Saturday, December 31, 2011

2011....it's been a great year!

What a difference a year makes.... last New Years I was ready to throw 2010 in the trash and start over. This year, I look back happily at 2011 because we brought home our baby girl and I learned so many things about myself.

~  I am stronger than I give myself credit for.  I can give myself injections, get blood taken 3 times a week, carry a baby to term and even give birth.

~  I am a good mom.  At least I think I am and that's all that matters, right?  If Emily is crying, 9 times out of 10, I am the one who can calm her down.

~  I can move 10 hours from my family and friends and be ok.  I miss everyone terribly, but as long as I have Steve and Emily- I am happy.

~ I can go into public with spit up on my shirt, no makeup, and greasy hair and not give a shit (this is probably because of sleep deprivation but whatever).

~  I can function on 2 hours of sleep if my baby needs me to.

As I sit here on the eve of 2012, I look forward to the new year and I can't wait to see what it will bring for our family.

Happy 2012 everyone!

Friday, December 30, 2011

2 month appointment

First off, thank you to everyone who commented and emailed me about yesterdays post.  Your support never ceases to amaze me. 

We had the dreaded 2 month vaccination appointment yesterday and all in all, things went pretty well.

Emily was all smiles and coos at the Dr which I loved to see.  She weighs 13 lbs 1 oz (93rd percenile) is 24.3 inches long (96th percentile) and her head circumference is 39.5cm (80th percentile) I guess I shouldn't have been all that worried about her not getting enough food, right?

The Dr believes her reflux isn't being treated properly with the medicine she is currently on (prevacid) so he is switching her to zantac.  We will start that in a couple of days.  He thinks this is why she has trouble breathing out of her nose and is fussy after feedings. 

He mentioned her crooked neck and told us to start working on it at home with lots of tummy time and manually stretching her neck to the other side.  Apparently a helmet could be needed if this isn't corrected because her head will start to flatten on the side she is always laying on. He said a physical therapist might be a good idea.

Then came the shots....terrible.  She was so happy until that first needle went in- her face went from smiley to shock, anger and pain in about 2 seconds.  She screamed bloody murder until I was able to pick her up and hold her.  She finally calmed down and was so worked up that she just went right to sleep in my arms. 

Poor baby girl.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Breastfeeding

Will I ever figure this out??  This post is going to be a bit of a brain dump and if you have any suggestions at all- I am all ears, seriously.

Ok let's start at the beginning- if you've been reading for any period of time, you know Emily had/has reflux and colic.  This made breastfeeding hard because I began to feel like I was causing these problems.  She would scream when she ate, after she ate, when she wasn't eating.  If I was holding her, she would cry for the boob- all. the. time.  She never slept because she was always crying.  She had gas so I tried to quit eating dairy, gassy veggies, tomatoes, etc.  I felt like I couldn't eat anything and worried all the time that I was causing her to be in this much pain.  Any time she nursed she would let the milk run out the side of her mouth and I would end up with a lap full of milk at the end.  I wasn't sure if this was a latch problem or just her being lazy. But again, I was worried that she wasn't getting enough food because she always seemed hungry.

So I caved, I started giving her formula.  She ate it with no problem but still wanted to nurse, so we did both.  Mostly nursing during the day and giving formula at night.

Then the move came and my supply basically went away.  She wanted to nurse but I didn't think she was getting enough so I gave her more and more formula until that was all she was getting.  I felt terrible, and I still do because I feel like she wants to nurse.

Now that she has been strictly on formula she is even more gassy and has cradle cap and red, dry bumps on her face.  I'm not sure if this is related to formula?

So, my questions are:

~ Can I get my supply back?  I still feel the tingling every once in awhile when she is really crying and if I squeeze, drops of milk will come out. (TMI, sorry.)  How can I go about doing this?  More pumping, taking something?  Have any of you done this?

~ If I can get my supply back what do I do about her letting milk spill out of her mouth?

~  Should I just stick to formula and try soy based to see if it makes her less gassy?  Do any of you have a formula that you think is great in this situation? We have tried the "gentle" formula from both similac and enfamil, both make her gassy. Side note:  When she eats from a bottle she makes a loud clicking noise with her tongue, we can't figure out how to stop this and I wonder if that is what is causing her gas issue?  We use avent bottles, is there a kind that might be better?

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

After Christmas Wrap Up

I am so behind on my blogging!

~ My sweet Emily turned 2 months old on Christmas! She is getting so big and she is strong! She cries much less, usually only when she is hungry, gassy, or overly tired.  Her personality continues to amaze me- she is very vocal and loves to "talk". She slept 8 hours straight last night.  It was very nice, but I woke up at 3:00am and I was worried!  

2 months old! Look at that belly!


our favorite Christmas present

~  The Lost Stork is 1 year old!  I started blogging on Christmas last year at my in-laws house, what a difference a year makes. We were just beginning IVF and now we have a beautiful baby girl.  I am beyond grateful for so many things- IVF science, this community, my family and friends, and of course my supportive husband. 

~  We are getting settled into our new house and Steve started work with his dad today.  I am so proud of him and I am so happy that we are taking on this new adventure together.

I hope you all had a wonderful holiday!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

I'm still here!

Is it Thursday?  I honestly don't know what day or time it is since the move.

First off, I want to apologize for my lack of commenting, I've been reading all of your blogs on my phone and there has been some huge stuff happening in blog-land in the past week!  I am going to try to go back and catch up one of these days...

We made it to Pennsylvania! It took us two days to get here but we made it!  Emily did great in the car and our house is awesome (we saw it for the first time when we arrived on Tuesday).  A huge thanks to our parents for helping us load everything up and for getting everything ready for us to move right in- you guys are the best!  All of our new neighbors helped us unload the truck and we even got a homemade meal brought to us on our first night here.  What a great place to live!

We are slowly but surely getting everything unpacked and put away.  Our tree is up and our stockings are hung, we are so blessed this Christmas.



Monday, December 12, 2011

Saying goodbye

Only 8 days until we move.

This week will be spent seeing friends and saying goodbye.  Over the years, these awesome people have seen me through some very hard times; bad relationships, the passing of my mother, and my miscarriages.  They have also been there to celebrate with me; meeting Steve, getting engaged, getting married, and of course successful IVF and Emily's birth. We have laughed and cried together and shared many ups and downs. These are the best friends a person could have and I thank my lucky stars that they are mine. I am going to miss you all very much.




Then comes my family.  We will be celebrating Christmas on the 17th and it will be so bittersweet.  I will be overjoyed to celebrate Emily's first Christmas with my family but sad that we will be saying goodbye.  I will miss my family more than I can say- their support and love mean the world to me and have made me who I am today.  I love you all so much!

Friday, December 9, 2011

TGIF

It's been a long week in this house!  I'm happy the weekend is here even though we will spend most of it trying to juggle Emily and packing.

I didn't get to TVT yesterday so I guess this would be TVF (Thought Vomit Friday)....

{1} We took Em to see Santa this week.  It's her first Christmas, how could I pass up taking her to the mall to have her picture taken?? She was so sleepy. (side note: the young man taking the pictures smelled like a combination of BO and cigarettes, awesome.)




















{2}  I am tired of pet hair.  No matter how much I vacuum it still ends up on Emily and it drives me crazy.  If you have any tips for lessening pet hair- do tell.

{3} Speaking of pets, Emily noticed Sadie (our dog) for the first time last night.  She stared and stared and watched everywhere she went.  So cute.

{4}  It's not feeling or looking much like Christmas at our house....I keep seeing all of your Christmas tree pictures and I wish I had mine up! I am just hoping we get our tree up before Christmas day in our new house. It will be so fun to decorate and listen to Christmas music with Emily and Steve, I am so looking forward to that.

{5}  I am in love with smartwool socks.  They are perfectly warm and cute and everyone should have at least one pair. I also really really want one of their cardigans but they are soooo expensive (a girl can dream).



















{6} So sweet.




















{7}  Steve and I love this chicken pot pie recipe. Make it, I promise you'll like it too.

Ingredients
  • 1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breast halves - cubed
  • 2 cups frozen mixed veggies
  • 1/3 cup butter
  • 1/3 cup chopped onion
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon celery seed
  • 1 3/4 cups chicken broth
  • 2/3 cup milk
  • 2 (9 inch) unbaked pie crusts
Directions
1.     Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C.)
2.     In a saucepan, combine chicken and frozen veggies. Add water (or leftover chicken broth) to cover and boil for 15 minutes. Remove from heat, drain and set aside.
3.     In the saucepan over medium heat, cook onions in butter until soft and translucent. Stir in flour, salt, pepper, and celery seed. Slowly stir in chicken broth and milk. Simmer over medium-low heat until thick. Remove from heat and set aside.
4.     Place the chicken mixture in bottom pie crust. Pour hot liquid mixture over. Cover with top crust, seal edges, and cut away excess dough. Make several small slits in the top to allow steam to escape.
5.     Bake in the preheated oven for 30 to 35 minutes, or until pastry is golden brown and filling is bubbly. Cool for 10 minutes before serving.

Linking up with E Tells Tales

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

6 weeks postpartum

I had my 6 week follow up visit with my midwife and left her office *almost* in joyful tears.

It was so good to see her again and she was so happy to see Emily.  She sees a ton of patients a day and delivers a ton of babies, but she remembered my delivery and our background of losses and IVF and we talked about it while she checked me out.  I'm so thankful I had her deliver our baby.

At the end of my visit she gave me a huge hug and wished us the best with our move, then she ran and got one of her nurses to show off Emily's hair.

I felt emotional (in a good way) being there with Emily. I thought about all of my appointments with her growing away in my belly and how nervous and excited I was. I remember the day we went in and set up my induction like it was yesterday. 

I can't believe she is 6 weeks old already, where does the time go?

Monday, December 5, 2011

my crafty sister

Everyone should go check out my sister Kelsey's new etsy shop!

She is making Christmas stockings and after the new year she will be making American Girl doll clothes.

Here is an example- so cute!




While we are on the subject of craftiness, I am newly addicted to pinterest.  There are so many good ideas out there and it makes me wish I was just a tad more creative!

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Probiotics and Chiropractic

I'm knocking on wood as I type this post.

For the past week, Emily has turned a corner- a less-colicky, awesome, smiling baby corner. 

I can't be 100% sure, but I think this change in her is due to 1) me taking probiotics (thank you Courtney for the suggestion) and 2) taking her to the chiropractor.

Since Emily was born, she kept her head tilted at a very strange angle any time she was laying or sitting in her car seat- it looked so uncomfortable! The chiropractor did a thermal scan on her spine and found that her poor little neck was out of alignment along with another spot in her mid-back.  Now don't freak out, they don't adjust her like they would you or me.  It's mostly a lot of stretching and massage. She loves it and her neck is slowly but surely straightening out and she seems so much happier!

I started taking probiotics last week and I noticed a change in Emily within a week.  She was much less fussy at night and didn't scream like she was in pain anymore.  Don't get me wrong, she still cries, but it is so much better than it was.

Here is an article if you're interested.

And now let's all knock on wood.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Amazingness

This was my day yesterday....I'm so in love.

so peaceful


Sadie is never far away from Em

loving playtime

oh the hair!
hold on tight little one

Thursday, December 1, 2011

TVT

It's that time of week...TVT!

*  Ok ladies- I am in need of recommendations for baby carriers. We have tried the baby bjorn- she doesn't like it and it's really hard to get on! Moby- I've tried it a few times and she squirms like she doesn't have enough room and ends up crying like she's in pain. Are there any other good carriers out there that you would recommend?

*  Emily has gotten back to regular naps and sleeping periods at night.  It seems like any time we take her out of the house to run errands or appointments she gets thrown off track and wants to stay awake for long periods of time.  I think the excitement of Thanksgiving may have been part of the reason she didn't want to sleep.

*  Still haven't started packing.....18 days until the big move!  We have so much to get done in such a short amount of time, I'm trying not to panic. 

*  We had Emily's baptism last Sunday and it went really well.  She looked so cute in her little gown and slept through most of it.  Our families were there and it was great to see everyone!

*  The past two nights we have given Emily a bottle of sensitive stomach formula instead of breast milk and she slept much longer and didn't cry!  I'm trying to decide if I should switch to formula full time or just at night.  She really loves nursing for comfort and I don't think I'm ready to give that up.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Awww shucks.

I am sorry this has taken me so long....last week (I think) I was awarded the Liebster Bog award by my sweet friend Baby Hopes.  I love this girl, she always has something sweet and supportive to say and hopefully we will become real life friends very soon!   Baby Hopes has three little ones on the way (one in her belly and two waiting to come home through adoption) and I could not be more excited for her! If you want to read an amazing story of strength just check out her blog here. Thank you Baby Hopes for thinking of me for this award!

This Award is given to bloggers who have less than 200 followers, all in the spirit of fostering new connections. Liebster is German & means ‘dearest’ or ‘beloved’ but it can also mean ‘favorite’. The idea of the Liebster award is to bring attention to blogs with less than 200 followers.
Here are the rules:
1. Thank the giver and link back to the blogger who gave it to you.
2. Reveal your top five picks and let them know by leaving a comment on their blog.
3. Copy and paste the award on your blog.
4. Hope that the people you’ve sent the award to forward it to their five favorite bloggers and keep it going!
It's always hard for me to pick who to give an award to because I love all of my blog friends equally. Here are five girls I love so much and have supported me through IF, pregnancy and now being a first time mom.  Check out their blogs!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Counting sheep

All of my posts have been downers lately, I can't help it.  I promised myself I would be honest on this blog and that's what I'm doing.

I feel like I have no idea what I'm doing and today I broke down and cried for a long time.  And now I feel guilty for crying  because I waited so long for this baby and I love her more than anything in the world. 

From 7:30am yesterday to 6:30am today, Emily has only slept about 5 hours- the whole day and night. 

Has anyone else had this problem?  We tried everything to get her to sleep and she is not having it.  Sometimes she cries but sometimes she just sits here wide awake. When we do get her to sleep it is very restless and she wakes up as soon as we try to put her down.

I feel so bad for her because I know she has to be exhausted and I doubt it's good for a 5 week old to be awake this much.

Help?

Saturday, November 26, 2011

1 month old!

I can't believe our little girl is one month old already!  This month there have been a lot of ups and downs emotionally and physically- which from what I've heard is totally normal (whew!).  We have been dealing with the reflux and colic the best we can.  For the most part, we have a system down so it's becoming somewhat bearable. 

Emily at 1 month:

*  She has outgrown her newborn outfits, she is too long for them already!

*  She is eating about 3 oz every 3 hours during the day

*  The longest she has slept at night is about 4.5 hours

*  She has started to smile, follow things with her eyes, and makes some pretty cute sounds when she's happy

*  Everyone thinks she looks like her daddy :)

*  Right now her eyes are a very pretty dark blue


*  She loves using her hands to grab fingers or anything in her line of sight

*  I'm amazed at how strong her neck is!  She can lift her head and hold it up for a few seconds at a time, especially when she's mad and ready for food

*  She loves listening to Adele

*  Her hair is often the topic of conversation everywhere we go

Happy 1 month birthday sweet Emily! We are so happy to have you in our lives!


This picture captures her personality perfectly....I think we're in trouble.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving

I am thankful for....

my sweet baby Emily Bonnie, the most perfect miracle I could have ever asked for

my wonderful husband Steve, I thank my lucky stars every day that I met him

our families, who are always there supporting and encouraging us

modern medicine, without IVF Emily might not be in our lives

our health, happiness, the roof over our heads and the food in our cabinets

and last but definitely not least, I am thankful for all of my wonderful blog friends who have helped me through so much in the past year.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

TVT (on Wednesday)

I started writing my TVT post and then I realized it's only Wednesday...geesh.  I'm not turning back now so here's my TVT on Wednesday.

*  You have to go check out MODG.  This blog makes me laugh and laugh and laugh.  I know you will too, so go check her out.

*  I am very excited for Thanksgiving this year.  I am thankful for so many things- most of all I am beyond grateful to have Emily here for her first Thanksgiving.

*  We have 26 days until the move and I haven't packed one box or found a realtor to sell our house. Someone tell me how to find the time.

*  I am going to attempt the moby wrap today. You all have convinced me I can do it. I have watched the video, read the manual, and Steve even practiced with a 2 liter of pop.  Yes, he really did.

*  Merchandise for babies with colic is the way to make money.  Come to think of it, it's just like merchandise for IF sufferers.  We will try anything, no matter how ridiculous or crazy it sounds.  Because we just want it to stop. 

That's all I have folks.  I hope you all have a very happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

True Life...

...I don't know the last time I showered.

ok, this isn't totally true, I showered yesterday...I think. 

What day is it again?

It's amazing how quickly times goes when you're home with your newborn. 

Here is a peek into our days at home: 

Wake up (if you can really call it being awake), change and feed the baby. 
Hopefully put her down to sleep again without too much crying.
Try to remember to eat something and drink some water.
Try to remember to go to the bathroom.
Try to remember to let the dog out.
Lay down and pray to God that she sleeps just a little longer.
Oh wait, I have to pump. Damn it.  Get back up, pump.
Now lay down and really pray to God that she sleeps a little longer.
Shit. She's up.
Shush her, give her a pacifier and pray she falls back to sleep.
Ok good, now lay back down for about 10 minutes.
She's up again.
Change diaper and feed her.
Repeat previous items over again.

This makes time go super fast and is somehow the most tiring thing I have ever done in my life.  Most days (ok, every day) I stay in my sweats and t-shirt and to be totally honest, I stay in the same clothes for days at a time.  Nice, I know. 

Nights are a different story altogether.

Steve gets home and takes the baby so I can somewhat relax.
Try to make dinner and eat...usually with one hand, balancing plate on lap while holding the baby.
Try to watch a show on DVR....until the nightly screaming begins.
Pause the show, take turns walking, bouncing, shushing, burping, and even attempting to reason with the baby.
When she calms down and starts to fall asleep the discussion on 'should we try to lay her down?' begins.
Start the vacuum sound track, lay baby down, hold breath and wait.
On a good night, she sleeps.

Some days I feel like I'm getting the hang of this mom thing and other (most) days I feel like I have no clue what the F I'm doing.  But I'm figuring it out (with Steve's help of course) and I'm loving every minute!

A couple of side notes/questions:

A few people have suggested taking Emily to a chiropractor who is experienced in treating babies with colic.  Have any of you tried this? Thoughts?

Probiotics- I want to start taking them, will any brand work? 

Moby wrap- this thing confuses and scares me, any tips on this contraption?

Monday, November 21, 2011

The things we do for colic....

First off, happy anniversary to my better half!  Two years ago today we walked down the aisle and said 'I do' and it was one of the best days of my life.  I am so lucky to have Steve in my life.

Now, on to baby things.

A baby with colic is hard.  I mean really, really hard.  And a baby with colic and reflux is even harder. I'm sure you are all tired of reading my crying baby posts, but this post might be helpful to any other new moms out there who find themselves with a colicky baby.

These are the things we have tried to keep Emily from crying- some work better than others and with colic, I've learned that one thing might work one day and not work the next- you just never know what might calm them down from day to day.

- Car rides: we tried this first, it was 12:00am and Emily had been screaming for 4 hours.  We were actually scared of some of the noises she was making. I am not exaggerating, when she gets in one of her colic fits, she screams bloody murder- it is not just a cry.  So naturally we called Steve's mom in PA.  Even though there wasn't anything she could really do for us it helped to call her and make sure we weren't doing any damage to our daughter (thanks mom!).

- The vacuum:  Emily loves the vacuum.  Sometimes she can be in the middle of a 2 hour screaming fit and if we turn on the vacuum she immediately gets quiet and her eyes glaze over like she's in a trance.  Last night after 5 hours of crying we downloaded a vacuum sound from itunes and we played it all.night.long.  It's amazing. (Needless to say, my sleep wasn't that great listening to a vacuum running all night- but that was fine with me!)
- Gripe water:  sometimes it works, sometimes it does nothing.  But we love when it works.

- Swaddling: from birth to about 2 weeks Emily loved being swaddled and it would put her to sleep.  Now she hates it and wants her arms free.

- Dishwasher: We found this cure on accident one night.  Steve was walking around with Emily while she was crying and he walked into the kitchen where the dishwasher was running.  She got quiet almost right away.  That night, we took her bassinet into the kitchen and ran the dishwasher over and over, hallelujah she slept!

There have been nights that we are crying (well I am at least) cussing under our breath (or out loud) while other nights all we can do is laugh uncontrollably (due to lack of sleep). I am so thankful I have Steve as a partner in this parenting thing, it's hard work and I don't know how anyone does it alone.

If anyone has any other helpful hints- please share!!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

TVT

In case you're new to it, TVT = Thought Vomit Thursday, a bullet point post for those of us who are brain dead by the time Thursday rolls around.

* Emily has both reflux and colic.  Having just one of these awful conditions was not good enough for our little over achiever.  Gripe water is our new best friend.

* My amazing husband let me sleep through the night last night (he is simply the best).  I think he was tired of the emotional crying brought on by sleep deprivation....or, he just loves me.

*  Steve, Emily and I are moving to PA in mid December!  Steve's parents live there and Steve is going to be learning his dad's business so he can take over when his dad retires.  Big changes are coming and we can't wait!

*  I have recently found myself watching Judge Judy midday.  Yes, you read that correctly.  What is wrong with me?

*  It is 6:00am.  Pre-baby I would still be sleeping soundly. Post-baby I am sitting on my couch, pumping, typing this post with one hand, and watching my baby sleep in her swing.  I wouldn't trade this for anything.

* TMI alert... I am sick. and. tired. of wearing pads.  Seriously, when does the bleeding stop?

Love to you all, happy Thursday!

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Newborn pictures

The first four pictures were taken at the hospital when Emily was only 2 days old.  The rest of the photos were taken the other day when she was 2 weeks old.  So sweet!  I feel like she is changing so fast! I never knew it was possible to love something so much.








Another post on crying...

Well, my blog is all about what we are going through....so here is another post on crying because that is our life right now.

First off, we took Emily to the Dr on Friday and she is healthy and normal (whew!)  She does have blocked tear ducts so her eyes have been getting goopy especially with all of the crying.  Poor sweet baby girl.

Secondly, thank you all so much for the support and comments over the past few days- they help so much and make me feel a little less crazy.

During one of Emily's many crying fits this weekend, Steve was sorting through some things in her room that we brought home from the hospital.  He starts laughing.  I asked him what was so funny and he showed me a DVD titled- "The Period of PURPLE Crying" and right on the front of this DVD is this question- "Did you know your baby would cry like this?" 

Well, no- no I didn't. 

So we open up the booklet that comes with the DVD to see if there is some secret we are missing out on and this is what we learn.

The letters in PURPLE stand for:
Peak of crying- your baby will cry more each week.  the most at 2 months, then less at 3-5 months
Unexpected- crying can come and go and you don't know why
Resists soothing- your baby may not stop crying no matter what you try
Pain-like face- a crying baby may look like they are in pain, even when they are not
Long lasting- crying can last as much as 5 hours a day, or more
Evening- your baby may cry more in the late afternoon and evening

* babies can still be healthy and normal even if they cry 5 hours a day (while this is good to know....it scares the shit out of me...5 hours a day???)

In case any of you are interested, here is a website that talks a little more about this period of crying.
Period of Purple Crying

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Any ideas?

Well we had another night with Emily crying until 2am and it continued through today.

If anyone has any suggestions or ideas for us to try- please let me know.

Last night at her 9:00pm feeding she was very fussy.  After eating she dozed off for a few minutes and then woke up crying.  This went on all night- dozing off, waking up, crying, rooting and wanting more milk.  There were points during the night that she was crying uncontrollably, almost screaming.  We tried a pacifier, holding her in a  more upright position, bouncing, swaddling, walking around, her swing, we turned on the vacuum and that made her quit crying but she still wouldn't fall asleep.  This fussiness/crying has been going on for three nights now, before that she was pretty content and didn't have any problems sleeping.  I can't think of anything that has changed in the past few days. The crying happens both when I breastfeed her or give her a pumped bottle.

Before today, she had no problems going right to sleep after eating during the day.  She would eat every 2.5- 3 hours and wasn't fussy. She would then fall asleep for about 2.5 hours and I would wake her up so I could feed her and change her diaper and play.  Well today was a different story.  She has continued with the crying/screaming all day.  I feed her and she will fall asleep for maybe an hour and then she wakes up crying, rooting and wanting more milk.

She doesn't spit up very often and when she does it's not very much. I have noticed that she gets the hiccups a lot throughout the day. We have tried to sit her up after feeding and propping up one end of her bassinet.

Steve and I are lost on what to do at this point.  Am I supposed to feed her every hour like she wants? Do I need to cut certain foods out of my diet? If so how do I know what foods to stay away from? Does anyone have any ideas?

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

2 weeks old! (yesterday)

Emily is 2 weeks old!  In some ways, those 14 days went so fast and in other ways I feel like I've had her forever.  She is such a sweet girl and is already getting a little personality that I just love.



Today we had her first Dr. appointment and it went well.  She weighs 9lbs 1oz (up from 8lbs 2oz) and is 21 1/4 inches (up from 21 inches).  Everything looked good- we have a healthy, happy baby on our hands!

We have had a couple of rough nights this week.  For some reason Emily doesn't want to fall asleep after her 9:30/10:00pm feeding. After she eats she acts like she is still starving (rooting around and crying) and when I try to feed her more she doesn't want to eat.  She is wide awake and then gets very fussy and cries quite a bit.  When we finally get her to calm down and fall asleep we lay her in the bassinet and she wakes up and we start the whole process over again.  Last night she finally fell asleep at 2:00am.  Mom and Dad are very tired! 

She is not a fan of her swing or anything that requires strapping her in- so the car seat is not her favorite thing either.  She likes her play mat and staring at herself in the mirror.  She loves having her hair washed and the sound of running water. 

Steve and I are doing great, still getting into the groove of having a baby (I think it gets a little easier every day).  Everything takes just a little more planning and time but it is all so worth it.  We have never loved anything more than our little girl and we wouldn't trade these adjustments and sleepless nights for anything in the world.


Monday, November 7, 2011

My husband amazes me

I always knew that Steve would be a wonderful father.  He is patient, kind, and loving- everything you hope your child's father will be.  When I watch him with Emily I am so impressed with his natural ability to calm her down and make her smile.

And on top of being an awesome dad, he is still an awesome husband.

He gets up with Emily in the middle of the night when he knows I need more sleep.  He makes sure I am taking care of myself.  He reassures me that I am a good mom when I doubt myself.

I never thought it was possible to love him more than I already did....but I do.

Thank you Steve for always being here for me and now for our daughter.  I don't know what we would do without you. xoxo

Thursday, November 3, 2011

TVT here we go!

I'm jumping on the Thought Vomit Thursday train! TVT is basically a bullet point post spewing out everything drifting through your head without having to think much about creating an organized post.....enjoy!

*  I don't know what I would do without my Baby ESP app on my droid.  It seriously saves my life daily (hourly).  When sleep deprived, it's hard to remember what day it is or what time Emily ate last/had her diaper changed/was bathed.....etc.  I highly recommend this app for any new parents!!  The best part is Steve can sync his app to mine so we both know what the baby is doing all day long. Love.

*  I am finally starting to feel a bit more like myself (I think it's because I showered two days in a row).  When I was pregnant, I read and heard about the 'baby blues' but I didn't realize how insane you feel after giving birth.  I had anxiety pre-baby and for a week after having Emily I wasn't exactly anxious but was definitely overwhelmed.  Everything made me cry, I felt like I had no clue what I was doing, breast feeding was hard, I was overly tired, and my body felt like it had been beaten with a baseball bat.  So feeling like myself today is a huge step forward in my book.

*  Emily is funny, already.  She makes these sly faces like she knows what's going on, especially when Steve and I are talking about her or when she knows it's time to feed.  She also has the habit of waiting to pee after her diaper is off...(insert sly baby smile) I'm convinced she totally does this on purpose. I have a feeling she's going to be a little trickster when she gets older and I love it.

*  Along with breast feeding I have also been pumping.  This is mainly because being the only person who can feed the baby was really getting to me.  I'm sure some people will judge me, and I can't worry about that. With pumping, Steve can take some of the feedings and that makes me a happier and more sane mom.

*  I am trying to decide if I should keep my blog going.  It was a wonderful way to help me cope with IF/IVF and now, I'm not sure if anyone wants to hear about our life after IF.  I have met some wonderful people here who I am sure will be lifelong friends and I am so thankful for that.  What to do?

Happy Thursday!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Emily's birth story

We went to the hospital on October 24th at 5:00pm to begin the induction process,  at 7:30pm I was given cervidil to ripen my cervix and was 0 cm dilated, 60% effaced and at a -2 station.  Baby girl was monitored through the night while Steve and I tried to relax as much as we could.

At 6:30am on October 25th the cervidil was removed and I was still 0 cm, but had progress with effacement to 90%, and baby was still at a -2 station. 

At 7:30am I was started on an IV of pitocin and fluids.  Our midwife, Pam, explained that we would start the pitocin at 2ml and it would be increased by 2ml every half hour. 

After walking the halls, sitting/bouncing on a birthing ball, and going through some pretty intense contractions (wow!)- our midwife came in for another check.  At 10:00am I was finally dilated to 1cm and was still 90% effaced.  My pitocin level was 10ml and Pam decided to break my water- this was our official start to labor.  My water showed signs of thick meconium with particles.  This concerned Pam and she explained to us that since I had a large amount of meconium she would have the Neonatologist in the room for the birth to check the baby as soon as she was born.  She reassured us that this happens quite often with late babies but she wanted to be safe and take every precaution.  She also told me that my cervix was still very stiff and wasn't pliable and hinted that I could get an epidural at any time.  At this point, my contractions were very strong and were coming every 2 minutes and lasting about a minute but I was still going to try and labor without an epidural.

At 1:45pm I was examined again and I had only progressed to 2cm, 90% effaced, and a -1 station.  My pitocin level was 16ml and my contractions were so painful and intense.  Steve and I decided at that point to go ahead with the epidural.  Even though this wasn't in my birth plan, I did not want to risk having a c-section and our midwife thought the epidural would help to relax my cervix and get things moving in the right direction.  I was so glad I got it!!  I was able to take a nap and felt very relaxed and calm.

At 4:10pm our labor nurse (she was so amazing!) checked my progress and I was at 4cm, 100% effaced, the baby was at the 0 station, and my pitocin level was at 22ml.  The nurse "worked on" my cervix massaging and trying to stretch the scar tissue, she made some progress and said without the epidural this wouldn't be able to be done without extreme pain. A catheter was inserted and my IV fluids were upped because my blood pressure was very low, 96/58.

At 5:15pm our nurse came in for another check and again worked on my cervix, getting it to 8cm and very pliable.  She then lowered my pitocin to 14ml and told me to rest up.

I started feeling some pressure and contractions at 7:43pm, I wasn't sure why I could feel the contractions again so I asked our nurse if the epidural was wearing off.  She said no and then said I could be ready to go.  She went and got our midwife (who had delivered 4 other babies that day!) and I was at 10cm!

I felt very calm and ready to push.  Steve was right by my side encouraging me and so were our midwife, labor nurse, and our doula, Char.  I called them the 'A-Team', because they were all so fantastic.  In the beginning of pushing we were all joking around and it was a very light mood, I loved this. 

Pam (our midwife) explained to me that I was pushing in the exact way that I should and everyone was so positive and helpful, I honestly couldn't have asked for a better group of people to be there with me for my labor.

Then, things got very intense.  My contractions were so strong and I was in a lot of pain.  I remember thinking to myself that there was no way I was going to be able to do this.  I was given an oxygen mask and cold wash cloths were put on my neck and forehead. I ended up getting sick (I didn't expect this at all). Out of the corner of my eye I could see the Neonatologist and nurse from the NICU standing in the corner waiting.

At just the right time, Pam told me she could see the baby's hair and it was thick and black.  I was so happy and it gave me the push I needed to keep going.  I will never forget seeing her little head, (this part of my labor has been told over and over since she was born) I looked down and the first thing I saw was her tiny ear.  I excitedly said- Oh, she has Steve's ears! And I had quit pushing because I was so exhausted.  Pam and Char, (and I think everyone in the room) started shouting at me that I couldn't stop pushing.  At 9:22pm, I gave one last huge push and there she was, it was so surreal.

We had planned to have Steve cut the cord and have immediate skin to skin contact but this all went out the window so that we could make sure she was safe.  She was rushed to the warmer bed and the Neonatologist

The rest is kind of a blur.  The placenta was delivered, I was stitched up (2nd degree tear), and Steve let our parents know Emily had been born.

Even though our birth plan didn't turn out how we thought it would, I wouldn't trade any part of my labor for anything in the world.  We are so blessed to have this beautiful baby girl in our lives.

"Before you were conceived I wanted you. Before you were born I loved you. Before you were here for an hour I would have died for you. This is the miracle of life"

~author unknown

Monday, October 31, 2011

Perfection

Wow, what a whirlwind this week has been. 

There are so many emotions and thoughts going through my head, I can't even explain. Emily is a wonderful baby, perfect in every way!  Steve and I are so blessed to have her.

I can't really put together a coherent post right now so here are some bullet points

  • Emily is breast feeding and doing very well with it.  I have to use a nipple shield to get her to latch but that is fine with me.  It is scary not knowing how much she is eating and if she is getting enough milk.  I think feeding is the hardest part of being a mom so far. I had some issues with engorgement on my right side- holy painful.  I took ad.vil, did a lot of massaging, and pumped - it seems to be getting better.

  • Sleep is pretty much non-existent at this point.  Since she eats every 2-3 hours and it takes her about 30 minutes (or more) to eat, we spend most of our time in the recliner.  At first we were having trouble getting her to sleep in her bassinet but my sister gave me the best suggestion to warm up the mattress with a heating pad before putting her in it so it's nice and warm (we take the heating pad out before we put her in) this works like a charm!  (Thanks Kels!)

  • Like I mentioned earlier, I'm emotional....about everything.  It kills me when she cries.

  • Diapers, diapers, diapers. Just saying.

  • Steve has been the most amazing dad and husband through everything.  He has been getting up with me to help, at all hours of the night, and that makes things so much easier to handle.  I can't thank him enough for being such a great husband.  It is so wonderful to watch him with her and to see the pride in his eyes.

  • Our families have been so great and helpful, I can't thank them all enough!!
Thank you all for your kind comments, I will be back to checking all of your blogs soon!

I will leave you with a few pics of our sweet girl, stay tuned for Emily's birth story...




Wednesday, October 26, 2011

She's finally here!!!

Introducing....

Emily Bonnie

Born Tuesday, October 25, 2011 at 9:22pm

8 lbs 2 oz, 21 inches

Saturday, October 22, 2011

40 weeks 2 days

Guess what? I'm still pregnant. 40 weeks and 2 days to be exact, I guess you could say our stork is still lost!

To keep myself occupied, I've been walking every day and cleaning everything in our house.  Naps have been awesome and I went for a massage on Thursday. Last night Steve and I had our last pre-baby date night, we had a great time and spent most of the night talking about baby girl and trying to pin down her name. 

Our midwife called us on Thursday evening and said she had spoken to one of the doctors at the practice and they have agreed that if I don't go into labor on my own this weekend I will be induced on Monday/Tuesday.

This is a two step process.  We will stay at the hospital on Monday night and I will get cervidil to hopefully ripen my "difficult" cervix. Tuesday morning they will start me on an IV of pitocin to start contractions.  If all goes as planned we will have our baby girl in our arms on Tuesday!

Even though induction was not a part of our original plan, we know that we have to do whatever it takes to get our little girl here safely and if that means changing our plans then that is what we will do! 

Thank you all so much for your supportive comments and emails over the past few days, we appreciate it!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Due date fast approaching...

I'll be 40 weeks pregnant tomorrow and I don't think this little girl has any plans of coming on time.

We had our weekly midwife appointment today and there has been no change with my stubborn cervix.  When we were going through our IUI's and our IVF I remember the Dr. and nurses saying how "difficult" my cervix was and they had trouble with the procedures, but I didn't think anything of it at the time.  Last week it popped into my head to ask my midwife if this could be a reason that I'm not dilating and she thinks it could be. She called it cervical stenosis.

Thankfully, the non-stress test went well and baby girl is still active and having a great time in there.

So here we are, still waiting.  We will be going back next week to discuss induction if there still isn't any progress.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Still waiting...

Sorry for not updating more....I'm still here....still pregnant.

I've gotten a couple of emails and comments, so I thought I'd let you all know that baby girl still hasn't made her appearance.

Steve and I are anxious and excited for her arrival, and we hope it is very soon!

Thanks to everyone for checking on us ♥

Friday, October 14, 2011

Update

We had our midwife appointment today and still no dilation...my cervix is a trouble maker.  We go back next Wednesday to see if there is any progress.

Fingers crossed!!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

39 weeks!

I don't have a lot to report at 39 weeks.  I wake up every day and think to myself, "is today going to be the day??"

Size of baby: Baby girl is waiting to greet the world! She continues to build a layer of fat to help control her body temperature after birth, but it's likely she already measures about 20 inches and weighs a bit over 7 pounds, like a mini watermelon!

Sleep: I get my best sleep when I take naps.  I'm only working mornings this week and it has been a life saver! Nights are still a lot of tossing and turning, getting up to go to the bathroom and not being able to fall back to sleep.

Movement: Same as last week, her movement has slowed down a bit, but she still has her active times during the day and right before bed. 

Food cravings/aversions: I've been craving fruits and veggies a lot more and of course, still sweets.

What I am looking forward to: Meeting our daughter! I keep telling her she has so many great people out here that can't wait to meet her!

I have been feeling pretty good.  My hips are very sore but I'm taking this as a sign of progress and hoping that she is moving down to where she needs to be (although I hear every day at work that she hasn't dropped).  At our midwife appointment last Friday I was 80% effaced but not dilated at all.  We go back again tomorrow and I hope there has been some progress!  My bh contractions aren't as frequent as they used to be and when I do have them, they are a little stronger but still not anything super painful.

That's about it folks, I'll try to update with some belly pictures and info from our appointment tomorrow!

P.S.  I just want to say good luck to my blog friend Kelly, she is being induced today :)

Thursday, October 6, 2011

38 Weeks!

38 weeks pregnant, 2 weeks left.....or more......or less.

The most frequent question I'm asked is "Are you ready?"  Yes of course I'm ready!  I'm ready to meet this little wiggle worm that has been living inside me for months now.  I can't wait to see her face, kiss her cheeks, and tell her how much we love her.

Monday night I had a lot more bh contractions- they were coming about every 5-6 minutes, sometimes more and sometimes less.  Steve was starting to get a little worried and at one point he said, "Is she coming tonight??"  I wish you all could have seen his face, priceless.  Since then I've had consistent  bh so far, but nothing super painful and I've been feeling crampy. 

Size of baby: She weighs about 6.8 pounds and she's over 19 1/2 inches long (like a leek). She has a firm grasp and her organs have matured and are ready for life outside the womb. Yay baby girl!!

Sleep: I feel tired all the time! 


Movement: Her movement has slowed down a bit, but she still has her active times during the day and right before bed. 

Food cravings/aversions: I haven't had many cravings, but meat hasn't been sounding that great to me lately.

Belly button in or out: Well it's in between I suppose.  It sticks out a little and when I cough, sneeze or laugh it sticks out further.

Stretch marks: Nothing yet, I'm just waiting for them to pop up one of these days.

What I miss: Being able to move easily without all the cracking and popping joints.

What I am looking forward to: Meeting our daughter!

Belly Pic:



Monday, October 3, 2011

Godparents

Steve and I have talked a lot about who should have this important role in our baby's life and we have chosen two very special people to us. Two people who have been here for us through all the good and bad times and supported us no matter what. 

My sister Niki will be baby girl's Godmother.  I've looked up to my sister since I can remember and we have always been close. She is my best friend and the person I call first when something big happens in my life.  I know she will be a wonderful Godmother to our daughter because she already cares so much about her.  She asks about every doctor visit and cheers right along with us with every week that goes by.





Baby girl's Godfather is one of Steve's best friends, Ralph.  Since Steve doesn't have any siblings, he chose someone who is like a brother to him.  He and Ralph met in college and have been close friends ever since. 

After Steve and I met, Ralph and his wife Melissa were two of the first people he introduced me to.  They were so welcoming and friendly and I quickly saw why Steve cares so much for them. Ralph is the kind of guy you can always depend on and would do anything for his friends. He is a genuinely good person and I am so happy he is a part of our lives.




We feel very lucky to know these two amazing people and we know that our baby girl will love them just as much as we do.  

We appreciate your friendship, support and love more than you will ever know! Thank you for agreeing to be our little girl's Godparents!

Friday, September 30, 2011

Happy Friday!

We had our weekly midwife appointment yesterday and we started the weekly non-stress tests.  They hooked me up to the monitor and of course baby girl was napping.  They gave me a glass of water to drink to try to wake her up, but that didn't faze her, she kept right on sleeping.  So the next step was to use the "baby alarm clock" to wake her.  Wow did it make her jump!  The nurse was happy with her movement and increased heart rate so we moved on to our midwife appointment.  Nothing too exciting there, no dilation or effacement yet.  And the waiting continues!

Thursday, September 29, 2011

A Toast To RockStar

Happy 28 weeks to Josey, Charlie, and baby RockStar! 



When Oak emailed me and asked me to take part in this special "blog shower" for Josey, I thought to myself...only in this awesome blogging community would something like this happen...heck yes- I'm in!

Josey,
I'm so glad I "met" you through blogging.  You were one of the first IF blogs I found and it was great to feel a little less alone in everything I was going through.  I feel like I know you in real life and maybe one day the hubby and I will come out to beautiful CO and visit! 

I remember keeping my fingers crossed for you the day of your IUI and I just knew when I saw that picture of the blowing, snow covered roads that nothing was going to stop baby rockstar from being conceived!

I am very happy for you and I can't wait for your baby to be born! You and Charlie are going to be great parents!

And finally, here is the onesie I am sending you....




We wish you all the best from Illinois!!