Friday, June 29, 2012

Emma: 1 Week Old

Emma turned one week old today and what a week it has been. Emma is so precious and tiny and spent the week sleeping, eating and pooping! While Emma's transition into our family has been very smooth, Hannah's transition to being a big sister has been rough. For the first 3-4 days of this week Hannah was a mess. She was crying a lot and throwing lots of fits. While this is common for most two year olds (terrible two's) it is definitely out of character for Hannah. I spent the week mourning the loss of my sweet and obedient oldest child and shed several tears with her. It truly broke my heart to see my "baby" hurting and knowing that it was something we could do nothing about. Thankfully things started getting better by the end of the week and Hannah has seemed to start settling into her new role as big sister. Thankfully despite her change in attitude, Hannah never took it out on Emma and was in love with her from day 1. She has asked to hold her everyday since she was born and is so gentle and sweet with her. She loves to hold Emma's pacifier too, which we found out was because she desperately wanted to put it in her own mouth! I let her put one in her mouth (one that was already broken because Bubbles has gotten ahold of it) and that seemed to satisfy her curiousity and I haven't seen her eyeing them like she was the first few days.

We have had family at our house the entire week, which has been wonderful. We started the week with Brian's parents and sister here as well as my parents. Brian's family left on Monday and my parents have been here all week. It's been wonderful having extra hands to keep Hannah occupied and to keep the house in order! I don't know what we will do when we are on our own. The idea of doing this all on our own is daunting!

This week we took Emma to her first pediatrician appointment, at 4 days old. At birth she was 7 lbs. 1 oz. and at 2 days old (the day we left the hospital) she was 6 lbs. 8 oz. Then at the doctor's appointment (4 days old) she was 6 lbs. 10 oz., which was great news! At birth she was also slightly jaundice but at her 4 day appointment her coloring was improving and her wet and dirty diaper count was up a lot, all good news. We don't have to go back for another appointment until she is one month old.

We gave Emma her first sponge bath this week and she was not a huge fan. But after washing her hair we saw that she has the same hair that Hannah had as a sticks up all over the place! :). We have also realized just how much Emma looks like her big sister did at this age. The main difference is that Hannah had huge dimples in her cheeks and Emma has one dimple in her chin.

We have decided to do Babywise from the start with Emma (we didn't start it with Hannah until she was 3-4 months old). During the first 1-2 weeks Babywise stresses the importance of establishing a good nursing relationship and not forcing a schedule at this point. So we have been pretty laid back about it. However, Emma has fallen into a 2.5-3 hour feeding schedule on her own and is napping for 1-2 hours between each feeding. For the first part of the week I let her nap wherever she fell asleep, but by the end of the week I was trying to put her down for her naps in her crib. On the last day of the week, she took two full two hour naps in her crib without a peep. I was definitely happy about that! But I know there is a lot of work ahead! The feeding schedule that we generally followed this week was feedings at 8am, 11am, 2pm, 5pm, 8pm, 11pm, 2am, and 5am...roughly. She has been a wonderful nurser since birth but was just so sleepy this week that it was a challenge to get her to take full feedings (at least 20 minutes total). Babywise tells you to aim for 15-20 minutes per side, but I was not able to get Emma to do that. 10 minutes per side was the average feeding I was able to get (after a lot of work!) and I was happy with that. But each 20 minute feeding took nearly an hour with all the stopping and starting we had to do to wake her up. It also proved to be a challenge to get her to burp at times. There were several occasions where I didn't do a good enough job of burping and we paid the price - a fountain of spit up all over everything! Oh the joy of smelling like spoiled milk!

One thing that we have done differently this time around is having Emma sleep in our room. We set up the pack n' play with the bassinet and have it right next to the bed on my side. It has made those middle of the night feedings so much easier! I don't know why we didn't do that with Hannah, but we were just so determined that she needed to be in her crib from day one. I don't plan on moving Emma out of our room anytime too soon, but we will see. Thankfully she is a very quite sleeper, otherwise I would not be able to have her in our room.

My recovery has been amazing this week. I can't believe how easy the whole labor and recovery process has been with Emma's birth compared to Hannah's! Everything has been so much better. I stopped wearing the hospital mesh underwear the day after Emma was born (while still in the hospital) and stopped using the huge pads the day we came home (when Emma was 3 days old). I haven't used the ice packs or epifoam since the hospital either. I'm pretty sure I wore those mesh underwear for several weeks after Hannah's birth! What a difference! I also haven't taken any pain medication since coming home from the hospital. I probably should have though because my stomach muscles or uterus or something has been pretty sore this week. Feels like I have some pulled muscles or something. Other than that, all systems are a go! I have also lost half of the weight I gained while pregnant. I gained 31 pounds during the course of the pregnancy and have already lost 17 pounds. I still look about 4-5 months pregnant and am wearing maternity clothes, but I'm pretty sure some of my normal clothes would fit if I tried. I've just been to busy to even try. The maternity clothes are what is in my closet (or the laundry basket) so that's what I'm grabbing. Nursing has been going great but my. Ilk supply has definitely not regulated yet. I am still dealing with painful engorgement and am pretty uncomfortable throughout the day and night. I'm hoping that this begins to regulate next week as Emma gets more consistent and proficient with her feedings. I even did my first short pumping sessions this week and fed Emma 1 oz. of pumped milk from a bottle when she was 6 days old. She took the bottle very easily and sucked down that ounce without a problem. It took me only 2 minutes to use my manual pump to get 1 oz. of milk. I was pretty impressed with that, especially since that was after Emma had nursed on that side for 8 minutes.

Overall, we had a good week, but I don't think I was quite prepared for what the transition from one to two would entail. It has definitely been harder than I expected, especially with Hannah's reaction. The one thing that was definitely not an issue was my fear of not loving Emma as much as I love Hannah. There is no question that I am completely in love with my tiny little peanut! She has wiggled her way into my heart and I can hardly believe how much love I have for both of my girls! I was instantly in love with Emma the moment she was born! I think that's one reason this week was so tough emotionally for me. Seeing Hannah so out of sorts over our new addition literally felt like my heart was being torn in two. I wanted to comfort Hannah and let her know that things were not going to change and that we loved her just as much if not more than before, but I also wanted to snuggle with my new little peanut and enjoy her tiny newborn stage. It was heartbreaking having to take time away from one to spend with the other. It is definitely a juggling act.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Introducing Emma Rose

Emma Rose arrived on her due date, June 22 at 9:04am. She weighed in at 7lbs. 1oz. And was 21" long. She is perfectly healthy and beautiful! My labor was ideal (more to come in another post) and recovery has been so easy! We are struggling with the transition to a family of 4, especially Hannah, but we know things will get better with time. Pictures to come soon!

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Ready or not, here she comes!

We went in today for our final obgyn appointment.  I was feeling very rough this morning (extreme heartburn, nausea and was struggling to catch my breath) so we bumped my appointment up from 3:30pm to 11:30am.  I needed to get in there and talk to the midwife to figure out what was going on.  My blood pressure and weight were perfect and Emma's heartbeat was right on track.  She checked me and I was a loose 1cm, so she made me 2cm (OUCH!) and then had us come into her office to discuss our options.  She gave us a few options, with lots of factors to take into consideration.  These were our choices:

1. Induce on Friday (meaning we go in on Thursday night) with a midwife that we really like
2. Induce on Monday with a midwife that we aren't thrilled about
3. Induce on Tuesday with another midwife that we aren't thrilled about
4. Continue to wait it out for a few more days (they won't let me go past next Friday) and see if she comes on her own

The other factors that we have to take into consideration are the option of cervadil.  If I am further than 2cm then they will not do the cervadil and will wait until the morning to start pitocin.  The reasoning for this is that they don't want to risk the cervadil kick starting the labor and causing me to deliver the baby at 3 in the morning.  Since it is an elected induction they would rather make it convenient for themselves and not risk having to come in to the hospital in the middle of the night.  UGH!  I mean I get it, but it's so frustrating that they would not even allow the option of cervadil just because it doesn't work with their schedule.  With my last labor, I went in 3 days after my due date and was only 1cm at the time with no consistent contractions.  The inserted the cervadil around 10pm and my labor was in full force by 5am the next morning.  That allowed me to not need the next step - pitocin, which I was thrilled about since I was aiming to have an unmedicated delivery.  It worked out so perfectly as I never did need any other medical intervention and Hannah was delivered within 8 hours of active labor beginning.  Since it worked so well the first time, I am really hoping for a repeat with Emma! 

All that to say that if we wait until Monday or Tuesday to induce, we will most likely not have the option for cervadil because I will most likely already be 2-3cm and they will no longer administer it.  This would make pitocin a must which will then make my contractions much more painful, making an unmedicated birth more unlikely. 

Of course we would LOVE if Emma would come on her own but with my previous labor having to be induced and with my unfavorable cervix it just doesn't seem likely that she will come in the next few days on her own.  Also, let's not forget what an incredibly long journey this pregnancy has been.  Dealing with severe hyperemesis from week 5 until week 20+ was nearly more than I could bear.  After two week long hospital stays, countless anti-nausea drugs, a 24/7 medication pump, at home health care that consisted of 24/7 IV liquids for several weeks, and so much nausea and vomiting that I lost 23 pounds, this pregnancy has been more than rough!  While we are so thankful for the miracle of life that has been growing inside of me for the past 10 months, it has definitely come with its challenges.  I truly consider Emma to be our little miracle baby...she survived so much and fought through it with me.  Severe dehydration and malnutrition did not stop her from growing and fighting for her life.  She is my little fighter and I can't wait to meet her!  It is time for her to come out!

So after much discussion and prayer, we have decided to induce on Friday.  We will go in tomorrow night (sometime between 4pm and 8pm) and start the cervadil.  Our prayer is that the cervadil will be all that is needed to jump start my labor and that I will be able to have another unmedicated labor.  Of course our ultimate goal is to have a healthy baby and mommy and will do whatever it takes to get her here safely.

Tonight we were putting Hannah to bed and I got very emotional knowing that this would most likely be our last night putting Hannah to bed before Emma comes. (Of course that will depend on when they call us tomorrow night to come in).  While I am ready for Emma to arrive (as ready as I'll ever be) and ready to not be pregnant anymore, it is definitely a bittersweet event.  Knowing that our lives are about to change drastically is a bit overwhelming.  And knowing that Hannah will no longer be our "baby" just makes me sad.  I love her so much and struggle to imagine how I will love another baby as much. (Of course I know that this will not be an issue at all, but it's hard to imagine at this point).  Also knowing that I won't be able to give Hannah the undivided attention that she has had since she was born is hard.  (The one and only thing I am thankful for about my hyperemesis experience is that I do think it has prepared Hannah in some ways for not being the focus of my attention.  Being sick 24/7 for so long taught her to be pretty self-sufficient (for a two year old) and she is able to entertain herself very well at this point.)  Change is always difficult for me and I know that the hormones don't help at all.

Tomorrow will be our last day as a family of 3.  I'm hoping that we are able to squeeze in lots of snuggles and make a few memories with our precious baby girl before she becomes the big sister. 

Please pray for us as we begin this next chapter of our lives.  Pray for Emma to be healthy and for my labor to progress just as it should.  Pray for the ability to have an unmedicated delivery and for my recovery process to be easier than it was with Hannah.  Specifically pray that I will not need a catheter and will be able to pee on my own after delivery and that I will not have the huge blood clots that I had last time (scary!).  Pray for my hormones to not be too out of control in the first week or two of coming home.  Pray that Hannah would adjust well to her new role of big sister and that we would do everything we can to make her feel special and included.  We are so thankful for your prayers!

Pregnancy: 39 Weeks 5 Days

I wrote a post every day during my 40th week of pregnancy with Hannah (what can I say, I had a lot of time on my hands!)  Here they are - 39 Weeks 1 Day, 39 Weeks 2 Days, 39 Weeks 3 Days, 39 Weeks 4 Days, 39 Weeks 6 Days

The time has arrived....Emma is coming!  I wanted to be sure to post one last weekly pregnancy post before writing about her eviction. ;-)

Here's what happened this week...

What's going on with the baby right now?
  • It's time Emma!  Your due date has arrived!
What's going on with me?
  • At my appointment today (Wednesday) everything was great...blood pressure, heartbeat, and weight.  I was 1cm, but the midwife was able to make be 2cm (OUCH!).  But my cervix is still thick and just doesn't look like anything is happening.  Induction here we come (more on that in my next post).
  • The painters arrived on Saturday of this past week and finished up on Monday.  What a MESS!  Thankfully they blocked off the rest of the house from their "construction" zone, but there really is no way to keep the sanding dust out of every room of the house.  It gets in the air ducts and is blown everywhere.  UGH!  So, I spent the majority of this week dusting every square inch of the house.  Thankfully my amazing mother in law was here for a day and helped out too.  So nice!
  • Surprisingly we have done nothing to try to naturally induce labor - no spicy foods, no excessive walking, no jumping jacks, no eggplant parmesan, no castor oil, no evening primrose oil...nothing.  I just hate going through all of that for none of it to work and then to be let down and constantly thinking "is this going to do it?"  So we decided to skip all of that and just let nature take it's here we sit!
  • I gained one pound this week, so I am up 31 pounds from my pre-pregnancy weight.
  • Still very minimal swelling, no carpal tunnel and really not too incredibly uncomfortable.  However, the heartburn is still an issue and the nausea returned for the past few days.  Yuck!  Hyperemesis is no joke!
See my next post for more about our scheduled induction.... 

Friday, June 15, 2012

Pregnancy: 39 Weeks

Check out my post from Week 39 with my first pregnancy (Hannah).

Any day now we will become a family of 4!  We are finally ready (well except for one last home renovation project that starts tomorrow!).  We can't wait to meet our sweet baby Emma! 

Here's what's happening this week...

What's going on with the baby right now?
  • She is about 20" long and is just over 7 pounds (of course this is just an estimate).  She is about the size of a small watermelon.
  • ONE WEEK to go!!
What's going on with me?
  • At my appointment this past week (on Tuesday) everything was great.  Blood pressure, weight and Emma's heartbeat were all perfect.  I am still only dilated to 1cm, so nothing exciting to report there.  However, that didn't surprise me because it was the same with Hannah up until I was induced 4 days past my due date. 
  • Amazingly I lost 2 pounds this week!  So that means I am up 30 pounds from my pre-pregnancy weight.  That's 13 pounds less than I was with Hannah at this point. 
  • I am thrilled to say that Emma's room is 95% ready!  YEAH!!  The furniture arrived last weekend and I was so eager to get everything set up that I had most all of it done by Monday.  There are just a few finishing touches we need to do to make it 100% ready, but at this point if she comes, we are ready for her! 
  • My swelling is still very minimal and it looks like carpal tunnel will not be an issue with this pregnancy like it was with Hannah's.
  • Unfortunately the heartburn is still bad and I even had to take Zantac one night to be able to sleep.  However, even if the heartburn is managed, I still can't sleep.  I'm uncomfortable and my mind just won't shut off.  There isn't any one thing I am thinking about but for some reason I get a surge of energy at bedtime, despite being completely exhausted all day long.  Speaking of that, I spent several days this past week in my pjs because I was just so tired!  I assume that is my body's way of preparing for the hard work of labor, so I am trying to rest as much as possible, but that's not easy with a two year old to take of.
  • This coming week is going to be CRAZY!  We have a painter coming tomorrow to paint the foyer, stairs, and upstairs landing.  We have lived here for 5 years now and this is the only area of the house that hasn't been's time!  However, this process will involve lots of sanding (to remove the oil based paint from the trim and doors) and what I imagine to be a huge mess!  I am a bit overwhelmed with the idea of having to dust my entire house again, but at the same time I am excited to get the home renovation projects done.  We'll see what I have to say about the mess in my next post. :-(
  • Next appointment: Wednesday, June 20th (hopefully this will be my last appointment)
Goals for our remaining days before Emma arrives - Buy a present for Hannah (from Emma), pack the hospital bag, continue cleaning the house, and possibly freeze some more meals for after Emma's arrival. 

Monday, June 11, 2012

Nesting To Do List

Nesting has finally kicked in (at least for today), so I wanted to make a list of things I want to get done before Emma's arrival (not baby related things, since I already have a POST about that).  I just know that it will be a long time before I will have a chance to do these things again, so I need to do them now!  Of course, some of these things will need to be done multiple times before Emma's arrival (dusting, vacuuming, toilets, sheets, etc), but I am a cross off junkie, so I had to add them! :-)

- Organize/Clean Master Bath Drawers
- Organize/Clean Master Bath Cabinets
- Clean Mirror, Counter, Sink, Window, Blinds, Light fixture, Pictures on the wall,Scale, and Door in Master Bath
- Clean Toilet and Shower in Master Bath
- Vacuum and Mop floor in Master Bath
- Dust Master Bedroom
- Vacuum Master Bedroom
- Clean Windows and Blinds in Master Bedroom
- Hang curtains in Master Bedroom
- Organize Brian's dresser and closet
- Organize drawers in nightstands in Master Bedroom
- Change Sheets in Master Bedroom
- Put away all the things in the guest bedroom (from the carpet install)
- Vacuum and Mop stairs and upstairs hallway
- Vacuum Hannah's room
- Dust Hannah's room
- Put away everything that doesn't belong in Hannah's room (from the carpet install)
- Organize Hannah's closet
- Change Hannah's sheets
- Organize hallway luggage closet
- Organize/Clean Guest Bath Drawers and Cabinets
- Clean Mirror, Counter, Sink, Window, Blinds, Door, Light fixture, Toilet, Shower, and Tub in Guest Bathroom
- Vacuum and Mop Guest Bathroom
- Clean all of the bath toys
- Vacuum Emma's room
- Vacuum Guest Bedroom
- Dust Guest Bedroom
- Put away all the things in the Dining Room (from the carpet install)
- Dust Dining Room (table, chairs, mirror, windows)
- Vacuum and Mop Dining Room
- Vacuum and Mop Entry Way
- Vacuum Playroom
- Deep clean couch and chair in Playroom
- Dust Playroom (furniture, big toys, windows)
- Vacuum and Mop Family Room
- Dust Family Room (furniture, windows, tv, bookshelves, fireplace)
- Deep clean couch in Family Room
- Vacuum and Mop Wet Bar
- Clean sink, counter, and cabinets in Wet Bar
- Clean under sink cabinet in kitchen (cleaner spilled in one of the baskets)
- Clean cabinet to left of microwave (salt and pepper spilled in there a while ago)
- Use Murphy's Soap on the cabinets around the stove (grease splashes on them)
- Organize recipes
- Clean out freezer in kitchen (bag of frozen peas spilled in the bottom of the drawer)
- Organize Hannah's plate/bowl drawer in kitchen
- Deep clean kitchen (appliances, counters, sink, table, chairs, light fixtures, doors, windows, etc.)
- Vacuum and Mop Kitchen
- Vacuum and Mop Half Bath
- Deep Clean Half Bath (counter, sink, window, blinds, toilet, door, etc.)
- Vacuum and Mop Laundry Room
- Organize cabinets in Laundry Room (move a lot of the extra cleaning supplies to the garage cabinets)
- Clean fridge in Laundry Room
- Deep clean laundry room (window, blinds, washing machine, dryer, sink, rug, etc.)
- Organize garage sale items in the garage (put in big trash bags)
- Organize cabinets in garage (reorganize to store extra paper goods and cleaning supplies)
- Organize/Clean shoe shelf in the garage
- Upload all pictures on the camera (wait until June for this, so it's empty close to Emma's due date)
- Upload all videos on the flip camera
- Clean front door, back door, and door to the garage (inside and out)
- Clean the Pilot, inside and out
- Organize the storage room in the garage

27 Months Old

Hannah Banana,

Mommy has been EXHAUSTED this month and I want to say how sorry I am for that.  I have not been the Mommy that you deserve, but despite my laziness you have been a champ!  You have learned to play independently even more than ever (you've always been so good at that, but have really stepped it up a notch this month) and have been so sweet to mommy this month.  It was obvious that you knew that Mommy just wasn't feeling 100%.  Thank you baby! 

At the beginning of this month you had a pretty nasty cold - a major runny nose which became very raw after just one day of wiping.  It definitely looked painful!  Your sleep was a bit disrupted because of the constant runny nose, but overall you did great.  Speaking of sleep, at the beginning of this month you hit your stride!  You were falling asleep by 8pm every night and waking up around 8:15am every morning.  Marvelous!  You were also taking about an hour nap everyday.  Love!  However, by the end of the month you were back to your inconsistent sleeping patterns.  You were taking a long time to fall asleep again (one night it took 2 hours!) and naps were hit or miss.  When you did nap it was typically 1-1.5 hours (awesome!) but then there were days where you didn't nap at all.  The one thing that did stay consistent was your later wake up time (between 8-8:30am) which I really appreciated this month!  Thankfully even when you didn't sleep during your nap or when it took you forever to fall asleep at night, you were content to just stay in your crib and sing, without any fussing.  Much better than the days where you would scream the whole time.

Some of your cutest/favorite sayings this month were: "Talkie Hannah" (when you wanted us to be the voices for all your LOVE this!), "You're a good Mommy" (after I finished wiping your nose for the 100th time), "How are you?" (then we would ask you how you are and you loved to say "I'm good"), "I love you too" (every time we say we love you), "I have a good day?" (when we are tucking you in at night), "I like you" (at the most random times), "Oh Mommy/Daddy I yuv (love) you" (all the time), "I yuv you so much!", "I'm sawry (sorry)" (you put your head down and have a sad face), and "Hey guys.  What are you talking about?" (with her toys or with us).  Your sentences are very well formed these days and it's amazing what comes out of your mouth.  You are also singing up a storm these days!  You know SO many songs and sing them SO well.  Your pitch is spot on for a toddler and you know the words to well over 15 songs.  I think you have your mommy's talent of being able to learn a song after hearing it just one or two times. :-)

One of our favorite things to do this month (and actually for the last month or two) is going out to breakfast as a family on Saturday morning.  We go to J.Christopher's and you LOVE to have a yogurt parfait, an egg over hard and some of mommy's blueberry pancakes.  Daddy started this tradition with you on your 2nd birthday and you have loved it ever since.  We are trying to do it every Saturday until Emma comes because we know it might be a while before we can start going as a family of 4. 

You are still very excited (seemingly) for Emma's arrival.  At the end of this month we started setting up all of Emma's baby gear (swing, bouncy seat, activity mat, car seat, etc.) and you loved playing with all of it.  Your favorite thing was to put your tiny baby doll into the swing and push her back and forth.  It makes me a little worried for when Emma comes because I'm sure you will want to do the same with her.  I was a little worried that you would be upset that we moved your car seat (you used to be in the middle, but now we moved you over to the side and put Emma's seat in the middle) but it doesn't seem to bother you at all.  Instead you are excited that Emma's seat is next to yours and you keep talking about how you are going to hold her hand.  I'm just hoping that you don't mess with her too much or drop things on her head.  HAHA  When we ask you what you are going to do if Emma is crying in the car you say, "Sing her a song" and then we ask you what song you will sing her and your answer is usually 'The Wheels on the Bus'.  Precious!

Pink is still your favorite color, but I think the obsession is getting slightly less, which I'm happy about. 

We have not had any progress in regards to potty training this month.  You didn't even sit on it once this month.  After last month's pooping incident (when you were extremely afraid after pooping on the potty) you have continued to be afraid of poop.  You refuse to admit when you poop in your diaper and insist that it's just pee pee every time.  You have been constipated all month and I've had to start giving you prunes nearly every day in hopes of getting you more regular.

This month you have started to have some minor tantrums.  I knew these were bound to start at some point, but I was secretly hoping we would skip that stage - HAHA.  One thing that surprisingly works to stop the crying is to tell you that if you are going to cry you need to go to your couch (in your playroom).  You always say, "Ok" in a pitiful voice and go straight to it, put your head down on it and stop crying.  It's amazing!  Breaks my heart, but I do know that ignoring the tantrum is the best solution.

Your favorite foods this month were "yogi" (yogurt), cottage cheese, frozen blueberries, carbs of any kind, cheese, cookies (every time we go to the grocery store), "balls" (kix cereal), mac n' cheese with peas, cheese and spinach quesadillas, daddy's grilled chicken, couscous, edamame, pasta, eggs, almond butter and jelly sandwiches, grilled cheese sandwiches, and freeze dried fruit.

Bedtime prayers are getting more and more precious.  You now start your prayer with "Thank you Jesus" and then name a bunch of people (friends, grandparents, great grandparents), toys, food, or anything else that's on your mind.  Then end with "Amen".  You continue to remind us of things to pray for when we are praying but we are trying to teach you to be a good listener while we are praying.

You officially know all of your colors (with an occasional mistake) and several letters - B, D, E, H, M, and O.

The last few days of this month you have become a bit clingy to Mommy, which I definitely love.  I have a feeling that this is related to Emma's imminent arrival.  With her room starting to come together and all the baby gear being put out I think you are starting to realize that things are going to be changing around here very soon.  I have been cuddling you as much as possible and assuring you of how much I love you.  I am praying that Emma's arrival won't throw you off too much and that you will always know just how much Mommy and Daddy love you!

Other 27 Month Stats:
- You still wear size 2T or 3T clothes.
- You still wear a size 7 or 8 shoe.
- Still wearing size 6 overnight diapers and now wearing size 6 during the day.  However, they are definitely on the big side and we probably need to go back to size 5s during the day.
- You weigh 31.4 pounds, but not sure how tall you are because we didn't measure you this month.

This is your last monthly post before your little sister Emma arrives.  Hard to believe that we will be a family of 4 in just a few short days! (Mommy is due June 22).  These past 27 months have been the best of my life!  You have changed our lives in every way imaginable and we are so thankful for that!  We love you little peanut and you will always have a very special place in our family!

Friday, June 8, 2012

Pregnancy: 38 Weeks

Check out my post from Week 38 with my first pregnancy (Hannah).

Here's what's happening this week...

What's going on with the baby right now?
  • She is about 19.5" long (the length of a leek) and has just about reached her birth weight (somewhere between 6 and 8 pounds).  I am hoping for a smaller baby than last time, but only time will tell.  (Hannah was 8.2)
  • 2 weeks to go!  14 days!!!
What's going on with me?
  • I had a doctor's appointment this week and was 1cm dilated, but my cervix is still very high and long.  The midwife let me know that I have the option of inducing at 39 weeks if we want, however I doubt we will do that.  There are several reasons we won't do that, but the main ones are that Brian's parents will be out of the country until June 18th and the other reason is that I am still undecided about if I will go all natural with this labor, so inducing makes it much more likely that I would need pain medication.
  • I gained 4 pounds this week!  YIKES!  That puts me at +32 pounds from my pre-pregnancy weight.  Hoping that I won't gain much more.  The only thing that makes me feel a little better is that at this point with Hannah I had gained 42 pounds. 
  • Surprisingly I am only getting up one time in the night to pee.  I'm pretty sure it was the same way with Hannah.  I apparently have a very large bladder. :-)
  • While this is technically not about me, it's related.  I wanted to talk about how Hannah is doing with Emma's immanent arrival.  As far as I can tell she is still thrilled!  She is constantly wanting to talk to Emma and show her toys and says, "Emma come out soon".  It's precious.  She hasn't shown any signs of jealousy or anxiety about any of it.  While I am thrilled about this, it also makes me nervous.  Maybe she just doesn't get it at all.  I am constantly telling her how Emma is going to live with us forever and how right now it's just Mommy, Daddy and Hannah but soon it will be Mommy, Daddy, Hannah AND Emma.  I tell her that Emma will have the same Mommy and Daddy as her and that she will have to share her Mommy and Daddy.  She definitely doesn't get that part.  She will often say, "No, that's my Daddy".  I definitely think that sharing Daddy is going to be the hardest part of all of it.
  • We did our maternity photo shoot this past weekend and it definitely was different this time around having Hannah with us.  She decided to not take a nap that afternoon, which made for a very uncooperative two year old.  We will be lucky if we get one good picture out of the whole bunch. 
  • I had a horrible headache all day on Wednesday, which made me a little worried that my blood pressure might be elevated.  So I went to a local pharmacy and tested it.  Thankfully it was perfectly normal.
  • Brian is out of town for a friend's wedding and I have been on my own for the past two days with a toddler and a HUGE belly!  It's been tiring, but we have had fun and I've really enjoyed my time alone with Hannah.  Tomorrow Brian's parents are coming into town (on their way to London for a week!) so it will definitely be nice to have the help! 
  • Emma's furniture will be delivered TOMORROW morning!!  YEAH!  I am so thrilled to finally be able to get her room ready.  Talk about last minute.  Also, Buy Buy Baby has offered us a $150 gift card to compensate us for our trouble.  I think that is very fair and I am pleased with the way the district manager has handled all the problems we have had with this order.  However, I am still holding my breath to see how the delivery and assembly goes tomorrow.  Praying everything is right!
  • I took Hannah to Babies R Us yesterday to pick out a present for Emma (to give her at the hospital).  She didn't really seem to get the whole idea, but we did it anyway and once we picked something out she seemed a little more excited.  Of course she wanted to get something for herself too, but we talked about how special it was for her to pick out something just for Emma.  I also let her know that Emma would be giving her a special present too.  So that made her feel better.  We ended up picking out a lovie for Emma (she needed one more to add to the collection and Hannah loves all of hers so much that I thought this would be perfect).  I really picked it out, but Hannah didn't disagree, so it worked out nicely.  Then we spent about an hour walking around, playing with toys (free entertainment!).  The lovie has been sitting on the kitchen counter since we yesterday (I've really let the house go the last few days that Brian has been out of town) and every time she sees it she says, "Oh Emma, I got you a special prize (surprise).  It's a lovie Emma!"  It's so precious!
  • We put Emma's car seat in our car last weekend and every since, Hannah has been so excited about it!  Every time we get in the car she is sure to point out to Emma that we have her seat in the car (she insists on lifting up my shirt to show Emma).  She talks about how she is going to hold Emma's hand (their seats are side my side, so she will have easy access....could be a bad thing!).  She really is so excited!
  • Swelling was not bad this week at all.  Didn't notice any really.  Still not wearing my wedding rings though.  Also, no carpal tunnel still!  YEAH!
  • Heartburn was brutal this week.  I couldn't sleep many nights because of it and I even had it during the day at random times.  Yuck!
  • Next appointment: Tuesday, June 12th
Goals for this coming week are similar to the last two weeks (can you sense my lack of urgency?) - Buy a present for Hannah (from Emma), pack the hospital bag, deep clean the house, and wash bedding for Emma's room.  So much to do and so little motivation.  It hasn't sunk in that Emma could be here any day!

Saturday, June 2, 2012

My Baby Bucket List - Updated

I got this idea from another blogger - - and loved it, so thought I'd copy! This is a list of things we want/need to get done before baby #2 arrives. 

BABY ITEMS we need to get:
-Bedding set (bumper, 2 sheets, crib skirt, pillow and sham for chair)
-Chair for the nursery and ottoman
-Nightstand, hutch, toddler rails, and conversion kit for full size bed
-Crib Mattress
-1 more sheet for the crib (yellow, grey or white)
-Waterproof mattress pads (2)
-Newborn(1 pack) and Size 1 Diapers (2-3 packs)
-Pottery Barn Chair with her name for our monthly pictures (just like Hannah)
-Possibly some new nursing bras and tanks
-Nipple Cream - All Natural (Personal, I know, but it's a fact of life with nursing!)
-Changing pad covers (2 - yellow, grey or white)
-Personalized Pottery Barn blanket (just like Hannah, but in yellow, grey or white)
-Wall decorations for the nursery
-Curtains for the nursery with built in black out panels (yellow, grey or white)
-Sound machine
-Lamp for the nightstand in the nursery (yellow, grey or white)
-Pottery Barn baskets and liners for the hutch
-CD player for nursery (possibly use Hannah's instead)
-Trash can to use as diaper pail for nursery
-Baby book - start filling it in now!
-Floor Lamp
-Lovies (1 more)
-Mirror for the backseat of the car
-Sensitive baby wipes
-All natural diaper cream
-Nursing pads
-New breast pump or parts (thank you Bubbles for chewing up my old one!)
-Gum cleanser and brush
-Double stroller (suggestions???)
-Aden & Anais Swaddle Blankets
-Coming home outfit for Emma (have Hannah help pick it out)
-Baby gate for Emma's room
-Teething tablets
-Gripe Water, Mylicon Drops, Colic Calm
-Outlet plug covers
-First Year Calendar
-Closet Organizers (dividers)

THINGS TO DO in the nursery:
-Empty room of everything that's currently in there
-Choose paint color and purchase it
-Paint (walls and touch up trim)
-New carpet
-Fix the closet shelving
-New door hardware on door and closets
-Figure out lighting
-Make letters to hang above the crib to spell out baby's name
-Have the nursery furniture delivered and assembled
-Hang curtains
-Hang letters that spell "Emma" above her crib
-Recover the glider with fabric that matches the bedding (getting it upholstered and should be ready in 2-3 weeks)
-Move the internet router from Emma's Room to the Guest Room

-Strip all cloth diapers in hopes of using them with baby #2
-Air out the crib mattress for 28 days before baby's arrival (gets rid of chemicals) - Started on April 10, so it will be ready on May 8! 
-Get the Pottery Barn Blanket monogrammed
-Wash all newborn and 3 month clothing...stain removal with oxi-clean
-Hang and fold washed clothes and put away
-Figure out how to hook up the IP cameras we bought to use as video monitors for the girls' rooms
-Preregister at the hospital
-Stock the freezer with meals for after baby arrives!
-Plan a night or weekend away with Brian before baby comes
-Maternity photo shoot (Sunday, June 3)
-Set up a newborn photo shoot for after baby arrives
-Pack my hospital bag
-Install car seat (wash the cover)
-Set up pack n' play, swing, bouncy seat, activity mat
-Write thank you cards as needed

Hospital Bag Packing List

It's that time again - time to pack the hospital bag!  I feel like I just did this for Hannah's birth.  Here we go again!

During our hospital tour we were told to pack two different bags - one for labor and delivery and then another for recovery. So I have separated my list into those two categories. After I have something packed in my bag, I will cross it off the list.

Labor Bag
- iPad and charger
- Cell phone and charger
- Camera (digital and Flip), charger, cord for uploading pics, and extra batteries
- Baby book (for getting footprints)
- Tennis ball and massager for Brian to use on my back! :)
- My own pillow with a distinguishable pillow case (one I don't care about getting ruined) and one for Brian
- Hard candies (to keep my mouth from being too dry)
- Chapstick
- My own gown for delivery
- Magazines
- Picture ID and Insurance Card
- Snacks for Brian
- Hairbrush and hairties
- Makeup (one can dream, right)
- Deodorant, lotion

Recovery Bag
- Thank you notes (to write for hospital staff and any presents we receive while in the hospital...if we have time)
- Going home outfit for me (something comfy and maternity) and shoes
- Going home outfit for Emma
- Hat for Emma
- Toothbrush and toothpaste (for me and Brian)
- Shampoo, conditioner, soap (all travel size)
- Bathroom stuff for Brian, pjs for Brian, outfits for Brian
- Straightener
- Razor
- Nursing pjs & robe (light weight)
- Socks
- Nursing tank tops and bras (comfy ones for sleeping)
- Nursing pads
- Body pillow
- Receiving blanket for Emma
- Boppy pillow for nursing
- Nipple cream
- Car seat - installed in car!
- Maternity underwear
- Snacks (peanut butter crackers, granola bars, brownies, etc.)
- Empty tote bag (for bringing home all the hospital goodies)

Friday, June 1, 2012

Pregnancy: 37 Weeks (FULL TERM!)

Check out my post from Week 37 with my first pregnancy (Hannah).

We started this week in Florida, visiting Brian's family and enjoying our last few days as a family of three.  We ended it with some major home renovations - wood flooring on the stairs, landing and in the laundry room.  Talk about chaotic!

Here's what's happening this week...

What's going on with the baby right now?
  • Emma is officially full term which means it is safe for her to come at any time.  While the house is definitely not ready, my body is!
  • She is about 19-20" long and weighs about 6.5 pounds
  • She is definitely not moving as much now.  It has been so infrequent that we have actually been pretty nervous at times this week.  But I honestly just think she is out of room in there.
  • 3 weeks to go!
What's going on with me?
  • I had a doctor's appointment this week and everything was good.  Emma is still head down, blood pressure was good, weight was good, and my iron level was higher than it was earlier in my pregnancy (even though I never took the iron supplements that they told me to take).  It's still a tad low (10.9 and they like it be at least 11) but it's close enough.  They also did the group B strep test, which was negative.  It was negative with my first pregnancy as well, so I am happy about that.  Just means I don't have to have the antibiotics during labor.  She also checked my cervix but nothing is happening yet...still closed.
  • I had a crazy dream this week.  You could see Emma's arm and hand through my stomach and her hand was stretching the skin on my belly so much that she was holding onto my finger.  So creepy!  But for some reason everyone in my dream thought it was so cute. 
  • All my maternity shirts are getting too small so I have been forced to buy a few more.  I hated having to spend money on something I know I will only wear for a few more weeks, but whatever.  I found some good deals at Target and bought 2 tshirts, 2 tank tops and 1 pair of shorts.  Should get me through the next couple weeks. 
  • I am up 28 pounds from my pre-pregnancy weight.  Since I didn't weigh myself last week it's hard to say how much I gained this week, but over the last two weeks I gained 5 pounds.  More than I would like, but there really is NO WAY to control it!  Overall I am just happy that I am not as big as I was with Hannah at this point.  I was 11 pounds heavier then I am right now...OH MY!
  • Swelling wasn't bad this week.  However, I am not wearing my wedding rings anymore because they are just uncomfortable.
  • No carpal tunnel, thank you Lord!
  • Heartburn was manageable this week.  Still just using Tums or Rolaids to help the burn.  My favorite ones are the Peppermint Tums.  I was using the fruit flavored Rolaids and they are just nasty!
  • Nausea was manageable this week as well.  However, the construction smells brought back some bad memories (not sure from what) that made me VERY nauseous at the end of the week.  I was trying to remember when I last smelled those odors but can't pinpoint a time during this pregnancy.  The only thing I can think of is when we remodeled our family room during my first pregnancy (while I was also very nauseous).  Crazy what your mind (and nose) can remember.
  • I was exhausted this week.  Not easy when you have a two year old and construction going on in your house!  We had wood flooring installed on our stairs, landing and in the laundry room.  What a mess!  There is now a thin layer of construction dust on every surface in my house and it's stressing me out!  Unfortunately I just don't have the energy to get it all clean.  I am working in very short sessions (5-10 minutes) and doing what I can, but there is just so much to do!  I definitely had a minor breakdown the other day about all there is left to do before Emma's arrival.  There are so many things I want/need to do but just don't have the energy for.  I'm hoping that Brian will help me out this weekend (especially since he will be out of town next weekend!). 
  • Braxton Hicks contractions are definitely more frequent, but nothing consistent and nothing that's actually making me dilate yet.  Just false labor.  Fun!
  • Next Appointment: Tuesday, June 5th (weekly appointments from now until the end)
Goals for this coming week are mostly the same as last week because I didn't finish any of them!  AHHH!  - Buy a present for Hannah (from Emma), install Emma's car seat (which also means we need to clean my car), pack the hospital bag, deep clean the house (even more necessary now!), set up all the baby gear (swing, bouncy seat, etc.), and possibly cook more meals for the freezer.  Still no furniture in Emma's room...this is getting serious!