Wednesday, November 13, 2013

To catch you up....

     Again, it has been way too long! So much has happened and I, as a failed blogger, haven't written a single post about any of it.

    When I was about 34 weeks along, Joel stopped moving one day. I drank some water and he failed his kick counts (were you count every movement for 2 hours until you reach ten. Something he usually hit in less than 10 minutes.) So, scared and praying, me and Aaron headed to the hospital for me to be hooked up to monitors.

    After scaring us by taking a few extra seconds to find Joel's heartbeat, we learned he had moved to a weird position and was moving just fine, but for some reason I couldn't feel it. His heart rate was steady and they wanted to watch it for awhile just to make sure. While they did, they found a problem on the monitors. My heart rate was HIGH. And it was staying high. They took a urine and blood sample and found things wrong with both, so I was sent home with a nice big jug for a 24 hour urine test.
    For those who have never done this, it is just what it sounds like. For a full 24 hours, every bit of pee had to go into this big jug and kept in my fridge. Fun to do in the middle of the night.

      To spare anyone reading this all the boring details, I was monitored closely (twice a week appointments hooked to machines) for the next few weeks. My blood pressure wasn't getting better and my doctor was hopeful I would go into labor on my own as soon as I hit term. But at 38 weeks my blood pressure spiked a bit more and all my lab results agreed that I was right on the verge of being dangerously pre-eclamptic. (Is that a word? Well, either way, I was developing pre eclampsia.) So my doctor scheduled an induction for the night of November 5th.

    God and Joel had other plans and set out to let us know that no plan of ours means anything to the world. Monday, November 4th, I was shopping with my mom and my water... sprung a leak. I headed to my doctor only to be told my blood pressure was too high, and whether or not I was in labor already, it was time to get that baby out of there. Labor and delivery where an adventure in themselves and really deserve their own post. For now I'll say, the entire thing followed the theme of throwing plans out the window and being completely out of control.

Friday, September 20, 2013

A shower and some more 3d

A few weeks ago I had my baby shower. I'm not a baby shower expert, but I thought mine was pretty darn impressive!

My step-mom Lisa threw our baby shower and she went all out.

     I adored it. So much that I brought most of the decorations home to put up. (Sigh. Never happened. :(  Though that welcome banner WILL be put up when Joel is born.)

          So many awesome people came and gave Joel some awesome gifts. I can't wait until he is here to use everything and thank everyone himself.

          But until he is here, I thought I would share some pictures of our 3rd and last 3d ultrasound.
(Yes, we did another one. We couldn't help it! And boy has he filled out since the last one.) This one was done at 32 weeks. We watched Joel chew and suck on his umbilical cord, grab at it and put it in his mouth with his hands (I was impressed!), smile, glare, pout, stick his tongue out, and taste the foods I had eaten before the scan. I think he is pretty darned cute myself.

Smiling big

Angry boy

Yes, that's my son. I can't get enough of him. I imagine he'll look quite a bit like these pictures but I still can't QUITE channel the images into a real baby in my mind.

So now, with the shower and the 3d scan out of the way, all there is left for us to do is wait for our chunky little man to make his appearance.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

A letter to the womb

Dear Tenant...

I'll start by saying, I'm sorry for poking you so often the past 8 months. I try to make up for it by sitting and laying in the most uncomfortable positions possible any time you stretch out, I bet it's getting pretty cramped in there and I want you to be comfortable. Your dad would say, "He's running out of womb."

In a few short weeks you'll be here in our arms, and I miss you already. But after having you all to myself for so long, I guess it is only fair for me to share you with the world. I know your dad just can't wait to get his chance to hold you. And whether we're ready or not, the time for that is just around the corner. My goal for the past 8 months has been your safe arrival, and I pray that I've given you everything you will need to enter the world healthy and strong.

The world is a big and scary place, and your first day in it won't be a picnic for either of us. I have to remind myself that besides our voices, everything will be new for you. You'll probably feel overwhelmed. If things are too much, just close your eyes and listen to me and your dad. We'll be right there, and we'll carry you through the new experiences.

I've learned so much from you already. Everything you do amazes me. I've really learned about life and living since you came along, and I know you have as much left to teach me as I have to teach you. I hope I teach you the right lessons. And I know you'll have alot of lessons you have to learn on your own. But I'll be right here to support you as much as I can through them all.

I know it sounds like alot, so relax and enjoy the next few weeks and I will keep giving you everything you need.

Love from the outside world,


      P.s., If you could stay out of my ribs for the next few weeks, I would really appreciate it.

Friday, August 30, 2013

Cloth diaper starter stash

Prefolds, covers, and snappis, with 2 newborn Bum Genius all in ones

     I've always known I wanted to use cloth diapers. Long before I got pregnant I stumbled upon cloth diaper websites and was amazed at the different types.
Pockets, which you stuff with absorbent inserts yourself. They are waterproof and great if you want to control how absorbent they are.
All in ones, which are the ENTIRE diaper! Absorbent inside, waterproof cover attached.
Prefolds, which you fold over the baby or use as an insert and couple with a nice cute waterproof cover.
Fitteds, which are a diaper that is ALL absorbent, and are paired with a cover to make them water proof.

    When we found out I was pregnant one of the first decisions made was about diapering. I approached Aaron hesitantly, fully prepared to sway him with information on long term pricing, resell value, health benefits. In the end I needed nothing more than the statement
"Aaron, I want to use cloth diapers."

    That was all it took, and he agreed. At the time I think his reasoning was more based on his trust in me as what he calls a baby expert. (I am, in my own opinion, by no means a baby expert.) The more I've learned about them the more I have exposed him to, slowly to try not to overwhelm him (boy can cloth diapers be overwhelming!)

A green thirsties fitted, two BG all in ones, and a thirsties cover.
Two Lil Joeys, and a Thirsties cover.

      As I've been building my stash my view has shifted a few times. At first I was COMPLETELY overwhelmed, determined to have the PERFECT cloth diaper stash before Joel was born. I was horrified. What if I forgot something? What if I had too few of something? What kind of mom would I be?

    I realize now, after asking many people and reading many blogs about it, that I need not worry. I have been slowly building our diaper stash, but I think I am done buying until Joel is born. We will have a few packs of disposable diapers, just in case I did miss anything. But I feel pretty prepared. And really, if I did forget to get enough of something or forgot something completely, there will be plenty of time to realize this and buy what is needed after Joel is born. And as every baby and family is different, I think what I have bought will be perfect for showing us what works best for him, what we like best, and what we could leave out of our stash completely.

   I have some all in ones (AIO), some fitteds for nighttime use, some covers to put over diapers that aren't already waterproof. And I will of course be reviewing EVERYTHING I use. And just in case any cloth diaper expert stumbles upon this and wants to offer my some advice (or someone just curious, as I am, about what other people use as a starter stash), here is my complete list of my stash!

2 newborn Bum Genius AIOs
5 Thirsties Duo Wrap Covers
21 prefolds in a mixture of brands, all about the size of preemie Bummis prefolds
17 prefolds which are about the size of Grovia bamboo prefolds size 2 or Osocozy prefolds, size 1.
2 large wet bags and 2 smaller, diaper bag sized wetbags for on the go.
 2 Best Bottom covers
1 Thirsties Duo Diaper
A 2 pack of thirsties hemp inserts
6 best bottom stay dry inserts, 3 overnight inserts
2 Lil Joeys
2 Thirsties Fitted diapers

     Many of these diapers fit babies for a large majority of time (some are 8-35 pounds!) The prefolds can even be used as inserts once the baby is too large to have them folded around him. I will probably do many more blog posts about cloth diapers. I am obsessed with them (they are an easy addiction to fall into) and I love talking about them. I made the majority of my stash prefolds and covers because they can be washed by hand.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Growing Joel, Part 2

The last time I posted about growing Joel, I was about 17 weeks along. And boy was I excited about the "HUGE baby bump" I thought I had. Since then 12 weeks have passed and I can now look back at everything before 23 weeks and smile at that tiny stomach I proudly thought was so big back then.

19 weeks

 28 Weeks
      We are already one happy little family. At least, I like to think that Joel is happy in there.
It's hard to me to believe there are only 8-11 of my weekly pictures left before he makes his entrance. I just can't wait to greet my little man in person.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Preparing for the baby

I recently found myself 7 months pregnant.

I'd like to know how the heck this happened? Where was my warning!? I am 28 weeks along, expecting a baby anywhere from 9-12 weeks.
In my apartment.
Depending on me.
Expecting me to know what I'm doing.
And all my years of babysitting and nannying have NOT prepared me for a 24/7 gig.
When do I pack the hospital bag? The diaper bag? Why isn't this common knowledge?!

I thought I was preparing pretty well for the little man. But now I wonder... is it really so important to have his name up? Will he be able to read it?

   Will he appreciate the room buddies I put up around his crib and changing table? I imagine he'll be more at ease with two big octopi watching over him all the time.

   Will he understand the HOURS that went into picking out just the right cloth diapers to go on his cute little tush? (You can't just slap ANY diaper on a tushy as cute as Joel's. He needs the CUTEST ones! More on the choice to cloth diaper later on.)

Please ignore the smiling dog and mess on the floor. Men and their shoes... Sigh.

      I know he'll one day be able to appreciate the second 3d ultrasound we had.

     In his room I have his closet organizer with his clothes hanging in order of size. I have his coming home outfit from Grammy (my mom), his toasting outfit that Aaron bought him, his first night home's pjs from his Grandma (Aaron's mom), and his first "out on the town" outfit from me.
   We have some onsies with short and long sleeves and random outfits and pjs. But the problem lies in me.
    I'm a LIST person. I need a list! Do I have enough footy pjs? How would i know this without marking them off a LIST?!
   Do we have enough hooded baby towels? How would I know!? I DON'T HAVE A LIST!
   Did I get enough crib sheets for his toxin-free, organically grown and made crib and mattress? 

     Being set with my cloth diapers was easy. There are lists all over the internet and many support groups (Yes, Cloth diaper support groups) online to run what I have by, and be told what I need. 
    I wrote down my list and have had a wonderful guideline to stock up on my cloth diaper stash for the first few months of Joel's life. My baby's butt will be fine. 

      But how on earth will I survive as a mom if I don't have enough soft fuzzy blankets for him?