Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Just Like That...

Today we celebrate 2 weeks with Finn... and as I sit here and type up his birth story.. I can't help but look down and stare in awe at my little man (he kind of looks like a grumpy old man with how many wrinkles he has).... how tiny he is, but rejoicing that he's nearly back up to his birth weight (just shy an ounce) and how well he's doing. These first 2 weeks have flown by.. just like that. 

I close my eyes, and try and remember all the details about Finn's birth story... but his labor/delivery happened so fast, I'm certain that I'm going to miss something. I did want to jot it down however, before it completely escaped my mind. To remember the details... is all I can give him, about the day he made his grand entrance into this world... his birthday, August 5th.

It all started that afternoon... wait, let me share a little background history first. On the eve of Marley's birth... Charlotte wet the bed that night... Early morning on the 5th, Charlotte came into our room at 5 am, crying... she had wet the bed. She hadn't wet the bed in 1 whole year... sounds like I might just have my barometer for anytime I need to give birth...

That morning I was feeling terribly exhausted... but I let the hubby sleep in (he was off for vacation that week), and I took care of the girls. Looking back, I bet Marley sensed something as well, because she was extremely "needy" and wanted to smother me with love the entire morning. Around 10 o'clock, Marley went down for her nap... and I had the option: either sew my cushions for my front porch or nap... I chose, sleep. For this busy body, I should have known something was up at this point. I laid down, and slept like a rock. I didn't have to get up to pee, none of the kids interrupted me... it felt divine. At noon, I woke up hearing Marley wake from her nap on the monitor, and that's when I sat up in bed, and felt a tinkling leak out of my body... I rushed to the toilet, but still left a fairly big puddle behind... I peed... hmm, could my water have broke, or did I just pee myself... not quite sure. As I made my way out the living room, where my husband was with the girls... I was taking my shorts off and what not to place into the laundry... "Honey... I can't believe I just peed myself..." and as I bent over to get them off my legs, BAM... water on the floor... "Honey... my water just broke... this is happening today." As panic began... I started delegating the girls and my husband to start cleaning the house, and getting things in order, because I wasn't "coming home to a mess"...

Contractions didn't come on right away. In fact, I was able to set the house in order, finish packing our bags, shower, and fold laundry all before they started to get intense. They started around 2:30 pm... very irregular at first, but after about 15 minutes, they began to come on every 5 minutes... and I labored at home for another 45 minutes, before I knew we needed to start heading to the hospital. I couldn't talk through the contractions, and couldn't move around through the contractions at all... they took my breath away. We dropped the girls off at 3:30 pm with my sweet friend... and made it to the hospital by 4:00pm. This whole time, from the point where my water broke, up until now, I had tried to get in touch with my midwife... but she was "not in the clinic", it was her "off" day. As soon as we made it up to the Womens/Newborns Urgent Care... where Labor and Delivery is (took awhile, because stubborn me declined the wheelchair)...we managed to get up to the floor, and checked in by 4:30 pm. They needed to make sure I had indeed "broke my water"... and that tested positive immediately... I mean seriously, all they had to do, was look down at my fresh new shorts that I had on... they were soaked with fluid from the car ride. I asked who the midwife "on call" was... and to my surprise, in walks my midwife... and I'm pretty sure I immediately started crying because the sight of her, just made me happy, and the pain was unbearable. It was her "off" day in the clinic, but that meant she was "on" for the hospital.

They brought us to RM 11... the one I delivered Marley in... it was my midwife's request... and she thought it would be good luck for me. I was thankful to her, for that gift... we got settled, and I put my robe on... and continued breathing through contractions, which at this point were about 3 minutes apart... and fairly strong. At that point, my midwife decided to "check" me... and I became acquainted with my first L&D nurse Lori... who spent the rest of her shift, trying to plug an IV into my arm... NO LIE... they poked me at least 6x... and finally gave up, and went for the top of my hand. I measured at this point at 100% effaced, 0 station, and 4 inches dilated... basically his head is there and ready... but they needed me to dilate 6 more cm. This was at 5:30 pm. Lori convinced me to walk a bit... and so I did. I only made it down the hallway and around the corner, before I realized I just couldn't walk anymore. With his head so low... I felt like I needed to push already, and couldn't... it felt like something was lodged in between my legs (because... it kind of was!) and I couldn't walk at all. So we made our way back to the room, and I sort of laid down a bit to continue to "rest" in between these contractions. They were about 2-3 minutes apart... and were taking my breath away, when the L&D nurse shift change happened.

I was greeted by Shante, who was going to take care of me until 7 am... hoping that this little guy was going to come into the word a lot sooner than that. At that point, I WANTED an epidural... oh did I... We shared my desire outloud, and she said she'd order that for me, but that at the moment, they were in an emergency C-Section (and my midwife was in there as well). This was at 8 pm. She said that the doctors could come in about 30 minutes.... 30 minutes passed... no one came. 15 minutes later in strolled my "dream team", the anesthesiologists... It took them about 15 minutes to go through patient history to make sure I was a good candidate... I assured them I was. I begged for them to "put in my epidural" in between contractions... they said they couldn't do that. At 9:15 pm, they had me sit up in bed... at the edge of the bed, and bend over my big basketball belly... and I have NEVER... EVER felt SO much pain in my entire life. They hadn't even poked me yet or anything... but the contractions were SO intense, I was groaning so lowly in order to get through them. IF my midwife had been around to check me before they started the epidural, this would be the point where they would have seen that I was in the middle of "transition" most likely... heading straight for the 10 cm... Having them poke my back, actually distracted me from the contractions. They pumped me full of the first dose by 9:30.. and the second dose by 9:35... my legs were only slightly bit tingled... but I continued to feel each and every blessed contraction. At 9:45 my midwife walked in, along with Shante... they put in a catheter.. and my midwife checked me... "Alright, " she said... "It's time to have a baby..."

Are you kidding me? I went through ALLLLL of that, to have absolutely NO relief and the urge to push?... yup. I tried not to dwell on that and at that point, I was ready to push... 15 minutes later (after they set up everything... you know that wonderful tray of "tools") at 10:00 pm on the dot... I waited for a contraction, and took my very first push. In that push, they could already see tons of hair and half of his head... next contraction came about 5 minutes later... and during that contraction, I was able to push 3 times, and got his entire head out... one last contraction about 1 minute later, brought the rest of him into this world... just like that. It was only 8 minutes of pushing... 8 minutes. They plopped our little man straight on my chest, at 10:08 pm... full of yummy lanugo goodness (being 2.5 weeks early). He was the slimiest little guy... and barely cried at first. He waited to hear my voice, tried to peep his eyes, and began crying the moment Daddy cut the umbilical cord (we did delayed cord clamping, just like we had with Marley).

It took until 3 am, to get moved into our recovery room... according to Shante, there were A LOT of deliveries that night... and they needed to make room for us all. They weighed him in at 6 lbs 14 oz, even though he first measured 6 lbs 15 oz... and 19.5 inches long. He felt like a little peanut compared to Marley. A very cute and handsome little peanut. The hubby stayed the rest of the early morning and slept... and I couldn't help but stare at our perfect little boy. Immediately, I was smitten... 

The next day, I FINALLY enjoyed my very first cup of coffee that I hadn't had for awhile... and it was heavenly... and enjoyed some sweet baby boy cuddles before Daddy left to bring the girls in to introduce them to their baby brother. 

Both girls were a little skeptical of their baby brother at first, and there's been some tough adjustments... but I think they're okay with him... they have to be okay with him... he's not going anywhere.

We named our little man Finn Mostyn Davis... Mostyn is a family name passed down from generation to generation (as a middle name)... and Finn means "small blonde soldier"... He's definitely small right now... He's sure to grow large... but soldier is definitely appropriate when you stick him in with two older sisters... 2 very rambunctious sisters that are super excited to play dress up with him.

Sweet Finn... you are SO loved... and just like that, we're officially outnumbered.
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Monday, August 18, 2014

Reap and a Recipe

Harvest time for the summer veggies is finally here... I'm SO happy I held off on planting until later... because it's perfect timing with Finn being born. After his feedings, I usually can escape to the garden for a little bit (a quick 15 minutes is all it takes... if not less).. and bring my little sidekick along. It gives us some bonding time... and she definitely always reaps the benefits of it.

RECIPE: Bean and Cucumber Salad... a family favorite.

-  Take a generous portion of beans, and boil them for a few minutes, to soften them... 

-  Drain and refrigerate for a few minutes. While they're cooling, slice a few cucumbers (if they're the small pickling cucumbers) or one large cucumber. 

-  Chop up some dill, like a handful. Mix together dill, a scoop or two of sour cream, a little dash of white vinegar, and add some sugar to sweeten. Add to sliced up cucumbers, and mix... and then add cooled beans. Mix.

-  Chop a little extra dill ( I like dill.) and top off before serving. 

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Saturday, August 16, 2014

Time To Craft...

When Charlotte spend some "time together"... we usually, bake... prep dinner... or craft. Just like I stated in this post, it's super important to set aside minutes to foster the relationship between her and I. Having a newborn now in the house, it seems like even a little less time... BUT, it's still time, and that's all she desires. Whether it's a minute, or 30... it's time.

Lots of birthday parties have been happening around here... and having just had a newborn, we haven't had MUCH time to get out of the house, to hunt down and purchase a toy present for the little ones we've been celebrating. These relationships, are friendships that Charlotte cherishes... and so, I ask if she'd like to "create" something for her friends... she replies, "yes"... and we go to town.

Whenever we get together with some of her best friends, I tend to photograph them, at least with my phone... like I said, she cherishes these friendships... and being a military child... we'll more than likely part ways with them in a little bit. There's NOTHING better to Charlotte than photographs... she relives their adventures everytime she looks through my camera roll... and it brings her so much joy.

For her most recent birthday party invite, we decided to print out some of these Instagram photos (there are a ton of companies that can do this for you... we chose one, that printed on 3x3 " squares) so that her sweet friend might find that same joy in reliving those adventures... 

1. Find a vessel to put those photos in... it could be KRAFT box, like the one we used... we knew we wanted to stamp it, so it was a nice blank canvas for us. You could use a decorated one, or decorate yourself (with washi tape, stickers, scrapbooking paper, etc.)... but we kept ours simple. Charlotte helped dip the stamps into the ink and I just showed her how to stamp on a paper (for practice) and then she completed the box after.

2. Pick and choose which photos to print, and PRINT them out.  SO many of us, keep our photos in our phones... we hardly ever print them. Kids are so used to electronic viewing... that to look through photos, it's often "foreign" to them. It doesn't have to be. There are ton of companies that have phone apps, (Origrami, Instaprint, Postal Pix, etc) that you can download. Once you sign into your IG account, it's super easy to load and order your favorite prints. Ours came within 3-4 days... and they were then ready to place in the box.

3. What's better than toys? ICE CREAM... we picked up a gift card to stick in with the photos... Charlotte created a little tag... 

4.  Tie it all up... and you have a totally sweet gift for your little one's sweet friend. This also works well for adults... add a gift card to a coffee place... or ice cream shack... or cupcakery... endless possibilities.

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Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Dear Finn Mostyn

Dear Finn Mostyn,

Our sweet sweet boy... we cannot believe it has already been 1 week since you made your grand appearance into this world at 10:08 pm, on the 5th of August. Time already is flying by too quickly... and it feels like we've barely even had a moment to sit down, and process that we are a family of five. Mommy and Daddy are officially outnumbered thanks to you.

What a sweet and peaceful little man you are (except when you're getting your diaper changed)... you already are full of personality... laid back, relaxed and a "go with the flow" kind of baby. The kind of baby we needed after two fairly high maintenance little ladies. The baby that most Mommys dream of... that eat well, sleep well, do their business and are content kind of baby. The baby that we are so blessed to call ours... our boy.

We thought we'd always be the family with "girls"... and were we ever surprised when we found out that you were a boy... definitely unexpected, but a good kind of unexpected. You are going to change our lives in a whole different way than both of your sisters have, and we're so excited to see how. How we will be challenged by you, to help us grow and be better parents to you. How we will be thrown into the "boyish domain" of bugs, poop, and all things blue. How to love a boy, other than Daddy.

The thing that we (or really Mommy) is most excited about, is how you'll interact with each and every one of us. Mommy is so excited to see what all the hype is about a Mommy/Son relationship. Apparently, boys tend to be the "bees knees" to Mommys... and I suppose it's a pretty accurate statement. She sure does seem to be smitten with you. We're excited to see how Daddy will be able to handle having a son after 2 daughters... Something tells me, it'll be just fine, as long as you start mowing the lawn by the time you're a year old. Mommy is extremely excited to see how you'll follow in his footsteps... Mommy already swoons when she sees both of you guys together bonding... like "men".

and then there's the relationships that you'll have with each of your sisters... Oh boy, I'm sure we could write a book on predictions as to all the trouble you 3 will get into... It's sure to be an adventure... an AMAZING adventure... an AMAZING adventure that only now has begun...

You are so loved ... so so loved,

Daddy, Mommy, Charlotte and Marley

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Monday, August 04, 2014

A Whole New World...

So many thoughts are fleeting through my mind the closer that I get to my due date... little boy can come at anytime, and I feel so different about this next step, compared to how I felt when I was nearly due with Marley. With Marley, we were entering familiar territory, new... in the baby sense, since we adopted Charlotte when she was 3.5.... but familiar, because we were adding another girl to the mix. Girls, I know... boys, not quite as much. There's this itty bitty fear inside of me, of entering into the lego, pee while standing up, love for bugs and things that creep domain. And then there's this part of me that feels so bad for him... he's entering this world of "pink" in our house... all things sparkle, boo boos are covered in princess bandaids (even Daddy wears these proudly), and most of the toys are of "girly nature". I'm sure we'll figure it all out... and from what most have told me, boys are easier... we shall see if that's the case for us. It's going to be a "whole new world" for us... and not the kind that we sing in a high pitch Ariel voice...

For now, we prep... and get things in order for him... and get as excited as can be about all the "new" that's to come for this household... I know we're all going to be smitten with him, and I can't wait seeing that in person with each and every one of us.
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Sunday, August 03, 2014

36/37 weeks { bumpdate }

It's been awhile since I've had a bumpdate... and figured it was about time to document my huge basketball... at least one more time before this little bug decides to make his appearance. We don't know when... and we don't know how... but SOMEHOW at SOMETIME he will be here this month... and it's crazy to wrap my head around it all. But dare I say it... yes, I shall... we are ready. SO ready.

I was a single parent over the last few weeks, and that was a mighty job to do this far along in pregnancy. I think the girls and I lived off of peanut butter sandwiches and cereal the whole time, minus when we had company. I definitely tried my hardest to steal naps here and there where I could, but most of the time, I wasn't able to get comfortable enough to make it worthwhile. By the time I'd get cozy, Marley would be up and ready to take on "playtime" again.

It takes me twice as long to do anything these days, because I move SUPER slow. Even showering sucks the life out of me, so I usually have to give myself 1 hour to get ready now, instead of a quick 30 minutes. Dinner cooking, errand running, doctor's appointments, etc... take SO long for me to get through, that usually I have to limit myself to 1 thing a day, before I'm completely exhausted. Something about hauling around a 1 year old on your hip (she's barely walking still)... and waddling... they don't work well together, but I have to make it work.

All of my recent appointments have gone well... little bug is still expected to come sometime in the middle of this month, and he is in position. His head has been "engaged" for awhile now, and just when I thought I couldn't carry any lower, he dropped. There's been a lot of pressure going on, and I've been contracting, A LOT. In fact, at my last appointment, I had 3 during my 20 something minute appointment. SO much pressure... but no little bug to show for it... yet. I'm hopeful that all this prodromal labor is aiding in dilating and effacing... but who knows.

At my last ultrasound, we got to peek in and see his sweet little face in the womb one last time. Every time, I'm in awe of how much he resembles Marley... he was practicing his breathing skills and playing with his toes the whole time the sonographer was doing her thing. His kidney still has a 1mm discrepancy... so as soon as he comes out, he'll have a more accurate ultrasound done on himself, to make sure all is well. Otherwise, he was measuring around 6lbs 9 oz... and totally adorable.

Cravings: all the ice in the world.... give it all to me.

Turn Offs: other than the fact that I can't drink a whole cup of warm coffee... there's not much that I don't like.

Daddy, Charlotte and Marley's thoughts on the pregnancy thus far: Pretty sure that every day they pray I go into "active labor"... "Today seems like a great day to have a baby!" ... yeah, we are all OVER this pregnancy, and just want to meet his little man. Bring on the Family of 5!
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Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Setting Aside Minutes.

Some one on one time is pretty needed around here, especially when you're the oldest and you don't nap anymore, and Mommy is constantly busy giving her attention out in 50 other places... So, Charlotte and I... we bake. That's right, when Marley naps, we either try and bake something (if the need is there for something sweet in the house), or we prep dinner for that night. It's sort of "our time"... sometimes it's just a quick 20 minutes... other times it's longer. She knows it's her time to talk my ear off, not worry about cleaning or doing her other chores, no schoolwork... but rather just a time for her to get my undivided attention. Once little brother comes out, I know it'll look a little different... and I think she knows that too... it might be time to "water the plants" or "feed baby boy and color" or "fold up some laundry"... but I'm REALLY hoping that each day, I can set aside those minutes for her... because they totally one hundred percent make her happiest. She's my first baby, and I need to remember that. Like any relationship, it needs to constantly be "fed" in order to flourish... 

And for those of you who might be interested in the world's yummiest chocolate chip recipe... here's the one I use (but be sure to nearly double the vanilla recipe... vanilla is SO good).
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