'll be in that 1% that gets pregnant in spite of the tubal!)

I do need to work out my issues in the next 6 weeks.

I should just be comforted by the fact that we will get a dog one day, just like Miss Rose was!!

Photo Overload

In lieu of my recent blogging...here are some recent photos!



























Thursday, January 1, 2009

Happy New Year

Even though I haven't been too faithful to my blog as of late, I must post on the first day of the year!

The first day of the year in which we will move into a home with our name on the title.

The first day of the year in which we will add a third (and probably final) child to our family.

The first day of the year in which my oldest child will officially start school.

The first day of a year that will hold many changes but also holds much promise.

I'm excited and anxious about all the year holds. I'm not making any resolutions this year. I just want to enjoy each moment and trust God in all.

I WILL lose the baby weight though. I'm not making that a resolution, because it can't be optional!

Pretty much every year of our marriage so far has held many changes and surprises for us. This year isn't going to be any different. But I am so blessed by the friends God has given me and I couldn't ask for any better companion than Bean to experience it with.