Thursday, August 25, 2011

1 Week Old Adventure

Claire is one week old today! We went to Kim Flores Photography studio today and had so much fun watching Claire pose like a little newborn model. I almost cannot contain my excitement to see the pictures. I wish I saw them right now. I am in loveeeee with the poses. She looked like a little angel! The sweetest faces she made along with three poops right on Kim twice, and 3 pees twice on Tim! It was kind of funny, but pretty gross too! Poor Kim has a ton of laundry to do today since Miss Claire paid a visit to her.

As soon as I get a preview picture, I'll post it...I can barely wait!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Sweet C POD (Pic of the Day)

Tummy time when she's alert is what the doc ordered!

Seriously she is one strong cookie.

I mean she walks up with her legs when on her tummy and moves her head from side to side.

She's so darn cute!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Sweet C Pic of the Day

Spending time with her daddy wide awake before bedtime!
5 Days Old

1st Day Out & History in the Headlines

Well Claire is like every newborn in the sense she clearly has her own agenda and will do whatever she wants, whenever she wants! Last night Mimi stayed over and Tim got 8 hours of sleep; I'm so envious, and I got a few 2.5 hour straight sleepy time because my mom stayed up with her if she wasn't sleeping.

Breastfeeding is not what I expected as I am in some pain and discomfort as I pray my body will figure everything out sooner rather than later. I guess I didn't have an expectation I was just hoping I'd stick with it. Today it got easier because I went and got shield which is helping with the engorgement! Tim is loving the fact that I just keep growing, although there is no way he would be getting near them anytime soon, for one they hurt, and for two they look like a leaky faucet (TMI, most likely, my apologies).

Today, we headed out at 10:40 and Tim got a chai tea from Starbucks would have to wait as of course we were "right on time". The doctor's office was an absolute zoo - wow! I guess that's the story of a pediatrician's office: sick kids, well kids, screaming kids, hyperactive kids, etc. We luckily got called back fairly quickly and gave all Claire's information to the nurse. She weighed out baby girl and she measured 6lbs 13 oz. That means she's already gained one ounce. Babies typically will lose weight until 5 days of age where they start to put it back on. I was thrilled with the fact, clearly she's eating! Dr. M came in and he checked her out and said she's doing beautifully. He answered some of our questions, but unfortunately, Murphy's Law, I left the entire piece of paper with my list of questions on the dining room table. Luckily I remembered a few, but honestly at this point Claire was screaming with a dirty diaper, so Tim was changing her while I was trying to talk about our concerns. He told us to put her in her crib tonight and see if that works. He said he did it with all his kids, from day one. He said try not to get used to all the inclined like sleepers. Hmm...things to think about. He mentioned to go try pacifiers and not to be afraid of them because I should not be her pacifier. UGH - I have probably already started this bad habit and it needs to be broken. He also encouraged us to do tummy time with her when she's awake and shockingly we've been doing it here and there and she is a strong cookie. I am amazed by how much she can control her neck and head and the fact she does the army crawl up with her legs pushing on the ground or my chest as her butt enters the air. She also can turn her head side to side. He was surprised by how alert she is when she's awake. She was pretty eyed looking at the doc as to say, "Yes, I am a strong baby girl and dashingly beautiful, don't ya think?".

Headlines Today: Quake of the East Coast - sadly I will not be in school next week to actually start the school year with current events of Earth Science - I am super SUPER bummed about it. But, clearly for obvious reasons I will be home and I am pretty happy about that! My baby girl needs me and I can't imagine leaving her - November is far in the distance and in the back of my mind! Well we had just gotten back from the doctors and Babies R Us and I sat down to feed the little one. As soon as we started the room started shaking and Tim and I look at each other puzzled for a second, then he opens the front door and I stand up with Claire in the football hold saying get away from the window and we wobble to the doorway between our dining room and living room. I crouch down on the floor and both pups come sitting next to me. And it stops...

Tim and I stare at each other and are like are you serious that just happened...we both concluded "earthquake". Sure enough we turn on the news 10 minutes later and a 5.8 quake just hit in Virginia and spread up and down the East Coast. That sure will make it in the baby book for Claire.

As she sleeps on my chest right now I just think about what a bad habit I may have started, and will I ever get relief while she naps. I think I am going to start trying to have her feed while I lay down.

1st Day

Sunday, August 21, 2011

When 1 + 1 = 3

August 18th, 2011 we were blessed with the arrival of our little girl screaming her lungs out as she made her grand entrance.

It all started on the 17th when I felt crampy and different. I knew it was most likely near...but I guess I was sure it would happen within the next 26-28 hours. I was timing some inconsistent contractions between 5-10 minutes apart for the later portion of the day on the 17th. I woke up at 2 am and couldn't ignore them anymore, while sleeping and started timing. This time they were about 5 minutes apart. So I called Dr. J...and he told me to go in and get checked...

We were at the hospital from 2:30-7 am with very little progress, but some was made. I was ordered to walk the tiny hallway of the 3rd floor for an hour straight before I could be rechecked and admitted or discharged. My doctor told me to come to the office at 9:30 that morning so he could actually check me and in his office he said if we were ready (since my water hadn't broken yet) we could head to the hospital around 2:30 pm because he'd be there doing a procedure on someone...but if we showed up we weren't leaving and baby girl would be entering the world. Wow, a flood of emotions: uncertainty, excitement, anxiousness, elated, relieved, and thrilled...

So as I sat at home with Tim, my mom, and Peter for 4 hours before we headed to the hospital I was breathing through contractions as they began to get more intense and I was having a harder time. 2:30 pm came and we left for Labor & Delivery, ah! Nerves!

4:30 pm...By the time the doctor showed up I had already been there for 2 hours (my least favorite part of the entire labor because it was miserable to be hooked up to monitors for those two hours while in moderate pain). Once Dr J arrived, he checked and saw I was 4 cm and 80% effaced (more progress - I started as a fingertip and 50% effaced at 2:30 am). He then went ahead and broke my water. They noticed meconium in the fluid which meant that NICU would be on call once the baby delivered and I wouldn't be able to hold her right away. He then asked if I wanted anything and although I thought I could try natural I really just wanted to get some sleep since I had 3 hours of sleep in the past 36 hours. I said, "Yes, please - get me the epidural."

6 pm...I was petrified, almost in tears when the anesthesiologist came in because I just didn't want to be the 1 in 2,000 women cases of things gone wrong. I could have cared less that it was an enormous needle. I got the epidural and it worked immediately on the right side and took a little maneuvering of my body to get the left side to work. The right side was much stronger, but I couldn't feel ANYTHING! It was heaven.

7:30 pm...I figured I should try and rest my eyes, especially before Big Brother. Dr. J had anticipated Claire's arrival around midnight, so he left to go get dinner, shower, rest (remember, I woke him up that morning at 2), etc. My new nurse, Meghan, had just come in and met me as the shifts changed. And I rolled over to my right side to try and close my eyes. As I rolled over I was face to face with the heartrate monitor machine and as I am looking at it I am noticing the wide range of bpm...from 200 all the way down to 50, nothing really seemed normal or consistent. So another nurse came in and checked to see if they couldn't readjust the monitor to get a good reading. Sure enough my nurse comes running in and is somewhat panicked. She grabs the oxygen mask faster than I can think and holy sh** I am wide eyed, panic stricken, with 15 nurses in my room, an emergency OB on call as they are hurrying to call my Dr J in...although there would be no way he'd make it in on time if it ended up an emergency C section. One nurse was on my right leg the other on my left, I was tossed and turned from my right side to my left (thank God I had an epi because all I could think of after the fact was holy crap if I had a contraction at that point - I was about 8.5 cm dilated). I kept hearing "emergency C section", "anterior lip", "we think it can be corrected"...I have the oxygen mask on and I am just trying to focus on slowing down my breathing and getting my body under my control. I am shivering like crazy, freaking out and scared to death that something terribly wrong was going to happen. My poor hubby was dead asleep at the time this all started and he woke up startled with all 15 nurses and chaos in the room as they are yelling at him to fold up the bed and get out of the way. He looks as if (so I'm told later) that he's going to pass out.

7:45/50pm...The "I think it can be corrected" comment I overhead worked with some pushing by me and hands in low places...but her heartrate immediately got back up to 135-145 and things were perfectly fine. I just was praying my doctor would be arriving soon before it would happen again. I asked everyone in there probably 3 times is it going to happen again, and they kept saying no. Was that the truth or just a satisfying answer to calm a panic stricken pregnant lady?

8:20pm...Dr. J arrives smiling and saying "Geez I can't get away from you two today" - we've been very needy all day! He walks in like nothing happened, looks at the heartrate records and just goes on his business checking me (I'm now about 9 or 9.5 cm). I push 2 contractions to see where we were and he says he's going to have me relax for an hour and let her move down a little further, but we're almost ready.
WHAT? Almost ready, I though you said around midnight and it's 8:30. It then hits me as very real! Very, very real!

8:30-9:30 pm Tim and I spend it holding hands praying and hoping everything is smooth from now on. We actually put Big Brother on for about 30 minutes before I started to push. I could feel the pressure with every contraction, but still felt wonderful with the epi. I knew she was ready to come out!

9:30 pm...Dr. J arrives again, Meghan comes in and Tim is there. I push through 2-3 contractions, and Meghan calls NICU and an additional nurse. By 9:55 pm baby Claire Elisabeth enters the world SCREAMING, strong, and pink. Her cord was wrapped around her neck which could have been part of the issue earlier. She was moved to the table where NICU checked her out and made sure the meconium was not effecting her in any way. OH MY GOSH, we have a daughter. I did ask, "does she have 10 toes and 10 fingers?" because one of our ultrasound pictures showed 6 toes on a foot and I was a little worried about it. But to no avail, she's perfect, beautiful, and healthy!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Doggie Fun with Daddy

Tim LOVES his boys...

and when I say love, I mean LOOOVEEEEE!

Here are some cute pictures with Tim and the boys:

And just because I love them too, I've gotta share this one...

A few days out from the EDD...

...and I am most likely in early labor, right now! So, if you plan on entering the pool - a big hint might be in the next two days...

Yesterday afternoon I started feeling the "cramps" which I just attributed to crampiness...not really realizing until my mom asked if I was timing them. Sure enough they were coming every 7-10 minutes apart. I went home and went to bed since I knew I had a doctors appointment in the morning.

Fast forward to this morning - I went to the docs and was checked (1 cm! yay some progress). But I was still having contractions. I went ahead and headed into school to get some last things done for my sub.

Once I got home I realized what was going on and went into total nesting mode - yes I scrubbed the bathroom like crazy, had Tim put things in the attic, finished packing for the hospital just in case, took the dogs for a walk to see if they continued (I had about 3 on the walk), put things away, and did a load of laundry (towels, shower curtain, and rugs).

Now I am sitting around trying to figure out when to call my doctor and see what he thinks, haha. My back is starting to hurt with them which is totally scaring me to death.

Tim is switching the stuff in both of our cars as I type and he's going to install the carseat in the Pilot.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Tuesday = 39 weeks and 3 days

So we are four days out...Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, and then Saturday.


Is labor in the forecast?:
Yes...I am having major Braxton Hicks - daily. Sometimes they seem to be almost timeable which gets a little scary. I think I did have ONE REAL contraction in the middle of the night (Sunday night), but it was just one and I was able to go back to sleep.

I think today I plan on taking the pups on a few walks - they will get lucky that mommy is getting uncomfortable and slowly ready to have Claire come out.

Crafty - what the heck?:
Yes I am being crafty these last couple days, just because. I am bored and I really don't feel like doing any school work.

School bound?:
I plan on going up today soon...but I have a feeling I may push it back until tomorrow. We'll see. I need to drop off my binder of things...just in case things happen before Monday.

The Baby Pool?:
Did you play? The name of the game is babyclairebrady.

Boys, how are they fairing?
: Well, both pups are anxiously anticipating the arrival of Miss Claire. Look at Sullivan...I caught him hanging in her room BY HIMSELF, sleeping the other day. Then this morning I walked into her room to find 6 stuffed animals scattered around her room. No, none of them were destroyed, just hanging out. I think he was looking for the bunny he keeps wanting to play with, but I positioned it nicely in the crib so he couldn't find it!

What happened during Saturday's Full Moon Hype?:
Well Sweet C decided to be super lazy Friday (half the day) through Saturday night and I really started to worry. We called Dr. J and headed into Labor & Delivery to get monitored. Sure enough 9 pm like usual she began moving and doing her thing...but seriously all day I barely felt her and it was very unlike her. The doc didn't want me to wait because going in at 11 pm would have been silly when they could check me immediately. Sure enough Sunday and Monday she moved like normal and I definitely do not feel stupid or silly for going in because looking back she moved very minimal on Saturday compared to both Sunday and Monday. I've read too many stories about babies dropping and the cord being too short and it's too late by the time mom's determine the movement has slowed completely and stopped. So sad...I have insurance for a reason! So I am okay with our decision of going in. Again Tim felt at ease with another practice run!

Newborn Photography?:
I have decided on Kim Flores Photography in Catonsville. I am obsessed. I cannot wait for that session and I am totally thrilled with her work that I can't even question the cost. They will be priceless images!

Today's Agenda:

Maybe go to school
Getting Tim to go to PNC with me so we can open up a joint account and figure out our Money Management Plan before Sweet C arrives.
Putting things in the attic
Finish packing the hospital bag
Sweep and maybe clean the sofas
Get Tim to put shelves in the China Cabinet he refinished so I can organize and put the china away.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Gloomy Monday

It was raining off and on today. Sometimes stormy rain, sometimes torrential downpour rain, and sometimes it was sunny.

Tim & I went to Old Navy to get some lounge pants, for me, and JCrew to get some school clothes, for him.

Then we came home to eat lunch.

Then I went back out to get the rest of the supplies I needed to finish making a ruffle bum onesie - AHH, it's so adorable.

We bought iPhones today and combined our Verizon bill - YAY we're saving nearly $60 a month this way!!!

Tim made Ranch Chicken Sandwiches for dinner, yum!

Then I watched the Bachelor Pad while I made this adorable Taggie Blanket. It's so cute. I am going to make a few more for gifts! These are the two DIY instructions I used to make them.: What Rachel Made Today Blog and Mamasdoodles Blog.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

The 1 Week Countdown...

...until the due date! That obviously doesn't mean she'll be here by then, but I am going to chronicle the next week with how I am feeling.

that would be a
Yesssss, 39 weeks.

The average gestational age of babies is 40 weeks hence the 40 week due date. That's not to say it possible to go before or even after.

irritable & hungry

Weather: humid - sprinkling currently. Mid to high 70's right now though, but it's not comfortable outside.

Outfit: athletic shorts and a tshirt that barely fits over the bump.

Baby Movement: She's up here and there, definitely not moving as much the past two or three days and I am wondering if she's dropped because sometimes the upper part, under my boobs, it's empty. Hmmmm.... I also am wondering if she's still head down because sometimes it feels like she's transverse (sideways) which kind of scares me.

What I've done today so far:

I was tossing and turning for a couple hours starting at 3:30 am-5:00 am until I fell asleep until 7:30 am.
I woke up and ate a bowl of multi-grain cheerios (a very generous helping I must admit).
I was still hungry so I grabbed two pieces of cinnamon raisin toast and some apple slices with caramel.
I then took the boys on a W (which means walk because if we say it they get too excited). We went on a really long waaaallllkkkk. They are now sleeping.
I then straightened up the basement a little well organized messy piles of STUFF. To throw away, to sell, and to put in the attic.
I watched and criticized Tim in his "painting/staining" techniques. He then had me put on a mask and do it. I then got too hot outside and said I couldn't breath, so he is now outside again painting the china cabinet. I really like it, he does not.
I am starving so I am searching the web to see if starvation is a sign of labor...
I am currently baking a Totino's pizza - yes those cheapo pizzas that I used to eat in college all the time. It has 760 calories, gross!
But when it's finished cooking, I will eat the entire thing...
We also went to dinner with Mimi & PopPop in Old EC...

Eyes of my boys - aren't they precious!?

Friday, August 12, 2011

Moon Phase Births

Well I was born on a Monday during a New Moon phase and Tim was born on a Monday during a Full Moon phase. Hmmm...might Baby Claire show up on Monday, August 15th (a full moon) or Monday, August 22nd? I am hoping not Monday August 29th (a new moon phase) just because I don't feel like waiting that long after my due date!

Who will she be more like...Mommy or Daddy???

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Today is the Feast of Saint Clare
We were wondering if Baby Claire might want to make her arrival on August 11th because Saint Clare died on August 11, 1253.

Given the fact it's already 4:33 pm, I am not thinking labor will start and end within the next 7.5 hours before the day ends.

Well there is always the full moon on Saturday that might do it...

Wino Wednesday Last Night

I unfortunately did not partake, but I did attend. I wanted so badly to eat the sushi and drink a glass of sangria! Oh well. We were celebrating our dear friend Katy's engagement that happened, surprisingly to her & us, over the weekend. We are thrilled for them both and can't wait for next summer as we have lots of friends with weddings in the makings!

Tim's Friend John 4-14-12
Linda A 6-9-12
Katie P 7-7-12
Liz F 9-15-12
Katy F ???

Yay for loveeee and weddings and lives full of happiness!

Monday, August 8, 2011

Beach Bound at 38 Weeks

Mimi and I went to the beach for a long weekend. I guess you could call it the calm before the storm.

Why did Tim not come? Well for one we weren't sure what to do with the dogs and for two he had just finished summer school and wanted to hang out around the house being lazy. He did actually do quite a lot of work that weekend, insulating our attic and finishing the floor so we have a TONNNNNNN of space to store things. We've started putting thing up there that we do not need for a while, like the highchair, older baby clothes, our off season clothes, wreaths for holidays, and other holiday decor as well as "junk", unfortunately.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Dog Training 101

Today I took the monsters out to Meemaw & PopPop's house to let them run around a little and play with their buddies. Monty paired up with Baxter (Bax totally is dominant over Mont which is shocking to me) and Sully partnered with Gabriel, literally...if you know what I mean. (Like we all thought Gabes got neutered but clearly he's still into Sully.) My mom and I took the three blondies on a walk with their gentle leaders and I must say - my two out-shined the "prized" Canine Companion, Gabriel, by far. I was shocked by how well behaved my knuckleheads were and how wonderful they were behaving. Monty only growled at Gabes two or three times today.

Which brings me to TONIGHT. We are meeting with a dog trainer (a behaviorist) to figure out how to "fix" or "treat" Monty's issues: dominance & aggression & possessiveness. We aren't completely sure what it is, but it needs to be addressed, preferably now before we have the baby join our family.

Through searching on the internet I found Pet-U-Cation Training & Rehab Center. I am praying it's worth it and Alma the trainer we've been paired with for the initial consultation works well with both pups.

As I sent her my request and the "background" info I explained to her our list is long because we know we need to fix Sully and his barking and Monty with jumping, but honestly we are okay with all the other bad things sticking as long as we figure out the Monty Mean Boy issue.

So the trainer said Monty is a doll and if I really think he's aggressive I need to come see the dogs she works with on a daily basis. She said dog & human aggression are two totally different forms of aggression and Monty just has a dominance factor to him and will not tolerate "rude" or unruly dogs near him, hence his snaps. She mentioned to us that we should just keep Monty on a leash when he meets other dogs (new ones) or particularly doesn't like certain dogs. We also learned that we should discipline Sullivan when he gets too out of hand with Monty and we can tell Mont is annoyed. We, Tim & I should be the alphas who will PROTECT our boy Mont no matter what. So that's the plan from now on. He actually has been doing great at home. Sullivan knows to stay away at certain times.

So we are happy it only cost us $35 as opposed to $250 for dog training and we're pleased Monty had wonderful manners when the dog trainer walked in. She did say Monty is not as "comfortable" as Sully is...figures!