Sunday, November 15, 2015

Six Months


Half a year already! Where does the time go?!?!

This month has been a big one for you. You are up to 15lbs 13oz and 26 1/2 inches long.

You have really found your voice--you LOVE to talk. Every time I pick you up at daycare the teachers tell me just how chatty you have been. I love it! You are also really beginning to master some of that hand-eye coordination. You can grab and hold on to your paci and even get it to your own mouth (hallelujah!). You are sitting up on your own and sleeping through the night like a champ. You love eating oatmeal in the mornings and at lunch (though I can't seem to get you interested in any other foods just yet--no apples, no pears, no squash, nothing). 

You still love Lennon and think she's hilarious. You are also beginning to really be interested in toys--you can grab onto them and sling them around in the air! 

Your hair continues to be some of the best looking 6 month hair I've ever seen and your personality is just a delight! We love you SO much! 

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Five Months

Another month has come and gone! In our unofficial weighing at home you came in around 14lbs 7oz! You are growing like a weed and beginning to really plump up...sweet little baby rolls on your legs and arms. 

This month you took your first vacation with us to the beach! We even took Lennon along for the ride. You loved the water but mostly just took naps in the warm sun in our laps while we read books and enjoyed the sound of the ocean. You also loved the swing on the beach--we'll need to get you a swing at home I think! 

Your toes finally found their way to your mouth. Well most anything eventually finds its way to your mouth these days :) You are drooling up a storm and watching intently when we eat in front of you (soon, baby, soon!). You love to feel everything--you open your little palm and scratch your fingers across anything that comes your way--books, the couch, your sheets, your clothes, everything. We also discovered that you are a tummy sleeper--once we flipped you on your belly (after coming in several nights where you were arching your back and head like you wanted to flip) you sleep like a champ (usually). 

You continue to be such a happy little bug and we just love watching your personality continue to emerge. You are a little charmer and have the sweetest smile when people talk to you. We love you more and more with each passing day! 

Four Months

We've made it to month four! What a fun month it's been! You are up to 13 lbs 10.5 oz in weight and are 24 inches long. You toughed it out through your 2nd round of shots and are a good, strong, and healthy little girl. And your hair? More awesome than ever! 

This month you started at the Discovery School at Temple Emanu-El and so far you love it there! You love taking rides in the Bye Bye Buggy and sitting up in the Bumbo seat for Circle Time. It's been great for you to meet other friends and begin to develop all of your skills and abilities. You come home SO tired because your brain is learning and growing so much every day. 

You really are a happy and good baby. You spent one week this month with Mimi as she helped us with the gap before day care started. And you also spent some time with Bebe and Pops who helped us when we had other things to do that weren't baby-friendly. You love to talk and grab your toes. You are working really hard to roll over--any day now! You still love to be on your piano play mat--you love to grab all of the toys. (You've become quite grabby now that you realize you can do it!) We also bought a jumper seat for the doorway--though you haven't quite figured it out yet, you do love to be upright and seeing the world around you. Lennon thinks your scary in there and barks at you but you just think she's funny! :) We love hearing your laugh--best part of any day! 

We love you so much little girl and are loving watching your personality begin to shine through! 

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Three Months

Three whole months! Each day is more and more fun as Harper's personality begins to emerge. These days she loves to talk--to her toys, to us, to anyone or anything that will listen really! She smiles often and is working really hard to giggle and laugh. It's my favorite part of the day to come home and hear her sweet voice and giggles. She is drooling up a storm and we think beginning to feel the early stages of teething as she is constantly putting her fingers to her gums. 

She weighs 12lbs 5oz and her hair grows more full and poofy by the day! I love it and love putting bows on that full head of hair. We were loaned a piano play mat this month and Harper loves to kick at the piano and pull at the animals. She is really learning to grab on to things and wanting to sit up on her own. She is working towards rolling over but not quite there yet. 

I survived my first few weeks back to work and Matt enjoyed some dad time with Harper. Together they've learned how to master bottle feeding and are working to prepare her for the shift to daycare in only a few short weeks. She has also made the switch to her crib at night and, just like her mommy, Harper loves to sleep! She will often go from about 8:30pm-4:00am and then go back to sleep until I wake her at 7:30am or so. Yay! 

Harper what a joy you are to watch grow and learn! You are loved! 

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Two Months

What fun! We have loved watching Harper grow and change during month two! 

Harper you are now 22 inches long and 10lbs 7oz. You are working really hard to hold your own head up all the time--you love to pull up and show off how strong you really are. You kick like crazy all the time and have the longest little legs! This month you've started to interact with us, which we love. Your smiles are just the sweetest and we love to hear you coo and talk. One night you even let out a little giggle in your sleep--now to get you to do it when you're awake! 

This month you had the chance to meet your cousin Ava (who was fascinated by all of your hair!), your Aunt Mary Beth and Uncle Caleb, and took some beautiful Gilbert family photos. You made your first visits to First Church and met lots of the people that love you.You enjoyed Symphony in the Summer at Railroad Park and love to ride in the car. You survived your first round of shots (but let out the saddest little tears I've ever seen).

Your little personality is slowly coming out and you love to chatter all the time! We love you Harper and can't wait to see where the next month take us! 

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

One Month

I can't believe it's already been ONE whole month! And what an adventure!

Harper is growing and changing by the second. She is super strong and working hard to hold her own head up. She pushes with her arms and legs all the time and loves to look up. She has gained weight really well and is now up to 9lbs. 8 oz. She is sleeping fairly well--once she actually falls asleep. And overall she isn't a very fussy baby. We love watching her take in the world around her! She is such a joy and we are loving being her parents! 

Sunday, May 3, 2015

My Birth Story--Delivery

It was finally time to push! Dr. Thomas actually came in for the entirety of my pushing and delivery (most doctors come around mostly to catch the baby!)--she said this was the best part and why would she want to miss it! 

Once I was in position they would help me know when a contraction was coming and then we would push for 3 counts of 10 as hard as I could and then rest. Jenna and Dr. Thomas were really great coaches and Matt was very encouraging. We had to move positions a couple of times to try and navigate the pelvis but with patience and persistence we did it! Very early on you could see and feel that tiny head of hair! It was encouraging to see and feel progress. 

Dr. Thomas worked VERY hard to keep from having to perform an episiotomy or from having me tear. I was so thankful for the effort she put forward because I know many doctors would not have been so patient. In the end, however, there was simply no way that Harper was going to make it into this world without it. And so she made a small incision to try to help us get her out. Somewhere along the way Dr. Thomas also noticed that we both felt really warm. Upon taking my temperature we discovered that I'd spiked a fever somewhere around 99 degrees or so. They immediately got me some Tylenol to try to reduce the fever. Unfortunately we had no such luck and my fever continued to climb with it's highest being somewhere around 101.8. They started me on an antibiotic and told me that the baby would for sure be headed to the NICU because of the infection. Apparently in long labors moms can spike a fever because of infection in/around the uterus at the time of it's opening. I honestly don't understand it all but because the baby is exposed to that infection she has to be treated with antibiotics as well. I was heartbroken but at this moment all that mattered was getting her out. 

So we pushed on and finally at 2:05pm I felt her whole body slide out. They were able to VERY quickly set her on my chest and let Matt cut the cord before whisking her away to the NICU team for suction and assessment. Once she was finally a bit more clean and ready they brought her over to me in the picture above. She smiled at me and blew bubbles--this moment/picture might be my most prized possession and memory from that day. They then took her back to the NICU team and Matt was able to go with her and make sure she was settled and well cared for. 

In the mean time, my small cut had become a 3rd degree tear that needed some serious stitch work. Dr. Thomas began work on that because the placenta was taking it's sweet time to come out (she wasn't too concerned at this point). However, my epidural was wearing off. I could wiggle my toes and feel my feet. So the pain of the stitches was pretty significant--she injected some lidocaine to try to help but I could still feel her working. She finally finished the stitches and made it back to work the placenta out. You have 30 minutes to deliver the placenta or else that have to retrieve it manually. Alas, we didn't make the time table and so Dr. Thomas had to reach in and get the placenta out herself. It was THE most painful thing I've ever experienced. It didn't want to come out and my epidural was wearing off. I screamed and cried. Finally it was all over and Matt made it back from the NICU to tell me everything was going to be ok. 

Now they needed to clean me up and monitor my infection and fever before we could go see my baby girl. It seemed like the longest hours of my life but finally around 5 or 6 so we were able to go back and meet Harper Christine for real. 

It wasn't exactly how I'd imagined labor and delivery going--and definitely wasn't what I'd hoped for our baby's first few days of life--but it was all still a beautiful and miraculous process. I can't believe that I carried and nourished that beautiful child for 9 months and then successfully pushed her out to experience life in this world! Let the adventures begin! 

My Birth Story--The Labor Part

Once in the triage room I changed into a hospital gown and was hooked up to the monitors. I was indeed having semi-regular contractions (and effacing rapidly) but I was only 2cm dilated. (Side note: I am still very bummed about not making it longer at home--I had planned to labor at least until 4cm in the comfort of my own bed/bath/couch, etc.) Anyway, they gave us the choice to try to walk it out and move things along or go back home. At this point, going home seemed a bit silly so we opted to try to walk it out. 

So Matt got me up out of the bed (and grabbed a bucket to carry with us as I was still feeling very nauseated) to walk the halls of the Birth Suites. We walked for 30 minutes and then came back to be checked. While I didn't dilate much more, I had significantly effaced. So we loaded up to walk for 30 more minutes. I had to stop almost every time I had a contraction--so much for the vigorous walking Dr. Benton suggested! After our 2nd round of walking it did appear that I was beginning to dilate more and I was almost 100% effaced. They offered for me to walk some more but I just simply couldn't. They also offered to bring in the birthing ball and stool--I decided that would be a better option. I sat on the ball for the next 30 minutes or so--it actually felt pretty good. The nurses were really worried that my water would break at any second so that's really what I was looking/hoping for. When they came back for a 3rd check I had definitely dilated to 3cm. They gave me the option to go ahead and be admitted or go home. We decided it was time to bite the bullet and be admitted. 

After getting settled in Room 317 they offered me some pain medicine. I was SO tired that we decided I should take a dose to help me get some rest while I could. The labor was still really continuing almost exclusively in my back and the pain was some of the worst I've felt in my life. But before they gave me the medicine, I did decide I wanted to take 1 more bath. And I did! But got very nauseated and sick before I could make it into the warm water. It was terrible but I didn't have a choice. Once I got in the water was soothing, I stayed in as long as I could but finally decided it was time to get some relief. 

At this point it was about 1 or 2 in the morning. The pain medicine worked quickly. I remember the nurse doing intake and asking some questions and me not really knowing if I was answering her or not. I slowly drifted off into sleep. After about an hour the medicine was wearing off--we opted for a round two to continue to let me rest. In the meantime, we also decided to have me sleep on my side with one leg propped to try to help labor progress. I was so groggy it didn't much matter. All I remember is that it stormed at some point in the night. I ended up taking a 3rd round of pain medicine (I probably shouldn't have taken so much in retrospect) and then opting to go ahead and get the epidural for some more permanent relief. At about 6am Dr. Harper (ha!) came in to administer the epidural--I have never felt relief so great as I did after that moment. It wasn't bad at all (though a really weird thing not to feel your own legs). 

At shift change our nurse for the day Jenna Harper (crazy!) came in to take good care of me for the rest of the day. She and Dr. Thomas came in at about the same time to check on my progress and see what we were in for. At the time of the epidural I was probably about 6cm dilated which was almost to my goal of waiting until we hit 6 or 7cm before getting the heavy drugs! Dr. Thomas also made the decision to go ahead and break my water--thank goodness I'd already received the epidural! When she did, however, there was meconium in the fluid--this meant that a team from the NICU would have to be present at the birth to suction the baby as soon as she was born in hopes that she wouldn't swallow any of the fluid. Bummer. But she also said she could feel a head full of hair! 

Once my water broke we tried to get me comfortable and get as much rest as possible. We flipped from side to side to try to progress dilation more rapidly. At about 10am Jenna thought we might actually be ready to push--I was feeling a lot of pressure REALLY low for most of the morning. Baby girl was dropped and ready for most of the morning. But when Dr. Thomas came to check she said that we actually had a little bit more work to do--my cervix was still not completely dilated on BOTH sides. So we changed my position several times--tried to sit me straight up and even things out. 

Somewhere around 12:00pm-ish it was finally time to push! 

My Birth Story--Labor Begins

This is one of the last pictures of my pregnant belly as I headed in to work on my due date, Thursday, April 23, 2015.

I want to write this down so that I don't forget the details. Every birth story is beautiful and wonderful in it's own right--so here is mine! 

After going to the doctor Wednesday for our 40 week check up, I really began to feel like things were going to get moving soon. On Thursday, Lennon and I took a really long, vigorous walk as suggested by the doctor. Nothing seemed all that unusual until I woke up at my usual "witching hour" in the night around 3am or so. I hadn't really felt any contractions up to this point--in fact I was worried I wouldn't really know what they felt like because I'd had no Braxton-Hicks that I could tell. But when I was awake in the night I knew that I was beginning to feel something different--pain, mostly in my back, that would come and go with some regularity. I didn't think too much of it and tried to just go back to sleep. 

On Friday morning I woke up and ate my regular round of donuts :) and watched Scandal from the night before. Nothing seemed too crazy but I just REALLY didn't feel well. There hasn't been a day in my pregnancy that I felt as bad as a did on Friday. I knew something was beginning to happen. 

I tried to take it easy throughout the day. I rested on the couch with Matt and Lennon. The contractions were coming off and on but nothing very regular or all that concerning. Matt did some grocery shopping and once he came back home I decided I needed to get out of the house. So I took a bath and got dressed and ready so that we could head out to the Outlets to do some shopping and walking around. I did pretty good at the Outlets (and one woman even told me I was "such a cute pregnant woman!" Little did she know how much I needed to hear that today!)--we made it a few hours before I just looked at Matt and said I need to be closer to home. And then I changed my mind, I needed to be home. 

By the time we got home it was late afternoon and I was really beginning to feel some strong contractions--mostly in my back. I rested while Matt fixed us breakfast for dinner. I ate a good meal knowing it might be my last for a while. At about 7:00pm we decided to try to head to the bed and get some rest while we could--at this point I knew that labor was imminent. We gave mom and dad the go ahead to get on the road first thing in the morning because this baby was coming! 

Once in the bed I couldn't get comfortable at all. The contractions grew much stronger and I was still feeling all of it in my back. I decided to get in the bath to try to ease some of the discomfort. The warm water felt good for a little while but eventually the contractions returned and they felt worse than before. Once I got back to the bedroom Matt tried to help ease the pain by applying pressure and rubbing my back but nothing helped. As a few of the contractions moved to the front I really began to feel nauseated and worn out. They were coming closer and closer together and we began to panic that we might be further along than we thought. 

After another hour or so we finally bit the dust and called the doctor. Thankfully, Dr. Thomas, was on call for the weekend--she was one of our favorite doctors we met with when we rounded the practice. She told us to go ahead and come to the hospital as that was really the only way to determine if labor was actually underway or not. 

So we finished packing our bags and put everything in the car to head to the hospital. It was a miserable 10 minute ride for me. The back labor was SO strong and SO painful. But we made it to the hospital and they put us in a triage room to check things out....

She's Here!

Harper Christine Lacey is finally here! 
Born Saturday, April 25, 2015 at 2:05pm
Weighing in at 8lbs even and 20 1/2 inches long

She's more beautiful than we could have ever imagined! 

40 Weeks

Still here! This week the doctor said we'd made some significant progress in effacement. She went ahead and tried to help me to 2cm dilated as well but said we probably landed somewhere around 1.5 or so instead. So the waiting continues. Dr. Benton ordered some vigorous walking to try to get things rolling along! 

We also had an ultrasound just to make sure everything is still looking good and running on time. All is well! Baby girl is happy as a clam in utero. AND the ultrasound tech showed us that it looks like she has a head full of hair :) She is currently estimating Baby's weight to be about 7lbs. 14oz. Yikes! Bigger than I thought (but hello....look at that belly!). We can't wait to meet Baby Lacey! 

39 Weeks

Went back in for our weekly appointment this week and there isn't a whole lot of new news to report. We are still progressing slowly and waiting for baby to make her debut. They will allow me to go a week past my due date so at this point we aren't in a huge hurry or worry to get her out! She is still well within her time limits :) 

Still feeling good--the carpal tunnel pains in my hands and the oversized belly (ahem I can't reach over to get anything on my own anymore it seems) are probably the things that are bothering me the most. I'm not sleeping all that well but that's to be expected at this point. 

While we wait this week we decided to go ahead and plant the garden. The weather has been just beautiful and I figure once she arrives I won't much feel like doing anything but watering a garden :) 

38 Weeks

Things are still moving along just as they should be! Although I am only about 1cm dilated, effacement is continuing and seems to be progressing ever so slowly each week. So we wait....

Though many people think this baby is coming early, I am still standing by my prediction all along that she will either come right on time or a little bit after. Overall I am still feeling pretty good, just big! I'm still regularly attending prenatal yoga and Lennon and I have been enjoying lots of walks around the neighborhood. 

Monday, April 6, 2015

Happy Easter!

From our family (of almost 3) to yours! 

37 Weeks

We went back to the doctor for round 2 of weekly check ups. Everything is still looking good! I'm measuring just right and baby's heartbeat is sounding great. In terms of progress, we got just about the same report as we did last week--still a ways to go. BUT I am now officially considered full term and they won't stop labor when it begins. 

In other news, as Holy Week approaches I decided I better try on my fitted robe to see if it would still fit. And, alas, as you can see above, it "fits" in that I can zip it up over my belly but oh my gosh the pockets were pulling back really far and it was incredibly uncomfortable. Looks like I'll be switching to the "Harry Potter" robe for Maundy Thursday and Easter! :) 

Lenny has also taken a liking to the bump lately....

36 Weeks

And so begin the weekly check ups.....

There is only 1 month (ish) left! Everything looked good today at the doctor. She begins doing pelvic exams at this point so that we can have some sense of a time table--so far we still have some work to do. Other than that, baby is looking good and her little heart is beating at 142bpm. 

We completed our Breastfeeding Class which was really helpful in terms of helping us feel prepared to take that journey when Baby arrives. We also spent an entire weekend returning a lot of the gifts from the shower that we either didn't need, needed to trade out, or that we had doubles of. Whew! That was a lot of work but better to do it now than later! 

Really feeling like things are coming together and we have all of the "big" things we need from here (thankfully). Now we just put on the finishing touches and wait (and take naps, I've been needing lots of extra rest lately)! 

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

34 Weeks!

Time is seriously flying by these days! Here we are at 34 weeks already--woah! We went back to our regular doctor for a quick check up since we hadn't seen her in a few rotations. Once again everything looks good! We switch over to weekly visits when we come back at 36 weeks--crazy. 

Baby girl is moving up a storm. What once felt like lots of little tiny flutters and kicks are now more like strong punches and rolls. She is definitely beginning to run out of space in there! 

In between my last post and this one we also had TWO baby showers! Baby Lacey received SO many wonderful gifts and is already loved by so many. We are so thankful for our many wonderful friends and family who are already looking forward to meeting her. 

This picture is really only the aftermath from ONE shower. Thankfully my momma came to town to help me organize and sort so that the nursery no longer looks such a mess :) We were able to wash all of the newborn clothes, wash the sheets and towels, make the bed, and get everything fairly ready to go. We also bought all of the things that I'll need post-partum so now I really feel a lot more prepared for what is ahead in the coming months. 

Monday, February 23, 2015

30 Weeks

We've officially crossed over from doctor's appointments every 4 weeks to doctor's appointments every 2 weeks! Woah! Where'd the time go?!

This time around we saw the PA as Dr. Goolsby was busy in Labor & Delivery. Everything is still looking good and I walked out of this visit with the added bonus of a TDAP shot. 

We have spent the last several Monday evenings in child birthing classes at St. Vincent's. Some classes and discussions have been more helpful than others but overall it's got us thinking about our fast approaching due date and all the things we want to try to make happen when the time comes. I'm trying my best to remain flexible and realize that I've never been in labor before and I honestly have no idea what I will want in the moment. But I've been reading up as much as I can, listening carefully as we talk in class, and trying to make some best guesses about how we would LIKE for things to go! We toured the birth suites last week and that made it seem very real. We love St. Vincent's (hello, we've spent way too much time there b/c of Matt's pancreas) and so the rooms were just as we expected! 

28 Weeks

We hit 28 weeks and so it was back to the doctor for a check up! This time we started our rotations through the practice and visited with Dr. Thomas. She was excellent! 

All is still looking well--my weight keeps creeping on up there and now my belly is growing out by the second it seems. Little miss was quite wiggly while we were trying to hear the heart beat and Dr. Thomas ended up having to "trap" her with her hands to get a good read. But, no worries, all is well as she came in right around her typical 150bpm. Crazy child! 

The only other issues we talked with the doctor about were my increasing carpal tunnel pains--for which she suggested sleeping in wrist braces--so we've added that to the routine to try to keep it from getting any worse. It really is the craziest thing. It started in my thumb on the left hand and then spread to the pinky--though it seems to have mostly subsided in my pinky finger my thumb is still mostly numb on the inside. We also talked about possible tricks for getting better sleep. It seems the 3rd trimester insomnia has come in right on time. 

All in all we are doing quite well! Continuing to finish up the nursery and anxiously awaiting showers and celebrations ahead! 

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Babymoon to Big Sur

Because we like to travel so much, we knew pretty much as soon as we found out we were expecting that we wanted to take one last big adventure with just the two of us (yes, yes I know that we can travel as two again but it will be different when you have to leave a CHILD behind and not just your dog). After much research and deliberation we decided to visit Big Sur in California. 

And, I must say, it did not disappoint.

We spent most of our days enjoying the sunshine and beauty of the California coast. 

We did a good bit of hiking, checked out the redwoods,

caught some gorgeous sunsets,

enjoyed the stunning views, ate picnic lunches,

saw our fill of migrating whales and crazy elephant seals, and took lots of beautiful photos! 

It was such a relaxing, peaceful, and downright beautiful location for our babymoon! I highly recommend a trip to Big Sur in your lifetime!

On our final day/night we took the opportunity to hang around San Francisco. Matt had never been before so there were a few places we HAD to stop (ie the Golden Gate Bridge below). We wandered the Mission District for most of the day and ate a really wonderful meal at Greens restaurant before turning in for the evening.

We are so thankful that we had one more opportunity to sneak away just the two of us and we definitely made memories that we will cherish forever! 

Thursday, January 15, 2015

24 Weeks

It's hard to believe that ANOTHER 4 weeks has passed us by so quickly. During the past several weeks we celebrated Christmas and rang in the New Year. It's been a wonderful time spent with family and just taking it easy as the two of us. (I completed a puzzle, read a book, caught up on some TV shows, planned our trip, & just enjoyed a slower pace) Baby Girl already received lots of love in the form of books and clothes--she doesn't even know what's coming!! 

At our most recent doctor's appointment I had to undergo the dreaded Glucose Test. But I really must say, it wasn't all that bad. The drink I downed pretty much tasted like Hawaiian Punch! :) It seems that everything came out normal as we have yet to receive any news (in this case, no news really is good news). Baby's heartbeat was still nice and strong--she was moving all around at our appointment and continues to do so regularly! All is well with Baby Girl and time is flying by these days! (and as you can see from above, there is no more hiding the fact that I'm pregnant)