Sunday, August 18, 2013

Lola's First Baby Doll

Monday, July 15, 2013

Almost 14 Months!

It's been a while since I did an update.  As usual, life has been incredibly busy.  Lola turned a year old on May 20 and then we had her birthday party in Canton on May 25th. A special thank you to everyone who came out to celebrate.  I posted some pictures on Facebook, but I think this one is really cute...

 This look pretty much sums up her attitude toward the cupcake. She just didn't know what to think of it.  After spending some time squishing it around, she finally took some bites.  In all honesty, it was a little underwhelming.  I thought she would just dive right in, but she had to give it some serious inspection first.  The what-in-the-world-is-this-thing attitude was just as funny in its own way and is completely her attitude toward anything and everything.  She's a go-getter, but she loves to inspect and explore.  

A little over two weeks ago, Lola started walking.  She loves it and has even attempted running.  Unfortunately, her little legs can't keep up with the rest of her body and she has a good-sized, bruised lip to prove it.  This past week she started getting really silly and started dancing.  She's a handful, but we have SO MUCH FUN!  There's never really a dull moment around Lola, that's for sure!

I'm not sure who we've told and who we haven't, but we are moving!  We are staying in the Austin area, but are looking for about 3-5 acres.  We have found some houses we like, but nothing that says "home" to us.  I have faith we will find something, although we might have to rent a house for a while until we do because our home is currently under contract.  The option period ends soon, so I suppose it's not 100% yet.  The big issue is getting the foundation repaired, so I hope that doesn't scare away the buyers.  Obviously we are responsible for those repairs either way, so I'm not looking forward to dealing with a 14-month old while that takes place.  Lola just loves to unpack boxes that have been packed up.  She always finds something to get into and rearrange it how she sees fit :)

All is well over here, or the way I see it, as well as it could be.  Please keep our family in your prayers.  The home selling and buying process has been a little stressful.  I'm not sure how often we'll get "back home" to visit until all of this is complete.  It takes a lot of energy to pack, watch Lola and keep the house "show ready".  When the weekend rolls around, all we want to do is sleep!  Hopefully the Fall will bring us a renewed sense of energy and a new home!

Monday, May 20, 2013

Lola's Birth Story

Saturday, May 19, 2012
Since Bo was participating in a TEXSAR training most of the day, I was left to my own devices. I had breakfast at Kerbey Lane (In case you’re wondering I had French toast and Migas topped with queso aka the Paris Texas Platter), walked about a mile and a half with Brodie and then puttered about for the rest of the day.  After visiting with Bo after he got home, I turned in around 10:30 PM.  I had just fallen asleep when I felt a small amount of fluid - I didn’t think I peed - but I’ve heard it’s totally normal at this point for that to happen so I blamed the fluid on a faulty bladder and tried to go back to sleep.  I just couldn’t convince myself of the possibility that my water had broken. That, and everything I had read or heard suggested that it was rare for your membranes to rupture prior to labor starting (the What to Expect website says less than 15%).  So I did my best to go back to sleep – being slightly anxious made it difficult to get into a deep sleep.

Sunday, May 20, 2012
At 1AM I awoke again to another small gush of fluid. At this point, I knew I wasn’t peeing in my sleep, so I was starting to convince myself that my water had indeed broken. Now, sleep was the last thing on my mind. I suddenly remembered that I hadn’t gotten the pediatrician forms scanned and e-mailed back to them, so I decided I would work on that because, although nothing else was happening, sleep wasn’t going to happen.

Finally around 1:30, after much debate, I decided to wake Bo up “just in case”.  I told him something to the effect of, “I’m not sure, but I think my water broke. Nothing else has happened, but I decided to go ahead and work on the pediatrician forms. I need you to help me get this last one printed out.”  Shortly after I got Bo up, I started feeling some menstrual-like cramps and probably half an hour later I noticed the “bloody show”. At that point, I knew labor was imminent. I think I even showed Bo, just to make sure - haha!

Back in the office, we were still waiting  for the same form to print out – it was apparently a ridiculously large file size (the reason it was taking me days to print them out) – so I
decided to take a shower as the “cramps” were becoming more rhythmic and coming in
waves. The warm water felt amazing. The contractions weren’t painful at this point,
just uncomfortable, and I found myself swaying side-to-side and vocalizing this low
“oooo” sound. I’m not sure why I ended up doing that, but it helped me focus and relax.
After I got out of the shower, Bo decided we needed to try and sleep so we could have
plenty of energy for the next day. I laid down and not even 5 minutes later I had a
contraction that definitely was not like the others I had been having. I told him that laying down was not a possibility – it hurt too much.

My plan all along was to labor in our office for as long as possible. It’s a nice calming green color and not an area that Brodie frequents very often.  While I stretched out over the labor ball, Bo put a heated rice pack on my lower back and then applied some counter pressure. Both of those techniques seemed to stop the discomfort. I want to say it was at this point I also requested some applesauce. The Bradley classes emphasized how important it was to have some easily digestible snacks during early labor, and well, I was also hungry, so Bo spoon-fed me applesauce in between contractions. From this point, I began giving Bo some “honey-dos” because I knew we weren’t as prepared as I had intended to be. After all, we were a week early (according to “our” due date) and I had some how anticipated being overdue. So in between contractions I had him feeding and watering the chickens and rabbit, throwing extra clothes into the suitcase (he did manage to not pack me any shirts!), getting Brodie ready to be left, etc.  Basically, I would have him push on my lower back and then when the contraction passed I’d give him something else to do.  When the contraction started again, I’d yell for him.  This went on for at least an hour or more.
Around 3:30AM, the contractions were getting harder, and increasingly more difficult to talk through. Bo decided to call the doctor. Since I had only been laboring for two hours,
she encouraged us to stay at home a few more hours, if we could. Not wanting to
spend several hours laboring at the hospital, we decided to stay at home. Hindsight tells me we probably should have left at this point. The contractions only got harder after we called. Then the nausea started and I suddenly ran to the bathroom - yep, there went the applesauce I was so eager to eat just an hour or so earlier.  

While I was in the bathroom, the shakes started up. It wasn’t until much, much later (like days later) that I realized I was in transition at this point. I’m not sure why I didn’t
realize that during the moment, but I think everything was just happening too quickly
for me to process anything. I don’t remember much after this point. I do know that I
returned to the office and the contractions were so bad that I thought to myself, “There’s
no way I can do this for 10 hours without an epidural, there’s just no way.” I believe they
were double-peaking at that point and I was strongly considering asking Bo to call the
doctor back.

The pain got so bad that I ended up in the dining room. I think I was looking for
Bo. He was probably doing something I had asked him to do earlier. I remember telling
him, that I felt like I needed to go to the bathroom. “I feel like I need to poop, but I know I don’t need to.” I think he asked me if we needed to go to the hospital, and I vaguely
remember telling him maybe. I believe this is when he told me that he wasn’t putting anything else in the suitcases and the only thing he would do was put the suitcases in the car.

By the time he came back inside I knew it - I was starting to push. Bo looked scared and asked if we needed to stay at home. My first thought was, “Please don’t call 9-1-1, that would be so embarrassing!” I definitely was more willing to risk having a baby on the side of the road, than to be wheeled across my lawn for all of my neighbors to see. So we decided to take a chance and drive the 20 minutes to the hospital.

Let me say that trying not to push while in the car wasn’t easy. I was able to relax
enough at every other contraction to not push. A couple of weeks earlier, we had put Lola’s carseat into our car.  It’s huge in our little car, but I was so worn out that I would rest my head between it and my seat between contractions. Bo was doing his best to check on me and drive safely (and speedily, I might add). The sweat was beading up on my forehead and then Bo would occasionally stroke the top of my head. I was really scared we were going to have her in the car, on the side of Mopac, at 5:00 in the morning.
We got to the hospital around 5:30 AM. Of course the L&D doors are locked at that time.
So, we had to “buzz in” which made Bo mad because he thought they would be waiting on us since we called the doctor before leaving the house. I imagine that 30 seconds was a long 30 seconds for Bo. When the doors opened, the lobby wasn’t just empty - it was closed.  Bo started for the huge staircase, and even though I had never used the elevators, my brain seemed to know where the were.  There is no amount of money you can have paid me to walk up those stairs.

Once we got up to L&D, Bo said, “My wife is in labor” and no one seemed too concerned about it. For some reason a nurse brought over a wheelchair for me and then took forever trying to put the foot rests down. I’ve never seen someone move so slow – I’m talking about the ancient nurse, not the woman in labor. They took me to one of the triage rooms to check my progress and of course I was at a 10 and ready to go – again something I was confident was happening, but I’m just the lady having the baby. Then the nurse tells me that they are going to move me to another room to have the baby.  Seriously? Why on earth didn’t we go there first?! I begged them not to move me because I didn’t want to sit in the wheelchair again - it hurt like crazy. The nurse sweetly assured me that they were just going to move me to a bed with wheels and then wheel me over there. Before being moved over, a male doctor popped in.  I’m thinking my doctor isn’t male and then Bo says, “Wrong Dr. Miller” to which he responded, “No I was just seeing if you needed any help.”  I was happy he wasn’t sticking around because I decided, at that point, that I wasn’t going to have the baby.  Dr. Miller walked in about 30 seconds later.  I don’t remember the ride over, but I think it was just down the hallway.

I swear there were something like 50 people in the room (Bo said there were maybe 5). I guess because we came in so quickly they didn’t have time to prep anything - it was also shift change. While one nurse was putting a various assortment of bracelets on me, another was prepping me for the saline-lock in case I needed an IV. I begged her not to place it. Dr. Miller said, “We talked about this”. I really thought I could get out of it, but like they had already told me, it was non-negotiable. At least I tried.

Bo was on my right side and a really awesome nurse was on my left. I think we know
where Dr. Miller was. Although the Bradley Class had taught us various birthing
positions, I don’t think any of them came to our minds. We were both still in shock. Luckily the nurse on my left was reminding me to keep my chin tucked and helping me stay in a good position. She was a life-saver. In between pushes, I remember joking about the birth plan being in the car. I spent several hours working on it and all Dr. Miller needed to know was if we were delaying the cord clamping, giving the Vitamin K shot, eye drops and Hep B vaccination. Why on earth I was thinking about the birth plan at that moment is beyond me. As I was starting to get really tired, Dr. Miller encouraged me with “just a couple more pushes and she’ll be here”. As she was making her way out (y’know the ring of fire?), Dr. Miller said, "You can reach down, if you'd like to feel your baby's head". It was the most amazing and weirdest feeling in the world. To this day, if I rub Lola’s head, it takes me back to that moment.

Thirty-three minutes after we arrived at the hospital Lola was born. They placed her on
my lower abdomen (her cord wasn’t long enough to be placed any higher) and I remember holding her there why she cried and we waited for the cord to stop pulsating. I was so relieved that we were done with the birth. I was so proud of myself and Bo. I couldn’t believe that I was staring at MY baby.

Our First Family Picture

Monday, January 28, 2013

Winter? Spring?

I can't tell you all how many times I've written this post (in my head, of course).  Every day I think I'll finally get around to it, but here we are - it's almost February! Life has been insanely busy. 

A week before Christmas eve, Lola sat up.  On Christmas eve, she started crawling.  The next week she started babbling (finally!) and also started pulling on things. We haven't slowed down since.  I knew once she could move around she'd be happier - I was right.  She's definitely not as fussy as she used to be...unless you're keeping her from crawling.  She keeps me SO busy! We are constantly moving and there's always something to get into.  I'm loving it though.  I feel like we're finally having some fun!

She's currently going through another growth/developmental spurt.  Over the past week or so, she's been waking up in the middle of the night ready to play.  She crawls and rolls wildly about in her sleep.  One night she was at the foot of the bed, standing up and bouncing! Bo has been a huge help sometimes taking her for me, but mostly not giving me too hard of a time for being snippy from exhaustion.  She's otherwise been sleeping relatively well. *knocks on wood*  I'm wondering though if she's hit a little sleep regression, as a book I'm reading suggested it was normal at this age (8 months already!).  She was down to two naps, but yesterday she took three and today her naps have been earlier than normal - and she's already on her second nap so I guess it's possible she could squeeze a late afternoon nap in.

Lola has been eating some solids.  She's tried sweet potato, regular potato, a bit of my oatmeal, green beans, broccoli, chicken, turkey, beef, banana and avocado.  I'm sure I've forgotten something.  We have been going with the Baby Led Weaning concept and it has suited us well.  Lola is incredibly independent, so I doubt she would want to be spoon-fed anyway.  She loves finger foods and feeding herself.  She's even started to want little sips of water.  Bo and I have enjoyed watching her grow up and hit her milestones.  Lola is incredibly curious and our lack of baby proofing has made our house perfect for her to explore all sorts of things.  We really need to baby proof - haha.

If you want to stay more up-to-date, Facebook is probably your best bet.  My page is pretty much dedicated to all things Lola, since we hang out all day together.  I also have Instagram and Twitter, both of which are confusing to me. 

With Spring just around the corner (or is it here already?!), I hope to post some gardening related pictures soon.  Bo built us a garden fence and it looks so nice.  I also planted a strawberry patch and hope to plant some veggie seeds soon.  If not, I'm looking forward to buying some transplants.  Really I just want to grow something knowing that Brodie and the chickens won't destroy it!

Monday, October 29, 2012

Five Months!

--> 10/24/2012

Dear Lola,

You turned five months old this past Saturday.  I have to say that months four – five were my favorite so far.  You started out month four by grabbing things.  Your feet, my glass at meal time, anything and everything.  We went to Matagorda Bay about a month ago.  You cried off and on the whole way up and back.  The city itself wasn’t that nice.  I was hoping to get some cute beach pictures of you while we were there.  Two things prevented that: 1) I left your beach clothes, sunglasses, cute sun hat and sunscreen at home and 2) The beach was gross.  However, the point of the trip was to get a change of scenery so it served its purpose.  The locals were nice and we saw a guy catch a really big fish off the pier. 

Almost two weeks ago you were baptized.  This was such a special time for our family.  I look forward to sharing our faith with you and your baptism was a beautiful picture of what I hope is to come.  I should also mention that Will Dietrich, who is about 7 months older than you are, grabbed your hand and held it.  He’s a brave man doing that in front of your dad.  ;)

This past week you have most definitely started teething.  There’s no mistaking it.  You’ve been drooling quite a bit for a while now, but it’s obvious that you’re uncomfortable.  You make chewing motions (it looks like a fish) and moan all day.  Occasionally you pull at your ear and what really gets to me is when you cradle your jaw in that tiny little hand of yours.  We got you one of those amber teething necklaces, but I can’t tell if it’s helping.  During the day, you seem the same, but you are sleeping better at night – so it’s a toss up.  I spend a large portion of the day trying to distract you.  We go to the grocery store, the thrift store, Target and walking around the block.  The ErgoBaby has been a lifesaver – finally you enjoy baby wearing!  You’re still not a huge fan of the stroller (or car seat), but we managed two 1.5 mile walks this week in it. 

Despite your pain, you still give the sweetest smiles.  You haven’t been the social butterfly you once were, but you will occasionally smile at a stranger.  People love you.  Twice this week I was told, “You are lucky” and “You are blessed!”  A sweet Hispanic lady said, “Que Hermosa!” today.  I agree, you are beautiful!

You haven’t started crawling yet. I watch and wait in anticipation every day.  When you’re on the bed you try to crawl, but for some reason, don’t do it when you’re on the floor.  So I let you scooch down to one end of the bed, then I turn you around.  You’re incredibly vocal as well.  I didn’t think you could get any louder or chattier, but I was wrong.  You’re also about to go to the next sized prefold diaper.  Your dad and I were just talking about how it looked like you were longer – I guess you had a little growth spurt. 

In about a month or so, you’ll be ready for solids.  So far, you’ve only had breast milk.  I’m so proud of that!  Once you start sitting up, I’ll be comfortable starting solid foods.  I do believe you’ll be excited about that.  We keep you with us during meals and there are times you seem interested in what we’re doing.  I don’t really anticipate you eating much, but I think you’ll have fun playing with the food at the very least!



Friday, September 14, 2012

17 Weeks

I'm not sure, but I think Lola will be 17 weeks on Sunday.  I can't tell you how many times I've counted, but I can't remember.  Sleep deprivation kills my memory. 

I'm not sure if we've hit THE sleep regression, but we've certainly hit one.  The past 3 weeks have been pretty rough, I don't think I've felt so badly since that first month.  So desperately tired (and whiney), so isolated, so frustrated.  I've started laying down with her during nap times; otherwise, she doesn't make it through the first sleep cycle (which is about 45 minutes).  I don't really enjoy laying there for two hours at a time, but she's a terror if she doesn't get decent sleep.  I don't feel like we have much of a routine yet, but it's not because we haven't tried.  Whatever your beliefs are on co-sleeping (I don't need, nor want opinions) it has saved much of our sanity.  Some nights are still not as great (she likes to kick a lot), but she just doesn't sleep well in the crib sometimes.  We've been pretty consistent with bedtime, but the waking up seems to fluctuate the most.  I'm not sure if that's normal.

She's quite the chatty patty these days and we've decided she has the sweetest voice.  She loves to laugh and we love to make her laugh.  As much as she hated tummy time in the past, she's been rolling onto her tummy a lot lately.  She's trying to crawl, but she's still lacking some strength and coordination.  She gets so upset when she realizes she's not going anywhere.   I can honestly say we're having a ton of fun watching her grow and learn new things.  She loves her daddy's beard.  Bo has learned that he is going to need to keep it fairly trim because Lola enjoys grabbing it with both hands.  She still hates the car seat, but surprisingly tolerated it a little today.  I mostly carry her around when I'm at the store.  I've noticed that people really like babies and sometimes it catches me off-guard.  "Oh my God, she's so beautiful" "Your baby is so cute!" "AAAAH, BABY!", etc.  The weirdest was this lady who was walking towards us in the parking lot (about 20 ft. away) and was baby talking very loudly at us.  I didn't run away, but I walked as quickly as I could.  I'm not sure how I would have reacted otherwise. 

I'm still dairy-free.  Her face cleared up and then lately it's breaking out again.  Luckily we see the actual doctor next week.  Up until now, we could only get in to see the nurse practitioners. We have been going out to eat a lot, so I'm wondering if we have some cross-contamination issues (I really don't want it to be another allergen).  I really should try and figure that out though, but it's so hard when we're so tired, you know?  Bo has been incredibly supportive, even through the last two weeks when he had to work a lot (he even had to work Labor day weekend and Labor day unexpectedly).  He helps out so much and certainly doesn't complain at my lack of housework.  I'll have plenty of time to worry about dusting...some other day :)

I'll try to post a picture soon.  I've not been very good at getting posed pictures, but I really want to get a 4 Month picture soon.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Three Months!

Lola will be three months old on Monday.  It's almost hard to believe.  I feel like time has stood still, but at the same time gone by so quickly.  I guess that's the sleep deprivation talking because that shouldn't make sense.  It truly is amazing how much she has changed.  Those first few weeks were so difficult, I never could have imagined actually having fun with Lola.  We still have tough days, but she just keeps getting cuter and sweeter with each day it seems.

The past week and a half have been pretty rough.  I think she has been going through the three-month growth spurt.  She went from sleeping in two four hour chunks to one night waking up every hour to then waking every 2-3 hours.  The last couple of nights she's slept around 5 hours and then woken up every 2-3 hours.  So I have to say that sleep is getting better!  The past few days she's even napped, although sometimes it's only 30 minutes.  Since I'm not used to her napping, I don't know what to do with myself.  I either rush around and fold some laundry or just sit and do nothing.  It feels nice to have a quiet break every now and then.

Since the end of this growth spurt, Lola has been trying to sit up or something.  It started with what looked like she was straining to pull her head forward, so I grabbed her hands and helped her pull up into a sitting position.  She was really wobbly headed at first (I call it jello neck), but over the course of a few days she's gotten steadier and steadier.  She has rolled over from back to tummy three times now and can do little mini-pushups.  She tries her darnedest to crawl, but it's not happening for her.  She scooches well on her back.  I'm actually a little nervous about what we're going to do when she does start crawling.  She's going to be all over the place.  We should probably start child-proofing pretty soon...

Lastly, she LOVES to coo.  She started around 6 weeks with the "gu gu gu" sounds and she's just added more along the way.  When she's particularly chatty - we'll "converse" with whatever sounds she's making.  Last weekend we got her some soft blocks that have different patterns, pictures, fabric textures and colors on them.  Her favorite seems to be the cat one because as soon as she sees it she starts cooing at it.  Too bad Dad hates cats.  I've also heard a few loud squeals lately. 

Some of you know that I did a dairy-free trial.  Well in the midst of her horrible three month fussiness I caved and ate some cheese.  I had been dairy-free for 2 and a half weeks at that point.  I had convinced myself that it wasn't working and was unnecessarily burdensome.  Well four days later of adding dairy back in my diet and her face is starting to get much redder (eczema?) and she's started spitting up milk again.  Soooo, I guess I'm going to cut the dairy again.  I ate some mac and cheese this evening for a final goodbye.  I'm not sure how long I'll have to do it, but I have a feeling the holidays are going to be less fun this year.  Is pumpkin pie dairy-free?  I miss cheese.  And butter. 

I'll leave you with a funny picture.  I guess you could consider it an out-take of sorts, I was trying to get a picture of her and she just jumped up for some reason.  It's not the best photo by any means, but it shows me how happy she is :)

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