Monday, September 30, 2013

Welcome Our Newest Addition!

Last week I shared a sneak peek at our newest addition but I didn't share much else because I wanted to savor in the moment and enjoy the miracle of life.  So without further adieu, allow me to introduce our little man.

Graham Nicolas was born Friday, September 20th at 4:13pm via a scheduled c-section.  He weighed 7lbs 15oz and was 19.50 inches long.  Surgery went smoothly and the little guy screamed his head off while they finished stitching me up.  Very healthy!

So far things are going pretty well.  I'll go over delivery and recovery and our first days with Graham over the next few posts.  Thanks to everyone who posted kind thoughts and words of encouragement during delivery and upon sharing Graham's first picture.  It really means a lot that my readers are checking in on me!

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Wednesday, September 25, 2013

He's Here!

Just popping in for a quick update to let you know our little guy has arrived. Full details to follow including his name and stats but I wanted to provide a few details to let you know we're all doing well.  Trying to catch up on sleep as much as possible and enjoying every moment with this guy.

There likely won't be another post until next week to give us some time together so until then, thanks for all the kind words and thoughts last week!  


Friday, September 20, 2013

39 Week Bump Update

This is it!  Today is the day we'll be meeting our little guy and I can't be more excited and nervous!  I'm officially on the countdown, no food or drink for 8 hours prior to surgery which is scheduled for this afternoon.  In order to distract me, Addie and I will be doing a mommy and me mani/pedi session this morning and then Rick and I will be dropping her off at his parents for the afternoon. 

Due Date? Today!

How far along? 39 weeks

How big is baby? The baby is the size of a small watermelon about 20" and about 7.2lbs.  *Note:  Based on him measuring about 2 weeks ahead of schedule, he's probably more like 8.2lbs.

Weight gain? +31

What's going on with baby?  He's able to flex his limbs at this point and his fingernails may extend past his fingertips.

Stretchmarks? Yes.

Sleep? When I can sleep, it's deep but I've been getting insomnia again and I'm sure it's because I'm stressing.

Best moment this week? Getting the house organized, rearranged, cleaned and prepped for his arrival.  Super busy weekend!

Movement? Still pretty active considering his size.

Food cravings? Back to nothing in particular.  Except maybe donuts, donuts always sound good.  And french maybe I am craving some things.

Gender? Boy!

Labor signs? Just cramping & contractions.  Fourth cervix check on Wednesday showed zero progress.  

Belly button in or out? In.

What I miss? Being able to see my belly button.  I don't remember losing sight of it last time around.

What I am looking forward to? About 4:30 this afternoon when surgery is done and I'm in recovery!  And no more heartburn, oi this heartburn.

Milestones? Delivery day!

Next doctor's appointment? None!  We're done!  Technically a 6 week check up but the next doctor's appointment will be for the little guy!


Thursday, September 19, 2013

Apple Picking 2013

With the baby entering our lives tomorrow, I knew this last weekend needed to be a productive one but also one where we got to enjoy ourselves as a family.  We usually do apple picking right around the time that this little guy was scheduled to join our family so I knew we had to take advantage of a gorgeous Sunday morning as it may be our only chance this season.

 This one is a little sour I'd say. 

She couldn't  get enough of those apples.  Like literally never put it down.

Cheese is still a little hard around here.  My so serious little lady hardly smiles.


 We had so much fun.  Unfortunately those little Toms took a big hit with the dew and the dirt at the orchard so I spent several days trying to figure out how to clean those bad boys.  I should have a tutorial prepared on the way to clean those soon.

Tomorrow's post will be my last weekly bump update before the little guy arrives.  There's a chance a post may not be up on Monday or Tuesday so bear with me as we get settled in and develop a new routine.


Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Product Review: Vitacost

Vitamins and supplements are an essential part of anyone's daily lifestyle.  Whether you're an itty bitty baby in need of some additional vitamin-D or a pregnant woman needing prenatal vitamins and additional folic acid, we all need something that our diet may not be providing fully.  We recently had the opportunity to work with Vitacost to try out some of their vitamins & supplements.

Vitacost has everything you could imagine, from your basic vitamins & supplements to beauty & personal care, products for your pets and coconut oil!  Coconut oil is something I've been dying to try as I've read it's so great for you!

Addie has been taking a multi-vitamin since she was about 2 and loves them.  I think she thinks they're candy.  They do look just like a gummy bear so I guess it makes sense.  We had her try out the Vitacost Multi-Vitamin Gummies for Kids and Vitacost Omega-3 Gummies for Kids.  She loves them both, the best part is we say to her, "Addie do you want your vitamin" and her response is always "yes, and Omega fee".  That little lisp is the cutest thing ever!

You can get up to 50% off health and beauty products, vitamins, nutritional supplements, health foods and whole food products!  If you sign up here, you can receive $10 off your purchase of $30.  Remember, we all need a daily vitamin so you may as well sign up and save yourself $10!


Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Pumpkin Gooey Butter Cake

Looks fabulous right?  It is.  Even people who aren't big fans of pumpkin love this cake because it's such a good balance of cake to pumpkin ratio, then you add a dollop of whipped cream or ice cream and you're solid.  A friend of mine several years ago made this cake for a fall work potluck and I was in heaven.  He's now moved to California and I miss him like mad so every time I make this I think of him.

1 box yellow cake mix
1 egg
8 tablespoons melted butter

Pumpkin Mix
15 oz can pumpkin
8 tablespoons melted butter
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
3 eggs
16 ounces powdered sugar
1 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp cinnamon

Start by mixing the cake ingredients until combined.  Press into a greased 8x12 baking dish.  Next mix the pumpkin & cream cheese until creamy, slowly add melted butter and eggs until combined, then carefully incorporate your powdered sugar, cinnamon & nutmeg.  Beat until creamy & smooth.  Pour on top of cake mix and spread evenly.  Bake at 350 for 40-50 minutes.  Allow the cake to cool completely then add your topping of choice.  Next time I'm trying a homemade whipped cream with amaretto!

Also, I prefer this cake chilled slightly, the flavor pops a bit more.

Lastly, Top Baby Blogs did a reset on their website and we need your help with votes.  Can you click on the link below and then the cute owl on the left?  You can do this daily and we'd appreciate it!

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Monday, September 16, 2013

Complete Essentials Guide for Delivery

We have four days to go.  I've been really procrastinating this delivery thing.  I'm actually very lucky that I haven't gone into labor yet considering we have really been putting things off to the last minute.  Especially since Addie decided to make her appearance at this point tomorrow when I was pregnant with her. That statement has certainly lit a fire under my rear!  So this weekend we did a lot, including transitioning Addie to her big girl bed, getting the nursery set up, car seats installed, etc.  It was a crazy busy weekend but the last thing on my list that needs to happen as soon as possible is pack my hospital bag.  In the meantime, I've made the list and think it would be nice for me to share in the event anyone else needs some help.

Hospital Essentials
- insurance card
- medical records (including medication list)
- registration paperwork
- birth plan if you have one

Care/Comfort Essentials
- vacation stuff: when you're going on vacation, what would you bring with you? (shampoo, conditioner, make up, etc).  you need to bring all this stuff with you, you just had a baby and you're going to want to pamper yourself and you should!  from my experience, having a c-section it was several days before I could take a shower, by the time I could take a shower I was feeling crummy and gross and really enjoyed just washing my hair.  it was amazing!
- things you may not think of or think you'll need:  chapstick/lip balm, non scented cream & scented lotion.  i was so dry after having Addie, I don't know if it was because I just had a baby or because I was in the hospital and it's dry there but omg I was so dry!  my hands and face were also really dry and cracking so I suggest a non scented no additive type cream (cerave, cetaphil, etc) but you also want to pack a small bottle of something with a scent because again, you likely won't be showering very quickly after delivery and you want to at least feel like you smell good even if you don't!
-speaking of not showering, bring wipes because even a little wipe can help you feel somewhat refreshed after days of not showering

Clothing Essentials
- gowns & robes: as someone who had a c-section the first time around when assuming I'd have a vaginal delivery I didn't pack a gown, I packed yoga pants.  if you've had a c-section you know you won't be wearing pants of any kind in the first week at least, possibly 2.  so that first hospital stay I wore a gown from the time I got checked in until I left the hospital and those gowns are starchy and not very comfortable. pack a couple gowns and robes and make sure the gowns are nursing gowns if you plan to nurse.
- underwear: if you want to make the attempt to wear underwear home, make sure you buy some large granny panties because again, if you have a c-section, you don't want anything on your scar.  i wore the mesh underwear home the hospital gave me and I was fine with that.
- going home clothes:  don't plan on looking hot upon leaving the hospital, your stomach will be flabby, you may not be standing straight or walking like you're on the runway so plan for comfort.  i'm packing a maxi skirt and a maxi dress to have a couple options but need to keep the clothing off of my scar.
- socks/slippers/flip flops:  socks or slippers whatever your preference is and flip flops to wear in the shower.  just be careful with those flip flops because a slip/fall after delivery is not good.  

Nursing Essentials
- boppy pillow:  nursing isn't easy and the pillows they give you at hospital don't help so make sure you bring your boppy pillow.  last time around i didn't bring mine and it was terrible.  better to have it than not.
- nipple cream:  lanolin is needed because your nipples will probably become dry, crack and even bleed
- nursing pads: you're going to leak like you would not believe and it's embarrassing to have your gown showing spots.
- nursing bra: again, first go round I didn't pack this because I didn't know so I stayed in the hospital gown with no bra the entire time.  did i mention those hospital gowns have openings to nurse?  so i was flashing people regularly.  get a nursing bra that's cotton, no underwire and very comfortable
- nursing cover:  unless you're really comfortable flashing your boobs and nursing in front of visitors, you'll want to bring this with you as well.  i didn't last go round and will be packing this time.

Baby Essentials
- take home outfit: this is the best part, the reason you're in the hospital, to bring that baby home and you'll take a boatload of pictures so make sure you bring a couple options in different sizes.  you may deliver a large baby who won't be fitting into newborn sized clothes.
- car seat:  your car seat must be installed properly before you can take that baby home so be ready a couple weeks before

Misc Essentials
 - electronics:  ipad/laptop/e-reader, etc so you have something to do when you're going to be in the hospital for hours of labor and days of recovery
- pillows: again, the hospital pillows blow so bring one from home that's comfortable
- phone charger: i'm sure your phone will be blowing up and you'll be on it nonstop so make sure you have the charger ready.
- cameras/video cameras:  whatever you use or both but make sure you know your hospital rules as some hospitals won't allow videotaping or picture taking at certain points

Daddy Essentials
- he can pack himself :)  I'll be honest the first time around I was much more hands on in helping him pack but the be honest this time around he can get himself ready.  he should know by now and because he'll be at home with Addie most nights he really won't need much of a bag but he'll need the same travel essentials as you will.

Other Child Essentials
- gift from baby to other children:  i've heard a lot of other individuals who have multiple children say that a gift from the baby is a great way to warm up your older child(ren) so I bought a couple books, crayons, bubbles, hair clips and nail polish for Addie.  I've also purchased a small monkey for Addie to give to her brother, in the event that helps as well.

Remember that you can always send someone home or out to pick up some things you might need so don't stress out too much.  Plan to pack your bag about 3-4 weeks before your due date and have it ready just in case.  What is most important is you don't panic if you go into labor early as it will all work out but prepare yourself early, especially if you're a planner and it this helps calm your stress levels.


Friday, September 13, 2013

38 Week Bump Update

One week remains!  I can't believe it.  A week from now I'll be sitting with Addie spending my last few hours with her before I'm a mom of two.  Loads to do this weekend, including setting up the nursery.  Yes, we're still working on it.  I'll post photos when I have them ready.  It may not be until after the little guy arrives because we're doing lots of moving around at home.

Due Date? Scheduled c-section date of September 20th. 1 weeks remain.

How far along? 38 weeks

How big is baby? The baby is the size of a leek about 19.75" and about 6.8lbs.  *Note:  Based on him measuring about 2 weeks ahead of schedule, he's probably more like 7.8lbs.

Weight gain? +32

What's going on with baby?  Baby is full term with fully functioning organs, his brain and nervous system will continue to develop after birth into teen years.  

Stretchmarks? Yes.

Sleep? Still sleeping really well and deep.    So deep I'm waking up on my stomach a few times.

Best moment this week? On Monday a coworker brought in donuts for me.  Shamefully I ate 3 donuts by the end of the day. It was tasty though!  A couple other coworkers brought in a couple gifts for me which was so sweet!

Movement? Still pretty active.  The movement I am getting is sometimes painful.

Food cravings? Salsa.

Gender? Boy!

Labor signs? Third cervix check was no progress, still sitting at 0 cm.  

Belly button in or out? In.

What I miss? Back to missing non maternity clothes especially since it's mid September now.

What I am looking forward to? Holding my little nugget for the first time.

Milestones? 1 week to go!

Next doctor's appointment? September 18th.


Thursday, September 12, 2013

Throwback Thursday: My First Baby

It's Thursday and we're nearly a week away from meeting our little guy so I decided today I'll keep it simple and throw in a couple photos from when my first baby was little.  So let's just get to it!

My little chubster!  I can't believe she's going to be a big sister in a week!


Wednesday, September 11, 2013

My Non Typical Pregnancy

So here's the deal, if you've been pregnant before you know that no pregnancy is the same.  Just by talking with friends, coworkers, family; everyone experiences pregnancy different.  Each woman has a different experience but may have to follow a different plan after finding out they're pregnant.  For example, some women, like me become anemic while pregnant so they have to take additional iron supplements.  There are many different ways each pregnancy could differ and I'm here to tell you about how mine is different.

If you've followed the blog for a while, you probably read about my pregnancy journey. To summarize, I've been pregnant 5 times.  The first 3 pregnancies resulted in miscarriage and my OBGYN was stumped so I was sent to a reproductive endocrinologist for testing.  After loads of tests, procedures, and blood work, we found out that I have several things factoring into why the pregnancies may have failed.  Two of the larger issues being MTHFR and a protein S deficiency.  For the MTHFR I have to take additional folic acid and for the protein S deficiency I have to take a blood thinner every day while pregnant.

3 month supply
So each time I'm pregnant I immediately call my OBGYN and I immediately begin daily injections to thin my blood.  I take these up to 35weeks and then I switch over to twice daily injections of a different type of thinner which has a shorter half life.  So in lei-mans terms that means if I go into labor the later blood thinner wears off quicker than the first so there's a lesser concern for bleeding during delivery.

12 day supply
When you're going into a surgery, it's even more necessary to watch the risk of bleeding.  It's not a very exciting thing to do while pregnant but the pain and discomfort is all worth it in the end.

Morning injection
By the end of this pregnancy I'll have injected myself approximately 294 times!  Not including the 6 weeks of injections following delivery that I'll have to complete as the risk of clotting increases after delivery.  When people hear that I have to inject myself daily, I can see and oftentimes hear the pity in each of their faces/voices.  What I want people to know is that even though it sucks and is not at all pleasurable, it's worth the pain and the intrusion to my schedule because I get a cute squishy baby out of it all.  Someone out there has it worse than me so I cannot and will not complain about my journey and pray that anyone with the same issues I have are able to quickly discover the issue to treat appropriately.


PS.  Only 9 days to go!!

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Hillbilly Hash

One of my uncles made this once at a family get together and ever since I get this craving for it.  I'm not sure why he called it Hillbilly Hash but that is its name and it is yummy!.  If you need a quick simple meal that you can't get enough of, this is it!  And it can't get much easier than two ingredients.

Brown up the potatoes as the package suggests then toss in your diced sausage and continue to cook until sausage browns up and is the color you like.  Add a little salt & pepper and possibly a little cayenne or chili powder if you want a bit more kick.

If you make all the sausage & the entire bag of potatoes you'll have about 4 servings.  I made half for us since Addie doesn't eat much and Rick and I don't really need a full bag.  

Dinner is done in less than 20 minutes!


Friday, September 6, 2013

37 Week Bump Update

 This was a fabulously long weekend.  Crazy but still not long enough.  What's nice is I'm transitioning my workload over to a couple coworkers so as the weeks pass, I'm becoming less and less busy.  It's great because I can start focusing on what I don't have done yet for this guys arrival.  My plan is to have the big stuff taken care of by next week.  I need to bust out my list!

Due Date? Scheduled c-section date of September 20th. 2 weeks remain.

How far along? 37 weeks

How big is baby? The baby is the size of a swiss chard about 19.25" and about 6.3lbs.  *Note:  Based on him measuring about 2 weeks ahead of schedule, he's probably more like 7.3lbs.

Weight gain? +31

What's going on with baby?  Baby is now considered full term meaning the organs should be fully developed and prepared for the outside world!

Stretchmarks? Yes.

Sleep? Sleeping really well and deep.  I've even made it through the night a couple times without waking to use the restroom.

Best moment this week? My best and worst moment was all rolled into one.  I'm trying to prepare Addie for me being in the hospital and away from her for several nights.  I told her that I would be away but that she would be taken care of.  She very quickly pouted her lip and said, "No, mama, I miss you".  Obviously I like that she cares enough to miss me, but I don't want her to be sad.  I'm really hoping the days she's away from us she enjoys and the nights are easy on her.

Movement? Still pretty active.  The movement I am getting is sometimes painful.

Food cravings? Nothing in particular this week.

Gender? Boy!

Labor signs? Second cervix check was no progress, still sitting at 0 cm.  I had some intense cramping over the weekend and some throughout the week.  Nothing too painful or regular at this point.

Belly button in or out? In.

What I miss? Being able to walk by something without hitting my stomach. Or eating without reclining.

What I am looking forward to? This heartburn to be gone.

Milestones? Officially full term today and 2 weeks to go.

Next doctor's appointment? September 11th.


Wednesday, September 4, 2013

So Fresh & So Clean

 We're down to 15 days until this baby arrives!  15.days.  I can't believe how close it is.  It's so close that I'm suddenly starting to get the whole 'omg, I'm not ready yet'.  We have so much to do still and one of the things I'm trying to stay on top of as much as possible is keeping our house clean.  I recently had a chance to check out Lysol's Power & Free products which help keep all areas of our house looking fresh & clean.

Just take a look at our dirty stove top after dinner one night.

With a little bit of the multi-purpose spray the stove top was looking a bit cleaner.

And can we please talk about that nasty build up that occurs on our kitchen faucet?

I have no idea what that is or how it gets there, but please take a look at what the wipes can do in less than 30 seconds.

The gunk is gone and the silver is shining!  This product is awesome at quickly cleaning up and killing 99.9% of viruses & bacteria.  That's amazing news to a mom of a rambunctious 2.5 year old and a newborn baby on the way.  Especially as we head into the winter months!  I'm wiping down every door knob & toy in our house!  The baby is coming home to a clean home even if he doesn't have a place to lay his head!


Note: Though I received this product for free,  all opinions are mine. 

Lemon Cookies

This may be the easiest recipe ever and make sure to watch the end for another tip.  I found this on Pinterest and wanted to give it a try.  We spent some time with our close friends for a cookout and I wanted to bring a treat that was easy to make, because I honestly don't have any time, but also something really tasty!  So here it is, the easiest recipe you'll ever make.

What you need is pictured above.  That's it.

Mix the softened cool whip, box of lemon cake and egg together.

Spray a cookie sheet and drop by the spoonful.  Bake for 10 minutes until slightly browned on 350.

Sprinkle with powdered sugar and enjoy!  These are about 30 calories a cookie but with a dash of powdered sugar you're looking a little heavier but still a great option if you're trying to watch your waistline but still enjoy a good treat.  

Also, you can make this same recipe with any box cake mix.  Red velvet, funfetti, etc.  So many options and so easy to make.  You can whip these up last minute if you need something on the fly!


Tuesday, September 3, 2013

2013 Sweet Corn Festival

The unofficial end of summer weekend just ended and it's bittersweet.  I love summer and all the fun it brings, but I'm pregnant so I can't wait for it to be over.  At the same time I'm excited for fall, don't want the winter to come but want to enjoy time with my little guy.  One of the things we look forward to most over Labor Day weekend is the local Sweet Corn festival.  Last year it was so much fun with Addie and this year it was even better.

Lots of corn eating.

Loads of rides!

Riding "horseys" with grandpa was the thing she enjoyed most.

I figured being a long weekend and it being my first day back at the blog I needed a simple post so today you get the pictures.  I hope you enjoyed your weekend!  More to come about what I made for a party this weekend!



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