Friday, January 23, 2015

Frozen Happiness

We've been in the midst of Winter out here. Jackson has inquired multiple times why it's so much colder in the winter... he never seems satisfied by a distance change from the sun. Despite the cold, and numerous colds, we have found plenty of happiness sources.

First from the solidified water--

January brought a beautiful snow storm and the opportunity to use our Christmas present from Santa! Our little yard has the perfect bunny hill for preschoolers who don't require too much speed. I must say Santa's sled worked a lot better than last years make shift beauty.

I also got to teach Allie's little joy school class the past two weeks. I based the lesson plan off the book Snow, and wouldn't you know--both days it snowed! Amazing. These cutie pies loved playing in the real and fake snow they were provided with. And yes, that's my daughter who is going outside without a coat. (Even if it hadn't been in the car, I'm not sure she would have worn it...)

Secondly, from this little guy.

 We get so much joy from our solidly happy Porter, who can now smile. He first graced us around 5 weeks, and Mark caught it on his phone a few days later:

And lastly, we've come around to the Frozen craze a little late, but like all important trends, we get there at some point ;) Allie has taken on the very serious task of learning every nuance and word to each song from Frozen. This video captures some key components of her hourly ritual--like the ever important choreography, the attempts at getting the chorus timed right, and the loud, almost on pitch singing. Unfortunately, she peeters out by the end (very unusual) and we miss out on the blasted final note that is usually a quarter step off. But since we captured Jackson's sweet voice singing the words perfectly in the middle--I couldn't pass posting Allie's cover of "Let it Go:"

While we have thoroughly enjoyed all the happiness we find in winter, I have to join my shorts-wearing 4 year old and say, "when will it be summer?" Hopefully the warm weather will thaw our daily Frozen quota to only 2 complete daily listening, and bring on even more exciting things for cutie pie Porter.

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Maestra Allie

Oh my goodness. This girl has honed her conducting skill to the point of 2 year old perfection, and it is a blast to sing in her choir!

I think she should keep this next one for her future portfolio:

Though, her choir is pretty pathetic. Who was that soprano who changed keys in the middle of the song?! Such talent wasted! Perhaps we'll mention her skills to the bishop to have her called as the ward choir director, or better yet, a Sacrament meeting chorister. I think she could liven things up just a bit :)

Friday, January 2, 2015

Welcome Porter

Um... he's a solid 4 weeks now. 3rd child is definitely not our only focus, but he is completely loved by many 24-7.

Porter entered the world on Friday December 5th, at 10:05 pm. Weighing 8 lb 5 oz, and 21" 1/4 long.

 This little guy was due on the 30th of November. Since Jackson came 8 days early, and Allie was induced a week late, I was mentally prepared for either case. I don't think my parents were as willing to admit that he could come late (my Mom was convinced we'd need help by 12/2), but since 3 of her 4 grand-kids have now been induced post birth, I think she's ready to adjust her expectations for any more that might come.

Our insurance doesn't like babies to go beyond 41 weeks, so after we passed his due date, I had an inkling that we might be choosing his birthday. Friday was the chosen day (which by the way is super weird to choose and to anticipate). Allie's induction lasted all of 6 hours, so I figured if we had an 8 am induction we'd have a baby by noon or so ;)...

The benefit of the planned induction is being able to tell aunt Mitzi when to come and take over the house. We were so grateful that she was willing to drive 3 hours and wade through the fun of 2 year old tantrums so we could go bring life into the world.  Thank you aunt Mitzi!

 As we were preparing the night before his birth, I felt that the baby would come sometime in the next week if we didn't force an appearance--mostly because I felt my body changing and preparing for birth that last week (where as most of November felt very much the same as October). This is significant because I would much rather go into labor than be induced--but sometime we don't get that choice.

We entered the hospital at 3 cm, but Porter hadn't dropped completely, so we couldn't break his water. On came the pitocin, and what felt like 4000 new accessories. The belly monitors, the Oxygen monitor, the blood pressure cuff (that went off every 30 min and made my arm numb), 4 pokes in the arm to find a vein willing to accept gallons of water and the potocin that would enter my blood stream. I am really not an accessory girl, and was SO annoyed by all of these until we finally took the last thing off 8 hours after Porter came out. Seriously loathed.

This finger oxygen monitor was my least favorite, because I don't remember having to wear it with either other birth. I started out with the clip on, asked for a different kind, and then asked to switch hands. I felt SO handicapped by it. Kind of like having a paper cut during a large operation. I know this was all about expectations, and apparently I did not expect to have so many chords attached to me! Disclaimer: I know how lucky I am to be giving birth in a Hospital in America, where my baby is very likely to come out healthy because of all these monitors--but was so ready to tear all of them off after one hour of wearing them!

We started the Pitocin at 10:45 am. At noon, when I still hadn't had any labor-like contractions of pain, Mark had to help me remember that he was expecting this to be a marathon--many many hours, and I might want to make some major adjustments to my own expectations.

This was good advice, and I tried hard to get a new perspective, but at 5pm, the tears came out of shear frustration. I was completely swollen with pumped water--it was getting hard to move--totally exhausted from not eating, and I knew I still had to go through labor! I felt like I had been stuck in a rubber room with very little communication, and still no painful contractions. I was fairly sure we were still 3 cm. I was ready to go home and try again tomorrow (I just didn't really want to get poked again--my one motivation to stay). I really wanted to talk to my personal doctor, and just be communicated with.

Incredibly, my personal OB doctor walked in my room (verses the one who was on call that day). I started crying and gave her a huge hug and asked for her professional opinion on everything. She calmed me down in seconds, dispelled my fears, gave me options (one of which was going home).

Mark and my personal Dr left, and I sat and prayed. Oh how grateful I am for that quiet moment. I had the distinct impression to stay at the hospital, and trust the medical professionals I was working with. Oh what a shift in my attitude.

The Dr on call came in (who was a very good Dr--just very busy that day), I was 4 cm, dropped enough to break my water. We broke it at 6pm, I had instant insanely painful contractions, got the epidural after an hour, and with a little help in positions and petocin, Porter was born a 4 hours later--a little after 10pm. 4 contractions of pushing, and he came out!

He was our first kid to not poop in the womb (woot woot!), so I got to hold his sweet body right after it slid out. But then he forgot to breathe. SO, off he was whisked, and soon the emergency button was pushed because he still wasn't breathing. 10 nurses rushed in, and at the moment he screamed out. Oh what a relief for a parent to hear! That beautiful baby cry just brought happy happy tears to my eyes. We decided he just wanted a little attention.

The kiddos came to visit the next day. We knew it had the potential to be hard on Allie, but we thought it would have more to do with jealousy of being slid off my lap. We didn't quite anticipate how scared she would be at the hospital would be. She hates doctors offices, "Allie no like doctor" she'll say shaking her head very convincingly, and apparently she feels the same way about hospitals.

Jackson was adorably mature, and reacted well. Allie came around for a second, but definitely no in-hospital family picture!

We were so glad to have Aunt Mitzi! She enjoyed holding Porter :)

We left the hospital on Sunday, and having experienced discharging from the hospital 2x now, we knew it could take hours longer than expected, so we pushed hard to get out of there, and we got out of there before the expected time! Incredible. We picked up the kids from a friends house on the way home, and had the sweetest experience being all together in the car. They were both just SO excited to have Porter. Allie talked the entire way home about it, and I think her verbal skills jumped at least by 200 words over that weekend. It was so cute.

Allie by far is the most parent-like of the two siblings, she can hold Porter while he's crying for at least 20 min. It's hilarious. She'll just look down on his face and smile knowingly. Jackson adores holding him, but I have to stay next to him because he'll be done after 1 minuet, and he'll just pick him up or push him off his lap, saying "I'm done Mom" as he's doing it--it's a bit nerve racking!

Postpartum has been amazing. 3rd baby definitely slides out, and doesn't require my body to heal like that 1st baby`q. I feel like I only have to focus on tallying up how much sleep I've gotten each night, so I can determine how much I need to get during the day. The biggest healing I had to do was in my wrists where I got poked so many times! Check out the bruise!! I'm telling you. Worst part of the experience.

The house was extremely chaotic the first couple of weeks especially when everyone was awake, but as long as one person is asleep and the kids have something to do, we're in super good shape. I've had amazing help from Mark and my Dad who have taken care of the kids and cooked and cleaned, and made me feel like a queen. Love it.

Best part by far, is cuddling with this adorable little feller. Going back to real life has very little pull (and obviously writing a blog post)--when I could just look at him all day. Oh yum.

Welcome welcome welcome loved little boy!