Monday, October 28, 2013

Bennett Nicholas

39 weeks 4 days. 24 hours before you were born. 

We had a plan. I love plans. I was suppose to call my doctor on Monday to set up a time to get checked in his office to decide if I was going to be admitted that night or the following morning for a scheduled induction. Regardless, you were supposed to enter the world on Tuesday the 22nd of October. Monday night your dad and I planned on writing letters to you to express how excited we were to get to meet you. That was the plan. You, Bennett Nicholas had a plan of your own.

Monday morning at 2:30am I awoke to a super strong contraction. I had never had one so strong, but I figured since it wasn't very painful it wasn't a real contraction. I drank some water and laid on my side but then a while later a 2nd contraction came. I decided to time my contractions and over the next hour they were 10 minutes apart. During this time I looked up the surgery schedule to see what time my doctor would be in the OR. He only had one case scheduled for 7:30am. I knew if I could hold off for a little while longer my doctor would be at the hospital and possibly admit me anyways. 
At 3:30 I decided to get up at go downstairs thinking some movement and water would stop these nasty contractions, but boy was I wrong. The contractions jumped from 10 minutes apart to 5 minutes as I frantically began cleaning the house knowing that if I was in labor I couldn't come home to a dirty house.  Dishes were done, kitchen was cleaned, last minute items placed in my hospital bag... Then I decided to carry the vacuum back upstairs to its rightful home. Lance, thinking I was asleep, awoke to his crazy wife carrying the vacuum at 4am. I told him I was contracting but wasn't sure if it was the real deal and for him to go back to sleep. Even with contractions as close as every 3 minutes I jumped in the shower before heading out the door to the hospital. 

We called Lances mom and told her I was contracting and we'd be at her house in a few minutes with our dogs. After dropping them off we headed towards Alta View hospital, stopping for McDolands breakfast on the way because I knew they wouldn't feed me until after delivery :). So there I was contracting every 3-5 minutes in the car cringing while trying to eat my hot cakes. 

At 5:50 we arrived at the hospital to get checked in. My first check was at 6:30 and I had progressed to a 2 1/2cm and 80-90% effaced. I then waited until 7:40 to find out if Dr. Later would be admitting me. My contractions consumed my body as I tried to breathe through each one hoping at any point I would be able to receive an epidural. Finally at 8:40 my blood work had come back and the anestesiologist came in to place my epidural. I had seen many epidurals been placed but actually feeling one was so different.  They placed the pulse ox on my finger but in me trying to releave the pain I was squeezing my own hand so hard I cut the circulation off to that finger and alarms started to ding away. Once the epidural kicked in it was then time to place my catheter and my next check (9:15am) showed I was a 3+ and 90%. At 9:35 Dr. Later came in broke my water and placed an internal fetal monitor because your heart rate kept dropping into to 100-119. At that same time Dr. Later indicated I was a 4cm and 90% and that he anticipated a baby to be born between 12-2pm. An hour later at 10:45am Dr. Later came in, checked me and nonchalantly said, "9cm 3+ station."  
I was in SHOCK and responded with, "no you're joking"  and he replied with, "I don't joke about thing like this... I'll go tell them to set up the room.  We're gonna have a baby!" 
My nurse then came running in asking if it was true because she was also in disbelief that I had progressed so quickly. The tech came in, set up the room and at 11:20 we began pushing. With each contraction I was completely exhausted as I tried to push. I guzzled ice chips and water between each one trying to rehydrate before I was completely winded again. I even said, "I've seen tons of women push and it never looked tiring, but holy crap this is exhausting!" Finally at 11:50, after 20 minutes of pushing you entered the world with the cord wrapped around your little neck twice. Apgars of 8 and 9 respectively-points off for color. 
It was honestly such a surreal feeling watching you and holding you as they cleaned you off. I couldn't even believe that 1, you fit inside of me, and 2 that you were finally here! 
Your little lips and mouth, and above your nose was bruised from the trauma of birth, but you latched like a champ from the beginning and have been doing so amazing ever since. 

meeting new friends:

Overall I am just in awe that I get to call you mine.  That your precious little spirit has been sent to me and granted me the privileged of being your mother. I have been told so many times how a mothers love is undeniably strong, and after looking at your sweet little nose and perfect little hands and feet that you are indeed the love of my life. My heart melts each and every time I see your father interact with you. He truly does love you and is so excited to watch you grow. I hope that as you grow you always know how much I love you and how grateful I am to have been given the gift of being a mother. I love you to the moon and look forward to watching you grow and develop to learn and love. 

-love mom. 

Friday, October 18, 2013

Family Home Evening: Pumpkins

I won't lie.  For the majority of our life together Lance and I haven't been the most diligent with family home evening.  The beginning weeks of our marriage we would listen to talks and mormon messages, but with hectic work and school schedules it just always seemed to impossible to dedicate our Monday nights to family home evening.  With a new baby on the way and a family of two suddenly becoming three we have talked numerous times about how to help raise our children within the gospel.  With the inspiring words from our beloved apostles and church leaders this past General Conference we have made much stronger efforts to include the practice of Family Home Evening in our weekly routine.  

Two weeks ago our FHE consisted of watching Elder Bednar's talk followed by an adventure to Lowes were we bought stuff for our duplex and picked up our pumpkins.  

This past week was our pumpkin carving night.  We watched a few more General Conference talks and manipulated these pumpkins to our liking.  I found a hilarious stencil of a baby in a mom's belly and of course couldn't resist... (and yes I think my belly is bigger than this pumpkin).
 Lance chose his idol: Batman.
 We have them all set up on our porch with Lance's halloween lights (black and orange).  We are all set for Halloween!

39 Weeks

Getting our duplex in order has really consumed our morning/afternoons the past week.  There are moments that I stop and think.... I am going to have a baby in a matter of days and I am currently doing __________. (fill with painting/cleaning/plumbing/scrubbing/sweeping/grouting/tiling/ect).  Yesterday Lance and I took a much needed break from our hard work and enjoyed a lovely picnic of Cafe Rio on the front lawn surrounded by the rubble that was once our duplex.  So far we have made decent progress, but we definitely aren't as far along as I would have hoped.  Today was my (by choice) last day up at the duplex helping.  I even made a list of the things we still need to accomplish and to my frustration and ADHD I wasn't able to cross off most items as being "completed" because I like to hop from one project to the next without the previous being entirely finished.  Lance has his work cut out for him over the next few weeks.  Midterms, duplex remodeling, work, new baby, no sleep, and basketball tryfouts in 3 weeks.... may the odds be ever in his favor.

39 Weeks: 
 Uterus: measuring right on: 39 Weeks
Fetal Heart Tones:  140 bpm
Total weight gain: weight gain 40 lbs!!!! eeekkkk.....
Maternity clothes? Yes and with very LIMITED "lounging" clothes.  I have resulted to Lance's sweatpants and a men's undershirt that I have the constantly pull down to keep my belly covered.
Stretch marks? still none.. at least that I can see.
Sleep: like clockwork... 11pm, 1am, 3am, 5:30am, 7:30am, 8:30am up to pee.  The 3 am one being the hardest to get back to sleep after.
Best moment this week:  Not having to go to work!!! Yay for modified bedrest.
Food cravings: pumpkin pie. My dad and I drove to Smith's at 10pm to pick up a pie to satisfy our craving.
Anything making you queasy or sick: Just picked up a slight cold/congestion/head going to explode yesterday.. Hoping to get rid of it before Monday.
Gender: Boy
Name:  I think we are pretty set on the first name, the middle name is now up for debate.
Belly Button in or out? definitely out.
Movement: movement to the point that his pokey little limbs kinda hurt as a jab out my right side.
Contractions:  irregular. 
Wedding rings on or off? off. numbness in my 3 middle fingers on my left hand. 
Swelling: boy oh boy. Yes!  my feet look like puffy little aliens.
Happy or Moody most of the time: slightly irritated by everything... I won't lie
Looking forward to: getting to meet my little guy in just 4 days!


Overall I am very pleased and excited with how my nursery turned out.  I debated for months and months as to a color scheme and had set in my mind that I wanted Navy and White, but in what percentages and combination I was completely lost.  I looked at painting the walls navy, painting half the walls navy with a wainscoting on the bottom half, and even looked into painting the whole room white.  All in all I'm happy I made the decision to keep things light and airy in the little room I designated for the nursery and Kwal: Time Capsule did just the trick.  This paint covered so wonderfully I only had to do one coat and I even bought the low VOC so I didn't stink myself out of the room mid painting. 

We hung Ikea picture racks found here as our book shelf on a wall that would have otherwise been neglected.  At some point I plan on transitioning the short wall behind the door into a chalk board or magnetic wall, but I figured it'll be awhile before he can play with such things.

 The bedding:  my dear sweet friend Roz offered to make my crib bedding as my baby shower gift.  I wasn't planning on getting crib bedding because there wasn't anything that I liked/loved enough to pay the $$$ store prices for, but let me tell you it really does make the room so much more cohesive.
Roz is my same friend who basically built my wedding dress so if anyone is in need of a seamstress in Utah she is your girl.  

 The Finished Product:

Bedding: custom made by Roz McClary you can contact her here:  Sew Sweet
Mobile: handmade by me
Dresser: Ikea
Dresser Knobs: Pier 1 Imports on clearance
Crib: Target
Map Artwork: Hobby Lobby
Humidifier: Crane
Lamp: Ikea
Rocker: KSL steal

No Longer the Only Babies

If there's one thing to know about me and Lance it is that we absolutely love and adore our furry friends.  Lance wasn't all too excited to get a dog, but I convinced Lance that me living alone in our duplex would be scary... and how could you resist a face like this?

So there ya have it.  On Cinco de Mayo we drove up to Tremonton and bought Ellie from a high school girl who didn't have the time to dedicate to raising a puppy.  

A year and a half later I felt Ellie needed a companion because she was home alone a lot and just slept (apparently that's all dogs do when you are gone, but I had Lance convinced that she needed a friend)... enter dog #2.
Winston on December 23, 2011 aka my Christmas present.
Here we are coming up on 4 years of knowing each other, 3 years of marriage, 2 dogs, and 1 baby about to pop out in a matter of days.  We have spent a lot of time over the last few months enjoying our little companions in a variety of ways.  Here are some of those:

Winston loves being held like a baby.  He doesn't understand that he weighs 50lbs.

At the dog park they love walking... but only if we are right by their side.  They aren't the best at making new friends.

They love Sunday car rides to and from "grandma's house."  Ellie can sense that it's Sunday.  She gets all hyper and runs in circles by the door until we let her in the car.

They've become quite good at sharing bones.

They love to watch us very intensely as we eat dinner...

Especially if they are going to be surprised with some rib bones.

 We've recently tried to transition them to these lovely beds instead of their kennels because once the baby comes we know they will be freaking out in the middle of the night hearing that people are awake.  So far the last 2 nights they've woken up almost every 2 hours and tried to jump in our bed... luckily I have to pee every 2 hours so I put them back... and I guess this is preparing Lance for what's to come...
Our dogs may be hyper, loud, and a little aggressive from time to time, but they are so cuddly and lovable.  Our house truly wouldn't be a home without them. Here's to hoping you don't feel like 2nd priority in a few days. May the transition be smooth and the baby bite free.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

38.5 Weeks & a plan

Today was my "38-39" week appointment, this being my 3rd weekly appointment and 3rd time being "checked."
2 weeks ago I was measuring at 60% effaced and 1/2cm dilated.
Last week... same measurements.
 So after my appointment last Tuesday the remainder of my week was spent working Wednesday, Thursday, & Friday.  Our unit was so busy that on Thursday I discharged ALL of my patients (4 of them) and picked up 4 NEW patients... literally running my pregnant belly off.  Each day I went home with extremely swollen feet, but somehow had enough energy to wake up the next morning and do it all over.  Friday, however, I hit a wall.  I felt as if something was a little "off" so I told my charge nurse Melissa and she immediately had me check my blood pressure...  138/98.. not so good.  I then went upstairs to get some urine dipsticks to check for preeclampsia but the dipsticks shows up normal (of the joys of working in a hospital with so many things accessible).  I continued working and a few hours later my pressure was a little lower 133/90 which wasn't as worrisome.  Saturday and Sunday were spent running errands and resting, but Sunday after church I still felt a little off with a headache, swollen feet, and numb fingers.  I checked my blood pressure at home to find it at 140/100!  On our way to Sunday Dinner we stopped at my hospital and I picked up a few urine dipsticks as well as had my coworker nurse check my pressure with our hospital machines... yup 140/98.  I peed on the dipstick and once again no protein, but with the high blood pressure and me having not worked the last two days I was a little concerned.  Instead of driving all the way to Alta View Hospital in Sandy I instead chose to text my doctor my signs and symptoms.  He called me a few minutes later and basically told me that there comes a time that I need to stop working and that time was now.  So YAY that I didn't have to go to work yesterday and that I have officially started my leave of absence.  He told me to take it easy (... I'm not sure if ripping up floors in the duplex counts.. whoops) and we would reconvene on Tuesday at my appointment. 

Lance went up to the duplex to get a head start on painting and my dad ventured with me to my OB appointment instead.  Luckily I had my dad run to the car to grab my FMLA paperwork when I was called back to get checked... because this was definitely an atypical doctor's visit.

Urine Dipstick: within normal limits
Weight: 2lb gain since last week
Blood pressure: 133/88
Fetal Heart Rate: 140

My MD then entered the room and his first remark was, "C'mon you were supposed to have a high pressure today!!!"  He continued to talk saying that we could be delivering this baby as soon as tomorrow, but first needed a reason or indication to induce.  So he preceded to check and guess what..
Cervical Check: EXACTLY THE SAME grrr... 1/2cm & 60% effaced.
He then wanted to check my fluid levels.  If my fluid levels were low induction could happen. So he left the exam room and said, "I'll check the halls for guys..." after checking the halls he said "C'mon Christine!" and there I went. Running through the halls of my OB office with just a sheet covering my bottom half and nurses and medical assistants all giggling as I passed by.  We entered the other exam room that is home to the ultrasound machine.  Fluid levels looked great.. little Gummy is just bobbing away in there.  He then checked the placenta to see if it was a level 3 which it almost was  (a level 3 means the lungs are fully matured).  Because we were right on target and baby looked great there was no grounds to say he NEEDED to come out today and I am happy as a clam to let me stay inside for another week if it means his little lungs will be more developed and stronger to fight the awful winter season filled with gross RSV, Croup, and who knows what else!

We then ventured back to the other exam room where we discussed dates.  Next Tuesday was the agreed upon date for induction due to my blood pressure and swelling.. and me being full term at 40 weeks. 

I know some people would be mad/frustrated/angry to have to wait another week, but I honestly view it as a blessing in so many ways.  I have been gifted a week to make sure the house is in order & clean, to run last minute errands, rest, and to help/supervise the remodel of our duplex.  I have been blessed with time to enjoy being a married couple without children for just one more week.  I have been gifted a set plan or schedule which is honestly one of the things I am MOST excited for.. knowing the exact date things are going to happen and being able to plan.  Going without a plan for the past couple of weeks has driven me a little crazy.  I hate the unknown.  But here I am now.. with a plan. A plan that I love.

Duplex Day 1 & 2: Reno, Tile floor & Paint

Lance came home a few weeks ago and the first words out of his mouth were, "I HAVE THE WORST NEWS!"... oh great, now what.... "JOHN IS MOVING." 

For those who don't know we own a duplex up in Holladay and were so fortunate to have John as a long term renter.  John has lived in his side of the duplex for 15 years and through 3 different owners.  When we bought the duplex we knew we would eventually have to tear down his side and completely remodel but he reassured us over the last 3 years that he had ZERO intention of leaving.. ever.

Things happen.  He was offered a better paying job near his girlfriend and so off to Roy, UT John goes. 

Now for the headache of remodeling his unit... not to mention he officially  moved out yesterday which leaves very little time for us to get things done before little Gummy comes, but somehow we've been blessed.

The BEFORE Kitchen & Day 1
The floors were peel and stick tiles that Lance was able to rip up with one hand.  Underneath was a cork flooring that we pried up with a little effort. 

 Here's me at 38 weeks ripping up the cork sub-floor while Lance worked on destroying the wall of cabinets you see in the above photo.

 With the cork all gone we next laid the new concrete sub-floor with some screws.  Lance and his dad then spent the next 3 hours laying the tile while I sat on a bucket supervising and using the tile cutter as needed.

 Day one of remodeling came to a close with the tile floor in place.
Today was day 2 which consisted of me grouting the newly laid tile floor, Lance going to town with paint on the walls, and my dad working diligently at replacing the lock on the door.  The old lock was completely corroded onto the door and it literally took him over 2 hours to get the old lock off, to adjust the opening, and install a new lock.  Thank heavens he was around to help us!
Grout:  Check!
First coat of paint almost finished..

new door knob: Check!