Monday, December 10, 2012

A happy Christmas?

Until I can figure out the problem I'm having uploading pictures to the blog, you'll just have to deal with words only.  Bummer.  I know.

Well it's about 2 weeks away from Christmas.  It's my favorite time of the year.  I love being with family and friends and celebrating our Lord's birth.
The last 2 Christmases have not been completely joy-filled or relaxing in anyway.
2 years ago, we had 2 week old Mady who wasn't gaining weight.  The week before and after Christmas were spent desperately trying to get her to gain GRAMS not just OUNCES.  We were told, her situation was borderline "failure to thrive" and if she didn't gain any weight, she would be hospitalized.  
Like any new mom, I was filled with emotional stress.  Since I was breastfeeding, I felt it was up to me to make her gain weight.  We spent a little over a week, feeding her this hour long routine of breastfeeding, followed by "finger feeding" followed by me pumping.  Fun times.  I ended up getting mastitis and the antibiotics they gave me completely emptied my stomach in multiple directions.  
Failed expectations.
I was so excited that I was going to get to bring my little girl home for Christmas at my parents house.  It would be the first time my grandparents would meet her.
Since Mady's situation was so poor, we were not allowed to travel.  
It was a hard Christmas for sure.

Fast forward to the next year.

We found out 3 weeks earlier we were pregnant again!  So excited!  We were going to announce it at Christmas to our families.
Instead we spent Christmas Eve morning in the ER learning that we would most likely lose our 2nd baby.  
After traveling down to Oklahoma that day, we did lose our little one in the afternoon.  
Instead of experiencing the joy of finally being able to be in Oklahoma for Christmas after 2 years of missing out, we were filled with sorrow, grief, and sadness.  I still miss that little one even though I have the blessing of Abigail this year.
Not only did we have to deal with our loss, but Mady came down with the stomach flu on Christmas day.  It was the only time she has thrown up, and she threw up a lot that day.  2 days later, I got it.  And after suffering a miscarriage 4 days earlier, it completely wiped me out.   Poor Jeremy had to spend his vacation time holding a bucket for me and pulling back my hair.
Unfortunate Accident
In the midst of all of this, Jeremy and I had to deal with our computer accidentally getting thrown away at his parent's house.  It's a long story and I won't go into the details, but we lost all/most of our pictures of Mady girl's first year and our pictures before we had kids.

I don't mention all of this for sympathy.  We had 2 really rough years at Christmas.  This year I'm praying that we will experience the joy of Christmas instead of emotional stress, failed expectations, sorrow, sickness, and the result of an unfortunate accident.  I want to be able to enjoy my kiddos and thank God for the blessing they are.  
I know traveling 9+ hours back home for Christmas will have it's challenges.  the girls will probably get off schedule a bit, we may get a little less sleep (although I'm not sure how considering Miss Abby's eating habits), and we may get sick.  But I want the memories to be filled with happiness and laughter and being able to focus completely on the true meaning of Christmas, instead of being surrounded by the sorrows of this fallen world.  
Please pray for us.  
It will be a long drive.
So many things could go wrong.
Pray that we will take each event-good or bad-with thankfulness and gratitude and JOY.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Abby's Room

I had a difficult time deciding what to do with Abby's room.  I'm not big on nursery themes. I did find 2 pictures that were my inspiration for her vintage-y inspired room. I also did not want to spend much money at all.  In fact, all furniture and most decorations in Abby's room except the crib and mattress were purchased at consignment stores. I love how it turned out!
As you walk in the door.
The bedding is from JC Penny.
Pinterest inspired decorations.  These were so easy and cheap!
Frame just waiting for Abby's pictures!
We got the chair from a consignment store and used a slip cover.  
Shelf from my room at my parents house.  I'm still trying to decorate it.
Pictures found at a garage sale that was my inspiration for the room.
Dresser bought at a consignment store.  We painted it and changed the hardware.
From Ikea.  
Such a true quote for our tiny little girl!
The Mickey and Mini Mouse were mine from my childhood.
This was a stool that I bought for $5 and painted.  The lamp is from IKEA.
 Of course what makes this room even better is the adorable baby girl taking a nap in her crib.

Saturday, November 17, 2012


Here are similar pictures of Miss Mady and Abby.  

It's hard for me to tell if my girls look alike or not.  What do you think?

Friday, November 16, 2012

1 week

Miss Abby is 1 week today!  
It's hard to believe that just a week ago, I was huge, pregnant and making my way to the hospital.  
Her birth was so easy and I feel 1,000 times better a week after, than I did with Mady.
Abby is definitely showing us she has a little different personality than her sister.
Mady would never wake up for feedings.  We would have to tell her when to eat.  She was so passive.  She also slept 5 hours straight from the time we took her home from the hospital.  This was not necessarily a good thing considering her feeding issues that were later discovered.
This little miss is like clockwork.  
I don't even have to set an alarm to make sure she eats.  
She will let you know at exactly 3 hours that it's time for her next meal.
Instead of being passive during her feeding issues earlier this week, she was was agitated and wouldn't settle down.  
We have loved getting to know our Baby Abby!

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Feeding issues Take 2

I often look at moms who breastfeed and wonder how did you get so lucky?  When I hear stories of moms who pump so much milk they have to give it away or their babies gain weight from the start, I am in awe.
Apparently, Abby wanted to follow in her sister's footsteps.
This time, however, we were on top it from the start.
Weight gain is something I don't mess around with.
After you've had a child who doesn't get to birth weight until after she's a month old, you're willing to do almost anything to see the numbers go up on the scale.
Abby weighed 5 lbs 12 oz at birth and at our doctor's appointment on Monday, she was 5 lbs 1 oz.  That's a 12% weight loss and most likely would have ended her up in the hospital but because we were meeting with the lactation consultant that day, the doctor let us have another 24 hours to get her weight up at least an ounce.
Of course, after that doctor appointment, and with my raging hormones, I was in tears.  The old fears of what Mady went through took over.
We met with the lactation lady (as Jeremy calls her) and she was someone that God placed in our lives at the right moment.  She was so encouraging!  We explained everything we went through with Mady.  The hour long process is took to feed her breast milk before ultimately switching to formula.  
She replied, "You don't have time for that.  I am more pro-family than I am pro-breastfeeding and you need to find something that works for your family."  
So we figured out a plan which included bottle feeding formula and whatever breastmilk I could pump.
The next day we took Miss Abby back to the doctor and she had gained 5.5 ounces!!  So we know we're on the right track.
Ultimately I would love to be able to breastfeed my kiddos but that doesn't look like its going to be possible with this chick again.  The formula road is not a bad road and Abby's older sister is a perfectly healthy little girl.  
Who would've thought my football playing husband would have 2 little girls struggle with weight gain?

Sunday, November 11, 2012

A Baby Story

On Friday Miss Abigail Hope joined our family!  We have spent the last few days loving on her and her proud big sister Mady.
Friday could not have gone better.
Since we moved to Cheyenne, I had to find a new doctor and of course would be delivering in a new hospital.  I cannot speak more highly of my experience here in Cheyenne.  Hands down, this delivery was the easiest and most wonderful experience.  
From the guy who gave me my epidural and spent extra time explaining everything he was doing, to the labor/delivery nurse who was so much fun, and the doctor who was fantastic, everything went so well.
On Friday, I was scheduled to be induced and we went to the hospital at 7:00.  
Around 7:30, my doctor came in and started a natural induction process.  (No pitocin YAY!) 
It immediately started cramps and fairly regular contractions.  I was having back labor so by 11:30, I wanted an epidural.  I was only a 4 at this point and a little disappointed I wasn't making more progress.
After my epidural (side note: the doctor who put my epidural in actually did his residency at Wesley Hospital in Wichita!), things were good in my world.  I love epidurals and have decided I probably won't be able to have a natural birth and I am totally ok with that.
At 12:30, my doctor came in and broke my water and then at 2:00 he checked and I was at a 6 and said he would be back in an hour. I was excited about making progress since the morning had been rather slow.  
At 2:20, I started having uncontrollable shaking.  I never had anything like that with Mady so I had the nurse come in.  She gave me a popsicle thinking it was low blood sugar, but then decided to check me.  I was a 10 and the baby was coming fast!  I was having the "baby shakes".  
She ran out and grabbed the doctor right before he headed down for lunch.  
He came in and said, we're having a baby now!
The nurses literally had less than 5 minutes to get things ready and with 2 pushes, little Abby joined our family at 2:34 PM! 

I could not believe how fast she came!  We were all a little surprised including the nurses.  With Mady I pushed for 1 1/2 hours.  
She came out pink, wiggly, and adorable!  

We are so in love with our tiny little girl!

Monday, October 22, 2012

Fall Crafts

We have been trying to stay busy around here waiting for Baby Sister to make her appearance.  
I'm really impatient right now and the fact that she has dropped so low makes moving around a bit uncomfortable.
I also had back contractions on Friday and we went to the clinic to be monitored.  Baby's heartbeat was all over the place so they sent me to the hospital for more monitoring.  Thankfully, after being monitored in the hospital for a couple of hours, Baby's heartbeat settled down.  We also had another sonogram at the hospital which confirmed that she definitely is a girl.  She was showing off her lady parts for all of us to see:) 

Anyway, Mady and I have tried to stay busy doing things around the house.  Here's a few examples.
1. Coffee Filter Painting  (One of the easiest crafts since we always have everything we need to do it!)

 2. Sponge/Car Painting  (Mady really enjoyed driving her cars through the paint.)
3. Shaving Cream Bathtub painting

4. Halloween Window Stickers (these have been awesome!  I found these in the dollar section of Target.  Mady loves them and I have bought several packages of them!)