Thursday, September 29, 2011

Lyla, Month I

To My Lyla:

This past month has been the fastest and slowest month ever! You are now six weeks old and I am just sitting down to write to you about your first month of life. Things have been pretty crazy around here lately and it seems that I can hardly find a moment of free time. But I wouldn't have it any other way. I am cherishing every moment that I get to be your mom ... even those middle of the night feedings!

Your first month was filled with ups and downs. Adjusting to life outside of the womb has not been the easiest for you and you have let us know with a great deal of fussiness. I always say that babies should come with an instruction manual and you are no exception. But we are getting things sorted out, and despite the fussiness you are the sweetest baby girl.

I feel so lucky to have you in our family. I can't get enough of your cuddles. I find myself holding you long after you are asleep just to get in some extra baby snuggle time. I am enjoying the newborn you because I know that you are growing before my eyes and soon you won't want to cuddle your mama any longer. Your brother and sisters love you so much and are constantly asking to hold you. They look after your needs and always let me know when you are crying. Your Daddy loves you too and seems to have the magical touch that can put you to sleep when no one else can.

You are the pretty standard newborn. When you aren't crying, you are eating, sleeping, or pooping! You hate the car and scream whenever we go anywhere! This makes it hard because as the 4th child of the family you will spend a great deal of time running your older sisters and brother around. Hopefully you will adjust!

You are becoming quite the sleeper. Several nights you have slept through the night. But it hasn't always been so great! There were a couple of really rough nights. Now that you have learned to love your swing things are going much more smoothly ... and mommy is getting some more rest!

We love you baby girl! Happy one month!
Your Momma

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Monday, September 19, 2011


Here are cute little Lyla's newborn pictures

I'm head over heels in love with this little ones toes ...

her wild and crazy hair ...

her perfectly pink lips ...
her cute as a button nose ...

her chubby little arms ...

and her little bum!

Just looking at these pictures makes me want to go upstairs, sweep her out of her crib, and snuggle her all day!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

how quickly I forget ...

... baby snuggles
... impossibly small baby toes
... constant feedings
... that feeling of being completely overwhelmed
... frog legs
... what 1:30 am feels like
... the incredible amount of diaper changes
... adorable ruffled baby bum
... soft baby skin
... non stop crying
... the feeling of complete and utter exhaustion
... what 3:30 am feels like
... the incredible love you can have for someone you just met
... just how messy the house gets with a new baby
... baby acne
... that the older kids will need something right when I sit down to feed the baby
... what it feels like to be peed on ... and pooped on ... and spit up on
... the look of a swaddled burrito baby
... having an entire closet full of clothes yet nothing fits
... playing dress up
... the constant swaying, bouncing, rocking, and pacing
... the new baby smell
... pacifiers
... formula dust on the counter
... kissable baby cheeks
... how much I love the swing
... clenched little fists
... big bright eyes that should be sleepy eyes
... what it's like to eat without holding a baby
... those sweet baby sounds
... full body stretches
... sleepy smiles
... delicate baby fingers wrapped around mine
... how tiny newborns are and how quickly they grow and change

but it's all coming back to me now!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Rapunzel Party!!!

Shortly after Lyla was born I threw Sophie a Rapunzel party. It was sort of put together last minute ... totally not my style ... but honestly one of the funnest parties we have had at our house.

a party isn't complete without decorations!

i LOVE. LOVE. LOVE. these shot of her

we played "hit flynn with the frying pan!"
check out the happiness!

we opened presents!

we sang "Happy Birthday" and ate some yummy cake

we played "musical spots" {the losers danced in the middle}

which led to an impromptu dance party ...

that turned out to be the biggest hit of all!

The party was a success and I LOVED seeing Sophie smiling and having a great time with her cute friends. I can't believe she is seven. She is getting too big! Happy Birthday Sopher Bug!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Sis gets her ears pierced!

For months Sophie has been asking to get her ears pierced. A few of her cute friends had it done and she wanted it done too! Logan and I decided that she could get it done for her birthday. We planned a surprise outing for her complete with ear piercing. However after getting there her nerves got the best of her and she decided not to get it done ... we got Orange Julius' instead. Later that night she wished she had done it. So the next day we headed to the mall and got those ears pierced! She was so nervous, but so brave and she didn't even cry! She loves them and can't wait until she can change them out every day! She is so into accessories!

What a cute girl!

Just because ...

she is precious ... and I can't get enough of her!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Little Mommy

Ruby has taken so well to being a big sister.
She {LOVES} Lyla like crazy and always refers to her as "my baby".
She likes to hold her
play Barbies with her
pet her +
{love} her!

In the hospital ...

I loved watching my kids meet little Lyla for the first time. I am amazed at the love they have for her already.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Birth Story of Lyla Kate :: Her and His Version

Her Version:
The day started out just like any other. I woke up so bummed that it was D-day and I was STILL pregnant. I had a doctors appointment that afternoon so I got ready and mentally prepared myself for no change.

11:30 - I went to my appointment and much to my surprise I had dilated from a 1 to a 3 and my cervix was soft. I asked my doctor to strip my membranes. Luckily, she agreed. We talked about induction {something I was trying to avoid due to the fact that I wanted a natural med free birth} ... she left it up to me. I went home to talk with Logan about what we should do.

After thinking about it more and more I decided that I wanted to be induced the next day {August 19th}. This way if all went well I would be home for school to start and Sophie and Lyla wouldn't share a birthday. Both were major concerns for me. I called to schedule my induction. They had already scheduled the allotted elective inductions for that day but put me on a waiting list and told me most likely they could fit me in in the afternoon.

I went about my day ... making lunch for the kids, helping Logan clean the garage, and relaxing some as well. I was crampy, but knew that is very common after having your membranes stripped.

3:00 - Logan leaves to go do some service work with a foster boy he mentors. I loaded the kids in the car and took Sophie to get her ears pierced {an early birthday present for her}. After getting her ears pierced, we went and made a bunch of copies for my church calling.

We get home around 5:00 - I start making the kids dinner and realize that I am having pretty strong contractions. I text Logan and tell him I am having some pretty painful contractions and that I might not make it until tomorrow! He immediately calls back and asks how far apart they are. I tell him I haven't been timing them, but that I wasn't worried about it being any time soon.

By the time my kids finish eating I am in quite a bit of pain. I am trying to relax with my hypnobirthing breathing. It is hard however, because my kids still need a mom. Collin wants to make an ice pop and Ruby is freaking out about a fly. I decide at this time that I need to tell Logan to come home. I call him and then call my mom to come get the kids. Meanwhile I go upstairs to finish packing my kids bags and my hospital bag.

Soon my parents arrive. I am so glad to see the kids leave. My parents want to stay with me until Logan gets home but I tell them that I need the kids gone! So they leave. I finally feel like I can try to relax ... but still worried that this isn't the real deal I keep moving in hopes that they contractions don't die off.

Logan arrives home at 6:45. He takes a quick shower and we head to the hospital. I am trying my best to do my breathing.

7:30 - We arrive at the hospital. It seems like the longest walk to labor and delivery ... stopping every few minutes during contractions. They send me to triage and hook me up to the monitors. My contractions are every 2 to 3 minutes and I am dilated to a 5.

8:15 - I finally get to go to the delivery room. I desperately wanted to get in the laboring tub and asked them to fill it up right away. I got in and immediately started feeling intense pressure. I kept trying to relax and breathe. Logan would ask me if I wanted to listen to my hypnobirthing scripts but I felt like they would be more distracting than helpful. So I just continued to breathe. I asked the nurse to check me because of all the pressure I was having. I was so nervous about delivering in the tub. I was now dilated to a 7 and decided that I should get out.

After getting back in the bed the pressure continued and I kept trying to breathe ... filling my purple imaginary balloons! Soon my doctor walked in and that is when someone else took over my body. The baby was crowning. My water broke and I was in so much pain. I could not relax. I desperately felt like I needed something to relax me, but knew there wasn't time. All I could do was scream. I remember my doctor telling me in her sweet voice that the baby was coming. And I kept screaming. LOUDLY. I think I shouted "I can't do this!" I remember the doctor telling me that I needed to move down in the bed and shouting "NO!" back to her. In fact I wasn't moving down the bed, but up. As Lyla continued to slip her way out I would push up on my feet almost as if trying to scoot away from the pain.

Lyla was born at 9:35 ... on her due date. She weighed 8 lbs 4 oz and was as cute as can be with lots of dark hair! I had done it! I had my med free birth. I felt so accomplished ... and a little embarrassed. I remember turning to Logan and apologizing for all the screaming. Everyone was telling me how good I did ... I think to help me feel a little less embarrassed! I was extremely emotional. The adrenaline rush was overwhelming.

But the birth wasn't over yet. I won't get into details, but the delivery of the placenta and the stitches that followed were no picnic either. In fact it was worse than I could have even imagined and involved yet some more screaming! But soon it was over and I was holding my sweet baby girl in my arms.

The experience although not what I was prepared for was amazing and my recovery has been awesome. So much better than my other births with epidurals. An experience I will always remember.


His version:
9:00: Mowed the lawn. Started cleaning out the garage. Who says guys don’t have a nesting instinct?

12:00: Quick lunch and back to the garage.

14:15: Finished the garage and left out the door.

15:00: Picked up Austin. He’s my 16-year-old foster kid friend that I mentor. We had planned to get together and help out his biological mother by working on her car.

16:00: Arrived at Austin’s mother’s house. I had planned on changing the oil in her car, but when we arrived she said that the oil was just changed but she needed new rear brakes. So right away we put her car on jacks and started tearing it apart. It’s a risky business tearing apart some else’s car, when you’re not a pro. What if you can’t get it back together?

17:15: Text from Jenn: “How’s it going?”
“Good, be a couple more hours. Love you babe.”

17:31: Text from Jenn: “I am having a lot of painful contractions. I don’t know if I will make it to tomorrow.”
This was a problem. Here I was, an hour away from Jenn, who was 35 minutes away from the hospital. If I left right then we’d be at least 95 minutes minimum from the delivery room. The new brakes were on the car, but I couldn’t for the life of me figure out how the get the car back together. I was totally stuck wondering if I was going to have to just leave and strand poor Austin with his mother’s car torn apart. I’m running calculations through my head; “What would it cost to get this car towed to a shop and have it finished by a pro? $1000, 1500. Jenn would understand if I wasn’t there for the delivery, right?” After more struggling with the car, and a google search on my phone (how did we function without smart phones anyway?) we figured out how to put the car back together. I quickly packed up the tools and raced for home.

18:30: Racing home. 85 mph, now 90 mph. Would a cop really believe me if I said my wife was in labor? They probably hear that all the time. 75 mph.

19:00: Arrived at home to a calm Jenn. You wouldn’t know by looking at her that she was well into active labor with contractions every 3 minutes.

19:30: Arrived at the hospital. They took us back into a room to do a quick exam. The nurse checked her and quickly determined that we were there to stay with an imminent delivery.

20:15: In the delivery room. Jenn having steady contractions that seemed to be occurring more then they were not. Despite the pain my dear bride is suffering all I can think about was how hungry I was. I kept asking her if it was ok if I left for a minute to grab something from the cafeteria, but it was never the right time. When I finally do get something, the delivery was way too close to even eat it. I know, who cares about the hungry husband when the mom is giving birth. But, I was worried I was going to pass out from all the gruesome stuff and low blood sugar. More contractions. Me: “Do you want to do some hypnobirthing scripts?” Jenn: “No!” So much for hypnobirthing!

21:32: The doctor finally shows up. The baby is ready to arrive. Jenn is now in more pain than she ever imagined. Jenn: “I can’t do this! I can’t do this!” Me: “Your doing great. You can do it.” I’m thinking, babe you don’t have a choice, too late for drugs, no backing out now, you’re committed. At this point Jenn is now starting to scream. I’ve never heard Jenn make sounds like this before. It was a combination of a roller coaster scream and being murdered scream. “WHHHAaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!!!!!!! I CAN’T DO THIS!!!”

21:35: Jenn delivers the baby. Amidst the blood and screaming Lyla makes her way quietly out. Jenn didn’t even push at all, she just came out when she was ready. It was so fast that the doctor didn’t even have time to get ready and change out of her street clothes. She walked in, sat down, and caught Lyla.

It was great. It was beautiful. I loved watching Jenn endure through that experience. She was crying through all the pain, but I had to stop myself from smiling and laughing in front of her as I was so proud and amazed at what I was witnessing. She did a great job. Its rare that you get to see someone you love pushed to the absolute limit of their capabilities and come safely back, bringing a child back with them. Pretty special.