Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Sweet Baby Joshua

Our sweet baby BOY Joshua Falcon, Jr. was born on Sunday, December 9, 2012 at 12:11 pm! He weighed 7 pounds 14 oz and was 21 inches long.
I went into labor on Saturday night around 7 pm. Contractions started strong and about 20 minutes apart. By 10 pm, I was already telling Josh that the contractions were very painful and that I didn't think I'd be able to do it without an epidural. Ha! This was really something seeing as I took the Bradley Method classes and wanted a drug free birth ever since I was pregnant with Audrey. I went to bed around midnight and the contractions were coming about every 10-12 minutes and were very intense and strong. During each contraction, I couldn't talk, move, breathe, or do anything except concentrate on trying to relax. This went on all night until 6 am when the contractions were so painful that I started vomiting and getting shaky. I'd heard of this during labor, but not during "early" labor when contractions were still far apart. At this point, my closest contractions were still 8-12 minutes apart and lasting a full 2 minutes. I was perfectly fine between contractions since they were so far apart. Around 9 am, I called the doctor because I felt that contractions were strong enough and long enough to consider myself in active labor, but I knew that they weren't close enough together to warrant a visit to the hospital just yet. My doctor agreed that I was not in active labor and that I shouldn't go in, but he did ask about where the pain was coming. I told him that the pain was centered around my lower uterus, right on my incision from my first C-Section. He asked if the contractions made my whole uterus tighten and I told him "no"; the only pain I was having was around my incision. Up until that point, I knew something didn't feel right, but I hadn't really recognized that the pain was only at my incision. He told me to come in immediately. After I hung up with him, I told Josh and Lauren (she'd come over to watch Audrey since we knew at this point labor had at least started) that I was probably overreacting and didn't feel like driving all the way to the hospital just for them to tell me to go home and come back when contractions were closer together. They both said we should go anyways, so Josh loaded up our bags and we headed out.
I had a few more contractions on the way to the hospital and as we were walking in. Luckily they were so far apart that the ride wasn't unbearable. When we arrived, they hooked me up to the monitors and left me and Josh in the room. We were laughing and fully expecting to be sent home in a few minutes, and that I'd just need to figure out how to manage the pain until the contractions were closer together and I could get an epidural! After 30 minutes of monitoring, my doctor came in and said things were not looking good. He showed us the baby's chart from the fetal monitor and said it was showing "non variability" (non variance? something like that). This basically means (as he explained it) that the baby is not doing anything. He wasn't moving at all, he wasn't responding to me moving, he wasn't responding to me eating, his heart rate wasn't changing at all even during contractions. He showed us some other fetal monitors of the women in triage at that time and showed how their baby's charts showed a lot of ups and downs, while ours was a very straight line. He said he wanted to do a C-Section right away. This took me by surprise but I looked at Josh and he nodded and said OK. The doctor gave us a couple of minutes to talk about it and then everyone started prepping me for surgery and having us fill out all of our consent forms. I was continuing to have contractions this whole time and at this point I just wanted it to be over since I knew real labor wasn't going to happen.

A little over an hour later, Joshua was standing up watching our baby boy be born. He kind of giggled and said, "Dyn-o-mite!" and I was like, "WTF does that mean??" and he giggled again and said, "Its a boy!". Apparently the "dyn-o-mite" was a reference to the show Good Times and the fact that we planned to call our son JJ for Joshua Jr. Anyways, they showed him to me but didn't let me hold him at that time. Josh went over to the table with him and took pictures and watched him get weighed and checked out. After what felt like forever, they finally did bring him to me. My arms were not tied down this time so I was able to touch and feel him, but I couldn't really hold him because of how I was positioned and the surgery curtain etc. But I was glad to be able to at least feel him. They stayed by my side for a while, but eventually they had to go to the nursery.

My doctor told us as soon as he opened me up that my interior incision (the one directly on my uterus) was very thin - paper thin - and that it was being stretched more and more with each contraction. He said that was why the pain was so bad, and that the baby's head was probably pushing on it during contractions as well, making the pain that much worse. He said that if we'd gone through with a VBAC that my incision likely would have ruptured because it was so thin to start with. I was so thankful at that moment to be where I was. He also said that Joshua was in the posterior position (face up, not the best) and that the cord was wrapped around his neck. Three things that were working against us for a vaginal birth.
When Dr. Ayoub told me I needed a C-Section, I did get choked up and cried a little when Josh and I were discussing it. The thing is, I didn't cry because I was sad or disappointed about not getting the birth I wanted. At that point I was crying because I was just so surprised and worried and shocked at the turn of events. It was really the farthest thing from what I'd imagined would be happening. Prior to contractions Saturday night, I was fully expecting and preparing to go in on Thursday for a scheduled c-section. But for things to go down the way they did...I certainly did not expect that. It all happened so fast!

We discharged from the hospital on Tuesday afternoon and have been taking it easy. We've had doctor's appointments for Joshua and for me and we are both doing well. I'm recovering much faster than I did last time and haven't had to take any drugs other than Motrin (and one percocet in the hospital). I feel great! Joshua gained back his birth weight before we left the hospital and at his first check up on Wednesday he was 8 pounds. I'm hoping he gains weight quickly because I have so many 0-3 months clothes and very few newborn sized clothes. Breastfeeding is going well so far and I hope it keeps up. I nursed Audrey for 14 months and hope to go about as long with Joshua.
I realize I am risking "jinxing it" by saying this, but Joshua is a really easy, mellow baby. He fusses when he's hungry and he cries during diaper changes. When he's tired, he goes to sleep. I can just wrap him up and lay him in his bed and HE GOES TO SLEEP. This is amazing. I did not believe babies like this existed. Audrey was not like that. She required a lot of bouncing, rocking, shushing, singing, patting, nursing, etc to fall asleep, and then would wake up 45 minutes later and we'd have to do it all over again. I expected to be doing the same with this one, but apparently he doesn't need it. At night, he's been sleeping 3-4 hours and then waking to eat and right back to sleep. Last night he slept for 6 hours straight. Could this bliss keep up? I doubt it. I'm sure this will all change next week (its been 3 days since I initially wrote that...yes, things have changed. He's now waking to eat every 2-3 hours. Dang!).
Audrey is adjusting well. At first, she talked about "Baby JJ" literally from the minute she woke up until she went to sleep at night. She kisses him and pats him gently and asks to hold him. She likes to give him his tiger that Lexi knitted for him and she tries to give him other toys as well. We have to keep an eye on her though, because she wants to play with him and has tried to put toy food in his mouth and throw stuffed animals in his pack and play. I know we'll just have to keep reminding her to be gentle and don't give him toys, but she's smart and I think she'll figure it out quickly. We have been able to each have individual time with her every day since Joshua still sleeps so much, so it hasn't been a huge adjustment in that regard. The biggest thing is probably that she hasn't gotten as much time outside since we've hardly left the house. Josh has taken her out to play in the yard every day, but we haven't made any trips to the park or errands or anything like that. She does seem to be a bit tired of being in the house so we'll have to start getting out here pretty soon.

This post has become ridiculously long. I hope you like the pictures and I'll be back with more soon!

Friday, December 7, 2012

The Due Date

Well, here we are...the due date has come and gone. This means nothing other than everyone I know including me is getting anxious and wondering when. I'm feeling really good and not at all like I am about to go into labor.
Actually, I do feel like it *might* be coming soon. I have been having irregular contractions for about a week now. Nothing painful, not even really uncomfortable, they just feel like kind of bad menstrual cramps. Sometimes they do get a little uncomfortable and annoying, but it isn't painful. The nurse said that those are indeed contractions, so if I could just get them to get steady and closer together, we'd be good. :) At my appointment this morning everything looked good. Weight, blood pressure, and everything else was all on target. The doctor did a Biophysical Profile (an ultrasound, why the fancy name? Who knows.) and the baby's lungs are pumping strong and the heartbeat looks really good. Baby is still head down. We didn't peek between the legs. The only thing that was slightly concerning was that my amniotic fluid was slightly low. This is usually fixed by hydrating, so I am upping my water intake and also going to start drinking coconut water to make sure baby has enough floaty juice in there. Unfortunately, my cervix is still not showing signs of being ready for labor. That could change at any time, though. I hope.
We talked about the plan for the next week. I am going back to the doctor on Tuesday to do another Biophysical Profile and to recheck for any signs of labor. If I do have a favorable cervix, we will induce Wednesday. If not, we'll move forward with the section on Thursday. Josh and I asked about possibly doing things a little different during the C Section than how they were done last time. We weren't sure if it was even a possibility, but we asked, and the doctor was so supportive. He said yes to all of our requests, except to let Josh cut the baby's cord (sterilization and infection issues with my abdomen and guts laying out and what not). The big things that he agreed to are that he'll let me have my arms free instead of strapped down. This is huge - it means I'll be able to actually be able to touch and even hold the baby after she's born. Last time I didn't get to touch Audrey until she was almost two hours old. We also asked if she could be handed to us immediately after she comes out, rather than them showing her to us over the curtain and then whisking her away. Josh will also be allowed to watch (if he wants) her being born - they might lower the curtain for him or have him stand up and watch. Last time they wouldn't even let him do that! I was hoping that they'd let Josh and the baby stay in the surgery room with me the whole time, but the doctor said they will have to go to the nursery for about a half hour because the hospital does not allow baths and all that in the surgery room. Finally, he agreed to discharge me a day early if I'm feeling good. These are all great things that we are very happy about. Of course, none of this affected my ability to bond with Audrey - I bonded with her immediately anyways. But it will be nice to be able to have these things in order to make it feel a little more like childbirth and not surgery. Most people don't understand why these things matter or make a difference, but I don't care. They matter to me and that's enough.

I've been doing all the suggested things to get labor going. I'm bouncing on my yoga ball all day long, stretching, squatting, pumping, drinking the tea, walking...and none of these things bring on contractions. We spent an hour at the park on Monday, walked two miles Tuesday and Wednesday....and nothing. Not even a cramp! Whew. Baby is snug as a bug in there, I guess! I am actually really ok with how things are going. Of course I would like to go into labor spontaneously on my own and have the natural delivery I want. That would be ideal. But ideal is not always real, and I'm ok with that. Last time (with Audrey), I spent the entire last week of my pregnancy crying every day, all day. Trying, praying, willing her to flip and not be breech so I wouldn't need a C-Section. I think the difference this time is that at least I know I've been given a fair chance. Going to 41 weeks for a VBAC is really something - many doctors don't even allow a woman to go past 39 weeks or even attempt to have a vaginal birth at all. Many other doctors won't even consider inductions for VBACs. Last time I felt betrayed by my doctors and this time I feel fully supported and like he really is giving me a chance and setting me up for success. So if I end up with another C-Section because baby or my body isn't ready to do it on its own, at least I know that I tried to let it happen naturally and for whatever reason, baby needed help getting out. I'm OK with that!
We are spending the next few days the same as we've spent that last few. Relaxing, trying our natural inductions methods, enjoying being a family of three and having a baby that goes to bed at 730 and doesn't make a peep until 730 the next morning. Man, I'm going to miss these nice quiet nights!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Birthdays and Thanksgiving

November is such a busy month for us. We have so many family birthdays, plus Thanksgiving, and this year, also Mike's leaving for Korea. We decided this year to just do one big celebration for all of these things and last weekend we did it!

Josh deep fried a turkey (his favorite!) and made a pumpkin cheesecake. I made nothing. I did clean the house though! That's something! Everyone else each brought a dish and we served it all up buffet style on paper plates. We keep it classy here in Manassas Park! We had turkey, honey baked ham, mac and cheese, green bean casserole, salad, mashed potatoes, arroz con gandules (Josh's rice), and cupcakes to finish us off. I am happy to say we got left with a lot of leftovers that basically fed us for the rest of the week. And we had enough turkey left over to make two turkey pot pies, and freeze one for after the baby comes. Yay!

So now on to my latest thing - freezer cooking. I am stocking up my freezer for after the baby comes. I kind of did this with Audrey, but I think the only thing I made was chili and froze it. This time I am being much more serious about it because I already know how hard it can be to get dinner on the table with one child clawing at my leg, add in another one that I can't throw cheerios at to keep them calm for a few minutes, and this could get ugly. So I want to have meals in the freezer that I can just grab and toss in the oven and move on with my day. Yesterday I made my list of meals and went shopping. I thought (naively) that I could get it all done yesterday since Josh would be home and could be with Audrey, but that didn't happen. In fact, by the time I got home from grocery shopping (walking around for an hour at Costco and Shoppers) it was 1pm so I got a bit of a late start. I started with the easiest things - breakfasts. Personally, I could eat cold cereal every single day of my life for the rest of forever, but I know that isn't nutritious for Audrey and it won't be good for breastfeeding either. It is just SO HARD to stand in front of the oven cooking breakfast before I've even had my coffee. So anyways, I made egg/cheese/sausage burritos, egg and sausage muffins (with onions and hash browns and mushrooms, yum), and banana oatmeal muffins. I also found a great recipe for banana/almond/oatmeal smoothies that I can make for mornings when I am too lazy to even heat something up. I tasted all - they all were good. Unfortunately, after I was done it was already 4:15 and my body was aching from standing that long and I decided to call it quits for the day. Josh still plans to make a bunch of pancakes for the freezer too, and today I am going to attempt to start on the easier big meals - soups and stews. It mostly depends on how Audrey feels today. If she feels like playing with her toys, we could be successful. If she feels like "helping" me, this could be a slow process.
38 weeks
Some other recent things - we took a trip to Clemyjontri Park a couple of weeks ago and met up with Ian and Gloria and Matthew, Cristina, and Lisa. It was a fun day! The park is huge and there is so much to do so the kids definitely had fun. The adults, however, were having a heck of a time keeping up with them! All children look the same when they're all running in circles, did you know that?? Luckily Audrey had her signature high ponytail that I could pick out among the crowds. I am not sure we'll go back there for a while - it was just too hard to follow the kids around when there were so many other kids.

I also got my new washer and dryer delivered over the weekend! It is marvelous. My clothes come out smelling like clean clothes. Fresh, no lingering odors or moldy stench...just clean. I did a deep clean on Audrey's cloth diapers so hopefully we can get her back in those for the remainder of the time she's in diapers. I also scored some Black Friday deals on cloth diapers for the new baby, so s/he should be set through the newborn stage (we're using old school pre-folds and covers, and trying out a new "fitted" diaper). I think I might be able to use most of Audrey's diapers on the baby as s/he gets bigger, but I am also thinking about buying some new ones so I can be sure they'll last me through the entire diapering period. Oh, and we were able to sell our old washer and dryer on Craigslist really quickly, so I am happy with the whole situation.

Finally, I'll leave you with a video of Audrey counting. Videos are hard to get now a days because she always wants to watch herself on the camera and won't just let me tape her. Since Josh was here I was able to get her counting, now I just have to get her singing her ABCs. It is the most precious thing with her tiny little voice.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Baby Sprinkle

On Sunday, I was surprised with a baby sprinkle to celebrate our new little baby. It was such an unexpected gift and I was so happy to have everyone together to celebrate!

Lauren and I had planned to hang out that day and do some shopping. She said she had to go to Reston Town Center to exchange a gift that Cheryle got for her new apartment, so I didn't think anything of it when we headed out there. But then we walked into a really fancy restaurant and I looked at her and said, "oh you're treating me to lunch?" and she was like, "ummm yeah!". I started to think something weird was up when the hostesses started acting odd and then Lauren had to step over and whisper to the manager. We walked to the back room of the restaurant and there was everyone! Grandma Gloria, Joy and Ian, Cheryle, Lisa and the kids, and my friend Brett and her daughter Ellie. Apparently more friends were invited but couldn't make it.

I was so surprised because I really didn't expect anyone to do anything for the new baby. I guess because there isn't anything I really need this time around, so I didn't give it much thought. I had actually planned on just getting a little cake for our family Thanksgiving/November birthday celebration that we're having next weekend and recognize it that way. So this was very special to me that everyone came together and did this. Josh and Audrey ended up coming up and eating with us too, so I could share my happiness with them. :)

We ate delicious food and deserts and opened a few presents. There isn't really anything else I need to get now. I have a gift card to Babies R Us so I can get a stroller, but I might just wait until the baby is here and then decide which kind I want.

Unfortunately I forgot to take ANY pictures, so these are all from Cheryle. And I didn't get hardly any pictures with the guests or the hosts of the party! Dang. But thank you so SO much to Grandma Gloria and Cheryle for throwing me this super fancy baby sprinkle for our new baby. I can't wait for him to be here so we can shower him with lots of love!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

36 weeks already!

Tomorrow I will be 36 weeks pregnant. Already! And also finally. It feels like I've been pregnant forever, but it also feels like the past few weeks have flown by. I feel very prepared and ready, like if the baby comes tomorrow I'd be fine. Even though we don't have anything really done, haha. I have not set up the infant car seat in either car. I have not set up the cosleeper in our room. I have not packed a hospital bag, or a bag for Audrey while she stays with dad and Lisa when I'm in the hospital. I haven't arranged for the pets to be taken care of. I *have* washed all of the newborn clothes (the gender neutral ones) and blankets and burp cloths, so those are ready. I only bought my first box of diapers two days ago.
I'm sucking in.
Speaking of diapers, at this point, we are preparing to use disposables at least in the beginning because of our washer situation. It has somehow actually gotten worse. Our clothes all come out smelling moldy and gross, and now the whole drum smells like mildew no matter how much I clean it and leave it open to dry after each wash. I will never buy a front loader again!! The plan was to save up to buy a washer and dryer set (top loader, not 'high efficiency', just a good old fashioned washer), but at this point I think we might just go ahead buy one ASAP on the credit card so we can get Audrey back in cloth diapers and get the new baby in them when s/he is born. I swear every time I throw a dirty diaper in the trash I feel like I am throwing away money. After not having that expense for so long, it really came as a shock when I went in to buy diapers for Audrey and spent $40 just like that! Ouch!
How adorable is this baby bun? I LOVE HAVING A GIRL.
We made a few halfhearted efforts at potty training over the past couple of months, but last week we made a real dedicated effort to get Audrey potty trained. Unfortunately, we think she is just not ready. She LOVES sitting on the potty. She loves reading books about the potty, talking about the potty, watching us go (FUN.), and we even tried putting her baby alive doll on it since the doll "pees" when you put water in her mouth. Our potty training attempt was the 3 day naked training (we did it the days it stormed since we wouldn't be leaving home) where you just keep the baby naked from the bottom down all day long and keep encouraging them to use the potty. Audrey loved this. EXCEPT when it was actually time to go. When she had to pee or poop, she would get off the potty and just start walking around the house crying until eventually she had an accident. This happened every single time she had to go for 2 days. She begged us to put a diaper on her, she even pulled the diapers out and tried to put it on herself. Poor thing. At first we thought she was just nervous and it would get better throughout the day, but it never did and we didn't like hearing her cry, so we stopped. I am torn between trying again in a month, or just waiting 2 months so that she will have time to adjust to the baby and then get moving on it. I also don't want to have to go to the trouble of training her only to have her regress back once the baby is here.
Look at that hair!
Other things...I had an appointment yesterday and am now on weekly appointments. yay! I love getting to check in every week so know that everything is going well. As of yesterday, I've gained 22 pounds, which I'm happy with. Unfortunately, we still have a ton of Halloween candy sitting around so I am constantly popping chocolate and other junk throughout the day. I am *this close* to throwing it all away. Probably once I finish eating all the Butterfingers. :) The babies heartbeat was at 121, still on the low side. Last appointment it was higher at 145. Wives Tales say that low heartbeat means boy, higher means girl. The Chinese Gender Predictor says Girl. My mom dreamed it was a girl, but then yesterday said the belly looks like a boy. Josh thinks girl....I go back and forth daily still. I'm thinking boy now. Little Joshua. So sweet. Oh, the doctor also went ahead and did a quick ultrasound to make sure that the baby is head down, even though both he and I already were pretty sure it was head down. And we were right! Head down and ready to go. If I can keep the baby that way for another week, it'll probably stay that way since they don't usually flip after 37 weeks, plus I have a small torso and there isn't a whole lot of room to flip anyways. It was reassuring to have that ultrasound, though, just to confirm. I am still on for a VBAC. My doctor keeps saying I'm such an easy patient. The only thing I'm worried about now is that I won't go into labor on my own. I'm like, REALLY scared of that. Originally, I thought that my doctor wouldn't induce at all for VBACs, but he told me last week that as long as I dilate to 1cm on my own, he can induce using various different methods. With Audrey, I delivered at 40 weeks exactly and had not had any contractions and wasn't dilated at all, so I think my fear of that happening again is probably a legitimate fear. I am doing all of the things I know of to get ready, like going on long walks and bouncing on my yoga ball, but for now that's all I really can do. I just hope my body will not fail me since I can only go to a little after 41 weeks without another C-Section. I try not to worry and get ahead of myself, but well, I'm me and that's just what I do.
At Cox Farms

Girl has good balance!
so look...I've updated once a week for two weeks! I'm on a roll! Maybe again next week? We can hope!

Thursday, November 1, 2012


Hello, November 1. Lets just pretend I'm not behind on blogging and that you are all up to date on everything! Just kidding, I'll update on as much as I can now before Audrey starts attacking the computer.

Last night was Audrey's third Halloween. Lauren suggested way back in August that we dress her as an Oompa Loompa and I said only if Josh and I can be Willy Wonka and Violet! Naturally, I procrastinated until one week before Halloween before I actually started thinking about how I'd make the costume. Josh's was easy - I just ordered it online. I wasn't sure what to do for my costume, and I am lame and ended up just wearing a blue shirt. Boooo. Josh did buy blue face paint and blue hair spray but I didn't feel like doing all that. He gave me a hard time about it, but whatever. So for the star of the show - here's her costume!

It was really easy to make. It would have been easier if my sewing machine wasn't broken, but that's another thing I've been putting off, so it still sits upstairs, not working, as it has for a year. Anyways, I bought some cream leggings (couldn't find white anywhere!) and painted stripes on the bottom of the legs with brown fabric paint. I was supposed to paint white stripes on the neck of the turtleneck but I never got around to it. Meh. I couldn't figure out what to do for the suspenders, so I ended up buying 2" elastic and using that. It worked perfectly! This is where it became a bit of a pain, though. I had to hand sew the elastic and the buttons onto the leggings. No biggie, except that once I had it all sewn on and I tried it on Audrey, it was like 4 inches too long! Not sure how that happened since I did measure her, but oh well. We had a party to go to on Sunday and I didn't have time to fix it, so I just had to safety pin the extra elastic. It looked good from the front, but in the back you could see the folded elastic. I fixed it in time for Halloween, but then I sewed the back too far apart (too close to her hips) and the straps kept slipping down her shoulders, so I had to safety pin them to her shirt. None of this really matters because she looked cute as hell anyways. We got SOOO many compliments on her costume.

We decided to go to the mall and trick or treat instead of the neighborhood since it was cold out and it would just be better overall for her age. I think it was a good choice! It was pretty packed and some stores had long lines (were they handing out free socks or something??) so we skipped those. Audrey was very good about waiting her turn when there was more than one kid in line, but she did get impatient when kids cut in front of her. At one store, there were like 5 girls that cut in front right when Audrey got to the front of the line so Audrey stood there holding out her bucket saying, "Audrey? Audrey? Audrey??". I felt so bad for her! But she got her treat and we moved on.

She's never really had candy before so this was mostly a new experience. Of course she loved it. Once she realized that she was getting something cool in her bucket, she just wanted to sit down in the middle of the mall and dig through it, so that was the end of trick or treating for us. We didn't let her have much last night because we wanted her to go to sleep without a fight, but I'll let her indulge a little bit today. See, I'm not ALWAYS a mean mama who deprives her child of goodies!
Ohh...we also did some trick or treating earlier in the day at Fairfax Corner. They had face painting (we didn't have the patience for that), pumpkin decoration, a train ride (big hit!), and the shops were giving out candy. We met up with a few friends and other toddlers and Audrey had a great time running wild, as usual. It was a fun and happy Halloween for us! Can't wait until next year!

Monday, August 27, 2012

Big girl getting bigger

Audrey has been growing and changing so much in the past few months. For one, she's definitely become a toddler, complete with meltdowns and tantrums and a mind of her own. So far we've never had a tantrum or meltdown out in public, but they happen at home every now and then. Most often it is because she isn't getting something she wants - like YouTube videos of Baby Einstein. I'll put them on the computer or tablet for her sometimes when dinner is taking up my attention or when I need to get some work done and respond to emails. I'd like to say that during these times, she is happy to play quietly in her room alone, but it seems that she can sense when I am busy and it is at that moment that she wants me to pick her up or play with her the most. So anyways, the videos. she loves them, but I will only let her have but so much screen time a day (about a half hour) so when I've decided its enough, she usually loses her cool. She doesn't get angry, she just gets sad and starts crying, which makes me sad...but I just explain to her that video time is over and we can watch more tomorrow.

She's talking a lot more. Both in terms of babbling, which she's always done, but also she is picking up more words all the time. My favorite words that she says right now are yellow - "Lellow-ow" and Zero, which she does actually say correctly. For some reason, she always says these two words very enthusiastically, practically yelling them. We'll be in the car sometimes and she'll start in with the "ZEROooo! Zeroooo!" and sure enough, they'll be a truck with a phone number or address containing the number zero. She picked that word up from her "number train" video on youtube. Its all good because she's learning her numbers, but now when I count and start from one instead of zero, she insists that I start over and begin with zero.

She's also very good now and identifying her letters. She can identify almost the whole alphabet if I ask her to point to them, but she can only actually say about half of them. I was shocked at how fast she picked them up. Her grandma bought her a magnadoodle to write on, and one day I just wrote her name and told her the letters. Then suddenly she was all "A!!" "EEeee" etc. The funniest one is U...because she calls it "Audrey". She'll say A,E,I,O, Audrey. Hahah! I love it. She has a hard time with some letters because they look alike - W/M, V/A (she turns the M and the V upside down and calls them W and A), E/F, T/I, N/Z, but overall I'm just impressed with the fact that she knows them. She tries to sing her ABCs sometimes and it goes like this: "A,B,D...." and that's it. :)
Riding the Train for the first time
She is also picking up her shapes and colors really fast, too. She knows oval, circle, square, and triangle (although when she says them, oval is the only one anyone can understand besides me). And for colors, she can find them if I ask her to, but the only one she actually says is YELLOW.

Josh picked up this awesome swing set from one of his customers at work...for free! We only had to pay to rent a truck to haul it over to our house, and Josh and dad got that done in a day. It is old and some of the wood is chipped (splinter waiting to happen) but so far it has been so great. Audrey loves the slide and we love being able to sit outside without chasing her all over the yard. This keeps her busy for a while usually and tires her out.

Obviously I've failed to update this entire summer and I have sooo many more pictures to share, so bare with me - I might just do a photo dump on here and leave it at that! More to come later. :)

Thursday, August 23, 2012

25 Weeks!

Here's a belly shot from yesterday - at 25 weeks pregnant (about 6 months) and a belly shot when I was 25 weeks pregnant with Audrey.

Do you notice the BIG difference? For one, I'm much bigger this time around (which is surprising, considering I've gained less weight so far). Blame it on a pre-used uterus I guess. The second thing is how much lower I'm carrying. I feel like this picture is kind of deceptive too. When I look in the mirror what I see is much bigger...and lower. According to the old wives' tales, this means I am having a boy. So as of like two days ago I'm sure its a boy. Ask me again next week and it will probably be a girl. I go back and forth daily. Josh thinks it is a girl. One of us is right.

Other than how I'm carrying, there are a few more differences in this pregnancy at this point. I'm more tired than I was last time. Although actually, I went back and read my baby book and at this same point in the pregnancy I said I was "exhausted" so maybe the truth is that I'm always just tired and really want a nap. Yeah, that sounds about right! However, compared to the earlier part of my pregnancy my energy is way up! I'm actually being productive during Audrey's nap time instead of taking a nap myself (though I do nap some days).
22 Weeks
We had our 20 week ultrasound a few weeks ago that looked at the baby's anatomy and made sure it all was in the right place and measuring right on track. Surprise, we didn't find out the sex. :) It was nice seeing the little baby bird in there and seeing him move around. At one point he was sucking his thumb and it popped out of his mouth and we got to see him scramble around to find his thumb again. It was adorable and made us all laugh. Other than that, he was pretty calm and didn't move around too much. But that was five weeks ago....now he is all over the place! Moving and kicking and jumping and apparently trying to climb straight out of my vagina already, or at least it feels that way because he's so low. I do not recall Audrey being this active this early in the pregnancy, either, but I'd have to go back and re-read. **Ok, I have a horrible memory. I just went back and read my blog from when I was 27 weeks and yes, apparently she was equally active and also was trying to claw her way out of my uterus.**

The baby feels much heavier than I remember Audrey feeling, too (but as we just discovered, I have a bad memory and nothing I "remember" should be taken as truth). Maybe part of the heaviness is that I'm carrying lower, so it feels more out front. Sometimes I feel like I need to sit down just after being outside with Audrey for a few minutes because it feels like my back is overcompensating for what's out front. Seeing as I still have 15 weeks left, this 'heaviness' scares me for what lies ahead. I picture myself at 35 weeks pregnant and unable to stand up. Maybe I should look into one of those belly bands that supposedly supports the belly.

There you have a thorough update as to how the pregnancy is going and how I'm feeling these days. I'll leave you with another picture of the little bird. Its a bad picture to begin with, plus its a picture of a picture because they didn't give me the photos on a disk. Sorry about that. Does this look like a boy? Or a girl?

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

17 Weeks

17 weeks this past Thursday, and yet I look as big as I did when I was 26 weeks pregnant with Audrey. Eek. Here are two photos side by side (take at 16 weeks). In one, I am standing up straight and maybe sucking in a little. In the other, I am standing how I normally stand - lazy, slouched, tummy pushed as far out as it goes. This is what I look like on a normal day.

Although I looks to be pretty far along, I actually am only now beginning to be able to feel my uterus move up and make my belly firm. I like that. :) I was laying in bed this morning and could feel it pushing up under my belly button. I haven't felt the baby move yet, but I think it will be any day now. The first flutter I felt with Audrey was at 17 weeks. Here is a pic of little baby bird at 16 weeks. It is not a great picture because the placenta was blocking her face, but here is a healthy looking spine!

I feel really good for the most part. My energy is back and Audrey and I have been busy bees finding fun stuff to do every day. Maria bought us a pool for the yard so we are enjoying that. On Friday, we went to the public pool for a the day and had so much fun!! Audrey loved being around all the other kids and sliding down the slide. It was great.
We've also made some trips to Fairfax Corner to play in the fountain there. Anything involving water is fine with Audrey! With this heat wave we've been having, we are either in water or in the house! Its too hot to go to the playground really, or do much of anything outside that doesn't involve sitting in cool water. Today I think we will make a short trip over to the fountain in Fairfax to wear the little girl out before nap time!