6 months and some Kellen updates

Okay, so I’ve really sucked at blogging about the girls.  I’ve decided my goal is to do 3, 6, 9, and 12m for Raelee and at the same time throw in any Kellen updates I have 🙂  After Raelee turns a year old, I have no idea when I will blog–I’ll figure that out later.  Right now I just need to get through this first year!  Having two is tough :p

Wow!  Raelee is 1/2 of a year old already!  I can’t believe it!  At this time with Kellen, I was starting to plan her birthday party…..yeah, not going there yet :p

At 4 months she weighed in at 13lbs3oz (38th%), 24.25″ long (48th%) and 16.63″ head (81st%).

At 5 months she weighed in at 14lbs4oz (39th%).

And at 6 months she weighed in at 15lbs5oz (34th%), 26.25″ long (66th%) and 17″ head (69th%).

She rolled over at 16.5 weeks!  And unlike Kellen, she does it all the time.  Not just a few times and then pretty much never again 😛  She absolutely refuses to roll back to belly.  I know she can if she wanted to because she will roll almost all the way over to where half of her belly is down.  Then she realizes what is happening and rolls right back over to her back again.  Any time I put her on her belly, she is rolling to her back within seconds.  She is not a fan of being on her belly 🙂  She started sitting super early just like Kellen did!  Right after she turned 4 months old.  And then like a crazy little girl, she started getting mobile right around Christmas.  No, not by crawling–my girls are crawling boycotters!  Not that either of them could really learn how when they refuse to be on their bellies.  But she scoots on her butt!!!  It is amazing 🙂  At first she just did it on smooth surfaces, so the counter or table top or the tile floor (all supervised of course), but then shortly after she started doing it on carpet as well.  She does really well and goes across the room.  She will stay in the crawling stance for a few seconds if I put her there, but then she just lunges herself forward to get to whatever she wants.  And boy does she know what she wants!  She is super duper grabby!  You can’t put anything remotely near her without her taking a swipe at it.  My hair is getting pulled if I ever have it down, she tries to steal any food she sees…it’s quite funny actually.  She also will let you know if she’s pissed when you take something away from her.  Haha, Kellen was so much more laid back.  She’s still overall a really happy baby and doesn’t fuss too much.  She actually does seem to be liking the carseat less and less.  On the way to places, she is usually fine, but on the way home she is over it.

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Sitting early!

She loves her Jumperoo and goes absolutely nuts in it!  It is probably her favorite toy we put her in.  She’s a really good bouncer.  She likes to sit up in her whale tub during bath time.  She splashes like crazy!  And when she is laid back in it, she kicks like crazy.  I also bought a bath seat thing that doesn’t take up too much room for the nights that John works late and I need to get both girls ready for bed.  Sometimes I need to get them to bed around the same time depending on when naps were, so it helps.  She’s going to love swimming lessons–we start next week!  I will take Kellen on Tuesdays while Raelee is in the daycare and then Raelee gets to go Thursdays while Kellen is in the daycare.  I can’t wait to take her.  And Kellen is going to love being in the daycare for an hour–she always goes nuts with the toys in there when we drop and pick up Raelee.

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Loves sitting up in her whale tub

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Bath time with sister!

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Eating her toes after bath 🙂

She loves grabbing at toys–her favorite one lately is a Pampered Chef chip clip.  Everything you give to that girl goes straight to her mouth and she drools like crazy!  Her bottom 2 teeth popped out at 4.5 months and she barely made a peep about it!  Some extra drooly days and she didn’t eat very well for a few days, but then it was over!  I think she is about to get some more because she’s back to being super drooly again.  She tolerated the Bumbo for a little while and then started arching her back and wanted out of it really quick, so once she was sitting pretty well on her own, it got packed away.  She is still standing really well and it is one of her favorite things to do.  She can actually stand up and hold on to the activity table and stand there for 30 seconds or so on her own.  But she stands really well holding on to the coffee table–we have foam all the way around the sides, so she grabs on to that and it is perfect height for her to chew on the foam.  She’ll stand there for a minute or so.  She is recently getting the hang of walking when we hold onto her hands.  She crosses her feet over each other though sometimes so that slows her down a little.  We started trying the walker a few weeks ago and at first she just pushed herself backwards, but now she is doing pretty well at cruising around going forward.

2 teeth!

2 teeth!

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We are still letting her nap in the swing and swaddling her.  We are going to break her of it and put her in the crib for naps this weekend since John has it off.  She sleeps okay at night–usually 4 hour stretches at a time.  But sometimes I will get 6 or even up to 8 hours at a time.  But it’s somewhat rare.  She naps okay–when we are out and about , she wakes up every time the location changes.  So if we go from inside the car to inside a store, she usually wakes.  But unlike Kellen, she is still usually in a pretty good mood–even with a 15/20 minute nap.  At home in the swing she naps usually at least 45min but sometimes up to 2 hours.

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We had her try some oatmeal cereal around 5 months just to see where she was at.  She seemed to like it okay and did well.  And then I started giving her prunes every day or every other day at 5.5 months because this girl does not like to poop!  She isn’t constipated because it isn’t hard when she finally does go, but she just seems to have trouble getting things going.  It’s normal for a breastfed baby to go 7-10 days without pooping, as long as they are comfortable.  But usually by day 4 she is really showing discomfort–especially when eating.  We try belly massage and bicycle legs and they don’t really work.  The prunes sometimes work, but it takes a couple days even when I feed them to her regularly.  So we have glycerin suppositories and give her those when nothing else is working and she is visibly in pain.  They work right away so it is nice.  She seems to really like the prunes because when I have tried to give her oatmeal again, she gives me a dirty look and doesn’t really want to eat it.  And I bought too many yams for Thanksgiving, so I put some aside and made her puree from it, and she is not that interested in it either.  And she didn’t like bananas or avocados when we tried.  I feel like Kellen was a better solid food eater than she is so far.  But Raelee is my boob girl 🙂  Kellen never was a huge fan of breastfeeding.  She did it to get food and that was pretty much it.  Raelee would be on my boob all the time probably if I let her.  So we are taking solids kind of slow and hopefully she will catch on more as she gets a little older.  But if I want to wean after she turns a year old (I might want to go to 2–not sure yet and will play it by ear), I might have trouble with this one.

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Pretty girl :)

Pretty girl 🙂

Since the last blog post, we had Halloween, Thanksgiving a snow storm and Christmas!  Phew–lots to catch up with 🙂

For Halloween we went trick-or-treating with the Looney’s.  Kellen and Tyler rode in the wagon and I pushed Raelee in the stroller.  She was so good and ended up falling asleep towards the end.  Kellen did such a great job walking up to the houses.  She said trick-or-treat, but it was really quiet, so I don’t think anyone heard her 🙂  She loves the wagon too!  Her Auntie Tanya got her one for her birthday and once the weather is nice we will take it out.  She’s going to have a blast in it!  And by then Raelee should be able to ride around in it with her.

Thanksgiving was nice and simple here at home.  The Civil War was the next day, so my dad and Karen came up here and spent the night and Lindsey and Nainoa came over as well.  John got a smoker this past summer and loves smoking stuff on it, so we brined the turkey for the first time this year and smoked it.  It was amazing!  Kellen didn’t really eat any of the food though…she’s pretty picky still.

In mid-December, we had a big snow storm!  Well, big for us 🙂  We got close to 8″ and it stuck around for a long time because it was freezing!  Well, actually literally well below freezing.  It actually reached -11 degrees!  I’ve never seen it that cold before.  Kellen enjoyed the snow when we had her all bundled up.  I don’t think Raelee really noticed 🙂

Christmas was great 🙂  Kellen was not a fan of Santa.  We took her to the Valley River Mall early in December to beat the crowds/lines.  She would not sit in his lap, so John and I ended up getting in the picture as well.  Then I thought that we should have a picture every year showing the girls’ true reactions to Santa, so I took Kellen to the Gateway Mall Santa and took a picture myself–she was not happy!  I’m kinda mean, but I thought it was funny 🙂  She was completely fine as soon as I took her off his lap and started telling him how she wanted a bike.

For my birthday we went on the Christmas lights limo tour again and got a babysitter for the girls. It was a lot of fun. And we went to dinner after. It was nice to get an adult night out, but of course I thought about the girls the whole time and wondered what they were up to 🙂

Kellen figured out what presents were this year and had a blast opening her gifts.  It started the Monday before Christmas–we drove up to Vancouver, WA to see John’s grandpa and step-grandma.  We had a nice visit with them and went to lunch.  Then we drove to Beaverton to my Leepa’s house, and had a little mini Christmas with him and Ronnie and my mom.  And the super exciting part was my sister Tanya and her boyfriend Clarke came up from LA!  So we picked them up from Leepa’s and brought them back to our place and they were here with us for the rest of the week.  Lindsey and Nainoa came over on Christmas and Lea and her boyfriend, Brian, came down from Puyallup so it was the first time in like 9 years that all of us sisters were together on Christmas.  It was great!  I made prime rib…mmm.  Yummy.  And then Saturday my dad and Karen came up from Medford so Kellen and Raelee had one more Christmas.  I think Kellen likes some of Raelee’s toys more than her own though :p  Christmas Eve we went to the Children’s Mass at 5pm and we put her little angel wings on again.  She was so cute standing up there this year 🙂  She did really good.

Kellen is doing great!  She loves loves loves pre-school.  We had parent-teacher conferences in November, and they said she is doing great.  I was just a teeny bit concerned about her speech because she doesn’t exactly annunciate her words well, but they said for being one of the youngest in the class, she is doing great.  And her speech gets better every day!  She is now saying tons of sentences and does really well at telling us what she wants by using words.  She is so funny is the little things she says and has the cutest and sweetest little voice.  I personally think she is super duper smart–and it probably is totally biased :p  But she knows all her letters (when shown to her as upper case) and knows most of them in lower case.  She knows pretty much all the numbers up to 20, though the teens sound very similar when she says them.  She can count that high as well, but sometimes when she is playing and counting fast, she goes out of order and skips numbers 🙂  She has started singing the ABCs but it’s not super clear 🙂  She knows pretty much all her colors and a lot of shapes.  She knows and says her name (first and last) and that she is 2 years old.  She loves building and stacking right now.  And of course still loves playing with her balls–she loves throwing them and catching them, kicking and rolling!  And playing with her Little People sets.  We think for her next gift giving holiday, we will get her a doll house.

She still loves gymnastics class and does really well jumping with both feet off the ground either on the trampoline or just the floor.  We are going to be getting her a little trampoline here soon.  We converted the office/guest room into pretty much just a playroom except the built-in desk still has my computer on it.  We are going to be getting a sofa bed for guests, so it will still be somewhat of a guest room.  They have so many toys!  But Kellen loves the room and we play at least half the time we are home in there and the other half is in the living room.  Her favorite shows right now are Mickey Mouse and Super Why.  She does great with swimming–I’m hoping to continue challenging her in class so she is ready for the 3s class where she gets in the pool without me.  She got her first haircut and did great!  They barely cut anything off, but I just wanted it evened out and the longest little strings were pretty ratty looking.  I had to give her popcorn to distract her enough 🙂  She is now in a booster seat up at the counter with us.  The first few times I gave her an option of sitting in it or the high chair and she always chose the booster.  So now just Raelee sits in the highchair.  We use FaceTime on the iPad every Sunday night to talk to John’s parents.  She calls my dad and John’s dad, “Bapa.”  It’s pretty cute 🙂  She doesn’t really say grandma, but when she does it basically sounds like mama.  She’s been a little obsessed with shoes lately–she loves putting on our shoes and walking around and John’s hats too.  She really loves these Crocs that used to be her cousin Savannah’s.  They are still too big for her but we think she loves them because she can get them on and off easily.  She even demands they are in her bed at night…haha, silly girl.  We haven’t started potty training yet but plan to in the next couple months.  She has always loved sitting on her potty and reading potty books and watching potty shows, but just recently started telling me when she poops.  And in the past couple days, I can tell she doesn’t like the feeling of poop in her diaper because she walks funny 🙂  And she willingly gets her diaper changed–normally she throws a fit.  So steps in the right direction!

She is just the sweetest girl.  She loves to share with her friends, and she gives hugs and kisses.  She doesn’t hit or push or yell when playing either.

We are so blessed with our amazing little girls 🙂

What? A quarter way through the 1st year already??

Wow, I can’t believe Raelee is 3 months old already! This past month literally flew by. I was thinking yesterday about how it’s only a couple months until my birthday and it seriously does not feel like it was a year ago that I turned 30! This has to be the quickest year of my life. SLOW DOWN!! My babies won’t be my babies forever :/

Raelee is doing great! She weighed 12lbs2oz on her 3 month-day.  That puts her in the 48th percentile so she dipped down a bit.  Not sure why, but I’m going to try not to stress about it 🙂  She just started wearing 3-6m clothes.  It’s so weird to have a baby wear clothes when they were meant to be worn!  I put her in jammies last night that Kellen was wearing when she was 6m old :p

Here are the pictures I took in her room and then also I did some special ones at Lonepine Farms when we went to go get pumpkins last weekend.

As you can tell from some of those pictures, she is pretty interested in her feet lately.  Especially when they are bare.  She hasn’t tried to grab them yet, but she stares at them a lot. She also loooves to chew/suck on her hands and still tries to suck her thumb at times.  She has to be the smiliest (totally not a word :p) baby ever.  She is so happy all the time and only really fusses when she is fighting sleep and when she’s hungry.  She doesn’t like the car that much, but she’s getting better.  Her and Kellen switched sides in the car because Kellen is forward facing now!  I wanted Raelee on the passenger side so I could see her in the mirror.  I moved the mirror down a bit and now put the handle down when she’s in the car so she can see really well and so I can reach back to give her the paci easier.  Raelee likes to catnap throughout the day–some naps are 15 minutes.  But she never seems cranky!  As long as she gets 15-20min in she seems to be a happy camper when she wakes up 🙂  She is still awake anywhere between 1 and 2 hours max in-between naps.  We moved her into her crib on September 29th when she was almost 13 weeks old.  It was a couple rough days where she was up every couple hours, but now she sleeps 5.5-7.5 hour stretches and then 2-3hrs more after that.  Sooo much better than Kellen.  I decided to move her up there because she was sleeping 7+ hours in our room after I started swaddling her at night.  She wasn’t sleeping well, so I figured it was worth a shot.  The reason I like babies to room in is so I don’t have to trek all the way to the other side of the house and then up the stairs a million times per night.  She’s also a light sleeper like Kellen was so we could barely make any noise in our room and risk waking her.  I sleep better with her up there too because I’m also a light sleeper.  I have to say, it is really nice to have a baby without reflux–I truly believe that was a lot of Kellen’s issues as a baby.

She is getting more efficient at eating so nursing session usually take 15 minutes tops–but she still has marathon sessions.  She is much more of a boob girl than Kellen was and it makes me hopeful that she will want to nurse until closer to 2 years old.  That was my goal with Kellen, but she was so over it so we stopped shortly after her 1st Birthday.  My milk supply is a little better this time around but I do not have really any over-supply at all.  She takes a bottle really well and loves her pacifier.  At this point she usually poops once per day but sometimes none or 2-3 times.

She doesn’t protest as much as Kellen did with tummy time, but she hasn’t rolled yet either.  Kellen did at 2m belly to back and 4m back to belly.  But she only did a few times and then wanted nothing to do with rolling for a long time.  Raelee squirms pretty good and can actually travel some short distances because of it–makes me wonder if I will have a baby that crawls this time 🙂  She drools A LOT!  I’m going to have to invest in some bibs I think because I used Kellen’s cloth type ones when she started eating solids as well and a lot of them were ruined.  Kellen wasn’t a big drooler so it was really the only time I used bibs.  I think Raelee will probably get worse when she actually does start really teething.

She still absolutely loves to stand–she’s been stamping her little feet for a while, but just recently actually started to bring them forward in a walking motion.  So I might have another early walker on my hands.  She also likes to sit up so we’ve been getting a good amount of use out of the Bumpo this time around.  I also brought down the Jumperoo and put her in there at 13 weeks and she loves it.  She can only do either of them for maybe 10-15min before she gets tired and wants to be held.  She is wanting to lay on her play mat less and less but if needed I can usually put her there for 5 minutes or so and she’ll be happy.  She is slowly starting to reach for things.

Her Baptism was great 🙂  She looked beautiful in her dress and was an angel all of Mass 🙂

Raelee 2 months

Raelee had her 2 month appointment at 7 weeks because our Pediatrician likes to since there is a whooping cough outbreak in the area.  She weighed 10lbs12oz (66th percentile), 22.5″ long (73rd percentile), and her head was 15.5″ (79th percentile).  So she’s our perfect little above average girl 🙂  When I weighed her at 2 months, she was about 11lbs5oz.  We also found out that a red mark that appeared below her lower lip on the left side is what they call a strawberry birthmark.  I thought it was from her paci rubbing wrong, but nope.  I think it is kind of neat 🙂  Our pediatrician said it will probably get bigger and then will usually fade away around the age of 2.  Here are her 2 months pictures–I love the one of her and Kellen 🙂  And I decided to take some of her in the Baptism dress.  I only have some of Kellen wearing it at the church, so thought I would get some that showed more detail 🙂

Time is just flying by!!  Raelee is such an adorable baby.  She loooooves to smile and coo and she even attemps little laughs 🙂  She loves loves loves to stand up–she supports all her weight on her legs for a good length of time, we just help her with balance.  She really likes to sit too so she hangs out in the Bumpo daily for at least a little bit.  We can get a few minutes when she’s on her play mat.  She has a mermaid toy that we hung from the bars and she likes looking at her.  She naps in the swing and usually fights sleep except for maybe her first morning nap.  So when she gets put in the swing, she usually starts fussing.  But she’ll stay in there for a long time and nap and even hang out in there when she wakes up.  She’s awake on average for about 1.5hrs but has gone as short as 1hr between naps or up to over 2 hours between naps.  From the start of one feeding to the start of the next is still about 2 hours.  Sometimes 1hr45min but also has gone to 3hrs or so, but usually only because she’s napping.  We do have a good Eat, Play, Sleep routine.  At night she usually gives me between 3 and 4 hours for the first stretch.  Recently the second stretch is usually the same length and then after that it’s about 1.5-2hrs.  She falls asleep really great after nursing, but she struggles with gas in the early hours of the morning.  We’ve been using the Windi and it works pretty well most mornings.  She takes a paci and a bottle well, but she spits out her paci sometimes recently to suck her thumb!  Ugh.  I can take away the paci, but I can’t take away her thumb!  I’m hoping it is just a phase :p  I’m not very good at remembering to do tummy time–we are really busy every day until about 2:30pm when we finally get home.  Then they usually both nap and I run around the house trying to get chores or photography things done.  I need to be better about it 🙂

Raelee 1 month!

What??? 1 month old already?!?! That first month just flew by! I have a bad feeling time in general is just going to fly by now–2 kids keep me super busy.  I don’t want them to grow up too fast!

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Things are going well!  Raelee is overall a pretty easy baby.  She gets the typical fussiness in the evenings but I usually just plop her in the Moby and if necessary I will hang out by the stove with the hood fan on for a few minutes.  She’ll fall asleep and be good.  The middle of the night is her gassy time.  And she’s in pain 😦  The first couple weeks she gave me 4-5 hour stretches at night but this past week I get maybe 3-4hrs for the first stretch and then she’s up every 2hrs or so after that.  And it’s been taking her a while to get back to sleep since she is having gas pains.  I think she might be going through a growth spurt as well because a couple of the nights she has me up every 2hrs or less all night.  I’m trying to tell myself to be patient and that it will get better 🙂  And she already is a better sleeper than Kellen.  But it doesn’t seem like she has an reflux signs.  And I haven’t had to swaddle her, which I’m glad because I really hated breaking the swaddle with Kellen.  During the day I try to have her eat every 2hrs, which is usually what she wants anyway.  She’s been napping in the swing which I told myself before her arrival that I wanted to have her nap in our room in the Rock N Play, but the few times I have tried, she wakes up fairly quickly and wants no part of it.  Maybe someday 🙂

We did have a tough night on her 5th night after birth.  We were home and she was inconsolable starting around 7pm.  It was really bad and my mommy instincts were telling me something more was wrong than just the typical newborn fussiness.  Around 1am I told John I wanted to call the pediatrician.  I talked to the advice nurse and she was concerned that it could be a bowels issue and told me to take her to the ER 😦  So I got to the ER around 2am and she was still screaming.  The only time she stopped was if I was nursing her.  The ER doctor said that he could tell she was in obvious pain, but after his whopping 5 minute exam, he said he didn’t see anything wrong with her.  Ugh, what a waste.  But I don’t regret taking her–it’s better to be on the safe side I believe.  We got home around 4am and she passed out in our bed and didn’t wake up for over 4 hours.  Poor thing was so tired 😦  She was much better the next day and hasn’t had any issues since.  We think maybe she got a little bit of a bug.  My dad was watching Kellen while we were at the hospital and when he got home the next day he started not feeling well.  Friday it hit us–Kellen projectile vomited all over the living room (she has never done that) and had a fever and John and I had bad diarrhea and upset stomach.  It was no fun–but we thought that Raelee had missed it.  John and I didn’t have a fever, and neither did Raelee, so maybe her belly was just really upset like ours.  Either way, I felt horrible and we were all glad when we started feeling better by that next Monday.

We have let her sleep in our bed quite a bit.  She wasn’t liking the Rock N Play the first couple weeks, but I think that was because she just wanted to sleep on or right next to me all the time.  She is so much more a mama’s girl than Kellen was.  The first week she pretty much cried anytime I wasn’t holding her.  She warmed up to John by the 2nd week and now she is better about being in the swing or in the Rock N Play.

It’s not too bad doing things and getting out and about with both the girls.  Since Raelee sleeps almost all the time, it makes it nice 🙂  I’m sure once she has longer awake periods and wants more interactions, it might get difficult.  We have been doing all of Kellen’s normal activities except for swimming, which we will start up again in September.  I’m also going to try to get back into Bootcamp in September.  Hopefully I will have time for all of it 🙂  I’ll be gone out all morning every day doing Kellen’s activities and then home for lunch, then Bootcamp, then nap time, and then it will be dinner pretty much.  Yikes–not sure when I will get chores done around the house…..  I guess we will just figure it out.  Kellen is still great with her–she’s always trying to give her hugs and kisses and tries to share snacks and toys with her 🙂

Here are her newborn pictures that I took–it was harder than I thought to do them on my own, so it was over a 3 day period.

Here are more pictures from her first month 🙂

Raelee’s Birth Story

Raelee’s Birth Story

Short story:
Raelee Maurine was born on 7/2/13 at 6:25pm after 16hrs of labor. She was surprisingly huge weighing in at 9lbs3oz, 19.5″ long and 14.5″ head.

Long story:
I was a little discouraged after my 40 week appt on Monday (when I was actually 39w3d–with the holiday week and Dr. B being off on Fridays, I was limited for when I could get in). There was zero change from the previous Thursday’s 39w appt where I was 1-2cm 80% effaced. And she was still very high up.

I had also started rethinking my birth plan. I was in a lot of pain for at least the last couple months of the pregnancy. It hurt to walk or roll over in bed or pick Kellen up or get up from sitting. Really, it was ridiculous, not to mention exhausting. I started dreading labor because I remember the pain I had with Kellen and I really was over pain. And labor was much much worse than the pain I was already feeling. I at least looked forward to Kellen’s labor even though I knew pain came with it (I had experienced painful contractions with my 2nd miscarriage). I thought about going into it knowing I would get the intrathecal again, but with it only lasting 2hrs, I was nervous. After having it for 2hrs and then going back to no pain meds at 10cm and having to labor down….yeah not fun. So the thought of an epidural started crossing my mind. I pretty much was thinking no though because I really hate the idea of being totally numb and I wouldn’t want it to stall my labor and lead to a c-section.

I woke up on Tuesday, 7/2/13 at around 2am with contractions…but I stayed in bed for an hour because I wasn’t sure that was what they were. Kellen’s felt just like menstrual cramps coming in waves. These felt like just annoying pain in my right hip and my back. But by 3am I knew they were coming in waves and were timeable–about 4min apart and lasting about 40sec. I woke John up around 3:30 and told him he wasn’t going to work. I called my dad because he was coming from 3hrs away to stay with Kellen for us. Them I labored on the ball or walking around or in semi hands and knees with my upper body on the ball. I actually was feeling hungry off and on so over the 6hrs I labored at home I ate a bowl of cereal, an apple and some Fig Newtons. We called Dr. B’s office at 8am when they opened so he would know he would probably have to leave later that day. I didn’t think he would want me to come to the office this time around–I thought with Kellen it was because I was a first time mom and he wanted to make sure it wasn’t a false alarm. I was wrong–he wanted to see me this time too. I felt I wasn’t as far as Kellen because I was still doing well. We got to Dr. B’s office around 8:15 and I was right–I was only 4cm. He still wanted me to go to the hospital and said I should progress about 1.5cm per hour. I wasn’t very excited about it, but I really didn’t like laboring at home with Kellen there (I locked myself in our bedroom).

We got to the hospital around 9am and our nurse was Kathy. Had to get a hep lock and she blew veins twice on my left arm and hand. Hurt soo bad. She asked another nurse to help and she got it on my right arm her first try. She put the wireless monitor on me and told me I was free to move around. I labored with just John for a while and the contractions got more intense. I had him apply counter pressure to my back and hips since it was pretty much all back labor pain. Kathy came back in around 10:30/11am and asked if I wanted to get in the jacuzzi. It wasn’t that great with Kellen but I think it was because I didn’t really try very hard to find a comfortable spot since I got in there so late with her. So I said yes and got in once it was full. It felt amazing between contractions and helped during–John used a cup to pour warm water on my belly during a contraction since it was outside of the water. I stayed in there until about 12:40 when Dr. B came and wanted to check my progress. I was only at 6cm and he wanted to break my water. I knew it was going to make contractions worse, but he told me it would also make them more effective, so I said okay. And man, the worse contractions hit pretty much right away. I was dying. I couldn’t move from the bed except to get in somewhat hands and knees with the head of the bed straight up and down and me leaning over it. John kept applying counter pressure, but it was not really helping. I started getting really vocal. This was close to when Lea and Lindsey arrived. They later told me I was kind of a buzzkill because they came to the hospital all excited and when they came in the room and saw me, their mood immediately changed since they saw how much pain I was in. Dr. B came back at 1:10 to check me again and I had progressed to a 7 so I did make good progress in a short amount of time. But it didn’t really make me feel any better. About 30 minutes later I started telling John that I was thinking about pain relief. He asked if I wanted the intrathecal again and I told him I didn’t think so because it would only last 2 hours. He asked about the epidural then and I said I was nervous because I didn’t want to be completely numb and I didn’t want it to stall labor. I was already thinking about how everyone says the 2nd+ labor is supposed to go quicker but I knew it wasn’t really. I already felt like it was going slower. We talked for a few minutes more about it and decided to go with it so we paged the nurse. She wanted to discuss all my options including IV meds, but I didn’t want to go that route and be all loopy. So she said she would call Dr. B to have him call it in to the anesthesiologist.

I felt like it took him forever to get there, and I forgot that the intrathecal works right away, but the epidural takes a little time. He had to insert the catheter twice because the first time didn’t work so it was somewhat painful. When it did start working, I was surprised that I could still feel and move my legs. I asked and Kathy said that they recently have actually started using lower dose amounts because they want us to be able to feel a contraction, but without the pain. It was actually just like the intrathecal! But I could actually feel the contractions more than I could with the intrathecal. I immediately thought that I made a good decision, but then thought that the contractions were not coming as quickly, so I asked about that and was worried about stalled labor. She said I was still having them and that they looked good and strong still. I had to keep switching from side to side because it would stop working on one side. But John and my sisters and I were able to have conversations.

There was a shift change around 3:15 and our new nurse was Danielle. She checked me at 3:26 by request of Dr. B because he had a scheduled c-section at 4pm. I was at an 8. Shortly after that, the contractions started getting painful and I asked if it wasn’t working or something and she said that Raelee was probably moving down and I was getting closer and to make sure to tell her if I felt any pressure or pushy. She reminded me about the button that I could use to get more meds whenever I wanted and I felt like I was pushing it with every contraction. They were more manageable than before getting the epi, but they were still very painful. She kept asking me if I felt the urge to push and I kept saying no. But I also said that she was still probably high up and that with Kellen I never got the urge to push either and I had no meds when I was at 10cm with her. She decided to check me around 5pm since it seemed like the contractions were very close and painful. I was complete. Dr. B came in a couple minutes later and he asked if I felt pressure–when I told him no he wanted to double check and he also said I was ready to push, but yes, she was still high. So they got somewhat set up and at 5:10 I started pushing.

Wow, it was night and day from pushing with Kellen. Pushing was so so painful with her, and this time it was so much easier. I could feel and move my legs but when I pushed I wasn’t feeling it that well so I was nervous that I wasn’t pushing right. After a little bit, I asked if we should turn off the epi because of that reason and Dr. B and Danielle said I was pushing great and that she was coming down and I was making a lot of progress. I did stop pushing the button though so I think it wore off more because I started feeling pain in my right hip when I was pushing. After about an hour of pushing Dr. B told me that her head was having trouble getting around my pelvic bone and once I got her past that and her shoulders, she would be here. I had started getting exhausted by that point and I don’t think my pushing was as effective. But I think him telling me that gave me a little bit more energy. I guess I was sooo close to getting her past it, but again, it wasn’t happening. I asked jokingly if he could just reach in and grab her out, and he said he was hoping he wouldn’t have to help me but we would see. I didn’t quite get what he was saying but then a few minutes later, Danielle was on the phone and requesting NICU because they were going to use the vacuum. That freaked me out and I said I didn’t want the vacuum. Dr. B said he was hoping we wouldn’t need it, but that she was stuck. I tried with the next contraction and I guess it didn’t work because with the one after he did use the vacuum. But he had it on for about 15 seconds he said and then after that I was able to get her head around the bone. The NICU team didn’t come in. The next contraction she crowned. I couldn’t necessarily feel the ring of fire like I did with Kellen, but it was painful and I knew she was right there. The next contraction after that I got her head out and Dr. B said to just keep pushing. With Kellen I remember once her head was out, her body just slipped out so easily, but I had to push pretty good to get Raelee’s shoulders out as well. She was born at 6:25pm and put on my chest. She started to pink up pretty quickly and she cried shortly after as well. It was such a relief. With Kellen she was blue and not making any noise and then the NICU whisked her off–I didn’t have those emotional moments of joy right after. I got that this time! I started crying with her first cry and I looked at John and he was teary eyed 🙂 Dr. B was able to wait to clamp the cord and she stayed on my chest for the next couple of hours. I remember noticing and saying that she had big hands 🙂

I had one 2nd degree tear and a couple “finger nail” sized tears, so not too horrible I guess. Of course him pushing on my belly to help deliver the placenta hurt, but otherwise, repairs went much better than with Kellen as well. And it was helpful that I was holding Raelee during it. Looking at pictures, her head had a lot of blood on it. We noticed later there was a cut on her head and a pinwheel type bruise–we are thinking it must be from the vacuum.

Even though it was close to bedtime, I had John tell my dad to bring Kellen. I was so excited to see her and introduce her to her baby sister. She didn’t know what to think at first. She kept looking at me and I think she was concerned. Lea put her up on the bed and she said “Baby!” She just looked for a couple minutes and softly touched her. Then I had John give her her present from Raelee. It was a battery operated dog that makes sounds and walks. She was so excited. She got down and played with Lea and Lindsey and the dog. Then they took Raelee to weigh her and give her a bath. Everyone was saying she was big and the nurse asked for guesses. I said 8lbs2oz and others guessed similar and the nurse guessed 8lbs7oz. She put her on the scale and we were absolutely shocked!! No wonder I was in so much pain towards the end! And with her noggin size and then seeing her shoulders I realized why I was having trouble pushing her out! She cried pretty good with bath but was content under the warmer. Someone picked Kellen up and told her to give Raelee a kiss good-bye. She did 🙂

Then everyone left and John held Raelee while I showered. I felt good! I wasn’t numb except for in the vaginal area and I felt so much stronger than after Kellen (I almost passed out and 2 nurses had to help me). Then we packed everything up on a cart and made it down to our Mommy & Baby Unit room. She was still nursing great and we actually had to wake her up a couple times at the 3hr mark! And she slept great in the bassinet. The next morning Dr. B and our pediatrician Dr. Bradshaw can by before 8am. Raelee looked perfect! All her numbers and test results were perfect! Yay, no extended stay or NICU visit!! They both released us so a few hours later we paged the nurse to see about leaving. She got started right away (her name was Jo and she was awesome!) but it’s a process so we got out of there around 1:30–about 19hrs after she was born. Kellen was napping when we got home, and we started settling in.

She hasn’t been sleeping that great at night, but we know she will eventually. But she’s a very chill baby. We absolutely love our new family of four 🙂

39 weeks #2

Symptoms?:  I thought I was tired before, but this past week I have been exhausted! I’ve been napping when Kellen naps most days. Still more contractions but the good news is they are productive. At my OB appointment yesterday I was 2cm dilated and 80% effaced. With Kellen at the same appointment I was 1cm 70% and had her 6 days later, so maybe Raelee will be here in the next 5 days or so. My feet are pretty swollen most days too.

Weight gain?: Up 22lbs

Best thing that happened this week?:  Finding out the annoying contractions are at least productive 🙂

Movement:  Still quite a bit.

Any baby-related purchases this week?:  Nope

Nursery progress:  It’s done!  Has been 🙂

Milestones reached?:  Not really

What size is the baby?:  A watermelon

Belly picture:

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Things are about to be soooo different….

My beautiful, sweet Kellen:

I’m writing this here because someday I plan on sharing this blog with you and your sister.  And any other children we may be blessed with having.

Your dad and I just put you down for the night.  As usual, your love and sweetness shined as you gave us both kisses and hugs and then repeatedly blew kisses while we said goodnight.  I’ve known this is coming.  I haven’t been in denial.  But it’s feeling very real right now.  Our lives are forever going to be changed within the next week or so.  Your dad and I are so excited for Raelee’s arrival.  We can’t wait to see what she looks like, to see how you interact with her, to watch her grow as an individual, and to watch you both grow together.  But I’m still sad.  I’m sad that our days of Mommy and Kellen are numbered.  I have loved every single moment of these past 21+ months.  You have helped me grow and learn as much as you have been doing it yourself.  Nothing in this world has meant more to me than you.  I am so lucky to be your mom.  These have been the best days of my life.  You are the light that shined through the darkness of loss and heartbreak.  You answered our prayers.  And now Raelee will answer our prayers again and help us to complete our family.

I’m sad that you will probably be hurting and struggling in the first few months or so after Raelee arrives, as much as an almost 2 year old can hurt.  As a mom, I never want you to hurt.  I want to protect you from all harm–emotionally and physically.  But I don’t know how to protect you from this, besides loving you and Raelee as much as humanly possible.  I know someday you will be fine.  You will be so grateful you have a sister.  I have 3 wonderful sisters, and I don’t know what I would do without them.  Raelee will be your best friend, even through fights over bathroom time, clothes and just day-to-day life.

I don’t know how to exactly put my feelings into words right now.  I just know that tears are streaming down my face…but at the same time I’m smiling listening to you read books on the monitor, when you should be in your bed sleeping.  You are amazing in every possible way.  I can’t wait to see you be a big sister.  I do and always will love you with all of my heart.

Love,

Mama

38 weeks #2

Symptoms?:  Started getting contractions a couple nights ago.  Raelee actually woke me up around 5am from moving around so much.  It hurt!  And she hasn’t moved like that in a while.  It went on for a while and I noticed menstrual type cramps coming in waves so I knew they were contractions.  So then I wondered if she was causing them from moving so much, or if she was moving because I was having contractions.

Weight gain?: Up 21lbs

Best thing that happened this week?:  Nothing too exciting.  Just another good week with Kellen 🙂

Movement:  Still quite a bit.

Any baby-related purchases this week?:  I got some honey sticks for the hospital to give me some energy when I need it.  Also got a small can of WD-40.  I remember the rocking chair squeaked sooo bad when we were there with Kellen.  And Laura just had Jacob a couple weeks ago and said they still do and they asked the nurse about it and I guess they aren’t allowed to oil them up or something.  So I’m smuggling some in and doing it myself 🙂

Nursery progress:  It’s done!  Has been 🙂

Milestones reached?:  I can’t believe we only have a couple weeks to go!

What size is the baby?:  A pumpkin

Belly picture:  A comparison since I’m wearing the same shirt.  37 weeks with Kellen and 38 weeks with Raelee.  I’m for sure bigger this time!  But I’ve gained 3 less pounds.

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Full Term! #2

Symptoms?:  Same as the last few weeks–getting more painful to move around.

Weight gain?: Up 19lbs. So last week was just a weird fluke I guess. I even asked my OB’s nurse my weight gain and they actually had none for the week I thought I was up 4lbs. Weird.

Best thing that happened this week?:  Kellen and I gave John new pictures for his Father’s Day gift–he loved them 🙂

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Movement:  Same–I can feel more of her limbs now though. Or possibly they are feet/hands. They are small and I’m usually just feeling her bum and back.

Any baby-related purchases this week?:  Had to get replacement batteries for the Snuza.

Nursery progress:  I got a yellow frame on clearance at Target yesterday 🙂 No set plans on what to put in it, but I’m sure I’ll find something.

Milestones reached?: 37 weeks–FULL TERM!

What size is the baby?:  A winter melon (whatever that is–she’s really the size of a watermelon!)

Belly picture:

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