Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Kid Stuff

Ryleigh is three years old and Kellan is 8 weeks today! Time is a crazy bandit, as I really do feel like I was just a brand new mama to miss Ryleigh. Here are some observations about round two of baby rearing. 
I have almost non-existent anxiety. With Ryleigh, I never realized how much anxiety i really had until it went away. It probably wasn't normal but I thought it was just part of motherhood. My mind would race at night at all the possible horrific things that could happen to my precious baby. She slept in our room for way longer than she should have because "someone could come steal her in the night", or "she could choke or stop breathing and I won't hear her", or even "the BIG ONE can happen and what if I can't get to her!" These thoughts would seriously plague my mind in the wee hours of the night. Never during the day.  During the day I realized I was a crazy  person for having those thoughts, but at night they would creep back in and hold me hostage. Eventually, my need for a full night's sleep outweighed my paranoia, and Ryleigh moved into her own room and I returned to a rational, logical person. Of course, I still have thoughts of things that can happen (don't all parents), but I'm really good at just not letting my mind go there. It's interesting, because when pregnant with Ryleigh, I was so laid back and nonchalant about everything. Never nervous before an ultrasound, and had a very "whatever happens, happens" kind of attitude. But when she was born, I was so overwhelmed by love and fear of something going wrong. 
When Mr Man came along, I was much more apprehensive and nervous about pregnancy. We told family and friends right away, but I found myself always saying "it's still early, so we'll see" anytime my pregancy got brought up. Probably because after experiencing a child, I knew exactly what i would be missing out on should anything go wrong. I think I had also seen so much of what can go wrong in early pregnancy by this point that I felt like it was just so common, and what made me any different than any of my friends who had experienced loss. I was nervous before every appointment and this lasted up until the end. Once Kellan was born, though, all my fears melted away and I was able to truly enjoy having a sweet new baby. John and I both had a confidence now that we were seasoned parentals. It has been so great! We all sleep soundly (in between feedings of course), and there's just a general sense of peace in my mind. This little guy has just fit right into our family like he has always been a part of it. I feel so blessed by these two little lives. 

Monday, March 9, 2015

Kellan Michael

Oh hello long forsaken blog! A couple years and a new baby later, it's probably time for an update. I spent both pregnancies obsessed with reading other people's birth stories. It would excite me for what was to come, and I would imagine what my story would be. I don't know that I plan to keep up with this blog, but I loved going back and reading details of Ryleigh's birth, so I thought I'd document Kellan's as well as it was amazingly perfect and I don't want to forget it. 

It really all began in January of last year. John and I started causally debating another child, decided we should give Ryleigh a sibling, but didn't have any official timeline. In April, we decided to go for it. In May, I got the double lines, and it was official-we were doing this again! I waited with bated breath for the awful nausea to set in. Week 4 came and went and I felt great. Week five hit, and there it was in all its miserable glory. Like my pregnancy with Ryleigh, this continued well into my 21st week before subsiding. Pretty much the main reason we will be a two kid family. I really don't enjoy those first 20 weeks of pregnancy. Anyway, despite feeling sick nonstop, the pregnancy was picture perfect. In July, at our NT scan, we got the happy news that we were expecting a little boy. I could have sworn it was a girl based on how I felt, but was beginning to have a sneaking suspicion it was a boy based on how hungry I was all the time, despite feeling nauseas. It was weird. My due date was Jan 28th, and we all kind of assumed he would arrive early to mid January. Before we knew it, mid January came and went. At my 39 week appointment, I was not dilated at all, much to my disappointment. At my 40 week appointment, just two days before my due date, I was still not dilated, but the doc was able to perform a membrane sweep in the hopes to get things moving. He told me I wasn't favorable enough for an induction at that point, instructed me to make my 41 week appointment but doubted I would make it to the next week. At this point, I was trying everything to get the baby out, even though I knew it was all silly and probably nonsense. When I look back and think of all the ridiculous stuff I made my husband do I laugh. Despite the yoga ball bouncing, walks, squats, walking with one foot on a curb and one foot off-I must have looked like a mad woman, spicy food eating, reflexology foot massages, nasty Olive Garden dining,  raspberry tea, evening primrose oil, clary sage, and gosh there's more, there was no movement. All the wondering and thinking "ok this could be it" at every cramp and twinge was pretty exhausting. We were all on high alert. On Super Bowl Sunday, 4 days past my due date, I started having some good contractions that felt different. I was on my feet all day, as we hosted a small get together at our house. I opted to do all the cooking and cleaning that day in hopes it would get things going. I went to bed that night thinking it could be going down, but woke up in the morning, still very much pregnant and everything I had been feeling the day before was gone. I had my 41 week appt that day and knew my induction date would be set for the next day or two since my doc doesn't let his patients go past 41 weeks. While an induction wasn't initially my favorite idea, I began looking at the bright side- at least I would know the date ahead of time so we could prepare, it eliminated a chance of a false alarm and being sent home, it wouldn't be a middle of the night dash to the hospital, so we would at least be going into it rested. Although my water broke with ry, I wasn't in active labor when I got admitted, so I was still kind of induced. I knew my body responded well to pitocin and had no reason to think it wouldn't this time as well. On Monday my doc was quite surprised to see me, performed an exam, and told me I was *maybe 1.5 but almost all the way effaced and that he was on call the next day, so to head in at 8am for D Day! I literally skipped out of the appointment singing "Our son will come out tomorrow" Annie style to john on the phone. February 3 would be his birthday! I was still getting a 23 in his birthdate (a lucky number of sorts). I couldn't be happier! John, who was home with Ryleigh at the time, ended up taking the day off so we could get things ready and have one final family day as a threesome. I don't remember much about what we did that day, but I remember feeling so relieved that the end was in sight. I hardly slept that night, and we got up much earlier than needed and had a nice coffee and breakfast together before sneaking out of the house. We got checked into our room by 9:30 and found out that our friends who were due a few days after us had just had their baby a few hours earlier at the same hospital. Our babes would be sharing a birthday and we would have roomies in recovery! How cool! My IV was started and about an hour after that my doc popped in to say hello and check me. Still the same- 1.5 cm. He ordered he pitocin and advised I could get my epi whenever but suggested I do it sooner rather than later bc the pitocin would get things going and I could be in pain pretty quickly. Plus the anesthesiologist had a c section in an hour and would be tied up for a while. I needed no convincing and opted to get it then. Within five minutes I was prepped and it was in. The doc came by again around 11:30 and broke my water. Such a weird feeling. John and I just hung out watching Netflix. My parents had Ryleigh and we advised that it was a good time to visit since things could move quickly. They came by around 12:30 ish and brought lunch for John. At this point I was feeling some pain despite the epidural. John checked the monitor and confirmed I was having some pretty strong contractions. The nurse upped the epidural and noted that my contractions were indeed strong considering I was only receiving the lowest dosage of pitocin. I was receiving it at one and it goes up to 30. The plan was to increase it every half hour but she never needed to increase it beyond a one. We sent Ryleigh home to take a nap and right as they left, the nurse said she wanted to check me (this would be my first cervical check since before the induction began). She noticed my contractions were one on top of the other and when she checked me, lo and behold, I was complete! This was at 2:30pm, three hours after the pitocin began and my water was broken. John ran out the room to catch my parents and tell them not to leave, and just to let ry snooze in the car since no one thought it would be long. They had me wait to push since my nurse was at lunch and my doc needed to get over to my room. When everything and everyone was ready to go, I began pushing. He was basically hanging out in the birth canal because he was born on the third push! They say second kids come quick but this was no joke! Had I not had a scheduled induction, he probably would have been born on the side of the road! With Ryleigh, I was really out of it from something they put in my iv to relax my body and make me sleep. This time around, I was totally coherent and remember every detail. I also was able to hold him right away. Ryleigh was whisked away bc she had trouble breathing. He was weighed and his weight was exactly what I had predicted that morning: 8 lbs 3 oz and 21.5" long! He was huge! At least huge compared to his itty bitty sister. I felt really good physically and wasn't in much pain. I did have a small setback when I had to get up to go to the bathroom for the first time. It took me a few tries to be able to walk without passing out, and I did throw up, most likely a side effect from the epi. Once I got sick, I felt a million times better and was able to get wheeled up to recovery. We stayed next door to our friends, which was really cool. After more visits from family and big sis, we called it a night. We were able to leave the next evening since we were seasoned parents and needed little guidance from the nursing staff. That was awesome. I couldn't wait to get to our own bed and be reunited with our girl. 
Kellan has been a dream baby and has fit right into our family. He sleeps through the noise and chaos in our house and is such a mellow little guy. He eats constantly and is huge! Ryleigh has adjusted amazingly and is at a perfect age to become a big sister, in my opinion. We love our little guy and feel complete! 

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Ryleigh Lately

Ryleigh is 15 months today! Where does the time go?
I was watching her run and swim and play on Mother's Day and was thinking about what a difference a year makes. Last Mother's Day, she was three months old. A little teeny baby just learning to roll over. Now she is a walking, talking, laughing, person....with attitude might I add. I can't say I'm surprised considering who her parents are.

Here's what our sweet girl has been up to:

Hanging out at the park. We start every morning at the park by our house. It has a large lake filled with ducks, geese, and turtles, and Ry loves to wave hello and "bu buyyy" to all of them. Lately, though, she's quite happy staying in the swing for our entire park stay. She also has mastered the slide and loves it. Now that the temps are rising, we have been spending many of our afternoons in the pool. She LOVES the water. She also adores the splash park at the shopping center by our house. I used to think splash were the strangest thing. The idea of sticking your kid in a swim suit and letting them run around the fountains right outside a Victoria's Secret and Banana Republic seemed a little weird to me...I mean, why not just take them to a pool? Alas, we now take part in yet another activity that I swore I would never do once I became a mom. I mean, kids just go nuts for it! Now, when I have to make a quick stop at the Shoppes, I have to purposely avoid going anywhere near the splash area or else I will have a very unhappy toddler on my hands. Girl knows exactly where they are and will make a beeline for them if left to her own devices.

Learning. I think every mom thinks her kid is a genius, and since I don't have other kids to compare milestones with, I will just assume that she is one. Genius or not, Ry is definitely one clever cookie. I love just looking at her and seeing her little gears turn. She is really into figuring out how things work. She will remove caps/lids from water bottles, yogurt pouches, cups, etc, and then screw them back on. Once she gets the cap back on she will applaud herself. You really can't get anything by this kid either. The concept of out of sight out of mind doesn't work with her. If she wants something that she can't have like my phone, or daddy's glasses, I will hide it under a pillow or behind a table. She instantly starts digging through blankets, looking under pillows, and searching the general area until she finds what she is looking for. She gets so proud when she finds it, that I usually give in and reward her by letting her play with whatever it is. Oh well. She also loves "re-organizing" her drawers, grandma's kitchen cupboards, and mama's shoes. We have nicknamed her Hurricane Ryleigh. She is also really into mama right now. She watches me get ready, and then finds my makeup bag, locates a compact and a brush, and pretends to put makeup on. She will rub the makeup brush on the compact lid, and then brush it on her cheeks while saying "awwwwww, petttty". So funny! We have to be very careful right now, as she thinks anything remotely resembling the shape and size of a q-tip is a q-tip and will insert it into her ear. Same thing goes with anything resembling a toothbrush.
She has several baby dolls, and she is very sweet with them. She will share her water with them. If I ask her to give the baby some water, she will run and get her sippy cup and put it up to the baby's lips. She will also clean the baby's ears, and rock and pat it. Ready for a sibling? Haha
Her vocab is growing as well. She has mastered all of the animal sounds that we taught her: cat, dog, horse, monkey, bird, duck, snake, dragon (she got this from a show we watch and it's so funny), bear, owl, and cow. She says the following words: mama, dada, papa, up, cat, mer-mer (merlin is our cat), water (pronounced waf), cookie, banana (pronounced nana), bye bye, ni-night, shoes, hat, that, this, more, again, hi, oh no, stop...there's more that I can't think of.

She is pretty independent, and when she wants her space, she will say "bye bye mama" and blow a kiss. If I don't get the hint, then she will waive her arms in the air and say "No, Stop!" and will proceed to lecture me in babble.

She loves bath time, and all we have to say is "It's time for tub, and she will run to the bathroom door and start banging on it.

She is also sleeping like an angel, which is amazing since sleep was hit or miss for her first 9-10 months. Now she's down anywhere between 8-9, and sleeps until btwn 7-8, only waking when she's having a bad teething spell, or if she is battling a cold, like she has twice in the last month!

I have thought every age is the best yet, but I am truly enjoying this stage right now. It really seems as if she understands everything I say, so I feel like we are truly interacting. She will also sit through a cartoon or long chunks of a movie, which makes me happy. I am so looking forward to the day when we can sit on the couch on a cold day, wrap up in blankets, and pop in a movie. I think it will be here soon (well, minus the cold day part).

All in all, this kid is just a joy to be around. Even when she's being a feisty she-devil telling me No No No, she still manages to make my heart melt.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Happy Valentine's Day!

This time last year, I was getting ready to head out to my 38 week check up. I was one day shy of being 38 weeks along, and knew that this would be the first appointment where the doc would check me for progress. I was hopeful that all those contractions I'd been having were actually doing something, but I was prepared and expected to be told to sit tight. My doc had been drilling the fact that I would probably be late into my head since about 30 weeks when I started complaining of being very uncomfortable. As I expected, the doc reported no dilation, not even a little bit. He did say that baby's head was very low, so that meant any contractions I had would be effective, but other than that he said he expected to see me the next week where we could talk induction if I wanted. I left feeling a little defeated. The idea of possible being pregnant for another 3-4 weeks horrified me! I was, however, excited that we would be able to have our Valentines date night. The next day, Feb 15th, I pulled all the tricks to make this baby come. We ended the day with the normal long walk that I had been taking every night. Our route included lots of hills in hopes that it would help. It must have, because our little Valentine arrived the next day, Feb 16th!

It's tough to believe that the teeny baby that only opened her eyes once every 5 hours a year ago is the same walking, talking, laughing, dancing, singing, SCREAMING little love that we have with us today. We are spending this week prepping for her big birthday on Saturday. I can't wait to celebrate our big girl!

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Months 7-10

Well, I took a nice little 5 month hiatus from the blog, but I am back. I am putting Ry's baby book/1st year book together, and the early days of the blog were a great resource to see when she did what. So, I will keep it going to document these things that she may want to look back on one day.

At 7 months, Ry took her first international trip. It was her first plane ride, and as a result, she got her first cold. It was hard seeing her sick and being in another country. It was just a cold, but when her fever was spiking in the middle of the night, all I could think of was how it could go wrong and we wouldn't have any access to our doctors. Luckily I was paranoid for nothing and after a couple days, she was as good as new! We had a wonderful time in Scotland. Ry was christened there, and she got to meet all her family.

At 8 months, Ry celebrated Halloween. She was crawling up a storm at this point and standing up as long as she had something to pull herself up with. She also finally got her first tooth.

At 9 months, Ry weighed in at 17 lbs 4 oz, and was 27" tall! She was able to cruise all around our furniture and was able to get into EVERYTHING! She started waiving and blowing kisses at everyone who would look at her. She also learned to point out "nose", "kitty", "mama", and "dada" when asked.

At 10 months, Ry could stand on her own for long periods of time. She could now point to a nose, teeth, eyes, her blankie, the kitties, grandma, papa, LuLu her Ladybug rocker, and more when asked. She calls me and John by mama and dada. She also can say "mow" when asked what a kitty says. She loves her bananas, and shouts out "nana nana nana"when I am cutting it up for her in the morning. She has a cute way of letting us know she wants something (other than yelling and shrieking). She points out what she wants, and then waves at it frantically. It's so cute. She gives hugs and kisses. She is more inclined to kiss her own reflection, her toys, and other little kids than she is to kiss her mama or dada, but that's ok = )
Just four days shy of 11 months, she took her first real steps. She had taken a couple wobbly steps earlier this month, but on Jan 12th, she took off and took about five real steps. She has been getting better and better, and now can walk from her toys to the couch across the room. She still prefers crawling as she can get to where she wants to be faster, but she is walking more and more each day. I'm sure she will be running laps around us by her first birthday.

Speaking of her birthday, I cannot believe that I am planning it already!She will be one in exactly one month! Invites will be going out this week and I can't wait to see them in person! We are doing a farm-themed party, complete with a mobile petting zoo (think Mrs Doubtfire, minus the horse in the living room). My parents are very kind in allowing us to bring farm animals to their perfect backyard! As an 11 month old, R doesn't have too many real interests yet, but she does love animals. Her favorite books are the ones that have animal pics, and she lights up and laughs anytime we see an animal.

Those are the big month-by-month milestones. I will be back with updates on x-mas

Tuesday, August 28, 2012


I can't believe this little lady is already a half a year old! She is so different from the sleepy little baby I brought home. She's active, alert, talkative, and into EVERYTHING. She's almost perfected the crawl, but in the meantime, she has no problem rolling, scooting, and army crawling to where she wants to be. I am kind of dreading the walking, considering how much she can get into just by rolling! Her personality shines through more and more every day. One thing we've learned about R is that she is a social butterfly. Wonder where she got that from?! She has huge smiles for everyone and anyone, and just loves being around people. Considering that within minutes of her birth, our hospital room was flooded with people, and that sort of continued ever since we came home, I suppose she has been groomed to love company. She doesn't get cranky often, but when she does, I've noticed that it's on the days that she hasn't left the house. Little lady gets bored and stir crazy, just like her mama!

We have our first big trip as a family of three (or technically 5 since my parents are going) coming up. In three weeks, we will be boarding a plane to London, and then on to Scotland. Part of me is excited to take R on her first plane ride...but most of me is dreading it. I don't know when I became a nervous flyer since I do it all the time, but slowly over the years I've grown more and more nervous on planes. Throw becoming a mom into the mix and now I'm a downright paranoid nutcase! Good thing they serve alcohol on planes! The upside of taking R on her first international trip? She just received her most precious baby passport! I almost died when I opened it and saw the cuteness of her little face in the passport picture. Anyone have travel tips for surviving a flight with a baby? I plan to bribe people's compassion by bringing treats or buying drinks for the lucky people sitting near us, but this flight is LONG, so I may run out of ideas by hour 10!

OK, on to the 6 month stats: At R's 6 month appt, she measured:

Length: 26" Long, 50th Percentile

Head Circ: 16.5", 25th Percentile (def didn't get mama's enormous head!)

Weight: 15 lbs, 4 oz, 25th Percentile (don't let those chubby cheeks fool you-she's still kind of itty bitty!)

 Teeth: Workin' on them. No teeth to report just yet, but with the amount of drooling and gnawing, I'd say they'll pop through any time now. Hopefully later rather than sooner, as those chompers will most likely end our nursing relationship!

 Food: She's tried rice cereal, baby oatmeal, sweet potatoes (hands down her favorite), bananas, carrots (she hated them!), peas, butternut squash, and applesauce. Oh yeah, and ice cream. Someone let her dive into some Baskin Robbins ice cream cake, where she got a nice little handful of frosting and ice cream which immediately went into her mouth. Sorry baby, but you have to wait 6 more months for your next taste of cake!

Sleep: I think I had posted that my solid sleep through the nighter baby regressed when we stopped swaddling her. But since little lady loves to sleep on her belly with her face IN the covers, and since she could maneuver herself into that position while swaddled, it was clearly no longer an option. I'm happy to report, that she is doing much better on the sleeping front. She still wakes up once our twice a night to nurse, but it's for about 2 minutes and then she's right back to sleep. We plan to make the switch to formula after our trip to Scotland, so I'm hoping that those middle of the night wakes will stop.

Clothes: She is wearing mostly 3-6 month stuff still, although I'm getting ready to start buying in the next size. I had to by my firs set of onsies the other day. She had onsies to last her through 6 months old from my shower. Considering that I feel like I'm constantly buying things for her, the fact that I've never had to buy her onsies until this week was a win.

Pics: Here are some recent pics of my little love!

Happy Birthday Daddy!

What's wrong?! It's just a little frosting!
Hmmm this isn't ice cream cake!
Out of my way, Mom!
Playing Dress Up

Swim Time

Grocery shopping just got 10000000x easier now that she can sit up!

Happy Half Birthday to Me!

All cozy after our nightly walk

Chillin with Merlin

Of course I finally grow into all my cute hats when it's 1000 deg outside! 

I told you she loves to sleep face down. How is that even comfortable?!

Monday, August 13, 2012

One and Done?

It didn't take long after Miss R popped out for the questions about baby # 2 to begin. In fact, I think I was asked for the first time in the recovery room while I was holding my hours old baby. The thought of doing all that again was horrifying. I would have sent John down the hall for a vasectomy right then if I could have. Now, the actual childbirth part was a breeze. Probably the easiest part of the whole process. I was very fortunate to have such an easy delivery with no complications and very little pain, plus an easy recovery and an easy baby. None of that played into my decision to announce I was done. I had NO desire to be pregnant again. It's no secret that I didn't exactly LOVE being pregnant. The sickness just really got to me after 5 months of it. Was it worth it? Absolutely. Did I want to do it again? Absolutely Not! As they all say, pregnancy did become a distant memory. I have friends who are pregnant now, and they are asking me about feelings and sensations you get towards the end, and I can honestly barely remember. I remember that I was uncomfortable, but the actual details and feelings of being pregnant are fuzzy. That must be natures way of continuing mankind. You really, really do forget! My reasoning for potentially being a mama of one changed from not wanting to go through pregnancy again to not wanting to have anyone I have to share my love with. I no longer dread the thought of being pregnant, because after all, no matter how long 9 months seems at the time, it really does go by fast. I just couldn't imagine having another baby that I would love as much as sweet little R. I also couldn't imagine having to divide my attention between her and a sibling. I'm an only child, and my mom and I have often discussed whether you feel the same about your 2nd, 3rd, 4th born as you do about your first (something no person would admit most likely). Fast forward 6 months, and my mindset has definitely changed. While I am in no means wanting to add to our family anytime soon, I think that I am ok saying that I would like ONE more. This may seem strange, but part of the reason I'd like one more is because I sort of want a pregnancy do over. Now that I know what to expect, I know that I will enjoy pregnancy so much more the next time around. I know that I won't care one single bit about the gender, because you fall in love with that baby and can't imagine it being anything other than what it is once you have it in your arms. I know that every nauseous sprint to the bathroom (or planter in a restaurant parking lot) is worth it. Every muscle ache, headache, and um, other aches are WORTH it. Every drink you have to turn down, whether it be a 2nd cup of coffee or an iced cold margarita, it's worth it! And, that little baby will be another little creature that you and your hubby created, just like the first one. How could you not LOVE it the same? I grew up with a very small family-all only children all both sides. So that means I have a total of 2 cousins. No biological nieces or nephews for me. I think I'd like to break that trend in my fam and add just one more kiddo to the mix. One more. And not until R is at least 2 or 3. I need to enjoy every little moment with my first girl. And while I rest in the recovery room with baby # 2, my husband will be down the hall recovering from his vasectomy. You'd better believe it.