Friday, October 11, 2013

2 Months of Crazy

Two months have now come and gone, and it's been one crazy ride. Some days are happy and wonderful and others I want to run and hide from all of the screaming. As much as I cannot wait to go back to work and see friends and students, I am going to miss my baby girl. I feel like someone with bipolar disorder these days! Here's a bit of what we've been up to...

this sums up most days
love this one!
2 month photos...a little calmer than last month
too sweet!
too many super cute outfits to wear before it gets cold
I've been a little stir crazy some days, so I made some free JibJab videos for my family. Here's the Thanksgiving one and here's the Halloween one. They are pretty funny!!!

I'm hoping that my last month at home will be fun, full of new developments with little O, and productive. For now, back to my goals for the day: laundry, cleaning a bit, and maybe a nap. Happy weekend!

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Almost 2 months...what?!?!

I haven't posted in a bit because we are starting to get on an actual schedule! I cannot believe that Olivia is almost 2 months old. Where did this time go? She is starting to be less of a "lump" and more of her personality is shining through.

She smiled for the first time at 5 weeks. It was pure perfection! She was only smiling during the middle of the night feedings at first, but now, she typically smiles at everyone all times of the day! 
 Moses joins us for many feedings, especially when Steve isn't around and Mo is lacking attention. He paws his way up to her recliner and joins us on the boppy. Olivia hasn't really noticed him yet...he should enjoy that while that's the case!
 Olivia hung out with Uncle Nick last week and sported her "My Uncle Rocks" bib for him. School of Rock really should consider getting some of these! I think he liked it too.
 Olivia also met her Great Great Aunt Rosie from Florida. She seemed to like her immensely. I think it's mostly the stark contrast between her skin and her jet black hair! HAHA!
 We also went to Mt. Hebron for a baby shower and some Homecoming festivities last week. She was all smiles (for the most part) and seemed to enjoy being passed around by various people! I loved seeing my friends and enjoying my former students.
 This week, we are mostly hanging out around the house, doing some cleaning and laundry, and just enjoying our time together. Hopefully, we will be hanging out with gramma and gramps later in the week or the weekend.

I have not encountered too much of the following yet, but this is how I feel about parenting advice from other people...thanks Grumpy Cat!
Hopefully, we'll be back with a 2-month post next week, but time will tell! Next month is baby proof the house for our nanny and Olivia's 10 month old buddy and get ready for going back to work (boo!).

Monday, September 9, 2013

Photo Shoot & 1 Month

Little miss O had her first professional photo shoot last week. You can see the sneak peek pictures on Stevie's Blog here

All in the same week, Olivia had many firsts. Her biggest one was her first real bath...

she wasn't too sure at first but didn't cry
in the end, she loved it! She loves having her hair washed!
 Olivia also met her cousins, Jordyn and Chloe this week. Although Jordyn cannot talk yet, Chloe calls her baby 'Livia. She could not wait to meet her! We had a great time with them and know that they will be good friends.
 Little O is growing bigger by the day and becoming more expressive. Her personality is starting to show through, and she makes it very clear when we aren't doing something fast enough or she wants something.
 While she spent a large amount of time sleeping the first few weeks, the naps are fewer now, sometimes the feedings are more regular, and the nighttime has gotten a lot better! We are getting anywhere between 4-6 hours for the first stretch now. We don't feel quite human yet, but we are getting there.
she has already grown out of all of her newborn pjs
 Later in the week, Olivia turned one month old! Where did that month go? Do I want to do it over again...heck no! We took some one-month photos, but those did not go so well. She has been really clingy the past few days and wants to eat ALL of the time. Maybe next month will be better!
many people are saying she doesn't like Disney...lies!
so upset!
 For now, we are trying to survive each day as Steve goes back to work and somehow manage to eat a couple of meals each day, do some laundry, and check one thing off of the to-do list. So far, cleaning is not on that list! It will happen...maybe. Here's one last cute pic of my girl:

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

A Few Truths


  • I'm SO freakin' tired
  • my house is dirty
  • my baby is beautiful! don't believe me? see below!
  • Moses wants to return her
  • most of the time I love her more than anything, but there are some moments that I want to return her too
  • I only get to breast feed, declutter my house, and maybe do some laundry each day
  • I miss my job and my coworkers
  • I'm sad that I missed the first day of school
  • breastfeeding and pumping literally control everything I get to do in a day; if I go anywhere during the day, I don't get to pump and my supply for back-to-work is jeopardized
  • I'm down 25 lbs. pre-pregnancy and have already had to buy new pants
  • I still have 9 weeks left, but I already don't want to leave her when I go back to work
  • my husband is AMAZING and does absolutely everything that I can't get to, but I worry how anything will get done when he goes back to work
  • have I said that I miss my coworkers? oh yeah, I'll say it again!

That's enough for now, time to eat dinner (hopefully, while it's hot) and maybe squeeze in a nap before she's awake again! For now, here's some pics until the next blog post...

Moses spends every feeding in the nursery with me...he's SO tired
my cute little naked baby!
learning new things on her Nemo play gym

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Current Musings

This woman spoke my heart through her blog post...every teacher & parent should read this. Although I will not be returning to school until November, I feel the same way she does every year! Give it a read if you have a moment.

Monday, August 12, 2013

Post-Preggo

I finally have my body back to myself, well, mostly...breast feeding is a whole other story (in a fun way)! I cannot say that I had a terrible pregnancy. Other than vomiting for 18 weeks, I had a healthy and easy pregnancy. All of the tests, sonograms, and doctors appointments at the end were solely precautionary. Now that I am not pregnant, I am already down from my pre-pregnancy weight and I can wear all of my regular clothes again. Pregnancy yoga pants are still pretty amazing though!!!

I had zero swelling during pregnancy, but thanks to IV fluids and 2 failed epidurals, I now I have hugely swollen feet, ankles, and calves. I cannot wear any shoes except for flip flops, and my feet just feel stretched and gross. I cannot wait for this part to go away! Other than this, I am just tired. I am trying to sleep as much and as often as possible, but that is not easy with a baby who doesn't understand what her schedule should be yet. We are getting there though!

I feel blessed that I did not gain any weight and that watching what I ate really paid off. I'm hoping to continue losing weight, but my focus at the moment is just on Olivia and her needs and health. The rest will come in due time!

I wish I had a cute picture of O and I to post, but we have zero pictures together yet. We have a photo shoot coming up in the next couple of weeks so I know that we will have some good photos from that (thanks mom and dad)! More to come at a later date :)



Olivia Renée

Olivia Renée was a difficult decision for us. We have always known middle names for our children based on the middle names that have been passed down to us. Choosing her first name was a challenge. Since we are both teachers, it took quite some time to pick something that did not have a negative connotation associated with a former or current student. We never agreed on a boy's name, which was probably just as well since we didn't need one! We thought we had chosen a name, but then, a coworker used it for one of her pets and she talks about her all of the time. I know we still could have used the name, but once we settled on Olivia, it just fit. I don't know if she'll have any nicknames yet, but I've been calling her Little O since we chose it. 

She is starting to settle in, but we know that could really take weeks. We have had a couple of terrible nights at home and a few great ones as well. She'll get to a routine, but that could take weeks too. We are doing our best to rest, be patient, and just enjoy this time with her. Thankfully, Steve is off from work until early September, so it gives us time to just be a family of 4 (including Mo of course)! 

For now, it's lots of feedings, naps, diaper changes, adorable outfits, and watching her various expressions. It's definitely going to be a journey, but we are ready and we have God who is bigger than all of it!

2 days old
little piggies
meeting Mo for the first time
getting ready for bed...her head looks huge at this angle!
if she could get her fingers in her mouth for every feeding and with every pacifier, she'd be one happy baby!
say what? her faces are too funny!
Join us on this crazy journey! Stay tuned for updates, more cuteness, and I'm sure anecdotes as we attempt to be parents for the first time. Here's to a new and hopefully exciting life change! Welcome to the world my little O!

Saturday, August 10, 2013

The Birth Story

The big day finally arrived! Baby girl made her forced appearance into the world starting on Saturday, August, 3rd. Don't read on if you don't want to know all of the details...I'm not going to tell everything though! We called the hospital that night to see if they could take us to start being induced (see previous post). They said they could not but that we should come in for a non-stress test just to make sure she was doing well and that I was doing well. The non-stress test was perfectly fine, but my blood pressure was slightly elevated. I wonder why?!?!...4 days of thinking we were going in to have a baby only to be told no over and over again. The doctor came back in to check my blood pressure later and it was normal but she said they  were going to keep me because if she let me go home, she didn't know when I would get to return! 

I began cervidil around 10PM Saturday night and attempted to go to sleep. I watched FRIENDS on TV for awhile to drown out all of the beeping on the labor and delivery floor. Sunday morning I got to eat breakfast, take a shower, and then, begin the pitocin. We started pitocin around 8AM and between 10AM and 11AM, my water broke. Holy contractions! The pitocin on its own had been fine as the contractions were gradually increasing, but once my water broke, it went from 0 to 60 in record time. They checked me in the early afternoon and I was still only 1 cm dilated. The nurses originally thought that baby girl would make her entrance by dinner time; they were sadly mistaken! By that point, I felt like a sissy, but the pain was getting a lot worse and I was having intense back labor since baby girl was facing the wrong way. The nurses gave me an injection of nubain to try to relax me and get me through the pain. I was instantly groggy and able to take a nap for a couple of hours. It did actually numb my back labor as well for awhile. 

After a brief respite from the pain, it was back in full force in the early evening. I couldn't take it any more, and my doctor suggested an epidural even though I was still only 1 cm dilated. They made Steve leave the room which terrified me, but getting the epidural wasn't nearly as bad as I had thought it would be. The only problem...it didn't work! I was numb only in my legs for a few hours. My back labor was still intense and my labor was not progressing like it should have. Around midnight they tried a second epidural, but that one also failed and only numbed my legs for a matter of minutes. I think one of the nurses thought I was kidding about all of the pain but later realized how intense everything was. I have no idea what time it was when I was 3 cm dilated, but the doctor said she would come back to check on me in a couple of hours to see how I was doing. I could not have made it through those last few hours (2 turned into 3 since the doctor had another delivery!) without my amazing husband coaching me. He kept trying to get me to relax through the contractions and just breathe. I know many women say that you forget your labor and delivery, but that is a pain that I am not sure that I can never forget. I was absolutely miserable and have never felt pain like that in my entire life. If that's what having a kidney stone feels like, I am truly sorry for those who have gone through that experience!

A little before 3AM, I was fully dilated (thank you Lord!); if I was not, I was going to beg them to take her out of me! I found out later that I would have had a C-Section had I not been fully dilated. The pushing began, and that was actually much easier than I expected it to be. Looking back, delivery seemed like a breeze in comparison to labor because I actually got to do something about the contractions. Two hours into pushing, I was exhausted so the doctor suggested using a vacuum to help her along. I guess this is where taking a childbirth class could have helped because I expected an electronic-like device that would suck her out...I didn't know that I was still going to have to do all of the work! That being said, the vacuum suction cup helped get her over that last hurdle to make it easier for the final few pushes. It was immediate relief as soon as she was out; all of the pain and contractions seemed to disappear! 

Baby girl entered the world at 5:18AM on Monday morning. She didn't cry immediately, but once she did, it was the best sound in the whole world. Another nurse and the on-call pediatrician were there to check her out, and then, Steve was able to spend some time with her while I was stitched up a bit (that may have hurt worse than the delivery!). Once they were finished with me, I got to hold her for a bit. An hour later her birth, we were hanging out in the delivery room with my parents and Steve's dad. It was really nice to just have that family time without a bunch of people in the waiting room expecting to see us right away.

By 8 or 9AM, we were moved to the postpartum floor and awaiting her return from the nursery for her first real check-up. It felt like we had already been awake for all of Monday at that point, but I guess that's what happens when you have already been awake for 48 hours! Although both epidurals failed, I guess it was an all around positive birthing experience. My actual delivery seemed easy and I suppose I earned my merit badge for a "natural" birth (at least a semi drug-free one anyway). Either way, baby girl arrived healthy and loved!



Friday, August 2, 2013

No Room at the Inn

Well...no baby yet...no surprise there since she's technically not due until next Saturday. We have been told since week 18 or 19 that we would probably be induced at 39 weeks since the doctors did not want my blood pressure to get high and then, later when my amniotic fluid levels decreased.

Fast forward to week 38 and we were told we would be induced 2 days ago. We were put on the list, told to call 1 hour ahead of time, and that we would start the process. We called about 5 different times that night and were told to keep calling back because the labor and delivery ward was full. They finally called us at about 8:30PM and told us to go to our regular appointment on Thursday and that I would be put on the schedule for Thursday night. Thankfully, the appointment the next day was extremely positive and everything still looks great with both the baby and me. I was not dilated at all on Monday, but Thursday was less than 1 cm...progress!

We were told to call an hour before the scheduled evening time for being induced again on Thursday, but we didn't even make it that far. They called us on Thursday night and said that they were slammed again with women in labor and emergencies so they could not start the process. We were told to call early the next day.

I called Friday morning and no one even knew about me! What!?!? I was a bit frustrated that I had to keep explaining what was going on (none of it being my fault!). I was told to call back again 2 hours later and I finally got a hold of someone competent. I still had to wait another 30 minutes while the doctors were switching shifts and then, I got a return phone call. I guess they can already tell how busy they are going to be today because I am now on the schedule for Saturday night. We still have to call an hour ahead of time to make sure they have space, but apparently, I am now a priority since I've already been bumped all of these times. Who knows what that means? I guess I could still go into labor on my own, they could still have a full ward of women who are actually in labor, or they could just keep screwing around with us. I am not expecting anything anymore.

We can only hope the labor, delivery, and recovery stages will be more positive. Our experience with the doctors in this practice has been fabulous, but if we do not have good hospital care, I may look into switching!

Hopefully, the next blog post will include baby pictures, but time will tell. We could end up waiting until I actually go into labor and delivering on or after my actual due date! Needless to say, it's been an emotional roller coaster this week! Wednesday was definitely the most difficult because we expected to go in and get this started. I thought I'd be seeing my little girl by now. The reality check has set in, and it is just one more reminder that I am not in control of any part of this entire situation...or my life in general. Thanks God for that wake-up call!

In the meantime, enjoy my little Mo...yes, that is his entire head down in Steve's water glass. He really has no idea what is coming or what is in store for him in the next few weeks :)

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Netflix Binge

Well, baby girl has not yet arrived, and we had a good report at the doctors on Monday. We'll see what tomorrow brings but hopefully, it will be good! Although we have many things we should do off of our to-do list (and we have done many), we decided to watch seasons 1 and 2 of Scandal. Seriously, this is the best show I have ever watched! It is definitely scandalous in many ways, but the characters are extremely well-developed and the plot is dynamic. If you have not seen this show, we highly recommend it!!! It is gruesome in some parts, a bit diabolical, and makes you question everything you've ever known about the media and politicians. The main character is a fixer, someone who makes others look good in the public image and seeks to find out the truth, potentially hiding it for the client. We watched the first 2 seasons in 4 days, and now, we are just waiting for season 3 at the beginning of October. Steve thinks we'll be a little bit busy between now and then, and that we might not notice the time...I think he's correct! We thought the last episode of season 2 was going to wrap up in a nice package and have some finality...the last 30 seconds changed EVERYTHING. Wow! I am now looking forward to the next season of this show more than anything else we watch on television.

Now, we are preparing for some company and finishing up the last items on our to-do list before baby girl arrives!

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Coming Early?!?!

We had our weekly Monday baby appointment yesterday. She is doing well, growing fine, and doing her practice breathing like a champ. She currently is estimated to weight 5 lbs. 14 oz. but it is not an accurate science. She is exactly on track where she should be. My amniotic fluid levels were low last week, and they had only gone up .2 this week. While the doctor wasn't extremely worried, she said if there is any change at all, we will be sent directly to the hospital. My next question was "do you think I'll make it to 40 weeks". She said "no", probably 37 or 38. Well, 37 is at the end of this week! Seriously??? Well, she's full-term, so it's not likely an issue, but emotionally it is. Everything will change for the rest of our lives! She might as well come now since I'm not going to sleep anyway until she makes her debut safely. Please pray for a safe delivery, whenever that happens as well as a healthy baby!

We did get some new pictures yesterday...new profile:
Scary 3D picture:
I know this is vain, but I am praying she's not ugly! This picture is not so flattering, and in all of her recent pictures her nose looks huge! No baby is cute for the first few days, but time will tell what she's really going to look like. I want to say that as long as she's healthy, we'll be happy, but a vain part of me wants her to be cute too. I know we'll love her no matter what, and we already do, but let's be real...there are some ugly babies out there!

The real waiting game/countdown has begun...

Friday, July 12, 2013

Oh crap!

What??? I have to give birth??? This thought has just recently hit me. I think that's why you get preoccupied with vomiting, nausea, sonograms, OB appointments, cute baby clothes, nursery decorations, and baby showers. This way, you don't think about the end! I think some of our baby classes and the hospital tour have put this in perspective this week. Everything is about to change, and I'm not ready!!!

The nursery is done, all 678 loads of laundry of her clothes, blankets, etc... are almost done, all closets and bins have been cleaned out, her infant items have all been put together and toddler items stored, the hospital bag is packed, and we ordered food from Let's Dish for August.

I need to curb my baby spending, but Zulily had TOMS on sale this week, so I ordered some tiny TOMS for my girl. I had quite a few others in my cart so I could choose later, but all of them were sold out by the time I got back to my cart (2 minutes later!). I still love these though! I have no idea when they will fit her, but she had to have some TOMS like me.
I also bought a shelf for her room that can grow with her. It has spots to hold earrings, necklaces, and tons of other accessories. Right now, it's holding her 4 pairs of shoes (all bought by my mom!) and all of her barrettes and headbands. I wanted to be able to grab a headband or barrette quickly while getting her ready and not have to dig through a drawer. I thought this was a good compromise!

Either way, this is how I have been keeping myself busy since there is not a ton I can do or want to do these days. The official countdown has begun...

Friday, July 5, 2013

Thank you!

Last Saturday, my mom threw a fabulous family baby shower for us. Although I hate being the center of attention in that way, it was low-key and nice to catch up with everyone. It was just small enough that I felt like I actually got to talk to every single person at the shower.

As usual, mom did not disappoint with decorating for the shower. There was pink (and black) everywhere!
 more on her name later :)
 tea party
 no space was left spared of the party theme

 fun glasses and straws
 party favors...foamy bath balls

We ate some tasty treats for lunch, and then, opened presents. We received a TON of beautiful items, lots of things we needed, and many sentimental things as well. This little one has quite the library already which we definitely appreciate!

My mom gave the sweetest gifts though. She had saved my coming home outfit, a few baby outfits, my first day of kindergarten outfit, and a few others. She had pictures of everything to go with it as well. She also passed on any book that had been given to me as a child, my baby book and all of the baby "firsts" book as well. It was the perfect combination of past and future! I hope that some of the outfits fit baby girl at some point, and that we can get some pictures!

The SUV was full on the way home, and thankfully, Steve unloaded all of it. It took 2 hours to show him everything and unwrap it all again. I had another 3 loads of laundry to do after all of that too! So far, all of her clothes are put away and she is pretty set for the first 6 months at least!

Tomorrow, we are going on a bit of a shopping spree at Babies 'R Us to use the gift cards we have received and purchase the rest of the items that are immediate needs that she will have. We are also hoping to install the car seat so that we can see how it all works! We have an appointment next week to have it inspected so that we will be ready at any point in the month in case she comes early. We are definitely in count down mode!

Monday, June 24, 2013

Getting Closer....Ahhhhh!!!!

I cannot believe that we only have 6 or 7 weeks left! What!?!?! School ended in a flurry, and we both got sick. I had (still kind of have) a sinus infection and an ear infection and Steve had something like hand, foot, and mouth with a severe sore throat and some congestion. What a way to end the year! To top it all off, after our first non-stress test (results were totally normal!), I was having contractions that I couldn't even feel every two minutes. We were admitted to labor and delivery at the hospital and spent a few hours being monitored. It was a bit scary until the doctor came and told us everything was fine. She seemed irritated that the doctor's office had sent us over there, but it was more precautionary than anything. They aren't sure why the contractions started, but they stopped! It could have been because I was sick, stressed from the end of the school year, or dehydrated...we'll never really know. We only got one new picture, but you can see her spiky hair off to the right. When the tech panned up later, you could see hair all over her head! I don't know how long she'll keep it, but we'll see.
We left later in the week (after another normal non-stress test) to go see our best friend, Lammy! We all just wanted to hang out and have some down time together before we have some insane times later this summer. We watched FRIENDS, went shopping, ate out, cooked out, made s'mores, and just chatted. His cute little dog, Oscar, was my BFF the whole time we were there. I'm seriously thinking there is something to animals recognizing pregnant women! He is normally super attached to Steve, but it was me this time! Who knows?
We ended the weekend celebrating a belated Father's Day with my dad, and the extended family was rather calm. I was surprised! I just had another non-stress test today, and I have another one on Thursday. Steve is writing curriculum all this week so we can put some money away for day care! We're hoping to put 2 or 3 months away up front so that we can stay ahead of it. We'll see how that goes! At the end of the week, my mom is throwing me a baby shower and we are hoping to go to the movies. Good times ahead for sure...baby girl just needs to stay in there and stay healthy! Keep us in your prayers!

Saturday, June 15, 2013

School's out for summer!

School is OVER! I cannot believe that we are done. It does not feel real, and it was actually really sad to leave. I just stood and looked around my classroom for awhile before locking the door for the last time until November. I love that place and I cannot imagine not seeing all of the wonderful people that I work with on a daily basis. They truly are family, and I cannot picture my life without them. We had our last happy hour of the year on Thursday (sans alcohol for me and another friend who are preggo). We laughed a lot and had some fairly graphic conversations about women things that I think every guy in the bar was listening to! Oh well! It was a great way to end the year.
On Monday, my department (or I should say my school!) threw a baby shower for Steve and me. There were more than 30 people there including the woman who subs for me regularly, our former team leader, my favorite intern from a few years ago, and so many of my friends from other departments in the building. This is what I found hooked to my door the morning of:
I had no idea that they were going to do this! I also had no idea how many people would be there, and how overwhelming it would be. Three families of students that I both formerly taught and currently teach put together a huge diaper cake that had outfits, toys, safety items, toiletries, and feeding items attached to a TON of diapers. I was shocked to say the least, and I definitely cried! I was so touched by their generosity. During the shower we had tons of snacks and icecream cake (yum!). Everyone wrote us little notes on these cute little Disney onesies!
We opened presents for what seemed like forever, and it took me 4 hours to go through everything later to take off tags, unwrap everything, and organize it all. That didn't even include time for putting some items together or the 4 loads of laundry I did for blankets and clothes! Oh my gosh! It was nice to go through everything again because I felt like we didn't even know what our friends had gotten for us until we unwrapped in a second time! We were so blessed by these people! This is what our living room looked like for awhile:
Steve's school threw a shower for us on Thursday, and I couldn't go because it was our end of the year staff party. I'm glad that I stayed for that because more staff were leaving than I expected, and it was nice to say goodbye to them. Plus, I would have missed the last happy hour with my girls, and that would have been sad!

The real reason for week was for underclassmen exams, and those seemed to go well. I was just sick of the questions about grades. If you are scrambling at the last minute to earn a certain grade, that is not my problem! You should have worked harder the other three quarters to ensure that 4th quarter and the final exam were not going to dictate your final grade! It is not my fault if your final exam grade causes your final year grade to go down a whole letter grade...you had everything you needed to in order study! Sorry, side vent :) I've already gotten emails about their exam grades because they cannot see those...I'm not responding! They can wait until they get their report cards!

All in all, it was a wonderful last week of school. Hopefully, I'll have more pictures of the shower soon. This week we have more appointments, we're seeing old friends, and then, off to the beach! YAY!