Wednesday, November 25, 2009

A Bit of Everything

I am nursing right now.. ya, sorry for the image, but, if there are any weird punctuation or whatever...just read on...

10 had a good little pizza party yesterday. i have to be careful not to direct too much attention to him--birthdays are hard for my younger kids because i think that all the individualized attention is too much for them to handle i guess. i remember when 4 fell apart when we sang her happy birthday. (Ok, I am able to use two hands now.) That threw us all for a loop when she did that. So I made sure not to have a birthdya cake or sing him happy birthday. I had to laugh really hard inside though, as 13 was playing "Happy Birthday" on the piano as he opened presents. Ha!!! I was also careful to only have three friends over, his best friend and two of his cousins. He got "Hannah Montana" the movie for his birthday present from us and we watched that after pizza. The kids had fun and we ate popcorn while we watched it. 10 was sure to bring out his microphone for the key songs of the movie. It was awesome!

Oh, ya, there was also the infamous $10 horse and rider shaped candy that 10 got from his aunt Jessie. I will definitely be posting pictures of that one! It was worth every surprising penny. (That's for you, Jessie.)

We have been waiting for the test results for Baby to come back so that we know if she has Fragile X or not. Well, after a long four weeks we found out that the testing center didn't have enough blood to perform the second test which would give us the results. The first test is not able to test CGG repeats above 30. Now to explain this part: to be a carrier you would have 55-100 CGG repeats on your X Chromosome, to have the full mutation you would have over 200 CGG repeats.

Anyway, we had to take Baby in to have her blood drawn again. She had to have 5 ml's drawn, which is a lot for a small baby. She had to have it drawn out of both arms in order to get enough. We said a prayer before we went, and I think that helped. She did really pretty well, considering. She was sucking on her pacifier pretty hard--poor thing.

So we have yet another month before we find out the results. I don't know that I am so anxious to get the answer. I don't even know how I will feel about it either way, I am kind of numb to that right now. I think I just want to get it over with.

Baby has grown so much, she is huge to me now. Instead of fitting in the crook of my arm when I feed her, she actually goes the length of my arm and her legs stretch out past my elbow. She has been awake more and it so fun to see her round little eyes. It really makes me laugh when she can't focus and her eyes cross—hilarious! She doesn't cry very often, she mostly grunts. She really has wanted to be held lately. She hardly lets me put her down. But, I must admit, her being my last one, I am not complaining. I love holding her every minute that I can. I just have to learn to be able to do things with a baby, oxygen, apnea monitor and a "hooter hider" in tow. Yes, I said "hooter hider." I got that term from a friend of mine--love it! And yes, I have to cover up because I have older kids around, and I don't want to embarrass them or myself. (smile)

I also forgot to mention that Marc's Dad and Sister have birthdays right before and after 10's and my brother Daniel shares a birthday with 10. Crazy because Baby shares my younger brother's birthday and Brighton shares Daniel's--go figure. So for both brothers I was able to call them early in the morning and tell them that they had a new nephew or niece sharing a birthday with them. Anyway, we had a triple birthday party with Gary, Amy and 10 on Sunday. My family joined in on it too. It was a fun time eating lots of great Mexican food.

OK, now for the pictures.

Just cute in blue... She is 4 weeks exactly in this picture

I had just bathed Baby and she was crying after we got out so I was comforting her.

Here is a few shots from the party on Sunday.


Chelsea and Baby—Chelsea just can't get enough of this girl.

Marc and his sister, Amy

Baby in her candy cane outfit—I think my mom got excited for Christmas... or candy canes...


Here's a good example of her cross-eyed look,
and 4's love for her baby sister


And... drum roll please....

The horse candy sucker thing!!!! yay!!! 10 would not take it out of his mouth long enough to get a good picture... tee hee!
Love this one... Jessie with 10... too cute!


Here they are coloring the gift that little M gave him.

The video below is 4 singing a song from preschool called "Special Me" I am singing with her in the background just to encourage her to keep going. She loves to wiggle when she sings too. So cute!

video

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Double Digits!

He's 10! Wow!
I can't believe I am old enough to have a 10-year-old!

10 years ago today at 2:51 am
6 pounds 14 ounces (4 weeks early)
19 inches long

We love you 10!!! Happy Birthday!


Monday, November 23, 2009

Newborn Pics at the Hospital

My sis-in-law, Chelsea took these pics when Baby was 2 days old at the hospital. I just got them from her and wanted to post a few of them. So Precious!






Sunday, November 15, 2009

Curly Hair and More Funnies from 4

I love it when I wash Baby's hair it goes really curly. Then as soon as it is dry it is stick straight. I suppose one day, knowing me, I will gel it so it will stay for a little while, but, I will at least wait until she can hold her head up...

For posterity, here is a shot right after the wash. She even has her eyes open for these picks! (If you look closely you can see the little red mark her oxygen mask sticker leaves behind when it is removed—that's one of the reasons I can't wait till she doesn't need the oxygen anymore. Poor little thing.)
Here is one of her just because I rarely get to see her without all her tubes and wires, so this is a rare picture opportunity. My mom gets a kick out of how big the pacifier is.

And here is a picture of me and three of the kids. I wanted Marc to take a picture of just me and Baby but 9 and 4 just had to get in too. So cute. And hey, everyone who may be looking at me too closely, remember, I am 3 weeks postpartum here so go easy on me, this is my first full body shot that has gone on the blog.

As I learned from a wise young rabbit in a movie I saw as a kid, "If you can't say nothin' nice, don't say nothin' at all."

OK, so I was eating some of my apricot fruit leather on Friday. It is rolled up, you know, like a fruit roll-up. Anyway, 4 asked what it was and I answered, "Fruit." She looked at me with a funny face and asked, "Poop?" I chuckled lightly (lightly because she cries if I laugh at her questions) and said, "No, Fruit. Fruit." She looked at me and said, "Fruit Poop?" Tee hee! After she had one too many pieces of fruit leather she found out the real meaning of fruit poop. Ha!

4 has a new talent. She can make a real burp sound. It is really funny. Well, at least now it is. I am sure in the near future we will be having a talk about her not doing it because it is rude... but, for now it is funny! I know her Uncle Joel would be really proud.

4 is also at that stage when she laughs really hard when Baby, or anyone else for that matter, ... hmm how should I put this in case anyone who reads this gets offended easily... breaks wind.

She always calls Baby "my baby" or asks if she is our baby. It's funny, it is as if she thinks I might be switching babies on her every day so she just has to double check. She even makes sure to ask me, "What's his name?" She says his because she doesn't know his or hers or he or she, so it's just "his." Anyway, I say you tell me and she does, with a huge smile on her face. She is so proud to have Baby in the house.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

8.5 Ounces

At birth Baby weighed 5 lbs. 7 oz.

The day she left the Hospital she weight 4 lbs. 12.5 oz.

Last week's weigh in she was 5 lbs. 2.5 ounces

And this week... drum roll pleas....

...

... ...

She weighs 5 lbs. 11 oz!!!!!!

Oh, and she grew 1/4 an inch. She is now 18.75 inches long.

Yahoo! I am feeling good about myself. I have really been working on feeding her well. Lots of water, food (and I have enjoyed the food part) and waking her up to feed her during the day. (smile) At night she goes for four to six hour stretches, that is nice.

It felt good to get out with her today, even if it was just to the doctor's office for a weigh-in. Of course it topped off the day when I was able to go to my mom's and she made me lunch. I was only there for a half an hour, but, there is just something about being at my mom's.

Marc and I were saying these last few days how much she has changed. She doesn't look as premie anymore, she is getting more of a newborn look—a little chub in the cheeks. She also isn't so yellow anymore which gives me hope that the jaundice is going away.

I have her down here with me today while 4 is watching her pre-school DVD and I am working on my sister's wedding invitation. So I took some pictures of us together on my computer.





Hey, my friend, Paola just stopped by and brought a gift for Baby and I just had to show it on the blog—they are just too cute for my little cowgirl...

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Gingerbread Temple



My friend, Lisa (along with her sister), is so talented! This is gingerbread! I just had to show it off because it is so cool!

It will be on display at the Thanksgiving Pointe Gingerbread Festival Nov. 13, 14, and 16th.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Data

I forgot to post the new data on Baby last week after her two-week appointment.

She gained six ounces! Yay!

I have to take her in weekly until her six week appointment to weigh her and make sure she is doing well. At her six week appointment we will check her oxygen levels and watch her for an hour without the monitor or oxygen and see how she does and she may be able to come off it then. We'll see.

She has been eating well and really seems to be changing and growing. She is such a special blessing.

And, no, we have not heard back yet about the Fragile X Testing. I promise I will post the results. That seems to be the million dollar question people love to ask us.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Saturday, November 7, 2009

A Shower, A Bow, An Antique and A Dandelion

So today was my little sister's bridal shower! So crazy to think my sister, twelve years my younger, is getting married next month. Wow! She is so cute with her fiancĂ© though—I just love it. We had fun playing games, eating good food, laughing and just having fun with the girls.

I don't have any pictures of the shower but, I do have new pictures of Baby.

My aunt, Rosanne, makes bows—they are called Peek-a-Bows. She gave me some today for Baby for a gift. I got home and just had to put one on her. She is asleep in her cradle and it is still on because it is so cute, and it is nice because it keeps her oxygen tubing in place... sweet!


I also snuck a picture of her with Chelsea—cute!


I also took a picture of her yesterday in her cradle because she is so little in it, it makes me laugh. This cradle is really cool because I used to sleep in it when I was a baby and all my siblings. But, even better than all of us, most of my dad's siblings also slept in this cradle. It is a a beautiful antique and I wished I would have used it with my other two kids.

I gave her her first home sponge bath yesterday because I wanted to see her hair all fuzzy again. This picture she is covering her face with the blanket but you can see how fuzzy her hair is, it reminds me of a dandelion. I blow on it a lot, pretending like it will fly away with the wind. Luckily it is attached...

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Halloween




17 and 13 dressed up with 9 and 4 to take them trick-or-treating. They all looked great! Even 9 who dressed up as himself...

9 and 4 only went to a few houses and then decided it was no fun. 9 had a blast handing out candy to the kids who came to our door. He was really cute about it too, had to open the door as soon as he saw them on the sidewalk. At one point he opened the door and hollered out, "Hey, there's suckers over here people!"

Monday, November 2, 2009

The Labor Story, Funny Things and Pictures

OK, so first off I have to start with the funny things that 4 said while I was gone and a few things she said before I went in to have the baby.

Before the baby came I had been working really hard to get 4 potty trained. She was doing really well and even was going to school in her "real" underwear." One day after she got off the bus I asked her if she needed to go pee pee. She proudly told me, "Nope, I left my pee pee at school."

Later on that day I heard her calling out to me — she had had an accident and was yelling to me, "Mom, mom! My poop is out, my poop is out!"

The first day I was in the hospital my mom and sister were taking turns with 4 and she was really confused wondering where I was. Jessie was trying to explain to her that I had the baby. She didn't really understand and kept saying that the baby was in mommy's tummy. So Jessie proceeded to explain that the baby came out of mommy's tummy. 4 then exclaimed, "Oh, someone's gonna have to clean that up. Oh no! Oh no! Put it back!"

After about four days of being gone to the hospital 4 said to Jessie, "My mommy's lost so I can't go check on her."

While my mom and Jessie we taking care of 4 while Marc was with me at the hospital, she was dancing to her favorite music with her cousin B and danced up to my mom and sang, "Shake your birdie!"

When I came home for a few hours while Baby was in the hospital nursery still the phone rang. 4 pointed to it and informed me, "That's my mommy." (I called a lot to check on Marc and the kids so I guess that is what I became—the phone.)

Once me and Baby were home to stay I was trying to help explain everything to 4 so she would understand this whole "baby" thing. One of the things I was explaining to her was how Baby gets her food. I was nursing at the time and 4 pointed to the side I was nursing on and seriously enquired, "Is that cow broken?" (that's my favorite)

4 asks, "Can I pet her?" (She loves to rub the hair on her head. I think she learned this from petting the baby goats.)

And 9 is such a huge helper. He can hardly stand it. He always says, "She is so adorable, mommy. I just love her to pieces."

Each night before he goes to sleep he comes to inform me, "Mom, Baby is all taken care of. Everything's good." Then when I go in there I see that he has tucked her in carefully and arranged everything neatly around her cradle.

OK, here are some pictures:
Two days before we left the hospital—five days old

First day home with 13

9 just adores Baby
She opens her beady little eyes for 17

13 took this picture

This is the second day home — eight days old
9 wanted to show how smal she is compared to his hand...




Tiny feet
Below are 9, Baby and 4's feet
Her leg is about as big around as Marc's thumb—she is tiny
she came home at 4 ounds 13 ounces
She fits into Marc's cowboy hat!

She looks so much like 4!


Now, I put this part last in case people didn't want to read it, they can skip over it. But, I wanted to document all of it before I forgot. I didn't do this with 4 and wish I had. So here it is:

Thursday night the 22nd of October at about 9:30 pm I started feeling some faint contractions. The didn't really hurt but at about 10:30 they were getting closer together. So I thought I should go to the hospital so that they could stop the labor if, indeed, it was actual labor this time. Besides after going in that morning to the doctor and having him get after me for not going in the day before I thought I'd rather be safe than sorry.

So I wake Marc up at 10:30 and tell him to take a quick shower because we are going into the hospital. I call my mom while he is in there to ask her to come spend the night just in case we are in for a long night like we had been before or possibly having a baby. I was pretty sure that I wouldn't be having the baby that night so I reassured her that it was "just in case." I hopped in the shower quick, too, because, well, I don't know, I just did. Anyway, after that we grabbed my bag and the baby's car seat, went down and told 17 that we were leaving to the hospital and that my mom would be there soon. Then we were off...

Before getting into the car the contractions really weren't painful or anything. In fact when I first got into the car I thought they had stopped and I was gonna be going right back in the house. But, sure enough they came, closer and more painful. It took about ten minutes to get to the hospital and I had two contractions on the way there. They admitted me through the ER and then I went up to Labor and Delivery.

Right off the bat I could tell I wasn't going to like the nurse who was helping me—just and inkling, I guess...

As soon as I get into my lovely hospital gown and get on the bed so that they can hook me up to their monitors I begin to inform my nurse—we'll call her, Betty— "The other two times I have been in to have my babies they can't seem to find my contractions on the monitors and then and hour later when I beg for them to check me they find out I am dilated to and eight and they start freaking out wondering why the contractions weren't showing up. So, let me warn you that my contractions are really low, because I have a tipped uterus. So instead of up here (and I point to the where she is placing the monitor which is well above my belly button) you'll pick up my contractions better if you place the monitor down here (and I then point to the area below my belly button where I am feeling the contractions)."

Betty, with her haughty err looks at me like I'm and idiot and says, "That's impossible, the contractions happen here at the top of the fundus." And she puts the monitor there, looks at the screen and says, "You're barely having contractions, these must be Braxton Hicks." I try not to slap her, and then ask her to check me and see if I have dilated anymore from this morning. She "ho hums" about it but finally checks me and says there is no change from this morning—I am still a two and 70% effaced. She says they will watch me for an hour and see what happens.

Now, when I first got to the hospital the contractions weren't painful but, over that next hour they began to become quite painful. I am trying to be a trooper as I lay there in pain. She comes in after about two hours instead of one and by then I am barely able to breathe through the contractions. She finally comes in, pulls out the paper on my contractions and says, "Your contractions aren't very hard and they are quite far apart. Maybe one minute each somewhere around seven minutes apart" I, again, wanted to smack her—she's telling me that my contractions don't hurt!!!! Aaargh!! I tell her that I have been timing my contractions and they are lasting 2 minutes and are four or five minutes apart. She just looks at me and gives me a half smile.... Aaaaaaaahhh!!! I don't like this woman!!! I am in a lot of pain and I am sure that I have made some kind of progress by now, and I am also wondering why they haven't done anything to stop my labor—apparently it is because Idiot Betty thinks I am a big whiner and am just having Braxton Hicks. I ask her to check me again and it almost looked as if she rolled her eyes—I was still a two and 70% effaced—no progress. I start to cry, if this isn't real labor there is no way in heck that I am going to be able to have a natural birth like I did for the others. Iam also crying because Betty is talking like they are going to send me home feeling like this—there is no way.

Betty tells me that she is going to go get the pill to stop my labor. I am thinking she means right away—but, I seemed to have forgotten who I was dealing with—I think another 30 minutes or so went by. We checked into Labor and Delivery at about midnight and it was 3 am by the time she got me the pill to stop the Labor. When she brings it in to me I am crying so I guess her heart softened a bit so she gave me a button to push once at the beginning of the contraction and twice at the end of the contraction. How the heck am I supposed to focus on pushing a stupid button when I am having horrendous contractions??!!!! Honestly!! But, amazingly I did pretty good at pressing the button because when she finally came back in she looked at my contraction print-out and informed me, "Yep, they are just Braxton Hicks--they are getting closer together and shorter..."

Does anyone have a bat??!!! Ya, that is because my contractions are now on top of eachother and I feel like the bottom half of my body is going to wrench itself from the top half. She begins to act as if she is going to send me home—satisfied that the labor-stopping-pill has done its job. I ask her once again to check me to make sure there is no progress before she tries to send me home in all my misery. She says in her sweetest-annoyed-to-no-end-by-this-patient voice, "Sweetheart, (I hate it when people call me that!) you haven't made any progress yet, I really don't think anything has happened." I beg her to check me one more time.

She does.

Then she leaves without a word.

???

I turn to Marc and ask him if he heard her say anything. By this time he has been by my side holding my hand and helping me breath through the "Not Contractions." He looks at me like he has no idea what happened either.

She comes back with a tray of stuff.

"So was there any progress? Am I dilated any more?"

"Ya, you're a four. You really didn't want to go home did you?"

"Pppfffth!" I am thinking. I even told her that the contraction monitor wouldn't tell her anything unless it was down more. Aargh. She comes over to start getting me ready to have a baby with all that stuff they do. She moves the contraction monitor down and says to me with a sweet smile on her face, "Well, I finally figured out where your contractions are." Gee wiz lady—you're really smart!!!!

So little funny part: While everyone is rushing around getting things ready, Marc is right by my helping me through the contractions. He leans over my face helping me to do the breathing and through my contractions I tell him, as sweetly as I can, "Honey, you need some gum." We all started laughing. I told him it was in my purse and he then joked and said, "Honey I can't find it, can you come over here and get it for me?" Ha!! I laughed as hard as my body allowed me. I needed to laugh after all the stress.

So my contractions were giving me no break and by now, it was about 3:30am so I asked them to check and see if I was dilated any more. I was a seven! The urgency raised and everyone was rushing to get the doctor and get everything ready for a premature infant to be delivered soon.

I begged for an epidural because the pain was so much more intense than I ever remember with 4 or 9. They said it would be about ten or fifteen minutes before the epidural guy could get there. The contractions were intensifying and I was having to got from yoga breathing to the whole "he hee hoo" thing that makes you feel like a dog, but it was the only way to focus myself away from the pain. Marc was the best labor coach ever and was right there with me reminding me to breath and encouraging me and telling me I was doing a good job.

The doctor was there, everyone was trying to get everything ready. The epidural guy came rolling in after what seemed like an eternity. I asked the doctor to check me before I got the epidural.

He checked me.

Then he looked around at everyone and said, "We are ready to deliver this baby. She's a ten."

I figured no sense in the epidural now, so now it was just a matter of trying not to push until they got the pediatrician there to be with the baby. I tried to wait as long as I could but the urge to push was too strong. So at 3:54am Baby was born. The doctor said, "She sure doesn't look 6 weeks early." She was pretty big for that early and weighed 5 pounds 7 ounces.

We were told that we should plan on her being in the NICU for four weeks and possibly being transported to another hospital. I am being told all this while they are still trying to get her stabilized there in the room. She had muconeum so they had to make sure she hadn't swallowed any of it before she breathed. Finally I heard her cry. They let me glance at her for a moment before taking her to the NICU. Marc was in there with her taking pics and video and I just laid there on the bed waiting for my blood pressure to regulate before they could let me get up.

After about three hours I was finally able to see her. She was perfect. I still felt like I was dreaming that I had her so early.

She was only in the NICU until 7pm that day. She was doing so well they released her to me in my room to be checked on by the nurses every so often. What a blessing.

On Sunday just before both of us were to be released she turned pale purple in my arms while I was nursing her! All to familiar a situation, as this same thing happened with 4. I am thankful we found out before we left the hospital. They kept her there another four days and I was able to stay in my room there as a guest so that I could be with her and nurse her.

It was really hard on the kids having me gone so long. And for the two younger ones, they couldn't even grasp the concept that there was actually a new baby that had joined our family. Of course 9 understood but, I think the absence was starting to concern him.

Marc held the fort together with a lot of help from my mom and Jessie. And he was still able to come visit me and Baby once in a while.

I am glad to be home. Baby seems to be doing well. She is on an apnea monitor and oxygen and two different medications. It is a little bit of work but, it is so nice to be home. We are lucky to be home after only a week in the hospital with a preemie.

This is my favorite!


4 with her baby sister at 11 days old
She was so proud and excited to have her picture taken while holding Baby