Monday, November 3, 2014

A little fall

It seems like we've had a long go at summer this year.  It probably feels that way because we didn't really have a normal summer.  It was cooler than normal, with mostly steady rainfall.  My grass never even turned brown, and that's unusual for a St. Louis summer.  So summer kind of gently slipped into fall.  The other day we had 82 degrees.  It was Oct 26, and it was in the 80's.  And now we're supposed to get down to the 20's at night.  So, while we had a little bit of fall, we packed in a few fall favorites.

Each year, we make a trip to the pumpkin patch.  Somewhere along the line, the pumpkin patch became a place for games, climbing, mazes, slides, small animals... and not so much about picking out a pumpkin.  We actually pay money to let our kids run around, on, and through straw bales, play on swings, slides, and tractor tires, take a wagon ride, watch goats climbing up and down ramps, and look at a few baby animals in some pens.  Then at the end, we quick go out to the patch and check out the pumpkins and in to check out the produce.  We usually get a pretty good view of the pumpkin patch from the wagon ride, and this year we noticed that the pumpkins didn't look that great.  One of the fields were giant pumpkins and are "more for decoration than carving" because of the tough skin.  And, the really good carving pumpkins weren't ripe yet because the field was planted late.  They double plant most of the their fields, and with the cooler, wet weather this year, whatever was in that field took longer to ripen than normal, so they didn't get their pumpkins in early enough to ripen for Halloween. Again, the cooler summer made for slow growing.  We went out and took some pictures with the big pumpkins anyway, and bought a white "spooky" pumpkin from the market there.  The kids had fun, and it was a beautiful afternoon.  


I think Tim had some fun too.

We've been having fires almost every weekend since the weather has been just cool enough in the evenings to be comfortable by the fire.  My kids love s'mores, or just plain marshmallows, but still need help roasting their marshmallows.  Otherwise they end up covered in ash or on fire.

We've done a little leaf blowing and the kids love jumping in the piles of leaves.  The other day we piled them up at the end of the slide and they slid down over and over and landed in the pile.  They've been playing in the leaves for days, but today Tim said he was going to mulch and compost them. :(  Good thing there are still some left on the trees!

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Cecilija Jo

Welcome home Cecilija!

Everyone knows the Simon and Garfunkel version of Cecilia.  I used to sing the refrain to it to Amelija, using her name instead.  I don't really want to sing the rest of it to her though. :)  Funny story for you.  As we were leaving the hospital, one of the people we met in the hall was a priest.  He asked us what the baby's name was, and when we told him, he started singing.  But, it wasn't the S&G version.  I'm pretty sure it was this one.
I really like that song.  It reminds me of nice, classic romance.  S&G's Cecilia reminds me of crazy, hippy 70's love, and that's just not me.

So our little baby is Cecilija Jo.  Once again, I was induced.  With the velamentous cord insertion, I was under close watch, and my doctor didn't want to risk anything.  It didn't attach near the cervix, so it wasn't nearly as serious as it could have been.  I actually didn't do any research on it until after I had Cecilija.  I took the doctor's word and trusted that she knew what was best for us.  I'm glad I didn't look up any information on it or I would have scared myself half to death.  Here's a quick little wiki page about it.

Anyway, she told me she didn't want me to go into labor on my own.  It was kind of frustrating... again.  I was hoping to go in to labor just for the simple reason that I haven't experienced much labor.  I was induced with all three kids.  I can't really complain though, because it was really easy for me.  I didn't have any problems with being induced.  I went quickly all three times.

We had a scheduling conflict with trying to get in to be induced.  Our regular appointment was on Tuesday, and the doctor wanted to induce on Wednesday or Thursday.  It was such a busy time for us.  The kids were starting school Aug 19, and we had a final registration day, two orientations, and soccer and gymnastics for both girls that week.  We also didn't have child care lined up.  We recommended the following Monday and our doctor didn't want to wait that long.  So, we decided on Friday, but our doctor couldn't get to the hospital until after 3pm.  So, she scheduled it for 10am so that she could come right after her last appointment.  On one hand it was kind of nice to schedule it.  I finished packing my bag on Thursday night, and I didn't need to worry about adding anything except my toothbrush and my pillow.  We made sure all our electronics were charged and packed.  Tim's Mom got up early Friday morning and drove down to watch the two girls.  We could take our time, eat some breakfast, talk to the kids about going to the hospital, and say goodbye to them before we left. I think it helped them to know when and where we were going, and we didn't just disappear in the middle of the night,

So we showed up at the hospital, checked into L&D, and one of the nurses said, "This isn't your first baby, is it?"  I don't know how she knew.  Maybe it was look of exhaustion on our faces, of having two others at home to take care of, trying to get things done, not sleeping.  Or maybe it was because we didn't pack the whole house and the kitchen sink.  We packed a change of clothes for each of us, our electronics, and my pillow.  That was about it.  Or maybe it was that we didn't have the nervous look on our faces of not knowing what to expect, and realizing we would be coming home with a baby, a responsibility.  Or they could see in our faces that checking into the hospital was almost like a vacation. :)

They started me on IV fluids, then pitocin and right around lunch time the hospital OB broke my water.  Right after that, Tim left to go find lunch.  The festival in town started that afternoon at 4pm, so he thought maybe some of the food trucks would be out.  Well, he didn't have luck with that, so he ended up at a restaurant.  And, three unanswered phone calls and an hour and a half later he finally showed up in my room again.  I had called him because I needed him!  Once my water was broken, my contractions got pretty intense, I wanted his support until I could get my epidural.  I ended up finally getting it about the time Tim came back.  Again this time the medicine was working a little lopsided.  It wasn't as bad.  I did have control of my legs, but one was definitely more dead weight.  Once I had the epidural, things went fast.  Again, I called the nurse in because I felt a lot of pressure and when she checked me she said, "yeah, I don't feel any cervix."  So, she asked me for a practice push.  Then she said I needed to stop.  They stopped the pitocin and waited for my doctor to show up.  Of course, the festival started at 4, and she got stuck in traffic.  So, she showed up about 4pm, started the pitocin back up, and I started pushing.  Each push is actually a series of three pushes, each on a 10 count.  I got through one and a half sets when, at 4:16, my beautiful Cecilija was born.  The doctor said the baby had lots of dark hair.  They said that for every one of my kids!  And when she said it was a girl, once again, I was in disbelief.  I was certain, like 99% sure this was going to be a boy.  It's a good thing she wasn't a boy.  That morning I was on my computer, with my pitocin IV, looking at boy names on the internet because we couldn't decide on one.

She came out looking great.  The only issue we had is that I had a stubborn placenta and it didn't want to come out.  While the doctor worked on that Cecilija got weighed and measured.  She weighed 6 lbs, 3.4 oz, was 21" inches long according to the hospital, but at her first well visit she was about 20 inches. I finally got to hold her and snuggle my tiny girl.  She had big feet and long fingers.  Her ankles were about the size of my thumbs.  But, she was strong.  She kicked and wiggled so much it was hard to change her diaper!  She was our beautiful baby girl.  We were so thankful to be healthy.  We loved our little baby the moment we laid eyes on her.

Friday, October 3, 2014

Baby #3 - pregnancy

I am running a little behind in life...

Oh man… I feel really behind.  Here I am, nine months pregnant, and I posted about this baby one time.  But, do you know what?  The third time around, there are other things that need doing, and blogging gets pushed to the wayside (just in case you hadn’t noticed.)  I’m pretty sure my two existing children appreciate that we play every day and I’m not spending ALL my time in front of my computer.  I already spend some time while they’re home on my computer doing actual work.  Just because I haven’t taken monthly belly pictures, or blogged about progress or what the internet says should be happening to me and baby every week, doesn’t mean we love this one any less.  We are a little busier this time around is all.

This pregnancy started a little rough.  We found out we were pregnant the night before we left for Christmas vacation.  I was busy singing with two groups and had a few days of performances that week, and Tim was out of the country.  He was home for a day before we left for Christmas.  I had been feeling tired and just overall icky.  So, I had two weeks of travel and Christmas festivities and family, and we couldn’t say anything to anyone yet.  We made it through that, and a couple of weeks after we got home,I found out I had a sub-chorionic hemorrhage.  I suddenly started bleeding and I assumed it was a miscarriage.  I went to the doctor that day and after a couple of ultrasounds determined it was a hemorrhage instead.  I was rechecked a couple of times whenever something unusual came up.  Everything was still ok, and it was a huge sigh of relief when I could see that little baby and hear the heartbeat.  At the twenty week ultrasound, the hemorrhage was gone, and this baby didn’t have choroid plexus cysts like the other two.  Yay!  However, the umbilical cord didn’t attach straight into the placenta.It went sideways through the membranes for a short distance before attaching to the placenta.  Luckily, it attached at the top instead of toward the bottom where it would be more of a concern.  But, that still meant extra monitoring.  So, I had an ultrasound for a recheck at 28, 32 and 36 weeks, and then for the last month, I had weekly ultrasounds and non-stress tests.

I also had more pain with this one than the others.  I started going to the chiropractor at about four months because I was having so much lower back pain.  I hadn’t been to the chiropractor since we lived in Michigan… so 5 years?  I was well overdue.  Once my back pain was under control, I continued to go because I had so much pelvic pain.  It was crazy!  I wasn’t nearly as … weak, sensitive, stretched, worn out...? with my other two pregnancies.  I would usually be ok for a few days, and by the third or fourth day I had trouble getting out of bed, and I was always in pain when I went from sitting for a while to standing.

This baby always seemed to have a dance party, sideways, exactly at the time I was getting into bed.  I had something poking out each of my sides the entire time I was trying to get to sleep.  But, there were no big rolls or grand movements.  It always felt like punching or kicking.

Everyone kept saying how small I looked, and that always makes me laugh.  Looking at pictures, I was anything but small.  My doctor was concerned about my low weight gain, so that was another reason to put me on the watch radar. I gained the least amount of weigh with this one, but I also started out weighing more than I did with the other two.  Despite all the risk factors, it ended up being a healthy pregnancy.

These photos were taken on Aug 2, so less than two weeks before baby!

Since I've been trying to write this for almost 2 months, I’m just going to post what I have, and hope to finish it later.


Well hello there!

Let me tell you how we landed here.

I love being able to have a medium to share snippets of our lives, and social media like facebook or instagram means you have to be a member, and not everyone is.  And, here I don't have to post something that all of my 500 "friends" will see.  I can email a little link to those that I want to share with, and they can come over here and check out what's going on.  That's why I love having a blog.

I don't plan to blog about anything in particular.  This isn't a crafty, homesteading, parenting, or photography specific blog, although, you're likely to see any of those things pop up here.  This is where we share what's going on in our lives.  It's a place for me to record or journal my thoughts and our happenings.  So, here we go!

We used to blog at, so if you're looking for something from before today, look there!